COLUMN: The Ely Grumpster

The Ely Grumpster

The Ely Grumpster - Credit: Archant

The Ely Grumpster

• This week’s missive is named “the good, the bad and the ugly”. The title is a nod to one of my heroes, Clint Eastwood. The content is a mix of the inspirational and the downright depressing. Let’s start in reverse - good last. Reason? Good things should always follow the bad, like a chicken naga at Le Spice after one of Doris’ lentil bake and soggy sweet potato chip catastrophes.

• Ugly? a true rogue’s gallery of British politicians from both the left and right. To start, BREXIT-related access for cash. Naively, I thought the code of conduct had consigned this Hamiltonesque misbehaviour to the bin, but clearly not. Lord Andrew Lansley, Peter “creepy” Lilley and Andrew Mitchell offering their services at four to five thousand pounds a day to a Chinese industrial firm trying to “cash in” on BREXIT. Unfortunately for our greedy trio, it was a Dispatches/Sunday Times sting operation. Oh dear boys. No brown envelopes for you.

• Next up, the revolting Jayda Fransen and Paul Golding, of Britain First, currently on trial for religiously aggravated harassment. Finally, let’s put our hands together for Labour NEC (aka Momentum) who have re-admitted to membership the grotesque holocaust denier Mike Silvier. He even wrote a book defending Ken Livingstone’s views on Hitler and Zionism. Delightful chap.

• Bad? Well unsurprisingly, old carpet-tile head Trump merits a mention. A top professional golfer, Suzann Pettersen, accused him of “cheating like hell” at golf, backed up by Samuel L Jackson, Alice Cooper and Oscar de la Hoya. Not exactly a capital offence, but golf is one of last true bastions of sporting honesty and Trump has despoiled even that. A close second is KPMG and Deloitte. KPMG signed off Carillion’s accounts. Deloitte, as internal auditor, was responsible for ensuring risk management and governance procedures were robust. Well that was money well spent!

• Good? I managed to escape the daily work grind to attend a talk by a 93 year old holocaust survivor, Harry Jacobi. In 1939, as a boy of 15, he escaped from Berlin to Holland, only to have to flee again on a ship, when the Nazis swept through the low counties in 1940. He survived, despite the ship being strafed. Most of his family was murdered in Sobibor. For a man who has suffered so much, there was little trace of bitterness. A truly inspirational character. Hats off to you Harry.