Saturday, December 29, 2007

Free advertising?

God and sinners will have reconciled again in this season, but one cannot be so sure whether politicians are covered under this unregulated program.

Councillors in London will have the holidays to mull over the idea of giving themselves an extra gift this year in the form of increasing their extra-office expense limits from $5,400 to $10,000 because some have been "forced" to use these expenses to hire summer staff when their purpose has been to buy "advertising and promotional gifts or souvenirs," or to attend conferences, which Controller Gina Barber euphemistically describes as "research." Whether constituents are sympathetic or not to politicians' advertising and junket requirements should take little imagination, but it apparently takes even less to pretend that their self-promotion will "provide enhanced services to their constituents."

Of course, when other people's money is passed around so freely, it is no wonder that the imagination to deal with it should be so cheap… or, for that matter, the gratification of distributing gifts or attending junkets at no expense to oneself. Even so, however, the rationalization for such an increase still appears extravagant when every single other policy, pronouncement, regulation, ban, edifice, demolition or tax levied on London taxpayers is already performed as an advertisement for politicians.

1 Comment:

Jake said...

I knew this was coming six months ago when the "Killer B's" all decided to use their expense accounts to hire aids. They realized that they would have little left in their expense accounts to go to conferences and buy goodies.

So now they are using little red herring excused for why they need the money.

The councilors are representing smaller, more "communities of interest" wards than they used to. Why they need more money to represent less people is beyond the imagination.