National Left - Wales needs a progressive left future.
Thursday, 28 May 2015
SNP clapping in HOC signifies a desire to break arcane traditions.
There maybe more to the story that Scottish National Party MPs have been told to stop clapping in the House of Commons by Speaker John Bercow.
The MPs clapped on at least three separate occasions during the response by their leader at Westminster, Angus Robertson.
Mr Bercow told the MPs to "show some respect" for the traditions of parliament.
He intervened after Mr Robertson criticised Labour's supposed support for austerity.
Seeing that during their induction the SNP were already told that the convention (not the rules mind) is that MPs pbey the arcane method os shouting Hear Hear this looks like a deleberate statement that the SNP are not going to be bound by arcane traditions.
The new intake of MPs erupted on at least three separate occasions when SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson's responded to the Queen's Speech.
However because of "Tradition", MPs are only allowed to speak in the Commons when they have made their maiden speeches, meaning most of the SNP cannot currently make their voices heard.
It could be weeks even months before the tedious boring "Tradition" of making a maiden speech there is a convention that maiden speeches should be relatively uncontroversial, often consisting of a general statement of the politician's beliefs and background rather than a partisan comment on a current topic
Frustrating for a new MP who wants to take part in debates from the start
These "Traditions" have nothing to do with respect they are about binding MPs into the Public School Oxbridge world in Westminster.
The idea is once a MP gets embroiled in these "Traditions" n the House of Commons, Members of Parliament refer to members as "the honourable member for ... (constituency)" but as "the right honourable member for ..." if they are Privy Councillors but now hold no ministry. To save recalling places in direct replies, the use of "the honourable lady/gentleman, or the Minister (often, fordepartment)/Chancellor/Prime Minister" is available to refer to members not in their own party (or coalition) where the person referred to has spoken. Similarly, those in their own party are referred to as "my (right) honourable friend", right depending on if they are Privy Councillors. Other honorifics used in addition for those members in relevant professions ("honourable and reverend", "honourable and gallant"( If they are former army officers" and "honourable and learned") are now rare in the Commons.
Why can't they call each other by name as the Assembly or Scottish Parliament does?
But the whole system is made to make MP think they are part of a special elite seduced by the Pomp of the Queens Speech.and the other "Traditions"
And one of these Traditions that even if you a committed Republican you can not openly criticise the Royal Family in what is supposed be the main democratic legislature in these islands.
Hopefully the SNP clapping was a gesture that they are no going to be seduced into playing Westminster game and that these arcane "Traditions" have no place in a modern democracy.