A really good discussion/explanation of the British political system.

I know quite a lot of people here have a pretty skewed or incomplete view of how Britain’s government works, so I thought some people here might find this enlightening.


It also has a bunch of posts on what the Queen’s purpose actually is and why the UK system has a lot more accountability than the US one. Also on why Britain’s streets are like they are. Reading a couple of accounts of British people in the US, I would get totally lost trying to get around in a US city.

edit; also London is stupid.

I know. It’s nearly as bad as Stavanger or Oslo.

We’ve got it much worse in Norway: We’ve even got a constitution that quite clearly states that we’re to have a king and state religion and that all those who serve the crown have to be Christian and that he, that is, the King, is to personally appoint who he wants to sit in his royal council and that that council is to function as the Government of Norway. It’s all a fad now of course and we’ve violated it and pretty much copied you Britons, except, our cities are much, much worse.

It even used to have a part about Jews not being allowed within the Kingdom.

PS. This constitution was written in 1814.

I like the Empire we had in Brazil better, it was far simpler. The country was ruled by three powers, the belated Executive, Legislative and Judicial. But there was a fourth one, called the “Moderator” power. It had only one member, the Emperor.

The Executive, Legislative and Judicial houses couldn’t do anything without explicit permission from the Moderator power. In addition to that, the Moderator powers could do anything that the three other powers could. Which was redundant for at least one of the three powers, since the Emperor was also the head of the Executive (go on and say WTF).

This system avoids the polictical complexity of the British one in a very efficient manner. If they followed our example, that map the guys drew at Something Awful would have only one division instead of a few hundreds.

What deranged city planner designed this thing? O_o

hay you guys don’t drive on the right side of the road :maho:

This is only a WTF until you look closely and by parts. It allows you to go anywhere within the circle quickier than if you had to drive only over the rim as you see everywhere else. It even allows you to go back to the same street from which you came without having to go a full round’ cross the circle.

The real messy one is in Paris. I forgot the name of the place so I can’t google for it, but think of it: unlike this one, you can only go over the rim, but there’s no law, sign nor rule saying whether you should go clockwise or counterclockwise once you get in. Also, the lane is pretty larger - common sense says it’d help, but it actually makes the traffic messier in this case. When you watch it for a few minutes you see that people do brownian movement rather than circle around it.

That’s indeed a very interesting read. My english teacher at my institute always talked about the insane road systems and the like, so I’ll try to show this to her. If you’ve ever been in Chichester: Is it true that the streets are so circular that there are no actual street corners? And as a result, no way of telling when a street ends and another begins?

Also, I recomend reading “How to be an Alien” by George Mikes for an outsider’s inside view of this mess. I don’t know how accurate it is, but it’s just hilarious:

The trouble with tea is that originally it was quite a good drink. So a group of the most eminent British scientists put their heads together, and made complicated biological experiments to find a way of spoiling it.

To the eternal glory of British science their labour bore fruit. They suggested that if you do not drink it clear, or with lemon or rum and sugar, but pour a few drops of cold milk into it, and no sugar at all, the desired object is achieved. Once this refreshing, aromatic, oriental beverage was successfully transformed into colourless and tasteless gargling-water, it suddenly became the national drink of Great Britain and Ireland - still retaining, indeed usurping, the high-sounding title of tea.

An English town is a vast conspiracy to mislead foreigners.

Arc de Triomph


Triomphe ;).
The video is sublime. That Arc’s roundabout “Place de l’Etoile” is legendary for its traffic accidents.