The MPs' expenses fiasco

May 12, 2009 2:59 PM

For a year from September 2007, my TPA blog continued to chronicle crap from the politicos in what amounted to updates to my book “Crap: A Guide to Politics”. The beginning of that blog describes the book itself, and the Introduction explains why my main source of political journalism was The Times, a standard bearer for Big Government.


Chapter 9, One-Rule-for-them Crap, concerned the double standards of the politicos, of which the current MPs expenses fiasco is an excellent example. Here is an excerpt from an editorial in The Times of 9th May:



“The outrage against MPs is not merely pious, it is also dangerous” ... “we should hold them to account for what really matters – their performances as legislators.”


Er, excuse me, might not these two features be related?


On the same day in the same newspaper, Matthew Parris, MP and Times columnist, provides a simple answer; “another £30,000 pa of salary” [and £20,000 pension]!


Why £30,000? Because “MPs would still be paid less than many GPs”


Oh that’s OK then. (Aren’t they the guys whose salaries doubled in Gordos first 10 years?)


It didn’t take long for another Times heavyweight columnist to wade in – three days to be precise. I refer to David Aaronovitch (quoted several times in my book) who also looks kindly at the GP standard (plus a second home payment) and dismisses we the sheeple as “a public that becomes intoxicated by its own outrage, that wants democracy but doesn’t want to pay for it and whose preferred form of political engagement is tossing the rattle out of the pram.”


I rest my case. Whatever The Times is, a representative of we the people it ain’t.

For a year from September 2007, my TPA blog continued to chronicle crap from the politicos in what amounted to updates to my book “Crap: A Guide to Politics”. The beginning of that blog describes the book itself, and the Introduction explains why my main source of political journalism was The Times, a standard bearer for Big Government.


Chapter 9, One-Rule-for-them Crap, concerned the double standards of the politicos, of which the current MPs expenses fiasco is an excellent example. Here is an excerpt from an editorial in The Times of 9th May:



“The outrage against MPs is not merely pious, it is also dangerous” ... “we should hold them to account for what really matters – their performances as legislators.”


Er, excuse me, might not these two features be related?


On the same day in the same newspaper, Matthew Parris, MP and Times columnist, provides a simple answer; “another £30,000 pa of salary” [and £20,000 pension]!


Why £30,000? Because “MPs would still be paid less than many GPs”


Oh that’s OK then. (Aren’t they the guys whose salaries doubled in Gordos first 10 years?)


It didn’t take long for another Times heavyweight columnist to wade in – three days to be precise. I refer to David Aaronovitch (quoted several times in my book) who also looks kindly at the GP standard (plus a second home payment) and dismisses we the sheeple as “a public that becomes intoxicated by its own outrage, that wants democracy but doesn’t want to pay for it and whose preferred form of political engagement is tossing the rattle out of the pram.”


I rest my case. Whatever The Times is, a representative of we the people it ain’t.

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