LET’S NOT MAKE IT EASIER FOR THE POLITICIANS by Betty Luks

I see that barrister Louise Clegg in her address to the Institute of Public Affairs has suggested that what is needed for ruling parties to ease the gridlock of an uncontrolled Senate, is to have longer parliamentary terms and joint sittings of both Houses to ‘ease the passage of Bills through the Parliaments’.  Her paper appeared on David Pascoe’s Facebook page.

She thought that “If the two major parties had the slightest inclination to put the national interest above their own, they would embark on bipartisan efforts for sensible constitutional change, such as lengthening parliamentary terms and the mooted constitutional amendment to enable joint sittings to address parliamentary gridlock.  These would provide much-needed structural circuit breakers and help governments to govern…”

Surely her proposals would actually give politicians more power thus making it easier for the two main political parties ‘to govern’?   What happened to parliamentary representation and the vital importance of the separation and division of powers with those necessary checks and balances?

As this lady’s address was all about values, one could ask her what she makes of that Lord Acton quote:  “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”  Aren’t these politicians corrupted enough?

Also, what happened to the right of the people to say ‘NO’ to laws to which they object?  After all surely ‘the freedom, the right to choose one thing at a time’ is an important value in a free nation?  Methinks the lady misses the whole point!

As we observed recently, Governments are merely instruments through which the individual should lay down the general rules under which the game of life is to be played. We hear much about what wonderful things Governments have done, or are going to do, for the individual members of society, but the facts of history prove that most reforms have been initiated by individual members of the community and forced upon reluctant Governments.

Writing of this matter in 1867, the English historian, Thomas Henry Buckle, said:

“That the civilization of Europe is chiefly owing to the ability which has been displayed by two different governments, and to the sagacity with which the evils of society have been palliated by legislational remedies is a notion which must appear so extravagant as to make it difficult to refer to it with becoming gravity…..

“No great political improvements, no great reform, either legislative or executive, has ever been originated in any country by its rulers. The first suggestions of such steps have always been by bold and able thinkers, who discern the abuse, denounce it, and point out how it can be remedied… At length, if circumstances are favourable, the pressure from without becomes so strong, that the government is obliged to give way; and, the reform being accomplished, the people are expected to admire the wisdom of their rulers, by whom all this has been done…

“It is only with the greatest difficulty that parliament is induced to grant what the people are determined to have, and the necessity of which has been proved by the ablest men. Posterity ought to know that great measures are extorted from the legislative by pressure from without; that they are conceded not cheerfully but with fear; and carried out by statesmen, who have spent their lives in opposing what they now suddenly advocate…

“…..since the most valuable improvements in legislation are those which subvert preceding legislation it is clear that the balance of good cannot be on their side. It is clear that the progress of civilization cannot be due to those who, on the most important subjects, have done so much harm that their successors are considered benefactors simply because they reverse their policy, and thus restore affairs to the state in which they would have remained if politicians had allowed them to run on in the course which the wants of society required …

The effects produced in European civilization by political legislation compose an aggregate so formidable that we may well wonder how, in the face of them, civilization has been able to advance. That under such circumstances it has advanced is a decisive proof of the extraordinary energy of man …
 
“The world has been made familiar with the great truth, that one main condition of the prosperity of the people is that its rulers shall have very little power, that they shall by no means presume to raise themselves into supreme judges of the National interests, or deem themselves authorised to defeat the wishes of those for whose betterment alone they occupy the posts entrusted to them.”

It is obvious that we no longer have the political wisdom of our forefathers.

In his essay, “The Situation and the Outlook,” C.H. Douglas says that:

“…Government is inherently and inevitably restrictive and therefore … the amount of Government which a community can stand without collapsing is definitely limited, and if Governments are competitive, the most governed community will collapse first. And, therefore, the first policy to be applied to over-Government, i.e. Socialism, is and must be, a negative policy – a retreat from Government; less Government.”…”
Read further here:  http://alor.org/sct/social-credit-training-course-lecture-4/

Less power in the hands of governments with better checks and balances is the way to go for a freer people.  We certainly don’t need governments to have more power with less checks and balances leading on to further growth of the corruption we were warned about.  The evidence of that truth is there for all to see on all sides of politics today.

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