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Thread: UK Politics Thread

  1. #241
    Voluntary Suspension Voluntary Suspension Philippus Flavius Homovallumus's Avatar
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    Default Re: UK Politics Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Idaho View Post
    Collapsing? What a quarter where economic growth stalls is a collapse? That's like saying when I put my car in neutral I have destroyed my car.
    I was being flippant - nonetheless, Germany's economy has been slowly stagnating and the Chancellor is losing control.
    "If it wears trousers generally I don't pay attention."

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  2. #242
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
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    Default Re: UK Politics Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Philippus Flavius Homovallumus View Post
    I was being flippant - nonetheless, Germany's economy has been slowly stagnating and the Chancellor is losing control.
    Indeed. Germany is facing a downturn and Merkel does not seem to be at the top of her game.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

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  3. #243

    Default Re: UK Politics Thread

    Social pathologies of the old country.



    BREAKING:

    It has been reported that PC Laura Hughes of Wiltshire Police (Aka Laura Jordan) who turned her back as violent hunt supporters assaulted peaceful anti-hunt protestors in Lacock on Monday, is a fully paid up member of the Avon Vale Hunt.



    (Unlike the riffraff Maxwell trafficked in)


    Vitiate Man.

    History repeats the old conceits
    The glib replies, the same defeats


    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 

  4. #244
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    At a key point in the pandemic, the government signed a £107 million deal to buy PPE from a NI sweet company. Lyndsey Telford investigates what happened next, and how a box of kit that cost the taxpayer £1,000 came to be sold for just a fiver.
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episod...unting-for-ppe

    CLANDEBOYE AGENCIES LTD
    Nature of business (SIC)
    46360 - Wholesale of sugar and chocolate and sugar confectionery
    https://find-and-update.company-info...mpany/NI617785

    250 x Fluid Repellent PE Gowns Disposable Blue Surgical Sleeve Thumb Loop PPE
    Buy 1
    £95.00 each
    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/403296785...kAAOSwugVhvY1g

    Why are they in government?

  5. #245
    Darkside Medic Senior Member rory_20_uk's Avatar
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    The Civil Service organises these logistics.
    Politicians were giving their associates contracts.

    An enemy that wishes to die for their country is the best sort to face - you both have the same aim in mind.
    Science flies you to the moon, religion flies you into buildings.
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  6. #246
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Default Re: UK Politics Thread

    Anyone here voting Conservative in the next election?

  7. #247
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    The Civil Service organises these logistics.
    Politicians were giving their associates contracts.

    Oh, and don't blame the civil service for the actions of the elected government. Such as when the civil servants balked at awarding a 200m contract to a company with no relevant track record, only to be overruled when a Tory peer, who was married to a director of said company, went to the elected government to demand an explanation.

  8. #248
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Liz Truss overruled officials to demand they approve a £1,400 lunch with a foreign diplomat at a Tory donor’s struggling gentlemen’s club.

    The foreign secretary spent hundreds of pounds on wine and gin alone during the meal in Mayfair last summer. She “explicitly asked” to use the venue, “refused to consider anywhere else” and even rejected a cheaper and less party political option as “inappropriate”, according to official correspondence.
    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/l...l-do-z0gq8pknc

    Damn those meddling civil servants, and damn public funds.

  9. #249
    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pannonian View Post
    Anyone here voting Conservative in the next election?
    I have voted Lib-Dem dem in 2017, may well do so again if the tories persist in showing a lack of 'grip'.

    Fingers crossed we're fully acceded to CPTPP by then, as it will limit the amount of damage any newcomers can do in the following parliament.
    Last edited by Furunculus; 01-02-2022 at 17:41.
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  10. #250
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Furunculus View Post
    I have voted Lib-Dem dem in 2017, may well do so again if the tories persist in showing a lack of 'grip'.

    Fingers crossed we're fully acceded to CPTPP by then, as it will limit the amount of damage any newcomers can do in the following parliament.
    What do you mean by damage?

  11. #251
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    In 2019: Daniel Kawczynski says he is a fluent Polish speaker.
    In 2020-21: Daniel Kawczynski claims £8,244 in expenses for Polish language lessons.

    And yeah, this is the same Daniel Kawczynski who pimped for supplementary paid work for the Saudis on the basis that he was one of the most pro-Saudi MPs around. The same Daniel Kawczynski who tried to sabotage Parliament's discussion of Brexit by asking the Polish government to veto the extension of article 50. Still, that last bit is good right, even though it involved asking a foreign government to override Parliament's freedom of action.

    Source: Daily Mail. Yeah, even the Mail was disgusted enough at Kawczynski's hypocrisy on that last bit.

  12. #252
    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pannonian View Post
    What do you mean by damage?
    by attempting to re-integrate to areas of the EU that really make no sense from a power/autonomy PoV.

    like fetishising the customs union, when 85% of regulation that impacts on inspection disruption comes from the single market not the customs union. customs-unions became a demand on top of the EEA model because we had to 'think of the peace process in NI'. power politics is ugly.

    like attempting to gain single market access while pretending that the flanking-policies the EU will demand don't exist, which will bleed into management of growth industries like AI, data, energy, banking, gmo, biotech.

    to put it at its most fundamental: to leave the EU but keep the 'precautionary principle' as the regulatory method, stunting the very industries above that would most benefit from 'demonstrable harm'!

    joining CPTPP locks in many of these british 'preferences', as it will be politically difficult for labour to sell-the-pass to europe when negotiating to reintegrate (on tough terms - "yes, but only if you also do this..."), without becoming non-compliant with CPTPP. according to same lowe CPTPP does not entirely preclude a SPS agreement on trade in food goods, but CPTPP will limit its reach into the anti-competitive behaviour the EU requires in basing its decision making on (subjective) safety rather than (objective) risk

    don't get me wrong, there are definitely areas where reintegration would be a good idea - REACH chemical regs for integrated supply chains FYI - but you have to understand why there was a single-market+customs-union+flanking-policies vs clean-break dichotomy.

    i.e. i'll take REACH, but not at any price.

    there will be a strong compulsion on any incoming labour gov't to get a quick-win on the 'sensible brexit' and the EU will be polishing their knives in anticipation.

    i don't trust labour, not least since I contend that we ended up with brexit precisely because blair sold-the-pass on the social chapter last time. so, bring on CPTPP asap before this shambles of a gov't collapses.
    Last edited by Furunculus; 01-04-2022 at 14:35.
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  13. #253
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Furunculus View Post
    by attempting to re-integrate to areas of the EU that really make no sense from a power/autonomy PoV.

    like fetishising the customs union, when 85% of regulation that impacts on inspection disruption comes from the single market not the customs union. customs-unions became a demand on top of the EEA model because we had to 'think of the peace process in NI'. power politics is ugly.

    like attempting to gain single market access while pretending that the flanking-policies the EU will demand don't exist, which will bleed into management of growth industries like AI, data, energy, banking, gmo, biotech.

    to put it at its most fundamental: to leave the EU but keep the 'precautionary principle' as the regulatory method, stunting the very industries above that would most benefit from 'demonstrable harm'!

    joining CPTPP locks in many of these british 'preferences', as it will be politically difficult for labour to sell-the-pass to europe when negotiating to reintegrate (on tough terms - "yes, but only if you also do this..."), without becoming non-compliant with CPTPP. according to same lowe CPTPP does not entirely preclude a SPS agreement on trade in food goods, but CPTPP will limit its reach into the anti-competitive behaviour the EU requires in basing its decision making on (subjective) safety rather than (objective) risk

    don't get me wrong, there are definitely areas where reintegration would be a good idea - REACH chemical regs for integrated supply chains FYI - but you have to understand why there was a single-market+customs-union+flanking-policies vs clean-break dichotomy.

    i.e. i'll take REACH, but not at any price.

    there will be a strong compulsion on any incoming labour gov't to get a quick-win on the 'sensible brexit' and the EU will be polishing their knives in anticipation.

    i don't trust labour, not least since I contend that we ended up with brexit precisely because blair sold-the-pass on the social chapter last time. so, bring on CPTPP asap before this shambles of a gov't collapses.
    If you principally care about autonomy, why do you want to lock us into another organisation that we won't be able to get out of? Why is it that your lock is good, but the other guy's lock is bad? Shouldn't we be keeping out of CPTPP and other such organisations that lock us into anything that we can't practically exit?

  14. #254
    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pannonian View Post
    If you principally care about autonomy, why do you want to lock us into another organisation that we won't be able to get out of? Why is it that your lock is good, but the other guy's lock is bad? Shouldn't we be keeping out of CPTPP and other such organisations that lock us into anything that we can't practically exit?
    This is essentially the same as your question to me about why I believe Nato is good but EU is bad, and the answer is the (practically) the same:

    One is an intergovernmental treaty with very limited treaty based obligations that don't touch on domestic societal management, where the other is a ceaseless iteration of further integration via supranational means that has an explicitly political ambition and touches deeply into how society functions.

    Of course labour could abrogate CPTPP, parliament is sovereign, but it would pay a political price to do so and would need to make its compromises with the EU openly. Good, the Social Chapter was a disaster in my opinion (both for me and for you), and I don't want a repeat of that.

    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showt...post2053827013

    there will be a strong compulsion on any incoming labour gov't to get a quick-win on the 'sensible brexit' and the EU will be polishing their knives in anticipation.

    i don't trust labour, not least since I contend that we ended up with brexit precisely because blair sold-the-pass on the social chapter last time. so, bring on CPTPP asap before this shambles of a gov't collapses.
    Last edited by Furunculus; 01-04-2022 at 14:36.
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  15. #255
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Furunculus View Post
    This is essentially the same as your question to me about why I believe Nato is good but EU is bad, and the answer is the (practically) the same:

    One is an intergovernmental treaty with very limited treaty based obligations that don't touch on domestic societal management, where the other is a ceaseless iteration of further integration via supranational means that has an explicitly political ambition and touches deeply into how society functions.

    Of course labour could abrogate CPTPP, parliament is sovereign, but it would pay a political price to do so and would need to make its compromises with the EU openly. Good, the Social Chapter was a disaster in my opinion (both for me and for you), and I don't want a repeat of that.
    Does this mean that Brexit will indeed be a principal driver for how you vote? Ie. any attempt at, say, joining a customs union, will bring any party too close to the EU for your tastes and thus prompt a vote for the Tories.

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    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pannonian View Post
    Does this mean that Brexit will indeed be a principal driver for how you vote? Ie. any attempt at, say, joining a customs union, will bring any party too close to the EU for your tastes and thus prompt a vote for the Tories.
    It means that any incoming government proposing joining the customs unions in order to reduce "the border chaos by reducing regulatory checks" is either incompetent or mendacious, as 85% of the burden of border checks relate to single market regulations, not customs union regulations.

    I would struggle to vote for an incompetent/mendacious gov't that also seeks to govern in a way antithetical to my preferences.

    I have already said I would be happy with reintegration in some areas, e.g. REACH.

    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showt...post2053827013

    don't get me wrong, there are definitely areas where reintegration would be a good idea - REACH chemical regs for integrated supply chains FYI - but you have to understand why there was a single-market+customs-union+flanking-policies vs clean-break dichotomy.

    i.e. i'll take REACH, but not at any price.
    Last edited by Furunculus; 01-03-2022 at 11:09.
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  17. #257
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Lady Mone referred her husband's company to the VIP lane (whose members skip due scrutiny, supposedly meant for companies with a long history of relevant expertise) before it was even formally registered as a company. That company got £200 million in covid contracts in the end, despite civil servants being reluctant to include it in the VIP lane.

    Does this level of corruption mean anything to Tory voters? Or will "Get Brexit done" override all other concerns?

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    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Is that a rhetorical question, or do you expect responses here in the backroom?
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  19. #259
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Furunculus View Post
    Is that a rhetorical question, or do you expect responses here in the backroom?
    One might have thought it would be rhetorical, but there is plenty of evidence to indicate that it's not, and that Johnson sees continuing the Brexit debate as a winning tactic.

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    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    personally, i'm not so sure as i see the exit of frost as acknowledgement that a resolution is sought for NI - accepting the good enough rather than seeking the perfect.
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  21. #261
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    So there were parties at 10 Downing Street. 100 invitations sent for a "Bring Your Own Booze" party after the rule of no gatherings of more than 12 people allowed. Even some invitees were dubious about the propriety of this. 2 MPs recounted how they weren't allowed to visit dying relatives because they were following rules set by the PM, which the PM wasn't observing.

    Downing Street staff were advised to “clean up” their phones by removing information that could suggest lockdown parties were held at No 10, The Independent has been told.

    Two sources claim a senior member of staff told them it would be a “good idea” to remove any messages implying they had attended or were even aware of anything that could “look like a party”.
    ....
    One said they were “told to clean up their phone just in case” they had to hand it in to the investigation.

    A second said: “I was being leant on [during the discussion with a senior colleague] and told to get rid of anything that could look bad.”

    Both sources told The Independent they felt under pressure to delete communications and images.

    The claims that a senior member of staff directed junior colleagues to remove potential evidence contradicts an email, also sent in December, that instructed staff not to destroy any material that could prove pertinent to an investigation, criminal or otherwise.

    This was meant to refer to emails, WhatsApp messages, and calendar invitations, but it was allegedly not observed by some staff, many of whom conducted discussions via WhatsApp on their personal phones as well as work devices.
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/u...-b1991055.html

    Isn't this illegal?
    Last edited by Pannonian; 01-12-2022 at 00:22.

  22. #262
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    The Metropolitan Police say they will not investigate the Partygate affair unless directed to do so by Sue Gray, the government-appointed investigator (the previous investigator having resigned when it emerged that he was party to the affair). NB. the head of the Metropolitan Police is a family friend of the PM.

    Corruption is endemic in this government, with even the law being unwilling to hold them to it. Still, it matters not, as the government has a majority and that's all you need.

    PS. in addition to the PM saying that he didn't know it was a party (having previously denied its existence), now Jacob Rees Mogg, the (Tory) head of the Commons, argues that the rules weren't reasonable anyway and needn't have been followed. Is this a sufficient defence for any law breaker in the future, or does it only work for a government following the will of the people?

  23. #263
    Darkside Medic Senior Member rory_20_uk's Avatar
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    At the risk of being accused of "whattaboutism" yes this government is riddled with corruption. But that seems to be a reoccurring theme with both parties doing similar things when in power. Prior to (Sir) Tony, getting any information out of government was nigh on impossible since there was no mechanism to get any; after he initially instigated the FOI he very quickly adapted to his own rules by just not taking minutes at important meetings so there was nothing to provide when asked. Now of course departments rely on the loophole that if they think collating the information will be too hard they just don't have to do it. The only thing that can do anything about this is strategically focused on self preservation and tactically severing all ties to "Andy the child fu*ker".

    Basing everything on the Rule of Good Chaps and self-censoring is demonstrably not working now - this might just be that more information is being shared to the ruled rather than this being new. Personally I think that with power being removed from both the Lords and the Monarchy there is effectively unfettered power as long as you aren't seen as a liability at elections. Whether having a system where the only oversight was the Monarch and the Lords is a different question. I would say it is a rather risky one - but seemed to work better before one was neutered and the other was stacked full of ex-politicians.

    Will of the people? I'm sure you know that the last time the ruling government had a majority of people voting for them was in the 1950's. The whole concept of the police "policing by consent" is now just a phrase with no real meaning. Of course, with society becoming less homogenous in how it collectively thinks this was always going to be increasingly difficult but the approach seems to be increasingly to ignore everyone.

    An enemy that wishes to die for their country is the best sort to face - you both have the same aim in mind.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    Prior to (Sir) Tony, getting any information out of government was nigh on impossible since there was no mechanism to get any; after he initially instigated the FOI he very quickly adapted to his own rules by just not taking minutes at important meetings so there was nothing to provide when asked.
    on the general theme of a lack of mechanisms to hold the gov't to account; i wonder how much of this is the responsibility of labour and liberal constitutional tinkering?

    labour in getting rid of the old lords created a second chamber of placemen who owe their advancement to the executive. improving their 'legitimacy' to act on the one hand, while hugely eroding their ability to act with the other.

    lib-dems in creating the fixed-term-parliament act ripped out the role of the queen in dissolving a parliament. fixed terms have of course been repealed (thank god!), but the legitimate authority to oversea dissolution remains a deafening void.

    the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
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    Darkside Medic Senior Member rory_20_uk's Avatar
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    The Monarch never dissolved Parliament unless instructed to do. The Monarch is instructed on practically everything which in essence means the roles of President and PM are in one person.

    Reform of the Lords was the right thing to do. If the Monarch had as a consequence of this then ensured that those that were enobled were "deserving" in a meritocratic sense rather than stooge sense this would have been a step forward - a competent, technocratic chamber of experts. But our Monarch has spend decades doing nothing. Oh yes she is widely praised for her inaction as of course the Commons rather likes the lack of oversight and accountability.

    The road to hell might well be paved by good intentions but the road is walked is when those with power idly sit by and allow corruption to spread.

    An enemy that wishes to die for their country is the best sort to face - you both have the same aim in mind.
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    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    It [does] matter.

    The problems you mention are real, and I accept them, and yet the problem I highlight remains valid: if you're problem is a lack of checks and balances then you have to give [real] consideration to snipping out bits of what is a highly interdependent constitutional settlement:

    https://bylinetimes.com/2021/08/03/d...l-prerogative/
    In 1950, the King’s private secretary, Sir Alan Lascelles, set out three scenarios in which a monarch might refuse a general election.
    Text Description automatically generated

    These became known as the “Lascelles Principles”, but we could imagine other scenarios in which an election might properly be denied.

    For example, when the Opposition is in the middle of a leadership contest; or when it was intended to side-line Parliament during a moment of national crisis; or when there was reason to suspect electoral fraud or foreign interference.

    Under this system, the monarchy became the ’emergency brake’ of the constitution. It could not exercise these powers itself, but, in exceptional circumstances, it could prevent a government from deploying them. In effect, it could deny a Prime Minister access to the ‘nuclear weapons’ of the constitution, such as the power to declare war or to suspend Parliament.

    This was never a very satisfactory brake. It relied on a single individual, with no democratic authority, who might be inept, corrupt or Prince Andrew. It required a monarch to put their throne at risk, to defend institutions in which they had little personal stake. And, as Britain evolved from a ‘constitutional’ to a ‘ceremonial’ monarchy, it became more important to shield the monarch from political controversy than to protect the constitution from political harm.

    The reluctance of the monarchy to intervene in politics is broadly welcome. A democracy should not be dependent on an unelected, hereditary institution to protect it from the abuse of power. But it raises an important question: who, if anyone, should take over its constitutional functions?
    http://files.libertyfund.org/files/1714/0125_Bk.pdf

    A. V. Dicey states: “The necessity for dissolutions stands in close connection with the existence of Parliamentary sovereignty… Where Parliament is supreme, some further security for such harmony is necessary, and this security is given by the right of dissolution, which enables the Crown or the Ministry to appeal from the legislature to the nation.”

    Elsewhere, Dicey refers to examples of dissolution in 1784 and 1834 as examples of such a convention and argues this is a democratic necessity in a sovereign parliament, to argue that “the Cabinet, when supported by the Crown, and therefore possessing the power of dissolution, can defy the will of a House of Commons if the House is not supported by the electors.”
    https://socialsciences.mcmaster.ca/e...nstitution.pdf

    “The English system, therefore, is not an absorption of the executive power by the legislative power; it is a fusion of the two. Either the cabinet legislates and acts, or else it can dissolve. It is a creature, but it has the power of destroying its creators. It is an executive which can annihilate the legislature, as well as an executive which is the nominee of the legislature. It was made, but it can unmake; it was derivative in its origin, but it is destructive in its action.”

    In this arrangement, while Parliament has, in Dicey’s words, “the right to make or unmake any law whatever,” the Executive has ample powers as well. Rigid statutory requirements for exercising dissolution powers risk triggering actions that might escalate a political crisis into a constitutional crisis.

    For instance, by making dissolution and calling an election more difficult the Fixed Term Parliament Act might make using alternative prerogative powers, such as prorogation, more attractive to government. Whilst the prerogative power for dissolution was removed, the Fixed Term Parliament Act explicitly avoided the topic of prorogation of parliament, as Section 6(1) explicitly states: “This Act does not affect Her Majesty’s power to prorogue Parliament.”
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

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