In the end only five new election leaflets have gone on line today, one
of those sent to me was a duplicate. Four are from the Tories
and one from UKIP. Click those links for
an Index to all currently available from those parties.
Election leaflets are where you can see the English language stretched right up to the point of being a lie, but generally it stops just short of that. One of the Conservative leaflets appears to claim that Bexley is good at ‘Safeguarding children’ but before you shout ‘OFSTED’ and ‘it’s a lie’, take another look and you realise they are only claiming safeguarding children to be one of their responsibilities without saying whether their performance is good or bad. But they do claim to be No. 1 for recycling; funnily enough, so does Bromley.
Closer to being a lie is the boast that Bexley Tories have kept council tax low when the truth is that they have kept it relatively high and slowly getting worse by comparison with other London boroughs. “Lowest parking charges in the area” is another lie. Just to pluck one example from many, in Petts Wood (Bromley) the charge is 40 pence an hour, in similar sized Northumberland Heath, Bexley charges twice as much. Tories have the cheek to claim credit for Crossrail coming to the borough boundary and for the improvement made to the historic Crossness pumping station.
The Conservatives are going to campaign for a reduction in the number of councillors; exactly the same promise as they made four years ago.
Smearing other parties is a well known tactic. Labour councillors are said to be planning to reintroduce the Thames Gateway Bridge when no one has suggested such a thing. The Gallions Bridge that is possibly being considered in County Hall is a great deal less ambitious.
I’ve not found Labour’s literature to be particularly inspiring. An hour’s free parking and fighting cuts to libraries and community centres. No other promises I considered significant and if you had ever seen how Teresa O’Neill tramples down any dissenting voice, Labour’s or yours, you’d realise that the need for a more evenly balanced council is becoming desperate.
UKIP have a few original ideas, one is to provide a limited number of free collections for large items of ‘rubbish’. Bexley charges thirty quid an item at the moment which encourages fly tipping. There’s a roll of carpet on Knee Hill at the moment if anyone is interested.
I thought it was ingenious for UKIP to claim that Bexley has “the worst council tax record in London” when it is not actually bottom of the list. 24th out of 32 boroughs. But it’s not a lie, it’s clever use of the English language again. Bexley does have the worst taxation record in London, it has fallen 21 places in the League Table in 20 years. No other borough has got anywhere near to that abysmal record.
No sign of BNP, Lib Dem or Green literature anywhere.