The great horsemeat scandal appears the result of fraud perpetrated in the European meat processing insudtry, and it worked because the supermarkets really care very little about food quality: care little and test less. The media frenzy has spurred on the arrest of a handful of people from small British abattoirs which are in no way central to the main scandal, and I suspect those arrested may prove to have done very little wrong.
But compare this rapid arrest of “small men” with the LIBOR scandal, where banks indisputably rigged, deliberately and repeatedly rigged, the basis of many trillions of dollars worth of financial transactions. It was deliberate dishonesty, fines on the banks have added up to billions, but not one of the fraudulent bankers who did it has been arrested – even though it is known who they are and there is a ton of documentary evidence. Not one arrest. Not one. Just as nobody has been arrested in this country for the fraudulent sub-prime packages and interest rate swaps that led ordinary, and even very poor, people to have to pay out huge proportions of their income to “bailout” the bankers.
The bankers meanwhile have got the bonus fatcat schemes rolling again. The economy is based on institutionalised robbery. The perpetrators are untouchable. They don’t get dirty with guts and blood. Little men who do are expendable. They can be made examples of, to feed the lust of the tabloid fed masses.