Fw: The Week ending 7 May 2000
grinker at SPAMmweb.co.za
Sun May 7 09:16:23 MDT 2000
This might interest some people on the list...
The Week ending 7 May 2000
MILLBANK'S REVENGE ON LONDON
When Londoner's snubbed New Labour and elected independent Ken
Livingstone (below), party officials at Millbank Tower took revenge by
re-directing funds out of the capital, and out of the new Mayor's hands.
MAY DAY WITHOUT WORKERS
On May Day, anarchists and environmentalists fought with police in
London and Zurich, while Fascists and Anti-Fascists clashed in Hamburg
and Berlin. The international workers' day was noticeable for the
absence of workers, as middle class concerns dominated.
AN EXCLUSIVE LITTLE ELECTION IN LONDON
Just 1,714,162 of the five million plus eligible London voters went to
the polls on 4 May, and gave independent mayoral candidate Ken
Livingstone a landslide victory of 58 per cent. The upset to the
political system was dramatic. Tony Blair's drive to devolve power to
regional assemblies created the London Mayor, only for the Labour rebel
Ken to snatch it away from the official candidate, Frank Dobson, who
came a poor third with just 223,884 votes.
The defining feature of the election was the shrinking sphere of public
interest in government, local or national. Local elections have often
fallen below 50 per cent, but the new mayoral contest engaged just 33.5
per cent of the electorate.
SO WHAT NOW FOR TRANSPORT?
Ken Livingstone has pledged all along that he will reject the
government's Public Private Partnership (PPP) financing plans for the
Underground in favour of a New York-style bond issue. His campaign has
been given added poignancy by his anti-Big Business stance around the
Paddington rail crash, criticising business' lack of concern for the
public good. Ken's dilemma is that unfettered capitalism may be worse
than Hitler but with limited powers, how can the mayor make the trains
run on time, writes Austin Williams.
Read the Week at www.heartfield.demon.co.uk/week.htm
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