MP’s Pay: How will an 11% pay rise help Voters when we aren’t exactly getting value for money now?

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Would you like a pay rise? Yes? You will probably agree that most people would. But should our MP’s really be getting an 11% ‘salary’ rise in order that their wages reflect the work that they do and the level of responsibility that they have?

If MP’s were actually undertaking and carrying out a ‘job’ in it’s truest and therefore ‘functional’ sense, I think I would probably agree that they should be salaried at a higher level than they already are. But MP’s are not actually ‘doing a job’ in the sense that the IPSA Consultation which has been carried out would suggest.

It is the very fact that becoming an MP is now seen as being a ‘job’ that has facilitated the rise of the ‘career politician’ and much of the difficulty and disenfranchisement which faces voters as the result of electing people whos aim is little more than to turn up for ‘work’, promote themselves to the media or get promoted as they focus on the date of the next Election, rather than go out and give a real and meaningful voice to the people who put them there.

The Legislation which governs Elections should be the biggest clue to anyone seeking elected office that they are not applying for a job, but a serious responsibility.

The Representation of the People Act says in four simple words everything that any existing or aspiring politician needs to understand about what they are or have undertake on behalf of others. But of course party politics has created a situation where would-be politicians do indeed ‘apply’ for seats, and when they are fortunate enough to be selected for one which any of the parties can consider to be ‘safe’, they will indeed find themselves with a job for life – just as long as they do what the party wants and don’t rock the boat by doing something trivial like putting constituency matters first.

This is simply wrong. Neither politician nor their respective parties should be able or feel morally correct in treating the roles and responsibilities of politicians as a job – whatever level of Government to which the politician may have been elected.

Arguments are of course made that the remuneration for MP’s needs to be higher in order to attract those who have better knowledge, experience or indeed exposure to life to the roles. But the danger here is that a faulty and already self-serving system will just be enhanced and propagated further with even more inexperienced and unworldly applicants who lack the wherewithal and real world understanding to represent all others adequately, jumping on board the gravy train – perhaps even earlier than many of them are attempting to do so even now.

Politics should be recognised as being vocational service to others, rather than a professional and self-serving occupation. It would thereby extend a welcome to those who can best represent others by understanding, communicating and fighting to address real – rather than perceived need, whether it be at family, street, community, town, city, county, country or international level.

Very few of our politicians currently even attempt to take this approach and thereby put the people who they were Elected to represent first.  The result is openly marked by just how out-of-touch and aloof policy making has become.

Whilst pay remains both a priority and incentive for politicians, none of us will have any chance of receiving the best representation that we possibly can.

Put simply, politicians weren’t and aren’t elected to do a job. Politicians are elected to assume and carry out the responsibilities of representing and addressing need.

Nonetheless, it is just a job that most of them are doing and how will an 11% pay rise help the Electorate when we aren’t exactly getting value for money now?

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