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 land’s most powerful people and the aura around the higher reaches of society is fading fast.
Clearly some of those with a lofty status and an even loftier wage packet have always believed they are untouchable and are free to pick and choose which laws they obey, the only difference is now that it seems the rest of us will no longer stand for them getting away with it.
What has followed since Savile was exposed from the grave is an unstoppable crusade to out wrong ‘uns at the very highest level
A distrust of many of those in power has long been the default position of a hardcore who usually relish their place on the fringes of society but it does appear that they may have been right.
Generally speaking the British way has traditionally been to moan about our political leaders and lampoon those at the top of the tree who really deserve it, but until recently that is as far as the dissent has gone.
But it seems that the worm has turned and there is now a new found 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 otherwise anonymous MP claiming for the cost of a duck house sticks firmly in the craw. The backlash that followed caused a sea change within society which meant that cap doffing in the direction of an 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.
Regardless of how depraved Savile was or how truly horrifying the extent of his crimes were, 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 from the grave is an unstoppable crusade to out wrong ‘uns at the very highest level. In the space of a few years we have seen the likes of Rolf Harris, Max Clifford, TV weatherman Fred Talbot and broadcaster Stuart Hall jailed for a variety of sex crimes.
It may be that Cyril Smith, the late politician suspected of being 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 in committing his evil crimes will be brought to book. There now appears to be an endless stream of inquiries and investigations into appalling crimes which really should have been dealt with some 30 years ago.
This new approach to wrongdoing also did for the four judges who lost their jobs after being caught watching legal porn at work on their computers. Although the hapless quartet cannot be compared to sex offenders in any way it is fair to say that 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.