The Department of Information last night issued what must be, in the annals of its hallowed history, the most despicably iron-curtain piece of Newspeak ever to have been officially published by a government not bearing a hammer and a sickle on its badges.

It took plenty of time to reach its point. There’s that classic Bill Hicks line: “If guys could blow themselves, ladies, you’d be alone in this room right now. Watching an empty stage”. Not if Konrad Mizzi found a way. 

He blows himself right there on stage because he wants all of us to see how far he can bend himself, how much he can lie to himself, how wilful he is in believing his own lies. Only that way can he hope we might get to believe those lies too.

He says the courts dismissed the evidence of his corruption. When of course the whole point was that the court refused to look at the evidence at all for whatever lily-livered, legally unsound reasons it had to disagree that a Magisterial inquiry into evidence that has yet to be assessed might be a fall-back plan when utterly compromised and politically-controlled police refuse to their job.

But then Konrad Mizzi’s DOI statement gets to its climax and he’s not going to stand up straight for the final flourish. He announces, with put on magnanimity that is less sincere than concealer on a wrinkled octogenarian rent boy, that — get this — “using media law to punish those who made such allegations would serve no purpose greater than that which has already been decided by the Courts”.

So he goes on to withdraw his own libel suits against Simon Busuttil, Jason Azzopardi, Beppe Fenech Adami (as far as can be determined so far) which he had filed before more evidence emerged to back up the Panama Papers findings.

Now consider the timing of this withdrawal.

If it is true that the “Courts had decided there is no evidence supporting allegations of wrongdoing” which is what he says, his libel cases would have been slam dunk. Respondents would have been unable to provide any evidence backing up their assertions about him and would have been made to pay him damages. Konrad Mizzi says that making Simon Busuttil et alia “shoulder monetary cost for their lies” is redundant because in any case “they already lost political credibility”.

Of course, he could have waited to win the libel suits and when compensation to him is ordered (and his lawyers are paid) he could have simply not cashed the cheques paid out to him and very publicly gloat over the humiliation of his critics instead.

Could have, I said? Really, he couldn’t.

Because now you must consider the real reason for the timing of this withdrawal.

Karl Cini, the Nexia BT accountant who actually wrote that leaked email to Mossack Fonseca was due to testify as respondents’ witness called to explain why he told the disgraced Panama law-firm that Konrad Mizzi (and Keith Schembri) were due to receive €5,000 every day from two companies in Dubai, one of which is owned by the factotum of the energy company Konrad Mizzi (and Keith Schembri) closed a deal with on behalf of the government.

Would Karl Cini have lied under oath for Konrad Mizzi? Would he fuck.

Karl Cini has already been called in by the police for interrogation and he knows he’s living on a knife’s edge. Karl Cini is quite possibly one of the only three men alive — who is not Konrad Mizzi or Keith Schembri themselves — who knows what really happened. He is in the full confidence of this criminal conspiracy. He is the last person on earth that Konrad Mizzi and Keith Schembri can afford to allow under oath in an open court facing hostile lawyers armed with leaks and journalistic investigations and weighing the political reputation, such as it is, of Konrad Mizzi against the risks of his own indictment for money laundering, professional exile and a walloping for perjury in cases of crimes — corruption of politicians — with no statute of limitations.

There — putting the star witness for the prosecution that never was back in the gimp’s box — is the unwritten climax of Konrad Mizzi’s stomach-turning stage performance.

Now he stands and faces us with that stupid smile of his, all flushed and rather short of breath and liquifying hair-gel oozing down his quivering lips. And he wants us to think that someone else, not him, has just lost their political credibility.

He never had any to begin with, the crook. 

Fancy him starting a new lawsuit over this because he doesn’t like the metaphor.

In the meantime, if Simon Busuttil et al are going to learn anything from the Caruana Galizia lads, after paying a huge court bill for withdrawing these cases, Konrad Mizzi is now going to have to face a fresh set of lawsuits for filing vexatious libel suits in the first place. Because if you sue someone and then quit the court case short before the evidence can be heard you are clearly showing yourself to have used the courts tactically, wasting a lot of people’s time and money that you’ll be expected to pay for.

Of course, Konrad Mizzi will think that will be a small dent on his €5,000 a day cash flow. Crook.

PS: Konrad Mizzi, how quickly can you repeat that act? Perhaps you should know more is coming your way, old man, and you’ll still need to keep smiling as you pretend this isn’t happening.