Good intentions

Good intentions

WESTERN Isles was the last council to count its Euro ballots last week for religious reasons, but Unspun hears that's not the only quirky aspect of democracy in the Outer Hebrides.

Apparently inspired by TV's Chewin' the Fat, one elector wrote "w***, w***, good guy, w***" next to the list of parties and candidates.

Although unconventional, the ballot paper was reportedly declared valid as the voter had "expressed a clear preference".

The good guy, incidentally, was the SNP.

Gone with the wind

TORY environment spokesman Sir Jamie McGrigor hid his wrath well at Holyrood, after Argyll & Bute Council refused planning permission for a huge windfarm on his Ardchonnel estate which could have bagged him £8m.

The morning after, upon spotting the journalist who had lovingly chronicled his misfortunes in the lobby coffee queue, Sir Jamie would have been entitled to a good grouse. Instead he pointed at the nervous scribbler and said: "Oh, it's you! Can you lend me a fiver?"

It's that Old Etonian charm, you know.

Spin op feels strain

IS the strain starting show in the Scottish Government's normally slick spin operation?

Thursday's post-FMQs media briefing turned into a torture session for Alex Salmond's official spokesman, Stuart Nicolson, as the press demanded answers about the costs of setting up an independent Scotland.

Nicolson maintained the figure was unknowable pre-negotiations, but the £2.7bn Treasury estimate was 100 per cent "bulls***". Imagine the language by September 18.