back to article Jacqui Smith resurrects 42-days after Lords rejection

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has introduced a one-line bill* which could be rushed through Parliament against any individual the police wished to hold for 42 days. The House of Lords last night threw out her attempt to extend detention for suspected terrorists to 42 days. The clause was removed from the Counter Terrorism Bill …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    There's a "non-severe" end of severe?

    The only threat to this country is having an incompetent fascist like her near the top.

  2. Etienne

    We ought always to deal justly, not only with those who are just to u

    We ought always to deal justly, not only with those who are just to us, but likewise to those who endeavor to injure us; and this, for fear lest by rendering them evil for evil, we should fall into the same vice. (Hierocles)

  3. Dan Silver badge

    One-line bill?

    Better correct that, it's a one-page bill. A one-line bill would be "All your civil liberties are belong to us."

    The government can rush the one-page bill through if they've declared a national emergency. I can't remember off-hand exactly under what conditions they have can declare national emergency but I do remember they've been broadened under previous crime and terrorism bills and I believe parliamentary majority is not required.

  4. Richard

    stupid woman

    her original plea gets rejected by the House of Lords so she comes up with another one to do exactly the same thing!

    Bloody stupid b'tch, she is not bigger or more important than the Lords. she should crawl back under her taxpayers-paid-for-stone and bio-degrade like the scum she is

  5. dervheid
    Thumb Up

    "They don't like it up 'em!"

    When I was young (and foolish) I used to believe that The Lords was an undemocratic gaggle of hereditary inbreeds and a waste of space in the democratic process.

    How wrong can you be.

    Gawd bless 'em.

    You almost feel sorry for Jaqui, scrabbling around for the tattered shreds of the '42 days' and posturing like some spoiled brat.

    Showing her true colours there!

    Sorry? NOT!!

  6. Hollerith

    Does she not listen?

    Those opposing the bill, including many NuLabour cronies in the Lords, had very good arguments as to why it was a bad idea. She can't just kep parroting 'we need it the risk is severe' and expect, in the face of the evidence, that we'll finally be bludgeoned into submission. We have assessed the risks, and feel the risk to our commonwealth of liberties is greater than this season's crop of misguided loonies who think (in the face of the evidence) that killing civilians is a way to change the minds of governments.

  7. David Grierson
    Thumb Down


    So they have a 1 liner bill which can be pushed through parliament saying "we want to be able to hold Mustaffa al Terrorist because he's a very naughty boy."

    That'll bode well for any intended prosecution won't it?

    When a case can get thrown out for undue press coverage d'you reckon that publishing in Hansard might impact upon any future proceedings?

  8. Stuart Harrison
    Thumb Down

    What a surprise

    Will our cryptofacist overlords stop at nothing to stomp all over our civil liberties? I'm guessing the next move is to start dismantling the upper house so they can push through any bill they damn well like. Sigh.

  9. Julian I-Do-Stuff

    Parliament Act

    What we need is a new Parliament Act; whilst 1911 may have been OK, reducing the Lords' ability to block legislation to two parliamentary sessions over one year is makes it just too easy to force stupid things through (even if they have no logic, are not even plausibly necessary AND are opposed by most of the people one might think would be in favour - in this case police, ex-attorney generals of the same party, SIS, etc.)

    [It should probably include a "reverse-Salisbury" provision too: Parliament should not be able to force through a bill explicitly contrary to manifesto commitments (which was it - the university fees? - that they promised would not be introduced... then did)]

    ...apologies, that's far too sensible, what I meant to say of course was: twats/What Ho! the Lords.

  10. Ed Blackshaw Silver badge

    Stand down Jacqui.

    You're an embarassment to the human race.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    David Davis? Don't make me laugh

    It was nothing to do with his pointless publicity stunt. This was always going to be rejected.

    As for Jacqui? Give it up you daft bint.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    like a financial dispute (re icelandic bank assets.)

    I wonder if they play a game "How can I abuse the anti-terror laws this week, most imaginative answers win a bottle of champers."

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Severe as in what?

    Food, shelter and power riots etc. when the economy really does hit the shitter?

    All in the name of trrrrrism you understand.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    42 days for complaining about fuel prices?

    Not quite as bad as China yet. Try harder.

  15. Peter Darby

    Shock Doctrine?

    "You're obviously not scared enough, so we'll wait until you are before we ask you to abandon what few guarantees to civil liberties we have left. just see if we don't"

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down



  17. david wilson

    We're at the severe end of severe?

    And yet it *still* seems like the bulk of the terrorist plots are carried out by people who can't make things explode, or who are penetrated by the security services before they can actually do anything.

    I can't wait until we're at the mild end of severe.

    The only obvious argument for longer pre-charge detention is in the hope that someone who kept quiet for a month will somehow become talkative in the next fortnight, or to keep someone locked up who you're confident is guilty until sufficient evidence turns up to charge them.

    Once someone has been in custody even for a few days, any co-conspirators still at liberty will likely have moved, changed identities, and altered their plans, unless they're extraordinarily thick.

    If the bulk of the threat is from some kind of bomb or another, since there's no shortage of potential targets (basically anywhere with people gathered together), changing plans in the face of a potential security breach must be fairly easy.

    If it's a matter of getting enough evidence to charge someone with something serious enough to warrant their continued detention, if you're desperate to keep them in custody because you're sure something is going on, you can always charge them with some kind of conspiracy and worry about the case falling apart months or years later at trial.

    At the moment, it doesn't seem that there's much fallout if some grand terrorist plot trial turns into a bit of a damp squib. Unless such events become too frequent, I don't expect that situation will change much, and if there was some real emergency, most people would likely be even less concerned about the people who eventually have charges dropped or are found not guilty. It's hard to see what future circumstances would warrant an instant law change just to keep some dangerous person inside.

  18. Mark

    Stupid bint

    'Smith told the Commons that the threat facing the UK was: "the severe end of severe" '


  19. Al
    Black Helicopters

    A cunning plan....

    The 42 day bill will be held until something bad happens, and then brought in during the predictable 'foaming at the mouth' jingoism afterwards. Cue the press howling that any attempt to oppose the new terror laws being 'an insult to the victims', blah blah blah, and Ms Smith wins.

  20. Nomen Publicus
    Thumb Down

    Jacqui Smith - silly name

    If Jacqui Smith _really_ believes what she says about 42 days why has she given up? Sure, it would be a lot of hard work to force through this terrible bill, but governments have done so in the past.

    Jacqui Smith knows the terrible flaw that lurks at the heart of the bill. What happens on day 43? Someone who is _so_ suspect that a judge and parliament will agree to extended detention is released and will immediately appear in every headline proclaiming their innocence.

  21. Jimmy Floyd

    Putin would be proud of her

    Someone remind me, when is it we get to vote them out? Can't bloody wait...

  22. Pete Silver badge

    Time is money

    The time limit on detentions supposedly reflects that amount of time the fuzz need to investigate a situation. This is a function of the number of man-hours applied to the particular case, not the number of times the sun sets. If the police consider something to be important enough, they should assign more people to work on it. If there aren't enough people available - or enough money to pay their overtime, that's not the suspect's fault and they should not be held merely for that reason.

    Instead of extending the length of time anyone can be held, a government that seriously thinks there's a need to expend more effort on some cases should be required to apply that effort in a shorter time, rather than to detain innocent people if it's not convenient to "process" them quicker. Let's see how seriously they take these so-called threats by having them assign more money to these investigations, not by imprisoning people on no charge until they get round to doing some detective work.

  23. This post has been deleted by its author

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We need to repeal 'control orders'

    If someone is a terrorists there should be evidence and a trial, we can't simply let Jacqui Smith pull a control order out of her ass and start restricting people's rights just on her word alone.

    Enough already, we need to get back to the basics.

    No punishment without Judicial process, freedom of speech, innocent until proven guilty, probably cause before search, the right to protest,etc.

  25. Anonymous Coward

    @Stuart Harrison.

    You say "I'm guessing the next move is to start dismantling the upper house so they can push through any bill they damn well like."

    I see your comment and raise you The Parliament Act. GodEmperor Tony Bliar shoved this little gem through and it has already been used to override the Lords overturning of ill-conceived NuLabour legislation in order that "the government" (whoever is in, so not just NuLabour - wonder if the GodEmperor thought of that when he forced it through?) can decide to ignore the Lords if the old duffers dare to disagree.

    And aint it funny how Bliar was going to get rid of the House of Lords until they let him have The Parliament Act... hmm. Anyone would think he just expected them to roll over and vote his way. Oh well, guess the old gits (dictionary definition = "awkward or obtuse person") are good for something.

    Mines the one in that nice dayglo orange reserved for "threats to national security" (*) everywhere.



    (*) That is, anyone who dares to question The Party^H^H^H oops so sorry, the Government...

  26. Charlie Clark Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    @Mr Hat-and-Coat

    Govtard - like it.

    @ The rest of you. We're all a bit pinko liberal today, aren't we? Can't we get some nice redneck flames on how good Guantamo Bay has been at obtaining evidence and preventing terrorism?

    It should go back to 48 hours. It's a bit sick that we're celebrating the fact that detention without trial hasn't been extended to 42 days but it's still four, fucking long weeks. It's the job of the secret services to take out the really dangerous and naughty people even if the break the law doing so and not the responsibility of those civilians in uniform aka the police.

    Oh, and can we have a reminder that MI5 officially reckons that the IRA is currently still a bigger problem than any putative jihadist, despite repeated attempts to fasttrack discontented Asians into radical fodder.

  27. James Pickett

    Silly cow

    What really worries her, of course, is that life will go on as normal without her silly Bill, or that she really could walk down Lewisham high street for a kebab without an armed guard and return unmolested. You'd have to be pretty desperate, IMHO...

  28. Anonymous Coward


    ... they can abuse anti-terror legislation to freeze the assets of Icelandic banks and to snoop on people who try to get their kids into schools outside the borough, couldn't they also use it to slap 42 days' trial-free detention on, for example, cannabis-smoking politicians who try to change the law on cannabis?

  29. scott

    42 days later

    Danny Boyle could have a field day with this one.

    Our hero - Jacqui - is the sole survivor in Westminster. Picture the scene. She's walking across Westminster bridge, the tatters of her bill blowing in the wind. She's shaking her head woefully. "Oh, if only they'd listened to me"

    From over the horizon - she sees a mass of dark bodies, although they seem eerily to move as one. Everyone except her have turned into flesh eating, bearded terrrists! Aaaargh - run for your life, Jacqui! Run for your life!!!

    She tries taking refuge in the Commons. No good, they've breeched the security by taking jobs as cleaners. Up to the Lords she goes. The House is filled with slow moving pseudo corpses, drooling with their hands outstretched.

    "Phew, they haven't got up here. The old dears are still the same as ever".

    Alas, Jacqui fails to notice that in any great zombie movie, the safest place the pub.

    Jaqcui gets ripped apart by the fogeys. Fade out, The End

    Roll credits.

  30. alain williams Silver badge

    ''the severe end of severe''

    Yes - severely at risk of ending up as a fascist state. Let us be thankful for the Lords.

  31. Adrian Jooste

    Is she a left over from the bush administration or what?

    This woman is something else. Just like the reclassification of cannibis, she has completely ignored any information that contradicts her fascist view and goes ahead and does what she wants anyway. Oh the boys over the pond must envy G. Brown so. Palin is there best attempt and she seems like a political genius in comparison.

    This pompous bigot needs to be relocated to a position where she can put her personality to better use and still serve the public in some constructive way, like being a night bus driver...

  32. Duckorange
    Thumb Down

    And they'd never, ever misuse it

    ...Like, say, use anti-terrorism laws to seize the assets of a friendly nation.

  33. Anonymous Coward

    Severe end of severe?

    Fewer people have been or injured in the UK by would-be terrorist <strike>twats<.strike> plots since 2005 for the past several years than by dogs. And frankly, I'm not that terrified of dogs, which strike me as the mild end of mild threats. Though our own version of the pitbull in lipstick is starting to get me down.

    What hyperbole would she drag up for a a semi-pro organisation like the IRA, or the PLO, or smart and enthusiastic amateurs like the Red Army Faction, which even taken all together with their many chums and a variety of statal and para-statal backing seem not to have brought down more than minor inconvenience on us in the 1970s and 80s, while we preserved most of our liberties.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Jacqui's wacky world view.

    Number of days you can be locked up without charge.

    Canada # 1

    USA ## 2

    Russia ##### 5

    France ###### 6

    Ireland ####### 7

    Turkey ####### 7.5

    UK now ############################ 28

    Smith ########################################## 42

    Data courtesy of

    This woman obviously knows something that is so scary that she is not willing to share it with the rest of the world. This is totally off the scale type scariness, hard to live with, impossible to share. Does she sleep at night; is she sane? Have our spooks been told.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    alternative words

    Has this woman never played scrabble?

    Severe end of severe... would be er... simply severe.

    No wonder they need 42 days to fabricate, sorry collect evidence when the home secretary can't even use a fairly simple english word appropriately in a sentence.

    "The need is particularly severe" would have done.

    I think Jaqui is at the Stupid end of Stupid!

  36. david g
    IT Angle

    ...the thicker end of thick ?

    ... the stalinist end of stalinist ?

    ..or maybe just the deafer end of deaf.

  37. Anonymous Coward

    what is it with...

    women in power? Do they have to prove they are tougher than everyone else?

    Thatcher, Smith, Palin?

    Can't we have some real women in power, you know the ones that don't want to torture & kill everyone.....

    Coat? Mine's the one without the padded shoulders...

  38. Anomalous Cowherd Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    @ Putin would be proud of her

    No he wouldn't - he'd be horrified. The maximum detention without trial in Russia is 5 days.

    And can I second "They don't like it up em": more power to our unelected overlords! Long may they flaunt our democratically elected betters with their unfashionable "long term" view.

  39. Graham Marsden


    > The government can rush the one-page bill through if they've declared a national emergency. I can't remember off-hand exactly under what conditions they have can declare national emergency

    For more information (at the risk of a Godwin!) see the "Enabling Legislation" which allowed Hitler to seize power from the Reichstag in 1933...

  40. Anonymous Coward

    Norman Andrews for PM

    Or at least a pundit's slot on a serious news program

  41. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: what is it with...

    Sadly it's because women *have* to be tougher than everyone else to get to the top, because it's still more difficult for women. Which means the only women who get to the top at present are the most terrifyingly ambitious and hardened ones. The wrong ones, basically.

    I still can't quite explain Palin, though. Holy good gravy.

  42. Richard
    Black Helicopters

    Ignore David Davis

    I wouldn't pay any attention to David Davis. If you spend some time doing some real digging, you'll find that his high profile supporters are all people who stand to gain from the passing of said bill.

    David Davis' stunt is a cunning reverse-psychology vote grabber. It runs like this:

    Davis: I shall not be part of this liberty stripping system any longer!

    Public: Good! What will you do?

    Davis: I shall resign, and force a by election! The people shall show by their vote if they want this bill out or not!

    Public: Absolutely! We'll vote for you!

    *** Election passes ***

    Davis: Now that I'm in, and the conservatives run the country, this 42-day thing isn't such a bad idea....

    Public: But... you said....

    Davis: Stuff that. You were gullible. Carry on... *** parliament act stamp ***

    Shami Chakrabarti is another faux libertarian. One day she'll be all "this takes away human rights!" and the next day you'll find out she was at the top table of a Fabian Society meeting that decided they should push to ban people using the word "chav". Can't have it both ways Shami.

    -- Richard

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    RE: Russia 5 days stuff

    To be fair though, in Russia you just end up committing suicide in interesting and implausible ways. Or getting elected.

  44. Joe

    I agree with 42 days detention...

    ...for Jacqui Smith.

  45. Glyn

    wacki indeed

    Why wasn't any of this anti-terror law needed when the various Irish groups were regularly blowing chunks out of the country ?

    @ David Wilson

    what he said

  46. Mark

    Sadly it's because women *have* to be tougher

    I deny that is the case.

    It's *easier* for women to get ahead when they act tougher.

    Because men can't socially act against that like they can men.

    This doesn't mean they HAVE to be tougher than men to get ahead.

    For those who cannot get the idea that women ARE humans just like them, acting tough doesn't help.

  47. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Stupid Bitch

    Is there really anything more that needs to be said?

    Paris could do better.

  48. michael

    42 days

    so after 42 days when they find I am insconet I have no job (I do not think my imployer will w8 for me) no house (42 days with no job no income no morgage/rent) no mony (see prevoius comment) and will I get compensation for being held ....yer it was a silly question

  49. Brian

    Neues Arbeit - Kraft Durch Dummheit

    Well, here we go again - the stupid woman with the shoulder pads (they're for mounting the Schutzstaffel flashes when it's safe to reveal the truth) feels it's safe to ignore the will of the people and common sense with this disgusting little bill.

    Herr Braun must be proud of her.

  50. Scott
    Black Helicopters

    Serve end of serve

    Like old Jackies the stupid end of stupid, let it go woman you can't have everything your own way sometimes you have to miss Eastenders so we can watch european football.

    sorry thats my thought can't watch what she wants at home so at work she'll have it her own way, even if that means locking people up for a month and a half without telling 'em why? yer free country my arse.

  51. dervheid

    @ Richard

    You Goit!

    You just HAD to go and mention that bloody Chakrabarti woman, didn't you.

    Now I'll have to go for a lie down in a dark, cool, quiet room.

    It's my blood pressure, you see.

  52. david wilson

    'everyone else' ==men

    >>"Sadly it's because women *have* to be tougher than everyone else to get to the top, "

    Seems maybe more that the system ensures that all the people who get to the top are rather similar. Maybe years of toeing the party line and licking the relevant backsides does inculcate a desire to throw one's weight around after finally achieving some level of power to essentially the same extent in women as in men?

    Some people thought "Wouldn't politics be different (as in better) if only we got more women MPs and ministers?", but the ones we have got so far don't seem obviously different from the men they replaced or work alongside, apart possibly from some having a personal conviction that they were different (as in 'better'), and that they could somehow improve things simply by doing business as usual, just without a Y chromosome.

    Of course, that does lead on to pondering whether the problem all along wasn't actually that men were in control, but that the system resulted in a particular kind of person succeeding, and that just as with women, the men who succeed aren't necessarily representative of men in general.

    Finally, though *maybe* it's less of an issue with Smith, there does seem to be a notable subset of female NewLabour ministers who have gone to the same poor voice coach, resulting in a delivery that sounds frequently smug and patronising, as if they're talking to a class of small children who NEED every SECOND word EMPHASISED.

    Even if they're actually saying something you'd normally agree with, the tone can be so annoying that you find yourself tempted to change your opinion.

    A singsong delivery may be tolerable or even appealing in some circumstances, but it really doesn't work coming from people who are supposed to be serious people doing a serious job running the country.

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What about when they get it wrong?

    To me, falsely imprisoning someone for 42 days is more likely to turn that person into a terrorist. Ditto for gitmo bay. After 5 years imprisonment and torture I'd want to go out and kill nationals of that authority.

  54. Sam


    Jacqui is an ex teacher.

    What do you expect?

  55. QuiteEvilGraham

    @wacki indeed

    Er..., Internment, I think it was called. I believe that the conventional view is that it made things much worse. The minute you shift the focus from some "cause" (especially a very nebulous one) to someones father, brother, cousin, mate from the pub, etc. views tend to polarise very quickly indeed. People are silly that way. But I guess that politicians like to see the world in terms of factions (or to put it simply, then and us). That's what they're used to, but there are times when they should be told firmly to bugger off with their nonsense. This is one of them.

  56. druck Silver badge

    14, 28, 42, 90, ... days

    The real reason for ever longer detention is just a propaganda stunt for failed governments. On a potential bad news day, the government can just send out the menacing armed balaclava clad anti-terror police for some nice big high profile raids, rounding up dozens of dark skinned individuals in a couple of northern cities, plus a quiet home counties suburb for maximum hysteria. They'll be plenty of leaked briefings about ricin, sarin, TATP, airliners and maybe even a dirty bomb, as there is nothing like a bit of nuclear to put the willies up the general public.

    Trouble is when you have to let them all go again because you can't charge any of them even with the dozens of anti-terror laws, such as "suspicion of conspiring to read material which could be interpreted by Daily Mail readers as being useful in the preparation of a terrorist act", it tends to result in a bit of bad publicity. However if you can hang on to them for several months, that will have given you time to see if you can get them on any immigration irregularities, benefit frauds, tax avoidance, or failing that, turn up a bit of kiddie porn on their computer, or even better, the latest catch all with a definition so wide you could drive a bus through it; "extreme porn".

    When someone finally remembers asks; what about all those people that were arrested a few months ago? The government can assure us they are all safely locked away for a range of heinous crimes. But of course there are many more out there just waiting at the even severer end of server, so it's necessary to have 90/180/365 days detention without trail.

  57. Anonymous Coward


    Surely Jacqui is just a closet HitchHikers fan??

    How else can the "42" be explained!

    I'm sure I saw a photo of her, where she had some sort electronic organiser thing. On the front I swear I saw the reassuring words "Don't Panic". Well, I couldn't see the latter part of the first word...

    Mine's the one with the towel in one pocket and packet of salted nuts in the other.

  58. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Stupid Cow

    Brown has just been lauded for helping the world to deal with the economic crisis that he himself was instrumental in creating.

    Could our beloved, grass munching herbivore of a Home Secretary not be persuaded to save the world from terrorism by sharing her reasons for 42 days detention with the rest of the planet? There is so much to share and so little time. Armageddon beckons,Jacqui, the world awaits your wisdom..

  59. Mark


    That's TONY (pause) Blair's fault (pause) with his (pause) Playschool method (pause) of EMPHASISING (pause) how (pause) EMOTIANALLY involved (pause) that he HAS to (pause) pause (pause) MANY times (pause) to (pause) get ALL the (pause) words (pause) out.

    I think Tony may work as peace envoy in the middle east by ensuring rather than conspiring how to kill each other, they'll get together in united detestation of that fucking Tony (pause) Blair!

  60. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    To remain in the country ...

    you must remain gainfully employed and have a permanent place of residence.

    After 42 days they have neither so we can simply deport them.

    Thank you to our unpaid, unelected upper house.

  61. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    @ac - our own version of the pitbull in lipstick

    Rabid, I think you meant to say RABID PITBULL in lipstick. Don't they put down rabid animals?

    @ac - stupid cow - our beloved, grass munching herbivore of a Home Secretary

    You now owe me a keyboard...thanks for making my day.

  62. Paul Charters

    This smacks of 'Can I, Dad?'

    Well, can I, dad? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I?

    Just accept it, it was refused, voted against, stopped, not happening.

    It shouldn't be allowed to be reviewed until after the next general election, or a different home secretary...

  63. david wilson


    Maybe the emphasis trend is partly down to Blair, but up to a point, emphasis is ignorable, or it can at least be counted as someone just trying to convey real or imagined passion if the speaker is good enough.

    However, when people who aren't naturally good speakers overdo it, especially when they play too much with the pitch of their voice, it can get to the point where it's annoying from the first word even if they happen to be talking sense.

    There are certain patterns of volume, timing and pitch that really do sound like a primary school teacher talking to kids they've already written off as being a bit thick.

    If someone is talking as if the audience is dense *and* they have a smile in their voice, it's actually rather hard for them *not* to sound smug.

  64. Prag Fest
    Thumb Up

    Thanks... all of you posting, it feels good to know you're not the only sane fuck in an insane world.

  65. kain preacher

    42 days

    Hell why stop there?? lets give her 42 months, cause if you cant proof the cae in 42 days you never will.

    Is just me or has the system been skewed in such a way that no moral, reasonable person thats has logic and intelligence would run for office ??

  66. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lost it

    Smith is desparate, she feels humiliated having thought so hard to get the legislation through and failing. She lost and she really hates it. She can't handle it. Rather than just walk away from it and say "F**k it, I did my best", she's determined to get some vague form of the legislation through to satisfy her own ego. This isn't about what's good for the nation, it's about her winning, and being seen to win, to try to prove a point.

    What respect will people have for her now, that the whole issue has clearly become so personal for her, that she can't just walk away from it and forget about it.

    If she's not careful, she'll risk damaging her long term career, people want to employ people that are rational, resonable and able to make well thoughout logical decisions. She's lost the plot.

  67. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lost it

    "You say "I'm guessing the next move is to start dismantling the upper house so they can push through any bill they damn well like."

    I see your comment and raise you The Parliament Act. GodEmperor Tony Bliar shoved this little gem through and it has already been used to override the Lords overturning of ill-conceived NuLabour legislation in order that "the government" (whoever is in, so not just NuLabour - wonder if the GodEmperor thought of that when he forced it through?) can decide to ignore the Lords if the old duffers dare to disagree."

    This is so f***ng true.

    Labour claimed the rationale behing restructuring the house of Lords was because there are a large number of Lords that are appointed, and that's not democratic.

    Well, if you ask me it seems to work ! Why change it? Change it and there's a risk it won't work so well.

    As I discovered yesterday, a key difference between the House of Lords and the House of Commons is that the Lords are quote, "not whipped so much", unquote!

    (Always thought politicians were a bit kinky). So, the HoL are not under such tight disciplinary control as the MPs in the House of Commons. Thank God for that.

    So, this will be one key reason why the House of Lords don't just do what the Labour Party and Labour government want them to do.

    Bring on the elected house, to make it more democratically fair, as the Mr. Blair claims, pretty obvious, what will happen, the more labour party MPs there in the HoC the more Labour Lords in the HoL, there will be even less chance of stupid legislation being blocked.

    It's nothing to do with democracy, it's about control, it's about ensuring that the daft legislation being proposed by Labour politicians is pushed through.

    For far too long Labour had a massive overwhelming majoriy in the House of Commons and there was no way anyone could stop the rediculous legislation being passed, and boy, haven't we got tons of the crap now.

    Britain is not a democracy. No way.

  68. John Stirling

    I have no problem with extended detention provided...

    ...that the people empowered with it are incorruptible, and wouldn't use the powers inappropriately.

    Oh fuck.

    well, at least the prime minister of Iceland will only have to wait 28 days to be released now.

  69. Thomas Baker
    Thumb Down

    Hmm, seems pretty clear.

    All those in favour say aye: ... . ... .. .. sound of tumble weed scritch-scratching across the car-park.

    All those against say nay: 60,000,000 voices sing out in unison - NAY!!!!

    Heard that Jacqui? Want me to turn it up? You tit.

  70. RogueElement

    Idiots guide to democracy

    1 - present stupid idea to parliament - gets rejected because it is really stupid and probably illegal

    2 - re-present stupid idea to parliament - gets rejected because it is still stupid

    3 - present the bill a third time - bill is passed because it has been presented three times. Case closed. Hurrah. Aren't you glad we live in a democracy.

    PS... Sarah - glad to know you are not one of those hard nosed bitches.... let's do something really dirty together... like vote.

  71. david wilson


    >>"I see your comment and raise you The Parliament Act. GodEmperor Tony Bliar shoved this little gem through and it has already been used to override the Lords overturning of ill-conceived NuLabour legislation in order that "the government" (whoever is in, so not just NuLabour - wonder if the GodEmperor thought of that when he forced it through?) can decide to ignore the Lords if the old duffers dare to disagree."

    >>"And aint it funny how Bliar was going to get rid of the House of Lords until they let him have The Parliament Act... hmm. "

    Anyone reading that might think that

    a) Blair (born in 1953) was responsible for the Parliament Acts (of 1911 and 1949)

    b) He somehow forced the lords to agree the pre-existing acts were valid. In fact, the most the Law Lords did was to unanimously confirm the view of the High Court and the Court of Appeal that the 1949 act was indeed valid.

  72. Mark

    @david wilson

    However, I can't think of any use of these acts when we weren't actually at war (you know, a real one with declaration and enemy and all that stuff).

    Whereas Tony (pause) Blair raised it for a REALLY STUPID FUCKING IDEA. An Idea that although it was wanted by a large section of the public wasn't really what the parliament act was meant to cover.

  73. david wilson


    >>"I can't think of any use of these acts when we weren't actually at war (you know, a real one with declaration and enemy and all that stuff)."


    Which are the usages you remember from *during* wartime?

    As far as I understood things, the reason there was a Parliament Act in the first place was the large Conservative bias in the Lords, which was acting against convention and pursuing its own party agenda.

    That wasn't in wartime.

    In fact, as far as I can see, of the times the Acts were used, not one was in wartime, and indeed the first two times it was used (just before WWI), both pieces of resulting legislation ended up delayed until 2 years after the war finished.

    Equally, none of the pieces of legislation enacted under the acts seem to have had much to do with war, except for the 1991 War Crimes Act

    It's interesting how you're an authority on what the act was meant to cover, when like the AC I was replying to, you don't seem to know much else about it.

  74. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just woundering

    When is the last time a politician was shot in the UK ? Not that I'm advocating it but it seems the more I see Jacqui name on the reg it seems like some of the readers are close to doing just that.

  75. Rachel

    venus and mars

    Yo, well done david wilson.

    "Of course, that does lead on to pondering whether the problem all along wasn't actually that men were in control, but that the system resulted in a particular kind of person succeeding, and that just as with women, the men who succeed aren't necessarily representative of men in general."

  76. Mark

    @david wilson

    "both pieces of resulting legislation ended up delayed until 2 years after the war finished."

    Which could be misleading me.

    But if you'd rather cast scorn...

    What ever makes you feel good, big man.

  77. david wilson


    >>"But if you'd rather cast scorn..."

    >>"What ever makes you feel good, big man."

    This from the person quite happy to say that a majority of the population is 'fucking stupid' to have a particular opinion. Whether or not you're actually right in that view, you're not exactly someone who shrinks from being critical of their fellow man, or even their fellow entire country.

    *You* were the one with the strong opinions on what the act was 'meant' to cover, effectively saying "These politicians are using legislation completely counter to the way it was intended"

    Now, most people I know would base an opinion like that on some kind of knowledge (or a few dozen seconds of research) on how the act came about and what the people who created it intended it to be used for.

    If I was actually replying to someone who had already said that someone else didn't know what *they* were talking about, I'd probably make an extra-special effort to make sure I knew what *I* was talking about, but maybe that's just the engineer in me, preferring to invest time in research than waste time being wrong.

  78. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Get her out of office!

  79. david wilson

    Isn't there just a little bit of irony... having someone urging people to sign a petition not even having the confidence to say who they are themselves?

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