It was promised last month, but it seems to have disappeared without trace. What’s going on? Rumour has it that it’s the Labour Party in the form of the redoubtable Margaret Beckett who has decided to cut up rough just at the last moment – probably because the Labour Party is in deep financial dodo and not too many folk are rushing to help out. The Tories are unhappy too, and it’s all becoming rather silly.
Apparently a cap of £10,000 has been mentioned and immediately rejected by the Tories who want the level to be much, much higher – and so do Labour. But the real issue is being completely overlooked. Party donations, money, is the root cause of why we have dishonest politics. It is why politics has become exclusive and favours a self-seeking political class: the interests of the electorate secondary to personal and party agendas. Money has distorted our democracy so much that it is no longer fit for purpose.
Until we take money out of politics (and I mean completely out of politics) we will never, repeat never, have a truly representative democracy. You have only to look at America to see what happens when money rules. It has made American politics dysfunctional.
We are quite happy to sub the royal family to the tune of .68p a head. Surely there would be few who would object to a £5 a head levy to have a political system that functioned properly, that delivered reform and addressed the needs of the people before the funding requirements of political parties and the campaign chests of politicians?
The forthcoming review will suit politicians – whenever it appears – they’ll see to that, but it will have very little, if anything, to do with us.