So that's what they call garage music...
AS THOUSANDS of people lose their jobs every week in the private sector, Wee Gordie Broon’s Turkey Army marches on in double time, with eight out of 10 local councils announcing that they have no plans to cut back on planned recruitment.
Thus we have £40,000-a-year posts (plus gold-plated pensions) for Sausage Content Enforcement Officers, Stairlift Speed Control Executives and Canine Kerbside Output Managers. Well, probably, anyway.
I suspect that it was one of these made-up-job merchants who turned up at the garage workshop of 61-year-old mechanic Len Attwoood, in Witham, Essex. The chap with the clipboard (and surely a high-visibility jacket, hard hat and ear defenders) informed Les that he was from the Performing Rights Society and had noticed that the premises didn’t display a sticker showing that he had a licence to play music in public. This is not surprising, because Les doesn’t even have a radio, never mind a revolving Sunday Night at the London Palladium stage on which top variety acts regularly perform, watched by Simon Cowell, some dolly bird, and that bucket of lard Piers Morgan.
But wait, sayeth the jobsworth, your customers might have their car radios playing when they drive into your garage. Verily, thou will either buy a PRS licence or thou will be fined a cool £2,000.
And what do you do? How do you appeal against the mindless excesses of these people? Well you don’t, unless you fancy taking them on in the High Court while running up thousands of pounds of legal bills (while they fund their own action out of your council tax).
We’re being bullied, harried, picked on and victimised and no-one seems to give a damn. Worse than that, our elected authorities seem to be forever searching for new ways in which to punish us … and then charge us for the privilege.
Can no-one stop this madness?
TELL ME this. If Nick Leeson got six-and-a-half years in prison in Singapore for “speculative trading”, why aren’t we seeing British bankers being marched off in handcuffs? What’s the difference?
Their lack of care has plummeted the financial industry into crisis, pensioners and savers have seen their investment income decimated, bully boy tactics are being employed against anyone who might accidentally miss a credit card payment and the £500 billion that Wee Gordie bailed them out with seems to have disappeared into thin air and they’re back banging on the door asking for more. To the tune of another £410 billion, if you don’t mind.
I have an idea where all that dosh might be going, and it’s not to us. A mole tells me that bankers are being made redundant by one firm, collecting their big cheques, and then moving on to the next branch in the City. The big job losses you keep hearing about aren’t affecting the boys in the red braces; the permanent victims are low-level admin staff. Worse than that, when they move to their new desks a few hundred yards down the road, they’re going into positions with guaranteed bonuses (yes, bonuses) set at 2007 levels.
Now it seems to me that we now own most of the banks in this country. Is it therefore unreasonable that the government should apply a bit of common sense to the manner in which billions of our pounds are being chucked away willy nilly? Because the snouts are obviously still in the trough, and nobody seems to be able to do anything about it.
I SUPPOSE a more sensible question would be: “Is there anyone not on the take?” We’re used to our policemen having second jobs while they’re supposed to be out on the beat … or filling in diversity questionnaires. Now, after retiring at the age of 45 with a handsome pension, they’re piling into lucrative second careers, but once again at the public expense.
When Deputy Assistant Commissioner Alf Hitchcock leaves the Metropolitan Police in April, aged 49, he’ll go with an £80,000-a-year pension. And where will he go? Straight into a £120,000 a year job with a government quango called the National Police Improvement Agency, where he will ‘mentor’ potential chief constables. And where he will pocket another huge pension once he retires from that job.
I reckon Nick Leeson got it wrong. He should have joined the local Plod.
I TURNED on the television on Tuesday afternoon in a state of great excitement, expecting to see a successful black man in the prime of his life enthralling his audience with the power of his personality. Instead those idiots at the BBC had gone and replaced Ready Steady Cook with some tosh from America.
I don’t know what all the fuss is about when it comes to Barry Obama. Is it really so special to have a black President? Zimbabwe has had one for years, and you could hardly call him a raging success.
And then there’s the biggest disappointment: Obama can’t dance. All these years we wait for a black President, and when one turns up he wibbles around the dance floor at his inauguration balls like a drunken uncle at Christmas. What were the odds on that, eh?
POOR BOY George, banged up for 15 months after an unfortunate bit of rent boy/radiator interface. Never again will he be able to sing: “I’m a man, without conviction…”