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Scottish Referendum

The Miners Strike of 1982-84

The Miners Strike of 1982-84

“As painful as it was at the time , the closing of the mines was probably the best policy. If it hadn’t happened would Scotland still be producing expensive coal that no one could afford , all at tax-payers expense? It was a bitter pill at the time but in hindsight it was probably the correct decision.”

The coal industry was in decline from around 1960. Harold Wilson’s government closed many collieries in Scotland and Wales and some in England. The closures were handled well, many miners and their families transferred to collieries in England and new smaller industries were introduced into, newly built, “campus towns” mitigating damage to communities.

At the beginning of the eighties the Thatcher government, (spoiling for a fight with the coal miners) driven by dogma, issued spoiler information to miners advising the intention was to close 20 colleries. Secret government papers were passed to Arthur Scargill indicating the scale of closures was to be in excess of 75 colleries. Government denied this. Scargill consulted the miners who, realizing all would be lost if the massive closure list was actioned voted for, “Strike action”.

The Strike, which lasted over a year brought terrible hardship to miners and their families, (wives were denied social assistance, after the personal intervention of Mrs Thatcher). Communities were destroyed. Father was set against son. Police, “flying squads”, unheard of in peacetime, smothered mining communities denying freedom of movement of men, women and children, reminiscent of Germany in the 1930’s. Thatcher, describing the miners as, “the enemy within”, released the full might of secret services on mining communities the damaging effects of which still exist today.

After the, “strike collapsed” Thatcher executed her revenge. The bulk of the UK’s collieries were closed. Many thousands of miners were thrown onto the dole never to work again. Mining communities were dismantled by denial to them of any new industry. Younger families emigrated to Australia, Canada and New Zealand joining relations that had suffered similar fates in the past.

Thatcher funded her war on the miners using revenue from Scottish oil. Her preference being that miners should live and die, “on the dole” punishment for the crime of daring to resist her and the Tory party.

Tory spin on coal masks fact that 80 per cent of coal jobs were lost under Thatcher


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25549596

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Scottish Referendum

Grangemouth Refinery Workforce Saved From the Dole by Alex Salmond then kicked in the Teeth by Unite Union in the Independence Referendum

 

 

Ratcliffe Millionaire owner of INEOS

 

 

Remember The Grangemouth Refinery Crisis

The crisis first came to the attention of the Scottish public through a series of press releases exposing gerrymandering by UNITE, who had packed the local election committee, ensuring election of a UNITE member to the status of official parliamentary candidate, (2015 election) for Falkirk West Labour Party.

Extensive inquiry by Labour Party investigators, (sent from England) concluded there was, “no doubt” that United had attempted to manipulate the selection process.

All sorts of shenanigans came to light, involving UNITE and Labour Party members of distinction.

Johan Lamont, leader of the Labour Party in Scotland, preferring to keep her counsel, provided scarce comment, (throughout the scandal), disappointing Labour Party supporters.

 

 

 

Just about the same time it came to light that UNITE had decided upon strike action at the Grangemouth refinery claiming workers were fed up with oppressive management and poor financial rewards.

A period of charge and counter-charge followed, at the end of which management advised the plant would be closed down throwing the entire workforce onto the dole.

 

 

 

Pressure, from a range of interested parties, (excluding Labour) was applied requesting that Alex Salmond, (First Minister) nationalize Grangemouth thereby protecting the workers, saving an important industry.

His response was that whilst he was sympathetic to the cause of the workers, he had no authority to direct the final outcome of the dispute since issues pertaining to energy were reserved to Westminster and there had been no indication of interest, from that place.

But he went on to advise that the Scottish Government had reported the matter to the Scottish Secretary, (Alistair Carmichael) gaining his support, permitting the Scottish government to enter into discussions with management and staff with the purpose of finding a way out of the difficulty.

 

 

 

Alex Salmond, (First Minister) and a team drawn from the Scottish Government worked long hours and many days, with the purpose of achieving a solution to the difficulties, against an movable deadline imposed by management.

And, at the eleventh hour a breakthrough was achieved providing opportunity for change acceptable to management, staff and a reluctant union.

The agreement committed staff to a 3 year, “no strike” period coupled with a reduction in working terms and conditions reflecting the reality of a downturn in the business of the Company.

 

 

 

Johan Lamont and the Labour Party remained strangely silent throughout the confrontation giving credence to views that the Party had, “washed it’s hands of the workers” and the UNITE union at Grangemouth. How sad.

The September referendum provided opportunity for reflection by  Scots employed with companies supporting union representation that, “when the chips were down” the Labour Party in Scotland turned it’s back on the workers leaving them in the lurch, to be rescued by Alec Salmon..

In a final act of betrayal the Unite Union instructed its membership to vote “No” in the referendum.

A kick in the teeth for Scotland and the man who had rescued them from the dole.

 

 

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Scottish Referendum

Care Data Scheme – Be Afraid Private Healthcare

Care Data Scheme – Be Afraid Private Healthcare

The, much vilified “Care Data” scheme, in place in England from the start of the year, has attracted minimal publicity in Scotland, since it can only be introduced in Scotland with the support of the Scottish Parliament.

In the event of a, “no” vote in the September referendum it is intended that there will be a scheme, “roll-out” in 2015. Scotland must be able, (through consultation with the electorate) to decide upon any need and benefits of collection of excessive amounts of personal health data and just who might be afforded access. Only a, “yes” vote in the referendum will ensure this.

Those who care about their privacy should be greatly concerned since the measures will ensure provision of all aspects of an individuals medical records to anyone that has £1 to spare and can prove need of the information. eg. Insurance companies, (for £1) will be able to access information which might affect the performance of an insurance policy in the event a person forgot to advise they had been treated for an ingrowing toenail!!!

The entire population of England has been data entered on a central database. It is for the individual to go to their Doctor and register a wish to, “opt-out).

First off view the video; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNJl9EEcsoE

Then view the websites and read.

Click to access cd-stakeholder-lett.pdf


http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/your-practice/practice-topics/it/private-companies-set-for-access-to-patient-data-for-just-1/20003879.article
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-16026827

Categories
Scottish Referendum

The UK Common Travel Area

The UK Common Travel Area

A leading member of the, “no” campaign, Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael today launched a UK government analysis paper, “Borders and Citizenship.” To say the content was unadulterated drivel would be giving it undeserved credence. Scotland is and will, (after independence) remain to be a member of the, “Common Travel Area” CTA.

Heaping ridicule onto the unfortunate Mr Carmichael, a Republic of Ireland, (fellow members of the CTA) spokesman stated, “The CTA in no way alters our control over immigration or visa matters and who can and cannot enter or reside in Ireland.”

http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/top-stories/scottish-independence-border-passport-check-claim-1-3280801

Mr Carmichael compounded his error by adding an unnecessary racist aside, warning that the Scottish Government’s plans to allow expat applicants with Scottish Grandparents, Scottish Citizenship could result in five million people living abroad becoming entitled to becoming a Scottish citizen. And the point is!!!

Mr Carmichael might have been better advised to take a, “wee peek” at the attached chart which provides a detailed picture of population changes, world wide in the five year’s 2005-2010. Noteworthy is the flow of over one million immigrants to the UK, (mainly England) from Pakistan, Bangladesh and India. By any reckoning that expansion will provide a headache for Westminster many times greater than the few immigrants likely to take up the offer of Scottish citizenship.

http://qz.com/192440/where-everyone-in-the-world-is-migrating-in-one-gorgeous-chart/

Categories
Scottish Referendum

At Last Honest Tories Speak the Truth

At Last Honest Tories Speak the Truth

View the videos then decide. If you support a spend of £200Billion on, “A Much Bigger and More Destructive Nuclear Submarine Launched Nuclear Deterrent” to be Based at Faslane then vote, “no” in the referendum. If you agree with the views of the much experienced politicians and the bulk of Scottish voters then vote, “Yes” in the referendum.

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/dec/15/tory-james-arbuthnot-trident-doubts?commentpage=2
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20179604

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Scottish Referendum

Oil Off The West Coast of Scotland

Oil Off The West Coast of Scotland

Waters off the the West Coast of Scotland and deep harbour ports of the Clyde were, (many year’s ago) declared by Westminster to be of immense strategic importance to the MOD and the USA. Following up the MOD announced that the area would provide a permanent base for Trident and nuclear submarines and extensive sheltered training areas for conventional submarines and other naval vessels.

Not long after oil and gas was discovered then developed, in the North Sea providing tremendous financial benefits to the UK, (but not to Scotland).

At around that time, it was projected, by a number of exploratory searches that there were even larger oil and gas deposits, (in place and undeveloped) in abundance off the West coast of Scotland, (confirmed by recent discovery of a substantial oilfield off the coast of Antrim, extending into Scottish waters.

Enter the spoiler, (the MOD) who ensured, (through Westminster intervention) implementation of a permanent bann preventing any exploration and development of oil and/or gas fields off or on-shore in the waters off the entire West coast of Scotland.

The entire matter was subsequently deemed to be, “Top Secret” and, (under the 30 year rule) all information was with-held from the Scottish public. Many supporting documents were subsequently lost or destroyed but information gained by volunteers, through time consuming research of, “Scottish Archives” confirms all of the foregoing to be fact.

It became necessary to address the subject of shipping traffic and ship building on the Clyde, which was noisy and did not provide a best fit for the increasing military presence in the area. It was decided that, Clyde ship building would be primarily confined to MOD contracts drastically reducing the need for a large skilled shipbuilding workforce. Mainline passenger shipping would be reduced, transferring activity to Liverpool.

Westminster, (Thatcher) further decided Scotland should be stripped of all industrial activity, transferring this to England. To facilitate the measure she used Scotland’s oil revenues providing finance sufficient to fund a massive expansion of long term unemployment. In a matter of months Thatcher destroyed Scotland’s industry and sentenced millions to a lifetime on the dole.

Adding insult to agony, (retention and projected further expansion) of defence arrangements by successive UK governments has been the cause of increasing stress within the Scottish population concerned about unreported or understated recurring radiation leaks and scares. This together with the threat of a, “First Strike” which would destroy Glasgow and the entire West Coast of Scotland, and two thirds of the population of Scotland is too horrendous to contemplate, but the possibility needs to be factored into future arrangements for decommissioning of the entire unwanted set-up. The under noted articles are worth reading;

https://www.facebook.com/notes/scotlands-big-yesno-debate/fact-oil-boom-blocked-on-the-firth-of-clyde-by-the-mod-in-the-80s/531769406913923

http://www.sundaypost.com/news-views/scotland/did-mod-block-oil-boom-in-the-firth-of-clyde-1.138569

http://www.sundaypost.com/news-views/scotland/west-coast-oil-boom-was-blocked-by-mod-1.151449

http://www.virtualhunterston.eu.org/proposedrefinery6.htm

In my view the way is clear. Vote, “Yes” in the referendum. Provide support to the first truly independent Scottish Government negotiating removal of nuclear warheads from Scotland. The USA is scheduled to make other arrangements by 2017, following introduction of new nuclear delivery systems and there is no reason nuclear submarines could not continue to use the existing facilities until that time. England would need to decide upon retention of their 2 nuclear submarines.

Without delay the Scottish Government should dismantle the past awarding contracts to companies, allowing exploration and development of previously identified substantial oil and gas reserves off the West coast of Scotland. Very soon after Glasgow will become the base for major oil companies mirroring Aberdeen, which has the lowest unemployment figures in Scotland and where poverty, on the scale brutally imposed on Glasgow and other towns in the West of Scotland has never been the case.

Categories
Scottish Referendum

The Independence Of Scottish Charities

The Independence Of Scottish Charities

Devolution affords Scottish charities the opportunity to forge their own relationships with MSPs providing them with access to parliament in a way they have never had before. This freedom of access does not have the support of many UK, (London) controlled charities who are unwilling to cede power to their Scottish branches.

In 200* The Scottish ******** ******** charity management team, submitted a proposal, (to the UK umbrella organization) that the charity should be autonomous of England, including control of financial contributions made in Scotland. This was rejected leaving the Scottish management team and staff well and truly deflated. A significant number of people, (who had been volunteers actively supporting the charity) resigned and the Scottish management team were suspended. A number of key managers then left the charity.

An important patron of the charity in Scotland, who, in addition to provision of moral and physical support, had provided significant financial donations resigned her position, citing distracting and demoralizing seemingly endless internal rows with the charity’s London office. Paraphrasing the statement of resignation the Patron said;

“I have not taken the decision to quit my position as patron lightly. In the last year the Scottish team and myself initiated and attended a mediation session, in the hope of sorting out long-standing and escalating conflicts between the Scottish management team and officers in London, driven by the imposition of changes from England. Unfortunately little was achieved. With mounting frustration and disappointment, I have been witness to the resignations of immensely dedicated people within the Scottish ******** ******** and the increasing demoralization of staff whom I have come to know and admire over the ten years of our association.”

The suspended, (shortly after ex-Chairman) of the charity in Scotland briefed staff that the patron might be persuaded to reconsider standing down if the charity cut its ties with London.

London based controllers then instructed members of the charity in Scotland that a breakaway would result in a loss of £550,000 research grant finance. A postal ballot was then conducted, 25% of the membership voted, a majority favoured retaining the status quo, (Pity a 40% overall majority wasn’t written into the ballot since around 85% of the membership either abstained or voted for independence from England.)

There is much to admire about the leadership of the Scottish charity and the strongly worded statement of the patron, who clearly fully supports independence from London as the best way forward for the charity.

The patron!! JK Rowling
The Charity!! The Multiple Sclerosis Society Scotland
The Source!! (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/rowling-quits-multiple-sclerosis-charity-over-angloscottish-feud-1666842.html)

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Scottish Referendum

Gordon Brown & George Robertson Give the UK Defence Away

George in full flow. He has the audacity to attack persons who offered a personal look forward to the future size and shape of Scottish defence forces. But he was responsible for giving away the UK defence force’s entire research programme for a pittance, and against the wishes of just about anyone with any sense. His scathing put-down of his nation is revealing since it mirrors that of Labour politicians presently in Westminster.

Gordon Brown & George Robertson Give the UK Defence Away

Two names from the past(Gordon Brown & George Robertson) have recently been actively involved in support of the, “no” campaign. But in giving thought to their views, (tainted by their long service) with the Labour Party in Westminster I remembered the incident, 1997 not long after the Labour Party took office, at which time the two of them contributed to the severe damage of the much vaunted, “UK/USA special relationship.” The UK National Audit Office (NAO, investigated the circumstances resulting in the part – privatization of an important part of the Defence Department.

At interview, Lord Gilbert, former Minister of Procurement for the UK Defence Department, (briefing a National Audit Office investigation team), advised he had warned, (before the sale) that the Treasury Department’s (Gordon Brown’s) proposed sell-off, to a US private equity company of the UK Defence Department’s research arm was, “a disaster in the making” that would severely damage the, “special relationship” between the UK and US. He further stated he had personally warned the UK Defence Secretary (Lord Robertson) that the sale would be a, “bloody scandal” but the stake in the agency was subsequently sold. Read the article;

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Auditors+condemn+rushed+MoD+sale+that+turned+civil+servants+into…-a01611536149

Careful note should be made of the companies involved since many of them feature in, Wikipedia pages together with many Westminster politicians.

Vote, “yes” to independence so that we might rid Scotland of the perils of Westminster.

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Scottish Referendum

The Calton Hill Declaration (Scottish: Tory, Labour and Liberal Party Leaders)

The Calton Hill Declaration (Scottish: Tory, Labour and Liberal Party Leaders)

The famous Calton Hill folly in Edinburgh, (modelled on the Parthenon in Athens) commissioned, (was to be built, in memorium to many thousands of Scot’s service personnel sacrificed, in war, by ambitious Westminster politicians) but never finished, (money was diverted away from the project to fund another war) was today the unfortunate choice of venue of the leaders of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, Scottish Labour Party and the Scottish Conservatives, the (wee3) to declare their joint support for more powers to be devolved to Scotland, (in the event of a ‘no’ vote). Details of any new powers were not to hand for publication/discussion since the, “wee3)” are in no position to deliver anything but hot air. Paraphrasing parts of their joint statement;

1. Setting out their jointly held views they stated, “We live in the same house, but this has never been a country that has demanded we conform to the same house rules”.

Comment. I expect they are referring to the Westminster Parliament, in which a majority of those sent to represent constituents seemingly regard house rules as being in place, to be ignored or twisted or abused, (eg. expenses) to suit their own or their Party’s aims and aspirations. Clearly the views of the (wee3) echo that of their colleagues in Westminster. A very worrying attitude indeed.

2. They added, “all three of us have said we will legislate as soon as possible afterwards. No ifs, no buts – we are all committed to deliver.”

Comment. Deliver what!!! Nothing!! The, (wee3) have no authority to devolve or to legislate anything. Such powers rest with their, “Political Masters” in Westminster and, to date, (less than a year from the next General Election) there has been very little, if any, devolution discussion or consensus within any of the three England based political party’s with result there has been no cross party dialogue. The, (wee3) party’s operating in Scotland are mildly autonomous extensions of their English colleagues, but they have no executive policy as it pertains to Westminster. Beware of voting for, “jam tomorrow”. A “no” vote gained on empty promises will be, a hard pill to swallow” for, “Yes” voters, but the harsh punishment that will be meted out in the year’s to come will be very painful. Westminster does not look kindly upon any nation that might dare to, “rock their boat”.

3. Seeking understanding and forgiveness of the Scottish electorate the (WEE3) further stated, “we all accept, for differing reasons, that Westmister has got things wrong in the past”, “but it, (presumably the MP’s & non-elected Lords) learns and builds together, indeed the Union is evolving allowing, “space and freedom for England and Scotland prosper and thrive.”

Comment. A joke!!! Scotland contributes finance, through taxation and other commercial activities, to Westminster, well in excess of that which it is allocated. Many of our young men and women, (continue to die and/or suffer terrible injury) after being sent to war on the orders of Westminster despite Scotland’s people voting against said war’s. Large sections of our population continue to live and die early deaths due to poverty, brought about by policies ordered by successive Westminster governments elected by England but rejected by Scotland. Infant mortality in Scotland is excessively high.

Vote, “Yes” to independence Don’t be fooled.

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Scottish Referendum

The UK and War – A Necessary Thing?

The UK and War – A Necessary Thing?

It is a fact that for most of the 307 years the, “Acts of Union” treaty has been in place the philosophy of the Westminster government has been one of, “conquer or be conquered”. In the prevailing male dominated society that is the UK, recurring wars are deemed to be necessary, exciting, well recommended and a natural extension of the state. To achieve fulfillment men need to die in the glory that is war. Peace, on the other hand is, (in the view of Westminster) always a bad thing since the morals of the people become corrupt as they enjoy a lifestyle, (happiness and well being) at odds with the prevailing wishes of the Westminster government.

A realistic alternative to war was established in 1945 and agreed to by all nations – The United Nations – A charter spelled out the fundamental aims of the body. It states;

“We the peoples of the United Nations determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small, and to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained, and to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom, and for these ends to practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbours, and to unite our strength to maintain international peace and security, and to ensure, by the acceptance of principles and the institution of methods, that armed force shall not be used, save in the common interest, and to employ international machinery for the promotion of the economic and social advancement of all peoples, have resolved to combine our efforts to accomplish these aims.”

Westminster Simply Changes the Name-There’s no Such Thing As War

War, is a much valued tool, through which Westminster politicians impose their will upon nations, other than their own, and they are determined not be denied their conflicts. War is erased from political and military vocabulary and replaced with, “humanitarian action” providing a mechanism allowing the USA, assisted by the UK to, (in support of the special relationship) commit our armed forces to the provision of charitable and extraordinarily expensive assistance, easing the burden of oppression wherever in the world it might surface. Media outlets are now an extension of the state, (witness BBC Scotland’s biased coverage of the referendum campaign). There are no, “War Correspondents” only, “embedded journalists” who produce heavily censored and sanitized reports. Where targets used to be, “bombed into submission” they are now subject to, “surgical strikes” creating a false premise that such actions are, “healing” by their nature. The death of civilians and massive destruction of dwellings is now reported as, “collateral damage”.

What a confusion, “War is Peace and peace is war” George Orwell