Thursday, October 20, 2011

This is a bad thing?

The dead tree Times had a headline today on a clampdown on lobbyists might hit trade unions and charities, so being a nosey bugger and whilst my good lady was paying our tax on the stupid (lottery ticket) I had a read in Morrison's news section. It's covered now by the Times paywall, but I found a picture of it.
Not that I suspect you'd think I was lying, but simply for the record.
Now I suspect most of the people reading this will be fairly pleased if Trade Unions and (fake) charities are somehow prevented from lobbying politicians directly as from past experience, most do not have our interests at heart. The (fake) charities in particular seem to be paid for out of government funds to tell the government what they want to hear. With the Unions though, it's because they own the Labour Party and want access to Westminster to tell their pets what to do. What the headline sort of hides though is that it's calling for a compulsory register of lobbyists, which an only work if it includes all those that lobby government: commercial lobbyists, companies, charities, unions, law firms, management consultants, trade bodies, think tanks. Basically the whole of the public affairs industry. It will let those who are interested know just who (and how much) lobbying is done by certain "special interest" groups of our MP's and provided there is a sensible minimum financial threshold, below which charities or for that matter small businesses, would not have to sign up I can't see a problem with it. The likes though of big business, Trade Unions, Layers (the Law industry) Big (fake) charities and government/privately sponsored think tanks need to have the rock lifted on their activities and have it exposed to the light of public scrutiny.
The Times is scaremongering, a sensible register of lobbyist will hurt no-one save those who are spending large enough bribes to influence our politicians.
It's all now down to our greedy MP's at to whether it goes through.

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