Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Where do politicians come from, daddy?

In other news today - Hazel Blears is going to tell the Hansard Society that all the wrong sort of people go into politics these days. I wonder if Hazel reckons she herself is on the side of the angels? Lower middle-class background, I suppose; Poly Law graduate, solicitor, local council lawyer, then local councillor, eventually the MP for Salford, from whence she comes.
It's an old saw for Blears to lament politics as "a career move rather than call to public service", and a political class "drawn from narrowing social base and range of experience." However she's obviously damning the PLP when she slags the idea of "a 'transmission belt' from university activist, MP's researcher, think-tank staffer, special adviser, to Member of Parliament and ultimately to the front bench." Apparently her clarion call is for future MPS to arise "from a range of backgrounds - business, the armed forces, scientists, teachers, the NHS, shopworkers..."
What's not to agree with? Sure, did the best and brightest and most honourable people you know go into politics? Or decide to do something more worthy, or that remunerated more handsomely? (If indeed they found work.)
BTW Blears also has a go at bloggers who ‘spreading corrosive cynicism’ in political discourse. Not me, Haze. But of course she’s actually referring to the newly prominent types whose updates run across the masthead of PoliticsHome. And - forgive my cynicism - I don’t think she has a clue what she’s talking about, but is cheerfully reading off the autocue prepared by some younger and doubtless blog-mad researcher.

No comments: