Issue 142: 2018 02 22: Letter to the Editors

22 February 2018

Letter to the Editors

With reference to Financing Councils

To The Editors
The Shaw Sheet

Dear Sirs 

John Watson suggests a very sensible way of raising extra cash for local authorities in his article Financing Councils, published last week.  Getting the public more involved in those matters which touch on all our lives is something which politicians, ever more eager to accrete extra powers to themselves, may resist but has to be right in complex modern democracies.

Can I suggest somewhere else that the public touch might be equally welcome?  That is in the distribution of honours.  The twice yearly lists used to be remarkable only in their dullness; nobody could complain of that now as popstars and athletes, failed politicians and the offshore rich jostle for medals and ribbons.  Maybe we could move over to a system whereby the numbers of gongs are greatly reduced, are only awarded to recipients over the age of, say, fifty, that the qualifying activity not reflect personal material benefit to the awardee (be-gone, Mr Green and Mr Branson) and, most important of all, are subject to winning a popular vote.

In fact Simon Cowell might make it self-funding by turning it all into a TV competitive talent show – that should be worth a CBE at least.

Yours faithfully
Peter Wilson

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