Mike lane | 15.06.2003 11:38
The people who live in neighbourhoods, which have been chosen for regeneration, are oblivious to the fact that they are being manipulated and oppressed. George Orwell spoke eloquently about the British people’s mentality, especially the working class, in his book “the Lion and the Unicorn.” He said:
“Circus dogs jump when the trainer cracks his whip, but the really well trained dog is the one that turns his somersault when there is no whip and that is the state that we have reached in this country thanks to three hundred years of living together without a civil war.”
Of course I don’t advocate a civil war, I am not a loony leftist, but why is it that we poor working class people can not see or understand what is happening to us? Why is it that we fail to see that it is just a hand full of people who perpetuate the present miserable state of affairs? Is it because we feel that the system is beyond our control?
If you take a close look at local government you will see that there is only a hand full of people at the top, such as, the council leader, the chief executive of the council, four or five senior executive council officers, two or three senior government office civil servant, a couple of elitist civil servants in the chamber of commerce and the development agencies, and a few multi-millionaire businessmen and property developers. In effect there are only about fifty or sixty people in a city as big as Liverpool pulling all the strings and oppressing 475,000 people. Incredible isn’t it? Just fifty or sixty people perpetuating the undemocratic state of affairs that exists. What do we do? We make excuses for what they do and go along with every thing they say. I refer to these fifty or sixty elitists as the dominant culture at local government level.
We the working class have been indoctrinated from child hood up to adapt to what these people advocate. Installed in our subconscious mind is an inexplicable fear of that which does not exist, an illusion that convinces us that there is nothing we can do and that it is for our own good that these people make decisions on our behalf. Then we have the problem of the community cronies, who I refer to as the gatekeepers. These people act as overseers for the dominant culture. These are the people from your community who you see sitting at the top table alongside the dominant culture, these are the people who shout down the genuine community activists at your meetings. We have a guy here in the Kensington NDC who argues with and shouts at the chief executive at meeting, but when you see the two of them after the meetings they are best of mates, laughing and joking as they converse with each other. What sinister motive lays behind this spectacle no one knows, but it has become quite apparent to most genuine people within are community, and I’m referring to people who really care about the community as a whole, that there are some despicable people living amongst us and within our immediate midst. Lets take for instance the homeowner who wrote a letter of complaint about me and forced the citizens panel that I was involved with to vote to have me excluded from the panel (only five people voted and these panels have now ceased to exist anyway). Shortly after I was booted off the panel the regeneration administrators gave this same guy a job.
The administrators have now become quite brazen in the undemocratic way in which they operate. They are quite secure in the knowledge that the community will do nothing. They and the community cronies or sub oppressors of the administrative oppressors know that the community does not care and has lost its sense of civic responsibility. These people use the neighbourhood’s apathy and parochialism as further tools to subjugate the community and to impose their agenda onto the unsuspecting community.