The Daily Mail is in uplifting and optimistic mood this morning: “LET’S SAVE 7000 LIVES A YEAR … That’s what could be achieved if prostate received the same funding as breast cancer” declares the front page headline. And it would be such a bargain: “Just £290,000 a week … would bring prostate funds in line with breast cancer and dramatically improve survival rates, experts say”. But even £15 million a year is hard to find nowadays.
What's so f***ing wrong with having a f***ing £708k pension paid for by c***ing plebs, c***?!?!?
Why might that be? Well, quite apart from all those competing demands not just on NHS funding, but for all taxpayer cash, there are all those unnecessarily expensive PFI projects having to be paid off. And what the Mail is not telling its readers is that when they stump up their taxes, some of that money is siphoned off into the pension pots of the Mail’s most senior staff - including the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre himself.
How can that be? Well, Carillion - and by now we’ve all heard of them - did not just build and manage all those PFI projects, like hospitals. They sold some of the management contracts on - which brought in much-needed cash to keep the show on the road. The result of these transactions is summed up by a headline from the Independent.
This reads “Carillion made £500m in revenue from selling PFI projects and netted annual returns of up to 39%, research finds … Several firms that bought the projects from Carillion are based offshore meaning they pay no UK corporation tax on the profits they derive from public money”. And who might have benefited from the arrangement?
“Several projects were bought by Secondary Market Infrastructure Fund and Land Securities Trillium, both of which are earlier names for what is now Semperian, a company based in Jersey and part-owned by the Daily Mail Senior Executives Pension Fund”.
And one look at Semperian’s website tells you what the name of their particular game is. “Semperian owns an interest in 91 assets, with the following characteristics … Mostly Availability based income source, providing 91% of future income … High degree of asset control, with an average of 80% ownership of each asset … The average remaining life of the investments is in excess of 15 years”. The dosh just rolls in. Trebles all round!
As a case study, we see “The Great Western Hospital … a district general hospital that opened in December 2002 on a green field site, replacing the Princess Margaret Hospital in Old Town, Swindon … The PFI Concession (‘THC’) is wholly owned by Semperian, and Imagile manages the on-going obligations of the PFI project through a concession, which is scheduled to terminate in 2029. THC's partner and principal building occupier is the Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which leases the premises from THC”.
Better for overpaid newspaper executives, that's for sure
How pleasant that must sound to Semperian’s owners - especially the Daily Mail Senior Executives Pension Fund. Those senior executives all go private, their paper gets to slag off the NHS at every turn, yet their pension pots are being enlarged by taxpayers paying through the nose for all those dubious PFI deals. Which the Mail manages to ignore.
Paul Dacre’s annual pension now stands at £708,000. So if he and his fellow executives want to see better prostate cancer survival rates, they know what to do. Yes, of their own volition and without anaesthetic, they can get their wallets out. No pressure, chaps.