Anorak News | Westminster Memes: Paedos, Palestine, MPs Pay And A UKIP Idiot

Westminster Memes: Paedos, Palestine, MPs Pay And A UKIP Idiot

by | 29th, November 2014

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Jane Collins, a UKIP MEP (@JaneCollinsMEP), has added her intellect to the debate on a photograph of Westminster MPs at work. She notes:

“One is a debate on children being raped & murdered & one is a debate on payrise – can you guess which is which”

Her tweet gets appoving replies:


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Only, a few words are required.

Andrew Whickey writes them:

The debate on welfare reform was a pro forma one because of an epetition, with no prospect of actually causing action to be taken, so a waste of the time of everyone there.

Most MPs, most of the time, aren’t in the chamber, but are still listening to the debates in their offices (which have a live feed), This is because a lot of the time MPs have to fit in the correspondence from their constituents (who are more concerned, in a lot of cases, that MPs act like supercouncillors than that they scrutinise legislation) into the same time as their legislative work, as they’re often working sixty or seventy hour weeks.

Most MPs were actually against the 11% pay-rise, which was awarded against the wishes of most MPs and the leaders of all three main parties, by the independent commission which took control of MPs’ pay after the expenses scandal.

The pay rise in question was actually revenue-neutral, as it involved less money going to various other benefits, such as pensions, that MPs receive.

And finally, that photo isn’t actually from the debate over the pay-rise, because there was no such debate, because MPs don’t get to set their own pay any more. In fact it’s a stock photo of PM’s question time.

Yes, there are bad MPs, MPs who only want to line their own pockets, and all the rest, but this photo plays into the hands of the stupid anti-politics “they’re all the same” nonsense, which is fundamentally against the idea of government at all — and not in a good way, but in a right-wing Grover Norquist kind of way.

Don’t fall for their lies.

Less than 1000 words and the UKIP expert might be better informed.

The UKIP MEP’s haste to damn the MPs can be linked to memes, such as this photo posted on Facebook:


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Isabel Hardman has few words to add:

The bottom image claims to be from 11 July 2013. There was no debate on pay that day, which was a Thursday. There are often fewer MPs in the House on a Thursday. So this image is from the wrong day. I’ve combed the PA images archive and, surprise, surprise, it’s not from a debate about pay in 2013. It’s from Prime Minister’s Questions on 5 September 2012. Here’s that picture in slightly better quality…


Good, grief, look at how many MPs are debating their expenses! That image on the bottom left struck me as a bit strange when I zoomed in. When you’re used to looking down on the tops of MPs’ heads from the Commons press gallery, you get quite used to what Parliament looks like from above. And I didn’t recognise that Parliament. The hair looked different, frankly. I was right not to recognise it: when this debate took place, I was preparing to take my A-levels. It was 27 January 2004, when MPs voted on the Second Reading of the Higher Education Bill to introduce top-up fees.

You believe what you want to believe.

Posted: 29th, November 2014 | In: Politicians, Reviews Comment (1) | TrackBack | Permalink