Quote: Originally Posted by Machjo
Not to defend socialists here, but you do seem to express a certain bias. I don't know if Duceppe himself considers himself a socialist (though I know he was involved in the labour union movement for awhile), but I'm sure at least some in his party are probably self-described socialists.So how would this fit in with Duceppe not being among the top 20 spenders if spending and socilaism necessarily go hand in hand? I could see a self-proclaimed socialist who believes in increasing government funding to help the less fortunate members of society but who would still spend little on himself. I could also see the opposite with a hard-core capitalist MP who'd splurge on himself. I doubt very much that ideology itself will play much of a role in how an MP spends his money. I think personal character and self-discipline are more relevant here than ideology.
That said, I do agree that looking at an MP's personal expenses does reveal something about that MP's character, and for those who vote on an MP's character, it will certainly affect their vote. But again, I disagree with you that ideology plays much of a role in all of this.
I would also avoid voting strictly on this. After all, an MP with greater expenses might have a very legitimate reason for it as you'd pointed out above. So I would look at not only how much they spent, but also at how they spent it.
Actually, Gilles Duceppe is a somewhat reformed Maoist. No, I'm not kidding, look it up. He is now a socialist, having gotten over his early flirtation with fanaticism.
However, he rules the Bloc with an iron fist, and if he ever came to power in any political entity, the wise thing to do would be to shoot him.
That said, I actually LIKE the guy.......he lives his beliefs, and I would sooner sit down over a beer with him than with any damned idiot urban, intellectual, hypocritical silver spoon socialist come down from the ivory tower to save me from myself. (ie Jack Layton)
I would bet Duceppe's expenses are closer to the bottom than any of the other party leaders.