November 2012 Archives

THE press office at Liverpool council has a system by which staff rate the daily media coverage of town hall comings and goings.

Stories are ranked as either "positive", "neutral" or "negative".

Needless to say, as some of the daily round-ups which Mr Brocklebank has inadvertently been copied into suggest, very seldom is it that any story, no matter how critical, is put down as negative. Neutral, it would seem, is a far more ... well, neutral word.

If you gathered all of the families and friends of the 96 victims of the Hillsborough disaster and asked them for their stories, you'd get a uniform shared sense of loss. Understandable. Predictable, even. But if you explored each individual's journey over the past 23 years, every complex story of grief, disbelief, betrayal, hurt, anger, loss and a myriad of other emotions would be quite unique.

Long term supporter of the families Phil Scraton spoke on Wednesday night at St Georges Hall about his own journey, specifically as a member of the Hillsborough Independent Panel over the last couple of years.

Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson wrote to Labour party members in the city to set out some "facts" about recent ECHO coverage.

Naturally the email was leaked.

The email is below. The context of this email was that it was sent after the ECHO revealed how the Labour party had removed the man who instigated the clear-up of transport authority Merseytravel from his job.

Cllr Joe Hanson, who represents the Kirkdale ward, in Liverpool, was also stripped of an advisory role to Mayor Joe Anderson.

It followed a disciplinary investigation into an email conversation he had with a constituent carer, Audrey O'Keefe, in which he said cabinet member for adult services Roz Gladden "hated" her.

As he makes clear in his email Mayor Anderson does not believe this is a matter of "real public interest".

The proud tradition of leaking emails at Liverpool council shows no sign of letting up.

Today we report how one of Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson's advisors Peter Brennan has been forced to apologise after launching an outspoken attack on the city's Labour MPs. Read the full story HERE.

But below is the email correspondence that lead to this story. Deputy Mayor Paul Brant has always had his head screwed on right, and puts a stop to the email conversation with the sagely advice: "Can I please remind people that we should not put in writing anything that we would not be happy to have on the front page of the echo.

"Please don't continue this discussion in this forum, and we need to keep our conversations in a comradely tone."

It seems Mayor Anderson was not very happy with the ECHO looking into this story, but that will be the subject of another blog post.

Here is the email exchange started by Cllr Brennan:

You better watch out, you better not cry, you better pay up I'm telling you why,
Mr Tory's coming to town.
He's making his cuts, checking them twice,he doesn't think that benefits are nice,
Mr Tory's coming to town.
He sees where you are sleeping.
He knows if a bedroom's spare, that empty bed cant hide from him, he can tell if no one's there.
And if you've any children, and they number more than two,
you'd better hide the others, or he'll tax you for them too!
He can't wait for April, he's planned who he will curse
With extra cuts so he can make next Christmas even worse!



Cath Bore is a author.
You can follow her on Twitter @cathbore, read her own blog MERSEY WRITER ABOUT TOWN HERE or visit her website HERE

nicksmall.jpgMuch has been written about the success of independent candidates in elections, which saw independents poll over 1.2m votes in the Police & Crime Commissioner elections, 12 independents becoming Police Commissioners and an independent beating Labour to become Bristol's first elected Mayor.

Some of the success of independents is no doubt down to the fact that these were elections being held on a cold, dark Thursday in November, the role of Police Commissioner was one few really understood or a post that people wanted to keep somehow above politics.

But if the results do mark a new departure in citizen-based politics, is this actually good for democracy?

"GO TO vote to shape future of policing?" "Stay in and watch Bargain Hunt?" "Go to vote to shape future of policing?" "Stay in and watch Bargain Hunt?"

It was a tough choice, but one where the latter option won out for the vast majority of people last Thursday, when the election of Merseyside's first police commissioner was held.

It was, going by the turnout, the moment 87% of people hadn't been waiting for. And although Labour's Jane Kennedy was returned with a considerable majority (albeit the largest share of next to nothing), it seemed like something of a Pyrrhic victory.

My previous post on the result of the November 2012 Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner election included a pie chart showing how the number of registered electors who 'abstained' vastly outnumbered those who took part.

I've now updated this graphic so that it includes an estimate for the total number of eligible, but unregistered, electors in Merseyside. It looks like this:

Mersey PCC pie chart 2.png
Click on the image to view a larger version.

I've posted two graphs below, both of which I circulated on twitter earlier today, shortly after the Police and Crime Commissioner results for Merseyside were announced.

The first is a simple bar chart, showing the number of votes for each candidate. As any reader of this blog probably knows already, the Labour candidate Jane Kennedy won by a huge margin, securing 56% of the first preference votes.

Mersey PCC results graph.png
Click on the graph to view a larger version

Joe_Anderson_OBE.jpgLiverpool Mayor Joe Anderson was unusually absent from the count at for the Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner.

That's because he was today made an Officer of the British Empire (OBE).

During an Investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace in central London he was given the honour by the Queen.

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David Bartlett

David Bartlett

City editor of the Post and Echo covering politics, regeneration, and urban affairs.
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