Saturday, June 03, 2006


Just what is the point of Nicol Stephen?

One has to ask as he must be one of the most hapless and useless Ministers in the Scottish Executive.

As Transport Minister he "gutlessly caved in" to pressure on the M74 extension despite his decision being simply the opposite of what the Executive's own enquiry found.

It was also he, and not the "Labour-controlled"* Forth Estuary Transport Authority, who first muted the idea of raising tolls on the Forth Bridge by agreeing to give a £24 million grant on condition that it pressed ahead with a congestion charging scheme. A scheme he then went to attack in the Dunfermline by-election.

As the present Enterprise Minister he has presided over a £60 million "black hole" in the budget of Scottish Enterprise and used £50 million of tax payers money to bail them out. Add to that his complete invisibility under his Lifelong Learning portfolio to broker a deal in the University lecturers' strike.

And we shouldn't forget this little gem of Nic imposing a 42% increase in fees on English students who come to Scottish universities.

But can one be surprised when he didn't even come back from his hols during the prospect of a potential crisis not just facing Scotland but the entire UK when a bird flu threat was identified.

So just what has he been up to? Well in true Fiberal style it appears to be fibbing and spinning in the hope that the press corp believe his laughable claims that he can lead them to be the biggest party in Scotland at next year's elections. This despite the fact they were fourth last time and in a number of seats came fifth!

How he thinks he will do this when only 7% of people think he will make a good First Minister and he was the least known Scottish political leader makes his fib-spin somewhat weak.

It's even weaker when you consider that London FibDem MP mistook him for Will-lie Rennie when he came to Westminster. You can listen to her (inebriated?) confession here - the tale of when she kissed the wrong Willy. If his own party don't know about him or his illustrious deputyship why does he think the voters will care?

The Minister for Plastic Fireguards

* Copyright: The FibDems

Nicol Stephen? Who he?
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