Sunday, April 19, 2009

"Athena" introduces herself, and casts a critical eye on Senator Shenton

The time has come for me to stop shouting at the radio, and I haven’t got a cat to kick, so at the invitation of the JDA I am starting a blog which I hope will be a regular feature of the JDA website. I have named my blog after the goddess of wisdom, because I am a female and have attained the age where I might be granted a short space of wisdom before descending into senility. I make every effort to be well-informed, and will attempt to avoid the ranting and invective that Stuart Syvret is prone to. Though I am a JDA member and am largely in sympathy with its policies, the views expressed will be entirely my own. I look forward to readers’ responses.

19th April
So Ben Shenton is to boycott Tuesday’s emergency States sitting, called to raise the issues surrounding the arrest of Stuart Syvret last week. He apparently is unconcerned with the outrageous affront to the rule of law, caused by the police searching the property of a member of the public (and a States Member to boot) and removing goods, without a warrant. Neither is he concerned with the strong-arm and intimidatory tactics, at best a waste of police time, used by the police to take Senator Syvret in for questioning. Instead he chooses to accuse States Members who think they are ‘above the law’ of turning the States into ‘a circus’. Can he not see that it is not States Members, but rather the police, or whoever was behind their actions, who are behaving in a way that suggests they are ‘above the law’ and that places the democratic rights of all of us in jeopardy. As someone who presumably claims to support the democratic process, he should turn up to ensure that the truth is told. Could it be that he needs to spend a further day running his business, rather than give his full attention to the job that he is paid to do? He refers to the public being fed up with the ‘ill-informed minority’. Surely he must be in that category if he is not interested in probing the facts of this case. The politicians he refers to do not consider themselves to be ‘above the law’ (a phrase that is being repeated so often that it is destined to become ‘received ignorance’) but are primarily concerned that the law should be fair and should be applied fairly. (Interestingly, the police are not interested in questioning the witness that suggests a minister, who truly does think he is above the law, is taking back-handers .) There is a mounting body of evidence that the law is being manipulated to the advantage of those that represent the status quo.

Take the subject of the economy that Senator Shenton feels should be a priority. Will any measures taken put money in the hands of those who are likely to pump it straight back into the economy (ie the less well off, who do spend all their money and tend to spend it locally) or will they protect the rich, whose greed created the situation that we are in? And who is likely to promote fairer fiscal measures. Could it be the very members who are under attack? I hope the electorate is able to see through the spin and recognise which politicians are on their side.

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