Glasgow Herald stupidly/sneakily(?) base report attacking SNP tax policy on Labour stooge and can’t tell difference between their left and their centre

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(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.’

http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/15778638.SNP_income_tax_hikes_only_delay__quot_deep_cuts_quot__for_a_year/

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.‘

http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/13628537.Leading_left_wing_think_tank_appoints_first_Scottish_director/

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.’

https://www.thirdsector.co.uk/ippr-think-tank-exposed-itself-perception-support-labour-its-report-social-renewal/governance/article/1326918

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.’

https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/labour-rushes-to-plug-gap-left-by-sudden-exit-of-wendy-alexander-s-second-top-spin-doctor-1-700634

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:

LabourList Daily Email

Everything Labour. Every weekday morning.

Post Tagged with: “Russell Gunson”

7th December, 2016 10:25 am

Kezia Dugdale: Tory Brexit gamble has not paid off – and it has held back healing the divisions of the Scotland referendum

https://labourlist.org/tag/russell-gunson/

Next time you see the IPPR (Scotland) called ‘a leading think tank’, in an attack on the SNP, remember this.

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11 thoughts on “Glasgow Herald stupidly/sneakily(?) base report attacking SNP tax policy on Labour stooge and can’t tell difference between their left and their centre

  1. Ludo Thierry December 18, 2017 / 6:46 pm

    Hi John – Blimey!! As Col. William Prescott ( a real Col. this one – in the American Revolutionary Army) told his troops at Bunker Hill on 17/06/1775; “Don’t fire until you see the white of their eyes.” I think you’ve just executed the order to maximum effect right here!!!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Ludo Thierry December 18, 2017 / 6:57 pm

    Oh – I meant to say – As a pontificating idiot myself – “Let’s hear it for the pontificating idiots – Pontificating idiots of the world unite – we have nothing to lose but our chains”.

    Liked by 1 person

    • macgilleleabhar December 18, 2017 / 8:32 pm

      Since the level of discussion has digressed slightly your last comment reminds of of an old Aberdeen story of a trawler deck hand sitting bored again in the dock of the Sheriff court chewing gum with both hands firmly in his trouser pockets when the sheriff called the clerk of the court of and whispered to him ‘Tell the accused to stop masticating” upon which the “Richt toonser“ clerk approached the accused and said, “Hey min! The sheriff says tae tak yer hauns oot o’ yer pooches”
      I assume John is suggesting the Pontiff uses chewing gum.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ludo Thierry December 18, 2017 / 8:04 pm

    Bridging the gap?

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Ludo Thierry December 19, 2017 / 3:11 pm

    Hi John – sorry – grabbing coffee so very short of time – Not meaning to be gnomic or enigmatic or whatever. Was simply playing on the word ‘pontificate’ – This derived from same root at Pontifical and Pontiff. The original Pontiffs were apparently a curious priestly corps in ancient roman republic. Rome being a city built around a river meant that bridges were vital to daily activities. This meant the elites could exercise a lot of control on the citizenry by control of the bridges. These Pontiff priests (as name suggests, ‘pons’ = bridge) had some kind of alternative bridge access to offer. Not sure whether had own bridge (s) or whether could get people across the bridges under their auspices or whatever. So the citizens could reduce the power imbalance by knowing there was an alternative to the conditions demanded by the power elites. The Pontiff priests became viewed as building bridges or bridging gaps or whatever between the competing interests. Or that is how trhe story was told to me!

    Liked by 1 person

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