By this time next week, the 'Millies' will have been dished out to the servicemen and women who have so bravely served the Home Nations. For those of you who don't know (please educate yourselves immediately) these are officially titled 'The Sun's Annual Military Awards'. I can only applaud the work that The Sun has put into supporting the causes close to the troops that protect us. I wear a Help4Heroes wristband at all times, and often carry my long-departed Grandad's service medal with me as a reminder of what once was.
A very significant aspect of this year's ceremony is that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (Wills and Kate, our future King and stunningly beautiful Queen) will be in attendance, as will Prince Henry of Wales (more usually known as Prince Harry, or 'the ginger one'). It will be the first time since Wills and Kate's wedding that all 3 have attended an official engagement. Finally, there are members of the Royal Family who appear to have an understanding of the public's outlook. Members of the Royal Family who appear normal; who are (rather tellingly) serving in the Forces themselves!
HOWEVER, the troops are not QUITE getting what they deserve just yet. David 'The Punchable' Cameron has little-to-no chance of receiving a medal for his handling of Forces' pay. He seems to be ignoring government rules by refusing to let an independent body set troops' wages. The Prime Minister has included the Forces in his 1% public sector pay cap, meaning squaddies, corporals and sergeants lose money while benefit claimants rake in huge rises. This is nothing but an injustice.
May I suggest that Mr. Cameron sits down his cup and saucer of Earl Grey on Wednesday 21/12/2011, switches his TV over to ITV and give the Millies a watch. I would then invite him to ponder the following:
Who deserves extra? Those in uniform risking their lives on our behalf (and at his instruction) or welfare claimants sitting at home watching Loose Women? And for what it's worth, I include our 'MP's within the latter definition.
Our MP's are no longer allowed to vet their own expenses and sting us for every luxury they may take a fancy to; and bloody rightly so!!! Back in 2009, they were exposed for conning and cheating their way to duck houses, pornographic videos, moat excavation costs, second homes that weren't actually homes, chocolate bars and so on and so forth. Remember all that? And remember how they reacted? "Oh Lordy", they all wailed, once the details had been released - "How terribly we have let you all down!"
They wrung their hands in public. "We must reform, change our ways and try ever so hard to recapture your trust. Because that is what hurts most of all, the fact we have lost your trust! You, the voters, who we respect so much, and in whose service we labour!" And now, just two years down the line it's a case of "Actually, bugger the trust matey; We'd like our duck houses back, please!"
The House of Commons Select Committee, which looks into MP's expenses, has decided that the independent body which tries to stop them fleecing us for millions should have its powers reduced! The cheek! They don't like people asking them difficult questions about why they're claiming so much money from us. In future, they say, MPs should be allowed to oversee their own expenses because the current system is 'damaging democracy'. Also, they should get even more money for things such as travel and accommodation. Oh, and a pay rise if that's okay; or even if it isn't.
The incredible thing is, that even now the MPs are claiming more for their expenses than when they did when they were lying to us about their second homes and making us pay through the nose for trimming the clematis on the walls of their platinum-plated mansions. And that's under the new (supposedly 'tough') rules introduced when they wanted to 'restore our faith'. HA!!
And now - just like the bastard 'bankers' that gambled away non-existent money - they think they've been under the cosh for long enough and want to go back to the old system. And because they are MPs, who run the country, this is what will probably happen. All of this when we are being told to tighten our belts, and skilful, hard-working people (non-scroungers) are being laid off from jobs up and down the land!
Mr. Cameron, you said we were all in this together? Pffffffffft! Aye, and my dogs can shit gold.