I’ve avoided blogging too much over the past few weeks…mainly because of how depressing this whole saga has been thus far. Let’s face it, there ain’t much difference between the three of them but a ConDem[n] partnership was not what I expected (despite how far to the right the Libs have moved in recent years). Given the way Clegg is running things, I’ll be surprised if there is still a Lib Dem party come 2015….And so the cuts will come….the cuts that the Lib Dems originally wanted to postpone….ah the sniff of power eh chaps?
Of course, these cuts are obviously necessary. And of course the government aren’t exaggerating the situation so that they can hand the keys over the private sector…..of course they say they are giving power to the people, but it’s not really the same when you give the power to a few rich people. What say will we really have in anything? Let’s face it, little at best. And the names that are being bandied about to help the government push through these cuts are interesting to say the least. Let’s take Lord Browne for example…..
According to The Times:
Ministers are attempting to woo business figures such as Lord Browne of Madingley, the former head of BP, to help civil servants to manage the difficult task ahead.
So what of this Lord Browne, what’s his story? A fairly interesting one and, quite timely considering recent events in the States.
The BBC reported back in 2007 that Browne was stepping down as chief executive at BP due to personal issues. As the BBC reports:
The chief executive of oil giant BP, Lord Browne of Madingley, has resigned from his post with immediate effect.
Lord Browne said he had stepped down to save BP from embarrassment after a newspaper won a court battle to print details of his private life.
He also apologised that statements he had made in legal documents about a four-year relationship with Jeff Chevalier had been “untruthful”.
So far, so sleazy. But this isn’t why he is of interest (unless you read a red top of course). The real interest is buried later on in the report:
Lord Browne had been at the helm of the company for more than a decade, however in recent months he had come under fire over the company’s safety culture and his huge retirement package.
Yep, he made what I guess you could call “efficiency savings” in relation to their safety procedures. This, in turn, led to the incident at the Texas City refinery that resulted in 15 deaths and injured 170 others. If this is the result of his savings in the private sector, who knows what the end result will be for us this time. This man’s “efficiency savings” resulted in the deaths of at least fifteen of his employees. Not exactly a track record to be proud of….and certainly one to fear. Still, at least BP’s safety record improved greatly after 2005 and there were no further major disasters that stemmed from cutting corners on safety procedures. Oh, hang on a minute.