Friday, June 01, 2007

What's Goin' On....

...sang Marvin Gaye but there's now evidence to suggest he had Alex Salmond in mind when he did so. But you do have to ask what is going on with the FM, the SNP and the Edinburgh tram. With all the other parties rallying against them, including their two little chums in the Greens, there is no hope of the SNP winning any vote in the parliament. Margo Macdonald has even suggested that there could be a vote of no confidence in the FM. So why are they pressing ahead with the plan to scrap the tram project?

Could it be that Alex Salmond thinks it's a bigger fight that he can win? If, and it's maybe a big if, could things quickly fall apart to the point that there’s another election? Would this be in the SNP's favour? I think that arguably it would be. The Brown led government in London is going to have its work cut out on other matters, so he and the rest of his Scottish MPs would be otherwise engaged. Most of the rest of Scotland are not too bothered one way or another about the tram and arguably the A9 is more important to most people. Added to which nothing's gone too wrong for the SNP so far, so they may just get some bounce. Anyway, just a theory about what's goin' on......

6 comments:

David Ross said...

I heard it through the grapevine that he said let's get it on.

Richard Havers said...

Mercy, mercy me (what about the ecology?)

Anonymous said...

Cost. Even if they can't cancel it, perhaps they can at least have some of the less essential items, such as the gold plating on the carriages, the jacuzzi in the drivers' quarters, etc stripped away.

I mean, for f**k sake. People are talking about it being the most advanced tram system (tram line) in the world and overrunning to the tune of 1Bn. I was in Prague recently. They have a great tram system which: Definitely isnt the most advanced in the world, has more than one f***ing tram line, and certainly didn't cost 1Bn per line.

And I read that each week that goes by is costing 0.35M. A third of a million per week to do nothing?! The project is not just out of control, it's gibbering insanely and flinging runny lumps of excrement at passers by.

And that is my opinion on the subject.

Anonymous said...

Apparently there are 500 people currently working on the Tram scheme.

From the Herald:

"More than 500 people are currently working on the Edinburgh tram and rail link project, many of whom would face redundancy should it be abandoned. Tie, the publicly-funded body driving the project for Edinburgh City Council, has around 100 people on the tram scheme alone.

A Tie source said: "There are additional implications for the project's partner organisations, which have around 400 people working on the project."

David Ross said...

Anon, those large projects take on an organic nature and there appears to be no overarching control or "accountability" in that respect. Changes in leadership with party politics only serve to exacerbate the problem. The people responsible should be made accountable (to an independent body) for their decisions and actions when it involves spending tax-payers money.

Perhaps another position should be introduced (like the 'Speaker' of the House) say an independent Minister with portfolio for Accountability to represent the tax-payer.

Richard Havers said...

It's like every public project in Britain, they're out of control. All run over budget and no one carries the can. In the private sector shareholders would have the ability to bring people to book. We of course are the shareholders in Scotland PLC and our board members in the Numptorium are by and large caught up in the thrill of it all. Added to which under this daft election PR nonsense there's no one in overall command of the ship. Introducing an electoral system that is designed to prevent a outright winner has meant that it’s compromise all around. Civil servants ultimately don't have accountability either.

We are ending up in a situation without clear leadership, where the rule of average prevails and compromise is king. What hope?