Take a look at this video. Warning it contains strong language and is inappropriate for children
It’s Bristol Mayor George Ferguson being confronted by a member of the public on residents’ parking zones and his top down/no consultation so called transport “experiments”
Most journalists focus on the fact that the Mayor tells this member of the public to “fuck off”
He snaps under the slightest pressure from a relatively polite but persistent man. The questioner is no worse than many Councillors experience in their surgeries or community events. The questioner deserves better than to be told to “fuck off”.
Ultimately though it’s the other content of the video which is more concerning.
Member of the public: “…That doesn’t mean to say you can do anything you want to do.”
Mayor “I can”
1 min 15 seconds
I’d lay a bet that that kind of attitude will cost the Bristol taxpayers thousands of pounds in legal fees following a successful Judicial Review of Mayor Ferguson’s decisions.
The Mayor goes on to describe the questioner as “boring” & “extremely boring” for raising a point that disagrees with him. The man to his credit says “it’s not about Ad hominem” attacks and that the Mayor should listen to voters and Councillors.
When challenged about this incident by the Bristol Post Mayor Ferguson initially denied swearing.
He lied… or has a very very poor memory (itself a concern)
He also called the relatively polite but emphatic man who challenged him, a “stalker”. This is criminal conduct. A serious allegation. It’s one the Mayor has levelled at others including myself because the Mayor just doesn’t like scrutiny, he doesn’t like the democratic processes. He likes tame Journos and Editors not asking difficult questions. I suspect the accusation of stalking is another lie
When challenged about swearing at a member of the public he said “However I shall not be bound by normal political expectations. I’m passionate man.”
The Mayor doesn’t just think he’s better than Councillors. He thinks he’s better than you the voter. That is a big problem
Conclusion: votes in Cabinet needed now more than ever
Given such spectacular arrogance and apparent lies when being challenged is it any wonder that Labour and others want there to be votes in Mayor Ferguson’s Cabinet? Is it any wonder that they want his decisions to go off to Scrutiny?
Let’s be clear: This is a Mayor who needs more scrutiny. Any man so arrogant needs his actions “sense checked” by more modest and sensible individuals for the good of Bristol.
If Cllr Helen Holland and Cllr Jackson win a concession on voting rights in Cabinet it will be a massive achievement in holding this spectacularly arrogant Mayor to democratic accountability. It will certainly put Bristol, not Mayor Ferguson, First.