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Stalling for time

Posted on November 04, 2013 by

If you click the image below, you can listen to just over nine minutes of Johann Lamont – whose £85,000 salary you pay –  on “Good Morning Scotland” earlier today.

soundwave2

Presenter Gary Robertson does about as good a job of questioning the Scottish Labour “leader” (never before have the inverted commas we habitually put around that word rung so true) as anyone could ask, so no criticism can be attached to him.

But after you’ve listened to all nine minutes, can anyone tell us a single actual fact we’ve learned about the Labour Party in Falkirk that we didn’t know before?

Because here’s what we gleaned:

0:20 She hasn’t spoken to Stevie Deans, chair of the Falkirk Constituency Labour Party and centre of the activities which almost led to the closure of the Grangemouth petrochemical plant and the loss of hundreds of jobs.

0:46 This is because, despite notionally being the “leader” of “Scottish Labour”, a supposedly autonomous party affiliated to UK Labour, she didn’t consider it “appropriate” to do so.

3:23 Johann Lamont can’t remember when she was first told of concerns about the candidate selection process in Falkirk, unable to narrow it down to even whether it was “weeks” or “months” ago.

Lamont spends much of the interview robotically repeating over and over again the mantra that Labour needs to regain the trust of the electorate and put the unfortunate and unsatisfactory events of Falkirk behind it, which is why we haven’t bothered transcribing the whole thing. But the most interesting bit comes at 4:37.

GARY ROBERTSON: Have you seen the report?

JOHANN LAMONT: I have [pause] been given the report, I am aware of the report, I know what the report’s findings are. What I’m saying to you now is – 

ROBERTSON: So you’ve read the full report?

LAMONT: What I’m, what I’m saying to you now, yes, what I’m saying to you now is, that on the basis of that report we now move forward, we’ve put the party into special measures… (waffle waffle blah etc)

We don’t know about you, readers, but that sounds to us like a rather less than convincing answer as to whether Ms Lamont has actually read the full report or not. Look how evasive that first answer is. Three different ways of implying that she’s read the report without simply saying so.

It’s a simple question. If you’d read it, wouldn’t you just say “Yes I have” rather than flapping around it like a nervous pigeon at a cat show? Could it be that the report is so secret even Scottish Labour’s “leader” hasn’t been allowed to see it, and that that’s why she won’t turn up and answer to the members of the Falkirk party about it?

Towards the end (8:20), Robertson presses Lamont on her authority:

ROBERTSON: When you were elected, there was much trumpeting of the autonomy that you had, that you were the first truly Scottish Leader Of The Labour Party, as it were, rather than the leader of the group at Holyrood. What precisely has been your role in this whole affair?

LAMONT: Well, I’ve worked closely and in partnership with the UK leadership – that is, that is my role. We work together, I speak for the Labour Party, in Scotland, and I work closely with the UK leadership.

ROBERTSON: But you haven’t been leading this, have you?

LAMONT: Well, we have worked together, absolutely closely and co-operating throughout this process. The, the, the power to impose special measures on the Falkirk Labour Party is taken at the NEC, and I’m part of the UK party, and certainly I’ve been part of that process.

Johann Lamont is NOT a member of the Labour Party NEC. So what she’s just told us is that she had nothing to do with putting Falkirk CLP into special measures. She was “part of that process” in so far as any individual Labour member is, and she certainly hasn’t attempted to obstruct the process, but she stops short of putting her involvement any higher than that.

johannlamontconf27

In fact, if you read closely, she doesn’t even say that she’s worked with the leadership on this particular issue at all. If you were to ask us, based on her own words in this interview, we’d say that Johann Lamont has been completely frozen out of an issue that has taken place entirely on her patch and under her supposed jurisdiction.

It’s a political skill to be able to talk for nine minutes and not answer any questions. But it rather seems to us that despite her best efforts, Johann Lamont didn’t quite manage that this morning.

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    121 to “Stalling for time”

    1. schrodingers cat says:

      does anyone know of any links between the trade unions and BT? darling, mcdougall etc…

    2. Papadocx says:

      Yes the GRAVY TRAIN

    3. Ally says:

      Come home Special Agent Lamont! – Your work there is done!!

    4. Bubbles says:

      I heard that interview this morning and couldn’t believe my ears. Fair play to Gary Robertson as he showed no bias either way. It’s just like trying to get blood out of a stone.

    5. Doug Daniel says:

      I decided to drive to work this morning instead of taking my bike, forgetting that there are roadworks on West Tullos Road this week, making a 3 mile car journey take over half an hour. The only upside was it meant I was able to listen to this absolute car-crash of an interview.
       
      Listening to her prevaricate, it reminded me of someone being asked to justify what they’ve been doing for the past month when it transpires that they’ve not done any of the work they were meant to have done.
       
      And someone REALLY needs to tell her to stop saying “what I have been very clear about…”, because not only is it bloody annoying say-something-without-saying-something language, but she’s never been “very clear” about anything in her whole time as Wee Pretendy Leader Of Labour In Scotland. Well, apart from her hatred of Eck…

    6. bigbuachaille says:

      Gary Robertson was, compared to the previous interview on Sunday Politics, in much more incisive form but should, in my view, have listened to her confirmation that she had read the report and then pose one word: “AND???”

      i thought this morning that she was just winging (no pun) it.

      Either way, she can’t avoid the fact that a person in her position SHOULD HAVE read it. Many are sure she was briefed as far back as January about the whole fiasco and opted, no doubt under advice, for prolonged silence over several months.

    7. Luigi says:

      “Have you seen the report?”
       
      “Report?  –  what report?”

    8. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      That must constitute a hot contender for the Verbal Diarrhoea award of the Referendum campaign.
      Still, there are just over 11 months for her to beat it, and she will probably will.
      She must stay.

    9. Jon D says:

      Lamont is a disgrace to all morally corrupt and articulately inept politicians everywhere.

    10. Garve says:

      I thought Gary Robertson did well, but in retrospect I wonder if a different approach would have worked better:-
       
      “Johann Lamont, for those listeners who’re not familiar with this story, could you give us an outline of what’s happened in the Falkirk selection process?”

    11. Luigi says:

      Perhaps JL did ask her London masters to see the report and was given a quick flash of the front cover.
       
      “There you go, Johann, now relax – you can tell em you have seen the report!”

    12. Seasick Dave says:

      We certainly couldn’t have hoped for a better ‘leader’ of Labour in Scotland than Ms Lamont.
       
      Truly a gift from the gods.

    13. Adrian B says:

      You need to read this as well – the Rev retweeted a link a few minutes ago.
       
      http://ericjoyce.co.uk/2013/11/man-or-mouse-er-mouse-it-is-then/

    14. beachthistle says:

      The longer Johann Lamont’s evasiveness goes on and the more apparent that she has been (and continues to be) frozen out of the Falkirk ‘sorting-oot’ process, the more I suspect that one of the main reasons is that there are some candidate-selection-process-shenanigan skeletons in Johann Lamont’s cupboard.
       
      She is a Unite sponsored MSP – so presumably she was a Unite (or whatever it was called then?) candidate/union member (despite having been a teacher!?) when she was selected in 1999(?) to be the Labour candidate – in Pollok, a seat/place which in the 1980s and 1990s had more than its fair share of Labour Party factional infighting and selection process squabbles, with Militant and others involved…
       
      Any Wings readers remember anything about it? Or know somebody who might?

    15. Shady Lady says:

      Have just heard JoLa interviwed on BBC Reporting Scotland’s lunchtime news (approx 13.35 hrs) re the Falkirk fiasco and this is what she said (word for word)…

      “All of those who were involved in trying to fix the selection have to be dealt with, and it’s not just Unite….but I recognise that for Unite itself, it’s damaging”…

      Hang on a minute……I thought there had been an internal enquiry into this, and everyone involved had been completely exonerated and there was nothing to see here…?! Sounds like an admission of dodgy dealings, but I could be wrong 😉

    16. HandandShrimp says:

      I think Deans can safely assume that Labour have cut him adrift to float amongst the circling sharks.
       
      Surprised by Lamont’s lack of authority over the matter. One would have thought that she would know the report inside out.

    17. Chani says:

      This clip always makes me think of JoLa calling the SNP offices. 
      Caution. Contains profanity and hilarity. Listen till the end though, it’s a classic.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWp5YeVkMu4

    18. Seasick Dave says:

      Where’s Grahamski when you need him?

    19. Seasick Dave says:

      Aye, Falkirk Wheels within Falkirk Wheels 🙂

    20. HandandShrimp says:

      Eric’s blog is interesting and a good read but the mouse is way too cute to be Johann or Ed

    21. Gillie says:

      It sounds like that Johann Lamont was told what was in the report, no more.  The Labour movement in Scotland is in a right old mess. No one is telling the truth, no one is interested in the truth, no one is searching for the truth. 
       
      The big question is will the police act?
       
      They are now the only ones who can get to the bottom of this matter, for it is clear that fraud, deception, forgery and data protection crimes have all been committed. 

    22. Jamie Arriere says:

      I think Lamont knows exactly what goes on with Unite-sponsoring candidates and how the machinery operates, and was perfectly relaxed with what went on at Falkirk. The shoogly nail is now at 45° and the rawlplug’s coming oot the wall! How she expects to regain trust with an interview like that. (shakes head)
       
      Incidentally does Mr Graham have any Unite connections? Possibly that might explain how they got together – wasn’t the proposed Falkirk candidate someone’s bit of stuff? Awfy close relationship between seats and beds.

    23. Atypical_Scot says:

      The main point here is how important Unite’s financing of UK Labour is. It’s such a massive chunk of Labour’s income, a flunky like the leader of the Scottish Labour party’s inclusion in behind closed doors is simply unthinkable.
       
      Rev quotes;
      0:46 This is because, despite notionally being the “leader” of “Scottish Labour”, a supposedly autonomous party affiliated to UK Labour, she didn’t consider it“appropriate” to do so.
       
      But Johann goes onto say;
       
      The, the, the power to impose special measures on the Falkirk Labour Party is taken at the NEC
       
      Come on, Unite’s McCluskey even thinks there’s more future for unions in Scotland after the Falkirk and Grangemouth scenario with independence. This is an inference to just how emasculated Scottish Labour are.
       
      Today’s revelation that Sir Gray – an old school labour man – openly pulls his piece from the jenga tower in the wake of one the UK’s most powerful unions dissent of the Better Together message (who were very quick to talk up GMB directly afterwards) signifies the Old Labour party’s resentment of New Labour’s embrace of Tory super-capitalist principles to the pains of the workers, and union principles that founded the party.

    24. Brian Powell says:

      It fits entirely with her, “we need to have a discussion with the Scottish people”, nonsense that she has been peddling for the last year, which is followed by no discussion at all.
       
      She and Labour in Scotland are trying to get past September 2014 without putting forward any real policies or statements of intent.
       
      Labour activists, you are being royally screwed by your ‘leadership’, and I struggle to find words that describe how their voters are being treated.
       
      Tragedy, in every sense of the word, might be a starting place.

    25. Gillie says:

      Under Scots Law the term “fraud” is commonly used to describe a wide variety of dishonest behaviour such as deception, forgery, false representation, and concealment of material facts. 
       
      Is Stevie Deans going to take the rap for all this?  I would strongly suggest he gets himself a good lawyer and then goes to police to make a full statement.  It is his only hope.

    26. Dcanmore says:

      Apologies if this has been mentioned already, just passed by a copy of today’s Daily Mail (English edition), front page splash… Key witness’s bombshell in accusation in Falkirk Labour vote-rigging storm
       
      a stain that’s not going away anytime soon.

    27. Kev says:

      Johann Lamont phonecall to Paul Sinclair post interview:
       
      JL: sob, sob,sob “Ah pure cannae dae this anymare Paul. That prick  does ma nut in wi aw they annoyin questions. Yoor answers dinny wurk wi him, am no daein radio ageen….Pit me oan the telly Paul, pit me oan the telly but make sure its wee Andy am wi tho, im comfortabull wi him..I never want tae see that roabertson prick anymare, can ye make sure a that Paul, can ye??” sob, sob, sob
       
      Paul Sinclair: Sure Jo, Ill see what I can do…

    28. Fred Barboo says:

      Perhaps she is not saying she’s read the report because if and when it emerges she doesn’t want to be asked why she didn’t act on some of the detail contained within?

    29. Gillie says:

      Dcanmore says:
      4 November, 2013 at 2:18 pm
      Apologies if this has been mentioned already, just passed by a copy of today’s Daily Mail (English edition), front page splash… Key witness’s bombshell in accusation in Falkirk Labour vote-rigging storm
       
      That is the reason why Stevie Deans should get himself a good lawyer and head to the nearest police station to make a full statement. For sooner than later UNITE are going to drop him head first in dog dirt. 

    30. Atypical_Scot says:

      In my mind the vote rigging to get a Unite member elected is not the main issue here. In fact, I’d go as far to say that a Labour candidate should always be a union member, and as far as by-elections are concerned, a member of a locally important union at that. Otherwise, a vote for a non union Labour candidate is a vote for a party which is not Labour.

    31. Papadocx says:

      Is Paul Sinclair still a spin dr. For slab. Has he been out defending the supreme leader from all this unjustified criticism, or is he masterminding the campaign from a bunker somewhere near PQ ? 

    32. Seasick Dave says:

      Paul Sinclair, what a dream gig he’s got, eh?

    33. Gillie says:

      I wonder what the price of a pint is in the Camelon Labour Party Social Club (Falkirk West)?

    34. david says:

      i love seeing this excuse for a human being squirm. she has smeared and constantly lied regarding Mr Salmond in a vile attempt to ruin his well deserved and hard earned reputation. In her sickening attempt for power. regardless how long and hard Mr Salmond has worked, she doesnt care. she wants to ruin the man. i hate the toxic bastard of a woman.

    35. Gillie says:

      A question or two. If Scottish Labour was truly autonomous would that make things better or worse in the selection of Labour candidates for Scottish seats? Is Scottish Labour, “too wee, too stupid and too poor” to exercise proper control over selection procedures?

    36. Seanair says:

      You are all wrong about JL.
      Herald today says that she has been shortlisted for the Herald’ s Donald Dewar debater of the year award for (wait for it) “a series of of effective performances against the First Minister in Holyrood”.
      Help ma’ boab!

    37. gordoz says:

      Scottish Labour Supreme Leader = Westminster Labour Party puppet, nothing more, nothing less as always.
      Having said that I think she is doing a fine job for the YES campaign overall so don’t think we should be making too many waves.
      Nice to see the BBC playing fare while they are being investigated.

    38. Jamie Arriere says:

      Paul Sinclair, a spin doctor – well, he needs an industrial centrifuge to deal with this hopeless woman. Hard work, but it keeps you dizzy!

    39. Jimbo says:

      Such is Jola’s low ranking in the Labour Party she is not part part of their inner sanctum.
       
      You’d think that some-one who is the alleged “leader” of all Labour politicians in Scotland would be a member of their National Executive Committee (NEC), even if it were just to help formulate policy for their Scotland branch. From reading the list of members of their NEC it is obvious that any and all policy for Labour in Scotland is made in London. 
       
      . Says it all really about Jola’s true standing in the Party.

    40. tartanfever says:

      seasick dave says:
       
      ‘Where’s Grahamski when you need him?’
       
      Probably round at the Kane household trying to bung them a few thousand quid to keep schtum.
       
      Seriously, why haven’t the BBC (especially ex- Labour candidate and reporter in Falkirk, Catriona Renton) not even mentioned the Kane family or their allegations ?
       
      It was their ‘supposed’ rescinding of testimony that cleared the Labour Party, but now they are saying that they never withdrew their testimony. The investigation surely has to be re-opened with this new information ?

    41. Alasdair Stirling says:

      Best bit of the interview is at the very beginning (from 0.29):

      “Get back to the business of the labour party; which is to go out, speak to people,-em-respond to their concerns and try and convince them again they deserve-em-the trust of the labour party”

      The sense of entitlement is breathtaking!

    42. Cath says:

      “Could it be that the report is so secret even Scottish Labour’s “leader” hasn’t been allowed to see it, and that that’s why she won’t turn up and answer to the members of the Falkirk party about it?”
       
      If true, that’s pretty much unbelievable. I wonder if it’s to do with her own Unite links? But even then it would be staggering if, especially at this time, the “leader” in Scotland is shut out from something so fundamental to her own role. Why would they not let her see the report?
       
      “Daily Mail (English edition), front page splash… Key witness’s bombshell in accusation in Falkirk Labour vote-rigging storm”

      Interesting as well. It’s very clear the right wing press are using this as prime union bashing material. I think some of the unions up here – GMB for example – are playing a very silly and dangerous game getting into bed with Better Together.

    43. Seasick Dave says:

      I’d imagine that there will be an unprecedented spate of cats up trees on Misreporting Jockland tonight.
       
      Either that or Glen Campbell will have a twenty minute piece about some AS faux pas with the Dim Sum.
       
      Brace yourselves.

    44. DougtheDug says:

      “If you were to ask us, based on her own words in this interview, we’d say that Johann Lamont has been completely frozen out of an issue that has taken place entirely on her patch and under her supposed jurisdiction.”
       
      There is no Scottish Labour Party, there is no regional Scottish leader within Labour, there is no patch, there is no jurisdiction.
       
      You can only be frozen out if you have the right to be there. NCO’s aren’t frozen out of the Officers Mess, they’re just too junior in rank to dine with the officers.
       
      Johann hasn’t been frozen out. Falkirk was a fight between Unite and the NEC of the Labour party. The leader of the Labour MSP’s in the Scottish Parliament is just too far down the pecking order to count in a dispute like that.

    45. desimond says:

      So while Johann Lamont is bravely trying to get to the bottom of sinister actions within a central belt constituency ( some of her party members silently suspect the SNP to blame), Alex Salmond is out there in China getting trade deals all over the shop and he is even managing to sell Scottish Fitbaw TV coverage to the Chinese.

      This just wont do….I look forward to Johann lambasting the First Minister for yet again taking the Scottish populace for mugs!

      Theres your Herald\Daily Record editorial for tomorrow!

    46. wapirrie says:

      Would love to see Nicola Sturgeon on an STV tonight debate with Lamont where Nicola produces a copy of that report with TOP SECRET stamped on it. 

    47. call me dave says:

      What a lot of balls!   See that Salmond, more pies and fingers than the average politician.
      😉
      http://archive.is/i5A0L

    48. tartanfever says:

      Dave, I’m putting my money on a Jackie Baillie/Eleanor Bradford NHS scandal on tonight’s programme. It’s been a while and they’ve had time to concoct something out of thin air.
      That or the commonwealth games baton is now heading through Australia and we’ll have a live interview with a kangaroo.

    49. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      ‘Where’s Grahamski when you need him?’

      I don’t see how one could answer that question. When has anybody ever needed him?

    50. call me dave says:

      The news broke earlier but the picture is worth the post and in the Scotsman.
      http://archive.is/4COEG

    51. Iain Ross says:

      Car crash of an interview.
       
      Still what I wanted to hear was Robertson raise the issue of Grangemouth. I wanted him to ask her if the Unite leadership had fallen asleep at the wheel and sacrificed workers terms and conditions due to their obsession with Labour Party politics? I wanted him to raise questions over her involvement in the dispute, what had she done or not done.
       
      If it had been the SNP instead of the Labour Party tied in with Unite then the BBC would have been all over it like a rash. When is anybody in the BBC going to actually critique the Labour Party, to really press them and scrutinise? Today was a start but it is not good enough. 
       
      And what are these special measures that she kept banging on about? In fact most of what I heard can be summed as <blah> special measures <blah> moving forward <blah> rebuilding trust <blah>. The only surprise was that she did not manage to get a swipe in at Alec Salmond and the SNP.

    52. Sandy says:

      And this is the woman who had the front to claim Alex Salmond was AWOL during the Grangemouth crisis ?
      The depth of her stultifying ignorance defies belief.

    53. Seasick Dave says:

      When has anybody ever needed him?
       
      Today would be a fine day to start; what with all his inside knowledge of the Falkirk Labour scene. 🙂
       
      He’s usually got plenty to say.

    54. Rod Mac says:

      I watched in dusgust last Thursday at FMQ , I listened in horror today at this woman telling downright lies and avoiding at all costs saying anything of meaning to the Scottish public.

      I have watched her week after week humiliate herself at FMQ.

       I look at Milliband and the mob down there fail to land a blow on their fellow neo cons in Westminster.

      I read daily of people in  distress and fear because of the bedroom Tax and other viscous measures from London.

      Someone please explain to me how 10,,275 people could possibly vote for this Party in Dunfermline.

      I cannot understand how they could get 275 votes ,what thing of worth do these souls see in Labour or Westminster that i am missing?

      Someone please give me at least a clue, it cannot just be blind habitual loyalty surely?

      I have a better understanding of Latin and my best mark ever in that was 11%

    55. creigs17707repeal says:

      I’m confused. At the beginning of the interview there is this:
      JoLa: “…is to go out, speak to people, respond to their concerns and try and convince them again they deserve… em… the trust of the Labour Party….”
       
      So the people deserve the trust of the Labour Party? Why do the Labour Party not trust the people? Or did I miss something?

    56. desimond says:

      Someone mentioned earlier that Scottish MPs, especially Labour will be looking at the fear of losing their jobs. Judging by this, it may not be too long before JoLa and her posse start getting worried about their roles. 

      The scenario of Jim Murphy ( I suspect Mags Curran will grab a Ladyship asap and Anas will head East to a nice overseas role) heading (i.e being ordered) back to re-galvanise the party is a right scary, but very much a realistic, one. 

      I see carnage ahead. Bless.

    57. muttley79 says:

      @Alasdair Stirling
       
      “Get back to the business of the labour party; which is to go out, speak to people,-em-respond to their concerns and try and convince them again they deserve-em-the trust of the labour party”
       
      The sense of entitlement is breathtaking!
       
      Lamont said almost exactly the same thing after the 2011 election as well.  She said that the voters had stopped listening to SLAB, rather than the other way around.  Make no mistake the people at the core of SLAB think that the people of Scotland should automatically vote for them.  These are political monkeys, jokers, and clowns of the lowest calibre.  They now face the situation of the right wing UK media salivating at the prospect of hurting Milliband with only around 18 months to go before the next general election.  The Telegraph, Daily Heil, Express etc will be launching into this mess with barely concealed glee.   

    58. Bob Howie says:

      The Labour/Lib-Dem/Tory MSP are not wanting you to vote Yes in 2014 as they will ALL lose their jobs, they will become Independent MSPs as they are working for a “foreign” government!

      These parties are Westminster parties and therefor cannot hold seats in an independent Scotland!

      These people would have to sort themselves out and form their own party but as they all have the same agenda then they could form one party in Scotland and become dominant.

      The only drawback is they do not actually have the best interests of Scotland in them now as they are ALL being told what to think by their Westminster masters.

      The Scottish part of their names does not a party make because do any checking into themand you find they are Westminster party names not an independent Scottish party so they have to sort themselves out and decide what they are going to do.

    59. Illy says:

      That’s a good point.
       
      When we vote yes, all the MPs from Scotland will either move south of the border, or take over from the current MSPs.
      Who’s the most senior MP for Labour in Scotland?  Still Gordon Brown?  Lamont may be scared for her own future.

    60. TJenny says:

      OoH – BBC news just announced that Alastair Darling has called for a full investigation into vote rigging in Falkirk – JoLa must be spitting blood 🙂

    61. Illy says:

      @desimond:
      That’s the argument that the NRA makes in the States about gun control.  Not arguing either way about that at this time, just pointing it out.

    62. fergie35 says:

      ‘Johann Lamont – whose £85,000 salary you pay –’
       
      I love that part Rev.!
      How can Labour in Scotland get away with presenting such an intellectualy lacking and incapable politician.. think we all know the answer to that
       

    63. jim mitchell says:

      Aw Bless, JL as fluent as ever!
      Seriously though a few thoughts do come to mind, firstly, apart from resignation, does anyone know what the procedure is for  Scottish Labour to get rid of their very own and let’s not forget, very first over all leader?  Given the referendum effect, it would have to be a very desperate situation before Labour, the real leaders that is, would let it happen.
      I have to say, that more trouble for Labour, brought about by their own scheming would really be justice!
      As for, has she really seen the report, I think that Luigi, may have been closer to the mark than he realised.
      As for the sainted Grahamski, those of us who have read his ramblings for a while now, always keep in mind the old saying, when the going gets tough, Grahamski hides! it’s a law of nature shared by many unionists.

    64. Andy-B says:

      Heard some of the BBC interview this morning, thanks for posting the rest, Rev.
       
      STV, did a short interview with Lamont today as well, but it wasnt a patch Gary Robertsons, probing posers.
       
      A small snippet of info attached to the STV interview, said Falkirk has been in the hands of Labour for 60 years.
       
      I can only say that after listening to Johan Lamont in this interview  and watching her at First Ministers questions recently, that the words bumbling fool spring to mind, as she struggles to cover up corruption, in the ranks.

    65. jim mitchell says:

      Where is Labours Truth Commission in all of this?

    66. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      I believe an announcement has been made that JoLa will be one of the panelists on Any Question R4 this Friday.
      I suspect she will be in the process of incubating laryngitis along with ‘flu and a heavy dose of the cold.I just can’t see her surviving another full-on disaster in a week.
      Three strikes and you are out. 
      I winder who will sit in for Jola, who will get the short straw?
      Please let is be Baillie, please.

    67. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Looks like we might have someone (won’t name him yet) who’s up for filming the Stevenston BT meeting on Friday.
       
      Who else wants to join in? It’s not heavy work, we just stand outside the place for the half hour or so before the meeting starts, ask people going in if they want a leaflet with the pro-indy website addresses, and watch as they quiver like blancmanges and burst into tears – oh no! a leaflet!
       
      Come on folks – am I going to end up there on my tod?

    68. Illy says:

      Seriously?  In this day and age we should be able to take a laptop over to her house with an IM program, and hook the other end up to a speech synthisizer.

      Synth speech has gotten a lot better in the last few decades.  Stephan Hawking has kept his one sounding old and primitive because he likes it, not because we can’t do better.

    69. Alastair Naughton says:

      @ schrodingers cat:
      Are you speaking about individual TUs? If so you will know that several have already taken sides. 5 have already come out in favour of BT, while for example the prison officers’ union has come out in favour of Yes. To my horror my own union USDAW has come out in favour of BT. I am not aware of any consultation with members and I will be talking it up with my branch rep and/or area coordinator. I only found out by chance after reading an article about GMB in the Herald!

    70. Gillie says:

      wapirrie says:
      Would love to see Nicola Sturgeon on an STV tonight debate with Lamont where Nicola produces a copy of that report with TOP SECRET stamped on it.
       
      That would be PRICELESS

    71. Robert Louis says:

      Seriously, Lamont is one of Alex Salmond’s greatest assets. 
       
      I know she is clueless, but let’s not knock her too much, in case they decide to replace her with somebody competent – although when I think about it, I cannot think of one other person in Holyrood Labour who could ever be regarded as ‘competent’.

    72. desimond says:

      Did Johann Lamont realise what she was saying here

      “I understand how difficult it is to be a Labour party member in Falkirk now. They have been embarrassed by who was representing them.”

    73. Smudge says:

      I listened to it live as it were and the only fact I’m sure of is, that US plebs aren’t getting to see whatever the report says.

      It must be Alecs fault

    74. desimond says:

      @Illy

      I know what you mean but I was meaning it  more a case that their (Labours) abuse still doesnt stop them, despite the fact it should! 

    75. Jamie Arriere says:

      The Incredible Eck works more magic in China. Sheer eckcellence!
       
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-24805790
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/24806788

    76. Gillie says:

      Best laugh I have had all day – Johann Lamont has been nominated as Debater of the Year.  Gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “something for nothing”.
       
      I think we should all vote for Johann so that she has to get up at the Herald’s awards ceremony to display her unique acting style in mangling sentences as the ‘angry wummin’;
       
      … and to think she used to be an English teacher. 

    77. David McCann says:

      Ten ‘to be clears’ in the space of  nine minutes! That will be the ‘as mud’ variety?

    78. Baheid says:

      1707Repeal
       
      Either way she’s admitting that nobody trusts Labour

    79. Gillie says:

      Len McCluskey told the BBC Daily Politics show yesterday: “Here’s precisely what happened, independent solicitors actually took witness statements from the family and they’re the ones that were influencing the Labour Party to say that the position has been clarified and there is no case to answer.”
       
      Lorraine Kane told the Daily Mail: “I did not change the testimony. I did not change anything. I did not withdraw anything.” 

    80. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      LAMONT: What I’m, what I’m saying to you now, yes, what I’m saying to you now is, that on the basis of that report we now move forward, we’ve put the party into special measures… (waffle waffle blah etc)

      I read that as saying she has read it.

      Well if Andrew Neil can infer that AS did have a definitive opinion on Scotland being given automatic entry to the EU?

    81. Jimbo says:

      @ Jamie Arriere
       
      Aye, Super Eck does it again.
       
      Wait until FMQs – all Rennie/Lamont/Davidson be interested in is: Did the FM raise his concerns over China’s human rights issues?
       
      My answer to them would be: Have you ever done so yourself? Have any of you ever written to the Chinese government expressing your ill ease about their human rights violations and demanding that they do something about it?

    82. call me dave says:

      Bateman; 
      Geneticists from Edinburgh University said they have run tests on a random group of Scots and found that uniquely in the history of anthropology, they lack the gene that gives them the powers of self-determination. “We know that mankind is very close to the apes,” said one. “What we didn’t know was the Scots are closer than anybody else. In fact, in tests we found that large numbers of Scots had actually voted for chimps wearing red rosettes.”
      😉

    83. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      Gillie @ 4:222 pm
      Someone is lying?
      The independent solicitors either did or did not and surely they must say if they did or not?
      and if not did they draw up the retraction for them to sign and leave it to Dean’s to have the signature made.
      Was there a signature and if so, who actually signed it.
      Popcorn and comfy seat

    84. scotchwoman says:

      Gillie – yes, JL’s nomination for debater of the year brings those awards into disrepute. Most of the time she’s reading pre-prepared statements. This looks like a cop out to me, with the organisers desperately trying to find some way of spreading awards across the parties.

    85. Robert McDonald says:

      I listened to that interview this morning and it reminded me of a pupil being caught out not doing the reading homework.

    86. Iain says:

      @wapirrie     
      ‘Would love to see Nicola Sturgeon on an STV tonight debate with Lamont where Nicola produces a copy of that report with TOP SECRET stamped on it.’
       
      Nicola will be appearing alongside JoLa (& wee Ruthie) on Any Questions on R4 this Friday evening. I’m looking forward to some car crash radio, and Johann won’t be wearing a seat belt.

    87. Luigi says:

       it reminded me of a pupil being caught out not doing the reading homework.
       
      She didn’t know what to read because she has been playing truant for the last three months.

    88. Gillie says:

       
      I would imagine Stephen Park Brown, Managing Director, NVT Group, who is sponsoring the Debater of the Year category, must be a very worried man now that Johann Lamont is an nominee. 
       
      Here is a company that is trying to project itself globally as a success story and they could end with Johann Lamont as their sponsored winner.  Crikey, how do NVT go about explaining that to existing and potential customers.  

    89. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      scotchwoman says:@ 4:30 pm
       
      Has to be a piss take, surely?  Maybe there is yet hope for some elements of the MSM?
       
      O/T, but not too much I wandered into the BBC website and out of anything else to do I clicked on the Dundee hallowe’en cake’s piece on FMQ, last Thursday; you know the first head-on car crash for JoLa these last few days.
       
      I think, even he cannot believe what he is writing and if he is nobody else is. I think he must have an electronic book of stock phrases praising JoLa and then a wee algorithm to join some of them up into a weekly hagiography.
       
      Either that or, he inhabits another planet? I wonder what colour the sky is there?

    90. Gillie says:

      Can you imagine the embarrassment for all concerned if JoLa won Debater of the Year. We have to make it happen.

    91. Morag says:

      Either way she’s admitting that nobody trusts Labour
       
      I wish that was true.  The trouble is they can go on behaving like complete scumbags and nominating donkeys to wear the red rosettes, and they still get the votes.  People have other things to think about and simply don’t notice this stuff in sufficient numbers to alter the outcome of elections like Dunfermline.

    92. david says:

      as much chance of winning debater of the year as she has of winning miss pollok. she just doesnt have the personality.

    93. Marian says:

      Now we know what Lamont was really up to by smearing Alex Salmond at last Thursdays FMQ.

      She was trying to take the heat off Labour over their Falkirk candidate selection fiasco but it appears to have backfired big time.

      Appears that at least part of the unionist media i.e. the BBC has decided that Lamont is no longer to be protected.

      Perhaps Miliband is to make her the scapegoat for Falkirk – after all she is Labour’s “leader” in Scotland and she is a UNITE member.
       

    94. patronsaintofcats says:

      According to the Guardian JoLa “intervened” in the Falkirk fiasco.  Talk about tall tales: http://archive.is/dUqH4

    95. Gordon Hay says:

      Seasick Dave says –
       
      “Where’s Grahamski when you need him?”
       
      Perhaps he no longer has access to his works computer and email account.

    96. Craig P says:

      BtP – it is my opinion that the Great Tangerine tries to say something positive and non judgemental about both sides in any debate – Lamont makes him earn his corn in that respect. 

    97. Richard McHarg says:

      @Ian Brotherhood.  Ian, I’m an unemployed Livingstonian, so Ayrshire is too far for me.
      What are the details for the Stevenston BT meeting and I’ll post it on FB to see if anyone can help?

    98. G H Graham says:

      Stairheid (Yer candidate fur Furst Minstrel fur Scotland, right Mac?) says …
       
      “Nae point in readin the report an’ ‘at coz whit Ed Mulybdenum sez is whit wurr agreein wi, right? An’ as long as he’s in charge, am in charge so thurs nae confusion aboot hoos in charge. An’ canna get ma appearance munnay noo or efter the show?”

    99. Murray McCallum says:

      Johann Lamont talks throughout about rebuilding people’s trust in the Labour Party. The fact that she never answers a straight question must surely damage that ambition?
       
      During the interview she says that through all of her political life she has stood up to those who want to abuse systems within the Labour Party. Is that both an admission of long running abuse of systems within the Labour Party and Johann Lamont’s failure to stop it?

    100. TJenny says:

      #scotnight at 10.30 talking about the Falkirk Labour fiasco, an ex-Labour politician set to vote Yes and what to do about dangerous dogs.’ 
       
      Not sure if the dangerous dogs relates to Slab or not 🙂
       
      Also appearing will be Dep Slabber, Anas Sarwar.  So JoLa not being trusted to go into a TV discussion?

    101. John grant says:

      She’s an arsehole pure and simple , how anyone could vote for a party she “leads” ahem is beyond all human reasoning , why don’t they just leave us alone so we can get on with running this country as it should be . 

    102. Caledonalistic says:

      I’ve always thought Gary was quite straight-up but I found that pretty eye-opening – that was a doing.

    103. rabb says:

      Alastair Naughton says:
       

      To my horror my own union USDAW has come out in favour of BT. I am not aware of any consultation with members and I will be talking it up with my branch rep and/or area coordinator. I only found out by chance after reading an article about GMB in the Herald!
       
      Alistair,
      I’m a USDAW member too (although I’m struggling to justify it at the moment!). Neither any of my colleagues or I have been balloted on this either. None of us have ever been made aware of any discussion on it either. Were all strong confirmed Yes supporters BTW!
       
      I too will be demanding an answer on this!

    104. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Richard McHarg-
       
      Thanks for the support. Hopefully there will be footage so you can see how it went.
       
      It’s definitely on. SSP North Ayrshire will be there to greet the speakers as they arrive, and we’ll have lots of really really scary A5 leaflets with us. Yes Ayrshire know about it, but I haven’t heard whether or not they want to take part – if individuals want to help us, great, just turn up. We shouldn’t be that difficult to spot as we’ll have a huge yellow and red SSP North Ayrshire banner – the same one we took to Calton Hill.
       
      It’s at Ardeer Neighbourhood Centre, Shore Rd, Stevenston, KA20 – right at Stevenston railway station in the south-end of the town. Meeting starts at 7, we’ll be there 6-ish. Please spread the word – already have a fair squad lined-up, but the more the merrier, and we’ll be contacting local press to make sure there’s safety in numbers and minimise the likelihood of any hassle.
       
      We’ll be there to offer people leaflets, and that’s it. No civil disobedience, no hanky-panky. It’s unlikely we’ll be allowed in to take part in the ‘discussion’, but no harm asking. Still don’t know who the speakers are.

    105. ronnie anderson says:

      REV, I was in the prosses of listening to Lamonts interview ,you provided time lines to listen to, i dont know if you had picked up on what she said at 5min40 I myself had to play it over at least 6 times, then the internet went down . Who are the NO POLITICAL PARTY THAT INVESTIGATED /OR ARE MY EARS NOT WORKING NOW, After playing I back again I am positive thats what she says. AM I RITE have a listen guys 5min .40

    106. rabb says:

      Ronnie,
      She certainly did say “The No political party”. Freudian slip I think 🙂

    107. A2 says:

      Jimbo
      “Such is Jola’s low ranking in the Labour Party she is not part part of their inner sanctum.
       
      You’d think that some-one who is the alleged “leader” of all Labour politicians in Scotland would be a member of their National Executive Committee (NEC), ”
       
      . Says it all really about Jola’s true standing in the Party.”

      I wouldn’t be so sure of that myself or the idea that the NEC actually makes labour Policy (other than the one that’s written down)
      Here’s an unsubstantiated quote from an unreliable source taken completely out of context.

      “If Archie Graham wants it to happen, It’ll happen”

    108. rabb says:

      Ian,
      Mind and smooth the edges of those leaflets. Paper cuts are a particularly nasty and most painful injury.
       
      Perhaps you should also point out that folk should keep those leaflets as a memento due to the possibility of there no longer being an “A5 size” in an independent Scotland.

    109. twenty14 says:

      Johan Lamont – will be written in history books, 30 years from now as the worst leader of the ” Scottish ” labour party who, played her own small part, in regaining Independence for Scotland

    110. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      rabb
       
      did you have a c before you had a b?

    111. A2 says:

      worse Rabb
      We won’t be allowed to use A sizes at all as that’s obviously a great union idea. Salmond says we will be able to use them but that’s pie in the sky.
       

    112. rabb says:

       
      Bugger (the Panda) says:
       

      rabb
       
      did you have a c before you had a b?
       
      No, I’m aspiring to a c though 🙂

      One day I hope people will call me RabC

    113. ronnie anderson says:

      Thanks Rabb is that Clement F wis he there tay lol

    114. Adrian B says:

      Well after watching Newsnight, it rather shows that if Simon Pia doesn’t think Labour can DEVOLVE power from London to Edinburgh within their own party. What chance have the rest of us got of further Devolution?

    115. Clare Gallagher says:

      In the name of the wee man! Does that wee nyaff know anything? What a useless waste of airtime!! GET BACK TO YPUR BUNKER JOHANN!! We prefer it that way!

    116. Clare Gallagher says:

      In the name of the wee man! Does that wee nyaff know anything? What a useless waste of airtime!! GET BACK TO YOUR BUNKER JOHANN!! We prefer it that way!

    117. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      rabC
       
      How’s the rablet?

    118. theycan'tbeserious says:

      Its a pity that “the talking of SHITE” isn’t one of the events at the common wealth games….this woman would be a gold medallist!  

    119. Melanie McKellar says:

      I only listened to the first few …em…mins of JL on the tranny but I did watch the deputy leader of the LP on Scotland Tonight last night …. Pretty much the same script, no details, no answers all about moving on and sweeping it all under the carpet…very dodgy Stuff going on in our democracy!
      http://news.stv.tv/scotland/247094-scotland-tonight-should-labour-re-open-its-falkirk-inquiry/

    120. MochaChoca says:

      Labour leader Ed Miliband has refused to commit to a fresh inquiry into allegations of vote-rigging by the Unite union in Falkirk.
       
      Former Chancellor Alistair Darling has said the inquiry should be reopened.
       
      Mr Darling told BBC Scotland he believed something had “gone very wrong in Falkirk” and there “needed to be a thorough investigation”.
       
      Has Darling now officially defected to the Conservative Party?
      (would anyone notice if he did?)



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