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Friday, 2 December 2011

Public sector strike and teachers - Ken Clarke and Mary Bousted on QT

Mary Bousted of AMT was passionate and articulate in her defence of her union's first strike in its 127-year history, was in command of her facts and figures, and put her finger on the worm at the heart of the Coalition's apple - namely, that the money raised by this daylight robbery from public sector workers was not going into their pension funds, but instead to bail out the Coalition's failing economic policy.

Ken Clarke, in contrast, was neither passionate nor articulate, and was most certainly not in command of the facts - he didn't even understand the vital - and substantial - difference between a final salary scheme and a career-average salary scheme, a distinction that even the most numerically challenged can understand very clearly.

Ken Clarke - good old jazz-loving, hush-puppied Ken, a rich man from politics and directorships in the tobacco industry, etc. - is now, I fear, past his sell-by date as an active politician, and his cosy persona is no longer enough to justify his ministerial role, nor his place as a PR front for a brutal, classed-based Coalition, stuffed with rich men like himself.


  1. Out to pasture.

    He looked and sounded as if he'd been drinking.

    He had an embarrassing lack of grasp of his facts.

    The coalition is just a horrid construct - why do these people get votes?

  2. They get votes because people agree with them, Stevie.

  3. A minority making the majority unhealthier, poorer and less well-off in retirement.

    I look forward to a Scottish republic (2nd referendum).

  4. I don't agree with a second referendum on the monarchy, and there are no such plans. I am a republican, too, but we have given a commitment to a constitutional monarchy in good faith, and the Scottish Government and the Scottish people will live with it, I believe - and that means for a very long time.

    If a republic is more important to you than independence, then find a party that is committed to it - that's the honest thing to do.

    Unionists are exploiting what they see as nationalist ambivalence on this question, and it's bad for our reputation for integrity to feed this idea.

  5. No, but I'd like a republic.

    Are you sure the unionists are exploiting this subject - I feel it's rarely mentioned?

    In any case, a queen as head of state is no biggie but I'd still like a republic.

  6. You don't follow Twitter, Stevie - it's been a topic for two days now ...

  7. No, I don't actually know how to work Twitter - I get on, don't know what I've done and just get off it more confused than ever. FACEBOOK is easy - that's a place to expand things.

    If this 'argument' is the best the Brit nats have then they're screwed as far as the arguments go.

    Their 'EU won't like you very much' argument is nauseatingly weak and the other nonsense they utter likewise.

    I don't actually care if there's a queen or not - I want Scotland to be independent - that's the aspiration. A republic or monarch as head of state is relatively speaking unimportant.

    A new poll showing the Scots are open to the economic case being put for independence - 2/3rds would vote yes if they thought they would be slightly better off is interesting.

    That's an argument the SNP and our economist FM can make and make well I feel.

    That's an argument.

  8. Thanks, Stevie.

    Can I make general request - on that I've made several times before - not to put links in your comments unless you are prepared to convert them to html code. Google comments will not reproduce as clickable links unless you do so.

    It's not rocket science, easy to find out how to do, and saves everyone, including me a lot of hassle.