It took the whole electorate but we separated the government of the country from self-identification with the state. Government has returned to being powerful but not permanent. We even have a Department of Education again. And although a particular theory of history as being the product of interacting and impersonal forces rather than the actions of individuals has suffered a blow, we are rid of some remarkably pernicious individuals' influences on our fortunes. Our objective economic circumstances have not changed but the people dealing with them at government level are competent and, crucially, willing to be advised by the pragmatic and technically skilled.
Various assaults on our claims to pass through our lives privately, pursuing our idiosyncratic interests, are being abandoned and dismantled. Our data will not be wiped from the half-completed state and 'lost' data bases, but at least there is an end to any further collection, and what are held are held sufficiently incompetently for there to be a real expectation of the whole shebang falling into disuse.
The Commons has been offered a lifting of one of the greatest powers over its whipped membership - the threat of forcing every member to face re-election unless they do as the Executive tell them to do - and while they are having a passing difficulty in understanding this they will get the idea eventually.
We are to have an elected second chamber. Angels would like to see the entire current Lords required to stand for election, alongside any new candidates but, short of that, the withering away of the placemen and troughing party hacks will have to do; at least a start will have been made. Perhaps the current House of Lords could be bodily removed to a purpose-built heritage museum and the elected Senate installed in Westminster.
The bringing into use of all the machinery of devolved government, particularly between Scotland's parliament and the federal Westminster parliament left even Alex Salmond looking gob-smacked. Ending the use of Scotland as a Labour party Westminster support system will be immensely beneficial in both countries, and for the United Kingdom as a whole. Damaging to the Labour party, certainly, but do we care?
Best of all, the progressive alliance that we all knew existed in our country has turned out to be a centre right progressive alliance - our old, dear friend One Nation Conservatism survived and has been found thriving, welcomed back by over 60% of us. The Labour party's renewal will be welcome too, and interesting, once the brace of Milibands and the lowering threat of unenlightened trade unionism has been seen off. Some of Angels' best friends are social democrats and there are many examples of egalitarian and socially inclusive governance the electorate may prefer when it is able to be offered by a reformed and democratised Labour party.
Normal service has been resumed.
Patten, the last life peer to Chair the BBC
1 hour ago