Sunday, 19 June 2011

Edwin Morgan - the "Game Maker"

The SNP, and the rest of Scotland, has been stunned by a £1m donation from the estate of the late poet Edwin Morgan.

Personally, I'm stunned that a poet could become a millionaire, twice over, because he has left another £1m to create a poetry prize for young Scottish writers.

Morgan, who died last year aged 90, was appointed Scots Makar, Scotland's poet laureate, by Jack McConnell in 2004.

The SNP is still in the dark about the donation but if confirmed, and there's no reason to doubt the story, the £1m Morgan legacy will be the biggest single contribution in the history of the party.

It far outstrips anything the Brian Soutar gave Salmond for this year's election campaign.(It is ironic that these two big donations come from either end of the rainbow. I'm glad to see that NUS Scotland is at least protesting the Stagecoach boss's knighthood for services to homophobia).

Anyway, the immediate point is that the Morgan money can go straight into an SNP campaign war chest in the run-up to the 2014 independence referendum.

Meanwhile, Scottish Labour's accounts are about as robust as fistful of Greek government bonds while the party struggles with the existential questions ranging from what it is about to how does it find money to say that.

In modern political campaigning those who spend the most tend to win the most and the Morgan legacy could be a game-making donation to the SNP's independence cause.

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