The Grand Tour: Fife and Beyond

Ramblings of an inveterate cyclist

No Names, No Pack Drill.

The girl that wrote this piece below has it spot on, she has summed up what many of us have been saying in our blogs and talking about on social media, for a year now. Scotland has been let down by this SNP led government.

I felt I should publish this now, (I’m sure she will not object to me doing so), for we Scots have to wake up, and ditch these incompetent governments, both here in Scotland and at Westminster. More delay is not the answer, it only gives Boris more time to work on his Great British Nation plans. I switched on the television this morning, and the BBC was doing a travel programme, they would be travelling around ‘All four nations of the UK’ with their roadshow, highlighting the greatness and diversity of this Great Union of nations. Aye right.

It is not more Boris propaganda we need it is proper government, we need independence. We have local elections coming up next year, let’s send a clear message to Nicola Sturgeon, by voting for parties that really are interested in independence for Scotland not the self interest of Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP Part. All the Yes groups need to be singing from the same hymn sheet – Independence not more delay, in the up and coming Council Elections.

SCOTLAND’S CHOICES – LIFE OR DEATH

You’ve seen the figures for Scottish deaths from Covid-19; amongst the worst in the world and the positive case numbers are the highest in Europe. There are reasons for this, not the least of which are the obvious strategy of following the 4 Nations approach, refusing to close borders and ports, being feart to depart from Boris’ line and moving positively tested patients into nursing homes. The early abandonment of test, trace and isolate was wrong – I said so then, in March 2020, and got pelters for it. My Dad was in hospital repeatedly over 2020 and though he never had Covid, was never in a Covid ward, there were patients in his wards who had Covid – contrary to advice tendered, wards were mixed, some ambulance personnel refused to wear masks and gloves, including those contracted by Forth Valley Hospital privately, and my family’s loud complaints were useless after the fact of a deadly virus. PPE supplies didn’t run out but at times were in jeopardy. Courts were not prepared at all. Not at all. No social distancing, no hand wash, no masks; just busy courts full of folk mingling. Then when the guillotine fell on 23rd March the courts were closed; some have barely reopened since and justice, especially for those on remand, and for families, and children in care, has suffered, to the great shame of a country which considers itself modern, civilised and progressive.

The presence of Covid-19 in Scotland, its virulence, its murderous nature – all of that was known at least since February when skiers and rugby fans were exposed; our FM knew about pandemics because she was previously our Health Secretary. What prep was there in public life or in the NHS for Covid-19? Seems like not so much from what I saw then. Even when there was a requirement for patients aged 70+ to be tested on admission to hospital, that was not extended to patients already in hospital; some patients were allowed visits from relatives not wearing masks, other patients were denied visits and were given life changing information, including death sentences, while alone without a close relative for solace. Carers employed by private companies drove around teams, in panic, on overtime, delivering aprons, masks and gloves. I was in hospital in Glasgow after first lockdown and barely any staff had as much as a mask; there were shared pens, for inane form-filling, no hand sanitiser and yet only urgent appointments were conducted so that for many months standard diagnostic matters have been ditched.

We’re paying a bigger and unnecessary price for this lack of preparation now – many of us have not been able to see a GP on time or get a referral for a health issue when further assessments are desirable so that problems have been stored up and issues have developed through ignorance and delay. Folk with life threatening cancers now could have lived had they been seen last year; mental health patients might not be contemplating suicide had they had therapy before now; I’m a minor player in the game as I’ve just been waiting for an MOT on the leg for 18 months. I will get a couple of new ones, but the parts are delayed because of Brexit.

So, you know I am not a fan of the notion that Independence comes when Covid-19 is gone. Am I wheech. And here’s another reason why – the Scottish drugs death statistics are due soon, unless they are massaged and delayed once more. 1264 people died in Scotland through drugs last year. Most of us on or near the front line fear this year will be worse. And that remains Scotland’s shame. One hundred and more years ago folk like my Grandads born into poverty in Lochee and Clackmannanshire saw a way out through Army service; later in mines and heavy industry. Nowadays the descendants of their peers see no hope. It is very hard to be optimistic in Scotland today; we’ve become jaded, scared, isolated with a government telling us we have to hang onto the coat tails of Westminster for a while yet. If we need Westminster to recover from Covid, isn’t that a white flag? A sign that we in Scotland believe that we cannot stand up for ourselves, cure ourselves, create our own futures, liberate ourselves, craft our own dreams, ambitions, aims and aspirations?

It is time, Scotland – time to stand up, get off our knees, we’re in the ring, and it has become time we danced.

Keep safe.

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