Last night the Reverend Rees delivered his final State of the City speech from the University of Bristol’s shithouse Wills Building. Here’s a response:
Marvin, your State of the City speech seems to be a list of things that haven’t been delivered or resolved in your time in office.
Most of the key infrastructure projects that previous Labour council’s failed to invest in remain uninvested in but with a tab left to be picked up by the next administration.
There’s no funded mass transit proposal. It’s stalemated due to a lack of agreement between two bickering Labour Mayors who have prioritised their own personal animosity and egos above the needs of the city and region.
The city continues to have deep divisions along race and class lines despite all the talk about diversity, equity and inclusion and tackling the “issues”. Where are the measurable outcomes showing improvement?
But then you did watch the Colston statue come down and spot a self promotional media opportunity rather than a chance to trigger a real attempt to tackle the city’s long standing divisions.
Congratulations Marvin, you built some homes (the vast majority at market rates with many being bought by private landlords) and yet still managed to miss every housing target you set yourself.
The housing waiting list has increased to 20,000 families. The highest it has ever been, despite officers actively discouraging residents from going on the list “because it’s a waste of time”.
Homelessness remains noticeably present everywhere, except, maybe, in the Bearpit, despite your promise to solve it.
The vast majority of the 14,000 homes with planning permission are not being built and you try to blame a minority opposition party for this failure to deliver.
Still no arena, public or privately funded, anywhere. And tens of millions in public funds sunk into an elitist city centre cultural venue because of a binding legal contract signed on your watch. All while deprived suburbs lose community/cultural facilities.
City Leap has potential but so far isn’t unlocking any private investment and is falling behind its real investment plan, never mind this unsubstantiated £1bn you constantly quote at the press.
Goram Homes also has some potential but your planning delays means it’s falling massively behind schedule.
Bristol Waste is a basketcase with a revolving door board of directors. A direct result of poor corporate oversight. Your political interference in its business planning, meanwhile, has undermined any efforts to reduce costs.
Elsewhere, your council is still complicit in developing SNCIs despite declaring an ‘Ecological Emergency’ and creating plenty of photo-ops of Labour politicians standing in fields saying how important green spaces are.
There’s still no real plan for achieving net zero despite declaring a ‘Climate Emergency’.
Then there’s the poorly implemented CAZ, almost as if it was designed to fail and disrupt.
You are creating only one Liveable Neighbourhood and this is being poorly implemented and poorly consulted on with middle class neighbourhoods getting disproportionate input while poorer neighbourhoods are ignored.
Local CiL projects, especially transport and parks, are not being delivered partly because staff are being taken away to work on “headline grabbing” strategic projects.
The budget gap is currently larger than the Bundred one under Ferguson and there’s still no realistic plan to address it beyond service reduction and selling off council property.
SEND?!?!! Say no more. Your “Deputy” Mayor hasn’t a clue what she is doing just like the chain of useless Labour education leads before her. Our kids and, increasingly, their parents are paying the price of this serial incompetence.
The Dedicated Schools Grant is effectively in special measures and your administration is just crossing it’s fingers and hoping the government doesn’t pull the plug on this ever growing debt.
Basically Marvin, you have left behind a stinking pile of crap and then have the nerve to lecture the councillors who will have to clear up your shit about how the city should be run!!!
Get da fuck!
Our Christmas gift to you …
Will Fatso throw a sickie?
What happened to Bristol Waste managing director Tony “I Am The” Lawless?
Council bosses confirmed as Nazis
Farewell to dull Bristol City Council Chief Exec Mike “Billie Jean” Jackson
Queen’s funeral run by Edward Colston fan
On the streets next week …
All the news that’s unfit to print!
While MPs and the media wring their hands and weep over a stabbed tory, it was not lost on us that during the same week it was reported in The Guardian that “[a] University of York study found that there had been 57,550 deaths due to austerity in the four years following 2010.”
This is slightly less than the British Medical Journal reported in 2017. They linked an extra 120,00 extra deaths to austerity cuts. These are not the only studies and the figures differ slightly but they all show a lot of deaths of the poor and ill.
This MP, who everybody said was a good bloke and cared deeply for his constituents, voted time and time again for cuts to welfare and services. But there’s hardly a word in the mainstream press about any deaths due to this. Not a single crocodile tear was shed in Parliament. No one minute silence for any human being lost to their families early due to decisions in Parliament.
What this one death means, at the hands of a lone nutter, is more security measures and less opportunity to engage directly with your MP. Not that that achieves much anyway.
The eagle-eyed might have noticed that the Tories are also trying to curtail our rights to judicial review. Even David Davies – remember that old twat? – calls it “an assault on the legal system” and “an attempt to avoid accountability”. But why the need to hold our leaders to account?
Well, deaths from austerity might be one reason. Another is that the Tories have just voted not to stop pumping raw sewage into our rivers. Apparently, it’s too expensive for the poor companies in charge of our water supplies who have already paid out billions in dividends to wealthy shareholders.
This vote came after our new-found freedoms thanks to BREXIT and the end of European environmental protections. Now we are free to swim and fish in our own shite. Not that we could have known because the government are refusing to allow access and scrutiny of any legal advice relating to BREXIT.
How has BREXIT gone so far? We have Northern Ireland, labour shortages, empty shelves, increase in prices, businesses going bust and disputes about fishing. We also have the £350m per week for the NHS but the Tories forgot to tell us that we would be paying that with National Insurance increases, which hits the low-waged worse. So that’s alright then.
And who needs scrutiny over the government’s response to COVID, the worse pandemic in living memory? That all started with the lack of PPE in care homes and the overstretched NHS releasing COVID positive patients into care homes.
The contract to oversee test and trace was given to Dildo Harding. The app did not work. They did not employ enough tracers but did spend £22 billion on consultants. Some racking up more than £6k a day, while Dildo Harding didn’t do too bad in her pocket either. I wonder how many of these twats vote Tory? In the meantime we have the highest death rate per head in Europe.
All through the pandemic the Tories handed their mates and donors contracts for millions of public money. Mainly to do stuff that they couldn’t do while ignoring the underfunded NHS who had the skills and resources to complete the tasks the private sector fatcats couldn’t.
Like testing. We have all heard about the 43,000 wrong results given for PCR tests in the South West. But then we are told that this has nothing to do with the sudden surge in cases. Really?
Who suffers? Us. Again. If they bring back a lockdown, it will not affect those in their country piles, fancy townhouses and gated communities. It will be us, in our tower blocks, terraced houses and apartments with a lack of living space. All watched over by state sponsored muggers, better known as the old bill, trotting about giving out fines.
There’ll be no chance of public scrutiny and don’t think public protest will be welcomed. Instead, the Crime and Policing Bill is curtailing your rights to peaceful protest. Not that the old bill ever lets you have a peaceful protest. They wade in as soon as it’s dark.
Like the recent Kill the Bill protests in Bristol. Remember how cops claimed to the press that they were provoked and injured by the violent protesters? Then later they had to admit that there were no significant injuries among the coppers on duty that night? A fact which received considerably less press.
Although the press did manage lots of outrage against anyone caught up in the police attack. Some have received serious prison time, including two women, who were kettled and needed a piss. Nine months each. Needless to say they were not granted Legal Aid and, like most working class people now, they had to defend themselves in court against a criminal charge.
It’s all a right mess and we are the victims. At the beginning of COVID, a leaked after dinner speech by a chinless Tory spoke of “useless eaters” in the care homes. They mean you and your family.
Is it enough yet?