Experienced Labour activist Andrew Cochrane says the SNP is hamstrung by its constitutional fixation, while Labour has values and is capable of listening and learning. 


With no coherent philosophy to rely on to help bring them back beyond agreeing on wanting independence, the SNP are in trouble. Reflective observers have been spotted at their conference, but there’s nothing to build on. Let’s make sure they stay that way. 

Being a political magpie can be fun, but if that’s all you’ve got to draw when you face a reverse like losing a referendum on your guiding purpose, then you’re in deep trouble. 

Labour has had good times and bad. We’ve had clauses added and removed from our constitution, but each time there have been values to argue about how to implement them. We’re not peddling a miracle cure to impose on all situations, and we’re not afraid to listen to and learn from voters, even when it can feel a bit scary.

When we get into power we change things. We devolve power, we raise incomes for the lowest earners, we put ending poverty, disease and want at the heart of what we do. When the SNP do anything it’s all about independence. It’s all calculation and no principle.

When Scottish Labour voted to reform Scottish councils we ended our own dominance brought about by first past the post. We put the country above our party because that was the right thing to do.  We didn’t then, and don’t now, confuse the needs of the party and the country as so many in the SNP do.

I think that leaves us in a position where the SNP are in government, but aren’t in control. There’s nothing they wouldn’t drop in a heartbeat if they got another chance to hold a referendum on independence, but until then, we’re all treading water while they virtue signal.

Worse for them, is that the debate about how to improve lives is shifted back to a left/right, Labour/Conservative dynamic.

Our next leader has two tasks: show up the SNP as the clanging bells that they are, and show that our vision of a state that invests and cares is better than the Tories’ proposal of one that puts the ideology of a small state above the needs of the people. 

Having had some tough times, those of us who’ve stuck with the party through thick and thin – and those who are coming back for any number of reasons – have got a party that has values worth fighting for. The chance to put us back into power is one we must take together.

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43 thoughts on “The SNP have become boring

  1. “A party……….. worth fighting for”. Is that why the two candidates for branch office flunky are at each others throats, with more outlandish and bizarre assertions every day? Split between right and left, between Corbynites and Blairites, yet when warship building on the Clyde is being sold down the river by Labour’s old Tory chums, all we hear is …….silence.
    Labour believes in, and “nominates” people for, the House of Lords. Though it has promised to abolish it for over a hundred years.
    Labour believes in public ownership, though in government it privatises all it can, including health and education by instalments.
    labour believes in social investment, though it went with PPI/PPP schemes which have cost the public a fortune to build, and which are struggling to stand up—some of them full of children.
    Labour believes in Home Rule though it has fought to prevent every new devolution proposal put forward from ever seeing the light of day. yet whine like children when the lack of these same powers prevents the Tories from abusing the poorest people in the country.
    Oh, Labour shouts—-more taxation, use *THE POWERS* blah, blah. Yet they wont say by how much all their proposals would cost ordinary workers in EXTRA taxes. These are workers whose standard of living has DECLINED in the last decade. But its OK. Labourites live on the public purse, by and large.

    1. “prevents the Tories” should read–prevents THE FIGHT AGAINST the Tories from abusing……………….sorry, slipshod proof reading by the staff (me).

    2. Hi Gavin, thanks for commenting – on the points you’ve raised I’d say a leadership election is a chance for candidates to try and stand out. One where both agreed with each other would in fact be a missed opportunity. I don’t share your summary of the debate, but that’s your prerogative. The HoL is materially different in composition now vs 100 years ago because of Labour. A second and revising chamber is a common democratic norm, and can improve legislation, even if imperfect . Labour introduced the Welsh Assembly, Scottish Parliament, NI assembly- I don’t accept your argument on home rule rings true. The question on more taxes – our 2016 manifesto was quite clear with a focus on kids not cuts – if you want answers to your question on the costs you could look there.

      All the best

      1. Thanks for your reply Andy, but……………………
        We don’t want leadership candidates to agree, but disagreements should be on policy issues, not the nonsense these two ex-public schoolboys are involved with.
        HoL…”common democratic norm”. That hits the nail on the head. It is patently NOT democratic, or representative in any normal meaning of the word.
        The Smith Commission. Labour blocked every extension of proposed new powers to Holyrood, that gave fiscal leverage, social elbow room, constitutional certainty. There was “no modern Home Rule(Brown)”, “no Devo Max(Darling)”, “no nearest thing to federalism(Brown)”.
        I’m afraid you have by passed the taxation question. Jackie Bailie was at it again this week—“Use the powers of the Parliament” i.e raise taxation.
        By how much does Labour propose to raise taxation on workers scunnered by declining living standards? Is Corbyn’s £80,000 base not applicable to Scotland?

        1. Gavin, I said second and revising chambers were the democratic norm, and conceded that the HoL is imperfect, so don’t share your characterisation of what I said, I also argued it’s materially different – and in my view for the better – less hereditary peers as an example, because of Labour.
          I don’t control what the candidates say or do, or indeed what is reported about them. I’d highlight that newspapers would not be doing their job if they didn’t find newsworthy angles to report on. FWIW I don’t think candidates schooling is relevant, and I think all the parties have public school educated people in them, so don’t think this is much of a point.
          We’ll have to disagree on whether Smith delivered anything or not and Labour’s role in that. I would highlight that it was never designed to deliver independence, which I think it might be safe to assume is what you would have liked the referendum to deliver – so it’s only natural that you are disappointed in what Smith did deliver.
          I disagree I bypassed the tax question – I pointed you towards the 2016 manifesto which laid out the plans – if you don’t want to read that then that’s your business, but Labour in Scotland have a publicly available answer to your question – I don’t see it as my responsibility to find it for you, having pointed it out to you.

          Thanks for getting back again

          All the best

          1. Andy, thanks again for your forbearance and patience:your willingness to engage. Often in political discourse there is wriggle room enough to allow for polite disagreement…..so
            No matter the H.o.l are a revising chamber of note—-they should have democracy as a basis for their very existance; not cronyism, payback or party consideration.
            I apologise for the reference to the candidates education. They were not consulted as to that decision. Their personal views on the ability to promote “advantage” by finance or patronage is, however, relevent, I would have thought.
            The 2016 manifesto becomes non-relevant the instant a front bench spokesperson goes beyond the commitments that manifesto promises. THAT is the point I try to make—-that Scottish Labour goes far beyond the tax proposals the manifesto makes. Various frontbenchers have invoked the “powers of the parliament” ad nausium.
            The Smith Commissionwas not designed to deliver independence, nor would I have expected it to. It could have delivered recommendations along the lines promised by Brown and Darling. But Scottish Labour not only buried these public commitments, but fought against any serious extension of devolution. They now, hypocritically, want the Holyrood government to use powers they have been denied by Labour, to fight cuts by the Tory government in London against the very people Labour were set up to support(one of the reasons I joined Labour so many years ago).
            By the way, like most Scots I would have voted for Devo Max in 2014, had it ever been proposed by Labour or the Lib Dems— both of which slyly slip in hints of federalism when it suits.
            Sadly, it’s a scam, so Independence is now the ONLY option to rule from London.
            Again, thanks Andy.
            Cheers, Gavin.

          2. Hi Gavin – Little to disagree with you on the HOL as outlined here, but would say that Labour have reformed it in the past, the SNP have taken an approach on non-engagement, and ultimately want to leave the UK, so if you want HOL reform, Labour’s the better bet!
            The manifesto may become less relevant as time progresses, but not Non-relevant – and this must surely apply to all parties – E.G. SNP folk talked about independence after the Holyrood election and that didn’t make what was in the manifesto less relevant.

            An opposition party opposing the government is how I’d characterise your next parts on using the powers. This was a core theme in the 16 election from Labour, so it’s. consistent to carry on with it in the following parliament.

            I don’t agree with your further analysis, and in particular the end London rule line. While I get it’s important to the SNP, I see this in a less supportive light. It gives you a bogey man to blame for anything you don’t like, and for me that’s facile and not a strong argument – E.G. The police paying VAT is something the SNP brought about against freely offered advice from the Unions at the time. They chose to set things up one way which had VAT implications, and not another way which didn’t. However since it’s there you constantly argue that this is a terrible example of why London rule is bad for us, when really it’s a case of the SNP not listening and making a mistake and blaming someone else for it.

            Finally, on a more conciliatory note as I’ve been a bit pushy above, the UK constitution is changing, and has changed since 2014, and it’s becoming more devolved. It’s evidently asymmetric, but you could choose to see the Metro Mayors as a further reaction of the ending of London rule moving across the whole of the country.

            All the best

  2. Before you posted this drivel, you might have reflected on the fact that the bulk of Corbyn’s manifesto was already S.N.P. policy.

    1. Hi Heidstaethefire. Thanks for commenting. Sorry you weren’t impressed with what I’ve written.
      I’d suggest that given this was a snap election, it’d be enormously surprising if any party had time to nick from another’s manifesto in the time available – you can check the dates of release, but in 2015 & 2016 I think you’ll find the SNP waited til Labour’s manifesto was out before releasing theirs with remarkably similar policies, so if your comment has any validity it runs both ways

      All the best Andy

      1. Hi Mike

        Thanks for commenting. While you may not personally have liked it, the increase in powers since 2014 was an expression from those opposed to independence listening to the independence supporters, but also listening to the 55% who voted to remain in the UK. Pretty much the definition of middle ground. However, as I mentioned in the article, I think Labour has the capacity to keep listening and learning, so thanks for getting in touch

        All the best

  3. I started reading this article until I realised Id read it all before and got bored. Pointing out the same flaws and dishonesty in these repetitive unimaginative party arse kissing rants is getting really tedious.

    1. Hi Mike,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Sorry you didn’t like this. It’s interesting to find out how other people operate – personally I’d make sure I’d read something someone wrote before classing it a ‘repetitive unimaginative party arse kissing rant-‘.

      If you’re feel it’s incumbent on you to review articles on this site but are finding this tedious, then perhaps you’d be better looking at other websites that bring you more pleasure

      All the best


      1. I could say the same to you. If you find the SNP boring then why write a review about them at all?

        Do hypocrisy much?

        1. Hi Mike,

          I wrote an article for a Labour supporting website expressing my current view on the state of Scottish politics, and what I think Labour as a party should aim to do.
          I put forward a judgement on the SNP, and then argued that Labour should listen to the public, push forward a positive message, and attack the SNP for their flaws. This is quite a simple political message.

          You choose to read my article and call it flawed and dishonest, and state that it was too tedious for you to correct, and now you are calling me a hypocrite.

          I don’t see a logical link in the positions you’ve put forward that would warrant that term, but it seems you’re determined to hold a low opinion of me. While I’d hope further correspondence between us might lead you to revise your opinion, there has been a lot of invective from you so far, so I have my doubts if it’s an effective use of either of our time.



          1. You put forward a dishonest rhetorical evidence free judgement of the SNP and presented no actual reasons why anybody should listen to Labour only that we should.

            You don’t see the contradiction in trying to put forward a positive message by attacking the SNP for perceived flaws?

            And you dishonestly claim you cant see the hypocrisy I pointed out.

            Further correspondence with people like you ALWAYS leads to more and more wilful ignorance and deceit.

            Its not as if you’re unique in Labour or any other UK political party. This is the first article Ive seen from you on here but the crap within it isn’t the first time its been written.

            Your shite isn’t any better than the shite that’s come before it in fact its more hollow less articulate and far more transparent than most.

  4. Well since Duncan blocked my first comment, lets try this,

    labour has learned from the voters – that’s why labour are in third place in both Holyrood MSPs and Westminster MPs. (Scotland)

    When we get into power we change things – so true as the whole of the UK witnessed as labour crashed the economy the last time they were in power and landed us with tory austerity ever since. “did you think we had forgotten”.

    As for your deluded rant about the councils, you just lost and now your trying to say you deliberately lost for some higher purpose. Where in outer space did that nonsense come from.

    And I love the ‘left/right’, ‘labour /conservative’ dynamic – or more simply put “red tory / blue tory – red tory / blue tory”.

    I don’t know how you thought it all up or how you expected anyone to believe it.

    1. Hi Davy,

      Thanks for getting in touch.
      You are right about Labour’s position in the parliaments, but my point is that we have the capacity to listen and learn and make sure we understand why were in this position to change it for the better.

      The 2008 crash was worldwide – it’s too much of a stretch to blame Labour for the collapse of banks across the world and in the US.

      I’m sorry you think I’m deluded, but check the numbers. Under FPTP we were able to win over 60% of some councils on around 40% of the vote. By changing to the new system used, it is literally impossible to win 60%of seats without 60% of the vote. We chose as the lead party in the early Scottish parliaments to do this because we felt it was right. No outer space based arguments required here.

      Labour at the Holyrood election proposed increasing taxes and expanding the role of the state. The Conservatives proposed cutting taxes and cutting the role of the state back. I’m not responsible for how you think or argue, but if you see these two opposed positions as the same, then that’s your prerogative.

      Wishing you well


      1. We all have the capacity to listen and learn Labours problem is its unwillingness to even bother.
        Your article is clear blue evidence of that fact. Who else can you learn from if not the SNP and Scottish Government who right now are exactly where you want to be in Scotland.
        The SNP are where they are because they listened and learned.
        I see further evidence in Wales of Labours unwillingness to listen and learn. The only place Labour are in charge and its the same ol same ol in spite of the fact that your lead in Wales has decreased to the point where you’re hanging on by the skin of your teeth. Even UKIP have made ground on you.
        Labour in Scotland moved from the FPTP system because they were beginning to lose their iron grip at local level. Like the Parliament Labour believed they could prevent an SNP surge and direct control by using proportional election. Clearly another example of failing to listen and learn.
        Your replies to people are another example of your personal unwillingness to listen and learn.
        Your trying desperately to look clever instead of thoughtful and accurate.

        I say in all seriousness and honesty I see a lot of self imposed willingness to delude yourselves in Labour because many of you are intelligent enough to know when your wrong and when a cause is corrupt. That means you’re embracing the corruption with eyes wide open wilfully.
        It leaves you only empty rhetoric and drivelling horseshit to debate and comment with.

        1. Mike – If you are right about Labour’s willingness to listen, then my article is evidence that some in Labour are willing to try and listen, and are arguing that we should. I clearly don’t think you’re right having written the article.
          There are things Labour can learn from the SNP, just as the SNP learnt things from Labour, and all parties in all countries learn from others. As to Wales, I think the recent General Election where Welsh Labour increased their vote share and seat numbers takes the wind from your argument against Welsh Labour.
          I don’t see the force of argument in your PR point – creating a more proportional local government system is something you hold up as a clear example of Labour failing to listen and learn. If that works for you OK, but it’s not compelling me to revise my views.

          You say my replies are a case of me not listening. I’ve tried to address the arguments put forward by those who’ve commented, and challenge what I see as weaknesses in those, and explain my reasons behind my views. I haven’t insulted anyone who has responded to me. I don’t know your definition of thoughtful or accurate, but I am happy I have been both. Listening to someone who disagrees with you doesn’t require you change your mind when a contrary view is expressed.

          If I may comment on your arguing style, you are very fond of using derogatory terms like deluded, horseshit and corrupt to describe me and what I’ve said and the party I am in. I would suggest you ask yourself how likely you would be to change your views if someone addressed you in those terms, and you may get an insight into why I am responding to you but not altering my opinions.


          1. I feel tainted and abused by people who prefer to use wilful dishonesty wilful ignorance wilful deception and wilful avoidance relative to harsh language no matter how politely they choose to apply it.
            I pointed out clearly why your article is a perfect example of Labour not listening. I also pointed out your hypocrisy which you failed to address.
            If you believe Labour can learn from the SNP then clearly you failed to mention it in your article which was wilful and deliberate ignorant dishonest shite.
            You dishonestly accuse the SNP of having “No coherent philosophy” Apart for their agenda of Independence in spite of the fact that Labour have been forced to adopt the policies and ideology they have employed in Government since 2007 while dishonestly claiming the SNP took Labours policy ideas from their 2015 manifesto. A manifesto of paper promises not implemented in the one place Labour could have implemented them years ago.
            I feel my use of language is far more moral and honest than your method of abuse and vile corruption.
            I’m being more reasonable and polite than you deserve or warrant and thats only because Duncan will take a hissy fit and block it anyway.
            People like you will change your philosophy agenda and lack of principles in line with the direction your party takes irrespective of the journey or destination so I wont lose any sleep over the fact that I cant change the way you are.

          2. Mike,

            You’ve been quite clear you don’t like what I have said – fine.
            I don’t think I’ve applied ‘ a method of vile abuse and corruption’, but that’s obviously your firmly held view which I can’t change.



      2. Labour have not listened or learned since 2007 that is why you are in the position you are in, and its the lack of capacity to listen/learn that keeps you there.

        labour did not crash banks across the world but they helped, it was their de-regulation of the banks in the UK that help contribute greatly to the economic crash in the UK. And as the Head of the Bank of England stated it was the dithering of Alistair Darling as chancellor at that time that cost a million jobs. If you think labour can hide their massive involvement in the economic crash by saying the crash was “world-wide”, nae chance and no-one has forgotten labours part in creating tory austerity.

        As for the council results it would not have mattered which system was used, labour simply was and is not trusted by the public and you lost.

        Its very hard to see an actual opposed position between labour and tory in the past few years, we had labour voting with the torys for austerity in Westminster, they then voted with the torys and the libdems against everyone of the 50 amendments put forward for the Scotland Bill. And it would be quite impossible to forget labour hand in hand with the torys in the “better-together” campaign, no matter how hard Anas Sarwar trys to deny it.

        And please don’t forget the “BAIN Principle” vote against everything proposed by the SNP government regardless if you think its good for Scotland or not.

        1. Hi Davy,

          We’ll have to disagree on Labour’s capacity to listen going forward. Re 2008 crash. – that’s a whole other discussion, but while you’re entitled to remember all the bad things you think we did, that’s not the whole picture. My point re councils wasn’t relating to a particular election or the results, it was the ending of a system that had benefitted us, but which we ended. Obviously I disagree with your view Labour and tory are indistinguishable, but I don’t think there’s much value in us trading thoughts here – you seem quite set.
          Finally, I’ve never heard of the BAIN principle. However, I would point out that you have listed nothing but critical views of Labour in all you’ve said, including personal attacks on me, so implacable opposition appears to run both ways for some in both parties.

          All the best


  5. Hello Andy

    I sympathise with your frustration that the SNP’s domination of the national media for the past decade has led so many of our fellow Scots (of all nationalities) to vote for and to join that “unprincipled” party.

    Yes, that’s a ridiculous statement … but since you are unwilling to contemplate the reality that people have made these choices consciously, precisely because they feel that the SNP, in both its ambitions (not just for independence) and its actions, most closely reflects their personal value sets + aspirations for a fairer society, I can only assume that you favour the “mass hypnosis” theory.

    As an SNP foot-soldier in Fife, I regularly share polling station stints/ long conversations with a very loyal (she has bad feet) Labour party activist + you’d do well to slip a fiver between our “philosophies”, although we’d probably not label them such. Where we differ is in our sense of how best to achieve that fairer society.

    It’s not my place to tell you what’s wrong with the Labour party in Scotland, but I will give you just one wee hint … if you think that electing Anas Sarwar as your new leader represents a step away from the nepotism, cronyism and corruption which Labour has inflicted on my native Glasgow for many decades, you are doubly-deluded.

    I’m old enough to have been at primary school with Alistair Watson, so I know very well what the Labour party’s priorities have been in that city + the west of Scotland in general for at least the past 70 years.

    Were we to have the sort of conversation I have with your fellow-activist (+ other Labour supporting friends), I suspect we’d get on fine … we might even agree (unlike your suspended councillors in Aberdeen city) that the real obstacle to our fairer society is the Tory party, at all levels of government.

    Sadly, we know that even if they are rightly turfed out at the next GE, they will continue to have their regular spells in control of Westminster, ad infinitum, with all that infers for the most vulnerable members of our society … indeed for the concept of “society” itself.

    Anyway, all the best … I’m sure you are an activist in other aspects of life + we can do with as much of that as possible.

    ca’ canny,

    1. Hi Allan,

      Thanks for this thoughtful and friendly contribution. I’ve most issue with your first two paras, as while I agree the first para is nonsense, I don’t see that as being something I either meant to say or said. I may think they are wrong, but I’m not going to deny that people join and vote for political parties out of what they think are good motives.

      My point in the article is that I think the SNP have become boring – and I’m writing this in October 2017. I am happy that you think independence is the solution to the problems we face in Scotland, but we were asked that question 3 years ago and we did answer it. I know from outside politics that things can be fresh the first time, and less so the second – I think that applies here – you don’t have to agree, but I think it’s a weakness of your party that Labour should focus on, hence the article.

      I think it a fair characterisation of your movement that there are some who would hold another referendum tomorrow and tomorrow until you got the result you wanted, and there are others who want to wait for what they deem the right time. The Scot Parl vote on IR2 being tied to Brexit, in my view fits into this dynamic – trying to balance the two views. If you’ve really the courage of your convictions as a Party then you wouldn’t have let the electoral reverse you had in June steer you off this course. I know the SNP line on the change in mind is different to that I have just laid out, but this is an area, that in my view Labour can profitably focus on. This is of course run of the mill in politics, and all political parties will have people thinking of similar lines that work for them too.

      Glasgow and the West are not areas of the country I know well – I’m east coast all the way, so I won’t try to comment on what you said there.

      Wishing you well


      1. Hi Andy

        Just briefly, since I don’t really feel this is the right medium for a meaningful conversation.

        I feel obliged to defend my second paragraph … your comment that “When the SNP do anything it’s all about independence. It’s all calculation and no principle.” carried a very strong inference re. that party’s supporters.

        To describe Nicola Sturgeon, John Swinney etc., not to mention myself + like-minded friends in such terms is disingenuous … you know + are better than that.

        As for the main thrust of your article, your views are interesting … but maybe you could reflect on this.

        If one’s principal objective in seeking independence is to create (+ maintain, without those inevitable lengthy periods of Tory disruption) a fairer society, why would it seem incongruous to try to defend that society along the way, with the limited powers available to one ? I can appreciate why that might be inconvenient for your party, but it is indeed the action of principled people.

        I’m glad you’ve been spared what the west of Scotland has suffered … I’ve lived in Angus + east Fife for the greater part of my life + my experience has been that the better climate also extends to politics.

        If you are ever in the Levenmouth area, I’d be happy to have that conversation … and maybe also introduce you to apolitical community initiatives such as http://www.clearfife.org.uk and http://www.lmrc-action.org.uk/.

        ca’ canny,

      2. Hi Allan,

        I’ve got to agree about the forum in the main – you need only look at some of the other threads that have sprung up to see it’s not really a forum for dialogue, but I think we’re managing it, so will press on, if but briefly.

        Re the calculation point – The SNP and the politicians named have stated publicly what is in your constitution – that you are in favour of Scottish independence. Words to the effect of ‘everyone knows that the SNP are about independence’ have come from them on many times post the referendum, and before. This is all fine, I disagree, but respect your right to hold that view. My challenge to you is playing this back to you.You favour independence, and it’s only natural to think about the implications of how to increase support for independence in what you do in government. If there was a course that decreased the perceived benefits of independence to the voting public, you would naturally turn it down. I think that rules out a number of what must be good or sensible options that would improve life in Scotland on poor grounds.

        As you mention Nicola, while I disagree with her, I don’t bear her any more ill will than she bears me. However, she has for the last 7 years described people like me, and political leaders of my party as people who ‘talk Scotland down’. While I’ve tried to address the challenge you’ve made to me about how I’ve addressed you and your party, I can’t feel overly sorry for you, as you’ve certainly given as good, if not much more than you’re getting from me here. I’m a first time blogger, Nicola was your deputy and is now your leader – there is a disparity in the influence our voices carry entirely in her favour.

        I obviously don’t share your goal of an independent fairer society, I think a fairer society doesn’t need indy, However, on some of the threads – possibly with you, certainly with others, I’ve been told that Labour needs to stop going on about ‘use the powers’. The only reason that we’re able to do that is that you’re not. The only tax power you have proposed changing in to cut Air Passenger duty. I recognise your ‘we’ve only got limited powers’ argument, but to go back to my original article, my view is that this is now a boring argument – so to my mind that’s been reflected in what I wrote.

        I’m quite content that reasonable people can differ, but am happy to focus in on what and where the actual differences lie.

        Will bear your kind offer in mind, and have a look at those sites

        All the best

  6. As a member of the labour party I would like to say its not enough to just say the SNP are boring
    Their problem if it is one they have been in power for 10 years.
    The programme for Scotland I would ask why have they not done it before.
    Yes they have been hung up on Indy . We have been accusing them of not doing the day job .
    On Indy some very deep thinking I think has been done on that.
    It is in effect of the table .The newbies who joined after 14 are being told in public by amongst others Kenny MacKaskill and Jim Sillars be patient listen to older members . Learn and be seen to govern effectively . And btw do a lot more on behalf of the party. There is a lot of detailed planning going on regarding winning the next ref
    It involves dumping Scotland does everything better .The day job I believe the Scottish Government are now very firmly focused on it .
    They are about to raise tax levels . They are about to face pay demands they are going to be dealing with some benefits The fallout from Brexit etc . Doing it wont make them popular .But that’s what Governments have to do.
    I was at the public meeting of the Annual Ayrshire and Arran Health Board review 2017 chaired by Shona Robison Health Secretary On Friday at Crosshouse Hospital
    I have never been to anything like that before its why I went . I thought it would be empty
    Wrong packed with patients and health professionals .When the patients spoke it was heartbraking .
    People working in the hospital spoke about Staff shortages .
    That was something acknowledged by the Managing Director who in his report spoke about staff shortages right across Ayrshire and Arran .
    There are recruitment and staff shortages in Dentistry GPS Nursing and other areas . We were told that in the hospitals they cannot recruit for key posts .In my opinion it would help if we got rid of some of the suits .
    Shona said she was involved in meetings with staff and patients all day and there would be more after the public session .
    We were told a report on the full days meetings will go on the Ayrshire and Arran Health Board website late next week.
    A full Audio report of the public meeting either at the same time or the start of the following week.
    That meeting at times was brutal .But it was very honest
    Labour again we are in a leadership election we did not want .
    Well after watching the Scotland tonight programme .
    Maybe someone from one the teams will tell me why an internal leadership election debate had to be conducted in front of tv cameras.
    The Labour Party in North Ayrshire are doing the day job some of the programme for government is already in operation here.
    When the leadership election is over .May I suggest the Labour Party in Holyrood does the same

    1. Hi David,

      Thanks for getting in touch on this – I agree it’s not enough, but a short article has to try and keep focused, otherwise you try to say lots of things but end up not saying any of them clearly. The example you outline re health is a very powerful one, and one that I think we as a party should focus on. I also share your views on us getting on with things!

      All the best


      1. Thanks for your reply Andy .
        The health review meeting I went to I went because I saw it advertised in the local paper.
        I phoned the hospital to tell them I was coming with portable oxygen .
        I as was everyone else was treated with great courtesy by the staff . We were all shown to seats A man at the meeting a cancer sufferer was very upset telling the meeting he has to travel from his home in Dalmelington to Cross house for his treatment . He cant use the cancer unit In Ayr because its closed due to staff shortages .
        He apologized for being upset and not being able to stand to speak due to being in a wheelchair
        I felt we should be apologizing to him.
        All of us should be trying to find out whats happening there .
        Even to find out if its true
        To be fair the Health Secretary after the meeting went over when the meeting finished . And spoke to the chap
        When leaving I spoke to the Health Secretary she does not know me .She was standing on her own I said Shona can you do me a favour .She said if I can I said sort the cancer thing out for that guy She said I will .
        I am taking that as she will
        I think this will hit the papers

  7. As satire, this article is spot on. As analysis, it is wishful thinking at best. How many times has a Labour “blogger” written an essentially identical article to this over the last ten years, only to be proved entirely wrong when the “dream” is tested in the real world? Too often to count.

    1. Hi there Me Bungo Pony

      Thanks for the comment – obviously I disagree with your analysis. As a first time blogger, I’m aware I’ve limited ability to make my analysis come true. There are a range of moving pieces that no one has full control over that can end up shaping what happens. Time will tell

      All the best

    1. Hi kailyard rules,

      Thanks for the comment. If you’ve read the above article and all you see is what you’ve put above, so be it


  8. Kailyard and bungo Thanks for your comments .I don’t think I did SNP bad
    It was only what I think .
    Anyway I am a rangers supporter we got beat today . Pedro got sent off Celtic supporters have been in touch .
    I know I can rely on you guys for sympathy .
    Think I will turn the oxygen up again

      1. Bungo thanks for your comment
        Our manager is insane the trouble is if Rangers could afford to sack him he might get the Scotland job .And we might get Gordon Strachan. At least he could say a big boy did it

        1. Just watching STV news Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers says a few decisions should have gone Rangers way .Mind you our insane manager has said the team is embaresing

  9. And crazy Pedro is now claiming his player has been unfairly treated . The Motherwell player got off .And politicians think they have problems

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