Holding power to account is like wrestling with a greased pig


A letter a day to number 10. No 1,423

Thursday 05 May 2016.

Dear Mr Cameron,

Since 2010 your government has successfully branded every recipient of social security as a benefits scrounger. Iain Duncan Smith seemed to applaud the Sun in 2015 for inspiring blood boiling fury. Endorsing the promotion of hate, the Sun quotes Smith as saying, “What infuriates your readers – including me – is when somebody isn’t trying and living off the rest of us who are trying.” Feel the hate!

I don’t suppose that Smith would accept any causal link between the vilification of those in receipt of social security payments and the 41% increase in disability hate crime any more than he accepts any causal link between stopping benefits and claimant deaths.

Yet whilst disabled people are being hounded on the streets as frauds and shysters, those who promote such crimes, like Iain Duncan Smith and the Sun, are neither challenged nor prosecuted.

Frank Herbert observed in ‘God Emperor of Dune’ that, ‘the position of authority is the most prosperous criminal position available’.

The allegations of electoral fraud which have emerged over some of your party’s election expenses are astonishing if for no other reason than for something so serious, for which any ordinary person would have the police crawling all over them, the degree of inaction is incredible.

What we get are public denials whilst those accused are allowed to go about their business, including standing for elections, as usual. Such privilege does not exist for ordinary people. If nothing else, what channel 4 has revealed is that those accused have engaged in some very creative accounting practices which entirely throws into doubt whether they have obeyed either or both the ‘letter and the spirit of the law’.

I cannot recall a period in my lifetime when the problem of holding power to account has been such a public issue or accountability so flagrantly abused as it is now. Even the Telegraph has reported that wealth inequality is ruining Britain and wonders why we’re not talking about it, but inequality in power is of equal importance and what is astonishing about power is that so few can hold power over so many and don’t give a damn for the consequences. Holding power to account is like trying to wrestle with a greased pig and it is long overdue that pig was stuck and stopped.








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