November 4, 2016

Brexiteers’ contempt for judicial independence

Brexiteers’ contempt for judicial independence

The Tory Party is nothing if it does not respect, defend and fight for an independent judiciary, says Peter Bingle.

The feigned outrage by the right-wing media and pro-Brexit politicians does them no credit. Headlines such as ‘The judges versus the people’ are not only preposterous, they undermine the very arguments used by Brexiteers during the campaign on returning power to the British Parliament and upholding the Rule of Law.

In Iolanthe WS Gilbert poked fun at the judiciary yet his views and observations are just as relevant now as they were in 1880s. As the Lord Chancellor sings in his famous patter song: ‘The law is the true embodiment of everything that’s excellent. It has no kind of fault or flaw and I, my Lords, embody the law.’

So it must surely be the case that – as the judiciary in the form of three of our most senior judges is harangued by the media and politicians – the Lord Chancellor Liz Truss is touring every radio and television studio defending the judgment and upholding the Rule of Law. Her silence is deafening and shocking. In Gilbertian terms she is more Mad Margaret in Ruddigore than a Lord Chancellor of distinction.

The Tory Party is nothing if it does not respect, defend and fight for an independent judiciary. It is worth pointing out that the judgment had nothing to do with the argument about leaving or remaining in the EU. It was centred purely on a point of law, namely whether under our constitutional settlement the government had to consult both Houses of Parliament rather than use the Royal Prerogative over the triggering of Article 50. On this occasion the government lost the argument. Perhaps they will fare better at the Supreme Court where this case was always destined to end up.

Imagine if the government wins the day at the Supreme Court. Will the same editors and politicians who are now baying for blood suddenly discover a fondness and respect for an independent judiciary? This is dangerous stuff and we simply can’t adopt a pick and choose approach to legal judgments. We either support the Rule of Law or we embrace anarchy.

One of the Brexiteers’ main fears of Parliament being involved in the triggering of Article 50 is the likely sceptical attitude of the House of Lords in which the government does not have a majority. Sorry but that is how democracy works and with a hopeless Labour Opposition in the House of Commons it is no bad thing for the government’s case to come under detailed scrutiny.

Again, WS Gilbert was being very perceptive when one of his characters Lord Mountararat in Iolanthe stated: ‘The House of Peers throughout the war did nothing in particular and did it very well …’ Tories and newspaper editors need to refrain from attacking the House of Lords simply because it is doing its job.

We are not yet in a constitutional crisis and if wiser heads prevail we never will be. If the hotheads get their way, however, such a crisis may eventually engulf us. A general election then becomes inevitable.

At times like it is a national tragedy that we no longer have a great political figure such as Lord Hailsham as Lord Chancellor. He truly was the embodiment of the law. Is Liz Truss?

2.92 avg. rating (59% score) - 25 votes
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Peter Bingle
Peter is the Founder of Terrapin Communications. With a career in politics and communications that has spanned almost four decades, he is one of the country's leading public affairs practitioners. His career has seen him advise many top companies, including McDonald’s, HSBC, L’Oreal, Permira, Motorola, Camelot, Rolls Royce & Kellogg's.
  • Shadow Warrior

    Hammond is continuity Brown. He is a hand-wringing lefty looking for clever wheezes to raise more tax in ways that people don’t immediately notice.

  • captainslugwash

    I predict the Budget will attempt to show the Left how caring the Tories are, and it will be funded by screwing over the working man.
    If Corp Tax comes down, I bet Divi tax will be going up.
    I would love to be wrong.

  • skynine

    We really need to look at tax credits, in particular in work tax credits that encourage people to work part time to preserve the benefits. 45% of women work part time and I would hazard a guess that tax credits are the main cause. This leads to low pay, low skill work in supermarkets and the retail sector including coffee shops. The government needs to get back to the employer paying people to do a job for economic reasons rather than to get onto the tax credit ladder. Like all government benefits it distorts the market and diverts government expenditure into non productive areas.
    The refrain that the government has cut expenditure is not true, it increases every year as more and more goes into welfare.

  • MrVeryAngry

    fat chance

  • MrSauce

    So, when wouldn’t we want a ‘budget for growth’?

  • Rob

    I note that the UK Government has just slapped on a 25% tax charge for anyone moving abroad and wishing to move out their private pension from the UK.

  • SonofBoudica

    The Remoaners will do their utmost to sabotage the Government’s negotiating position. They do not want a successful outcome; they want a failure. They want to be able to scream “Told you so!” from the rooftops.

  • EnglandLaments

    Thank goodness for Andrew Neil, the one media hack who scares the pants off the established politicians. He was spot on with Heidi Allen!

  • joshuafalken

    I had a very long, hard, studied and considered look at the hope, care and aspirations of all Europeans, before I voted to get the UK out of the toxic grasp of Brussels.

    The European Union and it’s charge of “ever closer union” has borrowed and spent its way to oblivion, whilst enslaving the working and middle classes in debt.

    The central control mantra of the unaccountable Brussels ruling elite, delivered through a mixture of socialism, globalism and corporatism is entirely responsible for the populist revolt by the millions of “Just About Managings” across Europe.

    We must remember the ultimate goal of socialists, globalists and corporatists is control, not prosperity. see https://mises.org/blog/goal-socialists-socialism-—-not-prosperity.

    Social equality and economic growth always fail under central control and fighting against the Brussels doctrine on behalf of all Europeans is why I voted for Brexit.

    Britain has a long history of helping Europeans depose tyrants and Brussels is just the latest incarnation.

    Britain is the most racially advanced and accepting society on the planet. We welcome those in need and those that can help us with open arms and a smile; that will not change.

    We are also one of the most innovative, talented and open societies in the world, which why everyone wants to live here. However, we cannot fit everyone in, so we have to have clear, balanced and fair immigration policy which is where the arguments start between the monetarists and humanists will never be reconciled.

    I thought long and hard before coming to the conclusion that leaving the EU was in the best interest of all Europeans, as Brussels is toxic and cannot be reformed from within.

    Also, I find it insulting that people who voted Remain have insufficient faith in British ingenuity, compassion and skill to get a good deal for us and see the Europe that we love get a better deal from Brussels and the reform that European people deserve. https://mishtalk.com/2017/03/29/bad-brexit-deal-better-than-no-deal-mathematical-idiocy-odds-of-no-deal/ and https://www.worldheadlines.info/2017/03/after-brexit-9-reasons-to-be-bullish-on-great-britain/

    The politics of left verses right are dead because neither have delivered the promised economic growth and social mobility for anyone, but themselves. The populists are not selfish per-se, they just want to take back control of their own destiny that left/right politicians have freely given away and/or exploited for their own ends. In my constituency, the local residents group are taking over the councils as politicians ignore voters, so Westminster should beware of the well-organised, local resident independents at the next election. This is a peoples revolution which should be shouted from the rooftops, but liberals remained deafened by the socialist, globalist and corporatist “vested interests” that have spectacularly failed us and are obediently crying foul and fake.

    There will be an initial unpalatable inflationary cost to fighting globalism and rolling back central control that few appear to have factored in, but dismantling failed left/right vested interests should eventually free libertarian socially-conservative capitalism from the shackles of TBTF corporatism to feed economic growth and social mobility.

  • agdpa

    The EU usually makes the wrong decision – on immigration, on freedom of movement, on the euro, on the Ukraine, etc. etc. Little hope it will get Brexit right.

  • brownowl

    Eh? Reference please!

  • Neil2

    Sod caring. Screw the spongers and breeders. Kill HS2. Stop all “green” subsidies. Slash “foreign aid” and walk away from the EUSSR with immediate effect.

  • Rob
  • John C

    What a confused article. It conflates surveillance by the security services with poor defences against fraud.

  • John C

    Err, it’s the UK that’s leaving the EU, not vice versa.

  • John C

    Me, now. ‘Growth’ is a manic obsession.

  • La Face Nord

    Mr Redwood – are you aware of the Biased BBC website? It’s been exposing their agenda for a long time, but I imagine you’ve been well aware of the BBC’s agenda for quite some time…

  • Contact Rvtech

    The post is great

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