Sunday, 28 June 2009

Anyone for Tennis?

I fear that it is no more than institutional nationalism driving the fans of Andy Murray. One can appreciate a certain degree of pride in the success of this gangly Scot, but for pure brilliance I am still staking my belief in Andy Roddick's chances. Yes, he is American. But what's wrong with that. IBM is also American and IBM delivers the most excellent scoring solutions to the All England Club. To demonstrate their efficacy I invite you to click this link . See what I mean? In one simple click those experts at IBM manage to misdirect you. But don't be disappointed. At least IBM has managed to produce a one-dimensional tennis game for Wimbledon fans who can't get the real thing. The strange thing is that IBM tennis players don't use rackets, they hit the ball with their head. This may account for many things. Anyway, back to Andy Roddick. The other winning factor in Roddick's sporting pedigree is his determination to back winners and be backed by them. That is why Andy wears the SAP logo with such obvious pride. Give it your all in the next few days, Rodders, and show the doubters what we're really made of. And don't roget to send your invoice in nice and early early so that SAP can deal with it efficiently.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Double Bonus

Not one, but TWO glowing red accolades to Somerset for the installation of SAP! My good friends at IBM assure me that "double-red" is the ultimate benchmark. Personally I think we should all be aiming for the future and a splendid quadruplicate.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Eady does it

I like a man in a wig, especially if he makes sensible decisions. Mr Justice Eady's reputation has just rocketed far beyond excellence in my estimation. In a ruling that will be viewed by many bloggers as a breach of their privacy the good judge has decided to allow a gale of fresh air to gust through the blogosphere. It will no longer be sufficient to assert that the internet is a place where anonymity can thrive. In a landmark decision, Mr Justice Eady refused to grant an order to protect the anonymity of a police officer who is the author of the NightJack blog. The officer, Richard Horton, 45, a detective constable with Lancashire Constabulary, had sought an injunction to stop The Times from revealing his name. In April Mr Horton was awarded the Orwell Prize for political writing, but the judges were unaware that he was using information about cases, some involving sex offences, that could be traced back to genuine prosecutions. Detective Constable Horton has now, rightly, been exposed. I intend to vigorously follow this important legal precedent and run the perpetrator of the weekly and obviously fake "ProperGander" blog to ground for his (or her) damnable cheek in pretending to be me. There is only one Official Alan Jones.

Saturday, 13 June 2009


When I called in the new Leader designate, Ken Maddock, last Monday it was always my intention to make his odyssey from opposition to power as stressless as possible. It is not easy to take on the reins of office after so long as a mere onlooker. I gave him some home truths and warned him of the difficulties ahead. I was struck by his innocent expression and winning smile. It was at this point in our conversation that I made a small but very generous offer. "Why not move into my offce, Ken. You will need the space for meetings. Politics must be consensual. But a Chief Executive merely makes up his mind and acts alone." Ken readily accepted and I have already located a bijou bolt-hole elsewhere in County Hall where I will continue to guide us all towards the goals of still greater excellence.

Friday, 12 June 2009

Morebath-to-Brighton Race

The challenge is irresistable! A road race from the lovely village of Morebath (just over the Devon border) all the way to the fair southern seaside city of Brighton. I intend to ride from the start and be up with the best at the finish. I offer generous sponsorship to those who are prepared to join me. The race must be completed by June 24th - conveniently timed to coincide with the close of entries for Brighton's new Chief Executive.Come on boys and girls. Brighton is the acknowledged national home of gender reassignment and by the time I have pedalled a few miles it is a working certainty that my excellent toned torso will already have been permanently reassigned - without the need of surgery.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

Philosophy and politics

I have long been an ardent follower of the thoughts and beliefs that made Edmund Burke such a singular politician. My musings this week in Proper Gander were written before the election results came in. Now that the people have decided, I can allow myself some more Burkeian reflections. Indeed, when the new Council Leader meets me on Monday, I intend to offer my unswerving loyalty to his cause and quote my mentor yet again. He once wrote: "You can never plan the future by the past" How true this is and how much it has been my inner call-to-arms since I arrived in Somerset in 2003. I have sought to innovate with originality and flair. I have won for Somerset the glittering accolades that previously eluded them. I have secured partnerships, changed minds and introduced adventurous thinking. I am, just like Edmund Burke, a true creative. Yes, I have been detracted. Yes, I have sometimes erred. But I would defend my record against all critics. And I urge Ken Maddock to leave well alone and ignore the only quotation by which Edmund Burke is always remembered: ‘All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing’

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Make a date with me

Are you busy at 3pm on Thursday June 25th - I know I am!

  • Case Study Session - Effective Recruitment, Strong Communities, Better Business - Local Employment Partnerships Around the UK

  • Tackling local employment and welfare issues through partnerships
    The need for community-based solutions

  • Making local and multi-area agreements work - reviewing and improving private, public and third sector links

  • Somerset County Council - the trailblazer for LEP's

  • The role of welfare and referral staff in moving individuals into training and skills

  • Assisting the long term unemployed and those receiving disability incapacity benefits

  • Setting and achieving local improvement targets - committing a talented workforce

  • Releasing the skills potential of all local residents - maintaining a vibrant economy

  • Improving access and opportunities to work through the personalisation of service provision

It is good to know that my most excellent private conference services continue to be in great demand. My power points are legendary. Please direct any future requests to my agent