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Fraud investigation stopped by Saudi's

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  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    What's the difference between this and a BOGOF offer?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I asked the same question, MoK.

    Aladdin didn't answer, oddly enough.

    For a prosecution to go ahead I believe that there should be a victim- who's the victim in this case? It's certainly no greater waste of money than the loans given to Rover in order to protect jobs.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    Should "the rule of law" be above people's livelihoods, though? It's all well and good lambasting BAE Systems profits, but if they weren't getting the work they wouldn't be making the profits, and if they weren't making the profits they wouldn't have the staff.

    The crime is victimless, and the benefits of the criminal prosecution would by far be negated by the resultant job losses and damage to the UK economy.

    When all said and done, its not as if BAE Systems were raping children in order to get the contract, is it? What's a bit of a bung between friends?


    yes it should be above people's lives that's why it is the rule of law....

    okay having a law to prevent bribery abroad is kind of stupid and hard to enforce, but in the long run anti-corruption measures help in the long run, since they'll make us a reliable trading partner


    should a company director avoid jail for manslaughter for which his direct order caused simply because he helps the economy?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Question that has to be asked is whether anyone from the government who bent the law has benefited from it financially or in status...
    As far as I know, no one has.
    If they had, they that would be obviously wrong.

    As far as the £6bn plane deal, the £6bn is just for the planes. Now looking at the live expectancy of it and possible future orders, that ammount will increase because those planes need to be maintained, repaired, upgraded etc and all that work will be done by the BAE systems.

    But then you can look at it from a different angle. Bungs prevent healthy competition. Bungs mean corruption. Bungs pose a question, where is the line between a harmless bung and a crime?

    If you have time, have a look at Nolan's report for the government from 2003 or something.

    Anyway, it's hard to stamp out corruption if the enforcers are corrupt. So what is the point in arguing???
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    yes it should be above people's lives that's why it is the rule of law...

    Should the law of theft be put above someone who is starving to death?

    Something should only be illegal if there is a victim.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    What's the difference between this and a BOGOF offer?
    Bungs are illegal.

    The Prosecution Service certainly thought there were illegal acts commited.

    Word in Fleet Street is that there was such monumental amount of dirty shit being uncovered that the government had to pull the plug to avoid a lot of red faces and the loss of contracts.

    Frankly I can't believe anyone could possibly have any doubts as to whether any illegal acts might have taken place. It stank to high fucking heaven.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    Should the law of theft be put above someone who is starving to death?
    Oh for fuck's sake...

    I think I want to become a megacorporation boss. That way I can do whatever the fuck I want, and to justify it all I just need to utter the magic words "thousands of jobs will be safeguarded".

    Even if that's not the case at all.

    How many thousands of jobs were lost when Britain stopped selling weapons to Saddam Hussein?

    Well?

    Presumably we should just carried on selling him weapons so he could happily bomb villagers to fuck. At the end of the day, BRITISH JOBS COULD BE AT STAKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (for 'British jobs', read 'profits')
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    So who is the victim if BAE slip a few quid on the side to some sheikh?

    It isn't me, it isn't the sheikh, it isn't BAE systems, and it isn't their staff.

    If there's no victim, what's the justification for the prosecution?

    ETA: I have absolutely no doubt that there was corruption, and that both BAE Systems and the Saudis have made a canny packet in bungs. Most high-level business has survived on bungs since Jesus was a wee nipper. But who gives a toss?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    So who is the victim if BAE slip a few quid on the side to some sheikh?

    It isn't me, it isn't the sheikh, it isn't BAE systems, and it isn't their staff.

    If there's no victim, what's the justification for the prosecution?
    Have you heard of competition and fair trade laws?
    ETA: I have absolutely no doubt that there was corruption, and that both BAE Systems and the Saudis have made a canny packet in bungs. Most high-level business has survived on bungs since Jesus was a wee nipper. But who gives a toss?
    Anyone who has a conscience?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    Have you heard of competition and fair trade laws?

    Yes, I have. Lots of hot air and bullshit.

    Who's the victim?
    Anyone who has a conscience?

    Why is giving some sheikh a hooker in order to secure the deal unconscionable? It isn't.

    This explains it quite well.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    Yes, I have. Lots of hot air and bullshit.
    Well I'm glad to hear you have such regard for large chapters of the Law of the Land.
    Who's the victim?
    Every arms company in Britain and the world which name does not have the initials B, A and E.


    Why is giving some sheikh a hooker in order to secure the deal unconscionable? It isn't.
    Obviously the Crown Prosecution Service, and indeed the laws of the Land think otherwise.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    Every arms company in Britain and the world which name does not have the initials B, A and E.

    Are they?

    The arms trade, like every other business at the highest level, is one big festival of bungs. Everyone knows that. And compared to what the French and US governments do, this is peanuts.
    laws of the Land think otherwise.

    I didn't realise that a piece of paper had cognitive thought. Maybe my desk will decide to clear itself tonight...

    I think we'll have to agree to disagree, but perhaps if people spent less time getting their knickers in a twist about crap like this, and more time being angry about things that actually matter, then the country wouldn't be in such a mess.

    Life's too short to worry about a bit of lubricant that secures a huge contract.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    Bungs are illegal.

    So, again, what is the difference between this )which is considered illegal) and a BOGOF offer (which isn't...?
    Frankly I can't believe anyone could possibly have any doubts as to whether any illegal acts might have taken place. It stank to high fucking heaven.

    Me included. You need to ask if the law in an ass though.
    Have you heard of competition and fair trade laws?

    Yes. Are you suggesting that BAEs size makes a difference here (i.e. they can offer bigger bribes) or that other companies will not offer bribes and are therefore discriminated again?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    Are they?

    The arms trade, like every other business at the highest level, is one big festival of bungs. Everyone knows that. And compared to what the French and US governments do, this is peanuts.
    That is an extremely weak argument when it comes to trying to justify breaking the law.

    Isn't it?


    I didn't realise that a piece of paper had cognitive thought. Maybe my desk will decide to clear itself tonight...

    I think we'll have to agree to disagree, but perhaps if people spent less time getting their knickers in a twist about crap like this, and more time being angry about things that actually matter, then the country wouldn't be in such a mess.

    Life's too short to worry about a bit of lubricant that secures a huge contract.
    Is life too short to worry about financial blackmail of a sovereign country's government by a bunch of currupt theocrat nutters, and more importantly by the disgraceful surrender and the worrying contempt for the Law by the said government? I don't think it is.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    So, again, what is the difference between this )which is considered illegal) and a BOGOF offer (which isn't...?
    Why are you asking me? I didn't make the laws.

    The laws stll exist, and they should not be disregarded for the sake of financial gain.


    Me included. You need to ask if the law in an ass though.
    It might well be but it is not the government's place to flaunt them because there's money at stake.

    Regardless of the money at stake, that sets an indescribably dangerous and nauseating precedent.


    Yes. Are you suggesting that BAEs size makes a difference here (i.e. they can offer bigger bribes) or that other companies will not offer bribes and are therefore discriminated again?
    No. I'm suggesting that illegal transactions took place that gave BAE unfair advantage.

    It couldn't be simpler in my eyes. Nor in the eyes of the prosecution service I should think.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    Why are you asking me? I didn't make the laws.

    No, but you are raising concerns about one and haven't ever raised the other which is clearly made on the same basis. You could include loss leaders into that category too - such as the way that companies like Tesco and Asda will sell their petrol cheaper because it gets people into their stores...

    Surely the issue here isn't one about how it is a rich person who has benefitted from an offer rather than Joe Average...?
    The laws stll exist, and they should not be disregarded for the sake of financial gain.

    Doesn't "public interest" apply for all enforcement of laws?
    No. I'm suggesting that illegal transactions took place that gave BAE unfair advantage.

    Only if no-one else tried/wanted to take the same stance. If all bidders offered bribes then one would have to ask if any unfair advantage was actually gained.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    No, but you are raising concerns about one and haven't ever raised the other which is clearly made on the same basis. You could include loss leaders into that category too - such as the way that companies like Tesco and Asda will sell their petrol cheaper because it gets people into their stores...

    Surely the issue here isn't one about how it is a rich person who has benefitted from an offer rather than Joe Average...?
    The real issue here is bending the law for the sake of financial gain.

    This has clearly happened. And it is unnaceptable.


    Doesn't "public interest" apply for all enforcement of laws?
    If only there had been any public interest, rather than financial gain by a private corporation.


    Only if no-one else tried/wanted to take the same stance. If all bidders offered bribes then one would have to ask if any unfair advantage was actually gained.
    We shall never know shall we?

    Bottom line is, the law doesn't care for 'what ifs' or 'the others would have done the same'.

    BAE by all accounts conducted illegal operations. It was indescribably wrong of the government to halt the inquiry. It makes a mockery of the law and indeed of Great Britain.

    How can we look at any regime on earth on the face, no matter how dodgy they might be, and complain about 'corruption' and 'irregularities' remains to be seen. By interfering with the rule of law for the sake of financial gain we're no better than a banana republic.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    Are they?

    The arms trade, like every other business at the highest level, is one big festival of bungs. Everyone knows that. And compared to what the French and US governments do, this is peanuts.



    I didn't realise that a piece of paper had cognitive thought. Maybe my desk will decide to clear itself tonight...

    I think we'll have to agree to disagree, but perhaps if people spent less time getting their knickers in a twist about crap like this, and more time being angry about things that actually matter, then the country wouldn't be in such a mess.

    Life's too short to worry about a bit of lubricant that secures a huge contract.

    so it's okay to bribe?

    why not spend that bung money on actually making a product that would be worth buying....
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Lots of laws are ignored- Aladdin for one campaigns regularly for the police to ignore the anti-drug laws and lambasts them when they don't- and I fail to see what the problem with this one being ignored. The saudis get their hookers, BAE Systems get their contract, and the businesses reliant on BAE Systems get their turkey this Christmas.

    It's not a matter of the product being "worth buying"- one gun is very much like another- its about the incentives deal being right. People shop at Tesco instead of the corner shop because they give us a "bung" (BOGOF, loss-leading items), and the Saudis shopped at BAE because they gave the best bung. Big deal.

    It's only an "unfair advantage" if your competitors don't do it- and they do- so where's the issue? And if the Saudi government are making contractual decisions based on bungs then that is a matter for the Saudis not us.

    Yet again the rest of the world is laughing at us for almost letting a stupid bit of trivia destroy one of the biggest business deals we have. The French couldn't wait for us to cock it up again, just like we've cocked up all the other businesses we have.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    Lots of laws are ignored- Aladdin for one campaigns regularly for the police to ignore the anti-drug laws and lambasts them when they don't- and I fail to see what the problem with this one being ignored.
    A multi-million, multi-nation corruption scandal at the detriment of countless companies in Britain and abroad is a tad more serious than a lad being caught with a couple grams of charlie, don't you think?
    The saudis get their hookers, BAE Systems get their contract, and the businesses reliant on BAE Systems get their turkey this Christmas.
    And everyone's happy.

    Yipee!

    Pass me that law book please, I've run out of toilet paper.
    It's not a matter of the product being "worth buying"- one gun is very much like another- its about the incentives deal being right. People shop at Tesco instead of the corner shop because they give us a "bung" (BOGOF, loss-leading items), and the Saudis shopped at BAE because they gave the best bung. Big deal.
    The CPS obviously thought it was a big deal.
    It's only an "unfair advantage" if your competitors don't do it- and they do- so where's the issue? And if the Saudi government are making contractual decisions based on bungs then that is a matter for the Saudis not us.
    Why don't you ask their competitors? You are assuming too easily that they offered bungs.

    Besides, a small firm is going to have little chance of competing in equal terms with a mega-corporation like BAE if it all comes down to briefcases stuffed full with money, isn't it?

    I can't fucking believe I'm the one who doesn't like capitalism here and find myself one of two people defending the rule of law to ensure fair competition and honest dealings.
    Yet again the rest of the world is laughing at us for almost letting a stupid bit of trivia destroy one of the biggest business deals we have. The French couldn't wait for us to cock it up again, just like we've cocked up all the other businesses we have.
    No. The rest of the world laughs and shakes their head at our spineless government lowering its trousers and bending over in front of yet another dodgy government.

    Whether it be imperialistic semi-literate chimps or torturing theocrat dictators, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland can be counted upon to break the law for the sake of profits and backhanders.

    A fine example we're setting for others.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Incidentally, it really makes me laugh when from time to time someone says this forum is left-leaning. Judging by the responses on this thread the balance is so overwhelmingly to the right I'm surprised the whole screen isn't tilted 90 degrees.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    I can't fucking believe I'm the one who doesn't like capitalism here and find myself one of two people defending the rule of law to ensure fair competition and honest dealings.

    And those things generally apply in the UK. However, business is done differently in other parts of the world and you don't get anywhere in a lot of countries without bribes. Not an ideal situation I admit but would you rather Britain misses out on lucrative trade with the Saudis? Lets be clear, the Saudis aren't the only ones who do business this way...If we demanded all foreign trade is free of bribes and bungs we wouldn't be doing much trade at all.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Actually yes, when it comes to dodgy dictatorships and when the trading involved is weapons, I'd rather we didn't deal with them at all.

    Labour claimed it had just such aims in 1997. Shame on them for lying.

    Saddam Hussein comes to mind. But the lessons of dealing with unpleasant regimes apparently haven't been learnt by many others. People appear to suffer temporary blindness (not to mention conscience failure) when dollar signs flash before their eyes.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    Actually yes, when it comes to dodgy dictatorships and when the trading involved is weapons, I'd rather we didn't deal with them at all.

    Fair enough. Although, this fraud investigation was not about whether it is right to sell weapons to Saudi Arabia or not.
    Aladdin wrote:
    Labour claimed it had just such aims in 1997. Shame on them for lying.

    I guess Labour did promise a lots of things in 1997.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    Actually yes, when it comes to dodgy dictatorships and when the trading involved is weapons, I'd rather we didn't deal with them at all.

    Labour claimed it had just such aims in 1997. Shame on them for lying.

    Saddam Hussein comes to mind. But the lessons of dealing with unpleasant regimes apparently haven't been learnt by many others. People appear to suffer temporary blindness (not to mention conscience failure) when dollar signs flash before their eyes.

    What did we learn from Saddam Hussein? We all knew that the Russians would sell to anyone and the French are pretty much the same. We also knew that Russian equipment is crap. We also knew that if you have to smuggle in spare parts under the guise of pretending its the food and medicine you're allowed to buy for your people that you're not going to have enough equipment to fully re-equip.

    We also knew that its useful to have regional allies such as the Saudi's using equipment and doctrine which is close to ours.

    I'm not sure any of this supports your argument....
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Well one thing you could learn from the Hussein fiasco is that it ultimately doesn't pay to arm unpleasant regimes as they might one day turn on their masters, or it might become politically convenient to remove them. There is also the moral issue of providing weapons to regimes with poor human rights records.

    Let's hope no British soldiers will ever be killed with British built-and-provided Saudi warplanes. Then again British civilians have in the past been tortured abroad with British-built electric batons so I guess we'd only be continuing a time-honoured tradition.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Aladdin wrote:
    Well one thing you could learn from the Hussein fiasco is that it ultimately doesn't pay to arm unpleasant regimes as they might one day turn on their masters, or it might become politically convenient to remove them. There is also the moral issue of providing weapons to regimes with poor human rights records.

    Er, but it was the US and UK who removed him, not those who armed him (ie Russia, France and China)
    Let's hope no British soldiers will ever be killed with British built-and-provided Saudi warplanes. Then again British civilians have in the past been tortured abroad with British-built electric batons so I guess we'd only be continuing a time-honoured tradition

    If the UK didn't sell them them the French would. So lets say in the future that UK and Saudi look like they're going to war. UK stops selling Saudi the spares - planes grounded. UK and Saudi go to war, France continues to sell spares - more UK soldiers die.

    That's the trouble with ethical foreign policy - once you look beyond the headlines it tends to be as ethical as fuck....
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I cannot believe you guys are having a go at Alladin for having principles!!
    Ridicilous!

    He is absolutely right. Just because everyone does bungs, it don't mean that it should be accepted as a norm.
    Yes, everyone knows how things work in some parts of the world, but if a government promises you during an election campaign that it will be "PURER THAN PURE" then you have every right to question their motives for cancelling this inverstigation. My hunch is that the investigation was stopped because someone up high has or will financially benefit from the deal.
    Everything else is horseshit.

    By the way, when and how will UK ever go into war with Saudi Arabia???
    Be realistic...
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