Thursday, 30 April 2015
Another day, another worthless gesture. “No income tax, no VAT” Dave? Will you be adding “No money back, no guarantee”? One thing is for sure – in the dying days of the election campaign all parties will be promising “Black or white, rich or broke, we'll cut prices at a stroke…” All I can say in response is “God bless Hooky Street”. But let me get this straight: A politician’s word is no longer of any value so the Conservatives have offered to enact a ‘tax-lock’ law to prevent them from doing what the other side say they’ll do should they get into office?
Leaving aside the confusing idea that this in itself is still only a politicians’ promise, does this now mean that labour will also ‘pledge’ to legally restrain themselves from obeying their driving instincts? A law to stop politicians passing laws, in fact? Because, let’s face it, the sheer burden of prohibitive legislation is a massive part of the problem in power. You get elected, you swap offices with your opposite number and the next thing you know you’re knocking one out for the common good; a law, that is.
As everybody knows, making something illegal absolutely stops it happening, doesn’t it? If that was the case I’m surprised and not a little disappointed that nobody has yet written decrees to prohibit global warming, racism, everyday sexism, homophobia, trans-something-or-othero-phobia and every other horrible thing that humans do to each other. But wait, while laws proscribing such behaviour have done nothing but exacerbate the problems, the laws against talking about it in a naughty way have been fantastically effective; punishable to the full extent of the Lord Justices' powers. So rapists still rape, sexists still sex but, boy are we afraid to discuss either in uncertain company.
If words on expensively procured paper could stop anything we could eliminate smoking, debt, poverty, obesity, cancer and unhappiness with the mere stroke of a pen. But they can’t. If politicians are so convinced of the inviolability of man-made legislation why not use that belief to curb the excesses and stupidities of elected officials? It could become an offence for MPs to consort with ‘slebs’ for instance. Or to air their marital grievances in public (I’m looking at YOU, Huhne and Pryce.) Or better yet, to prevent the Parliamentary knee-jerk response of spontaneous law-making.
Oi, politicians, No!
In one week’s time we will have elected the next coalition of legislators. Given that their instincts have regularly and predictably led us to financial ruin, loss of autonomy, societal breakdown and all-round disappointment, the best thing they can do is nothing at all. They should all be falling over themselves to cross their hearts and hope to die if they don’t make it illegal for a new government to change a damned thing until they have been in office for at least, say, five years…