Political funding scandal
To this the answer is that almost half their gross revenue already comes from the state. At Westminster opposition parties receive £5.5m a year for parliamentary offices, including aides, researchers and spin doctors. Since 2000 a further £2m has been added for “policy development”, whatever that means. MPs get gyms, discounts, freebies and trips galore. They are civil servants and pay no Vat. Their travel is free and their second homes (and in the case of some ministers, third ones) are subsidised. They recently voted themselves pension plans of stupefying generosity.
The parties also get an estimated £80m of free letter post, conference security and television propaganda. Even Sinn Fein gets £584,000 a year in cash for “parliamentary allowances”, despite refusing to turn up or even take the oath of allegiance. The money is described as “an act of goodwill”.
Read the whole column and seethe!