Wednesday, March 19, 2008

 

Shouldn't it be Heather Mills paying Paul McCartney?

In a fair world, Lady Mucca, aka Heather Mills, would be charged with perjury and assault for her behaviour in the courtroom, and instead of getting any money at all in her own name (as against for her daughter, of course) ordered to pay back Sir Paul McCartney some of the large amount of money she has made off the back of his name; and to pay an additional amount as consideration for her lying attempts to damage his reputation, and to cover some of his loss of income through the blunting of his creative edge as a result of the marriage.
 
Some commentators have compared Mucca to a prostitute, but this is being very unkind to that profession. Unless you're as daft as Mr Spitzer, prostitutes are a lot cheaper than Mucca's hourly rate (several hundred pounds based on the £24 million for the short marriage). What is more, prostitutes ask for the money and negotiate up-front. It's only at the bottom end of the market that the service can fall way short of that promised, and it is only the criminals amongst them who, after providing the service, pretend their fee is higher than what had been negotiated.
 
What is promising about the judgement in this divorce case is the small fraction of the ex-husband's assets that have been awarded to the ex-wife. If such a ratio was applied in the cases of ordinary mortals, then the gravy train of divorce would really come off the rails.
 
The one justifiable basis in fairness (as opposed to law) for Mucca to get any award at all is that the case was initiated by Sir Paul. The great majority of divorces are initiated by the wife. If we had divorce law that properly rewarded unjustified breach of contract with no money at all, then what a better world it would be. You could go much further. Marriage for the great majority of wives is a clear benefit, in that they are supported to fulfil evolved natural roles as mother and home-maker. For men, unless they are in the small minority who really do enjoy their jobs, marriage is much more like a cost. Isn't there a case that a wife who for no good reason leaves the husband who has been consistently providing for her, owes her husband a refund?


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