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Nominations For Vacant Legco Position.


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I have just renamed my cat Miles Illium Kerruish Kerruish Kerruish Kerruish Kerruish Kerruish Kerruish Kerruish

 

I trust he will be elevated to Legco instantly

 

And all his decendants after him for time immemorial

 

Never a truer word!

Was going to nominate Orry the rumpy but he cannot compete with such illustrious ancestry.

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As I posted previously:   Being an MHK should automatically preclude you from LegCo. Christ but these political rejects, because that's what they are, have some neck...

Why so shocking? I am a long standing and enthusiastic fan of football united and enjoy watching a good game of soccer ball over a tumbler of pinted beer.   Alright. That's a massive lie: I stole

If you'd been following the long standing conversation here about Craine's possible elevation to LegCo, you would have realised that the 'affront' bit usually refers to the possibility of her landing

I would like to see someone from the private sector who has achieved something tangible with experience of dealing with people at the top level. Just recycling our failed or retired politicians is ludicrous and just gives us more of the same at a time where we are pitifully short of ideas and dynamics!

There must be retired people out there on the island with business acumen and 'the right stuff'?

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MLCs are not some sort of super MHK. These sometimes rather sleepy heads have a particular function and that is to scrutinise legislation, which has usually been through the course of the House of Keys anyway. So the 11 of them shuffle papers and pontificate and make out they are doing something useful for the Island.

 

100 years ago they did have a use. In those days few people were literate and the wise old men of the Legislative Council were the true power house of the parliament, and they were learned and experienced men.

 

These days they are generally greyed-out MHKs who are well past their sell-by date but who still have plenty of ego to use up. And take £50k a year to do so.

 

One perceived advantage of the LegCo is that it is able to bring people directly into Tynwald who do not need to stand the test of public scrutiny. We have a retired policeman there, who in theory at least is able to bring his life experience into Tynwald. And a broadcaster, who is an all round nice bloke and plays some nice country tunes on the radio and has a fair bit of experience reporting politics. So I think it could be argued that he is of some use, maybe. But I'm not too sure.

 

Although it has a use in principle, the Legislative Council as it stands needs to be abolished.

 

Abolished.

 

But we don't like change, so please someone, argue that it needs to stay.

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You all mistake the history and function of LegCo. our parliament is Tynwald, it divides for legislation to be passed and yes LegCo is not popularly elected, has adopted a secondary revising role, but it is not the House of Lords in Manxland. It is a constituent of Tynwald and its members have just the same powers as other Tynwald members form the other branch, except that they can only delay legislation..

 

It does not need to be abolished, it needs to be reinvigorated with direct elections, but we also need to get away from the idea that all tynwald members should be on a department or board, only CoMin should be there as the executive. They may also have hangers on , ie backbenchers who get placemen jobs, but the reset should be on the select committees and in opposition scrutinising and holding to account.

 

That means we need parties or blocs who stand at election on a common platform of policy, have a leader who is CM candidate material, and that we have an independent opposition instead of everyone being perceived as on the gravy train and all in government.

 

We need at least 33 to have an independent and effective opposition, we need all members of Tynwald to be engaged in something, the LegCo members need to be used much more effectively, but that does not equate to being a political member for £10,000 and to give unconditional support, whichever branch you happen to be in.

 

Of course 100 years ago they were the AG, 3 judges, Water Bailiff and a couple of cronies of the Governor, all crown appointments who could, and did, block the Keys, 150 years ago they were all Governor appointees in both branches; time to take that final step to democracy. We spent the 1970's and 1980's getting rid of the appointees and now they are all elected by the Keys, who appear not to be very keen on doing so based on the last few elections, apart from the Bishop and the AG, who sit ex officio.

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It does not need to be abolished, it needs to be reinvigorated with direct elections,

 

This just ends up with us adding yet another constitutional fudge to Tynwald, this time where there's two chambers, both with the same public mandate but with different and sometimes conflicting roles. The UK situation just about manages to work because the preeminence of the Commons is possible due to the unelected nature of the Lords, whereas the US situation works because there's a far greater separation between Senate and Representatives with one representing each state as a whole and the other its constituent parts. By comparison, a directly elected LegCo simply doesn't make any sense.

 

That means we need parties or blocs who stand at election on a common platform of policy, have a leader who is CM candidate material, and that we have an independent opposition instead of everyone being perceived as on the gravy train and all in government.

 

Parties/blocs stand to simply further entrench the existing weaknesses and flaws of Tynwald. In theory, it would work, if said parties were balanced in support; in practice you're likely just to see a replication of the Westminster situation where the strongest party is in a position to act as a temporary dictatorship until such a point where its supporters finally grow disillusioned. If anything, a party system could be used to undermine any attempt to dilute the power of CoMin, by simply redirecting that power and influence through patronage through party structures rather than the structure of Tynwald itself.

 

The more I think about it, the more I think that the only practical way of fixing the current system and eliminating the dominance of CoMin is to adopt a complete separation between the executive and the rest of Tynwald in a presidential-like system; the small size of our parliament almost ensures that this is the only way we can really eliminate the kind of patronage and horse trading the current system allows and which our politicians have shown themselves only too ready to abuse.

Edited by VinnieK
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All this talk about who to put in,should we vote for them,should we keep them,forget it,GET RID,just think of all the money which could be saved,so why keep them,all this crap about revising chamber,they are just a block to the KEYS,are they saying that the MHKs are not up to the job of legislating for us?,if so,why did we vote them in?.

By keeping Legco it is only delaying legislation which the people want,and to which the Keys debated for the benefit of the people,Douglas Corporation years ago got rid of the Aldermen/Women,the Corpy didn't collapse as a result,so what is the problem?,maybe if we got rid of Legco Teare could give us 3p off the litre of petrol.

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It does not need to be abolished, it needs to be reinvigorated with direct elections,

 

This just ends up with us adding yet another constitutional fudge to Tynwald, this time where there's two chambers, both with the same public mandate but with different and sometimes conflicting roles. The UK situation just about manages to work because the preeminence of the Commons is possible due to the unelected nature of the Lords, whereas the US situation works because there's a far greater separation between Senate and Representatives with one representing each state as a whole and the other its constituent parts. By comparison, a directly elected LegCo simply doesn't make any sense.

 

That means we need parties or blocs who stand at election on a common platform of policy, have a leader who is CM candidate material, and that we have an independent opposition instead of everyone being perceived as on the gravy train and all in government.

 

Parties/blocs stand to simply further entrench the existing weaknesses and flaws of Tynwald. In theory, it would work, if said parties were balanced in support; in practice you're likely just to see a replication of the Westminster situation where the strongest party is in a position to act as a temporary dictatorship until such a point where its supporters finally grow disillusioned. If anything, a party system could be used to undermine any attempt to dilute the power of CoMin, by simply redirecting that power and influence through patronage through party structures rather than the structure of Tynwald itself.

 

The more I think about it, the more I think that the only practical way of fixing the current system and eliminating the dominance of CoMin is to adopt a complete separation between the executive and the rest of Tynwald in a presidential-like system; the small size of our parliament almost ensures that this is the only way we can really eliminate the kind of patronage and horse trading the current system allows and which our politicians have shown themselves only too ready to abuse.

 

We need at least 33 to have an independent and effective opposition, we need all members of Tynwald to be engaged in something, the LegCo members need to be used much more effectively, but that does not equate to being a political member for £10,000 and to give unconditional support, whichever branch you happen to be in.

 

 

I agree with VinnieK - a presidential style separation of the executive and the legislature is the logical way forward

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The more I think about it, the more I think that the only practical way of fixing the current system and eliminating the dominance of CoMin is to adopt a complete separation between the executive and the rest of Tynwald in a presidential-like system; the small size of our parliament almost ensures that this is the only way we can really eliminate the kind of patronage and horse trading the current system allows and which our politicians have shown themselves only too ready to abuse.

I've been considering pretty much exactly the same thing since the thread about Allan's "We are all in Government together" Government. The mediocre standard of the general election candidates has led me to believe that, realistically, a unicameral parliamentary structure, as I've previously advocated, isn't particularly appealling either.

Edited by triskelion
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I've been considering pretty much exactly the same thing since the thread about Allan's "We are all in Government together" Government. The mediocre standard of the general election candidates has led me to believe that, realistically, a unicameral parliamentary structure, as I've previously advocated, isn't particularly appealling either.

 

Well, I think you were right with getting rid of LegCo and the argument you made for that was and still is convincing. It's just that it was aimed at eradicating the constitutional nonsense that is LegCo, so didn't really do enough to deal with cronyism of Tynwald or address the imbalance of power in there. Granted, enlarging the keys at the expense of LegCo might dilute some of CoMin's power, but not by enough. I think it's pretty clear now that our politicians think absolutely nothing of exploiting and abusing the ministerial and membership system, and would probably do so just as shamelessly in an enlarged Keys (though I'm possibly still in favour of expanding the keys).

 

I really do think it's got to the point where a proper separation of powers between the Keys and the Executive is really the only hope we now have of achieving a decent, functioning parliament. We might also benefit from not having parties, thus avoiding the ideological deadlock that sometimes occurs in the U.S. system.

 

Unfortunately, there's one obvious and depressing sticking point: such a system isn't likely to ever come to pass. All MHK's are fully aware that the current system can be manipulated to benefit them a great deal, whether they get a cabinet position or not, so it would take something just short of a miracle, or a revolution (or perhaps a disaster) to achieve any kind of constitutional change other than the usual ineffectual and insincere tinkering.

 

EDITED TO ADD: A further problem is that we'd need a proper written constitution to lay out the limits and boundaries of power. Ignoring for a moment whether this is even possible given our constitutional relationship with the UK, who'd write it? Certainly I doubt many in the current bunch are up to the task, unless we wanted it to consist of "I are the big king of youse!" written over and over again in green crayon.

Edited by VinnieK
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Regards the new Legco member to be, the Dept of Health has only one member, could it be that Allan Bell has someone in mind for the vacant seat and knows that they will be suitable for the Health Dept ?

 

No, how could he know who it will be?

 

 

Backbench opposition can be created if those MHKs outside Comin had any balls. The patronage system that keeps them in line could be removed by the body of the Keys selecting/electing the Dept members and possibly havng the power to remove them as well.

 

Comin would not like this, it would remove their influence over the House and they would, ideally, want to chose their own members.

 

For all that we call them, MHKs are not stupid, well not too stupid, I think that they could be relied upon to be sensible in whom they put in each Dept. I think they would not be so stupid as to put J Houghton in Home Affairs, for example.

 

If MHKs could see the independance that this would give them, then they could consider the change without fear of the threat to their future wages.

 

Trouble is, they would have to vote for the change under the current patronage system, so would have to be sure of success.

 

Under the above system, a combined House of 26 would give a natural majority to the 'Opposition', allowing one or two yes men for the CM. but Parties could actually become too powerful.

 

Such a reduction would save some half a million in wages and admin costs per year.

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Backbench opposition can be created if those MHKs outside Comin had any balls. The patronage system that keeps them in line could be removed by the body of the Keys selecting/electing the Dept members and possibly havng the power to remove them as well.

 

The problem with this is that members then serve two masters: the rest of their colleagues on the back benches, and the minister (three if you then count his or her constituents). Then there are problems with who defines what a department member does. This isn't currently codified; ministers can delegate as much or as little responsibility as they like.

 

Also, what happens if and when a departmental member criticises, or repeatedly criticises a ministers decision? The minister can't get rid of them, even if their conflict is damaging to the running of the department, because the Keys put them in that position; it's also unreasonable, however, for the Keys to insist that the minister work with someone with whom they have irreconcilable differences.

 

I don't mean to sound dismissive, but one of the big problems with Tynwald is that it's a constitutional mess. Separating powers has the advantage of cleaning up this situation, severing avenues of patronage in their entirity, and once and for all answering the question of who does what. It also obviates the need for messy and unsavoury appointments of the Chief Minister, and creates a natural distinction between the administration of departments and the formulation of legislation.

 

By comparison, the suggestion quoted just seems to make things muddier and more complicated.

 

Also, it doesn't really deal with cronyism. All CoMin would have to do is get three MHKs on side, and they could vote in whatever member they wanted. Unless of course CoMin were excluded from the vote, but then that raises awkward questions as well, because it disadvantages some constituencies compared with others by taking away their representatives' ability to vote.

Edited by VinnieK
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We need at least 33 to have an independent and effective opposition,

Why 33? It would not be implausible to have a working Government and opposition with just 3 politicians.

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Regards the new Legco member to be, the Dept of Health has only one member, could it be that Allan Bell has someone in mind for the vacant seat and knows that they will be suitable for the Health Dept ?

 

No, how could he know who it will be?

 

Any bets on Annie?

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