Protesting farmers at Holyrood today should keep George W Bush’s comment in mind

Scottish farmers made a strong protest at Holyrood today, 10th March – and it was good to see them spot the difference between a genuine gesture from the Scottish Government and the utter sham that is the proffered address to the crisis of EU farm subsidies already unpaid by three months.

Billed by the eyes-wide-open First Minister as a move to ‘speed up’ these belated payments, the reality is that the Scottish Government’s offer will not see it divvy up one single penny until later than they had already promised all payments would be made – by the end of March.

The First Minister’s trumpeted prompt assistance to stretched and stressed farmers boiled down to the Scottish Government waiting until April to see how many farmers had not been paid by the end of March after all – at which point only they would pay those remaining farmers a proportion of their overdue subsidy out of the £200 Million of public money they have set aside for this purpose. This  amount – two thirds of the remaining £300 Millin due, is enough to suggest that they expect little to be paid between now and the end of mach.

But they’re still not going to pay a penny until April.

All that this ‘offer’ protects farmers from is a prolonged shambles at the criminally useless £200 Million IT project long predicted to cause just this sort of chaos. Delaying dipping into their own funds until April indicates that the Scottish Government expects this disaster to run on.

At the protest today, the beleaguered Rural Affairs Secretary, Richard Lochhead babbled: ‘We’ll fix the payments, It will all get sorted out’. Aye right? But when? Next year’s farm subsidy applications are due in the near future, making 2017 already look like a second silly season.

Finance Secretary, John Swinney, briefly addressed the protesters, assuring them that: ‘Your voice has been heard’.

This is where George W Bush comes into it.

With his characteristic lack of mask, he once said to someone with whom he disagreed: ‘I hear you – but I’m not listening.’

If Nicola Sturgeon and John Swinney had been listening to the plight and anger of the farmers, they would have paid them upfront months ago.

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Related Articles & Comments

  • Goud,a articil about grunts. I nead money know. Hoo do I go too to git grunt.
    My pal in France he git €55000 fir making chees .I got no and I hav 17 sheeppe.
    I allso ahe 2 hectares and big hefty Scots las up duf.
    I won’t my grunt
    Help,Sacha.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 11

    Sasha Distillery March 10, 2016 8:20 pm Reply
  • Hoo do I speek to git grunt?
    Mye pal in France he git €€55000 fir chees. I got 17 sheeppe and nead money fir big fat las in Mye home up duf.
    Contict Sacha in Mull.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 9

    Sacha Distillery March 10, 2016 8:24 pm Reply
  • You apply to the SG for emergency relief.In you case that might mean tablets!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

    R.B stoker March 10, 2016 8:29 pm Reply
    • Why I speak like him now?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

      R.B stoker March 10, 2016 8:30 pm Reply
    • I thought the three of you were disappearing for a week.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

      John M March 10, 2016 9:23 pm Reply
  • SNP are bad,I tell you.bad bad bad.good for nothing bad.Torys good,Libby’s good,Scottish labour blairy good.Nippy bad bad bad.Jackie good good good.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 10

    Jackie Bayleaf March 10, 2016 8:42 pm Reply
  • You right Sacha. Election coming up and all say the SNP very bad. England type say the want to keep us but we cista big money. Only Englenderish generosity keep us good. Poor farmer only get average £34k subsidy which no good. Will not even buy half Range Rover Baad SNP, not pay.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14

    willie March 10, 2016 9:15 pm Reply
    • William,you can mock England all you like.Without Westminsters generosity,Scotland would cease to exist.
      You mention Range Rovers,I prefer Jaguars myself.Just bought one,lovely.
      Still got money left for cattle feed.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

      R.B Stoker March 10, 2016 10:14 pm Reply

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