Skip to content

Who’s going to tell him?

For obvious reasons, I had a quick look at the accounts for the Post Office this morning

Let me summarise its situation in a word: it’s bust.

So, everyone is on the hook for what happens at the Post Office except the directors.

That is what modern capitalism is all about: reward without responsibility.

It’s a government owned company……

13 thoughts on “Who’s going to tell him?”

  1. I’ve already posted this in another blog here , but it’s so lovely it bears reposting so you don’t miss it. I’m assuming Joe is sincere. However, if he’s from hereabouts, my congratulations!

    Joe Polito says:
    January 10 2024 at 1:25 pm
    Richard, at times your blogs are like watching Tiger Woods play golf at his best – takes our breath away.

  2. Actually he is sort of right.
    In Clown World modern big businesses, regardless of being state or private corporations are characterised by cronyism,deaf and blind management and reward for failure.

    I worked( as a contractor) at a company a few years ago, where the conditions on the directors’ bonuses were changed from how much profit the compan made ( ie none ) to how much they could save – using the simple expedient of sacking everyone.

  3. Some of these directors were senior civil servants, a class who, according to Spud, should make any and all decisions about everything.

  4. Bloke in North Dorset

    Let me summarise its situation in a word: it’s bust.

    IANAL but AIUI the only thing keeping the management from trading insolvently is an unlimited guarantee to cover all creditors?

    The sensible thing to do in that case is either shut it down or try to sell it, no point throwing good tax payers’ money after bad.

    I’m not holding my breath.

  5. I have to echo the near peerless Great Ottokring:

    It’s not quite stopped clock territory but he does diagnose a key issue – total lack of accountability at directorial or equivalent level is common to both private and public sectors.

    Where his diagnosis obviously falls down is drawing from that the lesson that the state therefore needs to ‘do even more’ when the key thing is to reduce it in size and power.

  6. “Who’s Going To Tell Him” – that would be a neoliberal plot to introduce fascism by the back door. Down with that sort of thing.

  7. Theophrastus (2066)

    “It’s a government owned company”…
    So it is likely to have the worst features of the private and public sectors. There’s ittle hybrid vigour in such entities.

  8. BiND

    “IANAL but AIUI the only thing keeping the management from trading insolvently is an unlimited guarantee to cover all creditors?”

    Was it today or yesterday that Ritchie suggested this as a solution?

  9. I still say no-one will do time for all of this, certainly none of the top brass. The innocent postmasters will (finally) be exonerated, and hopefully have some money (probably not enough in many cases) thrown at them. Mr Bates will probably get a gong (which he should throw in their faces – if it was me I’d accept it, and then when Jug Ears is about hand it out do a father’s for justice style rant at him for being the face of the establishment who handed one out to Vennells, and throw the medal on the floor in front of him and storm out) but thats about it.

    Because I can’t see how the judicial system is ever going to throw the book at any given individuals. Pretty much everyone at the top will be able to argue ‘I didn’t know, I’m not an IT expert, I took advice, which turned out to be wrong’. The people at the IT coal face who probably did know the system was shonky may be able to argue they did tell people but were ignored. If anyone gets nailed it’ll be some poor lower middle management type, if the prosecution can manage to find an individual who was both informed from below there was a problem and then told the higher-ups everything was hunky dory. I can’t see how a court is going to convict the senior management when they were being told everything was great. Now its obvious that they should have been asking questions, but not asking questions isn’t the same thing as knowing it was a problem and lying about it.

    The problem seems to be that the whole organisation was corrupted, in such a way that while its obvious that was the case, pinning the blame on any given individual is going to be impossible, when you have to prove it in court beyond reasonable doubt. The courts don’t do ‘slam them all in jail pour encourager les autres’, for very good reasons, which in our zeal to get revenge we are forgetting here.

    Hence my argument that modern capitalism is corrupted, because the limited liability company allows people to walk away from the consequences of their actions, or the actions of those they employ. Make the owners of a business bear the full responsibility, and you’ll see a LOT more care being taken as to how companies behave.

  10. Cocking it up isn’t a crime, nor is not asking the right questions. What is going to turn out as the true crime worth prosecuting is lying under oath and conspiring to pervert the course of justice by withholding evidence from the defence or trying to get rid of a judge. Most of the guilty will get away with it.

  11. “Amazing how many strict liability crimes there are, then…”

    They are for the little people, natch………

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *