Results 1–20 of 66 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Lord Plant of Highfield

Atrial Fibrillation — Question for Short Debate (4 Nov 2015)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, most of what needed to be said has been said. I echo everything that noble Lords have said about the initiative by the noble Lord, Lord Black, and I am very pleased that he called for this debate. Like other noble Lords, I have had AF for a very long time—20 years or more—and I have been taking warfarin every day, along with a low-dose aspirin, for 20 years. This medication was...

Legal Systems: Rule of Law — Motion to Take Note (10 Jul 2014)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I should like to add my thanks to the noble and learned Lord, Lord Woolf, for initiating this debate. Perhaps I may draw attention to my interests as set out in the register. I want to devote all my remarks to the idea of the rule of law, because what exactly that might mean is not without controversy. There is a fairly straightforward idea of the rule of law, which I think is...

Faith Communities — Question for Short Debate (29 May 2012)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, the Human Rights Act has played a major role in securing, on a statutory basis, the freedom of religious belief. However, the protection of the freedom to manifest belief has become much more controversial. The courts have got into the position of having to determine whether a particular practice is intrinsic to a religion or not. The different findings by the courts on this issue...

Independent Commission on Banking — Debate (15 Sep 2011)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I thank my noble friend Lord Myners for initiating this timely debate. I shall concentrate my short remarks on issues to do with accountability and responsibility in the investment banking sector. These remarks are not the result of any specific expertise in the area. I am neither a banker nor an economist; I am an academic philosopher by trade. Nevertheless, these reflections,...

Fixed-term Parliaments Bill: Second Reading (Continued) (1 Mar 2011)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I add my voice to all those who welcomed the noble Lord, Lord Cormack, and congratulate him on his maiden speech. I am very pleased that he has become a Member of this House. We go back a very long way. We were at school together. I was well under his radar. He was head boy and I was a recalcitrant first-year pupil. But after he left he endowed an essay prize that I happened to win...

Coalition Government — Debate (continued) (20 Jan 2011)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I shall focus, as my noble friend Lady Symons did at the beginning of her speech-and I thank her for inaugurating this debate-on the issues of manifestos and mandates in the context of coalition. Over the past generation at least, the party manifesto at elections has become rather akin to a quasi-contract between government and the electorate. It is clear why that should have...

Coalition Government — Debate (continued) (20 Jan 2011)

Lord Plant of Highfield: If the AV referendum goes through, more people may well vote Green or for the nationalist parties and so on, and it may well be that over a number of elections other parties will rise up the electoral ladder so that they can, as a minority party, be in competition with the Liberal Democrats. At the moment, the Liberal Democrats are the only feasible coalition partner that we can envisage in...

Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill: Second Reading (1st Day) (15 Nov 2010)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I want to concentrate my remarks on the proposals for voting reform. I agree with the criticisms of the rest of the Bill as set out by many noble Lords, particularly by my noble and learned friend Lord Falconer of Thoroton, and put crisply by the noble Lord, Lord Alton. However, I shall leave that on one side and concentrate on the issue of the referendum and electoral reform. If...

Constitutional Reform — Debate (28 Jan 2010)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I want to use the short time available to argue in favour of supporting a referendum, or some kind of national debate, on a choice between first past the post and the alternative vote. I believe that that view is supported by my right honourable friend the Prime Minister and many other members of the Cabinet. Taking my cue from my esteemed teacher and noble friend Lord Parekh, I say...

Queen's Speech — Debate (5th Day) (25 Nov 2009)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I will confine my remarks to questions about bank regulation and supervision because the financial crisis has undercut in a very severe way conventional wisdom about accountability and responsibility in banks. There were two strands to that conventional wisdom. The first was that competition coupled with the threat of bankruptcy would pressure banks into serving the needs of their...

Economy — Debate (7 May 2009)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, like other noble Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Forsyth, for facilitating this debate. I am rather dauntingly aware that I am neither an economist nor a businessman; in fact, I am an academic philosopher. I want to concentrate on one thing in my speech. It is an abstract point, but I hope that it will not be arcane or without interest. I shall concentrate on the value or price...

Welfare: Churches and Faith Communities (9 Oct 2008)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I very much welcome this debate and should perhaps declare an interest as a lay canon at Winchester Cathedral. I very much agree with the emphasis on the role of the voluntary sector, churches and faith communities in the diversity of civil society and its crucial role in the culture of a free society. I also welcome the involvement of the voluntary sector and the churches in...

Education: Adult Learners (3 Dec 2007)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I declare an interest as having been a university teacher for the past 41 years. I rarely speak on issues of higher education in this House but I felt moved to do so because I think that this policy is spectacularly misconceived. It cuts entirely across the lifetime learning agenda, a good deal of which takes in things such as certificates and diplomas, which will be put at an acute...

UK Borders Bill (16 Oct 2007)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, my name is on the amendment and I should like to say a word or two in support of it. I agree with the points made by my noble friend Lord Judd. I, too, am a member of the JCHR and support the position of that committee on this issue. There are two or three other reasons that I would like to mention briefly. First, I am not in favour of extending the discretionary powers of...

House of Lords: Reform (12 Mar 2007)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I came into this House in 1992, having spent some two or three years prior to the election in that year working with the then right honourable Neil Kinnock, the former leader of the Labour Party, on aspects of constitutional reform. I came into this House after the election firmly convinced of the need for it to move, over time, to being a wholly elected Chamber. I still hold to...

Prevention of Terrorism Act 2005 (Continuance in force of sections 1 to 9) Order 2007 (5 Mar 2007)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I hope to be brief. I am a member of the Joint Committee on Human Rights, and I support all the recommendations made in the report published yesterday, but I do not want to talk about any of those here. I have four other points. I was one of the rebels on this side of the House two years ago in the fraught circumstances that the noble and learned Lord, Lord Lloyd, talked about. My...

Forced Marriage (Civil Protection) Bill [HL] (26 Jan 2007)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, I strongly support this Bill, and I, too, pay tribute to the noble Lord, Lord Lester, for devising it. It is a very sophisticated mechanism to deal with a very significant evil. I will talk about two things: first, the arguments that might be proposed from cultural communities and groups against the Bill, and secondly, a little about coercion, in Clause 2, because the definition of...

Education and Inspections Bill (18 Jul 2006)

Lord Plant of Highfield: I, too, am a member of the Joint Committee on Human Rights and my name is on the amendment of the noble Lord, Lord Judd. I will speak briefly in support of what he said. I do not doubt the Government's commitment to ensuring that the protections for academy pupils are not lower than those for pupils in maintained schools. Given that commitment, the crux of the question is whether the funding...

Prevention of Terrorism Act 2005 (Continuance in force of sections 1 to 9) Order 2006 (15 Feb 2006)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, although critical of control orders during the debates on the Bill last year, I am not opposed to them in principle, as I said in my Second Reading speech then. They are potentially a constructive way of dealing with a problem where the Government are caught between the Belmarsh judgment, the difficulty or impossibility of deportation because of the threat of death or torture and...

Freedom of Speech (9 Feb 2006)

Lord Plant of Highfield: My Lords, this is an important debate. There is no doubt that freedom of speech and liberal democracy more generally are under attack from various kinds of fundamentalisms in the modern world. In that context, we need to be clear about the moral basis for liberal democracy and the place of freedom of speech in it. In the view of some critics of liberal democracy, that immediately puts...


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