Actually I’d hate to be an MP. These days the media attention is so close, and so negative, that it would only take the 5 minutes to find something wrong with me. Anyone with character gets weeded out by the system.
Having laughed at the Americans with George W when we had Blair, they now have Obama and we’re stuck with the Twins. So depressing! Our parties are too similar, having converged into the middle where the votes are, and our individual MPs are not high enough calibre (with a few exceptions) – and this isn’t surprising, since the pay isn’t enough for such a difficult job. It’s unpopular to say, but my first policy would be to double MPs pay so we get some really good people coming in. How else can we get Richard Branson etc to run our country?
My 17 policies:
- Double MPs pay, as explained above. And get rid of the senile freeloaders as the new pay brings in better people.
- Ban Christmas carols and decorations in shops until December. No cheesy music allowed in November.
- Clearly label low fat and low sugar food so that I don’t accidentally get the crap marmalade or the tasteless pate. In fact this is a partly serious point as the labelling of food with health traffic lights never got through, and it should have.
- Ban speed cameras and speed traps, since all they do is make law abiding people hate the police. Instead, still have traps and unmarked cars etc but fine people for dangerous driving instead of speeding. You can be dangerous below the speed limit (too close, not indicating) and safe above it (sunny day, empty road). Let the police have discretion, and of course they have video evidence if it goes to court.
- Get rid of copper coins – they are just annoying, and you can’t even get rid of them into parking meters.
- Stop the war on local government and the insidious agenda of replacing council people (who care) with outside contractors who cost more and mostly don’t care. Instead of giving up and replacing swathes of local government with private companies, manage them properly by, for example, measuring performance and only targeting the underperforming areas (instead of having complete reorganisations all the time) and by having stronger HR Departments who will actually DO something about the outrageous levels of sickness in the councils and NHS. Of course some sickness is genuine, but when you’re averaging 14 days per person per year (self employed is about 1) them strong management is needed.
- Make football goals wider so we don’t get nil-all draws any more.
- Combine England with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in the Word Cup, so that we could win it easily, with Giggs on the left wing (yes, he’s not too old) and then Wayne Bridge can have his sulk and we wouldn’t care. Plus it might make the Scottish bond a bit with their English friends down south – come on you guys, you aren’t going to win it on your own, and stop supporting Argentina when they play us! We support you against them!
- To get the dole you have to work for just 5 hours a week on volunteer / community projects, helping out the Council, cleaning up litter and graffiti etc – so people could learn a work ethic, and to care about their environment, as well as getting all these jobs done and making our country nicer. Admin would be easy – supervisor signs off the fact that you’ve done the 5 hours – or not.
- I’d make it illegal to put Heating ‘Engineer’ on the side of your white van if you don’t have a DEGREE in Engineering. No wonder we’re short of Engineers (and hence industry and hence jobs and balance of trade) if people think an Engineering degree is to teach you to fix washing machines.
- Your status photo on Facebook would not be allowed to be yourself as a baby. It’s not clever and it’s not funny – I want to know what you look like NOW.
- Encourage live music in pubs – there would be no tax on the beer if you’ve got a band playing
- No cones on motorways if men aren’t working – so you’d have to work round the clock. Instead of 3 roadworks jobs taking 3 months you could blitz each one in one month with three times the people.
- Teach time management, negotiating, financial skills and nightclub skills (how to dance and chat people up) at schools, instead of Latin etc. I didn’t feel prepared for life when I left school.
- A better careers system, which really does help kids make the most important decision of their lives. I know two marine biologists who never got a job in MB and have not been happy ever since, and loads of Economists who were wrongly advised into auditing, and why on earth did I go into running factories for a living? Personality testing and computers could solve this if we put our minds to it. The Bournemouth University computer that I tried a few years ago suggested that I joined the Army!
- Ban wasps in public places.
- Only joggers who are going five miles or more will be allowed to carry a bottle with a hole in the middle.
What did I miss?