Tuesday, August 25, 2009

MPs: it’s them or us

Hadleigh Roberts looks at the Tory plan to cut the number of MPs. He is, I’m very sorry to say, sceptical.

Now, we all know that MPs are basically a cross between terrorists, paedophiles, bogus asylum seekers and reality TV contestants, so obviously anything that reduces their number is a Good Thing.

Honourable members: They’re laughing because they’ve just burgled your house and scrawled ‘YOR MUMS A SLAGG’ on the walls. Under the new proposals, they will be made into glue.

But here are some other reasons to back this splendid policy:

  • Government ministers, of whatever party, are just too damned competent. Quite frankly, they’re showing the rest of us up. Cutting the number of MPs will shrink the pool of talent from which ministers are picked, thus lowering their average quality.

  • Legislation in this country is just far too good. How can we possibly have a thriving civil society when all our laws are so perfect that there’s nothing to protest against? Fewer MPs will mean less legislative scrutiny and thus shoddier bills passed.

  • The Commons exerts way too much control over the government, making it hard to get anything done without having to have ‘consultations’ and ‘compromises’ with elected representatives. Disgusting. Getting rid of some MPs will make them collectively less able to hold the executive to account, thus giving us the thrilling smack of firm government.

  • It’s much too easy to get to see your local MP when you have a problem that they might be able to help with. The casework they do, far more than the welfare state, serves to destroy our self-reliance and shackle our sense of enterprise. A cull of MPs will mean bigger constituencies and less time for each MP to spend on individual constituents, thus making us get on our bikes, pull our socks up and stand on our own two feet. Though not necessarily in that order.

House holed: The empty benches of the new slimline Commons will in fact be less of a waste of space than the feckless chancers that once sat there.


Neil Harding said...

Cameron only wants to reduce the number of MPs so as to increase gerrymandering possibilities.

The Tories cannot win in urban areas, so they need to make constituencies so large that enough seats become marginals where urban voters are slightly outnumbered by surburban and rural voters.

Add in a bit of strategic boundary manipulation - like abolishing the boundary commission's current remit to draw boundaries within administrative, county and geographical boundaries (another Tory manifesto proposal) and there you go - even bigger Tory majorities on just 35% of the vote and a 55% turnout - just you see what happens in 2014. Democracy eh?

Hadleigh Roberts said...

Gosh you're right! Why didn't I think of that? Sigh.

Great post!