Monday, September 27, 2004

Nice work if you can get it

What does a MEP do when he is kicked out at the election – apart from line up at the bank to draw his Euro-pension?

Well, if your name is Bryan Cassidy, former Tory MEP for the South West – and you lost your cushy number in 1999 when UKIP took one of its first seats – you get yourself appointed as a member of the European Economic and Social Committee. You then front highly lucrative "high-level business briefings" in Brussels for a leading conference organiser, telling them how the EU works.

For this prestigious service, the delegates are charged £999 a throw (plus VAT) and, to make sure they think they're getting their money's worth, you get EU fonctionnaires to give some of the lectures. You then throw in a tour of the European parliament, with a reception and dinner, hosted by some of your old mates who managed to keep their seats.

Nice work if you can get it.

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