Thursday, 13 August 2009

Living On Rations

When will they learn? It wasn't enough that the public has already vented its spleen with some venom about MPs Expenses but the fact remains, much like bank bonus-syndrome in the finance world, MPs think they are actually hard done by.

Alan Duncan has made more than a mistake and here is where David Cameron is wrong. The secret film of Duncan's rant to 'Don't Panic' Magazine was the sort of clandestine attitude that needs to be rooted out from politics. But once again, we find it is not the fact that Duncan thinks this way that is the mistake, it is the fact that the stupid idiot was caught. This stems right back to the attitude taken by most MPs when they were caught out pilfering public money - we got a mixture of anger that the Telegraph used 'underhand' tactics to get the inside track, they felt it was an affront to their privacy as they should be allowed to steal in peace and that they were only sorry for getting caught. In very few cases did we get people holding up their hands, showing that they acknowledged they had done wrong and were accountable enough to stand down, knowing full well they were unworthy to hold such an important position.

This is the crux of the matter. When this whole bomb about MP Expenses exploded publicly, the taxpayers were in the middle of being pinched for the cost of the bank bail outs which was not their sphere of accountability. The taxpayer was also being nobbled as more began to lose their jobs and even more were living in fear of losing their job.

Meanwhile, on the political gravy train we had a former PM picking up £4m a year for after dinner speaking and few days worth of non-executive lunches and 640+ MPs feeding at the trough so amply stocked by our tax money.

Alan Duncan is seriously out of touch with the real world when he talks of living on rations. MP committees, which included the very pious Harriet Harman, have shadily voted through that MPs can have £250 per day allowance for which they do not have to produce a single receipt. In fact, many MPs have this allowance actually Direct Debited into their bank accounts regardless of whether they spend it or not on their daily needs to do a job.

Let's get this absolutely clear, this is £250 per day of tax free allowance - not up to £250 - but actually £250 paid on top of their salary, tax free.

Compare and contrast, if you will, the war time rationing which I dare say Mr. Idiot Duncan is referring to. I remember my parents and grandparents telling me the amazingly paltry amounts of daily foods they were allowed and often thought that it was some kind of Monty Python sketch, so incredible was it on what they survived. Recently, Harry Patch, the last fighting Tommy, passed on and he could have given Alan Duncan just a few examples of what rations really were all about.

Of course, the charismatic and all too clever, Mr. Duncan will say that this was not what he meant but the reality is it is exactly what he meant. He thinks he is being hard done by for having £60,000 basic salary a year plus £250 per day tax free to live off plus all the other allowances he can fiddle and fake. He is in the very top quartile of UK earners and there are millions who not only would beg to have the kind of work and hours he does but would be far more worthy and honest in representing their fellow citizens.

Cameron is making a serious mistake in forgiving this ungrateful little twerp. As some would say, sacking is too good for him.

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