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Showing posts with label Willie Rennie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Willie Rennie. Show all posts

Monday, 26 March 2012

Cash for access and influence–don’t forget the LibDems–the ‘squeaky clean’ party!


This is the party most distrusted by the electorate, reduced to a pathetic rump in Holyrood by the Scottish electorate last May, and who would be obliterated by the UK electorate if the Coalition fell tomorrow.

But they see themselves as squeaky clean …

This is the party that accepted “in good faith” a £2.4m donation from a convicted fraudster, Michael Brown, which they refused to repay to the people who had been defrauded when the facts became known because “the money was already spent”. (BBC report)

But they see themselves as squeaky clean …

Here they are at their conference in September 2011, allowing access for cash - £800 a head for lunch – with influential LibDem ministers to tobacco companies and God know who else. Here they are trying to prevent Channel Four News reporter Michael Crick from gaining access for truth.

Meanwhile, Tavish Scott bleated bitterly last year about how his party, not to mention his career, was blighted by the LibDem pact with the Tories. Tavish, throughout his feeble leadership of the Scottish LibDems conspicuously failed to distance himself from the UK party because of his pro-Union and virulently anti-SNP views. He now favours remaining in the UK for Orkney and Shetland - or UDI from an independent Scotland.

We have a LibDem, Danny Alexander as a member of the notorious Coalition sofa government cabal, the Quad, and Michael Moore, a LibDem, as Scottish Colonial Governor – and in Scotland, Willie Rennie

They are all – needless to say – deeply committed to remaining within the UK, and implacably hostile to their country’s independence …

THE TORY CASH FOR ACCESS SCANDAL






ALEX SALMOND - Letter to DAVID CAMERON


"Yesterday’s Sunday Times report regarding Peter Cruddas is a matter of substantial public concern.

One important aspect is that Mr Cruddas is reported to have discussed the issue of Scottish independence with you, in somewhat pejorative terms. I would like to know directly from you the details of this discussion.

The paper reports that Mr Cruddas personally was a major donor to the “No to AV” campaign, reportedly funding the campaign to the tune of £1.2 million.

You will also have noted that Mr Cruddas was willing to discuss accepting political donations with persons purporting to represent an overseas wealth fund, which of course is prohibited by law from making a donation to a political party in the United Kingdom.

As you know, the Scottish Government’s proposals for a referendum on independence in autumn 2014 set out clear rules about donations to the campaigning groups for the referendum. These rules are based on established electoral law, and our consultation document proposes that they would be rigorously enforced by the Electoral Commission.

Given the revelations in the Sunday Times and subsequent resignation of Mr Cruddas, I am asking you to agree that there is now even more reason to ensure that the terms governing the conduct of the referendum are determined by the Scottish Parliament, and are not dictated by Westminster – a threat that was discussed by senior Conservative Party representatives as recently as last weekend at your Scottish Party conference.

You will realise the importance we attach to holding a referendum which is beyond reproach and free of the sort of impropriety which is so clearly pointed to in the Sunday Times report."

Friday, 16 March 2012

Afghanistan on Question Time - Humza Yousaf, Willie Rennie and audience comments

As is almost always the case on Question Time, the audience has the heart of the question. Janet Street Porter was irrelevant, Ruth Davidson was - well, a Tory - and Frank Field was stuck with the Blair/Brown/Labour legacy.

The insidious and contemptible argument that we should stay to justify the 404 British service death and 5000 injured was trotted out, as it always is. Kill more in an unwinnable 'war' to 'justify' the needless, criminal sacrifice of the past.

The wife of the serving officer said it all, lucidly and with calm dignity and deep regret - we are achieving nothing in Afghanistan.

And what exactly did Willie Rennie mean by  his "Even Humza agrees it was the right thing to do at the start" remark. Even Humza?



MY COMMENTS (incorporating material from a 2009 blog)

America and Britain’s original case for invading Afghanistan was to remove the Taliban and the training camps for terrorists. That was achieved in the first year.

Although most commentators and political parties supported the initial invasion and its rationale, I argued - and still do - that we are there, as Obama is there, as the 43 countries of the coalition are there, because of a profoundly mistaken instinct by a right-wing group of American Republicans and their puppet, George W. Bush, to lash out at something after the tragedy of 9/11 and the appalling loss of life and blow to American prestige.

After that first year, the UK’s rationale for remaining rested on a lie - that we are there to prevent terrorism threatening Britain. It still rests on that lie. The Afghanistan war brought terrorism to Britain – it politicised a whole generation of young Asians. The locus of terror has long shifted to Pakistan.

We are there because enormous profits are yielded to armaments manufacturers, and to contractors of services to the military, and because a shadowy enemy, a perpetual threat, and inducing paranoia in the population have always been a prime recourse of failing regimes.

Britain is there, and the coalition is there because Europe does not yet have the cohesion to stand up to a flawed American foreign policy on the Middle East and the Israel/Palestine question.

We are there because Pakistan worries us deeply, because it is an unstable ally with a nuclear capacity, with a religion and a culture the West has never begun to understand, and it, together with Israel, forces us to recognise the weaknesses of the West's self-serving nuclear policy - committed to retaining its own weapons of mass destruction while engaged in a vain attempt to stop others from following the same route.

The vacuum at the heart of the UK position was starkly exposed by the threat to pull out if the Karzai regime did not root out corruption. Leaving aside the inconvenient fact that a significant proportion of the corruption is induced by the activities of foreign contractors, something made clear in an aside by a commentator from the region last night, what this says in effect is this -

We are are here to prevent Afghanistan from being a seed bed for attacks on Britain, but if you - the 'democratic' puppet government that we have put in place - don't behave, we will abandon the whole misconceived enterprise and let the region revert to where it was before, thereby allowing the threat to Britain re-establish its potency.”

The UK’s behaviour over Afghanistan reminds me of the behaviour of directors and senior managers in a private company or large public enterprise who have mistakenly committed themselves to a project or policy that is manifestly going to fail. A marked distaste for re-examining the fundamental premises of the enterprise emerges, and a growing hostility to critics however rational.

The old accountant's motto, that sunk costs are irrelevant in reviewing a flawed project, is speedily abandoned, and the accrued costs to date, i.e. the tragic deaths and serious injuries, are used as a justification for continuing.

It's like the gambler's fallacy at roulette - that if you keep doubling your bets, you must win eventually, a fallacy that ignores the sum of what has already been lost, ignores the possibility to long runs of bad luck, and and ignores the exponential growth in losses of doubling up.

Those opposed to the lunatic project are increasingly characterised as enemies, not as loyal employees trying to pull their company back from disaster.

We are still there because of US and UK fear of loss of face when we withdraw, and both countries are prepared to let soldiers and civilian non-combatants to die to save their political faces.


Wednesday, 21 September 2011

LibDemmery

Michael Moore, Colonial Governor and representative of nothing but a failed and discredited political party, will attack the SNP today. We don’t need to know anything else, because he and his party don’t matter to Scotland or Scots. I thought of saying more, but Ian Bell has said most of it today in the Herald, as have others, including letter writers.

I occasionally get correspondents saying that I don’t have enough discussion and comment on my blog, and that this is a factor of my moderation constraints, .i.e. Google or other ID required for comment. No such requirement exists on my YouTube channel, TAofMoridura, and that’s YouTube’s lack of constraint, not mine. So a lively debate rages on some of my YouTube videos, sometimes for months or even years after they have been posted, and believe me, there’s a helluva lot of work involved screening out – by pre-moderation - the incoherent, incomprehensible, obscene, obsessive, libellous, repetitive, irrelevant and sometimes just plain vicious comments that come in my inbox each day. I can of course, block all comment, but it is something I’m reluctant to do because there’s so much good stuff.

I posted a video clip of Michael Moore three months ago. The comments keep coming, and I have screened out at least as many – from all sides of the argument – that were unacceptable in any civilised discourse. As for my older clip on David Starkey and Brian Cox – well, I could fill a week’s blogs with those …



 

  • A lot of postulation and conjecture in this unionist litany

    Alex462047 6 hours ago

  • A parcel of rogues in a nation.

    Does anyone in Scotland still vote for the Lib Dems?

    Thumbs up for Scottish independence.

    scotsskier 3 weeks ago

  • Michael Moore, like most unionists, is an enemy to Scotland.

    segano1 1 month ago

  • Michael Moore is better known as The Secretary of State AGAINST Scotland, he just stands by while his Tory Hatchett man colleague Danny Alexander lays into Scotland. SNP, SDA, Solidarity, SSP and Scottish Greens are all working to free us from the shackles of this union, good on them.

    iamtehmunkie 1 month ago

  • Inertia in people is much the same as inertia in objects, as the body in motion will tend to stay in motion, the old thought process and habits will continue without a good reason, or a “safe” way to ensure change.

    segano1 1 month ago

  • The SNP argument is that it’s just a natural step to take. The Unionists argue it’s a chasm. The conservative voter, for the most part, will not step. That is a fundamental definition of conservatism. The Union argument is more fear and scare tactics, these will often work with the more conservative voter.

    segano1 1 month ago

  • Support on union is based on negativity simply because there's not much positives for Scotland to stay in the union from a Scottish perspective. Scotland paying it's neighbours to speak on it's behalf while claiming in public that Scotland contributes nothing and is a 'subsidy junkie' nation.

    Britain is an ailing bankrupt state.

    Time this rancid Union parasite was removed once and for all from the body of Scotland. Only with this parasite cleansed from Scotland, can we as a nation succeed.

    segano1 2 months ago

  • Maddening! Westminsters approach each week, each year, each decade, is to tell Scotland that we're getting an, unfairly, good deal from the union, that our economy is not strong enough to support ourselves and to promise that London is on the case to make that economy stronger in the future. Within the UK Scotland will never be able or allowed to fulfill it's potential and all the double talk from London won't change that.

    Westminster also allows our most popular party to be called neo fascist

    mesmiths 2 months ago

  • A Lib Dumb and a Tory as colonial governors for Scotland, could you have any other two figures who are less representative of the Scottish people?

    BonnieBlueFlag1314 2 months ago

  • RBS Successful = British. RBS Unsuccessful = Scottish. Bailing out a bank with more English employees than Scottish was a wise move for the UK. Making themselves sound so generous to Scotland for doing it, is simply ludicrous.

    dauntless111 2 months ago



  • Tuesday, 20 September 2011

    Cash for access – the LibDems are at it again …

    Yesterday, a trio of LibDems attacked the SNP, they were at it again in their conference yesterday at Birmingham and Michael Moore will be at it again today. This is the party most distrusted by the electorate, reduced to a pathetic rump in Holyrood by the Scottish electorate last May, and who would be obliterated by the UK electorate if the Coalition fell tomorrow.

    But they see themselves as squeaky clean …



    This is the party that accepted “in good faith” a £2.4m donation from a convicted fraudster, Michael Brown, which they refused to repay to the people who had been defrauded when the facts became known because “the money was already spent”. BBC report

    But they see themselves as squeaky clean …

    Here they are again yesterday, at their conference, allowing access for cash - £800 a head for lunch – with influential LibDem ministers to tobacco companies and God know who else. Here they are trying to prevent Channel Four News reporter Michael Crick from gaining access for truth.

    Meanwhile, Tavish Scott bleats bitterly about how his party, not to mention his career, was blighted by the LibDem pact with the Tories. Tavish, throughout his feeble leadership of the Scottish LibDems conspicuously failed to distance himself from the UK party because of his pro-Union and virulently anti-SNP views.

    And now we have a LibDem, Danny Alexander as a member of the notorious Coalition sofa government cabal, the Quad, and Michael Moore, a LibDem, as Scottish Colonial Governor – and in Scotland, Willie Rennie, who is not only squeaky clean, but squeaky …

    What have you got to say about all this, Willie?

    Long Live the Union? Long Live the Dirty Money?

    Friday, 17 June 2011

    The UK Supreme Court–FMQs 16th June 2011 - Holyrood

    Given the highly biased press and media reports of these exchanges at FMQs yesterday (16th June 2011) these complete clips offer an opportunity for a more balanced appraisal of the full exchanges. Holyrood FMQs offers a curious spectacle these days, that of two caretaker opposition leaders and one brand new opposition leader representing two failed parties and one dying party (Labour) attempting to hold a First Minister with a new and powerfully enhanced mandate to account.


    POSTSCRIPT
    I'm glad the Scotsman has recently followed my practice of actually timing question and answers at FMQs, instead of simply making unsupported and usually inaccurate statements that the First Minister was hogging the floor.
    The paper selectively offers a couple of times today: let me help them out with the total Supreme Court exchanges -


    Annabel Goldie 2m 19s
    Iain Gray: 3m 57s
    Willie Rennie: 1m 38s
    Alex Salmond 10m 30s

    Total question times: 7m 54s, total answer times: 10m 30s

    Percentages of total of UK Supreme Court exchanges:

    Questions 42.93%, Answers 57.07%