Grouse Beater 142

I have signed the below Open Letter against the expulsion from the SNP of the long term blogger Gareth Wardell, known as Grouse Beater.


In writing this joint statement we, the undersigned – bloggers and other influencers in the campaign for Scottish independence, affirm our commitment to independence and to the unity of the independence movement in its entirety. It is not our aim to cause discord or to encourage members of the SNP to cancel their memberships. We hope only to raise our concerns and to ask that the Disciplinary Committee and the leadership of the SNP reconsider their decision, and we hope sincerely that the contents of this letter will be taken seriously and in the spirit in which they are intended. Yesterday the decision was made by the Disciplinary Committee of the Scottish National Party to rescind the party membership of Gareth Wardell, the well-known and much respected author of The Grouse Beater blog.

This decision was made as a result of an article he published addressing the issue of the GMB, a London-based trade union, acting in Scotland to deny people their democratic rights. Owing to the author’s reference in the blog to the Nazis’ attitude to trade unions in the 1930s and 40s and his quotation of the term “the Jew” – in the context of citing Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf – the leadership of the GMB union accused him of making an antisemitic attack on Ms Rhea Wolfson, who, unbeknownst to Mr Wardell at the time of writing, is herself Jewish.

We agree without reservation that antisemitism and all forms of racism, prejudice, and discrimination are always wrong. The campaign for Scottish independence is an open and inclusive social and political movement which welcomes the participation and activism of everyone who believes independence is the best option for the future of our country. However, after much discussion and careful consideration, we do not accept Mr Wardell’s contribution was indeed anti-Semitic or racist or discriminatory in the least. It is our firm belief that his words were deliberately and opportunistically taken out of context and weaponised against him and the entire movement in a concerted attack by the union, members of the Scottish Labour Party – to which the GMB is affiliated, and elements of the anti-independence tabloid press.

Frustratingly, this unjustified accusation was taken up by and supported by a number of high-profile people in the SNP – most notably Ms Fiona Robertson the SNP’s national women’s and equalities convener. In an article published on her own blog titled: Holding Ourselves to Our Own Standards, she made the claim that “most people… are not people who have enough background experience of anti-Semitism to make that judgement.” Yet she herself, without any qualifications in racism or antisemitism in particular, is – apparently. Misquoting and wholly misrepresenting Gareth Wardell, Ms Robertson went on in her piece to offer a somewhat problematic definition of antisemitism and from this establish her case that Mr Wardell was sending out a “dogwhistle” to anti-Semites and racists: The explanation is as follows:

if you are writing about a union leader who is Jewish, bringing up Hitler’s view on unions – that they were dangerous because Jewish people controlled them – and then specifically talking about the Jewish union leader implies a link. Otherwise there is no reason whatsoever to start quoting Hitler. It essentially says ‘Hitler believed that Jewish people controlling unions was bad, and this person is Jewish and is controlling a union in a way I don’t like.’ The link between those two dots is ‘so maybe he had a point’.

“Bringing up Hitler’s view on unions,” even when speaking to a Jewish person, is not in and of itself anti-Semitic. This is at best a tenuous grasp. Gareth Wardell at no point claimed unions were dangerous “because Jewish people controlled them.” This much is a serious misrepresentation of the point he was making. On this Mr Wardell was clear; that this was Hitler’s view, and that the Nazis used this pernicious belief in order to undermine and attack trade unions – which Mr Wardell describes as one of the “cornerstones of democracy.” Ms Robertson concludes this argument by suggesting that Mr Wardell’s conclusion is that “maybe [Hitler] had a point.”

This assessment, sadly, suggests only one of two things; either Ms Robertson has failed to understand the article she is critiquing, or malicious intent. The Grouse Beater article implies no such thing. It is reasonable to conclude, given the position of Fiona Robertson in the SNP, that her opinion has become the uncritically accepted opinion of the party’s leadership and has therefore informed the judgement of the Disciplinary Committee and its decision to expel Gareth Wardell from the party. We, the undersigned, hold that both this judgement and the decision to cancel Mr Wardell’s membership of the party are unwarranted and utterly unacceptable. This decision undermines freedom of expression within the party and the movement, and seriously damages the trust that we depend on, that the party will not dispose of us in order to satisfy a perceived need in the political leadership of the movement to appear above reproach.

Signed (28 November 2018):

Barrhead Boy
Craig Murray
David Hooks (PoliticsScot)
Gareth Wardell (Grouse Beater)
Jason Michael (Jeggit)
Mr Malky
Tommy Sheridan

I can see no room in the article to doubt that Gareth – with whom I have fairly regular disagreements – was quoting Hitler’s views on Jews and the Unions not in approval, but plainly as a bad thing and a terrible warning from history. I cannot say that his article was elegantly written or especially well expressed, and it is unclear why he decided to bring Hitler into the argument at all.

But it is only in the prevailing atmosphere of witch-hunt that a man with no history of racism or fascist thought, would be condemned over a single instance of muddle, which has to be construed in the worst possible manner to be ajudged anti-semitic. It is the eagerness of the SNP leadership to participate in this witch-hunt, against an ordinary member, which is to me a matter of the deepest concern.

This is particularly serious in the light of numerous mainstream media articles which repeat the quote from Hitler with the clear, and entirely unjustified, inference that Gareth was quoting Hitler with approval. The SNP should not seek mainstream media approval at the expense of supporting one of the worst of all slurs against one of its own grassroots members.

142 thoughts on “Grouse Beater

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  • Tony Hughes

    This is a step too far SNP. As a long standing supporter and member I would ask you to reverse this decision as it is not only ott, but simply wrong.

  • Saor Alba

    I have always thought that Fiona Robertson is not fit for purpose and had no credibility. This is a career politician in my view. I believe that she should resign forthwith.

    • Kenny

      I agree entirely. When you think of the enormous wealth of talent we have in the indy movement, the actual team of ministers is very poor. I cannot understand how someone like FR is in the position she is. Her mediocre approach is a liability to the indy movement. Just think if the likes of Lesley Riddoch or even Elaine E. Smith in her place… She was dreadful in the indyref1 campaign, I remember her letting Andrew Neil walk all over her in an interview. You would not see that happening with Tommy Sheridan or Jeannie Freeman!

      • Bayard

        I think it was Parkinson, of Law fame, who pointed out that leaders rarely recruit talent at the top, seeing talented people as a threat.

  • Tony M

    The Scottish National Party it seems, not just from this incident but many other incongruities, have sold us down the river. They no more support independence than the Tories or Labour, into which they have seamlessly morphed, they’re just another controlled-opposition, their vision of independence if it ever came to pass would be worse than the dismal present. It would no longer be the Scotland we love, which has withstood so far the storm-tide that is globalism, due to its engineered insignificance and strong sense of community in that adversity, and become a true dystopia which would wreck the sublime good still remaining. As a gay man deplore their ultra-PC posture and constant tiresome virtue signalling, their superficiality over substance, their cowardice. I will never waver from supporting independence but will never again vote for the SNP which I have done in every election local and national since the by-election in Paisley South following the death of Gordon McMaster. I’ll vote for the BNP instead if that option presents.

    We start again from scratch.

  • Republicofscotland

    I agree Craig, the expulsion of Grousebeater was harsh. However youve just got to look at the state Labour’s in right now, with regards to anti-Semitic accusations.

    The media pounce on anything they consider to be anti-Semitic even if its tendentious at best. The whole subject of Hitler, the J*ws, is not a debating platform for political party members period, it can only lead to Cardinal Richelieu like accusations played out in the media.

    More importantly such accusations even though they hold no real veracity, damage causes, Jeremy Corbyn has his hands full fighting off party accusations of anti-Semitism, and even though they hold no real water, the media helps to damage Corbyn’s chances of becoming PM by airing them regularly.

    Grousebeater is and probably still will be a great servant to the independence movement. However we cannot allow the media and rival politicians especially at Holyrood, to make inroads using this route. It would’ve been extremely damaging even though no evidence exists of anti-Semitism that I can see, if the media were allowed to push it at this crucial time.

    In an ideal world, the media and political opponents, would agree that Grousebeater had caused no offence, but we don’t live in an ideal world.

      • Republicofscotland

        Not this time Sharp Ears, I was merely using Labour’s unfortunate predicament with regards to dubious allegations of anti-Semitism as for instance.

        Constructed anti-Semitism is such a damaging weapon to yield against a party or individual of that party, that it’s better to avoid it if possible, but that’s not always possible.

        The media will always use the anti-Semitic club on Corbyn or Sturgeon if they get the chance. Throw dirt and it sticks even if the allegation is lacking veracity, especially if the SNP are in the crosshairs.

        • Shatnersrug

          Bloody hell, all this hurling of insults and suspensions is like working for the student union all over again. Do you think that perhaps there are too many people stuck in perpetual higher education mentality working in politics these days. I mean…? get a life!!There are people starving to death in doorways. Women taking up sex work just to pay rent. Kids with showing up to school hungry.

          • Spaull

            We have a whole class of politicians who have come the PPE-SPAD-safe seat route, in all parties. It is hardly a surprise that they believe in nothing and all think the same. Everything is about personal power, career advancement and tactics. Nothing is about public service, beliefs or making changes to the country for the better.

            And because this is such a widespread phenomenon, I fear that many of those who did come into politics for the right reasons end up falling into the bad habits of the career politicians.

            It’s one of the reasons I admire Corbyn. He has always advocated the path he believes is best for the country, even when he knows it will not be popular. He prefers to make the argument and try to win it than to agree with something he doesn’t believe.

    • Johny Conspiranoid

      Labour has bent over backwards to appease the media but it has made no difference. Why would it make a difference for the SNP? And Labour is doing just fine without the media’s approval.

  • JOML

    Bottom line, the SNP has taken the path of least resistance, preferring to throw an innocent under the bus than face the pseudo wrath of the press. Says as much about our press as it does about the SNP. However, if the SNP don’t make a stand against the press in this instance, it doesn’t bode well for the future.
    Don’t really give a toss about political parties – never been a member of any – but I do care about the independence movement. We do need a viable alternative leader for this movement but the SNP remain in pole position, regardless of what others want. The question is, when will an alternative emerge? Will any SNP MSP/MPs have the balls to change the current direction of the SNP? We can only hope.

    • Republicofscotland

      Its the bigger picture you’ve got to look at JOML, independence is the goal, giving our opponents an opportunity to throw anti-Semitism at us, no matter how fallacious it may be, in the media or the debating chamber at this very crucial stage is unthinkable.

      In this kind of undemocratic dirty dog fight there was always going to be innocent casualties, remember the goal.

      • JOML

        I know, RoS, just frustrating. The SNP’s response almost legitimises the media’s agenda – set by their masters.

        • Jo1

          It’s very frustrating but RoS is right. The crusade against Corbyn was brutal with some of his own,including the appalling Berger and Hodge, using tactics that were filthy.

          That’s why I think this SNP guy was foolish to word the article in the way he did.

          • Spaull

            I draw a different lesson from Labour’s experience. Once Corbyn’s enemies discovered that the anti-Semitism slurs worked, they kept going back to them time and time again. They worked within Labour because many Labour MPs are intent on destroying their own party rather than see it win led by Corbyn. The SNP does not have that same fifth column, and is therefore in a much stronger position to tell the media to do one.

            It is doubly disappointing that they didn’t, because they have a great chance to expose the whole disgraceful business for the sham it is.

          • Jo1

            I agree the SNP don’t have the same issues as Labour faced on the anti-S issue. That said, the media remains on red alert for any sign of it anywhere. That’s why people, especially those in the public domain, need to be very wary of even unintentionally walking straight into trouble, taking their Party with them.

  • Gary

    All to reminiscent of how the Labour Party are smearing their own leader, Jeremy Corbyn. Although I’m not a Labour voter I sympathise with the situation he’s found himself in. He has tried to act in conscience during his career only to have the vilest elements of his own party try to unseat him from his position as leader using false accusations of anti-Semitism.

    The abuse of anti-Semitism accusations for political ends means that when someone actually DOES express vile opinions abour Jewish people, the public are going to be a lot less likely to believe it true.

    Notably some of the victims of this latest political craze are, in fact, Jewish themselves! It appears that what is ACTUALLY meant a lot of the time is someone who is critical of Israel. Even the most ardent patriot in Israel must recognise that NO country should be above criticism.

    The BBC, which skilfully avoids resting it’s cameras on ANY protest in London (since the days of kittling and the deaths of news vendors anyway) and even avoid their very mention (except in six second sound clips on London’s local news on it’s website, hidden unless you actually SEARCH for it) This same BBC managed to report of the British Board of Deputies in Parliament Sq having a ‘Day of Rage’ against Corbyn for his ‘anti-semitism’ (ie sticking up for Palestine) despite the protest being sparsely supported and by many who weren’t even Labour Party members.

    ‘News’ has little to do with the facts and these days the mere threat of an accusation has people running to condemn those who are innocent. I thought we had reached peak feeding frenzy when the press were accusing a speaker of being anti-Semite – who was Jewsih and a survivor of the Nazi death camps and THEN trying to use that accusation as a smear on Corbyn because he had spoken at the same event. He hadn’t endorsed his views or invited him to speak either.

    We can’t trust anything we read or hear anymore. Too much of the news is spin, opinion and lies…

  • Ian

    Poor weak stuff from the SNP. Other Scottish parties show incredible support for odious characters by sending them on diversity courses etc. But the SNP hangs someone out to dry on the basis of faux outrage based on intentional misinterpretation of a blog which critiqued the role of the GMB in the recent Glasgow strike action. I have just resigned my SNP membership on principle but with considerable regret.

  • Stu

    I know you hate trade unions Craig but you should be ashamed of describing the GMB as London based.

    The location of the head office of a union is irrelevant.

  • giyane

    If Hitler foresaw Thatcherism and tried to prevent it he’s going up in my respect. this anti-semitix game seems to involve pre-loading history with modern events as well as shooting at the grouse-beaters instead of the grouse.
    Pretty daft and downright dangerous. Better not to go there… you’ll end up with your brain-springs coming out and frothing like a mating snail or canvassing Tory into your soup.

  • Dave

    It’s cowardice and illustrates why the SNP isn’t a genuine Independence party, because nations are born and survive in blood. So what hope if you retreat in fear from a swear word! What would they do if Independence itself was deemed “anti-Semitic”?

    • Republicofscotland


      The days of blood are hopefully over, today’s armies are made up of the press, tv, and social media, the first two bar one newspaper, twice barred from the PM’s news conference, are attacking the SNP, the last thing we need is to give them more ammunition.

      • Dave

        We can strive for peace, but no doubt an independent Scotland would have its own military forces, which presumably would be deployed as needed! I appreciate its good tactics to choose your battles, but I suspect it’s PC-fear rather than tactics behind the decision.

  • Tom

    It was foolish beyond foolish to bring Hitler and fascism into this article. For what purpose? What connection do they have to the points Grouse Beater says he was trying to make? If no connection at all, then why mention them?

    It is equally foolish of Craig and, it seems (from the comments section here) many others to expect the SNP to give Grouse Beater the benefit of the doubt on this. He said what he said and, in the context of his article, it was completely unnecessary to say it.

    What on earth was going through his mind when he decided to mention Hitler and fascism in the same breath as references to the Glasgow strike?

    No political party can afford to turn the other cheek to this kind of thing, and no amount of pleading should or will persuade the SNP to change its mind on the withdrawal of Grouse Beater’s membership.

  • Tony M

    Unions are quite happy with blatant anti-Catholic sectarianism in the workplace, foster and protect the perpetrators, laugh at and mock the many victims; their shop-stewards and paid officials not only turn a blind-eye but encourage and very often participate in it, reward it, and where management, perpetrators and the union representatives are all fellow freemasons they conspire to cover it up . Hypocritical scum of the earth.

    • giyane

      RoS. Tom. Tony M

      Divide and rule. I love all your points but the Holy Qur’an tells us about a certain people that is always trying to light the flames of conflict. Therefore I would urge each of you not to go down the California wild-fires route.
      Oxygen of publicity. etc etc. Jeremiah Corbyn is a model of patience and restraint which few can emulate.

  • J Galt

    I will continue to hold my nose and hand over my £2 a month, however patience is wearing thin.

  • amanda wheatley

    I read the article as a recent and possibly less involved SNP member, I did not think the article was Anti -Semetic and could see no clear grounds to suggest it was. As far as I remember (and my memories are admittedly hazy on this point) there was a comparison between the actions of the Glasgow union sewing division, and the methods of fascism. Whether you agree with this perception or not, it was not Anti Semetic in any way that I could see. On the contrary it was very clearly a condemnation of fascism. To read this article and conclude that it was Anti Semetic is putting 2 and 2 together to make 7. I think it is a sad state of affairs when the mention of Hitler and fascism leads us to jump to the conclusion that the piece of writing is Anti Semetic.

  • patrick kerrigan

    Who is the leadership trying tp impress by this stupid expulsion?Certainly not the ordinary membership but as I think more likely the so called Establishment.Are they being slowly groomed, eventually to be bought out?Foreign affairs, especially anti Russian views are being propagated as factual following a Neo-con line.Not happy.

  • Loony

    Who cares about context? The answer is no-one, and they don’t care because the Stalinist state of Scotland has already opined that context is irrelevant and this view has been affirmed by the courts and reaffirmed by the appeal courts.

    One Markus Meechan has been criminalized by the courts for teaching his dog to make Nazi salutes. His defense that his actions were intended as humor and not as evidence of his Nazi leanings was rejected by the courts on the grounds that they are “entitled to ignore specific contextual parts of the evidence”

    There is an old saying “live by the sword, die by the sword”

    Remember the revolution eats itself always and everywhere, no exceptions.

    Most importantly for Scottish people is the observation by Leonardo da Vinci that “it is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end”

  • J

    Fairly predictably, the most credible anti-racists are being PR’d into racists of one form or another while the most visible racists have been, er, whitewashed, into working class hero’s.

    Credit to Craig and others in standing up for Gareth.

  • mary mackenzie

    I am surprised that the SNP have expelled Grousebeater from the party for his article.
    Have they read it?
    It equates attacks on the unions with Nazism and gives an example.
    It looks as if the SNP are running scared of the Media, even when the Media twist things in this ludicrous way.
    We need courage if we are going to succeed in gaining self government, not to be flustered like hysterical poultry by every stupid and illogical slur.

  • Douglas

    The ‘anti-semitism smear mine field’ has been constructed for other political battles (Israel-Palestinian and Labour internal struggles). It actually undermines steps to tackle real anti-semitism.

    I am convinced that GB is in no way anti-semitic. I regret that this has become a smokescreen to get the GMB out of trouble. Pandering to any faux outrage will only encourage more nonsense.

    A friend who strays into a mine field is still a friend.

  • Bert.

    What is happening here is just typical of the neo-nazi style social control that has become a part of our lives. If you are part of the politically acceptable establishment then you can use the strongest and most abusive planguage against those you oppose; but if you wish to criticise those protected by the establishment position then you are &^%&^. Whatever the phrase may be.

    Why is it that there is total failure to demand that the criminal psychopaths of judaism are not disgraced; discreditted and forcible thrown out of Palestine and then made to pay swingeing (think Versailes) reparations for the brutality and violence heaped upon the Palestinians in the last 70 years. Do you doubt that the language is justified? See:

    ‘Zionism, Judaism and the Jewish State of Israel’ by Lynda Burstein Brayer [1]; and:

    ‘The Real Story of How Israel Was Created’ by Alison Weir [2]; and:

    ‘The Hidden History of How the U.S. Was Used to Create Israel’ by Alison Weir [3]

    Moreover, as I understand it, if a country is recognised as Apartheid (as Israel has been) it is encumbant upon everyone: States; companies and corporations; and individuals, to oppose that Apartheid regime. Therefore, it is not only legitemate to criticise Israel in the strongest teerms but it is a legal obligation to do so.

    But, there is more. Alison Weir’s ”The Real Story of How Israel Was Created” outlines how the jews, confronted with a vote on the possible creation of an Independent State of Israel by the UN General Assembly, realised that they would not likely win the vote. They got the vote delayed for six months while they went around cajoling; bribing and thereatening to get enough members of the General Assembly to favour the creation of Israel. But – as you might expect – there is a twist in the tail.

    According to Weir, the General Assembly vote is only – and no more than – a recommendation to the Security Council. It seems that, for the General Assembly vote to carry the weight of International Law and make Israel a legally recognisable State according to the UN, that vote must be ratified by the Security Council.


    So far as I am aware – and I do hope my understanding is correct in this – Israel is a criminal venture: the State of Israel does not exist and is no more nor less than a wanton act of the most barbaric thuggery carried out against the Palestinian people. It is not a question of the whether the State of Israel has a right to exist… It does not exist. The jews have to be recognised as no more nor less than a gang of sick psychopathic criminals who have robbed the Palestinian people of their land. I think, under these ircumstances, the strong language used in the second paragraph is entirely justified.

    But more, there are plenty of people who will call me an anti-semite for writing this. But I have three answers to that (answers which capitalists; politicians; and feminists might also take on board):

    In the language of George Edward Moore – the early twentieth century english philospher and ethicist – in his ‘Principia Ethica’ made it clear that the motive for a statement does not bear on the truth or falsity of that statement; Socrates pointed out: when the arguement is lost slander is the tool of the loser; and, of course, we all know that, by definition, Ad Hominem arguement is empty of intellectual force. I could throw in a forth: Craig Murray has made it clear that, on this blog, he expects commentators to play the ball not the man. Please call me names… You will prove me right.



      • Bert.

        I know they are. And many observing Jews have been most critical of Israel not least Noam Chomsky. Why should it be devisive to tell the truth? Accorind to Weir it is likely that the State of Israel would not exist if were not for the machinationsof the late firties and the violence that has been heaped upon the Palestinians to effect the creation of Israel.

        If you read the references you will find that, in the late 1940s, many peope were against the creation of Israel because it was seen as divisive and would create a running sore across that part of the world. I think it is fair to say that, the the last 70 years has proved that analysis correct.

        It may seem brutal to say that Israel shuld be abolished but it waoudl solve the problem and, since it does not have legitemacy in the first place, it woudlbe entirely legitemate. Moreover, there is a wide-spread view that people who gain from crime or other wrong-doing should not be allowd to keep the benifits. But the jews are allowed to keep the benefits of there wanton barbarity.

        A short while ago I was reading a piece that indicated that about 34% of the human population are Christians; about 27% are Mulim; about 16% are unbelievers of one stripe or another, and jews are only about 0.2%. They are a phenomenally small proportion of the population exercsing an extraordinarily significant – and unjustified – impact upon world affairs.



  • Graham

    What a nightmare this whole thing is. I was just doing a bit of research on Ms. Robertson. From the looks and sounds of what I could see about her background on the net, she is a disabled person who, because she is in a minority and suddenly has a small position of power, all of a sudden seems to believe (with the SNP’s hyper-zealot PC stance supporting her) that she knows all about all minorities and their struggles. This is actually nauseating to me.

    With her quixotic, want-to-sound-important-and-grown-up-in-public, party-and-credibility damaging attack on Grouse Beater, and condescension about people who aren’t ‘experts’ in Judaism or anti-Semitism, as she presumably assumes herself to be (despite the absolute lack of reality in this personal self-assessment), she comes across as nothing more than another PC, anti-intellectual parochial SNP whiner.

    The SNP are their own worst enemies, shedding members with this discriminatory dross, and now coming across as a deluded, infighting revenge party, where minorities who have never held any real societal power before are empowered by a seemingly misandristic SNP upper tier to say or do whatever tripe they want. They have no real experience in Real World Politics, in playing with the big boys on a national or international stage, and their parochialism is apparent every time they open their ill-educated mouths.

    I absolutely genuinely believe in equality for all, of every minority and sexuality or race, whatever the anguished ism-du-jour is, but when the ill-informed agenda-obsessed wafflings of people not qualified to comment on serious subjects damage the SNP and Scotland, and an innocent man…the SNP needs to take a long, hard look at itself. The fact that a random low-level wannabe-politico panicked about a nonexistent antisemitic snipe and ended up throwing…a JEW under the SNP bus a sweet, sick irony indeed. Ms. Robertson needs to keep her mouth shut and not comment on subjects she clearly knows nothing about whatsoever. It’s damaging to, and embarrassing for, Scotland.

  • Tony M

    Someone somewhere is telling porkies here. ‘Grousebeater’ says he wasn’t in fact a member of the SNP, but doesn’t clarify whether this was ever; at the time of the GMB strike article; or at the time of his ‘suspension’. If he’s reinstated not having been a member in the first place, are they going to make it party membership compulsory? Looks like a confected scandal with both the GMB person and the blogger in cahoots, and the SNP fell right into the trap. This whole thing has a bad smell surrounding it.

  • Willie

    I am very much afraid that the SNP, through decisions like this, will split the independence movement.

    There is no way that Gareth Wardel’s comments were racist and they were indeed weaponised against him.

    The arrogance of illusory power in a devolved administration will be the SNPs undoing, and with it, a hugely weakened independence movement.

  • Sharp Ears

    The GMB is embedded in the HoC, the Scottish and Welsh parliaments.

    ‘There are over 80 MP’s who are members of GMB. We have an active GMB Parliamentary Group who help to make sure issues that matter to GMB members are raised in the House of Commons. Sitting on our executive are:

    Jo Stevens MP (Chair)
    Richard Burgon MP (Secretary)
    Dawn Butler MP (Vice-Chair)
    Emma Lewell-Buck MP (Lead for Public Service)
    Ruth Smeeth MP (Lead for Manufacturing and Commercial Services)’

    Note Ruth Smeeth there.

  • giyane

    When we were chucked out of our electrical work at Coventry University, it was the union that did it. Unions don’t stand up for workers , they stand up for their members and make problems for others. The high bar the union sets for membership might maintain high standards, but it has become a massive barrier to the electrical trade by would-be members. Unions can be just as oppressive as anyone else, and often are. motes, eyes. They should get a grip.

  • John Welch

    Welcome to the Brave New World of Purity Of Thought. Soon you won’t be allowed to say anything unless it is composed in such carefully crafted, turgid prose that it is rendered completely meaningless. Right, that’s me off to my “safe space” before I get attacked for being racist!

  • giyane


    Anybody else get this problem with Microsoft? For a few years now Microsoft have prevented me from using my second Outlook account because they make me go back to the main account while I am trying to open the second. The 2nd account has remained unopenable for so long that today I received this communication from them. Needless to say they don’t check their emails so its impossible to sort it out:

    “We recently received a request to recover your Microsoft account [email protected]. Unfortunately, our automated system has determined that the information you provided was not sufficient for us to validate your account ownership. Microsoft takes the security and privacy of our customers very seriously, and our commitment to protecting your personal information requires that we take the utmost care in ensuring that you are the account owner.

    We have taken the additional step of blocking your account ************* until we can verify you as the account owner. This will prevent any further use of the account, and protect you from any possible malicious activity.”

    Microsoft has no human customer service interface, unlike ebay , paypal, Amazon etc. Sometimes organisations get profitable and powerful by cutting out the basic human decencies. When this happens they become the problem , not the solution. The Welsh national Assembly and the SNP sound like they’ve got themselves into this inhuman way of thinking. A human institution without humanity is much worse than no institution or one controlled by robots. There has to be a chink in the armour of their corporate scales or it’s time for them to go.

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