Data retention question

Brian Gladman brg at
Thu Jul 17 18:06:44 BST 2014

On 17/07/2014 16:54, Roland Perry wrote:
> In article <20140717134535.00007f8f at>, Brian
> Morrison <bdm at> writes
>> The only way to change this is for everyone to vote for independent
>> candidates who are a) not controlled by a party and b) able to get
>> enough help to campaign for election from people who are not party
>> workers.
>> Sadly I don't see it happening any time soon unless people start to
>> actually care about what their MP does and how they vote on various
>> issues.
> But what do you do if your chosen independent candidate is 100% on side
> over data retention, but 100% off-side on things like immigration,
> education, transport, broadband rollout, taxation and pensions?

They will enter an election in which, at least in principle, their
constituents will select them based on the policies that they advocate.
 Once elected they then vote on issues as best they can as a
representative of their constituents.  If they deviate completely from
their announced policies, they don't get elected next time (or maybe get

Of course this won't work well in a modern world since it would mean
that we had no real policy direction overall.  But the Party system has
completely undermined representative democracy to the point where a
large proprtion of the population is now completely disinterested in
what Parliament does.

Rather than going completely along the independent line, I would prefer
to weaken the Party system by restricting whipping to a small number of
key issues such as confidence votes, finance bills etc., thereby leaving
a much greater proportion of what Parliament does open to free votes.

We are supposed to live in a representative democracy but few if any now
feel that they are represented in what Parliament does.

Judging the balance between security and privacy would be a much more
worthwhile exercise if MPs really had to think about it rather than
being led blindfold through the lobbies.

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