Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Nigeria, Britain – if you've been following the news from these countries in the last few months, you've probably also been following updates on some pretty serious pro-democracy organising. It is perhaps this apparently voracious appetite for democratic participation that the average person has that the UK government is hoping to capitalise on with its Red Tape Challenge project.So quoth Zohra Moosa, women's rights adviser at ActionAid UK. So she's in favour?
Well, only when it goes so far, and no further:
In addition to the regulations on hallmarking, weights and measures and "trading with the enemy" (really), which all sit under the category of "retail challenge", the Equality Act has also been identified for this "red-tape cutting" under the category of "general regulations".NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!
The five other contenders in this category similarly relate to people's wellbeing and the law and are considered to apply to all sectors. But the approach taken towards the Equality Act is slightly different to all the others. Instead of referring to specific regulations on how the act is implemented, Red Tape Challenge poses the consultation questions exclusively about the act itself.OMG!! Disaster!!!!
This distinction between regulation and act is important. What would it mean if the answer to the very first Red Tape Challenge question, "Should they be scrapped altogether?", is an overwhelming "yes"?It'd mean a hell of a lot of businesses would suddenly find themselves free of stifling and pointless regulation. It'd mean that some small limited amount of sanity reigned in the world of the public sector. It'd mean that, for once, 'the people have spoken!' would be more than just a phrase.
Oh, and it'd mean that people like you wouldn't have a cozy sinecure for life.
What's not to like?