Bristol City Council seems to be avoiding cuts in some areas. Please step forward the Reverend Mayor, Marvin Rees, who’s decided there should be NO CUTS at all in his personal office; his new chief executive’s office or to his senior leadership team. Areas that have all chronically UNDERPERFORMED over the last five years and cost us a lot of money.
Not that the Reverend gives a shit about saving money when it comes to himself, his self-regarding PUBLICLY FUNDED international lifestyle or his personal office team of EGO PAMPERERS on the rates.
Back on November 30 the Reverend SUSPENDED non-essential spending at the council for ordinary staff delivering services. By Tuesday 6 December he was touching down in China, pretending he was on some sort sales mission.
What the fuck was he selling them? CREAKING, underfunded local public services? SUBSIDISED film studio facilities in Hengrove ideal for overblown costume drama? CHEAP tickets for dodgy middle class comedians at the Colston Hall? The USELESS services of the shittest Internal Audit team the world has ever known?
If a pointless ‘trade mission’ to China by a SMALL and FAILING municipal body led by a pompous, preening figurehead isn’t non-essential, what the fuck is?
Chinese premier, XI JINPING, was in the country last month for a high profile state visit and to get brownosed by a British establishment desperate for Chinese cash to fund infrastructure projects like the Hinkley Point nuclear power station in Somerset.
To coincide with the CHINESE COMMUNIST PARTY top dog’s arrival, Amnesty International published a list of high profile prisoners of conscience in China. The vast majority of whom are banged up for the crime of free speech and demanding democracy in China.
Among those on the list is a big hero of the Bristolian, GUO FEIXIONG. The pen name of Yang Maodong, a prominent writer and lawyer from Bristol’s Chinese twin city of Guangzhou.
Feixiong was SEIZED off the city’s streets by Guangzhou police on August 8, 2013, and finally arrested on September 11 2013 on a charge of “gathering a crowd to disrupt order of a public place”. His crime was to help organise a peaceful protest over BLATANT CENSORSHIP by the Chinese Communist Party of a local Guangzhou–based newspaper, the Southern Weekly.
Two years later, Feixiong remains in custody and still awaits trial on these spurious charges. According to his lawyer, his health has deteriorated while in detention and his lower legs are extremely weak. His sister and doctor say his condition could be caused from the HUNGER STRIKE he went on in protest at his treatment or from TORTURE.
His lawyer has applied twice for his release on medical bail, the first time in 2013 and then again in June 2014. The authorities refuse to grant bail, however, claiming that Feixiong poses a “DANGER TO SOCIETY”.
Feixiong was also imprisoned from 2006-2011 when he was SEVERELY TORTURED. This Included being beaten, ‘tiger benched’ and suspended from a ceiling by his arms with his legs bent back while being hit with an ELECTRIC PROD on the face, arms, and genitals.
Other Guangzhou-based citizens on the Amnesty list include TANG JINGLING, a human rights lawyer, who was criminally detained in mid-May 2014 on suspicion of “CREATING A DISTURBANCE,” and WANG QINGYING and YUAN XINTING, who are close associates of Tang in the “Non-violent Citizens’ Disobedience Movement”.
All three have subsequently been formally arrested on a serious charge of “INCITING SUBVERSION OF STATE POWER” although there’s no sign of a trial.
Despite having an active Amnesty International branch in Bristol, which organises a SWANKY GARDEN PARTY at Bristol University’s swanky Goldney Hall every year, there’s no sign of the branch taking up the cases of any of these four prisoners of conscience from our Chinese twin city in any meaningful way.
Instead, it seems, our local Amnesty members prefer to sip sparkling wines in agreeable surroundings while Mayor Pro-Torture – himself an Amnesty member – is left in peace to regularly travel back and forth to Guangzhou to allegedly promote trade and pick up spurious awards from the torturers of the Chinese Communist Party.
Meanwhile, MERCHANT VENTURER Port of Bristol bosses Terrence Mordaunt and David Ord are similarly left in peace to seek financial support for their deepwater port plan at Avonmouth from the Chinese Communist Party bosses of the GUANGZHOU PORT AUTHORITY.
Surely we should be doing much more to support these prisoners of conscience held and tortured under our noses in our twin city?