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Independent Community & Health Concern Caring for the Community in Wyre Forest

An alternative viewpoint

Comments about what’s going on in political life …  … Please note that views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of Health Concern or of it’s Councillors or members - but enjoy them - or ignore them (!) It’s your choice.


Wyre Forest and West Midlands

Just when we thought that Parliament was all about Brexit we learn, to the contrary, that there’s another election in the offing ! That, gentle reader, of the powerful and prestigious leadership role of “Chairman of the Treasury Select Committee”. And, guess who’s “in the running” for this plum appointment ? Why, none other than our own, our very own, Mark Garnier (remember him ?) Head-to-head is he, alongside Hariett Baldwin (another good local name there .. place your bets !) and Kevin Hollinrake (?) and Mel Stride (an appropriate name for a runner). And when was the race?  Why, LAST WEDNESDAY !! He has a clearer field than might have been, with so many ‘runners’ having ‘scratched’ themselves by trading their ‘silks’ for those of other trainers - Greening, Gauke & Hammond amongst them. Still, they can hardly have expected to run for one owner while eating their hay in another stable ? Stride could even suffer the indignity of a Stewards’ Enquiry as he might be considered a ’ringer’ since he was working as a Treasury Minister as recently as May (that’s the month of May, as well as the Prime Minister). So we all get to stand at the rail and watch them thunder past .. all the while shouting - in those familiar words of George Bernard Shaw - “Move your b***** Ass !” ____________________ And .. guess what .. the slowest nag won in what was described as a ‘lack-lustre’ race. Yes, the ‘dark horse’ on the ‘outside’ drew ahead of the other contenders, tortoise-like, and ‘pipped’ them at the post. Typical. And of whom do I pen these remarks ? Why, none other than .. Mel Stride .. (who he ?) .. member for Central Devon (well, yeah) and, most recently, Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons (May-July 2019). So is he the one responsible for that shower then ? ____________________ Work on the Churchfields Urban Highway Improvement Scheme started the other Monday. Sounds just what we want .. however, in order to get it, we’ll have ‘left-turn only’ junctions, temporary traffic lights (although they’ll feel that you’ve been waiting there forever), pavements diverted, utility companies digging holes everywhere .. etc, etc. Ken (that’s ‘man-of-the-people’ Ken .. also known as Cllr. Ken Pollock, WCC’s “Cabinet Member for Economy and Infrastructure” - gosh, they do like their titles at County Hall) assures us that everything will be advertised in advance .. though it doesn’t make it any the less inconvenient just because we know it’s going to happen. Rather like going to the Dentist, knowing he’s going to pull your tooth out. And then, we’ll all benefit from Ken’s new ‘Super-Higthway’ .. until the new homes are built in that area and all those extra cars hit the streets.


And, of course, it’s happened. Well, it had to, didn’t it ? After the Lib-Dems started the slide into intemperate language and their attempt to “shock” people into considering their political standpoint with “B * * * * * Brexit !” .. oh, how truly shocking, someone pass me the smelling salts .. we all knew that it wouldn’t take very long before someone tried to go one “better” and be even more foul-mouthed Well, .. Yes. She has. Up pops the Honourable Member for Hackney North, in a shadow cabinet meeting, and (allegedly) tells her fellow Honourable Members and close personal colleagues that they ”.. can go f * * * themselves” - as has been published by a national daily. But then, did we expect any better from that particular shadow Home Secretary ? __________________ “Look … !! “ as Chuka Umunna says at every possible opportunity, we now have over 50 MPs who were not voted for ! That is to say, if you look closely enough, 50 or so MPs have deserted their affiliations for the party (and manifesto) for which they stood for Parliament and either crossed the floor or had the whip withdrawn. And yet, now representing the ideals of a party that couldn’t find enough support to get their candidate elected, they still remain as the Honourable (!) Member for that constituency. So that’s 72,000 voters in 50 odd constituencies = 3,600,000 ‘disenfranchised’ voters ! Once upon a time, things were so bad that constituencies were called “rotten boroughs” .. now it’s the MPs that have brought things into disrepute. Isn’t it time for a “root-and- branch” overhaul of Parliament.


Throughout the rest of the world

Here’s an interesting view (of us) from across ‘the pond’ from veteran radio personality Garrison Keiller. “The beauty of Brexit for an American is that it gives us a glance at the debate in the House of Commons; an actual spirited debate, something unknown in our Congress, Conservative and Labor facing each other, two sword lengths apart, speaking in bursts of argument and rebuttal, no lengthy droning allowed, members free to jeer and laugh, the Honorable Speaker of the House John Bercow crying out, “Order!” which to an American sounds like he is referring to ordure or ordering hors d’oeuvres. Nancy Pelosi never shouts “Order” in our House because hardly anyone is present. They’re all in their offices, on the phone, raising money. As for the Senate, it is a hospice. And this is why journalists focus on White House twittering. If the Chief Twit tweets, “Boogers on you, dum-dum. Talk to the hand,” it will be front-page for at least half an hour, and we’ll learn that no president in history ever used the “boogers on you” insult. How interesting. This is the current state of our democracy.” ________________________ So ‘VDL’ announces her ‘team’. That’s Ursula von der Leyen, as she’s known to her (very few) friends. “Ursula who ?” I hear you ask.  Why, the President Elect of the EU, of course. Silly you. Our Fuhrer in charge for the next few years .. should we fail to escape. And her ‘team’ ?  Why nothing but the best. #1 “.. a dedicated and convinced European !” #2. “.. a true believer in Europe !” #3 “.. first and foremost, a European !” Never mind the fact that they all have been the subject (or still are, including VDL herself) of investigations for fraudulent or underhand activities. That’s Europe for you .. .. !