The Sin of Silence in Sin City Glasgow Part 3 – 2011-2012 Years of Scandal & Massive Pay-Offs

1. June 3 2011; Former MSP Frank McAveety urged to throw his hat into the ring as council candidate for Glasgow Council 2012. In reply to a lukewarm report indicating McAveety might return a local voter offered advice.

a. Anonymous; I found your recent post somewhat bemusing. I’m a committed and dedicated Labour Party activist and I can assure you that there is little support nor desire for Frank McAveety to play an active part in Labour Party politics especially in the east end of Glasgow. Whilst Frank certainly has an impressive curriculum vitae it is exactly that – an over exaggerated, selective account of his career littered with half-truths, lies and conveniently forgotten mishaps. Over Frank’s three terms as MSP for Shettleston the constituency has gone from being the safest Labour seat in Glasgow to the SNPs second home in Glasgow (after Glasgow Southside, a new constituency made up of a significant part of Frank’s previous constituency before boundary changes).

b. If Frank and his circle of sidekicks can’t see this as a major rejection by the electorate then he (and the Labour Party) are as out of touch and egotistical as the Scottish National Party have led the party to believe over recent months. The electorate want a representative who is committed to their constituents – not their own journey up the greasy political pole, and by-god Shettleston with its abhorrent health, crime and housing figures needs a representative who puts people before power. If any lessons are to be learned – this is it! Sadly these lessons haven’t. Selection panels haven’t even opened, candidates yet to be selected and votes won’t be cast of another year, yet there is speculation that Frank will take on the leadership of Glasgow City Council.

c. It is now time for Frank, and all of his Labour Party colleagues who lost their seat’s to start to show some humility and admit defeat. It is a politicians job to win elections – they failed! It is now time for our new thinkers, young talents and experienced activists to stand up and challenge the SNP, otherwise our Party will be even more stale in 5 years time than it was this year and there will be at least one more vote for the SNP – my vote! http://glasgowunihumanrights.blogspot.co.uk/2011/06/former-msp-frank-mcaveety-urged-to.html

2. September 11 2011; McAveety is held off Labour list amid probe.

a. Ex-Minister and MSP Frank McAveety has been kept off Labour’s approved list of candidates for next year’s municipal elections amid a police probe into financial irregularities as it emerges a businessman, once jailed for an alleged duty-free fraud was deselected. Labour’s Glasgow branch has ruled Mr McAveety will have to be re-interviewed following the news last week that a city Councillor and former aide of the ex-MSP for Shettleston had contacted police about the use of public money at his constituency office. http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/political-news/mcaveety-is-held-off-labour-list-amid-probe.15217796

3. November 8 2011; Analysis: What on earth is going on in Glasgow Council? http://caledonianmercury.com/2010/08/11/analysis-what-on-earth-is-going-on-in-glasgow-council/009866

a. It is hard to look at the line of extraordinary scandals which has trailed out of Glasgow City Council this year with anything other than utter bewilderment. What on earth is going on there? It is almost as if the political leaders of Scotland’s biggest city – those who should be setting an example in terms of public life for the rest of the city – have gone into collective meltdown. Each revelation has been bizarre and newsworthy on its own but it is worth putting them altogether, only then does a true picture emerge of what can only be described as a crisis.

4. November 13 2011; Council in ‘record pay-off’ scandal http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/283451/Council-in-record-pay-off-scandal

A controversial quango boss who gave lucrative contracts to millionaire Labour donors is set to pocket Scotland’s biggest ever public sector ‘golden goodbye’. Willie Docherty, head of cash-strapped Scottish council’s arm’s-length firm, is in line to receive a staggering £615,000 when he steps down next year. Part of a special super-charged early retirement package, the prospective deal includes a £465,000 tax-free sum on top of his £150,000 salary – an annual wage higher than Prime Minister David Cameron. Mr Docherty, 55, the chief executive of City Building Glasgow, is no stranger to controversy, as he was closely linked to drugs shame former Glasgow City Council leader Steven Purcell and has faced repeated cronyism accusations because of his links with Labour.

As part of his pay-off, Mr Docherty is also rumoured to be in line to receive a 40 year service bonus despite only having 30 years with the council and its subsidiary. A former apprentice who grew up in Glasgow’s tough Castlemilk scheme, his wife Sadie is a Labour councillor in the city

5. February 10 2012; Wheels come off Glasgow Labour Council https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIMSAoRN6Ds

Municipal politics often present an ugly, sordid spectacle, one that is mercilessly depicted in Private Eye’s Rotten Boroughs feature. Few present one as sordid as Glasgow City Council, which over decades has honed the traditional script elements of cronyism, petty nepotism, influence-peddling, individual venality and payoffs allied to huge profits to the external vultures – the beneficiaries of contract placements.

6. February 10 2012; Labour stares into the abyss – fear and panic in George Square https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQg3rjAnBh4

a. The Glasgow Labour ship is aground, holed below the waterline, but may float until May. To Labour Councillors – I have this to say – you can’t avoid risk either way, so make the smart bet – move to the SNP. You’ll be welcomed, and your constituents will understand – but only if you do it now, and spend the next ten weeks or so explaining and convincing them. If you truly believe in Glasgow, you MUST do it – and you can. Don’t be part of the collapse of Glasgow Labour – be part of the future of Scotland!

b. Comments;

i. arthurdaileys minder; The wheels are coming off the Glasgow Labour cart…….a long time coming.

ii. akoustixx; Dinosaurs reign no more!

iii. MrZambology; Libelous just now wait a couple of years and you’ll see it’s the truth. I stand by everything I said. Thanks for the advice Z.

iv. MrZambology; After the illegal war in Iraq, they should have disbanded. Socialism is alive and well in Scotland without them. The SNP and the people of Scotland don’t need them, they can run back to Westminster with their tails between their legs. Their scum as far as I am concerned.

7. February 13 2012; Labour Plunge New Depths In Glasgow in Blackmail Scandal http://tommyballgovan.blogspot.co.uk/2012/02/labour-plunge-new-depths-in-glasgow-in.html

a. Congratulations are in order to Gordon Matheson, who took over from Labour criminal Stephen Purcell in a scandalous resignation involving drugs, gangs and blackmail, but which seemed to elicit little interest from the mainstream media or BBC Scotland. Matheson, who has never had a proper job, professed himself “delighted” to have pushed through the Glasgow budget, with its £43.000.000 cuts, including some Freddy Krugeresque jactitations of Glasgow City Council workers’ terms and conditions.

8. May 8 2012; Scottish Labour and Co-operative successful in Local Government Elections

a. Twenty four of the thirty Labour and Co-operative Party Candidates standing in Scottish Local Government elections have been elected in a very successful election for Scottish Labour. The four Labour and Co-operative candidates in Edinburgh, where Labour won the most seats and which has plans to become a Co-operative Council, were all elected as were all four candidates in Glasgow – which hopes to match the capital city’s Co-operative Council ambitions. In Glasgow, former Labour and Co-operative MSPs, Bill Butler and Frank McAveety were elected to the council. http://scotland.party.coop/2012/05/08/scottish-labour-and-co-operative-successful-in-local-government-elections/

9. July 21 2012; Glasgow City Council Nepotism – Jobs for the Boys http://discuss.glasgowguide.co.uk/lofiversion/index.php/t24707.html

a. Glasgow Labour’s murky history is clearly not in the past after appointing a failed Labour politician to a post that is supposed to be politically neutral. Not only is he a former Labour minister, he also ran the council campaign in Glasgow and has aligned himself to ensure he gets a top spot. Earning a reported salary of just under £50,000 a year is yet another slap in the face to the people of Glasgow. The list of incompetence and jobs for the boys goes on. I’ve raised my concerns with the chief solicitor at the council. Tom McCabe has mastered the art of golden handshakes and has been handsomely rewarded for his part in the council campaign. This post is supposed to be non-political – what assurances can he make to the people of Glasgow that he will not be putting his allegiances to Labour first?”

10. August 21 2012; Glasgow appoints ‘Cycling Czar’.

a. Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city, has appointed a ‘Cycling Czar’ who will be tasked with increasing levels of leisure, commuting and sports cycling as the city looks to build on the cycling’s higher profile ahead of its own hosting of the Commonwealth Games in 2014. The man who will take on the new role is former Scottish Sports Minister Frank McAveety, a former Labour MSP who lost his seat at the last Holyrood elections. Mr McAveety plans to publish an updated cycling strategy for the city later this year.

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The Sin of Silence in Sin City Glasgow Part 2 – 2010 A Year of Turmoil and Scandal

1. February 18 2010; SPT Chief Executive Ron Culley stands down after expenses row

a. Last week the Glasgow-based Regional Transit Agency lost its Chairman, Deputy Chairman and Chief Executive. Labour Councillors Alistair Watson and Davie McLachlan and Chief Executive Ron Culley after it emerged the quango had spent more than £117,573 on expenses, £49,000 of it on fact-finding trips around the world. They were ordered to stand down by their friend and colleague Steven Purcell, leader of Glasgow City Council.

b. Bob Wyllie, former BBC Scotland investigations editor and SPT’s Communications Director, also became embroiled in the controversy after The Sunday Times reported yesterday that he had claimed £773 for a trip to Manchester which coincided with Rangers’ appearance in the 2008 Uefa Cup Final.

c. Culley is a season ticket holder at Celtic Park , as are Willie Haughey, Steven Purcell and Frank McAveety. Jack McConnell is a regular guest.

d. Culley, Haughey and McAveety were at the forefront of the campaign for the M74 extension which improved Road links to Parkhead. 3 days after McConnell and McAveety announced the relocation of Sport Scotland to land adjacent to Celtic Park.

e. Culley, (as Chief Executive of Strathclyde Passenger Transport) recently issued a low-key statement declaring his intention to build a new £20 million train link to Parkhead jointly funded by SPT, GCC and The Scottish Executive. More recently Culley announced plans for a Glasgow Underground extension to Parkhead.

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/correspondence_between_steven_pu_2
http://scottishpol.blogspot.co.uk/2011/02/success-has-many-fathers-including-ron.html
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-11829891
http://www.scotsman.com/news/ron-culley-s-lavish-lifestyle-cost-taxpayer-163-25k-1-1366444
http://btpa.police.uk/livesite/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Culley.pdf
http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/incoming/article255377.ece
http://news.stv.tv/west-central/158247-spt-chief-executive-stands-down/

2. March 8 2010; Labour ‘visionary’ quits politics amid drugs blackmail scandal http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1256249/Labour-visionary-Steven-Purcell-quits-politics-amid-drug-blackmail-scandal.html

a. One of the rising stars of New Labour – once hailed by Tony Blair as a ‘visionary’ – has quit politics amid a growing drugs scandal. Steven Purcell was seen as a talented young moderniser who was tipped for a glittering career in the party he joined aged just 14. But the 37-year-old has resigned as leader of Scotland’s biggest council, citing stress and exhaustion – amid lurid claims about his drug use. It emerged yesterday that the gay former Councillor had been warned by police last year about an underworld plot to blackmail him.

3. March 15 2010; Council firm in £10m ‘contracts for donor’ probe http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/politics/council-firm-in-10m-contracts-for-donor-probe-1.1013329

a. A company created by former Glasgow City Council leader Steven Purcell is facing an independent audit after awarding around £10 million of contracts to a firm run by Labour’s biggest Scottish donor. City Building (Glasgow) LLP, an arm’s-length company set up by the Labour-run city council, awarded two large deals to City Refrigeration Holdings UK in 2007. The founder and boss of City Refrigeration is Willie Haughey, who has donated more than £1.1m to Labour since 2003. City Building, which replaced the council’s Building Services Department, was created in 2006 as a tax-efficient trading unit, which could bid for construction work beyond Glasgow, and now has a turnover of £180m and more than 2,000 employees.

4. March 23 2010 Stephen Purcell – What Did Gordon Brown Know and When? http://www.torybear.com/2010/03/what-did-gordon-know-and-when.html

a. A scandal far from London is edging closer and close to the door of Number 10. In amongst the plants and moans that normally take up the latter stages of PMQs there was a rare gem of a very intriguing question from the SNP’s Angus Robertson asking Gordon about a conference call to discuss the suitability of Labour’s disgraced cocaine king Steven Purcell as the candidate in the Glasgow East by-election in 2008.

i. A ‘Labour insider’ claimed: “At that point, rumours about Purcell had reached the party headquarters. So a discussion was had with him – and he was asked outright about the drug rumours. And after that, any idea of him being the candidate was Abandoned immediately.”

ii. Angus Robertson asked: “Given that the Prime Minister will have looked closely at the tragic case. Will he confirm whether a Downing Street staffer took part in a conference in July 2008 which discussed the suitability of Stephen Purcell?”

iii. Gordon Brown: “I know nothing of what he says but I shall look at it.”

b. Always one for a dodging a question, what was Gordon so coy about? Why so subdued? At the post-PMQ briefing afterwards Scottish journalists were palmed off with, “There are more important questions”. For once someone doing the briefing was correct. There are some very interesting questions still surrounding this case indeed.

c. Could it be that Brown knows more than he is letting on? The story of Steven Purcell’s resignation has led to a constant drip drip about just what was going on at Glasgow City Council and its relationship with big donors to the Labour party. The Scottish Sunday papers are having a field ay about big Labour donors and lucrative public sector contracts. Million pound deals, quango donors and Purcell linked to shady companies. And it goes further than that – blackmail and organised crime.

d. Other aspects worthy of follow-up is why the Scottish editors are so reluctant to get down and dirty and blow the lid of this story once and for all. It’s not like they didn’t know : “Politicians, journalists and lawyers alike, apparently, had direct or indirect knowledge for years about the personal habits of the leader of Glasgow City Council and chose to ignore it.” Great. But this whole saga has plenty more questions that are still needing to be answered. Not just about Labour donors getting taxpayers cash but about Labour donors and their connections with gangsters.

e. “The Digger”, a small A5 Glasgow news-sheet recently revealed that Labour donor James Mortimer is the uncle of the common law wife of a well known Glasgow gangster. As well as being a high profile attendee, along with the Prime Minister, at the Labour fundraising dinner the day before Steven Purcell’s little moment of crisis, Mr Mortimer has entertained some intriguingly high profile people at his, Club 29 in Glasgow.

f. Such links between the Scottish Labour party and the mob have been raising eyebrows for the last few years. Like the Red Rose Dinner attended by Labour First Minister Jack McConnell and John Reid. It was also attended by a drug dealer by the name of Justin McAlroy who ended up dead six days later. James Mortimer also attended that dinner. His father, Tommy McAlroy, who is a close friend of Labour whip Frank Roy, has also been implicated in drug baronetcy. And it’s also not the first time John Reid – a former Home Secretary for goodness sake – has had family connections reported that raise eyebrows – his father in law was arrested in a drugs bust.

g. So you might be getting an idea why Gordon Brown was not exactly keen on drawing attention to the UK media about a story which has him and numerous senior Labour leaders wining and dining with people who have some seriously dodgy connections and backgrounds. If its full implications broke before the sixth of May it may not just destroy Scottish Labour but bring down Brown. But there are three important questions that still remain unanswered over two weeks after these events broke. These are raised publicly in order that the media in London might do what Glasgow news editors have been too afraid to do.

i. Who is paying for Steven Purcell’s bills? Public relations, top media lawyers, stays in rehab clinics and lengthy trips abroad cost money and Steven is now unemployed – his whereabouts still unknown. Most of his money went up his nose so how is he paying his way. Why did he turn down the help the council’s media officers offered?

ii. Under Steven Purcell’s leadership of Glasgow City Council what deals have the council, City Building LLP and any other arms length organisations set up by the council done – particularly with major Labour donors like James Mortimer, Brian Dempsey and Willie Haughey?

iii. Who was sitting at the top table with Gordon Brown and Steven Purcell at the Labour party fundraiser the night before Steven Purcell’s announcement to his colleagues and did anything happen at the dinner to hasten his departure from the council?

5. comments:

a. Anonymous: “There have been hints that some Scottish newspapers have pulled their punches because editors have been too close to Steven Purcell or worse, have been cowed into submission by Peter Watson (of Levy & McRae) and PR firm Media House.”

b. Anonymous: This is explosive stuff.The newspapers in Scotland have been slow to react and as for the BBC ???? well they have put their heads in the sand in the hope it would go away. The best bet of this all coming out would be if the English media get a whiff of the scandal getting close to Gordon Brown. Gordon Brown was with Purcell the night before he resigned at a Labour party fundraiser. There is a huge story here unfortunately it won’t be the Scottish media who will expose it they are completely entwined with the Labour party in this country.

c. Anonymous: Good summary of the Purcell situation. Unfortunately any disclosures will have to come from the London media as the Scottish media have tried their best to bury the story, and has been hardly mentioned by the BBC.

d. Anonymous: Hopefully the Scottish Labour chickens in Ruin’s roost are coming home. But watch your back. Glasgow Caledonians have Sicilian friends. Ever wondered why frozen Glasgow has so many Italian ice cream parlours and pizza places?

e. cynicalHighlander: Its worse than you elude to when our subsidised public broadcaster in Scotland is suppressing this story as it acts as a Labour party media outlet up here.
The City is one of the most if not the most corrupt local authorities in the UK. We have one private firm City Buildings Ltd wholly owned by the Council buying two x £2,000 Tables at a fund raising function for Glasgow City Labour Party. We find one prominent Labour supporting businessman (donations supposedly into six figures) getting contracts even though it seems his company’s wasn’t the lower tender while in addition there are suggestions of some equally dodgy land deals

f. Its not new either :-when Parkhead Stadium was rebuilt in the 90s Planning Procedures were accelerated, building standards were shortcut. The relationship between Celtic Football Club (Chairman John Reid MP)and Glasgow City Labour Party gives off a stench. Mind you as I read on another blog two weeks ago, “if Gordon Brown nuked the Glasgow housing schemes, the survivors would still vote Labour”

g. cynicalHighlander: Anon “The Herald and Scotsman are both going bust. They wont ask questions because it is public sector advertising which is keeping them alive.” And who blocked the SNP from putting that advertising online all 3 unionist parties. I haven’t bought a newspaper for years as they only have copy and paste journalists rather than grass root journalism.

h. Anonymous: Something stinks in the naked city. Where’s Taggart when you need him.

i. Anonymous: The dinner is the key.

j. Anonymous: If the rumours are true. Do not think that when the influential conduct clandestine meetings in pub car parks with the less influential and socialise with them that it goes unnoticed. I feel that we are in the calmer waters just now but we are about to head into the squalls – The weather will change in the course of the election . I have a gut feeling that this is going to erupt soon, I would be willing to bet on it.

k. redcliffe62: The Scottish media know most, if not the entire, story. The question is, can the Tories get an editor to come over to the dark side, as a drop in labour’s vote will simply increase the number of SNP MP’s and that outcome is not one the Tories seem to want either. Glasgow Times and Herald cannot go against those that pay the bills. The Scotsman is a waste of time as well. The best hope is through McAlpine at the Times. She knows some of the facts, a good story two weeks out from the election methinks.

l. Anonymous: “What Did Gordon Know and When?” Not much and never.

m. Anonymous: City Building has always been corrupt from the time David Angus was the Director, Wullie Docherty has just continued this his taking over. Building Services used to hand back 11 million pounds surplus when part of the Council, now I understand they hand back 2 million, where has all the money gone? hired cars big rises in pay for certain people, how can it work when the head of City Building is married to a Councillor who recently took a large redundancy package from the GHA. Time Docherty went without any big payment.

6. March 28 2010; City Building scandal – Labour Party donor gets massive contract. http://glasgowunihumanrights.blogspot.co.uk/2010/03/city-building-scandal-deepens-as-labour.html

a. It seems that the Glasgow Labour Party scandal continues a pace. Another Labour donor has benefiting from contracts, this time from Labour controlled City Building. The news puts renewed pressure for the removal of Willie Docherty to stand down as head of City Building. Docherty is married to a Glasgow Labour Councillor Sadie Docherty. It seems that City Building (Glasgow) LLP has awarded a lucrative contract to AS Scaffolding Ltd. AS Scaffolding is run by Andrew Smillie whose family and firm has donated money to the Labour Party. This news must put pressure also back on Strathclyde Police and Audit Scotland to investigate Glasgow City Council and its ALEOs. People need to know has Labour controlled Glasgow City Council been funneling jobs and contracts to family, friends and associates of the Labour Party. Why are there so many high profile people with Labour Party connections heading Glasgow quangos?

7. April 2 2010; Anger as Glasgow City Council rejects calls for inquiry into Steven Purcell scandal

a. Scotland’s largest council were last night accused of a cover-up after rejecting a bid to have an inquiry into the Steven Purcell scandal. An SNP group motion asking for an independent investigation into “the practices and recent decisions of the council” was kicked out after the ruling Labour group were supported by Lib Dems in voting it down. The city’s SNP leader James Dornan claimed there was an urgent need to examine how former leader Purcell held his job despite it being known he’d admitted taking cocaine and heavy drinking. At a highly-charged meeting, the council instead backed an amendment saying there was no need for an inquiry. After the meeting, Dornan fumed: “The council do not want to be accused of a cover-up but this is how the decision might appear. “We are disappointed and believe a proper investigation should begin as soon as possible.”

8. April 6 2010; Lib-Lab pact veto inquiry into City Council http://www.conservativehome.com/localgovernment/2010/04/lib-lab-pact-veto-inquiry-into-glasgow-city-council.html

a. Councillor David Meikle, a Conservative Councillor on Glasgow City Council, on how his fellow Councillors have blocked an investigation into the Steven Purcell scandal. After weeks of speculation, rumour and allegation, Councillors finally got the chance to debate the recent scandal involving Purcell and Glasgow City Council. The Leader of the Opposition submitted a motion which called for a full statement by the acting Leader and an independent investigation into the affair. The motion was supported by the SNP, Green Party and me. However, after an hour long and bad tempered Council meeting, Labour and Liberal Democrat Councillors voted against the motion.

9. April 10 2010; Police probe former council leader Steven Purcell over £50k grant. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/police-probe-former-council-leader-1055737

a. Drug shame council boss Steven Purcell is being probed over alleged corruption. It has been claimed the former Glasgow Council leader used undue influence to help friend and fellow Councillor Ruth Black win a £50,000 contract. An elite team of detectives are now investigating the claims, which it is understood follow a confidential tip-off this week to opposition SNP Councillors. The development is the first confirmed police involvement in the Purcell affair since his dramatic fall from grace last month. The 37-year-old political high-flier suffered a breakdown and details of his cocaine use emerged.

b. The Record understand a confidential source supplied the SNP with potentially incriminating information over the award of the running of the city’s publicly funded lesbian and gay drop-in centre. The Nats tipped off police, who put their Major Crimes and Terrorism Investigation Unit on the case. Officers are said to be examining claims about links between Purcell and Black, who friends say regularly socialised together. Glasgow City Council chief executive George Black and the council’s legal chief Ian Drummond have been made aware of the claims and ordered their own probe.

9. April 22 2010; John Mason Discusses Steven Purcell & Glasgow City Council https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W6JZL0VJU20#t=59

a. SNP Glasgow East Candidate John Mason discusses the recent allegations made against Glasgow City Council and former Council leader Steven Purcell, as well as Strathclyde Police’s decision to investigate matters, in his most recent video blog.

10. May 11 2010; Steven Purcell scandal refuses to disappear http://www.scotsman.com/news/glasgow-votes-in-new-leader-but-steven-purcell-scandal-refuses-to-disappear-1-803596

a. Councillors in Glasgow have elected a new leader and hope the move will put an end to the recent revelations of sleaze and scandal which followed the resignation of former boss Steven Purcell. Councillor Matheson will now be handed the difficult task of rebuilding the reputation of the ruling Labour group on the council after the Purcell scandal saw it tainted by accusations of drug dealing, cronyism and links to the city’s criminal underworld. Openly gay and in a civil partnership with a long-standing partner, Mr Matheson admitted that there were “tough times ahead for the council” but insisted that he was “prepared to make the decisions”. Mr Matheson takes over from interim leader Jim Coleman, who has presided since the sudden departure of Mr Purcell, who resigned in March in one of the most bizarre political scandals of recent years.

11. June 4 2010; Steven Purcell quizzed by police over drug confession. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/shamed-former-council-leader-steven-1060817

a. Disgraced former council boss Steven Purcell has been quizzed by police amid a probe into his admissions of drug-taking. The former Glasgow City Council leader spent several hours being questioned at a police station near his home. The probe is understood to be ongoing and is connected with his self-confessed cocaine use and other issues relating to his time as council leader. A family source said: “Steven returned home last week and was interviewed by Strathclyde Police about his admission of drug taking and other matters. “It was an intensive interview. We just have to wait and see what happens now.”

b. We revealed in April that detectives had launched an investigation into the ex-council boss. Police have been weighing up the case against the 37-year-old since he admitted in an interview that he took the class A drug. It is believed the inquiry will also cover allegations surrounding contracts awarded by the council. As well as questioning Purcell, who is believed to have been in Ireland, it’s thought detectives will quiz senior Councillors and top officials at the City Chambers. He could be reported to the procurator fiscal, who would decide if he should face trial. Purcell, who was tipped as a future first minister, stood down as Glasgow council leader in March, citing “stress and exhaustion”.

12. June 17 2010; Top Scots politician quits after lecherous comments about ‘dark, dusky’ girl, 15, in public gallery are picked up on parliament microphones

a. Labour MSP Frank McAveety has resigned from two high profile parliamentary positions after he was caught referring to a member of a parliamentary committee audience as “attractive” and “dark and dusky”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls1fDOFOpB0 http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1287302/MSP-Frank-McAveety-forced-resign-dark-dusky-woman-comments.html

b. McAveety is Labour’s former Sports Minister who championed the case for Sportscotland’s HQ to be relocated from Edinburgh to the Parkhead site of a new National Arena, despite 90% of Sportscotland’s employees expressing their desire to stay in Edinburgh,

c. McAveety is a season ticket holder at Celtic Park , as are Willie Haughey, Steven Purcell and Ron Culley. Jack McConnell is a regular guest.

d. McAveety, Haughey and Culley were at the forefront of the campaign for the M74 extension which improved Road links to Parkhead. 3 days after McConnell and McAveety announced the relocation of Sport Scotland to land adjacent to Celtic Park.

13. July 5 2010; Steven Purcell to take up new charity post. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/shamed-former-glasgow-council-chief-1063490

a. Disgraced former Glasgow City Council leader Steven Purcell is to take up a role with a leading Scottish charity. Purcell resigned from his high-profile role in March amid drug and potential blackmail issues. But he will begin work for the Stewart and McKenna Foundation before the police probe into his activities is completed. The Daily Record exclusively revealed Purcell’s links to a Glasgow drop-in centre, The Castro gay and lesbian centre, on Saturday. It is frequented by convicted gun runner Paul Ferris and has other links to the Glasgow underworld.

b. In the wake of his resignation Purcell, 37, admitted to having “dabbled” with cocaine and underwent treatment at a rehab clinic. He had been touted as a political “star” and a possible future Labour leader in Scotland. Police began a probe in April but as yet no charges have been brought. Purcell has expressed an interest in doing voluntary work for charitable causes. The foundation was begun in 2004 by property developers Stephen McKenna and Allan Stewart. It funds charitable and social schemes in Burundi, Malawi, Kenya and even Moldova.

14. August 11 2010; What on earth is going on in Glasgow Council? http://caledonianmercury.com/2010/08/11/analysis-what-on-earth-is-going-on-in-glasgow-council/009866

a. In February 2010, the gathering expenses furore at Strathclyde Partnership for Transport forces the resignation of chair Alistair Watson and chief executive Ron Culley.

b. In March 2010, Steven Purcell, the high-profile Labour Council leader resigns in the midst of a breakdown. He admits previous use of drugs and of being a potential blackmail target by Glasgow gangsters.

c. Controversy surrounds the publicly-owned company City Building, set up by Glasgow Council, and its donations to the Labour Party.

d. July 2010. Labour Councillor Ruth Black is sacked over financial irregularities at the council-funded gay and lesbian centre run by her.

e. August 2010. Labour Councillor Gilbert Davidson is arrested and charged for inappropriate behaviour towards fellow Councillors. It is claimed that Davidson sent offensive voice mails and text messages to former Lord Provost Liz Cameron. Davidson is suspended from the Labour group.

b. These bald facts are bad enough in themselves but, in many ways, they mask the real depth of the problems. The SPT controversy, for example, is much bigger than that simple line above suggests. It has always appeared to be a disturbing example of waywardness with expenses and an apparent disregard for taxpayers’ money which the public will no longer tolerate. http://moridura.blogspot.co.uk/2011/04/rotten-boroughs-glasgow-city-council.html

15. September 9 2010; MSP takes Glasgow City Council scandals to Holyrood http://www.annemclaughlin.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=177:msp-takes-glasgow-city-council-scandals-to-holyrood&catid=1:news&Itemid=2

a. Anne McLaughlin, SNP MSP for the Glasgow region, has put down a motion to be debated in the Parliament about what she calls a “culture of silence” in Glasgow City Council’s Labour administration and amongst the party leadership. It comes on the back of the flood of scandals in Glasgow City Chambers in recent months. On top of this Labour Party Leader Iain Gray, and Shadow Scottish Secretary Jim Murphy MP, have ignored two letters from Glasgow SNP opposition leader Councillor James Dornan asking them to instigate an internal investigation within the Labour Party.

16. November 19 2010; What’s on the agenda tonight Councillors? http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/scottishnews/3235773/Whats-on-the-agenda-this-evening-councillors.html

a. The convener of Scotland’s largest police authority was quizzed by cops after being nabbed in a well-known lovers’ lane with a married fellow Councillor. Officers went to investigate after spotting Stephen Curran and Anne McTaggart acting suspiciously in a car in Pollok Park, Glasgow, late at night.

The Sin of Silence in Sin City Glasgow Part 1- Up to 2008- Read it and Weep

1. The Sin of Silence in the Face of Wrong-Doing in Public Office Makes Cowards Out of Honest Men.

a. Glasgow City Council became one of the newly created single tier local authorities in 1996, under the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act 1994,[1] with boundaries somewhat different from those of the City of Glasgow district of the Strathclyde region: parts of the Cambuslang and Halfway and Rutherglen and Fernhill areas were transferred from the city area to the new South Lanarkshire council area.

b. The district had been markedly expanded in 1975 under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973 to include: the former county of the city of Glasgow and a number of areas previously within the county of Lanark: Cambuslang (Central and North, and South lying outwith East Kilbride), Rutherglen (including the burgh of Rutherglen), part of a Carmunnock area (that lying outwith East Kilbride) and Baillieston, Carmyle, Garrowhill, Mount Vernon and Springboig.

c. Before the multi-seat 2007 election, there were 79 Councillors elected from 79 single-member wards by the plurality (first past the post) system of election. The result from this system was 69 of the 79 Councillors representing the Labour Party, although that party gained only around half the votes cast in the previous election to the council, and the Scottish National Party was represented by just four Councillors, despite gaining some 20% of the votes. There were also three Liberal Democrat Councillors, one Conservative Councillor, one Scottish Socialist Party Councillor, and one independent Councillor.

d. The most recent full council election took place on Thursday 3 May 2012. Labour retained overall majority control (45), with increased numbers for the Scottish National Party (27) and the Greens (5), while the Conservatives, Glasgow First and the Liberal Democrats each returned one Councillor. No Scottish Socialist Party, Solidarity or independent Councillors were returned.

2. September 24 1997; Labour Councillors face suspension http://www.independent.co.uk/news/labour-councillors-face-suspension-1240908.html

a. Allegations of corruption have swept through Labour councils across the country in the past few months. Labour is expected to take tough action against nine Glasgow Councillors accused of bringing the party into disrepute over allegations of junketing and misusing a council fund.
A report on the allegations is due to be presented today to Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee and is expected to show that there was widespread abuse in Glasgow of the way that conference trips and other visits were allocated to Councillors. It will also say that a special fund, the Common Good Fund, which is under the control of the provost, (the equivalent of mayor south of the border) was misused because it was used to allow Councillors to go on trips. The report is deeply critical of the whole management of the Labour- controlled council.

b. The report is based on interviews by a team of investigators with 37 of Labour’s 75 Councillors, but the publication of the report was delayed to ensure it did not interfere with the devolution vote. Four Councillors – Pat Lally, the provost, Bob Gould, the leader, Alex Mosson, the Deputy Provost, and Gordon MacDiarmid, the deputy leader – are all likely to be recommended for suspension. Five other Councillors, who do not hold senior positions on the council, are likely to be recommended for expulsion. Charges of bringing the party into disrepute are likely to be drawn up against all nine and passed to the party’s national constitutional committee which will decide what action to take.
Firm action is assured. Tony Blair is anxious to show that Labour will not tolerate sleaze in its ranks. Similar action is likely to be taken against Labour Councillors in Doncaster where investigations are being carried out by the police, the Labour party, the district auditor and the council itself.

3. January 25 1998; Labour’s wild west – Brian Deer investigates Glasgow politics http://briandeer.com/glasgow-labour.htm

a. Tony Blair’s “New Labour” promised to sweep away the old ideology of a political party. In Labour’s Scottish heartlands and birthplace, traditional socialists were dealt with severely, as Brian Deer’s investigation revealed. This is the best in depth report on the sickness that was and still is the Labour run councils in the West of Scotland. 15 years after a clean-up, corruption and scandal are bye-words again.

4. May 18 1999; The past of Celtic Trust Chairman Alex Mosson http://ifyouknowtheirhistory.blogspot.co.uk/2007/11/celtic-trust-chairman-alex-mosson.html

a. Convicted criminal Alex Mosson is the new Lord Provost of Glasgow. The Labour politician will become the public face of Scotland’s largest city despite convictions for assault and housebreaking. Colleagues in the Labour Group of Glasgow City Council voted by a clear majority for Mosson to take over the high-profile civic role, which will pay him pounds 24,000 a year of public money. Reformed alcoholic Mosson will also become Lord Lieutenant of Glasgow – the Queen’s official representative in the city. Last night, the 58-year-old said: ‘My colleagues have placed their trust in me and I won’t let them down. ‘I’m looking forward to working with a unified group and taking Glasgow into the Millennium. ‘I’ve overcome my past difficulties with the support of my family and today with the help of the Labour Party.’ It was revealed in the press that Mosson had been jailed for nine months for assault and six months for housebreaking.

b. 1999-2003 Alex Mosson – Lord Provost of Glasgow http://www.vanguardbears.co.uk/same-city-council-same-old-story.html

i. It was the appointment in 1999 of Councillor Alex Mosson, who held the position of Lord Provost from then until 2003 that caused the biggest stir. A lifelong Celtic supporter, Mr. Mosson was the inaugural Chairman of The Celtic Trust and remained on the board of same for many years.

ii. He had four criminal convictions that led to custodial sentences. Two for housebreaking, one for assault and one for housebreaking with menaces (he tied-up and beat-up an elderly lady whose house he was robbing). In essence, he used to beat up and rob pensioners he later purported to represent as Lord Provost of Glasgow.

iii. At the time of his appointment as Lord Provost, otherwise unemployed Mosson lived in a plush Victorian home in Glasgow’s west end. It was said that his trade union involvement was farcical; he hadn’t worked for twenty-odd years – a full time Councillor on the make.

iv. Mosson’s wife (the then Lady Provost) caused uproar when she made an application and received an increase in her dress allowance from £8,000 to £14,000 per annum. She justified this by stating that the people of Glasgow wouldn’t want to be embarrassed by their Lady Provost appearing twice in the same outfit, in public on their behalf. His daughter also served as a Councillor.

v. The Mossons could be spotted as “guests of honour” at the Celtic Rally and their photographs were often to be found in The Celtic View, the peroxide Mrs. Mosson accompanying her husband whilst he received or presented awards. The four years of his tenure as Lord Provost cost the people of Glasgow a minimum of £250,000. In his case, crime would appear to pay.

vi. He caused further outrage when in 2005 after it was revealed that he used his taxpayer-funded chauffeur-driven car to attend Celtic Football Club matches, functions and supporters’ rallies during his time as Lord Provost. During that period, he attended no Rangers fixtures despite having an open invitation to visit Ibrox. His public engagements, revealed under Freedom of Information legislation, included the following:

vii. “36 Celtic home matches as Lord Provost; (Celtic) away matches at Paisley, Livingston and Liverpool; the testimonial ball, dinner and match held to mark the career of former Celtic player Tom Boyd; supporters’ rallies honouring Celtic captain Paul Lambert and former club physio Brian Scott; a Celtic charity event; a Celtic hall of fame dinner; a Celtic board meeting; an event in Ireland dedicated to ex-Celtic player Sean Fallon; a “civic lunch” in 1999 with the chief executive of Celtic; the funeral of former Celtic player Bobby Murdoch; an official council reception and lunch at the Corinthian in Glasgow, prior to the Republic of Ireland’s world cup match against Saudi Arabia.”

viii. As an impartial public servant sensitive to the views of all residents Mosson had an open invitation to attend football matches at both Parkhead and Ibrox, but chose only the former. Freedom of Information documents show that he attended no matches at Ibrox, while the small number of Rangers games he did attend involved Celtic as opponents. Of the six Ibrox functions identified from his list of engagements, Mosson failed to attend three of them. For all his Parkhead engagements, the City Daimler was put at Mossons disposal. The taxpayer funded his jaunts.

ix. After leaving office in 2003, he was appointed chair of the Glasgow Marketing Bureau, and promptly awarded a £200,000 contract to an established Glasgow business – The Trophy Centre which, at the time, was owned by a former Celtic Director (formerly owned by James Torbett – the monster at the head of the Celtic Boys Club child abuse scandal).

5. October 4 2004; ‘Piegate’ minister has his chips.

a. Frank McAveety may be left pondering whether a ministerial sacking, like revenge, is a dish best served cold. The Glasgow MSP once again finds himself without portfolio after being dumped by First Minister Jack McConnell for the second time. As culture minister, he found himself in the firing line over controversial cuts at Scottish Opera. But many feel that his downfall was hastened by a canteen dinner which left him late for parliament. That gaffe came only days after Mr McAveety was left with egg on his face after a two anti-war protestors were cleared of terrorizing him in the street. Mr McAveety said he had felt the “worst intimidation in his life” while canvassing on Glasgow’s south-side – but a sheriff said that he “must live a very sheltered life”. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/3713520.stm

6. June 14 2007; Former Boys And Girls Abused – Scandal of Kerelaw http://fbga.redguitars.co.uk/scandalOfKerelaw14_06_07.php

a. Forty care workers preyed either sexually or physically on Scottish children in what is one of Britain’s biggest abuse scandals, a report will reveal today. A three-year investigation has found “a significant core of staff” at Kerelaw residential unit in Ayrshire were directly involved. They preyed on some of the most troubled and troubling youngsters in the country, sometimes in the full knowledge of colleagues and superiors amid “a culture of fear and collusion”. Glasgow City Council, which ran Kerelaw, will today publish its first full report on what happened at the school. It will also issue a chilling warning that some of the workers it believes were involved are still working in Scotland’s care sector. https://www.tes.co.uk/teaching-resource/Confidants-for-kids-a-priority-after-Kerelaw-abuse-scandal-2401237/

7. June 22 2008; Council threatens to throw the book at author http://www.scotsman.com/news/council-threatens-to-throw-the-book-at-author-1-1434097

a. Scotland’s biggest council and a former lord provost are threatening legal action over explosive claims in a new book that corruption and hypocrisy are widespread. Niall Walker, a former Liberal Democrat Councillor in Glasgow, has attempted to take revenge on his Labour enemies in a hard-hitting, self-published book which has made its way on to the shelves of at least one major bookstore in the city.

b. Halls Of Infamy, which is also available online, is littered with Walker’s claims of alleged malpractice he encountered during four years in the city chambers. But Glasgow City Council last night hit back, revealing it was consulting lawyers about whether to take action over the claims. Borders bookstore said it would decide tomorrow whether to remove the 4.95, 120-page paperback from its shelves.

8. 13 July 2008; Eleven Glasgow Labour Councillors Under Investigation http://discuss.glasgowguide.co.uk/lofiversion/index.php/t14593.html

a. Eleven Labour Glasgow City Councillors, including Councillor George Ryan, who suddenly pulled out of the contest to represent Labour in the crucial Glasgow East by-election, were reported to the Standards on 18 June 2008 in connection with a controversial land deal in the city centre.

b. The complaint surrounded their conduct in relation to the controversial attempt to close down the 150 year old Paddy’s Market in the city and obtain land on which the market is currently located. The complaint which was submitted to the Standards Commission of Scotland by a representative of Paddy’s Market traders claimed that Councillor Ryan misled the council in a report he presented to the council’s Executive Committee which recommended the council purchase the head lease of the land where the market is situated and for the historic Paddy’s Market to be closed down.

c. The report which was presented by Councillor Ryan at a meeting on 20 March 2008, and subsequently led to the council’s endorsement of its recommendations, stated that the owners of the land had agreed to provide the lease at a reduced rate to the Council. However, the forty page complaint document submitted to the Standards Commission included information that clearly indicated that no such deal had been made with the council. Councillor Ryan also faces investigation for other breaches of the Code of Conduct in relation to this matter along with ten other high profile Glasgow City Council Labour Councillors including the Council leader, Steven Purcell.

d. Paddy’s Market representative, Brian Daly said: “This market has been here for over 150 years, and my family has been trading here for three generations. The Labour Councillors who are intent on closing us down have failed in their responsibilities as elected members to engage with us at any time in relation to this. They have, instead, chosen to make backroom decisions and bulldozer them through without any regard for the democratic process. “The whole affair has been one of misrepresentation of the facts to the public, the media and to the council itself. We live in a democratic society yet, some of those who we trust to carry out duties on our behalf have chosen to make decisions and disregard the wishes of the electorate.”

e. “Labour Councillors refused to share vital information with other elected members from other political parties who also represent this area or include them in the vital stages of the decision making process. Instead there has been a sustained approach by some Labour Councillors and council officials to make unsupported claims both in council and through the media locally in an attempt to gain public and council support for their project. “Elected members who behave in such a way should and must be held fully accountable for their actions, and whilst it would be inappropriate for me to preempt the findings of the Standard Commission investigation, I believe the evidence against those Councillors involved is pretty damning. We won’t put up with the bully boy tactics of the council any longer. We very much look forward to the outcome of the investigation.”

f. The other ten Labour Councillors have been reported to the Standards Commission are: Councillor Steven Purcell – Council Leader Councillor James Coleman – Deputy Leader of the Council Councillor Aileen Colleran – Council Business Manager Councillor Stephen Curran – City Treasurer Bailie Gordon Matheson – local Councillor for Paddy’s Market Bailie Hanzala Malik Councillor Stephen Doran Councillor Archie Graham Councillor Ruth Simpson Councillor Shaukat Butt.

The Co-op Bank – Financial Woes – Co-op & Unite MP’s & Labour Party Difficulties

1. The Co-operative Bank – Financial Competence – The Struggle to get back to Solvency

a. The original gap in the bank’s finances was mainly due to a 2009 merger with the Britannia Building Society. As part of that deal it absorbed some big commercial property loans, which returned significant losses leaving the bank exposed. Under banking rules, banks need a certain amount of capital in place to be considered stable, and the Co-op had to act to make sure it had enough.

b. A “bail-in” plan was approved by the BOE. This excused the public from any financial outlay since the bank turned to it’s bond/shareholders to raise the required funds.

c. The first £1bn was generated through an exchange deal with investors holding “subordinated capital securities” or bonds – In effect they loaned the bank money in return for a regular interest payment. But instead of the interest payment and their existing stake in the bank, they were offered a choice: they could either take shares in the bank, to be listed on the stock market; or accept a new investment offering a fixed interest rate.

d. Some investors were holders of permanent interest bearing shares (Pibs), offering high fixed interest rates – in the Co-op’s case, investors had been receiving annual returns of between 5.5% and 13%. Instead of getting cash as expected, and being able to cash in their Pibs at some point in the future for their face value, they were also required to take part in the exchange, together with large, institutional investors. The move also impacted on around 7,000 individual investors who made up about 5% of the bank’s bondholders. The initial value of the new holdings was markedly reduced by (20-30%). An additional £500m was raised from the sale of the bank’s insurance arm and some other assets, and from other cost-saving measures.

e. Customers with current accounts and savings accounts did not lose any cash deposits and The Co-op Group stressed it was still the majority owner of the bank, and that it intended to remain a mutual. However, the stock market listing for part of it meant a significant change of direction should shareholders require the bank to maximise profits.

f. Andre Spicer, professor of organisational behaviour at Cass Business School, said the change in the bank’s business model going forward “was likely to clash with the co-operative ethos of the bank and, in the longer term, this might undermine what had made the Co-op attractive to its staff and customers.” http://www.theguardian.com/money/2013/jun/17/co-op-bank-bailout-what-means-customers

2. UK Bank of England – Stress Test Regime – Frances Coppola, Expert Comment, (paraphrased):

a. It is certainly possible that the UK might experience deflation as the Eurozone, with which the UK is entangled through a complex web of trade and financial ties, sinks deeper into its self-imposed depression.

b. Since the UK is one of the most highly-indebted economies in the world, a deflationary crisis would be every bit as bad for the UK as an inflationary one. Yet the Bank of England chooses to ignore this and focus on last century’s war. This is not to say that an inflation-induced economic crisis should not be tested: but a deflationary one should also be tested. The Bank of England is making the same mistake as the EBA. Simply making a test more severe does not make it any more valid.

c. Rising inflation is not a greater risk than falling inflation: indeed, for a highly-indebted economy such as the UK’s, falling inflation is arguably the greater risk. The Bank of England’s stress tests are every bit as flawed as the EU’s.

3. UK Bank of England Stress Testing – (annual from 2014) – Doomsday Scenario.

a. The Bank of England has made it clear that the doomsday scenario is not something that it thinks is likely to happen at the present time. It is an attempt however to replicate bad news piled upon bad news such as occurred in 2008. But given that the present risks in the economy include a collapse in the oil price and possible deflation in the eurozone, indeed some argue that the Bank is testing the wrong thing. However eight UK banks were subject to stress testing in December 2014. The scenario;

i. Sterling falls by about 30%

ii. House prices fall by 35%

iii. Bank rate rises to 4.2%

iv. CPI inflation peaks at 6.6%

v. Unemployment rises to nearly 12%

vi. GDP falls by 3.5%

vii. Share prices fall by 30%

4. Stress Testing Outcomes

a. The Co-operative Bank, which had to be rescued last year after a £1.5bn black hole was found in its balance sheet, was the only bank deemed to require a “revised capital plan”. Whilst the Bank had divested itself of a number of risky assets much work needed to be done to “significantly reduce other risk-weighted assets”. Officials were quick to point out that customers need not worry about their deposits, as The Financial Services Compensation Scheme protects the first £85,000 of savings per person, per institution. But given that the present risks in the economy include a collapse in the oil price and possible deflation in the eurozone, some argue that the Bank is testing the wrong thing.

December 2014; http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/financialstability/Pages/fpc/stresstest.aspx December 2014; http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/publications/Pages/news/2014/169.aspx

December 2014; http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30491161 December 2014; http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/epic/rbs/11297460/RBS-raises-2bn-to-pass-Bank-of-England-stress-test.html

5. December 16 2014; Remedial Measures – Co-operative Bank – Bank to Sell-Off Further Assets After Failing Stress Test

a. The Co-op Bank plans to sell £5.5bn of mortgage assets by 2018 after failing the Bank of England’s “stress test” of its ability to withstand another financial crisis. The bank’s chief executive had already conceded that it would probably not pass the test, having insufficient capital to cope with the most severe economic shock. To improve its balance sheet position the Co-op Bank has drawn up a new list of assets for disposal increasing capital funds. http://www.thebusinessdesk.com/northwest/news/706374-co-op-bank-plans-sell-off-after-failing-stress-test.html

6. European Banking Authority (EBA) – Stress test Regime – Expert Comments:

a. Raoul Ruparel: Head of Economic Research at independent think-tank Open Europe: Overall, the tests are a bit of a mixed bag. There is provided a great amount of data and some useful insights and standardization for the European banking sector. The stress test, as with its predecessors, continues to be plagued by simplistic and optimistic scenarios for the Eurozone as a whole, meaning specific pockets of risk are not properly tested. In any case, these tests alone were unlikely to ever mark a huge turning point for the Eurozone given the wider problems. Attention will once again switch back to the reform process and the role of the ECB in supporting demand.

b. Frances Coppola: Designer of risk management systems: My conclusion is that this exercise is, like the proverbial curate’s egg, good in parts. It has undoubtedly improved transparency and prudent asset valuation. But it has not proved that the banking system is resilient to even the current downturn, let alone a future one. http://www.pieria.co.uk/articles/european_stress_tests_not_stressful_enough

7. What Next for the Co-operative

a. It is entirely possible that the weakest of the UK banks could fail. The City might not be keen on taking on the losses of a mutual company. This would place the UK government in a difficult place since a taxpayer bail-out would in effect be a Nationalisation. But there is no precedence for government to act upon. The Co-op finance at least 180 MP’s and many 1000’s of Councillors and provide significant financial preferential loans to the Labour Party. Such a bail-out would be challenged through the courts since a political Party would then be financed by the state. It might be the Co-op would be persuaded to give up it’s share of the Bank to the City but the effect would be catastrophic for the MP’s, Councillors, and the Labour Party. The City takes no prisoners and might call in the loans. An interesting scenario.

7 May – Decision Day – Are You For Austerity Or Prosperity – I Am Fed Up To The Back Teeth With The Former -I choose The Latter

 

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Austerity 2015 -2020 (at least) – Get Ready to Rumble

Just to be clear: There are vast differences between the published policies of a Tory or Tory/UKIP or Labour or Tory/Labour or Tory/Lib/Dem or Labour Lib/Dem government post May 2015.

So, in opposition the performance of the losers will be dictated by the manifesto that they campaigned on.

The Scottish electorate has a choice. Elect any of the foregoing and suffer the brutal imposition of unfettered austerity far worse than experienced over the last 5 years.

OR Elect a powerful group of SNP MP’s who, in opposition will strongly defend Scots providing temperance to the aforesaid austerity measures, extracting from government concessions rightfully due to Scotland.

 

 

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Reflecting upon the recent referendum and the much vaunted “Vow” of devolution of increased powers, these are still unclear and uncertain.

But evidence to date indicates the Scottish government will simply be allocated a number of newly devolved responsibilities but with authority retained at Westminster.  All aspects of which to be implemented within existing or inadequately increased budgets.

 

 

12-days-of-a-privileged-christmas-david-cameron-george-osborne-political-cartoon-550UkipBBC_Scotland_Citadel

 

Paraphrasing a Recent health service statement by Labour Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham:

Andy Burnham indicated that he had the backing of Party Leader Ed Miliband and Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls to set out his vision for one service looking after the whole person through the merging of of social and health care provision.

We need to get the application of health policies consistent across England, Scotland and Wales.

That would be a good thing, all nations in the UK pulling in the same direction as opposed to pulling our separate ways.

Devolution, in its early days, was about doing something different but it needs now to embark on a different phase where we start talking again more about a UK-wide policy because in the end, that helps everybody.”

https://www.holyrood.com/articles/editorial/burnham-sets-out-vision-%E2%80%9Cwhole-person-service%E2%80%9D

 

 

austerity-britain_2537768bscottish-labour-mps-who-voted-for-the-tory-welfare-cap1Iain Duncan Smith Retroactive

 

Gordon Browns Centralised UK Education Policy proposal giveaway during referendum campaign:

Gordon Brown proposed and self endorsed the idea of a UK-wide education system – which could only mean taking powers away from Scotland and giving them back to Westminster – on the very day Alistair Darling and the No campaign are desperately trying to say that they stand for more powers for Scotland.”

http://www.scotsman.com/news/education/gordon-brown-scots-want-uk-wide-school-system-1-3445973

 

 

charles-austerity-418x390imagesvryDid You Know workfare unemployment statistics

 

The Next 10 Austerity Years – Who is promising what?

The Tories will:

* Markedly reduce spending on welfare.

* Enforce harsher immigration policies.

* Expand means-testing across ALL benefits and pensions, (including pensioners).

* Introduce fee paying education across the UK.

* extend workfare programmes for unemployed.

* Replace Trident, (£1Billion).

* Further strengthen the bedroom tax.

* Introduce/Retain 40p top rate income tax.

* Cut £30Billion out of the economy – from where? the pockets of the long serving public

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/10/05/tory-o05.html

 

 

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Labour Will:

* Markedly reduce spending on welfare.

* Enforce harsher immigration policies.

* Expand means-testing across ALL benefits and pensions, (including pensioners).

* Introduce fee paying education across the UK.

* extend workfare programmes for unemployed.

* Replace Trident, (£2Billion).

* Using Gordon Brown’s tactics cut £20billion out of the economy – From the pockets of the long suffering public.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/uk/labour-will-keep-austerity-says-miliband-1-3300839

 

 

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ULIP – Lib/Dem

Will comply and participate fully in the implementation of the the policies of whatever government is elected.

 

 

brown-thatcher_2532387b1924386_1583245425294772_2404802118282311511_nPM 'has full confidence in Osborne'. File photo dated 21/03/12 of Prime Minister David Cameron patting the arm of Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne after he delivered his Budget statement to the House of Commons, London, as Downing Street insisted today that the Prime Minister has Òfull confidenceÓ in George Osborne amid press reports that he is facing backbench pressure to sack the Chancellor. Issue date: Friday February 1, 2013. See PA story POLITICS Tories. Photo credit should read: PA Wire URN:15685387

 

The SNP will not implement any of the foregoing unfair austerity measures.

 

 

REFERENDUM _97Little ChickenHardie_elect

 

 

Vicki Greig Abuse of Impressionable young woman through Use of Lies About NHS Funding

The Lie: SNP to cut financial allocations to the NHS by 500K. The Vicky Greig Video

Mainstream media in support of “Better Together” spread the lie Vicky was raising the Spectre of Privatisation but this was not the case. She was referring to a maliciously mis-reported release, by a so called “whistleblower” of plans by Mr Salmond to DRASTICALLY cut NHS funding which would result in a reduction in the quality of exisiting service provision in Scotland. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ux34YUORtQk

The Truth:

http://news.stv.tv/politics/293405-nhs-planned-cuts-of-450m-a-myth-despite-leaked-report-msps-told/
http://www.bbc-now.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-29213416
http://www.thelyonyawns.com/?p=20

Vicky at the Ball 2

Vicky Greig at the Ball

Glasgow City Council & The West Of Scotland – Corruption – The Never Ending Story

The Creation of the Scottish Labour Branch

1997 Glasgow: Council Leader Bob Gould failed to get his own way over a package of cuts and shared his frustrations with a few friendly media hacks who duly went to print exposing allegations of fully funded holidays abroad, for Councillors, disguised as fact finding trips in return for horse trading deals ensuring controversial packages and other business would be assured of a safe passage through council.

The Scottish press, with the exception of a couple of, “leftish” rags attacked Labour Party Councils in the West of Scotland exposing and alleging a litany of scandals covering: nepotism, drugs, organised crime, sectarianism, vote rigging and bribery and harassment.

The public, still outraged by revelations exposed at the time of the demise of John Major and the Tory party were not at all pleased and demanded that a full enquiry should be fast track investigated and reported on without delay together with long outstanding investigations of allegations of a similar nature lodged against Paisley North and Monklands District Councils.

Donald Dewar, the Scottish Secretary of State was desperate to ensure there would be minimal disruption to Scottish politics at the time he was negotiating devolution, scheduled for 1999. He intervened in Monklands and ordered the immediate suspension and 2 year debarment from party office of the entire team of local Councillors. In Paisley a number of local constituency offices were closed on his instructions and a significant number of “active” party members were barred and or suspended. In Westminster the parliamentary whip was withdrawn from, Mohammed Sarwar, (Govan vote rigging allegations) and West Renfrewshire’s Tommy Graham, (suicide of Paisley South, MP Gordon McMaster).

Confident in his leadership of the Labour party and seizing the initiative provided by Donald Dewar Tony Blair decided to do to Glasgow what Kinnock had done to Derek Hatton and Liverpool. He ordered a full investigation into the activities of Councillors.

The inquiry was completed in 6 months. A total of 37 Councillors were interviewed at length by party officials from London, assisted by a number of Scottish Blairite supporting Party officials. The report recommended that disciplinary action should be taken against around a dozen senior Councillors, including where applicable suspension and or debarment from party office. These included, Lord provost Pat Lally, Deputy Provost Alex Mosson, “Whistle-blower”, Council Leader Bob Gould, Deputy Leader James Mutter and Head of Parks and Recreation Gordon McDairmid. Their fate would be decided by London.

Not content with the outcome of the inquiry the Scottish General Secretary of the Party, Jack McConnell, actively assisted by National Officers from London continued with their work intent upon exposing and dealing with anything that might reflect badly on the Party. Over a number of weeks many allegations and counter claims covering the full spectrum of excesses were made by an against Councillors and employees, usually through press leaks. Bob Gould eventually stood down from office.

The exposure of internal Council, “turf Wars” rife throughout the West of Scotland brought about the demise of many of the traditional left leaning party members being replaced with Blairites middle class opportunists. The oft quoted story about selection for office in the Labour party; “someone who wanted to be a candidate, was asked to outline his convictions. He thought they meant his criminal record and asked how far back they wanted him to go.”

The on-going activities of, “New labour” supporters created tension within the Party old guard in Scotland and claims of, “McCarthyism”. But relentless pressure and change created opportunity to place “New Labour” people in office bringing about the changes instructed by Blair & Brown in London. Control of Scotland was transferred to London.

But only the faces changed. Over the next 15 years Councils drifted back to their old ways of doing things. The time for remedial action presents itself again in 2015 & 2016. This time voters throughout the West of Scotland should say “enough is enough” and elect to office candidates of any party other than Labour.

Tony Blair’s “New Labour” promised to sweep away the old ideology of a political party. In Labour’s Scottish heartlands and birthplace, traditional socialists were dealt with severely, as Brian Deer’s investigation revealed. This is the best in depth report on the sickness that was and still is the Labour run councils in the West of Scotland. 15 years after a clean-up, corruption and scandal are bye-words again. http://briandeer.com/glasgow-labour.htm