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A Dissident’s Guide to the Constitution: Episode 2 — Common Law

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Published on 21 Apr 2021 / In News and Politics

Why does English have the Norman French word “legal” as well as the Anglo-Saxon word “lawful”? Is the law the Crown’s or ours? Is “jury nullification” the most hazardous phrase to utter near a courthouse?

Alex Thomson discusses with David Scott and Mike Robinson how the stirring phrase “the common law” has been understood down the ages, and whether the legal and political fraternity is right to hold as an article of faith that common law is the most inferior of the sources of law. Where does society’s conscience come into it? Are the Continental philosophers right to accuse English and Scots law of being unknowable because we have no single text that calls the Crown into being or criminalises theft or murder?

Join us to find out why state bodies like to masquerade as The People when prosecuting; why juries are being curtailed and abolished step by step; whether it is true that a freeman can individually say he does not consent to statutes; and what it was that got former Supreme Court Justice Lord Jonathan Sumption so riled in the week when this episode was recorded that he said “I reject that claim” in a lecture to Cambridge Law Faculty.

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