REFORM OF PARLIAMENT AND PARLIAMENTARIANS
Why do we have to reform parliament and parliamentarians?
Our parliamentary system does very little to ensure that only the very best people ever gain entry to it, nor does it hold those who do to particularly high standards. The fact that these individuals are then remunerated at levels that often bear little correlation to their skills, experience or performance only further insults the taxpayer, who will routinely work thrice as hard for half as much. These rarefied conditions enjoyed by our parliamentarians, who also stipulated them, must be harmonised with the real world conditions that they themselves have created but do not share in. The following items discuss the extent of the problem as it is at this present time.
1 – Parliamentarians wield powers that allow them to entirely manipulate the infrastructure of 60 million lives, yet the only vetting and screening they are subjected to is effectively an acting audition.
2 – Too many of our parliamentarians have been drawn to their role because it is a position of power, status and high remuneration, rather than having a desire to serve those who pay their salaries.
3 – Far too many of our parliamentarians have no idea what the UK actually is because they have effectively never lived in it. The path from school, to university, to job without interview, to parliamentarian has become far too common, and is proving disastrous for our country.
4 – Being a parliamentarian is not currently an exclusive role, as many are working second, and even third, jobs that, in some instances, may present a conflict of interests.
5 – The overall remuneration package currently enjoyed by parliamentarians is excessive given the function they perform, which some have referred to as part time.
6 – Contrary to the self interested spin wielded by many parliamentarians, there is no evidence that high remuneration leads to high quality employees nor high quality workmanship. In fact most evidence actually suggests the opposite is true.
7- Parliamentarians expenses are still not fully resolved, many years after the scandal that revealed the extent to which they were abusing the taxpayer.
8 – Second homes for parliamentarians is an enormous waste of taxpayers money and, not unsurprisingly, it is difficult to obtain full transparency in this area from parliament.
9 – Parliamentarians have presided over a nation that has systematically denied almost all of us a final salary pension scheme, yet the extraordinarily generous final salary pension scheme enjoyed by parliamentarians endures at our expense.
10 – Parliamentarians are remunerated at levels way in excess of the earnings of most members of the public, yet the public are still subsidising many parliamentary perks.
11 – Many parliamentarians have opened themselves up to accusations of nepotism and violating conflicts of interest by employing family members at interesting levels of pay given their skills and qualifications.
The general direction of reform must be one of increasing standards and decreasing of overly generous pay and conditions whilst simultaneously bringing an end to the era of parliamentarians marking their own homework.
Detailed reform principles
A – All candidates wishing to stand in a general election will be required to undergo, at their own expense, a series of assessments designed to determine their fitness to hold office. The H.O.C.D.E will develop these assessments, but the areas of focus should include character, psychological health, intellect and knowledge. Given the far reaching powers held by parliamentarians, particular attention should be given to screening for serious mental deviations such as narcissism, sociopathy and psychopathy.
B – Background screening should be performed on candidates that satisfy the fitness assessment, with emphasis placed on significant inconsistencies between words and/or actions.
C – Parliamentarians salaries should be set at 3x the minimum wage (x5 for ministers) and only rise when the minimum wage does. All other parts of the parliamentary package should be consistent with a mid range public servant, including pension and annual leave.
D – Parliamentarians should be prohibited from hiring friends or family members of their own family or, of other parliamentarians
E – No parliamentarian should be subsidised by the taxpayer, either directly or indirectly.
F – All additional jobs will be prohibited with the exception of charitable work in the community which shall be mandated for 52 days per year. Ministers would be excluded from this requirement.
G – Parliamentarians will no longer be able to claim for second homes and will instead be accommodated in self catering, block accommodation, of 3 star grading, placed in easy commuting distance of parliament. Alternatively a customised sovereign class vessel could be moored on the River Thames (see additional Prybar recommendations),
H – All affairs relating to the renumeration of parliamentarians, including that of expenses, will be assumed by the H.O.C.D.E.
We must, for the very first time, connect parliamentarians with the general public rather than have them looking down at them from a platform built using their money. These measures therefore are a necessary first step in rebuilding trust and respect.
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