The Rights Stuff

John Griffith


As part of its search for new and popular policies, the Labour leadership is proposing constitutional changes. Before the general election, there was conflict over the desirability of adopting a Bill of Rights and, in the event, the manifesto merely listed a number of specific reforms including a freedom of information statute and control over the security services. More recently a much wider and more comprehensive set of proposals has been advocated. Changes in the system of government look attractive, especially after the experience of the 1980s. But the dangers are very great. The consequences of what is now proposed are, as I shall seek to show, likely to result in the serious weakening of centralised power (essential to a Labour Government) and the considerable strengthening of private interests.

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