The 'no' campaign's well fertilized grass roots
"The registered office of Vote No Borders, a private limited company, is at 24 Chiswell Street, London, EC2Y 4YX . Which is perhaps surprising for a “Scottish grassroots campaign”. The directors are Malcolm Offord and Fiona Gilmore.
Now pay close attention: Fiona Gilmore is chief executive of Acanchi a PR Consultany which specializes in “Country Branding”. Its clients include Israel, Dubai, Bahrain and “England”. Yes, it actually specifies “England” on the company website. Acanchi also works for DFID – in short, it gets UK taxpayers’ money, plus Israeli and Gulf Arab money. Are you familiar with the word fungibility?
Malcolm Offord, it turns out, has donated over 120,000 pounds to the Conservative Party plus made personal donations to Michael Gove. He is the author of the report “Bankrupt Britain” on the Conservative Home website. In his paper Offord suggests that further cuts in UK public spending should continue to be made even after the present debt crisis has been passed and urges government to:
And the wee retired care home nurse Elizabeth Bashir? Well, she’s not quite as “grassroots” as shown by the BBC either..." Craig Murray, 2nd of May 2014“Reform the bloated benefits system of this country to reduce the burden on the state and, just as importantly, boost the growth rate of the country”
Investigative work by Douglas Daniel of Wings over Scotland also highlighted the very un-grassroot origins of the entity itself.
"Vote No Borders registered as a permitted participant [by the Electoral Commission] on the 19th March 2014 – 43 days before the launch of their website. If that seems odd, No Borders only registered with Companies House on the 18th March 2014. It became a permitted participant the day after forming.The BBC talked about the gathering momentum behind 'Vote No Borders' just one day after it's public launch (with a feature recorded on the day of its launch). It's almost as the BBC and the 'no' campaign were trying to give people a false impression.
...within 44 days of forming, this “grassroots” campaign has already managed to amass funding totalling a whopping £150,000, despite having absolutely no public profile. Wow, even we’re a little jealous." Wings over Scotland, 'While we're investigating'
Daily, but sadly not uniquely, Fail
Only Labour's John Mann would speak, and in a sensational statement he told the Cox that it was "impossible to say and to quantify the scale of the problem" but insisted, "without question, it is a significant problem ... it has ruined people's lives".
"This is people being coerced into sexual relationships by people using their power position," he added. "There are people in here whose names would be rightfully held in shame and disgrace from their behaviour ... the shame is they have not been named and the public doesn't know them for what they are really like."
The Labour MP claimed other people in the party knew who the MPs were. "This is not 'hand on the knee' stuff we are talking about" Mann told the programme, "I'm talking about something much bigger, much more insidious, much more life destroying than that."
Asked if it was about people being pressurised into having sex with their MP, Mann replied: "Yes it is". Newsnet Scotland, 4th of May 2014
One former researcher described how she was "jumped" by an unnamed party colleague who she managed to "fight off". She said of Westminster: "This is a man's world, and to be at the top table or even near it, I've always felt I needed to roll with the punches."
The BBC reporter described having been told of young female researchers being fondled and groped by MPs. The problem, according to Mr Cox, was not restricted to one party but existed in Labour, Conservative and Lib Dem parties.
Another victim told how he had been physically assaulted by three MPs and had experienced suggestive comments from around five others.
"This is very much a cross party consensus. No one party has a monopoly on this. I've experienced it from all three Westminster parties" he told the BBC reporter. Newsnet Scotland, 4th of May 2014
One rule for us, one rule for them
When is your Tory or Lib Dem MP going to receive their state pension?
"They [Conservative and Liberal Democrat MPs] have announced that changes to the State Pension Age would be brought in much sooner than they promised - with less than two years’ notice in some cases. This leaves tens of thousands of women approaching retirement age without a pension they had planned for – sometimes for as long as 6 years.
Many men are also facing much longer waits for a state pension than they had budgeted for. Mind you – Lib Dem and Tory MPs aren’t daft. They’ve made sure MPs close to retirement got a ten-year exemption to changes to their own pensions." Pride's Purge, 3rd of May 2014
"I want to correct what you [BBC] said...[BBC website] reported me as saying that [independence] would threaten the peace process. I did not say that, that is not my view.
Actually, a Yes vote in Scotland would reinforce the argument against violence, because it's a demonstration of how you can achieve major change through the political democratic process." David Trimble, 3rd of May 2014
|"I wonder if we can also go back and stop Jeremy Clarkson learning any nursery rhymes?" BBC Executives [probably]|
"That sounds pretty darned definitive, right? A named UK government pensions minister speaking on the record in Parliament making clear that pensions were NOT at risk. So we looked forward to the big news being all over the media this morning." Reverend Stuart Campbell, Wings over Scotland
While you wait
|We're pretty sure a 90.3% success rate is better than 88%|
We like Unicorns!
"The title of the piece is “How many unicorns do you earn?”, and below that is a large fantasy fiction style picture of the mythical beast. After asking “How many unicorns would it take to do your weekly shopping?”, the piece begins: “This sounds like the start of a bad joke”." Trevor Chaplin, 7th of May 2014
|Member of 'Unicorns for Independence'|
"People pretend they think a Scots currency would be called the Groat to belittle and ridicule the idea, and make the notion of a Scottish economy seem antiquated and obsolete. It's just a cheap shot by people who want to suggest an independent Scotland would be backwards, and a Scottish currency crude and naive.
The Unicorn was introduced to the story not by McCrone, but by BBC reporter Jamie Ross. The imagery is clear enough: the idea of having our own currency is a fantasy, and – as the opening remark tells us – “a bad joke”. This is all very familiar to those who have read Frantz Fanon; Jamie Ross is telling us that once left to our own devices by our Westminster saviours, Scotland “would at once fall back into barbarism, degradation and bestiality” (p169, Fanon, 1967, "The Wretched of the Earth"). Is he doing it on purpose? Possibly, but more likely he just knew what sort of thing would go down well: a jokey, fatuous, and patronising piece. The sort of thing no BBC reporter would ever turn in on Sterling." Trevor Chaplin, 7th of May 2014
"Ireland, of course, was in a far deeper financial hole than resource-rich, wealthy Scotland could ever conceivably find itself in. Yet after just six short years it’s already seen as a safer credit risk than the UK." Rev Stuart Campbell, Wings over Scotland
Young Tories (and why there are so few)
"There are cuts to laptops, software, accommodation adjustments, non-medical help and the general allowance that can be used for all sorts of necessities for disabled students to access education. These cuts mean students will no longer be entitled to any of the above except in as yet unspecified exceptional circumstances and complex cases." Rihanna Humphrey, Scots Politics
"How many students currently studying will be unable to afford to stay? How many will have to make difficult choices about which aspect of their assistance is the least essential? How many will find that they cannot continue studying as a result of these changes? These changes take education away from disabled people. They take education from working class disabled people. They take education away from people just like me because we learn a little differently." Rihanna Humphrey, Scots Politics
All ring-roads lead to London
|Planning has already begun on the next London infrastructure subsidy|
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