Monday, 19 November 2012


We are in strange and uncharted times when virtually every institution on which we’d counted is under attack or rotting to death.

Is it so surprising in our increasingly open society in which the speed of communication is instant, transparency is the norm and there’s an absence of certain things being sacred anymore that one after another the old order is disappearing?

We’re seeing the equivalent of Chalara fraxinea cutting a swathe though, banking, the police, the church, parliament, the BBC, old fashioned media, big tax dodging companies and the offshore rich whose hidden wealth disaffected bankers keep revealing.

If we don’t all of us believe in the power of the people to put the boot in without any fear of reprisal, think again.

An old favourite of mine who in his heyday usually seemed a step ahead, Chris Patten, now seems unable to hold a catch.

The church is bankrupt financially and morally and it’s with concern we even wonder if Justin Welby mightn’t end up like George Entwhistle some 55 days into his archbishopric. (Just don’t let him go on the Today programme – ever).

As the ill attended vote for police commissioners was held we find a lot of old Chief Constables under arrest or being investigated and a bunch of officers in Kent charged with rigging crime figures.

When you can’t trust the police or priests it’s a bit sad. Actually the “trust what they say” figure in the Ipsos Mori Veracity Index 1983 – 2011 shows the clergy have plummeted from 85% believing in their truthfulness to 68% - below doctors (who come top with 88%), teachers, professors, judges and scientists. The police at 63% come next. Vicars used to be way out in front.

And according to You Gov the decline in belief of the BBC journalists to tell the truth fell 13% points in the past fortnight.

Unsurprisingly but depressingly 80% of the public actually expect politicians to lie.

The time has come a bit, like a mugger sidling out of the shadows, when we are all being asked what our values really are.

The God we worship can’t just be profit, votes or share of audience. Over the next few months Google, Amazon, Apple, Starbucks and the rest are going to be hammered. And whistleblowers will make a symphony of sound to rival Eric Whitacre.

Watch that Ipsos Mori Veracity Index – it’s the one that really matters.


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