This is the state we’re still in

This is the state we’re still in. Back in 2014, another age, another era, when the UK could still pretend that it was open and welcoming and respectful of the people who make it up, Scotland was promised that by voting against independence, we could have the best of both worlds. The best of both worlds has turned out to be a choice between irrelevance or perdition.  Even worse, that’s a choice that Scotland won’t get to make themselves.  It’s a choice that will be foisted upon us by a British state which treats Scotland in such a cavalier and high handed manner of disrespect and disdain.

This is the state we’re still in. In the UK poverty is a political choice. The government punishes the poor in its ideological pursuit of a state which grants free rein to the rich and powerful to enrich themselves at everyone else’s expense. This week a UN envoy examining poverty in the UK found that the British government is pursuing poverty as a political strategy. Despite its preening as one of the richest and most developed economies in the world, the UK is blighted by staggering levels of child poverty. 1,500,000 people in the UK subsist on less than £70 a week. In this best of both worlds, people go to bed hungry. Too many don’t go to bed at all because they have no bed to go to.

This is the state we’re still in. The UN envoy, Professor Philip Alston, said that poverty is a major challenge in the UK, but UK ministers are in a state of denial. Child poverty is rising, there’s been a 60% increase in homelessness since 2010 and the only growth industry in large parts of the UK is food banks. Those foodbanks are protected by poppy bedecked nuclear missiles. Doesn’t that make you proud to be British.

This is the state we’re still in. Compassion has been replaced by callousness, the poor are treated with a punitive cruelty, misery is compounded by mean spiritedness. And all this as official government policy. Poverty in the UK is a political choice. British values in the 21st century mean that compassion and care are regarded as a weakness, that empathy is replaced by snorting derision, that understanding is swept away by dismissive disdain. It’s the politics of the howling zoo of the Mail, the Express, and the Scotsman comments sections. And we’re told by those twisting the knife that there is no alternative. There is.

This is the state we’re still in. They told us that fairness and fair play, community and justice were British values. Tell that to the disabled woman who’s been sanctioned by the Job Centre for being late to an interview because she had to walk three miles in the rain because she didn’t have the bus fare. Tell that to the former soldier who lives on the street and begs for handouts in order to self medicate his way out of the nightmares brought on by PTSD. Tell that to the child who goes to school hungry. Tell them that this is the best of both worlds.  They know and we know that it’s not.

This is the state we’re still in, where out of touch Tories with rich and comfortable lives inflict random cruelties and indignities on the poor, the disabled, the marginalised, and the weak, in order to score a few headlines in a press that even crueller and more lacking in compassion than they are. The safety net of social security has been replaced by a twisting screw that spirals into a savage spitefulness. It’s a system that couldn’t be more misogynistic if it had deliberately set out to be misogynistic, punishing women for the crime of having children. It’s a system which castigates single mothers, all with the goal of radically restructuring the British state into the low wage, low tax, low public service economy of the wet dreams of the Conservative party.

This is the state we’re still in. Thousands of families are separated by an uncaring and hard faced immigration system which has as its priority the placation of the right wing gutter press and not the need of British citizens to bring their foreign spouses and children into the UK. The UK government talks of family values while separating families. It’s created a generation of children for whom their experience of one parent is the flickering image on a computer screen. Skyping instead of cuddling.

This is the state we’re still in. The forces of English nationalism run unleashed, tarting themselves up in a tartan bow in order to tell themselves that they’re not nationalist at all. Scotland was told in 2014 that it was only by voting to remain a part of the UK that we could protect ourselves from political extremism and the dangers of narrow nationalism. Extremism is already here, every time you turn on BBC Question Time. The far right is normalised by the media.

Narrow nationalism is the defining characteristic of the British state, seeking to turn its back to the world in pursuit of its vanished empire, nursing its grudges against the Germans and the French for their wilful refusal to recognise that England is special and should have its Brexit cake while eating the fruits of the EU. The best of both worlds is now defined as leaving the EU with a deal that’s worse than what we already have, or the chaos and confusion of no deal at all and a Scotland whose existence isn’t even acknowledged by the British government.  Scotland doesn’t deserve special treatment like Northern Ireland, they tell us, because Scotland respects democracy and doesn’t seek to bomb and maim its citizens in pursuit of constitutional change.  This is the state that we’re still in.

And all the while those of us who try to say that this is wrong, that Scotland can aspire to normalcy, who talk of change through the ballot box, who speak of tolerance and respect, who espouse a civic nationalism, we’re the ones that the parochial nationalists of the British state call dangerous. Because we are. Because we know that there is a better way. Because we know that this is not the state that we have to stay in.

This doesn’t have to be the state that we’re in.  Poverty and inequality don’t have to be a choice. The rich can be made to pay their fair share. Social exclusion need not be an instrument of the state. The people of Scotland can be listened to by a political class that is responsible and responsive to the needs of the people, and which can be voted out of office by that same people. Poverty and exclusion, callousness and cruelty, they don’t have to be instruments of the state.

There is a better way. We can aspire to a land where kindness and compassion, where care and love, where understanding and empathy, where tolerance and respect, are the defining characteristics of our government. That’s the state that we should be in. We can create that state. We can refuse to be defined by the limited horizons of British cruelty. We can be better than this.

Scotland can be smothered, or Scotland can be a beacon. Let’s choose to shine. Let’s choose to light up the horizons. Let’s choose a better way, a compassion way, a kind way. Let’s choose a path that leads to the world, and doesn’t lead us away from it. Let’s choose a Scottish state.

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79 comments on “This is the state we’re still in

  1. izzie says:

    Inspiring as always but you are preaching to the choir. I for one am in despair how do we get this message out there. Not to those who can see what is happening but to those who think all politicans are the same and its nothing to do with them?

    • weegingerdug says:

      Sorry, but this is the only pulpit I have.

      • deelsdugs says:

        And this pulpit is a shining beacon…excellent again Paul, unlike the venom that was spewed out to us by a middle aged couple, in Auchterarder yesterday, who walked past the SNP stall, and its people, peacefully carrying out a wee ‘Brexitometer’ survey, and spat out, ‘and you’re the worst o’ the lot of ’em…’ lot of who, wonders us? They proceeded across the road in a blind fury of stomping and stopped outside the bank (BOS, branch still open!) and continued with their froth to random passers by…
        All we could do was shrug and say, they must read the mail and believe the BBC…

    • Joe Murray says:

      share the dug with friends who voted no. Surely you must know one or two?

    • Izzie an easy way of reaching a wider audience is to share Paul’s work on your Facebook Pages.

    • Jason Smoothpiece says:

      Convert one person to yes, just one person then you have done your bit. We should not concern ourselves with the resources available to the Regime, if we all convert one to yes …job done.

    • Toni Young says:

      For months I had been sharing posts like WGD and Peter A Bell, along with John Roberston’s fact based blogs, with a friend who actually agrees with most of the issues in Paul’s post above. Despite that, she has asked me to stop sharing all posts about independence, as she insists we are better in the UK! Quite how an otherwise sensible and caring person can read all this and STILL not think Scotland should be independent makes me despair.

  2. Martin Edmunds says:


  3. […] Wee Ginger Dug This is the state we’re still in This is the state we’re still in. Back in 2014, another age, another era, when the […]

  4. crabbitgits says:

    Brilliant Dug, absolutely; “this is the only pulpit I have,” aye, sadly and also not much less than the Scottish First Minister is given. She made an outstanding speech yesterday in response to the galoctofuck of this last week and it was completely ignored by our media. I only caught it from someones response on Twitter and that looked like mobile phone footage. What does the Scottish Government/SNP Pres Office get up to? I can’t see it anywhere and I’ve looked thoroughly. This crap from the BBC, “Sturgeon urged to back ‘good’ Brexit deal” is the only coverage at all anywhere on Nicola Sturgeon. Totally unacceptable! I really do despair and it’s only blogs like this one that lift me back up again.

    • crabbitgits

      ” What does the Scottish Government/SNP Pres Office get up to? ”

      Brilliant point.. makes one think there is something Very wrong.

      And another great Post from the Dug.. Cheers.

      • For one thing, we have the UK Civil Service right there in the Scottish Government Cabinet Room, listening to every fcuking word and then reporting it back to their London bosses. They are also, as we have seen with the Alex Salmond allegations, in league with the British media.
        Can’t really call them traitors, because they are carrying out their real job, of looking after the interests of the UK, rather than Scotland. However, no country on earth would allow this infestation of 5th columnists at the heart of their government. Just think of the US government, allowing their government to be run by Mexican Civil Servants. Ridiculous and unthinkable. A foreign countries officials running a government. That’s what we’ve got.

        • I really don’t know why, I am still using the term UK above. It’s the English gov who rules us. It’s England, who wants to demean, scorn, undermine us and made us 2nd class citizens with EVEL. It’s England who controls the Media to ensure the lies keep flowing. It’s England who is dragging us out of the EU and taking away our EU citizenship. It’s England who steals our oil, taxes and gives us as little as possible back. It isn’t Wales or Northern Ireland. They’re in much the same position as us. So no more UK from me, only England.

  5. Andy Anderson says:

    I see a future when as a free and independent country we have put in annual ground rent in order to fund public services in a fair and balanced way. Also Citizens Basic Income to help the lower paid.

    AGR would allow us to fund so much more and stop completely money leaving our shores.

    Obviously we would need to settle down as a country first.

    I read the UN report. Shameful.

    • Brian Watson says:

      Well said Andy , AGR’ s the to go , let’s see them try to tow their land assets to a low tax jurisdiction to avoid paying tax on unearned income or capital gains .

  6. alanm says:

    I’m an avid reader of this blog, a life-long supporter of independence and have never voted tory in all my 60+ years. That said, I’m getting increasingly worried that the independence train is at risk of being derailed as we keep adding more carriages. Fresh from insisting that EU membership is non-negotiable for an independent Scotland, Paul now appears to have jumped on board the benefits gravy train, insisting that this taxpayer-funded service should have priority use of the track in the interests of helping to support “poor” people.

    In my humble opinion every extra carriage you add reduces the number of people who are happy to jump on board the independence train. Let’s keep the arguments clear and simple and worry about EU membership and the level of state benefits after Scotland has achieved independence.

    • mogabee says:

      Unless I’ve picked you up wrong, are you suggesting Paul shouldn’t express his anger at how poor folk are being treated?

      • alanm says:

        Paul is of course free to express his opinion on any subject he likes. My concern is that by tying this particular issue to the case for independence he runs the risk of damaging rather than promoting the cause. If folk want more money paid to benefit claimants they won’t hang around for independence day, they’ll simply vote Labour at the next available opportunity.

        • Ibus says:

          I’m sorry Alanm, but I do not believe anything good will ever come from voting Labour. I know full well from my position near the end of the food chain, that my only hope of realistic security is to campaign for Independence.
          I’m pretty sure that a vast majority of other folk who want more money paid to benefit claimants, also know it’s foolish to expect anything from Labour.

        • Hetty says:

          Labour party voted for £30 cuts to ESA, that’s a ‘benefit’ paid to people with health conditions. Labour abstained on so many votes that could have made a difference like the roll out of so called ‘Universal Credit’, which is leaving people not just poor and with less ‘benefits’, it’s leaving them with absolutely nothing!

          Foodbanks, now do you think people are popping along to those because they fancy an extra box of teabags or packet of pasta? No, they have NOTHING! The British Nationalist govenment and their red Tory pals, ( the Labour party) are criminals for actively plunging people into destitution.

          The Labour party sent BACK £1.5 BILLION to Westminster when in power at Holyrood saying, ‘nothing to spend it on in Scotland’ J.McConnell was then given a seat in the HOL’s he’s paid £300 a day! I don’t think they would be handing those on the ‘benefits gravy train’ a nice big bonus now do you! As if the poor are taking from the rich, or anyone, it’s the other way around for gods sake. Robin Hood? Reality is actually the opposite in the disgusting UK.

          The fact that people are being deliberately made poor, and kept poor is a political matter, it concerns us all, it concerns Scotland, and it concerns independence, you can’t seperate poverty from the need for Scotland to mitigate Tory/labour party cruelty towards the most vulnerable people in society, in our country ie Scotland.

          ‘Benefits gravy train’, are you saying that a person with a terminal illness, or a person with learning disabilities, or any condition which means their lives are extremely adversely affected, should not be looked after by the government who hold the levers of power over this, ie the Britgov. Tax evading, greedy and selfish is what they are.

          The SNP are mitigating so much of Westminster Tory/Labour austerity just to try to keep people from actually starving, to keep them in their homes, to provide just the basics required. It’s a human right to have shelter and food. Your well off people complain about people being homeless, ‘how awful there’s so much of it’ they say. Yet they vote Tory, or even Labour, those responsible for this terrible cruelty.

          I talked to someone who had worked at a DWP ( the UK, Britnat ‘benefits’ system). They said that it was horrendous, staff called people coming in to try to seek help, ‘THE GREAT UNWASHED’! Apparently they sanctioned people more or less for fun, ruined lives and ruined families. Also they apparently had a language they all shared about the people needing basic support, and it was abhorrent.

          I don’t want to live in a country with poverty and destitution as a social construct inflicted by a government that my country did not vote for, which shows nothing but contempt for Scotland, but takes our revenues and resources. They are the ones adding carriages to the ‘gravy train’, it’s they who steal from the poor, and who do their utmost to keep Scotland poor and begging as they did for centuries. No thanks, Scotland should talk about the terrible actions of the Britnat government, in particular in relation to Scotland getting out of this cesspit of a so called union as soon as we can! As Paul says, Scotland can be better than that, it is getting there with the SNP gov, but it will take a lot more than 10 years to repair the damage of British Nationalist rule of the past 300 years .

        • Dear Alanm,

          I dont know if you have indeed “decided not to be a part of this community”, but Id like to point out something.

          This isnt, in my opinion, tying of more things or more carriages to anything, it is more or less direct vidication, from an actual “nexus of authority” – that phrase, its what the BBC is supposed to be, its what the free press is actually supposed to Do in a democratic nation – what we have here is vindication from an independent nexus of authority, in this case the UN, some rather damning evidence that our own free press is quite dead, of the exact core message of independence, which is “when people are willing to lie to your face about deliberately misrepresenting Their Own Policies, because their actual agenda is utterly unconsciounable”, then you have very few places to turn.

          From my perspective, when we are talking about direct murder by the bedroom tax, and complete ownership of the media, Scottish independence represents the “gentle” way out of the situation.

        • Stuart Mcnicoll says:

          Vote Labour, good grief. The party of abstention, and Tory policy facilitators.

    • Aye, right, alanm.
      Really? Really? Really?

      • Robert Harrison says:

        We are really getting to them if they are appearing here but wacth out they might try to turn us against each other by posting as one of us they they already tryed that with me once on the national website because I use my own name of Robert Harrison one of them tryed it under the moniker bobby Harrison I nipped that in the bud quick they are desperate and cornered these days so watch yourselfs on other sites.

  7. Therapymum says:

    Inspirational Paul! Can’t say any more at the moment. Blessings!

  8. Patience is a Virtue says:

    It’s an interesting phrase ‘the best of both worlds’ i.e. invariably used by those who ultimately voted ‘No’ and I think those that used it around the time of the 2014 Referendum at least were genuinely trying to intimate they at least acknowledged there were to them advantages/attractions of Independence (and indicated the thought / that path had at least been considered).
    Presumably the advantage of the ‘other world’ being the security blanket of the UK / all they had ever known and become accustomed to i.e. the status quo……

    I recall a work collegue using that exact phrase on the phone the day after the Independence Referedum when being asked had they got the result they wanted and they replied ‘yes… the best of both worlds’….

    We (and presumably those that in the end voted No) now have particular experience of what that ‘other world’ looks like (the status quo)…but it has transpired, with even more sidelining of Scotland, deliberately so .. with all the false rhetoric of ‘listening to Scotland’ ‘ in ‘ this precious Union’… even Gordon Brown it seems finds that particuar phrase hard to stomach now..

    Something is certainly not right in the sceptered isle and there is little to be envious or desirous of currently in respect of ‘the other world’ …

    but that is easily remedied by anyone who indeed wants ‘the best’ for them and coming generations .. you just need to believe in it, work towards it and vote for it..

    There are in reality few disadvantages of being an Independent Country, imagine a Country where your vote counted, your vote was listened to, indeed your Parliament was listedn to? (and all the other things) .. we live in Hope.

    Independence is a state of mind.

  9. Cubby says:

    They hate us and we are a danger to them because we are normal. Independence is normal.

  10. graemedbruce says:

    Paul I read the entire report and it’s is a damning report. As I said before it it is sickening. And yet there is no mention of the report on the state broadcaster’s website. To the best of my knowledge at the moment the only papers to cover it are The national and i

  11. Marconatrix says:

    “The safety net of social security has been replaced by a twisting screw that spirals into a savage spitefulness.” So well put, that deserves to be quoted and in this day and age tweeted too.

    We all have odd ideas and notions that float about in our subconscious, unexamined and unchallenged for decades. Until we’re shocked out of them. A relatively recent shock for me was to discover that many of the more ‘advanced’ European nations have much better and fairer welfare provision than the UK. I’d always been brought up to believe that Britain really was ‘exceptional’ in this area. (I suppose the comparison must always have been with the USA?)

    I’m not especially well-off and have claimed benefits of one kind or another from time to time. But all the same I’ve (luckily?) never been destitute. But now, with some of the reports and stories going around, I think I should be thanking my lucky stars every time I go to sleep in a warm dry bed with a full belly and the knowledge that I have some modest savings put by ‘just in case’.

    Here’s one thing that really shocked me :

    And as an antidote someone to make Scotland proud :

  12. They disgust me;
    We must stop this.
    I have seldom heard such heart wrenching reports as this LBC phone in.
    Yet next week’s FMQ will be flooded with Red Blue and Yellow nonsense.
    Damn you all.
    Damn you all.

    • Kenzie says:

      I was in tears listening. The Lexicon simply does not exist that could adequately describe the depth of my loathing for this government. And believe me, Labour ( The People’s Party, remember) led by hypocrite in chief Corbyn, run them a very close second.

  13. p young says:

    They have normalised foodbanks and austerity, shockingly a lot of people just shrug and accept this. I am thankful that we have a way out in Scotland but I am fearful for our English neighbours who don’t deserve these clowns in Westminster any more than we do but have no real alternative to save them. It is their voices that are drowned perhaps through apathy and fear delivered by their atrocious media. Roll on independence. PS Mhairi Black for world leader!

  14. I urge anyone who has not, to actually read the words of the report from the UN. It is… exactly what supporters of independence have been saying. It lays out, in graphic detail, exactly the difference between England and the devolved nations. It lays out in graphic detail, the deliberate, step by step dismantling of systems, and of the pure *concept* of responsibility from our civic systems, and from our political machinery.

    I guess in all honesty, England will make a perfectly good neo-liberal camp, be it with Scotland or without it. If that is what the people have been bullied into accepting.

    I dont like being bullied.

  15. Hmm. Can we set up a crowdfund? Maybe with the help of the Common Weal? Or any groups you are in contact with? Maybe with the homeless charities, with whoever, to put this report on the table of every household in the UK?

    How much are we looking at? What is a more sophisticated means of achieving the same?

  16. Indyman says:

    When you walk through a storm
    Hold your head up high
    And don’t be afraid of the dark.
    At he end of the storm
    Is a golden sky
    And the sweet silver song of a lark.
    Walk on through the wind,
    Walk on through the rain,
    Tho’ your dreams be tossed and blown.
    Walk on, walk on
    With hope in your heart
    And you’ll never walk alone,
    You’ll never walk alone.

  17. Referendum1707 says:

    Great article, gets to the point in a clear and succinct way.

    However what seems to concern most on here and elsewhere is that the message isn’t getting out of the pro indy bubble and into the “general public” which is where it needs to get to.

    So what’s to be done? Ok maybe you haven’t got access to a 1,000 activists up and down the country keen and eager to get the message out there but what’s stopping individuals from doing their own wee thing? For everyone who complains about lack of coverage for the indy case why not simply get the article printed yourself and go out and put through letterboxes, hand out in the street etc. Obviously would have a limited effect in terms of boosting support for indy overall but would that be the case if numerous people made the effort to put information like this out there? If numerous people were doing their own thing as regards being activists I think we’d fairly quickly sense a change of opinion regardless of what any polls say or don’t say.

    And if that had been happening since October 2014 we’d probably be at 55% + by now, instead of hanging about doing nothing because we haven’t got a “date” yet.

    There are a variety of ways of putting information into the public’s hands, and it’s time people started using them. After all there certainly won’t be any genuine factual information coming from the “Scottish” media, will there?

    In addition to that have a look at these soundbite cards, they’re cheap and easy to distribute.

  18. It’s Paul Hutcheon’s turn today in the revamped Tory Herald to gnarl at the heels of that Sex Pest Salmond. After all there’s nothing else for an ‘Investigations Reporter’ to get their teeth into, like a UN Report on State Engineered Poverty and Mass Deaths so damning that if Willie Rennie gets on his pins and screams ‘mental Health SNP Bad’on Thursday, someone should squirt the immoral little Brit Nat Toady with a water pistol.
    The Scotsman covers the same ‘Salmond The Pervert’ story as The Hutch.
    They are disgusting little men who doubtless rationalise this vilifying of a man accused of nothing so far as putting food on the table for their family.

    I watched Marr and Brewer. Dominic Raab is frightening.

    He is so boneheadely elitist English Tory it hastens Indyref 2 with every word emanating from his insincere mouth.
    Tom Harris who I heard briefly on the BBC Scotland radio being the expert voice on Scottish rugbyyesterday, sat in Brewer’s ‘commnets panel’ today, a Neo Liberal New Blair Conservative whom we tossed out on his self serving ear on the Day of The Long Knives, and now writes Blue Tory Brexit rubbish for an English Tory Rag, is backing May and the Blue Tory xenophobia and Singapore Britain.

    Nice wee dods of appearance money from my TV Licence Money, eh?

    NS was on Marr and she shone out like a beacon of sense and light, with the greatest hint yet that Indyref2 is imminent, when the World of Wooster comes crashing down about their privileged English Establishment ears.
    Not long now.

    • Indyman says:

      Singapore Britain, sums up their aims nicely.

      • Perhaps there’ll be hundreds of jobs at Waverley and Glasgow central for rickshaw boys to ferry the Elite across Edinburgh and Glasgow between two our lunch meetings and chairing one of the hundreds of charity boards which will spring up in Empire 2 to replace our treasured but not as pressing as Trident II Civic Society.

        There is no way that I shall sit on my hands and let England drag me out of Europe to be held for the rest of my life under England’s (and it is England’s) Homeland Security House Arrest, any notion of rebellion quelled by the Military Governor of Northern Britain’s Army of Occupation.
        How else would they describe post Brexit oppression of the Scots?
        This is not hyperbole.
        Raab on Marr was quite specific.
        ‘Taking back control’ means London and the Iron Heel Oligarchy of Nobility, Landowners and the Rich dropping any pretence that the UK is a democracy.
        Singapore with drizzle: perhaps there will be openings for the Greta Unwashed steam cleaning chewing gum splats from our cities’ pavements?
        They will run amok while the world looks on.
        If we let them.

    • wm says:

      Still keeping my eye on your comments Jack, and agreeing so keep up the good work. Watched NS on the Marr show, are we not lucky having her to represent us. It makes such a differance listening to good honest sensible answers.

      • wm, a Blue Tory PM announces with relish and triumph that there will be no freedom of movement for the citizens of the UK from30th March next year and QT audiences, Andrew Neil, and Marr applaud this as a ‘victory’ against the ‘bullying’ EU?
        They intend to imprison the ‘vassals’ in their Scottish colony behind barbed wire in 4 and 1/2 months time, yet we voted, all 32 LA Districts to Remain within the EU.
        I refuse point blank to be held under house arrest by the Brit Nat Homeland Security and the military occupying foprce suppressing the natives.
        I get the sense that NS is aware that she is about to become a very significant political figure in the UK in the coming months, if not weeks, if not days.
        Of course the Record will attempt to smear her by dragging her into the SexPest Witch Hunt.
        These scribes are like slugs crawling across my patio in the night; they leave a disgusting trail of fouls slime in their wake.
        But by Thursday, there will be the usual barnstorming by CarHire, Dick L, and Rennie the ‘bus driver.
        ‘Way above their pay grade and intellects, all this Brexit stuff.
        It’s comin’ yet for a’ that.

        • wm says:

          You are better at explaining my thoughts than me Jack, thats how I can sit back and let you Sam and Paul get on with it. I will continue to do my talking(shouting) in my community to anybody that will listen to my opinion plus a few adjectives.

      • Yes we are lucky to have her wm. However, I was shouting at the TV for Marr to shut his big yapper, so I could listen to her. He kept interrupting. She would give a good, clear answer and an answer, which unlike May, related to the question. Ok, Ok, Ok, Ok. . . She ignored him and carried on. But he didn’t give a damn about the answer. He wanted her to stumble and stutter and be caught out.
        Then, it was on to another left wing target, Sharma Chakrabarti. He showed then, that he is not only a lying unionist Tory, but also an incompetent, racist, misogynistic and bullying hack.

    • Cubby says:

      Tom Harris – the better together leaver – Red Tory – has found his true audience in writing for the extreme right wing Torygraph. Just another Britnat liar.

  19. Gavin C Barrie says:

    @ Jack Collating: I watched the Marr show today, a wee man with a hugely inflated ego –

    to Nicola Sturgeon, ” have you got the GUTS to call..?.”. And of course, constantly interrupting Nicola.

    And to his second female guest, ” don’t patronise me” says Marr, and received a tight-lipped reply, “and don’t you patronise me, Andrew..” And of course constantly interrupting her.

    And then to his third guest, Mr Raab, a long cosy chat with little interruption.

    Regards the Herald’s ace reporter, Hutcheon. i haven’t bought either the Herald nor the Sunday version for many a year. My reaction to the few times I’ve seen/heard Hutcheon on TV, I’d stay well clear of him.

    Regards the Alex Salmond accusations, the response of ladies that I know as friends, they mostly tut and say a piece of nonsense, and particularly so to complain after so many years.

  20. Jan Cowan says:

    We were out yesterday chatting with folk in the street about Scottish Independence. I was amazed at the numbers saying “I’m with you” and “I’m staunch” etc. All changed since 2014.. Jack, you’re right. Not long now.. Can’t wait!

    • The word is spreading, Jan, no little thanks to you and the Wandering Clans.
      One day we’ll meet and have a wee tipple as the day dawns on Free Scotland.

    • Luigi says:

      What’s the mood compared to previous campaigns? Does anyone who campaigned in 2014, notice a difference on the streets at the moment?

      Is it different, or much the same as last time.

  21. Macart says:

    Paul’s post is on the nail in my opinion. It’s also why I want self determination for Scotland. In 1707 Scotland was sold into a treaty of union. In 2014 it was conned and intimidated into continuing that union.

    Why conned?

    Can any of those who voted thinking ‘indy probably, but not yet’ or ‘vote indy and watch the world collapse’, say that they saw today’s UK in their future? Many who voted yes did and they said so loudly. The love in was a wonder to behold and the appalling outcomes of voting to govern ourselves were coloured the next closest thing to armageddon. As I recall, the electorate were promised the next bestest thing to federalism. Devo to the max. We were promised job security. We were promised our parliament’s permanence would be written into the UK’s unwritten constitution (YES, I KNOW). We were promised that the only way we could secure our future and membership within the EU was to vote no. We were asked to lead with the other nations of the UK. We were to believe that stability and security came with a ‘modified and improved’ status quo.

    Does that look like today’s UK to anyone? Is the UK we see today bearing any resemblance to what was promised whatsoever? How about the Westminster political class and their treatment of Scotland’s representation, our devolved government or our vote as an electorate? How’s that working out for everyone?

    I’d say that since none of the above has been delivered as promised, that would constitute the very definition of mislead, wouldn’t you? Or do you still believe that secure, loving family thing is still coming along any day now?

    The point of independence isn’t simply to avert Brexit (though, y’know… ANY TIME NOW WOULD BE GOOD!). Brexit is merely another example. A.N. Other symptom of what truly ails you. The system of government and the practice of politics that is Westminster is the illness. Legislation and politics that deliberately places major demographics of its own populations in harms way. Legislation that alienates, impoverishes and starves by someone else’s choice.

    The point of voting for self governance is to make better informed, better prioritised, better and closer controlled decisions over the things you deem important to your future. The point of independence is to become a normal country. The point of independence is government by your choice.

    • For any Scot to be happy to wake up on the morning of March 30th 2019, and know that the WHOLE OF Europe is cut off to them because 500 odd English MP’s impose their will on us because of a 300 year old Power Grab Deal by the Robber Barons on both sides beggars belief.
      Mundell, the laughingly titled Secretary of State for Scotland asserts that Scotland ceased to exist in1707, so get over it.
      This is High Treason from a Fifth Columnist.
      Clunking Fist Brown call Scotland North Britain.
      Shame on them and their herd of Scotland deniers.
      No more Mr and Mrs Nice Guy.
      No one will prevent me from venturing into Europe next April. No one.
      I urge millions of true Scots born or settled here to vote Yes next time: for your children and their children.

  22. Eck fae E.K. says:

    In response to Izzie, what I do is, print out what the Dug says, and leave it on the train. If one person reads it and gets a different perspective on things, Good. Hopefully they vote YES when the chance comes along. Hope I’m not in breach of copyright!

  23. Macart says:

    Oh the irony. (No laughing at the back)


    • Nothing is agreed until everything has been agreed.
      The May Kick The Can into 2021 Blind Deal will not pass through WM.
      Spain demand Gibraltar back.
      Another brick in the wall pops out.
      I refuse to accept any of May’s Fudge.
      I sincerely hope that the Scottish Government does too, and soon.
      I will not be barred from travelling working or settling in Europe because Murdo Fraser says so.
      It’s as daft as that.
      Willie the ‘bus driver thinks that he can take away my European citizenship because England’s his country, not Scotland.
      Any bets on May not lasting the wee?
      The EU 27 know that the deal May punts will not get through WM.
      They must be laughing their heads off at the English Eupocalypse.

      • Les Bremner says:

        Jack, your typos are droll. Are you talking about May talking p**s with ‘Any bets on May not lasting the wee?’

        • A Freudian slip .. or maybe not, Les.
          Came across this Jingo buster laid on by the Beeb in this Battle of Britain 2 week.

          This is the stirring voiceover at the start of the 1954 Rule By Jingo Britannia war yarn:- “The Battle of The River Plate”.

          “This is the story of sea power. In November 1939 the war was two months old.
          Blitzkreig on Poland had given the world a new word, and the generals a new idea for battle.
          At sea the problems were still the same.
          In war Germany could feed itself. England could not. If the ships bringing England’s food could be sunk or immobilised England would starve and the war would be won. For this the Germans had three powerful weapons: the magnetic mine, the U Boat, and the surface raider.”
          “Who do you think you’re kidding, Mr Hitler, if you think Old England’s done”.
          Michael Powell wrote the script, produced by the Rank Organisation, as a ‘British Film’, and is showing on BBC I player now.
          England is Britain, England won the war.
          Time to untangle Scotland from Empire One

    • B..b…but BBC have been trumpeting all day that Brussels has agreed May’s Blind Brexit Deal.
      Surely they are not trying to fool ‘the Biddish peeple’?
      Surely Johnnie Beattie cannot be wrong?

      • Macart says:

        This response from various countries was nailed on certainty for quite some time. The challenges by a number of nations over the UKs bid to become a standalone WTO member, Spain’s questioning over the Gib wording in the deal. That’s the tip of the iceberg. UK gov have irked more than a few nations over the years. Some will clearly see Brexit and pending isolation as an opportunity. I’d reckon there’s a few more such headlines to come. (shrugs)

  24. diabloandco says:

    Paul , a wonderful piece which should shame those in authority and those in the media – but it won’t . They’ll carry on regardless pretending that they are magnanimous in all they do and quite deserving of our appreciation , forelock tugging.
    Meanwhile they will continue to pick pocket the poor , the disabled and the voiceless and the media will continue to inform us how wonderfully May is coping after such a difficult week and we should all be delighted we have such a ‘strong and stable’ Prime Minister.
    It’s enough to make you vomit copiously.

  25. chicmac says:

    Scotland is not a state, it is a country, However, because of its membership of the UK Union, we are in a state.

  26. Macart says:

    Another speed bump for Ms May.


    • ‘the Scottish ruling’, Sam.
      At last someone is listening to Scotland.
      Going pretty much as expected.
      Will May last the week?

      • Macart says:

        Hell and a hard place on the May question. The PTB need a can carrier to push through Brexit and none of the remaining names have come forward to actually put a claim to the job. Some might want rid of her, but who steps up to pin a kick me sticker on themselves?

        On the SC decision? Not entirely surprised. They’ll wait for the ECJ ruling and launch against that. They know fine well what happens if they attempt to overrule a decision by the courts of Scotland. As I said, speed bump, but one that really should catch folks’ attention.

  27. Andy Anderson says:

    To me the recent accelerated machinations in politics of the UK are much better than your most tense Nordic Noir police thrillers, nearly as good as driving a McLaren sports car, even better than watching Coronation Street or River City.

    The plot ending can vary but you just know it is going to be naff.

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