How would you reform honours?

Discussion in 'The Dive' started by atry, 12 Jul 2018.

  1. atry

    atry Member

    Ok, the British honours is a mess. Cameron's wife's hairdresser getting one and now people on the committees who decide who gets them getting them. In a more recent example one of the cave divers who found the trapped Thai children has an M.B.E. for saving life. A civil servant near us has received a higher award for doing his deskjob for twenty years.
  2. porridge

    porridge Member

    Shouldn't get one for doing your job unless risk to life and limb are involved. Really shouldn't get one for winning an election or two.
  3. tirial

    tirial IT fixer extraordinaire

    What do you think about Athletes and sports personalities getting them?
  4. Reader

    Reader Vile Critic

    Sadly, scandals on the honours list are nothing new. Alongside Cameron (Con), stand Lloyd-George (Liberal party) outright sold titles at set rates to raise funds, Harold Wilson (Lab) had a Lavendar List which his own secretary refused to be on so he would not be named alongside the "undeserving" and Tony Blair (Lab) was investigated for political corruption, but dropped as they would unable to convict. The suggestion of political pressure in that decision is appalling. The 1925 Act was supposed to make cash-for-honours a crime, but when they tried to update it in the Hayden Phillips Review the parties could not agree.

    I am no longer sure that Honours are anything but a mark of cronyism with a few deserving souls thrown in as sugar-coating to ensure that O.B.E.s are not seen as the scarlet letter they so often are.
  5. porridge

    porridge Member

    Lifetime achievement award, Steve Redgrave, mebby. One gold medal, nah. They got their award. Its the medal.
  6. jessica

    jessica Active Member

  7. Tregaron

    Tregaron Member

    That is more cynical than even I have managed. It is now going to be difficult to look at O.B.E.s without thinking of the "Scarlet Letter of Cronyism". I can see certain people taking those views rather badly.

    How I would reform them: do not award people for doing their job. Put a nameless version out in front of a random panel drawn from the electoral roll, but as a blind CV or Masters exam is done. Let their deeds stand on their own merit. This does mean someone putting down: was Prime Minister for for X years may find themselves judged by other party's voters.
  8. Reader

    Reader Vile Critic

    I am pushing ninety. What are our political masters going to do, cut my pension, reduce my NHS access, take away my local doctor? They've already done those, so they have very few sticks left to hit me with, and I have very few damns left to give.

    I would improve your suggestion in one way: make the blind CVs show any government or political position held, or the person's job if relevant to their honours claim. It makes it harder for them to disguise cronyism under pretty language.
  9. Tregaron

    Tregaron Member

    It has been suggested that the cave divers who found the Thai children should be knighted, but they turned it down. Seriously, if they don't deserve one, I can think of very few who do.
  10. tirial

    tirial IT fixer extraordinaire

    Unfortunately the current system is aimed at those who work in the Civil Service. The criteria are given here: Nominate someone for an honour or award
    • made achievements in public life
    • committed themselves to serving and helping Britain
    It outright states that 'Usually they will have made life better for others' or been outstanding, but 'usually' is not 'always' or even 'necessarily' a.k.a. have the right friends, or give the right money and everything is flexible.

    Personally I would have thought being outstanding and making life better for others should be the two fixed criteria, the other two should be the flexible ones.
  11. Post-Life Crisis

    Post-Life Crisis New Member

    Public life just means working in the public sector. Thought people were kidding, but these really are awards just for doing their job? If that's the case, the honours should be scrapped.

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