Editorial for 10 October: The story you won’t see

The Caymanian Compass, as well as our sister publication the
Cayman Financial Review, has written some details of the ethics complaint
before the UK Commission for Standards regarding Lord David Blencathra – who
has been hired to run the Cayman Island’s London Office.

However, we must confess that we are somewhat bemused to see
the hyperventilating news coverage, both here and across the pond, about the
complaint regarding Lord Blencathra’s employment in that office.

We’re sure no one among the UK’s Labour Party and their
press allies would like to see an individual with real influence in the halls
of power who was hired to assist the Cayman Islands knocked out of that
position by a scandal, no matter how trifling.

Surely not, no.

By the same token, we’re sure no one in the Cayman Islands
government has ever even considered embarking on a course of action that might
lead to a potential conflict of interests?

Perish the thought!

However, both sides seem to be spending an awful lot of time
on the subject, it appears to us. We have to wonder if the gentlefolk doth
protest a bit too much.

Let’s be real, folks; Cayman needs experience and influence
to protect and advance the interests of its financial services industry both at
home and abroad.

People here might complain about the expense of having
lobbyists and their ilk, but given Cayman’s standing in the global financial
services industry and the challenges it has faced from foreign politicians
trying to deflect blame for their countries’ own failed policies, it is
nevertheless essential.

Although it would be great to have Caymanians in all of
those positions, lobbying efforts in foreign countries, almost by their very
nature, need to be done by insiders of those countries with powerful contacts.
Not surprisingly, those people also tend to be citizens of those countries.

To the extent Lord Blencathra can provide that, the Cayman
Islands should support him, even if politicians that wish for the end of the
Cayman Islands’ financial success, and people who feel their family members
should have gotten a job somewhere, do not.



  1. Caycompass…

    The answers to both your questions concerning both sides of this issue, unfortunately the answer is a resounding YES, they most certainly would…

    If and when it is their own selfish interests to do so.

    And in this case, for both the Labour Party and the local antagonists, it most certainly is.

    Surely your editors have been in the news game long enough to know how things work in the world of high finance and politics…and in the case of the Cayman Islands, it does not get any higher than this.

    The Labour Party cares about one thing, and one thing only…regaining the reigns of power in Britain in the next general election…any means to that end is justifiable their eyes and if challenging Lord Blencathra’s Cayman lobbyist position before the ethics committee serves that purpose, that is exactly what they have done.

    As press people, I’m sure that you are also aware that the major newspapers in Britain are politically aligned to one major party or another and that their editorial positions in many cases reflect these allegencies.

    Question why the Independent daily raised the issue in the first place…and there you might find the real answer to your questions.

    The Cayman Islands is now becoming a real issue in Britain, more as a political football than anything else…

    But, the days of blissfully sailing under the political radar in Britain is over for Cayman…

    And the British press and political system can be compared to sharks..to Cayman’s.

    As for any bleating from McKeeva Bush’s crew about THEM not getting a cushy London job…

    That can easily be dismissed as disappointed nepotism…

    Any of them complaining couldn’t handle the job in the first place…as has been proven in the past.

  2. The London office serves more than one function. Those in government and many of those in the local press continually fail to grasp that lobbyists have a limited role to play as mouthpieces. Their role it is to deliver a scripted message. Cayman is under attack based on false arguments about our supposed role in the financial crisis, arguments that are repeated over and over by journalists who have not been given the other side of the story. By and large no lobbyists hired by Cayman is competent to develop the the substantive arguments of the beneficial role that places like Cayman play in the world of global finance. Substantive arguments are the best hope for swaying the senior civil servants and influential journalists in the UK and the US that advise and influence the politicians there. The technical arguments exist but our current grade of politicians probably are not capable of understanding or communicating them.

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