I want to eat my cake

It is often possible to tell when either Labour or The Conservatives are having problems raising money as at that moment they point the finger at the other party.

I want to eat my cake

I want to eat my cake

The Conservatives would appear to be suffering as they wag their fingers at the internecine relationship between The Labour Party and Trades Unions. Which given that The Labour Party was created by Trades Unions is as ridiculous as whining about The Tories being funded by those with a vested interest in slicing tax rates.

When either part hits this point they raise the spectre of tax payers funding Political Parties. The logic that the Tories use to upset themselves about Labour party funding is the unfairness of a system by which non-party members of Trades Unions are forced to fund the party and arguing that their system of funding by choice is far better before slipping in to Tax Payers should fund it all as that would be fairer. I think that perhaps just a cursory glance at the reason given as to why Labour funding is wrong and then positing all taxpayers regardless of party affiliation should fund everyone, just slips down a big logic crack. Labour objects to Tory funding on the basis that people giving through their own choice just isn’t democratic… erm?

The idea of taxpayer funding holds far more a problem than the current system for a myriad of reasons.

It will presuppose that ant-racists are obligated to fund the BNP, that anyone who decides to set up a political party on what ever crackpot idea should be funded by everyone. It may be that the decision is made that funding will only be provided on the basis of the number of seats that a party stood for at the last election – which means that no new political party can ever get started, as they could only raise funds through the taxpayer, or is it still OK for people to donate to parties? In which case this is additional funding. How will candidates for European elections raise funding? After all parties from across Europe are absolutely entitled to, and do, select candidates for election in UK seats, is the suggestion that the UK dictates how parties in France and Germany fund their parties, or will their candidates be excluded from standing in the UK seats for the European Elections. How about Independents, council elections, parish council elections, Mayoral elections etc.?

That is before we head to tax hypothecation, which we are always told is too onerous to be worthwhile on other issues, or will the Government of the day decide on the annual budget for political parties. Would funding for political parties through taxation be protected, always increase, be subject to the same cuts as other Departments? Would we have a Minister for Party funding, a Quango, how would private party funding be regulated? The list goes on.

One vaguely intelligent idea is a cap on party income, but even that is fraught with paragraphs of problems.

The reality is that Democracy is a corrupt business and party funding is the exposed underbelly of that corruption politicians like to try and keep hidden, until they feel they may have a stick to poke the another party with, but to try and change it, is far worse than leaving it alone.




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