Thursday 7 January 2010

Clearing the Path

I was out clearing the communal path and a bit of pavement earlier when it struck me that Councillor Norrie Work may not have been at his most eloquent when he was asking Edinburgh residents to take a bit of responsibility for clearing paths; but he was right. When did our society forget its collectivism? As a boy (no, it's not a Monty Python sketch) my brothers and I would clear our path and the pavement in front of the house - and then we'd do the same for the elderly people in the street. When I worked in shops we'd clear the pavement outside the premises and other shopkeepers would do the same. When did people start expecting someone else to do it for them? Norrie might have to do a bit of work on the presentation of his thoughts but he has the right idea - we should all be taking responsibility for the society around us. There's actually a poll being run by the Evening News about whether Councillor Work was right, and one of the options is "Only if we see him doing it first" and, knowing that Norrie lives up to his surname, I expect that he'll be out there helping anyway but we should give him that extra encouragement...

There was some other path-clearing going on today as well, though, and as I was spreading table salt and cat litter on the path (you can't find rock salt or grit for your paths anywhere in Edinburgh just now) it came to me that this was what Hewitt and Hoon were up to earlier today. Bear with me -

1. No-one now believes that Labour is on course to win the election.
2. Hewitt is stepping down at the election and Hoon is likely to - neither has a seat to protect.
3. The rest of those supporting the daft idea - MacTaggart, Sheerman, Field and Clarke - are malcontents.
4. The two dafties have admitted that they hadn't spoken to any senior members of the Labour Party - this was no coup.
5. There is no mechanism within the PLP for such a ballot.
6. No-one could possibly have thought that this would succeed - but it has forced Cabinet members to back Brown with various degrees of alacrity and various levels of enthusiasm.

So here's my considered analysis - Hewitt and Hoon know the ba's on the slates, Gordon Brown will resign as Labour leader and there will be a contest to select a new leader but by that time neither of them will have much influence so they wouldn't have much of a say - and they wouldn't be able to stop Ed Balls taking over, so they've got to clear the path now - not for someone but of someone.

No? Ach well, here's a cheap laugh - Patricia Hewitt's website has a warning on its front page about a scam with an email purporting to be from her which begins:

An e-mail scam is currently doing the rounds, claiming to be from Patricia Hewitt and asking for your assistance in a "charitable" or profitable project."
Not only that - Australia has introduced anti-hoon laws.

Mind how you go!

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