Daily View 2×2: 10 June 2009

2 big stories

This is, I think, the first time I have compiled the Daily View (Wednesdays being Mortimer days) when the headlines in every paper haven’t been dominated by expenses. Hooray, real news!

The big news at Westminster is that Gordon Brown is doing his usual thing of arriving at a political moment (in this case electoral reform) several weeks late and trailing faux consultation in his wake.

From the BBC:

BBC political editor Nick Robinson said the prime minister’s statement will not endorse a change of voting system nor any particular system but it will call for a debate on whether the electoral system should be changed and which new system could be adopted. It will not set out a timetable for any change.

Our correspondent said Mr Brown chaired a meeting of the new Democratic Renewal Council – a group of ministers – which agreed to consider moving towards the so-called alternative vote or AV system in which voters could list their preferences rather than simply voting for one candidate as now.

So he’s not endorsing anything and he’s calling for an open debate but he’s already chaired a private meeting of Labour ministers on introducing AV. Anyone else confused?

Elsewhere in heavy-handedness news, six Met officers have been accused of using water-boarding techniques in the course of a drug investigation.

The Times has more:

The Independent Police Complaints Commission is examining the conduct of six officers connected to drug raids in November in which four men and a woman were arrested at addresses in Enfield and Tottenham. Police said they found a large amount of cannabis and the suspects were charged with importation of a Class C drug. The case was abandoned four months later when the Crown Prosecution Service said it would not have been in the public interest to proceed. It is understood that the trial, by revealing the torture claims, would have compromised the criminal investigation into the six officers.

Truly stranger than fiction – even Jimmy McNulty never tried this on.

2 must-read blog posts

I’m in a slightly awkward mood today, so here are a couple of other counter-cyclical cusses. James Graham reckons we’re molly-coddling BNP voters:

Last night, the Tories, Lib Dems and Labour were queueing up to come up with excuses for why so many people voted BNP. It was a protest vote, they said, not a racist one. We need to listen more and learn to respond.


And Antony Hook thinks there are good reasons to make do with supporting AV – for now:

It is like the early Reformation, the premise of which was the them revolutionary idea that there is an alternative to Roman Catholicism, which was the historically necessary pre-condition to the reality of later Reformation idea that there are many alternative to Roman Catholicism.

And finally…

Get well soon, Vince! We need you, dammit! (h/t Jonathan Calder)

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One Comment

  • I am with Anthony on this one. Its a start and if it is seriously up for discussion we must support it.
    We have a short window of opportunity while the public think things need to change – and while Labour still has the power and will to make it happen.
    Tories will push reform into the long grass.

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