A View From Middle England - Conservative with a slight libertarian touch - For Christian charity and traditional belief - Free Enterprise NOT Covert Corporatism

Sunday, June 05, 2011

The long hours worked by MPs

I don't know why our MPs are expected to burn the candle at both ends. Many of the new intake, and it was one of the largest ever, say they expected to work a 60-hour week at Westminster. Surprised, they now find on average it is 69 hours. Which would suggest that some do a lot more. I can't begin to think why we should have haggard and homesick MPs running the country. Britain seems obsessed with long hours. In fact, the longer the hours the worse the country gets. Borrowing still up in the stratosphere. What is it with them?

There was a time when MPs did far fewer hours. The British Empire was overseen by people who had a relaxed attitude to work. Why does David Cameron think he needs to be everywhere, doing everything? It's such a ridiculous state of affairs for the affairs of state.

Delegation is the thing. Surely once a policy has been worked out it can be followed through by lesser mortals. We pay MPs badly, vested interests are all over Parliament lobbying here and there, tying them up in time and trouble. Maybe it's a case of too much talking and not enough doing. We need a proper revision of parliamentary workings. Currently we have a bureaucratic machine checking and stamping expenses. It can't be beyond the ken of some to devise a working week that works well for the 21st century - surely!


Your post is really depressing. When I first read it, I wondered if I should comment at all. We are in high agreement about this kind of behavior. I don't know how much reading you have done on the topics of sleep deprivation and workaholism. I have done more than the average person. Believe it or not, these problems appear to be worse in the U.S. than in the U.K.

I hate putting in a link to a rather long post on my own blog, but it does contain, I think, pointers to both books on these topics and my own perspective. A few people have complained to me that this piece is more about myself than the topics of sleep deprivation and workaholism, but I suspect that is more a defensive reaction on their part. I did use myself as an example to help illustrate what humans can do, in part because I actually have done things like run a marathon and still run or swim six days a week. I called my post An Interesting Side Comment by Michael Griffin. Michael Griffin was NASA Administrator from 2005 until the beginning of 2009.

Thank you for putting up with this. Your blog is excellent.

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