Robin McAlpine: As the end doesn’t come nigh how do we stop the prophet of doom?

The End Is Nigh - Precious Metals International, Ltd.
Common Weal’s Advice to the SNP

I was about to quit for the day when I saw this. I almost didn’t bother because I know few read this source but, I read a few lines and thought WTF! Are the Common Weal staff letting him write this stuff unsupervised?

It’s an amazing Old Testament rant from a man who feels he is not being listened to enough and can’t bear it. He forecasts disasters and various crises which can be averted if only we’d adopt the Common Weal approach, three times, and on one occasion, if we’d listen to his solid proposal.

As before, I refuse to go through it line-by-line and refute everything. A flavour of this strange brew will suffice.

He opens with the five messes above. Surely he knows:

The SQA ‘mess‘ is by no means acknowledged by everyone. He needs to read more widely and try to avoid that level of certainty. It often reveals a conservative, establishment and ill-informed mind.

When there is no observable product of an educational process, assessment must be a compromise. The SQA, as expected, emphasised two criteria – statistical reliability and the maintenance of standards. On reflection, the Scottish Government placed another more social criterion, humanity, above them. There will be trouble ahead but there always was. Watch the events unfolding in Rumpuk.

The ‘care home crisis‘ is now clearly evidenced to have been the consequence of the 4 Nations approach to lock-down, corporate reliance on cheap agency staff moving freely, untested by their affluent employers, arriving in places where proper isolation procedures known for decades, with flu and norovirus outbreaks and requiring no new Government guidance, were neglected and of stingy PPE purchasing, exacerbated by English protectionism.

The Nike conference strain of coronavirus has since been shown to be different from all those found in Scotland, indicating that the IMT successfully curtailed its spread resulting in its eradication in Scotland. As for the unwell kilt-fitter, she fitted the kilts two days before the conference.

The ‘early failures on Covid-19 control‘, before the Scottish Government took the reins at the end of March and led us toward infection levels a fraction of those in England and Wales and zero deaths for a month, were clearly due to the 4 Nations approach where the London government dominated the decision-making and the release of information from secret SAGE meetings to, at first, lead the UK down a path toward herd immunity, allow the virus to pass through, let your granny take it on the chin and not lock down ‘too early’ for businesses, all contrary to the advice from the WHO experts furiously ringing the alarum bell and staring goggle-eyed at what Johnson and his men were saying.

And blended learning? What was wrong with developing a strategy based on an educational methodology championed by the Open University for 60 plus years, familiar certainly to all in HE and to most in primary schools since the 1960’s when the Primary Memorandum appeared, as an insurance policy? The Scottish Government, once it had seen the evidence emerging that its lock-down strategy had worked, reacted quickly to restore full-attendance in August. They changed their minds because the circumstances had changed. Intelligent behaviour by others, it seems, is not welcome when you’re busy shouting your head off from the top of some lonely rock.

Right that’s it. I’m off. I feel I’m going to ignore the next epistle. I’m going to get a life. This is clearly a waste my fracking time!

The End Is Nigh - Precious Metals International, Ltd.

9 thoughts on “Robin McAlpine: As the end doesn’t come nigh how do we stop the prophet of doom?”

  1. Just another one of the Wannabe Messiahs. I’m looking forward to seeing how many come forward as we near next year’s election. I’ll stick to the party that has brought us this far. They’re not perfect but they try and when mistakes are made, they try and sort them. The Wannabe Messiahs on the other hand haven’t done anything for my wee country, other than bleat whine greet and moan. Ach, I’ll jist no bother buyin a wheen o palm fronds jist yet.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Oh I dunno, there are plenty of nettles around at the moment, to self flagellate…is that the right word? The end is nigh!!

    Saw McAlpine at a talk about Scotland’s finances (!) once, he could hardly hold back his contempt for the SNP, that was enough for me.

    Aye me too am off to do the recycling, more enjoyable than reading any wannabee’s sh*te.

    Thanks though, always good to know what’s going round the doors, or not!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel your pain John. This is becoming an all too familiar approach from Mr McAlpine. It’s the equivalent in debating of the ‘Gish gallop’.

    One definition (courtesy of Wikipedia) states: “During a Gish gallop, a debater confronts an opponent with a rapid series of many specious arguments, half-truths, and misrepresentations in a short space of time, which makes it impossible for the opponent to refute all of them within the format of a formal debate.

    In practice, each point raised by the “Gish galloper” takes considerably more time to refute or fact-check than it did to state in the first place. The technique wastes an opponent’s time and may cast doubt on the opponent’s debating ability for an audience unfamiliar with the technique, especially if no independent fact-checking is involved or if the audience has limited knowledge of the topics.”

    So you spout forth a list of distinct issues claiming each to be self-evidently demonstrations of a ‘negative’ and therefore in aggregate clear evidence of major failure.

    However in reality each individual issue is complex: the evidence of performance – negative or positive – is actually contestable at the very least

    This kind of approach in political debate is typically deployed by opponents out to undermine credibility: in a Scottish context over recent years the notable exponents of the ‘Gish gallop’ have been Jim Murphy and Ruth Davidson.


  4. Looked at the piece but did not finish reading it. I think he has been reading The Atlantic and a piece by Tom McTeague on the ailing structures of the UK government.

    Good government is not easy. The SNP seems to have upped the game a bit to me, despite the umm “presidential”? approach.

    Liked by 1 person

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