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Derek Bateman Derek Bateman | 15:52 UK time, Friday, 10 December 2010

Stewart Stevenson MSP

The producer says I have to write the blog without using the S word - S**W. (There may be references to white stuff and freezing ice goblets) But on Newsweek we will be discussing the aftermath of the big freeze which has had one happy consequence - listening figures are up hugely across Radio Scotland! That's small comfort if you were trapped on the road like a friend of ours who left a birthday party at our house in Glasgow and took 12 hours to reach Blantyre in Lanarkshire with a three-year-old in the car...

Maybe it will make people think twice about commuting. I have an advantage in being close enough to walk to work and to shops, railways etc. The only problem was a water leak in a flat above so our water was off for a day.

We discuss the political witch-hunt for someone to blame and, like a witch, it seems Stewart Stevenson is guilty either way. If he sinks, he drowns. If he floats, take him out and burn him. I'm sure that's how it feels but then this kind of chaos and uncertainty probably requires someone to take full responsibility. Maybe he still will but if the opposition failed to oust the minister in the chamber, it looks unlikely they'll move him over the weekend. It raises questions about our planning too because we have emergency planning officers in ever part of Scotland. Where were they, and what did they do? We'll ask one of them.

Also what does the Chinese 19-country boycott of the Nobel Peace Prize tell us about Beijing and some of the places our soldiers are dying to help... Iraq and Afghanistan? Why are they signing up to China's version of human rights rather than ours?

Mind you, you could argue that the way Julian Assange has been hounded for releasing embarrassing information and the brutal commercial pressure on companies like Amazon from the Americans that human rights are shaky in the West.., exactly the point Vladimir Putin made this week. Human rights are a two-way street. We'll get the view from Sweden on what their government is up to.

We're in Cancun where it's warm and, in case you've forgotten, the climate change conference is on, and we have surprising news for you if you send a child to private school. Most of them stayed open during the freeze... did I mention they made it through the... (that's enough - Ed) See you tomorrow at 8.


  • Comment number 1.

    The Western FATWA

    Radical Islamic leaders must be delighted with this FATWA issued against Assange (WIKILEAKS). Assange is the Salman Rushdie of the West, and like most things coming from westerners: more dissimulate, more treacherous, more ‘civilized’ (quoted like Nietzsche would) and hypocritical - not death penalty... Silence penalty, prison and law suits. One would not expect them (us) to be so dumb and clueless if Napster and the Phonographic industry are well remembered.

    It is odd that these events occur during the ‘Cancun Environmental Meeting on Global Warming’ where greed and cowardness joint forces in its worst and most effective shape.

    It is high time to the elite of power; heirs from the mercantilism start singing their “de profundis”. The Global Surveillance System upon citizens is not a Government monopoly anymore. Wikileaks is the way of getting back at them in a more 'people-gathering' way, and the hundreds of mirrors sites backing up Assange is a stark warning about our very sensitive moment in international politics.


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