Monday, 30 November 2009

“Put up or SHUT UP”

Here is another reason why so many Jersey Blogsites exist in comparison with any of the other Channel islands. It’s all down to clarity, or lack of it. Our “accredited” media not holding our esteemed leaders to account and simply not asking the questions the general public want answered.

The Christopher Chapman Report and the Terry Le Sueur media campaign are prime examples of how the general public can be left confused, if not, bewildered.

It could be argued that the Report, considering its very limited remit, was a fair and balanced Report. It could also be argued that the author of the report could, or should, have insisted on extending its remit because as it stood it appeared to favour our dictatorship’s agenda of discrediting Senator Syvret.

There is no doubt the Report was damming towards the States Employment Board (SEB) who it claims failed to protect its employees by allowing Senator Syvret to publish, on his Blogsite, VERY serious allegations about them and the SEB did nothing to rebut these allegations in the belief, or the hope, by ignoring the Senator and his allegations, he might go away…………but he didn’t/hasn’t!

One must remember the SEB has only just survived a vote of no confidence!

So everybody will have their own views of the report itself, but that’s not where the confusion and bewilderment arises.

Terry Le Sueur has been all over the “accredited” media making out as though the Report has told Senator Syvret to “put up or shut up” and the “accredited” media have been facilitating this, from what we’ve seen and heard, UNCHALLENGED!

The Chapman Report clearly states.

“ I have a clear view that I had formed shortly after commencing my
investigation and pressed on me by many of those who gave evidence to me
that it is the responsibility of the SEB as the employer to refute publicly any
such allegation that is made in clear, unequivocal and firm but moderate
language that the allegation is baseless. On each occasion the statement
should be backed up wherever possible with the evidence refuting the
allegation. In addition to making the denial as widely available as possible
staff should be made aware it has been done and the material widely
disseminated. It should be posted on the blog. If the Senator refuses to accept
the posting that fact should also be publicised“

So surely that says that Terry Le Sueur, or the SEB, should “put up or shut up” doesn’t it?

The report claims that Senator Syvret has bullied Civil Servants and States employees, and that might very well be so. But unless the SEB carry out the recommendation of the report and that is to rebut his allegations with evidence then - we will never know.

Let’s not forget the “victims” of the Senator’s bullying haven’t been accused of things like throwing too many sickies, some of these people have been accused of being “Child Rapists” “Child Beaters” they’ve been accused of “Corporate Manslaughter” “Mass Murder” “perverting the course of justice” and many of these people have been named.

If they are innocent then the SEB owe it to these people to clear their names and should have done so long before now.

But why hasn‘t it? Why, (despite the Chapman Report recommending the opposite) is Terry Le Sueur telling Senator Syvret to “put up or shut up”? Why aren’t our “accredited” media insisting that Terry Le Sueur does like he said he would and adopt ALL the Report’s recommendations?

What happens if just a FRACTION of what Senator Syvret claims is true? But that’s a whole other Blog!

In the meantime the SEB has an obligation to “put up or SHUT UP” and our “accredited” media have an obligation to make sure this happens.

Submitted by Team Voice.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Screw Scrutiny.

We at the Voice received our usual Friday afternoon e-mail from Scrutiny on 20th November. It gave the schedule of Scrutiny hearings open to the public for the coming week.
On Monday 23rd at 9.30am Dept Mike Higgins was due to chair his Economic Affairs Scrutiny Hearing and Team Voice’s ace reporter was duly sitting outside Le Capelain Room at 9.20 am waiting to be admitted.
He was still waiting there at 11.15am and was only then admitted to the “public hearing.”

Such is the degree of contempt that our so called elected representatives have for the Jersey public.

Of course our man protested and several pathetic apologies were offered but it was just the arrogance of these people who consider themselves so superior once elected to government. Not only was the delay of nearly 2 hours totally unacceptable but permission to video record the proceedings was also refused by Deputy Higgins who invented an instant policy decision that this was “not really a public discussion” at all whilst in the same breath he protested how he was a defender of Team Voice’s battle for the right to report such meetings!

This Scrutiny Panel was composed of Deputies Higgins, Southern, Wimberley, Macon, Labey and Shona Pitman. Tim the Scrutiny Clerk took notes and advised.
Southern left at 10.40. Pitman left at 11.15 and returned at 12.20pm. Higgins left at 12.30pm for a funeral. The meeting terminated at 12.45pm.

Our man then asked if any of the Deputies would give an interview to Team Voice about the proceedings and was refused. Deputy Pitman became very angry and invented another instant policy that if we wanted an interview then we should have applied formally at the outset so that the Panel could authorise it.

Unfortunately this is not a unique example. A previous Scrutiny panel was cancelled altogether with no prior public advice but our complaints were never answered. At another hearing 3 of us sat outside for 40 minutes waiting to be recalled into the public part of the meeting and then were told it was our own fault!

The irony is that Scrutiny Panels claim that they want to engage with the public. They seek public participation yet they would rather pay to print their own “Scrutiny News” or advertise in Mike Vibert and Deputy Le Claire’s “Isle” freebie rag than allow bloggers like us to write honest and critical comments on their activities.

Make no mistake, these Scrutiny people are dangerous because they officially occupy a political void.

Yet, at this meeting there were revelations that the Airport is likely to go bust next year and that air traffic controllers are being phased out, that airport employment practices probably do not follow agreed procedures and that an absurd security fence was not required around Guernsey or Gibraltar airports.

It was also suggested that the Economic Stimulus package was often farcically inept and that many young Highlands Students were merely a parking exercise to disguise unemployment figures, that there was no definition of “small company” and that Enterprise Board staff were often incompetent to advise applicants and that the whole Jersey Enterprise project enjoyed a huge budget and needed a thorough and critical examination etc etc. There were also allegations that the States Assembly had been told “lies” in response to Scrutiny’s Depositors Protection Scheme Report.
There is much that needs to be reported on at such meetings, but the public and the “accredited press” are seldom present.

These assembled Deputies had rambled on for 3 hours without achieving much except munching through the chocolate biscuits and deciding that there were so many matters that needed to be scrutinized that they did not know where to start – and that the Intellectual Property Rights proposals were just too complicated for them!!! And they would need to employ outside consultants to make sense of the 200 pages proposition that lay before them and that a whole new Department of Intellectual Property might be needed just like JFSC in the near future………….If The Voice had been granted an interview or been allowed to video record the proceedings we could have added to general public knowledge and awareness. But this is the crazy world of scrutiny and it’s more about building up political careers than educating the plebs.

One refreshing incident did occur though. Whilst our man was sitting and waiting for entry into this Papal enclave a charming lady of a certain age appeared and asked “Can I get you anything?” Our man replied “A Colt 45 with 6 rounds would be useful” but the lady replied “I can only get you a glass of cold water”.
Our man thanked her for her kindness but explained that this would not achieve the desired result…..

Submitted by Thomas Wellard.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

DAVOS or be damned!

The Master Plan for Jersey includes the aim of “developing the Island’s international personality” – or as a 1950’s B movie pimp might have said to his whore “get out on those streets and sell yourself.”

Of course, many of our leaders were weaned on 1950’s B movies so the aspiration to prostitute the island’s charms around the world’s money spots is as natural as breast-feeding.

Davos, the largest ski resort in Switzerland is just such a place for those willing to sell their souls and bodies. The world’s jet setters and camp followers arrive here every year by the hundreds of thousands for the Alpine delights and off piste pleasures and the Royal sightings at nearby and super expensive Klosters have been an annual treat for the brainless.

It would be difficult to imagine a more suitably decadent location for the Annual Conference of the World Economic Forum and so it is that every year the world’s most affected and delusionary “leaders” gather here to “improve the state of the world.”

But you may well ask – why has Jersey never had an official presence here? What a wasted opportunity to trawl the hotel corridors with our goodies on display and why don’t we address the conference itself and reveal to the entire world what we have hidden under our rather dull exterior!

Now that we are selling ourselves in Paris, Hong Kong and Mumbai we should be foolish not to consider an official presence at Davos where we might bump into the really big boys of the international scene.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) organises such gatherings on a regular basis all round the world. It is of course big business but all done “on a non-profit making basis” and it claims to be an independent organisation “committed to improving the state of the world by engaging leaders in partnership to shape global, regional and industry agendas – and “is tied to no political, partisan or national interests.”

This year they are currently now in India and there is a Summit in Dubai next week.
The next Davos Conference is January 2010 and then its, Tanzania, Colombia, Vietnam and Morocco. We wonder how the world could have managed without Jersey’s previous participation?

For those countries and businesses that take part – it can be a whole way of life for regular participants and now that so much of the world-wide finance and banking business has been exposed as wholly undesirable – our “international personality” must be looking a bit jaded.

But who could we send out as our official “international” person with a suitable personality to promote our seductive charms? Could Chief Minister Terry Le Sueur really be the man for such a job?

On the other hand, it is noted that Jersey’s 4 man Bobsleigh team is seeking a brakeman and the versatile CM, not to say dead weight, would be ideal for this task too – especially since he is rumoured to be available from January 2010.

But of course, Jersey people are spoilt for choice. We have the man in the funny hat, who must be bored out of his brains for most of his time. And now we have the recently retired Bailiff too and he is fully committed to Jersey’s international role and the ability to “punch above our weight”.

We are blessed too with such a wealth of resident talent from arms salesmen, ex mercenaries, property speculators and bankers that we really are confused - although it is a great shame that Max Wall has left us.

The man who couldn’t retire – Colin “Kissinger” Powell – would no doubt be a popular choice as Jersey’s official Foreign Secretary and International Fixer but we have decided to throw it open to a competition.

Who do you think that we should send to Davos in January 2010?

Don’t forget, that we have 53 wonderfully qualified elected States Members to choose from too.

Competition Rules

Please Note ; Only 1 vote per participant is permitted.
and no entries can be accepted from relatives of Team Voice or from Senator Philip Ozouf or members of his fan club.

Submitted by Thomas Wellard.