Tuesday, 15 November 2016

My Times letter on Aaron Banks's proposal to "drain the swamp" in Parliamemt

Letter as edited by The Times:

Sir, While no one would disagree with Arron Banks that “lazy, ineffective or corrupt” MPs should have no place in our parliament, the danger of his aggressive rhetoric is that it fuels the public perception that many or most of our politicians share these attributes. They do not.

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/comment/arron-banks-plan-to-reform-the-commons-h7pc90fdn

Full text of letter sent:

Sir,

Aaron Banks says he wants to “drain the swamp” and "destroy the professional politician”. While no-one would disagree with him that “lazy, ineffective or corrupt” MPs should have no place in our Parliament, the danger of his aggressive rhetoric is that it fuels the public perception that many or most of our politicians share these attributes, when in fact they do not. 

There is nothing wrong with wealthy individuals such as Mr Banks bankrolling political parties such as UKIP and movements such as Leave.EU. Indeed I respect him for putting his money where his mouth is. However, our political parties are an important democratic mechanism through which hundreds of thousands of ordinary individuals, who do not have such financial clout, are able to influence politics and serve their communities and their country. 

Virtually all who join a political party, stand for election and serve as a representative of the people do so for honourable reasons. One such “professional politician” is Nigel Farage, who has been an MEP for 16 years. 

Yours faithfully,

John Slinger

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Mr Banks's original statement, to which I was responding http://leave.eu/en/news/0/tycoon-wants-to-smash-commons-political-careerists-and-drain-the-swamp

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