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Why don't we have ministers with relevant backgrounds?

14 replies

IHTC · 30/12/2020 18:05

E.g our current health secretary has zero experience in healthcare. Why don't we have people who have experience on the frontline; who know the challenges inside and out?

I would very unlikely get a job I had no relevant experience in. It's so strange!

OP posts:
Sarahandduck18 · 30/12/2020 18:12

So the civil servants can control them?

Dilbertian · 30/12/2020 18:14

Because people who can, do.

Teachers are too busy teaching to be politicians (and therefore have no chance to become Minister for Education).

MillieEpple · 30/12/2020 18:18

They aren't meant to get too in with the civil service and do what the civil service want as the civil service is unelected.

titchy · 30/12/2020 18:30

Because their role is to decide policy along party lines. Civil servants, who do have sector expertise (and also those that work in a sector via consultations), do the detail of applying the policy.

pinbinpin · 30/12/2020 18:34

Yes! totally agree! Especially DoH. minister for health shouldn't be someone that faffed around doing PPE or Art History - it's ridiculous. When I am in charge they will be required to be a practicing or recently practicing doctor or scientist with relevant degrees in medicine and science. I will also make them all do a Virology module.

PatriciaHolm · 30/12/2020 18:41

Because we'd have to completely change the way we elected MPs, for a start, in order to get some sort of pool of MPS suitable for the jobs! Labour, for example, only has 1 MP who was a qualified doctor - Rosena Allin-Khan.

The idea has always been that MPs are primarily elected to represent their constituencies, and that is most all will ever do (or want to do).

IDontMindMarmite · 30/12/2020 18:45

I completely agree OP, it's ridiculous. However I am pretty sceptical and believe that whoever wants positions of power probably shouldn't have them

titchy · 30/12/2020 19:34

@pinbinpin

Yes! totally agree! Especially DoH. minister for health shouldn't be someone that faffed around doing PPE or Art History - it's ridiculous. When I am in charge they will be required to be a practicing or recently practicing doctor or scientist with relevant degrees in medicine and science. I will also make them all do a Virology module.

What if none of the elected MPs are medics?
PastMyBestBeforeDate · 30/12/2020 19:37

I'd settle for competent grown ups.

CraftyGin · 30/12/2020 19:40

There are quite a few MPs with medical degrees. My MP for one.

Brownwhiteyellow · 30/12/2020 19:52

But equally in business, it is not uncommon to have CEOs or execs from outside the industry or heading up a function they have never worked a day in.

cdtaylornats · 10/01/2021 18:07

If you have ministers who are specialists in a subject then two things happen, they never get to try different ministries and you get stagnation of ideas.

inquietant · 10/01/2021 18:16

It is usually undesirable to have someone from that sector, because they tend to think the way they were taught to think in their early career. This is not the case where you need someone with specialist expertise, like Attorney General.

The real issue we have at the moment is the sheer lack of ability of most of the cabinet. Some of them are seriously lacking in brain cells it appears.

The Tory party has a bit of a talent problem (due to their membership being very aged, so only a few young members, and often pretty similar) and the fact that all cabinet ministers had to swear they would vote for brexit meant they were picking from half the pool.

What we need is a more talented and varied pool of people.

Letsleepingdogslie8 · 10/01/2021 18:20

Civil Servants with relevant experience? Generally not. I chortled when a friend got appointed to a Rural Affairs role - he is a 100% city-dweller who wouldn’t know a cow if it came up and kicked him up the backside.

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