Sunday, 30 January 2011

Burns Supper Freudian slip

A few of us attended the Perth Burns Club annual dinner last night, at which Mike Russell MSP spoke to the Immortal Memory.

At the end of the evening a speaker gave 'thanks to Mike Russell, who WAS Cabinet Secretary for Education'. Not IS....!

Ask not for whom the bell tolls, Mike.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

A Perthshire sky

This great picture was taken by James Taylor from Alyth, one of our list candidates for the Scottish Parliament in Mid Scotland and Fife.

Nice one James. Well done.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Who won the Oldham by-election?

Who won the Oldham by-election....Labour or the government? 

Depends on how you look at things.

Confusing this politics is'nt it....?

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Loch Aberfeldy

The wet weather over two days on top of melting snow has been creating flooding, dangerous driving conditions and general misery on much of Tayside. It is not clear just yet whether property has been affected. It has been drier overnight and all today so far, and the waters are now going down, at least up here.

Big scary flood on the Tay

Wade's Bridge Standing Firm

Sunday, 9 January 2011

The Race for Holyrood

Another great political cartoon in Scotland on Sunday today. Tavish Scott is playing it cool....probably the best thing to do at present. Tavish has the energy to catch up quickly and get in among the front runners at the end, and who knows what the final outcome will be.

The rest are all clearly struggling.

In the front at present.....

This is a good political depiction. Labour are out in front, SNP behind and with internal tensions in their leadership.....neither of them really fit enough for the race ahead and likely to peak way before the finishing line.....allowing a chance for others to make an impact at the end.

I can remember the first time I seen Iain Gray. As the Finance Minister, he was standing outside Parliament in the rain having a fag, nodding "hello" to people as they passed. The impression was off a down-to-earth working man, and this clearly impresses people, although it does not come across in the Press.. The SNP will try to compare and contrast his personality with that of the First Minister. If it was just a choice between these two (which it is not), many Scots will plump for Iain Gray.

Oor Tavish......

Tavish Scott, as we all know, is a real action man and quite capable of getting in amongst the front runners when the time comes. While Labour and the SNP have been trading insults in recent months, Tavish HAS been quiet, but we know there is a lot of work being put in behind the scenes on jobs and the economy and these are the issues that will chime with voters. The Lib Dems will be considering carefully how best to deploy limited resources when the time comes.

Annabel Goldie will indeed be on a shuggly bike in the race, with her frustrations no doubt coming to the fore from time to time.

Friday, 7 January 2011

Reform of Libel laws in the UK

Liberal Democrats have a proud tradition of speaking out for liberty and freedom. One of the key ways in which the Liberal Democrat contribution to this government will be acknowledged is by its record on civil liberties.
So we should be judging ourselves, and we will rightly be judged by others, on what is done by ministers to make this country a place where our precious liberties are safeguarded.
Labour's record - always opposed by the Lib Dems - was very damaging. Not only to our rights and freedoms, but to our reputation in the world.
That's why civil liberty campaigners are taking a very close look at what the Coalition is doing. We have already seen many of our priorities delivered - the scrapping of ID cards, the end of child detention and the instigation of an enquiry into allegations of the UK's complicity in torture. But there are decades of restrictive legislation to repeal.
So I am sure that, like me, you were pleased to hear Nick Clegg, give a major speech today on civil liberties - not something that a Labour Prime Minister or Deputy Prime Minister ever did.
One liberty that underpins many other freedoms is free speech. It is under assault in this country.
Lib Dems have a proud record in defending free expression. Lib Dem Peer Lord Lester and I led the campaign to defeat Tony Blair over the religious hatred legislation, and we also prompted the abolition just three years ago of England's preposterous laws of sedition, criminal defamation and blasphemy.
Today Nick talked about the Government's plans for libel reform, yet another liberal campaign that our party has championed nationally. We were the first party to commit to new liberalising legislation - at our 2009 conference.
Shortly after I founded the Libel Reform Campaign, a year ago, I saw Nick address the country's top scientists at the Royal Society, who were concerned about the chilling of scientific debate by vested interests, and he made libel reform one of our manifesto commitments.
So, how welcome it was, today, to hear Nick, as Deputy Prime Minister, announce that there would be draft Libel Reform Bill in this session of Parliament and that it would include key liberalising ingredients. We are taking the opportunity to promote free expression and to end the ill-gotten reputation of Britain as the libel capital of the world.
Nick also clearly indicated that the government will end the ineffective and unjustified restrictions of the control orders regime and that the Freedom of Information laws - that New Labour never liked - would now be widened.
This country is starting to reclaim its liberties. And our party is the driving force for that.
Evan Harris

Vice Chair, Federal Policy Committee

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Thought for the Day

We all know that 2011 is going to provide us with many challenges, both in our everyday lives and also on a political level.

But are we optimistic or not?

Is doom and gloom contagious? While many politicians were yesterday going to town on how much the VAT rise would hurt the economy, many ordinary people seemed to have a more balanced view of things, and sounded as if they were prepared to put up with it and work around it as best they could.

Do we feel poorer or less secure simply because economists and media force feed us with negative materials, much of which is often contradictory and simply adds to the sense of confusion?

Have you got your sense of perspective of where things are at yet in 2011, or is your head spinning a bit?

We all know how easy it is to talk a market up or down if that is what suits people who stand to gain by prophecies coming true.

Lets all be positive for 2011, and endeavor to persevere, whatever the year ahead brings. We will develop a better sense of perspective in due course about how things are likely to work out.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Yesterday's man......

Another excellent cartoon from Scotland on Sunday today....bit of a theme developing here now. Wee Eck's tactics from the past are not going to help him (or us) going forwards now.

You can enlarge the image by clicking on it.

Blog Stats

Over the past 4-5 months, views of this blog have varied between 450 to over 1000 per month in October, with the highest daily views being 55.

Given that the blog has only started this year and we are still getting a feel how best to ultilize it, we can describe this as a solid start, and hope to build on this in 2011 with a good breadth of material on a regular basis, interspersed with photos from around Perth and Kinross. I am sure the Holyrood campaign will give us plenty encouragement, and this site will compliment our wider campaign.

If you have any views on this blog regarding the quality of material, overall tone or general usefulness, we would be very pleased to hear from you, either as a comment, or to the email address on the side panel to the right.

Victor Clements
Perth Liberal Democrats

Saturday, 1 January 2011

A New Year Message from Tavish Scott

I want so much better for Scotland in 2011 than we’ve had. And I don’t just mean the weather. People want a Scottish Government where we take the right, long-term decisions for the country, not for any political party. Take decisions that can build a stronger, better and more prosperous Scotland. So I want the New Year to start the process of building a better future for our country: to protect and create new jobs, to give real control to local people over the public services they depend on and to restore Scotland’s reputation for excellence in education.
As leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats I want to achieve more for our country. A Scotland that creates the most innovative and entrepreneurial economy in the world; where our children are among the best achieving in the world with kids from the most deprived backgrounds reaching double the current levels of attainment; and where we move towards a low-carbon, no-carbon country with Scotland being in the top 5 countries for energy efficiency.
Politicians can’t do this. People across Scotland can. People working in the private sector, voluntary bodies and communities of Scotland. Teachers in schools. Nurses in hospitals. Bus drivers getting us to work. It will be a Scotland where we co-operate, trust and respect each other’s contributions.
It will be a Scotland where hard work and innovation are rewarded, but one where Government will invest, educate and support to make sure it is fair.
That’s the Scotland I want to begin to build and 2011 is the year to begin.

Tavish Scott

Happy New Year to one and all

Enjoy the calm for a few days.....!!