Today’s Cancer provided an uncritical platform for editor Mike Norton’s wealthy mates to make their latest announcement about what we are being asked to call the ‘South Bristol Link’.
For starters, this is quite possibly the world’s most pathetically inept rebranding and spin exercise, in which we’re invited to believe that a ring road is not a ring road if some thick twat down the council calls it a ‘link’ instead.
The article itself was a typical piece of Norton’s recycled PR tosh. It will “unlock millions of pounds of new investment in South Bristol,” gushed the newspaper.
Palpable nonsense. The Blogger has looked at the economics of this dual carriageway to nowhere before and a small congested road through south Bristol’s residential neighbourhoods will not create the huge investment opportunities claimed.
The road that will is an M4 – M5 southern link. A project way beyond the skills, experience and vision of Norton’s shower of small-minded, small-time business cronies and their patsies on six-figure salaries down at the Council house.
Chris Hutt over on the Green Bristol Blog, ably assisted by some clued-in commenters, has also been looking at other aspects of the economics of this road today.
But here, what interests us more is not the economics of this road but the politics. Here’s two quotes from the Cancer article:
John Savage, chief executive of Business West, which represents regional businesses, said: “A link road that opens up south Bristol has been a vital ingredient we’ve needed for transport and economic growth for 50 years. Any delays in making this link available would be robbing people and future generations of a better chance of getting a job.”
David Bishop, Bristol City Council’s strategic transport director, said he wanted to see the new road go ahead.
Meanwhile there’s no comment whatsoever from the politicians we elect. Instead they seem to have passed all the decision-making power on the issue over to Savage and Bishop and an obscure and constitutionally arcane quango, the West of England Partnership.
What exactly is the point of voting in this city?