Wednesday, October 29, 2008

In my opinion - Should we blame shallow celebs?

As a libertarian I just wonder if we can blame entirely celebs like Ross and Brand, for their actions, we the British public regularly tune into see or hear their mediocre talents and skills.

Jonathan Ross has apparently made a career out of sycophantic interviews mixed with innuendo, which if he was some spotty school boy talking to his mates would not be out of the ordinary, Russell Brand less well known, has a confrontational style of humour which from what I've seen, relies almost exclusively on his sexual appetites, both of whom provide mindless entertainment for adults who choose to watch or listen to their performances, which for me is OK.

Still the controversy raging over their, school boy, antics in making what can really only accepted as arrogant offensive telephone calls to Andrew Sachs is not just some storm in a tea cup, its a chance for the public to express their distaste of celebrates or anyone thinking, they are somehow immune from common decency, I hope that both Jonathan Ross, and Russell Brand find themselves unemployable for some time.

If either of these jokers feel offended, they might like to consider how ordinary members of the public would be treated, leaving abusive messages on the answer phones belonging to the elderly, I'd like to think that society would be harsh.

I think yobbish behaviour toward any 78 year old, broadcast as entertainment is a new low for broadcasters even after last years fraudulent quiz shows.

If you want make yourself sick I suggest you take a butchers at this page from the BBC Click here, Russell Brands to view his latest performance!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Thanet Tory's washed up on our Sandy Beaches

I note that "This is Kent" (also Thanet Times) website has the story of Thanet councils new sell off, as you will know, Northdown House is currently under threat of being sold off, it appears Thanet Council is hell bent on selling this, come what may, and will probably ignore the covenants protecting Northdown Park estate, just to spite the local community.

Anyway it seems that Roger Latchford joined Doug Brown, major projects?, and Justin Thompson asset manager to announce the new asset sale list which includes at least one old favourite the Montefiore Games Centre, although no Northdown House, apparently they'll have another consultation and attempt to sidestep obligations to maintain the listed property by doing some deal with the usual rag bag of developers so loved by TDC.

I just wonder when and if Roger Latchford and Sandy Ezekiel will get together and actually give a consistent answer on Northdown House.

Fresh controversy, as Thanet council delves to the bottom of the barrel or rather edge of the island, with a couple of sections of beach, at Marine Terrace Margate (is that part of the main beach) and Viking Bay Broadstairs (blimey that will upset the ambience, still their quite snobby in those parts).

Quite what you would do with a bit of beach, I'm not sure but maybe you could flog it off to a local publican or caterer and put lines of deck chairs out like they do in some parts of the Med.

Anyway what an achievement, Sandy and co will effectively close part of our beaches just to fill the holes created in finances by his administration, I believe TDC literature refers to 27 miles of beaches, perhaps in future they'll have to add that you'll need to get your wallet out for some of them.

What a legacy Sandy's building, Margate High St. dead, millions wasted on the M&S building in Margate, Dreamland dead and buried, and now two beaches presumably to be fenced off, two museums closed in the last few months, Margate Library turned into an extension of TDC offices mainly dealing with housing benefits enquiries, rates and fines. What more can this crowd do ?

The stark reality of course is this Thanet Council, is probably over staffed and inefficient, so these assets sales will take some of our heritage and in the short term, the council will put off the day it has to address the real fiscal problems, but sooner or later someone's going to have to sort Thanet Councils administration.

If Sandy and Roger can't sort things out perhaps it's time someone within the local conservative party with a bit of backbone consulted there colleagues, and ousted the current leadership.

Monday, October 27, 2008


For some reason Kent Council, really do have problems with freedom of information, as with my last posting, this time it concerns Kent TV and the Kent messenger group's, request for information concerning the feasibility study for Kent TV.

Fortunately for the taxpayer, libertarians and democrats whom seem to be in short supply in Maidstone, the Information Commissioner has ruled that the county council was wrong to withhold some information that had been asked for by the Kent messenger group.

It seems an extraordinary thing, that a county council, which apparently prides itself on being marvelous, excellent, five star or whatever the superlative happens to be, refuses to comply with some freedom of information requests.

We live in a democracy, and naturally expect a free flow of information into the public domain, this is yet another example, of Kent's failure, to communicate with the public, it's ironic that Kent TV which both Peter Gilroy, KCC chief executive and Paul Carter conservative leader have promoted as some advance in public communication, should itself be surrounded in the secrecy.

Surely I can't be the only person who expects politicians and council officers to uphold democracy?

Anyway if you'd like to read more about this click here for the story from Kent messenger group Kent online website, just on the Kent TV thing I might myself have something to add to that subject, as ever when referring to Kent TV, I find it necessary to point to my rights to freedom of expression as per article the European convention on human rights.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Top Tory wants to restrict freedom

In an unusually move Paul Carter Kent's senior Tory politician and the leader of Kent Council, has made a remarkable call for restrictions to the freedom of information act after earlier complaining about building rules and regulations.

Those who have followed the goings on of Kent Council, must often like me find themselves bemused at some of the enterprises Kent Council gets involved with, which are frequently notable inasmuch as they fall outside, the services you would expect of a local authority, for instance Kent TV, temporary employment agencies, bus and taxi services, health advice line, and this, which is something which I had forgotten about for a while, Oakwood House, the 37 bedroom hotel situated in Maidstone run by the blooming KCC .

Now since Paul Carter happens to be a Tory, you might think, how enterprising a conservative council, running businesses, which would be fair enough, if it weren't for the fact, that the taxpayer who probably subsidies these businesses, isn't able to see all the facts pertaining to them, nor can hard working business entrepreneurs, who risk there own money.

Paul Carter apparently cites business confidentiality as a reason for not disclosing full information about council owned businesses, but here is the reason he's wrong, in a fair market businesses shouldn't be subsidized by taxpayers, which because of Kent's secrecy we are unable to determine whether for instance business premises are cheaper than those commercially available thus giving council run business is an unfair advantage.

Assuming Kent Council are actually are running these businesses in a commercially proper manner, it seems nothing short of outrageous, that Kent Council who are under the leadership of Paul Carter, should wish to ignore freedom of interest inquiries and push presumably for legislation to stop us the taxpayer knowing what's going on.

As far as I'm aware, normal commercial businesses are required to publish accounts, so exactly what does Kent Council have to hide? Here's two possible answers ruthless efficiency or gross incompetence the truth is probably something in between, but if Paul Carter gets his way, we will never know. For me Kent council is like on of those loony London councils from the eighties, just what are they thinking!

PS Paul Carter also mentions in the Kent on Sunday newspaper, how he believes business is being stifled by rules and regulations, not surprisingly he makes no comment, how he would feel if he were having compete with companies subsidise by the taxpayer. I always thought Thanet had a lot of front with 26 miles of beaches but its nothing compared to Kents Tories!


In answer to some of the comments on the previous blog, anonymous 9:19 AM " Blogging will soon die if bloggers cannot take the flak...." I for one have had many hostile comments, not least various threats of violence (interestingly from those claiming to represent a particular type of road user, usually associated with men with a midlife crisis, mindless morons and not surprisingly quite a few of Thanet's leading political knobs).

Anonymous 9:53 PM " Many of the ones in Thanet (blogs) suffer from being right up their own arse" yes so what? " ECR is a joke" surely that's part of the blog, vain and self obsessed (that's part of the character) " I wish there were some better blogs here" try writing one, you smart arse!

In answer to Peter Checksfields, "where's the link to your blog" anonymous 9:53, the reply comes " I have a life and a job so I don't really want to blog"
Anonymous 9:53, suggests he doesn't like the local blogs, is more interested in global issues, suggests navel gazing is just shit, well that's just fine, but begs the question why you fill in your head with shit?

Incidentally I work, long hours, struggle to write this crap, love the feedback, even the rare occasion, when some complete idiot has the urge to chip in, well done! And thank you for your inspirational words, it's what blogging is all about.

Please note that I've written this using voice dictation software, and the above may contain errors, which if I can spot them later, will no doubt correct, but I must get down to Tesco's. Cheers

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Thankfully news of bloggings death is premature

BBC's website today poses the question is blogging dead, also it was an item in the radio four's today programme, apparently an article in a magazine called Wired suggested that blogging is now a thing of the past. Click here for the bloggings dead blog

Blogging is a useful method of communication, which not only compliments traditional media but also on occasion, takes over from local journalists, who I assume, feel uncomfortable at the possibility of upsetting, there local contacts which in the main, I would guess are tin pot politicians, and a mediocre bureaucrats.

Two fairly important stories, featured by Thanet's blogerati, would almost certainly have sunk without a trace, are the China Gateway project, which would have been nodded through by complacent councilors with barely a question raised, and of course perhaps more disturbing is story of a hundreds of tons of toxic chemicals leaked into the chalk below Thanet and possibly our drinking supply.

It is a measure of the state of both local and national journalism, that no newspaper that I have seen, has so far thought that 470 tons of dangerous solvent, recovered from local aquifer is newsworthy. I would imagine that the potential danger to Thanet residents is considerable although fortunately it would appear not to be as serious as the Camelford incident.

It's difficult to draw conclusions at the motives of local editors and journalists who appear to have ignored a major story, are they lazy, incompetent, or perhaps just too friendly with the vested interests.

I note that some critics but also readers of local blogs, accuse us bloggers of sensationalism etc. with one particularly extraordinary attack on ECR recently, it's clear to most people, that without the likes of Rick, Michael Child, Biggles and ECR we would know considerably less about Thanet, if we just relied on The Extra, The Gazette and yourthanet.

Monday, October 20, 2008


I had my feet up this weekend as far as the blogging thing goes, Sunday being my 52nd Birthday, I thought I'd head to London for a bit of culture, spent the morning with Mrs Me in Tate Britain, which went well, started off, with two cups of coffee, a slice of fruit cake (with change from a tenner) and a free copy of the Observer, free parking (on Sunday) only upset being when my mobile went off in the gallery dramatised by an attendant going near hysterical, blimey, its only a phone (I always turn off for films, theatre, courses and funerals) god knows what a visit to Margate Gateway Library would do to this women.

Even exposure to some great works held at the Tate eventually palls and by about 2pm Mrs Me was getting a tad fractious, so fresh air and a walk down the Thames toward Parliament Square across Westminster Bridge sauntering along the South Bank until coming up to the disused power station now trading as Tate Modern.I understand that Tate Modern has been a great success, why or how are beyond me, entering the large space which I think is called the Turbine gallery or whatever, populated with bunk beds and massive sculptures which unlike art from an earlier age does not give pleasure or pain or escapism or indeed pass on any emotion it just seems, not only joyless but meaningless.

To understand modern art, I think you have to be conditioned, as an example strolling through Tate Modern we stumbled upon a pile of bricks, these were stacked two high perhaps five or six across and maybe 8 or 9 length ways, my natural reaction is what the ****! now had this been at work I would no doubt moved the bricks to the wall, so the didn't become a tripping hazard but if your told its art theirs the urge to conform (I managed to resist). Perhaps the most interest thing you notice walking round is how most visitors spend more time reading the description of exhibits than looking at the "art works" themselves.

In the hour or so I made myself walk round, probably the only thing that was familiar and or vaguely engaging was Roy Lichtenstein's Whaam, although this always leaves me wanting to see the whole comic.
Earlier in Tate Britain we had the privilege of looking at some of Tracy Emin's stuff which was (this is my opinion) primitive and well within the capabilities of any angry teenager, although I must say I have some sympathy with the piece "Sad Shower in New York" I've only stayed in cheap Hotels in that part of the world and agree the plumbing is crap, (were all adults here I assume, if not look away now),"Fuck you Eddy", to be honest is reminiscent of much, local art graffiti genre which I believe can still be found in local toilets (give me banksy any day) , "Tracy Emin C.V." comprises several pages and if it were me, I'd consider getting someone to type it up and also condensing the content down to one page, still what do I know, Tracy Emin is worth millions, me not quite so much.
Outside the Tate Modern, was I think a demonstration of sorts, in the form of a Funeral officiated by Contemporary Art Collective, I had a word with one of the participants who mumbled about their being to much money producing too much worthless art, but still for all I know maybe their part of the industry.Anyway I don't think I'll get any opposition next year from Mrs Me if I suggest a visit to the air museum at Duxford.

Finally this quote from Tracy 'Being an artist isn't just about making nice things, or people patting you on the back; it's some kind of communication, a message'. Too right, I reckon this also goes for bloggers as well, if any rich art collector or patron would like to bung a few quid toward Bignews you can always email me.

Tate Britain Tracy Emin exhibit

PS Tate Britain has a nice selection of Turner stuff, which I'll be surprised if it ever washes up in Margate


Fridays Gazette did nothing to clear up the mystery of Thanet councils handling of Northdown House even the great leader Sandy Ezekiel is unable to give a clear answer as to whats going on with Northdowh House, to me it looks like as if a sort of Bermuda Triangle has enveloped that part of Margate, resulting in facts just dissappearing only to emerge as spin. Anyway I've just sent an email to Thanet's top man in the hope that a clear answer might emerge.

Email Text

So What is the answer on Northdown House

Cllr Mr Ezekiel

I understand according to last weeks Isle of Thanet Gazette, that when asked if TDC had evicted Thanet Leisure Force from Northdown house , your answer was "It is not a case of them being evicted but us not being able to afford to have them there..."

Since I received the following in an email a while ago from your Deputy Mr Latchford "Tony thank you for your e-mail to answer your question. Northdown House is currently on the 2009/10 disposal list which will be considered next year.The TLF decision to cease taking bookings after 31 Dec is a matter for TLF, in the meantime TDC are looking into a whole range of options.I truly cannot say anything further at this time.Thank you for your interest,
Roger Latchford"

Cllr Mr Latchford in answer to my request to explain the haste and confusion, surrounding Northdown House, appears to suggests that TLF took the decision to vacate, however your answer seems to imply that is not the case.

Did Thanet council, instruct TLF not to take bookings for Northdown House, yes or no?

The covenants on this property, require that the whole property be maintained in perpetuity for the benefit of the public, so are we to assume that the flats you refer to, will be some new experiment in communal living.

The figure of £30,000 is given as cost to taxpayers to maintain the property, which sounds like a lot until you look at the cost of employing the 600 odd at TDC, or preparing planning briefs which are mainly for the benefit of Developers like the Dreamland document or more recently Arlington.

Finally I would like to know, just how much money has been wasted on legal advice concerning covenants designed to protect this property from the sort of action your apparently considering, which is to flog the property to next developer?

regards tony flaig

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Till recently I thought that Kent TV*, was about as far as those geniuses at Kent Council, could go to waste money on services, which were already available, in adequate quantity and quality but no I was wrong.

Last week Kent council, launched a completely unnecessary, uncalled for new service, which for my money and well some of it is my money, is utterly wasteful and seems as if its just some new play thing for KCC busy bodies, as if they don't have enough on their plate like clawing back the fifty million quid lost to Iceland on top of the 8 million wasted on Turner Mark 1

Anyway here's what they have to say about it "Kent Health Watch will act as a 'signposting' service that points callers in the right direction. It will help ensure that all feedback about health and social care services in Kent - including compliments or complaints, comments or concerns - are captured and used to improve services. The Leader of Kent County Council Paul Carter said: "There is much public debate about the quality and variability of health and social care services around the country." (What a load of old Tosh - tony flaig)

Maybe its just me but if I want to deal with medical matters here's my signpost helpline 999 for emergencies, my local surgery for other health concerns (insert your doctors number here), I could go on....

Right now the management of Bignews Margate are thinking of launching "Kent wealth watch" which will give taxpayers a pointer to cretinous ideas coming from some local authorities who are happy to be (those of a weak and feeble nature please look away) pissing our money away on pointless projects.

* I refer to Kent TV the KCC project not any contractor or supplier.

PS Do you think KCC leader Paul Carter does home visitis?

KCC Health Watch waffle

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


The future of Northdown House despite weeks of speculation, is still looking bleak, as far as I can guess for two reasons, one I reckon Sandy Ezekiel's Tory administration has some unpublished agenda which favours, local property speculators and secondly compliant council officers who seem to lack any inclination to advise political masters on right and wrong.

The key point about Northdown House is that, use of the property is covered by covenants on the property, which preclude any use other than, that which is open to the local community use.Perhaps Richard Samuel the council Chief Executive could spell it out to the great leader.

I see that "plain jane"(Jane Wenham-Jones) will be concluding her interview with SandyEzekiel, which started last week in her Gazette column , with a rather easygoing sympathetic meander through Margate in the company of Sandy, this weeks episode will apparently include China Gateway, and Northdown house. Lets hope plain jane steps up a gear and asks some pertinent questions, like why is the council so vague about Northdown House, why did his colleague send me an email which seems to conflict with the truth.

As I understand it, and no council officer has denied this to me, the council have told Thanet Leisure force they can no longer take bookings for the property after the end of the year, so why not confirm this and then give us taxpayers a reason why Northdown House, which currently makes a small profit will from the start of the year become a liability.

The impression I get is that Thanet's political leadership think they're so bloody important they can ignore legal niceties, and despite the legal obligations of the Council, will ignore the public out of spite and ignorance. Rather than maintain the status quo, local tories will spend a fortune (yours) before they comply with their legal obligations.

This whole episode seems odd, just why would anyone want to sell off Northdown House to some get rich quick developer?

Monday, October 13, 2008


Where's my blooming bin, Shirley?

A story in Fridays Gazette, that highlighted, what appears to be a typically mean and stupid decision by Thanet Council to provide a block of 15 flats with just, four wheelie bins reminded me of my own bin situation.

Despite Shirley Tomlinson promising delivery of Black & Blue wheelie bins in September-October these have yet to materialise here at Flaig Mansions. I cannot tell you how disappointing it has been to arrive home from work and not find a couple of factory fresh council bins parked in the drive.

My message to Thanet's Commercial and Environmental supremo is to get a move on, you've 20 days left. Excuse the irritable attitude its just that since your letter arrived weeks ago, with all those rules and regulations, us taxpayers are meant to follow, it would be nice if you delivered these bins on time.

Incidentally why is that these bins have to be out ready for collection by 6am, for the likes of me who's use to getting up early its not a problem, but think of the elderly or those who lead a nine till five existence, admittedly its a good idea to get Thanets 2nd & 3rd generation benefit skivers out of bed before dawn but for the rest of us its a bloody cheek .

Finally I read back in September that wheelie bins were in short supply if this is the case maybe Shirley Tomilinson ought issue a statement!

Daily Mail article

My earlier bin story

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Kent Council Magazine

"Around Kent" Kent councils regular quarterly publication, recently got shoved through the letter boxes of overtaxed Kent residents, if your familiar with this publication you'll be aware of the contents which are basic local authority propaganda* mixed with occasional gems like this from editor Shelley Whittaker refering to the change from newspaper format to magazine "Leader Paul Carter needed convincing about changing the format at first he felt you might think we were wasting money........." later Shelley Whittaker goes on to tell us how Paul saw the logic of the format change, my reaction of course is somewhat different, for one as a taxpayer I don't give a flying toss, what Paul Carter thinks, what's important is what the paying public feel.

My overall impression of Kent's Media output is that it has too much reference to what Paul Carter may or may not think indeed last edition carried not one but two articles saying how blooming marvelous (sorry excellent) Kent council was first by Kents highest paid employee Peter Gilroy (circa quarter million wedge PA) and then Paul Carter, not surprisingly no balance in as much as I assume that sum of us think Kent council is not that well run, particularly when it squanders millions, every year on media.

The editor makes the suggestion that the new style publication will attract advertising although rather disappointingly the only advertising that's visible, if that's what it is, comes from Kent councils own ventures like Kent Health Watch, Kent TV (when referring to Kent TV, I am making no reference to companies contracted to produce Taxpayer funded TV).

Anyway if you've missed recent editions of "Around Kent" click here

*I use word propaganda in this sense "Information that is spread for the purpose of promoting some cause" so please no more threats of legal action from minor media companies.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Westwood Cross and the Costa Muffins

Thought for the Day

As ever I like to bring you the big stories, the ones that matter to all, and this is it. Last Saturday strolling around the wind swept Westwood Cross shopping area, in the company of Mrs Me, after some pleading, agreement was reached, to give the shopping a break and sit down, with a cup of coffee.

Shuffling along in rather a long queue, we eventually got parallel with the cakes, having built up an appetite, I suggested that we each have a cake or muffin, to soak up one of those bladder filling buckets of coffee, they call, cups.

Not having our glasses we focused on the prices, of their confections, which offered two prices on each type, not being able to read the small print underneath the price, we at first assumed that they were offering a generous discount for two, however, on checking the offer (with glasses on), the lower price was for chomping the cake outside, with a special premium price for consumption inside the premises.

This naturally (for me) this raised the question, what if on purchase of maybe a blueberry muffin, I decided to go for the take out price, then as swam through a lake of coffee, got hungry, would I then be charged with theft, non payment of rent or what.

Fortunately for me this dilemma, didn't arise as the young lady serving us, assumed that we would not be able to resist instant gratification and charged the higher price anyway. I say we, but Mrs Me declined, although typically demanded a little bit of my muffin*, which if I don't give into, results in accusations of being "greedy".

Anyway I been leaving the house at five in the morning this week and not returning till seven or later in the evening, no doubt I've missed fearless Thanet Councillors putting up a sterling defence to China Gateway developers, must get a paper.

*I personally believe I've had better and reckon that £1.75 is a tad overpriced! ( A sausage & egg McMuffin comes to you freshly cooked for only £1.59 in store or take away!) ( not a direct comparison I know)

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

To Comment or not

The following is a personal opinion, which is hastily written as I've little time to blog this week, believe it or not I usually take some effort to consider, what to say this will be, off the cuff and getting home just in time to see the BBC's take on China Gateway, makes it difficult not too (inside out south east).

I wouldn't say bias, was a word that would do, but sycophantic comes to mind in as much as journalists tend to favour business and establishment figures when covering a story and not much probing, also shallow as in detail which appeared to be glossed over. No mention of political er..... donations?

Tomorrow is of course the big vote for Thanet council, on China Gateway and I for one doubt that Thanet councillors will show much backbone, in their handling of this item. Even more irritating for the likes of me, who will not be able to attend the meeting, is the thought that although Thanet council have the capability to video, the councils planning proceedings and make them available on the internet, they almost certainly wont. Its my theory that if there's one thing petty bureaucrats (or officers as they like to call themselves) don't like its the public taking an interest in the workings of local government.

I have repeatedly asked for clarification regarding another controversial topic that of Northdown house and have yet to get any reply that I consider either complete or clarifies the councils intention despite writing to the councils Chief Executive.

PS I feel more inclined to believe the news that Manston Airport plans a big expansion, offer s more than China Gate ever will, which I know will offend the likes of ECR but tough. Just a little concerned about the timing of their plans on the eve of the China Gateway thing.

Sunday, October 05, 2008


Kent police have offered compensation to animal rights activists, the protesters who had planned to demonstrate were turned back from Dover docks by Kent police who escorted their coach back to London.

This was reported in the independent newspaper a few days ago, apparently Kent police threatened the protesters with arrest, photographed the occupants of the coach including a disable child and several elderly people and would not allow the coach to stop for breaks on the journey back.

The coach party was made up of ALF supporters, the ALF apparently advocates economic damage on those it considers profit from exploitation of animals, and its likely that mainstream opinion would be that their views are extreme but whether you agree with their aims or not, surely whilst people are behaving lawfully its not for Kent police to arbitrarily withdraw normal civil liberties and effectively arrest British citizens for membership of groups that aren't every ones cup of tea.

I see in today's Kent on Sunday that Michael Fuller (Kent's Chief Constable) is possibly considering applying for the vacant position of Metropolitan Police Commissioner, maybe before he leaves he might like to say sorry or have the officer responsible apologise to those who appear to have had been unlawfully denied the right to protest.

Whether we agree or not with various political groups, citizens have a right to protest lawfully, and since Kent police have already offered to pay out £1,250 to 32 citizens in an out of court settlement, clearly Kent police aren't just giving our hard earned cash because they feel generous, so lets hope apart from saying sorry, Mr Fuller also sees that the officer responsible is penalised, it may not occur to the average copper but civil liberties are one of those things their supposed to protect.

the independent story

Perfect Sunday

Is their any better time of the week than Sunday morning, particularly when you don't have to go to work, which in my case is a rare thing enhanced by the thought of the atrocious weather conditions outside. The knowledge that many who work my industry will be out in the rain does not make me feel guilty, particularly since I got a wake up call, a while after midnight from someone in north London, wanting to know where I was, apparently my name (and phone number) appeared in error on the paper work, for some job.

Enough of work, I will no doubt spend my day doing stuff, my particular pleasure trawling through the papers for something to comment on, although you cant beat the professionals, my current favourite being Rod Liddle in the Sunday Times, talking about "The wrong sort of vice girl" (Sarah Palin), makes this observation following her TV debate "by employing the clever strategy of not answering anything properly, and then winking in the manner of a mid-market call girl, she emerged a sort of victor. Despite revealing the intellect and political experience of a whelk. A heartbeat away, remember"

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Ladyman China Gateway Advocate

Just a quick point, and I understand bertie biggles also gives it a mention, Ladyman in this weeks Thanet Extra apparently sets out to dispels myths in his column over China Gateway.

In common with other pro China Gate advocates, he suggest upwards of 2000 jobs will be created but despite dispelling myths, bases this on what appears to be conjecture and bull.

One fact we do know in all this, is that Stephen Ladymans constituency party benefited to the tune of £25,000, Ken Wills told Kent on Sunday newspaper that he "made the £25,000 donation because he wanted to support Dr Ladyman, who, he said, has a “visionary” view of how to develop the area".

Lucky coincidence that both Ken Wills of CGP and Ladyman MP (till the next election) support the China Gateway vision.

I just wonder what my vision would be like should someone decide to plonk £25,000 towards Bignews Margates office expenses, naturally I would declare such a donation but would it er cloud my judgement.

I must say I found Roger Gales View to be a tad more balanced.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008


Mr Puss is none to pleased having read my interview with Tom Betts in today's yourthanet, first off he is not happy being portrayed as some sort of household accessory, nor does he like cheap publicity, like an unauthorised photo of himself being published inside The Gazette. He would also like to refute the idea that he spends most of his time, asleep, not something he's aware of.

The inference that he is just some air head, is one that hurts the most, in an attempt to refute this line of thinking Puss has been involved in some tough experiments in cognition. Recently his powers of reasoning, perception and dexterity were put to the test with remarkable results, which like all great discovery's was the result of chance.

After he had been complaining about a well know brand of cat food, I dismissed his objections, as I put down his dinner, with a phrase I remembered from my childhood "you'll just have to sort the bones out of that!", the purpose of which I think was to distract inquisitive children. Anyhow Mr Puss obviously took this as a challenge, since ten minutes later that's exactly what he'd done sorted out the bone shaped bits.

For more on Mr Puss click here

Finally Mr Puss hopes to see this blog return to more serious comment tomorrow.

To read yourthanet click here and follow links


Hard decisions save local news, easy ones don't
As many of you will have noticed, or not as the case maybe, last week Kent Messenger Group announced 61 redundancies throughout their business which will still leave 580 with a job and presumably a life, I see that local councillor Ken Gregory (conservative) suggested or rather urged that "you all to stop supporting any KM company". In fairness this appears to have been in part a reaction to a friend being made redundant after 27years, but realistically what are businesses meant to do, when revenues fall, pray for a miracle or take the uncomfortable decisions which will safeguard the majority of employees jobs.

Directors of KM Group had to make a difficult business decision, which hopefully will also result in maintaining an important part of Kent's media, I just wonder if Mr Gregory has ever run a business and would appreciate the likely outcome of not cutting back overheads when revenues are reduced.

Local broadcast news is currently poor but because of a weak and feeble regulatory body OFCOM its going to get a lot worse. ITV Meridain are about to, lose a 100 odd staff, which will probably return local news back to the analogue age, when the southern TV company used to have in depth news coverage of events in Southampton and little else.

I cannot believe that ITV actually need to cut back on regional news, I don't doubt if it was possible ITV would be all quiz shows, which reminds me, how come as far as I can remember, nobody at ITV management has been arrested for fraud as a result of those previously crooked game shows, still I suppose we would have to blame another weak regulatory body, the police.

OFCOM made an easy decision to allow ITV to end public service broadcasting, not that Meridian has offered much in the way of local news, with its reliance of news from your back garden ( I can't remember the name of the feature where viewers send in video of local fetes or whatever). As I say things were already desperate at ITV Local as this request received earlier this year from one of meridian minions would suggest "I have just come across your Thanet blog and wondered if you would like to be a guest blogger on ITV Meridian?" ( I declined when I discovered there was no wonga involved).

Still where can you read news about the appalling plight of local broadcast news, Kent Messengers Kent online which will survive unlike local meridian news which wont.

Kent Messenger, Meridian Story click here

PS Lets hope local news coverage doesn't get depleted any further, imagine a world with just bloggers, making up their own stories instead of relying on professional ones.