Rather than simply lament for how little attention is paid to the institution, I thought I’d ask some smart people if they had anything to say in response to my piece about the state of the House of Commons. Over the next little while, those responses will appear here. Next up, Max Fawcett.
In theory, the decision taken more than 30 years ago to permit live radio and television broadcasting of the activity that takes place inside the House of Commons and its constituent committees was a step in the right direction, a move that facilitated greater transparency and encouraged Canadians to participate more fully in their democracy. In practice, though, it has had a rather different effect. Like lifelong meat eaters given full and unfettered access to what happens on the killing floor of a slaughterhouse, Canadians have by and large recoiled in horror at what they see taking place in their country’s appropriately named lower chamber. Maybe this is what Otto Von Bismarck was getting at when he compared the legislative process to that of sausage-making.