Thursday, December 04, 2008

It's not that I don't care, honest....

To anyone who has come here this week hoping or expecting to find my thoughts on the Damian Green affair, or the Queen's Speech, or the suspension of Sharon Shoesmith, or the interest rate cut, or anything else for that matter, may I offer my apologies.

They were all subjects worthy of a blog post and, had I had more free time this week, I would certainly have done covered them.

That said, I am in one sense relieved that I didn't rush into print with my thoughts on the Green controversy. As a democrat, my initial instincts would obviously have been to defend the Tory frontbencher's right to leak confidential material, and to question the political wisdom of Gordon Brown's refusal to condemn the police action.

Now, I'm not so sure. Yes, Jacqui Smith should have known what was going on in her own department. Yes, Michael Martin should have known the police didn't have a warrant, but my gut instinct tells me that we've not heard anything like the whole of this story yet, and it would not surprise me in the least if it eventually turned itself inside out, leaving the Tories as the ones with egg on their faces. As I said, just a hunch.....

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7 comments:

MorrisOx said...

The 'whole story' is a simple one. The Sally Murrer judgement meant the Green case had no prospect of a conviction from the moment the police set the wheels in motion.

We shouldn't be surprised at the police commencing proceedings the day after an identical case had collapsed. This was the Met, the self-same force that advised Thames Valley about the Murrer case, so it clearly had no idea that wielding its legendary political sensitivity once more would end in another PR fiasco.

What happened in Parliament, as shocking and shambolic Michael Martin is, is not the issue. That lies in a Home Office that has become so frustrated with leaks that it feels the need to send the boys round.

Something the Home Office SPADS would, of course, know nothing about...

Stephen Rouse said...

It's a poor man's Dreyfus case, with nine hours down the nick replacing four years on Devil's Island. There is even the parallel irony that Dreyfus was a reactionary defended by the left, while many of Damien Green's supporters will have regarded him as dangerously liberal up until last week. Richard Littlejohn has already cast himself in the Zola role (that's the novelist, not the West Ham manager), openly challenging Jacqui Smith to sue him for libel.
I think your gut instinct might be right Paul. As Dreyfus himself (allegedly) said: "There's no smoke without fire."

Letters From A Tory said...

Michael Martin received a large amount of egg on his face this morning when it emerged that the police DID inform the Sergeant at Arms that they didn't have a warrant and explained the nature of their search - which Michael Martin denied earlier in the week.

The Daily Pundit said...

You'll be proved right, Paul. The Tories have been at it and they've been rumbled. It's going to be difficult to take them seriously on issues of national security after this.

Fergus said...

So every leak was on an issue of national security, was it Daily Pundit?

Were any of the leaks really related to national security? Certainly none that were put in the public domain.

Just what, precisely, have the Tories "been at"? Anything that Gordon Brown, Robin Cook, etc. weren't "at" when they were in opposition? I don't think so.

It's going to be difficult to take you seriously when you make such illogical assertions.

Stephen Rouse said...

Fergus you're quite right.
Robin Cook used his inside info to launch some of the most brilliantly forensic parliamentary performances seen in a generation.
Nobody would accuse Damian Green of doing that.

Michele said...

I think your hunch is probably more a case of indigestion - and understandable too.

I would be feeling a little sick in the stomach if I supported this anti-democratic lot of no-hopers presently infesting Parliament masquerading as the Labour Pary.

OT word verification bent u? - Not prophetic one trusts!