The Queen's Speech

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by finknottle, Nov 8, 2007.

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  1. Another huge disappointment from this so-called labour government, there was no mention of reforms to that anachronism that is the House of Lords. How can we call ourselves a true democracy when the second chamber is filled with ermine robed un-elected duffers who make a mockery of representative democracy? The time for a directly elected wholly independent second chamber is long overdue. :evil:
  2. I disagree. The Lords are not elected and so they have no seat to lose in an election; this means they are free to say what they think (what the public is really thinking?) and not worry about their political career - ie losing the next election.
    They also have their seats for life so there is decades of political experience among them.
    Also, peers are just as likely to be "ordinary people" as upper class.

    Billy Connoly once said "nobody who wants to be an MP should be allowed to be one". Well the hereditary peers are born politicians, they don't necessarily want to be there, but they are - which I reckon is better than a self-serving career polititian.

    I think we need both houses as they are.
  3. Every Queen's Speech, I hope and pray she'll stop, take off her glasses, and say "Pray tell one, who wrote THIS load of bollocks ?". Ah well, there's always next year...........
  4. I am at a loss to understand your reasoning on this matter. As it stands the House of Lords is filled with members who are there by an accident of birth or have been put in place by the party in power for political or some might say financial reasons. As for them being 'ordinary' people I wonder what your definition of an ordinary person is?
  5. No country can call itself a democracy when it allows peope to sit in parliament purely by accident of birth.
  6. I think there are two points being made, a non-elected second house has the potential to mitigate for the excesses of governments tendency to intrude on the personal lives of the citizens it is supposed to serve. With the second house being free from the pressures of party politics and re-election then they shouldn't be reduced to the mindless posturing and beauty contest style of politics that the current house of commons has been reduced to.

    OTOH there should be a debate about how that second hous is made up. Dunkers is a little idealistic about the current makeup of the Lords, many hereditary peers don't take that much to do with it. A lot of life peers are political appointees whose presence risks the integrity of the governance role I already outlined.
  7. Are you saying that this function could not be better fulfilled by a second chamber elected by the people? Our Armed Forces are deployed on a fools errand in an attempt to impose democracy on other countries when our own so called democracy is still far from perfect.
  8. Some information on the other place here...

    The Lords, following the reforms, now have a higher proportion of Life Peers (these days all Barons) than Hereditary Peers (Earls to Dukes) and the "backwoodsmen" who were so controversial during the passage of the poll tax are now part of our constitutional history.

    Their Lordships do perform a very useful role in reducing the workload (due to a legislative programme that has been growing since the 1990s) and providing more in-depth scrutiny of legislation that might otherwise arise in the democratically legitimate (elected) House of Commons. It would be misguided to describe them as less prone to political pressures when many hold or seek high office or hold strong political opinions which come to the fore when discussing matters in their House. Where they are invaluable is where they can apply their expert professional knowledge to matters which benefit from experience rather than point scoring, the major weakness in the elected Commons. There are many peers who would be unlikely to seek election were the House elected and whose valuable experience would be lost during committee scrutiny of Bills.

    I used to want their House to be abolished, but having attended many debates (in the gallery) during some interesting Bills, I have usually been impressed by the quality of their deliberations, though on occasions personal feelings or stereotyping opinions interfere with the clinical examination of empirical evidence. I personally would like to see an upper house where the majority are elected but others are allowed to sit by reason of their expertise and especially to be involved in the scrutiny of Bills either in committee rooms or in Grand Committee (committee of the whole House) but see the Lords Spiritual removed. It is during the committee stages when I think the Lords are at their most valuable. Certainly I do think we need to retain the current bicameral legislature.
  9. Why be so keen to have an elected Upper House when the voters would be no more competent than they have been with the Lower House? Surely the freedom of not having to suck up to the fickle electorate or the bullying Whips must result in more reason and stability.

    The whole peerages for payment affair has, sadly, tainted the Lords more than the Party(ies) that actually pursued it. I'm suspicious enough to believe, though, that a back room old guard in Noo Labour encouraged events in aid of destroying the Lords. They have "killed off" the powers of the hereditary Peers and that will have an effect over time. Let's see what develops from that before we tinker with any more fabric of the Nation.
  10. And another thing: how demeaning it must be to be required to read stuff that Broon the Humourless and his henchmen have been openly spouting for weeks! What patience that woman has.
  11. I'd demean myself in return for a few royal palaces, a six figure annual income and my very own Royal Navy! I'd just want to discard the dysfunctional relatives......
  12. Ah! The still small voice of calm.

    Thank you Steve.

    How can you have a battle of wit's with unarmed personnel?

  13. Who is 'that woman' to which you refer?
  14. He means HM the Queen. There are some top people in the Lords, I thank God we have them.
  15. Oh her! Something else that needs to be removed before we can truly call ourselves a modern democracy.

    As for the top people in the lords and thank god we have them, at the end of the day there is nothing they can do to stop the elected house having it's way they, the house of lords are just a complete unelected waste of space and money.
  16. What part of what thingy wrote do you disagree with? Just a minor point, the Lords are not paid the outrageous sums the Commons now draw.
  17. Pretty much, any democratic system becomes corrupted when the process becomes a beauty contest between major parties, rather than an assessment of the potential worth of individuals in the system.

    Personally I think that democracy is fundamentally flawed, as the electorate are neither educated enough, or informed enough to make decisions based on enlightened self interest. Few understand systems thinking and the majority are unable to take the long view.
  18. Keep the commons as FPTP, and an Alternative Vote system in the Upper House.

    As well as an elected Head of State who cannot have been either Chancellor or Prime Minister, still remain a Parliamentary Democracy, and give the Head of State similar powers to the German President.
  19. President or Reichschancellor!
  20. If this kareoke? administration; for that is what it is now; put as much effort into REAL problems as they expended on abolishing fox-hunting we would be going in the right directions

    House of Lords...leave it alone for now......get the lower house in earnest pursuit of keeping a nation to be proud of and away from the Bollox o_O they are up to now :thumright: :nike:

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