Thursday, February 07, 2008

Brown admits that he is...

... a lying sack of shit, in the court case that I referred to earlier today. Trixy is in the courtroom.
In the court case brought against Brown for breach of contract over a referendum on the EU Constitution, Brown's personal barrister has just told the court that "manifesto pledges are not subject legitimate expectation".

Oh yes, Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister, has just told an open court that we shouldn't expect him to be telling the truth with his promises, and that no manifesto pledge can be considered to be binding in anyway.

Let me remind you that we live in a representative democracy. Indeed, many of those who are opposed to a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty EU Constitution, have advanced the idea of "representative democracy" as a justification for not having said referendum.

The manifesto that politicians put forward before elections is the way in which they represent themselves to the electorate. If those manifesto pledges mean nothing—if "manifesto pledges are not subject legitimate expectation"—then how, precisely, have these fuckers represented themselves to us?

"With lies," is the answer. If the manifesto means nothing then these MPs have not actually represented themselves to the public at all and thus they have absolutely no legitimacy whatsoever.

What this means is that we are not living in a representative democracy, because the politicians have not represented themselves to us, the voters. In fact, they have made false representations which is fraud.

Here is the relevant extract from the Fraud Act 2006 [PDF].
  1. Fraud by false representation
    1. A person is in breach of this section if he—
      1. dishonestly makes a false representation, and

      2. intends, by making the representation—
        1. to make a gain for himself or another, or

        2. to cause loss to another or to expose another to a risk of loss.

    2. A representation is false if—
      1. it is untrue or misleading, and

      2. the person making it knows that it is, or might be, untrue or misleading.

    3. “Representation” means any representation as to fact or law, including a representation as to the state of mind of—
      1. the person making the representation, or

      2. any other person.

    4. A representation may be express or implied.

    5. For the purposes of this section a representation may be regarded as made if it (or anything implying it) is submitted in any form to any system or device designed to receive, convey or respond to communications (with or without human intervention).

Well, I reckon that you have Gordon under 2/1/a & c/i: "to make a gain for himself". Private prosecution, anyone?

Now, what, I wonder, is the maximum penalty for fraud by false representation?

12 comments:

Edwin Hesselthwite said...

Hey Mr Devil... Just summoning your attention to a post I just stuck up on a long-running argument I've had with you... It's over here. Cheers, and sorry for the spam.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Edwin,

Nae bother, matey. I'll go and have a read (the monarchy again, I assume?)...

DK

Trixy said...

What is truly astonishing is that many sections of the press do not think that's it's a worthy news story....

Rob said...

I'm sure you can tell us what his sentence should be.

Something to do with a short rope and a long drop I imagine...

Devil's Kitchen said...

Yes: rope, lamp-post, Gordon, some assembly required.

So yes, Rob, you were spot on...

DK

Surreptitious Evil said...

Much as I would like Rob to be correct, it is actually 10 (okay, 5) years - the Fraud Act 2006, again:

(3) A person who is guilty of fraud is liable—

...

(b) on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years or to a fine (or to both).

Unity said...

I hate to break the news folks, but Gordon is entirely correct is his assertion that manifesto pledges do not give rise to 'legitimate expectations'.

He's speaking in a court room, where the term 'legitimate expectations' has a precise legal meaning and using the term in its legal context.

All he's actually said (correctly) is that because a referendum would require specific primary legislation - there is no general power to call a referendum in law - a manifesto commitment cannot be held as a guarantee that a referendum will be held because parliament may not be willing to pass the necessary Act of Parliament to make it happen.

If the court agrees with that argument - and there's every chance it will - then its case over as the plaintiff will have failed to show the necessary legal grounds for a judicial review.

Pip said...

"manifesto pledges are not subject legitimate expectation".

If this is the case, and I appreciate Unity's point about The Gobblin' King's legalistic sophistry, why then is it that when they don't get their way because they can't carry the day in the House of Lords are they able to invoke the Parliament Act because their desired legislation was a manifesto pledge?

Not another case of having their cake and eating it too surely?

Not a sheep said...

As sure as eggs are eggs, no prosecution would be proceeded with because "it would not be in the public interest". Isn't living in a democracy great!

Unity said...

>>> why then is it that when they don't get their way because they can't carry the day in the House of Lords are they able to invoke the Parliament Act because their desired legislation was a manifesto pledge?

Because the Commons has legislative primacy over the Lords.

The Lords are a secondary issue here, however, because before you have to worry about the Lords voting a bill down you have to, first, get it through the Commons.

Unity said...

>>> As sure as eggs are eggs, no prosecution would be proceeded with because "it would not be in the public interest". Isn't living in a democracy great!

Actually, from what I've read, the court actually ruled out a judicial review on the basis that the consequences of a decision on whether to hold a referendum or not are political and not legal - which is correct.

What would be undemocratic is if the courts began to overturn political decisions without having a clear foundation in law for doing so.

IanP said...

If Brown wins the current court case, that will establish in law his defence.

That in turn will leave EVERY Labour MP open to charges of Fraud, as their £60,000 MP's salary is gain if obtained falsely.

Perhaps a fighting fund is needed to pick them off one by one.