Fife Labour broke ranks with its SNP coalition partners at Fife Council not just once, but twice, at Thursday’s full council (”Fife Council split …” Courier, 5/10/18).
Labour defeated the SNP when they put the interests of P1 pupils in Fife before bolstering John Swinney’s ill-fated P1 tests.
They again defeated the SNP when they refused to support an SNP motion celebrating the NHS without acknowledging the serious problems, not least with staffing levels for GPs, radiologists and psychiatrists, caused by 11 years of SNP misrule at Holyrood.
In both cases, Fife’s SNP councillors had no response but to cry foul, accusing their cross-party critics of playing politics and casting themselves as the victims of “SNP bad”. Of course this apes the standard tactic used by Nicola Sturgeon et al when faced with criticism of their less than glorious record in office. Their bottom line is that only SNP politicians genuinely care about the people they govern; everyone else is just ‘playing politics”.
For once, at Fife House, the SNP’s last resort – invoking Tory austerity as the sole cause of problems in the two completely devolved areas of education and health – fell flat.
For Fife Labour, the price of working with the SNP has been to keep stumm, pretend everything’s hunkydory and when pushed, blame Westminster, which, of course, SNP logic dictates can only be fixed by independence.
Little wonder, then, that some of Fife’s Labour councillors are balking at being Nicola Sturgeon’s lapdogs.