A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Council by-election results

In the middle of the Hain resignation there were two council by-election polling days yesterday. The Sandwell result puts the national picture in perspective and ought to cheer up Labour activists:

Sandwell MBC, Newton Ward - Labour gain from Lib Dem. Tom Watson tells me this ward has been Lib Dem since 1980!
Lab 36.9% +2.6%
Lib Dem 35.4% -6.9%
Con 25.7% +2.3%
Green 2.0% +2.0%

Basingstoke & Deane DC, Baughurst Ward - Lib Dem gain from Con on a 40% turnout. Huge swing of about 20% Con to LD. Labour did not contest this seat. The loss of this seat means the council goes from Tory to No Overall Control.


Anonymous Rich said...

Nationally though Labour are losing even more ground to the conservatives. New data suggests that more Labour voters have turned to the conservatives.

Wait until next week to find out but from what I'm being told it's shocking

9:52 am, January 25, 2008

Blogger Zokko said...

Labour are not losing ground to the Tories. Cameron has yet to snatch a single seat from Labour. Don't be so cocky my friend.

11:05 am, January 25, 2008

Anonymous Shackers said...

Luke sorry this is off subject but Hackney Council have made the front page news in the Wall Street Journal. Not very good news mind you. I think Jules should nip this in the bud before it gets out of hand


Sorry not sure how to do a link here but you can copt the baove into the address tool bar

11:18 am, January 25, 2008

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Strange because when I go to Ridley Road market none of the traders use metric - they all sell by a unique unit of measurement, the plastic or metal bowl, the contents of which are pegged at fruit or veg to the value of £1.

11:34 am, January 25, 2008

Anonymous jdc said...

Plastic and metal bowls aren't metric either, so they're all falling foul of the law unless they then weigh them for the formal transaction.

I imagine they've just picked this one to make an example of for some reason.

Personally I continue to believe that if I agree to buy x quantity of apples from you for y pounds, the job of the law is to ensure;

* That they are in fact apples
* That I in fact get x quantity
* That I in fact give you y pounds

And not a lot else.

12:28 pm, January 25, 2008

Anonymous a pound or two of flesh said...

But also, that you are in fact getting the weight you have paid for. Rogue traders have been known to fix their scales or even just not calibrate them properly, I used to work at a co-op and we would check our scales every month or so - they get a lot of use in a busy shop and easily become innacurate over time and ne resetting.

The question then is - can you expect the local authority to police both sets of units? Or any other random unit of measurement that a trader dreams up.

Really, I don't understand what all the fuss is about. We have had 30 years to get used to this. As a thirty something myself I feel slightly aggrieved that I was educated completely with the metric system but then once tossed out into the big wide world I had to ask for my luncheon meat in ounces so as not to confuse the oldies.

2:09 pm, January 25, 2008

Anonymous jdc said...

"The question then is - can you expect the local authority to police both sets of units? Or any other random unit of measurement that a trader dreams up"

I should say so. You can police it in metric fairly easily as long as you have a calculator.

Anyway there's a supply and demand issue here - do we believe in free markets or not? If a trader insisted on selling by the qedet and demanding payment in florins then they probably wouldn't do much business.

I'm a thirty something, and when I want to make instant rice for my packed lunch, and the recipe just says 300ml, and all I have to measure with is a cup, I have to start doing some swift mental arithmetic so I can visualise that as just over half a pint.

We're taking quite enough stick banning things that should rightly be banned (hunting small animals, smoking in enclosed public spaces, texting and driving) without pushing this nonsense of prosecuting little old ladies who are doing nothing more harmful than buying and selling your five a day.

2:36 pm, January 25, 2008


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