Monday, December 24, 2007

What's Gordon Up To?

Call me a cynic but I wonder why this story about MPs' pay has come out now (Gordon has been sitting on the SSRB report for months) and why No 10 is briefing so actively. After all, the only MPs who have seen the SSRB report are the relevant Ministers and (possibly) the HoC Commission members. The simple explanation is that GB is spinning to appear tough and consistent in the context of the police debacle.

There is, however, a more machiavellian explanation. The Guardian says that the SSRB wants to make the parliamentary pension scheme in some way less generous while raising salaries. (Higher MP contributions?). I suspect the last thing GB wants is to reopen the entire issue of public sector pension schemes. So if Gordon rubbishes the SSRB on pay, he could establish the principle that he isn't bound by their recommendations and quietly ditch any proposals they have on pensions. No 10 doesn't seem to be briefing out anything that the SSRB says about pensions, so if they do recommend some tightening, MPs will be taken aback and possibly vote in greater numbers for the government line as least worst option. Victory for battling Gordon!!!!! As I said, call me a cynic...

11 comments:

Man in a Shed said...

John Major kept ministerial salaries down ( did he even refuse to accept [part of his - I can't remember clearly on that ). Much good it did him in the end.

There is an underlying issue here. The fact that the political professionals who run the country have the best pension scheme in the country paid for by everyone else - many of whom will have to die before they can afford to retire.

That's a rich vein of political resentment for someone to mine.

David said...

Iain,

I just thought it was a rather sad attempt to get to the top of the final political news cycle for a few days. So the story 'Brown is a nice guy who doesn't want any more of your money', will be stuck on top of all the Brown-loving media outlets until Thursday.

Trumpeter Lanfried said...

Just the sort of smart-arse scheme he might dream up, only to find it blow up in his face.

Anonymous said...

There is no way Labour can win with this chump monkey. A populist unpopular monkey. Most Mp's know that wages are not high enough at present for us to get a high enough quality. let alone asking them to be kept down. We do not want a bunch of uneducated brain dead monkeys who follow what ever the fuhrer asks. Everyone in business knows decent people do not want to become MP's. Because the pay is not high enough. This will stir up hatred for the PM on the labour benches and the tories should stick it into him. The dumb ones will be like sheep and follow their leader. The bright ones such as Mr Pound, or I expect Mr Clarke will say what they want. Get rid of this miserly tyrant. Labour MP's stand up against his tyrant.

mitch said...

If this is his towering intellect at work then he is deluded.His credibility is shot because whatever he says nobody thinks thats what he means.

Anonymous said...

Very Jim Hacker,

"No Bernard", " Im going to give them a diaster today, and a triumph tomorrow"

The Huntsman said...

He will profess opposition to it if only to enable him to recite the mantra which with him is particularly psittacine: "Not me, Guv!" as the political elite vote themselves yet more grub to go into the trough.

Salaries ought to be kept low to deter those who would make this a career rather than a calling to Public Service.

Sadly, piggies will be piggies.

Happy Xmas to all and sundry. Whether in agreement or opposition I have enjoyed the polemics though perhaps not the scatology of some commenters.

Though I disagree with you from time to time and live under Richard North's Umbrellog, I think the material you bring us remains highly useful and stimulating and so I offer good wishes for 2008 and hope with most of your correspondents for the damnation of our enemies!

Anonymous said...

It is state funding of political parties.

10,000 per head per year means 3.5 mil for 350 MPs.

Broon's talking bawgie said...

I'd just like to congratulate Huntsman on getting the word "psittacine" into Iain's blog.

John M Ward said...

One possible reason behind this announcement now is the disquiet within the Parliamentary Labour Party regarding Gordon B, and they/he might also have got wind of the latest poll that doesn't make for good reading from Labour's point of view.

GB needs some good personal news coverage now, and he knows it. He also knows that, beyond this, he will have to work really hard if he is to have any hope of remaining as PM beyond next May/June. Every new poll from now on will probably be bad for Labour, and will need offsetting by some well-timed "good news", even if it has to be manufactured.

Anonymous said...

The Police have the most generous pension scheme in the country. Kind of ironic in a way...