Sunday, 4 March 2012
Dark Forces protect the Citadel
Firstly, thanks must be given to my comrade in arms Joao for producing this splendid cartoon to illustrate last week's blog reposted on his website (www.thesourcemag.net). The juxtaposition of solar panels and medieval castle manned by feudal knights adds a degree of authenticity that is appropriate and depressing in equal measure.
Turning to recent events, where an earlier blog on the likelihood of a Crossrail station at Kensal Gasworks has been challenged, and incredibly a 20-minute debate during a Full Council meeting will be devoted to 'deploring' comments made here, it seems timely to revisit the function and purpose of a local Councillor. Councillors are elected to represent and lobby for their communities and to scrutinise the actions of the Council. A majority party member has the power to direct and mould the Council's trajectory, while an opposition member has less power to do so. This is largely because decisions about where money is spent are made behind closed doors and released when it suits the Council, so the opposition are always playing catch-up.
Enough of machismo and military metaphor; this should have no place in local government.
It is quite genuinely a sadness that totally disingenuous arguments are made, and friction invented, distraction techniques employed, misdirection used and binary splits created where none exist, to side-line very serious issues where Councillors of all persuasions should be working together.
To be specific - at the end of January this year, the GLA declared Golborne to be the poorest ward in London, jointly with Northumberland Park in Haringey. This is shameful and a low point in the history of Kensington and Chelsea Council, said to be the richest Council in Europe. If we as individuals or in our elected role wish to challenge this and improve the life chances, health, education and potential of our residents, we have every right to challenge Council spending on projects in Golborne that are allegedly eating up financial and staff resources, while, according to the information publicly available, they appear to be going nowhere.
And we will continue to challenge this until we have answers.