Saturday, April 10, 2010

Election 'being dominated by vested interests'.

It really is no surprise when business leaders, who have already donated money to the conservatives, come out publicly backing Cameron's latest policies. Why they are being allowed to sell this as news is beyond me.

But their latest spouting, that Cameron is right to oppose Labour plans to raise national insurance, has brought a fierce reaction from the charitable sector and others, who claim that these business leaders are putting their own interests before the interests of the country.

But, amid signs of a backlash against the Tories and their supporters, Vince Cable, the Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman, turned on the businessmen, whose numbers have risen to more than 130, accusing them of having mixed motives for backing the proposals.

"We are seeing extraordinary behaviour from the captains of British industry. Some of these businessmen have had massive increases in their remuneration and are paid a hundred times more than their workforce, yet they have signed up to an agenda based on voodoo accounting which they would never dream of employing in their own enterprises."

Caroline Lucas, the leader of the Green Party, said: "It's very depressing to see the debate dominated essentially by vested interests within big business doing what you would expect them to do – protect their bottom line."

The complaints were echoed by pressure groups protesting they were at risk of being drowned out of the election debate. Michelle Mitchell, charity director for Age UK, said: "We have heard a lot from the business lobby, but other groups such as older people are important too and their voices must be heard. Older voters have huge influence in this election and it is vital politicians listen and take action on the issues, such as pensions, social care, working in later life, which are important to them."

A spokeswoman for Gingerbread, the charity for lone parents, said: "Debates about tax and spending need to be conducted listening to the voices of those whom they will affect most. Half of all single parents live in poverty and decisions about where the money goes will have a major impact on their lives and those of their children."

Environmental groups also warned that the issue had been pushed to the margins of the election by the intervention of the big business lobby.

It really doesn't surprise me that big business supports the Tories, after all the Tories seek power in order to protect the vested interests of big business. It would be news if big business were NOT backing the Tories. Them stepping up to echo the Tory leaders views of what needs to be done is simply de rigueur.

But, in this instance, it might have backfired. People are wondering why, at a time when the salaries of management are under such scrutiny, do the Tories put such store in the opinions of these overpaid businessmen?

And why are the opinions of these 130 people being heard so loudly to the detriment of the opinions of the rest of the electorate?

The Tories love to portray Labour as being in the hands of the unions, but they don't seem to even suspect that many of us see them as being in the hands of the very businessmen whose support they are now parading like a badge of bloody honour.

We know the Tories are going to give big business whatever they want, but that doesn't answer the question of what are they going to do for the rest of us?

Judging on their performance over the past few days, that thought hasn't even occurred to them.

Click here for full article.


daveawayfromhome said...

Sounds like the Tories would like to sell the same narrative that's been so good for the GOP in America, that What's Good For Business Is Good For The Country. For your sake, I hope they fail, because it turns out that what's good for business is really mostly good for businessmen.
As for why they are selling this as news? Who owns the newspapers, after all, but businessmen.

Kel said...

As for why they are selling this as news? Who owns the newspapers, after all, but businessmen.

Of course, sometimes I am terribly naive.