Michael Martin: a triumph of stupidity over experience

March 19, 2010 11:41 AM

Ex-Commons Speaker Michael Martin is no stranger to TPA criticism or public outrage. To be fair, that is largely because he is no stranger to doing extremely foolish or craven things that harm the rest of us.

It is of course an absolute travesty that this man whose arrogance and stubbornness did so much harm to the standing of the House of Commons and British democracy should now sit, resplendent in ermine, in the House of Lords.

I had rather hoped that having been the focus of the population's ire he might now decide to keep his head down and enjoy his taxpayer-funded dotage. However, the old bull has thundered into the ring again.

This time he has tabled a "motion of regret" in order to derail the laudable plans going through Parliament to reduce the punitive lawyers' fees used by libel claimants to suppress free speech and the free press.

Congratulations, Michael Martin, you've done it again. As if you hadn't already handed taxpayers a big enough bill for your lawyers' fees fighting against expenses transparency, now you've put the boot in on the public once more.

This motion may well delay the proposals until the election has been called, which means that one man is going to sink this move to protect free speech, despite the overwhelming public, media and Parliamentary support for it.

Yet again Michael Martin has snubbed the people - it seems that he has worked out that this is what he is best at.

Ex-Commons Speaker Michael Martin is no stranger to TPA criticism or public outrage. To be fair, that is largely because he is no stranger to doing extremely foolish or craven things that harm the rest of us.

It is of course an absolute travesty that this man whose arrogance and stubbornness did so much harm to the standing of the House of Commons and British democracy should now sit, resplendent in ermine, in the House of Lords.

I had rather hoped that having been the focus of the population's ire he might now decide to keep his head down and enjoy his taxpayer-funded dotage. However, the old bull has thundered into the ring again.

This time he has tabled a "motion of regret" in order to derail the laudable plans going through Parliament to reduce the punitive lawyers' fees used by libel claimants to suppress free speech and the free press.

Congratulations, Michael Martin, you've done it again. As if you hadn't already handed taxpayers a big enough bill for your lawyers' fees fighting against expenses transparency, now you've put the boot in on the public once more.

This motion may well delay the proposals until the election has been called, which means that one man is going to sink this move to protect free speech, despite the overwhelming public, media and Parliamentary support for it.

Yet again Michael Martin has snubbed the people - it seems that he has worked out that this is what he is best at.

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