OLD MOLE’S ONLINE DIARY
Uh-oh. Some public-spirited Thanet folk are lining up to sign up to “Clean for The Queen”.
This campaign, championed by the Daily Mail and supported by McDonald’s, aims “to clear up Britain” in time for Her Majesty the Queen’s 90th birthday in June 2016.
I wonder if anyone’s asked Her Madge if she’s actually in favour of this strangely feudal project.
I don’t think they have, because I’m sure straightaway she’d have got onto her prime minister, David Cameron.
“Hey, Dave, my man,” she’d say, “vis a vis getting’ these ’ere streets clean, wouldn’t they be a lot jolly cleaner if you government chappies hadn’t been cutting local authority budgets by £18 billion in real terms since 2010, like wot it says in my Financial Times?”
And Her Madge would be dead right because just look what’s been happening in Thanet.
Our street cleaners have been cut by a third in the four years up to 2014.
In that time Margate’s cleaners fell from 14 to 9, Ramsgate’s from 13 to ten.
Poor old Broadstairs got the worst of it – losing 60 per cent of its cleaners – meaning it ended up with just two cleaners.
Our streets have been getting dirtier because there are fewer street cleaners to clean them.
And it’s getting worse
In fact, if cuts to our street cleaners go on at their current rate, blogger Matt Brown has worked out, that by 2021 we will have no cleaners at all.
So please Queenie, or any peasants out there good-heartedly thinking of signing up to the campaign in her name – if you want to get our streets clean, ask Dave to stop cutting the money going to our councils.
Then not only could we have cleaner streets, we could have a few more jobs around here, too.
Poor areas such as Thanet will be among the highest areas of priority for a new Labour government, says Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.
Mr McDonnell said: “Thanet epitomises the enduring poverty and inequality which bedevils large parts of the UK. When Labour regains power we must turn things round.”
“We will work to bring jobs to the people of these areas, together with all the precious things jobs bring with them, like dignity, self-worth, self-esteem.”
Mr McDonnell will be coming to Ramsgate in Thanet on Tuesday 19 January at the invitation of the Momentum Thanet group.
Momentum Organiser Jackie Walker, who lives in Broadstairs, said this will be a unique opportunity for people in Thanet to find out for themselves about the policies and ideas of the new “People’s Chancellor”.
Jackie said: “We’ve heard much on the TV and in the newspapers about the Labour opposition under the new leader Jeremy Corbyn. But now we’ll have a chance to hear from one of Jeremy’s closest colleagues and to question him. ”
Mr McDonnell will be speaking about his “new economics” – Labour’s plans to fight against austerity – and how a Labour government led by Jeremy Corbyn will change things in Thanet.
Mr McDonnell visited Thanet last year and said he was struck by how the Isle, though in the south east of England, shares many of the problems of the poorest areas in the north, hit by the run-down of industries like coal and steel.
“For years and years generations of British people have been left with unemployment or sub-employment – part-time work without prospects and zero-hours contracts. Thanet has suffered all this along with the social breakdown that goes with it. When Labour gain power, turning this round this will be at the top of our agenda.”
The shadow chancellor is also likely to be questioned on his attitude to referendum on the European Union, the Trident nuclear missile system, Britain’s bombing of Syria, and Jeremy Corbyn’s reshuffle of the shadow cabinet.
Mr McDonnell will be speaking at 7pm, Tuesday 19 January in the Kings Theatre, Kings Street, Ramsgate. Officially the event is sold out, but there may be late cancellations. Ring 07989 070843 or 01843 604633 or email email@example.com for more details.
Extracts from a public meeting held by Thanet Watch in Broadstairs on August 1. Campaigners put the case to support Jeremy Corbyn for leader of the Labour Party.
A demonstration was held this morning against Thanet’s new MP, Craig Mackinlay.
The demo was triggered by Mackinlay’s support for the government’s policies on austerity, fracking and fox hunting.
Over 70 people chanted and protested outside the Conservative Party office in Broadstairs CT10 2AD (near Broadstairs railway station).
The protestors were addressed by the Green Party’s Ian Driver who attacked Mackinlay for his “hypocrisy.”
There will be a video report on the demonstration on this site soon.
Want to cast a vote against austerity?
You can now – courtesy of the imminent Labour Party leadership election.
This is because one of the candidates in the election is Jeremy Corbyn MP, a lifelong campaigner on the left of the party who has explicitly opposed austerity policies.
And you can vote for him WITHOUT being a member of the Labour Party. All you need to do is become a registered supporter of the Labour Party – which costs only £3 (more on http://support.labour.org.uk/ ).
Jeremy was against the Iraq war, a strong supporter of Tony Benn and is among the greenest of MPs this side of Caroline Lucas.
He also came to Thanet in recent months to canvass against UKIP.
Here he is speaking at a recent anti-austerity rally in London.
The deadline to register is August 12 and the ballot closes on 10 September.