Archive for May, 2012

candidates for public office, often, aren’t even representatives of the population that has been asked to vote for them.

May 30, 2012

In council elections there are three councillor’s to each ward; presumably to give a voice to different communities within the ward.

This does not happen in practice, as the Councillors do not have to reside in the ward and do not have any real say on developments carried out by Council Officers in their wards.

The same is true in Parliamentary seats.

I’d like to propose two changes to the present system that might make the electoral system a little more representative of local wishes.

First, any project that has implications in an MP’s constituency, or a Councillor’s ward, must be approved by that representative.

If opposed then it would become a matter of public debate and a referendum.

Obviously party bosses might find this obstructive but if it is a matter of concern for the larger community e.g. HS 2 rail link, then the debate referendum could be held at that level.

Such an arrangement would avoid the sham of a public inquiry and avoid the accusation of corrupt politicians pandering to Multinationals etc.

Second, in order for the Community aspect to make sense, candidates for office would have to be members of the community. (no more parachuting placemen into seats).

Merely owning a house in the seat/constituency would not be sufficient qualification.

Obviously there is a problem of second homes etc., at least until politics moves  into the 21st Century and installs tele-conferencing.

The qualification could be simply spending 90 nights in any one year period, in that Community.

Obviously it would be more desirable if the residency was authentic, but 90 nights seems, to me, to be a minimum to enable local issues to be relevant to any representative.

One rider to this would be the immediate dismissal from office and a forced election poll, if a candidate was found to have failed this qualification.

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Advertiser’s waste their money, if their advert comes on TV, after an odious one.

May 30, 2012

I’d like to suggest to advertiser’s that they might want to consider paying a premium to have their advert shown first in any advertising slot.

As I am hard of hearing (a growing trend in an aging population), I listen to TV through a wireless headset, which I leave switched on, during the “breaks”, even when I leave the room.

I only switch off the sound, when there is an irritating (singing), painful(whistling) or distracting (cock-a-doodle style voice –overs) sound-track.

I sometime miss the resumption of the program but I certainly miss all the rest of the adverts during the rest of that break.

Further thought for advertisers:

I know that sponsored programs are not allowed but buying up the whole of an advertising break for a “potter’s wheel” style intermission, with a subdued “sponsorship” advert, might gain great kudos for companies trying to project a sophisticated image.

@Daily_Express more showcase programs of pilots could offer better TV options.

May 30, 2012

The “Hickey” column mentions how “Fawlty Towers” came close to being still-born, because of an arbitrary decision by a functionary.

There is so much bad programming nowadays, especially with reality programs and soaps, that it would be a shame if other “Fawlty Towers” programs were being lost in such a manner.

I recall that the BBC used to run a series where they broadcast six pilot drama’s and the based on the letter’s received, they commissioned further episodes of those gaining approval.

It would help break the monotony of the present fare if similar showcases,  for different spheres of entertainment, could be run.

Besides capitalising on the present addiction to phone-ins, the idea could be extended to other fields besides drama and sit-coms.  Ethnic sports such as Kabbadi could be showcased to see if there is an interested audience.

@Daily_Express Protestor’s are a consequence of bad governance

May 30, 2012

I agreed with practically all of the sentiments expressed by your Social Commentator, Susi Boniface, on Britain’s relaxed legal response to drug dealer’s.

I was a little concerned about her reference to an under-funded Police Force being kept from dealing with the problem, by having to deal with “Whistle-blowers and protestor’s”.

First; This implies that it is simply a policing problem rather than a problem of Kenneth Clarke cum Prison accommodation.

Second; it seems to imply that “Whistle-blowers and protestor’s” are a cause of the problem rather than a response to and consequence of the bad governance that has allowed this and similar problems to grow and fester.

It may be that I read too much into her statement but it indicates a need for commentator’s to adhere more firmly to their theme, or, if they digress, to be clearer on their implied sentiments.

U.S. T.V. progs show life where 1% have privatised everything. Pottersville, USA.

May 30, 2012

I’ve just watched an episode of “law and order”.

There were two obscene situations that were used as story threads and which appear to be taken as “normal” in The States. One situation was based on how teacher’s were treated by the authorities responsible for them.

Because the U.S. has a litigious society, Education Authorities, being on a fixed budget, avoid lawsuits by suspending teacher’s as first response to any accusation.

The teachers’ lives are ruined for such misdemeanour’s as raising a hand towards a pupil’s face (no contact), for uttering remarks, which the pupil misinterprets as a personal slight etc.

The situation, in this country, is moving in that direction. It is happening because our politicians are emulating American ideology.

First; schools are to be privatised and therefore isolated from the centralised legal and insurance service, which presently provided under a national Education System. I.e. they can’t afford, under limited budgets, to defend themselves against malicious lawsuits.

Second; Solicitor’s are allowed to advertise and offer “no win, no fee” lawsuits, which are invariably uncontested and therefore lucrative to amoral lawyers. The easy pickings encourage ever more ludicrous claims, with Education authorities offering up teachers as sacrificial lambs.

A similar theme occurs with the privatisation of hospitals but that aspect didn’t crop up in this program.

What did crop up was the case of a Chief of Police, presumably earning a good salary, but unable to get medical insurance to cover a life threatening condition.

Unable to pay for her treatment, she was under a death sentence, until friends, colleagues and, even, her employers stumped up the readies.

Most would consider a Chief of Police to be a useful (though that should not be a prime criterion) and normative member of Society.

She was, nevertheless,  condemned to death by an uncaring political system, which does not believe in a National Health Service.

A situation, accepted by Americans as natural in a country where rich politicians promote the “pioneering spirit” that made the country strong.

A country where Darwinism is condemned by Religious Zealots, but, in a perverted form, is the basis of their political creed. I.e. survival of the fittest (rich) and the weak(poor) go to the wall.

At present we have a National Health Service, because a generation,  who had born the brunt of two World Wars, decided that it wasn’t moral for the 1% to abuse them this way.

They voted into power men of principle (the Old Labour party), who set up a National Health Service and a State Pension Service to ensure that the 99% were treated decently by The State.

They rejected the politics of the 1%, represented by Winston Churchill, who would have rebuilt the slums (which Hitler had destroyed) and an old age of destitution, redeemed by an early death from sickness and injury.

@empireofthekop My version of The Liverpool Way

May 29, 2012

For me The Liverpool way was the Shankly way and that involved the following.

The ball rarely went backward any distance and never in a panic. In a panic, kick it at their goalie, not ours.

The team had a spine of an excellent Centre forward, Centre Half, Centre back and Goalie.

Backs were chosen for stolidity rather than scoring potential, even so, they sometimes went forward, when the opportunity was there.

Forwards were wingers, who weren’t afraid of taking the ball into the area, given space.

The midfield did overlaps with the forwards and the backs.

We almost always had a Xabi, Murphy or Molby, who could put a long ball on a sixpence, or spot an attack before it developed.

Match halves opened with a 5minute blitz and closed with a 10 minute blitz.

The first half was defensive, allowing Shankly to spot weaknesses and strength’s and possible change’s in play (guided by reports of Scouts).

The second half was an attacking game, with the Kop sensing the change and chanting “attack!attack!attack!”

Player’s kept their places in the team, until they were injured, allowing them to know where balls would get played and to work up tactic’s and set-pieces with their partner’s. The familiarity of player’s with the idiosyncracies, of their team-mates, more than made up for the opposition spotting their weaknesses, bcause players became aware of them and adjusted accordingly.

For me, that ended, when Liverpool Executive’s decided to become European (with a Director of football) and insist that players become expert on all parts of the pitch, as though they had no specific talents that lent themselves to a particular niche ~(jacks of all trades, masters of none).

That may not be what other’s see as the Liverpool way but it’s mine.

The short sharp passing game was something that we only latched onto when Borussia München Gladbach, taught us a lesson, at Anfield, but I accept that that is now part of the Liverpool game., although the aspect I particularly enjoyed was Steve Heighway and David Fairclough style runs, terrorising the back-pedalling defences and petrifying the Goalies.

 

 

Charity giving versus commercial charity giving

May 29, 2012

The bus driver, who threw a 22-year-old student off a late night bus, for being 20p short of her £5 fare, may not be directly responsible for her subsequent rape and brutal beating, but he should feel guilty for not showing a tiny glimmer of compassion in an age of “it’s for Charity”.

Perhaps he was fearful of losing his job, for not exacting the full fare, but how can he fail to feel guilt at not taking the risk and donating 20p himself.

I’m assuming that the other passengers were not invited to be charitable, either.

This was a case were 20p would have been a much more meaningful act of charity than putting a fiver in a collecting tin, or sponsoring someone’s Race for Life.

Syria, the latest in global evil.

May 29, 2012

Not too much comment on what is happening in Syria, except that such atrocities are happening around the World.

They are  carried out by people, who seem unable to share our repugnance of them and watched by World leader’s who only seem to be able to act, when there’s cash to be had.

I note that our leaders only found out about Auschwitz, once war had already been declared.

Olympic hype is more important than traditional walking days.@occupyolympics

May 29, 2012

A “Killjoy” thought on the Olympic hype.

Around here, “Walking Days” (a centuries old tradition) are being banned, because “we” can’t afford the Policing of them.

Such bans began just before the banking crisis, as part of dismantling the Police Force.

Now we are to have “The Olympic Torch” procession holding up traffic, all over The Land.

The expense must be huge but obviously well worth it, when political prestige is at stake.

Local traditions are nowhere as near as important as the political pretence that the Olympics is for the People.

That is, as opposed to the rich and powerful, from all over The Globe, who can afford tickets and who will be taking over The Capital, for The Summer.

At least there has been no mention of Councils demanding we pay a licence fee to hold street parties to celebrate Our Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

#NHS. Lord Howe dumps Dentistry scam responsibility on Local NHS

May 29, 2012

My only comment, on this dentistry scam, is one of scorn for Lord Howe. (see context, below)

He’s a man, who obviously doesn’t give a xxxx for the plebs, who are being scammed.

He obviously doesn’t give a xxxx for the fact that his Ministry does not exercise any control over the Dentistry profession.

He is probably only too happy to see further backdoor privatisation of NHS services and reduced pressure on his Department’s budget.

——The report found that dentists pressure patients to pay privately. For example a root canal on the NHS costs £48, privately it can cost £478.

——-Health Minister Lord Howe said: “Denying patients care on the basis of misinformation is a very serious matter. Any dentist who does, this risks breaching their contract and we would expect the local NHS to take action”

Why dump it on the local NHS? He’s the man in charge.