Presentation on theme: "The Evolution of the British State By: Nicholas Berrey Marie Oldums Alexis Bandin Stephanie Payne."— Presentation transcript:
The Evolution of the British State By: Nicholas Berrey Marie Oldums Alexis Bandin Stephanie Payne
Learning Goals 1.To understand the events that demonstrate the gradual shift towards popular democracy in the British state. 2.To be able to understand and analyze the key documents that fostered democracy in the British state.
Main Ideas 1.Gradualism 2.The impact of the Magna Carta 3.Strengthening of Parliament due to the Glorious Revolution 4.The impact of the Industrial Revolution on popular sovereignty 5.The Collectivist Consensus Era 6.Margaret Thatcher’s revisions during the Cold War
Gradualism and the British State Political change in Great Britain has always been characterized by its gradual nature. ▫Several centuries had to pass in order for a representative government to form, for the representative legislature to gain power, and for the British people to all gain suffrage. Gradualism established strong traditions. ▫Necessary since the country never created a written constitution. Due to gradualism, Britain has been able to manage challenges to their state one at a time. ▫Challenges Creating the nation-state Overcoming religious and class conflict Undergoing democratization Much unrest in British history has emerged relatively recently, after the collectivist consensus era. ▫Britain’s economic standing has dropped since the second half of the twentieth century. ▫ Catholic vs. Protestant clashes occurred in the late 1900s, and intolerance still exists between individuals. ▫Accurate, proportional representation of the British people in the government has lessened in recent years
The Magna Carta (0:00 - 3:27)http://youtu.be/PNvtTAgnzRo
The Magna Carta The most significant impact of the document is that it established a royal council to make decisions regarding the taxes and spending of the monarch. ▫The document consists of 63 clauses; the royal council and its causes are established in classes 55 and 61. It was the first time power was taken from the monarch and given to the people. The royal council consisted of 25 barons and was headed by the Arch Bishop of Canterbury.
Clause 55 All fines that have been given to us unjustly and against the law of the land, and all fines that we have exacted unjustly, shall be entirely remitted or the matter decided by a majority judgment of the twenty-five barons referred to below in the clause for securing the peace (§ 61) together with Stephen, archbishop of Canterbury, if he can be present, and such others as he wishes to bring with him. If the archbishop cannot be present, proceedings shall continue without him, provided that if any of the twenty-five barons has been involved in a similar suit himself, his judgment shall be set aside, and someone else chosen and sworn in his place, as a substitute for the single occasion, by the rest of the twenty-five.
Clause 61 SINCE WE HAVE GRANTED ALL THESE THINGS for God, for the better ordering of our kingdom, and to allay the discord that has arisen between us and our barons, and since we desire that they shall be enjoyed in their entirety, with lasting strength, for ever, we give and grant to the barons the following security: The barons shall elect twenty-five of their number to keep, and cause to be observed with all their might, the peace and liberties granted and confirmed to them by this charter. If we, our chief justice, our officials, or any of our servants offend in any respect against any man, or transgress any of the articles of the peace or of this security, and the offence is made known to four of the said twenty-five barons, they shall come to us - or in our absence from the kingdom to the chief justice - to declare it and claim immediate redress. If we, or in our absence abroad the chiefjustice, make no redress within forty days, reckoning from the day on which the offence was declared to us or to him, the four barons shall refer the matter to the rest of the twenty-five barons, who may distrain upon and assail us in every way possible, with the support of the whole community of the land, by seizing our castles, lands, possessions, or anything else saving only our own person and those of the queen and our children, until they have secured such redress as they have determined upon. Having secured the redress, they may then resume their normal obedience to us.
Clause 61 Continued Any man who so desires may take an oath to obey the commands of the twenty-five barons for the achievement of these ends, and to join with them in assailing us to the utmost of his power. We give public and free permission to take this oath to any man who so desires, and at no time will we prohibit any man from taking it. Indeed, we will compel any of our subjects who are unwilling to take it to swear it at our command. If-one of the twenty-five barons dies or leaves the country, or is prevented in any other way from discharging his duties, the rest of them shall choose another baron in his place, at their discretion, who shall be duly sworn in as they were. In the event of disagreement among the twenty-five barons on any matter referred to them for decision, the verdict of the majority present shall have the same validity as a unanimous verdict of the whole twenty-five, whether these were all present or some of those summoned were unwilling or unable to appear. The twenty-five barons shall swear to obey all the above articles faithfully, and shall cause them to be obeyed by others to the best of their power. We will not seek to procure from anyone, either by our own efforts or those of a third party, anything by which any part of these concessions or liberties might be revoked or diminished. Should such a thing be procured, it shall be null and void and we will at no time make use of it, either ourselves or through a third party.
Significance Clause 55 states the most significant impact of the Magna Carta; the Parliament’s right to determine the government’s spending. Clause 66 introduces the idea of an election should a baron step down, though this would be limited to the noble class. Over time, Parliament would begin to secure more and more powers from the monarch.
British Democracy M&feature=relatedhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D61uriEGsI M&feature=related
Strengthening of Parliament King Henry VIII (early 1600s) ▫Wanted to divorce his wife, but the Catholic Church wouldn’t allow it. ▫Decided to create the Anglican Church (influenced by the Protestant Reformation) so he could get his way. ▫Removed Catholic influence from British politics. A step towards secularization (the separation of church and state). British Civil War (1640s) ▫Started because of Protestant intolerance of other religions. ▫Oliver Cromwell overthrew King Charles I (who was Catholic) and his sons were forced to flee to France. Glorious Revolution (1688) ▫Charles II was restored to power, followed by his brother James. ▫No one wanted a Catholic as a monarch, so William and Mary were summoned to lead as Protestant rulers.
Roots of the Glorious Revolution IssueKing’s Favored PositionParliament’s Favored Position ConstitutionKing is above the lawKing is within the law ReligionCatholicProtestant AllyFranceHolland EnemyHollandFrance Inter-Branch ChecksRoyal right to control successionParliament can meet without a royal summons JudiciarySubject to Royal PunishmentSubject to Parliamentary Impeachment Ordinary RevenueRoyals only have authority to impose and collect taxes Parliament approval is necessary to impose or collect taxes AppropriationComplete royal control over expenditures Parliamentary audit Table courtesy of Stephen Quinn (2010)on: n.revolution n.revolution.1688 So why did religion play such a key role in strengthening the Parliament and how did the Glorious Revolution facilitate this change?
British Bill of Rights (1689) “And thereupon the said Lords Spiritual and Temporal and Commons, pursuant to their respective letters and elections, being now assembled in a full and free representative of this nation, taking into their most serious consideration the best means for attaining the ends aforesaid, do in the first place (as their ancestors in like case have usually done) for the vindicating and asserting their ancient rights and liberties declare That the pretended power of suspending the laws or the execution of laws by regal authority without consent of Parliament is illegal; That the pretended power of dispensing with laws or the execution of laws by regal authority, as it hath been assumed and exercised of late, is illegal; That the commission for erecting the late Court of Commissioners for Ecclesiastical Causes, and all other commissions and courts of like nature, are illegal and pernicious; That levying money for or to the use of the Crown by pretence of prerogative, without grant of Parliament, for longer time, or in other manner than the same is or shall be granted, is illegal; That it is the right of the subjects to petition the king, and all commitments and prosecutions for such petitioning are illegal; That the raising or keeping a standing army within the kingdom in time of peace, unless it be with consent of Parliament, is against law; That the subjects which are Protestants may have arms for their defense suitable to their conditions and as allowed by law; That election of members of Parliament ought to be free; That the freedom of speech and debates or proceedings in Parliament ought not to be impeached or questioned in any court or place out of Parliament; That excessive bail ought not to be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted; That jurors ought to be duly impaneled and returned, and jurors which pass upon men in trials for high treason ought to be freeholders; That all grants and promises of fines and forfeitures of particular persons before conviction are illegal and void; And that for redress of all grievances, and for the amending, strengthening and preserving of the laws, Parliaments ought to be held frequently.”
Strengthening of Parliament cont. British Bill of Rights ▫Essentially made the monarchy accountable to the Parliament and subject to Parliament’s laws. ▫How do these laws differ from those in our own Constitution’s Bill of Rights? Act of Settlement Regulated the succession process for the British crown. Treaty of the Union (1707) ▫Combined the English and Scottish Parliaments and based them in London. English politics have been dominating British politics as a whole ever since. Parliament during the American Revolution ▫Thomas Paine made the King out to be the tyrant abusing the colonies, but after realizing how much power came into Parliament’s hands after the Glorious Revolution, who do you think really abused the colonists?
Industrial and Suffrage Revolution Great Reform Acts of 1832 ▫The Industrial Revolution brought capitalism (and in effect, an expanded working class) to Great Britain. ▫Only 1% of the population had a voice in the government via a weak House of Commons and overbearing House of Lords. ▫The Great Reform Acts expanded the electorate by 300,000 men by lowering voting requirements. ▫Showed that Parliament was willing to change to include more people. Prime Minister becomes Head of Government (1830s) Second Reform Act (1867) ▫Added 3 million men to the electorate. ▫Expanded the powers of the House of Commons and diminished those held by the House of Lords. Emergence of Political Parties (1867) ▫Conservative National Union Appealed to working class and the aristocracy. What sort of interests could these classes have shared? ▫National Liberal Federation Appealed to the expanding middle class in Great Britain and also to those in Ireland. Introduction of the Secret Ballot (1870) Representation of the People Acts ( ) ▫All working class men could now vote. ▫All women later gained suffrage in 1928.
Call for Reform A Petition created by citizens in South Shields in response to the Great Reform Acts of 1832
Call for Reform cont. Based on the primary source, who wanted the Great Reform Act to pass the most? Did the initial Reform Act really change the electorate that much? How does this represent a key step in the shift towards popular sovereignty in Great Britain?
The Collectivist Consensus Beveridge Report: ▫The most influential document in creating the Welfare State of the United Kingdom. ▫Addressed “Five Evils”: Squalor (financial trouble), Ignorance, Want, Idleness, and Disease. ▫Eventually led to the formation of the National Health Service in 1948
Transition to Welfare State The Conservatives and Liberals supported the propositions in the Beveridge Report. The Labour Party did not support the National Health Service. They were concerned about wages of workers in the medical field. Eventually, they came to an agreement and accepted the NHS when they took power in In addition to socialized healthcare, they passed many other social policies such as the Family Allowances Act 1945, National Insurance (Industrial Injuries) Act 1946, National Insurance Act 1946, National Health Service Act 1946, Pensions (Increase) Act 1947, Landlord and Tenant (Rent Control) Act 1949, National Insurance (Industrial Injuries) Act 1948, and National Insurance Act 1949.
National Health Service The world’s fifth largest employer, with 1.7 million staff. Funded through general taxation. Four different systems, administrations, and funding for England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. Residents of each country can be treated in another. No medical bills or co-pays are ever paid for out of pocket; it all comes from taxes.
Cold War and Margaret Thatcher’s Revision of the British State In the 1980s and early 1990s, Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister and pushed for a complete free-market economy. ▫Collectivist ideals that had controlled British politics for the past few decades were rejected by the Conservative Party in power. Privatized many companies, like the British steel industry. Reduced spending on social services. Curbed the power of the unions. Reasserted Great Britain’s involvement in foreign affairs. Thatcher barely touched the National Health Service, despite her anti-socialism efforts. What does this say about the British people as a whole and their relationship with the NHS?
Cold War and Margaret Thatcher’s Revision of the British State With the emergence of the Cold War and anti-communist sentiment, support for the Labour Party slowly declined, leading to the Conservative upheaval of the government down the line. In what ways could the Red Scare in the second half of the twentieth century be linked to the downfall of the Labour Party in Great Britain?
Focus Questions - Conclusion How does gradualism separate Great Britain from other liberal democracies? How does the Magna Carta and other important documents serve as the country’s “constitution”? Describe the transition from a ruling aristocracy to a representative Parliament. What is the collectivist consensus and what parts of it survive to this day? Did the move towards popular sovereignty cause the British Empire to fade away? If so, how and why?