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Cross-posted from My Torygraph blog. - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
wemyss
wemyss
Cross-posted from My Torygraph blog.

I awoke every two hours overnight worried about and for Nadine Dorries MP: rightly, as it transpires. As one of the few orthodox members of the C of E, I don’t believe in oneiromancy – and yet ... oneiromancy or not, on the night before MP expense scandal broke, I dreamt of escaped wild boars savaging the home farm, so....  Very odd.

 

The fact is, there are good and honest people in the House, and I tend to count Ms Dorries as amongst them.  The gravest threat arising from the current scandal is that the opportunity of reform will be taken up and used by un-British lunatics to rewrite the constitution, rather than by sensible persons with a sense for the history and traditions of the realm: i.e., that the Jacobins will take over.  If so, we may blame the hoons and poons, from Margaret Moron – sorry, Moran – to the Contemptible Steen.  (And why, pray, are we talking of ‘Stockholm’ duck islands?  Is this simply to make things still easier for Sandi Toksvig?)  The worst of all possible outcomes will be if we are lumbered with vast and unnecessary constitutional changes, wholly unrelated to the graft, bung, and corruption and the remedies for it, as a result of the misconduct of the Martins, Bercows, Hailshams, Opiks, Ballses, Follets, and Grays (that sh-t) amongst ’em, and all their acquaintance.  The idea that the House – and the Lords, to an extent – has been too much a ‘gentleman’s club’ is balls: no club I know would wear this for a moment.  What’s been lacking is having gentlemen in it.  This closed shop and its old Spanish practises wants cleansing, but the answer to the problem, What do we do when our MPs cannot be trusted?, is, rather evidently, to elect MPs who can be trusted.  Transparency is essential.  Sitting down like a bunch of sans-culotte Frogs in 1789 and trying to ratiocinate a whole new system to replace the Burkean, organic growth of centuries is not only not essential, it is that which it is essential to avoid.  (To borrow further from Burke, that would be akin to giving the crickets of the field licence to cut down the oak.)  Yet this is being obscured by the perfectly righteous anger of the long-tried electorate, who are now prepared to rain equally upon the just and the unjust, let alone equally upon the venal and the merely venial.

 

Take the Upper House.  An elected senate of sorts is precisely not what is wanted.  The deformation of the Lords, in the name of ZaNuLabour ‘reformation’, has made it simply a dumping ground, and a means of patronage, the ultimate rotten borough, whereby placemen whom a PM wants, but whom the people would never dream of entrusting with power, can be got into government without the bother of standing for election.  Yet an elective Lords (in name) would have quite as much democratic legitimacy as the Commons, and could not long be prevented from taking back the powers it lost a century ago; the prospect of two houses in different party hands, permanently deadlocked, is not one any of us ought to contemplate with equanimity.  Or again, take the idea of an independent body of the great, the good, and the Sir Humphreys as a standards committee to judge MPs and their doings.  What utter tripe.  It would be co-opted in a heartbeat.  And it stands squarely against the principle that those to whom the MP answers are, simply, the people, his or her constituency.  It would make Britain as pseudo-feudal as Sark under the despicable Brothers Barclay.  And then there’s Dave’s lunatic pronouncement that what we really want is more professional, full-time politicians, spending forty hours a week legislating still more nannyingly.  Precisely not, Mr Cameron.  To the contrary.

 

No.  The remedies that are wanted are simple, and involve going back, not off to the leftwards.  I repeat them, from my prior entry. 


Get the realm out of the EU.  Adjust the obscene number of MPs, lobby fodder, most of them.  End statutory instruments.  Stop putting everything on the statute book.  Pay MPs enough, and adjust the hours of sitting, that working people can afford to be MPs, but not enough that they can cease to work and become professional politicians for life, moving from SpAd to MP to quangocrat: structure things such that members are persons with experience of life, whether as a GP, a QC, a farm labourer, or a miner.  Get a real Speaker, a Frank Field or a Sir George Young or (please God) an Ann Widdecombe.  Loosen party discipline to a reasonable level: no more FU putting stick about.  In short, restore the House of Commons – and the Lords, whilst we’re at it – to their functions. 


Or face the consequences.

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Comments
fpb From: fpb Date: May 22nd, 2009 01:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
Just one point - Sandi Toxic, ahem, Toksvig, is not a Swede, she's a Dane. And the two nationalities don't appreciate being confused. After all, would YOU fancy being taken for a Frenchman?
wemyss From: wemyss Date: May 22nd, 2009 02:21 pm (UTC) (Link)

Hardly. However...

... just as I cd be a good deal funnier abt a Versailles duck house than a Topkapi one, I shd hope a Dane cd be a lot funnier abt a Swede (or other root veg.) or his Swedish duck house than I cd do, or than she herself cd be abt, say, a duck house modelled on the Red Fort of Agra, the Texan Alamo, or the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.
magic_at_mungos From: magic_at_mungos Date: May 22nd, 2009 09:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
This whole thing is horrendous for politics. It feels like what I remeber it feeling like pre 1997 election with the sleaze and bad press except worse. I don't know whether that's because I'm more aware of it (seeing as I was 11ish at that time).

It can't get worse, can it?
wemyss From: wemyss Date: May 23rd, 2009 02:52 pm (UTC) (Link)

It has done.

Overnight, we found that the blog of Nadine Dorries MP was taken down by legal order on the application of the owners of the Telegraph because she, a mere MP, dared question their reporting and their motives. There's a reason I use an American ISP for everything, and damn the expense, through an arrangement kindly created by an American lawyer. I picked the trick up from Tom Strathclyde.

This country is going to wrack and ruin at a geometrically accelerating pace.
magic_at_mungos From: magic_at_mungos Date: May 24th, 2009 01:08 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: It has done.

*facepalm* Planks. I don't agree with much of what I can see she stands for but come on. Not on really.
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