Saturday, May 13, 2006

The rule of common sense

Tony BlairAfter the granting of asylum this week to Afghani plane hijackers, Matthew Paris is astonished that Tony Blair thinks that "common sense" should take precedence over the law:

We do not have such a law. Perhaps (as The Sun believes) we should. Perhaps the present law is wrong. EVIL TRIUMPHS said its headline; but, demonstrating a more sophisticated grasp of the issues than the Prime Minister, The Sun went on to conclude that the law we have is “a stupid law”. So The Sun at least recognises that it is possible for the law to yield results that defy common sense. Mr Blair’s reasoning is more primitive. He thinks that if something does not seem to him to be common sense, it cannot be the law. It was dismaying to see David Cameron and David Davis chiming in too; and cheap of the Conservatives to jump on this bandwagon.

It is doubly dismaying that Labour and the Conservatives are now using the Human Rights Act as a political football, with Blair making dark threats of reform and Cameron promising to amend or repeal the Act.

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