Friday, 28 November 2014

You'd need a heart of stone ...

It continues to baffle me why otherwise sane, risk-averse persons should choose to gamble their entire wealth by going to law. It has long been established that the only winners from legal actions for libel or slander - defamation as it seems to be termed these days - are the lawyers. There must come some point at which vanity, hubris and the faint hope of victory overcome common sense - but beware it, for that is the point at which all your life's wealth is lost. 

In the construction business we've long learned not to have intractable disputes. Or if we insist on having them, to have recourse in the first instance to tribunal processes such as adjudication, faster and simpler than an action in the Construction Court. Relatively. £600 an hour is fairly cheap by city solicitor standards and even a simple adjudication can cost £30k.

I suppose politicians fall into the same category of fuddle-headed moron as pop stars and glamour models as far as defending their 'reputation' goes and so one need not over sympathise will any ill fortune in the law courts. In Andrew Mitchell's case, it would take a heart of stone not to chuckle.

12 comments:

DeeDee99 said...

Perhaps Mitchell will be a bit more polite to "the underlings" in future - particularly if they're in uniform.

Mellor would do well to improve his standards of behaviour as well.

What a credit they are to the Conservative Party (not).

Anonymous said...

If someone believes that they have a case for defamation they should surely be allowed to bring it. It seems to me that the cost of solicitors and counsel is what should be addressed (I have no idea how).
If it is too expensive to take someone to court that someone can say and print what they like with impunity. This cannot be right - unless the new Press Complaints body can sort it out.
Everyone should in theory be able to action libel.

right_writes said...

What I would like to know, is why "pleb" is such an emotive word. We know what these ex-public schoolboys do for fun... Taunting the oiks.

All of this legal action and utter waste of time... I suppose that it is worth reminding oneself that several police officers were fired, or jailed as a result of their actions, which reaffirms one's attitude to that august body.

Now, the way to handle something like this is...

Supposing your prime minister when asked what he thought about several million potential voters, gave his view that he thought that they were "...fruitcakes and loonies and closet racists mostly"

And we have been dining out on that ever since...

Priceless!

G. Tingey said...

And yet, for all of Mitchell's hubris ...
I still have the horrible suspicion that he has been neatly stitched-up, as effectively as anyone arrested by late & unlamented Sgt Challoner .....

Mike Spilligan said...

I'm sorry to repeat what others have said elsewhere, and on many occasions, but how do such people who put such a high value on their own "reputation", largely with evidence to the contrary, become our "leaders"?
What is just as disturbing is that Mitchell's colleagues - on both sides of the House - will carry on in the same way without any self-analysis. "It's not me - it's my Right Honourable friend's fault."

John M said...

Of course the irony is that Mitchell felt he had to defend his reputation at all.

It is indicative of how out of touch the UK political classes are that they believe anyone really cares about thier reputation. More to the point I would suggest that most people who know of him have pretty well formed opinions on Mr Fayed, which would render to purpose of going to court even more pointless.

Nine-Bob Note Copper said...

'In the construction business we have long learned not to have intractable disputes' Where the heck are you working? We do, and they got much worse with forms of contract other than the ICE conditions where the Engineer sorts it all out.

As to Mitchell, sure he's been stitched up. The 'force' is riddled with corruption and stitch-uppery, the judiciary are just as bad.

Raedwald said...

NBNC - Since the advent of the Construction Act in 1998, after the initial teething troubles when both the ICE and JCT failed to give up their vested interests, construction disputes have generally been streamlined and rapidly resolved. Sure, the really big ticket ones will always end up in court, but those contracts <£20m are not clogging up the courts these days.

And any senior figure in the industry will confirm how keen all parties are to reach a commercial settlement even before adjudication ...

Anonymous said...

Mitchellwas under attack from the "pleb" layer of the Police, whose Federation has more money than your average duke to pursue its vendettas.

In the circumstances, he may have felt he had no choice but to go to law about one little (true) word.

Budgie said...

Surely "prole" is more insulting than "pleb" because it was right at the bottom of the social scale. It is interesting to note that the proletarius class suffered economically when Rome increased the number of (immigrant) slaves who did the proles work for free (apart from purchase price and upkeep).

Cascadian said...

Complete lack of common sense, and inflated sense of importance.

Had he gone to a local primary school that would have been knocked out of him (by fellow pupils) by age eight.

Once again the posh boys show us how NOT to do it. The ruinous British legal system showcasing its Jarndyce v Jarndyce tendencies. And yet we are told to believe that the class system no longer exists.

What a sorry display.

Anonymous said...

The Lawyers won. Again.
Coney Island