The proof from the puddings

Yesterday on this blog I wrote about the way in which the Conservatives in Westminster systematically sideline and marginalise the devolved administrations. This isn’t just because the Tories hate Thatessempee and – as British nationalist zoomers on social media constantly claim – that Nicola Sturgeon would only use it to further her agenda. The governments of Wales and Northern Ireland receive the same cold shoulder treatment. When it becomes politically commonplace occurence for ministers in devolved governments to complain that it’s only when they read about it in the right wing press that they find out about British government policies which will have a direct effect on devolved government, this can only be because of a deliberate decision by the Westminster Tories.

As yesterday’s blog piece was published, the right wing Brextremist British nationalist website Guido Fawkes published leaked British Government documents relating to planning for the UK’s exit from the EU transitional period. The documents detail the plans that the British Government has to abolish EU laws by statutory instrument, in other words by the exercise of ministerial fiat and not following a debate in that British Parliament the restoration of whose sovereignty we were constantly told was the whole aim of Brexit. The documents also detail how UK Government ministers will take control of state aid throughout the entire UK. They also details some of the possible scenarios which might result following a no-deal Brexit, such as serious disruptions to the supply chain and a “tightening” on the supply of certain food items.

The plans and policies contained within these pages have a direct impact on all the devolved governments, relating as they do to devolved competencies. However the documents, which were prepared in June this year, are clearly marked as not to be shared with the devolved governments. It’s there as plain as day, as plain as the lies that utter from Michael Gove’s mouth, as plain as Boris Johnson’s lack of credibility. The British Government is deliberately setting out to restrict the flow of relevant information to the devolved governments which makes it impossible for those governments to plan accordingly. The Conservatives in Westminster are deliberately and consciously as an act of policy trying to create a political atmosphere which suffocates the devolved governments.

The Conservatives have already admitted that they are willing to break international law. This latest revelation shows beyond any shred of doubt that the British Government not only intends to press ahead with an extreme form of Brexit against Scotland’s will but that it also sought to disguise its plans to do so and to hide them from Scotland.

Food standards are a devolved matter. The Scottish Government not only has the right, it has a legal duty to formulate policies on food standards and to give advice which is appropriate to Scotland’s needs. They need to have the information necessary which allows them to minimise any potential disruptions. But they can’t do that because the British Government took a political decision not to share the relevant information. The Westminster Tories did so because they decided that they didn’t want the Scottish Government to criticise its plans – because that might have damaged the Conservative party. Yet again the Tories are putting their own narrow party interests above the public good. They preach union but practise deception. There are teenage YouTube influencers pumping out tearful apology videos about comments made about a rival’s weight during a post about a make up regime who have a more mature approach to life than the Conservative party.

You can’t get a clearer illustration of the pathetically adolescent approach to politics espoused by the Conservatives than the remarks of the Scotland Secretary Alister Jack this week. Speaking at the Conservatives’ virtual party conference, the Governor General for the Northern Colony spoke about the controversial UK Internal Market bill, the bill that threatens to break international law and which undermines the devolution settlement. The pith helmeted one said that he liked the new bill even more because the SNP hate it and that opposition to the bill from Scotland had only increased his support for it. The UK Government develops policy on the basis of yah boo sux to you. Their priority is to bring about a Brexit which benefits their disaster capitalist friends, not to benefit Scotland, and despite what they constantly claim it’s not to strengthen the UK either.

We no longer need to suspect that the Conservative Government in Westminster is deliberately marginalising Scotland and putting its narrow party interests before what’s good for the people of this country, we have it in writing from the British Government itself. We no longer need to put two and two together and present a narrative that we have constructed from a series of slights and slurs to the devolution process. We have it in black and white in the words of the British Government itself. We have the proof from the puddings.

The leaking of documents which prove conclusively that the British Government has deliberately set out to undermine the Scottish Government and the other devolved administrations was naturally the leading item on the news broadcast from Scotland’s publicly funded national broadcaster. This is the final nail in the coffin for the Conservatives’ respect agenda, and it puts beyond doubt the claims of independence supporters that the British Government is not now and rarely has acted in the best interests of Scotland. BBC Scotland has been shouting from the rooftops about it, because as the Scottish section of a UK national broadcaster they are naturally concerned to act as the voice of Scotland within the UK. BBC Scotland is well aware of the huge significance of this moment and wants to fulfil its duty to the public by ensuring that the people of Scotland know it too.

Yeah… One day it will be possible to write a passage like that without it dripping redolently with sarcasm, but today is not that day. It’s never that day. It’s never going to be that day. This is why it remains vital that as independence campaigners we cannot cease to highlight the damaging and harmful actions of the British state and the Conservative party. We cannot rely on the media in Scotland to do it. We have to do it ourselves, and that’s the only way that we will ever persuade no voters and undecideds that Scotland’s interests will never be met within the UK. The good news is that we are winning, and that’s every reason to keep going.

Please note there won’t be a blog article tomorrow because I have to go to the funeral of an old friend and neighbour who gave me a lot of support when my late husband Andy was in the last stages of his terminal illness.


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.

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160 comments on “The proof from the puddings

  1. Alex Clark says:

    Another reason for withholding vital information from the Scottish government in areas they are responsible for is that they hope that by “springing” it on them with no time to prepare they will be sen to have failed the public in Scotland.

    All of this is planned of course, but for them, it is like most of their decisions a very bad plan. Ordinary people can see this for what it is, deliberately holding back information in order to undermine the Scottish government. Looks to me like it is backfiring.

    We are close to the beginning of the end game for the Union. We couldn’t have done it without their help. Thank you Britnats, you have been invaluable to our cause.

  2. Ex Pat says:

    > The good news is that we are winning, and that’s every reason not to keep going.

    Last sentence. Is ‘not’ an error? Or ‘and that’s the very reason to keep going’ ?

    Tory Liars, Spivs, Shysters and Crooks department – no change there, then !! –

    https://twitter.com/davidschneider/status/1313807328014147584

  3. JoMax says:

    I can also foresee the ScotLab and ScotLibDem MSPs and their wee puckle of MPs saying, “Right, that’s it. Enough is enough. For the time being at least, we’re with the SNP. Let’s do it for Scotland!”

    And tomorrow, pigs will fly.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      From elsewhere: “MSPs voted by 90 to 28 to say that parliament “agrees not to consent” to the UK legislation as it “constrains the competence of the Scottish Parliament and breaches international law”. Only the Conservatives voted against the motion.”

  4. Welsh Sion says:

    Cymru/Wales enters the fray:

    Welsh Government demand ‘urgent meeting’ after UK Government hid Brexit plans

    7th October 2020

    The Welsh Government have called for an “urgent meeting” after a leaked document showed that the UK Government hid their Brexit plans from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

    The document leaked yesterday included an order to withhold key lines from the devolved administrations related to food, a devolved area.

    “This further corrodes trust in the UK government which is already at a low ebb following the publication of the Internal Market Bill, a direct attack on devolution,” the Welsh Government said.

    https://nation.cymru/news/welsh-government-demand-urgent-meeting-after-uk-government-hid-brexit-plans/

  5. Always a sad time ,Paul.
    The RAF bombed Scotland yesterday.
    Nobody asked our permission.
    They are in the process of dismantling Holyrood. By Jan 1st, they will just run all over us, if we don’t stop them.

  6. […] Wee Ginger Dug The proof from the puddings Yesterday on this blog I wrote about the way in which the Conservatives in Westminster […]

  7. gavinochiltree says:

    Scotland (and Wales) is regarded as a colony.
    BBC Scotland “manages” all the news fit for colonies.

  8. Kieron says:

    When we get our independence, what are all the unionist media companies in Scotland going to do with themselves?

    Will they cease to exist and just fold or will they change their tune and back an independent Scotland?

    A crazy few months ahead of us.

  9. Bob Lamont says:

    Restricted access is not so unusual for foreign policy matters, but for the subject matter in this case internal UK and the manner in which the CS have conditioned it implies they breached their own rules over political impartiality, unless of course Scotland, Wales and NI are regarded as foreign powers.
    What is even more puzzling is why it was leaked to Guido Fox who then published it…

    Good synopsis as always Paul, but please rework that ultimate line

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Noted already sorted, delay this end due to power cut 🙄

    • Alex Clark says:

      I very much wondered why the leak of such a document was published on that blog, unless of course they are like so many Brexiters and see Scotland as a burden and will be glad to be shot of us.

      • grizebard says:

        Well, it would be a bitter irony if England decided to dump us before we collectively grew enough of a pair to leave!

  10. Jim says:

    We certainly cannot rely on the media in Scotland putting the news out there.
    ‘Brewdog’ mentioned today that there was a four nation meeting planned but didn’t say what about, bias by omission, but we are winning the fight through social media.
    Petra and many others put out links many many times every day on social media and those facts our now beginning to filter through to the public.
    There are hardly any people under 40 who watch the news now, they get most of their information through social media and there is absolutely nothing westminster can do to stop it. They can’t close down Facebook etc.
    They can pump out as much propaganda as they like on the BBC but a huge chunk of it is falling on deaf ears, plus they are many sites like this one which can debunk the myths.

    The word is getting out there and it’s why we’re winning.

  11. jfngw says:

    Head of BBC Scotland news will be seen walking in the distance with the Red leader exclaiming ‘Lenny, this could be the start of a beautiful friendship’.

    D.Ross will be running behind shouting ‘red card, red card’.

    W.Rennie will claiming he still wants to see the evidence, but that is a bit pointless as he saw the David Steel evidence and dismissed it.

  12. Dr Jim says:

    The media in Scotland are on it full swing as we speak because the worst horror imaginable has happened Nicola Sturgeon has shut the pubs and we know there can be no crime more dastardly than this *Nicola Sturgeon hates alcohol* says one person on the BBC radio Scotland without reply and the thing is I happen to know from first hand experience that’s not the case at all she’s actually quite partial to a wee slurp every now and again, like lots of folk

    The media will have their day with whatever garbage they choose to come up with without mentioning the facts that todays restrictions are way less than in many parts of England and or any other country also without mentioning that she’s found money to compensate the closures as far as she can

    So what’s changed, well pretty much nothing other than the pub thing, she hasn’t even made travelling against the law, she’s just asking folk not to, but that of course gives the opportunity for the opportunists to swing into action like Jack McConnell who declares how horrendously draconian and unnecessary it all is because Scotland isn’t in any mortal danger yet

    Come back and say that in about a month when England is closed with a 9 o’clock curfew Saville Row suit, we’ll look forward to it

    The only law I look forward to is the one that makes the media tell the unbiased truth or they’re fined so heavily it’d be enough to fund the education budget to teach ethics and a plaque placed on their building with the word liars printed on it

    • Alex Clark says:

      Before the end of next week, England will have closed all its pubs in the most infected areas. They will have no other choice as places like Paris and Brussels are finding out. Every single day that Westminster prevaricates will make the situation in England worse until they are forced to backtrack once again and follow Scotland’s lead.

      We need to be in charge of a lot more than just Public Health in Scotland though in order to combat this virus properly, we need full control of our finances too.
      We need Independence.

    • Bob Agassi says:

      STV News did a bit of barrel scraping of their own tonight Dr Jim did you know that nasty Sturgeon’s restrictions are detrimental to ‘sex’ workers and the sex industry, they even wheeled out a disgruntled ‘sex’ worker to bemoan the whole situation. Unbelievable…

      I don’t know how the FM can stand at her briefings day in day out listening to the absolute drivel questions these suckers come out with I can just hear it now..

      FM – (big sigh) Peter McMahon ITV Border…
      Peter – Can the FM advise how she is going to compensate the sex trade workers who are ‘going down’ due to her draconian restrictions?

      • Welsh Sion says:

        Sorry, to lower the tone, but did that reporter really use the expression ‘going down’ with regard to ‘sex workers’?

        Or is that part of a fertile, mucky mind of mine?

        • Bob Agassi says:

          Sorry WS it’s me who is lowering the tone with my mucky mind.
          I just used whining Peter as an example of the sort of stupid questions they usually ask 🙂

          • Welsh Sion says:

            Well … you could also say the FM missed a trick or two here. ‘Sex workers’ do indeed pursue a career which has its ups and downs, they’ve made their bed and should lie on it, and expect to take it lying down.

            Now, grizebard and Bob Agassi – Where’s the darkened room? 😉

      • grizebard says:

        Yes, and we can very easily imagine the political reaction if the FM did decide to act on Peter “Union Shill” McMahon’s advice there…

  13. Petra says:

    Their plans don’t just affect the ‘separatists”’ in Scotland, this will affect ALL Scots, regardless of political persuasion. Anyone, such as BBC journalists, asked DRoss or Ruth Davidson what the h*ll is going on? Naw I didn’t think so 🤬.

    ……………………..

    This ‘BBC Scotland hide how UK Government hid Brexit plans from Scotland.’

    ”On Twitter, Glenn Campbell is concentrating on the latest from Douglas Ross while Sara Smith is still going on about ironing her clothes and Alistair Campbell’s all-too-understandable depression.”..

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2020/10/06/bbc-scotland-hide-how-uk-government-hid-brexit-plans-from-scotland/

    • Dr Jim says:

      Scottish questions this morning showed up their contempt and anger against Scotland as Tory ministers constantly referred to the SNP as the separatist party and the separatists, no attempt whatsoever to hide their behaviour, they just figure if they keep saying the word it normalises the expression

      It’s no wonder the SNP MPs don’t want to be there anymore with some of them running around trying to pick up Holyrood seats because they know Independence is coming

  14. Dr Jim says:

    You have to watch the latest Tory PPB with DRoss, it’s hilarious, whoever let this past must have been the office junior, DRoss admits he has no abilities other than a degree in udder pulling at farming school then goes on to say he wants to make instant decisions like wot u have to do in football, and after Covid is over he can make Scotland really really good

  15. Alex Clark says:

    It will be broadcast on BBC after the news at 18:55, should be good for a laugh.

  16. Old Pete says:

    Wish some other so called Scottish Independence supporting blogs were fighting for Independence and not continuing their constant attacks on the SNP.
    If a blog is attacking the SNP and siding with the likes of Jackie Baillie, Ruth Davidson, Richard Leonard and Willie Rennie then something is surely wrong. One might wonder if the blog really does want Scotland to be independent ?

    • grizebard says:

      I have no idea what underlies its increasingly deviant behaviour – and on our donations to boot – but if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck…

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Some in the SNP congratulated Kezia Dugdale on “winning” in that court case. I think it rankled, and has festered ever since.

        • She didn’t win the the court case
          She just didn’t get fined much

          • weegingerdug says:

            I was a witness. She did win the court case. The judge ruled that she was entitled to say that the remark which was the subject of the case was homophobic – even though he also ruled that it was not in fact homophobic.

            It was a civil case. No one gets fined in civil cases.

        • grizebard says:

          Yes, the SNP does have an unfortunate tendency to shoot itself in the foot at times. In this case I suspect it was some politicians thinking “phew, there but for the grace of God go I”. Despite their differences, they do tend to form a club, and none of them want to end up in court because some random pleb takes umbrage at a poorly-judged remark. And in this case it wasn’t exactly a nobody.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Check the Daily Mail wording then check the blog, no difference

      • Petra says:

        Long gone are the days when we paid through the nose to be told not to believe one word that the MSM said. Now they’re paying to read the said same newspapers😀. Worst still they believe every word that they read now.

        • David Ferguson says:

          All the more baffling and disappointing that the First Minister should currently be grovelling to the same MSM that has insulted, abused, belittled and lied to independence supporters for decades:
          https://archive.is/jgQKJ (non-paywall version)

          • weegingerdug says:

            On what planet is talking about the need for a free, independent, and fearless press in a UK where the govt has few effective checks on its powers “grovelling”? All she’s doing is lending her support to a campaign for a free press.

            Have you not considered the possibility that if the press in the UK really was free, independent, and fearless then perhaps it might not be so overwhelmingly anti-independence as it currently is? Obviously not.

            Stop imagining sticks that you think you can beat up the SNP with. It’s getting tiresome. It has now got to the point where if Nicola Sturgeon offered a child an ice cream certain so-called independence supporters would claim that it was proof that she doesn’t really want independence and she’s in league with satan.

  17. Arthur Thomson says:

    You’ve got to admit that it’s entertaining watching the discomfort of the Brits as Nicola explains everything with clarity, while the clown and his pals mumble incoherently. Puddings is what they are right enough Paul.

    Those Scots who don’t view the world through the bottom of a glass see today and every day that Scotland has an FM who has the integrity and the intellect to lead Scotland to a better place – and they like it, even if it is grudgingly in some miserable cases.

    The craven nature of Brit media in Scotland and the pushing by the puddings of the “separatist” nametag is ultimately inconsequential. I am at the stage now where I am cool about being called a separatist. I want separation, I don’t hide the fact and by now i believe that only the Brits don’t like me for it. It would be an issue for me if the Brits did like me, any characteristic of me, in fact.

    The uncovering of what the Brits didn’t want uncovered (or did they? was the leaking of it to be another one of their world beating British master strokes for the world to laugh at?) is just another thing for some Scot Buts to find and say FFS enough is enough.

    Onward and upward. Oh, and thank you Petra for your hard work, which I have gratefully gained from.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      The thing is this, because the rUK wants to be the cUK – Continuing UK, it commissioned Crawford & Boyle back in 2013 to examine the basically 3 different ways Scotland could become Independent – secession, separation and dissolution.

      For the rUK to be the cUK, Scotland would have to secede from the Union, not for the Union to separate into parts. So Crawford & Boyle duly found according to their clearly laid out remit, that secession was the most likely way – Scotland would be a new state and the UK would continue. The infamous “Annex A”.

      So the incredibly moronic Tories calling us “separatists” means they don’t even believe or understand their own legal advice by Crawford & Boyle in Annex A.

      Hahahahaha!

      • grizebard says:

        In fact, what was rather lost in that whole episode was that the example set which clearly worried Toom Tabard Jackass most was the Czechoslovak Solution, ie. mutually-agreeable (by political leadership alone, in that event) dissolution into its two equal constituent parts.

        (A solution that has just a faint outside chance of happening still, only provided enough people in England put pressure on a weary UKGov to provide it with enough cover to just “call it quits”.)

        • yesindyref2 says:

          The velvet divorce, indeed. But with a mix of secession as well as the separation, so that the rUK can still call itself the UK, something we don’t care about.

          That needs co-operation from Scotland, and in a negotiation, the rUK would have to pay a reasonable price for that – as well as getting to keep the shared currency for themselves.

        • JoMax says:

          Would that solution not require massive dollops of goodwill on both sides? Can you imagine the other side undertaking any negotiations in an atmosphere of goodwill, while conducting themselves appropriately and proceeding with honesty, integrity and fairness? The British Establishment?

          Cynic? Me?

          • grizebard says:

            There are two aspects to this, The Decision and the ensuing Agreement. The former will happen, whatever the UKGov might wish, if enough people in Scotland want it. A new settled will. The numbers who accept/favour the schism in England might assist, make it attractive even if the numbers of Tory supporters in favour become significant. In any event, the UKGov can’t maintain outright visible occupation, at least for very long. Any attempt to try will simply escalate the matter. I do wish the pessimists would appreciate the real force of mass public opinion. (Think GDR, for example.)

            The Agreement is something else. There I think we can expect the full display of the attributes you mention, as the UKGov tries to extract every last drop of advantage on its way out. That will require real resolution (and cross-party unity, if the laggards finally accept reality) from us.

    • Petra says:

      Thanks Arthur, but I’d like to say that I’m just one of thousands of people fighting to get Scotland out of this hellhole and it wouldn’t be possible at all without Paul. This site in fact has become TOTALLY invaluable for us …. *genuine* independence supporters.

  18. Petra says:

    That’s you telt 😀.

    ‘WATCH: Kate Forbes is having absolutely none of this Tory’s ‘mansplaining.’

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/18776540.watch-kate-forbes-absolutely-none-torys-mansplaining/

    • Dr Jim says:

      I really like that young lady, fearless Kate

      • Molly's Mum says:

        We had the absolute joy of hearing her at a meeting on Skye in 2016 – the sheer good fortune of right time, right place. She was outstanding then and has only got better. Members of the local SNP branch said she appealed to every kind of voter, even elderly set in their ways crofters were seen to melt after a few moments in her company. She is an absolute asset to the party & the Scottish Government

        • Petra says:

          She comes across as having the potential to be a future leader, Molly’s Mum 😀.

          Such a talented party overall and a force to be reckoned with, especially when our MP’s return home. Every last one of them, in fact, show up the Scottish BritNat politicians as being nothing more than a bunch of totally lazy, parasitical ignoramuses.

          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kate_Forbes

  19. Dr Jim says:

    Yahoo! and Yaay! Channel four tells it like it is, can you believe it, channel four reports on Nicola Sturgeon’s new restrictions by saying “Nicola Sturgeon has pre empted everything on Covid before England, will Boris Johnson follow her lead again”

    Ooh I bet that had to smart….ouch!

  20. Petra says:

    Paul I’ve just been reading through your article again and see that you’ve mentioned attending the funeral tomorrow of an old friend and neighbour. Sorry to hear that you’ve lost such a good friend. My condolences to you and all loved ones.

    • weegingerdug says:

      Thanks. Marie was a lovely woman. She lived upstairs from me when I lived in Riddrie. She and her family were immensely supportive when I was at my wits end as a full time carer looking after Andy when he had dementia. I really couldn’t have got through it without them. Marie was a special person.

  21. Dr Jim says:

    As we speak the North of England follows Nicola Sturgeon’s lead and closes pubs, that was rapid

  22. Julia Gibb says:

    I can understand the Tories. I don’t like it but I know they do it by instinct.
    I can understand the LibDems because they are just Tories pretending they are not
    …but Labour! I cannot grasp why they prefer to buddy up to Tories while they try to crush Devolution in Scotland and Wales..

    • Welsh Sion says:

      … and leaves the sh*t for poor old Mark to clear up – a fairly decent chap for the most part and rather ‘old fashioned’ Labour, too.

      Maybe that’s why, eh?

    • grizebard says:

      The English Establishment crosses party lines. It’s not even solely that, since Corbyn wasn’t Establishment yet he was also antagonistic. It’s very, very deep, this need they all have to maintain face; our potential departure represents a serious blow to their frail ego. Which is odd, because they largely ignore us while we remain!

      As for the Northern Branch Twig, they are deeply entrapped in a dependency culture. All advancement to their people in the past was by moving down south, one consequence of which being that there is almost no-one left here with anything much in the way of new ideas to offer, and the few who did were promptly cut down by London (The Broonosaur) as soon as they showed any sign of “going native”. (The fate of Wendy and McLeish.)

      Labour is also remains fundamentally top-down at heart, far more than the Tories traditionally used to be. And London is ingrained as the top of their pinnacle. Part of that is the question of funding. When they talk about “UK broad shoulders”, they are essentially projecting their own situation onto Scotland as a whole. They are really thinking though about their own dependence on financial support from the major unions down south, without which they fear they couldn’t survive financially, especially with the increasing drain from diminishing local sources as their policies increasingly paint themselves into a corner.

      A corner from which, I think, they will never escape until they are dragged out by the rest of us.

  23. Dr Jim says:

    Alister jack says “We’re effectively one country and the borders are only geographical not physical and I don’t see why we aren’t all doing the same thing on Covid because there’s no difference between the countries of Wales Scotland and Northern Ireland,” BOOM WAIT STOP you just said we’re all one country Alister son, now you’re saying we’re four, make your mind up boy

    • Petra says:

      Anyone asked Union Jack if the levels of Covid 19 in NEngland are now at the point of being such a real threat to Scotland, could kill many Scots, that it’s time to close the border?

  24. yesindyref2 says:

    OT – defence
    Some Indy supporters like to look at the carriers negatively. and luckily so do many people still in the rest of the UK, so it’s not purely a “separatist” state of mind. I think very differently. From a paper from April this year:

    “Cooperation with Europe is also necessary and it is here that the UK can resume its highly valuable role as a bridge between the continent and the United States. Using the British carriers as the center of a British-led, but European-supported, task force would add a serious pillar of capability to NATO.”

    https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/new-atlanticist/new-british-carriers-can-transform-europes-nato-naval-capabilities/

    “Atlantic Council” is a clue to its centricity perhaps – UK / Europe with the USA. Here’s another old paper, to show that this was already discussed back in 2013, and hasn’t changed.

    Click to access 201309_op_leveraging_uk_carrier_capability.pdf

    Defence and Security was deemed by some to be a weakness in 2014, to the extent according to Ashcroft that 29% of NO voters put it as one of their 3 main reasons for voting NO. Doing some very dodgy maths, that means 10% of the NOes and therefore 5.5% of the population voted NO because of fears that Scotland would not be able to defend ourselves. That 5.5% then was the winning margin for NO.

    And yet we have these carriers, one of which is actually operational now for an emergency and currently out in Joint Warrior as a “sovereign” (British controlled and supported) carrier group, but also with a Dutch naval ship in support. So all the trials and tribulations of blustery negotiations over the EU, make absolutely no difference so far at least, in terms of defence co-operation.

    And the carriers do two things – they make the UK look a good option for the EU ultimately to keep relations with in defence terms once the bluster is over, and vice versa, and they’re a part of defence sharing that doesn’t mean the EU-27 have to become part of the UK and submit to Westminster, putting out their bowl for some more gruel please. It’s defence sharing.

    Used sensibly as an argument for YES, the carriers can be used by Independence supporters to show that with normal defence sharing, Scotland is not weakened in the slightest, and perhaps get rid of that NO voting concern about defence. It means Independence supporters need to turn the points some make about the carriers on their head – no longer are they “white elephants” but provide a defence capability for the EU which we too can utilise in the same way the Netherlands, Denmark, Spain, would.

    It literally (or litorally) can be “It’s the way you tell ’em”, and could make a worthwhile difference for YES.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Sorry, I forgot pdfs imbed, should have knocked off the http.

    • Petra says:

      Good post Yesindyref2. I really appreciate your “defence” knowledge and it’s clear that some Scots were deterred from voting for independence due to the scaremongering about our ability to defend ourselves. So yes we have to bust the myths.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Thanks for that Petra, it’s not easy because so many jump in and even accuse me of being a yoon or a warmonger 🙂

        But it’s meant as a thought piece, and in terms of Defence (in terms of International Relations as well) we don’t have any RUSI equivalent yet, nor do we have any wealth of defence experts talking up our defence and writing papers for the media to chew over. Just the occasional one or two, like Stuart Crawford.

        • Golfnut says:

          Apart from Crawford’s contribution, everything else was ignored, and Crawford’s contribution was dire to say the least. His latest offerings are little better, which blatantly tie us to, and make Scotland little better than part of England’s home defence strategy. Which incidentally will make us part and complicit in any aggressive overseas action they participate in. Which brings us to the primary purpose of a carrier task force, aggressive action.

          • yesindyref2 says:

            Yes, I don’t know where he got the idea from that Scotland would want to lease out large parts to the rUK for the next 10,000 years! Very strange.

            But it was well received on UKDJ for some reason 🙂

            In fairness, I’ve posted on there about shared defence, he just took it to a bit of an extreme. It does get the idea out though, that both Scotland and the rUK will be better being on relatively good relations, even if just in defence terms.

      • Peter Lawrie says:

        So the carriers are intended to support a European defence posture? Forgive me if I picked up a recent news item wrongly, but the UK could only afford to buy 5 F35s with RAF roundels (at 80 million pounds each), so the carrier is currently out on exercises with the 5 plus 10 American-flagged F35s – piloted and maintained by Americans with an American commander to watch over the nominal Royal Navy Captain. The plan after the exercise is to send the ship out to the Pacific to join the American fleet where it can be properly protected as the UK can’t afford the frigates needed to do the job. If I’m wrong in this please tell me.

        • yesindyref2 says:

          The UL has 18 F35s currently, 15 of them at RAF Marham including those 5 on the QE, and another 30 ordered to be delivered by 2023. Intention is 138 in total, who knows whether that will happen?

          So yes, the news item was wrong, and the current carrier group exercising in Joint Warrior has 2 Type 23 frigates (RN), 2 Type 45 Destroyers (RN) and 1 Sub (RN), probably an Astute, and it wouldn’t surprise me if it was 2 of them. Plus 2 support ships, all UK. It also has a US Arleigh-Burke destroyer and a Dutch frigate.

          The RN is compact, but has (barely) enough escorts.

    • You don’t need aircraft carriers for Scotland to be safe
      If any country ever declared war against Scotland all the countries in Europe would not allow it because we are in a strategically important location even USA and Russia would not be happy if some other country had eyes in Scotland and you can be assured that if Russia decided to move in the USA as well as Western European countries would be taking action.

      Balance is what keeps the peace.
      Scotland itself isn’t a danger or threat to anyone

  25. susan says:

    Substandard US foodstuffs on the way, that’s the purpose of the IMB.

  26. Ken2 says:

    Illegal wars costing £Trillions. What Defence spending. Attack spending. Blowing the world to bit. US/UK they are the warmongers. Wasting public money killing innocent people illegally. The Westminster unionists are beyond contempt. Killing people to line their pockets. Absolutely disgrace. Keeping it secret under the Official Secrets Act.

    Ruining people who tell the truth. Trying to destroy them. The Westminster killing machine. A cabal of complete criminals. Johnston is one of them. It is like the Masons a secret society. At the heart of government. Racist, unequal, bigoted, misogynist. Illegally at the heart of government.Black balling people. A restricted club. Keeping their criminality secret under the Official Secrets Act. Always blaming other people.

    Iraq War, Lockerbie, Dunblane kept secret for 100 years,

    Scottish Independence could change that. Stop them in their tracks. It would help the rest of the UK if Scotland was Independent. It would help save the rest of the world from Westminster unionist aggression. Dirty cowards. Attacking people.

    You would think they would have had enough after the Second World War. That imbecile Johnston keeps quoting it as a defence of his corrupt policies. Most of Europe had enough of it. Colossal destruction. The EU was founded after the Second World War to prevent war and starvation in Europe,

    Now the Tory inadequates want out of the EU. Brexit. After blowing the world to bits. Illegal wars, They want Brexit to ruin the economy. To line their pockets and impoverish everyone else.

    Vote SNP/SNP. Vote for Independence.

    Military spend UK £50Billion. Pop 67Million Trident a total waste of money.

    US $720Billion. Pop 320Million (1/3 of world spend. $1917Billion).

    Russia $59Billion Pop 150Million

    China $228Billion Pop 1.3Billion.

    Saudi Arabia. $60Billion Pop 34Million. (A third migrants). One of the highest military in the world pro rata.

    The UK has been illegally selling weapons to the Saudis since the 1960’s. Harold Wilson. Bribery and corruption. Against International Law. Keeping it secret under the Official Secrets Act.

    The UK one of the most unequal places in the world. Westminster unionist chronic mismanagement.

  27. Ken2 says:

    “lack of business experience’. Third rate losers are in the Scottish Gov to try and line their pockets. Ripping off the public purse. Local Councillor. Council contracts total overpayments. Ripping off the public purse. Floor contracts etc. Totally overcharged. Were the monies paid back? Or hidden. Illegally overcharged. The Tory/Dem council tried to cover it up.

    £Billionaires ripping off the public purse. Great business ‘acumen’. Or just thievery. While others go without. Off the school budget.

    Not trusted in the family business. Lack of acumen. Some families own half of Deeside. Cousin of the Queen. Avoiding tax. Inherited wealth. Land exempt from tax to keep farms together and produce more. CAP farming subsidies from the EU. Brexit will ruin the economy and people’s lives. The usual Tory hypocrites. Getting away with it.

    The epidemic spread by Tory supporting, and donating businesses not following the guidelines or the rules. Aided by unionists councillors.

    • Petra says:

      Scary right enough, Jim. That was the virtual meeting that Joanna Cherry was involved with and a good example as to why we need our MP’s to remain at Westminster, imo.

      Lord Neuberger:- “This country has a remarkable unbroken history of 350 years of observing the rule of law, and has an enviable reputation for that: it gives us authority abroad when we criticise other countries for breaking international law,” the top judge, now a crossbench peer, warned.

      ”At home, one of the most important aspects of any democratic society is the right of individuals to go to court, to challenge the government when the government has done something wrong, when the government has breached the rights of individual
      s. Once you deprive individuals, people, of the right to go to court, to challenge the government, you are in a dictatorship, you are in a tyranny.

  28. Dr Jim says:

    Vitamin D will save us all seems to be the latest wheeze on the go at the moment because they say that here in *England* we don’t get enough of that fine and goodly supplement and if we all examine New Zealand where the death rate is much lower then we can see there looks like maybe there’s something in that,,,, except the don’t mention that new Zealand just closed its doors and stopped letting folk in to infect them and how come Australia has lots of deaths and they live next door to New Zealand

    Or Spain or Italy with a large death rate have plenty of sunshine, natures supplier of Vitamin D
    but again they say here in *England* we don’t get enough, yet the past year has seen the hottest and sunniest year in history here in *England* and when everyone was basking in over 30 degrees of heat and blistering sunshine more people caught Covid when they went out to receive large doses of natures cure all Vitamin D

    Not of course to say that Vitamin D is in any way bad or ineffective for anyone but I’m thinking this sounds a bit more like Donald Trump telling us to stick an ultra violet light down our throats and inject ourselves with Domestos story, so if you’re thinking of running out and gorging yourself on Vitamin D to ward off the evil Corona virus with buckets of the stuff then slosh it down with lashings of your favourite disinfectant remember you’re more likely to turn orange and die of that and it might just be simpler to comply with medical advice wear a mask stay out of peoples way and hang on for the medically approved vaccine

    Oh and by the way new evidence now proves conclusively that Covid 19 kills 300% more people than Influenza, so that’s that nonsense knocked on the head at long boring last, thank God

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Vitamin D “won’t save us” but there is scientific consensus Vit-D plays a beneficial role with the immune system in resisting the worst effects of Covid if you DO contract it.

      • grizebard says:

        Apart from the current crisis, a VitD supplement is generally recommended for older people in Scotland year round, and for virtually everyone during the winter months. Or eat lots of salmon and mackerel. Yummm… The effects of chronic slight deficiency (as opposed to the extreme of rickets) are not at all well understood, but it might eg. possibly be associated with the unusual prevalence of MS in Scotland. (The jury is still out on that, though.)

  29. Hamish100 says:

    Today, I watched with increasing bile towards the ermine smirking Davidson questioning the FM.

    I would have thought that Davidson’s old bbc pal McIntosh would have ruled Davidson out of order procedurally as she was undermining the Parliamentary Enquiry into the role of the Government in dealing with the Allegations over the ex FM’s behaviour.

    I now wonder if the FM could now refuse to attend the enquiry in person since she has already been questioned. She won’t of course she is above that.
    Davidson whose concern over victims of violence only stretches so far. Don’t ask for child benefit, is the lowest.
    Incidentally the Tory MP under police investigation , what’s his name again? Conspiracy of silence between Westminster the news media and the tories. Are we surprised?

    • Dr Jim says:

      The Baroness was having a go at the public smear campaign to support those conspirators who are still pursuing this nonsense that even Tory journalists now admit is going nowhere because it has nowhere to go
      The committee have still refused to call the FM to give evidence because her testimony will kill their smear campaign stone dead and they know it leaving the ability to publicly smear her and the SNP dead in the water along with the campaigners who pretend to speak for a man who neither asked them to nor needs their supposed *help*
      This continued line of *we have the proof but can’t say for fear of prosecution by the corrupt authorities* is total David Icke at its most cosmic ridiculousness on George Galloways stilts and they’ll either get what’s coming to them if they continue or they’ll be found out and just fade away

      Let’s hope they have the grace to do the latter and do it quietly to save themselves further ridicule
      They will say they’re working for Scotland, no they’re not, none of them, not by a long chalk

      • Clydebuilt says:

        Well said Dr. Jim!!!

        Today at FMQ’s Ruth Davidson got stuck into The FM, regarding her “memory failure”

        Contrary to what a so called Indy Blog has been pushing for months

        The Tories are NOT trying to cover this up.
        They are NOT trying to protect NS,
        They are NOT trying to keep her in place because she doesn’t want independence.

        The Tories are exposing Sturgeon’s actions.

        The Tories want rid of Sturgeon to damage the SNP for May’s Holyrood election!

        • Dr Jim says:

          The Tories and their little helpers fear Nicola Sturgeon because there are two things she won’t do
          She wont allow Westminster to use the media to control and interfere in Scotland’s referendum
          She won’t compromise on any deal beforehand on the outcome of Scotland’s referendum

          Both these things were allowed to happen in 2014 hence Nicola Sturgeon’s statement *I don’t just want to hold a referendum I want to win one*

          That statement I believe was a promise to Scotland a warning to England and a rebuke to the way the 2014 referendum was allowed to be conducted and controlled by Westminster, some of which has festered in certain quarters and resulted in some of the enmity we have today

      • Petra says:

        The latest (BBC) news on this seems to show Nicola Sturgeon in a good light whereas it’s making the situation for Alex Salmond worse by highlighting that he repeatedly asked her to make a request to the Civil Service to drop the complaints in favour of arbitration. Not exactly what some want to hear.

        • Dr Jim says:

          Well the usual suspects would have it that Nicola Sturgeon was uncomfortable at FMQs today so that proves she’s guilty and they even go so far as to want to pay an expert in body language and behaviour to prove themselves correct

          Well here I am and I’ll do it for free, of course the FM was uncomfortable, that does not equate to lying, there you are totally free expert advice, I’ve been doing it for years

          You ever been uncomfortable if there’s a comedian or a performance you don’t like, I’m uncomfortable when folk scribble meaningless garbage untruths on the internet or throw around accusations without subsantiating evidence even though a guy off the internet tells them it’s defo the truth by the way so it is anaw an he knows coz he does innat

          The FM has a great phrase for those folk, she calls them serial misleaders, which is so much more refined than I would name them

  30. Ken2 says:

    The nasty Tories are just showing themselves up again. Losing support like never before. They are just hypocrites. Every time they open their mouths they lose support. Everyone sees pass their appalling behaviour.

    Things are not working out how they expected. The gutter snipes. People in glass houses show not throw stone, The Tories tanking like there is no tomorrow. Deja Vu.

  31. Dr Jim says:

    So called new list parties for Independence can achieve nothing but removing votes from the SNP and Greens, full story in the National

  32. Dr Jim says:

    Allegra Stratton or to give her her full moniker Allegra Elizabeth Jane Stratton has just been announced as the new Tory press secretary
    Allegra Elizabeth’s rise and the history of it is quite extensive but most readers eyebrows will be raised at a post she held for quite some time which was as political editor for BBCs Newsnight programme

    I just thought I’d let you all know who and how press information will now be handled by Number 10 Downing St

    • Bob Lamont says:

      From Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegra_Stratton
      Allegra Elizabeth Jane Stratton[1] (born 25 November 1980) is a British journalist and writer. From January 2016 to April 2020, she was the national editor of ITV News after four years as political editor on BBC Two’s Newsnight.[2] She also co-presented Peston on Sunday with Robert Peston from 2016 to 2018.
      In April 2020, she quit ITV News to become Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Director of Strategic Communications at the Treasury.[3]
      On Thursday 8th October it was announced she was to become the new Press Secretary for 10 Downing Street.[4]
      Further down you read where the network connection is, “Allegra Stratton is married to James Forsyth, political editor of The Spectator magazine”

      Fair warning to us of a “verminous” persuasion…

    • Petra says:

      The old ”revolving door’ strategy?

  33. Dr Jim says:

    I don’t know how many folk know this but ASDA has been purchased for £6.5 Billion by two Asian brothers from Blackburn in Lancashire England, so if the Tory threats of businesses moving out of Scotland post Independence is used next referendum they’ll be on to plums with that rubbish

    Who ever heard of Asian businessmen doing what Tories tell them over profits for their own businesses

    • Ken2 says:

      Asda was providing free food (quite tasty) for SNP conference etc around the time of the IndyRef and denied being opposed to IndyRef. Getting publicity for the products.

      Marks & Spencer did the same and denied being against IndyRef, ‘a decision for the people to decide’. Many managements claimed they were keeping out of it. Neutral. To keep businesses thriving and supported, (50/50). Conflicting claims in the ‘Press’. Making it up. On individual opinions.

      If Scotland was Independent and better off, so would the rest of Britain. More prosperity, cohesion and equality.

  34. Capella says:

    UK GOVERNMENT HID BREXIT PLANS FROM DEVOLVED ADMINISTRATIONS, says Guido Fawkes screaming headline. Isn’t time we started calling it the English government? Because that is what it really is.

    • I agree.
      It’s always been the English government but over two world wars England needed Scotland Wales and Ireland to be on their side.
      Since WWII it’s been a down slide of ever decreasing respect shown by England to Scotland Wales and Ireland to the point we have reached now where everyone can see there is absolutely no value in a United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland .
      Ireland should be reunified and Scotland and Wales independent running their own affairs.

  35. Dr Jim says:

    Read this in a whiny rotten wee voice:

    Lord Jack McConnell of Saville Row clothing says the Holyrood parliament isn’t working anymore and has lost its way and must work together with the UK parliament to do better

    • grizebard says:

      People in unrepresentative defunct enclaves housed in rotten decaying buildings should stow their thrones.

      I think Ermine Jack deserves the exact same dusty response about being accountable to the people of Scotland as Baroness Boughtup of Soor Prune.

  36. Petra says:

    Something else that we don’t hear too much about. Thousands of postmasters and mistresses lives ruined by a faulty computer system. People’s reputations, health and lives decimated, thrown into prison, having to repay money that they never stole at all, having to sell their homes to do so, families breaking up and with some individuals ultimately committing suicide. They’ve won their case now but one question remains unanswered … where’s the ”missing” money?

    ‘Post Office apologises to former postmasters for unfair convictions linked to accounting scandal.’

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/post-office-apology-postmasters-horizon-accounting-scandal-b747231.html

    …………………..

    ‘Bankruptcy, jail, ruined lives: inside the Post Office scandal.’

    ..”Many sub-postmasters told Second Sight that Horizon transactions appeared to have been entered, or cash or stock balances changed, when the branch was closed and no one had access to the terminals. Several said they believed that their terminals had been accessed remotely or that entries were amended without their knowledge or approval.”..

    ..”The Post Office effectively exploited those systemic weaknesses over 20 years.”..

    http://www.ft.com/content/0138cd7d-9673-436b-86a1-33704b29eb60

    • Petra says:

      And surprise, surprise the main culprit in it all, (prior) Chief Executive of the Post Office Paula Vennells an ordained priest, jiggered off, got awarded a CBE in January 2019 (for services to the Post Office and to charity), joined the Cabinet Office as an advisor in February 2019 and then landed the role of Chairman of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust in London. She also receives £140,000 a year advising supermarket chain Morrisons and Dunelm….. and the rest!

      She made the decision to pursue the postmasters in court costing the taxpayers an estimated £90million even although she knew that money could appear to be missing from branch accounts because of errors in the Horizon computer system. She is also said to have treated individual postmasters with utter contempt and derision.

      But there you go rewarded for being another cruel, callous abject ”Establishment” failure.

      http://www.cwu.org/news/shamed-post-office-boss-should-lose-cbe/

  37. jfngw says:

    When is this has been going to disappear into the shadows, alone with his 40 proof colleague.

    Where has all the money gone, long time passing
    Where has all the money gone, long time ago
    Where has all the money gone?
    Back to Westminster everyone
    Oh, I got an ermine robe
    Oh, I got an ermine robe

    • jfngw says:

      Unelected socialite Lord McConnell is also calling for a ‘democracy summit’ for Scotland. You can’t make this stuff up can you, Labour want their fiefdom back, even it the electorate don’t want them.

      • grizebard says:

        Reminds me yet again of Berthold Brecht’s jibe about the (late unlamended) regime of the GDR, on suffering an electoral setback, needing to elect a new electorate…

      • Petra says:

        Am I going doolally or what? LORD Jack McConnell, LABOUR Party, of the UNDEMOCRATIC House of Lords is calling for a ”democracy summit.” That’s the House of Lords that’s wholly unaccountable to all UK’s citizens.

        ‘Former first minister calls for democracy summit to improve accountability.’

        ..”He suggested the legislation put in place to tackle the coronavirus pandemic did not allow for proper scrutiny of ministers’ decisions – and listed this as one of several concerns about transparency, alongside dealings with parliamentary inquiries and freedom of information requests.”..

        http://www.holyrood.com/news/view,former-first-minister-calls-for-democracy-summit-to-improve-accountability

        • ArtyHetty says:

          Wow, yes I think we must all be living in an alternate universe. McConnell, major ar*e licker of his BritNat masters in London is harping on about democracy. Jeezo. He sent £1.5BILLION back to Westminster when he was FM, saying ‘nowt to spend it on in Scotland’! Nothing. Not housing, health, social care, education, infrastructture, jobs creation, the environment, nope not a freaking thing. He has a heck of a lot to answer for, he totally utterly shafted Scotland and the people of Scotland. His Labour branch HQ’d in London did absolutely nothing good for Scotland in TEN years at Holyrood, ten whole years, nothing. They did though plunge Scotland’s councils into many years of future ‘debt’ with their PFI scams for buildings many of which were not well built and not fit for purpose, disgraceful, that ‘debt’ is still with councils. It’s money that could have been spent on Covid and any number of crucial areas to keep Scotland from going under.
          What a disgrace, it’s bloody tragic. How dare he McConnell talk about ‘democracy’ and ‘accountablity’, he should be locked up for what he did to Scotland, then taking a seat in HOL’s as reward, £300+ a day. Lying scheming trougher.

  38. Petra says:

    ”An Eileen Budd Production. Nice concise information here about our issues with the Union. Feel free to share. #IndyRef2 #DissolveTheUnion #SaorAlba.” https://mobile.twitter.com/1606kenreid/status/1313563672208433152

    ……………………………

    ‘Press ‘tsunami of demonisation’ of the First Minister risks thousands of lives.’

    ”In my local store this morning, the disgraceful undermining of a strategy, backed by experts such as professors Bauld and Sridhar, personalised so as to demonise the the most caring and popular and most democratically representative political leader, in the UK. The press should be ashamed. You can’t even see the supposedly intelligent Telegraph, top left, shouting: Sturgeon signs death sentence for Scottish pubs.”..

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2020/10/08/press-tsunami-of-demonisation-of-the-first-minister-risks-thousands-of-lives/

  39. Petra says:

    ‘50% rise in vaccinations to over two million people but BBC use two-week old story from Fife to undermine it.’

    ..”Then to evidence the above claim, ‘they’ get one to say:

    ”I think they. It is just really bad. I think they have handled it really badly.”..

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2020/10/08/50-rise-in-vaccinations-to-over-two-million-people-but-bbc-use-two-week-old-story-from-fife-to-undermine-it/

    ……………………………..

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

    https://indyref2.space/forum/topic/links-thursday-8-october-2020/

  40. Petra says:

    ‘Boris Johnson and Priti Patel warned attacks on lawyers could incite violence.’

    ”Scotland’s top lawyers are demanding that Boris Johnson and Priti Patel “stop the denigration of the legal profession” for fear that it could lead to violence.

    In an astonishing and scathing open letter to the Prime Minister and Home Secretary, the Faculty of Advocates, which represents the Scottish Bar, warns that attacks on the character of legal professionals poses a threat to democracy.”..

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/18779672.boris-johnson-priti-patel-warned-attacks-lawyers-incite-violence/

    …………………………………..

    Maybe it’s about time the Faculty of Advocates demanded that those (and we know who they are) who are stirring up hatred against Nicola Sturgeon cut it out before it leads to violence.

    ‘LISTEN: BBC host outraged as caller brands Nicola Sturgeon ‘Scotland’s Hitler.’

    ..”The host asked the caller if he believed the measures could stall the spread of Covid-19. Jimmy replied: “Well, I’ve heard in the last week when people were talking about was there a possibility, I’ve heard them referring to Nicola Sturgeon as Scotland’s Hitler.”

    Jardine paused for a second before asking: “Well who said that?” The caller said “folk in pubs” had been making the comparison. Jardine cut Jimmy off: “That’s an outrageous thing to say. An absolutely outrageous thing to say.”..

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/18779299.listen-bbc-host-outraged-caller-brands-nicola-sturgeon-scotlands-hitler/

  41. stewartb says:

    As mentioned by others above and posted also earlier BTL on John Robertson’s Tusker blog, this merits repetition. It also presents a ‘test’ for the BBC, including in Scotland. Will any of this be reported?

    The Faculty of Advocates in Scotland has written a remarkable open letter to the UK Prime Minister and Home Secretary, as reported in The National.

    See: https://www.thenational.scot/news/18779672.boris-johnson-priti-patel-warned-attacks-lawyers-incite-violence/?c=s9w3vs

    It’s in response to the PM speech to the Tory party conference when he stated that his government was “stopping the whole criminal justice system from being hamstrung by what the home secretary would doubtless – and rightly – call the lefty human rights lawyers, and other do-gooders”.

    The dean of the Faculty, Roddy Dunlop QC in a letter approved by its office bearers, writes: “I deprecate the recent pronouncements – from the Home Office, then from the Home Secretary, and latterly from the Prime Minister himself – to the effect that there is a problem with ‘lefty lawyers’ or ‘activist ‘lawyers’ who are ‘hamstringing’ the justice system.

    “Whether the topic is immigration, or crime, or the constitution, lawyers that act against the state are not being ‘lefty’, nor ‘activist’: they are doing their professional duty. It is simply unconscionable for Her Majesty’s Government to decry in this way the actions of professionals who … are not at liberty to do otherwise.”

    Dunlop goes on: “In this country (and the same cannot be said of all countries), instances of violence against lawyers are, fortunately, rare. However, in a climate of increasing populism, this sort of rhetoric is not only facile and offensive: it is potentially harmful.”

    “With great power comes great responsibility, and I have to say – with great respect – that I simply cannot fathom why is thought in any way appropriate to attempt to vilify, in public, those that are simply doing their job, in accordance with the rule of law.”

    The National reports backing for the Faculty’s position from Scottish Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf and from Joanna Cherry MP. In a tweet on the matter, the Justice Secretary observed: “Radio silence from Scot Tories on this.”

    Will BBC Scotland follow the Tories’ example and remain silent on the matter, and in so doing demonstrate its ‘world leading’ expertise in bias by omission? Time will tell but breath should not be held!

    By (worrying) coincidence I came across this today thanks to Richard Murphy’s excellent Tax Research blog. The combination of these two developments should be extremely worrying for all that value our social democracy.

    Lord Neuberger, former president of the UK Supreme Court is reported in the Guardian regarding comments he made yesterday:

    ‘Addressing an online meeting of lawyers, Lord Neuberger on Wednesday evening condemned the internal market bill, which enables the government to breach international law and exempts some of its powers from legal challenge.

    “Once you deprive people of the right to go to court to challenge the government, you are in a dictatorship, you are in a tyranny,” Neuberger told the webinar. “The right of litigants to go to court to protect their rights and ensure that the government complies with its legal obligation is fundamental to any system … You could be going down a very slippery slope”.’ ,

    This is remarkable language for a very senior (and arguably ‘establishment’, given his recent role) lawyer. Has the UK BBC reported this I wonder?

    Many have rightly been concerned that Scotland has been taken out of the EU against the wishes of a majority of its electorate. Arguably, what we are facing now is even more fundamental to our rights as citizens and therefore more urgent to act to avoid – namely being dragged into this Tory regime’s populist hell that we most certainly did not vote for. Dissolving the Union becomes more urgent every month of Tory rule that passes.

  42. Petra says:

    Note the word ”sinister”. 65 million of course includes the Scots!

    Dr Philippa Whitford:- ”Sinister UK Gov are offering data on 65m NHS patients – NHSScot is totally separate organisation under control of @scotgov.” https://mobile.twitter.com/Dr_PhilippaW/status/1313618030849601536

    …………………………………..

    The Freudian slip 😎.

    ‘Liz Truss vows to ‘undermine’ farmers in post-Brexit trade deals.’

    .“So will the Secretary of State listen to reason and write into the law the protection of all UK farming standards against imports that don’t meet them?”

    Truss, however, muddled her words in her seemingly self-assured response. She replied: “In any trade deal we strike, we will be taking into account our high standards to make sure our farmers are undermined.”

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/18779917.liz-truss-vows-undermine-farmers-post-brexit-trade-deals/

  43. Dr Jim says:

    Notice how the Tories immediately reach for their instant mammy defence when attacked calling themselves Her Majesty’s Government like it gives them more gravitas and they’re responsible only to her and not the democracy they pretended to be when they asked the people to vote for them

    Democracy or Monarchy? actually it’s neither, it’s dictatorship because how can Scotland be in a Union when our votes have not counted towards the election of a UK government in the House of Commons parliament for 65 years, that means the UK government is imposed on Scotland by the will of the voters in England, plus it makes clear that Scotland cannot contribute to a UK government unless we accept the political parties chosen for us by England

    So if Scotland chose not to vote for any so called UK party one is still chosen for us by England

    How is it still possible that there are still people in Scotland who don’t understand that no matter who they think they vote for it makes no difference to the result which is always decided in and by England who then decide to buy bloody *lawnmowers with our money yet we have no lawns*

    That last part was a metaphorical example to show that England buys all sorts of shit with our money that benefits them then tells us we owe them for it, or how about they just piss down our necks and tell us it’s raining

    • Jack collatin says:

      The Royal navy has 34 admirals, rear admirals, and vice admirals, but only 19 warships.
      All are based in S England, yet we cots pay 8.4 percent of their wages and Accommodation.
      Scotland’s navy will be leaner fitter, and a helluva a lot less expensive.

  44. Welsh Sion says:

    How is it still possible that there are still people in Scotland who don’t understand that no matter who they think they vote for it makes no difference to the result which is always decided in and by England who then decide to buy bloody *lawnmowers with our money yet we have no lawns*

    That last part was a metaphorical example to show that England buys all sorts of shit with our money that benefits them then tells us we owe them for it, or how about they just piss down our necks and tell us it’s raining

    _________________

    No need for metaphors, Dr Jim.

    You recall how ‘Failing’ Grayling instigated contracts with a ferry company which had no ferries …

  45. Jack collatin says:

    And where was the so called ‘leader’ of the blue Tories tonight on the eve of the new Covid restrictions in Scotland?
    He was doing his real ‘day job’ running the line at the England Wales friendly at Wembley..
    Of course Baroness Davidson of Rape Clause was on her pal Kirsty’s Newsnight talking nonsense about the latest measures to curb Covid in Scotland.

    I wonder what his Moray constituents feel about their MP running about in shorts in London the night before new Covid measures come in to place back home?
    And Tom Gordon, Better Together bitch, features that well known ‘socialist’ Lord McConnell, the man who gave England back 1.5 billion of our money because he couldn’t think of any thing to spend iy on in Scotland, get column inches talking p1sh about constitutional conventions, and fuck democracy in Scotland.

    They are laughing in Scotland’s face. The Brits; traitors to Scotland now, and not even hiding the fact.
    Their precious Gravy Train is about to hit the buffers.

  46. And where was the ‘leader’ of the Scottish Branch of the Blue Tories tonight on the eve of the fresh Covid restrictions in Scotland?
    He was doing his real job as linesman at the England versus Wales friendly at Wembley.
    The good people of Moray will sleep soundly in their beds tonight.
    He is ‘moonlighting’ again, when he is most needed.
    I hope The National features him in his wee shorts and flag with suitable caption.

    Covid? What Covid?

  47. Ken2 says:

    UK population, 66million+ approx.

    England 56million- (55.9million)

    Wales 3Million+ (3.2Million)

    NI 2million- (1.8Million)

    Scotland 5million+ (5.5million)

  48. Petra says:

    Joanna Cherry:- ” Why taking Westminster to court over Brexit bill may be a win-win.’

    On Wednesday night I took part in a webinar on the implications of the Internal Market Bill for the rule of law. Although hastily organised by the International Bar Association Human Rights Institute it was hugely oversubscribed, with 1000 watching online and another 1000 unable to get on the call. It is now available to watch at ibanet.org. I was asked to speak about the impact of the bill on devolution. I argued that what we are seeing is a rebalancing of the constitutional settlement in the United Kingdom with the clear delineation between reserved and devolved powers swept away.’..

    ..”So, the bill has implications not just for devolution but for the Union between Scotland and England. It is important that we don’t just look at that constitutional relationship through the prism of devolution. It has wider underpinnings including the Treaty of Union.”

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/18781256.joanna-cherry-taking-westminster-court-brexit-bill-may-win-win/

    ……………………………………………..

    Foster? Who the h*ll is he? Everyone and their granny having their say on Scotland 🤬 .

    ‘A UK minister has rejected calls for Scotland to be given control over immigration, saying that Holyrood is only pursuing the issue to “suit its agenda of separatism.’

    ”Parliamentary Under Secretary Kevin Foster also claimed that devolving powers on immigration could create “confusion” within the UK.”..

    “An immigration system tailored to Scotland’s specific needs is a necessity – even Tory MSPs like Murdo Fraser agree.”..

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/18781041.kevin-foster-holyrood-asks-immigration-powers-suit-separatist-agenda/

  49. Petra says:

    What does Jack McConnell, et al, have to say about that?

    ”Scottish Trades Union Congress backs new independence referendum now the Internal Market Bill proceeds without Scottish Parliament consent. This is a massive blow to Unionism and the Labour Party #indyref2 #STUC.” https://mobile.twitter.com/80_mcswan/status/1314112555510648832

    …………………………………………………

    ‘Scotland will always uphold international law.’

    ..”Until the beginning of this year of course, Scotland — as an ancient nation with its own legal system, education system and devolved government — was in a union with the rest of the U.K. while at the same time being inside the European Union.

    In relation to the U.K., it is important to emphasize that Scotland is not, and has never been, considered a region of a larger unitary state but a country in a voluntary union of nations.”..

    http://www.politico.eu/article/sturgeon-brexit-scotland-europe-covid19-law/

  50. Petra says:

    ‘While Sturgeon takes decisive action on Covid, Johnson just blusters.’

    ..”If success is defined in nationalistic terms as doing better than England – leading more decisively, intervening before things get out of hand – that popularity is easy to understand. Sturgeon has stepped in when Scotland’s big cities are still barely warm by English hotspot standards (Glasgow has 222 cases per 100,000 compared with 476 in Newcastle). And Sturgeon was careful to show her working, publishing detailed papers linking an uptick of Covid cases from August to hospitality reopening in July.”..

    ..”Compare that with Boris Johnson’s baffling 10pm curfew on English pubs, a compromise seemingly cobbled together after the cabinet couldn’t agree on anything else, which city mayors fear is simply encouraging pubgoers to congregate at the off-licence before carrying on the party at home.”..

    https://amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/oct/08/while-sturgeon-takes-decisive-action-on-covid-johnson-just-blusters?CMP=share_btn_tw&__twitter_impression=true

    ………………………………..

    ‘US unions to tell Greg ‘Unlucky’ Hands and Scottish Whisky producers ‘Tough shit pal!?’

    ”In a masterfully vague headline designed to hide the awful truth, the Herald hides the almost certain truth that the UK will do a trade deal on the USA’s terms and sacrifice the interests of the Scottish whisky producers and workers to get any deal.”..

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2020/10/09/us-unions-to-tell-greg-unlucky-hands-and-scottish-whisky-producers-tough-shit-pal/

  51. Petra says:

    ‘There is no ‘scientific divide’ over herd immunity.’

    ”On October 4, in a wood-panelled room at an event hosted by a libertarian think tank, three scientists signed a document that they say offers an alternative way of responding to the Covid-19 pandemic. The signing of this so-called “Great Barrington Declaration” was greeted with clinking champagne glasses before the signatories jetted off to Washington DC on the invite of White House coronavirus advisor Scott Atlas.”..

    http://www.wired.co.uk/article/great-barrington-declaration-herd-immunity-scientific-divide

    …………………………………….

    “They haven’t thought it through, in terms of what it would feasibly mean.” Professor Devi Sridhar, of Edinburgh University, says the Great Barrington Declaration against blanket lockdown restrictions is not scientific or accurate.” https://mobile.twitter.com/Channel4News/status/1313909400889896960

  52. Petra says:

    Richard Murphy:- ‘The Great Barrington Declaration has nothing to do with epidemiology and a great deal to do with far right economics.’

    ..”This cull – which they call ‘harvesting’ (because that sounds so much nicer) – would achieve are four things. The first would be a reduced size of the state because of reduced pension payments. Second, there would also be a reduced size of the state because of reduced medical spending. And third, the logic is that taxes could Then be reduced as a result. And fourth, as a consequence, the income of the surviving younger people would increase. It’s easy to see why the right wing like this so much. But it’s still best described, in my opinion, as a cull.”..

    ..”As a result of which I add one final thought. If some can sign up to this what will they sign up to next? Remember, first they came for those they deemed to be the elderly….. You can fill in the blanks.”

    http://www.taxresearch.org.uk/Blog/2020/10/07/the-great-barrington-declaration-has-nothing-to-do-with-epidemiology-and-a-great-deal-to-do-with-far-right-economics/

    ……………………………………………

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

    https://indyref2.space/forum/topic/links-friday-9-october-2020/

    • Alex Clark says:

      Definitely, we have seen an increase in the talking up of herd immunity in recent days, I mentioned it a few days ago when I first noticed the idea once again being given prominence in the news.

      It most certainly is those on the extreme right wing that are pushing this. It is doomed to failure as you cannot protect the elderly and sick by isolating them totally from the rest of society. Many need care and it is inevitable that they will come into contact with the wider world so they will continue to get sick.

      There is no doubt that the NHS would be overwhelmed with sick people in just a matter of a few weeks if the virus was left to run free in a society with no guidance or restrictions. It’s a non-starter but the right will continue to push the case for it as being the only solution. They are well known liars.

      • Classic fascism. Drip drip drip extreme right wing fascist philosophy, and test the waters.
        Hitler gassed the Jews, the mentally ill, Gypsies (Dross favourites) Trade unionists, Communists, and any who stood in the way of his Third Wagnerian Reich.
        I’m 73 now.
        There are about 30% of Scots of pension age.
        Just think of the jobs created when they come to brick me and my Everlovin’ up into our wee shack.

        I watched Davidson ‘putting the boot in’ at FMQ yesterday. Since the Blue Tories’ base comprises mostly white haired drains on the economy, what do they think of this bloated little opportunist’s contribution to parliamentary debate yesterday?
        Davidson’s evil wee smirk after her pointless irrelevant Sturgeon.Murrell muck raker said it all.

        This bloated little chancer is off to join Jack McConnell in the Golden Palace of Privilege next May.

        Meanwhile the pointless Dross who is billed as ‘leader’ of the Blue Tory Branch Ofice is traipsing all over Covid ravaged Europe running the line at footie matches.
        His role as Blue Tory space filler is so pointless he doesn’t even need to get involved in saving Scotland from this plague.

        They want to kill off us pensioners, so that the capitalists can get back to ‘normal’ making profit, and screwing the working population.

        Richard Leonard is an absolute plonker, who cannot even read out his ‘outrage’ without stumbling over the words.

        Rennie is just a horrible joke, an affront to democracy.

        In 6 days time, the EU 27 will run out of patience.

        We must begin the fight for freedom now.

      • grizebard says:

        Yes, you read this one right. These people had a big exposure on the EBC R4 lunchtime news the other day. Let it rip through young people (despite the risks for an unfortunate few) and piously hope that the vulnerable can be protected somehow. It’s right-wing politics intruding into a health crisis, a mini-me of the “made in the USA” disaster.

    • There are several million doctors in the world , over one million doctors n USA alone .
      So the Barrington Declaration thought up by the American institute for economic research has managed to find 6000 experts worldwide so what ?
      How many f those 6000 experts are doctors ?

      A tiny tiny tiny proportion of the three million or more doctors worldwide

  53. Welsh Sion says:

    Just a big thank you to Scotland – in particular to those from:

    “Outside of Wales, the highest support had come from Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey in Scotland.”

    Petition calling on Westminster to grant Welsh independence referendum signed by thousands

    9th October 2020

    A petition calling on Westminster to grant Wales a referendum on independence has been signed by over 2,000 people.

    The petition created on Monday by Carina Josephine Williams of Anglesey calls on the House of Commons to “let there be a referendum for Welsh independence”.

    The petition can be found here:

    https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/550579

  54. Dr Jim says:

    There’s a thing called the Convention of UK democracy which is all about increasing democracy within the UK, and these folk are organizing a citizens assembly drawn from *all 3 main political parties of the UK* that’s Tory Labour and Lib Dem
    but there are exclusions as you can see of the SNP Plaid Cymru the Greens and Northern Ireland parties because the Convention says these parties only represent micro parts of the UK

    So when they say *all 3 of the main political parties of the UK* they mean all 3 political parties of England and sod everybody else, because in their words we are *Micro* and England = UK

    This is a thing and it’s happening right now, and they’re not even batting an eyelid as they pursue it

  55. deelsdugs says:

    How very strange…I’ve not been getting the blog posts via email since mid September…have I been banned or in the ‘blog jail’…

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