I remember in 2010, the SNP ran with a slogan for Westminster called ‘elect a people’s champion.’
As a slogan it was a fair piece of PR political campaigning, but at the ballot box, the acid test on the day was a resounding no thanks from the Scottish public.
When Joan McAlpine entered Holyrood, it was because she was part of the Salmond clique, despite being a member of the Maryhill & Springburn SNP branch, she never attended any meetings I was at, and I never saw her at any by-elections.
Is Joan McAlpine a People’s champion?
I think not.
Since her election, she has been promoted to be Salmond’s aide, which is all the more remarkable given she has a lack of political activism.
Pretty soon she established herself as Euan McColm said as ‘Queen of the Cybernats’, gaffe after gaffe followed like leaves falling in autumn.
As a hobby Ms McAlpine established herself as an SNP road safety crusader.
Road safety is pretty good stuff for an MSP, a topic that drifts across several issues including law, generally steady territory to tramp about on.
However Joan McAlpine has blotted her copybook again after she was was banned from driving yesterday.
Her offence was speeding.
McAlpine has campaigned for 20mph limits to protect kids but she was clocked at 40mph in a 30mph zone.
If a kid had stepped out in front of her at that speed, her car would be ‘wall to wall’ blood with either the kid through the windscreen with its face ripped off, or under the wheels mangled or thrown through the air.
Salmond’s aide has already racked up nine penalty points in three years.
And this isn’t the first time that Ms. McAlpine has felt the ‘need for speed’, she has another speeding conviction on her licence.
Awhile ago, some halfwit up north called Mark McDonald was advocating punishing young drivers on the basis that because of their young age, restrictions where needed to combat bad driving incidents such as speeding.
The age limit was 17 to 25.
SNP MSP Joan McAlpine is 51.
In truth, McDonald’s idea was discriminatory in nature, and pretty much deals a death blow to transfer full DVLA functions to be under the control of the Scottish Parliament.
McAlpine has been disqualified for two months and fined £350.
Outside court, she said:
“If you break the speed limit you have to accept the consequences.”
As part of her defence to dodge a longer ban, her lawyer pointed out that the route looked like “a country road” despite signs, a speed camera, and road markings.
And two eyes in her head and a brain.
Her lawyer Elaine Rae told Dumbarton JPs’ court McAlpine took “full responsibility for her actions.”
Well, how big of her considering she was bang to rights.
JP Owen Sayers agreed to a plea to spare McAlpine more penalty points, she needs her car to travel to the area she represents since she won’t live there preferring to stay in Glasgow.
Sayers told McAlpine:
“If someone has nine points they need to be very careful. These cameras are well sign-posted on the roads.”
So, Ms. McAlpine lurches again to another embarrassment, last year McAlpine submitted a string of parliamentary questions about road safety.
One question asked if a review of speed limits had considered “the survival chances of a child who is hit by a vehicle travelling at 30mph compared to one travelling at 20mph”.
One also wonders if Joan McAlpine ever wonders about the survival chances of a child who is hit by a vehicle travelling at 40mph.
Maybe she should carry a medical kit if she intends to continue speeding on Scotland’s roads.
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University