Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Benefit Scroungers

Have we ever trusted them?

We don't know how much Sir Thomas Legg has demanded back from our benefit scrounging MPs. But you can bet it's only a small fraction of the cash they've scrounged from us over the years.

At the very least, you'd think they'd feel ashamed. You'd think they'd quietly pay up and crawl away to contemplate their manifold sins and wickedness. Wouldn't you?

In reality they're arguing the toss. They're saying that Legg has changed the rules retrospectively, and that they couldn't be expected to know. They've already agreed to forgive Jacqui over the £100 grand she ripped off by telling monstrous porkies about her living arrangements.

Yes, we know that all benefit scroungers blame "the system", but at least your average scrounger just takes the money - he doesn't presume he's a fit and proper person to rule over the rest of us.

Who do these appalling people think they are? For years they conceal the true extent of what they're taking from us, and then when we find out, they claim it's somehow not their fault.

When we were canvassing in Bracknell on Saturday, we heard first hand from voters what they think of MPs rinsing their expenses - their sitting MP is standing down precisely because he's been caught out.

To say the voters don't like it is an understatement. Several accused Tyler himself of being on the take - "you people are all the same - you make me sick". The damage to politics goes far beyond the MPs themselves.

Now, you may say we've never trusted, still less liked, our politicos. And there's something in that. Tyler Senior has a vivid childhood memory of an open-air election meeting, probably in 1929 or 1931 (see vid). He was with his grandfather, who spent the entire meeting shaking his fist at the local Tory MP addressing the crowd from the back of a haycart.

But if we've never trusted them, why have we let them take control over so much of our lives? Why have we never said enough is enough? Why have we never insisted on smaller government?

Are we that stupid?

PS Just as a reminder, Parliament costs us £0.5bn pa. Although that does exclude all the damage it inflicts on the wider world.

1 comment:

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