Monday, March 14, 2011

A year's a short time in politics .... for Barnsley's Right Dishonourable Eric Illsley

Crime pays, eh, Eric?

Ex Barn-sleazy MP Eric Illsley, who was jailed for a year after questionable claims on his second home in February, may soon return to a street near you. The member of prison is reportedly set to scarper from a year's hard sentence behind bars by opting for a tag, just three months into his sentence.

Apparently he is a low-risk crim ... but with curfew hours 7am t0 7pm, don't be surprised if there's a knock, ring, letter through your door in prime time campaign clock hours.

While he may wave goodbye to those long late luncheons, it beggars belief that the strong actions of a parliament scorned by expense scandals were to be in vain. For the one and only politician to feel her wrath is set to escape punishment. It is hardly a strong message to convey - do as we say, not as we do? Why should an MP get a lesser sentence than your everyday criminal?

He's hardly Kylie. Honour your sentence, Eric. Stick it out in the slammer. It's what the electorate wants.

At the same time, News of the World reports that IPSA fancy handing over expense cash and asking questions later in their bid to erm, ensure legitimate claims are kept in tact.

Expect more Mars Bars on the books. Who's going to question the constitutional need for a Mars Bar? 'Well, I needed it to keep up energy while out on the campaign trail ...'

Clarke's hell-bent on being an anti-hero for the Tories

Clarke is fast becoming a nuisance. When he's not closing prisons at the tip of a hat or getting petty apologies for petty thefts, he is busy embarking on another harebrained scheme destined to be a miss with the tabloid nation. Last week it was scrapping searches in prison cells.

Is he going soft in his old age? London Spin Online asked whether it is time he was put on the subs bench in place of an ex-MP who could dish out real justice - the kind the public are clamouring for in these dark and unpleasant times.

But with his recent good behaviour notably getting behind the No2AV campaign - even if in a slightly absurd vid about the madness to follow in the footsteps of obscure countries like Fiji, and er, Australia - and his recent talk of libel laws and scrapping squatters rights, Mr Clarke, could well be on the way to getting his fifteen minutes of public adulation. Watch this space for his next prisoners need Sky gaffe.

EU referendum is fairer than AV

Forget whether to AV or not to AV. EU membership is the question. The Daily Express headed to No 10 this week with 373,000 pleas from readers for their say on our position in the continent.
Whatever your stance, a key pledge to allow the public to go to the EU ballot has been unfairly ignored in favour of AV - a small concessionary waste of time to please a few Lib Dems and act as a distraction technique with referendum in the title. It may be a referendum but it's not what 373k voters (and counting) asked for last May. A fairer system would honour politician promises. AV may make some confused lefties happy come election day but a whole section of the electorate are being ignored under the weight of protocol. Laws have been reviewed, torn up and amended for centuries. You can't hide behind the ratification argument for ever.

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