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John Strafford
Beaconsfield
Interests: Democracy, History, Politics
Recent Activity
The most significant part of this poll is that everyone without exception has dropped in popularity.
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Michael, The Pitcairn islands gave the vote to women in 1838, some 80 years before the UK did it. Perhaps the Conservative Party could learn something about democracy from them!
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I could go along with that. Wouldn't it be refreshing to have such a democratic process. It would certainly increase the number of members attending the conference.
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It is time that the Chairman of the Candidates Committee should be elected by and accountable to all Party members at an Annual General Meeting of the Party. Only then will we eliminate the bias which each Chairman brings to the role.
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Michael, You set a good example to all. Let us hope that others will follow.
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Michael, You should now ask a supplementary question: Which countries, where the President or Head of State has a private jet, receive Overseas Aid from the United Kingdom?
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Fiona, You must have been reading George Orwell's 1984. To call something a debate does not mean it was a debate. There was no motion for debate, there was no proposer and seconder, there were no standing orders and there was no vote. Speakers had two minutes to speak. End result: froth and soundbites. If you want real participation then have real debates. Do not insult member's intelligence.
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It is nice to have some positive stuff amidst all the gloom.
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With all its faults you cannot beat historic cost accounting. We should stick with it.
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Once elected who are the new Lords accountable to? Democracy is about being accountable to the people. Being able to get rid of someone is as important as the ability to elect them in the first place.
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Christopher, You forgot to mention Winston Churchill's view of First Past the Post expressed on 22 May 1909: "I think," said Mr. Churchill, "the present system has clearly broken down. The results produced are not fair to any party, nor to any section of the community. In many cases they do not secure majority representation, nor do they secure an intelligent representation of minorities. All they secure is fluke representation, freak representation, capricious representation."
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Phil Gallie was a strong supporter of the Conservatives in Northern Ireland. At the crucial party conference when it was agreed that the people of Northern Ireland should be allowed to join the Conservative Party Phil received a well deserved standing ovation for supporting them.
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Hear, Hear.
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I sent a copy of my article to Baroness Warsi, together with a covering letter. Her office responded as follows: "We appreciate you taking time to write and for bringing your views about the structure, organisation and strategic direction of the Party to our attention. We do appreciate all the feedback and comments that we receive." Gone are the days when the Party Chairman would address the points you make. Now you just get a standard reply as your letter is swept under the carpet. Just one more reason why we need a Chairman accountable to Party members.
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Elaine, Winston Churchill was elected an MP for Manchester North West in the 1906 General Election. When Campbell-Bannerman was succeeded as Prime Minister by Herbert Henry Asquith in 1908, Churchill was promoted to the Cabinet as President of the Board of Trade. Under the practise at the time, a newly appointed Cabinet Minister was obliged to seek re-election at a by-election; Churchill lost his seat in the by-election but was soon back as a member for the Dundee constituency. The practise of holding a by-election on promotion to the Cabinet died out later.
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Parliament is already sovereign. You do not need a law to state that fact. Once you have a law it becomes justiciable. What happens if a future Parliament repeals it? Is it then not sovereign?
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Pick some fancy titles, throw in some meaningless prose, launch it with a big fanfare, then watch it die as those proposing it move on. Democracy and political parties are built from the grass roots upwards, not dictat downwards. When this is learnt we will begin to improve. Until then the downward slide will continue.
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How do real people find out when and where these meetings are?
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The person with the over-riding concern for the Conservative Party should be the Party Chairman, but until the Party Chairman is elected by and accountable to the party members it will not happen.
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John Strafford is now following SuperBlue
Jun 11, 2010
Justin, We also won 304 other seats without spending £40,000 on a postal primary. Many of those other seats also had MP expense problems, so where is the difference?
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Tim, How do you judge the primaries in Totnes and Gosport were a success? In Gosport the turnout was the national average. the swing was 1.27% from Lib Dems to Conservative, hardly dramatic. In Totnes the turnout hardly changed, up less than one per cent. The swing to Conservatives from Lib Dems 2.27% I do not belittle the winners of these seats but these results hardly seem to suggest a great achievement, so why are we going to spend £8 million on replicating the process. The big disadvantage is that the value of being a party member is diminished.
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It was Disraeli that brought in the 1867 Reform Act. It was a Conservative/Liberal coalition that extended the franchise to all men and gave the franchise to women over 30 in 1918 and it was the Conservatives that gave the vote to women over 21 in 1928. The Conservative record on electoral reform is good. It is also Conservative policy to have an elected House of Lords. Where there has been resistance is to having a democratic Conservative Party. Its time has come!
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Isn't it time the Conservative Party had a democratic constitution which could only be changed by a majority of its members on the basis of one member one vote? If we want democracy sign the petition at http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/partiesdemocracy/
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