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Thu Sep 14, 2017, 05:26 PM

Theresa May Takes Her Darkest, Most Desperate Turn Yet

It is one of the great ironies of Brexit that the United Kingdom’s messy divorce from Europe, sold as an effort to reclaim parliamentary sovereignty, has instead delivered its opposite. Last Monday, the House of Commons voted in the early stages of the European Union Withdrawal Bill to give the government sweeping powers to make laws without parliamentary scrutiny. These powers are named after Henry VIII, England’s most authoritarian monarch, but they in fact bear a greater resemblance to Hitler’s Enabling Act of 1933, which allowed the Fuhrer to bypass the Reichstag and govern by proclamation.

Allusions to Nazi Germany are generally overwrought, but this is no exaggeration: Prime Minister Theresa May does not have an absolute majority in the British Parliament, just as Hitler didn’t in the Reichstag in 1933, which is why she has been forced to resort to his strategy. If the withdrawal bill is passed as it stands, May will be able to make laws by decree and reverse and adapt primary legislation without consulting Parliament. It is the greatest attack on the British constitution in at least a century. Parliamentary sovereignty—the very thing that Brexiteers said they were voting for in leaving the E.U.—may be about to be vastly reduced by a cabal of right-wing Conservatives who say they are obeying the people’s will. Such power grabs, of course, are always done in the name of the people. The full title of the 1933 Enabling Act was “The law to remedy the distress of the people and the state.”

The derangement of Theresa May’s minority government in the United Kingdom is something to behold, and it is also more than a little frightening. Even in the America of Donald Trump, there has not yet been any real attempt, save a few controversial executive orders, to strip Congress of its powers. But in Britain—the Mother of Parliaments, according to the Victorian reformer John Bright—we stand idly by as May attempts to neutralize our elected representatives. It seems incredible to me that I am reporting on this, but even more alarming is that there is so little concern expressed by the majority of the press and the generally acquiescent BBC. The point is that after the referendum last year, and despite the poor result in the General Election, the right-wing of the Conservative Party has continued traveling in an increasingly undemocratic direction and has, so far, swept all before it. The normally rather sober Hansard Society, an organization dedicated to promoting and strengthening democracy, has called the “broad scope of the powers in the Bill, the inadequate constraints placed on them, and the shortcoming in the proposed parliamentary control of them” a “toxic mix” that will undermine Parliament’s ability to hold May to account or to meliorate the most damaging policies arising from Brexit.

MPs are so caught up in the madness of Brexit that, for the most part, they cannot see the power grab for what it is. Fears are expressed and noble speeches given but in the dead of night on Monday, MPs voted by 326 to 290, giving May an effective majority of 36. This included seven members of the Labor opposition, who astonishingly defied their party, which has just begun to soften its line on Brexit so as to accommodate increasing worries about the economy, employment and workers’ rights. These seven Labor members—Ronnie Campbell (age 74), Frank Field (75), Kate Hoey (71), Kelvin Hopkins (76), John Mann (57), Dennis Skinner (85) and Graham Stringer (67) have an average age of 72, which underlines a truth about the Brexit vote and the lurch to the right in Britain. They are the product of something profound going on among an older generation, even among some left-wingers. These people yearn for a past that does not exist and they do not give one solitary damn for the future of young people who will be forced to inherit the economic mess.

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/09/theresa-may-takes-her-darkest-most-desperate-turn-yet

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Reply Theresa May Takes Her Darkest, Most Desperate Turn Yet (Original post)
Denzil_DC Sep 2017 OP
malchickiwick Sep 2017 #1
msongs Sep 2017 #2
Turbineguy Sep 2017 #3
not fooled Sep 2017 #5
Paka Sep 2017 #4

Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Thu Sep 14, 2017, 05:46 PM

1. Thanks for posting this. Very informative.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Thu Sep 14, 2017, 06:15 PM

2. repubs could do the same thing here in the USA. nt

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Response to msongs (Reply #2)

Thu Sep 14, 2017, 06:48 PM

3. The repubs would love to do that here.

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Response to Turbineguy (Reply #3)

Sat Sep 16, 2017, 01:37 PM

5. They're gonna try

the koch shadow government is pushing for a constitutional convention that they could convene after seizing control of a few more states.

[link:https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/03/13/republicans-and-the-constitution|]

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Thu Sep 14, 2017, 07:17 PM

4. K&R

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