Nick Clegg’s evidence

For those who may be interested in reading, rather than viewing, the Deputy Prime Minister’s evidence to the Constitution Committee last week, the uncorrected transcript (rather a good one) is available here.  A copy of his memorandum to the Committee can also be read here.  In the memorandum, note the space given over to the role of the Deputy PM and to the underlying principles of the proposed changes.

About Lord Norton

Professor of Government at Hull University, and Member of the House of Lords
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8 Responses to Nick Clegg’s evidence

  1. Hmm, I see the ‘underlying principle’ behind Lords reform is completely back to front…I can’t believe the nerve of the DPM to admit that he doesn’t care what they do when they get in the Upper House. He needs to read a couple of books on basic constitutional law!

  2. ladytizzy says:

    Does Mr Clegg also get to wear a Milk Monitor badge, too?

    PS Thanks for the transcript. For those of us who get a max of 0.5Mbps (assuming the service provider provides this “service” in the first place) and who have also mysteriously fallen outside of the ‘Final Third’ (according to Ed Vaizey), viewing/listening requires the stamina of a marathon runner, the patience of a Middle East peace negotiator as well as the ability to fix quality foam to nearby walls at head-height. I’ll have a read after a lie-down.

  3. ladytizzy says:

    Apropos internet service providers, you might remember the problem of unsolicited phone calls which attracted comments on LotB a while back. There is now another, relatively new, menace of ‘silent’ calls. Typically, when answering a call the phone goes dead after a few seconds of silence. For whatever reason, the good-ish news is that 1471 may well give a number that can be tracked on the internet.

    My beef with AOL has been escalated due to silent calls from them and I can confirm the complaints in this page link are wholly representative: (a non-specific page in the series – all saying much the same)

    I am not in a position to neccesarily link the 5-6 day breakdown of internet service to their phone calls just a couple of days later promising a new line (as if), cheaper contract etc; maybe it has been a coincidence, maybe they just got to my telephone number at the same time.

    Maybe I shouldn’t be suspicious of cold calls promising gifts from the gods whilst being unwilling to send the terms and conditions until a contract has been agreed. After all, as they say, there is a cooling-off period of seven days, plenty of time to read the small print.

    According to George Osborne’s CSR speech yesterday, the gvt will be busy spending £530m “…over the next four years to bring super-fast broadband to rural parts of our country that the private sector will take longer to reach” ie the Highlands and Islands, North Yorkshire, Cumbria and Herefordshire (so close, but no cigar). But what is being done to make the providers provide?

    Similar can be said about BT, Sky, and Paypal. All are big, big providers and, when they work as expected, are fantastic. But they breakdown, and when they do there must be a measurable impact on the NHS (seriously) because their customer services are as close to zero as humanly possible. Even lower than the customer services of Lloyds TSB, Tesco’s, or PC World.

    It’s one thing misselling a product, quite another misselling a service.

    Which sorts of gets us back to Mr Clegg.

  4. Croft says:

    I feel your pain LT – I seem to get a never ending stream of cold calls from double glazing salesmen (usually the same one every few weeks – do they think I’ll suddenly change my mind!) and having put some of my numbers into that website a number of cold calling firms appear. I suspect government is to blame (indirectly) as 99.9% of my cold calls started after a planning application and are around those products. The way details of applications are distributed makes harassing applicants child’s play.

  5. Lord Norton says:

    Croft and ladytizzy: If you think there is any way of dealing with cold calls through regulation or legislation, let me know, but I suspect they are virtually impossible to prevent. I find leaving the answerphone on is quite useful.

    • ladytizzy says:

      Right-o, I’ll make this a project for the winter months.

      As you say, answerphones are good for screening but the downside to them is the real loss of new business. Potential customers rarely leave messages to small traders, neither will they bother if the line is forever engaged, contributed to by the above-mentioned irritants. Similar happens to blogs like LotB…

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