MP Bob Russell tells constituent: Stop whingeing and get a life

Gazette: Bob Russell: "Haven't you got anything better to do with your sad life?" Bob Russell: "Haven't you got anything better to do with your sad life?"

COLCHESTER MP Bob Russell has told a constituent to “get a life and stop whingeing” in an official response to an inquiry.

Garry Burbage, of Canterbury Road, Colchester, asked Mr Russell if taxpayers’ money would be used to pay for Prince William’s wedding to Kate Middleton next year.

Mr Russell replied: “Haven’t you got something better to do with your sad life? What a miserable person you must be!”

He added: “Events surrounding the Royal wedding will help create an economic plus. I suggest you get a life and stop whinging.” Mr Burbage, a carer for mental health patients, said he was stunned by the letter.

He said: “I consider the response I received as a personal attack about myself as an individual and my life, which Mr Russell knows nothing about.

“I find it incomprehensible to be told I have a sad life and must be a miserable person – I was only asking a question as a taxpayer and voter.”

Lib Dem Mr Russell said he wanted it made clear the letter had been passed to the Gazette and other media organisations by Kim Naish, a Labour Colchester councillor. He said: “I suspected the letter was from a Labour-oriented person, trying to entrap me into saying something. Now Mr Burbage has passed it to Kim Naish, it confirms my suspicions.

“I’m more than happy if Mr Burbage wants to let the world know what a miserable sod he is.

“He wrote a very out of order, critical letter and I have replied in the same vein.”

Mr Burbage’s original letter to Mr Russell said: “We are all being told we must make economies, suffer cuts in services, endure a long period of financial hardship and remember that ‘we’re all in this together’.

“Can I, therefore, take it for granted not one penny of taxpayers’ money will be used to pay for the Royal wedding next year?”

Berechurch representative Mr Naish said it was a legitimate inquiry and did not warrant Mr Russell’s “rude” reply.

He said: “I think he should be sacked for it. If any employee of a company spoke to someone like that in their professional capacity, they would be sacked on the spot.”

Mr Russell claimed: “This is nothing but a Labour Party stitch-up.”

Comments (22)

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2:30pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Say It As It Is OK? says...

Bob Russell said:
“I suspected the letter was from a Labour-oriented person, trying to entrap me into saying something".

Well you got that right Bob and fell for it hook, line and sinker!
Bob Russell said: “I suspected the letter was from a Labour-oriented person, trying to entrap me into saying something". Well you got that right Bob and fell for it hook, line and sinker! Say It As It Is OK?

2:57pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Andy Hamilton says...

Mr Russell is right in supporting public funding of a wonderful royal wedding. The revenue from tourism will more than compensate.
It is sad he could not express his reply in a more tactful way. The easiest and quickest solution would be to make a public apology explaining the stress he has suffered recently.
That said, I doubt any Colchester councillor can justify complaining to the parliamentary standards. I have frequently complained, at Council meetings, about the dishonourable behaviour of this culturally barbaric Council.
Mr Russell is right in supporting public funding of a wonderful royal wedding. The revenue from tourism will more than compensate. It is sad he could not express his reply in a more tactful way. The easiest and quickest solution would be to make a public apology explaining the stress he has suffered recently. That said, I doubt any Colchester councillor can justify complaining to the parliamentary standards. I have frequently complained, at Council meetings, about the dishonourable behaviour of this culturally barbaric Council. Andy Hamilton

3:01pm Tue 14 Dec 10

BillBill says...

Regardless of what party Mr Burbage supports, Mr Russell's response is demeaning to the role of MP, himself personally, and the taxpayers he is supposed to represent, whatever party they may belong to. Shameful.
Regardless of what party Mr Burbage supports, Mr Russell's response is demeaning to the role of MP, himself personally, and the taxpayers he is supposed to represent, whatever party they may belong to. Shameful. BillBill

3:11pm Tue 14 Dec 10

romantic says...

Hey, at least he got a personal reply. You don't get that from every organisation these days. People who deal with the public have to put up with abuse on a daily basis, believe me. I think the trick is to say "get a life" without acually saying it. I don't think he should even apologise - why is this guy sending a private letter to the press in the first place?
Hey, at least he got a personal reply. You don't get that from every organisation these days. People who deal with the public have to put up with abuse on a daily basis, believe me. I think the trick is to say "get a life" without acually saying it. I don't think he should even apologise - why is this guy sending a private letter to the press in the first place? romantic

4:36pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Sdapeze says...

Another Labour Paty attempt at a stitch-up. I well remember the attack made on Councillor Hogg by the same people a few years ago. Well done Bob. Tell it as it is. And good luck to the Royal couple for the impending wedding. It will unite the country.
Another Labour Paty attempt at a stitch-up. I well remember the attack made on Councillor Hogg by the same people a few years ago. Well done Bob. Tell it as it is. And good luck to the Royal couple for the impending wedding. It will unite the country. Sdapeze

4:46pm Tue 14 Dec 10

jut1972 says...

Bob is really on a roll this week isn't he?

I wonder where this "economic plus" will come from? Just how many souvenir tea towels are we expecting to shift?

Whilst I have been critical of Bob lately at least he hasn't any 17 year old dancers on the go ... have you Bob ;)
Bob is really on a roll this week isn't he? I wonder where this "economic plus" will come from? Just how many souvenir tea towels are we expecting to shift? Whilst I have been critical of Bob lately at least he hasn't any 17 year old dancers on the go ... have you Bob ;) jut1972

5:29pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Mr Anory. Jack says...

Oh dear oh dear, dont know quite what to think about Bob the Gob just lately.
I must admire his "go gettem" speaking though,
a sort of libdem style copied from our Clacton MP, DC.
Oh dear oh dear, dont know quite what to think about Bob the Gob just lately. I must admire his "go gettem" speaking though, a sort of libdem style copied from our Clacton MP, DC. Mr Anory. Jack

7:20pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Youngone85 says...

any one know Bob's email address..... I'd like to email him and ask if I can have a tax rebate for paying for my own wedding.
any one know Bob's email address..... I'd like to email him and ask if I can have a tax rebate for paying for my own wedding. Youngone85

7:29pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Feisty CBC says...

Came across well on Look East tonight. Not sure I should, but can't stop grinning from ear to ear.
Came across well on Look East tonight. Not sure I should, but can't stop grinning from ear to ear. Feisty CBC

8:03pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Albion21 says...

I feel so upset about BR's response to this letter.
I am a 'Labour-orientated' person but I have felt that he has been a brilliant MP in the past, regardless of political party. At family meals he is regularly praised!
The royal wedding and the funding for it is a concern I have heard voiced on MANY an occasion from people of ALL party persuasions - so its an opinion not only reserved for those with a 'sad life'.
Regardless of anyones view on the wedding he should not have conducted himself in such a way! The letter was rude and has made me rethink any support I had for him.
I only hope it was due to the fact he is under a lot of pressure from the excellent choices he has just made regarding student fees.
The fact that I know the person that wrote the letter actually does a lot of amazing work in the public sector for those with disabilities, made me angrier at BR's comment that he could volunteer on the day of the royal wedding if he was that bothered about it!
I think BR came across extremely badly on Look East. It was childish to bash the Labour party - many I know that are Labour people in Colchester are fully in support of Bob Russell. I fear this will change.
I feel so upset about BR's response to this letter. I am a 'Labour-orientated' person but I have felt that he has been a brilliant MP in the past, regardless of political party. At family meals he is regularly praised! The royal wedding and the funding for it is a concern I have heard voiced on MANY an occasion from people of ALL party persuasions - so its an opinion not only reserved for those with a 'sad life'. Regardless of anyones view on the wedding he should not have conducted himself in such a way! The letter was rude and has made me rethink any support I had for him. I only hope it was due to the fact he is under a lot of pressure from the excellent choices he has just made regarding student fees. The fact that I know the person that wrote the letter actually does a lot of amazing work in the public sector for those with disabilities, made me angrier at BR's comment that he could volunteer on the day of the royal wedding if he was that bothered about it! I think BR came across extremely badly on Look East. It was childish to bash the Labour party - many I know that are Labour people in Colchester are fully in support of Bob Russell. I fear this will change. Albion21

8:16pm Tue 14 Dec 10

25414nora says...

Garry Burbage does a really worthwhile job, as carer for patients with mental disorders, I would say he 'HAS' got a life, 'thank you very much'. Bob Russell has only been in government 5 minutes and already he has lost the plot. He needs to take control of his own state of mind, otherwise he may find himself under the professional supervision of the same Mr Burbage.
Garry Burbage does a really worthwhile job, as carer for patients with mental disorders, I would say he 'HAS' got a life, 'thank you very much'. Bob Russell has only been in government 5 minutes and already he has lost the plot. He needs to take control of his own state of mind, otherwise he may find himself under the professional supervision of the same Mr Burbage. 25414nora

9:00pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Boris says...

Poor Bob does seem to be going through a rough patch at the moment. First the overpriced toilet rolls, now this hasty reaction to someone who was going to milk it for all he was worth.
I profoundly disagree with Bob over the royal wedding, just as I agree with Mr. Burbage that it is not something the public should pay for, at a time when the government is abolishing EMA, school sports partnerships, etc etc etc. But Mr Burbage was utterly out of order in roping in Kim Il Naish to make political capital out of his letter.
I suppose "Bob the Gob" is a better sobriquet than "Bog Roll Bob". And at least he has not got mad staring eyes like that MP for Clacton. But Bob needs to start taking a modest daily dose of tranquillisers.
Youngone85, just google "bob russell mp", you will get his website, and on the home page it gives his e-mail address.
Poor Bob does seem to be going through a rough patch at the moment. First the overpriced toilet rolls, now this hasty reaction to someone who was going to milk it for all he was worth. I profoundly disagree with Bob over the royal wedding, just as I agree with Mr. Burbage that it is not something the public should pay for, at a time when the government is abolishing EMA, school sports partnerships, etc etc etc. But Mr Burbage was utterly out of order in roping in Kim Il Naish to make political capital out of his letter. I suppose "Bob the Gob" is a better sobriquet than "Bog Roll Bob". And at least he has not got mad staring eyes like that MP for Clacton. But Bob needs to start taking a modest daily dose of tranquillisers. Youngone85, just google "bob russell mp", you will get his website, and on the home page it gives his e-mail address. Boris

11:36pm Tue 14 Dec 10

Mr Anory. Jack says...

pmsl @ Boris here:-
"And at least he has not got mad staring eyes like that MP for Clacton".
I agree our great MP here in clacton DOES actualy look at you when you talk to him, he does listen while he does that, meanwhile we have "others" out there that just about listen to your own personal gripes and moans, while shuffling papers and aps on iphones.
Personal contact involves looking at you Boris, or have you never quite come accross that with your party members yet.
pmsl @ Boris here:- "And at least he has not got mad staring eyes like that MP for Clacton". I agree our great MP here in clacton DOES actualy look at you when you talk to him, he does listen while he does that, meanwhile we have "others" out there that just about listen to your own personal gripes and moans, while shuffling papers and aps on iphones. Personal contact involves looking at you Boris, or have you never quite come accross that with your party members yet. Mr Anory. Jack

12:16am Wed 15 Dec 10

Albion21 says...

I think Mr Burbage had every right to bring this letter to the attention of the media. People seem to be focussing on the letter being in the public domain rather than the fact such a rude letter was written in the first place! Unacceptable!
I think Mr Burbage had every right to bring this letter to the attention of the media. People seem to be focussing on the letter being in the public domain rather than the fact such a rude letter was written in the first place! Unacceptable! Albion21

12:44am Wed 15 Dec 10

Boris says...

The silliest comment so far has been that by Kim Il Naish, who is quoted as saying “I think he should be sacked for it. If any employee of a company spoke to someone like that in their professional capacity, they would be sacked on the spot.”
Mr Naish well knows that an MP is nobody's employee. He is elected and he holds his seat until the next general election.
Bob Russell flying off the handle like he did is regrettable, but utterly trivial.
When John Prescott was physically attacked by someone, and retaliated by punching his attacker in the face, most of us sympathised. I think Bob will get a lot of sympathy over this.
Mr. Burbage is to be respected for his important professional work, but if he wanted to score points off our MP he seems to have gone about it the wrong way.
This storm in a tea cup will soon die down, and we can then go back to judging Bob on more important matters, such as his opposition to the most vicious of his government's cuts.
The silliest comment so far has been that by Kim Il Naish, who is quoted as saying “I think he should be sacked for it. If any employee of a company spoke to someone like that in their professional capacity, they would be sacked on the spot.” Mr Naish well knows that an MP is nobody's employee. He is elected and he holds his seat until the next general election. Bob Russell flying off the handle like he did is regrettable, but utterly trivial. When John Prescott was physically attacked by someone, and retaliated by punching his attacker in the face, most of us sympathised. I think Bob will get a lot of sympathy over this. Mr. Burbage is to be respected for his important professional work, but if he wanted to score points off our MP he seems to have gone about it the wrong way. This storm in a tea cup will soon die down, and we can then go back to judging Bob on more important matters, such as his opposition to the most vicious of his government's cuts. Boris

12:57am Wed 15 Dec 10

Albion21 says...

I know for sure that Mr Burbage did not count on 'scoring points off' of an MP. He wrote a letter to ask questions. Thats it. The reply warranted some attention! It was hardly an egg being thrown at a Prescott!! - This was (originally) a private (perfectly civil) letter written to an MP to ask some questions! It wasn't intended to be so public... and therefore was not meant to be a 'trap' by Labour or a publicity stunt by an individual. If I had written such a letter I would not have expected SUCH a reply!
I know for sure that Mr Burbage did not count on 'scoring points off' of an MP. He wrote a letter to ask questions. Thats it. The reply warranted some attention! It was hardly an egg being thrown at a Prescott!! - This was (originally) a private (perfectly civil) letter written to an MP to ask some questions! It wasn't intended to be so public... and therefore was not meant to be a 'trap' by Labour or a publicity stunt by an individual. If I had written such a letter I would not have expected SUCH a reply! Albion21

12:57am Wed 15 Dec 10

Boris says...

Jack, you must have met Mr Carswell many times, but I have never met him once. Has he really got mad staring eyes, like an extraterrestrial, as he appears to have in all the newspaper photos of him? If he really is a member of the human race, why doesn't he come across as looking a bit more "normal"?
And Jack, what party do you think I belong to? I don't belong to any.
Jack, you must have met Mr Carswell many times, but I have never met him once. Has he really got mad staring eyes, like an extraterrestrial, as he appears to have in all the newspaper photos of him? If he really is a member of the human race, why doesn't he come across as looking a bit more "normal"? And Jack, what party do you think I belong to? I don't belong to any. Boris

11:09am Wed 15 Dec 10

Mr Anory. Jack says...

Ah Boris my friend:-
"And Jack, what party do you think I belong to? I don't belong to any".
an armchair critic without a cause perhaps?
re- meeting DC, yes, on first name terms my friend.
Try meeting him to discuss why, in your estimation, is "he really is a member of the human race"
If you took time to research your finger pointing @ DC, you will find DC to have come not from outerspace, but very renouned, infact, famous parents!
A childhood background to be proud of too!
NOT like some gobby MP`s we have in current leadership of your areas residents!
Hardly an alien then is he..
DC would find your comments rather funny though.....
Ah Boris my friend:- "And Jack, what party do you think I belong to? I don't belong to any". an armchair critic without a cause perhaps? re- meeting DC, yes, on first name terms my friend. Try meeting him to discuss why, in your estimation, is "he really is a member of the human race" If you took time to research your finger pointing @ DC, you will find DC to have come not from outerspace, but very renouned, infact, famous parents! A childhood background to be proud of too! NOT like some gobby MP`s we have in current leadership of your areas residents! Hardly an alien then is he.. DC would find your comments rather funny though..... Mr Anory. Jack

9:08pm Wed 15 Dec 10

Andy Hamilton says...

I thought the press comments would soon go but a feature in the East Anglian and two days running in the Gazette! Would this happen to other local MPs in a similar situation?
I thought the press comments would soon go but a feature in the East Anglian and two days running in the Gazette! Would this happen to other local MPs in a similar situation? Andy Hamilton

2:46pm Thu 16 Dec 10

Mr Anory. Jack says...

Andy, both you and I both know, a story is a story, if it jumps, then jump with it!
For years, the press at one time took delight at remarks made about my community, its residents, its hard working community leaders, groups and committees.
At last we have a "voice" one thats listened to, but still, the old tar brush keeps coming out.
If you, or Bob the gob (oops) and i do really admire his go gettem stance on things, want to stand up infront of the press and "shout", then we listen.
He just may be saying something worth listening too.
Such a shame he`s not a tory though!
Andy, both you and I both know, a story is a story, if it jumps, then jump with it! For years, the press at one time took delight at remarks made about my community, its residents, its hard working community leaders, groups and committees. At last we have a "voice" one thats listened to, but still, the old tar brush keeps coming out. If you, or Bob the gob (oops) and i do really admire his go gettem stance on things, want to stand up infront of the press and "shout", then we listen. He just may be saying something worth listening too. Such a shame he`s not a tory though! Mr Anory. Jack

12:16am Sun 19 Dec 10

snoswad says...

wedding what wedding?a circus you mean.
wedding what wedding?a circus you mean. snoswad

12:34am Thu 23 Dec 10

Wookie2010 says...

Well unlike most, I'm proud of an MP to stand up to what he believes, and what I believe will fix the country should the example be followed. Honestly, what a trivial letter. We are paying for the security, and yes it will bring plenty of money in via toursim and other such areas.
This country seems to thrive on moaning about this, that and the other. What happened to resilience, and dealing with things? Maybe if people spent more time working, and sorting things out than filling in forms, complaining and writing letters, we would get somewhere further and faster.
I hope if a complaint to the parliamentry standards commission was made, it is struck out instantly as being absurd. Everyone seems to be in it to tarnish someone else nowadays.
Stay true Bob, keep it up!
Well unlike most, I'm proud of an MP to stand up to what he believes, and what I believe will fix the country should the example be followed. Honestly, what a trivial letter. We are paying for the security, and yes it will bring plenty of money in via toursim and other such areas. This country seems to thrive on moaning about this, that and the other. What happened to resilience, and dealing with things? Maybe if people spent more time working, and sorting things out than filling in forms, complaining and writing letters, we would get somewhere further and faster. I hope if a complaint to the parliamentry standards commission was made, it is struck out instantly as being absurd. Everyone seems to be in it to tarnish someone else nowadays. Stay true Bob, keep it up! Wookie2010

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