Category Archives: Press Release

Climate Change – Scotsman Article – 19 July 2021


Many years ago I was visiting Georgia in the Caucusus, a parliamentary exchange also facilitating some research for a book I was researching. I recall being shocked at the poverty there which seemed third world, as it was then described, though now more accurately termed the developing world. For whilst it may have been Stalin’s birthplace when the Soviets departed,… Read more »

East Lothian Courier – 16 July 2021


Last week saw Parliament finally have an opportunity to debate the Tory Governments proposed cut to the international aid budget. It’s an issue that concerns many constituents who were in contact with me and where I share their view that its deplorable. I spoke in the debate making it clear that it was about many issues but in particular it… Read more »

The Real Boris – Scotsman Article – 13 July 2021


Boris has no more interest in football than I have in croquet, but he milked the English teams’ success for all it was worth. Unflattering photographs of him in an England shirt and equally grotesque flag displays at Downing Street, worry him not. After all this is the man who was pictured sliding down a rope wire waving union jacks…. Read more »

Not Going to Script – Scotsman Article – 13 July 2021


Sometimes life just don’t go according to script. The football was one such event where like many I thought England were destined to win. More so when it went to penalties and it seemed as if ghosts would be slain. But it wasn’t to be, and I feel sorry for Gareth Southgate and his team. He’s as admirable, as they’re… Read more »

East Lothian Courier – 09 July 2021


Behind the faux bonhomie and jocularity with Boris Johnson there lies a vicious streak. After all he was once accused by the TV interviewer Eddie Mair of being a “Nasty piece of work.” Those traits were certainly in evidence last week where his jocularity over the football was a veneer for repressive and vindictive legislation, as well as benefit changes… Read more »

Batley and Spen – Scotsman Article – 06 July 2021


It wasn’t shrieks of joy from Labour when they sneaked home last week in Batley and Spen, but sobs of relief. What’s being portrayed as some historic victory that now provides the platform for a Labour election victory’s arrent nonsense, when its actually a phyricc victory. One that simply prolongs the moment before they have address just what they’re for,… Read more »

SNP and EU – Scotsman Article – 06 July 2021


It’s one thing in politics to tell folk know what you’re against, that can be easy. It’s a completely different thing though to articulate what you’re for, as that can be complex and risk alienating those you’ve been courting. SNP policy on the EU encapsulates that.  I was happy to support their Westminster debate earlier this week condemning the UK… Read more »

East Lothian Courier – 02 July 2021


Football’s coming home all right but not as hoped by some, as it’s the staggering rise in infections that’s winning. It may have been the young lads who travelled and others of all ages who gathered that’s fired it but just what did Governments both sides of the border expect would happen? When youth football was unable to resume for… Read more »

Sporting Integrity – Scotsman Article – 29 June 2021


With the Olympics coming round again I’ve been minding past moments. In particular, the 100 metres contest in 1988 that pitted the USAs Carl Lewis against Canada’s Ben Johnson. I suppose Allan Wells success at earlier games had sparked interest but, in any event, it’s one of the highlights for me. I confess to rooting for Johnson who seemed that… Read more »

Tactician Not Strategist – Scotsman Article – 29 June 2021


I’ve an old friend who spent many years in international affairs at the highest levels, often trying to broker settlements on very testing issues and mingling with all sorts of leaders. So, when he spoke I listened, and I recall him describing Nicola Sturgeon as a tactician not a strategist. By that he meant that she’s very able in setting… Read more »