No, Not Hypocrisy

Ministers have been accused of "rank hypocrisy" after it emerged that a third of Gordon Brown\’s Cabinet are campaigning against Government plans to axe post offices in their own constituencies.

This is entirely rational: it\’s because they are working in two roles.

On the one hand they are constituency MPs, beholden to that small subset of the 50-70k voters in said constituency who ever put their heads above the parapet and say anything about anything.

On the other they are the guardians (hollow laughter: they\’re supposed to be) of the taxpayers\’ money in general and are supposed to look at the general picture.

The incentives on the first are that they do as said vocal constituents desire: they are, after all, their representatives. On the second, got to cut this waste of the taxpayers\’ money.

Sure, they ought to be telling the locals that they\’ll just have to suck it up for the general good: put that\’s political cowardice, not hypocrisy.

2 thoughts on “No, Not Hypocrisy”

  1. Downsizing a heavily subsidised nationalised industry [which you inherited from the previous government] in order to save the taxpayer money is hardly Oh Noes, Teh Communists, is it?

  2. It is also a specific case of the more general problem of being a politician of a generally leftist bent: you prescribe policies in favour of a collective group, but cannot avoid the temptation to act as an individual when you run up against the effect of such a collective policy on individuals.

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