•Fred, they only call themselves “honourable members”‏ : letter to Express 12/7/13

Fred Forsyth often offers an interesting insight on various issues, especially those to do with foreign relations and similar.
However his latest utterances on MP’s and Political partties seem a little romanticised and reminiscent of a bygone age.
Firstly, MP’s, themselves, are quite capable of looking after theirselve’s.
I would contend that, if we demanded that they work for free, they’d end up with millionaire lifestyle’s.
I’d be happy to see them with a paypacket of £80k, if they didn’t write tax laws, with special concessions for MP’s.
If they didn’t accept consultancies, or Newspaper columns (at least until after two years living off their golden goodbyes).
If they were to be given severe prison sentences, when found to be acting in a rewarded lobbying capacity.
If they accepted basic Travelodge-style communal accomodation when in London.
If they accepted second-class train travel passes, instead of travel expenses.
If they didn’t employ relatives as researcher’s.
If they brought in legislation to cap the salaries of all those overpaid public servants, who are constantly used as comparisons of how poorly, they, themselves are paid.
Secondly, why the contention that we must have political parties?
Name any two MP’s who agree entirely on every issue.
Many MP’s have “crossed the floor” and for the vast public most of our senior politicians seem to be of the same class with the same views, irrespective of party.
They agree on most issues of the day, especially that of dipping into the public purse to fund their party conferences and their advertising.
If politicians must club together on specific issues, they should do what the rest of us do and pay subscriptions to promote them.
In fact I would ban donations to political parties and insist all donatons must be made to individual MP’s, with a cap on what can be paid to each and prison for any deceit.
If Unite want to buy Ed’s loyalty, fine.
If Goldmann Sachs want to buy Cameron’s loyalty, fine.
If their constituents are happy to have this happen, fine, they’ll be re-elected.
With Party politics, we will soon be expected to pay for their endless party political broadcasts and subversion of media pundits.
All the while, there’ll be the suspicion that one party is driving the agenda of Union bosses and the other is driving the agenda of The City of London.



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