Photo © 2010

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Just history repeating...

So here we are. On the brink of one of the closest and definitely most interesting election campaigns I've had the privilege to witness. And privilege it is because despite anything I or anyone else decides to share with you the important thing to remember is that democracy is a privilege. That and the fact that if you don't vote you've got no right to whinge about what comes next! So get yourself down there and let X mark the spot!

This is my sixth voting opportunity in a General Election and looking back at my record has been an eye opener for me.

I can happily tell you what I did because I'm not in a position to either influence or discourage anybody. I'm an ordinary constituent just like you - beholden to no-one and interested only in how the lives of those around me are affected. Our system isn't perfect by any stretch of the imagination but you work with what you've got in front of you and here is where we find ourselves in the global economy of 2010.

Here we go then (with some appropriate annotations):

Age 11 I read Das Kapital - original print, 3 volumes in hardback. What can I say? I was a political geek! In a rather world weary manner which belied my age I came to the conclusion (as did Marx & Engels eventually) that communism could never work when you mixed economics with human nature. This wasn't a particularly pleasant denouement.

Age 18 I was offered a job with a lobbying company by the Dad of a school friend. I went for an 'informal chat' about what was involved and the whole experience terrified me. That much influence wielded by so few people? I declined and went on to earn far too much money doing something that let me sleep at night!

1987 - Jeez I was excited! My first ever vote. Despite all previous political tendencies I went with what meant more to me - I was an individual-ist. And a woman looking for a strong future. CONSERVATIVE.

1992 - By this time I had moved to a wonderful Norfolk village; had married my husband and was thinking that at some point the future may hold something more than just myself to think about. If there had been a Liberal candidate this would have been their chance with me. But there wasn't - it was Labour or Conservative on the ballot. Choice??? Change??? Erm, not really! Basically I cancelled out my husband's vote. I was wrong. CONSERVATIVE.

1997 - Family life under the Tories was a complete nightmare. We had started our own business (for the record I've never claimed a penny in benefit in my life other than 8 weeks statutory maternity pay) and it was quite literally hand to mouth. New Labour came along as a breath of fresh air. This was finally the promise of the society I had dreamed of in the utopian days of puberty. If you can you look after you and yours; if you can't the State is there to hold you. I was a social-ist. I believed in society. And I was a mother looking for a truer future. LABOUR.

2001 - The funniest thing about this election was when we put up a Labour poster in the window of our cottage in the centre of our beautiful village. Within half an hour there was a rap at the door. The Chairman of the Village Hall Committee was standing there asking what we thought we were doing. "If you live here you only vote Conservative!" He declared. Sad little man - ex allotments inspector for Great Yarmouth Borough Council - lived in his council bungalow - stamped on anything interesting with a polished boot. It was only by saying "stop me then!" that I managed to get the whole village planting Spring bulbs all around one Autumn - this became and annual village event. We had a fantastic playing field in that village too. On summer evenings families would congregate there to play impromptu cricket matches and all our kids grew up dodging the dangerous swings and whizzing down the helter-skelter slide. When we left a few years later The Chairman had the Playing Field Committee all to himself. On a visit back to friends we saw a sign on the Playing Field. No Ball Games by order of The Committee. A sad, sad memory. LABOUR.

2005 - My first General Election in Norwich South and my first with a choice of more than the same old three (or two in the last couple of rounds!) Our companies and our family had thrived under Labour and my view about the ethos of New Labour was unchanged. LABOUR.

Various Local Elections: In the last six I've participated in I can remember voting Labour 4 times and Green 2. Last time was Labour. I'd found out too much about the Greens.

So that's me. I have changed and I certainly wouldn't call myself dyed in the wool anything but I do tend towards a benevolence I suppose. It's my duty to society to do what I can so that more is available for those who can't. The difference between this and Cameron's Big Society is that I do it through love and choice NOT because that means the State can save a few bob!

I'm not mad keen on Flash Gordon. He doesn't inspire me in the way that (shhhh...) Blair inspired me and to be completely honest I'd be a far happier red if I woke up on Friday morning to find that the rather delicious David Miliband was poking the big stick.

But there we go. That's my voting record and as for GE2010 you'll not get wild odds on where my X is going.

Still I asked some questions and got fewer answers. Such is life. Merry Voting one and all xxx

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

The Home Straight...

Here we go then - only around 36 hours until the Polling Stations throw open their doors to a grateful public desperate to get this silliness out of the way. And silliness it is, stoked in no small part by the machinations of Mr Murdoch. He tells you what news you want to know...

Just before this electoral debacle kicked off I was listening to a very frank and insightful interview with former Sun editor David Yelland on Five Live Breakfast (here's a slightly later piece from The Guardian). In a moment of complete clarity he declared that Murdoch WILL NOT LET Cameron lose this election. That pretty much did it for me right there and then, in bed, with a cup of tea. How dare a non-UK citizen who pays so little tax in this country it wouldn't keep MPs in moats try to manipulate me! How very dare he!! For any Tories out there much of the reason you're not absolutely racing ahead on the back of all the ammo you've been handed in GE2010 is because of THAT man. Brits don't like being told what to do by anyone, let alone Aussies (or is he an American? In the US you can only own media outlets of you're a citizen - that way they can at least get some cash dollars out of you...)

And we thought Ashcroft was bad...there's loads of 'em...and they all want to use their (untaxed) money to tell us what to do. Why? for political influence obviously. It's not out of the goodness of their hearts. They don't 'do' hearts.


Anyway, local Tory canvasser called at my door on Friday night. Funnily enough when I explained that Antony Little couldn't rely on my vote partly because of the Great TwitBlock Debacle of April 2010 he knew exactly what I was talking about. Thinking back actually I swear it was a Little Younger on my doorstep. That's nice - family values in action. I think we agreed to disagree but as he stood there defending the fact that Flash Gordon had made the bigot comment ("haven't we all said something like that about someone when they can't hear us?" - Tory canvasser's words) he may have taken the discussion differently and just not told me about it.

Still, I bet the Little Tweet that evening told the world how supportive of the Tories EVERYONE was on the canvassing round on Friday night. It's just a guess, you see I don't know. I'm blocked.

So, unsurprisingly still no reply from the BNP.

More surprisingly though there's been no reply from the Green Party which I do find odd. Here's what I wanted to know from them "I have read through your manifesto for the upcoming General Election and would appreciate some clarification on a couple of issues.
Could you tell me what the Green Party plans would involve for Norwich International Airport and also for the proposed dualling of the A11? Both of these vital communication links are of the utmost import to me both professionally and personally and I would very much appreciate some detail on your policies regarding them.
Many thanks for your time..."

Maybe it's the fact that simply putting your plastic bottles in a special bin isn't good enough for the Greens. No, it goes far deeper than that. Far deeper. *Breaks into song* Think of a life without foreign holidays, think of a life without your little car... They've continually opposed any development of Norwich Airport whilst on the council and according to the manifesto want to put air travel out of the reach of anyone but the super-rich (unless it's them and it's paid for by the public purse - see Caroline Lucas - she flies everywhere!) by way of taxes. Also in the manifesto is the end of government spending on roads. Alas, all that is green is not gold and shiny. Some of it is straight out of fairy land - it can stay there as far as I'm concerned. I'm in the real world. And to all the students who are apparently queuing up to vote Green could you please all hang around for the next five years to see how you like no airport and no road travel from Norwich? Lord knows we're cut off enough as it is!

Meanwhile, here in the real world there's something else I get a bit miffed at. This whole 'Broken Britain' thing. My Britain isn't broken, it's great. Telling people it's broken is scaremongering of the highest order. I still, every day, see things to feel proud of about my country - not in a jingoistic, numpty fashion but in reality as part of a country that is an important part of a continent that is an important part of a whole beautiful world.

My country isn't broken and I'm frankly insulted that anyone thinks it is. Give people some meaning in life and watch them grow - tell them they live in a broken land and watch it descend into chaos.

That's how Big Society really works, Dave - with society. Not by Tory councils withdrawing funding from voluntary groups doing Meals On Wheels rounds.

And the Lib Dems haven't let me down. Once again they've managed the very nastiest local campaign - I particularly loved the recent leaflet showing Simon Wright gazing watery-eyed at the beatific image of Cleggy. You may try to look like an angel but I know you're not! Does anyone know what Simon Wright actually DOES? I know he lives in Norwich with his wife and that he want's to be a full-time MP but what does he DO now? The leaflets never explain for some reason.

Geez some of these people make me mad!

Can't be bothered to get wound up by the BNP (ignorants); UKIP (equally although richer ignorants) or the WRP (get a job) when there's too much seriousness to be wound by!

THE END (for today - tomorrow I'm going to tell the world, well you actually, how I've voted since I was 18 so you can judge for yourself whether I'm even worth the read!)

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

At last it's all starting to get interesting...

One quick point to kick off with has to be about Bigotgate. Ok, so it's not Norwich South but it is politics, or maybe it's just personality. Is there a difference nowadays? In the good old days of proper journalism there was a rule - if it's off camera it's off mic. Yes, Flash Gordon was an idiot for having one of those *did I really say that out loud* moments but seriously, if the world is going to lose it's head over this can we play the game properly and mic up all candidates 24 hours a day to see what they REALLY think? Come on. That's fair, surely?

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone and all that... Nah, let's just have a virtual feeding frenzy instead. It's more fun!

One more thing before I get properly started is a massive, huge well done to Paul Lambert, the squad and all the team at Carrow Road for getting the best team in the universe* promoted as Champions from League One at the first time of asking xxx

Right then, to local politicking...

Last week a leaflet came through my door from the LibDem candidate, Simon Wright. It would be really, all the leaflets are from the LibDems or the Greens. It's like they've discovered some magical way in which they can make and print leaflets at zero cost to pockets or the environment.

Anyway, this leaflet said "after being sacked from the Cabinet, Labour's Charles Clarke collected numerous well-paid jobs outside politics while still drawing an MPs salary". I wanted to know what jobs these were and how they affected Mr Clarke's time and ability as a constituency MP. So I asked him.

Amazingly I didn't need to prompt for an answer - it was forthcoming in one working day which made a nice change. He sent me a link to his details in the Register of Members Interests and poignantly indicated that "I am very much a full-time MP and try to serve my constituent as best I can. In fact during the time I was a Government Minister, the work involved (for which I was paid by the Government) took vastly more of my time than the other activities to which Mr Wright refers".

Funnily enough I took a bit of time over the Register details and it seems that the chap on the top of Charles Clarke's page, one Vincent Cable, actually spends an inordinate amount of time on 'other things' and gets nicely paid for it too. But, never mind facts when there's an election to be spun! Own goal LibDems? Or just hoping no-one looks too closely?

Charles Clarke also said that he would continue to look at provision and costings of local bus services (I'm not too chuffed about the fares my 16 year old daughter has to pay) if he's re-elected and attached a copy of his local manifesto - a nice touch. One might almost say 'professional'. No-one else has gone to that trouble!

Obviously one email wasn't enough last week and my second was to the BNP (yes, they are about). Unfortunately I haven't received an answer to my question about their candidate Len Heather. It was "I understand from the BBC website that your candidate for my constituency is Len Heather. Can you tell me if he lives in this constituency or has spent any time here? I'd like to know how in touch he is with local feelings". It's ok though. I suspected that Mr Heather wasn't a resident of this parish as he seems far more interested in Essex (google him if you like) and thanks to The Straight Choice on Twitter I got the answer.

I have a real issue with politicians who don't live in the constituency they represent. It's just wrong. Preferably I'd have a rule that says you can only stand if you've lived within the boundaries since the last election so you have some real local experience and can empathise with those you fight for. Len Heather doesn't live here. He lives in the Basildon and Billericay Constituency. So, not Norwich then. And definitely not Norwich South. How much time has he ever spent here? Does he even know how to get here?

Those are all questions I have no answer to because erm... they won't answer me - not even something so mundane. Ho hum...

Funny thing though, a BNP leaflet touched my doormat today. You've probably seen it - it's the one where Griffin is cut&pasted in front of Churchill. One fought the Nazis and the other... (you can finish that yourselves). Anyway, in this leaflet they say they intend to raise the weekly pension (lucky for Len Heather, 71) by giving pensioners the £18billion that "Lab-Lib-Con give China and India to 'adapt' to non-existent Climate Change". On the other side they ask you to recycle this leaflet. Is that irony or just ignorance?

EDIT: Since writing this installment it seems the BNP have been misleading (again) with their election leaflets: click for article regarding candidate pictures

So: BNP no answers; Labour straight answer and a copy of the local manifesto. Fair to say that my pencil is hovering over Charles Clarke in an X marks the vote kinda way as it all stands.

Meanwhile this made me laugh quite a bit. Fair game etc.

*other teams may seem better but they're actually not. It's quantum - don't even try to question it.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

The days have blurred into one...

Well, well, well! What a week. I've been trying to keep up with local politicking but Thor had other plans and instead most of my daylight and moonlight hours have been spent worrying about my daughter trapped in New York with a school trip. She's still there and as it stands is booked on a flight bringing her home only a week late, on Saturday. Phew! My brother was also stranded in Singapore but he's a big boy and can look after himself. Bless...

So, where to begin? Last week saw the first Leaders' Debate - this one on ITV. Just the kind of evening's viewing I enjoy - no adverts and plenty of opportunity to shout at the screen (and virtually via the delights of Twitter). Actually I didn't shout on Twitter. I thought I was very calm in pointing out to Antony Little (Tory PPC for Norwich South) the discrepancy in his tweets compared to the 'clean campaign' policy he'd signed earlier. He didn't like it though and told me I was "rude". Then he blocked me from following his words of wisdom. Good to see how interested he really is in answering questions in an "upfront and forthright" manner. Yep, or if you don't like them just ignore them eh Mr Little?

Once again I find myself flummoxed at what a thin skin someone running for (any) office can have. If he can't stand up to me on Twitter what chance would he have if elected in fulfilling his quoted ambition of being one of the people there to make changes (see last blog)?

I don't mean to rant about that one particular candidate but he's really got my goat, just not my vote. His pamphlets bang on about his "real life experience" while he castigates other candidates for being "career politicians". Why are you running for office if you don't want to be a full-time politician? And on the other point - who hasn't got "real life experience"? What a stupid phrase. But to take him at his word all I can see is a 31 year old who has run for Parliament before and who has never left the education sector - going from UEA to being a teacher. Don't patronise me with your "real life experience".

Moving on (thank goodness!) to my local LibDemservative candidate, Simon Wright. You may recall that I'd asked him a question about the apparent mismatch between his pledge to save local post offices and his central office's stance of using Onepost to send their missives through my door - thus putting money into the hands of private companies with absolutely zero interest in 'local' in any way, shape or form and depriving Royal Mail of much needed revenue. Well, I got an answer!!!

Ok, so I had to prompt him for it. What is it with candidates not feeling it necessary to answer the questions of constituents?

But here it is: Thanks for your question. I have checked this with my agent.
Local mail distributed from our Norwich Lib Dem office is always distributed through Royal Mail. We have a mailing account with them, and they get significant levels of business from us. The national party office, due to the vast quantities of mail issued particularly at election time, does not have capacity to directly produce and process mailshots and so these mailings are produced by mailing houses. Any mailing house will use whichever delivery company can give it the best deal.
Royal Mail is under considerable pressure at the moment, and without significant reforms it will continue to decline. These reforms are needed to cope with increased competition, and lower overall mail volumes due to increased use of email and electronic communications.
Staff morale has been harmed at Royal Mail as debates over the future of the organisation continue without employees feeling fully involved.
Liberal Democrat proposals are to create a new ownership model for Royal Mail, based on the John Lewis model. A majority shareholding would be held by Government and employees. Royal Mail staff will have a full opportunity to participate in the running of the company as part owners and through a staff council. This will ensure that front line employees are engaged in the modernisation and reforms needed to respond to structural changes in the mail market and create a positive future for the Royal Mail. The remaining minority share will be sold to create funds for investment in the Royal Mail/Post Office. It’s vital that we protect the Universal Service Obligation and ensure Royal Mail remains part of the social and economic glue of our nation.
There are also significant reforms required to put Royal Mail and private competitors on a more level playing field. Currently, RM’s competitors take the most profitable business without paying their fair share of the costs. Liberal Democrats would address this by:
- Introducing a statutory guarantee to protect the Universal Service Obligation and giving the regulator power to place a levy on other operators, who do not undertake the USO, to pay towards its cost. This cost is currently borne solely by the Royal Mail. It should instead be borne by the industry as a whole
- Reviewing the pricing of the access arrangements under which Royal Mail undertake the last mile delivery. The Royal Mail will be permitted to earn a fair economic return on its last mile service. This will require a study of the costs associated with last mile delivery to enable a fair price to be set. Future efficiency gains will be shared between the Royal Mail and the private sector through price revisions so that Royal Mail is incentivised to become more efficient
I hope this helps to explain the Lib Dem position. There is a real threat to Royal Mail at the moment, but Labour have abandoned its plans for the organisation, and press reports indicate that the Tories could privatise Royal Mail.
Thanks for contacting me about this.

Thanks Simon! The best bit of that answer for me was "Currently, RM’s competitors take the most profitable business without paying their fair share of the costs." Yep - they do - and your Party is contributing to them taking the most profitable part of the business. Does anyone else see the irony in this??? I must be losing the plot...

Still, at least he answered. Sort of. Well. In a way. It's ok for them to go against their principles because it's cheaper. As long as we've got that straight. But the idea of Royal Mail being like John Lewis is rather lovely. It's all about the customer y'know!

Well that's it for now - recycling bin is bursting with pamphlets (Greens and LibDems are the worst) and we're only half way there.

Next up will be questions (and hopefully answers) from Labour and Green. I think you can safely say that although I may still be undecided the Tories have managed to rule themselves out on both a national and local level.

One down, more to go...

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Seriously losing track of the days...

Now I don't know about you but I always (naively) thought that if a candidate stands under a party banner he/she should be availed of the support of the party? Surely that should be the case or everyone who runs would be an Independent?

Maybe someone should tell local Tory, Antony Little, about that...

On 4th March I took up a challenge in The Guardian and wrote to Mr Little about Lord Ashcroft. Here's the questions I asked plus one of my own (as a football fan) which was: How do you feel as a Norwich City (and football) supporter about how an important donor to your party has behaved as the major shareholder of Watford FC bearing in mind that his business tactics elsewhere have been described by a High Court Judge in 2003 thus: "Euphemistically this practice, which I understand is not unheard of in the City, is described as "greenmail"....The proper word, to my mind, is blackmail. It is the kind of thing which brings the City into disrepute ... the purpose of the City is to raise finance to enable companies to develop businesses for their own and the country's wellbeing. Where matters are dealt with in speculation and profits are made, which are then gathered offshore, when there is no merit and no exposure to the kind of risks associated with companies, that to my mind is not legitimate." And how does this sit with your view of the Fit & Proper Persons rule?

All fair enough?

Now I didn't expect an immediate answer, but as a voter in the constituency in which Mr Little is the Tory PPC I did expect an answer. He's a busy man - teacher; councillor; family etc. The one thing he isn't is a full time politician which is what he aspires to be. Strange then that he should be so condemning of that trait in his fellow runners in this ward here... "All of my opponents are full time politicians" - sounds like a crime!

I did get an answer, a 'holding' answer is the right term, on 10th March. It told me that he was asking for answers from colleagues and CCHQ and informing me that Norwich South didn't get any Ashcroft cash.

I said that was fine, I completely understood that he was a busy guy and that I'd wait for him to get back to me with (his words) "something substantial".

I waited.

For a while.

Then I got fed up of waiting on 6th April and sent a polite prompt. I think Mr Little may have forgotten me and my questions he had to ask CCHQ for answers on.

Within seconds I got a reply: "I am very disappointed to say that I have personally been unable to obtain this information for you despite asking on a number of occassions. As you may have seen from Eastern Evening News I am very serious about cleaning up politics and funding and believe upfront and forthright answers to clear questions are always best. I can therefore only apologise for this.
I can give you my personal and party views on a wide range of subjects from education to the EU but on these very specific questiosn I am afraid I did not get a response.
I hope, though, that you understand that both my integrity and that of the Norwich South Conservatives is of the highest order and that the party does have people in it determined to make the changes needed.
With regards

What??? Not even an answer about the Fit & Proper Persons Test??? Outrageous!

So what does all this say? Antony Little may well have integrity and believe in upfront and forthright answers but the big cheeses he'll be a pawn to in CCHQ certainly don't appear to be backing him up.

I actually feel quite bad for him (which is strange for me!)

This is a sad endictment of party politics. When Central Office won't play the game fairly with all candidates who knows what's going on? How will Mr Little, if elected, know whether he's entitled to answers or not?

There's a bigger and more unfortunate story here than I can get 'out there' but if anyone else fancies having a look into it be my guest!

Meanwhile I still haven't heard back from Simon Wright (LibDem) about his party's use of Onepost. Maybe I never will.

Monday, 12 April 2010

The days are all blurring into one...or seven...

I must say much of the General Election is passing me by. Not through lack of interest but simply through lack of time.

I've put in about 72 hours hard slog since Wednesday afternoon with a nice break to see us knock one past Franchise FC despite their hack it and thwack it routine. Long hours is just one of those things. I can't blame anyone (not even Gordon Brown) but my companies for the hard graft - when you're growing faster than ever despite this recession the media keep telling me we're in you just get on with it. That's what my Dad probably would have called "work ethic" while he had another cuppa before going out in his black cab...

Still, no knocks on the door from the various local representatives and a fortunate lack of publicity material. Lucky that because the wheelie bin was full to overflowing with all the pre-announcement guff.

All I can think is that no-one is that bothered about my vote and that the prize of Norwich South is being regarded as a foregone conclusion by the big three, or is that four?

In a rare spare minute I found time to have a blast at the 'Election for Dummies' iPhone app. According to that phenomenally scientific tool (or maybe just a tool) I'm going to cast my vote in this order - LibDem; Tory; Labour. that's sorted then?!?!!

Tomorrow I hope to find time to bring you an email conversation I had with the Tory candidate which (to me at least) shows exactly how out in the cold he's been left by central office. That and the fact that an actual opinion is about as rare as a policy with some people.

So, sorry, no news, no leaflets, no arm-twisters, no worries.

I should be happy ;~)

Amusing to see Mr Clegg wanting people to opt for a hung parliament on telly though. I don't remember that box on the polling slip?

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Day three (nearly didn't make it...)

After a 20 hour working day yesterday and so far a 10 hour stint today it's a wonder I'm still here at all!

Still, day 3 brings my first official election leaflet - from Charles Clarke asking if I want a chat with him. Maybe when I get a minute!

All previous leaflets are accumulated in a small heap ready for recycling - I figure if they arrived before the actual BIG announcement they don't really count. I do find it strange though that the two parties who embody 'green-ness' and 'ecological awareness' are the ones who have filled the green/blue bin. NB even if it's printed on recycled paper with vegetable ink it still takes energy to produce Greens & LibDems!

So with little time to devote to politics today and a very, very tired head I've pretty much lost this 24 hours. Shame really because I haven't sent my email to the local Tory candidate (more on emails and Antony Little nearer Polling Day) asking him to enquire of his leader whether he's planning on taking that Socialist no-brainer 'Paternity Leave' in September. Well he did for the last little Cam so why should this one be any different. I'm sure it'd be useful for Sam having Cuddly Dave around the house?

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Day Two (feeling tired...)

Day Two begins not with a rosetted doorstepper, no polling call from ICM, no campaign leaflet (which makes a nice change) but with my neighbours trying to work out which wheelie bin needs to go out this week.

Now I don't really have an issue with wheelie bins other than the fact that they're hideously ugly and it's tough to hide them in a small Golden Triangle garden. Ours are never full and if you don't throw food away and offer a quick rinse to fishy packaging they don't smell but anyone who's been to Europe will have seen what the Spanish, French and Italians (and others?) manage to offer in the ways and means of waste disposal. There's generally a big bin for rubbish and recycling at the end of the road for everyone to use that gets emptied almost daily. Suppose that's too much to ask? And proper plastics recycling, and Tetrapacks - others manage, why can't we?

But back to the election - one thing that grates is when what we're promised locally doesn't translate nationally. Our LibDem chappy, Simon Wright, sent me an email yesterday. It laid out all his good works campaigning for the local community and tells me what he will do, and that he'll have more influence, if he's elected.

Now that's all well and good. I'm not keen on all this parochial 'local' gumph in a General Election - that's what councils are for, but it's great to know how much he values our green spaces, our right to safety and our local post offices. So why (and I have asked him this - no reply yet) when he campaigns to keep local post offices is his central office sending out literature using Onepost? Do any of these new boys in the field of postal delivery have any care whatsoever for small, local services? Or are they just in it for the bucks? Maybe it's not a problem for us in the big city but the loss of Royal Mail service would be a nightmare for, say, my Mum, living in the middle of Norfolk Nowhere...

On a sort of associated point how do these people get, and feel free to use, my email address? I've asked that too of the LibDems but had no answer. Funny really because "they value my support" enough to send me these e-blasts. I'd still like to know.

It's little things, little things that make you wonder because in a General Election the person I vote in isn't the person who will be running the country, or even running my locality (that'll be the council again). He's just a cog, an aye or a nay, a number, to make up the bigger numbers in a House of Commons moving ever away from the commoner.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Day One (of many...)

Well hello!

So here we go with possibly the closest contested General Election many of us can recall and according to the protagonists, in Norwich South, it's all between Good Ol' Labour; them Green upstarts; LibDemservative and (doff yer cap) The Tories.

Yep - we've got a real swinger here and looking at recent council elections this one really is a four horse(men of the apocalypse) race.

My brief, if you choose to follow it, is to keep up to date with what bones we're being thrown on a local level and how them thar bones match up with what the central offices want us to see. My brief is transparent. I haven't decided one way or t'other... yet...

Norwich South constituency, it's all up to us.