Dealing with the over-mighty – by Brian Binley MP

portrait-brianbinley-2Every now and again the British people have to deal with the over-mighty in our society. 

You could say the process began at Runnymede and reached its culmination with the defeat of the Royalists and the emergence of a strong Parliament.  Thus was the power of the Sovereign curtailed.

Gradually, the large landowners followed suit and were brought into line as were the new manufacturing elite.  Thereafter, the Trade Unions were firmly put in their place.

In other words, the British have learnt that one section of society can’t be allowed to gain a degree of prominence which damages the very essence of society itself.

The tipping point comes when the powerful act without responsibility and I wonder whether our national press has now achieved that doubtful pre-eminence.   

It goes without saying that a free press is a vital partner in the democratic process.  Parliamentary democracy and a free press are two sides of the same coin but both have to act responsibly if democracy is to function efficiently.  Yet I find it ironic that many of our national newspapers who consistently vilified MPs for their failures have failed to consider their own lack of professionalism when so doing.

Is it time that they thought about the issue themselves and put their own house in order.  Surely free speech needs to be dealt with more responsibility than we have seen of late.  Surely the answer lies in self regulation not parliamentary regulation.

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