Saturday, 23 August 2008

In the scheme of it, is Chinagate important?

If I had a pound for every time a customer asked me "are you busy tonight". If you've ever done it, don't be embarrassed, its the ice breaker for your conversation with the driver. I am truly in a privileged position as a taxi driver, talking is a big a part of the job as driving. Most of the time the conversation subject is chosen by the customer, thus giving a true insight to which current affairs are more important to them at any given time. Given the huge range of people who use taxi's (age,gender,class and race), surely the taxi customer would be a useful barometer for current affairs.
If you collected a random sample of posts by Thanet blogger's over the last few months, you could be forgiven for believing that Chinagate is a somewhat important issue for local people. However the proposed business park in Manston appears not to be important (to taxi customers), apart from the growing amount of restaurants appearing and the Olympics, the Chinese are not flavour of the month.
So you may wonder (or not), what is flavour of the month? Well at the moment national issues are prevalent, price increases and the credit crunch fill most conversations during the drive across Thanet. With gas and electric price's increasing by approximately 30% over the last 9 months, you can see the genuine concern on some oap's faces, as they talk about wearing an extra cardigan this winter, because they cannot afford to heat their homes properly. The families who have already seen their shopping budgets slashed by mortgage increases, also see the contents of their baskets shrink due to grocery price increases. These are the talked about issues currently and appear to be more of a major concern than Chinagate.
It could be argued that Thanet bloggers should concentrate on local issues like Chinagate , as the national media gives extensive coverage to issues like the credit crunch. Whilst understanding that most blogs are a personal account of the bloggers life and thoughts, some blogs in Thanet appear to be in a popularity contest using promoted issues, which in reality is a thinly veiled disguise at council/councillor bashing. However these bloggers risk alienating their readers by promoting issues like Chinagate, ahead of issues that the reader considers to be more important.
Sad:- News tonight (Saturday) about a serious stabbing near Manston riding school. The victim a male in his mid 40's was assisted by a fellow cab driver, until the emergency services arrived.
Funny:- Sunday Peering over a Garden fence in Park rd, Broadstairs (because nobody answered the bell), to be confronted with the sight of a large hairy naked male cooking on the BBQ (I hope the food didn't spit hot fat).


derick97 said...

welcome to the world of blogging

Anonymous said...

And why shouldn't bloggers bash the council? They're crap!

Anonymous said...

I don't think TD was suggesting that bloggers should not bash the council. He was saying (rightly in my view) that this is some bloggers' real motive and that they guise their bloggae as neutral when they are no such thing.

But of all the bloggers (who are not councillors presenting their own spin) who actually engages with process to test their points of view ?

Michael Child and Rick.

Michael over protecting the safety of water supply re Manston developments and about safety of plans for seafront development (ven calculating load bearing capability of access road arches)

Rick with a submission to the Rosemary Nelson inquiry (now classified as Judicial Tribunal response only) and with a current complaint report awaiting consideration by the Kent Police Authority Standards Board.

It is easy to anaonymously challenge a councillor "Tell this blogger why I should not report you to Standards Board for England". The difficult bit (too difficult it seems for ECR) is to identify yourself and make the complaint. Otherwise that blogger is just, albeit amusing and well articulated, hot air.

Michael Child said...

Yep welcome to the world of blogging, as for council bashing, I pretty much try to confine myself to issues of public safety, like poisoned water supply or emergency escapes from the Pleasurama development, if I thought anything I said would help with the current economic situation I would give it a go.

Anyway I have added you to the feeds on my sidebar and look forward to further posts.

Matt B said...

I am definitly with Michael in that I too am looking forward to returning to this blog. It's nice to have a fresh perspective.

Rear view mirror said...

Many thanks for my first comments.

I can say hand on heart that I have only recently started looking at blogs, and then decided that I would like to have a bash, As such the observations I made were genuine and there was no hidden agenda. I may be majorly mistaken, but nothing recently I have seen on some sites has made me change my views.

Michael your views appear genuine and I appreciate you would rather comment on local historical matters. However I will write about my thoughts on any issue, regardless whether I feel it will lead to change or not. We must always consider that national issues invariably lead to local issues, so we ignore them at our peril.

Heres hoping I havn't upset too many bloggers. I cannot seem to join the Thanet blog list, so if anybody can help????? Thanks