February 28th was Bristol City Council’s Budget setting meeting and a couple of AFers went along to view the proceedings (sometimes the term “get a job” is apt ).
LibDem Councilor Alex Woodman was clearly as bored as we were with the bureaucracy and figures and was playing around on twitter, as was one of our members. The following coloured text is directly transcribed from the conversation that ensued after one of our members heckled the meeting.
Cllr Woodman: Shame that more members of the public insist on interrupting meeting. Last year led to gallery being cleared. Not good for democracy #BCCBudget
(Last year somebody got arrested for heckling the budget meeting using a law put in place to prevent Suffragettes disrupting meetings)
AFed Member: @CllrAlexWoodman That’s a bit rich esp give Lib Dems have been interupting more.
Cllr Woodman: I Have been democratically elected by the people in my ward and have a right to speak and vote here.
Cllr Woodman: People like you on the other hand, show up, heckle, interupt, and abuse with no mandate.
AFed Member: @CllrAlexWoodman Perhaps you should do your job and pay attention to the debate instead of fucking around on your phone.
Cllr Woodman: The Fact I’m tweeting about what others are saying suggests I am paying attention.
AFed Member: @CllrAlexWoodman You seem to like the word democracy, go do some of it.
Cllr Woodman: I do. I stand for election and hold myself accountable to the people who elect me
Cllr Woodman: That means not being bullied or heckled into doing what you say just because you shout and swear.
(At this point, after stating that heckling was un-democratic Councillor Woodman began to heckle the other councillors)
AFed Member: @CllrAlexWoodman Just saw you heckling, thought that was un-democratic?
Cllr Woodman: Yes, when it comes from you. I’ve been elected to sit in this chamber.
AFed Member: It’s exactly this attitude from politicians that makes people hate them. You aren’t special, you’re just a man.
Cllr Woodman: Didn’t say I’m special. I just pointed out that I’m here to represent 10k people. Who do you represent besides yourself?
AFed Member: Just because 10k people decided you were the lease terrible option doesn’t mean you represent them.
Cllr Woodman: Perhaps next time then you should stand against me as you clearly think you are a better option for them.
AFed Member: No I don’t think anyone should stand for election, when they do idiots like you end up doing something important
Cllr Woodman: So how do you propose that Government should run? Or are you one of those silly naïve anarchists?
AFed Member: Libertarian Communist since you ask, similar but not quite the same, are you one of those turncoat, closet Tory Lib-dems?
Cllr Woodman: “Libertarian Communist” is a meaningless contradiction in terms. Just code for “doesn’t live in the real world”.
AFed Member: And that statement was code for “I don’t know anything about communism but I see no reason not to spout a load of shit.”
(Cllr Woodman now seems to make out he is more intelligent than the ten thousand people he claims to represent based on his privileged education.)
Cllr Woodman: Degree in politics actually. Clearly know far more about it than you!
AFed Member: A degree in politics and you still decided to join the libdems, you really are stupid.
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