As a boy I attended Box Hill high school. While I was there I saw in a cupboard, a book called The Ship Beautiful, with the subtitle A Twofold Tale. I never had the chance to read it. That was 70 years ago, but I never forgot that book. Although I had not read it, I never forgot it because the title intrigued me, and clung to my mind as if there was some purpose in it. Recently I was passing the school with my son Peter and I mentioned this book and how I had always intended, or rather hoped, to get back to that book and read it. Some time later, at Christmas, Peter gave me a copy of this old book that I last saw in about 1937. He had located it on the Internet. I was much moved to see it once again.
Hilaire Belloc and Cecil Chesterton wrote in1911, in ‘The Party System’ ‘'Instead of the Executive being controlled by the assembly, it [the Executive] controls it [the House of Commons]'. One could not get a more accurate description of House of Representatives' malpractice today. And nothing’s changed. Further, they stipulated a concise version of responsible government:
- An absolute freedom (of the public) in the selection of representatives;
- The representatives must be strictly responsible to their constituents and to no one else;
- The representatives must deliberate in perfect freedom; and
- Especially must be absolutely independent of the 'executive'
. It seems we have made no progress in nearly one hundred years. It’s high time we resolved this impasse. How?
Simple. We, the people must demand that our parliaments vote on all debates by secret (electronic) ballot. Furthermore, ministers must be appointed (and retired, sacked etc) by ballot of all the members of parliament, to restore parliamentary government (and democracy). That should put to rest the problem of ministerial responsibility.
Some may wonder, but this proposal is eminently feasible. It will cure many a political ill, creating a strong, confident, united people; and an example for others to foll0ow. They certainly need it.
Way back in