Legal definitions aside though, is Hain a criminal or just totally incompetent? I'd suggest the latter. While I may be giving Hain the benefit of the doubt because he's a thoroughly likeable fellow who's charmed me into seeing him in a good light, but I suspect that my trust in his incompetence over criminality has more to do with the fact that I just can't see a single benefit for him in hiding them....well, apart from one.
One of his donors was the boss of Picture The Loans, he gave five grand. You all know Picture right, that annoying Geordie Mam screaming at her kids about some scooter and that fat prat's wife screaming out "ABOUT FOOTBALL" in that annoying high pitched voice! Now tell me, if you know a candidate was being supported by the person responsible for those nightmare-causing horrors of adverts would you vote for him? Of course not! Maybe Hain was saving his campaign by hiding the donations, if the world knew that Picture was behind him he'd have been embarrassed in the poll, coming behind people nobody had ever heard of before......oh wait a sec!
A quick look at Picture's website gives you a big smiling picture of Permatan, telling us how great Picture is - I would have loved to be a fly on the wall when Picture called Hain.
"How much money do you want Peter?"
"Oh I didn't think about that, wait a sec"
(whisper to wife) "How much? £5,000?"
"Yeah, five grand will do please"
As a friend said the other day, there's a satire sketch in there somewhere, all it needs is someone to write it who, unlike me, actually can do humour! -
"Peter, Dad's found your donations!"
(a good footnote to all this, the scootah advert for picture is now banned due to it trying to portray getting a loan as an everyday event - big cheer for the ASA!)
Where does all this end? Hopefully in the resignation of Hain. While everyone commenting on his decline has to give the nod to his anti-apartheid times, that isn't the Hain of today. Today's Hain sells out to whatever cause he thinks gets him the vote. He also gives a big sop to his fellow Welsh MP's scared of losing their job to the expense of Wales. Hain isn't the voice of Wales in the cabinet, he's the voice of the cabinet in Wales.
That's why I want him sacked, doesn't quite explain why he should be sacked though. The answer to that is clear. The next time a guy gets brought to court for not declaring the fact that he had a job while claiming benefits, what's to stop him taking "the Hain Defence" and saying it was just an administrative error! Hain blames all this on concentrating too hard on his cabinet job. What a man eh! Cares so much for us, he doesn’t notice a £100k slipping down the back of the sofa!
Quick tip or you Peter, if you can't juggle more than one ball, don't join the circus.