Brian Cox 154

My successor as Rector of the University of Dundee, Brian Cox, has left Labour and joined the SNP. Almost no mainstream media coverage – if it was the other way round, we would have Murphy and Cox wall to wall for weeks. I am delighted about Brian’s move as it is more evidence of genuinely radical voices coming in to the party. I was similarly happy yesterday to find that Tommy Sheppard, for whom I voted, has been selected to fight Edinburgh East, where I live. I think the SNP with its new membership is going to be a great deal more radical than it was before.

Long term readers may recall that in 2010 I stood down as Rector of Dundee University after only one term, as I did not feel I had been able to give it as much time as I would wish to do a really excellent job. Now I have moved back to Edinburgh, those problems no longer apply, and I shall be standing for election to take the post again next year, as Brian Cox completes his second (and final) term.

I cannot help but recall that on the polling day of my election as Rector in 2007, the Daily Record came out in Dundee with a full front page photo of my opponent, Andy Nicol (unionist rugby player), and a single front page headline “I was born to lead Dundee students”. The lengths to which the Establishment will go to try to ensure that whistleblowers stay down and stomped upon sometimes surprise even me.

There is a pro-Independence rally outside parliament from 11 am on Saturday. I shall be speaking. I am not sure how widely it has been publicised, but I do hope that it will show that the extraordinary spirit that has been awakened in Scotland is still alive and kicking.

Allowed HTML - you can use: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

154 thoughts on “Brian Cox

1 2 3 6
  • Andrew Smith

    As a veteran of your first campaign – and a former Dundee Uni colleague – I wish you the best of luck 🙂

  • John Spencer-Davis

    I wish you the very best of luck.

    I did not know the marvellous actor Brian Cox was presently filling the post! I an afraid I would vote for him if I were in a position to do so and he wanted it again. I have been a diehard fan of his ever since I saw “Manhunter”. Never seen a more chilling portrayal of an intelligent and sensitive sociopath. I am afraid I have been hostile to Anthony Hopkins’s portrayal ever since…

    Kind regards,


  • John Spencer-Davis

    Yes, I thought that was probably the case. I knew nothing of his politics. I’m just in awe of his talent – and I have seen him interviewed and he seems a delightful person. No doubt you know him.


  • Abe Rene

    Labour needs to act fast to stop this haemorrhage. My suggestions:

    1. Announce a ban on selling off council houses in England and compulsory repurchase from anyone with more than one home, on gaining power.

    2. A commitment to building 1 million Y-cubes for those who can’t afford bricks and stone (and who can in London, unless they’re wealthy?)

    Act fast, Labour, or this could happen all over the place!

  • Phil

    Cox spent a brief period coming in our local for the music. Decent bloke. We had no idea he was a famous bloke till my neighbour later spotted him on the telebox.

  • nevermind

    Thanks for the article Clark, now that there is no campaign for an Independent Craig Murray, I shall have to concentrate on getting the Greens elected in Norwich South, leaving Chloe and Jessica doing their party political bitchiest to get elected in Norwich North.

  • Mary

    I hope she means it.

    General Election 2015: Nicola Sturgeon ‘Unenthusiastic’ About SNP-Labour Coalition
    28/01/2015 15:59 GMT


    The news is getting some coverage, viz

    Actor Brian Cox quits Labour party to join SNP
    The Guardian-45 minutes ago
    Actor Brian Cox, who has quit the Labour party and joined the SNP. … Joe FitzPatrick, SNP MSP for Dundee City West, said: “Brian Cox joining …

    Brian Cox: Why I’ve quit Labour for SNP
    The Courier-3 hours ago

    Actor Brian Cox quits labour to join the SNP
    Herald Scotland-49 minutes ago

    Actor Brian Cox defects from Labour to SNP
    Scotsman-2 hours ago

    SNP welcomes new member Brian Cox
    SNP (press release)-1 hour ago

  • Vronsky

    Cox was (eventually) a Yesser in the referendum, and was interviewed. On those occasions he seemed to have little grasp of the political issues, merely recognising a fashion.

    Where the bee sucks, there suck I

  • Mary

    O/T Handy.

    LATEST:Ministry of Justice says data from three semi-secret inquiries has gone missing on discs lost in the post

    Historic child abuse inquiries, plural? Nothing.
    Prince Andrew allegations of sex with a minor? Nothing

    Subsumed by HMD swamping the ether.

  • Republicofscotland

    Milband in Scotland today promising “Home Rule” for Scotland in the first hundred days of Labours tenure, as long as we vote for him.

    No doubt the London owned Daily Record will back Miliband, to the hilt, it will make a change from Murray Foote drooling all over Gordon (titan of politics) Brown.

    Meanwhile Jim Murphy is planning to change the elusive Scottish Labour constitution, a document almost nobody has ever seen and which most people didn’t know even existed until a few weeks ago.

    I’d be surprised if the Labour Constitution document actually exists, even the Electoral Commission website, hasn’t got a copy.

    I think I may have more chance spotting a Coelacanth, in my local parks pond, than spotting a copy of Labours Constitution document.

  • RobG

    Brian Cox seems like a nice guy.

    And perhaps off topic, I wonder if he watched the BBC Six O’clock News this evening. They had a breezy, upbeat piece about workers in Sweden having micro chips inserted into them, so that they could be identified.

    Is it just me..?

  • DiamondFish

    The thing about all dystopian science fiction is that none of the characters realises that they are living in a dystopian society. So I would say that BBC clip conforms to expectations.

  • bevin

    ” I think the SNP with its new membership is going to be a great deal more radical than it was before.”
    This is likely to be true too of the Greens which is also recruiting new members rapidly.
    Both parties are likely to become more radical, in terms of activism and internal democracy, and more inclined to socialist solutions. The “sealed tomb” in which Blair sought to confine Labour’s left is emptying. What is left in the Labour party is a rump of squabbling careerists and very tired demoralised members. The party is almost over.

  • Mary

    RobG I think they are preparing us. Cellan Jones had one put in his hand for good measure!

    Then there was a shot of a nice little Swedish doggie. All UK doggies will have to have microchips inserted by April 2016 so that makes it really OK for us to have them too in case we stray or get lost!

    Office puts chips under staff’s skin

    6 February 2013
    Dogs in England must be microchipped from 2016
    Dog microchip date set for England

    Every dog owner in England will have to microchip their animal from 2016 under plans intended to cut a rise in strays.

    The microchips will be coded with owners’ details, and owners who do not comply could face fines of up to £500.

    A legal loophole may also be closed, meaning owners could be prosecuted over an attack by their dog on private land.

    Already compulsory for dogs in NI. Not required in Scotland or Wales currently.

    btw Cellan Jones is married to Diane Coyle, the vice chair of the BBC ‘Trust’.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    “Cox was (eventually) a Yesser in the referendum, and was interviewed. On those occasions he seemed to have little grasp of the political issues, merely recognising a fashion.

    Where the bee sucks, there suck I”

    Which leads me to ask : what exactly is the status of Rectors of Scottish universities and what are their functions and powers? Are they academics?

    I seem to recall that there have been other “personalities” as Rectors – I’m thinking of Malcolm Muggeridge, Peter Ustinov…..

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Didn’t Malcom Muggeridge resign as Rector of some Scottish university because a contraceptive dispensing machine was installed in the Students Union?

    Which, if true, is rather strange if Rectors are supposed to represent the students (and, presumably, their interests including sexual).

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)


    I believe that micor-chipping is alrady a legal requirement for dogs and cats in a number of Continental European countries.

    Anything that reduces the number of animals abandoned by their owners (or animals which are stolen) is a good thing in my opinion.

    Surely you would agree with that?

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    re SYRIZA and Greece (pay attention, Mr Goss!)

    PM Tsipras has announced that the new Greek govt intends to reverse the envisaged privatisation of Pireas harbour and the DEH (Greek Public Power Corporation).

    The reason for no longer going ahead with the privatisation of DEH is given by the Minister for Energy as being the need to ensure cheap electricity in order to render Greek industry more competitive.

    As is well known – any Greek readers of this blog are welcome to confirm – the DEH is a by-word in Greece for inefficiency, overmanning (people were given jobs in DEH as part of political patronage)and a powerful union determined to maintain the high wages of DEH employees. All of which led to electricity prices being higher than they should have been.

    It is interesting that SYRIZA should wish to keep DEH in its current lamentable state.

    Is this a harbinger of things to come?

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Of course, there is an even more excellent Brian Cox.

    I refer to the Professor Brian Cox of the famous “Black Papers” on education a couple of decades ago.

    Still worth reading.

1 2 3 6

Comments are closed.