Sunday, August 7, 2011

Questions to which the answer is "what do you mean, 'Tom'? My name is ADMIN"

Day 5 of the Labour Hame Vigil, and still no hint of an explanation as to how the answer "no" could possibly have proved to be "incorrect" just a matter of hours after we were told "either 'yes' or 'no' is acceptable".  The wait continues. In the meantime, our old friend the admin is continuing his eager efforts to definitively "move on" from his embarrassment by posing yet another question -

Why are the SNP so reluctant to introduce even a modest measure of bus re-regulation?

This time I really will have to say 'pass', because bus regulation is not something I've ever given a lot of thought to, and I don't have any special insight into the SNP leadership's thinking on the matter. However, I'm quite sure other nationalists will have very full answers, which as usual will either be "not answers" or "incorrect". But, as ever, in posing the question, the admin has left himself and his comrades with a much trickier one to answer themselves -

If a modest measure of bus re-regulation is such an obviously sensible thing for a left-of-centre party to do, why didn't Labour do it during their rather long spell in government?

Just to make it even tougher for you, Admin, I must caution you that, while either a 'yes' or 'no' answer is acceptable, no qualifications will be permitted.


  1. You should see the latest edition.

  2. Chancellor Mosley,

    Genius, pure genius. Can we have more please?

    If James will permit me, I’d like to add a joke, in keeping with the spirit of “Labour Pains”.

    Rupert Murdoch is sitting in a room with Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and Iain Gray. Murdoch turns to Blair and says, “Tony, you and I have had hundreds of cordial meetings over the years and I’m pleased to say that we’re still the closest of friends”. Murdoch then turns to Gordon Brown and says, “Gordon, we too, have had hundreds of meetings over the years, they’ve not always been cordial it’s true, but I’m pleased to say that I still consider you a close friend”. Then Murdoch turns to Iain Gray and says, “I’m sorry, but I don’t think I know you”, at which point Gordon Brown intervenes and says, “Hold on Rupert, isn’t this the guy that threw the custard pie at you”?

  3. Excellent Chancellor Mosley... likewise Anon.

    Well, James, it's [ahem] starting to look like you're not going to get an answer to your question: "How can the answer "no" possibly have been proved to be "incorrect" just a matter of hours after we were told "either 'yes' or 'no' was acceptable?".

    So that's another question that 'Labour "Hame"' (yuk) can't answer, I presume?

  4. Absolutely, Tris, although intriguingly we've made much more progress with the question I asked in the post above. Cynical Highlander asked something very similar, and this was Admin's response -

    "However, to answer your question – Labour should have done more to re-regulate the buses."

    To give him his due, that's (for the first time in recorded history) a very straight answer, although the level of detail he goes into on the subject leads me to the strong suspicion that you were right all along - Admin is indeed the former transport minister Tom Harris. If so, why so bashful, I wonder?

  5. Actually, I'm being too generous to him - a straight answer would have explained why Labour didn't do more, rather than just accepting they should have done more.

  6. Can anyone tell me why a regulated bus is better than the kind we have now. I note that Labour Hame rule out a return to municipally owned and run buses which is a pity - that was a system I remember working well in cities across the UK.

    I'd quite like cheaper buses myself.

    As to the real question our Labour chums, ie why did Souter get nominted for a knighthood, we should resist the temptation to look back at such issues as Bernie Ecclestone's million quid / F1 fag adverts, and accept it doesn't look great. The lesson should be that the SNP should tell all who support it that in order to prevent snide assertions from opponents, the SNP will never recommend honours for its supporters. that will leave opponents to explain why their ranks are full off Sirs, Lords, quango chairs, etc.

  7. Perhaps, James, in fairness to Harris, your jibes have made him reflect on just how unsustainably silly his blog was looking, and he has decided to adjust his attitude to responses a little.

    I suspect that, having admitted that he gave up blogging in the hopes of securing a seat on the shadow cabinet in England, he had no desire to return to front line blogging in a blaze of glory, fearing that it might look like second best for a disappointed who put his shirt on the wrong Millipede, as it were.

  8. Admin has had a go at me for going off at a 'tangent' for replying to his implication*s about dodgy honours. It seems that he is allowed to change his agenda at will, and comments on the parts of it he has decided to abandon (having realised that they are indefensible) will be dealt with by the trademark snide comment.

    Labour Hame remains the gift that keeps giving. An otherwise good post on the same-sex marriage issue was marred by a silly swipe at the SNP, the inference being that the SNP is a nest of homophobes. The effect was rather spoilt by the first comment. This was vile and intolerant, in stark contrast to subsequent messages from some of the usual SNP followers of LH.

  9. Ooops! Admin's upset with me. I asked him to tell me who would pay for the cost of regulating the bus industry. He closed comments on the topic. Epic Fail, Admin, as the young folks says.

  10. So, to recap, I asked Admin to define what regulation of bus industry means - he didn't answer.

    I asked how additional services on non-profitable routes, requiring more buses, more drivers, more fuel, couild be funded if not from passenger fares. He took the huff and closed the thread.

    I never disagreed with him once, I only ever asked for explanations. And he expects people to vote for him at the next elections?

    So the answer to the question according to Admin is 'P*ss off'

  11. Interesting that his reason for closing the thread appears to be that his question has been answered - things must be getting desperate for him to admit that!

    Also his response to your comment "I know you are a politician, but break the habit of a lifetime and answer the question" was this -

    "Richard, I’ll ignore your ignorant and dim-witted comment at the end"

    Now is that someone indirectly denying he's a politician, or just a very touchy politician? My money's on the latter.

  12. Richard: When you ask "Admin" questions to which the true answer is not to the liking of the right of the Labour party, the answer becomes a stony silence. Rather like James, you appear to have asked this kind of question.

    Epic fail as you said.

  13. My money is on the second option too.

    I so recognise that style.

    A'body's ignorant and dim witted but oor Jock, huh?

  14. I feel a little dirty and guilty, but also rather elated at having got under Admin's skin. He really should learn not to start fights he can't win. I particularly enjoyed his abandonment of the Soutar honours issue when I mentioned Marcia Falkender as the first of nearly half a century of dodgy Lab peerages. He just pretended he'd never alluded to it.

  15. Absolutely, and at the end you asked him a very straight and reasonable question, which he was clearly unable to answer, and in a panic he simply declared victory and closed the thread.

    For what it's worth, my own instinct (not having thought about the subject much) is that more regulation would be a positive development, but if the Admin can't explain in plain language why it's supposedly such a self-evidently sensible thing to do, he's hardly in a position to demand an explanation from SNP supporters of why the government isn't doing it. And, of course, he's also failed to explain why the last Labour government didn't do it themselves - he's presumably implying that the SNP must be in the pocket of Souter, so who were Labour in the pocket of?

  16. so who were Labour in the pocket of?

    Try for starters.

  17. Confirmed.

    Duncan Hothersall says:
    August 8, 2011 at 6:08 pm

    Go for it Tom, I’ve jabbered enough today!

  18. A suggestion for AdTom

    Questions to which the answer is “Er…” – Number 7

    Please explain the benefits of regulating bus services, and how it is to be paid for.

  19. I'm in favour of cross subsidy from profitable to less profitable routes - that probably makes me a regulation fan. But if it means the fare I pay increases significantly to pay for fore extra buses to run nearly empty on routes that drain funds from the system, or causes fares to rise, I'm not. I'm up for more buses, not up for more costs.

  20. Questions to which the answer is “Er…”

    1. Name a Seaside town near Prestwick?

    2. Where's no here?

    3. David Milliannd is a toss_ _?

  21. Chancellor MoselyAugust 8, 2011 at 9:34 PM

    3. David Miliband is a toss_ _?

    Chancellor Mosely is an idiot

  22. I just posted this at LH in answer to AdTom's latest masterpiece "Whaur's yer solidarity noo, Eck.
    Just for the record, if it gets modded.

    An answer to your question:

    “Police from Scotland are being sent to England to help combat riots and disorder in cities across the country.

    250 riot trained officers have been sent as part of the mutual aid scheme between the countries.

    First Minister Alex Salmond said there was an obligation to help but Scotland would not be left unprotected, with over 17,000 police officers remaining here.”

    Not much sign of ‘seperatist’ bile and venom in the FM’s remarks as far as I can see, and as reported by the British Broadcvasting Corporation.

    Now I’ve answered that point for you, any chance of an answer to the question I asked you a couple of days back?

  23. As predicted, AdTom gave my post the heave-ho. The Pravda approach, so democratic and inclusive. But, I suppose if the Labour Hame lot just keep talking to themselves, they'll never understand why they've been abandoned. Eventually they'll disappear, just leaving a wee stench of sanctimony and hypocrisy behind as a memory.

  24. Richard Lucas,

    While I commend the persistence of nationalist posters like you, Indy and others, in knocking your collective heads against the brick wall that is Labour Shame, do remember that you're actually helping them, in two respects.

    First, being clueless and pretty boring themselves, they need your arguments to give them something interesting to talk about. Take away the nat-baiting from Labour Shame and there really isn't much left.

    Second, if nationalists boycotted Labour Shame (as I think they should), can you imagine how unbearably dull it's pages would be? They need us much more than we need them.

    You're not going to discourage these people from their obsession with British nationalism. Now that their temporary entertainment value is beginning to wear off for most (Scottish) nationalists - at best, it's just tiresome now - time to leave them to it or use more enlightened forums like this to poke fun at them.

    Though I have to say that ridiculing such a soft target as Labour Shame maybe shouldn't be classified as 'fun', it's more akin to cruelty and mocking the afflicted.

  25. You're right of course, Anon, although part of me thinks that there should be a decent opposition in Scotland just to keep the SNP sharp and battle-ready.

    Quitting Labour Hame is like stopping smoking. You do quite well for a week or two, then a moment of weakness sets you off you again. You realise it's doing you no good, and then you have to go through the effort of quitting all over again. You are angry, irritabel, moody, and then it passes, and you can feel good about leaving it behind you.... till the next time. (sighs)

  26. Richard Lucas,

    Could I add that you can forget all the spurious reasons that Tom Harris provides to justify his criticism of Alex Salmond on the English riots issue.

    What really sticks in the craw of British nationalists like Harris is that when they see that institutions like the BBC are, at long last, dropping their inaccurate reference to these riots as “UK” and correctly referring to them as “English” riots, Alex Salmond and the SNP are, as a consequence, being seen to have won the argument.

    It’s the political effects of this in Scotland that have caused Harris and other Britnats in Scotland to blow a gasket. To paraphrase Noam Chomsky, what they understand is that he who controls the language has the power.

  27. Richard Lucas,

    LOL. What you need is a Labour Shame patch. They come in glitzy little tartan wrappers, with tartan accents on the borders of the patches themselves. Like the nicotine variety, they’re completely useless of course, but at least they make you feel that you’re ‘doing something’, anything, about your addiction.

    I see that the perverse logic of Labour Shame has now moved on to even more absurd territory. Apparently, although these riots are happening in England, the fact that they COULD happen anywhere in the UK makes them UK riots!

    But why stop at the UK here, let’s include Europe in this, no, let’s go further, these riots could happen anywhere in the world, ergo these are world riots, QED innit!

    Of course, there’s always the possibility that one of the underlying causes of these riots is related to the historical, social and cultural specificity of England’s inner cities but why trouble ourselves with such anthropological/sociological gobbledegook when there’s some cheap unionist political points to score here over the narrow, parochial, insular ‘nats’.

    If you think about it, this line that they’re pushing is insulting to the English themselves. For it effectively says to them, there’s nothing unique about your situation, you might think that your circumstances are special, but we can assure you that they’re not. We can do riots too you know, maybe not as often as you and maybe not with such devastating effects as you but that’s only because we’re not as irresponsible as you. So we’re not going to let you get away with this attempt of yours to convince the world that England is somehow special, this is a UK problem and don’t you forget it old chap.

    I’ll bet my grannies budgie that everyone of these Labour Shamers will be going to bed tonight saying a little prayer: ‘Please Lord, bring these riots to Scotland, it doesn’t have to be much, just one will do, but please, please, please bring them to Scotland so that we can stuff the nats’.

    It does make you think though. If they’re so insistent that we’re all, under all circumstances British, to the extent that riots that happen in England should be unquestioningly and instinctively referred to as ‘UK’ riots, why on earth did they go to all that trouble to set themselves up as the ‘Scottish’ Labour Party? To which there can only be one answer, Er...

  28. Oops, 'granny's budgie'. As it happens, I do have two grannies, but they don't live together sharing the same budgie!