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Monday 12 October 2009

Len Freeman | 18:10 UK time, Monday, 12 October 2009

Here is what is coming up in tonight's programme

An extraordinary evening at Westminster. Within the last hour Downing Street has had to admit that the prime minister will repay £12,415 after an independent audit of all MPs' expenses claims since 2004.

Gordon Brown's claims were within the rules but auditor Sir Thomas Legg has said £2,000 a year for cleaning and £1,000 for gardening was sufficient - and the PM claimed considerably more for both.

Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg is to repay £910 of the £3,900 he claimed for gardening between 2006 and 2009 and we are expecting far more pay back requests to be revealed by the time we go to air.

We'll discuss the damage caused by Sir Thomas' investigations and the likely fall-out.

Also tonight - why can't ITV find a chairman and what does this tell us about the state of broadcasting?

And we have a special report into the English Defence League - are they really a dangerous right wing organisation or a legitimate protest group for a disenfranchised minority?

Join Jeremy at 10.30pm


  • Comment number 1.


    National Socialists and fascists are left wing. The right wing are anarchists, i.e free-market libertarians like The Conservatives and New Labour. You should not judge politicians by what they say they are, but by the outcomes of their policies. National Socialists like Stalinists are statists who run Comand Economies, Big Government, i.e regulators. They put the means of production, exchange and communication in public ownership. Hitler did that, so did Stalin, that is why they were allies in 1939.

    In the past, the so called 'communists' which Mosely and his Black-Shirts founght in East London were not Jews per se, but Jewish anarchists aka Bolsheviks. It was jewish Bolshevisks/anarchists who wwre sent into Russian in 1917 to get Russia out of the war by toppling the state. These same Jewish Trotskyites were later ousted by Stalin and the USSR. They were purged in the late 1920s and 1930s because they were thought to be a threat to the soviet welfare state! Think of Militant Tendency being purged by Old Labour in the past. Those who threaten welfare states do so by privatising them. They thereby erode them.

    Get it? New Labour is not Old Labour. They have no Clause IV! They keep eroding the state. They are Neo-Labour - the New Left - Neo-Conservatives. Trotskyite, much like Keith Joseph's 1979 Anarchistic Conservative Party (with the front woman Margaret Thatcher!).

    A lot of people are being misled (and it's not me that's doing it).

  • Comment number 2.

    shouldn't that be a disenfranchised majority?

  • Comment number 3.

    Oh! I get it. The purpose of tonight's programme is to demonstrate beyond reasonable doubt that the EDL does only represent a minority, in case anyone was getting worried. Typical strategy of polite society, to belittle opposition, so, raising the issue only to knock it back is tantamount to damning with faint praise. Nice work NN!

  • Comment number 4.

    Today's story of geatest importance to the nation and its remaining democracy is the report published on the Damien Green arrest.

    Why then did it justify only the briefest mention on the 6pm news? Please can it be covered fully in the 10pm news and hopefully Newsnight. Finally, what a perfect subject for This Week on Thursday night!

    This is my first post here so I am unfamiliar with your style but hope you won't be offended if I suggest the Guardian piece on the topic is a reasonable starting point.

  • Comment number 5.

    Why does an mp have to claim expenses for gardening, don't they have the weekend off the same as i do, that is the time i plant my veg,wife nags me to plant the daffs,top up the screen wash on her car,whats the diference between an mp and me? i too go to work in London and i have to drive because the public transport is appalling.

  • Comment number 6.

    If you have one bottle of wine and four glasses the share decanted to each glass would be reasonable. If you had six, eight, twenty glasses the share would go down. With one bottle of wine and an ever multiplying number of glasses eventually the the portion would not be enough to satiate any.

    Planet Earth is the bottle, humans are the glasses.

    Simple really .......

    It’s called ........

    Cow Economics.

  • Comment number 7.

    from mimpromptu
    Good work, Streetphotobeing, in challenging the nasty,
    The stupid and mad power hungry wasty.
    While he is at it, with Mandy’s approval,
    It’s painful and unpleasant with need for removal.

    It looks like they’re not going to last for much longer,
    With one being wonger and the other honger
    Or maybe it is the other way round,
    And to my delight they have now been found.

  • Comment number 8.

    from mimpromptu
    In my post at #97 I speak of a French Professor whose 'French History via cinema and newsreel' course I attended for one year at the French Institute and whose name has been removed by the mods. He is a well known writer in France so I don't think he would have minded me mentioning his name but in any case his classes were most interesting and like Alain de Botton he too has the gift of the gab. And there is one more specific similarity between them. The French Professor was also awarded Legion d'Honneur by the French Government for his teaching and writing achievements/contribution,etc

  • Comment number 9.

    I'm trying to imagine just exactly how someone can spend roughly £10,000 on cleaning (as Gordon Brown has done)- I just can't work out how it could possibly come to that figure! Astonishing...

  • Comment number 10.


    Even 600 MPs paying back 12,000 i.e. 7,200,000 is dwarfed by the 175,000,000,000 a year being borrowed with interest in order to sort out the mess which the glorious, good-for-the-economy-we-can't-afford-to-lose-them, Financial Service sector helped bring about with the aid of this government's light-fingerned regulation - and let's not forget that the Conservatives and Liberal-Democrats helped this happen.

  • Comment number 11.

    Panis96 (#9) His wife Sarah, at the Labour Party Conference, said he was very messy/untidy.

  • Comment number 12.


    The corrupt denizens of Westminster have emitted a great sigh of relief, that they can make a massive song and dance, over allowances, while the other swathe of disgraceful practices - adding up to expensive undemocracy - continue unabated and unchallenged.

    Westminster 'draws its own' like the Dark Lord, and in the darkness of that pretentious pile, binds them. No doubt a few sense the horrors of that Black Hole, and pull back before the Schwarzschild radius of no-return (no return to decency) is crossed; the rest are guilty by association. They are gullible fools and/or willing knaves, to the last cipher.

    How predictable that Brown is doing HIS song and dance on the Globopoly board: hiding his abject failure (having made a pact with the Debt Devil) by strutting a number entitled: "Look at me, I'm Saving the World" (as only I know how).

    Westminster is a vile place, existing for the enactment of bizarre rites and rituals, spinning and jousting, at best unconducive to, and at worst inimical to, sound nurturing governance. There is just one crack in the wall of that citadel, into to which we might insert the lever of INDEPENDENCE. This is the only route that I can see that might end the private party-party, it being a move to


  • Comment number 13.

    I don't have any time for the EDL, but I wonder if they'll be presented in the same fair and balanced manner as they have been thus far.

    I wonder if Newsnight's piece will have the same level of professionalism as displayed in the reports on the recent Harrow riot. Given the rioting was purely at the hands of the Muslims and the far-left protestors, with not a member of the EDL in sight; it was only natural to brand it as a disturbance caused by the far-right.

    Virtually non-existent EDL members are more of a concern than hundreds of violent young, Muslim men. Go figure. I wonder how many more will be driven in to EDL's arms by this kind of media treatment. How long will we have to wait for a proper, public examination of the threat that lies within our Muslim communities, given those who rioted aren't the extremists were supposed to be concerned about.

    The media's implicit policy seems to be this: 'because a lid appears to have been kept on the anger (misguided, obviously) bubbling under the surface in Muslim areas (bar the odd out-break of violence), we ought to pretend it doesn't exist. Far better that, than confronting the ugly truth. A continuation of multi-culturism is in order – brand critics as 'racist' at all costs.'

    Tonight's Channel 4 doc., The Enemy Within, was the latest manifestation of this – the British people are the cause of the anger, not the victims.

  • Comment number 14.

    Re: Fraudulent claims by MPs

    Why has no-one mentioned the 'F' word when discussing the antics of those in this Fraudsters' Parliament?

    No.... not that word... I mean 'F' for FRAUD as described in Sections 2-4 of The Fraud Act 2006 which came into force in January 2007.

    The Act could have been written specifically to deal with offences which a committee packed with carefully selected cronies would deem to be an offence which can be washed away with an apology!

  • Comment number 15.

    #13 Mr Calm Tonight's Channel 4 doc., The Enemy Within, was the latest manifestation of this – the British people are the cause of the anger, not the victims

    Yes precisely why I didn't watch it! I'm fed up with being told how I must behave towards other religious groups. If they mind their own business and quietly go about their religion that's fine, but I don't want any religion forced down my throat, especially Islam. There are several hundred countries in the world that adhere to that faith, if these people are such strong supporters why don't they move to these ultra religious countries, who are they to change our culture?

  • Comment number 16.


    "Why has no-one mentioned the 'F' word when discussing the antics of those in this Fraudsters' Parliament?"

    For the same reason that, in Britain, deliberate non-payment of invoice debt, at - or long after - the due date, is a CIVIL OFFENCE when any fool can see it is fraud (and even, perhaps, 'living off immoral earnings'). After long avoidance, the frauding MPs passed a law that a creditor can charge INTEREST - a gift for the insolvent frauding debtors, who ultimately go bust and take solvent companies down with them.

    Britain is riddled with 'gentlemanly corruption'. It might almost, with alcohol (a corrupting ethos), form the warp and weft of our cultural fabric.

    While we have the sort of governance that can breathe freely in Westminster, we are beyond escape.

  • Comment number 17.

    #12 from mimpromptu
    I think are hitting it right on the head in this post with regard to the black hole, Madam Mim, the ranging gorilla and the rest in this post.
    You may or may not be happy about it but I've forwarded some of your comments regarding the above to the President of the USA and it looks like he now understands the whole story and is prepared to act on it. People don't always understand ordinary language, it just doesn't sink in, whereas metaphoric expressions, etc., seem to exert much bigger impact. I have a feeling that my ditties, for example, are finally making people take note of what I've been trying to tell them for a very long time now.
    Your image of the 'ranging gorilla' is proving to be a stroke of genius on your part. And it is you who's helped me in creating the character of Madam Mim although originally you seemed to have a different view of her.
    Thank you for your support and for not being scared of jj and the like.

  • Comment number 18.


    This was Clegg giving substance to my observations at #12 above. His point was that rooting out allowance fiddles would make Westminster 'whiter than white'.

    No Clegacy-Nick, the Westminster malaise goes right to the bottom of the pit. Dealing with a bit of scum, on that murky pool, will hardly 'touch the surface'.

  • Comment number 19.

    There is Big Trouble Brewing

    I'm beginning to get quite worried about rioting and violence in this country. I watched the piece about EDL, I also watch the local news, all those young fit men waiting along the shores of France to illegally get in here. I can see a strong resemblance and young men spoiling for a fight, it won't be paintballing then Barrie. ; ) I'm sorry to say I can see mob rule taking over in dark alleyways.

  • Comment number 20.


    When Blair finally declares the truth of his being, and his presence here, there will be a New Heaven and a New Earth. All other religions will boil away into space, and his shining, pure essence, will preside over the 'Millennium Faith'. At this time, his usual utterance of: "What I say to people is" will transmute into: "And I say unto you" (probably followed with a 'verily' or two).

    It's going to Hurt in the morning.

  • Comment number 21.

    from mimpromptu
    Having had a rather difficult day for this reason or another, I thought some nonsense dittying would be a bit of release:
    ‘Why would a cricket be gullible to wicked?’
    Madam Mim has asked of herself.
    What’s in it for him, for gullible cricket
    Who can’t resist licking the wicked?

  • Comment number 22.

    A good piece on the English Defence League but I am a tad cynical about the organisers - despite the joyous burning of the Nazi flag.

    The badge photo sounds a lot like the UDA - "No Surrender" and the BNP have had organisers photographed at their demo's. There have always been links between the far right football hooligans, the UDA and the BNP and it seems like a nexus that may exist here and would be denied by the BNP.

    As in Italy with their "Home Guard" the dangers of an organisation easing towards street militia status are self-evident and I am sure won't be tolerated.

    But it is quite possible that many members are naive.

  • Comment number 23.

    what a fascinating evening. first i watched Saving Britain's Past - English Heritage have decided to list a couple of shabby old fifties buildings in Brick Lane, which housed the first Bangladeshis (on the basis that they'll want a record of their heritage), meanwhile Tower Hamlets Planning Department is giving the OK for the Georgian architecture of Banglatown to be dismantled by the owners (there's absolutely no reason why Bangladeshis should value Georgian architecture but it's sad that a British local council doesn't)...then I watched The Enemy Within (and was surprised that the expulsion of anarchists from east europe took place at the end of the 19th century not after ww1, i've obviously misread jj's posts) and I was thinking, 'Yes, but you've missed the rest of jj's theory - the anarchists went on to become the neo-cons and took over the financial sector!'. So, if we are to draw a comparison between the late 19th century and now, I guess we know who'll be holding the purse strings in another 50 years! Then I watched NN - when I think back to the time when homegrown terorism was regularly discussed, even though the inflammatory messages of some websites were exposed, I don't remember a chief of police talking publically on air about investigations into suspect material/organisations. interesting also how markedly the anti-anti-islamists have changed their strategy.

  • Comment number 24.

    #15 ecolizzy

    "who are they to change our culture?"

    They are British citizens - easy!

    Culture changes and that is not a bad thing. If somebody is quietly practicing their religion then they aren't forcing it down your throat are they.

    No response needed as I already know that you don't like visiting London due to the racial mix so that tells me all.

  • Comment number 25.

    #17 correction to the first sentence
    I think you are hitting it right on the head with regard to the black hole, Madam Mim, the ranging gorilla and the rest in this post, Barrie.

  • Comment number 26.

    #1 jaded_jean

    You sit up all night and come up with this!

    "A lot of people are being misled (and it's not me that's doing it)."
    That is so untrue.

    "National Socialists and fascists are left wing. The right wing are anarchists, i.e free-market libertarians like The Conservatives and New Labour.
    National Socialists like Stalinists are statists who run Comand Economies, Big Government, i.e regulators.
    They put the means of production, exchange and communication in public ownership. Hitler did that, so did Stalin, that is why they were allies in 1939."

    As has been pointed out before in the Spanish Civil war was before 1939 and they were cheerfully killing each other for all they were worth. Stalin was waiting till he was stronger and Hitler waited a while and jumped first. Stalingrad was not a riverside party and I think the estimates are that Russia lost some 25-30 million to the Nazis - who did not see the Slavs as fellow socialists but as sub-humans racially.

    It has also been pointed out before that it is not at all self evident to many that National Socialists were that socialist. Hitler rarely attended the cabinet meetings on the economy. Hitler used policy as a means to an end - power - and he was amoral to the ideology hence the relationship with bankers and industrialists.

    Myself I don't see the Nazis as left or right but as amoral and evil.

    I am not Old Labour but I am sure you realise that Labour would not associate themselves with your views at any time in their history.

    Somebody who thinks Hitler was a peace lover and is "agnostic" on the Holocaust won't attract many Labour voters with their "explications" - though some may have used the BNP (who "aren't a Nazi party" anyway) as a protest but I doubt that that trend will continue.

    But then again there may be some who want you to "take them on a journey".

    The rest of us hope that you go on a journey.

  • Comment number 27.

    #3 wappaho

    If the EDL is a majority then they wouldn't need to demonstrate. Perhaps they are like the BNP. They have a website "that gets more hits than all of the other political parties put together" and hence they are going to sweep to power after the next general election.

  • Comment number 28.

    Thoroughly excellent report by Paraic O'Brian. The EDL isn't a violent organisation and it has support from many people of many different faiths/cultures - as shown in Paraic's report. I haven't seen any footage of the EDL supporters starting any violence - they are merely putting forward their point of view and nor are they advocating violence. I always thought that the UK allowed people the right to freedom of speech. Since when was it wrong to criticise?

    Is it also wrong to oppose Sharia law in this country? Although it is claimed to be a "voluntary" court whereby both parties must agree to holding their case in an Islamic Sharia law court, how many of those women would have been forced to enter into an Islamic court and adhere to Sharia law principles?

    The law of England and Wales is at odds with Sharia law, particularly concerning family law (e.g.,women have no rights to their children - the father gets custody automatically, a woman's testimony is worth half that of a man.) Should we really have two different laws of the land? How long will it be before we start having other aspects of Sharia law bought into the UK?

    And before anyone starts arguing that the Beth Din (Jewish Law Courts in the UK)([Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]) operate in the UK, let it be known, that it only applies to arbitration cases, and not to any other area of law, as the law of the land applies.

    Lively discussion with Jeremy & Tony Wright et al - I note that there were classic "Yes Minister" ways of not answering the question of whether the MPs expenses would have to be paid back. Brilliant stuff :o)

  • Comment number 29.

    #10 jaded_jean

    "and let's not forget that the Conservatives and Liberal-Democrats helped this happen"

    Rubbish. Labour organised the highly imperfect regulation and the bankers did the rest.

    The BNP and/or the far right (as most people would describe your views and in contrast to your #1) wouldn't be allowed anywhere near power.

    You have two two Euro MEP's and a London Assembly Member who finds that church bells and dyslexia make him declare local murders that never happened.

    They belong to the BNP but they "aren't a Nazi party" they are a "modern and progressive" party.

    Perhaps there are more people with dyslexia living near to churches than we all appreciate.

    Still you keep trying to trawl for disillusioned Old Labour voters who could stomach the idea of Hitler as a "peace lover" - with a compulsion to declare war on weaker countries and shoot civilians.

  • Comment number 30.

    #13 strugglingtostaycalm

    "Given the rioting was purely at the hands of the Muslims and the far-left protestors, with not a member of the EDL in sight; it was only natural to brand it as a disturbance caused by the far-right."

    As the piece pointed out the EDL are trying to provoke such acts by provoking law abiding Muslims.

    The far left protestors (you can have a fight with jaded_Jean at #1 but its like a dialogue with an old Lord Haw Haw record) are a tad suspicious and I don't blame them.

    But they too play into the hands of the puppeteers behind the scenes who probably will come to light soon enough.

  • Comment number 31.

    " If the EDL is a majority then they wouldn't need to demonstrate. "

    That would only be true if it was also true that a majority can never be oppressed.

    " As the piece pointed out the EDL are trying to provoke such acts by provoking law abiding Muslims. "

    The reporter did, provocatively, make that assertion but the EDL didn't rise to the bait. You could also argue that the EDL has arisen out of what they see as provocation. Sooner or later you have to say it doesn't matter who started it, where do we go from here in a small country with such different attitudes to living? Gordon is selling off local councils so before long we may have a two state solution.

  • Comment number 32.


    If Citizenship confers the automatic right to change the culture then the Britishness test for immigrants is a bit pointless. We might as well ask questions about the culture of the country the person originates from, no?

  • Comment number 33.

    from mimpromptu
    Jeremy Paxman announced that tonight they'd be talking about, among other things, the fact that it is Sasha Cohen's birthday today so to mark the occasion I've composed a ditty. He should be able to accept the jibe as it is him himself who thrives on this sort of thing:
    Although there are as many truths as there are people
    There are those who see deeper and those who are fickle
    Sasha Cohen is one of the crappos
    And not my type of person to go with to supper
    So I’m not sending him any good wishes
    Because of the crap against others he pushes

  • Comment number 34.

    from mimpromptu to Streetphotobeing
    I shall probably send one more ditty this morning, this time about Mrs Thatcher, but I don't want to put Sasha with her in the same bag.
    In one of the street shops in the street called Queensway
    There is a tee-shirt displayed on one of the hooks.
    ‘I love sex’, he says, Sasha Cohen that is
    But Mim will have nothing to do with this.

    Mim abhors the lightweights of this kind of ‘calibre’
    As they lack moral fibre and their souls are too feeble.

  • Comment number 35.

    An official announcement from mimpromptu
    I have just informed Jeremy Paxman that should anything happen to me I'm putting my will into his hands and he can deal it with in any way he sees fit. That includes copyrights to my ditties and musings, etc.

  • Comment number 36.

    from mimpromptu
    Here's the promised ditty on Lady Thatcher:

    Although Maggie her birthday shares with Sacha today
    The Lady has more fibre and substance in her
    Than the comedian who thrives on taking the mickey
    Out of innocent people with his characters that tickle
    Just on the surface the stupid and fickle.

    Whatever her mistakes and whatever weaknesses
    She did help shake the world, Denis’ Mrs.
    To this day her appeal remains flying high
    Who with Ronald made a bit of a pie
    For the commies to swallow and the Soviets to die
    In the countries till the nineties they did occupy.

    So let’s raise a glass to Maggie & Ron
    On her birthday and cheer along
    The good work that they managed to do
    For the Poles and Bulgarians and the rest of the group!

    Hope you have an enjoyable day today, Streetphotobeing

  • Comment number 37.

    from mimpromptu to Streetphotobeing re: the spelling of Sacha Baron Cohen's name at #33 and '34: it's Sacha not Sasha
    But there is, in fact, a lovely female skater whose name is Sasha Cohen. I've just watched her on u-tube and particularly liked her rendition of Beethoven's 'Moonlight Sonata'. Her movements and stretching ability, in particular, are simply amazing and it's quite obvious she feels the music. I don't think I would be in a hurry to compete with her but then I'm not intending to compete with anybody on ice anyway, as I just love gliding and twirling my own way, like it or not.

  • Comment number 38.

    Also tonight - why can't [ ] find a [ ] and what does this tell us about the state of broadcasting?

    It would rather suggest o me that the only model that seems to attract those keen on the big bucks is not in the commercial sector.

    Like that is working out so well.

  • Comment number 39.

    I wish both Sacha Baron Cohen - in my opinion on of the greatest comedy talents around - and Baroness Margaret Thatcher a very happy birthday today :o)

  • Comment number 40.

    from mimpromptu
    As by now we have talked about so much about so many things with honesty it seems, I'd like to share with you what happens to me:
    When I see a pretty lady
    And think what could be
    I do not get jealous
    But panic sets in.

    And I never thought love I would find
    I may have been wrong cautious with delight.
    I'm definitely going to make it to Queen's today sooner or later as gliding and twirling are such a pleasure and relief for/to me whatever the future. And the day is beautiful, and the birds are singing; I may further engage in doing more snapping.

  • Comment number 41.


    Where is the 'Sampson of Westminster' who will pull the whole whipping, lobby-plodding, Speakerama down on the conniving lot of them?

    Poetry, this year, focused on the theme of Heroes and Heroines; not one has ever stood up, in that godless place, to denounce it TO ITS FACE. Yet it is clear from reading Chris Mullin that HE - at least - knew the state of it. He knew about expensive junkets to foreign lands, yielding nothing of worth. He knew of the meetings, terminated with agreement TO MAKE NO RECORD, as the truths discussed were too true. Etc.Etc. I award you 'Half-a-Hero' Chris.

    I am moved to wonder why mavericks such as Frank Field (and, to a degree David Davis) do not 'do a Sampson' on behalf of the people, and, of the greater good. Sadly: not the sort of question Newsnight will be asking. TOO edgy perhaps??

    'Lord' Archer on Radio 4, this morning; might that be a clue to what ails us?

  • Comment number 42.

    repaying the debt

    the mp's indulgences are hardly on the radar of world politics practices?

    if someone wrongly claimed 100k from the benefits system what would happen to them? would saying sorry be enough?

    talking of payback when will the bankers pay back to clear their debt? it should be seen as their debt and not the national debt.time to tax their profits at 70% till its paid off.


    bbc execs who say they need big wages seem shy of going into the private sector regardless of the wages? is there no one in the bbc with the ambition, drive, courage and vision to take on itv? either there is no one with those skills or perhaps its just too comfy in the bbc not having to deal with shareholders and all that? time for wage cuts?

  • Comment number 43.


    bookhimdano (#42) "is there no one in the bbc with the ambition, drive, courage and vision to take on itv?"

    Do you ever watch ITV? Educate and inform it does not. Do you remember Lou Grade? Do you remember Berlin in the 1920s?

    People who are only to happy to give the people whatever they want include pushers and pornographers.

    See the BBC today on ASBO wars. Try to see ASBOs as 'Anti Social Personality Disorder' Orders.

    These should be given out in the media and Financial Service Sector! Not that they ever work, we used to call such 'fascism' censorship and personnel selection. :-(

  • Comment number 44.


    i agree much of tv is fast food kebab/burger van fare

    people might want grease in a sesame seed bun but giving the more balanced food is public service?

    its the chefs who produce good food who get paid well not the fast food merchants. so why are tv execs given chef wages when all they usually churn out is fast food?

  • Comment number 45.


    Oh groan! I have viewed The Flying Postman, communing with our mercenaries, on foreign soil. Clearly, as HOME SECRETARY he needed to go ABROAD to help them understand their (obscure) role in making our streets safer.
    The other half of the message would seem to be: 'consummate PM in waiting'. Interviewed by Andrew Marr, he had all his answers 'off Pat'. Not bad for a postman . . .

    So LABOUR are busy manipulating our 'terrors' (and anti-Brown feeling) into keeping them in power, while CONSERVATIVE Dave goes for the high monetary ground (standing on a hill of money) and manipulates our money-worries to gain No 10. None of it is about US, is it!

    If governance is ever to be primarily about us, we shall first have to SPOIL PARTY GAMES.

  • Comment number 46.

    funny how the guardian make a song and dance about reporting about parliament but refuse to report those journalists it says it has evidence have broken the law?

  • Comment number 47.


    I appeal, again, for Britain to be put into 'Special Measures'. I understand the 'Norway School' is well run; lets get their Head, and a few governors, over here to shake out our incompetence. Either that, or give us 'British Academy Status' and flog the country to some obscenely wealthy foreigner.

    Altogether now: "THINGS, CAN ONLY GET WOR-ORSE!"

  • Comment number 48.

    I wonder with the English Defence League and the BNP hijacking National Flags whether it would be legal and practical to make it illegal for a political party or organisation to use a flag as a symbol.

    Its wrong that people can't wield their own flag without fear of being associated with the racists.

  • Comment number 49.

    Newsnight does your "far right" expert have any views on some long standing issues for me and probably others?

    Firstly when you communicate with specimens from that primeval sludge you get typically slimy answers when you try to find out basic facts.

    Why do they hate Jews? You get plenty on "internal political and economic enemies" and Stalin ejecting "anarchists and Trotskyites" in the 1930's. But ultimately you get plenty of bluster and no real answer.

    So do they actually care and are they simply bound together by their social insecurities in the hatred of another group and it matters not really why that group is targeted?

    Similarly its quite clear that there is no scientific basis for their racial theories that impact on their social ideas like eugenics and so on. Genetic variation is greater within a race than between races.

    On the Holocaust their denials and "agnosticism" aren't credible in the face of the Nazi documentation, contemporary films, the camps themselves, trials and witness statements.

    In general their amoral lies imply that they really don't need the ideology as anything more than a set of rules to bind their cult like followers together. As Bertrand Russell suggested National Socialism is no more than a "replacement aristocracy".

    Its just an ill thought out power grab where the bigger the beast the greater the power that was obtained.

    So in the past Hitler took all power and sat above other competing beasts like Goring and Himmler and so on.

    Its the quick way to war and mass murder in the past - these days the worry is more currently low level terrorism like the "Ricin" family in the North East and Lewington and street level thuggery like the beating of a Romany woman with a four day old child in Belfast not so long back.

    National Socialism is not right or left its just evil.

  • Comment number 50.


    who would choose people with no qualification to be ship's captains or airline pilots or heart surgeons or financial advisers with nothing more than general knowledge? That is exactly what we do. MPs should have a qualification in a relevant competence before being given ministry jobs. while no safeguard of bad practice it would weed out the rough trade?

    uk democracy institutionalises incompetence?

  • Comment number 51.


    Britain seems to be an allegorical, cautionary tale - come to life. You wouldn't need to make it up. We do seem to be under a spell, don't we?
    That the terrible Archer was barking away (barking?) on the Today Program, this morning, and the idea that Europe might well elevate Blair, both beggar belief. Perhaps the spell is a death wish.

  • Comment number 52.

    bookhimdano (#50) "uk democracy institutionalises incompetence?"

    Yes - it's good for some people's economy - there's less effective regulation that way. Fewer busy bodies getting in the way clear, enforceable laws, and that meddlesome sort of stuff....

  • Comment number 53.

    Jean Sarozy! Can you believe it? I can!

  • Comment number 54.

    basically what we are saying to iraq and afghanistan is we want you to have the same deomcratic incompetence [ie with oligarchy puppetmasters] we have here. that is our great vision of society we are prepared to have unlimited wars for.

  • Comment number 55.

    2000,- per annum for cleaning amounts to about 42 pounds per week, surely that is a bit tight for keeping no.10 clean and tidy? Visions of mrs. Brown hoovering and singing 'I want to break free' spring to mind.

  • Comment number 56.

    thegangofone (#49) "Similarly its quite clear that there is no scientific basis for their racial theories that impact on their social ideas like eugenics and so on. Genetic variation is greater within a race than between races."

    Don't you think it just a little bit odd that Charles Darwin and Ronald Fisher didn't agree? How about Edwards?

    Scene: The Serengeti. Two Zebras, one having spotted a pack of lions, the other has a very bad dose of Political Correctness (mainly put about by lions incidentally!).

    Zebra Normal: "Hey , I'm out of here, there's a pack of those predator lions over there!!"

    Zebraofone: "You racist scum!! I've told you before that genetic variation is greater within mammals than it is between them!"

    Zebra Normal: Idiot!!

  • Comment number 57.


    Well done Guardian,
    the libel lawyers can be beat, realise that there is a lack of ethics among some in the workplace

    by the way, if some of the expenses were incorrectly clamimed could a case be made for MPs to also repay the proportion of their salary relating to the time they have spent filling up their (bogus) claims, plus associated office expenses back to the Taxpayers,

    mmm sounds a bit legal perhaps !

    best wishes

  • Comment number 58.


    Breaking up the UK, breaking up the Parliamentary system -> welcome to Lisbon and the EU NUTS/Regional Development Agencies?

  • Comment number 59.

    ...Well done Guardian,....

    why do they suppress their information about the journalists? we have been 'well dunn' by them indeed?


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