Monday, 4 March 2013


We wrote last week about the idea of appointing a youth council for Boston along with the possibility of having a Young Mayor for the borough.
Reaction from readers was mixed – and on balance not wildly enthusiastic.
Perhaps it echoes the general malaise that seems to be percolating through politics at present.
As an example, one Boston Eye reader wrote to tell us of a meeting he attended at the Red Lion Inn at Stickford last Thursday. It was organised by East Lindsey District Councillor Victoria Ayling, with Bostonians especially in mind to discuss the European Union.
Interestingly, the meeting was held on the day of the Eastleigh by-election, which saw UKIP crush the Tories into third place, and the Lib Dems cling on despite all their current problems.
Our correspondent told us: “I'm just a 45 year old (reluctantly middle aged?) working chap who lives in a little terraced house, surrounded by other little terraced houses with (in the main) big satellite dishes on 'em.
“I'd like to think politically aware, but absolutely no party political affiliations or loyalties.
“To be honest, at this point in time you couldn't (if it could be bought) pay me to vote for Simmonds or Kenny, or actually any of the three main parties. Such is the high regard they've all managed to engender.”
But when he set off for last week’s meeting, we imagine that he anticipated the possibility of a reasonable gathering to debate the issues.
“The idea was that feedback would be given to Mark Simmonds on local views.
"Yes, yes, I know he's pro-Europe, pro-migration, completely useless and never here, but that's beside the point.
The attendance: the four of us, plus a couple of local fishermen and a couple of retired builders who'd gone in for a game of cards.
 “Nobody, absolutely nobody, from the usually extremely vocal Boston Protest March group could be bothered.
“I know some might blame the remote location, but in fairness, Councillor Ayling represents a rural, not a town ward, so naturally hosted her meeting within her area.
“If this is the level of interest in something that affects us all daily, how could those who remotely rule us from their political ivory towers arrive at any other conclusion but "the plebs are ok with it."
“More people could have made an effort.
“The good news was all attendees 100% agreed that Europe is a pretty bad idea and we didn't want to be in it.
“Even if she doesn't need my vote, Councillor Ayling goes up a half-notch in my estimation just by holding a face-to-face meeting on this topic.
“The idea of one of our 'representatives' being available to converse with, was just too novel to pass up.
“It makes a refreshing change from the rest of them, cowering as they do in the Municipal Buildings, just occasionally breaking cover for the odd Standard interview between elections.”
Councillor Ayling must surely have been disappointed.
Ahead of the meeting, she said that she had been bombarded with calls and emails from people with concerns and suggestions about Britain’s relationship with Europe.
“There have been concerns about how much the EU costs, while others have suggestions on how we can get Europe to work better for us,” she said.
“Also with Boston hitting the headlines recently due to the numbers of immigrants settling as a result of our membership of the European Union, Europe is very relevant to our community.”
Sadly, though, when push comes to shove, Bostonians – not for the first time – simply can’t be bothered.
Indifference such as that must be very satisfying for the so called “leadership” of Boston Borough Council.
Doubtless, they applaud the idea of wholesale indifference in the hope that it will see a rubber stamped return to office at the 2015 local elections.
But that’s still more than two years away.
What the proposal for a Young Mayor for Boston has achieved is to rekindle the debate over an elected mayor for the borough.
Another reader told Boston Eye: “A young mayor for Boston is not the right thing. The problem it causes is that there will be a young mayor and an old mayor – and no one who is middle-aged, working and in touch with both scales of the ages.
What Boston really needs is an elected mayor who is in touch with all people of Boston, and mostly importantly voted in for the people to represent them."
In the past, this idea has been scoffed at, but give the growing contempt in which our leaders - who are appointed by their own cronies – appear to hold the people who put them in power, it would not take much to put the idea to the vote.
All it needs is for 2,417 people to call for a referendum on the idea and one will have to take place.
Surely enough people have had their fill of the bully boys (and girls) in blue to being such a thing about?
“Science may have found a cure for most evils; but it has found no remedy for the worst of them all -- the apathy of human beings.”  ― Helen Keller.

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