Every day this week, I will be publishing a new blog as part of a series focusing on the idea of political DNA. In order for us to understand what is meant by 'political DNA' in the Jersey context, it is first necessary for us to understand the historical context of Jersey Politics and how it relates and still very much affects the set up (and struggles) we have today. Forthcoming blogs will, thus, look at the immediate post war elections; the creation and subsequent dismantling of political parties. We will also discuss the REAL reason that Ben Shenton is not standing for election and how it relates to his party allegiance, rather than anything else. And also why the Black and White Party have reverted to such desperate tactics as needing the former Bailiff to stand for election. The common theme will be - party politics DOES exist in Jersey - and the Establishment (who also very much exist) are exceptionally skilled at manipulating the Jersey public and the system to put their boys into power and keep them there. This will also involve a posting on why the machine was so against a reduction in Senators - but moreover what it entailed - a single election day, where the Chief Minister would have to face election will all other representatives.
To start the ball rolling, I am pleased to present the first part of a video kindly filmed by Tom Gruchy featuring former St Brelade No. 2 Deputy, Gary Matthews and the current Deputy (me). Gary was elected in 1993 and served one term as a deputy, elected with a small group of others from the 'Green Party.' In his short time in the States, Gary was an articulate and vocal States Member, who campaigned on many issues which were not 'popular' at the time, such as equality, anti-discrimination, women's rights, worker's rights and a whole variety of social and environmental issues, which were on few politicians' agenda at the time. Moreover, he attempted to uncover corruption and alleged malpractice relating to one senior politician who had (should I say allegedly?) used the States Chamber to bring forward unnecessary legislation, of no benefit to Jersey, which financially benefited his Law Firm and the City of London. As a result of speaking out on this an other issues, he was punished by the local media (who owned the JEP at the time?) and labelled an enemy of Jersey. All this happened at the same time that then Senator Stuart Syvret was also kicked out of the Chamber for making comments about Senator Reg Jeune's involvement in the Limited Liability Partnership fiasco . Fortunately for him, Stuart was not up for election at the time and later went on to top the poll when we was eventually kicked out.
So without further ado, I present the first video. I apologize if the quality is not great. Also have the sun in my eyes and wind in my hair, so not ideal.... Enjoy.