Thoughts from an active pensioner who is now somewhat past his Biblical "Use-by date"

"Why just be difficult, when with a little more effort you can be bloody impossible?"

Monday, 2 December 2013

Dominic Grieve QC MP

My MP is Dominic Grieve QC, the Attorney General. Until recently he was known by many of us locally as the invisible, silent MP, in that unlike other members of the cabinet he was very rarely in the news. But suddenly, he's in the news! Apart from the fact that he has appeared in person at various High/Supreme Court hearings, which seems to be rather unusual in itself, he has been making the headlines with a couple of rather contentious speeches.
First he criticises the Asian community, and specifically the Pakistani community, of being responsible for the increasing corruption in this country, and in particular for electoral fraud, for which he was roundly condemned by the PC brigade. (Reported in the Telegraph here)
Now has used a speech in Brussels to criticise the EU of a "Power Grab" against this country and warned the EU that the UK “will not shy away” from taking legal action to protect its interests.
(The Telegraph here  and The Mail here).

Now I am a person who always likes a good conspiracy theory, so I'm wondering what has brought about this change in our normally quiet, very politically correct and pro-EU MP.  He has one of the safest seats in the country, so has little to worry about in that direction. He abstained in the votes on both the same-sex marriage bill which he described as "ill conceived" and also on HS2, and thus is broadly in tune with his electorate.
So why the change? He's a QC and the sort of person who thinks carefully about what he is saying and I'm sure that his recent speeches haven't been made without very careful prior thought.
Could it be that he's looking at the possibility that the Tories might loose the next election?   
If so, the Tories would soon be seeking a new leader, and bearing in mind that a number possible contenders could loose their seats, Dominic Grieve could well be in the running. At least someone who "puts his brain into gear before opening his mouth" would be a huge change from the present leadership!


  1. Perhaps you should have waited for the text of Grieve's complete and delivered speech. And then waited further to see whether and how he backtracked from that text as he backtracked from his remarks about the culture of Pakistani corruption.
    But then I was a lawyer for more than 40 years...

  2. As my earlier comment foreshadowed, the predelivery newspaper reports of Grieve’s speech “to be delivered” were a misleading beat-up; the tenor of the actual speech was quite different and it was suffused with the lawyerly verbosity habitually employed by learned brethren feed by the syllable.
    But as a retired solicitor I did appreciate this: “There will of course be cases where there are genuine disputes about the scope of the EU’s powers. That is why so many of us here are able to make a living as lawyers.”
    The actual speech is entitled “The future of Europe: opportunities and challenges” – googling that will give you the full text where you will read at the start: “it was nearly 41 years ago that I was interviewed as a 16 year old in Trafalgar Square on New Year’s Day 1973 just after the stroke of midnight to be asked in French by French television, as to my opinion of the UK joining the EEC. I responded with enthusiasm - and in French. This was … the view I had that this great experiment in human co-operation was worthy of support.
    Two years later I spent 3 months of my gap year working for the ‘Keep Britain in Europe’ campaign during the referendum and was delighted with the outcome. It is with this background … that I speak this evening”
    Not what one would have inferred from the pre-delivery press reports, eh?