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Make a meal of it.

SO SNP MSP Joan McAlpine, on her pounds 57,000 a year and counting, apologises for choosing to stay at her publicly subsidised lunch with the First Minister in the Parliament restaurant, instead of doing her job in the debating chamber ... and not for the first time either.

There will be bairns in the schemes going to bed hungry tonight, while MSPs tuck into their publicly funded Perthshire lamb with spring vegetables and salsa verde, and smoked venison with Strathdon cheese.

I'm sure that the MSPs will discuss the plight of the hungry children while they are stuffing their faces.

If we reduced their salaries to 1.5 times the average weekly wage, and made them pay for their own food, like normal folks do, those and such as those would toddle off to the private sector, where they belong, leaving parliamentary service to the truly dedicated.

The First Minister's spokesman says that he is standing by McAlpine, his parliamentary liaison officer.

No he's not - he's sitting at the same subsidised table.

And it's high time we did something about it.

David Fiddimore, Edinburgh
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:May 19, 2012
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