Saturday, 9 May 2009
Posted by Sarah Pellew
I did think, some time ago now, of becoming a politician.I thought that it would be great to be a Member of Parliament - able to serve my fellow countrymen in the oldest parliament in the world, the home of democracy, honesty and justice.
Well, it seems that there is now no point whatsoever.Now that the Daily Telegraph has exposed the whole MP's expenses scam I would assume that I have missed the boat.For those of you who don't know about this, it is the breaking story that MP's from all parties have been claiming expenses for all sorts of outrageous things - working the system in a completely legal way ( its all within the rules.... they whine ), but in a way that is morally bankrupt.
In these days of credit crunch where most of us would be happy just to keep our job, they have worked tirelessly to milk every last bit of cash possible from us, the taxpayer.Although paid the very healthy salary of between £95,000 and £140,000 per annum, this has, apparently, not been sufficient to keep them in the way they preferred to live.
Several MP's claimed £400 per month on food, some even when Parliament was not sitting.Others claimed for new kitchens,furniture,nappies,clothes,hire of videos...You name it, the list goes on and on.They have used the rules to justify claiming expenses for second homes, even when they lived close to London.They have played the property market, using tax payers money to jiggle and fiddle and make a profit.
When I wrote about Joanna Lumley the other day and expressed my admiration for her, part of that admiration was based on her honesty, her straight talking.If only our Members of Parliament were as honest as her.They should watch her and learn.They were elected, by us, the people, to serve us.We pay them a huge amount of money to do that job and as far as I am concerned they don't need to claim any expenses.If I was paid £100,000 a year I imagine that I would be able to manage my food bills at Tesco each month.I would be honoured to serve my country and would feel bloody lucky to get paid for it as well.
The fact that these claims were within the rules is irrelevant. Any honest, self respecting person can look at them and know that they are wrong.Immoral.Any politician worth their salt should have the guts to stand up and apologise, pay back what they have taken and admit that they were wrong.They should be ashamed.