Sunday, 22 January 2012

Here's another fine mess you've got us into......

As Laurel and Hardy used to say - well, one of them did.

Peter Hitchens, Mail on Sunday, writes about the case of Victor Akulic - an article on which Richard North, EU Referendum, passes comment. On the same day we are informed that Cameron - aka Dav il Cam - is to 'confront' the judges from the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), telling them: "Stop meddling in British justice." - on which again Richard North comments, linking to Autonomous Mind. On the same subject  of ECHR 'rulings' we have the recent decision from the ECHR on the matter of Abu Qatada, yet another decision which shows just how impotent is our supposed government.

It is readily acknowledged that I have been 'banging on' about the defects of our membership of the European Union and all that that entails, but the problems we face are compounded by membership of organisations like the ECHR in which we have no place under the present terms of membership. The plight of our country is further compounded by deficits in our present system of democracy, namely representative democracy, which amounts to democratised dictatorship, in that elected politicians are able to enroll our country in agreements and treaties over which we the people have no voice.

That 'power' which politicians have taken invariably leads them into a situation from which there is no escape - witness membership to the ECHR. It is that 'power' that has allowed our nation to be subsumed into the European Union - and, as with the ECHR, led us to be 'governed' by forces outside our control. All the above begs the question why we allow a government to exist that is unable to govern?

Is it not time that those who controlled the shovels with which they dig an even bigger pit, into which we are forced to fall, had their shovels taken away from them? 


Ian Hills said...

Just to clarify that the EU intends to accede to the ECHR, which is run by the 47-memberCouncil of Europe, which Britain currently chairs -

The accession of the European Union (EU) to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) constitutes a major step in the development of human rights in Europe. Discussed since the late 1970s, the accession became a legal obligation under the Treaty of Lisbon, which entered into force on 1 December 2009

WitteringsfromWitney said...

IH: Well aware of all that - with respect, our point is......?

Anonymous said...

Give me back that shovel, I'll widen and deepen and dig a hole big enough for all of 'em.

IanPJ said...

Psst, it was Stan and Ollie wot said that, not Abbot & Costello...

TomTom said...

the EU intends to accede to the ECHR,

The EHCR was CREATED by Britain in 1951 with a Treaty drafted by BRITAIN to bring the European - especially Stalin-dominated Europe under influence of British Lawyers.

The fact that most countries do not have an English legal system but send Civil Servants from the Justice Ministry as Judges is beyond the comprehension of the dimwit political class.

The British have a long track record of building institutions that fail - League of Nations, Commonwealth, United Nations, IMF, WTO, - it was not France or Germany that created the EHCR but is simply now that the EU must decide whether EHCR or ECJ takes priority

Edward Spalton said...

I think it is fair to say that the ECHR started out with sensible, laudable, limited objectives - such as attempting to ensure an independent judiciary etc. Over the years it has morphed into an organisation, geared to providing large legal fees from public funds for Cherie Blair and friends to fight cases (for instance) on behalf of a stroppy schoolgirl who did not want to wear her school uniform.

It is a classic case of bureaucratic "mission creep" to which all organisations are subject but particularly those of a supra national character, beyond even the feeble control of any country's parliament.

NATO is another case in point. It changed from a purely defensive alliance of strictly limited objectives to an all-purpose, go anywhere, attack anybody organisation - no longer international but supra-national and unlimited in its ambitions for "humanitarian interventions" anywhere in the world.

As with "human rights" , many good people (of a different sort) instinctively support NATO, recalling its original service as the defensive guarantor of Western Europe against aggressive communist attack from without and subversion from within.

I suppose that "New Labour" and the Not-the-Conservative Party come into a similar category in this respect of retaining a high degree of "brand loyalty" when the reality of what is on offer has changed utterly.

As a school governor I saw the original, simple idea of the national curriculum seized by the educational establishment and perverted into the obfuscating, prescriptive, jargon-laden monster it is today. That happened very quickly and the good intentions of politicians never stood a chance against the practiced wiles of the bureaucracy.

Antisthenes said...

I admire your utterances and am in total agreement but they do leave me despondent. You accurately and eloquently point out the major failings in our democratic processes and in our institutions that we have built for ourselves or signed up to. However what I am sure of is that the solutions you propose are never going to be applied as apathy, stupidity, vested interest and lack of popular support will block attempts at doing so.

WitteringsfromWitney said...

Anon Be my guest......

IPJ: Thanks and amended......

TT: Methinks ES has answered your comment.

A: Thank you. I still believe that the disinterest, apathy - call it what you wish - can be overcome by 'education' of the people.

Anonymous said...

We get, and have got, exactly what we deserve from the political system.
For many years we have been preached-to by the politicians and have believed them.
The EU would lead to a better, united, Europe.
The United Nations (now a communist/green-led organisation) would lead to peace among nations.
Better accountability by devolving power to non-governmental organisations.
Well, the sh#t we're in is a direct result of US believing the lies we've been told over many decades.
Most do not vote, but whine loudly when their "rights" are infringed.
Most vote with their newspapers tone-of-politic (newspapers themselves being owned by people with no interest in freedom and loads of interest in power).
People have for years shown no interest, and now it is too late they expect to be rescude from the sinking ship....maybe they had better stop banging holes in it and start bailing ?

TomTom said...

that the ECHR started out with sensible, laudable, limited objectives - such as attempting to ensure an independent judiciary etc.

I disagree. It was designed to put Lawyers in charge of Nations and to extend the writ of British lawyers over subject peoples in Germany. It was to weave a skein of law superior to any national law but arrogantly decided Britain would not be affected....and it made it so hard for appeals from English Courts.

The cases Edward that have been "lost" were lost deliberately, such as gays in the military - a 1997 Election Pledge by New Labour NOT to offer any defence.

That is how British Governments change the law the way they wish; they offer no defence and in English Courts Judgment in Default is provided for those offering NO DEFENCE.

I recommend you read the ECHR Website and Cases rather than Daily Mail.

BTW. The two countries appearing most often in Strasbourg are Britain and Italy....two countries with long drawn out judicial practices

Edward Spalton said...

Tom Tom

I believe that Ernest Bevin, Foreign Secretary in Mr. Attlee's government, foresaw the sorts of consequences you suggest and wished to oppose the Council of Europe and all its attendant subsequent institutions and ambitions. He was overruled. It was my understanding that HMG bowed to American pressure. Uncle Sam later bankrolled the European Movement. In Bevin's day we were broke and dependent on dollar loans.

"If you open that Pandora's box" (The Council of Europe), Bevin said,"You don't know 'ow many Trojan 'orses will come flying out".

Harry Beckhough, (who was a Foreign Office official in charge of resurrecting the Rhineland Universities from 1946-52), told me that Bevin ordered British intelligence to stop looking for Nazis in 1947/8 and to switch to looking for communists. Adenauer had convinced the Americans that he was the man (assisted by ex Nazis) who would deal with the communist threat. So the Americans were calling the shots.

I expect that the motives of the people establishing the ECHR were probably mixed. Some would undoubtedly be moved by the consideration of preventing the repetition of past horrors. Others may well have been playing the longer game which you suggest. In my experience all bureaucracies develop their own momentum, not necessarily connected with the founders' intentions.

I am not a Daily Mail reader.

TomTom said...

ES, I find your latest posting more convincing. Thanks.

WitteringsfromWitney said...

Anon: You are of course correct in the observations you make, however it is the dilution of power that direct democracy allows and makes possible.

TT: If you met ES you would quickly realise he is not a DM reader! Nice to see the two of you conversing.....!