FROM my office in the upper committee corridor of the House of Commons, I can hear a screeching. The door to the roof of the Commons is open because it’s a bit hot in here, so I can hear the yelling, but not the actual words.
It’s coming from the resident protest on Parliament Square, of course, and you have to wonder how they can spare all the time to shout abuse at MPs and everyone else who comes in and out of the palace. For all the noise they make, no-one can make out a single word that they say. They’re very angry, and they’re very loud (although when you’re inside the building, you don’t even know they’re there) but a more pointless waste of time I cannot imagine.
I’m not even sure what they’re protesting about today. It’s probably Iraq. Or maybe ID cards. Or 42 days. Or the weather, maybe, who knows? But while this particular protest has had absolutely no effect whatsoever on the opinions or actions of MPs, it has had an effect on the comfort of the thousands of tourists whose enjoyment of Parliament Square and the Houses of Parliament has been tarnished by the hectoring, bullying tone of these stout defenders of liberty.