Clive Aslet: Appointment by lot for the House of Lords

Clive Aslet writes in the Mail Online:

[E]ven the Conservatives back a largely elected chamber. They have to; democracy is the only show in town. But leaving aside the constitutional impasse that would ensue once an elected upper house started to throw its weight around, who would really want it? Our elected politicians are not exactly revered. In fact they’re reviled. The last thing we need is more of them. We need a different type of animal in the Lords – experts, great legal brains — but not appointees of the prime minister, thank you very much. It’s a conundrum. Everyone who thinks about it comes up with a different answer.

If David Cameron really believed in the Big Society, he would advocate true democratic involvement: appointment by lot. It could work like the jury system. Ordinary people serve a term as scrutineers of parliamentary legislation. You could be sure they would bring a lot more practical experience to the table than their oppos in the Commons.

Otherwise the only way forward I can see is for the Lords to revert to their origins. There are far too many Lords for the chamber to accommodate; let them fight it out.

One Response

  1. […] Chouard (and here, here, and here), Lawrence Lessig, David Chaum, Jacques Rancière, Clive Aslet, Jim Gilliam, Loïc Blondiaux, and Andrew Dobson and other readers of the […]


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