Thursday, June 29, 2006
First, try and get them to go quietly.... then, if that doesn't work...
Following yesterday's post about Kelly & co. pushing for Elected Mayors, here comes Phil Woolas with the carrot. If the Council Leaders don't pick up on that... watch out for the stick right behind it. Perhaps the most sinister part is the bit where Woolas says, "Council leaders were not to blame, he said. Instead, the whole system of local government needed to be changed." What is it about these people that makes me think that will not be about MORE democracy? As usual, these talks on Regionalism are taking place over the heads of Labour Party members. It may be a handful of members, generally speaking the Leaders of Councils, are involved, but for the remaining councillors, they couldn't give a toss what we think. As for the wider membership (which is considerably less wide than it was when Blair promised to recreate a mass membership party)... well, they can just forget it. Instead of being ashamed of this, they look at 'new ways of funding political parties' (by the way, for more on that Labour people, try here) and other gimmicks designed to allow politics to operate in a vacuum from the people. When Blair says: "if we remain New Labour we will remain in office" you have to ask yourself who he means by "we"... because he might just be talking about David Cameron.
Posted by Bob Piper at Thursday, June 29, 2006