Wednesday, May 21, 2014

jolt for democracy

This blog is on record in approving of Tory MP Rory Stewart, and Labour MP Paul Flynn, which makes it gratifying to read Paul Flynn's comments on Rory Stewart's election as chair of the Commons defence select committee.
Just as politics was slipping into a coma of torpor an electrifying jolt jerks it into new life.
It could not have happened without the Wright reforms. They continue to deliver. Rory Stewart was unelectable by the whips as a Select Committee Chairman. He is not biddable, has a unique hinterland of extraordinary achievements and possesses a working brain-all traits that disqualify him from promotion by the neurotically controlling whips.
The Defence Select Committee, under Rory, will metamorphose from passive collaborating cheerleaders for the war party into a critical voice of objective reason. That's if the other establishment committee members allow him to lead. The rough democracy that the Wright reforms imposed of the election of chairs produced a range of eight Tory hopefuls with a wide spectrum of opinions.
Coincidentally, I am 81% of the way through reading Stewart's The Places In Between. (My kindle tells me 81%. This is not the kind of figure I keep in my head.) The book is about his solo walk across north-central Afghanistan in 2002, at the American invasion and occupation after the events set in motion by 9/11.

Maybe http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/defence-committee/ will be worth keeping an eye on now.
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