Thursday, 11 June 2009


As you know, I'm not really into politics and all Westminstery shenanigans, but I read this here post on OpenEurope, and I was a little struck by this quoth from recently resigned MP Ian Gibson:-
"There will be atime for a referendum but there has not been a seriousdebate (sic) where all sides of the argument are put It reqires an honestdebate (sic) based on facts I believe it is an issue which will be seriouslydebated (sic) in the next few years"
The lack of spaces in the words 'seriousdebate' and 'honestdebate' suggests either a historic keyboard coffee spill or some ill-typed Word find/replace action.

Now, Mr Gibson isn't clear as to whether he means the aforementioned seriousdebates and honestdebates taking place in the House of Commons or the UK as a whole (media/pubs/tube to work in the morning), but for the sake of falsifyability, what does an 'honestdebate' or a 'seriousdebate' actually look like? How will we know if one is happening?

Have there been 'honestdebates' or 'seriousdebates' in the past that we can look at as an example?

Or is it always (in recent memory) just partisan posturing and hectoring, with no persuasion or changes of opinion as more information bubbles to the surface, where a vote at the end is won or lost as a result of force of numbers in each party rather than by the debate?

Or is the concept of a 'honestdebates' and 'seriousdebates' just a meaningless platitude to conceal the true activities that goes on in politics?

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