Corruption, secrecy, non-accountability are rampant in Britain: how that should be put right

So today the Independent Police Complaints Commission has cleared armed police officers of any wrongdoing over the killing of Mark Duggan over 3 years ago, following an inquest verdict of lawful killing a year ago.   However the police officer who fired the fatal shots refused to be interviewed by the IPCC; why could he not be compelled to answer questions?   A week ago it was decided that no further action would be taken after the child sex abuse victims in Rochdale were repeatedly let down by police officers, one of whom retired to escape prosecution; why is retirement allowed to preempt prosecution?

For 40 years, it is now alleged, investigations into a high-level paedophile ring in Westminster were halted and evidence suppressed to protect senior MPs and police officers.   For a decade industrial-scale phone-hacking at the News of the World was brushed aside by the police for fear of Murdoch.   Still no-one has been held to account for  the illegal shooting of Jean-Charles Menezes in July 2005, or for the calculated deception used by undercover police officers against environmental activists, or even for the Hillsborough disaster in which 96 football fans died because of policing errors.   But of course it’s not just the police.

Who was held to account when the bankers crashed the economy in 2008-9 and the taxpayers had to pay £70bn to bail them out, and are still paying now though semi-permanent austerity?   Nobody.   Which senior bankers have been prosecuted for pensions-mis-selling, endowment mortgage fraud, the enormous PPI scam, Libor-rigging, or servicing drug cartels or pariah states?   None.   Who was held to account for GCHQ’s mass surveillance of private communications for a decade unbeknown to the public (and would very likely still be continuing now were it not for Edward Snowden)?   Nobody.   Were the biggest miscreants over the MPs’ expenses scandal prosecuted?   No.

So what should be done to restore accountability which has clearly broken down across the board?   The regulatory system is clearly not working properly, either because it is ineffective (as Ofgem is in supervising the energy market) or because it issues fines whilst not prosecuting the perpetrators (as the FCA in supervising financial markets) or because it lacks the powers to enforce its decisions (as the Ombudsman system does).   What is clearly needed is a back-up system that can really enforce due penalties.

The most effective way to do that would be an extension of the powers of Commons Select Committees which already effectively hold ministers to account, but need further powers to enforce resignations or disqualification from office which are ultimately the only really effective sanctions.   Where a Select Committee, after reviewing a controversial case and publicly interviewing the personnel concerned, believes that further action is required beyond that prescribed by the existing regulatory body, it should be empowered to draft an appropriate motion for debate on the floor of the House and a vote which would register a final decision.

8 thoughts on “Corruption, secrecy, non-accountability are rampant in Britain: how that should be put right

  1. Personally I think that the shooting Jean-Charles Menezes in July 2005, illustrates the problem here perfectly, (although his death is deeply regrettable,) it’s difficult to entirely blame the Police for erring as they did; particularly as there was a real possibility that major terrorist attack, (and I can still remember the Manchester bombing vividly,) might easily have been in progress and if it had been the consequences of failing to stop him would have been catastrophic.

    But as you rightly say someone, (in that case Sir Ian Blair,) should have bitten the bullet and taken full personal and professional responsibility and resigned, (as should David Nicholson after the Mid Staffs abuses came to light,) the fact that he didn’t and was completely supported by Jacqui Smith the then Labor home secretary and has left a foul taste in lot of people’s mouths.

    As for Duggan who was under investigation by Operation Trident, a subdivision of the Metropolitan Police. Duggan took possession of a BBM Bruni Model 92 handgun (a blank-firing replica of a Beretta 92 converted to fire live rounds), fifteen minutes before he was shot, from Kevin Hutchinson-Foster; once again my sympathy is as much with Police in this instance as with his family, (any resemblance to the Broadwater Farm riots of 20 years earlier, where an unarmed 9 year old child was accidentally shot during heavy handed Policing is both strained and contrived.)

    I sometimes ask myself if perhaps we don’t too often have completely unrealistic expectations of both our Police and of our of politicians?

    But something has certainly gone very wrong, a particularly after the Blair era and his introduction of, “Collective Responsibility,” which in practice equates too easily with; no one is ever really responsible for anything now; not even when for example, perhaps as many as 1200 vulnerable, frail and elderly NHS patients, (probably, the number is disputed but the culture of abuse and neglect is not,) died prematurely in appalling circumstances due to neglect, mismanagement and a culture of abuse.

    But in a government where somebody like Steven Green, (whom many people regard as being little more than a successful gangster, and others like him,) was nonetheless still promoted to high office, (ministerial,) with all it’s privileges, despite the huge and well documented criminal activities of HSBC for which he was responsible the real problem here is obvious.

    I’d be far more impressed by your suggestion if it was prefixed with some clear guidelines about how we can first clean up parliament first and make our MPs a lot more honest.

    Once again; it’s don’t look at us, look at them; they’re all much worse than we are.

    The US regulators famously described the culture at HSBC, under Green, as being, “pervasively polluted,” and I have no doubt whatsoever that he was/is equally comfortable in what some commentators are calling the, “Westminster Sewer,” as he was at HSBC.

    As for the Environmental Protesters, (and I did my share of protesting and clashed with the Police, when I was younger,) they’re basically just a bunch of spoiled, overindulged, time wasting, middle class brats playing out, with too much time on their hands with whom I have very little patience.

    It’s troubling that Police don’t have better and more important things to do, but then they’re probably just as bad as each other ?

  2. The Law has no difficulty when it comes to prosecuting ‘the little man’ for relatively minor misdemeanours, coming down on them like a ton of bricks, so why on earth does it fail when it comes to such ginormous whoppers!?

    No, don’t tell me: it’s because of the establishment, “old boy network” and contacts, and sheer embarrassment that people in high positions should behave so abominably, often out of sheer greed. But unless this issue is addressed, people such as these will continue to behave badly, as there appears to be little or no deterrent, leading to believe that they’ll get away with it.

    Some, such as the cases of human error by members of the police force should be treated with leniency, with a view to investigating what went wrong and how to avoid similar errors in future. Provided, of course, that these errors are shown to be due to incompetence rather than recklessness. Also, it’s not only the officers on the ground who should be held responsible, but the more senior officers who placed them in difficult situations without ascertaining that they have the appropriate training and backup to deal with the situation. Cuts in the police force have made this more difficult though.

    I think I read somewhere that the UK has more laws on it’s books than most other countries, as they have been accumulating for centuries and have rarely been repealed. So there must be plenty of laws that could be brought out of the archives to deal with many of these offences. Our legal system is supposed to be the best in the world, so why isn’t it used to tackle such cases?

  3. As for, “putting things right?”

    I can still remember sitting watching the UK election (which for once I hadn’t been following,) on television in the basement of an Irish Bar in Prague.

    At that point in time the Czech Republic was a lively and interesting place to visit; with considerable opportunity, (or it seemed that way to me, talking to the various ex pats that I met, who were living there at that time,) and after Thatcher and Major and what they’d done to the UK, (and for personal reason’s as well,) I was seriously considering leaving the UK either for good or staying there for an extended period.

    But then some guy that I’d never heard of before called Blair got elected, I didn’t know anything about him except that he was a socialist, (or in retrospect that he claimed to be one,) which was good enough for me; so after traveling for a while longer I came home again.

    I firmly believed that now we’d finally got a Labor government back in again, (at last,) we would start to, as you say, “put thing right.”

    It was an understandable mistake; but nothing could actually have been further from the truth.

  4. General Assistant – new

    Vacancy posted: 1 day ago

    Sainsburys 1,232 reviews, (applications ?) – Oldham

    This could involve everything from assisting customers with their inquiries and maintaining an uncluttered environment to replenishing stock and supporting…

  5. Stacking shelves at your local charitys salvation army mind cancer any one of them taking slaves under the guise of back to work oh we gone back in time and you can get sanctioned through not turning up hello this is mind our little slave didn’t show up jcp ok thats a sanction then mind words we dont sanction people then why phone then
    jobs are plenty at your local jcp you see you get to volunteer for em

  6. Are we asking to much of our police you see they were for that walkabout looking arounding looking for criminals or anything out of place now like the yanks we giving em weapons from the military strange when they there to protect but isnt there a army for this not the police but using any body who are in control of them jsnt the way forward but then sweeping it under the carpets is the way better if those crying foul should with help get to look in then we now

  7. I already do a bit of volunteer work, (“voluntarily,) through Oldham Voluntary Action, it’s good exercise and occasionally useful, but it isn’t really that rewarding or all that it’s sometimes cracked up to be and there isn’t actually that much of it anyway.

    As you rightly say attitude of the charity bosses and managers can sometimes stinks to high heaven, I was co-opted to helping rearrange some planters at Crossbank House last year, which I didn’t mind until the very last day when we’d finished all the work and the charity and NHS crew turned to have their photo taken with residents and immediately started throwing weight about.

    Mind also turned up a some allotments that NHS are running in Alexandra park that I’d been doing some work on and once again their arrogance and rudeness towards; the little people was quite offensive.

    Not a fan.

    But I did do some useful work repairing the stone terracing at Oldham Rugby Club in Bardsley and the attitude of their groundsman who appreciated, understood and valued the work I, (and a couple of other people,) were for him doing couldn’t have been more different.

  8. Well Mr Meacher, if Parliamentarians paid proper attention to means already extant to deal with this rampant criminality, such as Grand Juries, among other measures in force now for centuries. Measures rendering many fines, laws, seizures, GovCorp actions, taxes, completely unlawful AND illegal, we might just roll backwards this old, old, corruption and criminality.


    Menezes? Like Germanwings? A message? Brazil was courting Russia. Germany is going off message re the Ukraine/Russia WW3 agenda. So? as I say. A warning?

    Sir Ian Blair. A praetorian Guard GovCorp sock puppet.

    The decision to shoot Menezes was taken by a Common Purpose graduate named Cressida Dick. Now promoted on the back of her performance?

    As for terrorism, and the sham war on terror Watch Mr Hills exraordinary video “Ripple Effect”. Any lingering doubts about 7/7 being a state inspired and contrived false flag will disappear.

    Things must change. But they must be changed intelligently closing the door on corporate control of brit administration for good.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *