Friday, August 29, 2014

Jim Murphy over eggs his pudding

Tocasaid is only too pleased to join the chorus of disapproval at the disgusting and mindless violence that befell Jim Murphy yesterday in a Fife town. We trust that Police Scotland are throwing all resources behind identifying the man that catapulted Murphy's sorry tour into the headlines.

It is indeed shocking that Murphy used a microphone to bellow over an old-age pensioner who challenged him on Gordon Brown's lies on the NHS.

It is indeed shocking that one of his Labour colleagues told a woman recovering from cancer to 'get a job'.

It is indeed shocking that in places, Labour councillors wearing their council name tags were wheeled out to provide an audience.

It is shocking that many think Murphy has engineered this stunt to take people's attention away from the paucity of his arguments and that after supporting the Iraq War and the Tories' Welfare Cap that people now think of him as a 'Red Tory'.

Delivery for Mr Murphy.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Patronising Lady and Scary Man

Sad stuff from Better Together

Better Together are currently the Hibs of Scottish politics. Apologies to all the good indy-supporting and long suffering Hibees out there but the new season is going as swimmingly for Hibs as BT's ad campaigns are.

First of all, the latest in a seemingly long line of 'ordinary voters' turns out to be Airdrie's female Fuhrer and now their bland unthinking but obedient housewife takes the portrayal of women back to the 50s. Farage and Godfrey must be loving it.

This came after Alistair Darling's implosion at the hands of an all conquering Alex Salmond in the 2nd televised indy debate. I almost felt sorry for him until I remembered his words of doom - apparently about the '79 devo referendum.

The responses to #PatronisingBTLady have been hilarious showing where the real creativity of this campaign lies. Having come across one or two BT stalls and met Jim Murphy on his Meltdown Tour, I can honestly say that the Better Together 'activists' come across as 'odd'. All orange corduroys and Jack Wills shirts.

If you want a woman speaking her mind on the referendum then I challenge you to find better than Elaine C Smith. Hard to believe that this is from a year ago but it's worth sharing again.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Jim Murphy's ordinary followers hit the capital


Jim Murphy is a thoroughly unpleasant individual.

I'm convinced that he is the thin, more conservative version of George Galloway. Neither like being challenged and will blow and bellow any naysayers aside. Bullies.

Galloway-Wilson roadshow
On the other hand, whereas Galloway rarely has anyone accompanying him to hog the limelight - other than maybe Brian 'poison dwarf' Wilson making a cameo appearance - Murphy has a small cadre of weird looking drones in suits to beef up the numbers. These followers seem to have a dual purpose - they can act as 'grassroots' listeners in the PR photos but also Jim can rope them in to laugh at anyone who questions him.

Myself and a friend got wind that he was gonna do his 'soapbox' thing 'opposite' a certain pub on the seafront in Edinburgh West. We're both left of centre and can both remember meeting Mr Murphy on anti-racist marches in Glasgow some time ago - back when Murphy was an NUS high-heid-yin hoping for a cushy career in the Labour Party.

My friend is a member of UNISON and hails from a Glasgow scheme. Indeed, he admitted to having been a member of the Labour Party Young Socialists some 30 years ago. Both of us are public servants and are seeing our pensions eroded and pay frozen. We also don't like it that Better Together see fit to use sectarian BNP supporters who one day tweet that 'Catholics should hang from lamposts' while the next appearing on televised Better Together propaganda posing as 'ordinary voters'.

Things are slow to get going but at half an hour later than the scheduled time there are around ten BT automatons gathered. There is no 'juice crate' or megaphone. Instead, Jim and his weird looking band set up camp in a local beer garden. Two shiny drones in BT jackets take to the esplanade for all of 3 minutes to hand out leaflets. No-one seems interested so we engage the drones in conversation and are invited across 'for a chat' in the beer garden where Jim is holding court with a pint in hand. Farage?

Where is William Hague Jim Murphy?
One lady is stating that the NHS is "100% devolved". I add that maybe the running of it is up to us but the financing certainly isn't. Something that Labour-affiliated UNISON seem to agree with.

I raise the Yvonne Hama issue. Murphy asks 'Did that sway you into voting Yes or were you Yes beforehand?' I say it doesn't matter - you shouldn't use racist sectarian nutters in your publicity. 'If you were Yes beforehand then it isn't an issue' he retorts.

Better Together's grassroots - kept hidden today

During the conversation, another friend who's working on a documentary about the referendum texts to ask where Murphy is going next. Reasonable request, no? However, this is where things get really weird.

"It's all online" says one of the drones. 'No it isn't, my friend has tried. Can you tell me just now though?'

"Stick to the issues" says a posh professional PR guy in a suit who wears a 'No Thanks' badge.

Eh? We're confused. 'We aren't arguing, only saying that a friend would like to interview Mr Murphy for his documentary. He's a Swedish film-maker...'

"Shut up and listen!" says the posh suit.

'Er... where will you be next...?"

Murphy steps in, guffawing and egging on his Mormon-esque mates to shout us down. An elderly posh couple - they look like something from Condé Nast Boat Owner mag - step forward. They old guy approaches me in an aggressive manner, finger wagging, "Why don't you just shut up and stop shouting over Jim" he says like an angry father.

I persist. 'Listen. There's a chance for you air your views in a documentary...'

Jim and Posh Suit raise their voices. 'OK these guys obviously aren't interested in the real issues. let's all move over to another table'.

At this point, we open our jackets to show off our bulging belts of explosives as Murphy seems to expect. "Saor Alba!" we cry as we detonate ourselves sending Yessers and BT loons alike into space...

No. You can't join the club.

Actually, we just left.

It's sad when a discussion with an MP leads to said MP and entourage putting their fingers in their ears and yelling 'nah nah nah....!'

We were struck by a number of things...
  • my friend said that they were the poshest Labour guys he'd ever met
  • none of them looked 'ordinary' - they were like pseudo-religious politico hobbyists
  • Jim Murphy doesn't like being challenged as has been evidenced in his '100 Days of Sodom' tour
  • Murphy has the desperate air of a man who sees his seat on the gravy train evaporating
  • they made no attempt to persuade us to vote 'no'
The future must be ours.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

A season like no other kicks off

Though I still think of it as Division One, the new Scottish Championship is where it's at this year. The Club Formerly Known as Glasgow Rangers having emerged from its pet cemetery made short work of winning Scotland's third tier to gain promotion. Hearts having being handed a 15-point penalty on top of having Gary Locke as manager were always likely to go down.

Hibs though, like they have done so often in recent years, took the word misery and made it their own. Big style. Hard as it may be to remember, but a year ago Pat '5-1' Fenlon took the Abbeyhill club to new depths with a 9-0 aggregate loss to mighty Malmo. In stepped Tory Butcher who took a bad thing and made it worse. Hibs saw the cliff of relegation some distance away and raced headlong towards it. The final flourish of woe against Hamilton in front of a home crowd attracting gasps of amazement and guffaws of laughter from supporters of wee clubs around Scotland.

Hibs to their credit, played well against The Rangers last week in the minor Challenge Cup that these wee teams have to compete for despite losing to a badly organised Neu-Ibrox XI.

The farce known as 'The Rangers' will be the focus for most us - even for us supporters of The Other Teams. Their woes have multiplied though mostly off the field at this point. Their dire display against Hibs though to the backdrop of a near empty Ibrox will surely boil over into more rage should they lose to Hearts' youngsters on Sunday. It appears that Rangers 2.0 have lost more than £70m in two years. How?! The Rangers debacle is too complex and labyrinthine to enter into here, so I'll leave that to others.

Scotland's other establishment club, Celtic, have not played well either. After finally overcoming the part-time footballers/ fishermen of Iceland, they were royally humped by Legia Warsaw. Fortunately for Scotland's Walmart of Football, Legia were found guilty of some minor infringement of the rules and Celtic were awarded the exact scoreline they needed to progress. This, is the second time in a few years that their embarrassment on the pitch in Europe has been salved by Europe's footballing high-heid yins.
O Connor - a diet of coke and pizza.

In other worlds, Leigh Griffiths continues to revert to form with rumours that he'll be back at Hibs in the not to distant future. Surely, they wouldn't take him back? One of Hibs' other troubled children, Garry Jos... O Connor is now funding his habit plodding the turf for... Selkirk.

I have no predictions but do hope that... The Rangers are forced to spend another year in the lower leagues and that's if they survive financially at all. Hearts could beat them to the title but I'd imagine their youngsters to be too inconsistent. Hibs, currently with about 13 players to their name but with a new manager are bound to improve on last season's misery. I wouldn't put money on it though.

In the SPL, I'd love Aberdeen or Dundee Utd to take the title. On current showing, Celtic are... shit. But, money talks. Especially to the SFA.

Oh... and Lambie is out for a Yes vote.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Jim Murphy 0 - Auld Lady 1

Or in other words, Jim Murphy's Chernobyl. Or Jim Murphy becomes a bellowing bullying blawhard against a wee pensioner. Or Skeletor's demise...

Who was the last desperate politico to attempt a 'soapbox' stunt in public? Was it William 'Happy' Hague on his 'Save the Pound' tour? Anyway, Murphy reminds me of George Galloway who also resorts to shouting others down when faced with difficult questions.

Whatever, some points to consider from Murphy's very public anal hemorrhage are:

  • the pensioner offers a seasoned politician a fair question
  • Murphy can't even look her in the eye
  • despite the sparse attendence, he feels the need not only for a megaphone but has to yell constantly as if to deafen his naysayers into submission
  • he lies again - the NHS in England is being privatised bit by bit and his Labour colleagues in England have confirmed this though not opposed it
  • all he has to fall back on is.... Braveheart! 

Where's the auld wumman?