Dancing on a full head of spin

A couple of weeks ago Labour peer George Foulkes wrote to Nicola Sturgeon in his capacity as chair of the Labour Movement for Europe to complain that despite the stated intention of the SNP to campaign for the UK to remain in the EU, the SNP are still really, really bad. As an unelected, indeed unelectable politician and member of the House of Lords, George trades on the fancy names and titles given to him by his cronies for services to greasy pole climbing. The proper title for the erstwhile MP for Keir Hardie’s old constituency of Cumnock is Lord Auld Socialists Are Birling In Their Graves, and his Native American name is Dances With Polis.

It has been Labour party policy to abolish the House of Lords since Keir Hardie first stood as MP for Cumnock. But George has plenty of good socialist pals in the Lords, stalwarts of progressive politics like George Robertson who nowadays rejoices in the titles Lord Killing Nationalism Stone Dead or Lord But We Don’t Have A Culture, and the Labour party’s very own interior designer Lord Sets Fire To Curtains who thought that the decor of an Edinburgh hotel could be vastly improved with a dash of arson. The upper house is stuffed full undemocratic appointees with power but no accountability in a system that would have made even General Franco blush with its naked contempt for the electorate.

The existence of the House of Lords makes the UK the only country in the world where you are rewarded for services to democracy by being allowed a free pass on democratic accountability. It’s a bit like rewarding brain surgeons with a free lobotomy, and when you look at the denizens of the Lords you might well believe that their decision making skills could only be improved by lopping off their frontal lobes.

The Lords is the totem of the unreformability of Westminster. Labour came to power in 1997 with a massive majority on a promise to reform the Lords and introduce proportional representation. However after democrats like Jack Straw and John Reid counselled that a PR system would mean the Labour party would likely lose the humungous majoritie it achieved on a mere 35% of the vote, the idea was filed away in a deep dark basement along with Jack’s common decency, John’s empathy, Gordie Broon’s moral compass, and Tony Blair’s honesty.

Replacing the unelected House of Lords with an elected chamber threatened to put the hems on the untrammelled exercise of power of Blair and his pals, so the Tombstone Toothy one decided to replace the hereditary principle in the Lords with the only thing worse. An entire chamber of hand picked appointees who owe their positions to patronage. This week, Labour’s ghosts of elections past were joined by their Tory colleagues like Lord Forsyth of Zombie in picking over the bones of the Scotland Bill like vultures, seeking a morsel that they hope the SNP can choke on. This is how politics works in the UK, the politically undead feed on the living. It’s not about you and me, it’s not about the electorate, it’s not about what’s good for the country. It’s about short term political advantage for the ruling parties, always has been, always will be.

It doesn’t matter what the issue is, it doesn’t even matter whether Labour and the SNP are on the same side for once, where Scotland is concerned the only important consideration for the walnut sized brained diplodocuses of the British establishment is getting a few digs in at the SNP.

This week’s issue for SNP digging is the decision of the SNP to allow local councils who so choose to raise council tax on properties in the highest bands. It’s the SNP’s response to Labour complaints about the squeeze on local authority budgets threatening education. The money raised on increased council tax on the most expensive properties is to be ring fenced for education. It’s not exactly the most thrilling political proposal, but then it’s not designed to be.

Previous attempts to abolish the council tax were mired for months in mud slinging, and no party which hopes to gain an absolute majority under a PR system designed to make it as difficult as possible for a party to gain an absolute majority is going to go into an election with a policy designed to piss off large segments of the voting public. You can just imagine the headline in the Unionist press if the Scottish Government had decided to replace Council Tax with, say, a land value tax. It would be the SNP’s garden tax and an all out assault on your herbaceous border. Yoonatic journos would pen articles warning that the SNP’s attack on rose beds was another example of anti-English discrimination. Even JK Rowling’s hedge wouldn’t be safe from those evil Nats with their taxation secateurs.

Despite the fact that it was a Tory controlled council which wanted to raise council tax a few weeks ago, the Tories immediately denounced the SNP attack on Middle Scotland, which apparently is like Middle Earth but with John Swinney instead of orcs. Although we could all agree that Davie Mundell makes a convincing hobbit. Meanwhile Labour, having complained for months that the SNP’s council tax freeze meant that Labour local authorities had their fiscal hands tied behind their backs and demanding an end to the freeze, all of a sudden discovered that the council tax is a terribly unfair taxation system.

There are plenty of reasons why the council tax is unfair. There are plenty of reasons for arguing that it should be abolished and replaced with a more progressive tax like land value tax. But Scotland’s Unionist opposition parties are not the people to make those arguments with any degree of plausibility. That’s the big problem in Scottish politics these days, not the dominance of the SNP, but the fact that the Unionist parties are incapable of mounting any sort of opposition. If Scotland is a one party state, it has become so due to Unionist inadequacy. Just look at George Foulkes, a discredited has been who never was in the first place, dancing on a full head of spin and attacking the Scottish government instead of UKIP and the Tories. That’s all the evidence anyone needs.

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38 comments on “Dancing on a full head of spin

  1. big Al. says:

    Should his Native American name no be “Walking Eagle”? Thereby signifying that he is too full of shit to be able to fly?

  2. jimnarlene says:

    You have a marvelous turn of phrase, an absolute joy to read.

    Lord Embarrassment to Ayrshire nay Scotland, on the other hand, has a marvelous dead stoat coat* and fek all betwixt the ears on his head.

    *If the wearing dead stoats is your bag.

  3. Thepnr says:

    If your in Band H then that will cost you an extra £500/year which is scandalous.

    However out of more than 70,000 households in Dundee 37 households, no mistake 37 will have to pay this £500, it is true that 14% of all households will pay more, mostly those in band E.

    An extra £100/year or £2/week, even this will be offset for lower income houses. If these households have children then the raising of Child Benefit by 25% will greatly offset this. Pensioners will be entitled up to full rebates (pay nothing) depending on their yearly income.

    This is a storm in a tea cup, SG are raising up to £100m to spend elsewhere as councils wanted.

    Basically, the SG are raising £100m a year from these changes. Not to put into their own pockets but to give back to councils to spend on education.

    I can’t see what anyone is moaning about, want to increase services than we increase taxes. Council tax is a tax but this is the easiest way of doing it other than Labours idea of an extra penny with rebates bollocks.

    We all need to get real.

    • Janet says:

      The real reason why councils are short of cash is because of debt, most recently PFI induced debt. And those that whine loudest are Labour councils, still paying for since demolished tower blocks!

      Some councils have debts repayments equal to their entire council tax take. Funny that they omit that little fact.

      • hettyforindy says:

        And of course, we all know who made the stupid, totally self serving, unethical decisiosn to manage our infrastructure using the PFI model, and it wasn’t the SNP.

        Liebour, taking the piss out of Scotland, all day, every day.

  4. […] Dancing on a full head of spin […]

  5. Papadox says:

    Superb Paul, what a bunch of shysters, and the system that was set up to allow this bunch of thugs to operate their scams. Rancid Westminster, rancid Great Britain!
    Time to go.

  6. John Edgar says:

    The whole thrust of the article is excellent. It struck me there are more Scottish Labour, Tory and LibDem unelected personae in the Lords than there are in the Commons. You could mot make it up. I liked the comment about a certain Lord describing him as “a discredited has been who never was in the first place.” That must rank as classic quiet, incisive invective.

  7. xsticks says:

    “the idea was filed away in a deep dark basement along with”

    the Megrahi files, the dunblane files, the McCrone Report, any number of paedophiles & paedophile ring reports & enquiries and the Chilcott Report. Did I forget any. I’m sure there’s more that I don’t know about too.

    Davie Mundell is an orc in hobbit’s clothing.

    Spot on Mr Kavanagh.

  8. Albawoman says:

    Lord Tommy McEvoy who was the one they sent to the palace to be a hostage while the Queen made her speech. She always sent him back to his pals in Westminster. Nae wonder.

  9. macart763M says:

    Mundell – Grima Wormtongue

    Sharp and as jimnarlene points out, a joy to read.🙂

    Snappy dresser to boot.

    The HoL, no friends of Scotland or democracy and having listened more than once to their musings on the constitutional issue, a hoose that would happily see our democracy and our desire for self determination dust beneath their well heeled shoes.

    No one from Labour can ever and I do mean ever, justify to me a Labour peer. Most especially those who claim Scottish origin, they lost the right to address the the Scottish electorate the second they put on that ridiculous robe. Any ex politician who dresses in their grannie’s scarlet blackout curtains trimmed with dead mammal and leeches public funds is instantly a figure of ridicule and more than worthy of scorn.

    Socialists my… squirrel.

  10. Steve Asaneilean says:

    House of Lords = affront to democracy.

    Ino essence it’s no better than the old Soviet politburo or China’s National People’s Congress.

    How any democratically minded person or politician can justify the HoL is beyond me yet they do – demonstrating in the process that their democratic “principles” are nothing but a sham.

  11. Dan Huil says:

    Foulkes is just the same as Forsyth: both britnat scum.

  12. hettyforindy says:

    Excellent once again Paul. as every day passes, the westminster halls and inhabitants, appear more corrupt, more undemocratic, and more anti Scotland as could be, in 2016.

    Many great comments here, as usual.

  13. Saor Alba says:

    Come May :
    SNP vote 1 and vote.
    You know it makes sense.

  14. Punklin says:

    Reading all this I realised that one of the main reasons why the SG cannot be bolder in replacing council tax is because unionist parties and the media are cramping their style. Of course in theory the SG could do what it likes with its overall parliamentary majority but hegemony and politics don’t work like that.

    As an active SNP campaigner I see how vital it is to win over the unconverted, the formerly labour and no voters. So we cannot simply be as radical as some (me included btw) would like. The yoon media and yoon parties are united in a desperate struggle to denigrate the SNP govt however they still can. Thus the ambition and imagination of the pro Indy movement are hemmed in by the distorted power grip of slab/bbc/tories in Westminster ideology.

    They cannot beat us but they can,for now, contain us. But not for much longer. SNP x 2…

    • Entirely agree, Punklin. I’ll see this afternoon whether the council tax reforms are mentioned on the doorstep, but if it’s anything to go by past S.N.P baad stories, probably not.

  15. arthur thomson says:

    They can slow us down Punklin but they can’t contain us. Every time and every way that they try to seal us into their rotten box we already have a plan for breaking out of it, emerging in the form of NS, exasperatingly more confident and less ruffled than before.

    This is just the beginning. Remember that just a short time ago the only one of us they could put a name to was oor Eck. Changed days.

    • Saor Alba says:

      Excellent point made Arthur. They certainly know the SNP are here now and have a plethora of names to deal with.

  16. […] Source: Dancing on a full head of spin […]

  17. Guga says:

    Forfoulkessake, it amazes me that the Red Tories have the brass neck to allow a convicted drunk to make any comments about the Scottish government – especially a convicted drunk sitting on his fat arse in the House of Lards.

  18. Socrates MacSporran says:


    I hate to be pedantic, but, as someone who lives in East Ayrshire and was educated at Cumnock Academy, I must correct some errors of fact in your otherwise excellent piece.

    James Keir Hardie NEVER represented Cumnock as MP. At his death he was still MP for Merthyr Tydfil. His son-in-law, Emrys Hughes, however, was for many years an excellent left-wing MP for South Ayrshire, the season which covered Cumnock.

    On Emrys’s death, the seat was held for Labour by one Jim Sillars, before the fact the miners in the constituency would vote for a tumpshie – provided it had a Labour rosette pinned to it, when they kicked-out Sillars (who had by then burned his bridges with the Labour Party) and elected the future Lord Foulkes to serve in his place.

    Those of us brought up in the surrounding villages tend to refer to Cumnock, and in particular Cumnock Juniors FC, as “Scumnock”. Lord Scumnock has a ring to it for dear old George.

  19. ‘I mean the lawyers. The people in the City. People like that. They’re coming in. They do f**k all work in the Lords. They’re picking up their £200.’ (sic)
    Your starter for ten. Who said that?
    Baron John Sewel. The laddie who rose without trace from Aberdeen Councillor (via a failed attempt to become an MSP at Holyrood) to become Chairman of the Lords’ Privileges and Conducts Committee, Deputy Speaker of the HoL, and oh yes, was the subject of a Sun Blah sting, allegedly, I repeat allegedly, concerning a ‘drugs fuelled sex romp’ with two working girls.
    The Bold Baron was reportedly coining in £84,525 p.a., in wages for this exalted if a tad ironic post in the Upper Chamber Pot, plus, £36,000 in exes to maintain a house in London.
    His Passport to Pimlico, a brisk stroll from Parliament, in Dolphin Square, which piece of very expensive real estate features in paedophile and spy allegations, was his ‘grace and favour’ pied a terre for £1000 a month, instead of the market rent of £3000 a month.
    Small wonder he was complaining to his £200 a night female companions that he was finding it all a bit of a struggle, allegedly. Bless.
    He is caught on camera rueing observing that he was disappointed that there wasn’t a ‘nice little Asian Lady at the (alleged) party, because ‘..they sort of look innocent, but you know they are whores.’
    There is a view that this observation may apply to the corrupt undemocratic bunch of hangers on who populate the benches of the Lords.
    ‘They sort of look innocent, but you know they are whores.’
    This man has been allowed to retain his title. He’s still Baron Sewel, which presumably guarantees him a good table at his local Burger Bar, if nothing else.
    Even as I clacked out the above, I am still astounded that the English electorate tolerate this corrupt system.
    Still; one crumb of comfort.
    Baron Sewel will have to stump up an extra £10 per week in Council Tax for his £1.2 million mansion in Banchory come 2017. How will he ever manage?
    I am sure that the increase will make him snort, but in a good way.

  20. Tinto Chiel says:

    “If Scotland is a one party state, it has become so due to Unionist inadequacy.”

    Just so, Paul, but this is a complaint you get quite a lot on the doorstep. They must be saying this in The Mail or The Express or something. When you try to plain how the voting system for the Scottish Parliament was designed to make this almost impossible, you still can’t shift the swivel-eyed UKOKians, who tell you that you’re brainwashed. Fan my brow…

    Another great rant which would be painful for any unionist to read. But do they do such things?

    Was Jonathan Swift the Irish WGD?

    Great post, xsticks, especially “Davie Mundell is an orc in hobbit’s clothing.”

    Ouch! And I used to quite like orcs, tae.

    • The same Baron John Buttifant Sewel to whom I refer above, earned his spurs as Tony Blair’s Scottish Devolutions Man. It is he after which ‘Sewel Motions’ are named.The tortured passage of the Scotland Bill through the filibustering HoC ‘debate’, and the HoL mumblings and fumblings will still be subject to a Sewel Motion, i.e., approval by the Holyrood Parliament…my, how they must love him for that one.
      Remember the Vow? It was all going to be done and dusted on Burns Night, 2015. Guaranteed. Nailed on. No argument. As near a Federal state as…Aye, right.
      I read recently that inscribed on Edward I (Longshanks, Hammer of the Scots) tomb was the legend:-
      ‘ Edwardus Primus’ Scottorum Malleus. Hic est.,1308. Pactum Serva.’
      ‘Edward the First.Hammer of the Scots.1308. Keep the Vow.’
      708 years later, we’re still waiting.

    • Saor Alba says:

      Try telling them on the doorstep that Britain is a one party Tory state.

  21. lanark says:

    I have an extremely embarassing secret to confess…..I once voted for George Foulkes! Please forgive me. I have voted SNP many times since but I can’t remove the stain on my soul………

  22. Lord Foulkes’s native American name ‘Dances With Polis’. Very funny. I just love that!

    Reminded me of tribal chief, David Trimble, defeated 2005, ennobled 2006, promptly switched from UUP to Tory, better known, of course, as ‘Dances With Flutes’.

    I see another scaremongerer for ‘Project Fear Mark 1’, Mark Ian Price, got his ennobling payback in January 2016, as the latest Tory Peer.

    Everyone reading this will recall that fateful poll, on 7th September 2014, that YES was ahead.

    ‘Lord’ Price was in charge of ‘John Lewis’ & ‘Waitrose’ which, 4 days later, on 11 September 2014, scared Scots, via a complicit BBC Scotland, that a ‘YES’ win meant higher shop prices.

    Price’s native American name is ‘Sitting Full of Bull.’

    Incredibly, there is no maximum number that can be appointed to the House of Lords. There can be as many as you like. There could be a million Members of the House of Lords. Just think on that. Still think we are ‘Better Together’?

    ‘Bury My Heart In Wounded Scotland’.

  23. Tinto Chiel says:

    ‘Bury My Heart In Wounded Scotland’. But the worm has finally turned, Bibbit, vinceremos!

    Old Navaho saying: you can’t wake someone who’s pretending to be asleep. Except this is what we have to do to make the Soft Noes see sense. I feel EVEL Cameron is doing our work for us in this regard. Three more months of him and Boris rutting like arthritic stags with Ian Smithson Dunk and Liam Foxnews haudin the jaiskets should scunner a lot of Duped Scotland.

    @Lanark: nae probs, man. Confession’s good. I’m sitting here in my Willie Pettigrew SE lounging pyjamas.

  24. Jan Cowan says:

    Good to be able to laugh at those greedy, dishonest characters. They’re harvesting as much of our taxes as they possibly can, while they can. To be sure when we gain our independence they’ll be left scrabbling for money from the poor rUK . And will they subsidize them? Never!

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