Thursday, January 29, 2009
While some are accusing the Lib Dems of playground behaviour*. While the Scotsman thinks it only took two men to bring down the Budget. The far more telling thing is the hissy fit being carried out by the Ego that is the First Minister.
Yet again the great Ego of Banff, Buchan & Gordon though lesserly of Westminster and formerly of this parish is threatening to take his ball away. All of this when the lesson learnt from the three parties who voted against his was that he wasn't doing enough. Admittedly there was not agreement on what the enough should entail. But this limp budget, on the same day that latest GDP figures were published showing that Scotland is accelerating into the recession quicker than the rest of the UK, just didn't cut the mustard.
Somebody pointed out that the Tories had got just exactly what they had been looking for last year, but the Nats were not much better. Despite the shift in the economic tectonic plates in the past twelve months this budget is barely changed from that which was laid out in 2007 in the Spending Review. While a week is often cited as being a long time in politics the last year has been one heck of a ride. Although it would appear to have passed unnoticed by John Swinney.
Instead of threatening to talk his ball away by resigning and calling an election the First Minister should learn the lesson. After all it was he who chose to go into a minority administration in the first place, therefore he really ahs to listen to more than just his own voice in order to get things done for Scotland. He doesn't have a mandate to steamroller all his ideas over the people of Scotland he merely (and only just) has a mandate to reside at Bute House and hold the office of First Minister of Scotland.
But with that comes the responsibility. The responsibility to listen to the people of Scotland not just to Alexander Elliot Anderson Salmond. The responsibility to do more to help them in reality rather that filter only the statistics, or adjust those that make you look good.
The people know the reality they are facing it, time for Salmond and his sheep to wake up and smell the coffee too.
*Nice quiet week for me to be editing the Scottish Round Up then.