Skip to main content
Labour's destruction of democracy

One thing that has not had much public comment is the way in which the Labour government have been whittling away at democracy. There are number of areas in which they have done this:

  • Corporatism One of Labour's Third Way Ideas is to bring in traditional Corporatism as part of their agenda of governmental reform. I think wikipedia's definition of this is actually quite good. To quote an element from wikipedia "certain unelected bodies take a critical role in the decision-making process"


    The introduction of Local Strategic Partnerships is entirely this. Unless the LSP is clearly defined as having an advisory function it starts taking away the discretion primarily of the local authorities, but also starts interfering in parliamentary matters. I will post more about the problems with Birmingham's own citywide LSP which I happen to chair.
  • Constraining politicians Local Councillors have been disqualified from being elected for talking to MPs about casework, whilstleblowing about illegal payments by their authority (Lancaster), taking the wrong route out of a dinner (Blackpool) and many other issues which the electors would in some instances actually support them doing. We are now in a position in which local government officers are known to threaten councillors with references to the Standards Board. Again this is a movement away from democracy where councillors are elected to hold the bureaucracy to account towards a situation in which the bureaucracy can constrain councillors through a legalistic process. It is all well and good saying that a councillor should not shout at officers, but actually sacking a councillor for doing on individual occasions is unreasonable. The balance of power is moving too far in the direction of the bureaucracy.
  • Making the elections easier to fiddle What happens in the Ukraine happens on a massive scale in many English cities. With a bit of luck this will be proved in the Aston and Bordesley Green election petitions which should be in court in March 2005.
  • Introducing more QALGOS A quango is a Quasi Autonomous National Government Organisation. A Qualgo is one for local government. If people look at the New Deal for Communities across the country they will see a situation which frequently is hit by fraud and financial mismanagement (not always, but fraught with difficulties).

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Statement re false allegations from Esther Baker

Statement by John Hemming
I am pleased that the Police have now made it clear that there has been a concerted effort to promote false criminal allegations against me and that the allegations had no substance whatsoever.
I would like to thank Emily Cox, my children, Ayaz Iqbal (my Solicitor), my local lib dem team and many others who supported me through this dreadful experience. There are many worse things that happen to people, but this was a really bad experience.
It is bad enough to have false allegations made about yourself to the police, but to have a concerted campaign involving your political opponents and many others in public creates an environment in which it is reasonable to be concerned about ill founded vigilante attacks on your family and yourself. Luckily there was a more substantial lobby to the contrary as well, which included many people who were themselves real survivors of abuse, which has helped.
I am normally someone who helps other people fight injustice. …

Homelessness vs Selling Books

Candidates in elections tend to find themselves very busy with lots of things to do.  It is, therefore, necessary to prioritise things to ensure that the important things are dealt with.

To me the issue of homelessness and rough sleeping is an important issue.  Therefore, when Birmingham's Faith Leaders group contacted me to ask me what I would propose and whether I would work with them to make things better I was pleased to respond with my views and indicate that I would work with them after the election.

The Faith Leaders Group (Bishops and other religious leaders in Birmingham) have now sent out their report.

Sadly, according to their report,  I was the only candidate for Yardley to respond.  The group in their report said:

"Particularly disappointing was the lack of response from some of those candidates seeking re-election as MP for their respective constituencies."
It is worth looking at the priorities of my opponent.
Interestingly today she has decided to be at th…

Millionaires and politics

The Labour Party spent most of the last election criticising me for being a successful businessman (aka millionaire). That is business in the private sector employing over 250 people. It is worth looking at the situation for the Labour Candidate now:

For the year 2016-7 Annual Income from Parliament74,962Specifically for her book51,250Other media income etc5,322.82Total declared income131,534.82

Traditionally anyone with an annual income of over £100,000 has been considered to be a millionaire. I did not use my position in parliament to increase my income.


I have been asked for sources for this. This BBC piece looks at how one should define rich. It was written in 2011 so the figures will be slightly out of date. There are perhaps 2 relevant pieces:
"In 1880 a rich person would have had £100,000 in assets or an income of £10,000 a year, he says. About a hundred people a year died leaving £100,000 and by 1910 this was 250 - "a microscopic fraction of the number of death…