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LQD: A different kind of spin

by Sven Triloqvist Thu May 7th, 2009 at 07:57:47 AM EST

From the Corporate Europe Observatory bloggers: EP elections ahead, how fast will the revolving door spin?

With the European Parliament elections now just five weeks away, the first election posters have started appearing in cities across Europe. As it becomes clear who will run for (re-) election, it also emerges who is stepping down from being an MEP. Many will return to national politics, retire or look for a new job. What will be really interesting to watch in the coming weeks and months is which of the current MEPs will go through the revolving door into new jobs as industry lobbyists.

There follows a long list of MEPS who have been through the revolving door. One of them is two term Finnish MEP Piia-Noora Kauppi won an award for Worst Conflict of Interest in last year's Worst EU Lobby Awards, after becoming the head of the Finnish banking lobby. In 2005 she was noticed by the WSJ for supporting looser regulations against money-laundering.

She leaves the EP now with fond memories and "My work will continue in the new role, but hopefully still in good cooperation with all supporters and friends of my MEP time." Of course, it will, duckie, that is how it works.

Photos of her schmoozing in Brussels

What the EU needs are harsher rules than even the US Congress applies.

The European Parliament currently has no rules to prevent conflicts of interest around the revolving doors phenomena, unlike in the US where the members of the House of Representatives are banned from lobbying for two years after leaving the House. House and Senate staffers are banned for a year from lobbying their former employer.

An old issue. With the apparent lack of interest in the elections, I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that one's career as a MEP is seen as a career ticket to punch on one's way to "real" poser and influence (being asked to appear on TV to comment on the issues of the day).

"It Can't Be Just About Us"
--Frank Schnittger, ETian Extraordinaire
by papicek (papi_cek_at_hotmail_dot_com) on Fri May 8th, 2009 at 07:17:42 AM EST
You may be surprised how little TV programs pay for commentary appearances - unless you have your own show and you are the star. It's pin money, not a living.

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Fri May 8th, 2009 at 10:20:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed, I am more concerned by the "behind the scene" influencing" (lobbying) than by "in front of a camera" influencing (commentary): the former is much, much more "efficient" and totally invisible to the general public.
by Bernard (bernard) on Fri May 8th, 2009 at 11:03:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Don't underestimate the power of TV. It gets you out on the lecture circuit and sells your book. I work in a bookstore and can assure you that a TV appearance can generate a run of sales.

Nothing happens in a vacuum.

"It Can't Be Just About Us"
--Frank Schnittger, ETian Extraordinaire

by papicek (papi_cek_at_hotmail_dot_com) on Sat May 9th, 2009 at 04:54:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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