Frequently Asked Questions
Should we trust politicians?
Trust them for what? To make good laws? What evidence do we have that they do? We need more than “Trust me” from a politician.
There is no reason at all why we should trust them as politicians. The Scottish Christian Party asks voters to trust it as Christians, not as politicians. You can trust a Tory to be a Tory, Labour to be Labour, etc. Politicians have a limited life span, and a Parliamentary session is limited. One government cannot hold a succeeding government to its policies. Most politicians take a short-term view of politics, just as investment bankers took a short-term view towards profits, encouraged by extortionate bonuses. Such short-term attitudes led to our over-heated boom and bust economy, and the current financial crisis.
We should trust politicians for something more than politics, something more than their policies. How can we trust a party which does not keep the pledges of its own manifesto?
The Scottish Christian Party addresses these issues.
1. Our manifesto advocates holding governing parties to their own manifesto.
2. The SCP does not say: “Trust us; we are politicians.” We say: “Trust us; we are Christians.” We have a set of Christian values, upheld by Christian politicians - values which shaped the western world and all that is good in democracy. These values do not change. This is why people should trust the Scottish Christian Party.
- 21 Jan 2011: Broken promises by our Governments.
- 8 Mar 2011: Why do we trust politicians to make good laws?
- 9 May 2013: David Davis explained on Question Time that the reason why eurosceptic Conservative MPs are trying to engineer a Commons vote next week on an EU referendum before the 2015 General Election is because people have lost such trust in politicians that the Prime Minister’s promise of a referendum is not enough and the public will not trust the promise.
What do people mean by a change of culture?
6 Feb 2013: The BBC news today mentioned three examples of the need of a ‘change of culture’.
The first item on the news was described as “one of the worst scandals in the history of the NHS”: the systemic failures at Stafford Hospital. The inquiry chairman, Robert Francis QC, said the failings went right to the top of the health service. It took £30m and two years to produce a report which speaks of ignoring warning signs and calls for a change in culture of the NHS. On Newsnight tonight, even the GMC was accused of being “not fit for purpose”.
The second item was the Royal Bank of Scotland, which was fined £390m by UK and US authorities for its part in the Libor rate-fixing scandal. In a BBC interview, the chief executive of RBS, Stephen Hester, said that there must be a change of culture.
The third item was fish catches. The EU voted to change the culture of ‘fish discards’, in which one quarter of fish catches are thrown back dead into the sea.
This snap-shot of one day’s news is testimony to the enormous and growing FAQ “Why do you keep talking about corruption?”.
The Scottish Christian Party comments: the problem is not the culture but the people in charge. It is a failure of leadership.
Speaking of ‘system failure’ or ‘let’s not look for scapegoats’ are used as a smoke-screen to avoid ‘naming the sin’ and identifying the sinner. The country is being failed by smooth talkers, and if the media is to recover the trust of the public, it will need to expose the posturing of many of those in charge of institutions which are too big for them to manage. “Too big to fail” obscures the fact that such institutions are too big for individuals to take responsibility and so one must blame ‘system failure’.
The system failure is actually the values of the leadership. It is not a failure of leadership, but of the values of these leaders. Good workers are being failed by bad workers and bad leadership. This is a ‘value judgment’, but in this era of ‘non-discrimination’ we are not allowed to say so.
Instead of changing the culture, we need to change the personnel. The same is true in the political sphere. We need politicians we can trust. Jesus reminds us not to put a new patch on an old garment. This is why the Scottish Christian Party exists - to bring a new form of politics into public life.
- 6 Feb 2013: the blame is being laid on a box-ticking culture. Is this all there is to it? The inquiry chairman, Robert Francis QC, said the failings went right to the top of the health service. He made 290 recommendations, saying “fundamental change” was needed to prevent the public losing confidence. Rather, the public has already lost confidence. What makes anyone think that more recommendations will change people’s hearts? This is the same mistake as thinking that politicians making laws will change people’s hearts.
- 7 Feb 2013: on Question Time tonight, Michael Moore MP said: “What is wrong with the culture? Where have we failed?” Answers focused on managers who had replaced doctors and nurses, some on money and leadership, but none upon the ungodly, unaccountable attitude fostered by our ungodly, secular society. Lord Falconer, former Justice Secretary, said: “I don’t know the answers. Why did compassion depart from the staff?” When people lose accountability to God, they will not feel as accountable to their fellow human beings. One panelist said that politicians will be judged at the ballot box, but there is a higher judgment. On perjury and perverting the course of justice, Lord Falconer emphasized the importance of not pushing around the legal system. The Scottish Christian Party prefers to inform people’s consciences by the light of the Gospel, instead of cracking the whip of judicial fear.
Broken promises by our Governments
Many politicians act as if promises are cheap. However breach of promise is very expensive not only in terms of voters’ confidence but in terms of God’s holding them to account for their ill-considered lies. The Saviour tells us that “every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment” Mat 12:36. This includes broken promises.
Once in opposition a political party which has just broken its own promises will turn on the governing party for breaking its promises. As “the pot calls the kettle black” the public looks on frustrated that they have been caught out again by political half-baked promises. Politicians make promises which they expect people to ‘understand’ that they must break because of the severe financial crisis or some other constraint.
It is par for the course to make and break promises. It works because people are so gullible as to believe unbelievable propositions. It happens because people do not plan properly for unseen eventualities; and when they get caught out they claim that such and such an event could not possibly be foreseen. Well - plan for them!
This unholy skill of making and breaking promises is not confined to politics. It courses through life because of the lack of Christian education in our schools and institutions.
The unholy alliance between political parties, which take it in turn to accuse the governing party of breaking its promises, is similar to the agreement that people in public life can blaspheme at will but one must not miscall one’s neighbour. The standards of public life are being eroded as we lose our Christian backbone.
Meanwhile we look at a list of broken promises by our Governments, conscious that the Christian Party has yet to be held to account. However, our Manifesto plans to address this glaring problem in public life.
“Mr Cameron initially championed gay marriage as a personal cause when he surprised his party by announcing his intention to introduce the reforms two years ago.” This shows how little people can trust politicians.
Referendum on Europe
Labour promised a referendum on Europe, and broke this promise. The Conservatives promised a referendum when Labour would not do so, but then David Cameron backed down on the pretext that the moment had passed.
The Tories told us that their massive changes to the NHS in England was on pp. 45-47 of their Manifesto. However prior to the election David Cameron denied a top-down reform. What are we getting? A top-down reform without any consultation.
David Cameron indicated that Education Maintenance Allowance was safe in Tory hands, but no longer.
VAT The broken promises about not putting up VAT.
The Lib Dems have promised much and achieved little. So much so that support for them has collapsed from 8% in May 2010 to 4% in January 2011. It is generally conceded that their vote was propped up by Conservatives in the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election in January 2011.
Their broken pledge on student fees was so damaging that Nick Clegg eventually had to apologise for it.
Danny Alexander’s flagship plan to cut fuel prices in rural areas is coming stuck on the rocks of Europe. His election pledge is taking ages to implement because of the European Union juggernaut; it demonstrates that we cannot manage our own affairs without going cap in hand to Brussels. The sooner we are rid of Brussels the better. As prices increase there is talk of a Rural fuel desert as filling stations disappear in rural Highlands.
What is the solution? The SCP Manifesto suggests improvements to this mayhem and litany of broken promises, to restore public confidence in the political process. However, it comes down to the people involved. One trusts people, not policies, and thus the SCP offers Christian politicians and Christian solutions to solve the nations woes.
I do not know much about politics; where do I begin?
This section on Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) is designed to help you to:
1. learn about the Scottish Christian Party;
2. see the need for Christian politics;
3. brush up on the current issues;
4. direct you to our detailed policies.
You can keep up to date by viewing the news items on our regularly updated home page. The stories are archived under the News menu. Click on the links below for a quick, initial overview.
- the importance of politics
- our statement of faith
- Will I waste my vote on a new Party? Here’s something to ponder. Besides, is any vote proclaiming Christ’s Lordship wasted? Further, you could waste it voting for a mainline Party. How? Click here to find out.
I vote for mainstream parties - can you persuade me to vote for the SCP?
First, even if you don’t vote for us, you could pray for us. There are a variety of ways to support the aims of the SCP.
Secondly, with the new voting systems, you have more votes available than you may realise. If you are allowed to vote four or more times, why should one of these not be for the SCP?
You want to chose wisely, because the Single Transferable Vote (STV) system enables you to register a vote for the SCP first and if we do not succeed, then your vote automatically transfers to your second choice. You do not waste a vote by voting for us first, and you can make all your choices count if you are wise. It is possible to waste your vote simply because you do not know the system. The voting system is different in different types of election.
If you have spoken to local politicians, you will know that they will listen politely to your point of view, then they will tell you that they must represent the views of all their constituents. This is a polite way of telling you that you are wasting your time and you will discover that you are hitting your head against a brick wall. Smart people will use politicians who really care about their issues. A political party activist does not take their concerns to their unsympathetic local politician; they take it to their own party politicians to make them aware of the issue and do something about it. Do you have a Christian politician who cares about your issues?
Any group of Christians divides easily as follows: 1. those who think religion and politics don’t or ought not to mix, and want nothing to do with the SCP. Our answer to this is here. 2. Of those who think otherwise, they then divide easily into those who think that Christians should work within existing political parties and those who thank God for the existence of the Scottish Christian Party because now they don’t need to feel disenfranchised.
If Christians find it difficult to reform churches, they are even less likely to reform a political party until these parties begin to lose votes to a Christian Party. So, not only does the SCP fulfil a need in itself, but as its voice and vote grows, it begins to influence the other Parties in the same way as the Greens have influenced other parties.
Is it possible? Yes - because it has already begun. 1. we have had electoral success in Wales. 2. If Christians who voted for us had understood the voting system better, we would have had electoral success in Highland Council. 3. We already have a distinctly Christian voice in politics, and it is possible to have a distinctly Christian voice in Holyrood.
Who are the Scottish Christian Party?
The Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship” was registered with The Electoral Commission on 29 April 2004. It is a national political party, known in England as the Christian Party, in Wales as the Welsh Christian Party or The Christian Party of Wales, and in Scotland as the Scottish Christian Party.
It was founded as Operation Christian Vote by the Rev. George Hargreaves, London, and it differs from other Christian parties by being a faith-based political party.
We are made up of Christians from various churches, denominations and local fellowships with a common purpose to demonstrate the love and justice of God through political service in the elected public institutions of civil society. We do not claim to represent all Christians.
The primary purpose of the Christian Party is to proclaim the Lordship of Christ. This is our Christian worldview. Politicians to learn sooner rather than later that He is King of kings Psalm 2:10, and political processes need to reflect this. The party also exists to empower those who confess “Jesus Christ as Lord” to serve Him in the political sphere.
The Christian Party is a Bible-believing, faith-based conservative party which believes in small government, greater neighbourly involvement, low taxes based upon an economy driven by thrift and enterprise rather than debt, consumerism and hand-outs.
The Party has three local councillors in Wales and has fought elections at Holyrood, Westminster, and the European level. Standing in alliance as Christian Voice in the 2009 European elections, we secured the ninth largest national poll with almost a quarter of a million first choice votes.
In October 2010, Dr Donald Boyd was appointed leader of the Scottish Christian Party, with George Hargreaves remaining the leader of the Christian Party, and Jeff Green the leader of Christian Party (Wales).
What do you stand for?
Summary by STV’s Face-to-Face programme.
The Christian Party believes that it represents the best balance of the best characteristics of the other main parties - the financial prudence of the Tories and their conservative instincts; the social conscience of Labour and their concern for the working man; our paramount concern for religious and civil liberties championed in the past by the Lib Dems and their regard for freedom of speech; a care for the environment with conscientious accountability for Earth’s resources seen in the Greens; and the passion for Scotland and our heritage voiced by the SNP. However, each of these parties is unbalanced in some aspect even of their best policies, and we try to get these in balance. So what colour should your politics be?
1. We believe in small government and aim to reduce bureaucracy and improve efficiency. We offer sound moral values ~ family and communities ~ investing for healthy and educated children ~ supporting disability ~ individual freedom within the law ~ educational and training opportunities ~ developing self-worth and one’s God-given potential ~ self-sufficiency in energy supplies ~ buoyant economy ~ safe environment ~ strong national defence ~ a United Kingdom and mutual international respect.
2. The Scottish Christian Party offers integrity in political leadership and a strong commitment to family values, freedom with responsibility, and time-honoured moral standards. We have a vision for Scotland which even the Scottish National Party does not articulate.
3. In order to stand for these in public life we need your support. Can you stand with us, and by God’s grace revitalise our society?
4. For more information on the need for Christian politicians acting in public life, see the various articles at The Christian Institute.
5. The Christian Institute fights legal cases to defend Christians being harassed for expressing their faith. The Christian Party engages in the political process in order to change these laws with which Christians are harassed. If Christians will not spend time, money and effort in the political process, then they will spend time, money and effort in defending themselves against religiously-motivated harassment. It is the difference between fire prevention and fire-fighting.
For a Question and Answer interview see here.
What is your doctrinal basis?
We are pleased that anyone is interested in doctrine - a rare interest nowadays.
The official name of our political party is Scottish Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship”. There are not many people, even Christians, proclaiming Christ’s Lordship in public life.
We do not ask people to commit to all that we stand for. Most voters simply vote for parties without any commitment to them, and some political party members do not support all that their own party stands for - some don’t even like their own leader.
We do ask you to pray for us and our vision. However if you wish to commit to any extent, you could spread the word, vote for our candidates, donate to our work, join the party, follow us on twitter or the website, or a host of other things depending upon your God-given gifts and interests. However, the easiest thing would be to give us a phone on 01463 796952 and we will be happy to answer your questions.
When did the SCP begin as a political party?
The party was registered with The Electoral Commission on 29 April 2004. Our official name is Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship” but we have several official party Descriptions such as the Scottish Christian Party or the Christian Party of Wales. (The Electoral Commission weblink formerly pointed to the relevant page on The Electoral Commission website, but this is no longer available because the statutory registers maintained by The Electoral Commission have moved to a new website called Party and Election Finance Online. The weblink takes you to this page, then click on Registration Search in the left hand menu and then enter Christian Party into the search box. The Results appear at the bottom of the page.) Following a lapse of its registration in 26 July 2012 by the UK leader of the Party, a new Party with the same name, emblems and purpose, but with a new constitution and new party officers, was registered with The Electoral Commission on 29 January 2013 by the leaders in Wales and Scotland of the former Party.
What is the relationship of the SCP to the Christian Party?
The Scottish Christian Party is the name for the Scottish section of the Christian Party, just as other national parties refer to themselves as Scottish Conservatives or Scottish Labour. The name occurs as a link on the official Christian Party home page.
This name is registered as one of the party descriptions at The Electoral Commission.
The Welsh section of the Christian Party refers to itself as the Welsh Christian Party or the Christian Party (Wales).
How can I help the Scottish Christian Party?
No-one can do everything, but everyone can do something.
Even those who are housebound can still pray for a Christian voice in public life.
Some have time, but no money; others have money but no time to contribute.
Most people can make a small donation.
You can raise awareness; you may want to consider our Brother Andrew campaign.
You can refer people to this website which is fully researchable.
You can vote for us. Many people vote for a party but never join it, or get involved.
You can become a member of the Party.
You could begin or encourage someone else to begin a local group.
You could consider becoming a candidate or suggest a candidate in your area.
You could contact us to discuss how to help. Tel: 01463 796952
You could email us if you have a question.
What does a Christian Party local councillor look like?
Some people think that political parties should stay out of local councils and local politics. The Scottish Christian Party believes that a Christian Voice needs to be heard at all levels of society.
How does a Christian Party local councillor differ from other councillors?
Christianity impacts on the whole of life, at local and national level, and at every level between - from the individual, to the family, to the Queen on the throne.
A national party needs to be represented at each level of government in order to be informed and effective. Thus we have Manifestos for Holyrood, Westminster and the European Parliament. Even if our policies were exactly the same as other parties, we would still need to be represented at local council level in order to contribute a Christian voice at this level, and to make a difference at the national level. However, we like to think that we have the best mix of what is in the other Parties, while avoiding their unchristian policies.
Whereas there are Christians in other political parties, the difference with a Christian Party candidate and politician is that he or she will speak from an overtly Christian stand-point. They will have an electoral mandate to do so, as they have been elected to do so. They will not be ashamed to quote Jesus Christ or the apostle Paul as readily as others quote Charles Darwin, Karl Marx or Freud. For them, the Bible’s two thousand year history of practical wisdom will not be an embarrassment but will be brought to bear on public life by contributing the grace and compassion of the Gospel of Jesus Christ into the corrupt and incompetent standards which prevail at present. Even the Prime Minister David Cameron has labelled us as a broken society.
At the local council level the SCP will be a fresh face and a new voice to counter the current croneyism in Scotland’s councils. A Christian voice needs to be heard at local level as well as national level; for example, when some councillors wanted to relax the regulations on school children working in supermarkets on the Lord’s Day, a Christian voice contributed to exposing this exploitation of school children as cheap labour. It is a Christian voice, not simply Christians, which we need in public life. An SCP councillor ‘looks like’ a Christian who is not ashamed to mention specifically Christian issues in a debate and our candidate in Hamilton has done so on his publicity material, quoting from our Manifesto.
Is it wasted to vote for the SCP?
Not at all. The only wasted vote is the vote that is never cast, either because
1. you do not know the candidate: you can contact us to find out about your local candidate.
2. you are not on the Electoral Register: we can check this for you.
3. you do not know where the Polling Station is: we can find out for you.
4. or because the weather is bad and you decide not to vote on Polling Day: we can help here. Get in touch with us for help.
But I want to vote for my regular Party
No problem, when we explain how the voting system works. You can vote for the Scottish Christian Party and your regular Party.
If you vote for the Scottish Christian Party at number 1 in May 2012, it cannot be wasted because:
1. it is not wasted if we win, and
2. if we don’t win, then your vote will automatically transfer to your second choice, your usual Party . You don’t lose anything by putting 1 beside the SCP and your vote for the SCP is registered – the best of both worlds. You can make every vote count!
However if you number your choices the other way round, then the vote for the SCP may be ineffectual and few people will know our full support. Why not?
An example of what actually happens
You think you know already? Well, listen to this. Let us assume that 3000 people vote No. 2 for the SCP in your Ward in May 2012, and that 10 people vote No. 1 for the SCP. The 3000 votes will not count - even if they were 9000 votes they would not count. Why not? Because the SCP would be eliminated in the first round of counting because it had the lowest number of No. 1 votes. So even if 90% of your ward voted for the SCP as number 2, it would not count. We would be eliminated because of the 10 votes counted as No. 1, and people would think there was little support for the SCP “as they only got 10 votes”. Yes! That’s how it works - or rather, how it doesn’t work for new parties.
It is time for intelligent Christians to understand what is happening to their votes. Different elections count the vote differently, so please don’t simply assume that you know the voting system. Sometimes it will be first-past-the post; other times by the proportion of total votes cast; and other times as described here. Keep an eye on this website for advice on how best to vote in support of the Scottish Christian Party.
What about voting for more candidates?
Voting is a mixture of voting for some candidates and voting against other candidates. Find out how to maximise your voting potential here.
How do I vote for the Scottish Christian Party? What are the practicalities on the day?
How does repentance relate to voting?
Repentance means a change of mind, and Christians who are being sanctified by the Holy Spirit through the Word of God will change their mind on a regular basis, because we are not yet perfect. We are “work in progress”. The goodness of God leads to repentance Romans 2:4.
There are many Christians changing their mind about their political allegiance at present, and it seems a very reasonable thing to consider. We would like them to change their minds towards supporting the Scottish Christian Party.
The whole raison d’être of politics is to try to encourage people to change their voting choice. This is what electioneering is all about. However some Christians think it is wrong to call people to repentance, especially if it is about their political allegiance. The Bible calls everyone to repent about their whole life - about God, about Jesus Christ, about eternity and about life in general Act 17:30; Ex 13:37.
What is the STV system of voting?
The Scottish Local Council election on 3rd May 2012 was conducted using the voting system called the `Single Transferable Vote’ (STV). Electors were asked to rank the candidates on the ballot paper in their order of preference by putting a “1” in the voting box next to their first choice, “2” in the voting box next to their second choice, “3” in the voting box next to their third choice and so on. Electors could vote for as many or as few candidates as they wished. The SCP recommended using all the choices.
To be elected a candidate must reach a set amount of votes known as the “quota”, which is calculated according to the number of valid votes cast - so it varies from ward to ward and can be calculated only when the votes are counted. The votes are counted in stages. In the first stage only first preferences are counted. Anyone who reaches the quota is elected. Any votes received over the quota are not needed by the elected candidate and so the appropriate percentage of their second preference votes are transferred to the next candidate. If not enough candidates have then reached the quota, the candidate with the lowest number of votes is eliminated and the appropriate percentage all of their votes are passed to the next preference on the ballot papers. This process is repeated until three or four candidates have been elected.
At the May 2012 local council elections, votes were counted using an electronic counting system which produced rapid results and ensured complete accuracy and transparency in the calculation of the results.
Is it wise to vote for only one candidate in the STV system?
No. You want to make use of all your opportunities to vote.
If there will be three or four councillors in your Ward, and you have voted for only one councillor, then you have left other people to decide who the other two or three councillors will be! This means that you should prioritise at least as many as there are number of councillors to be elected and, even better, to rank in order the whole lot of them if you are able.
The Single Transferable Vote (STV) system is used in the May 2012 local council elections. You are allowed to vote by numbering your preferences 1-2-3… up to as many candidates are on the ballot paper.
The major parties want you to vote only for them and none of the other parties, as they don’t want to be seen to be increasing the vote of other parties. The SCP gives different advice, and here is why.
Some Christians think it is wrong to vote for more candidates than one can conscientiously endorse. This overlooks the fact that voting is a mixture of voting for preferred candidates and protesting against other candidates.
The voting process is similar to how parties have to behave after an inconclusive election result. Our current Westminster government is a coalition, not because either party supports the other party, but because of the necessity of a majority to govern. Politics is about getting things done; politics is the art of the possible. As Christians, we respect but do not necessarily support the winner or the government. The winner is often the result of an admixture of supporting votes and protest votes against other parties.
How to order your votes:
1. if you normally vote for another party, we advise you to vote for the SCP as number 1 and your usual party as number 2 rather than the other way round. This is explained here with examples.
2. But what about other candidates on the ballot paper?
3. You can vote for the candidates you want (in some cases there will be only one, and this is why the SCP exists), and you can vote against candidates you do not want.
4. You begin with the parties you want and you can stop at this stage if you wish. Many people stop here, but we suggest that this is a mistake.
5. If you do stop here, it simply means you lose any further participation in influencing the race to the finishing line. There are some parties or candidates that you do not want, and you can vote tactically by putting them at the bottom of the list. This requires filling in the remainder of the list in the order which puts the least wanted candidate at the bottom.
6. The easiest example is to consider a by-election, when only one candidate is being chosen in a Ward. A recent by-election in Inverness came down to a fight between the Lib Dems and the SNP. One may not want either of them to win, but one does have a preference. At this stage one is voting against the least preferred candidate. If one had voted for only two or three of the seven candidates, one’s ballot paper would be in the non-participating pile at the vital and final stage which decides who should win. In the event the Lib Dem candidate won by seven votes - and there were 342 ballot papers in the non-participating pile. If any eight of these 342 had voted for the losing candidate, the losing candidate would have been the winning candidate, which is why Donald’s election leaflet this time says “Your Vote can Swing It”.
7. As Christians we want to influence the outcome. We suggest that it may be a Christian obligation to vote for all candidates in a mixture of voting for your preferred candidates followed by voting against your non-preferred candidates so that the least preferred is at the bottom.
How do I vote for the Christian Party?
Some people want to know the basics - “What do I do on the day of the Election?” It is very simple, so don’t let the length of this answer put you off. This answer simply takes you through each stage in detail so that you know exactly what to do.
The method of voting changes with different types of election, and some political parties are more savvy than others how to make use of this. This is why the SNP trounced the other parties and achieved the seemingly impossible in the Scottish Parliamentary election on May 2011. Their majority was supposed to be prevented by the voting system, but just as accountants will find tax evading loopholes in legislation, so the SNP found the way to use the voting system to their advantage. It is important for Christians to know about the voting system.
By-elections have rules of their own and it is worth phoning your local council to find out what they are. Simply google the name of your local council to find its phone number, and ask for the Election Officer. When they answer, ask them about the voting system - it is their job to inform you, and you will find them very helpful.
Local council elections are not first-past-the-post, nor do they use proportional representation. This election requires you to put 1,2,3,4…beside the candidates of your choice; do not “put your cross by the Cross”. This is because you are voting for several councillors, usually three or four in your multi-member ward. If you vote for only one, “your favourite party”, you are missing out on your rights, and the savvy political parties will win the day by voting for the other two or three councillors, which you have ignored.
1. Your Poll Card is posted to your address in good time before the Election. Your Polling Station is named on it. Check that you know where it is.
2. On Thursday, (almost all elections are held on a Thursday), between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m., go to your Polling Station. It is useful to take your Poll card with you but it is not essential.
3. The savvy political parties are encouraging elderly people, working people and young people (who’s left?) to apply for a postal vote which allows you to vote in the comfort of your home, with time to work out what to do. This gets round the problem if the weather is bad, or you mislay your Poll card and cannot remember where the Polling Station is. If you want to vote by post, phone your Electoral Registration Office (ERO) or your local council who will give you the telephone number to arrange for this. It is quite a flexible system.
4. You will be given a piece of paper (the ballot paper) on which to vote. There will be a number of candidates on it. Because of the system of voting, many ballot papers will have two SNP and two Lib Dem candidates because they are hoping to squeeze out other parties in the multi-member wards and to flood them with as many candidates as they can. If there are four members, they want to obtain as many of them as possible. If they have the candidates, they would have four.
5. If you want to support the Scottish Christian Party, you should place number 1 beside your SCP candidate. Each will have Scottish Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship” along with their name. The Scottish Christian Party logo will also be there. If it an election for the Scottish Parliament or the Westminster Parliament you will “put your cross by the Cross”.
6. The reason why voting for the SCP as number 2 is not helpful is explained here, and how you can have two opportunities to make your vote count, and even more.
7. However, you may have no SCP candidate in your ward. If you have no candidate in your ward , you cannot vote for the SCP, obviously. So if you want a SCP candidate in your area, read about the process here. If you want a candidate you will need to let us know whom you would like to stand in your ward.
How do I get on to the electoral register or change my details?
Refer to the website www.aboutmyvote.co.uk, to find the telephone number of your local Electoral Registration Office (ERO). Phone this number 1. to check if you are on the register, 2. to find out your electoral number, 3. to be put on to the register if you are not on it, or 4. to change your details if you have moved house. There are deadlines to enable you to vote in each election, so the sooner you do this the better. The deadline is a few weeks before the election, for example, the deadline for the election on 3 May 2012 was Wednesday 18 April 2012.
Students can register at either or both of their home address and their university (term time) address. However, they must only vote once at any election.
If you think you may be away when the election takes place, you can apply for a postal vote. Postal votes are sent out earlier than the ballot and give you more time to consider for whom you will vote, so you may want to have a postal vote every time. You can download an application form from www.aboutmyvote.co.uk or obtain one from the Electoral Registration Office – call freephone 0800 980 0471. There are deadlines to apply for postal votes in each election, so the sooner you do this the better. For example, the deadline for applications for postal votes in the 3 May 2012 election was Wednesday 18 April at 5pm.
What is your Brother Andrew campaign?
It was developed in the Highlands and now we are rolling it out over the rest of Scotland.
Just as Andrew found his brother Peter and brought him to Jesus John 1:41-42, so we encourage each SCP supporter to find another person to be a supporter. The doubling effect will soon cover your area.
If everyone who voted for the Scottish Christian Party in 2007 found one other voter to vote for the Scottish Christian Party then you would have had a Christian Party MSP in Holyrood in 2011.
Christians missed this opportunity in 2011 and so there is no distinctly Christian MSP in the Scottish Parliament. Most Christians are still unaware of how to maximise their vote. In the 2012 local council elections, about 70% of our supporters voted for us 2, 3 or 4, but until they follow the other 30% and vote for us as number 1, we will not make the breakthrough.
So our Brother Andrew campaign continues apace, to raise awareness of the how to use the voting system to best advantage for the promotion of Christian solutions in public life. Our biggest problem is intelligent Christians - they “know it all” already and no-one can tell them what to do. They think they know the voting system in spite of the fact that it changes from election to election. They are too intelligent by half.
The Brother Andrew campaign resulted in 26 candidates standing in 10 councils across Scotland on 3rd May 2012. This is almost 1/3 of the 32 councils in Scotland.
With your help, we can do better than this.
Can anyone join the Scottish Christian Party?
1. Yes, if they subscribe to the aims of the Party – just like any other political party.
2. You do not need to join the party in order to support us. We value support from anyone, and you are free to attend our meetings.
Growing the Party
Our core vote in Scotland since 2009 has held up around 16,466 votes, but we have not yet made tangible contact with these voters except at the ballot box. If you know who they are, or you have not made contact with us, please get in touch.
If you want to know about the SCP in your area, click here for your regional contact.
Your nearest office is here.
If you want to organise interested Christians in your area, click here to send us an email or telephone 01463 796952.
To join the Scottish Christian Party: if you are a Christian, and you are able to sign the simple statement of faith on side two of the Membership Form, then you can become a member of the Scottish Christian Party when you have paid your subscription as set out on the Membership Form. A PayPal button and a form for subscription or donations is available for download at the top of the right hand margin. (If you have difficulty with any feature(s) required on the membership form, you can still submit your incomplete Membership Form to be put on our emailing list and kept in touch.)
The latest news is here.
Scottish Christian Party
14 Crawford Road
Email: George Tassie
Tel: 01698 536421
3. Surely the statement of faith is lowering the standard and meaning of being a Christian to include all those who calls themselves Christians?
a. It is not lowering any standards. The term Christian means different things to different people and it is important to use its biblical meaning. The Holy Spirit tells us in the Bible that the term Christian began in Antioch Act 11:26. It was used to describe someone who identified with Jesus Christ and Christianity. Whatever its origin, Christians were happy to adopt the name, possibly foretold in Isaiah 62:2; 65:15.
b. The Bible does not use the term Christian to describe someone who is born again, but someone who is a disciple of Christ. It is used in three places in the New Testament: Act 11:26; 26:28; 1Pe 4:16.
c. The scriptural usage for the term Christian is applied to someone who is a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ. Those under the preaching of the Gospel are made disciples by being baptised as disciples in the name of the Trinity Mat 28:18-20.
d. Jesus makes a distinction between His disciples and His true or genuine disciples Jn 8:30-32. Disciples, and people who say they are believers, need to be born again Jn 3:3,5 and become His genuine disciples.
e. What word will we use for someone who is baptised if it is not the word Christian? It is common to hear people say: You must be a Christian to be saved. This is not the biblical use of the word and it can mislead many baptised people into thinking that they are saved. If they mean: you must be born again, or you must believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour, in order to be saved, then say so.
f. The statement of faith ensures that it is not enough simply to call yourself a Christian; the Scottish Christian Party is a faith-based Party.
Can my small donation help?
Why call it a small donation? Possibly it is not. The Lord Jesus Christ taught us that the widow’s two mites was a relatively larger donation than easily affordable donations by richer people Mark 12:42-44.
However, “every little helps” and we exist on small donations. Since 2007 the Scottish Christian Party has had no large donors to the Party. The 2010 and the 2011 Elections were run on a shoe-string budget. People may think that we have a lot of money when they see our website and our campaign, but this is not so. The deposits were paid by candidates, and not by donors, and we hope that donors will come forward to help to repay the candidates’ deposits. Many organisations will not donate to political parties, and the Charity Commission’s regulations state: “A charity must not give support or funding to a political party, nor to a candidate or politician.”
We have received feedback that some people have not donated because they thought that there would be a big response to the financial appeal. This is not so. We have had very little response to financial appeals, and if we do not let you know this then this mistaken impression will continue to persist.
We can do some things without money, and there are some things we cannot do without money. Please consider giving a donation, however small, to the party. If you can give a small amount regularly, we will be very grateful.
So - yes, your donation helps. “Let every one give according as he purposes in his heart; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2Corinthians 9:7
How can I donate to the Scottish Christian Party?
You will find a PayPal button near the top of the right-hand margin. Click on this and it will give you options how you want to donate.
You do not need to have a PayPal account to make a donation. You can use your credit or debit card to donate - just click the PayPal Donate button and enter your details.
Those who do not feel confident about this can simply print out a Donation Form by clicking here.
We need people who are able to lead the fund-raising activities in local branches of the party. If anyone feels able to devote their God-given talents to this end we will be pleased to hear from you either by email or telephone 01463 796952.
Why do you not stand as Independents for local councils?
Some local councils have a preference for Independent councillors as many people think that party politics should be kept out of local politics.
It is true that one has a better chance of being elected as an Independent in some councils, and it is for this reason that some known party members stand as Independents.
However, Scottish Christian Party members are not power hungry to be mere councillors, but they are keen to be Christian councillors. Their aim is not to exercise power but for Christianity to be articulated in public life. Many politicians do not realise nor appreciate that as soon as they have political power that they have extra responsibilities before God to exercise it wisely and according to God’s will.
Ever since multi-member wards have been introduced at local council level, the system has favoured the bigger party machines rather than Independent candidates who find it difficult to cover the larger wards.
SCP councillors will be independents in effect until there are enough elected councillors to have a party basis. Even then, Christian conscience gives them a bulwark against the party machine and party whip system. Because of the introduction of webcasting of council meetings, there are some party councillors who are now controlled by text message from party headquarters during council debates. This is the central control of mindless and spineless local automatons that the Scottish Christian Party will oppose and expose. Local democracy is being crushed by know-it-all central party bureaucrats.
Party politics is here to stay for the forseeable future, and the SCP will resist the centralising and ungodly agenda being imposed on local councils by central party machines.
Why do we need Christian Party politicians?
We already have Christian politicians in other parties. We are thankful for them. However they are constrained by their Party whips so that they cannot speak from a specifically Christian point of view. Christians in different political parties sometimes meet for prayer and collective action, but the political parties are opposed to each other, and Jesus said that “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand” Mat 12:25. As the political parties are divided, can this procedure really work? The spiritual and moral declension in our country has occurred on their watch - a watch in which the Christians in these parties did not speak with a distinctly Christian voice, and still do not do so.
We need a distinctly Christian Voice in politics, and in the current climate only the Christian Party provides this.
It is manifest that the mantra of jobs, education, health, housing, hand-outs or government bail-outs is not producing a good public spirit in society, and that we need Christian common sense and fairness applied to modern politics. We need Christian grace practised and explained in public life, by politicians and on media chat shows.
Members of the public need politicians to whom they can take their Christian concerns. This point is well put in a letter to The Herald.
Some people think that the Alternative Vote will weaken or even break the power of the Party Whip system in Westminster because politicians will be more accountable to their electorate for their seat rather than to the Party Whip for preferment within the Party. However the Referendum on AV voted down the Alternative Vote.
Why should a Christian Party exist?
Some people think that Christian politicians should work through existing parties. So they ask: why do we need a Christian Party?
1. Many Christians find that they cannot vote for the major parties. If they are to be able to exercise the fundamental democratic right, they need a party that they can vote for. This is sufficient reason of the existence of a Christian party. Anyone who denies this right is ultimately denying Christians the right to vote, and they are demanding that they should compromise their principles and vote for a party that they cannot support.
2. Why should the existence of a party be determined by those who do not want the party? George Galloway in his victory speech at the Bradford by-election said that he hoped the Tory and Lib Dem parties went into perdition. Why should they pay any attention to him?
3. For every Christian politician, there are 10,000 voting Christians. These voting Christians should be given the opportunity to vote for a Christian Party, and not be ham-strung by the views of Christian politicians in main-stream parties, in which there may be no Christian politician representing their constituencty, but rather a politician with unchristian views.
4. If Christians want a political party, why should they not have it? If Christians feel that they need a Christian Party, why should other Christians say that they cannot have it? Why should Christians listen to such control-freakery?
5. A political party should not exist for its politicians but to serve the country. This is one reason why the Christian Party exists - to bring Christian service and standards back into public life.
Why does the country need the Christian Party?
2. The marginalising of Christian values in public life, and open hostility to the practice of Christianity, is detrimental to our society. Christianity made Britain Great, and the fragmentation of our society is because of the decline in practical Christianity. We challenge someone to mention one thing which unites British society at present - not even a common language unites us. This is even more true of the European Union. The ordinary British citizen is unable to follow what happens in Europe - they only feel the adverse effects of European laws made by faceless bureaucrats whose languages they do not even understand.
- 18 Apr 2012: For the London Olympics 2012, the organisers used Stonehenge as a British(?) symbol, which only re-inforces the absence of unity in our country.
3. Politics is the only legitimate way to change the laws of the land. We need a Christian Party with Christian politicians because the policies of the major parties are making it difficult for Christians to vote for them. All the major parties have indicated that they are willing to coerce the consciences of Christians. Many Christians feel disenfranchised because their conscience will not allow them to vote for such policies.
The sovereignty of Parliament to make laws is exalted over the sovereignty of God in order to contradict His moral law. Politicians are making unrighteous laws. “Woe to them that decree unrighteous decrees” Isaiah 10:1. Politicians don’t want to listen to the Bible: secular humanism rules their philosophy.
Here is an example showing how all the major parties are forcing the agenda to make Christians believe and say that homosexuality is a legitimate lifestyle. Only the Christian Party gives Christians the choice that they need at the Ballot Box.
Christian Lib Dem supporters look here:
Christian Labour supporters look here:
1. When he was Prime Minister Gordon Brown called for homosexual couples to be allowed to have civil partnership ceremonies inside Parliament.
2. Alan Johnson MP, as Secretary of State for Education, was interviewed by John Humphrys on the Today programme on 31/5/2007. At the end of his interview he was asked if faith schools should be allowed to teach that same sex relationships are wrong. He replied: “No. I don’t think that they should, actually.” Since then he became Home Secretary. Christians need to waken up to what is happening.
Christian Conservative supporters look here:
1. David Cameron backs same-sex ‘marriage’ and 2. he says the Church of England should accept ‘full equality’ for homosexuals. He wants the church to change the minds of middle England for him. 3. In June 2010 David Cameron became the first Tory Prime Minister to host a Downing Street reception for homosexual campaigners and celebrities. 4. He has apologized for the Tory’s former support for Clause 28.
- 7 Jul 2012: David Cameron’s message of support.
Christian SNP supporters look here:
1. The Scottish Government gave £215,000 to the Scottish Islamic Foundation (SIF), a group run by Osama Saeed, an SNP member who is to contest the Glasgow Central seat in the next Westminster election. Saeed has reportedly called for the reintroduction of the caliphate — a global Islamic religious and political system — and is also a passionate advocate of separate Islamic schools in Scotland.
2. Muslims cash in on Scots equality fund.
3. 5 May 2011: Alex Salmond supports homosexual redefining marriage.
What sort of Christian do you want to be? “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he” Proverbs 23:7. And as he votes in the privacy of the polling booth, so is he.
When you get to heaven, do you want it to be known that you voted for such policies?
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” 2Chronicles 7:14.
3. More and more Christians are becoming aware that the Christian faith is being marginalised. Download a report from the Christian Institute here.
Premier Christian Media has challenged the decision to refuse permission for its national station, Premier Christian Radio, to broadcast an advert calling on Christians to report any experience of Christian marginalisation in the workplace. The report is here.
It is now official - one cannot mention God at work without risking dismissal for “gross misconduct”. Read this alarming case here.
4. Removing Christianity from public life
- even from children’s books
5. Listen to this YouTube hustings on the different attitudes by Christians in different parties.
Is a Christian Party not dangerous?
It is true that some people think so. They include the former deputy leader of the Scottish Tories, Murdo Fraser, who is a Christian, and atheist columnist Lorraine Mann. Some people compare us to various spectres in their imagination. However, it is possible that some humanists view us as a danger to the atheist agenda.
However, we are not so uncharitable as to tar all atheists with the same brush. The atheist columnist Matthew Parris wrote an article (The Times 27/12/2008) entitled: “As an Atheist, I believe Africa needs God” in which he argues that only Christianity can give the motivation to help Africans escape their superstitions. He writes: “Education and training alone will not do. In Africa Christianity changes people’s hearts. It brings a spiritual transformation. The rebirth is real. The change is good. I used to avoid this truth.” He continues: “only the severest kind of secularist could see a mission hospital or school and say the world would be better without it.”
- Does a Christian Party lead to a theocracy?
What is a Christian policy?
This question is rather non-specific and can be meaningless. We do not try to answer such a question. Rather, the Christian Party changes the question to one that we can answer: “What is the Christian Party’s policy on such and such?”
We are not presuming nor claiming to give you “the Christian policy” on such and such. We are Christians with policies, not politicians with Christian policies. We believe it is more important to have the right type of politician before we consider policy. The national distrust of politicians is not because of their policies but because many politicians cannot keep their promises - the current debate is largely about politicians themselves, rather than policies alone.
Some people misunderstand and misrepresent the Christian Party as though we are claiming:
1. to represent all Christians. We have never claimed this, although as elected politicians we will be happy to represent any individual Christian, and any constituent for that matter.
2. that only our policies are Christian. Some policies are evidently Christian and other parties may share them.
3. that we believe that there are ‘Christian policies’ on everything under the sun.
It is one thing for politicians to misrepresent the Christian Party. We expect that. For Christians to do so manifests that the prejudice that it is native to the human heart needs to be mortified in them by the Holy Spirit. Intelligent people can be very prejudiced, because they think they can see the answer better than others. Prejudice can be dispelled simply by asking the relevant question of the relevant person, but many people are too lazy to do so, or too isolated to do so. Many are in love with their prejudices and, worse still, like to give vent to their prejudices, ignoring the Saviour’s warning: “every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment” Matthew 12:36. The Biblical answer to such prejudice is for Christians to acknowledge that they need one another’s gifts to balance the whole body of Christ - “the eye cannot say to the hand, I have no need of thee” 1Corinthians 12:21 - and that means talking to each other, which will dispel many prejudices.
It will help people to understand our raison d’être and our philosophy if we begin with basics.
We are a political party. We are not a church. We are a political party comprised of Christians, just as the Tory Party is a political party compromised of Tories. Not all Tories join the Tory Party, and not all Christians join the Christian Party. Not everyone who votes Tory is a Tory, and not everyone who votes Christian Party is a Christian. We have had atheists supporting and voting for us.
A Labour supporter does not join the Tory Party and so a non-Christian will not join the Christian Party.
The Christian Party believes that there are enough Christians to make a useful political party with good policies for the common good of the country. There are a number of single issue parties, such as the Greens, UKIP or the SNP. These parties are united around a single idea, but in order to gain power and influence they need to broaden their ideas across the political spectrum. However independence from the EU and from Westminster have a terminus; what happens to these parties once they achieve their aim? When Green issues become mainstream, what happens to this single issue party? The Christian Party is united around the idea that Jesus Christ is Lord. This idea is not going away any time soon, just as the Lord Jesus Christ does not intend retiring off this global field. “The field is the world” Matthew 13:38. “Behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the world” Matthew 28:20.
What is the cost of abandoning Christianity?
There is a serious spiritual cost to abandoning Christianity. There is also a social cost which follows this. The Old Testament prophets often called the nation back to God and highlighted the detrimental social effects of apostacy from the true worship of God.
This has not been costed until recent research revealed the enormous value of Christian action.
Matthew Parris has also documented the value of Christianity in Africa.
How have political parties failed the electorate?
The most common way is by Manifesto breaches. They wrote their own Manifestos, so when they do not keep them, we can truly say that they have failed us.
Referendum on Europe
1. Labour promised us a Referendum on Europe, and broke this promise. David Cameron also promised us one when Labour would not do so, but this promise has been kicked into the long grass, on the pretext that the moment had passed.
1. Prior to the General Election, David Cameron said that an increase in VAT was not fair. As from Jan 2011, VAT has been increased to 20%, its highest level ever.
2. Nigel Lawson on Tory ineptitude.
3. NHS: the Tories now tell us that their massive changes to the NHS in England was on pp. 45-47 of their Manifesto. However prior to the election David Cameron denied a top-down reform. What are we getting? A top-down reform without any consultation.
4. Education Maintenance Allowance David Cameron indicated that it was safe in Tory hands, but now it
Where do we begin?
1. The Lib Dems pledged not to raise students’ tuition fees. They have broken this pledge.
2. They said that they would not increase VAT. They have done so.
3. Danny Alexander’s flagship plan to cut fuel prices in rural areas is coming stuck on the rocks of Europe. His election pledge is taking ages to implement because of the European Union juggernaut; it demonstrates that we cannot manage our own affairs without going cap in hand to Brussels. The sooner we are rid of Brussels the better. As prices increase there is talk of a Rural fuel desert as filling stations disappear in rural Highlands.
4. After being full of promise they have achieved little. So much so that support for them has collapsed from 8% in May 2010 to 4% in January 2011. It is generally conceded that their vote was propped up by Conservatives in the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election in January 2011.
1. The Scottish Christian Party highlights the irresponsible failure of the SNP to say what will happen to the Christian Constitution of Scotland if the Treaty of Union 1707 is broken. The Scottish public deserves to know this before a Referendum on Scottish Independence; but the SNP has not addressed the question publicly far less provided any answers.
2. They failed to deliver the Inverness southern trunk road by-pass to relieve congestion in the centre of the capital of the Highlands, necessary for the development of the north and western Highlands and Islands for the coming renewable energy revolution.
3. They have not delivered on the A9 nor A96. Is this a central belt agenda? Where is their commitment to the whole of Scotland?
4. They have cut 3,000 teachers from our classroom.
5. The “Celtic tiger economies” which Alex Salmond held up for our admiration and imitation have failed miserably. Alex Salmond supported Fred Goodwin’s plan for Royal Bank of Scotland to take over ABN AMRO. Why should we follow this leader?
Holding Political Parties to account
The Scottish Christian Party will seek to hold governing parties to account by making use of their own Manifesto. Our 2011 Manifesto states:
“The public always feel betrayed when political parties abandon their Manifesto commitments once they are in government, with the excuse that circumstances have changed. This shows lack of foresight, irresponsibility regarding Manifesto pledges, disrespect to the voting public, and the hope that the issue will have blown over by the time of the next election. Governing Parties need to be held to account before the next election.
“The Scottish Christian Party will support debate on legislation to prevent Governing Parties introducing legislation contrary to the most recent Manifesto upon which they were elected.”
The electorate should not have to wait four or five years till the next Election to hold the government to account for their own pledges. This will lead to more realistic promises prior to elections. Evidently this does not apply to opposition parties which need the flexibility to modify their policies in response to the governing party.
Sanitised Manifesto launches
When the major parties publish their Manifestos, the sanitised version is presented at their press conferences, but the public need to know what the small print says.
Does a Christian Party lead to a theocracy?
Assertion and accusation are not proof, and we leave it to these accusers to try to prove their assertions. In the meantime we suggest that people should press these accusers to prove their point. As for the SCP, we consider this charge to be utter nonsense. People who make such an accusation must be very uncertain about the stability of our Parliamentary democracy, and you will be better not putting too much trust in these fearful people who think that Christian politicians are to be feared. Rather, people should be more concerned about the Muslim Parliament and that the Archbishop of Canterbury has suggested Sharia law is unavoidable in the UK. This is at least a real threat.
We live in a modern democracy, introduced and promoted by Oliver Cromwell, a Christian and the father of Parliamentary democracy, whose statue stands outside the Houses of Parliament, who promoted the doctrine of Christian toleration as few others have done. Rather than promoting a theocracy, he overturned the despotic Stuart Monarchy which believed in the divine right of kings (even to the extent of attacking their own citizens in the English Civil War, for which they were removed from the British throne, and the very thing that the UK intervened to prevent in Libya in 2011), and gave us accountable Parliamentary democracy.
Rather, the boot is on the other foot. Aggressive humanists with their Thought Police and political correctness are worse than a theocracy. They criminalise wrong thought and have created ‘hate crimes’. Christians call wrong thought ‘sin’, but Christians do not criminalise sin. Aggressive humanists are legislating for politically incorrect thinking to make it criminal behaviour. This is worse than a theocracy - Michael Portillo called it a secular theocracy.
Sin addresses itself to bad thoughts as well as bad words and actions. Sin, as such, is not a criminal offence in Christian society. Nor is it even a disciplinable offence in the Christian church in the modern sense of the word ‘discipline’, which is usually interpreted as punishment. Sin is disciplinable in the sense that disciples are disciplined into, (or taught), the paths of righteousness by the teaching of Scripture.
However humanists have no way to motivate sinners to keep criminal or civil law other than with the heavy stick of criminalising thoughts that they cannot tolerate - using political correctness and ‘diversity training’. The law makes a distinction between criminal and civil law, and neither of these define sin. Sin is breaking divine law, not breaking criminal nor civil law. Divine law has disappeared from many people’s reckoning so that the word sin is being removed from conversational English. It is a useful climate for scaremongering people who are frightened of Christianity.
How is freedom of speech under threat?
Equalities legislation has made it difficult to preach the Gospel on the street. If a homosexual is offended at anything that is said they may report it to the police who will investigate it. The street preacher may even be fined as happened recently in Glasgow, bringing shame upon Scotland, and the police did not even return private video film volunteered to them by the defence.
Similar incidents have taken place in England where the police use Section 5 of the Public Order Act to take up the complaints of homosexuals to prevent street preaching. The police even arrested a street preacher who had not even mentioned homosexuality, but they brought up the subject and after a conversation about his rights, the police arrested the street preacher for “a racially aggravated Section 5 Public Order offence”. So one cannot even discuss one’s rights with the police without being arrested. We are now in a police state.
Police in Lancashire have told the owner of a Christian café that he should stop displaying Bible verses on a TV screen because it is offensive and a crime. It seems that a customer complained to the police that it was homophobic.
Section 5, Public Order Act 1986 applies only in England and Wales, and it outlaws “insulting” conduct. The Christian Institute believes it is having a chilling effect on free speech and particularly Christian evangelism. Why are homosexuals the only group using the police in this manner? Is it because they are losing the war of words and wish to resort to strong arm tactics?
In England there is a growing realisation that the law needs to be changed.
1. The Government Coalition is promoting a Freedom Bill and the Christian Institute is campaigning for the word “insulting” to be removed from Section 5. This is supported by the civil rights group Justice and by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights. The police already have powers for dealing with breach of the peace, harassment and threatening and abusive behaviour. It is probable that Liberty also supports such changes.
2. The decision against the Christian hotel owners in Penzance is being challenged by the media and Judge Andrew Rutherford’s remarks at the trial that Christian views are “out of date” highlights the attitude of Britain’s judiciary which will only stoke up more homosexual campaigns. Already the Penzance business is suffering from an internet campaign to drive them out of business.
In the Moral Maze, Michael Portillo expressed his concern about the abuse of the law in this manner by a “secular theocracy”.
The Christian Institute has produced a thought crimes briefing outlining the creeping
effect this is having upon our society. They have also highlighted the topic from a European perspective.
It is ludicrous that being insulted should involve the police, but some intolerant groups of people do not think so and will involve the police. Although people can insult Christians as much as they please, but if these intolerant groups are insulted they will summon the police to do their harassment for them and possibly charge them.
Our civil and religious liberties were bought at a price many centuries ago, and legislators who are ignorant of this are stoking up trouble with their draconian and ill-thought legislation. Why should pressure groups spend their time, money and energy keeping the legislature in line who are being paid to do the job properly in the first place? This is why we need a Christian Party.
- 3 Feb 2012Free speech upheld in Inverness.
- 14 Feb 2012 Free speech upheld in Taunton but claim of harassment of Christian.
- 14 Feb 2012 Asked by the BBC’s Nicky Campbell whether he had any sympathy with Baroness Warsi’s comments, Alain de Botton, himself an atheist, said: “If you’d asked me three months ago, I would have said ‘no’. But I now understand, and I know that this could sound sort of paranoid, but, there is an organisation of very well-funded militant atheists who are systematically going through every area of British life and trying to persecute any voices that defend religion, and it starts with Thought for the Day and it goes on to school prayers and it extends right the way through British life, and it’s not done particularly nicely – it’s done with quite a lot of aggression and quite a lot of ad hominem attacks.”
- 13 Feb 2012 Secular group campaign to remove hospital chaplains.
Where are we with Equalities legislation?
Having abandoned God’s law, Britain now has different administrations of law competing with each other - Holyrood, Westminster and Brussels. One tangible example is Britain’s unequal ‘Equalities legislation’ where Christianity has been put at the bottom of the pecking order. “Some animals are more equal than others”, and current judicial opinion has ruled that Christian conscientious objection is lower down the pecking order than homosexual rights.
The Equalities and Human Rights Commission has an unequal agenda. It is being urged to adopt a strong-arm approach following the arrival of the Public Sector Equality Duty. The Thought Police have arrived - 27 years after 1984, but they are alive and well, living in Britain, and called the Equalities and Human Rights Commission. The latest outburst from the Sir Trevor Phillips, the head of the Commission, is undermining his credibility.
Listen to “The Report” by the BBC on 24/3/2011 for a discussion of the Penzance B&B case and the Christian foster parent case. The conclusion is that challenging the law in court is not enough but that we need to change the law at the political level.
This is why we need a Christian Party as there is not enough will among the other political parties to do so.
In the programme, Mike Judge of The Christian Institute was interviewed, as well as Andrea Williams of the Christian Legal Centre which is lobbying for a change in parliamentary law. The Bishop of Buckingham, Alan Wilson, said that these legal challenges demonstrated that the real arena for change is the parliamentary process.
- 25 Jan 2012: the courts are endangering religious freedom because the judiciary are giving it a lower priority than equality. A leading philosopher has claimed there was a “clear trend” of judges favouring equality and non-discrimination over religious freedom.
- 26 Feb 2012: a committee of MPs and peers has concluded that Britain is failing to protect the rights of Christians to follow their faith. It has also concluded that the rights of homosexuals take precedence over those of Christians in Britain.
- 11 Jun 2012: Denmark forces its national church to unite homosexual couples.
Is there discrimination against Christians?
There is a concerted effort by groups such as the British Humanist Association (BHA) to remove religion, and Christianity in particular, from public life. Its mission statement is to “promote a secular state”. According to this mission, the Christian constitution of the country is at stake - in other words, the BHA is on a revolutionary mission. Evidently it does not think that Britain is a secular state - indeed it is a Christian state - and the BHA is on a mission to change it. The BHA is a national charity and its website states: “The British Humanist Association is ... the largest organisation in the UK campaigning for an end to religious privilege ... , and for a secular state.”
Humanists do not give the same respect to others as Christianity does, and they do not respect religious rights. The BHA website gives prominence to a quotation from Maryam Namazie, a human rights activist: “Rights, equality and respect are for people, not religions or beliefs. Humanism for me is holding nothing sacred but the human being.” (Animal rights campaigners might take note of this ‘discrimination’ against animals.) “Rights ... and respect are ... not (for) religions.” Humanists don’t give respect to Christianity and they do not respect the Christian rights and freedoms bought at such great price by earlier generations. Christian morality is different from secular morality - and this quotation demonstrates it. This is the humanist truncated form of morality. Of course, their morality does not include the first four of the Ten Commandments - so don’t buy this eyewash that they have the same or a better morality than Christians. This exposes the sleight of hand within the much trumpeted secularist complaint that ‘religion has no monopoly on morality’ - not that Christianity has claimed this anyway. Secular morality is simply a different morality from Christian morality, and it doesn’t show respect for Christianity nor does it think that religious rights even exist. It is the natural outcome of one’s thinking that God does not exist.
Richard Dawkins thinks that to teach religion to children is child abuse. Where does this lead?
The interference with some Christians expressing their Christian faith in public has led to the creation of the Not Ashamed campaign.
Humanist lobbying is not confined to the UK. Threats to Christian freedom is not confined to countries like China, but “the land of the free” has its problems as well. In the USA a humanist lobby group is attempting to stop Christians in public life from participating publicly in Christian meetings on the basis that it is unconstitutional and is against the American separation of church and state. Hopefully this hyperzealous persecution by the humanists will overplay its hand and Americans will come to understand the spirit that motives humanism.
- destroying Christian businesses
- destroying Christian employability
- on-course to implement the Communist agenda as explained in The Naked Communist, W.Cleon Skousen, 1958.
#28 Eliminate prayer in schools on the grounds that it violates the principle of “separation of church and state”.
#40 discredit the family as an institution. Encourage promiscuity and easy divorce.
#17 Get control of the schools. Use them as transmission belts for socialism… and soften the curriculum. Get control of teacher associations.
#24 Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them “censorship” and a violation of free speech and free press.
#25 Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography in books, magazine, motion pictures and tv.
#26 present homo-sexuality, degeneracy, and promiscuity as “normal, natural, healthy”.
#20,#21 infiltrate the press. Gain control of key positions in radio, tv and motion pictures.
#27 infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with ‘social’ religion. Discredit the Bible.
- What should be the Christian response?
- Where are we with Equalities legislation?
- 27 Dec 2008: The atheist columnist Matthew Parris wrote an article in The Times 27/12/2008 entitled: “As an Atheist, I believe Africa needs God” in which he argues that only Christianity can give the motivation to help Africans escape their superstitions. He writes: “Education and training alone will not do. In Africa Christianity changes people’s hearts. It brings a spiritual transformation. The rebirth is real. The change is good. I used to avoid this truth.” He continues: “only the severest kind of secularist could see a mission hospital or school and say the world would be better without it.”
- 20 Nov 2011: Some officials are ‘out to get’ Christians
- 13 Feb 2012: Britain being overtaken by ‘militant secularists’, says Baroness Warsi.
- 26 Feb 2012: a committee of MPs and peers has concluded that Britain is failing to protect the rights of Christians to follow their faith. It has also concluded that the rights of homosexuals take precedence over those of Christians in Britain.
- 16 Mar 2012: the grand mufti of Saudi Arabia has declared that it is “necessary to destroy all the churches of the region.” The western response was limp.
- 17 Sep 2012: “Israeli children taught persecution principles.
- 20 Sep 2012: “Religious intolerance on the rise worldwide, says US report.
What are your views on human rights?
The aspirations of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) are good. However, just like the Bible, there are good and bad interpretations of the ECHR, depending upon the flavour of the month.
We need to distinguish human rights from civil rights: one cannot lose human rights but one may lose civil rights. Our Manifesto on Law and Home Affairs says: “We agree that the prison population should be treated with dignity as humans beings. However we also recognise that some crimes forfeit rights to a varying degree, such as freedom of movement, to chose one’s social relationships, to vote, etc. The right to make amends to victims and society, and to have assistance to reform, which includes access to Christian counselling, are basic human rights which should be always available and encouraged.”
We need to balance rights with responsibilities. For every right there is a corresponding responsibility. We need to balance one right against other rights. Evolutionists blur human rights and animal rights, which does not help clarity. Dumbing down of our society prevents people using and understanding our own language. Interpretation is a skill, and making laws requires a chess player’s brain to see the implications of changing laws. However, our law-makers are not chess players.
Until society stops social abortion, our society has decided human rights are relative. Our society simply changes its tick list from one generation to the next.
There is no problem with human rights. The problem is humans who change their minds about human rights and confuse them with other rights.
What are your views on social justice?
Social justice is so important that Jesus teaches that worship which does not result in Christians interested in social justice is vain, empty worship, which does not please God because it is devoid of proper content.
Isaiah 1:11-19 shows that true worship is not about outward forms but it requires repentance Isa 1:16, social justice Isa 1:17 and willing obedience to rectify wrongs Isa 1:19. Formal orthodox worship is not enough if it does not change hearts by way of love towards one’s neighbour - towards one’s family, one’s ecclesiastical family and society at large by way of social justice.
Malachi 2:13 shows that God will not notice our worship if we abuse our wives.
In Mark 7:7-13 Jesus teaches that if people will not honour their parents, they need not think that they are honouring God.
All the Old Testaments prophets taught social justice as the mark of effective religion. Its neglect was one of the reasons for the Old Testament captivity Zechariah 7:9-14. Failure to learn this lesson was one reason for 400 years of prophetic silence during the inter-testamentary period Mal 2:13; 4:6. Failure to treat the Messiah with social justice is one reason for 2000 years of divine rejection Mat 21:38-45.
One needs to distinguish this from the social Gospel which turns the Gospel into salvation by good works. Social justice is another way of saying that “faith without works is dead” James 2:20,26.
Christians need to learn this in their own fellowships, for one cannot expect social justice from Christians in society if they cannot exhibit it among themselves in their own congregations and churches. The worshipping church is to guide, encourage and empower Christians to act in society as salt and light.
Ever since the mid-19th century, there has been a disconnect of church and society. In Scotland voluntaryism took over from the Establishment Principle, and in England, Christians who objected to the Erastianism of the Church of England tended to opt the voluntary model of independent churches. However, whichever model Christians follow, they have still to address the fact that their worship of God must lead to social justice - faith must lead to good works, and prayer without repentance and a plan of action is empty words. We need prayer and action; action that needs prayer to be effective; action that will teach us and encourage us to pray in order to have God’s blessing on our work.
The lack of social justice in church and state is a manifestation of the ineffectiveness of Christianity in Britain today. We are ripening for further judgment if the Christian church will not awaken out of its sleep. “They all slumbered and slept” - including the five wise virgins Mat 25:5. “It is high time to awaken out of sleep” Romans 13:11.
It is time to repent and worship God properly.
What is your Manifesto for the Scottish Parliament in May 2011?
We have had an interactive method to our Manifesto development. We are listening to what people say. There is still opportunity for you to contribute your favourite ideas, although deadlines have passed for the current Manifesto. We appreciate your input. See here.
We have rolled out our Manifesto during the Election campaign by email notification of its appearance on this website. The reason for this is two-fold:
1. The primary reason is the opposition of unsympathetic media. The major media has not been kind to us: ignoring our letters and refusing us the oxygen of publicity. In 2007 our Manifesto was launched at a Press Conference. The media chose to misrepresent a few items and ignore the rest. As we do not have the resources to prevent this on this occasion, we will control the release of our Manifesto ideas.
2. We have a lot of ideas and we think you will want to hear about them individually. This will make it more interesting to you.
If you wish to be on the roll-out emailing list, please let us know here.
Where are your policies?
Our policies are in our Manifestos. The Manifestos cover different areas because of the different areas of responsibility of the Scottish Parliament (devolved matters), the Westminster Parliament (reserved matters) and the European Parliament. You may need to consult each of the Manifestos to see the full scope of our policy.
However, it is important to realise that the Lord is not looking for a policy to solve Britain’s needs, but the Lord is looking for “a man to stand in the gap for the land” Ezekiel 22:30. We want a Christian leader who can see the vision, speak to the situation and gather together “the children of Issachar, who were men that had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do” 1Chronicles 12:32.
What ideas do you have for electoral reform?
The Westminster and Holyrood governments have their own agenda for electoral reform. Currently the House of Lords is under review, largely to satisfy the Lib Dems. (Since the original post, this has been shelved through Tory backbench resistance.) The Scotland Bill, devolution and Scottish Independence are in the melting pot in Scotland. The SCP has its concerns about the SNP proposals. We believe in bi-cameral government but the Scottish Parliament is currently uni-cameral. We believe the debate should consider a revised House of Lords being a revising chamber for the Scottish Parliament and possibly a federal relationship between the various UK Parliaments. We are not convinced that a wholly elected House of Lords is the answer, and we believe that demonstrated expertise should be the hallmark of House of Lords membership.
We will support legislation to hold governments to their own Manifesto pledges. No party except the Scottish Christian Party is proposing a solution - because it is not in the interests of political parties to legislate to stop them promising the earth and delivering dust.
“The public always feel betrayed when political parties abandon their Manifesto commitments once they are in government, with the excuse that circumstances have changed. This shows lack of foresight, irresponsibility regarding Manifesto pledges and the hope that the issue will have blown over by the time of the next election. Governing Parties need to be held to account before the next election. The Scottish Christian Party will support debate on legislation to prevent Governing Parties introducing legislation contrary to the most recent Manifesto upon which they were elected.” SCP 2011 Holyrood Manifesto: Law and Home Affairs.
This will put a check upon irresponsible political promises just as we need to put a check upon bankers bonuses and the hand-out society we have become.
It is a common complaint from the public that they don’t hear from their politicians except at election time; but many people don’t want to hear from politicians between elections. The SCP believes that the disengagement of the public from the electoral process is because politicians are not seen to be sufficiently accountable to their electorate. Hustings need to be more frequent to make politicians more accountable and to improve the political process. Charities have AGMs, and shareholders expect to quiz their board on an annual basis. Politicians should be quizzed publicly on an annual basis, not simply stage-managed by party leaflets or, rather, to stop this back-stage management of those who are not even appear on the stage.
Politicians hold surgeries, but this is not enough. Prime Minister’s Questions takes place weekly. Constituents deserve to question their elected representatives more frequently. Some politicians are elected through the party machine, without the public having heard them debate in public.
Local press and broadcast media
The local press does not report adequately on local politicians. Letters pages are constrained, sometimes infrequent, and local journalists are more intent on their own career path than in seriously holding powerful politicians to account. Elected politicians have regular columns in local media, but minor parties rarely have the same privilege. With expenses for running their office, sitting politicians have many advantages over unelected challengers. Broadcast media favours sitting politicians and major parties. The SCP will investigate and promote means for greater scrutiny and accountability of elected politicians.
Smaller parties are being squeezed out at election hustings. Not only do they not appear on media hustings, but they are kept off the platform in many hustings. Further, if the major parties do not like the other parties, their candidates will pull out of hustings forcing them to be cancelled. This is a manipulating of the democratic process and manifests a fear of free speech, which is dangerously undemocratic.
Promoting new ideas
Political parties, like charities, rely upon donations. Unlike charities, we do not get the various privileges that charities get. This creates difficulties. People are familiar with the problems of large donations from powerful vested interests, to which there have been various solutions proposed. We do not believe in capping donations but we do believe in transparency of donations. However, when it comes to smaller donations, many charities can apply for grants from various public bodies, from which political parties are excluded. Thus small political parties are hindered at each end of the scale, by having no large donors and being unable to tap into the grant system. So, like churches, we have to stand on our own feet and work with a shoe-string budget.
The desire to promote smaller political parties at the time of the re-institution of the Scottish Parliament has somewhat withered because of the rise of the BNP, and smaller parties are being denied the oxygen of media exposure. The SNP used to complain, and still does, of the English bias of the BBC, but UKIP and the Greens also feel that their voices are not heard. The SCP is not alone in this regard. New political parties arise all the time, and die just as quickly because the system is stacked in favour of sitting MPs and parties with electoral success. The result is that capable people who are prepared to commit themselves to the political process are unable to contribute to public life, while others are elected on the party ticket through the party machine.
- 15 Nov 2012: the low turn-out for the election of the first police commissioners, on average 14%, the lowest in peacetime, shows among other things the difficulty of new faces to get their message across to the electorate. In spite of party politics, few people knew about the elections. Voter apathy has been blamed, as well as the timing of the election in November, but we identify the lack of interest in these new faces and serious journalism by local newspapers. We speak from the experience of a new political party. Journalists are interested in celebrities and things that will sell newspapers. The BBC referred to “dismal voter turnout”, but this is simply an observation and not the cause. The cause is more likely to be “dismal local journalism”.
What are your views on Scottish Independence?
Unlike other Unionist political parties, we do not pillory Scotland’s abilities. The Scottish Christian Party believes that Scotland is quite capable of standing on its own two feet, if we should chose to separate from the United Kingdom. Besides, the SCP thinks that it has a better vision for Scotland than the SNP.
The Scottish Christian Party is patriotic but not nationalistic. Nationalism carries the danger of hubris and xenophobia.
We are not opposed to an independent self-governing Scottish nation, but we are not convinced that the SNP is proposing this, nor that the SNP agenda is being pursued with Christian principles or motives. Rather, the silence about the consequences upon the Christian constitution of Scotland gives us little confidence that the constitution of Scotland separate from the UK will retain this Christian constitution.
We agree with the assessment of those who think that the May 2011 Holyrood election does not suggest that the Scottish electorate voted for Scottish independence, but rather that they could not support the main opposition parties with their inadequate and lack lustre leadership. This was demonstrated by the leaders of the main opposition parties announcing their intention to resign whenever the result of the election was known.
For Scotland to leave one Union (UK) in pursuit of national sovereignty, only to join another Union (EU), in which many commentators have argued that the ‘pooling’ of sovereignty in the EU is a loss of national sovereignty, seems disingenuous. Most of our laws are made in Europe and the Scottish Christian Party prefers to have appropriate legislation made closer to home by politicians whose language we can understand and whom we have some opportunity to question and lobby.
Independence is not on the agenda. Rather, the SNP is advocating separation from the United Kingdom. Under the SNP, Scotland will not be independent of Europe. Margo MacDonald, Independent MSP, was once an SNP member, and she believes Scotland should be completely independent of the UK and of Europe. This is at least consistent. The current SNP cannot claim that they are fighting for independence, but simply for separation from the UK and even its break up.
The SCP has now published its response to the Scottish government consultation.
Why did we not have a candidate in our area?
Because there was no Christian in your area who contacted the Scottish Christian Party to put their name on the ballot paper, and there were not enough people in your area prepared to donate £10 - once a year - for five years.
However, it does not have to be that way. You could have a candidate in your area for the next election.
You did have SCP candidates on your Regional ballot paper at the May 2011 Holyrood Election.
Many people want things to happen but they do not think how it is to be done. Politics is about getting things done. We can get some things done without money, and there are some things we cannot get done without money. Please consider giving a donation, however small, to the party. If you can give a small amount regularly, we will be very grateful.
How can we have a candidate?
If you do not have a candidate, we can help you to find one. Read about the process here.
Why do your election leaflets not explain your policies?
Election leaflets are not essays with reasons, but statements of positions. There is no room for adequate reasoning. Even our Manifestos do not have much room for reasoning.
Most of the leaflets of the main political parties simply state their manifesto policies. They give very few details of any substance about their candidate’s views, leaving the party machine to do the campaigning for the candidate. Some candidates of major parties are not heard explaining their views in public before they are elected into office by voters supporting their party machine.
The SCP would like to have more media coverage to explain our reasons. It is one of the deficiencies of our democracy that the media is interested only in the major parties and in celebrity figures. Many senior politicians complain that the media will not focus on the issues but on peripheral matters of more interest to the public.
The Scottish Christian Party website is the best source for the reasons for our policies. The website is fully searchable using the search box at the top of the right hand margin.
Why do you bring religion into politics?
We don’t. We bring Christianity into politics and into public life, and we will expose false religion whether it is in or out of politics, in or out of the institutional church.
The old taboo used to read: “You should not talk about religion, sex or politics in polite society.” It was an ungodly taboo, and society has long ago broken it. Sex and politics sell newspapers, and Christianity is mocked in the public media. So the time is long overdue that the last taboo is broken and that Christianity be brought into the public arena in order that our corrupt society becomes a polite society, learns the difference between true and false religion, and brings the glue of Christian grace and goodwill into public life.
Surely religion and politics do not mix?
Rather, the Scottish Christian Party thinks that the Gospel of God’s grace has got much to contribute to public life and the good of society. Our news stories are not mere records of what happens, but they seek to highlight how things could be different if Christian politicians would articulate a Christian solution. The Gospel is very practical because it leads to changed lives and it can change society. So the Lord Jesus commands the church to evangelise and make disciples of all ethnic groups and not simply individuals Mat 28:19.
We do not advocate Christian politics as the solution to all things, but we do advocate that Christianity should be applied at all levels of society - in the home, in schools, in churches, town councils and society at large through national politics. We encourage churches to get involved in local and national affairs, and individual Christians are encouraged to apply Christian principles in their workplace, which is being impeded by humanist legislation, which the main political parties have no interest in reforming.
This is why Jesus commissioned the apostle Paul “to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel” Act 9:15. The Christian church speaks to kings and nations as such, as well as to individuals.
The other opinion
However, it is true that, for some Christians, religion and their politics don’t mix.
Such Christians line up with atheists, who also think that religion and politics don’t mix. The British Humanist Association (BHA) wishes to remove religion, and Christianity in particular, from public life, including politics. Its mission statement is to “promote a secular state”. This shows that Britain is not yet a secular state - indeed it has a Christian constitution. It appears therefore that, de facto and de jure (in fact and in law), Christianity and politics are already mixed in Britain. However the Christian constitution of the country is at stake and under threat from groups such as the BHA (comprised of humanists who think that their claim to irreligion means that they are not religious), homosexual lobby groups, and indifferent political parties with humanist activists close to the centre of political power.
Richard Dawkins wants to go further and remove religion from private life - he claims that teaching religion to children is child abuse. This invades domestic life as well as public life.
Why is there a difference in opinion?
So why do some Christians not support the Scottish Christian Party? Some have religious reasons, and others have political reasons or a combination of both.
Among the religious reasons, some Christians quote Jesus saying “My kingdom is not of this world” John 18:36 as if this means that Christians should not be involved in politics. Rarely will you hear them quoting “the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ” Revelation 11:15. Some Christian denominations such as the Brethren believe that religion and politics don’t mix, even to the extent that they do not vote. Other Christians do not vote because they believe that politics is too corrupt to vote; for them the Scottish Christian Party gives the opportunity to vote for declared Christians. Some sects, such as the Jehovah Witnesses, think that one cannot vote for worldly governments and they await a future world government of which God approves.
Others simply do not like the SCP ‘brand’ of Christianity. Some have convinced themselves that they already know what ‘brand’ we are, and they do not like it. They compare us to the American religious right, to Irish sectarianism, or to current Christian values parties - none of which apply. This is a common response among particular groups of Christians. They do not take the time nor trouble to find out from the SCP website. That is their choice, just as some people chose not to listen to the Gospel, but we have often pointed out that if the Scottish Christian Party has got something wrong, then let more Christians join the Party and put us right. This dislike of other ‘brands’ of Christianity is a potent reason why there are so many Christian denominations in the world - and why some people think that a Christian Party cannot hold together - but it is no reason why these Christians cannot speak to one another and even act together in political action. The Scottish Christian Party offers itself as the executive arm of that concerted action. The more denominations on board the less denominational the SCP will be perceived to be. However, the day the SCP ceases to be a political party and becomes a worshipping church is the day that it begins to fall apart because of the religious factionalism native to the heart even of godly Christians. Such factionalism does not characterise every Christian, and some Christians joining together for political action may act as an example to the warring denominations and may promote the time when “the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ” Revelation 11:15.
Among the political reasons, some Christians don’t support the Scottish Christian Party because their politics are different from the purposes and aims of the Scottish Christian Party. Put simply - their politics are different. They don’t say that religion and politics don’t mix; they simply mix them differently. This manifests itself in various ways:
1. Whereas some Christian groups plainly believe that religion and politics don’t mix, among those who believe otherwise we have been told by ministers or church leaders that they will not advertise the Scottish Christian Party because of the Christians in their congregation who support other political parties. These church leaders do not usually say that religion and politics do not mix, but they commonly give this other reason. Presumably the reason is because these Christians will make enough trouble in the congregation that it is not worth the effort to advertise the Scottish Christian Party. For such trouble-makers, the SCP and their politics do not mix. This very common reason extends to many groups apart from churches - it is true of some businesses and Christian organisations. We have had leaflets displayed and advertised in secular businesses but refused by Christian organisations. One can understand secular businesses refusing them, although many of these will advertise magazines teaching irreligious doctrines, but how does one explain Christian organisations refusing them? Presumably the answer is to be found among these trouble-making Christians again, but let each organisation answer for itself, if it cares to do so.
2. If a Scottish Christian Party poster appears outside a church, other major parties will swamp the poster with their secular party posters. Who was responsible for this?
So it is clear that for some people, Christianity and their politics don’t mix; for others, the Scottish Christian Party and their politics don’t mix. Notice, it is not politics but their politics which do not mix - so you should challenge this thinking when you encounter it.
It used to be said that in polite conversation one should not mention ‘religion, sex or politics’. Now that the sexual taboo is well and truly blown away in public life, it is time to blow away the taboo on religion in public life. It has been bad politics for Christians to allow this taboo to prevail. Jesus said: “Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels” Mark 8:38 and “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven” Mat 10:32-33.
What is the SCP view on national religion?
1. The constitutional position in both Scotland and England is the national recognition of the Christian religion with the Church of Scotland and the Church of England as national churches. The Queen was crowned as a Christian monarch with the aim of defending the constitutional position of the Christian religion in the UK.
2. Since 2007, the SCP has repeatedly highlighted the lack of information from the SNP about the risk to the Christian constitution of Scotland if we should separate from the UK.
3. Our views on Christianity being taught in our schools.
4. The existence of the Scottish Christian Party is in pursuance of the Establishment Principle of religion.
5. We are concerned about the marginalising of Christianity in public life. One of our primary aims is to have a distinctly Christian Voice in public life.
6. We are a political party comprised of Christians. As such we hope to be of service to the institutional Church in Scotland, England, Wales and Ulster, to individual Christians, as well as to the population at large. Elected SCP officials will give a sympathetic ear to Christian concerns which is lacking in other Parties’ official positions. As such, we look upon the SCP as being in a position to assist the united action and reform of the Christian Church in Scotland.
7. This does not mean that we serve only Christians. As Christians, we are interested in everyone and seek “goodwill towards men”. The point is that we will be a Christian voice, articulating the concerns of Christians. The concerns of Christians are not selfish, but generous, considering the needs of all in due proportion to each other.
What is the Establishment Principle?
The Establishment Principle is that biblical principle which states that God is sovereign over secular and ecclesiastical affairs, and He has established a relationship between these two sovereign spheres in which the state and the church are to acknowledge each other as God-appointed, to mutually support and encourage each other, but not to interfere in each other’s God-given province.
This church-state relationship has had a rocky history in world affairs. The balance of power between each sphere has swayed backwards and forwards over the centuries. In England the relationship is Erastian (the state having ultimate authority), while in Scotland the correct balance, developed during the 16th century Reformation and 17th Covenanting period, has been altered in recent centuries by the 1843 Disruption and the growth of the Voluntary Principle (the American model) in which the church and state are considered to be so separate that the modern ungodly mantra “religion and politics don’t mix” prevails.
However in recent decades a new form of ‘establishment’ is growing up in Britain. The national churches in Scotland and England are in decline and being challenged by the multi-faith agenda in the name of multiculturalism. Hospital chaplaincies are slowly asserting their authority over other forms of Christianity, and now at the 2012 London Olympics a multi-faith team of chaplains will be on hand, while the Christian Lord’s Day is brushed aside by a swipe of the Chancellor’s hand.
Christians should take note of this new religious establishment being developed as the new “state religion” for our country. It is another form of Erastianism, promoted by the Erastian arrangement in England and the dogmatism of those Westminster politicians who do not understand the Establishment Principle.
Is it possible to get a distinctly Christian Voice into Holyrood?
Yes. Over 70% of people identified themselves as Christians in the last census in April 2001. In more recent times, on 23/9/2010 the Office for National Statistics published its largest social survey ever produced - The Integrated Household Survey. It identified as headline statistics that 71% of people in Great Britain stated their religion was Christianity, showing that this statistic has held up over the past ten years.
This shows that there are enough Christians in every Region of Scotland to vote for a distinctly Christian Voice in the Scottish Parliament. We need about 5-7% of the vote in any of the eight Regions of Scotland.
About 146,000 people voted in the Highlands and Islands Region in the May 2007 Scottish Parliament Election. How many of these are Christians who will vote for the Lordship of Christ over the nation? It seems, however, that only 2% of the 179,010 voting public can see the Vision in 2011, and this is down from 3.4% in 2007. Instead of the number increasing, it has decreased. Whatever the reason for this, it still does not alter the fact that it is possible to get a distinctly Christian Voice into the Scottish Parliament.
Further, there are more people than this who did not vote at all. Could it be that many of these non-voters, who felt that they could not support the mainline parties, will see that the Scottish Christian Party is the only Party bringing something new to the political arena? We continue to look to the Lord to move the hearts of these multitudes to vote for us.
For a fuller explanation of how you can have a Christian Voice in the Scottish Parliament click here.
- 69% of the UK are Christians according to the latest Office for National Statistics’ Integrated Household Survey in 2011. The atheist campaign to skew their figures saw an increase from 21 to 23% in those who said that they had no religion. The Survey confirmed last year’s figures that homosexuals do not compromise 10% of the population but only 1.5%. 94% of people said that they were heterosexual, and 4.3% declined to answer the question.
What are your results so far?
2. This makes the Christian Voice NUMBER NINE in voting strength in the UK, only six years since the launch of the Christian Party in 2004.
3. The Scottish Christian Party overtook TEN established Parties in our FIRST contesting the Highlands and Islands Region in the 2007 Scottish Parliamentary Election.
4. The Scottish Christian Party has been consistently THIRD in the Western Isles, ahead of the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats, with 12.5% of the vote.
5. On 30th July 2009, Jeff Green became the first Christian Party politician in the UK, when he was elected a Local Councillor in the picturesque town of Llandrindod Wells, in Wales. This was followed by a second by-election success on 2nd April 2010 when Martin Wiltshire was elected to the same council. History was made with the third successive win of a Christian Party candidate in less than a year, when in June 2010 Adam Bridgman was the third councillor to join Jeff Green and Martin Wiltshire on the town council of Llandrindod Wells. We must be doing something right.
6. The 2011 Scottish Parliament Election results are discussed here.
7. The 2012 Local Government Election results are discussed here.
What should be the SCP attitude to those who mock the efforts of the SCP?
We are to overcome evil with good Rom 12:21. We are not to return evil with evil, but rather with blessing 1Pe 3:9.
Notice the spirit of such people. “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he” Proverbs 23:7. 1. They have no difficulty in mis-calling the Lord’s people, both in their own minds and publicly. Mat 12:36. 2. They employ mockery, one of the devil’s most powerful tools for destroying souls. 3. They seek to denigrate and isolate the SCP.
Christians needs to learn to withstand mockery. It is not surprising that people want to avoid a Christian who is bearing a cross. After all, cross-bearers were being executed by their enemies. Avoidance of the cross has a long history in the Christian church - Paul warned the Galatians against trying to avoid the offence of the cross Gal 5:11.
Having determined the spirit of such people 1Jn 4:1, how can you help them? Paul’s last inspired epistle has a number of verses about how to teach those who oppose the truth - “The servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves” 2Tim 2:24-25; “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works” 2Tim 3:16-17; “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine” 2Tim 4:2 .
Will the SCP not divide into factions just as churches do?
It is possible. This is a feature of human nature and it is not confined to churches. All religions have the same problem, and so does politics. Political parties also divide – which is not surprising as it is common to the human condition. Our problem at present is not that we have too many Christian political parties but that we have too few. This is why we have a specifically Christian party – to highlight the absence of Christian principles in public life.
The Scottish Christian Party is well aware of the possibility of division, and it seeks to address this problem with the grace of the Gospel which is so patently absent from our society, as well as with the Scriptural methodology to deal with it.
It means that we are not perfect and you may discover things that are not to your liking. You will find the same in all political parties. You can criticise from the sidelines or you can join us to influence the debate. If you prefer to influence from the sidelines, then you cannot complain that the SCP is also on the sidelines of UK politics trying to influence public affairs. At least we have joined the political process as part of our Christian privilege to be salt and light to the world.
However the SCP is a political party and not a church. Churches have constitutions and doctrines which cannot be compromised. Political parties have manifestos which can changed according to the needs of the hour. Politics is the art of the possible and inherently it involves compromise.
One may balk at the first fence which frightens you, or one may say: “By my God assisting me I will overleap a wall” Psalm 18:29. The Psalmist trained his troops to overcome obstacles. You may not like some people in the SCP. The godly king David had some nasty characters in his army, but this did not inhibit the faithful band who followed him, because they saw that David was the Lord’s anointed. You may not like particular issues in the SCP; you are not alone. The solution is to see the vision for the advancement of Christ’s kingdom at all levels – local and national – in all spheres of life, from which politics is not excluded. “I will speak Thy Word to kings, and I will not be ashamed” Psalm 119:46.
Can voting for the Scottish Christian Party have any effect?
Yes. ¼ million people think so – look here.
The Scottish Christian Party influenced the Western Isles result at the 2005 General Election and led to “Yates of the Yard” knocking on 10 Downing Street. (“In that case, the Scottish Christian Party won more votes than the margin of the SNP victory, claiming credit for Labour’s loss. The victor in that contest, the same Angus MacNeil, made his name by sparking the cash-for-peerages probe” The Herald 10/4/2007).
In the 2007 Holyrood Election, the Scottish Christian Party could have been in a very influential position if a few more Christians in the Highlands and Islands had voted for us. See the story here. We have a significant influence in the Western Isles.
John Mason, SNP, former MP for Glasgow East from 2008 till 2010, acknowledged publicly at a Christian meeting in the Scottish Parliament on 26/2/2011 that the Scottish Christian Party helped him to win his Westminster seat in 2008 by supporting him and not standing against him, with a narrow and surprising majority over Labour in its third safest seat in Scotland, on a swing of more than 22%. Since then, John has been elected as an MSP for Glasgow Shettleston and has tabled a motion on homosexual partnerships because the topic was not being debated.
Dec 2011: It is difficult to prove the influence of a small political party. However, to be on the football field is much more influential than being a spectator shouting at the referee to get a new pair of glasses. The complete absence of promoting Christian doctrine in political life is a good baseline from which to measure things in a few years’ time. On the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Version of the Bible, David Cameron reaffirmed that the UK is a Christian country. This is a start, but whereas he described himself as a “committed” but only “vaguely practising” Christian, the Prime Minister admitted that he was “full of doubts” about big theological issues. He is not alone in this, and it is time that we had competent Christian teachers in public life, with good role models.
Within two weeks the Queen gave the most overtly Christian message in decades in her annual address on 25th December. The whole text is here. It is very different from some earlier ones in which the Christian message was more or less absent. The previous message in 2010 promoted the King James Version of the Bible and its 400th anniversary, and this one in 2011 is quite overtly Christian in tone - a departure from the earlier pandering to the multifaith movement. Just as multiculturalism has floundered in the political arena, so we must pray and work to expose the folly of the multifaith movement.
Influence on other parties
Since the existence of the Scottish Christian Party, the SNP has developed a Christian group and UKIP has formed a Christian Fellowship. A cross-party Christian fellowship exists in the Scottish Parliament.
The resignation of Lady Johnston from the Lib Dems began with the SCP Election leaflet in the May 2010 General Election.
Which organisations do you support?
The SCP supports organisations on a case by case basis, and to the degree that does not compromise Christian principles.
The SCP is a political party which exists to proclaim Christ’s Lordship, and to identify and promote Christian solutions through the political process. Organisations which support the same aim are likely to have our support, and we will expose unchristian solutions and competing claims to Christ’s Lordship. It is easier to name and expose sin rather than individuals and organisation, although it not so easy to convince the world of sin John 16:8.
We exist as a political party because we cannot conscientiously subscribe to the unchristian elements, ethos, policies and control in other political parties. Whereas we can support many of their policies, we expose their unchristian ones. We like to think that we have the best mix of what is in the other political parties, while avoiding their unchristian policies.
On the other hand, many organisations will not support us because we are a faith-based political party, and not simply a values-based party. The SCP statement of belief is biblically-based and can be found here.
We provide links to a growing list of useful resources and aids for Christians to use.
The following FAQs may help:
Our doctrinal basis.
We are a political party and not a church.
The SCP attitude to compromise.
What is the Christian Party attitude to churches and parachurch groups?
The Christian Party is not a church although it is the Christian church in action, just as many Christians get themselves involved in various parachurch groups.
Christians in the Christian Party have many doctrinal differences with each other, but we manifest our Christian spirit by working together for the advancement of Christ’s kingdom in the public and political realm. We may discuss these differences with each other, to teach each other “the way of God more perfectly” Act 18:26, but the Party does not make official decisions on these differences. In this regard, it is an example of how Christians can work together.
Our membership includes as many denominations as there are Christians willing to sign the Statement of Faith. Our candidates come from a variety of Christian denominations and fellowships. The Summer 2012 newsletter carried a report of the 2012 Scottish Local Council Election Results on page 3, which states: “Our candidates came from a cross-section of churches: Church of Scotland, Free Church of Scotland, Free Church Continuing, Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland, Associated Presbyterian Churches, independent Baptist Churches, Brethren Assembly, Scottish Episcopal Church, Assemblies of God, Apostolic Church, independent charismatic churches, and other independent fellowships. The SCP is not a church, but a political party.”
What is the SCP attitude to Christians in other Parties?
The current Scottish Christian Party policy is not to stand against another candidate who has a reasonable prospect of success in promoting the Christian agenda. In multi-member wards, the SCP will contest such an election alongside Christians in other parties.
We wish to encourage Christians in other parties. We recognise their difficulties in bringing Christianity to bear upon their party’s policies. It is this difficulty which necessitates the existence of the Scottish Christian Party.
The Scottish Christian Party will work with Christians in other parties. We are already doing so. We recognise that some of them may have difficulty working with us, but that will be because of their party managers. We do not wish to compromise these Christians but to complement them. We will be able to say what these Christians are not able nor allowed to say.
In the STV elections for local councils, the SCP puts up candidates in order to join with Christians in other parties in running multi-member wards, and to oppose candidates whom we do not want elected.
As the Christian voice grows in the Parliaments and local authorities, other parties will wish to ‘win back the Christian vote’ and they will allow their own Christian members and politicians to articulate the Gospel and the grace of the Gospel more openly. This is to everyone’s advantage.
We will talk with other Parties, but we will oppose them when they oppose Christian values. Thus we do not attack the Green agenda, but we attack the Green Party for supporting homosexual practices. At the same time, the Scottish Christian Party will oppose discrimination against homosexuals as we are to love our neighbour as ourselves.
Our Christian voice will be available for all Christians in Scotland.
23 Apr 2012 Christians in Politics (CIP) is an umbrella group for the Christian Socialist Movement (CSM), the Conservative Christian Fellowship (CCF) and the Liberal Democrat Christian Forum (LDCF), which want to encourage Christian involvement in politics through established political parties. However, CIP representatives have said that the logical effect of Christian Party success is a theocracy! Our response to this illogical reasoning is here. Our Christian charity does not hold it against them; but we will take our opportunities to instruct them more fully, if they are willing to hear Acts 18:26.
Are there not two Christian parties? What is the difference?
Several Christian parties have come and gone, mostly in England. The SCP is the only effective Christian Party in Scotland.
The Christian Peoples Alliance (CPA) tried to break into Scottish politics. See the previous answer. It had a total of 16 candidates standing throughout Scotland’s eight regions in the 2007 Scottish Parliament Election; the Scottish Christian Party had 73 candidates.
The CPA stood in the Highlands and Islands, but we know of no activity whatsoever by the CPA in this Region. Possibly the CPA hoped to pick up votes from the SCP campaign. This introduced confusion into people’s minds, and God is not the author of confusion 1Cor 14:33. The CPA refused an offer from the SCP to divide the eight Regions of Scotland so that we would not stand against each other at the 2007 Election.
In an article in The Herald on 13/3/2007, Teresa Smith, leader of the CPA, said about the SCP: “I can’t stress enough that we have nothing in common with these people.” The official website of atheist Professor Richard Dawkins sees fit to quote this article from The Herald.
During the 2007 Holyrood campaign, the media in the Scottish central belt gave the CPA more political credibility than the SCP. However, the SCP beat them soundly in every one of the eight Regions of Scotland. Our sister party in Wales, the Welsh Christian Party, also beat the CPA in all five Regions of Wales. Every other Party beat the CPA in four of the five Welsh Regions, and the CPA was second bottom in the fifth Region. The media’s assessment has been shown to be far off the mark.
Since this defeat, the CPA has changed its leadership and it has officially apologised to the SCP for the attitude during the last Scottish election. The Christian Party now has a better relationship with the CPA and we pooled our resources and fought together in the 2008 London assembly election as Christian Choice and supported Alan Craig the leader of the CPA in his bid for the London Mayoral election. The result was very similar to the Highlands and Islands, gaining almost 3% of the vote, positioning the Christian voice ahead of the other minor parties and just one step below electoral success. The Lord seems to say that we need perseverance and a further push. Since then we fought on a joint ticket in the European Parliament 2009 election where we got 1.6% with 249,493 votes.
In 2011 the Scottish Christian Party stood in all eight Regions of Scotland for the Scottish Parliament Election. The CPA stood five candidates in two Regions, whom the SCP did not actively oppose. The situation for the Scottish Parliament Election in 2011 is explained here.
The Scottish Election results are here. We are not aware of any activity by the CPA in Scotland since then.
Is the CPA a Roman Catholic Party?
We have no evidence that it is, and it describes itself as ecumenical.
We address this Frequently Asked Question because some people are
1. misrepresenting the CPA as a Roman Catholic Party;
2. misrepresenting the SCP in its relationship with the CPA; and
3. asking this question from the Scottish Christian Party, whereas it would be more logical for them to ask it of the CPA.
The Christian Peoples Alliance (CPA) is allied to the Christian Democratic Parties on Continental Europe which have many Roman Catholics in them and therefore reflect Roman Catholic social teaching. The CPA in Britain is a Christian values party and thus it has support from muslims as well as from Roman Catholics.
Thus it is not accurate to say that the CPA is a Roman Catholic Party, and the Scottish Christian Party does not describe it as such.
Our relationship with the CPA is to acknowledge that it is a political party supporting Christian values, although we have different policies from the CPA. These include:
1. the Scottish Christian Party is a faith-based party comprised of Christians; the CPA is a Christian values party.
2. the CPA supports the European Union, possibly because of its alliance with the Christian Democratic Parties on Continental Europe; the SCP does not.
3. the CPA is opposed to Trident; the SCP gives qualified support to a nuclear deterrent.
4. the CPA has had a muslim candidate in the past, although we are led to believe that this policy has changed, indicating that the CPA is beginning to move in the direction of being a faith-based party.
5. the SCP does not actively campaign against the CPA but we endeavour to work in harmony with it. The CPA requested the SCP to give the CPA opportunity in Mid Scotland and Fife Region and in Lothian Region to promote the Christian vote in the May 2011 Scottish Parliamentary election, which we did. In spite of our non-active presence, without a logo on the ballot paper, the Scottish Christian Party still got more votes than the CPA in each Region.
6. The CPA grew out of the Movement for Christian Democracy, which was established on an inclusive Christian basis, with Protestant and Roman Catholic involvement. (Wikipedia entry; accessed 25 Sep 2012).
What is the SCP attitude to compromise?
The Scottish Christian Party does not intend compromising the truth.
However we do not subscribe to the “No compromise – no surrender!” slogan, under which often hides prejudice and unchristian zeal for truth. There is a Christian zeal for the truth, and there is an unchristian zeal for the truth – and these need to be distinguished. It is possible to be zealously affected about the wrong thing Rom 10:2; Gal 4:17-18.
Politics is the art of the possible. Politics involves compromise - this is why some Christians do not like politics. This is why some people think that religion and politics do not mix.
What about the muslims?
Alex Salmond, First Minister, and leader of the SNP, wishes to permit muslim schools, and to extend to muslims the right to denominational education such as Roman Catholics and Jews enjoy.
Bashir Ahmad, SNP, was the first muslim elected to the Scottish Parliament. In his first BBC interview upon his election as an MSP, he was asked what he will try to accomplish for Scotland. He answered: “A school for muslims” and on further prompting, “Independence for Scotland.” 4/5/2007 BBC 1, 6.05 a.m.
The SNP has been the most successful party at courting the muslim vote in Scotland, although Labour has been doing so for years in England.
Salmond is concerned about the lack of progress towards muslim schools. The Times reports: “Other party leaders refused to help Muslim campaigners. Murdo Fraser, the deputy Scottish Tory leader, said Muslim schools could aggravate religious tensions which have grown in recent years. “The concern is that creating more faith schools is divisive and not in the interests of societal cohesion,” he said. A spokesman for Jack McConnell said the issue should remain for local councils to decide and that he would not intervene. A source close to Nicol Stephen, the Scottish Liberal Democrats leader, said the existing laws already allowed Muslim state schools to be created so long as they met acceptable standards.”
David Cameron for the Tories supports faith schools, but he warns: “The correct policy response on faith schools is to heed the words of David Bell, the chief inspector of schools, who expressed his concern over what is being taught in muslim schools.”
Along with choice comes the issues of standards, tolerance and tax-payers’ money.
When a muslim school in Scotland failed to come up to educational standards a few years ago, the response at the time was that tax-payers’ money should be used to bring it up to standard. With this recipe Christians could open a few schools with minimum funds, fail the standards, and then demand money to bring them up to standard.
Historically there was never much support for faith schools in Scotland. The Free Church of Scotland schools were sold out in 1872 in favour of integrated education, with promises from politicians to maintain the Christian ethos. These promises were forgotten and not kept. In the 20th century, Roman Catholic schools were tolerated but viewed as divisive. However, since the rise of the muslim vote in Britain, the mood has changed. The government has to balance the application of acceptable standards of education with the autonomy of faith communities to educate their children consistently with their own faith.
Abdul Dean is the muslim who was first on the CPA List for Glasgow Region. This illustrates the willingness of some muslims to support Christian values. It can also be seen in the fact that 80% of pupils at one Roman Catholic school, St Albert’s Primary, in Glasgow, were muslim. However, the issue of worship leads to divisiveness, and this is where most religious communities divide.
The Scottish Christian Party brings the Gospel of Jesus Christ to everyone, Christians, failed Christians, atheists, muslims and homosexuals, without discrimination. It is Christianity which built the United Kingdom into the tolerant society which received Jews and Huguenots in the 17th Century, Roman Catholics from Ireland in the 19th Century, and muslims in the 20th Century. The intolerance of the secular, humanist lobby which would abolish religion is a 21st Century evolutionary carbuncle on our society.
What hope does the Scottish Christian Party have of making any meaningful contribution to politics?
In the latter half of the 20th century we have seen two political parties begin and succeed in politics. The SNP made its breakthrough 40 years ago and now leads the Scottish Government in Holyrood. In Northern Ireland the DUP began 50 years ago and now governs in Ulster. The Scottish Christian Party intends to make a difference by God’s grace. Already we have some impact.
The reality is that Christian parties are here to stay for the foreseeable future. The Christian Peoples Alliance, which is mainly based in England, stands for Christian values. Although this seems to appeal to a wider group of people, it also allowed the CPA to have a muslim as its number one candidate in Glasgow at the Holyrood election in May 2007. Thus it was possible that the only MSP representing the CPA in Holyrood could have been a muslim! The Scottish Christian Party is comprised of Christians who proclaim Christ’s Lordship over the nations (Revelation 11:15). The CPA should not be the only choice for Christians; we have a clear and better alternative in the Scottish Christian Party. Why only Christians?
What is wrong with the Tories?
If anyone has to deal with the economic crisis, the Tories are best placed to do so. However, even with Lib Dem influence, the high-handed approach of their leader and our Prime Minister are manifest to see. Thankfully there are other Tories in the government with a more popular and sensitive touch.
There is more to dealing with this crisis than mere money and efficiency savings. There are human beings and social conscience. How do the Tories relate to the ordinary man? Surprising though it may appear, the Tories discourage applications for membership to their own party! If they cannot even respond to interested applicants at the grass-roots level, how can we expect them to cater for the needs of the population at large? Vested interests come to mind.
The Tories have an uneasy internal peace over Europe, but this was brokered by the unrecognised efforts of William Hague when he was leader of the party. David Cameron has picked the fruit ripened by the efforts of the intervening Tory leaders, and he was effectively chosen by a televised beauty parade when he was hardly known, his policies unknown, but he was telegenic and ‘looked the part’ for younger voters. This is the fruit of a generation of dumbing down British society. Although he has talked tough about Europe, David Cameron has already U-turned on his promised referendum.
He has made many a gaffe in public, over America and our ‘junior partner’ role in 1940, his tour in Pakistan, his travelling with businessmen trading in arms on his recent visit to Egypt, his choice of Andy Coulson as communications director, etc., all indicating that he is over-rated for the job of Prime Minister. The press is being kind on him; Gordon Brown would never have got away with this. His natural fall guy at the present is the discomfitted Nick Clegg, whose cohorts are learning the reality of government and that promises in opposition are easy but not cheap when you are called upon to honour them. The SNP are discovering the same in Holyrood, but not with the same disastrous consequences as the Lib Dems.
- Andy Coulson charged with perjury during his time when employed by David Cameron.
- Andy Coulson and Rebekah Brooks, a personal friend and neighbour of David Cameron, charged with phone hacking during their time as former editors with News of the World.
Solutions are being proposed for bankers, but what about politicians’ promises? No party except the Scottish Christian Party is proposing a solution - because it is not in the interests of political parties to legislate to stop them promising the earth and delivering dust. The SCP Manifesto for Holyrood 2011 states:
“The public always feel betrayed when political parties abandon their Manifesto commitments once they are in government, with the excuse that circumstances have changed. This shows lack of foresight, irresponsibility regarding Manifesto pledges and the hope that the issue will have blown over by the time of the next election. Governing Parties need to be held to account before the next election. The Scottish Christian Party will support debate on legislation to prevent Governing Parties introducing legislation contrary to the most recent Manifesto upon which they were elected.” SCP Manifesto: Law and Home Affairs.
This will put a check upon irresponsible political promises just as we need to put a check upon bankers bonuses and the hand-out society we have become. The SCP also believes that hustings need to be more frequent and accountable.
David Cameron doesn’t want to be tarred with the accusation of dithering laid against Tony Blair, and so the biggest problem with the Tories is that there are not enough checks upon their break-neck top-down reforms. The discredited Lib Dems and their brokered deal to stay the five year course is no check upon the Tories’ zeal. The Lib Dems like to claim that they are putting liberal brakes on Tory draconian cuts, but the beneficiaries will be the Tories and not the Lib Dems. The Lib Dems will claim the public are the beneficiaries. Not at all for Christians - if this unholy and illiberal alliance continues. 72% of the population claim to be Christian but both the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister want to force faith schools to teach that homosexuality is normal. When we emerge from our economic downturn, what sort of illiberal society will reap the benefits of the next boom?
The real check which needs to be put upon politicians is one which used to exist a few generations ago. This was the weekly reminder from the Christian pulpits of this land what are our obligations towards God and man, of our accountabilty to each, and the sobering check upon the natural greed and corruption in the human spirit which comes from listening to the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ Who went about doing good and teaching us to love God and our neighbour as ourselves. This will be very much more useful than listening to the immoralising propaganda and interference from the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Deuteronomy 17:19-20.
- 5 Mar 2012: The anomaly in Child Benefit created by Chancellor George Osborne has taken a long time to sink into his consciousness. Commentators saw the problem immediately it was announced, that a family with a single earner taking home more than £42,475 would lose child benefit, but a couple each earning slightly less than the top rate could together take home £80,000 and keep the benefit. Now the Government is reconsidering this unpopular tax measure, but it may be because modifying the tax has been shown to be “hugely popular”. The inability of George Osborne to see the effect of this measure, prior to announcing it, leaves us with little confidence in his competence and compassion. The “difficulty” in finding a solution is because the Tories cannot use the total family income because they intend changing the definition of marriage and they have abandoned the concept of the traditional family.
- 8 Apr 2012: George Osborne did not know enough about his salary to answer questions clearly whether it was in the 50p tax band. Can we have confidence in his handling of the economy?
- 11 Sep 2012: a new threat to David Cameron with the formation of the Conservative Voice group.
- 13 Sep 2012: Analysis of various threats to David Cameron’s leadership.
- 28 Nov 2012: it is now the Tories’ turn to copy the SNP. After the Scottish Tories resisted the minimum pricing of alcohol, English Tories are now proposing to follow suit.
Why do you call our Government hapless?
Its economic policy
There is no plan B. The Government just hopes plan A will work. A year after forming his government in May 2010, pressure is growing and urging them to think of plan B - particularly the IMF and the SNP who have extracted from the UK government the right for capital borrowing for the new Forth Road Bridge and a positive response to “flexibility” in economic strategy. Even Commons Treasury Committee chairman Andrew Tyrie, a senior Tory, is sceptical about Tory economic plans. His criticisms specify spending money on the Big Society, the Green strategy and Libya, all close to David Cameron’s heart.
Its stalled (or paused-till-after-the-May 2011-elections) NHS policy
A non-consultative top-down reform of the NHS does not leave us with the feeling that “the NHS is safe in our hands”. Many health professionals are up in arms at the direction of David Cameron’s policies. This has forced the government to put its proposals on hold - conveniently till after the May 2011 elections.
Danny the Axe-lander’s unexpected, non-consultative raid upon North Sea oil reminds us of a Highland clan raid upon the cattle of a neighbouring strath. The coalition Government has followed the morality of Gordon’s Brown repeated raids upon pension funds, utilities, or any other profitable venture that was rich for pickings. The Greens have followed the same mentality in suggesting a hotel tax possibly based on the number of bedrooms, reminding us of the ancient window tax - and it will probably be as disastrous as the window tax, particularly for the tourist trade in the Highlands and Islands.
Its foreign policy
David Cameron promised to end the interventionism of Tony Blair but not only does he preach interference in other countries, but the day after talking of imposing a no-fly zone over Libya, he announced cuts in our air capability. His non-consultative style announces policy and decisions, then modifies them. The biggest difficulty with David Cameron is one does not know what he will think from one month to another. This is largely because he didn’t tell us in the Tory manifesto and he is forming policy on the hoof, with the excuse that the economic crisis demands it. It is convenient for a Tory government to inherit a Labour economic mess as it has an obvious excuse for doing whatsoever it wants. Let the public therefore learn the importance of managing the economy correctly - or you will get draconian government trying to sort it out - without any proof that they know how to do it. In a democracy, the country gets the leaders it deserves.
David Cameron has pledged to use foreign aid as a lever to pressurise Africa into legalising homosexual practices. The Prime Minister‘s comments were made on 22 June 2011 as he hosted his second Downing Street reception for the homosexual community. “I think this is right morally because, as a rich country, we should be helping the poorest people in the world,” he said. “But it also has a spin-off benefit of giving us some moral authority in the world to talk to other leaders and governments about our relationship with them and what we expect from them.” Where are the Christian politicians speaking about this agenda? One MP questioned him about this in the Commons, but there is little public comment about it.
Our Prime Minister’s judgment
He has a high-handed approach to his own party. Within days of winning the General Election, he sprung a change on the constitution of the 1922 Committee when Tory MPs were vulnerable because of their desire to be loyal to their leadership after being out of government for so many years. During the Election campaign, he publicly dismissed a Tory prospective parliamentary candidate on air. Following Chris Grayling’s remarks in support of B&B owners having the right to refuse a double bed
to a homosexual couple, David Cameron chose to appoint Theresa May as Home Secretary in his new cabinet, rather than Grayling who held the position in the Shadow Cabinet. Grayling was not given any cabinet post, as had been predicted by some media commentators prior to the election. In November 2010, Grayling was given the Bigot of the Year for 2010 in the Stonewall Awards. Grayling’s remarks were made at an open meeting of the Centre for Policy Studies, a Conservative thinktank which claims that they prioritise the concepts of duty, family, liberty, and the rule of law.
- Chris Grayling was appointed Employment Minister and in the cabinet reshuffle in September 2012 he was promoted as Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, the first non-lawyer as Lord Chancellor since 1558. He has been credited with making major changes to Britain’s welfare system.
His judgment was called in question by his appointment of Andy Coulson as his director of communications, holding on to him until Coulson himself felt his position was no longer tenable, which leaves us wondering why Cameron could not see this. This lack of judgment continues to follow him in the News of the World phone hacking scandal.
- 24 May 2012: Another example is Cameron’s replacement of Vince Cable who was biased against the BSkyB takeover by Rupert Murdoch with Jeremy Hunt whom he knew was biased in favour of it.
- 31 May 2012: Question Time discussed the question: “Does the Leveson Inquiry call into question David Cameron’s personal judgment?” The net is closing upon the Prime Minister as the public and commentators are more open to questioning his judgment.
David Cameron’s chief speech writer is in a civil partnership with Matthew Parris who recommends the deletion of ‘marriage’ from legislation.
David Cameron’s gagging order on the Scottish Tories who once believed in Clause 28, which prevented the promotion of homosexuality in schools. Now the Scottish Tories are silenced and failing to give any lead against the proposal to legislate for homosexual marriage during the next Scottish Parliament. If this is passed, then primary school children will be taught that homosexual relationships are normal and possibly, through role play, to explore homosexual instincts.
- Cameron secures his acolyte in Scotland as Scottish leader.
His diplomatic blunders are too frequent, such as his comments during his trip to Pakistan; his calling Britain a junior partner to America in 1940; and when he travelled to Egypt to discuss the aftermath of the peaceful Facebook revolution, businessmen from eight defence firms who deal in weapons travelled with him.
After promising to end interventionism, the responsibility of government has forced him to change his mind to intervene in Libya. Like Tony Blair, he has siezed the opportunity to gain the centre of the world stage as a military leader. Dogmatically sure of his decision to impose a no-fly zone, he dismissed the reservations expressed against a no-fly zone and pressed the case at the UN Security Council. We are thankful that someone took the lead in the face of UN dithering, but it sits well with his dogmatic style, and his success ensures we will see more of it. It is par for his course and true to his type.
After playing catch-up in the Libyan crisis, David Cameron is playing catch-up again in the News of the World phone hacking scandal. His inability to get it right at the outset demonstrates that he does not have the personal judgment required for the office of Prime Minister, and it is only when events transpire that his zeal is cast on the side of public or Tory party opinion. He points out that to change one’s mind is not a sign of weakness but a sign of strength and that one is listening. The problem with the number of his U-turns is not that he (eventually) listens, but that he hasn’t thought it through in the first place. Nick Robinson commented: “he has looked under the spell of events rather than in control of them.”
Along with this lack of judgment and experience is his angry spirit. He manifested this at the despatch box ever since he became leader of the Opposition. His attitude to Gordon Brown as Prime Minister was astonishing and undignified. There is a BBC clipping of him and Gordon Brown walking together from the Commons to the Lords to listen to the Queen’s Speech. Gordon Brown makes more than one attempt to engage him in small talk but he studiously ignores him with his typically angry spirit.
- 10 May 2012: On this occasion strolling into the Queen’s Speech, David Cameron was more relaxed and chatted with Ed Miliband. Could he have read this website entry? or does he really think that Gordon Brown is so much worse than Miliband? Some judgment!
- 24 May 2012: A participant in Question Time said he tried to watch Prime Minister’s Questions every Wednesday when he can. He said that David Cameron seems to be getting angrier every week, and that he should go to an anger management course. David Cameron at the despatch box called Ed Balls, “the muttering idiot sitting opposite me”. The Speaker required him to withdraw the word ‘idiot’.
- 25 May 2012: On This Week, Alan Johnston referred to David Cameron’s lack of statesmanship and said that “he’s got a talent for scorn” which his backbenchers love, but the public don’t. Miranda Green, former adviser to Paddy Ashdown, and guest on This Week said that he has “a flair for enmity”. Michael Portillo dismissed David Cameron’s economic solution as double standards and the way to economic perdition in a hurry.
Our Deputy Prime Minister
Nick Clegg forgot that he was running the country when David Cameron was out of the country touring the Middle East. He could not even give a clear written answer to the question whether he would take over if David Cameron was incapacitated.
International development minister, Alan Duncan‘s sentiments in a video on Israeli security is withdrawn after pressure.
Why do you call our current Government high-handed?
Because of the attitude of its Leadership and the manner of its Government.
David Cameron’s high-handed attitude is illustrated in his personal remarks and attitudes. He publicly dismissed a Tory prospective parliamentary candidate on air, like dismissing a football manager when the team is on the field, without so much as inviting him for comment or explanation, in contrast to his patience over Liam Fox‘s case, and Oliver Letwin‘s case. His attitude has put a gagging order on the Scottish Tories. He stood in Downing Street and told President Mubarak that he had to go, while Barak Obama used more restrained language. His megaphone diplomacy is stamping his dogmatic streak upon his Government.
- David Cameron antagonises public sector workers by calling their strike “a damp squib”. This Prime Minister will not win hearts during the UK’s downturn. He is not leadership material for uniting a nation in austere times.
- Public dismissals and condemnation without proper process continues apace. Having treated ‘small fry’ in this careless manner the Government has bitten off more than it can chew in trying the same methodology with important public servants. The head of the UK Border Force now plans to lodge a claim for constructive dismissal, and will take the Home Office to an industrial tribunal.
- David Cameron joined the criticism of Sepp Blatter’s statement that “there is no racism” during football matches and that on-field disputes during football matches should be settled with a handshake . Blatter is prone to public gaffes, based upon his lax attitude to what others treat seriously, and he is now facing calls for his resignation as head of Fifa, football’s governing body. However Blatter was not saying that racist remarks should be settled with a handshake, which most commentators have said, simply because he was denying racism on the field. This was his mistake for which he apologized. However Blatter’s reminder that football is a game and of the value of a handshake has been overlooked although it is part of the solution. It has the merit of being speedy, inexpensive, public and gives an example to spectators. It is very much better than the Scottish Government’s ill-conceived legislation against sectarianism at football matches, and the Westminster hamfisted legislation attempting to deal with taking and giving offence. From our Prime Minister in Westminster to our First Minister in Holyrood we have dogmatism and unchristian solutions to the anger, violence and intolerance in our society, which manifests itself in a variety of ways and not simply on the football field or football terraces. We need leaders who can appeal to the people, and Blatter’s suggestion of a public handshake raises the importance and the role of public gestures of reconciliation. David Cameron began his leadership campaign with the suggestion of hugging a hoodie, which disguised his true spirit for a short time. There is some merit in appropriate hugging and although they have overstepped the bounds of decorum and personal rights, yet Benetton saw merit in using public kissing in its adverts. The Christian Gospel is about reconciliation with God through the Lord Jesus Christ, and we need more of the grace of God and forgiveness manifest in public life.
- In the coming crisis following the sovereign debt and banking credit crisis, we need a Prime Minister who can appeal to the nation, win the affection of the public, and lead us through these difficult times, but David Cameron is not that man. The poverty of his spirit manifested itself during the English city riots in 2011.
- 21 May 2012 Instead of calming his spirit, the Prime Minister is proposing to roll out his attitude as a ‘sack on the spot’ policy.
Cameron’s deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, is not far behind him. Clegg has asserted that Christian schools should teach that homosexuality is “normal and harmless”. He challenged David Cameron to say the same, or “lays down the law” to Cameron as The Independent put it, reading the spirit of the man. David Cameron obliged. This promotes religious coersion. Do these men understand the civil and religious liberties on which they trample? What can one expect from a Prime Minister whose knowledge of history extends to asserting that Britain was a ‘junior partner’ to the Americans in 1940!
- 18 Sep 2012: Following through on his dogmatic coercion of conscience, Nick Clegg will force his MPs to vote for redefining marriage. See other examples of coercion of conscience.
- 27 Aug 2010 Religious coersion in the US forcing abortion
- 10 Oct 2012: Boris Johnson cannot understand the fuss about redefining marriage: this makes him unfit him to comment on it as well as to be Prime Minister. If he cannot understand, it is time that he did. Boris’ logic.
David Cameron’s capacity for public criticism of those who are not able to answer back so publicly is being picked up by his Home Secretary, Theresa May. In a regular fashion she has got herself into the headlines with a list of dubious contributions. She is beginning to appear to be an unsafe pair of hands.
- 16 Aug 2011 Theresa May’s blame game about lack of visible leadership during the English city riots in 2011
- 4 Oct 2011 She upstaged the Tory party conference with her claim that an illegal immigrant avoided deportation because of his pet cat.
- 9 Nov 2011 Theresa May was quick to criticise the chief of the UK Border Force to the extent that he felt obliged to resign because his reputation had been destroyed in two days, he told a House of Commons Select Committee, largely by the Home Secretary’s actions.
- 19 Apr 2012 Theresa May has muddied the waters by jumping the gun about the deadline for the deportation of Abu Qatada, instead of waiting for its clear expiry. James Landell, the BBC correspondent, said it is adding to the sense of “a Government not quite in control of events”.
24 May 2012 Theresa is no prophetess. Listen to her prophecy to the Tory Party conference in 2010.
- 16 Oct 2012 At last, some good news and common sense from Theresa May, which is being hailed as courageous because it is the first time a home secretary has stepped in to block an extradition under the current treaty with the USA.
6 Jun 2011: Edwina Currie, a former Tory MP, thinks we should train children like dogs.
High-handed Government Policy
People are balking more and more at the non-consultative, top-down solutions to Britain’s credit problem. Just as governments wait for big media stories as opportunities to ‘bury bad news’, so a credit crunch is an opportunity to push through unpalatable ideological policies.
The problem with this is that it is done without consultation. For example, the large-scale NHS top-down change was unannounced in the Tory Manifesto. The excuse for the speed of change is David Cameron’s claim to have learned from Tony Blair’s mistake of delaying to act. This is no justification for lack of consultation on so big a project. It is as if the voices of caution must be drowned out under the pretext of stalling from indecisive action, but rather it is a manifestation of the high-handed attitude of David Cameron.
This NHS policy is considered to be a gamble. But the gamble does not stop here. The gambling spirit is seen also in the economic policy . The Confederation of British Industry says the government must have a plan B if something goes wrong. The government insists that there is no plan B - that this one must work. This is more dogmatism, more high-handed attitudes that ‘we know best’ and this is the only way to go.
The Big Society was possibly invented to correct the unjust spin of Margaret Thatcher’s statement that “there is no such thing as society”. The problem is that it sounds like Big Brother, and it is being imposed because David Cameron has a vision - but many people see it differently. They are suspicious that it is just another method of shrinking the size of the state. The Scottish Christian Party believes in small government also, but not by replacing it with Orwellian Big Society, especially when that society denies us our religious liberties of free speech.
The proposal for the selling of the forests owned by the Forestry Commission at least had the merit of being a consultation exercise. However, this was a non-solution to a non-problem - another manifestation of high-handedness. If this is what he means by his ‘green credentials’ one wonders if greenbacks control his thinking. Finally the Environment Secretary announced in the Commons: “We got this one wrong.” David Cameron has now appointed a new communications director, a director of strategy and an eight man policy unit.
Then there are the closure of public libraries. There is so little public consultation that he is stoking up trouble. The tone, rhetoric and style will have to change. We need a more Christian approach to engaging with the public to solve our debt mountain. The latest estimate is that 500,000 jobs will be lost by the course we are currently on. The private sector is not yet properly incentivised to take up the slack. Goodwill is at a premium and will only get worse. We need a more statesmanlike approach to dealing with the public. Thankfully there are others in the government with a more popular and sensitive touch.
Budget surprise bounced on business
The sudden taxing of North Sea oil caught the industry by surprise. They are justifiably annoyed that they were not consulted and the backlash came quickly. Within days Statoil, Norway’s biggest energy producer, announced a moratorium on its £3bn investment programme in the region, rapidly followed by Scottish Gas owner Centrica which put its multimillion-pound North Sea investment programme on hold following the Government’s £10 billion windfall tax raid, announced in the Budget.
This time, criticism is focusing on Lib Dem Treasury Secretary Danny Alexander who, it was claimed, was “almost bragging” that the plan was his idea. So Tory, or Lib Dem, we have the same spirit of “we know best” in this top-down cut-up of our country, whether it is students, the health service or business. Yet again, the Lib Dems are carrying the can for the ConDem Alliance cuts, and this time it seems that it is deservedly so.
It is thought that this policy will cost 15,000 jobs in the north east. Tom Hunter has pointed out that this short-term fix will be undone by the uncertainty caused in the minds of oil companies which are less likely to allocate capital expenditure to Scotland in view of this arbitrary government decision. This decision will do lasting damage.
Ruthless and tribal
Vince Cable, the business secretary in coalition with the Tories, said after the AV Referendum result: “The basic reason for going into coalition wasn’t electoral reform, but the economic crisis. Some of us never had many illusions about the Conservatives, but they have emerged as ruthless, calculating and thoroughly tribal.”
French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, got so fed up with David Cameron’s “posturing, hectoring and know-it-all ways”, that he told him to shut up about the euro.
Cameron is becoming so self-confident that he feels he can insult Ed Miliband, M.P., the leader of the Opposition: “There is a group of people on this side of the House who want some rebalancing, a group of people who want a lot of rebalancing, and a complete mug who wants no rebalancing at all.” Worse still, the Tories benches cheered this to the rafters, just as they applauded his redefining of Conservatism.
Why do you keep talking about corruption?
Because it happens to be one of the main issues of the day, as the growing length of this FAQ demonstrates. We speak on the issues of the day.
Since this FAQ commenced on 27/5/2011 there have been more and more revelations in public life, so that it is almost unnecessary to keep documenting what is now obvious to most people. Many commentators are now questioning the corruption in public life. On 24/7/2012 Lord Turner, chairman of the Financial Services Authority, launched a hard-hitting attack against the “cynical greed” of City traders in a wide-ranging speech which called for a change in the culture at the top of banks.
As the love of money is at the root of much evil, this is one area which can be measured, but there is a general spiritual corruption which politicians cannot solve. We need a distinctly Christian voice in public life to articulate the life-transforming effect of the grace of God in people’s attitudes. Some people reading this will think that they do not need it - this illustrates the self-deception native to the human spirit. “The heart of man is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9. It needs the radical cure effected by the Lord Jesus Christ.
Our public institutions are collapsing through endemic corruption and the question arises why should we trust our institutions? Trust needs to be based upon evidence, but the evidence undermines trust.
- 5 Jul 2012: Two panelists on Question Time tonight tried to define trust. They failed miserably, briefly arguing among themselves whether it was related to morals or religion. Trust is central to Christian theology and it is a sign of our times that people don’t know what trust is. This leads to misplaced trust and eventual disappointment. It is time we had more Christian Voices in public life.
Institutional failures and corruption arise because of people promoted beyond their competency and compassion. Many managers are competent, but they are ruthless without compassion. Many are compassionate Yes-men, promoted for their servility but promoted beyond their competency. There is an unholy mixture of corruption and incompetence, and these are difficult to distinguish, so that corruption can masquerade as incompetence, which in turn hides behind human frailty and collective responsibility. It gets away with this because few people have the energy and resources to identify the source of the problem. Few areas of public life escape from this censure.
- 29 Feb 2012: The Commission on Dignity recommends more emphasis on the quality of compassion in carers of the elderly. Rather, we need it through the whole work force and throughout our society. It is not an optional extra confined to certain professions. “Members should have the same care one for another” 1Cor 12:25. “Thanks be to God, which put the same earnest care into the heart of Titus for you” 2Cor 8:16. We should be thankful for the real carers in society, who don’t need to be paid to show care. “I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state” Php 2:20.
- 2 April 2012: Incompetence - the failure of the UK Government to consult with industry about the petrol crisis, so that government minister Francis Maude advised people “to top up their petrol tank” just when the country’s 6,000 forecourts were at their lowest level of petrol stocks, leading to a petrol crisis.
- 5 Jul 2012: speaking on the Libor banking scandal, Michael Portillo on This Week tonight said that the failure of banks is 30% morality and 70% incompetence. The debate suggested that the problem is too much male testosterone and that more women in investment banks would help. This is a mistaken diagnosis and will not be a solution. Even anti-Americanism featured, with reference to Bob Diamond’s background. We do not need scapegoats but confession of wrong-doing and repentance - a change of mind and an acknowledgement that ignoring God leads to loss of conscience and a bias in favour of the interests of one’s own institution.
- 7 Nov 2012: What is crisis management? It is that increasingly common form of incompetent mismanagement in which managers hide their problems until it reaches the point when they can hide them no longer. Then they use the crisis to emotionally appeal for help to extract them from their dilemma. It was seen in the collapse of Northern Rock, then of the Royal Bank of Scotland. It continues in other areas of life, and it can be illustrated even by football clubs. After the recent demise of Rangers Football Club, Hearts Football Club has appealed to fans for funds, saying that the club might not survive until the end of the month after receiving a winding-up order over a tax bill of almost £450,000. Are these short-sighted managers unable to foresee and calculate for such simple and foreseeable matters such as tax? The Gospel teaches us to look ahead and plan ahead, but we have a generation of short-sighted leaders who are chasing visions and trusting empty promises. This is the price people pay for trusting those with no Christian common sense. It is used in politics, and it is used also by mainline charities who appeal for funds because of the credit crisis, asking for emergency funding to see them through the hard times. On the one hand we are told that charities and social giving cannot fill the gap for on-going funding, and this is used to justify government taxation and intervention; but now in this credit crisis both David Cameron’s appeal to the Big Society and the general appeal to the public for charitable giving are being exposed as last ditch attempts to rescue incompetent managers. The inability of the private sector to fill quickly enough the gap left by public sector incompetence is manifesting that it is not only politicians who are short-sighted. We need some long-sighted Christian common sense, which measures life not in terms of the next electoral cycle but in terms of eternity and which creates a proper sense of accountability.
- 15 Nov 2012: Even NASA is manifesting incompetence in its security policy.
UK society is becoming more and more corrupt because of the lack of the sense of sin and personal accountability. There are not enough policemen, lawyers, courts, judges and prisons to keep on top of criminal activity, and the criminals know this. Slowly the general public are wakening up to this fact, thus even the general public fiddle their expenses and their taxes, break the speed limit and a multitude of other things, large and small, as they think that “they that work wickedness get off with it” Malachi 3:15. Our society needs to be told that however much they may escape punishment from men, they will not escape God’s righteous judgment. They need a change of heart and a Christian conscience.
Our unchristian society means that dishonesty is rising, and it is now so common that we can no longer police it. To handle it, we are developing a surveillance society on our streets, and in the workplace. On the street we have CCTV cameras, and in the workplace we have a battle between whistleblowers and employers, cameras being used on each side of the divide. Trial by media is a fact of modern life. A Stasi-type society is developing and if we do not promote Christian values and tolerance soon, the tension will rise to breaking point. The blame-free climate for medical audit sits uneasily beside a growing whistle-blowing culture. Evidence is emerging that NHS trusts are restricting the ability of staff to raise the alarm about bad practices, to such an extent that the General Medical Council (GMC) has issued guidance on the matter. At the other end of the scale is the incompetent school management which permitted a paedophile to target his school pupils for years.
As Christian morality declines, society is becoming confused about what is or is not acceptable speech and behaviour. It is the price we pay for no personal sense of accounability to God. Humanists cannot supply a motivation for their morality, nor can politicians. Thus they resort to the force of law and punishment. But we have too few police - so the government is turning to ‘self-policing’ by colleagues, neighbours, cameras, private detectives, etc. The problem with this is that it breaks down social cohesion and creates distrust and resentment. It is better to have the grace of Christianity as the oil which makes the wheels turn smoothly. Trust is at the centre of the Christian Gospel - it begins with trusting the Lord Jesus Christ to show us the way to God and the Father’s house John 14:2,6, which leads to a Christian understanding of trust and distrust.
We used to be told it was poor housing, lack of education, inadequate job opportunities, etc. The excuses are running out. Some people with the best jobs, huge houses and biggest salaries have brought the country to financial ruin. Our society is corrupt at most levels, and it needs desperately the grace of the Christian Gospel.
White collar crime can be more costly and devastating than the activity of petty criminals. The credit crunch demonstrates this.
Selling of sub-prime mortgages wrapped up in financial instruments that even bankers did not understand betrays a remarkable lack of conscience about who will be left holding the debt.
Banking incompetence: bankers without a social conscience became salesmen with little understanding of their products, and abandoned their primary skills of assessing risk in order to make more money. Along with this they told plain lies at share holders’ meetings.
- 12 Dec 2011: The FSA admitted that their staff lacked the skills to monitor the Royal Bank of Scotland.
- Dec 2011 PMQ’s: Banks threaten receivership to small businesses to force their hand.
- 9 Jan 2011: More than £31bn of taxpayers’ money has been wasted across government departments in the past two years, according to an Audit by The Times. Civil servants lacked the skills to negotiate better contracts with the private sector. An analysis of more than 70 reports from the National Audit Office (NAO) and parliamentary select committees found at least £31.8bn of wasteful overspending since 2009 in areas ranging from welfare and capital projects to farm payments.
- 27 Jun 2012: Barclays fined for attempts to manipulate Libor rates. A group of its traders lied about what it was costing the bank to borrow. The FSA imposed a £290m fine, the largest of its kind to date. This follows on Barclays’ aggressive tax avoidance schemes, for which George Osborne drafted new law for corporate tax dodgers in Feb 2012, about which Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond complained that the Treasury move inflicted ‘unnecessary damage’ on the bank’s reputation. It has been suggested that Barclays is not alone, and on Newsnight it was described as “the most corrosive failure” in recent times. These activities deserve criminal proceedings against banking leaders, just as national and military leaders are subject to international courts of justice for criminal behaviour. “Your word is your bond” is distant history - but God’s Word is not bound 2Tim 2:9 in spite of people’s ignoring of it. Those who demonstrate their lack of conscience before God and man need to be reminded by Christian voices in public life that they will indeed be called to account for their behaviour and hardened conscience which ruins other people’s lives.
- 29 Jun 2012: The Governor of the Bank of England acknowledges the banking culture must change, saying that customers have received “shoddy” treatment with deceit, fiddling and mis-selling of products. It appears that traders have little respect for regulators, who are viewed as inefficient and bordering on incompetence; in this culture traders have speculated and pushed beyond the boundaries. Barclays’ boss Bob Diamond has decided not to resign. It seems that he needs the job, the prestige and the pay. Does he not have another job to go to?
- 3 Jul 2012: Eventually Bob Diamond gets the message and resigns. What has he negotiated meanwhile? However, we still have to ask if a righteous man could have operated in such an environment. He would have been swept away as a wimp who does not know how to play the game. This ungodly culture needs the Gospel of Jesus Christ to put it right. The England manager has said that his decision not to pick David Beckham for his London 2012 Olympic Team GB squad was made purely for football reasons. Really? Then he needs to learn that the Olympics is about more than sport, and this seems to be an own goal. Celebrities are a large part of modern sport and the media pack are after him for they need celebrities. We have come a long way from the Christian spirit of Eric Liddell.
- 17 Jul 2012: Sir Mervyn King, the Governor of the Bank of England, told a Select Committee that the Barclays board appeared to be in a state of denial about the Libor rate scandal.
- 17 Jul 2012: HSBC provided a conduit for “drug kingpins and rogue nations”, according to a US Senate committee investigating money laundering claims at the bank.
- 17 Jul 2012: Michael Portillo calls them “spivs and charlatans” who must be replaced.
- 26 Jul 2012: Nomura’s top management have resigned en masse following the bank’s involvement in a damaging domestic insider trading scandal in Japan. What does this say about the claim that we must hold on to our top talent in banking? There are more essential parameters.
- 26 Jul2012: Wall Street Journal compares Nomura and Barclays. “As at Barclays too, misbehavior at Nomura has festered for years.”
- 9 Oct Jul2012: International Monetary Fund (IMF) warning rubbished as of little worth.
Fat cats’ pay: the shareholders’ revolt against pay rises for top executives began to develop momentum during 2012. Aviva, Trinity Mirror and AstraZeneca each faced shareholder rebellions, after which each announced the departure of their chief executives.
- 13 Jun 2012: shareholders voted down a 60% pay rise for the chief executive of the largest advertising agency in the world - a pay rise on top of last year’s massive hike. Ahead of the AGM, Sir Martin had defended his pay deal, which comprises a £1.3m salary, a £2m annual bonus and £3m in deferred shares and other benefits. However, in his case, at least he had founded the company in 1985 and had not simply walked into a high paid job.
The taxman joins the club:
The Public Accounts Committee has criticised “cosy” deals between HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and big business. It said large firms got favourable treatment and there was a lack of public accountability over how deals are done. This cosy treating of big business contrasts with its dealing with the public. The Prime Minister’s official spokesman rejected claims of “unduly cosy” relationships - although how he should know is difficult to understand. “They don’t get preferential treatment. HMRC support all taxpayers even-handedly,” he said. This is not the experience of many individuals.
Lord Sugar’s The Apprentice programme demonstrates that business is primarily about making money, and only secondarily does it seek to benefit the consumer or society. Benefit to the customer is promoted only because it helps business. This same morality extends to international relationships and foreign policy. Business principles drive the European Union agenda, to the detriment of the social needs of ordinary people. The desire to alter British Time to Central European Time is purely business-driven, ignoring the social consequences of such a change.
- Farming subsidies for wealthy land-owners who are not farming. The NFU says it is unavoidable because of the Common Agricultural Policy - another problem with the EU. DEFRA is opposed to capping payments which would penalise the National Trust. Richard Lochhead acknowledges the flaw in EU legislation and it will take two years to address the loopholes and inequalities. This is another example of the unintended consequences caused by inefficient legislation drafters.
Misleading and pressurised doorstep selling techniques.
Consumers are being held to ranson. Regulator Ofgem has predicted a rise in Energy suppliers’ prospective profit margins from £15 to £125 per customer. These figures are challenged by the industry, but in September 2011 Labour leader Ed Miliband attacked the “rigged” market in Britain, and Energy Secretary Chris Huhne said he planned to “get tough” with the firms.
HSBC faces a £40m bill after its subsidiary NHFA mis-sold investment bonds to elderly customers for financing elderly care. It includes a £10.5million fine, the fifth largest of any kind levied by the Financial Services Authority (FSA).
The MPs’ expenses scandal: some MPs were not happy with a job, influence beyond many in society, a public profile, a salary and expenses - they wanted more out of the system.
Broken promises by governing parties. “One’s word is one’s bond” has taken flight a long time ago with the consequent break-down in trust. Trust is the central theme in the Christian Gospel. As the Gospel has been abandoned, trust and goodwill have diminished with it.
- ”trust in politicians has evaporated”
- The list of jailed former politicians grows: MPs and Peers of the realm; Livingstone MP Jim Devine; MSP Tommy Sheridon; Highland councillor
Even Western leaders are under the legal spotlight:
Italy: Silvio Berlusconi’s antics are under investigation - again.
Iceland: Geir Haarde, Iceland’s prime minister, is the first politician in the world to face a criminal trial over the global financial crisis. Three of Iceland’s biggest banks went bust.
France: President Sarkozy of France under pressure over the Liliane Bettencourt affair.
France: Former president of France Jacques Chirac charged over illegal party funding.
France: Former IMF director Dominique Strauss-Kahn had charges of sexual assault dropped. He had been touted as a leading contender to take on French President Nicolas Sarkozy in the April 2012 presidential elections.
Britain: documents found in Libya suggest MI6 played a role in “rendition”.
Institutional ignoring of whistle-blowers as “trouble-makers”.
Failure of regulators such as the FSA in the banking scandal, the Care Quality Commission in the Winterbourne View care home scandal.
Media corruption is being exposed as it chips away at the edges of the law to win ‘exclusive’ stories to raise the credit-worthiness of the reporter, titillate the voyeuristic public who love gossip and selacious stories, and make money for the publisher. Transgression is seen to be a virtue, disguised as ‘in the public interest’, whereas we all know that what interests the public is not the same thing as in the interests of the public. The media and the public don’t know the difference between a cover-up and covering transgression in love - and little wonder when the Christian church fails to teach the difference. “And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins” 1Peter 4:8. The officious self-righteousness of gossipers and much tabloid journalism will meet its come-uppance when the Lord calls them to account for their own behaviour. In that day they will discover that they need something better than their self-righteous indignation. Rather, let them learn to taste the sweetness of the forgiveness of divine grace, and then they might be less inclined to cast stones at others and pull motes out of other people’s eyes while there is a beam in their own. Investigative journalism is to be highly commended; it is one of the bright jewels of a free society; it should be encouraged and given every assistance; but when it is adulterated to destroy the lives of innocent by-standers in the collateral damage created by tabloid journalism, these journalists and proprietors need to be reminded that with “what judgment you judge, you shall be judged” Matthew 7:2; 2Chronicles 19:6.
- 6 Jul 2011: The News of the World and the phone hacking scandal: police-media relationship scrutinised.
- 16 Nov 2011: Leveson inquiry reveals unethical media behaviour
- 26 Jun 2012: A presenter on the BBC consumer affairs programme Rogue Traders has admitted illegally claiming housing and council tax benefits totalling £24,000.
- 3 Oct 2012: ITV1 documentary on Channel 4, Exposure: The Other Side of Jimmy Savile. Esther Rantzen said: “We [the BBC] all colluded in it.” So much for Rupert Murdoch’s ridiculous theory that money will prevent temptation.
- 17 Oct 2012: Jon Simpson’s 1999 autobiography revealed BBC collusion in paedophilia, to add to the scandal of Jimmy Savile’s exposure.
- 22 Oct 2012: The BBC is accused of a cover-up by one of its own producers. Jimmy so-vile Savile is history, but this cover-up decision is current. “Truth crushed to earth shall rise again.” The world is discovering what it will be like on the Day of Judgment as the secrets of men’s hearts are exposed for all to see. Slowly, with difficulty, the world is being forced to face its need of the regenerating Spirit of God to renew hearts and clean up our society. It is not only television cameras which are capturing this exposure, but “God sees me” Gen 16:13. “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil” Ecc 12:13-14.
- 22 Oct 2012: BBC Newsnight editor has stepped down while BBC investigations take place.
- 22 Oct 2012: BBC correction.
- 22 Oct 2012: Panorama: Jimmy Savile - What the BBC Knew, BBC One, Monday, 22 October at 22:35 BST. The BBC turns the spotlight on itself about the BBC’s shelving of a Newsnight investigation into Jimmy Savile as a paedophile. They were told to stop working on the story. On the programme, Jon Simpson said: “this is the worse crisis that I can remember in my nearly 50 years at the BBC.” Another damaging crisis of epic proportions was the Andrew Gilligan and David Kelly affair.
- 27 Oct 2012: At the very time that the police are calling for people to come forward, to make life easier for whistleblowers, we know of the police informing a complainer against a public body that the complainer could be taken up for harassment. So much for the ability of our public services to heed cross-over lessons from public life. It also tells us that there are no Christian consciences, worthy of the description, in the process.
- 9 Nov 2012: BBC incompetence: after Newsnight failed to report the story of Jimmy Saville last year, now it is accused of reporting a damaging story which is not true. It is generally conceded that this is careless journalism, but ITV is no better. Phillip Schofield on its This Morning programme displayed a supposed paedophile list on live television, and has been criticised by David Cameron. The incompetence manifest in both cases arises from a common source - the failure to have a high regard for truth and the readiness to run with shocking or damaging news without investigating it thoroughly. This ungodly wrecking ball in modern journalism comes to light when important people are caught up in it, but it is worth recalling that tabloid journalism has destroyed multitudes of lives and families of ordinary people in recent decades by its ungodly prurience and lack of regard for the collateral damage and social consequences of its policies.
- 30 Nov 2010: Match-fixing scandal in cricket.
- 27 May 2011: FIFA’s investigation of corruption in football’s governing body.
- 22 Sep 2011: Now it is Olympic boxing – can we trust the judges? Trust again. Drugs, blood doping (a transfusion of an extra pint of blood), fast suits in swimming, are simply the tip of widespread forms of corruption in sport.
- 16 Dec 2011: Football fans who don’t really care about the effect of their behaviour on the rest of the football club.
- 5 Mar 2012: The events surrounding Rangers Football Club going into administration has uncovered financial incompetence and possibly corruption about alleged non-disclosure of payments made to players. It exposes the ignorance of those who in heady days think that they can get off with their schemes. We need more grace in society.
- 2 Nov 2012: Criminal investigation into Rangers stakeholder
- 22 Oct 2012: Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles by cycling’s governing body, the International Cycling Union (UCI).
Institutional bullying, such as in care homes and even in churches.
Not safe even in our hospitals. An alarming lack of care of the elderly identified in 20% of hospitals, with a litany of stories from concerned relatives.
- The Patients Association complains about lack of care being “the tip of the iceberg”. Such icy hearts manifest that a Christian conscience is absent.
- Reasons given for poor care of the elderly is that the quality of worker is low because of low wages and lack of training. This poor diagnosis overlooks the lack of human compassion in such ‘untrained’ people. Rather it that they are not suited for the caring profession no matter how well they are trained and whatever salary they are given.
- 15 Nov 2011Coroners fail to investigate hospital deaths adequately.
- 17 Nov 2011 Rare death from pressure sores unattended in care home for the elderly.
- 16 Dec 2011 Carers ignoring relatives’ understanding of dementia patients.
- 22 Feb 2012 Illegal abortions based on the sex of the unborn baby - no questions asked Sex-selection is illegal, is practised in the UK, and it is being euphemistically known as “family balancing”.
- 12 Mar 2012: Care home residents ‘denied basic GP medical services’
- 18 May 2012: Dementia patient had 106 carers in the last year of his life.
- 16 Oct 2012: EU health commissioner John Dalli quits over fraud inquiry.
- 29 Oct 2012: The Hospital That Stopped Caring. After the exposure and closure of Winterbourne View Hospital, all similar hospitals and homes for people with learning disabilities were inspected and nearly half failed to meet necessary standards for care and safety. Vic Citarella, one of the authors of Winterbourne View Serious Case Review said: “Which ever way you look, the professionals within Winterbourne View – the nurses, the psychiatrist – let people down. And then you look in terms of the commissioners that purchased the service, safeguarding who missed things, police who missed things. So every group of professionals, every group of organisations, fell down in some shape or form, and that’s a pretty sorry story.” Dr Margaret Flynn, the other author, said: “If nothing else results from the scandal of Winterbourne View Hospital, I very much hope that it is scrutiny of a practice that moves people around as though they are pawns. We can and should be doing something so much better than placing people in units that we do not know what it is that they can reliably deliver.”
Caring, or lack of care:
Babies are twelve times more likely to be abused or killed than older children. The problem is associated with mothers who have problems with mental health, drug, alcohol or domestic violence. The abortionists’ slogan was “every baby a wanted baby” - in other words, if you don’t want a baby, abort it. UK society needs a good dose of Christian conscience and compassion.
- 11 Sep 2007: NSPCC faked child abuse stories to generate cash.
- 7 Sep 2012: Charity boss jailed for child abuse.
- 7 Sep 2012: Ambulance boss concealed his murder conviction.
Corrupt professional practices:
Insurance companies and lawyers are colluding in a motoring scam based on lies - in which road accident victims are encouraged to sue for non-existent personal injury. Although motor accidents went down by 10%; injury claims went up by 43% with 1200 claims per day for whiplash injury. This is because people in accidents are being encouraged to claim for injuries which never happened and are difficult to disprove. “Claims farming” finds people to claim compensation in what Jack Straw calls “a rotten merry-go-round”. There are benefits for insurance companies, lawyers and accident victims, but the down side is for the vast majority of ordinary law abiding motorists whose premiums are going up year by year. The problem seems to be the inability to define what are legitimate and illegitimate ‘referral fees’. Rather, the problem is telling lies and the impunity with which professionals will collude with lies. “The love of money is a root of all evil” 1Timothy 6:10.
- 12 Jan 2012: “Insurers, solicitors and claims management companies have themselves driven up the cost of motor premiums by encouraging people caught up in road accidents they did not cause to claim for personal injury, car hire, and other legal costs.” This compensation culture sponges off other people by increasing their premiums. It is estimated that it has raised motor insurance by £90/year. The insurance industry is charged with sharp practices that push up premiums, encouraged by professionals who advise clients to claim for whiplash injury which is very difficult to disprove. The Association of British Insurers (ABI) agreed that the payment of referral fees should be banned, and it backed the call for action to restrict whiplash claims, suggesting that there is evidence of spurious claims. Whiplash accounted for 70% of all injury claims - amounting to roughly 554,000 whiplash claims in 2010-11.
- 29 May 2012: Dentists join the growing list of professionals who are not happy with a salary and a good job, but they must also swindle their clients.
- 3 Jul 2012: Drug company GlaxoSmithKline admits bribing US doctors to prescribe their drugs and is set to pay a record $3bn (£1.9bn) in the largest healthcare fraud settlement in US history.
- 24 Oct 2012: BBC suggests that Rangers administrators Duff and Phelps have covered up their knowledge that Craig Whyte had sold season tickets to buy the club.
- 25 Oct 2012: BBC suggests that Rangers administrators Duff and Phelps tried to get Craig Whyte to give a misleading statement to HMRC.
Police corruption and incompetence:
Police collusion in criminal trials.
An emergency phone operator working for the Metropolitan Police has been sacked for ignoring some 999 calls. The Independent Police Complaints Commissioner in London, Deborah Glass, said that “it beggars belief”. Rather, it shows that over-weaning belief in the goodness of man fails to take into account the wickedness of man.
Police withholding potential evidence from criminal trials, involving an unprecedented number of four senior police officers, including Northamptonshire’s chief constable and deputy chief constable.
Metropolitan Police commander Ali Dizaei is sentenced to three years in prison for misconduct in a public office and perverting the course of justice.
Miscarriage of justice because the police did not check out the alibi of a teenage suspect who was then jailed for eight years for a murder he did not commit. This shows the inability of the criminal system to rigorously prove their prosecution case, and the judicial system to detect it.
- 25 May 2012: A Scotland Yard detective arrested and three former officers regarding claims that serving anti-corruption police were bribed.
- 13 Jun 2012: an MP has used Parliamentary privilege to name a university lecturer as a suspected arsonist while working for the Metropolitan Police. Bob Lambert has denied the allegations.
- Bob Lambert’s activities as an undercover Metropolitan Police office including fathering a child. Undercover activities are raising concerns about the modus operandi of the Metropolitan Police.
- He is now an academic in the University of St Andrews: biographical details.
- Lambert’s profile and involvement with Islamic counter-terrorism.
22 Jun 2012: A retired detective chief superintendent was found guilty of attempting to defeat the ends of justice. He was convicted of withholding evidence from prosecutors while investigating a murder in Fife 17 years ago. The Campaign group, Miscarriages of Justice Scotland, said the case was the first time that a corrupt policeman in the UK had been convicted of wrongdoing in relation to a miscarriage of justice.
- 12 Sep 2012: Hillsborough report exposes police corruption and emergency service inadequacies.
- 23 May 2012: a leading insolvency expert says that it appears that the administrators of Rangers Football Club Administrators are guilty of one of the starkest conflicts of interest.
- 24 May 2012: Administrators deny conflict of interest.
- The story thus far.
- 22 June 2012: Lord Hodge at the Court of Session in Edinburgh, orders Duff and Phelps to prove there is no conflict of interest over their role as Rangers administrators.
John Reid said when he became Home Secretary that the Home Office was “not fit for purpose”. We are discovering the same is true of many large institutions, which are being exposed as having incompetent managers who hide behind the reputation of the institution, benefiting from the gullibility of the public impressed by celebrity, size and importance.
Our society has bred uncaring individuals in positions of authority who don’t have the powers of discrimination to tell the difference between 1. a good and a bad risk (bankers); 2. a complaint and a call for help from whistle-blowers (even in the caring profession: NHS, care homes, etc).
Promises to look into complaints are followed by dragging their heels until the complainer grows weary.
- Chancellor George Osborne’s U-turns are beginning to look like incompetence.
- 17 Jul 2012: The head of security company G4S has said he regrets it ever took on the Olympic security contract, as he agreed it had become a “humiliating shambles”.
Paul Mason, Newsnight’s Economics Editor, said on Newsnight 19/8/2011: “The world’s politicians have no idea what to do next” while discussing the strong possibility of a double dip recession.
- 25 Apr 2012: the double dip recession has arrived.
- 5 Nov 2011 Ignoring passport controls. Home Secretary Theresa May’s reaction to the allegations was “incredulity and fury”, but there is nothing incredible to readers of this site about the lazy incompetence manifesting itself in public life.
- 7 Nov 2011 Home secretary’s excuse.
- 22 Nov 2011 Extra border relaxation ‘never mentioned’
- 20 Feb 2012 hundreds of thousands of people were let into the country without appropriate checks.
- A top neurosurgeon was suspended from work, waiting lists and patients were affected, because a manager was afraid of taking responsibility for exercising appropriate judgment over a case about an extra helping of soup and croutons. He was reinstated a week later, not by sensible management but after the intervention of the British Medical Association acting on his behalf. This same neurosurgeon could have ordered a meal to be sent to the theatre if need be, but we now have a society that does not understand some simple Biblical principles, such as not muzzling the ox which treads the corn (Deu 25:4; 1Cor 9:9; 1Tim 5:18). On the other hand, for every self-righteous, self-appointed ‘policeman’ who makes life miserable for all those around them, there are a dozen laissez-faire, “couldn’t care less”, individuals whose inefficient and unreliable work slows down the whole process to the speed of the slowest boat in the convoy. Trust is at a premium in public life. The Speed of Trust by Stephen M. R. Covey explains how things improve with trust, and deteriorate when trust is absent. Ministers refused to get involved, saying suspensions were a local matter, and the Department of Health did not want to express a view about whether guidelines had been followed in this case. This lack of involvement is endemic in our society. There is no consistent standard of behaviour in our society. “Every man did that which was right in his own eyes” Jdg 17:6; 21:25; Deu 12:8; Pro 12:15; 21:2.
- Hospital trusts going insolvent through financial mismanagement.
- 15 Feb 2012 Teenage witness put at risk and his family’s life ruined by incompetence in the justice system
Misplaced diagnosis and solutions:
Blaming the system instead of incompetent individuals who cannot tell the difference between a complaint and a call for help from whistle-blowers: such as the Care Quality Commission.
Lazy solutions which are no solution: instead of naming the sin, which takes time and trouble, a commission of inquiry makes a new set of rules which inhibit the system with red tape and supply more jobs for those administrating the rules - if they can find the time to do so. This is equivalent to giving the whole team a yellow card instead of the offending footballer. It is sickening to hear the constant refrain from a failing system: “What can you expect when we don’t have enough staff, money and resources? - give us more money to put our system right.” This culture has prevailed since senior administrators failed to resign when failures came to light, and instead of finding the level of failure and dealing with the individual(s) concerned, we have a culture where it can cost more in compensation to sack an individual than to reform the system.
The failure to ‘name the sin’, or identify the problem, manifests itself in various ways. One example is the penalising of all young drivers between 17 and 25 years old with high insurance premiums. The recent equalising of premiums between male and female drivers on anti-discrimination legislation could suggest that this age policy is a form of ageism. However, we know that young people are a greater risk, so what does one do? Answer: identify the problem rather than penalise all young people. It should not be difficult to devise a system which gives pay-back to the safe young drivers, which is little different from the no-claims bonus, but this is not as simple nor as profitable as putting up the premium for all young drivers. This lazy attitude to the problems in life ranges across the whole of society.
Equalities legislation fails to deal with this problem, for it decrees equality, where there may be none, as the catch-all solution to problems which may have a variety of causes and thus a variety of solutions.
Man’s inhumanity to man is seen in the growing inhumane attitude to life - legal and illegal - as in 1. abortion legislation; 2. attempts to legalise assisted killing; 3. vigilante teenage knifings and 4. gang culture and terrorising estates.
- Social engineering by selecting and uncaring parents.
- Thugs robbing an injured youth while pretending to help him. Even when the 2011 rioting in English cities settles down, the ungodly spirit of such people remains and is not being addressed. Stopping the violence is not enough; changing their spirit by the Gospel is needed, and it is very much cheaper than all the ‘programs’ devised at tax payers’ expense.
- poisoning poor children.
- 14 year old teenager stabs foster carer to death.
Many people have got fed up with foreign Call Centres where people are very polite but each cannot understand each other’s accent. However a growing trend with UK telephone operators is their impatience, such as “you will have to be quick as I am on a switchboard”; or one may experience suggestions such as “quickly please” although you are giving them custom.
Neglect of children by drug-addicted and alcoholic mothers.
Binge drinking culture: expectation of the NHS to pick up the pieces: alcohol-related problems involve 70% of A&E departments; orthopaedics (broken bones); Coronoary Care; sexually transmitted diseases; alcoholic liver failure; acute pancreatitis (35-40% alcoholic); chronic pancreatitis (60-70% alcoholic).
High risk sports and outdoor activities: expectation of the NHS and emergency services to pick up the pieces.
Teenage knifing and armed robbery.
An 18 year old juror thought that he could skip jury service simply by telling lies to attend a West End musical. His father excused his absence by saying that he did “what most teenagers would do”. If this is so, then our education of teenagers has failed society. When his father went on to blame the lowering of the juror age from 21 to 18 years old, this shows that the culture of irresponsible excuses has been around for longer than the current generation of youngsters. This attitude shows why corruption is so prevalent in our society.
NASA and other space agencies have “lost control of the environment” so that space debris has now reached a tipping point.
- 4 Mar 2011: Selling degrees at the London School of Economics.
- 21 Oct 2011: After 120 years the University of Wales, the second largest university in the UK, has been effectively abolished after two BBC Wales investigations, the latest into allegations of a visa scam involving one of its partner colleges in London. More than 470 UK Colleges have been barred in the last six months from accepting new foreign students from outside Europe. They have lost their licences in an immigration crackdown about student visas.
- 8 Dec 2011: examiners giving ‘tips to teachers’ to help pupils pass their exams.
- 15 Dec 2011: Examiners reject cheating claims.
- 21 Dec 2011: Exam watchdog Ofqual has ordered the re-writing of an exam paper.
- 30 Aug 2012: London Metropolitan University will no longer be allowed to authorise visas. The UK Border Agency (UKBA) says student attendance at London Metropolitan University is not being monitored and that many have no right to be here. The University has had its licence to teach and recruit students from outside the EU revoked.
The plethora of unanswerable questions in exam papers in 2011 is another manifestation of relying on the wrong people at the critical moment, and then hiding behind collective responsibility when the errors are discovered too late.
Incompetent school management permitting a paedophile to carry on.
- 26 Jan 2012: Church of England vicar jailed for sham marriages
- 30 Aug 2012: two decades of child protection failures in the Church of England diocese of Chichester are “the tip of the iceberg”.
- Body image: exploiting women with dodgy breast implants
What do you mean by a new morality?
A new morality is running through our society replacing the traditional Judaeo-Christian morality with a humanistic one. In order to accomplish this, the Christian church and its message of the Gospel, which empowers sinners to keep the law of God, is being undermined.
This new morality is seen by the overturning of the Ten Commandments thus:
1st commandment: “no other God” is replaced by atheistic humanism, which is promoted in public life and our educational establishments.
2nd commandment: “no idolatry”: having abandoned God, the celebrity culture is the new form of idolatry.
3rd commandment: “no blasphemy”: the new right of ‘taking offence’ has been legalised and prioritised, irrespective of whether giving offence was intended - except swear words are permitted and even encouraged if they demean the serious use of Christian terms, such as God, Jesus, Christ, heaven and hell.
4th commandment: God’s weekly holy day is abandoned - more than seven weeks of annual holiday replaced by a meagre measure from employers bent on robbing the worker of his God-given rest (Sabbath is the Hebrew for ‘rest’).
5th commandment: parental rights are being undermined in favour of society’s rights to the affections and talents of the next generation. Parental rights have been supplanted by parental responsibilities, children’s rights, and forced adoption.
6th commandment: murder is rife and voluntary euthanasia is being promoted. Social abortion includes the euphemism “pregnancy reduction”, which began with IVF and has continued with twin and multiple pregnancies.
7th commandment: easy divorce for ‘falling out of love’ is spawning a generation of fatherless children with the social discontent and unrest which comes from this. Society needs the reminder from the Bible: “Husbands, love your wives.” There is now an attempt to re-define marriage by those whose education was not adequate to teach them what marriage is.
8th commandment: stealing each other’s honour, life, wife, goods and good reputation are the order of the day.
9th commandment: truth is at a premium; promises are not followed through, and trust in our public institutions is eroding fast.
10th commandment: covetousness in the form of consumerism is positively promoted, and led to the boom and bust of recent times.
This is a form of social engineering and it is not driven by reasoned argument but by pressure groups targetting the levers and corridors of power where the laws are made. Christians will need to become more involved in politics.
The Old Testament prophets frequently exposed the social abuses which followed religious declension and so the Scottish Christian Party sees the promotion of true Christianity as one of the methods of dealing with youth crime, endemic corruption, alcohol and drug addictions, etc., which ruin people’s lives and whole communities. The SCP tries to punch above its weight in view of the failure of institutional churches to expose this endemic corruption in our society. We hope to promote healthy education, healthy bodies and a healthy society. Undercover journalism is doing a better job than most at exposing corruption because of its resources and its ability to film secretly. The public forgets that God is watching all our behaviour, and He will hold us all to account in due course. The collective public shock at the discovery of yet another undercover media story will be replicated on a grand scale in due course at the Day of Judgment, about which the public no longer hears in public life - with the inevitable consequences in endemic corruption in our society.
Politics cannot change hearts but it can change the legal framework to allow the application of Christian solutions to society’s ills. This is why we need Christian politicians, to let the Christian church get on with its mission, and let Christian ministers speak prophetically to the needs of the hour.
The sexualisation of children has been around for a long time but it is topical since the Government asked Reg Bailey, Chief Executive of the Mother’s Union, to produce the Bailey Review on the subject.
Parents sue over sexualisation of children.
More than a thousand children are sexually exploited in any one day in Britain.
29 Apr 2012 Four year old children expelled from school for sexual misconduct.
What is wrong with the SNP?
Unlike other Unionist political parties, we do not pillory Scotland’s abilities. The Scottish Christian Party believes that Scotland is quite capable of standing on its own two feet, if we should chose to separate from the United Kingdom. Besides, the SCP thinks that it has a better vision for Scotland than the SNP.
The SNP gathers support from Christians, not because of its policies, but because of its being the only party in favour of Scottish withdrawal from the UK. We need to deal with these issues separately. This FAQ is about the SNP. The subject of Independence is not really on the agenda because the SNP is not offering Independence but to replace one Union with another Union. Many Christians think that Scotland will be better off without “corrupt” England, but they have not put the case how we will be better off with Europe instead. Many Christians think that an independent Scotland will help Christianity in Scotland, but an independent Scotland is not on offer - the SNP plan to take us even further into the European Union.
The problem for the SNP is that they have given us no good reasons why we should separate from the UK, other than ideological aspirations. We are not convinced by Alex Salmond, and as time is progressing people are seeing that the SNP leadership has made policy on the hoof. The emperor has no clothes. As Christians, we do not believe in blind faith, and before Scotland jumps we should see what the landing ground is, and how firm it is. Alex Salmond is blundering on with his plans to redefine marriage, with very little thought given to the unintended consequences both north and south of the border.
The SNP proposals for independence put at risk the Christian constitution of Scotland. For five years the SCP have been drawing attention to this, but we have received no satisfactory response. Does Alex Salmond want a republican Scotland?
The Scottish public felt that the SNP had done well in its first term in office (2007-2011), but it now emerges that this was because of the balanced nature of that hung Parliament. Now that the SNP has an overall majority and can chose the issues which it wishes to pursue, these are:
1. The first piece of legislation in this new Parliament, the Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications (Scotland) Bill, or ‘antisectarian Bill’, had little public consultation and caused much disquiet. It is attempting to turn hate into a crime. Alex Salmond wanted to rush this through the Scottish Parliament inside one week for the beginning of the football season, but was forced to pause for several months because it was so poorly drafted that it threatened freedom of speech. It was passed on 14/12/2011 with cross-party opposition and general disquiet at its broad sweep provisions.
2. Within months of winning a majority in the Scottish Parliament in May 2011, the SNP Government has put at the top of its priorities the redefining of marriage to include homosexual couples. After failing to consult widely on the Offensive Behaviour Bill, its consultation on redefining marriage was so wide that it emerged in the last few days of the consultation that homosexual groups from outside Scotland had been filling in the consultation, which the Government welcomed. The SCP labelled the consultation “not fit for purpose”.
3. The Bill against stalking highlighted the inability of paid individuals to do their job, and the Bill against sectarianism that our legislators cannot see the consequences of their own actions.
4. Their desire for independence from England is not matched by independence from the European Union. The EU is an unelected, unaccountable, inefficient, bureaucratic form of government which is not even ripening for reform but simply getting worse. When national governments are making cuts in times of austerity, the EU has increased its budget by sucking more money from member states.
5. Its inability to define exactly what does it mean by Independence is symptomatic of the inability to address issues comprehensively rather than in the piecemeal fashion of 1. propose an idea; 2. discover over time what is wrong with it, at tax-payers’ expense, waste of police and court time, and ruining individual’s lives; 3. demand more time and money to put it right.
Nationalism is not the same as patriotism; the SNP appeal to the merits of the latter to support their attitudes expressed in the former. Yet SNP nationalism is very selective; thus it supports Robert Burns as the national poet, but it is not heard to support the Church of Scotland as the national church, nor John Knox as Scotland’s national Reformer. The Scottish Christian Party accepts that nations should be stable units of accountable society, promoting peaceful international relationships, but the exact definition of a nation varies from place to place. Autonomous self-government is an illusory concept, and it is not of the essence of a nation, otherwise Scotland would not be a nation at present, which is a preposterous conclusion. SNP advocacy of independence amounts to the right to make one’s own laws and raise one’s own taxes, independent of Westminster. However such an independent Scotland will not be independent of Europe. So these elements are not of the essence of a nation. The SNP has still to do a lot of explaining, but it hopes to gain its ends not by explanation but simply by declaration through majority voting. The Scottish Executive under the SNP began to call itself the Scottish Government and this gained such common currency that the Scotland Bill intends to accept and legitimise the term. Similarly by force of declaration the SNP hopes to persuade a majority simply to vote for an independent Scotland without explaining exactly what it is and why we should have it. This belief that truth resides with the majority is not a Scottish Christian Party principle, and the SCP fears that SNP nationalism is born out of an anti-English sentiment, just as many current attitudes are anti-American. This is not a Christian attitude and so the SCP does not support it. Rather the concepts of a United Kingdom, the United Nations, the League of Nations, the Arab League, the Commonwealth of Nations are stepping stones towards the Christian goal when “the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ” Revelation 11:15.
The SNP talk on Independence is toning down and moderating, which is good, but we still do not know where it is going. The debate will be useful for clarifying what Scotland needs in a modern world, but sudden decisions are the last thing we need. “Marry in haste, repent at leisure” possibly applies to the Union and almost certainly to the EU, but like marriage there should be good grounds for divorce. The bigamy of being in the United Kingdom and the EU is manifesting itself by the conflict in legal jurisdiction, and the SNP want to divorce England to legalise its marriage to the EU.
Alex Salmond has said the essence of independence is self-determination - but in this he is still selective. He has opted for political independence of a sort, but not fiscal independence. Why should we not determine our own currency? The truth is that Scotland is an independent nation now, which is in Union with England. The Church of Scotland is independent from the Church of England; our legal and educational systems are independent. We run our Health Service separately. The SNP wants political independence, like ecclesiastical independence, but it is gratuitous to call this Scottish independence. The Scottish nation is already independent, but if we are tied to the British pound, and our lives are run by European laws, where’s the political independence? It is illusory.
6. It is concentrating on central belt issues rather than national infrastructure. This criticism related to its first term, and in more recent times it has published a wider strategic plan. However, to implement it, the SNP demands Independence to secure the money to implement its grand promises.
7. It has become a mainline party focusing on jobs and frontline services, while offering inadequate solutions to the sea-change in the religious and moral life of Scotland. It fails to see that this is at the root of many of our problems - employment sickness, depression, sectarianism, etc.
8. Energy policy
The SNP energy policy to have 100% of Scotland’s energy needs supplied from renewable energy by 2020 is aspirational but quite unreal. We cannot bridge the “energy gap” in that time and the SNP are simply closing their eyes to reality. The SNP hopes to recoup investment in renewables by selling energy to England, but this is unreal because the transmission line between Scotland and England is already full and there is no more capacity to export electricity.
These aspirational ideas remind us of Alex Salmond’s “Tiger economies” in which an independent Scotland was going to follow the lead of Iceland and Ireland - it was quite unreal and shortly afterwards Iceland, Ireland, Royal Bank of Scotland and the Bank of Scotland were bankrupt and required the tax-payer to bail them out.
Nor is there any proof that England will buy from us if they replace their nuclear power plants and become self-sufficient in energy. One of Tony Blair’s last acts before resigning as Prime Minister was to sign up to the next generation of nuclear power. This unilateral action endeared him to the nuclear industry and no doubt helped his retiral plans, saved Gordon Brown and the Labour Party the political fall-out, and helped to put UK or at least England on a more secure energy footing in the near future.
Rather the Scottish Christian Party policy on renewables is to develop tidal energy and to export the technology around the world without the need for transmission lines. The ridiculous subsidy policy for wind turbines, enriching rich land owners at the expense of the ordinary electricity user who pays for the subsidies, would be better spent on research and development of tidal power. Meanwhile the energy gap can only be filled with nuclear power while we continue to research and develop alternative energy sources, not least the much safer and more efficient alternative in nuclear fusion, with tidal and solar energy along with hydro-electric being the most sustainable forms of energy. Wind and wave energy are proving too intermittent, unpredictable and expensive to be useful on the large scale which the country needs.
9. The Referendum
Independence is not on the agenda. Rather, the SNP is advocating separation from the United Kingdom
The SNP has given up its two question referendum and its hope to include 16 and 17-year-olds in the referendum on separation.
Alex Salmond thinks he can make Scotland nuclear-free constitutionally. This illustrates the dogmatism of his leadership style. He is using this as a bargaining chip for his change of mind on membership of NATO in order to keep his SNP troops in submission. It shows the breath-taking arrogance of his neo-humanist morality - Big Al knows best and he must write it into our constitution.
Substantive questions the SNP needs to answer:
Will the SNP retain the Christian constitution of Scotland? or will it default to a secular or multifaith constitution?
As the SNP cannot guarantee nor dictate the policies of future independent Scottish Governments, to what extent will the constitution of an independent Scotland be fixed by the referendum process?
What currency will Scotland have?
Alex Salmond wants the euro. Recently he has agreed to retain the pound, but this smacks of temporary expediency. How long will this last, and how can we control our own currency if it is determined by the Bank of England?
Who will be the lender of last resort?
How will the National Debt be divided up?
Alex Salmond has said Scotland will have about 8%. As he thinks that Scotland should share the same percentage of assets and liabilities, this implies he wants 8% of UK gold reserves.
How will we defend Scotland?
The SNP will remove nuclear weapons and nuclear power stations from Scotland.
16 Jul 2012: Angus Robertson, their Defence spokesman, confirms that they will scrap Trident but it seems it will reverse its view on NATO. There was a time when it gained votes to oppose membership of NATO, which the SNP has done for over 30 years, but now the reality of Government is forcing a re-think of these slogans and attitudes among those who will not think their way through issues in good time, but play to the wishes of their supporters.
Why should independence from England be replaced with Union to the EU?
There are claims that the 1979 referendum was gerrymandered by the Westminster Parliament. The 40% rule was introduced by George Cunningham, Labour, supported by the Conservatives.
Questions answered so far about the process:
- 1. Timing: the referendum will be in Autumn 2014 and Alex Salmond has given the assurance it will not be later than this.
- 2. the voters: “the people who live and work in Scotland” said Alex Salmond in launching the consultation paper on 25/1/2012. The SNP wants to include 16 and 17 year olds.
- 3. the SNP has accepted that the Electoral Commission will conduct the referendum.
- 4. the SNP want two questions on the ballot paper A. “Do you agreed that Scotland should be an independent country?” B. a question on maximising devolution powers “devo-max”.
- 5. Settling legal challenges: the Scottish Government, although thinking that it has the right to hold a referendum by itself, will work with the UK Govt to ensure the legality of the referendum without the risk of legal challenge.
Questions answered so far about substantive matters:
- 1. The SNP will negotiate after independence for Scotland to be a member of the EU.
- 2. The SNP will not be a member of NATO. Sorry, this is not answered. As from 16 Jul 2012 there has been a re-think. 23 Jul 2012: YouGov survey: 75% of Scottish adults believe an Independent Scotland should remain in NATO. 11% thought Scotland should leave. 70% of SNP voters want to be part of NATO.
- 3. The SNP will retain the Queen as head of state. Will this be constitutional or open to debate afterwards?
- 4. The SNP will retain the British pound as the currency and the Bank of England as the lender of last resort. Will this be constitutional or open to debate afterwards?
Questions not answered:
- 1. What will happen to Scotland’s Christian constitution? Will the Church of Scotland remain the national church?
- 2. The SNP Government says that it is consulting and listening, but the experience of many at the bottom of the political scale is that SNP Ministers do not even acknowledge far less answer enquiries.
23 Jul 2012: Panelbase survey showed 45% are opposed, 36% in favour and 20% undecided on Independence. 62% of women disagree with Independence, being more opposed to it than men.
What is government by stealth?
It is that form of government which tries to keep its views and policies hidden from the electorate before the Election and then implements them after the election. If these views are exposed by another Party, it is called ‘a dirty campaign’.
It takes various forms.
1. Sometimes a party will say it will not do something, and then it does the exact opposite. For example, David Cameron said he would not raise VAT in the 2010 General Election, and promptly did so after winning the Election. The Lib Dems pledged not to introduce student tuition fees, and then did so.
2. Sometimes a party will hint at something, buried in the depths of its Manifesto, and then claim its radical programme “was in its Manifesto”. The Tories did this with the NHS at the 2010 General Election. David Cameron claimed that the NHS was safe in his hands and then in government he introduced top-down radical changes without any consultation, claiming that the change was ‘in the Manifesto’.
3. Sometimes a party keeps its ideas off the agenda. Those of you who saw the Green Party Election Broadcast for the 2011 Scottish Parliament might have been puzzled why the Leader of the Green Party in Holyrood – Patrick Harvie – did not feature in it. Why not? It may because of the low profile he needed at this time because the Scottish Christian Party highlighted that Patrick Harvie was using the Green Party to advance the homosexual agenda.
4. Sometimes a party leader will hold back a piece of information until the last minute. Alex Salmond has just declared his support for homosexual marriage, only days before he hopes to be re-elected as First Minister of the Scottish Parliament. Many postal votes will have been cast, donations given to the party, and many will have voted before this became generally known. After the Election, the leader can then claim that he has a mandate for the newly declared matter. David Cameron said days before the May 2010 General Election that he had no plans to redefine marriage. In the 2013 House of Commons debate on the Second Reading, claims were made that a document committing to ‘equality’ had been published only days before the Election. This shows the underhand, sleight of hand, by our political leaders. If they had nothing to hide, why behave like this? Jesus gives us the answer to this sort of behaviour.
5. Small parties at the protest stage in their development will make grandiose promises to appeal to sections of the public to obtain votes, then discover that they have to jettison these promises when they gain political power. In other words, their principles bowed to political pragmatism, or rather, their principles never were pragmatic for political power, but they were very pragmatic for gaining votes by promising these people what they wanted, although they could never deliver. Thus the Lib Dems promised to vote against student tuition fees while in opposition, but when they unexpectedly obtained power in the Con-Dem alliance after the 2010 General Election, they performed a prompt U-turn and ditched the policy. The SNP were a party opposed to NATO for decades, but voted at its Oct 2012 conference to support membership upon certain conditions in order to try to win the favour of voters for the 2014 referendum on Scottish separation from the UK. The unreality of their former stance eventually dawned upon them, but in the intervening decades it served them in good stead to gain supporters and political power. This procedure is so well-known to political commentators that there is even a term for it: gradualism. It is part of crisis management, whereby a crisis which demands a solution is engineered so that the pre-arranged solution can be ‘suggested’ and adopted as the solution to the crisis.
This is Government by stealth. They fly low – below the radar – to keep information away from the electorate. This is why there is a crisis of trust in politics.
The economic downturn is an opportunity 1. to bury bad news; 2. to introduce cuts under the guise that ‘it must be done’; and also 3. to introduce moral change when people’s minds are focused on other matters. This economic downturn will come to an end, but the moral revolution will continue long after the economic dust has settled. This shows the sleight of hand in so much modern politics.
- 19 Nov 2011: The SCP response to the redefining of marriage states: “Civil partnerships between homosexuals were not introduced as equivalent to marriage, and to transform them into marriage is legislation by stealth.”
- 17 Jul 2012: Politics of incrementalism.
- 4 Jan 2013: another example is the Tory leadership election in Scotland. When we asked where was the vote among the Scottish Tories in favour of redefining married, we were told that it was ‘implicit’ in the Tory leadership election. Why was it not explicit? Did the elderly Tory supporters realise this? Is this why Ruth Davidson declared at that time of the leadership campaign that she supported marriage but once her support for re-defining marriage became more generally known, she would not respond to a constituent’s enquiry about her former statement in support of marriage? This is another example of government by stealth and explains why the public is losing faith in secular politics. They need a good dose of Christian politics to restore faith in modern democracy.
- 5 Feb 2013: Another example is the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill introduced to the Westminster Parliament. It was not in the Manifesto of any of the major parties. Three days before the May 2010 General Election David Cameron announced on Sky news that he was “not planning” to introduce same-sex marriage. The excuse pulled out during the debate was that it was in a document called ‘A Contract for Equalities’ published by the Conservative Party only three days before the last election, on 3 May 2010. This ‘justification’ shows the stealth of this Government. Besides, the document only says: “We will also consider the case for changing the law to allow civil partnerships to be called and classified as marriage.” Some consideration! Besides, many people had already voted by post, and most of the country did not know about this. In this respect, it is similar to Alex Salmond declaring himself in favour of redefining marriage only days before the Scottish Parliamentary election (see No. 4 above).
What is government by trial and error?
This is very common. It is found at every level in society. The basic idea is not bad in itself, but the problem arises when it is found in government’s legislative process, usually because it is so costly in economic, personal and social terms.
It is the piecemeal approach to legislation in which a government 1. proposes an idea; 2. discovers over time what is wrong with it, at tax-payers’ expense, waste of police and court time, and ruining individual’s lives; and 3. spends more time and money to put it right rather than abandon the idea. If a business behaves like this, it goes out of business; when governments behave like this, they just tax the rich more. The European Union is going through this process; it taxes rich countries.
This is what happened with our consumer boom, turned debtor boom, turned hand-out boom, turned Big Bang bust. Most of the western economies followed the same path. Consumerism led to the credit boom, which then fed the debit boom, then we became a debtor society and now a dependency society with more on welfare benefits than can be gathered in by taxes. While overseas missionaries try to teach self-sufficiency to poor societies, rather than relying on hand-outs, at home we are promoting a hand-out society not only in our welfare system but in the manner in which charities and new start-ups constantly expect grants not only to start up but to continue.
It is the direct opposite of Biblical teaching. “The prudent man foresees the problem, and avoids it” Proverbs 22:3; 27:12.
It arises from the inability to address issues comprehensively rather than in a piecemeal fashion. There is a place for trial and error, in small pilot studies, but by the time a person becomes a chief executive or a politician, one expects such people to have learned enough in life not to make silly mistakes. However, silly mistakes are in abundance in public life - such as Fred Goodwin’s failure to do due diligence on the biggest banking take-over in history, relying on the Barclay’s due diligence while trying to purchase ABN AMRO. On the other hand, this may be because of a certain relationship with Barclays, for on 20/1/2011, RBS were fined £28.58 million for having engaged in anti-competitive practices with Barclays in relation to the pricing of loan products to large professional services firms.
We expect better from politicians. However, we now have a breed of professional politicians who have secured their position by their party machine rather than exhibiting their credentials to the electorate. This does not mean that they are tried and tested, and the result is shoddy legislation with the sad effects described.
- 26 Jun 2012: Chancellor George Osborne’s latest U-turn, postponing the 3p fuel duty due in August 2012, joins the growing list of U-turns on pasties, churches, charities, caravans and skips. The frequency of his U-turns is undermining his credibility, suggesting incompetence and indecisiveness - an unwanted quality in a Chancellor guiding the nation through the worst global economic crisis in economic history. His trial and error budget is unravelling his credibility.
What is the politics of incrementalism
Politics is the art of the possible. Often it is not possible to change the law as much as one wants to, so one does it in stages - in increments. If one heats up water slowly, one acclimatises to it; but it is too much to go immediately from cold to hot without damage.
In itself, this is not a bad thing, but it can be used for good or for ill.
For example, the redefining of marriage is being done in stages. It began with the introduction of civil partnerships, with reassurances that this would not interfere with marriage. Many people were taken in by this, however, within a decade it is morphing into homosexual ‘marriage’. This is so contentious, that even this is being done in stages. In Scotland and England, assurances are made that this will not affect churches, but the European Court on Human Rights, whilst denying that this is a human rights issue, has said that if a country legislates for this, then it must be applied equally, so that churches will not be exempt in the long run. Stonewall has already said that they will return to the churches later. This is the politics of incrementalism.
In England the government wants to legislate for “civil marriages” only, which are distinguished from “religious marriages”. This is simply a method of locking in gains until the public is familiar with the new situation and then they will push for the next stage. The purpose of incrementalism is to avoid dealing with future consequences. This is sleight of hand if its proponents give reassurance that “we are not dealing with [such and such]”, knowing full well that one set of politicians cannot prevent the next set promoting something different.
Christians sometimes make use of the illustration that stairway to hell is a winding staircase so that the person cannot see the destination. When politicians refuse to discuss the implications of their policy, or its destination, we can read their spirit. Christians are warned to test the spirits whether they are of God. Jesus warned us that some men love darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil.
Why do you want out of the EU?
We believe in small government and aim to reduce bureaucracy.
The European Union is too diverse in language, culture and religion to operate effectively as a unified governmental body.
- A former president of the European Investment Bank, said that: “The purpose of the single currency is to prevent the encroachment of Anglo-Saxon values in Europe.”
Its current structures are not sufficiently democratic.
The EU governs too much by diktat and its decision-making process is not sufficiently transparent nor accountable to the electorate.
- Paul Mason, commenting on the Italian sovereign debt crisis on Newsnight 9/11/2011, said that joining the euro surrendered sovereignty and now people are seeing how much democracy has been surrendered as well.
- The European Arrest Warrant contravenes our doctrine of habeus corpus against arbitrary court action. European ideas of law differ markedly from the UK historic ideas about innocent until proved guilty. The presumption of guilt is beginning to take over in the UK not only through trial by media but even in our political and legal processes. Retrospective application of law is another innovation to UK legislation, which is manifestly unjust but it is being given legal sanction.
Its current structures are not sustainable. Bernard Connolly explained long ago in his book The Rotten Heart of Europe, 1995, why the diverse European national policies will turn the European vision into a nightmare. One size does not fit all. The strains on the euro are being played out before our eyes. There is a desperate attempt to save the euro? Why? The bailouts are simply throwing good money after bad. Robert Peston says of the European Central Bank (ECB) buying of Italian and Spanish bonds: “many will see the ECB as taking a serious credit risk in bailing out two financially over-stretched governments and as behaving contrary to the rules of prudent central banking.” As part of the second bailout deal for Greece, private bondholders were invited to participate because the debt is becoming unmanageable. The current European leaders do not know how to manage this crisis, and we are forced to watch them lurch from crisis to crisis until people will say, Enough is enough. Who can say what will happen at that point? It is significant that in Britain there are a large number of petitions for the restoration of the death penalty. There is a danger of a right-wing backlash as this profligacy unwinds itself. We need Christian politicians more than ever.
Update 19/8/2011: “Increasing numbers of analysts are questioning the survival of the euro due to the political tensions.”
27/10/2011 The crisis meeting of European leaders, at the last hour, have voted to increase the European Financial Stability Facility (the European emergency rescue fund) because of the expected default of Greece on its debt and the likely contagion on Italian and French banks. Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, called this the greatest crisis to face Europe since the second world war. This is where the European dream has reached, and the difficulty that 27 member states in the EU and 17 member states in the euro to have a common policy is made manifest for all to see. Either there will be greater political integration or member states will leave the euro. The BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) may yet help to bail out the EU’s precarious, indebted position, and the price of this will be the diminishing of western hegemony. Just as climate change is God’s method of knocking reluctant international heads together, so the sovereign debt crisis may yet be used to introduce a more equitable international scene between nations and the world at large. The profligacy of southern European countries is being reigned in, but at the price on future generations. God is “visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation” (Exodus 20:5).
- Anatole Kaletsky: “The Rotten Heart of Europe, still stands as the most intellectually persuasive, economically coherent and politically prescient account yet published of the development of European institutions in the 1990s. The Times, 11/2/1999
- Auditor Paul van Buitenen was suspended by the Commission following his making public allegations of widespread corruption within the EU.
Its structures are hard to understand
Barack Obama said at the G20 on 4/11/2011: “There are a lot of institutions here in Europe” and that he got “a crash course” in these. The BBC reporter Paul Mason said on Newsnight the same night: “We are all trying to understand the complexities of Europe.” If the top politician in the world, and a veteran and seasoned BBC reporter cannot understand the EU, how can the ordinary UK voter understand it? If we cannot understand, why do we invest in it? It is as risky as investment bankers who do not understand the products in which they invested.
Its legal framework is interfering with our democracy
EU legislation and international law is forcing change upon the UK without the wishes of the people. The electorate has no power to change this as these effects are supra-national and cannot be prevented by our MPs and MEPs.
- Polygamy and the redefining of marriage is being forced upon the UK by foreign and international legislation being recognised by UK law.
All in it together attitude. Instead of acknowledging mistakes and changing direction, siren voices call out for more unity and more integration in the face of the eurozone sovereign debt crisis. “Many see the euro - in its current guise at least - to be sustainable only if the euro countries are prepared to issue common eurobonds. Such an “all for one, one for all” debt issuance would require great change in terms of control over national economic policy and fiscal budgets among euro member states.” In other words, more political integration.
Several years after the credit crisis we have still not recapitalised our banks as we are held back by the European Union. The Irish Republic, Portugal and Greece have needed bailouts and now European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has warned that the sovereign debt crisis is spreading to Italy and Spain, the third and fourth largest economies of the eurozone. Commenting on the recently negotiated European Financial Stability Fund (EFSF) he complained of “the undisciplined communication and the complexity and incompleteness of the 21 July package.” He does not think it is being implemented fast enough. The very name of the EFSF is an admission that the euro is not stable, because the European Union itself is not stable. Meanwhile in Italy, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has pledged a constitutional provision to enforce a balanced budget to try to increase confidence in the Italian economy. What a pity that a balanced budget never featured so strongly before!
Sovereign debt. Government debt is the next phase in the economic crisis. The focus on 5/8/2011 was Standard & Poor’s reducing the US’s AAA rating for the first time in its history to AA+ but along with this is the fear of sovereign debt default both in the US and the eurozone. “Just like the awakening in 2007 to the idea that many of the housing loans and associated financial products were worthless, so there is a growing fear that a number of financially overstretched governments, especially in the eurozone, will not be able to repay their debts in full.” Robert Peston Business editor, BBC News. The Royal Bank of Scotland has made a £733m provision for its exposure to Greek government bonds, which the BBC reported that RBS did not expect to recover. Societe Generale, France’s second-biggest bank, has made a similar provision. The EU’s economic affairs commissioner Olli Rehn told BBC radio that it will release a report later this year on the possibility of issuing eurobonds - that is, debt backed by all 17 countries rather than individual nations. The thinking seems to be: if one goes down, let’s all go down together. After the sub-prime mortgage crisis, then the banking crisis, and now the sovereign debt crisis, the next phase will be the credit card debt crisis from millions of consumers who have become used to a hand-out society, or “addiction to debt” as China has called the US attitude. Gordon Brown says that the eurozone summit on Greece’s latest bailout will be seen as a “huge missed opportunity, the turning point at which history failed to turn” condemning millions of European citizens “to unemployment in a wasted decade”. He says: “One of the reasons I opposed Britain joining the euro was that the euro had no crisis prevention or crisis resolution mechanism, and no line of accountability when things went wrong.” So there you have it.
Xinhua, the Chinese State news agency, said unless the US cut its “gigantic military expenditure and bloated welfare costs,” another downgrade would be inevitable. It called for the printing of US dollars to be supervised internationally and repeated China’s contention that a new global reserve currency might be needed. The Chinese have been pulling out of the US dollars at a record rate during the past twelve months.
At the very moment when the euro could have taken over from the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency, EU politicians have been found wanting. The ineffectiveness of US politicians has been criticised by Standard and Poor’s in their report of its downgrade of the US from AAA to AA+, in which it complained about the political brinkmanship of US politics. In other words, playing politics with the economy. European leaders have not been much better. We need Christian politicians who can articulate Christian principles of financial prudence.
While the EU interferes with our finances, its own financial accountability is questionable. Its Court of auditors has not certified its annual accounts since 1994. While this is attributed to high standards rather than corruption, many people are mystified why such a situation has been allowed to continue for almost two decades.
EU debt. “A real look at European debt, which is far greater than the narrowly reported official deficits, bodes badly. Bailouts are being affected by the imposition of rising and unsustainable interest rates […] Will the EU survive? Of course it will. It has succeeded in quelling thousands of years of internal warfare. But the euro and current EU structure – well, that’s another matter”. Former US Ambassador to the EU, Alfred Kingon.
Into the double dip recession: the chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said that the world’s economy is “deeply into the danger zone” because of risks from the eurozone. IMF chief Christine Lagarde has warned of a ‘1930s moment’.
The daily cost of the EU. Tax-payers’ money is going to paying massive EU fines. This is in addition to the £40million we give to Brussels every day.
Too much money, Parliamentary time and judicial time is wasted on EU regulations.
The EU Budget was increased in Oct 2010 when national budgets were being cut.
The Commonwealth betrayal. Many people have forgotten that in our desire to join the European common market the UK betrayed its trading relationships with the Commonwealth countries. It is commonly said that Europe is our biggest market – but that was our choice. Ever since, the EU debate has been business-led, to the neglect of the social consequences. In writing on Europe’s missed opportunity and “a wasted decade”, Gordon Brown postulates “a ‘global Europe’ plan – a determination that Europe stops looking inwards and start to look outwards to export markets in the eight fastest growing economies (India, China, Brazil, Russia, Indonesia, Turkey, Korea and Mexico) that will generate most of the worlds new growth. Today, only 7.5 percent of Europe’s exports go to these fast rising economies, which will create 70 percent of the world’s growth.” In other words, our focus on Europe has been short-sighted and we need a global vision.
The UK should have a free trade agreement with Europe.
The manner in which European law is being imposed on the UK is unsatisfactory.
Its regulations are over-bearing, and it is too big a behemoth to allow changes easily. For example, Chancellor George Osborne is considering not raising the fuel price tax in the March 2011 Budget, but Danny Alexander is chasing all round Europe to negotiate a reduction in fuel from European ministers by 5p for remote and rural communities, during which time the price has risen by more than 5p. Which is easier? There is not enough flexibility in the current European system. The Christian Party sees the answer to be closer to home.
75% of our laws are made in Brussels.
The human rights of prisoners is under review, and when it was decided that slopping out was against human rights, instead of giving us time to bring our law into line with this decision, prisoners were given £67million in compensation. This is one example of the retrospective application of law which is creeping into British society. It does not matter if you obey the law today - if Europe rules our laws are wrong, we become transgressors even although we obeyed the law today, and we have to suffer the consequences. This applies to individuals and also to our Governments.
The European Court of Human Rights decided that prisoners serving less than four years should have the right to vote. Whatever one’s view on this, our government must jump to attention and organise it speedily before the Scottish Parliament election in May 2011. Protestation about administrative difficulties will not stand in the way of prisoners seeking compensation. So do you want legislation formed by a number of judges somewhere in Europe or by our own politicians in Parliament? Who exactly are we expected to obey? Today’s laws made in Parliament, or tomorrow’s law overturned by Europe? This brings the law into disrepute as we do not know whose law to obey. Christians are used to this dilemma because we have always faced legislation which contradicts God’s law, but now we have Parliament at odds with European legislation. How long can this tension continue? Something has to give - and it should be Europe because of its lack of democratic accountability.
Article Six of the Lisbon Treaty states that the European Convention on Human Rights “shall constitute general principles of the Union’s law”, so that the Tory Government’s attempts to escape from the Convention by means of a British Bill of Rights will be an ineffective fig leaf.
Many people are concerned about European justice. The case of Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder, has highlighted the weakness in the “tick box” approach to the European Arrest Warrant (EAW). The EAW does not allow a person to prove their innocence prior to its implementation, but the EAW acts as a rapid method of transferring a suspect to another jurisdiction, which raises many questions: 1. the injustice in being removed from one’s native soil to defend oneself in a foreign jurisdiction; 2. the assumption that all EU justice systems are satisfactory, which is already being called into question, along with many other European institutions; 3. the overthrow of habeus corpus, a bed-rock of British justice since Magna Carta, 4. the abandonment of presumption of innocence until proven guilty; and 5. it is equivalent to an automatic refusal of bail. There have been very many EAWs used and examples of gross incompetence and abuse.
European Courts are being given authority like the mediaeval papacy. We don’t want either popes of Rome nor European Courts telling us how we should think. The former used to excommunicate and deliver over to the secular power to punish with fines or death; the latter is now taking on the mantle of inquisitor general of thought and behaviour. The proper role of courts is to adjudicate disputes between parties not to teach them how to think. This attitude is infecting the judicial system and a judge in a British court recently said in a case involving homosexual rights that religion is out of date. Which Act of Parliament was he interpreting when he said so?
What is wrong with our education system?
The malaise in our education system is not the fault of our hard working teachers. For decades teachers have had to wrestle with the grandiose plans of each successive Education Secretary’s ideas for the curriculum. Policies change too frequently, just as it does in other departments. Successive political parties complain about the failure of our educational system by highlighting the deficiencies of school leavers - school leavers who have been failed by mis-guided ideological experiments in education. The average child spends eleven or so years in school, during which time successive Education Secretaries will have changed teachers’ working brief a number of times leading to loss of morale among teachers.
When the Education Secretary says that we need to improve the basic skills of reading, writing and maths, this is testimony enough that recent governments and opposition parties have failed to improve the education of the nation’s children. The malaise in our education system is manifest. What has our education system come to when employers don’t know if they can trust exam results and resort to their own methods of determining how to evaluate employees? Employers are unwilling to take on school-leavers because they are such an untested and uncertain entity.
We have governments who cannot run countries (Syria, Greece, Italy as well as Libya, Egypt, and the usual list of unaccountable governments), bankers who cannot run banks, schools which cannot educate pupils, parents who cannot rear children, carers who cannot care for the elderly, jurors who cannot keep to the rules, courts and politicians at loggerheads with each other, politicians who cannot draft comprehensive laws, and the list goes on.
Our society has dumbed down. Children know football scores, celebrity figures and the latest albums, proving that they have plenty of brain power, but they do not know their own language, their own history nor culture, and how to show respect to their neighbour. Our schools are failing our children, the rising generation and our society.
Instead of concentration on the three R’s – reading, writing and arithmetic – schools are being used to sexualise our children. What has homosexuality got to do with mathematics? So why are homosexuality issues being proposed for Maths, Science and Geography lessons? 1+1 homosexual adults does not equal two, three, four or five children?
It is a manifest sign of our failed education system when the Holyrood government has a consultation on changing the definition of marriage. Which part of marriage do they not understand? Have they not been taught to look up dictionaries?
School children are being targetted to influence the next generation. With the abolition of Clause 28 (Section 2A in Scotland), the law prohibiting the promotion of homosexuality in schools and which forbade local authorities to “intentionally promote homosexuality”, we have reared a generation of young people who have been misled into thinking that the homosexual debate is a debate about equality. It is passing strange that the Scottish Youth Parliament was used to kick start the push for legalising homosexual ‘marriage’ in Scotland.
The humanist lobby has often claimed that religion should be kept out of science, but is the homosexual worldview now to begin pervading the whole of our educational system? Yes, if Stonewall has its way. This homosexual lobby group, plans to send training packs into every primary school in Britain.
Rather it is time that the humanist agenda was challenged. It is time for Christians to vote to stop the marginalisation of Christianity.
However, it is not only Stonewall, but the Scottish Liberal Democrats manifesto advocates that “gay issues be taught in schools.” The BBC publicised the sanitised version of the Lib Dem Manifesto but The Sun drew attention to the small print. At this rate, your primary school children will be taught to explore their homosexual tendencies.
The Scout Association wishes to recruit more homosexuals, presumably to represent the 1% of the population who call themselves homosexual. The Scouts’ new teenage sex education programme plans to teach young Scouts to “feel what a condom is like”. What is the driving force behind this? Is it evidence of homosexual manipulation of yet another group in our society?
- Schools are the battleground of the future.
- 18 Jan 2012: EU using schools to influence schoolchildren.
- 26 Jan 2012: government data published as part of secondary school league tables suggests the majority of schools are failing struggling pupils.
- Feb 2012: David Cameron and Ed Miliband support homosexual agenda for primary school children as a good thing.
What is wrong with Scottish Labour?
The main problem is the lack of ideas. Just as Tony Blair adopted Margaret Thatcher’s policies in order to gain power, so Scottish Labour under Iain Gray has cynically adopted SNP policies in the run-up to the Scottish election in 2011.
The series of U-turns include:
1. Labour has changed its mind on tuition fees, abandoning a student contribution and adopting the SNP position of free tuition.
2. Iain Gray has recently adopted the SNP Council Tax freeze “for the next two years”.
3. In the 2007 Scottish election campaign, Labour wanted to close Accident and Emergency Departments and the SNP fought to keep them open. Labour has now changed its mind and promised to keep them.
4. Labour opposed the minimum pricing of alcohol, and we await their U-turn on this. 14 Mar 2012: true to form, Labour abstained on the proposal for minimum pricing.
- 28 Nov 2012: it is now the Tories’ turn to copy the SNP. After the Scottish Tories resisted the minimum pricing of alcohol, English Tories are now proposing to follow suit.
So what is the point in voting Labour? Political commentators say that the difference between the Manifestos will be so bland that there will be little to debate and for voters to chose. Voters, of course, will have the opportunity to vote for something very different in voting for the Scottish Christian Party - a new voice in the Scottish Parliament.
As for the recent Labour Government:
1. Gordon Brown ruined British pension schemes with his “stealth tax” raids on pension schemes.
2. Gordon Brown sold 400 metric tonnes of our gold reserves at rock bottom prices and bought euros. Gold is now riding high.
- 21 Mar 2012: George Osborne said in his budget that our current gold reserves are £11bn. This does not include the 400 tons of gold sold some years ago for £2bn, which would now be worth six times than value. This is a reference to one of Gordon Brown’s most disastrous decisions in his time as Chancellor of the Exchequer.
3. Gordon Brown said that he would abolish boom and bust. This is the same man who deregulated the banks which allowed the boom to take off - with the inevitable bust following.
4. The Treasury was bankrupt when Labour left office. Liam Byrne, former Chief Secretary to the Treasury, left a note which said: “I’m afraid there is no money.” Labour left the country with the largest deficit in the developed world, 9% of GDP, the biggest structural deficit in history.
What is wrong with the Lib Dems?
The Lib Dems have been discredited by their ConDem alliance and their U-turn on their Manifesto pledges. They have become the ‘fall guys’ for the Tories’ cuts. They broke their promises in the 2010 General Election on:
Student tuition fees
Public spending cuts
The Lib Dems demanded the AV referendum as one of the prices of coalition government, from which they hoped to benefit. The Referendum cost £91million and the AV system was voted down by the electorate in May 2011.
Danny Alexander, MP, once told an audience: Vote for us and keep the Tories out.
The result of this betrayal of their own voters can be seen on this Poll Tracker, where the Lib Dem support collapses from 28% at the General Election in May 2010, briefly ahead of Labour at 27%, to around 10% and even single figures.
It is questionable to what extent the Lib Dems have moderated the Tory policy on the NHS, the EU, etc. In an alliance with Labour they might even have locked Britain into the euro by now - but that is for the Lib Dem supporter to agonise over. However the Lib Dem leader, Nick Clegg, had a significant influence on David Cameron to push forward the agenda to redefine marriage. This is a terrible legacy to leave this country, and the only way to save Nick Clegg from this legacy in time and eternity is for the Westminster and Holyrood Parliaments to reject it out of hand.
What is wrong with the Greens?
The Scottish Christian Party agrees with the basic idea of the Green Party – care for the environment and a conscientious accountability for Earth’s resources. Self-sustainability is the first topic of our Manifesto in which we say that we will encourage in-built continuity and flexibility, rather than built-in obsolescence in public capital spending projects.
However, apart from particular policies, there are two problems with the Green’s general philosophy.
1. Some of their supporters have a semi-religious attitude to Mother Earth and this comes through in their agenda. This can be illustrated by the opposition of environmentalists to the provision of adequate fire-breaks in Australian forests which resulted in the massive loss of forests when fires broke out some years ago. This shows that ideology can supercede pragmatism with devastating effects.
The Greens exhibit the same ideological attitude with respect to nuclear power, and they reverse the argument in return to say that pragmatism can have devastating effects as well - which is true. However Green ideology does not include the Christian belief that although man’s stewardship of the Earth may prove faulty, yet God is Lord of all the Earth.
Although they employ the rainbow to symbolise their attitude to environmental issues, the Christian use of the rainbow is to remind us that God will not destroy the Earth as long as man is upon it (Genesis 8:22). Green ideology does not have this faith. The Christian agenda works towards global peace through international co-operation, and we believe it will be attained, whatever disasters occur along the way.
Global warming is not only man-made, but it is God-made. It can be viewed as an opportunity - and it is God’s way of knocking international heads together who would not normally speak to one another nor act collectively. We should be thankful for this as it nudges political leaders in the direction of international co-operation.
2. The Green agenda includes the Pink agenda as several of its most prominent politicians are activists for lesbian, homosexual, bi-sexual, transexual and intersexual rights. This includes the two Green MSPs who were in the last Holyrood Parliament. Patrick Harvie is an Honorary Associate of the National Secular Society, Honorary Vice-President of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association and a board member of the Glasgay! Festival. He is the first openly bisexual party leader in the United Kingdom. His campaigning against Clause 28 led to his interest in politics and then joining the Green Party.
Patrick Harvie, who is standing as a List candidate in the Glasgow Region, will actively pursue legalising homosexual marriage when it arrives on the Scottish Parliament agenda. He was the seventh MSP elected in the Glasgow Region in 2007, and if enough Christians had voted for the Scottish Christian Party in 2007, they would have prevented this Pink voice entering the Scottish Parliament. Don’t make the same mistake a second time. Vote for a Christian rather than Patrick Harvie. If Christians do not challenge him then he will spearhead homosexual marriage in the Scottish Parliament. He is vulnerable only to a Christian vote as the main Parties are not opposing homosexual marriage. If the Scottish Christian Party beat Patrick Harvie for this seventh MSP placing in the Glasgow Region, it will send out a strong signal that Christian values are back on the agenda in Scotland.
The other Green MSP was Robin Harper who retired from Holyrood in May 2011. Harper is a patron of many organisations including LGBT Youth Scotland, an organisation dedicated to the inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people in the life of Scotland.
The first and only Green MP elected to Westminster is Caroline Lucas who was elected in Brighton, Pavilion in May 2010. The homosexual community proudly advertises Brighton as the ‘gay capital’ of Britain.
One is justified in concluding that a vote for the Green Party is a vote for the promotion of homosexuality. Green is a poorly disguised Pink.
Rather than Green, Pink, or even Red, Yellow or Blue - voters should vote Purple for the Scottish Christian Party - not purple prose, but purple for the Lordship of Christ and a balanced approach to public life. For the colour of one’s language and politics see the colour of our politics.
Why do you have so much to say about homosexuality?
It happens to be one of the main issues of the day. We speak on the issues of the day, especially when there is no effective political Opposition on this subject. Whereas many homosexuals are happy to live and let live, the current agenda is driven by the militant homosexual lobby who:
2. are targetting the public expression of Christianity such as displaying a cross.
3. The next phase of their campaign is to use the Scottish Parliament to legalise homosexual marriage. They want to redefine marriage to include homosexual relationships. “Woe to them that decree unrighteous decrees” Isaiah 10:1. If the homosexual lobby get their way, they will want to teach children in primary schools that homosexual expression is normal behaviour. Already Stonewall has supplied teaching packs to primary schools. Tory Party policy used to support Clause 28 (Section 2A in Scotland), the law prohibiting the promotion of homosexuality in schools, but David Cameron has reversed this, apologized for it, and put a gagging order on the Tories, with the consequence that the Scottish Tories have been struck dumb. As for whether Christians who have Biblical views on homosexuality are welcome in the Conservative Party, Ms Annabel Goldie, leader of the Scottish Tory MSPs, said: “David Cameron has made clear that the Conservative Party is a modern party for the 21st century.” This demonstrates a spineless servility to the leader of the Party and that Christians cannot rely upon the Tories to fight for the traditional family nor for the natural view of marriage.
- Mike Weatherley, the Conservative MP for Hove, has written to the Prime Minister calling for churches to be banned from holding marriages if they refuse to perform civil partnerships for gay couples. Again, the subject of unequal equality is used, which is deceiving and beguiling our uneducated politicians.
- The full text of the letter is published by the homosexual website Pink News.
- “People say, The way of the Lord is not equal. But as for them, their way is not equal,” says the Lord (Ezekiel 33:17)
Labour and the Lib Dems are no help in this battle. The Greens have long championed homosexual marriage. The SNP promised a platform to the homosexual lobby and pledged to discuss homosexual marriage in its Manifesto. This has been followed up with a Scottish Government consultation on redefining marriage to include homosexual couples.
4. Education and schools: the next phase will be to use this redefined concept of marriage to teach schoolchildren to experiment with homosexual instincts. The humanist lobby has often claimed that religion should be kept out of science, but the homosexual worldview will then pervade the whole of our educational system if Stonewall has its way. This homosexual lobby group plans to send training packs into every primary school in Britain. However, it is not only Stonewall, but the Scottish Liberal Democrats manifesto advocates that “gay issues be taught in schools.” The BBC publicised the sanitised version of the Lib Dem Manifesto but The Sun drew attention to the small print. At this rate, your primary school children will be taught to explore homosexual tendencies.
5. However, the real issue is not homosexuality but rather freedom of speech. The homosexual lobby is openly trying to stop Christian expression of its belief, and the British Humanist Association is not far behind. They have persuaded the ill-informed leadership of the main political parties to follow suit. The topic began as seeking equality, reminding us of Animal Farm by George Orwell, but now it has changed into coersion because homosexuals demand people to accept their lifestyle. This is intolerance and stokes up trouble for the future, ignoring the history of Britain’s struggle for civil and religious liberties which resulted in the democracy of the modern era. Westminster is the mother of Parliaments but we will soon have the mother of all rows if this intolerance continues unabated.
6. The homosexual agenda is a moving one. It began with a campaign for decriminalisation of what is done in private by consenting adults; moved on to toleration; then to equality and fairness; then acceptance; then the confessional “Coming Out” phase; then the celebration phase “Gay Pride”; and it is now in the coersion phase; it plans to move on to the paedophilia phase soon. This process has been imitated by Richard Dawkins in his aggressive atheism, especially the “coming out” phase. “Coming out” is an imitation of the Christian doctrine of openly confessing Christ, and it is for lack of this Christian witness in public life that we have humanists celebrating their advances. It is a fitting chastisement of an effete Christian church. The same progression can be seen in the advance of humanistic values in the Christian Church. First a heterodox doctrine is tolerated, and within a generation it is the norm, and then it is imposed upon those who do not accept it - in the well-known display of “there are none so illiberal as the liberals” or as intolerant as those shouting tolerance. In order to lock in their gains, these innovators coerce the consciences of others who tolerated them, until they compromise, fall silent or are driven out of the denomination. Examples are the ordination of women, and now the ordination of homosexuals in the national churches of Scotland and England. The same shifting agenda happens in politics, which is why people do not trust politicians building their promises on shifting sand. One government cannot hold a successive government to its promises, so that the most solemn promises are only meaningful for as long as the length of that Parliament - or even shorter if one is a Liberal Democrat.
- In the Liberal Democrats Party Election Broadcast on the eve of their 2010 Election Manifesto launch, Nick Clegg spoke of the broken promises put forward by the Labour party and Conservatives, and that a vote for the Lib Dems means a vote for hope and an end to broken promises. The Lib Dems have now disabled linking to this broadcast.
This is not correct and we discuss tolerance and coercion here in our Manifesto. One tolerates someone or something of which one does not approve. Christians do this all the time. On the other hand, the aggressive homosexual lobby do not tolerate Christian doctrine, and it wants to coerce Christians into saying and believing what homosexuals believe, and even to teach it in their Christian schools.
We address all forms of sexual immorality, but adulterers are not trying to make faith schools and churches approve of adultery, whereas homosexual lobbyists are trying to make faith schools and churches approve of homosexuality. People may want to ask themselves if marriage will survive this sexual free-for-all being promoted by the humanistic lobby. The path to hell is not only paved with a thousand good intentions, but it is a winding descending spiral staircase of steps so that one does not see the destination.
It is not uncommon for people to misunderstand Christian doctrine which teaches us to love sinners while hating the sin. This applies to all forms of immorality. Love manifests itself by warning sinners against sin. Hatred manifests itself in giving enough rope to hang oneself. Rather Scripture teaches us: “You shall not secretly hate your neighbour; but you should reprove him and not suffer sin on him” Leviticus 19:17. Warning against sin and its consequences is a manifestation of love; and the greatest manifestation of love was Christ’s making atonement for sin 1Jn 4:10. “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” John 3:16.
What is the difference between Purple, Green and Pink?
What’s in a colour?
Quite a lot. The Scottish Christian Party will bring some colour into the grey debates in Holyrood.
When Deputy Labour Party leader Harriet Harman drew attention to Danny Alexander’s ginger coloured hair and unfairly compared him to a “ginger rodent”, it highlights the colour of one’s language as well as the colour of one’s politics.
Harriet Harman got it wrong. Danny Alexander is not a rodent, but after watching the number of Liberal Democrat U-turns, she might have opted for a chameleon which has the ability to change its colours depending on the background.
You do not need to vote blue, nor red, and certainly not yellow nor green (a poorly disguised pink), but you can have the whole lot rolled into a balanced composite - the purple of the Scottish Christian Party, without the purple prose, but pointing to the royalty of king Jesus.
The Christian Party believes that it represents the best balance of the distinctives which characterise the other main parties - the financial prudence of the Tories and their conservative instincts, the social conscience of Labour and their concern for the working man, our paramount concern for religious and civil liberties seen in the Lib Dems and their regard for freedom of speech and the individual, and the care for the environment and conscientious accountability for the use of the Earth’s resources seen in the Greens. So purple has it.
But what about the SNP? The SNP Government has failed to give a vision for the north of Scotland. The Scottish Christian Party speaks for the whole of Scotland and has an integrated vision for the infrastructure of Scotland. The SNP has not told us what will happen to the Christian Constitution of Scotland in their Independent Scotland.
Rather than Green, Pink, or even Red, Yellow or Blue - voters should vote Purple for the Scottish Christian Party - not purple prose, but purple for the Lordship of Christ and a balanced approach to public life.
For the colour of our language and politics see the colour of our politics.
What are your views on Government cuts?
1. Do you believe there is an alternative to the pace and scale of cuts in public services? Yes; we think they are too quick, and risk a double dip recession.
19 Aug 2011: SCP expect a double dip recession.
25 Apr 2012: the double dip recession has arrived.
2. Would you ever use Holyrood’s powers to vary local income tax and under what circumstances? Yes; after proper public consultation.
What are your views on the rich and taxes?
There is nothing morally wrong with money, riches, nor being rich. It is the love of money which is the problem, and the pride, self-importance and sense of self-security of rich people. The Bible does not teach robbing rich people through excessive taxation by the politics of jealousy, but it teaches how rich people should use their money to the glory of God, the good of mankind, the peace of their own conscience and to improve their reputation for goodwill 1Tim 6:6-11,17-19.
Do you believe in local democracy for the delivery of local public services?
Yes. For example, we oppose the re-organisation of police forces into a centralised national police service and we support the election of local police chiefs. We need separate police forces to investigate problems in other ones. This is justified by the recent problems in the Metropolitican Police.
We believe in small government, cutting out bureaucracy and quangos, with a proper balance between central and local government.
Local knowledge contributes to local efficiencies which should be encouraged by retention of savings locally. Central government should facilitate local government and maintain standards.
What are your policies regarding renewable energy?
We will integrate renewable energy projects in the north and west, a new container transhipment hub for Europe at Scapa Flow in Orkney to capitalise on international trade, and the development of the road and rail infrastructure of northern Scotland to improve Scotland’s global connectivity as part of our long-term plan for developing the northern end of Scotland to the benefit of the whole of Scotland.
The section on renewable energy in our 2011 Manifesto: “We will take steps to lessen, where possible, the building of large scale hydro-electric schemes and onshore wind farms in predominantly tourism-orientated areas. We will encourage research and development of small-scale renewable energy resources such as micro-hydro schemes to benefit local communities directly, enhancing eco-tourism potential.”
Which is your favoured renewable energy source and why?
Tidal energy; then solar and wave; and we have yet to be convinced that wind farms are worth pursuing on an industrial scale, although there may be a case for small and remote community schemes as a means of power and income generation. Evidence is emerging that the subsidies is creating a false market in wind turbines, is damaging the tourist industry and jobs, and that turbines pose a health and safety risk. These subsidies are driving up electricity prices as about 18-20% of your electricity bill is going towards subsidies on wind turbines. In October 2011 about one in three homes in Scotland are now in fuel poverty as a result of this policy. Geothermal is worth investigating but there are still safety and research issues to be resolved.
Why has the government squandered £100m on wind turbine subsidy, but done nothing about a Severn tidal barrier? The latter would provide about a quarter of our energy needs, whereas 300 square miles of wind turbines standing shoulder to shoulder are needed to produce the energy from one nuclear power station. Wind power appears to be government tokenism to appear to be doing something. Meanwhile Alex Salmond chases after the latest initiative to get media coverage - encouraging Donald Trump to build his golf course with the suggestion that there would no off-shore wind farm, but now supporting the very same wind farm.
We expect the solution to come from technology, which has thankfully provided solutions in the past. Whereas tidal and solar energy are part of the long-term solution, the real solution is in nuclear fusion rather than nuclear fission, although it is worth noting that more people die every year from coal mining than from nuclear accidents.
What is your policy on marriage?
We support traditional marriage and will fight against the proposed redefining of marriage. Marriage is being air-brushed out of the picture.
Are you of the opinion that civil partnerships should be treated as marriage?
No. The Scottish Christian Party is alone in opposing the redefinition of marriage to include civil partnerships. The homosexual agenda wants to redefine marriage to include homosexual relationships in order to legalise homosexual marriage. We believe that civil partnership should be redefined to be a civil contract which has nothing to do with sexuality.
Should there be a referendum on changing the definition of marriage?
The Scottish Christian Party agrees that more use should be made of referenda, particularly when other elections are taking place, and this has been stated in our Manifesto. However we had strong reservations about the AV Referendum and the Scottish Christian Party does not think that a referendum is adequate in this discussion about redefining marriage.
We note that Gordon Wilson, former leader of the SNP from 1979 to 1990 and current Chairman of Dundee-based Christian think tank Solas, and its Director the Rev. David Robertson, have called for a referendum in Solas’ submission on this subject, but the reasons they have given are very brief: 1. they do not trust our current set of politicians and 2. if Scottish Independence merits a referendum, then the separation from over 1500 years of Christian teaching on marriage merits a referendum.
We do not think that either reason stacks up. 1. The first reason applies to many other issues, and the Scottish Christian Party answer to this reason is to provide Christian politicians. The Scottish public were warned that this was coming prior to the last Holyrood election, but they chose not to have a distinctly Christian voice in Parliament. We have other solutions for this problem also. However, if people can no longer trust their politicians, then change the politicians. Vote for the Scottish Christian Party.
2. The second reason also applies to many other issues, and while marriage is very, very fundamental to the well-being of our society, there is no proof that a referendum will actually accomplish what the Christian community wants to accomplish. The debate has gone beyond the usefulness of a referendum to asking how one can restrain a dominant political party having its way. The anti-Iraq war demonstrations did not stop Westminster voting to go to war; the result of Brian Souter’s referendum was overwhelmingly against what was ultimately allowed in legislation; Westminster MPs have repeatedly voted against the wishes of the people for capital punishment. Rather, the problem goes beyond politics and referenda. The attack on marriage is alarming, but it is a symptom of something more radical, and a referendum is not the solution.
The political problem is the manner in which party politics can control parliamentary procedures and voting to such an extent that they can ignore the wishes of the people, and the party whip system overrides the wishes of individual parliamentarians. These spineless parliamentarians buckle because they do not have the principle nor backbone to stand against it. “A shiver ran along the back benches, looking for a spine to run up.” However it is more than a political problem; it also one of media corruption and power, demoralising education and the cult of celebrity. All of these problems can be solved by a return to Christian principles, but like our economic crisis, there are piecemeal solutions proposed. A referendum, whatever merits may be in it, is a piecemeal contribution to a solution, and it is too flimsy an instrument upon which to trust for so important a topic as the undermining of marriage.
Scotland needs a Reformer - someone who will give a lead to the nation and who will lead it back to the paths of righteousness which once exalted our nation.
The fundamental problem with a referendum is that just as the government cannot redefine marriage, neither can the people, no matter how big the majority. At best a referendum will show that the Government is out of touch, but at worse it might give credence to the idea that morality can be determined by majorities. The humanistic lobby has been trying for a long time to replace the sovereignty of God with the sovereignty of the people. We need Christian politicians, but just as David Cameron has gagged the Scottish Tories, and the Church of Scotland General Assembly has gagged itself with a self-imposed embargo on discussing sexuality until its theological commission reports, so Scottish Christians have gagged themselves by voting for MSPs who will follow their party managers in this unholy party alliance. It is time for Christians to awaken out of sleep.
It is with difficulty that Christians are seeing the need for a Christian Party. Old habits die hard. However, it is the inevitable outworking of Reformation in the UK. In the 1960s, political action began with a few single-issue parachurch organisations. These multiplied and filled gaps which the national churches were abandoning and which smaller churches could not fill. As institutional churches have declined in size and influence, the parachurch groups are growing in size and influence. In recent times political lobbying and now Christian defence groups such as the Christian Institute have arisen and are doing more than the institutional church to defend individual Christians. However this is fire-fighting - necessary, but not a solution. We need to change the laws in the first place, and this can be done only by politicians. Christians need to be interested and involved in politics for the good of the country. The Scottish Christian Party sees a role for various Christian groups, but laws cannot be improved without direct political action, and the Christian church fails in its duty to the nation if it neglects this. Instead of attempting to persuade reluctant, ungodly politicians to do things that they do not want to do, or writing letters to such, Christians should have their own sympathetic representatives in parliament in the shape of Christian politicians who are not muzzled as Christians by party managers. Political activists in this country do not write letters to their unsympathetic MPs - they join parties and write letters to sympathetic MPs in their own party. Christians need a Christian party with a Christian Voice in the current ungodly climate.
Only six MSPs attended the debate in Holyrood about The People’s Bible, an initiative on the 400th anniversary of the King James Version of the Bible. So how many Christian MSPs do we have, and how many can we rely on to speak up with a distinctly Christian voice? This is why you and Scotland need the Scottish Christian Party.
What do you mean by a wasted vote?
Intelligent voters can be a problem. Some of them are too clever to tell them anything about the voting process. They think that they know it all already: after all, who needs to teach them how to put a cross on a ballot paper? Answer: it might not be a cross.
The voting system is different in various elections, and for some elections it is impossible to know how you will vote until you know who the candidates are. So the person who says “I know who I am voting for” before the candidates are declared demonstrates 1. that he will vote for his party, come what may; 2. that he is likely to be wasting his vote(s); 3. he does not understand the voting system; and 4. he is too intelligent by half. If the election is for a multi-member council ward, then voting for one candidate simply means that the voter ignores the possibility of chosing and influencing who the two or three other councillors will be. This is not only opting out, but it is manifests ignorance by allowing others to chose the majority of the councillors in your ward, while you vote for only one of the three or four councillors in your ward. If there are four councillors to be elected, you are given four votes; many people only use one of them “for their party”. This is why some parties nominate two or three candidates so that their supporters can maximise their voting power. The person who votes once is wasting two or three of their votes.
A general election uses the first-past-the-post system which many voters think is fair. Rather, it is clear, but it is not fair. This is why different voting systems are being tested.
At this stage, when one begins to explain other systems, many of these voters, who didn’t think that they needed to be told about the voting system, will usually respond: “It’s very complicated! Why didn’t they just keep the first-past-the-post system?” At least they are asking a question, but it is really a rhetorical question meaning, Why don’t they leave it alone? so that I don’t have to think very much about it.
Contrary to their knee-jerk reaction that it is very complicated, 1. it is not; 2. it seems that way because they are not familiar with it; 3. what do you say now to the know-it-all who says “I know who I am voting for” before the nominations on the ballot paper have been declared?
The voting system in any particular election is easy to understand - as long as you realise that it is different from other elections and you need simply to phone your council to ask them what system is being used - or read the literature which will most surely come through your door before you throw it in the waste paper basket. Some people boast that they “put it straight into the bin”, and then complain about politicians. If you don’t vote, don’t complain.
Let us illustrate how the Scottish electoral system operates. It shows how hundreds of thousands of voters wasted their votes.
If you are a Christian supporter of Labour in Glasgow, Central Scotland, West of Scotland or South of Scotland then your vote in the Regional List was completely wasted and counted for nothing towards winning an MSP.
The same is true if you are a Christian supporter of the Liberal Democrats in Highlands and Islands, Lothian or Mid Scotland and Fife. This is because of the way votes are calculated which is explained here.
The SNP made use of this in their huge surge in the 2007 Election, and again in 2011. Their understanding of the system helped them, and it is ignorance of the system which wasted so many other votes.
In South of Scotland Region the SNP won no constituency seat in 2007 but they won five Regional seats. In Central Region they won two constituency seats but still won another five Regional seats giving them a total of seven MSPs from Central Region alone. In total, they won 26 Regional seats and the Tories were a distant second with 13 Regional seats.
If you are a Christian and you voted for your usual party in 2007, it is possible that your vote counted for nothing towards an MSP. You would have wasted your vote if you were:
a Labour voter in Central Scotland - 112,596 wasted votes! This is the record number of wasted votes in a Region. The SNP got 5 Regional MSPs here.
a Labour voter in West of Scotland – 91,725 wasted votes. The SNP got 4 Regional MSPs here.
a Labour voter in South of Scotland – 79,762 wasted votes. The SNP got 5 Regional MSPs here.
a Labour voter in Glasgow – 78,838 wasted votes. The SNP got 4 Regional MSPs here.
Labour watched in frustration in 2007 as the SNP pipped them to the post by one MSP to form the Scottish administration. Read the story here. The SNP won the seventh Regional MSP in Central, West of Scotland, North East Scotland, and Highlands and Islands Regions. If Labour voters in these Regions had given a few thousand of their massively wasted votes to the Christian Party, they would have had a Christian MSP instead of this seventh SNP MSP, and Alex Salmond would not have had the majority of one which gave him the legitimacy to claim the role of First Minister. Labour voters shot themselves in the foot. Don’t let Christian Labour supporters make the same mistake again - vote Scottish Christian Party on 5th May 2011.
What about Glasgow Region? The seventh Regional MSP was won by the Greens who are actively pursuing the homosexual agenda, and it is expected that the next Scottish Parliament will try to legislate for homosexual marriage. Voting for the Scottish Christian Party in Glasgow would have stopped this agenda in its tracts in 2007, but now it has gained momentum. If Christians want to do something about it, it is essential to vote for the Scottish Christian Party on the Regional List in May 2011. If Christians do not act now, it may be too late in five years’ time.
a Lib Dem voter in Highlands and Islands – 37,001 wasted votes. If 4,000 of them were given to the Scottish Christian Party we would have had an MSP and influenced the decision on Alex Salmond being the First Minister.
a Lib Dem voter in Lothian – 36,571 wasted votes.
a Lib Dem voter in Mid Scotland and Fife – 36,195 wasted votes.
a Green voter in North East Scotland – 8148 votes did not get you an MSP.
The bottom line is that 15,100 votes for the Scottish Christian Party in any Region of Scotland would have given you a distinctly Christian Voice for your Region in the Scottish Parliament.
1,928,775 Regional votes were cast, at least 480,836 of which (25%) produced no MSP. Surely it is time for the Christian Voice to be heard in the Scottish Parliament? Which Region will be first to vote a Scottish Christian Party MSP into the Scottish Parliament?
What do you mean by the Regional List, Regional MSP and regional vote?
There are eight Regions in Scotland with a different number of constituencies in each Region. Not only do you vote by constituency, but you also vote by Region. So each voter will be given two ballot papers.
The first (lilac coloured) ballot paper is for a Constituency MSP, just like the system for the General Election to the Westminster Parliament. You vote for the candidate in your Party. So in Inverness and Nairn constituency you will see Donald Boyd. In Motherwell and Wishaw you will see Tom Selfridge. Each will have Scottish Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship” along with their name. The Scottish Christian Party logo will also be there. Put your cross beside this name (not numbers 1,2,3,4). Remember: “Put your cross by the Cross.”
The second (peach coloured) ballot paper is to elect a Party. This is the one which will help the Scottish Christian Party. It is called a Regional Ballot or List, because each Party produces its own list of Regional MSPs to represent a Region of Scotland, not a constituency. This is the ballot paper where many people are confused and blindly vote for their own Party although it will not get them another MSP. This is the opportunity for Christians to exercise their second choice and vote for the Scottish Christian Party. For an explanation how thousands of Christians have wasted their vote, click here.
You will find on this second ballot paper the name Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship” commonly known as the Scottish Christian Party. This is us. The Scottish Christian Party logo will also be there. Put your cross beside this party (not numbers 1,2,3,4). Remember: “Put your cross by the Cross.”
For an explanation of how you can have a Christian Voice in the Scottish Parliament click here.
How does the Proportional Representation “PR” voting system work?
The name and the system seem complicated, but they can be explained rather simply. It is called the d’Hondt formula and it works like this.
Let us take the example of the Regional Vote in the Highlands and Islands in 2003.
First, we need to calculate the proportion of votes for each Party. So we take the total vote for a particular Party in the whole Region, but instead of dividing by the total number of voters (to give the absolute percentage), we divide by the number of seats the Party has already won on the constituency vote, in order to make the final outcome more representative of the whole electorate. This is why every Region counts its constituency votes before its regional votes, so that we know what number by which to divide the Regional vote.
The Conservatives got 26,989 Regional votes. We need to divide this total by the number of Constituency Seats won by the Party. However the Conservatives got no seats, and one cannot divide by 0. So the d’Hondt calculation divides it by the number of Constituency Seats +1. This gives 26,989 Regional votes for the Conservatives.
The Liberal Democrats got 31,655 Regional votes. This is more than the Conservatives, but the Lib Dems also got 5 Constituency (first-past-the-post) Seats. The d’Hondt calculation divides the total by the number of Constituency Seats 5+1. This gives 5,276 votes for the Lib Dems. This number is so small that all the other parties beat it, including the Scottish Socialist Party (who got 9,000 Regional votes).
So the Lib Dems got no Regional Vote seats. Every single one of these 31,655 Lib Dem votes was wasted, although they received more votes than the Conservatives, the Greens and the Scottish Socialist Party. So a Christian Liberal Democrat could have used their vote more wisely to vote for another candidate, and this is why we are urging Christians to give their Regional vote to the Scottish Christian Party.
Thus the first of the seven available Regional Seats went to the Conservatives.
Who gets the second Regional Seat? When we now recalculate the Conservative vote, it collapses down to 13,494 because 26,989 is now divided by 2 (1 Regional Seat +1). This is smaller than Labour who got 37,605 Regional votes, which divided by 2 (=1 Constituency seat +1) = 18,802 votes.
So the second of the seven available Regional Seats went to Labour. But when we recalculate the Labour vote to find out who receives the third Regional Seat, the Labour vote collapses to 12,535 = 37,605 divided by 3 (1 Constituency seat + 1 Regional Seat +1). This is smaller than the Greens who got 13,935 Regional votes divided by (0 Constituency seat +1) = 13,935.
So the third of the seven available Regional Seats went to the Greens.
The seventh of the seven available Regional Seats was won with 9,875 votes in 2003.
The Highland Council explains the voting system of its most recent Holyrood election here: The Highland Council - voting systems.
In 2007, there was a surge in the SNP vote and a collapse in the Green vote (by 5,000) and the Scottish Socialist vote (by 6000). The Scottish Christian Party came from nowhere to gain 6,332 votes, overtaking ten established parties.
However the seventh of the seven available Regional Seats in 2007 was won with 10,663 votes, increased by the SNP surge. This surge is unlikely to be repeated in 2011.
So if each Scottish Christian Party voter can persuade one other Christian to vote for the SCP, we can double 6,332 to over 12,000 votes on 5th May 2011, and this will win us a seat in Holyrood. This is our Brother Andrew campaign.
What is the Alternative Vote (AV) Referendum?
This is a referendum being held on the same day as the Scottish Parliament election on 5th May 2011. Click here to see a youtube video explaining the alternative vote and how to vote on it in the coming election.
There are different types of voting systems for different elections. The SCP prefers the Additional Member System used to elect the Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly for Wales and the London Assembly rather than the AV system.
The essential aspect of the proposed AV system is that the winning party must obtain more than 50% of the vote in order to win. This sounds good, but in practice it will only benefit the major parties. In essence, it is a method of giving the second or third party an opportunity to overtake the first party by using second preference votes from smaller parties. From this point of view, it does not help smaller parties such as the Christian Party. One may question the morality of helping second and third parties to overtake the first - the counter-argument is that the final winner is more representative of the whole population by appealing to more people.
However neither the “Yes to AV campaign” nor the “No to AV campaign” has explained how this will hold governing Parties to account. None of the major parties has suggested a method - because they do not want to be held to account until the next election many years away. The Scottish Christian Party has suggested a way how to hold governments to account.
Some people think that the Alternative Vote will weaken or even break the power of the Party Whip system in Westminster because politicians will be more accountable to their electorate for their seat rather than to the Party Whip for preferment within the Party.
This is only the second ever UK-wide referendum and the Scottish Christian Party considers it to be folly to have a referendum at such short notice.
If AV should prevail, whatever one’s view of the system, then it will allow Christians more opportunity to proclaim their first preference is for Christ’s Lordship; it will show political analysts the strength (or weakness) of Christian feeling; and it will encourage timid Christians to be bolder in proclaiming the Lordship of Christ.
The proposal to change the voting system was rejected by 13,013,123 votes to 6,152,607.
Why do you say that we need the grace of the Gospel in modern society?
Click here for a contemporary assessment of the price of losing Christianity.
In responding to former Prime Minister Tony Blair, David Cameron wrote: “The decline in civility is not confined to a few unruly families and neighbourhoods. It is all around us - on buses and trains, in shops and on the street. The abusiveness of many young people and the indignity suffered by the elderly; the lack of respect for authority and the consequent lack of courtesy from authority - all this is increasingly part of the normal daily experience of living.” The Daily Telegraph 30/4/2007.
This general loss of respect for authority and other people goes hand in hand with the loss of respect for the authority of God. The SCP will remind people that they are accountable to God, although many of them do not want to hear it. However, the SCP will do more than this. It will remind people that there is a better way. There is peace and reconciliation with God through the Lord Jesus Christ. Lives and society can be changed. This can be illustrated by the evangelical revival in England under George Whitefield and the Wesley brothers, which is generally credited with sparing England from the excesses of the French Revolution.
In the Richard Dimbleby Lecture on 6/12/2006, Defence of the Realm in the 21st Century, General Sir Mike Jackson, retired Chief of the General Staff of the British Army, said that the battle for “terrain was less important and the battle of ideas has commenced.” In April 2007, as the Leader of the Commons and just before he was appointed Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, Jack Straw warned of “a brand of terrorism which uses religion to justify its evil.”
The crusading arm of the humanist establishment, embodied in such people as Professor Richard Dawkins, sees the solution to be the abolition of religion. This is a counsel of despair; rather we need true religion to counter false religion. This is what the Scottish Christian Party will promote: the religion of forgiveness, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness and peace between man and man, following from peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1). “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Luke 2:14) - and in that order.
Are we not in a post-Christian era?
Atheists and humanists like to describe our society as post-modern and post-Christian, but the wish is likely to be the father of the thought.
Over 70% of people identified themselves as Christians in the last census in April 2001. In more recent times, on 23/9/2010 the Office for National Statistics published its largest social survey ever produced - The Integrated Household Survey. It identified among its headline statistics that 71% of people in Great Britain stated their religion was Christianity, showing that this statistic has held up over the past ten years.
The Lord Jesus Christ said to His Church: “Look, I am with you always” (or, literally, “all the days”) Matthew 28:20, so that we do not need to be deceived into thinking that we are living in any post-Christian era. There is no such thing.