We cannot know what is going through the mind of crazed ex-despot Muammar Gaddafi as he continues to flee Nato bombs and rebel snipers but we can have a good guess. He may be holed up gibbering in a basement in Sirte. He may be in Venezuela or working as a suspiciously taciturn short-order chef in a falafel bar in Tripoli. Wherever he is I wager there is one thing that causes the old dyed ringlets to shake with rage, one thought that brings the foam to the corner of his champing jaws and that is the treachery of all those he thought of as friends. And of those who have ratted on him in the last six months, there is one particular group of traitors that he would like to cast I bet to the nethermost fire-bubbling pit of hell. Never mind the rebels, and all those snaky ex-ministers who chose to defect as soon as the going got tough. Forget the buxom female bodyguards who took the first plane back to Ukraine. For sheer duplicity there is no one to beat the British May the fleas of a thousand camels infest their armpits Gaddafi groans behind his dark glasses, pouring some hot sauce on the falafel. No wonder they talk about perfidious Albion, he mutters, and you can see why. It was only a few years ago that Tony Blair himself came out to his tent, almost snogged the Mad Dog, and proclaimed a new era of cooperation between Britain and Libya. The shooting of Yvonne Fletcher, the murder of hundreds of innocent people at Lockerbie all appeared forgotten as ever grander emanations of the British state were despatched by London to slobber over the colonels jackboots, and to help win oil contracts for British companies. In a series of retch-making overtures, British special forces offered to help train the Khamis brigade, one of Gaddafis most vicious military units. MI6 was apparently so keen to cooperate that it was prepared to trace phone numbers for his horrific secret police. The former Chief Inspector of Her Majestys prisons was sent out to devise some collaboration between the British prison service and the dungeons of Tripoli. Lord Kinnock was one of many involved in a weird programme of educational cooperation that reached its emetic climax in a personal contribution by Tony Blair to the Phd thesis of one of Gaddafis whacko sons. The poor Duke of York was ordered by the Foreign Office to go and set the seal on a new stable partnership between Britain and Libya. Gaddafi thought he was quids in, and then what happens? A spot of bother with some rebels in Benghazi, a faint suggestion that his regime might be in trouble (and that he might no longer be the go-to man for oil contracts) and ka-booom The very Brits who have been oiling up to him are now flying sorties over Tripoli and trying to kill him and his family. Yes, Gaddafi must be feeling bitter about the whole thing; and, of course, he is not alone in being cynically courted, fawned over and feted by the British establishment, and then ruthlessly vilified and attacked. Compare the fate of Gaddafi with that of, say, Sir Fred Goodwin and all the other bankers and super-rich excrescences of the capitalist system. It was only a few years ago that government ministers, and indeed politicians of all parties, were engaged in a protracted cringe before the wealth-generating power of the Masters of the Universe. And the bankers, in turn, became quite used to the flattery. They were put on important task forces to improve the governance of the country. They were given knighthoods for services to banking. They would sit at posh dinners with politicians beside them behaving in the manner, let us be frank, of some seductive courtesan. You so rich Your hedge fund so massive Me love you long time And now look at the bankers, and all the other filthy rich characters once shamelessly extolled by Peter Mandelson. Not a day goes by without their foxholes being bombed and re-bombed by the very politicians who once sought their favour. The country is seemingly engaged in an extraordinary repudiation of free-market capitalism. I dont think I am dreaming, but I have read recently two pieces, in this space, by some of the conservative journalists I admire the most. One said (forgive me if I summarise) that the Left had been right all along, and that the country was plainly run by a money-grubbing cabal. The other said (I compress) that the bankers had caused the recent riots. A brace of brilliant new Tory MPs is today arguing that corporate decisions should be invigilated by some public protagonist to make sure they are in the interests of the country as a whole, and not just shareholders. Whatever the merits of these points, they were not what these characters were saying only a few years ago about bankers or wealth creation. Of course, both these transformations in attitude towards Gaddafi and the bankers could be connected with the change in government. They might be all to do with the replacement of creepy sucky-up Labour by noble and fearless Tories. A cynic might say, however, that if the revolution had not begun in Benghazi it is all too likely that the oiling to Gaddafi would have continued because that was the British economic interest. And the same lesson applies, in reverse, to the currently despised capitalists. Sooner or later the upswing will return, and since we are unlikely to find any real alternative to free market capitalism, there will be a new bull market and a new round of speculation and a new breed of super-rich; and as soon as most people feel richer, and the squeezed middle feels less vengeful why then the politicians will be clustering around the money-makers again, like flies around a jam jar; and as soon as it is safe to do so, they will claim that it is in the national interest to encourage wealth creation, just as it was in the national interest to go for Gaddafis oil deals. It may all sound reprehensible, but I am afraid its called politics. The Telegraph