Law and Rights
Are the Judges too powerful? or Are they overstepping the line? Two more Judicial Speeches
Are the judges too powerful? - A Speech in which Lord Dyson (Master of the Rolls) considered two distinct questions. The first is whether, on the purely domestic front, our courts are trespassing into areas which should not be their preserve. The second is whether the European Court of Human Rights is overstepping the mark in imposing political and social values on the UK for which it has no democratic mandate. Both questions raise big issues on which many have expressed views in recent years.
The speech ranged over the traditional approach of the judiciary to keeping the common law in line with contemporary society; to judicial review; to the European Court of Human Rights and, finally, to the Human Rights Act 1998. His conclusion is that the judges are not too powerful and that their task is exercised with restraint and respect for Parliament. This is a very readable speech and can be seen as a measured and moderate response to certain other recent speeches by senior judicial figures - notably that of Lord Sumption in his Azlan Shah lecture in Kuala Lumpur (November 2013).
The Creaney Memorial Lecture delivered by Lord Justice Moses is also interesting - The Guardian - Senior Judge takes on critics of human rights convention . The text of the lecture is available via the Judiciary website - Hitting the balls out of court: Are the judges stepping over the line? Speeches:
20th November 2013, Lord Sumption - 27th Sultan Azlan Shah Lecture in Kuala Lumpur - The Limits of Law.
Earlier post - My thoughts (as a citizen) on Lord Sumption's Azlan Shah Lecture
Lord Justice Laws on 27th November in the Hamlyn Lectures 2013 - see Lecture 3 Common Law and Europe.
Lady Hale (Deputy President of the Supreme Court) on 28th November - Lady Hale at the Warwick Law Lecture 2013 (PDF) - What?s the point of human rights?
- Human Rights Day ~ 65 Years Since The Universal Declaration Of Human Rights
10th December - Human Rights Day. In a letter to The Telegraph, leaders of many 'civil society groups' have urged that Britain stands firm on the European Convention on Human Rights and the Human Rights Act. Both of these were inspired...
- Thoughts On The Hamlyn Lecture By Lord Justice Laws
Some judges are now expressing (extrajudicially) their opinions about the European Court of Human Rights. On 20th November, Lord Sumption (Justice of the Supreme Court) delivered the 27th Sultan Azlan Shah Lecture in Kuala Lumpur - The Limits of Law. ...
- My Thoughts (as A Citizen) On Lord Sumption's Azlan Shah Lecture
On 20th November, Lord Sumption (Justice of the Supreme Court) delivered the 27th Sultan Azlan Shah Lecture in Kuala Lumpur - The Limits of Law. This was followed by Lord Justice Laws on 27th November in the Hamlyn Lectures 2013 - see Lecture 3...
- Lady Hale Joins In ~ Speech At Warwick 28th November ~ And The Attorney-general's View On 'europe'
Following hard on the heels of Lord Sumption and Lord Justice Laws, Lady Hale (Deputy President of the Supreme Court) has joined the fray on human rights. Here is a link to her speech at Warwick on 28th November. Here is an antidote...
- Sir Stephen Sedley's Essay
Now in retirement, former Lord Justice of Appeal Sir Stephen Sedley has written a powerful essay entitled "Judicial Politics - Stephen Sedley on Separation of Powers." The text has been made publicly available via the London Review of Books and,...
Law and Rights