Extraordinary debate in the Lords

Lord Haskel

There was an unusual event in the Lords chamber on Friday when 146 cadets and 46 veterans filled the government and opposition benches.  Friends and family occupied the galleries and cross benches.  Many were in uniform and amongst the veterans were Chelsea pensioners in their red coats.  A lively and colourful scene in the grandeur…

A Message from a Mother in Gaza

Lord Hylton

I am giving below a message recieved this month from the mother of a family in Gaza. I have twice visited Gaza in recent years. “I am Um Ali, Hanyya Ibrahim a mother from Gaza.  Me and my four children have lived through the enemy’s bombing, occupation and seige and we have survived.  They will never…

Wrong Number? – UPDATE

Lord Tyler

I thought readers would want to know that Google have been in touch with me to make clear that one cannot pay to get to the top of their standard rankings.  It is only possible to pay for a sponsored ad, which all of course appear above the standard list of results. They also say…

Google Glass half-full?

Lord Inglewood

The Select Committee on Communications, which I chair, has now taken its last evidence in its inquiry into media plurality. Our sessions, running from June until now, have included a packed and diverse schedule of witnesses. The time has now come, therefore, to put pen to paper and let you and the Government know what…

Wrong number?

Lord Tyler

An apparently innocuous Question from Lord Brabazon of Tara last week motivated some rigorous self-inquiry amongst Peers. How many of us have been caught by official looking websites, topping the list when we googled, selling us services like visa or congestion charge applications at inflated cost, when we could have obtained them free or much cheaper…

Legislating without effect

Lord Norton

After Parliament has passed a Bill, it receives Royal Assent and becomes an Act of Parliament.  Provisions of an Act take effect upon Royal Assent unless provided otherwise.  In practice, it is common to provide otherwise, with ministers being empowered by order to make commencement orders, stipulating the date on which the provisions, or particular…

The cost of the House

Lord Norton

Each year, a question is usually tabled to find out the annual total costs, and the cost per member, of the House of Commons, the House of Lords and the European Parliament.  At the end of last month, the Commercial Secretary to the Treasury gave the costs as follows: HOUSE OF COMMONS Annual cost: £392m…

The death of JFK

Baroness Deech

The personal, not the political.  The stream of newspaper supplements, plays, documentaries, is upsetting me even more than it did at the time.  Like everyone else, I remember the moment well.  I was at a party at Oxford, which broke up as the news came through.  A fellow student invited me back to his room…