It’s obviously difficult to comment on Ed ‘completely useless‘ Vaizey’s speech at the SCL conference with only twitter feeds to go on. That said it’s hard to reconcile what’s been reported with the reality of the last four years.
One comment that does stand out is his apparent support for the establishment of a development agency for libraries. This from a minister who has all but abolished the Advisory Council on Libraries. I’m sure I am not the only one to see the irony of his ‘dreaming’ of a body to develop libraries while at the same time actively attempting to abolish a body that provides impartial advice on libraries!
Equally, his comments stating that the profession doesn’t accentuate the positive enough regarding library openings and refurbishments. Again this from someone who has overseen a particularly dark period for public libraries including widespread closures, de-professionalisation, and handing libraries over wholesale to unpaid amateurs to create a two-tier system. He has also consistently and steadfastly ignored his legal duty to ‘superintend’ or oversee library services provided by local authorities.
Last but by no means least, libraries are so important to him that he refuses to meet face-to-face with the professions professional body, Cilip.
As usual with Ed ‘completely useless‘ Vaizey his actions are far removed from his words.