The prince of lightness


On June 7th Tim Parker will step into the job of First Deputy Mayor of London and Chief Executive of the GLA Group. Later in the year he will become Chairman for Transport for London. He is a talented man. Three FTSE100 companies have turned to him for his business acumen.

From his statements it is clear Parker will aim to bring much needed financial accountability to politics in the capital. It is a pleasure to see the antithesis of former mayor Ken Livingstone, so soon after his demise. Parker states:

Throughout my business career I have been accountable to exacting shareholders. In my new role, my shareholders will be the taxpayers of London. Throughout my career I have tried to focus companies on the core product demanded by consumers. My core products now will be the key services vital to Londoners.

Presently there is a distinct lack of private sector experience in the government. Surely things would be better if a number of those running the country had an understanding of the businesses that they spend so much of their time and our money controlling and regulating.

As a case in point, Parker has learnt a lot through his experience in the real world, moving away from his Trotskyite Labour roots to embrace the free market. I wonder how many in the government would revere their tax and spend agenda, if they had benefited from a similar experience of life outside of Westminster.