Sunday, September 29, 2013

Labour out in force for Godwin Rd art installation

Residents of Godwin Rd. may well have been a tad perturbed to find vehicular access blocked on Sunday, however I'm sure they will be relieved to find it was in a good cause.

big day for Thanet council "events" bods to publicise the new outdoor sculpture of Alex Chinneck, basically craftsmen have attached a facade to the building giving the impression that the front of the building has slipped into the garden, revealing part of the top floor.

Quite a crowd gathered which presumably was why the road was closed, present also was a cherry picker which appeared to be there to allow the public to view the surreal art work from roof top level. ( Trust all the proper risk assessments were done, although if it were my worksite I might insist those in the basket twenty foot up would be safer with a harness)

A big thanks to the sponsors who include, you & I via the arts council, TDC, and also commercial companies.

As you might expect although the reason is unclear five Labour councillors, were present, presumably there to be snapped by local press, not entirely sure what their contribution is but politics is politics. Wonder if they'll ever pose in Dalby Square.

Anyway the artwork is unusual, we'll worth taking a gander, I'm told that it will there for the next year, a marvelous addition to Margate's growing arty ness credentials. 

My moneys on Cameron - Millibands all fracked out!

It's that last week of the political conference season, and while I'm no apologist for conservative politicians on the basis of what's on offer, and performance, David Cameron, is the best realistic choice for the next parliament.

This morning the Prime Minister, on the Andrew Marr show gave a confident performance, the sort of questions that Ed Milliband stumbled and tripped over, Cameron seemed to glide through, of course both, say little of substance and what they do say is crafted to please everyone, a particularly awkward subject the question of women wearing a veil, the PM suggested it wasn't a subject for legislation but supported individual choice, however some institutions insist on rules requiring that a women cannot hide which he also agreed with, I think with Ed viewers witnessed him struggle in a clumsy response as he searched his brain for the right answer.

As much as Nick Clegg is the best of the bunch and represents the middle ground of political thinking with its heart in an equal society, the leader of the next government will almost certainly be Ed or David, and I have to say this about Labour politicians, principal and even morality have long left the building, in the last government, they could not have done more harm to working people if they tried, lying and cheating all the way.

Labour politicians these days are soulless hulks going through the motions, a bit like fracking, pump a lot of hot air into their heads about past heritage of welfare, health service, working people, and they're momentarily revived, new energy is released, in small numbers, Labour politicians, are harmless but once they reach a critical mass, the side effects are cracks and fractures in both the economy and society.

Maybe it's the training at Eton or Conservatives sticking to their core values that allows Cameron to out perform Milliband, perhaps David appears better as Ed's been well and truly fracked as pressure builds from inside and outside, comparisons with Kinnock seem generous, pity really.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Councillor Rick Everitt - Who's not a reasonable person ? or Labour sink to personal abuse in harbour debacle.

Now there's a surprise Thanet labour party member Cllr  Rick Everett and significantly also a cabinet member, responsible for finance has decided to use personal attack, in an apparent defense of a policy, which has deprived the local tax payer of well over 3 million pounds.

In a letter to the Thanet Gazette, the well tested and flawed argument that Thanet council is not responsible or negligent for the loss of revenue, from Ramsgate harbour following it's decision to allow an unsecured, multi million debt to accrue with TransEuropa ferries, councillor Everitt has changed tack, stating that "Sadly, Mr Driver is not a reasonable person." ( Rather discourteous not to refer to he as councillor Driver) Cllr Driver is generally quite passionate about his politics and just like most of us is shocked at the casual attitude of those privy to the TransEuropa finance arrangements kept secret until recently. 

No surprise that Cllr Everitt, falls to mention that not to long ago, presumably he, along with his leader Clive Hart, fully supported Labour's decision to support Cllr Ian Driver as a Candidate in Northwood over Mark Nottingham a hard working loyal long time Labour member.

In my view if Rick Everitt, thinks he is correct why doesn't he accuse his fellow councillors, those other independents who've also criticised Thanet council of not being reasonable persons, why I think he doesn't, is because those others, are perceived as moderate sensible people.

Now before diehard labour dinosaurs, bleat as they invariably do about me being mean to them, I have to say that Conservatives have to take as much blame (as a party that represents the business community) for TransEuropa there should have been someone with wit to understand the implications of not securing, what became an open ended credit arrangement.

It's clear that other creditors took steps to secure at least some of the money, including the port authorities of Ostend, why our council failed to protect taxpayers money is frankly a complete mystery.

In Cllr Everitt's letter he quite rightly suggests that it is reasonable for the council to look at all options for Ramsgate harbour, still unreasonably, he and others of his ilk refuse to accept that money had been lost, failing to understand that just because TDC didn't give money to TransEuropa, they did give them use of a capital asset owned by the community and no doubt continued send money on maintenance.

Going by the of Everitt, Clive Hart, Bob Bayford, Sue Mcgonical, those of you who rent property, hire cars, etc need not feel to concerned about running up debts and being expected to pay up.

The argument that we have somehow benefited, by allowing TransEuropa to trade while apparently insolvent is nonsense in my opinion, and the more labour argue the case the more stupid it seems, presumably TDC would have buried their heads in the sand, until the end of time.

Instead of insulting the intelligence of public, those who agreed to unsecured credit which amounts to a loan of your money, let's have some candour. 

Finally had the council either had the smarts or indeed minimal business skills to secure revenues owed, or pulled the plug three years ago there is a clear possibility that money could have been generated by attracting another solvent operator.

I suggest Mr Everitt consider who he represents, his consitutents or himself his colleagues in the Labour party/ Conservative councillors and of course well paid officers who presumably allowed the debt to mount uncontrolled.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Same old Labour as big Ed offers everything and nothing

How familiar, Ed Milliband, the latest in a long line of no-hope Labour leaders and I might say, leaders who offer to sort out corrupt union thugs, and never do, appeared on this mornings Andrew Marr show, failing to commit to union reform or anything sidestepping pretty much every question instead offering allsorts of inducements from apprenticeships to increase wages but clearly no substance to back any of his vague offer of jam tomorrow. 

Ed Milliband gave a masterclass in evading simple questions, still one thing's for sure, long after Ed's a blip in Labour history, crooked union leaders will be exercising their own prejudices on behalf and against their own people, in the grey malevolent way of "we know best socialism".

If you didn't see it yourself, I suggest you watch on iplayer, when it becomes available.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Clive Hart's Thanet Labour council launch fleet of spy vehicles

I sometimes suspect, that the Labour party have not evolved too far from those gray days of the 1970's when they seemed more in tune with the totalitarian regimes of East Europe, than a free open society.

Taking a gander at the new Thanet council website, I was frankly shocked and surprised, not that they have wasted time and money on a new website but a notification on the site that for reasons best known to the council a fleet of fifteen new dust carts, are to be fitted with security cameras covering 360°, which we are informed, will film continuously.

Now the reasons for this extraordinary addition of surveillance cameras to your normal refuse truck are given, as helping resolve disputes, monitoring staff and helping settle insurance claims, all of which are I don't doubt true, but as you might expect no details of how or if information and images gathered from people's homes will be protected.

Since once a week, a waste vehicle, will appear outside almost ever home in Thanet, I don't think it unreasonable to query how images gathered, will be handled, who will have access, will those who have access have had criminal records check since I assume the spy cameras will presumably be able snoop over fences and hedges in to people private spaces.

I think most readers will feel I'm being a bit alarmist, but confidence in Thanet council officers is frankly at an low point given the rather odd dealings and subsequent obstructive flow of information concerning the TransEuropa fiasco, and of course compliant docile politicians (sadly Tory & Lab).

I also take a glib view that many council staff put pettiness and nit picking adherence to trivial regulations above serving the public. Even if these cameras are not misused by snooping or nosy jobsworths, from the council should staff,  doing a tough job probably not the best paid, be looking over their shoulders, throughout the day knowing that the boss or bosses are recording their every move. God knows that some managers at TDC are hardly fit for their own jobs let alone sitting in judgement hard working bin men.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

One photo op Labour won't be taking

Excuse me I've been away on holiday , on the island of Mallorca, a favorite of mine' arriving home at the weekend was a rude shock given the drop in temperature.

Catching up on local media things were pretty much the same as they had been two weeks earlier, three million pounds is even less likely to be repaid following the Transeuropa debacle , and still officers, politicians have yet to resign or even say sorry.

Sunday I thought I would go for a cycle, not wishing to be tough on Margate my journey on the bicycle did seem to be lacking in several ways one of which was the heat and secondly the vista, groups of noisy young men guzzling cans of lager was not as therapeutic as palm trees and brilliant blue seas.

Near the Lido I turned of up toward Northdown Rd, cycling through Dalby Square, and was pleased to see new housing, which in my view now compliments Dalby Square, which if I recall rightly was supported by Thanet conservatives.

A rat infested site containing a derelict hotel has been transformed by building of new homes in the area, and the thought occurred, why hasn't Labour boss and local council leader Clive Hart had his usual photo opportunity and then I recalled how the labour party, had, led by Clive Hart gone all nimby and decided to fight this development even though it as I understand provides affordable housing. ( around the same time they also took an opportunist anti jobs stance against Manston)

I only mention this having read a letter from Clive Hart in the Gazette, claiming that he cares about local residents, as you might expect I found this almost as sincere as his recent endorsement of Will Scobie as a parliamentary candidate, thinking if he was so confident in Will's ability why wasn't he part of Thanet councils front bench taking the place of one of the dinosaurs.

Still let's not be to harsh, Clive Hart commands there same respect as Ed Milliband does at national level, which is er....

PS Well done to Cllr Driver and ECR for continuing to expose the ineptitude of those involved in the TransEuropa fiasco.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

There are probably bigger fish to fry but

I see Labour appear to be claiming ownership of the recent Dreamland developments as if they are the only people involved in the whole long process.

You'll have to excuse my lack of commentary just recently but apart from the disheartening state of local politics which drains the life out of me, some of us have to work for a living.

As we all know local labour here in Thanet are an honest bunch, just like their national counterparts and if I may say their Tory colleagues on Thanet council, anyway again I'd like to apologise for the current malaise, which for me set in when both Lab & Cons closed ranks with TDC officers over Transeuropa. Remarkably not one member of labour or indeed the conservatives appear to have a backbone.