Wednesday, February 28, 2007

I'd like to help you son, but you're too young to vote

According to the Cambridge Evening News the spate of councillor inappropriateness continues in the form of Haverhill East Cllr Gordon Cox (pictured).

How does the song go? Gordon is a... oh I forgetOur Gordon has been suspended from the council for telling a youth councillor, of sixteen, that "children should not speak unless spoken to" and that only when youngsters "pay can they have a say".

The Tory councillor, who is a member of the democratic renewal panel, was clearly determined to prove he's a sound and responsible councillor and the outburst was uncharacteristic by storming out of the panel who were investigating whether he had breached the council's code of conduct.

This incident is wholly in keeping with the standard practice of these right wing local councillors towards utter spluttering rage whenever someone raises objections or simply asks awkward questions.

Cameron may be trying to paint the party in a modern and fresh light but the horrible truth is that the vast majority of those who make up the New Conservative Party are the same old reactionary windbags.

The idea that you have no say if you're out of work, foreign or, God forbid, too young to vote is not, I would suggest, an entirely democratic one - but it's as much due to the structures of government that encourage unaccountability, arrogance and "very important person" syndrome as is to do with the ossified fossils that inhabit the murky chambers of local government.

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