Brexit has exposed the failure of Parliamentary democracy.
Does sovereignty reside in the people, the Parliament or the sovereign? Neither. Whatever sovereignty Parliament has, it was handed over to the European Union, or at least partially so because the European Parliament’s representative in the Brexit negotiations Guy Verhofstat wants even more.
Another aspect of parliamentary failure has been noted by many commentators that 77% of MPs in the House of Commons are Remainers and will not implement Brexit simpliciter with a clean break. Attempts to reverse the Brexit Referendum result has taken various forms but no commentator known to me has mentioned that this disconnect between MPs in the House of Commons and the voting public is not a new phenomenon.
There are repeated examples.
The first most obvious one is capital punishment. After the abolition of capital punishment in 1965 the number of murders steadily increased until knife crime is now out of control. Witnessing this rise in the early decades the public often wanted to restore capital punishment, but MPs thought that they knew better than the public and voted to retain it. Various arguments were used about 1. the inadequacy of deterrence, 2. miscarriages of justice, 3. subscription to international conventions and agreements, 4. state murder, etc., but in the end it came down to “we know best” – the same attitude as Remainers towards Brexit.
Another example is abortion. Although it is manifest that the majority of abortions are ‘social abortions’, denied by the campaign to legalise abortion in 1967, and in spite of improved knowledge about in utero development and improved medical resuscitation of premature births, MPs still vote as if “we know best” – the same attitude as Remainers towards Brexit.
Having persuaded so many women to choose abortion, this choice is now central to their thinking so that it is almost impossible without the grace of God to change their thinking. For them to acknowledge fault will raise issues of guilt that they would rather suppress than face. The Gospel deals with that guilt, but most of them do not know the Gospel.
However, this “we know best” attitude is widespread in human affairs. It led to the decline of Christianity in the western world. Beginning with biblical criticism in which the ‘experts’ undermined the confidence of ordinary people in the Bible, who were unprepared for an academic assault upon the Bible’s teaching at many levels.
As biblical Christianity teaches critical thinking and confidence to stand against peer-group pressure, the loss of Christianity created a compliant population who allow their MPs to contradict the wishes of the people. It is part of the judgment of God upon a disobedient people that they are left to their own devices under the bondage of dogmatic and self-assured leadership.
This shows how difficult it will be to reform the UK. Until there is a general appreciation for truth and love, people will continue to tolerate lies, hatred and this culture of death.
17 Dec 2018 Parliament against the people.
12 Apr 2019: my protest against our parliamentarians failing to deliver Brexit on time is here.
31 Oct 2019: BBC Newsnight’s countdown to Brexit 3 after its failure to note the Brexit 2 deadline on 12 Apr 2019.