18 months of effort and personal loss just …

Comment posted SNP’s Coalition for Progress now has a majority – 19 councillors by Integrity? Not in the Condemall.

18 months of effort and personal loss just became worthwhile. My kids have a better future and I look forward to them enjoying it.

Recent comments by Integrity? Not in the Condemall

  • Darling launching pro-union Tourism Together on Loch Lomond this morning
    In that ‘never trust a commie’ statement, for me, you have presented yourself as the No campaigns equivalent to No Cheese Here for the Yes campaign.
  • Darling launching pro-union Tourism Together on Loch Lomond this morning
    To be honest a No voter should be keen to encourage NCH to post as much as possible. There must by Yes campaigners who cringe at his ignorance and belligerent manner. Don’t knows will be swung by idiotic and aggressive posts.
  • Jamie Grigor gets answers on current cost of Argyll Ferries passenger ferry contract

    Back at my PC now so easier to respond. I accept entirely that there are plus sides to the right to buy scheme. The massive discounts do let people get on the property ladder who would otherwise have struggled to and this provides a degree of security and an asset to act as a safety net if things go bad, or can be handed down to younger family members later in life to help them get a foot up in life.

    It certainly does provide greater independence in terms of life choices and I also accept the point about ownership often resulting in there being more pride and, consequently care of the home and surrounding area.

    So I do recognise there are positives – to be honest there are not many policies where there are not ‘for’ and ‘against’ arguments. I suppose everyone has to make an opinion on which outweighs the other.

    For me, right to buy is more negative than positive.

    It has created a massive hole in social housing. That is not entirely due to right to buy as successive governments have failed to build sufficiently however right to but contributed to it massively. In particular Thatcher’s policy to prevent councils reinvesting the receipts from right to buy into building new homes. The combination of these failings is now very apparent in the housing crisis and astronomical numbers of people in temporary housing. Rural communities in particular are hit hard due to reluctance of councils to build in rural areas. There are many instances of rural areas losing all their social housing through right to buy and now having no affordable homes whatsoever. The knock on effect of this is falling school rolls, diminishing facilities for young families etc etc – the potential endgame being the very sustainability of the area.

    There is also the very principle of social housing (which is what I touched on in my original post). The intention of social housing was to use public money to benefit the entire country, not to financially benefit individuals. I appreciate not everyone used right to buy to benefit financially (either through corrupt practices or entirely legal ones such as selling on for big profit or through renting them at market rates whilst having well below ‘market’ mortgages. This was an inevitable consequence of the policy which anyone could see coming. The public purse, in these cases, was being dipped into to return private profit.

    On the matter of ‘corruption’ it is certainly true that it wasn’t just people getting on the property ladder and enhancing their security and self-esteem. It was plagued with corruption and abuse by both individuals and companies who managed a plethora of former council houses. However I accept that shouldn’t be used to criticise people who did it in good faith.

    A further consequence is that the council stock which isn’t bought privately tends to be the worst of the stock. This means people moving into social housing thorough necessity are probably stigmatised more now than they ever were before. The result being quite the opposite of enhanced self-esteem.

    As I have said before I should say that I have no problem with people who took advantage of the right to buy – if an opportunity like that is provided by the Government it would be insane not took take advantage. My ‘beef’ is that the opportunity should never have been provided in the first place.

    Also as I have said before a staggering statistic is that the average discount awarded on right to buy properties is 47% (give or take a few decimal places) and as at the end of 2011 £45.5 billion of capital receipts for the Right-to-Buy scheme had been taken in. That means the value of assets given away by the public purse was (as at end of 2011) a staggering £40.4 billion! I just don’t believe for a second it, as a policy, has delivered either value for money or sufficiently enhanced quality of life for the country as a whole.

    Just my two cents (plus change!!)

  • Darling launching pro-union Tourism Together on Loch Lomond this morning
    One off polls are always marginally interesting in terms of sparking a bit of feel good factor for one camp or another however it is always a little pointless picking one poll and getting excited about it whilst ignoring a different one which tells a slightly different story.

    The BBC website’s poll tracker is a useful tool to get an idea of the movement over a 6 month period, across six different survey companies (Panelbase, YouGov, Survation, TNS BMRB, Ipsos Mori and ICM). I will grant you there are more poll providers than these six. It is the overall trend over the extended period which people should take more notice of.


    It would be useful if the BBC combined all the results into one graph rather than just showing the individual ones however it isn’t too difficult to get a feel from quickly reviewing the six.

    Ignoring the Don’t Knows.’ Over the past six months two of the six show a small reduction for the NO vote and Survation showing a big reduction of 6%. The other three show a small increase for the NO vote. Meanwhile bar ICM they all show a gradual increase for the YES vote (Survation again the outlier as it shows a 9% increase).

    A slightly quick and dirty averaging of all six shows very marginal movement over 6 months. No down 1% and YES up 3%.

    The biggest variation across the pollers seems to be the number of ‘Don’t Knows’ ICM and TNS sometimes have it as high as 28% however the other four tend to have it fairly consistently in the 11-15% range.

  • Darling launching pro-union Tourism Together on Loch Lomond this morning
    I have to say that as an English person living in Scotland I don’t find the Snp or Yes campaign to be anti English. Sure there are some members and supporters who are but no more or less of a bigoted minority than you get in the vast majority of societies.

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39 Responses to 18 months of effort and personal loss just …

  1. A new dawn – I just hope that the SNP group don’t ever forget that once upon a time they were in bed with Walsh & co, and resist any future temptations to make inappropriate pacts with unsuitable partners – or their past will come back to haunt them.

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    • The example of the Alliance should never be forgotten in terms of a descent into ‘anything goes’ that should never be replicated.
      The best guarantee is Roddy McCuish’s nature which has been steadfastly honest. The challenge for him will be to hang on to that in the face of anything – and that is bound at some point to bring its difficulties.
      We have all seen politicians who have become little more than holograms after selling off any semblance of integrity. It is hard – now – to imagine the straightforward Roddy McCuish committing or permitting any departure in that direction.
      We will be as much on watch with this administration as with any other. And, as we have said, the presence of the Argyll First group is both reassurance and canary.
      It is not the number of bodies in the coalition that matters, it is the substance of those bodies.

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  2. Crazy; Hope you’ve got your tin hat on for when the surfers and trolls start throwing their toys out of their cots!!
    Voters in Dunoon have a clear choice now, conflict or Coalition for Progress.

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  3. No fair!!
    There goes my hope of a SUPER School based in H’burgh which can accomodate 199000 children from sunday evening to friday afternoon.
    Mortons? are you reading this??

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  4. Hooray for the coalition and the honest-as-the-day-is-long postie McCuish. Looking round the virtual room containing them all I see so many people I trust. I can’t remember when we last had a council ruling group I could say that about! Now I am going to burn their ears off about protecting our amazing heritage and celebrating our astounding culture. Who will they get to lead that particular charge?

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    • you will not be alone Catherine… there was plenty of support for what we have in the landscape around us this weekend by the Scottish Place Names Society conference.
      Some of us may only be small voices but together we have the most vital message to shout about.

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  5. To quote Private Fraser,”We’re doomed”.

    I predict that turnout in Cowal will be very low. The exercise will be largely pointless.

    It certainly raises the question of whether in the case of the death of a candidate the whole council election should be postponed and not just the ward.

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  6. OK, wishlist time! Who do we want in the leadership roles?

    I think George Freeman should definitely get some kind of leaders post back for all that he lost and gave up.

    We need able people to deal with the Officers who unexplicably think they are in charge – hahaha – to be a fly on the Kilmory walls this morning!

    Answers on a postcard

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  7. Friday evening I was feeling a bit deflated with the results. Come Monday and I am euphoric. Same results but a different outcome. I am so glad that Cllr Elaine Robertson has joined the Coalition (the good one that is!). She is held in great respect in North Argyll but her membership of the Alliance was straining relationships. Early signs that Roddy is going to make an excellent leader of the Council.

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  8. What a breath of fresh air we now have to get the good guys back in Cowal on Thursday and really give Dick Welsh the message closed door nepotism in our council is finished

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  9. Great news. Hope they put James Robb in charge of the Helensburgh and Lomond Area Committee.

    Small point: Rosneath’s Robert McIntyre is not new to local politics. He represented Rosneath and Clynder on a previous local authority.

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  10. Good morning folks how about some predictions.
    Dick Walsh will pull out of the election on Thursday as he would rather do the garden now.
    Duncan MacIntyre will retire and buy a boat to tour the west coast looking for potential pontoon sites.
    By election in the North and with the backing of Lowry and JayC, Donald Melville will sail in with the help of his new kayak.
    Or will Easdale go for Independence and elect Duncan as El Presidentee? Who said life in Argyll was quiet, all we need now is Trump moving to Tiree to build a new golf course and Murdock to buy the Oban Times and we have the lot.
    Power to the People.

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    • Awww thanks for thinking of me but alas I’m in the wrong ward for my vote to count. Power to the people, well 93% of them anyway! Have a nice day.

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  11. I would not be so hasty. Mr Walsh has, in the past, shown himself to be a very shrewd operator. And it is not unheard of for people who did think they would go with one grouping to then change their minds.

    So while this McCuish coalition looks *probable*, I would wait until after the Dunoon count before cracking open the bubbly.

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  12. For Neil MacIntyre and Mairi, there are some members of the Alliance who are “person non grata” and who would not be welcomed into the new coalition. Prior to Friday there were six. That has now reduced to four. It does not take a genious to work out who they are.

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  13. Hi DB, your “drunken lecture” and the advice from other community contacts on Friday and Saturday would have helped. I did spend some time on the phone late on Saturday night and standing on Peaton Hill on Sunday morning explaining the various options to Robert. I have no doubt that along with me, he has taken the best decision as far as his constituents are concerned. After all, it is our communities and our constituents who are the most important people.

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  14. Well, well – it looks like a new administration in Kilmory. The best of luck to them – given the challenges the area faces – they’ll certainly need it.

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  15. I hope the new coalition brings the new approach that Kilmory needs and the correct persons are given the jobs that will turn round Argyll and Bute and help people who elected this new grouping

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