The Professors passion for "The Science of Deceit" started here...

Employed by the Ministry (in a covert capacity) to help introduce the law ending dishonest politics, you can see his hand all over the posts of past.

Current political circumstances have forced him to reveal himself and as we speak, MPs are signing up to re-introduce The Elected Representatives (Prohibition of Deception) Bill for debate with over 80,000 voters supporting them.

Posts before Jan '08 are purely for the record (with hindsight they make fascinating reading). Posts after May 13th mark the Professor's return.


Meet the Professor

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

a manifesto (of sorts)

We, the people, are sovereign.

We grant this sovereignty to our elected representatives in Parliament.

Whilst representing our sovereignty, our elected representatives have fundamental obligations to be honest, transparent and accountable to us.

For a breach of these fundamental obligations we are entitled to formal, legal, independent redress.

Existing methods of holding our elected representatives to account if they make misleading, misrepresentative statements purporting to be statements of fact or withhold material information are ;

  1. the general election
  2. not independent, legal or formal.

General elections are infrequent and inappropriate for holding individual elected representatives to account.

Other current mechanisms amount to self-regulation - conflicting with the rule of law and separation of powers. They are inappropriate for holding individual elected representatives and government ministers to account.

WE ARE ENTITLED TO FORMAL, LEGAL, INDEPENDENT REDRESS FOR ANY BREACH OF THE FUNDAMENTAL OBLIGATION OF HONESTY


11 comments:

  1. Would the new law apply only to an MP’s statements after they have been elected, or would it also apply to their pre-election manifestos?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ginger Kilroy Silk13 Feb 2007, 17:08:00

    Surely should apply to all statements, irrespective of pre//post//or mid-election.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ginger Kilroy Silk said...
    "Surely should apply to all statements, irrespective of pre//post//or mid-election."

    You can't possibly be serious about prosecuting a politician for making an election promise that doesn't pan out because of a change in circumstances. This is the real world.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ginger, pre-election there is no 'contract' which has been breached so how would you be able to prove damages? That would be like suing your mum for lying to you.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Pre-election, if an elected representative lies they still have an obligation to be honest. That contract was enterred into at the previous election. And of course, if they subsequently were elected on the basis of a lie - they'd have obtained our sovereignty by deceit/deception.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Legal eagle, I agree that if an MP were being re-elected they would evidently be in breach of their contract if they lied during the campaign, but I think lawbunny is talking about the very first time a prospective representative runs for election. In that case, they would not already have a prior obligation to be truthful. If the law were not retroactive, it would give first-time candidates an advantage (the right to lie unimpeded) through a legal loophole.

    If, however, the law was retroactive, there might arise the laughable situation in which a candidate is caught lying during a campaign, but you then have to wait until after he is elected before you charge him with committing an offence. One would hope that if the candidate is shown to be a liar he would not then be elected, but hey, it has happened before…

    ReplyDelete
  7. St Quintin, yes thats what I was getting at. In summary:
    a) If a person running for election but not yet within the contractual relationship is liable, then aren't we all?
    b)If they aren't liable they have obtained our sovereignty by deceit.
    Very problematic....

    ReplyDelete
  8. At the very least, one should be able to remove the MP from office if he is proven to have lied before being elected. If we keep the comparison with contract law, it would be similar to an agreement being entered into under false pretenses. As far as I know, the injured party in the agreement can sue to have the contract voided in such a case.

    ReplyDelete
  9. You said, "WE ARE ENTITLED TO FORMAL, LEGAL, INDEPENDENT REDRESS FOR ANY BREACH OF THE FUNDAMENTAL OBLIGATION OF HONESTY".

    You're mistaken.

    ReplyDelete
  10. *rolls eyes*

    But the point is, we should be entitled to redress...

    ReplyDelete