Saturday, 29 December 2012

"Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together... mass hysteria!"

And as David Blunkett warns, the worst thing of all:
Councils are reaching the point where they will only be able to carry out their most basic statutory duties.



Jim said...

No you've got it wrong - its the 5 a day advisors and the climate change facilitators and the equality co-ordinators that will stay, because they are the statutory requirements.

Stuff like libraries, parks, public toilets, regular refuse collection, street sweeping, road mending, grants to local charities and organisations, thats what will get cut, because there's no law that says the council has to mend the roads or have libraries.

Curmudgeon said...

Jim's got it right - and we can already see that happening.

Anonymous said...

An acquaintance of the family is a "Social Cohesion Co-ordinator" for the local authority. She goes to meetings where she tells the local Chief Constable and Head of council how things ought to be. Never elected, paid a wage out of reach of most people, her job is apparently not on the "at risk" list for the local authority.

Longrider said...

It's difficult - nay impossible - to take that buffoon seriously. However, in times of austerity, cutting one's cloth becomes necessary and the basics are all that we need for local authorities to do. That way we get to keep more of our money and decide for ourselves where it is best spent. And we will make a better job of it, too.

Woman on a Raft said...

Alas, Jim is correct. That is why I had a stupid argument with a stupid girl at the local council who seemed to think I should be grateful for paying her wages and pension contributions to say things such as "Draw the curtains to keep the heat in".

Sadly, I'm not making this up. There is a requirement for local councils to have 'energy advisors'. Or so she claimed.

Tatty said...

Yep, the *woman that organises bike rides for other *women... who own bikes and don't know how, where or when to ride them without being told by another woman... is in still in post at our council.

What would we do without these people. :/

*Shaming all females everywhere

John Pickworth said...

"... they will only be able to carry out their most basic statutory duties."

Street lights working? Check.
Rubbish collected? Check.

Nah, who am I kidding. Long gone are the days when the local council served the needs of the rate/council tax payer. These days councils serve different masters... most of them working within the same building. The people are only tolerated in so much as we're still picking up the bills for their wasteful lefty right-on largesse.

Terrace House said...

We have developed a sub-culture of well-paid and pension-promising (but strangely hugely stressed) workers whose only function is to attend meetings and issue memos and emails. Mostly to each other.

My local council employs a chief executive -- and which struggling northern town can do without one? -- who has a well appointed office, expenses and a wage far in excess of any of the masses of unemployed citizens who drag themselves past his double-glazed windows. He was almost certainly recruited from another small, impoverished town and will in the fullness of town move on to a slightly larger town full of yobs and no-hopers. For a larger wage, of course.

In his current role and his next one, he can do nothing for the unemployed and the unemployable. All he can do is write better memos, give 'statements' about more investment needed and host more plush meetings. Above all he will not any time soon be joining the knuckle-draggers who pay his wage and safeguard his pension.

It would be silly to think otherwise.

ivan said...

I have to say this for the French system of local government - it works for the people.

If we don't like something the local council is doing or going to do then we give the mayor an earfull as soon as we see her. Most council business is conducted on the street or the local shop and only formalised at a council meeting.

Yes, this is a small village - grown from about 300 when I arrived 20 odd years ago to now over 800 because of the improved road to the city - but the same thing goes on in the local market town. The very large cities may have something approaching what we see in the UK.

Anonymous said...

Ghostbusters FTW!

Pavlov's Cat said...

Providing Public conveniences has never been a 'Statutory' duty of local councils , which is why the buggers have been able to sell them off and pocket the cash

Anonymous said...

Given that we have a two and a half week hiatus in bin collections due to the unexpected annual arrival of the "Winterval" Holiday (that's Christmas to those of you that haven't reached enrichment tipping point), I sincerely look forward to them fulfilling even their basic duties, the good for nothing b*^&%rds!

Ian Hills said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the monocular one is partly responsible for this - Brown, the Local Government Act 2000, and the abolition of the ultra vires rule.

Now you can't be surcharged for providing extra-statutory services.

CJ Nerd said...

Look, Julia, it's very easy to poke fun at Five-A-Day consultants, but just think where we'd be without them.

In particular, think of peope who might want to do Five-A-Day, but lack the numeracy or the confidence to do so.

Way way back in history, when government spending was as low as the eeevil Tories are trying to cut it to- oh, about 2006- I wanted to do Five-A-Day.

So, I had a banana milkshake with my cheeseburger and fries, and then followed up with a packet of Opal Fruits.

How was I to know that Opal Fruits weren't a dietary supplement? It didn't say so on the packet.

So, despite doing five-a-day, I found myself still putting on weight.

If only I'd had a five-a-day consultant to help me, my life would have worked out more healthily. So, bring it on, I say- hurrah for the Five-A-Day consultants!

JuliaM said...

"Jim's got it right - and we can already see that happening."


"And we will make a better job of it, too."

Most of us will. Leaving the Left to fret about the 'awful situation' of those who don't...

"There is a requirement for local councils to have 'energy advisors'."

A requirement from, I suspect, the bloody EU!

"We have developed a sub-culture of well-paid and pension-promising (but strangely hugely stressed) workers whose only function is to attend meetings and issue memos and emails. Mostly to each other."

We need a cull. But we'll have to leave the EU first.