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Can Trump buy influence?

December 18th, 2012 by

Has Donald Trump sunk to a new low? On Friday, he splashed two full-page adverts in Scottish newspapers linking new wind farms to the Lockerbie disaster - and called for people to email Alex Salmond with their opposition.

It’s hard to imagine what was going through his mind when he agreed ads which said:
Tourism will suffer and the beauty of your country is in jeopardy! This is the same mind that backed the release of terrorist al-Megrahi, ‘for humane reasons’ – after he ruthlessly killed 270 people on Pan-Am flight 103 over Lockerbie.

Trump thinks that he can buy opposition to wind farms by flashing his cash to push misleading information. But what if we could turn the tables on Trump and show him that for all his money, he’s no match for people power?

Do you know why Trump is kicking up such a fuss? Because he thinks a new wind turbine test centre will ruin the feel of hisluxury golf course on the Aberdeenshire coast. He’s throwing everything he’s got at trying to stop the planning application from going through.

But there’s huge potential for Scotland to become a world leader in green energy, bringing new jobs for Scots and more investment for the economy.

38 Degrees members have a strong history of standing up to big money. Big companies sponsoring the 2012 Olympics were hoping for a windfall from tax dodging during the Games – until we got them to promise to pay taxes on their Olympic profits.

And we’ve stood up to Trump before. Along with the campaign group Tripping up Trump, we stood shoulder to shoulder with brave local residents when Donald Trump wanted to evict families from their homes in Menie.

Together we can flood Alex Salmond with messages of support for renewable energy and make sure that Trump’s plan backfires. It takes two minutes to write to Alex Salmond – click here to get started.

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  • Mackie D

    And how much did the wind lobby pay you to send this out to 38 Degrees members? Or are you just after a career with the SNP?

  • http://www.facebook.com/maida.comment Maida Comment

    I think 38 degrees are in the pockets of big wind power…yet they campaign against building houses in the English countryside…,,….bloody hypocrites!! Your homes are not being surrounded by these monster Turbines!!

  • WD Preston

    I have supported 38 degrees in the past because I thought they stood up for ordinary people and were opposed to big business manipulating the people of this country to get their way. I am aghast if they are going to support the desecration of the beautiful Scottish countryside with these inefficient and over subsidised windfarms. I am certainly going to consider whether I want to be part of an organisation that could support these costly things. The cost and environmental damage caused by the construction of these things can never be justified.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1115170717 Alan Sloman

    You have’t a clue! The industrialisation of the Highlands with wind farms is an appalling scandal.The SNP government should be ashamed of themselves. If this is what you think democracy is about it shows just how out of touch you are. People may well be “anti-Trump” but they are also anti-windfarm. Do your homework!

  • AlanR

    Alan Sloman. I couldn’t have put it better myself.
    Susannah, Please, don’t get people writing to Salmond about furthering windfarms. Scotland is going to be one big awful mess as it is. And he (Salmond) will use the correspondents to his own advantage. Do your homework. Thanks

  • BG!

    Some quotes from 38 Degrees campaigns:

    “Take a stand for the environment…” https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/page/speakout/tell-clegg-to-stand-up-for-climate?js=false

    “Beautiful areas of unspoilt wilderness get dug up…” http://www.38degrees.org.uk/page/speakout/tell-nick-clegg-to-take-a-stand-on-climate-change

    “Swathes of pristine countryside and vital green fields around our towns and cities could be put in jeopardy.” and “Our planning ststam should ensure local voices are heard and work to protect our green areas for future generations. Once we lose our countryside, we lose it forever.” http://www.38degrees.org.uk/page/s/save-our-countryside

    “…make protecting our environment and countryside a priority.” http://www.38degrees.org.uk/page/s/dont-scrap-environment-laws

    Yep, all quotes from this very website.

    With all that in mind, how can you possibly condone Salmond’s rape of Scotland’s priceless landscapes which, incidentally, and contrary to his belief, don’t belong to him? Yes, go green, it’s a good idea, but let’s not be fooled – these turbines are not “green” and they are costing US a fortune. How much are you willing to pay for “free” electricity? So far I’ve not had one KWh of free electricity, yet I still pay a green levy.

    It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee before AS swaps it for some ersatz chicory infusion and then charges you an extra tenner for it. The very notion of pitting Salmond against Trump is a ridiculous idea – they’re opposite edges of the same sword that’s being used to cut the heart out of Scotland.

  • Chris G

    Have to agree with everything expressed in the 6 comments so far. Absolute madness to support windfarms in a beautiful country such as Scotland.

  • Anonymous

    So far all these comments are patent nonsense. Donald Trump is trying to oppose an off-shore wind development in the North Sea.

  • Anonymous

    How about you actually understand off-shore wind development.

  • BG!

    The point is that it’s fine to oppose Trump and his inappropriate actions, but to tie that opposition into an endorsement of Salmond’s policy on wind-power is unnecessary and misleading. Many people are opposed to Trump’s actions AND to Salmond’s policy, but the wording of the pre-prepared letter does not allow that, and that’s why I won’t be sending the letter as it’s currently worded.

    Anyway, all we’ve done is express our feelings about the protagonists and their policies/actions. You’ve had a go at the people who have left comments. Feel free to reap what you’ve sown.

  • Andy

    You are way off the mark with this one. I have lost all respect for 38 Degrees and unscubscribed my email membership as a result.
    Whilst Trump is a replusive character and I agree with a campaign against him, this campaign has clearly been hijacked by an SNP supporter and therefore has no credibility. Why should people be emailing support to Alex Salmond (the man who struck up a dodgy deal to let Trump into Scotland in the first place)? Also, the SNPs environmental policy is a sham designed to win votes and is a disaster for Scotland. Trump is no where near as big a threat to the future of Scotland as Salmond is.
    Senior management at 38 Degrees should be looking into how a campaign clearly designed to promote the agenda of a political party was allowed to slip through the net. People power has failed and I will be writing to every newspaper in the courty to expose this.

  • Shandog

    I am disappointed with this. I have been a supporter of 38
    Degrees since the forests campaign and have seen many good successes in other
    campaigns.

    As a resident of NE Scotland I am horrified by the wholesale
    industrialisation of beautiful countryside, particularly the wild land, because
    of the building of large wind factories. The Scottish government is
    disregarding local people’s views while big businesses tread on us. Local
    governments are being asked to pay legal fees when they wish to fight planning
    applications which they cannot afford; even if they are successful, big
    businesses go to national government and these decisions are local decisions
    are often overturned.

    Hutton’s Arse , a book written
    by Dr. Malcolm Rider, 2007, puts the issue of wind factories this way:

    “In 2006 there were 667 turbines in Scotland which produce 4%
    of Scotland’s electricity. They have a theoretical capacity of 7881GWh but only
    produce 25% of this. They did however gain £90 million in subsidy (£45 per MWh)
    from consumers. Grids and pylons must be built to carry the full capacity which
    is rarely needed. Academic calculations find that the present turbines in Scotland
    save 0.85 megatonnes of CO2 per year, which is 0.15% of the UK’s total
    emissions of 551 million tonnes. The highlands are stunning in
    scenery, special in geology, unique in history and rich in archaeology. They
    are the last refuge for many wild birds, animals and plants: a very rare place
    of wilderness. And they are empty of people. Follow the west wind from the
    outer isles across the Minches and then to the mountain fastness of Sutherland like
    a soaring golden eagle the land is yours. For man beast and bird it is a
    freedom that is the breath of life, the freedom of inspiration.

    Into this drive a bulldozer, drive a huge road, drive a subsidy
    and drive profits. Build a Wind farm. This astounding area is being destroyed
    by stupidity, politics and profit. I do not understand Lairds, crofters,
    councillors, planners, shareholders, those who live here and the many who do
    not, who will destroy all this without thought. The highlands are being humiliated
    by wind farm developers who insist they are saving the environment. They lie;
    they are here to make a profit. Wind farms produce very little and intermittent
    electricity. Most of the time they do not work: how can the blade of a
    bulldozer ripping up 6000 years of beautifully preserved archaeology be saving
    the environment? How can the turbine blades smashing a Golden Eagle to bits be
    saving the environment? How can the government of Scotland destroy such a
    prize, and use public money to do it?”

  • Mackie D

    Before you dismiss everyone else as talking nonsense, maybe you should read and think about what has been written. I personally can’t stand Donald Trump, I didn’t want his golf course there, and I DO agree with the offshore windfarm. What I don’t like is the fact that Susannah wants us all to tell Alex Salmond that he’s some kind of hero. Windfarms are going up all over the place, in highly inappropriate places. His ego is far too big already and these policies are destroying the Highlands.

  • Alex

    I am astounded by this ill-judged campaign and no longer wish to be involved with 38 degrees. Like other correspondents, I am anti-Trump and his insensitive developments, but Susannah does not appear to realise that the wind power sector is also driven by large companies who make considerable amounts of money from developments. I am supportive of wind power development in principle but am concerned about the inappropriately sited developments that are now evident (and will be seen in future with consented schemes) as pressure for this form of renewable energy increases in Scotland. Asking 38 degree supporters to write to Alex Salmond to support wind energy policy to somehow ‘get at’ Trump is illogical and is likely to help justify the SNPs drive to approve further wind farm developments which may lead to more inappropriately sited developments further damaging Scotland’s landscape. I would urge you to think very carefully about continuing with this campaign and to undertake thorough research in future.

  • afootinthehills

    I am appalled at this campaign and you clearly haven’t the faintest understanding of what is at stake here. I’m not going to repeat what has already been said by others – just listen to them and stop this now.

  • Fiona

    What a disgrace!!
    I have unsubscribed my membership of 38 degrees and have lost all respect – your credibility has gone.
    Support Alex Salmond destroying the Scottish countryside (and Scotland as a whole)? NO CHANCE! Get a grip 38 degrees – this campaign has nothing to do with trump and has everything to do with one of your staff promoting the scumbag SNP party.

  • Jamie

    I agree with the comments on here criticising this campaign and also plan to bin my 38 degrees membership. I WOULD ADVISE OTHERS TO DO THE SAME – PEOPLE POWER!!

    It says in your FAQ that 38 Degrees is not aligned with any political party. Why then are you allowing one of your staff to promote the SNP under the smokescreen of a Donald Trump issue? What a sham!

  • BG!

    Hang on a minute, we’ve been missing the obvious.

    The question is “Can Trump buy influence?”

    Well, the answer is obviously “yes”.

    So what? Haven’t 38 Degrees been doing the same for a while now, with our donations instead of their own money?

    Looky here:

    https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/page/-/images/NHS_Jeremy_blog_580.jpg
    http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5227/5757508107_cf5f8fa13a.jpg
    http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5254/5552790562_0e4b417455.jpg
    http://desmond.yfrog.com/Himg619/scaled.php?tn=0&server=619&filename=a21r.jpg&xsize=640&ysize=640
    http://www.38degrees.org.uk/page/-/images/taxadsblog.jpg

    You can draw your own conclusions from that.

    I’d say that what’s good for the goose is good for the gander.

  • arfa murray

    Well done for having a go against Trump. It’s interesting that your campaign has got all the Luddites crawling out of the wood work demonstrating their complete lack of understanding of the actual specific topic. We’re talking about offshore windfarms off Aberdeen beach in this instance and not onshore installations. The proposed turbines will at least provide some points of interest from Aberdeen beach in addition to the numerous supply vessels waiting to get into harbour.

    Perhaps Trump’s influence has spread further than we imagine. I can declare no links to the Trump organisation or any subsidiary. Can the other contributors do the same?

  • BG!

    Just to clarify something. Something important. Something that not all readers of this post have understood:

    Susannah’s blog post at the top of this page does indeed specify the offshore windfarm, but the pre-prepped email that’s to be sent to Salmond says something different, it says “stand up to Trump and support renewable energy in Scotland.” Send that and you are supporting his WHOLE policy, not solely his stance regarding offshore.

    If having the nouse to read ALL of the words makes me a Luddite, then that’s fine by me.

  • Mackie D

    I have a very good understanding of the subject and I’m all in favour for having a go at Trump. Please read our comments more carefully.

  • Mackie D

    38 Degrees also ran a campaign to save our forests. I wonder who they’d support if they find out that the reason for the sale of the forests was actually so they could turn them all into windfarms? Now that’s something you don’t read in mainstream media.

  • Mackie D

    It appears I’ve received another email from 38Degrees reminding me to tell Alex Salmond that his green policies are great. They are not. First they’re plastering the mountain landscape with giant windmills, thousands of miles of new hill tracks and millions of tonnes of concrete, then they’ll decide they can’t store the electricity so they’ll need to build more reservoirs thereby detroying the glens too. I’m afraid I cannot support this campaign and I cannot continue to support an organisation with political affiliations. Goodbye. Unsubscribe.

  • Mike Jackson

    I agree with the comments objecting to the tone of this campaign. Opposition to Trump and his destructive ways is one thing. Supporting wind-farms is quite another. Please don’t try and combine the two into an “if you’re anti-Trump, you’re pro-wind farm” as this just fosters the sort of only-two-sides-in-any-debate, “if you don’t agree with us on this, this and this then you’re with them” mentality which is why politics is in such a sorry state in the first place.
    For Trump versus the wind farm, as Henry Kissinger might put it … “It’s a pity they can’t both lose”

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=763576321 Laura Taylor

    Appalling campaign by 38 degrees,

    Donald Trump’s concern is an offshore wind farm next to his golf course.

    Take a look at Aberdeenshire as a whole with regard to onshore wind turbines, 615 wind turbines currently approved/operating, 330 turbines in the planning system waiting a decision – see: http://www.cawt.co.uk/index.php . There is a map showing all turbines in the system, approved, at planning, withdrawn, refused These can be located 400m-ish from your property if you are lucky enough to live in the Aberdeenshire countryside, does that sound appealing? Maybe the Strichen area would be preferred (see CAWT forum: http://www.cawt.co.uk/index.php?page=forum#/discussion/104/wind-farms-in-strichen), doesn’t seem to be too many wind turbine applications here, oh wait, of course…. that’s where Alex Salmond lives. Strange that.

  • JJ

    I am totally in favour of economically viable and sustainable renewable energy supplies, and of having a nationwide, in-depth, adult discussion on the short, medium and long-term future of of Renewable Energy, in fact I would suggest that this discussion is imperative and well overdue. However, I would contend that the wholesale obliteration of our beautiful countryside by on-shore windfarms – which are neither economically viable nor environmentally sustainable – is an absolute outrage, and is something which I would suggest that – far from supporting – we should all be doing our utmost to put an immediate stop to .

  • JJ

    Couldn’t have put it better myself !!!!