It would be good to think that the corruption, sleaze and downright dishonesty that is freely oozing out of the Mother of Parliaments is a result of contemporary secularism but that is not true, European Christian Democrats could not only give our MPs and Peers a run for their money but win hands down.
What I do find worrying, and is perhaps derived from secularism, is the constant refrain of "it was within the rules". It is as if rights and obligations spring from the rule book rather than from another authority. Christianity, of course, talks about a morality that springs from something above and beyond the rule book. For a Christian, right and wrong come from God, and is written in the very nature of mankind, it might well be that original sin obscures man's ability to discern right or wrong but right and wrong are objective realities.
The problems our Parliamentarians face are the same as strike at the heart of British society as a whole: too much trust in the rule book and no trust in our own ability to make right decisions. Again and again from abortion to minding the gap on railway trains and other health and safety legislation the state feels obliged to step in and remind us not only of the rules but reinforces the ultra-pessimistic view of human nature. Today the lives of every British citizen is dominated by petty legislation. His moral imagination is stunted and he relies continually on the state not only to govern his behaviour but even his thinking. The state invades and hopes to remake his thinking about such basic concepts of family structures, human sexuality, even the beginnings and end of life. Right and wrong are imposed. The knock on effects are that we lose our imagination to do good in society. It makes us assume that the state, rather than us, are responsible for the care of the marginalised, of the elderly, the socially marginalised, the poor.
The alternative is of course equally frightening, there is an American blogger at the moment, recently married whose wife had a difficult pregnancy, the hospital bills threaten to reduce him to penury.