02 December 2008

Whose Job is it Anyway?

Last month the PLP had a constituency meeting for Marc Bean, which I attended, and at which Paula Cox, Marc Bean, and Ewart Brown spoke. One of the comments that struck me (and I can't remember exactly which speaker this was -- not Marc) was that constituents ought to select a Government MP, as they would be more effective in addressing the constituents' parochial concerns (roads, lights, etc.).

A charitable interpretation of this statement is that the Government is unable to monitor and maintain these parts of parish infrastructure without some MP breathing down their back and reminding them what's broken.

A more sinister interpretation is that the Government is only interested in helping you if you are represented by a PLP MP. That is, UBP MPs shouldn't expect to get any help from Government or the civil service nor should their constituents. Now, I know this extreme formulation is not true, as many of my UBP colleagues have good relations with the civil service, who they rely on to serve their constituents. But I wonder why the PLP speakers made the original statement?

And, the reality is we have a massive civil service, one of whose jobs is to make sure the roads are OK, the lights are on, etc. It shouldn't take an MP exerting outside influence to get critical repairs & installations done.

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