Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Protecting you from the truth....

Heather Brooke that excellent Freedom of Information Campaigner who singlehandedly exposed the MPs expenses scandal and in the process got rid of the previous Speaker, Michael Martin, has written a book, some of which was printed in the Mail on Sunday.

Using the Freedom of Information Act, a tool which she wields to ruthless effect, she has uncovered the massive scandal of how much money is being paid out to spin doctors and PR consultants to protect you from the truth. Heather has uncovered an immense racket by government and local councils to disguise fact with their own versions of the truth.

I suppose one of the latest government efforts to disguise the truth came with the television advert 'The Police Pledge' which was so utterly misleading that it had to be withdrawn. Even in this day and age where the gullible public will swallow almost anything 'The Police Pledge' was a step too far!

Heather Brooke has revealed that the budget for government and council spin has, even in this age of so called austerity, been rocketing which I suppose is the most severe criticism of our Political Class. Take for example the glossy new booklets which have suddenly sprung up in so many areas in recent months. I suspect that most households just treat them like junk mail but they always portray the local council as that sweet, cuddly, maiden aunt catering for all your needs.

The truth is of course generally the reverse. Look at the pot holes in the roads, the cut backs in library and museum services, the closing of homes for the elderly, the fuss over our refuse collection and most of all the lack of police on the streets. Conversely view the bloated salaries of the Chief Officers! Look at the adds in newspapers for Outreach Workers or Climate Change Coordinators. Then contrast what the modern councllor takes out of the public purse for expenses in comparison to their predecessors.

The glossy brochures obscure the truth with their pictures of smiling bobbies meeting the community, the elderly being tenderly cared for and Chief Constables pictured with smiling children. Even the mainstream media report that Home Office Statistics contain 'statistical lacunae', which means that they are not worth the paper that they are printed on!

This is yet another example of NoLab trickery which the Tories are failing to focus upon. Any area where we could really save money should be under scrutiny but it appears that it is being ignored as long as it is politically expedient to do so. On Newsnight last night I watched three politicians, including NoLab's Ed Miliband, squabble like schoolchildren for something like ten minutes without producing one single coherent suggestion to our problems. Pathetic!

In the meantime Heather Brooke continues with her FOI requests and continues to expose the lies and deceipt. Good luck to her.

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