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Coincidental mistakes

Posted on May 21, 2013 by

Yesterday the Daily Record led with a front-page splash about Labour-controlled South Lanarkshire council threatening to evict a tenant over bedroom tax arrears. Today the paper carries a profuse apology from the council’s leader Eddie McAvoy insisting that the letters were sent in error, although the recipient was unconvinced:

“The council last night hand delivered a letter of apology to Angela. But she said: “I don’t believe a mistake was made in the first place and it is only because I appeared in the Record that the council have backed down.””

The Record was deeply sceptical too, issuing a sternly-worded rebuke to the council in an editorial leader column which also pointed out other unsightly goings-on in the “long-time Labour fiefdom”.

We must presume that rogue elements in Labour are at fault, then.

Except, what’s this we see today in NORTH Lanarkshire?


The Black Triangle campaign reports that “The tenant is a single man who has suffered from mental health problems for most of his life. He had NO arrears until the bedroom tax was implemented. He has asked for a move to a smaller house but there is no suitable accommodation available for him.”

As they say on the internet – two’s a coincidence, three’s a trend. We’ll be watching closely for any more Labour councils trying to kick poor and vulnerable people onto the streets barely a month after the iniquitous tax – imposed on social tenants by the Conservative/Lib Dem coalition after being introduced for private renters by the previous Labour government – was introduced. Do let us know if you hear of any, readers.

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41 to “Coincidental mistakes”

  1. Erchie says:

    On certain other nationalist leaning news sites, reporting on the issues of the sick, disabled and unemployed only attracts comments when it can be used as an excuse to kick the party of the council above.

    I’m heartened that Wings is consistent in covering these issues not as a political football, but out of genuine concern.
    Black Triangle do some good and useful research, against the demonisation that paints the sick and disabled as scroungers, just for looking for little things like help towards adaptations to keep working, or enjoying any sort of life.
    Deity of choice bless you

  2. Holebender says:

    Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breath free… and I’ll throw them out into the street!
    Councillor Gradgrind (Lab).

  3. Restlessnative says:

    I’m finding it harder and harder to find the words to describe the contempt and hatred I have for these Bastards.I’m speaking to more and more people who are voting YES next year cos they’ve decided enough is enough.

  4. Hugh says:

    Don’t forget that Labour could have stopped the bedroom tax if they had wanted to.
    Opposition Day — [18th Allotted Day] — Housing Benefit (Under-occupancy Penalty) — 27 Feb 2013 at 18:50 — The Public Whip
    44 ‘absented’ themselves from the recent vote with the govt winning by 41 votes.
    Their text from the Labour whips obviously told them what to do.

  5. Chic McGregor says:

    Holebender, ‘muddled masses’ courtesey of MSM.

  6. Max says:

    A Labour government introduced the Bedroom Tax in 2008. The Tories may have applied to all social tenants but it should not surprise anyone that Labour councils in 2013 are sending Final Demands for Bedroom Tax arrears. 
    Isn’t that the whole point of ending “the something for nothing society” that Johann Lamont now demands.
    Isn’t that the reason that Labour are fast becoming unelectable in Scotland. 

  7. The Man in the Jar says:

    Living in South Lanarkshire very close (To dam close) to the border with North Lanarkshire none of this surprises me. Labour have had it so easy and for so long around here that they think that they are above reproach. With a large body of Labour MPs and MSPs to cover their backs why should they? It is not only the party; the population has over the years become so brainwashed that they believe that the Labour way is the only way. It is very difficult to get the local population to open their eyes and see how they are being lied to and manipulated by these snake oil salesmen. I know I have tried, they seem to prefer to resign themselves to their fate than to open their eyes and stand up for themselves. These two examples though are good news. At least some people are questioning the council’s actions. Unfortunately these same councils are very well practised at sweeping things like this under the carpet. Expect lots of “nothing to see here move along”.

  8. Tris says:

    What a shameful day for a Labour council.
    Still, we can’t have sick and disabled people getting something for nothing. That would never do
    I wonder, though, if ‘Jamie’ has a plan for what they will do with a single man who has mental health problems if they throw him out into the street and there is no single accommodation available to move him to.

  9. Les Wilson says:

    Man in the jar@
    Unfortunately it is called Apathy, increased by all the doom and gloom we get on a daily basis, lack of decent wages or just a job,  if that is,they can be bothered to look at anything!
    It is a big problem,especially in beaten down deprived areas where getting through the day is a struggle.
    I wish we could shake them out of it, but how do you get them involved enough to start actually caring about themselves and a better future?

  10. Adrian B says:

    @ Tris,
    Is the council not now under obligation to house him? This smacks of some crazy accountancy bureaucracy, shifting the issue from one set of books to another. 

  11. Holebender says:

    I suppose anyone evicted for rent arrears will be classed as intentionally homeless and therefore not entitled to any form of accommodation?

  12. Doug says:

    “once is happenstance, twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action” Goldfinger (Fleming)
    This is truly horrible. They seem to care not for the poor and vulnerable. Implementing a no evictions policy should be easy, making things like this deliberate, calculated cruelty.

  13. Mad Jock McMad says:

    Labour have already made clear they will not be making any changes to the ‘bedroom tax’ if they are elected in 2015, John Byrne stated this in a piece in the Gruniad.
    This leaves the Record with a problem in that their heroine, Lamont, supports the bedroom tax as official Labour policy, just as she supports Trident, student fees, prescription charges, coming down hard on the sick and disabled ….
    Maybe the slogan in the two Lanarkshires should be:
    ‘Vote Labour and end up in B&B accomodation.’

  14. Adrian B says:

    @ Doug,

    This is truly horrible. They seem to care not for the poor and vulnerable. Implementing a no evictions policy should be easy, making things like this deliberate, calculated cruelty.
    It rather highlights Labour social policy at local level.

  15. Erchie says:

    To quote Malcolm X
    “The press is so powerful in its image-making role, it can make a criminal look like he’s the victim and make the victim look like he’s the criminal. This is the press, an irresponsible press. If you aren’t careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.”

    In addition to this, the press is getting those with a little or on the borderline scared of having it taken away, and to victimise those without in an attempt almost to say “I’m being good, I’m hating the bad person, don’t make me next” And now you are into the Pastor Niemoeller quote.

    The Council have a duty to this individual same as it has to all, tenants or not. How does it reconcile this duty of care with evicting someone with nothing?

  16. bunter says:

    Live interview on BBC News 24 and AS got the Dennis Healey bit in.Very good positive and upbeat  interview seen far and wide………

  17. tattie-boggle says:

    Oh dear Eddie beloved brother of Baron mcAvoy of Rutherglen keeping the peasants in their place via the south Lanarkshire Cosa nostra.

  18. Morag says:

    It’s such a small amount of money!  I couldn’t believe it when I saw where the decimal point was.  I know it would only be a short-term fix, but surely someone can pony up £50, or even £130 if you add the other arrears?

  19. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Worth noting. I have been approached or had conversation with three different persons over the lat couple of days commenting on the Denis Healey  story.
    This is because it was in the Sunday Post!
    About 400,000 or more will have read that on Sunday. The important feature of that story is not the actual facts but the exposing of the big lie. That is a game changer. Having your plonker pulled for 40 years is not an experience the average Scot  takes kindly to
    Which indicates which part of the press many of our letters should be going to  – to the Post, the Record the Express, the Mail, the Sun – the high circulation tabloids

  20. Stevie says:

    This is so heart breaking – I hate them – Labourite scum.  It’s just wicked and only noticed because of the Daily Record of all papers and WOS.  I hope the Scottis electorate wake up to the bleak, empty future entirely bereft of opportunity in this toxic union.   Run your own affairs, don’t be destroyed by the right-wingers in London and in red Tory Scotland.

  21. Luigi says:

    Ahh, but surely that’s the Scottish government’s fault for not protecting all scots from eviction  for non-payment of bedroom tax. After all, that’s what Scottish Labour were calling for. What do you mean leave it to the councils? What can a poor Labour-controlled council do but to roll over, follow instructions from their London masters and start throwing vulnerable people on to the streets? When the evictions do start, how will BBC-Labour report it? Will they report it? I can’t imagine they can ignore it forever.

  22. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “It’s just wicked and only noticed because of the Daily Record of all papers and WOS”

    In fairness the Record has been very good on welfare reform generally, although naturally it tries to pretend it’s all down to the evil coalition, rather than just being a natural continuation of policies introduced by Labour. It’s covered it more than any other Scottish or UK paper.

  23. Holebender says:

    @tattie-boggle Cosla Nostra?

  24. Jeannie says:

    O/T – I mentioned this on another thread but thought maybe I’d better put it here too in case anyone wants to go tonight but hasn’t read the previous thread:
    By the way, as another poster mentioned, Brian Taylor of BBC Scotland is delivering a talk this evening on the 1997 referendum.  It’s the final seminar in the Vox Populi programme offered by Glasgow University and it’s open to the public to attend if they want to.  It takes place at 5.30 in room 611 of the Boyd Orr Building at Glasgow Uni.  

  25. Chic McGregor says:

    Erchie says:
    21 May, 2013 at 10:39 am
    “On certain other nationalist leaning news sites, reporting on the issues of the sick, disabled and unemployed only attracts comments when it can be used as an excuse to kick the party of the council above.
    I’m heartened that Wings is consistent in covering these issues not as a political football, but out of genuine concern.”
    While I agree wholeheartedly that Wings is consistent, especially in referencing corroborative sources, I think you may be labouring (sic) under a slight misapprehension here.
    North Lanarkshire has an outright Labour majority in councillor numbers and in South Lanarkshire they fall only a couple short of an outright majority.

  26. jake says:

    The Council are in a very difficult position in trying to determine the appropriate action in circumstances like this. Given both the urgency and sensitivity of the matter I anticipate a number of fully expensed fact finding missions to foreign parts and sunnier climes over the summer recess.

  27. Bill C says:

    Re the Record. The leopard does not change his spots. Todays pages 8 and 9 are a complete litany of lies, distortions and fears. Some choice headlines include “Salmond must find answers”, “Don’t bank on us being better off if we go alone”, “UK Treasury warn of indy hell”, “Government raise fears of economic meltdown after yes vote”. They even find space to give Jim Sillars an opportunity to have a pop.  Absolutely disgusting journalism from a Quisling rag bag of a paper.

  28. David Petrie says:

    I presume it will not have escaped you that South Lanarkshire Council are generous enough, when the mood takes them:
    “The largest remuneration package in Scotland in 2011-12, was received by Linda Hardie, Executive Director of South Lanarkshire Council who received £543,538.”

  29. Tattie-boggle says:

    @ Holebender
    🙂 🙂

  30. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Re the Record. The leopard does not change his spots.”

    Indeed not, and I saw today’s spread. But credit where credit’s due on the welfare stuff.

  31. Desimond says:

    Is this the same Eddie McAvoy who was so upset that Rutherglen Council had ordered a bronze bust of his brother Tommy ( whom i believe was once a record holder for least appearances in the House) during a grand refurb ( because we really needed some paving stones with lights in them) that he forced them into ordering one of himself too? Could be a Main Street urban myth mind you but the McAvoy mafia still rule that roost!

  32. The Man in the Jar says:

    I commented earlier, however it is far too nice a day to sit in front of a computer so I took the dog for a walk.
    To add to my earlier comment. It is my own personal experience that has caused me to come to the conclusion that North Lanarkshire Council area (with exceptions) is a boil on Scotland’s arse. Especially the areas in and around Coatbridge, Airdrie, Bellshill, Motherwell and Wishaw. Apologies to those trying to live decent lives therein. The social deprivation in some of these areas has to be seen to be believed. How things can get to that state in a civilised country is a disgrace. NLC are in the position that they have I suspect a large proportion of the population on benefits of one kind or another and a huge drain on their social work and housing budgets.
    Labour have only themselves to blame for this. It was they’re gerrymandering in the early nineties that has brought a lot of this about. It is a considerable time since Monklandsgate but it is worth another look as it is still impacts on this society today.

  33. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    N Lanarkshire Council
    anybody remember this?
    Incompetent and worse does not begin to describe this lot.
    The only to work for them is to get a “reference,”   allegedly.

  34. Morag says:

    I was born and brought up in a village two miles from Wishaw, moving into Wishaw itself (to a council house) with my parents when I was about 26.
    There is nothing would ever persuade me to vote Labour, not until they have been gutted and start over from scratch.

  35. Chic McGregor says:

    We also need to remember how enthusiastically Labour pursued the privatisation of housing stock.  In Inverclyde alone, this resulted in thousands of affordable houses being demolished.  Tens of thousands net reduction in available affordable homes throughout Scotland.
    And in Inverclyde, even the sainted Malcolm Chisholm came through to persuade the electorate to vote for it.
    We in the Inverclyde SNP opposed the ‘sell off’ (inverted commas because they actually gave Riverside Homes money with each home handed over).  In Westminster Alex Salmond signed an early day motion opposing stock transfer.
    You cannot net reduce the available affordable housing stock by tens of thousands without generating some form of homelessness.  Basic arithmetic.

  36. Barontorc says:

    The precise point is why will a Local Council take action under this iniquitous tax while disregarding its duty of care to the tenant.
    It seems obvious to me that if a tax is imposed that will take a portion of benefits from a tenant and where the tenant is willing to move into smaller accommodation to be in-line with the new benefits system, it is the landlord (Local Authority) who has a duty to offer that tenant smaller accommodation. The tenant can then, at no cost, continue to live in the over-provided accommodation until a suitable alternative is made available.
    If there is another reason for the tenant being vulnerable and thereby unable to cope with the adjustment needed to move downwards, surely the Local Authority must take this into consideration.
    Once again we are seeing only one side of the issue being enforced.

  37. Davy says:

    I am like a lot of you, I utterly hate the bedroom tax and the fact Westminster are trying to turn ordinary decent people’s homes into “pay as you go hotels” where you have to rent your individual rooms.

    And why do labour not object to this in Scotland, its for one reason only, their lords and masters down at Westminster do not want them to rock the boat regarding the middle england vote.

    Why the hell so-called scottish labour does not stand up for the people of Scotland and fight against this travesty of a repugnant tax I dont understand, surely the ordinary labour supporter must be asking the same question, and if not they should be.     

  38. paddywak says:

    i have repeatedly asked why the labour leader has brought his party to the rescue of david cameron. (5 times since the elections) and why is the scottish labour party not telling  their english masters where to go when told to evict tenants who cannot pay the bedroom tax, but no one will answer me.
    people in north and South Lanarkshire voted for labour in the General election and in the council elections as they expected them to help curtail the tories but as history shows they wont. come on scottish labour grow a pair and fight for your people. no wonder some of the party have joined the yes campaign. 

  39. fordie says:

    Yip again. Born and raised in ‘North’ Lanarkshire. Haven’t lived there for >20 yrs but my extended family do, so there often. Tell me about the elected reps. My family do – Labour not fit for purpose. Councillors, MSPs, MPS. Yet still they vote for them. I continue the good fight. At least got my mother NOT to vote twice for Labour in the Scottish Elections. Working on it. Bye the way, there are deprived areas all over Scotland. Try not to be over condescending. That don’t work. Motherwell/Hamilton come out near top in the ‘most desireable area to live’ not far back. I like it, just not the (uninformed) politics. And it doesn’t come from School. I can attest to that.

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