how could we get better politicians?

#1
There is a piece in the Guardian today by jailed former Russian oligarch and now 'Prisoner of Concience' Mikail Khodorkovsky in which he outlines his hopes that recent electoral reform in his country bought about by the public outrage over the previous election could one day herald an era with
'the brightest and the best coming forward as candidates for public office'.

Blimey, says I, what a happy thought. Lord alone knows if it will ever happen in Russia, but it's certainly not happening here in the UK.

So here's the question, having binned our current lot for being mired in mediocrity how would you change the system so that the brightest and the best might give even a passing thought to becoming an MP?

I don't know where our national brains trust is, probably in the City somewhere, or in the Infantry, but all the really clever people seem to have given Parliament a very wide berth, leaving us with a distinctly average gene pool from which to select leaders for the big jobs in the cabinet.

Halve the number of MPs and triple their wages? Bin the party whip system or have a local 'primary' system where you have a choice of candidates for your preferred party instead of the usual twat that has stitched it up with the local association?

How could we attract our 'brightest and best' to work for us?
 
#2
Anyone who seeks power should automatically be barred on the grounds of unsuitability!

Prevent anyone from standing for election until they are 40yrs old.

Make MPs pass annual tests equivalent to MATTS where they demonstrate that they have a working, moral compass.
 
#3
Well, you could start by rifling through the contents of Vertical_Gyro's wheelie-bin.
 
#5
Minimum age limit.

Some sort of 'diverse background' requirements (ie not all of them career policy wonks or local authority workers).

Pay low enough not to attract people doing it through greed, but high enough so that people without private incomes can sit.

Massive slashing of the amounts parties are permitted to spend on media and advertising, along with a maximum contribution limit under ten thou per year.

Severe (severe like 5+ years) penalties for any kind of dodgy financial transaction, this sort of thing (payment of 'advance' for never-written book) for example: The schools crusade that links Michael Gove to Rupert Murdoch | Politics | The Guardian
 
#6
I suppose you could have minimum standards based on their ability to practice what they preach.

Any Tory to have made a personal fortune of at least £5m before being allowed to apply, and any Labour candidate must have bought a major company to its knees through union activities.

But it still doesn't offer anything to prompt really good people to apply, though.
 

TheIronDuke

ADC
Book Reviewer
#7
Bin the party whip system or have a local 'primary' system where you have a choice of candidates for your preferred party instead of the usual twat that has stitched it up with the local association?
That would be a start. Labour hot-shots parachuted into safe seats in the north east include Tony Blair, Peter Mandleson and Stephen Byers, none of whom previously had any interest in their constituencies. I am sure the Tory's and the Toxic-Dems are equally guilty.

I'd agree on th e40 year old minimum thing. Time was people got into politics following a career (capitalist or socialist). Now they do a year in a lobbying / PR firm, work as a researcher for some MP then straight in at the deep end. Cameron and Blair have not done a days proper work in their lives.
 

Alsacien

MIA
Moderator
#9
Benevolent dictatorships seem to be the way forward, with the option to replace them with a new guy nominated by a peoples committee when they kick the arse out of it....
 
#10
.....................'the brightest and the best coming forward as candidates for public office'.

..............So here's the question, having binned our current lot for being mired in mediocrity how would you change the system so that the brightest and the best might even give a passing thought to becoming an MP?

I don't know where our national brains trust is, probably in the City somewhere, or in the Infantry, .........How could we attract our 'brightest and best' to work for us?
Well most of the current batch who have prior military service seem to be ex-Infantry so that seems to blow your argument of where to find the brightest and best out of the water.


But back on thread..

Simple and proper power of re-call. If your MP fails to serve those who elected him, then he has to face re-election.

It would get rid of the Party- serving and self-serving hypocrites currently filling the HoC. It would weaken both the local party and Whip control and return power to the people. None of the Parties, who all supported it when they wanted our votes, now want power of re-call - why? Because it will force them to change their ways.
 
M

Mr_Tigger

Guest
#12
1. Bring in a codified constitution that explicitly limits the role of government and sets entrenched legal barriers. Place a constitutional limit on peacetime spending and borrowing to **** the demogoguges over come election time. 2. Kill all the no-good lefties. 3. Invade France (any excuse obviously).
 

TheIronDuke

ADC
Book Reviewer
#15
Simple and proper power of re-call. If your MP fails to serve those who elected him, then he has to face re-election.
"The motion before the house is that MPs work a 40 hour week for the people who elected them, have their expenses and free foreign trips scrutinised by a local committee who has the right to de-select the MP should agreed standards not be met. Ayes to the right, noes to the left".

Anyone in any doubt as to how that one would work out?
 
#17
Personally I think the following

1. No candidate can be allowed to stand for a constituency unless they have lived there for 10 years minimum
2. No candidate under 35 allowed to stand.
3. Candidates must have 10 years of employment
4. Wages to be set at £60k only expenses are travelling and overnight accommodation
5. MP is your sole job until unelected.
6. You must complete a minimum number of hours in the chamber per week (40 say)
 
#18
Do we actually need politicians at all? What, exactly, do they add to the process.

I get blank stares when I try to explain UK democracy to a Chinese audience - "So, let me get this straight. You elect people who know nothing about the portfolio they're overseeing and then you complain about a lack of expertise. Oh, they have a team of experts to advise them? Why not elect the experts, then?"

Why not, indeed.
 
#19
Do we actually need politicians at all? What, exactly, do they add to the process.

I get blank stares when I try to explain UK democracy to a Chinese audience - "So, let me get this straight. You elect people who know nothing about the portfolio they're overseeing and then you complain about a lack of expertise. Oh, they have a team of experts to advise them? Why not elect the experts, then?"

Why not, indeed.

We had one it was called a Monarchy, but some prat screwed it up.
 
#20
Personally I think the following

1. No candidate can be allowed to stand for a constituency unless they have lived there for 10 years minimum
2. No candidate under 35 allowed to stand.
3. Candidates must have 10 years of employment
4. Wages to be set at £60k only expenses are travelling and overnight accommodation
5. MP is your sole job until unelected.
6. You must complete a minimum number of hours in the chamber per week (40 say)
Change 'chamber' to 'constituency' and you might have something. They suffer at the moment from collective amnesia over who they actually work for, it'd be good to keep it at the forefront of their minds.
 

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