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SALFORD MAYOR ELECTION CHICKENS WON’T ANSWER QUESTIONS
 

Star date: 20th April 2012

DO WE WANT A SALFORD CHICKEN FOR MAYOR?

With the deadline fast approaching, only three of the ten candidates who want our votes in the Mayoral Election have taken the Salford Star Mayoral Challenge – a series of thirty questions about policy, democracy and Salford issues, as well as a couple of fun bits chucked in.

If these candidates won't answer the Salford Star's questions before they are elected, what chance have Salford people got once they are Mayor?  

Full story here…


Salford Mayoral Election Booklet
click image to enlarge

Who Wants To Vote For A Chicken To Be Mayor Of Salford?

In line with the Salford Star policy when it comes to politicians, we don't let them spout their usual propaganda, avoid questions and stuff like that. So we thought we'd send all ten candidates standing for Mayor a questionnaire – The Salford Star Mayoral Challenge…

The Challenge consisted of thirty probing questions which we thought would give a good indication to Salford people of where the candidates stand, what their personality is like and how much they actually know about Salford and its issues.

With the deadline almost expired, only three candidates have actually taken the Challenge which speaks volumes about their attitude to the people they hope will elect them.

Would Salford people really vote for someone who won't even open themselves up for scrutiny before they are elected? What will they be like once they are actually wearing the chain? A scary thought…

The three candidates who have actually been brave enough to take the Challenge are Joe O'Neil, the Green Party candidate; Michael Felse, the English Democrats candidate and Michael Moulding, the Community Action Party candidate.

Independent candidate, Paul Massey only received his Challenge yesterday so we've given him longer, while the other independent candidate, Pat Ward, has been `really busy' but has told us she'll finish it off over the weekend.

Pat did tell us that some other candidates are not happy with our questions, and that she herself thought that our `tosser' remark was `inappropriate'… This is in reference to the last question on the Challenge: `Do you agree that anyone who says `Vote For Me!' is an arrogant, careerist egotist who's not worth voting for? Are you a power crazed tosser?'

A fair question, is it not? As regards to the word `tosser', this was actually used on serious programmes like News At 10 and Newsnight with regards to the `Andrew Lansley…tosser' rap (see here) about the sell-off of the NHS, that went totally mainstream… So, no apologies there.

If the candidates who haven't taken the Challenge – including Ian Stewart (Labour), Norman Owen (Liberal Democrats) and Karen Garrido (Conservative) – are using our use of the word `tosser' to avoid answering questions then, again, we ask, what the hell are they going to be like once in office?

There were some fun questions on the Challenge to test the candidate's sense of humour (or obvious lack of it), but the vast majority were about how they would be held up to account, what salary they would take, poverty, Council secrecy and issues around Langworthy, Eccles, Irlam, Swinton, Media City, Lower Kersal and Charlestown and lots, lots more.

Virtually everyone who the Salford Star has spoken to over the last few weeks has been unsure of who to vote for in Mayoral election; few have known what any of the candidates stand for; and very few intend to vote at all.

While the candidates may want Salford people to merely judge them on the two page propaganda they've put out in the `Mayoral Election – a voter's guide' booklet that's come through the electorate's doors, the Salford Star Mayoral Challenge was intended to probe a bit deeper.

If the Mayoral election was supposed to be about bringing more democracy to the political process, this campaign in Salford has failed miserably.

We'll give all the candidates until Sunday midnight to fill in the Challenge or chicken out. It's up to them… But who wants to Vote For A Chicken To Be Mayor Of Salford?

* All the responses to the Salford Star Mayoral Challenge will be published over the next week on www.salfordstar.com

 

 

 

 

 


 

Salford Star wrote
at 21:10:09 on 23 April 2012
See Salford Pimpernelle comment below...Watch this space tomorrow!
 
Salford Star wrote
at 21:08:23 on 23 April 2012
See Steve Middleton comment below...Shame on what? Seeing how candidates cope with an awkward question. If they can't handle this, they've got no chance on the streets...Besides which, `egotistical, careerist, tosser' is a phrase that comes to mind with most politicians, we would have thought...
 
salford pimpernelle wrote
at 21:03:50 on 23 April 2012
to Salford star, don't know if your interested, started to pull down Tootal drive primary school, if you want to get some shots before its gone, just one more facility taken out of this community by labour along with the willows, mining museum, half of stock lane playing fields,half of hope library and the eventual loss of hope high this summer and all hallows in the near future, seems the ethnic cleansing and destruction that has happened in other parts of Salford is now happening in this area, what's the chance that merry and his merry men will try to use compulsory purchase orders on the Tootal area for the planning department at the Salford council on behalf of the parasitic planners and developers, Salford council seem to be running the area in to the ground, BBC staff would prefer homes with there own gardens, especially when they come cheap. funny this LABOUR COUNCIL destroy communities like Langworthy, Kersal,and Broughton then spend millions trying to rebuild them, just a bit of advise to Salford council and especially John Merry don't try to reinvent the wheel and if it ain't broke don't try to fix it.
 
Steve Middleton wrote
at 21:03:39 on 23 April 2012
It's my understanding that Councillor Norman Owen, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor has already answered your questions. But your last question removed all doubt that 'Salford Star' is a serious media outlet. You should remove that question from all the received answers and apologise to all the candidate for insulting them. Shame on you.
 
joyce wrote
at 17:04:36 on 23 April 2012
Has anyone managed to get tickets via the Advertiser for tomorrows mayoral debate at Kemsing Walk?
 
Mark Armstrong wrote
at 20:34:52 on 22 April 2012
I personally think that the chicken would be a front runner in this candidacy for Mayor. I can guarantee that it has a higher IQ, better moral fibre, lack of political or self interest and above all greater business acumen than all of them.
 
Michael Felse wrote
at 20:34:11 on 22 April 2012
Andrew, thank you for the stats. Might I add some from our ED campaign findings that give reason why Labour is running scared of the transferable votes system used in this Mayor election. The total of all votes at last years local elections gave Labour 18% of the total eligible vote. This means 82% of Salford did not vote Labour. The yuppie building plan Labour has used to regenerate Salford will this year add 3600 new voters to the register as compared with last. In brief, it will take less than 2% more voters to turn out in a Mayoral than last years council elections for Labour to simply lose its City-Wide majority. And of course the last 2 standing go head to head on 2nd votes which gives us the real reason why Labour want a low turn out.
 
andrew behan wrote
at 17:31:07 on 22 April 2012
I have read the mayoral booklet its the usual stuff.listen to the people! spend money better! look after the old! encourage the young!the only thing wrong for me is that it's the same old people saying it(Save some new Independent names thrown in the mix).I applaude Salford Star for trying but I expect your questions would require some honest answers.I'm attending the MEN&BBC radio debates which maybe they might have to answer some questions but these have been scrutinised in advance.I was surprised to see that Salford Labour had picked Ian Stewart given that they rejected him in 2010 to run for Parliament to represent Salford for 2 seats,instead picking Barbara Keeley then Hazel Blears.I think it will be a 2 horse race between Labour and Cons given their election machines swinging into action and busing in loads of student political wannabes from outside Salford to help.I hope the people that do vote all 23% of them look at Pat Ward she seems to have a bit of commonsense.
 
Fadge wrote
at 17:28:46 on 22 April 2012
Hope you are wrong this time , Winston . The Independents deserve their chance . Mike Moulding will ask a mayoral salary of £35,ooo, dump the CEO,and slash council tax . For those in Ordsall , George Tapp is a superb representive - honesty , integrity,decency - traits that were abandoned years ago by the CON/LIB/LAB traitors . We have all had enough of the greedy, leeching, parasites at the Madhouse . Time for REAL CHANGE .
 
Winston Smith wrote
at 06:11:39 on 22 April 2012
I can't agree with Alice either. one thing the council has never done to save money is become more efficient - their answer to every problem they face is 'charge them more' whether it's parking charges, business rates, council tax or any other way they can find to screw the public. When all this fails they start putting their own staff out of work. Who is in charge of Efficiency at the council? That's right - nobody. After all, it's not their money they're pissing away, and being Labour, they'll get re-elected anyway - so nothing to lose.
 
A.P. wrote
at 20:59:43 on 20 April 2012
Re Council Tax Extortion .Can't agree with Alice on this . The tax in this city is far too high , and must be slashed . By streamlining the council , stopping the obscene wastage , dumping the obscene-salaried CEO , banning the funding of all 'regeneration'schemes , banning all funding of rich big business parasites , Massive financial savings will be made . Council Tax Extortion in this rotton city must be no more than in the neighbouring areas . NO COMPROMISE. I will only vote for a mayoral candidate who promises to do this . We have been ripped off for far too long in this Hellish City .
 
Heather Rawlinson wrote
at 17:31:00 on 20 April 2012
What a great idea!! I am all for this - will make an intersting change to the usual drivel we get through our doors. Have yet to receive the mayoral booklet though I am sure it will contain nothing earth shattering. I have never had anyone call at my door to discuss their views either, but I suppose they can't be bothered. In my view this apathy in engaging with the electorate equals apathy in office. Real waste of money all this.
 
Irwell Running Through Me wrote
at 17:30:54 on 20 April 2012
Big Chief Looking For Work - the yellow chicken is really a one trick pony when it comes to politics, which is why I think it will fit right in. It makes a hell of a lot of noise, but other than that is a bit useless. As for my name - it is handed down through generations of Native Salfordians, my grand father was of the noble County Waterford tribe before he ended up on the Tarmac of Tears in Salford :)
 
Alice Searle wrote
at 17:30:46 on 20 April 2012
I would like to add another question to the Salford Star questions.This concerns the Devolved Budgets, where some of the Concil tax is passed to eight areas in Salford for local community groups to apply for. This supports community events and facilities. It is a democratic way of distributing funds and assisting voluntary groups in initiating good community ideas and ensuring their continuation. The Budget groups which allocate these funds are elected from their communities and have local knowledge. Do the prospective Mayors intend to continue with this policy or would they claim these funds back for some other scheme. Finally, cuts in the Community Tax will mean less money for the services and facilities we need.These services are under pressure because of the Goverment's cuts in grants. Remember what the Council Tax covers. Do we really want poorer provision for the elderly, the disabled, for children's services, housing, for highways, police, fire service etc.? We do need to ensure that the Council, or a future Mayor, use the Council Tax wisely to support these essential facilies but to promote the 'cutting of the Council Tax by half' as good move is ridiculous and will make Salford worse not better!
 
Big Chief Looking For Work wrote
at 13:54:42 on 20 April 2012
Irwell running through me . Sounds like a fine North American Indian name . Your daughter's yellow chicken has all the qualifications to make a very fine MP. Squawking Yellow Chicken would have easily beaten Rocking the Boat Blears. Can Yellow Chicken wave a cheque about , spout meaningless crap and eat kit-kats ?
 
Michael Felse wrote
at 12:48:25 on 20 April 2012
I add my congrats to Salford Star for taking time to put questions to all the candidates, at once.If any cannot be bothered to answer their questions then it must automatically enter the only one answer at Q30.
 
Irwell Running Through Me wrote
at 12:17:04 on 20 April 2012
So. Some of the candidates are unhappy about the use of the word 'tosser', and perhaps we can take it then that this is indeed their excuse for failing to reply. This just goes to show, in my opinion, a gulf, between who these people are, and who they think they are? So, who are they - well, let's be honest - they are a collection of confused right wing nut cases, and former criminals, and pseudo socialist little provincials dreaming of a big chair, a big chain, and hob nobbing with the bigger pseudo socialists at Manchester City Council. The latter are the most likely to end up with the 'big job' and they will no doubt open a couple of shops....oh, wait....no they won't will they? Shops are no longer allowed. Tesco wouldn't like that. Okay, so they will no doubt spend their time visiting old peoples homes and drop in cent......oh, wait a minute, sorry. No, there will be non left soon. Right, so here we go. They will no doubt spend their time using expenses to find shopping trips to London with Hazel under the guise of 'official council business' and maybe even the odd 'massage' thrown in for good measure. Yes. That's better. For the record, if needed, my daughter has a very yellow, rubber chicken from America which makes a loud squawking sound when you squeeze it, but does almost nothing else at all.
 
Winston Smith wrote
at 11:44:04 on 20 April 2012
Just wondering if there will be an online poll organised by the Salford Star so we can see how the candidates are performing in the run up to the big day?
 
Winston Smith wrote
at 11:05:54 on 20 April 2012
LOL - "Are you a power crazed tosser"?!? Anyone who says Yes to that one might even get my vote...
 
Zooty Zoot wrote
at 11:04:52 on 20 April 2012
No surprise that the usual suspects arrogantly think posting bits of paper containing vague and meaningless bullshit about their ' vision for salford' to voter's homes will suffice . It won't . Although I suspect that the lab/lib/con traitors are terrified of confronting the voter's in person . So sod them . I hope the Independents complete the Star Mayoral Challenge , and will be looking forward to honest answers , especially from the candidates slashing council tax extortion . We all know we have been ripped-off for years in this rotton city .
 
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