Hoist with his own petard

On Delia and money laundering: a very senior police source who talked to me lamented that this was an old case and it had yet to be ascertained if the allegations were founded in reality.

It is too early to say if Adrian Delia will survive as party leader of the Nationalist party after the European parliamentary elections in May.  But considering how Delia reacts when he faces allegations or criticism it is highly unlikely that he will.  

The politicians and friends who advise him either have no clue or else they have no control over what the leader of opposition says.  When the Sunday Times carried a story last week that the police were investigating Delia on money laundering allegations the Sunday Times conveniently did not report that the police were not exactly in a very advanced stage and had no hard evidence in hand.  

On the contrary very senior police sources who talked to me lamented that this was an old case and it had yet to be ascertained if the allegations were founded in reality.  

Delia stupidly dedicated the Sunday sermon at a party club reacting to the Sunday newspaper report giving the report even more credence.
Rule number 1 in the guide book for dumb politicians reads like this:  If you want to bury a story do not add fuel to the fire yourself.  

There is little doubt in my mind, that Delia’s understanding of the media is very limited and I have the impression that the people around him either have no clue, or want to sink Delia further down in the popularity ranking.

As in all things in politics, if someone wants to hit out at you they will dig up your past and your past misdemeanours and bad behaviour and past dealings and hang them out in public for the jackals.

Delia has far too many enemies.  It starts with his wife, his own backbenchers, the groups that have sprouted after Daphne’s murder and the traditional media that traditionally would herald the Nationalist Party as the next best thing to a knickerbocker glory.

With all these variables stacked against you the last thing you need to add to guarantee that your political career is somehow jettisoned is a lack of political vision, present yourself as the saviour of cleaner politics when you are not and lastly to forge ahead with a disjointed party.
Let us touch on these three points.

The first point is vision.

Well Adrian Delia’s vision is marked by his grand idea on smart migration, a recycled proposal based on the Australian model.  Again, Delia is hoping that the inroads rightist Salvini made in Italy will somehow be replicated by the Nationalist party.  Unaware that Italy’s economic ills have little bearing in Malta’s booming economy.

He then talks of other issues, life and the precious thing called life only to angers the IVF lobby with his sermons from the mount which clearly is  falling on deaf ears.

The second pier in his three-pronged attack is his take on clean politics.  Which is beyond the analogy of the pot calling the kettle black.  Embedded in everyone’s psyche is Daphne Caruana Galizia’s attack on Adrian Delia and her insinuations that he was a money launderer just days before her murder.  And not to forget are his unforgettable but I guess regrettable outbursts against Daphne which simply did not sound right.

It also did not help that he promoted a motion in the Maltese parliament to call for an inquiry to see if Daphne Caruana Galizia’s death could have been avoided.  More so when he was responsible for the raising the temperature against the blogger and blowing air into his motley crowd of very colourful supporters against the most potent blogger in the PN armoury.

The third consideration is Adrian Delia’s failure to get the party together and get the lost sheep behind him.  Today he faces more opposition from within than from the Labour party with NGO’s and four people groups hitting out at him whenever possible.

The most worrisome angle to this story is that no one it seems is willing to come forward and save the day.  

When I suggested that Claudio Grech would be a good leader, Grech scurried to offer blind loyalty to the party and shoot down any notion that he had leadership interests.

Which leads me to question why do PN backbenchers continue to report for political duty?  I mean if none of them are willing to stand up to be counted and offer their services, then why should they really care to stay on.

I believe that most of them see politics as a hobby, a side-line thing to cushion their incredible ego.  Most of them are too busy getting along with their businesses and profession to give a hoot about the future of the country or their political party.

And they want to avoid being hoisted by their own petard.  

And to a certain extent they are correct.

Most of them are sensible enough to stay clear of being caught in some embarrassing revelation that could dwarf their political careers and rotate all the media attention on them.

It could vary from a PN MEP who cries wolf at the Golden passport only to offer the service himself, to another PN MP who decries the DB investment only to serve as legal adviser to the same company and to so many other examples.

The truth is if it has be told, that the humility needed for the PN to find its soul and raison d’etre has not quite taken place.  

And as we approach Christmas, I am sure Delia will be praying and welcoming a respite in the charged and unforgiving political climate.  But rest assured that once the festive season is over the knives will be out once again.  

Until then.