Saturday, February 01, 2014

A Third World Man

While the authorities take rather longer than I might have expected, concluding the investigation, which led to my remarks last week, as I wait to press 'Publish' on a story which is already written, I might as well write something else while we wait.

One of my favourite bands from the past, was Steely Dan, which were big during my University days in the United States. There was one song, 'Johnny is a Third World Man', which oddly, I was reminded of, last week, when councillors were invited to a briefing on the work of the Margate task Force; which integrates all the important support and intervention services into a single team, dealing with the priority wards of Margate central and Cliftonville-west. I have to admit, that within a minute of so of the Police inspector's briefing starting, my jaw was in danger of bouncing off the table in front of me.



Let me say first of all, that the Task Force are doing remarkable and vital work, dealing with challenges that lie somewhere between the darker pages of a Charles Dickens novel and the worst examples of inner city dystopia; all within two square miles of a Thanet town.

Almost within a single sentence, I heard, Sexual Abuse, Honey Boys, Syphilis, STDs, Crack Cocaine, Crystal Meth and the influence of Jamaican and Somali gangs. We heard of unusually high levels of mental illness, punishment stabbings and more besides but I think by now you grasp the picture. And thanks to the ability to overlay statistics on Google maps, we could see where crime and health issues are clustered in particular roads, as data from the emergency services and local government were integrated to deliver a graphic picture of despair.

The good news, if you can call it that, is the police firmly believe they now have these areas under control and that it's focused intervention from local government, health, housing and social services, such as mobile doctors, dentists and health workers, which will make the difference in rolling back the tide. The police also would like to use the lessons learned in Margate, to start introducing similar initiatives in other areas of Thanet, some surrounding the priority hot-spots, to also re-assert finer control and improve health outcomes.

So what does this tell us? I'm sure readers will arrive at their own conclusions. On the one hand, we have visible and encouraging signs of regeneration in Margate, thanks to the 'Turner effect.' On the other and thanks, in part, to the ready availability of cheap rental properties and uncontrolled inward migration, we have third world levels of despair and disease on our doorstep that are sucking-in huge level of resource and effort from all the different agencies focused on improving people's lives and fighting crime.

It was not lost on me and I'm sure the police too, that last week, an attempt to introduce an amendment to the immigration bill, to deport foreign criminals and prevent them hiding behind the European Human Rights Act was lost in Parliament and I would like to congratulate those members of the Labour Party and Liberal Democrats who feel so passionately, that we should defend and nurture such offenders in our own communities. In Thanet, sadly the statistics speak for themselves.

So, a pat on the back for the Margate Task Force but at the meeting, I expressed my own deep concern that serious diseases such as Syphilis were making an appearance and at levels higher than one would expect in this small population. There's frequently a separate narrative to this but there appears a reluctance to discuss it publicly and this may be associated with the prevailing atmosphere of political correctness.

Cllr Iris Johnston said that such problems existed in the 1960s and to a certain extent, yes they did in many parts of the country; particularly in slum inner city areas. But that's fifty years ago, almost the entire lifetime of a welfare state, which has still managed to deliver the likes of Benefits Street to our TV screens. I would say that Margate and Cliftonville when I was a boy, looked very different, when I used to shop at Les Riggs Sports or Bobby's Department Store. Today, we have equally different problems facing a completely new generation and drugs, health and organised crime present a unique challenge to everyone involved and trying so very hard to deliver the outcomes on which to build a better future for everyone, living in the areas involved.

37 comments:

Anonymous said...

This shows the deception of "The Turner effect", which has involved tens of millions of pounds being pumped into one small area, for the benefit of grant-aided businesses catering for a tiny elite. Your report highlights real problems in the "real" Margate, conveniently ignored by those who have the ear of the media and would have us believe that everything is wonderful.

Anonymous said...

Watched BBC South East last night, about Pleasurama featuring Ian Driver.

When I read the documents early last year, it was some kind of planning permission which was to expire at the end of December 2013. With the option to extend it if the building works were near completion (which it obviously isnt!).

What the news report didn't mention, was that the developers have some stupidly long lease on the land (1000yrs or something).
So the TDC have the right, to block the developement, but the developers still control the pleasurama site for the remainder of the lease.

So I'm not sure what Ian Driver is so excited for.

Barry James said...

Anon firstly the leases are 3 separate leases (hotel, flats, and a mixed development ie restaurants) of 199 years. secondly they depend on the development agreement which ceases on the 28/2/2014 and which SFP Ventures (UK) ltd (the developer) is in a "material Breach" of. Obvious that last as they will not complete the development in one month whatever their spurious excuses are.

Anonymous said...

Just in case you publish.

The report I wrote to send to Lord Carlile QC and the QC who monitors Terrorism Act.

As you know I suggested that we legislate a Duties to the Realm Act.

To consolidate all mandatory duties to report knowledge to a constable.

As you know TDC does not have a policy or guidance covering the whole of the existing mandatory reporting requirements.

But I also suggested that a new law should resurrect into statute the old Common Law of Misprision of Felony.

In 1967 Harold Wilson got rid of it and changed the law by Criminal Justice Act.

So up to 67 it was an offence to fail to report knowledge of crime.

Up to 67 every person had a duty in law to get involved and report. It being a criminal offence to fail to do so.

What Wilson brought in was an offence that only made it an offence to conceal knowledge of crime if you are paid for your silence.

And at a stroke the new virtue became "Don't get involved".

And at a stroke everyone had the pleasure of rights with none of the pain of responsibilities.

And my goodness did the rights industry take off. Inventing rights, defining rights, redefining rights.

And we hear things like "Close knit community" And the Police are supposed to become social workers to earn the trust of the community whose culture is to be silent to police. And we even think it is virtuous to understand the culture.

Hate crime ? Brilliant eh. For over 1000 years the principle of offending is that offend against one is offending against all. But now if a white man hits a black man he has offended more against black people than against white. Whereas the foundation of law is that he offends against ALL in equal measure.

There is a madness stalking the land. And if rights and multiculturalism are the answer what have we to show for half a century of it ?

Constables ? A joke. gain office by swearing no fear, no favour, no malice, no ill will.

First day at police college "Today we start your home office key competency training section 1 respect for diversity"

And the constable learns that his oath is just an anachronism what he really has to do is be aware of the fears and favours built into the multicultural system. That his oath is based on Justice being blind but the way it is really done is to take a quick ethnicity squint.

I am sure we have to restore the Common Law, Common Sense, Common Courtesy, Common Decency system. Blind to diversity and all equal under the law.

What was the point of my uncle and father and their generation beating the Nazis ? To end racial typing ? The label hanging upon which hate grows

And what did we get ? A system Hitler wouldn't have aspired to. About 16 labels invented by sociologists. Hitler only had Jew, Freemason, Irish, Slav and Gyspy on his monitoring policy.

But we outdo him by a mile because we have monitoring forms with about 16 boxes to choose from. Tick the box that most closely matches your ethnicity. My God and people take it seriously.

It's a con. If govt want to convince me they are treating us all equally don't have a monitoring form. Don't know who you are dealing with. Deal with everyone the same.





Simon Moores said...

Let's say I'm in a charitable mood this afternoon.

Anonymous said...

And hitching a ride on that mood! anyone know what the HMS was in the Margate roads tonight? She'd moved off by 9pm.

Anonymous said...

I am well aware of this "explosive" story that you are waiting to publish that you say will shock us all. There are certain facts that you can print so instead of playing the hard nosed reporter role, go ahead and tell your readers. It is not strictly speaking true that the BBC have this embargoed and it's my understanding that any "allegations" that have been made will be dropped.

Simon Moores said...

1:08 you must be from the BBC then as you clearly know more about this than matter anyone else. However I really must extend the police the courtesy of a little more time to reach their conclusions as I would not wish to undermine their inquiries without good cause unless I judged them to be delaying unnecessarily.

Anonymous said...

1:08 is Barry James, who "heard from a friend of John Worrow that he's not guilty"!

Simon Moores said...

I just spoke with the police and have agreed not to publish anything before Friday on the story that has given me recent cause for concern.

Anonymous said...

Of course if it was Friday on Jupiter...................

Anonymous said...

anon 5.48...but he would say that wouldn't he!

Anonymous said...

So you are now making "agreements" with the police are you? Your comments about this alleged explosive story are malicious and disturbing.I suggest you come clean,admit there is no story.I understand that you yourself were questioned by the police.Maybe this would be more in the public interest.

Simon Moores said...

You appear intensely curious and badly informed at the same time 10:56. And "yes" I did agree that I would not publish this particular story before Friday.

Anonymous said...

Not particularly curious but wondering why you seen intent on making people's lives a complete misery by posting such comments about this non-story But if you think it's acceptable for a person in your position - ie a Thanet councillor - to make "agreements" with the police,maybe the public should be made aware.

Barry James said...

How strange that anons think I post as an anon. I wonder how I managed to get under someone's skin to such an extent.
Still I'm sure Friday will come soon enough

Simon Moores said...

12:50.. Unless you haven't been paying attention, the public have been made aware of it and there is absolutely nothing irregular in this arrangement.

Anonymous said...

I'm neither intensely curious or badly informed, but what does concern me that you,in your capacity as a Thanet councillor, are making secret deals with the police. Maybe the public should be made aware of that?

Simon Moores said...

A secret 2:46 is something clandestine or concealed. This is simply an open agreement on my part not to write my story before Friday in order to be of assistance to the police.

Anonymous said...

Me thinks some of your contributors are getting mixed up between two separate stories. What a laugh to see those so touchy in bloggers world spinning on their own axis!

Anonymous said...

Whether or not it's you Barry, don't deny that you've been emailing everyone claiming Worrow's innocence because a friend of his told you so. I have the email here in front of me.

Paul said...

Unrelated to this subject - sorry. I wondered if anyone had noticed how 'cheap' petrol is in Thanet at the moment? 126.9 can be found is several Isle locations - I drove to Canterbury a couple of weekends ago intending to fill up at Asda but found it only 0.2p per litre cheaper. Sainsbury's in Crayford (near my parents in law) always used to have petrol at least 3p a litre cheaper than Thanet but this weekend was 128.9. Does anyone know is there has been a campaign of some sort, is it an effect of the wind farms somehow or is it just good luck?! 126.9 is still too high really but beggars can't be choosers I guess!

Anonymous said...

Anon 1250 seems to have something to worry about if they are 'distressed'

Barry James said...

oh wow 5.09 you have a fake email in front of you. How sad for you, shame you dont share it on your own blog.

How did I get under your skin maybe you have something to hide.

Simon Moores said...

I think that's enough of other people's emails gentlemen. I do try very hard to keep the standard of debate a little higher than might be found elsewhere.

Barry James said...

Simon I am concerned that you let potentially libelous comments to actually see the light of day. As moderator all you need to do is delete comments like it.

Simon Moores said...

Barry.. as a moderator, it's frequently hard to distinguish between banter and what may or may not be malicious comment. I can't read every comment to try and make a judgement in that context. Defamation is a complex subject. My obligation under law is to review and or remove material promptly on request.

If you believe that anything here is potentially libellous or even untrue, please inform me by email and I will take the correct steps.

Simon Moores said...

What a rude little man you are 14:56 - no I have not published your comment - But I recognise you from many years in your finest role of 'creature of the night' smearing your remarks across Thanet's weblogs and indulging your own personal campaign of hatred against anyone of anything vaguely Conservative.

Now if you read across the sidebar and I assume you can read and perhaps even count too, you will see there is a monthly count of visitors.

You hate it, yes I know, nobody reads my weblog except a few right wing and homophobic fanatics... right?

But your opinions are anonymous and quite worthless in the greater scheme of things. Nobody really cares what you think, who you are or indeed, even who you hate. So off you go back whence you came and frighten small children instead.

Anonymous said...

IT'S FRIDAY!!! :-)

Anonymous said...

it's not five to five yet.

Anonymous said...

simon, sometimes you only get one chance at things, why don't you go for thanet south?

Duncan Smithson said...

Good to have you back! Now - where were we. Oh yea. The interweb. And defamation. I too have looked into this as my site suffered similar accusations. My legal advice came back as "if its your honest opinion, you are ok". I personally dont like comments about the person - not the issue they represent. People that speak in public should accept that - if they offer an opinion, others may disagree. When they start confusing the person with the issue, that is wrong and I disagree with that. Hammy - for example - said some things I agreed with BUT his words would always be embellished with personal insults. This is not right in my mind.

I had some people over Christmas who were discussing dumping all their rubbish on Alan Pooles lawn. This is going too far and I stopped the discussion.

But if you express an opinion you have to accept that others will disagree. And not everyone will say nice things. I dont endorse this kind of reply but accept that it is a natural result of expressing an opinion.

I hope everything goes well for you Simon. But perhaps we all need to learn to accept the limitations of others

Simon Moores said...

I think that while I could throw my hat in the ring, a 'local' personality would muddy the waters and I would be very reluctant to expose my family to the unpleasantness that would follow. Best to have someone without the baggage that TDC brings with it?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Duncan, go for it Simon! That way Will is guaranteed to win!

Bemused of Birchington said...

Gobsmacked springs to mind. As a "Troll" I have never found your blog anything other than fair and open minded. I did once attempt to post a comment on a blog protesting against the campaign to preserve the Thanet Press site since I think it is the ugliest building in Margate. This comment was not published by the blog owner.

Anonymous said...

I'm not clear from your very long article published on 11 February - was there a conspiracy?

Simon Moores said...

Can't really help you beyond directing you back at the detailed explanation in the text