Know your enemy I

Know your enemy I

IT WAS meant to be all sweetness, light and sisterhood as Nicola Sturgeon and Jackie Baillie set aside political differences to appear shoulder to shoulder at an anti-poverty event this week.

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The Deputy First Minister obliged with an opening contribution that was a model of consensus. Her Labour counterpart followed by - how shall we put it? - donning her bovver boots and launching a highly partisan attack on nationalism and all its attendant evils, right down to how the latest Gers figures showed welfare would be unaffordable in an independent Scotland.

During the question session Ms Baillie reined back, pointing out that she was getting a lift back to Holyrood with the DFM.

"WERE getting a lift back to the Parliament," Ms Sturgeon commented.

Know your enemy II

It's always a good idea to know your audience in a debate. Labour's James Kelly should've remembered that during a session at Glasgow Uni. He offered wildly different figures for why Scotland's economy wasn't as robust as the UK, billions apart.

The next question from the floor began "Hello, I'm a doctor of Mathematics. My question is for James."

You know where it's going.

Know your enemy III

HAT TIP to the flat owners opposite the conference venue in Edinburgh who welcomed the Conservatives with two large window displays. "Tory scum back to your castles you spoilt little brats," said one. "No to food banks. Eat the rich. Yummy," offered the other.

One does not wish to perpetuate ageist stereotypes about the party, but the metal detectors did carry notices saying they would not interfere with pacemakers and the escalators did seem to be set to the slowest pace possible.

Guilt by association

WHAT is it about the Royal Bank of Scotland that makes people coy about past associations with it? Professor Jeremy Peat was giving evidence to MSPs on the currency union idea this week and mentioned that he had been group chief economist at RBS. He felt compelled to mention that this had been "a very long time ago."