Author Topic: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?  (Read 7705 times)

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Offline Tobes

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http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2015/05/13/justin-tomlinson-disabled-child-benefits-cancer-patients-bedroom-tax_n_7272956.html

Justin Tomlinson, New Disabilities Minister, Voted Against Protecting Disabled Child Benefits

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The new Conservative disabilities minister voted against protecting the benefits of disabled children and those undergoing cancer treatment.

But he did vote for the bedroom tax.

Justin Tomlinson, MP for North Swindon, was promoted by David Cameron on Wednesday as part of the cabinet reshuffle.

The 38-year-old will report to Iain Duncan Smith and will have responsibility for child poverty other disability issues.


Doesn't sound like his convictions are in the right place to act as an advocate to the most needy to me...  ???


I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Muggins

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2015, 08:25:24 AM »
There's an whole list of embarrassing things he voted for and against doing the rounds.  But I suspect it would be the same for most of them. 

The most interesting thing and perhaps the creepiest, is a posting that said he put a bet on himself becoming PM by a certain year - £50 to win and tremendous odds so he'd be half a million richer if he ever does.

Now, if that's true we could question his motives for being so ambitious - power, money or the desire to serve us - whether we voted for him or not.

Back to the disability thing - maybe no one else wanted it, it could be a poisoned chalice, after all I can't see anyone growing to love him more through it.
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Tobes

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2015, 04:10:38 PM »
Funnily enough and on this topic (cooincidentally) - I've just spoken to a friend who couldn't praise Justin enough in terms of the help he gave him regarding a recent problem with his schools interpretation of a piece of rather stupid legislation.

He said he was patient (especially so, given how he himself was brimming over with anger at the time), informative, knowledgeable - ultimately useful and, most important of all - that he had his own opinion about how that piece of legislation was being used (and misused).

Lets hope that aspect of his character comes to the fore in his new role.
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Morsey

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2015, 10:07:53 AM »
As far as I know, Tomlinson, the guru of self-promotion, NEVER voted against his party, even if it went against what we Swindonians could say was a sensitive issue. He boasted about the sponsorship, almost to the nearest penny that he got for his Conservative Club football team, Swindon Supermarine FC, yet it would appear that he voted to restrict the operations of Wonga.com who have sponsored the shirts for the past couple of seasons?

Anyway, God help those in need, disability or not during the coming term!  :knuppel2:

Offline Donian

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2015, 10:25:09 PM »
As far as I know, Tomlinson, the guru of self-promotion, NEVER voted against his party


http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/mp.php?constituency=North+Swindon&house=commons

Offline Morsey

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2015, 10:18:31 AM »
Thanks for the link ... difficult to see anything there that he rebelled against in his 2.3% of disobedience that would be in any way connected to Swindon's cause? But, thanks anyway. :agreed:

Offline Tobes

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2015, 06:41:40 PM »
Both Justin and Robert ought to beware the 'Shades of Snelgrove' effect; plenty of people seem to agree that she's a nice person (I missed that aspect myself, but I'm prepared to believe those who might be more open minded than myself) - BUT (and that ought to be in font 48) more people than I can easily name have commented that she was a career politician first and foremost, as reflected by her equally slavish voting record.

True democracy isn't served by brown-nosing conformists - its best served by a mixture of personal conviction, a willingness to listen to and reflect the views and interests of their constituency, and to be scrupulously open and honest about any conflicts therein.

Anne Snelgrove's failure may have been down to national trends - but I'm quite sure hubris played its part too. She developed a reputation for not listening and to treating her parliamentary role as through she was Westminster's representative in Swindon, rather than the other way around.

Lets hope our two MPs remember and reflect upon her perceived failing and don't go down the same path.
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Donian

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2015, 07:21:20 PM »
They've both been bound by the Ministerial Code for almost a year now so have to vote with the Government or they'll get sacked.

Offline Tobes

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2015, 10:31:48 PM »
Then we'll enjoy highlighting their inability to reflect the mandate under which they were elected.

Business as usual!

Out of interest, can you point me to the bit of the ministerial code which obligates them to always vote with the government - even if they might have sound and valid reasons (which might also include the opinion and interests of their own constituents?) to vote against them?

Because if you can - it would seem to sit in direct contradiction with several sections of the following -

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Annex – The Seven Principles of Public Life[edit]
These principles were published by the Committee on Standards in Public Life in 1995.[14]

Selflessness: ministers should act entirely in the public interest.
Integrity: no financial obligations should be accepted if they could undermine the minister's position.
Objectivity: when making appointments, decisions should be based on merit.
Accountability: all public office-holders are accountable, and should co-operate with all scrutiny procedures.
Openness: all decisions should be justified, and information should be restricted only when necessary for the public interest.
Honesty: public office-holders are required, by duty, to be honest in all their dealings and business.
Leadership: the principles should be supported and upheld by leadership and example.
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Donian

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2015, 03:38:34 PM »
Out of interest, can you point me to the bit of the ministerial code which obligates them to always vote with the government - even if they might have sound and valid reasons (which might also include the opinion and interests of their own constituents?) to vote against them?

"3.9 Parliamentary Private Secretaries are expected to support the Government in important divisions in the House. No Parliamentary Private Secretary who votes against the Government can retain his or her position."

And that's just PPSs (Tomlinson was PPS to Vaizey the Culture Minister before the election). I thought it was explicit that Ministers but it appears not. It however goes without saying that a Minister voting against the government would get sacked as they are part of government. For example Robin Cook had to resign before he voted against the Iraq war.

Personally, I don't see a contradiction with the principles of public life.

Offline Tobes

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2015, 06:28:25 PM »
Interesting. In which case, you'd effectively endorse the idea that ministers are nothing but slaves to the party manifesto? In fact, it looks like you've provided evidence that precisely proves that contention.

This to me is a superb and utterly clear example of the rot which lies at the core of our supposedly democratic system; that power in the form of a policy making position is predetermined by an obligation to follow ideology absolutely, and without exception unless you want to cede influence. That means a bad idea has to go effectively unchallenged if an otherwise morally capable minister has decided to 'take the queens shilling'. Accepting a pps or ministerial position is akin to self-castration - making freedom of honest expression on a range of given subjects as impossible as it would someone taking on a paid role for a large corporation.

Thank you. I now hold ministers in a refreshingly new depth of contempt -  it seems like the ultimate abrogation of democratic duty; to represent and act with honest conviction (unless of course, we proles are expected to believe that ministers and pps really do believe and follow every aspect of government policy ;) )

And politicians seriously wonder why they are increasingly regarded as morally bankrupt and dishonest....? :(

Thanks god at least for back benchers. At least votes might be subject to some kind of honest assessment. I'll have to re-assess my own voting habits mind you. Any person I vote into government will certainly not receive a second vote from me should they accept such a binding position, as it's now clear that they cannot even pretend to represent my or my fellow electors views, should they run contrary to government policy.
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Donian

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2015, 12:32:36 AM »
Interesting. In which case, you'd effectively endorse the idea that ministers are nothing but slaves to the party manifesto?

A very well written post Tobes and I agree with a lot that you say. In answer to the above question I wouldn't call Ministers "slaves". A minister has influence over the wording and what is exactly is included in bills. Also any government, even one from a single party, is still a coalition of different people and political wings that requires careful leadership.

It's also interesting to note that by convention the House of Lords will not oppose any legislation which was part of a government's election manifesto.

Offline Tobes

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Re: Justin Tomlinson receives a potentially embarrassing promotion?
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2015, 07:36:54 PM »
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A very well written post Tobes and I agree with a lot that you say.

No, thank you for educating me about something which I'd had no previous idea about. I guess I perhaps ought to temper some of my criticism of Anne Snelgrove and her vacillating and evasive response to questions on ID cards. Perhaps she herself harboured serious doubts, but was utterly unable to express them - or to even respond honestly and openly for fear of being sacked from her post.

What an appalling and invidious position to place any Minister or PPS. Its utterly ridiculous in fact - because its quite clear that they won't even be able to publicly debate an issue if they know its likely to become policy, for fear of looking disingenuous should they be later forced to do a volte-face if the issue comes to a vote.

Its another example of how party politics has reduced Westminster to the level of two opposing groups of rival football fans - full of chanting and tribality, and about as objective too.

It leads me to conclude that finding out that your local MP has been elected into a government position is a cause for deep concern, NOT pride or celebration; they are effectively being prevented from being able to act in an even and open minded way to any concern you might bring to their attention, as all their reactions and assistance will obviously be rigidly linked to government policy. All of them must be only too aware of the dangers of looking inconsistent in comparison to the handcuffs which have been slapped on them; slavish conformity becomes their only option.

Very depressing, but a very welcome illumination Donian. Thank you once again.
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'