I manage a small company that employs just 20 people. To carry out this role professionally, I find that I regularly have to work a 60 hour week just to get everything done that I need to.
On top of this, as a board we are constantly fighting to get some clear strategy time to review where we are and to plan long term the direction of our business. There just never seems to be enough hours in the day.
This does not seem to be the case if your job is the running of our country though. If you are an MP it transpires that you have more than enough time to have other jobs running at the same time, easy peasy!
Over 300 MP list themselves on the register of member’s interests as having other jobs while they are MPs, many of them earning well over a £100,000 a year to top up their full time salaries as MPs, second home allowance and a cover all expense account.
Many of these additional roles take up between 80 to 100 hours per month for MPs keen to profit from their roles in government.
Firstly, it is clearly a full time job to run this country. The UK is not in particularly good shape right now, let’s be honest. If the UK were a boxer, it could be said we were on the ropes in the tenth round with allegations of us taking match fixing bribes, a possible doping scandal about to break whilst wearing a very dodgy pair sparkly shorts which barley covered our modesty. We need all the help we can get to survive this in tact.
What we need are MPs who give 100% of their time, energy and concentration on the job in hand, running this country. What we don’t need is a bunch of MPs who spout utter bullshit to get elected and immediately use their new connections in government to make themselves even richer.
Take an article in The Guardian this morning about Tim Yeo, chair of the Commons energy and climate change select committee. He has been, allegedly, caught in the latest lobbying scandal. He offered his services for £7,000 a day to coach an energy company on how to influence the committee.
He is quoted as saying to this made up energy company, “If you want to meet the right people, I can facilitate all those introductions and I can use the knowledge I get from what is quite an active network of connections.” Asked if that extended to government figures, Yeo replied: “Yes.”
Hmmm, I wonder if he mentioned his intentions to make himself rich, whatever the cost, when he was running for election? It makes no mention of this intention on his website. I guess it slipped his mind. Sack him now.
It is unfair to single out Tim Yeo for demonification though, there are a whole host of other MPs who are equally dishonest, amoral and self-serving and a cursory Google search will list them for you.
This bring to mind another reason MPs (or in fact anyone who has a full time role in government) should not have second, third and fourth jobs while they are professing to serve the country. It is clearly a conflict of interests.
The Guardian (who are having a busy Sunday) publish another article today about Lynton Crosby (none of us even had a chance to vote this fucker in) a political adviser to Cameron on £100,000 (of tax payer’s money) a year as well as finding the time to run his own commercial lobbyist firm.
This is clearly wrong as a stand-alone piece of information. Someone is paid by UK taxpayers to advise the PM on political policy whilst he runs a company that pays him to lobby the government to affect policy, which benefits them commercially.
It’s worse than that though, Mr. Lynton refuses to name any of the companies that pay him for his lobbying services, I wonder why? This is clearly an abuse of his position and an insult to us, the mugs who ultimately pay his (part time) salary. It is wrong, immoral and totally self-serving. Check out the full article here and then sack him, now.
Being an elected MP is more than a full time role, especially when, as a country, we are in such a mess. Yet we allow MPs to have other jobs which they justify by the spurious rational of ‘allowing MPs to have other jobs gives them experience of ‘real business’ and makes them better qualified as MPs’.
This implies that without this outside experience they would not be qualified to vote on policy that affects business in the UK.
Yet you don’t see MPs queuing up to try to live on benefits for a few months for the ‘real experience’ yet they feel that they are more than qualified to make policy which victimizes the poor and makes their lives impossible, while they spout how easy it is to live on £56 a week, funny that eh?
We would only accept this concept of the benefits of having other jobs when it applies to MPs though.
We would be less happy if our surgeons had to pause our operation mid way through as they also moonlighted as RAC roadside mechanic and had to dash off to mend a flat tire on the M25.
Or a teacher who could not teach our children that day as they had a part time job as a strip-o-gram as a way of maintaining ‘real life’ connections with their community which, obviously, makes them better more rounded out teachers.
We are asked to accept it with our MPs though. Obviously, if we are unhappy with this state of affairs we can just sack this useless self-serving and greedy MP and elect in someone better and more honest?
Er, no we can’t actually. We have to wait five years until the next election and then, and only then, can we get rid of the MP in question. We can then vote in a new MP and this whole corrupt cycle starts again, for the next five years and it goes on, ad infinitum.
This constant misuse of the system to make themselves rich makes most of us sick to the stomach. Yet it seems that this corruption is so engrained in the fabric of politics that there is no clear way of getting rid of it.
To an electorate struggling to survive in a world trapped in the grip of austerity meltdown, this constant self-serving corruption of MPs is deeply disempowering and leads to a complete disengagement for millions of us from politics. This is quoted back to us as ‘voter apathy’ as a way to explain piss poor voting figures at election times.
It is not apathy at all, it is a rage against this current political system steeped in cronyism, corruption and this clear ‘them and us’ divide, that means that they get richer and their lives get easier while we pay for their mistakes as our lives get harder.
The day we decide to unite as a group of human beings, sick and tired of being micro managed into serfdom, is a day this political elite should fear.
Vive la revolution!