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I don't get the expenses scandal.  I'm dumb founded by it frankly.  You're one of the most powerful countries on earth, and you're willing to scrap your entire government because your leaders and writing off home improvements?  Either I am an incredibly cynical American (uhm, don't all politicians do this?) and the Brits have intriguingly high standards (so weird, though, for such a class obsessed country, and one with a Monarch, to be indignant about the sense of entitlement among those in power), or there is something more going on here.  

"Pretending that you already know the answer when you don't is not actually very helpful." ~Migeru.
by poemless on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 03:10:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
is symbolic of the "haves and have mores" making out like bandits when the rest of the country is suffering from the downturn. It pisses people off, and they can do somethign about it in this case (vote them out), especially when whipped up by a not-disinterested press (the scandal has been drip-fed on a daily basis for 3+ weeks now by one paper, who got access to all expense data, and target a couple MPs per day on its front page - and this is seen as a distraction from other bigger stories on finance and Anglo Disease by some observers)

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 05:02:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Think of it like the US president, half the US senate and uncountable congressmen getting caught with their pants down at a gay orgie.

Everybody knows they does it, but it would be a huge scandal anyway :P

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 05:17:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't believe Obama & half the Senate are having gay orgies.  I do believe they are all taking advantage of the financial perks of their positions.  But it is precisely because everyone is doing it that prevents everyone from individual guilt.  If it were one person, one could be outraged, suspend disbelief that such acts are pervasive (see: Rod Blagojevich).  But to go after a 2 of the 3 branches of government for it?   You are simply making their defense for them: it is just the way things are done.  Not to mention that we need people running those two branches of government.  Moral outrage can't govern a nation.

"Pretending that you already know the answer when you don't is not actually very helpful." ~Migeru.
by poemless on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 05:40:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
poemless:
Moral outrage can't govern a nation.

Sometimes it can.  This Government has bizarrely on some issues totally ignored public opinion but on many others been swayed by public opinion in ridiculous ways.  I really don't understand the choices that have been made.  

In this case, public outrage is leading to reform of our political system, it has put this firmly on the agenda and a key issue.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 05:43:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
well the argument is that theres about 50 seats in the middle of england, and they decide any election. unfortunately, these seats have a high Daily Mail readership, so policies are decided by what will play well with these voters, and if public opinion will play well with this small group, then decisions can be made.

However this one has enraged people everywhere, including these constituencies.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 05:46:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I meant literally.  If you fire or force everyone to quit, who is steering the ship?

"Pretending that you already know the answer when you don't is not actually very helpful." ~Migeru.
by poemless on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 06:14:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A care-taker government. And then you have snap elections.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 06:21:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
well the civil service keeps running, and the current prime-minister and ministers make any decisions necessary till the point of the next election

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 06:23:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Moral outrage or the potential for it is a, nay, the most important thing in controlling the elites.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Sat Jun 6th, 2009 at 11:23:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]

I don't believe Obama & half the Senate are having gay orgies.

Americans are such idealists!

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 05:46:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
LOL.  I hope if Obama is having orgies, they are not gay.  I don't have anything against gays, but it would be nice if they left some of the good men for the ladies, that's all.  :)


"Pretending that you already know the answer when you don't is not actually very helpful." ~Migeru.
by poemless on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 06:13:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What, nobody told you about the orgies?! :P

Sillyness aside, my point is that what constitutes a scandal differs from country to country. US politicians are not supposed to have extra-marital affairs, especially not of the non-heterosexual kind. From my cultural setting this is absurd, swedish politicians has affairs and divorce and remarry and such without it hardly getting headlines.

And precisely because of the undemocratic brittish party system, there is not a pressure on them to line their pockets for the next election in the same way as in the US. So when they are found with their hands deep down in the cookie-yar, in the middle of a financial crises, then this is the result.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 05:48:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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