...a blog by Richard Flowers

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Day 3055: MPs! Get your House (of Commons) in Order!


So… the Horse Manure has hit the Pool Cleaner. The Pergola has broken the Camel's back. The Housekeepers are coming home to roost. We are ALL up the MOAT without a PADDLE.

Hard Labour Ministers have been treating their expenses like MONOPOLY MONEY (speculating to accumulate) and Conservatory grandees have been having the state of their Stately Homes improved. On the other fluffy foot, Liberal Democrats have been, ooh, letting their daughters stay in their second homes and, gasp, overdoing the cushions and, shudders, slipping their Hob-Nobs into the Trouser Press (which is NOT as rude as it sounds!).

The behaviour of Liberal MPs appears to be defensible. But by the point we've got to "defensible", we've already failed.

The mood in the country has been dialled up to "baying mob" and BLOOD is being called for. It's almost IRONIC that if someone had done something ACTUALLY condemnable then Mr Nick could have FIRED their sorry bottoms, something that Mr Frown and Mr Balloon have obviously failed to do to the very real villains in their own (Shadow) Cabinets.

Without a RITUAL DEFENESTRATION, the wrath of the public is further compounded by a sense of "they've got away with it". Any amount of repayments only fuels the idea – real or imagined – that there is plenty more left to uncover, that MPs are SOOOOO loaded with ill-gotten expenses claims that they can easily cough up the refunds.

It is all very DEPRESSING.

You can understand the CROSSNESS of lovely Sarah Teather when she cries from the heart: "What planet were MPs living on?"

Mr Saint Stephen of Fry is both RIGHT and WRONG.

He's RIGHT that this witch-hunt is being led by hypocritical journalists who are paid far more than MPs, get far more generous expenses than MPs and are widely considered vastly more venal than MPs.

(And I for one would love to see how THEIR salaries and expenses stood up to public scrutiny. Her HONESTY does stand up, but do you believe that a News24 reader should be worth half as much again as an MP? Do you REALLY? If it's a question of public funding, then the BBC are just as responsible for handing out public cash as the House of Commons, and so at the very least the likes of Mr Paxo and Ms Waaaark on the Newsnight Show and Mr Humpy and Mr Naughty and Mr Evan on the Today Programme programme should be publishing their salaries and expenses alongside Mr Frown and Mr Balloon and Mr Clogg. But to be honest, all journalists, like the MPs, hold a public trust so why stop at the BBC? Everyone from Ms Pollyanna Toytown to Little Miss Jammy Clarkson to Bojo the Clown could do with a does of the "honesty"!)

And it's perfectly true that the Hellograph has an AGENDA. And promoting better democracy is not it. This isn't partisan – not entirely. They hosed the Horse Manure ALL AROUND – up to and including a LUDICROUS attempts to smear our own Stormin' Norman – in part because it hurts the Government MORE anyway, in part because it's easier for Mr Balloon to play the "let me clean it all up" card than the tired Hard Labour of Mr Frown, and in part to slap Mr Balloon around so he remembers who's boss too.

And remember, the Helograph have succeeded in smearing EVERY MP, even though their "full investigation" covers fewer than one hundred out of six-hundred and forty-six.

The powers of the MEEJA – in particular the deadwood press – are much reduced by openness like that created by the Wibbly Wobbly Web, and Freedom of Information and more people just being clued up. By spreading apathy, getting fewer people to vote, they WEAKEN our democracy, not strengthen it, and get a bit of their old power back.

But Saint Stephen is WRONG to say it is just fluff, that "everyone" fiddles their expenses and we shouldn't be so harsh on MPs.

People are deeply, deeply angry. It's being expressed in HOOTING OUTRAGE about some petty misdemeanours but it's rooted in REAL FEAR. Fear about the economy and jobs and losing houses: things that our MPs had kind of promised to protect.

This needs a SOLUTION and it needs one NOW.

It is NO USE to man nor fluffy beast that people keep tossing out ideas and no one will bring themselves to agree.

Mr Clogg puts forward proposals… and Mr Frown and Mr Balloon agree to ignore him.

Mr Frown goes on HootTube with a unilateral declaration – and he is UNANIMOUS in that! – and Mr Clogg and Mr Balloon agree that it's not good enough.

Let's just accept the Kelly Commission recommendations – better still, lets say we'll accept the Kelly Commission's recommendations as a BARE MINIMUM requirement. Mr Clogg and Mr Frown can agree to that… but now Mr Balloon is looking shifty and won’t sign up.

Mr Clogg puts forward NEW proposals… and Mr Frown and Mr Balloon agree to ignore him again.

And round and round it goes.

That's why people are looking for a PROTEST vote, and it doesn't help when the likes of Lord Norman Skinhead rise from the grave to urge people to vote BNP, cough, cough "not for the major parties".

The single most depressing thing EVER is to see the British Nasty Party conference getting coverage – any coverage at all – on the BBC, and thinking, well that's an extra point in the polls for them, right there.

THAT is the problem. To think, the Nasties, whose councillors when elected take your money and never, ever, ever do any work for you, might get away with a PANTOMIME involving three little pigs in red and blue and gold rosettes. And the BBC treats this as CREDIBLE.

THAT is how much of a FAIL this is.


1 comment:

Andrew Hickey said...

Ms Toytown did reveal her salary recently. It's £106,000. Which given that I know of no-one who reads the Grauniad for her ramblings, but plenty who avoid it partly or wholly because of her, represents quite shocking value for money...