|Removal of Peerages and Knighthoods for Failure
||Dear Sir George,
Maintaining the Integrity of the Knighthood and Peerages
I sure you will agree that the present economic situation has shown the worst of individuals in positions of high office and government policy’s that have helped to affect the worst recession that the country has seen for over 80 years. It is too easy to blame America and keep reiterating that it’s a world recession which is affecting the UK. But it was British people and the British government that allowed 110% mortgages and buying bad debt with little due diligence from the FSA and The Bank of England by enforcing better financial management.
The present theme of the government is that we shouldn’t reward failure by giving a bonus for their efforts during the last 18 months. But again the government could have stopped this present aspect by better due diligence and stricter regulation by the Bank of England and the FSA. This hypocrisy of the Government of the day constantly rewards failure with Knighthoods and Peerages and looks the other way when they bring their position into disrepute.
However, the theme of my letter is to put forward a suggestion that we do not reward failure in Government with Peerages and knighthoods for failure and remove an award for failure in the future. We are very reluctant to withdrawn awards for failure of individuals that have received them. The prestige of their appointment as a Lord or a Sir gives them a statesmanship appearance, but due to failure reduces the prestige of their appointment and to the order of a Knighthood or Peerage due their failure. We have many situations over the years that individuals have broken the law, failed in their position of high office, but still have been awarded years later with a peerage or a knighthood. Even when they have a Peerage or Knighthood and break the law they are allowed to keep their award. This reduces the integrity of the award and sends the wrong message to the general public.
• I believe if an individual with an award is sent to jail he/she should be stripped of their award
• If the individual is found guilty of fraud he/she should be stripped of their award
• If the individual brings the country into disrepute he/she should be stripped of their award
• If a member of the Government with Peerage of Knighthood is sacked from the Cabinets he/she should be stripped of their award
• If a member of the Government brings the country or his position into disrepute should not be given an award of a Knighthood or Peerage. (John Prescott comes to mind)
We need to raise the integrity of the County through these awards, but maintain it by stripping people of the award for failure. We need role models at every level in society that lead the county through their behaviour and bearing within society. The present system does not lead by example, but constantly leave a bad taste in mouth of the general public.
I am more than happy to meet up and discuss this serious matter.
|Date Issue Raised:
||02 Mar 2009
||Thank you for your email about the integrity of the knighthood and the peerage. I agree that it is simplistic to blame all the problems that confront the UK on the importation of sub-prime mortgages from the USA. You set out a number of problems which are home grown.
At the moment, I believe it is not possible to remove a life peerage, although this is something which is under review. I believe that people can be stripped of their knighthoods, and their membership of the Privy Council revoked. This is normally only done after the commission of a very serious offence – for example after John Stonehouse was sentenced to prison for faking his own death.
However, I am not sure I would go quite as far as you advocate by taking away peerages or knighthoods from those who are sacked from the Cabinet; and it would be a rather subjective judgement to decide whether or not somebody had ‘brought the country into disrepute’.
I am all in favour of higher standards in public life, but remain to be convinced that the somewhat draconian measures you advocate would advance the cause.
Best wishes, George Young