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UK Democracy Threatened

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‘You know the best thing about what you wrote?’ the boy went on, and Tomas could see the effort it cost him to speak. ‘Your refusal to compromise. Your clear-cut sense of what’s good and what’s evil, something we’re beginning to lose. We have no idea any more what it means to feel guilty. The Communists have the excuse that Stalin misled them. Murderers have the excuse that their mothers didn’t love them. And suddenly you come out and say: there is no excuse. No one could be more innocent, in his soul and conscience, than Oedipus. And yet he punished himself when he saw what he had done.’

From The The Unbearable Lightness Of Being By Milan Kundera

t-24

Something terrible is happening to the UK’s democratic status. Over the years there have been many major examples of governing prime ministers undermining democracy and social wellbeing. A few examples: Thatcher, backed by her MPs, undermined the country’s industrial base with dire long-term consequences. Her Right-To-Buy policy to garner more votes started the demise of social housing when bargain-basement sale accommodations were never replaced.  May’s immigration policy left many immigrants of colour disenfranchised (the Windrush scandal) and unable to benefit from health services, work, education with the threat and actual deportation for many.

f-144

Cameron introduced the EU referendum which also left the country with long-term economic and social problems. Tony Blair joined Bush in promoting war against Iraq against the wishes of the UN, the UK public but passed by parliament based on unproven intelligence and an enhanced, inaccurate report. The implications to Middle East peace and prosperity are incalculable and devastating. In addition tens of thousands of lives were lost and millions sought safety by leaving their homes for distant shores.

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The current prime minister, Boris Johnson, has continued the trend with gusto. Firstly, he lead a substantially misleading Brexit campaign which many believed with the result that the UK left its most profitable and friendly alliance which had lasted over 40 years. He tried illegally to close parliamentary debate and lied to the Queen. He promised that ‘Brexit is done’ and finally agreed to an EU departure deal that was far from done with difficult negotiations still taking place over several aspects including the Northern Ireland Protocol. And this while the UK’s overseas trade is declining alarmingly with European trade down by nearly 20%. Johnson’s team failed to initiate lockdowns early enough while allowing infected aged patients to enter the social care system with many deaths resulting. The poor, corrupt and mishandled supply of PEP also contributed to the second-highest death rate in the world.

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