Thursday, 26 February 2015

‘Parent’ Will Be A Defunct Word In Scotland

The merry-go-round continues its way gathering nonsense rather than moss.  Moss be be more useful than some of the Scottish Government’s policies which could well have dangerous consequences in the future.

The words ‘wife’ and ‘husband’ have been replaced by ‘partner’ these days more often than not and politicians - particularly Scotland’s politicians - seem determined to ensure ‘parent’ will be gone from Scottish society within a decade.

Paperwork concerning children now reads ‘guardian or carer’ and some of the  forms I’ve read recently don’t even bother to ask the relationship of the ‘guardian or carer’ to the child(ren).  I don’t suppose that matters now because the role of parents is so diminished.  Gone are the days when nobody, and I mean nobody, overruled parental opinion. Teachers had to spend time talking with parents to ensure approval was given for any change of itinerary, but no discussion takes place nowadays - with the exception of Parents Evening, which I am informed is really a tick box exercise rather than an in depth progress report.

We didn’t have Parents Evening when I was at school. We had a home register (a form of 5 day school diary) in which any teacher could communicate with a child’s parent.  The parent was expected to read the home register daily and sign on the dotted line to confirm the details (if any) had been noted.  If a parent was unduly anxious about a particular problem then an appointment was made to discuss it with the rector.  The system worked and worked well as a simple discipline tool.  No child wanted negative comments in their home register.

I digress.  Several times now I’ve written about the Scottish Government’s GIRFEC policy and argued against the case for a ‘named person’ - other than a parent - to be attached to a child from birth until they reach 18 years of age.

Now new guidelines issued last week states that the named person could be involved with families in ‘setting up planning and support’ during the last trimester of pregnancy,

This ‘named person’ part of the child protection policy has become completely Orwellian. As well any child born in Scotland from 2016 being owned by the state, they now want involved at pregnancy. Fortunately this would have to be done on a ‘non-statutory basis’ because unborn children are not covered by the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014, but will that deter the Righteous who want to own us from cradle to grave?  I doubt it.

The NO2NP Campaign is running road shows this month. Unfortunately I missed the one in Dunfermline a couple of weeks ago and Dingwall and Glasgow are rather too far. It also has a ‘take part’ page on which helpful advice is given should you get the opportunity to write to a national/local newspaper or speak on radio.

I’ve written to my MSP about this twice and had no reply. That is most unusual.  Tonight I will write again and insist upon a response because this is the most dangerous legislation for parents.

If it goes through ‘parent’ will become a non-word is Scotland. Let’s get out there and do our bit to stop this happening.

Monday, 23 February 2015

Corrupt Politicians? You Bet!

Courtesy of the Telegraph, we can remind ourselves how our political masters work for us; or in this case works for himself.

Jack Straw has been caught in the act too. His salary isn’t enough for him either so he charges £5,000 a day for his services.

Will this corruption ever stop?  Of course not. We’ll hear the usual response of ‘suspended’ and ‘disgraceful’ but that will come from those who will be very relieved it wasn’t them in the frame.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

A Political Analyst’s View of Scotland and the General Election

I’m not a regular reader of the Guardian as it’s rather too left wing for my liking, but there is an interesting article in it this morning

A few days spent blethering with the political classes here in North Britain hasn’t made made Lewis Baston any wiser he says, but he considers himself to me ‘considerably better informed’. Am I missing something there?  I always though information contributed towards wisdom even in a minuscule way.

The comments may turn up a few gems too by the end of the day.

Monday, 16 February 2015

Common Purpose

Over the years quite a few commenters have asked others what CP (Common Purpose) means.  As most of us know now, it is a political ‘charity’ which supposedly creates ‘Future Leaders of Society’.  Many who attend their training courses are prominent in public service.

It’s been said, on more than one occasion, that Common Purpose is the equivalent of the Masons.  I wouldn’t know because I know little about the Masons except that it is similar to an ‘old boys’ network.

Last week I came across this list of Common Purpose ‘graduates’ and though it may interest you.  I doubt if every graduate has been listed but it’s interesting to note how many are defined as being in education.

If you wish to look for a particular name type the name in the relevant box then click ‘apply’. All names with that letter will appear.

Friday, 13 February 2015

More Aberdeen Council Problems

click to enlarge

This week I seem to have been watching a little more television than usual in the evenings. It’s astonishing the difference in the broadcasting networks and what they classify as headline news.

The other evening STV had a headline about Aberdeen councillors and their 'pro-the Better Together campaign’ which was sent out last June prior to the referendum,  It accompanied the council tax bills for Aberdeen residents. STV provided substantial detail in their report.

Out of interest I changed to BBC1’s Scottish news at 6.30.  The matter wasn’t reported until the last five minutes of that programme when Jackie Bird’s report took no longer than 10 seconds and contained no video or detail.

The image above is part of the letter agreed by 7 councillors and was signed by the then council leader Barney Crockett.

An SNP MSP complained to Audit Scotland that the councillors had misused the council facilities but Audit Scotland’s reported that, although the move was unusual, the letter stated an accurate account of council policy.

Unhappy with Audit Scotland’s report in November it was announced that the seven councillors would face a Standards Commission investigation concerning their missive.  The hearing started this week and the Aberdeen Press and Journal has given a good account of yesterday. (I did have a chuckle at the chief legal officer’s remark ‘I believed I was dealing with an intelligent bunch of people ...).

The former Aberdeen City Council chief executive Valerie Watt had been due to appear before the hearing vida video link yesterday but she pulled out at the last minute.  The hearing chairman described her late call off as ‘disrespectful’ and ‘bordering on contempt’, but it appears Mrs Watt, who is now chief executive for Northern Ireland’s Health and Social Care Board, was "not available and has no further comment to make”.  Strange that a person who held such a senior position - and still does - should behave in such a manner isn’t it?

Aberdeen councillors don’t have a good reputation in the area and this incident shows how they can misuse their powers.

Will they get a slap on the wrist, suspended for a year or the maximum punishment of a five year suspension?  Your guess is as good as mine but I do know that many Aberdeen residents will be irate at their hard earned money being spent on public hearings involving their elected representatives.  Best thing they could do is vote with their feet at the next council elections and ensure those before the hearing never get the chance to represent them again.


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