East Lothian Courier – 22 September 2022


Remembrance was required following Queen Elizabeth’s sad passing and cancellation of events was a consequence. However, it has resulted in a worrying lack of scrutiny in Parliament. There’s much to be done and reducing what would have been the recess for party conferences is therefore essential.

Some protests at ceremonial events I found distasteful. Funeral events should be sacrosanct. There’s much to the maxim that if you can’t say something nice, then best say nothing at all. The contrast between some boorish outbursts and the dignified position adopted by leading Republicans in Northern Ireland was stark.

That said some of the policing did seem heavy handed. Removing individuals from the crowd is one thing both to respect the rights of others and indeed avoid potential clashes. However, the prosecution of individuals for what should be a democratic right’s quite another. This Westminster government has become increasingly authoritarian, but I had expected better here.

A mini budget is set for the end of this week. We’ll see what that brings but the suggestion which has been heavily trailed of a lifting of a cap on bankers bonuses is disgraceful. Salaries for the senior executives in that sector are already significantly more than almost every other walk of life can even dream of. It’s also certainly not reflected in the wages of those who still work in more lowly positions in these banks.

It forgets the devastation of the financial crash which was caused by their greed and avarice. It was the taxpayer that footed the bill. Worsening that, profitable businesses had been deliberately put under in the lust for profits and loyal staff were encouraged to invest their life savings in companies where the senior executives knew disaster was looming.

That those who were culpable are to be rewarded with huge bonuses is simply unacceptable. There are parts of our society where significant investment is needed. That isn’t one. There are people deserving of huge pay increases but it’s not them. Prosecution should have followed for what they did.

Truss’s new right wing regime are rewarding their financial backers and it stinks.