FOLLOWING Labour Chairman Charles Clarke's rebuke to the media for bringing democratic politics into disrepute, the Daily Mail would like to say how dreadfully sorry it is for 'piously and hypocritically' exposing the following:
The Formula One affair, when Labour took £1million from Bernie Ecclestone, then performed a screeching U-turn over the ban on tobacco advertising in sport.
The Mandelson mortgage saga, when the former Industry Secretary - lying to his building society - secretly borrowed £373,000 from the dishonest Paymaster General, Geoffrey Robinson, while his department was investigating Mr Robinson's business dealings.
The activities of that same Mr Robinson, who gave free holidays to Mr Blair while lying to Parliament over money he took from the crooked Robert Maxwell.
The affair of former European Trade Minister Lord Simon who, while in office, failed to declare shares in BP worth £2million.
The success of the billionaire Hinduja brothers in receiving British passports after giving £1million to the Dome, even though they were under investigation for serious criminal offences in India.
The way Keith Vaz could survive for so long in Government, despite the serious allegations against him and his systematic obstruction of inquiries by the then Parliamentary watchdog Elizabeth Filkin.
The charge by Mrs Filkin that New Labour has 'corrupted' the Parliamentary watchdog system.
The favours showered by Mr Blair on Lakshmi Mittal to help him secure a Romanian steelworks - which would destroy British jobs - after he gave Labour £125,000. Mr Blair claimed he was helping a 'British' firm, but fewer than 100 of Mr Mittal's 125,000 employees are British.
The serial lying by Stephen Byers and the despicable behaviour of his special adviser Jo Moore, who thought September 11 a good day to 'bury' bad news.
The resignation of Scotland's First Minister, Henry McLeish, for fiddling his allowances.
The way Mr Blair ennobled former flatmate Charlie Falconer and tennis partner Michael Levy, giving both influential roles in Government. It emerged that the multi-millionaire Lord Levy paid as little as £5,000 in one tax year. And he has been paid a £100,000 fee by an Australian entrepreneur, allegedly for access to Ministers.
The systematic smearing of anyone who criticises the Government, from Paddington crash survivor Pam Warren to 94-year-old NHS patient Rose Addis.
The way Whitehall's information machine has been hijacked by New Labour's propagandist-in-chief Alastair Campbell, while impartial departmental Press chiefs have been sacked.
The £32million contract awarded to Paul Drayson of PowderJect to supply the Government with smallpox vaccine - a vaccine made abroad - after he made two payments of £50,000 to Labour.
The £100,000 given to the party by Richard Desmond, days after his takeover of Express Newspapers was waved through by Ministers. Former Labour general secretary Margaret McDonagh later joined his company.
The politicisation of the BBC by appointing Labour donors Greg Dyke and Gavyn Davies as Director-General and Chairman.
And most recently, the mockery being made of Civil Service rules of conduct with Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon's special adviser taking a job lobbying for arms firms.
Heaven forbid that we should suggest the slightest hint of impropriety in any of these activities. So let us make amends.
New Labour is as honest as the day is long. The reports described above were all got up by the Press.
Mr Campbell is not a mendacious manipulator of the media, but a Titan of truth. Messrs Mandelson and Byers should be canonised for their services to veracity.
And if you look at the bottom of the garden, you may catch a glimpse of fairies dancing.
© Daily Mail, 2002.