Smokescreen for Four Wasted Years

Daily Mail (London), November 24, 2004 | Go to article overview

Smokescreen for Four Wasted Years


Byline: EDWARD HEATHCOAT AMORY

AFTER four moribund years in which the Government has achieved virtually nothing beyond taking Britain into a disastrous foreign war, Tony Blair is now desperate to give the impression that his party is bursting with ideas for a third term in office.

But this Queen's Speech has no thoughts on solving the fundamental problems of health, education, crime, and asylum.

Instead, it is a dangerous cocktail of the trivial and the damaging which will encourage the compensation culture, increase red tape and stoke up the class war.

Very few bills will make a positive impact on Britain, even if they become law, which most won't because there isn't nearly enough time before the expected election in May.

Together, they reflect a Government that has come to mistake mere activity for political purpose. The following represents the worst of a bad bunch.

CHARITIES BILL: Supposedly about modernising the charity sector, but actually part of the Government's class war agenda, as it is aimed at removing charitable status from private schools, leading to a massive increase in their fees, and forcing middle class parents back to the state sector.

CONSTITUTIONAL REFORM BILL: The Government is still trying to sort out the mess left by its decision to get rid of the Lord Chancellorship last year without thinking through what would happen next.

This Bill will create a supreme court, continuing the process of politicising our judges that Labour began when it passed the Human Rights Act.

CORPORATE MANSLAUGHTER BILL: A sop to the trade unions, as it will hold 'bosses' to account after industrial or transport disasters.

Properly drafted it would be sensible, but expect Labour backbenchers to use it to create a new class of capitalist scapegoats.

CROSSRAIL BILL: To enable the building of Crossrail (a rail link across London), but there is only one problem - no one has any idea where the money to pay for it is coming from, so we will have a shiny new law, but no new railway.

EQUALITY BILL: Expect a further explosion of the compensation culture when this Bill creates a new equality superquango that will not only draw up laws on age, religious and sexual discrimination, but will then conduct inquiries into whether those laws have been broken. …

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