“Patrick Harvie! As leader of the Green party and tenants’ rights minister, please listen to experts! The Wyndford tower blocks can be retrofitted. Please hear us!”

Steady on. He’s Patrick Harvie not Saint Patrick.

I know every FMQs must have a protest these days, but a little perspective would be nice. 

Still, even without the rogue canonisation, it was an interesting session, exposing the Scottish Government’s current woes in all their many-splendored forms. 

There was Douglas Ross and the transgender prisoner row. He’s a man who likes to ask a woman about women who might be men. 

Anas Sarwar passionately demanding action on the NHS. Or “shouting” as Nicola Sturgeon accurately put it. 

And there were the two aspects of the party that do it so much damage – sycophancy and dissent.

The first came from Natalie Don, who replaced vanishing text pest Derek McKay in Renfrewshire North & West a few years back.

Granted, doing better has been a low bar to clear, but she can unimpress in her own right.

Tory Murdo Fraser asked the First Minister about consulting on banning alcohol advertising, and whether it was smart move in a land with a giant whisky industry.

The FM said there were a lot of scare stories out there and nothing had been decided. At which Ms Don read out her pre-cooked patsy question of the week.

Did the FM agree that any potential harm to the booze biz was hypothetical “whereas the real harms…. caused by Brexit are being felt right now” and the Tories ought to do something about it? 

They did. They groaned. 

“I think Natalie Don is so right!” Ms Sturgeon gasped. Yeah, like she didn’t know it was coming.

Then came the dissent. A one man dissent machine, in fact.

Fergus Ewing is extraordinary these days. His hair is white and his face is scarlet. He looks like a departing silverback gorilla. He is volcanically angry at all hours.

He was particularly sulphurous about the Scottish Government’s deposit return scheme, a well-intentioned recycling wheeze that officialdom has made a scandal.

Businesses were “in a state of fear and even despair” over the “fatally flawed” mess, he said, urging the FM to pause a “disaster before it becomes a catastrophe”.

The Tories, recognising one of their choleric clan, hooted and hollered. Come on, Fergie!

Ms Sturgeon said she would “listen and engage”, while sticking rigidly to her plan to launch the thing at the public in August.

As Ms Don smiled along, Mr Ewing’s head nearly detonated. 

It’ll take a bigger saviour than Patrick Harvie to redeem this lot.



#FMQs #sketch #wing #prayer

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