Rive Gauche: Corbyn appears to be tweeting himself now…?

Corbyn appears to be tweeting himself now…?  Well, better that than actually trying to do a decent job as Leader of The Labour Party which he is driving headlong to extinction…Unfortunately.  Utterly useless leader. I’ve voted Labour for 40 years.  I will not vote Labour while Corbyn is Party Leader. I am not alone in that view. Get rid of him.

It may be that Corbyn has nothing to do with the Jeremy Corbyn for PM account.  But it would not surprise me if he runs that account as well.

But this sums it up rather well…



Some more Pics in Perth

Albanian Violin player – He’s very good.

Plastercast model outside Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber where I get my hair cuts.


Perth Museum.  I visit once a week, sometimes more often.  Good museum and Art gallery

A brother and sister piper and drummer.  They are extremely talented musicians.  Early to mid-teens?


A wonderful bronze of a stag in a shop selling astonishingly expensive watches.  I pass the shop regularly and I  have never seen anyone in it.


Marvellous graffiti on a wall in Perth (Council approved)

Scone Park near the duckpond in the early morning cold mist

Ian Duncan Smith rant about Supreme Court taken apart by barrister

1. Every sentence of this is provably false. It is Trump-like in its audacity. pic.twitter.com/eC3WwoAZBt — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017

2. There’s no issue about who is supreme between Parliament and Supreme Court. It’s Parliament. That is basic constitutional law. pic.twitter.com/Ls12PimYHX — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017

3. The Supreme Court is not self-appointed. It was established by Parliament by section 23 of the Constitutional Reform Act 2005. pic.twitter.com/6AY61inDyV — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017

4. There is nothing intriguing about dissenting opinions in Supreme Court (or House of Lords as was) judgments. Very common. pic.twitter.com/YF3krBTocB — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017

5. The Court expressly did not tell Parliament how to run its business. It clarified what the govt could not do unilaterally. pic.twitter.com/sQfYmp6yhH — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017

6. There is no new territory. Not even something that looks a little bit like new territory. As the judgment makes plain. pic.twitter.com/hs6wjSSSVc — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017

7. As IDS repeats his inarticulate point, I’ll repeat my rebuttal: Parliament has not been told what to do. Not in the slightest. pic.twitter.com/s1ZuNEBsI1 — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017

8. The only “real constitutional issues” are those arising in IDS’ own imagination, born of his own unstymied ignorance and base stupidity. pic.twitter.com/QPTXMCbPOt — The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2017


Rabbie Burns Night

haggisBurns Night 2017 – what is a haggis, what are the words of the poem Address to a Haggis and where can I buy one?

THE Sun – where else – has the info.


Everything you need to know about the traditional dish eaten during Robert Burns’ celebration

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And never brought to mind?

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And auld lang syne.

(Chorus: For auld lang syne, my jo,

For auld lang syne,

We’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,

For auld lang syne)



I’ll drink the whisky, eat the neaps and taties and chuck the rest in the bin.  Can’t stand Haggis.

President Trump is a madman? Who knew?

The story is here

“The president is a 70-year-old child whose TV time must be closely monitored — because any news story that upsets his ego will trigger a temper tantrum followed by irrational demands that his indulgent, overwhelmed guardians will be helpless to refuse.

Or so Donald Trump’s aides keep confiding to the nearest available reporter.

On Sunday, one of the president’s confidantes told Politico that his staffers have to “control information that may infuriate him,” a task made difficult by the fact that the leader of the free world “gets bored and likes to watch TV.”

That same day, some Trump aides provided the New York Times with a portrait of the president as a moody adolescent.

Mr. Trump grew increasingly angry on Inauguration Day after reading a series of Twitter messages pointing out that the size of his inaugural crowd did not rival that of Mr. Obama’s in 2009. But he spent his Friday night in a whirlwind of celebration and affirmation. When he awoke on Saturday morning, after his first night in the Executive Mansion, the glow was gone, several people close to him said, and the new president was filled anew with a sense of injury…..”

The Supreme Court Brexit Judgment In Plain English

By , and

The Supreme Court has handed down its highly anticipated judgment in the Brexit case. This was, in part, an appeal against the High Court’s decision that an Act of Parliament is required to trigger Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union (TEU).

You can read our plain English explainer of the High Court ruling here, and an outline of the case before the Supreme Court here.

The Supreme Court joined three Brexit-related cases together, and was asked to answer the following questions:

  1. Is an Act of Parliament required to trigger Article 50 TEU (the procedure by which a Member State may withdraw from the European Union)?
  2. If an Act of Parliament were required, would the Northern Irish Assembly need to consent before that Act was passed?
  3. Does leaving the EU change the Northern Ireland constitution, and therefore does it need the consent of the Northern Irish people?
  4. Does the Scottish Parliament need to be consulted before triggering Article 50?

Before we get to the judgment, let’s start with the basics….

Read here

It’s time we all knew a little more about impeachment

The Independent reports:

Reality TV star Donald J. Trump is the President of the United States of America.

But ever since his election, some have been debating the possibility of impeachment and musing on the likelihood that the 45th President could be removed from office.

Now that he has been officially sworn in, there’s even a campaign and petition led jointly by Free Speech For People and RootsAction for Trump’s immediate impeachment.

There are multiple other petitions, including one Change.org campaign that has around 86,000 signatures so far.

But how much do you actually know about impeachment?

What does it mean?

  • The process of bringing charges against a high official of Government by a legislative body
  • Originates in English law also exists under constitution law in many nations
  • Does not necessarily imply removal of the official from office – only the first step
  • In the U.S., grounds for impeachment include: “Treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanours”
  • These refer to crimes committed against the state by public officials

Summary: Refers to charges against an official, but not automatic removal from office

How does it work?

  • A document (or “resolution calling for a committee investigation of charges against the officer in question”) known as an Article of Impeachment is taken to the House Committee on Rules
  • They may take it to the Judiciary Committee for investigation
  • The House of Representatives has the power to choose to impeach (i.e. votes to bring the charges) – needs a simple majority
  • The Senate has the power to carry out impeachment (i.e. to try the case) – needs a two-thirds majority to convict
  • Trial is presided over by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court (if a president is impeached) or the Vice President (if another official)
  • Has it happened before?

    • Andrew Johnson (1868): narrowly avoided conviction by the Senate for violating the Tenure of Office Act (by removing the secretary of war)
    • Bill Clinton (1999): threatened with impeachment for perjury and obstruction of justice, but acquitted by the Senate
    • (Richard Nixon [1974]: resigned over Watergate scandal before impeachment proceedings were approved by the House could actually begin)

    Summary: No president has ever been impeached by the Senate, but proceedings have occurred

  • Is it possible for Trump to be impeached?

    • Despite his plans to give up operation of Trump Organisation (but not income or ownership), there is a potentially serious conflict of interests between his business and his political position
    • In particular, it’s been suggested that his business income abroad could theoretically influence foreign policy
    • The 2012 Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act – or Stock Act – prevents the president from insider trading, or profiting off information they obtain on the job, and demands that officials reveal financial information
    • Tax breaks via Trump’s businesses since 1980, if they continue, could be in violation of the Constitution’s ‘presidential compensation clause’, which forbids withholding additional money beyond a fixed federal salary
    • Contract for lease of Old Post Office in Washington D.C. (Trump International Hotel) forbids elected officials being part of, or benefiting from, that lease
    • The Foreign Emoluments Clause in the Constitution forbids a president accepting a gift / benefit from a foreign leader / government
    • Rent paid by the Industrial & Commercial Bank of China for its space in Trump Tower, and spending by foreign diplomats at Trump properties, could be in violation of this
    • Trump also refuses to release his tax returns, which is technically illegal now that he is President

    Summary: Possible in theory, but there is very little precedent to guide lawmakers

    Is it likely? 

    • A campaign or document focussing on the legal aspects, particularly the Stock Act and the Foreign Emoluments Clause, could be used
    • A campaign or document focussing on Trump’s unpopularity and more unpalatable behaviour would be unlikely to work
    • No President in US history has ever been successfully impeached by the Senate
    • Only one President (Richard Nixon) has ever failed to complete his term in office due to the threat of impeachment
    • A Republican President would normally expect support from a Republican-majority government, making impeachment unlikely
    • However, despite the Republican-led Congress, Trump’s unpopularity within his own party could encourage lawmakers to pursue impeachment
    • Bookies have revealed a huge surge in bets on Trump’s impeachment, citing a one way traffic in betting
    • Betting odds on Trump getting impeached or resigning before the end of his term are extremely good

    Summary: History and process are against an impeachment, but the bets so far are on an unfinished term in office 

    We shall see…

Legislation to ensure the Government can trigger Article 50 by the end of March will be introduced “within days.”

Legislation to ensure the Government can trigger Article 50 by the end of March will be introduced “within days.”

Brexit Secretary David Davis maintained Theresa May will stick to her timetable to leave the EU – despite losing its Supreme Court Brexit battle.

Speaking in the House of Commons, the Tory MP said the ruling – which stated that May needs Parliamentary approval before triggering Article 50 – would not derail Government plans.

He said the Supreme Court ruling did not affect the fact Britain will be leaving the EU in line with the result of the 2016 referendum, telling MPs: “There can be no turning back.

“The point of no return was passed on June 23 last year.”


You may find this article useful: Jeff King: What Next? Legislative Authority for Triggering Article 50

“The Supreme Court judgment in Miller v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union on the morning of 24 January 2017 made it clear that an Act of Parliament is required for a notice under article 50(2) of the Treaty of the European Union. The Government and Opposition should now state their positions clearly on the form of such an Act without delay.  So far, there has been little such discussion. This post (originally published on 8 November 2016 and reposted here for convenience) suggests form, content and conditions for such legislation that neither challenge the result of the 23 June 2016 referendum nor the Government’s stated timelines for giving notice.

The Form of Legislation

Read the rest of the article here

Jerry Hayes does it again…with this writing


Jerry Hayes. Ex-Tory MP, barrister, writer and bon viveur is a good friend..  He is also a very amusing writer…as this will confirm…


Jerry won’t mind me quoting his entire postbut his excellent blog is here for future reference

” I think that it is time for all of us to join Post Realism Politics. I am a passionate Remainer, but is delusional to convince myself that Brexit will never happen. It will. May gave us a pragmatic road plan of where she wants to lead us. It is strewn with potholes, land mines and ravines that have as yet to be crossed. But as imperfect as it is it gives the country focus. For fellow Remainers in Parliament I would urge them not to vote against the triggering of article 50. Hold the government to account by all means. Argue, debate, vote. But just try and get it right. The Lib Dem position is rather patronising. It’s basically that ‘a load of ill educated working class xenophobes got it horribly wrong due to the mendacity and down right lies of politicians egged on by the right wing press. We will now educate them and given them another vote to correct the error of their ways’.
Oh, for God’s sake grow up.

The burning and drifting hulk of what was Labour is both sad and bad. Sad, because although I am not a socialist, the Labour movement had its heart if not always it’s head in the right place. Bad, because although I am a Conservative, a massive Tory landslide and the total destruction of Labour would be a democratic disaster. Labour backbenchers will probably be given a free vote on Article 50 simply because the PLP is out of control.

The Kippers are interesting. They could win Stoke Central but I think that it is unlikely. All their foxes have been shot by May. Just what are they for? Fromage tried to position them as the nation’s conscience holding May’s feet to the fire on Brexit. Politics abhors a vacuum and the Tories have filled the void. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Douglas Carswell re rats and campaigns for the Tories.

After a refreshing lunch at the Savile Club, I watched (in the bar of course) the Trump inauguration. I, like the rest of the world, expected something unifying, healing, magnanimous and a glimpse of something Presidential. Instead, we were treated to a rust belt stump rant. A shiver would have ran down my spine had I not realised that the whole point of the American Constitution is to prevent dictators doing what they want. But there is absolutely nothing we can do about him. He is there. If Americans want to hobble him start fighting to take back control of both houses. Candle lit vigils and women’s marches won’t help them to do that.

But May has a unique opportunity. A bit of flattery goes a very long way with the Donald. She should lay it on with a trowel with a cement mixer chugging away in the background. However, the big question is what to do with Bozo. Easy, leave him at home. Keep him off the airwaves. The man is a dangerous distraction. He will say something stupid. It will be the Bozo show and a reminder to Trump of all the insults that have been hurled at him. And a little humiliation of our Foreign Secretary will go down well at the White House. This is all about two world leaders talking turkey over the pork barrel. It mustn’t be fucked up.

This must be May’s moment while the rest of Europe looks on in envious horror.

The real winner is Philip May. His role is to be entertained by the First Lady who scrubs up well.