Ministry of Justice a “nest of liberals”

21 July 2010 by

Simon Hoggart has written an entertaining sketch in the Guardian, suggesting that the new Ministry of Justice is in fact a “nest of liberals”, and may end up being a fifth column inside the Coalition Government.

We posted earlier this week on the mixed reactions which have been inspired by the government’s early civil liberties agenda, although the majority opinion seems fairly positive. Hoggart suggests that in fact a dose of liberalism is sorely needed in the current government:

The Ministry of Justice turns out to be a nest of liberals in the coalition government. They need a few – the current Lib Dems are roughly as liberal as combination of Ayn Rand and Hanging Judge Jeffreys.

It is the Conservatives, according to Hoggart, who are the true liberals within the Coalition in general and the Ministry of Justice in particular:

… I reflected that this may be the first Conservative government to feel that they might, just might, have gone too far in a non-oppressive, egalitarian, politically correct, diversity-aware direction.

Earlier Ken Clarke, the lord chancellor, was asked about the Human Rights Act of 1998, which Tories profess to hate. Not Ken. He had written that opposition to the act was “xenophobic nonsense” But he didn’t miss a beat. “I have given a range of views in the past,” he said. Rubbish. Jack Straw silkily congratulated him on always holding the same liberal views.

As I said, the Ministry of Justice is a fifth column inside the coalition.

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