Tuesday, 12 January 2016



  1. We really should take these MP's in hand, minimum wage, no expenses and certainly not tax payer bought house. They get sufficient salary to pay for these things right now, many have gone into Parliament worth tuppence and come out Millionaires, Eh Mr Martin, or is it Lord Martin now. Never done a hard days work in most of their lives but able to force people into slavery.

    1. They get 10% rise and expect doctors, who are actually useful, to take a pay drop coz we're all in it together.

      Hunt is worth a fortune.

    2. Now that is interesting information, he looks like he got a surprise every time they interview him, perhaps he cannot believe his luck when he looks at his Bank Balance.

  2. I can understand why they want a 7 day a week NHS, accidents and diseases don't take days off, but it is the snide penny pinching way the UK government is going about it that grates.

    1. Of course they already have a 7 day a week service. There are fewer people involved at the weekend because they do do less routine work then. But as one woman tweeted...If there hasn't been any weekend shifts for junior medics at the weekend, could you please tell me where my husband has been going on Saturdays and Sundays for the last 4 years.

      Hunt tried everything, including scaring people by saying that you were more likely to die if you went into hospital at the weekend... Of course you are. if you are admitted to hospital at the weekend it is because you are seriously ill. If you go in on a Monday, it might just be for an ingrowing toe nail, or a sinus wash.

      If we want doctors we have to pay for them. Simple. If we don't these rather clever people will go elsewhere. German, France, Italy, Belgium spend 11% of GDP on health. The UK government allows 9%, although it is up to the countries to decide how to spend it.

      But that says it all.

      If I'm ever taken seriously ill, I hope it will be in France.

      In any case Hunt is a complete fool. Why he got an important portfolio is beyond me. He was pathetic at Culture.

  3. If you look at what the Government is proposing for junior doctors, one of the major changes is to change the time for anti-social hours to 10:30pm or thereabouts. Yet for MPs, they can claim similar expenses from 7:30pm onwards.

    Hunt's only real talent is that he speaks fluent Japanese. Be more useful in a restaurant. Gideon can teach him how to fold towels.


    1. They truly believe themselves to be the chosen people.

      It's high time that they were not.

      I believe we paid for his lessons, and that the purpose of his lessons were to improve his level of communications with his wife.

      Unto those which have...etc.

      I'm not sure he should be let amongst ordinary people in a restaurant. He'd spill stuff on them. And as Gideon never actually mastered the art of folding, I rather think someone might be employed to teach them both.

    2. There's a quote from Ian Fleming's Goldfinger, where the master criminal tells Bond how to double his money by folding it in half. Wonder if that what Gideon thinks.


    3. Worked with the towels... let's see...

  4. Jeez Tris I started reading that and thought to myself no wonder the Junior docs are striking. Who in their right mind would agree to work a *ahem* 72 hour *cough* day. After a short period of time (classified) I realised that it was a spoof. ... DOH! LOL

    1. Hmmm... I put it down to your close proximity to Fluffy Muddle and Fluffy Muddle Junior. It's not good for you.

    2. Please ... don't remind me. I received a Fluffyette newspaper yesterday. I have not yet been able to get my anti Tory shite booster innoculation so I had to be extremely careful lifting it up, finger and thumb at the extreme corner only. ... LOL

  5. If you fancy a laugh... this is worth a watch.

    1. https://www.ted.com/talks/james_veitch_this_is_what_happens_when_you_reply_to_spam_email#t-97091

    2. If you want another:

  6. John was brilliant.

    I met him very briefly in his office in parliament. I don;t think I've ever met a more gentle, kind man. This is a whole new side to him, and I agree with commentators over at Wings. It's time some of the rest of them got a good dressing down for their pettiness.

    Trying to play politics with the lives of people who have been flooded out of their homes is just pathetic, low life stuff. There's a time to put away party politics and start helping folk.

    It was good to see her look when she got it with both barrels.

    1. I think the best bit about the Poisioned Dwarf yesterday was the simple but unescapable fact that she had asked her supercillous question the day AFTER Dumfries and Galloway council had amended their website. LOL

      Here is the information page that they refused to put up until Joan McAlpine got involved and carried out some serious kicking of Labour earses!


    2. Joan is a corking MSP. She seems to have time for everything.

      I've never heard a bad word about her.

      I've never heard of the other MSP. I don;t know what she does, if anything, but I've seen her referred to by all and sundry as"the poison dwarf" so I take it she's not overly popular.

    3. She is ESPECIALLY not popular in our house that's for sure.

      Dr. Elaine Murray is her name and she WILL insist on putting her wet fingers into the plug sockets with the switch on. I keep telling her it will frazzle her hair but will she listen ... will she heck ... she knows better ... apparently! LOL

    4. Ah.....

      I hope she doesn't cause power cuts getting her hair permed...

      Do you know what her doctorate is? Or is she a medical doctor?

    5. I think someone Googled her the other day over on Wings and came back the info that it is in Physical Chemistry.


    6. Her PhD is in physical chemistry, something Mr Swinney obviously doesn't have,as far as she is concerned.

    7. Thanks Arbroath/Jim.

      That's had stuff. She should be brighter than she is!

  7. Tris

    This is about cuts and I suspect the long term erosion of the NHS to prepare it for selling off, or selling off the profitable parts of it. This government is the worst I can remember and they really are the scum of the earth who are also not being held to account by the opposition and I include the SNP, the Liberals are just not visible anymore and I suspect that if things go bad in May the Liberals may well split in some way due to having little or no representation. The Tories nearly killed Labour, and they have virtually killed the Liberals, just shows you what thousands of years of plotting can teach you. I know some people will think my comments outrageous, maybe stupid but it's how I see it. The Tories are well on the way to returning us to the dark ages and if another recession hits, which is what we are being told, then I don't even want to think about the lengths the Tories will go to finish the project.

    On topic but what are your views about what is going on in Dundee. I was not happy today to see the comments attributed to Chris Low and Stewart Hosie. When asked if they would raise the issue of unprecedented cuts to Dundee City Council with John Swinney they allegedly released a joint statement saying ' it was for their colleagues in the north ', if true what the f does that mean and totally unacceptable. Now I appreciate that the opposition in Dundee are trying to lay the blame at the SNP's door for the cuts, and it comes across as a cheap political shot and to be honest I find it embarrassing the Liberals Democrats are a part of it when we know it is down to the Tories overall, but the response from Shona and Joe were equally poor. They just cannot defend the Governments record and rubbish any suggestion of looking again at the issue of the council tax freeze or reform of local taxation. Dundee is facing huge problems, problems that given the announcement today of more job losses may well take the city to the top of all the worst tables in Scotland, I found it to be crass. More has to be done to explain why these cuts are happening, where they are coming from and certainly a higher profile both in Holyrood and in Westminster to highlight the plight faced by councils in Scotland. As I said previously the SNP have got to ramp it up, they can start by refusing to accept the Scotland Bill and it's undoubted further losses to the block grant. What a mess. I fear for the City now and no amount of V&A's or nice grass squares on the waterfront are going to alleviate the Cities undoubted and very serious problems. Sorry for the rant but today was the first time in my memory that SNP representatives made me angry with their response to very serious issues.

    I appreciate that the Scottish Governments hands are tied in virtually every way and the opposition just asking for more without explaining how they pay for it or what they cut is dis-honest and just embarrassing but our local politicians cannot bury their heads in the sand when they should be screaming at the top of their lungs about what is happening, I actually think the SNP are in real danger of allowing the financial traps to silence them, they have got to speak up.


    1. Yes, it's about cuts for a sell off, and I agree about what the Tories are doing. I don't know if they realised that by inviting the Liberals to form a coalition with them they would render them unelectable in most places... but that is what happened.

      They have set about kicking Labour by their trades union legislation, the reduction of Short money, the EVEL legislation. Effectively it doesn;t matter how good Corbyn is, unless he gets a majority of seats in England, he can never for an effective government.

      I think that the SNP has been as good in opposition as a small party can be. Particularly when that small party has no votes, never mind seats at all in the places where the Tories might realistically face opposition.

      I've not read about Dundee yet, but from what you say then Shona and Joe should have put up a far bigger fight. You can;t have massive job losses in the forth city. It won't do.

      The financial traps are, as you say there. What can they do? At the moment nothing. Sometime in 2017 they may be able to raise some more taxes, if this latest lot of pretty unusable powers go through.

      Put up all income tax and find companies move to England...or increase the air passenger duty and drive flights to Newcastle and Leeds...?

      Anyway, they can't do that yet.

      Dundee could put up council tax?

      I'll be able to comment more when I see what people are saying, but I'd expect Shona and Joe to fight for something for Dundee. Stewart and Chris are right. It isn't their business, although Stewart might bring some influence to the talks given his deputy leadership credentials.

    2. Tris

      I would have expected Chris ands Stewart to say that they would be fighting the reductions on the block grant at Westminster fighting Dundee's corner in London. Their comment did not come across well at all, not for me anyway.


    3. Bruce did you read Pete Whishart's blog yesterday, it is a wee window onto what we are having to deal with, Evel will mean that consequentials we sometimes receive when things happen in England may not be coming North. What I cannot understand with regard to all the ahem Unionist Parties is why they could not envision how they could run Scotland and make a go of it which is a pity because before you go off blaming the SNP blame those who opposed Independence.

    4. Yes, fair comment Bruce.

      I think that the financial consequences of the new settlement will be to Scotland's detriment. (And to the advantage of the South East of England.) It shouldn't be accepted if it is, no matter what Fluffy says.

      I've always been at a loss to see why unionists think we couldn't manage on our own when Iceland with the population of Edinburgh, no oil, and an even more disagreeable climate, manages perfectly well to be a happy and prosperous country.

      Unionists must surely believe us to be as thick as mince and less able than any other Europeans.

  8. Just watched the Tory party political broadcast (in a Chinese takeaway, no choice!).

    Totally uninspiring. The focus seemed to be more on independence rather than attacking the SNP in government (and there are a couple of areas that are worth attacking).

    Nothing for an undecided voter to push them to a Tory vote.

    Doesn't bother me, but I'd expect a bit more oomph from an opposition party.

    I watched Swinney's verbal demolition job. About bloody time too. Far more effective than those who are constantly angry.


    1. Ruth has already gone on and on about it being the only party that is fighting for the union, since Kezia and Wee Willie have said their people can vote for independence.

      I suppose that, if you are an ardent British Nationalist with union flag boxers, you might vote for them on the strength of their absolute determination that London will continue to rule Scotland.

      Yes, I agree. I think everyone was shocked and Murray looked like she'd been slugged by heavyweight boxer. Mind you it served her right. She knew she was having rubbish but did it to comply with SNP Baaaaaad even when they are doing good.

  9. tris and the snp extremists

    What say you to the fact some Tory councils in tory Heartlands are
    proposing to RAISE the council tax above the Tory Governments grant to protect services .

    Meanwhile the snp are unwilling to ask those with the most to pay
    a fairer share to protect Scottish services.

    1. Niko has got a point.

      While I've enjoyed the council tax freeze, following Lab/Lib large increases year on year, the freeze has now been in place for 8 years. Something has to give. My council has cut services and staff. Saying that, an 18% increase is way over the top.

      btw Niko, I ain't no SNP extremist. Cynical bastard, yes, but not an extremist.


    2. I don't mind at all.

      It's up to councils. There is no ban on raising the tax. To help the councils keep the tax down the government has made the support grant larger. But if the councils prefer to put up tax, they can do it.

      I'd not mind the people at the top being charged more... but working people at the bottom are struggling to cope as it is. Of course those on benefits are covered, but only just, and that is about to change.

      Working people on minimum wage are probably struggling to pay current council tx.

      I know someone who pays full council tax of £1,200 and yet whose income tax is around £100 a year.

      It's a very very very unfair tax and we need to do something about it.

    3. As someone who used to be band G I can assure you I have always paid what was asked even when Labour were wasting it on bun fight, their pals etc. I have to say Niko that whilst it may be assisting some people who could pay more, where I have lived with many young families who were scratching around to keep the house round them. When it comes down to it there are people who like my Mum was considered too poor to make more than a small contribution and my Mother in Law who had to pay three quarters of her council tax.
      Both Labour and Tory, are about as bad as each other. I have said that we cannot keep the freeze forever, just think we could have been bringing in a local tax if folk like you had not voted to remain in Tory Hands, hell mind you.

    4. Oh and Niko just to put band G into perspective the Queen pays band H for Balmoral. I had a four Bedroom Wimpey with family room, I have no idea what Liz has.

    5. Very unfair tax, as you say Helena.

      In Dundee the lowest band is around £1200 a year. A massive amount for someone on minimum wage.

      Can't find out how many rooms Balmoral has, but the extent of the estate is enormous. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balmoral_Castle

    6. When did Labour reevaluate the housing stock, when in power at Holyrood? Oh,that's right they didn't too big a can of worms to open.
      I think a local income tax would be fairer, but could be expensive to implement.

    7. I'm not sure if it was here or in England that they started to it, but discovered that a lot of richer folk whose house prices had rocketed would be paying a lot more, becasue actually they were (in property terms) very rich. At that point it was abandoned.

    8. That's why it's a can of worms, you would need to reevaluate every year, at a maximum, to adjust for house prices. It's a crazy system. And there is no guarantee that people in big houses are rich, nor people in small houses are of more modest means.
      So Niko's cheap attempt at political point scoring is, well, pointless.

    9. It's an unfair tax, but as you pointed out the alternative would be expensive to set up.

      We need to find a fairer way of funding local government.

  10. tris

    What can more fairer than those with the most pay a proportionate
    share towards the Scottish Nation.
    Expensive to set up..........a wery tiny nationalist fig leaf
    to cover a massive injustice.

    They said that about creating the NHS the minimum wage, paid
    holidays, maternity leave, sick pay and so on and on
    your argument is a terrible one awful so regressive its
    almost evil.
    Its the same one the English Conservatives have based their
    austerity attack on.

    1. It would be expensive to set up, I didn't say it shouldn't be. But the current system can't make those with higher earnings pay more, based on the house they stay in.
      I've known people in big houses that would make a church mouse seem affluent, I also knew an old bachelor who, upon dying, left over half a million, he stayed in a council house.
      It is, as you say, a massive injustice, and I think a local income tax is the way to go.
      What would Scottish Labour do? Use the money from Air Passenger Duty, again.

    2. I'd agree that the rich should pay more. The SNP came up with a scheme for it but the unionist parties voted against it and IDS said he wouldn't allow rebates or allowances on the tax.

      I really can't see your argument about the English Tories.

  11. Jimminy

    There exemptions based on provable income which mean someone
    who lives in a expensive house but is as poor as a church mouse
    would not be liable to pay a disproportionate amount if any.
    As for me why not downsize buy a small condominium (house/apartmet to Conan) and have some readys to spend.

    Its not about what labour or the snp or who ever do its about
    the RIGHT thing to do which is those who can should pay a even
    When i was young they said you should pay for your elders and so i
    and our generation did what was expected and cared for our older
    and now we are getting old we are now told we should go without
    and pay for the younger generation so as not to burden them with

    so we took on dept to help the elderly etc and now must do the same
    for the younger generation....

    what happens to us ?? we got stuffed both ends

    1. Can't argue with the, sell it and downsize; it's what I'd do if I was in that position.
      I've resigned myself to the fact, that'll be laying bricks till I drop, thanks to successive UK governments making an utter arse of "running" the country, as for the state pension by the time I'm due to retire the basterts will have done away with it.

    2. I agree with that Niko.

      Osborne keeps on saying that we mustn't leave a disaster to our kids.

      So we have to have the disaster?


      I didn't run a bank into the ground. I didn't build up huge debts. I didn't squander money on constant war. I don;t want to keep 50 royals in the standard that they think they should have.

      Why should I go without?

      So you are bang on there.

      Retirement in the Uk is a misery. It's the lowest pension in the developed world next to Mexico.

      Even the UN are looking into it.

      Mind you old Duncan Smith is in charge. It's bound to be a disaster.

  12. http://www.snp.org/the_council_tax_freeze_explained

  13. tris

    Yeah well very good how its being enforced but not why its
    being imposed saying relief to households does not explain
    who are the households or if the households need any relief.
    And in today's uk with scots people being murdered by the DWP
    under English Tory command .
    crowing about OVERFUNDING the council tax freeze is tantamount
    to an act of criminal vandalism on the less fortunate Scottish people.

    1. Well clearly they don;t mean that they have been too generous... they mean that they have more than funded the shortfall.

      Apparently some councils are sitting on massive surpluses.

      They just aren't spending it. And while it's good to be a bit prudent in case something happens, they have overdone it.

  14. This quite an interesting piece of information for the junior doctors but what about the GMC appraisal how it is going to be facilitated and further improved?