The Electorate Has Spoken: “Democracy is Important”

The winner of political arguments in democracies is decided not by those who argue but the voters. The electorate has spoken and has definitively decided which side won the argument.

Despite this, journalists continue their mindless and boring speculation on what will happen next. In fact the predictions of the various BBC “political editors” have been a bit like the horoscope in a popular rag – all things to all people and anything could happen. The journalists will now (for a while anyway) embark upon sucking up to the politicians that they in the course of the election treated rudely and called liars.

The journalists fail to understand that the electorate is not stupid but really extremely perceptive – more perceptive than the political commentators and politicians give credit for. It perceived by the majority of the electorate great damage by not “getting Brexit done” was being inflicted on our democracy and according the majority voted to get Brexit done because the majority deemed democracy more important than prosperity.

The majority were right. I think that the important thing about democracy is that in the world today the majority of people in any nation can never be prosperous if the nation is not democratic, because democracy does create conditions for prosperity. Tyrants, dictators and democratically installed rulers of whatever political persuasion always end up impoverishing the majority of the people in the nation they rule.

The case for Brexit is simple: the European Union is not genuinely democratic; the real decisions are made by un-elected bureaucrats and the people of the EU have no real say in the direction that the EU is to travel and the policies it should adopt. In the United Kingdom the majority of the people perceived this and voted for Brexit. They understood that in the short term there will be loss of jobs, perhaps a loss of some prosperity, but in the long term democracy will bring prosperity and if it cannot be found in the EU then the UK is better off outside the EU. Staying in a nation (the EU is attempting to be a nation) that does not have real democracy will inevitably result in prosperity moving from those less well off to the large corporations and to the politicians.

Clever, this electorate.

On Governments

In the United Kingdom we are governed by governments chose by those we elect to Parliament. Today the old Parliament has run its course and the people will soon be electing a new Parliament. The old Parliament deserved to be extinguished; the people deserve better than what it offered. Members of the Government’s Opposition clung to their seats not to introduce or scrutinize legislation but to embarrass and humiliate the government as much as possible which largely left the government reasonably helpless and the people without a government that could govern.

It was said nearly two hundred years ago “that government is best which governs least” which a few years later Henri Thoreau turned into “that government is best which governs not at all”. But the world has changed in two hundred years. Life is extremely complex now and the people of each nation need competent governments and deserve governments, ideally good governments governing according to the wishes of the majority of the electorate that chose their representatives in Parliament.

The experience of the past few years shows that our representative democracy when mixed with plebiscite democracy leads to chaos. Many of the members of the old Parliament representatives did not feel bound by the referendum and thought it perfectly democratic to subvert the results of the referendum because they believed that representative democracy is more democratic than referendum democracy. If they did not believe that, they must have believed that they knew better that their electorate.

For all that, those purporting to believe in representative democracy are (ironically) anxious to limit their own democratic powers (and the wishes of the electorate) by subverting their own powers to the powers of foreign institutions. One Parliament, in constitutional theory, cannot bind a successor Parliament. The way around this rather inconvenient rule of the constitution is if one elected government can enter into a foreign treaty then the provisions of the treaty can bind every future Parliament for long periods of time, because treaties are so much harder to overturn than legislation.

For this reason, certain politicians seek to tie the hands of future governments in fields like employment (called workers’ rights) environmental policy and economic policy and immigration policy. Thus some politicians have sought to prevent future Parliaments elected by the people for putting into effect what the electorate may democratically vote for in future.

Effectively the electorate are told that they are not competent to elect a government with the powers that governments have enjoyed in the United Kingdom for hundreds of years. In fact governments that we may elect are also not competent; the only competent authority to govern us lies outside these islands.

I find this behaviour by certain members of the old Parliament as both immoral and disgusting.

Why Oh Why

I find some things hard to understand so perhaps someone would explain them to me:-

  1. Why the fear of losing some economic prosperity is more important than the reality of losing democracy and freedom.
  2. Why Members of Parliament feel free to act against the wishes of the majority of people in the UK having previously promised faithfully to put into effect the wishes of the majority.
  3. Why Parliament feels justified in enacting legislation that significantly weakens the UK’s position in negotiations with the EU.
  4. Why it is inaccurate to describe the legislation in 3 above as an act of surrender.

Lord Kyriakides?

I have always fancied a title. Perhaps I can put my name forward to Mr Johnson. It seems that the House of Lords is very biased towards staying in the European Union and Mr Johnson may need to create 500 or so new life peers who support Brexit in order to get Brexit over the line.

Now I am a democratic and am in favour of the abolition of the House of Lords but as it is there and could stand in the way of Brexit I am prepared to do my democratic duty and become a life peer, if Mr Johnson can put my name forward to the Queen.

It would tick all the diversity boxes imaginable – there are no peers of Greek Cypriot/Czechoslovak origin at all. This is a vastly under represented ethnicity in this county.

It’s about time we had a peer of Greek Cypriot/Czechoslovak origin.

I promise to attend the House of Lords purely to vote and debate Brexit. I would not draw any fees or emoluments – it would cost the country nothing, not even fares because I could use my bus pass to get to and from Westminster. Once Brexit was resolved I would resign my title and never attend the Lords again.

So, Prime Minister, may I have a title?

Hypocrisy in Action

Many members of the Parliament of the United Kingdom are upset and distressed because the government will curtail the time available for them to introduce legislation to prevent a “no deal” Brexit by a few days. They complain that this is constitutional. They have had more than three years to introduce such legislation, but this apaprently has not been long enough.

They fail to mention that in the EU Parliament (which they want the UK to remain linked to by preventing Brexit) no member of that Parliament has ever had the right or ability to introduce legislation to prevent the EU from doing anything.

What did People Vote for in the Referendum held Three Years ago?

A change of Prime Minister brings optimism in some and despair in others. Those who started with optimism usually find after a year or two that their optimism was misplaced. Those who reacted with despair usually find out that things are not quite as bad as they feared.  His key policy will be to brexit the UK  from the EU within the next three months and six days.

That is what we voted for, or was it? Continue reading

The Economics of Brexit

I am not an economist but simply listen to economists as they make their analyses and predictions. I do this because they are widely reported and hardly a day goes by without some learned person making some kind of prediction about our future prosperity. Continue reading

Immigrants and Attitudes

The attitude of the indigenous population of the United Kingdom towards immigrants is changing. In April, an Ipsos Mori survey found immigration was a concern for 11% of people – the lowest level since 2001. Concern reached its highest level in 2016 when the Brexit referendum was being held. Why the change? Continue reading

Demography Democracy and Gerrymandering

It seems to me that politicians arguing against Brexit do so because they cannot achieve their political aims by democracy as it exists in the United Kingdom but they can achieve their political aims by the rule of the European Union, if EU law over rides the law of these islands.

For example, we can look at the issue of environmental policy. The UK has generally adopted environmental policies that are not terribly helpful to the environment. The EU has apparently adopted slightly more helpful environmental policies. Therefore the political parties who favour more helpful to the environment policies prefer EU rule to the rule of a democratic United Kingdom. Therefore they are against Brexit because they cannot achieve their ends through the UK ballot box.

Certain politicians believe that the rights of employees should overwhelming prevail against the rights of employers. If the UK is left as a self governing nation there is a real risk that at some time in the future democracy through the elections at the ballot box will adversely change workers rights whereas they are confident that the EU, an autocratic bureaucracy, will be much less likely to do this, and so they are against Brexit.

There are other examples in areas of economic policy, taxation and laws. In essence those against Brexit generally oppose Brexit because they do not trust the voters of the United Kingdom to adhere to their favoured policies, but they can trust the EU or so they think.

Now the policies of those against Brexit may be marvelous or may be appalling. I do not make that judgment. The point I make is that it is for voters in a state to decide (more or less) what policies of what government the state should enact.

Those against Brexit are merely gerrymandering on a grand scale.They prefer to manipulate electoral boundaries so as to favour the rule of the EU over the democratically elected governments of the United Kingdom.

So democracy is out voted by an institution which really has no ideals other than economic ideals. The famous “four freedoms of the EU are all ones that we would not normally consider as freedoms at all. They are the free movement of goods, services, capital and persons within the EU. These are not what we traditionally think of as freedoms. We think of life, liberty, freedom of expression and freedom to elect those who govern us.  The four so called freedoms of the EU do no more than provide what large corporations and multinationals require – trading, finance and a work force. These so called freedoms are not to be enjoyed by those outside the EU. A freedom is a universal concept that should apply to everyone, not a local concept applying to members of a club.

Sovereignty of a nation is hard won. Many of the EU member states won their sovereignty as a result of sacrifices made by the United Kingdom and the United States. Others won their sovereignty as a result financial expenditure by the UK and the USA on defence, which ultimately wore out the old USSR.

The concept of sovereignty is an important one in a democratic context. If there is no sovereignty in a state there cannot be democracy there, and if there is no democracy then we as individuals cannot enjoy our individuality.

 

 

A People’s Vote: Fake Words

I am highly suspicious when words are misused by politicians and those lobbying for something. The latest example is the us of the phrase of “a people” vote”. These fake words are used by many politicians seeking a second referendum on the UK’s previous referendum about the European Union. It is as though the previous referendum was not a vote by people. Continue reading