Here is a hat…or..to be more accurate…half a hat: It is carefully crafted by me, now an ‘expert certified pundit milliner’, to allow the pundit, anti-European specialist, Tory led Coalitionist etc etc etc…. to talk about prisoner votes and any other decision we don’t like from the European Court of Human Rights through the top of his or her head and be sure in the knowledge that his or her views will get out there onto the meedja and twittersphere…while keeping at least half of his/her head vaguely dry so they can come up with even more nonsense on the corrosive effect of the unelected European judges (and, indeed, our own judges) on the sovereignty and workings of our increasingly rather intolerant and unpleasing nation.
There's also a link to a more measured, but likewise more depressing piece from Obiter J, which points out the things Parliament has passed despite being signed up to the ECHR and having the Human Rights Act in force:
- Introduced internment without trial for non-citizens suspected of terrorist links - (later replaced by control orders);
- repeatedly attempted to remove trial by jury - (attempts have usually failed only thanks to the House of Lords);
- introduced retrial of those acquitted of certain serious offences, thus eroding the double jeopardy principle;
- attacked the independence of the judiciary;
- placed serious limits on access to justice through cuts to legal aid - (with even more to come);
- streamlined extradition processes so that British citizens can be removed without insufficient protections.
In what possible horrible Policy Exchange fantasy world is this panoply of illiberality evidence not of an overmighty state but of the shackles imposed by do-gooder lawyers and activist judges? What are the bastards planning?