Geoffrey Cox—our plummy voiced Attorney General has described the now non-prorogued parliament as ‘dead.’ In other words, he finds himself beyond the grave, but in it. Perhaps he seeks to be disinterred. There are many times when being in parliament felt like death, which is to say when a government with a large majority gets on with relatively non-controversial legislation everybody just gets their head down, looking for career opportunities or perhaps finds time to pursue personal policy goals.
Then you have something like going to war cropping up. Then parliament comes alive, with packed chambers and heated debate-within limits of course. The anti-Iraq war opposition, given Tory support for the government was doomed to failure from day one. The debate was had with a foregone conclusion. Did that make parliament dead? Given what had happened on the streets outside the Palace of Westminster, the answer must be yes, parliament has its debates but the course of events as prescribed by the executive continues unabated.
Now we seem to be in a different situation, which is the exact opposite. Cox, aware of a shift in power wants parliament to be dead. He doesn’t seem to understand that at its best parliament cannot be ruled, it has a need, a duty to be unruly. That’s the job it should perform. I can only hope that this whole period of the useless f*****g Brexit crisis invigorates our institutions of governance. They bloody need it. And the population at large hopefully may get a better grip on what democracy entails, rather than having simplistic notions of democracy as a tick box exercise in binary options.
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