A funny thing happened on the way to the forum
On Thursday, my day off and second last day of term, I decided to attend the full council meeting of my local authority. After all, I have aspirations in that direction, and felt that I should really get a look at the process.
If you haven’t already attended a meeting of your local council I would advise you to do so. It brings to mind the old adage ‘You don’t want to see how its made.’ Sausages and Laws.
So firmly ensconced in the public gallery (packed) with a copy of the minutes (tome 1) and a copy of the planning application for a new supermarket (tome2 ) – hence the crowd of suited and booted types. I got myself (un)comfortable, without popcorn, and waited for the show.
If I ran my lectures like this I would get into big trouble, timekeeping is not apparently a priority with cooncil members wandering in for about 10 minutes after the kick off. Lines for the lot of em. The Provost banged her gavel and we were off.
I wont bore you 2nd hand with the minutiae but very quickly I was listening to the wrangling over minutes. He said she said stuff. What surprised me most was the sly national politics digs that started many contributions from the ‘WE WON THE ELECTION PARTY’. Pitiful would be kind, snide, odious and irritatingly smug would be more accurate.
Bitch and bite went on for about 2 hours (I know 2 hours and my ass was numb) before a wee recess was called to refresh before the planning debate.
Debate may be overstating some bits but a reasoned dialogue took place. Some of it was (I’d better say something so I can claim to have supported/opposed the application) and other parts were non-partisan and thoughtful (labour leader Alex Rowley was one such). I did find it hard to believe the droning on when there was nothing to say that went on. Two hours later a vote, application passed (to whooping in the galleries) and an exodus of blackberry wielding suits to report back.
I thoroughly recommend a visit to your council, if nothing more than to see the ones who contribute nothing and yawn all the time (there were a few). The national politics seems to descend to bickering where the politicos cut their teeth. I might have to try and find ways to politely tell some folks to @#!! off.
Punch and judy alive and well in council chambers all over the land I expect.
Not good enough.