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Do MP's do a good job of running this country

(39 Posts)
cheelu Wed 16-Jan-13 00:25:13

My problem with MP's is some of them are making decisions on subjects they know nothing about. For eg the Prime Minister that we have now, I dont know much about him because as said I dont really follow any party apart from Green Party but he is making major decisions and making massive changes to poor people financial situations, instead of teaching them how to fish he is removing the only fish in the water that are left, In other words pulling the carpet from undrneath them but offering no way out... If he is trying to make cuts why doesnt he start with the people he employs that receive ridiculous salaries. I dont wish to offend anyone and I may be ignorant to other stuff but it is my laymans humble opinion..

FlicketyB Wed 16-Jan-13 07:53:43

The sad fact is that the amount of money saved by reducing the salaries of a relatively small number, but high profile, well paid people will be but a drop in the mountain of our debt. The mountain we have to reduce means that everyone has to be hit by reductions in income and benefits. It is like an individual deeply in debt hoping that by not buying a weekly mars bar they can reduce their debt when in fact they need to halve their energy bill with all that goes with that to even begin to cut their indebtedness.

This is why I, for one, feel so uncomfortable with the coalition's pledge not to do anything to the benefits attached to the state pension in this Parliament.

NfkDumpling Wed 16-Jan-13 07:54:02

I think we all have very different opinions on how the country should be run depending on our circumstances and background. Being an MP or prime minister must be a hell of a job and anyone with any sense wouldn't touch it with a barge pole. So perhaps we are doomed to have leaders who are all ego, have thick skins and tunnel vision. They also have to contend with the archaic thinking of the civil service - and that's the biggest problem - IMHO.

Lilygran Wed 16-Jan-13 08:39:58

It depends what you mean by 'MPs', I think. If you mean does the present system of government in this country work, I think it's a good, safe system with some problems over the present situation over the House of Lords. Some people might also feel the electoral system needs reform but when we had a vote on it, the majority rejected the change offered. If you mean is the present government doing a good job, IMO they aren't. But come election time, we can all express our opinions in the ballot box and in the meantime, we can make them clear in a number of ways. There are a lot of forceful opinions in the 'Politics' section of this forum!

Greatnan Wed 16-Jan-13 09:08:42

I agree that reducing the top rate of tax from 50% to 45% will not make a huge difference in revenue, but it sends entirely the wrong signal to all those people who have lost their jobs or face a cut in benefits. Clearly, we are not 'all in it together' and I think that phrase will haunt Cameron for ever.

Riverwalk Wed 16-Jan-13 09:16:58

Rather like Norman Lamont's 'a price worth paying' when referring to rising unemployment and recession in the early 90s.

annodomini Wed 16-Jan-13 10:05:46

In my days as a party activist, I came across quite a lot of MPs (plus a couple of MEPs) and interviewed many more who wanted to be on the candidates' list. They were mainly decent, intelligent and well-intentioned people, most of whom had considerable experience of running local councils. This, you'd think, would be a good apprenticeship for 'running the country'. However, the people at the top of the three main parties in Parliament have never been grass-roots politicians. They have risen through the rarefied atmosphere of the 'corridors of power', seldom having contact with the needs and aspirations of real people. Some people go into politics with the aim of running the country; most of them want to represent the interests of their constituents. I do not want to be led by politicians whose main aim is power, but that's what we've got nowadays. The others are trying their best to represent their voters, but in Parliament are just voting fodder for their leaders.

Lilygran Wed 16-Jan-13 10:10:30

The real problem with government in this country is the lack of interest and involvement on the part of the electorate. Turn out at General Elections is often under 50% and even lower for local elections. When I used to go out canvassing (a thankless task) I was always astonished and disheartened by responses like, 'I'm not interested in politics'. And if you watch lots of quiz games on TV (sad, I know) it's the questions on political matters that often floor even apparently well-informed people.

Greatnan Wed 16-Jan-13 10:22:45

Here's an example, Lily: On Pointless, they were asked to name Neville Chamberlain from his photograph. The man got it right, but when he said to his partner that he thought it was a Prime Minister during WWII, she ventured 'Gladstone?'

Movedalot Wed 16-Jan-13 10:35:29

I'm not sure that things have changed much during my adulthood. I remember challenging Roy Jenkins on something he had said and his response could only be described as a tantrum. I think we get less political scandals these days when the worst we can come up with is a politician swearing at a policeman!

Governments may change but the civil servants who adivise them reamain the same and presumably have the same prejudices and preferences whatever the government.

There will always be those who say the govenment don't understand a sector of the public but how can anyone really understand how another person lives be it with a lot more money or a lot less? When that thing about the price of a pint of milk came up neither DH or I knew the answer!

I think that probably most MPs start of altruistic but not all. Until we retired we had only contacted our MP once and he was brilliant. Since retirement I have written to my MP several times and she is a waste of space when she has no reason to be complacent as she is new.

Ansering the OP, probably not but would any other system work better?

gillybob Wed 16-Jan-13 12:52:32

In my VHO there are just far too many MP's. Why do we need so many?

Also this phrase "we are all in in together". We are clearly not all in in together. How can some poor sole who has lost their job, has a family to feed and may lose their home be suffering the same as someone sitting on a fortune or an MP for that matter?

Sadly I no longer have any faith in any of the parties or their leaders.

cheelu Wed 16-Jan-13 13:01:33

HERE HERE gillybob!!

BAnanas Wed 16-Jan-13 13:37:17

I would like to see more MPs come from ordinary walks of life and who have worked at proper jobs before they put themselves up for MPS. Less public school boys please, then we wouldn't get the crass comments such as the much reviled "we are all in this together". Also don't foist youngsters from the political elite on the voting public, such as Georgia Gould, who was helicoptered into a very working class seat and the candidate who I gather had been putting a lot of work in that constituency was turfed out. Thankfully she didn't win the nomination, because she was about 23. Another prospective candidate for the Labour party I believe was Tony Benn's granddaughter who was an 18 year old sixth former at the time she was out doorstepping. Who in their right mind wants people who have had no experience of life representing them even if they have very good intentions. Personally I'm just sick of the whole political class with the exception of a few mavericks such as Frank Field, but they are always consigned to the back benches anyway.

gillybob Wed 16-Jan-13 14:06:41

Thanks for support Cheelu smile

Totally agree BAnanas I think there should be a minimum age in which anyone can expect to be an MP. What life experience does a 23 year old have to enable him or her to effectively help run the country?

vampirequeen Wed 16-Jan-13 14:31:13

I've just received my ATOS 'we'll prove you're well enough to work form'. You need a degree in linguistics to complete it. To me it proves that the government and the civil servants who run this country don't care how the rest of us live as long as we cost as little as possible.

celebgran Wed 16-Jan-13 14:48:20

wrong person to ask, our mp Douglas Carswell has let us down rather badly, see other thread.

He came over as wanting to try and help but as soon as we asked him to finish what he started o No, that was that and it was not necessary for him to send us such a rude letter.

i do believe he is more active than most mps and is what they called a mover and shaker, he does not agree with the government if he does not is not a yes person.

on the whole we probably have too many claiming far too much!!

Ariadne Wed 16-Jan-13 17:55:11

Surely the answer to this rather vague questions is either "Yes" or "No". Yawn...

Ana Wed 16-Jan-13 17:59:21

Ariadne, that bracing Devon air certainly seems to be making you very forthright these days! grin

Ariadne Wed 16-Jan-13 18:03:58

Mmmm, I'd noticed. Maybe feel more confident about saying what I feel as well as think!

Ana Wed 16-Jan-13 18:05:39


Ariadne Wed 16-Jan-13 18:42:30


Ariadne Wed 16-Jan-13 18:42:51

OK grin

absent Wed 16-Jan-13 18:52:29

The short answer is no. I suspect that the long answer is no as well. MPs per se have very little power these days. They sit on the back benches – when they bother to turn up to Parliament – but are herded into the lobbies like sheep by the Whips on any votes that count. The PM and Cabinet do the serious stuff. Does anybody believe, for example, that George Osborne has a clue about economics or Michael Gove has a clue about education? And that's just two of them. The Quiet Man is busy demolishing the welfare state and Jeremy Hunt – homeopathy fan – is carrying on what Andrew Lansley started with the destruction of the NHS. Now they are talking about giving private health providers – profit-making companies – exemption from corporation tax to make a "level playing field" with the NHS, which is and always has been a service.

Greatnan Wed 16-Jan-13 19:09:55

Private Eye is trying to find out which MPs have got vested interests in private health providers, possibly through their relations or friends.

nanaej Wed 16-Jan-13 20:28:03

When people say they are not interested in politics it is not true. Almost everything they encounter day-to-day and moan about or praise is a result of a political decision. What they are not interested in any more are party politics and the tedious, personal attack, adversarial style...slagging off the opposition, blaming the opposite bench for problems rather than properly debated issues based on research, facts and reasoned argument or offering constructive options.

I also think that the move to cabinet style of running local councils has limited opportunities for potential national politicians to learn the art of debate, the ability to properly research and of the feeling that 'they can make a difference' to issues they really care about.

I am sure this has cut down on meeting time etc but most decisions are made outside of any council meetings which are now just the public process of rubber stamping decisions. This 'behind closed doors' politics is another of the reasons the general public are less engaged with political decisions as it all feels like a 'fait accompli'