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Sunday, 24 March 2013

'THE JERSEY WAY' - THE MANTRA OF THOSE INCAPABLE OF ADMITTING WHEN THEY ARE WRONG..


'The Jersey Way'. What is it? I mean... according to the local Establishment it doesn't even exist. Just, co-incidentally, as the Jersey 'Establishment' itself also does not exist...

The reasons for this denial are many fold. Yet perhaps the most telling is the simple fact that if one doggedly denies somethings very existence then it becomes all the more difficult to make any criticism stick. After all how do you begin to engage with or challenge someone when they refuse point-blank to even acknowledge there is an issue to explore?

But for this article rather than focus on the actual people and workings of the local Establishment generally let's just spend a little time considering one intrinsic block within the rotten edifice of how this 'Jersey Way' tends to manifest: the 'Jersey Way' mindset. 

For at the bottom line this is at the heart of everything that is a barrier to finally developing a full and transparent democracy in our island: a democracy where 'equality' and 'justice' does not depend on the depth of your pocket or usefulness to those desperate to hang on to their 'right' of holding power. 

The Dean...

As a beginning let's just consider the current saga of the Dean of Jersey. The fact is that this sorry episode need not ever have happened at all. Indeed, even with what HAS happened we could already be a whole lot further along the road to setting things right.

Most important of all, of course, this would mean locating the poor, badly let down young woman - the victim - at the heart of all of this. Locating her to apologise for what has happened to her; ensuring that she is safe, OK and has the painful barb of being criminalised and driven out of our island so unjustly removed.

Lastly, by then demonstrating to her that all of those involved in her betrayal really are going to learn from what went wrong; learn and where appropriate be held accountable.

We are your betters and our reputation must not be tarnished...

Yet this is where 'the Jersey Way' comes in. Those who adhere to its mantra just cannot ever accept that they are ever wholly in the wrong; even less so that any amongst the proles should be able to hold them to account. To suggest that this pathetic and highly damaging outlook is tied up entirely with the issue of so-called 'class' would risk over simplifying it. It is likewise not even simply about wealth.

That these are regularly both huge contributory factors are, of course, beyond argument. Yet in my opinion analysis suggests that most significant of all in developing this sociological 'illness' in the modern world is the holding of power simply by means of position; and the compounding factor of there being no adequate or easily accessible means  for lesser mortals to hold such people to account.

The Dean - who I have absolutely nothing whatsoever against - is clearly in the wrong. He has, to use the words of one of my constituents, 'screwed up'. let's face it: we all do at times in our life. You might then think that as a 'man of God' he would be all for sticking his hand up, saying sorry and taking the flak.

Maybe to be fair after the past week or two he now genuinely wants to do this? Yet still in kicks 'the Jersey Way' and so all of those other carriers of the  virus in the island have to puff our their chests; dust off their best tweeds, shiny shoes and (probably seldom read) bibles and shout indignantly from the rooftops that the Dean is actually the victim here.

It stinks. It is repulsive. It shouldn't happen. Yet until Jersey finally joins the 21st Century and recognises that accountability must apply to all; and is actually the best way of building and protecting international reputation there is it will continue to happen. And if we have to have this forced upon us from outside because there aren't enough people in Jersey with the Testicular Fortitude to bring this about themselves then so be it.

Examples of 'the Jersey Way' are everywhere...

The Dean is just the latest example. But just look around you and if only you are prepared to look past the spin there are other instances everywhere. Just consider the long and cruel battle to finally batter down resistance to securing a fully independent Committee of Inquiry into the abuse at Haut de la Garenne and other institutions. The Jersey Way - arrogant and complicit people fighting indignantly and viciously not to run the risk of accountability. As to the true victims - some with decades of suffering on their shoulders already - sod them! 'The Jersey Way' doesn't want to know and doesn't care.

Secret courts...

Look at the secret courts being conducted under our very noses - conducted under the threatening spectre of 'super-injunctions' with fines or even imprisonment dare anyone speak out about it - to silence a former 'anti-establishment' politician, Stuart Syvret,  on the Internet. Silenced when push comes to shove primarily because what he was saying was damaging to the Establishment's perception of Jersey's 'image'. 

Yet hang on a minute...isn't it a fact that one of the people being afforded taxpayers money - your and my money and thousands of pounds of it - to silence the former Senator for his Internet writings is actually the island's biggest and most cowardly cyber-thug? A convicted criminal. Someone quite happy to threaten that innocent people will be murdered!

Ah, what champions of righteousness our Establishment are! No double-standards here then, eh Attorney General? Its the crime isn't it - not who did it...

Never mind the pain my failures have caused - I'M important...

Want something a bit less current? Just cast your mind back to a wholly merited vote of no confidence brought by Deputy Shona Pitman against our former Attorney General and Bailiff - now 'poll-topping' Senator Sir Philip Bailhache. Political speeches wholly outside his mandate; the illegal banning from the States of a politician; a truly sickening abuse of his Liberation day speech to belittle the abuse of children in States institutions against some less than fully considered global journalism.

Worst of all, perhaps, his appalling failure when Attorney General in allowing the convicted paedophile, Roger Holland, to be sworn back in to the ranks of the Honorary Police. The direct consequence being more innocent young girls needlessly abused.

Make to mistake about it. Let not history be re-written: for this last failing Sir Philip Bailhache should have been sacked. He should have preempted that in fact and resigned. Yet whilst an Attorney General just a few miles across the water in the Isle of Man has recently been suspended here 'the Jersey Way' ensured that ours was not.

As for the vote of no confidence vote...just 3 brave votes amidst much cowardly and irrelevant waffling about the 'great tradition' of the role of Bailiff. 'The Jersey Way' in action once again.

Shouldn't a Bailiff be capable of acknowledging when he is wrong...

You see the examples of 'the Jersey Way' truly are endless. Yet to conclude this particular article let's jump right back up to the present again. Anyone doubting that 'the Jersey Way' is very much alive and kicking in 2013 really need look no further than the defamation case brought against the Jersey Evening Post and the estate agents Broadlands by Deputy Shona Pitman and I last year.

Judges and Jurats are REQUIRED to recuse themselves if they have any relationships - conflicts of interest - with either a plaintiff or defendant. This isn't a matter of choice or individual discretion to be adhered to or disregarded as individuals see fit. This MUST happen. Human Rights Article 6 enshrines this. The responsibility for ensuring this happens, however, is down to two people. The Jurat and the Bailiff via his Office.

The fact is there can be no excuse whatsoever for Jurat John Le Breton who happily sat on our case. He knew full well that he is an evidenced friend of a director of one of the defendants. He knew that he and this defendant company director even went to dinner at each others homes.

Indeed, as I have pointed out before: even without the deeply concerned people who came forward to advise us of this after the case; even without the dozen prominent Islanders, politicians past and present who wrote to complain of this to the UK Justice Minister Le Breton has been caught in his failings bang-to-rights. There should be some kind of serious sanction available. We should be able to prosecute him.

Yet putting this sickening and in my eyes wholly contemptible individual aside all of this wouldn't matter quite so much if our Bailiff, Sir Michael Birt would only be big enough to put his hands up and acknowledge that he and the Office he oversees got it horribly wrong in not ensuring all was as it should be - for any litigant.

The decision in our case simply cannot stand: it cannot be viewed as safe or just by any stretch of the imagination. Indeed, you really would have to question why any defendant such as a newspaper would still be quite happy to try and benefit from such a evidenced blatant abuse of justice...

Let us just remind ourselves of the cast iron reality of this with the words of the late and legendary Lord Denning:

Conflict of Interest

"The court does not look at the mind of justice itself or at the mind of the chairman of the tribunal, or whoever it may be who sits in a judicial capacity. It does not look to see if there was a real likelihood that he would, or did, in fact favour one side at the expense of the other.

The Court looks at the impression that would be given to other people. Even if he was impartial as could be, nevertheless, if the right minded-persons would think that, in the circumstances there was a real likelihood of bias on his part, then he should not sit. And if he does so, then, his decision cannot stand..."

The fact is our Bailiff failed in his duty. He failed us. he failed justice. If he would only do the right thing and simply apologise for this and set in motion the action to correct this injustice it might yet be possible to see this as a ghastly, if certainly very painful, stressful mistake. But he has not. And so once again we see the 'the Jersey Way' in all of its sickening contempt for right, justice and democracy. 

The message once again...we are the Establishment. We are too big; too important - actually too damned cowardly if truth be told of course - to hold up our hands; admit we made a mistake and accept accountability. Even worse I suppose the further possibility must arise that perhaps he may have been quite happy to collude with Le Breton's breaching of Human Rights Article 6? You really would have to hope not. But what else can one conclude?

No matter how long it takes Justice must win out over 'the Jersey Way'...

And so sickening as that thought certainly is this is also the  essence of why those of us who do believe in justice over 'the Jersey Way' will keep on fighting. In a democracy justice simply must be for all. Those currently haranguing the Church of England for at last putting its house in order in a place that on this occassion just happens to be Jersey; and doing so at the risk of seeing the real female victim of of the Dean saga abandoned and forgotten all over again really ought to wake up and smell the coffee... 

Keep the Faith - Justice will win in the end.


46 comments:

  1. The Jersey way should have ended with the Occupation. No place for such attitudes in a modern society. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

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  2. William Cobbett called the Establishment "The Thing".

    Here he is on that subject:

    "After seeing that about three or four hundred Boroughmongers actually possess all the legislative power, divide the ecclesiastical, judicial, military, and naval departments amongst their own dependents, what a fine picture we find of that wise system of checks and balances, of which so much has been said by many great writers! What name to give such a government it is difficult to say. It is like nothing that ever was heard of before. It is neither a monarchy, an aristocracy, nor a democracy; it is a band of great nobles, who, by sham elections, and by the means of all sorts of bribery and corruption, have obtained an absolute sway in the country . . . Such is the government of England; such is the thing which has been able to bribe one half of Europe to oppress the other half. (Register 33 [1818], 377-78)"

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  3. The 'Jersey Way' to me seems to be when those in power can't actually believe that they have been rumbled and decide to just sit there ignore things and hope they go away. When they don't go away they start digging. No when we were all mushrooms this 'way' may have worked for some considerable years but a few people developing some cojones and investigated further we have a whole new kettle of fish. Long may the progressives reign.

    ahimsa

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    1. I will raise a glass to that Ahimsa!

      For far to long the Jersey Way has thrived hidden under a cloak of false respectability.

      More and more people are becoming aware now as to what exactly passes for 'democracy' and 'justice' in this cesspit of an Island, and no small thanks to brave and honest bloggers and those who are prepared to speak out.

      Long may this continue.

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  4. The Attorney General in the Isle Of Man has been charged with a number of offences to include perjury and fraud which raises another constitutional question for this septic Isle of Jersey where the AG is the sole prosecutor. Who can prosecute him?

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    1. This is a very good question and one that needs some digging.

      A few months ago Deputy Mike Higgins asked a written question seeking to learn who each and all of our Law Officers and jurats too were answerable too. The answer - from the Attorney General - was less than helpful.

      With Jurats, of course, they basically answer to the Bailiff and their fellow friend Jurats who make up the Superior Number - so obviously nothing will be done about individuals blatantly abusing their roles here.

      The Attorney General though is one that I will pursue. Likewise our Bailiff who appears answerable only to himself!

      Delete
  5. Keep the faith indeed - the pressure must be constant and never ending the truth must be afforded it's place at the very top and must remain there. Lot's of work to do to get it there but I can see it finally inching it's way up and illuminating all on it's way - shine the light in every dark corner and let truth prevail.

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  6. Jacques Michel Chartier25 March 2013 at 11:30:00 GMT

    I cannot understand how Mr Le Breton even became a jurat. It was almost a reward from the establishment for trying to pervert the course of justice. He was in a position of trust and turned a blind eye. After reading the Sharp report, I discovered that Mr Le Breton would be sitting as a jurat in a civil case that I was involved in. In my opinion it was reasonable of me to instruct my advocate to notify the Royal Court that due to Mr Le Bretons past, I did not feel that he was fit to be a jurat. I was told that you can't say that. This is an example of the "Jersey Way".

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    1. If you trawl the cases, I have no doubt you will find, as I have, that Jurat Le Breton presided over more than his fair share of politically sensitive cases. I wonder whether Deputy Pitman has asked how a Jurat is selected to preside over a case and what response he received. I would expect an evenly spread distribution of work among all of the Jurats. If I was in Deputy Pitman's position, I would ask for a list of every date on which each Jurat presided over a case in the last 10 years just to see if there were any emergent patterns in the allocation.

      Delete
  7. OFF TOPIC - You may be interested in the front page of today's Guernsey Press, the story features data protection commissioner Emma Martins, up to some strange activity maybe!!

    "Guernsey's assistant data protection commissioner
    has resigned after an investigation she had been carrying out for a year was pulled without her knowledge or consent, it has emerged.

    Anne Wiggins quit her role just before Christmas after the pan-island data protection commissioner told her the complaint she had been investigating - believed to be against a public body - was to be shut down.

    It is understood that Mrs Wiggins signed a gagging order when leaving her role, meaning she was unable to comment.

    But a number of sources confirmed the acrimonious nature of her departure and the questions it raised about how such complaints were handled.

    It is understood data protection commissioner Emma Martins closed the case, against the advice of Mrs Wiggins following a meeting in February 2012 with HM Procureur Howard Roberts.

    Mr Roberts refused to comment on the details of that meeting or on whether he had advised the data commissioner to shut it down.

    'You know very, well that the Law Officers can't comment on matters affecting individuals', he said.

    But Mrs Martind 'categorically' denied that she had been pressured into making the decision.

    She also said it would be inappropriate for her to revealany details of the investigation.

    "That is absolutely factually inaccurate', she said in response to a question asking if she had received a request to close the case.

    'I can categorically say that I would not be influenced by anyone, regardless of their position, and I would rather resign than allow that to happen'.

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  8. Deputy. This post and ones from Rico Sorda and Team Voice really highlight very well what we are up against here. You are so very right to highlight both the attitude of our Establishment figures and the sickening unfolding of this secret court against Syvret. How can a person like our infamous troll be handed our money? It is an absolute disgrace and needs to be made public in the States.

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    1. The involvement of Emma Martins should be added to your list of reasons why the crown is failing to make sure Jersey upholds the rule of law. Sinister.

      Delete
  9. Anonymous @1407:

    This is not at all off-topic, because one of the keys to the Jersey Way is the lack of public record.

    In the case of the Dean, the Diocese come along with a report where they are able to lay hands on every relevant letter, e-mail, note they created. They asked the Dean for his side: the Dean said he had no records of what went on.

    In the case of Graham Power ILM concealed relevant documentation which would have established from day one that the suspension was out of order. He released the case for the prosecution, but neither he nor other local media would release Power's statement.

    But we will fight them in the archives, we will fight them in the libraries...

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    1. It is only crumbs of cover up that shall be available in archives. The Nazi collaboration files are still secret.

      My understanding is that the Police Chief Graham Power had terms of employment that included legal representation.

      Graham Power's copy of his terms of employment were amongst the items that were 'stolen' from his safe at work the day (or so) after he was illegally excluded in the Walker/Ogley/Lewis coup.

      This might not have been a problem for Police Chief Power because States Personnel held the other copy.
      This copy was unavailable for suspended Police Chief Power's defence because States Personnel had "LOST" it.
      All defence is legally or illegally stripped but Graham Power still fought his corner (and was allocated Jurat Le Breton !!!!)

      I recall that a considerable amount of evidence and statements from HDLG was also 'lost' after the suspension of the Police Chief and a number of major cases against powerful individuals were shut down.

      The Jersey Way - totally shameless, seemingly compromising every aspect of public administration and government. All under the smoke screen provided by the JEP for the gullible majority.

      Laid bare by a few brave individuals. The Jersey Way is going down, but not without a fight.

      Delete
  10. "The Dean of Jersey is suffering from stress after being suspended following the way he handled an abuse claim."

    If only he had given greater consideration to the woman who was obviously under far more stress than he could be, he would not have put himself in this position, no sympathy I'm afraid as I guess the judge who bound HG over gave no consideration for the way she had been treated.

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  11. Accountability? Justice? Rule Of Law? Just words of an ORPHANED MOMENT.

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  12. The Jersey way is the biggest threat to democracy this island has faced since the time of the Nazi invasion. This closing of ranks and battoning down the hatches just should not be acceptable. Justice must be of more import than our image as a financial centre.

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  13. I must say, considering I'm not a big fan of you as a politician Deputy Pitman, I believe you are on a very wise path.

    Recently appearing in front of 2 jurats and the deputy baliff really made it hit home what an ol'boys club our judiciary system really is.

    Although I don't believe I'll be subject to a miscarriage of justice when the big day comes, I do feel that the outcome would be different if we weren't stuck in this establishment rut.

    Although it doesn't have a direct effect, I think it's important that option A in the ref. gets through. Would make a start for a fairer tomorrow.

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    1. While the options A to C look different, in an important respect this is superficial.

      The hijacked referendum lets us choose between three options that ALL SUIT Bailhache and the establishment
      (no change as per option C or a significant increase in COM power due to them outnumbering the opposition due to the reduction in members as per both option A and option B)

      I suggest Vote
      A #1
      &
      C#2

      I predict that most people won't vote with option C winning the referendum (being the 2nd choice in common) This will send the message to the states - DO IT PROPERLY NEXT TIME !!

      Total waste of time and money, but that is what happens if you let the prejudiced and conflicted hijack the process.

      Ideally "A" will win but then the turkeys (by not voting for Christmas) will adapt "A" to maintain sufficient representatives for a workable parliament -otherwise it is back to the drawing board.

      Delete
  14. Just to give you all a little more insight into this deception, who among you trusts a lawyer? even a trainee crook lawyer?

    That's right, none of you, you all know that lawyers are lying cheating scum bags, they sh*t on everyone because they are married to the Law Society...."Stupid is, as stupid does"....

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  15. Interesting blog post from an Islander you may not normally read regarding privacy concerns with the police's new "Anonymous Report Form"
    http://tomandshirley.com/28-states-of-jersey-police-website-privacy-concerns

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  16. Heard you on the radio Trevor. You make good points. Did I read somewhere that you gave a long interview to the BBC? Because if that is correct then the piece must have been cut down a lot. Our Law Society basically saying all is hunky dory is beyond belief. But also no surpise sadly.

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  17. Jurats have a lot of power and many of the finance companies seek them out to be on the board of directors and suchlike. In fact, many a managing director or chairman of a finance house may shake in their shows if they fall out of favour.

    A touch of you scrath my back etc, etc. Jurats should definitely be independently voted in if we need them at all.

    ahimsa

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  18. Cops, Lawyers & Judges 'are' the problem with JERSEY JUSTICE.

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  19. Dear Deputy Pitman,

    If ever this Island needed proof of how just biased and conflicted the JEP is it comes forth in tonight's RAG, two pages dedicated to P.B in his 'assault' regarding the dean of Jersey, you will note this crap is printed 'word for word' unlike your recent 'Press Release' which was re-written leaving out (of course) all the truthful bits. When will the mushrooms of this Island pull thier collective heads out of the B/S and see the light? answer...never I fear. Oh by the way PB might have spent perhaps just a 'little' time for the poor young woman in question, and of course no mention of the B....y culprit in all this!!...ah The Jersey Way.

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  20. Anon 16:37, took the words out of my mouth. But Trevor were you happy with what was broadcast?

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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
    2. As I told readers on Twitter hacked by a troll. sad but life I suppose. Shouldn't have to remove or even put up with fake comments etc But that is how some get their kickes. That, drinking Stella and inventing hate sites.

      Repeat any strange or suspicious messages apparently from me or appearring here treat with a pinch of salt and message me. This site should be ok again now and Twitter safeguards too.

      Delete
  21. Check out the comments section on my OPERATION BOHAN posting, the comment about Bowron was from Neil Puddick himself.

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  22. There is a link on the BBC Jersey site to the UK Dept of Justice Select Committee led by Chairman Sir Alan Beith MP which is renewing its previous look at the CIs and the IOM.
    The previous examination was half-baked because it made no attempt to engage first-hand with the residents of these Islands and I saw Beith striding across the Royal Square led by Jersey's AG just a few weeks before the Report was cobbled together....
    If the same people are not to grab hold of this follow-up
    examination the people must be prepared to get off their bottoms and make representations. Written submissions must be sent to arrive before midday 10 May and perhaps somebody can put a LINK up here to the correct address etc. There is a format to be followed.
    Also I would urge anybody interested to invite the Committee to meet with residents of the Island(s) either publicly or in private IN THE ISLAND so that a full and proper discussion of issues might take place.
    Also that the Greffier be prevailed upon to advertise that this Committee is looking at the Islands (he refused my request last time claiming it was for the Committee to do its own advertising) and to encourage the public of Jersey to respond.
    I hope that you as a States Member might also be able to ask som Qs about the Committee's task and discover what official responses might be made IN OUR NAME by our Ministers etc etc

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  23. The letter from the terribly sweet I am so important Bailhache, has not appeared on the Ian Evans site or even more surprisingly on the JEP site but there is still obviously time.

    As a member of the public who not longer purchases the JEP in order to help weaken its financial wellbeing. I and many others not on Jersey, would be interested to see the letter and to see the case Phill Bailhache makes for ignoring the homeless and desperate person while supporting the Bob Key.

    Has anyone noticed how so very quiet the church going Chief Minister is ? Which frankly is a disgrace given the level of interest. Keep the faith but not in Senator PB who was elected to work for all island residents but is only interested in the elite of society, and foreign jollies at the taxpayers expense. He was against the abuse enquiry and also apparently, makes no mention of the lady casualty in this unsavoury episode but is happy to hijack the EC.

    What a man ?

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  24. Hi Trevor.

    With regard to your latest interview on BBC about the abuse of the Justice system here. Have you thought about throwing out a challenge to the Law Society or even our beloved Bailiff to go on live and debate with you?

    Me thinks they would be running scared. Please ignore the detractors the path you are following on our behalf is quite right as one of your other readers commented.Just because a few brave people highlight what is wrong does not make them anti-Jersey.

    They are simply the ones brave enough to say look, things need to be improved. Those who will attack you obviously have something to fear or hide. Keep punching you have more people behind you than you might realize.

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  25. The current posting on www.tomgruchy.blogspot.com is my 26 minutes video interview with Jersey Advocate and English Solicitor Barbara Corbett. It is, I hope, helpful and informative.

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  26. Excellent post on Rico Sorda's blog. Where on earth does he get his information from? Investigative journalism at its best...

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    1. Indeed. Our man Rico has come in to his own as the kind of investigative journalist we don't have around anymore. A hard-working detective looking for the facts and trustworthy enough to develop solid sources. Puts all the paid reporters to shame really.

      Delete
  27. Seems like there are a lot of people out there getting hacked and getting funny messages at present.

    This isn't just blogs and Twitter accounts either.

    I am one of those who has had odd seemingly friendly links sent and made the mistake of opening them.

    This then lets the hackering scum set people you know up for the same. An area that really does need som elegislation.

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  28. PS becomes more of a joke everyday. How will he explain this one away? Come on Chief Minister sack him.

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  29. Trevor.

    You are in such a good position to ask two undisputable questions at the next States sitting 1/What percentage of the Jersey people do you (PB believe are happy with your disgraceful letter to The Arch Bishop? 2/What the Hell are you (PB) doing having access and flashing around a confidential document.

    Words to that effect.

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  30. Trevor, re Rico's blog post. Time for a written question I think. We, the public, paid for that flight/trip and everything that occurred on it is in the public interest.

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  31. Question Trevor,
    What is the ruling concerning a Member of the States using States headed notepaper for personal correspondance. I ask because I seem to remember an MP getting into trouble with the then Speaker, Betty Boothroyd, for using commons headed notepaper for constituency work. Does the States crest have the same protection the HOC portcullis?

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  32. Can we have a new post please Deputy when you have time? How about your own thoughts on the Dean situation and this farcical Data Protection breach by Bailhache on a flight back to Jersey. Do you think this can really be true? It just seems incredible even for a man of his ego and stupidity?

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  33. What about this LVCR comment from MacLean?

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