Skip to main content

Musicians Union, Orchestras and Henry the Eighth

A limited amount of debate has been going on about the new "Ministers change law by edict" bill going through the House next week. David Howarth has put down some really good amendments on this which go to the nub of the bill.

It remains that the government are putting down a bill that makes it easier for Ministers to change the law without a full parliamentary procedure. Almost anything could be rammed through with the agreement of two committees and one vote in each house.

The argument is to make deregulation easier. The real problem is that Civil Servants generally don't want to reduce the amount of regulation as this reduces their ability to influence what happens. All proposals for deregulation have to come from the Civil Service (Ministers, but we know how little they have to do with this).

The bill has been called the Henry VIII bill becuase it is about greater power for the crown prerogative (ie government).

In the mean time the Musician's Union have a problem with class 2 NI contributions being required from orchestras. This is a good example where noone really wants this regulation. Musicians tend to work as music teachers when not working in Orchestras so there is no long period of unemployment. This is different to the matters in the Acting world for which this was designed.

Being as I am on Standing Committee A which is dealing with the Finance Bill I asked whether this law could be amended. Answer: National Insurance is nothing to do with Finance. Hence it would be out of order.

I do think, however, that this would work as a regulatory reform order so I will rummage that out and see what happens.

I am now also on the Procedure Committee which gives me three Committees: Regulatory Reform, Procedure and Standing Committee A. Actually I am quite pleased to be on the Procedure Committee as I am working on how to force the government to "answer the question". I have done a lot more work on this in the last week. I could probably write a reasonably good book on this now, but I am concentrating on the legal arguments that force government ministers to answer questions properly.

Being on the Procedure Committee means that I see the details of how parliamentary proceedings are managed. Interestingly Questions are part of parliamentary proceedings, but Answers are not.


Popular posts from this blog

Statement re false allegations from Esther Baker

Statement by John Hemming
I am pleased that the Police have now made it clear that there has been a concerted effort to promote false criminal allegations against me and that the allegations had no substance whatsoever.
I would like to thank Emily Cox, my children, Ayaz Iqbal (my Solicitor), my local lib dem team and many others who supported me through this dreadful experience. There are many worse things that happen to people, but this was a really bad experience.
It is bad enough to have false allegations made about yourself to the police, but to have a concerted campaign involving your political opponents and many others in public creates an environment in which it is reasonable to be concerned about ill founded vigilante attacks on your family and yourself. Luckily there was a more substantial lobby to the contrary as well, which included many people who were themselves real survivors of abuse, which has helped.
I am normally someone who helps other people fight injustice. …

Homelessness vs Selling Books

Candidates in elections tend to find themselves very busy with lots of things to do.  It is, therefore, necessary to prioritise things to ensure that the important things are dealt with.

To me the issue of homelessness and rough sleeping is an important issue.  Therefore, when Birmingham's Faith Leaders group contacted me to ask me what I would propose and whether I would work with them to make things better I was pleased to respond with my views and indicate that I would work with them after the election.

The Faith Leaders Group (Bishops and other religious leaders in Birmingham) have now sent out their report.

Sadly, according to their report,  I was the only candidate for Yardley to respond.  The group in their report said:

"Particularly disappointing was the lack of response from some of those candidates seeking re-election as MP for their respective constituencies."
It is worth looking at the priorities of my opponent.
Interestingly today she has decided to be at th…

Millionaires and politics

The Labour Party spent most of the last election criticising me for being a successful businessman (aka millionaire). That is business in the private sector employing over 250 people. It is worth looking at the situation for the Labour Candidate now:

For the year 2016-7 Annual Income from Parliament74,962Specifically for her book51,250Other media income etc5,322.82Total declared income131,534.82

Traditionally anyone with an annual income of over £100,000 has been considered to be a millionaire. I did not use my position in parliament to increase my income.

I have been asked for sources for this. This BBC piece looks at how one should define rich. It was written in 2011 so the figures will be slightly out of date. There are perhaps 2 relevant pieces:
"In 1880 a rich person would have had £100,000 in assets or an income of £10,000 a year, he says. About a hundred people a year died leaving £100,000 and by 1910 this was 250 - "a microscopic fraction of the number of death…