Thursday, 26 August 2010


As Fraser Nelson reveals in the Spectator one of the first of Labour's landmines, laid before the election, is primed to go off:

"Has Mark Hoban just become the first victim of the New Labour landmines? He was asked on the Today Programme whether the Treasury had conducted a formal study assessing the impact of the cuts on ethnic minorities. Hoban was speechless - as well you might be. But the assessment, he was told, is required under Harriet Harman's Equalities Act. Has it been carried out? He avoided the question and was asked it again. And so it continued, a la Paxman v Howard.

When Labour retreated, it sewed several landmines in the political territory it was about to cede. One of them was Harman's Equalities Act, which - as Pete blogged a while ago - mandates government "to consider how decisions might help to reduce inequalities associated with socio-economic disadvantage".

Of course if Cameron had any kind of backbone he would have abolished most of these acts the moment he came to office, but didn't - obviously too worried that repealing an 'Equality Act would've undermine the new 'cuddly' Tory image.

Fraser makes another salient point in this rather revealing passage:
In this way, Labour transferred power from parliament (where it was about to lose power) to the courts (where the lefty judiciary reign supreme). Their calculation was that if they did this quietly enough, and in technicalities, the Cameroons would not wise up to it because of their aversion to detail. Cameron should have repealed the Equalities Act instantly.
Aversion to detail? Great! That is going to be so helpful when they start dealing with the complexities of the EU.

The Mail reports today that a challenge to the budget may be about to start:

The Coalition is facing legal action against its Budget from an equality watchdog after analysts found it hammered the poor.

The Equalities and Human Rights Commission said it was considering whether to take the Treasury to court.

The quango said it feared Chancellor George Osborne had not investigated the impact of his Budget on vulnerable groups – such as women, the elderly, the disabled and ethnic minorities – as legally required.

The Treasury is also facing legal action from women’s rights group the Fawcett Society, which says ministers took no account of the Budget's effect on women.

Unelected Quangos are now gearing up to challenge the sovereignty of Parliament in the courts. Tom Harris is still bleating (in some ways understandably) about the inefficiencies of the IPSA, but in truth he and all the others might as well stick a great big sign outside the House of Commons saying: "Closed, until further notice".

No comments:

Post a Comment