Folks, as we have seen, Transport For London have initiated a public consultation, to apparently cast a net of concern and wider opinion, on how the mini cab trade should be managed.
It is drafted as though somebody had just thought up a “mini cab service” in the capital, and TFL, unsure of what they should do, are requesting ideas of how it should be perceived to run ! That isn’t probably too far from the truth actually !
As my closer colleagues indeed know, I have served with the Civil Service, to quite a senior level of command. And I can tell you, it is unfaithful, perfidious shite such as this, that eventually forced me to leave, and return to a more rational and authentic world.
Not only that, my life experiences in the military were of the prehistoric order of, if you can’t do it, then bollox, your’e no good to us ! That’s the sort of selection process I had been mainly used to, for most of my life !
So picture the scene then. I’m suited and booted, boned up for two months previously on what I thought I needed to know, and attend the hotel at Gatwick, hoping I’m one of the chosen ones.
You think I’m joking don’t you ? Well read on, there’s more. Out of pure embarrassment, I guess the geezer next to me to be Peter or something, I cant remember. Anyway, we have to write it down on a bit of paper. We hand the paper in to the muppet taking the “exam” and he looks at them. We are then instructed to reveal our true names by showing the name badges that we were issued with on entry to the venue. If I thought I was embarrassed earlier, how embarrassed do you think I was when the “leader” announces that four of us in the room correctly guessed the person’s name sitting next to them.
I WAS ONE OF THE FOUR MUGS WHO HAD NOT ONLY PLAYED THIS LUDICROUS RECRUITMENT SHITE GAME, BUT OUT OF PURE “LUCK”, GOT THE BUGGER RIGHT !!
Now, don’t get me wrong, I am all for a little ice breaker when groups of people meet up for the first time. Have a laugh, a bit of team work and all that. It gets the pace going. But throughout my service with senior civil service (I got the job by the way) this role play bollox is not only rife, but is the foundation and yardstick on how candidates are selected, progressed and trained through the civil service system.
When I was completing my training at The Guards Depot in Pirbright, you either got over the wall with full kit on carrying a machine gun………or you didn’t ! End of story. No ifs, no buts no if onlys. You either got over the wall and progressed…… or you were home on the next train tomorrow. There are plenty of ex Guardsmen in our cab trade that will confirm this, just you ask them.
Anyway and I swear on my kids lives, a few weeks into the training, we were split into groups of three. The winning team of the day were actually given a lollipop each ! Yes, you read that right….a lollypop. One of those hard boiled sweet things on the end of a stick with a wrapper on it. Teams used to sulk if they didn’t get one ! On my kid’s lives….honestly, that is the truth !
Now, I am going to tell you something that you may find amazing. I am going to tell you something, that makes this Consultation paper that TFL have issued, more relevant. This will come as even more of a surprise to my 25000 self employed, self motivated, sole decision making, professional London Taxi driver colleagues, who have to think on their feet and make decisions daily.
This bullshit and bollox that the Civil Service use for recruitment, appointment, progress and training………….ACTUALLY WORKS !!
IT ACTUALLY EFFING WORKS, FOLKS !!! Unless you are me of course, or three or four of my civil service colleagues who were ex job from Firearms or other units, who could see straight through this juvenile, immature, short focused twaddle. IT ACTUALLY WORKS.
Now, with this inside information from me, your colleague Semtex, I urge you to take anything and everything that City Hall and TFL tell you, with a shovel full of salt. These “exercises” of nonsense, are designed and mapped by Civil Service spinners, to give the illusion of the aforementioned authorities, taking notice and actually wanting to improve things.
Their brief is : Give these nuisances something to get their teeth into They love the sound of their own speil. They will get stuck into this and fight over it between themselves. Soon as they take their eye off us and onto trying to have us over on this paper, start dismantling their trade behind their backs. In other words……Give them a lollypop !
All the while we are democratically conforming to the consultation, meeting up to discuss progress, meeting up to discuss the finer points………barristers, advisors, commissioners and consultants working for the Men Who Have Come To Kill Us, are dismantling our trade to a point whereby our bridges back to safety have been blown up behind us.
Trust me, this consultation is more about shutting our trade up for the time being, than what they really want to do with mini cabs.
Remember The Cabby’s Cabinet ?
Reading through this latest plan to stall us, one question on the consultation riled me more than many of the others. I quote it:
22 Do you consider that TfL should introduce a requirement for private hire driver applicants to be able to speak English to a certain standard? If so, what should this requirement be and what criteria should we set to determine how applicants meet this criteria?
To facilitate the provision of safe travel for those attending nightclubs and other late night entertainment venues, TfL has allowed private hire operating centres to be licensed for such venues.
There have been cases in which operators’ staff have accepted bookings and touted (approaching prospective customers) outside venues. TfL receive a number of complaints about PHVs parking and waiting in the vicinity of operating centres, particularly late at night.
For almost 400 years, London have had a proud and iconic Taxi Service, known and respected in every corner of the globe. For centuries, we have driven the public, sportsmen and women, film stars, personalities, business people, clubbers, revellers, professionals, diplomats, and even royalty……to their destinations in safety, comfort, skill and elite professionalism !
So why then do these two bob, crafty, manipulating, untrustworthy, lolly pop administering snides at TFL and City Hall, want to replace us with non-English Speaking, untrained, unaccountable, dangerous imposters ?
I will tell you. They are worth more money to them than we are. they are easier to control by virtue that most of them have so much to hide, that they daren’t rock the boat and demand anything. As a result, min cab drivers and operators will by their sheer numbers put financial bonuses in the pockets of the hierarchy who license them.
As Virgil “The Turk” Sollozzo said to Don Corleone after he did his best to kill him. “Its only business, Vito. You know that, don’t you?”.
Fortunately for the proud and established Corleone family, they had the moral fibre and spunk to come back and get their retribution.
I wonder if we will ?…………We shall have to wait and see, wont we?
Stay safe all. Be lucky, and for those like myself who believe in him….God bless.