Saturday, 1 October 2011

Election Notes 2 - The Hitchhiker's Apology

But Mr Dent, the plans have been available in the local planning office for the last nine months."
"Oh yes, well as soon as I heard I went straight round to see them, yesterday afternoon. You hadn't exactly gone out of your way to call attention to them, had you? I mean, like actually telling anybody or anything."
"But the plans were on display ..."
"On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them."
"That's the display department."
"With a flashlight."
"Ah, well the lights had probably gone."
"So had the stairs."
"But look, you found the notice didn't you?"
"Yes," said Arthur, "yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying 'Beware of the Leopard'."

(Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams)

I was told that an apology for La Cloche had appeared in the JEP for their mistake over Roy Le Hérissier's mini-manifesto. So I looked!

It was tucked away on in a tiny notice on Page 30 of Wednesday night's JEP. That's really not the place to put an apology - half the readers never look at the Parish notices. How many people saw it? It's about as visible as the "plans on display" in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy! [And there is also no sheet of paper mentioning the mistake and giving Roy's mini manifesto inserted into any copies of the magazine available at the Parish hall, where I picked mine up - surely a simple and obvious matter to do.]

Technically, they have apologised, but that's a poor way to make an apology. A letter to the editor of the JEP, so it appeared in the letters page would have been better. I get the impression they are trying to hide their mistake.


Paroisse de St Sauveur
La Cloche Magazine
Edition 12

The editorial team of the Parish Magazine La Cloche would like In point out that an error occurred in the feature on the candidates in the forthcoming election for Deputies. Information supplied by Deputy Rob Duhamel was inadvertently repeated in the resume of Deputy Roy to Hérissier whose submission was unfortunately omitted. The error is regretted.

Also it is an "editorial team", no doubt so that the editor, Elaine Hanning, wife of the Constable Peter Hanning, does not get the blame. The editor's job (as I myself was told being guest editor of La Baguette) is to "sign off the magazine". In other words, the buck stops there! But there is more:

La Cloche is published quarterly at no cost to parishioners. The editorial team rely on the support of our advertisers to cover the costs of production and delivery is in the hands of our amazing team of volunteers.

The apology appeared as a Parish of St Saviour "Parish Notice". Does this mean that ratepayers money is being used to publish this feeble excuse for an apology? I think the ratepayers of St Saviour's should be told.

And there is a lot of political bias in La Cloche, for all it's avowed status to be "even handed" politically.

There are two pictures of the Constable, to one of Sadie, in the news stories. Three stories mention the Constable by name, there is one mention of Sadie. Jeremy Macon has his picture in twice; none of the other candidates do. And Peter Hanning's wife is described, in an article penned by herself, as "wife of the Constable", just so the reader makes the connection with the editorial team, Peter Hanning also mentions, in La Cloche, of helping set up the magazine as one of his achievements, so that the whole magazine appears as an endorsement of him as Constable.

Finally, they also have "special election rates" for candidates who want to place an advert in the magazine! That's been taken up by Hedi Green, Isabella Lewis and Peter Hanning, and the editor has rather carefully or carelessly placed the advert for Peter Hanning as Constable opposite the general "give the candidates an even space" area for Constable, so that on a double page, he appears twice, Sadie, the other contender, appears once.

And the magazine declares "no bias"!!

French dictionary definitions: cloche means: bell, also stupid, foolish.

From what I've read of the three candidates standing who advertise, if I had a vote there I would NOT use it for any of them.

Peter Hanning - will happily vote for GST

"GST I don't like GST and will happily vote against it when there is a viable alternative."

Translation: I will not ever vote for exemptions, as shown by my voting record.

Hedi Green - no mention of how she will vote on GST exemptions, so probably won't vote for them. Instead goes for vague platitudes:

"States expenditure is not under control yet we are all feeling the higher burden of taxes and the reduction in exemptions. The burden of taxation on middle earners is too high and in return we are not seeing good value."

Isabella Green - clearly will not vote for exemptions, "resist any further increases in GST" is the "Farm Fresh" way of saying it: She's not a genuine "Free Range" individual:

"Resist any further increases in GST. I am a wife, mother and grandmother. I know what a shopping basket costs; I will fight any further financial burdens on your household income"

Translation: the package says "Farm Fresh". Don't be confused with "Free Range". Says nothing about exemptions to GST, and don't expect a shopping basket with GST exempt items.

None of them will say "I won't vote for exemptions to GST", but they are slippery and don't say anything that will lose them votes! Would you vote for anyone so obviously devious?

But to be fair, I'll happily stand corrected if any of them want to make a bold statement that they will now vote for exemptions to GST on this blog. Don't hold your breath though!


Anonymous said...

I'm very disappointed in this revelation.
How can we help Roy? How can we make good publicity out of it to counter this (possibly deliberate error) on behalf of those bias people in St Sav Parish Hall? Well for one, I think this should be aired on Radio Jersey- could you do that please Tony? If I got on, I would probably swear and get plugged. Also can this be taken up with an electoral body?
(is it PPC?) and put through the proper channels and ensure they make a public announcement before the elections?
As well as that incompetent an bias St Saviour editorial team, Phillip Ozouf's twitter last night is clearly pro Charlie Goyette and anti Roy. Well, what a surprise.

Anonymous said...

Ozouf is behind Gouyet AND Hanning. He was behind the opposition when Roy first stood (Tom Binet) and have a look at the wall at Highstead and you will see the Ozouf + Hanning connection.
I find the staff at the Parish Hall most helpful they appear to be embarresed by their Constable although they won't actually confirm.

Anonymous said...

I'm not prepared to believe that the Cloche article was a deliberate error: simple error will do for me. I could come up with a wild conspiracy theory about the fact that Tony Scott-Warren, who does a regular piece (one of the three major contributors, the others being Daff Noel and Mrs Hanning) is actually Frank Walker's brother-in-law, but you'd rightly label me barking mad if I did!

I'm also reasonably sure that most people glance at the Cloche and drop it into paper recycling pretty quickly: if you aren't interested in either Parish in Bloom or Battle of Flowers it has little to recommend it.

On the bigger issue of candidates, the point about RLH is that he is a real politician who understands that there are big issues out there to deal with. He has the necessary understanding of Jersey's deeply flawed constitutional settlement. Mr Gouyet is a nice man, but he doesn't have any view of politics beyond the very, very parochial "fix the drains in Maufant" sort.

You can this immediately see why Ozo doesn't want RLH in the States - he is frightened of him. Mr Gouyet would be easy to manipulate.

Anonymous said...

Ozouf is behind Gouyet AND Hanning

That is interesting, because when Hanning's handbill dropped through my door the other day, it was delivered with a handbill for PB...

TonyTheProf said...

Simple error will do for me too.

But the decision to make a feeble small item apology for the mistake must have been deliberate. Probably so the mistake didn't rebound on the editor, the wife of the Constable, Peter Hanning.

Also the failure to put any extra page into the free copies still extant at the Parish Hall is again sloppy.

Anonymous said...

There is one other thought.

Had the Hannings pushed the JEP to put the apology somewhere more prominent, it might have drawn attention to the JEP's own (cough) fair and balanced (cough, cough) reporting of the electoral campaign...

Ex-Senator Stuart Syvret said...

I so hope Peter Hanning does not get re-elected.

He deserves to be resoundingly defeated.

If he gets back in it would - sadly - be further proof of my theorem of people getting the government they deserve.


Anonymous said...

Macon is in most likely because, unlike Duhammel, is always seen in the Parish.

Anonymous said...

In his latest blog post - hastily resuscitated thanks to Tony :) - Hanning says that he is:

"I am already out and about in the Parish, as I so often am, meeting people, listening to your views and sharing mine."


I have been writing, emailing and telephoning him for the last 5 and a half years because of a parish problem. In that time he has not so much as acknowledged that I have called let alone replied!

Even if my complaints were unjustified (which they are not), it is surely only common courtesy to acknowledge them and discuss them with me. No?

"...meeting people, listening to your views..."

Yeah right!

I will be voting for Sadie, without a shadow of a doubt.