Corruption: alive and kicking in democratic Britain

May 13, 2009 at 20:32 2 comments

parliamentThe Houses of Parliament is viewed as the foundation of modern-day democracy. But in recent months, the truth behind the individuals who are elected to manage this democracy is now beginning to leak out. In fact, it’s flooding out like a burst dam.

Instead of managing a country in the grip of one of the deepest economic crises in recent history, our politicians are in-fighting about who spent what money and where?

So far, many people are seen to be brought to task over this issue including the Speaker of the House, Michael Martin,  for not introducing reform for MP’s expenses; Health Minister Phil Hope for his second home allowances of ££41,709 ; and Tory MP, Alan Haselhurst, for reportedly claiming £142,000 on his country house £12,000 for gardening bills. The list goes on. Really, it does.

It’s very interesting to see that if a developed country has problems like this, there may be an investigation into the dealings of the politicians for their dealings. They may even get their knuckles rapped. But there is rarely an investigation into the fundamental reasons why the problem occurred in the first place. Then everyone moves on and forgets about the whole thing.

When money disappears from the public coffers in a developing country and a named individual is seen to be somehow linked to it, that individual is called ‘corrupt’. If a government is riddled with inexplicable expenses claims, the government is called ‘corrupt’. But when political parties are all behaving in such a way, that parliament and the country in which is resides is called ‘corrupt’. If that be the case, I believe I would be justified in calling the UK system of government as corrupt.

Is it a wonder that the turnout for general elections has been continuously falling in the past three decades? Believe it or not, I do not blame the politician. All they are doing is ‘trying to survive’ within a system that allows them to behave in this manner.

The idea of having a democracy is to ensure an elected representative is the voice of her constituency in a national forum. However, no matter how much of a genius the elected representative is, it is impossible for an individual human to be all things to all people. And we know what geniuses our politicians are, don’t we? 

The current MP’s expenses debacle is not new. MEP’s have been having their fair share of debate over their expenses for several years.  This fiasco will not disappear. We don’t need a reformation of MP’s expenses. We need a complete overhaul of the way our democracy is created by eliminating a system that rewards corruption and lack of integrity through monetary means.

So long as you have a governmental system that operates with a vast number of viewpoints AND is particularly based on a monetary system, corruption is inevitable and will be rife. Furthermore, the views of the general public will be ignored. There is and has never been a democracy that has not been corrupt. Politicians have been infamous for ignoring the people they represent.  In the end, we need a system which truly represents the voice of the people and not the views of tainted politicians whose only objective is to maximise their four/five-year stay of power.

Finally, MP’s should be paid a fair wage relative to managers in other industries….because that’s exactly what they are – managers. It has been a few years since the Houses of Parliament enjoyed a true democratic leader that the entire country was behind.

Harun Rabbani

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Entry filed under: Leadership. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Joe Gregory  |  May 18, 2009 at 07:52

    Good post Harun – I think it’s fair to say that almost ALL government systems are corrupt – they take money from society’s producers by force (threat of violence/actual violence) and then spend it how they like (typically on destructive things like wars and or more tools for getting compliance from their own people – CCTV, new victimless crimes). I’d be happy to hear if anyone can show me one government system in operation today that doesn’t heavily penalise life’s value-adders, unfarily reward life’s takers and use it’s “elected” power to keep it’s people “in line” – I don’t think one exists!

    Reply
  • 2. humantwopointzero  |  May 18, 2009 at 21:00

    The funny thing is Joe, the whole concept of taxation in Europe started many centuries ago. Do you know for what purpose? To fund warfare. The percentage of tax was low – between 1% and 2% – of an individual’s income.

    Today, people who are adding true value to the economy, are paying up to 40% (soon 50% in the UK), much of which funds warfare.

    Reply

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