The problem with having blind faith is that some day you might wake up blind

I offer a posting I did on the 10 th April and on the 6th of May it happened.

A wee bit of advice to the sheeple.

“The problem with having blind faith is that some day you might wake up blind.”

Bob Costello's photo.
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Gordon Bain

Gordon Bain Who are the “sheeple”?

Bob Costello

Bob Costello Sheeple ,Gordon , are people who have a propensity to act in a flock and follow blindly never looking at the road ahead, but being happy ,in place of having to think , to follow on . They are fine as long as they have someone in front of them to do the thinking , but when it gets dark they have a habit of walking into things they hadn’t though, might be in front of them. That is why a road map is so important.

Gordon Bain

Gordon Bain But Bob, who ARE the sheeple?

Bob Costello

Bob Costello The sheeple, Gordon , in this context are the self appointed guardians of the soul of the SNP . The ones ( mostly new members ) that offer abuse instead of reasoned argument . They have a standard position of, the SNP can do no wrong and they have a master plan that they are not telling anyone about . They ignore the fact that after 18 months we are still in the same position as we were the day after the referendum as far as addressing the issues we lost the referendum on . Their answer to convincing people who voted no ( for many reasons) is to insult them. They are not capable of forming an independent thought process and therefore follow the flock. They are amongst the people who think they are campaigning at the moment but as the manifesto has not been released then I cannot understand what policies they think they are campaigning on. They add absolutely zero to the ongoing independence debate, in fact they stifle debate and this might very well be the reason the SNP do not reign them in .


Road to nowhere instead of a road map to independence

Ok so here we are two days after the worst result the SNP have had in an election for many years and here is a few uncomfortable facts to chew over .

SNP 6 seats less than the last Scottish elections

Three weeks ago SNP predicted to get all 73 constituency seats

The SNP got 59 Constituency seats

Therefore in effect SNP lost 14 seats they were strongly predicted to get

The SNP did not ask for a mandate to hold a referendum in their manifesto and so they don’t have one

The SNP did not ask for a mandate to gain the power to even call a referendum in their manifesto

The SNP mislead the people of Scotland into believing that both votes for them would further the cause of independence

People were disillusioned because there was nothing in the manifesto regarding independence

The SNP panicked when they realised this and hauled out Stewart Hosie with a promise of unspecified further moves on independence AFTER the election

People were disgusted with Nicola Sturgeon for posing on the front page of the Sun two days after the verdict in Hillsborough came out and prancing around in her Margaret Thatcher Jacket was not exactly the brightest thing to do either.

The SNP will go down in history as the party that allowed the conservative party in scotland to become a credible party once more and unfortunately they are in a state of cognitive dissonance and are trying to put a positive spin on the election. They really need to accept the fact that the disquiet that they have been turning a deaf ear to for quite some time now was real and the people have made that very plain in this election.

This in my opinion sums up why today we have an SNP Scottish government who as far as independence goes , are somewhat up the creek and only a strong will and the application of deft policies and a proper strategy will take us to another referendum in a few years, but I for one am not holding my breath .

There is however a glimmer of light on the horizon I would suggest and here is my offering for what it is worth. Some time ago ,in fact in the run up to the Westminster elections I was speaking to one of Labour’s political managers about the prospects of Labour’s efforts in that election . I told him that the only hope for Labour was to break away from the UK Labour party in London form a truly Scottish Labour party and embrace independence.

Well you know what happened to Labour in that election and much the same has happened here in the Scottish elections. Labour can’t go much lower and they must look at a new and very radical strategy . They must now consider the road to independence, as that is the only road that will take them anywhere and they must shake of the toxic ties to Blairism.

I was in Menies last night for a pint with some other Yes supporters , members of the Yes bus team and in one of the rooms there was a large group of labour activists and politicians. People whose politics  I don’t agree with but have remained friends through the referendum campaign and the westminster one also. There has been many a heated discussion between us throughout this time. Jenny Marra was there and I went through to offer my commiserations and at the same time congratulate her on keeping her seat at Holyrood. I said to her that I looked forward to seeing how they intend building that once proud party back again. She assured me that they would saying ” we are not going anywhere ” I gave her a wee hug and told her “I hope not ”

So there is the future for both the SNP and Scottish labour and I have actually spoken of this before . Labour to change and embrace independence and the SNP to welcome them to the fold , then we would be back on the road to independence . No recriminations no hate comments or animosity just a common love for this great country we have here and the wonderful people we have in it.

All political parties in Scotland have made mistakes but it is now time to leave them in the past , get our sleeves rolled up and get stuck in.

We can still be on the road to independence.

Our Journey


Letter of resignation SNP

Peter Murrell

Dear Peter

It is with much regret and very much soul searching that I must cancel my membership of the SNP. A party that I have supported for many years both financially and indeed a vast amount of my time.

To give you an idea of my commitment to the party and indeed the fight for independence which is what, up to recently I have always thought that the SNP were all about, I list below some of the input I have had to the independence cause and therefore the party.

Going back to 2013 and the wonderful march and rally in Edinburgh I supplied two coaches free of charge at a worth of £***

I also supplied a mini bus for disabled people free of charge at a worth of £***

Over the years I have allowed free storage and parking at our depot for SNP vehicles

In the run up to the referendum I took in Chris Law’s 50 year old fire engine and turned it into The Spirit of Independence, in our workshops this involved completely stripping the paint by hand and repainting it , refurbishing the brass work and completely overhauling the mechanical elements of it . The value of this was £*,***

I made available the Yes Bus Scotland’s dragon for independence to any grass roots organisation to campaign in their own particular manner. A 20 year old double decker bus with a history of service in two countries which had gained their independence from the UK. The value of this could be conservatively assessed at £**,***

This bus then went on to actively campaign throughout Dundee Angus and fife with the Yes bus team, a group of committed volunteers from all parties and none. This yes bus has continued to promote independence mainly in the City square both during and since the referendum.

The value of this could conservatively be put at £**,***

During the campaign I supplied vans and minibuses to collect yes materials from Edinburgh and distribute these materials throughout the area and convey SNP campaigners throughout Dundee.  A conservative estimation of a worth of £*,***

During the referendum campaign I supplied for a whole 2 months, a coach and driver for Business for Scotland who worked very closely with the SNP, **********************************************************************************the worth of this is £**,*** with a contribution from business for Scotland of £*,***

There have been many other areas of assistance which I have given.

So the forgoing plus the direct donations that I have made to the party I feel shows that I have had unstinting commitment both to the party and to the cause of independence.

I have since the referendum mainly through social media and discussions with SNP politicians sought to offer suggestions regarding the ongoing fight for independence. Sometimes this has been taken as being anti SNP by some of the less able to think members of the party instead of constructive criticism.

A couple of days after the referendum I approached a local SNP politician and said “well we have lost a battle but not the war so what is the plan. The response I got was “what plan”. I said that we had made mistakes during the campaign such as muddle on plan B and we failed to convince pensioners that their pensions were not at risk in an independent Scotland and before any further referendum we must at the very least answer these questions and we should continue at a lower level the grass roots campaign to make people aware of these and many other issues that they were obviously uncomfortable with. Again the equivalent of a blank look. In short we have not made any preparation for a future referendum and it is still that situation today.

During the referendum campaign   we, the yes Bus team were on the streets of Dundee almost every day talking to thousands of undecided and hard no voters explaining the positive side of independence. We had a fantastic mix of people from all walks of life and political persuasions including people from business for Scotland of which I am a member. We had people out on the periphery and the streets surrounding the city square handing out merchandise and leaflets (when we could prise the material from the SNP run Yes Hub in St Andrews Street. And most important was that all these people sometimes 20 to 30 (far more than the SNP could muster to deliver leaflets and 10 times more than the amount of people who manned the occasional SNP stall including the politicians who huddled ineffectually around their stall in the Nethergate.

Now I should have realised at the time but this reluctance to have much to do with the grass roots groups was actually apparent even then, because the only time we saw the politicians at the Yes Bus was when the press were there and they disappeared along with the press, so they did absolutely no campaigning in Dundee with the grass roots groups that I was associated with.

After the referendum the yes organisation was disbanded and I can only wonder at the wisdom of this as it was a catalyst for the grass roots groups and to my mind would have been a logical way of keeping the independence movement alive.

We sent 56 MP’s down to London out of a possible 59. A massive majority and I cannot for the life of me understand why they were not tasked with attempting to wrest the power to hold a referendum at a time of our choosing from Westminster to Holyrood. You will be aware that with a majority of one in Holyrood we managed to persuade the British Government to grant temporary power to hold a referendum after the last Scottish elections.

So I have over the last few months began to have an uneasy feeling regarding the actual commitment of the SNP to actually commit themselves wholeheartedly to the cause of independence .

I keep receiving messages and postings from unthinking people with the well-worn message of “ the SNP knows what they are doing they have a plan “ well with half a century of business behind me I have found that blind allegiance and faith generally leads to disaster.

So I have had misgivings as to the commitment or lack of strategic planning exhibited by the SNP with regards to a future referendum for some time, but what has brought this to a head is recent events in connection with a rally  myself and others organised in Dundee on Sunday 4th October.

This rally was a “road map to independence” misconstrued by some of the mindless SNP trolls to be pressure for an imminent referendum. I realised for the reasons previously mentioned that we are not ready for a referendum should the opportunity present itself and taking into consideration the remarks from Nicola Sturgeon that “the Scottish people will decide  when we are ready for another referendum” and also realising that many people in Scotland , a great many SNP members among them are becoming restless because of the inability or reluctance of the SNP to present a reasonable way forward (a road map) I reasoned that a sensible approach and opportunity for the SNP would be to present a road map , not necessarily with a date but showing that proper preparations had been put in place . I feel that this would have been a good compromise and would have placated the unrest which is brewing.

Now we had asked Tommy Sheridan   (being a prominent pro-independence campaigner) to talk together with several other speakers. We had a great line up of top class bands to entertain the crowds. The problem was that we could not get any SNP speakers. Eventually the top brass put forward Jimmy Black who is not a parliamentarian but a councillor, who made it clear that he had been “put forward.” Now he promptly   did a posting on Facebook asking all and sundry (not necessarily his constituents) if he should appear at the same event as Tommy Sheridan. I have never in my life seen anything so transparent, immature and incompetent being initiated by anyone let alone a politician. As if that was not bad enough he actually made reference to why he thought he should not appear siting Sheridan’s conviction for perjury ( which he has served his punishment for ) and inexplicably reference to a book about Sheridan which made unsubstantiated allegations about his past. So we had an SNP politician “on Facebook” indicating that a punishment handed down in court was not sufficient and the person should continue to be ostracised presumably for the rest of his life and more incredibly acting as judge and jury on unsubstantiated allegations that for some reason have never come to court.

Now this started a torrent of abuse, mainly from insiders within the close confines of the SNP in Dundee, mainly Dundee West, both to me and another person (a woman) who was involved in the organisation of this event.

Now we had properly applied within the time constraints for permission to hold the rally but because of a misunderstanding concerning the parade element of the day we had not applied separately (despite the staff in the council offices stating that only the one form was needed) for the parade and therefore we applied as soon as we realised this. Now late applications are very common place and happen all the time and the Convener of the Licencing committee has discretion in this. This man is Stewart Hunter an SNP councillor. Now despite all the necessary departments being happy with the parade including the police who I had detailed discussions with and in an apparent attempt to harm the rally he decided not to use his disctecionaly power to allow the parade to go ahead. He used the excuse that the last time I organised a rally in May it was chaotic and he only gave permission on the morning of that rally.

So I will go on now to explain what actually happened to the last rally, again a grass roots rally organised by Yes We Care and not me .I was in fact nothing to do with the application.

This rally was to take place on the weekend before the general election. Several days before the rally was to take place I had a visit from Chris Law (now Chris Law MP) at my office. He asked me if I could use my influence to stop the rally (a yes rally) and have it postponed to the week end after the general election as he did not want people filling up the City Square waving saltires and having yes signs all over the place. Yes, incredibly the SNP did not want any mention or sign of independence before a general election. I at first expressed my disbelief at this and found it difficult to comprehend what he had just said. I firstly explained that I had not applied for the permission so he was speaking to the wrong person, although I had agreed to put the Yes Bus there on the day as a focal point and to use as a changing room for the Highland dancers. I however agreed to have a word with the organisers to see what could be done however I did mention that as the event had been booked for that particular weekend, there was no permission in place for the following weekend. He assured me that this would be sorted!   Now apparently and before I had had the chance to speak to the organisers he had asked them to go to the Dundee west office and again asked them to postpone the event until after the General election and again I believe stated both by him and another person employed by the SNP that the short notice application would be sorted. In the event the rally went ahead without, as far as I can ascertain even an application being submitted and was only passed by Councillor (SNP) Stewart Hunter on the very Morning of the Rally.

So for this councillor to try to use my late application for an event that I had nothing to do with and was in fact the internal machinations and political manoeuvring of local politicians (which in itself throws up questions of probity) that caused the late (if any) application to prevent a yes parade going ahead is nothing short of a disgrace.

The event on 4th October minus the walk around the town went ahead and was a huge success with over a thousand yes supporters present. This engendered extreme sour grapes on the part of the SNP and Stewart Hunter through the Dundee Courier (a staunchly unionist paper) tried to put a negative spin on the event calling it a shambles and stating the there was only 300 at the event. Negativity I have not witnessed since the referendum and all by unionist papers and project fear. It would seem that the Dundee SNP have taken that mantle for themselves.

Because of the success of the event, there appeared on Facebook yesterday a posting by Tom Thompson (a parliamentary assistant to both Joe Fitzpatrick and Chris Law, showing the front page of the unionist paper the Courier with a totally false impression of how the event had gone and a very negative slant on it.  This was closely followed by negative comments by several people who are either employees of the SNP or in a close cabal that can be seen regularly inhabiting the Dundee West offices, in a blatant attempt at character assassination of which I was the subject. I never thought that I would see the day when the SNP used a unionist paper to attack one of their own.

One of these people I mention is already the subject of a complaint to you in regards to libellous statements in reference to me on social media and of which I took great exception to especially as he was an officer of the SNP . A complaint by the way that you yourself have for some two months failed to address.

Well Peter I have had enough, I have supported the SNP through thick and thin for many years I have walked the streets of Dundee for months during the referendum I have engaged with people from all walks of life and convinced them to vote for independence or in the case of the General election, to vote for Chris Law .I have offered honest constructive criticism when I thought that they were straying off the road to independence. I have lived and breathed independence for the last two years and more during the campaign and after it.

During this last two weeks I have been sickened by the vile comments posted about myself and the other organiser of this Yes event by members of the SNP including staff members and I will say it again in case you missed it A YES EVENT.

I feel the SNP have indeed strayed of the road we are all going down I feel they are side-lining the grass roots organisations that did so much good work. I feel that the SNP are more interested in retaining power , power they see diminishing after a yes vote when we will have in Scotland a Labour part of Scotland , Conservative party of Scotland , a Lib Dem party of Scotland and all the smaller parties ,all off Scotland.

It is with a heavy heart that I must leave the SNP but my loyalty is to Scotland above any political party. Scotland, the place that gets me excited every time I come home to it. Scotland, the only place on the World I would ever live in and lastly Scotland, the country that belongs to the Scots


Bob Costello


A letter to Nicola

A letter to Nicola


Dear Nicola.

I was at your “public “ meeting last night in the Queens Hotel in Dundee and you might have noticed that I walked out of the meeting at the point where Joe Fitzpatrick who was “choosing “ the questions to be asked decided that I was not to be chosen to ask my question.

You will also no doubt have noticed that the questions you were asked were very “soft” questions and very easily answered and mostly from the usual group of SNP acolytes and general hanger-on’s and failed potential candidates for one thing or another.

Now you might be asking yourself why I think that I should have been able to put my question. Well I will tell you and to do so I will have to go back to when we started the campaigning for a Yes vote in the referendum.

I was at the inaugural meeting  of the Yes movement where you gave a speech to get the organisation off the ground .I am a fairly perceptive person probably brought about with my half century in business. It was the first time I had heard you speak live, and I remember thinking that I detected a hard side to you and mentioned to another SNP supporter at the meeting that we were looking at the next First Minister.

Ok so the campaign took off from there, the Yes movement was a great idea as it acted as a catalyst for the various grassroots organisations that spontaneously came into being as a consequence of the whole Yes movement.

At this stage I append my resignation letter to your husband Peter Murrell who is the Chief Executive of the SNP as this probably explains why I arrived at where I am today and why I was disappointed that my chance to question you last night was deliberately thwarted by the very politicians that I had done so much to assist, mistakenly believing that I was doing so as part of the ongoing fight for independence. It should be noted that I never received a reply to this letter of resignation, neither did I get the courtesy of an acknowledgment.…/letter-of-resignation-snp

So back to last night. It is because of the foregoing that I thought I should have been given the courtesy of a chance to put my question and not been thwarted by your overzealous acolytes in hurriedly rearranging for the questions to be put on paper with the name of the questioner as opposed to the open question and answer session which I believe had been planned until I showed up.


So Nicola, here is the question which you will see accords to the case I have been making for the last 19 Months, since we lost the referendum.


You are an advocate of the Scottish people expressing themselves in a democratic manner and although you have said many times that they will let you Know when they are ready for another referendum, you have never actually let them know how you will accept this. You have of course stated, and I heard you doing it the other night on television at the leader’s debate that the no one should stand in the way of the democratic will of the Scottish people.

Now as you know, the most accurate way that the democratic will of the people can be expressed is through the ballot box and when people cast their vote they should be aware that this potentially gives the party voted for, a mandate to achieve whatever is contained in the manifesto that they have presented before the election. In this context you will note that in the 2011 election where you gained only 1 of an overall majority this was enough to force the British government to concede to the demand to “allow “a referendum to take place.

Now you have been making sounds about the possibility of addressing the concerns that lost us the referendum in 2014, AFTER the election but I am of the opinion that you are once again wasting an opportunity to get a mandate from the people to wrest the power to hold a referendum from Westminster to Holyrood where this power belongs( not necessarily to set a date for a referendum) If you had put this requirement into the manifesto for last year’s Westminster elections then things would have been different today and your MP’s in Westminster would have had some teeth to fight with instead of being humiliated time after time in parliament and in all probability had we been in the position of  power to call a referendum then in all probability we would not have been bombing Syria today.


So here we are one year on and again you have failed to put the very basic building blocks for a future referendum into place, as yet again you have shied away from asking the people of Scotland for a mandate through the ballot box, to force the British government to relinquish control of our right to hold a referendum, and quite simply that is the question I wished to put to you last night and was prevented for doing so by your self-serving acolytes.

You would I am sure note ,last night the contrast between then and the last time you came to dundee . The last time you filled the Marriott hall with many hundreds of supporters and several hundred who could not get entry , whereas last night you could not fill one of the small meeting rooms in the Queens hotel and if it had not been for the usual SNP acolytes and politicians it would have been a bare room indeed. I wonder if there is others who are similarly disillusioned by your lack of drive for independence.


So Nicola I won’t be voting for you on Thursday and I have looked at alternatives and haven’t been impressed by any of them. I could never in my lifetime vote for either the red or blue Tories or the Lib Dems because of the dishonest way they conducted the referendum campaign through project fear. The left wing parties are too left wing with  uncosted promises and the Greens who I had considered blew it when I heard Patrick Harvey saying that they would dismantle the oil industry.


So for the first time in my adult life I will not be voting for anyone. I will in all probability have a pint in Menies and watch the start of the results come in together with the exit polls, which for some inexplicable reason (which you might care to elucidate on) was not done at the referendum, but I will be doing that with a heavy heart.


You are the reason I will not be voting on Thursday Nicola as I really have come to realise that through either design or simply incompetence you have strayed from the road to independence.


Scotland will be independent eventually, with or without you, the choice is yours.

Bob Costello

The final solution 

No I am not speaking about the holacaust ,I am speaking about the Royal Family .

On the event of the Queens 90th Birthday and the vast amount to money which is being spent on celebrating it I have been pondering on a solution to the seemingly everlasting debate on what we can do with this anachronistic anti democratic  establishment called the Royal family.

Now I realise that there are a great many people in the UK and indeed other parts of the World who need to feel inferior and defer to privilege, they seem to enjoy grovelling and scraping to entities that they see as being ” better” than them. There is of course  a great many people , me amoung them, who do not see people being any “better” than any one else and at the same time did not much like the idea of subsidising this undemocratic family , especially at a time when we see the need for food banks rising and the country being in such a state financially that the government see the need to implement austerity policies  the consequences of which which see people committing suicide on a daily basis.

So what do we do with the Royal family and I include the extended family which will of course take in the the son of James Hewit? 

Well the way I see it is quite simple ,we privatise them . We form ” the Royal family PLC” , we put them on the stock market and in that way the intuitive phsicophants can have a field day and absolutely wallow in their adoration of privelage . Just imagin , instead of waving wee plastic flags when watching the queen pass by in her plastic coach , they can wave their share certificates. I am sure the Tory government could find one of their friends in the financial industry with experience of packaging sub prime mortgages who could organise  this flotation.

The best  thing about this is that it would take the Royal family out of the pockets of those who would rather be governed in a more democratic way  and perhaps the proceeds of this flotation could be used to alleviate starvation and inequality which is prevelent in this country at present .

Ok so who is for it  the  privatisation of the Royal family ?


Some of you might not have have heard of Frank’s Law but is is a term given to a campaign started by Amanda Kopel wife of Frank Kopel , who at one time played for Dundee United.

He contacted a debilitating mental illness at a relatively young age and passed away as a result of that illness.

At present in Scotland , people under the age of 65 cannot receive assisted personal care and the propose of the campaign is to address this pressing issue.
A good friend of the yes campaign and a member of the Yes Bus team , Sharon Davie, has been at the forefront of this campaign and has approached both Nicola Sturgeon and the health secretary Sheona Robinson , wife of the finance spokesman at Westminster ,Stewart Hosie both Dundee politicians . It would appear that through discussions surrounding this campaign the campaigners have received promising feedback which led them to believe that there was the possibility of Frank’s law being addressed in the forth coming Scottish parliament.
This would have had to have been included in the manifesto announced last Wednesday . Unfortunately ( and as I have highlighted in a previous blog) this manifesto will be notable for what was not included rather than what was included.
It would appear that despite the promising noises made by the various politicians regarding this important issue there is not the political will to do anything about it.
If we are to be a mature country we must care for all elements of our population , more especially the elderly as they have done their bit in life and paid their dues . It is up to us now to do our bit and stand by those who through no fault of their own become ill and require a different level of care. 
A wee story of how other countries treat their elderly.

A few years ago whilst visiting China with a very dear Chinese friend of mine, and arriving in Beijing Airport , we were confronted with a line of people waiting for taxis , there must have been over 100 people in this line. Although I was not in the least amused , we took our place in the line. There was a young lady in uniform at the head of the line placing people in the taxis. She looked along the line to where we were , walked up to us and opened the barrier. I asked Felice what was happening and she said that we were to go to the front of the line , puzzled I asked why and she said ” because you are old”. Well you can imagine my indignation and I point blank refused to come out of the line ,until Felice reminded me that we were in a communist country and if I caused a fuss I was likely to be arrested. So the two extremes there, but the point is that they revere and respect their elderly and give them what consideration they can. So why can’t to we do that ? Why can’t we just get some of our priorities right.
So keep fighting Sharon and Amanda and beware of false prophets sent by the SNP  to keep you quiet until after the election and keep in mind this, you are right.