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Sunday, April 12, 2009

On politics and those e-mails

With the whole of politics seemingly mired in sleaze and scandal over expense claims and dirty tricks I think that it is only right that I try to strike a positive note this morning. After all this devalued currency that we call politics is the basis of our democracy.

Once we start to lose confidence in the democratic process and start to embrace individuals and parties who claim to offer a quick fix, but in fact represent a descent into a moralising authoritarian abyss, then our very freedoms come under threat.

Politics has become populated by a breed of activist who does not believe in boundaries, who thinks that anything is fair game if it gains them an advantage and who puts the personal above the best interests of the people they are supposed to represent.

Many of these are unelected, some are self appointed. They inhabit the fringes of power, they lurk both openly and anonymously on the internet and they use its reach to break into the mainstream media. It does not benefit any elected politician in my view to try and grab hold of their tail in the hope of scoring a hit on their opponents. All they are doing is alienating people still further.

My constituents want to hear what I and my party will do to improve the quality of their lives, to tackle the recession and to provide decent schools and hospitals for their family. Our role is to debate those issues and to find solutions. I am sad this morning that we have become embroiled instead in a frenzied blood-letting that achieves nothing and undermines that vital conversation with our electors.
it's time Welsh Labour... no, ALL the Welsh parties- distanced themselves from London. Of course we still need MPs at the moment, but AMs and Councillors should seek to make their own way in the world.
The House of Commons a democracy? Thanks to FPTP and the whips forcing executive domination on the legislature, it's all about representing a few thousand voters in marginal seats, picking between just two individuals who have, at worst, bullied a handful of trades unionists into selecting them for a safe seat and a few hundred fellow MPs into not allowing a leadership contest. How can anyone be expected to have confidence in such a rotten system? Its got to the stage where one often has to thank the House of Lords for defending democratic ideals!

Such rotten systems only encourage the sort of politics we have witnessed this weekend. With no constitutional position for genuine democratic debate about real issues, that retreats into wonkishness, and the resultant vacuum is filled by cheap, defamatory nonsense.

The nonsense is only the tail on the undemocratic dog.

Here in Wales, we have a somewhat better system, but there is still the danger of rottenness from the failure to extricate the executive from the legislature. We need to move quickly to resolve this.

And I agree, Al Iguana, but I suspect that will happen naturally: not even Welsh Labour will want to commit electoral suicide forever.
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