An article on what Jeremy Corbyn should do if he becomes Labour leader:
“… The whip is part of the machinery of an outdated party politics that can no longer galvanise voters. It evolved in the 18th century, with the office of the chief whip formally coming into existence in the early 19th, and should be consigned to this era when deference and obedience were considered virtues. It is profoundly undemocratic. MPs are elected to represent their constituents. They cannot do this if, once in parliament, they instead have to bow down in front of their party’s leadership.
Mainstream parties have been gradually losing support in part because they appear to be stuffed with people more interested in their team winning then serving the country. The more the whip disempowers individual MPs, the weaker the party looks collectively. Hence the whole will be much stronger if it exerts less control over its parts, enabling members to show their individual strengths, troublesome though they may sometimes be. …
… Take the whip away and Westminster could become a very different place. It would strike a blow against its excessively adversarial ways of working, the two sides of a divided house braying at each other across the floor. This is a hangover from the already obsolete two-party system. End the whip and it would become more natural for some MPs of different parties to vote together, some against each other, purely on the merits of the policy. It would make it less common for parties to oppose a policy simply as a way of trying to draw blood, because being defeated would no longer represent a major rebellion: you can hardly rebel when no one is commanding you to obey. …”