Wednesday, 10 September 2008

Two Knights. So What?

We're Knights of the Round Table,
We dance when ere we're able,
We do routines and chorus scenes
With footwork impeccable.*

From Monty Phyton and the Holy Grail and Spamalot

Well it really takes the biscuit when Nats Jeff have to compare the knights heading up the respective Commission/Futures Trust on either side of the debate.

Jeff goes out of his way to disparage the achievement of Sir Kenneth Calman. Yes unlike Sir Angus Grossart he is not involved in the world of business or economics but that hardly means he is not qualified to pass a dispassionate eye over the future of our country. Sir Kenneth has been Chair of Cancer Research in Scotland, Chief Medical Officer both for the UK Dept of Health and here in Scotland as well as holding senior posts at both Durham and now Glasgow Universities. He's also currently President of the Boys Brigade.

Sir Angus is a lawyer turned merchant banker, now Vice Chairman of the Royal Bank of Scotland. Has been Chairman of the National Gallaries of Scotland, as well as being Chairman of the Fine Arts Society and Lyon and Turnbill auctioneers.

Both seem able to carry out carry out cognitive function at the highest level, both have experience of leadership, both have shown a diversity in interests. I don't think it does anyone justice to accuse someone appointed to chair a review that they may not agree with of being an inferior product to the one that they do. Not when the evidence is there that both have strengths.

*I have to admit before writing and researching this piece fully I'd used this quote before reading here "[Sir Angus's] interest in architecture has taken him far afield, from Crusader castles in Syria to the Inca ruins at Machu Picchu in Peru" pure coincidence I assure you.


  1. "Jeff goes out of his way to disparage the achievement of Sir Kenneth Calman. "

    Stephen, that's a new low. Once again, I have no earthly idea what you're on about.

    Also, did you swallow a poetry book recently?

  2. If I hit a new low Jeff can you provide a boost up from down below. After these comments:

    "Our Sir's better than your Sir"

    "the SNP are seeing your Kenneth Calman and raising the bet, big time"

    These comments are not knocking Sir Kenneth Calman how exactly Jeff? Very schoolboyish playground approach in the first and the second is comparing say a Roger Federer in one field with a Tiger Woods in another.

    Then you also said:

    "if Angus Grossart backs the Scottish Futures Trust, the combined carping ... is going to look very empty indeed"

    Bit much especially in light of the fact that you seem to think 10,000 counter-opinions are not a "blow", yet one man decides to head up something and all is rosy.

    I'll hold you to the same standard I'd hold anyone to Jeff, As you know I'll agree were agreement is to be had, but I'm no quiet nodding dog.

    As for swallowing a book of poetry Jeff I have no need to. I've churned out enough of the stuff over the years to fill several volumes thank you.

  3. A poet and you know it!

    But oh Stephen, anyone who has any semblance of a sense of humour would have spotted that I was jokingly referring to the current craze of appointing a Sir to your commission/trust to give it some credibility.

    I am sure you're the only person who read my blog who actually thought I was saying Sir Angus was better than Sir Ken like one would in a game of Top Trumps.

    I am sure they are both thoroughly lovely and capable men as, indeed, you are yourself.

    It might pay to try not being so serious all the time though.

  4. Well read my post on the big Bang to see just how chilled out I can be. ;)

    As for Top Trumps didn't I see some sort of promo on TV the other night for some sort of Top Trump style programme.