Wednesday, May 25, 2011

John Hemming MP, Another Lib Dem Buffoon

Lord knows there are enough already, but John Hemming has now added to the number of known Lib Dem buffoons. MPs are elected to represent us and to legislate, not use the House of Commons to indulge their insatiable egos.

If you don't know Hemming is the MP who abused parliamentary privilege to name Ryan Giggs as the footballer who had his privacy protected with a superinjunction. Regardless of the rights and wrongs of the superinjunction, and I think they are pretty horrendous, why should MPs of all people be allowed to flout the law and get away with it? If MPs can flout laws they don't like then why can't I? My view of Ryan Giggs is that he's been a fool, should have taken his medicine and got on with it. If he had done that the embarrassment would have been over weeks ago.

Of course the problem with Lib Dems is that they seem to think they are morally superior to us mere mortals, hence Hemming pulling a cheap stunt like he did. Hence why Chris Huhne is making such a fool of himself. Hence why Vince Cable is making such a fool of himself. Hence why the Lib Dems were wiped out earlier this month in the local elections, and will be slaughtered at the next general election.

Interesting to see that it has taken a member of the House of Lords to confront the issue of superinjunctions with dignity. Lord Wakeham has written the following letter which appears in the Telegraph:

Dear Sir,
The Prime Minister is right to say that the current situation with regard to privacy injunctions is “unsustainable” and to highlight that the problem is not one of the judiciary’s making because they are simply interpreting the law as it stands.
At the time the legislation was going through Parliament, I predicted that this intolerable state of affairs would inevitably flow from the way in which the European Convention on Human Rights was incorporated into our domestic law through the Human Rights Act. It was clear to me that because Parliament was relinquishing control of the issue, the resulting law would inevitably go further than we wished – despite the fact that Jack Straw, when Home Secretary, said that the legislation was not intended to create a general law of privacy – because the Courts would be forced to hand out increasing numbers of injunctions. And the reason for that is that in privacy matters, unlike in libel, the Courts inevitably err on the side of the applicant when considering whether to grant an injunction, and not on the side of a newspaper. That is the root of the inherent “unfairness” the Prime Minster referred to, and why this shambles has arisen.
Section 12 of the Human Rights Act attempted to enshrine in law the PCC’s common sense Code of Practice which protects an individual’s right to privacy as well as defining the public interest which justifies intrusion, with a view to cases being sorted out by the Commission and not the Courts. It has clearly failed to deliver that goal and the problem needs urgently addressing.
There are no palliative routes. The Courts cannot sort this matter out on their own. Nor is the answer simply in “strengthening” the Press Complaints Commission, which already has considerable powers but is often unable to deploy them because it is too frequently bypassed for the Courts in high profile cases. Instead the Human Rights Act may have to be amended, possibly by limiting the role of the Courts to dealing with issues that impact only on public authorities and the State (as the drafters of the Convention envisaged). That would leave the media outside the direct supervision of the Courts on privacy issues and enable the PCC – which can react much more swiftly to changes in newspaper technology than the law will ever be able to do so - to reassert its primacy in this area, as Parliament always intended.
Yours faithfully
Lord Wakeham
(Chairman, Press Complaints Commission, 1995-2001)
House of Lords, London, SW1
So of course the Lib Dems want to wreck the House of Lords:

The Liberal Democrats are another party whose desire to radically reform the House of Lords goes back a long way.
They were the last government to seriously reform the House of Lords when the passed the 1911 Parliament Act, which dramatically reduced peer power.
In their submission to the Royal Commission they set out plans for a directly-elected "Senate" made up of 261 members.
The Senators would be elected from across the UK using the massive constituencies used in the European elections.
Elections would be held every two years with a third of the senate being elected at each poll.
Predictably for the Liberal Democrats the elections would be held under proportional representation.
From the BBC website.

No wonder the few remaining Lib Dem activists are foaming at the mouth about their party joining the Coalition, now they are in the full glare of publicity, being junior partners in government, we can all see what they are really like.

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