Friday, 30 March 2012

Are Tories genetically corrupt?

Despite hating Europe so much, the Tories seem to have a lot in common with their continental cousins. Particularly a propensity for corruption.

Over here we've had:
Jeffrey Archer
Jonathan Aitken
Neil Hamilton
Cash For Questions
Cash For Access
Lord Ashcroft
The Zinoviev Letter
Winston Churchill's oil bribes
Reginald Maudling
Andrew Mitchell
Shirley Porter's gerrymandering
Derek Conway
Liam Fox and Adam Werritty

And of course there's the whole bankrupting-the-taxpayer-and-cutting-public-services-to-bail-out-the-banksgate.

So it looks like British Tories and right-wingers in general (look at UKIP's record: a conveyor belt from the European Parliament to prison) are pretty keen bribe-hoovers. But let's spread the net wider, and ask this question: Does Toryism Lead Inevitably To Corruption?

The Mahon Tribunal revealed that the entire state had been suborned by bribery and corruption through the method of bribing and buying Fianna Fail politicians. The previous Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Bertie Ahern was judged to have taken bribes and lied to the enquiry. The party has been in government for most of the Republic's existence and essentially sold itself to business. They too managed to bankrupt the country.

Former president Chirac funded his party through a network of fake public sector jobs for party activists.
Righwing politicians jailed for arms-smuggling, while they accuse each other of secret bank accounts.
Sarkozy's been taking suitcases of (tax-evading) cash from France's richest woman, Liliane Bettencourt, the L'Oréal heiress.

The Christian Democrat (i.e. Tory) German President has just had to resign due to a corruption scandal.

The Austrian Tories (ÖVP) are in massive disarray as it turns out they're riddled with corruption, enriching themselves and their friends through bribery related to government contracts.

Their Tories have been taking massive bribes for contract and privatisation deals. The same goes for Croatia's HDZ (Croatian Democratic Union), while over in the Czech Republic, a businessman nicknamed Voldemort ran his own shadow government by buying up the Czech Tories, the Civic Democrats.

What makes Tories so open to sleaze? It's in their DNA. They believe in individual capitalism and enterprise. Sharp practice is simply individual entrepreneurialism. They also believe that financial success is a mark of spiritual and intellectual strength, so anyone with massive amounts of cash is automatically admirable. They believe that what's good for business is good for everyone, and they see government as a drag on achievement which should be subverted or captured for their own interests (hence Mitchell's tax scam and the al-Yamamah deal). Little wonder then that they're so susceptible to the charms of rich men filling their ears with seductive words and their pockets with cash. They're incapable of discrimination. When the world means little more to them than the circulation of cash, they'd be fools not to dip their hands in the river of corruption: it's ideologically natural.

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