Today is a momentous day in Barnet. Our esteemed leader of Barnet Council today joins the league of Politicians who have a nickname. It seems to really get on you need a nickname. Maggie Thatcher was "the Iron Lady", Peter Mandleson is "The Prince of Darkness", Michael Heseltine is "Tarzan" and John Prescott is "Two Jags". Once you've got a nickname, you've made it. Well as of today Mr Mike Freer will be known as Mike "Two Blogs" Freer. You see, good old two blogs has got not one, but two blogs.
He has his trusty old blog on the Barnet Times. Now for most of us one blog (Free of charge on the Times) would be enough (some would say too many). Not good old "Two Blogs". He's had a nice brand new one set up for him called Leader Listens. This one has been paid for by the taxpayers of Barnet so good old "Two Blogs" can really keep us up to date. Now you'd think that with TWO BLOGS, he'd have been telling us all about the latest progress with the Council's latest cock up regarding the lost £27.5 Million in Iceland. Here is a quick summary of what Two blogs has to say on the subject in his two blogs. I've sumamrised the questions and answers which you may be concerned with :-
Q: Will the Barnet Council Tax go up if the money can't be recovered?
A: " "
Q: Will Barnet Council employees pensions be threatened by the loss of funds?
A: " "
Q: How could such a situation occur and why weren't the proper controls in place?
A: " "
Q: Is the Library renewal and the Pavement renewal program threatened?
A: " "
Q: Will front line services to Old people suffer?
A: " "
Q: Were the Council borrowing funds to gamble in dodgy investments?
A: " "
You may wonder why Two Blogs hasn't answered. He has two blogs where he could have. Let's hope he takes these questions and pastes in the answers. It really wouldn't be that hard would it? I wait with baited breath. His last entry on the Times blog was on the 8th October and on his council funded one was on the 3rd October. For someone with two blogs, he hasn't had much to say, has he?
Now while we're at it discussing the media, I must respond to a few private emails I've had re the press in Barnet. There have been suggestions that the Edgware Times has become a Tory Propaganda rag and that it's editor is biased towards the Tories. People have suggested that I've been gagged. Well no I haven't, I just don't want to public air any dispute I may have with them. I will say this. I don't think Phil Crowther is biased towards the Tories. If he was, he'd have banned Two Blogs column long ago. It seems to me that every time Two blogs opens his mouth he damages the Barnet Tories. His response to critics is always brittle. He complains about his "Critics cossetted by family wealth" forgetting these people are the backbone of the Tory party. He berates the Taxpayers alliance for being naive and is quite rude and patronising to them. Again I am sure this organisation is not exactly a front for the British Communist Party. In fact the biggest favour the Times could do Freer is to ban him completely from the paper. The Tories nationally are doing OK and as I see it he's Labour's only hope of hanging on to Finchley. The Times also has a rather good facility to leave comments. It is just a shame that these comments don't often make it to the main paper. Old "Two Blogs" reminds me of the old joke Q: "How can you tell when Two Blogs is talking nonsense?" A: "Because his lips move"
Anyway, having established where is not a good place to find any answers out about the problems in Barnet, where would I look? Now if you are reading this, clearly you found me. Councillor Duncan MacDonald has quite http://cllrdmacdonald.blogspot.com/ which actually has interesting info on it. This just proves that some councillors care. I'm not a Lib Dem so I'm not saying this out of Party allegiance. There is also the blog put together by "Don't call me Dave" Miller - Barnet Council Watch. There is also a comment regarding the Icelandic Banks on Conservative Councillor Richard Weiders blog.
I've put a few other links on the side of the page for all the other stuff locally worth checking out. Please feel free to let me know if you are running a local blog or website and if I like it I'll try and list it.