Thursday, February 25, 2010


Thursday Feb. 18Th. 2010 to Cotton Street for the full council meeting; the agenda suggested that it would be a quite event and no doubt the SNP led administration were hoping for just that; on arrival however their hopes were sunk as on approaching they saw a large crowd, a large; irate; raucous crowd. Loud hailers, banners; placards; in fact all the bits and pieces usually associated with a demonstration were in evidence, what made this one different though was the large number of children in attendance.

It was of course an education issue which has become synonymous with trouble for the SNP / Lib. Dems. in Renfrewshire. The fact that they have cut some £12 Million from the schools budget; devastated teacher numbers; got rid of classroom assistants; cut music tuition; left some teachers with no choice but to go into their own pockets to buy teaching materials; destroyed pupil and staff morale; reduced Renfrewshire to the worst pupil teacher ratios in Scottish secondary schools and second worst in primaries helps to explain that trouble and the very palpable anger of these protesters.

They were a good natured if angry crowd and the catalyst for this event was the SNP’s latest callous assault on some of our most defenceless citizens, children, a pattern emerges here as they have subjected the vulnerable elderly to uncaring attacks by taking away their wardens and now quite incredibly even for the SNP cancelled their annual trip ‘doon the water’ don’t be young and don’t get old under the SNP. This most recent assault on education takes the form of a cutback in school transport, under Labour; children who lived more than 2 miles from the school were given a bus pass now under this SNP gang it will be 3 miles, as many as 5/600 kids will now have walk to school some of them as far as 2.99 miles in all kinds of weather and over busy roads, the SNP say they have identified safe walking routes to school the parents and kids say that is absolute nonsense.

The protestors packed the council chamber and despite this not being an agenda item every Labour councillor who spoke managed to raise the bus issue to loud cheering from the packed gallery; this was a bad; bad day for the SNP/Lib. Dem. administration; they were vilified and rightly so, and believe me this aint over yet. The SNP councillors took a vow of silence claiming that it was not an agenda item even education convener Cllr. Cameron SNP said nothing and wrapped herself in the same craven defence. There is however no mess that the SNP can find itself in which can’t be made worse by the intervention of their hapless leader Derek Mackay; he of the feet full of bullet holes. During a debate on the Renfrew Ferry he all of a sudden blundered into the school bus issue much to the surprise and bafflement of his silent colleagues, Provost Lawson who chaired the meeting had spent a lot of time yelling at Labour councillors “school buses are not on the agenda it's out of order” she looked at her leader with an expression which I imagine she hasn’t worn since her children were very young, what can you say? he’s a born leader right?

What are the parents and children heated about? what might happen to worry them? Well; let’s see; if next January/February’s weather is anything like this year the pupils might not be in a fit state to learn anything by the time they reach school; will they be obliged to sit through lessons freezing and drenched to the skin; could that cause health problems? Is it possible that in such conditions truancy rates might rise; will that affect their advancement; here’s one for the Catholic Church; as the overwhelming number of children excluded will be Catholics will pupil numbers drop in Catholic Schools?

Last but certainly not least; God forbid but; what if one these debarred children who are forced to walk meets with an accident while going to school? not impossible in dark wintry mornings; ‘accidents happen’ I hear the SNP say which is of course true but; how are they going to feel, how is the child going to feel, the parents going to feel if it turns out that under a Labour administration the injured child would have been safe on a school bus. An appalling scenario but; one which on its own would persuade me to discard this truly heartless and reckless decision, it’s time for the SNP to think again and do the decent thing for once.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

(Cynical Highlander) The heilan supergrass 2

(Cynical Highlander) The heilan supergrass. 1 (1)

As you are unable to print my last posting I can only assume that you have something to hide and are afraid of the truth.
Publish Reject

I am perfectly able to print your last post; I am however refusing to do so and I'm delighted to explain why once again; it gives readers the opportunity to see what you people are like. Like your previous post you make accusations against people of wrong doing and; once again you display your usual cowardice in refusing to identify yourself; before we had blogs this was known as a "poison pen letter" and it has no place on my blog.

If and when (we won't hold our breath) you find the courage to crawl out from under your hielan stone; you can make all the accusations you like and I will print them.

Until then you will remain "the heilan supergrass feartie"

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

An old post.

This was sent and relates to a post "The horror" Etc. which is very old so I'm printing it here rather than spend a lot time looking back for it.

"The horror! The horror!" Joseph Conrad - (Heart o... (1) (anonymous) 23/02/10

more than a year later your savior sent in thousan... more than a year later your savior sent in thousands of troops for a war that could supposedly end "horror". but thats what we are, we are horrible beings enslaved by our intellect. If only we can be flowers in a field in a human-free world.
Publish Reject

You tell em mate, Give the b******s hell!

(Cynical Highlander) The heilan supergrass. 1

(cynical Highlander) 23 02 10

You still shrink away from naming yourself; you would like me to print your allegations against people but you refuse to do it; write to whoever you are accusing and make your allegations; tell them who you are and take it from there.

You really are a big heilan feartie; no wonder the English beat the c**p out of you so easily.

Monday, February 22, 2010


What are we to make of today’s rather hysterical press clamour about the so called revelations in a new book by a guy who used to be Andrew Rawnsley. What is there in the stories which would make us believe them, if you were going to believe that the Prime Minister of Great Britain Gordon Brown is a bully and a foul mouthed lout what evidence would you need to convince you of the veracity of the allegations. Who or what would convince you that he shoved a typist from her chair because she wasn’t typing fast enough and took over, are you prepared to accept that this man who is partially blind and needs type to be extra large to read it thinks he can type faster than a professional typist? Rawnsley says so; no one else can be found to back him up, is this enough for you? He (The P.M.) leapt across the room and grabbed an aide by the lapels and bellowed in his face “they are out to get me” this one comes from Rawnsley as well no one else wants to put their name to it apparently, and so on and so on.

Are you prepared to take the word of the ‘on his way down’ journalist Andrew Rawnsley when he can only offer sources such as ‘an aide’ ‘an insider’ ‘a civil servant’ ‘an adviser’ not one Joe or Jenny Bloggs among them! Brown’s opponents saw a chink of light when a bullying hotline project abandoned their proud policy of confidentiality by saying they had taken calls from No. 10 ‘I wonder why’ well, it turns out that the Project’s main patron is Ann Widdicome and the project has links to the Tories, one of its main members has already resigned, a certain Gary Cooper, he’s high tailed it out of there saying he is appalled by their behaviour. Widdicome would be a good advisor on bullying, as Home Secretary she insisted on women prisoners giving birth while chained to their beds, she is also a model Christian what more could you want?

Rawnsley has of course hit on the perfect shake down; he no longer enjoys much respect and is no longer taken seriously but; as the Observer’s chief political reporter he knows he can write a lurid ridiculous book and have it serialised in his own paper, clever eh? Meanwhile Labour in the last poll were 6 points behind the Tories who are reeling, I think that this manufactured attack on Brown will have the same effect as the fake outrage over the PM’s letter to the dead soldier’s mother which the right wing press and the Conservatives so viciously tried to exploit, that rebounded on them and so will this. If it is proved that Gordon Brown punched his desk and dashed his cabinet papers to the floor because of difficult news coming in from the bank failures or the war in Iraq etc. I would say good, that is how I would react and so would most others, it’s because he cares passionately about what he is trying to achieve for his country. The more we see of him the more we realize that he is opposed by political nonentities who enjoy success because of their backgrounds rather than talent. It’s been a bad day for Rawnsley, the once respected Observer and British politics and I warn you there will be more to come as the Tories and their rich privileged friends find it harder to survive the scrutiny which in fact is only just starting.

(Cynical Highlander) The heilan supergrass.

(Cynical Highlander) 22/02/10

(Cynical Cowardly Highlander) If you want to make accusations of illegal behaviour such as interfering with the due process of the law or financial corruption then identify yourself properly and I will print them. It is entirely in your hands, well?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Simon Peter famously denied Jesus 3 times and Salmond (the spiv) beat him easily by denying wee Nicola 5 times, that’s the number of times he was invited to give her his unequivocal support in an interview and he failed her 5 times: 6 if you include him sitting on his hands when asked by Ian Grey to raise his hand in her support in parliament. Swagger? oh yes, arrogance? oh yes, bawling? yup, shouting yup, but, support when the chips were down? no way: don’t be silly this is Salmond we are talking about: remember the golden rule of Salmondism: “what’s in it for me” he therefore abandoned her: she may well survive and limp on but he has distanced himself from her as all cowards do in such cases.

What led a clever: devious and utterly ruthless politician like her to make such a mess of things? I believe that the relationship between the SNP and the Asian community which she and the SNP are so obsessed with was largely to blame. She has been getting hammered in Govan for years and the Asian community was her ticket to success. She and the SNP courted them diligently to such an extent that they would have done anything to secure their support, that’s why the candidate teaching his wee girl how to shoot a Kalashnikov assault rifle survived, that’s why inordinate sums of money were given for Asian cultural events from SNP ministers some of which is unaccounted for according to today’s press. Think about the events in the Glasgow Asian Community, none are complete without a heavy SNP presence: that’s why lunches with the first minister and his deputy at the Scottish Parliament were auctioned to raise money for the SNP cause and that’s why she sent the quite unbelievable letter to the court to assist the convicted crook who happened to be Asian. Hubris of course played its part as you would expect with people like Salmond, Sturgeon and the SNP. I believe that most people can see through their cynical attempts to exploit the Asian Community including many Asians and the cracks are beginning to show. I hope that Asian voters will now look more closely at the SNP and strongly scrutinise their behaviour.

As if the above scandals are not trouble enough for the (wee spiv) the man with the hair style which resembles a Van Gogh (at his most loosely wrapped) wheat field is back. Yes folks the circus is back in town, prepare for the coming of the “Trump Bonnie Scotland Golf Club” The Scottish caddies and bar staff will no doubt be kitted out in Trump tartan, they will tug their forelock as ‘the maister’ Trump goes by and Salmond (the spiv) will be given an honorary life membership for services rendered. He might even get the Queen (decreed by the wee spiv to be Scotland’s queen after independence) to open the course. Prince wasisname Andy, the clown prince with the Scottish name will visit regularly to play a round, no doubt dropped off by one of his idiot nephews who will ‘borrow’ a helicopter for the journey. This is Salmond (the spiv’s) vision for Scotland where everything is for sale and we will live happily ever after under the benevolent reign of good Queen Bess before whom the first minister will grovel at every opportunity wearing his wee tartan breeks while the people cringe. Trump to Salmond “how much for Edinboro Castle? It would make a great hotel” “how much for Lock Lomond” “ what about those two neat bridges across the Forth” “how much for the Blarney Stone” “Bobby Burns’s cottage”? come on Alex it’s sell: sell: sell. Meanwhile Scotland bleeds and not one SNP member or supporter has anything to say, in this wild and beautiful place the Eagles in future will be golf shots and the magnificent raptor will go away for ever, Bravehearts anyone?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


How should a convicted prisoner spend his/her time in prison? We provide a cell, a bed: food: medical access etc. when a prisoner is sentenced what should be taken away? Should recreation be provided: education: access to a library: TV etc. Is it right to lock someone up for say 5 years and release them as they were when they came in e.g. unable to read and write in some cases: unable to do the most menial jobs because of a total lack of training in others. It might sound tough to deny them such things but does it work? Prison is there for two reasons: to punish and to rehabilitate: we do plenty of the former and very little of the latter if we are serious about cutting crime and prison numbers this has got to change. When someone is released he/she should be as ready as is possible to reintegrate in to society in a normal seamless way: it is important therefore that the prisoner feels that they have a stake in that society: that is why IMO they should be allowed to vote while in prison.

A huge number of prisoners are watching with interest to see if they will be allowed to vote at the next election: many of them will not be doing so out of any great desire to play their part in democracy: perhaps that will come later. Right now they are waiting to see if Britain will break the law by disenfranchising them: by law according to a European ruling they must be allowed to vote and can sue if denied that right: some no doubt will be hoping to sue rather than vote. Will Britain break the law and tell our own law breakers in jail that they will not be allowed to vote? A delicious irony: acting tough and ignoring European law has brought us to this embarrassing juncture: hell mend them. Prison reform is long overdue and voting rights for prisoners is part of that reform it has existed in more enlightened Europe for years and it’s time we caught up.

Sticking to matters of a legal nature: I argued with quite a lot of people about the release of the Libyan Mr. Megrahi I supported his release and was attacked for doing so. The usual saloon bar tough guys wanted him to rot in jail and dusted down the old nonsense about “life meaning life” and “no release under any circumstances” “let him rot and die in jail” blood curdling stuff which gets worse as mor drink is consumed. Yesterday we caught a glimpse of the reality of that policy from the USA our barbaric special friends across the pond. Deaf, wheelchair bound: nearly blind, with dementia and also mentally ill 94 year old Viva Leroy Nash died while waiting to be executed on Death Row: all in he spent 53 years in prison. This is the reality of vengeance not punishment or rehabilitation: if people want this kind of thing then they should study it close up and understand what it truly means. A 94 year old who is barely alive and knows nothing about his whereabouts or what is happening to him waits to die in some hellish gas chamber or gallows in the richest most powerful country in the history of the planet: support this if you must celebrate it if you think fit but IMO it reminds us that we are not that much further on from our cavemen ancestors.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


I know: I know: at my age I should know better, despite my many years in the Labour movement and my emersion in politics for approx. 45 years I have walked wide eyed into a malevolent storm. Fundamentally this has happened because I took my eye off the ball: I never expected that the people who are attacking me in such a nasty and deceitful way would actually pay me any attention: I always figured that they had more significant targets to aim at. Because I have not had a great deal of contact with them I also underestimated their malice and their willingness to do and say anything to harm those whom they target: at the moment that is me and it has been absorbing to watch them at their vile trade: I’ve learned a lot. I refer of course to the orchestrated campaign by the right wing bullies who inhabit the world of pro Israeli Zionism at it's most vicious.

If anyone cares to look at the Zionist sites Harry’s Place or C i S you will see what I mean. Once they have made up their minds that you are the enemy: reason, fact and decency fly out of the window. Over the years I have dealt with pro Israel commentators: most of them try to argue with me but it usually doesn’t take long for them to descend into personal abuse and viciousness as they realize A/ that they are not winning and B/ that they can’t intimidate me: the difference this time is that it is now hundreds of them who are learning this lesson rather than dozens.

Since this blew up I have maintained that some people: I guess of course that it’s them have been sending anti Semitic comments in my name to Blog Sites and doing their best to damage me. The perpetrators it would appear are not the smartest conspirators around: they started sending dozens of bogus comments to these sites without realizing that I have been blogging for years and I don’t comment on other sites so: if someone is to believe this c**p they must first figure out why having never commented on other blogs over the years did I out of the blue start firing out dozens of highly provocative anti Semitic messages with my name and picture on them. I know this rather serious clanger won’t deter them but: it makes them look like folk who need both hands to find their own arses.

Notwithstanding the fact that I have a written apology from the Guardian Web who have removed all the grubby lies about me and one of the foremost Zionist sites implicated has written admitting that I was being impersonated and also passing me details which will assist in tracing the culprits, some of these buffoons are still clinging to the fiction that it was me sending the comments: Israel could be in trouble with helpers like this.

I have to say again here that no amount of reasoning or explaining will be adequate for these people: they support a pariah state which is guilty of systematic brutality and crimes against the Palestinians. They are trapped into defending an indefensible position and that makes them very bitter and angry: bitter and angry enough to lie and twist anything that is said or written against Israel: their argument is as fraudulent as it gets: sustained by the fundamental position of screeching anti Semite at every person who dares to condemn Israel and its crimes. I am in no doubt that the majority of people will comfortably see through their sham and see that this is one Palestinian supporter that they will not scare off. People know that being anti Israel is not the same as being anti Jew: they know that being pro Palestine is not being anti Jew. The real enemies of the Jews are still out there and I'm not one of them: I do fear though that the behaviour of Israel is giving succour to those who would persecute them given the chance: the real anti Semites and Jew haters are still with us and vigilance is required not vicious lies and side shows. No matter how loud they scream their lies: no matter how much they try to coerce, bully or smear there are more than enough people who will stand up to them and I’m one of them.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010


Today our local paper here in Paisley (The Paisley Daily Express) printed a front page story in large print about me: it included a picture. Readers of this blog will know that a couple of weeks ago there was a rash of comments flying around the blogosphere claiming to be from me: some even carried my picture. These comments alleging to be from me were of a vile anti Semitic nature: their first destination was the Guardian’s web page who quickly issued me with an apology and took the comments down when I contacted them: a couple of other sites though despite knowing that I did not write the comments continued to print them and the abusive remarks about me which they received as a result of them. It may not be a surprise to you to know that the sites I refer to are right wing extremist Zionist blogs: at this point the picture begins to focus a bit: it would seem that someone has caught on to the fact that I am a supporter of Palestinian rights and am opposed to the State of Israel in the middle East conflict.

On trusted advice I decided to ride out the storm as it showed signs of dying down which indeed it did: just as things were almost back to normal I was contacted by the PDE who said that they had received a complaint or complaints (I’m not sure which) accusing me of stirring up hatred against Jews. At this juncture I contacted the police who are now investigating all this and treating it as a criminal investigation: needless to say all those involved are hiding behind anonymity except perhaps one: about whom more later: the Guardian and the blogs refuse to disclose who wrote the comments so think about that dear reader: anyone can write to these blogs and say anything about you: even pretend to be you and they will and can refuse to tell you who is doing it.

The people doing this and trying to damage me have found me guilty of something and it’s not anti Semitism: that suggestion predictably did not run: it was treated as I thought it would be with derision by all those who know me and my past record. No: what they have found me guilty of is supporting the Palestinians and condemning the State of Israel in the Middle East conflict: that phrase slips off my tongue very easily because I have been very careful over the years to always differentiate between the State of Israel and Jews: I am not alone in this: these people reserve their most vitriolic poison for Jews who oppose Israel’s actions: they scream anti Semite at me and a whole lot worse at them, their fellow Jews who disagree with them and Israel.

The PDE quotes someone called Ruth Renwick as writing the email complaining about me: I wrote a passage calling on a boycott of Israel to make them act in a decent way toward the Palestinians: I referred to their treatment under the Nazis and regretted that the sympathy which rightly flowed toward the Jews because of these atrocities was evaporating because of the behaviour of Israel. I have stated in other posts that this is a tragedy and that Jews were suffering because of Israel’s actions: a great many Jews are opposed to Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians and the Zionists hate them for that. If Ms. Renwick reads this and I hope she does I remind her that the boycott which me and millions of others supported against Apartheid South Africa was right and just and eventually successful: I am: along with many others calling for the same thing against Israel and that is not as she hints an incitement of hatred against the Jewish People: the very idea makes me sick. Perhaps she will engage with me in a discussion about this and try to clear the matter up: that would only be possible however if she does not consider opposition to Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians to be anti Semitic. A failure to differentiate between the two would render a discussion worthless, it’s up to her.

Saturday, February 06, 2010


I can’t remember a more obviously bogus show of anger and disbelief than that being shown by those who are apparently shocked at the conduct of Alex (the spiv) Salmond and his bag carrier Nicola Sturgeon. These two are hawking themselves to the top bidder by offering dinner in their company at Holyrood: takings (£13,000) to the SNP ‘thank you sirs please come again: booking not necessary in your case’. There has always been something fishy about Salmond and Sturgeon (ouch) Salmond in particular is the epitome of the political snake oil salesman and has been recognised as such for many years. Sturgeon is the political void and sycophant for ever at his side ready to wield the knife on anyone who falls foul of ‘the spiv’ Margo McDonald: Jim Sillars: Dorothy Grace Elder: ex treasurer Blackwood and many more less well known victims have witnessed her cold blooded malice. There is no real shock at their conduct from those in political circles who know only too well what the ethics of such people are: one question and one question matters to them “will we get caught” if the answer is no then do it: no ifs no buts just get it done: refuse and you are toast: that just about sums them up.

The frantic and abject attempt by an ‘SNP spokesperson’ to squirm out of this goes like this: “no dinner has taken place: no cash has changed hands and Salmond has asked for a ruling which he will agree to” He asked for a ruling after being rumbled! and we are to believe that he was going to do this anyway? It’s just a coincidence that he has asked for it after the story broke? Aye right! This is a man who was forced to turn down approx. £40,000 a year in wages from his Westminster salary because of the embarrassment of having two jobs and neglecting one of them: that of MP. In a quite shameful display of trickery he advertises the fact that he gives the money to charities: the charities are in his constituency and what most people outside of the area don’t know is that the money is dispensed under the name of his late mother Mary Salmond! £40,000 per year of charitable giving under the name of Salmond: what a guy eh? So he gets £40,000 of publicity in his own seat! There is no point in doing good without people knowing you are doing it is there Alex.

Who remembers the “Alex Salmond for first minister scam”? calculated to get his name at the top of the voting paper: officially allowed but: come on folks is this really the kind of person you can trust: I remember a local character who always reminded me of him: we used to say once you have shaken his hand, count your fingers and make sure your watch is still there.

The indignation is for effect: the papers are flagging up a tasty story but no one who knows Salmond (the spiv) is genuinely surprised: that would be like complaining that Derek (Del Boy) Trotter sold you a dodgy watch. all three of them: Salmond: Sturgeon and the SNP continue to bring shame and humiliation on Scotland: there are those who will be genuinely aghast at their conduct but not many from Scotland. Folk from further afield will gaze and scratch their heads: some will wonder what kind of country Scotland is with such people in charge: others might ponder the fact that these people want to govern an independent Scotland: I myself look at them and consider with ever increasing incredulity that they genuinely believe that they are capable of treading the world stage: God help us.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010


The TV docu/drama on Mo Mowlam was a must see and the casting of Julie Waters was inspired: after a couple of minutes she became Mo and was no longer Julie: quite an acting triumph when playing someone so cherished: prominent and so recently among us. I met her once and had the privilege of spending the day with her while on the election trail: this was the first Holyrood election and Mo. had kindly agreed to visit Paisley and Renfrewshire to drum up support for our Labour candidates Trish Godman: Wendy Alexander and Hugh Henry as well as the council candidates as the council election was being run in tandem.

Her entourage hit our election headquarters like a cyclone: accompanied by 4/5 big guys with bulging jackets and a enchanting springer spaniel which must have been the sniffing champion of the world as it stuck it’s nose in bags: pockets: cupboards and coats and discarded clothes: shoes etc. in fact all over the place: it growled and barked incessantly as if it was quarrelling with itself and still found time to play with the kids who were around the campaign team. The entourage was there of course because she was The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland which we all found out carries its own particular buzz about with it: whether it is a cheerful buzz or not I’ll let you decide: a wee bit tense I’d say. Mo. was as they say here in Scotland “a big wumman” she was on steroids for her cancer treatment and she wore a wig or her “Irish” as she called it i.e. (Irish Jig = Wig) which caused her to get angry occasionally: she thought nothing of tearing off the wig and scratching her bald head with the cry “this F*****g thing is driving me daft” she would do this in the middle of a busy street or shopping centre which gave some of us palpitations: saying to her “please don’t do that Mo. was not on though” : no one would have volunteered for the job in any case. One of her ‘minders’ gave me a bit of information on how to spot the people guarding a potential target and it is spot on “look at the couple of guys in the crowd who are the only ones not looking at Mo. they are guarding her” he said and he is dead right: try it the next time you see a powerful politician making a visit and you will see them.

The day was a roaring success as she drew crowds everywhere: all and sundry wanted a picture with her and she obliged: everyone got a hug and a kiss as well as she stormed her way through the town her personality was huge and people took to her: her down to earth ways and no nonsense no airs and graces style left everyone charmed. The highlight of the day was her visit to the Paisley Youth Theatre at the Museum: daughter Rayleen was there and she is an ex stalwart of the Youth Theatre: she knew them all and she helped to show her round and explain the activities taking place: the mood was great and the crowd of talented out going children doing dance and drama quickly got her involved she loved it and so did they; it was an unforgettable day.

She was of course a very serious politician and had a very gifted political brain: she did not lose many arguments: her time in Northern Ireland was fertile and the agreements which were ultimately reached were down in no small measure to her hard work. Some of the old guard did not take to her but she tackled everyone head on: she would break off a meeting to make tea for everyone and once told the stern Ian Paisley to “F**k off” she would also theatrically dash her wig on to the table while growling ‘sotto voce’ “Jesus F*****g Christ” a big no no in Hell’s Fire Ulster. She was also fond of taking her breaks with the cleaners and tea ladies who adored her.

Her early demise was undeniably tragic not least because we were deprived of the opportunity to see where she might have got to: she unquestionably had the ability to reach the very top of the “greasy pole” as Disraeli described the job of Prime Minister. I strongly suspect that one very influential politician knew that very well. Tony Blair removed her from the N. I. job at the height of her success and popularity: that was inexplicable but: many of us cast our minds back to an incident at conference when Tony Blair was addressing the audience. Mo. arriving late to take her platform seat, discreetly walked on stage at the back to take that seat and the hall rose as one to give her a standing ovation: Blair: great operator that he was of course joined in: his smile though was like the brass plate on a coffin: that in my judgment was the instant that her career hit the buffers. What Prime Minister would want an immensely successful and very popular minister climbing her way upward through cabinet with a dazzling personality and a mind like a gin trap? one who could stop the Prime Minister in full flow while he was delivering a speech by merely walking softly to the back of the stage: the knife was whetted there and then.
Like Barbara Castle: John Smith: Tony Benn: Dennis Healy et al: she is another who will be talked of by people who will start by saying “see that Mo. Mowlam: what if”?