Friday, 27 October 2006

Livingston MP Shows True Sporting Colours

Well Jim Devine is showing his true sporting colours in a charity event tomorrow.

While local team Livingston are away in Dumfries against Queen of the South, he will be parading the SPL trophy currently held by his beloved Celtic at the Almondvale shopping centre, without earshot most Saturdays of the Livi drums.

While the event is to raise money for charity it is said that the local MP is encouraging teh support of non-local football teams within his own community. Livingston FC have for the 11 years of their existance been fighting an uphill battle to encourage local people to support the local team. The youngsters of West Lothian are the best hope for the local team to survive in the long term.

Expenses at Different Ends of Scale

The list of MPs expenses until the 31st March puts the two West Lothain MPs at different ends of the chart. Michael Connarty for Linlithgow and Falkirk East is the 8th Highest in Scotland 14th in the UK with £151,852, while Livingston's victor Jim Devine is 57th of the Scots with £92,297. Only the Speaker Michael Martin and the other, later By Election Willie Rennie claimed less than Devine.

Connarty however is not the most expensive MP in the Lothians that dubious honour is retained by Edinburgh South's Nigel Griffiths.

Although the evening news is worryingly telling us that Jim Devine is MP for Linlithgow. Is Connarty aware of this?


The break down of how the expenses were accrued for Connarty and Devine are now on just don't tell Jack Straw.

Connarty's expenses are up £11,476 on last year. While making savings in stationary, computers and staff travel. It is his incidental expenditure which has shot up by £9,461 or 51% on last year which is the bulk of his increase.

Extract From the Minutes

There was an article about De Loran sports cars in the motoring section in today's Scotsman. But clearly this was a car that was time travel complient as the following note from the future was just visible on the dashboard I have enlarged it for my readers benefit.

Minutes from 2007 AGM of the IRA Old Boys Assosiation

Hon. Life President Adams: (rose) Welcome to the 2007 AGM of the IRA Old Boys Association. I wish to express a vote of thanks to our speaker this evening and inspirational founder David.

Dave: Actually call me Dave.

Adams: Sorry Dave Cameron for agreeing to address us tonight for the Bobby Sand’s Memorial Lecture. I also would like to say how smart we all look in our new ties. Our crest of a Balaclava over crossed Kalasnikovs did cause a slight stir at the tie designers. But eventually the owner agreed providing we didn’t tell the Grand Master of the Orange Lodge Old Boys Association. I hand over to the Secretary for some announcements.

Secretary McGuinness: Thank you Gerry. Next Saturday we are having a Pimms and strawberry evening in Falls Park. We shall be gathering at the Divis Flats memorial end. A bouncy castle will be available to entertain your children on the slope overlooking the bowling green. Members who are supervising their children are asked to remember that the Old Boys Association condones throwing stones unto the green irrelevant of the opposition teams religious make up.

Member from the floor identity hidden by balaclava: (raises hand) But we’ve always done it.

McGuinness: As our speaker has shown in his words and actions in the last years, just because you’ve always done it doesn’t mean you keep on doing so. It’s all in the image, do whatever makes you popular. Now other events upcoming....

Thursday, 26 October 2006

It's a Family Affair

The election for Edinburgh South in next May's Holyrood election has taken another interesting twist. Already the former council leader Donald Anderson had been selected by Labour to take on Liberal Democrat MSP and former city councillor Mike Pringle again in the contest.

Now in as a replacement for Graham Sutherland, who stood down earlier in the year for personal reasons, is one of Mike Pringles own kinfolk has been selected to stand for the SNP. Robert Holland who has been selected is the son of the MSP's cousin.

Mr Holland has alrady surprised Tory voters in Edinburgh South by telling them that their vote is a wasted vote and only he can beat Labour and the Lib Dems. Fighting talk from the party that was in 4th place in 2003 and had an even poorer showing last May when then managed to lose half their votes in the larger Westminster constituency.

While Mr Holland head may be up in cloud cuckoo land, as not even his leader Alex Salmond has this seat on any list of potential gains, Edinburgh South is already gearing up to be another fight between Liberal Democrats and Labour. Although this time for a pleasent change the defender is not a Blair lackey.

Tackle Climate Change Take a Plane - Labour

Apparently the best way government guidelines tell us to tackle underused railways is to take a plane.

Are these planes going to stop at request stops along the line of the rail route? How are they going to tackle the stations in the Highlands or rural Wales which surely must be amongst those targeted? I mean it will be difficult to built airports next to every conceiveable station. That is before taking into account that taking off is the most carbon heavy point of a planes emmissions.

If there are not going to airports at every stop how are passengers going to get to their final destination? In some of these underused rail lines there is no realistic alternative to make the journey from Rannoch Station to Fort William being a prime example.

So not only is Tony Blair not prepared to set annual targets for cutting carbon emmissions (when he has them for everything else), he looks like adding to them non-sensically.

Wednesday, 25 October 2006

Not Quite a Rarity

Thanks to Peter Black for pointing out this one. So I find that there are only 163 people sharing my first name, 53rd most common, and last name, 572nd most common. Some of these American Stephen Glenns I have located in the past via google.

My Brother is rarer only 94 matchs. My nephews have 423 and 7 for their Old Testement fist names. My dad has 945 matchs and mum 25. However my sister-in-law is the rarest of the bunch with only 6 American's sharing her name dispite it being the same as a cartoon character but she was rarer under her maiden name with only 3 mathces.

My ex-fiancee who's birthday was yesterday always said she was a rarity 17 people match her name. If we'd have been married however she would have had only 1 American sharing her name with the correct spellings.
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Volunteer to be a Nuclear Dumping Ground

David Miliband the 'Wayne Rooney' of Tony Blair's cabinet want to sweep the issue of the waste created by nuclear power station under the carpet, or at least under the ground in a willing local authority.

Obviously after decades of consideration weighing this up this has been considered the safest option open to the government. That is clearly why they will be offering hte willing local authority a multi-million pound bribe, sorry, investment incentive to volunteer. Of course the officers of the local authority who agree to having the nuclear depository built in their area will propably be long out of office by the time it comes online, as it is expected to take 40 years to construct the at least 500 metre deep dumping ground. So obviously it will be as 'safe' as houses then.

The previous attempt to try and get a deep nuclear dumping site established was scraped in the 1980s due to public resistance. Of course then public awareness was far more worried of nuclear fallout coming from the sky if America and Russia got a little too heated.

Of course the best way to avoid having to dispose of nuclear waste is to avoid creating new nuclear power stations. There is plenty of options for other energys to be utilised that will reduce our countries carbon footprint and be safer and cleaner to use.

Tuesday, 24 October 2006

West Lothian Answer Revisited

Looks like I published rather than saved as draft earlier than I intended and a number of people have already read only a disjointed opening paragraph. So here is the full version for your consumption.

Iain Dale has thrown his hat into the ring over the West Lothian Question or more to the point the answer to the question. Following the backing of Canon Kenyon Wright for an English Constitutional Convention (ECC), similar to the one he chaired for Scotland it looks like a serious attempt to seek the West Lothian Answer.

The West Lothian Question is not a simple one to answer otherwise there would have been a definitive answer a long time ago. So the ECC may well be a way of finding the enigma that has been circulating since Tam Daylell first raised the issue. The ramifications are far reaching ie there should not be two levels of MPs at Westminster, we already have seen some friction about the two types of MSPs in Holyrood. The issue of who can vote on what issues is largely impacting on plitics both North and South of the border. Also the issue of funding and the Barnett formula is well overdue revisting.

So I would say now is probably a good time to ask for an ECC. Rather than glibbling throwing out policies like banning Scottish MPs for voting on English only matters at Westminster an ECC would look at all the ramifications in detail. It should have a remit to look at the issues that devolution has raised for England and have dialogue between the parties to reach the solutions.

I hope that if Iain Dale and other signatories of today's letter go into an ECC they will do so with open minds seeking the best answers rahter than merely rubberstamping of their own ideas. The letter already rules out options for regional assemblies for England which the ECC would have to look into to meet the fullest remit to see if it is beneficial for local accountability, responsibility over issues or not.

Monday, 23 October 2006

Yikes I'm a Nerd.

Considerably more so than Iain Dale but not quite as much as Joe Taylor.

I am nerdier than 86% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out!

Fearful Tactics by Scared Republicans

Having just acquired series seven of the West Wing I watched episode three 'Message of the Week' last night, in which Arnie Vinnick attempts to appeal to Matt Santos's latino base. While his attempt to shift his opponent unto ground he was avoiding for the fear of appearing to be a minority rather than mainstream candidate that is nothing compared to this.

Letters that have been sent out to 14,000 registered voters with Spanish surnames in Orange County California, saying that illegal immigrants cannot vote in Federal Elections and could face jail or deportation. These letters have been traced to a Republican candidate facing Loretta Sanchez, an Californian born Hispanic Democrat incumbant.

Now we all know the Republics are worried that latest polls show they are in danger of losing control of both Houses in next months midterms but this is a step too far. What make this worse is that ironically the Republican candidate, Tan Nguyen, arrived in America aged 8 after his parents fled the regime in Vietnam.

Friday, 20 October 2006

Mission Accomplished - Don't Go Lawrie

Lawrie Sanchez said when he took over as Northern Ireland football manager that he's love to overtake the Republics team in FIFA's world rankings. Well this week it was announced that hThis was mission accomplished.

Northern Ireland have risen 13 places to 45 while the Republic have slipped 6 places to 49. Now our next mission must surely be to built on the start to the European Championship Qualifiers and get to the Finals and then even if we fail to pick ourselves up again and aim for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. I hope that Lawrie stays with the team to accomplish missions 2 and 3. After all Tom Cruise made MI-3 did he not.

Wednesday, 18 October 2006

Is Oath a Barrier Too Far?

Yesterday's cancellation of talks between Ian Paisley and Gerry Adams is down to the ability of one man to say an oath.

Martin McGuinness is widely tipped as Sinn Féin's chosen candidate to become Deputy First Minister is power sharing can be agreed. However, he is a former commander in the IRA and their is a doubt over his ability to swear an oath in support of the police and rule of law should he take office.

While some press only mention that Peter Hain stepped in to postpone the meeting the Belfast Telegraph has no qualms about laying the blame on Paisley's door. Dr Paisley is quoted as saying that the Oath should be taken by both the First Minister and Deputy First Minister at the time they assume shadow responibilty upon their designation on 24 November.

However, a senior source in the Northern Ireland Office pointed out that this would appear contrary to what the DUP were striving for at the St. Andrew's talks. The DUP's stance during those talks was to avoid the appearance of actually taking up office on 24 November. Comparing this dilemma that Dr Paisley is creating the source added:

"It is analogous to an oath of office being taken by any MP. You don't take it when you are nominated or even when you are elected. You take the oath when you actually take up your seat."

So the question to Dr Paisley must be do you want an appearance of taking up office on 24 November or do you want to carry out what you negotiated for in Fife?

Moray MSP Caught in Green Lie

The SNP at their recent conference moved into the green arena and echoed Liberal Democrat calls for micro-generation of renewable energy.

However, the MSP for Moray decided he would back up these calls with action. He invited the press to his home in Forres to witness solar panels being installed on his home. He claimed in his press notice that he was the first MSP to install micro-renewable generators at home.

Whoops! He should have asked around a little more because without any fanfare Andrew Arbuckle the Liberal Democrat MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife has had them on his Fife cottage for 5 years. Also mentioned were two of the Green members also have had wind turbines constructed near their homes which supply the excess to the national grid.

So congratulations to Mr Lochhead for catching up, but no praise for trying to be a massive self publicist to boost the green credentials of a party playing catch up on action.

Monday, 16 October 2006

Lib Dem Blogging Connections Get Smaller

Neil Woollcoot is joking that he is out and about to stalk fellow Lib Dem Bloggers at least it would appear until he gets their picture taken. As a fellow Kingston University Alumni I joked that I would have to watch out at any Alumni events I might decide to drop down to then.

Neil has taken this in the good spirit it was intended. But it leads me to think how many other bloggers have I met since I started blogging.

Only at the weekend I bumped into Bernie Hughes for the first time at the Conference in Dunfermline. Earlier on this year I met and sat beside Will Howells at the leadership hustings. I also ran into Pink Dog when he was up 'running' the show at the Dunfermline by Election, I just am not saying what show. I've known Alex Cole-Hamilton before, during and after his all too brief but excellent sorjoin into blogsphere. As for Caron Lindsay well it's hard to avoid the other blogger in you local party especially when they acted as you agent in the General Election.

There may be more but for the moment I cannot think of actually meeting them. However, I'm not sure whether it is encouraging or scary when people you have known for years come up to you at conference and say that they read you blog. I take it to be the former as not one of them said a bad word about it.

Scottish Autumn Conference 2- What Happened

Well here is the agenda for this Autumns Scottish Liberal Democrat Conference, held in the Lib Dem held Westminster seat of Dunfermline and West Fife. Many of the delegates ahd been in the city at some point earlier in the year so Willie Rennie opened hte conference by thanking those of us who had come to make this a Lib Dem held seat. Something that Menzies Campbell and Nicol Stephen amongst others later added their thanks.

Basically the business of the day started with the motion on Tackling Serious Crime and Anti-Social Behaviour the admentment was the only issue causing any debate, also the fact that some crime was not covered was raised but did not affect support for the motion as a whole. In the end it passed unammended.

The second motion on Scotland's Burghs, Towns and Communities only had one speaker against the motion. Her view being that putting in another layer of governance was a backward step. Whereas others including myself had spoken about hte benfits to community councils etc on various of the levels that the motion laid out. This motion was clearly carried with the admentment taken on board.

Bright Future - A Vision For Scotland was the least controversial of all the debates of the day. As we discussed our pre-manifesto many of our brightest young people and candidates took to the podium to express they enthusiasm for various strands within the document. As this pre-manifesto is full of Liberal values it was passed unanimously.

The final motion of the day proved the most controversial. Two years ago at Autumn conference we had a tense debate about whether banning smoking in public places was a liberal action protecting the health of other or illiberal as it prevented freedom to a vast swathe of the population. In the end the ban was passed by a majority vote. This year we wer faced with the following motion:

Conference is well aware of the dangers of both smoking and passive smoking.

Conference notes that the law stipulating the minimum purchase age of 16 date back to 1937, a time when the dangers of smoking were unknown.

Conference therefore call upon the Scottish Executive to take steps to raise the Minimum age of Purchase of cigarettes in Scotland from 16-18 years.

Before I even turned up to conference I had difficulty with the last paragraph of the motion. We are proposing a pre-Manifesto which is giving young people more of a say in their own and their peers actions. Yet at the same time we were considering taking a choice, however bad it may be for them, away from them. During the day the feeling I was getting was that a number of others felt the same way I did.

Many of the speakers both for and against the motion mentioned that many people had already started smoking before the minimum purchase age anyway. So therefore raising the age restriction may not be the prime concern anyway but effectively managing the sale to, or purchase on behalf of, underage smokers may be a more valid motion.

Most of the speeches against the motion pointed out that this was different from the Smoking in Public Places debate as while the first affected others, this was a matter of personal choice. If there was a clapometer present I feel it would have been swiging towards defeating the motion more and more as the speech went on the the already quite busy room filled up more ready for the vote.

It was one of the final pleas in the summation that showed most how the room was considering voting. When the summator for the motion said that not one of the speakers against the motion spoke about lowering the age of alcohol purchase. Considering there is a dicothomy of two laws one that you cannot purchase alcohol before you are 18 but are allowed to drink it with a meal in a pub or restaurant from the age of 16. There were audible comments where I was sitting that this wasn't what the motion was about and mentioning the above.

So when it came to the vote this final motion of the day was defeated by a confortable majority.

Scottish Autumn Conference 1 - Quote of the Day

From the members there were some glorious quotes, the following are my subjective picksof the best.

Rod Ackland

My favourite was from Rod Ackland who during the debate on the Pre-Manifesto referred to a leader of a certain party as:

Wee Davie the lead singer of the Tony Blair tribute band Blue Labour

Honourable mention goes to the final comments of Kevin Lang against the defeated motion to increase the Age of Purchasing Cigarettes to 18:

All day we been talking about young people and giving them more responsibility. If we vote for this illiberal motion we're bloody hypocrites.

Friday, 13 October 2006

Target Date Set For Northern Irish Devolution

Reports of the Northern Irish Assembly may have been greatly exaggerated by the BBC earlier.

No party has yet rejected the Governments' plan for progress. They have until the 10 November to respond to the plan which gives a minimum of 14 days after that to appoint the First Ministe and Deputy First Minister.

If, and it is still a big if, this paln is accepted and followed the Assembly should be up and running again by the 26 March. I seem to remember one of the previous changes of devolution and direct rule happening around St. Patrick's Day as well, but I may be wrong.

Time is ticking for Ian Paisley and Gerry Adams then.

Footie Tonight

I'm off to Almondvale tonight to see my beloved Livi take on the Accies in the league. It is an experiment in Friday night football at the club to see if juniour club supporters and Old Firm, Hibs and Hearts supporting dads might accompany their children to a Livi game.

Anyway it means I'm able to see my team play and still attend the Scottish Lib Dem Conference on the same weekend which I wouldn't have been able to do otherwise, to thank you Pearse Flynn for chosing this weekend for this experiment. It also means that for this conference at least I'll be relaxed during the afternoon sessions as other delgates from rival teams may be fretting over their teams performance (in recent years some good friends have been supporters of relegation rivals).

DUP Says No! Again!

The headline on the BBC news site has just changed to DUP rejects Government plan. I expect the story will catch up soon.

Also nothing yet on the Ulster Unionists Blog of the talks.


3:00 pm
Headline has been reset to 'Hope Rise in NI Talks Agreement. Who knows what is going on? Such is the nature of Northern Irish politics.

3:19 pm The UUP blog has now said that while they expect to leace at 5:00pm anything is possible. They were just going into the plenary session to hear what the deal is laying out apparently. The BBC may have jumped the gun somewhat.

The Army Says No!

Well as I wrote yesterday the US Army said the situation in Iraq is too unstable to foresee a withdrawal of troops before 2010. Well British Army Cheif General Sir Richard Dannatt can tell them why. It's because we are there!.

This is most forthright statement from inside the allied forces military which says that far from being the peace makers in Iraq our troops are seen as occupiers and a cause of the tension, which will only continue the longer we stay.

So not only has he called for an immediate plan for an exit strategy, but he has also hinted that the way we went into Iraq, i.e. not invited, may be affecting how we are viewed in certain parts of the world.

President Bush wants us to stay until 2010. The British Army says no.

Thursday, 12 October 2006

Northern Irish Football 20 Years of Hurt. Is It Over?

England's Tormentor David Healy was at it again last night
The last time Northern Ireland qualified for a major football tournament finals was the 1986 World Cup. Which brought to an end legendary Pat Jennings career against the most worthy of opponents Brazil.

Who would have thought that in this international week that the best performers of the home nations would be Northern Ireland with a win last night against Latvia and a good away draw against Denmark. The last time Northern Ireland had such a good chance in international football Scotland were also riding high so the current parallel in performance must be a good omen.

2010 and All That

So now we know something about the withdrawal strategy from Iraq, 'It ain't gonna happen before 2010. The US Army have announced that new indications show the situation is too unstable to foresee an end to the 'war' (yes they used the word war) in the next four years, so they are going to have to maintain troop levels at least until them.

So Iraq War 2003-2010+? will mean that the US/UK alliance are gearing up to occupy Iraq for longer than Germany occupied Europe from 1939-1945. Strange that this new intelligence must come from the same sources that told Bush and Blair that the Iraqi regime had weapons of mass destruction. Well at least the country has them now even if they are in the hands of the occupying forces.

Wednesday, 11 October 2006

It's Good To Talk

Dr Paisley...Deal or No Deal

The seven parties that won seats in the Northern Irish Assembly are meeting for talks in St. Andrews for the rest of the week. This is probably the last change saloon for the Assmebly which has been in suspension since 14 October 2002.

The parties have until 24 November to come to an agreement on power-sharing or else the whole process will be mothballed. As this would be the third time that an attempted devolved Northern Irish assembly would fail these talks take on added importance.

Will there be progress this time? It is hard to tell howver the signs are looking up. Last week it was announced that the IRA are now incapable of carrying out a sustained campaign. Then earlier this week the Rev Dr Ian Paisley sat down to talk with the Roman Catholic Primate of Ireland Archbishop Sean Brady.

Two big questions need to be answered. Is it possible that Sinn Féin will accept the Northern Ireland Police Service. If they do, is Dr Paisley's DUP party ready to share power with Sinn Féin? If the answers to both questions is yes than this Friday could be even bigger news than the Friday that the Belfast Agreement was signed.

Romours that Noel Edmonds is heading to Fife with a van load of boxes waiting to ask his famous question are according to sources totally unfounded.

picture hattip to Brother's Bar

Saturday, 7 October 2006

Is Jack Straw a Head Gear Hypocrite?

Now before I start I must say Jack Straw is fully intitled to make a gaffe as much as the next man, we life in a country where there is freedom of speech. However, one of the reasons he gives for asking women to remove their veil is that he thought we lived in a society where watching facial expressions was important for contact between different people. Look over your shoulder on the right Jack, there on the doorstep of Downing Street is an example of a person who has to communicate with people in our society: a policeman. That picture is a graphic example that it is not possible for someone to see the full facial expression of the bobby on the beat the eyes,the window to the soul, can be obscured or in shadow as a result of the helmet.

The counterargument that has been put by some is that the people have the right to observe their own religious observances, without having to conform. However, the picture below is just one example of Jack Straw conforming to fit in with religious leaders. So he is not prepared to offend the believes and practices of others by not conforming to their expectations but he is prepared to cause possible offence by asking others to surrender theirs.

Picture from

Interestingly in conclusion when he famously visited a arab state on the brink of civil war in his previous job with a female dignatory from a special friend it was Jack who felt his head should be covered while Condi went bareheaded.

Picture hattip to Raw Carrot

Majority Support Green Taxes

According to today's Scotsman a survey by the BBC shows that 565 of people support green taxes even in air transport and motoring become more expensive.

Since Gordon Brown has been Chancellor green taxes have fallen from 9.3% to 8.3% of total UK taxation. He also talked of the threat to our planet from climate change at the recent Labour Conference but failed to say what he would do about it, so Brown isn't green.

'Dave' Cameron's NuTories the next large election his party faces is for the Scottish Parliament but looking up tax on their site brings not one mention of any plans for green taxation. Considering this is the time that the parties are starting to get thier points across for next may surely he needs to get his party talking about it, even if the policies are looking like being in place in the next century.

As for Alex Salmond's SNP they very publically slated the Liberal Democrat's tax proposals as soon as these were passed last month. Not recognising that the full proposals were redistributive and even the green taxes are not going to affect thepoor adversily.

Some people would argue that surely the Green party have addressed the issue of green taxation. They may well of but they do not seem prepared to tell people what they have planned. Indeed all they had to say in last years manifesto about taxation was:

The Greens will implement a tax system to encourage environmental sustainability and the reduction of material inequality. This will deliver real economic security. Taxation can and should be used to discourage social and environmental harm and promote equity between individuals.

Sadly this is like David Cameron lovely rhetoric but lacking in substantive ideas in how to implement it.

Therefore at present the 57% of the people of Scotland who support green taxes really only have one party that is prepared to say honestly what it is seeking to do, aiming to implement and prepared to stand for and that is the Liberal Democrats.


Friday, 6 October 2006

Pledge to Make Student Endowment History

In the Scottish version of today's Times comes the welcome news that the Scottish Liberal Democrats have released a policy paper that will do away with student endowments.

Many in the party have been campaigning to take this next step to do away with students having to pay for their education. However, the SNP spokesperson (unnamed) asks why haven't we done this earlier while we were part of the executive. Well the answer is simple policy making and passing has to be an evolution rather than a revelution you cannot change everything overnight and as the junior partners in a coalition we have had to take the steps we have been able to to get towards the goal we hold unto, maybe this is something that they will eventually realise if they get to be in a position of actually making legislation.

Thursday, 5 October 2006

Do the Tories Carbon Offset?

Found out that Iain Dale is saying that basically all the majors parties produce the same ammount of carbon emmsions from the surveys carried out at conference.

Now considering a number of LIbs Dems have already carried out an environemntal survey they possibly did not need to at conference. My results from last november were actually over three times better than Mr Dale's result. Also the Liberal Democrats offset the carbon emmisions produced at their conferences, although many of us do it a lot more, do the Conservatives do the same for their conference? Also an interesting comparison would be what percentage of the various parties actually carbon offsets their emmisions.

Editors note I know today is national poetry day but I could not find a easy way to put this into verse.

Limerick for Lord Advocate Presumtive

Carrying on the theme for poetry in this National Poetry Day annother little verse in honour of Elish Angiolini.

There was a top lawyer from Glasgow
Who Jack has now let all the world know
Is his choise to install
As the top Scottish lawyer of all
An' she's a lassie an' isnae a beau.

Calm...err Chameleon - A Song by Dave

Today in National Poetry Day so in honour of Dave Cameron's impersonation of Lord of the Rings star Sméagol/Gollum what better schizophrenic identity is more topical to sum up in poetry today. So here is a poetic take on chameleon Dave's words yesterday.

Read my lips and hear my voice
It's just a lot of vacant noice
I'll tell you who we want to be
But the route is shrouded in mystery.

Are we Blue or Green or Red?
You don't know I have said
We will not make promises we can't keep
We don't do anything that deep.

I'll talk and talk in platitudes
I'll talk about our attitudes
Put I'll avoid the policies
Hoping people miss our falicies.

So as I wind up this hot air
You wonder am I Cameron or Blair.
Are we Blue or Green or Red?
You don't know I have said.

Wednesday, 4 October 2006

First Liverpool, Then Scotland, Next...

Boris Johnson is at it again. First he insulted the people of a city Liverpool, now he is taking on a country, Scotland.

While his leader Dave Cameron is tring to revive the position of his party north of the border, Boris has stampeded in with a bulldozer that is likely to scupper Scottish Conservatives' slim hope of any breakthroughs next may. Boris Signled out two Lib Dem policies when he spoke at a fringe meeting.

"The Scots should not get free university education subsidised by us in England. They shouldn't get free nursing care."

The thing is Boris the people of Scotland are turning in droves to the party that came up with these policies and away from the party that governed Scotland disastorously through the 80s. Something that Dave had to apologise for recently.

Also Boris despite the fact that the Scottish Parliament has the power to increase taxes, it has yet to do so to meet these obligations and instead is just being prudent with the pursestrings and is providing public services. Considering the Tories actually cut health spending in their last year in government I'd be careful what you bring to the fore Boris.

As for a Scot not being good enough to be Prime Minister the Earl Home and the Earl of Aberdeen must be turning in their graves.

Tuesday, 3 October 2006

Scotland's Climate Shocker

I hope Professor Bjorn Lomborg has seen the headlines in today's Scotsman. The report from the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) shows what has already happened in Scotland. The summary on the front page of today's paper makes harrowing reading.

In the last 10 years Scoland has experienced:

A one degree celcius increase in temperatere

67% increase in rainfall

An increased occurance of landslides

And a 37% decline in Scotlands most vulnerable species.

One of the few positives to come from the report is that pollution has declined. At least Scotland is on target to cut carbon emmissions and is aiming for even higher goals. Unfortunately we cannot act unilaterally on this issue as climate change does not know or recognise national boundaries. The most important issue is that the worlds largest producer of carbon emmissions the USA is run by a former oil tycoon with very strong oil lobbyists pulling his strings.

Monday, 2 October 2006

Tories to Use Lunar Technology

Grandees at the Tory Party conference at Bournemouth were so impressed with possible Republican Presidential candidates John McCain speaking at their conference last night that they are looking at another American solution. There are rumours that they have called upon Peter Shann Ford, who recently discovered that Neil Armstrong did say the word 'a' in his famous speech when he stepped foot on the moon, to check Dave's speeches on taxes to see if the word cut was not actually inaudible to human ears.

Why is Dave Copying Willie?

Ok so the first WebCameron cast has Dave at the kitchen sink washing up. Now I have to own up I'm currently reading John Campbell's "Margaret Thatcher- The Grocer's Daugther" otherwise I'd have to admit I'm too young to remember this. But apparently to counter Mrs T's feminine side in the 1975 Tory Leadership contest Willie Whitelaw retaliated by making a broadcast showing him, guess where? Yes, that's right at the kitchen sink washing dishes. So is Dave still trying to live down his Jonathan Woss experience with Mrs T.

Mind you I think Dave is setting himself up for imitation from other politicians. You never know, we might have politicians attempting to cook in there next.

Let Me In I need to Save the Planet

Oh dear, it appears that David Cameron's Environment Guru A-Lististo Zac Goldsmith has been lying so low recently that he was not instantly recognised when he turn up at Bournemouth. According to The Time's conference diary Zac was unable to take his spot as a keynote speaker at the "Quality of Life" fringe event last night. He was still trying to negoiate the queues of people still waiting to gain their accreditation.

Scottish Blogging Round Up

Well it's finally happened there is a new Scottish Blogging Round Up thanks to CouriousHamster and doctorvee.

A number of fellow Lib Dems earned references and they referenced two of my stories from last week. This will make interesting reading over the next eight months in the run up to the elections and beyond.