I received a letter on Saturday morning from the Speaker of the House of Commons in relation to the recent attempt by ‘Liberal’ Democrat Vince Cable to interfere in the the internal processes of small opposition parties.
Mr Bercow’s letter was very short – ‘I have no comment to make’.
I believe that Mr Bercow has confused his role as guardian of the rights and privilges of the 650 odd members of Parliament with his role as chair of the Speakers Committee with the Electoral Commission which has been charged with encouraging participation in the Democratic process.
Basically looking after the welfare of 650 and their priviliges seems to be the sole concern of these gentlemen, the rest of us can go hang.
The last speaker, Speaker Martin, spent a huge amount of effort protecting the ‘ honourable members’ from the scrutiny of the media and Heather Brooke in particular in relation to their fraudulent expense claims.
This current Speaker is yet another pale shadow of Speakers past, including Speaker Lenthall . Bercow almost universally derided by the Conservatives and put in place by Labour members just to annoy the Conservatives. Vermis Sum indeed
I was directed to a new book recently ‘Democracy, The God that failed’. When you see what some of our greater political thinkers thought of Democracy, you can understand why the question is now being asked when not if is democracy is going to fail.
“Two wolves and a sheep deciding what’s for dinner” — a clever metaphorical descriptor of pure democracy sometimes attributed to that wellspring of clever metaphorical descriptors Benjamin Franklin. Other founding fathers were less clever and less metaphorical on democracy than Mr. Franklin, but just as damning nonetheless:
“A simple democracy … is one of the greatest of evils.” — Benjamin Rush, signer of the Declaration of Independence
“Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.” — John Adams
“Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security, or the rights of property; and have, in general, been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths.” — James Madison
The most telling paragraph in the Mises review of ‘ What is so great about representative democracy’ was this-
Indeed, the representatives, whose very charge is to deliberate the issues as agents, have long ago abdicated their charge to the labour-saving wonders of delegation: our elected representatives employ tens of thousands of bureaucratic committees and myrmidons to consider and enforce that which they either cannot or will not consider and enforce. The consequence — intended or not — is a government able to invade every crevice of private life while allowing elected representatives to live an unaccountable, leisurely, gerrymander-assured existence.
Sound familiar ?
I pondered this as I watched thousands of students demanding massive state aid for their education, and I was frankly apalled that some of these students could barely string any sentences together that did not include the word ‘fuck’ or ‘you know wot I mean’.
Caught as I was between being pleased that the young are getting off their bean bags to care about something other than ‘X factor’ and the wrong headedness of their cause, the demonstration I saw was nothing short of demanding money with menaces. I heard a radio phone in later from some woman who said ‘when we are old and want money for care homes, the young will remember that we stabbed them in the back and not give it’.
So at the end of the day, bureaucratic Fabianism is just about allocating diminishing resources, and ‘democracy’ is about the worst way of allocating those resources. It is the medieval approach to warfare, the biggest crowd with the most weapons wins, irrespective of argument.
Forty per cent of the population now no longer bother to vote because there is no point. The bigger crowd in their area will always win, representative democracy is already on the wane, failing prey to special interest groups.
The inevitable result is that we will go one of two ways, devolving power down to as near the individual with low taxes, freedom and the ability to choose what services you wish to pay for, or and this is the more likely, a centralised authoritarian state absorbing more money for less services, but maintaining a vast bureaucratic infrastructure, headed by a few political ‘families’ forming a political elite.
Not something to look forward to.