Hacking scandal is about power, say Christian socialists

By staff writers
July 20, 2011

The Christian Socialist Movement (CSM) has said that recent controversies over the banking crisis, phone hacking and MPs' expenses all show a failure to exercise power responsibly.

“Power should be more fairly dispersed in society, and better held to account,” said CSM’s Stephen Beer, “Everyone should keep the common good in mind”.

Beer said that this view had long been held by “Christians on the Left of politics”.

CSM, which is affiliated to the Labour Party, backed statements by Labour leader Ed Miliband, who made similar comments on Monday (18 July). He said the three scandals were linked by the “irresponsibility of the powerful”.

But Miliband drew criticism from those who accuse the Labour leadership of bowing to the power of the banks and the Murdoch press during Labour’s time in office.

Miliband said, "This issue of responsibility is one which must be tackled throughout British society”.

Beer added, "Ed Miliband highlighted the collapse of confidence in banks, parliament over MP expenses, and the media. In all three, values were unchallenged and, for a few, became distorted.”

CSM has focused on banking issues in recent months, and made a submission to the Independent Commission on Banking (ICB) earlier this month, which was published last week.

In its submission, CSM stated that "the banking sector (or any sector of the economy) should not be permitted to exercise undue power”.

CSM repeated its call for banking operations to be separated between retail banking and riskier investment banking. The movement insists that the banking sector proved in the crisis that it cannot control itself and regulation alone is not enough.


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