Monday, October 25, 2010
Fast and furious
One thing which strikes me as I study the law is the amazing increase in the number of laws and regulations. However even more than this, I am amazed by the overall fast and furious pace of change in the entire legal system. I can only imagine what it must have been like to study the law back in the early eighties as opposed to now. To be sure, common law traces its roots back hundreds of years but without a doubt the last thirty years has seen an exponential growth in the legal web which ensnares us. Not only does statute after statute fly out of the halls of parliament, but the amount of delegated legislation expands so rapidly one needs to be a specialist to keep up. Sadly it seems to me that the expanding use of laws and regulations pushes personal freedom ever further and further into a small corner. As parliaments feel the need to act to solve all of the woes of humanity, individuals seem to slowly but surely lose their freedom to act. Power is continually funneled down from the omnipotent lawmaking body into the hands of ministries, bureaucrats and unelected officials, many of whom have the power to act arbitrarily. What does the future hold if we keep up at this pace? Will there be anything left which is not legistlated or prescribed?