Confirmed: it’s #Leonard v #Sarwar for Scottish Labour


leonard sarwarConflicting rumours have been circulating today about the Scottish Labour leadership. The BBC and others have been reporting that Richard Leonard and Anas Sarwar ’emerged as favourites’, but neither man has formally confirmed that they would stand.

There have also been rumours that no one would stand against Sarwar, giving the ‘centrist’ a walk-over in a win that would set Labour back enormously in Scotland.

A very highly-placed Labour source has told the SKWAWKBOX that there will definitely be no walk-over – and that Scottish Labour’s economy spokesman Richard Leonard will stand.

As no other candidates appear to be interested, it’s therefore set to be a straight fight between a centrist with a voting record that will incense left-wingers – and MSP Leonard, who defied and incensed ex-leader Kezia Dugdale last year by making a statement in support of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party.

Formal announcements are expected…

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£10 an Hour NLW is it Affordable to Businesses

I see this subject doing the rounds again in mainstream media and have had a few on social media challenging whether it is affordable, workable and deliverable, In my mind it is so more on that below.

The first impression I have often got is that business owners see the switch from a single digit National Living Wage i.e £7.50 to a double digit one i.e £10.00 and automatically come to the opinion it is unaffordable and the scaremongering ensues with the comments as to why it is unaffordable.

So lets take a look at that figure of £10 and break it down, if you should be lucky enough doing 39 hours a week over 52 weeks it works out at a yearly sum of £20,280 some may work it out differently but here we will keep it simple but regardless that is the yearly sum give or take a few quid.

That £20,280 a year Gross now does not look so great now given the cost of living and amounts to £1,690 monthly gross, take off income tax and NI and its £1,422.51







If you have other deductions besides Tax and NI you can calculate it here:

I am sure most will agree that when you take into account living costs and housing £1,422.51 is no great sum given the cost of mortgages let alone anything else and with energy companies and other corporates wanting ever more from us this £10 an hour NLW is much needed and shows just how £7.50 is unaffordable to the workforce and why poverty is becoming rampant, it is my opinion which I hope others share that if you are working at least 39 hours a week you bloody well deserve to be looked after and paid enough to meet expenses.

£10 an Hour is not unafforable to employers and if they cannot afford it they need to seriously look at there business models as its not working and remember that £10 an hour helps them as it will generate spending which in-turn creates demand and an increase in profit and employment levels this is basic ecomonics, it also creates happy and healthy employees which reduces demand on public services.

Finally it is my opinion that a £10 an hour NLW cannot wait until 2020 and needs to happen now and certainly at the begining of a new government for the reasons above.



#McDonaldsStrike: “They’re not lovin’ it, but we’re human beings”


As the Huffington Post and other outlets have publicised, staff at two McDonalds stores – in Crayford in East London and in Cambridge – have voted by over 95% in favour of strike action in their fight for fair treatment by the fast-food giant:

hodson hp.jpgThe strike action is scheduled for 4 September with a rally outside McDonald’s HQ in East Finchley on 2 September. Full details of both are below.

The case of the McDonald’s workers should be an eye-opener for many. Fast-food workers get a rough deal in more ways than one – low wages, insecure hours and a lack of sympathy engendered by the popular impression of them as low-skilled people doing the only job they can get: who hasn’t heard of teachers telling their pupils ‘If you don’t work hard, you’ll end up flipping burgers in McDonalds’?

But the reality is a long way from the cliché…

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Conservative MP peeved off because he got a parking fine.

Yes you read that headline right and yes I nearly chocked on my coffee!

Funny how they only take notice when it affects them but the point is, this arbitrary practise has been going on now for years but only now does he feel it worthy of doing something about it.

This MP is one Will Quince he got a fine or how he puts it an invoice for overstaying for 10 minutes in a car park on private land and got caught by the ANPR camera’s


Now I am all for something to be done about this, even if it does come a few years late but he also needs to see the bigger picture, for instance the picture where our NHS employees lost a case for the same thing parking on private land and ended up with a bill of £13m between them and I for one would rather see our public employees doing  a vital job being protected by these parking sharks.

This was widely reported in the press a couple of months ago, but I did not see any MP speaking out against it or taking any action, why is that Will Quince? do you think it is a bigger problem than your solitary £54 fine?

Finally I hope as will many who read my blog will feel that your £54 fine will be a lesson learnt and more importantly force you into action and table an EDM the moment parliament reconvenes in September as I strongly think our Doctors, Nurses and all the other NHS employees feel more grieved than you and deserve justice too and should indeed have a free pass to park whilst doing important work and not have to worry if they have overstayed.

The balls in your court.