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Cheers - AE

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Toothless, useless and blamed by bastards for their own greed.

Are we to pity the poor MPs who are now telling us, as predicted by Guido, that it was all within the rules and approved by the fees office? Hariprat Harperson seems to think so even though the fees office seems to be either largely impotent, feckless or both.
All of the MPs whose claims have been disclosed by The Daily Telegraph have insisted that their payments were approved by administrative workers.
By invoking the office's approval, they suggested that their claims had been independently vetted and sanctioned. By parliamentary tradition, MPs are assumed to be honourable and to act accordingly. As such, it is not technically the role of Commons officials to police their claims.
The fees office has little or no ability to verify whether building repairs claimed by MPs are justified, or whether household goods bought for a second home are taken to that address.
The office is merely supposed to "advise and facilitate" members in their duties.
Yet Harriet Harman, the Leader of the Commons, appeared to suggest that it was the responsibility of the fees office to ensure that honourable members behaved with honour.
She said: "MPs make the claim under the system and under the system it's for the House of Commons fees office to decide whether it comes within the rules."
Riiiiiight. So when a burglar breaks into your house, shits in the teapot and runs off with any cash and jewellery lying about we shouldn't say that he's a thieving cunt who should have his bollocks superglued to the back of his elbows and then pushed into a Zorb ball at the top of a hill. It's for the police, CPS and courts to decide whether it comes within the rules first, and therefore if they don't catch the bastard everything's okay is it? Would you still think that personal morality doesn't enter into it, Harriet, if it was your back door forced open and your teapot with a chav's scat in it? Or would you think to yourself that the culprit must have fucking known that taking something they're not entitled to is fucking wrong?

Okay, extreme example. What about tax evasion? Not the perfectly legal tax avoidance measures that many people take and that the Grauniad gets so wound up, even though they're doing it to. Say on my last return I'd said I earned less than I did? Actually no, let's say something more in a grey area. Say I inflated my business expenses by adding some things that were kind of business related but kind of not. After all I buggered off to Australia and submitted my last return online, and I'd be prepared to bet that for the amount involved nobody would bother checking. HMRC would almost certainly say it's not deductible, or at least not wholly so, which means I'd know bloody well that it was deceitful, dishonest and wrong. I don't need to talk to the tax office and get their decision as to whether what I was doing was right or wrong. I'd fucking know. Now as far as I'm concerned the only difference is that Parliament has made the rules for expenses so pathetically loose that the grey areas are a fucking mile wide, on top of which the fees office hasn't got the means and/or the balls to check or challenge more than a handful of claims. The fee office is a problem and the system is a problem, but neither is THE problem. THE problem is that MPs are either too stupid to work out what's right and wrong, which should indicate supreme unsuitability to be in a law making body, or too venal and lacking in self control to stop themselves. Which also indicates unsuitability to be in Parliament come to think of it.

Haritwat Halfwit, I'd stop digging if I were you. For one thing you're just making the hole you're in deeper, and for another I'm worried that you might resurface in my garden.

UPDATE: Matthew D'Ancona understands this, and even asks why people supposedly clever enough to be cabinet ministers (even the PM) don't get it.
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