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Is the government undermining our democracy? Part 1

(54 Posts)
Dinahmo Wed 17-Mar-21 00:15:19

I believe that it is because of the reduction of time given to parliamentary scrutiny of proposed legislation.

My first example is the policing bill currently going through parliament. The govt unveiled the 300 page bill one week before its first reading - hardly sufficient time for it to be thoroughly digested.

This bill includes an increase in prison sentences for people found guilty of attacking statues, thus making the sentences longer than those handed down for attacking women.

The bill also includes plans to put plain clothes police officers in night clubs in order to improve security and protect women. I would have thought that officers on the beat generate a better feeling of security. A supporter of this is Tommy Robinson who has been raising groups of volunteers to protect statues during the BLM demonstrations, including a statue of George Eliot.

Lastly the bill increases police powers to stop protests on grounds including noise and disruption to the public. Having lived in Brixton during the 80s riots (just off Railton Road, so close to the centre) I am very much aware of how the powers to stop and search were regularly abused. I also remember hearing Frederick Raphael on Any Questions describing ow he was stopped by the police when driving through Essex in a Jaguar - no reason given. More recently, the new Archbishop of York has spoken of his time as Bishop of Stepney when driving he was stopped on several occasions because he's black and only black crooks drive expensive cars. (I'm paraphrasing here)

My second example is the proposed introduction of voter ID, supposedly to stop voter fraud. Apparently 11 million people in the UK do not have a passport or a driving license. In the UK GE of 2019 there were 34 allegations of people pretending to be someone else at polling stations, compared with 58 million who voted legitimately. This really is an example of a steamroller to crack a nut, and an expensive one too.

NotSpaghetti Wed 17-Mar-21 12:46:06

I also remember Tony Blair with sadness and dismay. The Iraq war was a crime as far as I can see.

Now we have Johnson who is YES, undermining our democracy.
He and his cronies have a cavalier attitude to all that I feel is good in this country.

Regarding the warheads, gypsy communities, ID cards, police powers, street lights, protest, and safety etc. each of these us worthy of it's own post. Sadly, the onslaught is such that some of us are exhausted. We have written to our MPs, voted, lobbied, linked with various causes - but just like the Iraq War - in our hearts we know it's to no no avail.

Grany Wed 17-Mar-21 15:11:42

“Despite the High Court ruling in our favour last month that Matt Hancock had broken the law in failing to publish pandemic contracts, the failures continue,” say Good Law Project.

They’re talking about further details of unpublished PPE contracts that came to light in a BBC report this week.

The report focused on the owner of a dog food firm who brokered PPE deals worth £258m between the Government and a Hong Kong firm, earning herself at least £1m.

Good Law Project launched new legal action yesterday to challenge the Government’s continued failure to publish contracts.

They are also challenging the Government’s decision "to obscure the key provisions in contracts", with many of those being published in heavily redacted form. They say that some contracts do not even show what was purchased or at what price.

The Director of Good Law Project, Jolyon Maugham asks: “If they have nothing to hide, why won’t they publish?” Read more here.

Grany Wed 17-Mar-21 15:17:03