Politicians seem to have every conceivable vice possible: cheating on their expenses, accused of perjury, covering up scandals, sexually harassing women, and telling the public lies while keeping a straight face as if everything is permissible in their quest to remain in power.
Flicking through my morning papers at 6am every day, I am astounded by the number of news items which lead to some errant politician or a political aspect of something which is not what it seems to be. The moral standing of our society has been badly bruised by people in government – or in influential positions throughout the land – whose sole motivation appears to be an amalgam of money and power.
The Liberal Democrats are now involved in a sex scandal where at least ten women claim the party’s chief executive molested them and the Lib-Dem leader’s private office knew all about it.
Nick Clegg, whose influence in the party has dwindled over the past year, is now facing a scandal which may topple him. Lord Rennard, the accused, is a formidable figure who played a leading part in the modern revival of the Liberal Democrats. He has been called the ‘Mystic Meg’ of voting prediction and the by-election wizard. Inevitably, given his surname and wily stratagems, the nickname most often applied was ‘The Fox’. Well the fox, funnily enough, is not a favoured animal at the moment for kidnapping babies and that might cynically apply to Lord Rennard.
His departure is likely to cause tremors throughout the rank and file and will undeniably lead to turmoil and dissension in an already divided party, which is on the verge of falling into an abyss of political wilderness.
The coalition government, which is hanging on by its eyelashes, is bound to feel an added pressure to remain a coherent power-sharing entity if the Liberal Democrats were to disintegrate as a result of this diabolical scandal.
In the midst of it all, the prime minister and his far from enterprising chancellor, who have to deal with a worsening economy, must feel the draft of a chilly wind coming our way from Siberia. I hope they are warmly dressed to avoid a further unexpected ill wind to paralyse the nation.
I wish them both well although the omens are not in the least encouraging. They have too many irons in the fire – some will burn.