Another hectic week

I have just finished invigilating an examination.  This is the closest I suspect I will get this week to a period of relative quiet.  The rest of the week will be spent dashing between Westminster (the continuing saga of the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill – more long nights expected), Glasgow (I am giving the Stevenson Lecture, appropriately enough on ‘Reform of the House of Lords?’) and Hull (winter graduation ceremonies – I am the presenting officer for Chris Mullin).  In between, or (in the case of the PVSC Bill) during, these I will try to do the occasional post.  Watch this space.

Forthcoming: to whet the appetite of longstanding Hull politics graduates, I shall soon be posting a photograph of the graduating class of 1983…

About Lord Norton

Professor of Government at Hull University, and Member of the House of Lords
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14 Responses to Another hectic week

  1. Raj says:

    I’m very much looking forward to hearing your Stevenson Lecture tomorrow. I’ve enjoyed all of them so far and was quite excited to see your name on the bill.

    I’ll just go back to lurking now :).

  2. Lord Norton says:

    Many thanks. I think I had better get to work on my speech.

  3. Carl.H says:

    He has been described in The House Magazine – the journal of both Houses of Parliament – as ‘our greatest living expert on Parliament’

    Question: Are there dead experts that are better ?

    Some interesting lecturers and subject matter all on video from the Stevenson Trust:

    I don`t envy your schedule or your travel.

    • franksummers3ba says:

      Everyone and anyone,

      I quote myself and Lord Norton in a commentary on a post last month:
      Frank W. Summers III (me)
      Lord Norton,
      Congratulations on your rise and broadening of reputation. You have gained a good bit in terms of what even serious historian use now and will use to assess your impact at some future date. However, having climbed so much of the mountain the hardest bit is often at the summit. You will have all Fleet Street can offer your legacy when the articles switch from the indefinite to the definite –”the leading expert”. Historians, readers and publishers will put a little extra support behind that man’s monograph. Although a serious biography of some kind is already fairly certain at your place in the records.

      Lord Norton says:
      December 21, 2010 at 9:04 pm
      Frank W. Summers III: Many thanks, though I think that – like Chris Mullin – I am still at the foothills.

      This all comes from:

  4. djb13 says:

    I find living experts are more conversational.

  5. David Morris says:

    Will the Stevenson lecture be available to watch online at some point? I am not a member of that university and I’m not able to make it to Glasgow.

  6. Raj says:

    Great lecture, Lord Norton, I found it enjoyable and informative! I had hoped to hang around and have a word with you afterwards but alas I had to leave pretty much immediately afterwards.

  7. dave thawley says:

    Hi Lord Norton

    This is off topic and it is something you may want to keep out of anyway. Lord Taylor has said that he was told by other peers that he could use the expenses as a way of generating an allowance. If this is the case then it seems hard that he has been found guilty. What is your opinion on this ?

  8. Lord Norton says:

    dave thawley: I would distinguish between those peers who claimed up to the maximum of what they were legitimately entitled to claim – who actually did live outside London and needed overnight accommodation in London when attending the House – and those who claimed for overnight accommodation when their sole homes were in London. Some of the former may have seen it as a way of compensating for the fact that there is no salary but the important point is that they at least were claiming for what they were entitled to claim.

    I put this in the past tense as we now have a new regime which is much more clear, transparent and robust and makes it extremely difficult to fiddle.

    • dave thawley says:

      Thanks for the clarification and its great to hear that the process is more robust so that mistakes (or fiddles) are less likely to happen in the future. My concern was that Lord Taylor was just doing what ‘everyone else’ was doing. In my own work as an engineer I know that written processes and procedures sometimes get modified over time by a gradual shift in their meaning (i.e. socially constructed). After a while what is being done bares little resemblance to what is written down but everyone believes they are doing what is required. If Lord Taylor had fell into this trap (i.e. he believed that what he was doing was correct because that is what ‘everyone’ does) then it seems unfair he is guilty. If he was in a small minority doing what he was doing then he would (in my eyes at least) be more culpable and I would think it would be just to come down hard upon him.
      Cheers, Dave

      • Carl.H says:

        I think inconcise rules led lots of peers and Mps into the trap also the fact that in society as a whole the problem is prolific. Few are now being made examples of and carrying the can for what I believe was a majority. The system that was operated is undeniably at fault in allowing it to occur.

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