Do we face government by diktat?

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This is too important not to share, and is from the FT:

David Cameron has been secretly drawing up a plan to bypass an increasingly hostile anti-Tory majority in the House of Lords, which is threatening to wreak havoc with his legislative plans.

Lord Strathclyde is set to propose this month that the Lords should lose its veto over delegated or “secondary” legislation, such as the measure implementing tax-credit cuts.

Once that veto is removed, Mr Cameron is expected to step up his government’s increasing use of delegated legislation – also known as statutory instruments – to ram contentious measures through the upper house.

This is, of course, a response to the government's loss on tax credits, and the consequence is profound.

It is already true that statutory instruments do not receive enough parliamentary scrutiny, and are where a lot of legislation originates. Make this change and this situation will get much worse: large parts of legislation will, be whipped through the Commons and then be beyond scrutiny at any point. I am no fan of unelected legislators but when we have nothing else they play a valuable role. Now it looks like we are to have rule by diktat instead.

All successful legislatures work on the basis of appropriate checks and balances: many of these look in danger of going under this plan. This is deeply worrying: governments of all hues have a history of producing bad law when not subject to proper scrutiny and that is what is planned here. I sincerely hope all parties fight back, as must the Lords themselves. And at the same time the case for proper reform of the Upper Chamber has to be back on the table.