Politicians? You are kidding says Barrie Hudson
3:08pm Tuesday 1st October 2013 in News
SWINDON Trading Standards have come up with an excellent scheme called Buy With Confidence to tackle dodgy doorstep traders.
The idea is that householders in areas troubled by rogue operators are visited and given simple tips that could save them a whole lot of cash and grief.
The advice includes never, ever doing business with somebody who turns up on our doorstep, getting at least three quotes for work and using the approved traders on the council’s special Buy With Confidence list.
I’m going to write to Trading Standards and suggest a new scheme called Vote With Confidence. I had the idea after reading the Adver’s story about the full council meeting the other day. You remember the one – it descended into utter chaos and had to be adjourned after a slanging match broke out over a Tweet.
Perhaps Trading Standards could issue a Vote With Confidence leaflet in the same format as the Buy With Confidence one. The contents might include a list of questions for voters to ask themselves, come election time.
These questions would apply to anybody from any party who turned up on the doorstep with a sheaf of promises, a fish-belly handshake and a well-rehearsed friendly expression that made them look like a cross between Bambi and a serial killer.
Here are some I’ve come up with so far - perhaps you might want to add a few of your own: l At taxpayer-funded meetings, it is appropriate to (a) concentrate solely on the business at hand or (b) devote time to scoring points against rivals via social media.
lIf you are a angered by a rival’s social media message during a taxpayer-funded meeting, you should (a) make a dignified protest, (b) carry on like a teenager whose parents have threatened to sell their One Direction tickets on eBay or (c) probably spend less time reading social media on taxpayer-funded time in the first place.
lAny democratically-elected body in this country owes its very existence to countless ordinary men and women who laid down their lives on land, on sea and in the air. Many were in their teens or scarcely out of them.
Bearing this in mind, members of elected bodies should behave (a) with a dignity appropriate to the heartbreaking blood price of the honour bestowed on them or (b) with all the dignity of a bunch of kids at a third birthday party arguing over who’s got the most chocolate sprinkles on their ice cream.
lAt a council meeting discussing a problem such as holes in the road, the need to attract investment or the sorry state of certain local amenities, members of all parties should strive to (a) work together for the common good of the electorate while acknowledging party political differences or (b) score points, fling blame, air grievances dating back almost to the era of the horse and cart and generally achieve precisely nothing.