Monday, October 29, 2007

British Sovereignty and the Referendum imperative



Members of Parliament are lent the powers of their constituents and they have to return those powers undiminished at the end. It is not for Members of Parliament to give away the powers that were lent to them, because they don’t belong to Members of Parliament but to the electorate.

Today's intelligent and erudite contribution comes from the Rt Hon Tony Benn. Cranmer has nothing to add. This is a marvellous speech; replete with insight from the undeniable perspective of the experience of years. It makes Cranmer want this democrat, great parliamentarian, and wonderful orator back in Parliament. But Kensington?

11 Comments:

Anonymous Alexandrian said...

Good speech.

I liked the quotation "Manifestos only last for a couple of years."

29 October 2007 at 09:36  
Blogger Wrinkled Weasel said...

I have alwayss been a TB fan.

His points about Mandelson ring true. By any standards, Mandy is a self-serving weasel (i should know)and he is our unelected rep in Europe.

Not having a referendum is bringing our democracy to the level of Stalinism.

29 October 2007 at 13:32  
Anonymous nedsherry said...

Wrinkled Weasel said...

I have always been a TB fan.

His points about Mandelson ring true. By any standards, Mandy is a self-serving weasel (i should know)...


Perhaps TB should know too. He's certainly charismatic and likeable, but many dangerous and dishonest men are. Watch how this great democrat and parliamentarian responds to a simple question about his past:

How do you reconcile being the greatest exponent of democracy with your historical support for Mao, and the Soviet bloc? PAUL BROWN, CROUCH END, LONDON

History will record the Mao period as a dynasty like the Ming and the Tang and I suppose the foundation of the new China had something to do with Mao's achievement in getting rid of foreign domination. The Soviet Union was invaded by Britain just after the revolution and the Second World War could have been avoided if the Anglo-Soviet alliance had been built then. The Soviet Union was our ally when America was still neutral and the sacrifices of the Russian people helped to turn the tide against Hitler.

http://the-osterley-times.blogspot.com/2006/06/tony-benn-you-ask-questions.html

Not having a referendum is bringing our democracy to the level of Stalinism.

That should be all to the good, then, from TB's point of view.

29 October 2007 at 17:13  
Anonymous invincibly ignorant said...

I'm with NedSherry

A broken clock is right twice a day but is a useless waste of space at all other times

Does Cranmer have feet of clay?

29 October 2007 at 19:10  
Blogger Greg said...

A few useful comments in a speech that I found rambling, and almost incoherent at times. I don't think this helps the democratic cause.

29 October 2007 at 19:12  
Blogger Cranmer said...

His Grace never said he agreed with the Rt Hon Tony Benn on every matter (he's a Socialist for goodness' sake) and neither did he say this particular speech was an example of his oratorical skill: it is somewqhat extempore, yet its content and sentiment strike exactly the right note.

And His Grace has feeet of ash, and has done so since that fateful day.

29 October 2007 at 19:48  
Blogger Snuffleupagus said...

Your Grace! You do make me laugh. I was wondering how you could possibly be a fan of Tony Benn, given his politics. I rate him highly. He is brilliant and clever. He is rather like you. And that's the point, Nedsherry, Invincibly Ignorant, and Greg, His Grace is not so one-tracked in his thoughts. He can be Conservative, while acknowledging talent in those who may not always think like him. It is by being open-minded like His Grace that arguments move forward and people learn from each other. Being blinkered all the time doesn't get anyone anywhere.

And I do not say this to insult you. I too, was confused when I first read the post, forgetting how His Grace is able to supersede silly political labels and deal with truth instead. We would all do well to take a page out his book.

29 October 2007 at 21:57  
Blogger Wrinkled Weasel said...

Nedsherry..

I am not a Marxist or a Bennite Socialist. I am a Christian Libertarian and most of my views
would be considered right-wing.

From that point of view I sort my politicians into those with principles and those without. I believe Tony Benn falls into the former category. That is why I am a fan. I am also a Eurosceptic.

Benn has said that he sorts politicians into "weather vanes" and "signposts" which to me is pretty much the same as "principled" and "unprincipled".

As for your material about his opinions on history; not all of us have a Eurocentric or American view, or at least we understand there are alternatives.

You argument suggests that our history, our heritage and our culture gives the only correct perspective on the state of the world and I do not.

Though the Russians had Stalinism, we had The Cromwell Family, who, for my money were no better than the Borgias. I believe we are further down the road to civilisation than the Russians are, and we do not have a societal desire to be ruled by despots, but that's about it. The economic systems had moral equivalence; only in application does this diverge.

So really, what I am saying is that party politics is irrelevant. I vote for whoever seems honest and open about what they believe - someone who will keep their promises, over issues of national importance, for example, such as a referendum on the EU treaty. I have clear lines I will not cross, such as voting, in the near future for supporters of the Iraq war or those who promote abortion on demand etc. (FWIW I voted SNP last time - Alex Salmond is anti-war and pro-life - so I should have credit for being consistent!)

nb:

Tony Benn was a popular constituency MP for over 50 years. During that time he avoided any hint of scandal or nest-feathering. Isn't that an achievement worthy of resepect?

30 October 2007 at 13:51  
Anonymous nedsherry said...

Wrinkled Weasel writes:

I sort my politicians into those with principles and those without. I believe Tony Benn falls into the former category.

Please tell me what principles were at work in the answer I quoted from TB. He was weaselling about his support for mass murderers.

That is why I am a fan. I am also a Eurosceptic.

As am I. Benn's arguments against Europe are good, but he remains both dangerous and dishonest.

30 October 2007 at 15:43  
Blogger Wrinkled Weasel said...

The Americans are mass murderers too, and for the oiliest of reasons.

We must differ, nedsherry and move on. I cannot add more.

30 October 2007 at 16:18  
Anonymous invincilbly ignorant said...

''The Americans are mass murderers too''
There, laid bare for all to see, a post of such utter and complete intellectual and moral vacuity and vapidity that it will be very difficult, if impossible, to beat.

It is no surprise that you are a fan of Benn

And people like you get to vote.
oh dear

30 October 2007 at 18:19  

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