Hi folks! Me again this week, and what a week! Who knew that a golf course would get people talking so much?
So let’s tee off right away (sorry, I’l stop now!). Clairwil reckons that Donald Trump’s plans for a golf resort in Aberdeenshire will, all in all, be a good thing for Scotland, and therefore the rules can stand to be bent a little. Jeff at SNP Tactical Voting agrees, and thinks that Aberdeenshire Council’s planning committee â€“ which rejected the initial application â€“ made the wrong decision. Richard Havers is far more cautious, and Holyrood Watcher, who is clearly not a fan of golf, wonders why anyone who was not willing to come to Scotland’s other golf courses would come to a new one in Aberdeenshire.
However, Aberdeenshire Councillors appear to agree with Jeff’s assessment, with Martin Ford, the Convener of the committee overseeing the application being dismissed from his post at a Council meeting. Cllr Ford receives sympathy from Andrew Burns and Angus Nicolson.
And the process which has led to the plans being called in by the Scottish Government has raised a few eyebrows. Kezia Dugdale smells something fishy, while Angus Nicolson reckons that where planning issues are concerned, not only does everything have to be above board, but it has to be seen to be above board.
But at Holyrood, Nicol Stephen is leading the criticism, much to the delight of Iain Rubie Dale. However, there seem to be more bloggers lining up to take pot shots at the LibDem Leader: Neil Craig takes a look at Stephen’s accusation of ‘cleverness’ on the part of Alex Salmond and wonders when that became a bad thing. While Calum Cashley and Mark McDonald are of the view that Nicol Stephen’s questions have fairly reasonable answers.
Meanwhile, Hacksaw Jim Duggan wonders if Nicol Stephen ought to be throwing stones on this particular issue. And as Richard Thomson and Grant Thoms note, if the reaction of the local press in Nicol Stephen’s Aberdeen heartland is anything to go by, the LibDem Leader’s approach to the story might be backfiring.
Scottish Tory Boy, last week’s excellent rounder-upper, has noticed how quiet Wendy Alexander is over the matter. Conversely, Osama Saeed notes how quiet Nicol Stephen has been over Wendy Alexander’s own political difficulties, and is unhappy about how the press have stopped talking about Donorgate.
Speaking of which, Clairwil discusses Labour donor (at least, until recently) Willie Haughey, who appears to have done rather well out of Labour’s time in office â€“ surely a co-incidence â€“ while RfS looks at the case of Renfrewshire Councillor Tommy Williams, who is under investigation for fraud after being fired from his post as Glasgow City Council.
So scandals have been making waves in the blogosphere, leading Edinburgh Labour Councillor Andrew Burns to write a good post on how all of this spoils politics, and tarnishes the public’s view of politicians.
Elsewhere, terror legislation at Westminster comes under the spotlight, with Bill Cameron taking a look at MPs’ reaction to proposals to extend the time limit on detention without charge from 28 days to 42. And Scott at Love and Garbage takes a look at the UK Government’s approach to civil liberties, following a speech by Jack Straw on the subject.
And during the week, Newsnight produced a report which basically tore to shreds the conclusions reached by right-wing think-tank Policy Exchange on the subject of hateful literature in mosques. Osama Saeed takes a look at the report, while Garry and BookDrunk are exasperated at how the rest of the media simply took Policy Exchange’s word for it, and take a look at the think-tank’s reaction to criticism.
Meanwhile, Kezia Dugdale takes the Tories to task for their policies on single mothers, and looks at alternatives to what the Conservative Party is proposing.
On a similar, and far grimmer note, IndyGal looks at a case of child rape in Queensland, and how the perpetrators have managed to avoid jail. I should advise readers that I personally found the subject incredibly uncomfortable to read about, and it’s a testament to IndyGal’s support for child welfare that she can bring herself to produce a post about it.
To a lighter subject, now, and funding for Edinburgh. Edinburgh Labour Councillor Ewan Aitken calls for extra funding for the Capital, but doubts that it will arrive. On the other hand, Glasgow Labour Councillor Aileen Colleran notes that the Government are considering this issue and wonders why Edinburgh is all that special.
Elsewhere, Saturday saw the largest protests against fuel prices in seven years, with a protest convoy by hauliers travelling along Scotland’s roads. If they’re looking for a sympathetic hearing, they won’t get one from either Tartan Hero or Iain Rubie Dale.
And the Roundup’s very own Duncan has popped up at Liberal Conspiracy, discussing notions of liberalism and what the concept actually means.
On foreign policy, Richard Havers, Holyrood Watcher and Mr. Eugenides all lay in to Gordon Brown for sneaking into Lisbon to sign the EU Reform Treaty long after everyone else had done so, citing a diary clash as his reason for being late, and Ewan Watt casts an eye over a plan to offer fast-tracked EU membership to Serbia in exchange for their recognition of any independence declaration for Kosovo.
Clearly greater IT skills are needed at The Scotsman whose new-look website has been unveiled to a world that isn’t quite ready for it. Certainly, the main comments up to now have been less than favourable, with both Duncan and David Farrer voicing their displeasure.
Staying with the MSM, and News Corporation catches the eye of bloggers this week. Bill Cameron has his eyebrows well and truly raised by an advert for the company in the Telegraph â€“ a rival publication! And The Sun â€“ one of NC’s titles, of course â€“ trumpets Rupert Murdoch’s decision to pass control of UK operations to his son James, though Garry notes that the paper’s website has modestly declined to give readers the chance to leave their own notes of congratulation on the page.
And finally, Michael Greenwell releases a message on behalf of our canine friends everywhere.
So that’s your lot for this week. I’m off to celebrate resisting the temptation to load all of this week’s Roundup with golf-based puns. Duncan is conducting proceedings next week in what will doubtless be the last Roundup before Christmas. As always, you can leave your nominations through the gadgetyshangalang on the right, or by dropping us a cod at firstname.lastname@example.org. Bye-de-bye!