Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Hannan Effect?

Perhaps this is the wrong name for this, but is what we saw this week the beginning of a wide backlash in some quarters of Western Society from the increasingly oppressive state structures we live within?

Lets informally take a look for a minute.

We have in the UK at the moment a structure which see's a man holding the Executive position and Royal Prerogative who was not elected to this position. He was not elected in a General Election, he did not even have an internal Labour Party election. He was elected by his constituents as as an MP, who was holding the role and continued to hold the role of Chancellor at the time.

In that election Labour published a manifesto which stated that the country would be consulted on the EU Constitution. By way of a name change, this Treaty was not put to a referendum, but secured passage through a tightly whipped, poorly debated few sessions of Parliament. The EU had the opportunity to open its institutions up to be Democratic, but it did not do this. Instead the new structures take away what little accountability there was by securing a wider legislative remit, by weakening the influence of member states, and by making this treaty self amending (thus no further consultation from member states on its size and actions is required).

The EU by admission makes about 75% of all laws (Though higher proportions have in the past been argued) yet these laws emanate from a commission where the UK has but one voice in 27, until recently that voice was the much mistrusted Peter Mandleson and is now held by Baroness Ashton.

The EU Commission is charged as the "Executive Branch" of the EU, it is also the body which proposes Legislation, implements decisions (usually its own decisions) and upholds the law on existing treaties.

The EU Parliament gets to vote on EU laws, it is made up of 785 MEP. It is the only elected part of the five structure EU. The UK has 78 MEPs all of whom are elected via Single Transferable Voting. This system means, that if you want to vote for say Daniel Hannan in the upcoming elections you can't, you can only indicate a preference for him or indicate Daniel within an order of preference on your ballot.

Once a candidate has secured sufficient votes, they stop counting for that candidate and transfer surplus and unused votes according to the stated preferences on the ballot. I may be in the minority here, but the requirement of a hare or droop quota in counting votes, rather than simply counting votes does not seem very transparent or representative to me. It might be why EU elections regularly see a low turn out across Europe. But those that are elected, represent less than 10% of the vote in the EU Parliament, and less than 10% of the argument.

Anyway I digress.

We have 75% of laws coming from a fairly undemocratic system in the EU.

We have an unelected, unmandated Prime Minister who is spending us in to debt deeper and faster than Winston Churchill (who had the small matter of World War 2 to tend to.)

We have a toothless, greedy Parliament, one house of which is largely appointed the rest inherited. The other half is elected, but most members upon election seek to please their Party Whip before their constituents.

The Party in Government is not willing to stand up to its leader, so has decided to play out its final year milking as much money for ill gotten houses and ridding us of yet more constitutional protections.

We have a state broadcaster, drip feeding us no dissenting conservative opinions, except those it can control and shout down. They purport to lead, and others have followed in the MSM by denying political debates from happening on TV and in our media.

Who makes the decisions and laws that effect us all every day? It is not you and me, there is now a political class that makes all decisions. It is only every interrupted by those who find a way to make themselves heard and who provide a message that instantly resonates. We have, in effect a democratic defecit.

So when Daniel Hannan was permitted the opportunity to stand up and given three minutes uninterrupted, despite all that is stacked up in its way, despite the continued attempts to silence, a majority, conservative, rational opinion was heard. And appreciated.

Looking at You Tube now this video has had 1,359,382 views in 3 days. He is somebody the BBC claims he is an unknown (despite having been invited on the Daily Politics a week earlier). The MSM has largely ignored it. It has only shown it (in the UK) when a prepared argument against Daniel and his words was in place. Daniel made a speech that was so sorely needed that people have gone out of their way, and found a way past the established media to watch it nearly 1.4million times. It was 2pm Friday before the BBC finally put it on their website and that was after many emails of complaint.

Could what we have witnessed this week be described as "The Hannan Effect" whereby no matter how hard an establishment tries to deny and hide a political argument, and present only alternatives that seek the same end; that that dissenting voice will always find a way to be heard in some form. And that it will be sought and defended in equal measure to the contempt shown in the measures in which were used to hide it? I am sure this has been seen before in countries that have and do not have elected representation. But in this case, the new medium is not symbolism, anti-propaganda leaflets or pirate radio, it was the Internet.

We are unaccustomed to seeing such a response to a speech. But it was a really good speech, and it rang true for a lot of people, and was seized upon by the American political right, whose Republican Party is straining to coherently present an opposition voice to President Obama and the Democrats.

Perhaps, perhaps not. I enjoyed the speech, I have joined those in telling Daniel that on his blog, and I think I am not alone in hoping that this can galvanise all dissenting opinions to our governments here, and in Europe to reverse these crazy plans to make us more indebted, to make it harder for our voices and opinions to be heard and to accept that a fundamental tenant of capitalism is that risk can reap reward, but also failure. Those who fail must as a general rule be allowed to do so. Those who failed in their leadership of banks should be civilly investigated to probe for illegalities which should be identified and punished through the courts.

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