The Bluh Lectures: February 3rd 2010 – ‘Cynicism & Democracy’

It looks like the ‘Lecture form the leader’ is set to become an annual event so we might be looking at a ‘collectible’.  Then again, probably not.

Cutting straight through the inevitable lines of wadding….

…Rod, hooking his metaphorical thumbs into imaginary waistcoat pockets, and gazing statesmanlike into the near distance says:

“In this age of cynicism I hope that this taste of democracy and representation will inspire those who participate to retain their interest.  Being a politician, whether in the council or in Westminster is not easy, but the danger is that unless people vote and stand for election we will sleep-walk into a dictatorship. If anyone doubts how bad that can be just look at the fate of democracy protesters in China, Burma and Iran.”

We don’t need to go that far Roderick,  Euclid Street is just round the corner and, whichever way you look at it, the vast majority of Swindon voters cannot exercise any influence at all on whether Roderick Bluh could, or even should become a ward councillor, let alone becoming the leader of the council.  In 2009 the decision to appoint Rod Bluh as leader of the council was made by just 43 Tory councillors.

Once installed upon the throne, the leader proceeded to take unilateral decisions, (which are increasingly kept deliberately hidden from the rest of the council), which affect every one of Swindons 180,000 inhabitants…..

….and yet he, Roderick Bluh presumes to lecture us on the dangers of sleepwalking into dictatorship?  Swindon already has a working model of an elected dictatorship and the dictator is simultaneously waxing lyrical about the electorate becoming more interested and involved in politics whilst doing everything he can to prevent the electorate from scrutinising his decisions, questioning his actions and holding his executive to account.  This man is shaping up to be a political hypocrite of the worst kind.


Rod gets a bit lazy in his lecturing style now, it’s obvious he’s cutting and pasting from the Christmas Speech he delivered to the party faithful:

“The borough is still continuing to attract good quality acts to perform locally in the wake of the highly successful Radio One Big weekend last May.”

Bearing in mind that ‘Radio Rod’s Big-Spend Weekend’ cost the taxpayer around £700,000 I think the accuracy of Bluh’s ‘Highly Successful’ claim depends entirely on your viewpoint.  700k is a lot of money to spend on a two-day jolly for Councillors and their mates, but I’d like to hear what the Swindon Blogoshpere’s musical cognoscenti think of this.  Has the Big Weekend significantly enhanced Swindon’s attractiveness to concert promoters?  How many concerts have been held in Lydiard Park since the Big Weekend and how many more concerts than usual have been held at the Oasis Leisure centre?

That’s it from me on this ‘Bluh Lecture’.  There’s no mention of ‘the other things’ Rod and the gang of four, (the micro-cabinet), have successfully ‘delivered’:  annual rises in council tax, the demolition of the town centre, non-erection of replacement buildings, cuts,  library closures, playing fields built on, hefty budget deficit, assets sold off, employees wages slashed, redundancies etc…..

…although it does have to be said that Bluh’s one massive success, (for him personally and the Tory Group generally), has been his stewardship of a system of political patronage which gives him centralised, political control of all the ‘Chairs’ of the major committees at Swindon Borough Council.  This, and the various ways he ‘flexes’ his political muscles to get his own way has earned him the local title of ‘Rodigarch’

Posted on
Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010
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