Europeian Politics

Few Fireworks in First Question Time

The government critics in the Senate took their first stab at Question Time this week, and the results were underwhelming. The proceedings were mainly marked by the absence of culture minister James Hanover, foreign minister Earth22, and interior minister Abbey Anumia. Other than that, some of the responses were lackluster and not detail-specific, with the possible exception of President Sopo's detailed accounting of his first week in office. Additionally, the so-called "critics" failed to follow up or dig deeper. In some cases, the opening questions themselves failed to deliver, but if you missed it, or fell asleep during it, here's the highlights:

Information minister Hyanygo, new to the post, has a rather detailed plan to provide a steady flow of articles to the Europeian Brodcasting Corporation, which has seen a slight downturn as of late.

President Sopo provided a very detailed accounting of his first week in office, which seems to have been slightly hampered due to the LoAs of his Ministers and the pornspams across NationStates. He was frank about these issues and is looking to resolve them in the coming weeks.

Vice President HEM has spent much of the week putting the Civil Service Officium in order by his own account, and plans to bring it to life in the coming week. He also stands by his decisions regarding convicted criminal Seymour, proclaiming Europeia "a land of second chances".

Integration minister Ogastein backs the Citizen Integration Act recently passed by the Senate and welcomes the change as a new direction for the Ministry. Little specifics were asked for or provided about actual Welfare policy.

Grand Admiral karthikking appears to be much in the same boat as HEM, getting his Navy in order and ready for the rest of the term. Oliver asked for a private follow-up on the Grand Admiral's answer, as little specifics could be provided with breaching security.

As previously stated, the ministers of culture, foreign affairs, and interior are on Leave of Absence (LoA), with two of the three coming back this coming week. Whether it was the LoAs, some slack for the first time of the term, or the Senate just being unsure of itself, I'd invite these critics to settle into their roles as Opposition and more vigorously question the ministers at the next given opportunity. While we don't want a Senate pitted firmly against the Executive, we should also have accountability, otherwise this new idea of Opposition is just a sideshow and the Senate has better ways to expend its energy.

It is yet to be seen how effective the Cabinet will be this term, and how effective the Senate will be in motivating the Cabinet, but if we can be sure of one thing, it's that this term is like any other and may need a push for activity from the government.

Writer : McEntire
Edited by : Hyanygo
 

Sopo

former mayor of arnhelm
Forum Administrator
Honoured Citizen
Citizen
A very nice piece. Thank you.
 

Klatonia

Busy feasting on the blood of your best
Citizen
While I agree that Question Time has been relatively quiet, I am perplexed at the insinuation that it is the only way to keep the Executive accountable. It is not. Like it or not, the Senate does not need to confine itself to a role of Westminster-Style Opposition, simply because these Oppositions are POWERLESS. They can only ask questions. The Europeian Senate can legislate his agenda, and this fact is too often swept under the rug when the balance of power is discussed.

This articifial view of an Executive and a Legislative being tied by a Majority-Minority relationship is not just wrong, it's confusing.

It's a good article, but it also shows how deep the idea of an Opposition whose job it is to use mainly Question Time to hold the Executive accountable has permated the political sphere. The idea that critics are assigned to specific roles is also taking root, while I still believe Senators should be versatile and able to speak and think on a broad range of issues. How else could they legitimately and effectively legislate on Navy matters one day and the Council's existence on the next?

NO, Question Time is a MEAN, not a GOAL. And it is but one of many measures I, as Senator, intend to use in order to counsel the Administration in its choices, monitor the progression of actions during the events, and hold it accountable once the actions are done.
 

Klatonia

Busy feasting on the blood of your best
Citizen
Seeing, who's leading, I thought we could rename it the Sexy City Council.
 

McEntire

Deputy Minister
Citizen
Klat, I understand what you're saying, I'm just saying that, barring removing Ministers, Question Time seems to be the most obviously accessible time to keep the government accountable and I expected more. If that's what we've set out to do as a region and as a Senate, let's experiment, not dabble.

Not that I agree with it, but I'm just saying if you're going to do something, do it, otherwise we're all just wasting our time. Use whatever "tools" you need to use, but just do something meaningful. That's what I want to see, that's what the first Question Time didn't provide, and it really is that simple.

Also, Sexy City Council? That's not even wordplay! :p
 

Klatonia

Busy feasting on the blood of your best
Citizen
Klat, I understand what you're saying, I'm just saying that, barring removing Ministers, Question Time seems to be the most obviously accessible time to keep the government accountable and I expected more. If that's what we've set out to do as a region and as a Senate, let's experiment, not dabble.

Not that I agree with it, but I'm just saying if you're going to do something, do it, otherwise we're all just wasting our time. Use whatever "tools" you need to use, but just do something meaningful. That's what I want to see, that's what the first Question Time didn't provide, and it really is that simple.

Also, Sexy City Council? That's not even wordplay! :p
I understand and I mostly agree. I just don't like the emphasis put on the subordinate, begging, powerless role of opposition. Legislation is the best tool - once reflection is done and the questions were asked. I agree with your disappointment, but it's not the end of the story.
 
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