I was moved to write today because of a TV programme which I did not in fact see but which has been widely reported. On BBC1 Question Time, a “Conservative” MP, one Ross Thomson [Con, Aberdeen South], was put in his place by Kezia Dugdale, the former leader of Scottish Labour. Thomson had been claiming that the simplistic Universal Credit idea thought up by (incredibly thick) Iain Dunce Duncan Smith MP would “get people off benefits and into work”. Kezia Dugdale had to point out that, so far, 37% of people receiving Universal Credit are in fact employed (but underpaid). Thomson just ignored the facts and ploughed on, a characteristic of, especially, “Conservative” MPs of recent years (Priti Patel is another egregious example).
Reading the above, I was impelled to look up this Ross Thomson. I found that the little twerp (now 31) only ever worked outside politics for 2-3 years, which he spent working for Debenhams stores and in a call centre. Once he stepped onto the “politics” gravytrain in 2012 and at age 25 (as Aberdeen local councillor, then MSP, then MP), he gave up trying to (pretending to) make a living in the more usual way.
His Question Time humiliator, Kezia Dugdale, was herself only employed on the political fringe (as a campaign manager etc) for a while before becoming a full-time politico (finishing as disastrous leader of Scottish Labour: the System looks after its own— she is now a columnist for the Scottish Daily Record newspaper). It goes beyond the scope of this blog post to muse overlong as to why so many women in frontline UK politics are lesbians.
The above thoughts led on to my wondering, not for the first time, why mediocrity rules in UK politics. Indeed, to be merely mediocre at Westminster is to be winning! Most MPs and “peers” do not even achieve mediocrity but are disastrously poor in every way.
The main problem stems from the First Past The Post voting system, which was fine in the 19th Century —simple policies and issues, uneducated voters, clear party divisions— but is simply out of date and not fit for purpose today. In 21st Century Britain, someone can be pro-animal welfare, anti-mass immigration, for private enterprise but pro-State control or regulation of utilities and transport. For which party does that voter vote? Conservative? Labour? Green? UKIP? LibDem? The one-size-fits-all politics is not our reality any more.
Furthermore, the FPTP voting system means that, once the MP is in a seat, it is almost impossible to dislodge that person.
Then there is the selection procedure, which varies from party to party, but which (even in a supposedly non-System party such as the now-finished UKIP) excludes anyone thought “racist”, “anti-Semitic” etc. Also, it is to be noted that some of the worst MPs have come out of restricted shortlists such as the Conservative Party “A” List. Even so, the sheer lack of quality of Westminster candidates now is staggering. Take some fairly random examples that have caught my attention over the past few years:
- Justin Tomlinson [Con, North Swindon]: a comprehensive school, followed by Oxford Brookes University (the old Oxford Poly), where he obtained a bog-standard “business” degree. After that, he managed a small nightclub in Swindon, Wiltshire, bearing the name “Eros”(!) as well as (according to his own CV…) operating “a small marketing business” and serving on the local council; elected MP 2010.
- Louise Mensch [Con, Corby 2010-2012], a scribbler (in the past) of braindead “chick-lit” “novels”, who was placed on the Con “A” List by David Cameron-Levita. The people of Corby, her new seat, were sold a pup. She was a poor constituency MP and was accused, while on the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, of being in the pocket of Rupert Murdoch (who later employed her as a columnist). She had to admit, belatedly, to have been an abuser of hard drugs which “had messed with her head”, one possible reason why she was and is known as someone who frequently gets even basic historical and political facts wrong. Resigned as MP in 2012 after about 18 months in the position and moved to New York (domicile of her Jewish American second husband), where she failed in various internet activities and was employed for a while as “columnist” for the UK Sun “newspaper” before eventually being dismissed or at any rate not retained.
- Liz Kendall MP [Lab, Leicester West]. On paper well-qualified to be an MP, the reality is that this woman is as thick as two short planks, as her appearances on BBC This Week have made painfully obvious. Pro-Israel to the hilt (possibly part-Jewish), her 4.5% vote in the Labour leadership contest made her a laughing stock.
- Iain Duncan Smith MP [Con, Chingford]: this part-Japanese serial liar and obvious sociopath has managed to parlay a sub-par secondary education (at “secondary modern” and Merchant Navy schools) and six years as a (surely mis-gazetted?) Guards officer (where he stuck at Lieutenant) into becoming an MP and, in time, Cabinet Minister! His faked CV (claiming degrees from the University of Perugia and the so-called “Dunchurch School of Management”) became notorious only after he had become politically prominent. His cretinous attempts to “reform” the “welfare” system have led to administrative chaos, dishonesty (flowing from the top…) and misery for millions. A stupid, greedy and evil man.
- Diane Abbott [Lab, Hackney North and Stoke Newington]: Jamaican; somehow got into Cambridge University, where she scraped a degree in History. Less than two years as fast-track trainee at the Home Office (obviously unable to hack it), then a “race relations officer” for the then NCCL; then she did some researcher and press jobs for a few years. A ghastly woman: pro-abortion, a moneygrubber, expenses blodger and freeloader, openly anti-white. Now quite possibly Home Secretary of a Corbyn-Labour government!
I could list dozens, possibly hundreds, of other examples. The fact is that 90% of the House of Commons could be removed with no negative effect on anyone but those purged. The contrary, in fact.
Addendum 20 October 2018
…and look at this one, a near (?) mental case
Update, 7 December 2018
More about the aforesaid little twerp (Ross Thomson MP)
Update, 23 December 2020
Ross Thomson is no longer an MP. The reasons are elucidated here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ross_Thomson#Sexual_misconduct_allegations
A Labour MP, Paul Sweeney (who lost his seat in the 2019 General Election) claimed in November 2019 (rather suspiciously, a full year after the alleged event) that in 2018 he had been sexually assaulted by Thomson in a bar within the Palace of Westminster.
Thomson denied the charge and was later cleared by the Commons Standards Committee, but in the meantime his local Conservative Party chairman refused to sign Thomson’s nomination papers. This meant that he could not stand as a Conservative candidate.
In the event, the short-notice Conservative Party candidate was beaten soundly by the SNP candidate at the 2019 General Election.
Thomson has since returned to what seems to be complete obscurity.