Local MP Steven Pound makes a total fool of himself this morning commenting on the silly baked bean story in the Gazette. He says:
I think that it is a good idea that has been spoilt by bad planning and execution. The council had a duty to explain this to people before they did it. Instead of being secretive and surreptitious they should have been upfront and honest and people would have supported it. Whoever came up with the idea of putting cameras in tins of baked beans needs to come up with 57 reasons why to convince me.
It is probably fair to say that Pound will not have studied the Tory local election manifesto for Ealing in detail. If he had he would have found the following statement, in bold, under the heading “Graffiti and Flytipping”:
A Conservative run Ealing Council will take all measures, including CCTV operations in known problem areas, to catch those responsible for graffiti and fly tipping. We will adopt a policy of prosecution in all cases and will press for the heaviest fines to be imposed upon those responsible.
The council doesn’t need 57 reasons it has a mandate.
Pound should know that the reason the baked bean hare started running was due to a line in the March issue of Around Ealing, a council publication that is delivered to every home in the borough. The prominent article on page 9 about community safety, with two pictures of CCTV cameras, said:
To catch vandals and envirocriminals, cameras disguised as anything from tin cans to house bricks will instantly email images to the council’s CCTV control centre.
To call the council’s approach secretive and surreptitious is plain wrong. The council has absolutely been upfront and honest and people do support the cameras as a result.
The five quotes at the bottom of the article from real people were much more sensible than anything Pound said:
- I think it is a good idea, Anita Gaida
- In one way they are good, but on the other hand it is a bit sad, Matt Stollar
- There is definitely something in it, John Clancy
- I think it is a good idea, Gulaid Abdi
- I think it is a great idea, very creative, and I am very happy to see them doing it if it will help the problem, Martina Drury
I guess Pound making a fool of himself is not a first.