Monday, May 09, 2011

It's Over - We Move On

An interesting week. There was an election, the sort that questions the validity of democracy. Perhaps my mood is tempered by thoughts prompted by Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. We have no real control, the populace is easily swayed, perhaps even stupid.

That stupidity is a collective action. The power exerted by the mob, or the emotion that rises up within you at a football match or pop concert. That emotion is outside, it's a reaction to the world out there. Compare it to the tears that spring when faced with internal emotions; the death of a relative or friend, the despair of failure.

So it was last Thursday. The election results could be sensed. There was no need for an announcement. We knew. For some election, for others quiet despair. It's trite and obvious to suggest that for the majority indifference was the best collective reaction.

What interests me is whether we have become so programmed into acceptance, that feeling of 'there's nothing we can do' and whether people do really care, or are just resigned to being powerless.

Perhaps I should accept that the collective will does bring about the right decision. That's difficult to accept. History suggests we are constantly struggling, usually making silly mistakes.

It makes me withdraw into a small shell. It's dark, unkempt, solitary, filled with quiet despair. From the outside it is ribbed, with shiny white bands of conformity that are separated by varying shades of brown that merge downwards to dark black. The public face that is me.

One day I may find a way to open up that shell. To invite someone in with whom I can share, admire and desire without feeling fearful that I will lose my last scrap of individuality.

There's a silent scream there.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Elections

Nearly over. We are an apathetic bunch. However low or high the turnout at today's election we will only scratch the surface of democracy - whatever that is.

A century or two ago we sent miscreants to the other side of the world. They formed a society, largely based upon burnt chicken wings and weak, yet cold, lager. They did accept Alternative Voting. Chances are we will throw it out of the window, but I suspect the other part of the Aussie system would produces better results: that is to make everyone vote and have AV. Sounds fine to me - I'd like to know if it works.

No chance of a BBQ here today. Wind has dropped, but it's getting colder. We need rain. My garden and allotment are suffering. That means I suffer (albeit silently - of course).

Feeling morose today. I've applied for £165,000-worth of grant funding so far this year - mostly in £15K lots and been turned down every time. We had a Board Meeting at the radio station this morning, and the lack of finance was a central topic.  I was also told there was a cartel who didn't like working with me.

Later, by chance, one director happened to mention that one member of this dissenting group who had been organising disco nights had never passed over the money raised.

It was at that point I made the connection. This bloke, and his cronies, have been using the good name of the radio station to encourage folks to attend events they arrange - and then pocketing the cash for themselves.

The Big Society in action!

Let's wait and see what will happen.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Spa Pavilion Felixstowe

Yes - I bought it back to life! www.spapavilion.co.uk www.spapavilion.co.uk

For one good reason - we want to do something with this theatre of ours.

The Suffolk Coastal District Council have turned down our Tender to look at what can be done with the theatre. That's Big Society in action.

Is it anger or sorrow I feel?

Monday, April 25, 2011

Just a few moans

Not been a good week.

We applied to Suffolk Coastal District Council for a small grant to keep the radio station going. It was refused.

We submitted a tender to Suffolk Coastal District Council for a contract to tell the council what to do with the Spa Pavilion, a 900-seat theatre on the seafront at Felixstowe. The 'we' were about 30 local people, all experts in their field. I had a little idea

You guessed that was turned down as well. It's easy to get paranoid but there is one councillor, she's been on the council for 38 years, who seems to dislike me. No doubt with good cause. I believe she should step aside, and let new blood onto the council. Instead she intends to be mayor again, this will be the fourth time.

On Easter Sunday seven years ago a part of British Rail, the part still owned by the people, sneakily knocked down our Beach Station. A wonderful old-fashioned station, which was only small but had 14 toilets to cater for the thousands of sun-seeking visitors to the beach at Felixstowe.

This town is becoming a wasteland as the council grant planning permission for dubious schemes, which allow demolition of fine old buildings, and the ground is not developed. , The Felixstowe South has not gone ahead.

Another big worry this week concerns the Bartlet Convalescent Home. Given to the people of east Suffolk in 1928 it was acquired by the new NHS in 1948 (seized might be a better description) together with sufficient funds 'to maintain it in perpetuity'.

The dying Suffolk NHS Trust want to convert it into luxury flats. The local community wants it back.

One week of the Big Society in action in a small seaside resort.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Belstead House

Join me in bashing a head against a brick wall. It could be yours or even my head that gets such treatment but I'd rather we were more selective. Let's look at local councils. Today I am incensed, so badly upset I'm not sure that I should even mention the cause of of dismay.

I am indescribably incensed.

Let's instead deal with another small case of stupidity. On the outskirts of Ipswich

Belstead House, Sprites Lane, Ipswich, IP8 3NA Tel: 01473 686321 http://www.belsteadhouse.co.uk/

Is a beautiful house used as a conference centre and residential courses. It's a great place, well-loved and well-used but unfortunately it is owned by Suffolk County Council.

Yes, we spend £218,000 a year on our CEO, who spends more of our money an hour than students pay for an instructional and enjoyable residential full-board weekend. 

Compare the two: what would rather have?

I cannot understand why local council officers can receive such salaries.

Furthermore I see no reason why we should sell off a wonderful resource that we have bought, paid for and maintained for many years. A centre that brings so much pleasure to so many people.

It is a disgrace. There's a petition you can sign - but don't be surprised it it's ignored:



Sunday, April 17, 2011

Lesley Howard & Winston Churchill

I've been poncing around with radio stations for the past few years, at the (great) expense of my little book publishing site: www.braiswick.com.

Interest was sparked off for me this morning when I heard that a national newspaper (one doesn't like to encourage them so I'll not add their name) has 'discovered' evidence that the Portuguese aircraft shot down in 1943, which killed the Hungarian-born actor Lesley Howard, was just a random gesture, and had not been targetted because Churchill was on board.

Their 'evidence' came from a report of the questioning of a captured Luftwaffe pilot.

It may not have been correct. Ken Ward, a German Jew who escaped to Britain nine days before the start of the war in 1939 (I published his biography 'And Then The Music Stopped Playing: http://www.braiswick.com/?p=57 - a great story) died in 2010.

His widow, Joyce, has asked me to publish a collection of his short stories, which will be published very soon.

In one tale he meets two school friends from his childhood in Frankfurt, after 70 years apart.

One friend talked of his Squadron Leader Hans von Stassen, with whom he was very friendly, who had been a very successful Messerschmidt pilot, with many kills to his name, who was called into his Commander’s office at the end of May 1943. Two high-ranking SS officers were there, one of them direct from the Wolffs Schanze, the F├╝hrers headquarters in Russia.

This officer addressed him, “Von Stassen, you are very honoured to have been selected for a very special job. Under no circumstances will you discuss your orders with any one, either now, or when your mission has been completed. Is that understood?"

He said there would be a civilian airline plane leaving Lisbon at 9.15 pm on the 1st June, turning north towards Britain. One of the passengers would be Winston Churchill, because he has been clearly identified by one of our best intelligence officers. Von Stassen was told to shoot down the plane.

Which he did.

If you have read this blog you have just heard about a world exclusive. Buy Ken Ward's book of short stories, and make me and his widow, Joyce, both rich and happy.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Diary 20 March

Bit late this post, but I'd forgotten it was there. As it's about the elections it may be useful.

Little chat on 20 March 2011


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Thoughts for Lent

It's clear that the world is trying to change. What's happening is not right.

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Do listen to Jan Candy: http://www.eastcoastradio.co.uk/archives/296


Trevor Lockwood: Diary 27 March 2011

Trevor Lockwood: Diary 27 March 2011

Diary 27 March 2011

Here's a new start. Since my last entry I've started an FM radio station and planning to create more but such progress brings restrictions. It means I can't always express my feelings openly. The station is not solely mine, and so I've returned to this blog - an old favourite - where I hope to bring a little action, to make folk think.

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Let's make a start - it is easier to talk than write: 


Saturday, November 15, 2008

You thought I'd gone

Well I had. This is the rebirth.

Too much happening to waste upon tittle-tattle.

The world's in a state of economic collapse. I told them all it would happen, ages ago, but they didn't listen.

Growth and greed will not work. An economic system that relies upon borrowing money to make money helps no-one but bankers. We've seen how they became greedier, and overstretched themselves.

A farmer plants seeds, and gets huge rewards, but only if he a) has seed in the first place b) makes sure the plants can grow properly c) harvests at the right time d) saves seed for the next year.

Growth is a slow process. We've created a world where second-tier financiers make no real contribution but reap all the profits. It's a nonsense.

A company issues shares: each valued at $1. It gets a $1 when the shares are sold.

From that moment speculators move in. The shares fluctuate, up and down. Either way the financial gamblers can win. The company gains nothing more.

The con trick is that a company with high share value will attract more investors, and have the ability to borrow more money.

It's immoral.