:lol: …

Comment posted Russell letter to council CEO on ‘spying’ activities – call for independent investigation by Crazy She-Bat.


Crazy She-Bat also commented

  • Jake, a more fitting question is, does Alan Reid actually know this is going on?
  • Got to admit, I am missing my old sparring partner :(

Recent comments by Crazy She-Bat

  • Hilarious council insight in Argyllhire Advertiser
    Guys, if you want hilarious, take a look at the “Sculpture” on the side of the new Helensburgh Council Offices. I laughed so hard my significant other thought it was time to phone the ambulance again lol

    My daughter is convinced it is evil and I dare say glowing red eyes would make that work a treat.

  • Baillie on latest figures for Royal Alexandra Hospital A&E waiting times
    The blame of this could be laid at multiple doors for repeated failure to protect and indeed advance the NHS services in this area.

    Tell me this, is there some way to get the geographical data from these figures as to who attended the RAH from North of the water and South? Wonder how that would change those figures if the Vale of Leven had an A & E again?

  • Baillie on latest A&E stats from Royal Alexandra Hospital
    As a recent patient in most of the hospitals in the West of Scotland, I think I am quite qualified to answer this from the punters point of view.

    First of all, anything that supports bringing A&E back to the Vale of Leven MUST be supported, by everyone in the political spectrum. There is a stretch of A82 between Milton and Bowling that makes this necessary. Roadworks or an accident in this stretch of road makes the whole of Dumbarton choke up and the place comes to a standstill. Ambulances can’t get through, let alone anything else. If it were you, would you want your loved one stuck on the A82 in the back of an ambulance with beleaguered but thank goodness we have them, Paramedics doing everything they can with their limited equipment? I was such a loved one recently and I thank my lucky stars there was no such delay in getting me over the river, there’s more than a good chance I would not be here typing this today.

    Another issue with this stretch of road is for getting ambulances on the way back from RAH to attend more emergencies, if the A82 is blocked up the other way as it takes no time to back up to Erskine – even something as simple as sunshine does that easily as half of Glasgow heads up the West Coast.

    Review of hospital staff in the 4 hospitals I have been in over the last couple of months – Superb. Everything to be proud about in the NHS. Doing a difficult job whilst being overstretched in every imaginable way. Every ward is full to choking. Patients are being sent home as soon as humanly possible and the beds filled as soon as they’ve been cleaned.

    There are a number of causes:

    Patients are being sent from hospitals all over Scotland to receive specialist care which they can’t get in hospitals closer to home.

    Patients being held in hospital because care packages are not being put in place quickly enough by agencies like Social Work etc.

    A&E departments not being available in more local hospitals.

    This list goes on…

    However, the answer to alleviate the RAH’s particular problem, is to re-open A&E services at the hospitals that now feed it. Its quite simply an overload problem. Too much of the population have to report there.

    I mean no disrespect to the fabulous RAH – Alexandria Paramedics and the RAH saved my life, but this is a service quite clearly at breaking point.


  • Scotification pros and cons
    Quite frankly, I’d rather settle for the BBC being devolved completely.
  • Luss really does give a toss
    Raining pancakes in Luss tomorrow. I’m going out with a large net lol Good luck to all taking part.

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28 Responses to :lol: …

  1. Well Done Mike for such an immediate and welcome response. Roll on May when hopefully we can elect Councillors who have the intelligence and gumption to take on these out of control mandarins.

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  2. Well at least we can never complain that Argyll and Bute is a dull place to live!

    I very much look forward to the outcome of this call for an investigation into ABC’s “spying” activities. We might even get to hear who was behind “Simon”.

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  3. I have posted my own initial comment on the “Council now deploys online ‘Spy Accounts’ in covert surveillance of local critics”.

    The intervention of Michael Russell MSP is to be welcomed. I will be contacting Jackie Baillie MSP as the other Argyll & Bute MSP to seek her support for a full and transparent investigation into this serious matter.

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  4. What a crowd of vioers we have within Argyll & Bute Council. What on earth happened to the old principles of public service, decency, honesty, and above all…transparency.

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    • I guess you meant “vipers” – however, if we are being herpetological then I would suggest that Grass snakes would perhaps be more apt (and they do seem to have established themselves in Scotland).

      It may be that the whole thing turns out to have been merely an innocent but unfortunate nomenclature used by the hapless Ms Smith but I think ABC employees who were active in the schools campaign will be alarmed at the thought that their postings may have been recorded by the Council with the potential for them to be used against them at a later date. Hence the appropriateness of Grass snakes.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • That is a fair point Phill and we would do well to avoid following in the footsteps of the English FA for fear of losing our leader (wait a minute…) however if you read the Herald article (now online at http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/council-chief-goes-online-to-spy-on-critics.2012021377) it clearly states

      ‘One fellow communications professional at the event, who did not wish to be named, said: “Ms Smith gave a powerful presentation about the highs and lows of using social media, but there was a sense of shock in the room when she described how she set up fake accounts on Facebook and Twitter to spy on people and groups who oppose the council.’

      which, unless this unanmed professional made the whole thing up, is a pretty damning statement as it means Ms Smith actually described to an audience of people that she did it.

      However the the quote from , Gary McGrow, Scottish Health Services Researcher at Scottish Health Council, does suggest there are two ‘schools of thought’ about the motivation of Ms Smith in her behaviour and possibly what the accounts were used for.

      That, obviously, is what an investigation will focus on and we should be careful not to jump the gun regarding conclusions.

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    • Phill: Innocent until proven guilty I agree. However, regardless of the truth behind the outrageous possibility that the Council may have been covertly spying on opponents, the fact is that this is a PR disaster for ABC and it has been caused entirely by their head of communications – whose job is to ensure that the Council avoids PR disasters.

      So the outcome of this story will either be that officers will be found to have been acting illegally or that at least one of them is cack-handed.

      I had an operations manager working for me who had mistakenly ordered the wrong components which could not be returned. This cost the company about £6,000. As soon as he discovered the error he came to me and offered his resignation (despite having a wife and child at home with another one on the way).

      If this mess is down to Ms Smith being silly at a seminar then she should consider offering her resignation. The cardinal sin of a communications manager is to become the news story. If there really was spying going on then, regardless of who knew and who didn’t, then this is a resignation matter for the CEO.

      (and no, I didn’t accept the resignation of my Ops manager but it was noble for him to offer)

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  5. It is most unfortunate that the top beaurocrats within this Council appear to lose all sense of purpose as to their actual role of serving the people as soon as they assume any position of power or prominence . Their arrogance and conceited sense of self importance shines through the facade that they present to the public. To effectively spy on your own people and then pop off tae Glasgow to brag about it to your peers, simply underlines a stunning disregard for any sense of vulnerability. Does anyone ever get truly sacked for incompetence in A&BC I wonder?

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  6. Hi Mike, I thank you for your intervention in this unbelievable and treacherous situation. I do believe, however, as a victim of Jo Smith and Argyll & Bute Council, that she may not be the only person within the council involved in this story. Due to the pressure that Oban Fm put on me, I eventually quit my programme as I was not willing to go on and withhold the truth from the listeners. However I have in my possession an email from Oban FM to Jo Smith saying that it was their intention to remove me from air for good. This matter has resulted in outrage from listeners throughout the Oban area. I do believe that the original complaint to Oban FM came from the councillor involved in my accusations, I also believe that this complaint was not authorised by any committee within Argyll & Bute Council. My colleague, Neil MacIntyre, has asked on three occasions for a FOI regarding the name of the guilty councillor, this has been refused each time. I also know that Jo Smith used my name on slide No. 6 without my permission at her presentation. I look forward to the investigation that you are mounting. It is, in my opinion, every bit as dangerous a situation as phone tapping/hacking and that the legal authorities must become involved ASAP.

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  7. So George what you are saying is that you have quit Oban fm totally?
    Have you done this before?
    Will you ever be back? Your prog would have been good in the lead up to the elections.
    I am glad your good wife has not been affected by any of these allegations and continues her excellent Sunday scottish programme which is always delivered in an excellent laid back manner.

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  8. Only slightly off the thread, I wonder whether the evidence triggering the ongoing ‘spygate’ furore should be sufficient encouragement for Oban FM to see sense and apologise publicly and fully to George Berry – and to their audience, and hopefully to persuade George to give the local radio another go. I can’t see any councillor having the brass neck to raise it’s head above the parapet in the current circumstances.

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    • You cant turn back the clock. Time to broach new horizons for George who i feel would make a fine A and B councillor given his local charity/community background.

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  9. For Integrity.
    The reply we got from Ian Jackson the Governance Officer was that this would be (personal information) which is excempt from disclosure.So the councillor can hide behind section 38(1)(b)of FOISA.So that is the quality we have representing us and the officers play along.

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  10. Integrity,
    you’re kiddin’ yourself. I’ll bet, from what we now know, the Kilmory cat knows your e-mail address!
    The response by Mr Russell is all good and well, but telecommunications is a reserved matter, has there been a response from Alan Reid yet does anyone know?

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  11. CSB, there is no doubt that Alan Reid will know exactly what is going on. It may be that he prefers to keep a low profile on this issue given that his Lib Dem colleagues (Cllr Morton, Cllr Hay, Cllr Currie, Cllr Reay, Cllr Nisbet and Cllr Colville) are all at the heart of the ConDemAll administration.

    By keeping a low profile, it allows him to avoid condeming a practice that it is alleged took place on the watch of his own Leb Dem colleagues.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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