Thursday, 11 October 2012

I was beautiful then....

A helpful random person sent me an email out of the blue yesterday, pointing out that a link on a post of mine from my old site, written in 2004, had a broken link to the US constitution, and suggesting an alternative.  Given that the link he suggested was on an Identity Theft website, and because it's a 8 year old post and not a terribly important link in the context of the post, I haven't bothered to change it (remember when blog posts were full of links to other things?).  What I did do, though, was stop for a moment and read my post.

Have you ever done that thing where you stumble across a dissertation or something that you wrote when you were at University?  It looks so polished and alien that, although you know full well that you did write it, you can't believe that you actually did.

Yeah.  That.

Check me out:

"In the British Constitution, instead of the three branches of government being separate (legislature, executive and the judiciary), in Britain they are concentrated in Parliament. Parliament is sovereign and cannot be limited (in the way that, say, the US Congress can be limited by the Supreme Court). That's not the biggest difference though. Unlike the American Constitution, the British Constitution has never been written down. You cannot take it out of a library and have a look at it. In fact, you pretty much have to be a constitutional expert to have any real idea of what it is. This makes it an inherently flexible system, although its critics would say that never writing it down means that the citizens have no real idea what their rights are or when they are being violated".

Amazing right? It gets better:

"The roots of our parliamentary democracy can be traced all the way back into the middle ages and beyond. It has traditionally been believed that the primacy of parliament began when a succession of kings in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries were deposed "by the authority of Parliament" ( a phrase actually used in the confirmation of the claim of Henry IV to the throne).... This view of the "Lancastrian constitutional experiment" is dented somewhat by the fact that Edward IV seized the throne from Henry VI in the traditional way - by battle - and Parliament had nothing to do with it. There is however a substantial body of evidence to suggest that people in the middle ages had a real sense of their historical past and a notion of constitution. This awareness only increased with the advent of the printing press, and is reflected in the popularity of the theories of kingship and law found in "mirrors of princes" manuals (like 'De Regime Principum' by Giles of Rome that had been translated into 10 languages by the end of the fourteenth century). This popularity shows that, amongst the political nation represented at parliament at least (we're not talking about the Monty Python peasant here), there was a notion of a consitution dealing with law, justice and property. Edward II, Richard II and Henry VI - the 3 deposed kings - aroused the anger of the political nation by breaching this notion of constitution to such an extent that parliament acquiesced to their deposition. It is this notion of constitution that still underpins the authority of the British Parliament today. It is the bedrock of the constitution".

Nowadays it's all whining about my job, exercise and half-arsed attempts at fiction.  When did I stop writing boring, barely-relavant stuff about medieval concepts of kingship?

They really don't make blogs like they used to.  Even when they're written by the same bloggers.  Twelve comments too.  What happened to comments?


  1. Nice, dan. Nice. Well played.

  2. i hear you about the comments! also when look back at even daft bits of writing on my old music blog, i wonder how i found the time to be SO passionate about what is, essentially, (BBC Radio continuity anouncer voice) "just a bit of fun".

  3. The move to the more instantaneous world of Twitter and FB etc has reduced lengthy discourse - in theory the blog still allows that, but over time, like anything, purposes and audiences change. Blogging has long since been a means of communication about what's on the writer's mind - there are different things on your mind now, and different avenues to communicate through.

    Well written post though. :)