A guest post by Hubert Huzzah
If it had only been Jeremy Corbyn calling for Theresa May to resign it would have been merely politicking. But it was not only Corbyn. Steve Hilton, former director of strategy for David Cameron, and director of Political Technology Startup Crowdpac also tweeted that:“Theresa May responsible for security failures of London Bridge, Manchester, Westminster Bridge. Should be resigning not seeking re-election”. The underlying problem for Theresa May is that Steve Hilton is coming from a Right Wing, Big Data, Analytics driven perspective while Corbyn is approaching from a Mass Membership Organisation perspective. Both are concluding the same thing: Theresa May is not fit for purpose. Theresa May should resign. Had it been either Corbyn or Hilton it could be dismissed as mere politicking. Corbyn disparaging May for Labour Party political reasons; Hilton disparaging May for Conservative Party political reasons. But it is both. If it were just Hilton then the problem could be fixed by simply having May resign and having someone else step into her position. She would simply be a replaceable cog in a well oiled machine. If it were just Corbyn then she would simply be replaced and come back at some later time as a renewable cog in a well oiled machine. The call for the resignation of May is not simply a judgement on her but on her entire Party and their ideology. Which sounds a sweeping and generalised statement. Yet the truth is a verdict delivered from both Mass Membership and Big Data: the Tory Party has failed. In systems design there are two, broad, kinds of systems: fault tolerant and fail fast. Fault tolerant systems can continue operating as intended in the event of the failure of one or more component parts. Where operating quality decreases, the decrease is proportional to the severity of the failure. Which is exactly the kind of system the Tory Party could be if the call to resign was isolated to the Left or the Right. But the call is not. A fail fast system is designed to cease normal operation rather continue flawed processes. Checking the system’s continuously so any failures can be detected early. A fail-fast system passes responsibility for handling error, but not detecting it, to the next-highest level of the system. Democracy fails fast and tells you how it failed and that is what is happening right now with the Tory Party. Both Corbyn and Hilton have indicated that the Leader of the Tory Party – Theresa May – has failed to deliver. Increasingly it is clear that she failed to deliver as Home Secretary in terms of Domestic Policy and as Prime Minister in terms of Foreign Policy. These failures were tolerated by her own party for too long. Which led to a Party for which the Member Of Parliament was simply a Bloc Vote for the Cabinet. Ranging from the farcical retrospective legislation of, former leader, Ian Duncan Smith to the desire for a return to ex post facto law making. The doctrine of parliamentary sovereignty permits ex post facto lawmaking but, for example, retrospective criminal laws are prohibited by Article 7 of the European Convention on Human Rights. In order to function as a fault tolerant ruling party, the Human Rights Act, and the connection the the European Convention on Human Rights has to be ended. It is not about the European Union but about the Tory Party failing to realise that Democracy is fault tolerant of Democracy not of individual Parties. Individual Parties must fail and fail fast. Which is currently what the Tory Party is seeking to avoid: the propagation of failure throughout the entire Party. The call for Theresa May to resign could be dismissed as politics, if it had come from a single direction – Left or Right – but not when it comes from two different direction. In particular, both sources of the call to resign are based, firmly in Big Data. The knee jerk reaction of Theresa May is to call for the ending of encryption on the Internet. This would end the security of banking, promote the kind of Ransomware that attacked the NHS – whose source might well be a State Intelligence Agency – and provides zero protection against any kind of conspiracy. The model of what would happen if encryption were to be removed from the Internet is the experience of US Air Travellers, where, since 2003, all locked baggage travelling within, or transiting through, the United States of America must be equipped with Travelsentry locks. Travelsentry Locks are designed to allow anyone with a widely held master key to open them. Which is identical to giving back door entry to encryption. Travel to the United States allows the outsourced Contractors at the Transportation Security Administration to open any bag. The result has been a huge, widely investigated, rise in thefts from baggage. Removing encryption from the Internet would only work if the Tory Party were capable of managing everything on the Internet. In short, it is an attempt to bring the UK under the management of the Tory Party. The call for the resignation of May is not simply a reflection on a single person. The Team around May includes Fiona Hill, Nick Timothy, Lynton Crosby, Jim Messina, Tom Edmonds, Craig Elder and John Godfrey which barely scratches the surface of the system of interlinking advisors necessary to run a Tory Campaign. Unlike Labour where there is a functioning Party Democracy, the Tories continue to have the kind of outdated Management by Patronage that drove the early Industrial Revolution yet stalled and failed by the time of the Wall Street Crash. Calling for May would oblige someone to replace her. Which would be the ideal thing to happen if the Tory Party was not dysfunctional. In 2016 there was a Leadership Election in the Tory Party. Theresa May emerged as Leader through a series of attritions between Tuesday , July 5 and Monday , July 11. In essence, Liam Fox and Michael Gove were eliminated as they failed to gain sufficient votes and Andrea Leadsom and Stephen Crabb withdrew. Theresa May gathered Gavin Williamson – later appointed Chief Whip – together with a small group of MPs, including Julian Smith, Kris Hopkins, Simon Kirby, Karen Bradley and George Hollingbery. This was, in effect, the management team that took over the Tory Party. A judgement of resign from both the Left and Right of politics is also a judgement on those MPs. It is also a judgement on Crabb and Fox who endorsed May. Indeed, the call to resign is not simply politics but a judgement on the entire process of dressing up patronage as Democracy. Without realising it, the Tories set up the conditions for the fast failure of the Party under May. In addition to the taint of the Leadership Election leaving the Tory Party united behind a Home Secretary whose record is increasingly and tragically exposed as beneath competence and pathologically flawed there is a record of increasing incompetence that is open to criminal prosecution. Craig Mackinlay is one prospective MP whose behaviour in the 2015 Election has given the Crown Prosection Service sufficient cause to believe they can successfully prosecute him along with Party Workers. The number of MPs, for whom the Crown Prosecution Service declined to prosecute, and their support workers ranks in the dozens. The Party is not suffering from a single bad apple but systemic failure. Ian Duncan Smith, admitted that the removal of Control Orders from the Home Office repertoire made control of potential Terrorism far harder than under the previous Labour Government. This is one example of how far mediocre managers had been promoted to their level of incompetence within the Tory Party. The systematic in fighting from the Bruges Group onwards that led to the Referendum in 2015 exemplified the kind of fault tolerance that allowed the Tory Party to continue as an organisation. Indeed the Electoral Fraud allegations of 2015 onwards can be dismissed as not being criminal – but only if there is an acceptance that it was due to incompetence. Systematic incompetence on such a large scale begs the question of who that serves. Which again points to the failure of the Tory Party as a viable political organisation. The multiple calls for May to resign beg the question: who will replace her. Clearly those people most closely aligned to her “election unopposed” in 2016 cannot claim to be better leaders otherwise they would have stood against her. Similarly, those who stood against her lost and that is pivotal in the ideology of the Tory Party. Losers do not simply go away to lick their wounds, they are crushed. Simply by looking at two parts of the last year – without even considering Pro-Remain Tory MPs – it becomes clear that the only way for any Tory, in any Constituency, to claim to be electable as an MP is for them to demonstrate that they are electable as Prime Minister. For the Tory Party – who have made so much noise about the electability of Corbyn, the question that needs to be asked of every Conservative Party Candidate is: are you personally electable enough to be Prime Minister. Which is the point of failure for the Tory Party: there can be no longer any secret deals made in the Party. The Internet has provided the Electorate with a model for scrutiny of Politicians and Political Parties. The Tory Party does not stand up to scrutiny. In 2010 with a magically, shiny, new digital strategy the Tory Party could get elected because of the novelty factor. By 2011, they product tested Referenda as a means to give the appearances of mass participation in decision making. At the same time the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act 2011 instituted a Boundary Review that was intended to radically reduce the number of MPs and the European Union Act 2011 made Referenda necessary for all changes in relationships to Europe. By 2015, the perpetual nudging and the capacity to dispose of the Liberal Democratic Party a Coalition Junior Partners allowed the Torys to be re-elected on the basis of being given a mandate. Which created the perception that the Tories are the natural party of government returned to their natural place. The European Union Referendum Act 2015 followed by the 2016 European Membership Referendum should have been the transition of British Politics to a perpetual Tory Government with Perpetual Austerity. However, the 2010 digital strategy did something unexpected. The Tory Party had always been able to be fault tolerant within the party and impose fast failure onto society. The digital election strategy began opening up political parties to radical scrutiny. Now the failing of how parties work became part of the daily political skirmish. The 2016 Referendum simply opened up the failures of the Tory Party to scrutiny. Regardless of how anybody voted, it became clear that the Tory objective in having a Referendum was simply to impose the Tory Policy on Europe onto both the UK and the EU. The vote itself was intended to be a meaningless formality. A choice between Remain and Leave. Choices are something that gets done in a talent show. They are not really democratic and calling them democratic undermines the real decisions and deliberations of democracy. The 2016 Referendum was about transforming decision making into choices. Future Government would simply give the Electorate a list of choices, on a menu, and the Electorate would choose. In essence, transforming all future Government into a fault tolerant machine for delivering policy objectives to Party Donors. Everything would become a variation on the Tory 2016 Leadership Election. Which exposes the whole Tory Party to a simple problem. If Theresa May should resign then, so too, her whole party should resign. It really is not negotiable. Like it , or not, Democracy is a fail fast system and imposes fast failure onto Parties within that system. The Tory Party drifted along for decades being tolerant of its own faults and resisting the obviously moribund nature of the Party. Democracy has caught up.
Unless there is a Tory who can become Party Leader before the Election, there is no longer any rational cause to vote for any Tory MP. Theresa May should not have called an Election and her party was incompetent to allow her to do so. The shadow of electoral fraud has not vanished and the Party is systematically split on Europe; and, increasingly, the only way to for the Tories to retain power is to become an Authoritarian, Aristocratic Oligarchy.Which, historically, never went down that well.