The House of Lords

Of all the legislative chambers in all the nations in the whole world only a national chamber of the People’s Republic of China has more members that the United Kingdom’s House of Lords. The numbers of the House of Lords swell at least twice a year, when people are appointed to the chamber. More often than not those appointed are failed politicians or successful business people who are wannabe politicians. They like the handle and for people to call them “my lord” or “my lady”, as Alan Sugar shows in his television programmes where he is invariable referred to as “Lord Sugar”. 

The title of Lord is an ancient one, traditionally conferred by the monarch on someone who has performed a service for the monarch – such as fighting in battle or being an brilliant procurer of sexual partners for the monarch.

The House of Lords, people claim, works well, but if it does work well (something i doubt) it works as a result of political favours and benefits being repaid, in one way or another. This nonsense serves no one but the great and the good, who are a class of people defined by themselves.

If you are appointed to the House of Lords you get

– a title – which helps with free airline upgrades

– a daily allowance of £300 – for which there is no compulsion to work

– a good opportunity to earn money by virtue of the fact that you are a lord and therefore someone of perceived influence

– free offices with a great and subsidised bar and restaurant from which the hoi polloi are excluded.

The House of Lords is not democratically elected; it serves as a sop for disappointed politicians and for business people who have donated money to political parties.

Ultimately I suppose, just as a poor person is in favour of rich people paying high taxes some of which cascades down to the poor, so the wealthy people are very much in favour of the poor people to pay something towards the rich people maintaining their wealth; the House of Lords does this excellently.

One Response

  1. All these criticisms applied to the House of Lords before it was “reformed” by the Blair government, but I think the reforms have made the situation worse. The differences with the old HoL were that the hereditary peers who were active in it often came from families with a long tradition of public service regardless of
    party ties, and in those days the life peers had usually done something genuinely meritorious. We have lost those advantages. Instead we have something based on repayment of political favours and rewards for so called celebrities.

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