"Supreme Court Plans an Attack on Independent Judiciary, Says Labour"

(That's the UK Supreme Court.)

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Another fun headline, via Prof. Mark Liberman (Language Log):

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  1. The rampant nannystatism in the UK is a good example of what happens without proper balance and separation of powers with one all powerful branch.

    1. Seems you’re undercutting your argument, given that the UK is not really thought of as a nightmare place to live compared to the US.

      1. if you complain about the traffic in Los Angeles does that automatically mean you want to live in Somalia and have said it is better in every way?

      2. Actually, given some of the press both inside and outside the UK (such as the repeated complaints that books like Orwell’s 1984 were supposed to be warnings, not playbooks), there is a growing subset of folks who do think of it as a nightmare place to live. Certainly anyone who values privacy can legitimately think so.

        1. For an example just today, at least the US health authorities aren’t doing this. (Yet, anyway.)

        2. As well as the current proposal in the Scottish parliament that would criminalize “hate speech” at one’s own dinner table and make it compulsory for family members to report it.

          They may as well change the name of Britain to Airstrip One and have done.

      3. How much longer will it be so, when people are being arrested at Speaker’s Corner, for… speaking? It’s courts deciding constitutional issues that protect liberty and England without liberty isn’t England anymore, it’s a gloomy, rainy place with bad food and bad teeth.

    2. I tend to agree with you, but the post was about the horrifically written headline.

  2. And we can’t stop it unless the attack is successful!

  3. How can this be fixed? I suggest ‘Labour calls supreme court plans an “attack on independent judiciary”‘

    1. Brits might not see the ambiguity us Yanks do. I think this is a case where they would conjugate the verb as plural, to agree with the multiple members of the supreme court. So “plans” is more obviously a noun in this case.

      1. I now think all of this fails. the problem is “whose plans” or “who is making plans”. For this story, the supreme court has no plans, it is the conservatives (?) who have plans for the supreme court. To make THIS clear is the trick: “Proposed Supreme court rules an attack on independent judiciary, says Labour.”

  4. Things are getting interesting along these lines in Ireland as well. Interesting debate over the powers of a Chief Justice on a collegial court.

    (I’ve always wondered if the “Mr. Chief Justice; and may it please the Court” referred to the CJ of the US or to the CJ of the present tribunal.)

    Mr. D.

  5. Was there ever really a question about judicial independence back when the Law Lords were the ultimate court of appeal on matters of law?

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