The political discourse needs more ‘flying flamingos’

close tovideo Boris Johnson calls for a new election after the loss of a British EU exit vote

Brexit battle in the ongoing Parliament; Greg Palkot reports from London.

I don’t claim to be an expert on parliamentary procedure and precedence in the British House of Commons. But I can say one thing: the Congress would certainly be a hell of a lot more fun, if the US adopted some of Parliament’s traditions here.

Uproar in Parliament commanded global headlines of the past few weeks, as it wrestles with Brexit – the biggest existential threat to the United Kingdom since the second world war.

The British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson struggled with other conservatives and even banned a few from the Parliament, including Winston s Churchill grandson. Retirement of Speaker Jon Bercow, has internet a sensation. I mean, could you imagine House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has been bickering with their relatives the way Bercow?

You have to wonder if Pelosi might be verbally preached a heckling backbencher burn with a rhetorical projectile worthy of Bercow.

“I’m not in the least interested in your pettifogging objections went!”, mocked Bercow from the speaker to the chairmanship of a member of Parliament (MP). “I don’t give a flying flamingo.”

To the uninitiated, “went pettifogging” is the law of the undue emphasis on picayune details. And for the record, the flamingos usually only fly at night. You can’t even imagine Senate majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told the Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), he does not” give a flying flamingo” about his views on the legislation. That is to say, Schumer has shame of the exclamation“! Shame on him!” the other day in reference to McConnell. This came after McConnell, a democratic press conference on gun violence Dayton, OH mayor Nan Whaley (D) as “theatrics.”

However, the democratic party of his presidential rivals say that the first candidate will claim to the shipping of one of their rivals with the “flying Flamingos” retort at the next debate, the nomination by acclamation.

The British House of Commons, as in most parliamentary assemblies throughout the world, have a blackjack. The Mace is essentially a physical symbol of the power of each legislative body. In ancient Rome, the Mace is a battle weapon. In the case of the UK, the mace is a five-foot rod is of silver, adorned with roses and stems winding around a crown at the top. If you believe the British mace goes back to king Charles II and the 17th century. It is a dramatic moment, at the end of last year was when an MP stole the Mace from his ancestral place in the chamber in an act of protest, and locks the output.

“To! Lay back it! No, No, No!” urged Bercow.

The house of representatives has also held a Mace, in the office of Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving. It is almost bound to four meters high and with silver strands. Only the house-officers always have the Mace handle, and then, with white gloves, to protect their integrity. House officials always have the Mace escort in the Estrade, in the chamber, when the body is met with every day. But it is not present it is unusual for the house, the Mace in front of a member, if you from the series. The last known example came in 1994. House officials almost the cudgel was swinging in front of Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) – after a verbal confrontation on the ground.

You have to wonder whether a house member thought this might be about, tried, deprived of the mace, the way the Labour Deputy a few months ago. It might not do much for the parliamentary decorum. But it would certainly stir a fuss in Congress.

Nothing against the Mace in the house of representatives. But the house may wish to consider upping your Mace game and follow the piston to the projection of two Canadian armed. We are not talking about a Mace in Ottawa. Try, Iqaluit, Nunavut, the northernmost territory in Canada, and Edmonton, the capital of the province of Alberta.

The club for the legislature in Nunavut has a typical “crown” at the top, to the attention of the British monarch, a two-and-a-quarter-carats-reminiscent of diamond, and even a badge of a fleur-de-lis. But the body of the lobe is covered with narwalstoßzahn, protrude from the sides, like a weapon directly from “Game of Thrones”.

The original mace in Alberta was a real piece of work – and an afterthought. If Alberta a province in 1905, was the Assembly was realized, it was missing piston. To build so they scrambled together, with a homemade Mace. Officials together with duct tape, a plumbing tube, brass-buttons, which consists of a bed, the handle of a shaving-mug, and to top it all off, the round float from a toilet tank. Alberta used the mace for decades.

But without question, the fascinating tradition in the British Parliament and the Congress on the role of the Black rod should be able to.

Yes. It is a civil servant from the House of Lords, the Black rod is actually called.

The Black Rod sounds like an arch villain of “The Avengers.” Think of the Green Goblin or the Red Skull. Maybe Natasha Romanov get kind of involved. After all, she is the Black widow.

Nevertheless, the Black rod is a type of “usher”, the dresses, like the sign on a bottle of Johnnie Walker scotch. A kind of British version of Colonel Sanders. The Black rod is wearing, surprise, a bar. If the Parliament is in session, MP’s deliberately slam the door in the face of Black Rod. He or she knocks three times on the door to Parliament for approval. MP is the door shut, to symbolize the independence of Parliament from the Monarch.

And if the Parliament does not meet, the Black bar will accompany you in the chamber, the speaker of the chamber. Sarah Clarke is currently considered to be the Black rod. Bercow has not first Clarke from the chamber, this time to accompany, in view of the dispute in the Parliament, and the confusion about Brexit. But after burning a few derogatory comments from the speaker in the chair, Bercow from Parliament, finally, was ready for a couple of weeks.

No one could imagine, a Black rod in the US-house-accompanied Pelosi everywhere.

For the record, when Congress ends its session, the house and Senate tolerate die “sine.” This is Latin for “without a date in the future.” It is pronounced “sigh-needy.” If the house adjourns, as it is now the case, it’s called the “agreement.” This is in order. It is just as hard to pronounce as sine die.


The adoption of a few customs from other parliamentary systems would surely be the Congress a little more fascinating. Debate in the house and Senate is sometimes Andes a little stale. The dial things up a notch or two in the Bercow model would at least make it more amusing.

And if you don’t I give the suggestions, not a flying flamingo.

Follow us

Don't be shy, get in touch. We love meeting interesting people and making new friends.

Most popular