British Politics



  • @Rembrandt said in British Politics:

    I give BBC a lot of grief in regards to bias but fairplay to them this doco is fairly balanced. Well worth a watch.

    Who is Chris MacLean ? He seems like a massive gaping ahole.



  • @MajorRage said in British Politics:

    Was having a think on the train today, and I've realised the biggest thing I cannot get my head around at the moment.

    Given that British democracy / parliament is widely used across the world and viewed as one of the great British backbones, I cannot fathom how there can be such a hole in the setup. How is it possible, that when a government loses majority - either by MP's crossing the floor, by-elections or whatever, it doesn't automatically trigger a mandatory general election? A lost majority means that the government can no longer be representative of the people. Therefore, basic logic means that the people didn't vote in who has the power, subsequently, the basic rule of democracy is lost.

    It blows my mind that we can be in a situation where the government has lost majority, and the opposition can be allowed to block an election, which therefore means no legislation can be passed.

    That is such a fundamental flaw.

    Yes. No. Maybe. Not always.

    Have a read here: [Minority Governments](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minority_government

    I have selected this bit:
    In Westminster systems, in minority situations, the incumbent government usually has the first opportunity to attempt to win the confidence of the House. This is so even if the incumbents have fewer seats – the incumbent prime minister still holds his or her commission for the duration of the writ period and immediately following an election. If (s)he cannot form a government that commands the confidence of the House then it is expected that (s)he will resign that commission voluntarily – it is not considered acceptable for the Sovereign (or her representative) to revoke said commission unless the prime minister was acting in serious breach of constitutional protocol. Nevertheless, usually an incumbent government that loses its plurality in the House simply resigns, especially if the main opposition party is only a few seats short of having a majority or if it feels it has no chance of winning the support of enough members of smaller parties to win an initial confidence vote.

    I guess BJ could resign. In fact, convention seems to point to this being the norm - although not always.
    But my understanding is that this does not trigger an election. The party who then controls the confidence of the house, then gets to form the government.

    But I am no expert. Someone else can wade in here...



  • @jegga this is Dankula's response to the doco. Gives an insightful account of Steve and "Weird Al Communist", and of Dankula himself. Good if you want to know more about this criminal menace to society and his Nazi ways



  • @Siam Holy heck that was a fun watch. @jegga definitely answers your query on McLean



  • @Billy-Webb There is no way he will resign - and neither he should.

    May quit, he inherited the clusterfuck, (by choice) and is working his arse off to resolve it. Public opinion polls on the Tories are aggressively rising, but the previously elected MP's to represent these same people are going the other way.

    It is a massive hole in the law, that the PM cannot unequivocally call a GE in this situation. The opposition who currently hold the majority, are blocking it as they will (in all likelihood) lose it. That ain't democracy. That's the opposition blatantly doing what they accuse Boris of doing. Putting themselves ahead of the people.



  • @MajorRage It's pretty frightening really. What happens when politicians blatantly disregard democracy? If a referendum and a popular prime minister means nothing...what options are left for the man on the street?



  • @Rembrandt protest and riots.

    We aren't far away.



  • @MajorRage said in British Politics:

    @Billy-Webb There is no way he will resign - and neither he should.

    May quit, he inherited the clusterfuck, (by choice) and is working his arse off to resolve it. Public opinion polls on the Tories are aggressively rising, but the previously elected MP's to represent these same people are going the other way.

    It is a massive hole in the law, that the PM cannot unequivocally call a GE in this situation. The opposition who currently hold the majority, are blocking it as they will (in all likelihood) lose it. That ain't democracy. That's the opposition blatantly doing what they accuse Boris of doing. Putting themselves ahead of the people.

    While I concur with much of what you say there - I have a different take on the bolded bit.

    BJ didn't inherit the situation, he actively worked to engineer the situation. He undermined May at every possible turn. There could possibly actually have been a Brexit deal done already had BJ and his cronies not so aggressively pursued power for themselves. So don't place him up on a pedestal too much. This current clusterf#ck is as much of his own making as anyone else. And be clear on one thing - what he is currently pursuing has very little to do with representing the will of the people. It is a power play. He is just using the agenda of the day as his tools of trade.



  • @MajorRage

    I have to agree with @Billy-Webb on the BoJo/democracy thing. We all want him to succeed and get us off this fucking merry-go-round but wanting it (and thinking that he might be the guy to do it) should not colour over his part in this whole fiasco. I do agree with you that the behaviour of the opposition is very poor behaviour and anti-democracy but then Boris' hands are not clean in this area. Proroguing parliament, withdrawing the whip wholesale, he has no moral high ground here.

    I know some (JR-M for one) will point out that the suspension of Parliament is quite normal but in this instance it just isn't. Even if we were to forget the timing of it, there is little explanation of why this is the longest suspension since 1945 and why such a lengthy suspension is warranted at a time of constitutional crisis.

    This lot are as common bedfellows with the truth as Corbyn and his lot.

    God help us.



  • @Catogrande said in British Politics:

    @MajorRage

    I have to agree with @Billy-Webb on the BoJo/democracy thing. We all want him to succeed and get us off this fucking merry-go-round but wanting it (and thinking that he might be the guy to do it) should not colour over his part in this whole fiasco. I do agree with you that the behaviour of the opposition is very poor behaviour and anti-democracy but then Boris' hands are not clean in this area. Proroguing parliament, withdrawing the whip wholesale, he has no moral high ground here.

    I know some (JR-M for one) will point out that the suspension of Parliament is quite normal but in this instance it just isn't. Even if we were to forget the timing of it, there is little explanation of why this is the longest suspension since 1945 and why such a lengthy suspension is warranted at a time of constitutional crisis.

    This lot are as common bedfellows with the truth as Corbyn and his lot.

    God help us.

    I don't think I'm disagreeing with this at all! I'm very happy with what Boris has done so far and I make no secret of that. In fact, it's been a Ryan Crotty type turnaround for my view on him. After he helped engineer Brexit then didn't stand as PM, followed up by hating the deal then voting for it, I thought he was as trustworthy as Charles Manson.

    However, since he's had the job I just agree with almost all he says, does and his approach. I find it as odd as anybody.

    Note though, my criticism of "the system" is really my point. Rising public popularity vs dropping parliament popularity isn't a new thing. But when it gets to the point that the PM has lost their majority in parliament, surely a general election makes a huge amount of sense.



  • @MajorRage said in British Politics:

    Note though, my criticism of "the system" is really my point. Rising public popularity vs dropping parliament popularity isn't a new thing. But when it gets to the point that the PM has lost their majority in parliament, surely a general election makes a huge amount of sense.

    Intuitively, I get what you're saying.

    But in the UK, the premise is that voters vote for a person (MP) to represent their constituency. While this is obviously massively influenced by the party that person belongs to, ultimately each constituency elects a person based on the views and beliefs of that person. If that elected MP crosses the floor, they effectively take their constituency with them. And if you take the view that the elected MP hasn't fundamentally changed what they promised their constituents, then they are signalling that the party they originally belonged to when elected, no longer represents the best interests of their constituents. Public vs Parliamentary popularity has nothing to do with anything in a Westminster system. The most publicly popular politician doesn't necessarily get to be PM. Just see what happened to Winston Churchill toward the back end of WWII.

    I am no doubt telling you stuff you know so to your point that surely a general election would make loads of sense - yes, sort of. But if you take the view that constituencies are accurately represented by their MP's whichever benches they occupy, then the other option as I pointed out is for the PM to resign and for the Queen to call on another MP who has the confidence of the House to form a new government. Still then very representative of the will of the people.

    It is not a perfect system, but it is not bad.

    In the South African context, we have proportional representation i.e. you get the % seats in parliament that correlates with the % vote you received. (Actually it is a bit more complicated than that - but let's leave it there for simplicity sake). The gist is that we don't vote for a person, we vote for a party. Its monumental flaws have recently (over the last decade) been exposed in that the party actually decides who goes to parliament - not the people. So we have ended up with some absolute gems who if we had a constituency based system, would all have lost their electoral deposits. And on top of that, there is no individual a voter in an area can hold responsible for not fulfilling pre-election promises.

    To paraphrase WS Churchill: Democracy is the worst form of government - apart from all the other systems we have tried.



  • @Billy-Webb said in British Politics:

    @MajorRage said in British Politics:

    Note though, my criticism of "the system" is really my point. Rising public popularity vs dropping parliament popularity isn't a new thing. But when it gets to the point that the PM has lost their majority in parliament, surely a general election makes a huge amount of sense.

    Intuitively, I get what you're saying.

    But in the UK, the premise is that voters vote for a person (MP) to represent their constituency. While this is obviously massively influenced by the party that person belongs to, ultimately each constituency elects a person based on the views and beliefs of that person. If that elected MP crosses the floor, they effectively take their constituency with them. And if you take the view that the elected MP hasn't fundamentally changed what they promised their constituents, then they are signalling that the party they originally belonged to when elected, no longer represents the best interests of their constituents. Public vs Parliamentary popularity has nothing to do with anything in a Westminster system. The most publicly popular politician doesn't necessarily get to be PM. Just see what happened to Winston Churchill toward the back end of WWII.

    I am no doubt telling you stuff you know so to your point that surely a general election would make loads of sense - yes, sort of. But if you take the view that constituencies are accurately represented by their MP's whichever benches they occupy, then the other option as I pointed out is for the PM to resign and for the Queen to call on another MP who has the confidence of the House to form a new government. Still then very representative of the will of the people.

    It is not a perfect system, but it is not bad.

    In the South African context, we have proportional representation i.e. you get the % seats in parliament that correlates with the % vote you received. (Actually it is a bit more complicated than that - but let's leave it there for simplicity sake). The gist is that we don't vote for a person, we vote for a party. Its monumental flaws have recently (over the last decade) been exposed in that the party actually decides who goes to parliament - not the people. So we have ended up with some absolute gems who if we had a constituency based system, would all have lost their electoral deposits. And on top of that, there is no individual a voter in an area can hold responsible for not fulfilling pre-election promises.

    To paraphrase WS Churchill: Democracy is the worst form of government - apart from all the other systems we have tried.

    Great post and points well made.

    My view though is that people are aware that voting for a person means you vote for their party. I could think my local Labour MP was the best possible person on the planet for our area, but I could never vote for them whilst Corbyn is leader of the Labour party. Never.



  • The issue is these MPs aren't representative on one extremely big issue which I would imagine anyone voting at the time would have thought would be done and dusted by now.

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  • @Rembrandt

    Am I reading that graphic correctly i.e. that 485 MPs are Remainers and only 162 are Leavers?
    If so, 2 questions:

    1. How is that calculated?
    2. How, given the 406 Leave constituencies is that even possible?

    @MajorRage would be right then.
    The system has let everyone down in a (with excuses for the Trump-speak) bigly way.



  • @Billy-Webb said in British Politics:

    @Rembrandt

    Am I reading that graphic correctly i.e. that 485 MPs are Remainers and only 162 are Leavers?
    If so, 2 questions:

    1. How is that calculated?
    2. How, given the 406 Leave constituencies is that even possible?

    @MajorRage would be right then.
    The system has let everyone down in a (with excuses for the Trump-speak) bigly way.

    It highlights one of the problems with referenda. The actual numbers versus the actual constituencies, these can often be quite different. The referendum for Scottish independence was an example. The vote was actually reasonably close but (from memory) only two areas voted to leave, Glasgow being far the biggest population wise. It seems though that pretty much the rest of Scotland would rather be ruled by Westminster than Glasgow. True though that in the Brexit vote both vote numbers and constituencies voted leave but there is a huge disparity in viewing the two.

    However, having said all that, you are right the system has let us all down.



  • @Catogrande Thanks. But I still don't get the disparity with so many MP's being Remainers? One would expect if the majority of constituencies are for Leave, this should be, at least more closely, reflected by the MPs?

    There has been an election since the referendum...



  • @Billy-Webb said in British Politics:

    @Catogrande Thanks. But I still don't get the disparity with so many MP's being Remainers? One would expect if the majority of constituencies are for Leave, this should be, at least more closely, reflected by the MPs?

    There has been an election since the referendum...

    I'm not sure one should expect it (said with tongue firmly in cheek) but we should certainly hope it would be the case. But this really is the crux of the problem Population want out. Political masters want in.



  • @Billy-Webb said in British Politics:

    @Rembrandt

    Am I reading that graphic correctly i.e. that 485 MPs are Remainers and only 162 are Leavers?
    If so, 2 questions:

    1. How is that calculated?
    2. How, given the 406 Leave constituencies is that even possible?

    @MajorRage would be right then.
    The system has let everyone down in a (with excuses for the Trump-speak) bigly way.

    Because you keep assuming MPs are representing the views of constituents. They are not.



  • @Billy-Webb Not sure myself, when I get a chance I'll dig into it, even the 2/3rds of constituents voting for leave surprised me. I was anti-Brexit at the time of the vote so back then The Guardian was my gospel so skewed reality somewhat.

    Just saw this highlighted today. Labour MPs singing for a Marxist revolution in the house of commons. Sickening.



  • @Baron-Silas-Greenback said in British Politics:

    @Billy-Webb said in British Politics:

    @Rembrandt

    Am I reading that graphic correctly i.e. that 485 MPs are Remainers and only 162 are Leavers?
    If so, 2 questions:

    1. How is that calculated?
    2. How, given the 406 Leave constituencies is that even possible?

    @MajorRage would be right then.
    The system has let everyone down in a (with excuses for the Trump-speak) bigly way.

    Because you keep assuming MPs are representing the views of constituents. They are not.

    That's the only logical conclusion I can come to as well Baron. Goes somewhat to @MajorRage point about the system's flaws I guess.


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