2016-08-14 15.31.27

Identity, where the understanding starts…

I suppose I probably should have been more observant during my first five years as a Councillor to the identity that the Council has of itself. My experience in life suggests that it’s very difficult to really understand a person until you understand the identity they have of themselves. So, the identity that any particular council has of itself is generally the consolidated identity of the majority of the Councillors. In fact, the real truth about the results of any Council, both at a local and regional level is the direct out-working of the very personal identity(s) of the majority of the Councillors.

I think without exception, the real difficulty is that where there are really bad results, those stem directly from situations where the identity of each of the leaders of the group is more important to them than the results they produce.  So we had to ask ourselves, what is it about the identity of individuals who produce really bad results that is the real problem? So I think it comes down to a few really important things, all of them are very personal character identity issues…

1-The first is the obsession with the titles and positions: I am the leader of this or the leader of that, or I am chairman of this or chairman of that… This of course breeds the delusion that they need to convince anyone who will listen of how important it is what they are doing…
2-The second is the view of superiority that these people have over the others, they actually believe that they are “better” than all the others… They believe that they got to that leadership position because they really are better, faster, quicker, and more effective than all the others. And if you are to have any dialogue with any of them then, you need to reinforce that otherwise you really have nothing to talk about… The realty is you will walk away eventually with one understanding: “the Emperor has no clothes”…
3-The third is that they will do anything necessary to keep their positions. They have no compulsion about lying, cheating, or doing anything else necessary to stay in their positions. Their positions are like the oxygen they need to breathe…
4-The fourth is that they have perfected the art of diverting any questions about actual results to the activity that they believe will distract you from understanding anything about any actual results in any area. So if ever questions are asked about what they were accomplishing in this area or that area they will immediately tell you about all the activity being engaged in regarding that particular issue. No matter what you do to try to get to the bottom of what is actually happening that you will continuously and relentlessly be diverted to the activity they are engaging in… If you ask too many questions in any area, they will make it their mission to destroy you…
5-The fifth obsession is really two sides of the same coin: leadership will take any possible credit for anything going right, even with the flimsiest association to the truth. And on the other side they will aggressively point blame away from themselves about any difficulty making it someone else’s fault, even when very clearly it is their fault…

So, understanding English local politics is all about understanding the very personal identities of the people that make up that local politics. Essentially, there are really only three levels of government in the United Kingdom: Borough Councils, County Councils, and the central government. However, the real truth is that “all politics is local”.  So if political decisions don’t seem to make sense to you, then step back and look at the identities of the people making those decisions, the truth will soon come out…

Why I voted as I did planning meeting 21.07.16

Development LAND NORTH OF, BELDAM BRIDGE ROAD, WEST END, WOKING, GU24 9LP • Planners Recommendations: grant

• Issues of Contention: The current outline application relates to the erection of up to 85 dwellings on land to the north of Beldam Bridge Road. Residents not happy… Issues: ecology, drainage, access. We have already approved this. This application was regarding the SANG, two speakers and several Councillors approached this matter as if it were a new application, which it wasn’t.

• How I voted: for, matter carried by 8 to 7

• Why: this matter was already decided, this was just a SANGs issue. Several people came to testify against this. Includding a west End Councillor, exercising his right to speak as a Councillor tried to convince the committee that we should vote against this entire development on two separate emotional grounds, but nothing on a planning basis, and reflected no regard for the nature of the application. There was no reason not to do this under the planning regulations.

Development DEVELOPMENT LAND AT FORMER LITTLE HEATH NURSERY, BURR HILL LANE, CHOBHAM, WOKING, GU24 8QD

• Planners Recommendations:GRANT subject to conditions and completion of a legal agreement

• Issues of Contention: drainage, need for affordable housing

• How I voted: for, matter carried 10-5

• Why: drainage problem has been fixed, we definitely need the housing…

Development: PRINCESS ROYAL BARRACKS, BRUNSWICK ROAD, DEEPCUT, CAMBERLEY, GU16 6RN

• Planners Recommendations: design codes

• Issues of Contention: none known, looking for our endorsement

• How I voted: for, unanimous

• Why: no reason not to, there was no compelling reason not to do this

Development: Deepcut, Application for the Approval of Reserved Matters for Infrastructure (Spine Road), Central SANGS, and Village Green

• Planners Recommendations: grant

• Issues of Contention: none

• How I voted: for, unanimous

• Why: no reason not to, there was no compelling reason not to do this

Development: VERNON HOUSE, 16 SOUTHWELL PARK ROAD, CAMBERLEY, GU15 3PY

• Planners Recommendations: grant

• Issues of Contention: parking, safety, pedestrian access

• How I voted: went with the unanimous vote against

• Why: it seemed like the exit to the property was hazardous to the lay person, but County Highways had approved it, apparently a couple of times, would be very surprised if this is not appealed

That special Thing…

Unless you have been living under a rock for the last 4 months, you’ll know all about our special little sojourn into direct democracy this last week. It really has been an amazing thing for me, because in 4 decades of voting in both the US and the UK, it is the first  time I have voted on a single issue that was put to the whole country. I have voted on lots of state-wide propositions in the US, but never anything that was put to a vote of the whole country…

Why is it so special? Well, we live in a world that is really not interested in democracy. Our world is interested in the allusion of what we call representative democracy, but not actual democracy, where everyone gets to participate directly and personally… Our political leadership in the UK is to be congratulated and praised for allowing this to occur. And I do say allowing it, because it probably won’t be allowed to happen again…

I often wonder what would have happened if we put the wars in Vietnam, Irag, Afghanistan to a vote of the people, what would have happened? Arguably most all of the places the US got it wrong were events that would have been avoided with a vote of the actual people… Say what you want about the EU, they are not remotely interested in democracy, that is their real problem with this whole thing…

The result was clearly very controversial, and will continue to be for many years, but what we all have to accept now is that the people have spoken. The problem with letting the people speak, is that they might speak and say something you don’t agree with. We’ve all had a lifetime of disagreeing with those we have elected to represent us, it is a huge industry in-and-of itself, particularly in the US. We know how to do that, but how does one disagree with the “voice of the people”??? The problem with disagreeing with the decision of the people is that by not accepting the this, you diminish the very fundamentals of democracy itself. So now we have a whole group of people who actually want to try and turn the result around:

  1. We already have petition of a million people who want a “do over”, many claiming they really didn’t know what they were doing…
  2. One MP has decided that Parliament should just ignore this vote as just the “intention” of the people, nothing more, and they don’t actually need to pay attention to it
  3. We have the parade of celebrities like Bob Geldof who have decided to renounce their honours from the Queen in protest of the vote not going their way
  4. In summary we have dozens of people who want to find some way of disregarding the voice of the people…

So, to all of you who just don’t like the vote of the people, get over it. London, and most of Parliament has to try to get over the fact that the rest of the country did not agree with them. Our ruling elite has learned to treat anyone that disagrees with them with contempt and disdain. Easy to do if it is about an opposition politician, but what about when it is about the whole country??? To argue the validity of the majority of over a million people is to argue the validity of the process, that very process of democracy… So, you don’t like the outcome? Too bad, no one cares, because it is not just the people who have spoken, it is democracy that has spoken…  If that doesn’t suit you, then move to Brussels…