Placating public anger

Alex Hilton cleverly characterises Tessa Jowell:

Tessa Jowell is calling for open primaries for parliamentary selections. I’m extremely concerned at the desperate scrabbling of the elite to find political reforms that placate public anger without actually making their own jobs any less secure.

And this excessive job security for MPs is the crucial problem that needs to be fixed. Of 646 MPs, about 450 are in “safe” seats where they say a monkey could get elected in the right colour rosette. Well the problem is that too many monkeys got elected and we have an embedded culture of unaccountability. If the public could more easily boot out a mediocre incumbent, then MPs would have to raise their game to stay in the job. This is a simple market reform that is needed, but democracy is the only arena where politicians don’t seem to want market reforms.

Spot on. The same could be said of David Cameron, of course.

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