Sunday, 25 January 2015

Letter to the JEP on opposition politics in Jersey

Dear Editor,

I write in response to the excellent letter from the former Deputy of St Clement Gerard Baudains (22nd January). I was disappointed that Mr Baudains was not re-elected in October, not because I share his politics (because I certainly do not) but because I always admired the fact he would never let the government say anything without it being challenged and because he was clearly an independent thinker who would never allow himself to be spoon-fed by the Council of Ministers.

His observation about the lack of effective challenge in the current States Assembly is absolutely right. We are facing 3 years ahead of us of a government which will attempt to force through unpopular measures to hide the dire financial state in public funds they have created, whilst most States Members will simply nod them through unquestioningly. At the same time our Chief Minister is trying to create a public image that he is a caring leader by proclaiming that he will prioritise reducing poverty, yet has refused calls to raise the minimum wage, thus proving that his claims were completely insincere. Also the Chief Minister has not lifted a finger to help the workers at JT who are being exploited, as he has been preoccupied with trying to create insecurity in work by increasing the qualifying period for unfair dismissal claims.

But what I cannot agree with Mr Baudains on is when he says there is no opposition in the States anymore. He is wrong. There is an opposition and it’s called Reform Jersey.

Any casual reader of the JEP will have noticed that it is Reform Jersey’s States Members which have been dominating States question time and have been putting forward proposals to try to undo some of the damage being caused by the Council of Ministers. Despite only having 3 States Members we are able to punch well above our weight because we are well organised and because we work together towards a common vision. That is why Jersey needs party politics.

Reform Jersey does not claim to have all the answers, which is why we would urge any Islander who feels disaffected with the current government to join us. This next year will see us formulate a proper policy statement for how Jersey can have a future with a democratic government based on principles of social and economic justice. Anyone who wishes to contribute ideas to that statement would be more than welcome!

Deputy Sam Mézec – Chairman of Reform Jersey

And in the interests of balance, here is a centre-right take on the previous week from Lord Reginald Hamilton Tooting Rawley Jones III of the Jersey Conservative Party


  1. Sour grapes I'm afraid.
    Maybe the majority of voters are happy with the way things are voted through and see no need for any opposition?

    1. Indeed. The Annual Social Survey says that 70% of Islanders don't have faith in the States of Jersey, and we then have an election turn out of 30%. It doesn't take an Einstein to figure out the correlation there.

      As for sour grapes, you're absolutely right it is.

      I am very sour about the fact that we are led by a government which has given us a £90m blackhole which will the poorest and most vulnerable in our society have to pay for with higher taxes or cuts to public services.

      I'm sour about the fact the government has presided over a tripling of the number of people resorting to using food banks.

      I'm sour over the fact that the government has just made it easier for bad employers to sack people unfairly.

      I'm sour over the fact our government has consistently voted against meaningful increases to the minimum wage and maternity leave provisions, whilst lying to the public about pretending to care for those of the least means amongst us.

      Any Islander who isn't capable of containing their indignation at these facts is a friend of mine and should join Reform Jersey so they can join the fight back.

    2. £90 Million hole brought about by a drop of tax intake from recession and an expensive nice to have civil service. You shouldn't be sour about anything, its the way Jersey has developed over the past 50 years.

    3. No thanks. I'll continue to be sour about poverty in Jersey until the day it is eradicated. I'm not complacent like the current government.

    4. You have to be 'the Government' to change things though.

    5. Indeed. That's a work in progress.

  2. Good Letter Sam and good letter from Gerard. My favourite tho has to be the satirical video from Lord Reginald Hamilton Tooting Rawley Jones III pointing out how dictatorial the government is with its bunch of head-nodding muppets (excluding RJ and maybe a couple of others)

    1. Nothing like this will ever appeal to the voters they need though.
      Voters have had a belly full of squabbling and mocking.

  3. Yes, maybe the majority of voters are happy. And there's the problem. The vast majority of islanders do not form a part of this elite group know as the 'voters'.

  4. To the anonymous who wanted to see the list of which members voted which way on increasing the number of signatures required to force a Parish Assembly -

    Apologies but I don't feel comfortable publishing your actual comment because of a particular word used in it.

  5. Has Reform Jersey got a website of Facebook page or group where it is possible to join the Party? BTW LUV the video and Lord Reginald Hamilton Tooting Rawley Jones III.

    1. Yes, Jersey Politics - with free speech.
      But trolls and fake profiles are not allowed.


      A membership form can be found on the main page.

      We've had a surge in membership requests since the beginning of the year. It seems as if people are seeing through the guff from the Chief Minister and realise he has no solutions to our problems.

  6. The people of Greece have woken up and elected a Socialist goverment. When will the people of Jersey wake up and oust the dictatorship forcing austerity on the middle and low earners?

  7. The people of Greece have indeed elected a new government, however the same 2 choices remain. Repay what the country owes to its creditors (which means a continued reduction in government spending and further deconstruction of the unaffordable public sector) because a 're-negotiation at more favourable terms than other debtor nations will not happen, or default on their existing debts and leave the Euro. Syriza have sold a solution to the public that in reality does not exist, and the country looks as if it is now going to face at best an extension of current economic conditions, or at worst, a very rapid decline into economic depression and hyper-inflation.

    If there was a magic solution to Greece's problems, it would have already been put in place.

  8. Whilst this comment will be treated like any other that criticises the Reform Party or any of its members as "cyber-bullying" - to which they really need to understand the term. Cyber bullying is what happened to Deputy Moore by a former Reform Jersey States Member. That is cyber-bullying, not what I simply state is criticism.

    1. The joke of an effort of humour by the amateur Tadier with his pretend Tory persona just backfires - he can't even rehearse, constantly stumbling and having to look - not even remembering his own characters name. You really can't write this sort of stuff.
    2. £90b blackhole? Don't understand finances do you - haven't even elucidated the concept of the capital versus the current account. The Current Account is what matter - the Capital Deficit is future spending that goes towards hospitals and improvements. By saying £90b you are talking about money that hasn't been spent - it is a lie.
    3. Do you not realise that the public are much smarter than they once were and have access to information that you don't realise they do. This is why left government fade or move to the right to survive. The old lies of the left are not sustainable.

    70% might think voting is a waste of time, mainly because they are happy with the outcome Better than the 14% who voted for Mezec. If you really think you are on a winner - why did Reform Party do so badly?

    1. This won't be treated as cyber-bullying, as it clearly isn't, no matter how unintelligent a set of criticisms it may be.

      If you'd paid attention to my comments on cyber-bullying (which I suspect you have) you'd see that I've have pretty much been exclusively referring to those who use false online identities to attack victims of child abuse. It's a shame your petty political point comes before acknowledging that. Wonder why...

      As for "a Reform Jersey member" cyber-bullying someone, what did we do to him? We expelled him and pretty much sealed his fate on his political career. That is considerably more action than even the police have taken on other cyber-bullies. So I think we as a party can be pretty proud of our strong record of standing up to cyber-bullying. This all despite that we're horrible left-wingers.

      On your (in)substantive points though -

      1. Monty's video is funny. Just because it points out the economic and moral absurdities of the government you support (how much are they paying you btw?) doesn't mean you have to get upset about it. Just don't watch it.

      2. Not sure I'll be taking economics lessons from someone who hasn't even read the criticisms.

      Nobody has ever claimed that the deficit being referred to is the one created by capital projects. If that were the case the figure would be a hell of a lot higher than £90m (that's £90m, not £90b....)

      The deficit comes from the fact that the current account was balanced by transferring capital to it. (e.g. money from the Criminal Offenses Confiscation Fund, or an extra £6m dividend from JT). That money was transferred to make it look like income, rather than capital.

      This is also why, if you'd bother to read it, nobody claims there was an actual deficit for 2014, because the current account was balanced. The criticism of a deficit is for the next three years where there are no capital funds that can be transferred, because they're already been emptied.

      And who was the politician who discovered this was going on? It was the renown left-winger Deputy John Le Fondré. Given that he is an accountant, I'm going to listen to him a bit more than you if that's okay.

      Funny though, because isn't it a Keynsian economic principle that in times of economic crisis you create capital deficits to stimulate the economy? Sounds like you're a secret left-winger (that, or you just don't understand it).

      3. Pick up a newspaper mate. That argument is holding out pretty strong in Greece right now.

      On your final point, check out the Annual Social Survey to see that the idea most are happy with the outcome is complete tosh.

      It's these arguments that make me sleep very soundly at night. This is the best the right can do. Brilliant.

  9. Do you not think you were a bit mean to Nick Le Cornu when you slung him out of the party and left him to the mercy of MSM rabid dogs to tear into?
    He had been on the political scene for many years and long before you came along after all.

    1. No.

      His tweet was completely unacceptable. I disagreed with everything he suggested in it and could not conjure any public defense of it with any degree of sincerity. The rest of my party agreed unanimously.