And on it rumbles, on and on and on. One of British politics’ bona fide dinosaurs, Ken Clarke has, as is his wont, now embroiled himself in the ongoing Article 50 farrago. As reported across the media on Saturday 20 August, Clarke in his upcoming book, alludes to 100 Tory MPs being prepared to block what is popularly referred to as the triggering of Article 50 ( of the Lisbon Treaty which came into effect on December 1, 2009). The parliamentary Labour Party for example, split roughly 200 to 20 MPs in favour of Vote Remain. The Liberal Democrats, SNP, Sinn Fein and Plaid Cymru also lined up on the Remain side. So the idea that the House of Commons could quite comfortably torpedo Brexit remains a plausible threat and a clear and present danger. It would be mischief on the grandest possible scale. Whether or not the H.o.C. has the collective cojones to actually do this, is I believe balanced on the proverbial knife’s edge. In any political campaign for any given objective, momentum is just about everything.Winning an argument is not the same as defeating the counter argument; ideally both occur at round about the same time otherwise a surly,quasi-defeated opponent will seek to recover all the ground lost in the initial campaign struggle. And if they’re allowed to get away with that, it’s the quasi-victorious side that finds itself on the defensive and the entire matter of legitimacy of the victory just won is called into question. And then on it rumbles and on and on. The once axiomatic dictum that History is written by the Winners is itself undermined. At this moment in time the Losers are actively preventing the Winners from getting on with writing that history.Of course once upon a time the State took a much more jaundiced view on matters of who won got to write history. In some ways it’s a pity that we got rid of the Sedition Act 1661.
- causing hatred or contempt, or incit[ing] disaffection against the Crown, the government, constitution, either House of Parliament or the administration of justice;
- to incite subjects to unlawfully attempt to alter matters of the church or state that were established by law;
- to incite crime or disturbances of the peace; raise discontent or disaffection amongst the Crown’s subjects; or
- to promote feelings of ill will and hostility between different social classes of the Crown’s subjects.
Now that was one heck of a piece of robust legislation and so practical and purposeful, don’t you think?