That’s the catchily alliterative name that has been given to the huge collection of documents (not as a rule in fact in paper form) leaked from a law company in Panama; a company whose registered office is in fact in one of those ex British colonies that have long experience of devious financial dealings.
The papers reveal corruption, money-laundering, the usual trappings of grotesque greed, in ‘high places’. There have been cries of outrage, demonstrations in the streets, calls for enquiries, and resignations of ‘important’ people in all the countries affected.
All but one. In the U.K., which the documents show to be one of the most unscrupulous of all states, there have been nothing but shrugs of indifference. Why? Well, as with so many of the nastier aspects of Britain, it is the legacy of Thatcher and her toadies. Thatcher — and let us not forget that Britain is a fairly democratic country, so Thatcher was in power because the British people wanted her in power — had no real sense of right and wrong. If something was profitable, it was right; the notion that something could be profitable but wrong would have seemed to her a simple logical contradiction; the words ‘Right’ and ‘Profitable’ were virtually synonyms. The only values were monetary ones.
Lots of people have been saying ‘I’ve done nothing wrong’. No, of course they haven’t. “What do you mean, ‘Wrong’? I made a big profit!”