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Friday, 7 June 2013

Luciana Berger - the nauseating face of the political class

Labour blow-in Luciana Berger has been in a spat with one of the local councillors in her Liverpool constituency ("They've found me a safe seat in Liverpool? Where's that? Wasn't that where the Beatles came from?") before she's even been able to remember the major street-names.

Berger of course is the poster-girl for the new breed of political class who are driving voters away from the Labour and Tory parties in droves. Like most of her contemporaries, she was privately educated (Haberdasher Aske's) and from a Labour political dynasty. And no, she's never had a proper job or done a single day's proper work in her life. It was student politics, then a bit of expenses-experience with a health quango before Parliament.

She was screwed into one of  Labour's safe Liverpool seats for the 2010 election by the party's London HQ against local opposition. As Wiki records "In the run-up to the General Election, the Liverpool Echo tested Berger with a four-question quiz on Liverpool life and history. She scored two out of four, not knowing who performed Ferry Cross the Mersey and not recognising the name of former Liverpool F.C. manager, Bill Shankly."

It's Berger and her like that that are worth 10,000 votes each to UKIP and the alternative parties; the sickening and nauseating 'jobs for the boys and girls' nepotism by the dying private clubs of the main parties being truly out of favour with voters.

PRISM story tops the day

The story shared by the Washington Post and the Guardian of how the US security services enjoy unhindered access to the internet activity of the customers of the world's largest internet corporations should surprise no one. If you weren't already aware that every single word you type on that keyboard is known to some security official somewhere you should be. US security officials have responded by calling the reports 'irresponsible' - not untrue, note - and claiming that the US's security has been damaged by disclosure that the government is snooping on everyone's email. 

It's not just the septics, of course. Our own MPs, both Tory and Labour, are pushing for even greater access to our private information under a new 'snooper's charter' but at the same time seeking to restrict radically our access to information on their own pay and expenses, and our ability (through Leveson) to share information on their badger-watching activities or to share photographs they have posted of themselves in their underwear or dressed in rubber or leather harness.

And at a time when we've lost not only Tom Sharpe but Oliver Bernard, the last and most human of the three brothers. I remember too fondly an afternoon session in the French back in the 90s with Dan Farson, Sandy Fawkes and both Bruce and Oliver - in reality the invective was poison - all of whom are now dead. I mention this only because they shared a common loathing and mistrust for anyone who presumed to know better than they what was good for them - including the presumptive and impertinent interference by the government in our private affairs. Still, the revelation that it is the US that is the world's first Police State fills me with hope; if there's a people anywhere in the world who will not stand for this, it's the Americans.  

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Osborne a Moron - official

Whilst I'm waiting for the boy's latest genius wheeze to add a further 20% to the value of my home here in London, there's equal satisfaction to be had from the comments of Soc Gen's Albert Edwards;
"I don’t think Andrew Bridgen at Fathom Consulting was strong enough when he described George Osborne’s scheme as “reckless”. I believe it truly is a moronic policy that stands head and shoulders above most of the stupid economic policies I have seen implemented during my 30 years in this business. It ranks above some of Alan Greenspan’s very worst blunders. And when so many highly regarded commentators speak out against it, only to be totally ignored by George ‘I know better’ Osborne, he may really deserve to be called a moron."

So what do they think the EU is?

It's always good to see the beaker people over at the Grauniad running about like puppies every time they discover fire. Today it's Seumas Milne who is granted the rare flashes of insight;
But the real corruption that has eaten into the heart of British public life is the tightening corporate grip on government and public institutions – not just by lobbyists, but by the politicians, civil servants, bankers and corporate advisers who increasingly swap jobs, favours and insider information, and inevitably come to see their interests as mutual and interchangeable. The doors are no longer just revolving but spinning, and the people charged with protecting the public interest are bought and sold with barely a fig leaf of regulation.

 It defies rationality to believe that the prospect of far better paid jobs in the private sector doesn't influence the decisions of ministers and officials – or isn't used by corporations to shape policy. Who can seriously doubt that politicians were encouraged to champion light touch regulation before the crash by the lure and lobbying of the banks, as well as by an overweening ideology?

Britain is now an increasingly corrupt country at its highest levels – not in the sense of directly bribing officials, of course, and it's almost entirely legal. But our public life and democracy is now profoundly compromised by its colonisation. Corporate and financial power have merged into the state.
And what of the European Commission and the European Parliament, where the merger has not only gone further but is increasingly more explicit? A Europe run for the huge corporations by the huge corporations, with national governments bought and sold and free market competition crushed?

Hey ho. Maybe they'll discover a use for the wheel next week.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Just more bent politicians

Did anyone really imagine that after the mass-culling of bent MPs from the Rotten Parliament that Westminster would transform into an exemplar of probity? No, of course not. The game has changed - and not getting caught is now the name of the game. To make things fair, and to balance the list of Lobbyists, Levenson will no doubt now back an official register of undercover journalists, fake sheiks and investigative reporters and make it an offence to gull an MP. 

And no one really imagines that if UKIP were at Westminster things would be much different. Already somewhere I'm sure a newly-elected UKIP Councillor is pocketing a fat brown envelope in return for believing that what his ward really needs are a few more bloody windmills built by Romanians. 

And still there are out there strident voices urging us all to support them all the same; a bit like salesmen convincing us that blue asbestos is just the stuff from which to make children's play equipment. Oh yes, they aver, Labour and Tory sleaze, corruption and fraud is completely different. Labour mostly go for money, while for the Tories it's deviant sex. Or maybe LibDems. Just shuffle back into line you lot and support detached millionaire confection Dave for top fruitcake. 

It's gone way past that of course. We'll all vote UKIP in 2014 to deliver such a kicking to Dave's curly icing that will be felt right through to his Angelica bits. And that's about as adult and responsible as it gets.