The saga of the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority continues... or to be accurate, ill feeling toward IPSA remains high amongst returning "Old Guard" MP's.
One senior Labour MP told me earlier today, as he hunted for a quiet place to complete his "£4,000 "loan that he has fallen behind on his mortgage payments as a result of the new system, and that he has "seriously considered" whether to just chuck the job.
I was interested to receive a reply to my tweet on the matter earlier today, branding the senior Labour MP as "a tosser" who "should get a mortgage he can afford".
For clarity, this Member CAN afford his mortgage - but the unfair system means that they are having to use their own funds (out of their own pockets and bank accounts that they might otherwise use to pay their mortgage) to pay for office set up costs and wages.
IPSA have backed down slightly and offered to lend £4,000 to Members (mentioned above) to cover some of these costs - but please take my word that honest MP's are being treated badly. I would tell you if they weren't.
I spent an enjoyable half hour on the terrace with some broadcast and print hacks this evening arguing about News International's decision to charge users to view the Times Online site.
The basic facts are that the move is expected to kill 90% of the current traffic - but that News Int. will be breaking equal if they retain just 5% of existing traffic.
It is also right to point out that journalism costs lots of money, so it's not fair for the journalist's hard work to receive no recognition.
My thought on the matter is that this business model cannot work in it's current form because people will not be bothered to sign up for account details, entering card numbers either for this stand-alone service, or for the other sites that would have to start copying the measure.
My thinking is that if News Int. want to make this work, they should look to find another way of charginf for content. For instance, could they sell an Iphone / Ipad app for say £5 that only works for a month or two?
Would this work?
Having had the fun of a bottom wisdom tooth removal earlier today, I can tell you that it is an "interesting" experience to interview Government Ministers with one side of your face totally full of anesthetic.
If you've ever had a wisdom tooth removed, you will know how painful it can be... but as I tweeted earlier today, it was nothing like as painful as listening to Mr Rifkind toadying up to Mr Speaker Bercow earlier this week.
Lastly, for tonight, I apologise for neglecting this blog. I am working to a slightly different brief at the moment and literally haven't had a free moment in days.
I very much enjoy blogging , so if you can bear with me, I promise I'll find time to put more content up.
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