There are 2 sorts of change.
One of them involves a real alteration – such as buying a new shirt.
The other involves gong back to what you did before – such as changing a shirt for one you wore a week ago.
In B&NES Council, leadership has switched back and forth between the Lib Dems and the Conservatives every 4 years.
Up until 2015, the Lib Dems were the controlling party. So when they present themselves as a new broom, offering change for the better, they are assuming that we – the electorate – have very short memories. Everything that they are promising to do from May 2019, could have been done between 2011 and 2015; and there was more money to spend then.
The Lib Dems don’t offer real change; they are the other side of the coin that was flipped a few years ago.
BIG is different.
There is no track record to judge us by. We have no history of failure or promises that are conveniently forgotten when the election is over, and reality kicks in. We are an unknown quantity.
Which is why we are proposing policies that will help the whole community AND we are also committed to behaving differently to the major political parties.
I’ve never met anyone – apart from politicians – who think that slagging off the opposition is clever or a vote-winner; yet it is what political parties do over and over again.
I’ve never met anyone – apart from the most diehard party supporter – who believes that promises which are made before an election carry any weight; especially when they are phrased so vaguely that they could mean anything – or nothing. Yet that is what political parties do over and over again.
BIG offers 2 main differences:
We will behave differently. We are not interested in point-scoring, name calling or one-upmanship. We think decisions should be made on the basis of the best evidence available, and that there is talent in every part of B&NES which can made use of when decisions are being taken (a recent example would be on the issue of the Clean Air Zone).
We have a list of major policy areas, within which we aim to achieve success both in the short and the long term. We won’t offer to do things that are not within our control; and we will admit when we have fallen short.
A FINAL THOUGHT:
If you want real change, the best thing is to put yourself forward as a candidate. You may say you don’t know anything about politics OR you don’t understand what’s involved OR you don’t have the time.
BUT remember that most existing councilors started out in the same position. And do we really want a Council full of elderly/middle-aged white men whose opinions were formed in the last millennium?
Your Council really does need YOU.
Article by Philip Raby, Nominating Officer for Bath and North East Somerset Independent Group.