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Effluent Man
9th Apr 2014, 07:36
Dave has shown his usual good judgement in backing her.

Wingswinger
9th Apr 2014, 07:39
I have to say I agree. She has to pay back every penny and go. She should also cough up a proportion of the tax-payer funded profit from the sale of her Wimbledon house.

Seldomfitforpurpose
9th Apr 2014, 07:51
She has gone,

BBC News - Maria Miller quits as culture secretary after expenses row (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-26951464)

Not usually one of the hang em brigade but 38 year or so taking the Queens shilling allows me to know for certain that ignorance is no excuse when it comes to the misuse of public funds.

charliegolf
9th Apr 2014, 08:25
Seldom, :ok:

'Mind yer fingers', was how it was put to us at recruit training and AAITC- misusing public funds was painted as the number 1, 'do not pass go' route to clink. Never forgot the message.

CG

Seldomfitforpurpose
9th Apr 2014, 08:31
Seldom, :ok:

'Mind yer fingers', was how it was put to us at recruit training and AAITC- misusing public funds was painted as the number 1, 'do not pass go' route to clink. Never forgot the message.

CG

Absolutely and the bean counters were only ever a brief phone call away hence ignorance is simply never a valid excuse.

SpringHeeledJack
9th Apr 2014, 08:42
From a distant perspective, she has not shown any self fuelled motivation to right her wrongs, that is except SELF-INTEREST. She stood up to apologise because the committee 'had asked her to', not because she wanted to or should. Yesterday it was that she 'was devastated' for her constituents and finally today she has resigned and will be back in due course, according to the dave in chief…..:roll eyes:

Are there ANY MP's or ministers who actually act on/for the best interests of their constituents rather than become self-propagating 'me empires' ?



SHJ

MagnusP
9th Apr 2014, 08:47
Good to see she fell on her sword at last. Mind you, she probably claimed for it on expenses . . .

acbus1
9th Apr 2014, 08:47
She has gone,
Wonder what her severance pay claim will look like... :rolleyes: ;)



We all know what the pension looks like. :*

modtinbasher
9th Apr 2014, 09:29
My ancient overnight rates for a roof over my head when on detached duty in the smoke wouldn't buy an average restaurant meal today, yet these chattering masses are given huge sums of money to create a personal fortune. Ok, it's supposed to provide "lodgings" when one is on duty in the House, but there are plenty times when they aren't even in the place.


Why not build a ginormous edifice with enough rooms for the lot of them and they get to stay there for free. If they want to buy a second house as befits their station, then they pay for it themselves!


MTB

charliegolf
9th Apr 2014, 09:35
MTB

Surely there is some barrack/mess space in London they could use? Ah, but what about family life, poor dears.

4mastacker
9th Apr 2014, 09:43
Just another day at Westminster. (http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01573/pigs_1573165c.jpg)

Gordon17
9th Apr 2014, 09:59
Wonder what her severance pay claim will look like...



We all know what the pension looks like.

She's only resigned her cabinet post - she's not talking about standing down as an MP, though maybe her constituents will deal with that.

Krystal n chips
9th Apr 2014, 10:00
Is there a section in the Guiness Book of Records for "the shortest spoken apology"...?.....if so, we have a contender !.....all 32 secs worth !....albeit totally cosmetic.

On the other hand, she could now join the Green Party....her neck, in the rain, would surely make her an ideal candidate

Tankertrashnav
9th Apr 2014, 10:30
From memory

"If it were done when 'tis done, then 'twere well it were done quickly"

I assume Ms Miller didnt do Macbeth for GCE/GCSE English!

Mind you,looking at the sums involved, they are nothing compared with what is dished out in Brussels. Your average MEPs have their snouts in a much deeper trough.

The Kinnocks must be wondering what all the fuss is about!

G-CPTN
9th Apr 2014, 11:04
Dave has intimated that MM will be reinstated to government 'in due course'.

The independent parliamentary commissioner for standards previously recommended she repay £45,000 and criticised her "attitude" to the inquiry.
Mrs Miller was cleared of funding a home for her parents at taxpayers' expense, but was told to repay £5,800
So, retaining the £40,000 (?) isn't going to disqualify her from public office?

I think we should be told.

G-CPTN
9th Apr 2014, 11:20
Shamed former Tory MP Julie Kirkbride lands £100,000 lobbying job | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1281062/Shamed-Tory-MP-Julie-Kirkbride-lands-100-000-lobbying-job.html)

skydiver69
9th Apr 2014, 11:27
This whole affair just goes to show how lax and open to abuse the old expenses rules were. Miller remortgaged her second home to pay for renovations with the mortgage being paid for by tax payers. In the meantime the value of the house increased meaning that she personally made a tidy profit when it was sold and benefited even more due to the tax payer subsidy of the mortgage. At the same time her parents lived there rent free which again could be looked at as being subsidised by the tax payer. Miller then sold the house but flipped its designation in Feb 2014 just before the sale meaning that there was the opportunity to avoid paying capital gains tax on it. I say 'opportunity' as her 'team' have said that its too early for the liability to be assessed yet and also because she is now hardly likely to do anything else which would make her look as is she is avoiding her obligations, whether these are legal or moral. Then there was also the issue that one of her advisers implied that the Telegraph should watch its step over their reporting of the issue given that Miller had an influential role over how Leveson will be implemented.

An independent review recommended that she re pay £44,000 in expenses which was then downgraded by a committee of fellow MPs to just over £5000 along with an order that she apologise to the House for obstructing the investigation. Miller then starts her apology by saying 'the committee has recommended that I apologise to the House,' which so it hardly appeared to be a genuine sentiment.

Are MP's that caught up in their own world that they by and large failed to realise how all of this was going to go down in the real world? Even now that Miller has done the right thing by stepping down there is still an impression that Cameron thinks that she hasn't done anything wrong and that he is going to have her back in cabinet soon.

Lon More
9th Apr 2014, 11:30
there is still an impression that Cameron thinks that she hasn't done anything wrong

Maybe she's only guilty of something that CMD and the rest of the cabinet is also doing?

Seldomfitforpurpose
9th Apr 2014, 12:43
Maybe she's only guilty of something that CMD and the rest of the cabinet is also doing?

If true they probably took their lead from the previous cabinet :ok:

Andy_S
9th Apr 2014, 13:29
Shamed former Tory MP Julie Kirkbride lands £100,000 lobbying job | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1281062/Shamed-Tory-MP-Julie-Kirkbride-lands-100-000-lobbying-job.html)

I know it's going off at a tangent, but I recall that one of the last cabinets most notorious 'troughers', Jacqui Smith, eventually found employment with one of the big accountancy firms. Presumably they thought she brought a very specific skill set to them......

As regards Maria Miller, strictly speaking she did nothing wrong. The Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards cleared her of falsifying expenses, but recommended she repaid overclaimed expenses. The Commons Committee for Standards, who have the final say in these matters, watered down that recommendation and imposed a much lower repayment, which Miller did accept.

There was obviously a bad smell about the whole business, and a feeling that she'd got away with it. Even so, she might have been able to ride the storm out if she'd made a sincere and humble apology instead of the brief and grudging excuse for one that she actually gave. Her goose was really cooked, though, when her aide started covertly threatening the press with Leveson - at that point her position was untenable, and someone higher up the food chain should have told her so.

funfly
9th Apr 2014, 13:48
I didn't realise what a wonderful public spirited person she was until I read her resignation letter.

Lon More
9th Apr 2014, 13:54
If true they probably took their lead from the previous cabinet

Who undoubtedly followed in Thatcher's footsteps.

Andy_S
9th Apr 2014, 14:05
Who undoubtedly followed in Thatcher's footsteps.

Wot? Not Blair's? Or Major's??

Seldomfitforpurpose
9th Apr 2014, 14:44
Wot? Not Blair's? Or Major's??

You must forgive our Lon as has a bad case of Thatcher Syndrome, as in what ever the problem she is to blame :p:p:p:p:p

vulcanised
9th Apr 2014, 15:17
a bad case of Thatcher Syndrome


Which has gone beyond tedious.

UniFoxOs
9th Apr 2014, 15:27
Who undoubtedly followed in Thatcher's footsteps.

Would this be the same Maggie who refused to let the country pay for even the ironing board when No 10 was being refurbished, on the grounds that it was for personal use?

sitigeltfel
9th Apr 2014, 16:25
Maybe she's only guilty of something that CMD and the rest of the cabinet is also doing?

I'm sure you will be able to provide evidence to that effect. :rolleyes:

Meanwhile, you could also let us know the answer to the following question...

Which political party has had twice as may of its politicians jailed for expenses fraud, than any other party?

Fox3WheresMyBanana
9th Apr 2014, 16:51
Siti - that will just tell us which party's politicians are not very good at expenses fraud, not which has the most doing it. ;)

MReyn24050
9th Apr 2014, 17:22
Wonder what her severance pay claim will look like...

From the Daily Telegraph Web Page

Maria Miller is under pressure to reject the payoff of around £17,000 she is eligible for after quitting as Culture Secretary over her expenses.
The Basingstoke MP is entitled to a lump sum worth three months of her £67,000 ministerial salary, which comes on top of her parliamentary pay, by law but can decide not to take it.
Labour MP John Mann, who has previously campaigned for ministerial severance pay to be axed and made the formal complaint against Mrs Miller over her expenses, said it would be a "further insult" to taxpayers if she accepted the cash.
He said: "It is a ridiculous and outdated practice to pay off ministers when they return to the backbenches.
"In light of Maria Miller's conduct, it would now be inappropriate for her to claim severance pay following her resignation. For her to accept a payoff would be a further insult to the taxpayer.
"I am also repeating my call for ministers' severance pay to be scrapped, and hope that more MPs will support my resolution."
Ministers under the age of 65 are entitled to the payoff if they leave one ministerial post and are not given another one within three weeks.
Asked if Mrs Miller should reject the payment, the Prime Minister's official spokesman said: "That is a matter for the individual Member of Parliament."

RedhillPhil
9th Apr 2014, 17:36
Just a couple of thoughts on this second home business.
I understand that clocking-in time for M.P.s is 10.00. Why does an M.P. who lives in Cambridge, Basingstoke, Brentwood, Reigate and loads of other places within a sixty minute commute of London require a second home? Thousands of people travel for much longer distances to get to their place of work.
This main residence thing. Why doesn't someone on the expenses panel or whatever it's called check with the D.V.L.A. to see what address is on their driving licence. I believe that it's an offence to show the incorrect address.

Don_Apron
9th Apr 2014, 17:59
Pigs at the trough. What else do you expect from a morally bankrupt party of toffs.

Just another reason to vote UKIP.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
9th Apr 2014, 18:03
http://www.skewsme.com/img/career_organized_crime.jpg

wings folded
9th Apr 2014, 18:16
Pigs at the trough. What else do you expect from a morally bankrupt party of toffs.

Just another reason to vote UKIP.


Is Mr Farage a paragon of expenses virtue?

Lon More
9th Apr 2014, 18:25
I'm sure you will be able to provide evidence to that effect.
I only posed a question.

Which political party has had twice as may of its politicians jailed for expenses fraud, than any other party

New Labour of course, though percentage wise if Farage got what he deserves for his admitted fiddling of EU expenses UKIP would probably top the charts,
Interestingly, despite the recommendations re Miller, it was a Tory rigged committee that decided she only had to pay back an insignificant amount. Not for nothing is it the CON-servative Party.

skydiver69
9th Apr 2014, 18:59
Is it wrong that I find her slightly foxy, especially in some of the nicer pictures of her. I could just imagine her in a twin set and not much else :\ :eek:

Fox3WheresMyBanana
9th Apr 2014, 19:29
Very, very wrong. Seek professional help.
Unless of course you are or dream of being the chairman of a local Conservative Association. Such thoughts are, doubtless, how she won selection as a candidate in the first place.

G-CPTN
9th Apr 2014, 19:38
When questioned on BBC Radio Five Live as to whether she had done wrong, her answer was very carefully contrived to say that she had apologized for what she had been asked to apologize for . . .

defizr
9th Apr 2014, 19:40
Are there ANY MP's or ministers who actually act on/for the best interests of their constituents rather than become self-propagating 'me empires' ?

Frank Field.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
9th Apr 2014, 19:44
Robert Key, just retired. I could name a few more, but they are all retired or retiring. They know they don't 'fit' any more.

sea oxen
9th Apr 2014, 21:28
Mary MacLeod, PPS to Miller, suffered a bit of a train wreck last night sticking up for her boss. She didn't have much powder for her musket, she must know that her seat is history in 2015. She handled it rather better than I would have - I'd have told Maria to bugger off and run away.

Curiously, unlike her Labour predecessor, she doesn't feel the need for a pied a terre in Waterloo, perhaps she does not want to make the sorts of expenses claims that made Ann and Alan Keen so famous.

Maria Miller was a blood sacrifice. The horny-handed, whitefingered Labour voters might like to reflect upon the living arrangements of people such as Darling and Balls. And we all know that many members of the Coalition have been sticking to the rules - which deliver them an enormous bonus.

So what's going on here? It's not a Tory stitch-up, the other bunch was in power long before that, and the most egregious examples from both sides were exposed in the dying days of that regime.

All that's needed is a suitable accommodation block in Pimlico. Alas, Erno Goldfinger is no longer with us.

VP959
9th Apr 2014, 22:16
Fox3WheresMyBanana wrote:
Robert Key, just retired. I could name a few more, but they are all retired or retiring. They know they don't 'fit' any more.

True. I had several dealings with rob when he was our MP. I didn't always agree with him, but I couldn't fault him in terms of putting his constituents first, and party politics well and truly second.

Perhaps more importantly he genuinely took an interest in the issues that concerned his constituents. He was also very good at making sure that he personally wrote to anyone in his constituency who he felt had made a useful contribution to local society. I was a little surprised to get a very nice letter from him, completely out of the blue, when he'd heard about a small incident in the city that I'd played a small part in resolving.

Sadly, politicians like him are rare. When I lived down in Cornwall David Penhaligon had a similar reputation as a genuine "people's politician", but I'm sorry to say that my personal list of politicians who really care about their constituents is just two.

GrumpyOldFart
10th Apr 2014, 03:06
Much as I enjoy most of Lon's posts on here, I can't help but agree with Vulcanised.

Lon - just for a change, read up on Stephen Harper and his 'contributions' to Canada, and let us know how he compares with Maggie.

;)

sitigeltfel
10th Apr 2014, 06:16
I only posed a question.

Innuendo masquerading as a question, and your reply was a cop-out. So, we can take it you have no proof, only prejudice.

it was a Tory rigged committee that decided she only had to pay back an insignificant amount.Four Tory, three Labour and one LibDem. Hardly "rigged", as the Tories would only be able to manage a split decision, never a majority.

KelvinD
10th Apr 2014, 07:23
I am a constituent of Maria Miller's. I never voted for her and would never dream of so doing. However, I do believe in fair play and I think she was stitched up. She was found to be innocent of the charges originally brought by John Mann. However, during the inquiry, questions were asked about her increasing the mortgage on the London home and in the end it was determined she had not been entitled to all of the allowance in respect of the increased mortgage. Fair enough, although this was not what she was 'charged' with. It was not Maria Miller who decided she should not repay the full £48,000 but a committee of trough dippers, aka MPs.
It should be noted that one of the people whipping up local anti-Miller opinion here in Basingstoke was a former aide to her. A man who had been kicked out of the local Conservative party (takes some doing!). He was also my local councillor for some time and was himself subject of some controversy when it was found he was claiming expenses for sitting as a local councillor and for his additional "duties" as a county councillor.
Having read all the correspondence between Maria Miller and the inquiry, I have to say her biggest fault was getting into too much detail and couching some of her replies in legalese terms etc. Given that her husband is a solicitor, I think we can draw conclusions about that.
Yet another MP reportedly agitating for Maria Miller to go is George Osborne. That would be the same George Osborne who was found to have massively over claimed for mortgage payments on his Cheshire farm. Having bought the farm before becoming an MP, he doubled the mortgage on this property and then claimed £100K from us in interest claims, then sold the farm for over £1 Million. Kerching!
Basingstoke is home to thousands of people who have to commute daily into London and, during the previous round of expenses scandals, I looked into this and found she could have lived here full time and commuted into London just as the people who voted for her have to do. And that would cost around £9k per year which she could have claimed as travel expenses. Far cheaper than her £2K per month mortgage claims. However, that is the fault of the system, not the MP.
As an MP, I have had reason to contact her twice over the last couple of years and found she has been very responsive, dealing with my issues very quickly.
And all the newspaper headlines about the constituents will pay her back come the next election; don't believe it. And UKIP won't get a sniff here either.
So yes, I actually feel sorry for the woman. Her biggest crime, compared to all the Westminster gang, is to have been found out and to have put up a spirited fight. Too spirited. You would think that a person with a background in PR would have been able to figure out the proper way to have dealt with the original inquiry.

Andy_S
10th Apr 2014, 08:13
As I said previously, if she'd made a humble and unqualified apology it would have blown over pretty quickly.

Krystal n chips
10th Apr 2014, 09:10
Hmmm?.....lets see....forthcoming General Election....her departure and...damage limitation exercise.....= Votes

Mud always gets slung around at elections as we know, all parties participate, and the public, whilst daft and indifferent in equal measure as well as being disillusioned with UK politicians per se, do however, tend to remember events like this as it involves the little matter of £££'s....something a lot of the public have a shortage of at present.

G-CPTN
10th Apr 2014, 09:22
Over many years, I have yet to see an MP who hasn't acquired wealth during their tenure of the post.

Seldomfitforpurpose
10th Apr 2014, 09:38
Over many years, I have yet to see an MP who hasn't acquired wealth during their tenure of the post.

Whilst I fully agree there us a mahoosive difference between fair and proper remuneration and theft.

Some would argue MP's pay and pensions amount to theft in themselves however they are legally paid.

What Miller did was effectively steal from the public purse of that there is little doubt. In the RAF the was a whole admin setup on every Stayion I ever served on that were only a phone call away for advice on such matters and I cannot believe that MP's don't have access to similar.

The bit that the public are outraged by is not her crime but her punishment. If I had done that I would have lost my job, may have gone to prison and my pension would certainly have suffered.

RVR600
10th Apr 2014, 12:00
From reading some of the posts here it's clear that some feel there is a sliding scale of what's right and wrong depending on a persons status within society.

And they're absolutely right. There is. And it's our fault.

Sometimes, if you want/need change it takes something more proactive than a tweet or forum rant. (and yes, I see the irony of that statement).

Sadly, I don't see that change happening. We're a nation of apathy who are more interested in the superficial. And the only people who benefit from that are the Millers, the bankers, the corrupt/incompetent government contractors, and anyone else who sees an opportunity to leech from us.

So at some point Miller will be back in the fold because politicians know we have short term memories and, basically, just can't be bothered.

So stop having a dig at Ms Miller. She's just doing what we allow her to do. Shame on us, not her.

Krystal n chips
10th Apr 2014, 13:06
SFFP

" In the RAF the was a whole admin setup on every Stayion I ever served on that were only a phone call away for advice on such matters

I wouldn't use the admin world as a "shining example", quite the reverse in fact.

True, they existed for the reason you say....and every major organisation has similar for advice on expenses / allowances.....however....a long time ago, went on a det, put in a claim and.."here's your DM 25...it's all you are entitled to". etc ad bolleaux........ a few months later, same det location...but, this time, " here's your.....DM 250...which you are entitled to"...as the paperwork showed

As one had told the original clerk what he could do with his DM25, one, and others, were delighted to pick up DM500....strangely.

Then there was the specimen who proudly showed us how he calculated mileage claims....with a bit of string...and a road map. :ugh:

Other than that, we agree on the rest of your post....:p

Lon More
10th Apr 2014, 13:59
Innuendo ...
Been taking lessons from you.

Four Tory, three Labour and one LibDem. Hardly "rigged", as the Tories would only be able to manage a split decision, never a majority
OK bad choice of words there, should have said "coalition"

Stephen Harper and his 'contributions' to Canada, and let us know how he compares with Maggie.
He's a Conservative and he was kicked out of power?

GrumpyOldFart
10th Apr 2014, 14:48
He's a Conservative and he was kicked out of power?



a) That's what he calls himself. Of course, he's lying about that, as with everything else.

b) Not yet. But he will be.

CaptainSensible
10th Apr 2014, 17:41
Meanwhile the present lot (Tories) are more then happy to preside over the ongoing "Wongaisation" of the UK along with Zero hours contracts, fat cat bonuses etc.

Maybe when they said "We are all in it together" they really meant "You're all in it together" :ugh:

sitigeltfel
10th Apr 2014, 19:14
Meanwhile the present lot (Tories) are more then happy to preside over the ongoing "Wongaisation" of the UK along with Zero hours contracts, fat cat bonuses etc.

Maybe when they said "We are all in it together" they really meant "You're all in it together" :ugh:

Its amazing what a little research throws up......

Labour in Retreat on Zero-Hours - Guy Fawkes' blog (http://order-order.com/2013/08/08/labour-in-retreat-on-zero-hours/)

Labour?s Zero Comment on the Co-Op Zero-Hour Stance Spells Conference Chaos - Guy Fawkes' blog (http://order-order.com/2013/08/07/labours-zero-comment-on-the-co-op-zero-hour-stance-spells-conference-chaos/)

Labour vetoes Plaid bid to ban zero-hour contracts (http://www.partyofwales.org/news/2014/03/23/labour-vetoes-plaid-bid-to-ban-zero-hour-contracts/?force=1)

There is much, much more.....but I will spare you further pain.