13:17, October 20 78 0 theguardian.com

2020-10-20 13:17:04
Worrying threat to the supreme court

The UK’s supreme court, from which Lord Kerr recently retired after very distinguished service (Report, 19 October), faces the UK’s parliament. It is a potent symbol of the rule of law – a virtue for which the UK was, until 2020, universally admired. It is probably the most transparent and accessible court in the world. It is understandable that any government with authoritarian tendencies might wish to send it back behind closed doors, and stop the live streams, tourist visits and informative website.

You mention the proposal by “the influential Judicial Power Project” to abolish the supreme court. It should perhaps be renamed the Australian Power Project, as its leading lights are rightwing Australian academics, at least two of whom teach law at Oxford University. The JPP is part of Policy Exchange, whose chairman was the Australian high commissioner to the UK from 2014 to 2018. Like their compatriot Rupert Murdoch, these people seem determined to uproot the UK from its physical and spiritual home in western Europe, and to send it floating into the Anglosphere. Is it a coincidence that the government’s preferred euphemism for a no-deal Brexit is “Australia-style”?

William Lacey

Bath

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