David Blunket has written this over at the Times where he examines the new Supreme Court UK. We have covered this issue extensively and will be at the opening of this grand mistake at its opening on the 12th of October, providing pictures and commentary. Consider this very important paragraph as posted by Mr. Blunket
"The problem is that we do not have, and with the new constitutional affairs legislation still will not have, clarity about how, within that separation, we ensure that the judges do their bit to stay independent of political interference but that parliament has the final say on the laws of the land. The sooner we get this sorted, the better. That means ensuring that judges have the power to intervene and to rule against ministers when they exceed the power granted to them by the elected parliament but, on the other hand, that they do not have the power to decide that parliament is wrong or that somehow it should change its mind."It seems that "independent" in this context is more or less synonymous with unaccountable. It certainly does not mean that the new Court will not have an activist agenda, at odds with that of the elected Government of the day, and remote from the values and concerns of the majority of the British public.
Judicial activism is not a new phenomenon in the UK. The principle of the supremacy of EC over domestic law, and more recently the Human Rights Act, have allowed foreign (ECJ/ECHR) and UK courts effectively to overrule Acts of Parliament. The creation of the new Supreme Court will only accelerate this trend.
The new Court could not have come into being at a worse time. The power and prestige of Parliament are at a very low ebb. In the wake of the expenses scandal, it is difficult to see the Commons reasserting itself against the executive and the party whips, let alone mounting an effective challenge to a confident and self-aggrandizing new Supreme Court. I despair of Parliamentary democracy in this country.
What is the solution then? Well the Law Lords cost the tax payer £2,000,000 a year which is a highly respectable figure if you were to compare it to the working cost of say the American Supreme Court or the Palais the Justice in France. Basically that is to say that the annual cost of the highest court in the UK is a hell of a lot less than most countries, if any comparable to the size and geopolitical status of the UK. Well, the new Supreme Court UK will have an annual budget of £60,000,000 (sixty million pounds compared to two million for the Law Lords).
This is a supremely stupid way of fixing something that does not need mending. The Law Lords worked perfectly fine and were tremendously respected throughout the world particularly because they functioned in such a good way despite they being part of the legislative process (and I say 'despite' not in a derogatory manner since over the past century them being in the House of Lords seems to have had little effect on the legislation, if anything it provided the best legal advice the House could ever have wished for). As with everything with this government they seek to destroy pretty much everything that once used to define Great Britain, and they are doing a spectacularly good job of it at that. The only advise I can offer to the income government is basically repeal the Constitutional Reform Act 2005. You will have saved in the money building the Supreme Court UK, within two years - the building and everything surrounding it has to date added £66,000,000 to the tax payers bill.
And again before you leave this blog let me draw your sincere attention to the emblem posted at the beginning of this entry. Notice the distinct lack of the St. Edwards Crown instituted in 1954 to be part of all governmental emblems. It seems that this government has taken it upon itself to abolish Royal Prerogative as well. I will post my mails regarding this issue with the Ministry of Justice once everything has been finalised. Stay tuned.