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The truths they don't want you to read....

Saturday, December 26, 2009

A rotten burgh?

With an electorate of about 21,500 at the coming election the two main parties will each spend close to the maximum they are allowed by law. Or possibly just a tiny fraction more, if they think they can get away with it.

The maximum allowed, per constituency, is current just over £7,000, meaning that the SNP and Labour will spend about £14,000 and share 80% of the vote, with the other parties spending perhaps another £6,000 between them. So a total spend of £20,000.

Except that there is an exception to this general rule. Any political party can spend a total of £30,000 per constituency contested, on the wider -national - PR campaign.

It is with a huge degree of discomfort, nay disgust, that I see that the Scottish Christian Party are entering into the battle for the Western Isles constituency, and are using their full allowance of £30,000 in the one seat.

It may be within the law, but it is certainly not what was intended; to effectively allow one campaign to try to buy the seat by outspending the total of all the other parties by 50%.

That the SCP appear to be planning not on victory, but simply to unseat the SNP for being responsible for the introduction of Sunday ferries to Lewis, may to a very small extent change the perception from vainglorious self-aggrandisement by the Rev Hargreaves, to a deliberate "Anyone but the incumbent" campaign; and may give it some veneer of respectability, but it still leaves me with a distinctly unpleasant taste in my mouth.

Even allowing for paying for the open primary - election advertising in all but name - the lucky candidate will be spending more on general advertising in each of the months after their nomination than the main parties will spend in the whole campaign.

With the wider Christian community lining up behind the good Rev's plan, the successful outcome for the SCP is almost certain and I forecast that the SNP majority of 1,441 will be overturned and, subject only to a half-decent candidate for the SCP, a SNP loss is a virtual certainty, as the SCP will get 10-15% of the vote, just by virtue of their spending power.

One final thought for those who plan to participate in the open primary, or be active for the SCP, which comes from Proverbs 22:7, and seems entirely appropriate to the role of Rev Hargreaves:

"The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender."


Anonymous said...

I agree with almost all you have said in this blog.
However John Macleod is not the wider Christian community and certainly doesn't represent my view.
I have no truck with 'Christian' parties and believe if Christians are interested in politics they should ally themselves with the party that appeals to them and try to influence them the same as any other individual does.
I would imagine that, some Sunday observance issues apart, most people hold the same values of common decency, fairness and humanity.
Indeed the differences of opinion over Sunday observance (especially Sunday ferries)are just as prevalent between christians, and between non christians, as they are between christians and non christians. Some people just use these issues to vent their personal prejudices

Anonymous said...

Leaves a pretty sour taste in my mouth too and the ostentation will be seriously offputting. However, would you really say "the wider Christian community" is lining up behind the plan? I don't think JM speaks for many, and any candidate will be divisive; no amount of money thrown at it will change that.

It is, regardless, a COLOSSAL waste of cash that could be put to much better use elsewhere, and I don't mean trying to screw things up in some other community. I reckon most Christians will see that, and know that whatever one's position on Sunday sailings, this is the last place that needs a one-issue candidate.

It will be interesting to see how they do though - how many people here will really thinking making a point to the SNP and/or godless sinners is more important than trying to keep these islands going.

Anonymous said...

Oh dear, Mr Nicolson. You are so wrong. Mr John Macleod is not the wider Christian community. He is one confused and desperate individual - as those who know him well will cheerfully admit.
That Mr Macleod is allying himself with a charlatan's campaign to promote himself which is entirely funded by the proceeds of dance music for homosexuals may be interesting but it is not surprising.
The so-called "wider Christian community" is not confused - about either of them.

Anonymous said...

what annoys me is that the only party in my opinion worth voting for, The Green Party - have no candidate here. Would never vote for either of the snp or SCP jokers

Anonymous said...

Well I quite like Sinita personally and I'm not gay!!!

Anonymous said...

Would be very interesting to see if the SCP system allows for the emergence of a thoroughly decent and honest individual truly representative of the views of the wider community, but not necessarily all those of the Rev Hargreaves.

PS If I want to throw my hat in the ring, would it be more advantageous to have the obligatory Road to Damascus moment before or after the excesses of the New Year?

Anonymous said...

In the ranks of the present Labour Party there can be no Christians in the true sense of the word so apart from a few deaths amongst their support since the last election which will be covered by the recruitment of a few new 'intellectuals' their head count will remain the same. So where is the Christian vote to come from? And will there be enough Christians voting for that party to take the seat? It's a dilemma for sure.

Anonymous said...

Re - 5.42 pm

Think there's a thousand more important issues than Sunday ferries to most Christians. Poverty, the inequalities in the world, justice etc are all far more crucial than whether a motor vehicle can (or cannot) cross the Minch on the Sabbath day.

However, I do believe that AB has brought this on his own head. Whether or not he agrees with a particular view, an MP has a duty to recognise the rights of those who express it, responding to their opinions in a thoughtful and considered manner. The only exception I would make to this are people who are indulging in racial hatred or acting in another unacceptable way. Objecting to a Sunday ferry does not fit into this category.

As their elected representative, neither he nor the MSP had no right simply to ignore the letters sent into him on this subject. It was a complete abdication of an important democratic duty on their part and was absolutely inexcusable.

In the name of common decency, fairness, and humanity, it is the people whom we disagree with that most deserve our consideration.

The others are far too easy!

Anonymous said...

2.33pm I like to have my Damacine moments on a Monday morning - although generally they have abated by Tuesday afternoon. As for throwing hats in rings, leave it until the Tuesday to decide. Otherwise you may end up arguing about religion with people who have a need of it. YMCA its fun to go to the YMCA. Not.

Anonymous said...

3:41pm - Cybernat still at it even though those from above have told you to cool it for a while...

I almost chose to ignore your comment but feel that it is worthy of a comment.

If there are no "true Christians" in the Labour party then your lot had better watch out because it means that the abdication will be from your party.

Anonymous said...

Re - 3.41 pm

Clearly an illiterate. Read the twists and turns of the incomprehensible 53 word sentence in his effort.

But even that pales into significance when one considers the twisted nature of the individual's mind. No one who was ever a Christian could come out with such a sweeping over-statement and generalisation.

Anonymous said...

3:41 I am a christian who (SO FAR) has never voted anything but SNP. HOWEVER, your statement that no one in the Labour party can be a christian is wrong and ignorant! Being a christian does not automatically make you one party or the other. There are flaws in ALL the parties - JUST THE SAME AS IN ALL THE CHURCHES - your challenge as a Christian (should you choose to accept it...) is to decide which is the least flawed, or failing that which is the big issue you wish tackled! L.S