Categories
2015 General Election

Children In Poverty – Symptomatic Of A Dog Eat Dog Society Or A Sad Reflection of Westminster Governance

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The widely supported “Child Poverty Act” of 2010 committed the Westminster political elite to completely eliminate poverty amongst children by 2020.

But slipping quietly through the general election campaign is the future lifestyle, for many millions of children destined to live in poverty due to the rapid growth of low paid work and continued high unemployment levels which, due to welfare cut backs will not be supplemented by the State. Not much to look forward to

“Save the Children”, has taken up the cause and having consulted interested parties throughout the UK produced a report, critical of politicians and their false promises “A Fair Start for Every Child” gives warning that child poverty levels are at 2014 the “highest ever recorded in the UK” due to the poor getting poorer, the imposition of harsh welfare cuts and the increasing cost of every day essentials needed in support of children (decent clothing, footwear, balanced diets, medicines, heating etc.) http://www.savethechildren.org.uk/sites/default/files/images/A_Fair_Start_for_Every_Child.pdf

 

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The usual government blandishments have been issued in response to the report stating that every effort, forming part of a long term strategy, is being made with the purpose of identifying then resolving the root causes of the problems. Clarification of the foregoing is uncertain but unless poor wages, poor welfare and inflation form part of the response the future for children in poor families is bleak.

Now the split: As is the norm the Labour Party is on the hunt, making mischief, blaming the Tory government for all the ills that society is suffering, but legislation bringing forward measures dealng with the problems of the increasing numbers of the “underclass and their feral children” was placed on the statute in 2004 by Tony Blair, Gordon Brown annd New Labour. The Tory and Lib/Dems simply picked up the cudgel created for them by the Labour government and weilded it with great gusto.

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Beyond the general election the Tory Party is committed to the implementation of an austerity programme ensuring elimination of a huge financial deficit, £1.6 trillion, part created by the Labour government £0.8 trillion, and added to by the Tory Party. The Labour Party are singing from the same song sheet as the Tories promising a similar programme of massive cuts “but with a human face” whatever that means.

So child poverty is set to increase further unless the “austerity measures” are binned in favour of an expansion of the economy, favoured by informed financial experts and the SNP. The exchequer has gathered billions to it’s coffers over the last 5 years and this should be released to families improving their lifestyles and the welfare of their children. The benefits are obvious. A fair minded society means healthy children and a contented electorate who will work hard increasing tax revenues affording a faster reduction of the deficit. Makes sense.

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The SNP is the only party committed to a removal of child poverty and it is imperative news of this commitment is spread widely throughout Scotland over the next few weeks. The Tory’s, Labour and the Lib/Dem’s, with their brutal policies are not fit to govern without the moderating influence a large SNP group at Westminster will ensure.

Categories
2015 General Election

Glasgow – A Society Where Time Has Stood Still – If You Seek Labour’s Monument – Look At This Hellhole

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Glasgow – A Society Where Time Has Stood Still
“When one thinks of the East of Glasgow – and the lucky ones are those who have to go no further than just think … If you seek Labour’s monument, look at this hellhole” (Heffer)

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Poverty And The Media

In 2006, a research programme investigating public attitudes to poverty and inequality was launched by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. The role of the media, and in particular the news media, occupied a key element of the research agenda.

The role of the media in helping to shape public attitudes to poverty and welfare, an issue which had concerned researchers for some time was an important part of this research. One of the key findings was that UK poverty was generally a marginal issue for the news media,  but,  when poverty was reported, people experiencing poverty were either represented in a stigmatised way or as passive victims.

In the period 2004-2010 the media played an important role assisting government,  helping to form and shape public attitudes to poverty,  attitudes which hardened at the time the Labour Party were in power were further strengthened by the Tory/Lib/Dem government who view poverty as a consequence of behavioural inadequacies,  providing opportunity to introduce harsh policies reducing levels of support for redistribution of wealth,  satisfying media demands for tough measures against “benefit cheats.”

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The Right Wing Press has It’s Say

Glasgow’s unenviable location at the top of UK morbidity and mortality league tables is a recurring theme in many of the stories featured across the right wing print media.

The Sunday Times: Who would you expect to live longer? an East Glaswegian or a man from Colombia, Albania or North Korea? The answer is that the Colombians, Albanians and North Koreans would drink a toast at the Glaswegian’s wake. The choice of Albania and North Korea is particularly poignant given the tendency also in some of the press reporting to construct Glasgow East with its high proportion of socially rented housing as a Stalinist housing monolith and state-dependent locale. Such comparisons are meant to shock – but they do not stop with these three countries.

The Times: Used the headline-grabbing quote, “Glasgow’s Guantanamo” stating: Glasgow East is a part of the world that defies exaggeration. Desultory buses head out from the city centre towards some of the worst areas of concentrated poverty in the Western world: Shettleston, Barlanark, Garthamlock, Easterhouse, Parkhead … communities that figure with monotonous regularity both on the charge sheet at Glasgow Sheriff Court and at the top of the lists of the most socially deprived wards in Britain. They might as well be called Guantanamo. For many thousands of welfare prisoners on sink estates, marooned by bad housing, violence, addiction, unemployment, ill health and shattered relationships, there is little chance of escape.

Daily Telegraph: A sense of despair pervades thousands of residents, half of whom live in social housing … The Sandwick Square shopping centre in Easterhouse epitomises a lot of what has gone wrong with Labour’s great post-war social experiment – the area’s sprawling mass of council estates. A sad collection of shops – Pound Saver, a pawnbroker, a bookmaker, Farm Foods.

The Independent: A deprived and neglected part of Glasgow, where a man who lives to be 55 can consider himself lucky … Glasgow East is a tough area, where 30 per cent of the working age population is on unemployment or incapacity benefit, nearly 40 per cent of children grow up in homes where there is no adult in paid employment, and three fifths of the people have no access to a car. The social services have many thousands of local children and adults on their books.

Two themes emerge that are worthy of note: the representation not only of Glasgow East as a universal indicator of social problems, but also of arguments that council housing had increasingly become a “problem” and that government policies were not working, or were insufficiently targeted at dealing with the ‘real’ problems as signified by Glasgow East and similar locales elsewhere in Scotland.

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The Labour Party – The Feral Society and How To Deal With It

Families living in the East of Glasgow, experiencing poverty and associated disadvantages were reclassified, “other” by the Labour Westminster government. Words such as inadequate, dependent and disordered behavoir were used commonplace. People previously defined as “poor” and severely disadvantaged locales were “othered”, providing a clear indication of the ways in which the politics of poverty and state welfare were to be increasingly fought-out in the media. Such misrecognition was a social injustice and stood in the way of progressive approaches to poverty and social welfare.

Glasgow was stigmatised by Labour politicians and sections of the media as being wholly representative of the kind of ‘welfare dependent’ localities which “welfare reform” needed to address. Overwhelmingly, the portrayal of the city and the people who lived in it was highly negative, drawing upon stereotypical representations of poverty in disadvantaged urban localities.

Against the foregoing, forming part of a wider “agenda of change” the Labour government announced a new phase of “welfare ‘reform”. They started the process, soon after bringing forward proposals to abolish Incapacity Benefit and Income Support and to make the long-term unemployed work in exchange for benefit. The programme was picked up by the Con/Dem government, greatly expanded and introduced piecemeal causing great hardship, chaos and resentment in Glasgow and throughout Scotland. In the last 7 years the disabled, unemployed and otherwise disadvantaged in Glasgow have been subject to an increasingly punitive welfare regime marginalising them in society creating and fostering the new, “underclass.”

New Labour politician, Jim Murphy,  in his paper said there existed a  ‘poverty of aspirations’ and a culture of dependency that not only distinguished poor people but confined them to poverty.  Glasgow is a city,  in New Labour terms,  that suffers from ‘aspirational deficit’. The needs for welfare dependency among Scots, cosseted by “English” money, signalled other emerging conflicts brought about by devolution. To rectify matters there existed a need to accept that the welfare system has become part of this breakdown, giving perverse incentives to too many people. It needed to be changed, to have a simple purpose, to move people from dependence to independence … http://www.smf.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2007/03/Publication-The-Politics-of-Aspiration.pdf

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Dec 2008: Benefit Reforms – Glasgow To Be The First In Line For Benefit Changes

Plans to FORCE more benefit claimants to prepare for work or face losing payments are a “fair deal”, says Work and Pensions Secretary James Purnell. He said private firms would be paid to get people back to work while those unemployed for a year would have to do four weeks’ full-time activity. Most people on incapacity benefit would be expected to attend job interviews. The Conservatives said they would back the plans in the face of an expected “big rebellion” from Labour MPs. A welfare reform bill is expected to be published in January and any changes would come in in 2010/11.

Conservative work and pensions spokesman Chris Grayling told Mr Purnell the government had adopted Tory policies, adding: “That is why I can assure you today that there is no doubt, we know you are going to face a big rebellion on the Labour backbenches, can I assure you that we will give these proposals our support.”

For the Scottish National Party, John Mason MP said the reforms risked demonising the unemployed. “While we will look cautiously and constructively at the wider proposals, half-baked and draconian reforms are not the answer,” he said. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7774113.stm

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The Con/Dem Government 2010-2015

Iain Duncan Smith, MP for Chingford and Woodford Green in North London made a few well-publicised fact finding trips to Glasgow, following which he launched his, “Centre for Social Justice” report in 2008, detailing his perceptions of Glasgow’s welfare problems and remedial measures necessary to correct the situation. The term, “broken society” became commonplace and the Tory party and media quickly associated Glasgow with it”.

In the 2010 general election, Tory Party leader, David Cameron relied heavily on Smith’s “broken society” arguments, and, while wishing to avoid any suggestion that they were solely responsible for the media coverage of poverty evidenced in Glasgow, nonetheless they were instrumental in portraying the people of Glasgow in very disparaging terms, albeit as a way of highlighting New Labour’s failures. An extract from the report:

“Shettleston being one of the more deprived areas in Glasgow, ‘Shettleston Man’, is a particular problem subject: This individual has low life expectancy. He lives in social housing, drug and alcohol abuse play an important part in his life and he is always out of work. His white blood cell count killing him directly as a result of his lifestyle and its lack of purpose.”

The stark message being that ill-health, unemployment and poverty are primarily matters of individual failure, but also of personal responsibility. The all pervading thread evidenced thoughout the report covers, family breakdown, welfare dependency, debt, drugs, poverty, poor policing, housing, and failing schools but it goes deeper, projecting a society in danger of losing any sense of personal responsibility, social responsibility, common decency and, yes, even, public morality.

The way forward was for the individual to embrace the ‘work habit’. This was to be the driving force behind the Tory ‘Breakthrough Britain’ policy brought forward by Smith following his Damascus-like conversion on a previous 2003 visit to Glasgow. The ideas advanced by Smith and Cameron, central to Conservative Party thinking, provided strong indications of the likely policy directions of any future Conservative UK government and heavily influenced and further shaped “New Labour’s” plans to overhaul benefits entitlement in line with Jim Murphy’s approach outlined in his paper: http://www.smf.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2007/03/Publication-The-Politics-of-Aspiration.pdf

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Summary

New Labour, in 2007-8 assisted by their Unionist Party colleagues and media conspiritors conducted an extended campaign against the people of Glasgow and Scotland demonising the newly identified, “underclass”. On completion of the softening up process there followed announcements concerning yet more rounds of welfare reforms invoking previously seeded ideas of welfare dependency and individualised explanations of poverty. The anti-welfare rhetoric continued unabated until the general election of 2010 and the aftermath of the Con/Dem government.

Scotland had a chance in September 2014 to break away from the smothering control of Westminster and “ping-pong” governance of Labour and Tory governments. The “Fear Campaign” conducted by Westminster and the media, including the supposedly impartial: BBC and the Civil Service was so powerful it frightened off sufficient numbers of Scot’s as to ensure the, “no” vote won the day.

Events since have provided evidence the “Yes” campaigners had got it right. Westminster, having refused the Scottish governments offer to include the Devo-Max option on the ballot and within the “Purdah” period, brought forward, through the “Daily Record”, a mish mash of “new” powers, to be devolved in the event of a “no” vote.

Two days before the referendum, Gordon Brown, ably assisted by the BBC was provided with nearly 3 hours of continuous television broadcast time addressing a group of Labour loyalists outlining the “new powers”. The measure had the desired effect, a 2% lead held be the “yes” campaign was lost.

Whilst the expressed will of the people of Scotland is to remain part of the UK an agenda needs to be drawn up so that discussions may be held seeking agreement as to new arrangements to be put in place.

The hastily prepared “Smith Report” is a joke document. It is entirely possible a “New” Westminster government made up of at least 50% “new” MP’s will reject it completely in favour of retaining the “status quo.” The “new” government is not bound to introduce anything agreed beforehand by a previous government.

The general election scheduled for 7 May 2015 provides opportunity for Scotland to send a clear and unambiguous message to the three Westminster Unionist parties that Scot’s will not be bullied, threatened nor told they are incapable of self-government.

Scotland’s voice will not be heard in Westminster through any party except the SNP. The legacy of 50 year’s of Labour Party control of Scotland through it’s so called Scottish MP’s is evidenced in the levels of deprivation and despair in Glasgow and other cities,  towns and villages throughout Scotland. Scottish Labour MP’s sent to Westminster are expected to “toe the party line” and that line does not expressly include the needs of their constituents. Scottish Labour MP’s are Unionist in mind, body and action.

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The ‘Broken Society’ Election: Class Hatred and the Politics of Poverty and Place in Glasgow East.
Gerry Mooney: The Open University:  Staff Tutor & Senior Lecturer (Scotland)
Gerry possesses a great deal of knowledge of Scottish political affairs and has written many papers: The full article is here: http://oro.open.ac.uk/18562/1/broken_society_Mooney.pdf
Categories
2015 General Election

This Lot Are Beyond The Naughty Step – Time They Were Evicted – 7 May 2015 Provides The Opportunity

 

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I posted articles, (listed below) covering a number of Scottish MP’s providing pen pictures of their activities over the period they held office as a Westminster MP. Have I missed anyone that needed covering?

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/08/29/all-about-jim-murphy/

https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/29/jim-spud-murphy-1992-1997-the-student-union-years-and-his-carefully-planned-and-jammy-rise-to-political-office/

https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/26/jim-spud-murphy-best-way-to-let-him-hang-himself-is-to-watch-him-in-action-a-selection-of-the-best-of-his-u-tube-videos/

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/08/31/time-to-bring-an-end-to-the-sarwar-dynasty-in-glasgow/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/09/01/douglas-alexander-saint-shrew-or-shrewd/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/10/12/margaret-curran-engages-mouth-before-brain-and-its-painful-for-the-viewer/

https://caltonjock.com/2014/09/12/margaret-curran-johaan-lamont-ladies-with-a-past-but-hopefully-no-futureccrone-report-lest-we-forget/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/09/08/glasgow-south-west-poorly-served-by-davidson-and-his-labour-party-colleagues-time-for-change-get-em-out/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/10/24/what-has-john-robertson-done-for-his-constituents-in-glasgow-north-west/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/10/22/tom-harris-hush-puppy-or-rottweiler-a-report/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/10/20/glasgow-north-east-willie-bain-mp-and-the-worst-served-community-in-the-uk/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/05/jim-cookie-jar-mcgovern-labour-mp-dundee-west-information-of-interest-to-the-public/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/11/26/michael-mccann-mp-south-lanarkshire-a-constituency-no-stranger-to-sleaze/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/11/22/the-life-good-times-of-jim-sheridan-mp-for-paisley/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/11/21/south-lanarkshire-once-a-miner-always-a-miner-jimmy-hood-mp/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/11/19/north-lanarkshire-labour-party-mafia-frankie-boy-roy-his-record/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/31/pamela-nash-mp-for-airdrie-shotts-troubled-5-years-in-post-constituency-aware-not/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/25/richard-baker-labour-msp-political-carpetbagger-or-plonker-standing-for-aberdeen-north-in-may-2015-indication-as-he-is-the-latter/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/16/david-i-am-the-brains-of-the-party-in-scotland-mundell-anonymous-photo-opportunity-mp-his-constituents-deserve-better/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/10/iain-mckenzie-inverclyde-mp-elected-as-a-clean-pair-of-hands-not-long-before-he-needs-to-wash-them/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/09/barry-black-19-years-old-selected-by-labour-to-stand-for-election-in-aberdeen-in-2015/

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2014/12/07/braden-davy-a-young-man-in-a-hurry/ (19 y/o going for the Gordon seat)

 

 

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https://caltonjock.com/2015/02/20/argyll-bute-alan-reid-runs-his-constituency-like-a-chessmaster-its-checkmate-and-your-out-my-wee-friend/

Categories
2015 General Election

Con/Dem – Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda headed by – The Rt Hon Alistair Carmichael MP – Blankets Scotland With Misleading and Dishonest Misinformation

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March 2015: The Campaign of Disinformation Continues – The Rt Hon and His Scotland’s Changing Leaflet Drop

A Con/Dem government leaflet, (production and distribution cost estimated at £3 million) has been sent to every one of the 2.5 million households across Scotland promoting changes, to be implemented over the next 2 years. The 8-page Scotland’s Changing leaflet contains details of new powers together with the benefits people in Scotland will retain as part of the UK.

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But hold on, let’s have a closer look:

1. The new powers have been agreed and guaranteed by all FIVE of Scotland’s major political parties. New powers are coming to the Scottish Parliament. They’ll make Holyrood one of the most powerful devolved parliaments in the world. The UK Government is going to change the law so that a range of new powers including new tax, new welfare and new voting powers are held by the Scottish Parliament. People in Scotland will still have the advantages of being part of a large UK economy, with a UK Pound, UK pensions and UK passports. Whatever your age and wherever you live, being part of the United Kingdom means we pool and share our resources.

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But the statement guarantees nothing and is meaningless. It needs to be considered against the “Vow” issued from Westminster a few days before the referendum. It promised, “extensive new powers” for the Scottish Parliament. “delivered by the process and to a timetable agreed” by the THREE parties.” There is no mention of Scots being consulted on the timetable for change or what will happen in the event Westminster MP’s return a “no” vote on the proposed new powers. Therin lies the problem for Scotland post the 2015 General Election, the “no” vote removed all pressure from Westminster. Scotland gave the Unionist parties, (Labour Tories and Liberals) the freedom to do as they wish with Scotland and they will.

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2. We will remain citizens of the UK with its strong defences and global influence. The UK’s strong defence forces also add extra security for families in an uncertain world.

UK defences are a joke have been savagely taken apart in favour of retaining/replacing the Trident Nuclear missile system. Our conventional armed forces are in a perilous state having been reduced to unsafe levels, (with more cuts planned). The navy is ill equipped and the surface fleet almost non-existent. Fighter aircraft are in many cases incapable of completing operations. An independent Scotland has no wish nor need to exert any global influence, except in the areas of trade.

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3. It also means that the UK’s large and diversified economy will continue to shield Scotland from sudden shocks like the recent fall in oil prices, or the need to rescue banks during the financial crisis.

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The UK’s large and diversified economy is a misnomer since it is carrying nearly £1.7 trillion of debt, of which £1 trillion has been added in the last 5 years of the Con/Dem government. The remaining debt was incurred through the incompetance of the previous Labour government applying correcting measures bailing out banks caught up in the, “housing Bubble” fiasco of which they had 3 years advance notice and did nothing. In any event there are no truly “Scottish” banks since they all operate out of London The reference to financial crisis and bank rescue is a red herring.

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The 2015 General Election, the “Vow” and matters arising.

There are less than 3 weeks before the start of the General Election “Purdah” period which curtails the activities of political parties. It will not be possible to get any of the proposed new powers, which will require a significant number of new Bills, to the statute stage.

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Few MPs want extra powers for the Scottish Parliament, (including many Scottish Labour MP’s). They will rebel and vote against proposals for change submitted to the Commons, so there will be a significant number of defeats at the hands of rebels. It may be possible to get proposed legislation through the Commons, (if all parties crack a 3 line whip) But they then go to the House of Lords and delays of up to a year that will bring to the process. So, no change this side of the General Election.

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Another look at the wording of the so called “vow”:

It promised, “extensive new powers” for the Scottish Parliament. “delivered by the process and to a timetable agreed” by the THREE parties.” There is no mention of Scots being consulted on the timetable for change or what will happen in the event Westminster MP’s return a “no” vote on the proposed new powers. Therin lies the problem for Scotland post the 2015 General Election, the “no” vote removed all pressure from Westminster. Scotland gave the Unionist parties, (Labour Tories and Liberals) the freedom to do as they wish with Scotland and they will.

 

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Reflect back to the stance of the Unionist parties in Westminster at the start of the referendum discussions. The Scottish government’s offer to include, “Devo Max” in the questions, to be put to the Scottish electorate was firmly rejected. It had to be “all or nothing”. There is no intention to give Scotland any new powers of note. What will be devolved will be little titbits, giving the appearance of power.

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Gordon Brown, the architect of the, “Vow” has previous in this type of subterfuge. His promises to the electorate on taking over the post of Prime Minister said “I will listen and I will learn. I want to lead a government humble enough to know its place, where I will always strive to be – and that’s on the people’s side. We’ve got to honour the manifesto of a referendum on the new EU Treaty . It is an issue of trust for me with the electorate.” The Labour Party, under his leadership denied the UK a referendum and ratified the Lisbon Treaty.

 

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Remember also Cleggs pledges in the Liberal Party 2010 manifesto, which he abandoned so that his party would take up the reins of power with the Tory party. Empty promises indeed.

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Returning to the 2015 General Election, it is entirely possible, regardless of the outcome that any or all of the present party leaders might resign, to be replaced with new leaders, who could be of a mind to abolish many of the powers presently devolved turning the Scottish parliament into a “talking shop” with very limited responsibility. Scot’s should remember that Westminster is sovereign and can do as it pleases. What it gives it can take away.

 

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Politicians are unable to pledge anything to the electorate until such time as they have a mandate to govern. Anything pledged therfore, before the 2015 General Election is “tripe” and a clumsy attempt at sleight of hand tactics by the (three amigos) Unionist parties.

Incurring a spend of £3 million on political propoganda is a gross misuse of the nations finance but this is presented by Con/Dem politicians as the acceptable face of Unionism. They underestimate Scot’s who are able to spot a liar when they see one.

 

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Is there anything Scots can do to claim their future?

There is. Vote SNP. A large group of Scottish MP’s fully committed to the Scottish electorate will provide the impetus for change ensuring Westminster MP’s do not backslide. A Scottish vote for labour or any of the other Unionist parties is a wasted effort since they vote with the party line which is not always to the benefit of those that they purport to represent.

Categories
2015 General Election

Civil Service Mandarins Plotted Against Scotland – Scottish Labour MP Sat On His Hands – Welsh MP Foughts For Scots Remember This Come The General Election

 

Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood was awarded a knighthood the day before he took up his postSir-Nicholas-MacPhersonScreen-Shot-2012-09-16-at-20.39.42

 

 

 

6 May 2014: Paul Flynn Welsh Labour MP walks out in protest against attack on Scottish independence

The entire two-hour-long Westminster Committee investigation into impartiality in the Civil Service was one long, concerted attempt to obliquely – and sometimes blatantly – attack the integrity of the Scottish independence referendum, the Scottish government, and Sir Peter Housden Head of Scotland’s civil service .

 

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The clip shows the astonishing – and humiliating – spectacle of Lindsay Roy, Scottish Labour MP, sitting silently while a Welsh Labour MP Paul Flynn, excoriates Sir Bob Kerslake for failing to censure Sir Nicholas Macpherson for ‘leaking’ his advice on currency union, and for attacking the Scottish independence referendum. Then walks out of the Committee.

 

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This is a UK Government that has lost control of a situation and the confidence of a country it never understood, and never tried to understand. As for the Scottish Labour Party – they are beneath contempt.

The video was soon deleted from UTube. But in a follow- up interview Paul Flynn, MP explained his actions:

 

 

 

December 2014:  Westminster Civil Service, “Devolved Countries Unit”, (Dirty Tricks) campaign team wins “special” Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service Award

The three amigo’s who actually run the UK: Sir Jeremy Heywood, Sir Bob Kerslake and Sir Nicholas McPherson collaborated and plotted against Scotland marshalling the full resource of the civil service attacking the Scottish government and anyone in support of the “Yes” campaign.

In the months after the referendum they expressed great satisfaction that their “Campaign of fear” had generated “fearties” in sufficient numbers so as to win the day for the Unionist coalition.

 

 

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An award, in recognition of the team’s outstanding achievement in making a difference on an issue of national significance, (the Referendum) was presented by the Cabinet Secretary and civil service head Sir Jeremy Heywood.

The proud team commented afterwards:

 

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* Paul Doyle; “This award is not just for the Treasury, it’s for all the hard work that was done by all government departments on the Scotland agenda.

The reality was in all my experience of the civil service, I have never seen the civil service pull together in the way they did behind supporting the UK government in maintaining the United Kingdom.

It was a very special event for all of us.”

 

* William MacFarlane, Deputy Director at HM Treasury, (Budget and Tax Strategy):

“As civil servants you don’t get involved in politics. But for the first time in my life, suddenly we’re part of a political campaign.

We were doing everything from the analysis, to the advertising, to the communications.

I just felt a massive sense of being part of the operation.

This being recognised [at the Civil Service Awards], makes me feel just incredibly proud.”

 

* Shannon Cochrane:

“we’ve learned that it is possible for civil servants to work on things that are inherently political and quite difficult, and you’re very close to the line of what is appropriate, but it’s possible to find your way through and to make a difference.”

 

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* Mario Pisani Deputy Director at HM Treasury, (Public Policy):

“In the Treasury, everyone hates you.  We don’t get thanks for anything.

This is one occasion where we’ve worked with the rest of Whitehall.

We all had something in common, we’re trying to save the Union here, and it came so close.

We just kept it by the skin of our teeth. I actually cried when the result came in.

After 10 years in the civil service, my proudest moment is tonight and receiving this award.

As civil servants you don’t get involved in politics. But,for the first time in my life, suddenly we’re part of a political campaign.

We were doing everything from the analysis, to the advertising, to the communications.

I just felt a massive sense of being part of the operation.

This being recognised [at the Civil Service Awards], makes me feel just incredibly proud. (Civil Service World)

 

 

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Any mention of the team members in the New Year honours list would be the ultimate kick in the teeth.

My understanding is that Civil Servants were obliged by their contract of emplyment to be strictly apolitical and deployment to duties such as described were forbidden.

But Sir Jeremy Heywood simply ignored the rules and instructed staff to ignore protocol:

Leaflets produced by HM Treasury and civil servants at the Scotland Office were also savagely critisised during the Scottish independence referendum.

A democratic political process in which the Whitehall civil service should not have been interfering.

The behaviour of the Whitehall Cicil Service  will ultimately be seen to be greatly damaging to any concept of the supposed ‘apolitical’ claims of the UK civil service.

Ann Doyle is quoted as saying:

“This award is not just for the Treasury, it’s for all the hard work that was done by all government departments on the Scotland agenda”.

In the interests of transparency and democratic accountability would it not be essential to hear more from them.”

 

 

Public Comments

“I expect they will  enjoy spending their ‘forty pieces of silver’ in London.

“They destroyed the hopes and aspirations of future generations to protect their jobs and to support the gentry. Shame on them! – No impartiality whatsoever.”

“I’m not sure that this article could be any more offensive to Scottish civil servants if it tried. The UK civil service does not end at Whitehall.”

“For the first time in my life, suddenly we’re part of a political campaign” So, not really evidence based policy making then?”

“So these are the ones we have to thank for how Scotland is now being treated , removing one of our safety lines Kinloss rescue for all the children who are below poverty line and wondering what sort of Christmas the other people enjoy.

I hope they do not bask in the false praise of the Whitehall mandrins for long.

Now that “Bitter Together” has won won the day Scottish pensioners will continue to be the lowest paid in Europe and heating bills will increase manyfold.

Faslane will be greatly expanded and the US will be invited back.

Westminster politicians are keen on stating that the UK needs nuclear weapons.

If this is the case they should be located near to where the civil servants who received the award live. Let them sit on the threat. Have a Merry Christmas I know loads of children that won’t.”

 

 

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Categories
2015 General Election

Battle For The Hearts And Minds Of Dundee – Supporters Air Their Views And The SNP Is Winning The Argument

HIGHLAND HEARTBEAT

 

29 January 2015: Brian Cox’s defection to the SNP is a hammer blow for Jim Murphy and Labour

Given the enthusiasm with which Brian Cox campaigned for a Yes vote during the referendum campaign, his decision to quit Labour for the SNP may not seem surprising. It is significant, though that Jim Murphy has made big play of wanting his party to be a place both Yes and No voters feel comfortable since becoming leader north of the border. His mantra has been that Labour values still run strong and people should put constitutional politics to one side and focus on other policies. Cox’s decision to quit – slamming the party’s, “empty rhetoric” accusing it of selling out in the process – severely dents those hopes.

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Providing voice overs for Tony Blair and Jack McConnell during previous election campaigns means Cox has by no means been a back seat supporter of Labour. And, as one of the most popular and effective celebrities when it came to campaigning for independence, his defection to the SNP is a hammer blow to Labour’s narrative. It is another blow to the party as it fights for its electoral life amid desperate polling figures for May’s general election. The Holywood actor’s declaration may not in itself seem shocking or significant, but it symbolises much bigger issues. http://www.thecourier.co.uk/opinion/blogs/kieran-andrews/brian-cox-s-defection-to-the-snp-is-a-hammer-blow-for-jim-murphy-and-labour-1.812899

 

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The aforementioned article generated a fair bit of heat amongst the Dundee electorate and this makes the content of interest to all who are interested in bringing an end to Murphy’s ambitions in Scotland

SNP
What do they expect. The abuse by labour directed at the yes campaign was vile. They expect people to just forget? NEVER going to happen!

 

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Labour
Absolutely pathetic, he is an idiot who will never be affected by the Tartan tory cuts and nasty policies like the cutting of early years teaching assistants in Dundee ten minutes later they increased their perks of power the councils hospitality budget. Our children’s route out of poverty sacrificed at the cost of free booze and buffets for SNP supporters. 4000 cut in hospital beds 4000 + cuts in teachers 2000 less nurses, bedroom tax con for 10 months ” we don’t have the powers to fund it then after relentless pressure from Scottish Labour Party the voluntary sector campaign groups and those the SNP elected members left the city to avoid facing the bin the bedroom tax group. They caved in and agreed to fund it in full no change in powers

SNP
You are a fool, worse a fool who appears unwilling or unable to retain any level of fact in your quest to blame everything on the SNP in an idiotic attempt to sustain the sinking ship that is the Labour Part in Scotland. Wake up man they have deserted their core supporters in favour of middle England, the Bankers and Thatcherism!

 

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Labour
I note you are not disputing the cuts in teachers, NHS beds, teaching assistants, of course you can’t as they are a matter of public record therefore one is left with the assumption that you are not being affected by the tartan tory cuts therefore are only interested in the Tartan tory propaganda. Maybe it would help you if you actually got out and spoke to the real people of Scotland who are not falling for your propaganda they believe what they are experiencing and seeing with their own eyes.

SNP
He is well known for his nastiness aimed at Yes voting Scots…he is a disgraces as a person. Folk don’t like him because he is just plain ignorant.

SNP
Who do you blame for the NHS fiasco and Education fiascos in England? Both worse than Scotland has experienced!

 

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Labour
You can’t argue with his remarks about “SNP elected members” – they are facts! I note that everyone who voted “no” is labelled as having viciously attacked independence voters etc- childish, really. Comments below are ridiculous, as in the reference to £1.3 trillion debt. The UK, especially Scotland, has been living beyond its means for years. Free prescriptions, free university places, higher grant per capita from Westminster, etc. It doesn’t grow on trees.

Where would an independent Scotland be right now with oil at $48 pb? Think of it – revenue from oil on the floor, higher unemployment, more social benefit claims, Clyde-side dead from lack of orders, power supplies in jeopardy with frackingforbidden and over-reliance on renewables – this in a country as cold as Scotland! I sometimes think I’m reading the Beano when I review SNP promises.

Just for once, answer the oil question, as this was the issue on which an independent Scotland’s future was predicated – and which you were warned was a very dangerous policy, given the volatility in the price of oil. A great country with several million of decent, well-educated people, is in danger of becoming a laughing stock, and all because porridge eaters swallowed Salmond’s lies, hook, line and sinker. You should be ashamed, very ashamed.

 

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SNP
what a load of drivel! You don’t mention the six figure MP expense claims or the £1.5 trillion national debt? SNP to blame for that as well?

Labour
The debt that was the result of the Labour government deciding to protect our economy, our banks, our saving, our industry and businesses. The only other choice was survival of the fittest and the wealthy.

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SNP
It was the result of WESTMINSTER the national debt! Started by liebour and multiplied by Tory. Nothing to do with SNP. Just as liebour refused to vote against austerity or fracking! Voted liebour all my life NEVER EVER AGAIN. Red Tory, sold their soul. Hence the 50%+ SNP support being polled

SNP
Utter nonsense Norway has a £600bn oil fund while thanks to Westminster mismanagement Scotland as part of the UK has a £1.5trn debt.

Labour
It’s your national debt too, the answer is simple and patently obvious. England has a population around 12 times that of Scotland and the patient premium is lower than that allocated to Scotland.

 

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Labour
The “expense claims” is garbage, as there are 600 plus MPs at Westminster, with many from the SW, NW and the NE, not to mention Wales, Scotland and NI. And of course, there’s Wee

Eck! Do you think only rich people should be allowed to enter parliament, thereby obviating the need for expenses? I could give you a dozen better reasons for arguing against the Union than that. You can do better than that, surely?

 

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SNP
What a load of opinionated drivel. I get expenses in my job but lucky if I need more then 5k per annum! I work half the year away from home! There is a huge difference

between REASONABLE expenses and Westminster expenses! as for the national debt, it us a DISGRACE the UK is in this mess when you compare us to Norway! The UK is finished, fact.

SNP
how ironic you pounce on the bedroom tax! people being made homeless on the breadline and idiots like you moan about the snp helping them! you shouldn’t be allowed to breed mate! people like you should be ejected to live south of the border. see hire much more you will have to moan about then! balloon

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LABOUR
I note that you are yet another Tartan tory that cannot make a comment without personal abuse I also note you have no answers to the fact that the tartan tories have had the power from day one to mitigate its affects on the Scottish people, by doing as the Northern Irish assembly have done they have stuck up for their electorate by refusing to implement the bedroom tax until they have exhausted all legal options open to them. Unlike the tartan tories who spent millions on ensuring that the Scottish people did not receive access to information about SNP policies through freedom of information requests.

In a perfect example the coverup of the massive escalation in V&A costs with regards to the bedroom tax they also could have changed Scottish law to make it illegal for any Scottish social landlord to evict any of their tenants for specificly bedroom tax debt. And their No1 priority policy if there was a yes win would have been a 3% tax cut for multi national companies and lest we forget or forgive them for their treacherous vote against the living wage being implemented in Scotland

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SNP
The “bedroom tax” was imposed on Scotland by a Westminster Government that Scotland did not vote for and despite the majority of our MP’s at Westminster opposing the measure.

Despite this Labour stood shoulder to shoulder with the Tory party to inform Scots we were “better together” and should vote no. Labour prefer Tory rule from London to Socialist rule from Edinburgh. In regards to corporation tax cuts that is again utter hypocrisy from Labour considering Gordon Brown cut corporation tax from 33-28%, a 5% cut the same as George Osborne! Indeed Gordon Brown is on record as stating he wanted to cut it MORE. He stated: “We have cut corporation tax twice and I want to go further,” he said. “We will reduce the tax again when we are able.” http://www.­telegraph.co.uk/fina­nce/economics/278926­4/Gordon-Brown-tries­-to-win-over-directo­rs-with-tax-reductio­n-pledge.html

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As for the living wage utter hypocrisy from Labour considering in November 2014 a proposal by SNP councillors to pay local authority apprentices the Living Wage in Greenock was thrown out by a Labour-controlled council committee. http://ww­w.greenocktelegraph.­co.uk/news/greenock/­articles/2014/11/26/­517095-bid-to-pay-li­ving-wage-to-apprent­ices-rejected/ In regards to the supposed “V&A” cover up that is nothing but a Labour lie as demonstrated by the complete lack of hard evidence presented.

SNP
Abuse? Oh come you sensitive little thing. That’s not abuse. Abuse is very different indeed.

SNP
I like many others was a card carrying member of the Labour party and senior Trade union activist, I felt physically sick when one of the Thatcherite Blair’s first acts was to praise Thatcher and invite her to tea at Downing Street. Protect our banks? he and that numb nut Brown deregulated the banks and set off a chain reaction that led to the UK’s involvement in the sub prime banking crash et al. As to NHS cuts our budget is cut from Westminster as a consequential of the Barnet Formula in proportion to what is spent in England and Wales. Why is it so difficult for the likes of you to grasp this simple concept?

 

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Labour
Bedroom tax is wrong, very wrong, but even you must see the logic behind trying to find bigger houses for families than having them occupied by single people. I’ve just seen a programme about it this morning and the black lady who eventually moved to a smaller house wanted to give up her 3 bedrooms to a family, providing she could find a smaller house, which she eventually did.your comment, mentions expenses. It depends on where you live and how you decide to manage the distance. Thatcher introduced the system because she was afraid of public reaction to a pay rise for MPs. The answer is to pay them on a par with their Euro counterparts and abolish expenses altogether. But what would the likes of you say?

 

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I spent years abroad on detachments to Italy and Germany where we stayed in hotels and were given an allowance for meals. My son worked for Adobe and was always away from home and his expenses were astronomical. Don’t know the details of your case so I can’t really comment. I agree, their expenses are over the top, but every Scottish MP got them too.
Me? I’d raise their pay and abolish expenses. Trouble is, those who live far away would suffer..

SNP
Scottish Government could not offset the bedroom tax as it was a RESERVED matter and permission had to be granted by Westminster and the money was deducted from the block grant

SNP
You see the problem mate – they don’t understand how things are done. As for the comments before yours, well there is no use arguing with them. They want everything and they want it now, regardless of cost or affordability. They are both logically and economically bankrupt!

 

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SNP
I’ll bet you didn’t describe him as an idiot when he supported labour or did you?

SNP
Calling Scottish Labour the Tartan Tories is not very nice Douglas but you may well be accurate….Labours shift to the right since Blair made me leave

SNP
I am an SNP supporter. Please tell me where I can get my free booze and buffet. I have never seen them; you didn’t just make that up, did you?

5belkl
As if to prove your point, he is right on the case. Sadly he has obviously never heard the saying, “Better that people believe you to be a fool,than open your mouth and prove it. “Could have been written for him, except he is not important enough, outwith his own self importance. I’ve tried to read his post again but still cannot make any sense of it, he just jumps from one rant to another with no reference to any proof. But then,I suppose when you have the egg man on your side, proof and truth are not obiglatory.

SNP
Jim Murphy promised to hire Yes voters as part of his team but he surrounded himself with rabid unionists like John McTernan, Blair McDougall and Susan Dalgety. You simply cannot work with such people.

SNP
And we’ll not forget their campaign as regards the pensioners. They were telling OAP’s that they wouldn’t have a pension if it was a yes vote. We were alerted to an old lady in Ayrshire that was so scared by this that she was stockpiling food. Thankfully AGE Scotland got involved through seeing our comments on facebook and they brought in the Social Services to help the old dear. However, she was just one that was brought to our attention, think of the thousands that’ll have suffered in silence. Labour, it doesn’t matter what you do and say now, you can NEVER wash that stain away. I ask everyone to vote SNP so that we can get rid of Labour in Scotland and push for home rule.

 

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Labour
Yet more of your evil Nasty propaganda I spoke to hundreds of pensioners before the referendum and not one mentioned anything abou labour saying anything about losing their pensions what they were complaining about was being called traitors for refusing to put up yes stickers,

SNP
Are you mad. Did you even listen to anything during the campaign? The threat of losing pensions was brought up again and again by, “bitter together”. Did you go through the entire referendum campaign with your eyes and ears closed?

Labour
Whereas the SNP were telling pensioners the NHS was going to be privatised into oblivion if we voted No. Has that happened yet?

SNP
Not yet. Please hold…….

 

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SNP
No such thing as Scottish Labour it just does not exist as a legal entity

SNP
It’s like British Gas & Scottish Gas owned by Centrica, & labour are full of gas !!

Labour
What was that you said about personal abuse in a comment?????

SNP
Congratulations, for joining the rest of us who are sick of the manipulations to get a majority in Westminster.

SNP
I spoke to lots of pensioners through my work during the referendum campaign and many of them said they couldn’t vote Yes because their pensions would stop!!! I tried to tell them otherwise but one or 2 of them had been cold-called by representatives from the labour party and told exactly that over the phone. It doesn’t take long for news to spread in the elderly community and even the ones who might have preferred to vote Yes would be pressured not to by friends. A disgusting tactic, that will Never be forgotten!!!

 

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Labour
Absolute rubbish pensioners I spoke to on the phones on the doorstep and in the streets were all complaining about SNp calling them ttraitors because they refused to put yes stickers in their windows and abused in the streets for refusing to wear yes stickers,

SNP
The pensioners I spoke to and ones I know were scared witless by “project fear” not because of yes poster or badge wearing refusal

SNP
any further out of touch mate and you would be in orbit.

Labour
Vote tartan tory guaranteed to get english tories all shaking hands and big cheesy smiles on the telly and in pictures in the newspapers together.

 

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SNP
We feel your pain mate, Labour being rejected by Brian Cox. Your party, whatever you call yourself or present yourself, are the problem and not the answer to Scotland’s needs. Labour no longer represent us, its policies do not reflect our concerns, aspirations and hopes, and the bargain you made with the Tories during the referendum have made it and you irrelevant. Many more will make the journey that Brian Cox has taken. I doubt you ever will.

SNP
Tartan Tory I thought we were extreme left wing according to the press. Do you actually live on planet earth, or in a bubble

SNP
Obviously it is not Planet Earth as he is always bubbling.

SNP
Tartan Tory? That highlights your idiotic mindset. The Scottish National Party are the only left of centre party in Scotland if not the UK the rest are blue Tories, red Tories, yellow tories and UKIP Tories. Wake up man!

Labour
So the Scottish Socialist Party, Greens, Respect, etc. don’t exist? All are far more left-wing than the SNP.

 

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SNP
Better tartan Tory than red

SNP
Care to comment on your hero McGovern’s recent behaviour, re not voting on bedroom tax issue? Or will this be another tumbleweed moment for you. And on fracking as well.Never mind he will soon have more time on his hands.Maybe his glorious leader will show him a few keepy up tricks.

SNP
Are you proud of labour’s support of the tories austerity bills?

SNP
What about there refusal to back the amendment to devolve fracking to Holyrood? Does that fill you with pride?

SNP
Let’s go back to when the labour party turned into the Tory party… Do/did you support the changing of Clause IV?

SNP
You have a cheek describing the SNP as “Tartan Tory” considering it was LABOUR MP Alistair Darling who was given a standing ovation at the 2013 Tory conference. http://w­ww.scotsman.com/news­/politics/top-storie­s/scots-tories-give-­alistair-darling-sta­nding-ovation-1-2960­255

 

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SNP
You might want to drag yourself out of the 1980s and into this century. The ‘Tartan Tory’ smear stopped working decades ago. At least find a smear that is relevant to today’s Scottish politics.

SNP
The real people are about to obliterate the labour party’s Scottish branch. Those are the real people speaking.

SNP
Wow this guy is in complete denial and delusion. Having spent 2 years cheek by jowl campaigning with the Tories , using Tory money and Labour mouthpieces then to refer to SNP as Tartan Tories is beyond parody.

SNP
Had Brian Cox decided to stay with Labour that would have been a far bigger blow to us.

SNP
Brian Cox is merely reflecting the almost total disillusionment of most Scottish Labour members/voters and their overwhelming repugnance at SLAB getting into bed with the Tories during the Referendum.

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SNP
Johann Lamont’s resignation – and her very true description of what Scottish Labour had become, which she spat out on her departure – followed by Murphy’s fairy-tale reinvention of his part in Better Together (Not a Unionist???????), allied to his employment of gutter trash like McTernan and McDougall, only re-emphasize just how low that Party has fallen, up here.

SLAB are finished in Scotland and have just been defined by the UK Electorate Commission, no less, as nothing more than an “Accounting Unit” for Westminster Labour. They are merely a lowly branch office of Ed’s London HQ, with Murphy achieving the public status of a ridiculous Westminster Glove-Puppet. Every­thing is controlled from down south and their priority will always be to get Milliband elected – nothing else. Scotland will, as usual, be just a wee afterthought. No wonder Cox left this discredited, derided and despicable shambles.

 

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SNP
If Murphy had honestly wanted to bring Yes voters back to Labour, his hiring of John McTernan who is well known for his vicious attacks on Yes voters was, to put it mildly, a strange decision.

Labour
What year is this? 2015? Brian Cox joining the SNP is not significant or surprising any more. Furthermore, it makes no difference – he lives in New York. Very big joke and obviously stage-managed. Cox has been defacto SNP for years. Surprised it made the news, and I’m not joking He voted for Salmond in 2011: http://news.stv.­tv/scotland/241730-s­cottish-film-legend-­cox-dumps-labour-for­-snp/ Nothing to do with the Yes campaign – he was already voting SNP. Will he now finally decided to come out of tax exile in NewYork

Labour
An actor who spent the last year openly arguing against Labour and for independence is joining the SNP. Why is this news again?

 

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Categories
2015 General Election

Labour Party At War – Fallout From Resignation Of Lamont – Hardman Ian Davidson Gives Murphy the Glasgow Kiss

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The purpose of this post is to reflect on events of late October 2014, only a few short weeks after the referendum in which the Unionist labour Party, together with their full partners the Tory and Liberal/democratic Parties, the unbiased Civil Service, the BBC, just about every other media outlet, the banks, corporate businesses and many other Unionist factions emerged victorious.

In the weeks after the referendum the 1.6 million that voted for independence analysed the outcome and although feeling betrayed and cheated by the negative fear driven campaigning of, the Unionist parties that made up, Better Together, accepted defeat.

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But, near despair was tempered by the promise, (from the leaders of, Better Together) of a devolution of significant new powers to the Scottish parliament within months.

In January 2015, The “Smith” report was duly compiled, savagely doctored, removing anything of note then sent down to London for acceptance. It has not been accepted and it appears there will not be a transfer of anything of note to Scotland for many a year. So Scotland got stuffed again, as many yes voters feared would be the case.

Arthur's Seat March and Rally

Another fallout from the referendum was the resignation of Johann lamont who attacked Ed Miliband and the controlling labour Party Heirarchy in London.

Following her departure there was a short leadership contest and Jim Murphy took up the post of leader of the labour party in Scotland. In his first public statement he said that he was the undisputed leader of the Scottish Labour Party, (which officially does not exist) and he would not take instructions from London.

 

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Ed Miliband was quick to set him right when he added detail to Murphy’s outburst stating, for the record that Jim’s powers applied only to aspects of scottish politics that were fully devolved to the Scottish parliament. In all other matters he would take instructions from London. So no change Jim. He was blethering as only Murphy can.

Reflecting on the Coup and the roles of the key players it is opportune to return to the time Johann Lamont resigned so that the views of others, including many Scottish labour Party supporters might be viewed. The post might be long but it is informative.

 

ed and jim

29 October 2014: Lamont was the victim of a Murphy coup, claims Labour MP Ian Davidson

In a scathing attack, veteran Glasgow South MP Ian Davidson said Johann Lamont, who quit as leader last Friday, had been treated shamefully by the shadow international development secretary’s allies, who conducted a whispering campaign against her. He did not name Jim Murphy, but in a bid to derail his leadership ambitions, Davidson said it would be “absurd” for Labour to elect a Scottish party leader who had never previously considered a role at Holyrood.

Davidson spoke out as Sarah Boyack, Scottish Labour’s former transport minister, announced she was standing for the top job while sources confirmed Mr Murphy’s intention to throw his hat in the ring, probably before the end of the week. Meanwhile, friends of Kezia Dugdale, Scottish Labour’s highly rated education spokeswoman, said she was keen to stand for deputy leader if a vacancy arose.

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Davidson said: “We are in the middle of a coup. “It’s not Star Wars: Return of the Sith but it’s certainly the return of the Blairites and the Network.” He said the Network, a faction of Labour figures on the right of the party in the late 1990s, had always resented Ms Lamont’s election as leader in 2011. He added:  “There is an extent to which she has been treated as a wee lassie. “Because they could not pull her strings, they ignored her and went around her.”  In a clear attack on the East Renfrewshire MP he said:  “I don’t think we can have an MP as leader who has not expressed a previous interest in standing for Holyrood, but only wants to go in as leader.” Davidson, seen as cautious about devolution in the past, also said Scottish Labour should choose the next Secretary of State for Scotland if Ed Miliband wins the UK General Election next May.

http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/scottish-politics/lamont-was-the-victim-of-a-murphy-coup-claims-labour-mp.25722918

Puppet on a string

Comments:

Dear, dear there seems to be a lot of scrambling going on behind scenes. Will this suit Mr Murphy and how is Mr Sarwar bearing up now that he has discovered the “coup” is designed to take him out as well? What a bunch?

shettlestonhouse

Looks like Ian Davidson was bang on when he said; “The debate will go on in the sense there is a large number of wounded still to be bayoneted …” We just assumed he meant the Yes voters and parties – doh!

Isn’t it wonderful when a sinister comment comes back to bite them in the bahoochie? Bayonetting their own seems to be a labour pastime – not to mention bayonetting their own toes.

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Don’t knock it, there’s good material for a television series here.  ‘The Sith Of It’? Malcolm Tucker would have field day with this lot. Sith Happens.

Jack & Victor would’nt be able to make this sorry bunch of Nobody’s seem funny. Dire Straits sums them up.

sarwarbrownlamont

To see where all this leads and the ‘real’ forces at work, look into the background to Julia Gillard’s defeat in Australia.

They remind of the tv comedy show The Adams Family. With Murphy acting as LURCH. Come to think of it,its fits like a glove (THING. )As labour have been Lurching from Left to Right for years. It seems the labour family are in big trouble. The left does not Trust the right Let the battle begin! ps, The losers here are the Scottish public-AGAIN.

Would that be the “coup” that’s pronounced “cowp” ?

vision murphy

Perhaps it’s ‘chicken coup’…

Well hopefully Eggy Murphy will get egg on his face … again!!!

That’s the yesser spirit “egg them on” No time for Murphy whatsoever. He’s a thoroughly despicable person who appears to be calm but , has a foul temper. However violence is NOT the answer.

iandavidson

Have a think about what’s happening here. They are almost certainly building Murphy up to be a pantomime villain so that he can then be defeated by losing the contest to a Scottish MSP. This will demonstrate that Westminster doesn’t control Scottish labour and so it will emerge “renewed”. Slightly machiavellian but exactly what you’d expect from them. If Murphy wins then its just pure incompetence.

IRAQ

That would just put lipstick on the pig. It wouldn’t take long for UK Labour in Scotland to revert to type – ie – pure ham.

Findlay has just flung his hat into the ring, should he be elected all he has to do is call it as it is, that he is there as a representative of New Labour Scotland

Eh, jaw hangs down, mouth agape. I thought Ian Davidson and Jim Murphy were close, got that wrong. And Ian Davidson effectively confirms the existence of the shadowy “Network”.

fear murphy
I’m at a loss for words. That’s unusual! Here, I’ll let Davidson speak about Lamont: “Because they could not pull her strings, they ignored her and went around her.”

Don’t worry it is not the first time you got it wrong, we are getting used to it

Not as wrong as the ex Scottish Labour voters who previously trusted this gaggle of political hypocrites and unscrupulous chancers.

jim murphy mormons

Completely concur .. and I say that as a Labour voter of some 30 years standing.

Almost everyone I know Ross who voted Labour in the past now say that they are ex-Labour. I have never known such anger against any party except perhaps the Thatcher government.

Hear Hear I say as an ex Labour voter and party member. I opted out when Blair called our young men to arms based on a lie. When I mentioned this I was berated by a labour councillor on this forum saying this person had no respect for me for doing this. I’m guessing this person is losing respect for many now. Or maybe this person should take a close look at what the party has become and rethink the blind support for a party that can no longer call itself a party of the people.

murphy nuc

last time I voted Labour was when Blair first got in. I lost faith in them then and would never consider voting for them again. They have made their bed, let them lie in the squalor of it

Me too – not the party that guys like my da busted a gut for

brown pocketmoney

this gaggle are keen to talk now they never opened their beaks before the referendum

We now have a chance to see if “sane” voices prevail or are silenced. I’ll quote from my late post on another column if you’ll indulge me: “Two starker candidates there could not be. If Jim Murphy’s hired, his job will be to keep the war going with the “nats” and try to put them in their place. On the other hand, in Sarah Boyack there’s a danger that peace might break out in the Scottish Parliament. Sturgeon might actually like her ! If you look at previous exchanges between them they have more the atmosphere of planning a school trip than deep rooted tribal sparring. The parliament might actually turn into an constructive, industrious place that the people of Scotland admired. Apart from anything else, both of them are concerned about eradicating poverty and Boyack’s got a bee in her bonnet about climate change and renewables – not exactly the SNP’s most exposed flank.

Gordon-Browns-Cabinet-001

Can’t see the (London) Labour hierarchy letting that happen ! (But if they did, I wouldn’t complain).

‘gaggle of political hypocrites and unscrupulous chancers’. Brand Labour defined! Well done PC.

“We”? That would be you who, you and Charlie?

Plus just over 2million:

Douglas Alexander2

Can’t say I’m surprised From the false man of the people with the Iron Bru crates to the oft repeated “it’s only a dry cleaning bill” when asked about the egg on his shirt by the supine media, to the visceral dislike of any dissenting voices, the flipping , Iraq ……..the list goes on. Of course the irony of him standing given the comments made about autonomy and dinosaurs by Lamont is lost on both him and his Network apparatchiks or maybe it’s just ignored.

Stick it in the washing machine like everyone else ! 😃

alexander1

Typical Labour Party. I don’t think Murphy will be much better than Lamont as the labour leader. Murphy will just be London’s yes man in Scotland and the only reason I can think he would be interested in taking up the position is a promise of a lordship in the future. You know the usual carrot for a labour politician.

you do him down sir and I’m sure he’ll be the best branch office manager of a branch office party in a branch office country that Labour have ever had.

baillie 2

I see where you`re going there..just twigged.

Took you a while.

Bang on, that goes for all National parties, all strings are pulled in Westminster, none of them can be trusted by the people of Scotland!!

I am perfectly sure that there are Labour MSPs in Holyrood who are supportive of independence. They may have hated the SNP in the past but if that had any courage or principles

balls3

whatsoever, they should now join the SNP. Scotland and the rest of the UK are moving in different directions, and it is not going to stop. They have different needs, a different socio – economic structure and a different demographic. We are also a different country!

balls6

“It’s not Star Wars: Return of the Sith but it’s certainly the return of the Blairites and the Network.”Ian Davidson of all people. Well, Mr Davidson, as you well know, Sith Happens. This is developing into a monumental struggle between the Left and Ultra right of the Labour Party, not only in Scotland, but also rUK. If only these dissenters had voiced their protests before the referendum, they would be at the forefront of a Reborn Scottish Socialist Labour Party by now, and possibly be heading towards government in an independent Scotland, where they could actually deliver social democratic policies in May 2016. It’s never to late , Mr Davidson. I predict the offer of a Lairdship in an attempt to smother his and other Left Wing protests. I hope Murphy completes the Network’s treacherous and not so covert coup d’état; a gift to the cause of full independence if he pulls off this mad bloody takeover. ‘How like a fawning Publican he looks.’ ‘The Network’ ; The Establishment?

I fear the same hapless bunch might just have brought the same self serving hypocrisy to an Independent Scotland. They have to be wiped out. Prisoners should be taken though, not ‘bayoneted’.

There would be one difference. We Scots citizens could hold their feet to the fire, and ensure they kept their manifesto promises/vows/pledges….A government of the people, by the people, and instantly accountable to the people of Scotland. No more FPTP jiggery pokery, no HoL undemocratic second Chamber, no London/SE Establishment pulling the strings, no more 59 against 591 democratic deficit, parliamentarians Up Here bound by our written constitution. I consider it unthinkable that any political party Up Here could U turn on, say, tuition fees, or privatise our NHS, or sell off the Postal Service, without the democratic PR consensus of the citizens of Scotland. As I observe, why wait ’til now, when the (loaded) die have been cast? Independence is coming sooner than later, and Westminster is inadvertently (sic) accelerating the day. Perhaps the Davidsons and the McConnells of this world realise that now. We can but hope.

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Murphy should be in jail. It is absolutely essential that everyone in Scotland becomes aware of how much this man has cost/stolen from the taxpayer.

Please folks look at Murphy’s long association with the Anglo-American right-wing thing tank The Henry Jackson Society. Just look it up ; its a frightening collection of ex CIA/ British security plus some of the most conservative US political commentators and Tory right-wingers and Murphy is their favourite Labour voice.

blair-gadaffi Just Good friends

What a bunch of back stabbers who sold out our country, sold out our poor and who are selling out each other. wonderful, isn’t it?!

I have been convinced for a long time that for Scotland to move forward and become independent Labour must be wiped out as a political force. A Yes vote would have allowed this lot to avoid taking responsibility for their rhetoric as part of the no campaign and even increase their power at Holyrood – all sins forgiven. That would clearly have been a disaster. One of the best things to stem from a no vote, and having to wait a few more years for independence, is that it gives Labour time to destroy itself once and for all and join the Tories and Libdems on the scrap heap. The unfolding events will serve as an eye opener to those that still had faith in Labour – many of whom must now regret voting no.

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Never thought of that. Sadly, you may have a point. In which case we may yet see Jim Murphy join the SNP!

I, for one would not take in any of these Lieburtroffers, but there may be some Labour MSPs that I would welcome – now!

I think Murphy is politically closer to the Tories than the SNP to be honest…

Something tells me his application would ‘go astray’.

Onto the ‘No’ table’? Temporarily,of course.

File 13…. Permanently! …. Please.

Future headline ……… “Labour MSP s defect en masse to SNP!” in order to preserve their personal interests!

Very unlikely, he is a right wing politician and serves the elitists and for self gain, he cannot be trusted!!

Jim Murphy try – as if he would ever be accepted

freinds-reunited2

I am impressed. I had no idea it was an organised coup. I had imagined in my innocence that the ladies brakes finally failed and she simply ran out of control.
Didn’t Iain Macwhirter predict Murphy for this job some time ago?

I recall it being mentioned before the referendum!

Ian Davidson should be aware by now that Westminster Labour will always attempt to control the party in Scotland. He must also be aware that this means that they will always have to march to an English agenda. This will be a right wing agenda. The only way out of this greedy, self seeking, neo liberalist hegemony is an independent Scotland. Get real Mr Davidson. This ‘Union’ is a farce!

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Having read some quotes attributed to Ian Davidson before the referendum i agree 100% Douglas

Is Kezia Dugdale going to be the first of those who wouldn’t stand for leader to stand for the deputy post ?
If this happens then we can see why “Scottish” Labour was willing to take a back seat during the two years of the referendum campaign. Scotland is poorly served by Labour politicians who prefer to be lead rather than take the lead.

I think none of the youngsters want the job at the moment. After all it will only be leading the party through the doldrums of opposition for the next few years. They’re young enough to wait and see if a recovery gives them some chance of real power later on. Of course it might be they don’t want to get on the wrong side of Mr Murphy.

baillie15

I think you’re right and the first line of your post says it all. Many of the youngsters were elected in 2011 and are still learning the ropes. I would be surprised if any of them are interested in the Deputy’s job either especially if Mr Murphy wins as it would be one of them who would have to ‘run’ the party from Holyrood under his directions from Westminster.

Perhaps they have been warned off by Murphy’s secret police.

They have either socialist interest to expound or not, maturity will follow, if they cant speak up now they never will.

I suppose I’m, rather cynically, assuming their interest is in power rather than socialism.

_1159728_frankroy150

Deadly poison flows around Labour arteries. Every day more is fed into the system. Is it little wonder we hear Alistair Darling wants out. Perhaps he cannot face the possible humiliation of loosing his seat next May? So nice to be warm and cosy in the House of Lords.

Yes, the New Year Honours list is going to be fascinating (u=nless they make them wait a while).

republicandarling

whats the betting he knows he is going to be in the house of lords next year for services rendered in the referendum after all it runs in the family his uncle was a sir and a tory mp Ladbrokes widnae gie you a bet on it

Great to see them all better together as one big happy family!

You reap what you sow, by voting no.

Nice one!

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What does Labour hope to achieve here? Do they think they endear themselves to an electorate whose insight has come on leaps and bounds in the past two years? I would never have predicted before 18 September that Labour would start to disintegrate so quickly and spectacularly, but the benefit of hindsight shows that the arguments presented by Scottish Labour during the campaign were bogus and designed to bolster itself rather than its nation. Do they seriously think Jim Murphy is going to turn their fortunes round, when he was the most vociferous No campaigner out there? If he thinks an egg was bad enough, wait till he sees the pelters coming his way.

you recently said you were quite new to this stuff. This is good, because it gives you a fresh and less jaundiced perspective.

“The benefit of hindsight shows that the arguments presented by Scottish Labour during the campaign were bogus and designed to bolster itself rather than its nation.” Some of us auld yins could see this – there isn’t really much that’s new in politics (and politicians) – only the details.

prescottre

This is where the SNP has the edge. A friend of mine said in the 1980s (of the SNP), “We’re just enthusiastic amateurs compared with two professional machines”. Things have changed a bit since then, but they still have freshness and enthusiasm lacking in the others.

Ach, we’ll look back on these posts in 20 years and say the same about the SNP! See – I’m getting the hang of it now!

try months instead of years!

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I think the SNP…you know, the party that’s tripled its membership in the past few weeks (with, granted, all the problems of expectation over experience this causes) must bow its head in deference to Labour in the backstabbing, infighting and, to quote Mr Davidson, “bayoneting the wounded” championships. Gold medals all round!

As they say in football “you only sing when you’re winning”, mind you having lost the referendum it’s not that great a victory. First sign of defeat and the knives will be out.

I remember the truculence of Will Carling, the England Rugby captain of the 1990s. Win, lose or draw his bottom lip still tripped him up. I wonder if there’s a parallel?

straw2
Wrong again

Yes you can turn a good amateur into a very good professional. Best thing you can do with a bad professional is sack ´em

The SNP also survived and grew because of courage and principles. Apply that to the self serving hypocrites of Labour and you find an empty space waiting desperately to be filled.

Labour: Life with the Borgias, this is turning into Scotland’s favourite soap. What next? Having disposed of his rivals one by one, prince Jim has power torn from his grasp as Cardinal Tony Blair makes a shock return to politics? I hope someone is keeping notes for the docudrama after the election disaster of 2016.

BlairMugshot

I really hope and pray this man becomes leader of what has now become the Scottish joke. As a woman I cannot wait to see how the London media try to sell him to the electorate particularly as the hate campaign against Alex Salmond included the assertion that women did not like him.

miaow but I like it

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Well done Ian Davidson! (Now there are words that I never thought I would write!) We now see just what a parcel of self serving rogues the Labour party really are. It is though quite amusing to see that parcel unravelling in the way that it is. Karma?

Labour – One big happy family.

I hear the sound of bayonets being sharpened.

no, it’s daggers for the backs of their ‘friends’

Steak -knives tomorrow night ‘is this a dagger I see before me’?

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Im delighted, anything that shatters Labour is fine with me, They took us as a bunch of fools who would vote Labour indefinately, the only thing on their mind was the expenses trough, Jim Murphy a carreer politico with big ambitions at the trough.

The labour party even hate themselves. There like a rabid dog. It will bite anyone.

Ian Davidson did stand for Scottish Labour’s leader against Johann when she was elected, so maybe he is thinking of throwing his hat into the ring also. He might think his Westminster seat is not a certainty in the general election but as Scottish leader he could get into Holyrood as top of the list on the PR vote. It’s a nice fall back job if the GE goes against him.

baillie2

No, Davidson stood as deputy leader.

Sadly. Sadly. Sadly. Sounds about right.

Mr Davidson had better watch his back as he may find out that he is one of the wounded that is to be “bayoneted”. Lol

glad to see all you assorted tories enjoying yourself in this discussion

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It would be a mistake to think that only Tories would celebrate the demise of this odious collective.

Does that include the Green and Socialist assorted Tories? Perhaps not, as, after all the Green Party, the SSP and indeed the SNP weren’t standing shoulder to shoulder on the same platform as the Conservative and Unionist Party only a few weeks ago. Had you forgotten?

Really? I’ve voted SNP in the past because I wanted to vote for a left wing party. What other serious choice did I have? Labour? Oh dear, I’ll crack the jokes if you don’t mind…

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It is understandable Tom that you no longer recognise a discussion amongst socialists. Not something you will be privy to often, indeed ever.

Not very original or at all accurate. The only riposte that a wounded Labour supporter has is to name call. The SNP is a far more socialist party than Labour currently are. I for one should be a ‘natural’ Labour voter, post Independence, but could never support candidates like Davidson or Murphy or Baillie or Doyle. Please let Labour clean up its act.

And they are having a Gala Dinner tomorrow! Will it be plastic tumblers and spoons only?

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Four fish suppers and a bottle of Irn Bru. They’re certainly out of knives.

Tears before bedtime!

This all might make interesting reading at breakfast,and bring a little hilarity at lunchtime,but I would think that what the Scottish people want in a political party at Holyrood,is one that can confidently, form a government with its leadership present in the Scottish parliament,and with policies in place that have been thought out specifically for the benefit of Scotland and it’s people, not a rag,tag and bobtail leadership of childlike adolescence whose loyalty is in another place and hasn’t been elected into Holyrood by anyone on the Scottish electoral role.

 

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I thought Holyrood belonged to the Scottish people,not the British Labour Party,I think the manner in which Scotland is being treated by the Ed Miliband gang of thieves it’s time we removed for good this party from our country before we lose our right to elect our own Msp’s

This from the man who advocates bayoneting the wounded and is a ‘veteran’ of the Labour hegemony which sold out Scotland under the banner of keeping the Conservatives out of Westminster and them in. A strategy that failed miserably for Scotland whether they won Westminster or not.

Murphy is the best bet for the future of an independent Scotland. He will split the Labour asunder as people like Davidson and Findlay rally the unions behind the Left and Murphy will seek the support of the Right, Blairites. In the interest of the Labour Party in Scotland, Murphy should and might NOT decide to stand but I sincerely hope he does!

backstabbers

I think the New Labour and Unionist Party in Scotland is a mixed bag. There is a very small number of probable socialists or at least social-democrats who work hard for their constituents and fewer still who actively listen to their views. We see the likely candidates in Scotland in their voting patterns; they’ll be the ones who are willing to vote against the Party line – and remember the Party line will always be that of the Westminster Party (New Labour and Unionist Branch). To a certain degree, I think these individuals deserve credit for apparently trying to act on their principles within a party that years ago became part of the Westminster machine. I would have much greater actual respect for these individuals if they acknowledged their party was no longer the party of the people and that now actively sees voters as a means to their end. That end is always power at westminster in the interests of the westminster machine.

I watched and heard Sarah Boyack being interviewed yesterday. She showed skill in avoiding giving any straight answers to direct questions and saying nothing at all that might upset anyone. She has been an elected member at the Scottish Parliament since it was reconvened in 1999. She might have commitment to Scottish interests and recognise the need for autonomy to allow these interests to be properly addressed. Yesterday’s interviews and statements have no clue. Haviing said all that, I think it likely that Murphy will be the nominal leader of a non existent entity since there is no actual Scottish Labour to lead in the first place. He will most certainly ensure it stays that way. I have some confidence that he will switch potential voters off in 2015 and 2016.

bain13

Taking an overview of recent happenings, the Labour Party, which we doubt works primarily for the people in UK, has worked more for themselves and the benefit of the European Union and the development of the far left wing socialist governments of the modern 27 countries in the EU.
On the positive side the red flag doesn’t show bloodstains. It would appear that Mr Ed is still thinking what he should do about this debauchle. Lack of leadership seems to be endemic, if ever there was a time for clear direction from the top it is now, but there is none. The queue for second place is growing! Why? Because first place has been taken and the “boss” will be absent so only looking after the branch shop is available. Nice job for a local they are genetically suited! Roll on May!

Such a delightful spectacle it is to watch one deeply unpleasant, misogynistic bully of a man attack a war-mongering creep of a man. So typically undignified, so very “Scottish” Labour.

brown3

It all derives from their deep sense of entitlement. They are like the Conservatives, believing they have a right to rule.

As another Labour MP panics about the safety of their cosy Westminster seat, the move towards independence is a little easier with every day that passes. With Labour’s ‘family’, indulging in a stair heid rammy daily, the Scottish people can judge whether the Labour party serves us or itself.

Murphy is the least of the least as far as “trust” is concerned, and THAT is really saying something.

The man has always come across as disingenuous and I wouldn’t trust him to go for the shopping, let alone run the party in Scotland. (Mind you as a willing lieutenant of Westminster).

McConnell in kilt

Can we have a Thick of It, please,AI? Malcolm Tucker being sent up to Scotland. Peter C can take a break from Doctor Who.

This is fascinating. Ian Davidson has gone from being a blustering bully who unfairly attacked an innocent BBC presenter to a “hero” in the eyes of certain individuals on this thread just because he attacks the labour party. Still if nothing else it gives the usual suspects the opportunity for their usual Orwellian 2 minute hate, enjoy!

He does lift the lid on the back stabbing and infighting in the labour party. This wont come as news to most of us but nevertheless, it’s important to reveal the type of people that make up the Scottish (lol) Labour and Unionist party.

Jim, if you can interpret “hero” in the words “deeply unpleasant, misogynistic bully of a man” I would suggest you need to re-read 1984 as the subtle nuances of Newspeak appear to have gone so far over your head they are a danger to air traffic.

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What is more fascinating is how you seem to suggest that several attacks on the hypocricy of the man, and more than a bit of pathos and irony in posts, you interpret as being SNP supporters finding a ‘hero’.

More than fascinating, its amazing.

Jim Murphy is clearly a very divisive character. So can he win when he has created all sorts of enemies at Westminster, Holyrood, within the unions and probably the party’s rank-and-file.

We seem to be at the start of an “Anyone but Murphy” campaign.

McTernan

Labour are expert marksmen when the target is their own foot.

Even when it’s firmly in their own mouths!

Until some of these Labour MPs start putting themselves forward for seats in the Scottish Parliament anything they say will mean little.

Please, please, as a reward from the Three Amigos and future family stability, the leader of the Scottish Branch of Labour United should be an MSP. That would be the decent thing to do and leave the MPs in United London.

baillie5

“It’s not Star Wars: Return of the Sith but it’s certainly the return of the Blairites and the Network.”

Classic!

On a serious note Jim Murphy is the embodiment of London Labour control. Johann Lamont tried to be independent of London Labour but London has undermined her forcing her to leave then they can parachute their own placeman in.

Unwittingly, this could be the final nail in labours coffin.

Perhaps due to his invisibility and failure to lead on this debacle Ed Milliband should now consider his position as leader of the British Labour Party ? He has been ineffective and has had no input except for undermining the former leader of the Scottish branch of his organisation so therefore surely he should stand down and leave his party in the hands of someone who would treat the whole party equally ?

labour & National Front

He is silently witnessing the fragmentation of the party he is supposed to be leading ?

Although I have no great regard for Johann Lamont as a politician I really believe that the Labour Party, particularly in Scotland, will come to thank her for exposing this whole debacle snd forcing them to face up to it and sort it out although I can’t see how installing Jim Murphy as Scottish “leader” will assist in any transformation ?

Of course he is silent, as just like Mr Sarwar on a recent TV show, he doesn’t know the names of any MSPs except his targetted Ms Lamont, so how could he phone anyone except his MPs in London.

Michael Portillo once said that in politics the people you had to fear the most were your closest colleagues. I suspect that Lamont has been Labour’s Aunt Sally right from the start making her an easy target for those who set out to demonise and misrepresent her. Some of her apparent gaffes could only be explained in those terms. Those who know her hold her in high regard as an intelligent principled woman.

buchcnan

There are some really horrible people in the Scottish branch of the Labour Party.

Copied from today’s Herald diary ( I hope I’m allowed to do this) Some of my coffee made it’s way on to the table when I read it. Famous film quotes altered to sum up the body-swerving goings on over standing for the Labour party leadership in Scotland. “I’m not Spartacus. He’s Spartacus.”

We’re still checking the rumour that the Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow, where Scottish Labour is holding its gala dinner tomorrow night, has specially ordered plastic cutlery for the occasion.

I do not think that Jim Murphy will be elected if he decides to stand. I feel it could be that at last those with the vote will remember the principles of their founding fathers. Jim Murphy certainly does not adhere to them. If I am wrong then I think it will hasten the demise of a once proud political party because there would be no place in it for Scots who uphold socialist values and there could be another flood of disillusioned people ready to join those who have already decided enough is enough and have defected to one of the SSP, the Greens, or the SNP.

We live in interesting times.

McTernan again

It seems to me that this is a healthy development for Scottish Labour that people who have the inside story are speaking out and telling the truth as they see it. Frankly, I’d be astonished if Scottish Labour could have its new leader in place and get away with pretending that none of this has happened, in the lead up to the Westminster and Holyrood elections. We would wish our political representatives of whatever hue to be trusted and trustworthy, capable and focused on the needs of Scotland, rather than engaged in an unseemly brawl and being an utter embarrassment to us. Where is their attention at the moment? On their own political careers, or the Smith Commission and Scotland’s future? And they dare to lecture Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP.

I would like to officially rule myself out of the running for Leader of the North Britain Labour party.

You would have to join it first, but maybe they are getting so desperate now that they will waive even that condition!

I also rule myself out, as I believe in doing an honest, decent days work for a fair pay and I look down on anyone who screws a fortune out of their expenses.

Well said Sir

 

trust

Does not matter who is the leader in a so called Scottish Labour, Labour, Torries and Dems are National Parties, controlled by MEP’s in Westminster, the people of Scotland are finally wakening to the fact and no matter how you dress them up or re-name any of these parties, In a nut shell, they are NOT Scottish Parties !! How can the people born or raised in Scotland possibly trust any of them, the only way to get the best for Scotland is to back a Party that represents only Scotland!!

For the first and only time in my life I’m in agreement with Ian Davidson. Mummy! I’m frightened. Cuddle me.

So Davidson doesn’t want Spud to be pseudo-leader in Scotland. Probably feart that if he tries to threaten him, Jim might lamp him one.

The disintegration of Labour goes on. I like how Sarwar was saying that, as interim leader, it was his job to help hold the Labour ‘family’ together, and work for the betterment of the party.

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Then someone suggested that if Murphy becomes Scottish leader, Sarwar should really give up the deputy leader post because it would be crazy to have both posts filled by Westminster MP’s, he says, ‘there’s no obstacle to two MPs emerging as leader and deputy of the Scottish Labour Party’. Just how inept, self-serving and stupid can you be?

This wasn’t mentioned on BBC Scotland early news today. Hmmm.

In light of Ms Lamont’s resignation and Mr Davidson’s allegation that the there was a whispering campaign against her and subsequent coup instigate by Mr Murphy I have a question for Mr Davidson. If this is in fact true the Labour MSP’s in Holyrood must have been aware for quite some time there was a major problem therefore what did he and indeed they do to support Ms Lamont. It is fine for Mr Davidson to point his finger but I put it to him that by taking no action they are all complicit in the whole affair. Did they in fact know if they sat back and did nothing their chance would come to lead the Labour Party in Scotland. However, given what Ms Lamont had to say about Westminster the job has become so toxic they have been hoisted by their own petard. I like many I’m sure would like to know the answer.

bainprinciple

So Murphy is now toast? Ah, but will he defy his own law and land jammie side up?

I suspect that many people from the SNP, the Tories and the Lib Dems will be rooting for Jim.

I suspect also that many now in the Labour party and the unions will be horrified by the prospect of Murphy becoming leader.

For if there is one person who can destroy Scottish Labour from within then it has to be Spud.

Backstabbing in the “People’s Party” – never!

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Pardon me if I find it hard to believe my eyes when I read of Ian Davidson riding to the rescue of a damsel in distress. It seems totally out of character. I suspect that, rather than defending a member of the fairer sex (is that phrase permitted these days?), he is using the alleged mistreatment of Ms Lamont as a smokescreen to advance a more personal agenda. I doubt whether anyone who has had the dubious pleasure of meeting Mr Davidson would include altruism in a list of his personal characteristics.

That’s true, among his other charms this ignoramus was accused of doing this; “The remarks from Mr Davidson were exposed by Dr Eileidh Whiteford and witnessed by other MPs and committee officials. Mr Davidson’s alleged threat to give Dr Whiteford “a doing”, and his subsequent – and bewildering – clarification that his remark was “not intended as a sexual threat” underscore the extent of persistent sexism rooted in political and parliamentary culture”. Yuk! Davidson is a very, very unlikely knight in shining armour.

Why do London Labour not appoint one of their own as a “Colonial Governor” for the Scottish party? It would be a nice well paid sinecure of a job, ruling from the South with no obligation to ever visit Scotland.

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Davidson is hoping for a coup of his own by getting his puppet Neil Findlay elected

If the labour party is a family its the Corleon family and Ian Davidson is Luca Brazi ,with Alistair Darling as Freido Corleon .

Things didn’t work out too well for them. There was something fishy in both cases as I recall. Now if life mimicked art…..

Davidson is no friend of lamont he has his own agenda

Glasgow South West Labour MP Ian Davidson puts the boot into his notional superior not once but twice in today’s papers. In the Daily Record he savages her proposals to devolve income tax to Scotland in the event of a No vote, echoing this site’s warnings that the price of such powers would be the ending of the Barnett Formula, costing Scotland billions of pounds without control over North Sea oil revenues to compensate. We welcome Mr Davidson’s confirmation of our analysis. But he wasn’t quite finished with Johann yet. Over in the Herald, Davidson, who lost the election to be Scottish Labour’s deputy leader in 2011 to Anas Sarwar, calls for the election to be re-run in the light of the UK party’s proposed changes to leadership election rules. As “deputy leader of Labour in Scotland” is an essentially meaningless role, we’re going to credit Ian Davidson with slightly higher motives than a second shot at securing the position for himself. (He is, after all, chairman of the Scottish Affairs Committee at Westminster, a rather loftier perch in the Labour hierarchy.)

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The only plausible reason for making the suggestion would therefore appear to be a thinly-veiled vote of no confidence in Johann Lamont’s stewardship of the Scottish branch. The new rules would almost certainly see her ejected, as she was elected primarily by the trade union vote whose influence would be diminished by Ed Miliband’s reforms, and we’re sure Mr Davidson knows that full well.”

Just reading that Kezia is interested in standing for the Deputy post when it isn’t up for grabs. My isn’t she learning young to jump on the band wagon when people already in posts are being forced out of them. Not a good sign from this “rising star” that she’s clearly up for doing that to Sarwar. Both the SNP and Labour have strong followings in the Scottish-Asian community. I think what is being done to Sarwar will not go down well in the section which backs Labour.

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This is the squad that told a pack of lies to the electorate about their true motives for maintaining the union. I hope they realise that there is an election coming up soon and we will not forget how treacherous these people are.

The decent labour people left need to dump this party their anti everything accept the London establishment, Lords in ermine what is there left to determine.

And still nothing from Mr Milliband he seems to care not one jot what is going on under his ‘leadership’. Or is it the case that it is ‘for the people of Scotland to decide’ to quote his chum Mr Cameron. Makes you wonder if he’ll turn up to tomorrow nights dinner or will he have an excuse not to face the people of Glasgow. I hear egg and had yer chips are on the menu.

I’m not a fan of Mr Davidson,but I think he’s got this one right

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Its all getting funnier as each day goes by..goodbye Unionists

London won’t allow Murphy to stand unless Miliband can stitch it up for him to win, in other words the London bosses want to know the results before the votes are cast,a bit like Scotland’s referendum.

Ian “bayonet the wounded” Davidson voicing criticism of Labour backstabbing!

Does anyone else see the hypocrisy in this?

He is the “King of the backstabbers” and was verbally abusive to Dr Whiteford some time back!

What a laugh! Typical Labour…”All mouth and trousers”!

Next time…Vote “Yes”!

Is it too early to feel smug about labour coming apart at the seams or would that be in bad taste, I’ll go for smug and live with it.

 

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Categories
2015 General Election

The 2017 General Election – Westminster and Its Acolyte Unionist Politicians In Scotland Do Truthiness Extremely Well – But Scots Are Wiser Now Than They Were In 2014

 

 

 

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In a few weeks the Scottish electorate will once more be asked to vote, this time electing individuals to serve as Members of Parliament at Westminster. The 2017 General Election presents Scots with an opportunity to ensure their voices are heard, listened to and acted upon at Westminster.

This has not been the case previously due to the structure of politics within the UK which markedly favoured political parties heavily influenced by UK agendas.

But Scotland, the “tail end Charlie” is now placed to bring about change.

 

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The unionist parties response will be harsh. Disinformation, lies, predictions of doom and disaster will feature in all sections of the media. Scots will need to absorb all of the nonsense then hit back sending 59 SNP MP’s down to London.

It is of no consequence to Scotland which of the Unionist parties forms the next UK government. Each is determined upon a course of austerity further increasing the misery of Scot’s.

A large body of SNP MP’s will provide balance ensuring options other than austerity are considered, which will not be the case otherwise.

 

 

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The key period of 2017, requires the sum of  £300 Billion, (borrowed by the Labour government in 2008) is to be paid back to the Rothschild’s World bank.

But monthly borrowing from the IMF and other sources by the Tory’s routinely exceeds £25 billion leaving only one source available to gather the money to repay the loan.

The UK taxpayer. The next few years will bring about austerity plus. Many sacred cows will be slaughtered upon the altar of need. Pensions, welfare, health, capital building projects, defence and other aspects of expenditure will be brutally cut.

The  return of £300 Billion is not negotiable. But even repaying the aforesaid loan will still leave the UK  £1.9 Trillion  in debt. Clearing this will take around 30 years.

What a legacy incompetent Unionist governments and bankers are passing onto our children.  But the richest 1% will remain outside the austerity agenda. The poor will get poorer and the rich get richer.

 

 

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It is also important to review events of the past few years so that the context of the 2017 General Election can be established.

The levels of incompetence of the last Unionist governments, in particular in the period 1997 – 2017 has been such to bring the UK to it’s knees financially and Scot’s do not need to accept this in the future.

 

Steve Bell 11.09.14

 
The 2014 Independence Referendum is a good place to start – The Better Together unionist campaign – Conduct of Alistair Darling and the Civil Service

Alistair Darling orchestrated (together with his Unionist Labour, Tory and Lib-Dem friends) a, “campaign of disinformation and fear” against the Scottish electorate for nearly 2 years ending September 2014.

The scale of deceit visited upon the Scottish nation by “Better Together” supported by the entire might of Westminster has unravelled over the months since the referendum.

 

Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood was awarded a knighthood the day before he took up his post

 

One of the most disappointing aspects was the key role of the supposedly unbiased Civil Service, (which has a charter expressly forbidding civil servants from participating in any political activities, including referendums)

But civil servant and Permanent Secretary at the Treasury, Sir Nick MacPherson quite blatantly abandoned any notion of impartiality in his supposedly unsolicited letter to the Chancellor of the Exchequer 6 months before the referendum advising against any monetary arrangement sharing sterling with an independent Scotland and in his later triumphant address at the inaugural meeting of the Strand Group on 19 January 2015.

 

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Recapping events; In presenting his speech, ‘The Treasury and the Union’, at the inaugural meeting of the Strand Group on 19 January 2015, MacPherson said that in cases, such as last September’s Scottish referendum, the rules of civil service impartiality, “do not apply”.

MacPherson also defended the significant role assisting the, “Better Together” campaign the Treasury played in the referendum stating that, “Her Majesty’s Treasury is by its nature a unionist institution.The clue is in the name.

” Responding to comments made by former cabinet secretary Lord O’Donnell, who congratulated the civil service for remaining independent throughout the referendum, MacPherson stressed that the civil service was not independent, as it served the government of the day.

 

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SNP Treasury spokesperson Stewart Hoise MP said: “These comments are astounding.This is a very serious admission and it begs the question – when will this UK government next abandon impartiality? “We expect the highest standards from senior civil servants.

With this admission, it is clear they have fallen short. I have written to Sir Jeremy Heywood demanding answers on under what circumstances it is acceptable for the rules of impartiality to be suspended?” (Note: waste of pen, ink and paper since Heywood orchestrated the entire campaign of disinformation, lies and blocking tactics.)

 

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He added: “The civil service code states that as a civil servant, you ‘are expected to carry out your role with dedication and a commitment to the civil service and its core values: integrity, honesty, objectivity and impartiality,’ which is ‘acting solely according to the merits of the case and serving equally well governments of different political persuasions.

At a time when the UK and Scottish Governments should be able to work in good faith on more powers, this raises serious questions about Scotland’s ability to have any confidence in the role of the Treasury.”

http://www.civilserviceworld.com/articles/news/nicholas-macpherson-under-fire-snp-over-%E2%80%9Castounding%E2%80%9D-comments-civil-service

 

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Trust me I saved the nation, (helped here and there by Gordon brown) says Darling

Now back to Alistair Darling and his damming display of utter incompetence as Chancellor of the Exchequer at the time of the banking crisis.

He claimed, in a television broadcast in the course of the referendum campaign the first he knew of any problems with the Royal Bank of Scotland etc. was when he received a telephone call, at home, watching television and the actions he then took had saved the nation.

He finished his selling pitch asking the Scottish public to trust Westminster and reject independence.

Which, bludgeoned by lies it subsequently did, by a margin so small it could only be attributed to, “fear” cold-heartedly instilled in the minds of the electorate.

 

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The Financial crisis of 2007/2008 – Did Alstair Darling, as he claimed really save the nation?

For more than a century the British Treasury was the most feared, powerful and respected of all government departments.

It wielded near-dictatorial powers, and its superbly trained officials were famed for their intellectual ferocity and rigour.

The tradition of Treasury excellence was of inestimable value to Britain, meaning that it was well equipped to cope with financial disasters such as the secondary banking collapse of the mid-1970s when dozens of small banks faced bankruptcy, or with Black Wednesday in 1992 when all looked lost as sterling was driven out of the Exchange Rate Mechanism.

 

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In 2008, however, Britain faced an economic and financial crisis on a scale far outweighing even the catastrophes of the 1970s and 1990s.

This time the Treasury was utterly unable to cope. Indeed, it faced the greatest crisis of confidence in its history.

Two glaring examples of Treasury ineptitude surfaced courtesy of a National Audit Office report into the banking crisis.

 

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The First was the revelation that during the crisis the Treasury paid no less than £150 million for Advice from Goldman Sachs.

Goldman Sachs, (operating as a gigantic global hedge fund) was subsequently exposed as one of the architects of the near collapse of the global economic system.

Goldman Sachs, had been heavily involved, since 2006 betting against the continued expansion of the American Sub-prime mortgage market whilst advising British banking institutions to buy into it.

When it did and it collapsed the company made a fortune from losses incurred by many of the UK’s banks. Ripped off twice, crazy.

The Treasury also spent an additional £80 million on consultancy fees with other large city firms relating to the bailouts of HBOS and the Royal Bank of Scotland.

 

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Even in recent years Goldman Sachs, (now converted to banking status) has attracted widespread criticism.

In 2009, it was described as “a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money”.

Compounding the injustice, the Con-Dem government, apparently having learned nothing from events of the past, contracted Goldman Sachs for a large fee, to provide advice in the matter of the sale of a large chunk of the Post Office.

It convinced ministers to sell the Royal Mail at the end of 2013 at a knock-down price losing the taxpayer more than £1 billion when its shares soared.

It later emerged that another arm of Goldman Sachs made up to £12 million through buying and selling the shares. What a rip off.

 

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In all previous financial crises it would have been unthinkable for the Treasury to contract out this kind of highly sensitive work to the private sector.

Apart from the obvious conflicts of interest involved, it would have been regarded as insulting to the highly trained Treasury officials whose job it is to sort out financial problems.

But such has been the degradation of Treasury competence and morale under Gordon Brown, Alistair Darling and the department’s supine civil servant, Permanent Secretary Nick MacPherson that it was considered routine to sub-contract out the work, which ought to have been meat and drink to Treasury mandarins.

 

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The National Audit Office report contained a second and equally devastating, example of Treasury ineptitude.

Even after the collapse of Lehman Brothers, Treasury officials were clueless about what was going on in financial markets.

It revealed that in the week before the near collapse of the Royal Bank of Scotland in October 2008, internal documentation prepared by the Treasury suggested that RBS’s capital position was “reasonably strong.”

In other words, even as late as October 2008, and therefore after the collapse of Lehman Brothers, Alistair Darling and his Treasury officials were clueless about what was going on in financial markets.

 

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This was quite simply terrifying – it showed that something had gone fundamentally wrong at the heart of British government.

But Treasury naivety and incompetence did not stop there. For the fact was that the Department had lost any notion of what was happening to the real economy.

The failure was on such a scale that it amounted to negligence – for what it showed was that Mr Darling had been in no position to make the hugely important economic judgements that the country desperately needed at a time of crisis.

But Alistair Darling was never forced to own up to the Treasury’s consistent failure to grip the nature and scale of the economic recession.

 

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In the aftershock of the subsequent deep recession, from 2008 – 2017 millions of people throughout the world have lost their jobs, homes, livelihood, families and in many cases their lives.

Protesters have been locked up as the powers of government have been deployed against them.

What is galling is that those who caused the crisis escaped any sanctions instead pocketing very large amounts of money, extending the two finger salute to anyone that might dare to complain.

 

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It was heartbreaking in September 2014 when 55% of Scots voted to remain with the rotten Westminster system of government.

But so long as there are Scot’s supporting retention of financial systems giving financial rewards and control to the richest 1% of society there is little hope for those most in need of assistance.

 

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Summary

For the purpose of briefing, taking as a starting point the budget statement of March 2008, (In retrospect a dangerously complacent event).

Neither Darling nor his Treasury officials showed even the remotest awareness that the UK was starting to plunge into the gravest economic recession since World War II.

The hapless Darling blithely – and inexcusably – predicted comfortable growth rates of 2 per cent or more for years ahead.

Incredibly Darling had still not woken up six months later, when he delivered a pre-budget statement in December 2008.

His statement, made in the wake of the global financial collapse, can only be described as an act of the purest fantasy.

Everything about it was wrong. He predicted that economic recovery would begin in the summer of 2009 and that the overall downturn in growth for the year would be limited to ‘much less than 1%.

But the IMF forecast that the British economy would contract by a mammoth 4.4 per cent in 2009.

The OECD, predicted an even more gloomy contraction rate of 4.7 per cent.

Both were correct. Darling was just as far out of his depth when he discussed future borrowing.

In the 2008 pre-budget report he predicted a shortfall of just £118 billion for the current financial year – the true figure was nearer £200 billion.

 

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The Treasury has consistently proven that it hasn’t the faintest idea of what is going on, either when it comes to the health of financial systems or the wider British economy.

So it is incapable of giving wise or even sensible policy advice, because the premise which would govern such advice has been shown to be fantastical and wholly incorrect.

The sorry truth is that, at a time when the UK faced the most desperate economic crisis in living memory, the Treasury was unable either to understand what was going on or to come up with an adequate response.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown was even more misleading.

In November 2008 he said ebulliently, “the Chancellor is leading the rest of the world taking us out of this recession.”

 

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There are two primary reasons for this disaster.

The first is the legacy of Gordon Brown’s ten-year period at the Treasury, which ended in July 2007.

Brown was certainly an intellectually dominant Chancellor and he made some sensible decisions, of which the granting of independence to the Bank of England was the most astute.

But his modus operandi proved to be a disaster.

Over a period of years, Brown’s suppression of original thought, and encouragement of of a tiny clique, destroyed the Treasury spirit.

He insisted on surrounding himself with a small, closed group of trusted cronies, such as his economic adviser, Ed Balls.

 

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Meanwhile, Treasury officials who did their constitutional duty giving impartial advice or telling the truth about Britain’s economic position were frozen out.

In some cases their careers were ruined. Over a period of years Brown’s suppression of original thought, and encouragement of a tiny clique, destroyed the Treasury esprit de corps.

By the time that Alistair Darling took over the Treasury in 2007, morale was at rock bottom and this once great national institution had been hollowed out to become a shadow of its former self.

 

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Matters were made worse by Darling’s sheer cowardice as Chancellor.

Senior Treasury officials reported he succumbed to pressure from Gordon Brown to project a more optimistic outlook than was justified by the facts.

Recently, however, it is said Darling had become more assertive and that there had been some bruising rows.

Nevertheless, a grave problem persisted. The Treasury was no longer ‘fit for purpose’, quoting the damning phrase once used by Cabinet Minister, John Reid about the Home Office.

This would be a matter of grave concern at any time, let alone a moment of grave economic crisis. So much damage inflicted upon a once great institution by New Labour.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1233368/PETER-OBORNE-A-rudderless-economy-great-treasury-thats-fit-purpose.html#ixzz3SQOh3c1W

 

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The Infamous Sun Editorial of Saturday 21 February 2015

According to Cameron there existed the prospect of Ed Miliband in Downing Street with Alex Salmond at the back door.  All reminiscent of the 2014 referendum campaign.

Remember Project Fear? Well this looks a lot like Project Fear Mark2. And there’ll be lots more of this before the polls open in June.

During the independence referendum the Tories used every trick in the book in a bid to sway voters. They won the day but getting more Scots to vote Tory? That looks a great deal tougher.

So,  the Westminster Tories, despite saying at the start that they would not participate in the referendum campaign actively orchestrated events from Downing Street, London..

The Sun is also implicated since despite knowing all about the, “campaign of fear” it did nothing to expose it to the public in Scotland preferring to remain quiet in support of the Unionist parties abandoning the very people, (the readership) that relied on it for honest reporting of events pertaining to the referendum.

Very sad. The Sun promised to fight for Scotland but when the chips were down  Murdoch was found wanting.

 

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Categories
2015 General Election

Lest We Forget – Blair’s Legacy – One Month Of War – Our Young Men Die – For What? – Remember Very Recent Past When You Vote For Your Children’s Future In 2015

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September 2 2006; Nimrod Crashes – British Servicemen killed in Afghanistan 14

Twelve RAF personnel, a Royal Marine and an Army soldier were on board the RAF Nimrod MR2 which came down in the southern province of Kandahar. The reconnaissance plane, based at RAF Kinloss in Scotland, belonged to the Nato-led force battling the Taleban. Officials said the incident appeared to be an accident. The 12 RAF personnel on board the were all based at Kinloss and from the Moray area, a spokesman from the base said. All next of kin have been informed.

Nato forces say the plane was supporting the Nato mission in the area. The pilot is believed to have radioed ground staff about a technical fault shortly before the aircraft came down. The crash brings the death toll of UK forces personnel in Afghanistan to 36 since the start of operations in November 2001. The crash is thought to be the biggest single loss of British troops in Iraq or Afghanistan since military operations began there in 2001.

Those who died were: Flight Lt Steven Johnson, Flt Lt Leigh Anthony Mitchelmore, Flt Lt Gareth Rodney Nicholas, Flt Lt Allan James Squires, Flt Lt Steven Swarbrick, Flt Sgt Gary Wayne Andrews, Flt Sgt Stephen Beattie, Flt Sgt Gerard Martin Bell and Flt Sgt Adrian Davies. Also named were Sergeant Benjamin James Knight, Sgt John Joseph Langton and Sgt Gary Paul Quilliam. The soldier who died was Lance Corporal Oliver Simon Dicketts from the Parachute Regiment and Royal Marine Joseph David Windall.

The crew reported a fire shortly before the crash and the Mail says the crash highlights concerns “over the poor standards of British military equipment”, quoting the RAF describing the plane as “old”. The Guardian says the fleet was due to be replaced more than five years ago.

Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Sir Glenn Torpy said a routine air-to-air refuelling had taken place just before a mayday call was received. Indications are a technical problem was linked to a blaze, he told Channel 4. “We have definitely got an early report that the pilot reported a technical problem connected with fire,” he said. The Nimrod was said to have completed routine mid-air refuelling at 20,000 ft (6,000 m). “It was obviously carrying out a surveillance operation over Afghanistan and all the indications from the circumstances, from the information that we have at the moment, are that it was technical malfunction,” the air chief marshal said.

Angus Robertson, the SNP MP for Moray, said: “This is tragic news for the families and friends of the service personnel at RAF Kinloss. “It brings home the terrible danger that our service personnel face and that they perform their duties with selflessness. “Our thoughts go out to everybody connected with the victims and RAF Kinloss at this time.”
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/5308622.stm

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September 4 2006; British soldiers killed in Iraq attack 4

Two British soldiers, Gunner Samuela Vanua and Gunner Stephen Wright of the 12 Regiment Royal Artillery died from injuries suffered in Monday’s explosion near the town of Ad Dayr, north of Basra in southern Iraq. Their patrol was targeted by a roadside bomb and small arms fire near the town of Ad Dayr at about 1300 local time. Another two soldiers were injured – one seriously – and have been taken to the Shaibah Logistics Base by helicopter for emergency medical treatment. The deaths bring the total number of UK soldiers killed in operations in Iraq since the 2003 conflict to 117. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5312344.stm

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September 4 2006; British soldier among Kabul bomb dead 4

A British soldier has been killed and a further three injured in a suspected suicide bombing on a Nato convoy in Kabul. The latest fatality brings the death toll of UK forces personnel in Afghanistan to 37 since the start of operations in November 2001. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5312356.stm

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September 4 2006; Kabul suicide bomber kills British soldier 2

A British soldier has been killed and another very seriously injured in a suicide bomb attack on a Nato convoy in the capital. An Afghan interior ministry spokesman told Reuters news agency the suicide bomber had rammed his car into the convoy. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/5311464.stm

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September 4 2006; Army ‘just’ coping, says general

The new head of the British Army warned that his soldiers can only “just” cope with the demands placed on them by ministers. General Sir Richard Dannatt, who took over from Sir Mike Jackson last week, said: “We are running hot, certainly running hot. “Can we cope? I pause. I say ‘just’.”

Foreign Office Minister Kim Howells said he did not think that the British Army was overstretched but other Nato countries should be doing more. He added: “There has got to be an effort right across Nato and not just concentrated on a certain number of countries like the UK and Canada.

Shadow Defence Minister Gerald Howarth, said the Tories had predicted that British troops would “get sucked into a very much more fierce counter insurgency operation”. However, Parliament was assured by John Reid, the then defence secretary, that this would not be the case, Mr Howarth told BBC Radio 4’s World at One.

Col Tim Collins, who commanded the First Battalion of the Royal Irish Regiment in the 2003 invasion of Iraq, said the British troops needed more resources. “We have to ensure our troops have sufficient fire power and numbers to ensure the best chance that our servicemen will achieve their mission, and with the lowest cost in lives. Cutting corners and saving money, the basest of all motives, may well cost lives and could spell disaster for the UK. “It’s a very dangerous environment, nothing like what was conceived when the force package was put together.”

Senior Conservative MP Sir Peter Tapsell told the BBC that British forces were involved in a battle which could not be won. The former soldier said: “Of course they’re overstretched and they’re doing a wonderful job in the circumstances but it really is childish nonsense to think that just adding a few thousand more troops from Nato countries or from anywhere else is going to do the trick. “We couldn’t do the job if we had a hundred thousand men there.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5311544.stm

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September 6 2006; British soldiers killed by Afghan mine 7

Two British soldiers have been killed and four others “very seriously injured” by a landmine in Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has said. They were part of a Nato-led security patrol which had strayed into an unmarked minefield. A seventh soldier received minor injuries in the incident in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan. The MoD said the injured were being treated at a military medical facility at the main British base in Helmand, Camp Bastion, and that it was too soon to establish exactly how the incident happened. A statement from the headquarters of the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) in Kabul confirmed seven soldiers were injured. “There was no contact with insurgents during the incident,” it said. “An extraction operation was successfully undertaken and the injured evacuated to an Isaf medical facility. “Sadly one soldier has since died of his wounds.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5320900.stm Later report stated Corporal Mark William Wright, 27, from Edinburgh, of the Parachute Regiment, died attempting to save the life of an injured paratrooper. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5325718.stm

September 25 2006; MoD dismisses Chinook death claim Follow up to previous report

The Ministry of Defence has dismissed claims a UK soldier died in Afghanistan because the helicopter rescuing him accidentally set off landmines. A report in the Sun newspaper said that the Chinook sent to help Corporal Mark Wright and his colleagues caused the explosions because of downdraft. However, an MoD spokesman said there was no evidence for the claims. Cpl Wright, 27, from Edinburgh, of the Parachute Regiment, died on 6 September in the Helmand province. An MoD spokesman said: “It is regrettable when soldiers take their view of an incident – especially one involving a death – to the media rather than their own chain of command.” The corporal died after a patrol strayed into an unmarked minefield. He was attempting to save the life of an injured paratrooper when he was killed in the incident in which five soldiers were injured, with three of them losing their legs. They had all been part of a Nato-led security patrol. It has been alleged that Cpl Wright specifically asked that a Chinook should not be sent and that the helicopter eventually left empty.

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September 9 2006; British soldier dies two days after shooting 1

The death of Lee Darren Thornton, 22, from Blackpool, who died on Thursday, was said to have “numbed” colleagues. The gunner served in 58 Battery, 12 Regiment Royal Artillery – the same unit that lost two soldiers on Monday. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/5326874.stm

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September 10 2006; Ex-army officer blasts Afghan campaign

Captain Leo Docherty was so unhappy with operations in Helmand province he quit the British Army last month. The campaign was “a textbook case of how to screw up a counter-insurgency” the ex-aide de camp to the commander of the UK taskforce told the Sunday Times. He also criticised a lack of equipment and tactics which he said had turned Afghans against British forces. “Having a big old fight is pointless and just making things worse, Now the ground has been lost and all we’re doing in places like Sangin is surviving” the former Scots Guardsman was quoted as saying.

He added: “All those people whose homes have been destroyed and sons killed are going to turn against the British. “It’s a pretty clear equation – if people are losing homes and poppy fields, they will go and fight. I certainly would.” Capt Docherty described the campaign as “grotesquely clumsy” and said the British were no different to US forces by bombing and strafing villages. He said when troops took the town of Sangin they did not have night-vision goggles and were so short of vehicles they had to borrow a pick-up truck. The British threw away the opportunity to win over locals by failing to carry out development work because of a lack of support, Capt Docherty added. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5332570.stm

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September 19 2006; Defence Secretary says Taleban fight ‘hard but winnable’

UK troops have been involved in heavy fighting with the Taleban after taking over from a US-led coalition in southern Afghanistan in July. This month 19 servicemen have lost their lives, including 14 who died when an RAF Nimrod reconnaissance aircraft crashed.

The threat posed by the Taleban in Afghanistan has been under-estimated, the UK defence secretary has admitted. Des Browne said the fight had been “even harder than we expected” but insisted Nato was pursuing a “noble cause” and its mission would succeed. Addressing the Royal United Services Institute, he urged other Nato members to respond to a call for 2,500 extra troops for Afghanistan. “Nato nations must decide whether to back their investment, re-affirm their original intent and send a clear signal that Nato as an alliance is strong and determined to see the task through,” Mr Browne said.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5358654.stm

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September 22 2006; British Army Army Major calls RAF support ‘useless’

The RAF are “utterly, utterly useless” in protecting troops on the ground in Afghanistan, a major with the main UK battle group says in a leaked e-mail. Major James Loden of 3 Para, based in the north of the southern province of Helmand, said more troops and helicopters were desperately needed. He said “plenty of tears” had followed Harrier incident when pilot ‘couldn’t identify the target’, fired two phosphorous rockets just missing our own compound so that we thought they were incoming RPGs [rocket-propelled grenades], and then strafed our perimeter missing the enemy by 200 metres.

The head of the British Army, General Sir Richard Dannatt, hit back, saying the RAF had performed “exceptionally”. “Irresponsible comments, based on a snapshot, are regrettable,” he added in a statement. The Ministry of Defence had earlier confirmed the e-mail was genuine. The “tears” Maj Loden refers to were “not tears of exhaustion or frustration”, a spokesman said. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/5371392.stm UK military deaths in Afghanistan and Iraq. Interactive presentation. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-10634102

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September 23 2006; Dead soldier’s emotional letter

The fiancee of a soldier killed in Iraq has released an emotional letter which he wrote with instructions for it to be opened only in the event of his death. Lee Darren Thornton, 22, from Blackpool, serving with, 58 Battery, 12 Regiment Royal Artillery, died two days after being hit on patrol in Basra on 5 September. In a letter to Helen O’Pray, 21, Gunner Thornton tells the “love of his life” she had “shown me what love is and what it feels like to be loved”.

The couple had planned to marry in August 2008. The letter, which the soldier had left with his fiancée in April with instructions she was only to open it should he die, says: “I know God put me and you on this earth to find each other, fall in love and show the rest of the world what true love really is. “I know this is going to sound sad but every night I spent away I had a photo of you on my headboard. “Each night I would go to bed, kiss my fingers then touch your face. I put the photo over my bed so you could look over me as I slept.”

I miss him dearly and this letter just shows how much I meant to him. “Well now it is my turn to look over you as you sleep and keep you safe in your dreams.” It tells how she was the “love of my life, girl of my dreams”, “my soul mate” and “my whole world” without whom “I am nothing”. It says she had “shown me what love is and what it feels like to be loved”. Miss O’Pray, a student, from Marton, Lancashire, told how she felt reading the letter. “There are no words to describe how I felt when I read the letter for the first time,” she said. “I loved him so much. He was kind, generous and everything you would want in a man.

Miss O’Pray told the Times newspaper she decided to make the letter’s contents public ahead of the service. He was the 118th member of the British armed forces to die while serving in Iraq since the conflict began in March 2003. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/5373094.stm

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September 23 2006; Thousands at city’s anti-war demo

Thousands of anti-war protesters have gathered in Manchester for what organisers said was “one of the biggest mobilisations outside London”. Demonstrators were protesting against government policies in the Middle East and nuclear weapons, on the eve of the Labour Party conference in the city. The theme was “Time To Go” – a call to get troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Police estimated 20,000 people took part. Stop The War Coalition had said it expected about 100,000. One of the organisers, Yasmin Ataullah of the British Muslim Initiative, told the BBC they put the figures of demonstrators at 40,000 or higher. “This is one of the biggest mobilisations outside London and I think there are tens of thousands here – 40 or 50,000 at least,” she said. The march began in Albert Square outside the city’s town hall, before heading down Lower Mosley Street, Deansgate, Market Street, Cross Street and back to Albert Square for a rally.

Some protesters lay down in the road as part of a “die-in” to symbolise the number of casualties in Iraq. Andrew Murray, chairman of the Stop The War Coalition, which helped organise the event, said: “The tens of thousands of people marching through Manchester represent the opinion of the majority of people in this country.” They held up banners which read “time to go” and “bring troops home”. Supt John O’Hare, public order commander at Greater Manchester Police, said: “We estimate that up to 20,000 protestors came to Manchester to take part in the ‘Stop the War’ march. “On behalf of GMP I would like to extend my thanks to the organisers and those who took part in today’s protest, for co-operating with us and behaving peacefully and lawfully.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/manchester/5373128.stm

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September 28 2006; One mother’s son

Every time Lesley Frost hears of casualties among UK soldiers, her heart freezes as her thoughts turn to her son Jay, a British Army officer, posted to Afghanistan. When I heard Jay was going to Afghanistan, my initial reaction was absolute panic. Although he hadn’t lived at home for the previous five years, the thought of him going so far away filled me with apprehension. He has always visited regularly and I suppose I’ve known he was just a few hours away if I needed him. He was home in Devon on leave for the week before he flew out. Most of this time was spent sorting out his kit and catching up with family and friends, but we also spent a lot of time talking about Afghanistan. We discussed the situation there, how he felt about going, how I felt about him going. We even had the dreaded conversation about what to do if the worst happened. This increased my anxiety but Jay remained calm, positive and at times excited. Above all, he was proud. Proud to be chosen to do the job he was going to do and proud to be serving his country.

Saying goodbye was the hardest part. I drove him to the airbase to catch a 6am flight. I stayed in the car while he took his kit inside. It was April, it was dark, it was cold and raining. As I watched all the other lads arriving, dressed in khaki camouflage uniforms and carrying huge amounts of kit, the enormity of what was happening hit me. Some were laughing and joking, some were sombre. I felt so proud as I watched them preparing to leave their families and serve their country. I knew they were about to experience conditions and circumstances the majority of us back home can never imagine. This triggered the tears I swore I would keep under control.

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Keeping in touch has been easier than I expected. His letters sometimes take up to three weeks to get here, and sometimes two or three arrive at once. He’s tried to make telephone contact once a week. Two weeks was the longest we went without hearing from him, but for us, the expression “no news is good news” really does apply. For the first few months we also got regular e-mails. These came to be eagerly anticipated by family and work colleagues. They were entertaining and newsy, complete with pictures and descriptions of his surroundings and experiences. True to form, they were filled with great wit and compassion.

News of the first British soldier to be killed in Afghanistan during my son’s tour came as a huge shock. He was home on compassionate leave at the time, and the thought of him going back into what I began to appreciate was a war zone made my blood run cold. The nagging doubt never goes until the name is confirmed – then it’s relief first, guilt, then grief again for those affected this time Every time I hear news that a British soldier has been killed, everything freezes, just for a minute. My heart begins to race, my legs take on a life of their own – or just fail completely – and a cold hollow feeling grows in the pit of my stomach. It seems like this goes on forever but I’m sure in reality, it’s just a moment or two. The logic clicks back in and I start thinking rationally again. Even when you’re pretty sure it’s not your son, the nagging doubt never goes until the name is confirmed. That’s when the next roller-coaster of emotion begins. Relief first, followed by guilt, followed by anger and then grief again. Grief for the soldier and for the relatives who are affected this time. I have mixed feelings about the news coverage of Afghanistan – too little is known about the situation, and we hear little about why British troops are there in the first place. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5376428.stm

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September 29 2006; UK majority ‘oppose Afghan fight’

Most people in the UK oppose British military operations in Afghanistan, a survey conducted for the BBC suggests. Only 31% support the decision to deploy 5,000 troops to fight the Taleban, while 53% of the population are against the move, according to the ICM poll.

Nato is extending its mission to cover the whole of the insurgency-hit nation. Meanwhile Defence Secretary Des Browne has rebuffed reports that commanders wanted soldiers withdrawn from Iraq to bolster the UK presence in Afghanistan. “My view, and military commanders share this view, is that we have a vital job to do in Iraq. We have a responsibility to the Iraqi people. “There is no division between us and military commanders about what we are doing at the moment,” Mr Browne told BBC Radio 4’s The World at One.

Currently Britain has nearly 5,000 troops in Afghanistan – including 3,600 in the violent Helmand province – with a further 900 on the way. A separate development will see the 12,000 US troops involved in Operation Enduring Freedom – a mission in Afghanistan which is separate to the Nato deployment – coming under Nato control. The decision will give the alliance a total of 32,000 soldiers.

Asked why British troops were fighting in Afghanistan, 63% said it was to help the Afghan government fight the Taleban. Some 71% believed it was part of the international fight against al-Qaeda, while 46% thought they were focusing on cutting the supply of drugs from the country. Mr Browne said he believed support for British military operations would increase “as we begin to see the results and improvements” of spreading the Nato force to all areas of Afghanistan. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/5393030.stm

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September 29 2006; Mistakes made in Iraq, says Straw

Former Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has described the current situation in Iraq as “dire”. Mr Straw, who held the job at the time the UK decided to take part in the 2003 war, said there were things he regretted about the campaign. Speaking on BBC One’s Question Time, he said “I think many mistakes were made after the military action – there is no question about it – by the United States administration. Why? Because they failed to follow the lead of Secretary (of State, Colin) Powell. “The State Department had put in a huge amount of effort to ensure there was a proper civilian administration put in straight away afterwards.”

Mr Straw, now Leader of the House of Commons, said some people would see the Iraq war as “Tony’s folly” but that was not a view he believed would stand “in time” about Prime Minister Tony Blair’s role. He said that while he felt the current situation in Iraq was “not satisfactory” he had expressed such a view before leaving the post. “I certainly said there were mistakes made,” he told Question Time. Mr Straw added that there were people in the US administration in 2003 who wanted to invade Iraq “in any event” but he did not believe President George W Bush was one of them. “The thing that people forget in this situation is the successful efforts Tony Blair made, which I played a part, to shift the American administration from that position to one where we took it to the United Nations,” he said. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/5390784.stm

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September 30 2006; West ‘will fail’ without Pakistan

Pakistan’s president has warned the West would be “brought to its knees” without his country’s co-operation in the so-called war on terror. “If we were not with you, you won’t manage anything,” said President Pervez Musharraf in a BBC Radio 4 interview. He said the Taleban, not al-Qaeda, was now the focus of the struggle against militancy in the region. “The greatest danger today is if the Taleban movement gets converted into a people’s movement,” he warned.

Earlier this week Tony Blair assured Gen Musharraf a leaked paper condemning Pakistan’s intelligence service did not reflect his government’s view. In the leaked report, a naval commander at the Ministry of Defence (MoD) claimed Pakistan’s intelligence service, ISI, had indirectly helped the Taleban and al-Qaeda. In the BBC interview Mr Musharraf rejected these claims and said ISI’s support was vital.

He also claims the US and Britain had a historic debt to pay as Pakistan had helped “win the Cold War” for the West. He argued that the West’s strategy in Afghanistan towards the end of the Cold War helped to create the conditions which led to al-Qaeda’s rise. President Musharraf said mujahideen fighters went into the area from all over the world and the West armed and trained the Taleban. He said Pakistan was then left “high and dry”. His comments develop arguments he has made over the past few days at meetings with US President George W Bush and Tony Blair and a speech given in Oxford.

Gen Musharraf said the Pakistani government’s aim in the country’s tribal border areas was to “wean the people away” from supporting the Taleban, pointing out that while al-Qaeda was mainly comprised of “foreigners”, the Taleban’s support was more locally based. He denied the suggestion that the tribal elders with whom the government has forged a recent agreement are a front for the Taleban. He said the tribal elders were the “only way” to establish support from the local population: “The army cannot get them on our side”.

Of the leaked MoD paper, British defence officials claimed it was written by a junior official, was unfinished and had not been seen by anyone who actually makes government policy. After two hours of talks on Thursday Downing Street said Gen Musharraf had accepted Mr Blair’s reassurances. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/5394278.stm

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Categories
2015 General Election

Menzies Campbell and Gordon Brown Planned to Usurp Scots By Any Means Preventing The SNP From Formng a Government

 

 

 

 

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March 2008: Sir Menzies Campbell And Gordon Brown’s Secret Talks On Pact To Deny SNP The Right To Govern Scotland

Brown held two secret meetings with Sir Menzies Campbell during the 2007 Scottish election campaign in an attempt to forge a new Labour-Liberal Democrat coalition and keep the SNP out of power.

Brown, the then Chancellor tried to get the agreement of the former Lib Dem leader for an anti-SNP coalition – even though neither had the authority to make such an agreement.

The secret meetings, held behind the backs of their respective Scottish parties and leaders, were disclosed in Sir Menzies’ recently released autobiography.

In Menzies Campbell: My Autobiography, Sir Ming described how he met Brown twice in Edinburgh during the election campaign – once on Easter Sunday and on election day itself, when it was clear that the SNP was ahead in the polls and heading for victory.

On both occasions, Brown asked for a new Labour-Lib Dem coalition as he did not want the SNP to control the Scottish Executive and its 30 billion budget.

Sir Ming told Brown that, although he was also against an SNP-led devolved administration, he could not decide coalition policy, as that was in the hands of the party’s Scottish leader, Nicol Stephen.

Jack McConnell, the then Scottish Labour leader, was not invited to the meetings.

Brown was operating without the knowledge or approval of the Scottish Labour leadership.

News that Brown was working behind the scenes to forge an anti-SNP coalition infuriated Nationalists and embarrassed Scottish Labour leaders, particularly as McConnell made it clear after the SNP won last year’s election that Alex Salmond would be given the chance to form a government.

 

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Sir Ming wrote that Brown first called him at home on Easter Sunday last year to ask for a discreet meeting.

He stated: “Like me, he was anxious about the possibility of the SNP governing in Scotland, our own backyard. Was there common ground between Labour and the Lib Dems to tackle the SNP together?

He made a number of suggestions. I told him I would have to discuss them with Nicol Stephen. “He then raised possibilities for a new coalition between the Lib Dems and Labour on the assumption that the two parties had enough seats jointly to form a government. ”

Sir Ming wrote that this was difficult for him as such decisions were for Mr Stephen.”

As the election campaign drew to a close, Brown got in touch again.

Sir Ming wrote:

“We met at the same discreet place as before. Throughout the campaign, the polls had put the SNP ahead of Labour. Was there scope for an arrangement between our parties?  What would be the consequences for Scotland and our parties if the SNP used the 30 billion Scottish Executive budget to build support for independence over the next few years?”

Sir Ming also explained how the Scottish Lib Dem leadership team met at his Edinburgh home the night after the SNP’s victory to eat pizza and decide what to do. “After two hours, we packed away our pizza boxes and any possibility of a coalition deal with the SNP.”

Sir Ming also revealed that both he and Tavish Scott, the Lib Dems’ election campaign manager, were against an SNP-Lib Dem coalition, but a deal with Labour was still a possibility.

Brown contacted Sir Ming the next day. Sir Ming wrote that he had to be “circumspect” as he was not supposed to “muscle in” on Scottish party affairs.

By the time Scott went on BBC Scotland’s Politics Show the following day, all forms of coalition had been ruled out for the Lib Dems, which is what he then announced.

 

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Brown was so desperate to keep Alex Salmond from being First Minister he tried to cut a deal to keep him out of power.

 

 

The 2007 Scottish General Election

The SNP won the Scottish General Election with 47 MSP’s to Labour’s 46.

Despite all the odds being stacked against them the SNP formed a minority Government and retained power for the full term of the parliament.

But Brown, assisted by his network of spies, the Civil Service and rumour mongers continued with his vindictive attacks on Alex Salmond and his government making life extremely difficult for the newly elected SNP government turning down meetings delaying and denying Scotland effective governance.

But due to the dogged and unstinting efforts of Alex Salmond a way forward was finally agreed through the establishment of a new “Joint Ministerial Committee” comprising the leaders of devolved administrations and representatives of the Westminster government.

Adding insult Brown insisted that the First minister of Wales should undertake responsibilty for agreeing the format and chairing the body at the first plenary session after which Jack Straw would take the chair at meetings.

What a control freak. No Gordon Brown Alex Salmond meetings.

 

 

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The 2015 General Election

Brown departed the scene but his legacy lived on in the newly elected leader of the Labour Party in Scotland.

Murphy had a history of doing deals within deals, (the referendum campaign gave truth to this). He would deal with the devil if needed to get a result.

But of note and some encouragement for Scots was the scale of his leadership victory.

Despite the unqualified backing of Miliband, the Labour Party Executive and all of the Scottish group of MP’s in Westminster he only managed to gain about 50% of the total vote.

With 50% of the labour Party in Scotland against him, including all Trades Unions Murphy will not find rich pickings on the left leaning membership of the party.

Noteworthy also was that the Cooperative sponsors who supported a number of Scottish MP’s. did not support Murphy’s election which was very damaging for Murpht and the labour Party.

The SNP sustains a Trades Union support group and many Labour supporters transferred their allegience to the SNP.

 

 

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