stooges of the Kremlin

Wings Over Scotland


Picking up the gauntlet

Posted on July 21, 2017 by

We’ll be honest with you here, readers – even though it’s only July, when it comes to sheer ham-fisted, tin-eared, clown-shoed, foot-shooting idiocy we didn’t think anything in Scottish politics in 2017 could possibly top the SNP’s decision that the surefire way to win back voters after a poor election result was literally mutilating puppies.

After all, that’s the sort of thing you say as a self-evidently ludicrous and hyperbolic joke: “Ha ha, the SNP are so dominant in Scotland these days that the only way they could lose an election would be if Nicola Sturgeon went on telly and started hacking the tails off week-old puppy-dogs without anaesthetic! LOL!!!!!”

It couldn’t even be defended as a grotesque but cynically cunning attempt to win votes from the rural hunting-and-fishing lobby – they did it right AFTER the election, when all those people had just gone out and voted Tory anyway.

But bless their hearts, Scottish Labour never once saw a low bar that they didn’t try to slither under, and today they pulled off the seemingly impossible.

They didn’t just jump straight in, though – they warmed up first. The Scottish Labour Campaign For Socialism, a left-wing faction convened by list MSP Neil Findlay, had put out a press release this morning in which they came to the conclusion that Scottish Labour’s ineptitude had held back the UK party in June’s election.

The only startling thing about that blindingly obvious, logical and sensible deduction was that anyone in Scottish Labour had had the wit and self-awareness to spot it. Sure enough, it was only a matter of hours before Findlay himself interrupted his holiday to angrily disassociate himself from the least stupid thing he’d ever said.

But those were just the stretching exercises. The headline act was still to come.

Most of the press had earlier reported the stupefyingly cretinous decision made by four London trading standards officers last weekend to hand a £150 fixed penalty notice to a five-year-old girl who’d been selling homemade lemonade for 50p a cup from a little table in the street near her house to people going to a local music festival.

The story even made CBS in America, where children having lemonade stands is an icon of culture as big as Oor Wullie’s bucket, conkers and scrumping apples (WHICH IS OF COURSE THE SERIOUS CRIME OF THEFT) are on this side of the Atlantic.

When the news got out a rightly-embarrassed council quickly cancelled the fine and apologised, but the damage was done. The little girl, who’d been terrified and reduced to tears by the heavy-handed attitude of the enforcement officers, said she didn’t want to do it again because she was too scared.

And you’d think that’d be the end of a needlessly miserable story of jobsworth morons. But at that point entered our dear old pal, Scottish Labour activist Duncan Hothersall.

We read the article FOUR times to make sure we weren’t missing some cleverly arch and ironic joke. But we weren’t. It really was advocating fining five-year-old girls a year and a half’s pocket money for selling refreshing drinks to passers-by on a hot day.

The main justification – and remember, we’re not making this up – was that the little girl was a danger to public health, and also that she might be evading tax:

Never mind that it’s pretty hard to poison anyone with lemon juice, sugar and water in a paper cup. And never mind that the council accepted that the officers were in the wrong and in breach of the most staggeringly obvious application of common sense imaginable. By God there was an IMPORTANT SOCIALIST PRINCIPLE at stake here, and Hothersall wasn’t about to side with an ENEMY OF THE STATE.

But then the Morningside Mussolini told us what was really on his mind.

And that was an example your humble editor could relate to personally, so indulge me for a few paragraphs in an anecdote.

The last time I got a speeding ticket, many years ago now (and one of only two in over 30 years of driving), I was heading home from a poker game at 2am. I went through a camera at 41mph in a non-residential industrial and retail estate with a 30mph limit, with not a single other car on the road.

Now, speed cameras are there for a reason. Going too fast through what in daylight hours is a busy traffic bottleneck with shoppers, McDonalds customers and teenage children from a nearby school absent-mindedly wandering into the road while staring at their phones is a reckless and dangerous act. But at an empty, brightly-lit junction at two in the morning – with not a living soul either on wheels or on foot to be seen – it’s a different story, and plainly isn’t a risk or even an inconvenience to anyone.

Conversely, around the same period, coming home from another game at a similar hour one damp winter evening I got caught in the worst fog I’ve ever seen in my life, high up in the hills surrounding Bath. I literally couldn’t see a foot in front of the car’s bonnet and was crawling along at 7 or 8 mph, but even then still bumping up onto the grass verge from time to time. The only thing justifying moving at all was that being stationary would probably have been even more dangerous to other road users.

Suddenly another car came what felt like hurtling past me from behind on the single carriageway – in reality doing what was probably no more than 30 mph in a 40 limit, but nevertheless absolutely insanely excessive for the horrendous conditions.

The driver of that car wasn’t breaking the law, but if they didn’t kill themselves and/or others it was by miraculous luck rather than judgement. (If they ended up wrapped around a tree or dead in a ditch 50 yards further on – and frankly I hope they did – I’d never have known about it, because you couldn’t see two feet to the side either.)

There’s a pretty obvious point to this. If the fog driver didn’t die they got off scot-free. Meanwhile, having – unlike them – endangered absolutely nobody I’d found myself in front of a magistrate, who exercised no more common sense than the Tower Hamlets enforcement officers and fined me money that at the time I seriously couldn’t afford, along with three penalty points that could have made the difference between someone being able to get (or keep) a job and not.

And of course that was technically nobody’s fault but my own. I was bang to rights breaking the law. But justice that takes no account of common sense is no justice at all, and I was raging that something so spitefully, pointlessly, vindictively unjust could happen to somebody who’d hurt no-one. (I liked to dramatise.)

I held the system in contempt for not being able to look at the merits of a case and say “Look, you shouldn’t speed but in circumstances like these a warning is enough”. I was bitter that money I needed for food was being taken away, and I was furious that the administrative costs of punishing me for doing no harm almost certainly outweighed the fine. I was angry that police and court time had been wasted when proper criminals were walking free and the courts all have huge backlogs, and all the other clichés.

The only tangible product of the entire process, in other words, was the creation of a grudge. And I got over it after a while. But for someone else it could have been the straw that broke the camel’s back. And even if it wasn’t, it had only a negative impact, because pretty much everyone hates being treated like an idiot who can’t be trusted to make adult decisions like how fast it’s safe to drive on a straight empty road.

A civilised society relies at the most fundamental level on people treating each other with respect and decency because they want to, not under fear of punishment. Laws are a pretty useful framework for broadly codifying the society’s principles, but blind and inflexible adherence to them that flies in the face of all possible common sense generates nothing but toxic and anti-social reactions.

That innocent little London girl will now grow up afraid and mistrusting of authority. resentful, cowed and fearful of ever doing anything nice or enterprising. Who has that helped? What good has that done? Who was the winner here?

If FOUR fully-grown humans couldn’t somehow come to the conclusion between them that maybe it wasn’t really necessary to fine a five-year-old £150, what hope is there for mankind? We’re truly all doomed.

And if your response to them doing that isn’t facepalming horror but to shout “hooray for the enforcers”, then you’re not a “monster”, because that’s unfair to monsters. Monsters can’t help it. Monstrousness is in their nature. All that you actually are is a petty, officious, snivelling, pompous, tiny-minded, horrible wee wank. And it’s you, not a primary-school lassie with a lemonade stand, that is the ruin of humanity.

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    1. 21 07 17 18:56

      Picking up the gauntlet | speymouth

    115 to “Picking up the gauntlet”

    1. Ian McCubbin says:

      It’s summer all make a fun read. Apart from the Labour stupidity its on a par with what the trading standards officers did.
      Which was ……words fail.

    2. Bugger (le Panda) says:

      WRT Public Health

      If ever you want to have a clean (temporary natch) mouth and throat, eat a lemon or orange or pure juice of them.

      I am surprised that Duncan was unaware of that.

    3. Andy-B says:

      What a absolute tosser, very BrianSpanner-esque if you ask me.

    4. jdman says:

      Dont hold back Stu, let him have it!

    5. THOMAS brotherston says:

      If it’s no Orange walks it’s Lemonade Stands. Fed up hearing about all things citrus!

    6. Capella says:

      Complete contrast to their attitude to OBFA.

    7. We do not call you a “Monster”, Duncan. The term, “arsehole” is quite sufficient.

    8. Geoff Huijer says:

      Couldn’t agree more.

    9. Grouse Beater says:

      The car crash photograph – James Dean’s last drive.

    10. jimnarlene says:

      I don’t know if Duncan has noticed, but he has, indeed, morphed into a middle aged Tory twat.

    11. dakk says:

      Brilliant Stuart.

      Thanks for the laugh.

      We all know types like Hothersall.

      He,and worthies likes him like to think they uphold true British values.

      The fact is.They actually do.

    12. jimnarlene says:

      @ Grouse Beater, I thought as much. The bathtub was no protection, against the telegraph pole.

    13. Camz says:

      Read it. Re-read it. Read it once more, just so I didn’t miss any of Duncan’s writings.

      The man’s a knob.

    14. Jimbo says:

      Only problem for the jobworths and Hothersall is that the girl is 5 years below the age of criminal responsibility (England) and is excluded from criminal liability for her actions, so therefore cannot be charged with a crime or offence never mind fined for it.

    15. mike d says:

      Rev,some years ago i parked the front wheels of my car on a zig zag at a crossing. 7. 20am in Kidderminster,nobody about,popped into shop to use cash point .approached by police who had parked their car 50/60 yds away. Told me to stay put,walked back to his car got his hat and ticket machine . walked back and booked me, after asking me how many points i had on my licence,to which i replied none. He said you’ve got 3 now,and £60 fine. Nothing will ever convince me to this day,that my Scottish accent wasn’t a factor in this incident. The world and his wife parked there the rest of the day to use same cashpoint,not a copper in sight. And unlike yourself rev it was the creation of a grudge which i never forgave those b******s for.

    16. Jimbo says:

      “a horrible wee wank”.
      The perfect insult. Near spat mah beer oot

    17. Morgatron says:

      Come on Stu, they should have hung her or at least put her in the stocks. Hothersall is a skid mark on Scotlands pants.

    18. mike d says:

      British values eh,where would we be without them? Two faced lying hypocrites.

    19. call me dave says:

      Taking the pith out of Hothersall is OK by me Rev.

      “Squeeze him till the pips squeak”! Healey once (allegedly) said.

    20. Legerwood says:

      Was there not a series of adverts for a bank – HSBC? – that featured a wee girl setting up a wee business selling lemonade in the street?

      Setting a bad example and leading our youth astray – typical bankers. Where were environmental health then?

      This case is ridiculous over reaction by Council.

      As for the article in New Statesman – would not dignify with a comment.

    21. Ken MacColl says:

      Good for a titter ..and a bigger tit than Hothersall could be difficult to find.

      I cannot get all het up about a 5 year old lassie selling lemonade on a hot day for a good cause but then again the fact that two pensioners at Faslane we jailed and are presently awaiting trial after making a dignified and peaceful demonstration against the obscenity of Trident I find difficult to accept. Presumably DH can live with that though?

    22. @scotsnat says:

      Imagine having Duncan Doeball as a father?
      its Jeremy Beadle I feel sorry for, he’s totally stole and sullied his look.

    23. Effijy says:

      Dung Hotshityall lives in a computer world.

      No idea about common sense, emotions, right and wrong, morals.

      It does not compute to have a nice chat with a wee girl
      stepping out to meet the world and get her first taste of work experience and commerce.

      I suppose if he and his Labour friends and colleagues can spend a few £Billion of Tax Payers money on illegal wars and on bombs to drop on top of children, there wasn’t really a possibility of him see this story for what it is.

      Yet another reason never to touch Labour with a Barge Pole and seek Scottish Independence.

    24. Effijy says:

      An English Nuclear weapon explodes in a Scottish Naval Yard,Millions are killed and maimed.

      Wee girls sets up a drinks stall for those still able to walk away from the fall out.

      Along comes Dung CanMakeYourGardenGrow with a council official and doubles up her fine for a second offence.

      Well it does say he is right in the Labour Council Jobsworth Hand Book!

      Not eloquent I know, but what a Fanny of a man.

    25. Capella says:

      O/T GOLF – BBC ignoring the fact that a Scottish player is no. 6 today. Richie Ramsay. No mention. BBC very keen on McIlroy though. Is that because he is from NI?
      I know nothing about golf. Was just curious.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/live/golf/38520878

    26. Ruglonian says:

      Best piece I’ve read for ages!!

      Nowhere but Wings would you read that end paragraph, and that is meant as a compliment 😉

      Cheers for a bit of common sense Stu, and regarding your indulgence in an anecdote well let’s have more of the same. It’s personal experience that help shape our opinions. If that wee girl grows up with a disdain for authority and the ludicrous systems that govern in the UK, then I say good!

    27. Bob Mack says:

      Oh dear,oh dear, oh dear. What else can you say ?

    28. The Man in the Jar says:

      Someone (I know not who) once said.

      “Laws are for the guidance of wise men and the obedience of fools”

    29. Portjim says:

      Don’t ever confuse the law with justice – any connection is tenuous, and probably coincidental.

    30. Dr Jim says:

      Did the child have a license for selling lemonade
      Did she have a health certificate
      Was she at least wearing rubber gloves
      Were there washing facilities
      Did she have a driving license for transporting this lemonade
      and was it properly refrigerated, was she in a Union at least
      Worst of all was she foreign, did she at least have a foreigny sounding name

      So many reasons for jailing this child here under many parts of legislation against this type of flagrant abuse of law
      I’m surprised Neil Findlay wasn’t up in arms over under age children taking away jobs from lemonade selling British adults starving trying to make ends meet and visiting food banks under the oppression of the evil SNP child slavers
      Or was she part of the SNP Youth

      Still back to my curried puppy dogs tails with fly lice

    31. Auld Rock says:

      Jim, Jim, Jim, come on don’t be so horrible to ‘arseholes’ they’re useful for getting rid of the SHIT.

      Auld Rock

    32. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

      And there’s me thinking Blairites like Duncy were PRO business entrepreneurship.

      😉

    33. Peter Macbeastie says:

      Ah, Hothersall.

      I remember when he was on here and I had no idea who he was.
      The man could argue all the way up and down a corkscrew until you have no idea which way he’s trying to go.

      Little surprise to find a Labour cheerleader on the side of legality (no exceptions) and order.

      Remember when Labour would stand with people who were morally right acting against the law? Pretty sure the occupation of the shipbuilders with the late, great Jimmy Reid at the head wasn’t strictly legal.

      Jimmy must be birling in his grave at the likes of Hothersall.

    34. scottieDog says:

      So much for duncan the balirite capitalist. This is the guy who was tweeting about the benefits of dumping corbyn.

      https://mobile.twitter.com/dhothersall/status/747331783172067330

    35. HandandShrimp says:

      Duncan is The Parkie of Viz fame.

    36. heedtracker says:

      She’ll get over it. How many of us have not had a good official skelp for no actual good reason. And then watched all kinds of crimes like street violence around us go unpunished.

      Rather a lot of this farce union is run by arseholes like these guys and Hotthersal. It needn’t be though. Look at marijuana law. Its insane that people can get off their faces legally wiht booze in Asda or their local, yet how many lives are ruined getting caught and convicted with hash on them.

      Creeps like Hothersal rule much of Britannia. He keeps the jocks in line. Nothing changes in teamGB, unless…

    37. Stranger says:

      Spoken like the true liberal that you are.
      It’s the only thing to be said in favour of common law but since Blair the UK has become a country of red tape, form filling and bureaucracy.

      Every law should have a subset clause and parliament shouldn’t spend so much time making new laws bit cleaning up the old ones.

    38. dakk says:

      I wonder whether these 4 public ‘servants’ were who prompted that uncharacteristic outburst from Chancellor Philip Hammond regarding overpaid and underworked public sector workers.

      I’m sure we can all agree,the 1% pay increase cap would be entirely appropriate in their case.

    39. Robert Graham says:

      I remember having a wee disagreement with this, well let’s be fair , and refer to him as a supporter of labour in Scotland with some strange thoughts in his head , it was about the failure of Labour MPs to turn up to oppose the Tory party on the bedroom tax , despite references to the official Hansard record he was adamant the Scottish labour MPs voted against the Tory party, I finally gave up arguing with an totally delusional idiot, whose grasp of the truth was equaled only by Kezia .

    40. There are of course EU HR laws to protect this wee lassie from this sort of bullying and harassment,that is until the great Repeal Bill and Henry VIII lumbers over the horizon.
      If I were her father I’d sue the bastards for frightening my child to the point of tears.
      England has lost its collective marbles.
      As for this guy Hothersall, some would argue that until the boneheaded arshole of the first six months is finally announced, he must be odds on favourite.
      Some may argue that he is a prize tool, but I couldn’t possibly comment.
      You may recall the unelected Neil Findlay, Momentum Militant Corbyn man, was nominated as Scottish labour’s Tackling Obesity Czar a few moths back. BBC Scotland covered it, surprise surprise. How did that work out for him?
      Scottish Labour are beyond help, thank the Maker.

    41. Fairliered says:

      The tories are about to top it by force feeding puppies with lemonade

    42. “That innocent little London girl will now grow up afraid and mistrusting of authority, resentful, cowed and fearful”

      Sound training for adult life under a state of vindictive, self-righteous busybodies, I’d say. You can’t inoculate kids against unthinking obedience to ‘authorities’ (*) early enough.

      (*) Actually ‘powers’; Chesterton defined the difference when he said, “If a rhinoceros came into this restaurant now, I would freely concede that it had power; however, I would be the first to reassure it that it had no authority whatever.”

    43. @stranger:

      “…since Blair the UK has become a country of red tape, form filling and bureaucracy.”

      “Since Blair”? That sort of bureaucratic arseholism has been one of the primary feature of UKanian governance since at least 1940, under régimes of all parties. Beachcomber was sending it up in the 40s; Coren did likewise in the 70s. It’s The British Way, don’tcha know?

    44. Capella says:

      GOLF again. Scotland’s Richie Ramsay is now up to no. 5 but still no mention of him in the BBC Live page.
      The weather is appalling. “Great British Summer” they say. Imagine what they would say if had bee in Scotland!
      It’s dry and sunny here.

    45. Jim says:

      I am still laughing at Brexit! Take back control. We are the Masters of Jobsworthing and won’t have a single rule less after Brexit.

    46. heedtracker says:

      Worst thing really is twerps like Hothersall’s SLab have real power over us, like how he insists new Trident nukes must be bought, keep us safe and must be stored in their Scotland region. And they will be too.

      Why the fcuk do we tolerate these ridiculous and deadly clowns. Well their chief enablers, are the massed ranks of beeb gimps in Pacific Quay.

    47. Morag says:

      Even if there was a public health concern over the lemonade stand, surely any sane adult human being should have realised the way to deal with it was to have a quiet word with her father and suggest she pack up and leave because she didn’t have the right licence?

      Not to read a five-year-old her rights and hand her a fine. Apart from anything else, a five-year-old is below the age of criminal (and I suspect civil) responsibility and so wouldn’t be liable to pay a fine.

    48. colin alexander says:

      Careful Stu, people aren’t allowed to criticise the SNP on your website or they get called a troll and various obscene insults.

      But well done for highlighting the SNP voted for animal cruelty with the Tories. To be fair, it’s not just any animal cruelty, it’s only okay as long as it’s animal cruelty by the toffs who enjoy killing animals for fun.

      Have you noticed how most if not all are overlooking how your article started? Blind to SNP stupidity and cruelty.

      Wow, the SLab article was the most honest piece of political discussion I’ve read from SLab in many years.

      Maybe you better stop highlighting the incompetence of Kezia, cos if Neil Findlay and the Left get control of SLab the SNP will be back where they started trying to win a handful of seats.

    49. Scott says:

      We know what Lab are like but not as bad as Thatcher.

      Margaret Thatcher skipped a memorial service for victims of the Piper Alpha disaster so she could meet a top Conservative fundraiser.
      Instead the Prime Minister held a lunch with industrialists in London and met Tory fundraiser Lord McAlpine.
      I don’t suppose the 13 “hold May to account” will think trying to get money should be held up just because the lives of 167 men was lost.

    50. HandandShrimp says:

      if Neil Findlay and the Left get control of SLab

      Colin

      Neil was pretty much ignored by SLab when it came to leadership elections, mainly, I think, because although powered on a red bull variant of hatred for the SNP he is not desperately competent at anything else…even by Kezia’s standards. If Kezia falls I think Anas will catch the crown.

      I agree that the tail docking thing for a particular breed of working gun dog was hardly a PR masterstroke even if the numbers of puppies involved is pretty small and the procedure does prevent painful injury to the dog in its working role.

    51. Macart says:

      OFFS!

      Next up! A bake stall run by pensioners gets raided after a mysterious tip off.

    52. mogabee says:

      Dear oh dear. Dunkie and SLabour are truly endlessly wonderful comic fodder.

      Dunkie is turning into a right 😀 grumpy old git…

    53. colin alexander says:

      @HandandShrimp

      I think you are just trying to reassure SNP supporters by suggesting Anas Sarwar would get the SLab Scottish branch office manager job.

      I know a song about him:

      My paw’s a millionaire
      broon eyes, but no much hair.
      Anas lost his joab as a Tory clone
      A Red Tory parasite to the bone.
      Cos my paw’s a millionaire.

    54. HandandShrimp says:

      Colin

      Perhaps, but I think there is purpose in his reappearance in Holyrood. The Labour membership may be behind Corbyn but the machinations in the PLP run deep and strong. Time is being bided.

    55. Bob Mack says:

      How stupid can people be ?

      A girl called Domino’s Pizza complaining that her pizza was delivered without any topping. “It’s just plain bread”
      Domino’s manager apologised and said someone would deliver another.

      After a few minutes the manager received another call from the girl who sheepishly admitted opening the box upside down.

      I suppose there is no limit to stupidity.

    56. Az says:

      Well, that had a good few genuine laugh out loud moments, Rev. This must be the funniest piece I recall reading, love that style of writing…

      …and the coup de grace? Woohooo classic Scottish, we ALL know EXACTLY what that means, quality, 10/10 🙂

    57. Valerie says:

      Hotdogstall can out Tory any Tory, any day of the week.

      I called him loathsome on the previous article, for defending his good chum Fallon.

      What a waste of skin the guy is, to target a wee scared kid in his important column.

      Smacks of those well known Tory perversions, like bullying, we hear of so much. Disgusting.

    58. Robert Graham says:

      Right on Cue the resident arse jumps in with both feet in its gob , and immediately has a go at the SNP , do a little research and try and get some information about the doggie thing ,and who and why it was recommended to the Scottish government as a humain practice in order to protect the small number of dogs affected.
      But that is not the Point is it ? ,The attraction of this particular site, is disruption ,and attempting to cause arguments between contributors, and generally being a nuisance, seen it all before on other sites, it is Boring . and extremely predictable, have a nice day now .

    59. Janet says:

      And if the lemonade stand had in fact been operated by BBC Apprentice candidates, no foul.

      Funny that, not a food hygiene certificate in sight yet it’s perfectly okay to sell food?

      Duncan can explain everything.

    60. Stoker says:

      Rev wrote:

      “..the Morningside Mussolini….”

      😀
      __________

      A quiet word with the bairns guardian would have been the grown-up thing to do. I ponder for a moment, how many village fete’s and fundraisers all over Britain will now be having their home baking stalls raided by tooled-up riot squads?

      FFS doesn’t even begin to explain my disgust.

      Also, how many Red Tory financial backers are at the tax dodging? Perhaps the Morningside Mussolini will give us all some answers, eh?

    61. colin alexander says:

      @HandandShrimp

      You could be right about scheming by the PLP, I just thought that as he was rejected by the electorate as an ex-MP, he was just jumping back on the gravy train.

      And for a short time he was already Acting Leader of SLab after Johann Lamont confirmed what we all already knew: SLab is indeed just a branch office.

    62. K1 says:

      Aye Janet and don’t even get me started on the BBC food programmes, I once watched a Jamie Oliver episode, accidentally years back, there he wiz chopping lettuce leaves atop a board he’d literally just finished cutting raw fish on…and naw it wisnae ‘editing’, he didn’t wash his hands either between the fish and lettuce handling. Where wiz hunkin doughnut’s outrage then, aye, thought not.

    63. heedtracker says:

      colin alexander you know you sound just like a Duncan H, Colin A, in fact exactly like him:D

      Tell us again, in your endless screeds of bleh, about how Scots want to be sovereign again, but in your UKOK confederacy of sovereignty, and independently sovereign with and but still stuck in this farce union, run by Dunc H grade tories, again.

    64. K1 says:

      No he wasn’t, he was the deputy leader of slab when she was the actual leader and he quit literally days after she quit.

    65. colin alexander says:

      @Robert Graham

      Stu Campbell said: “when it comes to sheer hamfisted, tin-eared, clown-shoed, foot-shooting idiocy we didn’t think anything in Scottish politics in 2017 could possibly top the SNP’s decision that the surefire way to win back voters after a poor election result was literally mutilating puppies.”

      Dogs Trust, SSPCA and the BVA Vets association all opposed the reintroduction of tail docking.

      The animal welfare experts and millions of animal lovers must be all wrong, cos the SNP voted with the tweeds, waxed cotton jacket and wellies animal killing Tory toffs.

      Even SNP supporters are disgusted by this, but criticism of the SNP leadership is forbidden, even when it’s justified.

      So, are they all arses too for saying the same thing?

      SLab went downhill because too many in SLab were brown nosing careerists, all toeing the party line and sookin up to the bosses even when they were leading the party to disaster with Red Tory policies.

      SNP will go down the pan too, if the root and branch members just do the SLab thing too. It’s already happening, but the SNP members are still in denial.

      The SNP have made some very rubbish decisions recently. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind and tell them some harsh truths.

      Oh, shouldn’t have used that “cruel to be kind” argument, that’s a line the tail dockers and their SNP MSP supporters would use.

    66. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      I’m getting really sick of people bitching at each other about who’s the most indy in these comments, folks. Gonnae quit it?

    67. Thepnr says:

      Once more another very interesting and relevant article to the state of today’s politics in Scotland has been hijacked already and turned into something else.

      I was enjoying the comments, some serious and some a laugh until…

      I’m saying no more on this subject as it doesn’t seem to matter. Things will just go on and on and on. Unless deprived of Oxygen.

    68. Legerwood says:

      There is government guidance for village fees etc and food hygiene.

      https://www.food.gov.uk/business-industry/caterers/food-hygiene/charity-community-groups

    69. Dr Jim says:

      Alyn Smith has sent me the downloaded PDF of Brexit events this week in Brussels and I’ve read all of it and pretty short it is too

      Green is for Agreed
      Red is for no agreement
      Yellow is almost maybe nearly
      The document is mostly Red in nature because the Inglish wont agree on citizens rights either In UK or EU

      The summary in short is the Tories are big fat giant liars when they say they have made good progress, they’re not even at the races and the EU folk are incredulous at the unpreparedness and basic stupidity of the Inglish government a year on and still no planned direction

    70. Geronimo says:

      Got caught by the enforcers speeding on my skateboard outside out local labour party hall….smiles

    71. heedtracker says:

      Oh, shouldn’t have used that “cruel to be kind” argument, that’s a line the tail dockers and their SNP MSP supporters would use.

      Colin we get it. You want Scots like me to stop voting SNP and vote for your sovereignty thing/plan.

      But how though Colin. You hate the SNP, you dont seem to like the SLab crew, and you want a sovereignty Scotland but only in the UK, with Westminster in charge of all the big issues but Scots will be sovereign, in your great confederation of independence in a one or more sovereign nation UK plan for us.

      Confused.com, me, down the pan even.

      Tell us who to vote for Colin, even the Colonel Ruth party.

    72. mr thms says:

      It will be interesting to see what other SNP policies the Tories vote for..

    73. Thepnr says:

      The true face of Labour in Scotland is shown by the likes of Duncan Hothersall, John McTernan, Anus Sarwar, Jackie Baillie…I could go on but what’s the point.

      All of the above are Tory supporting plants within the Labour party as are so many others. They supported austerity, they oppose free education, they want to keep Trident.

      Everyone a hypocrite. McTernan states boldly “that you cannot win from the left of centre” what an arse after Corbyn confounds expectation despite the media.

      All of these halfwits opposed Corbyn and now he’s the supposed Messiah that will rescue Scottish Labour from oblivion, they are deluded. Sad to see really, that they will change their colours as easily as the wind changes direction. That’s SLab for you.

      Let’s get things into perspective, Labour in Scotland have gone from being the most dominant party in Holyrood third.

      Most Importantly, they now have 7 MP’s compared to 1 in 2015 but 41 in 2010. Their vote share in Scotland went from 42% in 2010 to 24.3% in 2015 losing them 40 seats.

      Yes they made a comeback in 2017 their vote share went from 24.3% to a massive 27.1% and they won another 6 seats. Says a lot really about the FPTP system.

      Anyway who cares, Labours vote went up less than 3% those that less them won’t be coming back anytime soon, they’re lucky to have got that on the back of the Corbyn rise.

      Next time it will be different, we’ll have the last laugh.

    74. Still Positive says:

      heedtracker @ 11.26

      Please stop interacting with him, he is a waste of space.

    75. colin alexander says:

      @Heedtracker

      I think it should be SovereigntyRef, not indyref2 that we should be debating and deciding on.

      Skip the long explanation (below) if you don’t want to read why.

      ———————————–

      The YES campaign wasn’t an indy campaign. It was based on sharing the pound and EU membership offering some political sovereignty: Holyrood replacing WM as our prime parliament.

      You can’t be independent while reliant on the Bank of England controlling your monetary policy and the EU deciding much of your economic and social policies.

      However, credit to the SNP, they recognise sovereignty lies with the people of Scotland.

      How that sovereignty or “power to decide” is exercised is what really matters.

      Scotland does not have to overturn the WM is sovereign theory. We just have to tell the rUK it does not apply to Scotland, as the people of Scotland have used their democratic sovereignty and decided the Scottish Parliament will be politically sovereign in matters affecting Scotland within the UK.

      WM does not have to agree with that in theory to accommodate it. It only has to agree Scotland’s Parliament will have the final say on matters affecting Scotland during negotiations for the new way the Union would operate.

      Scotland does not have to face trying to overturn the NO to indy vote. Why ask a question that doesn’t need to be asked and does not need to be answered now?

      The UK Govt wanted that question asked as they knew it put the exercising of Scottish sovereignty out on a limb. The UK Govt insisted how our Scottish sovereignty could be exercised. It is the UK that decided we must choose or reject independence. They decided Scotland could not decide Holyrood could be sovereign unless independent. They knew the SNP were seeking Scottish political sovereignty far short of full economic and political independence.

      They knew the most popular choice for voters in Scotland appeared to support exercising of Scottish sovereignty without full independence.

      So the UK Govt made sure Scotland was not able to choose Scottish sovereignty. Only full independence or no.

      Why make the same mistake again when it’s not necessary to achieve political sovereignty?

      Why not embrace the referendum?

      That Scotland’s people were able to decide if Scotland should be an independent country or not is proof Scotland’s people are sovereign. They have the power to decide Scotland’s future and it’s political use of that power to decide (sovereignty). ( Even if you think they made the wrong decision that time).

      We should be reaching out to all who voted YES or NO- who exercised Scotland’s political sovereignty – and ask them to decide if Scotland’s Parliament should have political sovereignty, not asking them again about a theoretical independence that was never on offer by YES.

      If Scotland’s people decide Holyrood should be sovereign, Scotland’s people via it’s parliament can stop the WM abuses of power that rightly offend and upset many people in Scotland.

      It would not end the Union, but it would end how this Union operates with regard to Scotland, with WM doing whatever it wants to, ignoring Scottish protests or Scottish wishes.

      How WM and the UK Govt handles Scotland’s Parliament being sovereign would be up to them. Scotland would be offering to continue in Union, respecting the NO vote in 2014 and respecting those who voted for Scotland’s power to decide its own affairs.

      If it were the case Scotland had already decided Holyrood is sovereign regarding Scotland within the UK, WM has to accept and accommodate that or reject Scotland’s political sovereignty as part of the UK.

      Currently I think the best way forward would be a confederal relationship with the rUK – a different type of Union, NOT independence. So, Holyrood would be sovereign but we wouldn’t be independent.

      A solution that I believe would satisfy most NO and YES voters. How integrated that confederal Union would be, would be a matter for the Scottish Parliament and rUK.

      If WM and rUK reject Scottish democracy then it’s a rejection of NO voters who prefer to maintain a UK Union, but many of whom would probably agree Holyrood rule over Scottish interests is best for Scotland.

      If that Scottish Parliamentary sovereignty decision were made, Scotland’ could veto Scotland’s EU exit as part of Brexit or have the final say on whether Scotland approves of a Brexit deal that takes Scotland out of the EU AND the Single Market.

      But, until the Scot Govt ask the voters of Scotland, should Scotland’s Parliament be sovereign – either by referendum or via electoral mandate – then I’m just guessing the majority would back Scotland’s Parliament as sovereign.

      I accept and recognise the SNP won elections on the basis that Scotland should remain in the EU or Single Market and the UK Govt are ignoring that democratic decision already.

      However, as I’ve said, their way of doing this is by saying WM is sovereign, including over Scotland and saying that Scotland voted to be part of the WM dominated Union by voting NO, so Scotland accepted that WM decides Scotland’s fate.

      But Scotland never voted that. Scotland only voted NO to independence. Scotland did not not vote FOR anything.

      She certainly didn’t vote for Brexit Scotland as voters were told a NO vote would guarantee EU membership.

    76. colin alexander says:

      I’ve advised people who to vote for in the Council and General elections:

      SNP / Green and other pro-indy parties at Council elections. SNP at the GE. And that’s how I voted. Look up what I said, check if you don’t believe that. So clearly I am not unionist or Anti-SNP. Despite some harsh criticisms of them.

      There are no elections or election campaigns now. So I can’t advise anyone on who to vote for.

      That’s why we are free to discuss and criticise and offer suggestions to improve SNP policies to further Scottish interests.

      End of my comments on this thread. Time to give other people a chance to reply or debate the main thread.

    77. Thepnr says:

      Sumdae phone the polis thirs a lunatic loose on Wings FFS

    78. t42 says:

      “I was driving through the industrial estate down by the docks at 2am…on my way back from a poker game. That was the reason i was half naked officer, it was strip poker you see officer..”

      Aye right!

    79. Big Phil says:

      .youtube.com/watch?v=bRUDmLP6wlU

    80. Big Phil says:

      fek..ye get wit a mean 😉

    81. Ricey says:

      I got busted on the A9 for overtaking a rapidly slowing and clearly breaking down truck over a double white line – at 2 mph – …ye cannae make it up. And as for that Hothersall – what a lonely and sad wee man.

    82. t42 says:

      HandandShrimp says:
      “Duncan is The Parkie of Viz fame”

      Pahh hahaha! Take the prize now H&S!

    83. Big Phil says:

      Thepnr @ I always do it. thank you buddy. lol 😉

    84. frankieboy says:

      Duncan make the tattoos grow. I say that in my head every time I see that clown. Thanks for the laugh Stu.

    85. Ghillie says:

      Wee soul. How frightening for her.

      But WHAT was a wee 5 year old girl doing out by the road talking to strangers ?!!

    86. Street Andrew says:

      Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

      Little bits of power bring out the bully in the small minded.

      Pity council officials aren’t so hot on building regulations, but wealthy property developers aren’t so easy to intimidate.

    87. Cactus says:

      Aweright Legerwood ~

      I remembers it too.. thistle be the one ye were referring to:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=de1Bw0SvrLI

      Seems pretty harmless to me.

      Cheers n Happy holidays folkspeople > > >

    88. Angry Al says:

      So if you follow this “socialist” Labour Duncan guy’s logic, the miners were wrong and the government and police were right. Modern Labour Party (branch office) at its best.

    89. Nana says:

      Government borrowing shows surprise £2bn rise
      http://archive.is/Jar8b

      Rendition case against Jack Straw must be held in secret, judge rules
      http://archive.is/ohTcx

      Donald Trump ‘Asks Legal Team If He Can Pardon Himself’
      http://archive.is/aHwAq

      https://theconversation.com/new-documents-reveal-true-extent-of-miners-cooperation-with-thatcher-80919

    90. Cactus says:

      Fresh links.. yummy, read up!

      Thanks Nana x

      X.

    91. Roger Hyam says:

      I take it you had lost at poker – both times.

    92. Cactus says:

      Mwah babes x

    93. Legerwood says:

      Cactus at 7.14 am

      Yes the advert was harmless.

      Very impressed that you found it.

    94. Robert Peffers says:

      @jimnarlene says: 21 July, 2017 at 6:36 pm

      “I don’t know if Duncan has noticed, but he has, indeed, morphed into a middle aged Tory twat.”

      Indeed he has, jimnarlene. He morphed from being a pre-teen juvenile Tory twat right to Middle aged Tory twat, missing out the adult Tory twat stage entirely.

    95. The Labour lunatics must have really escaped from the asylum.

      As for Neil Findlay’s campaign for socialism, if he truly believes in socialism then why doesn’t he just leave the Labour party and start a new socialist party?

      Because the Late Tony Benn stated there are socialists in the Labour party, but the Labour party isn’t a socialist party.

    96. Allan Thomson says:

      I didn’t think the day would ever come when I agreed with Duncan, but hey-ho lots of strange things have been happening recently.

      The person responsible for this wee girl’s distress is her unthinking father, for whom the fine was indeed appropriate … whether the officials concerned were overly officious is another matter.

      I’m glad that you weren’t hurt by the other driver’s crass stupidity, but am equally glad that he didn’t come to a sticky end. Near misses like that shake one, I had a close shave with a driver emerging from a side road a few years back + I still shiver whenever I pass that junction.

      However, I HAVE got over the imposition of a fine + points for a speeding offence similar to your own. Being an aggrieved first-offender (or maybe more accurately, having been caught for the first time), I also took it to the sheriff court, brought a smile to the face of the clerk sitting below the rather sterner lady magistrate when, like you, I quoted the principle tenets of justice (in my case, Scottish). This formidable Perthshire dame quite brusquely reminded me that it was a summary offence with prescribed punishment and suggested that I take matters of Scots Law up with the Scottish Parliament.

      Unfortunately, I found it quite difficult to argue the case for ALL such offenders to be given the full hearing which I felt was my right, so Alec Salmond never got the letter.

      The moral of this billet-doux, if it’s not a bit early in the day, is that given enough scope, Duncan will eventually get something right … while you + I need to have the grace to recognise that the world doesn’t revolve around us.

      I’m off to avoid hammers, in case you don’t read this with the gentle good humour with which it is written.

      Have a good Saturday !

    97. Peter A Bell says:

      The only difference between Stuart and that other driver in the fog is that the former got caught while the latter didn’t. To say that the driver overtaking at 30mph in thick fog on a single carriageway wasn’t breaking the law is, frankly, utter drivel. The behaviour described is certainly dangerous driving, and possibly reckless driving. Either of which is a criminal offence.

      None of us gets to pick and choose which laws apply to us. It may be argued that the principle of nobody being above the law has been well and truly breached already. We may be assailed with a barrage of whataboutery relating to what we might summarise as ‘one law for the rich and another for the poor’. But we don’t defend a principle by emulating those who treat that principle with contempt. It really isn’t a good idea to set ones moral compass according to the worst of humanity. We should aspire to better.

      Like Stuart, that little girl broke the law. The problem was not with the law being applied, but with how it was applied. For reasons which are unlikely to occur to knee-jerkers, she had to be stopped from selling comestibles in public. But there was no justification for the heavy-handed treatment meted out. A quiet word with the lassie’s parents would have sufficed. Perhaps explaining to them the issue of legal liability and a wee reminder that we live in a litigious society.

      You will undoubtedly ask why, if those charged with enforcing the law can be accommodating in the case of the villainous lemonade seller, why can’t the authorities similarly treat offences such as Stuart’s on their merits. I would suggest that it is a matter of practicality. I don’t know how many speeding offences are committed in England and Wales every day. But I’d wager it runs into the thousands. And motorists being what they are, I would also bet that a substantial majority of those caught would indignantly insist that the law should not apply in their case.

      That means hundreds of torn-faced drivers heaping the weight of their bloated outrage on an already overstretched system. Society has to make a judgement about whether, and to what extent, it is willing to expend some portion of its limited resources on pandering to the self-interest of anti-social motorists who, having done the crime, don’t want to do the time.

    98. mike cassidy says:

      Its a filthy wet summer Saturday in Fife-

      so I’m just going to be boringly pedantic and say this is all false news because its the father’s name on the fixed-penalty notice.

      Hothersall’s still a horse’s arse, though.

    99. Breeks says:

      I remember a few years ago walking through the Meadows in Edinburgh just by the hospital, and was shocked to see someone in his 50’s/60’s in a suit berating a little girl of 5 or 6 for picking daffodils to take to her mother in the hospital right beside the path. “Those aren’t your flowers! You’re stealing them. That’s theft”, said this poor excuse of a man. Now there tens if not hundreds of thousands of daffodils that are grown in the Meadows. It was a wee bunch of flowers for her mum. There was just no need for it.

      Poor wee lass was instantly in tears and dropped the flowers. I felt terrible for her, shamed and emotionally scarred for long time just for doing something nice, and just as bad for her father, who was obviously torn between his upset daughter and kicking lumps out the miserable carmudgeon walking briskly away.

      The guy was heading for Morningside. Probably going home to pull the legs of a spider. I mean, it couldn’t be… Could it???

      Maybe it’s just a Morningside thing..

    100. Albamac says:

      A couple of weeks after our daughter died of leukaemia, two policemen walked up our front path. As soon as we saw them we thought that more bad news was about to be delivered.

      After we’d invited them in they explained that they had come to enforce a warrant that had been issued for failure to pay a fine. The fine, for failing to attend school without good reason, was levied in my absence and we knew nothing about it.

      When we’d explained our circumstances, the younger of the two didn’t look so keen on the task but his senior was made of sterner stuff. During the ensuing ‘conversation’, my wife asked the time-honoured question, “Haven’t you got more important things to do”? As soon as the trigger clicked, they grabbed me by the wrists and bundled me out through the garden and into their car.

      I was taken to the local police station, where I remained in custody from Friday afternoon until the early hours of Monday morning when I was transferred to the city centre to await the court’s pleasure.

      So, there I was sitting on my concrete slab when a cheery turnkey opened the cell. “Yer lookin’ a wee bit lonely in there. C’moan, I’ve got some company fur ye”. After our wee stroll along the corridor, he opened a cell door and pushed me into another world. The cell was already occupied by a mountain of a man, naked from the waist down, who had smeared himself and the tiled walls with shit. While he ranted and raved I took to a neutral corner. After a while I realised that I wasn’t even a blip on his radar. His work on the mural continued to the accompaniment of repeated vocal reminders that, “Ye cannae beat a good shite”!

      Soon enough, there was the familiar rattling of keys and the door swung open to reveal two more jailers on food-trolley escort. The male half of the duo rode shotgun while his female colleague asked me whether I wanted a roll on sausage or a roll on egg. Pointing into the cell, I asked, “Are you fucking kidding”? The woman shrugged and responded, “Well, if you don’t want it, we’ll just give it to him”. The preoccupied painter ignored her.

      The finale was a huge let-down. The guy in the wig asked for £13 (AYE, YOU READ THAT RIGHT. THIRTEEN QUID). I paid it and left with my family.

      Common sense? Common decency? Justice? To paraphrase the naked artist, “It’s a load of shite, an’ ye cannae beat it”!

    101. Gordon Graham says:

      As a Morningside resident, I must point out that Mr Hothersall does not live in my vicinity. For the sake of accuracy, as his postcode is located in EH16, perhaps he should be referred to as the ‘Prestonfield Putin’.

    102. Albamac says:

      Fines are a real money-spinner for the courts and an everlasting source of brownie points for the polis.

      For generations, Glaswegians, and others, no doubt, have accepted false convictions and stumped up their cash based on the ‘anything for a quiet life’ principle. For most of them, paying the ransom is the accepted price for being able to get on with their lives free from further interruption. Think time, trouble, work and wages.

    103. Albamac says:

      A couple of weeks after our daughter died of leukaemia, two policemen walked up our front path. As soon as we saw them we thought that more bad news was about to be delivered.

      After we’d invited them in they explained that they had come to enforce a warrant that had been issued for failure to pay a fine. The fine, for failing to attend school without good reason, was levied in my absence and we knew nothing about it.

      When we’d explained our circumstances, the younger of the two didn’t look so keen on the task but his senior was made of sterner stuff. During the ensuing ‘conversation’, my wife asked the time-honoured question, “Haven’t you got more important things to do”? As soon as the trigger clicked, they grabbed me by the wrists and bundled me out through the garden and into their car.

      I was taken to the local police station, where I remained in custody from Friday afternoon until the early hours of Monday morning when I was transferred to the city centre to await the court’s pleasure.

      So, there I was sitting on my concrete slab when a cheery turnkey opened the cell. “Yer lookin’ a wee bit lonely in there. C’moan, I’ve got some company fur ye”. After our wee stroll along the corridor, he opened a cell door and pushed me into a whole new world. The cell was already occupied by a mountain of a man, naked from the waist down, who had smeared himself and the tiled walls with shit. While he ranted and raved I took to a neutral corner. After a while I realised that I wasn’t even a blip on his radar. His work on the mural continued to the accompaniment of repeated vocal reminders that, “Ye cannae beat a good shite”!

      Soon enough, there was the familiar rattling of keys and the door swung open to reveal two more jailers on food-trolley escort. The male half of the duo rode shotgun while his female colleague asked me whether I wanted a roll on sausage or a roll on egg. Throwing caution to the winds, I asked them if they were kidding. The woman, with a shrug, responded, “Well, if you don’t want it, we’ll just give it to him”. The artist ignored her.

      The finale was a huge let-down. The guy in the wig asked for £13 (AYE, YOU READ THAT RIGHT. THIRTEEN QUID). I paid it and left with my family.

      Common sense? Common decency? Justice? To paraphrase the naked painter, “It’s a load of shite, an’ ye cannae beat it”!

    104. Albamac says:

      Post fails – ‘no connection to server’ but network connection okay. Then rejected post appears. What’s up?

    105. Andy-B says:

      Albamac.

      So sorry to read about your loss my sincere condolences. As for the jobsworth police officer, he sounds a lovely chap.

      Sometimes the letter of the law can be cold and inconsiderate,as in this case. I wish you and your family all the best for the future

    106. Albamac says:

      @Andy-B

      Thanks for the kind words, Andy.

      It was a long time ago, but some memories never fade.

    107. heedtracker says:

      Still Positive says:
      22 July, 2017 at 12:05 am
      heedtracker @ 11.26

      Please stop interacting with him, he is a waste of space.

      Sorry. He’s just like Rock. He says vote SNP but never says why. Rock’s like that too, he says he wants independence, but never says why, just everything is terrible, especially likes of National, and me too:D

      Oldest trick in the big T book. Ofcourse I’m on your side but, lets not do that…

    108. Foonurt says:

      Tae yoan jougs, wae thae basturts.



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