Atlantic Bridge: all gone quiet over there

Today I make my début on the Guardian’s comment pages and Comment is Free. CiF has something of a reputation for attracting trolls; socially challenged individuals who spend their days posting provocative comments on blogs in an attempt to provoke and upset. So I was interested see how my piece would go down. Well, at the risk of speaking too soon, it appears to me that it’s all gone quiet over there with remarkably few critical comments. Obviously, that’s rather gratifying.

Predictably Joe DeM attempts to draw parallels between the Atlantic Bridge and ‘the network of Trade Unions and left wing charities that fund left wing politicians’. My advice to Joe DeM, and anybody else who believes they have discovered a charity funding politicians, is to report them to the Charity Commission regardless of their political affiliation. In fact, I’d go further: Joe DeM and company have a duty to disclose what they know to the commission and their failure to do so makes them a party to the crimes they allege. The Labour Party’s links to trade unions, on the other hand, are something in which to take pride. Taken together the Labour Party and the unions are the democratic Labour Movement. It is no secret that the unions founded the Labour Party in 1900 to secure political representation for people who work for a living. It is right and proper that unions continue to openly — an important point — support the party and take part in its policy making processes.

The Conservative Party, meanwhile, has a long tradition of sticking up those who are already rich and powerful. Nothing’s changed very much.
Posts on the Atlantic Bridge are collected here.

2 thoughts on “Atlantic Bridge: all gone quiet over there

  1. So – if Atlantic Bridge turns out not to have been charitable, does that mean that donations to it were not charitable?

    And if so, will they have to return any Gift Aid to HMRC? (The Trustees will be personally liable if the charity can’t pay.)

    And would any tax reclaimed by donors (all company donors, and any individuals paying above basic rate) also be recovered by HMRC?

    Or do the rest of us have to pay (through charitable tax breaks) our share of the costs of Werritty’s flights and hotels?

    I think we should be told…

  2. William Hague is quoted in today’s Times as saying he was just a name on the letterhead of Atlantic Bridge – so obviously, not really involved as such. I see his point of view, you couldn’t expect him to know any more about it than the bloke who set up the company, really. This still leeaves George Osborne, but perhaps he was just on the letterhead too, and therefore sort of nothing to do with it either.

    Thank goodness neither Hague nor Osborne can be suspected of having sympathies with the Tea Party or any of those people who believe a national health service is morally wrong, or try to trash environmentalism, etc.

    But I think this should be pointed out much more than it has been – just exactly what Hague, Osborne & Co have been up to is surely of some interest too?

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