January 2008 Archives

The Mayor of London's Office and Press Office appear to have been infiltrated by Personality Cultists, who are bringing the system into disrepute, with their abuse of public resources to conduct personal attacks and to make threats against their political opponents.

The Evening Standard report last Friday, contains an extraordinary threat:

Whistle-blower to sue Mayor over 'bullying' claims
Andrew Gilligan, Evening Standard

The whistleblower who exposed a key part of the City Hall scandal is to sue Ken Livingstone for libel, the Evening Standard can reveal.

The move comes after the Mayor claimed on BBC radio that Brenda Stern was sacked for bullying her staff.

Ms Stern, a former London Development Agency manager, was forced from her £70,000-a-year job after she complained about serious irregularities in a project run by a friend of the Mayor's equality adviser Lee Jasper.

A complaint of bullying was made against her but in a letter seen by the Standard, LDA chief executive Manny Lewis says the allegation was investigated and was "not founded"


Hopefully Brenda Stern will be awarded a large amount of money and, a public apology from Ken Livingstone personally.

However, more importantly, the article goes on to say:

The Mayor's office hit back, threatening that if Ms Stern sued, the GLA would investigate "other matters" apart from her stint at the LDA, including her past life and previous employment.

Firstly , if there was anything dubious in her previous employment (she is a lawyer who was seconded to the the London Development Agency), it shows GLA incompetence for not checking before employing her in the first place, which seems highly unlikely.

Therefore any such "investigation" must be an attempt to dig up information for a political smear campaign against a whistleblower, thereby abusing the staff and resources paid for by the London taxpayer.

These are the tactics of extremist cults, like the Scientologists or the Moonies etc. and is not how the public employees at City Hall should act, or appear to be acting.

This threat violates even the GLA's own Code of Ethics for Staff (.pdf)

2.3. Proper advice and support

(b) To uphold the political impartiality of the Authority's staff, not to use public
resources for political purposes
and not to act in any way which would conflict
with this Code;

The individual(s) who uttered this threat should be named and shamed, and investigated by the Standards Board for England, for bringing the Office of the Mayor of London into disrepute.

If the GLA is somehow manipulated by Livingstone and his cronies into trying to fund, or allow GLA human or technical resources to be abused in such an ""investigation", this would be a violation by a public authority of the European Convention on Human Rights Article 8, the right to privacy, and therefore against the UK Human Rights Act, and therefore against the GLA's own internal Codes of Conduct and Ethics.

If the individual members of Livingstone's inner circle carry out their threat, they should be investigated by the Police and charged with a criminal offence under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 and / or with Malfeasance in Office.

Even if you are a Labour voter, it must be clear that the current Mayor of London and his clique of cronies must not be allowed back into power this coming May.

Channel 4 tv - is to broadcast a Dispatches documentary, tomorrow at 8pm Monday 21st Jan 2009

These seems set to examine some of Ken Livingstone's record of peculiar policies, broken promises and cronyism. It is also set to look at the Greater London Assembly, which should act as a check and balance on whoever occupies the office of Mayor of London, but which has failed to do so effectively.

Interestingly, the investigative reporter this time, is not from a "right wing" publication like the Evening Standard , but from a "left wing" one, the New Statesman magazine.

See the New Statesman political editor Martin Bright's blog article My questions for Ken

But in the course of my research I came across a blizzard of stories that do not show the mayor in an entirely good light. These include some already in the public domain, such as the cost of foreign trips and the "embassies" set up by the mayor abroad, details of the oil deal with Venezuela's leader, Hugo Chávez, and questions over spending by the London Development Agency. Other stories, including one concerning a campaign against Trevor Phillips, now chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, organised from within City Hall, raise concerns. There are also the curious actions of Livingstone's inner circle of advisers and their idiosyncratic politics. And, inevitably, we looked at the congestion charge.

Perhaps most importantly we examined the office of mayor itself: whether it is institutionally robust and whether any incumbent in the post would be held fully accountable.

Even before it has been transmitted, this tv programme has provoked some Sunday Newspaper articles, and taxpayer funded public relations spin from the Mayor's spin doctors, who appear to be working overtime, regarding the serious allegation that the political appointees and the other appartachiki who are paid to be politically neutral civil servants, were actively campaigning for Livingstone, including fund raising, using GLA / Mayoral offices and equipment , during working hours.

The Sunday Times:

The Observer:

If even left wing, Labour supporting, journalists are starting to question Livingstone's dubious record, will that translate into seeing him lose the May election ?

The latest round in Ken Livingstone's Mayor of London attempt at re-election campaign damage limitation spin, using the incumbent officer holder's
publicly funded media relations department, is to issue another Press Release regarding Livingstone's favourite apparatchik. the Director of Policing and Equalities. Lee Jasper,

Evening Standard allegations of GLA and LDA corruption false 11-1-2008 022

The report has been issued today of the review of allegations of LDA corruption and collusion in improperly awarding funds made by the journalist Andrew Gilligan in the Evening Standard in a series of articles in December 2007.


However, if anyone actually bothers to read past the headline bullet points in the actual LDA Audit Report Schedule details, then these Press Release claims simply look like the South Park tv cartoon Johnnie Cochran Chewbacca Defense i.e. diversionary sleight of hand, focusing on straw man arguments against deliberately twisted modifications of the original newspaper allegations.

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Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers

There are many good people trapped in the bureaucracies which run London. If you are thinking about blowing the whistle on shadowy and powerful people in Government or commerce, and their dubious policies then you need be very careful these days. The mainstream media and bloggers also need to take simple precautions to help preserve the anonymity of their sources e.g.


Wikipedia article on the Mayor of London

Wikipedia article on the London Assembly

The Evening Standard newspaper - fulfills its role by scrutinising the Mayor and the GLA etc. rather more effectively than the politicians and bureaucrats do.

Mayor of London press releases

London Assembly press releases

MayorWatch - commercial news site about the Mayor of London etc.

Campaign Button Links

Watching Them, Watching Us, UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign
UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign

NO2ID - opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card
NO2ID - opposition to NuLabour's plans for Compulsory Biometric ID Card and National Identity Register centralised database.

asboconcern logo
ASBO Concern - alliance of organisations and individuals who are concerned about the abuse of NuLabour's Anti Social Behaviour Orders.

MI5 encrypted contact web form use 999 or 112 to report immediate threats
Encrypted MI5 web response form NuLabour's "Climate of Fear" is not the same as the real fight against terror.

gamesmonitor_logo_150.gif Games Monitor - "Games Monitor is a network of people raising awareness about issues within the London Olympic development processes. We want to highlight the local, London and international implications of the Olympic industry. We seek to deconstruct the 'fantastic' hype of Olympic boosterism and the eager complicity of the 'urban elites' in politics, business, the media, sport, academia and local institutional 'community stakeholders'. "

Peaceful resistance to the curtailment of our rights to Free Assembly and Free Speech in the SOCPA Designated Area around Parliament Square and beyond
Parliament Protest blog - resistance to the Designated Area resticting peaceful demonstrations or lobbying in the vicinity of Parliament.

Save Parliament: Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill (and other issues)
Save Parliament - Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill Act

Ken Livingstone Links

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