If you want to move to the UK, follow the guide of the broadcaster who interviewed Rubiales

How did British broadcaster Piers Morgan reach this point? It is one of the continuing mysteries of public life. I see him as a clown, a bully, and a charlatan. But Morgan, who interviewed former Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales last week, has risen like a methane bubble in a chemical suspension, occupying some prestigious and lucrative positions in the media despite scandals that would have ended anyone’s life. Professional life.

magazine Private eye He gave an explanation Last week in an article About the life and abuses of the wealthy Mohammed Al-Fayed. She cited a text Morgan wrote in 1999 about Al-Fayed: “I have always maintained a strict rule in life of ingratiating myself with three classes of people: newspaper owners, would-be newspaper owners, and billionaires. Considering that Mohamed Al-Fayed is a billionaire and would love to own a newspaper, kowtowing to him seems a very reasonable move.

The strategy is not uncommon. What’s strange is that I say that. Morgan loudly uttered an unspoken rule in public life: If you want to rise, bow down to billionaires, especially when they own the media. The obvious conclusion: “Because they are the ones with the real power.”

The rule that cannot be broken

Many rules are broken without consequences. As long as you work to direct the requests of the rich, May breach BBC editorial guidelines Appear in it without revealing your financial interests. As long as you remain a loyal servant of the great fortunes, you can violate parliamentary rules with impunity, lie, leave information about your interests without updating, or Accepting a second job without permission At the end of your ministerial career. What cannot be broken is the Morgan Rule. You have to stick to it if you are a political party and want to get closer to power, or if you are a talk show host and want to appear on the BBC. If you do not comply, you will be disgraced or excluded.

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Morgan and other journalists like him belong to a class of doormen who provide a wide range of services to economic power. Among them are the heads of the multi-million-dollar media outlets and think tanks on Tufton Street, which specialize in turning unacceptable demands by oligarchs and corporations into supposedly sound political logic. It also works to attack people who criticize the rich and shift responsibility for what they cause onto immigration or Labor, who are some of their classic scapegoats.

Then there are the lobbyists. Who specialize in laundering images by brokering the signing of agreements between the nefariously wealthy and cultural institutions (universities, museums, opera houses, charities) that, in exchange for large donations, place the names of their sponsors on colleges, chairs, prizes, funds and arts. galleries, turning violent kleptocrats into pillars of society.

Others are lawyers, accountants, bankers and wealth managers who specialize in hiding and laundering their money; In purchasing special visas for them; Or to prosecute and harass people who criticize them. That’s why organized crime loves London. They take advantage of England’s extremely lenient financial laws as well as its extremely repressive libel laws.

The government is always there to lend a helping hand. In 2021, when Rishi Sunak was Chancellor of the Exchequer, lawyers for the late Yevgeny Prigozhin asked his department to lift sanctions on the ruthless head of the Russian mercenary group Wagner so they could prosecute investigative journalist Elliot Higgins. Sunak’s ministry granted the special permissions they requested and even approved flights to St. Petersburg that contravened sanctions so they could plan their legal strategy.

This is how a few dozen people, with the help of thousands of cleaners, gain control of our lives. This system that we call democracy is nothing but a sticky, torn husk on the surface of the power of the few.

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Economic power translates into political power

Economic power is transformed into political power through many mechanisms, none of which work for us. The most obvious is campaign financing. Sponsorship is not limited to political parties only, but includes entire systems of political thought and action. These transactions mean that the general interests of society do not fit into the minds of politicians. Some of the donations are huge: last year, US website The Lever published details of the transfer For $1.3 billion (about 1.22 billion euros). By little-known billionaire Barry Seid for a new interest group run by a hardline conservative. How can ordinary citizens compete against that?

Financial power also ensures that there are legal loopholes wide enough to allow superyachts to sail through them within rules supposedly designed to combat economic crime and the laundering of their profits. In recent months, members of the House of Lords have attempted to remove obvious risks from the Economic Crimes Bill before Parliament. The government thwarted all these attempts. In last Monday’s debate, the Conservative MP Lord Agnew – most unlike the extremist – complained that “the government keeps saying one thing and then doing another.” Led by an oligarch and for the oligarchs, the Sunak administration first announced with great fanfare that it would close these loopholes, and then subtly amended the legislation so they remained in effect.

The power of money ensures there are no limits to your environmental impact. I was recently told about the case of a billionaire who wanted to fly to a luxury resort on his private plane. At the last minute, he changed his mind and decided to go to another place where the landing strip was shorter. Since the weight of the loaded plane exceeded the permissible limit on the new runway, the engines were made to burn fuel worth $15,000 (about 14,000 euros) before take-off. Sunak treats the UK as a fly-over country, hopping on helicopters and private planes to travel to places he can easily reach by train. Like the less-than-20-minute private flights taken by Kylie Jenner and Floyd Mayweather. Each of them denies the attempt by thousands of ordinary humans to live within the confines of a habitable planet.

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But these specific effects do not come close to the overall impact of their actions: the extraordinary way in which society at large reflects the preferences of the super-rich. Almost everyone involved in public life accepts the same set of absurd beliefs: that economic growth can be sustained indefinitely on a finite planet; The unhindered accumulation of vast wealth by a few is acceptable, even praiseworthy; that they should be allowed to possess as much natural wealth as their funds permit; that there is no objection to a few billionaires residing in tax havens owning the media and setting the political agenda; Anyone who questions these concepts has no place in civil society. We are free to speak there, but no further: the point where everything depends.

The Morgan Principle is not just an unspoken rule. It is also the indescribable truth. Everyone knows it, but almost no one pronounces it. It supports our prestigious institutions, our legal rules, our morals, and our customs. It is the great silence that we must break.

George Monbiot is a columnist for Watchman.

Translated by Francisco de Zarate.

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