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Thread: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

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    MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    What a joke!!

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7486612.stm

    What is this country coming to? Gee, what a bunch of two faced morons!!

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Aren't they meant to be working for 'the people', in which case surely 'the people' should decide on such things?

    I think I need to find a company where they let all the employees vote on whether to have 24k expenditure...

    (I do try and keep my nose away from politics, as in my opinion it's all a load of injustice)

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Dear oh dear..

    It hardly comes as a suprise but still.. it's a bit of a kick in the goodies.

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    wish i had 24k to do up my house
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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    "...whilst Gordon Brown and his most senior ministers went Awol."

    I hear a rustling in the wind...it sounds like somebody saying "spineless"

    If housing MPs in london on a temporary basis is so expensive they should show some initiative and build a block of flats or the like next to Westminster Palace. Pool the accomodation, security etc to reduce costs and no more travel costs within London becasue they live next door. Done.

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Put tents up in Buckingham palace for them!!

    Bloody cheek what they get away with!!

    I see it was the labour lot that didn't want the changes!! Think i will be expressing my anger with my vote at the next general election..... Not to vote labour!!

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    nice to see our elevated fuel prices are going to good use...

    ..wtf?!!
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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    they get more than I am paid just for a "second home allowance". Now I know where all that tax I see taken from my pay is going.

    ****ers, they are going on my list.

    In all seriousness though, the more I read into what MPs are paid the more I feel like a slave to the Government.

    They talk bad about Mugabe taking money from his country to feed his own lifestyle and then go and do it themselves
    Last edited by Jay; 03-07-2008 at 11:05 PM.
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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    I feel another letter coming on..
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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Quote Originally Posted by Russ View Post
    wish i had 24k to do up my house
    I wish I had 24k full stop.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiggerai View Post
    I do like a bit of hot crumpet

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    MPs have voted to keep their £24,000 second home allowances, but have decided not to award themselves above-inflation pay rise
    Lol, this is so pointless. Its hardly a surprise that they voted to keep their £24 K allowance, which sane MP wouldn't? However they are not completely the greedy b******s we thought they were, they did have the 'decency' not to award themselves above-inflation pay rise

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Bah.

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Quote Originally Posted by G4Z View Post
    I feel another letter coming on..
    Hehe I wonder if you'd actually even get a response this time?!

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    This looks, to me, to be a serious own goal for MPs, and especially the government, at a time when trust or faith in either is at a huge low.

    The thing is, to me, it's not that they get expenses or even the amount of the expenses. It's what some choose to do with that allowance, and what they spend OUR money on, and the perception that they're all "at it".

    And moreover, it's the perception, only hugely reinforced by this vote, that they think they're something special and don't have to account for themselves to us that is so damaging. The sad thing is, they don't. The system is set up in such a way that we, the people, really have no effective way at all to bring MPs to heel over this.

    The ONLY way we can hold then to account is to not vote for them come the next election.

    But .... elections are about a whole range of things, about the economy, about security and foreign policy, about .... well, 5 years of government. Not about greedy MPs and their expenses. And besides, the system is set up so that only MPs can change this, and whoever you vote for at that election becomes an MP and then has a vested interest, not to mention internal party pressures, to do nothing about it.

    We, the electorate, have got ourselves in the position where we've elected the insane to run the asylum.


    But there's another side to all this. I have no doubt that MPs incur quite a high level of expenses, and that many of those expenses are incurred, quite legitimately, in the work they do for us and on our behalf. Every MP runs a constituency office, they have surgeries to hold and a LOT of constituent issues to deal with. Doing that takes time, and effort, requires a staff and costs a fortune.

    And all the expenses incurred in doing that, however many tens of thousands of pounds it is, are a perfectly legitimate and absolutely necessary part of being able to do the job properly.

    Moreover, many MPs live a long way from London and yet have to spend significant amounts of time in London. Due to the archaic and frankly absurd operating hours of the Commons, much of that time is at antisocial hours and is likely to leave even relatively local MPs wanting London accommodation.

    Again, that's a reasonable expense.

    But what gets up people's noses is the way in which the current system is abusive. Note, I said it's the system that is abusive, not that MPs (with a few notable exceptions) are abusing it.

    For instance, there was a report on the radio this afternoon that one instance involved (IIRC) Margaret Beckett buying a pergola for the garden of her second home at our expense. And flowers for the garden.

    That an MP needs London accommodation, I can understand. That the system allows plasma TVs or pergola's, let alone flowers for the garden, is just an outrageous rip-off of the taxpayer.

    Assuming that this radio report was correct, I'd love to see Ms Beckett explain just how the pergola was necessary for her to perform her Parliamentary duties.

    And as for special tax exemption for MPs, how dare they?

    I have NO problem at all with MPs, many of whom are hard-working, claiming legitimate expenses necessarily incurred in doing their jobs. But naffing pergolas?


    And that is what is so crazy about today's vote. MPs are clearly contemptuous of public opinion, because they regard themselves as something special, somehow exempt from the rules that apply to the rest of us. Well, in some areas, as a matter of legislative fact, they are exempt from some of those rules, such as Parliamentary privilege in being exempt from being pursued through the courts if they raise certain matters in the House. Where it is necessary to do the job, it's right that they should have that protection.

    But not to buy pergolas with OUR money.


    MPs ought to be paid a salary commensurate with the job,. And it ought to be an independent panel that sets that rate, and any changes to it, NOT the MPs themselves. And they also ought to receive, within rational limits, expense allowances that cover any costs incurred in doing the job .... but no pergola allowance! .

    They also ought to be subjected to the same degree of public scrutiny as any other public servant, for that is what they are. That means they ought to be subject to independent scrutiny of ALL expenses, which ALL ought to be covered by receipt and accounted for in exactly the same way any employer expects expenses to be accounted for .... or the way HMRC expect businesses to be able to account for expenses.

    After all, MPs are quite happy for the state to expect accountability in our tax affairs from us, yet refuse to allow the same principle to apply to them.

    What expenses did NOT ought to allow is either for MPs to personally profit (such as capital gains on properties bought to do their jobs) or for personal indulgences like flippin' pergolas.

    It's perfectly clear to me that a LOT of MPs are highly embarrassed about being part of the system that lacks accountability and transparency, and that they support full disclosure, much tighter controls and independent external auditing. But it's equally clear that many others do not.

    And does that not make a certain conclusion highly suggestive ..... those that do not want external auditing have something they don't want external auditors to find .... or us to know about?

    In most cases, I'd guess that that "something", like Ms Beckett and her (excuse me if I'm going on about it, but I'm still gob-smacked at the sheer temerity of it) <bleeeeeep>ing pergola are within the rules, but have a very high potential embarrassment quotient.

    In other words, it's not that I think that most MPs are breaking the rules, though a few clearly have been. It's that the rules are wrong, and badly need amending. Which, of course, is what MPs have just refused to do. Why? Because, short of voting them out, they know there's nothing we can effectively do, and even if we vote a few of the more creative (pergola, indeed )) miscreants out, we'll get another batch in their place and the system will still remain.

    Accountability? What accountability?

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Great post Saracen, it's very frustrating. 24k it's just unbelievable.

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    Re: MPs opted to keep their £24,000 second homes allowances.

    Borrowed from a newspaper - the list of MPs that voted against the reform proposals.

    Is yours on there?


    Labour:

    Nick Ainger (Carmarthen West & Pembrokeshire South),
    Graham Allen (Nottingham North),
    David Anderson (Blaydon),
    Janet Anderson (Rossendale & Darwen),
    Ian Austin (Dudley North),
    Adrian Bailey (West Bromwich West),
    Gordon Banks (Ochil & Perthshire South),
    Kevin Barron (Rother Valley),
    Margaret Beckett (Derby South),
    Clive Betts (Sheffield Attercliffe),
    Liz Blackman (Erewash),
    Roberta Blackman-Woods (Durham, City of),
    Bob Blizzard (Waveney),
    David Borrow (Ribble South (South Ribble)),
    Nick Brown (Newcastle upon Tyne East & Wallsend),
    Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield),
    Colin Burgon (Elmet), Andy Burnham (Leigh),
    Stephen Byers (Tyneside North),
    Alan Campbell (Tynemouth),
    Ronnie Campbell (Blyth Valley),
    Ben Chapman (Wirral South),
    David Chaytor (Bury North),
    Tom Clarke (Coatbridge,
    Chryston & Bellshill),
    David Clelland (Tyne Bridge),
    Ann Clwyd (Cynon Valley),
    Ann Coffey (Stockport),
    Harry Cohen (Leyton & Wanstead),
    Michael Connarty (Linlithgow & Falkirk East),
    Rosie Cooper (Lancashire West),
    Ann Cryer (Keighley),
    John Cummings (Easington),
    Jim Cunningham (Coventry South),
    Tony Cunningham (Workington),
    Wayne David (Caerphilly),
    Ian Davidson (Glasgow South West),
    Janet Dean (Burton),
    Frank Dobson (Holborn & St Pancras),
    Brian Donohoe (Ayrshire Central),
    Jim Dowd (Lewisham West),
    Angela Eagle (Wallasey),
    Maria Eagle (Liverpool Garston),
    Jeff Ennis (Barnsley East & Mexborough),
    Bill Etherington (Sunderland North),
    Caroline Flint (Don Valley),
    Paul Flynn (Newport West),
    Michael Foster (Worcester),
    Michael Jabez Foster (Hastings & Rye),
    Mike Gapes (Ilford South),
    Dr Ian Gibson (Norwich North),
    Linda Gilroy (Plymouth Sutton),
    Nia Griffith (Llanelli),
    Andrew Gwynne (Denton & Reddish),
    Mike Hall (Weaver Vale),
    David Hamilton (Midlothian),
    Dai Havard (Merthyr Tydfil & Rhymney),
    Stephen Hesford (Wirral West),
    Sharon Hodgson (Gateshead East & Washington West),
    Jimmy Hood (Lanark & Hamilton East),
    George Howarth (Knowsley North & Sefton East),
    Beverley Hughes (Stretford & Urmston),
    Joan Humble (Blackpool North & Fleetwood),
    Dr Brian Iddon (Bolton South East),
    Eric Illsley (Barnsley Central),
    Adam Ingram (East Kilbride, Strathaven & Lesmahagow),
    Brian Jenkins (Tamworth),
    Diana Johnson (Hull North),
    Kevan Jones (Durham North),
    Martyn Jones (Clwyd South),
    Tessa Jowell (Dulwich & West Norwood),
    Eric Joyce (Falkirk),
    Alan Keen (Feltham & Heston),
    David Kidney (Stafford),
    Peter Kilfoyle (Liverpool Walton),
    Bob Laxton (Derby North),
    Tom Levitt (High Peak),
    Ivan Lewis (Bury South),
    Tony Lloyd (Manchester Central),
    Ian Lucas (Wrexham),
    Tommy McAvoy (Rutherglen & Hamilton West),
    Stephen McCabe (Birmingham Hall Green),
    Christine McCafferty (Calder Valley),
    Kerry McCarthy (Bristol East),
    Sarah McCarthy-Fry (Portsmouth North),
    Siobhain McDonagh (Mitcham & Morden),
    James McGovern (Dundee West),
    Anne McGuire (Stirling),
    Shona McIsaac (Cleethorpes),
    Rosemary McKenna (Cumbernauld, Kilsyth & Kirkintilloch East),
    Tony McNulty (Harrow East),
    Denis MacShane (Rotherham),
    Khalid Mahmood (Birmingham Perry Barr),
    Rob Marris (Wolverhampton South West),
    Gordon Marsden (Blackpool South),
    Alan Meale (Mansfield),
    Gillian Merron (Lincoln),
    Andrew Miller (Ellesmere Port & Neston),
    Madeleine Moon (Bridgend),
    Jessica Morden (Newport East),
    Elliot Morley (Scunthorpe),
    George Mudie (Leeds East),
    Denis Murphy (Wansbeck),
    Paul Murphy (Torfaen),
    Mike O'Brien (Warwickshire North),
    Eddie O'Hara (Knowsley South),
    Sandra Osborne (Ayr, Carrick & Cumnock),
    James Plaskitt (Warwick & Leamington),
    Bridget Prentice (Lewisham East),
    Gordon Prentice (Pendle),
    Gwyn Prosser (Dover),
    Ken Purchase (Wolverhampton North East),
    Nick Raynsford (Greenwich & Woolwich),
    John Robertson (Glasgow North West),
    Terry Rooney (Bradford North),
    Chris Ruane (Vale of Clwyd),
    Christine Russell (Chester, City of),
    Alison Seabeck (Plymouth Devonport),
    Barry Sheerman (Huddersfield),
    Jimmy Sheridan (Paisley & Renfrewshire North),
    Angela C Smith (Sheffield Hillsborough),
    Angela E Smith (Basildon), Jacqui Smith (Redditch),
    Anne Snelgrove (Swindon South),
    John Spellar (Warley),
    Phyllis Starkey (Milton Keynes South West),
    Gavin Strang (Edinburgh East), Gisela Stuart (Birmingham Edgbaston),
    Gerry Sutcliffe (Bradford South),
    Mark Tami (Alyn & Deeside),
    Gareth Thomas (Harrow West),
    Emily Thornberry (Islington South & Finsbury),
    Don Touhig (Islwyn),
    Derek Twigg (Halton),
    Kitty Ussher (Burnley),
    Keith Vaz (Leicester East),
    Lynda Waltho (Stourbridge),
    Claire Ward (Watford),
    Tom Watson (West Bromwich East),
    Dave Watts (St Helens North),
    Phil Wilson (Sedgefield),
    Rosie Winterton (Doncaster Central),
    Shaun Woodward (St Helens South),
    Phil Woolas (Oldham East & Saddleworth),
    David Wright (Telford),
    Iain Wright (Hartlepool),
    Derek Wyatt (Sittingbourne & Sheppey)

    Conservative:

    David Amess (Southend West),
    James Arbuthnot (Hampshire North East),
    Henry Bellingham (Norfolk North West),
    Brian Binley (Northampton South),
    Sir John Butterfill (Bournemouth West),
    Christopher Chope (Christchurch),
    John Greenway (Ryedale),
    Gerald Howarth (Aldershot),
    Bernard Jenkin (Essex North),
    Julie Kirkbride (Bromsgrove),
    Eleanor Laing (Epping Forest),
    Anne McIntosh (Vale of York),
    Andrew Mackay (Bracknell),
    Andrew Rosindell (Romford),
    Hugo Swire (Devon East),
    Sir Peter Tapsell (Louth & Horncastle),
    Angela Watkinson (Upminster),
    Ann Widdecombe (Maidstone & The Weald),
    David Wilshire (Spelthorne),
    Lady Ann Winterton (Congleton),
    Sir Nicholas Winterton (Macclesfield)

    Independent:

    Dai Davies (Blaenau Gwent),
    Robert Wareing (Liverpool West Derby)

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