Saturday, July 01, 2006

Dave gets his rights right

Dave has got something right! Its always been amazing how a unicameral country with an ineffective separation of executive and legislative does not have a Bill of Rights to protect individuals from the excesses of government. So Dave was spot on when he suggested a UK Bill of Rights this week - so spot on he passed the acid test of being slagged off by Bagehot in The Economist. Strangley, The Economist's errata has yet to apologise for backing Blair in the 2005 General Election

We should do what the US did, when they wrote a Constitution that has lasted for over 200 years, and keep it short, basic and assume that people are free to do what they choose, unless government has the specific ability to legislate in that particular. The EU version of Human Rights confuses liberty and socialism-lite, and achieves neither.

What laws would fade away if Dave introduced a Bill of Rights Uncle Sam style. Lets take the US version and apply it to the UK

The powers not delegated by the United Counties of England by the Constitution, nor prohibited to it by the Counties, are reserved to the Counties respectively, or to the people

How great it would be, if the UK, let alone the EU, government could only pass laws on certain matters. Hence, matters get left to individuals unless the government has specific permission to impose restrictions on those matters. So no national laws on what magazines we can read, when we can drink, what we can smoke, smacking your kids, who and where anyone can get married, what can be advertised, etc

No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law

This would block Gordon Brown's trick of issuing a press release changing tax law, and then passing the necessary rules through Parliament 6 months later.

Nor shall private property be taken into public use without just compensation

What just compensation do I get from my private property being taken into public use from my taxes. Is the current level of public service provision, or non-provision, just compensation?

Congress will make no law establishing a religion or the free exercise thereof

No official state religion, and no nomination of bishops of the Prime Minister Millions of kids sigh with relief as they avoid having to recite the lord's prayer in assembly, again.

The right to bear arms

Its only a matter of time before carrying a penknife is banned. Note, its not the right to use arms.

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state shall not be infringed

That's one not subject to any EU dictats or political correctness.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures

Hence ending Inheritance tax as an unreasonable seizure, levied on income already taxed at 40%.

There would be a ban on smoking bans, to enforce it would be an unreasonable search stopping people being secure in their own houses.

Excessive fines shall not be imposed

Bye, bye congestion charge. A second go at Inheritance tax, which levies an excessive fine on people for the not especially malicious act of dying.

Nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted

No playing Keane or Coldplay at high volume.

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people

And shall not be construed by Human Rights Lawyers to fight ridiculous cases at the taxpayers expense. Mrs Blair - its not just your husband that needs to think about a new job.


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