Ed Balls is the Education Minister with the unfortunate name, reminding me of Yes Prime Minister when Jim Hacker wrote on a Civil Service document “Round Objects”, to which Sir Humphrey Appleby replied, “Whom is Round and to what does he object?”…but I digress…
Yesterday, SMS received information that Ed Balls was in town and available to talk to, but only for those in the know…politicians (and bureaucrats) like to avoid real people wherever possible, prefering to talk to other politicians, bureaucrats and sometimes journalists, who all tend to speak their language….real people are quite often more tricky to put off…SMS sent a real person to talk Balls…
Transcript of a conversation with Ed Balls 1st June 09 between the Corn Exchange and the Swan Hotel
Q Are you aware the Borough Council is proposing a move to a 2 tier educational system ?
A Yes. This is entirely a local decision.
Q Is central Government BSF funding dependent in any way on 3 tier versus 2 tier?
A No – entirely a local choice that will not influence the level of funds allocated.
Q How should such an important organisational decision be handled locally – a referendum?
A Well I think that should be a matter for your elected Council.
Q Our mayor is suggesting he can use the Local Government Act to avoid such a decision going before all the elected councillors?
A Oh you’ve got me there …that’s a matter of detail I’m not familiar with.
Q Given the state of the nation’s finances what is the risk of BSF funds being cut?
A Depends on how you vote. Vote Tory and the funds will be cut. We want to keep it going.
So who is talking Balls now? The Education Minister, or our local equivalents of Jim Hacker and Sir Humphrey Appleby?