Ruth Davidson paid £3,000 for essay on capitalism '˜reboot'

Ruth Davidson was paid £3,000 for writing an essay in which she argued for a 'reboot' of capitalism and highlighted the problems of wage stagnation.

Scottish Conservative party leader Ruth Davidson was paid £3,000 for writing an essay. Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire
Scottish Conservative party leader Ruth Davidson was paid £3,000 for writing an essay. Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire

The Scottish Conservative leader penned the 3,000-word article for the UnHerd website in July, claiming people were “losing faith in the ability of capitalism” to improve their lives.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Her official register of interests at the Scottish Parliament has now revealed that she was paid £3,000 by Unherd Limited for the essay the following month.

The SNP accused Ms Davidson of “hypocrisy”, claiming she had boosted her own income by writing a piece discussing the financial challenges faced by everyday citizens.

In her article, the Scottish Tory leader argued that capitalism was “not working for everyone” in the UK and called for a “Ctrl+Alt+Del reboot” both nationally and internationally.

“How does a teenager living in a pit town with no pit, a steel town with no steel or a factory town where the factory closed its doors a decade ago or more, see capitalism working for them?” she wrote.

“The multiple instabilities of insecure employment, opaque career progression, wage stagnation, high rental and commuting costs and growing financial barriers to home ownership clearly explain why Britain’s young adults don’t feel they have a personal stake in a system that doesn’t work for them.”

SNP MSP George Adam said: “Ruth Davidson’s hypocrisy knows no bounds – even when she is admitting to how her own party has reduced living standards and ravaged communities, she is coining it in.

“Pound-a-word Davidson has absolutely no self-awareness – while many of her own constituents and people across the country suffer at the hands of her party’s welfare policies, she is able to sit comfortably and write blogs to boost her income knowing that she’ll never have to suffer the impact of those policies.

“Ruth Davidson is absolutely right when she says ‘some people are enriching themselves’. She just seems completely unaware that she is one of them.”

A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives hit back, pointing out that the SNP’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford has two extra jobs on top of his £75,000 MP’s salary.

Mr Blackford, who replaced Angus Robertson in the role after he lost his Moray seat at the general election, is the chairman of a funeral plans fund and a telecoms company.

“If the hypocritical SNP wants to complain about outside earnings, it should start with its leader in Westminster, who rakes in £50,000 a year away from politics,” the spokesman said.