The only poll that matters

There’s been a bit of gloating from British nationalists this week over the opinion poll that never was. Those nats eh, what are they like. After Channel 4 broadcast its programme Brexit – What the Nation Really Thinks, claims were made on social media that the megapoll conducted for the show was giving a result of 52% in favour of Scottish independence. That turned out to be, to put it politely, misleading.

The poll was as misleading as the title of the Channel 4 programme, a more accurate title for which should have been Brexit – What England Really Thinks, as the programme failed to include a single political representative of any of what it pleases the British establishment to call the devolved nations while managing to give yet another platform to Nigel Farage to harrumph and normalise views that just very recently were seen as extreme right. Or Nigel Fucking Farage Dear God Get Him Aff Ma Telly, as he’s more accurately called in most Scottish households. I’ve recently discovered that I am older than Nigel. Which came as something of a surprise since he spends his life channelling the 1950s. But I digress.

Anyway, it’s not surprising that no Scottish representatives were included as Brexit is after all an exercise in English exceptionalism. The lack of Scottish, Welsh, or Northern Irish representation was fair enough, as Brexit has proven that the British state doesn’t give a toss what Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland think and the so-called Union is as fictional as the claims made in 2014 that Scotland was a much loved partner in a family of nations, or that Ruth Davidson is the most loved politician in Scotland – as opposed to being the most loved politician of the Scottish media, which is a different thing entirely.

The poll did include a question on Scottish independence, but not a straightforward one. Instead of asking how respondents would vote in a future independence referendum, and some of us are pressing for a Hell Yes! option on the ballot, the poll asked whether Brexit made respondents more or less likely to support Scottish independence. The result of that question was good for the indy campaign. 38% of respondents in Scotland reported that Brexit made them more likely to back independence, whereas only 25% said that it made them less likely to support it. In other words Brexit has made the Scottish electorate more disposed to look favourably on Scottish independence.

Some over-eager independence supporters extrapolated this poll question’s results onto the results of the last referendum and came up with the 52% support indy claim. This is methodologically unsound, to put it kindly, although not as unsound as Ruth Davidson’s repeated claims that Scotland doesn’t want another referendum. There was no need for it either, as other recent opinion polls have asked directly how Scotland would vote in an independence referendum should Brexit take place, and those polls have demonstrated a slight majority for independence – and that’s before an official campaign has even started.

All that the over-enthusiastic extrapolation achieved was to give opponents of independence something to gloat about, although we should be kind and allow them this, as they have precious little to feel good about otherwise. The reason that they are so angry and bitter is because they can see their beloved UK dissolve before their eyes. They know that independence is coming just as much as we do. Their only hope is to try to prevent another vote on independence from happening, because they know that once it does they have nothing to say and nothing to offer except scare stories and threats. No one is going to believe their “Scotland we love you” guff any more. Not even the Daily Record. Although Scotland does have the highest number of foodbanks per head of population anywhere in the UK, so it’s not like Britain doesn’t give us stuff. Poverty, job losses, low wages, and multiple social deprivation mainly, but hey, it’s a start. And as a bonus we also get Nigel Fucking Farage on the telly all the time.

Brexit has made many in Scotland reconsider their views on independence. For those opposed to Brexit, independence is the only realistic path which remains open for a Scotland that wants closer ties with the rest of Europe. For those in favour of leaving the EU, independence is the only realistic path which remains open for striking a realistic deal that actually works for Scotland, preserves our access to European markets, and won’t sell out the Scottish fishing industry.

On the other hand we’ve got an isolationist UK which doesn’t give a toss about Scotland, and whose government is now telling us that it’s impossible to say whether a Brexit deal will be achievable within the very limited time frame that remains. Those Tory ministers like Liam Fox who are warning us about that must be pure beelin at whoever it was that told us that striking a favourable deal with the EU would be the easiest thing in the world to achieve and must think that those eejits deserve an arse kicking. Brexit won’t deliver anything that its proponents promised, but if there is any justice in this world Brexit will at least deliver the prospect of Liam Fox and David Davis trying to kick their own arses live on national TV, which would be considerably more entertaining than Strictly and might even make some people in Scotland reconsider their attitude about paying the licence fee. But sadly there is no justice in this world, and even less in Conservative Britain, so all we’ll get on the telly is more gurning from Nigel Fucking Farage and blaming it all on the Germans.

As we’re constantly being told, Brexit hasn’t produced a banged on majority for independence in the polls. But it has made many people more favourable to independence than they previously were. It also appears that some people who supported independence in 2014 have now drifted away. So if the indy movement can get those people back on board again, together with those who’ve come over to indy because of Brexit, there’s already a majority for independence. And the thing is, persuading a former yes voter to vote yes again is a considerably easier task than changing the mind of a confirmed no voter. We’re going into another vote with half the population on our side, and a significant number of the rest who are open to persuasion. That’s why we’re going to win. That’s why I am confident about the result of the only poll that matters, the independence vote itself.


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45 comments on “The only poll that matters

  1. Hard to believe that any yessers have drifted away since 2014.Perhaps they lacked staying power.Most of us are Yes till we die !

    • Geordie says:

      Agreed. I’m always extremely suspicious of anyone who claims to have been Yes in 2014 but isn’t now.

      • weegingerdug says:

        Such people do exist, and we need to ensure that they come back to yes. We won’t do that by treating them with suspicion and disdain.

        • Theatani says:

          They drifted from soft yes into the swathes of the soft no. This large subset of the population has fallen for the “There would be a deficit so we’d be f***ed” line of thinking. Mass education is urgently required!Leave it too late and it could be a case of ‘if ur explaining, ur losing’.

    • Muscleguy says:

      Just after the Brexit result when Nicola marched all of us up the referendum hill only to then abandon us Dundee Ric canvassed a working class area of Dundee to take the temperature. My colleague and I chapped one door revealing a chap who happily admitted to voting Leave but having voted Yes (this is the Yes City). He was also utterly ignorant about the benefits thinking we paid the EU a pile of money and got none of it back again but that just explains why he voted Leave.

      I put him on the spot and asked if there was another IndyRef how would he vote, even if it meant staying in the EU. He thought about it then averred he would vote Yes again.

      There are a lot of Yes Leavers but for a large majority of them the Yes to Independence is much much closer and deeper to their hearts than leaving the EU is. To have voted Yes the first time is to know you are Scottish first. I’m a Naturalised Kiwi but I’m a Scottish Kiwi, as a wean in Dunedin in the ’70s I would get up at 2am (with my parents’ permission) and watch the Scottish Cup Final on the telly, regardless of who was playing. I had a kilt and I lived in the most Scottish city in New Zealand.

      I think in the privacy of the polling booth and after an IndyRef2 campaign in the face of the clusterfuck which is Brexit they will vote Yes despite what they might tell a pollster.

      Add in the EU citizens many of whom heard the ‘Vote Yes and Leave the EU’ mantra of BT and internalised it and who will vote Yes in their own interests at least (there are 200k of them and they are not all Catalans) and we are over the line.

      Note EU citizens tend not to be polled by the polling companies as they cannot vote in GE’s so they skew the numbers. Scotland only polls should poll them but habit. I suspect most will be told ‘sorry we can’t use you’. They are our fifth column.

      We only need 250k+1 extra votes to get over the line.

      The Dug is right, it’s in the bag.

      Congratulations on your nuptials BTW Paul. I hope all three of you will be blissfully happy.

  2. Kenzie says:

    Great stuff, Paul

    I can’t wait for JC to get his metaphorical teeth into this one.

  3. Pogo says:

    Spot on Paul the last paragraph is key former yes supporters to be convinced to vote for yes again.

    The constant trashing of Scotland by the yoons has got to help in this. I like to think even if you’re no fan of the EU seeing your own country undermined so much.

  4. Pogo says:

    Will do the job!

  5. Andy Anderson says:

    I agree we can win Paul but we must not be complacent and end up loosing. We all must persaude people now and not wait for the official campaign.

  6. Macart says:

    That was pretty much my reading of the programme and the poll produced. An epic exercise in self delusion. What the UK thinks… for viewers in England only it appears.

    Also? Just waiting on the ‘we love you’ bullshit. I will make a point of raising every ranty headline from the meeja I’ve seen over the past four years. Every Tartan Terrors. Every Most dangerous wummin. Every Thames running red. Every (fill in as appropriate) must go. Every black hole, deficit, too wee, too poor, too stupid column. I’ll rub their damn noses in the stank of their own metrocentric air biscuits.

    Or? I could use one of those squeezy bottles and spritz them when they drop one. A more humane way of house training.

    Just sayin’ like, but their actions post indyref 1 didn’t match their claims of undying luurrrve.

  7. […] Wee Ginger Dug The only poll that matters There’s been a bit of gloating from British nationalists this week over the opinion […]

  8. Mike Jeffress says:

    Just watched Leslie Riddoch’s latest offering on Phantom Power on Norway. How uplifting — the Scottish firm that is providing central heating (literally!) to homes and businesses in Oslo should be an example to us all. The rest of her prog. was tear-to-the-eye stuff — this is what we could be if we were to cut the umbilical to Wastemonster. C’mon Scotland!

    • Jan Cowan says:

      Yes, Leslie’s film did the heart good, Mike.

      I’m pleasantly surprised by the number of people who are happy to say they voted for independence in 2014. It’s as if they were unwilling to let it be known at the time. Anyway, as you say Paul, soon we’ll most certainly achieve our goal.

    • Jim Morris says:

      Umbilical suggests a mother/child relationship. Reality is a short leash and a metal collar à la slave.

  9. Brian Powell says:

    And it’s interesting that despite having all Tories, Labour and LibDems in Holyrood and all LabLibCons in Westminster and all newspapers in Scotland and England, and the Brit Establishment, and BBC and STV, working furiously against independence for Scotland they only manage to get 50% for No. That’s with a built in 23% irrational, unthinking Tory No vote.

    • Robert Harrison says:

      One little Scotland paper is for independence and that is the national we are definitely going to get independence it’s only a matter of time

  10. Derick fae Yell says:

    How to win back those who have drifted away? Easy. A nuanced adjustment from EU EEA, to EFTA EEA.

    It’s the EEA – the single market – that guarantees the Four Freedoms. It’s the EEA that gives our children the freedom to live, work and trade in 31 (shortly 30 countries). It’s the EEA that protects our economy. And the EU is not the fastest way back into the EEA (assuming Brexit happens)

    • Illy says:

      “in 31 (shortly 30 countries)”

      I think you’re wrong there, it’ll still be 31 countries. 31, minus 1 (UK), plus 1 (Scotland) equals 31.

  11. chicmac says:

    So, imagine you were, in UK terms, a despairing socialist or even social democrat.

    Quite understandable after the Bliar/Broon years.

    You were not particularly averse to indy other than the ‘shouldn’t we be internationalist’ mantra beloved of the far left. (Although inter-nationalism without yer actual nations is a concept too far for this tired auld brain).

    So you came to the conclusion ‘better social responsibility in a part of the UK if it is impossible to achieve for the whole Union’. A cut your losses approach. You vote yes in indy1.

    Now over the horizon comes a new Messiah. ‘Ooooh, Je-re-mee Cor-byn’.

    Do you stay or do you go? Some did, some didn’t.

    The fact of the new JC’s well known but well wheeshit closet support for Brexit flies in the face of any meaningful definition of internationalism that I can think of, is not visible to all.

  12. As a general rule, I don’t watch ‘commercial’ TV; it’s the adverts you see.

    I caught up on ‘Brexit What the Nation (?) Thinks’ on Channel 4 Catch Up.

    It was the usual English Exceptionalist nonsense of course, described in his introduction by Krishnan Guru Murthy as the biggest poll of 20,000 over all regions of ‘the country’
    Scotland no more, Wales no more, Northern Ireland no more. We are regions again already,

    ‘The Country’ was represented by English/British MP’s and political hacks, and a West Midlands audience with pre-planned plants in the crowd, who would follow Channel 4’s script, to reach the programme’s desired outcome.

    The Blue and Red Tories, David Gauke and Barry Gardiner, got black vinyl armchairs to sit on, beside each other, while Farage and Caroline Lucas perched awkwardly on stools adjacent to each other, within punching distance, and The University of Strathclyde (now that’s a fecking laugh for a start) Professor ‘Sir’ John Curtice, also on a stool sat beside a wifie of whom I and doubtless the rest of you, had never heard, one Nina Schick, who is apparently an advisor to EU Governments on Brexit.

    I needn’t have watched the ensuing 40-odd minutes of the usual rehashed Brit Nat arguments.

    ‘The British People’ decided to Leave meme got big licks, several times especially from the lips of Barry Gardiner Red Tory Shadow International Trades something or other, who admitted that the UK will be worse off financially, and David Gauke, the Blue Tory Justice Secretary, who trotted out the usual utter nonsense about getting a Good Deal, just as a flock of pigs was silhouetted in the two moons of the dark Birmingham sky overhead.
    There will be two moons in the sky and pigs will fly.

    We were subjected to Channel 4 at its arrogant Guardian reading best.

    Lots of polls showing England has changed its mind.

    No Scots or Welsh or Northern Irish politicians were allowed to appear.

    We are feckin’ colonies, and will get what Mother England decides we are going to get.

    Curtice took centre stage ‘interpreting’ his stats.

    They couldn’t have insulted us more if they played the execution sequence at the end of the Braveheart movie.

    Just to let us know that the English will tell us what their polls means for Scotland, Krishnan hurriedly crammed ina ‘final word’ from Curtice, the Blue Tories favourite pollster:-
    ‘In 20 seconds, does this make any difference to a second Scottish Independence Referendum’?

    ‘It doesn’t.In the survey we find that almost as many Yes voters who say they would be less likely to vote Yes as a result of Brexit as we find No voters moving in the opposite direction. So there’s no obvious evidence that Scotland would vote any differently in an independence Referendum than the way it did back in 2014.’

    So there you have it. Professor newly beknighted Curtice predicts the same 45-55% vote in indyref 2, because the 4 years of treachery and broken promises, and Brexit, will not change the voting patterns Up Here, but 2 years of Brexit misery in England has altered the Remain Leave vote dramatically Down There?.

    Channel 4, the BBC’s pet channel where they don’t even have to pay lip service to Scotland.

    No wonder Curtice wears that annoying smug grin all the time.
    He must be raking it in.

    Farage is a dangerous idiot. You could tell that he had corralled his supporters behind him. They were the only ones wearing poppies.

    That’s me done with ‘commercial’ TV for a long while.

    Paul is absolutely right.
    We shall be Independent soon, that’s why we were barred from representation on this twee wee English show.
    They know that the Union is finished.

  13. chicmac says:

    Jack, in the process of checking out channel tuning on a new telly today I inadvertently caught part of the STV North news. Normally, viewing subject to routine aversion for BP reasons.

    However, despite being aware of Derek MacKay’s response to the Michelin closure threat and the unprecedented support for his valiant efforts even from some from SLABers, all that we were presented with was David Mundell, deep breathing required at this point, will go to the UK Treasury with his begging bowl.

    Very nearly the shortest life of a new telly ever.

    • chicmac, when the history of these times is written then scholars will wonder why we Scots put up with our Fourth Estate Fifth Column, or allowed 1/5th of out land mass to be set aside by the Robber Barons of the 18th century as grouse moor so that the English and Scottish Establishment can kill animals for psychopathic fun.
      Yet we pile our citizens on top of each other in tower blocks.
      The whole elitist system is crumbling.
      The top 10% living of the sweat and premature deaths of the real ‘Many’ in Scotland better get used to it. The Times they are a’ changing…fecking big time.
      Michelin is a French Company. It’s pulling out because of Brexit. The first of many if the idiots at WM and their docile poodles Up Here get their way.

      • chicmac says:

        I think you may be right Jack. Not just in Scotland, I think we may be on the verge of the first World wide anti-elitist revolution. Information is power and for the first time in history, thanks to the internet, information is in the hands of the people.

        • I’m going to watch some Bilko, chicmac. Good clean madcap fun with a morality sting in the tail.
          It sorta cheers me up.

          • diabloandco says:

            I prefer Little House on the Prairie myself.

            As for the fulminating media of Scotland , they’re best kept at bay – I was going to say at arm’s length but since elderly eyesight requires a bit of distance I didn’t.

            I am deriving much pleasure from the rapidly falling circulation figures though I would still like accurate viewing figures for Distorting Scotland and the political output of Mr Brewer.

            • Robert Harrison says:

              Yesterday that man was still showing his britnat colours on politics Scotland because he tryed to spin the michellian tyres in Dundee into an snp bad attack but got no help from Neil findley and the tory guy who’s name i can’t remember then cut it to westminster to go on Brexit then had this woman on where he tryed again to go snp bad but she complimented Derek mackay and brewer didn’t like it is could of swore I saw his face twist as he heard it not been good at all for the britnats.

  14. yesindyref2 says:

    “That turned out to be, to put it politely, misleading”

    Not necessarily, it depends on the baseline for an increase in YES votes. You could justify a 3.1% increase in YES and a 3.1 decrease in NO quite easily, and that about matches a specific poll question (Survation I think). There was a more exact claim, 52% was half rounded up from one given to 2 decimal places.

  15. Day 4,Thursday morning, of my weekly diary plotting the 90 second BBC Breakfast News Where You Are.

    It gets more depressing by the day.

    Scotland is the shittiest Region on the planet, not just the UK.

    It’s a damned good job that England’s ‘broad shoulders’ are propping up this social civic and financial basket case that is Scotland, the ungrateful colony of England.

    Item One, begins with ‘economists’, that would be the Fraser of Allander Institute, a neoliberal neo con Think Tank working out of Strathclyde Uni,( where Professor ‘Sir’John Curtice also has a desk), and chaired by Wendy Alexander’s (remember her?) hubby Brian Ashcroft (according to wiki) is predicting that the Health Service will soon account for half the Scottish Government’s spending.


    The FAI, named after Hugh Fraser Junior, Lord Allander, that well know Socialist, ‘says’ (who writes this copy?) as a result, there needs to be ‘urgent debate’ (Douglas and Wendy Alexander speak) on future priorities,.

    It suggests moves towards Council Tax Reform, and says that there could be ‘major savings’, good old New Labour Old Thatcher Speak, if loans were provided for students to pay as much as £7000 a year for tuition.

    So BBC Pacific Quay opens with a blatant plug for a friend of the lobbyist Neo Lib Tony Blair Throwback Think Tank.

    Tuition Fees?
    Aye right.

    Celtic and Child abuse next.
    Jesus wept!

    When an item begins ‘there are concerns’, you realise that you are once more in the lazy poorly reported world of BBC Propaganda/Scotland shite .

    The ‘Royal’ College of Radiology, a UK organisation, and the ‘British’ Society of Cardiovascular Imagery ‘say’ (lots of ‘saying’ in this wee hurried bulletin) a shortage of scanners and radiologists means that patients are only getting basic exercise tests.

    Where? In Suffolk? Teeside? Chorlton-cum-Hardy? Scotland?

    The news item doesn’t say, but implies that the problem is ‘Scottish’: ‘The Scottish government insists that prevention and detection is a priority’.
    So it’s that Bad SNP’s fault yet again. Scotland continues to be shite.

    Then a rehash of the Michelin Tyre story with the tenuous link that the workforce were returning to work today following the brief suspension of production on Tuesday.

    The final item concerned a review of the Rolls of Honour at the Scottish War Memorial which revealed that nearly 135,000 people from Scotland or with Scottish connections died in the First world War, and that the death toll has long been controversial with .many’ claiming Scotland suffered disproportionately compared with other ‘parts’ of the UK.

    We are described as a ‘part’ of the UK, not a country in our own right.

    And that was it.

    Scotland Shite 4
    Scotland not 1

    Running total for the week to cheer us up over our cornflakes
    Scotland Shite 13 ½
    Scotland Not 3 ½

    What a miserable little country we live in, according to BBC Pacific Quay.

  16. Macart says:

    David Davis reckons there’ll “be some hiccups” if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, but apparently we’re a ‘big country’ and can cope. Huh!

    We’re all aware of the various Brexit scenarios from the impact reports, right? Deal/No deal, there will be – minimum – hundreds of thousands of jobs lost. A massive contraction of GDP, budget cuts and so forth. ‘Hiccups’ apparently.

    Countless lost wage packets for families and the knock-on effects for family incomes, high streets, businesses, etc. is near incalculable. What this will do in terms of life chances, lives, sheer misery over however long, can’t be quantified. But, y’know, mere hiccups.

    Words really do fail.

    • Michelin is closing in Scotland because of cheap exports from China, and of course Brexit.
      Liam Fox no longer asserts that it will be the easiest transition to WTO ever.
      Last week Spreadsheet Phil gave English schools a few hundred for ‘little extras’ like white boards and pencil sharpeners.
      And ‘Dame’ Anne McGuire gets a nice wee earner on Waffle Brewer’s Politics show giving her New Labour Red Tory view of everything from dog poo to doughnuts for a nice little fee.
      England has gone burbling mad.
      And Scotland’s Fourth Estate Fifth Column churns out the same old same old nonsense.

      • Les Bremner says:

        Meanwhile, on Facebook, someone has suggested that the Scottish Government should buy the Michelin plant and rename it Saltyres.

  17. bringiton says:

    When doubting Scots waken up to the fact that Brexit has little to do with immigration or “better” trade deals but everything to do with England’s Tories refusing to accept that European courts can tell them what they can and cannot do,then opinion will shift.
    They should also see what “bringing back control” actually means when May has done everything possible to bypass parliament and now even her own government (apparently refusing to allow her cabinet to see legal advice).
    Dictatorship has arrived in England’s green and pleasant land,or perhaps they have just got rid of the pretence of democracy and reverted to the divine right of Kings (or in this case May).

  18. Cubby says:

    Great post. Congratulations on your wedding. Great pics in the National. Glad everything went well for both of you.

    I watched the C4 programme and had similar thoughts as you posted. I thought it was a pretty poor programme all round and not just because it was so England focussed. Just as Independence supporters jumped to wrong conclusions re voting intentions from the poll I also thought that Sir Curtice also did the same but in the opposite direction. Both were wrong but the difference is that Curtice kids on he is an objective professional. He is just another Britnat who is better at disguising his leanings/bias.

  19. Dan Huil says:

    Brexit is yet to happen.

  20. gus1940 says:

    I would like,to see stats on how often Fucking Farage and Rees-Moog get their mugs and lies on TV compared with say Anna Soubry and Ken Clarke.

    Could Prof.Robertson possibly help?.

  21. northbritain says:

    Listening to BBC Good Morning Scotland earlier this week:-

    BBC: (***Triumphantly – as if Westminster Govt. and Theresa May personally had set the increase***) The Real Living Wage has been increased and those on it should earn £9 per hour. It will affect around 180,000 employees.

    Expert: This is a voluntary code. I’m delighted to say that the Scottish Government has been extremely pro-active in this. All their employees under their control are paid the Real Living Wage and they also ensure that any sub-contractors pay the Real Living Wage by procurement. I only wish Westminster would take a leaf out of the Scottish Government book and do the same.

    BBC: (***AARGH! Change tack… CHANGE tack…***) But CAN WE AFFORD THIS?

    — This exchange was absolutely hilarious and you could hear the panic in the newsreader. Made my morning!

  22. Frank Gillougley says:

    A random view from Blackridge – This is an insidious thing I’ve noticed increasingly over the last few weeks how the dis-United Kingdom of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland has now just morphed into the words, ‘The Country’ from the lips of unionists in the media especially in relation to Brexit. This is a relatively new creeping more and can only hopefully politically rebound against the establishment’s goals of ‘patriotic’ appeal alienating those naysaying scots finding themselves living in the ideological outpost of greater England.
    I find myself invariably shouting at the radio, early in the morning, ‘Whose country? Whose country are you talking about?’ I just find this wilful misuse of language infuriating when the UK is referred to as ‘the country’. I just want to scream, ‘It’s not my fucking country!’ But don’t as that sort of language at 7am in the morning wouldn’t go down too well at all. Not at all, in fact.
    I also find that this time of year is getting increasingly base with the poppies etc.with the British establishment in full swing and all the pure shite that gets posted on FB. I just hate it and all that goes with it. What an absolute con job.
    Oh well then, King Charles of Scotland, aye, right and lastly Lesley Riddoch’s / Phantom’s film was just so shaming I felt. (although it was truly wonderful).
    Oh and Paul, many many congratulations to you and your partner in getting married. I wish you both all the very best for your future.
    Your blog is an invaluable service in keeping me sane.

  23. bringiton says:

    One other aspect of the current Brexit guddle is May’s insistence that she will never accept NI being separated from the UK.
    Here was me thinking that was a matter for the people of Ireland as the British government has said they were commited to.
    So,no border vote as long as she is PM.

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