Sunday, 6 November 2011

Kindergarten politics

Some hold that Prime Minister's Questions is a 'bear pit' although in my opinion it is more like a kindergarten class of noisy, rude and ill-behaved children. (Kindergarten. fm German: children's garden) That MPs seem to be getting younger and younger may have something to do with my advanced years, but I digress. 

On the subject of the kindergarten aspect of our politics I suppose it only natural I should return to the baby of them all, Chloe Smith. As we all know young Chloe has just been promoted to the position of Economic Secretary to the Treasury, albeit, presumably having been just an administrator with Deloitte, she knows nothing about economics. 

A correspondent from Norwich advises me that after her elevation a number of what he termed 'sycophantic' letters of praise appeared in the local press. The cynic in me wonders if these letters were spontaneous or whether they were 'orchestrated' by the local Conservative Party. One constituent, writing in the Norwich Evening News, was not so enamoured (no link unfortunately):

The last paragraph of J. Bennett's letter emphasises one of the reasons why the present system of democracy must be changed - and now!


TomTom said...

Interesting that Prime Minister's Questions only dates back to 1961 with it being less formal before then. It is simply a TV performance of dubious constitutional value and should be replaced by a 60 minute session every 2 weeks

Anonymous said...

Ferdinand Lundberg once wrote on the US congress.

It is a settled conclusion among seasoned observers that, Congress apart as a separate case, the lower legislatures — state, county, and municipal — are Augean stables of misfeasance, malfeasance, and nonfeasance from year to year and decade to decade, and that they are preponderantly staffed by riffraff, or what the police define as “undesirables,” people who if they were not in influential positions would be unceremoniously told to “keep moving.” Exceptions among them are minor. Many of them, including congressmen, refuse to go before the television cameras because it is then so plainly obvious to everybody what they are. Their whole demeanor arouses instant distrust in the intelligent. They are, all too painfully, type-cast for the race track, the sideshow carnival, the back alley, the peep show, the low tavern, the bordello, the dive. Evasiveness, dissimulation, insincerity shine through their false bonhomie like beacon lights….
It could well be said for our own parliament.

WitteringsfromWitney said...

TT: 60 minutes of that crap? No thanks! In my opinion any minister including the PM should be liable for recall to the house at any time for questioning.

DP111: Agreed.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr Witterer of Witney

The system of democracy does not need to be changed, merely the size of government.

The system works perfectly well. What doesn't work is a perpetually growing government, not only in absolute size determined by the wealth it can harvest from the fruits of our labour, but also it's size relative to the whole economy.

It is like a growth in the human body - whether benign or malignant it ultimately threatens the whole.

If government is downsized the attractiveness of power is reduced.

The question then arises how do you stop the all-powerful from getting more powerful, when by default you are not powerful at all?


WitteringsfromWitney said...

Anon: The present system of democracy does NOT work well. If you are content to live for 5 years under a system of democratise dictatorship then fine, but I'm not. At present politicians are given carte banche to enact any law they wish and we have no way of stopping them within that 5 year period. Party leaders have control of their MPs through their whips and thus act as dictators. MPs are supposed to represent the electorates they serve and do not because of that whipping system.

With a participatory form of democracy the people have the means to halt a law before it is enacted and also have the means to suggest laws which the politicians then have to implement.

Might I suggest you research the Swiss system of government?

I think that answers the two points you made?