Tuesday, May 22, 2012
‘Deer Muncher’ and SNP list MSP Joan McAlpine sets out 10 pitiful reasons for voting for independence, subjective opinion and fantasy politics howlers
Joan McAlpine is a list SNP MSP.
She is controversial and gaffe prone.
I call her the ‘The Deer Muncher’ because I always have the image of her standing munching away on a reindeer leg ripping the flesh off with her teeth in the Holyrood Chamber.
The Deer Muncher!
In the Daily Record, she has put up 10 'good' reasons why Scotland should vote yes to independence.
She has given her reasons, so here is my response as an SNP Member.
“1 Scotland would officially be one of the world's richest countries - ranked 6th in the OECD compared to the UK's 16th place. We have 24billion barrels of oil remaining in the North Sea, according to industry body Oil and Gas UK. That's £1.5trillion in today's prices - half as much in value as has been taken out”.
Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Iraq are all oil rich countries and their people live in squalor. So, that argument is shaky and not backed up by anything which indicates the SNP plans wealth distribution, they aren’t.
If you are poor now, you will be poor in an independent Scotland.
“2 We also have around 25 per cent of Europe's potential offshore wind and tidal energy - and a tenth of Europe's wave power. An extra 45 per cent of renewable energy was generated in Scotland last year, according to the UK Department of Energy. It's more than we need and can be exported for cash”.
People in Scotland now are living in energy poverty, the renewable industry is heavy subsidised. The infrastructure isn’t in place and the technology isn't far enough developed, let alone the businesses to install the infrastructure in the first place.
“3 Other countries want to invest here. The recent Ernst & Young UK Attractiveness Survey highlighted Scotland's leading position in the UK for job creation from international investment. With independence, we can make the country even more attractive to these employers”.
This is speculation, independence may make Scotland attractive if the conditions are right, but likewise other countries can make their conditions better.
“4 Independence will allow us to keep services such as the NHS and the welfare state. In England they are being privatised and cut. Benefits are being taken from the needy and the Scottish Parliament can't stop that under present powers”.
The SNP already has control of the NHS by virtue of being a devolved government. If Labour got in pre or post indy they could privatise the NHS, that argument is complete nonsense. Likewise on benefits, she assumes that the SNP will always be the government for her argument to make sense.
“5 Scotland has five of the top 200 universities in the world. We also punch well above our weight in the number of research papers they produce. It means our historic reputation as a well educated nation is flourishing. We give our universities one of the best packages of support in Europe, with no fees for students from Scotland. With independence we can do even more”.
If you accept her analysis, what more? It isn’t the number of research papers that are produced that makes the difference; it’s the content that matters.
“6 We'll have more money in our pockets. If we got back what we sent south in tax, official figures show every Scot would have £510 more a year. The only tax the Scottish Government controls just now is council tax, and it's frozen under the SNP. Imagine if we controlled fuel duty, national insurance, VAT and income tax”.
We have tax raising powers, so she is wrong, the SNP didn’t keep the payments up to HMRC. Let’s ‘imagine’, fuel duty, national insurance, VAT and income tax are all in SNP hands, there will be no dramatic reductions, not for years if at all, reserved issues such as defence need capital and no proposals have been published that in anyway state that there will be reductions. Again, change government at Holyrood, what guarantees?
“7 Our government would be more streamlined. Scotland, like Denmark, New Zealand, Norway and Finland, is a goldilocks country - not too big and not too small. The UK wastes money on bloated institutions bogged down by bureaucracy - look at HMRC, the tax authority. It's gone from one calamity to another. The rich get away with evasion while the rest are overcharged”.
At this point it is worth mentioning that there are no blueprints on how the SNP would run the taxation service or the rate, or the actual legislation itself. And as Holyrood is full of second class politicians with limited ability, can we really expect a tax system that effectively challenges the rich?
“8 Mobiles would work and we'd all get high-speed broadband. Telecommunications are controlled in London. Westminster auctions licences to phone companies but only demands 90 per cent coverage of the UK. This means "notspots" in much of Scotland. Broadband is patchy too, and it doesn't help that Scotland's capital budget has been cut by a third by the Tories”.
We are talking about the provinces here, I find no problem getting computer access, mobiles already work so that argument is oh so weak as Joan McAlpine runs out of genuine ideas.
“9 Our culture would get a boost. We'd have control over broadcasting and more high-quality programmes could be made here. Our news would no longer look hand-knitted compared with well funded UK offerings. We could export high-quality drama and our young bands would have a platform on the radio”.
There is no evidence to substantiate that claim as far as I can tell, yes, if Scotland becomes independence it will be news but the news agenda moves on, post indy Scotland will look the same.
“10 Imagine the goodwill. Scotland is held in high regard around the world - by those who know us. But being buried in brand Britain means sometimes we don't get to shine as we should. Independence would generate global interest. We would be the new kid on the block - young, modern, and happening”.
That is just as they say in Housing schemes, just crap Ms. McAlpine.
“We would be the new kid on the block - young, modern, and happening”.
And we aren’t already with an SNP majority government?
My analysis of SNP list MSP Joan McAlpine, she is in the Scottish Parliament as Alex Salmond’s aide to write his book, she isn’t an effective MSP, she isn’t effective as a campaigner; she is gaffe prone and her record of activism from the 17 campaigns I was involved in was incredibly poor.
She is one of SNP publicly unelectable and a political liability!
The ending of her book should be, ‘Scottish Independence remains very much a live dream’ because in 2014, the attempt is doomed to failure.
Ms. McAlpine aptly demonstrates why?
There is a lack of substance even among the SNP MSPs such as herself .... and she is Alex Salmond’s aide!
The Daily Record really pays her £400 a week to write articles?
£400 for this!
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University