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May 23, 2009

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DG

I'm trying to calm down about the whole thing, I really am - but every time I do, some twit goes wittering on about how my poor Joe Pleblic brain has been whipped into a fever by the evil tabloids and that I'm about to be fooled into voting for the BNP.

I'm not sure whether I'm angrier about the expenses or the condescension any more. Probably the latter, though.

Kay Tie

"You choose to misinterpret everything anyone says to you if they do not wholeheartedly support your own embittered view."

Right back at ya, Huw. You confuse my support for innocent bankers with support for Fred Goodwin (deliberately, I suspect). And when it comes to being a bitter old Trot, well..

HuwOS

Believe what you like Jolly, I suspect that what amusement there has been has been in laughing at you not with you.
Your insistence on rhyming does indeed make your posts stand out, it easily flags them as bits that can be skipped as they will contain no meaningful content.
As far exercising grey matter, do you mean yours or that of people trying to identify any point.

If there was a vote on whether you should
post here I would vote yes you should, I wish you would do so constructively but hey, if you choose not to, it is entirely your choice.

It is just a pity that every choice you make on your own behalf is one that minimises your voice, whether its writing every comment in nonsense verse or spoiling your ballot paper in elections.
It seems you are determined to be unheeded and you will keep spouting gibberish until you finally achieve your aim of being ignored by all.

Jolly Roger

Thanks for your opinion, nevertheless,
I would hate to add to your obvious distress,
That I seem to have provoked with my poetic words.
At least it makes them stand out from the herds.
Unlike yourself with your sycophantic splatter,
Conversing in verse exercises the grey matter.
So for now with our host's kindest permish,
I'll continue to post occasionally-ish.

I'm sorry to have sickened you since early days,
But I have amused some with versified phrase.
So democracy must rule, why not have a vote.
Is it time for Jolly Roger to get his hat and coat?
So step up and vote folks, hey, feel the love.
And if you so wish, vote NONE OF THE ABOVE.
So a parting shot from the "petty cartoonish buffoon".
Up yours Huwey, ya brown-nosing hoon.

HuwOS

Sorry Jolly, but to respond in kind, your so far up your own fundament that everything you see is coloured by it.

You choose to misinterpret everything anyone says to you if they do not wholeheartedly support your own embittered view.

Paul did not tell you, you should stop trying to get the situation resolved, he said the chances of it being resolved were small, not non existent.

As for myself, I told you that endlessly whining and letting your bitterness at a bad situation colour your view of every issue no matter how unrelated does nothing to encourage people onto your side.

Personally, I've been sick of you since the third or fourth post of yours I read.
Insisting on posting everything in rhyme diminishes the credibility of all you write and combined with the content makes you come across as a petty cartoonish buffoon.

Now to clarify for you
I am not calling you a buffoon.
I am not saying you do not have a case
I am not saying you have no business posting here or anywhere else.

What I am doing is pointing out how you come across and if you had any interest in coming across in any other manner you might take some of what I say on board.

Further clarification for you
You certainly have no obligation to take anything I say on board in fact I don't expect you will pay the slightest bit of attention and at the end of the day, how I say you come across is only my opinion which no one else may share.

Jolly Roger

Well maybe Paul, you should learn the rest,
Of my problem as discussed with Cardiff West.
If, as you say, there is no solution,
That sounds like a good reason for revolution.
If, as you claim, no answer to my case,
Why do I meet my MP face-to-face,
On a regular basis, every few weeks,
And send off more letters to political cliques.

I'm a little disappointed at your cowardly tone,
Where you seem to suggest that I leave well alone.
If all took an attitude such as yours,
We'd have probably lost those two World Wars.
I'm one of those people that may be knocked over,
But I'll be back as soon as I recover.
To fight for the money that been simply stole.
Instead of Unpaid Voluntary Work, I'd have been better off on the dole.

And as for you, Huw O'S.
It's MPs who've got me into this mess.
Amongst others who've added injury to insulty.
Is Tony 'SIXTY GRAND' Mc Nulty,
With Alistair 'MULTI-FLIPPER' Darling as well
'INSOMNIAC' Hain and 'TAX-FLIP Purnell.
'FAST TRACK' Blunkett, didn't give it two looks.
Do you wonder why I'm sick of dealing with CROOKS?

You claim that I'm petulant and a whiner as well.
Does this mean, metaphorically, that I should go to Hell?
As you've taken the role of Paul's sycophant minion,
Does this mean I'm in possession of an invalid opinion?
Should I just keep quiet, in favour of you,
For The Great Leader's work that you seem keen to do?
You're so far up Paul's, you're stickier than No-Nails,
In fact, you're so far up, we can just see your toenails.

HuwOS

"But, there appears to me to be a considerable number who could benefit from being removed from Public Office permanently."

Well that is an option,
open to their electorates and gosh almighty there'll be an election by June next year at the very latest.

HuwOS

"I would have thought by the way you throw claims of innocence about some had been cleared already."

This is covered already and agreed by you
that people are innocent until proved guilty
ergo they do not need to be proven innocent
and where no suggestion of illegality has been made those people have no need to be cleared. This is the situation that applies to the vast majority of MP's.

Specifically then with Ian Davidson
the reasonable explanation as to why an MP would have deliveries made to his constituency home rather than his alternate accomodation in London has been suggested.
Unless you have something other than snide remarks to make about it, then there is nothing further to discuss in relation to the matter.

In context, may be Glaswegian did not carry any suggestion that you might be lying about where you come from.
However if it had carried any doubts about to the veracity of your statement to be Glaswegian I don't see how an assertion that you don't tell lies would change the level of doubt.
What I did question was the statement that you were humble, your circumstances might be humble if you choose to describe them as such, but there is nothing humble about your manner as indeed there is nothing humble about mine.

George Laird

Dear Paul

"This whole smear is baseless and unjust and i will continue to say it".

I have no problem with that.

My point related to what you describe as the "colourful" way you put it across in the interview.

I have no hestitation in believing that the vast majority of MPs are not crooks.

But, there appears to me to be a considerable number who could benefit from being removed from Public Office permanently.

I am not party political on this matter.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

George Laird

Dear HuwOS

“you are absolutely right that Paul Murphy's had not”.

I am glad we have cleared that up.

“They don't call you scoop for nothing do they”.

I am called different things but since this is a family type blog and I dislike swearing I will leave it at that.

“I will join you in urging Paul to immediately have retractions of what he said in all national publications”.

I don’t believe I did ask him to issue a retraction.

“Do we have evidence that Ian Davidson used a free day to bring his things down to London, do you have any reason to believe he did not”.

Since you were making claims I would have thought that you had some insight that the rest of us hadn’t. I take it that you were guessing then; is that correct?

“The trouble with you georgie, is that you are a perfect example of the stupidity of those getting het up with this”.

You mean those people who are upset by abuse and criminal fraud are all stupid? I will stick with the entire UK who thinks what has been going on is unacceptable.

“There have been criminal abuses but your much more interested in how an MP got furniture to his second home or nit picking about whether a boiler was just dangerous or had already exploded when it was replaced”.

I wasn’t nit picking about whether his boiler was dangerous rather the differing accounts which you happily cleared up above.

Have you heard of the Nolan Principles? I believe that people in Public Office should have standards but I do confess to being old fashioned. I rarely find that people live up to expectations, I am a ‘don’t expect much that way you won’t be disappointed type of a guy’.

“George there hasn't been due process for anyone so for, not even the apparently guilty ones”.

I would have thought by the way you throw claims of innocence about some had been cleared already.

“A great many politicians are having their expenses published and it being suggested that these claims are somehow terrible despite there being no suggestion of illegality for them”.
Quick question, Sir Gerald Kaufman tried to claim £8,865 for a television under the rules, not illegal but was it morally right? He could spend in a day what someone on JSA would have to live on for three years.

You consider that “terrible”?

If you think back to the famous Harriet Harman Court of Public Opinion; I suspect that people are upset that the rules have been set up to allow personal gain which if a member of the public did likewise would result in possible prison.

“Many people object to other things claimed on expenses that are within the rules but against the spirit of the rules and we all certainly want the rules changed to exclude those behaviours”. But many of the expenses being published now are not only within the rules; they are within the spirit of the rules too”.

The spirit of the rules is a subjective concept which is open to those and only those who administer.

“But if you would like truly objective opinion by the standard you are requesting, then so far, no one is guilty of anything”.

As I stated a person is innocent till proven guilty.

“We strongly suspect that two or three are guilty but we will have to wait for due process to complete before we can say that any are anything other than innocent”.

Having a panel look at expenses claims which operates outside the normal rules in my opinion is meaningless.

This is a Police matter.

“Thats what innocent until proven guilty means, perhaps you meant to say you believed in guilty until proven innocent, I guess now is your time to say so”.

No, I believe in innocent until proven guilty but I am happy to inform you that at Glasgow University; they operate a system of guilty until proven innocent.

“And George, you may be Glaswegian but you are anything other than humble, and you bring no credit to yourself or your city”.

I can assure you that I am Glaswegian. Most people accept my veracity without question but since you don’t know me reassured I don’t tell lies. As to my claim of being humble that is subjective but in support of my claim I would like to highlight that I am dirt poor. Photos can be supplied on request if my word isn’t good enough.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

Paul Flynn

Jolly Roger, you know I discussed your grievance with your own MP who knows the full details. I have a high regard for him and his work. If he could not bring you the improvement you seek, there is probably little chance of your winning redress.

I do not know the details. But I do know from long experience that there are not solutions to all problems.

Paul Flynn

George Laird, I do think my off the cuff remarks will stand the textual analysis usually applied to Holy Writ. His boiler was finished, ancient and dangerous and had to be replaced. 'Blown up' is I believe a colourful way of saying the same thing. It was in his second home. He has not flipped or claimed excessively on his allowances. he is a convinced Christian and I would not expect him to do anything that is dis-honest.

This whole smear is baseless and unjust and i will continue to say it.

HuwOS

Please not ,
I meant George brings no credit to himself or his city from his last post.

He may well be a completely wonderful individual bringing himself and his city a great deal of credit, in other arenas.

In fact I very much hope he is.

HuwOS

Yes George,
Paul did say it blew up.
Faulty defective boilers can blow up but you are absolutely right that Paul Murphy's had not.
They don't call you scoop for nothing do they.
Nick Brown MP had a boiler that was described as having blown up.
Paul Murphy MP had a boiler that was deemed unsafe.
I will join you in urging Paul to immediately have retractions of what he said in all national publications.

"Can you produce third party evidence that Ian Davidson Labour MP was doing this on a free day?"

Do we have evidence that Ian Davidson used a free day to bring his things down to London, do you have any reason to believe he did not.

The trouble with you georgie, is that you are a perfect example of the stupidity of those getting het up with this.
There have been criminal abuses but your much more interested in how an MP got furniture to his second home or nit picking about whether a boiler was just dangerous or had already exploded when it was replaced.

"Can you give me a link that shows that some sort of due process has occurred and that the innocent ones had been cleared? I haven’t read anything yet so I assume that your comment is subjective opinion and not based on fact.

A person is innocent till proven guilty, a concept I believe in."

George there hasn't been due process for anyone so for, not even the apparently guilty ones.

A great many politicians are having their expenses published and it being suggested that these claims are somehow terrible
despite there being no suggestion of illegality for them.
Many people object to other things claimed on expenses that are within the rules but against the spirit of the rules and we all certainly want the rules changed to exclude those behaviours.
But many of the expenses being published now are not only within the rules, they are within the spirit of the rules too.

But if you would like truly objective opinion by the standard you are requesting, then so far, no one is guilty of anything.
We strongly suspect that two or three are guilty but we will have to wait for due process to complete before we can say that any are anything other than innocent.
Thats what innocent until proven guilty means, perhaps you meant to say you believed in guilty until proven innocent, I guess now is your time to say so.

And George, you may be Glaswegian but you are anything other than humble, and you bring no credit to yourself or your city.

HuwOS

Yes Jolly your story has been told here before
From previous posts I understand Paul is aware of your issues and that more than one MP has attempted to resolve the situation for you.

I am sorry that they have not been able to.

Nevertheless you seem old enough to know that endless whinging and whining whether the cause is justifiable or not is not something that is going to garner sympathy.

Everyone has their narrative, their joys and sorrows, the wrongs they've done and the wrongs that have been done to them.

But this is not daytime tv.
Neither Jeremy Kyle or Oprah are here.
Bitterness and petulance will not impress
and if you've been mocked, perhaps you should consider the part you played in inviting mockery.

George Laird

Dear HuwOS

“Paul Murphy said;

His old boiler was replaced after it was deemed unsafe and could not be repaired”.

Paul Flynn said that the boiler had “blown up”.

Would you concede that there is a factual difference in both accounts?

“But he can't fool you can he”.

I can be fooled but generally when I click on to it, it is generally the last time someone puts something over on me. I generally give people the benefit of the doubt in my dealings with them.

“He probably watched the new one being installed gloating at his ability to get it covered on expenses”.

I am sure Paul Murphy probably put the kettle on so the guys could get a cup of tea.

“And you're absolutely right, who in their right mind would drive and move furniture on a free day rather than waiting in all day or a few days away from home unnecessarily or on a busy working day”.

Can you produce third party evidence that Ian Davidson Labour MP was doing this on a free day?

A link to a newspaper story is good enough thank you.

“Paul claimed a political agenda in the first three days of Telegraph reporting”.

If you take the time to view his BBC interview; he claims a strong political agenda” but he makes no mention of your “first three days of Telegraph reporting” comment.

“Sheer nonsense, pure happenstance that having all expenses and having the time to go through them led them to publish only Labour items for the first 3 days”.

Let me offer an opinion on this; they are a business and they decided to maximise their profits.

“The business of business is business”!

This is a quote made by Sam Wanamaker in Superman V; The Quest for Peace, I have a long memory, more on that further down the piece in relation to your “these guys can spot a lie at a thousand paces”.

“Shame on Paul for pointing that out, honestly Paul the way you slavishly follow the party line, is not as obscured as you think just because you have often voted against the government”.

Have you ever had occasion to defend your friends?

“These people are onto your tricks and those you seek to defend, the so called innocent ones”.

Can you give me a link that shows that some sort of due process has occurred and that the innocent ones had been cleared? I haven’t read anything yet so I assume that your comment is subjective opinion and not based on fact.

A person is innocent till proven guilty, a concept I believe in.

“You might delude yourself Paul but these guys can spot a lie at a thousand paces, with their eyes shut,ears stoppered and brains firmly disengaged”.

Unfortunately as a humble Glaswegian I don’t possess such abilities but I can remember Paul Murphy MP stating one thing and Paul Flynn MP stating something different at different times and in different media.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

Jolly Roger

When you run out of ideas, it's time to mock,
As MPs line up in the Telegraph's dock.
The 'Court of Public Opinion' hath spoke,
It's simply gone beyond a joke.
I'm mocked on here and tret like a fool,
When life dealt me a hand, oh so cruel.
I'm gullible too, according to Paul.
I don't think he really gets it at all.
As for Patrick describing me as jealous,
His sock-puppetry seems a tad over-zealous.

My story's been told on here before,
At the constant risk of becoming a bore.
I've been ripped off for benefits and pension,
That Paul has allowed me to occasionally mention.
In fact, if Paul wishes to put me to test,
Just have a word with Cardiff West.
Ask him for the 'official' tip-off,
Has Jolly Roger been subject to Rip-Off?

There's only one answer that he can provide.
It's a great big yes, for which he has no pride.
Consequently and as a matter of fact,
I find it quite galling to find expenses claims packed,
With claims for tellys at quite high prices,
And numerous other extravagant devices.
Cleaning services and fancy chairs.
Talk about taking on graces and airs.

My telly recently gave up the ghost,
I must say I've had it longer than most.
And in order to obtain me some techno parity,
My grand-children have acted from great charity.
They've bought me a telly, slimline, no less.
It doesn't take up much room, just like me, I confess.
So to those detractors who've mocked as I've sobbed,
I wonder how you'd feel if you'd been robbed.

George Laird

Dear Paul

I have no problem with Paul Murphy, Labour MP getting a new boiler if the old one was dangerous, who wouldn't?

It seems reasonable to me.

http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/welsh-politics/welsh-politics-news/2009/05/08/paul-murphy-claimed-3-000-for-boiler-because-water-was-too-hot-91466-23577363/

It was stated in the piece above;

"WELSH Secretary Paul Murphy claimed more than £3,000 on expenses to fit a new boiler because the water was “too hot”.

You claimed in the BBC interview that his boiler had "blown up".

I like people when giving accounts to stick to factual matters. Your comment gives a totally different impression of the situation to the public. I suspect you got a bit carried away with yourself in front of the camera.

How can you get Tory facts correct but Labour facts wrong?

That was why I was prompted to comment on the fact your BBC interview, in my opinion was following a party political line.

Finally, it is a great pity that I would never be considered to work in the independent body overseeing claims. I like investigating and going through everything with a fine tooth comb.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

Kay Tie

"Smearing Paul Murphy, Kevin Brennan and Ian Lucas proves that the Telegraph has a political agenda. they were done over early on. Their details would not merit a mention now compared with the home flippers, the cheats and the crooks."

I am sure the Telegraph have an agenda. It's evidently not a particularly pro-Tory one, though. Maybe it's an anti-grandee one. Maybe it's anti-Cameron. Who knows? The Telegraph editorial is certainly not very enthusiastic about Cameron, and there are definitely pro-Labour staffers (look at what happened over Guido's negotiations with the Telegraph over the McBride emails to see what I mean).

As to why they started small: you don't open with a crescendo if you want people to listen to the rest.

Paul Flynn

Paul Murphy's boiler was 40 years old. He has documents proving it was condemed as dangerous and he was urged to replace. No one willingly goes through the mess and disruption of such work without good reason.

Smearing Paul Murphy, Kevin Brennan and Ian Lucas proves that the Telegraph has a political agenda. they were done over early on. Their details would not merit a mention now compared with the home flippers, the cheats and the crooks.

Paul Flynn

Jolly Roger, you are becoming gullible.


How do MPs expenses come to over £400,000?
Today's Telegraph story is evidence that they have run out of ideas. Employing accountants for this purpose is listed in the Green Book page 29 as 'allowable expenses'. At least 50% of MPs do it. They should attack the Green Book if they want - not those who are doing what they are told to do.

The criticism of travel claims in the Mail is justified. One MP living 11 miles from Westminster claims more than what I claim living 142 miles away. Something wrong there.


patrick

Jolly
Envy is a littleness of soul, which cannot see beyond a certain point, and if it does not occupy the whole space feels itself excluded.

HuwOS

Honestly Paul
as Jolly Roger points out
You've been given a job, the first choice for that job of 16,021 people, you could be claiming a pension but instead keep working.
It's some gravy train you're on alright.


Jolly Roger

Paul, you ask; "who are the others?"
The Telegraph will help you receive your druthers.
It seems your Cabinet friends have been at it again,
Treating the Public purse with disdain.
They're claiming now for a free taxes fix,
To ensure that they pay next to nix.
I'm sure it's all in the spirit of the rules,
To continue to take the public for fools.

The news on your heroine Nadine Dorries,
Is another of today's top stories.
"Nadine bites back" your headline stated,
Now her blog's disappeared, it's been ablated.
The Telegraph's lawyers and the Brothers B,
Are unhappy at what she wrote for us to see.
Apparently one of the 'bones of contention'
Is the adjective 'McCarthyite' which you've chosen to mention.

Is it time to edit this particular
word?
I'd hate to see this blog given the bird.
Is it time to seek some legal advice,
Before they come looking for a slice,
Of the little money that I'm obliged to provide,
To ensure your comfortable gravy train ride.
P.S. thanks for the price of your
TV set.
I'll have to save up a bit more yet.

HuwOS

Yes George of course it makes sense to get a boiler replaced if its just a little hot.
Paul Murphy said
His old boiler was replaced after it was deemed unsafe and could not be repaired.
But he can't fool you can he.
He probably watched the new one being installed gloating at his ability to get it covered on expenses.

And you're absolutely right, who in their right mind would drive and move furniture on a free day rather than waiting in all day or a few days away from home unnecessarily or on a busy working day.
It's not as if there would be days spent travelling down to London otherwise, absolute nonsense excuses.

Paul claimed a political agenda in the first three days of Telegraph reporting.
Sheer nonsense, pure happenstance that having all expenses and having the time to go through them led them to publish only Labour items for the first 3 days.
Shame on Paul for pointing that out,
honestly Paul the way you slavishly follow the party line, is not as obscured as you think just because you have often voted against the government.
These people are onto your tricks and those you seek to defend, the so called innocent ones.
You might delude yourself Paul but these guys can spot a lie at a thousand paces, with their eyes shut,ears stoppered and brains firmly disengaged.

rwendland

I agree with you on Ian Gibson.

The way I look at it is if he had been claiming ACA on his constituency family home it would be unremarkable that his daughter and boyfriend lived there, even though the ACA was part covering costs under current rules.

So I don't really understand why it should be so different that the ACA was part covering costs of daughter and boyfriend at the designated London flat.

As long as he was handling CGT reasonably when later selling the flat to his daughter.

Chris Carter

Judging from these comments, I think it is perfectly safe to say noone is jealous of Anthony Steens house.

George Laird

Dear Paul

"In which television interview did I take a party line?"

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/8049002.stm

The first minute and a half mentions Tory claims only.

At about 50 seconds into the piece you more or less call the Telegraph biased, "very strong political agenda".

Next up it is a defence of Labour MPs.

Is it possible that some MPs have bought plasma televisions and those televisions are not in their london homes?

Ian Davidson Labour MP is currently using this line with regard to furniture.

Apparently he drove 400 miles to deliver furniture to his london flat.

How long does it take to drive a van to london?

8 to 10 hours? It is a van loaded with furniture so he would be lucky to get above 50/60 mph.

He can effectively spend a whole day driving and moving furniture but doesn't have enough time to wait in to get stuff delivered to his London home.

As to Paul Murphy Labour MP; I understand that his boiler didn't "blow up" as you described; he claimed it produced water that was too hot. I am tempted to ask him is there a cold tap next to the hot tap on his various sinks.

As to who are the others, that would take a substantial piece of reading and since I am not the investigator I will leave that to others with papers.

Finally; I understand that Hazel Blears Labour MP stated one thing to the Inland Reveune and the opposite to the Fees Office, this allowed her to avoid paying Capital Gains Tax. She is definately worth an audit by a forensic accountant and the Police in my opinion. She stated that she thought it was important what people thought of her, pity that thought never travelled the distance between one ear to the other before she did it.

As Gordon Brown said what she did was "totally unacceptable".

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

Kay Tie

I don't think John Bercow comes out of the expenses scandal smelling sweetly.

Paul Flynn

In which television interview did I take a party line? I have done about 30 recycling similar messages. I did one on LBC today when I was asked to m ake the case for John Bercow as the future Speaker. that's John Bercow the Tory.

Repeatedly I have said that MPs should be treated in exactly the same way as anyone else. Three appear to have committed fraud. With others paying money back is not evidence of theft or fraud. I do not know of anyone else who has broken the law except allegedly Morley, Chaytor and Chapman. Who are the others?

Paul Flynn

Thanks Patrick and Huw for rising to the poetic challenge of Jolly Roger. Poetry with punch and attitude adorn this site. Other bloggers must be livid,

HuwOS

Moral messages?

Tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands dead, many more maimed in Iraq.
Thousands and tens of thousands dead in Afghanistan.
Real people, real families, men, woman and children, broken bodies, blood, death.
What is the result from our moral electorate.
Re-elect the people responsible.
Even if we don't care about those people whose deaths we are responsible for, even the cost of the projects fail to exercise the British public.

But gosh, from buying a bathplug up to claiming mortgage interest for non existent mortgages, that produces a never ending howl of outrage.
Heads must roll. Jobs must be lost, imprisonment must follow, for we are a just and moral people.

If that is a good example of British Morality then the British people need to get their heads out of their collective rear end.

Paul has acknowledged the worst offenders
and said that not only could legal action occur but that it should occur.
He wants the rules changed for those things that are technically within the rules but clearly against the spirit of them.
He has also defended those who have broken either no rule at all, in letter or spirit
as well as those who have broken rules if we adopt a taliban type interpretation of them.
Nothing for any reasonable person to object to but still the objections come.

Paul is however also concerned with other and arguably more serious waste and political abuse.
Lobbyists paying for access.
Revolving doors between government and industry.
Oversight of government expenditure that goes into multiple billions of pounds of taxpayers money, especially when the rules are broken in what can be seen as government attempting to bypass parliament altogether
in deals with favoured industry.

If taxpayers money misused, interests the taxpayer then we would not have this sole focus on MPs expenses, that we do tells us everything we need to know about people's motives.

It is utterly sickening and I cannot wait until the those of you who are disinterested in anything other than leading a baying attack on all politicians for the crime of being politicians
lose your mob backing as they get back
to watching big brother 24/7 and casting vote after vote for their favourite performer on the latest talent show when they can't be bothered to vote at election time, when its free and actually makes a meaningful difference.


George Laird

Dear Paul

“I am baffled”.

I am baffled too but I am baffled that you in your telly interview decided to go the way of party politics.

You highlighted moats and duck ponds sending the message, ‘hey Tory greed folks, them over there the multimillionaire Tories.

Shame on you and of course tut tut!

Labour MPs’ claiming for non existent mortgages is in my opinion criminal fraud.

I would in the interests of fairness say that this is not just a Labour Party problem.

Andrew Mackay, Tory MP has stepped down before he was thrown out; his wife Julie Kirkbride should be booted out on the street as well over their arrangements. I wonder if they went in front of a Jury would anyone believe their story?

As to the case of Ian Gibson, your pal and Labour MP, if the circumstances of what you have written are 100% accurate then I would say that although the infraction is minor, common sense would dictate that no action is required.

I don’t see having his daughter staying as abuse of the system.

In my opinion you should reframe from the ‘we not as bad as them’ defence, it doesn’t hold traction with the public.

Stealing a little is surely the same mens rea as stealing a lot?

And you not advocating stealing a little is okay are you as a general concept?

In Gibson’s case; I would say that he hasn’t displayed; actus non facit reum nisi mens sit rea or as us common simple folk say; ‘the act does not make a person guilty unless the mind is also guilty’.

Although his infraction is minor; he is not exempt from investigation from the Press. Anyone in Public Office is accountable to the public for those actions that transpire during the term that they serve.

They (MPs') start with a clean sheet and any blotting of their copy book is by their own actions.

I don’t feel Mr. Gibson has anything to worry about.

Finally, you stated;

“Ian’s face is plastered over the front of the Telegraph. Not for his magnificent work in galvanizing parliament on cancer treatment.Nor for leadership of the Commons scientific community".

I would say that good deeds are not a credit bank for doing bad deeds.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

Gareth Williams

Why is it that if I were to commit fraud and thieve something the region of 100,000+, I'd be facing jail time with "bubba".

However, when an MP does it, they can "pay it back" without getting the police involved.

Well done chaps, setting a great moral message to all in this country. Then again, Labour effectively did that with the Gurkhas, lets be fair!

It's an odd world where the Lib Dems and TORIES (lol) are the ones sticking up for minority rights!

HuwOS

You only have to see the tone of contributions here to know where reason and rationality will get you at the moment.

It might be worthwhile preparing a song, some jokes or a dance routine.
Juggling could go down well too.


Tony Sudworth

'but any breach of the rules is minor compared with the outrages of the Tory Grandees'
Nope, is there is a sliding scale here ? Try telling that to HMRC !
This needs to come above tribalism but I read the figures on the top claimers and its clear that neither of the two biggest parties come out of this well
And have a look at the Times today - they reckon 300+ MP's will walk at the next election.

And I still wonder if part of the anger is not just at expenses but the crap conidiotn of the economy, GB taking us into this and the fact that debt will rise hugely over the next year

Paul Flynn

I watch the Hitler film too. It was very disturbing. There is always a fresh way of looking at everything. This was a very thought provoking treatment. But I agree with your point KayTie on mob hysteria. We are in the middle of it.

I have probably mis-calculated on Panorama. My belief was that thing would have quietened down by now and the public would be receptive to serious reforms. That's not so. The item may just add more misery to the load of my fellow MPs. But the double jobbing item is far more serious than the price of a toaster.

The Telegraph campaign will encompass nearly all MPs. The doom-laden atmosphere deepens.

Kay Tie

"on Panorama tomorrow I will make an attempt to steer the attention to the worst excesses of parliamentary life - the revolving door and pensions."

I just watched the first part of the docudrama on the rise of Hitler. Robert Carlyle as Hitler was disturbing. More disturbing was the way that crowds can be steered by demagogues far easier than thoughtful people.

So good luck with that steering: I fear it's not going to be easy (especially with the low standards of the Panorama team who will distort anything you say to fit with their "angle").

patrick

Across my road lies a man on disability
a crippling affair is the claimants probability
God only knows he must be on the mend
as he captains the bowls team every Summer weekend

The builder that came here was up in the air
about civil servants wages 'a disgusting affair'
when it came to the bill it was all of a mash
the payment demmanded half cheque and half cash

The plumber and Gardener need cash in their hand
no doubt for the tax man and the rest of the land
Estate Agents, Bankers , and Solicitors too
are all humble men and virtuous too

The fetish for wealth and obsession with cash
burdens us all in a society called trash
TV 'Celebrities' and sports superstars
are God's chosen ones from Earth up to Mars

Read all about it in the Telegraph
only MPS and Bankers? You're having a laugh!
Corruption is rife in these fraudulent times
Where is the Jesus ? Can't see no signs!

Paul Flynn

I'll check on the price of the telly Roger in my second home . I believe it was £250. If different, I will correct. It might have been less.

My telly at my main home was more than double that. I have never flipped my homes. My London flat has always been my second home

Paul Flynn

A great deal of nocturnal activity from KayTie, Huw and Jolly Roger. Thanks. I have corrected a typo and tried to make my meaning clearer on my last comment.

The level of complaint now is such that almost all MPs will be smeared. There are some crooks who have been exposed. Some MPs are stupid or greedy. That's right. But the great majority are not.

In Wales Paul Murphy, Kevin Brennan and Ian Lucas have been unfairly attacked. There is now a lynch mob mentality to get all MPs. Lynch mobs are now known for their balanced views.

on Panorama tomorrow I will make an attempt to steer the attention to the worst excesses of parliamentary life - the revolving door and pensions.

Jolly Roger

Mornin' Huwey, ya old sock-puppet.
Have you turned into a poetic muppet?
I didn't realise that your literary parameter,
Included the glorious iambic pentameter.
Unfortunately the content is reprehensible,
You attempt to defend the indefensible.
You seek to deny the Public's right to vent,
Their anger at THEIR own Parliament.

As a member of the Public, myself,
And now pretty skint in terms of wealth,
And having my Income Tax doubled,
Believe me, I'm entitled to be troubled.
Ripped off for Pension by political tools,
By failure to abide by another set of 'rules'.
Why should I pay a penny bit,
For televisions and sacks of sh*t.

I'd be grateful if you and Paul would take trouble,
To step from inside your political bubble,
And see what it's like for us folks who are kept in,
A penury that stinks like something you've stepped in.
A lifetime's work, all brought to nought,
By Honourable Members, or so we thought.

HuwOS

I've said it before and I'll say it again
get a grip of something that isn't your pen
Some have disgraced themselves
party and people
Most have done nothing to be attacked by the sheeple.

I hear none attack those who put them in place
no shame do I see on electorates face
Its always those others
"no, honest" we say
"we had nothing to do with them making hay".

We voted for tax cuts and deregulation
with little desire for social migration
We got smiling faces and agreeable talking
no interest in the troubles these people were stalking.
No interest in the thousands of lives taken away
We've had vote after vote and never did say
that we wanted an end to how they are paid.

We said expenses should end and salaries increase?
to cover the needs of the jobs that we lease?
Did we succeed, did we try but fail, DOH!
now I come to think of it, actually, no.

We fell over ourselves to elect the nice man
who believed in belief and in gods holy plan.
That he turned his back on stated positions
to get into power is not supposition
He's been replaced now by the dour scottish man,
but he doesn't smile enough, smile right, no tan.

We are unhappy with our own people's choices
but no blame for ourselves is heard in our voices.

"Whip that man there, he can't be a toiler!
Who had the gall to claim for a boiler?
"Broken" you say "and dangerous too?"
Do you think that we care, what is or not true?

We will scream and we'll howl, don't think that we'll hush
We're determined that all are tarred with the brush
Baying and howling and crying for slaughter
my god pounds worth of 'lectric were used by his daughter.
It's a matter of principles, morals and justice
it's not just us being spiteful
with bad will, all fussed up.

No sense of proportion, no sense of sense
So we'll just keep on going with our vicious nonsense.

We lay down on the floor
with our feet we do drum
it appears we're all toddlers caught up in tantrum.
Like spoilt little brats it's not crime that annoys us
it's that someone got something and that someone was not us.

We have entered the stage of political review
where the height of analysis is
yah
sucks
BOOOO.

Kay Tie

"For the firts three days of the revelations it was Labour Party MPs that were done over."

And since then it's been moats, duck houses and horse sh1t. If anything, it's the Tory grandees that are getting the biggest share of ire. The Daily Mash article we discussed some days ago was spot on. Who knows what agenda the Telegraph is running. Nadine "Mad Nad" Dories had a conspiracy theory on her blog taken down by libel lawyers this weekend.

The rot in politics has been going on for years, before Tony Blair came to power. It acclerated in the Blair years and Brown's promises turned out to be merely platitudes. This is merely a catalyst for years of frustration. To fix it, we need a re-making of the constitution of the country. We need a proper debate on PR, on fixed-term parliaments, on ministers not sitting as MPs, on an elected Lords with proper blocking powers, on powers for select committees.

Rather than take power out of the hands of politicians (and placed in the hands of unaccountable quango managers who have the patronage of the executive) we need more power in the hands of politicians (both nationally and locally) combined with true transparency so that voters have the ultimate control over things that affect their lives.

Duncan

Matthew Parris should know that the public don't choose what goes on the front of the Telegraph. He also accuses the public of generalising all Mps as crooks and then in the next breath accuses us of being a lynch mob. People are quite able to make up their own mind about degrees of crookedness. I think it's fair that MPs suffer a few weeks of bad headlines in return for the years of proclamations about benefits cheats, soft drugs takers, single mothers and so on we've had to endure over the years. Take it on the chin. After all this is about parliament struggling with democracy and openness, view it as cathartic.

Jolly Roger

"Compared with the outrages of the Tory Grandees"?????
I suggest that you have look at these.

TWENTY HIGHEST EXPENSES CLAIMANTS
Total claims 2005-08 (excluding travel)
Liam Byrne £ 478,536 LABOUR
Joan Ryan £ 469,893 LABOUR
Dan Norris £ 450,985 LABOUR
Shahid Malik £ 446,314 LABOUR
Charlotte Atkins £ 443,244 LABOUR
David Wilshire £ 438,377 TORY
Tom Levitt £ 436,686 LABOUR
Diana Johnson £ 436,632 LABOUR
Fabian Hamilton £ 435,999 LABOUR
Jacqui Smith £ 434,909 LABOUR
Margaret Moran £ 434,456 LABOUR
Ian Austin £ 434,409 LABOUR
A. Rosindell £ 434,149 TORY
Andrew George £ 434,062 LIBDEM
Dawn Butler £ 433,865 LABOUR
Roger Godsiff £ 433,298 LABOUR
Tim Farron £ 433,260 LABOUR
Peter Hain £ 431,905 LABOUR
Norman Lamb £ 431,683 LIBDEM
S. Hesford £ 431,527 LABOUR
Source: The Sunday Times 17.05/09


Jolly Roger

Kindly allow me to un-baffle you, Paul,
You just don't seem to get it at all.
We don't give a toss if they're Labour or Tory,
They're equal players in this outrageous story.
The Public's getting mugged on a regular basis,
By MPs who use expenses as a financial oasis.
The Public have simply had enough,
So maybe it's time for US to get tough.

If you've nothing to hide, you've nothing to fear.
That's the mantra that we constantly hear.
Well, it goes for you too, 'though you may not agree.
When was the last time you dealt with the DWP?
Extravagance is not permitted, nor 'mistakes' too.
If you owe them a penny they persecute you.
Sauce for goose is sauce for gander,
I hope this doesn't elevate your dander.

Your pathetic excuse that exes are wages.
And that it's been going on for ages and ages,
Simply exemplifies the 'casual' attitudes,
Confirmed by your defensive platitudes,
Regarding the spending of my cash,
And adding it to your healthy stash.
Just one more thing that's upon my nelly,
Just how much did I pay for your telly?

Paul Flynn

KayTie, the cases of Elliot Morley, David Chaytor and Margaret Moran are the worst of the lot. I have said this before. I have not said it was a campaign against Labour, but I have said the Telegraph are running this with a political agenda which exaggerates LABOUR'S SINS. For the first three days of the revelations it was Labour Party MPs only that were done over, many of them unfairly

Kay Tie

"is minor compared with the outrages of the Tory Grandees.."

.. and the Labour MPs claiming for non-existent mortgage interest, flipping properties and avoiding capital gains tax?

You said this whole scandal was a campaign aimed at Labour. That's been shown to be nonsense. When are you going to stop trying to convince yourself there is a party divide on this and rise above the tribalism?

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