Yes, hold the front page, we're still all banging on about expenses.
I've tried not to, but looks like I'm being forced by expense pressure (as opposed to 'peer' pressure...get it?) into posting my rant about this.
My blog is called POLITICAL DISSUASION. "Why?" some may ask. Well, the last few weeks have highlighted and justified my view on parliamentary politics.
Here's a basic breakdown as to the reason's for my dissuasion...
1) All political parties' main priority is themselves. Parties do not want to win elections to better the country, but to better themselves and their image, lifestyle, status and legacy.
2) MPs join parties because they are the easier way to win a seat, win the cosy salary, the cosy job description and cosy allowances/expenses.
3) Members of parties will represent their party over representing their constituents most of the time. Even on issues MPs strongly disagree with, the party line is more important than democratic representation (I'm looking at Tom Harris' comments in this post).
4) Opposition parties will oppose for opposing's sake, and for no other reason than 'we can't let the other guys look like they're doing good'.
5) Expenses. Not just Westminster, but I have for many years been moaning and moaning about MEP expenses - and that they aren't being scrutinsed with the European elections coming up is beyond me!
6) There is so much good that could be done, so many productive policies, so much progress that we could make as a country if it wasn't for party politics. These things do not happen, do not make to the stage where they benefit people because...
7) Winning is more important than doing the right thing.
Everyone, especially the MPs know that they've been taking the piss. Everyone knows that 'the spirit of the rules' were not being upheld. And what will happen as a result? Nothing. Will Blears lose her seat? No. Will Morans get chucked? No.
Politics has never been a shining example of decency, but whatever was left of it is now being dragged through the mud. They fought to keep these expenses secret. They fought to be able to edit them, once all other avenues failed. They lined their pockets (and their curtains) at our expense and not one of them has the decency to say, yeah, we fucking milked it, we milked it like the cash-cow that it was and by God did those udders pay out in solid gold. We shouldn't have. We'll pay back what was against the spirit of the rules.
Not a chance, because politics isn't about that. It's about winning. It's about winning at the elections, it's about winning in Parliament and it's about winning in the property market.
Will any Tory bloggers really have the balls to say that those Tory MPs found out SHOULDN'T lose their seats or at least, pay the money back?
Will any Labour bloggers do the same for Labour MPs?
Salmond's even been slightly at it, so anyone going for him, demanding a repayment?
So, I challenge the Tory Bears, the Kezia Dugdales, the Yousuf Hamids, the Tom Harris', the SNP Tactical Voters, the Calum Cashleys, anyone who is a member of a party, to be as decent as we want our representatives to be and to hold them to account. As a member of no political party, I have no impact or influence on how YOUR representatives behave in the following few weeks. As a member of a party (a system which I again say ruins our potential as a country but keeps you all that bit coser to getting a cushy job), you are the only ones that can apply any real pressure.
Ask this question of yourself and your party...
"If it was just one political party that turned out to be fiddling the expenses, and it wasn't the one you're a member of...would you be calling for resignation?" YOU KNOW IT'S TRUE. If it was just the SNP MPs, Labour would be screaming it so much that Margaret Curran might have a heart-attack of joy.
If it was just the Tories, Gordon Brown and that tw@t Harman would certainly be calling for heads. Bloggers of every political persuasion would be no different.
But, as members of a party that is designed and aimed towards success for the party and not the country, I won't expect too much from anyone in that position.