Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Sunday Tune

Somewhere between 'Finding Bin Laden' and 'The Bones of the Buddha' on Sky TV last night, I caught a glimpse of 'The Green Berets', starring John Wayne. A Vietnam war epic, filmed in the dense steamy jungles of California and slated for being one of the corniest US propaganda movies ever produced, it's an old favourite, none the less. I think I first saw it at the Carlton Cinema with my father when it was released.

For some bizarre reason, I thought the film's famous marching ballad might be an ideal tune for all those new UKIP councillors at County Hall and so if you've forgotten it, here it is again.

Thanet's only remaining, non-UKIP County Councillor, Will Scobie has announced that he has placed his 'Professional Profile' up on Linked-in this morning.

Being a 'professional network' which I use extensively, this is either a smug demonstration of political hubris, an embarrassing example of immaturity or both. If you consider for a moment that the young Labour 'wannabe' MP has never really had a full-time job that any hard-working person in Thanet might recognise as such and that his path to combined generous allowances approaching £20,000+, has been oiled by his family and Margate Party machine. This, in just two years, has eased him along Labour's gravy train, as someone who demonstrated no intention of joining the bulk of the people he now represents. If he had been a Conservative, just imagine the howls of protest at leveraging daddy's friends and the old boy network so cynically.

The principle surrounding public service as a councillor involves juggling a part-time commitment to the community, rather than offering a subsidised career path for the feckless, work-shy or unemployable; not so uncommon here in Thanet. Here I agree with fellow blogger Tony Flaig at such hypocrisy at the public's expense. Advising anyone much older than a schoolboy on how to live their lives without any life experience beyond sixth form, university and driving the minibus at a local school of English. Most of us I dare say would admit to being completely naive at age twenty-three and I had to go as far away as Saudi Arabia to find a job, as they were equally hard to come by at the time.

I may have found that perfect volunteer for a flying marriage proposal on the One Show, a young soldier, the same age as Cllr Scobie but possibly earning less, going back to Afghanistan. There was some brief discussion about involving James May, if he's available but that seems very unlikely. I did have one chap yesterday come back and ask if the BBC would 'pay him' to propose to his partner but I really don't think that's the spirit, as I'm sure you will agree.

On a different note I've been booked to fly over the coming India vs Pakistan cricket game at Edgbaston with a 'Good Luck' message but I'm checking it first as its bound to be sensitive but not as unusual as the 'Jesus Saves You' message scheduled for Brighton beach very soon.

Sea Road, Westgate on Sea
As everyone else seems to be commenting on the results of last Thursday's parish and district council elections, I thought I would give the topic a rest, other than remark that thanks, I suspect in part, to the antics of  our TIG party, independent candidates don't hold very much appeal to the electorate anymore and everyone else in local politics, is now far more worried by UKIP.

There's a campaign just starting in Westgate, to protect the now derelict buildings in Sea Road, pictured, from that old trick of applying for one kind of development, in sympathy with our conservation area and then revising the application, when granted, to deliver something very different indeed. I'm going to soon be pointing readers at another petition and very soon, a public discussion over whether we should be looking at writing our own neighbourhood plan for the town under the new Government legislation designed to give communities much greater control of local development. Watch this space.


Paul James said...

Simon, Without a doubt you need a neighbourhood plan for Westgate. You cannot rely on TDC to have appropriate and robust planning policies in place to protect your local environment or determine the future of Westgate.

Anonymous said...

Surely the boy wonder's uppance will come. When I was his age (1965) I hadn't even exercised my vote, being on duty in foreign parts (Aden). Is Miliband jnr. shaking in his Crocket and Jones? The Mayor of Margate in 1965 was John Woolman Walsh who was born in 1914 and therefore 51 in 1965.

Readit said...

You are right about the prospects for Independent councillors being destroyed by the antics of the TOGS.
(Thanet Opportunists Group), but the electorate had the choice of 19 real Independents in 2011 and did not take the option.

With Thanet politics it is a case of "be careful what you wish for"

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the giggle Simon. Listing being a kitchen assistant and an au pair on a CV is hilarious.
Perhaps he will be making the tea at KCC?

Anonymous said...

I just hope that this "neighbourhood plan" isn't too selective, and that they'll bring back the Victorian trees at the expense of 21st Century parking and deliveries.

Anonymous said...

What next for the high flying apprentice councillor? The first volume of his memoirs? Perhaps a suitable title might be "A Short Journey".

Anonymous said...

According to his twitter feed he's in his favourite shorts and tie today. Won't be long till he gets into long trousers!

Anonymous said...

I suspect most of the other cllrs will be in nursing homes by then 12:05!

Allan Mallinson said...

What I loved was driving a mini bus for a language school suddenly makes you a transport manager. This is a real kid's CV almost down to the two weeks work experience in year 10.

Thinking about it, I could have put Glider Pilot at 16 complete with licence on my CV thanks to the ATC. Wonder why I never thought of that before.

Anonymous said...

He's just proclaiming his working class roots.

John Holyer said...


Come to think of it I could put down Third Officer at age 14 on the MV New Britannic out of Ramsgate Harbour one wonderful summer. I performed most of the boring jobs but I was also taught how to steer her by compass and more. They also paid me well.