Saturday, 19 June 2010

Help Lines

I have no life, because I have no life I often watch BBC parliament. I was watching as usual when a discussion (not held in the commons proper) on the new expense system and Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) :
If you wish to see it yourself please follow the link:
During this, very chummy and very gentlemanly debate they attack IPSA for being bureaucratic and unhelpful. They accuse IPSA of being uncommunicative and it being impossible to meet with IPSA representative face to face.
Now I have no intention of defending IPSA. I am sure they are probably all of these things but to see a MP complaining about help liens and computer failure it sickens me. Every one, every last citizen whom they represent has to endure far worse customer service, far more remote bureaucratic systems while trying to deal with their local council or with their utility providers.
When MP complains that the expenses computer system is unreliable and difficult, they should remember that the E-government strategy was adopted by them. This strategy forced accesses to government service almost exclusively via computerised system was at the heart of the system those choose for us
When they complain about being unable to secure face to face meeting or incomprehensible help lines they should remember all the help lines there government manage that the very same accusation could be levied against. I challenge any reader to secure a face to face meeting with the tax office or navigate the maze of the tax office phone systems.
This debate was only funny because all it required Anne Robinson in order for it to be a MP watch dog special. They complain about misdirected E-mails and breach of security. I can barely stop from laughing. How many wrong letters or how much incorrect data flows from them every day without a single word.
Real people lose their houses, pay too much tax, lose jobs and much more because of these government systems and we get no special meeting in the house, we get no sympathetic press. The MP encounter one slightly difficult system and they run screaming to the press. They should be ashamed.
I will get a list of every member attending that debate and blog it soon, in the hope that when they fail to deal with your next complaint or when they seek your vote, you put them on hold or send them to the unemployment help line.

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