Five more MPs making Malcolm Rifkind’s day rate

Plus: Benefit increases; alcohol bans on trains; and cold calling

28 February 2015

9:00 AM

28 February 2015

9:00 AM

Golden league

Some MPs who earn Sir Malcolm Rifkind’s rate of £5,000 a day:
— Sir Tony Baldry (Banbury): £3,333 for four hours work as deputy chairman of Woburn Energy.
— Greg Barker (Bexhill and Battle): £20,000 for 30 hours providing advice to Ras Al Khaimah Development LLC.
— Henry Bellingham (NW Norfolk): £7,500 for 12 hours’ work as non-executive director, Developing Markets Association.
— Tim Loughton (East Worthing and Shoreham): £15–£20,000 for ‘about 20 hours a year’ as adviser to National Fostering Agency.
— John Redwood (Wokingham): £27,941 for 40 hours’ work as chairman of Investment Committee of CS Pan Asset Capital Management Ltd.
Source: Commons Register of Members’ Interests

Dry lines

The Rail Safety Standards Board proposed a complete alcohol ban on all trains. Where can’t you get a drink on a train?
— Poland introduced the first complete alcohol ban on domestic trains in 1983. But beer is now permitted.
— Scotrail has banned alcohol consumption on its trains except the Caledonian sleeper between 9 p.m. and 10 a.m. since 2012.
— Thailand introduced an outright ban on alcohol consumption on trains last year.

Welfare check

Which parliaments since 1951 saw real-terms social security rise most and least?

1964-66 (Labour) +6.7%
1979–83 (Conservative) +6.5%
1970–74 (Conservative) +6.1%
1955–59 (Conservative) +5.9%
1997–2001 (Labour) +3.3%
1992–97 (Conservative) +2%
1983–87 (Conservative) +1.5%
2010–15 (Con/Lib Dem) +0.5%

Source: DWP

True calling

Derbyshire Police said they had struggled to create ‘cold-call-free’ neighbourhoods because some people enjoyed visits by salespeople. Some revelations from a cold-calling company:
Best time to call: 4–5pm
Worst: 11am–2pm
Average no. of calls it takes to reach someone: 4.2
Proportion that result in a face-to-face appointment: 1%
Source: Gungho Marketing

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  • Yvonne & Barry Stuart-Hargreav

    Rifkind’s day rate equates to £1.3 million a year or 50 times what the average Joe gets. But he insists he deserves a higher standard of living due to his professional status. Aren’t teachers professionals? Should they get £5,000 a day too?

    • Owi Wowi

      There are professionals and there are Professionals. It takes 9 months to do a PGCE , it takes many years to become an advocate including years of practice as a solicitor. It’s about return on your investment, supply and demand. It’s not as if people go in to teaching expect a high salary and it’s not as if teacher traning courses (or schools) are choosy.

      • Yvonne & Barry Stuart-Hargreav

        It takes 4 years to become a teacher. Or if you exclude the first degree it takes just 2 years to become Barrister. Most Barristers I have met are just time served posh blokes placed there by rich families. Very few harbour any true advocacy skills, but still charge £400 an hour out of a sense of entitlement.

        • Owi Wowi

          And Solicitors are not university graduates? Either way, the bar is definitely higher in the legal profession than the teaching profession. ‘Sense of entitlement’ my arse!! No human on the planet charges less than the maximum they can get away with – it’s called the economy.

          • BottomLineDude

            You speaking for every human on the planet notwithstanding, if the minimum wage was 2p an hour I think we’d have millions of workers on 2p an hour.
            That too is called “The Economy”.. and it stinks.

          • Owi Wowi

            There are still a lot of countries with no minimum wage at all – Germany for example – are they on 2p an hour ? or are they doing quite well for themselves?

            Go and tell the 600 milion plus Chinese that have been raised out of poverty since 1981 by economically engaging the rest of the world that the economy stinks – back to subsistence farming the lot of you !!

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            Barristering is a virtual closed shop for the privately educated. Few ordinary folk can endure 5 unpaid years of articles after University. Only those with rich parents can. 950 years after the Battle of Hastings, Norman surnames proliferate among Barristers, 6 times the level of the wider population.

  • Dogsnob

    That hat is way too big for him.

    • slyblade

      Emm i thought he had a big enough head to start with?

      • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

        A ten gallon hat on a two pint head.

  • amicus

    Good luck to them.

  • Barba Rossa

    Yes no doubt the pigs are everywhere in Westminster…they are a despicable lot…more interested in feathering their own nest above all..they seem to believe they have ” Entitlement”
    We need to have a proper purge.

    • Onlineservices

      Are those feathers from the original flying pigs? Or are you barking up the wrong kettle of fish?

  • Owi Wowi

    I respect Rifkind for being honest about his motivations in this age of double-speak. As long as it is registered as an interest then it is up to the electorate whether they care or not. If you want to incentivise only people who are useless rentagobs to become politicians then banging on about ensuring MP’s salaries are no higher than those on benefits and that you have to sacrifice your hard-earned career (including nice home, car, income etc.) for the pure altruism of it all is a sure fire way to get there. That leaves you with those born rich but stupid, Union cronies and maybe the pathologically misguided ( stand up the honourable member for Brighton Pavilion).

    Look at the Labour front bench – they were mouthy middle class children, scraped into universities, student politicians then soon realised that their best bet in life was to back-stab and snipe their way to parliament. At least those that have aspirations and success know what it is like ( and what it looks like) when you do well for your self and the organisation you represent, i.e. a business, Parliament, Government or Britain.

    Labour live off Union handouts and want no better for the rest of us.

    • Yvonne & Barry Stuart-Hargreav

      A sad effort to defend immoral greed and vacuous arrogance.

      • Owi Wowi

        So easy to snipe from the gutter at your betters

        • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

          I’m sniping at unfairness and gross inequality being encouraged by our so called leaders.