(c) Russel Gunson
In a piece by Tom Gordon, Scottish Political Editor, headlined ‘SNP income tax hikes only delay “deep cuts” for a year’, we read:
‘The income tax hikes in the SNP’s Budget have merely deferred “deep public spending cuts” for a year, and more tax rises may yet be needed, a leading think tank has warned. The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) said the £164m of extra income tax due to be raised in 2018/19 was not enough to avoid even tougher decisions in 12 months’ time.’
Of course, there was no praise for the Scottish Government’s efforts, once more, to make this a better country or any sign that Tom had read AL Kennedy’s fine piece of writing in the National, describing the alternative scenario in England:
‘England has swallowed the agenda of tax cuts and austerity and the comfort of the one per cent much more wholeheartedly. The poor are crushed more easily and blamed more loudly, racism is more easily enabled and the ‘comfortable’ classes pay more for everything – schooling, healthcare, transport, utilities, you name it. And, of course, the cliff-edge gets nearer for everyone.’
No, Tom relied on the ‘leading think tank’ the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) and its Scottish Director, Russell Gunson. Back in 2015, when he was appointed, the Herald headlined: ‘Leading left-wing think tank appoints first Scottish director’
Then they wrote: ‘One of the UK’s leading centre-left think tanks has appointed its first director in Scotland.‘
I’d say there is a clear difference between the two terms but having read their stuff over the years I’d go for centre-right. However, let’s see how reliable and independent the IPPR and Russel are.
Back in 2014 we could read:
‘The Charity Commission has concluded that the charitable think tank the Institute for Public Policy Research “exposed itself to the perception that it supported the development of Labour Party policy” when it launched a document earlier this year.’
Remember this was the pre-Corbyn, centre-right New Labour Party being referred to.
Moving on to Russel Gunson, see this from the Scotsman in 2007:
‘Two parliamentary researchers, Kezia Dugdale, who works for the Labour MSP Lord Foulkes, and Russell Gunson, who works for fellow MSP Claire Baker, were seconded to Ms Alexander’s office last night to replace Mr Marr on a temporary basis before a permanent replacement can be found. Mr Marr’s departure followed the exit of Brian Lironi, who quit after apparently finding it difficult to work for the Scottish Labour leader. A party spokesman said two new spin doctors would be appointed by the end of the year, in place of Mr Lironi, and it was hoped to replace Mr Marr soon after that.’
Russel clearly has a long association with the Labour Party, not mentioned on the IPPR site or anywhere else, and even spent some time in the jungle (😉) of Labour Party politics as stand-in spin doctor with Kez. I smell a rat, like the ones we saw all over Kez’s face a few weeks ago. Actually, it’s probably Lord Foulkes I smell.
And, it’s clearly not over, see this Dugdale email only a year ago:
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Post Tagged with: “Russell Gunson”
7th December, 2016 10:25 am
Next time you see the IPPR (Scotland) called ‘a leading think tank’, in an attack on the SNP, remember this.