Yelping like a scalded dog, Joe "Tea & Sympathy" Anderson has called UNESCO's decision on Liverpool's World Heritage status "premature" (http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/liverpool-news/local-news/2012/06/27/world-heritage-committee-places-liverpool-on-list-of-world-heritage-in-danger-100252-31268539/ ).
The reason for Joe's shrieks of indignation? Partly a dawning realisation that UNESCO aren't messing about & mean what they say, & partly the fact that Whitehall has yet to approve the Liverpool Waters behemoth (just savour the irony of a Labour leader -- a Labour leader! -- invoking the ConDem cutters to justify his position). Just read through this cliche-ridden & defensive missive from Joe's office:
"We also believe the safeguards which were put in place when [Liverpool Waters] was considered by the planning committee will ensure that the World Heritage site is protected.
"The city council is continuing to discuss the plans with the developers and other interested parties and have always firmly believed that Liverpool can retain its World Heritage status while sensitively developing the derelict docklands.
"It is important to note that although this decision has been made, it does not mean that Liverpool is in imminent danger of having its status removed.
"This is a long term development which will take several decades to complete and as it progresses we will continue to work to ensure that we can reach a situation which satisfies all parties."
Wading through such tortuous syntax isn't pleasant, but let's pick our way through it anyway. The first sentence is contradictory; UNESCO have made it crystal clear that Liverpool Waters will mean the end of the city's World Heritage status. Furthermore, the decision by the city council to back the Liverpool Waters project was accompanied by a dismissive quote from Mayor Anderson himself back in January about World Heritage status amounting to no more than "a certificate on the wall in the Town Hall" (http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/liverpool-news/local-news/2012/01/02/liverpool-council-leader-joe-anderson-says-city-would-sacrifice-world-heritage-status-for-liverpool-waters-scheme-in-new-year-report-100252-30044864/ ).
The second sentence continues along the road of contradiction while persisting with the fictitious claim that "other interested parties", ie., those largely opposed to the scheme, are currently being consulted. They aren't & Joe knows it. Moreover, the notion that the area will be developed "sensitively" by Peel is laughable.
The third sentence is driven more by panic than cool analysis.
The final sentence begins with a third-rate attempt to hit the ball into the long grass, as they say, & concludes with a sentiment which is vacuous in the extreme.
The consequences of proceeding with the Liverpool Waters monstrosity couldn't be clearer. Mayor Anderson could at least acknowledge that rather than hide behind hackneyed phrases & dispiriting jargon.