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Have We Seen The Last Of Ruth Davidson in Scottish Politics Or Will The Tory Beast At Westminster Reject Her

 

 

 

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31 Aug 2018: Has Scotland Seen the Back of Ruth Davidson?

Ruth Davidson could quit Scottish politics after she has had her baby and become a Cabinet minister in London as a launch pad for a bid to be Tory leader.

She reportedly told friends that she could take up a peerage in the House of Lords so she could be parachuted into the Government.

If she makes the move to Whitehall she would immediately be one of the favourites to succeed Theresa May who announced recently she would stand down as leader of the party before the next General Election.

A spokesman for Ms Davidson would not deny that she has had speculative conversations with friends about her possible future in Westminster. (Daily Mail)

 

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Comment:

I am wondering if the Tory party is ready to be led by an “unmarried mother !!!!  given the historic and current condemnation of such mothers by senior members of the party.

The baby has been named, Finn Paul Davidson, (presumably recognizing the marital status of the birth mother) .

He was conceived following IVF treatment, provided by the NHS.  The identity of the sperm donor has not been divulged.

Time for a look back to Tory Party leaders pronouncements against unmarried mothers and Party policies directed at punishing unfortunate young woman who had babies out of wedlock.

 

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The Tory Party and Its Vilification of Unmarried Mothers

Rhodes-Boyson MP, way back in 1986, condemned single parents as ‘evil’ in having made their cases so well they expanded their subsidies from the public purse from some £1.5million in 1960 to £1billion in 1983.

But 1993 was the year in which the Tory Party pathologizing of single mothers reached its peak,  strategically exploited to initially usher in the freezing of one-parent benefit by the Tories.

It also paved the way for a proposal to scrap lone parent premium two years later (Conservative Party Budget, November 1996).

By the early 1990s, a frenzy of newspaper reports spread and heightened moral panic over the supposed splitting of our societal seams, and as press headlines asserted ‘Single Parents Cripple Lives’, it was women bringing up children on their own who were seen as culpable.

The then Home Secretary Michael Howard warned that the rise in single parents threatened the ideal of the traditional family, this, despite the fact that in 1993 only 17% of British families with children under 18 were one-parent families.

As “New Right” ideologies of the family started to dominate public discourse, the plan to pave the way for dramatic cuts in welfare benefit meant that more strategic attacks were needed to home in on those lone parents who were receiving most state support.

And so, at the (Conservative Party Conference in 1993 Peter Lilley attacked young never-married mothers as ‘benefits-driven’ and’ undeserving’ compared to those who had experienced a more traditional relationship.

He stated:

“A year ago I told you my goal was to close down the something-for-nothing society. The third main area of rising spending is on lone parents. There are now 1.3million of them.  Since the sixties their numbers have risen seven-fold and throughout that period it has been ‘politically incorrect’ to uphold the traditional family as an ideal. Earlier this year the decision was taken that the party would break that taboo.”

Former Tory Minister, George Young also informed the 1993 Tory Party Conference of new curbs to limit single mothers’ access to decent council accommodation so priority could be given to those in traditional relationships.

He said:

“How do we explain to the young couple who want to wait for a home before they start a family that they cannot be rehoused ahead of the unmarried teenager expecting her first, probably unplanned child?”

The Tory dominated media eagerly grabbed hold of the debates around illegitimacy and championed their moral crusade with tales of the supposed sexual promiscuity of single mothers, peppered with accounts of 14 year-old girls becoming pregnant.

But press space wasn’t given over to seeking answers to why adequate and inexpensive child-care wasn’t available. Rather,the tabloids chose to sink into a wave of derogatory condemnation.

Tory politicians also focused their comments on who was fit to parent, and Michael Howard, in his own ‘back-to-basics’ way, seized the moment to argue that:

“it would be a good thing if more unmarried mothers gave up their children for adoption.”

The Tory Secretary of State for Wales, John Redwood said:

“One of the biggest social problems of our day is the surge in single parent families.  What is worrying is the trend in some places for young women to have babies with no apparent intention of even trying a marriage or stable relationship with the father of the child.  The natural state should be the 2-adult family caring for their children.

Full article: (Happy Families? Single Mothers, the Press and the Politicians by Karen Atkinson, Sarah Oerton and Diane Burns)

 

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7 Nov 2016: Benefits cap a monstrous new assault on single mothers

The Tory Government stands accused of “chilling callousness” over the tougher new benefit cap that comes into force with immediate effect.

The National Secretary of the GMB said:

“This has echoes of the staggering hypocrisy and chilling callousness that saw the victimization of single mothers in the bad old days of the early 1990s.  The unfair benefit cap will shatter the life chances of the poorest children. Theresa May once said she would change the ‘nasty party’ but the mask has slipped again.” (The Express)

 

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14 Feb 2018: Tories stigmatize single parent families

According to a government policy report, (signed off by a host of prominent Tory figures) single parent families are costing society £47 billion annually.

During a debate on it in the Commons, Sir Edward Leigh said:

“There is an absolute wealth of evidence on the importance of marriage to the welfare of children, and a wealth of evidence that marriage works, in that couples are much more likely to stay together.” (Grimsby Live)

 

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7 Oct 2018: Conservative mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey: Single mums ‘deliberately become pregnant’ for benefits

Single girls in inner cities “deliberately become pregnant” in order to secure homes and benefits from the government, the Conservatives’ London mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey, wrote in 2006.

Bailey, wrote in the Telegraph that:

“any young girl living in the inner city will be clued up on how the system works. They won’t be too careful about not becoming parents. In some cases, they will deliberately become pregnant – as they know that if they do, they will get a flat. It is the same with benefits. These people are not stupid. If the state offers them money for doing something, they will do it. It is as simple as that.”

Bailey also wrote that the state needed to get away from the idea that it is “acceptable” to be a single mother.

He said:

“Many of the first single mums were housed in my part of London, reassuring them that it was acceptable – even desirable – for mothers to have babies on their own. That assumption is flawed because we now know that a child growing up without a father is so much more likely to be disadvantaged.”

In similar comments speaking at the Conservative party conference in 2008, Bailey also said

“There is a cottage industry in young women getting pregnant for state support. Girls getting knocked up to get housing? It’s a cottage industry where I come from.”

Bailey’s comments about single mothers follow his suggestion, in a policy paper he wrote in 2008 suggesting that:

“Hindu and Muslim communities rob Britain of its community,  contributing to the UK becoming a crime-riddled cesspool.” (The Business Insider)

 

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Reckless Homosexual Behaviour Saw an End to the Tory Party in Scotland – Ross Thomson ETAL Appear to Have Chosen to Ignore Behavioural Lessons From the Past – A History of Electoral Abuse Revealed

 

 

 

Tory MP Ross Thomson spoken to by police amid ‘sexual touching’ claims in Commons bar

It is alleged that:

Thomson repeatedly sexually assaulted three young men  having been three times escorted out  of the Commons Bar. He returned repeatedly to feel their bottoms and fondle their genitalia and tried to enter their underpants.

The Daily Mirror Reported

Scottish Tory MP Ross Thomson was spoken to by police after allegations were made of ‘sexual touching’ inside a House of Commons bar.  He is alleged to have sexually touched three men, but no formal allegation or arrest was made. Witnesses commented:

“I saw Thomson walk out of the Strangers Bar with a police officer.  He appeared to be “extremely drunk” and “slurring his words”.

“I saw Thomson in the corridor with a lot of police. At first everyone thought we were on lockdown which is your first thought when you see police.

“A friend alerted me to the fact that  Thomson was extremely drunk. It was quite busy and I looked over and it did seem that he was particularly drunk.”

“He was sort of staring into blank space, he was kind of swaying back and forth. Other MPs were excluding him from conversations and I think trying to persuade him to stop talking to people and leave.”

“He came over to my group, and was slurring his words, he couldn’t really string a sentence together.”

“He’d  tried to introduce himself to us but we couldn’t  understand what he was trying to say so we just left him and I think one of his colleagues came  and removed him.”

A spokesperson for the Scottish Conservatives said:

“We are aware of reports of an incident last night and the matter is being looked into. We have no further comment to make at this stage.”

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said:

“Police were called at approximately 23:00hrs on Tuesday, 5 February to a bar within the Palace of Westminster following a report of sexual touching. Officers attended and spoke to the parties involved. No formal allegations were made to the officers and no arrests were made.”

 

Douglas Mathewson Betrayed then dumped by his partner Ross Thomson commented on the police caution issued to Thomson for inappropriate homosexual behaviour in the House of Commons bar

https://twitter.com/dougiemathewson/status/1093188795061727233

This chap has form. See Below:

https://caltonjock.com/2017/09/14/westminster-debate-israel-palestine-tory-mp-for-aberdeen-south-ross-thomson-seizes-his-chance-to-donate-his-own-weird-and-wonderful-interpretation-of-recent-historical-events/

https://caltonjock.com/2017/05/23/ross-thomson-mp-six-times-rejected-by-the-aberdeen-electorate-now-lords-it-over-them-but-why-does-he-bite-the-hand-that-feeds-him/

 

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Betrayal then Meltdown – A Tory Party Predilection – A look Back Before Looking Forward

Prime Minister, John Major delivered a speech on 8 October 1993 highlighting disagreements within the party, over Europe:

“Disunity leads to opposition. Not just opposition in Westminster, but in the European Parliament and in town halls and county halls up and down this country. And if agreement is impossible, and sometimes on great issues it is difficult, if not impossible, then I believe I have the right, as leader of this party, to hear of that disagreement in private and not on television, in interviews, outside the House of Commons.”

He then changed the subject and attacked many of the changes in Britain since the Second World War, singling out developments in housing, education, and criminal justice:

“a world that sometimes seems to be changing too fast for comfort”.

He then continued:

“The old values – neighbourliness, decency, courtesy – they’re still alive, they’re still the best of Britain. They haven’t changed, and yet somehow people feel embarrassed by them. We shouldn’t be. It is time to return to those old core values, time to get back to basics, to self-discipline and respect for the law, to consideration for others, to accepting a responsibility for yourself and your family and not shuffling off on other people and the state.”

He mentioned the phrase once again near the conclusion of his speech:

“The message is clear and simple, we must go back to basics. We want our children to be taught the best, our public services to give the best, our British industry to be the best and the Conservative Party will lead the country back to those basic rights across the board. Sound money, free trade, traditional teaching, respect for the family and respect for the law. And above all, we will lead a new campaign to defeat the cancer that is crime.”

The year 1993 was also a time when Britain was going through a moral panic on the issue of single mothers. Government ministers regularly made speeches on the issue, such as John Redwood’s condemnation of “young women [who] have babies with no apparent intention of even trying marriage or a stable relationship with the father of the child”. and Peter Lilley’s characterization of single mothers as “benefit-driven” and “undeserving” from the same year.

Comment:

John Major’s government was defeated at the next GE and he left office in 1997. A few years after, it was revealed that he had conducted a four-year-long extra-marital affair with fellow Conservative MP Edwina Currie in the 1980s. The liaison occurred when both were back-benchers. Currie disclosed the romance in her diaries, published in 2002, adding that she considered the “Back to Basics” campaign to have been “absolute humbug”.

 

CARTOONS by Frank Boyle:: The Scottish Tories, along with ...

 

 

 

John Major Set High Standards for His MP’s To Follow – Many Failed – Remember Eastwood?

Alan Stewart (d2016)

In 1997 the East Renfrewshire constituency of Eastwood was considered to be the safest Tory seat in Scotland. A bell-weather prized hold in Scotland.

Allan Stewart had been the Tory MP for Eastwood for a decade and a half. A former government minister on two occasions, he was respected within the constituency and throughout Scotland by Tory’s and political opponents alike.

That is, until the anti-motorway protest of 1992, (1) when he turned up at Pollok Park, worse the wear for drink, accompanied by two teenagers carrying air pistols and threatened protestors with a pick-axe handle. (2)

Known from that time as the “Beast of Eastwood”, he destroyed the carefully created and protected public image of himself being a happily married family man with two children and an astute politician with an assured future in politics.

Stewart had problems with alcohol – a fact known to many within the constituency – but he was not short of help and advice from people in his inner circle of friends and was provided with “secret” treatment at a clinic – in Scotland. It was the Tory way no less. But there is nothing secret for very long in Scottish politics and the press revealed the truth to the public.

The incident at Pollok Park and the revelations about his alcoholism were not a hammer blow to his aspirations for re-election but the release of details of his on-going affair with Catherine ‘Bunny’ Knight, a married mother of four (whom he had met at a “drying out” clinic) was a killer blow to his campaign. He withdrew his nomination for re-election and resigned.

Notes:

(1). This was the time when the dreadlocked Gael Colin MacLeod (deceased) became famous as the “Birdman of Pollok” after spending nine days in the branches of a beech tree in a bid to prevent it being cut down by Wimpey construction workers. He was then joined by a small group of locals angered that the £53m motorway was being built through seven miles of heavily wooded land in Pollok Park which had been bequeathed to the people of Glasgow by Sir John Stirling Maxwell.

Macleod proclaimed: “Pollok Estate was given to the people in 1939. Once given it cannae be ungiven, it can only be stolen.” Ultimately, the campaign to halt the motorway and save the 5,000 trees cut down to make way for it failed.

(2). Stewart was subsequently tried, convicted and fined £200 at Paisley Sherrif Court. His son, Gareth, and friend David Clow, both 17, pleaded guilty to possessing loaded air pistols without lawful authority in the same incident. Sentence on them was deferred for a year.

 

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Sir Michael Hirst

There’s nothing more satisfying to the Scottish psyche than the degradation of the great and the good, particularly when their rise has been accompanied by a large dose of pomposity.

Stewart’s untimely resignation, presented problems but these were soon resolved by the speedy selection of a “safe pair of hands” leading Scottish Tory politico, Sir Michael Hirst, a clean-cut father of three, a partner in a distinguished accounting firm, an elder in the Church of Scotland Chairman of the Scottish Tory Party.

But, within days of his nomination process, stories began to circulate, (reputedly from Tory’s worried his past indiscretions would surface) that Hirst was a closet homosexual, who had betrayed his wife and family by having gay affairs with political colleagues.

Hirst withdrew his nomination, hoping the press and the public would lose interest.(3)  Not to be denied the truth of the matter the press continued to investigate and report on the allegations and the day following Hirst’s resignation (4) it was revealed that he’d not only been involved in homosexual activities with a number of men, he’d been most involved with a man connected to the Tories’ biggest payola scandal.

Conspiracy or malice, events proved the events at Eastwood to be a “masterpiece” of a cock-up. Stewart had a nervous breakdown. Hirst not only withdrew his nomination he was forced to resign, in disgrace, from his position as Party Chairman, (5) resulting in losses at the GE which almost wiped the Tory Party, in Scotland from the political map.

Notes:

(3). Married Sir Michael Hirst was forced to quit as chairman of the Scottish Conservatives as a result of indiscretions (homosexual dalliances).

(4) Hirst’s letter of resignation, read: “I very deeply regret these circumstances which have caused great distress to my family and which may, I fear, cause embarrassment to the Party in the current climate”.

(5) Hirst, life after death: http://scottishlaw.blogspot.com/2011/03/new-chairman-of-law-societys-master.html

 

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Ian Lang

Then Scottish Secretary, (President of the Board of Trade (and Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, 1995-97), Ian Lang was accused of covering up the “Gay” double life of shamed Party Chairman, Hirst.

The allegations were that he failed to follow up on Hirst’s denial of alleged flings with former researcher, Andrew Barnett and personal assistant, Paul Martin. (6) and (7)

It later transpired that at a Party Conference in Brighton, two years before, Barnett had spoken publicly about his affair with Hirst. A senior Tory said: “This goes all the way to Ian Lang.” Astonishingly, some party workers had known about Hirst’s gay secret for ten years.

It was also revealed that Hirst hadn’t the courage to tell his wife about his secret life or that it was was about to be made public.

Jackson Carlaw tried to play down the stunning events and said that many in the party were “distraught” that the chairman had had to resign. But he claimed this had hardened the resolve of party workers to win their target seats.

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/SCANDAL%3b+Tory+top+brass+covered+up+for+gay-shame+Hirst.-a061018638

 

Notes:

(6). The downfall of the Tory’s in Scotland is a consequence of homosexual intrigues within the party created by a “gay mafia” whose tentacles of power stretched from the party’s grass-roots through to the top of the party.

Scots Secretary Michael Forsyth’s agent, Simon Turner – the man running his election campaign –was openly gay. And it was two other ambitious young gays who brought about the downfall of Scots Tory chairman Sir Michael Hirst. They were his former researcher Andrew Barnett and campaign worker Paul Martin.

Barnett, tried to deny any close relationship with Hirst – but a Tory insider said: “The affair was well-known.” The relationship between Hirst and Barnett ended in tears two years ago.

Devastated that the affair was over, Barnett poured his heart out to Tory grandees at the Brighton conference in 1995.

One Tory source said: “Andrew was made a fool. He was very upset. Heis a decent man and I felt sorry for him.” Another Tory close to the debacle at the time said: “Andrew doted on Hirst. But when it was time for him to move on he, understandably, felt spurned.”

Despite the sleaze that engulfed the party, there were some old- fashioned Tories determined to stick to their tradition of family values. It was they who blew the whistle on Hirst  because they were sickened by his double standards.

The complaint arrived at the desk of Ian Lang, Scots Secretary at the time. Another party insider said: “The matter was referred to Ian Lang, but Hirst denied the affair.”

Barnett’s affair with Hirst began in the early 1990s. The former chairman of the Tory Association at St. Andrews University, was working as a researcher in Hirst’s office. It was the second time Hirst, the promoter of family values, had been embroiled in a homosexual affair with a young Tory hopeful.

He struck up a relationship with Paul Martin who worked in the campaign team in 1987 when Hirst lost the Bearsden and Strathkelvin seat to Labour’s Sam Galbraith.

Martin was given the elbow when word spread that he had been talking openly about his fling with father-of-three Hirst.

Concern was growing within the constituency association and Hirst was advised that Martin had to go to avert a scandal. Instead of taking action against Hirst, they moved swiftly to ensure that he was protected and Martin was sent packing.

One source close to the situation at the time said: “The Association was alarmed at all this loose talk and Michael was told he had to get rid of Martin. “He did, but gave him a very good reference to help him get a job. Soon after he stood down he got a top post in the CBI.”

Martin, had been a Tory Councillor in Edinburgh at the age of 21. Three years before, while employed by the Ministry of Defence, he was at the centre of allegations that he was part of a gay love triangle with English Tory whip Michael Brown and 20-year-old student Adam Morris. He was quite open about his fling with Hirst and boasted about it at a Tory conference.

One insider said: “Martin is trouble. He is a vindictive old queen.”

It has been revealed that the gay links with the Tory party stretch from grass-roots wannabes to the very top of the tree.

Top Tories have always been uncomfortable with Forsyth’s choice of an open homosexual like Turner for such a high-profile job.

They were also critical of other gay appointments made at the Scottish Tory HQ when Forsyth was party chairman. One source told the Record: “There is always the worry that even a whiff of scandal attached to these people would reflect badly on Forsyth.”

As events unfolded in the Eastwood constituency last week, a small band of high- ranking Tories gathered to make sure Hirst didn’t try to replace Allan Stewart. It was they who tried to get Hirst sidelined two years ago when the Barnett affair broke.

One senior Tory said: “We thought if we didn’t get rid of him he would get rid of us. “No-one listened to us although we tried hard to get him moved to a more junior post. The powers that be are now reaping the inevitable result. “It would not surprise me if someone in our own party shopped Michael to the press because of his own open arrogance.”

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/GAY+MAFIA+BURIES+TORIES%3B+Homosexual+links+lead+to+downfall+of+Scots…-a061018639

 

(7). Tory Ministers face questions over the secret appointment, to the Civil Service, of a Tory advisor, at the centre of allegations about an illegal homosexual affair.

Paul Martin, formerly a high-profile Conservative Councillor in Edinburgh and twice a candidate at general elections, was appointed to the allegedly politically neutral Civil Service.

Martin, a convicted drink-driver, has been suspended from his position as an official in the Nato and European policy secretariat after being named with the Tory MP Michael Brown, in newspaper allegations about a homosexual relationship with an under-age boy. (The Independent)

 

 

 

Michael Forsyth:

Forsyth Scottish Secretary (1995-97) was attacked by Tory colleagues over his vanishing act at the time of the unravelling of a series of sleaze scandals. They also gave warning his lack of leadership would affect his political future.

A senior party insider said last night: “His failure to lead from the front has astonished and disappointed us all. “It’s almost as if he has conceded defeat in the election and is waiting for the meltdown to happen so he can be a big player and power- broker in a new ultra right-wing Conservative Party.”

Opponents dubbed Forsyth “The Phantom” because he had not been seen nor heard off on the political hustings since the election was called. He even sent backbench MPs to represent him in TV debates. And he has came up with a series of weak excuses for his absence.

First, it was said he was carrying on “the business of government” in London. Then it was said he was attending to constituency duties – although opponents claimed he had not been seen on the ground in Stirling.

 

David Cameron Photos Photos - The Scottish Conservative ...

 

 

The 1997 General Election

The Tory Party was almost wiped out in Scotland, a consequence of the appalling behaviour of many of their MP’s. Scots would no longer tolerate the underhand betrayal of values, held dear by many voters. The suffering, abuse and excesses inflicted upon Scots by a group of individuals whose morals and actions mirrored that of a snake, was at an end.

The voters of Eastwood had been betrayed and abused more so than in some other constituencies. Family values had been ditched by the incumbent Tory MP Alan Stewart, his drunken affair with a married woman and an attack on a constituent with a pickaxe handle.

And, “rubbing salt into raw wounds” the Tory candidate Sir Michael Hirst, who replaced him was then revealed to be a “chancer” who betrayed his wife and family, engaging with Party colleagues in a number of secret homosexual affairs over many years.

Reflecting on the foregoing the voters of Eastwood were determined to ensure the return to Westminster, of an MP who would be an upright citizen, a pillar of the community, preferably married and settled in the constituency,

A young man entered the fray, Glasgow born, (ex South African resident) Labour Party supporter, Jim Murphy, a clean cut, soccer playing, fitness fanatic who had avoided the South African military draft by fleeing the country, taking up his further education at university in Glasgow, at which he was soon elected leader of the Student Union.

His candidacy required him to abandon his university studies giving up the chance of gaining a degree, but Jim was dedicated and wished only to contribute to the common good of Eastwood residents.

Murphy was duly elected to represent Eastwood in 1997 and was re-elected in the GE’s of 2001, 2005 and 2010. But all good things come to an end and Murphy’s demise was swift after his involvement in a number of scandals was revealed to the public. (8)

 

Notes:

(8). In 2010, a commission chaired by Sir Thomas Legg demanded Murphy repay £577.46 in expenses which he had over-claimed. He did not appeal, and repaid the money in full. Expenses documents made available also showed he claimed over one million pounds between 2001 and 2012.

In 2007/8 he claimed £3,900 for food, £2,284 for petty cash and £4,884 for a new bathroom. He claimed £249 for a TV set and a further £99 for a TV stand; £1762.50 of taxpayers money paid for Murphy’s website whilst further claims included Labour party adverts in the local press. He claimed almost £2000 of public cash to pay private accountants to handle his tax returns.

In 2012 Murphy was among a group of 27 MPs named as benefiting from up to £20,000 per year expenses to rent accommodation in London, at the same time as letting out property they owned in the city. Although the practice did not break rules, it has been characterized as a “loophole” that allowed politicians to profit from Commons allowances.

He also designated his constituency home in Glasgow (where his wife and family permanently resided) as his second home for which he claimed £780 a month in mortgage interest payments in 2007/8.

Murphy had, had the audacity to previously to apologize to the public, “on behalf of all politicians” for the expenses scandal in 2009.

In 2011, “Wikileaks” revealed details of his secretive leading role in 2009, organizing the support of opposition parties, promoting the implementation of the Commission on Scottish Devolution’s recommendations. The aim was to “block an independence referendum” in Scotland.

Murphy praised the “vital” role of NATO during the military intervention in the 2011 Libyan crisis resolution, stating that Libya had been set “on a path to censure, democratic and peaceful future”. Libya remains a failed state eight years later. Nato’s actions resulted in the death and destruction of the people of Libya on a horrendous scale.

Later that year, Murphy was moved to the “non-job” post of Shadow Secretary of State for International Development in a “purge of Blairites” by Ed Miliband. His unease with the Labour leader’s decision to oppose military action in Syria is thought to have contributed to the move.

Murphy then stepped down stating he had agreed to take a more prominent role in the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum campaign supporting “Better Together” to keep Scotland in the UK.

 

Scots Need To Exercise Caution – Ultra Right Wing ...

 

 

The Tory Party-post 1997.

The party was wiped out in Scotland in the 1997 Labour landslide victory which brought 18 years of Conservative rule, to an end. John Major resigned as party leader, saying “When the curtain falls, it is time to leave the stage”.

The appalling results led to a number of years of infighting as different factions jostled for power and in result the Party returned only a single MP from Scotland at the 2001, 2005, 2010 and 2015 general elections.

Scots have long memories and would no longer tolerate being ruled by a political party in which power is in the hands of a cabal of individuals whose motivation is driven by unbridled excess, avarice and machismo.

The MP returned to Westminster, in 2001, (scraping through with a majority of just 74 votes) was Peter Duncan, representing Galloway and Upper Nithsdale making him the sole Tory MP for the whole of Scotland and the first Tory MP to be returned from Scotland since 1997.

Duncan was a successful local businessman, a “pillar of the community”. He was also very happily married, with two children.

In the election campaign the Tory party media moguls had promised the public that the Party had learned from its mistakes and in rejecting the unacceptable behaviour of the past could be

trusted once again. Apart from electing Duncan, the people of Scotland did not believe the hype. (9)

In November 2003 Duncan was appointed, Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland and was later named as Chairman of the Scottish Conservative Party. His constituency was abolished for the 2005 general election and replaced by Dumfries and Galloway. He failed to win the new seat.

Notes:

(9) True to form, the clean cut image of Peter Duncan, was later sullied by the release of information by “The Ferret” revealing he was the Chairman of the shadowy Scottish Unionist Association Trust (SUAT) that had secretly donated nearly £320K to Scottish Tory election campaigns between 2001-2019.

Termed “dark money” by the press, it was identified that half of the salary (around £20K) of David Mundell’s, 2014 and 2017 GE, campaign manager had been paid by the Association, the other half being met by the Scottish Borders Conservative & Unionist Association (SBCUA).

The groups also jointly funded a campaign manager for Tory MP John Lamont in Berwickshire, Roxburgh & Selkirk in 2015 and 2017.

Mundell was cagey when asked by a BBC interviewer if he had benefited from the trust’s cash. He said:

“I personally have not received cash because we go through a process of funding associations and I am confident that over the full period during which I have been involved in politics, all donations I have received from any source have been appropriately declared.”

Asked how much money his campaign had received, he said:

“That is a question that can be sourced from all the declarations.”

A statement released by the SNP said:

“The Tory dark money scandal is a running embarrassment for the party, and they’re doing themselves no favours in trying to hide from scrutiny. David Mundell has repeatedly tried to deny his links to the Scottish Unionist Association Trust. Now it seems they helped bankroll his election campaign. We’re talking about one of the most senior Tories in Scotland here. He should be open and honest over where this money came from. Transparency over party finances is absolutely essential in any healthy democracy. The public have the right to know who helped put their politicians into office.”

More about the SUAT:

The SUAT is not registered with Companies House, the Financial Conduct Authority, nor Scotland’s charity watchdog and there is no public information about who currently manages the organization, and no public accounts to indicate donors or assets.

SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford brought up the SUAT in the House of Commons and was shouted down by loudly braying Tory MPs as he accused the party of buying democracy. He said:

“the Tory’s in Scotland are systematically shielding their donations from public scrutiny.”

A few days later, the SUAT released a statement through the PR company of “trustee” former MP, Peter Duncan revealing that the “trust” had been formed in 1968 from the “assets” of the (then) Scottish Unionist Association, (primarily from the “historic proceeds of raffles and tombolas and sales of property).

The cash “assets” had been invested and the proceeds were being made available to further the aims of the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party.

A week later Duncan announced he would be standing down from SUAT because he wanted “more separation” between its work and his role as an active political lobbyist, Which precluded his involvement with any political party.

No other information has been forthcoming and yet again Scots are on the receiving end of Tory abuse of the electorate. The leopard has not changed its spots.

 

Ruth Davidson, the Conservatives’ northern star - Bagehot

 

 

 

David Mundell

2005-2010

The 2005 GE was conducted under new arrangements introduced by the Boundary Commission which established new constituencies in Scotland reducing the number of MP’s from 72 to 59 reflecting the new parliament at Holyrood.

The outcome of the election could not be accurately predicted since, on paper the changes had created a number of marginal seats. But one thing became

evident in the outcome. While the Tory Party gained a number of seats in England, in Scotland it was still a dead duck at the polls.

The one MP returned was David Mundell who was elected to the new seat of Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale.

Mundell had previously been elected to Holyrood in 1999 and 2003, as the Tory “list” MSP for the South of Scotland. This gained him an advantage over the other candidates since he had been politically active in the largely rural area for area for over 6 years.

The background of the former lawyer also appeared to be impeccable. He was happily married to a local teacher and had three children.

Of note, in his campaign literature was that he took great care to ensure he would not be over associated with the Tory Party by omitting any mention of it. Instead he promoted himself as being the only person capable of preventing the Labour candidate from winning. This allowed him to garner the farming communities to his cause.

He also committed himself to his constituents emphasizing his independent thinking regardless of Tory Party policy. At this early stage he impressed as an astute politician with an eye on a fruitful political future.

At Westminster he plotted a course of action, the completion of which would place him at the political heart of the Party at Westminster.

The key move was his ready acceptance of David Cameron and his cohorts, the new kids on the block. His reward was the very early promotion in 2005, to the post of, Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland, which he retained until 2010.

He also declared his politics would be to the “right wing” of the party by joining the “Cornerstone Group” a powerful political organization of Tories whose core focus espoused traditional values of: Faith, Flag, and traditional marriage. (10)

His time in office as Shadow Secretary brought with it an extended period of political infighting within the Tory Party in Scotland the savagery of which horrified many Scottish political commentators and disgusted many voters. (11)

 

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2010-2015

The GE of 2010 was conducted against the background of the abject failure of the Labour Party to protect the Nation from the excesses of financial gangsters due to incompetent management of the economy.

Yet again the Tory party in Scotland was rejected by Scots, save Mundell who was returned to Westminster, albeit with a much reduced majority.

The nationwide result was a hung parliament where no party was able to command a majority in the House of Commons. A coalition government of Conservatives and Liberal Democrats was formed.

Mundell’s long held aspiration for high office was denied him since the Liberal Democrats’ held a greater number of Scottish seats.

He had to be content with the non-cabinet role of Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland.

The Calman Report exposed Mundell and the Tory Party negativity towards Scottish devolution. (12)

In February 2011 the Scotland Office was accused of being a political propaganda unit maintained to retain supremacy over Scotland. Twenty staff were employed to cope with just three letters a day, at an annual cost to Scotland of £6m. An astonishing revelation which sparked calls for it to be scrapped as an irrelevant waste of cash.

The Scotland Office occupied plush Dover House in Whitehall and is supposed to look after Scotland’s interests down south. But its role has shrunk dramatically since devolution in 1999.

The 20 staff, who are employed to deal with mail replied to 1252 letters in 2006-2007 – just over one per member of staff every week. The letter scandal follows a series of damning reports on money-wasting at the department.

 

 

 

2015-2016

Yet again the Tory Party emerged victorious from the election campaign, in England, despite promising many more years of cuts in public expenditure and even more austerity.

But, in Scotland it was a different matter. The SNP won 56 of the 69 seats with 50% of the vote.

Labour came a very poor second and was left with only one seat.

The Tories held onto their one seat, but their overall vote in Scotland declined significantly.

Mundell retained his seat, with a reduced majority of 798.

The Liberal Democrats paid the largest price for their time in Coalition with the Tories, emerging with one seat.

Yet, in 2015, emboldened by his re-election and appointment as Scottish Secretary he announced that the Human Rights Act would be scrapped when the UK left the EC.

The Scottish government said it would “robustly oppose” withdrawal from the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) stating that the Scotland Act (1998) stated all legislation passed by Holyrood must be compatible with the ECHR.

Mundell flatly rejected the Scottish Government’s opposition stating it was for him to decide. One of many clashes between Mundell and the Scottish Government, all displaying his arrogance to anything political originating in Scotland.

In January 2016 Mundell stunned Scots with a public statement that he was homosexual.

The media spin promoted the story that he enjoyed the support of his family, but this was not entirely accurate since only his son and political protege, Oliver, a list MSP at Holyrood, spoke out in favour of his announcement.

It emerged later that Mundell had been separated (divorced 2012) from his Schoolteacher wife Lynda and three children some time before 2010.

A betrayal mirroring that of Sir Michael Hirst yet he remains unscathed!! (13)

 

Notes:

(10). https://caltonjock.com/2016/12/10/heterosexism-promoted-by-the-tory-party-cornerstone-group-founder-member-david-mundell-comes-out-of-the-closet-i-wonder-what-the-group-think-of-that

(11). In the first half of 2007, just before the Scottish Tory Party conference, information was released anonymously to the press.

The front page headlines read: “Scots Tories are clueless – by Scotland’s only Tory MP.”

The headline had been created using information contained in a four-page memo Mundell had written to David Cameron written some months earlier in which he was scathing about Tory MSPs’ abilities saying:

“Whilst it is possible to agree in principle that the party in Scotland can make its own policy on devolved matters, the simple lack of thinkers is apparent.”

He also urged a purge of lame-duck MSP’s and the speedy appointment of a new Scottish Party Chairman, new Scottish Party Leader and a new management team comprising strategic thinkers.

His advice prevailed and the Scottish Tory party was subjected to a brutal “putch” which brought Ruth Davidson, and her team of wanabee’s into the Scottish public domain.

(12). https://caltonjock.com/2019/01/18/arch-plotter-david-mundell-more-damaging-to-scottish-aspirations-for-self-government-than-any-other-politician-in-history/

(13). Living the lie. How does he match his sexuality with his support of the Tory right wing Cornerstone Group?

 

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Removing the Bias From Scottish Broadcasting – This is the Solution Pass it On to Nicola Sturgeon Please

 

 

 

 

 

A History of Scotland (TV series)

 

Introduction

Scotland’s Gaelic TV channel BBC Alba, attracts many more Scottish viewers than there are Gaelic speakers and the potential for growth is well recognized in the trade.

Independent programme makers in Scotland produce quality television for the station but in insufficient quantity to fully support the channel.

The channel broadcasts for around 7 hours daily and comprises a 70/30 split in favour of BBC content.

The BBC has a commitment to provide quality programmes and does this by raiding the extensive BBC archives searching for content from yesteryear which it broadcasts with increasing frequency.

The tactic allows the BBC to claim it is supporting the channel at great cost since it applies the current charge out rate for the old repeats.

 

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Funding

Lack of finance has always been a major factor preventing expansion, a historical consequence of the Westminster government’s resistance to the creation of the channel despite being a signatory to the (1998) European Declaration on Minority Languages which committed the Westminster government to supporting Gaelic, Doric and Scots through funding and support of a broadcasting service.

At that time the Westminster government accepted a commitment to have a new channel, (fully funded by a Westminster government direct grant mirroring the Welsh SC4 model) up and running by 2003.

Alba first broadcast in 2008, soon after the minority SNP took up government at Holyrood.

The 10 year delay was attributed to resistance from the UK Treasury which refused to provide the  £100m plus budget similar to that already in place in support of the Welsh language channel.

The breakthrough was achieved by the SNP government who applied pressure forcing the Westminster government to increase the block grant by £10m.

The BBC committed to supporting the new channel and formed a joint venture partnership with the Gaelic Broadcasting Agency.

It also promised up to £4m of programming content.

Broadcasting on a shoestring the new channel proved to be a bit “hairy” in the first months, as it became evident it was hopelessly underfunded (SC4 the Welsh language channel had a Westminster financed operational budget of £110m).

The under-funding was corrected by the SNP government, which provided £10m, new money (without an increase in the block grant) and the BBC, responding to pressure from the SNP government increasing its programming support to £8m. Again charging current charge out rates for old progammes. Real worth probably nearer £2m.

Financing of the £110m SC4 Welsh channel was transferred to the BBC by the Westmnister government regularizing broadcasting finance. Nice one £110m to Wales and £4m to Scotland. Hardly fair to Scotland

 

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Programming

Many more Scots non-Gaelic speakers than the targeted audience view the channel regularly, which is attributed to the creative programming of the Gaelic Broadcasting Agency and the broadcasting of “live” rugby, soccer and other niche sports.

 

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The future

Scottish Government’s policy is:

“To encourage inward investment in film and television production in Scotland, and use our new overseas network to promote Scotland as a location for film and television production.

We plan to continue the existing fiscal incentives for such production, and, within the first term of an independent Scottish parliament, we propose to look at ways to encourage further development in the sector, through incentives, infrastructural investment and support for development, skills and training.”

The Westminster government can no longer claim to be supporting “Alba” and the BBC commitment to Scotland is pathetic in comparison with the £110m finance it provides to the SC4 channel.

The use of optional sub-titles is not yet a common feature, but increasing use of “streaming” programming coupled with additional funding, through the Scottish government should address the issue.

Programme content needs to be expanded and improved upon and can be achieved by the SNP government significantly increasing financial support and expansion of the remit of the Gaelic Broadcasting Agency to include the presentation of “live” news and current affairs programmes free from the influence of the BBC.

Phantom Power Films are one example. They produce excellent television standard films and these and others deserve to be viewed by a wider Scots audience.

The changes need to be put in place now to ensure Scots can be provided with information about their country free of the bias of the “Unionist” State media that has done so much harm to Scotland.

 

Phantom Power Films Archives | Inform Scotland Inform Scotland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Arch Plotter David Mundell – More Damaging to Scottish Aspirations for Self Government Than Any Other Politician In History

 

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The impact of the 2007 Holyrood election of the SNP to government

The Holyrood election of 2007 elected an SNP minority government, turning on its head the weird and wonderful electoral system designed by the Unionist party’s with blocking mechanisms to ensure there would never be an SNP government.

To say there was panic in the Unionist ranks would be an understatement. Urgent and secret meetings were convened by the Westminster Unionist party’s at the highest level. with a remit to agree a joint response to the very real threat, (assuming a successful SNP government) of Scotland leaving the Union.

The outcome was, “The Calman Commission” a wide ranging group of Scottish based “intelligentsia” who would bring forward agreed proposals for change, increasing the devolved powers of the Scottish Parliament, short of independence.

The SNP government declined the invitation to participate since the purpose of the party was to gain independence and this was not included in the remit of the group.

 

Kenneth Calman

 

 

The Calman Commission

The Commission was established in March 2008, to be an independent review of the experience of Scottish devolution since 1998 and had the support of both the Unionist party’s at Westminster and Holyrood. It had the following terms of reference:

“To review the provisions of the Scotland Act 1998 in the light of experience and to recommend any changes to the present constitutional arrangements that would enable the Scottish Parliament to serve the people of Scotland better, that would improve the financial accountability of the Scottish Parliament and that would continue to secure the position of Scotland within the United Kingdom.”

 

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Calman & commission members

 

The Commission report

The commission produced it’s final report in Jun 2009 and the Lib/Dem coalition government brought forward final recommendations on 29 May 2010.

The contribution of Mundell (at Westminster) to the process (see below) was disloyal being totally at odds with that of Annabel Goldie, Leader of the Scottish Conservatives who actively participated in the work of the commission and was instrumental in bringing forward proposals.

His entirely negative diatribe exposed the true intentions of the Tory Party which was to wreck any agreement for change, as they did in 1979.

That the agreement did evolve into an acceptable White Paper in May 2010 was only possible due to the election of a coalition government which forced Mundell and his ilk to accept watered down proposals.

And Mundell was not appointed to the position of Scottish Secretary which reduced his influence over affairs.

Also of note is Carmichael’s comments which were rightly critical of Mundell’s unwelcome contribution to the debate.

Mundell’s behaviour should be set against his performance as Secretary of State for Scotland, from 2015. The most disingenuous person ever to have held the position.

 

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The Calman Commission Report and Agreed Recommendations for Change – A debate in the House of Commons

Jim Murphy (Secretary of State for Scotland) Labour

Scots are proud of the Scottish Parliament and the way that it allows them to find what the late Donald Dewar called “Scottish solutions to Scottish problems”. While Britain brings strength to Scotland, Scotland brings breadth to Britain.

The White Paper that we are publishing today takes forward the recommendations from the final report of the Commission on Scottish Devolution.

On 15 June this year, I welcomed the commission’s report on behalf of the Government. I pledged to take the recommendations forward, with consensus and momentum. That is why we established a cross-party steering group.

I thank representatives of the Labour party, the Liberal Democrats and the Conservative party in the House of Commons and in the Scottish Parliament for working together on that group.

The commission concluded that devolution has been a “remarkable and substantial success”. It brings government closer to the people of Scotland and secures Scotland’s position within the United Kingdom.

In order to refresh the settlement, the commission made recommendations in three distinct areas:

1. That closer working was needed between the UK Parliament and the Scottish Parliament and between the UK Government and the Scottish Government.

2. That a new, more accountable means of financing devolved spending in Scotland was needed, to strengthen the financial accountability of the Scottish Parliament.

3. That while the division of responsibilities between the UK Parliament and the Scottish Parliament works well, some changes could be made in both directions to further strengthen the devolution settlement.

The Government agrees with the commission’s conclusions, which were based on a wealth of evidence.

 

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Responding – David Mundell, the lone Scottish Tory MP at Westminster

I thank the Secretary of State for his statement, for the advance notice of it and for the extent to which both he and his predecessor have engaged with fellow Unionist politicians in Scotland during the Calman process.

The Conservatives fully supported the setting up of the commission and have played a full part in its work and (mindful of the under-noted questions) I look forward to reading the White Paper.  But:

1. Does the Secretary of State concede that the timing of it so near an election inevitably means that the issue will have to be revisited by the next Government?

2. Does he acknowledge that his Government’s White Paper will not bind any incoming Conservative Government?

“Conservatives accept that the Scottish Parliament needs to be more financially accountable, that the devolution settlement needs to be tidied up and that Westminster and Holyrood need to start working constructively together for the good of Scotland and Britain, but we will ensure those things through our own White Paper, not this Government’s proposals launched in the dying days of this Parliament.”

3. Will the Secretary of State welcome that commitment and undertake to continue in the spirit of Calman, on the basis of consensus and momentum, regardless of who is in government, and resist the temptation to play party politics with such an important issue as Scotland’s constitution?

4. Will the Secretary of State acknowledge that the guiding principle in deliberations on the Calman process has been, and must continue to be, securing Scotland’s position within the United Kingdom?

5. Is he as heartened as I am by recent polling in Scotland that demonstrates that there is very little support for separatism and an independence referendum?

6. Does he accept Sir Kenneth Calman’s view that the establishment of better working relationships between the British Government and the Scottish Government and between the Parliaments here and at Holyrood must be in place to underpin every other recommendation in his report?

7. Given that most of the measures to improve relationships do not require any legislation, can he tell us what he will do to re-establish the good will between Westminster and Holyrood, which appears to have ebbed away?

8. Whatever differences we may have with the Labour Government about how to take forward the Calman recommendations, may I invite the Secretary of State to agree with me that they are as nothing compared with the divide between us and the Scottish National party?

9. We are Unionists; they are separatists. We are in the mainstream of the constitutional debate; they are on the extreme. However, does the Secretary of State also agree that there are no grounds for complacency?

10.The Calman commission contrasts markedly with the so-called “national conversation”, whose main participants appear to be insomniac cyber-nats. Is it not the case that the First Minister of Scotland’s publicly funded, self-indulgent chit-chat will not survive?

 

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Alistair Carmichael- For the Liberal Democrats.

I, too, thank the Secretary of State for his statement and for advance sight of it prior to coming to the Chamber.

I also place on record my party’s gratitude to Sir Kenneth Calman and the members of his commission for their very substantive and substantial piece of work.

On the substance of the White Paper and the Secretary of State’s statement, I am completely in support of the Government’s position, which is of practical as well as constitutional significance.

However, I must ask the Secretary of State what his White Paper really adds to the process apart from further delaying implementation when there is consensus, and giving the Conservatives an opportunity for the sort of backsliding that we have just seen from Mr Mundell.

I listened to the hon. Member for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale (David Mundell) speaking about producing another White Paper the other side of a general election, and I could almost hear the ghost of Sir Alec Douglas-Home speaking prior to the 1979 referendum.

He also promised that we would get something better from the Conservatives, but they betrayed us after the 1979 election, and they would betray us again tomorrow given half a chance which, fortunately, they are unlikely to get.

May I also remind the Secretary of State that Calman was established because we wanted to make the UK work better?

In order to do that, we must now move forward with the work that Calman acknowledged needed to be done, and we must find a needs-based formula to replace the Barnett formula.

When will the Secretary of State and the Government understand that serious threats to the future of the Union, which exist, can come from the south as well as the north of the border?

Comment

Carmichael was astute in his statement, giving warning of the wilful intent of Mundell and the Tory Party to yet again betray Scotland so that they would be able to retain power at Westminster.

The disgraceful behaviour of Mundell, undermining the contribution to the commission report of Annabel Goldie, the Scottish Tory Party Leader and then plotting against her bringing about her removal from office, and replacement with the MI5 supported Ruth Davidson is truly reprehensible.

https://caltonjock.com/2018/05/27/scottish-secretary-of-state-david-mundell-mp-clueless-bunch-of-no-hoper-tory-msps-still-in-place-despite-purge-indicative-of-a-dearth-of-tory-political-talent/

 

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Westminster Governance of Scotland Policies – Post Brexit – Rule Britannia

 

 

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Post Brexit the Tory Party Will Continue to Govern Scotland With Mutual Respect

David Mundell, (affectionately known as “Fluffy”) will remain in office as Scottish Secretary.

He is an accredited mediator in “Alternative Dispute Resolution”, which has proved to be a useful tool in his successful time in office.

The “Barnett Formula” is a red rag to the Tory Party and a majority want it scrapped, and it will be..

The Tory’s firmly believe that Scots are, “subsidy junkies”, and they intend to further reduce public spending in Scotland.

This will be achieved through the implementation of recommendations resultant of a needs-based assessment, which will form the basis of a new funding system for the nations and regions of the United Kingdom.

Legislation, “English Votes for English Laws”, another aspect of Tory governance, (introduced in 2015), will further advance the already strained relationship between England and Scotland since it will increasingly disenfranchise Scottish MP’s at Westminster.

But a senior Tory gave a solemn promise that:

“the Scottish Parliament is a fact and it will remain in place, and it will be able to legislate and implement policies for the newly reduced devolved responsibilities. A Tory government will not interfere with that. It will continue to govern Scotland with respect. Scots will see that and that will consolidate our support in the medium to longer term”.

The Tory and Labour Party’s will also continue to “sing” from the same constitutional hymn sheet acutely aware that the Nationalists are the main enemy of the “Union”.

 

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Reports of Horrific and Systematic Physical and Mental Abuse of a Female Civil Servant Deplored by Nicola Sturgeon Yet Judith McKinnon the Scottish Governments Head of People Advice Supported an Internal Investigation Report of No Wrong Doing By Civil Servants – Unbelievable But Why No Police Investigation?

 

 

Image result for Judith Mckinnon Mental health

 

 

 

Judith Mackinnon – Authoritative Figure Addressing Mental Health and Wellbeing

2005 – 2015: Judith was the Director for HR and National Programmes for the Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH), for 9 years.

She introduced “The Managing Mental Health at Work Strategy” for the 800 strong workforces, as well as promoting it and other support to external organizations and employers.

She also had responsibility for developing and leading the national programmes for Suicide Prevention; Anti-bullying and Sport and Physical Activity.

 

Image result for Judith Mckinnon Mental health

 

 

 

05 Apr 2016: Living In The Shadow Of Suicide

Scotland has the highest suicide rate in the UK, and every day two people take their own lives.

But behind these statistics, there are hidden stories. The Scottish Association for Mental Health — SAMH — raises awareness and supports those affected by suicide, which still carries a baffling stigma. They are launching a programme for suicide prevention with a national network of support.

SAMH director Judith McKinnon said: “When someone dies by suicide, family, friends and communities deal with the aftermath. It’s always a deeply painful experience. People who survive suicide attempts also struggle to rebuild their lives.

We want to involve communities across Scotland in providing this support and prevent suicide through training and awareness-raising for the general public.” (The Sun)

 

 

 

 

 

30 Dec 2010: Judith McKinnon, Director of Human Resources at SAMH, talks about mental health, employment, stigma and discrimination.

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShlCfgw8HBQ)

 

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30 Jan 2011: Judith Mackinnon: Member of The Scottish Government National Suicide and Self Harm Monitoring and Implementation Group.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Judith Mackinnon

Employed by Scottish Government from Jun 2017 as “Head of People Advice”, presumably with added responsibility for developing and leading national programmes for Suicide Prevention; Anti-bullying and Sport and Physical Activity.

 

 

 

Image result for Judith Mckinnon Mental health

 

 

 

 

15 Aug 2018: Government worker found taped to a chair and gagged loses bullying and harassment case

A fisheries officer who claimed she was bound-and-gagged to a chair by colleagues has had her allegations of bullying and harassment thrown out.

An employment tribunal, which sat in Aberdeen for two days in June, rejected DeeAnn Fitzpatrick’s claims she was mocked and targeted in a campaign of sexist harassment by colleagues.

The 49-year-old Canadian insisted there was a racist and misogynistic culture within Government agency Marine Scotland while she worked at their Scrabster office.

In an earlier hearing, DeeAnn alleged she was taped to a chair and gagged by colleagues in 2010. She produced a photograph which appeared to back up her claims.

Although that evidence was time-barred the tribunal went ahead and heard how DeeAnn was bombarded with fake Valentine’s day and birthday cards she believed came from male colleagues.

A message in one called her an “old troll” and another warned her about trying to “climb the ladder of success”.

DeeAnn told the tribunal the harassment was so bad she considered taking her own life and contacted an assisted suicide clinic.

She told the tribunal: “When I first started getting the cards, it made me feel awful. But as they continued, yes it’s affected my self-esteem. It’s actually made me become a recluse – I stay at home, I have gone more into myself. With everything going on, I contacted Dignitas in Switzerland. I had enough.”

DeeAnn, who has worked for Marine Scotland since 2006, was struggling to grasp the tribunal’s verdict that nothing was wrong.

She said: “It is difficult when you spend your entire career fighting racism, misogyny and bullies. Then to make matters worse when you report the incidents, you are the one that is being targeted by an ongoing campaign by senior management because you exposed what they have worked very hard to hide.”

The Scottish Government put up one witness, Judith MacKinnon, their head of people advice, who has over 25 years experience in human resources.

MacKinnon, who took up the job last year (2017) said those who dealt with DeeAnn’s complaints were too scared to appear because of the intense media interest.

But she backed the decisions taken by junior staff who found insufficient evidence to back up DeeAnn’s suspicions about the letters.

However, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon told MSPs she was “absolutely horrified” when shown the photo of DeeAnn allegedly taped to a chair and gagged.

She has ordered a top civil servant to conduct a full review of the circumstances and report to her personally.

DeeAnn’s sister-in-law Sherry said: “The Fitzpatrick family are hugely disappointed with the result of the tribunal.

However, this was not unexpected given the decision was made prior to the employment tribunal by the previous judge not to look at the restraint and other behaviors over a decade that our sister suffered while working in the Scrabster Fishery office.

The tribunal did, however, highlight that the human resources department should have been more proactive in dealing with the matter by launching an investigation, questioning staff and reminding staff that such matters might be regarded as being grounds for disciplinary action.

Not only the judges on the tribunal panel but us as DeeAnn’s family found it astonishing that the Scottish Government’s disciplinary policy allows employees the right to remain silent and they need not answer questions that may incriminate them.

What is far more important now is that the Scottish Government delivers a safe workplace for DeeAnn and other employees. Thank you to everyone for their continuing support and this is not the end of it.”

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/government-worker-found-taped-chair-13087825

 

Related image

 

 

Comment:

In noting Nicola Sturgeon was “absolutely horrified” when she was shown a photograph of DeeAnn taped to a chair and gagged and that she had ordered a top civil servant to conduct a full review and report back to her personally.

It would surely be inappropriate to appoint her Permanent Secretary or “Head of People Advice” who represented the government at the tribunal and supported decisions taken by local managers of LeeAnn.

To successfully defend the indefensible requires a great deal of skill and the system excelled in this regard.

But the final word goes to the relative who said, “thank you to everyone for their continuing support and this is not the end of it.”

The great Hank Williams is singing “Cold Cold Heart” in the background as I compile this. Appropriate in the circumstances.

 

 

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Judith Mackinnon

Personal Details:

Born Judith Kerr, Kilwinning 1967.

1990-1992: BA Personnel Management, Glasgow Polytechnic.

1993-2003: Married and divorced Anthony Chalmers.

2004-2019 (Current): Married ex Rangers soccer player – David (Skippy) Mackinnon.

2004-2019 (Current): Director: Mackinnon & Partners 50/50, with husband David Mackinnon – 2003 – Current – Business and Sports Development – family business – 2 people.

 

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Remunerated Employment:

2000-2001 (9 months): Director: Punch Taverns – public house chain – short term appointment.

 

2002-2003 (6 months): Director: Aortech Biomaterials – Glasgow based medical (cardio-vascular) device maker – introduced a revolutionary medical device to the healthcare environment at the start of 2000 – at its peak valued at £400m – failed to attract badly needed investment finance to remain operational – folded in 2004 – short term employment!

 

2005-2014 (9 years): Director – Human Resources & National Programmes – The Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) – introduced a “Managing Mental Health” at Work strategy for the workforce – promoted the Association to external organizations and employers – developed and led National Programmes for Suicide Prevention – anti-bullying – Sport and Physical Activity.

 

2015-2017: (2 years): Head of HR Governance for the Scottish Police Authority – oversees Police Scotland People and Development – provides assurance to the Authority that they are a responsible employer – builds a sustainable organization.

 

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January 2017: Scottish Police Authority Complaints Audit – criticized over handling of complaints

The body that oversees Scotland’s troubled national police force has repeatedly failed to deal properly with complaints.

The most common concern raised by senior officers was their perceived lack of transparency, clarity and lack of communication surrounding the SPA complaints investigation processes.

They also expressed grave concerns about the length of time taken by the SPA to deal with complaints and to undertake preliminary assessments in misconduct allegations.

The audit further identified that the level of communication by the SPA with senior officers was inconsistent. In some instances, subject officers had been invited to address the allegation/complaint but in others, an invitation had not been extended.

In a number of cases, the SPA did not notify the subject officers about the complaints and the first that the officers became aware of the complaints made about them was through media coverage with result that there is a significant lack of confidence in the SPA’s complaints processes.

Notes:

1. Misconduct Regulations state that the subject officer must receive immediate formal notification of the misconduct allegation once it has been determined that an investigation is required and an investigator has been appointed, so that the subject officer is provided with the opportunity to address it if it is their wish.

This was denied to Alex Salmond and the decision to appoint an “investigating office” should not have been taken by Evans on her own!!!!

2. The audit report concluded that there were a “number of deficiencies” in the SPA’s handling of complaints between April 2015 and March 2017. (https://pirc.scot/media/4447/spa-audit-report-2017.pdf)

4. Susan Deacon, (SPA chair), said the report identified a “number of important areas” requiring the authority’s attention. And it was essential that the SPA systems and practices were robust and worked effectively to maintain public confidence and trust.

5. Addressing the concerns of senior officers, procedures would be revised requiring more than one “deciding” officer to ensure key decisions were taken ensuring a better oversight of the complaints process.

 

 

 

Jul 2017: Mackinnon left her post in July 2017 to take up employment in the newly created post as Head of People Advice for The Scottish Government

The Alex Salmond debacle occurred within 6 months of her appointment. But another incident is worthy of comment:

Nov 2018: A Government review into an incident which saw a Scottish Government employee bound and gagged on an office chair has concluded that ‘disciplinary procedures’ were followed.

DeeAnn Fitzpatrick worked as a fisheries officer for Marine Scotland and claimed to have been subjected to years of bullying and sexist harassment from colleagues. In May 2018 a picture of her taped to a chair, (said to have been taken in 2010), was published by a number of media outlets.

The First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was horrified by the picture and ordered Permanent Secretary Leslie Evans to carry out a review into what happened.

Evans published a statement regarding her review into the circumstances surrounding the chair incident and was “satisfied” disciplinary procedures had been followed.

She stated: “Earlier this year I was asked by the First Minister to carry out a full review into the circumstances surrounding an image of a Marine Scotland employee taped to a chair. I am clear that this was completely unacceptable, whatever the circumstances.

A comprehensive internal review has now concluded. The Scottish Government has robust disciplinary procedures to address behaviour that falls below expected standards and I am satisfied that these have been followed thoroughly and objectively in relation to this incident.

A broad set of actions are underway in Marine Scotland to ensure a working environment which meets both the Civil Service Code and Scottish Government Standards of Behaviour.

I do not normally comment publicly on staffing matters but I am issuing this short statement to update the public record given the previous parliamentary and wider interest in this issue. My unwavering commitment to ensuring a positive workplace for all employees in the Scottish Government remains.”

Notes:

1. In August 2018, DeeAnn’s claims of bullying and harassment were rejected by an employment tribunal on the basis that the photograph of her taped to a chair was considered time-barred in terms of the proceedings.

2. DeeAnn was devastated when the employment tribunal rejected her claims.  She said she had been bombarded with fake Valentines day and birthday cards she believed came from male colleagues.

3. She also told the tribunal the harassment was so bad she had considered taking her own life and contacted an assisted suicide clinic.

4. Judith MacKinnon, Head of People Advice for The Scottish Government, who spoke for the government at the tribunal, supported decisions taken by junior staff (who failed to attend the hearing to give evidence claiming they had been scared off because of the intense media interest) who had found insufficient evidence to back up DeeAnn’s suspicions about the unsolicited cards.

5. DeeAnn’s sister-in-law said: “The Fitzpatrick family are hugely disappointed with the result of the tribunal. However this was not unexpected given the decision was made prior to the employment tribunal by the previous judge not to look at the restraint and other behaviours over a decade that our sister suffered while working in the Scrabster Fishery office.

The tribunal did however highlight that the human resources department should have been more proactive in dealing with the matter by launching an investigation, questioning staff and reminding staff that such matters might be regarded as being grounds for disciplinary action.

The judges on the tribunal panel and DeeAnn’s family find it astonishing that the Scottish Government’s disciplinary policy allows employees the right to remain silent and they need not answer questions that may incriminate them.

What is far more important now is that the Scottish Government delivers a safe work place for DeeAnn and other employees. Thank you to everyone for their continuing support and this is not the end of it.”

(https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/bullying-review-scots-civil-servant-13558314)

Comment:

A very sad outcome to a clear case of bullying,  in consideration of Mackinnon’s nine year employment with The Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) where she compiled and introduced a ” National (Scotland) Programme for Suicide Prevention and Anti-Bullying.”

 

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Other Commitments Not Directly related to Main Employment

(Currently): Chair of “The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development” (CIPD) – West of Scotland branch – a registered charity – established to promote the art and science of the management and development of people for public benefit – effectively a large networking body of persons with a bent for personnel management – 10,000 members in Scotland – organizes wide range of courses and events all directed to providing individuals with professional qualifications.

(https://www.cipd.co.uk/learn/branches/west-scotland). Remuneration?

 

The Battle Over Teacher Tenure – Censor This!

 

(Currently): Chair of “Venture Scotland” – Charitable organization – governed by a voluntary Board of six Trustees – meets as a whole a minimum of four times a year – contributes to sub groups and committees in support the overall governance of the charity. Voluntary?

 

Competencia No. 2 Proveer soporte y motivación | BLOG DEL ...

 

(Currently): Edinburgh Coaching Academy – leading provider of quality coaching – partnership of well-established coaches in personnel management with successful track records in delivering quality coaching to organizations and individuals. Seven partners – Alison Denton, Diane Peebles, Joanne Kerr, Judith Mackinnon, Colby Adams, Monica Merson, Jo Thomas – No men!

(https://edinburghcoachingacademy.com/the-team/) Remuneration?

 

HR Network

 

(Currently): Hr NETWORK – Human resource and people development – access to Scotland’s most influential human resource and business professionals across all sectors in Scotland.

(https://www.hrnetworkjobs.com/judith-mackinnon) – Remunerated?

 

 

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Leslie Evans & Judith Mackinnon – Is there a Conspiracy to Destroy the SNP Government by Innuendo? or Are They Just Incompetent?

 

 

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Leslie Evans

Born in Northern Ireland in 1958. Relocated to Sheffield. Attended High Storrs Comprehensive School 1970-76. Gained a degree in Music from Liverpool University. Married Derek McVay 1990. One son.

At School: (her own words, nearly)

Absorbed lots of knowledge. Music important – soft spot David Bowie, likes reggae and dub, Bach + Bartok. Rereads Jane Austen, theatre lover, views Shakespeare regularly. Learnt to like poetry – Sylvia Plath, Jackie Kay, John Donne.

Loved history – fascinated with Gender politics. In particular her feminism and yes she is a feminist. Dated back to learning about Elizabeth 1st’s speech at Tilbury,

“I know I have the body of a weak, feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king”.

Not just knowledge absorbed – learnt to ask not just what or why? But – really? Experience shaped her politics and values, and views about diversity, equality and inclusion.

Cultivated skills and capacities and the propensity to be curious, the ability to analyze – the desire to inform opinion and the appetite to question everything.

Gained 8 “O” levels in one year. Lost focus in the years following. More interested in partying than studying. Poor “A” level results.

Hard to take. Failure brought home the importance of hard work.

Despite poor results secured a place studying music at Liverpool University. Not talented or dedicated enough to be professional performer. Used musical skills to earn cash – in orchestra pit and teaching piano.

Used music degree as means to end, getting onto a post graduate course in London to get into arts administration.

Course included an employment secondment – worked really hard – made herself indispensable – gave up wild life and became totally dependable.

 

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Employment with District councils

Offered employment in arts with local authority in London. Then similar work in Sheffield.

Moved to Edinburgh 1985 – employed with Edinburgh District Council in senior management roles, (1985 and 1987 and from 1989 to 2000).

Ensuring effective delivery of arts, theatre, entertainment and recreation. Similar work with Stirling Council (1988).

On each transfer of employment moved up the management ladder – role and responsibilities became broader and more diverse.

Learnt to seize every opportunity offered – to show enthusiasm – to speak first – to answer yes – to think about whether and how to do it later. Learned to feign confidence – faking it until able to make it.

 

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Edinburgh District Council Scandal -Leslie Evans Nailed In Public

If someone in a position of authority is determined to smear you, it is very difficult to recover. Mud sticks.

Now, it is simply not the done thing for a Councillor to ever criticize an officer at a public meeting.

Politicians may only address their concerns to the Head of Department who is paid shed-loads to take the flack.

Those below departmental head know they can get away with not owning up to manipulations and misrepresentations, because that is what Department heads are for.

Back then, officers didn’t even have their name anywhere in the papers.

However, on this rare occasion, Councillor  Steve Cardownie stepped over that thin red line and fingered one such officer.

“Is it possible”, he thundered, that a very senior officer (there could only be one!) had tampered with the report, thereby undermining its validity and “independence”?

You could hear a pin drop. All eyes turned on Leslie Evans, who became bright, bright red with fury and froze, stock still. You could almost see the steam coming out of her ears. Her Video Strategy died before it had lived.

Footnote

It is said Leslie Evans caused Edinburgh Council to lose millions in the Usher Hall Lottery debacle of ’98, which led to the resignation of Roger Jones, the best and most popular Head of Department the Council ever had.

When Roger was forced to resign over the loss, Leslie had the temerity to give him a leaving card comparing him to Churchill – he was a hero, she said. If she truly felt that way, maybe she could have ‘fessed up and taken the rap, resigning in his place? Not our Leslie.

Full Article here: http://www.kidsnotsuits.com/fake-news-how-public-lies-begin/

This is a must read since it provides confirmation of views held by an increasing number of Scots that Leslie Evans is not an appropriate person to hold the position of Permanent Secretary to Scotland’s First minister.

 

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What A Con – The Civil Service and Their Janus Faced Illegal Politics

Leslie Evans reported to Francesca Osowska OBE in David Mundell’s office.

Osowska was formerly Principal Private Secretary (PPS) to the First Minister (Alex Salmond) between 2007/09.

Francesca Osowska, in a number of evasive statements to the Scottish Affairs Committee, glossed over the expensive and extensive work of a large group of (supposedly politically neutral) Civil Servants who actively supported the objectives of the “Better Together” campaign.

A gross misuse of public finances and Civil Servants presumably by David Cameron and Sir Jeremy Heywood.

She also confirmed that Mundell retained funding sufficient to employ up to 100 whole time equivalent (W.T.E.) posts and that salary and incidental costs arising from such employment are (top sliced) from Scotland’s block grant before the allocation of finance to the Scottish government.

The slush fund created is an ever increasing annual financial nest egg, skimmed off Scotland’s block financial grant and used, abused by the Mundell for purposes such as UK government anti-devolution leaflet production, printing and distribution.

And Hiring of Special Advisors (SpAds), usually sons, daughters, other relations, friends of ministers or other MP’s and employment of Civil Servants from other Government Departments in times of need.

Reflect also on the disgraceful actions of the UK Cabinet Office and Treasury Civil servants which contain the proud admission that they had been seconded to the Scottish Office (in Westminster) and were tasked, for an extended period of time to provide active support to the “Better Together” campaign.

Actions that brought about the defeat of Scots who wished only to be an independent nation once again. What a bunch of charlatans.

Full Article here: https://caltonjock.com/2017/07/24/mundell-and-the-tory-party-actively-aided-by-the-scottish-office-are-the-legal-government-of-scotland-holyrood-politicians-need-to-be-mindful-of-this-or-westminster-will-shut-it-down/

 

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Civil Service (CS):

Joined CS in 2000 soon after devolution – new Scottish Executive. Early 40s represented a major career change – big risk. But had gained experience in public service with local government – government service a cakewalk? – not so – miserable at work – didn’t seem to add value or make any difference. First year fish out of water. Held nerve – stayed resilient.

 

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Permanent Secretary Scottish Government

The retirement of the permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government, Sir Peter Housden (1) created a vacancy within the Civil Service.

The competition to succeed him was overseen by the First Civil Service Commissioner and open to candidates across the UK civil service, including in Whitehall.

Ms Sturgeon was presented with a shortlist of vetted candidates and selected Ms Evans.

Evans was appointed as Permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government on July 1, 2015.

In this role, she is the principal policy adviser to the First Minister and Secretary to the Scottish Cabinet.

She is also the Principal Accountable Officer for the Scottish Government with personal responsibility for the propriety and regularity of Government finance and for economic, efficient and effective use of all related resources.

Evans is the senior Civil Servant in Scotland and leads more than 5,000 civil servants working for the Scottish Government, supporting development, implementation and communication of government policies, in accordance with the Civil Service Code.

She joined the Scottish Government in September 2000, having spent 20 years working for local authorities in Scotland (City of Edinburgh Council and Stirling Council) and England (London Borough of Greenwich and Sheffield City Council).

Her previous post within the Scottish Government was Director General Learning and Justice. Other positions held include, Head of Local Government Constitution & Governance Division, Head of Public Service Reform Group, Head of Tourism, Culture and Sport, and Director of Culture, External Affairs and Tourism.

(1): Insiders briefed that Sir Jeremy Heywood remained livid over the behavior of Housden during the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum.

When he was accused of betraying the Westminster Civil Service brief by “going native”.

He was also criticized by Commons select committee for allowing the publication of swathes of Alex Salmond’s White Paper on independence that were politically “partisan” and failed to meet “factual standards”.

And a Westminster public administration committee said he should not have allowed taxpayers’ money to be used to publish sections that amounted to an SNP “agenda”.

The recruitment and appointment process of the new Permanent Secretary was tasked to the offices of the “First Civil Service Commissioner”, based in Whitehall so that the Westminster government would assured the appointment of their preferred candidate.

So as to be satisfied there would be no repeat of the conduct of Sir Peter Housden one of the new Permanent Secretary’s key tasks would be to rebuild trust with Holyrood’s opposition parties and Whitehall mandarins.

Leslie Evans is the Westminster Government’s “safe pair of hands” at Holyrood.

Over time she will add other Senior managers of the same ilk to her team, effectively emasculating the Scottish Government at Holyrood.

 

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Salmond’s Nark Has Fallen Foul Of The Whitehall Mandarins

What do Whitehall’s top people do when one of their own goes native? When he breaks the code of the mandarins, stops giving his minister unwelcome advice and fails to say “No, Minister”

What they do is exclude him from their inner counsels – as we can see in the strange case of Sir Peter Housden.

Housden, 61, is permanent secretary – top civil servant – to the Scottish government and his political boss is First Minister Alex Salmond.

Officially, he is no different to the other permanent secretaries and regularly attends their Wednesday morning meetings in Whitehall.

Unofficially, though, they regard him – there’s no nice way to put this – as “Salmond’s nark”.

He is not on the crucial committee that is bringing together Whitehall’s campaign against Scottish independence. “Good God, no,” said one insider in shocked tones. “Housden would just report everything back to Salmond.”

Full Article here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/9645906/When-it-comes-to-Sir-Peter-Housden-we-have-a-problem.html

 

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Sir Peter Housden Faces Fresh Accusations of Partisanship

The head of Scotland’s Civil Service faced fresh accusations of being politically partisan last night after he told thousands of his officials that he expected Alex Salmond to emerge victorious in the independence referendum.

Sir Peter Housden circulated a briefing, in which he informed civil servants that he expected “substantial negotiations” with UK ministers after the ballot — all but dismissing the prospect of an SNP defeat.

Sir Peter, the Scottish Executive’s permanent secretary and Alex Salmond’s most senior mandarin, predicted that the referendum process would have several stages and told his civil servants that they “don’t need to swallow this elephant whole” as it would “stretch now over a good number of years”.

He then considered what would happen after the referendum and predicted: “The other side of a referendum is likely to involve substantial negotiations.” He continued that it “will certainly require a major constitutional bill in the Westminster parliament to reflect a positive result”.

He did not spell out why he believed the SNP would win in the face of opinion polls that show only about a third of Scots would vote for separation.

Opposition leaders last night renewed their accusations that Sir Peter, who remains part of the British civil service, had “gone native”. The code governing officials prevents them expressing political views or advice.

Full Article here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scotland/9021782/Sir-Peter-Housden-faces-fresh-accusations-of-partisanship.html

 

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Independence White Paper Failed To Meet Civil Service Standards

Scotland’s most senior mandarin should have blocked the publication of swathes of Alex Salmond’s White Paper on independence that were politically “partisan” and failed to meet “factual standards”, according to a damning report.

The Commons Public Administration select committee said Sir Peter Housden, the Scottish Government’s permanent secretary, should not have allowed taxpayers’ money to be used to publish parts of the blueprint that amounted to an SNP “agenda”.

At “the very least”, the committee found that Sir Peter should have sought a “letter of direction” from Mr Salmond, a document requested by civil servants when they disagree with a minister’s decision so strongly that they refuse to be accountable for it.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scottish-independence/11488869/Independence-White-Paper-failed-to-meet-civil-service-standards.html

 

Judith Mackinnon

 

 

The Alex Salmond Debacle

In 2016 Nicola Sturgeon announced that “open government” would be a feature of the Holyrood parliament and new policies were to be put in place.

Leslie Evans had no personnel management qualifications and needed to strengthen her team.

In 2017 she recruited Judith Mackinnon, an experienced human resources manager, to a newly created, (very well remunerated) “Head of People Advice” position.

This is the same person that was previously Head of Human Resource Governance at Police Scotland.

Hardly a recommendation for employment in the Scottish Government given the many scandals in the force in the years she was in post.

Leslie Evans approached Nicola Sturgeon with proposals to draft new procedures in line with the Scottish Governments transparency in government drive.

Authority gained, Judith Mackinnon compiled the policy document, which was duly signed off by Nicola Sturgeon in December 2017.

One one month later, in January 2018, two complaints were made of sexual harassment against Alex Salmond under the new rules.

The incidents were alleged to have taken place at Bute House in 2013.

It was almost as though there had been “malice aforethought” and complainants had been waiting for the new rules to come into force.

There certainly seems to have been no attempt to make the accusation until the policy was active, protecting the accusers from exposure.

No matter the outcome of any subsequent investigation, the political damage to the SNP government would be considerable at a time when a new Scottish Independence Referendum was being mooted.

Alex Salmond was not made aware of the complaints despite the procedure requiring him to be informed, but Evans briefed Nicola Sturgeon and made a Police report.

The police investigation is on-going but there is justifiable concern that the appointment of an investigating police officer to lead the investigation might have been arranged!!!! determining the outcome.

Supported by £100K “crown funding”, Alex instructed legal action against the Scottish Civil Service for the breach of procedure which gave the impression it had been deliberately enacted to damage Alex and the SNP.

At court the Scottish Government accepted that there had been significant procedural errors in the handling of the complaints.

The Judge rebuked the Government and instructed that the matter should be closed.

Costs of the proceedings (possibly around £500K) were charged to the government.

 

 

 

The procedural errors:

A weird sequence of events. Complaints against Alex Salmond made by two female staff about alleged incidents they said occurred in 2013 (four years after the event) and only one month after the new procedures had been put in place.

The government follow up investigation revealed that the recently appointed personnel professional, Judith Mackinnon (who had no direct management authority over them), had solicited the complaints against Alex Salmond, from the two female officers.

She then spoke to them, at length on a number of occasions, in a manner “bordering on encouragement to proceed with formal complaints” against Alex Salmond.

The Government legal team further accepted there had been a “significant amount of inappropriate direct personal contact” between Mackinnon and the complainants.

Evans stated that the nature of the complaints had been brought to her attention by Mackinnon and she appointed Mackinnon to formally investigate the matter and take the appropriate action as required by the new procedure. But in doing so Evans compromised the procedures she and Mackinnon had only recently put in place. Plonkers comes to mind.

 

BBC Democracy Live - Lack of business case for Police ...

 

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The Stranraer to Belfast Ferry and the Near Miss With the Nuclear Submarine – You Do Know What’s Down There?? – The Toxic Time Bomb Gifted to Scots By The Westminster Government – Yet the residents of the South of Scotland Still Voted to Retain the Union in 2014

 

CENTCOM confirms depleted uranium use against Islamic ...

 

 

 

Nov 2011: Depleted Uranium – Kirkcubright – Cancer and Birth Defects

A summary of early government papers covering the period 1973 to 1977 was released by The National Archive. The exchanges showed there was knowledge about potential persistent contamination from Depleted Uranium dust. But what also emerged was the manoeuvring by the Westminster government and MOD to keep the firings secret from the Scots and the contempt with which the public was held.

Full Article here: http://theseacannotbedepleted.net/article/penetroy/

 

PressTV - US fired depleted uranium at civilian areas in ...

 

 

 

2013: MoD Dodge Ban and Dump Depleted Uranium Shells Into Scottish Waters

The MoD used a legal loophole to fire thousands of depleted uranium shells into Scottish waters.  Military bosses dodged an international ban by saying the 30 tons of radioactive waste had been “placed” not “dumped” off the beach in Kirkcudbrightshire. Outraged campaigners called on them to retrieve the toxic waste.

A spokesperson for the “Campaign Against Depleted Uranium”, said: “The Scottish public will struggle to understand how the MoD thought they could evade their legal and moral responsibility not to pollute the sea by calling this a ‘placement’. Whatever they name their firing programme, the fact remains they have purposefully released nuclear waste into the Solway Firth.”

The toxic rounds end up in the water when tanks at a military range at Dundrennan fire shells at canvas targets on the cliffs.

Minutes of secret MoD meetings released after a Freedom of Information request show an official raised concerns in 2004 that the practice could breach the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic.

He was told the MoD’s interpretation was that “the projectiles were placements not dumping”. The convention states dumping doesn’t include “placement of matter for a purpose other than the mere disposal thereof”.

Depleted uranium is linked to increases in cancers and birth defects in Serbia, Iraq and Syria. The MoD fired more than 6700 of the toxic shells into the Solway Firth over the last 30 years.

Full Article here: https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/mod-dodge-ban-dump-nuclear-1759193

 

 

 

 

2014: Scottish Independence and The UK’s Depleted Uranium Weapons

In the late 70s, the UK MoD was busy massaging ministerial approval for its plans for a controversial DU firing range in South West Scotland. The site, near Dundrennan in Dumfries and Galloway, had been selected after other areas that could have provided open range firing were deemed politically unacceptable.

The Scottish Office was nervous. In a strongly worded memorandum a civil servant, who had been busy trying to mitigate public opposition to a nuclear power station in the area noted that: “The allegation that Scotland has been made a “nuclear dustbin” is receiving a good deal of publicity in the press”. The plans went ahead regardless.

From Dundrennan to Dalgety Bay (where former Prime Minister and No campaigner Gordon Brown had been campaigning for a clean-up), the MoD’s actions over the years have only helped reinforce the nuclear dustbin claim.

The Dundrennan range is one of two main UK DU ranges. Both are situated on the shores of the Solway Firth, which separates Dumfries and Galloway from the English Lake District and Cumbria.

On the English side, Eskmeals was used for testing the penetration of DU rounds. Poor management of the fumes created by firing resulted in DU particles being found six kilometres away in the village of Milom.

Across the Solway, Dundrennan has been used for assessing the accuracy and range of the UK’s 120mm DU tank rounds.

Since 1982, more than 6000 rounds have been fired from the cliffs into the Solway, equating to 31 tonnes of DU.

Following developmental testing, the UK’s CHARM3 tank rounds require additional testing every five years; this is to guarantee that the explosive propellant functions as intended. This has ensured a regular cycle of firing and local and national opposition.

The UK Campaign Against Depleted Uranium CADU) has been a leading voice against the tests. Indeed the only thing to disrupt this cyclical process has been the Scottish independence referendum.

Last year, in what can only be described as a U-turn, the Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology, advised the MP for North Ayrshire and Arran, that the MoD would not fire DU as part of the current Life Extension Programme. This unprecedented decision flew in the face of the historical ammunition management cycle.

The Local Scottish National Party (SNP) MSP said: “There’s no question that this is a clear U-turn on the part of the UK government. Until now they have only ever been willing to say there are no current plans to test-fire DU munitions.

The concerted efforts of the Campaign Against Depleted Uranium have obtained the clearest statement to date that there are in fact no plans to test fire DU shells at all during the current, planned life extension programme of the munitions.” Adding: “Although this is a step forward, the campaign must continue until there is a clear guarantee that there will be no more test firing of DU shells in Scotland at any point in the future.”

The MoD has said nothing that would guarantee an end to test-firing, hiding behind the phrase ‘no plans to test fire’. However, the current Scottish government took steps to claw back some control over radioactive emissions at MoD sites in Scotland.

As defence matters are retained by Westminster under the current political settlement, the Scottish government and the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) had limited powers to oppose tests.

However, in March this year, and after a scandal concerning a radiation leak at the Vulcan test reactor at Dounreay, the SNP government moved to remove the Crown Exemption from MoD sites.

This gave more control to SEPA over emissions and licensing, where previously there had only been a weak memorandum of understanding over access and oversight.

In theory, this shift permitted the Scottish government a greater say over any plans for renewed testing at Dundrennan, particularly as the dumping of DU in the Solway may be a breach of the OSPAR Convention – an environmental law designed to protect the north Atlantic marine environment from toxic waste.

Future headaches

The SNP, which passed a conference motion supporting a ban on DU in 2011, is on record as being opposed to any further DU test firing in Scotland:

“The SNP is committed to ending the use of DU shells, and has supported local, national and international campaigns on the issue as well as raising the matter in the Westminster parliament. It seems possible that a future independent Scotland would oppose any further DU testing.

Scottish independence would also require that another question be resolved – that of liability for the environmental clean-up of sites such as Dundrennan and Dalgety Bay: a not insignificant sum of money and a process beset by the risk of setting dangerous precedents.

Full Article here: https://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2014/09/16/scottish-independence-and-the-uks-depleted-uranium-weapons/

 

 

 

 

2016: UK Sending Nuclear Waste To The USA – A Dangerous and Unwise Move

700kg of highly enriched (weapons grade) uranium (stored at the Dounreay Storage Facility in Scotland) will be sent to the US. The decision to move the radioactive waste out of the UK was presented by David Cameron as making it harder for nuclear materials to get into the hands of terrorists, but this is utter tosh.

The UK is well capable of managing homegrown highly enriched uranium itself. And the plans contradict the principle that countries are responsible for managing their own nuclear legacy……. The enriched uranium has the potential to harm human health for tens of thousands of years into the future and raises profound ethical issues of equity between generations.

Full Article here: https://nuclear-news.net/2016/04/06/uk-sending-nuclear-wastes-to-america-dangerous-and-unwise/

 

The cancer of war: United States admits to using ...

 

 

 

2016: Rocketing Cancer Toll in Serbia From The Use Of Depleted Uranium Weapons

The use of depleted uranium during NATO bombing of Serbia has caused long-term damage to Serbia and the Serbian people.

In Kosovska in 2011 there were 185 new cases and in the year following numbers of new cases increased to 225 and in 2013 the figure was 250.

Forecasts projected in 2002, that the use of depleted uranium during the aggression of Western military alliance against Serbia would cause an epidemic of malignant diseases, turned out to be accurate.

A medical Consultant Cardiologist employed in Serbia said: “those who used the depleted uranium had to know the consequences.

We should also remember Italy, which revealed that Italian soldiers, deployed to Kosovo, had been irradiated and that the increased number of hematological diseases contracted by them was a direct consequence of the use of depleted uranium ammunition.”

Full Article Here: https://nuclear-news.net/2016/04/20/cancer-toll-in-serbia-from-natos-use-of-depleted-uranium-weapons/

 

Serbia SOS: Depleted Uranium weapons are nuclear weapons!

 

 

 

2016: Radiation Effects of Depleted Uranium Continue To Bring Disease And Death In Iraq

Desert Storm 1991

Cancers in Fallujah (pop. 300,000) catapulted from 40 cases among 100,000 people in 1991 to at least 1,600 by 2005 making it the most contaminated city in Iraq

In 2010 a International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health article reported a 38-fold increase in leukemia, a 10-fold increase in breast cancer, and infant mortality rates eight times higher than in neighboring Kuwait.

The hair of Fallujah women with deformed babies was sampled and found to contain enriched uranium.

It is little known that for the past 25 years, the United States and the UK have routinely used radioactive weapons in battle, in the form of warheads and explosives made with depleted, undepleted, or slightly enriched uranium.

The military categorizes the weapons as “conventional non-nuclear”, but they are they are highly radioactive and chemically toxic.

In Iraq, where the United States and its NATO partners waged two recent wars, toxic waste covers the country and poisons the people and NATO military personnel alike.

A former Marine Corps officer and United Nations weapons inspector, said, “The irony is we invaded Iraq in 2003 to destroy its non-existent WMD (weapons of mass destruction). To do it, we fired these new weapons, causing radioactive casualties.”

The weapons were first used in 1991 during “Desert Storm”, when the Nato forces fired guided bombs and missiles containing depleted uranium (DU), blasting through tanks and bunkers with a density, speed, and heat, never before seen.

It is estimated that between 315 and 350 tons of DU were used in the 1991 Gulf War.

A spokesman for the World Health Organization (WHO) Center of Environment and Health, responding to a marked increase of babies born with grotesque birth defects, such as two heads, or missing eyes, hands, and legs, Or stomachs and brains, inside out, explained:

“When uranium weapons explode, their massive blasts produce gray or black clouds of uranium oxide dust particles. These float for miles, people breathe them, and the dust lodges in their lungs. From there, they seep into the lymph system and blood, flow throughout the body, and bind to the genes and chromosomes, causing them to mutate. First, they trigger birth defects. Within five or more years, cancer. Organs, often the kidneys, fail.

At one Basra hospital, leukemia cases in children up to age 14 doubled from 1992 to 1999. Birth defects also surged, from 37 in 1990 to 254 in 2001, according to a 2005 article in Environmental Health.

Leukemia—cancer of the blood—develops quickly. A British chemical physicist, explained: “Blood cells are the most easily damaged by radiation and duplicate rapidly. We’ve known this since Hiroshima.”

An independent weapons researcher in Britain, said the dust emitted alpha radiation 20 times more damaging than the gamma radiation from nuclear weapons. The military insisted the dust was harmless because it was not able to penetrate the skin. But they ignore the fact that is can be ingested.

Iraq Invasion 2003

Fast forward to 2003, when the United States and the UK once again invaded Iraq, launching bunker-busting guided bombs, cruise missiles, and TOW anti-tank missiles.

It also fired new thermobaric warheads, much stronger explosives with stunningly large blasts. Much of this weaponry contained some type of uranium, whether depleted, undepleted, or slightly enriched. The new Thermobaric weapons exploded at extremely high temperatures. The only material that can achieve this is uranium. Iraq has been left as a large hazardous waste site,

Fallujah is Iraq’s most contaminated city. The U.S. military attacked it twice in 2004, and in the November siege, troops fired a large number of thermobaric weapons, including a shoulder-launched missile called the SMAW-NE. (NE means “novel explosive.”) The soldiers thought it was wonderful, raving about how one round could destroy a building. Concrete bunkers were instantly incinerated and collapsed.

Burn Pits and Toxic clouds

In addition to the weapons’ lethal dust, Iraqis and NATO troops were exposed to poisonous smoke from huge open burn pits, some stretching 10 acres in size.

From 2003 to 2011, U.S. military bases burned waste in the pits around the clock—spewing toxic clouds for miles.

Two pits were located near to Fallujah.  A NATO soldier said: “We dumped everything into the pits. Plastic bottles, tyres, human waste, batteries, oil, solvents, unexploded weapons, and even medical waste. The Balad Air Base pit, burned around 90,000 plastic bottles every day. When plastic burns, it gives off dioxin—the key ingredient in Agent Orange….

Health Implications of Exposure to Depleted Uranium

Human epidemiological evidence identified an increased risk of birth defects in the offspring of persons exposed to DU.

A 2001 study of 15,000 U.S. Gulf War (1991) combat veterans and 15,000 control veterans found that the Gulf War veterans were 1.8 (fathers) to 2.8 (mothers) times as likely to have children with birth defects.

After examination of children’s medical records two years later, the birth defect rate increased by more than 20%.

In early 2004, the UK Pensions Appeal Tribunal Service attributed birth defect claims from a February 1991 Gulf War combat veteran to depleted uranium poisoning.

The risk of children of UK Gulf War veterans suffering genetic diseases such as congenital malformations, commonly called “birth defects”, found that the overall risk of any malformation was 50% higher in Gulf War veterans as compared to other veterans.

Full report here: https://nuclear-news.net/2016/04/11/radiation-effects-of-depleted-uranium-continue-to-bring-disease-and-death-in-iraq/

 

Use of Depleted Uranium proved in NATO Bombings ...

 

 

 

2016: Southern Iraq, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia Permanently Polluted With Depleted Uranium

Iraq was the fertile crescent of antiquity, the vast area that fed the entire Middle East and Mediterranean, and introduced grains to the world.

It was Mesopotamia, the cradle of civilization, which propelled humanity forward with its invention of writing, domestication of animals and settled life.

Now its groundwater and soil store the radioactivity of 630 tons of depleted uranium weapons. The waste that has been thrown onto civilian targets has permanent consequences.

It pollutes southern Iraq, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia with uranium oxide dust that spreads as far as 26 miles, blowing with sand, weathering into water.

Uranium 238, with a half life 4 ½ billion years, lies on the region in the scattered tons of wreckage. Contamination is permanent. Its radiological and chemical toxicity exposes the population to continuous alpha radiation that is breathed into lungs, absorbed through the skin, touched by the unwashed hands of kids who roam the scrap metal yards for parts to sell to help their families.

Full Article here: https://nuclear-news.net/2018/05/02/southern-iraq-kuwait-and-saudi-arabia-permanently-polluted-with-depleted-uranium/

 

Depleted Uranium by OrderOfTheNewWorld on DeviantArt

 

 

 

Our Lips Are Sealed – British Media Silent About Radiation Effects on The Iraqi People

Britain also used uranium weapons but denied there were any adverse lasting effects. So too did the WHO and the Iraq Ministry of Health, which concluded in 2012 that Iraq had fewer birth defects and cancers than developed countries.

But investigations into the conduct of the studies revealed that the Iraq Ministry of Health had surveyed households instead of hospital records. The findings were useless and a Lancet article called for a new study. Another report has not yet been completed.

But the American Public Health Association asked the US military to ban burn pits and to fund research on their health effects. It also asked the WHO to rethink its conclusion.

Researchers tell of attempts by authorities to quash investigations. In 1991, for example, the United States tried to keep the WHO from “surveying areas in southern Iraq where depleted uranium had been used and caused serious health and environmental dangers.”

A British oncologist who headed WHO’s cancer program in the 1990s, advised that his supervisor (who focused on non-communicable diseases) warned that they shouldn’t speak publicly about the cancers and birth defects, “because this would offend member states.”

Why Wont They Admit Liability?

NATO does not want the public to know about toxic dust, because of the liability. As for Iraq, it will conform with the wishes of the country that it is dependent on for financial and military support.

But despite the denials there is a growing international concern about uranium weapons, since they’re radioactive.

As predicted in 1991 by Lt. Col. Ziehm (US-Army) who warned in a memo that because DU weapons “may become politically unacceptable,” after-action reports must “keep this sensitive issue at mind.” In other words, don’t tell.

Media coverage of uranium weapons and the spiraling sickness has been scant. Newspapers refused to carry information and a BBC reporter said, “the public does not want to know about uranium weapons.”

In the meantime, NATO continues to build and sell them to anyone with the necessary finance. Lockheed Martin and Raytheon hold patents for enhanced bombs and cruise missile warheads that include uranium options.

Today, with the U.S., Britain, France and Saudi Arabia bombing Syria, and with the Saudis bombing Yemen, (with UK assistance) and the U.S. firing drones into Yemen, with some of the same weapons unleashed in Iraq it is likely that the people living there, along with huge numbers of refugees, will suffer the same trajic fate as the Serbs, Iraqis, Syrians, Lybians and NATO veterans.

Uranium oxide dust is like a bomb that keeps going off. “People’s genes are damaged for generations. Scientists found this in 22 generations of mice, after Chernobyl. The only way mutated genes disappear is when carriers don’t have children.”

Full Article Here: https://nuclear-news.net/2018/03/19/iraq-is-left-with-long-term-toxic-legacy-of-usas-use-of-depleted-uranium-weapons/

 

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The Westminster Government is Content that All Is Well With Procedures for Nuclear and Hazardous Waste Disposal and Incident Reporting At Coulport and Faslane But The Facts Indicate Their Content Is badly Misplaced

 

 

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Coulport

 

 

28 Nov 2018: Marked Increase in Safety Incidents Aboard UK Atomic Submarines

A recent report released by the MOD lists around 259 safety incidents on Trident submarines, and 246 on other nuclear-power but conventionally armed hunter-killer submarines, in the past 12 years (including near-misses, equipment failures, human error or procedural failings) and the number of incidents is growing.

23 incidents had high potential for releasing radioactive elements, posing a potentially a serious health and contamination risk which was fortunately averted.

It is of increasing concern that 30% of the 12 year total had been added in the last 2 years. So instead of getting safer, the situation has gotten more dangerous. The MOD has downplayed the risks but so long as these weapons are maintained the danger of a more serious and potentially catastrophic accident remains.

Arthur West, chair of the Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, highlighted that there are many who are against the deployment of nuclear weapons.

He said: “The majority of Scottish politicians are opposed to nuclear weapons and the public are increasingly aware that the risks involved in maintaining Britain’s nuclear arsenal heavily outweigh any perceived security advantages that Britain might gain.”

Full article: https://sputniknews.com/europe/201811191069938994-trident-nuclear-near-misses/

Comment: The health and safety record at Coulport and Faslane is appalling but there is sod all the Scottish government, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) or local authorities can do to bring about any improvement since devolved environmental laws exclude MOD sites such as Coulport and the neighbouring nuclear submarine base at Faslane.

A representative of the Scottish government described the MOD waste failings as “deeply worrying” and raised the question, “are these incidents a result of negligence or is the MOD willfully cutting corners placing public health and our environment at risk”? He also called for the MOD to be made accountable to the Scottish Government for the environmental impact of its operations in Scotland.

 

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30th Dec 2018: MoD’s Secret Plan To Dump 22 Nuclear Submarines In Scotland

The UK Government secretly planned to dump the radioactive hulks of 22 nuclear submarines in the sea off north west Scotland, documents released by the National Archives reveal.

A survey for the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in 1989 identified six sites for “seabed storage” of defunct naval submarines near the islands of Skye, Mull and Barra for up to 60 years – and probably longer.

Detailed and highly confidential MoD studies concluded the plan was “feasible” and would “obviate the international problems which we would face were we to dispose of these vessels in international waters.”

One MoD official said the aim was “to remove submarines from public view”. Another hoped that “everyone will forget about these submarines and that they will be allowed to quietly rot away indefinitely.”

Full Article: https://www.thenational.scot/news/17325734.revealed-mods-secret-plan-to-dump-22-nuclear-submarines-in-scotland/?ref=twtrec

Comment: The plan was shelved but not abandoned. They will be back with another plan which will include Scotland as the favoured location for dumping redundant Subs.

 

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Massive Blast at Dounreay- Huge Concrete Lid Blown Off Lethal Secret Radioactive Effluent Dump

Early in the morning of Tuesday 10 May 1977 there was a loud explosion at the Dounreay nuclear plant on the north coast of Scotland.

The UK Atomic Energy Authority, which runs the plant, had dumped sodium and potassium down a 65-metre shaft packed with radioactive waste and flooded with seawater.

The results were dramatic. The sodium and potassium reacted violently with the water. The explosion blew off the shaft’s huge concrete lid, threw its steel top plate 12 metres to one side, badly damaged the 5-tonne concrete blocks at the mouth of the shaft, and blasted scaffold poles up to 40 metres away. An eyewitness reported a plume of white smoke blowing out to sea. And, as government watchdogs much later revealed, the ground around the shaft was littered with radioactive particles hot enough to injure and kill. Over the past 18 years, almost 150 of such particles have been found on Dounreay’s beaches.

The accident is the most serious ever at Dounreay, and the particles it spewed out perhaps the most dangerous ever released by the British nuclear industry.

Full article: https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg14619830-600-lid-blown-off-dounreays-lethal-secret/

Comment: The “clean up” is still in progress 50 years after the incident. It is understood that a similar “dump” is in use at the Hunterston nuclear power station. Thats the place where 2 of the four reactors have been shut down because of significant cracks in their structure. The plant is scheduled to close in 2023 but, on the grounds of safety, it should be shut down now.  The good news is that the clean-up of the site will provide highly specialized jobs for a few workers for 50 years.  Jackie Baillie would be well chuffed if she was able to claim Hunterston to her constituency.

 

 

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Possible Perimeters  for a Sovereign Base at Coulport and Faslane?

 

 

MoD Waste Dumping on Peaton Hill halted Amid Investigations

Work transferring lorry loads of waste from Faslane to a hillside on the Rosneath Peninsula on the Gareloch has been dramatically halted.

It emerged this week that there are problems with the licence of the Rosneath Peninsula site being used by the Ministry of Defence.

For several months lorries have been moving waste material – said to be soil and stones from building work at HM Naval Base Clyde – to a site on Peaton Hill.

The MoD says that 15,500 cubic metres of waste – the equivalent of six Olympic-sized swimming pools – has already been moved.

The moorland site has seen significant excavation work, while the public are deterred from access by a sign warning of ‘bull beef’, although there is no sign of cattle.

Full article: https://thelochsidepress.com/2018/10/26/exclusive-mod-waste-on-peaton-hill-halted-amid-investigations/

Local Comment: When dumping first started it was said that it would comprise non-hazardous materials only. So there was nothing to be concerned about. But the MOD has form when it comes to dumping.

The exploding shaft at Dounreay, the radium dials in Fife, some really nasty stuff at Rosyth and closer to home the August 2017 incident at the Royal Naval Armaments Depot at Coulport, when at the time of a visit to the site Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) staff found untested waste from submarines, potentially containing radioactive material, had been mixed with other waste.

Meaning that radioactive waste could have been taken off site and disposed of as if it were non-radioactive waste.

The only reason the untested material was not taken off the base was because vigilant civilian waste contractors refused to pick up the incorrectly processed waste.

A Sepa letter to the MOD said that the watchdog considered this type of incident as “significant” adding that had the Royal Navy been a civilian operator, it would have considered issuing a formal written warning.

Campaign group Navy not Nuclear pointed to a long history of MOD “poor practice” when it comes to handling nuclear materials in Scotland, dating back more than a decade.

“The most damning thing about this is that nothing has changed. The MOD are still failing to follow their own operating procedures, and they’re still failing dismally when it comes to telling the regulator and protecting the environment.”

The group called for more to be done by both the MOD and Sepa to alert the public when environmental incidents occur.

“It shouldn’t be the case that this information should come to light by freedom of information, they should have a statutory public duty to disclose this information,” it said.

Goodness only knows what the MOD has dumped in uncontrolled landfill sites in Scotland as “Non Hazardous”.

 

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50 Years of Discharging Radioactive Effluent into the Gareloch

The Ministry of Defence has revealed proposals for a new ‘Nuclear Support Hub’, which it says will reduce the amount of radioactivity discharged into the Gareloch.

It adds that radioactive liquid effluent and solid waste from nuclear-powered submarines has been successfully treated and disposed of at Faslane since 1967.

The new building would treat and dispose of liquid waste, treat and condition solid waste and decontaminate tools and equipment used in maintaining nuclear-powered vessels.

Effluent would be processed to a level where it can be discharged into the Gareloch.

Full article: https://thelochsidepress.com/2014/11/09/new-plant-to-treat-radioactive-waste-planned-for-faslane/

Comment: Well! well! well! Confirmation solid waste and effluent has been routinely dumped at Faslane for over 50 years. Our children and grandchildren will never forgive the folly of UK governments who actively promoted the retention of nuclear submarines and weapons on the Gareloch.

 

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MOD Police at Faslane and Coulport to Police Rosneath Peninsula

MoD police based at Faslane and Coulport are to expand their operations into civilian areas outside the nuclear bases on the Clyde. The moves have prompted fears about “increased militarisation” of policing.

The MoD police are not accountable to the Scottish government but instead answer to the Ministry of Defence in London.

Police Scotland said there had been no discussions about the expanded civilian role of MoD officers.

MoD police officers have told the local community to expect “greater interaction” as they increase efforts to combat crime and terrorism across the Rosneath peninsula.

Full article: https://www.helensburghadvertiser.co.uk/news/15009201.armed-mod-police-begin-patrolling-civilian-scotland/?ref=ar

Comment: This type of activity is a pre-curser to the introduction and expansion of a controlled area within which members of the public are first prevented from free movement, then over time the public will be banned from the area completely.

Electrified fencing will be put in place prior to the entire area becoming a “Sovereign Base” in perpetuity. Mirroring an arrangement in place in Cyprus. Scottish independence may only be permitted with the foregoing rider.

 

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