Monday, 13 September 2010

Bully or Investor?

Yesterday, I had written part of a post about Trump and his golf course in Aberdeenshire, when one of my readers mentioned a newspaper article in a comment. My post was related to that particular article and it was then I realised I had to come off the fence about Trump's golf complex on the Menie Estate in Aberdeenshire. Until now I've given the American the benefit of the doubt, thinking it would improve the economy of Scotland, but I have to confess I was wrong.

The comment, from cynical Highland, which affirmed my thoughts was:

'This man is a far greater danger SB as he will overide our liberties for alleged economic reasons.'

Who is 'this' man'? Donald Trump.

A couple of documentary film makers, Anthony Baxter and Richard Phinney, were shooting a piece about the impact of the resort on residents and how Trump received planning permission. They are reported to have been filming allegations that the water supply was cut off to local residents for some days. George Soros, Donald Trump's mouthpiece in this project, insists the problem was 'immediately rectified'. Wouldn't Scottish Water be involved in such an incident? For a pipe to be damaged, whether accidently or not, it's not a case of clicking a button on a computer to rectify the situation. It takes days to rectify pipe problems and for Soros to say the pipe was repaired immediately is a lie. No such repair can be done immediately. Living where I do I know full well, that with the full attention of Scottish Water, even such a small problem takes at least 3 days.

I digress from the point of this post. Why did the police arrest the two documentary makers for breach of the peace, hold them for hour hours, handcuff one, take their DNA, take photographs and fingerprints just because George Soros phoned them to say these two film makers had 'burst' into Menie House, Trump's home at the resort when they insist that Trump's local manager, Paul O'Connor, freely agreed to be interviewed on camera and that their film proves they entered the building with permission and never filmed any documents.

Soros states:

\We genuinely have an open-door policy [but] it's not acceptable to have two people burst into an office unannounced.'

The statement by Soros that the documentary makers filmed documents is either correct or lies. The two documentary makers insist their film will show they are lies. I can't believe that Soros didn't have enough staff around him to stop two men accessing his filing cabinet(s).

It's not often I'm on the side of unions, but the NUJ require support in this matter. Also there's the serious question about the reaction of the police. Here, in this rural area, police behaving in such a manner would be questioned. It's now up to the people of Aberdeenshire if they want to question the Trump organisation's tactics to avoid openness in their dealings.

My thought is that every Scot wants a fair and sensible police force. In this case it would appear Grampian Police have acted on impulse rather than knowledge. Could it be that they were biased because a foreign investor is more important than the freedom of British journalists. There's an underlying murkiness here from both Trump and Grampian Police.

To those of you in Scotland and abroad who said Scotland would rue the day they allowed Trump to be involved in owning land in this country, my sincere apologies for saying you were wrong.


Alex Porter said...

Hi Rosie,
There was never any doubt in my mind that Trump is not to be trusted. That was not the issue before and was confused with it.

Trump had and has the same rights as anyone who wants to apply for planning permission etc. He can't be stopped on the basis that he has a bad business reputation. And Soros is not my and never will be my friends either.

The problem with his application was that he was in the right and denying him his rights was a complete joke of democracy.

In trying to pin the blame on the SNP for a foolish set of decisions made by other parties in council chambers, campaigners stupidly forced the government to protect his rights and so him too.

I think there are ways to deal with the man and many others like him but that was certainly not one of them!

cynicalHighlander said...

He's not someone we should be encouraging to invest in this country as Scots culture isn't about greed.

Billy said...

Funny was this not the same police force who arrested a journalist for trying to get an independent inquiry into the Holly abuse scandal?

Captain Ranty said...

This splendiferous golf course is not far from me.

Locals in suppport are thinking short term. The nay-sayers have the right of it:

Trump will screw us all.

Nuff said.


subrosa said...

Hi Alex. Aye, John Swinney was damned if he said yes and damned if he said no to this development. The councillors had made that scenario and forced the decision.

What worries me is the power they seem to have with the police. Since when did we have such heavy tactics up here?

subrosa said...

Afraid you're right CH and I was wrong. It is about greed and power, nothing more.

subrosa said...

It was Billy but I think there was a lot more to that situation than we'll ever know.

This is a different situation altogether but I still don't like their tactics.

subrosa said...

It's not far from me either CR. We can't allow the man or his henchmen to use our police as their personal security company though.

Indyanhat said...

Sorry Rosie but just exactly how do you think you will be able to stop the police doing what the money (read power) tells them to do?

cynicalHighlander said...

Don't be afraid SB as we are all infallible but this man disgusts me in his arrogant condescending manner that he knows better than natural processes. As to the police just look at the 'club' that most council workers (NE area) are members of will answer their motives. very annoyed.

Andrew BOD said...

Subrosa, I disagree.

"It is about greed and power, nothing more."

I'm afraid that's capitalism whether you like it or not, and the same could be described about most large companies.

Trump is not providing a public service, but he is providing a heck of a lot of inward investment, and will hopefully leave a legacy which will play a part in sustaining the future economy of NE Scotland.

As far as dirty tricks go, hopefully those investigating the complaint will get to the bottom of it and justice will prevail. Anything said just now is mere conjecture and conspiracy theories. If it is indeed proven I hope proper punishment is meted out. If it is not proven, I'm sure everybody on this thread will just put it down to a police cover-up.

I see nobody has mentioned the theft and damage to construction equipment on site, the reason why Grampian Police are monitoring the site closely. Or the fact that 'Plane Stupid' are closely associated with actions against the development, not necessarily legal actions either, and have implied further action in the future. No wonder the police are jumpy.

And yes, you'll probably have guessed I'm from Aberdeenshire. Only locals could support such a tragic development.

subrosa said...

Andrew, I didn't know about the damage to construction equipment. My friends who live there are currently in Dubai so I'm not up to date.

The police may be jumpy but they've got to show fairness. That's the point I was trying to make.

Of course Trump and his ilk are only in it for the money. I'd like to think he will leave a legacy but living not too far from you surrounded by a multitude of golfers, not one has said they would consider playing his course. Why should they when the likes of St Andrew's is less than an hours drive and the same for Gleneagles. Plus here there are 5 course and 4 have waiting lists for membership.

You may say that's not the people he wants to attract, but they'll be his bread and butter. His hotel won't be full all the time and may well turn out like the Carnoustie one.

As for Plane Stupid their fines should have been much greater. They're a danger to all of us these people.

JuliaM said...

Ah, I wondered if anyone had spotted this yesterday. The 'Guardian' didn't give it the prominence they normally would have for a 'bullying rich capitalist vs journalist's story, did they?

I've got a post cued up later for this week. Will link.

RMcGeddon said...

I see the P&J are reporting that the compost maker and builders yard / machinery storage etc are being built up against the main objector's property. All against the initial plans put in for the golf course.

subrosa said...

No it was strange I couldn't find it elsewhere Julia. It'll be good to read your take on it, as always.

subrosa said...

It'll get passed RM. The council are now stuck between a rock and a hard place.

The 5 homeowners that Trump wants out will be hounded until they give up because they can't take the pressure. Sad but true.

PS thanks for the link. Hadn't got round to reading the P & J yet.

Allan said...

I was against this from the off, and the sight of Aberdeenshire councillors and a local MSP seduced by American dollars on Newsnicht confirmed my fears that something's have taken place to make sure this has gone ahead, look at the splintering of the Lib Dem group in Aberdeenshire council for proof of that. As I remember it, New Labour were all for this as well.

IMO the claims that this would be a boost to the scottish economy was always going to be a false one. A lot of the visitors would be housed behind a gated area, and the claim that this would help employment... well how many Scottish voices do you hear working in hotels in this country? Proof if any that the SNP are no slouches in the "parcel o rougues" stakes compared to their... er... "Unionist" rival's.

subrosa said...

Labour were all for it Allan. Jack even took Trump in a wee trip in a helicopter to view his 'estate'.

It'll be interesting to watch just how successful it is. Of course all Trump's hangers on will drop by to offer their dollars for a game but once they've been and gone who will replace them?

Weekend Yachtsman said...

"Why did the police arrest the two documentary makers for breach of the peace, hold them for hour hours, handcuff one, take their DNA, take photographs and fingerprints..."

Money talks, that's why.

And Trump is a ruthless b*****d who is determined to get his way whatever.

The spineless "useful idiots" who allowed this man to have his way in their country should be hanging their heads in shame.

How many more golf courses could we possibly need, for heaven's sake? The whole place is carpeted with them as it is. All it will mean is a load more over-rich Yanks throwing their ignorant weight about in Scotland. Local jobs? Don't make me laugh; a handful of minimum-wage skivvies is all it will amount to, and most of those will go to immigrants.

Forgive me if I sound bitter.

subrosa said...

You're forgiven Weekend Yachtsman. I've a sour taste in my mouth about this these days too.

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