MSP complains of ‘arrogance’ in Better Together campaign’s banner location in Dunoon?

[Updated below] Local MSP, Michael Russell – in a press release issued this morning, is calling for the CEO of Argyll and Bute Council to see to the he removal of a Better Together [pro UK] banner from ‘a prominent position at a roundabout opposite Dunoon’s Queen’s Hall’.

Horrified by the barefaced cheek of this, the famously modest and self-effacing MSP is exercised by a meticulous care for the proprieties.

Drawing attention to the apparent lack of official consent for the banner – tied to ‘Council owned property’, the MSP notes that: ‘There are rules about this kind of thing.’

Markedly pained by this breach of protocol, Mr Russell goes on: ‘The fact is that the No campaigners have to live by the same rules as everyone else, to do differently would be sheer arrogance on their part.’

Indeed it would. Mr Russell is a legendary upholder of the ‘one rule for all’ mantra and ‘arrogance’ is known to be completely foreign to his conduct.

He finishes by saying: ‘I may stand to be corrected but I can’t imagine that Argyll and Bute Council would have given prior written permission, if they had that would be a whole other debate.’

The fascinating, one might say ironic, aspect of this is that it has emerged that Mr Russell himself neglected to ask for permission or even to inform Argyll and Bute Council of his intent, when he went in to the ‘Council owned property’ of Struan Lodge care home in Dunoon on Monday morning, 25th November, in campaign mode.

He talked there with council staff – again without the prior permission whose lack in the matter of the banner so distresses him.

This is a rather more serious breach of protocol than tying a banner in a public place; and we understand that the MSP’s  ‘arrogance’?  – surely not  – has raised concern within the council. Internal complaints are said to be in offing.

It would seem that only some of us ‘have to live by the same rules as everyone else’.

Amusingly, the press release promises the attachment of a photograph of the offending banner – a less than politically astute move, had it, in fact, materialised.

Update 15.15: We have just heard from Mr Russell’s office that Counckil CEO, Sally Loudon, has just been in touch to say that she has ‘instructed roads staff to remove the banner’.

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35 Responses to MSP complains of ‘arrogance’ in Better Together campaign’s banner location in Dunoon?

  1. Better Together banner taken down by Council.
    Other bannners still in place.
    Excellent response time by the Council to remove the Better Together banner.
    Banner safely stored in Milton House Dunoon.
    Collected at 4.18pm.
    Hopefully when permission is requested to put up the Better Together Banner response from our Council will be as quick!

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    • So no more political posters on lamp-posts at election time, and any for Mick Russell and his cronies will (of course) be subject to the same rules? Yes?

      I’ll believe it when I don’t see it.

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      • What we need is an Argyll version of Mao’s Red Guard, to go around tearing down posters that aren’t agreeable to the government.
        PS I see there’s been a U-turn over flogging the Raasay shooting rights to a company in South Ayrshire (who’ll get compensation) – good to have a ‘listening government’.

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  2. I actually think Michael Russell’s behaviour is better than any banner for the YES campaign.
    Everything else in Argyll must be just hunky dorry when he’s worried about something so stupid.

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  3. Oh get a grip, there are rules for election posters which ALL candidates follow. If the banner had been legal Sally Loudon would not have had it removed. End of.

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    • He’s a slippery slimey Nat!!— is this the state of debate on ForArgyll –sad person

      C’mon Mr McKie put forward an appropriate argument rather than hit the gutter.

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  4. Glasgow city council banned the afixation of posters on all council assets because of a perception that one party could out poster the other.

    As a result of this no parties put any of the lamp post posters that folks had come love and admire at election time.

    But hey, this article just seems to be another ” Mikey story from his adoring FA managing editor”

    Trust he Bitter Thegither” mob get the bill for the cost of the council roads department having to remove the banner. What think you editor?

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  5. The regulations that you all quote about election posters apply during an election period only. Despite all appearances to the contrary, we are not in the midst of an election campaign.

    So a Better Together banner is, in law, no different to one advertising a coffee morning, or a swimming competition in the local pool.

    So, my challenge is: What are the rules across Argyll & Bute for the display of such banners? Road Traffic considerations may form some part of the overall framework. But the Better Together banner should be treated equally, in exactly the same way as would any other banner.

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  6. The real issue here is how bothered by the Better Together campaign Mike Russell and his cronies are.
    For one of them to contact him and then for them to complain to the CEO of the council is quite desperate.
    Yes there are rules for banners posters etc. But for Russell’s lot to complain they are actually taking the Mickey.
    In all the recent elections in Argyll and Bute they have been regularly guilty of breaking these rules by having posters on lamp-posts below the allowed height, having posters on road traffic posts which I believe is not allowed, removing and throwing away posters/banners belonging to other parties.

    Did the others complain? No – Why? Because it would have been petty.

    Step forward Mike Russell and co.

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  7. Right, so that would explain why many SNP posters were found in the lochan on coincidentally the night labour put theirs up in sandbank and the ones that disappeared from blairmore including the large one that’s nearly 10ft across? Must have been that pesky wind.

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  8. For Jamie….look on they have a pic of the banner (funnily enough which I understand was on the same press release). Or as Monty Python would say….it is an ex banner!

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  9. Don’t know if there’s any truth in it but just heard plans were already afoot to remove the banner even before it’s breeching of the rules had been highlighted by our Mike Russell. When churning out thousands of these banners the ‘No’ campaign realised their typo error remembering the old rule that i comes before e so the ‘Better’ in ‘Better together’ had to be changed.
    Not only will these banners have to be reprinted but the hundreds of thousands of flyers falsely promoting the UK’s AAA rating will require putting right.
    The simple solution is for this banner be placed above their ‘No’ premises in Dunoon just like the ‘Yes’ campaign’s in Argyll st.
    Like many things, this banner and the council railings will get on much Better Apart.

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  10. After collecting the Better Together banner last Thursday at 4.15pm I sent an e mail apologising for not following the correct procedure for putting a banner up either at the railings next to the Queens Hall or the traffic lights at the Dunoon Observer shop.
    The e mail included a request to the appropriate Council Officer to put up a banner for the week-end 8-10 March and for future Better Together campaigning week-ends about 5 to 6 weeks apart
    While Mike Russell MSP can, on behalf of his constituents, go straight to the CEO of the Council and get the Better Together banner removed within 6 hours, permission for the request to put the Better Together banner back up has not been decided/ given within 6 days!
    Will await a decision with patience.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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