Squalid London 315

On the face of it, the Unexplained Wealth Order against Zamira Hajiyeva shows the UK cracking down on the torrent of corrupt money that gushes in to the City of London every single second. But dig deeper.

Hajiyev’s husband had fallen out of favour with the appallingly kleptocratic Aliev regime in Azerbaijan – a dictatorship whose corruption can be measured by the infallible indicator that Tony Blair is currently working for it. Hundreds of billions have been plundered from Azerbaijan’s oil revenue by the Azeri oligarchs.

So is the British government going after the very substantial assets in the UK of the ruling Aliev family? No. Is it going after the very substantial assets in the UK of the oligarchs surrounding the Aliev family? No. It is only going after almost the only Azeri oligarch who fell foul of the regime, and is taking an action which the Baku dictator will applaud rather than decry.

While her father was still dictator of Uzbekistan, Gulnara Karimova was subject to seizure of looted wealth and investigation in Switzerland, France and Sweden, among others. In the UK, where she had a home and very substantial assets, no action whatsoever.

What are we to make of Theresa May’s huffing and puffing about the Skripal affair, when the UK’s richest resident is Alisher Usmanov, who is Vladimir Putin’s old flatmate, right hand man in the media and business world and chairman of Gazprominvestholdings? There is no chance whatsoever any action will be taken against Usmanov, who acquired his assets in the most dubious manner imaginable. Usmanov is far too entrenched in the City.

These people interact with the British “elite” in any number of surprising ways. Claudia Winkleman’s husband made big money from producing a vanity film project for the Azeri dictator’s daughter. Former Foreign Secretary Dr David Owen is Usmanov’s factotum in the UK. Just two of many thousands of links that tie the UK’s gilded elite in with the looted wealth.

The Conservative Party has directly received donations totaling over £3 million from Russian oligarchs. That buys a lot of influence. But more important still is the influence of the City of London, where wideboy bankers grow rich on the World’s most sophisticated and “respectable” money laundering operation. While the Tories are determined to bluster us into a new cold war to benefit the military, industrial and security complex, none of the sanctions taken to date and none that will be taken have had any serious deleterious effect on the holders of the hundreds of billions of money looted from the Russian people during the Western mandated and organised privatisation of Russia’s mineral and industrial assets. Even as false rage over Salisbury fills the airwaves, the oligarchs are privately being reassured their money and lifestyles are safe.

And of course, the appalling Saudi Regime can imprison and execute as many dissidents and feminists as it wishes, and western governments and media will still applaud its “modernisation programme”. Western governments will still lust after lucrative arms deals to supply the bombs that blow apart Yemeni schoolchildren. And the Saudi regime can gruesomely murder as many journalists as they wish abroad, with no fear whatsoever of any action against them by the UK.

In a United Kingdom dominated by the cesspit that is the City of London, it is not just that money talks. It is that nobody else is heard.


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315 thoughts on “Squalid London

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  • Paul Barbara

    ‘Virgin Group Suspends Talks With Saudis About Planned $1Bln Investment – Reports’:
    Sure, a genuine gesture over the disappearance and almost certain death of Jamal Khashoggi.
    But why not do it before – are thousands of Yemeni lives of no consequence?
    Methinks he’s sucking up to the PTB, after his loss of the lottery opened his eyes to the downside of not playing ball with the PTB, thinking wealth alone could open all doors.

  • Sharp Ears

    The contracts with recruitment firms drawn up by Queen Esther McVey stipulate that
    her reputation must not be harmed by them.


  • Hieroglyph

    My guess, money laundering is one of the world’s largest economies. Money Laundering Makes The World Go Round, as the song has it. Going after money laundering is a rabbit hole that no serious Government wants to go down, especially as it gets into areas such as drugs, terrorism, and child trafficking. Oh, and Blair will be there somewhere, conniving, because he just always is. No, a few arrests are enough, particularly for political enemies, and the whole show moves on.

    There’s a whole thing, which I’m only recently aware of, around Feminists for Islam. It’s most peculiar. Criticizing Islam is hate speech, whilst slating the CIS White Patriarchy is, presumably, love speech. I can now safely say that I’m a former leftist, now a pretty dull classical liberal, and I drew the line at the weirdness of Identity Politics. Bit too Soviet dialectic, for my tastes.

    • SA

      Please consider one thing before totally defecting. Extreme pro something or other movements are exclusive and not inclusive. Socialism believes in the equality and dignity of all. Workers of the world unite. A lot of identity political movements seek to divide and therefore faux socialist.

    • certa certi

      ‘money laundering is one of the world’s largest economies’

      And occurs in unexpected places and ways. Mints do it. During the Asian financial crisis billions in gold, mostly bars, was sent to Mints in foreign nations where it was reprocessed to London metals market standards and reexported or invested. This is how Suharto and his cronies did it.

    • Hatuey

      “I can now safely say that I’m a former leftist, now a pretty dull classical liberal, and I drew the line at the weirdness of Identity Politics. Bit too Soviet dialectic, for my tastes.”

      It’s funny that you are so keen on labelling yourself and in the same sentence talk about the weirdness of identity politics.

      Politics isn’t football. You don’t need to subscribe to any particular dogma or doctrine.

  • Sharp Ears

    How does this look? 32% no less. Public sector workers were given a pay rise between 2%-3.5% in July.*

    ‘Senior judges could get pay rise of up to £60000
    Senior judges in England and Wales could be set for pay rises of up to 32% if recommendations made by the Senior Salaries Review Body are accepted.
    The move aims to address low morale among judges and to compensate them for changes to their pension scheme.
    The recommendations would see a High Court judge receive an additional £60,000 a year.
    Crown Court judges would receive a 22% increase – taking them to £165,00 – and district judges would get an 8% rise.

    * ‘A million public sector workers are to receive their biggest pay rise in nearly 10 years, the government says.
    It includes 2.9% extra this year for the armed forces, 2.75% for prison officers and up to 3.5% for teachers.
    Police will see a 2% rise, the same increase seen by GPs and dentists.’ 24th July 2018
    The government says it values the work of what it calls the UK’s world-renowned judiciary, and is considering the recommendations.’

    Current judicial salaries – https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/629667/moj-judicial-salaries-from-1-april-2017.pdf

    • Paul Greenwood

      They cannot recruit them. The attraction was always the pension plan for barristers plateauing in their 40s plus the chauffeur and the accommodation especially for Circuit Judges on the road…….the cutbacks in the pension scheme and the catastrophic state of courts with files delayed or backlogs means they cannot recruit. That is the reason for a salary increase “recommendation” which will not be implemented

  • donny

    If you have the time, would you expand on this Hatuey? cheers.

    ”I think Ireland is the interesting one. Makes me wonder about few things”

  • mark golding

    All the Skripal ‘huffing and puffing’ has a somewhat sinister, paradoxical purpose of reinforcing the ‘snoopers charter’ to which Liberty’s challenge to Part 4 of the Investigatory Powers Act has succeeded in that Part 4 of the Investigatory Powers Act is incompatible with EU Law: https://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2018/04/30/the-round-up-snoopers-charter-coroners-cab-rank-ruling-and-foul-play-with-freedom-of-information/

    Ad interim MI5 & GCHQ have scrambled to propose bulk data acquisition warrants are required, replacing section 94 of the Act exempting data already obtained: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/investigatory-powers-act-2016-codes-of-practice/handling-arrangements


    The British government has until November 2018 to amend this repulsive intrusion nosing around what should be our online privacy.

    • Sharp Ears

      Another of our Dear Leader’s constructs when she was Home Secretary. A very dangerous woman.

      ‘Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act 2014
      The Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act 2014 was repealed on 31 December 2016 and replaced by the Investigatory Powers Act 2016.
      Repealed: 31 December 2016
      Citation: 2014 c. 27
      Introduced by: Theresa May 14 July 2014
      Commencement: 17 July 2014

  • Ralph Green

    The last para of the post narrative brings to mind the quote of Martin Niemoller that unless we speak out for the persecuted, the poor, challenge the status quo and of course listen then ………
    “First they came for the communists…..
    …………?……………the trade Unionists
    ………………………………………the Jews
    Then they came for me
    And there was no one left to speak out for me.”
    What of Palestine, the Yemen, Somalia, Zimbabwe, Libya and on, and on, and on………?

    • N_

      Protestant theologian Martin Niemoller is often quoted. I respect his stance a lot: one must bear witness, one must act. This attitude manifested in the work of his friend, Ulrike Meinhof.

      (Those who want to read up on Meinhof should start with the collection of her writings in Everyone Talks About the Weather: We Don’t. She was absolutely nothing like how she was painted in the mass media after she went underground.) Preparations for nuclear war were viewed by radicals in 1960s West Germany and West Berlin as equivalent to preparations for a new Auschwitz: industrial-scale scientific and bureaucratic champing at the bit for a gigantic round of mass murder. Strategic nuclear weapons are tools for the extermination of civilians, the destruction of cities. That is what they do. Meanwhile you had a government of national unity, showing that all of the main existing parties were cool with this. So yes, indeed, remember Martin Niemoller – and act accordingly.

      This basic understanding of the background to the rise of radical political attitudes in Germany 20-25 years after the defeat of Nazism indicates how the CIA and big business must have been so happy, oh so happy, with the rise of big-business backed Green politics a decade later. Then a few years further on, the Greens joined the government, and about five minutes after they did, Germany took part in the NATO attack on Yugoslavia.

      • Jude 93

        N-: you argue here frequently that nationalism/Green politics etc are all a ploy by global capitalists to prevent the the left from coming to power. Much of the evidence points the other way. Nulabor – the ultra-globalist capitalist party was comprised mostly of erstwhile-commies of one hue or another: Mandelson, Milburn, Hoon, Dr John Reid, Charlie Whelan, Aaronovitch, the late Kevin Hughes, and many more. Even among erstwhile commies in the media there was and is strong support for the Neocon globalist agenda, e.g. Julie Burchill – who proudly advertised her allegiance to pro-Soviet “tankie-ism” (a stance that very interestingly didn’t stop her from becoming the most higly paid columnist in the UK in the 1980s – writing for the Murdoch press, the Daily Mail and so on. By the same token everyone knows the Neocons in America had Trotskyist roots. All of these folk also strongly supported the attacks on former Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan etc.

        There’s even considerable evidence that far from being a thorn in the flesh of the elite in the USA, Castro was actually helped to power by the CIA.

        If anything I would argue that the left and global capital have always been extremely cosy bedfellows – mavericks like Corbyn, Tony Benn, the late Alexander Cockburn and so on, being exceptions that prove the rule. Modern China is surely the prime example the mutually beneficial relationship between global capitalism and communist dictatorship.

        • Jude 93

          A minor correction: Julie Burchill opposed the Nato attack on Yugoslavia, but she supported all the other Neocon wars – and strongly supports Israel’s aggressive expansionism. Let’s not forge that the Iraqi Communist Party supported the western invasion of Iraq.

    • Clark

      It’s not just Zionists. Wikipedia is frequently a battleground between all sorts of interests. It’s well worth learning the ropes; the course of battle (which is all recorded in pages’ History) reveals many things!

  • Allan Howard

    The following is from an article dated September 5th on the BBC News website:

    ‘The BBC’s security correspondent Gordon Corera said he understood the authorities identified the pair “a while back” and “may also know their real names” and had hoped by not making this information public, they could intercept them should they continue to travel.’


    The reality is – what with some 250 people investigating the matter (and working around the clock in shifts no doubt) – that it would have taken them about a week, and two at the very most, to identify them. And why would Corera say that the authorities “may also know their real names”, unless THEY – the ‘authorities’ – knew that the names they had travelled under (on their passports) WEREN’T. And if the ‘authorities’ told Corera as much, then they obviously wanted him to put said information in the public domain, and would know that he HAD, so why did it all come out through Bellingcat? And why just one of them initially, then the other one a week or two later? Yes, it’s been obvious from the outset that they like to spread things out as much as possible and make as much hay out of it all as they possibly can, but maybe…….Oh, right, I just got it! Cos of course bellingcat first ‘investigated’ one of them, publicly named them, and then started ‘investigating’ the other one! Or so we were supposed to think and believe!

    As for the reason the ‘authorities’ give for not making the information public before, I really don’t buy it. Not one bit!

    • SA

      Interesting take Howard. It has been rather clear that the aim was to drip feed this story from the beginning, with facts mingling with rumours and a lot of opacity. The purpose of all this in my view is that it slowly embedded the story and narrative without necessarily owning up to the veracity of any pronouncement. There were three levels of these pronouncements: the political ones through the PM and ministers, the police and the security services, and the press. To this was most recently added Bellingcat, supposedly independent investigative blogger, but clearly associated with the Atlantic Council which is funded by several western governments and institutions.
      So the chatter is spread, comments are made, the story is tweaked according to these responses and this most recent chapter was meant to be a bait that can still be denied as it was not an official announcement. There has not been any straightforward announcement about this whole case and there probably never will be and it will end up with one of those coverup whitewash enquiries with foregone conclusions.
      I have to say that there has also not been any clarity or evidence provided from the Russian side.

    • Den Lille Abe

      That is a pretty fair assumption, in my opinion.
      What is not an assumption, is the inherent come trough from your comment that British secret services might lie….
      That is a befor the Almighty a proven fact, the whole government are inhabited by the biggest liars, since the founding of the papacy!
      If the British Government were like Pinocchio, they would have insta High Speed Rails built on noses going around the world!
      Even W.S.C mad a comment about this.

  • Sharp Ears

    Bad news on fracking, afraid to say.

    The legal challenge has failed and fracking goes ahead in Lancashire.

    Our old friend Judge Supperstone at work on this. My word! He’s busy. He was the one who granted the Azerjaiban woman anonymity.

    • Sharp Ears

      Here is the judge. Shame on him.

      and the link to the fracking news.

      Shame on Cuadrilla and its employees, A J Lucas and Riverstone Holdings

      Goldman Sachs strikes again.
      Riverstone was founded by Pierre F. Lapeyre, Jr.and David M. Leuschen, who had been instrumental in the formation of the Goldman Sachs Global Energy & Power Group in the mid 1980s.
      The firm is based in New York and has offices in Houston, London, and Mexico City. Riverstone and Carlyle closed on their first fund with $222 million of commitments in 2001. In June 2004, the firms completed fundraising for Carlyle/Riverstone Global Energy & Power Fund II, with $1.1 billion of investor commitments, almost five times the size of the first fund. In 2006, Riverstone and Carlyle raised a pair of funds, including the third in its series of main funds, Carlyle/Riverstone Global Energy and Power III, which raised $3.8 billion of capital. The two firms also raised their first renewable energy focused fund, Carlyle/Riverstone Renewable Energy Infrastructure Fund I, with $685 Million.’

      John Major joined Carlyle when he pushed off from No 10.

      • Charles Bostock

        Shame on any judge whose rulings are different from what (S)Harpie opines they should have been.

        • Sharp Ears

          Shame on any judge who does not make him/herself aware of the deleterious effects of hydraulic fracturing on the environment and on the poisoning of the water table upon which we rely for our survival.

    • Vivian O'Blivion

      Nice little podcast from WhoWhatWhy on the economics of fracking in North America featuring Bethany McLean. Bethany is the multi disciplined investigative journalist that started the landslide that ended Enron.


      Basically the economics of fracking don’t work with the possible exception of the Permian basin in West Texas and New Mexico. To maintain a flow of oil, you have to pretty much drill continuously. To exploit gas the infrastructure to get it to market makes the profit margin unrealistically exposed to fluctuation and risk. The only reason fracking has gotten as far as it has is low interest rates and excessive cash to invest. Wall Street have been promoting fracking as a means of generating fees for itself, knowing that the schemes will collapse under a mountain of debt (as many already have). Plus ca change plus la meme chose.

      • MaryPau!

        I thought that by opening up their gas reserves to bring down the cost of oil, the Saudis had deliberately sabotaged the. economics of fracking on the world stage?

        • Vivian O'Blivion

          The key point I think Bethany is making is that fracking was never a tried and tested money maker. Optimistic oil and gas wildcatters though they had the secret to get the technology to work and crucially Wall Street earned fees promoting schemes where the margins were excessively tight even if you got the technology right. Fracking was an infant that would die from the common cold, Saudi opening up the valves was the common cold.

          • Paul Greenwood

            It was a Tesla Racket. You issue Bonds in a low-yield market with promises for the future but not covered by Cash. You have Wall Street back to its CMO and CMO days of pumping Bonds into the Funds and to foreign banks with Depletion Writeoffs available as tax Shelters for the Idle Rich.

            The transactions fees are super, That is all Wall Street cares about. World price for has is higher than in regulated Us market so you need export markets to force up US domestic prices to One World Price – but they lack export terminals and need to lock in markets like Poland into high-priced gas. The CO2 emissions of LNG ships probably exceed any Russian pipelines but Poland is so corrupt that the US can do what it wants

      • Sharp Ears

        Poland is aggressively developing its shale gas reserves, thought to be the largest in Europe, though the latest estimate is significantly lower than that previously provided by the U.S. Department of Energy. A Polish Geological Institute study published in March 2012 concluded that, while fracking at one site had produced toxic waste, the latter was reused and did not harm the environment, though critics said the study was carried out at the start of exploration in Poland and does not reflect dangers from a long-term activity. ++ Large-scale fracking in Poland would relieve some of the EU’s dependency on Russian gas, but the East European state is densely populated and has a large agricultural sector, meaning the massive amounts of water required for fracking have raised additional concerns.++



    • Den Lille Abe

      At least you get free gas! In your water faucet, that is, just move your stove.
      Brits always whine 🙂

  • Antonyl

    hundreds of billions of money looted from the Russian people

    This was as much a mistake from Russian society as from capitalist vultures.

    • SA

      ‘Russian society’ as it then was had just emerged from a very closed manged society to a free market with no rules. Some very clever people probably with outside help were able to manipulate the free for all and exploit it. It is typical blaming of the victim that you have just indulged in.

      • Antonyl

        My Russian acquaintance was in Moscow during this period; he (well educated) said this, so he was blaming his own group. Russians in general received good education over generations so they could have devised checks and balanced for capitalist plunder but they didn’t. A few other Russians took most of the loot – and stashed it in London, Zurich etc. Now > 60% of Russians have next to nothing, which Putin didn’t change.

  • Antonyl

    Putin can (and does frequently) operate like a gang Don – armed with nukes. Trump cannot copy that act as the US has many checks and balances for solo black mail.

    What May is doing in between is indeed weird; she fences for the City that keeps the Russian, Saudi, Chinese etc. loots, so she is supposed to keep all customers happy.

    • Antonyl

      Putin does have to watch his back while battling NATO; if he gets in deep trouble Xi and his party will happily swallow a huge chunk of Siberia.

      • Rowan

        “Putin does have to watch his back while battling NATO; if he gets in deep trouble Xi and his party will happily swallow a huge chunk of Siberia.” Would that be bad? Isn’t there population deficit on the Russian side, and population surplus on the Chinese side? Or are you thinking of hydrocarbons, oil & gas?

      • SA

        Really? He has to watch his back closer to home from the implanted 5th column and from close neighbors with thier fancy colour revolutions and provocations. The Chinese have not displayed tendencies to invade others unlike the US and other western proxies including ones in the ME.

        • N_

          Can you name who you think are some figures in the implanted fifth column? There is as little chance of a colour revolution in Russia as there is in the US, China, or I__ael.

          I thought otherwise in 2012, but in the election of that year the FSB just laughed at the CIA and MI6 electoral effort and what was being done through the embassies. That is regardless of how the stimulation towards a colour revolution might be distributed between inside and outside the country. Which is not to say there will be much such stimulation, because there comes a point when even the CIA and MI6 stop wasting their time. Russia has never been susceptible to a colour revolution. Changeovers or non-changeovers at the top are more likely to happen as they did in 1953 (arrest of Beria), 1991 (temporary and then permanent removal of Gorbachev), or 1993 (Yeltsin tank fire at the White House). And in any case the era of colour revolutions is over.

          Western strategy to destabilise the ruling network in Russia will be more likely to focus on mafia war, and in that department they will find that the FSB has long been way ahead of them. The absence of mafia war in the past 30 years needs to be explained, and that’s mostly to do with the power and effectiveness of the FSB. (But let’s all keep on reading the Evening Standard – wink!)

      • harrysthumb

        Just to clarify Antonyl, your position is;

        Putin is an untouchable gangster because he has nukes but may lose Siberia to China if he focuses too much on Nato?


        You don’t advise the Cabinet do you?

      • Paul Greenwood

        Japanese tried it and Zhukhov destroyed their armies so they decided to attack Pearl Harbour instead and Zhukhov moved his troops to Stalingrad and swept the Germans from the board.

    • SA

      Putin has never acted the way you described. Putin is an elected President of Russia just as Trump is. He does not have a free reign on the nuclear button nor does he wish to use it as has been proven after several provocations and has shown restraint in reacting. In fact recently it was very clear that Shoigu contradicted Putin and decided that Syria must have the S-300.
      You arew just repeating propaganda I am afraid.

      • Antonyl

        Propaganda from a Russian acquaintance who lived there over 50 years? He was much closer to Putin than me.
        Moscow is heavily defended by anti ballistic systems. Who is between Putin and his nuclear button?

        • Charles Bostock

          Your original post has brought out the Friends of Putin brigade en masse!

          You have clearly not understood something : President Putin is the greatest world statesman ever. The cleverest, the most peace-loving, the most altruistic, the most honest and transparent, the most unlike any Western statesman ore politician you could think of. Shame on you for expressing doubt.

        • mark golding

          Moral sense perhaps Antonyl? The inner voice that pulled Putin back from ‘carpet bombing’ Idlib; that sense of obligation clinically removed from criminal liberators, false prophets of freedom, terrorist constructs and blood-soaked purveyors of Western colonialism and imperialism including Dodgy Dave, Sarcrazy, Bandar Bush & Bambi Bliar epitomized by the indelible killing fields in Libya & Iraq.

        • Olaf S

          Your friend must be (feel?) alone. When 100 mill Russians vote for Putin it is first of all because they believe he keeps the country safe. (the Russians have very strong feeling about war, I can tell you).

          Personally I believe the only thing which makes Europe relatively safe are the Russian nuclear weapons. The Americans mean well and thinks they are the good guys, but they are raving mad (some would say: lack an objective view of the world) and would long ago had started one more of their meaningless wars (against Russia), were it not for those nuclear weapons. So the paradox follows that if we were completely rational, we would help the Russians developing and keeping their weapons up to date.

          (But of course, if we were rational we would do many curious things, like encouraging arranged marriages, for example (they are statistically more happy and stable), “hang the last king in the guts of the last priest”, and all that jazz). Cheers..

          • Olaf S

            + making a 100 times bigger effort to keep planet Earth clean & healthy (needless to say).

          • mark golding

            Safety and madness are interesting points Olaf S in an analysis of international security and the balance of world power. Subjectively I guess we are at a staget in our human development where a certain sentient bears witness to a global continuum of escalating rhetoric, this in place of negotiation with others in an effort to move towards a more balanced world.

            The same sentient thread exposes the threat of a unipolar world where compliance is the foundation of well-being, growth and accomplishment. The attempts to fragment and weaken the strength of the United Nations while defending NATO is a clear example of this pervasive push towards becoming an instrument of global authority.

            Realistically many will reason that the most powerful antidote to power is power. In what form that takes is I believe the key to our survival.

        • Paul Greenwood

          Probably the same kind of men who stood between Khrushchev and the nuclear “buttons” or Brezhnev. The Russians are extremely cautious where Americans and Germans have been proven to be reckless and impulsive

    • laguerre

      I haven’t seen the professionals giving up. Is mondoweiss official? That would be news to most people. A blogger equals official diktat!

    • Ian

      It’s not official. it is an opinion that hasbara has died because nobody in their right mind believes Israeli propaganda any more, in particular their recent attempts to whitewash the massacring of defenceless palestinian protesters, their attempts to silence justified criticism and their attempts to influence politics in Western countries. That includes former defenders of the apartheid state. Of course suckers and mindless propagandists keep repeating the claptrap, bots like ‘charles’.

  • frankywiggles

    Sceptred isle still punching far above its weight in the fields of corruption, fraud, catastrophic warmongering and royal weddings. “We do these sort of things rather well, don’t we?”

    • harrysthumb

      I do hope the Royal Guards are keeping a close eye on Crown Prince Andrew al Britani throughout the day today with all those innocent minors running around the royal grounds. Or maybe someone should be keeping an eye on the Royal Guards given the news in the past few days. #Concerned.

  • Sharp Ears

    Squalid Belfast. No shame.

    MLAs paid £275k for travel to Stormont since suspension
    By John Monaghan
    BBC News NI
    2 hours ago

    MLAs have continued to claim an allowance for travel to the Assembly, which has not sat since last January
    More than £275,000 has been paid to MLAs in allowances for travelling to Stormont between the last election in March 2017 and June 2018.
    Northern Ireland has been without a functioning devolved government since January 2017.
    The Northern Ireland Assembly is based at Stormont estate in east Belfast.
    MLAs are entitled to an allowance solely for travel to Stormont, ranging from £600 within Belfast to £6,200 in Fermanagh and South Tyrone.
    NI Assembly members’ pay to be cut
    NI politicians eye life after Stormont
    MLAs paid £9m since Stormont suspended
    Elected representatives have continued to use the building for a wide range of functions including meetings, talks aimed at restoring devolution and constituency business.
    Quarterly reports on MLAs expenses are published on the Northern Ireland Assembly website.


    • Charles Bostock

      More quoting from the BBC, that collection of wicked Establishment stooges which never tells the truth, whose bosses are all vastly overpaid and whose political reporters are all MI5 and MI6 agents!

  • Sharp Ears

    LOL Wallis Simons demoted to royal wedding duties.


    No less than five articles yesterday –
    Small and VERY dedicated group of superfans brave downpours as they prepare to camp out on the route Princess Eugenie will travel to her wedding tomorrow
    Princess Eugenie’s party bags! Royal gives guests £15 worth of treats including shortbread, a magnet and a biodegradable poncho (but they’re already listed for FIFTY times as much on eBay)

    plus one of his more predictable pieces with the usual content on a John McDonnell meeting in Barnet

  • Den Lille Abe

    I truly miss a button that hides certain people. Not because I disagree , but when comments are blatantly stupid, you should be able to protect yourself; like turning of TV of skip certain radio channels et cetera ,et cetera, here my last defence is recognize name and scroll fast past the deluded and nonsensical rantings.

  • Republicofscotland

    Thank goodness for RT news, one of the few news channels on the box, not giving wall to wall coverage, of another royal wedding.

    This time it’s the daughter of Prince Andrew, Andrew, a one time British ambassador for trade, whose job was to promote British businesses abroad, supposedly creating wealth for the nation, in the process. Alas he was actually creating wealth for himself.

    I wonder how much its cost the taxpayer to provide security etc , for the marriage of another royal parasite, they breed like rabbits, and are a huge drain on society.

  • Bert.

    Are we writing in amerikan now? Totaling instead of totalling.

    It is also interesting, once again, how many Classical Labour people (in this case David Owen) are all too happy to bury their snouts in the capitalist trough.


  • Dave

    The oligarchs money is stolen, deposited and laundered in London. This is encouraged, with the prospect that it will, in turn, be confiscated (stolen) by City of London regulators acting against ‘dirty money’ depending on who’s in favour at the time. The same happened to the Libyan sovereign fund at the hands of Goldman Sachs when Gaddafi was allowed to re-join the international community.

  • Sharp Ears

    6 Palestinians were killed and 50 injured by the Israelis at the ‘border’ yesterday.

    Israeli fuel supplies into Gaza have been stopped.

  • Sean O’Donoghue

    I’ve just finished reading Oliver Bulloch’s Moneyljand: why thieves & crooks now rule the world and how to take it back. Fascinating insight how they all head to Londonwhere there are any number of spiv accountants, lawyers, spin doctors, passport acquirers, all willing to help them evade justice and hide their ill gotten gains.

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