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Dirty Government incentivised

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Warning: This post was published more than 12 years ago.

I keep old posts on the site because sometimes it's interesting to read old content. Not everything that is old is bad. Also, I think people might be interested to track how my views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have mellowed and matured!

But given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views might have changed in the 12 years since I wrote this post.
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Many thanks for your understanding.

I’ve pointed out before that, for me, one of the worst aspects of the Blair government is that ministers who resign in disgrace are almost invariably rehired, making a mockery of the idea of resigning because it’s the ‘right thing to do’, and removing all honour associated with standing down because you’re not worthy of office. What had never occured to me until today, thanks to a good journo asking an intelligent question of the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesperson, is that these ministers get payoffs for resigning from their posts, and then get rehired. And, on top of that, there’s not any wish to reform the system.

So not only is there no honour to resigning in disgrace any more, but it’s actually incentivised. The politician who’s done something so inescapably bad that they are forced into resigning gets a nice fat pay-off, and then is rehired. So they are, effectively, paid for being naughty. Even Dr Tanya Byron can see that’s not a good idea. And, frankly, it’s disgraceful.

Look at Estelle Morris, for example. Her mistakes put thousands of teenagers’ life plans off course, and caused untold worry and stress in families across the country. So she resigns, apparently very sorry for the mess she’s made. And I truly believe she was sorry – she seems a very open and honest woman. And yet, I guess it’s not all that difficult to be truly sorry when you know you’re going to get a nice big pay-off and a job back in government, with the associated huge salary, within a matter of months.

Tony Blair may have aspired to heading the washing-powder ‘whiter-than-white’ government, but his government is, at the very least, as soiled as the last. He should be ashamed.

This 642nd post was filed under: Politics.






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The ‘theft’ of medical staff from the developing world (published 27th May 2005)

Identity Theft (published 13th February 2005)

My Overdose – in support of ten23 (Video Post) (published 28th January 2010)

The BBC’s future is under threat from social media (published 16th October 2011)


Comments and responses

Comment from Engelbert Goldstein


by Engelbert Goldstein

Comment posted at 23:33 on 25th June 2005.

“at the very least, as soiled as the last.”

It has taken you long enough to realize that.

And no mention of the adulterer Blunket resigning, getting his GBP 18 000 resignation bonus, and then within months, getting a high paying cabinet position once again.


Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)


by sjhoward

Comment posted at 15:38 on 26th June 2005.

Blunkett is the example cited by the journo questioning the PMOS, but I thought Ms Morris was a rather better example, as her failure was in her direct responsibilities as a minister rather than simply the moral code by which misiters are expected to conduct themselves. And as for taking a while – I’ve never claimed to be quick on the uptake!


Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)


by sjhoward

Comment posted at 15:47 on 26th June 2005.

Those readers who aren’t familiar with the work of Dr Tanya Byron, referred to above, click here for her biog.


Trackback from elsewhere on the site



Trackback received at 15:49 on 2nd November 2005.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Blunkett resigns. Again.


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Trackback received at 00:20 on 16th April 2006.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Mr Smith’s arrest in cash-for-honours scandal


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Trackback received at 02:33 on 25th June 2007.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Sacked minister rehired: The same old New Labour


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