1.1.1 The UK has had a long period of unbroken
democratic rule - this is often seen as evidence
of the strength of its constitutional system
1.1.2 Changes to the constitution often come about due to democratic pressure.
22.214.171.124 For example, the House of Lords had powers reduced because it is unelected.
1.2.1 The UK constitution is flexible an easy to change.
126.96.36.199 Remains relevant an up to date
188.8.131.52.1 Can adapt and respond to social and political change.
184.108.40.206.1.1 For example, devolution was a response to rising nationalism
1.2.2 The statute of law
220.127.116.11 It is easier and quicker to introduce
an Act of Parliament than to amend
the US constitution.
18.104.22.168 The UK's constitution is not entrenched
1.3 Effective Government
1.3.1 Given the absence of a "written" constitution, government decisions that are backed by Parliament cannot be overturned by the judiciary.
1.3.2 The UK's system of parliamentary government, based on the Westminster model, usually means that the government get their way in Parliament.
22.214.171.124 The concentration of power in the hands of the executive within the parliamentary system allows UK governments to take strong and decisive action.
126.96.36.199.1 Thatcher government
deregulation and reform around
1.4 History & Tradition
1.4.1 The constitution is organic
188.8.131.52 Has grown over time, linking current and previous governments
184.108.40.206.1 Tested by time
220.127.116.11 In comparison, codified constitutions have been "created".
2.1.1 It is sometimes difficult to know what the constitution says
18.104.22.168 Surrounded by confusion because they are not 'hard and fast'.
2.1.2 Particulary applied to unwritten elements
22.214.171.124 For example, the convention of individual ministerial responsibility requires that
ministers are responsible for blunders made by their departments. But does this
mean that they should resign when civil servants make mistakes or only when
mistakes are made by the minister?
126.96.36.199.1 Further, does responsibility
imply that anyone has to
resign or just that the minister
must provide answers and
promise to put mistakes right?
2.2 Elective Dictatorship
2.2.1 Once elected, UK governments can more or less act as they please until they come up for re-election.
188.8.131.52 Sovereign power is vested in the hands of Parliament
184.108.40.206 Parliament is routinely controlled, even dominated, by the government of the day.
2.2.2 The government could make changes to
the constitution, which creates the
impression that the UK does not have a
220.127.116.11 Widening the powers of government creates the possibility that government may become
oppressive and tyrannical.
2.3.1 Ineffective or weak checks and balances.
2.3.2 One of the key features of a liberal democracy is that government
power is limited through internal tensions between and amongst
government bodies. However, UK government is characterized by
the concentration of power than its fragmentation.
18.104.22.168 The House of Commons is more powerful than the House of Lords
22.214.171.124 The prime minister tends to dominate the cabinet.
126.96.36.199 The executive usually controls Parliament
188.8.131.52 Central government controls local government.
2.4 Weak protection of rights
2.4.1 There is nothing that forces the government to respect individual freedom and basic rights, apart from elections.
184.108.40.206 Elections tend to empower majorities rather than minorities or individuals.