False alarm ... the Smiths are still there, and we are still here.
On Friday night the Smiths and their friends made such a racket even Mr Angry was considering sleeping downstairs. I really don't know how much longer we can put up with this uncertainty. Are they going or not?
We have heard absolutely nothing from Barnet Council, and this makes me suspect that the attempt to remove the Smiths to alternative accommodation is not going as planned.
Due to technical problems with the sequencing of blogs, I had to delete one so, hey ho, let's repeat the content here:
In this week's Hendon and Finchley Times, Mike Freer, Tory candidate for Finchley and Golders Green consituency and former leader of Barnet Council, is quoted thus:
'We need to ensure the voices of the great ignored are heard again. Those who work hard, pay their taxes and obey the law need to have a Government that supports them.'
Not going to argue with that, Mike. And we are hard working, pay our taxes and obey the law.
So why is it, when you were in charge of Barnet Council, you ignored us when we asked you to sort out the mess your council has landed us in, directly as a result of your administration's inept housing policy, your officers' totally inadequate response to what Barnet had now recognised as a long running and serious case of antisocial behaviour, and what your deputy chief executive has now admitted was your council's cock up of the complaint we were forced to make? Where was the support for us?
They are an odd lot, the Tories in Barnet. Completely out of synch with the sort of image David Cameron would like us to believe is the new face of the party: caring, sharing, the party of 'Compassionate Conservatism'. The Tories in Barnet are a bunch of mavericks, self obsessed individuals pursuing their own agenda rather than uniting in a coherent political force, and peculiarly retrospective in their brand of idealogy, harking back fondly to the good old days of Margaret Thatcher, and the hardline stance she took on spending and on social issues: no such thing as society, remember?
In Barnet for some time now, the mavericks have been in control; the lunatics have been running the asylum, and no one has dared to challenge their authority. Mrs Angry, in her capacity as an amateur psychiatrist, would have to conclude that a study of the policies lately pursued by this administration strongly suggests that there seems to be some sort of collective psychological disorder, one might say displaying an almost sociopathic personality. What is the definition of a sociopath? An individual with ho ho, an antisocial personality disorder, someone unconcerned with the adverse consequences of one's activities, someone with no heart, no conscience, no remorse, only an extreme self regard, a narcissim which sets them apart from the rest of society. I don't think that it is any coincidence that the ordeal we have been through this past year and more has been facilitated by the actions and inactions of this clapped out administration: in fact I think the peculiar tolerance shown to antisocial behaviour is in some weird way a psychological projection of a bunch of individuals who share the same qualities as the perpetrators of ASB, albeit in a more socialized form. The philosophy is the same, whether you call it yob mentality or bang on about the freedom of the individual, it's all about caring about yourself more than anyone else and to hell with the consequences.
The behaviour of certain individual councillors within this administration, their egotism, self indulgence, and disregard for the well being and opinion of others is pretty apparent. But collectively is where the real damage is done: could it be that this sociopathic disregard for the well being of others is responsible for a lack of interest in social issues, in giving support to the less advantaged residents of the borough? The cut price housing policy and the attempts to remove wardens from sheltered accommodation are examples, I would say, of a political stance that has no time for compassion, or empathy, or a sense of duty to the less advantaged members of our society.
Politics, as we know only too well, is now less of a vocation and more of a career choice for a type of particularly hardnosed opportunist. And a spell as a local councillor provides a suitable start for many with larger political ambitions. This means that these administrations, as in Barnet, end up with a collection of politically ambitious but inexperienced members, often with no real interest in, or committment to, the local community, buffeted to a degree by a core of old timers, the councillors who have been entrenched in their party positions since the dawn of time, in some cases clinging on to their positions when, naming no names, they are clearly unable or unwilling to fulfill their duties. Additionally we have the phenomenon of the absentee landlord councillor, who effs off to another country whilst retaining his droit de seigneur (metaphorically speaking) over the people in his ward. In one example in the past year, Mike Freer had not even noticed that one of his councillors was living in Australia. Imagine that! Bit like when he didn't noticed £27 million pounds of our money had gone to live in Iceland, on a one way ticket.
Here's a question: which councillors would you like to send on a one way ticket to somewhere far far away? Post your answers in the ballot box, available for your convenience at all polling stations on the 6th May.