Sunday 6 October 2019

Tory tunnel vison

The Tories have a long history of calming to be the "party of law and order,"  so much so that journalists in the 60s invented their standard bearer as "Lora Norda."  At their Conference this year the Home Secretary, Priti Patel, revived the claim and warned criminals to "watch out, we are coming for you." 

Given that:
  • their prorogation of parliament  was declared illegal by the Supreme court;
  • the entire government is apparently seeking ways to circumvent the Benn Act which make leaving the EU with no deal illegal;
  • the prime minister is under investigation  for improper use of public funds for whilst Mayor of London;
  • the Leave campaign, on which they set such store, was found guilty of financial irregularities in the referendum.
warning criminals to "watch out" is perhaps an unwise thereat for a Conservative to make to make at the moment.  

Or maybe M/s Patel just thinks that what's sauce for society's misfit ganders  doesn't apply to its  rich and powerful geese.

Another case of tunnel vision was exposed on Radio 4's "Any Questions!" on Friday.  When asked the very pertinent question "Has the government suddenly found a whole Magic Money orchard" given the amounts they are currently promising to spend on police, education, hospitals, infrastructure,  and more, Tory Minister Robert Buckland had the sauce to explain that  the because interest rates were at an all time low this made now a good time for public expenditure.   

Interest rates have, of course, been at an "all time low" for the past decade, throughout the long drawn out period of austerity which has caused so much misery to so many of the less well off, and, through the starvation of funds to Local Government, done so much damage to the public realm.


  1. the Leave campaign, on which they set such store, was found guilty of financial irregularities in the referendum

    Actually the Leave campaign has just been cleared of criminal financial irregularities, while the Remain campaign is still under investigation; and that doesn't even count the unfair £9,000,000 Remain campaign leaflet delivered by the government to every household, which wasn't counted on the official spending but should have been.

  2. So their financial irregularities were "Civil." Does that make them OK?

    1. It means they were honest mistakes in the paperwork, not dastardly conspiracy. And as I understand it the paperwork requirements for campaign finanacial returns are so complicated that such mistakes are inevitable, and every party / campaign ends up getting some fines after every election / referendum (including the Remain campaign, including your beloved Lib Dems).

      So in short: yes, it does, unless you can explain why it's not okay for the Leave campaign to make honest mistakes but it is okay for the Lib Dems and the Remain campaign to make exactly the same kind of mistakes.

    2. I agree that the Liberal Democrat local parties occasionally make errors in their election returns, but wasn't aware that the Remain campaign has been found guilty of any after the 2016 Referendum.

  3. See 'Wake Up and Vote and DDB UK Limited' —

    1. What a surprise. I wasn't aware of that. Thanks for alerting me to it.

    2. Hardly a surprise — as above, as I understand it the rules and forms for this are so complex that it would be amazing if there hadn't been at least one honest mistake made.

    3. An indulgent friend has done some research for me. He writes:

      "Vote Leave" was fined £61,000 by the Electoral Commission for spending irregularities.

      Vote Leave lodged an appeal that was partly proceeded with but was then dropped by Vote Leave. However the costs of the aborted appeal were charged back to Vote Leave - a further £180,000 on top of the original fine. The original fine has now been paid.

      With regard to the two cases cited in the document you hyperlinked to me I note that there were two fines mentioned: one of £1,000 and one of £1,800

      In contrast to the £61,000 fine on Vote Leave these latter two would seem to be "small beer". Would you agree?"

      There seems to be a bit of difference between the size and significance of the "hones mistakes."

    4. There seems to be a bit of difference between the size and significance of the "hones mistakes."

      Well, there certainly seems to be a difference between how the two sides are treated by the establishment, definitely.