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We know Iain Macdonald a little through his …

Comment posted Council Elections: The count by newsroom.

We know Iain Macdonald a little through his work with his Community Council.

He is one of the most independent spirits you could find – and in anything we have seen, is utterly transparent and unlikely to be moved from what he sees as the right action.

We don;t know him very well – but it’s one of those things we all know about – it’s impossible not to recognise ‘a right’un’ any more than it is not to know ‘a wrong ‘un’.

newsroom also commented

  • Sorry Paula. That is flatly incorrect and you cannot therefore have any evidence for it whatsoever.

    In our entire lifespan we have blocked fewer than 10 comments – and that’s allowing for memory loss. They have been blocked because they were fully actionable, scatological or smearing for political advantage.

    We have also banned one person permanently because he persisted in clear libel in what was clearly a personal obsession that had nothing to do with anyone else.

    We sin-binned another for a period for an instance of outrageously poisonous manipulation.

    If anything, we should arguably have blocked a lot more comments, not in our own interests – it is patently obvious that we let anyone say what they like about us – but to offer more protection to some individuals than we have done.

    We have perhaps been overly tolerant in such cases because we prefer contributors to self-edit in the interests of observing a basic standard of civility and we believe that most people will do so.

  • Thank you. It can, of course, be added at any time.
  • All that we can think of here is that any comment you are aware of as unpublished may have been written without the ‘Post comment’ button being properly activated.

    Two of us have been sharing the monitoring of comments over the life of this article and neither of us has blocked a single comment – something we have almost never had to do.

  • Simon – just lose the blinkers and read what’s being said. There was no suggestion that there is anything wrong with ‘urban based’ anythings.

    This was a serious response to your comment. It’s important to try the ‘what ifs?’ What if this is a serious matter and not a squib?

    If it wasn’t a serious point but merely another squib through our letter box, then there is no use trying to engage. Email your address and we’ll send you a box of Bengal matches to play with.

  • And we don’t bother so much here about the state Iraq has been left in by our illegal intervention.
    It’s a matter of scale, Simon but it’s the same thing.
    We have all to try to understand the condition of the other.
    If one is a townie or a teuchter – to use the pejoratives for both – one cannot ‘know’ what it is to be the other; but one can ask, discover and intuit.
    The problem with the school closures was driven, in part, by the phenomenon you identify: urban-based councillors adopting a position on rurality with no experience or understanding of rural communities, the way they work and they way they can fail.
    It was the complacent assumption that a position of ignorance was somehow a qualification for superior wisdom that was the can of petrol in this inflammation.
    In this case, as you rightly say, the people of Helensburgh didn’t and don’t think rural schools lke Luss and Kilcreggan matter much. Campbeltown cared as much for Southend; Oban for Barcaldine; Rothesay for North Bute; and Dunoon for Toward.
    Why should they. It’s not their experience.
    But that cannot be the basis for deciding, uninformed, on other people’s lives – or for ganging up on them.
    Yet each of these places unknown to townsfolk is a rich and individual culture, a living organism that keeps alive much of the country. If these places die, then alternative means and values for living die too.
    It’s not straightforward but it matters.

Recent comments by newsroom

  • Here’s how the ‘BT Broadband Security’ scam works – a victim’s narrative
    If only it were, Jake.
  • Supreme Court finds for appellants on Named Persons
    Not in my control and hadn’t noticed this myself [so thanks] – and will pass on your concerns.
    This us likely to be one of the consequences of recovery from recent outages which were beyond our control.
  • Supreme Court finds for appellants on Named Persons
    It is worth noting that in its judgment the Supreme Court said:
    ‘“The first thing that a totalitarian regime tries to do is to get to the children, to distance them from the subversive, varied influences of their families, and indoctrinate them in their rulers’ view of the world. Within limits, families must be left to bring up their children in their own way.’
  • Bute refugees suffer from inadequately considered placement
    Eveything you say above applies justly to those who radicalise – but not necessarily to those who are vulnerable to be radicalised.
    When you are young, everything in life is understood in simple binary oppositions. It is only time and broad experience that introduces and embeds the tonalities of understanding.
    Many of the young everywhere, from the need to belong and from the acceleration of peer pressure, are also prone to follow the accepted behavioural norms or fashions of their peers.
    This is why radicalisation is most easily effected in cities and amongst the large cultural enclaves that can form there.
    The young, in their uncluttered understanding, are also idealist – and extremism is a form of idealism perverted.
    What you say about the safety and security that relocated refugees now possess is also correct – but is amended by two considerations.
    One is the automatic perception of all refugees as having the education to hold such an understanding of their situation. Many will be educated – some very highly indeed – but by no means all will have had the opportunity of education.
    The second is that, as may be the case with some of the Bute families, if they feel and look ‘different’ from everyone around them and if they cannot communicate, some will feel uncomfortable and vulnerable, even intimidated – and it is unrealistic to assume that refugees will be universally made welcome in any locality.
    We had assumed that the acceptance of such refugees here would mean the automatic employment of those qualified to teach English as a foreign language and that such classes would be taught in a regular and compulsory schedule.
    This would be a responsible and necessary provision if integration is to be a realistic achievement.
    We do not know if such provision has been made and there seems to be no mention of it.
  • Turkey’s military coup raises issues to be confronted here in Britain
    This is another issue – a procedural one – and one which clearly needs to be resolved while the need can be immediately understood.

    It remains a mystery why, when political party leadership elections require set percentages well above 50% to secure a win, politicians would not have reason and wit to see that decisions taking a member of a significant political union out of that union, changing the nature of the larger union [helpless to prevent that] as well as the nature of the departing member, that decisions of such weight and permanence cannot sensibly be taken by 50% + 1 single vote of an electorate.
    The opportunity for due revision was not taken following the Scottish Referendum, which was run under this rule.
    Something like a 60% threshold would guard decisions against the percentage of transient whim – and/or of misunderstanding and/or of misinformedness – in any vote; and these are the things that that can help to create very narrow majorities on very profound issues.
    Opinion polls declare that their results are subject to a 3% margin for error.
    In the EU Referendum, a 2% change of mind would have produced an even tinier – but legally acceptable – majority in the opposite direction.

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