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I can’t even – politicalbetting.com

SystemSystem Posts: 8,489
edited January 29 in General
I can’t even – politicalbetting.com

Nadhim Zahawi's statement. Whether it was full blown illegal tax evasion or "careless" tax avoidance as he prefers, the facts are: 1. Zahawi hadn't paid tax that HMRC ruled was long owed, 2. while he was Chancellor, and 3. having tried to angrily dismiss it as a smear. Not great. pic.twitter.com/UWZISPCiGH

Read the full story here

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Comments

  • old_labourold_labour Posts: 3,238
    Am I first?
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 17,949
    Zawahi's tax affairs, and now the Sunday Times story about the BBC job for Boris's loan fixer, suggest it might be time for Labour to replay the Tory sleaze attacks from the 1990s.
  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 32,813
    Anyway, if anyone wants a little chortle on this cold Sunday morning, the YouTube channel 'Pitch Meetings' dissects some films and TV series. It's super easy, barely an inconvenience...

    https://www.youtube.com/@PitchMeetings
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 43,682
    Everything in the lead is sadly so credible, except for the bit about Starmer destroying Sunak at PMQs.
  • TazTaz Posts: 6,594
    More classified documents found in Biden’s home. Going back to his time as VP.

    This could cause him a few problems.

    https://news.sky.com/story/joe-biden-white-house-says-six-more-classified-documents-found-in-search-of-us-presidents-home-12792511
  • felixfelix Posts: 14,501
    I see the Coronation will feature our glorious NHS (presumably if they're not on strike), refugees and LBGTQ. How original and inclusive. Yawn!
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 16,322

    Johnson's corruption and debasement of the British political system is breathtaking.

    That he's even mentioned as making a possible return at some point speaks volumes about the state we are in. The bloke should be in a cell before he gets within a million miles of being in Number 10.

    As for Sharp and Zahawi, why the actual f*** haven't the pair of them resigned, and why hasn't Sunak himself forced their hands? It is utterly ludicrous.

    Sunak a huge disappointment, the others I never expected to be anything but dodgy.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,825

    Johnson's corruption and debasement of the British political system is breathtaking.

    That he's even mentioned as making a possible return at some point speaks volumes about the state we are in. The bloke should be in a cell before he gets within a million miles of being in Number 10.

    As for Sharp and Zahawi, why the actual f*** haven't the pair of them resigned, and why hasn't Sunak himself forced their hands? It is utterly ludicrous.

    Not just Johnson's corruption. This is a kleptocracy.
  • The thing that gets me about Johnson is this:

    He will have been earning a 'decent' salary all his adult life. As a journalist; as an MP, as a TV pundit, as MoL, and as PM. Not mahoosive amounts, but good, solid money.

    True, he has a string of children, but even then he must be able to live his life within his income? If he cannot, how the heck do the rest of us manage?

    We're all just the little people, the Stooges as Johnson put it in a different context. To the extent we exist at all, it's to be the extras in "Boris: My Brilliant Life".

    As for Sunak and Zahawi, it looks like they've got the same value set as Big Dog. How could they not, given that they were among his backers in 2019, and later on in his government? Rules are for losers and if the little people want them out, they'll have to wait until 2024. Maybe later if they want a final Christmas in office.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 29,264

    As for Boris, is there really anybody left who thinks he is other than pond life?

    Stanley
  • The thing that gets me about Johnson is this:

    He will have been earning a 'decent' salary all his adult life. As a journalist; as an MP, as a TV pundit, as MoL, and as PM. Not mahoosive amounts, but good, solid money.

    True, he has a string of children, but even then he must be able to live his life within his income? If he cannot, how the heck do the rest of us manage?

    Nearly everyone assumes his constant begging means he is poor. Given his character, I do not understand this, I would not be at all surprised if he has £10m in the bank and simply prefers to find someone else to pay for him.
    Micawber principle. (First or Second, I don't know.)

    Income greater than expenditure equals happiness, income less than expenditure equals misery.

    Most of us work out how to live within our means, or at least not too far out of them. For whatever reason, BoJo has chosen a lifestyle where his spending exceeds his income, no matter how massive that income is.
  • TazTaz Posts: 6,594
    felix said:

    I see the Coronation will feature our glorious NHS (presumably if they're not on strike), refugees and LBGTQ. How original and inclusive. Yawn!

    Is Danny Boyle producing it ?
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 43,682
    felix said:

    I see the Coronation will feature our glorious NHS (presumably if they're not on strike), refugees and LBGTQ. How original and inclusive. Yawn!

    You are Aidan Burley, and I claim my £5….
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 5,759
    I remember wondering at the time what made Richard Sharp a suitable appointment as BBC Chair. An Oxford-educated banker, who worked for J P Morgan and Goldman Sachs, has acted as an adviser to Johnson and Sunak, and was a large donor to the Conservative Party. Not much evidence that he had his finger on the pulse of the cultural life of the nation.

    Now I know. He should, of course, resign. But he won't.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,825
    felix said:

    I see the Coronation will feature our glorious NHS (presumably if they're not on strike), refugees and LBGTQ. How original and inclusive. Yawn!

    Our management are canvassing to see who wants to work normally, so we can try to make progress on our waiting list. Not sure how many takers there will be.
  • HeathenerHeathener Posts: 4,052
    The fact that people like @TSE are prepared to call this out for what it is, boldly, clearly, decisively means that the Conservative Party WILL some day resurrect itself.

    Well done @TSE

    For the large blob (Charles Moore's favourite word for the rest of the world) of tories who are still trying to justify these antics, it's going to be a long period in the wilderness.
  • Scott_xP said:

    As for Boris, is there really anybody left who thinks he is other than pond life?

    Stanley
    Not if the legend is true.

    He was allegedly drinking in a pub one day when a passer-by told him his Boris was a little shit. He replied 'I know' and carried on drinking.
  • Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 10,792
    Sunday Morning Challenge: eat a raw egg every time James Stupidly says 'Err...' to Sophy R.
  • Scott_xP said:

    As for Boris, is there really anybody left who thinks he is other than pond life?

    Stanley
    Not if the legend is true.

    He was allegedly drinking in a pub one day when a passer-by told him his Boris was a little shit. He replied 'I know' and carried on drinking.
    If I knew I was responsible for spawning BoJo, I'd probably keep on drinking, too.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 29,264
    @KevinASchofield: Rather unfortunate phrasing by James Cleverly on Richard Sharp, the Tory donor who became BBC chairman after helpin… https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1617079805580832768
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 59,869
    Good morning, everyone.

    Mr. Observer, the situation now is not great. However, pretending that dubious things have not occurred in the recent past is misleading. Consider the weapons of mass destruction. Or Brown reneging upon a referendum promise in a manifesto.

    Personal greed and self-enrichment appears to be the sin of the incumbents, whereas the (in-office) vices of yesteryear seem to be more about misleading the electorate to the detriment of the nation and trust in politics (though there was the Ecclestone million too, of course). Is Zahawai's tax situation worse for the nation than Brown's insane carrier contract that funnelled public money into certain constituencies and made it cheaper to build two carriers than one (cancelling one of the two being so prohibitively expensive)?
  • Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 10,792

    Good morning, everyone.

    Mr. Observer, the situation now is not great. However, pretending that dubious things have not occurred in the recent past is misleading. Consider the weapons of mass destruction. Or Brown reneging upon a referendum promise in a manifesto.

    Personal greed and self-enrichment appears to be the sin of the incumbents, whereas the (in-office) vices of yesteryear seem to be more about misleading the electorate to the detriment of the nation and trust in politics (though there was the Ecclestone million too, of course). Is Zahawai's tax situation worse for the nation than Brown's insane carrier contract that funnelled public money into certain constituencies and made it cheaper to build two carriers than one (cancelling one of the two being so prohibitively expensive)?

    Thank you for your service. 🫡
  • BenpointerBenpointer Posts: 24,682

    Good morning, everyone.

    Mr. Observer, the situation now is not great. However, pretending that dubious things have not occurred in the recent past is misleading. Consider the weapons of mass destruction. Or Brown reneging upon a referendum promise in a manifesto.

    Personal greed and self-enrichment appears to be the sin of the incumbents, whereas the (in-office) vices of yesteryear seem to be more about misleading the electorate to the detriment of the nation and trust in politics (though there was the Ecclestone million too, of course). Is Zahawai's tax situation worse for the nation than Brown's insane carrier contract that funnelled public money into certain constituencies and made it cheaper to build two carriers than one (cancelling one of the two being so prohibitively expensive)?

    Haha. Nice try.
  • OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 11,036

    Scott_xP said:

    As for Boris, is there really anybody left who thinks he is other than pond life?

    Stanley
    Not if the legend is true.

    He was allegedly drinking in a pub one day when a passer-by told him his Boris was a little shit. He replied 'I know' and carried on drinking.
    That's actually really sad.
  • BenpointerBenpointer Posts: 24,682
    Tbf these scandals are coming so quickly you have to wonder if the Tories are trying to use each one as a dead cat for the previous one.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 19,932
    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?
  • dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 25,298
    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    They are incompetent too.
  • BenpointerBenpointer Posts: 24,682
    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    Struck in a vice or mired in vice?
  • Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    A decade or so in the wilderness is the usual procedure, I believe.

    The next Conservative PM might not even be an MP yet.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 49,020
    felix said:

    I see the Coronation will feature our glorious NHS (presumably if they're not on strike), refugees and LBGTQ. How original and inclusive. Yawn!

    Maybe King Charles III will take the knee before he gets to the orb and sceptre.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 59,869
    Mr. Jonathan, aye, there's no upside. On the personal level it's bad news, governance is incompetent in many areas, and there's not exactly a benign environment generally either. Miracle required for the Conservatives to win next time.

    Mr. Pointer, I think it's useful to remember things that happened more than a short time ago. It's why history is useful as well as interesting.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,825
    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    They are just looting the public purse while they can. It is the arrogance of power where they think they can do anything.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 49,020
    Dura_Ace said:



    As for Sharp and Zahawi, why the actual f*** haven't the pair of them resigned, and why hasn't Sunak himself forced their hands? It is utterly ludicrous.

    This is pure pre 2016 thinking. There is a newer and much lower standard for this sort of corruption now.
    Perhaps you failed to notice how many MPs (many Labour) were prosecuted for fraud in the wake of the expenses scandal.
  • dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 25,298
    You do wonder if the persistent rumours that Dacre was in the running was nothing more than a bait and switch.
  • TimSTimS Posts: 3,664
    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    Ah, I remember fondly the dead cat pandemic of 2021 when each new Boris / Cummings misadventure was held to be a dead cat for the last.
  • dixiedean said:

    You do wonder if the persistent rumours that Dacre was in the running was nothing more than a bait and switch.

    That was Ofcom, not BBC.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 49,020

    Good morning, everyone.

    Mr. Observer, the situation now is not great. However, pretending that dubious things have not occurred in the recent past is misleading. Consider the weapons of mass destruction. Or Brown reneging upon a referendum promise in a manifesto.

    Personal greed and self-enrichment appears to be the sin of the incumbents, whereas the (in-office) vices of yesteryear seem to be more about misleading the electorate to the detriment of the nation and trust in politics (though there was the Ecclestone million too, of course). Is Zahawai's tax situation worse for the nation than Brown's insane carrier contract that funnelled public money into certain constituencies and made it cheaper to build two carriers than one (cancelling one of the two being so prohibitively expensive)?

    Although I'm quite glad for that contract- because we got two carriers allowing us to have a continuous at sea presence, or at least we would if we could crew and escort them properly.

    Without it Osborne would have scrapped at least one and possibly both and gone for just a helicopter carrier.
  • dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 25,298

    dixiedean said:

    You do wonder if the persistent rumours that Dacre was in the running was nothing more than a bait and switch.

    That was Ofcom, not BBC.
    Yes. It was Charles Moore for the Beeb.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 29,308

    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    A decade or so in the wilderness is the usual procedure, I believe.

    The next Conservative PM might not even be an MP yet.
    If this goes on, he or she might not even have been born!
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 29,264

    Although I'm quite glad for that contract- because we got two carriers allowing us to have a continuous at sea presence, or at least we would if we could crew and escort them properly.

    Without it Osborne would have scrapped at least one and possibly both and gone for just a helicopter carrier.

    And one of them hadn't spent more days under repair than at sea
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,825
    dixiedean said:

    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    They are incompetent too.
    Yes, Sunak is the Lampard of politics. Good player, hopless manager.
  • OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 11,036
    Does this overpowering stench of corruption bring forward the next GE? It feels like it should, but logically I don't really see the mechanism.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 19,932
    If Sunak’s mission is to maximise the Tory result at the general election and save seats, he actually might be well advised to go early.

    The more we see of this government, the worse it gets.
  • dixiedean said:

    dixiedean said:

    You do wonder if the persistent rumours that Dacre was in the running was nothing more than a bait and switch.

    That was Ofcom, not BBC.
    Yes. It was Charles Moore for the Beeb.
    Moore has been pretty critical of Johnson. That was his mistake - if only he'd arranged a loan for the bloke.
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 5,759
    dixiedean said:

    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    They are incompetent too.
    Yes, they can't even manage to be competently corrupt.
  • Sean_FSean_F Posts: 32,308
    Although I’m more sympathetic than most to Zahawi’s tax affairs (a 30% penalty is not imposed for dishonesty) the overall level of sleaze in government is sickening.
  • SouthamObserverSouthamObserver Posts: 37,544
    Anyone who thinks the BBC chairman is going to resign has been asleep for the last four years.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,875
    If you take Zahawi at his word (big if) then what he was claiming was that his father had "founder shares" in Yougov and was therefore entitled to a substantial cut of the sale proceeds when the business was sold. He would also have had an entitlement to Entrepreneurs Relief so he would only have had to pay 10% on that gain.

    Quite clearly the matter was not adequately recorded, vouched or disclosed and HMRC have taken the view that all of the gain on sale was subject to tax by Zahawi who had either exhausted his life time allowance or was, in some other way not eligible (there may have been a problem since his own interest was not particularly clearly disclosed).

    According to him, HMRC have compromised by accepting that his father was entitled to some of the sale proceeds but not as much as claimed, resulting in him having an additional liability and a penalty (allegedly over £1m) for late accounting.

    There is an element of this that is simply everyday entrepreneurial folk. The astonishing, and genuinely jaw dropping aspect of this is (a) that Boris appointed him Chancellor when this dispute was going on and (b) he was delusional enough to accept. It is very hard to work out what they were thinking.
  • Pro_RataPro_Rata Posts: 3,962

    The thing that gets me about Johnson is this:

    He will have been earning a 'decent' salary all his adult life. As a journalist; as an MP, as a TV pundit, as MoL, and as PM. Not mahoosive amounts, but good, solid money.

    True, he has a string of children, but even then he must be able to live his life within his income? If he cannot, how the heck do the rest of us manage?

    Perhaps Boris should take up a role as a parliamentary assistant to Lee Anderson.

    Then he'll definitely have enough to live on.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,825
    edited January 22
    What is it about Zahawi that makes him essential to this government? Or is it just that sacking him for tax dodging and lying raises the bar and imperils a lot of other ministers?
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 29,264
    Sean_F said:

    Although I’m more sympathetic than most to Zahawi’s tax affairs (a 30% penalty is not imposed for dishonesty) the overall level of sleaze in government is sickening.

    DavidL said:

    If you take Zahawi at his word (big if) then what he was claiming was that his father had "founder shares" in Yougov and was therefore entitled to a substantial cut of the sale proceeds when the business was sold. He would also have had an entitlement to Entrepreneurs Relief so he would only have had to pay 10% on that gain.

    Quite clearly the matter was not adequately recorded, vouched or disclosed and HMRC have taken the view that all of the gain on sale was subject to tax by Zahawi who had either exhausted his life time allowance or was, in some other way not eligible (there may have been a problem since his own interest was not particularly clearly disclosed).

    According to him, HMRC have compromised by accepting that his father was entitled to some of the sale proceeds but not as much as claimed, resulting in him having an additional liability and a penalty (allegedly over £1m) for late accounting.

    There is an element of this that is simply everyday entrepreneurial folk. The astonishing, and genuinely jaw dropping aspect of this is (a) that Boris appointed him Chancellor when this dispute was going on and (b) he was delusional enough to accept. It is very hard to work out what they were thinking.

    Read the whole sordid tale here

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/when-i-said-nadhim-zahawi-owed-the-taxman-he-set-his-lawyers-on-me-now-hes-handed-over-millions-qjpqrhtnj
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,356
    It wasn't sleaze which did for the Tories in 1997, it was Blair and New Labour and Black Wednesday and the fact they had been in too long.

    'Sleaze' might add to the general impression a tired government needs to go but it rarely switches the votes of any voters beyond those which have already gone anyway.

    It certainly won't produce an 'extinction level' event for the Tories. That would only be if Farage's RefUK overtook them as the main party of the right
  • TheValiantTheValiant Posts: 1,415

    Anyway, if anyone wants a little chortle on this cold Sunday morning, the YouTube channel 'Pitch Meetings' dissects some films and TV series. It's super easy, barely an inconvenience...

    https://www.youtube.com/@PitchMeetings

    I don't know.......
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,356
    edited January 22
    felix said:

    I see the Coronation will feature our glorious NHS (presumably if they're not on strike), refugees and LBGTQ. How original and inclusive. Yawn!

    No, the Coronation itself on the Saturday won't, only the Coronation Concert on the Sunday (even if the latter could be written by Starmer Labour)
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 19,932
    edited January 22
    Theresa May possibly needs to return to save the Tories

    She was neither an ideological nut job, a narcissist, a prefect playing PM nor a technocrat on the take.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,875
    Scott_xP said:

    Sean_F said:

    Although I’m more sympathetic than most to Zahawi’s tax affairs (a 30% penalty is not imposed for dishonesty) the overall level of sleaze in government is sickening.

    DavidL said:

    If you take Zahawi at his word (big if) then what he was claiming was that his father had "founder shares" in Yougov and was therefore entitled to a substantial cut of the sale proceeds when the business was sold. He would also have had an entitlement to Entrepreneurs Relief so he would only have had to pay 10% on that gain.

    Quite clearly the matter was not adequately recorded, vouched or disclosed and HMRC have taken the view that all of the gain on sale was subject to tax by Zahawi who had either exhausted his life time allowance or was, in some other way not eligible (there may have been a problem since his own interest was not particularly clearly disclosed).

    According to him, HMRC have compromised by accepting that his father was entitled to some of the sale proceeds but not as much as claimed, resulting in him having an additional liability and a penalty (allegedly over £1m) for late accounting.

    There is an element of this that is simply everyday entrepreneurial folk. The astonishing, and genuinely jaw dropping aspect of this is (a) that Boris appointed him Chancellor when this dispute was going on and (b) he was delusional enough to accept. It is very hard to work out what they were thinking.

    Read the whole sordid tale here

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/when-i-said-nadhim-zahawi-owed-the-taxman-he-set-his-lawyers-on-me-now-hes-handed-over-millions-qjpqrhtnj
    I can't but we will have the hard copy later.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 82,567
    edited January 22
    Zahawi is left with claiming incompetence not malice, but either means he should not hold a senior position, even the sinecure from being party chair. 'Its too complicated' is not an excuse for someone who held one of the most powerful offices in the land.

    The Boris stuff is as people note no surprise, but the others involved in this particular shadiness makes it worse. Appearance of impropriety has always been a no no as much as actual impropriety, and they don't care about either.

    On why Sunak doesn't act well for one there's every reason to assume he thinks none of them have done wrong, but also his position is too weak. There's been no recovery so he cannot upset the faction of his party who would be upset at punishing incompetence and corruption. Which I guess is a large part of it?
  • kjhkjh Posts: 8,345
    As car crashes go Cleverly this morning is in a motorway pile up.
  • CiceroCicero Posts: 1,526
    Whom the Gods would destroy, they first make mad.

    The pathetic attempts to defend the indefensible -I´m looking at you, Morris Dancer- just infuriate the punters even further. This is not the normal political games, this truly is out-and-out corruption.

    I hold no brief for Rishi Sunak, but it would take a special kind of idiot to believe that the endemic crisis of the Conservatives can be simply solved by challenging/replacing the Tory leader. Indeed, I think that any attempt to do so would be the last straw for many Conservative supporters.

    Nevertheless, this is not mere sleaze, this is corruption. Unless fairly decisive action is taken, there will be legal consequences and they will be far more damaging than a few headlines. The chairman of the Conservative party has admitted wrong doing in his tax affairs, however he issued legal threats to the Independent to attempt to stop their legitimate reporting of this. It is the attempt to cover up that reveals the moral turpitude of the man. He simply cannot continue. The careful phraseology of the former Chancellor´s statement implies that other issues may have been under consideration, if so, then these must now be disclosed.

    Its a whole can of worms, but Sunak has to face it head on, or else he will be swept away by a tide of stupidity that will not merely defeat the Conservatives, but quite possibly, obliterate them.
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,356
    Jonathan said:

    Theresa May possibly needs to return to save the Tories

    She was neither an ideological nut job, a narcissist, a prefect playing PM nor a technocrat on the take.

    And she polled no better than Sunak is now when she resigned in late Spring 2019
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,875
    Foxy said:

    What is it about Zahawi that makes him essential to this government? Or is it just that sacking him for tax dodging and lying raises the bar and imperils a lot of other ministers?

    In fairness, he seems to have done a very competent job as Vaccines Minister. Competence is such a rare trait these days you can understand why they are reluctant to let it go.
  • BenpointerBenpointer Posts: 24,682
    HYUFD said:

    Jonathan said:

    Theresa May possibly needs to return to save the Tories

    She was neither an ideological nut job, a narcissist, a prefect playing PM nor a technocrat on the take.

    And she polled no better than Sunak is now when she resigned in late Spring 2019
    What's more important HYUFD, polls or morality?
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 82,567

    dixiedean said:

    dixiedean said:

    You do wonder if the persistent rumours that Dacre was in the running was nothing more than a bait and switch.

    That was Ofcom, not BBC.
    Yes. It was Charles Moore for the Beeb.
    Moore has been pretty critical of Johnson. That was his mistake - if only he'd arranged a loan for the bloke.
    Didn't he precipitate the beginning of the end by convincing Boris to try to save Paterson? So he got his revenge.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 29,264
    DavidL said:

    Foxy said:

    What is it about Zahawi that makes him essential to this government? Or is it just that sacking him for tax dodging and lying raises the bar and imperils a lot of other ministers?

    In fairness, he seems to have done a very competent job as Vaccines Minister. Competence is such a rare trait these days you can understand why they are reluctant to let it go.
    The suspicion is he didn't do anything, and therefore didn't fuck it up.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 19,932
    HYUFD said:

    Jonathan said:

    Theresa May possibly needs to return to save the Tories

    She was neither an ideological nut job, a narcissist, a prefect playing PM nor a technocrat on the take.

    And she polled no better than Sunak is now when she resigned in late Spring 2019
    She is better than Sunak.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 29,264
    @BloombergUK: A spokesperson for Boris Johnson dismissed the report as “rubbish” https://t.co/eNQyJTop99
  • Does this overpowering stench of corruption bring forward the next GE? It feels like it should, but logically I don't really see the mechanism.

    It needs about 40 Conservative MPs willing to commit career suicide because they can't justify this to their consciences any more. And that's really hard to see.

    So instead, we get Micawber Principle Two/One, the one about hanging on because Something Will Turn Up.
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,356
    edited January 22

    HYUFD said:

    Jonathan said:

    Theresa May possibly needs to return to save the Tories

    She was neither an ideological nut job, a narcissist, a prefect playing PM nor a technocrat on the take.

    And she polled no better than Sunak is now when she resigned in late Spring 2019
    What's more important HYUFD, polls or morality?
    Sunak is perfectly moral too as far as I can see on most things. May backs Sunak staying PM anyway.

    Indeed today's story boosts the PM more and hits any chance of a Boris comeback.

    Sunak can sack Zahawi, a former leadership rival, this week if needed
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 29,264
    @nickeardleybbc: Four days after PM claimed Nadhim Zahawi had answered tax qs in full, ministers still unable to say if penalty was… https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1617090156003037184
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 59,869
    Mr. Cicero, I'm not defending the indefensible.

    The combination of incompetence and, to be polite, dubious means of self-enrichment is not acceptable and is leading to well-deserved bad headlines. What I'm saying is that claiming this is somehow entirely new or 'o tempora, o mores' when the previous (if we don't count the Coalition) administration broke manifesto commitments and lead us into war on a false prospectus is to overegg the current situation. The NHS database blew billions for nothing. Political incompetence should be highlighted by the media but the idea it's some sort of new thing or unique and special to the current lot is fiction.
  • kjhkjh Posts: 8,345
    HYUFD said:

    It wasn't sleaze which did for the Tories in 1997, it was Blair and New Labour and Black Wednesday and the fact they had been in too long.

    'Sleaze' might add to the general impression a tired government needs to go but it rarely switches the votes of any voters beyond those which have already gone anyway.

    It certainly won't produce an 'extinction level' event for the Tories. That would only be if Farage's RefUK overtook them as the main party of the right

    All what you say is true, but sleaze was also a significant factor. Wikipedia has its own page on the Back to Basics campaign and the implosion of that from 92 to 97.
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 35,876
    edited January 22

    Johnson's corruption and debasement of the British political system is breathtaking.

    That he's even mentioned as making a possible return at some point speaks volumes about the state we are in. The bloke should be in a cell before he gets within a million miles of being in Number 10.

    As for Sharp and Zahawi, why the actual f*** haven't the pair of them resigned, and why hasn't Sunak himself forced their hands? It is utterly ludicrous.

    The ‘Britain Trump’ stuff used to be good for winding up the fawning Johnsonites (who are a bit thin on the ground nowadays) but I now think it’s a pretty fair analogy. Of course things are always on a reduced and more pallid scale in the UK compared to the US, but just think of the opportunities for Boris if he’d made his career in the land of his birth..
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 5,759
    Outside Downing Street, on 25 October 2022, Sunak's address to the nation as the new Prime Minister included the immortal line:

    This government will have integrity, professionalism and accountability at every level.

    How's that going, Rishi?
  • franklynfranklyn Posts: 274
    We still haven't heard the full story on Zahawi.

    I have long-standing connections with Gibraltar and visit regularly for work.
    The Government of Gibraltar is meticulous about not upsetting the UK tax authorities and upholding the reputation of the services offered there. Anyone from the UK wanting to do any financial dealings there is told explicitly that they must ensure that they must disclose all details to HMRC in the UK. It is impossible for Zahawi and his advisors not to have known this.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 82,567
    TimS said:

    Step back and you realise just how absurd it is that a donor to or member of a political party could ever be permitted to be chairman of a supposedly impartial public service broadcaster.

    If you donate to a political party over, say, £1000, I say that should rule you out of that position, any honour, a peerage, and any other prominent public position in the government gift, for a full parliamentary term at least.

    No one has to donate to a party, and if they are interested in serving in a public role then they can prioritise that over trying to influence a party with cash.
  • SouthamObserverSouthamObserver Posts: 37,544
    kle4 said:

    Zahawi is left with claiming incompetence not malice, but either means he should not hold a senior position, even the sinecure from being party chair. 'Its too complicated' is not an excuse for someone who held one of the most powerful offices in the land.

    The Boris stuff is as people note no surprise, but the others involved in this particular shadiness makes it worse. Appearance of impropriety has always been a no no as much as actual impropriety, and they don't care about either.

    On why Sunak doesn't act well for one there's every reason to assume he thinks none of them have done wrong, but also his position is too weak. There's been no recovery so he cannot upset the faction of his party who would be upset at punishing incompetence and corruption. Which I guess is a large part of it?

    Sunak is not a bad man, but he is politically weak and also highly inexperienced. The overall demands of the PM job at this time, under these circumstances, are too big for him and do not suit his skillset. He is a project manager not a leader.

  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 19,932
    edited January 22
    Which is the best flavour of the Tory party?

    Upper class twits
    Dull Management of decline
    Britain Trump populists
    Right wing, crash the economy in a fortnight, ideological zealots.
    Corrupt technocrats

    It’s a hard one.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,825
    edited January 22

    Mr. Cicero, I'm not defending the indefensible.

    The combination of incompetence and, to be polite, dubious means of self-enrichment is not acceptable and is leading to well-deserved bad headlines. What I'm saying is that claiming this is somehow entirely new or 'o tempora, o mores' when the previous (if we don't count the Coalition) administration broke manifesto commitments and lead us into war on a false prospectus is to overegg the current situation. The NHS database blew billions for nothing. Political incompetence should be highlighted by the media but the idea it's some sort of new thing or unique and special to the current lot is fiction.

    There is a difference between incompetence (not unique to either present or politics) and rampant corruption for the purpose of personal enrichment. We are way past mere incompetence with this government.
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,356
    kjh said:

    HYUFD said:

    It wasn't sleaze which did for the Tories in 1997, it was Blair and New Labour and Black Wednesday and the fact they had been in too long.

    'Sleaze' might add to the general impression a tired government needs to go but it rarely switches the votes of any voters beyond those which have already gone anyway.

    It certainly won't produce an 'extinction level' event for the Tories. That would only be if Farage's RefUK overtook them as the main party of the right

    All what you say is true, but sleaze was also a significant factor. Wikipedia has its own page on the Back to Basics campaign and the implosion of that from 92 to 97.
    In terms of polling the major shifts from 92 to 97 were Black Wednesday and the election of Blair as Labour leader.

    Bar Tatton and maybe Thanet South I doubt 'sleaze' changed the result in a single seat in 1997 otherwise
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 17,949
    Scott_xP said:

    Although I'm quite glad for that contract- because we got two carriers allowing us to have a continuous at sea presence, or at least we would if we could crew and escort them properly.

    Without it Osborne would have scrapped at least one and possibly both and gone for just a helicopter carrier.

    And one of them hadn't spent more days under repair than at sea
    It saves a fortune in petrol and not having planes drop over the side because the Fleet Air Arm can't work a checklist.
  • TazTaz Posts: 6,594
    Foxy said:

    dixiedean said:

    Jonathan said:

    The Tory party really is in a bad way. It’s stuck in a vice. On the one hand seemingly corrupt technocrats. On the other side ideological right wing nutters. How on Earth does it get out of this trap?

    They are incompetent too.
    Yes, Sunak is the Lampard of politics. Good player, hopless manager.
    Lampard is doing just fine AFAIC.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 59,869
    Mr. Osberver, while I agree on Sunak, and he's underperformed compared to my hopes/expectations, he's still a cut above his two immediate predecessors. Which is a bit sad.
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 17,949

    kle4 said:

    Zahawi is left with claiming incompetence not malice, but either means he should not hold a senior position, even the sinecure from being party chair. 'Its too complicated' is not an excuse for someone who held one of the most powerful offices in the land.

    The Boris stuff is as people note no surprise, but the others involved in this particular shadiness makes it worse. Appearance of impropriety has always been a no no as much as actual impropriety, and they don't care about either.

    On why Sunak doesn't act well for one there's every reason to assume he thinks none of them have done wrong, but also his position is too weak. There's been no recovery so he cannot upset the faction of his party who would be upset at punishing incompetence and corruption. Which I guess is a large part of it?

    Sunak is not a bad man, but he is politically weak and also highly inexperienced. The overall demands of the PM job at this time, under these circumstances, are too big for him and do not suit his skillset. He is a project manager not a leader.

    Rishi is our worst Prime Minister ever, if judged by the narrow criterion of number of fixed penalty notices received.
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 5,759

    Mr. Cicero, I'm not defending the indefensible.

    The combination of incompetence and, to be polite, dubious means of self-enrichment is not acceptable and is leading to well-deserved bad headlines. What I'm saying is that claiming this is somehow entirely new or 'o tempora, o mores' when the previous (if we don't count the Coalition) administration broke manifesto commitments and lead us into war on a false prospectus is to overegg the current situation. The NHS database blew billions for nothing. Political incompetence should be highlighted by the media but the idea it's some sort of new thing or unique and special to the current lot is fiction.

    Of course incompetence isn't new. But what's different about the current lot is both the scale of it and, more importantly, the tendency for those involved to line their own pockets. The examples you give (NHS database, Iraq war) may have been dreadful, but in neither case was the motive anything to do with making money for the politicians involved. That's what's different.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 43,682
    The Sunday Rawnsley:

    [Brexiters] won’t want to be reminded of the sunny uplands shimmering with ripening fruits promised by Mr Rees-Mogg and the rest of the Brexit mob’s false prophets.

    You will remember [JRM’s] claim that the subs paid to the EU only had to be redirected to the NHS to transform it into a world-envied health service. Strike one. What we actually have is a collapsing NHS. Another of their boasts was that the UK would “take back control” of its borders. Strike two. Unmanaged migration is not falling, but rising. The most critical promise was that the economy would roar like a liberated lion just as soon as the UK was “unshackled” from the “sclerotic” EU. Strike three. The UK is the sick man of the G7, the only member with an economy that is still smaller than it was before the pandemic.

    Quitting has not been empowering, but enervating. Every credible study concludes that Brexit has introduced new impediments to prosperity while aggravating pre-existing problems.

    Even Brexiters know it looks ridiculous to point the finger at recalcitrant “Remoaners” when Brexiters have been running the government for nearly four years. So now they turn the accusation of sabotage on their own gang by blaming the Tories for messing it up by not doing it “properly”, whatever properly is supposed to be. Brexiters in denial can’t admit to themselves that a project founded in delusion, marinated in fantasy, riddled with contradictions and marketed with mendacities was never going to “work”.

    The Brexit headbangers apart, everyone at Westminster knows that we need to mitigate the egregious damage that has been inflicted on this country. The sad and cruel truth is that strategic blunders as colossal as Brexit can’t be corrected easily or swiftly. Some mistakes have to be paid for over many years. This, alas, is the UK’s fate. Not a golden age, but ages of regret.





  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,875

    DavidL said:

    If you take Zahawi at his word (big if) then what he was claiming was that his father had "founder shares" in Yougov and was therefore entitled to a substantial cut of the sale proceeds when the business was sold. He would also have had an entitlement to Entrepreneurs Relief so he would only have had to pay 10% on that gain.

    Quite clearly the matter was not adequately recorded, vouched or disclosed and HMRC have taken the view that all of the gain on sale was subject to tax by Zahawi who had either exhausted his life time allowance or was, in some other way not eligible (there may have been a problem since his own interest was not particularly clearly disclosed).

    According to him, HMRC have compromised by accepting that his father was entitled to some of the sale proceeds but not as much as claimed, resulting in him having an additional liability and a penalty (allegedly over £1m) for late accounting.

    There is an element of this that is simply everyday entrepreneurial folk. The astonishing, and genuinely jaw dropping aspect of this is (a) that Boris appointed him Chancellor when this dispute was going on and (b) he was delusional enough to accept. It is very hard to work out what they were thinking.

    Having been through a business sale and claimed entrepreneur’s relief, I cannot believe Zahawi’s accountants and lawyers did not give him a range of options to take, along with advice on potential outcomes. He is where he is because of decisions he actively took, not because he is the passive victim of carelessness.

    Exactly so, and if his father's interest was not adequately vouched or recorded he will have been warned about the risks of making a declaration on that basis and decided to proceed anyway.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 19,932

    kle4 said:

    Zahawi is left with claiming incompetence not malice, but either means he should not hold a senior position, even the sinecure from being party chair. 'Its too complicated' is not an excuse for someone who held one of the most powerful offices in the land.

    The Boris stuff is as people note no surprise, but the others involved in this particular shadiness makes it worse. Appearance of impropriety has always been a no no as much as actual impropriety, and they don't care about either.

    On why Sunak doesn't act well for one there's every reason to assume he thinks none of them have done wrong, but also his position is too weak. There's been no recovery so he cannot upset the faction of his party who would be upset at punishing incompetence and corruption. Which I guess is a large part of it?

    Sunak is not a bad man, but he is politically weak and also highly inexperienced. The overall demands of the PM job at this time, under these circumstances, are too big for him and do not suit his skillset. He is a project manager not a leader.

    Sunak was Boris’ yes man in the treasury and bragged about taking money away from deprived areas. Sunak is less nice than you give him credit for.
  • Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 10,792
    Labour must think they can take Zahawi's (highly polished) scalp this week. Sunak will want it handled before PMQ.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 82,567

    Mr. Cicero, I'm not defending the indefensible.

    The combination of incompetence and, to be polite, dubious means of self-enrichment is not acceptable and is leading to well-deserved bad headlines. What I'm saying is that claiming this is somehow entirely new or 'o tempora, o mores' when the previous (if we don't count the Coalition) administration broke manifesto commitments and lead us into war on a false prospectus is to overegg the current situation. The NHS database blew billions for nothing. Political incompetence should be highlighted by the media but the idea it's some sort of new thing or unique and special to the current lot is fiction.

    True, but that's cold comfort. People overestimating the uniquenessof the current incompetence and corruption is not exactly the most pressing problem. We won't be able to properly judge things in context until we get out of this quagmire anyway.
  • kjh said:

    HYUFD said:

    It wasn't sleaze which did for the Tories in 1997, it was Blair and New Labour and Black Wednesday and the fact they had been in too long.

    'Sleaze' might add to the general impression a tired government needs to go but it rarely switches the votes of any voters beyond those which have already gone anyway.

    It certainly won't produce an 'extinction level' event for the Tories. That would only be if Farage's RefUK overtook them as the main party of the right

    All what you say is true, but sleaze was also a significant factor. Wikipedia has its own page on the Back to Basics campaign and the implosion of that from 92 to 97.
    I agree with this. 1997 probably wasn't realistically winnable for the Conservatives, but sleaze turned it into a massacre.

    And that was with Major at the helm, and a problem with sleaze rather than full-frontal corruption.

    Even for those not convinced Blair would change the country for the better (and promises were pretty modest and cautious in many ways) there was a strong feeling the stables needed hosing down. That made a win a landslide.

    And it's hard, even for centre right posters here, not to conclude this administration is not so much a grubby stable as an open sewer at this point.
This discussion has been closed.