Monday, 23 April 2012 13:39

April 23

St George's day will probably pass more or less unnoticed as usual, since our phyrric victory in WW2 and our loss of empire and superpower status we haven't really done patriotism with any enthusiasm.

Our Illiberal Dimocrats want a fully elected House of Lords, the hereditary principle seems indefensible as does the automatic inclusion of the bishops of what has become a marginal religion. The other parties want to retain the right to appoint lords to the 'upper' house to preserve their influence there.

I have a far more radical idea. If democracy works through a system of checks and balances then what we actually need is a non-democratic check on democracy itself. The monarchy no longer really provides this. Thus we should have a RANDOMLY SELECTED upper house. A few hundred people picked at random off the electoral rolls with absolute power of veto over parliament. After all we trust this principle in our courts of law, twelve citizens at random for the jury, to moderate the power of the judiciary.

Such an upper house would contain a representative selection of all age and income groups and sexes by virtue of its randomness.

Let us hope that Francois Hollande wins in France. His policies display the usual economic illiteracy of socialism but they do have the virtue that they will hasten the breakup of the single currency and hopefully the entire cursed European Union.

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