Friday, December 8

MP’s pay and some questions

I’ve been recovering from the shock of the MP’s demanding a 66% payrise. I thought that it was some kind of April 1st joke or that the £100,000 was for the lot of them but reviewing the BBC News “have your say” section leads me to believe that these jokers just might be serious.

Their reason for claiming such a salary is that professionals such as Doctors earn in the region of £100,000 so they as similar “professionals” are somehow entitled to the same salary.

One of the discrepancies is that the Doctors salary is for the PRACTICE so they must pay secretaries, receptionists, cleaners, upkeep of the surgery etc. out of the amount. So the headline figure isn’t quite as rosy as things seem.

Contrast this with the whole gravy train and trough (paid for by the taxation on the serfs) that the MP’s have their snout and both trotters well embedded into.

Their proposed salary of £100,000 will be exactly that. A salary. They can claim additional costs for “office staff” to run their constituency offices back home but generally they pay their wives to be their secretary. So this is a way of generously paying a member of their family for doing naff all. Then they have their “expenses” which are totally without scrutiny. And the expenses claimed are revealing. It includes their travelling allowances at a VERY highly favourable rate and far in excess of anything I could claim from any company I worked for. I could go on listing the various expenses, perks and incidentals they can (and do!) claim but a quick trawl of the various websites (including the parliamentary website) will swiftly reveal the extent of their goldbricking. As a very conservative estimate, they would without too much trouble, double the proposed salary. A £200,000 package isn’t out of the realms of possibility.

However (and this is a big however) professionals are accountable for their conduct and are held to be responsible under law if they are guilty of professional misconduct. I am an engineer and if I made a mistake in a calculation or a design, then if anyone was injured (or even if no injury occurred but the possibility that an injury COULD have occurred) I could be in Court under various charges. Professional indemnity insurance would pick up SOME of the legal bill (not all – only that over £100,000 – THERE’S a coincidence in numbers!) but not any fine imposed by the Courts. I could lose my home and everything I have worked for due to an honest mistake at any time within my lifetime.

However (and it is a second big however) if you take a moment to examine the performance of these incompetents, you’ll realise that they have a sort of reverse Midas touch – everything they turn their baleful attention to turns to shit, not gold.

A cursory review of their performance and the state of the country will confirm the reverse Midas effect.

NHS – throw twice the money at it and look for improvements. The majority of the trusts report zero improvement and one or two only a marginal (1 or 2 percent) improvement. I wonder if you would conduct your own finances in such a way. Would you compare two cars, both identical as far as you could tell from equipment levels etc. but be told this one will do 2% higher top speed or a 2% improvement in fuel efficiency but will cost double the price of the first? Excellent value? I think not !

Immigration – lost the plot and definitely no particular interest in doing anything about it.
Welfare payments to illegal immigrants (sorry- I meant “asylum seekers”) – just like poor parents say about children “They are here and must be kept”. So as soon as these people set foot into the country, they are entitled to a host of welfare payments and help and a whole army of advisors, councillors etc. are there to ensure they get their “entitlement”. Again, would you run your own personal life like this? If I broke into your home and you came home from work and caught me, could I claim board, lodging and be fully entitled to be considered a member of your family without paying a penny? Of course, we can’t increase payments to our own pensioners who HAVE contributed to the system or relieve them of the burdens of paying out for fuel, Council Tax etc.

Crime and law and order – this whole scenario reminds me of Stalinist Russia when people were dying in their millions in the midst of a famine and the propaganda films were showing happy, plump, rosy cheeked peasants gathering in the bountiful harvest and feasting at tables groaning with the weight of food. According to official figures, crime is down, you have nothing to worry about, criminals are paying their debt to society etc. It’s all panic generated by those evil Daily Mail journalists and their readers. This is in fairly stark contrast to my own experience and people I work with. I see newspapers reporting serious crime on a daily basis, the local TV channels report crime and murders every night but I never see them saying “We got this wrong – this didn’t happen”.

In the course of my job, I travel around the country and it is surprising the way the country is compartmentalised as far as news coverage is concerned. Watching the Birmingham local news programmes shows Birmingham to have a shockingly high level of crime whereas crimes from the rest of the country rarely make it to the national news.

Conversely when I am back home (generally at the weekends) and I chat to friends up here about the news, they report crimes that occurred on Tyneside and a review of the local news reveals that Tyneside has a shockingly high level of crime. Anyone who listens to or watches their local news channels will conclude that anywhere else in the country must be an improvement on their own location.

So my conclusion is that crime of all descriptions is much higher than most people realise but the divide and conquer policies of the Government hides the real level except from determined researchers.

Just today, it has been revealed that ASBOs aren’t really working. Now there’s a surprise! People who have been committing crimes for a long period are told by the Police and justice system “If you promise to be nice, we won’t prosecute you”.

The Metropolitan Police also report that (and here is another surprise!) the recent knife amnesty hasn’t achieved the reduction in knife crime that they expected. The differences in the rate of knife crime is statistically insignificant. I would expect that the “reduction” was caused by the criminals being away on their summer holidays. Not surprising really as only honest and law abiding people would dutifully hand in a knife under these circumstances and someone who is prepared to casually stab someone just for the thrill of doing so is unlikely to do so.

Taxation – the levels of taxation under this spendthrift Government are truly mind boggling. Goondoom Brown must be the greatest genius that ever lived. I never realised that the solution to so many problems was to tax it. Green credentials? Put up tax on fuel. Roads congested? Tax driving by putting in a pay per mile scheme. People save for their retirement and make themselves independent of the State? Tax it. The simple, obvious solution is always the best, isn’t it? So much so that the feeling among many of the people I speak to is that although bonded servitude was abolished a while ago, this Government is trying to reduce the whole of the country to such a state with the Government being the ultimate slavemaster. Just like Soviet Russia.

ID cards? – do it by stealth. If you don’t want to queue at the airport, just stroll up to the special counter, get fingerprinted, have your Iris scanned and leave a DNA sample. That way, if you are a terrorist wanting to destroy a jumbo jet in flight, the government will be able to identify your remains. Then once a sufficiently large percentage of the population are recorded make it compulsory.

Lest you think I am a particularly critical individual, I would urge you to look at the Blair Broadcasting Conning website (that’s the BBC website to the less cynical) and look at the “News” section then click on the “Have your say” link. There are several topical subjects that the moderated (i.e. any comment posted will be reviewed and deleted if “Inappropriate”) I personally just look at the “Recommended” comments. The comments are quite scathing in their condemnation of the policies and methodology of the Government. Count the “people recommending this comment” and form your own conclusions.

One HYS topic was “Who should lead the Labour party?”. I suggested the Pied Piper so that the whole rats nest could be drowned but the comment didn’t get past the censors. Ah, well….

Lots of questions in the above but there is just one that I’d ask the Politicians.

Do you really want to be re-elected?