Continued Prevarication over Gould-Werritty 27

It is now four days and three postal deliveries since the FCO emailed me saying that they were sending me the Gould/Werritty diary entries by post, together with a covering letter – and something else of which the very existence is explosive news. But still, this has not actually arrived.

I know that there has been a massive argument going on in the FCO about what I am legally entitled to receive under the Freedom of Information Act, and just how much they are revealing by adding the additional bits of information. I cannot believe that they are going, even now, to resile from the commitment they made to me to send the documents, and I can only imagine there is continuing haggling over what can be redacted.

I have not succeeded yet, but I must say I am happily surprised that there is still enough of the rule of law left in this country for those within the FCO to prevail who were arguing that the FCO had to comply with its legal obligation and release the material. There were those who wanted the material simply to be quietly destroyed. I know names, and those will also follow later. I suspect this new, after the last minute, extra delay means there will be extra redaction in the material.

No wonder the arch-liar Gus O’Donnel as he left his job was arguing for the castration of the Freedom of Information Act. He has a great deal to hide.

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27 thoughts on “Continued Prevarication over Gould-Werritty

  • writerman

    I think, Craig, it might be in your interests to step back and take a deep breath, before you publish the material, in case the build-up raises expectations to such a height that nothing you pull out of your hat can live up to what people have been led to expect, and people can be cruel when they are disappionted and feel let down. Still, I’m sure you know what you’re doing.

  • Passerby

    Let us hope there exist the rule of law, and it will hold sway in this case.
    Although, redactions that you refer to, are in fact a cover for rogue agents, engaged in their clandestine sabotage of whatever hints of accountability that as yet remain. Secrecy is the domain of thieves, brigands, thugs and ne’er do well’s, that can hardly be justified in any modern society.

  • craig Post author


    Remember I haven’t seen it yet. But there is a reason that, even if this material itself is deadly dull, the fact of its existence is vastly incriminating. I could reveal why that is now, but it will be easier to explain once I have the material.

  • John Goss

    Royal Mail can be slow, especially if someone else has to look at it first. If it arrives in a see-through envelope, with a message that it has been opened by the Royal Mail, that is a legitimate practice. I’ve had a few of these in the past. But I used to get a lot more where the packaging had been blatantly opened without explanation. It seems to have stopped recently.

  • Tony

    The worst that might happen if they flaunt the FOI Act is a slap on the wrist from the Information Commissioner about a year down the line. I don’t preclude that there might be some conscientious and law-abiding staff at the FCO, though. However you are entitled to ask for an explanation of the redactions one by one, Craig.

  • Guest

    Craig, why you?, the newspapers should be pursuing this story!, the fact they are not tells us all as to the state were in!. Chilling.

  • Guest

    As you know Craig, its all about interpretation of the two above words, in such cases the government interpretation is the one and only interpretation deemed to be the right one!.

  • Clark

    MerkinOnParis, similar comments have occasionally been taken as veiled threats; I hope you aren’t covering up for these twats.
    All, the above is a joke. If you don’t get it, look up the word “merkin” and/or “twat”.

  • MerkinOnParis

    Hi Clark, MOP was taken as a name after careful consideration of its meaning.

    As regards the other, both Salmond and Murray are thorns which the government would love to pluck. Let’s hope they are not successful in this Olympic year when pretexts for the invasion of Iran are plentiful.

  • Iain Orr


    Should it not be the task of LibDem members of the Coalition to ensure that no Ministers in the Coalition are allowed to get away with emasculating/ ignoring the letter and spirit of the FOIA? It reflects, after all, what were LibDem values and commitments. There ought to be plenty of Labour supporters of FOIA, especially on the topic of your request, even though Tony Blair latterly did all
    he could to strangle the Act when enough of it survived its long gestation to be an obstacle to his elitist anti-democratic way of doing politics.

  • Jives

    “What is the use of An artificial hairpiece for the pudendum; a pubic wig? or a merkin in another word?”
    What…aint you ever slipped and grazed your knee on astroturf Fedup??…:.)

  • Clark

    Fedup, in general, I haven’t a clue. The concept seems rather outdated, with the current fashion for “Brazilians” and “unwanted hair”. I’m rather amused at the thought of someone’s collection of these objects, maybe hanging pegged to a washing line or displayed for selection on a mantelpiece. Like Tribbles from Star Trek, maybe. But our very own Merkin (on Paris) is a very helpful contributor to the threads.

  • Barbara

    From what oi read, merkins were pubic wigs used in Georgian times, to disguise a lack of real pubic hair, lost after the use of mercury ‘cures’ for syphilis. So apt for substituting for the word ‘American’?

  • Fedup

    Your remark brought back memories of getting the knees not so much as grazed but muddy, with the additional and unforgettable figure 1887 embossed on the more fleshy parts of my companion. How I miss the care free days and the exuberance of being alive in its totality. Thanks Jives.
    You made me laugh, the thoughts of merkins hanging on the line, and awaiting to be combed and made presentable. Although I remain curious as to what kind of hair was used in the make-up of these, and whether the donors get paid for their hair, and who actually got to trim the said hair, and if the operation was post bathing, or the harvester held his/her breath in a fashion akin to divers?
    Thanks for solving the puzzle, the denuded souls were trying to hide their bout of the genitourinary afflictions they had experienced, through donning their merkin.
    However, does “Paris” refer to that Hilton character, or the Matthew character? This secondary and arising question needs to be explored further.