Friday, 8 May 2009

Re-instate Margaret Haywood

Hi folks. I realise it’s been some time since I wrote any thing here. I could blame the pressures of modern life, relative fame and the demands of my adoring public ha ha ! ……but that wouldn’t be it really. Truth is I have been pre occupied with rehearsing and organising life so that there is more peace than angst. We have recently returned from Norway where we experienced more than our share of trials and tribulations. I do have the satisfaction of being able to say that none of our problems were as a result of the EB Bands failings. In fact we were the only organised part of it except for the last show which was superb. I don’t very often say so but the band is totally on it right now. Special thanks to Jan-Åge Johansen and all of the folk at Kabelvåg who made the last gig so memorable.
Some thing changing happens when we go above the Arctic circle and we become energised. The air is wonderful and the scenery breathtaking. Jan Johansen has invited me to go fishing with him on our next visit. Hey! I just wanna hole up there for a few years and be still and quiet. Well, maybe not quiet ha ha!
Mean while the EB B is appearing at the Friars 40th Anniversary gig on the 1st of June, The Assembly, Leamington Spa on the 7th of August and Woodstock Remembered festival on the 8th. Check out the gigs section on the site for details, as we get them.

Some years ago my partner was working in Lambeth for their Youth Service in the pioneering Lambeth Young Womens Project. Jack Straw was visiting in some official capacity. They had a discussion about lack of services. Jack immediately stated “ people should pay their poll tax”. She replied that she lived in Wandsworth and at that time there was a small charge there that she paid. Jack slunk off. It has come to light that he massively underpaid his community charge in recent times. Of course he has paid it back now. So that’s o.k. then Jack. The long list of sleazy expenses is growing every day.

Some years ago, while managing the technical operation on the wandsworth youth radio station Fundamental FM, I witnessed an interview between teenagers and Home Office Minister Paul Boateng. When asked by a youngster why young people drifted into crime he aggressively asserted “ young people don’t drift into crime , they make a choice to do so”. I was shocked at his arrogant lack of sensitivity and that a few smart young ‘uns could so easily get him on his back foot. He didn’t like the fact they suggested politicians alienated young people and lost votes. Three years ago the government paper Every Child Matters stated that steps must be taken to prevent young people “drifting into crime”. It seems that these people move the goal posts when it suits and as if it won’t be noticed.

Recently New Labour has shown us the truly dark and deceitful nature of UK politics. And worse they are totally out of touch with reality. Their lack of intervention in the case of whistle blower Margaret Haywood, the nurse who filmed the neglect of elderly patients for a BBC Panorama documentary is disappointing, given their insistence that Local Authorities and public service providers construct their own whistle blower policies. The government is obsessed with meaningless targets and driven by box ticking but they only like the outcomes that will bolster their Kafka-esque policies.
The treatment of Margaret Haywood is outrageous. She had gone through all the usual procedures to try to effect the change needed to ensure the issues around patient care were addressed but with out success. There are plenty of ways to protest at Margaret’s treatment so please participate.
On BBC’s Question time last night we had the uneasy experience of a top tory berating the Government for totalitarian policies and undermining civil liberties. It was only relatively recently that the UK signed up to the European Commission on Human Rights and again the Government has been told they have overstepped the mark on a civil liberties issue. This is about the governments decision to keep the DNA samples of people charged with a crime but found not guilty ( innocent ), for twelve years. The commision has agreed that Scotland’s policy of three years is appropriate. The insuation that New Labour is repressive and Draconian seems wholly justifiable. The tip of the iceburg I am afraid. Very disturbing indeed! I am certain that if this government is allowed to continue along their current path unchecked, then we shall all be very sorry we did nothing. It is clear that they will not easily allow meaningful / successful protest and that unidentifiable police officers in the Met, here in London will increasingly continue to act against the people because this is the culture of present day government. Still the worm will turn and it might not be too far off.

Brown promised a u turn in the affair of the Gurhkas but yesterday it was clear he must have forgotten to inform the relovent parties responsible for determining wether the old soldiers could reside here. What a buffoon!
Well I have got a few things off my chest. Do I feel better? No, I do not. This country is in serious decline and when I am fortunate to be else where as I was last weekend I feel shame and dismay at the state of these sorry isles.

So is that it? All doom and gloom? No of course not! There is always another side to the coin and yesterday I heard a lovely story about some ones efforts to unite an old lady with her son who she has not been able to visit for a long time. The mother is not well and coming to the end of her life. In her own words, to see her son is her last mission. I can not tell the details but the effort and resourcefulness required to make this happen is way beyond the call and mandate of the professionals involved. Still, they will achieve this if at all possible. There is hope within a good heart. Meaningful success will come from still trying when others give up among the shambles. I love them for their good hearts and wish them the best things in their lives.
So now I have to make some thing happen, to contribute a little some thing and play my part. So it goes. The good inspire and give strength. We need you all. Act now!


copyright e d g a r b r o u g h t o n 2009


Anonymous said...

Indeed!Welcome back.Lots to think about as ever.Every heart needs a home.Fostering a sense of community where everyone can make a contribution and be valued for who they uniquely are is so important.A sense of isolation and alienation can eat away at your soul.For me it all comes back to the speed and busy-ness of our lives.So easy to be wrapped up and distracted from the need that is all around us.Just a bit of time freely given to make a connection can make the world of difference to an individuals wellbeing.Reach out!

Anonymous said...

And as for all that twaddle going on in the mother of all parliaments...!
"I'm good,I'm honest,no one else is left.Will you vote for me?"....and like crazy idiots we did!Talk about Out Demons Out!
Time to mobilise.How much longer will we allow ourselves to be taken to the cleaners by our supposed betters.Elected representatives?Accountable to whom exactly?Do we truly get a say on the policies that shape this country?But then,perhaps,the people get what the people want because everyone is so busy looking after their own interests....
On a happier note,a fired up EBB doing some live gigs can only help spread a bit of truth and light where it is most needed.
We look forward with eager anticipation.

Anonymous said...

Just been on the Myspace site,first time for awhile and noticed the "In The Bloom" track.Wow,awesome song.A hit!Poptastic!
Incidently,when "All I Wanna Be" was released as a single back in the late '70s I remember listening to Alan Freeman's saturday rock show on Radio 1 and he gave a nice little intro about the band before playing the song and mentioning the then new album.This of course was nothing more than was deserved, but I was n't accustomed to hearing the band everyday on mainstream radio and nearly fell off my chair as I rushed to turn up the stereo and phone the mates.This is how it should be.More media exposure!I contacted umpteen radio stations before St.Georges day and said how about playing "April in England"....perfect for the day and one that everyone can hum!Even my dear old mum likes that one! Not one of them replied.This is not how it should be.A wider audience is out there.There is much they need to hear about.New material of such high quality as "In the Bloom" just cries out for radio play.
I'll keep quiet now!

Anonymous said...

Looks like Rob and Ade have got plenty off their chests here ! I understand, Rob, when you say that you feel no better for having your rant - all this stuff doesn't go away.
I heard David Mellor on the radio this morning. He was berating politicians for making a mint by playing the system for expenses. You know things are bad when David Mellor can take the high moral ground !
New Labour have eroded our civil liberties in a way which the nation would not have tolerated from a Tory government, I think. There has been a misguided trust that, as it calls itself 'Labour' then it must be doing it all in a good cause. It's taken a long time but people are beginning to wake up to the fact that we are now under a Big Brother state where you can now be arrested for photographing a policeman or a train.

Feeling no better after my rant but cheered at the fact I've got a ticket for the Aylesbury gig.

Anonymous said...

This system of government is bankrupt and morally busted. Time for change but what. Do we need a LABOUR PARTY? I'd vote for you Rob. Some one who would kick ass and has got some reliable standards.
keep rocking mate. Come on you Reds.