This blog is mainly about the governance and future of policing and crime services. (Police & Crime Commissioners feature quite a lot.) But there are also posts about the wider justice system. And because I am town councillor and political activist, local & national issues are covered a little, as well.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Sniping, snipping and snooping

Yes. I heard you Mr Stansfeld.

When asked by Bill Heine (Radio Oxford) on Sunday as to whether you were enjoying the job you replied that you were except for the political sniping. I guess you may have meant me, in part, along with your many other critics (just read the comments on articles such as this one) & the wider news media.

Honestly... what did you expect?

The party that you belong to decided to make the role of Police & Crime Commissioner a political one. You are living with those consequences. Like it or lump it.

Frankly, did you think that politics across Thames Valley was a bit like that which you have been used to in the (cosy?) five villages of West Berkshire that you represent? Indeed you said today (and this may not be an exact quote) that the election you went through was "something I have never gone through before".

Huh...?! You have stood for election before. You remain a Councillor for West Berkshire.

But perhaps you meant that you actually had to defend your position, assert your arguments to a less than convinced / compliant / supine / would vote for an stick insect with a blue rosette on constituency?

That must of been hard for you.

You see the thing is Mr Stansfeld, your party represents (and seriously looks after the interests of) the moneyed classes, the rich, the ones who went to public school and, quite honestly, who have little idea what it is like to go without food because there is nothing in the cupboard and kids must have something to eat before school. Your party is supported by those who are so sublimely confident and sure of their lofty position in the world that the idea of regarding their wealth as anything other a birthright just does not happen. Yours is the party that is punishing people for daring to have a spare room or who have failed an ATOS 'review' of their benefits. Yours is the party that is steadily making the rich richer and the poor poorer. (Is there a 'benefits' cap for landowners getting subsidies from the EU?)

But I suspect that this does not really register on your radar Mr Stansfeld. You appear more concerned about your fellow landowners who lose a few sheep or even a tractor than the lot of people facing daily threats of violence in Slough, Oxford, Reading or Milton Keynes. (Yes, I do say 'fellow landowners' since you own a share of an 8 acre field West of Kintbury...)

And so yes, I will continue to inquire (probably 'snoop' in your view) into your expenses, your priorities, your concerns and the contracts you are signing. I will continue to snip at your ankles since my power is limited beyond scrutiny, exposure, ridicule and challenge.

In short Mr Stansfeld, I and my fellow critics of your regime have only just begun. You have just under three more years of scrutiny.

Please be prepared.

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