Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson says that the Scottish Conservatives are the party of 'everyday grafters', her attempt to re-invent them as all ‘working class’ in her keynote speech is utterly bizarre, can she explain why there is not one single ordinary working class Tory MSP in Holyrood?

Dear All

Today is the budget, many people will comment on the ‘winners and losers’ but in brief, the SNP response is this isn’t a budget that helps Scotland.

The trouble with a broken record is that it just puts people off.

Winners and losers!

In Scotland for the last 30 years, the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party have been losers.

Rather big losers.

In Glasgow, the Tories have No MPs, No FPTP MSPs, one list MSP and one Councillor.

Given that the Tories haven’t really changed, it is possible they will spend another 30 years in the wilderness.

Ruth Davidson says that Scotland’s working classes should consider voting Conservative because they share the same values.

Is fucking over the poor a Scottish value?

Or is Ruth Davidson so politically unaware that she doesn’t consider that relevant?

Did she stand up for Scottish people affect by the 'bedroom tax'?


Quite the opposite!

How does she expect then to get Scots to vote for her?

Her ‘values’ aren’t the values of working class Scots. 

Ruth Davidson is now arguing her party is on the side of “the everyday grafters of Scotland” and she hopes that this attempt will reinvigorate her party’s fortunes.

Scottish Conservatives have every little appeal and traction.

It is because the brand is toxic, history, policies and people.

How she thinks she can extend their appeal without fixing that is truly bizarre.

Her party’s lack of recent electoral success north of the Border isn’t just down to her but goes way back into history.

She says the Tories “stand four-square with the people of Scotland” on a series of key issues from the Union to welfare and immigration.

Let’s leave out the ‘Union’, although fighting to keep Scotland in the UK, this is a fight between Labour and the SNP.

Also let’s leave out immigration, and just look at welfare.

The Conservatives have deliberately painted people on welfare as scroungers, this why benefit fraud and benefit error ares lumped together, add up the bill looks massive, so appealing to people's greed and playing off one set of people against another isn’t ‘four square’ as far as I am concerned.

The Scottish Conservatives need to outsource their social policies to someone who understands the problems of the poor, disadvantage and vulnerable.  Because they certainly don’t, the ATOS scandal is a prime example of less than caring Conservativism.

Ms Davidson, who is a lesbian, to show a lighter side during her speech joked that “it’s hard to come out … as a Conservative.”

As her party continues to decline and with an aging membership, it will get harder.

So, will her appeal to voters to re-examine how closely their values align with her party’s work?


In fact, it will be dismissed out of hand.

The Conservatives had a working class vote in Scotland in the 1950s but they completely ruined that with measures such as the Poll Tax.

The Thatcher legacy in Scotland is something the Tories are still proud of, they have haven’t apologised because they don’t see any reason why they should.

There is one Tory MP in Scotland, David Mundell.

There are 59 MPs in Scotland.

Even in the wealthy areas such as Bearsden and Newton Mearns, which is prime conservative stomping ground, you would think, they would stand a chance, but no, even in the affluent areas, people will not return a Tory in Scotland for the most part.

Davidson has pledged to reverse that downward spiral.

How does she plan to do that, despite being in office, not much has changed, the Tories fortunes haven’t improved.

She argues that her party was on the side of a “strong and growing working class”.

Well, let’s look at that statement.

How many Tory MSPs currently sitting in Holyrood come from a no rich or university background?

Can she name a single one?

Well, let me help her, there isn’t one single ordinary working class Tory MSP in Scotland, most of them are university graduates with an disproportionate number being lawyers.

How can a party which claims to represent the working class and as she says is made up of “the everyday grafters of Scotland”, not have a single working class MSP?

To appear ‘working class’, she has decided to re-invent what working class is, she defines it as :

“And when I say a working class, I mean anyone who gets up, goes to a job and earns a wage to support themselves and their families – the everyday grafters of Scotland.”

That won’t be catching on anytime soon.

Davidson added:

“Those hard-working people who deserve a Scottish government that values them and their efforts, who deserve a government that believes in letting them keep as much as possible of what they have earned.”

She has made these types of keynote speeches have been made before and afterwards there has been no impact, statements are made and are instantly forgotten, as just noise.

Davidson also rejected claims the Tories are irrelevant in modern Scotland.

People supporting staying in the Union doesn’t translate to support for Tories, as I wrote earlier, the fight is between Labour and the SNP.

Also because Scots approve of the Conservative policy on low taxes, cutting immigration and an EU referendum that doesn’t mean they want them either as the recent by-elections show, no real improvement, no game changers produced.

The Scottish Tory leader said her party’s share of the vote has increased in 11 consecutive council and parliamentary by-elections.

I stood in the Govan by-election; I got around 100 votes all by myself with no help, money and resources.

The Scottish Conservatives, a major political party, got just over 200 votes.

And their candidate had a double digit campaign team helping him out. I recall seeing one picture with about 10 people in it at a pub.  

Addressing voters directly, she said “you’re a Conservative” if they believed in sound finances and personal freedom, choice and responsibility.

You could argue that this is the principles that every party says they believe in.

Davidson also said her party wanted to end the “monopoly of mediocrity” trapping too many youngsters from poor backgrounds into “lives of low expectations”.

Not a single ordinary working class as a Tory MSP, if she can’t fix that in her own party, how can anyone expect she will change ‘Discrimination Scotland’.

And to highlight that she and presumably her party ‘don’t still get it’, she controversially announced plans to reintroduce prescription charges.

Vote loser!

The only comic piece to take from her set piece is when she highlighted Salmond’s refusal to accept the Chancellor’s rejection of a currency union with an independent Scotland.

She said:

“The last few months have taught us that Alex Salmond is utterly incapable of accepting the consequences of his own actions. If he was caught spraying graffiti, he’d blame the wall.”

Who will Ruth Davidson blame as the Tories continue to stagnate?

Can’t blame the wall surely!

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University


Anonymous said...

great article George, one thing about you is that don't spend time flowering stuff up, straight to the point, straight to the problem. This is one of the best politics sites that I read online, FYI.

You're right said...

well spotted that man

Tory Free Scotland said...

Tories are going nowhere, her speech is a turning point and certainly their involvement in indy campaign will not produce fruit.