You’re not the boss of me, or are you?

Has not the British Constitution changed so much since the Act of Parliament allowing admittance into the European Common Market in 1972 that some old rules cease to have application — and the myth of Parliamentary sovereignty is one? EU sovereignty trumping the country’s own sovereignties has been in place in law long enough to have obtained adverse possession over the British Constitution, perhaps.

The economist businessman, journalist and constitutional expert Walter Bagehot argued that momentous alterations such as the Reform Act of 1832 took 30 years to be recognised and absorbed into the Constitutional arrangement, because the politicians and judges were poorly armed for the fight with the constitutional weapons of previous wars…

“A new Constitution does not produce its full effect as long as all its subjects were reared under an old Constitution, as long as its statesmen were trained by that old Constitution. It is not really tested till it comes to be worked by statesmen and among a people neither of whom are guided by a different experience.”

So it is today. Parliamentarians and lawyers are clinging to the fiction that Parliament and the so-called Supreme Court are still supreme law-making bodies, when it plainly isn’t the case any longer. Their argument is that it once was, before the European Communities Act in 1972. They feel that as it was Parliament that passed the Act giving away their supremacy and allowing the various international treaties to take place that further eroded their power, they can call back time. After jumping from a cliff and halfway to the rocks below there is no way back by just wishing you had not jumped off in the first place.

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