Saturday, May 23, 2009

Andrew MacKay: ‘a thief, a crook, a scamster, a dishonest man with no sense of moral judgement and no sense of right and wrong’

How can an MP give a moral lead to the nation when he is so deficient in his personal morality? This BBC report is compulsive viewing – not only because in its spectacle it is pure theatre in the Aristotelian sense (lacking only in music, though Beau Bo D’Or could easily rectify that). But it is also both tragedy and comedy: tragic for the Conservative Party which has to endure – on the eve of a crucial election – the demoralising consequences of Sky accusing David Cameron’s erstwhile ‘Senior Parliamentary Adviser’ of being ‘disingenuous’ while the voters of Bracknell accuse him of ‘misrepresenting’ his constituency meeting; and comic in the extent to which Mr Mackay sustains the absurd (and utterly unscientific) assertion that each time he was criticised ‘a quarter of the audience applauded’, and each time there were expressions of support ‘three quarters of the audience applauded’. It is astonishingly poor judgement evidencing complete insensitivity to the anger and mood of the nation.

Andrew MacKay dismisses criticism and patronises the people. In the interview he even contradicts himself, insisting twice that this was a ‘straw poll’, and then saying this ‘wasn’t a straw poll’ (does he understand the term?). Significantly, the Association chairman did not permit a vote, simply leaving Mr MacKay to communicate his feelings and subjective perception of how the meeting went.

Straw poll or not, this embarrassing interview really ought to be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. In today’s Daily Mail Lord Tebbit warns David Cameron about perceived double standards in his dealing with Conservative MPs. The axe has fallen swiftly on some Tory grandees of the old school, with their knighthoods, mansions and duck islands. But Mr Cameron’s modernising friends and fellow Old Etonians have been spared such summary judgement. Sir Peter Viggers was sacked for claiming £30,000 on ‘gardening expenses’; Anthony Steen was sacked for claiming £88,000 on ‘property maintenance’. But Andrew MacKay and his wife Julie Kirkbride have fleeced the taxpayer of a whopping £282,731 in an audacious and utterly immoral scam.

Their expense claims were neither within the letter nor the spirit of the rules. The claim for their two houses was fraudulent because in the eyes of the law Andrew Mackay and Julie Kirkbride are one. The religious marriage service became a state contract precisely for the purposes of defining property ownership and such matters as financial inheritance rights.

When the two became one, their properties became co-owned and they became mutual beneficiaries of each others’ estates and mutually liable. Yet Mr MacKay nominated the family home in Ms Kirkbride’s constituency as his second home, while she nominated their London property as her second home. Thus neither of them had a primary residence: they lived in both homes wholly at the taxpayers’ expense. In short, Andrew Mackay and Julie Kirkbride sought to defraud the taxpayer by pretending that their properties were separately owned by separate people. They were not because they are not.

The 'advice' of the Fees Office in this scam is immaterial. The claim was immoral, deceitful, and quite possibly illegal. They have brought the Conservative Party into disrepute, and they should be deselected. If they are not, the Party risks losing two 'safe' seats to high-profile 'anti-sleaze' Jury Team candidates.

This Sky interview is damning. The good that Andrew MacKay has done for the people of Bracknell has, in the words of one constituent, been ‘swept away by greed’

Yet incredibly, manifesting his disdain for the voters and showing utter contempt for the taxpayers, he is not volunteering to pay back any of the £282,731 he and his wife have fraudulently claimed. He dismissively says: “I will naturally abide by the decision of those who are looking into these affairs who will make recommendations on what if any money to return.”

What if any money to return?

This beggars belief.

Andrew MacKay is obviously banking (literally) on the fact that membership of the Conservative Party's scrutiny committee consists of:

• David Gold, senior partner at Herbert Smith
• Patrick McLoughlin MP, Chief Whip
• John Randall MP, Assistant Chief Whip
• Ed Llewellyn, DC's Chief of Staff
• Ian McIsaac, Head of Compliance at CCHQ
• Jeremy Middleton, Chairman of National Conservative Convention

And whips doubtless stand by each other like Freemasons (that is if they are not all Masons anyway).

Bracknell (and Bromsgrove) 2010 are in danger of becoming a replay of Tatton 1997. Andrew Mackay and Julie Kirkbride are recontaminating the Conservative brand. They must both step down for the good of the Party: they both need to spend more time with their families in their respective second homes.


Anonymous McKarcthxy said...

I remember helping out in a local by-election for the BNP a couple of years ago, and I got into a friendly conversation with one of the Conservative helpers. He said to me that we were waisting our time really because the Tories are like a well oiled machine in the area: they consequently won anyway, but I was not altogether sure what he meant....I know exactly what he means now though.

Well done YG for an honest and balanced report though. You have my respect for this. There is nothing more despicable than sticking to party lines in the face of such God Damned lies and immorality.

I have helped out in quite a few elections now, and on the whole I would say the Conservatives fight a clean and balanced campaign, in comparison to the rabid and emotive hatred that emanates from both the LibDems and Labour.

23 May 2009 at 11:08  
Blogger Mark Reckons said...

I was at Andrew MacKay's meeting in Bracknell last night and have posted a full review of it here.

I think his position is now untenable and he will have to stand down.

23 May 2009 at 11:33  
Blogger Gnostic said...

The more I see of the Cameronistas the less I like. We've had twelve years of incompetent government, corruption and cronyism. No way do I want to vote for more of the same.

Unfortunately, I have a dilemma. Our local Conservative MP is damn good at his job. He works hard for his constituents and is a Eurosceptic. I don't agree with his stance on global warming (I'm a so called denialist) but you can't have everything.

Do I vote for the local man or do I vote against Cameron come the next GE? I'm going to have to consider that question carefully. One thing's for certain though. Cameron won't get my Euro-vote next week.

23 May 2009 at 11:44  
Blogger Gnostic said...

Mark Reckons,

Many thanks for your notes on the meeting. Your views and those of the people adding to the BBC interview demonstrate that McKay is not fit for office.

It also brings Cameron's judgement into question.

23 May 2009 at 11:56  
Anonymous Bethel said...

By the way, do MP's have to declare whether or not they are freemasons like other folk in public life????

23 May 2009 at 14:02  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From David Lonsdale

Your Grace,
Tatton cannot be compared with Bracknell. Accusations were made against Neil Hamilton by a proven liar, namely Fayed. They were pounced upon by the pro-Labour Guardian newspaper, notable David Leigh, the Comments editor, and spun into a story.
No material evidence was presented against Hamilton although three witnesses cane forward, under dubious circumstances, who were all employed by Fayed.
If you can find a copy of "Trial by Conspiracy" by Jonathan Boyd Hunt you will find most of the story behind the Guardian/BBC conspiracy.
You might also see

hosted by Boyd-Hunt

23 May 2009 at 14:34  
Anonymous invincibly ignorant said...

well thank f**k for that

may be Cameron was visiting here??

23 May 2009 at 18:45  
Blogger ukipwebmaster said...

In case you missed Stuart Wheeler's full page ad in today's Telegraph:

And for some light relief the Daily Sport has some interesting posters about the EU:

23 May 2009 at 23:41  

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