Thursday, 4 August 2011
Politicians For Sale, Cheap Offers
Again, two things that do not seem to be closely connected but in a way mirror what is going on. One is the cast list at The Chequers Theatre of Dreams, or rather the guest list at the country residence of the Prime Minister during the period since Cameron’ took office. The other is the group of money men rallying to the cause of New Labour.
As someone trained to look at not only at what is there but what is not it is sometimes more interesting to work out what isn’t and perhaps why. If what is there is worrying then what is absent may be a greater cause for concern.
At Chequers many of those pitching up for the good grub and chat would have known what to expect. They were much the same people as visited during the high and mighty years of the Blair’s and later during Brown’s more sober time. Others new to the place are from the same groups and having the same interests.
Apparently, there is not much evidence of Charity, nor of the Services fighting all those wars, nor of the many excellent people in many fields who might have much to offer in any informal and personal conversations with each other or leading members of the Cabinet. Bluntly, there is not much vision or intellect but a lot of money, property and celebrity.
Meanwhile over at Stony Broke Manor, the Labour Party, it is concerned that the shortfall in its budget could lead to effective insolvency. As in it’s time of government there is a mismatch of the figures and a lack of clarity about where the money has been going. What is clear that more is going out than coming in and borrowing can only go so far.
It seems that a number of financiers have appeared at the door to offer money to help it through its period of immediate difficulty. There appears to be a limit as to how much the Trade Unions can offer without getting into worse trouble themselves. Also, the demands of the Unions are such that it is advisable not to become too reliant on them which is where high finance has it uses.
We have government computing services and IT apparently in the hands of a cartel that have leached untold billions to not much purpose. Also, the Ministry of Defence is largely a supply depot for armaments companies and related contractors, also taking billions.
Also, many other departments far too close to suppliers and firms engaged in out sourcing contracts. Also, many foreign companies actively buying up our public utilities with their quasi monopoly powers. Lastly, but not least, all those accounting, consulting and finance companies engaged in various expensive wheezes and things like the Private Finance Initiative.
At Chequers the wine list is said to be very good. Unluckily, Labour do not offer decent beer and sandwiches any longer but are down to Sainsbury’s special offers.