The honours system should now be obsolete. It is divisive, archaic and embarrassing, and some of the recipients should know better than to accept them.
People such as David Bowie et al should be commended for their courage to say no to this relic of the past.
In his memoirs, the former Tory prime minister John Major said he spent more time taking calls from people who wanted a gong than he did dealing with matters of state. The Prime Minister talks about getting rid of the word "empire" but allows the system to be used for tokenism, nepotism, appeasement, and for employers to say goodbye to employees who have overstayed their welcome.
A large and growing number of us in the Labour party are persistently pressing Tony Blair to scrap this system in the name of socialism and common sense.
It is to be hoped that Labour's representation committee will pursue this with some vigour in its future work.
Springfield Green Essex