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Issue 7 - May/June 1998
DOUBLE VICTORY ISSUE!!!

WE WIN THE ELECTION

Pork-Bolter ..... 69.8% All the rest ..... 30.2%

OUR campaign for the 1998 Worthing Borough Council elections has proved a total success! Fellow citizens boycotted the meaningless farce in their thousands, notching up a vast majority for a vote of no confidence in the borough council. Our advice to Vote for Nobody has struck home. So while the Lib Dems celebrated clinging on to power, the Tories celebrated winning a few extra seats and Labour celebrated an increased vote, NOBODY was the real winner and NOBODY has real cause to celebrate. The only surprise for us was that anyone bothered voting at all. After a year of New Labour's smarmy con-merchant regime, new confirmation has been given to the old adage that whoever you vote for, the government always gets back in. The same is true of the council. Who cares which "party" is supposedly in power when year after year it's the same smug old council and the same smug old faces behind the scenes making all the real decisions?


... and we're proved right on CCTV!

I SPY A BIG CRIME RISE

"CCTV cameras fail to cut crime" - this was the telling headline in the Worthing Herald on April 23, St George's Day. Papers from the Sussex Police Authority had revealed: "The system at Worthing is now in the second year of operation and there is little to demonstrate any significant crime reduction effect." On the contrary, crime in the CCTV area went up by 19%! Surprise, surprise, we were right all along! While the sheep-like politicians at the Town Hall have been bleating on about the benefits of living in a prison camp, we have never fallen for this massive con-trick. Even if the spy cameras set up all over our town had achieved some small decrease in petty crime, we would not consider it worth the loss of freedom and quality of life that they inflict.
The fact that crime has not decreased at all over the last two years means there is NO EXCUSE AT ALL for these nightmarish tyrannical devices to be imposed on the people of this town. Because that is all that the "reducing crime" argument ever was - a pathetic excuse for spying on and intimidating ordinary people - all regarded as potential criminals and subversives by the Big Brother state. To "celebrate" two years of CCTV in Worthing, we will be holding a BIG BROTHER'S BIRTHDAY happening at the new South Street pedestrian area (near Lloyds Bank) on Saturday June 27, 12 noon til 1pm. All welcome!


PORKY PIE'S TIP OF THE MONTH

How to get a Cheap Wedding Video:
  1. Get married (if you must)
  2. Go down to Worthing town centre
  3. Wait to get noticed by the CCTV daleks
  4. Nip down the town hall and offer them a few quid for a copy of the video
  5. If everyone did this, the council wouldn't have to flog off all its council houses to pay off its huge debts!

STITCH-UP ON THE DOWNS

DUBIOUS behind-the-scenes manipulations look like scuppering a bid to protect the beautiful South Downs. This was the message to emerge from a meeting staged by Friends of the Earth at the Richmond Room in Stoke Abbott Road, Worthing on Tuesday May 5. Countryside lovers, including ramblers and environmentalists, have been trying to persuade the Government to give the South Downs the National Park status they should have won in 1947. The whole "consultation" process has been dogged with controversy, with the public's views overlooked in favour of the vested interests of businessmen and the agricultural industry. As is typical in "democratic" Britain, the crucial decision was made by a Quango consisting of ten unelected individuals selected by the Government. NONE of these members of the Countryside Commission visited the South Downs during the consultation period or attended ANY meetings to hear Sussex people's views. And yet they still felt they had the right to recommend to the Government that the South Downs should not be made a National Park.
One speaker, Amanda Nobbs of the South Downs Campaign Group, explained how the Commission had effectively misrepresented the response from the few members of the public who knew they were supposed to be writing in. She said the Commission had been "extremely mischievous" in the way it presented the consultation, had used "extremely curious and dubious ways of grouping the answers" and had been "economical with the truth" about the reasons for not recommending the National Park option, despite it being favoured by the public. In other words, the whole process was carried on in the way that all these window-dressing "consultation" schemes always have been and always will be carried on in a corrupt and centralised state like the UK!
The big cop-out from the Commission is that it says the South Downs can remain an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and enjoy similar protection to a National Park. But this is obviously not true - otherwise why not make the public happy and actually make it a National Park? One member of the audience pointed out the Tory MP Howard Flight certainly seemed aware of the crucial difference. He was on record as supporting AONB-only status because a National Park would upset what people like him always call the "balance" between conservation and economic growth (ie: building all over the countryside). And another questioner pointed out that a certain Twyford Down was - and still is - an AONB and this hadn't stopped a motorway being built all over it. AONBs are "as much use as a chocolate frying-pan" he suggested. Perhaps chocolate frying-pans are the ideal cooking vessel for the preparation of succulent profitable new road-building schemes?

BOTTOMS UP, BOTTOMLEY

SPIFFING news that our old chum Peter Bottomley, popular and thrusting Tory MP for West Worthing, has been elected a director of Appian Traffic Technologies Ltd, which is apparently a subsidiary of National Avionics. And intriguing to hear from the Herald that the firm is "involved in assisting motorists wishing to find spaces in car parks" by the use of electronic message signs. Obviously Mr Bottomley is quite free to take up any directorships he wishes and it would be ludicrous to suggest that there was any conflict of interest with his much-vaunted desire to reduce traffic or to ponder over how a real reduction in traffic on our roads would affect this firm's profits. We say three cheers to public-spirited Mr Bottomley!

LORD YOUNG FOR MAYOR

HOW good to see that fine old character Lord Young of Graffham playing a prominent role on the local political scene. As chairman of West Sussex Economic Forum he has been lobbying the Government on the popular local business cause of building a motorway of Cissbury Ring and also opened the new South Street pedestrian area. Lord Young, you may recall, was made a peer by Mrs Thatcher so that he could become an unelected member of her cabinet in 1984 and was Secretary of State for Trade and Industry from 1987 to 1989 before becoming chairman of Cable and Wireless from 1990 to 1995. This is the sort of man Worthing needs and we suggest that a plaque or two around the town is not enough to honour him. We demand he immediately be given the freedom of the town, a borough council pencil case and, to end all this bickering about David Chapman, be appointed Unelected Mayor of Worthing. If he's good enough for Mrs Thatcher, he's good enough for our fine council.

PORK SCRATCHINGS

WORTHING council is getting worried that council hose tenants won't vote for its beloved privatisation scheme after all. A tetchy exchange of letters in the local press reveals that people are at last starting to see through all the one-sided hype the Town Hall has been churning out to back its case. Latest offering is a newsletter from "independent" advisers (paid for by the council) Aldbourne Associates, who explained that the scheme is proposed by the council "because they believe tenants will be better off than if they remain Council tenants". Funny, we thought it was so WBC could raise cash to pay off debts! And if the council really does believe that, it hasn't been reading its won papers, in which it has admitted that there will be rent rises under privatisation - so tenants will be worse off!

PORK SCRATCHINGS

WE have now received a reply from Sussex Police in our campaign to help Freemasons "come out of the closet", which we will hopefully have space to print in next month's issue, together with further correspondence from Michael Ball, chief executive of Worthing council, on the same issue.
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FRIENDS of the Earth are encouraging Worthing residents to organise Community Street Parties for their neighbourhoods during Green Transport Week, June 13-21. The idea behind the event is that car culture isolates people and leads to the breakdown of local communities, with the obvious far-reaching social implications. FOE have already secured the support of the council and Neighbourhood Watch, and are urging people to go ahead and organise something in their road. If you want help or ideas, or can get involved generally, contact worthingfoe@radicalfluff.demon.co.uk.
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JUNE sees a global day of action against McDonald's, to mark the anniversary of the McLibel trial, and pickets of the Montague Place store are due to take place on Saturday June 20. Meanwhile, you can judge for yourself the facts of the case with a cd-rom of the trial and website (http://www.mcspotlight.org), including all 313 days of court transcripts, 140 witness statements, 21 interviews, 500 press articles and loads of other stuff. And all for a £7 donation (to McLibel Support Campaign) from BM McSpotlight, London, WC1N 3XX.
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PORK ON THE WILD SIDE The Pork-Bolter is a totally independent newsletter which has no time for any of the political parties, along with 69.8% of the people of Worthing. Our name comes from an ancient nickname for Worthing people dating back to its fishing village days, with rather obscure and unsavoury origins that would put you off your dinner. Free from this information, the newsletter can safely be enjoyed with any meal, light snack or beverage. If you want to make sure of getting a copy of issue 8, simply send us a stamped, self-addressed envelope. To get the next six issues send a donation of at least £2. Please think about making it a bit more if you really want to help us. If you couldn't give a shit, don't bother. Copies of issues 1-6 also available. Cheques/postal orders made payable to The Pork-Bolter. email subscriptions also available. Drop us a line: porkbolter@eco-action.org or PO Box 4144, Worthing, West Sussex, BN14 7NZ. website: http://www.eco-action.org/porkbolter
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OFFICIAL WARNING BIG BROTHER is a highly respected member of the Worthing community who has, over the years, made a key contribution to the economic prosperity of the region. While he has no objection in principle to loyal subjects celebrating his birthday on June 27 (see 'big crime rise') he wishes to point out that employing any degree of sarcasm or irony in so doing constitutes an offence under the Criminal Injustice Act and can lead to imprisonment and torture.
and finally ... ISN'T IT ABOUT TIME YOU STOOD UP TO BE COUNTED?