What follows is an international article setting out the absolute stupidity of SSE ENERGY SERVICES and the advice they were giving their customers on having to stay warm this winter.

It suggests a company minus any concern for their customers, other than make fun of them. Unfortunately Scotland is associated with their name so some of this callous disregard of their responsibilities becomes associated with our country. Some of the advice is sensible but some are just totally insensitive, especially when you consider the elderly and infirm are amongst the worst affected groups.

I am glad they are now apologising but I would hope there is serious internal review into how their company ever became embroiled in such a damaging and insensitive story in the first place. Have they never heard of fuel poverty? It is a killer problem…literally!

Energy and heating costs are going to be a huge issue this winter. The price increases coming in April/May are going to be a big issue in the Local Elections.

The Scottish Government have already made a huge mistake having promised to create a not for profit energy company using Scotland’s renewable energy resource to offer competitive rates for all Scottish consumers. To choose this time to renege on that clear pledge ( which got Nicola Sturgeon a standing ovation when she announced it) is yet another example of the complete lack of strategic thought that plagues her Government. 

The reason the costs are soaring is because the cost of fossil fuels are going through the roof. Thanks to the foresight and actions of Alex Salmond’s Government Scotland’s energy needs are almost totally supplied by RENEWABLE sources. Based on usage there is no justification for these increases in Scotland other than that all generation is put into the “National Grid” and then sold back to us at inflated prices, another “Better Together” moment.

Here is the article

Follow us at @BloombergUK for the latest news and analysis.

A U.K. energy supplier has been forced to apologize after suggesting customers keep warm this winter by eating ginger or having a hula-hoop contest.

SSE Energy Services, a unit of Ovo Group, posted an online guide to keeping warm without cranking up the heating. It came as U.K. households face a $24 billion spike in their energy bills in April following a surge in the cost of gas.

The company has now taken down the guide, saying the content was “poorly judged and unhelpful.” 

“We are embarrassed and sincerely apologize,” it said by email, as lawmakers including Darren Jones, chair of the business, energy and industrial strategy committee, joined in criticism of Britain’s second-biggest supplier.

The suggestions to customers included putting on a sweater and Merino-wool socks, cleaning the house or eating foods such as potatoes or lentils that stimulate digestion to warm up the body. An accompanying photo showed an elderly couple dancing in the kitchen.

Other recommendations included ways to use heat more efficiently, such as installing more insulation, closing doors to rooms that aren’t often occupied or using a smart thermostat to better regulate energy consumption.

While these measures might make some savings for households, they underscore the stark reality that neither homeowners nor governments can do much to cut energy prices significantly without addressing soaring wholesale costs. And as the U.K. price cap rises later this year, the pain in the wallet will only increase — even if customers cuddle their pets or sit on heated cushions.






I am, as always

Yours for Scotland


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26 thoughts on “JUST HOW WRONG CAN YOU GET IT?

  1. not so many years ago when you had a Scottish actor in a television soap or play s/he was cast as the drunk, the uncouth, something below the standard of expected in a civilised society. talking about this at the time my friend was getting a bit hot under the collar over this, saying how wrong this was that this was the face the world saw of Scotland – I said what does it matter so long as Scottish actors are getting work. but as for the rest, yes this is all part of the Better to Gether legacy. the news yesterday was that the government would pay up to change the dangerous cladding on buildings – and about time too, you might say. but wait a minute the government does not have any money, that money is taxpayers money. so not only are the building companies that caused the problem (and cost the lives of people) being let off the hook, (again) but nowhere in Scotland was there a dwelling that had this cladding in place, but I do not hear the PM coming out the front door of number 10 (as Cameron did the day after the No Vote, announcing English Votes for English Laws) since this only applies in England Scottish taxpayers will be exempt from paying. When anyone tells me that Scotland is too poor to go it alone I think of the bills that Scottish taxpayers receive for being part of the Better to Gether Union.

    Liked by 13 people

    1. One good deed from Johnson. He has made it plain to the world that he and his English (plus a few Scottish) cronies are capable only of lies and theft. It is imperative his type are cleared from Holyrood before we regain our independence.

      Liked by 12 people

  2. We could solve our fuel bill crisis in a heartbeat if we just harnessed the hot air coming out of Ian “Blah Blah” Blackford.

    Liked by 17 people

  3. The uk is a corporatocracy. Companies like this are running riot. If only we had politicians with the courage to take them on.
    As for the national power company, did the SNP or the greens for that matter (who also opposed it in the end), provide a reason other than its too difficult?
    I’m wondering if the policy was ever properly thought through in the first place before her conference fanfare. Probably not. Perhaps, just as likely, the Scottish govt caved in to the lobbyists.

    Liked by 14 people

  4. Probably like many on here I grew up in a council house without central heating. We had one coal fire with a back boiler and in the Winter the water tank banged and groaned due to large fire feeding it. We often went to bed with ice on the inside of the single pane glass window of the bedroom.

    This is not a “good old days” post. My family were very far from wealthy but I never once remember seeing that coal bunker not topped on a regular basis and gas for cooking was always there although you needed a coin to get it.. We always had one warm room.

    I use the above story to frame the illusion of progress we now have. From housing, electrical appliances to clothing it seems much better but the reality is a bigger treadmill with more bling. In the past the income of the majority was spent every week on just living. Most families lived pay packet to pay packet but with little debt. The consumer market was to draw people into greater and greater debt. You now don’t only spend your monthly pay you have promised a fair proportion of your future income to big business.
    The move from weekly cash pay packet to a monthly bank transfer…who did that help. It was not the employee. Those who struggled to budget week to week struggled even more.The same happened with the move to give the unemployed their rent money instead of paying the landlord direct. What did they think would happen when you give those struggling “extra” money.

    The founder of the Bank of England stated “We have created Wealth from nothing”. Those with money put it in the Banks and it was loaned at interest.

    So when you switch on Sky and sit down in that comfortable new suite in your warm house think hard about if you are really that better off than the Crofter during the clearances?

    The mine owner once paid workers with tokens that they could only spend in the mine owners shop. Have we really moved on that much?

    In my own life I noticed that a tipping point exists and once you cross that income line it does get much better. Sadly many who do cross that line forget what was once their lot.

    I’ll get to my point now. The basic cost of living ( food, heating etc) are a disproportionate percentage of income for the poorest 20/30% of society but it never gets properly discussed never mind addressed.

    The heating cost saga has always been there. The gas from the old coin meter was far more expensive per unit than the direct connection.
    Borrowing money if you have a good credit rating will be 2 or 3% interest. For the poorest pay day loans of 99%.
    Climbing out of the hole doesn’t look much different than the 1950s to me.

    The buddy of a Tory MP making millions from a face mask contract is a shrewd businessman. A mother shoplifting to feed hungery kids is a thief….divide and rule,divide and rule

    Liked by 18 people

    1. do you remember the advertising slogan for Access “Access take the waiting out of wanting” the message is clear, if you want it you can have it NOW and there must have been thousands – hundreds of thousands of people sucked into debt from which they would never escape. so we are our own worst enemies when it comes to debt.

      Fuel is different the reason we have the problems with fuel today is the Maggie Thatcher legacy – before Thatcher, the government was in charge of such things, there was a nationalised mining industry that was linked to a nationalised railways, system (and one of the remaining reasons that the country held onto steam trains for so long) the trains delivered coal to the nationalised power stations at a set rate, no matter from which part of the country that coal came, everything worked in harmony – Thatcher destroyed the harmony when she broke it all up and sold it off to private enterprise – now the government can wash its hands and say “Nothing to do with us, we can not interfere in private companies”. this is the state of affairs that has led us to this position, no real government only big business and financial institutions running the show. Okay so the days of Old King Coal are gone we had to move away from coal but we did not have to end the government’s management of these industries that kept the lights on and our homes warm. It’s your country mate, the solution is in your hands vote the bastards out.

      Liked by 9 people

    2. I agree. I got caught up in the whole “owning stuff” charade and ended up self sequestrating to get out of debt. I then had to go back to the frugal ways of my parents. Since moving back into social housing over 14 years ago I have lived without a telephone, fridge, freezer, conventional cooker, or TV. I have an economy 7 meter and used to charge up my digital radio and my laptop (no internet) at the cheap night rate). I’d do my washing then too- I did have the luxury of a washing machine – and I’d often shower(electric shower) and boil the kettle before the cheap rate went off in the morning. I would fill a flask from that boiled water to keep me in tea for most of the day. I learned to cook pasta and rice as well as boil eggs in a food flask with water from the kettle. My staple diet consisted of cheap basic packets of noodles or instant mash, cheap tins of peas and the cheapest quiche I could buy, These were all divided into four giving me four main meals for around 30-50p each meal. I never used the storage heaters or the water heating system and still have a good supply of cheap, oversized jumpers (Mostly second hand or under a fiver) that I would wear in layers to keep warm. As a present my sister had a multi stove installed in the old blocked up fireplace and I would use it to heat up soup or make toast and also to heat up my bed/living room. .I still ration myself to 5 bags of smokeless fuel each winter and I collect any old wood lying around to top up the coal (I’ve even raided the local bonfire, before bonfire night under cover of darkness for stuff to burn. For two years I managed to get a “no standing charge” tariff on my electricity and the first year my annual spend was £16 – it reduced the second year and then Ofgem decided that people with prepayment meters could no longer benefit from the no standing charge tariff. I now put £15 per month in the meter and plan to pay these b*****ds as little as I can physically get away with. You can imagine how I feel when people try to tell me how to save money on energy.
      It was a hard few years and I’m in a slightly better position now but it did teach me what things I could live without and now I am just determined to spend as little of the money I have as possible and not become another mass consumer -and the best part is that I am debt free and I am no longer afraid of threatening letters from debt collectors coming through my door.
      I might add that when my father died aged 86 in 2001 he had all the things that I can no longer afford to run. His wallet was never empty and his house was never cold – and he had electric storage heating.
      When discussing independence with a local Yoon he tried to tell me that we were all now better off than our parents generation and that independence would spoil all that. I didn’t miss him and hit the wall.

      Liked by 12 people

    3. I too grew up in a council house ( Southside of Glasgow ) though my parents had blocked-off the open fire , not sure why , maybe to cut down on the time required to empty the ashes and light and the dust and stoor generated by it : in its hearth sat a 3 bar electric fire , our only source of heat in the house and – like yourself , remember with a shiver the ice on the inside of the windows in wintertime , also like you , this is not some misery memoir , the majority of our community were in a similar position , none of us froze to death !

      You make excellent points in your post Clootie and I agree that though , superficially at least , things appear to have progressed for most people , nonetheless * the poor you will always have with you * even if the conception of poverty changes with time .

      Though I’d maybe rephrase that biblical quote to * the poor you will always have with you , as long as you allow private greed to reign over public need ” .

      Essential services like Health , Education , Food , Heating should NEVER be in the control of those whose primary interests are lining their own pockets and those of the parasites referred to as * Shareholders * .

      I often forget to say so but ……good and very relevant article Iain

      Liked by 11 people

    1. I really wish that there was a way that we could cut off the electricity line to south of the border in order to force the Westminster government to remedy this unfair situation.
      I’m not suggesting that it should be permanent (though I do look forward to a time after Independence when we can actually charge for it as a Scottish Export) but as a way of putting pressure on the UK government to change the unjust charging system. Effectively this means that Scotland, the coldest part of the UK and the richest in energy, has to pay the highest charges in Europe.

      Liked by 3 people

  5. I’m not sure that “Scotland’s energy needs are almost totally supplied by RENEWABLE sources.”. Much of the heating in Scotland is powered by gas.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ach Ian, I got all excited and thought that Sturgeon had revealed her “secret plan”, declared independence and that we were all going to have to eat humble pie. Never mind, one can but dream.
    As for keeping warm -I’m fed up with these middle class idiots who try to teach their grannies to suck eggs in telling them how to keep warm – a generation that grew up without central heating and with winters where the ice formed inside the windows. In a modern civilised society people should no longer have to try to find ways to keep warm. We produce masses of energy and to over charge to the extent that energy companies do is just profiteering. Having said that, the amount Scottish producers are charged for supplying the national grid compared to the subsidies English and Welsh suppliers get for doing so just proves, once again, that we are the ones propping up the poor relations, keeping ouir neighbours going at our own expense. If only your headline had meant what i thought it did

    Liked by 10 people

    1. Talking about Sturgeon’s secret plans – did you hear on Channel 4 news yesterday the link man in the studio asking the reporter in Scotland “and what about an independence referendum, the FM said she would be looking at that after COVID and that seems to be coming to an end? the reporter said – the FM is still looking at an independence referendum in 2023, (still kicking the can down the road) but added the caveat that it was up to Boris if of course it was Boris that was PM then) – so looked as if the press is already primed to keep the Sturgeon fan club on board by talking about another referendum in 2023 and it will not have escaped your notice that there is a big election coming up around then. This is a concerted effort to keep the Union intact and plays well into Sturgeon’s barrow.

      Liked by 13 people

      1. And still people cling on to the hope that this lot will lead us to indpendence. It’s a broken down bus with no hope of ever reaching the destination. Sensible people will get off and walk or look for another ofrm of transoprt rather than wait for a non existent mechanic.

        Liked by 11 people

  7. Nordstream 2 with its abundance of cheap Russian gas, a weak, bumbling EU and the US government’s habitual protection of its oil producers’ markets has nothing to do with our soaring energy bills, of course. Aye right!

    Liked by 7 people

  8. Hydro was its own generator – selling into the grid was on a spot trading basis. Hydro was the supplier and generator for north of Scotland. Then the Hydro board sold out to Southern electricity and the old, compassionate, responsible Hydro saw an exercise in ethnic cleansing. Now we have Scotlands hydro power managed by the south of England with a few bums on seats in Perth.

    Liked by 10 people

  9. Heard this story on radio Shortbread (Scotland) yesterday, and Dougie Fraser a BBC employee reporting on it made light of the offensive remarks by the SSE/OVO employee. Scotland is swimming in energy sources wind, water, oil, gas etc yet a third of Scots are in fuel poverty having to choose between heating or eating, why I ask? when we have abundant power to heat Scotland are Scot shivering in the cold, whilst others are asking for cold foods at foodbanks because they cannot afford to heat it at home.

    Sturgeon has let us down badly in this area (and Many others for that matter) energy is a reserved matter but if she’d have held an indyref or plebiscitary election post Brexit energy would be in the hands of our government.

    Does anyone think that SNP MSPs or Sturgeon herself will need to choose between heating or eating this Winter? and there’s a hammer blow on the way as energy prices are set to rocket come April throwing many more Scots families into fuel poverty.

    What’s the point of having ample energy in Scotland if Scots can’t benefit from it, lets give Sturgeon a rude awakening come May’s council elections and vote for the Alba party.

    Liked by 13 people

  10. O/T Iain but important I think.

    This is extremely serious but I can’t find a link to it in the National newspaper. Its in the paper version.

    The Scottish government are attempting to set up a body that would see the Scottish judicial system accountable to it, lawyers and judges have vowed to fight the proposal as it amounts to interference with the rule of law.

    This answering to the Scottish government would remove the independence of the judiciary in legal matters. The judiciary has said it will resist this with all it strength and any other attempts by the Scottish government or the Holyrood parliament to remove the court regulatory powers.

    Another step in Sturgeon’s plan to turn Scotland into an authoritarian state.

    Liked by 12 people

    1. I only saw this on the Herald – the rest of the press is completely ignoring this. This tends to suggest Sturgeon has an agenda that is acceptable to the UK state – it does look to me as if she is piloting the removal of an independent judiciary for all of the UK. The independence of the judges has been a thorn in the side of the corruptocracy of Westminster for a long time. Their puppet is testing the waters.

      Liked by 10 people

    2. Roddy Dunlop QC Dean of Faculty of Advocates and the man that told the Scottish government to concede the case in the Alex Salmond Judicial Review or he and junior counsel would cease to represent them as the case was “unstateable” has a spoken about this on twitter – the Faculty of Advocates AND Judges Scotland against this!

      “It would involve taking a profession that has for centuries been actually and visibly independent of the Executive, responsible only to the independent judiciary,… That would be such a retrograde step, with no countervailing benefit, that it cannot sensibly be supported.”

      It’s almost like the Sturgeon Nicola Party are embarking on a “scorched earth” policy of annoying every section of civic society and tainting the cause of independence forever…

      Liked by 8 people

  11. No one should be under any illusion as to what fuel poverty is.

    Every school day throughout Scotland children go to school leaving from a house where the meter has run out and there is no gas and or electricity to heat and light the house.

    No one should either be in any doubt that the provision of electricity and gas is a huge corporate business. And as corporate businesses well skilled in extracting maximum profit from consumers. Over nearly forty percent of houses now have metered electricity and gas supply. No money to prepay, no heat or lighting it is as simple as that. And the industry has a word for it. Voluntary disconnection. Sounds good, in practice absolutely awful – no cooking, no lighting, no heating, no washing – and all voluntary too.

    And all the time whilst voluntarily disconnected the meter is wracking up standing charges for the days disconnected so that the charges can be surreptitiously debited at the next top up. Or what of topping the card up. Used to be that people, often in extremist, could top up with their last remaining couple of quid to keep some light. That was until British Gas introduced a minimum top up of ten pounds, and ten pounds that some folks didn’t have. Pressure ultimately persuaded them to reduce this to £5.00 but again you get the measure of the art form of extracting money is.

    But what of those who pay monthly, pay quarterly. Many of these people struggle to pay to heat and light their homes. And if they pay late it’s fines added to the bill. And of course there is the favourite ploy of predating the bill thereby giving folks maybe only four of five days to pay their bills.

    And of the soaring prices. Well that’s because of the soaring cost of fossil fuel.so tell me then, in a country like Scotland self sufficient in electricity produced by onshore and offshore wind, hydro power and gas from our own fields, why the soaring prices.

    All in all this arrogant out of reality advice by SSE says it all. And to look at history, it’s like Ireland where they shipped wheat out whilst the population starved in their millions. Starvation in the land of plenty.

    Dulce st decorum est in pro patria mori. Especially the old, sick and infirm. Tee hee hee – eh, let em eat cake.

    Liked by 5 people

  12. Approximately two miles from where live there is a double gas pipeline, if I remember, these are each about 30 inches in diameter, they carry liquid gas across the border at Gretna, this comes ashore at St Fergus and is piped all they way to England, there are other similar pipelines down the the east coast. I am lost as to why Scotland has to provide this to England when we are in fuel poverty, we supply this virtually free to the country next door. The map of these pipelines can be seen at.


    I have to blame the Romans for a lot of our problems, instead of building walls, they should have dug a mile wide navigable channel from the Solway to the North Sea.

    Scotland’s resources are clearly not for our use in this union of unequals. With oil and gas, electricity, granite from Glensanda Quarry and lots of other examples of this removal without payment for the benefit of England. I realise England is bankrupt but that does not mean that they can continue to steal our money and resources from us like common thieves and pickpockets as they have done all over the planet in the past.

    As for the SNP and Green’s abandonment of oil from the combo field we will be importing oil at huge cost from places we have no environmental control over, so not so green. Another example of lost wealth to Scotland. Without oil we will be unable to make plastics for car interiors, bumpers, laminated windscreens, all industrial and household paints are plastic based, polyester and epoxy compounds, tarmac, tyres for cars, bicycles, industrial drive belts, soles for shoes, PVC windows, doors, underground drainage, water supply, many other building materials in fact thousands of items require oil derivatives, you name it, oil and gas does not only gets burned. I don’t know if wee Patrick can ride his bike on metal rims, it appears to be what he is advocating. I can see he has no understanding of environmental or business matters and concentrates on the only issue he has some knowledge about, namely Pat and Nicola’s trans obsessed nonsense. All other concerns abandoned, she is unafected by fuel poverty so just ignores it. Wheres my next photoshoot I hear her say?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. If I may, you missed out products used in farming like fertilisers, pesticides and many chemicals used in modern
      medicine manufacture. I would recommend watching Rob Newman’s history of Oil on YouTube. It’s funny and very
      informative too. Towards the end he spells out the fact that oil is food in the modern world.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Rentier capitalists: professional idlers who produce nothing but consume wildly with their unearned income while contributing zero to society; what a laugh those with pharmaceutical and energy interests must be having right now … at the expense of everybody else.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Ah’ve read aw they comments an’ thairs no much that ah widnae agree wi’, but nane o’ it will be sortit greetin amangst wirsels. We huv the choice o’ goin’ oan the streets an’ statin’ oor case or bide in the hoose an stare at the fower wa’s. The fowk at Holyrood will no be affected an’ as lang as we pit up wi’ it thir’l be nae chynge.

    Come the time o’ the elections it will be ower late. Some will hae died o’ the cauld fir the want o’ oor intervention the choice shouldnae be hard tae mak, should it?

    Liked by 1 person

  15. ” Where have all the flowers gone?” – tonight’s news, OVO is departing Perth – “When will WE ever learn?”.

    OVO did provide commitments and assurances, but that was back then you see and perhaps OVO reasoned then that Independence was imminent and so best have a substantial presence in Scotland. First Minister?

    The national grid does appear to service the interests of England, and Scotland appears to dutifully service the grid by supplying our excess energy. – at a cost? Question – is this excess power supply a freebee, if not which organisation(s) in Scotland receives said payment? First Minister?

    Independence is a mindset: if only we had an independence-minded SNP government. A National Energy company could manage our consumption needs, develop a grid system for Scotland, and negotiate a clear understood payment arrangement for supply to the the UK “national” grid. First Minister?

    Is it correct that crude oil from the wells in Scottish territorial waters is loaded to ships, transported to the EU for refining to value-added products and then sold back to us? First Minister?

    Is it correct that the income from the sale of this crude oil from Scottish resources is defined by the UK government as ex-regio and so the income is not credited to Scotland but goes direct to the UK Westminster treasury? First Minister?

    The Scots Tory leader Douglas Ross has today made his views on PM Johnson very clear, and since been scorned as a lightweight by his Etonian colleague Rees-Mog. What is your view, First Minister?

    And word of caution, you First Minister are reliant upon PM Johnson awarding you a “gold standard” S30 permission to hold a referendum.

    Liked by 3 people

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