Sunday, 13 March 2011

Political principles & venality

One of the grievances the electorate have with elected politicians is that politicians say one thing in opposition and another when in government. On this blog I have also attempted to highlight the democratic deficit that members of a constituency suffer, where that MP is a Sec of State, Minister or PPS. Additionally, I have touched on the matter of principle, where an MP is vehemently opposed to a particular policy yet when his/her party achieve office, accepts a Cabinet or Ministerial position and supports that which he/she originally opposed. An example of the foregoing was mentioned in this previous post.

As the example chosen in that previous post was Dr. Liam Fox, now Secretary of State for Defence, let us stick with him. In his column for today's Sunday Telegraph, Christopher Booker returns to the case of Pte. Epeli Uluilakeba, a 28-year-old Fijian, known to his friends and comrades as Pex:
"On Friday, David Cameron called for “a national change in attitude” towards mental problems and combat stress among soldiers who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan, recognising that their “mental scars can be every bit as damaging as the physical ones”. When Liam Fox was shadow defence secretary, this was one of his most persistent lines of attack. On July 16, 2007, for instance, he told the Commons that “the Ministry of Defence’s duty of care needs to extend more than ever beyond the time actually served in the military”. He cited a soldier who had said: “Once you are discharged, the MoD doesn't want anything to do with you.” Dr Fox called this “unacceptable”, saying that “those with chronic psychiatric damage need to know that the appropriate psychiatric help will be available years later”."
Booker ends his article thus:
"Pex’s appeal to stay is now to be put to the Home Office by a worker for the charity Veterans Aid, a lawyer who lost her son in Afghanistan. Expert medical reports, of the kind the MoD never bothered to compile, have been commissioned. In recent months, having been penniless and forbidden to take paid work, Pex has been living with a Fijian friend on MoD property. Last week, after discovering this, Dr Fox’s officials ordered him to leave immediately."
Richard North, EU Referendum, summed up my feelings on this matter, when ending this post, he wrote:
"At least, though, we have solved one formerly intractable problem, when we tried to work out how low a politician could sink. In Dr Fox, we now have the answer."
At 10pm this evening on BBC2 there is a chance to see one of the best films made: "V for Vendetta" and from that film I once again quote:
"There is something terribly wrong with this country, isn't there?"
There so obviously is something terribly wrong when a man who was prepared to lay down his life for another country, who suffered being blown up and seeing three of his mates killed beside him faces deportation - yet we have the likes of Mohammed Ibrahim, an Iraqi Kurd, who left 12-year-old Amy Houston dying under the wheels of his Rover car as she crossed the road in Highercroft in November 2003, who since arriving in the UK in 2001 from Iraq, has been convicted for driving while twice disqualified and uninsured, possession of cannabis, burglary and theft, harassment and damage to property, given leave to remain. 

As we have politicians such as Dr. Liam Fox (and he is far from alone when it comes to lack of principle, coupled with excess venality) I really to believe it time - to paraphrase Leonard Cohen - that we the people "Take Westminster"!


pixijade said...

it just shows how far all the politicians will go when in opposition to try and attain office. As you say Dr Fox is by far not the only minister of state or MP, to have in effect lied their way to power.
"There is something terribly wrong with this country, isn't there?"
indeed, it is about time that both the political elite as well as the public woke up to the fact and took action!

WitteringsfromWitney said...

p: Of course Fox is not alone in this practise!

If you haven't seen "V", do watch.

Methinks, at this rate, the public won't take much longer to cotton on!