I know I am not exactly the most highly intellectual person on the Planet - and what most people understand to be "Logic" has never been my strong point - but yesterday's events in the House of Commons have got me totally and utterly confused. That is apart from getting me seriously angry at the degree of contempt some of our democratically elected "Representatives" in Westminster treat anybody who is not like them.
Let me get this straight for a minute - Dennis Skinner gets asked to leave the Chamber of the House of Commons merely for refusing to withdraw his comment about "Dodgy Dave" in reference to the Prime Minister??? Yet Alan Duncan gets to write off just about the entire UK electorate in one offensive sentence - yet nobody bats an eyelid???
I am not going to quote Mr Duncan in full (mainly because I don't want to throw my laptop out of my office window - my office being on the first floor) but apparently he thinks that anybody who is not wealthy is "a low achiever" and "knows nothing about the real world". He seems to be under the impression that both of these shoud be a barrier to becoming an MP.
I had to have a smile to myself when I read some tweets he had sent (they had been retweeted and ended up on my timeline) where he dug himself into a deeper hole by trying to claim he hadn't meant what he had said in the way it came across. Put it this way - he sounded even more pompous in those two tweets than he had when he spoke.
(Unfortnately - due to legal reasons - I cannot tell you my thoughts on reading a tweet informing me that someone thought Mr Duncan had been "Something in Oil". The legal reasons being I don't really want to be sued.)
The whole sorry saga reminded me of how unfair the rules governing the House of Commons are - with particular reference to "Parliamentary Priviledge" and "Parliamentary Language".
I get the general idea that - unless you do what Mr Skinner did by referring to the Prime Minister as "Dodgy Dave" (and implying - or inferring - that the Prime Minister is dishonourable) - you can practically say what you want in the chamber of the House of Commons. This is up to and including breaking injunctions, breaking the Official Secrets Act, and putting our National Security at risk by discussing things like wars.
In plain English - "Parliamentary Privilege" and "Parliamentary Language" are both instruments which (whilst the MP is on Westminster turf) grant people like Mr Duncan the right to insult the electorate but do not give Mr Skinner the right to make personal attacks (even verbal) on the Prime Minister. Yet - if you or I attempted to do the same as either of the humans of the Male Species mentioned above - we would find ourselves up in Court if they got to hear of it.
You may be getting the idea that I am jealous of MPs - you couldn't be more wrong. Whilst I might agree that MPs should be allowed to break certain laws during their discussions in the House of Commons - I do not agree that they should be allowed to break the laws of common decency and civility.
However, I suppose one good thing has come out of the "Panama Papers" saga - at least we now know what the wealthy MPs actually think of those of us who are nothing like them.
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