Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Gold Taps Of Power

The gold taps in my bathroom are no more than I'm worth

Who'd have thought it would be a John Lewis price list that finally triggered the Ceausescu Moment for MPs? But over the last 24 hours we've heard a stream of them gulping, squawking, defending their Italian granite worktops, and blaming the media for the scream of anger rising from the streets.

But this isn't down to the media dripping cynicism over our fine upstanding rulers (as Anne Widdecombe was arguing this morning). We taxpaying voters are just Sick And Tired.

We're sick and tired of high-spending, high-living, conflicted politicos laying down the law for us, taxing us to b***ery and back, delivering crap services, and all the while apparently helping themselves to whatever they damned well please, without even bothering to tell us. WTF should we put up with it? We never asked them to run our lives.

They directly cost us £0.5bn pa.

That scream is saying they'd better find a better way. Soon.

PS Earlier in the week, I blogged hearing Michael Gove argue that the Tories should position themselves as anti-Establishment- pretty tough for an OE toff (even one who's now a whacking 16 points ahead of bumbling unappealing Brown). Especially with Cleggie going for the same ground. How much easier it would be if we could directly elect our leaders US style. Their Presidential system at least throws up the chance for Washington outsiders to threaten the ruling Establishment. Our Westminster electoral college system never allows that.

PPS Matthew Parris has some BOM advice on how the Tories should now position themselves: "The new Conservative language should be about waste, maladministration, extravagance, incompetence and drift. The new idea should be the need in hard times for rigour, severity and unsentimentality... The whole ethos surrounding a party leadership with ambitions to topple the present Government must be of a ruthlessly businesslike instinct to cut the fat, strip waste, sack the incompetent and pare down public administration to its essentials." Yup... that sounds like the talk voters are ready for all right. Just as long as the Tories remember they won't actually be able to manage Leviathan any better once they're in power, and that the real road to getting better value is serious structural reform.

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