Sunday, 22 August 2010

Ane Pleasant Satyre of the Southern Estaitis

If it hadn't been for the chance promotion of wee Danny Alexander to Chief Secretary to the Treasury the UK Government would lack a single Cabinet Secretary who represents a Scottish seat other than the Scottish Secretary. John Major's last cabinet, with fewer Scottish Members to choose from (11 Tory seats under Major, 12 Coalition seats now), had Lang at Trade and Industry and Rifkind as Foreign Secretary (Forsyth was Scottish Secretary).

Interestingly, Brown had only three (including himself) but Blair had four in his last cabinet - each with far more to choose from than Major. Is the quality of unionist MP from Scotland in decline? I suppose it is blindly obvious that Mundell does not have the quality of Rifkind or Forsyth, that Moore is no Jo Grimond and Danny Alexander isn't even Russell Johnston. It's just as clear, I suppose, that Murphy is no Tom Johnston and Douglas Alexander can't hold a candle to Willie Ross, but are they really that much worse than the fodder being served up south of the border - Vince Cable, Iain Duncan Smith, Chris Huhne, Andrew Lansley, Eric Pickles?

It's just as well we can fend for ourselves, isn't it? Mind how you go!


Anonymous said...

What quality did Rifkind have? His record: poll tax in Scotland, appeasement the fascists promoting an ethnically pure Greater Serbia in the balkans. In class-ridden Scotland and Britain, people think he must be pretty smart because he's got a fruity accent.

Calum Cashley said...

Rifkind was a thoughtful and intelligent politician (I don't know whether he still is, I haven't seen much of him recently). He had a view opposite to mine on Scottish independence, which is a shame, but in that as in so much else he argued his case with intelligence and vigour.

His accent never put me off him any more than the 'posh-boy' tones of Donald Dewar or Tam Dalyell did for them.