Baronesse Lawrence? – What a Farce!

What is happening in Britain that just about anyone can end up in the House of Lords? I cannot believe that the idiot Ed Miliband has decided that the mother of murder victim Stephen Lawrence be made a Baroness and have the right to sit in the House as a peer.

Sorry Ma'am, But No Way Should You Sit In The House Of Lords!

Sorry Ma’am, But No Way Should You Sit In The House Of Lords!

I have no wish to belittle the efforts Mrs Lawrence has made over the past twenty years to get justice for her son, or the charity work she began in his name, but surely, that does not entitle her to a peerage and a seat in the House of Lords. As many commentators on the story have said, what does she know about politics, world affairs and running a country? The simple answer is: Nothing! So in effect she is totally incapable of voting on issues that can affect every man, woman and child in the nation. I might add that this applies to many others who have been handed a peerage.

In my view there are many more people in Britain more deserving of a peerage but will never get one. I think the only reason Miliband has done this is because she is an outspoken critic of David Cameron, and he see’s her as another ally in the Upper Chamber. Its just Labour playing politics.

Miliband - I Wouldn't Trust Him To look After My Dog!

Miliband – I Wouldn’t Trust Him To look After My Dog!

If this lady can get a peerage then just about anyone can, from a local butcher who has faithfully served the community for thirty years, to many police, firemen and servicemen who have stood out through acts of bravery, down to aid workers who have saved thousands of lives through charity work overseas. You could also include many of our Olympic winners, in fact some are, and the list is in  fact endless.

This is more a case of grabbing headlines and an attempt at ‘one-upmanship’ on the part of Miliband to curry favour with the voting masses. However, I suspect the move will backfire on him if comments on the story are to be believed.

Baroness D’Souza - Speaker of the House

Baroness D’Souza – Speaker of the House

There are already an unbelievable 785 peers in The House, although not all attend and not all have the right to vote on issues, like MEP’s for example. The Speaker of the House, Baroness D’Souza, said last month that she found it “embarrassing to mention how many people are in the House”. She went on to add “the only larger House is the Chinese Politburo. It’s very worrying. We don’t need to be that large. The House is over-large. Of that there is absolutely no doubt.”

Part of the problem is that both Labour and the Conservatives have over the years given peerages to those who have given financial backing to the their party, in fact David Cameron has just handed peerages to 30 new people, half of whom are supporters of the Conservative Party. It is widely known, but not proven, that many financial backers of both Labour and the Conservatives demand a peerage as ‘payment’ for any financial backing they give.

The House - Packed In Like Sardines.

The House – Packed In Like Sardines.

What is further disconcerting is that peerages are handed out for life, and each one has the right to claim £300 for every debate they attend. Current estimates indicate there are 600 too many peers in The House and drastic measures need to be taken to slim it down to a reasonable size of between 150 to 200.

A suggestion has been made to include a mandatory retirement age for all peers, but that will take years to bring results. Whatever happens, there can be little doubt that drastic measures must be taken and soon, for if the House of Lords is to fulfil its function properly in our democracy, many of those members need to be given the boot, and among them Mrs. Lawrence. Sorry dear, no ill will intended!

6 Responses to “Baronesse Lawrence? – What a Farce!”

  1. commanderzoopypants Says:

    XXX, I can assure you your opinions are not your own. They were formed after decades of post 1960’s self flagellation of the anglo-saxon world. Notions of “justice” of the variety you are presenting are very rare, uniquely western and ultimately self defeating. A nationstate providing positions of power to those who have deserve it because such a thing is “just” should never take precedence over the capacity of a person to effect useful influence over national affairs. She is famous and well known because the British media selected her story to be representative of the social zeitgeist. Because she became famous, political decisions involving her gained more clout and she became a tool, in this case, to discredit the world view of the political right. There are thousands of other potential candidates who have given their lives to do as much or more than her, but perhaps they are not black or do not sufficiently represent an oppressed minority. She did and that is why she is on the political scene. Floroy’s point is legitimate and at the very least it is not a cathected piece of emotive fury like your responses.

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    • Hi Gregory,
      Many thanks for your comment. I am glad to see that I am not the only one who thinks the rules for entry into the House of Lords have been twisted over the years. I presume your closure is directed at XXX
      Best Regards,
      Roy.

      Like

  2. Dear Sir

    Firstly let me say that I am a bit of a Republican and don’t agree with “Lords” or “Baronesses” and the like. I want the people that represent me to be elected, not appointed. That said, I find your “piece” extremely unfair and a little offensive. Doreen Lawrence has nothing to do with the appointment and if reports are to be believed, took a fair amount of persuading to accept it. So it is very uncharitable to put her in the title of your”piece”. That implies it is somehow her fault.

    I cannot think of anybody who has done more to advocate for victims rights and restorative justice than this proud strong woman who has (through the vile, racist murder of her son) earned the right to review and where necessary repair legislation. Almost single-handed, Baroness Lawrence has driven (Metropolitan) Police reform with her tireless campaigning,

    You say that there are many other more worthy or effective prospective Peers but if you could (name somebody), why haven’t you named him, her or them? The Cabinet Office is available to receive (even if they don’t accept) ALL nominations from anybody (properly channeled).

    The backbone of your piece is confusing in that it both supports and criticizes the Upper Chamber system. Me? I would have it abolished.There may be some veracity in your claim that this appointment “plays to the gallery (electorate)” somewhat. but all of these appointees are and have always been subjective. And Baroness Lawrence has said (according to reports) that she will only retain her seat there for as long as the House of Lords exists. In her lifetime she may renounce her peerage anyway.

    I read your pieces and you appear to be a supporter of justice, So am I. They (your pieces) often reflect the horrid imbalances that go unnoticed and/or unchallenged by society and (regrettably) government of both political hues.

    I don’t care what political party Baroness Lawrence represents and neither should you. She too, is a supporter of justice.

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    • Hi Luke and welcome,
      I am happy to receive comments on posts, even from a self-confessed Republican. If you read the piece properly you will see that this is not a direct attack on Doreen Lawrence but is aimed at Ed Miliband who put her name forward. I am well aware of the good things this lady has done and gave her credit for them. You too must be aware of many people who have done great things, either for their community or the country etc. and to start naming them all would make the post intolerably long. Besides, its not necessary, as the population know this for themselves.
      If you read the public comments on the news item on Yahoo for example, you will see that very many people are of the same opinion as myself, i.e. she is not qualified to make judgements on much of the legislation that passes daily through the House of Lords, and as I mentioned, that goes for many (like Seb Coe for instance).
      I have to say that I do support the House of Lords as a body, for to allow the government (especially Labour) free rein without any checks and balances would lead the country to ruin. Just about all democratic nations have some form of ‘second body’ that oversees what the government is doing.
      What I have criticised is the size of the House. The number of people receiving Honours these days has got out of all proportion, and as I pointed out, many purely because they have given money to the political parties. This is not right.
      You are right in supposing I support justice, and I am sure that if such a subject requiring a vote came up in The House Mrs Lawrence would be well disposed to give an opinion, however, looking at a typical debate schedule I doubt she would be much help on anything else:
      Baroness Corston to ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their response to the Report of the European Union Committee on Workload of the Court of Justice of the European Union: follow-up (16th Report, Session 2012–13, HL Paper 163).
      Lord Luce to ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their assessment of the United Kingdom’s relationships with the countries of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf.
      Lord Cormack to move that this House takes note of the future of English parish churches.
      Baroness O’Cathain to move that this House takes note of the Report of the European Union Committee on the Effectiveness of EU Research and Innovation Proposals (15th Report, Session 2012–13, HL Paper 162

      I doubt if Mrs. Lawrence can give an informed opinion on any of the above subjects, so you see, she, along with many others, is totally unsuited to give an opinion or cast a vote and should not be there.
      Always happy to hear from you.
      Best Regards,
      Roy.

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      • What utter rubbish!
        Just because YOU don’t know Baroness Lawrence’s intellectual capacity she shouldn’t be there. Is that what you are saying? Because that’s what I’m reading.

        The size of the Upper Chamber is NOT her fault. If you don’t like Ed Miliband’s choices, direct your attacks there. I have no problem with that or your thinly veiled rantings about The Labour Party.

        So I hope that I have understood you clearly:

        You think Baroness Lawrence is too stupid to take a seat in the House of Lords.

        Peerages should stay but there should be fewer of them.

        Every prospective peer should have a working knowledge of all political constitutional protocols.

        These prospective peers should also be fully versed in House of Lords etiquette and be across every area of government policy AND the oppositions response to said policy. Plus have a full understanding of all matters in the House of Lords timetable whether they are required/intending to attend or not.

        Good luck with that.

        PS. I don’t need to go to “Yahoo” see the opinions of others. It’s better for me when I develop my own. Maybe you should try it sometime!

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      • Welcome back Luke,
        Firstly, I have said nothing about Mrs Lawrence’s intellectual capacity so please don’t infer that I have. Most people, and I include myself, do not know enough about much of the Lord’s business to debate and vote on many issues discussed there. Neither I suspect do you!
        I have never once indicated that the SIZE of the House of Lords is the fault of Mrs Lawrence so please do not infer that I did.
        I have never intimated that the lady is “too stupid” to take a seat in the Lord’s, those are your words, so please do not twist mine and say I did.
        At least you have one thing right in that I said, and stand by my words, that the House is far too large. If you read the piece correctly you would see that even the Speaker is of that opinion.
        I am not saying that every Peer should be an encyclopaedia on political constitutional protocols, but there are many debates that take place in The House they should stay out of, even though they ALL have a right to speak.
        So far as House etiquette is concerned, I am sure all new members are fully briefed on it before they enter the Chamber.
        Of course you are entitled to, and should form your own opinion on all matters, as do I, but you would be a fool not to take note of the opinions of others. I mentioned them purely because it was a reasonable impression of general public opinion on those who read the article.
        It is clear that you have your views and I have mine, so let us part in peace and each respect the views of the other.
        Best Regards,
        Roy.

        Like

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