Monday, January 26, 2009

Wait for the whitewash and the spin

I don't know, I turn off my laptop and refuse to watch or follow the news for the weekend and what happens? Corruption scandals that's what. The news that Labour peers are accused of offering their services to amend laws in retrun for fees is not really that surprising. The surprising thing is that at last someone has, at least if the allegations are true, been caught out doing it.

Nor was I surprised to hear the Labour leader in the Lords was planning her own inquiry and then swiftly said that the peers in question had been "entrapped". We can all guess what that inquiry is going to conclude then. Don't be surprised either if we start to hear snippet of positive stories from the Treasury about plans for tax cuts or the raising of tax threshold in the Budget.

The bottom line is that Downing Street will want to bury this story as quickly and as swiftly as possible, and if that means creating a few stories to knock it down the agenda then they'll do it.


Bryan Dunleavy said...

My own thoughts exactly. Cynicism reigns!

Houdini said...

Cameron needs to keep this on the front page, but will he?

This is far worse than cash for questions, which could be argued was not illegal; this is changing laws made by elected MPs. and the sums are far more.

The BBC has largely been quiet, as has the media, far quieter I suspect than if this had involved a Limp Dum or Tory. This is part of the drip drip effect that killed the previous Tory Government and will stick as a throw away comment.


Robert said...

I just listened to brown on TV , the bloke is a bumbling moron, he has nothing to offer but more of the same, and of course he was warning us of this banking crises ten years ago, seems odd ten years ago he was pushing for the banks to go for it.

Boy it was not me sir it was them.

Conand said...

Why are there going to be three different enquiries? 2 Parliamentary and 1 Police.
It all seems to be about muddying the waters.
As far as is possible the BBC say 'Four Peers' not 'Four LABOUR Peers', I haven't heard anyone on the BBC News channel point out that Peers of at least three other parties (Con, LD, UUP) told the so called 'lobbyists' to bog off.
This is worse than cash 4 questions and cash 4 honours.
They were caught red handed offering to change legislation for huge ammounts of cash. It really doesn't get any worse.

Thats News said...

They should encode this practice in law. And have a taxi rank system, where each member of the Lords is allowed to take a bribe -sorry!- I mean take outside consultancy work in turn.

Fidothedog said...

Libel case losing MP Paul Flynn has already start calming the valleys down.

But as a proven liar who's word was destroyed in a libel action we can dismiss all he says.

Anonymous said...

This is actually a problem than inflicts all parties - if you look at the Register of Members of Interests for both the Lords and the Commons you will see that politicians of all colours are taking retainers from commercial bodies. Why do these commercial bodies pay retainers if it is not to influence policy or to have their voice heard in Parliment - I very much doubt it is because the recipients undertake other activities on behalf of those entities. There may be different stories from the politicians about what they offer in return or can offer in return (and I'm sure that those who play the system best have the correct form of words so that they are not breaking any rules) but to anyone but a complete idiot it is pretty obvious. There are really two alternatives allow politicians to have such paid relationships (and let it all be in the open) or not allow them at all - it is difficult to see how there any honest alternatives.

And before Lord Oakshott gets on his customary high horse - perhaps he might wish to explain how he avoids conflicts of interest between his political role and as joint MD of an investment management company.

Houdini said...

This is actually a problem than inflicts all parties...blah blah, suck lick suck, blah blah...

Of course it is...and these four Labour peers were only moonlighting as Labour peers and were really from other parties.