Holy Jackie’s Prayer

Guilty! Thrice guilty! To the Tolbooth with them…let them dance to the hangman’s tune. How the mob love a lynching. There is part of us all which exults in punishment when it applies to someone else, as if their fate exonerates us. Holy Willie calls down the wrath of God on the Presbytery of Ayr but pleads remember me and mine wi’ mercies temporal and divine…

Burns came to mind when the sanctimonious Jackie Baillie hove into view on television to demand action against the evils of the SNP…pass not in Thy mercy by them, nor hear their pray’r, but for thy people’s sake destroy them, an’ dinna spare.

One of the SNP Presbytery was accused of grave misdeeds and at such times it is the moral duty of those with superior standards to judge them. Yet I am here a chosen sample, to show thy grace is great and ample; I’m here a pillar o’ Thy temple, strong as a rock, a guide, a buckler, and example, unto a’ Thy flock.

Ms Baillie, as Labour’s longtime Queen of Cant, has a blameless past. She couldn’t have been the one of Wendy Alexander’s shoulder when the election expenses scandal broke or the same woman on the board of Better Together which did such sterling work in reviving Labour fortunes…and she could never be accused of being soapy or sleekit. http://newsnet.scot/?p=109173

This of course is the case of Michelle Thomson who may become the first casualty of the SNP surge, guilty or not. In politics, it isn’t the facts that count but the perception which is why David Cameron’s youthful encounter with tete de cochon continues to resonate without a single open voice of confirmation or any graphic evidence. It isn’t even clear to me what precisely she may legally have done wrong but no matter – she has had the whip removed leaving her politically unprotected and therefore, by popular acclaim, guilty by implication. She has been the target of a group in the constituency which has waged a campaign to vilify her asking what her true business credentials are. A dirty business.

We can’t know where a police investigation will lead but the questions will surely include what knowledge she had, if any, of the activities of the solicitor now struck off. You can go to jail for mortgage fraud.

Even if no charge results, the voodoo of partisan politics means a toxic potion of guilt by association with dodgy lawyers and making a quick profit from other people’s wasting assets will be left bubbling on her MP’s desk. It happened before she was a politician! She wasn’t elected! So what? These games are played by different rules. In the housing business if you are desperate to offload and then undersell a property which subsequently resells for more, the answer is caveat emptor. Do the same thing in a party rosette and it is mens rea – you had guilty intent. It means there may already be no way of saving a nascent career. You can promise to press the nuclear button or do a dirty deal to get Saudi Arabia on to the UN human rights council as Britain did, but if it looks like you’re exploiting the voters for profit, you’re doomed. If she’s guilty, so be it. We look forward to Ms Baillie’s master class in hand-wringing.

This looks to me like a matter on a different scale completely to the ‘crimes’ of TinthePark. And yet here too the Holy Willie prosecution continues through sly implication. First it is cronyism which allows a former adviser ‘special access’ to ministers – no evidence. Then it’s the arrangement of a meeting – which she didn’t attend. Next she secures a grant – negotiated by the company boss in her absence. Lastly, the award was unjustified as the company made a profit – a new criterion for the award of public funds. The Reality – a dirty wee game to smear people by implication.

If there is some wrong-doing buried in here, it has yet to be unearthed, rather like Salmond’s dirty dealings with Donald Trump which revealed precisely nothing (apart from Annabel Goldie’s lightbulb expose that he travelled to a meeting in his ministerial car). But the Labour chairman of the inquiry still intoned gravely how the First Minster had to be more careful, watch his step etc, etc…imply, suggest, wink, wink.

Of course Jennifer Dempsie, the ex adviser, has now stepped down as a candidate and must therefore be silently conceding her guilt, according to the witchfinders. Or maybe she’s just sick of being attacked through innuendo and hung out to dry. Maybe another young female is now lost to public life through a low-level witchhunt. Who knows?

I wonder too how the TinthePark people feel about the clear suggestion behind this episode that they were complicit in corruption. After all, if she was their agent acting on their behalf and if she helped secure money to which they weren’t entitled, given as a favour to a political pal, well then, they’re guilty too, aren’t they? If it were me, I’d be tempted to pull out and take the event elsewhere. Why should a company allow itself to be the brunt of someone’s oafish campaign of denigration?

I’d be asking too when making a profit was a bar to securing public funding…organisations with money in the bank and companies in the black all qualify for support if they meet the criteria. They don’t have to show an empty account to get cash. Follow that logic and there would be no inward investment. Why would you back a business that was failing by inviting it to set up in Scotland? Look, we’re so unsuccessful, we’ve no money in the bank. Help us out, minister. The whole point is that it is successful companies making a profit and looking to expand whom you encourage to locate here with free factories, land, rates holidays and tax breaks.

But why bother with logic when you can chase someone out of public life, run down the reputation of a successful and revenue-creating project and smear your opponents?

Once guilt is confirmed, the culprits must suffer. That is part, not just of the judicial process but the democratic one. It’s what happened to Wendy Alexander, Mike Watson, Chris Huhne, Jim Devine, Jeffrey Archer, Jonathan Aitken, Denis McShane and Bill Walker.

But, please, spare us the sanctimony and hypocrisy.

I bless and praise Thy matchless might,

When thousands Thou hast left in night,

That I am here afore Thy sight,

For gifts an’ grace

A burning and a shining light

To a’ this place.



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23 thoughts on “Holy Jackie’s Prayer

  1. At the risk of sounding patronising, thank God for you Derek.
    Thanks for confirming that I wasn’t alone in feeling a little bit queasy at the speed at which people, who I thought better of, rushed to put distance between themselves and the victim.
    People like Baillie are so reminiscent of the Witchfinder General.
    Why let nasty things like decency and integrity get in the way of pure politics.
    Can I advise everyone to read
    ‘Psychopathic Cultures and Toxic Empires’ by Will Black, a mental health professionalturned journalist..
    It will chill you to the marrow and at the same time explain so much

  2. Never mind – it’s fair game to find someone guilty until proven innocent according to (Not) Labour in Scotland.

    Even today Ms Dugdale was at it – confirming her own presumption of Ms Thomson’s guilt before the results of any investigation or inquiry by Police Scotland are available by saying, effectively, it doesn’t matter what the Police decide as whatever happened it was immoral.

    This from someone who has a leading role in a party which has just elevated a convicted arsonist to the shadow cabinet at Westminster:

    “On 22 September 2005, Lord Watson was sentenced to 16 months’ imprisonment.[8] Sheriff Kathrine Mackie justified the sentence, stating that there was both “a significant risk of re-offending” and that Lord Watson offered no explanation”

    What’s your morality meter reading on that one Ms Dugdale?

    • I thought the Dug was in charge of the “autonomous” Scottish Labour party?
      Why is she concerning herself with the conduct of a member of another parliament?
      Surely a matter for her new boss since it is his domain.

  3. Yeah. Just look at Labour”s criminal record in office.

  4. David Chaytor, Lab – jailed; Jim Devine, Lab – jailed; Elliot Morley, Lab – jailed; Eric Illsley, lab – jailed; Margaret Moran, Lab – supervision; Lord Taylor of Warwick, Con – jailed and still sits in HoL; Lord Hanningfield, Con – jailed and now accused again; Chris Huhne, LibDem – jailed; Lord Archer, Con – jailed; Jonathan Aitken, Con – jailed.

    Sorry if I missed you out.

    Then there’s the list of MP’s and Lords with connections to Private Healthcare firms and who are allowed to vote on the legislation – too long at over 100 to give here, but stuffed full of Lab/Con/Libdem troughers. Perhaps a an issue for FMQ’s?

    • How could you forget Lord Watson of Zippo?

      He is now in the Shadow Cabinet as he done his time and is reformed but sadly still unelected.

  5. In politics, it isn’t the facts that count but the perception which is why David Cameron’s youthful encounter with tete de cochon continues to resonate without a single open voice of confirmation , OR ANY GRAPHIC EVIDENCE.
    Haven’t you seen THE picture, Derek. It’s pretty damning. A naked Cameron nervous before the pig’s head.

  6. @manandboy Nah. The real picture hasn’t yet emerged. The one doing the rounds is a mock-up of Cameron’s head flipped to the right and stuck on someone else’s body, and the rest of the pic is from a photo of Czech (I think) students at a ball in the 1970s. An eerie one, though. If a picture actually exists it’s probably being held by someone as a bargaining tool or will be released at a suitably embarrassing time for Cameron.

    As for Michelle Thomson, we have far fewer facts about the mortgage stuff than we do about the Carmichael case, and Carmichael is clinging on like a limpet, refusing to let go. Compare and contrast with Michelle, who immediately stepped down and made herself available to the police to help their inquiries, despite it being variously reported that she’s been fired, forced out, or sacked from the SNP. Par for the course, where the Scottish unionist media are concerned.

    Can you imagine the work going in to try and uncover anything at all about any of the SNP MPs or MSPs. Backbreaking. Maybe that’s why there was so much barking from Ruthie and Kezzie at FMQs. They’d finally dug up something that might be a bone, and could barely contain their excitement under the concerned faces and sanctimonious mien. So excited were they to tell everyone about this alleged bone, they wanted to play all day.

  7. It’s very important that Michelle stays on if she is not guilty. The smearing will move to the next victim if the opposition think it was successful. Her leaving or being sacked is a sign of weakness.

    If she has made big profits in a previous life. Does that mean she is a bad person. What is a bad person? Alistair Darling making £200k for public speaking while working for better together and telling the poor to pay for his party’s mistakes. To me that’s wrong. But the establishment think it’s fine.

  8. Steve Asaneilean

    I think the First Minister should have been more aggressive with Ms Dugdale yesterday. Firstly she have pointed out that she wouldn’t take any lectures on morality from the branch office manager of a party who went into an illegal war on false pretences; a party who bailed out the banks for the financial mess that same party had allowed to happen in the first place; a party that left office in Westminster with the gap between rich and poor wider than it had ever been since the 1930s.

    Then she should have said that if Ms Thomson was found guilty of any wrong doing or anything illegal then she would be the first to condemn it and she would expect Ms Thomson to step down as an MP.

    If, however, the Police find no such evidence she would expect Ms Dugdale to return to the Scottish Parliament and formally apologise.

    • Correct.
      I am becoming more and more uneasy at the apparent ease with which has adapted to the Wesrminster Way.
      1. The treatment of Craig Murray for rhe audacity to put principles over party line
      2. The ‘kow towing’ to the Daily Smear or waa it the Sneer – at least Corbyn is resilute in blanking that outlet.
      3. The unseemly speed with which Michelle has been hung out to dry.

  9. Yep Nicola needs to nip this stuff in the bud.

    Sometimes you have to play dirty to shut them up. Don’t pander to a bully , rough them up and make them squirm.

  10. As I understand it, the lady herself chose to resign the whip, after which the expulsion is automatic.
    Perhaps you could check up on that?

    Yes she might have been asked to do so during investigations, but I think that would be normal procedure for political parties.

    By the way, does resigning the whip mean you are not allowed to speak or be spoken to by your former comrades?

  11. We’re all safe in the sure and certain knowledge that if and or when Ms Thomson is cleared of any wrong doings that the Faux outraged will immediately proffer they’re complete and fulsome apologies on bended knee for ever having doubted her character

    Although it will probably sound more like there’s no smoke without fire but we’ll say no more until we can find…… more

    Maybe our stalwart BBC will set the tone and go first (Guardians of truth and justice that they are)

  12. BJSALBA – Yes she resigned the Whip herself. She wanted her name cleared before continuing. an honourable thing to do unlike Carmichael. Who lied, lied about lying, got caught and then refused to resign.

    She is innocent at the moment and has resigned the whip. He is guilty , admitted guilt but clings on to see if the court let him off on a technicality.


  13. The comparison of Michelle Thomson and Carmichael is so apt.

    Someone/group is out to get her. Few weeks back something about a dating blog?

    Rev Stu @ Wings, as ever on the button – why pay more than the asking price?

    The market, so beloved of the UK political body now wants to introduce charitable bidding, valuation price rather than “market forces”?

  14. Well, well, who would have ever thought this would happen to the sanctimonious, smug, holier than thou SNP?

    It’s a long fall down to earth, from those chilly heights of moral rectitude that the Nationalists occupied until recently..

    Now the merciless pursuit of Alistair Carmichael, has now come back to haunt the SNP re Michelle Thomson and Fiona Hyslop.

    As those that live by the sword…

    Die by it too….

    • Sad little labour quisling. You seem to have lost your way from the neo-nazi pro-union (or was is a pro nazi union neo-pro?) rally. Auschwitz is that way ————–>

      • Bless Peter, has matron left you unsupervised again? You know you are not allowed to play with the computer without supervision…

    • Don’t let the facts get in the way of a good smear.

      Another example on Wings right now about Police Scotland where officers saying they are thinking of leaving are citing the changes to pensions – a fact ignored by most msn because the Treasury made it impossible for the SG to go ahead with their good offer.

  15. Nicolia missed a golden opportunity at First minister Questions to mention the absolute brass neck of Ruth Davidson who had just been laughingly cleared of Wrong doing at Indyref by accessing postal vote Darling on the week of the indyref gave a speech in Edinburgh at a bankers do something he was paid a large fare for yet still claimed parliamentary expenses for flights
    Now remember his house is worth millions as is the property portfolio of Murphy both obtained by flipping
    What crime has Thomson committed
    Did she force people to sign
    A absolute disgrace the press treatment she is getting

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