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A vote for Labour promotes and enhances the power over Scots of the Glasgow Sarwar Dynasty

Scots Labour MPs slammed after bedroom tax no-show | The Scotsman

The Sarwar Dynasty in Central Glasgow

Wings Over Scotland | The Not-So-Great Dictator

Mohammad Sarwar’s peerage blocked by Inland Revenue

No stranger to controversy tax investigators expressed concern about his tax affairs and soon after his election in 1997 he was suspended from the Parliamentary Labour Party over allegations of bribing political opponents, and stood trial for fraud.

Ex-MP Mohammad Sarwar warns Pakistan faces 'bloody chaos' as he refuses to rule out running for president of nation - Daily Record

Mohammad Sarwar – officially the most expensive MP in Westminster. 

The multi-millionaire Labour backbencher, with an estimated personal fortune of £16 million, claimed almost £100,000 to cover mortgage interest that he paid from an account with a Swiss bank.

Sarwar, then chairman of the Scottish Affairs Select Committee, also claimed more than £3,000 for ground rent and service charges every year as well as around £1,500 for council tax and hundreds of pounds for home phone bills that included calls to Pakistan.

Sarwar also claimed a total of £174,882 in expenses 2008/2009  but turned up for only 55 per cent of votes, spoke in only nine debates and asked 55 parliamentary questions.

In the period 2004/2009 he claimed a total of £86,497 in second homes allowance (Additional Costs Allowance £600,000 flat in an exclusive building just over the river from the Houses of Parliament. and a total of £638,640 in other expenses, including office and staff costs.

uk-first-muslim-mp-now-in-pakistan-government-31.7.2013

Mohammad Sarwar announced he would not stand for election in 2010.

The ex Govan Labour MP gave up his British citizenship so that he could be appointed governor of Punjab, the largest state in Pakistan. The third most senior figure in Pakistan.

sarwarbrownlamont

Anas Sarwar – Son of Mohammad Elected.

Sarwar 27, was selected for and elected to the safe Labour Glasgow seat previously held by his father. His rise to the top echelons of the party is spectacular, but not unexpected. He was the head co-ordinator of the, “No” campaign in the 2014 Scottish Referendum. How’s that for nepotism!!!! No end to it, as yet.

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2011: Sarwar appointed Deputy leader of the Labour Party in Scotland.

In his address to Party loyalists he said  ” I will never define my politics by allegiance to the Scottish flag but rather to the values and principles of the Labour movement”.

Anas Sarwar back in Scottish Labour frontbench as constitution spokesman | The National

2014 Relinquishes MSP status transferring his allegiance to the Unionist Labour Party in England taking up the post of shadow spokesman at international development.

Clearly  a diehard, “Red Labour” unionist supporter intent on furthering his career in England, piggybacking on his Glasgow constituency.

Scottish Labour Party leader named

2013:  Sarwar attacked the Scottish Government for its alleged failure to mitigate the worst effects of the Bedroom Tax.

But , during a vote on the said tax being repealed in Westminster on 13 November 2013, Sarwar along with 45 other Labour MPs abstained, with the subsequent vote being lost by 252 to 226 – fewer than the number of Labour MPs who had failed to vote.

The bill was carried with the assistance of the labour party and the Bedroom Tax was imposed upon Scotland. And it was the Labour party that had called for the debate and vote.

Anti-Bedroom Tax Protesters visit Anas Sarwar MP

A few days later, adding insult,  Johann Lamont (Labour Party Leader) had the gall to submit a bill, to the Scottish Parliament requiring the Scottish Government to use their, limited fiscal powers to reduce the effects of the tax.

The SNP government, already alerted to the urgent need to provide help to many thousands of Scots had brought forward measures cancelling any negative impact that the tax might have on many unfortunate Scots on welfare in Scotland.

But this required a transfer of  finance away from other programmes and would have been unnecessary had Scottish Labour MP’s turned up at Westminster and voted for a cancellation of the Tax.

Feb 2015: Jackie Baillie, ever willing to claim credit for the good works of others had the audacity to make claims in the press that it had been her intervention that had saved the day for Scots forcing the SNP government to find recurring finance cancelling out the effects of the Bedroom Tax. The brazen bid for glory exposed her to the ridicule of the Scottish electorate who were well aware that £30m had to be diverted away from the Scottish health Service to fund the new tax burden. the Scottish electorate.

jackie baillie

In 2014, Sarwar came under criticism for choosing to send his son to Hutchesons’ Grammar School, the same exclusive independent school that he himself attended, rather than a state school highlighting the hypocrisy of Labour Party politicians who preached social justice and  public services while sending their own children to private schools.

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Scottish Labour deputy leader claims Holyrood not democratic.

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Sep 2013: Anas Sarwar lies about charity report. 

Sarwar disgracefully misrepresented the findings of an impartial, non-political research study which found that an independent Scotland would be far better placed to reduce inequality. Full report here: (https://wingsoverscotland.com/lying-liars-tell-more-lies)

Anas Sarwar, the ex-deputy leader of Scottish Labour, kicks off his political comeback trail with a meal and speech on his vision for the party and country

14 November 2015: No such thing as a free lunch?   Ousted MP Anas Sawar throws a banquet for scores of Scottish Labour faithful

Plotting his political comeback,  Sarwar, who lost his Glasgow Central Westminster seat in May, contacted parliamentarians, councillors and activists with an invite to hear his “view on the future of the Labour Party and Scotland”.

Guests were treated to a free dinner at the Riverside Palace, one of Scotland’s leading banqueting venues which can cater for up to 500 people and boasts of its high degree of elegance and grandeur. The move raised eyebrows amongst senior party figures, who believe it to be a pitch to re-position himself at Scottish Labour’s top table.

Wary of yet another failure Sarwar ruled out a head-to-head election battle with the SNP as his route back to Scottish politics preferring the safety first approach getting himself onto Glasgow’s regional list, which now must be based on a male and female taking the top two slots.

But in what some colleagues describe as a one-man show, questions are being asked as to why, after four years as deputy, Sarwar is now seeking a fresh platform for his views on the party.

A Scottish Labour parliamentarian said “The present and future of the Labour Party in Scotland isn’t about an individual’s view. It’s a collective approach, a team approach. Do the people on the street want to commit to supporting one person’s vision for the party?  People are apprehensive about the ambitions of Sarwar. ”

scottish labour | A Thousand Flowers | Page 7

Feb 2016: Sarwar tops the Labour Party list for Glasgow and is guaranteed a seat through the back door

Scottish Labour’s list for the Glasgow region was topped by former MP Anas Sarwar, followed by former leader Johann Lamont, current MSP James Kelly and former MSP Pauline McNeil.

Wings Over Scotland | Eyes on the prized
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An American view on nuclear weapons on the Clyde and Scottish independence

Nuclear Weapons on the Clyde An American View

Hi Everyone. I’ve been following the Scottish Independence referendum campaigning for some time. Most of the fallacious arguments I’ve seen have been pretty well knocked down, but there’s one in particular that keeps cropping up which is absolutely ridiculous and needs to be dealt with.

I live in Washington DC and I do policy work. Since no other foreign policy and government policy geeks have knocked down the NATO argument and the defense spending argument, I’ve decided to throw my hat into the ring. Just so you know where I’m coming from, I’m a supporter of Scottish Independence.

My main reasons to hoping you go for independence have a lot to do with the military issues I’m about to discuss. Scotland didn’t want to go to war in Bosnia or against Iraq and Afghanistan, but your soldiers ended up in the desert with ours anyway.

Scotland didn’t want nukes in the Clyde, but because of decisions made in London, ended up with them anyway, including the hosting and maintenance of visiting American nuclear subs.

These sorts of events create a lot of distrust, and a lot of friction that just doesn’t need to be there between Scots and Americans.

If we had a direct relationship with the Scottish people through Edinburgh instead of a second hand relationship through London, none of the foregoing would have occurred.

I guaran-damn-tee you that even though Americans are fighting hard to bring an end to the aggression there will soon be another warmongering President sitting in the White House. So if you elect to remain in the UK, I can’t guarantee you that something like Iraq or Afghanistan will never happen again. Sometimes my country just loses its damned mind.

But enough of that. The main thing I wanted to dispel was this myth that somehow if you don’t want Nuclear Weapons in the Clyde, NATO and the US will have a tantrum, and then will decide to punish Scotland somehow. Let me say that this is complete and utter bullshit.

First off, the only NATO program that obligates a country to store nukes is what’s called Nuclear Sharing, which is a fun way of saying America gets to park our nuclear weapons in your country. The current NATO policies that exist in the UK exist ONLY because the UK already has Nukes.

Most NATO Members do not participate in nuclear weapons sharing. The ones that do are Germany, Turkey, The Netherlands, Belgium, and Italy. The rest of the 28 nations don’t have any American nukes sitting in their territory or their ports.

Comment

Thanks for your informed contribution. With Westminster and the UK media, who are supposed to be ‘leaving the decision to those living in Scotland’, resorting to subterfuge and lies against the case for independence, it raises the spirits to read an honest, intelligent opinion.

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1999-Jackie Baillie, a Minister in the Scottish Executive publicly stated she was in favour of scrapping Trident. 2016-Baillie refused to support the Labour Party’s manifesto commitment opposing the renewal of Trident. In doing so she provided support to the GMP who represent defense and shipyard workers at Faslane and in which her husband Stephen is a high ranking officer. Loyalty apparently starts at home

I have great admiration for the 13,413 Dumbarton voters who on 5 May 2016 supported the SNP candidate, Gail Robertson.  So close to defeating Jackie Baillie who enjoyed a pyrrhic  victory by 106 votes.

But her victory was achieved at great cost to the party she purports to support. Her stance also further confirmed the deep divisions within the Labour Party in Scotland. The shaky truce between, “New Labour” supporters and the Corbyn team is now  well exposed and unfortunately the further demise of the Labour Party will continue for some time yet.

26 October 1999: Minister Jackie Baillie Backs Scrapping Trident

A Minister in the Scottish Executive has admitted publicly to being in favour of scrapping Trident, it was confirmed last night as the Opposition SNP moved to exploit Government concern at the controversial judgement of a Greenock sheriff who ruled that Trident was illegal.

In the wake of Sheriff Gimblett’s ruling that the nuclear deterrent based on the Clyde contravened the law as viewed by the International Court, the Opposition SNP last night asked if ministerial collective responsibility in Scotland applied to reserved as well as devolved areas.

Ms Jackie Baillie, Deputy Minister for Communities, replied to a CND questionnaire posted on the Internet before the Scottish Parliament elections saying she supported the scrapping of Trident. (Highbeam)

 
27 February 2007: The Pork-Barrel Component of Trident

I suspect there is only one job Jackie Baillie is anxious to protect at the moment. Mrs Baillie has put on a bravura performance pretending to be concerned with employment while actually defending Scotland’s place as a humble cog in the US military industrial machine and her own interest in the pork-barrel arrangements which flow there from.

Trident is about the British taxpayer subsidizing the US defense industry and providing, gratis, an ICBM submarine squadron to the US Navy.

The pork-barrel part is that impoverished / Labour – dominated (same thing, really) areas like Mrs Baillie’s constituency (20% of households living in poverty) get very few relatively well- paid, ferociously subsidized defense jobs. (Highbeam)

19 October 2007: Reasons to be cynical

Jackie Baillie tabled a question at Holyrood about the cost of the summit “Scotland Without Nuclear Weapons” convened by the Scottish Government. Her concerns, (related to the cost of the hire of a hall and some sandwiches) is in stark contrast to her support of political policies forcing the Scottish taxpayer to fork out billions of pounds being the nations share of the Trident renewal programme. This new charge being, added to the billions already paid for Trident system. Ms Baillie has become Scotland’s most vociferous supporter of nuclear weapons, no doubt in the hope of continuing to save her political skin as MSP for Faslane.  (Highbeam)  comment: But she said she was anti-Trident ?

Jackie is “New Labour” to the core

28 October 2012: Jackie Baillie Trident job loss claims challenged by official MoD figures

Claims by Labour MSP Jackie Baillie that the Trident nuclear weapons system sustains 11,000 Scottish jobs have been called into question following a Freedom of Information request by Scottish CND. Figures obtained from the Ministry of Defence by the nuclear disarmament group show that the total number of jobs directly linked to Trident is a mere 520. According to official figures only 159 are employed by the Ministry of Defence and 361 are employed by contractors.

Labour MSP Jackie Baillie has been a regular critic of the SNP’s policy over the siting of nuclear weapons on the Clyde. Ms Baillie has repeatedly claimed that having Trident creates 11,000 jobs, with thousands more set to be generated through plans to expand the naval base. Speaking on her official Labour party website, Ms Bailie said: “There are over 11,000 jobs dependent on the base.

The SNP would remove Trident, devastating our local economy and turning Helensburgh into a ghost town.” Ms Baillie also claimed that the renewal of the nuclear weapons system and the expansion of the base would create thousands more jobs and added: “The SNP also fail to acknowledge that almost 3,000 new jobs will be created with the impending expansion of the base. These too would be jeopardized by the SNP plans to scrap Trident.”

Dismissing his Labour opponent’s claim as nonsense, SNP MSP, Bill Kidd, said: “Trident is, in reality, a jobs-destroyer, and attempts to justify the presence of weapons of mass destruction on the Clyde in terms of jobs is the worst kind of nonsense, as Jackie Baillie knows only too well.” (http://newsnet.scot/2012/10/baillie-trident-jobs-claim-challenged-by-official-mod-figures/)

Scottish Referendum: Baillie and her Unionist Tory colleague Jackson Carlaw at Better Together fundraising event in Gartocharn, January 2014

 
19 November 2015: First Minister Holds Shameful Jackie Baillie to Account

You need to look no further than Labour’s Jackie Baillie to see why the people of Scotland have rejected this unionist party in their droves. Baillie shamelessly prodded Nicola Sturgeon by saying “She hopes the FM will eventually agree with Labour in restoring the cuts to tax credits”. When asked in a recent interview how Labour would pay for restoring the cuts, her answer was ridiculous gibberish that insulted the intelligence of every Scot.

The hypocrisy of Baillie is breathtaking…as the First Minister pointed out, Labour voted with the Tories against devolving tax credits and voted for spending £167 Billion on “independent” Trident nuclear missiles, that we can’t use without America’s permission, while children go hungry and homeless. Needless to say, the First Minister held her to account in no uncertain terms and exposes her shameful hypocrisy.

 
22 April 2016: Jackie Baillie Goes Rogue on Labour with support for Trident Nuclear Weapons Upgrade

The Labour politician currently MSP for the Dumbarton constituency is standing for re-election. She is also at the top of the party’s West of Scotland regional list. But questions are being raised about her suitability as a Party (list) candidate after she publicly vowed to defy the Party’s official policy on Trident.

In refusing to back her party’s manifesto commitment opposing the renewal of the nuclear weapons system she provided support to the GMB union who represent defense and shipyard workers at Faslane and also voted to retain Trident. Their representative also rebuked the conference stating that the debate was a nonsense and utter indulgence and the GMB was standing against “Alice in Wonderland politics.”

Baillie, whose Dumbarton constituency includes the naval base, said: “Faslane is the biggest single-site employer in Scotland. More than a quarter of West Dunbartonshire’s full-time workforce are employed there in good quality, well-paid jobs.” She then hit out at the SNP, who want to move the Trident submarines from the Clyde, describing their stance as “nimbyism on a national scale and “the worst kind of gesture politics”. Baillie’s husband Stephen, a high ranking officer with the GMB union did not contribute to the debate but was no doubt pleased with his wife’s contribution.

A report published last year by union umbrella group the STUC and the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament stated just 520 civilian jobs at HMNB Clyde are “directly reliant on Trident”, 132 of which are held by workers from Argyll and Bute and 178 by staff from West Dunbartonshire. The STUC, which calls for the establishment of a Defence Diversification Agency, says alternative roles can be found or created.

At the STUC congress in Dundee this week, Jane Carolan of Unison said her union has a “proud record of defending quality employment”, but argued replacing Trident would be “catastrophic”. She said Government figures show no jobs would be lost for 15 years, adding: “For the cost of Trident we could have 100,000 more firefighters, 120,000 nurses, 120,000 teachers. It is a gross misallocation of taxpayers money, our money, where there are so many more vital and constructive ways in which it could be spent.”

South of Scotland region Labour MSP Claudia Beamish told delegates there was a firm commitment to protect defense workers’ jobs regardless of Trident renewal.

Speaking for the locals a Councillor said:  “Night and day, the Ministry of Defense is transporting nuclear material through our streets. Jackie Baillie’s view has nothing to do with local jobs, it is to do with her protecting her own job. Her argument has always been the local economy is so reliant on it, but the Helensburgh economy has almost collapsed. It has empty shops. It is a fallacy.”

SNP Dumbarton candidate Gail Robertson, who is also standing on the regional list, said: “I don’t think Jackie Baillie can justify being a list candidate for Labour given what we are hearing about their manifesto. They are campaigning in opposite directions.”  (http://www.thenational.scot/politics/jackie-baillie-goes-rogue-on-labour-with-support-for-trident.16655)

 
2016 Scottish Elections – Jackie Baillie edges out SNP in closest race for Dumbarton seat

Labour: Jackie Baillie     13,522       40.2      -3.8%
SNP: Gail Robertson      13,413       39.9     +1.6%
Majority:                              109                      0.3%

Jackie Baillie said: “I’m so proud they’ve put their faith in me again and I will work my socks off for the next five years to repay that trust.”

Gail Robertson said: “I’m delighted at least that we managed to get it to the closest result we’ve ever seen in this constituency.”http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/local-news/jackie-baillie-edges-out-snp-7908968

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And they want your vote!! A comprehensive report cataloging the disgraceful abuse of the Glasgow electorate by the Scottish Labour Party  aided and abetted by the BBC and Scottish Press

BBC – Labour Party Bias – Not Us!!!

In denying the Scottish public their right to active promotion, through broadcasting of cultural diversity with other parts of the United Kingdom the UK government and its centrally controlled BBC is in breach of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions and the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights – Article 11 – Freedom of expression and information.

A well respected and truly impartial journalist was asked if the perception that BBC Scotland was anti-SNP was, in his view, justified said “Put it this way, it probably comes more naturally to them to attack the nationalists than to attack the union.”

A wee bit of history;

From 1946 to 1991 media affairs in Scotland were subject to the moderating influence of a BBC Scotland Controller who effectively reported to the, “Broadcasting Council for Scotland”, on which many distinguished Scot’s served over the years.

But following a reorganization control of BBC output in Scotland was transferred to the Board of Governors of the corporation in England then onto the BBC trust in London.

Macquarrie

What’s the problem?

The way in which BBC Scotland is run, the quality of care it shows for the many good people who work for it, the standard of what it does, the public service in Scotland ethos it supposedly represents are some of the more important questions facing the Scottish nation.

But it is doubtful they can be successfully addressed within the control systems that prevail at the present time.

The result is that the BBC is failing Scots when they need it most.

The primary blockages are firmly implanted the minds of those who retain control of the state media output:

1. That the BBC, is part of the glue that holds together the concept of a United Kingdom.

2. Weaken the corporation and the United Kingdom will fall apart. So weak is the quality of the paste.

3. The BBC dictates the daily agenda for the Queens subjects, how they talk to each other and what about.

4. It is of prime importance that Scots trust the BBC and feel they have a personal investment in it, otherwise it will be lost and the United Kingdom with it.

Boothman

Is the bias in BBC Scotland endemic or confined to a few employees?

The huge number of unresolved complaints and public demonstrations all voicing concern and anger about a blatant lack of impartiality by the news reporting/discussion teams in the course of the 2014 independence referendum and since gives support to the public perception that there is an on-going agenda within BBC Scotland ensuring support to Labour Party ideals, to the exclusion of other political parties in Scotland.

BBC Scotland needs to be taken away from London so that it can be truly independent and the over arching Scottish body, including members of the public, should be re-established.

MacQuarrie

Up Yours – BBC Scotland senior managers refuse to meet with MSP committee

Ken MacQuarrie, Head of BBC Scotland and his enforcer, Head of News and Current Affairs and Labour Party supporter bully boy Boothman refused to appear before the Scottish Education and Culture Committee at Holyrood stating that the BBC in Scotland was not accountable to the Scottish Government.

They were subsequently ordered to appear by the Chairman of the BBC Trust  and finally did so but stonewalled every question put to them.

Boothman (finally exposed as a bully) was later removed from his post as Head of News and Current Affairs after a protracted struggle with staff and trade unions and transferred his employment to the private sector.

Purcell

BBC Scotland News & Current Affairs Team

A Labour Party pedigree is a predominant requirement within the BBC Scotland senior management team and line managers and reporters in place are appointed through nepotism.

This needs to eradicated so that the BBC can be enabled to be truly impartial and accountable to the Scottish public.

The current “modus-operanti” cannot be allowed to remain in place.

There needs to be a cull of management and media correspondents that have abandoned the “Journalist’s Code” in favour of their politically minded colleagues. (https://www.nuj.org.uk/about/nuj-code/)

the Joker

Nepotism/Cronyism within BBC Scotland & protection of the Labour Party (1991-2017)

John Boothman headed News and Current Affairs and was the Editor of Elections and Political Output.

In 1979 he was the Chairperson of Strathclyde University Labour Club, Chairperson Scottish Organisation of Labour Students in 1980 and Chairperson of the National (UK) Organisation of Labour Students 1981.

According to former BBC broadcaster Derek Bateman, Boothman questioned the political output of radio broadcasts after receiving complaints from Paul Sinclair.

Sinclair, (SPAD to Johann Lamont) was said to enjoy a special relationship and regular contact with Boothman through both men’s links with the Labour party.

Writing on his blog,  Bateman claimed that Boothman was “famous for his unrivalled network of contacts in the Labour movement”.

Adding  “Sinclair had a name for trying to interfere in BBC news decisions to influence output.” and, according to the former BBC presenter, Sinclair and Boothman developed an unhealthy relationship with the Labour advisor calling the shots.

Bateman added: “But what I didn’t like about Sinclair – Boothman relationship was the informal and insidious way it developed, so instead of old pals, it became almost one of master and servant. Sinclair seemed to assume the right to call the BBC head of news to account”.

Bateman also claimed that Boothman had, on more than one occasion, questioned him about the political content of his radio programme after receiving complaints from Sinclair.

John Boothman is married to Susan Deacon: Former Chairman of Scottish Labour Students.

She served on the Scottish Labour Party’s, National Executive. MSP and was a Scottish Labour Party government minister.

Boothman, Margaret Curran and Johann Lamont when students were actively and closely involved in Labour Party politics at Glasgow and Strathclyde Universities.

Curran is a Labour Party Executive member and MP.

At university she was Secretary of Glasgow University Labour Club, Secretary of the Scottish Organisation of Labour Students, Chair of that organisation, and Vice-Chair of the Labour Club (the biggest of its kind in the UK) at the time.

Lamont is an MSP and former leader of the Labour Party in Scotland.

At university she was an active member Glasgow University Labour Club.

Sarah Boyack; Labour Party List MSP also attended Glasgow University and active in politics as a student, she was mentored by Margaret Curran (Chair of the National Organisation of Labour Students in 1985-86)

Catriona Renton: Reporter for the BBC Politics Show and BBC Presenter.

Renton is a former Glasgow Labour Councillor, who represented Kelvindale before losing her seat to the Lib/Dems in 2003.

She was “Glasgow’s Youth Tsar” and is a product of Balliol College, Oxford.

She was a Labour Party candidate in the 2003 Holyrood election and the 2004 European election.

She was recruited by BBC Scotland’s parliamentary unit in 2006, when Boothman, husband of Labour MSP and ex-Health Minister Susan Deacon, was a senior producer.

Her Facebook account lists as friends: Jackie Baille Labour MSP, Yousuf Hamid Labour Activist, Tom Harris Labour MP, Mike Dailly Labour Activist, David Martin Labour MEP, Frank McAvetty Labour MSP, John Robertson Labour MP John Park Labour MSP, Steven Purcell Labour Glasgow Leader, Dave Watson Vice-chair of the Scottish Labour Party.

At the centre of yet another bias storm in 2009 when attending the SNP conference in Inverness, she claimed on BBC Scotland’s Politics show that Alex Neil had confirmed the SNP’s desire to see David Cameron become the Prime Minister at the next general election. Views he had not expressed.

The BBC were forced to issue a personal apology to Alex Neil.

he Joker and Flashman

Tom Connor; BBC Head of Online News and Sport.

A friend and colleague of Boothman he was responsible for introducing and enforcing the continuation of censorship and blockage of comments to BBC Scotland political blogs.

No viewers comments or contrary views with the likes of Brian Taylor or Douglas Fraser accounts any-more.. Yet, in England, Wales and Northern Ireland BBC blogs actively encourage viewer feedback.

Conner and Boothman were censured a number of years ago for providing Labour candidates with media training using BBC Scotland facilities.

Coke King Purcell

The compliant Scottish Media & Glasgow – the labour Party Fiefdom

The Labour Party in Scotland’s abuse of Glasgow citizens was finally revealed to the public in March 2010 by newspapers published in England, the East of Scotland and Rebecca Gordon Nesbitt (http://www.variant.org.uk/37_38texts/1ed_2manifest.html) who headlined the very public downfall of Gordon Brown’s protege Steven Purcell.

The dearth of mainstream media reporting had led to online speculation of Purcell’s very cosy relationship with sectors of the Scottish media and its failure to fulfill its elusive role of holding power to account – namely, the press’s part in a regular Friday drinking date, dubbed ‘The Ritz Club’, which, Mandy Rhodes, the editor of Holyrood Magazine toyed,

“Did a misguided loyalty to a regular Friday afternoon drinking date, dubbed ‘The Ritz Club’, which included the editors of rival red tops, the Herald’s editor-in-chief and Purcell himself…influence reporting of the unravelling scandal?”

So there is no news in the truth / no truth in the news.

But still the complex network of Councillors, businessmen and public sector chiefs, all with connections to the Labour Party, in Glasgow’s iconic ‘redevelopment’ misadventure went for the time largely untroubled.

A prickled Sunday Herald driven to comment, responded to the suggestion of acquiescence towards the Labour Party;

“The absurd suggestions of a network of powerful figures working behind the scenes to influence the workings of the city and that this so-called network including leading figures from the media is now threatening to undermine public confidence in the integrity of the Scottish press”

and:

“The hints that some Scottish newspapers pull their punches on the controversy because editors have been too close to Purcell or, worse, they have been cowed into submission by Peter Watson and PR firm Media House.”

Jack and Bridget- the knowing look??

And what about Bridget McConnell?

In 2006, she spearheaded the controversial devolution of Glasgow City Council’s Cultural and Leisure Services to form the company/charity known as Culture and Sport Glasgow with a separate trading arm, Culture and Sport Glasgow (Trading) CIC. Since March 2007, she then held the post of Chief Executive of both companies.

In 2008, Culture & Sport Glasgow were awarded a long term contract to catalogue and manage the text archive and research department for Newsquest (Herald, Sunday Herald, Evening Times).

Another link established.

Those interested in the rudiments of democracy might wish to ask how a notionally privatised arm of Glasgow City Council could be allowed to become so tightly interconnected with Glasgow’s dominant media group.

More remarkable with the NUJ’s Vice-President-come-President also being the head of PR for spin-off Culture & Sport Glasgow at the time?

Additional reading:

I previously researched and published a comprehensive report cataloging the disgraceful abuse of the Glasgow electorate by the Scottish Labour Party  aided and abetted by the BBC and Scottish Press in the first decade of the new millenium.

Careful reading will reveal conspiracy, at all levels of those involved in the financial asset stripping of the poorest people in Western Europe

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In the Labour Party in Scotland Women count for nowt – Remember this ladies when you vote next week

Image result for richard leonard

The 2019 GE Labour Manifesto

Contains a commitment that a Labour party in government will:

End zero-hours contracts and “bogus” self-employment.

Require employers to work on tackling the gender pay gap or face fines.

But Richard Leonard has no authority to do anything. He must comply with the instructions of the Labour Party leadership in London. Any failing on his part will bring about his speedy end.

And, in regard to his commitment to end zero-hours contracts he is remiss in his recollections of recent past events.

Image result for richard leonard cartoons

In April 2015 Ed Milliband attacked the Con/Dem government over the issue of zero-hours contracts and promised the next Labour government would bring an immediate end to the practice.

But his strategy failed when it was revealed that 68 Labour MPs Employed Staff on Them? So much for the Labour Party sticking up for ordinary workers who are being exploited.

This is what he said:

“Less than a week ago, you may have heard the Prime Minister say that he couldn’t live on a zero-hours contract. Well, I couldn’t live on a zero-hours contract either. I’ve got a simple principle – if it is not good enough for us, it’s not good enough for you and it’s not good enough for Britain. “That’s the way I will run our country. One rule for all.”

But there was one small problem for Milliband. It was revealed by the pay and expenses watchdog IPSA that a large number of Labour MPs (68 in total, including Edinburgh South MP Ian Murray) employed workers on “zero-hours” contracts.

Related image

The equal pay policy commitment is most certainly yet another Labour party joke, to be pulled on Scottish workers by the very people they elect, the Unions, to protect their rights at work.

In Glasgow, women involved in the pre-2007 pay claims recall how the GMB union and the Labour Party council pressurized them into accepting low settlements by offering them cheques for a few thousand pounds just before Christmas so long as they signed quickly. Many signed.

But many more held out against the injustice and badly judged advice from their Unions and took their cases to another source of advice. Namely, Action 4 Equality – Scotland managed by Solicitor Stefan Cross.

In doing so they had to wait longer but received far greater settlement sums. Not only did Cross take on Glasgow District Council, but he also sued the unions for failing to properly represent their female members, forcing them to up their game.

In so doing, he made himself hugely unpopular and many still regard him as an ambulance-chaser who got rich off the back of driving English councils to the brink of disaster.

To the women, however, he is a hero, which explains why Cross retained 80 per cent of the claimants. “I will have to give him 10 per cent of the payout, but he deserves it,” one woman tells me. “He stuck with us when the unions couldn’t be bothered.”

It reveals the duplicity of the Unions who unconditionally supported the policies of their Labour Party Councillor colleagues assisting their efforts to deny women workers a fair wage.

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12 Jun 2017: North Lanarkshire Labour/Tory Alliance Council forced to pay pension costs of hundreds of women it underpaid

And, not to be outdone the North Lanarkshire Labour/Tory Council set about screwing their female staff out of their pensions.

Yet again the Unions and the labour party were complicit in heinous acts against women employees.

As events unfolded it became evident that the Labour/Tory Alliance run Council would incur a £1million bill after systematically ducking its pension responsibilities to hundreds of female staff it previously tried to squeeze out of equal pay.

The Council was ordered to cough up after a Scottish Public Pensions Agency (SPPA) investigation found it tried to “obstruct” a fair deal for almost 700 women who were systematically underpaid for years by the council, earning lower wages than male colleagues doing jobs of equivalent worth.

Last year, after initially forcing the authority to give them back-pay through a tribunal, they reached a second negotiated settlement worth a further £7.1m, after being represented by equal pay experts Action 4 Equality Scotland, (note the absence of Union support).

However, their final salary pension deals remained below those of male counterparts, as their contributions were lower while they were underpaid.

According to recent local government pension regulations, all back-pay must be treated as “pensionable”, meaning bigger pensions and bigger lump sums for those affected. The change required the Council to top up their employer contributions to pension funds.

However in February, North Lanarkshire once again tried to sidestep its duties to the Strathclyde Pension Fund, which covers the female staff, by claiming the women’s second round of back-pay was actually a form of negotiated “compensation” and therefore not pensionable.

The women’s lawyers appealed to the SPPA in March, pointing out the potential differences would be profound if the back-pay was not made pensionable.

Some of the North Lanarkshire women would be denied a pension rise of £1500 a year and lump sums of more than £4000, a lifetime difference of around £50,000.

The SPPA has now ruled the council “misconstrued” the law, and criticised its arguments as “confused and an obstruction to finding an equitable solution to the disagreement”.

It said the council must pay the income tax and national insurance on the second wave of back-pay as well as employer contributions, an estimated total of £1m.

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In Glasgow votes for Labour carry the risk of control of communities being passed to the Orange Order and a return to the bad old ways in-Govan-Ibrox -Fairfield-Kingston-Maryhill-Rutherglen-Cowcaddens-Possil-Cowlairs-Baillieston-Bridgeton-Drumchapel

Political Fun and Games

The Unionist press and media made claims that a resurgence in the fortunes of the Tory Party in the last Council elections was part-attributed to a transfer of the protestant Orange Order away from the Labour Party to the Tory Party which had courted the Order by changing its title back to the “Conservative and Unionist Party.”

The Torys benefited again in the next General Election when the Labour Party voter base in Scotland collapsed due to in-fighting over the political direction the Party would commit to.

The polarisation of Scottish politics appeared to be established. The Conservative and Unionist Party claimed the right to defend the Union and the influence and role of Labour and the Liberal Democratic Party had been reduced to that of political spoilers.

But the Tory Party is well capable of “shooting itself in the foot” and Boris Johnson’s government duly did so with its mishandling of Northern Ireland post-Brexit where the Republican voter base now marginally exceeds the Unionists increasing the likelihood of an early referendum and the reunification of Ireland.

The article that follows provides a detailed history of the Orange Order in Scotland and its capacity for disruption.

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The Orange Order in Scotland

The Orange Order first surfaced in the north of Ireland in 1795. Its constitution commits members to the defence of Protestantism and the British Crown. It provides a focus for Protestant ethnic groups in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Although its promoted activities are focused on social and religious matters the political dimension has always been considered to be of prime importance and the Order has provided a number of political activists and leaders at many levels of Scottish political society.

The Order is not exclusively an Irish import to Scotland since the politics of native Scots in the West of Scotland is historically sectarian in nature.

This ensured the political growth of the Irish-Protestant working class in Scotland would be influenced by native Scots who were more inclined to embrace socialist ideology as opposed to confrontation.

The loss of many thousands of young Scots soldiers and the depression after WW1 changed the mindset of Irish immigrants and their descendants who became more reliant on the Order to ensure their place in Scottish society. This brought with it a significant increase in membership and a much enhanced Order presence in the politics of Scotland in the 1920-1939 period.

At the end of WW2 and up to the late 1950’s the Order was influential in ensuring the political direction of the Protestant working-class vote in the Central belt of Scotland.

The industrial downturn and slum clearance programmes in Scotland brought about the establishment of overspill areas, such as Easterhouse and Castlemilk. Expansion of town and village living; Coatbridge, Airdrie, Motherwell, Hamilton and the new town of Cumbernauld.

Similar programmes were completed in Edinburgh and the East of Scotland forming overspill areas such as Muirhouse, Sighthill and the new towns of Glenrothes and Livingston.

The impact of the changes on the Order was significant. Membership fell sharply as the population of the Central belt of Scotland became more dispersed and the influence of the Order was lessened markedly.

But although much reduced in numbers the Order in Scotland is still influential in Protestant communities.

Membership has remained consistent in the West of Scotland (in or around Glasgow) and North Lanarkshire

West Lothian, in the East of Scotland, is an Order stronghold and there are a significant number of lodges in Renfrewshire, Wigtownshire and Ayrshire.

Conversely, there are few lodges in Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and the Highlands and Borders regions.

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Male members of the Order

The highest ever male concentration of the Order in Scotland was recorded at 10% in Govan and Rutherglen, but overall Scottish male membership density rarely exceeded two per cent. In 2017 the figure is reduced to less than 1%. For comparison male membership of the Order in Belfast routinely peaks at around 20%

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Membership Patterns

In Glasgow, at the Ward level, pockets of the Order are to be found in; Govan (Kingston), Ibrox, Kinning Park, Fairfield, Kingston, Rutherglen, Cowcaddens, Drumchapel, Maryhill, Possil, Cowlairs, Baillieston and Bridgeton.

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Causes of Membership Change

Order membership improved following the introduction of licensed social clubs coupled with an ever-increasing appeal of soccer and paramilitary activity in Northern Ireland. Spikes and fluctuations in membership are also attributed to a number of factors:

Threats to Protestantism: marked decrease in Scottish Protestant church membership and increasing secularisation resulting in declining church attendance and Pastoral influence.

Threats to the Union: e.g. a visit to Scotland by the Pope

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The Northern Ireland Troubles of 1969-90

In the 1960s and throughout the troubles the policies of the Order in Scotland became ever more militant answering the perceived threat to the Union by Nationalists.

“Scottish” Lodges and their bands travelled to Northern Ireland in increasing numbers during the “Marching” season. Over time the distinct “Scottishness” of marching lodge members was replaced with “Ulsterness”. Scottish saltires were replaced with the Red hand of Ulster and the Union Jack. Surveys identified that Order members claimed their identity to be “British” and it was the protection of the “Union” that drove them to go to Ulster each year.

The Grand Lodge of Scotland which supported financial contributions to Ulster was also heavily involved politically, throughout the period with the many different factions in Ulster and UK governments. The Order benefited from the troubles achieving the highest ever level of membership in many years.

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The Sea Change

The 1982 visit of the Pope proved to be the turning point for the Order and its steady decline in membership and influence. Hard-line “Ulsterised” rank and file members demanded militant action preventing the visit but were not supported by senior Order officers or the Grand Lodge.

A number of small groups ignored instructions and went ahead with protests causing an amount of disruption. The failure of the Grand Lodge to establish control encouraged lodges to ignore instructions forbidding them from introducing Sunday opening, the sale of alcohol and singing and dancing. An added impact was the increasing militancy and unruly behaviour of marching bands and their supporters. Bands had evolved from the Scottish pipe bands of the 1960s, first to the accordion, then to “blood and guts” flute bands whose average membership age was under 30y. Despite suspensions, the bands continue to perform at many “Orange Walks” in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

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Influence

The Order in Scotland can be credited with the establishment of a working-class Unionist Tory base through the lodge system and its influence over political events in Glasgow up to the start of WW2 was substantial resulting in a number of Tory Orange Order MPs being elected to Westminster. The Order had little purchase however in the rest of Scotland since there were no other significant Orange Order clusters.

The Scottish Unionists’ successful political recruitment and retention strategies up to the early 1960s were centred on cultivating the votes of the Order membership without compromising its aims and ideals. But the Tory party alienated many members of the Order when it turned away from Unionism retaining only “Conservative” in its title. Many Order members drifted away to the Labour party.

Thatcher’s agreement to support the 1985 Anglo-Irish Agreement proved to be the catalyst that severed links between the Order and the Tory Party in Scotland. Disillusioned Order members, supported by the Grand Lodge formed a political block to the Tory Party using their votes tactically making claim to a reduction in the number of Tory MP’s in Scotland.

Political observers have inclined to the view that the withdrawal of their support had less impact on the fortunes of the Tory party in Scotland blaming other Thatcher actions against Scotland.

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Freemasonry in Scotland

The Scottish Protestant tradition of Masonry stretches back to the middle ages and the organisation of Freemasons in Scotland is broadly similar to that of the Orange Order. Indeed there is a school of thought that supports the view that the Order first adopted the rules of Scottish Freemasonry and amended them to suit their own needs. It is of no surprise that the Orange Order has done so well among Scottish Protestants.

Scotland’s total of around 170,000 Masons is the largest Masonic membership rate worldwide making it a Protestant institution guaranteed its place in Scottish society.

The stability of Scottish Freemasonry is attributed to its “articles of association” which require members to be strictly apolitical and non-religious, unlike the Orange order, (with 70% of its Scottish membership clustered in Central Scotland.)

It is also important to draw attention to class differences between the two groups of Protestants in Scotland. In Glasgow, Masonic Lodge halls are primarily located in the more affluent West of the City and in the satellite villages and small towns on the city’s outskirts. Major concentrations of Masonic lodges are also to be found in the Borders, Highlands and the Northeast. Other lodges are located, in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Perth. Conversely, Orange Order Lodge Halls are located in working-class areas of Glasgow and similar locations in other towns in the West of Scotland.

Summary

In the last 30 years, Scottish Protestant church membership and attendance have fallen significantly and the Grand Lodge is increasingly impotent in the control of younger, often more militant members who challenge its right to dictate policy in regards to the support of Ulster Orange men.

The continued presence of the Order is directly attributed to the past influx of Irish-Protestant immigrants and their descendants and its power is only retained in areas of historic Irish-Protestant immigration such as Larkhall, Airdrie and parts of West Lothian. Overall however the strength of the Order, (even in the West of Scotland) is relatively weak.

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The seeds of anarchy planted by a small group of arrogant teens would be added to by devious means and bear fruit in the growth of Aberdeen and Scotland’s SNP LGBTQ+ powerhouse.

Teenagers are running the city of Aberdeen

May 2007: A review of Scottish local government in 2005-6 identified 79% of 1,200 Councillors to be predominantly male, with an average age of 55. Only 1% were under the age of 30.

The review prompted the Labour party executive to lower the age limit for council candidates from 21 to 18 and in order to facilitate change it also offered controversial goodbye golden handshakes to veteran Councillors.

Pay-offs of up to £20,000 formed part of a £7m package to persuade older and long-serving Councillors – many of them Labour stalwarts in the central belt of Scotland – to retire. More than 400 took up the offer and stepped down.

For the first time, the country’s 32 local authorities were elected using the single transferable vote system of proportional representation and the results in Aberdeen were significant with the election of a number of SNP teenage LBGTQ+ activists to Councillor status and their appointment to high profile roles in the City Council which the party formed together with the Lib/Dems.

SNP Councillor, Kirsty West, filled the post of the authority’s new education convener and her brother John, had a special reason to be in celebratory mood since only a year after leaving school he was elected to the city council becoming Scotland’s youngest Councillor in the process and was then promoted two weeks later to the post of Depute Provost, salaried at £25,000 + expenses, all at the tender age of 18.

His appointment to the senior post required him to chair full council meetings in the absence of the lord provost, and to attend civic functions and many political observers expressed surprise and concerns since he was also a student at college studying, at the expense of the taxpayer, for his first year law exams and there was doubt about his ability to discharge both commitments effectively despite his civic duties being much reduced by agreement, to facilitate his studies.

Sep 2007: Aberdeen’s teenage Depute Provost quit his university law course after failing three exams. He said: “I hope to return to further education to study something else at a later date. I basically decided that the course was not for me before the exams and rather than make the same mistake twice I am going to take a year out and think about where I want to go with things.”

Sep 2008: Aberdeen’s young Depute Provost is to have his civic duties scaled back yet again, as he is returning to university. West, is embarking on a history and politics degree. He previously studied law, but dropped out. His council obligations are being cut back to allow him more time for his studies at Aberdeen university. Opposition Councillors have raised concerns he may be unable meet his obligations while studying. Studies subsequently abandoned.

May 2012: His tenure in office was marked by sustained criticism from the press throughout his time as a Councillor and he gave up his budding political career moving south to study at civil engineering at Edinburgh University.

He later gave up his studies and went backpacking around the world. His whereabouts in 2022 are not known to myself but I expect someone will know where he is and any career choices made by him between 2012 and 2022.

Comment: John West wisely stepped away from politics in 2012. His five years as a Councillor and Depute Provost may have been financially fruitful for him but journalists might consider their recurring criticism of his performance to be entirely justified and the Aberdeen electorate short changed. But the seeds of anarchy planted by the small group of arrogant teens would be added to by devious means and bear fruit in the growth of Aberdeen and Scotland’s SNP LGBTQ+ powerhouse.

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All independence minded Scottish MP’s at Westminster should resign their seats en-bloc and stand for office in the ensuing by-elections seeking a “Claim of Right” mandate to declare an immediate end to the 1707 Treaty of Union.

Claim of Right

“As a nation, the Scots have an undoubted right to national self-determination; thus far they have exercised that right by joining and remaining in the Union. Should they determine on independence no English party or politician would stand in their way, however much we might regret their departure.” (Margaret Thatcher)

In 1954, A Royal Commission described the UK as a “multi-national” or “multi-nation” state and acknowledged that it had been one ever since its foundation in 1707. The recognition of the multinational character of the British State and Scotland’s status as a nation within it further acknowledged that “Scotland was a nation that had voluntarily entered into union with England as a partner and not as a dependency”.

Scotland’s right to self-determination:

“That this House endorses the principles of the Claim of Right for Scotland, agreed by the Scottish Constitutional Convention in 1989 and by the Scottish Parliament in 2012, and therefore acknowledges the sovereign right of the Scottish people to determine the form of government best suited to their needs.” (Westminster Parliament, Wednesday 4 July 2018)

Self-determination has also been codified in the fundamental and universal documents of international systems, such as the Charter of the United Nations in 1945 and the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of 1966 and becoming an independent country would be an act of self-determination by the people of Scotland.

The precedence of the doctrine of the mandate

Before 2011, the Unionist attitude to independence referendums was that its politicians should not support referendums on policies that they did not back. But their opposition changed after the 2011 General Election when they agreed to the holding of an independence referendum because of the concurrence of Westminster politicians who believed that in winning an overall majority of seats, the SNP had won the right to see that particular promise implemented.

What was significant was that the agreement to hold the independence referendum established precedence through the preference for the belief in the doctrine of the mandate, rather than by the upholding of a constitutional rule. Although not tested at the time the support of the doctrine of the mandate extended to a straightforward declaration of independence if that was the preference of the electorate.

Referendum and Westminster

The Scotland Act does not explicitly reserve the organisation of referendums to the Westminster Parliament, though it does reserve to Westminster “the Union of the Kingdoms of Scotland and England”. It can therefore be argued that a referendum on ending that Union is also a matter reserved to Westminster. The potential difficulty was resolved through a political deal, the Edinburgh Agreement of October 2012. The opening lines of the Edinburgh Agreement, stated: “The United Kingdom Government and the Scottish Government have agreed to work together to ensure that a referendum on Scottish independence can take place.”

Referendum and Scotland

A Scottish independence referendum was reluctantly supported by the British Government even though it could have attempted to block it by legal means. The reason for this is enshrined in Scotland’s right to self-determination that has long been acknowledged, as has its status as a nation within the UK State. a simple “50% plus one” majority would have been enough to launch independence negotiations.

In Scotland’s case, the main obstacle on the road to secession was the composition of the electorate which comprised many thousands of voters not truly Scottish an anomaly that produced a majority that remained unconvinced of the merits of independence. This hurdle would be overcome in any future referendum with the stipulation that residence in Scotland is not an automatic qualification. A Scot is an individual born and wholly resident in Scotland at the date of an election.

Abuse of principled politics offered by the SNP leadership

Nicola Sturgeon stood at the doors of Westminster in 2015 and stated: “The SNP will be the principled opposition in this place to the Conservative government. The SNP has worked long and hard in this election to make Scotland’s voice heard. To have people in Scotland in such overwhelming numbers put their trust in us is fantastic, but also is a big responsibility. We are determined to make Scotland’s voice heard here in Westminster, but we are also determined to be that voice for progressive politics that we promised to be during the election. To stand up to policies from a Conservative government that will damage Scotland and to make common cause with others of like mind from across the UK.” No mention of independence from a Party leader in preference for committing the Party to progressive politics in opposition to a regressive regime. What a nutter!!!

The Tory response was immediate and ruthless- there would be no progressive politicking from Mundell.

Scotland’s only Tory MP and Secretary of State for Scotland, Mundell, proposed 80 technical amendments to the Scotland Bill , stating: “some are amendments in terms of the usual changing of commas and apostrophes and these sort of things. However, the bulk of them relate to technical procedures and a rearranging of previous proposals. In three cases the amendments will reserve additional powers to Westminster. Under clause 43, the Scottish Parliament will not be able to raise levies on postal operators, electricity or gas for the purpose of funding consumer advocacy.”

Scotland Bill: the 3rd reading at Westminster Mundell allocated 6 hours of debate to decide on 253 amendments.

The Scotland Bill was rushed through without adequate discussion before SNP MPs parked their bums on the green benches of the House of Commons ensuring that the legislation would be on the statute books well before the next Holyrood elections. The bill as it stands is a stitch-up and places a fiscal time bomb under Holyrood.

Andrew Dunlop – A Scottish born committed Unionist

Closely associated with the Conservative Party for most of his adult life. He was a special adviser to the Defense Secretary (1986 – 88) and a member of Margaret Thatcher’s Policy Unit (1988 – 1990). The demise of Thatcher brought his budding career to a halt and he moved away from active politics to found and developed his own strategic communications consultancy business. Over 20 years later he sold the business, for a very tidy sum of money, to the Brussels-based Interel Group (lobbyists).

Promoted to the Lords, he is a member of the UK Constitution Committee and an Expert Member of the UK Civilian Stabilization Group.

Retaining contact with Scottish affairs he is currently a Board member of the Scottish Council for Development and Industry. A supporter of Boris Johnson he is formulating and implementing Tory government policies for Scotland. In this respect, he revealed his thinking in a speech he made in the course of a debate on the “possible effects of Brexit on the stability of the Union of the parts of the United Kingdom”. He said:

“Attention should be paid to the machinery of intergovernmental relations, which needs to be strengthened. We also need to look at the cross-UK synergies, weakened since devolution, which need to be reinvigorated. We need to pursue a decentralized, pan-UK strategy for re-balancing the economy, driven by city regions across the country. This means moving away from seeing everything through a four-nation prism. Many of the problems confronting Glasgow, for example, are similar to those of Manchester or Birmingham. They provide embryonic structures which can be built upon. There are two years until the next Holyrood elections. Strengthening our union must be an urgent priority whatever our post-Brexit future.”

The Westminster Government’s underhand decision to emasculate the government of Scotland through the establishment of a UK Government in Scotland presents new challenges for Scots whose ambitions for their country extend to a unilateral withdrawal from the 1707 Treaty of Union and full independence and Scottish supporters of the devolved Scottish Government and its limited powers, to be further reduced from January 2021 when Brexit is complete.

Scottish independence in 2022/2023

The “claim of Right” establishes the way forward for the Scotland’s political representatives and the electorate who are desperate to escape the excesses and brutality of of Westminster rule.

All independence minded Scottish MP’s at Westminster should resign their seats en-bloc and stand for office in the ensuing by-elections seeking a mandate to declare an end to the 1707 Treaty of Union.

Related articles

I published a number of articles from 2014 expressing my concerns about the lack of political leadership in the matters of Scotland’s relationships with Westminster. See below

Scotland is a nation and its people have the right enshrined in law to decide its future not Unionist politicians at Westminster


https://caltonjock.com/2018/02/26/the-1707-treaty-of-union-full-awareness-of-the-facts-of-the-betrayal-of-our-ancestors-by-the-landed-gentry-should-persuade-scots-that-we-should-reclaim-our-right-to-govern-ourselves-the-union-is-tar/


https://caltonjock.com/2016/11/10/the-uk-supreme-court-an-illegal-pseudo-body-tasked-with-ensuring-the-protection-of-westminster-sod-the-scots-and-their-claim-of-right/


https://caltonjock.com/2021/10/16/the-destruction-of-the-independence-of-scots-law-confirmed-by-the-latest-pronouncements-from-the-westminster-supreme-court/


https://caltonjock.com/2021/05/17/another-act-of-attrition-the-jackboot-of-the-uk-supreme-court-brings-scotland-to-heel/

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Frau Sturgeon and her regime intend to impose the GRA on Scots who should have heeded the warning of the Supreme Court Judges- “The first thing that a totalitarian regime tries to do is to get at the children, to distance them from the influences of their families, and indoctrinate them in their rulers’ view of the world”

2014: Protecting the Children

The Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 was an Act of the Scottish Parliament passed on 19 February 2014. The legislation was part of the SNP Government’s “Getting it right for every child” policy implementation. The scope of the act made provision for the rights of children and young people. The provision of services and support for or in relation to children and young people. Children’s hearings, detention in secure accommodation and consultation on certain proposals in relation to schools.

The provisions of the act gained the support of parents, professionals involved in childcare provision, childrens organisations and charitable institutions and implementation of the new measures was scheduled to be implemented from 2015.

But the public became increasingly concerned about the wisdom of a “Named Person” when press coverage revealed the propensity for the abuse of children.

Press Report:

Dayna Dickson-Boath was appointed one of the first Named Persons in Scotland, but is now banned from working with children for the rest of her life. She had held a senior position at a secondary school in Moray, but yesterday consented to being struck off by the General Teaching Council for Scotland on the charge that, between 8 August 2014 and 10 September 2014, she “did send, by means of a public electronic communications network, messages to another person that were grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character, in that you did converse regarding the sexual abuse of children”. Dickson-Boath was placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register and ordered to undergo treatment when she was convicted in Elgin Sheriff Court.

A trickle of protests reached tsunami strength at the start of 2015 as concerns were raised about aspects of the legislation which were draconian, poorly drafted and “Big Brother State”.

The SNP government ignored requests for a dialogue and forced the new measures through. But the public would not be denied and a number of Scots parents and Christian organisations took the SNP government to court in an effort to get parts of the act repealed. They failed in their efforts and all appeared to be lost. But they gathered strength from increasing support of Scots who had been alerted to what the SNP government was seeking to impose on the nation. They appealed to the UK Supreme Court.

John Swinney 'delusional' over lobbying row in named person scheme |  Scotland | The Times

2016: The Supreme Court Judgement – The Named Person Scheme

In their summary ruling against the introduction of the scheme the Supreme Court judges noted that the appropriateness of the novel new legislation hinged on the government’s assertion of a need to ensure the “wellbeing” of the child.

But “wellbeing” was not defined and reliance on SHANARRI indicators (standing for Safe, Healthy, Achieving, Nurtured, Active, Respected, Responsible and Included) were also not defined and were in some cases notably vague.

A unanimous ruling of Supreme Court judges also stated: “The first thing that a totalitarian regime tries to do is to get at the children, to distance them from the subversive, varied influences of their families, and indoctrinate them in their rulers’ view of the world.

They were also agreed that the idea that parents must comply with any advice given “could well amount to an interference with” Article 8 of the ECHR (the right to respect for private and family life). The Court also held that the legislation’s data sharing provisions, which they held were central to the role of the named person, “are not within the legislative competence of the Scottish Parliament”.

And yet, In his 2016 speech to the Scottish Parliament following receipt of the judgement Swinney insisted that the judgment itself did not require current policy to change. His message to local authorities and health boards was to continue to develop and deliver the named person service. Encouraging the disregard of the Supreme Court ruling set a dangerous precedence since in continuing the development of the named person provision, its information gathering and sharing processes the Deputy First Minister encouraged unlawful practice by state bodies.

Dr Jenny Cunningham, a recently retired community paediatrician from Glasgow said that the named person scheme was “illegitimate and illiberal” and argued that an open democracy depended on the principle that “parents ought to be autonomous in relation to their own families”. he continued saying: “The underlying assumption by the SNP government is that adults are unable to identify vulnerable children – so the state has to intervene! This belittles parents. She concluded: “We should strongly resist and argue against this idea that parents are incapable of assessing children’s wellbeing needs and accessing services – parenting is about establishing good relationships with children and establishing parental authority.”

Maggie Mellon, an independent social work consultant said: “It’s important that we understand the rationale and the ideas underpinning the legislation. The SNP government has made it clear it thinks the Supreme Court judgment is purely technical and they’re going to plough on regardless. But there is no duty under the Act to consult or collaborate with parents. It’s just not there. We’ve been treated to flights of complete fancy about the voluntary nature of the scheme. We were told it was in response to parents’ demands – then we were told it was to save children from their parents. A Named Person can’t provide a hot meal, a pair of shoes, a warm home but they can spend time doing SHANARRI somersaults with 300 wellbeing outcome signifiers and 200 risk indicators! It wont work.”

m miller (@Imweemark) | Twitter

Aug 2018: Plan B to by-pass MSP’s and implement the Named Person Scheme by the Backdoor

The SNP Scottish Government is considering controversial proposals to implement the detested named person scheme “by the back door” even if MSPs refuse to support changes to the law. Discussion of a so-called “Plan B” is revealed in documents which were only made public, after a Freedom of Information (FoI) request was submitted. The papers were produced following a meeting of unnamed top level government officials and advisors in February 2018. An annex under the headline “CONTINGENCY” stated: “Contingency plan? What if the legislation is not passed?” And adds: “Plan B for if Bill fails to make sure parts 4&5 can be implemented without information sharing.”

The scheme has been riddled with problems and last month a further delay was revealed. Swinney set up a panel to produce a Code of Practice by September 2018, after Holyrood’s Education and Skills Committee said it would not pass the legislation without one. But Professor Ian Welsh, chair of the panel, wrote to Mr Swinney to inform him that the panel would not be able to meet this deadline.

Lesley Scott of the TYMES Trust, said: “These worrying documents show the focus is clearly on implementing Named Person Scheme by the back door, regardless of whether the new Bill gets through Parliament. Clearly, we are now dealing with a Government which is ignoring the UK Supreme Court, has no regard for the elected representatives of the Scottish people and is determined to shun public opinion. They are riding roughshod over the democratic system in pursuit of a flawed, failed and discredited project.”

Lesley asked to be provided with details from three key meetings of the Statutory Guidance Framework Group tasked to review the named person scheme in October and December 2017 and in February 2018. Subsequently only one set of minutes was released and was useless since the names of all persons in attendance had been redacted. An appeal was submitted to the Information Commissioner’s Office seeking a review of this decision to withold the documentation.

Maggie Mellon, former chair of the Scottish Child Law Centre, said: “The names of all present including the chair are all redacted. So much for open government. There is no way of identifying which agencies are providing wrong advice or whether the persons present represent their colleagues and agencies properly. Is it now so toxic to be associated with the named person scheme that people are not willing to have their names made known”? Adding: “These are presumably many of the same people who advised the government so badly first time round, that breaching confidentiality is ok even when any concerns fall well below the proper threshold. What is so important about this flawed scheme that it has to be pushed through” ?

Girfec-like scheme abandoned in New Zealand after being branded useless |  UK | News | Express.co.uk

Sep 2019: Named Person Scheme Scrapped?

Deputy First Minister John Swinney announced in the Scottish Parliament: “We will now not underpin in law the mandatory named person scheme for every child. We will withdraw the Children and Young People (Information Sharing) (Scotland) Bill and repeal the relevant legislation. Instead, existing voluntary schemes that provide a point of contact for support will continue, under current legal powers, when councils and health boards wish to provide them and parents wish to use them.” Swinney’s announcement led to widespread media coverage, with some containing misleading content. So here we set the record straight.

Girfec-like scheme abandoned in New Zealand after being branded useless |  UK | News | Express.co.uk

Summary

The July 2016 UK Supreme Court judgment stated: “the sharing of personal data between relevant public authorities is central to the role of the named person scheme” and concluded that the information-sharing provisions:

Were incompatible with the rights of children, young persons and parents under article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights:

May in practice result in a disproportionate interference with the article 8 rights of many children, young persons and their parents, through the sharing of private information:

Were “not within the legislative competence of the Scottish Parliament”, deeming the legislation “defective” and blocking it from coming into force:

Bizarrely, Swinney responded to the ruling at the time saying: “I welcome the publication of today’s judgment and the fact that the attempt to scrap the named person service has failed”. But three years down the line he was forced to admit that the mandatory Named Scheme, with legal powers to grab and share private information at the low level of wellbeing, cannot work without breaching the human rights of children and families. It had to be scrapped.

So, where do we go from here? Swinney, in his statement yesterday said: “Instead, existing voluntary schemes that provide a point of contact for support will continue, under current legal powers, where councils and health boards wish to provide them and parents wish to use them.” A voluntary single point of contact. So if you still see a Named Person service being offered, it will now be on a strictly voluntary basis. It will be up to councils and health boards to decide if they wish to offer a voluntary named person or some kind of voluntary single point of contact for parents, and it will be up to parents to decide if they want to use the service.

The ‘voluntary single point of contact’ will not be able to share information on “wellbeing” concerns at will. Instead it will have to adhere to current data sharing frameworks. There will no longer be a statutory Named Person service imposed on every child in Scotland. Parents can feel confident that when they are given advice or offered a service by a voluntary “Named Person” or “voluntary single point of contact”, they do not have to accept it. As the 2016 Supreme Court judgment stated: “Care should therefore be taken to emphasise the voluntary nature of the advice, information, support and help which is offered”.

https://www.supremecourt.uk/cases/uksc-2015-0216.html
https://no2np.org/ Comprehensive coverage here

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The ugly side of Labour politicians

Be careful who you vote for

Voters have short memories when deciding who gets their vote and the criminal incompetence of the Tory government has enhanced the profile of the similarly afflicted Labour Party who are leading the polls in England. In Scotland the political gossip is encouraging talk of the resurgence of Labour albeit of insufficient strength to cause concern to the SNP. But there are voting security concerns centred around the presence, activity and influence on voters of the UK secret services based in Scotland that should be addressed, but isn’t.

Senior Labour Party official Douglas Alexander is a person of note. I posted (see below) two examples of excesses in office instigated by him on behalf of the Labour party at the time he was Secretary of state for Scotland.

Douglas Alexander and his involvement in US politics

Yang Enterprises is a CIA front corporation with connections to Jeb Bush and British MI-6 agent Douglas Alexander who is in turn linked to Choicepoint software and the British Galileo satellite. It is alleged they were involved in the blatant theft, hacking and electoral coup d’état of the year 2000 presidential election directed against then Vice President Albert Gore Jr. and the American People.