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UK getting out of human rights - the world celebrates watch

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    It is now government policy to abandon the postwar consensus on human rights in Europe, which Britain was largely responsible for creating. If the Tories are re-elected, this will be a key policy.
    http://www.theguardian.com/politics/...rights-rulings

    There are many negative aspects to this (Chris Grayling's proposals were just rubbished by Dominic Grieve, former Tory Attorney General, who says the document contains many outright lies about how European Human Rights operates), but I thought it was worth a pause to consider who will be offering the Tories congratulations from around the world when this gets done and the news goes global.

    China
    North Korea
    Islamic State
    Burma
    Venezuela
    Cuba
    Zimbabwe

    EDIT I removed Russia - they are in the convention, however sloppily implemented in reality. I'm sure Putin will be sending personal congratulations to Cameron though for this bold move. After all, human rights are nasty foreign things and not very British. We prefer simple rules like 'get orf my land' and 'shoot first, ask questions later'.
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    Even Russia is a member to the European Convention on Human Rights, actually.
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    It's ridiculous really to think our country is apparently so against improvements to human rights.
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    I'd love to comment but fear any criticism of this proposal may get me branded a non violent extremist.
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    So the papers are turning this into outrage and sensationalism, by implying that Britain will spiral into human rights abuses comparable to the worst in North Korea, Burma etc. Judging by some of the responses, people are falling for this ploy.

    I see this as quite sensible in bringing in some checks and balances and sovereign control over the types of laws passed by Strasbourg. The principles of Human Rights are sound and just, however the blanket implementation without regard to the negative problems they cause at a local level is the issue.

    This is aimed at bringing clarity and protecting human rights for the majority, but also allowing our judiciary to curb the ability to evade justice and harm caused to others and society by people like Abu Qatada, Anjem Choudhary, etc.or the dissonance caused by allowing paedophiles, murderers and rapists the right to suffrage in prison - the very people who disregard human rights and sometimes succeed in making a mockery of our legal system.

    Taking account of Strasbourg rulings, the system needs to balance the rights of a few individuals against the rights of the great majority. I am sure that Strasbourg pass laws in the interests of the great majority at the global and pan-European level. However, some of the laws have a great negative impact at a far more localised level and are exploited by a few at the expense of the rights and safety of the majority.

    The Grayling paper sets out the framework for our judiciary to review the Strasbourg rulings and then treat them as adopted or as advisory when deciding how the laws should be interpreted within UK law. Nothing more.

    This is entirely different to the sensationalist headlines that we will somehow bring back slavery, kangaroo courts, torture and crushing dissenters mercilessly.
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    (Original post by n00)
    I'd love to comment but fear any criticism of this proposal may get me branded a non violent extremist.
    You are an extremely dangerous tolerationist of the EU and to make matters worse, you aren't horribly confused and deluded by the Daily Mail. Therefore you should be branded as a 'moderate' and 'sensible intelligent person', two of the worst possible insults in Tory circles.
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    (Original post by uberteknik)
    crushing dissenters
    The plans are already in place aren't they?
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-29414574
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    (Original post by uberteknik)
    So the papers are turning this into outrage and sensationalism, by implying that Britain will spiral into human rights abuses comparable to the worst in North Korea, Burma etc. Judging by some of the responses, people are falling for this ploy.

    I see this as quite sensible in bringing in some checks and balances and sovereign control over the types of laws passed by Strasbourg. The principles of Human Rights are sound and just, however the blanket implementation without regard to the negative problems they cause at a local level is the issue.

    This is aimed at bringing clarity and protecting human rights for the majority, but also allowing our judiciary to curb the ability to evade justice and harm caused to others and society by people like Abu Qatada, Anjem Choudhary, etc.or the dissonance caused by allowing paedophiles, murderers and rapists the right to suffrage in prison - the very people who exploit human rights and sometimes succeed in making a mockery of our legal system.

    Taking account of Strasbourg rulings, the system needs to balance the rights of a few individuals against the rights of the great majority. I am sure that Strasbourg pass laws in the interests of the great majority at the global and pan-European level. However, some of the laws have a great negative impact at a far more localised level and are exploited by a few at the expense of the rights and safety of the majority.

    The Grayling paper sets out the framework for our judiciary to review the Strasbourg rulings and then treat them as adopted or as advisory when deciding how the laws should be interpreted within UK law. Nothing more.

    This is entirely different to the sensationalist headlines that we will somehow bring back slavery, kangaroo courts, torture and crushing dissenters mercilessly.
    It's to do with the message it sends. People around the world won't generally catch the nuances about specific prisoner rights, they will just hear that the UK is withdrawing from the most important human rights agenda in the world. Depressing stuff.

    Anyway, that point about prisoner voting rights is just a piece of issue capturing justification by the right wing media. What this is really about is that Teresa May and several previous Home Secretaries got frustrated about the legal blockages to expelling Abu Qatada (and one or two similar cases), yet nearly all of that was upheld by the UK Supreme Court and had little to do except peripherally with the European Court.

    This is a total example of dishonest and pathetically disinterested Ministers/politicians cringing to the Daily Mail rag and its cynical, secretive agendas.
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    (Original post by uberteknik)
    So the papers are turning this into outrage and sensationalism, by implying that Britain will spiral into human rights abuses comparable to the worst in North Korea, Burma etc. Judging by some of the responses, people are falling for this ploy.
    No surprises there, since the ECHR supports press freedom, whereas the Tory government does not.

    (Original post by uberteknik)
    I see this as quite sensible in bringing in some checks and balances and sovereign control over the types of laws passed by Strasbourg. The principles of Human Rights are sound and just, however the blanket implementation without regard to the negative problems they cause at a local level is the issue.

    This is aimed at bringing clarity and protecting human rights for the majority, but also allowing our judiciary to curb the ability to evade justice and harm caused to others and society by people like Abu Qatada, Anjem Choudhary, etc.or the dissonance caused by allowing paedophiles, murderers and rapists the right to suffrage in prison - the very people who exploit human rights and sometimes succeed in making a mockery of our legal system.
    Human rights need to apply to everyone or to no-one. It's better for the law to be abused by people than the other way around, I think.

    (Original post by uberteknik)
    Taking account of Strasbourg rulings, the system needs to balance the rights of a few individuals against the rights of the great majority. I am sure that Strasbourg pass laws in the interests of the great majority at the global and pan-European level. However, some of the laws have a great negative impact at a far more localised level and are exploited by a few at the expense of the rights and safety of the majority.
    And what's to stop a British human rights law doing exactly the same thing? Every system will have its faults.

    (Original post by uberteknik)
    The Grayling paper sets out the framework for our judiciary to review the Strasbourg rulings and then treat them as adopted or as advisory when deciding how the laws should be interpreted within UK law. Nothing more.
    Or rather, it means the UK government can cherry-pick which individuals or groups can be protected by human rights based on their current agenda. And it will inevitably lead to more rights of British citizens being eroded under "anti-terrorism" laws and other such smoke-and-mirror legislation.
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    I bet £100 this thread will turn into a Moosalem bashing thread.


    I'm also more conscious of being sarcastic now. I'm gonna include this disclaimer on each post for idiots:
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    It's to do with the message it sends. People around the world won't generally catch the nuances about specific prisoner rights, they will just hear that the UK is withdrawing from the most important human rights agenda in the world. Depressing stuff.

    Anyway, that point about prisoner voting rights is just a piece of issue capturing justification by the right wing media. What this is really about is that Teresa May and several previous Home Secretaries got frustrated about the legal blockages to expelling Abu Qatada (and one or two similar cases), yet nearly all of that was upheld by the UK Supreme Court and had little to do except peripherally with the European Court.

    This is a total example of dishonest and pathetically disinterested Ministers/politicians cringing to the Daily Mail rag and its cynical, secretive agendas.
    I'm not disagreeing with you - it is most definitely aimed at the right-wing/UKIP voter.

    Lets not forget, this is not a white paper setting out law reforms, it is just a proposal. But announced at the Tory Party Conference, it's also a starting position for negotiating/modifying the terms for UK membership of the EU.

    The devil will be in the detail which probably means the Home Secretary and the PM will attempt to gain the power of final ruling on contentious cases. If a successor version is actually implemented, I hope in reality, it will be the Supreme Court that decides without needing further escalation to the European Courts - in exceptional circumstances only.
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    (Original post by uberteknik)
    I see this as quite sensible in bringing in some checks and balances and sovereign control over the types of laws passed by Strasbourg. The principles of Human Rights are sound and just, however the blanket implementation without regard to the negative problems they cause at a local level is the issue.
    The ECtHR's doctrine of the margin of appreciation, clearly allows for the state to implement rights in whichever way it deems to be easiest and most acceptable for its population and concerns. There is no set blanket implementation that the ECHR supports.

    This is aimed at bringing clarity and protecting human rights for the majority, but also allowing our judiciary to curb the ability to evade justice and harm caused to others and society by people like Abu Qatada, Anjem Choudhary, etc.or the dissonance caused by allowing paedophiles, murderers and rapists the right to suffrage in prison - the very people who exploit human rights and sometimes succeed in making a mockery of our legal system.
    Decisions regarding the treatment of foreign nationals within British soil in, for example, terrorist suspects under control orders and TPIMs were made largely with no reference to the ECHR.

    For example, in Secretary of State for the Home Department v F, the issue was the right to fair trial. While the lords had to consider the ECHR, the decision was not contrary to long-standing British constitutional principles. The right to a fair trial has been enshrined under British constitutional for a very long time. The same decision could have been justified without reference to the ECHR.

    Lord Hoffman's judgment in A v Secretary of State for the Home Department did not require the existence of the ECHR to reach his conclusion. The rule of law would have sufficed - and, in fact, Hoffman made use of the rule of law in his judgment.

    Taking account of Strasbourg rulings, the system needs to balance the rights of a few individuals against the rights of the great majority.
    This statement makes any human rights lawyer cringe. The rights of few should never be de facto balanced against the rights of the majority. That would be utterly antithetical to any philosophical conception of rights. Rights are designed to protect the few FROM the majority. The particular content or scope of rights should be appropriately balanced against the content and scope of other rights. Whether or not a particular right being exercised is so exercised by the majority or minority should not be a consideration. Such a consideration double counts the rights of the majority by assuming a de facto superior position, this is a violation of the rule of law.

    I am sure that Strasbourg pass laws in the interests of the great majority at the global and pan-European level. However, some of the laws have a great negative impact at a far more localised level and are exploited by a few at the expense of the rights and safety of the majority.
    Almost all human rights lawyers will tell you that, actually, Starsbourg is ineffective. The margin of appreciation doctrine gives Strasbourg no 'teeth'. There has to be a 'European consensus' for a particular novel right or novel implementation of right to exist. Strasbourg has frequently been criticized for never going far enough in its rulings.

    The Grayling paper sets out the framework for our judiciary to review the Strasbourg rulings and then treat them as adopted or as advisory when deciding how the laws should be interpreted within UK law. Nothing more.
    This proposition is absurd. The Human Rights Act already treats Strasbourg rulings as non legally binding. The Supreme Court is free to rule however it chooses, so long as it considers Strasbourg jurisprudence.

    Taking a short glimpse at the paper, it lists as its aims "to ensure human rights are credible, just and command public support." I hate to inform them, but particular human rights decisions often won't please the public - and that's the reason rights exist, to prevent the majority from exercising what they think they ought be able to do.

    Effectively, the Conservative party is simply unhappy that Strasbourg treats the Convention as a living document capable of and necessarily having to adapt to modern times. As time changes, conceptions of human rights have broadened. The ECHR isn't the American Constitution. The Conservative Party wants human rights to be treated as Justice Antonin Scalia in the United States treats the American Constitution - as a dead document, where only the original founders' intent is relevant. I shouldn't have to extrapolate the blunders of Scalia here.

    This interpretation of a human rights document violates democratic legitimacy, contrary to the Conservative Party's claims. In treating a document only as its original writers intended it to be read or used, the government and courts ignore current democratic legitimacy of that particular piece of legislation. Just because a government passed a particular piece of legislation at some particular previous point in time, it does not follow that the originalist interpretation of that document still holds democratic force.
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    It's utterly depressing. I just can't understand the "We're too good for human rights" attitude of people in this country. Do they not care about their civil liberties? It never ceases to amaze me how careless people are about their rights when they're well off...
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    It is now government policy to abandon the postwar consensus on human rights in Europe. . .
    Quite a feat, that the EU and it's judicial organs managed to convince the world it was one and the same as the universal concept of human rights.

    I'm not a Tory I don't vote Tory so take this seriously: The Tories aren't suggesting the UK abandon human rights whatsoever, the UK is still party to the UN Human Rights charter like every other member, and the UK being of of the most progressive and liberal societies on Earth doesn't stop because we decide to have our own constitutional protections, rather than take our cue from outside.

    It's understandable why continental Europe takes so readily to uncompromising dictation from on high, they're used to paternalistic totalitarian interpretations of 'liberty' but Britain is not. Independence of will extends from the individual right up to sovereign state rights.

    The Tories aren't proposing this because they hate freedom or whatever, they're proposing it because the UK national psyche baulks at outside foreign authority dictating terms over domestic matters, no matter how well intentioned.
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    (Original post by Studentus-anonymous)
    Quite a feat, that the EU and it's judicial organs managed to convince the world it was one and the same as the universal concept of human rights.
    I don't really trust the neo-liberal European countries, under whatever name, to defend human rights too hard against the interests of rapacious corporations and authoritarian governments.

    But I sure as hell don't trust the Tories running our country either. They certainly don't stand for the rights of the people against corporations like they will go into after their term and authoritarian governments like themselves.

    I'm not a Tory I don't vote Tory so take this seriously: The Tories aren't suggesting the UK abandon human rights whatsoever, the UK is still party to the UN Human Rights charter like every other member, and the UK being of of the most progressive and liberal societies on Earth doesn't stop because we decide to have our own constitutional protections, rather than take our cue from outside.
    We are one of six with a Security Council seat so we can get away with breaching human rights without censure. The USA, China and Russia do it all the time so we are looking at that level of abuse.

    In the ECHR we are balanced by the collective opinions of 26 states in a broadly similar economic and geopolitical position whose records on human rights are much cleaner than anything the UN Security Council can offer up.

    And of course it's not even binding. If you think Strasbourg has any statutory power to enforce its decisions then you are quite simply not qualified to comment on the matter.

    It's understandable why continental Europe takes so readily to uncompromising dictation from on high, they're used to paternalistic totalitarian interpretations of 'liberty' but Britain is not. Independence of will extends from the individual right up to sovereign state rights.
    Haha, such irony. The only servile, credulous people here are the British public, manipulated as they are by the right-wing media.

    The Tories aren't proposing this because they hate freedom or whatever, they're proposing it because the UK national psyche baulks at outside foreign authority dictating terms over domestic matters, no matter how well intentioned.
    No, the Daily Mail and the rest of the right-wing press baulk at it. This is entirely down to the influence of the right-wing corporate media. There is nothing specially isolationist about the British people. Even if there were, we drafted the bloody thing in the first place! Churchill, that folk hero of the reactionary right, did it.
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    People are morons.
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    Forgive me if I misunderstood, but I assumed the Tories were promising to revise and, if necessary, remove the Human Rights Act of 1998 (of which we have already repealed numerous sections over the past 16 years, this isn't anything new), replacing it with an updated Act that contains virtually every aspect, just not the parts that require submission to the ECHR. This is to remove the restrictions and the necessity to submit to the authority of the European Court of Human Rights, who can currently over-rule any sentences in the UK, ignoring UK laws and requirements.

    It is a sad indictment of the state of our country if society is so reactionary and anti-government that they believe everything they see in the newspapers, and think that the government is trying to plunge our country into an anarchic state with no human rights whatsoever just because they are going to do something they have done multiple times in the past: revise and update the current Act, and decide on whether we allow Strasbourg ultimate control to over-rule our judgments.
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    While this subject is being overdone (the UK will be part of the UN declaration of human rights still so no less against human rights than Australia) i also disagree with this policy. While i would like the right to family life removed, the ECHR is in 90% of cases a good thing.
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    (Original post by Studentus-anonymous)
    The Tories aren't suggesting the UK abandon human rights whatsoever, the UK is still party to the UN Human Rights charter like every other member
    (Original post by Rakas21)
    While this subject is being overdone (the UK will be part of the UN declaration of human rights still so no less against human rights than Australia) i also disagree with this policy. While i would like the right to family life removed, the ECHR is in 90% of cases a good thing.
    Okay people, let's stop citing the UNDHR as if it's something useful. The UNDHR is NOT part of international law. It has NO legal effect whatsoever.
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    One problem here is that this is an example of what might be described as the Salmond fallacy; that the UK (in this case) can do what it wishes but can also compel other independent actors, the ECtHR, the Council of Europe and other sovereign states and their judiciaries to behave to us as we direct them to do.

    Very shortly the UK will be seeking the extradition of a Latvian suspect in a very nasty murder case. If I was that suspect's Latvian lawyer, I know what my first argument to oppose extradition would be. That man should not be extradited to the UK because the largest political party in the country is threatening to withdraw from the ECHR; my client's human rights are no longer safe because they will depend on the whim of British politicians and he ought not to be sent back to the UK. I think that argument might stand a good chance of success and if it doesn't win in Riga, I would give it a try in Strasbourg.

    And if that argument wins, that win will mean that a murder suspect never stands trial.
 
 
 
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