Yes, obviously, there is the Daily Mash’s insistence that The Guardian is always wrong, about everything. But this is a quite remarkable missing of basic reality:
A Conservative parliamentary candidate has been criticised for being paid £25,000 a year to head up a university thinktank that does not yet exist.
Andrea Jenkyns, who was MP for the West Yorkshire constituency of Morley and Outwood and is standing for re-election, has been receiving payments from the University of Bolton since July for her role in the venture.
Details were first uncovered by Research Professional News in the parliamentary register of MPs’ financial interests, which records income received by MPs in addition to their main salary.
Guardian inquiries later revealed an individual cash donation of £2,000 to Jenkyns, recorded in the register in February and made by George Holmes, who is vice-chancellor of the University of Bolton. Holmes told the Guardian it was a private donation and did not come from the university.
According to an entry in the register for 5 November, Jenkyns is being paid £25,000 per year for her role as director of the National Centre for Higher Education Policy, University of Bolton, but there appears to be no mention of the centre or Jenkyns’ role in it on the university website and there has been no public announcement of the role.
The payments to Jenkyns, for eight hours’ work a week, began at the start of July.
So, how do new organisations happen? People work on them before they open, obviously enough. So, how do we get people to do work on something before it is open? We have to pay them for the work they do, obviously.
You know, shopfitters get paid before the shop opens. People designing think tanks get paid before the think tank opens. People designing new sections for The Guardian get paid to design new sections for The Guardian before the Guardian prints those new sections.
How does anyone think the world should work?