Morals faded away from UK politics

There is no trace of morals in Britain™s political scene even if politicians prescribe ethics for other countries.

Britons were particularly amazed at the news, published by Western media, claiming the oldest parliamentary democratic system belongs to the British. A system comprised of major parties and regarded as homogenous by some political science scholars.

It is spectacular to see the faces of those British people, who are proud of such the system, when official records reveal that lawmakers at the Houses of Parliament tried to access pornographic websites more than 300,000 times during 365 days of the year.

The British Parliament is the supreme legislative body in the UK which consists of two parts, including the House of Lords and the House of Commons. Both of the Houses meet in separate chambers in the Palace of Westminster. The Commons is considered as the main decision maker and with nearly 600 members all regulations are in its hands. Most of its members are from Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat parties. Currently, none of the parties have the absolute majority of parliamentary seats and the Tories along with the Liberal Democrats have formed a Coalition government with Conservative David Cameron as its head.

Members of the House of Lords, which is mostly symbolic and a reminder of the history of Britain™s class society, are not elected through general elections. Some of the House of Lords’ representatives are Lords who remain in the position for lifetime. A number of seats in the House are also hereditary. Lords™ main task is examining and discussing new proposed rules to ensure their fairness. However, as it was mentioned, the work of the House of Lords is generally symbolic and what is passed in the House of Commons becomes legitimate.

Around 5,000 people are believed to work on the British parliamentary estate. Based on recent revelations, every MP, peer or staff at the Houses of Parliament has visited adult content sites 60 times in average over the past year. It is not exactly clear how many of the attempts to click on pornographic websites were among lawmakers or staff, but the point is that it happened in London™s Westminster and raised a lot of sensitivity. The figures also showed wide variations between months in the number of attempts to access websites categorized as pornography, ranging from 114,844 in November 2012 to 15 in February 2013.

Transparency International UK (TI-UK) commissioned a major research project into corruption in the UK, asking participants, œTo what extent do you think the followings are corrupt?”

It was found that the British public perceive political parties to be the most corrupt sector in the UK and the parliament to be the third most corrupt. Some 65.5 percent of Britons view the country™s political parties as being affected by corruption. Sports sector with 56.9 percent is ranked second. The third place belongs to the parliament that 55.7 percent believe has a corruption problem. The next categories include the followings: local governments with 47.4 percent, trade sector with 43.8, city services with 41.9, immigration services with 40.8 percent, media with 39.8 percent, prison service with 28.2 percent, religious institutions with 28.1 percent, police with 28.1 percent, NGOs with 19.5 percent, judiciary with 19.3 percent, the health service with 14.4 percent, army with 13.3 percent and education with 10.8 percent.

The British parliament is identified by the public as the third most corrupt sector. It is worth noting that political parties, which have the highest level of corruption from people™s point of view, play the greatest role in the parliament. Therefore, the system that leads to the formation of the parliament is the party system that the public consider to be the most corrupt one available.

It is also interesting that some 90 percent of the British public believe the UK government is governed by certain departments that only think about their own interests rather than those of the society. Meanwhile, around 62 percent say the government is not doing enough to address corruption.

Only 10 percent of the workforce in Britain earns more than £40,000 while over half lives with an income less than £23,000 a year. This comes as the annual salary for an MP was £64,766 in 2009, increasing to even £185,000 if considering allowances. A minister of state, cabinet minister and prime minister each earn £100,568, £137,579 and £188,849 per year respectively. These incomes are higher than what is needed to imply that parliamentary democracy exists in the UK.

Indeed, the only conclusion that could be drawn is that the Parliament of the United Kingdom consists of people who do not represent citizens and this fact persisted in all the years following the Second World War. MPs might be able to represent the community if they live in the society, but current representatives follow the lifestyle of only 10 percent of the UK population.

Corruption in the British parliament means the country™s whole political system is corrupted. Organized financial corruption and moral corruption certainly do not occur by chance. Religious and even civil ethics have no place in the lives of British politicians. This is not specific to politicians.

Whenever it comes to power and fame in Britain, corruption also comes along. Suffice it to say that a number of presenters in The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) have been accused of sexual abuse.

But why morals have faded away from the UK™s political scene? In reply to the question, we have to say that morals have disappeared from the political arena of Western countries not suddenly and because of the nature of the power, but instead in an organized and theoretical framework.

According to major political theories in the West, civil and religious ethics have no role in governmental decision-making as any commitment to those morals is regarded as an obstacle to persistence of the administration.

A leading theorist who directly referred to the subject was Niccolo Machiavelli. He considers special morals for authorities, contrasting with civil and religious ethics of the society.

Issues that could be regarded as wicked in government ethics, including lying, violating others™ rights and even killing them with the aim of preserving power, are all necessary from Machiavelli™s viewpoint. These ideas played a role in the formation of a theoretical school known as realism though the doctrine has a longer history than renaissance. The majority of scholars in international relations believe that most Western governments act in a way in their foreign policy that despite its liberal literature it could only be interpreted in the framework of realism.

When politicians systematically come to believe that morals could be ignored for the sake of preserving power, there remains no excuse for spreading this pattern to other areas and applying it to protect political interests and party power. In this way, a politician who has gained power will misuse his chance and occasionally legalize the act when he finds the supervision of public organizations insufficient. Therefore, the holy faith of Islam has emphasized the importance of the concept of virtue and the individual™s belief in permanent supervision of God. Moreover, special attention has been paid to the government of righteous in Islam and Shiism.

In London™s ruling administration, from Westminster to Downing Street, there is no trace of morals even if British politicians repeatedly speak about human rights and prescribe ethics for other countries.

Article by Montea Cristo: Freelance Journalist

DISCLAIMER: The authors’ views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Press TV News Network.


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