Wednesday, 13 May 2009

PMQ's: Cameron loses context

. A very subdued PMQ's as has already been noted; Brown trapped in a technocratic mentality where everything has to be decided by committee while Cameron does look increasingly prime ministerial and decisive. However, Brown did make one telling point about keeping the expenses debate in context, something that has been totally absent from this debate as the 'braying mob' mentality has increasingly taken hold. This has been shown in the fact that a number of the stories that have emerged are being contradicted by the established facts; which is a reminder every story does have two sides. We are not seeing both sides in the media coverage currently.

Cameron rightly called for expenses to be published online for all MP's but then wandered off on a tangent about Communications Allowance. This demonstrates a worrying mindset in itself and the Labour MP's heckles of 'but your a millionaire' have a point. When the shakedown occurs do we really want a Parliament that only people already wealthy can afford to be in? Democracy does cost money and there has to be a basic recognition of that fact by the general public; this is the danger of the mentality that has taken hold, that the demands will become increasingly unreasonable and they in fact strike at the very core of the system of having a representative democracy as much as abuses.

In pandering to that mentality Cameron has once again shown his rather popularist colours, the part I least like about him as a politician. Clegg meanwhile focused on expenses and focused rightly on MP's actually making profit on second homes, as opposed to actually having them when their constituencies are hundreds of miles away. The form that accommodation takes is open to discussion but the basic fact that MP's need a second accommodation doesn't change. It is time to moderate the tone of this debate; it is time for context but David Cameron has clearly lost his context.

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