Sunday, February 24, 2008

Poll: Who Would YOU Like to be the Next Speaker?

Take part in the Speaker Poll HERE. Vote on whether you think Michael Martin has done a good job, who you'd like to see succeed him, and for your best Speaker of the last thirty years. The results will be posted a bit later in the week, once at least 1,500 of you have voted!

50 comments:

Anonymous said...

me.

why waste it on a pol?

tachybaptus said...

'At leased'? That's not a spelling error or a typo, that's a parapraxis. House trouble? Problem with the giant Audi? If so, sorry to hear.

Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

1. Worst Speaker ever
2. Speaker William Lenthall
3. John Enoch Powell or perhaps even
Norman St John-Stevas

Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

...Except is a Catholic allowed to be Speaker?
These days only Norman himself is expert enough on the English constitution and I suspect that he would keep stum just to get the job...

Ross said...

"Except is a Catholic allowed to be Speaker?"

Isn't Martin a catholic? My apologies to all catholics if this is wrong.

Stormin' Norman said...

“The [British Constitution]is so complicated, only three men have ever understood it. One was Prince Albert, who is dead. The second was a German professor who became mad. I am the third and I have forgotten all about it.”

Apologies to Lord Palmerston

nigella dumpster said...

Sorry to see you leaping onto this decrepit bandwagon. Ever since the present speaker was appointed there's been a nasty little campaign against him led by a bunch of bored hacks in the press gallery. Being mostly odious oiks themselves, these embittered under-achievers have become the worst sort of Hyacinth Bucket style snobs...

Anonymous said...

Iain, Iain, Iain,

It is blatantly obvious who should be speaker and who would bring articulate and succinct language to the job as well as providing a glamorous wife for the media types whi its:

John Prescott of course.

Anonymous said...

"Order, Order. Mr Bufton Tufton, Lymesewold West."

Thank you M'Lud Speaker. I must say I find this discussion both odious and execrable. Surely, if a senior and learned Gentleman of the Haise seeks to appoint himself a small emolument of let us say, hrmmph, a million guinneas a year, then there can be no objection to the matter. (Sounds of "rear rear" from the assembled members.) I say this to the Hause - it's a sticky wicket M'Luds when we are confronted by the spectacle of the common heard challenging such a thing. It is quite appalling that in this day and age a member cannot in good faith acquire very substantial amounts of cash and spend his time investigating constituency matters in Barbados with his paid private secretary, er, friend, Ms Karlita Bonk. Thank you M'friends, I commend this matter to the Hause. (Ere, Ere.)

Speaker: Mr Clegg.

Clegg: Can I just say Mr Speaker (house empties).

Glyn H said...

George Thomas managed to be fair with a touch of humour and seemed to have clear, if lilting, ennunciation. I vote for him. What is wrong with Sir Alan Hazelhurst who has quietly got on with the job of trying to maintain the dignity of the office defiled by Labour with the apppoinment of one so partisan and so lacking in competance nor understanding of his job.

Anonymous said...

I don't know. Iain - are you promoting the movie "Bob Roberts" because you think it's a nice conservative film? Just in case you didn't realise, it's actually a satire against the swinish, conniving and utterly amoral attitudes of US Republicans. Got it? Eerily echoed in real life today by the "candidate" Mike Huckabee.

Anonymous said...

Technical point . Does the Speaker have to be an MP ?
I know it is always assumed that this is the case but is it ?

If so does it still need to be ?

Ed said...

I love the way that the class warriors are saying that it is class warriors who are out to get Mr Speaker. The simple fact is that it has nothing to do with class and everything to do with ability.

Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

Ross said...

"Isn't Martin a catholic? My apologies to all catholics if this is wrong"

Yes, I believe that he may be. However, I also believe that the English Constitution was suspended in 1997 by Tone and his sofa. All things that happened in those unconstitutional 10 years can be ignored in the cases of precedence that they may have set.

Its time to dig up Tone's sofa and hang it in public. The cushions should be left hanging at traitors gate.

Albert M. Bankment said...

In my view, it really should be Sir George Young. He's widely respected, unflappable, understands the way it all works and really should have been elected last time around - if Labour hadn't reneged on the established principle of alternating Speakers between the two main parties.

Dammit, with the hyooge Parliamentary majority they had at the time they could have been gracious about it. Nevertheless, being the contemptible chisellers they are, they couldn't miss an opportunity to load the dice. It's just habit, really, innit!

Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

By the way, all the corespondents here and elsewhere suggesting that attacks on speaker Mick are down to snobism. This is bollocks.

Its the way that Tone chose the speaker 6 years ago, ignoring all convention to put him in place. The (pre-Iraq) nu-labour MP's ignored the meaning of this Great Office and did the executive's bidding.

Shame on them for doing this and guess what? the executive chose a not very good man for the job.

Anonymous said...

Could an English person hold a job in this government?

Unsworth said...

@ Ross

""Except is a Catholic allowed to be Speaker?"

Isn't Martin a catholic? My apologies to all catholics if this is wrong."


That is debatable.

David Boothroyd said...

How many times does it have to be said: there is no such convention that the Speakership should alternate between parties, and there never was? It's a pure coincidence that the Speakership happened to alternate in the last 30 years, but it never did before that.

There is a much greater convention that the Speaker is a Government backbencher - only one exception in the last century and a half.

Geoffrey G Brooking said...

Yeah lets give it to John Prescott.

Would be a laugh a minute!

dynamite said...

Sir George Young.

Ed said...

I'm not bothered about which party the Speaker is selected from, but I am interested in the person selected being impartial and competent once selected.

curly15 said...

Isn't it all a bit academic Iain?

I really don't think "Gorbals Mick" is going to be dragged out of the Chair in the near future, at least not whilst there is a great risk of more transparency over expenses! Haven't MPs got too much to lose?

For what it's worth I think George Thomas was the most respected Speaker over the last thirty years, and that Sir George Young would be an excellent choice after the next election.

JP said...

I think the take-home message from all of this is:

Nobody in Parliament, in the Civil Service, in the broad arms of the unelected State could give a shit what the People want from the Speaker, the Parliament or anything else.

So that's the answer.

verity said...

Nigella Dumpster, thank you for every boring, predictable, snide word and for your pedestrian thinking, too! I do think originality of thought or expression wrecks a good message, don't you?

Have you ever thought of developing a career as a soporific?

Anonymous said...

give it to david boothroyd - he is as juvenile as the present incumbent!

Albert M. Bankment said...

Dear David Boothroyd @ 11.10

Well, they've been alternating since 1965, which is long enough for a pattern to establish itself. As I said, the Labour majority in 2001 was so immense that there was no reason [apart from a we-are-the-champions, 1000-year-reich, government-for a-generation triumphalism] for them to insist upon their own man; especially since the Speaker is supposed to be 'above party politics'.

Had the Labour candidate at the time been an immensely qualified parliamentarian, respected for his command of procedure, there would be little objection to a rejection of the modern convention. Michael Martin was, however, derided from the outset as being a hopeless, time-serving Labour carthorse. This was not out of snobbery, however, but out of disbelief at his utter and obvious inadequacy for the role. He has, ever since, confirmed the validity of that early judgement by his reliance upon the Clerks in m atters of procedure, his hapless performance in the chair, his partialism, his vindictiveness, his impenetrable delivery, his chippiness, his inability to get along with his staff, his thin-skinned retaliations to criticism and [when all else fails] his laughable dismissal of all adverse commentary as being fuelled by nothing but southern snobbery.

It is only relatively recently that his cavalier and lavish approach to expenses has given rise to a more soundly-based and quantifiable rejection of [what I suppose we much laughingly refer to as] his suitability for the job.

Oscar Miller said...

So now we know - Michael Martin is "very very good". The Great Leader has spoken. Phew - what an intellect that man has. Up there with Rowan Williams I'd say.

sockpuppet said...

It's funny that when one of the peons wants to have a pop at a toff, then just the fact that they are a toff will do, be they never so charming, decent, or even - as has happened - left-wing. Whereas if someone with received pronunciation should ever point out that a graceless, rude, incompetent, spiteful, and probably corrupt individual who is also working class is all of the above, then it is 'snobbery.'

One might almost think they felt inferior to their betters.

Yak40 said...

Someone English would be a novelty.

Philipa said...

No I think he was a rubbish and prejudiced speaker, Betty was better.

Restore the House of Lords and get rid of all cronies and quangos and if this takes you to the end of May then Ken Livingstone might be looking for a job..

Anonymous said...

verity said...
"Have you ever thought of developing a career as a soporific?"

Have you ever thought of making a comment that people might want to read?

When I see your name at the head of a comment I immediately move on to the next one. I suspect that most other readers do the same.

Anonymous said...

I've just heard on the news that the Speaker was cheered to the rafters by MP's today. What better illustration of a corrupt, inept, ignorant, out of touch Parliament could you want? To the gallows with the lot of them I say.

Anonymous said...

[verity] "Nigella Dumpster, thank you for every boring, predictable, snide word and for your pedestrian thinking, too!"

Oh, the irony, the irony...

Still, 'it takes one to know one'..

Trumpeter Lanfried said...

anonymous [3.06] I agree. This news made me despair. Did Cameron join in the cheers?

Anonymous said...

Nigella Dumpster is quite right.
It was that 'working class lad done good' Quenten (of the Mail) Letts who labelled Martin 'Gorbals Mick' virtually from day one of his accepting the post of Speaker.
It's such a delicious irony that someone from the Speaker's department accidentally 'mis-informed' a Mail journalist, as opposed to Mail journalists accidentally 'mis-informing' the public.

verity said...

3:06 - Agreed. Nauseating.

Anonymous said...

After the bias shown my Mr Martin I think that it would be fairer in general to have the speaker from one of the oposition parties.

I would be tempted to say it should be somebody from one of the smaller parties but thay would not always have a suitable and willing candidate.

verity said...

Ha ha, Trumpeter! He probably commanded the Opposition benches to give him a standing ovation.

Anonymous said...

Stormin' Norman said...
“The [British Constitution]is so complicated, only three men have ever understood it. One was Prince Albert, who is dead. The second was a German professor who became mad. I am the third and I have forgotten all about it.”

Apologies to Lord Palmerston

You should apologise even more to Lord Palmerston as he was not talking about the British Constitution, but the Schleswig-Holstein question. If you look at the characters mentioned, there is something of a clue...

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 9.25

Yes, the Speaker does have to be an MP.

There have been discussions about whether when elected the Speaker should sit for a notional constituency, but proposals along these lines have come to nothing.

Anonymous said...

Stormin' Norman said...
“The [British Constitution]is so complicated, only three men have ever understood it. One was Prince Albert, who is dead. The second was a German professor who became mad. I am the third and I have forgotten all about it.”

Apologies to Lord Palmerston

You should apologise even more to Lord Palmerston as he was not talking about the British Constitution, but the Schleswig-Holstein question. If you look at the characters mentioned, there is something of a clue...

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 6.19 pm.

Your comment is a waste of space. Stormin' Norman is obviously fully aware of the context of the quotation. That is why he put "British Constitution" in square brackets.

Ol said...

I think it sends a bad constitutional message if the gets forced Speaker out, even if I personally think he's a plank compared to the competition.

It also gives the media even more to gloat about - bear in mind its only a small percentage of the UK population that even A) knows MM is under pressure B) cares about it. Even if MM made dubious expense claims, any reforms would hopefully make this a future impossibility.

If I could pick someone today for the job, and if that person could be a Conservative, I'd give it to Baroness Warsi. It would send a great message of inclusiveness in such a visual Parliamentary role, and more importantly she'd do a great job.

PSJ said...

"who you'd like to see succeed him"

Gordon Brown. He'd find a way to mess up this job too but anything's better than him as Prime Minister.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 6.19

What? Stormin' Norman attributed a quote to Palmerston that had nothing to do with the British Constitution. Putting it in brackets is irrelevant: it imparted a sense that was never meant. What, exactly, was the point of the Stormin' Norman's contribution?

Anonymous said...

Anon 9.44 pm.
"Putting it in brackets is irrelevant: it imparted a sense that was never meant. What, exactly, was the point of the Stormin' Norman's contribution?"

You just don't get it do you?

Anonymous said...

David Blunkett he would bring some vision tothe role and he could get his dog to bark to get order woof!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 11.27

No, I don't get it. Please explain....

Rylanddoyle said...

greetings

just want to post a comment on the idea that the speaker alternates between the two main parties -

between 1906 and 1965 there were 6 successive tory speakers, and if you look back to the 19th century there were longer periods of tory hegemony in the job.

i think buggins turn only applies for most people because it is something to bash ,artin/nulab with.

cheers