Vote of confidence for Thursday council meeting

Following last night’s revelations here [below], Cowal Councillor Gordon Blair is said to be acting as the agent of local MSP, Michael Russell who, if this shambles had anything remotely strategic about it, could be described as ‘masterminding’ it.

As it is, Mr Russell is certainly ‘mastering’ it – but ‘minding’ seems to be a requirement too far for this monumental blunderbus.

Councillor Blair has allegedly been tasked with bringing down his own party’s council administration on Thursday, a matter he is said to be relaxed about since he is finding the responsibility of power too onerous and would prefer to be behind a pea shooter on the opposition benches.

He appears to have been offered protection from party disciplinary consequences for his coming actions at Thursday’s council meeting.

This appears to be a time of political dwarfs with out of scale egos.

There will be a vote of confidence in the current administration, which will be unlikely to carry.

This may well be the time when the coalition partners retire from a scene that has always been out of their control but in which they have worked loyally to be true to the commitment they initially gave.

What has been an utterly avoidable situation was externally manipulated and has been profoundly damaging to the Argyll few of the SNP group or the local SNP MSP put above their personal interests. And the national party has been AWOL, at best.

This is not about any failures by Councillor Roddy McCuish, the first leader to be felled by prolonged internal conflict and disruption; or by Councillor James Robb, the second leader since last May, who has been successfully scapegoated for trying to maintain some discipline in management decisions that were  – remember – taken by collective decision.

It is a failure of political courage and an absence of the discipline required by any party or group in charge of anything.

This is about a party political cadre utterly lacking in responsibility to the electorate and to the place  – and devoid, at all levels, of political intelligence, integrity and courage.

This has been a prolonged betrayal of those of us who voted for SNP candidates at the May 2012 local authority election. It is an example of how never to do politics. It will not be forgotten.

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14 Responses to Vote of confidence for Thursday council meeting

  1. You are so right, Newsroom.

    Is there any update on the ‘motion’ that was to be proposed by Labour and supported by Mackenzie MSP at Holyrood? We shouldn’t forget that he’s also interfering in Argyll’s political turmoil, which can’t be helpful either.

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  2. Councillor Blair has allegedly been tasked with bringing down his own party’s council administration on Thursday, a matter he is said to be relaxed about since he is finding the responsibility of power too onerous and would prefer to be behind a pea shooter on the opposition benches.
    What a disgrace– yes your comments.
    This from FA which in fairness will hardly upset folk as it is hardly a critique from The Times or Observer.
    Has Councillor McCuish or Robb been in touch with you? If you have done any research as opposed to being fed guff you should have known that Cllr Blair has regularly been meeting with Struan Lodge staff as has the other councillors to save the home and its residents. (represent the electorate)
    Is “For Argyll” stance that Struan should be closed down? If so is put up the argument with real auditable figures and not the made up council ones.
    Maybe you feel Dunoon is to far away for such support?.
    As for taking responsibility Cllr Blair has as been noted in many blogs (Not only FA) that Robb tried to entice him with promoted posts which he turned down. When that didn’t work Semple, McCuish and Robb -old political hacks –tried to bully him into backing down (despite the 3 to 1 odds at Lochgilphead (at a meeting arranged at short notice) he told them where to go.
    More importantly as I understand it he told him that he would not resign as an snp member as he was following snp policy not them. If they chose to discipline him that would be fine as they would have to attend any hearing leaving them open to being quizzed by SNP HQ officials and the truth would come out. They backed off.
    In practice the new councillor has shown backbone to the bully boy tactic’s of 3 individuals who will in time be shown as cowards. In any organisation poison can set in it and it is unfortunate that this particularly abscess of Robb McCuish and Semple was not lanced early enough. The electorate back Cllr’s Blair Breslin and Walsh.
    So For Argyll –decide do you support the closure of Struan Lodge (Yes or No?) Make a decision.

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  3. The “betrayal” you speak of was on the people of the South Kintyre ward who voted for the Conservative & UNIONIST candidate , only to find he disowned his party colleagues and went in to coalition to put the SNP in power in Argyll & Bute .

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  4. Actually it is almost incidental who is right here whether Newsie or H20.

    The real story is that locally the SNP are involved in a vicious and personal power struggle with each side briefing against members of their own party and leaking embarrassing emails.

    This is not a party – this is an undisciplined mob with over-inflated egos vying for position.


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    • Personally I am in the right. Newsie thought sooking up to McCuish an Robb would be of benefit to FA

      However I am sure FA would want to confirm if they want Struan Lodge to close and the residents thrown on the street. That’s the story

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      • For the record, there is no one [not even Jim Mather who really was pretty exemplary] and no body which we have not criticised, amongst them the two Councillors you name – on evidence – and hard, on issues where they were doing harm.
        It would be difficult to find anything less prone to ‘sooking up’ in any way than For Argyll.
        We take nothing from anyone. We pay for everything we do. We need nothing from anyone. We owe nothing to anyone. We want nothing from anyone. So we cannot be bought or influenced or frightened.
        You – and anyone or everyone, may disagree with us some or all of the time – but we are utterly independent.
        We go on the evidence, we tell it like it is – and we provide the evidence and the reasoning for what we say. That is, literally, the best we can do.

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      • A pretty weak red herring i would say asking for FA’s opinion on this matter, when the snp grouop are imploding. What a different scenario to the party who stood firmly on school closures and were praised to the hilt by newsroom for that. They rightly deserve ridicule by their amateur shenanigans of late.

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    • ‘Loathing’ is not in our make up and it is dishonourable to suggest that it is.
      Lack of respect, distrust, alarm, sometimes contempt [intellectual and too often on matters of integrity] however, are informing our perspective on our local MSP and have been doing so for some time, always as a result of primary evidence.
      Try those words. They are objectively correct but much less useful for your purpose.
      And simply saying that we ‘know nothing’ has been and is flatly contradicted by the facts.

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  5. Ask Cllr Blair – I believe he is out once again with a fiddlers group helping out the Christian Aid Erskine Bridge walk on Saturday. Practices what he preaches. Donations I am sure for the Cowal Fiddle Workshop would be welcomed to help the youth of the area.

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  6. Sadly with all the political bickering over Struan it must be very awkward for any of our councillors who have family in a council home or even a private home to be able to make a decision one way or the other because you are damned if you do and damned if you don,t.
    I would expect any councillor who finds themselve in that awkward position to declare it as it will surely come back and haunt them at a later date.
    Very sad affair but the SNP have themselves to blame.

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