It must be April, the cruelest month, again. I know this because my letterbox (in meatspace) is getting cluttered with the glossy “vote for Meeeeeee” crap again.
And here’s a fact of life: in most of the 32 wards of Manchester City Council (three councillors per ward), they don’t count the votes for the Labour party, they weigh them. Labour could dig up the corpse of Augusto Pinochet, stick a red rosette on it and trundle it around on an electric scooter and that corpse would romp home. Such are the joys and certainties of first-past-the-post when civil society is under the thumb/trotter.
So, comparing manifestos is manifestly a waste of time. Why do it now then? Purely for the shits and giggles.
Let’s go back to 2016, since, you know, these things take time, and you can’t blame a party for not instantly implementing its promises, especially when it only controlled [checks notes] 96 of the 96 seats on the Council..
Did any of that happen?
Oh do keep up.
And grok this from page 9 here.
And carbon literacy? You really haven’t been paying attention, have you?
So this year,2019. Well, doubtless there are some doughty green lefties within the Labour party, fighting the good fight, willing to be sentenced to twenty years of boredom for trying to change the system from within. Presumably they did lots of work about actual policies/projects How are they doing? Did they get the word “emergency” in there? Or the word “divestment”? Here’s page 9 of the Manifesto.
So, um, no. The same vague boilerplate and soundbites that they’ve been doing for the last ten years plus, while kneecapping anything at all that they might not be able to control, that might complicate the “Manchester is a nice place for international capital” strategy. Nice to throw in the Tyndall Centre as a fig-leaf. I wonder if the Tyndallers are happy with that? Somebody should ask them.
As for “demand the Council is given all necessary resources…” That’s getting the ‘blaming central government’ thing going. Which would be fine, if on principle they didn’t take credit for the partial decarbonisation of the national grid, which makes Manchester’s emissions reductions look far healthier than they are…
It doesn’t matter. Labour will romp home. They will have 94 seats, or possibly be down to 93, out of a 96 seat council. They will control the scrutiny committees, all the other committees. And they will continue to absorb, co-opt and generally be the same as they have been for the last (at least) ten years, until and unless a constellation of factors – some international, some national and the majority local, force them to change. So it goes, as the species hurls itself towards an entirely possible and possibly still avoidable extinction.
NB While you set about dismissing this as partisan hackery or something, this: The editor of Manchester Climate Monthly and author of this piece is not now and never has been a member of ANY political party (not Greens, the Blues, the Reds, the Trotbots, none of ’em). Nor is he a card-carrying XRer or anything else. Just a concerned citizen. Or a despairing one. Or a terrified one. Whatevs.