Sunday, 23 September 2012

Sticks and Stones

Another Full Council meeting in which 3 Councillors dictated the tone of debate for the other 53. It was to be expected that TIG would have their moment over animal exports, though with the trade now moving to Ipswich and a reported 15hr travel time you might wonder what there is to celebrate...

The Leader's Report was published on the Thanet Lab site while Clive Hart was still in the Chamber which is a bit spooky, though I must make it clear, as Clive said at the meeting, that this speech wasn't scripted! There was a bit of an argument between Bayford and Hart over this Locality Board mess and who was really to blame for it. If it mattered that much, then try again to sort out an agreement. 

The item I previewed to some depth earlier this week was the recording of Council meetings motion. Driver said his piece as proposer with some irrelevant stuff thrown in to cause trouble. It eventually and reluctantly got a seconder but Driver alienated what support he had by going off on one about how the public should secretly record meetings. Thankfully Labour and the Conservatives voted against this.

On a side note, reference was made to a Statutory Instrument No.2089. It doesn't relate to public recording of meetings though it does affect access to information. A quick read of it indicates limited impact to TDC as a lot of it is already done as routine.

We then moved onto the "Diversity Champion" section where all hell broke loose. Worrow nervously enjoyed his moment shouting "criminal" and "homophobe" at Ken Gregory and "call Ken Gregory" at another Member. All three TIG Members made speeches slamming the Conservatives, including its supporters, as harassing Worrow and having an underlying homophobia. I must admit, the logic is irrefutable...

A number of Councillors focused on what impact Worrow had made via his role as Diversity Champion, without making reference to the controversies, but those moments of clarity went nowhere towards avoiding the downward spiral, nor did we get any answers to those points. For example what contribution has Worrow actually made to the upcoming Equality Strategy aside from being present at the meetings?

I quite liked Iris Johnston's speech speaking many Members thoughts of how sick she was of all this talk of homophobia. I suspect a lot of Councillors across the Chamber and across party lines agree. This debate should have been cut short as soon as it started getting nasty. Yes, it would have meant a very short debate but there was absolutely nothing to be gained from continuing it. All you end up with is bitterness and resentment which rolls over onto future meetings. An opportunity came when a Labour Member wanted to end the debate but Chair Doug Clark rejected that saying that there hadn't been enough debate. The debate had gone on for some time at that point.

84 comments:

Tom Clarke said...

What a sad travesty of sensible governance TDC is turning out to be, thanks largely to the TIG influence.

Their claimed success over animal exports is typical of their blinkered vision. Live animal exports can only be permantly stopped if the EU so rules they should and the real campaigners take their protests to Brussels. What our local rent a mouth mob have achieved is to drive the trade away to Ipswich, where the animals face a crossing for times as long, whilst robbing our local port of the business. Some strange animal lovers or is it just about high profile protesting.

Then we have this never ending homophobia nonsense with playground chants across the chamber. Is this really what the good people of Thanet elected their representatives to do.

The sooner the main party groups ignore the TIG trio and get on with sensible co-operation in local government the better.

Tom Clarke said...

Whoops - amendment - 'for' should read 'four' in front of times.

Simon Moores said...

Good account James. Everyone is sick to death of the three stooges and the shambles that Labour now presides over as Clive Hart clings on to power and his sense if self importance

Ashamed Resident said...

Well done TIG, we all acknowledge live export of animals is an unpleasant business especially for the animals!, however as a result of your action, Ramsgate Port has lost business, the trade continues nut now the animals have a longer sea journey. TIG stop jumping on bandwagons and think through the results of your actions, better still resign

Peter Checksfield said...

Why don't all those Tories complaining about "business going elsewhere" say something to Laura Sandys? After all, she has campainged about this more than anyone.

Anonymous said...

Peter, not sure I understand which Tories you are referring to. Your prejudice petticoat is showing - I suggest you just stick to things you understand, like soft-core pornography and your continuing obsession with Rebecca Smith.

Ren Wood said...

Peter, it is the journey the animals now face rather than the business which is important and at least Laura Sandys took the campaign to Westminster and Brussels. She was trying to get it stopped permanently, not simply driven away from Ramsgate.

Peter Checksfield said...

Haha, I love it how I'm suddenly anti-Tory! Can I say it again: LAURA SANDYS and ROGER GALE are TWO OF THE BEST MPs in THE COUNTRY! Is that clear enough about my "prejudice" anonymous coward?

Peter Checksfield said...

I don't think Ian Driver has the power to take it to Westminster and Brussels Ren, as you know full well. Does that mean those of us with less power than MPs should just give up?

Anonymous said...

Ignore 19:06 Peter. Anti Rebecca, and mentioning your photography when you point out his bias? It can only be a certain so-called "doctor"...

Anonymous said...

Equally, Moores, some people are sick of your constant vindictive campaign against Worrow. Your playground-like jibes, suggestive posts and constant puerile hint-dropping are becoming as much of an embarrassment as you believe he and TIG are. I agree he has not conducted himself well, but nor have you.

Peter Checksfield said...

Both Moores and Worrow are a disgrace (how's that for "bias"?).

Anonymous said...

08:08 another defensive input from Worrow trying to justify , the unjustifiable. The council has been brought into disrepute, Hart has seized an opportunity presented by worrow who will be a member of any party if it gives him "power" 08:16 it is Worro that is an utter disgrace, Moores can only produce the facts which he does very well. Worrow the people of Birchington have had enough of you, time to go.

Ren Wood said...

Peter, anybody can take things to Westminster and Brussels through their MP and MEP. Not knocking you or accusing you of anti-Tory bias for I know you support our local MPs. Just questioning, in terms of animal welfare, what has been achieved by inflicting an even longer sea crossing on these unfortunate animals.

You may be genuine in your concerns, but I seriously suspect the motives of band wagon jumpers like Driver and Worrow.

Anonymous said...

Anon 08:08

Really glad you said some people because I am one of the others. I love all the anti-Worrow jibes and reading them gives me enormous pleasure when I realise how they must wound the pride of this person who is so in love with himself and his self importance.

By the way though, aren't you in danger of being consumed by your hatred for the flying doctor. You positively drip bile when you comment on him.

Anonymous said...

It seems to be the lot of some local commentators to assume, and claim, that every post that doesn't "drip bile" about Worrow comes from him. I suspect those commentators are from the same school as those who have to resort to personal abuse when they - witness Anon of 19.06 yesterday - oppose another's opinion. It seems that for some in Thanet, the only acceptable opinion is one that supports the Tories and condemns everyone else.

For the record, Anon 09.09, I posted the comment which has irked you, and I am not Worrow. I do not know him nor have I ever met him.

And, Anon, I think the Council may just have been brought "into disrepute" a lot more by former Councillors who have jumped into a car and driven while drunk, and have abused animals, and by current Councillors who are awaiting trial on corruption charges (as yet unproven of course) or who have received police cautions about their behaviour.

Worrow may be no saint, and may not be handling the diversity role at all well, but look at the political stable where he originated.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and Anon 10.22, there is no hatred towards Moores in my comment, only hatred of gutter-level blogging, which is what happens over on Thanet Life, and hypocrisy.

I'm happy for you if those "qualities" turn you on so.

Peter Checksfield said...

Ren, a friend of mine recently suggested that Laura is band wagon jumping too. Personally I believe that both hers and Ian's intentions are genuine in this case, though Worrow's probably less so.

Ren Wood said...

You may be right, Peter, but Ian Driver jumps on far too many band wagons to have real convictions about them all, so it becomes difficult to sort out which ones he really cares about. He is becoming something of a rent-a-mouth turning up at any protest about anything with his megaphone,
thus giving the impression it is all about proclaiming him rather than the cause.

He even associates with the Broadstairs Red Hall mob whose sole aim in life seems to be to proclaim some far left agenda through the media of demonstration. Whether that be chaining themselves to self seeded sycamore saplings in Pierremont Park or setting up camp outside the Turner.

Would any serious politician, of whatever persuassion, really want to be associated with that shower of 60's CND leftovers.

Tim Clark said...

In an effort to retain my sanity I have decided not to respond to anonymous comments, most of which do not address the issues raised in the original posting. The majority appear to be intended to whip up some sort of hate campaign, either against the TIGs or  the Conservatives, and none of them offer any practical solutions to the many  problems facing this area. They are frankly a waste of oxygen.

I applaud both our MPs for the efforts they have put in as our Parliamentary representatives. I also applaud Cllr Driver for his obvious concerns over the live exports matter AND for the way that he has worked with Laura Sandys and acknowledged her efforts in this field.

James' account of this Council meeting should fill all with dismay. I actually see little point in most of the Councillors turning up - "This debate should have been cut short as soon as it started getting nasty. Yes, it would have meant a very short debate but there was absolutely nothing to be gained from continuing it. All you end up with is bitterness and resentment which rolls over onto future meetings. An opportunity came when a Labour Member wanted to end the debate but Chair Doug Clark rejected that saying that there hadn't been enough debate. The debate had gone on for some time at that point." just about sums it up. What is the point?

Anonymous said...

Given that all of the comments - bar those from Moores and Checksfield - here are from effectively anonymous contributors, and that includes you "Tim Clark", I am not sure what you ARE responding to...

Ian Driver said...

Ren Wood For the record I have never owned a megaphone in my entire life. I may borrow one from time to time though. As to band wagons I have never hear so much nonsense. I was elected to be a representative of local people. The issues I become invlolved in such as live exports, the NHS, social housing, economic development, discrimination etc are issues of great interest to the people I represent. Megaphone or no megaphone I would not be doing my job if i did not raise these issues. This is something I will do at Kent County Council as well

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't waste your time. "Ren Wood" is a "rent-a-mouth" himself/herself, but for the political right-wing.

Anonymous said...

16:26 and just who are you a representative for is is it OK as long as it's not the right wing. The hypocrisy around these blogs would make one want to throw up.

Why not make some contribution to the debate rather than just trying to discredit the credentials of others.

Anonymous said...

Like you just have?

Anonymous said...

No, I only asked you who you represent and what contribution you can make. I have not dismissed you out of hand as you have Ren Wood.

She made a point, you don't have to agree with it, but try answering, as Ian Driver has done, rather than simply rubbishing. As it stands at this time she has made far more of a contribution to this debate than you.

On the other hand, perhaps you should run for the council, for shouting names at people would probably be right up your street.

Anonymous said...

Anon, thank you for your observations. I have exchanged comments with "Ren Wood" before and feel that my reference to him/her as a right-wing "rent-a-mouth" is as worthy as his/her similar reference to Ian Driver. Are you commenting on his/her name-calling?

My contribution, such as it is, majors on challenging those who, through their blogs, are displaying the same, and often worse, behaviour, than the Independent Councillors they hate so much and condemn so often. It may be a fruitless challenge - their arrogance and hypocrisy seems to remove them from any sense of accountability - but I feel it is worth a go.

Anonymous said...

Not that I would recognise Ren Wood, but I doubt you would find her standing outside a doctor's surgery in Broadstairs with a megaphone or likewise at Ramsgate Harbour and sundry other points from the Turner to Thanet Earth. You would have Ian Driver though.

I was also amused by his response to her when he claims to be representing the people who elected him. Apart from the fact he was elected as a Labour councillor, then crossed the floor, he is representative of a Ramsgate ward. Wonder how many of the people in that ward are registered at a Broadstairs medical practice where he has been bellowing through his megaphone.

Oh, and I am not a Tory, just a middle of the road person who would like to see some standards from our local councillors instead of the joke performance we have at this time.

Chris Wells said...

Anon of 2007 has a serious and sensible point. Cllr Worrow is famed as much these days for his lack of response to those who elected him, as he is for anything else. What Cllrs Driver and Worrow are engaged in is a campaign to be known for a cosntituency across the island, which they hope might indicate a seat which could elect them at any point in the future, given their abandonment of their voters in this electoral round.

That is nothing to do with sexuality; rather it has everythign to do with integrity towards those who elected you. And others are right as well, theyare not the first to turncoat and be welcomed elsewhere, but if they are serious about changing the tone and nature of local politics then they should consider behaving differently from those they condemn, or qoute in support of their rapid changes of loyalty.

Those changes, of course, may now be at an end, with a mutual dependency between the minority Labour administration and their raucous, noisy, troublesome minority allies.

Ignoring them may be a serious option in dealing with their constant barracking and noise, but even that is hard when they enjoy a greater than even defence from the leader, and to a great extent, the chairman of the council.

And yet ts all noise and nonsense because whilst everyone is consumed with this nonsense very little sensible and practical decisions to tackle Thanet's difficulties are being made.

It's all really rather sad, and once again, undermines the reoutation of the council. I say once again, because yes, there have been others who have previously damaged the reputation of the council, on all sides of thepolitical divide. However, thereis a difference between individual misdeeds, of which there are plenty on all sides, and an insitutional corruption of democracy, warped by personal vendetta and a need to score points - on all sides at some point so far this electoral term.

Unless this is recognised and gripped by some senior councillors soon, I believe serious lasting damage to the reputations of us all is inevitable, because no one, on any side, seems now to believe that in the council chamber there is room for real work forthe residents, only politicking and sniping. And yes, I certainly do my fair share of that as well, but am prepared to admit it and want to change it. Not something I am hearing from many others.

Tim Clark said...

Chris. The solution lies in the hands of the majority of hard-working Councillors, whose names never feature in blogs, the letters page of the local rag or any other such media outlet. Until those people, from both sides of the political divide, get together and say that enough is enough, nothing will change.
If there is ever going to be any point to this Council then I see no other way forward.

Anonymous said...

Wells, you might have an ounce of credibility if you had ever criticised those on your own political side for their misdeeds, bad behaviour, inadequate leadership, and indifference towards their electorates. A passing, retrospective, half-baked acknowledgement in your little rant here doesn't cut much ice. I don't condone the behaviour of the Independent Councillors, but nor do I condone the embittered, snide behaviour of those in your own Party.

Only when "hard-working councillors" stick their heads above the parapet, and speak truthfully to the electorate timeously - not some months or years later in memoir fashion - will some of us feel that there is any honour or integrity among (local) politicians. You will say only what suits your cause and Party self-interest. The electorate takes a much lower place.

Chris Wells said...

Thank you anon of 0615 for illustrating the problems of tribalist politics precisely and so clearly. There comes a time when that has to go and the interests of the area you serve must come first. That time is now in my opinion.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to hear that. I hope you demonstrate it, not just in your opportunistic point-scoring over Labour and the Independent Group, but also in what you say and do in relation to your own Party. That will be the test.

Tim Clark said...

0902 is right Chris. This could be a Rubicon moment for our Councillors. If enough of them, from both sides, get together and agree that Council business should not be usurped by special interest groups then we might get somewhere. If enough from both sides recognise that most of us don't see diversity as such an important issue as jobs, overall crime levels and urban decay then maybe we'll progress. (Presumably that last heresy will have the trolls out in force). Finally if senior Councillors can't bury their individual differences then maybe for the good of the Island (and their blood pressure) they should step back and take a "backbench" role until the next election. You are not in the Palace of Westminster, just a nondescript council chamber, so stop the "playing at MPs" game and all get on with the job you've been elected to do.

Anonymous said...

Anon 09:02, are you not being tribalistic in the way you never condemn the behaviour of any on the Labour side. I can assure you many decent Labour councillors and Thanet party members are unhappy with the grovelling by our leader to the TIG minority and the conduct within the council chambers. The failure of the leader and chair to grip these situations is a cause of great concern and does the party no credit.

Both Ramsgate and Broadstairs town council meetings are far more orderly affairs with genuine efforts by their members to work together for the good of their towns. Many decent members of those, who are also district councillors, despair at the comparison and are getting to dread TDC meetings as a result.

Tim Clark said...

Spot on 0927 and evidence that not all Labour members/supporters approve of matters as they stand.
It only needs 29 Councillors to stand up and say that they have had enough.

Anonymous said...

I am sure the Labour Group has skeletons in their cupboard and I am sure there are many who despair of the Group's reliance on the Independent Councillors to remain in power. Unfortunately, no Party can condemn this sort of behaviour in politics as they will all a) accept turncoats without requiring them to stand before their electorates when they turn and b) sell their souls in order to stay in power.

Certainly for those Tories whining that Worrow should resign, yes he should - but you are in no position to demand it because you would adopt exactly the opposite stance if you were the beneficiary of the defection. It has happened in nearby authorities and the local MP, Gale, applauded the defection.

Meanwhile, just as Wells says tribalism should stop, we have his political ally, Moores, spreading more anti-Worrow propaganda over on the gutter-level Thanet Life. He continues to stir the pot insidiously and destructively, keeping the issues well-stoked, no doubt causing the likes of Anon of 24 September (10.22) a lot of "excitement". And where is Wells saying "no, stop, tribalism sucks"? He's back in the woodwork, proving that his fine words amount to the square root of sweet FA.

Chris Wells said...

No I am here, just dont have the time to follow all this stuff minute by minute.

In many ways the Thanet Life description of last weeks unnecessary and bloody minded meeting is rather less lurid than I recall, and I listened a lot and took little part myself in the proceedings. It is interesting to note that it would appear any mention of Cllr Worrow is taken as either 'homophobic' or 'personal attack', both in the council chamber and by some commentators outside. This is one of the ways he avoids the proper scrutiny of his performance in any role.

I was rather more excised by the reference in Cllr Drivers initial speech of the 'murder' of Ian Tomlinson, which caused a number of members on all sides to exchange uneasy comments and glances but went unrebuked by the Chair.

Anon of 1633, a familiar critic of any and everything I do over a number of years, ascribes a power to me to control other members views that I do not have; I can only argue the points and lead as far as I am able, by example. Stopping tribalism does not always mean stopping all criticism of others with whom you disagree - but there and should be agreed boudaries which are constantly being breached on all sides.

I now anticipate a spate of comments from the past either made by or attributable to me to show my lack of good faith. So be it. I havealways played by, and accepted, the standards rules we use, even when they rule against me. The pretence of any real standards in our current situation is blown away by any impartial observor, most of whom are horrified and uncomfortable with the current situation. And please remember, approaches and initial discussions were held to avoid the Labour Group being placed in the situation of being controlled by the TIGS. They chose the path they are on.

Anonymous said...

Councillor, I don't think anyone would argue that the Labour Group is in a situation - for those among the Group who do regard it as "difficult" (I have no information either way) - entirely of its own making. Even a more formal coalition, such as the one forming the national Government just now, has tensions, so the rather more ragged set-up locally is bound to be even more troubled. Clinging on to power by giving too much to the "king-makers", especially when they are turncoats, is always a dodgy route, and rarely meets the electorate's legitimate expectations and wishes.

But the point here is that BOTH parties, Labour and yours, do it, have done it, and will always do it - until someone rises above the squalid and puts the electorate's interests first.

You"ve said that you condemn tribalism, yet you display no evidence of doing anything - accepting your influence is extremely limited and your powers even more so - to combat it. You only comment on it when it is demonstrated by the "other side". Perhaps if a few more politicians started to criticise it when it comes from their own side, we might see progress. Instead we see your playing to the same old partisan rules and expectations.

You know full well that what appears and is pushed on Thanet Life is just the sort of behaviour you are condemning on the part of Worrow, Driver and others - perhaps occasionally more subtle, but the same nonetheless. But you say nothing; in fact you infer support for it.

Of course, it's not in your self-interest to criticise "your own". You would have no future, politically, if you became known as an "unreliable" player. And therein lies the problem. Change, real change, requires courageous leaders who are prepared to put themselves out on a limb. They seem to be almost non-existent, in whatever Party.

I don't believe any of that is objectionable or the sort of comment you prepared readers to expect from me. As you say, we have crossed words many times, but let's not tiptoe down the nostalgia path.

Anonymous said...

18:41 you really do come out with the same old argument all the time about Tories only criticising Labour and the TIG members and never their own side. Please, for the record, when did any Labour councillor ever criticise his own side. Please get real and face the facts of party politics.

As for your constant whining about Thanet Life, I have just read the last two items posted and they certainly don't match your description. A report on the conduct of a meeting and despair at the ineffectiveness of our district council as a result is fair enough surely. Be honest, you just hate Simon Moores with every tissue of your being. Did he reject your advances sometime or what?

Frankly, your repetition of argument is becoming seriously boring and your bigotted bias does nothing for any worthwhile debate.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your observations, Anon of 20.09, which I'll answer despite your squalid, pathetic suggestion in your second paragraph.

My whole point is that politicians of ALL parties have the same behavioural flaws. Their driving force is not primarily the needs and interests of the electorates, but their own interests and future prospects within their party. As others have argued before, MAYBE public authorities would be better populated by individuals with no party allegiance whatsoever, but a stronger, personal and direct bond between themselves and the electorate.

My challenge is simply about the hypocrisy of those who are constantly lambasting the Independent Councillors on TDC and Worrow in particular. Their behaviour is as bad as that which they complain about. But I've explained my arguments, and I don't want to be repetitive. Clearly you're happy with the repetitiveness of their campaign because it suits your own "bigotted bias". I suspect we'll just have to agree to disagree, and speculate on what drives the anti-Worrow campaign.

And I don't hate Moores. I don't know him and have never met him. What I hate is the manipulative, snide blog that is Thanet Life, and the hypocrisy evidenced there almost daily. But again, I suspect we'll have to agree to differ on that.

But I do wish you and your kind locally could learn to to comment without attempting to insult, offend or smear those whom you oppose. Or at least post such comments only on the blog where they match the house style.

Simon Moores said...

Not sure about the 'snide hypocrisy' bit as I report it all as I see it and I believe the video is evidence enough, if not the contents of www.tigabout.blogspot.com which is apparently all lies according to the 'Tiggers'"

There's rather more besides that isn't reported about our independent councillors and I have 42 comments which never saw the light of day. Some of these comments on the island's finest are so lurid and damaging that I doubt even the Sun newspaper at its salacious best would touch them. The Thanet's Gazette certainly won't.

So do tell me where the hypocrisy lies in holding fellow politicians to account for their actions and statements?

Tom Clarke said...

Anon 5:57, you and I have crossed pens before and I see you are still failing to recognise your own bias.

You seemingly take the moral high ground and claim you are calling on ALL politicians yet you only ever attack Conservative ones.

As for the attacks on the so called Independent councillors, I think this now stems more from their perpetual disruption of proper council business in order to highlight their own questionable campaigns. In the process they deny the people of Thanet a council that tackles the real issues of concern locally.

I have often called for a return to the days when upstanding figures in the local community gave of their time freely to serve on local councils. Each time I get shouted down with accusations of excluding those who cannot afford to serve for nothing.


Likewise I have decried the introduction of politics into local government only to have some wit point out that all the old independents were really Tories. Then again, looking at most of the current crop of independents on the TDC, is that the governance one would choose.

I don't profess to know the answer, but I am not naive enough to think things are going to change for the better in Thanet anytime soon regardless of all the comments the likes of you or I make on blogsites.

Anonymous said...

Councillor Moores, I know you have a loyal readership and many like the content and bias of your blog. But some don't.

The key is, as you say, that you report events and things as YOU see them, so the reports are unlikely ever to be objective and entirely factual. They will be subject to your political bias - to which you are obviously entitled - and will serve your personal interests as a local elected Conservative politician.

You have, almost daily, posted items about the Thanet Independent Councillors, and Councillor Worrow in particular. Your posts have invariably been hostile, accusative, and provocative. You - and those who support you - have claimed that you are only responding to things that these Councillors have said and done. That may or may not be true; in my opinion it often isn't. But in any event why have you felt the need, and taken it upon yourself, to undertake this role?

My reference to hypocrisy relates simply to the fact that you have NEVER drawn attention to, commented on, or expressed negative views about, the proven wrong-doing or bad behaviour on the part of Conservative Councillors. Indeed you have refused to acknowledge it. So isn't it hypocritical to try to present yourself now - and the same applies to Councillor Wells - as the local standards watchdog? Of course you would never break ranks, either of you, and knock your own side, any more than a Labour Councillor would, because that would offend the rules of the game, and would damage your personal prospects. It may be in the electorate's interests that politicians should do so, that you should be more honest, but the electorate comes pretty low down on your collective agenda, eh?

Isn't the real truth that you are simply using your blog, as ever, to tarnish the reputation of those with whom you disagree, and to try and pass off your very one-sided view of life as "news"?

Your posts about the Independent Councillors have often been full of innuendo and suggestiveness. You have dropped snippets of gossip that effectively smear the individuals you have targeted but have then declined, coquettishly, to provide the detail that would either back up your smear or allow the target to challenge it, if necessary through the courts. Even here, today, you are referring to "lurid" comments but don't say enough to allow others to challenge the truthfulness and accuracy of what you claim to have in your possession. But of course your "snippets" deliver the damage you are aiming to inflict - without the risk, you hope, of being liable to legal action against you. Some view that as cowardly and low.

Is that a responsible way for an elected representative to behave?

You have, specifically, referred to incidents in the lavatories of local bars, apparently relating to one Independent Councillor, and you have allowed and supported comments that suggest alcohol dependency on the part of another. If you have evidence, wouldn't the responsible approach be to publish the full details so that, again, individuals could challenge what you are saying, or repeating?

Your reference to the "tigabout" blogspot intrigues me. Do you have EVIDENCE that this has been produced by any or all of the Independent Councillors? Do they accept responsibility for it? Not loaded questions, I genuinely wonder.

Anonymous said...

"Tom Clarke", there are only two points worthy of comment in your missive.

One. You recently lambasted me for declaring pride in my left-wing bias. How can you now accuse me of trying to hide it? You make no sense - again.

Two. There is a big difference between what I, and one or two others, have said about truly independent local politicians/councillors and your reference to local "upstanding" individuals. Bearing in mind your past comments on the subject, you clearly favour a return to days when only professional and well-off people were allowed to stand for election and those in what one might call the "working class" were there simply to be governed. Oh dear.

Tom Clarke said...

Seemingly you have no view then, 21:29, on the disruption of council business to debate issues that are clearly outside the remit of TDC and of no importance to the majority of people in Thanet.

Your last paragraph might make more sense if you defined working class. Surely anyone who is employed in a job by somebody else is in fact working class. What about the self employed, tradesmen, shopkeepers and salesmen, many of whom put in long hours to earn a living. Are they not working class. What is to stop any of these people standing for election, particularly when retired as so many of our councillors are.

No you would rather put in words I did not write and assume I am some kind of Tory overlord who looks down on the workers. You seem to forget, I was a soldier for best part of my working life and that does not lead to fame and fortune or a place in the upper echelons of society.

Chris Wells said...

Anon you are right in that your response to me was more measured than expected, though you seem to have found it hard to maintain that tone since.

My central point in the end is that the council has real problems to consider but fills agendas with spin and politicking or cancels cabinet meetings rather than discuss the problems as they should.

Is tha clever politics? Or sucking up to the kingmakers? Or just avoiding issues until the ground is prepared and decisions made in the classic 'smoke filled room' scenario?

The decisions so far don't seem that good either. New director at 90000; cllr allowances up; denying the missing 60000 at the Theatre Royal; economic development booklet filled with meaningless guff; 6 million pound investment in thanet college threatened; volte face on broadstairs ctty centre; complete farce of political manipulation of parking fees; propping up failing budgetary control through new homes bonus one off monies; any or all of these more important than the diversity champion's record, but that is what we get to discuss on council agenda. Good old union style manipulation of the rules is now the norm not democratic openness. Surprised many cllrs are frustrated?

Anonymous said...

Councillor Wells, please don't be patronising. I don't think that's a sensible trait for anyone in your line of business.

I agree with you that good governance doesn't flow from the sort of political alignment and dependency that currently exists in Thanet. But the point here is that you and your Party would undeniably do exactly the same if it suited you - and to hell with the electorate.

Even in your latest contribution, you offer nothing but criticism just of the other side without any smidgin of acknowledgement that the flaws run deep within each of the main Parties - ie including your own. Your colleague persists in smearing certain opponents against a history of steadfast denial or ignorance of there ever being anything dodgy at base camp.This despite the innumerable skeletons rattling in your Party's cupboard.

I am sure other Parties are capable of the same, but I don't think any of their Councillors are out there on the local blogs - the parameters for my observations - saying and doing what you and Councillor Moores

You say you are frustrated by the Independent Councillors, possibly with good cause. But only when you recognise the scope for frustration at your, and Moores's tactics, will anything even begin to change and improve.

Simon Moores said...

Busy day yesterday and the same is true today so I will be brief for the benefit of our regular correspondent.

I absolutely decry inappropriate behaviour on the part of all and any political parties but when a matter is under investigation or the subject of sanctions within my own party, it's awkward if not impossible for me to pass comment on my own weblog for very good reasons. Thus, I leave it to other of which there are several.

You mention www.tigabout.blogspot.com

This is also the subject of another ongoing investigation and I was actually giving evidence on Tuesday. I'm quite satisfied about the origin of the content and who placed it there.

You mention alcoholism and public toilets. You might be alluding to rumours of gross indecency as well.

However, while the one might be common currency among a minority of politicians of a particular generation, it's not a criminal offense unless perhaps one is caught driving. The other may be but would have to be the subject of a material complaint, otherwise its simply an alleged incident which has no place on a weblog and which even the newspapers would not report, however salacious or common the knowledge

Perhaps that helps?

Tom Clarke said...

O7:41, as ever you choose to totally ignore the points raised by either Cllr Wells or I and go straight back into your anti-Tory stance. That attitude is as damaging to our local governance as that of which you accuse Cllrs Moore and Wells.

Until constructive dialogue flows we will simply continue with this tit for tat nonsense for which you are as guilty as any others.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your comments about "tigabout", Councillor. Given the content of the website, it seems strange that it should have been created by any or all of the Independent Councillors, but I have no background knowledge about it whatsoever. Clearly you have. The sooner its origins and "authorisation" are clear and officially evidenced, the better, I guess. Would it not be prudent for you to hold off with your references to it until that stage is reached?

Turning to the numerous posts on your blog about the Independent Councillors and alcohol dependency and incidents in local bars, I am alluding to nothing. I have no knowledge of these matters nor any information to support or challenge what you have posted or allowed others to post. But your reply confuses me. If allegations or inferences about such things "have no place on a weblog", why have they appeared on yours with such regularity? And why have you not provided all of the information allegedly available to you, so that others can either challenge (if appropriate through the courts) or fold?

Anonymous said...

So, Tom-boy, are you a tat or a tit?

Tom Clarke said...

Are, who knows for I am but a disenchanted member of society.

Chris Wells said...

THing is, Anon, righht now the agendas and decisions are made by the current adminstration, thus are the source of frustration right now. Not so?

Anonymous said...

My your footwork is fancy, Councillor, but I'm not sure ritual side-stepping is a popular spectator sport. I know a brick wall when I see one, but the questions about blogging behaviour are reasonable and will I hope attract an answer from your colleague.

Simon Moores said...

I'm afraid our familiar troll is playing a familiar game here which goes back years. He will always insist on the last word and if you reply, then the thread goes on for ever as you will have noticed across all of Thanet's blogs that have to put up with him.

So for now, let's just accept that the members of TIG are misunderstood saints, that Labour is always right and my name is a red rag to a bull.

I am glad to see though that the medication is working and that he's no longer up in the middle of the night tapping away at his private messages!

Anonymous said...

What a shame that instead of answering the very reasonable questions about your blogging behaviour, Councillor Moores, you fall back on your usual and rather childish insults...medication...blogging early in the morning or late at night...

You really ought to buy a new insult book.

It signals that you are in a corner here and have no plausible answer to the questions about why you are publishing what you way about fellow Councillors. Last time you found yourself in such a position - in a corner but with different cause - you closed down your blog amid claims of abuse in the streets towards your family. I wonder what else you have in store this time.

Anonymous said...

Tell you what, Councillor Moores, better idea. I have no ambition whatsoever for the "last word" but I do think elected representatives should answer reasonable questions and account for themselves to the public. I will pursue these particular issues no further if you answer, here, the following fair questions fully:

1) Precisely what evidence do you have that "tigabout" has been published by any or all of the Independent Councillors, and how did you obtain the evidence?

2) Why have you not referred the allegations you claim have been shared with you about the Independent Councillors to the relevant authorities, where appropriate, for them to be investigated, or shared them with the Councillors themselves so that they can deal with them if they wish - if appropriate through the courts?

3) If, as you say, allegations or inferences about such things "have no place on a weblog", why have they appeared on yours with such regularity?

4) Why have you persisted in publishing hints and suggestions, but declined to publish the "evidence" that forms the basis of them, effectively smearing your targets without allowing scope for any redress against you?

And please stop referring to anyone who disagrees with you or challenges you as a "troll".

Anonymous said...

And, 12:38, why are you such a pain in the rear? All your questions have been answered time and again yet still you trundle out the same repetitve stuff. Obviously, your repartee is a bit limited and predictable, hardly making you the ideal person to take on the likes of Clls. Moores and Wells in Labour's cause.

Mind you, Labour does not really have a cause other than to get power, by any means including soul selling, and then to stuff everything up once they have got it. See the new socialist regime in France is making exactly the same mistakes as our last lot did here. Like you they only have a very limited vision and the one failed old plan every time they get elected.

Anonymous said...

So where have my questions been answered, Anon?

Anonymous said...

If you think I am going to be tricked into repeating answers already given to you several times in the past you must think I am as green as you evidently are.

What was Cllr Moores saying about you having to have the last word. Shame it contributes nothing more than yet another question.

Anonymous said...

There is no trick question, here, whatsoever. I'm not asking you to REPEAT any answers. I'm simply asking you to tell me where the answers are to the questions I have set out here. Though given I only asked them in this blog yesterday/today I wonder what the basis is for your outburst.

What is so scary about the questions?

Anonymous said...

Nothing and if anyone is having an outburst you only need to look in the mirror.

You have asked the same questions, sometimes turned around a bit its true, on numerous occasions on various blogsites and if you trawl back through your favourite blogs you will see the answers given.

It is hardly surprising that people get well and truly fed up with the monotony of your contributions. It is like you have a problem with yourself, maybe you did not get to the grade you think you should have, maybe a lifestyle choice is denying you a family life as you age or, maybe, you are just on a mid life crisis.

Take a cruise to the sun, sup some wine and generally relax. It could almost make you human. Kyrenia is nice this time of year.

Anonymous said...

Anon, you seem to be rather confused. But please don’t convert your confusion into insults or flights of fantasy about my life, of which you know absolutely nothing. It’s really sad that you and those like you (including Councillor Moores) who pursue a particular “angle” on these blogs resort to such visceral abuse as soon as you find yourselves in difficult positions. Do try to keep calm and polite.

The first time I have ever asked the specific questions that are apparently causing you so much pain and embarrassment was today, on this blog, with one of them overtured yesterday. I have never before asked any even remotely similar questions here or on any other blog. I am unaware if anyone else has. It’s difficult, therefore, to see how the questions can be called “repetitive”.

So again, tell me, where have they been answered? Indeed, tell me where they have been asked before?

A cynic might suggest that you are lying to try and steer attention away from the questions. Again, a bit sad. Please prove the cynics wrong.

By the way, to correct your earlier allegation, I have nothing to do with either the Labour Party or the Thanet Independent Group, nor do I have any interest in trying to make them look good. Indeed, if what is being said on these blogs is true, the die is cast for them both and the public will shun them for mismanagement as soon as they are able.

Tom Clarke said...

Anon, there are no insults in my previous comment, only suggestions as to why you might come over as rather bitter.

I have not accused you of being a member of Thanet Labour or the Thanet Independent Group, but your left wing bias is very evident.

Where are the lies in my last comment which is more suggestion than statement of fact. An opinion cannot be a lie in itself.

You also seem to suffer from memory loss when you suggest I know nothing about you. Over the years you have included snippets giving a glimpse into both what you do and your attitude. True I know not your name or where you live, but I have a pretty good picture now of the type of person you are.

Anonymous said...

Forgive me, "Tom Clarke", but I didn't realise that you were the anonymous poster. Unlike some bloggers, I don't have a fascination with the identity of anonymous contributors; I just reply if I have something to say.

Your lie, or (to be charitable) confusion, is simple. I have not asked these questions elsewhere, and certainly the information I am seeking has never been provided. Again, prove your case, show me where and I will obviously revisit my conclusions.

And if you were also the Anon of 19.29 yesterday, how curious and duplicitous that you should parrot Moores and accuse me of wanting to have the last word - when previously you have derided me for not answering your points when I have chosen to ignore you. Even you can't have it both ways.

Clearly, my questions have touched a nerve, or perhaps several nerves, and now you are riding to the support of those you admire to try to muddy the waters and deflect attention from the inability or refusal of your heroes to account for themselves and to explain their very, very dodgy behaviour.

All I am asking for is answers to my very reasonable and relevant questions.

Tom Clarke said...

10:17 Firstly I was not Anon of 19:29 yesterday and only claim responsibility for last evening at 20:06 when I picked up on a thread. I only clicked anonymous then, not as any shield to my identity, but because it wanted me to reregister my google account and I could not be bothered at the time.

Now to all this nonsense about nerves, really you should know me better for there is nothing you could say that could make my knees even quiver let alone knock.

As to being an echo of Cllr Moores, I may from time to time agree with him, though not always, but I am as capable as him of reading what you write.

You want evidence or the truth about some of the comments on the TIGs, but, in the immortal words of Colonel Jessop "You can't handle the truth." If it did not fit your biased view you would simply ignore it.

Anonymous said...

As I've said, I don't care one jot about the identity of anonymous contributors. Now why not stop wasting time on all this vitriol and diversion and just tell me where the questions I have posed have been answered, "Tom Clarke"?

Tom Clarke said...

And is that your last word? Vitriol indeed, where exactly, not that you will answer for you never do.

Now I have better things to do on this nice Sunday.

Anonymous said...

I am sure we both have other things to do, "Tom Clarke". But when you have a moment, do, as I have asked you, tell me where the questions I have posed have been answered.

Anonymous said...

I'm not entirely surprised that you have run away from this exchange, "Tom Clarke" to continue your "Conservative defence" - you could start another new group within the Party! - on other threads. It is always difficult for someone to face others when they have lied as you have.

I wonder why you, and more to the point certain elected Conservatives, are so ***t scared about the questions presented to them here. I guess we can only speculate.

Tom Clarke said...

Oh dear, up early to submit some more of your anti-Tory bile. If it makes you happy I am a pathological liar who is terrified at the might of your pen. Mind you, if you believe that you are evidently depriving a village somewhere of it's idiot.

Anonymous said...

"Tom Clarke", you really are a very rude and unpleasant person - at least in your posts on blogs. But again, why not just answer the question that I have put to you - or can't you?

Tom Clarke said...

You asked the questions of Cllr Moores relating primarily to claims on his blogsite and the archive of the former Thanet Independent Group site. How would I know what has been reported to Cllr Moores or who he may have referred such reports to. How would I know if the archived TIG articles are exactly replicated. Having read them when they were first published and then again when recovered, all I can say is they seem to be the same.

What I can say is that I never once got any critical submission to the TIG site published and I was personnally subjected to abusive and foul language by one of the TIGs when delivering leaflets. The latter within a short distance of some unfortunate lady weeding her garden. Whatever else they may be, that one ain't no gentleman.

Anonymous said...

"Tom Clarke", please stop lying, or denying the truth. You said that the questions I set out at 12.38 on Saturday were a repeat of what I had asked before; and that they had already been answered.

I asked you where and when they had been asked before, and where and when they had been answered. So far you have failed absolutely to answer this.

So, again, tell me where and when.

Tom Clarke said...

My God, you seriously are tiresome, 16:45. I said you have asked the same old question of Cllr Moores, albeit, not necessarily in the same words on several occassions and various contributors have thrown in their two penny worth in response. However, the thing is here that it is you that claims to want to know so you trawl back through the past to find them. No way am I doing your work for you.

Oh, and the reason people call you a troll is because you call them liars, rude, unpleasant and a nasty pieces of work. Hardly endears you to folk and there is no way you would ever say things like that, especially to me, to my face. That cowardice makes you a troll. Now do us all a favour and foxtrot oscar!

Anonymous said...

You twist and turn as much as you lie, "Tom Clarke", and you dish out veiled threats, too. I think that passes for a good example of a "nasty piece of work". I clearly won't get an answer from you - as to where I have asked my questions before and where they were answered - because you have no answer. Your lie was just that but also a crude attempt to deflect attention away from the issue here and protect your beloved Conservative Party.

Now, doesn't that make "troll" almost seem like a term of endearment?

Tom Clarke said...

Since I have no idea who you are or where you live, 22:13, I cannot possibly threaten you.

That I find Labour totally unacceptable in government at any level might make me favour the alternative, but you repeat your constant mistake of assuming I protect the Conservative party. I don't and am currently campaigning vigerously through other organisations against Gay Marriage and the latest round of defence cuts. At this time I would not vote for a Cameron led government though I might for one led by David Davies, Boris Johnson or Nigel Farage.

As for this ongoing situation with you, I simply don't like your evident bias or the tone of many of your comments. End of story.

Anonymous said...

A suitable conclusion, because I have a thorough distaste for liars and offensive people. Enjoy your day campaigning.

Tom Clarke said...

Such glee, 08:54, for am I to take it that this is your last comment on the issue or will you, once again, prove Cllr Moores right when he says you always have to make one more 'last word.'

Anonymous said...

Just answer the question put to you, or go back to your audition for "Carry On Lying". A career as Moores's parrot may be short-lived.

Tom Clarke said...

Point proved, comrade!

Anonymous said...

Only in your "ach matron" mind, obersturmbannfuhrer.

Tom Clarke said...

Sorry to disappoint you, comrade, but kapitan was the highest I achieved.