BCfm’s weekly Politics Show presented by Tony Gosling
BCfm audio files usually available 1hr, Radio4All 3-4hrs, after TX
Any probs mp3s should be on alternative links below by then
First hour: news review: Bamboo Club in Bristol – Tony Bullimore who started it has died this week; Bristol Carnival; ‘Some sort of chaos’ – Bristol City Council miss financial accounts deadline; Poor children and pupils with special needs kicked out of Bristol schools ‘to improve results’ – not enough money from Central Government; Northampton Council runs out of money. Crisis-hit Northamptonshire county council faced angry recriminations at a special council meeting last night to discuss its response to a massive financial crisis regarded by experts as “unparalleled in modern times”. The Conservative-run council, which is technically insolvent and has to make up to £70m of cuts over the next few months to balance its books, has warned that it will in future be able to offer only stripped-back of services to residents. Opposition councillors told the meeting on Wednesday evening that the council was paying the price for years of mismanagement and ideological folly. They warned that the proposed cuts would put vulnerable residents in danger and predicted that the council would face legal challenges to its plans to restrict services. Interest rates hiked slightly this week, economy will start to cool – biggest crash in history is coming The Bank of England has raised the interest rate for only the second time in a decade. The rate has risen by a quarter of a percentage point, from 0.5% to 0.75% – the highest level since March 2009; Bristol Library closures – bringing them up to date; The Bearpit: Other works of art included panels covering historic campaigns against the slave trade, and the city’s prominent role in the Suffragette movement. The first panel on Ayles quotes the former MP’s own words, describing the slaughter in the trenches of the Great War as “cold-blooded murder”, and “crimes against God and man to maintain the honour and glory of the British Empire”. – For more than four years a cube-shaped structure in the Bearpit has displayed a variety of slogans, artwork and information. But on Friday morning the cube was unceremoniously removed by Bristol Waste workers on the instruction of Bristol City Council. It comes after the graffiti in the Bearpit was mostly painted over and one week after it was revealed that the roundabout could be turned into a “food innovation hub”. – Lisa Furness discusses the changes and the closing down of the art space – In 2016, the food traders working in the Bearpit set up a breakaway group “Bearpit Bristol” and have effectively worked to push out the community-based BIG. Bristol City Council and Bristol Waste have seemingly backed the traders over the community. Following a campaign of fear-mongering in the media by the traders, Bristol City Council announced that the social experiment was a failure. In early 2018 the Council, amid much confusion, said they would take back control of the Bearpit from the community group (BIG). Since then Bristol Waste have painted the inner walls in monotonous grey and brown, removing artworks such as “Bridges not Walls” and “Deeds not Words”, works painted for Journey to Justice in late 2017. Inevitably this has provoked a response from graffiti artists and the grey walls are tagged constantly. Since this oppressive move by the Council, artists have been harassed and threatened with arrest by the police. No clear guidance has been issued or communicated to the community. – Wynwood District in Miami – Wynwood is an eclectic district in the urban core of Miami, Florida. It is home to art galleries, retail stores, antique shops, eclectic bars, artisanal eateries and one of the largest open-air street-art installations in the world. Throughout the mid-to-late 1900s, Wynwood was an enclave for Caribbean immigrants and home to Miami’s Garment District. Following a decade of economic exodus and depression, in the early 2000s, forward thinking developers and property owners rehabilitated neglected warehouses, shuttered factories, and other unused buildings, transforming them into the innovative businesses that are visible today. Air pollution over illegal limit in Bristol; Peter Mandelson thinks we should have another Brexit referendum: Final Say: Peter Mandelson says fresh referendum could empower Theresa May to ‘stand up against Brextremists’ blackmail’; annual speech by Mayor Marvin Rees; Eleanor Combley, Green leader, says Marvin’s fine words do not match his actions. Speaking at Full council Green group leader, Eleanor Combley, criticised the Mayor for not delivering on his promises. “We’ve heard a lot of beautiful words today, we keep hearing a lot of beautiful words, but the gulf between those words and the reality of the actions I see, and what people around me experience, is so huge that I can’t be silent,” she said. “I find myself like the child in the nursery story who just can’t help blurting out that the emperor isn’t quite as well-dressed as he thinks and I can’t keep myself from speaking out. Sometimes it feels like the words take priority over the reality, so that it becomes more important that you can put on your election leaflets that you have kept the Children’s Centres open than to actually safeguard the services they provide. So you end up keeping them open as buildings maybe, but with jobs and services cut to the point that they are not necessarily really Children’s Centres any more.
Second hour: Investigative reports: Interview with Mike Jempson, who runs Media Wise, and started Campaign for Press and Broadcast Freedom in 1978, which is being wound up in November and whose magazine Free Press is stopping: 1978 when Unions were getting a hard time from the press; print workers and journalists unions – and the introduction of the computer; Bristol Post and local newspapers – how they have changed with ownership changes; Dennis Payter in the Bristol NUJ oral history project, discusses working on The Evening Post when the hot metal press was still being used; ownership of press and vested interests affecting the news; sources of news stories – from news wires; diversity of press now – including the internet; wealthy people can afford to libel media; transparency about who owns press; fake news: Trump proved correct about mass media fake news today which wrongly accused him of keeping the Queen waiting for fifteen minutes on his recent trip to Britain, According to the official schedule. The president arrived almost exactly on time; better ways press should be run. – Peter Osaro discusses robot weapons: – Peter Asaro, Associate Professor of Media Studies “Saving the World from Killer Robots. And Stupid AI” – also links between Google and companies developing these weapons. Elon Musk says Tesla not to manufacture killer robots: Artificial intelligence (AI) could revolutionise human society and especially warfare. But scientists are concerned about the consequences of robots being able to identify and kill people without human oversight. Demis Hassabis at Google DeepMind and founder of SpaceX, Elon Musk, are among 2,400 people who signed the pledge which aims to discourage governments from constructing killer AI. US investigative journalist Seymour Hersh thinks Bin Laden didn’t do 9/11: We end up ruminating about 9/11, perhaps because it is another narrative ripe for deconstruction by sceptics. Polling shows that a significant proportion of the American public believes there is more to the truth. These doubts have been reinforced by the declassification of the suppressed 28 pages of the 9/11 commission report last year undermining the version that a group of terrorists acting independently managed to pull off the attacks. The implication is that they may well have been state-sponsored with the Saudis potentially involved. Hersh tells me: “I don’t necessarily buy the story that Bin Laden was responsible for 9/11. We really don’t have an ending to the story. I’ve known people in the [intelligence] community. We don’t know anything empirical about who did what”. He continues: “The guy was living in a cave. He really didn’t know much English. He was pretty bright and he had a lot of hatred for the US. We respond by attacking the Taliban. Eighteen years later… How’s it going guys?” The concept of perpetual war is not exactly unintentional. The Truman doctrine hinged on this. His successor Eisenhower coined the term “military-industrial complex”. In 2015, giant defence contractor Lockheed Martin’s CEO stated that the more instability in Asia Pacific and the Middle East the better for their profit margins. In other words, war is good for business.