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Politics

In particular British Politics.

Last night Tamzin and I sat down to watch parliament vote on a few Brexit (I really hate that term) proposals and amendments. Even a day later I’m not sure what they were actually voting on, nor whether it is likely to make any difference in the days ahead. That’s not what I want to talk about though.

British politics is an embarassment. I’m not talking about the mess we’ve got ourselves into reguarding leaving Europe (whichever way you lean, I don’t think there’s anyone who thinks May and the rest are handling it well) but the way the whole system works.

It’s a bunch of grown men and women shouting at each other, as if they were school children.

Actually no, that’s not fair. School children wouldn’t be able to act like that. When school children debate they are taught to give each other a chance to speak and be heard. They don’t shout over each other and they don’t have petty squabbles. I’d say that our parliamentary debates are more like a bunch of animals tearing into the weakest member of the pack.

It wouldn’t be such a big deal if they were actually able to achieve anything, but the process doesn’t even serve a purpose. They shout at each other and nothing gets done. I’m not sure what the point of it all is.

Even the person who was supposed to be in charge of keeping order (John Bercow) couldn’t keep control of them and, more frequently, joined in with the banter and squabble. It looked a lot like what (I suspect) it was; a bunch of private school toffs arguing over an issue that isn’t likely to affect them much either way. There was little sense of the seriousness of what was being dealt with, little obvious sign that they were aware how many jobs and lives are hanging in the balance.

It seems about time that we had a modern parliament with a modern way of doing things. I don’t know what that would look like, but it couldn’t fail to be better than what we have now. This is the 21st century and the people in charge of the country should start behaving like it. Before it’s too late for all of us.

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