Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Two images for the St Andrew's Day strike


A braw day indeed. More than 300k came out on strike and many thousands took to the streets. Even Stornoway and Lerwick saw demos. In Dùn Eideann, the cops made their usual low estimate and came up with a figure of 7000. Double that I'd say.

Amid dire warnings of the strike costing £500million to the UK economy -a fraction of what bombing Libya cost us - we see the usual political opportunism from Labour. Iain Gray condemns Salmond in Scotland for going about business but not Milibland and Balls in London who condemned the strike. What next? Independence?

Who knows what the cost of the Royal Wedding holiday was or what the proposed Queen's Jubilee day off will be. More or less than a Trident missile? Answers to the Daily Mail and Ed Balls.

In celebration of a St Andrews Day of resistance, I've nicked two pictures from other blogs. The above one is from Ian Bone. Was good to see the pudding-faced Alexander getting stick from the Inverness strikers too. The one below is from Scottish activist group Am Buidheann Dubh.

This is only the beginning. As Edward Dwelly said, "Se obair là toiseachadh...


Monday, November 28, 2011

Out for St Andrew's Day


The Tories are in power in London and that can only mean one thing. Strikes and riots. We've had the latter, as Tory substitute Nick Clegg famously predicted shortly before helping the Tories regain power. Now, despite the mantra of 'we're all in this together' from two thirds of the millionaire BeeGees of Westminster - the third one, reptilian posh boy Millibland doesn't have a clue - we see company CEOs and bloodsucking bankers coin it more than ever. The latest stat is that the top 100 bosses in the UK earn 145 times more than the average worker's wage.

 

In true Thatcher the Snatcher style, they want to fleece us of our pensions in order to feather the nests of some New Labour style PFI pirates. Some short term financial and electoral gain for ConDem Britain but like yon PFI schools and hospitals which flourished under Labour, we'll be paying them up for decades to come. 

 

Britain is bankrupt. That much we know. But how come we can still afford to bomb the Libyan rebels to power against Gaddafi? How come we can afford new aircraft carriers? Hell, how can St Michael of Gove afford to send a copy of the King James Bible to every school in Engerland?

 

More than 20 unions are calling for a one-day strike. Even the once effective EIS has finally decided to support their members - but only after thousands left them for NASUWT, the SSTA or the newly formed SPTA - after apparently acceding to some crazy demands from COSLA. RMT, Unison, Unite and loads are joining in the fun.

Go for it. Lets have an 80s retro St Andrew's day...

 

Aberdeen


12:30pm - Rally at Castlegate.

Dundee


12noon - Assemble at Dudhope Park. March to City Square for rally.

Edinburgh


11:30am - Assemble at Johnson Terrace for march down High Street and Canongate for a rally at the Scottish Parliament.

Glasgow


12:00pm - March assembly at Shuttle Street (off Albion Street).

1:15pm - Rally at Barrowlands Ballroom.

Inverness


12noon - March and rally at Mercury Hotel, Church Street.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

St Andrews Young Conservatives get mean!


St Andrews University was their third choice. But now the dangleberries of OxBridge are showing how mean they can be. The trouble is, after the Scottish Tories put a kind of progressive foot forward by electing a lesbian leader, the lynching of a Barack Obama effigy makes the Tories look like the nasty extremists most of us still think them to be.

Of course, 'harmless fun' is a bit of a young Tory rite of passage. Who would argue that the lynch-lords and ladies of St Andrews won't be leading an independent England sometime in the future?

Due to having friends in News International, Tocasaid was able to hack into the St Andrews Tory student electronic yearbook and dig up some interesting pics.

Digby, Jeremy, Nigel and Tristan get into the Movember mood.

Wicked! Our boys are a special kind of Village People.

Here are the boys on the streets, marching for cuts.

Hurrah! Jasper manages to land his plane on the beach! 

  
  Breakfast at Mosleys.


Though we love Ruth Davidson, nothing gives us the horn more than Venetia in her shiny robes.
Who said Tories were homophobic? Here's some post-rugger high-jinks. Ouch!


After all this, who wouldn't be a Brit Nat? Now, if Labour had any youth left in their party, I wonder what they'd get up to?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Some questions regarding sectarianism in Scotland


Perhaps not unsurprisingly, the new figures showing an increase in sectarian or 'hate crimes' does little or nothing to give us a clear picture of what's going on. Also unsurprising is the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland leaping on the figures in order to play up their victim-status. The RCC may be a minority of sorts in Scotland and the UK but in other countries it is very much the right-of-centre conservative institution that most of us here believe it to be. The RCC uses its influence to spread its own kind of hate - usually against homosexuals, women or those who deviate from the Pope's world-view such as those who use contraceptives. On this last point, it should be remembered that the number of people who have contracted the HIV virus due to not using condoms is probably in the millions.

First question is, 'Who really gets offended by so-called sectarian abuse?'

Like many Scots, I have a fair bit of Irish blood in my family tree on both sides and of both 'sects'. Despite a standard Scots Presbyterian upbringing in a non-denominational state school as well as occasional attendance at the local Presbyterian smiling school, I don't think of myself as a 'Proddie'. Indeed, I'm an atheist. Further to that, as I also have an interest in Celtic-based politics and Gaelic language, wish to see a united Ireland and independent Scotland, I guess I could also be called a 'Fenian'. So, if I were to be insulted by someone, would I be a dour Presbyterian, Fenian barsteward or a dangerous godless atheist?

In the figures, it seems as if almost half of the offences were committed against police officers. Now, the obvious question to that is, 'How the fck does one tell a Proddie from a Catholic police officer?' Perhaps, officers are obliged to introduce themselves first. So, if the polisman says 'Hi, my name is Seumas MacNeill', how am i to know if the man is a MacNeill from Catholic Barra or a Church of Scotland one from Colonsay? If he says, 'I am PC Maginnis', should I ask if he's an Ulster Unionist Maginnis or a Sinn-Fein one?

A further 10% were hospital staff, bouncers and taxi drivers. As with the cops, how is one meant to determine to which branch of Christianity your nurse or taxi driver adheres?

I'd also be interested in knowing how many of these victims were actually religious in the sense of attending church regularly, praying at night and not masturbating?

We are also told that 'only' one-third of charges were made at football grounds. But, I'd be interested in finding out, if possible, how many of those arrested, anywhere, were followers of one of the Old Firm clubs.

The Lord is our fkn shepherd, we shall not want.
Nil by Mouth also spoke of the need for 'nationwide' action as all but five of Scotland's local authorities had persons with convictions. Again, I wonder what percentage of convictions occurred in the authorities closest to Glasgow and its twin hornets nests of Ibrox and Celtic Park. And, as above, how many of those arrested in any authority were Old Firm fans?

I also notice that the Western Isles were among the authorities that were 'clean' regarding religious hatred. This too is strange. Not because of the ordinary locals who in some places like Benbecula go to different churches but send their kids to the same non-denom school but because of the words of those in the pulpits. I'm sure that a leisurely Google search will soon throw up statements from the various Presbyterian sects regarding the Pope being the Antichrist or else about 'heathen' Muslims threatening our way of life. Surely this is religious sectarianism in its purest form? 

Why should the Wee Frees - who know their mumbo jumbo inside out - get off while thick fitba fans who have never darkened the interior of a church are convicted of 'religious' hate offences?

If we are to move forward, we should treat tribal football-based hate crime for what it is. Equally though we should seek to remove real religion from public life as far as possible. This means no 'faith' schools run on public money - be they Catholic or Muslim. This also means an end to 'religious observance' in non-denominational schools.
All in all, this sorry saga is proof of Scotland's present backward status in some parts of our society. We can't blame it all on the Union and it isn't all doom and gloom but if ever there was a time to strive to emulate the civilised, prosperous and egalitarian nature of Norway -gun-toting conservatives excluded - then this is it. Not to mention the more marginalised nature of religion in our neighbour to the north.

Fuck religion. All of it.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Scottish Cenobite and Unionist Party versus botulism

Toxicity has taken hold in Scotland. Loyd Grossman has flooded Alba with jars of botulism sauce in a desperate attempt to overtake the Tories in the popularity stakes. The Tories have revelled in their sickness for years like a collective Dennis Nilsen. However, the turkey jowled Murdo Fraser thought it time to kill of the toxicity of the Tories by whisking them in an autoclave. Some thought it a clever ploy, to kill of the Tories by name and reinvent them as something even more sinister - Bavarian nationalists!  Fraser though just nicked his idea from the Wiki entry on botulism:
Conservatism can be prevented by killing the spores by pressure cooking or autoclaving at 121 °C (250 °F) for 3 minutes or providing conditions that prevent the spores from growing. The toxin itself is destroyed by normal cooking processes - that is, boiling for a few minutes.
Instead, a narrow majority of Tories kept hold of their spores and went radical. The appointment of Ruth Davidson is a bold step. Here is a senior Tory who is open about her sexuality, unlike half of the Tory cabinet in London. This is indeed momentous. This is the party who introduced the Section (Clause) 28 law which attempted to ban the 'teaching' of homosexuality in schools - an attempt to introduce it into Britain's zoos to stop homosexual behaviour amongst monkeys, penguins and even dragonflies narrowly failed. The Tories while having become more gay-friendly are still intent on shoving 'family values' down people's throats though. At a time of cuts, they are proposing tax-breaks for those who 'choose' to get married.

Whatever, it has to be said that it was refreshing to have a Tory leadership contest whereby the openly gay, or otherwise, candidates didn't suddenly get married to a hitherto unheard of 'long-term' partner of the opposite sex thus satisfying the cravings of the Daily Mail types who are the 'life' blood of the party.

Scottish Tories go all out for votes with new leader
What may be good for society is probably bad for Tories though and sure enough, the cracks are already showing. Within hours, Catholic conservative and self-proclaimed Celtic FC czar Paul McBride QC had resigned. The Pope's continued hostility to homosexuality was wisely not mentioned as a reason and instead, Paul the Victim merely stated that Davidson was 'not a very nice woman' and observed that 87% of the Scots electorate despise the party. Certainly, it hard to see this situation improving. With a party in disarray and a new leader who looks like the infamous Cenobite Chatterteeth from Hellraiser, their electoral fortunes are doomed to sink even further. Good riddance to them.

This would of course leave the way clear for Grossman's Botulism Party to fill that third position in Scottish politics and leave the less popular Tories/ Lib Dems fighting for the scraps at the bottom of the heap along with other anti-social irritants such as those who stick fireworks into kitten's tooshies.