STRONG AND STABLE, STRONG AND STABLE, STR….

a SECOND

OK. So according to Dean, the Daily Express and even some of the real press along with the BBC, the Tories won a victory on Thursday, and Scotland said no to independence, presumably preferring to be “strong and stable” with Brexit May and her chaotic bunch of clueless ministers. (Any bets on who will have to go after her election win?)

But, to be fair, the Tories did very well by their standards in Scotland. Since the days of Thatcher, they have been poison here. Playing down the “Conservative” name, the utter chaos of the Labour Party (for which the priority seems to be internecine warfare and voting along with whatever the government comes up with) and failing to talk about any actual policies except SNP BAAAAAD, have played well for them.

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They made the election about the Union and about being “strong and stable”, whatever that actually means. (Seriously does anyone see Theresa May as being either strong or stable, or indeed anything other than a rather silly woman who sells weapons to Saudi, while ranting that NT left “Easter” out of their egg competition?) They made it about visceral hatred of the SNP, of independence, of the Greens, of Scotland as anything other than a region… So much so that none of us has any idea what their policies for local government are, although I’m pretty sure we can guess. As they don’t actually control any councils, at least we are sure that whatever they stand for will be tempered by decency and humanity.

And to an extent, it worked for them.

 

But the truth, of course, is that the SNP had a great night.

1.  The SNP won the election nationally, with the largest number of councillors and the highest vote share of any party.
2.  They’ve won more councillors, with 431 elected compared to 425 in 2012.
3.  The SNP is now the largest group in 16 of 32 councils.
4.  The SNP has ended almost 40 years of Labour control in Glasgow, becoming the largest party in the city for the first time.
5.  The SNP are now the largest party in Scotland’s four largest cities: Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee.
a tory brit

And so now we move to the general election which in England they will fight on “strong and stable” leadership as they come out of Europe leaving chaos in their wake. In Scotland, they will fight on a “strong and stable” leadership for the union.

I’m not expecting to hear much about how some police officers and nurses are reliant upon Food Banks to feed their families, the sale of the NHS to Virgin, Tory electoral fraud, 40,000 deaths caused by pollution, war in the Middle East, abysmal trains, potholed roads, reduced pension, rising prices, thousands of deaths as a result of corruption in ATOS and their likes, sanctions, black hole in the incompetent Defence Minister’s budget, Mrs May’s closest, well, only,  friends, Trump, Erdogan, Netanyahu, and Salman… etc, etc.

aTory brit

Oh dear, no.

Oh, and this is interesting…

THE SOLUTION FOR ALL THESE SNPers

asnp

Interesting, Alex.  I’ve looked for your profile on Facebook, but I can’t find it and so am unable to answer you directly. But, I want to help you out here so let me try to put your mind at rest.

“SNPers” don’t really take the debate away from the real issues, well no more than other voters do anyway. Because you see, we talk about things that are happening in our bit of what you call Great Britain. That’s Scotland. (Incidentally, Great Britain is the name of the big island comprising Scotland, Wales and England (along with Cornwall). Great being a translation from the French of “Grande” and Britain from “Bretagne” (so Large Brittany).

Actually, your country is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.  (At least for the moment.) Even if you dislike the Irish as much as you appear to dislike the Scots, you just can’t dismiss them completely.

So, all that stuff comprises understandable errors in your statement which we are pleased to be able to correct.

The second paragraph, though, is a little different.makes you sound like a raving Nazi nutter. Rounding up people and executing their leaders makes you appear demented, and we’re not really qualified to deal with that.

It makes you sound like a raving Nazi nutter. Rounding up people and executing their leaders makes you appear demented, and we’re not really qualified to deal with that.

Our advice would be to seek help from a professional.

Just in case you come across this post (and we hope you do) we’d love to know to which political party you feel an allegiance (although we think we can probably guess!).

SOPPY SUNDAY

n arbroathN bees like aliumsn beinn dearg morN cougarn cuten dolphinn donkN hallgrimskirkjan horseN icelandn insecyn leaf hoppern malcolmn MooooooN orann pandan metalic leaf beetleN Italian skyn donkeysN puppy

I mentioned a week or so ago that Gerry  (Munguin’s man with the camera) had been chosen as an SNP candidate for the council elections in Glenboig Gartcosh and Moodiesburn ward.

N Gerry

Here he is with some woman he knows. (Munguin is NOT happy about this.)

Anyway, he now has Facebook and Twitter pages up and a “follow” from his friends at Munguin’s Republic would be much appreciated.

IMG_0001

When he’s not campaigning for the SNP, he’s taking photographs of his back garden!

As was I this afternoon.

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LETTER FROM MUNGUIN

FOR WEE WILLIE

liberals1liberals2LiberalsLiberal

Dear Willie,

You promise above, in your letter to prospective donors, that the Liberal Democrats in Scotland will keep their word. (Well, I guess there has to be a first time for everything.)

But you know, or you should know that, as much as you stood on a platform of “no second independence referendum”, the SNP and the Greens stood on a platform of having a second referendum if there was a substantial change in circumstances...and they actually cited Scotland being dragged out of the EU against its will as one of these circumstances. Scotland voted 62-38 to remain in varying degrees across the whole country. So, I’d say they kept their word to their voters too.

I don;t think that there can be any doubt at all that Nicola Sturgeon, the SNP and the Greens intend that Scotland would remain, or rejoin the EU. Given that the Liberals have always been pro-EU, I’m sure you will appreciate the potentially horrific damage that leaving the EU will do to Scottish jobs, the economy,  and the social fabric. And given that there is no effective opposition to the Tories in Westminster (the SNP only having 56 votes; your own party having 9 and Labour far too preoccupied with internecine warfare to bother their backsides about opposing Tories), I’m sure you would agree that Nicola Sturgeon’s prediction that we may be facing Conservative governments till 2030.

The Tories have (and I have to remind you here that they did a lot of it with the help of the Lib-Dems) starved councils and government services of money so that, in England, without the protection of the Scottish government, basic services are simply no longer coping. When the UK withdraws from the EU we know that we will lose its protection in many different areas.

Liam Fox has already talked about deregulating businesses and some of the nuttier element of the Conservative Party (who wield considerable power now) are talking about reducing standards to meet the demands of the Americans. No more EU protection, we will be left to the tender mercies of the Tories. And we all know that they don’t actually have any tender mercies, except when it comes to themselves, the Lords, big business and of course, the royal family.

This may well suit the people in England as that is what they voted for. But it won’t suit us here…and part of your name is “Democrats”, remnember?

I understand too that you are keen to have a second referendum on leaving the EU once Mrs May, Mr Fox and Mr Davis along with Mr Johnson, have finished their negotiations. In fact, I agree that that would be sensible, but of course, it is not going to happen. I’m not sure why a second referendum is good, for an outcome you disagreed with, and bad for an outcome you backed. Any explanation?

%%%

You say that the SNP will take Scotland out of Europe. I think you are getting a bit muddled here, Willie. You see that was the last campaign message. Remember…the only way to stay in the EU is to vote no to independence? We are trying to keep Scotland in the EU, and from what we can tell, they want us to be there.

You talk about fighting in the last referendum for a Britain that is open, tolerant and united. Can you tell me how you reckon that you score on that, given all the racism, and violence against EU citizens? And fair? To sick people, dying of cancer and being told to go get a job? Old people not being above to get any social care and ending up in hospital beds for months at a time? If that lot is your idea of open tolerant and united, then I’m damned if I can work out how your brain works.

Now I reckon that the Greens and the SNP, a majority in parliament, have kept their promises. As you can see I’ve  taken this opportunity to remind you of one of the biggest you broke…the tuition fees pledge débacle… and of how your then boss aided and abetted the Tories, with, as I recall, your full support.

Kind regards

 

Munguin

JUST WHAT IS THE GENTLEMAN’S AGREEMENT WITH NISSAN?

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In the immediate aftermath of the Brexit vote, Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK) Limited, a subsidiary of the Nissan Corporation, based in North East England and employing somewhere in the region of 6,500 people, expressed concern about its situation in relation to sales to the continent.

In the immediate aftermath of the Brexit vote, Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK) Limited, a subsidiary of the Nissan Corporation, based in North East England and employing somewhere in the region of 6,500 people, expressed concern about its situation in relation to sales to the continent.

Britain’s imminent departure from the EU put at risk the international company’s ability to trade tariff-free with the massive market on the mainland and the company sought assurances that this trade would not be adversely affected by Brexit.

The UK government, in turn, wrote to the company, apparently promising that they would not be affected by the change in Britain’s status.  At the time this was considered to be a rash promise, given that only days had passed since the referendum vote (a vote which saw the North East of England vote to leave the EU, and Sunderland did so overwhelmingly 61%-39%). Who knew what was what, except, of course, that Brexit meant Brexit.

 

There were those who wondered what kind of assurances the UK could possibly give at that stage in the exit process, however, when pressed the government in London declined to give any information. A Whitehall spokesman told the Independent “There was no specific promise of money. It was a gentleman’s agreement, a case of doing whatever it took to keep Nissan happy.”  Whatever it took, huh?

The SNP asked for clarification but Greg Clark, a minister in the UK government, refused to give details because of commercial sensitivity. Certainly, we imagine that if details of the Nissan deal got out, then other companies, facing possible tariffs, would also want assurances that they would not lose out. Presumably, that would include companies in the City of London, who stand to lose big time, and of course, exporting companies in Scotland.

A Freedom of information request was sent, with an obligation on the government to respond by late November 2016. There has still been no reply to this request and the SNP has now submitted an official complaint.

I can understand that some deals governments make with companies might be commercially sensitive, but can a deal like this, when the companies across 5 countries face the same problems, possibly be considered in these terms?

&&&

But commercially sensitive or not, we need to know what kind of deals the UK is doing with companies and whether or not the same deals could be made for Scotland’s companies. As Nissan is partly owned by the Fenech government, they will have details of whatever the letter contained. It seems odd then, to hide that information from the Scottish government.

Maybe we’d have more luck if we directed our request for information to the government in Paris.