Wednesday, 26 January 2011

FAITH & FINANCE - Richard Murphy’s view…

We return to this series by interviewing Richard Murphy.

He is a Chartered Accountant who has worked in the Finance world and as an auditor, besides other business activities. He is a married with children, lives in Norfolk and has a wide-ranging interest in socio-political matters, speaking regularly at meetings with diverse organisations in the UK and overseas.

He is well known at Westminster, the EU and in other important forums and is a frequent contributor to leading newspapers, journals, and commentator on radio and television.

He has (so far) resisted invitations to stand for election as an M.P. to Parliament.

Norway currently funds his campaigning activities because the government of that country is so opposed to the avoidance of taxes through tax havens.

So far as Jersey is concerned, he is mostly known as the man who advised against adopting the failed Zero-Ten policy and as a campaigner against the abusive, roles of tax havens world-wide.

As a financial dissenter and because our government does not like to be exposed as wrong, Richard Murphy is not at all popular with our senior Ministers or within the Finance Sector.

His contributions to the TAX RESEARCH here and TAX JUSTICE NETWORK here blog-sites are very well respected sources of data, information and comment on international finance and the dubious dealings of super-rich individuals, corporations and governments.

Not so well known is that Richard Murphy is a church going Anglican Christian with a Quaker background. He takes his faith seriously and explains here how this is central to his campaigning activities.

We caught up with Richard Murphy in Jersey during his January visit when he spoke in public and met with States Members.

We thank ATTAC Jersey, Ted Vibert of the JDA and Time4Change for their assistance in bringing Richard Murphy to Jersey and facilitating the interview.

Submitted by Thomas Wellard.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Jersey Homebuyers scheme – another cock-up?

We take a break from our Faith & Finance series to return to Jersey’s never ending housing problems.

After attending the first two days of the Public Accounts Committee scrutiny hearings looking at the Homebuyer scheme at La Providence, Goose Green – we have taken the opportunity to speak with Deputy Sean Power, the Housing Minister.

He was sitting among the public today so did not participate in the discussions with Senator Shenton and his team, but feel sure that this scrutiny will grind-on for some time – with nobody taking any blame eventually – but we shall have to wait and see.

Future meetings of the Committee are likely to engage with the Crown Officers and the advice they gave, so it is likely that the plebs like us will be excluded from those sessions.

When Senator Shenton led the scrutiny into the euro/sterling arrangements for the Incinerator nobody was ever held liable in public. A behind the scenes censure was discreetly arrived at and the justification of a swanking new and necessary public facility is the official line.

We suspect that much the same will come from this – 46 families happily housed, so what’s the problem? – the usual PR approach of turning a disaster into a celebration.

We shall see – if not hear – what happens in due course.

In the meantime – somebody has to fund 4,000 new homes under the next 10 years Island Plan so the Homebuyer scheme will need to be sorted out soon….

And as for the 10,000 working adult residents who still do not even have housing quals…well hear what Deputy Power says here.

Your comments on these housing related issues are welcome.

Submitted by Thomas Wellard.