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Labour and Conservatives (Labservatives) combine to stop reform and truncate debate on Digital Economy Bill

Two interesting votes occurred moments ago. The debate was about the "programme motion" for the washup.

All of the figures will be on publicwhip tomorrow. I was one of the tellers for both of the votes (in both cases for No).

Firstly, the government voted to stop Bob Smith and I from speaking on the programme motion. I was going to make the two key points about the lack of time for looking at the Digital Economy Bill and the failure to reform parliament.

Then the government and the Conservatives voted for the programme motion. What the programme motion does not do is allow time for the Wright Committee standing order changes which give parliament control over its own business.

This is perhaps the most important change that was proposed as part of the parliamentary reform project. However, both the Labour and Conservative Parties voted against having time to debate it.

We are going into a general election in which all parties claim to support parliamentary reform. The reality is, however, that Labour and the Conservatives oppose reform when they have the chance to really change things.

They opposed reform on recall for MPs, lobby reform, party funding reform and now yet again on the reform of the control of parliament.

They are also driving a bill into washup that is very badly written and likely to have all sorts of unacceptable consequences.


Jerry said…
Yes John, I must admit when I watched the debate and division i had to take a second look, I was sure I saw you sat on the front bench of the opposition, as I only caught it mid way through, I though the house has trully gone nuts and you had forgotton which bench you should be sat on, ahh well it happens to the best of us
Jerry said…
Hot off the Press.

Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has accused Labour and the Tories of blocking reform of the nation's politics.

Opponents blamed over reform block.He said David Cameron and Gordon Brown had combined to scupper plans to change the way political parties are funded.

And during the final Prime Minister's Questions session before the dissolution of Parliament, he told Mr Brown: "It is over, it is time to go."

Following the exchanges in the Commons, Mr Clegg flew to Liverpool to launch his party's mini-manifesto for North West England.

He then boarded a battle bus emblazoned with images of himself and Lib Dem Treasury spokesman Vince Cable to visit a community centre in Penny Lane, the street immortalised in song by The Beatles.

Mr Clegg has made reform of British politics a key part of his strategy, building on his party's long-standing commitment to changing the voting system for Westminster elections.

But speaking on Radio 4's Today programme he said neither the Tories nor Labour were prepared to change.

"They have systematically at every turn blocked every single reform - they have blocked party funding reform, they have blocked reform on lobbying," he said.

"Believing any promises from them is a bit like accepting a consumer guarantee from Del Boy - don't believe it, they are trying to treat you like fools."

Mr Clegg kept up the attack in the Commons, saying Mr Cameron and the Prime Minister were "trying to fool people they are serious about political reform".
Jerry said…
John,, just a little mind boggling issue I spotted in last nights debate in the chambers.

You stated: On the practicalities of clause 4, proposed new section 124A(6)(d) of the Communications Act 2003 talks about collecting the IP address, which will be supplied to the internet service provider. How is that to be achieved?

Stephen Timms replyed:

When a copyright owner identifies that their copyright has been obtained by somebody without payment, they will notify the details to the ISP. The ISP will then send a letter to the customer who is responsible for that account. We are simply talking about letters being sent at that stage. I challenge anyone to suggest that sending such a letter would be a disproportionate response, given the scale of the problem

I think there's now one fundamental flaw in Stephen Simms response, I use quite frequently mobile broadband and have one of those "dongle" sticks, now I purchased the "dongle" without giving any details and no checks and balances were made, these dongles can be purchased now for only a few pounds, even less from E-Bay, with monthly "top -ups" being quite reasonable as well.

If you look up say my ISP it will only show its from T mobile, now what happens then, T mobile don't have my details, where would the letters go then.

What I am trying to say is that with Mobile Broadband anyone could cause copyright infringment,file share without any concequences as the person will not be traced, I think this is a matter that will show this bill has more holes and "flaws" than gordon Browns soon to be worn out socks.
Jerry said…
BT and Talk Talk are seeking a Judicial Review regarding the legalities surrounding the Digital Economy Act,

Both Firms say they want the high court to clarify the legality of the Act before its implimentation, the "rushed" through act suffered from insufificient scrutiny