Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Corruption on Both Sides of the Pond

On the whole I prefer I prefer American sitcoms and I certainly prefer American corruption. Over there, a curious entity called, implausibly, Rod Blagojevich is accused of trying to sell Obama's senate seat. Since, until Rod came along, I didn't even know seats could be allocated in this way, I feel he has taught me something. Also, since he plainly models his look on Roy Orbison, I feel he has a certain sense of history. Over here we have an entity called, implausibly, Lord Taylor of Blackburn, who is denying he was prepared to accept money for helping along changes in the law. (The offer was, of course, made by my guys at The Sunday Times. I feel privileged to know them because, I feel safe when accepting bribes knowing the briber is not one of their number.) Lord Taylor of Blackburn does not look like Roy Orbison. He looks like Blackburn on January 18th, it's raining and somebody just nicked your car.


  1. Roy Orbison? I think he looks like the guy in the Just For Men ad.

    I don't know who Taylor looks like, apart from every northerner's dad, but I do now wonder if the NHS ever did aviator frames...

  2. Yes, "Lord Taylor of Blackburn" is an insultingly prosaic title. No wonder he turned bad.

    I'm not surprised Lords Snape and Moonie are involved either. They're both in Slytherin and the former killed Dumbledore for goodness' sake - it should have been staring us in the face.

    Contrast with the goodies in this saga: Lord Irvine of Lairg, Baroness Manningham-Buller, Baroness Royall of Blaisdon, and above all, the mighty Lord Brabazon of Tara. All proper Gryffindor names, we need to pay much more attention to the Sorting Hat in future.

  3. I'd opt for Lord Deliverous of Evil.

  4. "Lord Brabazon of Tara" sounds pretty good. But eclipsed by a (possible?) forebear: Hercules Brabazon Brabazon who said he lived for "art and sunshine". As names go, that's about as good as it gets.

    Here's an idea for reform. Why not make the House of Lords open only to folks who've inherited their title as these are all likely to be "mighty" names? That way, those with names that smack of envelopes can be kept out, together with those who look like Eddie Izzard after an electric shock, like "Lord" Moonie.

  5. Its less embarrassing to be shacked down by a Roy Orbison lookalike than an OAP.

    As soon as the "muck" hits the fan expect to see him in a wheelchair with a bib on.

  6. Don't you just love Eliza Manningham-Buller. You don't have to see her to conjure up an exact picture of what someone with a name like that might be like.

    Mark, I like your reform idea but can we add a little tweaker? Only Lords who inherited a title created before 1832.

    Lord Taylor of Blackburn sounds like some dodgy mens outfitters from the '70s.

  7. It's always raining in Blackburn and someone has always stolen your car. Furthermore, while you're standing aghast at the space where your care was parked, a goucher comes up to you and tells you he's just been released from hospital and has bills to pay and if you could just see your way clear to giving him some spare change he can take the bus home rather than, presumably, living in the centre of Blackburn.

  8. Titles are never given to committees, wouldn't it be hilarious, 'morning lord bung, hello lady bung, any tea left lord bung, and so it would go on around all twelve members, forever. Punishment fitting the crime, tra la.

    Lots of numbers in corruption, a German once gave me the low down on bunging the Chinese and how to get 200000 dmarks through the companies books and into the Chinkie generals Hong Kong bank account without anyone noticing, fascinating, absorbing, all helps to oil the wheels of commerce. Wouldn't recommend it though can't get very far on dmarks these days.
    Blackburn, isn't that a steel stockholder surrounded by houses?