Power doesn’t give you the right to break law

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Judges sacked for watching porn on work computers followed by the clearest indication yet that historic child abuse may have been committed by some of the most powerful people and the aura around the higher reaches of society is fading fast.

Clearly some of those with a lofty status and a loftier wage packet have always believed they are untouchable and are free to choose which laws they obey, the only difference is now it seems the rest of us will no longer stand for them getting away with it.

A distrust of many of those in power has long been the position of a hardcore who usually relish their place on the fringes of society but it appears they may have been right.

The British way has traditionally been to moan about our political leaders and lampoon those at the top who deserve it, but until recently that is as far as the dissent has gone.

But it seems the worm has turned and there is now a desire to uncover and punish any wrongdoing by those who should know better. Maybe it was the expenses scandal of six years ago which started the ball rolling as, even now, the memory of an MP claiming for the cost of a duck house sticks firmly in the craw. The backlash that followed meant cap-doffing in the direction of a MP was eradicated almost overnight.

But what has really inspired 21st Century Britain to challenge those in the public eye is the Jimmy Savile scandal, as there seems to be a determination that we will never be fooled like that again. What really compounded the scandal was that the opportunities to stop him were missed because so many people thought he was too important to challenge.

What has followed since he was exposed is a crusade to out wrong ‘uns at the highest level. It may be that Cyril Smith, the politician since confirmed as a prolific paedophile, could turn out to be the worst of a very bad, famous lot. It is too late to punish him but hopefully those who helped him evade justice and even joined him will be brought to book.

There now appears to be an endless stream of investigations into appalling crimes which should have been dealt with some 30 years ago.

This new approach also did for the four judges who lost their jobs after being caught watching legal porn at work on their computers. Although they cannot be compared to sex offenders, it is fair to say nobody would have dared to challenge them as recently as two years ago. The world is now a different place where being famous and powerful doesn’t give you the right to break the law.