Social and political commentary from a conservative perspective

These were the words used to describe Parliament by an angry Norman Baker MP today on Sky News. He is disgusted with the vote by MPs to exempt Parliament from the Freedom of Information Act.

Well said, sir.

But I wonder, why is he surprised? Did he not know before today that this self-serving behaviour is exactly what the public have now come to expect of MPs? He says that for the first time ever, he feels ashamed to be an MP. What? Only now? Was he proud of Parliament when they voted to award themselves a £10,000 communications allowance? Or when they vote to award themselves all manner of perks out of the public purse? And has he been proud of Parliament when they have voted again and again to limit our rights and freedoms?

I don’t mean to criticise Norman Baker. After all, he was doing the right thing today by voting against the exemption. I also know he voted against the £10,000 communications allowance (see here and here). I am only wondering why it took something like this for him to experience the shame we feel in our elected politicians.

11 Comments »

11 Responses to “‘Smug, self-serving, hypocritical and out of touch’”

  1. Tony Says:

    The title of my posting on the subject sums it up for me, ‘Squalid’.

  2. Bel Says:

    Tony, you got it right, ‘squalid’.

    Sometimes (many times) I get disillusioned with our politicians, but then I see the likes of you and Norman Baker, and I take heart.

    But you are right, this is squalid business.

  3. Ghost Cabinet Says:

    Yet another anti-democratic measure. It is a source of shame that a Conservative MP is the sponsor of this bill.

  4. jailhouselawyer Says:

    I wasn’t convinced by the Lord Chancellor’s justification for preventing the media from scrutinising politicians. If they have got nothing to hide why try to hide it?

  5. CalumCarr Says:

    The stock of politicians plummets below already record lows.

    I know MPs spoke in favour of the change but there is NOTHING valid which can be said in its favour.

    A short post, Bel, but you capture our utter disgust.

  6. Ian Grey Says:

    Squalid, indeed.

  7. Tony Says:

    I am only a new councillor in the provinces, so I am not sure I am as deserving of a plaudit as the principled politicians in the House who fought to block this insipid Bill. But thanks for the very kind comment Bel.

  8. dolbyn Says:

    Freedom of infomation, except for those with something to hide.

  9. dolbyn Says:

    Have been considering this and think that the problem and solution do not match. If personal letters are to be excluded from the bill then why only for MP’s. I can respect privacy and i can respect that letters and corespondance can be sensative, but surely reports and financial records of public reprepresntatives should be subject to scrutiny without recourse to courts and criminal investigations.

    Consider buisness law. Buisnesses are required to be audited and to publish their accounts, internal emails are privaledged unless there is a police investigation etc.

    Something that perhaps would need ledgeslation might be to protect the private lives of public officials and celebreties except where it is shown to interfer with their jobs. But then a few tabloids would have nothing to print most days.

  10. fidothedog Says:

    A sqallid bill by a sqalid little man.

  11. maneatingcheesesandwich Says:

    The Act allows for the exemption of information which it would be improper to disclose (ie names and addresses of correspondents etc.) so I can’t see any legitimate grounds for the proposal. Given that the Act allows for admin fees to be charged for the collection and supply of documents requested, I’d have thought most MPs would be jumping at the chance to invoice for yet more researcher/partner working hours.

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