The Gus O'Donnell Whitewash - *Updated*


I was going to comment on the farce that was Gus O'Donnell's inquiry into Tessa Jowell and her husband's dodgy dealings, but this headline says it all...

Blair clears Jowell of wrongdoing

From Tessa's Statement:

On the second occasion, 20th September 2000, my husband wanted to make an investment, and took out a loan using our London home as security. I signed the relevant papers. My husband has a number of investments and I knew there would be no difficulty in repaying the loan.

I knew nothing more about the nature of the investment.

I was not aware until recently that the loan had been repaid shortly after it was taken out, so our London home was no longer needed as security.

So we are expected to believe the conversation in the Jowell household went a bit like this:

September 2000:
David: Tessa darling would you sign these papers please?
Tessa: Certainly sweetie, what are they?
David: Snookums, I'm just remorgaging our house.
Tessa: Oh what for?
David: Just need a loan for an investment.
Tessa: Ok sweetie.

Cut to "just recently':
David: Oh my little love poppet, remember the morgage on the house?
Tessa: Oh yes darling?
David: I've paid it off

Craig Murray says it so much better than me, I'm too angry and pissed off with the debacle to make any sense anyway...

I thought I had heard it all

Sir Gus O'Whitewash has ruled. Teresa Jowell did not break the rules because for four years David Mills did not tell her he had received what he then believed was a gift of $600,000.

How nice it must be to be so fabulously wealthy that a gift of $600,000 is so unimportant to you that you do not even bother to mention it to your partner!

Actually, I have a lot of experience of the very rich, and they are much more obsessed with money than the poor, and certainly talk about it more. I just don't believe Jowell.

This is particularly true as the money was used to pay off a large remortgage which she herself had just taken out. She is now saying that she didn't have any idea, or apparently ask, where all the money to pay off the mortgage came from.

There is also a peculiar bit of reasoning by Sir Gus O'Whitewash. Jowell alleges that she did not know about the money for four years, and by that time tax was paid for it, so it had become earnings, not a gift.

Actually, that doesn't follow. If you receive a large cash gift it is still classed as income, and taxable.

Of course, what we still do not know, is who this money came from, and why. If it did not come from Berlusconi or from another illegitimate source, show us the paper trail. It is inconceivable that such a large sum from any legitimate source is not documented.

That money was used to pay off a mortgage which was 50% in Jowell's name. So to accept it is only her husband's business is simply nonsense.

Whitehall's whitewash has become so watery as to cover up nothing.

Commentators are starting to

Commentators are starting to point out that there's an Italian election in a few weeks' time. For Jowell to go now would mean curtains for Blair's buddy Mr B. The obvious conclusion is that no matter how much pressure we put on them, they'll cling on until after the Italian election, then maybe she'll go. More likely, though, is that the Great British Electorate will have forgotten all about it by then.

If Sir Gus becomes Lord Gus,

If Sir Gus becomes Lord Gus, we will know for sure that Tony was dangling something in front of him when he was writing the report.

So this is what transparacny is then? So clear that even the white has gone out of the white wash ?

Having witnessed Hutton,

Having witnessed Hutton, this doesn't surprise me.

I mean what is $600,000 between friends..... not to mention that the letter of 2nd Feb 2004 seems to suggest bribes of between £50k and £100k for the dividends not to be put through the books.

But then Tessa has done much to bring the world running and jumping championships to London.....

Though I would like to know what was in the 1997 SFO report into Mr Mills. Since i note that he was linked with selling tanks to Pakistan and planes to Iran, in addition to his duties for Mr Berlusconi....

So she didn't know for four

So she didn't know for four years that the debt on the house was paid off.

But, in the meantime she signed another two mortgage applications.

Did she fess up to the standard question "Is there any other debt secured on the property?"

Or did she lie?