Today's op-ed piece in the Daily Telegraph is by Peter Oborne who, to all intents and purposes, would appear to have ended his 'love-in' with David Cameron. Writing about the stench of deceit and corruption once again beginning to permeate Parliament, he cites the cases of Nadine Dorries, Bill Wiggins and Phil Woolas - and states:
"There is a common thread to these stories. All three cases show that lying and cheating are still regarded as acceptable conduct by the British Political Class. Our MPs continue to regard themselves as somehow beyond the basic morality that applies to their fellow citizens. I used to believe that this arrogant and dishonest approach to politics was peculiar to New Labour. Now it looks like common practice for all parties."
Earlier in his article, discussing when he started work in the parliamentary press gallery, Oborne also writes:
"What struck me hard, however, was the realisation that ministers and government spokesmen were systematically and deliberately making false statements – lying – on the record in Parliament and to the press."
It would appear that the oft-repeated, plaintive, cry of the British electorate that 'it doesn't matter who you vote for, nothing changes' is most certainly true. Over recent decades, if not before, the British public have been lied to by our politicians - from which practice, no doubt, Dorries borrowed her defence of '70% fiction and 30% fact' - and today this political lying seems to be gathering pace.
Oborne may complain about the deceit of politicians on the question of expenses, but it is obvious to all that the entire political system has the stench of deceit and corruption. These last two defects in character are not just relevant to MP's financial matters, but to how 'government' operates in order to achieve its own ends. One has only to witness the time allowed for debate on the hunting ban (four hours, I seem to recall) when compared to a debate of national importance, that of European Union Economic Governance (one and a half hours). Witness also how time in which the 'Referendum Lock Bill' can be considered in committee is being 'truncated'.
Recalling the exploits of Fawkes and Cromwell, one can only hope that next time we do the job properly!