Yesterday’s parade of ermine and tiaras at Westminster (and that was just Peter Mandelson), highlighted that we have a dead government walking. Or lumbering towards an inevitable defeat. Most of the announcements were re-wordings of previous policies that still haven’t been implemented, despite 12 years of Labour promises and guarantees.
There was no mention of cleaning up the expenses system and parliament in general, at least not until the government was forced into a U-turn this morning by saying that this will now become a priority. There was no mention of how to pay for the new flagship elderly care bill – maybe OAPs will be shipped en masse to Spain to retire? There was no mention of how to reduce a £200bn budget deficit or how to finance an estimated £900bn of civil service pensions.
Six months is a long time in politics. But precious little will get done in SW1. If reports are to be believed there are between 33 and 71 actual days of debating between now and the end of May. That is next to no time to tackle major problems such as elderly care, the NHS or education. But it is plenty of time to implement a new expenses system and prosecute those who tried to buy duck houses and free porn from our hard-earned tax. And that would give us a clean system going into the election.
I would wager that most people intending to vote next May have made up their mind. There is little Labour can do to convince any sane person to give them another chance. The next six months are going to be wasted in Westminster because the government is tirelessly hanging on to their right to govern for the maximum 5 years. It’s a shame Her Maj (the real one, not Peter Mandelson) didn’t deviate from the script yesterday and announce that in the interests of her people, she was dissolving parliament forthwith and we could all have a new government for Christmas.
There are going to be six month’s of sniping, back-biting and murky revelations (and that’s just about Peter Mandelson). Can we please just draw a line under the tawdry mess and get the voting over with? It will save time and money that could be put to better use in sorting out the ruinous state that the country is in.