The sea change

There’s no podcast today because I got mixed up about dates and thought that last night I was supposed to be doing a Zoom conference with a local SNP group in the Lothians. However that’s not until the end of this month. Oops. Still, at least I haven’t missed it! Anyway, next week, all going well, there should be a very special guest on the podcast who I am sure that you will enjoy hearing from.

I don’t really want to harp on about Margaret Ferrier. What she did was unconscionable and cannot be defended at all. She really should resign. Even if we accept her excuse that it was a mistake, there are no excuses for such grossly stupid behaviour. It is however noticeable that there are plenty of voices from the yes side who are saying today that the Rutherglen and Hamilton West MP should resign. When Dominic Cummings did the same thing the Conservatives were noticeable only by their absence and silence. When Charles Windsor did the same thing the entire British establishment was noticeable only by its absence and silence.

Meanwhile it’s also in the news today that Donald Trump has tested positive for coronavirus. He refuses to wear a mask, he has no concern for anyone around him. When events like this occur it’s traditional to say that you don’t wish ill on any human being. But Trump pushes the limits of that tolerance past breaking point. Still, it does prove that he is actually a human being after all – and that news comes as a surprise to most of us who thought that he was the incarnation of one of the lesser demons of Mammon.

A couple of days ago there was a very interesting editorial in the Guardian newspaper, which seems to have been the only English based daily which has noticed that the UK Government’s Internal Market Bill represents a direct assault on the devolution settlement for Scotland and Wales. The proposal from the Tories that the UK can merrily trash international law has sucked up all the outrage oxygen south of the border. The link to the piece is here https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/sep/30/the-guardian-view-on-johnson-and-devolution-another-reckless-gamble

Despite being in a newspaper which prides itself on being the voice of liberal opinion in the UK, some of the language used in the editorial could have come straight out of the Daily Mail. Those of us who support Scottish independence are “enemies of the Union”. People who support a Scottish state are “nationalists”, those who support a British state are “unionists”. This bill, intones the Guardian, “is too easily portrayed as a Westminster power grab”. Which is a bit like saying that deliberately running down a pedestrian on a zebra crossing is too easily portrayed as a driving offence. It “abets nationalists” it says, as though campaigning for Scottish independence was a morally reprehensible offence and as though the British Government was not itself the embodiment of a far less tolerant and far more xenophobic nationalism.

The piece goes on to say that “nationalists were always going to cry foul”, diminishing and trivialising the concerns of a Scotland that doesn’t get a tiny fraction of the respect that it was so solemnly promised in 2014 by that British establishment which the Guardian is so keen to defend. The pro-indy parties in Scotland were opposed to Brexit. They have every right to cry foul when the British Government uses Brexit as an excuse to unilaterally undermine the devolution settlement without any pretence of seeking the consent of the devolved parliaments.

What was missing was any attempt to make a case for the UK. The Guardian would appear to have no opinion on why Scotland, or Wales or Northern Ireland for that matter, should continue to be dominated and have major decisions made for them by a polity which so obviously has no interest in taking their needs into account and which equally obviously refuses to pay the slightest heed to their concerns. It’s all very well as some apologists for the British state do to say that Scotland should throw away “300 years of shared history” because of Boris Johnson – who is just one man. But the point here is that the UK is a political construct which allows a man like Boris Johnson to gain almost absolute power in a deeply flawed electoral system where he doesn’t even need to gain a majority votes, and then puts very few checks and balances on his exercise of that power.

So far so typical of what we’ve come to expect from a metropolitan commentariat which is determined to tell the people of Scotland what they think that we ought to think rather than trying to understand why we feel the way that we do. Because if they were actually to listen it would mean hearing some uncomfortable truths about the nature of Britishness. It would mean having to confront their own nationalism when they are deep in denial about its existence.

However what is really interesting about the editorial is not the patronising way in which the British liberal establishment deals with the desire for Scottish independence and the sclerotic demise of the British state. That’s all predictable enough. What’s really interesting are the comments left by readers.

Back in 2014 there was a small band of doughty indy supporters who faced up to a barrage of criticism and attacks in the comments section of the Guardian. However now the tone below the line has changed utterly. Most comments are either supportive of Scottish independence, or if they are not outright in favour of it they at least express an understanding and sympathy which is notably absent from the newspaper’s official line. The dominant mood is an acceptance that the UK as a political construct has had its day, and the end is fast approaching.

There are of course a few Better Together hangouts from 2014, tediously trotting out the same too wee too poor, you’ll be nothing without us arguments that prevailed back then in what now seems such a politically distant age. But where these voices were once dominant and set the tone, now they are isolated and friendless lost in the wilderness demanding that everyone listens to how special the UK is while the majority scoff at their lack of self-awareness Which is entirely appropriate because now they have become the perfect metaphor for post Brexit Britain.

There has been a sea change in opinion since 2014. When there becomes a dominant expectation in the UK that we are reaching the end, there will not be as much enthusiasm or support in the rest of the UK for a campaign to oppose Scottish independence. That’s not to say that there will be no Better Together MkII, of course there will, but it does mean that it’s hollowed out from within and lacking popular support in England. The only people who can’t see that it’s doomed are its own dwindling band of supporters.


The purpose of this blog is to  make a positive case for independence, to attack the pretensions of British nationalism, and to formulate arguments which will help to persuade no voters, undecideds, and soft yes voters to support independence.  It’s also to boost the morale of those of us who are already involved in this campaign.  I do not provide this platform to allow people to attack others in the movement with whom they disagree.  Other people might choose to use their platforms to do so, I don’t.

So if you want to share your favourite conspiracy theories about Nicola Sturgeon or anyone else in this movement – you can go elsewhere.  I am past caring whether you think that this means you are being censored.  You have no absolute right to use this blog and you most certainly don’t have the right to abuse my hospitality by insulting me personally. 


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122 comments on “The sea change

  1. Doug says:

    I believe most of the british nationalist media has now accepted indyref2 as a fait accompli. It wouldn’t surprise me if they secretly think the same about Scotland regaining its independence.

  2. Movy says:

    I read that Guardian article too and I couldn’t quite put my finger on why I found it unacceptable. Now I know. It’s the all encompassing UK perfect mantra which seeps in everywhere. But you’re right. There is a noticeable shift BTL in the Guardian. As for Margaret Ferrier – well she has to go.

  3. barpe says:

    Brightened my day up considerably to read this article, thanks Paul.
    Has an inevitable feel about it, now!

  4. Stu hutch says:

    Think you are correct about the sea change and even the majority of CEOs in uk see ref2 and indy as likely.my concern is are we prepared.may I suggest a listen to dot jessiman on barrheadboys blog as she is someone in the snp and on nec committee and gives a good insight to where we are at this time in preparation for indy / ref2.think it would be helpful if you wgd could give your assessment on what was said.this is the first time any of us has had an insight into the workings of the nec from someone on the inside.and the thinking of the snp.we would be doing a disservice to everyone to not share.as a cynic of what’s been happening lately in the snp I am heartened that there are people like dot jessiman in the party and hopefully dot and snp msps like minded will turn the snp ship into calmer waters and achieve what we all want.

  5. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    All you need to know about The Guardian:

    The Guardian’s own supposedly left wing columnists, like Jones and Monbiot ,have been conspicuous in their been silence on and lack of copy regarding the Assange Extradition Hearing at the Old Bailey over the last couple of weeks.

    The Guardian’s name has been cited multiple times in the Old Bailey by lawyers in arguments for extraditing Assange to the US.

    Regular quotes from 2011 book “WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War on Secrecy” written by two Guardian reporters, David Leigh and Luke Harding, are being used by the USs Lawyers.

    The two authors published the complex password that allowed access to an online cache of encrypted Wikileaks documents. According to the reportage by C Murray this was given to Leigh by Assange for safe keeping in case anything happened to him.

    Publishing the password allowed anyone who read the book and picked up on it (it was a chapter title) access to the unredacted files Wiki Files.

    The case for extradition of Assange to the US Assange’s is based on Julian failing to protect names of sources.

    It was The Guardians Leigh and Harding that allowed the names of sources to become public knowledge not Assange.

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Yep, the pretendy lefty Graun, disgraceful. It’s Leigh and Harding who should be in the dock, they put lives at risk, not Assange, who did evrything he could to protect peoples’ identities. Reading Craig’s reporting of the ‘trial’ recently, it hardly bears thinking about what will happen to J. Assange when they extradite him. You wouldn’t put an animal in the high security ‘prison’s in the US, they are living coffins.
      The Guardian was taken over by the fascists some time ago. Humans have gone down a really dark path when they can manipulate the justice system and lock people up in living coffins and when (some) people can think that’s acceptable. The comments are also really good re, Craig’s reports.

      The Graun is another enemy of Scotland, so it’s interesting to read this article thanks Paul, and also about the people commenting on the article in the Graun. Good.

  6. David Brackenbury says:

    The Guardian gave up on being the liberal voice of the left some time ago and has become a Trojan horse of the establishment.

    It softens up a readership, who’d never dream of reading the Daily Mail and its ilk, with vaguely soft left opinion much of the time but when it matters to its masters it let’s rip with invented tales such as large scale anti sematism in the Labour, or vilifies Julian Assange (or neglects to report his trial) – and indeed Scottish Independence. All free and not hidden behind a paywall of course, to get its dictated messages across to those who wouldn’t otherwise see it.

    The establishment are getting very rattled indeed. Whoo-hoo!

    • I am one Guardian reader who is not seeing the paper as you do. I despair of its Anglo-centric approach to Scotland but in general find its coverage to be reasonably left of centre. My only complaint is that the paper is unable to make up its mind on whether to support Labour or Lib-Dems. A pox on both their houses is my view.

  7. Macart says:

    Dear meeja

    Your union isn’t really a union. It’s more an excuse to smash and grab. That’s going to come back and haunt you by the by. People generally don’t appreciate being abused and misrepresented. Just sayin’. 😎

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Get back to CiF! Who let you out?

      • Macart says:

        Tbf Dads I haven’t commented on CiF since 2014. 😀

        Miss a lot of those folks.

        • i remember the day when the indy folk bailed out of cif, myself included. Libby Brooks was btl almost having kittens asking folk to stay

          • weegingerdug says:

            I only ever commented there a couple of times before I started this blog. But I used to look regularly at their stories on Scottish indy and the comments in response. The tone of the BTL comments is very different now.

          • Macart says:

            It left a mark.

            But sooooo worth it. 🙂

          • grizebard says:

            I had some hope for Libby back then, whereas Sevvy was one of the absolute worst of them all. How the paper could use such an outright partisan Labour apparatchik for chief Scotland correspondent I could never understand. I don’t know whether he influenced the attitude of the editorial staff or he was merely a byproduct of it.

            • weegingerdug says:

              I heard somewhere that Severin Carrell was a pupil of Tom Gallagher’s at the University of Bradford.

              Would explain rather a lot.

            • yesindyref2 says:

              Sevvy did some good articles that were open for comment, coming below the line at times to ask a question or something, then he’d do his hatchet job articles closed for comment. KMcK was very different, it was great watching him coming over to the dark side as Labour disappointed him more and more 🙂

        • yesindyref2 says:

          End of 2012 for me – I posted a bit in the Herald, taking time for postings to appear of course and suddenly after an intense weekend about something else – Cameron I think – I became post-moderated – one of only 3 or 4 pro-Indy posters. So I was kidnapped!

          Yes, they were a good crowd. I look in every so often and the ones there are doing a real good job. Mighit have a look in later 🙂

  8. grizebard says:

    Ah, the reference to the BTL frontline of the Graun back in ’14, that brings back memories!

    What is interesting besides the notable change in sentiment BTL is the notable inverse change in editorial attitude of my former paper. Previously it at least tried to present both sides of the argument, even if editorially it was somewhat reluctant, happily peddling that disgraceful last-minute FibDem line on Shetland secession, but now under new management it appears to have become wholly Unionist, in stark contradiction to the sentiment of its own readership.

    Like the Labour Party as a whole, it appears to have lost all contact with its own avowed principles in respect of self-determination. Such is the pull of English Establishment self-regard.

  9. Ken2 says:

    The Guardian is the only news outlet of any freedom of editorial. £Billion in reserves. Pleading poverty. Small readership, especially in the Scotland. The reason why there is so little support? No profit in it. Run by out of touch Oxbridge graduates, looking for a safe haven. Tax evasion. Less liberal more greedy. They like to see their name in print.

    Printing the Snowden revelations. The Editor was threatened with jail by the ConDems. Under the Official Secrets Act. Put the robocops in to smash up the print room. They have toed the line ever since. That is a reason why people get their information from the internet.

    Westminster Press Office controls the Press/media. Uses ‘D’ notices and the Official Secrets Act to suppress the truth. Especially concerning Westminster hypocrites criminal behaviour. Sometime too obvious to hide. It gets released on the internet they can’t control. Why do they bother?

    The truth has been told by Snowden and Assange. They have prevented millions of more deaths and should be commended. Saved millions of lives and injustice. They have more compassion than their accusers. The western powers shambolic shame. Illegal mass murderers. Still at it.

  10. Ken2 says:

    It could be because of trial proceeding the Guardian journalists can’t comment, at this time. Contempt of court. It could apply to others.

    • David Brackenbury says:

      WHAT!!!???

      Sorry about the temporary lack of on-line etiquette there but reporting on trials is what every newspaper has been doing ever since newspapers were invented.

      • Ken2 says:

        The Guardian comments/articles are a part of the trial. The revelations are part of the ‘evidence’. Ie the Guardian are a part of the indictment or whatever. Guardian journalists involved. Could be called as ‘witnesses’? Conflict of interest to comment. Strange going on. State control. ‘D’ notices. Not allowed to report. Kept secret under the Official Secrets Act. 30 years.

        Iraq, Dunblane, Lockerbie kept secret for 100 years.

  11. Welsh Sion says:

    o/t.

    Adam’s red lines:

    https://nation.cymru/news/adam-price-no-coalition-under-any-circumstances-with-conservatives/

    Adam Price: ‘No coalition under any circumstances with Conservatives’

    2nd October 2020

    Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price has said that he would not enter a coalition under any circumstances with the Conservative party, and wouldn’t consider a junior role under a Labour government either.

  12. Gregory R Nunn says:

    We mustn’t overly associate Trump with demons.
    I mean, after all, Churchill was willing to make at least a favourable reference of the Devil in the House of Commons should the Nazis have invaded hell itself.
    Those are Trumps people.

  13. Welsh Sion says:

    Supporting independence ‘stupid’ like smoking pot, Conservative says

    1st October 2020

    Well … I agree. Being part of an independence movement is an experience akin to a high – now as I belong to TWO, am I *completely* out of my head?

    Yours,

  14. You’re back in the saddle,Paul. Excellent.
    I posted the power grab BTL on the Guardian piece.
    You are correct. Most of the comments are sympathetic to the Scots.
    They talk about us as though it is their divine right to decide our fate.

    To remind us all that England is out to destroy Scotland:-

    Agricultural support – Policies and regulations relating to income, market support, agriculture, productivity and maintenance grants.

    Agriculture, fertiliser regulations – Common standards for compositional ingredients, labelling, packaging, sampling and analysis of fertilisers.

    Agriculture, GMO marketing and cultivation – Standards for marketing and cultivation of genetically modified organisms.

    Agriculture, organic farming – Regulations setting out standards for organic production certification.

    Agriculture, zootech – Rules on breeding and trade in pedigree animals and germinal products in the EU and the treatment of imports from third countries.

    Animal health and traceability – EU rules and standards that aim to maintain animal health and allow their movement, including policies covering prevention of disease, control of disease surveillance movement of livestock, pet passports and veterinary medicines.

    Animal welfare – On-farm issues, movement of livestock and slaughter.

    Chemicals regulation (including pesticides) – Classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures; the placing on the market and use of biocidal products; the export and import of hazardous chemicals; the registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemicals and plant protection products.

    Elements of reciprocal healthcare

    Environmental quality, chemicals – Regulation of the manufacture, authorisation and sale and use of chemical products .

    Environmental quality, ozone depleting, substances and F-gases – The UK has international obligations under the Montreal Protocol to phase out the use of ODS, phase down hydrofluorocarbons by 85% by 2036, licence imports and exports and report on usage to the UN.

    Environmental quality, pesticides – Regulations governing the authorisation and use of pesticide products and the maximum residue levels in food, and a framework for action on sustainable use of pesticides.

    Environmental quality, waste packaging and product regulations – Product standards including for packaging (e.g. ROHS in Electrical and Electronic Equipment, Batteries and Vehicles) in order to manage waste.

    Fisheries management and support – Rules relating to the sustainability of fisheries (quotas), access to waters, conservation measures, enforcement and financial support.

    Food and feed safety and hygiene law – Food and feed safety and hygiene; food and feed law enforcement (official controls); food safety labelling; risk analysis; and incident handling.

    I muse on the Guardian: what would the English do if Nicola Sturgeon grabbed the above EVEL powers from England.
    Dross was interviewed yet again blurting out that the UKIM merely ‘levelled out’ standards and regs across the UK.
    They won’t rest until they have levelled our parliament building to the ground.

  15. Ken2 says:

    The legal action by the EU will take 3 years. The Tories will be out of Office before the Bill has any chance of getting trough. Or becoming a Law. Another Tory con job.

    They will bluff it out and then be out of Office. Others will have to sort their mess and shambles. Par for the course In Tory fantasy land. The usual. Wasting £Billions of public monies which could be better spent.

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Ken2 the Tories and their besties the red Tories r in it for the long haul, very long haul. Scotland needs to get the hell out, sooner rather than later, it’s quite simple.

      • Ken2 says:

        Scotland will succeed when people vote for it. The Tories spent years in the wilderness after Thatcher. They are losing support faster than a sieve loses water. Tanking. Johnston will not have long to go. Along with the rest of them. Brexit is being kicked down the road. The can is kicking. Time is ticking. They are bluffing because these policies cannot implement. They lied and lied to try and succeed. Liars always get found out.

        The EU Ref was a total pack of lies which can never be implemented. No matter how they try. The Tories (LibDem) should not have instigated a EU Ref to try and get power to ruin the economy. Now getting found out. They will be out of Office before any of the complete nonsense can come to fruition. Typical behaviour. Others have to always try to clear up their mess.

        There will be legal battles for years from all quarters, Then they will be out of Office. Never have there been such a complete muck up from any group of incompetent imbeciles.

        The Tory Party wasting public monies like there is no tomorrow. Defrauding the public purse to line their own pockets and their associates.The only reason they are in politics. Shown over and over again.

        Leading to social unrest and violence because they are such a political party of total useless incompetents. Especially in Scotland. That is why so few support them.

  16. Ken2 says:

    BTL.

    Below the line – comments (that are made below the article). Posts.

    • weegingerdug says:

      Ken, if you hit the “reply” button below a comment when you’re replying directly to that comment, your reply will appear immediately below theirs and indented so that they’ll know it’s a response to them. I’ve noticed that a couple of times you’ve replied to someone else but your comment has ended up downstream somewhere.

    • Eilidh says:

      Ah that makes sense. Thanks

  17. Ken2 says:

    @ through. The Tories at the trough. Pigs in mud. 1984. They had to get rid of Thatcher for closer ties with Europe. To aid the British economy. Now they are trying to smash and trash it up. Imbeciles.

  18. Ken2 says:

    Pressed the reply button. No affect?

    The wonders of the internet.

  19. Julia Gibb says:

    Be very wary on this! The Right and Left at Westminster are completely aligned in their opposition to Scottish Independence. Both consider it their domain, ownership, realm, etc etc.

    You will encounter full alignment regarding that right to dictate to Scotland.
    The Tories, Labour and LibDems may disagree on how Scotland should function but they all consider it a Westminster issue.

    Better Together 2 will be just as vile and aggressive as the first. We are property that the Masters demand is their right to control.

    The Imperial Masters are Blue,Red and Yellow.

    • grizebard says:

      Yes, but it’s exposed now. There’s no more “pals together”, it’s “we own you”. And hopefully more and more people here will chuck the rose-tinted specs, and come to the only possible conclusion.

      Which is why the BritNat Empire is so afraid of us now. And their characteristic response, the abject failure to present any positive case and instead just amplify the control-freakery, will be their undoing.

      Nemesis awaits.

    • I agree with that Julie Gibb.
      Readers of the Guardien might be sympathetic to Scotland right now because of brexit but they have not always been sympathetic to Scotland’s right to make its own decisions , I don’t think it will take them much to change back , actually time alone might do that .

      Once England truly realises how much smaller it will be when it’s no longer able to call itself Britain or U.K. it will have a late flurry of action to retain power and control over Scotland all that sympathy will disappear

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Indeed well said Julia. Money and power go hand in hand, and the tri colour+ BritNats are not short of a few quid that’s for sure. Scotland might seem a wee insignificant in the scheme of world powers, but who ever said no ta to a few £billions from oil gas or gold eh.

      See this. http://www.energylivenews.com/2020/09/30/climate-change-scotland-becomes-european-co-chair-of-under2-coalition/

      The ‘UK’ ie EngGov have though appointed an all male contingency to lead the whole thing in Glasgow in 2021. Soz Nicola, you don’t count!

    • alisonecosse says:

      But we will have ammunition of all that was promised and not delivered in 2014! What more can they promise ?

  20. Distorting Scotland, Sally anchoring, Glenn Campbell, David Wallace Lockhart, David Porter, Prof Curtice, and Boris Johnson.
    No Indyref for the term of Johnson’s administration, declares the womanising racist, with Porter summarising most of his interview with The Fat Owl.

    John Curtice and Wallace Lockhart peddling the old Non Starter, Scots living elsewhere in the UK should get a say in what country we Jocks at home who actually live here pay taxes and service the economy get.
    Nice nasty wee xenophobic racist rant from a Scot ex-pat living in England but with business interests in Scotland, citing foreign students here getting a vote and he can’t.

    Professor Curtice and Lockhart trying to con us by saying that if the 800,000 who had left this land voted, Yes would still scrape through.

    Hot news. They don’t live here. They can’t vote.

    And oh yes, the test and trace apps are not compatible. Bah rooh.

    And Rangers just might win this Diddy EU cup.

    Sally was almost giggling as she shared banter with the weather lass.
    It’s chucking it down over Sat and Sun.

    There is no bottom left to scrape in the Brit Barrel.

    • What shall we do with them when Scotland is independent

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Well there must be a few overfilled not emptied rubbish bins around as well…what’s that we hear? Scotland you have collective amnesia, no you won’t be ‘allowed’ in the EU, blah blah. I don’t know why does England want to keep subsidising the ungrateful Jocks, it’s akin to self flagellation, but surely now they’d be wanting to cut the cord, it would save them an awful lot of cash eh…especially given their Brexit is around the corner, taking ‘back control’ oh aye.

    • Julia Gibb says:

      It is of course nonsense! However why is it limited to Scots living in England?
      Most of us have family who immigrated to Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada etc.
      If the arguement is that ALL Scots should have a say then what legal and moral arguement do they have for such a restriction?

      Those “Scots” who immigrated to England did so on the exact same as those who went to other countries.
      The people who live in a country should decide it’s future.

      My family members in Australia are no less entitled to vote in a Referendum than the family members in England. However the bottom line is NONE of them should get a vote. It is called democracy.

      …and let us not forget EVEL. Announced on the morning of the Referendum result.

  21. Dr Jim says:

    When you take a look back in history the people in power and their newspapers used all the same arguments against women to deny them the vote that they’re using against Scotland to deny Scotland’s people the same thing, the human right to self determination

    Even Boris Johnson’s own party have had to have conversations about his removal and when to time it right so the plebs won’t notice too much, Johnson has been advised that his *Holy Roman Emperor* approach is the wrong one, oh and by the way he repeated his *it was all settled in 2014* drivel on STV news earlier although I have to say even though he was his usual smirky self when he said it he did not look like Mr Confident

    • Very true Dr Jim.
      I’ve noticed that same attitude a lot when reading the views of people who hate Nicola Sturgeon they often criticise her employing women in important jobs.
      It’s obvious that we need as many women as men in political and governmental positions
      It’s good that she encourages it
      I don’t see what they complain about

      • ArtyHetty says:

        Yep. the COP26 UKOK ‘leaders’, appointed by the EngGov are all male though, so get back to your kitchen sink Nicky love! I think it could get quite interesting in Nov 2021 In Glasgow.

      • Ken2 says:

        It is about equality, women are 50% of the population but only 33% approx representative. A 1/3 representative. Often even less than that in many occupations and sectors.Too numerous to mention. Women being abused etc. It can be a man’s world worldwide and men hold the power. Statistically proven. Unequal.

        The reason why the SNP is so successful is Nicola and Co’s example. SNP policies of equality. They get the women’s vote and help the whole society. Men, women and children. Take in everyone. For a better more equal society. More prosperous and cohesive. Everyone included.

        Any political party who ignores women and their vote is less successful. 50%+ of the population. Worldwide and they live longer (five years)

  22. raymelvillegmxcom says:

    Does Trump really have COVID-19? As Boris supposedly had? Sounds like a rapid recovery will be due and “Gee, it’s just the flu” Call me cynical but….

    • grizebard says:

      Cynical!

      (Part of the zeitgeist, alas.) Even if he dies, someone will be sure to pop up and claim it was faked. Like Elvis. To dodge his creditors or something.

      But cynicism has no place in the cause for independence. Take as a good example Nicola. We should follow that example, believe in ourselves and in our ultimate success. Positivity can also be infectious, and we have a lot of that to offer.

    • Yes I wondered that myself.
      Remember when Boris supposedly had covid they couldn’t get a source at the hospital to confirm he had it.
      Now close to election time we see trump saying he has covid and I listened to a reporter from USA this morning say trump is 74 yrs old but in good health she said he is strong very strong and has the strength of TWO thirty year olds ??

      What does that actually mean ?
      It’s gobbledygook but typical of trump supporters

      Apparently in USA in August two million guns and rifles including some machine guns were sold
      Two million …in a month !

      Civil war is coming in USA

  23. Hamish100 says:

    The NEC Dot Jessiman interview was interesting. Despite baurheid boys take on issue it seems to me that the increased size of the NEC has slowed down its ability to make decisions particularly where certain individuals/ groups dig their heals in over an issue. Regional representatives? My fault I don’t know who mines is.

    • Julia Gibb says:

      We have a smug little group who talk about their “internal majority”.
      Research the NEC backgrounds and vote accordingly.

  24. Hamish100 says:

    Watching on Netflix a programme about Benford law. Basically It can be used to check the fairness of elections, fraud, attacks on the web by bots.
    Did get me wondering if there has been an actual investigation on the postal voting during the 2014 reverendum using this law to detect interference in voting patterns. Nothing online.
    Whose good with numbers?

  25. Dr Jim says:

    SNP conference to take place 28 to 30th November with the FM to make a speech on St Andrews day

  26. Alex Clark says:

    If Trump has been showing symptoms and especially symptoms that were severe enough that his doctors sent him to hospital as a precaution, then there is something not quite right at all.

    They say he is tested every day and yet we all know that there is an incubation period of 5 to 7 days before any symptoms become apparent if you are going to get symptoms at all. Are the tests that bad that they cannot pick up any trace of the virus until you start displaying symptoms?

    So to my mind, he has been infected for close to a week and it was either known and he ignored it or maybe he was doing his tough guy act and refusing to be tested every day while insisting those around him are tested. I’d bet on the latter. You don’t get a daily test that puts you in hospital the very same day you test positive.

    Is someone lying? Wouldn’t really be surprising when it comes to Trump and his administration.

    • grizebard says:

      That kind of deception I can believe. (But it’s kinda incidental to us anyway.)

    • Legerwood says:

      Alex,
      If someone has been infected then they are likely to test positive in the 24 hrs to 48 hours before symptoms appear i.e 5-6 days into the incubation period assuming a 7 day incubation before symptoms appear.. At that point the viral load has increased to the point that the tests can pick up the presence of the virus.

      Prior to that point it is unlikely, but not impossible, that the infected person is shedding virus particles in sufficient quantity to be detected by a test.

      Ideally any test should have better than 95% sensitivity and specificity. Sensitivity greater than 95% means the test will pick up the presence of the virus at low concentrations. Thus fewer false negatives. Specificity greater than 95% means fewer false positives. It is picking up the virus and not reacting with something else entirely. Not all the tests reach those levels and some have been rushed into use that have been nowhere near those levels. Pretty useless in fact.

      The weak point in the testing regime, even if you have a test that meets the criteria for sensitivity and specificity, is the sample taking. If the samples are not taken correctly then however good the test the result will be suspect.

      It seems from reports this morning that more of his staff are testing positive. Looks like the infection event was a week or so ago.

      • grizebard says:

        I would take slight issue with your second para there. The infected person may well indeed not have sufficient viral load to register in a test, but they can nevertheless be shedding virus that can infect others. That is part of the difficulty here. (“Shedding” is generally intended I think to indicate dissemination.)

        • Legerwood says:

          I did say it was ‘not impossible’ that they were shedding virus particles in the early stages of the infection. That is why distance, hygeine and masks are important at ALL times. Hygeine includes surfaces as well as hands.

  27. Alex Clark says:

    There would be no point whatsoever in daily or weekly tests for anyone if it can’t pick up the virus until you are already infectious. Makes a mockery of the idea of testing NHS and care home staff. Sure it would help prevent further infections but much damage would already have been done.

    • Alex Clark says:

      On second thoughts, that opinion I’ve just expressed wasn’t actually thought through by me properly. I need to think a bit more about that, jumped the gun.

    • grizebard says:

      Tests of well-developed asymptomatic sufferers would likely pick up the infections, but not those incubating and already shedding, which is the uniquely problematic situation with CV-19. So expert medical opinion on CNN, for example, looking at the White House situation in particular, are clear that regular universal testing is most definitely not the panacea that some seem to assume.

      Please note that, opposition moaners in Holyrood (including Sarah Boyack and Patrick “testing, testing” Harvie).

    • Testing is good
      The more tests we do the better
      It gives us a clearer picture
      But of course you can have it and not show it in a test in the initial stages
      So testing is not a perfect assessment

      What is more important than testing
      Is social distancing washing hands and wearing masks

      What is crucial is people following the advice , guidelines and rules

  28. grizebard says:

    Since we’re somewhat wandering off-topic and it’s getting late , here’s a little wake-up call re CV-19. (Here, that is.) I do my own analysis of the new series of published figures for hospital patients released since 11.Sep, and in those last three weeks the exponential rise (with very high correlation) conforms to a doubling every 10.6 days. Even more concerning, the fit for the last week alone (with an even higher correlation, which is hard to do because they’re both very close to a perfect 1) provides a doubling every week (7.5 days, to be precise). No sign in these figures so far, thus, for a slowing of the spread. Au contraire. If that latter increased rate continued, we would have 3000 souls in hospital by the beginning of November and more than 100 times that number (yes, you read that right) by Christmas.

    Now, the number of hospital patients is only one indicator among many, and the above situation will not happen, because steps will be taken. If the measures already taken don’t begin to take observable effect soon across the board, much stronger measures will certainly have to be taken. Have no doubt about that. We’re by no means out of this yet.

    Never mind Trump, that’s right here, with us.

  29. I’ve noticed for some wee while now that BTL comments generally aren’t as vitriolic towards Indy. With most of the working population for it it’s only a matter of time, whatever the scoundrels at Westminster try to do. And I’m not overly convinced about their dedication to not letting us go, sometimes it feels more like a tick box exercise. The more Indy seems inevitable, the stronger we become and the weaker they become anyway. 95% of business owners in Scotland aren’t concerned about Indy, they think they’ll cope fine.

    It’s some change from when I was trying to distribute leaflets in the mid eighties and had people laugh at me or just chuck the flyer in the nearest bin!

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Holly, your point is? Presume always, every single time, that your ‘enemy is not weak’ for if you do, you too become ‘weak;. Scotland will ‘cope’ of course it’s 100% without question, that is the crux of the matter, be in no doubt at all. England however, would lose a very lucrative gravy train, a long haul, it’s been their go-to get rich quick, that much is simple. It cannot continue and they know it. Beware.

    • J Galt says:

      You should have tried handing out SNP leaflets in the early 1970s!

      I would say that the sole concern of 95% of business owners in Scotland at the moment is survival beyond the next few months.

    • Julia Gibb says:

      I had them torn up and thrown in my face. I have been chased down the street to “take it back”. I had abuse as soon as I knocked the door. I was a deluded fool (not the exact wording)

      It has changed significantly.
      You are absolutely correct.

    • 95% ?
      I don’t think so you are wrong there

      England’s Westminster have played this political life and death game with countries across the world
      Do not be fooled into thinking that things are going our way
      It’s a long tough journey there’s a long way to go yet and the toughest part is still to come

      Don’t think that the people in England will decide if England cooperate with Scotland’s decision to have a Scottish independence referendum
      It will be their overlords that decide
      Those people in Westminster and the house of lords will decide and it won’t be cooperative or agreeable
      Westminster and the House of Lords don’t do cooperation unless it’s beneficial for England EVER

  30. Dr Jim says:

    If you think about all the things they say about us Scots if we were black they wouldn’t be allowed to say them on the grounds of racism, so it’s OK to use racist language against white Scots, even in the House of Commons where the speaker pretends he didn’t personally hear the remarks

    If a Tory MP shouted at a black man or an Asian man go back to Africa or Pakistan where you came there’d be an uproar yet it’s OK to shout at a Scotsman go back to Scotland where you came from, funny how if some daft Scottish person shouts go back to England at an English person it makes the newspapers and TV and they blame it on us nasty Nats as if all Scots really really loved all English people before Scotland wanted to be a country but now we’ve all changed because of our Natness rather than folks just being fed up being insulted and answering back

    That’s it I’ve nailed it, they don’t like folk answering back, so it’s the whole world and everybody else who’s not them that’s at fault, now I understand

    • Absolutely correct
      And because england owns the whole media in Scotland England Wales NI
      There is not much we can do to stop the propaganda war against Scotland
      But we will do what we can
      And we will not give up
      And we will choose our own future
      England will not choose our future

  31. andyfromdunning says:

    Amongst other activities I write letters to newspapers to either contradict a negative indy comment or write about a current mews issue to clarify it.

    I have noticed that more are being included now in the Brit nat media than say nine months ago. So yes there is a change but it varies by newspaper.

  32. Ken2 says:

    The Guardian etc make money/revenues from ads on their website, That is why they print contentious arguments. For click bait. To get more ads and revenues. Taking people for fools. The higher number of comments. The higher (possibly) the revenue stream.

    Still a lower readership for all newspaper print. Readership falling. People can’t be bothered with it. They get their information from the internet. Sharing information.

    Some ‘journalists’ are employed for ‘click bait’ services. To push up revenues by printing lies. Murdoch the biggest, illegal, greedy criminal, murdering liar. His family has disowned him. Watch out for the virus. 97 reprobate. Along with the Non Dom tax evading owners breaking the Law with impunity. Most of them should be in jail.

    Without a free and fair Press there is no democracy. Another Westminster unionist total fail. They are supposed to ensure it. Criminally failing in order to line their own pockets and tax evade. The state of the media industry. Appalling. No regulation at all.

  33. Ken2 says:

    The media industry is inveigled with the advertising industry to make poor decisions and ill gotten gains. Lies and deception. A corrupt profession. Breaking the Law with impunity once again. Causing trouble. Unregulated properly.

  34. Ken2 says:

    One of the reasons these newspaper do not support Independent views is because they are sponsored and gain revenues from unionist supporting industries and organisations.

    They make revenues and monies from unionists companies and Westminster. Ads and advertising. Their shares are traded on the stock exchange.

    In massive debts to the Westminster unionist controlled banks. Going out of business. Peddling right wing views, Biased etc. Other people use the internet to exchange views and information. Often more independently and successful. Blogs etc.become more influential. Then the newspaper/media sector resent it. Condemn the blogs etc.

  35. Julia Gibb says:

    Regardless of your wider political views. Whether you are Far left or Far Right or somewhere between. At some level, it must be very, very difficult to just blank the arguement for another Referendum. Note: A Referendum not support for Independence.
    Take the example of an EU supporting LibDem voter…they must see the conflict!
    A Labour voter who opposes Trident replacement.
    Etc etc

    The majority of voters will eventually see through the rigid NO stance as being anti democratic. When people start to see through the blatant lies the walls start to crumble. They start to ask questions.

    We have no positive case for the Union. It comes down to blind loyalty to an engrained myth cultivated by those with self interest as their core motivation. This approach maintains Royalty, Lords, Sirs etc What thinking person in the 21st. Century would consider that normal….the answer is Unionists.(Blue,Red and Yellow)

    • grizebard says:

      People (ie. most all of us) create an image of society for themselves (mostly by inheritance from parents) that is their familiar norm. Tribal politics is the most extreme manifestation of this phenomenon. For some their norm has always been an independent Scotland, but the majority of us have to come to it by a process of evolution such as you describe in your middle paragraph. For many though, to require them to shatter their familiar world – however unsatisfactory on the face of it – and replace it with something strange and entirely different can be quite a big ask.

      For such people, to challenge their norm head-on by pointing out some unpleasant salient truths is painful, and an angry rejection the most likely response. The anger is a displacement of the (possibly subconscious) recognition of the truth. Their world is more precious to them than a few inconvenient facts. A better adaptation to reality can only be achieved almost by stealth, by non-challenging exposure to the facts in a neutral environment, by conversation with people whom they trust, by example of leadership which has earned their respect. Hence the importance of access to accurate unbiased news, which we currently lack because the people providing it are either themselves locked into a rigid world view that has blinded them, or because they do understand but are paid not to share it.

      In such circumstances, leading by example is one of the most effective ways to win people over, and we have an excellent demonstration of that going on in front of our very eyes five days a week. No wonder the opponents of independence, who indeed have nothing anywhere near equivalent to offer, are getting very worried indeed.

  36. aLurker says:

    further evidence of a sea change in the ‘British’ (English) print media:

    “The twilight of the Union”

    The pandemic has accelerated the fragmentation of the United Kingdom and made a second Scottish independence referendum inevitable.
    By Colin Kidd

    https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/uk/2020/09/twilight-union

    obviously still exhibiting the sadly endemic anglo-centric ignorant Metrosplaining, still there is some appreciation of the errors of the ruling clique of Brexiteers, and the the inevitablity of forces driving forward a more democratic settlment .

    • Julia Gibb says:

      It matters not if the word used is Empire, Colony, Devolution or Federalism or any other disguise. They all mean the same – you must accept the direction of travel…..dictated by the dominant entity!

      Brexit, The Red Wall crumbling, Tory landslide elections, Robinson hero worship, USA fixation, No input into Brext talks, No consultation in the Internal Market Bill etc etc All of these tell you what our future in U.K. will be. The Nation in the Union with the biggest population, and therefore the most MPs will forever dictate our future. FOREVERMORE

      The UN enshrined in their Articles the Right to Self Determination for very good reasons.

      Sir Ed Davey proved my point when he stated. “Westminster will decide! You (Scotland) will have to win a majority there.”

      • Dr Jim says:

        Sir Ed Davey’s a comedy act is he not, his argument is that Scotland, that is outvoted 10 to 1 by England should somehow find a way to outvote England on the issue of whether England decides they should retain ownership of Scotland

        Do these folk in England actually believe that Scotland the inventers of half the modern world are really that stupid, of course they don’t, they just hope that enough Scots are so deferential they’ll just accept that England should be in charge of their lives for eternity because that’s just the way things are

    • On Kidd’s take on the English Empire’s Decline and Fall.

      The deep pockets of Sunak’s furlough scheme…the implication is clear, England is bailing out Scotland?
      We’d be too poor to weather the Covid storm on our own without England borrowing money for us, money we will be paying back to whomever the English borrowed it

      And the aside that there is not a distinct Scottish HS but that it is really a UK institution?
      Utter balderdash of course.

      They are boiling the Jock frog with a constant almost imperceptible drip drip of lies…
      And a poll quoted at 54%, not 55%?
      There are more subtle wee digs in this rather long winded 2nd year Political Scirnce essay, ..but I can’t be arsed.

    • Petra says:

      Thanks for the Colin Kidd link aLurker. Well worth a read.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colin_Kidd

      ………………………………..

      He, Kidd, mentions the David Melding 2009 book (Will Britain Survive Beyond 2020?) in his article. Melding, Welsh Tory MP, focuses on federalism as the answer to the UK ”ills” and in the main writes from a Welsh perspective however it looks as though one Tory, at least, could see the writing on the wall as far back as eleven years ago 😃.

      http://www.amazon.co.uk/Will-Britain-Survive-Beyond-2020/dp/1904773435

  37. Petra says:

    ‘David Melding quits over ‘dangers facing Union’ in Brexit power grab.’

    ..”The publication today of the Internal Market Bill has done nothing to lessen my anxieties about the dangers facing our 313 Union,” he wrote in his resignation letter.”..

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/18709041.david-melding-quits-dangers-facing-union-brexit-power-grab/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Melding

  38. Petra says:

    Lesley Riddoch:- ”Professor @StephanieKelton author of ‘Deficit Myth’ bestseller & Bernie Sanders adviser will now advise the Scottish Currency Group, which wants a Scottish Currency ‘as soon as practicable’ after Independence Day. https://facebook.com/groups/715532695555527/ Well done @RideoutTim.” https://mobile.twitter.com/LesleyRiddoch/status/1311979454353338369

    ……………………………………..

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephanie_Kelton

  39. Petra says:

    And I’m sure that we could add even more names to the list.

    ‘Prince Charles to be asked to fall on his sword?’

    ..”Davidson’s hypocrisy is unsurprising. She didn’t resign over Dominic Cummings or the royal visit to Royal Deeside by the symptomatic Prince Charles and his huge entourage, trailing the virus in their wake….

    Returning to Davidson, did she not say, on the Lorraine TV show, that she was regularly driving to the Borders to see her parents, during the first lock-down?

    Then there was Robert Jenrick, housing secretary, doing the same.

    Oh, and Stephen Kinnock going to his dad’s birthday party.

    And the PM’s dad, flying to Greece and back then wandering round UK shops mask-less!

    No one’s excusing Margaret Ferrier but the media double-standards are all-too-visible here.”

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2020/10/03/prince-charles-to-be-asked-to-fall-on-his-sword/

    …………………………………………..

    ‘Another trade union secretary stirs it up for his members to imagine an NHS ‘crisis.’

    ..”The British Medical Association is the trade union and professional body for doctors in the UK.”..

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2020/10/03/another-trade-union-secretary-stirs-it-up-for-his-members-to-imagine-an-nhs-crisis/

  40. Petra says:

    Aye Brexit was a great idea, don’t you think? 🙄

    ‘The theatricals of ‘deal or no deal’ are a distraction.’

    ..”Deal or no deal, the outlook is unremittingly grim. Meanwhile, all the costs and inconveniences of Brexit, deal or no deal, continue to rack up. Having already lost the European Medicines Agency and the European Banking Authority – inevitably, though Brexiters claimed otherwise (£) – it has now emerged that we are all but certain to lose the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), a key body for climate change research. Month by month, Brexit is already inexorably impoverishing and damaging us, in ways small and large, and which, as in these cases, reach deep into the core strategic strengths and priorities of our country. But as Brendan Donnelly, Director of the Federal Trust, wrote in a hard-hitting blog this week, “the worst is yet to come”, and Simon Nixon in The Times was equally forceful in arguing that “business is about the be thrown under a bus” (£).

    As a Select Committee heard this week from leading figures in the aerospace, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals industries – again, all key sectors – trade will become “a day-to-day struggle”, with huge new costs and paperwork, reduced investment and some products being unavailable. Each witness was asked if any reason could be given to welcome the impending end of the transition period. None of them could give one.

    Separately, a new report (£) shows that leaving the EU platform for electricity trading will cost hundreds of millions of pounds in increased energy bills. The latest figures on the financial services sector suggest that it has moved 7,500 employees and more than £1.2 trillion (yes, that is trillion) of assets to the EU since the Referendum, with accelerating relocations as the end of transition approaches. And Michael Gove officially confirmed the long-touted figure of £1 billion as the cost of regulatory re-registrations in the chemicals industry. It remains unclear whether the new UK regulatory system will even be ready by the end of the year..”..

    https://chrisgreybrexitblog.blogspot.com/2020/10/the-theatricals-of-deal-or-no-deal-are.html

    …………………………………….

    Check out Ann’s latest links on the Indyref2 site.

    https://indyref2.space/forum/topic/links-saturday-3-october-2020/

  41. Julia Gibb says:

    Is it just me?

    Article after article on “The Risk to our Union” / “The threat to our Union”

    All of the people writing about this are part of the club that brought us to this point.

    Comparison –
    tell your partner they are pathetic and that you are keeping them, feeding and clothing them. Then run the household without any consideration of their views.
    Buy useless expensive toys without any consultation. Cancel club memberships without discussion or input.
    THEN
    When they finally break and tell you that they are leaving don’t compound the problem by wailing about them destroying the wonderful union!

  42. Ken2 says:

    Tory Party Conference being held in a phone box. Out of touch of the internet. Crashing and out of touch. The average member male and over seventy. Keeling over. Vote Tory to die younger. Life expectancy falling under Tory rule. Losing all support.

  43. Mark Robertson says:

    Great article Paul ! You’re now doing the work of both WGD and WOS ! You have a heart the size of Scotland !

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