Ohhhhh, Richard Leonard

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Yesterday, Scottish Labour bemoaned the fact that too many people working in Scotland are living beneath the £10 an hour so-called (by George Osborne) Living Wage.

Of course, that is true. Far too many people do work and yet live in poverty. And many people on Gideon’s Living Wage have to claim tax credits and other social security benefits.

It is a bad situation.

Mr Leonard appeared to say that he would give them all rises of up to £2,600 a year. All 500,000 of them. Generous man.

The trouble is that Minimum Wage legislation lies within the purview of the hated Tory government in London.

Now, I seem to recall that Minimum Wage legislation was something that the Scottish government asked to be devolved. And I also recall that Scottish Labour voted against. 

Any notion that the Tories would want to see poor Scots £2,6000 better off, at the expense of business owners, is rather far fetched.

Still, I suppose it makes a good headline for those who do not care to look beyond the headline soundbite.

Today, Our Richard was having a go at the NHS in Scotland.

According to Scottish Labour, it is failing people.

And to prove it, they put together a video. Mindful of a previous video where an NHS nurse was found in fact not to be an NHS nurse, they did indicate at the beginning of the video that parts had been played by actors. 

Now, our NHS isn’t perfect, I think we all know that. It takes too long to get an appointment with a doctor for starters, hospital food can be unappetising and in a couple of hospitals where the government’s lawyers couldn’t break the terms of contracts signed years ago, the parking charges are ridiculous. 

Of course, Brexit hasn’t helped with the situation. Many people working in the NHS are from Europe and, saddled with applications for residency permits, some after working here for a quarter of a century and more, have just given up and announced their return to the EU where they will be welcomed and treated like valued citizens.

But for all its faults, it is a good health service. Indeed, I think by most measures, it is the best in these islands and we should be rightly proud of it and the people who provide it at every level.

That said, if Labour can suggest ways that it can be improved, we would, I am sure, welcome their suggestions, wouldn’t we?

There’s a small fly in the ointment though… If we look for an example of how Labour runs a health service, we find that maybe their advice might not be that good.




Isn’t it about time, given the results of the latest Yougov poll of voting intentions for Westminster showing Labour reduced to one seat in Scotland (aye, old Union Jacket), for the annual branch office leadership contest?


Who this time… James Kelly?

22 thoughts on “Ohhhhh, Richard Leonard”

  1. The problem for the Ian Murrays of the British Labour party,is that they rely on voters who are essentially Tories to keep them in a job.
    When his constituents perceive his leaders,here and at Westminster as apparently representing Marxist revolutionary politics,they are going to be alarmed.
    However,they can probably be reassured by the fact that Tory England won’t allow them anywhere near the levers of government and they will continue to be a sideshow.
    Show is what Leonard is all about.
    Fire off a few nonsensical soundbites so that the press for the hard of thinking can publish it and bolster the anti Scottish self determination agenda.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. True. I’m sure that he’s bright enough to know that he can’t alter wages; that the ScotRail contract was awarded before Scotland had the power to nationalise the railways and that water is already a public company in Scotland.

      I read somewhere that Mr Murray is a very good constituency MP. And, of course, he is well known for being anti- Corbyn.


    1. Oh please PP let it be Kelly!

      Holyrood needs a good laugh these days.

      I think Kelly is the ONLY Labour M.S.P. who can out-Leonard Leonard these days so he MUST be shoe in for the next incumbent for the post of temporary branch office manager.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. There’s a wee bit of confusion here (probably thanks to Osbourne’s sleight-of-hand labelling of the minimum wage for those over 25 as the ‘National Living Wage’). The so-called National Living Wage is £7.83 per hour, and will rise to £8.21 per hour in April. This has no factual relationship with the actual living wage (as calculated by the Living Wage Foundation, based on the actual sum of money people need to live), which is £9 per hour, or £10.55 in London. The Scottish Socialist Party has been calling on a £10 per hour minimum wage for a considerable length of time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dave, I’m totally with the idea of at leas £10 per hour. Thanks for clarifying the difference.

      All these “benefits” that the government pays to people so that they can just afford to live, whilst they are working, are subsidies to companies to make huge profits, while not paying enough to live on.

      My point is, of course, that even were he to be elected to power, he wouldn’t have the right to change a wages policy in Scotland.

      His party thought that wages should be in the hands of a Tory government in England.


  3. Recently, I had a full hip replacement at Kirkcaldy Victoria Hospital. To say the staff were great is an understatement and that goes from the cleaners all the way through to the surgeon who carried out the operation and their professionalism was most reassuring. With regards to the food, I am a Muslim and as such my dietary needs were taken care of and for the quality of the food, it was very good with a really good choice on the menu. This was not the first time in recent years that I have had to go into hospital; I can’t say that it was an enjoyable experience as major surgery is never enjoyable; however, the standard of care was of a very high standard. I really do despair at the level of criticism that the Scottish National Health Service receives, it is in my view only used as a political football highlighting the lack of knowledge these critics know about the system. Yes they’re problems; show me any organisation that does not have difficulties, is there one? I have been unfortunate to have experienced health care in different parts of the world and it is my opinion that SNHS is one of the best I have encountered.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, I agree. Because health is such an emotive subject, no matter where you live it becomes a handy political football

      I think Leonard needs to remember that austerity is forced on Scotland (unnecessarily in my opinion, because it doesn’t work).

      It’s good to hear you say that, from personal experience, the SNHS is among the best in the world.

      I hope you have recovered from your surgery and are now planning your next marathon.

      🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Tris,

    Could you please stop putting out well considered articles?

    The depth of the shite that we are being told to believe, is beyond reason.

    This is a small atoll of sanity in a world that no longer values it.

    Just saying.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. The acting was terrible in the Labour broadcast. Overcooked pathos made it un-believable and inauthentic. It was so six feet under funny that it had me in stitches.
    I guess it was par for the course regarding Labour.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. He actually represents a tiny minority in a constituency that has, on the whole, rejected his ideas. Quite why Question Time would see him as a favoured guest is for them to explain and folk like us to contemplate.

        Just asking?

        I, for one, feel a tad cheated by BBC Question Time. I doubt I am alone in that.

        What say you?

        Liked by 1 person

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