If our gang of old codgers is any guide there are a lot of angry people about right now. For some time Bankers have been near the bottom of the most trusted professions, now they have dropped below estate agents and politicians. Yesterday Bob Diamond said that “some people acted in a manner not consistent with our culture and values”. Wrong. What the whiz-kids did in regard to Libor was completely in line with the culture and values that people like him have created.
Visit any of the watering-holes in the City of London at about 4.30pm and you will be able to observe the gangs of braying, sharply dressed kids whose sense of entitlement is breathtaking. While people everywhere are losing their jobs because of the rash behaviour of the Banks, the Bolly keeps flowing for these arrogant yobs with posh voices. Contrition for all the damage they have done? Absolutely not. People like Diamond have driven them on, paid them obscenely high rewards and encouraged them to believe that their world is the equivalent to a casino.
Of course we now know that they have been busy not merely speculating but also behaving dishonestly. Public confidence in the banks is now zero and heads must roll. If Diamond knew about this he is a knave, if he didn’t he is an incompetent fool. So our dear leader was right to take to the air yesterday with his insistence that the man at the top must always accept responsibility for the misdeeds of his organisation. But David Cameron is guilty of hypocrisy.
Jeremy Hunt is still in his ministerial post despite the corrupt behaviour of his department in regard to the Murdoch’s bid for BSkyB. Instead of doing the honourable thing, he sacked his adviser, Adam Smith. The prime minister himself is still in his high office despite admissions – that had to be dragged from him under oath – that he was intimately involved with various senior News Corp executives at a time when neutrality should have been mandatory. And Andrew Lansley is still in his post despite deliberately misleading the public, and the medical professions, about his intentions to marketise the NHS by stealth.
Yesterday the British Medical Association passed a vote of no confidence in Lansley and demanded he resign. A few weeks ago the Royal College of Nursing did likewise. Lest you imagine that this is simply part of some academic debate about ingrowing toenails you should perhaps ask your doctor. Amongst other things he will tell you that the cancer network is being dismantled and funding for cancer treatments halved. The network has achieved wonders in recent years, one hospital has undertaken diagnostics, another surgery and so on. Individual centres of excellence have worked seamlessly to create a massive fightback against cancer. Is it any coincidence that the private sector is running a huge advertising campaign offering private treatment for cancer? Of course not.
Meantime George Osborne and Lansley are busy threatening hospitals with closure as a result of Private Finance Initiatives, PFIs, imposed on them by the previous government. PFIs were a disastrous idea aimed at keeping the cost of buildings off the national balance sheet. What they have actually done is to stuff the pockets of private ventures whose interest in patients is akin to Diamond’s interest in customers. And guess what? Osborne is still signing off PFIs, at the last count the coalition had imposed £17 billion’s worth.
On last night’s David Bumblebee’s Question Time, Tony ‘Baldrick’ Robinson lashed out at the astonishing decline in competence and integrity of Bankers, minsters..the whole establishment. It was refreshing. Bang on cue the loopy minister who tried to sell off the forests said that it was all the fault of Labour. At this, a lady in the audience asked “for how much longer are you going to blame them? You sought election on the basis of making improvements – when will you start?”
It is not over-dramatic to claim that all the people that once earned our trust - MPs, bank managers, solicitors, doctors – seem to have faded from our esteem. All we have left are posh rich boys who seem incapable of recognising that all that they say reeks of hypocrisy.
Pity that Screaming Lord Sutch is no longer with us!
SOME QUOTES TO THINK ABOUT; ”Television is for appearing on, not for looking at”…….Noel Coward “Never miss a chance to have sex or appear on television”….Gore Vidal “Television has proved that people will look at anything rather than each other”…….Ann Landers “On television you can say you’ve pricked your finger but not the other way around”……George Carlin “I don’t watch television. I think it destroys the art of talking abot oneself”……Stephen Fry “The first thing a comedian does on gettimg an unscheduled laugh is to verify the state of his buttons”……Alva Johnson “The worst words in the English language are ; ‘We have to talk’. Either that or ‘Whose bra is this?’……..Jerry Seinfield