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Wings Over Scotland

The day before yesterday’s news

Posted on August 05, 2015 by

Unalert readers will have been startled to read in much of the media this morning – including a front-page piece on the Daily Record – of the “shocking” £100,000 cost of renaming the new Southern General hospital in Glasgow after the Queen.


That, of course, is because all the alert ones read it on Wings two days ago.

It’s not just that the press has been rather tardy in picking up the story. When they eventually did, some of them – with the honourable exception of STV – credited the source of the information as the Scottish Greens rather than this site, although the Greens hadn’t said a word about it until 24 hours after we did.

The party’s website ran a strangely carefully-worded press release giving their reaction to the news “in response to a Freedom of Information request”, without actually saying that they’d made the request in question, which one might normally expect.

The party’s spokesman, ambitious wannabe politician Ross Greer (he’s top of the Green list for West of Scotland at Holyrood next year, and also garnered 804 votes in the East Dunbartonshire seat in this May’s UK general election, losing the party’s deposit by a large distance), has spent much of the last two years publicly smearing and attacking Wings Over Scotland.

Greer was employed by Yes Scotland during the referendum, during which time he upset numerous activists whose characters he didn’t consider personally acceptable by doing everything in his power to obstruct their campaigning for a Yes vote.


So it wouldn’t be particularly surprising that he’d want to avoid giving us credit for the story. But when challenged by a couple of readers last night, Greer went further than the evasive website phrasing, suddenly claiming it had been the Scottish Greens’ FOI request all along and posting what he called an “email chain” as evidence:


Readers may note that the “evidence” is somewhat sketchy. It appears to comprise two internal Green emails, dated 4 August (the day after we published our story), with half an NHS Greater Glasgow And Clyde email address stuck on the bottom.

They might also ponder whether, if asked for evidence that you’d had your own FOI response, you wouldn’t just publish the actual email from NHSGGC – it being the simplest and most comprehensive way of proving your claim – but Greer has refused repeated requests to do so, referring them to the inconclusive image above instead.

Now, it’s entirely possible that the Scottish Greens submitted their own FOI over the renaming. Our own reply from NHSGGC noted that they’d received several requests about the matter from various sources. It’s attached below (click to enlarge).


But in that case it’s strange that Greer wouldn’t just post the equivalent of the image above. It’s weird that the Greens press release would be so ambiguously worded. It’s odd that with such a newsworthy story having landed in their laps on Monday, neither Greer’s nor the Greens’ Twitter feeds would mention it at all until Tuesday teatime, 24 hours after Wings had posted it.

(One would presume NHSGGC emailed everyone their response at the same time, and indeed Greer expressly stated that that was the case.)

Of course, at the end of the day it doesn’t actually matter who gets the credit for breaking the story. Nor will it be of any interest to the vast majority of Scots that a supposedly pro-Yes campaigner and would-be politician has expended (and continues to expend) so much time and effort to attack other Yes activists, including by far the most popular and widely-read Yes-supporting website. It’s he-said-she-said stuff.

But it’s a little depressing that Scotland’s professional media, whose content already comprised 80% stories ripped from rival papers and 18% things people said on Twitter yesterday, is now too lazy and incompetent to even steal the news effectively. We ran the story at teatime on Monday, plenty of time to get something in Tuesday’s papers or evening news bulletins, but readers had to wait until it was TWO days old and the Greens had spoonfed them a pre-written piece.

More than one-third of Scots have given up reading daily newspapers since the turn of the millennium. It doesn’t take much of an investigative journalist to figure out why.

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511 to “The day before yesterday’s news”

  1. Brian Doonthetoon

    Hi Mealer.

    I notr the the SNP’s share, 52%, is in line with recent polling.

    Obviously, a fair proportion of that share is disillusioned former Labour voters. We, the SNP AND indy supporters, have to be careful that we don’t make them return to the red fold for any reason.

    Analysis of the results here:-

  2. Capella

    @ Ken500 8.53
    That’s quite a charge sheet Ken. Got any evidence for those allegations?

  3. Ken500

    Just look up the Inquiries and the Inquiries evidence. The Press reports etc. A Green Barrister who made a campaign of ‘Green’ issues, let go by the University, who still campaigned against the By-pass from the North East of England. Costing £Millions. They make careers out of it. Funded by Landowners.

    Google it.

    They can campaign all they like but not underhand and duplicitous. They are so sleekit and dishonest. The majority think they are ‘off their heads’. A common description. There only aim is to make people’s lives more difficult. Every City in Europe has a bypass road and a predestrianised City centre.

  4. Graeme

    Brian Doonthetoon says:
    7 August, 2015 at 11:38 am

    Hi Graeme.

    That’s a decent video! Good choice of music and your selection of pics tells the story as it unfolded.

    Award yourself something!


    Thanks Brian

  5. Rock

    Tinto Chiel,

    “Repeating ineffectual arguments doesn’t make them less so, Rock.”

    Repeating “we are sovereign” doesn’t make us “sovereign”.

    Those who are sovereign don’t go on endlessly about it.

    Only those who are NOT sovereign have to keep on repeating it.

    Like the unionists having to start every sentence with “I am a proud Scot but”

    Those who are proud Scots don’t have to state it.

  6. Rock

    From an earlier article:

    Ian Brotherhood,

    “Rock expresses similar views to you – his crusade against the Green Party gets tiresome at times, but at least he manages to make his points without being quite so insulting.”

    You can count the number of posters who have made anti-Green comments on this thread.

    I just saw through them earlier than many others.

  7. Rock

    Rev. Stuart Campbell,

    ““Rectum” isn’t a swearword. But it seems to me you’ve flung plenty of provocative and personal rudeness out in this thread, so you’ve got no business being a crybaby about getting some back.”

    I myself have absolutely no problem about being called anything, although I don’t use bad language.

    My “provocative and personal rudeness” was directed at those who had been defending the Greens for standing candidates against the SNP, enabling the Tory Viceroy of Scotland to get re-elected.

    My first post was the 172nd comment on the article and was made because the article highlighted the duplicity of the Greens, something I have been pointing out since the May election.

  8. Rev. Stuart Campbell

    “My “provocative and personal rudeness” was directed at those who had been defending the Greens for standing candidates against the SNP, enabling the Tory Viceroy of Scotland to get re-elected.

    My first post was the 172nd comment on the article and was made because the article highlighted the duplicity of the Greens, something I have been pointing out since the May election.”

    Thanks for the stats update. What’s your point?

  9. Rock

    Rev. Stuart Campbell,

    “Thanks for the stats update. What’s your point?”

    That if we want independence sooner rather than later, we must not trust the Greens, and ex Greens, or ex Lib Dems who count Carmichael as a close friend.

    The SNP and Yes movements would both have been infiltrated.

    Be careful with whom you share your strategies.

  10. asklair

    There was a post on the Scottish Greens Facebook page relating to this article, basically insulting all WoS readers, Ross Greer had input too. All the content has now disappeared, someone with some street sense must of got it pulled. Some of the content really pissed me off at the level of New Labour pissed off, thats blowing the gasket on my gage.

  11. Thepnr


    Genuinely Rock how would you propose that we can increase the Yes vote say to around 55% before going for another referendum?

  12. Brian Doonthetoon

    Hi Rock.

    You’ve been posting on this topic since I asked you questions late on Thursday night (at 11.52pm) but haven’t responded.

    However, you may not have checked the previous page before posting here. So, as my questions were along the same lines as Thepnr’s from early this morning, I’ll repeat them here.

    You typed,
    “If WE are sovereign, we don’t have to go through the SNP or anyone else.”

    That’s a fine example of an opinion. However, it could be helpful to the rest of us if, perchance, you could suggest how we, the sovereign people of Scotland, achieve whatever it is you want to achieve, bearing in mind that only 45% voted for independence and that the percentage of support for independence has only crept up a point or two since September 2014.

    So, with reference to your quote above,

    1. What do YOU want to achieve?

    2. How do you suggest the answer to ‘1’ is achieved, without going “through the SNP or anyone else”?

    3. If the answer to ‘1’ is independence, do you believe the wishes of the 45% should overrule the wishes of the 55%, remembering that 100% of the people of Scotland are “sovereign Scots”?

    4. How would you legally and peacefully dismiss the wishes of the 55% who voted last year, to achieve your answer to ‘1’?

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