Skip to main content
The City Cabinet on Monday had a few interesting decisions.

The demolition and redevelopment of North Newtown is a typically absurd decision by the Housing Department and Cabinet. This estate has a problem with crime. The Housing Department have plucked a figure out of the air that it would cost about £33,000 to improve each of the properties. By underestimating the cost of repurchasing the 35 private properties (which would not cost 33K to improve) they come out with specious figures indicating that it is cheaper to knock the properties down rather than improve them. This, of course, ignores the cost of rebuilding any properties.

Meanwhile in the real world the drug dealing will continue. The people living on the estate will live on an estate that deteriorates dramatically whilst they wait to be cleared and fewer houses will exist for people to live in and as a consequence more people will live in crowded conditions.

Meanwhile the Birmingham Trades Union Council have written the following letter:

We are writing, on behalf of Birmingham Trades Union Council, to advise you of an important resolution adopted by the Trades Union Council at its November meeting.

The Trades Union Council is deeply concerned at the deal done between Labour and Conservative Councillors on Birmingham City Council, as a result of this concern the Council passed the following resolution:

    "Birmingham Trades Union Council condemns the shabby deal entered into between the Birmingham Labour Party Councillors and the Conservative Party to share out leading positions in the City Council.

    This dirty deal is not in the interests of the Birmingham Working Class and represents collaboration of the worst kind, which this Trades Council has always opposed.

    We therefore call upon the Birmingham TUC to lead a trade union campaign to oppose this deal with the object of ensuring that the Labour Councillors withdraw from it and never conclude a similar deal in the future."

As part of the campaign we are launching about the deal we would encourage you to raise this matter with your members and ask them to lobby their Labour Councillors and ensure that no such deals are done in the future. We will also be writing to all Branch and Constituency Labour Parties in Birmingham, and we would ask you to join us in lobbying them to change Labour Party policy to rule out such deals.

The Birmingham Trades Union Council will shortly be organising a series of meetings to develop policies for our public services that advance the interests of working people, as opposed to deals with Conservative Councillors.

Yours sincerely,

Mick Rice/Douglas Jewell - Joint Secretaries Birmingham Trades Union Council

Given that the Mick Rice who has signed this letter is also the Councillor Mick Rice who is a member of the Labour Cabinet (with the support of the Conservatives) this raises some questions in peoples' minds. Luckily although this letter was sent out on 28th November he has already dealt with the issue by trying to disown the letter on 4th December in a confidential email sent to Labour councillors plus 2 Lib Dem Councillors which reads as follows:

Dear Comrades

I am in the process of sending you a letter in my capacity as joint secretary of Birmingham TUC.


The fact that I have signed the letter as an OFFICER of Birmingham TUC does not constitute personal support or agreement with its contents.

Best Wishes

Mick Rice

So that's clear then.


Popular posts from this blog

Statement re False Allegations Campaign

Many people will know that my family and I have been subject to a campaign of false allegations by Esther Baker for the past 4 1/2 years. Yesterday there was a court judgment Baker v Hemming [2019] EWHC 2950 (QB) which formally confirmed that the allegations were false. Esther Baker, who had brought a libel claim against me, dropped her defence of Truth to my counter-claim and was taken by the judge as no longer trying to prove her allegations. Due to Baker's various breaches of court rules and orders, she has been barred from further repeating her allegations even in the court proceedings. Further claim of mine in libel against Baker are ongoing. There is a good summary in the Daily Mail here.

This demonstrates the challenge in fighting false allegations in today's Britain. A substantial campaign was built up to promote allegations which had no substance to them. Various Labour MPs and in pa…

Service launched to reduce the pain of calling a call centre.

Click here to try the beta test call entre phoning service"John Hemming, who has created an internet Startup called Cirrostratus since he ceased being an MP, is launching a free online service to make life easier for people phoning call centres.   The service is provided by Cirrostratus, but the SIP backbone is provided by the multi-award winning business VoIP solution, Soho66." John said, "Many people find phoning call centres a real pain.  Our service is aiming to make things a lot easier.   One click on alink or the bookmarks list and our server will phone up the call centre and get through all the menus.  This is a lot faster than when people have to phone up and is less irritating." "Additionally the system uses WebRtc and the internet to make the call. This means that people don't find their normal phone system being blocked whilst they hang on the line waiting to speak to a human being." Marketing Manager from Soho66, David McManus, said: &q…

A grassroots uprising against terrorism

Original Date 26th May 2017

One thing I used to do when I was the Member of Parliament for Yardley was to call together meetings of all of the religious organisations in Yardley as a Yardley multi-faith group.  In many ways it is the creation of informal links between people that makes communication easier even if there is no formal decision making power.

Obviously this is something I would intend to do again if the people of Yardley ask me to take on the responsibility of representing them in parliament.

It highlights the sort of thing that politicians can do which arises from a leadership role within communities rather than any constitutional position.

I have already written in an earlier blog post about the principles of resolving conflict.  It can be summarised as "murdering innocents is wrong".

A number of local mosques have issued statements following the atrocity in Manchester and I think it is worth quoting from parts of them.

One said that the mosque "Unequivoc…