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Paid vacations for ministers

Promote better understanding.
 
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The idea is simple. The foreign secretary, or whatever s/he is called where you are, really ought to be able to speak a few languages and have a bit of experience of other cultures. The same may well hold true for other ministers.

In the UK, parliament does nothing during the summer. The idea is for ministers to spend some of this holiday on a some expenses paid trip to a different country. Maybe China, perhaps Afghanistan, maybe Israel. Actual war zones should probably be excluded. The destination would be decided by a lottery, or possibly a public vote so that the public feel they are getting their moneys worth. (Possibly leading to poor Tony having to spend a month in Siberia, but never mind).

Hopefully they will return home with a better understanding of the rest of the world.

RobertKidney, Jan 31 2004

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       /Actual war zones should probably be excluded/   

       Why? Might make them think twice about sending other people in on the flimsiest of evidence.   

       "I can assure your listeners that Britain will enter the war zone when the five tests have been satisfied, that is when the time is right, and not before."
egbert, Jan 31 2004
  

       I think that the idea has merits except for the fact that many MPs and local councillors take far too many expenses paid 'fact finding' trips.
Take it out of their own pocket to ensure that they derive the maximum educational benefit. *After all, they are making everyone else pay for their education*.
  

       *UK only rant
gnomethang, Jan 31 2004
  
      
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