Easy To Criticise?
It was a warm Cabinet meeting at the New Forest District Council today, with most of the conservative Councillors keen for the usual rubber stamping exercise to proceed rapidly in order that they could get away for more popular summer activities.
Of course, I wasn’t prepared to allow that to happen.
As Leader of the opposition, the burden rests on my shoulders for making sure that there is an appropriate degree of challenge and accountability taking place.
At one point, a Tory Councillor, exasperated by a point of disagreement I was making said “It’s easy to criticise”.
I responded by telling her that… in fact… it’s very difficult to criticise.
I am normally on my own, in a Chamber full of Conservatives, who are mostly intent on rubbishing most of what I say.
Even in situations where I am obviously right and everyone else is wrong, it is still a tough job arguing the case to a very hostile and unreceptive audience.
I invited them to try doing what I do on a regular basis.
I think that if they were to try, they wouldn’t conclude that “criticism is easy”.
Some of them may get a chance to find this out after the elections next May.
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I must admit to a slight sinking feeling whenever the thick file of papers known as the Agenda and reports for the next District Council planning committee fall on my doormat.
The District Council formally decided to adopt new powers that will enable them to levy fines at the registered owners of vehicles, if any litter is thrown out, whether by the driver or a passenger.