A question of time at this festive time of year

Posted On 23 Dec 2018 at 12:27 pm

Asked at a meeting if the Labour administration’s policy on Cityclean reorganisation was working, I could only blurt out “only time will tell”.

Sometimes in life the passage of time is the only way to decide these things. But what is “time”?

In life, “time” is simply what the clock reads – but this hides some scary underlying physics.

Then again, even physicists can’t agree what time is: Einstein told us that time and space are not constant and that the only true constant was the speed of light. Thanks Albie!

Philosopher Martin Heidegger thought we do not exist inside time and that we are time. Oh dear, Martin – not much help I am afraid!

With much talk about poor productivity in the UK – essentially the “time” it takes to make stuff or do something useful – new figures from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development suggests that the “productivity gap” between the UK and other economies is smaller than previously thought.

Possible explanations include poor UK management, low capital investment and sometimes just blaming “the Tories”.

It turns out, however, that British productivity is much higher, as we measure the time spent doing things in a different way. So much for trusting the views of economists!

As a definition, “the indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present and future” has some merit and, in that respect, I must remember that it is that “time” of year again when it is customary to hope that, whatever your faith or label you give to the next few days (my preference is Christmas), you have a restful and peaceful time until the world goes crazy again in the new year.

And, lest I forget to mention it, next May it will be that “time” again to vote in a new council for Brighton and Hove.

We are living in times of great uncertainty but, much like the productivity figures, I won’t trust the views of experts who claim the world is about to end.

With Labour in thrall to the hard-left, it will be the time for sensible politicians – like me – who occupy the centre-ground – to step up and offer a future that is right for the city”.

Councillor Tony Janio is the leader of the opposition Conservatives on Brighton and Hove City Council.

  1. Christopher Hawtree Reply

    Kipling’s “the unforgiving minute”?

    Or, I suppose in Council terms, unforgiving minutes.

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