Fraud is conducted by men with no convictions, and ignored by those of no conviction.

The Slog meets an unlikely hero on Twitter

Fraud is a human phenomenon worsened by an ‘anything goes’ culture. For years, MPs charged everything from duck houses to lavatory seats to the taxpayer, and paid their family salaries out of the public purse. The same practice has been going on in Greece for generations, and still does. But this being Greece, there is fraud after death: senior ministers are, on retirement, allowed to hire up to six people and charge it all to the citzenry. All those memoirs, you see…somebody has to check and make sure the lies, alleged conversations and dodgy dates make sense.

But the elite’s determination not to prosecute its wrongdoing is hard-wired into the species more firmly than the original fraud motivation requiring a cover-up in the first place. 12,000 Whitehall mandarins awarded themselves obscene pension increase between seven and four years ago. I’ve posted about this dozens of times: it’s an open and shut case, but there has not even been an accusation from officialdom, let alone a collar felt or a trial held. Here we  are, years into the Hackgate scandal, and so far two people have been charged with conspiracy. The cases have yet to come to trial, and nobody at all in the real Establishment has suffered more than being gummed to sleep by half-briefed and/or showboating idiots like Louise Mensch, may she now at last disappear forever.

From the US, we learn this morning that Goldman Sachs – thought by just the one mental patient in Kuala Lumpar to be possibly innocent of all charges relating to the 2008-9 crash – will not face any prosecutions of anyone at all. A Senate subcommittee chaired by Senator Carl Levin found in Spring 2011 that Goldman marketed four sets of complex mortgage securities to banks and other investors, failed to tell clients that the securities were very risky, and then secretly bet against the investors’ positions – thus deceiving the investors about its own positions to shift risk from its balance sheet to theirs.

Last night the Justice Department said the “burden of proof” had proved too heavy a weight for them to carry. So that’s that. Earlier in the day, the Securities and Exchange Commission decided not to file charges against the firm over a $1.3bn subprime mortgage portfolio. I (like many others) have looked at the detail of this case. Tony Blair was (I know first hand) the most incompetent prosecuting counsel in British legal history, but he could’ve got the verdict on this one just by turning up.

From Britain and America, we turn to what is allegedly an entirely different culture, Greece. A regular source of Athenian grime wrote to me last night to explain why – although 13 senior civil servants with a combined $30.7 million in undeclared bank deposits are being investigated about tax evasion – they’ve been fingered before and escaped scot-free. So nobody really expects them to go down this time. They include:

A female court official with $9.8 million in unexplained deposits.
A retired Ministry clerk with $10.9 million in the bank
A customs officer illegally possessing $1.13 million
An Urban Planning Agency clerk with $1.9 million
Two former Urban Planning Agency workers with $750,000 each
An Urban Planning Agency supervisor illegally possessing $435,000
An Urban Planning Agency clerk with $75,000
A former Forest Inspector with $5.05 million of which $1.24 million
was said to be illegal
A Former Forestry supervisor with $108,000
A Greek Manpower Employment Organization (OAED) clerk with $830,000
A supervisor of the Association of Municipalities and Communities
with $622,000
Former head technician possessing $737,000.

You’d think that this one would be a doddle for Tony Blair’s cat, but apparently not.

Why am I wittering on about this today? Last night I met (on Twitter) a young man of the Left(ish I think) persuasion called Scott Duffy. He said all Tories hate equality, and I asked him to define equality. We had a spirited exchange, and then I gently suggested he was being a bit ageist towards me. His reply was: “You are right I was being very presumptuous and rude… I will read your blogs…”

There are other clear signs that Scott is a good egg. First off, he’s a mental health worker, without whom my Dad would’ve been face-down in a gutter somewhere years ago. But even more telling, he describes himself at his Home @ScottDuffy as having “an irrational hatred of CJ from the Eggheads”. His only error here is to describe the emotion as irrational: CJ is an appallingly dismissive prat, and represents one of the very few sound arguments in favour of capital punishment.

So I hope he’s reading this. Scot I mean, not CJ. No, cancel that: I hope CJ is reading this, the bloody pillock. Because yes, Scott is right, the rich exploit the poor (that’s how they get rich) but if the system works properly, they also employ the poor to more productive usefulness than State-run economies. However, without equality before the law, there can be no fairness, no progress, no decency and – in total – no civilisation.

In a civilised society, for example, clots like Boris Johnson would not be considered for positions of power. He is a friend of criminals, a foul-mouthed bully-boy, a detester of the public, a dissembler of facts, a dictator pretending to be a clown, and an idiot who calls a principled New York regulator a favouritist “jealous of London’s success as a banking regulator”. This from the man who thinks it OK to spend Locog money entertaining Rupert Murdoch at the Olympic Games. This from the man who has always sided with the Lord Greens and the Newscorps, the Bob Diamonds and the Fred Goodwins, the Darius Guppies and – now – Peter Sands who, while he seems guility of very little, really does not deserve to be thought a victim. He is the victim of a principled lawyer, Ben Lawsky, who got tired of cosy deals between crooks in US banking and crooks at the Fed.

In a civilised society, there would be no room along the corridors of power for Harriet Harman, who wants privileged status for her gender based on perhaps the most ignorant and outdated theory of behaviourist nonsense on the planet. In her pursuit of this, she has encouraged Secret Courts, unwittingly enabled paedophiles to target victims, and replaced equality of opportunity with the cancerous favouritism of  ‘affirmative action’ – aka, promoting the mediocre.

Both people were plunged into the spotlight four years ago by The Slog as the two most dangerous people in Britain – because they share a liking for favouritism, the promotion of their tribe; because they then pervert the law to bring that to life; and because they excuse the inanities of their position with potty arguments like “We must show the world that Britain is open for business”. Behind Jack Dromey are the undemocratic legions of Unite. Behind Boris are George Osborne (who this morning joined in the anti-Lawsky chorus) and media proprietors, none of whom either live in or pay taxes to this country. I would love to say a lot more about the relationship, but the lawyers say I mustn’t. Not yet.

Harman is the power (along with hubby Jack) behind Ed Miliband. When Camerlot collapses, there is a good chance Boris will step into the vacuum. The bad guys are winning. This is not good.

Now that, Scott, is what I call real inequality – the law as protector of privilege, rather than blind prosecutor of wrongdoing. Anyway, good on yer mate – we may never agree on much, but at least you’re tolerant, do a vital job, and have nice manners. And you hate CJ.

79 thoughts on “Fraud is conducted by men with no convictions, and ignored by those of no conviction.

  1. “the law as protector of privilege” It was always thus. First the law protected the King, then the barons; then the land owners, then the establishment. Think back to when you were a boy and a working class claimant had no chance against a business or a respectable gentleman. Things are better now but money will always talk. Today councils fail to take big businesses to court because they cannot afford the risk of costs if they lose. The sheer cost & complexity of the law, particularly in the US, makes any action extremely risky and the authorities increasingly avoid that risk. The big exception being criminal cases where you have to be very rich or plead guilty.

    • But it does not need to be this way. Law is about right and wrong. the Rule of Law is about those in power ensuring that the law is even handed and easily applicable based on right and wrong.
      I am glad to see that I am not the only person who thinks Boris would make yet another intolerable unprincipled and (morally) ignorant leader for this country. As for Hattie – I could, I am pretty certain, find yet another good use for a cheese grater given lawful authority and close contact :)

  2. A very senior law lord once told me ‘the law is not for people like you, it is for the corporations with departments full of lawyers’. He was furious at that fact, but it was the fact. Norris McWhirter used to say that ‘the law is just like the Ritz, open to all’.

    • So, of course, he set out to try to do something about it?

      No? Well, quelle surprise, he just kept quiet and kept taking the money, didn’t he? Judges are just bureaucrats like any other-why they are accorded such esteem has always defeated me.

  3. Interesting! Not the figures, surely everyone knows that southern Europe is a cesspit of corruption and bribery, with officials at all levels taking what they can in the most expert ways. This also applies to Spain and Portugal to my certain knowledge. No, its the use of the $ in your figures. Has Greece already been taken over by the Yanks? Or do they really still use the Euro?

  4. There is only one way to make all equal, and that is by force. Is that what Scott Duffy wants? That equality is of course, to achieve for all the lowest common denominator. Oh – I should mention of course, that even in this Dystopia that Mr. Duffy so desires is not really “equal” – the ruling classes are of course, being more equal than others, from all of this.

    “Equal” is for the terminally stupid, and should not be confused with equality of opportunity. Should it, Scott?

    • Look everyone, can we just calm down please? I’m not saying I want to have the bloke’s f**king babies, just that his heart seems to be in the right place.
      I am getting sick to death in recent comment threads of the classic trash-everyone-different-to-me shit. Clearly you’re right and cleary they’re right so we’re all right but still no further on. OK? Thanks.

      • I think where the problem lies is in the failure to recognise the fundamental difference between ‘equality’ and ‘equal opportunity’. If we had equal opportunity for all (and rule of law, applying equally to everyone, in order to make it stick) there’d still be rich and poor, powerful and subservient, connected and socially isolated… the difference would be that some,maybe most, of those in positions of authority / power / influence would have got there by dint of their native intelligence, talents and a hefty dose of bloody hard graft.

        That would give you a fighting chance of having some of your ‘overlords’ gifted with empathy, a sense of fair play, a charitable nature… y’know, those attributes that we all (used to,anyway) think of as exemplifying the best parts of collective British nature. Which has to be at least a modest improvement on the current ‘biggest bas**rd gets the job’, ‘climb the ladder by stepping on the fingers of the guy a rung below’ path to success.

        As long as we continue to let rent-seeking sociopaths game the system for their own advancement and enrichment, all we’re going to get is more of the same – except the money/power/influence syphon has to be shoved ever deeper into the social fuel tank to keep the black engines of privilege running. We’re now halfway across Death Valley with ‘E’ showing on the gauge, half a tube of Pringles and a warm, flat bottle of Tango. And there’s a worrying noise from the engine!

  5. Fraud is conducted by men with no convictions, and ignored by those of no conviction.

    So trolling and the misuse of someone’s gravatar is not fraud, then? Or is it just a little fun? To me it comes close enough to fraud.

    JW: you have already been presented with sufficient evidence to ban my Troll (just block their IP address – just ask BT if you don’t know how to do this).

    No doubt my Troll will turn up on this page too, just to prove the point!

    • @Gemz
      We all know when it’s you, and we all know when it’s the Troll.
      I certainly read and learn from your inputs to the blog, and ignore the Troll,s for they have nothing intelligent or useful to say. Yes – and they probably will turn up on this page now.

      • Gerry

        thankyou for that. To be quite honest with you, it is why I make comments – that is to say, to learn from others, Ioannis is one in particular that I value.

        However, it does not detract from the fact that using someone’s gravatar with the intent of impersonation is fraud.

        The other side of this is that many commenters are unhappy that this site – that claims to be anti-fraud, anti-corruption – allows it full vent!!

        This is now a matter for JW to handle: he has been supplied with the evidence by me, and has chosen to ignore it. For JW to simply state “Let us have no more of this” or “Stop this now” does not work with Trolls. Nor does my ignoring them. So I lampoon them instead and have some fun in the mean time. If JW wants his comment sections filled with Trolling and lose readership thereby, that is for him to deal with. I refer you to the headline of this piece.

        If he chooses to block me, that again is his choice, it is his blog. I will be the poorer thereby.

      • @Gemz
        However, it does not detract from the fact that using someone’s gravatar with the intent of impersonation is fraud.
        Really? I would say that it’s in the same league as the assumption that putting a towel on a sunlounger is postive proof of ownership. i.e tosh.

      • @Jon

        tosh or not, it is how I feel about it. That Germans make an assumption about towels and loungers that is not shared by the Brits does not make either of them right!

        However, impersonation is fraud, even if it is done for good reason: getting rid of pesky females!

        However, there is such a thing as integrity. JW has made his statements, and has yet to act on them.

    • Gemz
      This is my site and I will run it as to my rules. I’m not interested in this topic any more and I doubt if anyone else is.

      • Well, that is the reply I expected.

        I am quite sure that you are not interested in the topic, but everyone else is fed up of my Troll too. Never mind: it’s your party.

    • You are comparing fraud with mocking. Nothing like the same offence.
      You should give it a rest with the constant whining and blog domination. FWIW, I think you do ask for it.

      • Super S

        Impersonation is fraud. That is law. Using my gravatar without permission is fraud. Mockery it may be in your eyes, but you do not see with mine.

        If JW is happy to have Trolls on his site, that is for him to decide now. I have said my piece, and he has given his response. In short, things will continue as they have up until now. If you don’t like that, well of course you can read other blogs, or just avoid my comments.

  6. This is a weird thing. I have been trying to get to the bottom of that dodgy solicitor my son was forced to have by the secret family court for 18 months and yet never be allowed ever to meet. He is a member of something called Resolution. So I looked it us, and found out that there are several organisations called Resolution, but all seem to be linked together. One is a charity called Resolution Foundation, charity number 1114839 the address is 23 Saville Row London W1S 2ET, and the other I looked at is Resolution Group and their address is also 23 Saville Row London W1S 2ET, and thats funny because one is a charity and the other is a Financial advisory firm, and the Resolution that the dodgy secret court solicitor belongs to is to do with the family courts. The other weird thing about 23 Saville Row London W1S 2ET is that it is also the address of York Capital Management, and they are part owned by Credit Suisse, Och Ziff and Marathon Asset Management and they are the ones involved in the Greek dept crisis.
    http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=4&ved=0CFIQFjAD&url=http%3A%2F%2Fofficenewsonline.wordpress.com%2F2011%2F05%2F23%2Fyork-capital-management-relocates-to-savile-row%2F&ei=PeckUOXBKJCyhAfhz4HYAw&usg=AFQjCNF3VZEedshNFZvsmz5vfiUetCjWRw&sig2=aoH_oYCkEtzTyMvlaZRPwg
    I just wondered why they relocated to this particular address.

    • @zoompad.It might be Clive Cowdery’s Resolution charity,set up after he made a fortune in zombie life funds,and the London office of his new vehicle,London listed but a Channei Island company.

      • And then taken over by Hugh Osmond. who pulled out of the Lloyds bid last October. Thanks William. Like I said, one horrible big fat moneygrovelling scam, and they dress it all up as blinking charity.

  7. I think it has been mentioned before that Mad Hattie HarmThem was linked to the Peadeophile Information Exchange back in the 1960’s. “Adult sex with children is part of the rainbow of experiences children go through” or some comment to that effect.
    Often wondered why nothing is ever mentioned about this, particularly when her hubby was found to be using public money ti hire ham shank vids from Sky. Wonder what vids they were?

      • OAH
        No chum, he isn’t actually: that was a Hattiquote. It was Jackie’s hubby that liked porn.
        HH is a decidedly odd person, as is her husband. I’d prefer it if we drew a discreet veil over this area: it’s really not worth getting banned again about – I have bigger fish to fry.
        Thanks.

  8. Having spent the best part of a year fighting a bank in the UK, unrepresented as they had stolen all my money and civil legal aid is hardly available I know very well that there is no legal remedy for ordinairy people againsts the banks. My case culminated in a four day hearing during which, under cross examination, those representing the bank admitted over and over that they had been economical with the truth. The judge congratulated me on my evidence and presentation of my case but in summary said that to find in my favour would mean that he acknowledged that my bank had lied which he could not contemplate. He said simply that ‘bankers do not lie’.

      • Liz

        if he makes you sad, think what it is in him that wants to make people like you sad. Finding that out, you would pity him, believe me. In the mean time, we suffer. The likes of him have driven our countries into the ground.

    • Yes, that’s pretty much what the secret family court judge told me about Cafcass officers, apparently all Cafcass officers are whiter than the driven snow, and they never commit perjury and they never tell lies.

      • Gerry!

        the problem is that people like him are shameless. They think only of the money, not where it comes from or the problems it gives other people. In short, they are sh**ts.

      • He is quite senior but if I do not suceed with the ombudsman I will do. However, I have very low expectations of getting any sort of justice !

      • BT

        your circular logic says it all: to be booted out of the establishment means they have done something that the establishment does not like. Usually they do that to people who are not in the establishment, and have the establishment to back them up.

        As to the corruptness in the UK government, I do wonder if it is not just them taking the only actions they can think of purely out of fear of doing anything else? I doubt it is anything so high-minded as out and out socialism! We are talking incompetents!

    • Liz, don’t give up I fought Lloyds for three years and went to the Financial Ombudsman and I won, they are pretty good actually though it takes time.

  9. I have to say that I have been stunned at the wave of anti-Americanism unleashed by the Standard Chartered scandal.

    But then, silly me, that’s the way it’s been for years in the UK. Look where the fashion for supporting Islamists has led: Syria on the verge of being run by al-Qaeda.

    And how dare George Osborne stick his head in and start defending that bank.

    The plain fact is the Americans have always been serious about white collar crime when they think they can catch the culprits.

    Their justice system is not perfect, by any means, but the City of London is virtually lawless compared with the US. A few tiddlers are prosecuted once in a while in the UK, but London is the place to come if you really want to get spivvy.

    Why didn’t MF Global do what they did in the US?

    The Smelly Telegraph has been pining ‘innocent until proven guilty’.

    But the bank admits its guilty on $14 million of transactions. Is that just the transactions they hadn’t covered up properly?

    They’ve admitted they’ve done wrong.

    It reminds me of the final scene in Unforgiven. George Osborne as Gene Hackman in the bar, laughing it up with all the local crooks.

    In comes Benjamin ‘Clint’ Lawsky: ‘You, Fat Man.’

    And with a squeeze of the trigger, Fat Man Standard Chartered is opened up like a bag of crisps.

    The Telegraph whines that the greedy pigs at Standard Chartered weren’t expecting this.

    Neither was the Fat Man.

    After what these bankers have got away with in the UK, what a tonic it is to see the US cavalry turn up out of nowhere and put the fear in them. That’s the best hope anyone in the UK done over by a UK bank can hope for.

    The bankers and legal system are ‘all in it together’ in the UK.

    The Americans have an agenda, says Labour John Mann MP. And you don’t have an agenda, Johnbo?

    Your Labour mates worked for that bank. And you Labour backbenchers aren’t known for your love of America.

    You wouldn’t get a kick out of its links to China and Iran, would you?

    I’ve long had the impression that the Left has long been getting off on using the banks to socially engineer (the tax base was, it used to be said in the business pages, meant to fund Gordon Brown’s welfare clientele). They wouldn’t try to cause worse mischief?

    Don’t stop at Fat Man Standard Chartered, Mr Lawsky.

    If you catch them on the spiv, give the every wretched one of them both barrels.

    • Give ‘em hell, Harry!
      Sorry OAH, but I agree 100% with every word: the Brits are making complete twats of themselves about this.
      The question to ask is WHY Lawsky jumped the gun, to which there are two equally applicable answers: 1. He’s a careerist. 2. He is genuinely pissed off with the utterly corrupt little tax/fine coverup going on inside the Fed. Good for him.
      All that said Harry, I hope you realise that this ‘special relationship’ bollocks is derided by almost everyone over here. It’s time people stopped drivelling on about it: it’s a myth.
      Bostonian to me in 1984: “If it weren’t for us, you’d be speaking German”.
      My riposte: “If we hadn’t held out against the Germans, you’d be struggling with l’s and r’s”.
      It was all a long time ago. Let’s move on to good old protectionism: it’s far more honest…and not insane like Globalism is.

      • Sorry JW but the American (in)justice system is the ultimate corruption and the anti British banking moves are all about power and money and nothing to do with justice. The system sucks totally and irreversibly.

    • @Harry
      Are you a mushroom ?
      Get into the light and stop eating the bullshit.
      American Govt serious about white collar crime ?
      HAHAHAHAHA

  10. @OAH & BT – Sorry, no POST button to reply to your commentS above.

    http://chris-ukorg.org/paedophile-party-members/p-i-e/

    Before she became an MP, Harriet Harman (pic above) was the legal officer in the late 1970s for the National Council for Civil Liberties. When Miss Harman joined NCCL in 1978, PIE, the Paedophile Information Exchange, had already been affiliated for three years. Another group, Paedophile Action for Liberation, a Gay Liberation Front offshoot, had also been affiliated to NCCL until it was absorbed by PIE. PIE, which campaigned for adults to have sex legally with children, only broke off its relationship with NCCL when it went undercover in 1982, the same year that Harriet Harman left her NCCL post to become Member of Parliament for Peckham.

    So when the Protection of Children Bill was put before Parliament in order to tighten the laws on child pornography by banning indecent images of under-16s Harriett Harman was at the forefront of the NCCL response. Signed by Harriett Harman in April 1978, the NCCL’s formal response to the Government proposals to reform sex laws dubbed a “Lolita’s Charter” was unbelievable.

    Harman argued that, “…childhood sexual experiences, willingly engaged in, with an adult result in no identifiable damage…Although this harm may be of a somewhat speculative nature, where participation falls short of physical assault, it is none-the-less justifiable to restrain activities by photographer which involve placing children under the age of 14 (or, arguably, 16) in sexual situations. We suggest that the term ‘indecent’ be qualified as follows: – A photograph or film shall not for this purpose be considered indecent (a) by reason only that the model is in a state of undress (whether complete or partial); (b) unless it is proved or is to be inferred from the photograph or film that the making of the photograph or film might reasonably be expected to have caused the model physical harm or pronounced psychological or emotional disorder.”

    NCCL people were earlier involved in keeping the name of an NCCL council-member, Jonathan Walters, out of the People newspaper when it ran an exposé of Paedophile Action for Liberation, of which he was secretary, in 1975. The People still ran the story, but Walters was not named. Even more extraordinary is the fact that a current Cabinet Minister was running the National Council of Civil Liberties at the time all this was going on.

    Jack Dromey, (pic above) whom Harriet Harman married in 1982, and who was Treasurer of the Labour Party, was also involved with the NCCL. He served on its Executive Committee from 1970 to 1979, so he was there when the decision to invite the two paedophile groups to affiliate was made.

  11. US Dept of Justice are anything but incompetent; their office junior could have easily got the Squid to plea-bargain a no-contest / no guilt settlement.
    They have been told what side their bread is buttered. The only banks they will ever go after are foreign (like StanChart, HSBC), or out-of-towners.

  12. O/T.Facecrook listed at $38, rose to $42 ,NOW $21. ManU listed at $14,now $ 14.05,three months from here $7?5 years on ,will they still be in the Premiership?

  13. Well bugger me. I had to take a break from the sport as I needed some food. I’m disturbed to discover there are some current events still happening, I thought it was just the running and jumping festival in East London we concerned oursleves with theses days. Team GB is covered in golden stuff you know. Some bloke from Rhodesia thought we called it Zimbabwe won the 800 metres in quick fast time and the chap in the 200 metres running race was struck by lighting. I hear also somebody found a flat silver coloured cylindrical object at the bottom of an old drawer, blew some dust off it only to discover that i was a CD of the Australian National Anthem.

    My point though, if I have one at all, is that isnt ones attitude to fraud simply one of degrees? I’d wager we would all be happy to committ a little fraud and frankly who hasn’t, if we thought we had no chance of getting caught. If you were told you could avoid paying large sums of money because some clever clogs showed you how without getting caught, would you insist on paying your share? Or would you look out for yourself?

    The old story of the chap asking the pretty girl if she would sleep with him for £1million which she accepts and he says how about £2.50 and she says, what do you think I am? He replies we have already established that, now we are just haggling over the price. We are all motivated by what will make our lives better, some have a lower price and moral theshold. I’d sell my mother in law into slavery for £1million. Any takers?

    Fraud is sadly part of what makes the big wheels turn, Fraud is a just another term for telling lies. Are we at a place that we know these people are lying to us but there arent enough clever decent people with any power to do anything about it because the liars are also rich enough to stretch the moral thresholds of those who might challenge them. At least we can take some comfort that Rupert Murdoch has no influence whatsover over the Olympic games because if he had the Aussies might have been less dismal by their standards. Now, where is my remote control for the telebox, as you were. Oh, and over at mine the last post was quite good. About me on a mountain. Come on the Kiwi’s!

    • ‘I’d sell my mother in law into slavery for £1million. Any takers?’
      Not a chance Sandy. There are too many who would giive theirs into slavery.

  14. I love this rant, even though I’m not familiar with the players I can insert my own.

    As for CJ (a new one for me),I see on his Wiki page he has a rant about the chess federation in which he states “You wouldn’t believe the blatant breaking of rules and FIDE’s written statutes. It’s amazing”.

    Ah yes, the universal rage at injustice I feel it too, however what really gets me going is my belief that the crooks are smiling all the way to the bank. I’m sure they would be totally amused by my anger, if they happened to noticed it.

  15. “The same practice has been going on in Greece for generations, and still does.”
    What you get in the big news about corrupt greek officials is just the tip of the iceberg. The terrifying thing for me is that the people dont really react to all this anymore . It doen’t shock them anymore . Nothing shocks them anymore . Is like watching the weather report in UK and hearing if it is going to drizzle,shower,rain,pour,downpour or bucket down .Scandals ,frauds,corruption or theft dont shock anyone .Around 130BC there was a king in Pontus and Armenia minor , king Mithridates ,who was afraid that he will be poisoned and used to take small amounts of various poisons regularly to the extent that no poison, arsenic,strychnine or venom could kill him .Greece suffers from a form of Mithridatism.I sure hope that others are not catching up to this practice or vaccination or “anything goes” .

    • Yana: “The terrifying thing for me is that the people dont really react to all this anymore . It doen’t shock them anymore . Nothing shocks them anymore ”

      The same situation arose here in Ireland this past few years, people became de-sensitised to financial scandal, which perversely allowed some really destructive, incompetent high ranking types off the hook with massive retirement pay-offs and pensions.

  16. The rich always exploit the poor? John you stated before yourself that you are part of the richest ten percent in this country. Are you exploiting the other 90%? I don’t think you do (as far as I know). I have no idea where I stand in the scale and don’t really care either, but I do know that there are plenty out there poorer than me. I am not exploiting them, in many cases I’m paying for them. So do you. Exploitation does lead to massive gaps between the rich and the rest and obviously there are plenty of examples. But you do not HAVE to be exploitative to generate wealth.
    Also I don’t trust Boris for my own irrational reasons, he is the son of an MEP and went to a Brussels European school which indoctrinates kids into the E.U. scheme so I find him hard to believe.
    However the slog consistently calls him one of our most dangerous politicians in Britain, I asked about this once, and then again a second time I probably cheekily inferred that you may have an issue with him due to his upbringing. I think this may be the case but I also half hoped you would come back with some good solid stuff on why he was worse than Cameron, Clarke, Hunt, Balls, Cooper, etc, etc you know how long the list is. They all seem far worse to me.
    You haven’t done it really. Surely with the language you use on him you must have enough to do a piece on him similar Merkel or Hunt let us know why he is so much worse than the other cretins (apparently)

  17. Well Sandy- don’t be too quick! The Aussies are catching up. C’Mon Aussie!!! The other thing I wanted to say- yes CJ on Eggheads is a total dingo. I like to come home from work, settle back with a Sav Blanc or two (yes Sandy fom NZ) and every night that w*anker is on the tele rolling his eyes and pouting his face at me pretending he knows stuff. I’m a teacher so it is like being at work, with the dumb kid up the back rolling his eyes and pretending he knows when he hasn’t got a bl**dy clue.
    Sandy, I have to drink NZ Sav Blanc- it’s a responsibility. You poor Kiwi’s have had it tough for a while- mine disasters, earthquake, aftershocks. A girl has to do what she can and I have two grandchildren who are half kiwi as their mother fled ‘the land of the long flat vowel’ and came somewhere a bit warmer.
    Aussie Aussie Aussie oi oi oi. Dont write us off too soon.

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  19. Agreed BT…..my cockerel will pretend to find food and make loads of noise so that the girls come running. Then he pounces on one, to have his wicked way – he’d make a good socialist leader!

  20. BT
    You’re wrong, sorry. It is wired into the species and has knoball to do with Marx, OK?
    Old Russian gag: “With capitalism, man exploits man; but with Communism, it’s the other way round”.

  21. Can you say that with a straight face? Of course the rich exploit the poor.
    I don’t doubt that those who would call themselves socialists are as bad as the most avaricious right wingers but exploit they most certainly do.

    What was that Wonga loan shark Tory donor chap doing when he wrote his opinion piece about economic recovery depending on things like employers being able to sack on a whim and relaxing child labour laws?

    What was labour doing when it introduced tax credits? subsidising massively profitable big businesses so they didn’t have to pay a living wage with an employe top up that has been removed under the Tories because the banks are swallowing up all the money.

    What was labour doing when it let all those immigrants in? Itching to give away taxpayers’ money to people who don’t or can’t vote? Or driving wage rates into the ground at the behest of business?

    What’s Rupert Murdoch doing when he fills his hate rags with apocryphal stories about benefit fraud? It is propaganda aimed at turning public opinion against the most vulnerable in society, so the richest can get away without paying tax.

    What’s the Republican Tea Party all about if it isn’t exploiting the stupidity of the working and middle class right wing voter and bamboozling them into voting against their own interests?

    I am neither rich nor poor, Labour nor Tory, but I see the disabled more villified than corrupt bankers and I think the undeserving rich maybe have a reckoning coming their way. Unbalanced systems have a habit of correcting themselves.

  22. BT: “There is zero truth in the assertion that “the rich exploit the poor”

    Spend a year working in Tesco and come back and say that to me with a straight face.

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