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So Boris is running for Mayor of London.

Discussion in 'CycleChat Cafe' started by Andy in Sig, 16 Jul 2007.

  1. Andy in Sig

    Andy in Sig Vice President in Exile

    I just spotted the fact on MSN that Boris Johnson is running for the office of Mayor of London. On the one hand it's a nice idea but I really had him down for boss of the UN as he would be the perfect chap to sort out Johnny Foreigner. Perhaps there's something else he could do. Isn't he half American? Perhaps he could run for President of that particular cultural cul de sac. Any other ideas for his future?
     
  2. SamNichols

    SamNichols New Member

    Location:
    Colne, Lancs
    Due to my previous work, and his work as the conservative spokesman for Higher Education, I have crossed paths with him for a couple of times, and ended up in a pub with him the first time (he didn't buy the drinks, despite the fact that I was with a couple of students, and he's paid a fair whack). He is sharp as a tack - his TV persona is merely a put on to make people think badly of him.
    He worries me a great deal, as I believe the public conception of him is somewhat different to the politics underneath it all. Ken Livingstone, has in my opinion, done a good job as the Mayor of London (except for the Tube repair), and it would be a shame to lose him just because a 'personality' is standing against him.
     
  3. bonj2

    bonj2 Guest

    he's a cyclist, which Ken isn't. So you lot should all be better off.
     
  4. Brock

    Brock Senior Member

    Location:
    Kent
    Yeah! I'd vote Boris for mayor, he's flipping great, and a cycler of sorts. Mind you, I don't live in London so it wouldn't really effect me.
    Boris for Mayor!!
     
  5. Dayvo

    Dayvo Just passin' through

    Location:
    O' slO'
    He's also great at dealing with Germans!

    For the umpteenth time :eek:

     
  6. Keith Oates

    Keith Oates Janner

    Location:
    Penarth, Wales
    I'm not a fan of Livingston, but to be fair he hasn't done a bad job!!!!!!!
     
  7. Andy in Sig

    Andy in Sig Vice President in Exile

    I once fell into conversaton with a Tory spin doctor (as one does) and he offered a very similar assessment of Boris, going so far as to say that at some stage early in his career he had been advised to ham up his bumbling but likeable oaf routine as it was a good way to sell himself. Your "sharp as a tack" view tends to pull the rug from under the idea that Boris is simply a "personality". Make him Mayor of London and we might get to see what the tack pricks. I just think he deserves a bigger stage than London and in any event the newt breeder seems to have made a moderately decent job of it.
     
  8. yello

    yello Guru

    Boris does himself no favours, imo, hiding his "sharp as a tack" side.

    Ken, for all of his faults, is a conviction politician (and I don't mean prison sentences). It's a dying breed in an age of cloak and mirror politics where opinion polls seem to inform (if not dictate) political spin. You know what Ken believes, it's on his sleeve for all to see. I don't agree with a lot of what he says but I have huge respect for him. I think he is making London a vibrant and exciting city for people - not just business.

    Boris is likeable, personable, buffoonish - but do you see him as a serious mayor for London? (unless you've been down the pub with him :eek: ) From what I see, I just don't see the courage and innovation coming from Boris that comes from Ken. No contest for me.
     
  9. Paulus

    Paulus Guru

    Location:
    Barnet,

    Boris may well be a personality, but may not be the man to run London. The tories may well pull the strings as New Labour tried to do with Ken. As for the Underground repairs, Ken had these foisted apon him by the Government. He was against the way the contracts were drawn up from the start. I think overall Ken has done a good job.
     
  10. spen666

    spen666 Veteran

    its interesting that so many of the people who on this thread say Mr Livingstone has done a good job do not reside in London
     
  11. Fnaar

    Fnaar Smutmaster General

    Location:
    Thumberland
    I used to reside in London, and I think he's done a god job. Like people have said, you know what he stands for, and can vote or not vote for him accordingly. Broadly speaking, I agree with much (not all) of his political stance and stands. And as Dexys Midnight Runners said in a song in 1985: "I'll tell you one thing, Ken Livingstone is a folk hero". So there!
     
  12. Andy in Sig

    Andy in Sig Vice President in Exile

    Well if, as you seem to imply, he's been doing a bad job, he must have a very good PR department. Or could he be benefitting from being the kind of "personality" which Sam Nichols disapproves of in Boris?

    Just out of interest for us non-metropolitan types, what are the bad things he's done?
     
  13. spen666

    spen666 Veteran

    Well if, as you seem to imply, he's been doing a bad job, he must have a very good PR department. Or could he be benefitting from being the kind of "personality" which Sam Nichols disapproves of in Boris?

    Just out of interest for us non-metropolitan types, what are the bad things he's done?[/quote]


    Find whatever implication you like re Mr Livingstone's term in office.

    You are inventing things again, I commented purely on my perception of the geographic location of those posting on this subject.

    I have neither made any comment on, nor implied anything about the success or otherwise of Mr livingstone as mayor.
     
  14. SamNichols

    SamNichols New Member

    Location:
    Colne, Lancs
    I don't live in London, no - I'm about 4 miles away from its Northern most edge - but due to its proximity I tend to spend most of my time in London, most of my friends live in London, I'm on the underground systrm and all of my local news is London based - Watford is a strange grey area that is gradually becoming a suburb of London anyway. It certainly gives one a fairly objective standpoint to look from - constantly using the benefits that the council tax of London is paying for, but paying my council tax elsewhere.
    For those that think the mayoral role for London isn't big enough - London is the biggest city in Britain, the most prosperous in Europe, one of the three financial capitals of the world, and houses over 10% of the nation's population. This is a far bigger stage than being the MP for Henley on Thames and being the Tory spokesman for Higher Education offers. In this role, there is a huge opportunity to shape the nation actually (Olympics is a pretty big national event, lets face it).
    As for my 'personality' comments, there is a scary mentality in voters to go for people they've heard of, or seen. Look for example at Galloway - he's the epitome of the 'personality' vote, he has since done nothing at Tower Hamlets, has missed most of his constituency surgerys and for what? To make absurd speeches to students, and to make a fool of himself in Big Brother. I find the TV personality of Boris Johnson very likeable, and often hilarious. That's the public conception of him, but it just isn't him; his remarks about Liverpool got him sacked from his last role, and they weren't exactly nice comments. He makes remarkable off the cuff comments about the fact that the phone call he received during the middle of a speech he's giving is 'Dave' tellig him 'not to go off message'. He's a fairly remarkable figure in politics because no one actually quite believes he's a politician. He is, and a very subtle one at that - in his position as HE minister, he's come up with some fairly worrying things about endowments, and the family paying for Higher Education. But, he wraps it up in his mask that makes him appear somewhere between Barney Rubble and Yogi Bear.
     
  15. NickM

    NickM Über Member

    He has raised the price of public transport to ludicrous levels if you don't accept his underhand "Oyster" scheme. You are bullied into having an "Oyster" card whether you want one or not, and made to pay a deposit for it too. Yet you cannot use it on surface rail - something which was supposed to have been fixed years ago. And most people are so dumb that they put large amounts of credit on their "Oyster" cards instead of using them purely on a day-to-day basis. This means that millions of pounds of their money sits earning interest in Livingstone's bank account.

    He pays a very large salary to an American alcoholic to run Transport for London, a body which runs a public transport system which after several years of that individual's oversight is still filthy, extremely overcrowded and very unreliable. Bus "timetables", in particular, are nothing but fairytales. And those stupid bendy buses are a pain in the arse. What is wrong with double deckers? Other European cities have excellent, cheap public transport. Why doesn't London?

    He spends our money on advertising campaigns telling us that we are "one". Patronising, hectoring crap, and clearly untrue.

    He supports the London Olympics and has connived with the ODA and the LDA to destroy the beloved Eastway cycle circuit without providing any replacement.

    He is the man who dreamt up the ludicrous scheme for forcing London cyclists to carry number plates. Largely as a pathetic, spineless sop to the daily car commuters who are London's main transport problem. I haven't noticed him doing anything to make the roads of London safer for cycling. How about starting by enforcing the 20mph speed limits and mobile phone laws?

    In short, he's just a politician like any other. Some of his policies are better than some of some other politicians' policies, and some worse, but just like them his main concern is having and wielding power. He is addicted to telling other people what they may and may not do.