The Unorthodox Website Blog

Rather unusual evening

10
Jun

After enjoying the glorious mini-heatwave at my favorite swimming pond up Hampstead this afternoon, I came in and the phone rang. It was Andrew, the medium who channels Diana. Then Diana herself came on the phone.

We chatted for an hour or two, it’s not everyday you get the opportunity to chat, well listen mainly, to a dead princess, ask her questions, get answers, and all as easily as talking to your friend on the phone. I did withhold my mobile phone number from Andrew and Diana, explaining that I didn’t want to be overheard on a bus or train talking to the former Princess of Wales in case they locked me away.

But in the privacy of my own home, I was quite happy to listen to Diana, and Andrew, reading out some of the channeled messages, letters, etc. from their websites, and I also chatted to Andrew about his life, and mine. I asked Diana several questions, and she answered them.

I later discovered short messages from both of them on my answering service, including a phone number to ring back, but they rang me soon after I got in.

Diana was telling me how good The Queen is at her job. Being a republican, which I told Diana early on in the conversation, I didn’t know what to say. So I just said that Monarchy is a lottery, you might get a good Head of State or a bad one, and if you got one you didn’t like what could you do but try to force them to abdicate, like they did with the Duke of Windsor? I also said it was unfair on the royals themselves to have this job thrust on them whether they wanted it or not.

I said it was very restricting and she agreed of course, having experienced this herself. Oh there’s wealth and privilege, but what about a private life? I said to Diana, suppose an heir to the throne was gay and wanted to enter into a civil partnership, well it just wouldn’t be allowed, and she agreed.

She didn’t think the Monarchy would last long, if at all, after the present Head of State dies, and she will never abdicate. No doubt she is good at ‘her job’, but is it the right job would be my question. I have no objection whatsoever to any of the Windsor family becoming Head of State, so long as they stand for election and gain a majority over any rival candidates. It is a peculiar system that works well in many other countries, called democracy.

It works well for the public, and for the people who are up for election. Everyone has a choice in the matter - they can choose whether they wish to stand, and we can choose whether we want them as Head of State.

The trouble with being a figurehead, without real political power, is that you are expected to stay out of politics. As soon as you get involved, you are in trouble, as Diana found out, even when she was no longer a royal. So if The Queen decided she was NOT going to launch a new Trident nuclear submarine because she didn’t agree with it, or one of the princes decided he would not join the military as expected, all Hell would break loose, the Monarchy would be rocked. It seems it is a very shaky edifice indeed, if a guy having a boyfriend or a woman thinking it is a bad idea to launch a ship which could cause a nuclear holocaust are things which could bring the whole institution down. Better to do away with it altogether.

You can’t have a non-political Head of State, it’s as simple as that. They have to represent their country and do political things, and the Monarchy, The Queen, is political. She stands always for the status quo, whatever that is at any given time.

At least an elected Head of State would presumably be elected on policies, so would not be forced to do things he or she did not agree with, and nobody would worry if he or she had a partner of the opposite sex, the same sex, or no partner at all. There is no need for them to produce an ‘heir’. And at anytime, they can announce their resignation.

I didn’t discuss all this with Diana, but am willing to do so if she wishes to. It was a most interesting conversation, and I hope the world gets to hear her posthumous voice more and more. Many have heard it on the internet via the sites given in my previous messages, and she has also broadcast posthumously on an Australian radio station.

I hope she gets the chance, with Andrew her channeler, to appear on British TV. Surely one station of the many now available will be willing to invite him and Diana on for an interview so the viewing public can judge for themselves?

Diana really does speak!

09
Jun

Rose Campbell has explained that Diana’s voice comes thru stronger, and sounding more like her, the more Andrew Russell-Davis becomes a channeler for her. This explains the variations in voice with podcasts and some of the earlier YouTube clips.

As to the messages I was receiving about ‘deceit, trickery, sleight of hand’ I now believe these referred to the so-called ‘accident’, cover-up and Inquest. I think I also understand a reference to someone connected with these events appearing to be ‘mentally challenged’. I cannot elaborate further, people must make up their own minds. Suffice to say they did no favors to their cause.

I am now being told from the world of Spirit that the Diana Speaks messages are for real, and have just sent this email to Rose Campbell, Andrew Russell-Davis and Diana. Please read their comments posted to the two blogs below this one.

Dear Rose, Andrew and Diana,

Something very strange/sinister is going on here! I have only just read Diana’s comments in my Inbox as I’ve been out all day enjoying the unexpected sunshine with my mother. When I look at the Weblog I can’t find the Comments. So someone has deleted them yet again, but it certainly wasn’t me. It appears the Spam filter connected to the site automatically deleted these comments, but why? Rose’s comments weren’t similarly ’spammed’ or ‘censored’.

I think this is the convincing proof I have sought, and which George, my life-partner on the Other Side has just a few minutes ago told me I have now received.

Seems there are powers at work here of which we know little, as someone very high up, (now who could that have been?) once said to Paul Burrell. They wouldn’t try to censor us if they weren’t getting worried! If ‘they’ are worried, it must be real! I’d already come to that conclusion anyway, but as George says this is the ‘convincing proof’.

I am posting this message on my site as my ‘blog’ for today. The Diana messages are real! It is time the world knew about them.

Tony

Reply from Diana medium Rose Campbell

08
Jun

See below (comments to my June 7th blog) for Rose Campbell’s comments, in reply to my previous weblogs and a comment I put on one of Rose’s sites asking directly if the Diana Speaks messages were all a hoax. Rose has gone some way to dispelling my doubts.

We must get to the bottom of this, and find out if it really is Diana speaking thru people like Rose and Andrew Russell-Davis.

As I said, I was myself getting messages from the Other Side throwing doubt on the genuine nature of these Diana Speaks messages. Perhaps I was meant to be Devil’s Advocate. At any rate, all reasonable doubt must be dispelled, all questions such as mine answered, before Diana, if it is her, can be successfully launched on to the world’s media.

I invite Andrew, and Diana herself if it is indeed her, to comment via this weblog. Any proof they can give that it is indeed her would be most welcome.

Meanwhile, I’m grateful to Rose Campbell for her prompt response, and for the explanations she has given for the voice differentials in Andrew’s YouTube appearances and the podcasts. I am not yet completely convinced, but keep an open mind.

I certainly want to believe it is Diana. She was, I believe, ‘bumped off’ by the British Establishment who felt she was too much of a nuisance. She shook the British Monarchy to its roots, an institution I should like to see toppled, and took up issues close to my heart such as landmines and the treatment of AIDS patients.

We must at present keep open minds, and if Andrew/Diana are to be invited to appear on TV then everything must be right, and completely convincing. Andrew, if he is genuine, is embarking on a very dangerous mission. They silenced Diana when alive, if this really is her speaking, we must not let them silence her again. That would be very difficult, as she is now able to speak thru many different spiritual mediums thruout the world.

The various so-called ’Christian’ Inquisitions tried to kill them all off in the Middle Ages, but they failed. They can’t silence all the world’s mediums now either.

‘Diana’ messages - fake?

07
Jun

I today received further warnings, channeled from the Other Side, that these messages may be quote a ’sleight of hand’ by a mentally challenged person. This would, perhaps, give a motive - a desire for fame and recognition.

So I’m afraid we must be very wary. However, I have to also consider the possibility that mischievous entities on the Other Side could be responsible for making these allegations of trickery. They often come thru via ouija boards, which incidentally is NOT the method I use.

All we can do is judge for ourselves based on the content of the ‘Diana’ messages. I reserve my judgment at present, but obviously am a bit doubtful as to their authenticity. Some of the YouTube videos of Andrew Russell-Davis ‘channeling Diana’ sound nothing like her to me, but the Rose Campbell interviews ‘via Andrew Russell-Davis’ do. This makes me wonder exactly what is going on here.

The Alf Pritchett one has apparently been around longer. Whether fake or real, it certainly has a certain charm about it  and is also worth a listen.

Direct Voice Mediumship - Princess Diana & Alf Pritchett

06
Jun

Direct Voice Mediumship is a remarkable phenomenum, whereby the spirits of dead people allegedly speak, via the medium’s own voicebox, but using their own voice.

Obviously there are opportunities for fraud in all forms of mediumship, and I have never witnessed Direct Voice Mediumship personally. However I have listened to recordings via the Internet, and some I was told about last night are quite remarkable. To me they sound absolutely genuine, not least because the people who put them there are not making money out of it. 

Nevertheless we must be cautious before accepting these messages as being from Diana. They seem just too good to be true. There are videos on YouTube of Diana apparently speaking thru her main channeler, Andrew Russell-Davis, and it is disconcerting to say the least. It sounds much more convincing when you can’t see the man sitting there speaking in Diana’s voice, in fact I didn’t recognize it as Diana’s voice at first, yet it was instantly recognizable on the audio versions. This may well be because our visual perception affects what we hear. So the content of the messages is all important, especially if they contain accurate information Andrew Russell-Davis could not have known. It may take time for this to be proven one way or the other.

I have to say here that I too have various methods of channeling important messages from the Other Side, and in this case they include warnings about trickery, deception and a partnership in crime, but also reassurances about the ability to act for, or portray, another person straightforwardly and honestly. 

These messages are ambiguous as they could be taken to mean Diana is really speaking thru her channeler about, among other things, a partnership in crime which resulted in her fatal ‘accident’ and the trickery and deception which has gone to cover it up, or they could be referring to the messages themselves being a conspiracy between several mediums. But if they are, it is difficult to see a motive, since all they have attracted so far is ridicule and abuse for Andrew Russell-Davis, and the messages and book allegedly channeled by Diana are available free via the Internet, so there is no monetary motive. 

One site gives a series of some 42 interviews with the spirit of Princess Diana, in which she talks about her life, her children, Charles and what happened in Paris that fateful day. To me it sounds like Diana and how she spoke (judging from the Panorama interview).  I’ve only listened to 7 of the interviews so far. Including her worries about youth violence in UK (the recent stabbings, etc.) and uncontrolled immigration. She suggests some possible ways to deal with the current spate of youth violence/gang culture.

She defends Charles, saying he is a good father to William and Harry, and gives her approval to his marriage to Camilla, saying she knew before she and Charles were even married that he loved Camilla, but hoped he’d grow to love her, Diana. She admits not being a saintly ’Mother Teresa’ type person, but very manipulative and not averse to telling ‘white lies’ when it suited her. Indeed her main channeler, Andrew Russell-Davis, has called Diana ‘a bitch’ on air.

Why not judge for yourself?: http://www.archive.org/details/DianaSpeaks

There is also an opportunity to comment/debate, and read a book apparently dictated to medium Andrew Russell-Davies by Diana in the months after her death on the following website: http://www.dianaspeaks.com/

The other Direct Voice Message, via Direct Voice Medium Leslie Flint in 1960, allegedly is the voice of Alf Pritchett, a poorly educated British soldier who died in World War I. This too is utterly believable to me, and quite humorous at times as Alf describes his confusion on discovering he is dead but still alive. For instance he describes how people still living couldn’t see him, and that if he came back to visit his wife and other relatives and friends, even the local vicar would be ‘as blind as a bat’ and not be able to see him. Only senstives (mediums) have this ability.

To hear Alf’s interesting message, in which he rants at the Church and generals, etc. for sending young men to war, blessing them and their guns, etc. click (you might have to right click and Save Target As…) on this link and download:  Listen to Alf’s fascinating account. (41 minutes).

I am grateful to Australian-based lawyer, Victor J. Zammit, for providing links to these sites/downloads via his fascinating weekly After Life Report, with Victor’s following reservation about the ‘Diana’ messages: ‘My position, as most of you know, is to present the taped evidence and will leave it entirely up to you to decide whether it is really Diana who is speaking.’
 

50 Years On - Lewis Still Rocks UK!

28
May

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Jerry Lee outside Westbury Hotel, May 1958 (click on picture to enlarge)

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Fans outside Westbury Hotel, May 2008 (click on picture to enlarge)

50 years ago last weekend, Jerry Lee Lewis arrived in the UK for his first concert tour. Elvis had gone into the U.S. Army, Jerry Lee was all set to grab his crown as the new King of Rock’n'Roll, already he had two huge million sellers with ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On’ and ‘Great Balls of Fire’. Unfortunately the tour was aborted after just 3 concerts in London, due to the cultural differences between the UK and the Southern States at the time, and the fact that the British Establishment hated this American ‘rock’n'roll’ and were looking for a place to stick the knife in.

When Jerry got back to America, the Establishment over there, who were also trying to kill off rock’n'roll, used the bad publicity in the British press to ban his records from the radio. They had soon silenced four of the biggest names in rock’n'roll - apart from Jerry Lee’s ban, Elvis had been drafted into the U.S. Army, Little Richard had turned to the church and given up singing rock’n'roll, and Chuck Berry was to be incarcerated for transporting a minor across a State line. When Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper, Ritchie Valens and a year later Eddie Cochran were killed in tragic accidents, and Gene Vincent and Carl Perkins had also been badly injured in car crashes, the way was open for ‘a flock of Bobbies’ as Jerry Lee put it - acceptable, clean-cut all-American boys singing nice pop music - to be presented to the public as ‘rock’n'roll’. The nasty stuff, and its performers, were silenced for good, or so they thought.

But 50 years on it is STILL going strong. Elvis may be dead, but Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Chuck Berry and others are still rocking. Younger generations have taken up the music, and perform it, and after returning to the UK Top Ten in 1961 Jerry had an endless stream of No.1 and Top Twenty Country hits in America in the next 3 decades, culminating in 2006 with his biggest selling album ever, which shot into the Top Ten of 5 record charts, reaching #1 Indie on Billboard. It has sold over half a million copies world-wide, and Jerry Lee appeared on every major U.S. chat show promoting it.

He is scheduled to do another European tour later this year, and they are lining up at least one concert in London where he first performed 50 years ago.

To celebrate the fact that Jerry Lee is still rocking, still performing, and still recording and selling albums, British Jerry Lee fans met up at the Westbury Hotel where Jerry stayed 50 years ago, then moved on to a nearby pub to continue the celebrations.

The next day, Jerry Lee’s sister, Linda Gail Lewis, gave a marathon performance, including many of her brother’s songs, in front of a packed audience of Jerry’s fans and others in North London.

50 years ago Britain was shaken up when Lewis and his family arrived on our shores for the first time, and 50 years later they are still shaking things up over here, with rock’n'roll, the music they tried to crush 50 years ago!

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Tony with Fay Coffey at celebrations of 1958 tour, May 2008

(click on picture to enlarge)

Sonny Burgess Rocks Hemsby

21
May

Sonny Burgess, with two of the original Pacers - Bobby Crafford on drums and Kern Kennedy on keyboards - did a brilliant set on Saturday, backed up by Wayne of the Houserockers on double bass (some Comets style acrobatics) and another British musician (forget his name) on trumpet and tenor sax.

A mixture of hard driving rock’n'roll and Country, with a couple of Elvis numbers thrown in, this performance made the whole weekend worthwhile for me. One of the best gigs I’ve seen in some time. They describe Sonny as ‘rockabilly’, but this was pure rock’n'roll at its best. Sonny’s guitar was in tune (Chuck Berry are you reading this?) and was fantastic, as was Kern’s keyboard work, and indeed the guy on the horns.

Bobby Crafford is also no mean singer, and took lead vocals on a couple of numbers, including the slowie ‘Matilda’ which Jerry has recorded. I was going crazy at the front of the stage - oh yes, Bobby Crafford did his version of Clarence ‘Frogman’ Henry’s ‘Ain’t Got No Home’, imitating the frogman’s sounds. I then realized this is almost exactly the same as Burgess’ ‘Aint Got A Thing’ which they’d performed a few numbers before, so we had two chances to sing along to the chorus - ‘Wo-oo-o-o’. Great stuff! Sonny really is one of the great rockers, even if he does look as if he’s about to sell you a bucket of KFC nuggets when he comes on stage looking more like the late Colonel Sanders.

Dale Hawkins, on remission from leukemia, was a bit disappointing for me, mainly because of his choice of material, but of course he did his biggest hit ‘Susie Q’.

We also had a great rockin’ Mississippi-style boat trip on the Norfolk Broads (inland waterways) with DJ Wildcat Pete spinning the wax/CDs and some ‘live’ music from the Lonesome Valley Boys, Levi Dexter, Dave ‘Reverend’ Brown and others.

By the way, as some American rockabilly star commented at a previous Hemsby, ‘riding the Broads’ has a completely different meaning in USA.

Early Summer

12
May

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Mixed bathing pond - click on picture to enlarge

We are having an exceptionally hot early May, with temperatures in London reaching 27 degrees celsius, which I believe is 80 degrees or over in real ‘old money’ temperatures.

Quite often we have sunny days at the beginning of May (though never as hot as it is currently), and not to put a damper on things, it is then usually gray skies and rain all the way thru, way past mid-Summer’s day, until the days start closing in.

Last year we didn’t get a Summer at all - just a few sunny days here and there. The more usual pattern after some sunny weather in April and early May, is for the weather to wait till the outdoor swimming places open for the Summer in mid-May, and then for the weather to turn relatively cold, gray and rainy right thru till July. If we’re lucky, July, August and early September see some good weather.

The outdoor swimming places close by mid-September, so an Indian Summer is often on the cards, meaning as soon as swimming is off the agenda the weather hots up considerably.

This year, due to public pressure, the Serpentine Lido was opened at least a month early, and I took advantage of it yesterday, and got my first swim of 2008. Today I’m going up to Hampstead Mixed Pond, which opens the middle of May. So it may be open, it may not. The men’s and women’s ponds stay open all year, but the mixed pond is my favorite. It is very picturesque.

I have no knowledge of the women’s pond, but the men’s pond is a notorious gay cruising area, and even though I’m gay I have no wish to be cruised by a load of boring old fogeys like myself, and younger time-wasters, when I’m sunbathing, swimming and trying to listen to my music on an old-fashioned Walkman cassette player, or a portable CD player (stuff your MP3 players - it’s taken me 44 years to make up the tapes and I’m quite happy with them!)

Also, at the men’s pond you have the choice of sunbathing, nude or otherwise, in a concrete yard surrounded by corrugated iron walls which has absolutely nil appeal, or sitting on the grass with a load of silly queens at the back of the swimming pond. Either way, it is a fair bet, if you’re on your own, that sooner or later someone will run off with all your clothes, money, Freedom pass, shoes, etc. and you’ll be left to walk home shoeless and naked apart from your wet swimming trunks.

Clearly the men’s pond is not designed for swimmers, just for posers and gay cruisers, since there is nowhere to leave your clothes where the lifeguards or you yourself can keep your eye on them while you’re swimming. At the mixed pond you can see the sunbathing area from the pond.

But really, since they now expect ‘donations’ for the privilege of swimming in these ponds, they should supply some lockers to put your clothes in. These would generate more income than the ‘donation’ ticket machine.

That’s it, I’m off on the Overground from Clapham Junction, via Willesden Junction, to Hampstead Heath. Get that swimming pond open, Terry (the senior lifeguard at Hampstead), I’m on my way!

P.S. Next day. The mixed pond now opens from the beginning of May till the end of September, so giving us an extra 4 weeks’ Summer swimming, and catching any early/late Summer sun. Yesterday was crowded up there, though at 62 degrees Fahrenheit the water was surprisingly cold still. Today I’m taking my mother up there to sit in the shade while I have a swim.

I’m off to Great Yarmouth for a rock’n'roll weekend on Friday, staying right near the beach, and we’re hiring a boat on the Norfolk Broads on Sunday. Guess what - the weather turns colder and wet by then according to the forecasts.

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Mixed bathing pond - click on picture to enlarge

Mayor Johnson takes over

03
May

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For the second time in his two careers as leader of London, Ken Livingstone has been kicked out of office largely due to the voters in the outer London suburbs.

However, this time it doesn’t leave such a bad taste in the mouth as when the voters of the London Borough of Bromley and other Conservative boroughs on the edge of London managed to achieve the abolition of the GLC, of which Ken Livingstone was the leader.

This time the London Assembly at City Hall, and the office of London Mayor, continue, with Conservative Boris Johnson at the helm as the new Mayor.

He deserves a chance to prove himself capable of the high level of responsibility now put on his shoulders. Most people see him as a buffoon, but on the other hand he is certainly an extrovert personality and something of a political maverick frequently out-of-control of his Party, much like Ken Livingstone was. Indeed Livingstone was first elected to the office of London Mayor eight years ago as an independent, in opposition to the Labour candidate for the post. He’d been kicked out of the Labour Party, and was only re-admitted due to his great popularity with Londoners. London seems to go for these extrovert, maverick characters, and it is good because they are likely to put London first and foremost, rather than strictly follow the instructions of their Party headquarters.

It is a shame that, having helped win the 2012 Olympics for London, Ken Livingstone should now be denied the chance to host the Games as Mayor. But if he decides to stand again in four years time there’s still a chance he could be Mayor at the time of the London Olympics in August 2012.

Boris Johnson will either make a good job of being London Mayor, or he’ll make a complete mess of it, in which case he may well damage the Tories’ chance of getting re-elected into government in 2010. Either way, we may eventually benefit from his victory in the 2008 Mayorial contest.

Both Ken and Boris gave good speeches following the result, Boris praising Ken for his years as the first London Mayor, and Ken saying he must take the blame for not getting re-elected. This was probably too hard on Ken - it was actually a combination of factors. 

Tory voters in places like Bromley, where they were lining up outside polling stations to vote Ken out of office. Bromley and similar Outer London boroughs don’t feel part of the capital city, and never have done. They feel they are part of the rural Home Counties surrounding London, and this is reflected by their outdated postal addresses which they refuse to give up - a form of snobbery, insisting they are still located in counties like Kent, Surrey, Hertfordshire and Essex, when in fact they are suburbs of the metropolis. London Boroughs coming under the auspices of City Hall.

Another factor was 11 years of an unpopular Labour government which took us into an illegal war in Iraq, and which has allowed knife/gun crime and gang warfare to take over whole areas of cities, and removed real policemen from the streets, creating no-go areas. And which has allowed Britain to be swamped by economic immigrants from Eastern Europe and elsewhere, working for very low wages, jumping social housing queues and putting British people out of jobs.

Gordon Brown has been even worse as Prime Minister than Tony Blair. Brown needs to be ditched pronto if Labour stands any chance of winning the next General Election, and New Labour ditched with him. Tony Benn said on TV following the election of Boris Johnson, that New Labour was, in fact, a different political party to Labour, and that he’d never joined this New Labour Party. He is right - we want old Labour back, the one which had some principles and wasn’t just the Tory Party mark 2 with a PM who is a poodle of American foreign policy. This unprincipled New Labour Party which has ruled Britain for over a decade, bowing to every whim of American foreign policy, undoubtedly lost Labour Mayor Ken Livingstone many votes. He might have done better if he were still an independent.

The third reason Boris replace Ken as Mayor was the vicious campaign by the London Evening Standard, London’s only newspaper (not counting the free give-away ones), which daily plastered London with billboards accusing Mayor Livingstone of all sorts of sleaze. This must have had an effect on Londoners who saw these billboards, even if they never read the newspaper.

But despite all this, Ken Livingstone increased his vote by some 200,000 on the last London Mayorial contest 4 years ago. He only got pipped to the post by 140,000 votes, in a contest where both Ken and Boris got over 1,000,000 votes each. Whichever way you look at it, it was a close result. A 140,000 majority in a city of 7 or 8 million is not a high percentage at all.

This brings us to the third candidate, Brian Paddick, the Liberal-Democrat contender, and previously an ‘out’ gay policeman. He was also a very capable candidate, but due to the nature of our voting system, was never going to stand a chance of being elected London Mayor. He got many second preference votes, including my own.

In fact, nationally in the local council elections, the Liberal-Democrats got a higher percentage of the vote than Labour, which means the Lib-Dems should have got more councillors elected. This wasn’t the case, due to our unfair voting system.

Ken can now have a well deserved rest from office as Mayor, but let’s hope all at City Hall can work together in the interests of this great city which is now the host for the next Olympic Games. Boris Johnson must be given the support he needs to carry out his new responsibilities as, like it or not, he has now been elected Mayor of London for the next four years.

Will he go ahead with his crazy plan to phase out bendy-buses and bring back a new version of the Routemaster with conductors? We’ll have to wait and see. I can’t see this is practical myself, except possibly as a gimmicky tourist attraction on the two Central London routes which still operate some of these buses - purely for tourists. In this age of Freedom Passes, free travel for under 18s and Oyster cards/Travel cards, conductors would have little to do on buses. Inspectors could more efficiently do the job of making sure everybody on bendy-buses and other forms of public transport have valid tickets for their journeys.

I think a few years in office as Mayor of London could be the making, or breaking, of Boris Johnson. He has the maverick qualities which might surprise us all, and make him a good Mayor for the city leading up to the 2012 Olympics.

London elections

30
Apr

Yes, I know there are local elections thruout England and Wales, but as a Londoner I realize we have a fight on our hands to keep Ken Livingstone as Mayor of the capital city.

I don’t usually vote New Labour since they became, in effect, the New Tories under the leadership of Tony ‘Thatcherite’ Blair, and his successor Gordon Brown is a complete disaster. But Ken Livingstone has been a great politician for many years, first as leader of the former GLC, and later as the first Mayor of London.

So I shall be voting for Ken as Mayor again, with gay ex-policeman and Liberal Democrat Brian Paddick as my second choice.

For the two Assembly members I’ve decided to vote Liberal Democrat again, as the left-of-center party most likely to win seats. Note, I no longer regard New Labour as ‘left-of-center’ and haven’t done for years, with a few exceptions such as Ken Livingstone, Tony Benn and Dennis Skinner.

Tomorrow is May Day, when I well remember Labour Party members marching along waving red flags. Till this flag is raised high and proud over Labour Party headquarters, with true Socialists in command again, I will not vote Labour unless there is an outstanding and principled leftwing candidate like Ken Livingstone standing. 

I hope Red Ken gets in again. He deserves to be Mayor when the 2012 Olympics come to London. We need to press ahead with plans to charge gas-guzzlers £25 a day to come into Central London, and we certainly need more police on the streets and more opportunities for youngsters. The Olympics will pump a lot of money into the East End, and provide sports facilities for youngsters all over London.

I certainly don’t want that buffoon Boris Johnson as Mayor, introducing completely impractical Routemasters with conductors back into the capital. They are inaccessible to wheelchairs and people who are disabled or with heavy luggage/shopping, and the conductors reduce standees to just 5. What is the conductor supposed to do anyway, when nearly all fares are now pre-paid, and the young and elderly enjoy free travel?

What is needed are more inspectors to discourage fare dodging and ensure buses run on time, and driving standards, etc. are up to scratch.

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