Take a tip from Holyrood
THE Scottish Parliament is setting standards worldwide, with its Standards Committee in big demand.
This week’s meeting, which lasted all of five minutes (11:59 to 12:04 pm) rubber-stamped the convener’s trip to Sarajevo to tell Bosnians how to run a transparent, accessible and accountable parliament of their own.
The convener, Brian Adam, is the successor to Tricia Marwick, who, you may recall, got the boot after a complaint to the committee, yes, about its own convener’s standard of behaviour in the Filegate fiasco.
Now the new convener has voted with his deputy, Ken McIntosh, against giving the public access to the report into its own complaints. This is not the practice of other public bodies that deal with complaints, such as the Scottish public services ombudsman, the Law Society, the General Medical Council, etc.
However, we’re glad to report they were outvoted by the rest of the committee: Alex Neil, Donald Gorrie, Alex Fergusson and Bill Butler.
Meanwhile, fans of Sex and the City may like to know that one of the girls, Samantha Jones, is apparently keeping up her standards with gainful employment at Holyrood. Samantha Jones is the chief clerk to the committee.
If it’s the same Sam who is also off to Sarajevo, it’s time to lock up your boys in Bosnia.
Sparkling occasion hits birthday snag
WHETHER Brian Cox would have taken time off appearing in Uncle Varick at the Lyceum to attend Koo Stark’s understudy’s party in Edinburgh we will never know. But surely his interest would have been pricked, especially with the "love" scene from The Blue Room (1974) between Koo and Coxie making it into the list of Top 100 Sexy Screen Moments.
The diamonds and tiaras had been due out of the closet for the tenth birthday bash of Macintyres of Edinburgh, which has had to be cancelled because of a ... birthday. Gaynor Turner, who was once Koo’s understudy in the West End and famously appeared on stage more often than Prince Andrew’s ex, runs the George Street jewellers with her husband, Steve.
Gaynor explains: "We had arranged to have a party, but then I discovered I was three months pregnant. We’ve put it back until October, when I’ll not only be able to have some champagne, but also get back into my party gear."
Bubba and Dubya - the difference
WHEN you’ve had your fill of Hollywood and New York, where else is the next stop but ... Aberfeldy? Carol Wallace, the former editor of People, the four-million-selling US gossip magazine, popped down from her but ’n’ ben in Perthshire to entertain the troops at the McMedia dinner this week in Edinburgh.
Questioned about the cover-up in the American media of the "bodybags" returning from Iraq, she reckoned that’s the difference between Clinton and Bush. Bubba would have been saluting them coming home, sharing the pain of the relatives, while Dubya’s tried to airbrush them out of history.
Her office was a couple of blocks from 9/11, and that day she ripped up the magazine as it was about to go to press and in 24 hours produced a special with skeleton staff. Remarkably, it hit the streets in near-perfect state.
Hollywood historians focus on the Philo file
EVERYONE knows that America won the Second World War on its own, with Errol Flynn single-handedly liberating the Far East in Operation Burma. Well, according to Hollywood anyway. But the latest historical rewrite could ruin the Scottish tea-towel industry.
The creators of The West Wing are making a film about one of the forgotten inventors of the 20th century, Philo Farnsworth. The Farnsworth Invention is about the discovery of television by a 22-year-old in the 1920s in Utah and his battle with the industrialist David Sarnoff and Russian scientist Vladimir Zworykin over who discovered TV first.
So bang goes John Logie Baird’s claim to fame. Next, they’ll be telling us Bart Simpson discovered chloroform.
As for Philo Farnsworth, not long before he died in 1971 he had this to say about "his" invention: "There’s nothing on it worthwhile ... we’re not going to watch it in this household, and I don’t want it in your intellectual diet." All this 30 years before I’m a Celebrity ... was ever dreamt up.
• BRANDING is a key part of politics today and something New Labour was particularly adept at. As the party tries to revitalise itself, a meeting was held at the very Old Labour-sounding Broughton, Calton, Harbour and Lorne branch last night. Top of the agenda was a new name. Suggestions: Leith; Greater Leith; Leith Walk; South Leith; Broughton & Leith. Surely the Sunny Leith branch would be more in keeping with cheesy New Labour.
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Friday 24 May 2013
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