The Plastic Hippo

July 4, 2017

Public servants

Filed under: Law,Politics,Society — theplastichippo @ 2:50 am
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Image via BBC

We in the still just about United Kingdom are fortunate enough to be served by a silent army of selfless public sector workers who tirelessly toil to maintain and improve our precious way of life. Often without witness, recognition or appreciation, their meagre financial reward is offset by the pride in fulfilling public duty for the general good. Avoiding vulgar and shameless self-publicity, we owe these saviours of society a debt of thanks that transcends mere pension schemes, employment rights and tasteless arguments over take-home pay. High court judges, senior police officers, NHS Trust executive managers and local authority cabinet members work unstintingly for a generally unappreciative populous and would never demean their public duty by discussing salaries, allowances and perks.

Consider Nicholas Paget-Brown, the former leader of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea who displayed such selfless leadership in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster by adopting a stance of complete inaction and a policy of victim blaming. (more…)

June 22, 2017

Queen`s speech – second draft

Via elleuk.com


From: Cabinet Office and Prime Minister`s Office, 10 Downing Street
Part of: Government transparency and accountability
Content: Queen`s Speech 2017 first draft for Her Majesty`s input
From: Buckingham Palace
Content: Queen`s Speech 2017 second draft including Her Majesty`s input
Her Majesty`s most gracious speech to both Houses of Parliament.

“My Lords and Members of the House of Commons,”
If you think for a moment that I intent to drag out all of the horses and all of the men down to your tawdry waste of time you are mistaken. Philip has made it perfectly clear that he will not be attending and I will probably drive myself over in one of the Land Rovers on my way to Ascot. I give you fair warning that if that appalling little man Dennis Skinner makes any sarcastic comment then he will find himself mucking out at Sandringham for the rest of the summer. (more…)

May 7, 2017

Stockton-on-Tees syndrome

Patty Hearst

After being forcibly abducted, illegally deprived of liberty, brutalised and threatened with violence and death, it is beyond belief that a hostage would regard a hostage-taker with anything other than complete contempt and utter loathing.

However, since the 1970s, the kidnapping of a wealthy heiress and a six day armed siege at the Kreditbanken in Norrmalmstorg Square in the centre of the Swedish capital allowed psychologists to invent a brand new syndrome to describe how hostages bond with their captors as a strategy for survival and what happens when poor little girls begin to get their kicks by holding up banks with a machine gun. Sadly, like most monthly flavours in questionable psychology, this syndrome rapidly became tasteless when it was used to explain away domestic violence and child abuse in a world where blaming the victims for the crimes committed against them is somehow fashionable as well as being profoundly unfathomable.

It is far too simplistic to dismiss local authority and mayoral elections as meaningless or irrelevant or to point to woefully low turnouts. Crowing about victories in Manchester, Liverpool or the West Midlands when the turnouts are between 26 and 29 per cent is, however, not an indication of the imminent coronation of Theresa May. What is astonishing is that of the 21 per cent who voted in Tees Valley, the majority of people in Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees and Redcar formerly known for its steel works before being abandoned by a Conservative government voted for a Conservative metropolitan mayor. In the east end of Glasgow and across the industrial belt of the Scottish central lowlands, Conservative councillors were elected. (more…)

April 19, 2017

50 days of May

Via Getty Image archive

The Prime Minister, in her Easter sermon to the masses, was correct in her assertion that Holy Week is a moment to reflect and an important time for Christians and others to gather together with families and friends. She went on to say that there is a sense that people are coming together and uniting following a period of intense debate over the right future for our country. She spoke of one great union of people embracing the world by leaving the European Union even as our shared values bring us together. Her childhood in a vicarage taught her the Christian values of compassion, community, citizenship and the obligation we have to one another. (more…)

April 15, 2017

Taking the Mick

For a government that is seemingly obsessed with legislation, Mrs May`s merry band of jesters are failing to bring into law measures that will protect the British public from the very real and present danger of unimaginable horror. We need as a matter of urgency, comprehensive and robust anti-embarrassment legislation.

Forget about the Great Repeal Bill with its statutory instruments and technical amendments which will allow the government to abolish laws that protect universal human rights and laws that at least attempt to reign in wealthy crooks. These laws will disappear without debate or vote as a barely cogent government seeks to take back control of democracy by becoming completely undemocratic. The 14 per cent of European law that is there to ensure equality, employment rights and a sustainable environment are trivial sideshows made up by Remoaners to divert attention away from their profoundly unpatriotic cowardice. This time last year we were all Leicester City fans but now we cringe at the sight of Leicester`s finest throwing beer bottles at the Madrid constabulary in the belief that this act will protect Gibraltar as encouraged by the embarrassingly dire Murdoch tabloid. (more…)

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