Leeds Trolleybus Enquiry Day 3
May 1 2014
On the third day of the Leeds Trolleybus Public Enquiry we found out more about Mr Martin Farrington’s value systems, and how little research he has put into the areas which would be affected by the proposed trolley system. I would urge you to listen to some of the audio recordings of the Leeds Trolleybus Enquiry that I have been making with the assistance of the gentlemen of the North West Leeds Transport Forum.
The most extraordinary moment of the day for me was when Mr Farrington said that he couldn’t bring the fields of Headingley Hill to his mind. The largest and most complex green site that would be lost, of the entire route, and he can’t bring it into his mind. As if it was some little detail that is beneath his consideration. Well, he does see himself as a big picture man, and he does like to delegate to his subordinates, like getting them to write parts of his statement, for instance.
Rather than detail a list of things that Mr Farrington doesn’t know or hasn’t looked into, I’d like to examine the psychology of someone who would promote a plan which involves destroying green areas of great character, in an area that he is forced to acknowledge is very short on green space, and not even be able to bring to mind the places which he intends to destroy. This is arrogance and complacency of a fairly extreme kind. It is fascinating to see the deadpan way in which he explains his beliefs that the local community has been weighed in the balance of his judgement and found wanting compared to the big businesses and shopping malls of the city centre which he seeks to promote.
He was unmoved by the introduction of ideas by Chris Foren (Chair of the A660 Joint Council) in his cross examination about how there is an emerging view that in already developed countries such as the UK, further perpetual economic development beyond a certain level fails to serve the benefit of the people. Indeed it is becoming clear to many that such over development serves only the limitless appetites of corporate expansion and domination of our culture. Which, incidentally, many now recognise as being the source of the ecological catastrophe we are currently facing on out planet.
At its best, Utilitarianism devalues the individual human being in its insistence that the happiness of the greater number is the basis of good, and that therefore those who do not conform to this should be subject to the influence and domination of that great number. But the present scenario goes well beyond even this travesty of ethics. Entire communities and landscapes are to be engineered for the benefit of those who see themselves as the elites and worthy of directing the path of social development.
Just as Africa and the Middle East were carved up both before and after the Great War (WW I) by Whitehall mandarins with rulers on maps of places that they would never even consider visiting, we see our modern Leeds City Council mandarins such as Mr Farrington carving up the map of Leeds without any actual reference to the landscape or communities which have evolved there over centuries. They are simply to be deleted and overwritten like some memory card whose files are no longer required.
I would suggest that this it is actually a pathological state of mind that the steersmen behind Leeds City Council are in and are attempting to inflict on its citizens. They see themselves as knowing what is best for us and ignore the citizens responses as I discussed on the blog for the first day of the Enquiry. It is quite fascinating to me to listen to how people like Farrington and Cllr Richard Lewis dismiss the opposition to the trolleybus by saying that they expect to only hear the activists and that really this is only a small part of the population. The absurdity of this position is exposed by Chris Foren when he suggests that you can only count those who vote or express an opinion and that you cannot attribute anything to those who express none. I have already discussed the immense obstacles, both practical and psychological, to be overcome in the process of negotiating the bureaucratic assault course of participating in the Public Enquiry on my blog for Day 1.
These people will do anything to ignore or deny the voices of those who speak against them. And we must remember that Mr Farrington is an appointed civil servant, not an elected representative. He is a servant of the city and its citizens, that is what the words ‘civil servant’ mean. And yet he takes the view that he can exercise complete influence and domination of the citizenry without even knowing those parts of the city which he wants to change. It is a form of sociopathy to have the desire and intention of doing things to people and the way they live their lives without any concern or feeling about how they would be affected by one’s actions.
Some may feel that I couch my analysis in strong terms ~ pathological states of mind, sociopathy and the like. But what terms are available to us when these people seek to exercise a condition of complete influence or domination upon us?
Such conditions can only be imposed through immoral disregard of human rights. Fortunately there is still some backbone of liberty left in our nation and it has been heartwarming to meet others who are motivated to stand against this tyranny, and to hear the denunciations of this sham. I am beginning to feel that the Public Enquiry may not only roundly see off this trolleybus nonsense (which as Cllr Richard Lewis said last year, is ‘more of a highways scheme than one of public transport’) but that in the process we may gain a closer awareness of the dark underbelly of Leeds City Council and the network of those who seem to have hijacked the administration of our beautiful city and have been steering it into troubled waters with their grandiose schemes and petty ambitions.
Please share the links to the recordings of the Public Enquiry with your friends on social media. If you don’t have the time to follow the audios in full and you just want to hear one which will give you a good understanding of what is going on, listen to this, starting about eight or nine minutes in. Gregory Jones QC working on Mr Farrington and exposing the whole nonsense as a house built on sand. It’s also a jolly good laugh. I posted it to a friend last night and said ‘If you start listening to this you won’t be able to stop until it’s over’ and he tried to listen to only ten minutes before going to bed, but he couldn’t tear himself away from it and listened to the whole thing just short of an hour and a half. The session following is almost as good!