I am, it seems, knee deep in constitutions, Federal, State, Regional and Local Party, under fire for all corners merely for having the audacity to note that there are such things, and that they need to be applied. Due process, I think to myself, just a concept to be ignored as it suits, or something that underpins the notion of liberalism?
Naturally, I can't go into detail, but it is enough to say that being the guardian of the constitutional word is not a comfortable place to be, especially when you're on your own, worse still when you're an increasingly unwilling bureaucrat. But you know something, in a world of shoddy process, of short cuts and administrative ineptitude, somebody has to be willing to be lashed to the wheel of the good ship Liberal Bureaucrat, if only to find out what happens.
Heavens, it would be so much easier to say to people, "Yes, why don't you do that. After all, what's the worst that could happen?". The problem is, I have a nasty feeling that I know what happens when people focus on outcomes without thinking about the means of getting from A to B.
Now I'm not the sort of person who thinks that these things are there to prevent people from doing things, quite the opposite - I've always seen constitutions as a means of enabling people to get things done, to protect the innocent. They are remarkably even-handed creations, for the most part, balancing the rights of individuals with those of the wider community, be it Liberal Democrats, Rotarians or heritage railway enthusiasts. Better still, they are reassuringly liberal, if they're well written. They provide checks on executive power, and on those seeking to overthrow the established order.
So, for any of you out there who think that constitutions are to be circumvented, or ignored, or even subverted, please think again. Such behaviour may bring short-term advantage, but it tends to backfire in the end... and I'm prepared to do what is right, not necessarily what is easy...