Doing it for ourselves

Following the news that the police have now formally charged Glasgow East MP Natalie McGarry, the infamously litigious George Galloway has announced his decision to stand as a candidate for the Westminster seat of Glasgow East. According to the Herald a source close to the Gorgeous One said that the lycra clad cat impersonator and praiser of the indefatigability of dictators was planning to stand “should there be a by-election”. Nice to see you’ve not pre-judged Natalie there George. Not that he has of course, oh no. George is well aware of the perils of casting aspersions seeing as how he’s the only person in the country more likely to run to a defamation lawyer than JK Rowling.

I don’t want to say too much about the troubles in which Natalie McGarry is mired. I have no inside information, I know no more than has been reported. Like a lot of independence supporters in the East End I campaigned for her election and am saddened and troubled by recent developments. I supported her because the down trodden and neglected communities of this part of Glasgow where I was born and brought up and where I still live deserved better than the carpet bagging neglect that Labour MPs have subjected them to for generations. I’d have given the same support to any pro-independence candidate. And I will do again.

Now while the wheels of the legal system slowly turn we can only wait and see what happens. Those of us in the East End who campaign for independence very much hope and trust that she’s cleared, for her own sake, and also because no one likes to see the faith they’ve placed in an individual shattered and discarded in the ashes of disappointment. But I also know that whatever happens to an individual, the hope and faith that the people of the East End have put into the dream of independence will remain shining and pure.

The only way that we will ever tackle the poverty and deprivation that blight our communities is to achieve a government that is answerable to the people of Scotland and no one else. We learned that during the summer of independence of 2014. The natural born cynics of the East End who learned young that hope was something for other people learned to hope again. We learned that it was possible for us to aspire for something better for our communities. And we liked it. It lit our hearts and warmed our souls battered and bruised as they were by the cold dark fear campaign of the Unionist establishment. Meanwhile George tried to warn us that Catholics should be afraid of an independent Scotland while the Orange Lodge campaigned for the Union.

What I do know, what remains unshaken, is the belief that Glasgow East is not and should never be a mere springboard for personal ambitions. The people of Shettleston, Parkhead, and Easterhouse are not a platform for career progression. We are not stepping stones to publicity for a fame seeker. The friends I had who died of drug abuse before reaching 21, those who succumbed to alcohol as a means of numbing the bleak hopelessness which was all they could see in their future, they deserved better. Those of us alive today deserve answers. We deserve hope. We won’t get those from George Galloway and his otiose orotund oratory. All there is is a man who defends the unity of the UK and the primacy of Westminster while dressing it in the clothes of his own particular brand of radical socialism that Westminster will never espouse. You can gild a turd all you like, but it will forever remain a turd. George says that he wants to stand because the SNP can’t out left him. Pity that his credibility out and left him a long time ago.

This week a report was published showing that younger people have half the assets that people born a decade or so earlier had acquired by the same age. We’re getting poorer and poorer. The economic and political system of the UK is weighted against working class people and increasingly concentrates power and wealth in the hands of a few. And it’s only going to get worse. Brexit is looming, and it’s going to be ugly. The people who are going to suffer will be the people of places like the East End of Glasgow. People who don’t have the financial resources, the assets, or the connections necessary in order to cushion themselves.

George tells us that he’s no nationalist. And I believe him. He defends a viciously nationalist state in the name of internationalism. He tells us his flag is the red flag. And I believe him. Yet George hates nationalism so much that he wants us all to remain with the red white and blue so that he can wave his red flag and tout the false dream of a British parliamentary road to socialism that ends in the tears of an Easterhouse mother who can’t feed her weans because she’s been sanctioned.

Unless there’s a mass conversion of the population of the UK to George’s political viewpoint, and there’s far less chance of that happening than there is of me becoming the next fashion model for a shampoo company, then voting for George will only condemn us all to generations of Tory rule, of continuing disappointments, of lost generations and a future where drug and alcohol medicated hopelessness substitute for dreams and plans. But George will again have a political platform that will allow him to get on the telly and that makes it all worthwhile. Glasgow East doesn’t need a personality. It’s got plenty of personality of its own, what it needs is a hard working MP who will put the interests of Glasgow East before anything else. We won’t get that with George. We’ll never get that with Westminster. We’ll only get it by doing it for ourselves.

There is no by-election planned for Glasgow East, and I hope and trust that there won’t be one. But there is a need for socialism in the East End of Glasgow. There is a need for a politics that prioritises the aspirations of communities which have had aspiration battered out of them for generations, where the only aspiration it was possible to realise was an aspiration to escape. But it needs to be an organic socialism, a socialism born of the communities that make up one of the most deprived parts of Scotland. It needs to be a socialism that’s born in the struggles of those communities and which knows how to articulate them. The East End of Glasgow has its own socialist voices, it doesn’t need George’s.

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50 comments on “Doing it for ourselves

  1. Steve allan says:

    i sincerely hope there will not be a by-election in the east end but if there is will you please stand Paul

  2. William Bryan says:

    When it comes to George just say NAW!

  3. habibbarri says:

    I am an exiled Scot. Even so, I am a member of the SNP, and took part in the Yes campaign in 2014. So I beg you to permit me to add my AMEN to Steve’s hope that there will be no by-election, and his request. I am so impressed by your writings, your intellect, and passion for social justice, which can only be approached when we are independent, that I I consider that you would make a conscientious advocate the the people of your constituency.

  4. Ian says:

    You Da Man Paul

  5. donald anderson says:

    Not much different than becoming Mayor of London?

  6. Paul, brilliant.
    Galloway? Arrogance and opportunism ‘on stilts’.

    • Robert Harrison says:

      Let’s remember during indy1 he showed his hate for Scotland and it’s bad enough having anti Scottish twats like Davidson and dugdale without adding that poisonous viper in as well

  7. Guga says:

    Galloway, like Corbyn, is yet another hard and fast Unionist who wishes Scotland to remain shackled as a colony to a mob of foreigners who still won’t believe that the Empire is dead and the Raj is dead, and who want to continue exploiting Scotland and its people.

    My parrot is more of a socialist than both of them; even though, like them, she likes to strut around and be the centre of attention.

  8. gavin says:

    Georgous says, if elected, he will rejoin Labour—-and why not? He is everything they want to be, and they are all he wants to be.
    Arrogant, London-centric, lazy, greedy, London-centric, incompetent, friend to dictators, London-centric, Indifferent to constituents needs, war as a first resort, London-centric, utterly useless, two faced, London-centric, hypocritical, British nationalists, London-centric, asset strippers, Toadies, expense fraudsters, hucksters, London-centric, benefit cutters, local government Mafioso, cheap lying bastards—-oh, did I mention they are London-centric, Scot hating, greedy bastards?

    • donald anderson says:

      He was the only one to win the War on Want.

      • Dave Hansell says:

        A more interesting and pertinent comment then meets the eye there Donald.

        Reading Paul’s missive here I’m struck by the fact that I never thought I would ever be put in the position of putting into print the observation that when it comes to GG I have to argue that when Paul paints GG as a mere fame seeker and claims to believe the claim that his flag is a red one I have to vehemently disagree. And I’ll tell you why.

        In his televised play ‘GBH’ the playwright Alan Bleasdale tells anyone anything and everything they need to know about people like GG.

        If the content of Donald’s comment here is alluding to what I think it is alluding to it is worth relating to my own experience of part of what was going on at that time. Without going into too much boring detail an academic who had taught me on an OU course in the early 80’s was apparently on the other side of that particular battle, although I was not aware or directly involved. Despite having passed out of the OU system and gone into TU activity We occasionally kept in touch through the odd phone call.

        Having not been in touch for about a year, when he had helped me to find a nights accommodation with a fellow academic in order to attend a Conference, I phoned him out of the blue to seek some advice and guidance on a particular matter just as that shit storm was gathering momentum. At the stage in which the conversation was coming to a natural conclusion and I was about to put the handset back onto the phone to end the call it was revived by my academic acquaintance to ask a favour. It was explained that as a member in the upper echelons of that organisation he was concerned about an attempt being made to take over the organisation by a specific faction and would I like to become a member in order to vote in the upcoming AGM? Moreover, would I be interested in signing up for membership any fellow TU members and fellow Union Branch Officers. So I said OK.

        Now, the problem here was because I was so busy, juggling between normal work, new family responsibilities, and a heavy representative workload as soon as I put the phone on the hook I had a senior moment. Everything I had just been told and agreed to went completely out of my mind. I never even mentioned it to my partner. I totally forgot about it. A week later the academic calls me up and as soon as I heard his voice the recollection of the end of our previous call came back and I immediately went into grovelling apology mode. When he managed to get a word in edgeways the first question I was asked was had I acted on my commitment of the previous week. When I explained the above I was told by my academic acquaintance that he had received one off GG’s famous threat of legal action missives over trying to recruit trade unionists in the Union of which I was a member and elected serving branch officer within our geographical sub region in order to interfere an effect the outcome of an internal election of that organisation. Moreover, I was advised that a similar missive had been dispatched to the then GS (now deceased) of the Union who also happened to be a sitting MP. This was subsequently confirmed when the Branch was contacted by Union HO on the matter.

        My first question at this point was how was this possible when I had not only not acted upon the commitment made but had completely forgotten about it as soon as I put the phone down and not mentioned the matter to a living soul? The next, obvious, question was had my academic acquaintance dropped me in it by mentioning it to anyone else, involved or otherwise? No was the reply. In fact, like myself he had not spoken about it to anyone else. From this information the next question has to be how it was possible that the contents of a private phone call between two people who had never spoken to anyone else about what was said could, within a few days, be known by a third party to enable that third party to send out correspondence threatening legal action and complaining to the GS of a medium sized TU?

        Only two logical answers present themselves. 1. Either GG has telepathic abilities or one or both ends of the call was being monitored (there is a back story to my end of that possibility which I will not go into). which then raises the question as to the sort of contacts and relationships which GG enjoys that he has access to information obtained in this way? Interestingly enough, and I make no comment as regard to correlation here, a few weeks later there was a fire, originating in the car port area, at the home of this academic acquaintance which did a fair bit of damage to the property.

        Which brings us back to Bleasedale’s GBH.

        Looking at the track record, with the Labour Party, WoW, Respect etc.over the years everything that GG does, allegedly on behalf of ‘the left’ and progressive policies has always ended up turning to crud. His activities generate bad media headlines and stories in which progressive politics is beaten around the head for and which are easily presented to the ordinary man in the street and the activist as what a joke any ‘left’ alternative is.

        My point is that it would be a error of judgement to view this track record as bad luck or a tendency to be accident prone. My view, ever since experiencing the above, is that producing such outcomes is GG’s role. I’m firmly convinced he is an establishment trojan horse and that not only would the Labour Party be stark raving bonkers to accept this individual back into the Party at this time – because he would only end up undermining the current leadership and everything it is trying to do – but that any community who elected him to represent them would be shafted. Ask Bradford.

        • donald anderson says:

          There was a shadow over his financial activities in Dundee, as well as the War on Want, and collecting money from the Asian community in Glasgow. He legal costs are underwritten by the Bank of Saudi Arabia.

        • Robert Graham says:

          Thanks for taking the time and giving us an insight into your previous experiences and suspected worrying connections with respect to the person alluded to, I have often wondered about george and his total almost to the point of uncontrollable hatred of Scots people who wish for a country free of the baggage of Empire , any mention of the SNP seems to trigger a venom in him , a need to lash out ,its strange for a person who would wish any country on the planet freedom of expression and determination this in his mind applies to everyone apart from his own people , he seems to be totally confused on the subject of a independent Scotland .
          I believe you want to divulge more and Possibly Paul wouldn’t mind indulging you further if that isn’t being to cheeky Paul ?.
          Once again thanks for an interesting insight into a controversial public figure .

        • jake says:

          Re Dave Hansell:
          What you say reminded of something I read just the other day:

  9. pwest9 says:

    You need a bloody long spoon if you are to sup with Galloway. Let’s hope he does not get this chance to stand. His popularity stems from the corruption in Westminster and not from any talent. No wonder he wants to keep Westminster as a political fulcrum, it gives him the chance to strut his pseudo radicalism on a national stage. I hate to quote Thatcher but we should not give his ideas oxygen. This man is an opportunistic toe rag.

    • donald anderson says:

      McGarry would need to have a sentence of over a year before she could be expelled from the Commons.,

      Whether she deserves it or no’ Galloway does not deserve another penny from the Scottish Working class.

      • keaton says:

        Surely she would resign if convicted, though, regardless of the sentence.

        • donald anderson says:

          Not all convicted MPs, whether in the Lords or the Commons, resigned. I am afraid Natalie has not shown much respect for the Women for Independence, or Glasgow Constituency SNP, by not replying to all their legitimate concerns for accountability.

        • Robert Graham says:

          A voluntary organisation set up as many were in a hurry with just one aim independence, and probably the details would take care of themselves afterwards , and before she was elected it hardly constitutes a major financial fraud and capital crime ,the general public were not at risk of any serious loss at any time the only possible losers were the organisation itself and loss of support to the Independence movement as a whole , fuddle and muddle probably played a part , not malice and forethought , then again i know as much as anyone else and thats probably f/all

  10. lanark says:

    I believe George as well when he says he doesn’t believe in nationalism. The only thing he believes in is himself. If espousing some faux socialism or Irish republicanism getshim on the telly all the better.

    If there was a by-election and he stood as a UKIP/Sinn Fein/Militant/Cause a fight in an empty hoose/SNPbaaaaaaad/Independent candidate, it might split the Red Tory vote.

  11. smiling vulture says:

    George — Scot Ref – vote NO stay EU

    George — EU ref – vote NO out EU

    makes farage look honest

  12. Kenneth Shaw says:

    George always reminds me of an old boss I had who had played professional football in a career spanning 17 yrs. After retiring, when he was taunted about his former abilities on the field he would tell the interested party that ‘it was always
    better to be a ‘has been’ . than a ‘never was ‘. I think the cap (fedora) fits fine George.

  13. My Cocaine says:

    “Like a lot of independence supporters in the East End I campaigned for her election and am saddened and troubled by recent developments…”

    This is the most saddening and disappointing part of this whole story saga. Innocent or guilty, the damage has been done.

    I feel sorry for pro-indy campaigners in that area, because for years, they have worked tirelessly, often subjected to insult and ridicule, to convince people that the corrupt Labour party, with its nose in the trough, and its jobs for the boys attitude, was no friend of the working man.

    All that good work has disappeared like smoke on a windy day.

    It takes years to build a good reputation, seconds to lose it.

    No longer can we take the moral high ground against Labour…

    • Brian Powell says:

      I suspect you are not genuine and doing a bit of trolling. The phrases give it away.

      • My Cocaine says:

        Which phrases? Evidence please if you’re going to call me out on this. Put up or shut up.

        I’ve posted on many a pro-indy blog (Derek Bateman, Bella, Wings) and I’d defy anybody to find evidence of trolling. I’ve been a supporter of Scottish independence for decades.

        This is the first time I’ve posted on this blog (I’ve been reading it for months) and whilst I wasn’t expecting the red carpet treatment, I wasn’t expecting this in response to my first post here.

        Apologies to the dug for this, but I’m not going to stand by and be slandered!

    • Rosina Cargill says:

      Innocent until proved guilty surely? I’m with Robert Graham on this, lack of financial control by amateurs with no real experience, enthusiasm over-took control and discipline. My feeling is she or her legal representatives have pushed for a resolution. Why have the police taken so long to act?

  14. Brian Powell says:

    I saw the National gave a two page spread to Galloway’s ego trip. That Galloway is grandstanding with this is not the news, what is news is that the National put the article in.
    Scotland deserves better.
    Maybe WeeGingerDug can gives us an insight into why the National thought it fit to print.

    • Robert Graham says:

      yep same thing happened with the promotion of fringe parties before the Holyrood elections and look what the damage that caused , you often wonder whos on your side just now as with the previous comment regarding ( moral high ground ) i hesitate to include Labour in the same sentence . well spotted and you are probably correct in your opinion of that post .

      • My Cocaine says:

        It seems a modern trend these days to jump down people’s throats at the least little thing. For sure, moral high ground is a well worn cliche these days, but this is the point I was trying to make:

        The next time anybody on our side, and I do mean our side, (despite your insinuations regarding ‘loyalty’) points the finger at Labour, or the Tories, or whoever, for corruption and/or criminal activity, then all they have to do is say Natalie McGarry.

        The rug is then pulled from under our feet.

        Politicans have a bad rep as it is, and it is very difficult to build trust with the public, especially when the cynical minded of them think they’re all the same.

        That’s the point I was making. Innocent or guilty, some people will always think there’s no smoke without fire with regards to Natalie McGarry.

        Hope that clears things up.

        Once more, I apologise to the dug, but two posts in, and I’ve already been accused of being a troll and a fifth column!

        Some people really will fight their shadows…

    • Capella says:

      Actually, if you include the large photo, about two thirds of one page. The text was not too complimentary either though it stuck to the facts IMO.

    • weegingerdug says:

      Believe it or not, The National doesn’t actually consult with me on its editorial decisions. If you have an issue with what they decide to print and the amount of space they decide to give, I suggest you take it up with them.

      • Capella says:

        I was taking up the assertion that they had a two page spread. I don’t have any issue with what The National publish. It’s a newspaper and I subscribe to it!

      • Brian Powell says:

        I wasn’t suggesting that the editor would and it wasn’t entirely serious. Journalists in the same paper may discuss their decisions or direction with others, an insider can have an understanding we readers can’t have.
        Though on reflection I guess an insider would quickly become an outsider if it was known they were giving lowdown on what was happening behind closed doors.

        Enjoyed the talk in Tayport a couple of weeks back.

  15. keaton says:

    I thought MPs traditionally stand down if they’re charged with a crime, not just if they’re found guilty. It’s difficult to see how they can juggle preparing their defence and serving their constituents. But oh well.

    • Robert Graham says:

      Charged with and Convicted of are two entirely different matters until conviction no crime has been proven so why in your view should any action be taken . Would that also include the twenty seven suspected Tory MPs in England ? if so then this Administration has no right to call itself a Government and Parliament should be dissolved with all that entails.
      The total silence from this investigation down south is deafening a cover up aye right as is this yet to be proven case and every other smear case against SNP MPs that has hit the headlines over the last year total PISH .

  16. annabella says:

    George Galloway is a cartoon, real people need real solutions to their very real problems.

  17. Capella says:

    Brilliant article – would grace the pages of The National too. The voters of Glasgow East must be feeling very anxious about the future, whatever happens to Natalie McGarry in court. They have only recently got rid of Margaret Curran. The last thing they need is George Galloway using them as a platform for his interrupted career.

    Interesting comments too about GG’s previous activities.

    Can quite understand why you would avoid direct political activity, Paul, unfortunately. But as you point out, there is no vacancy.

  18. Sooz says:

    The last thing we need is opportunists angling for a shot at a seat, especially when Natalie is still innocent unless proven guilty. I’m not a “SNP can do no wrong” person – if there is something wrong it needs to be rooted out – but since we don’t know any of the details I find it impossible (and unfair) to pass judgment on a case I know very little about apart from what’s been reported.

  19. morvenm2014 says:

    Here’s an article in the Standard from less than a year ago re George Galloway’s campaign to be Mayor of London. If you can struggle to the bottom, you’ll learn all about the great socialist’s half a million a year income, posh cars, big posh flat in North London and friendship with Nigella Lawson, which got him into the Groucho Club.

    I’m sure voters in Glasgow East will find they’ve a lot in common with him.

    • gavin says:

      Galloway is a rich London socialite more than he was ever a socialist. As has been mentioned above, acts as a magnet for the gullible and to flush out the dafties—pro united Ireland while the IRS were murderously strong, pro Palestine while they were being militant, Britnat against Scottish self government, London Firster during the Mayoral election, English Nat when the EU referendum was going on—-a poisonous self serving chameleon if ever there was one.
      And yet another Labourite who claims to have slept in a drawer—–that’ll be the same drawer they keep their principles in, then they dust them off at every election.

  20. Anne says:

    Macart are you still recharging? Hope all is well. Miss you’re comments.

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