Thursday, 3 September 2009

Parliamentary Parades

The parliamentary term is a long and winding road, an epic adventure that leaves our steely MSP warriors bruised and broken when recess finally comes around. They look out on that new daunting journey this week as the legislative programme is unfolded, as the first joust of FMQs gets going and as Crap Holyrood Chat enjoys its latest relaunch (it's like Kylie Minogue's career here, mercifully without the gold hotpants).

Anyway, with this odyssey in mind, what better motion to kick off some Holyrood Chat with than this one on marches and parades....

S3W-26912 - Bill Butler (Glasgow Anniesland) (Lab) (Date Lodged Thursday, September 03, 2009): To ask the Scottish Executive how many marches and parades were held in 2008, broken down by local authority area.

I am sure Bill has his reasons but really, why would anyone need this information?

Anyway, hopefully CHC will enjoy this parliamentary parade with Mr Butler and his 128 colleagues right up to recess 2010.

If anyone wishes to join the site as an Editor, feel free to leave a message in the comments or get in touch with myself.

Quote of the Decade

This cannot be topped until after 2019 surely?

"Alex Salmond does not have any mandate in any way from the Scottish people"

Mike Rumbles

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

A Blast from the Past - Taking it Literally

I have been meaning to do this for ages, but Jeffs rallying call inspired me to revisit it.

A paltry 6 months ago, WWF (the panda lovers, not the wrestlers) held an earth hour which meant that people, if they cared about our dear circle of a world, were to turn off all their lights (and electricity if they were really committed).

The fact that this occurred during a vital world cup qualifier between Scotland and Holland did not deter dozens of MSPs from signing their support. Sadly for them, the crafty people at the WWF took their names and added them to a list of organisations and people who had effectively signed up to earth hour. The question is, how many of those MSPs can honestly say that between 8.30 and 9.30 on the 28th March they switched off their lights? We would be angry if mentioned business shut as Whyte and Mackay and Scottish Power Reneged on their green credentials, so step forward those listed MSPs (for some reason blogger will not let me paste - but they include Wendy Alexander, Rebel Malcolm Chisolm, Blogger Jamie Hepburn, Signing Sensation Stuart McMillan, and Sleepy Sir Jamie Mcgrigor) and tell us - were you really in the dark on that fateful night, or did you just lie as the Tabloids would lead us to believe you do every day?

Monday, 13 July 2009

Calman Shmalmam

S3M-04447 Kenneth Gibson (Cunninghame North) (Scottish National Party): Calman Commission A Wasted Opportunity

That the Parliament is disappointed with the rather timid recommendations set forth in the publication, Serving Scotland Better: Scotland and the United Kingdom in the 21st Century; believes that proposals merely to redraw Scotland’s complex relationship with Westminster would only perpetuate a complex constitutional mess; regrets that the outcome of this report seems largely predetermined by an unrepresentative unionist clique as evidenced by the convenient sidestepping of full fiscal autonomy and veto powers, the paucity of public meetings and the commission’s own stated objective of securing the union; recognises the National Conversation to be much more democratic in its deliberations, considering as it does all constitutional options; sees the Isle of Man and other crown dependencies flourishing through self-governance and wonders why Scotland is not recommended the same privilege; notes that these crown dependencies have long successfully governed in many areas that the commission appears to believe Scotland incapable of managing, such as varying the tax regime, setting energy policy, regulating health professionals, running the postal system and meeting our unique immigration needs; recognises that the Isle of Man, Jersey, Guernsey and the other Channel Islands, with a population of less than 200,000 among them, are entirely self-supporting, receive no subsidies from the United Kingdom and even make an annual contribution to Westminster for defence services; welcomes any increased powers but is disappointed that Scotland will still be denied its own oil revenues and considers limited borrowing to be a far cry from a long-term solution; agrees with those economists who state that the Calman recommendations are at best an opportunity missed and at worst a recipe for economic instability; acknowledges the sovereign right of the Scottish people to determine the form of government best suited to their needs, as stated in the Scotland Act 1998, and therefore seeks the public’s view on this non-consensus document through referendum; suggests that there is no reason why the Scottish people should not decide how they should be governed; believes that these issues could simply be resolved by full Scottish independence, as any other system would restrict Scotland’s potential as an enterprising nation, and looks to take Scotland forward following a positive result in the free and fair referendum that the Scottish Government proposes to hold in 2010.

For length, word choice, partisan approach and distinct improbability of ever gaining a majority this seems a suitable motion to perhaps jump start Crap Holyrood Chat with.

You can always rely on Kenny G....

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Football Focus

Finally back with some crap chat to report, and it is a cumulative effort as the parliament has recently been swamped with a pandemic, not of swine flu, but of cheesy football related motions that dont really say anything whatsoever. The criteria seems to simply be that you exist, you dont have to have had any success.

S3M-04055 Aileen Campbell (South of Scotland) (Scottish National Party): First Division Champions— That the Parliament congratulates St Johnstone FC on its promotion to the Scottish Premier League; notes the hard work of the team, manager and backroom staff and the dedicated support of the fans, and wishes the team all the very best for a successful season next year.

To be fair, St Johnstone did win the league, so this motion is forgiven.

S3M-04031 Willie Coffey (Kilmarnock and Loudoun) (Scottish National Party): Kilmarnock FC, Scotland's Oldest Professional Football Club at 140 Years Old— That the Parliament congratulates Kilmarnock Football Club on its 140th anniversary; recognises that the club is the oldest professional football club in Scotland and has played a significant role in the development of professional football in Scotland, and looks forward to the club’s continuing contribution to a strong and successful future for Scottish football.

They are 140, but any lover of Arsene Wenger esque free flowing football will doubt the statement that they have played a significant role in football in scotland.

S3M-4011 Cathy Jamieson: Auchinleck Talbot FC Citilink Scottish Junior Cup Final—That the Parliament congratulates Auchinleck Talbot FC in reaching the final of the Citilink Scottish Junior Cup; notes that the club has won the Scottish Junior Cup on seven previous occasions; wishes the team well for the final against Clydebank FC at Rugby Park, Kilmarnock, on 31 May 2009; also notes that the club is currently celebrating its centenary year, and thanks everyone associated with the club for their continued work in the local community.

However, there was no consensus on this note.

S3M-04040 Des McNulty (Clydebank and Milngavie) (Lab): That the Parliament applauds the renaissance of Clydebank FC, which sees the team reaching the Citilink Scottish Junior Cup final for the first time since its reinvention six years ago; acknowledges the tremendous work of the United Clydebank Supporters Trust in its tireless support of the team that started out with no funds and still has no home; thanks everyone associated with the club for their contribution to the local community, and hopes that Bankie fans will have every reason to celebrate on 31 May 2009.

There is a hint at least of achievement in those, but this:

S3M-03444 Hugh Henry (Paisley South) (Scottish Labour): St Mirren Football Club— That the Parliament notes that St Mirren Football Club was established in 1877 and is one of the oldest football clubs in Scotland; further notes that St Mirren Football Club was a founder member of the Scottish League in 1890 and moved to Love Street in 1894; acknowledges the club's success in winning the Scottish Cup in 1926, 1959 and 1987; notes that the move from Love Street to the new St Mirren Park stadium provides a tremendous new stadium that will benefit both the club and the wider community, and wishes St Mirren Football Club success both on and off the field in this new chapter in its long history.

But they are second bottom?

Youth teams aswell!
S3M-04043 Shirley-Anne Somerville (Lothians) (Scottish National Party): Hibs Under-19s SFA Youth Cup Win— That the Parliament congratulates Hibernian Football Club under-19s on their SFA Youth Cup win; notes that the final against Rangers was won by two goals to one; further notes the exciting game that went to extra time as both teams were drawn one each, and also congratulates Kurtus Byrne whose goal in the last minute of extra time gave Hibs its first taste of Youth Cup glory for 17 years.

Also, in true crap chat fashion, some motions are double dunters!

S3M-04066 Richard Simpson (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Scottish Labour): Congratulations to St Johnstone FC— That the Parliament congratulates St Johnstone Football Club in capturing the First Division championship and wishes the club well on its deserved return to the Scottish Premier League next season.

S3M-04010 Cathy Jamieson (Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley) (Scottish Labour): Kilmarnock FC 140th Anniversary— That the Parliament congratulates Kilmarnock Football Club on marking its 140th anniversary; notes that Kilmarnock FC is the oldest professional football club in Scotland; recognises that the club has been a great ambassador for Ayrshire and Scotland, and looks forward to further success on the pitch and as part of the local community

Saturday, 25 April 2009


How long will it take an outraged MSP to lodge a motion in Parliament slating David Starkey about his comments on Question Time?

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Finally, some crap chat to report

I honestly had no plans to make this an anti-Foulkes website but if he keeps lobbing up daft Motions and PQs then we at Crap Holyrood Chat will keep batting them back into the public eye.

George's latest is yet another example of a motion that I wager not one single person in the country would deem to be a worthwhile use of Parliament's resources:

S3M-03860 George Foulkes (Lothians) (Scottish Labour): Culture of SNP CronyismThat the Parliament notes the reimbursement paid to Brighton-based singer Sandi Thom for services to the Scottish Government; recalls the “dosh for dinners” incident where, in the early days of the SNP government, donors were wined and dined at the First Minister’s official residence; notes the appointment of an SNP councillor as head of the Scottish Qualifications Authority, an SNP supporter as head of the Scottish Futures Trust and an SNP donor as head of the Scottish Council of Economic Advisers; remembers the SNP policy to deregulate bus services and considers that the SNP abandoned that policy after the owner of a major bus operator gave substantial funds to the SNP’s 2007 election campaign, and finally recognises the First Minister’s admiration for Scots-born, Barbados-based, SNP donor Sean Connery whose return to Scotland would be the ultimate homecoming.

Fair play to our MSPs though, the quality of the motions and PQs has been fairly high recently.

Friday, 6 March 2009

A decent motion? Shock Horror

About time there was a motion to have a dig at George Foulkes, shame it doesnt mention the Jowly Jambo by name..

Short Title: Cost of Parliamentary Questions
S3M-03628 Ian McKee (Lothians) (SNP): That the Parliament, mindful of the answer to question S3W-17445 by the Minister for Parliamentary Business on 10 November 2008 that the cost of answering a parliamentary question is £98.51, notes that at least one member has asked over 1,000 questions in this parliamentary session, costing a total of over £100,000, and that if all members followed this example that the cost to the taxpayer would be nearly £13 million, or £26 million in a full session, and therefore requests all members to consider whether their question is really necessary before incurring yet more public expense

George Foulkes does it again

Hot off the press this one:

S3M-03621 George Foulkes (Lothians) (Lab):
That the Parliament calls on the Minister for Culture, External Affairs and the Constitution to retract his derogatory remarks about parts of Glasgow, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Stirling and Lanarkshire, made in his book, In Waiting: Travels in the Shadow of Edwin Muir, in October 1998; in particular calls on the minister to retract the comments that imply that Glasgow is too dangerous to get out of a car and that tenement closes are covered with the bodies of unconscious drug addicts, that describe the flag on Edinburgh Castle as “an awful mutant tablecloth”, that suggest that Dumfries is full of “skinny, ill-dressed women”, that Aberdeen is inhospitable and that Stirling is undesirable, and believes that it is against the interests of Scotland to have a minister who is responsible for promoting Scotland and its culture to be seen to continue to hold these views.

Heaven forbid that a politician would go out and, you know, actually meet people, talk to them and then tell it like it is.

For a better context on George Foulkes' rather carefully shown phrases, go to this blog and then decide if the eminently capable Mike Russell is a force for good or not.

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Long time, no crap chat

Crap Holyrood Chat seems to have been impressed by the standard of motions and PQs of late. I have to admit my infrequent amble into what is being said at the Parliament has not turned up anything worthy of inclusion here.

That is until today. I fear Jackie Baillie is on thin ice with this rather poor motion and, so, she is entered into the vaults.

S3M-03567 Jackie Baillie (Dumbarton) (Scottish Labour): SNP Fails Dumbarton AcademyThat the Parliament welcomes the decision by the Labour group of West Dunbartonshire Council to set a budget that included funding to enable a much-needed rebuilding of Dumbarton Academy; considers that the rebuilding of this 500-year-old school should be a priority; expresses considerable disappointment and anger that the SNP-led council failed even to consider the Labour group's proposals and voted against the rebuilding of the school; further expresses concern that, if the school is not rebuilt quickly, it will disadvantage thousands of young children in Dumbarton who are currently being denied access to the best educational environment possible, and therefore calls on the SNP to build a new Dumbarton Academy without any further delay.

A valid grudge perhaps, but a parliamentary motion? Save it for your campaign leaflets I think...

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Obama's Coat Tails

Of course there is nothing wrong with congratulating President Obama on a successful inauguration but there is something unmistakably cringey about this one:

S3M-03260 Alasdair Allan (Western Isles) (Scottish National Party)
Lewis Congratulates Island Connection for New President— That the Parliament welcomes the inauguration of Barack Obama as 44th President of the United States of America; notes the welcome tradition of new American Presidents identifying their ancestors around the world, and further notes the particular pride in Ness on the Isle of Lewis that President Obama has ancestors from the township of South Dell.

Scotland has never felt so small.

Saturday, 17 January 2009

George Foulkes - As unionist as they come

I understand that George Foulkes is mad keen on keeping Scotland inside the UK but not only do I find it strange that this zeal is taken to such lengths that he is troubled by the Tories choice of name, but I am annoyed that he uses our money to register his disapproval via a crap motion.

S3M-3195George Foulkes:Scottish Conservative and Unionist—That the Parliament notes with incredulity that the Scottish Conservatives have dropped the term unionist from their title just as the UK party has resumed its use following its electoral agreement with the Ulster Unionists and urges Annabel Goldie to end the confusion by reaffirming that the unionist credentials of the Scottish Tories remain intact.

Thanks George, the good people of the Lothians will be delighted with a hard days work there. 

Then again, given how often you put questions and motions up, I guess the above amounts to about 20minutes work on any given day!

Monday, 5 January 2009

A motion we won't see Kenneth Gibson lodge...

Short Title - 'Making the Parliament More Serious'

That the Parliament continues to be astounded by certain SNP members capacity to lodge turgid, utterly pointless motions such as 'Making the Parliament More Scottish'; notes that the processing of parliamentary motions costs money and should be used to raise issues of relevance and genuine importance to constituents; challenges Mr Gibson to find one member of the public who takes this sort of pish (fine Scottish word that so don’t accuse me of not wanting to make the Parley more Scottish!) seriously; recalls that, earlier this year, Mr Gibson's laid a motion praising his young daughter for winning a colouring in competition and pleads with the Kenny (sorry Kenneth) Gibson's of this world to stop wasting everyone's time with daft pedantic motions such as the one about wanting to make the Parliament more Scottish.