If you've nothing to hide...

Jan 16, 2009 08:46 · 207 words · 1 minute read politics

[![Trough] One of the lines that gets trotted out by the pro-ID-card-and-database-state lobby is “if you’ve got nothing to hide, you’ve got nothing to fear”.

This morning I’m reading news that disclosure of MPs’ expenses is to be blocked with an expedited parliamentary order.

If you ask the general public to rank professions by trustworthiness, MPs appear somewhere below estate agents and above members of the Greatest Liar In The World Winners Alumni Association.   Jeremy Paxman’s interviewing technique is based on the question “why is this lying bastard lying to me?“   The joke goes “how do you tell when a politician is lying? Their lips are moving”.

By the law of averages, some MPs must be decent, honest, upstanding citizens.  And some must be lying, conniving, self-serving, scheming little shits.

But they don’t want us - the general public, the people who pay for all this, the people THEY represent - seeing the detail of how they spend their expenses.  £1,920 on plants and pergolas. £1,600 for window cleaning. £40,000 to a family member who didn’t actually do any work. And so on.

“If you’ve got nothing to hide, you’ve got nothing to fear.”

Could we apply the same principle to MPs’ expenses?

_[CC-licensed picture by Drumaboy]