Just for once this won’t be about CallMeDave and the government. Well, not all about them. These two stories are in many ways even more offensive than the activities of that bunch of robber barons.
First up, the Queen’s 90th birthday celebrations. A party is being organised, though in proper haughty manner it’s being referred to as a ‘Patron’s Lunch.’ That’s posh isn’t it? Designed to cow the proles, isn’t it? Attendees will be garnered from the ranks of people who work for charities of which the Queen is a patron. All well and good, a bit of recognition of all the years of hard graft.
Except it won’t be. Because tickets to this little shindig roll in at an eye-watering 150 quid a head. That’s quite a lot for a Marks and Spencer ‘hamper’ lunch and a plastic rain poncho. It’s certainly a lot of money if you happen to work for one of those really tiny, cash-strapped charities where you have to watch the pennies closely.
However, regal help is generously at hand. If you’re short of wonga, you can sell on up 40% of your ticket allocation to the highest bidder (presumably). So instead of being attended by people who earned the right to be there because they spend all-nighters nursing sick children back to health, this shindig will become yet another corporate jolly for the rich and privileged. The only positive aspect is that the proceeds will swell your depleted coffers a bit.
I forgot to mention that there will be 1000 tables of 10. That’s £1.5M people will have to dosh out. To attend a party given by one of the richest people in the world. I always thought that if you threw a party you footed the bill, particularly when you can probably find that sort of money down the back of your sofa.
I wonder if CMD will be there? If he is, he’ll be claiming the 150 nicker on his exes, so the taxpayer will end up coughing up for a rich toff to go to a gathering of other rich toffs. We’ll also end up footing the bill for the massive security operation that will be involved.
The best bit of the whole affair is this. The bash is being organised by an outfit called Sports&Entertainment Limited. The head honcho there is Peter Phillips. If you don’t know who the hell he is, then let me lead you to the Fountain of Truth. He’s the Queen’s grandson.
Let’s now journey to the small market town of Crickhowell in Wales. Traders and shopkeepers here, enraged by the way that Google, Amazon, Café Nero, facebook et al don’t pay UK taxes, formed a cooperative. All the profits made by commerce in the town now get dumped offshore, so the tax liability is virtually zero. Good luck to them.
Enter now another robber baron, one Lord Crickhowell. He’s a supertoff who gets paid 300 quid a day plus expenses just for signing the register at the House of Lords. Seeing that Crickhowell is his manor, you might expect him to be applauding the ingenuity of the good burghers of the town. Not a bit of it.
He’s been emailing one of the organisers, Steve Lewis, advising him and the rest to stop attacking the Chancellor, George Osborne. Yep. Instead of applauding them, he’s castigating them. But not for the scheme itself. For having the sheer effrontery to attack one of his toff cronies in the other House. Instead of joining in and getting Gorgeous George to get off his fat toff arse do something positive against the tax-dodging corporate parasites, he’s saying, ‘Don’t be so beastly to my chum.’
Mr Lewis is having none of it. He’s going to take the big boys to court, which will in turn mean Gorgeous George getting up on his hindlegs, along with CMD, and explaining exactly why Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs haven’t been nailing the brigands, while coming down really hard on cab drivers who don’t declare all their tips.