Dagger at Democracy

Please note, despite our efforts and that of many good people (although not enough people) in 2003, the Civil Contingencies Bill was later passed in 2004 by the House of Lords, this was made possible because the mainstream media remained silent!  Here we are today 2012, welcome to Soviet Britain. Perhaps we can see why we have lost ALL the small amounts of freedom we had, this is because we in Britain, were and still are, asleep. What will it take for us to do something?

2004 – We have now entered a Police State.


By Elizabeth Gray


All well-meaning people need to take action against the Civil Contingencies Bill now before the House of Lords. This extremely dangerous Bill would give the Government the legal power to put an end to democratic institutions and civil liberties in the UK. Believe it or not, it’s true. No exaggeration.

Lord Lucas, speaking in the House of Lords during the July 5th second reading, came to the point:
“Are we opening up our system to the equivalent of what happened in Germany in 1933, where it became possible for an extreme party legitimately to hijack a democracy and turn it into something totalitarian? . . . They [the New Labour Government] appear to want a role of issuing diktats.” He concluded by calling for amendments to the Bill which would safeguard our rights, “or we are signing our death warrant as a democracy”.

That is exactly the issue and the menace.
Lord Lucas was not exaggerating.

This Bill, which is not far from passage (and demands radical amendment), enables the Government to declare a State of Emergency on practically any grounds – insignificant events (e.g. “damage to property”); “threatened” insignificant events (e.g. threatened disruption of a supply of money), even a “situation” would do, and a situation occurring outside the United Kingdom would also do.

In other words, anything goes.

If Parliament then approves the State of Emergency insisted upon by the Government (most of them know how to use a rubber stamp), then the Government can effectively rule by decree – dictatorial power.

As the forthright, libertarian Lord Lucas said, “We can run on from there and ask at what point we recover our democracy.” The reader of this article can guess at the answer as well as anyone.

If the loss of democracy and civil liberties is of little concern to a particular reader, then consider the clause in the Bill that provides for the confiscation of property, “with or without compensation.”

This horrific Bill went through the House of Commons with paltry discussion, little opposition and silence from the irresponsible, corporate News Media. And the News Media remains silent as it proceeds through the House of Lords. This must not continue.

This Bill should be REJECTED OUTRIGHT
and put forward crippling amendments below**

**What kind of amendments should be proposed?

(1) Justifications for declaring an Emergency. Only an actual disaster should be grounds for declaring an Emergency. And “disaster” means a real disaster, and one that occurs within the UK.

(2) Powers granted.

No suspension of democracy.

No suspension of Parliament.

No suspension of Civil Liberties.

(3) Coalition Government. No single party dictatorship.

(4) Parliamentary Approval of the emergency by two-third vote.

One may well question why any additional powers at all should be granted to the Government. We already have Acts of Parliament that were quite sufficient for World War II and the Northern Ireland troubles. Touch them up a little if necessary, but no dictatorships here in Great Britain. No!!

What can we do in a little SPARE TIME to keep our Democracy and Civil Liberties – to take the teeth out of this subversive, anti-democratic Civil Contingencies Bill?

First, know that YOU, as an individual, have a great deal of potential influence. Legislators are not accustomed to hearing from Jo Public. (In contrast, they hear from corporations all the time.) When they do hear a sincere, reasonable opinion from a member of the Public, they immediately (explicitly or implicitly) multiply by hundreds. Why? Because they calculate that one sincere person telephoned or wrote, and therefore perhaps 300 or 500 people hold the same view but lack the initiative to communicate it to them. You can have real influence, if you’ll use it. Let me suggest what you can do, in just a little SPARE TIME.

Make some telephone calls. Just some ‘phone calls. We MUST contact members of the House of Lords and members of the News Media.


Note: Parliament has just gone on recess and returns September 7th. But you can, and should, call and leave messages now on tel: 0207 2195353. You can leave up to 3 messages with your phone call, one for each of 3 different Peers and/or MPs. You will get two sentences per message, plus your name and telephone number. So have your 2 sentences ready. Some Peers/MPs may indeed telephone you. Don’t be embarrassed or shy. They are pretty decent folk. Just get to the point because they are quite busy.

Please note: you can call and leave a message for any Peer or MP, 24 hours a day, every day of the year at 0207 2195353. Repeat: During the recess, telephone: 0207 2195353. When Lords and MPs return on September 7th, use telephone number: 0207 2193107 (Lords) and 0207 2193000 (MPs) during opening hours, and 0207 2195353 after hours and on weekends.

[In addition, you can, write a short letter. Send it to Lord or Baroness . . .,
House of Lords, London SW1A OPW.]

We need to send them messages now, and from 7th September, when Parliament resumes, we must really let them know. 15th September is the day for discussion of the Bill on the floor of the House of Lords. So, September 15th is D-Day and we must act in advance.

Between 7th September and 15th September, ask the switchboard for the Lord or Baroness. Mention your strong opposition to the Bill, and why you oppose it, and specify that tooth pulling, substantial amendments be tabled concerning the Grounds for declaring an Emergency and the Powers granted. You will probably talk to an assistant or leave a message on their message machine. More than likely you will again need to leave a 2-sentence message with the switchboard.

(The largest group in the Lords). Call Baroness Buscombe (Conservative leader on this Bill who wants to amend it. Tell her we need tooth-extracting amendments). Call other Conservative Lords (a list of Lords and their party affiliation can be found at www.parliament.uk) – they need to be stirred up by you.
Call Conservative Party leader, MP Michael Howard’s office (House of Commons switchboard 0207 2103000) or leave a message at 5353. Request he exercise leadership on this Bill and energise Conservative Lords against it. And call Conservative MPs Ian Duncan Smith and David Davis. (If one of them moves, Howard figures to get a move on.)

Liberal Democrats:
Call Lord McNally (and any other Lib Dem Lord).

Cross-Bench Peers:
They have no party, are independent, and are plentiful. Call any of them, especially the Convenor, Lord Craig (ask at the switchboard), the 12 law Lords (ask for the appropriate office), Baronesses and Countesses.

In addition to the above. Here is a shortish list of Peers I feel are well worth calling/writing a little letter. They are very likely to take up our cause if only alerted about it. (A comprehensive list will be available on this website in a few days of all potentially supportive Peers – a good 80% of Peers, if I am right.)

A message may be left by telephone at all hours every day at 0207 219 5353, and a letter sent to the House of Lords (London SW1A OPW) addressed to a Peer will get to them.

B = Baroness L = Lord. After the name, in parenthesis, will be the abbreviation of the Party (L=Labour, LD = Lib Dem, C is Conservative, CB is a non-party, Cross Bench Peer. All Labour Peers in my lists are estimated to be traditional Labourites, not the New Labour type.)

Here is a shortish list of Peers I feel are well worth calling/writing a little letter. They are very likely to take up our cause if only alerted about it. (A comprehensive list will follow after some days of all potentially supportive Peers – a good 80% of Peers, if I am right.)

A message may be left by telephone at all hours every day at 0207 219 5353, and a letter sent to the House of Lords (London SW1A OPW) addressed to a Peer will get to them.

To Help RESCUE BRITISH DEMOCRACY, telephone/write some of these people below and insist they reject and table wrecking amendments to this evil Civil Contingencies Bill.

Important Email Adresses
B. Barker (LD); B. Buscombe (the Conservative leader on the bill, she’s important), buscombeP@parliament.uk; L. Clinton-Davis (L); L. Craig (Convenor of the Cross Bench Peers), craigd@parliament.uk; L. Dubs (L) DubsA@parliament.uk; B. Howe of Idlicote (CB) howeE@parliament.uk; B. Howells of St. Davids (L); L. Lester (LD), lesterA@parliament.uk
L. McCluskey (CB); L. Neill (CB), Pneill@serlecourt.ac.uk B. Nicholson (LD), Enicholson@europarl.eu.int L. Rea (L), reajn@parliament.uk; L. Scarman (CB), a judge and human rights supporter, please contact him ; L. Thomas of Swynnerton (CB)

News Media:
Nick Cohen, columnist at the Observer (0207 2782332); Michael White, political editor of the Guardian (0207 2782332, same tel. as Observer); Daily Mail – very important to get to this newspaper – political editor David Hughes, journalists Simon Heffer, Geoffrey Lean and Graeme Wilson (0207 9386000); Daily Mirror editor Oonagh Blackman (0207 2933000); The Independent, political editor Andrew Grice (0207 005 2000); Sun – Political editor Trevor Kavanagh (0207 7824100) and email address trevor.kavanagh@the-sun.co.uk

Important sites:
Statewatch criticised the Bill sharply see http://www.statewatch.com/
Freedom Association: http://www.tfa.net
New Alliance http://www.newalliance.org.uk

Published in 2003 in Namaste Magazine Vol 7 Issue 2
PO Box 127, Shrewsbury SY3 7WS
Email: info@namastepublishing.co.uk
Tele: + 44 (0)1743 341303

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