This is a poem written by myself as a ‘human of Scotland’. I am also a retired NHS doctor who worked for over 25 years in Scottish hospitals. As a doctor and as a citizen of Scotland I was invited to be part of a number of so-called “consultations” by so-called “independent” organisations. Invariably these organisations worked in “partnership” with the Scottish Government.

This poem is not based on any political views; rather it offers thoughts on how organisations use [or misuse] language. The poem also does not shy away of asking, behind all the ‘spin’, where Power really lies in Scotland?


‘Alliance’ – a word we hear a lot aboot in Scotland.
But whit dis it mean?
In oor auld family dictionary ‘alliance’ is to be found somewhere atween:
‘allure’ and ‘alligator’.
But the dictionary defines it as:
‘a union by treaty or marriage: a partnership’.

Did ye ken that Scotland has its vairy own Alliance:
Health and Social Care ALLIANCE Scotland.
This ALLIANCE is in ‘partnership’ with the Scottish Government –
as set oot in a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’.

The ALLIANCE speaks tae us, the “Humans of Scotland”.
Promising that we are “at the Centre”.
As “trusted neutrals” the ALLIANCE will “actively listen” with “intelligent kindness”.

The ALLIANCE-brand champions “courageous leadership” –
leadership that enhances “trust and relationships” with the “humans of Scotland”.

“Have Your Say” the ALLIANCE invites.
Well this poem seeks tae oblige.

Orwell once said of ‘SPIN’, that as a word, it wis used as if it were:
‘no more harmful than a ride on a merry-go-round’.
In Animal Farm Orwell also reminded us that ‘the object of power is power’.
The  ALLIANCE keeps reminding us that we are  ‘humans of Scotland’.
[Although it has to be said, some humans are mair equal than ithers].

St Andrew’s Hoose in Edinburgh is where oor Government operates.
Wan of Scotland’s finest historians described this building as:
“brooding and authoritarian”  just right foran occupying power”.
Is it here that we find a partnership atween ‘allure’ and ‘alligator’?


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