Friday, March 03, 2006
A bed-time story about Three little Bears.
Daddy Bear (played by the masked Mr.B.) is a secretive Italian V.I.P Bear. He doesn't have a speaking part in this narrative.
Millsy Bear (played confidently by David Mills) is an important International Lawyer who specialises in Tax Avoidance schemes for rich clients.
Baby Bear (played winsomely by Tessa Jowell - she's so sweet) is a young innocent housewife who doesn't *do* paperwork (except in heavy red despatch boxes) and signs any form her husbands asks her to sign for him, "...without question, Dahling."
This bed-time story has lots of twists and turns, so the *elevator pitch* (this could be a film script, you know) goes as follows:
- Once upon a time, Millsy Bear is given a gift of £344,000 for *special* favours to an Italian V.I.P. Bear.
- Millsy Bear (also husband of a Cabinet Minister) spends some time trying to pursuade Inland Revenue that this money was a gift and not taxable.
- Eventually, Millsy B. agrees to pay tax on this sum of money, which has been filtered (anonymised ?) through a series of complex hedge funds and offshore trust funds.
- Mr. and Mrs. Millsy B. serially mortgage and redeem mortgage charges on their houses. Often mortgaging and then paying off mortgages within weeks. Very *New Labour*, are these kinds of mortgages. Especially when Millsy Bear want to *invest* in serial get-rich-quick money-washing schemes.
- Meanwhile, Mr and Mrs Millsy Bear (Baby Bear - aka Culture Secretary) never discuss this large sum (£344,000) of money over breakfast, lunch or pillow talk. "...Oh, No. Dahling. Never, Ever."
- Suddenly, the Big Bad Wolf (aka media/press) realises that all these old folk tales about Millsy Bear and his rich clients who dispense their largesse in large wads of cash, must be true, because Baby Bear (aka Culture Secretary) is busily signing mortgage forms for Millsy Bear; as a means of helping to siphon offshore funds into UK and vice-versa.
- Baby Bear (a real-life VIP Cabinet Minister) is never aware of potential conflicts of interest, because she simply has no idea where all this money is coming from. The money simply roars in and out of their bank accounts like a series of monetary tsunami's.
- "...Doesn't everyone have money swilling around their Trust Funds, Dahling ?"
REAL LIFE (TM).
Ms Jowell told Sir Gus O'Donnell, she had first become aware in August 2004 that her husband had received a sum of money (£344,000) in September 2000 "which he thought he had reasonable grounds to believe was a gift".
The moral of this story is...
- If you are ever given a large sum (£344,000) of money as A GIFT.
- and you stick to the fairy story script
- and you have friends in high places
- and you are a clever VIP politician, with heavy red VIP despatch boxes
- and you have the ear and heart-strings of a very sympathetic Prime Minister (Billy -No Mates- Bear)
- and the Ministerial Code (for Cabinet Ministers) is quietly shredded to tiny, tiny, invisible ickle pieces.
Although, a week is a lifetime in politics!
That's blummin' classic, that is.
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