Labour deputy leadership contest

Having spent some time on Supervoc and her ways, time to begin the appreciation of other contenders.  IN late January Peter Hain confirmed his intention to run for the post of Labour deputy leader.  Here is a picture of him entering the fray.  I am still trying to work out which Doctor Who villain/monster he looks like (suggestions gratefully received)

 Hain sets out five key areas in his campaign:

“• Saving Our Environment – and ensuring we are the greens not just the reds of British politics
Extending Social Justice & Equality – and narrowing the gap between rich and poor
Protecting Civil Liberties – and getting the balance right with security
Renewing Our Democracy – including devolving power wherever possible
Restoring Our Place In Europe – and ensuring our foreign policy is rooted in our place at the heart of Europe”

To a liberal these sound quite interesting, especially the third.  However, when pursued further it is the same old same old: “while remaining tough on security, we need to ensure we do not sacrifice hard fought for civil liberties, and get the right balance between the power of the state and the freedoms of the citizen.”  Perhaps Mr Hain would explain if this would involve stepping back from control orders, detention without charge or trial, and the other delights so reminiscent of apartheid South Africa (which Hain so vehemently opposed) introduced by his party while he has sat in the Cabinet .

He has elucidated the fourth point further and has a ten point plan available on his website to renew democracy.  The ten points are:

Agree a new settlement between the executive and parliament
Complete Lords reform and create a democratically elected Senate
Ensure a more representative parliament 
Introduce votes and automatic voter registration at 16
 Introduce a fairer voting system
(before 

 gets excited he means the Alternative Vote not STV)
Introduce compulsory voting
Strengthen local government
Encourage neighbourhood democracy
(the Jim Hacker option)
Promote English regional government
Increase regional accountability to parliament

Some of these things sound quite appealing.  However, Hain’s good work is undone with two words.  Under the list of supporters it says “Shaun Woodward”.

 

Advertisements

About loveandgarbage

I watch the telly and read when not doing law stuff and plugging my decade and a half old unwatched Edinburgh fringe show.
This entry was posted in deputy leader, peter hain, politics, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Labour deputy leadership contest

  1. lonemagpie says:

    Complusory voting will only be a good idea if there’s a “none of the above” option.
    And does anybody else hate the phrase “democratically elected Senate”? Apart from being too American, the whole point of having two Houses is so that the lot of elected politicos and the other lot check and balance each other. Make the second House just another lot of MPs from the same parties, and, well…
    But I’m biased, having always said the second House should be filled with ordinary people selected at random, a la jury service… (or, that local councils should be chosen that way, and the second House elected or appointed from those councillors)

    • Complusory voting will only be a good idea if there’s a “none of the above” option.
      I agree – although I suspect the NOne of the ABove box is something politicians will avoid for fear of one inevitable consequence 😉

      And does anybody else hate the phrase “democratically elected Senate”? Apart from being too American, the whole point of having two Houses is so that the lot of elected politicos and the other lot check and balance each other. Make the second House just another lot of MPs from the same parties, and, well…

      There was a discussion about this on burkesworks livejournal during the week. He is a LIb Dem and asked various questions about the vote in the COmmons. My own view is that the advantages of the Lords (such as they are) come from expertise and I would be keen to see bodies such as the Royal Society or BMA sending representatives – so that when various matters are considered there are experts present that can comment intelligently on it, rather than being led by the tabloid agenda. I’m a lawyer (an over-represented bunch in Parliament) but it would be nice to see matters regaridng science informed by real scientists, as opposed to the spurious pseudo-science that drives media headlines.
      But I’m biased, having always said the second House should be filled with ordinary people selected at random, a la jury service… (or, that local councils should be chosen that way, and the second House elected or appointed from those councillors)
      I think I recall a Borges or Calvino story where this is done. Would it make a good basis for worldbuilding in a story/novel?

  2. cribbins says:

    To be honest, Hain looks more like a Goomba from the movie version of Super Mario Brothers to me, though I suppose the Bandril ambassador from Timelash might suffice.

Leave a Reply to peeeeeeet Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s