Cesspool: a storage container for liquid waste and sewage. It is often used to describe a disgusting or corrupt place. Let’s focus on corruption for today’s thoughts. Example: Liverpool.
Liverpool is an incredible city. It is steeped in history, as you would expect for something that has recently had its 809th birthday. It has a glittering past due to the fact that it was always home to the doers and the dreamers. Those who wanted a little more and were prepared to go out and get it. I’m not here to give you a history lesson, I’m here to ask why the glory days are over.
There has always been a boldness of the leaders of the past that have shaped this city. One of my favourite examples of this is the doors on St Georges Hall. SPQL. Engraved into the doors is a reference to the Roman Empire. On the shields of the Roman soldiers that marched across the continent, SPQR was engraved. “For the senate and the people of Rome” It’s a striking symbolic statement that the doors of one of Liverpool’s most famous landmarks would have a reference to one of history’s all conquering civilisations and cast itself amongst them, as if to say that Liverpool too is a civilisation not to be messed with. I know, I know, I wasnt going to give a history lesson but that’s just a little taster.
So how does a city decline so steeply so that one of the city’s most ambitious symbols is currently stood behind one of the city’s most lacklustre projects? Christmas Markets 2016. Liverpool Markets Ltd. A stain on the city’s can do spirit of the past.
The Christmas markets in Liverpool is not the reason for this blog, it merely typifies the sad state that the city is currently in. It brings an almost poetic end to a shambles of a year and it shines a rather large green lantern across the city, which should highlight the greed and corruption that resides in the Cunard Building.
Liverpool of the past lived to be a world leader. A world leader in trade, in transport, in everything which it turned its hand to, Liverpool and its institutions strived to be the best. Today Liverpool lives for election cycles, for photo shoot opportunities and handouts.
St. John’s Market reopened this month. £2.5million was spent on it. Allegedly. Can someone tell me where? Can you walk into this new market and tell me that it is a different spec to what big yellow storage would request if they were to open a new site? I’m certain they don’t spend £2.5million on fit outs. So I ask again, where is the Arteta money Bill? I mean Joe, but I’ll be back for Bill in a bit. An insider tells me £600,000 went on lights and electrics. Go inside and tell me that has any truth in it.
The fireworks. What the fuck was that? Did they blow the budget on a graphic designer for all those billboards that popped up everywhere? How can you take loads of explosives, blow them up in front of one of the worlds most iconic waterfronts and still manage to fuck it up? I’ll tell you how; Culture Liverpool. Now this is a waste of space, time, money, oxygen. It’s a significant in road into this supposed £90million shortfall the council currently has. You know the one that they’ve decided they are going to waste money on holding a referendum to ask you if you want to pay more council tax to help them pay for it? Smashing idea. Culture Liverpool is led by a woman who claims to be responsible for the capital of culture win in 2008. It won’t surprise you that she isn’t from Liverpool, but something about a corrupt money pit with a £3billion budget drew her in. She sounds like Debbie McGhee, she’s certainly helping to make your money disappear. Even if we take her at face value, why are we even still talking about the capital of culture win 8 years later. 8 years after what the world at our feet and managed to achieve a wonderful puppet show and an international festival of business that happens in Liverpool because no one else wants it, because other cities in the world are more concerned with actually doing things. 8 years later and still the carpet in the airport says capital of culture winner, it’s embarrassing.
The city stinks like a cesspool because the Cunard building isn’t big enough to contain it. The council is meant to facilitate business in the city not own it. Two councillors and a third party are currently looking to create a collaborative working space in the city for start up businesses. This isn’t a council initiative, it’s private business aim of the councillors using the knowledge they have from within the council to further their own ends. Guess where the funding will come from? Yes that’s right , Liverpool City Council your council tax will pay for this. Is that not the purest example of corruption? I wonder if this will be on the ballot when they explain where your tax is spent.
How about the commercialisation team? They do a great job don’t they. A streamlined working group that engages with the worlds biggest brands and seeks out new opportunities with a bold and determined strategy. Not Livepool Councils team though, they are shite. They managed to pay MTV for the privilege of putting their logo all around the city to legitimise LiMF. Seriously. Who made that decision? Pay an increasingly irrelevant brand so that you can advertise them across all the billboards you have paid for so that people turn up to your free event and watch a coked up Shaggy do just enough lines to get It Wasn’t Me out of his swinging jaw. Great job team.
There are other arms to the council though. The Business Improvement District. Although officially not part of the council, several staff members are seconded over and if you don’t pay your annual fee then the council’s collection team will enforce it. Seems like the council to me. Seems like racketeering to me but let’s move on. Headed up by a reverend who in his capacity as representing the needs of local businesses. Many of whom will be independent bars and restaurants , he is abusing his position of power to secure the rights to St Luke’s, the bombed out church, and convert it into a leisure destination that will compete with many of the businesses he currently represents. It’s like a right of passage. Get into a position of power, abuse it, carry on.
All power corrupts apparently. That is why the council should be held accountable but how can they be held accountable to things that the public do not know about? That is why I am writing. I am passionate about this city and how it can regain its status as a world leader but something needs to change, and I suggest we start at the top.
Think of these things when you read about how essential services need to be cut. Think about it when you see another ribbon cutting. Think about it when you see another event where the same group of people get together to pat each other on the back about a job well done #itsliverpool
Or as my namesake said; ¡hasta la victoria siempre lad!