Expenses 69

A national newspaper has put in a Freedom of Information request to the University of Dundee for the expenses claims of Court members over the last three years – precisely the period I have been Rector. Now why might they want to do that?

Personally, I only submitted any calims in the first six months when I was on my uppers and needed to claim travel and accommodation costs. Since I could afford it, for the last 30 months I have borne all expenses from my own pocket. So if anyone’s hoping for a scandal from me, they will be deisappointed.

69 thoughts on “Expenses

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  • mary

    @George Dutton 12.36am

    I wondered where he was.

    From the Debevoise & Plimpton LLP website

    ‘Our lawyers are responsive, thoughtful, ethical and vigorous advocates with a substantive understanding of our clients’ business needs and the many marketplaces in which they compete.’


    Milord’s specialties are listed as Litigation

    International Dispute Resolution; International Corporate Investigations and Defence

    The firm seems to be riding a wave whilst companies and jobs are going to the wall and the economies of some countries are shot.


  • mary

    A lawyers’ paradise. Cosy isn’t it.

    A spokesperson for the attorney general, Lady Scotland, said today that Goldsmith had help preparing for his testimony from a barrister* contracted to work for him by the Treasury solicitors. In a statement, her office said that like other witnesses he had been provided with “basic legal support” as the inquiry originally proposed.

    However, the statement added that Goldsmith had also received help from Whitehall lawyers who “in order to minimise costs contracted out some of the administrative assistance to a junior barrister”. That help had cost about £2,000, the statement added.


    *PS Anyone know who the barrister was?

  • haward

    Come off it Craig ; if you’ve been blagging expenses then we have a right to know. If not then what are you worried about? You , of all people , should be glad that we are able to get at this information. You could , of course , publish your expenses on your website. My local MP , Peter Soulsby , does just that.

  • ingo

    Haward , dearest, why should Craig be ‘blagging’ expenses, whilst all others on the court are applying to ‘receive’ them?

    Do explain you tabloidal zest, this is not an MP but a rector of a university.

    But, and here is a very tasty and succulent target, should you want to cast your eyes on to Newspaper editors and journalists, who also claim expenses and who do pay the odd snout for what they call,’newsworthy’ stories, then that would be long overdue.

    Good on your local MP, again, such scrutiny was long in the coming, pity they had to be forced into action.

  • mary

    Eliott Morley, Jim Devine, David Chayter and Lord Hanningfield will all face criminal proceedings. Two other cases ongoing.

  • haward

    I am only asking Craig why he is worried. If he has been blagging (by which I mean overclaiming) we have a right to know. Craig is making a mountain out of a molehill here. If he is honest (& he is) all is well & good. And he could , of course , like my local MP , publish the expenses he claims from we taxpayers.

    My MP , by the way , was not forced into publication ; he did it long before the scandal (& I still won’t vote for him).

    Where did I mention that others on Court “receive” expenses? I just did not say that.

    Please don’t make it up. Craig can do that on his own

  • Jon

    @haward – I guess you’re new here! I would wager that Craig would be entirely happy to publish his expenses. The point is not that FoI is being questioned – the point is that someone may be going on a (pointless) fishing expedition to discredit him.

    Indeed, I am surprised that Craig has been willing to pay travel costs out of his own pocket – reasonable costs for travel are entirely claimable, I would have thought. Would you have a problem with that?

  • haward

    I am , by the way , also campaigning for an inquiry into Legg. This 75 year old career Government lawyer managed to spend 1,100,000 quid on his investigation. Seriously 1.1M to recover 1.2M. Awesome even by Whitehall standards of ineptitude & inefficiency. That , at 400 quid per hour , is 15 man years of work. Truly staggering. I want to know who did the work , how they were selected , what their terms of reference were.

    How about it guys? Can we organise a campaign for an inquiry into Legg?

  • mary

    That should be Elliot Morley.

    Only one other case is ongoing.

    Lord Clarke of Hampstead will not be charged.

  • haward

    Jon ; your guess is just that. It is a guess. It is impertinent. Please take your ad hominem points & place them where the monkey placed his nuts.

    As I have posted twice Craig could easily publish his expenses. I am not criticising him for not doing so. I only make the suggestion so that we can more easily verify his comment.

    The FOI request is perfectly legitimate & Craig says he is clean. Then why the fuss?

  • logos

    haward, try to read this slowly, and maybe it’ll sink in. Craig is *not worried*: he raised this topic himself to show that others are trying to dig the dirt on him in order to undermine his credibility with an ad hominem attack. Remember there is a very interesting radio play coming up that could add considerable weight to criticisms in the Iraq Inquiry, so certain parties have an interest in mud-slinging. Moreover, it is abundantly clear that Craig has deliberately *underclaimed*. Throw that into your warped thinking.

    You’re the one who’s trying to make a mountain (scandal) out of a wormhole, by just making up accusations. It’s an obvious distraction technique. So it’s a good example of the tactics Craig was highlighting in his message. QED.

  • George Dutton

    “Indeed, I am surprised that Craig has been willing to pay travel costs out of his own pocket – reasonable costs for travel are entirely claimable”


    I am staggered that Craig has paid out of his own pocket…To think the people of Norwich North missed out on having him as their MP.

  • haward

    Wow. The weirdos are out in force today. Logos says I am making accusations. He says I make an attack. That is all simply untrue. I have made no accusation no attack & no insinuation. No ad hominem comment (other than the one which says Craig can make it up on his own but I reckon I can prove that one).

    He seems to think that I am trying to divert attention from Radio 4s Saturday Night play on Craig ; that is a barking fucking mad suggestion.

    He asserts that my thinking is warped. Well ; if asking Craig to publish his expenses is warped thinking I am guilty.

    I read the post quite slowly & I think that it is a tad hysterical. Is there a full moon tonight? Maybe it’s a relative or a creditor posting?

  • Jon

    @haward – I don’t feel I’ve said anything rude to you, and logos does not appear to have demonstrated any “weirdness” either. Discussion here is usually to the point, and in most cases there is no intention to offend. However your unnecessary offensive language puts you in my “ignore list”.

  • haward

    well Jon if you think that making yourself known to me by the patronising introduction “I guess you’re new here..” wasn’t offensive and was to the point then that was an error on both counts. If it wasn’t meant to be offensive then I accpet that to be the case. logos can answer for Logos (unless you have two identities)

  • Craig

    Umm, I’ve known Haward for over 30 year folks – he isn’t a troll.

    Just had confirmation from the University Secretary that over 3 years my expenses totalled 1,120 pounds, and in the last 2 years I didn’t claim any. It’s going to be pretty hard for anyone to make a scandal out of those figures!

  • haward

    Oh bugger. Craig thinks he knows me. Truly the weirdos are out tonight. I told you he could make it up on his own.

    Craig (whoever you are)

    Your beatification committee has been wasting its time in finding error with me. As I suggested hours ago , and I knew that you would see the sense in this , publishing the data is all you needed to do. Thankyou for assessing my suggestion and finding that I was right all along. If my local Labour MP can do it so can you!

    Meanwhile the werewolves can continue their preparation for the night ahead.

  • Mark

    ‘I don’t believe newspapers can file FOI requests. Only individuals.’

    If someone on the payroll of a newspaper submits a FoIA request, good practice requires them to identify the organ employing them. If however the journo is a freelance, they are under no obligation to disclose who has offered the commission.

  • Jives

    £1120 over 3 years..

    That’s £7.17 per week.

    My my haven’t you been quite the playboy!

  • Rob Lewis

    @Haward: “I am , by the way , also campaigning for an inquiry into Legg.”

    Sorry Haward, I may have missed something: what’s your other campaign concerned with? The court members of Dundee University?

  • Anonymous

    Craig I have a Question, and that goes to Suhel sadi too.

    How do you apply for expenses?

    I am talking about the tax ones when you have to claim back what you spent on buses and stuff?

    My wife is hiring a company to do it, and I think she is paying them more than she is saving.

    Because they charge £15 per time sheet and she only spends about 4 £ a day on buses.

    And then there is food I think it just about breaks even?

    Isn’t there a way of doing that stuff yourself and saving the £15?

  • logos

    haward, FYI your messages have been loaded with insinuations.

    “I am only asking Craig why he is worried.”

    – You claimed that he’s worried, but the evidence suggests otherwise. You then set up a false implication that if he’s worried he must have been blagging, and challenge him to prove different. That qualifies as an accusation.

    “Craig is making a mountain out of a molehill here.”

    – Why would you write such an odd subjective assessment, if not to reinforce the insinuation.

    “the expenses he claims from we taxpayers.”

    – you assume the funding comes from taxpayers, but universities are independent institutions that receive funding from many different income streams in addition to subsidies.

    All designed to manufacture a bogus insinuation out of nothing that Craig has been blagging from the taxpayer.

    And your callous insults are not welcome. If you took such a persistently antagonistic attitude in any social company, you could expect to be admonished and told where to go. You suggested one such place yourself. Please go there promptly.

  • mary

    Off topic but……

    Memo ‘shows Blair Iraq war deal with Bush’

    Tony Blair denied striking a ‘covert’ deal with President Bush

    The leader of Plaid Cymru’s MPs has said he has a memo showing Tony Blair and George Bush struck a secret deal to invade Iraq a year before the 2003 war.

    Elfyn Llwyd told the BBC’s Straight Talk he had written to Iraq Inquiry chair Sir John Chilcot to say he would be prepared to hand the document over.

    He said the memo, which is marked “Top Secret and Confidential” contradicted statements made by Mr Blair.

    Mr Blair previously told the inquiry he made no “covert” deal with Mr Bush.

    Mr Llwyd, who in 2004 launched a campaign to impeach the then prime minister for misleading Parliament over the war, said he could not be specific about what was in the memo, which he “believed” was American in origin.

    “I’ve not shown it to anybody to try, because I, frankly, I didn’t want to be in any position where I was accused of undermining anything that was going on at the time,” he told interviewer Andrew Neil.



  • Clark

    George Dutton,

    thanks for the second link. It’s ironic that Craig Mundie of Microsoft is calling for regulation, when Microsoft make by far the least secure operating systems, that even seem to have deliberate insecurities built into them.

    There is a way that ordinary users could support much of the Internet on their own machines, making the Internet impossible to shut down. The problem would be persuading enough people to join in.

  • Clark

    From George’s second link:

    “Mundie (of Microsoft) and other experts have said there is a growing need to police the internet to clampdown on fraud, espionage and the spread of viruses.”

    But only Microsoft products are susceptible to viruses. And virus infection is involved in most frauds.

    Gary McKinnon, the British hacker facing extradition to the US for breaking into American military computer systems said in a BBC interview: “I found out that the US military use Windows and having realised this, I assumed it would probably be an easy hack if they hadn’t secured it properly.”

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