Rees Mogg burns the union at the stake

It ought to be clear by now that when the Prime Malinger referred to devolution as a disaster he wasn’t just referring to the SNP, as Douglas Ross tried to claim in a screeching of brakes that was as about as convincing as his party’s claim to be committed to strengthening and deepening devolution.

This is because Johnson has now been joined in his denunciation of devolution by Jacob Rees mogg, who represents17th century witch burners in the House of Commons. the pretendy aristo Jacob – the vulgarian’s idea of what a posh person is like, unfurled a roll of parchment hand crafted from the skin of a virgin peasant to opine that this conservative government must undo all the ‘constitutional tinkering’ introduced under the Labour government of TonyBlair. Since by far the most significant example of that ‘constitutional tinkering’ was the establishment of devolution for Scotland and Wales, you don’t need to cast a spell using the tears of everyone whose life has been destroyed by Tory reforms of the social security system to divine what he was talking about. the Haunted double breasted suit took time out from his other job as a villain in the Beano to announce: “Under Labour, our constitution was vandalised and the whole of the United Kingdom suffered. We must undo their foolish tinkering.” This is not a statement which can be spun by desperate Scottish Tories as being ‘really’ a reference to THATESSEMPEE, although that probably won’t stop them trying.

Jacob and Johnson have between the two of them this week blown up the hopes of that not insignificant section of Scottish public opinion which isn’t entirely sold on the idea of independence but which would prefer see Scotland remain a part of the UK but with more devolved powers. In particular they’ve destroyed the ability of the Labour party in Scotland to appeal to those who still harbour a fond hope that there is still some life in the federalism fairy. Jacob has burned the federalism fairy at the stake and used its ashes to fertilise a field of poppies. Unionism in Scotland is now reduced to its most staunch and bitter core, that small fraction of the Scottish population which would like to see Holyrood abolished. The far bigger segment of more moderate anti- independence opinion now has nowhere to go. Only someone who was either delusional or deliberately setting out to deceive could now argue that devolution can be strengthened and enhanced within the UK. In fact it is now clear that the existing devolution settlement faces a direct and immediate threat to its existence.

We’ve come a very long way from the promises that were made to Scotland in 2014 in order to secure a no vote. That vote did not, as promised, secure Scotland’s place in the EU. instead we are facing the very real prospect of crashing out of the EU without a trade deal, the absolute worst case scenario which the Leave campaign assured us wasn’t going to happen. Instead of devolution being strengthened and entrenched, and no changes being made to devolution without the express consent of Holyrood, we see that it is being directly assaulted by the UK government’s Internal markets bill while senior figures in the British government openly talk about undoing the entire devolution settlement without making even a pretence that the views of the people of Scotland need to be taken into account.

The choice we now face is starker and simpler than before. It’s either independence or incorporation into a unitary Brexit state with no Scottish parliament to protect us from the depredations of the Conservatives and their cronies. Increasingly the people of Scotland are coming to realise that Scotland can either make its own destiny with independence or have a destiny imposed upon it without regard to Scotland’s needs or wants. Witchfinder Rees Mogg has just burned the union at the stake.

You may have noticed that I’ve not been updating the blog as frequently. Unfortunately since the stroke it is now taking me a lot longer to type out an article. Whereas before I could write a 1000 word article in an hour or so, it now takes four or five hours and I am left utterly drained and shattered afterwards because I am still dealing with post-stroke fatigue, which is a common issue faced by people recovering from a stroke. Hopefully this will resolve over time, but for the time being I just don’t have the energy and stamina which I had before. So unfortunately for the next few weeks and months I will have to update the blog once or twice a week instead of daily.

In some good news , I am now able to get from the living room to the toilet without relying on the walking stick. My balance is getting better and my legs are getting stronger. My own personal Michael Gove is learning to do as he is told. I am getting some more movement back in my left hand, but there’s still very little sensation or strength. However it is still only seven weeks since I had the stroke so I’m doing very well considering. There is still plenty of potential for further spontaneous improvement in the weeks and months to come. I still have some issues with a lack of attention in the left hand side of my visual field, but I’ve noticed a lot of improvement there too.

I have set up a crowd funder in order to ensure that I have a home that is suitable for my changed needs following my stroke you can donate directly to the crowd funder on gofundme by clicking the following link,

Alternatively you can donate by Paypal, using the donate button or log into Paypal and send a payment to the email address Or just click the donate button. If you don’t have a Paypal account, just select “donate with card” after clicking the button. If you would prefer to donate some other way, e.g. by bank transfer or cheque please email me at for further details. Once again thank you all so much. You are giving a practical demonstration of the better more loving and caring Scotland that we are all striving for.

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367 comments on “Rees Mogg burns the union at the stake

  1. A welcome dissection of the JRM’s latest devolution trashing Paul. But that recovery of yours is first and only priority. More important times lie ahead, and vital that we have you fit and firing on as many cylinders as Michael Gove will allow. Store it all up for that Wee Ginger Book. There’s an army ready to help with that production. All you needs a dictaphone…

  2. Republicofscotland says:

    Mr Kavanagh, you should take things a bit more easy, I’m sure the blog will take care of itself for now, your health is more important, I’m sure your regular posters and lurkers and not so regular poster will understand, anyway a good article.

    Thank you.

  3. Movy says:

    You take care of yourself and keep in touch WHEN you’re able to do so.
    We’ll still be here waiting for your pronouncements – WHEN you’re fit enough to make them.
    PS Great article – as always. Mogg does belong in the Beano – you’re right!

  4. exile says:

    It’s good to hear you’re making progress. Please don’t work too hard. Your health comes first. Thank you for all you have done, and are doing, for Scotland. Best wishes to you and your husband for your future together in your new home.

  5. Dr Jim says:

    Keep wiggling everything and you’ll soon be waving a wee flag and walking a wee distance helped along by 100.000 pals

  6. carolclark1 says:

    Awe Paul your health comes first. It’s great to hear that you’re progressing so well, but don’t overdo it. Besides you’ll have a flitting to arrange soon as well. That takes a lot out of anyone so be careful.

    As for the poor wee federalism fairy I new she wisnae going anywhere, but burnt at the stake and the ashes scattered for a field of poppies. Whit a shame, they should have left her to flee oot the windae and away from the gordosaurus.

  7. P Harvey says:

    Great blog Paul but keep your strength for improving your recovery. Unfortunately, the mogg,Gove etc will be with us for a short time longer
    Hopefully, following next May the mandate for Independence will be clear and the horrors of the tories will be history
    Keep well!

  8. Paul, I was watching a Ray Bradbury writers’ seminar, (2001) and he described how writing was therapy for him when he was in hospital for a month (stroke, too, I think) a year earlier.

    I have a sense that it is one of your coping mechanisms too.
    But take it easy.

    “She wanted to get at the hate of them all, to pry at it and work at it until she found a little chink, and then pull out a pebble or a stone or a brick and then a part of the wall, and, once started, the whole edifice might roar down and be done away with.”
    ― Ray Bradbury, The Illustrated Man

    That’s you, Paul; getting at the hate of them all, prying at it, working at it, until you find little chinks and pulling out pebbles, stones, bricks, and parts of their wall of hate and intransigence, and once started, their whole Brit Nat edifice with a mighty roar will collapse and be done away with.

    I have observed before that come No Deal Brexit, the English Parliament will simply close Holyrood.
    What could we do to stop them? Armed resistance?

    Take your time, man. You are needed over the coming months.

    • Drew Anderson says:

      Wouldn’t the Council of Europe have something to say? It was CoE pressure on the Blair regime (to address the democratic deficit) that led to the devolution settlement. It wasn’t New Labour’s spontaneous desire, much as they like to claim it was.

      Quality over quantity Paul! If it’s taking as long to put together one post as five, maybe restrict yourself to a maximum of two per week? Three seems a bit much at this stage, despite the positive news on your rehabilitation.

  9. […] Wee Ginger Dug Rees Mogg burns the union at the stake It ought to be clear by now that when the Prime Malinger referred to devolution as a […]

  10. grizebard says:

    Jacob has burned the federalism fairy at the stake

    Ah, but will the gallant Federal Broon dash to her rescue? Judging by last time, will he f…. He’ll just carry on regardless as if it never happened.

  11. ArtyHetty says:

    The law breakers at WM telling Scotland ‘no’ after all they promised in 2014. Even the most staunch no voters surely can’t be happy with the EngGov’s massive lies and having their freedom of movement removed, they must now see there is no status quo, there is no equal union, and there never was. I have a wee book/pamplet, called, ‘Scotland’s Scrap of Paper, full text of union of 1707 with notes, Declaration of Independence,Radical rising of 1820, Policy of Scottish nationalist. One of an excellent series of ‘Pamplets’ printed in the 1960s, or 70’s I would think, though no date on it. produced by ‘Scots secretariat’ it cost ’10p per month’ so is some time back! Also have ‘Buy Scottish Goods’ by same author, Archie Lamont. They make for fascinating reading, he of course makes the same arguments as today about why Scotland is seriously shafted by being shackled to the (so called) UK. There was also a weekly published called, ‘Scots Independent’, ‘supports the movement for Scottish self government’. Anyway these might still be found available online, of in charity shops.
    Ah OK I just found a link to them, the word ‘nationalist’ is used of course back then, though Scotland is of course an internationalist country.
    About five are available at the British Online Archives. Search for ‘Scottish Nationalist Leaflets, 1844-1973’ via their site.
    I wouldn’t share specific ones online in case of copyright, which it is not clear if it is open source, typical.
    An interesting site, even more reading to do!

    Excellent article Paul, it’s good to hear you are making progress. Take it easy, we can all chat and exchange ideas and info here, and can I say that Prof John over at Talking-Up Scotland needs a wee plug, he seems really despondent that his readship is reduced, yet he works so hard for us all.

  12. robert alexander harrison says:

    Johnson is a slimeball that trys to make out hes your pal while hiding the knife to stab you with but mogg he dont even hide that he thinks the average Joe is trash hes so arrogant that you me and everyone else is just vermin in his self entitled eyes this is a guy who uses his own son as a shield despicable snob he is.

  13. Republicofscotland says:

    A bit of good news Jenny Marra is to stand down at next years Holyrood elections, she won’t be missed.

  14. Capella says:

    Yes Scot has a campaign video – Brian Cox soundtrack

  15. Dr Jim says:

    You have to laugh at the Twitter world of the Yoon, hundreds of people who understand nothing about economics arguing about economics, then when the facts are demonstrated they deny the facts, then when the facts are confirmed they deny the credentials of those who confirm the facts

    We’re in for that long boring moronic incessant knuckle dragging Union flag waving procession of Twonks who were knocked on the head as children or have degrees in baton twirling flute playing and big drum banging supported by the British media and the self interested tycoons like Sir Ian Wood and other snotty wee British Peerage hopers who know their supporters are all of those previous things sitting on nightly TV panels talking the same mince as 2014 all over again
    Can’t wait for them to tell us Spain will veto Scotland’s entry into the EU again, bring back Manuel Barosso he can be bought to say anything for a tanner

    Watch out for a low flying Jackie Bird, oh dear God why did I remind myself

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      Watch out for a low flying Jackie Bird, oh dear God why did I remind myself


      Umbrellas at the ready! Low-flying Jackie Bird’s tend to excrete … (and pass on undesirable messages.)

      • Drew Anderson says:

        Talking of flying…

        Will you will be avoiding BA, sorry EA, where possible in future?

        Supporting England over Wales at the rugby, AKA how to alienate 3M potential customers.

        • robert alexander harrison says:

          They cant use the initials or game company electronic arts might sue for copyright remember the wwf case.

  16. Alba woman says:

    Paul your recovery is paramount. Your piece is excellent …So your intellectual capabilities are thankfully intact. Thank goodness.

    Fatigue is difficult as you really want to write and do things but these wishes are just that as you are too tired….I had stage three cancer some years ago. At the end of the treatment I could have slept for a year.

    It’s a matter of seriously pacing yourself….practice being very good to yourself practically and psychologically. You will recover …maybe not to your past energy levels but enough for you to fully enjoy your life again.

    I have been listening to the BBC England giving forth on the question of Scottish Independence. Every opportunity is taken for voices to say they cannot understand why Scotland wants to leave the U.K. The voices do not go any further in any search for understanding. No mention of Scotland’s vote on Brexit and our continuing wish to remain in the EU. It’s as if we are insulting England and this will not do. I have yet to hear a voice which has any insight into Scottish desires and ambitions for its people.

    • Dr Jim says:

      *Short memory syndrome* leading to ignorance arrogance and downright bad manners

      It’s as though they didn’t notice Scotland voted against all of their shit, ooh! *Exceptionalism*

  17. Millsy says:

    Great news that you are progressing so well , Paul !

    Scotland’s Parliament ( and Wales’s too ) at the mercy of the WM Tories after Brexshit is a frightening thought .
    And for those who still believe that the Labour Party will be able to offset the destruction wrought by the Nasty Party (copyright T. May ) all I can say is : SIR Keir Starmer and Ian Murray ! Would you trust these guys to sell you a slightly tarnished federal constitutional settlement ?

    No !

    Our only hope now is in Independence. If any No voter from 2014 still thinks that the Union is the way forward then I pity them . They will be sadly let down ( again! ) if the hyenas and jackals in the Tory Party are allowed to continue their savaging of the UK economy after Dec 31 . When we get the opportunity next year to vote in the referendum we HAVE to grab it .
    Scotland won’t survive another No vote .

  18. yesindyref2 says:

    I’m not sure if the Tories are doing it deliberately, or are so thick they don’t have a clue about Scotland. And I’m not sure if it makes any difference, the result is the same.

    In my pneumonic case it’s been near a year and a half and I still don’t have the stamina I used to though that might be older age. Similar with my wife who three years ago near to the day had major life-saving surgery including being resuscitated in her hospital bed surrounded by about 30 doctors before being rushed down for that surgery. It’s not just physical trauma it’s mental.

    It does have a really really good side to it though – life is precious and you can enjoy the little things even more than ever, including a good belly-aching laugh.

    Careful now. Don’t split your sides!

  19. Liz Strauli says:


  20. Bob Lamont says:

    Aye, only Mogg’s affected enunciation of “constitutional tinkering” to refer to such as Holyrood could convey the contempt the Tories have for democracy, his “We must undo their foolish tinkering” was the political equivalent of “Game’s over, I’m taking my ball back”, with all the affected airs and graces of the 19th century.
    It was not just a rude wakeup-call to the ambivalent and swithering over indy, but to those regions in England aspiring to emulate the success of Holyrood. Coming during an ongoing Covid public health disaster in England, together with recent corruption scandals involving Tory pals, Mogg could not have picked a worst time to float his greater centralisation boat….

    Eloquently observed and humorous as always, but don’t fret on reduced output, it’s quality not quantity which counts, we’re just grateful you’re still with us to brighten these dark days.
    Good news on the health front even if patience is worn thin, if tired simply doze off and let your body recover, perhaps even emulate Granny Weatherwax, leaving a prominent not, “I ATE’NT DEAD”. 😉

  21. Marybel Tracey says:

    I love reading all you have to say. I often get a laugh out loud moment which is always beneficial.Doing things that give you an uplift is important but be cautious and don’t push yourself too hard. Your health is more precious than our wee ginger dug fix. Best wishes to you and yours.

  22. Hamish100 says:

    Clegg (ex record?) on radio saying NI may have the access to EU as part of Brexit deal. So Scotland voting for something ie remain in EU, is ignored but the threat of violence in Ireland is acceded too. Surely a bad example for democracy.

  23. Pogmothon says:

    Ah so the moggy is felt to actually be a cartoon from the Beano. Sorry must disagree on at least two counts.
    In theory it’s rather demeaning to the people of Dundee, who have taken those characters to heart more so than the rest of us.
    Personally I have always seen the moggy, as the villainous banker/financier character of old. You know the one with the catch phrase “Gimme the deed to your ranch, or I’ll tie you up and throw you on the railroad track”
    Or possibly the villainous character from the wacky races spin off, Sylvester Sneekly

  24. diabloandco says:

    delighted to read your new article but taking time for you is more important ,as someone earlier said the folk below the line will keep it going until you really are fit and well – maybe they’ll not keep it going to your liking but you can pillory those who abuse the space.
    Take much care.

  25. andyfromdunning says:

    The Moggy from the green benches is at least being truthful and has articulated what we all know clearly in support of Boris the Numptie’s chat to his northern supporters last week.

    We need to send a link of his voice saying this to everyone in Scotland.

    Glad you continue to improve Paul. You will be able to help Peter washing the dishes soon.

  26. Republicofscotland says:

    “Former special adviser to Scottish Labour’s three first ministers has come out in favour of independence, arguing that it is “fundamentally important” that there is another referendum on the issue.

    “Economist Duncan Maclennan, a professor of public policy at Glasgow university, was a central policy figure in the early days of devolution, advising Donald Dewar, Henry McLeish and Jack McConnell.”

  27. Welsh Siôn says:


    Adam Price (Leader of Plaid Cymru) is giving the fraternal address at the SNP Conference today at 3pm. Speech available on YouTube and Plaid Cymru’s Facebook page.

    Here’s a preview:


    Plaid Cymru and the SNP, Wales and Scotland, can further cement and enhance our relationship in the Indy summer of ‘21 by coming together, all under one banner, in a Celtic Summit to map out our common aims and purpose as independence and mutual co-operation becomes the new normal.

    That’s what I’ll be telling delegates at the SNP Conference as I deliver Plaid Cymru’s Fraternal Address today.

    Both our nations need independence now more than ever. The Chancellor’s reward for the sacrifice and struggle of public sector workers is the poison pill of a public pay freeze. Where they build back bitter, we have a blueprint for our countries not just to be equal nations alongside all others, but nations of equals, fair and free, where freedom is the key to the flourishing of all.

    Now we know we can’t ‘Zoom’ our way towards independence without building ‘Teams’ to make it work!

    The SNP and Plaid Cymru are on the same team. Wales and Scotland are on the same team. And we, Scotland and Wales, are on this journey together.

    That’s why my first official phone call as the first pro-independence First Minister of Wales next May will be to Scotland’s First Minister, and the leader of our sister party, Nicola Sturgeon.

    Both the SNP and Plaid Cymru have elections to win before then of course, and we will work tirelessly to achieve that victory and begin the work needed to Change Wales for Good following May 6 2021.

    You can watch my speech to the SNP Conference on Plaid Cymru’s Facebook page at 3pm on Sunday 29 November. (It’ll also be available on YouTube for those who don’t use Facebook).

  28. Perhaps the Hon Sarah Smith, guest ;paper reviewer on Uncle Tam Marr’s wee Sunday London Show could get over to Falkirk this evening and confirm with Dross the Linesman as he gets on with his day job as an SFA flag waver that it was really his idea to provide free breakfasts and lunches for school children, and how he would fund it?
    Would families with three children, only get free school meals for two of them, to fall in with the Let the Third and any subsequent Child starve, to comply with the two child Rape Clause UCS cuts?

    Marr tried his best to have a go at NS over Covid Deaths, Care Homes, the Attainment Gap, Sex Pest Scandal Salmond, and Boris Says NO…
    He came across how he is.. a bitter wee Jock Brit Nat propagandist who clearly hates the sight of NS and is as frantically ‘British’ as the flowing locked Neil Oliver….

    Guissler on the Scottish Half Hoor Brit Nattery following Marr, gave Mike Russell a grilling, but with little impact, and to be fair, showed David Duguid up for what he is.. a hapless Tory Placemat Up Here….Dithering Duguid churned out the same old take back control nonsense, and Scotland decided in 2014, and the UK decided in 2016 garbage, which has been drummed in to all the Jock Brit Nats by their Spinsters….
    In 5 weeks, the EU slams the door shut…and Raab and Duguid sit and babble utter dangerous nonsense…

    Well done, Nicola and Mike Russell…The Brits are dying in front of us, on camera defending England…

    Go on, The Hon Sarah, get your track shoes on and head for Brockville….

    • Jim says:


      Talking of Dross, There was a post from jfngw in one of the previous threads saying that Dross was going to stand on the list vote in May.
      I thought ‘Surely that can’t be right if he is already an MP’ and looked it up and yes you can be both an MP and an MSP at the time.
      How is that going to work if he’s in westminster voting to reduce powers to Hollyrood and then sitting in Hollyrood castigating the Scot Guv for not doing stuff that they’ve just had the power to do it taken away from them.
      Also, is he then going to pick up his MSP salary of £64,470 on top of his MP salary of £81,932 and then of course his ‘Hobby’ which pays a basic salary of £30,000 plus £850 per match from the SFA plus £2245 per match from UEFA or FIFA.

      The law has to change regarding this MP and MSP at the same time, this is absolute nonsense.

      • We are living in the age of greed corruption and madness, Jim.
        Borin us Davidson of Rape Clause gets on her pins once a week in parliament ad gets her £1200 a week plus exes…a first reserve for her blessed ‘leader’ Dross.
        And we, the people have to put up with this?

      • I stand corrected. I am informed that Dross is running up and down the line at Parkhead today.
        I wonder when he fits in time to be in Moray?

    • Tam the Bam says:

      Falkirk F.C. are no longer @ Brockville Jack. Their new ground (nr.Grangemouth) is called The Falkirk Stadium.

      • I knew that, Tam. Just forgot….
        He was at Parkhead apparently.
        It is a day when everybody is putting this bemused old soul right, I’m afraid.

        • Tam the Bam says:

          If he was running the line @ Parkhead today Jack…I trust he is returning home via…helicopter or armoured car…apparently the home fans are a ‘tad’ displeased with their manager this evening!

          #morton man on the Interweb

          • Just checked, Tam.. Sellick got beat!!!!! Oh look, a squirrel..
            Haud the front page.

            How can Dross travel from London to Moray to Glasgow and back to London/Moray during level 4?
            Surely there a wee linesman in Glasgow who could flag wave just as well?

  29. jfngw says:

    BBC cherry picking weeks on Andrew Marr to prove Scottish government worse than England on Covid. So I had a look at the full stats using government figures.

    Tested deaths per million
    Scot 702 Eng 1037

    Registered deaths per million (dubious stat as it’s an opinion not a measure)
    Scot 978 Eng 1015

    Excess deaths per million (last five year average)
    Scot 987 Eng 1037

    Percentage of measured deaths by country
    Scot 6.41 Eng 87.57 NI 1.67 Wales 4.35

  30. Tam the Bam says:

    I note The Rev I.M. Unjolly is counting Nicola’s ‘blinks’ again.How pathetic!
    Of course..residing in sub-tropical Bath he wouldnt have realised Glasgow awoke to a very heavy frost this morning (the more ‘alert’ amongst his remaining sycophants may have noticed Nicola’s ‘frosty’ breath as she spoke).

    Oh and he also wants John Swinney’s head on a platter now also.
    Such a bitter and twisted individual.

  31. Dr Jim says:

    We know that the death rate in England was *adjusted* when they decided to declare at one point to actually readjust it downwards, forgive me for not being a mathematician or even someone who can be bothered counting stuff like this but how does one undead dead people and the media of a country say nothing about it, how do so many people die of natural causes more this year than in any other year, because in England that apparently happened

    My guess is that as usual in England after the crisis is over the media will decide to release the figures that they already know when they can do the least or most damage to the UK government depending on instructions from that government

    The interview with Scotland’s FM on the usual time lag Marr programme was as expected given the FMs announcement on Independence and Marr went into the interview armed with the usual nonsense printed by the Daily Mail and the Express, the same places the Bathistan Chronicle gets it’s information and style from, I’m just amazed that Marr didn’t notice that the FM blinks because apparently that’s become a feature of the Scottish Taliban’s reporting now as they see this as blinking important

    Marr lied and he knew he lied when he was distorting and conflating two different situations but you know what, he failed to convince the viewers in England I’m amazed to say because they spotted it which is unusual for them, and they didn’t like it, they saw it as an attempt to bully not question
    I just read a report from the Netherlands that slammed the BBC and Marr for what they called “disgraceful behaviour by a BBC TV presenter”, but then again the internet Bathistan Chronicle sees it as a great success that Andrew Marr is using almost word for word it the Daily Mail and Express employ in their efforts to prevent Independence from happening in Scotland

    One last word on the style and approach of these purveyors of drivel, not content with constant attacks on Nicola Sturgeon and her character the attacks have widened to include our finance secretary Kate Forbes MSP, those of you who feel the need do check on Kate Forbes Twitter account you will see the same wording and misogynistic outpouring of bile by some of the same, I hesitate to call them *people*

    It’s always open season on SNP women politicians with these *people* now that they’ve finished with the Labour party women, you’ll notice not a dicky bird was said about Monica Lennon’s period bill, whether you like her or not she did a good thing, but don’t mention it or her at all, not high profile enough y’see unlike another previous Labour woman

  32. JMD says:

    Re writing fatigue, why not get a couple of guest writers lined up? One or two articles a week and they get a link back to their blog or site in the short author bio at the end?

  33. Republicofscotland says:

    Marr was full of this morning especially his pathetic attempt to show deaths from Covid in Scotland were higher than England.

    Covid is out of control South of the border, one wonders just how many folk in England have died from the virus but their deaths have been register as dying from something else.

    AS well all know, but its worth repeating the BBC is our enemy.

    • Capella says:

      Same on Any Questions on Friday – the chair stated that Scotland had a higher death rate from Covid than England – 6 per million compared to England’s 5 per million according to the ONS. (IIRC can’t be bothered to listen again).

      I looked up the ONS and Travelling Tabby sites and nowhere does it state this. In fact the English figures are well above Scotland’s in every graph and table.

      It struck me that the BBC has told their presenters to say this at every opportunity. They lie about everything every day. Not worth tuning in if you are looking for facts. In a public health crisis it is criminal negligence on the part of a public service broadcaster.
      So it isn’t.

  34. Capella says:

    However, from that BBC report, Nicola Sturgeon was up to their tricks. she is too fly for them:

    The SNP leader was also asked about care home deaths after a University of Stirling report found that 47% of Scotland’s Covid deaths in the first wave were in care homes, compared to 30% in England.

    “If you look at excess deaths overall in care homes across the UK, excess deaths in Scotland have actually been lower than in England but a higher proportion of these excess deaths have been attributed to Covid,” she said.

    So in England more of the excess deaths have been attributed to other things, and certainly not to Covid. That simplistic view that the care home death toll is worse in Scotland perhaps doesn’t bear that scrutiny.

    • Petra says:

      What hope do we have when people like this are (mis) informing the public with dodgy figures no doubt supplied by the BBC?

      Positive Money:- ”Dear @BBCNews. No, the UK has not “maxxed out” its credit card 💳

      We invite you to watch this video to learn how public finances really work.

      Share if you think reporters should be educated in basic economics 👇”

    • Bob Lamont says:

      The problem for Marr/BBC/#10 is repeating a lie already debunked with the audience, the FM’s subtlety in answering will not have been not lost on Scots or English viewers.
      Few in England are not acutely aware (thanks to the work of a few decent journalists) of the gulf which persists between excess and covid attributed deaths in England let alone those for Care-Homes in the early stages, so for Marr to present this as “fact” destroyed his credibility instantly.

      Fiddling and obfuscation of figures is a glaring feature of this Tory government, for mainstream media to ignore it or further investigate it, is propaganda NOT journalism.
      This is part reason many in England looked to SG and it’s Covid Updates for accuracy, much to the fury of #10, and the accusations of political grandstanding which duly followed.

      When the media and anti-Indy politicians present known lies to the public under pretence of honesty and unity, it does not change public minds, it confirms the extent of collusion for political ends. The “boy who cried wolf” effect then applies to anything which follows, distrust.
      During what is a worrying public health emergency, the propagandists have done neither themselves nor the public any favours.

  35. Dr Jim says:

    I believe the broadcasters instructions will have been to try to undermine any achievement of Nicola Sturgeon’s and they see Covid as an opportunity to use as one of the tools to do that mainly because they imagine that if the Scottish people figure out that the FM doesn’t have a halo and wings then they won’t vote for her, it’s a bit like banning the Outlander series because Scots will get all riled up at images of kilts and swords you know the way we did when we almost voted for Independence last time because of a Mel Gibson in a film

    If you want to destroy a person you must first destroy their name *Art of War* which is where Scotland seems to be all the time, at war with the media, at war with Westminster, and of course at war amongst ourselves, but I’ll caveat that by saying these wars are almost all caused by people who don’t live in Scotland but reside in England the country we’re trying to break free from

    It funny how many arguments are caused even within households by people who don’t live in the house, somebody’s granny or sister or brother interfering in things that should be none of their business, I’m reminded of that similarity because the UK is always very keen to remind us that we’re a family of Nations and just like my in laws they can’t keep their big mouths to themselves in order to cause bother in ma hoose

    Like I always advise anybody in ma hoose, stop listening to other people who don’t live in the hoose, so maybe our politicians could do the same, why on earth do we bother interacting with the British media at all, we know every word they’re going to say, we know every argument they’re going to present, and the thing we know most of all is they don’t and won’t listen to our answers because their job is to cause trouble so why co-operate with their agenda at all

    Support for Independence in Wales is now more than when Scotland first decided to have a referendum on Independence, if memory serves we began at around 28% in the polls, Wales are at around 33% but do we see the British media hounding Wales in panic
    Northern Ireland has the option to vote on their destiny too and it looks very much like when they do they’re going to grab it with both hands yet the British media aren’t hounding them either, so why is it Scotland should be asking itself are the British media so panicky about Scotland taking our Independence but much less concerned about our friends in Wales and Northern Ireland

    That’s right, you know the answer to that one, we’re vermin according to PM Johnson but he loves us, devolution was the biggest mistake Tony Blair ever made, but he loves us, devolution’s been a disaster, but he loves us, devolution must be undone says Jacob Rees Mogg, but he loves us too, we know Scotland voted to remain in the EU but the *British* people have spoken, they tell us

    Sometimes Scots are British, sometimes Scots are part of *the country* sometimes Scotland belongs to the *one nation*, but only if we can be dominated in that position, if we say we just want to be Scotland well that’s just not going to be tolerated at all
    Because they love us so much they just can’t let us go, as long as they can domestically abuse us and we cannae call the Polis

    But we can vote, bye bye XX, those aren’t kisses btw

  36. Arthur Thomson says:

    Who would have thought that the Brits couldn’t count their dead? With their centuries of experience! Nah, truth is that they are incapable of being truthful.

    Fortunately, their audience are now aware the they lie at every turn.

    I have noticed that generally Nicola avoids arguing with stupid and just basically says that it’s too soon reach accurate conclusions. She is contented to let them spew their ludicrous lies for the world to see.

    Plenty time to call them out.

    • Dr Jim says:

      I believe the broadcasters instructions will have been to try to undermine any achievement of Nicola Sturgeon’s and they see Covid as an opportunity to use as one of the tools to do that mainly because they imagine that if the Scottish people figure out that the FM doesn’t have a halo and wings then they won’t vote for her, it’s a bit like banning the Outlander series because Scots will get all riled up at images of kilts and swords you know the way we did when we almost voted for Independence last time because of a Mel Gibson in a film

      If you want to destroy a person you must first destroy their name *Art of War* which is where Scotland seems to be all the time, at war with the media, at war with Westminster, and of course at war amongst ourselves, but I’ll caveat that by saying these wars are almost all caused by people who don’t live in Scotland but reside in England the country we’re trying to break free from

      It funny how many arguments are caused even within households by people who don’t live in the house, somebody’s granny or sister or brother interfering in things that should be none of their business, I’m reminded of that similarity because the UK is always very keen to remind us that we’re a family of Nations and just like my in laws they can’t keep their big mouths to themselves in order to cause bother in ma hoose

      Like I always advise anybody in ma hoose, stop listening to other people who don’t live in the hoose, so maybe our politicians could do the same, why on earth do we bother interacting with the British media at all, we know every word they’re going to say, we know every argument they’re going to present, and the thing we know most of all is they don’t and won’t listen to our answers because their job is to cause trouble so why co-operate with their agenda at all

      Support for Independence in Wales is now more than when Scotland first decided to have a referendum on Independence, if memory serves we began at around 28% in the polls, Wales are at around 33% but do we see the British media hounding Wales in panic
      Northern Ireland has the option to vote on their destiny too and it looks very much like when they do they’re going to grab it with both hands yet the British media aren’t hounding them either, so why is it Scotland should be asking itself are the British media so panicky about Scotland taking our Independence but much less concerned about our friends in Wales and Northern Ireland

      That’s right, you know the answer to that one, we’re vermin according to PM Johnson but he loves us, devolution was the biggest mistake Tony Blair ever made, but he loves us, devolution’s been a disaster, but he loves us, devolution must be undone says Jacob Rees Mogg, but he loves us too, we know Scotland voted to remain in the EU but the *British* people have spoken, they tell us

      Sometimes Scots are British, sometimes Scots are part of *the country* sometimes Scotland belongs to the *one nation*, but only if we can be dominated in that position, if we say we just want to be Scotland well that’s just not going to be tolerated at all
      Because they love us so much they just can’t let us go, as long as they can domestically abuse us and we cannae call the Polis

      But we can vote, bye bye XX, those aren’t kisses btw

  37. Petra says:

    Another great article Paul but as everyone on here has said already take it easy and focus on getting yourself better 😊.

    Well worth listening to. Aamer Anwar getting into the Tory and Gordon Broon’s ribs.

    ‘Aamer Anwar – Scathing takedown of ‘The Union’. Address to pre SNP Conference event by Aberdeen Independence Movement.


    Avoiding England at all costs. Sounds good to me 😀.

    ‘Businesses can show ‘Dunkirk spirit’ by taking new direct ferry to France.’

  38. Petra says:

    ‘Scotland has got what it takes to be an independent country.’


    You tell them Kate 😀.

    Yes@YesScot:- ”🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Scotland has the talent, the resources and the creativity we need to make the most of our economic potential. But we also need the powers to invest in our economy and make that potential a reality.

  39. Petra says:

    Poor wee Scotland, eh, 😎? This is a keeper.

    Yes @YesScot:- ”🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 With our big economy, highly educated population and cutting-edge innovation, Scotland has got what it takes to thrive as an independent country.

    🗳 Next year’s election will be the most important in Scotland’s history. Let’s put Scotland’s future in Scotland’s hands. #SNP20. ”


    Richard Murphy mentions Kosova in his article, however 12 years after it’s declaration of independence (2020) from Serbia on 17 February 2008, 98 out of 193 United Nations member states recognise the Republic of Kosovo and within the European Union, it is recognised by 22 of 27 members. Worth considering, imo.

    ‘Scotland is leaving the UK whatever Rees-Mogg thinks.’

  40. Petra says:

    The SNP @theSNP:- ”🗓 2020 has been an unprecedented year, but it also brought out the best in us.💛 We owe thanks to those who’ve kept us safe and to each other, for protecting our NHS and saving lives. 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Now it’s up to us to build the vision of a better future for Scotland. Welcome to #SNP20.


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

  41. Petra says:

    ‘Former chief Labour adviser declares support for Scottish independence.’

    ”One of Donald Dewar’s key advisers has come out in support of independence.”..

    ..”The news will be a blow to Labour. Maclennan was a central policy figure in the early days of devolution, advising Dewar, Henry McLeish and Jack McConnell. Writing in the paper, he said the “best first constitutional move in a very uncertain world is to seek Scottish independence”.”..


    ‘Nicola Sturgeon says Boris Johnson should not stand in the way of ‘people choosing their future’.’

    ..”Ms Sturgeon told the BBC’s Andrew Marr programme that she took instruction from the people of Scotland not from the prime minister.

    She added: “I’m going to do the old fashioned, traditional, democratic thing and ask the people of Scotland in May for their authority for a legal referendum to allow the people of Scotland to choose their own future.

    “It is not for Boris Johnson to stand in the way of people choosing their future”. She added: “I’m a democrat”.”..

  42. Dr Jim says:

    “A specific iron clad commitment to a referendum”

    Keith Brown MSP

  43. Happy St Andrew’s Day, Duggers.
    If they think that this is the last year we celebrate being Free Scots, then they have another think coming.
    They intend to surround Scotland with barbed wire on the First of January, and stop us moving about our continent Europe by force of English Homeland Security Border patrols.
    We are not an English colony.
    All those who declare that they are British, can migrate back to the Mother Ship, they won’t be missed.

    WE can wait no longer. Let’s just do it.

  44. I’m struggling to feel tired enough to sleep…so scrolling the Dead Tree Scrolls.
    Richard Leonard has confirmed what I already knew.. without permission he used photographs of a Glasgow Food kitchen to blame the SNP for the Westminster inflicted decade of austerity cuts and benefit caps. He is a base human being, whom the non political charity has rightly called out for using their group for his grubby little political smear on our Scottish Government..

    He is the lowest of the low for this. It is the Brits who are starving 320,000 Scottish children and have plunged half a million Scots into below the breadline penury and poverty.
    Labour is now dead and buried Up Here.
    It may be argued that they are the disgusting dregs of humanity, resorting to using images of Scots like this.
    I will never vote Labour again, even post Independence.

    Kevin McKenna, what say you ?
    I note from his latest scribbles that he seems to have morphed in to a born again Labour man?

    I note most of the Scottish Labour carperbaggers are standing down next May.

    Jumping before they are booted out on their useless arses by the citizens of Scotland?
    Richard Leonard should resign in shame.
    He is without doubt the most abject ‘leader’ of the Northern Branch office in 21 years.
    Yet the Shop Stewards keep him in place.

  45. Petra says:

    Yeah Happy St Andrew’s Day to all. Let’s hope that it’s the last one as part of this dysfunctional Union 😎.

    The SNP @theSNP:- ”This year’s is an SNP Conference like no other. Here’s Part 1 of #SNP20 Condensed: Day One. Welcome from @NicolaSturgeon

    Free school meals for all primary school pupils – all year round
    Winning voters over to Yes
    The value of our NHS
    Scotland’s green recovery.


    Joanna Cherry QC:- ”Thread of my short #SNP20 speech – The British Government are pressing ahead with their constitutional priorities regardless of the current pandemic. Brexit has happened and our parliament is under attack.”

  46. Petra says:

    ‘SNP vote surges in two Perth by-elections.’


    And, eh, note how often Alex blinks 😀.

    ‘Salmond: ‘Referendum is once in a generation opportunity.’

    • Dr Jim says:

      The FM was seen to blink several times today during the Corona update and I was *shocked*! shocked I tell you, how long can this FM keep blinking her eyes, tens of people will have noticed this and it is a clear and obvious sign of evilness by the FM, indeed the clinical director Jason Leitch was also seen to be blinking so the evilness is spreading, worst of all was the health Minister Jean Freeman who was not only blinking but also rolling her rrrrrs, another trait of the devil worshiper

  47. Petra says:

    ‘Guide to Scottish National Party splits and factions.’


    ‘Red Andy Marr – A Studiously Impartial Unionist BBC Presenter and Skirt Chaser (and liar).’

  48. Petra says:

    ‘BLOG: Discharging patients from hospitals to care homes.’

    ..”In the majority of situations a patient who has had Covid19 would have two negative tests before discharge from hospital. There are situations however where this may simply not be possible. For example, it is well established that some patients continue shed viral fragments and to give positive test results for COVID-19 virus for months and long after they cease to be infectious to others. Patients may refuse consent, or lack capacity to give consent to a test. Anyone who has had a swab taken for a COVID-19 test will know how that it is unpleasant. For some vulnerable patients, carrying out this invasive procedure might cause enormous distress and actually be very difficult to conduct. Should this then mean that a patient is denied return to what is essentially their home?”..


    Check out Ann’s links on the Indyref2 site.

  49. Petra says:

    Imagine that! It’s not true after all and yet we’ve had so-called Independence supporters ”elsewhere” making a meal of this issue and blaming Nicola Sturgeon as per usual. High time that the more intelligent and half-decent posters from ”elsewhere” woke up to the reality of what’s actually going on there and put a stop to the Bam from Bath, England, gaslighting them. And by the way Joanna Cherry has had a few weeks now herself to put a stop to the lies, gossip and innuendo that’s been circulating online about this. I’m just wondering why she hasn’t done so before now?

    Joanna Cherry:- ”In today’s @thetimesscot interview with me there is a significant error in re the attempt by a small group on SNP NEC to deselect me as an MP last September. I was grateful to @NicolaSturgeon at the time for stepping in to prevent this. She acted appropriately. The issue regarding my being prevented from joining the meeting by phone link was down to a staff member at HQ not the FM. @thetimesscot have been contacted to correct this substantial error which is theirs not mine.”


    ‘SNP president: Michael Russell the favourite as contest concludes.’

  50. Welsh Siôn says:

    Dydd Sant Andreas Hapus / Happy St Andrew’s Day (to all who wish to be associated with me.)

    FM’s card on my desk as I tap into the ether.


  51. Republicofscotland says:

    This is an eye opening article from Martin Keating in the National.

    A snippet.

    “A section 30 order has already been refused three times, by Theresa May, a written response from Boris Johnson, and in a letter from Scottish Secretary Alister Jack.”

    The article includes important info on the Continuity bill.

    • Legerwood says:

      Here is an archived link which will allow you to read the full article.

    • Golfnut says:

      Keating is becoming a real pain in the arse.

      • Republicofscotland says:

        On the contrary Keating is doing what Sturgeon should’ve been doing.

        • Bob Lamont says:

          Your spell-checker omitted the “I believe” segment again… 🙄

          • Republicofscotland says:


            We could’ve known the answer to this very important question sooner, if the Scottish government had pursued it, my belief in who or what is irrelevant.

            • Bob Lamont says:

              Unfortunately you have it bass-ackward, had you or anyone else known so would those opposed to Indy and the existing strategy would potentially unravel.
              SNP are being advised by some of the most distinguished legal minds available, there is reason behind what they have done and what they do, but you would be happier were they to reveal their hand. Really ?
              When you cannot break an army, seed suspicion, intrigue, conspiracy theories, doubt, anything which may fracture resolve and break ranks, its a game London have played many times.
              Perhaps that makes my “I believe” comment clearer.

              • Republicofscotland says:


                The chief legal advisor to the SNP is the Lord Advocate, from what I’ve read he even sits in on cabinet meetings, but he’s also the chief of prosecutions in Scotland which puts him in a tricky position (I’m being polite about his position) with regard to the inquiry.

                But I digress, the Scottish government should’ve answered this question years ago when Theresa May said now is not the time

        • Golfnut says:

          Actually the FM is doing exact what she should be doing, by the way she has repeatedly used the word legal, just not in the way westminster understands, or indeed yourself and Keating, what she is referring to.

        • grizebard says:

          Like comedy, it’s all a question of timing.

          Which good comedians well understand. On the other hand, there is you…

  52. jfngw says:

    Seems in the UK to be classed as a titan of industry, an entrepreneurial giant and receive a knighthood all you need to be is either an asset stripper, a purveyor of cheap copied tat of others ideas or a merely a self publicist. I have three people in mind, I bet you could name them (none of them are Scottish but we do have our own knee benders if you want to fish them out).

  53. Tatu3 says:

    I am not an anti-vaccine person. But I do worry about how quickly these covid vaccines have been rushed through.
    So it is very worrying when even nhs (england) staff are reluctant to have the vaccine!

    “Health chiefs are particularly worried about the number of people who are still undecided, and about vaccine scepticism among NHS staff.”
    “The NHS and Public Health England are also drawing up parallel plans to convince the health service’s 1.4m-strong workforce in England to get vaccinated amid signs that a significant proportion may shun it.”

    Like the rest of us they are worried about it’s safety and side effects! Do they really think having the likes of Prince William standing up telling us it’s all going to be fine, that we will all be queuing up like sheep for the jab?? Don’t think so

    • Petra says:

      The Royal Family keep telling us that they ”stand ready to play their part.” What about them playing their part by lining up and being used as guinea pigs?

    • Alex Clark says:

      Lack of trust in the UK government plays a big part in people’s apprehension about a new vaccine that has been “fast-tracked” and is being pushed strongly by the government.

      I’ll only start to even consider being vaccinated with this new vaccine once it has been approved by the European Medicines Agency as well as the UK.

  54. Dr Jim says:

    When you consider the ££millions that have been thrown at the scientific community around the world where every asset in the world has been working non stop on one particular vaccine for one particular disease it really isn’t rushed at all, it really was just a case of millions of hands make light work plus the finance and will to do it, if this had been just some ordinary infection that petered out by itself or was contained to one area the world wouldn’t have chucked so much money and resources at it, but when the protection of the economy of the world is at stake money will always be found to pay for that

    According to most countries statistics there are less than 30% who are undecided about the efficacy of the vaccines and whether to take them or not

    • Alex Clark says:

      Dr Jim, the vaccines are not the same. They all aim to do the same job but are very different in how they are produced and in how they tackle the virus.

      Of the three vaccines announced so far that are seeking approval, the Oxford vaccine can be kept in a normal fridge, Moderna’s in more or less a normal freezer at a temperature of -20C, the Pfizer vaccine has to be stored between -70 and -80C.

      The Oxford vaccine is a more traditional type of vaccine than the other two which have been produced using a completely new technique and has never been used before now.

      Google mRNA vaccines and there are links to Pfizer and other sites describing how they are believed to work. I will take a vaccine against this virus once I’m convinced it’s safe.

      Every year I get the flu jab, I worked overseas for years and regularly had to be vaccinated for some exotic diseases more prevalent in some countries, I have nothing against vaccines and want a vaccine to be successful against Covid of course. I’m just not happy with how it’s being pushed by this government and the speed of its development.

      How many elderly people, people with other conditions, children, or pregnant women were involved in these trials? Was it enough to be certain that these groups of people can safely take the vaccine? These are questions that the regulators need to be asking.

      I hope that the regulators are allowed freely to do their jobs, if further trials are necessary then that is unavoidable, I fear though that political pressure from the UK government may be applied to the regulator to get these vaccines approved quickly.

      • Dr Jim says:

        Alex the flu vaccine we received this year was different to the one we got last year because the strains change sometimes unpredictably, sometimes not, but overall most flu vaccines accomplish the same thing, a majority immunity for a majority of different strains, the various Covid vaccines are built on the same principle, some will be slightly more effective than another until over time the most effective vaccine will become the norm unless the virus mutates more than is expected, but the base science will be the same and like the various flu vaccines we receive it’ll be modified to suit new conditions

        Covid 19 will unfortunately not go away, it’s more likely that we will be living with it for a very long time but endemically rather than the current pandemic so we’ll most probably undergo a similar yearly or possibly two yearly booster just like the flu jag and if or when new strains are discovered the base will be modified to counter that, well that’s generally how they go about it

        I’m not the kind of doctor with access to drugs I’m the other kind so I’m paraphrasing Jason Leitch and the WHO’s opinion on the future of how it’ll work, whether it does or not will remain to be seen but when the entirety of the world’s clever clogs in that area are on it I feel pretty confident we’ll be OK

        Wee emoji thing with crossed fingers

  55. vivianoblivian7 says:

    Latest YouGov Westminster voting intention, Scottish sub-sample (field work 26 to 27th Nov) : Con 19%, Lab 15%, LibDem 4%, SNP 55%.
    Just a sub-sample, more pertinently an update on the last 8 sub-sample composite, (sample size 1,100) rolling average with trend : Con 19.5% down, Lab 16.1% down, LibDem 4.6% level, SNP 52.4% up.

  56. Welsh Siôn says:

    What’s the difference between Netflix and the Prime Malingerer?

    One pushes out pap and lies. It’s called The Crown.
    The other pushes out pap and lies. It’s called The Clown.

  57. Welsh Siôn says:


    Can you guess who says this in an interview printed this week?

    “The BBC differ from Facebook and Twitter in that we don’t tell you a madcap theory, or what we’re paid to think. Our job is to het as close to the truth as we can.”


    “We all have our views, but when you take a job at the BBC, you leave all that at the door. I’m not paid to tell you my opinions. It’s simple – if you want to tell people what you think, get another job.”


    Answer later – but there should be enough clues in those two quotations to help you! 🙂

    • Capella says:

      I can’t believe anybody in the BBC said that. Certainly not with a straight face. Nice try. 🙂

    • Alex Clark says:

      A quiz eh! I’m in, I’ll guess Andrew Marr.

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      The answer will be found on the last page of this week’s Radio Times.

      Apologies to those of you who guessed AM. (I should have known you’d pick a Scot). However, unless you cheat, I’ll tell you the game is still alive. 🙂

      • Welsh Siôn says:

        * het ( = get) in the first one, btw.

        • Glenn Campbell….no Hon Sarah Smith ,no wait , maybe Brian Taylor, or
          Gordon Brewer
          Andrew Kerr
          Glenn Campbell
          Sally Magnusson
          Douglas Fraser
          John McKay
          Colin Mackay
          David Henderson
          Andrew Kerr
          The Hon Sarah Smith
          Gary Robertson
          Hayley Millar
          Gillian Marles
          Martin Geissler
          Ken MacQuarrie
          Donalda MacKinnon
          Tom Harris
          Magnus Linklater
          Catriona Shearer
          Sally McNair
          Andrew Marr
          Alex Massie
          Severin Carrell
          Tom Gordon
          Paul Hutcheon
          Andrew Neil
          Kirsty Wark
          Laura Kuennsberg
          Paris Gouteratis
          David Clegg
          Iain Macwhirter
          Alison Rowat
          Alan Cochrane

          Some’ retired’, but never forgiven.

          “Oh, would or had I seen the day
          That treason thus could sell us!
          My auld grey head had lien in clay,
          Wi’ Bruce and loyal Wallace!
          But, pith and power, till my last hour,
          I’ll make this declaration:
          We were bought and sold for English gold!
          Sic a parcel of rogues in a nation. “

          • Alex Clark says:

            Yep, all of the above! Nice one 🙂

          • Petra says:

            Teacher, teacher Jack Collatin’s cheating 😲.

          • grizebard says:

            Far be it for me to defend any of that sorry shower, Jack, but Sevvy there from the Grauniad is a (Northern-ish?) Englishman, so whatever his other faults, he can’t be accused of treason. (Why the Graun ever chose to foist the neo-colonial partisan Labourite upon us in the first place is some other kind of crime, I suppose.) You omit wee Libby, of course, but perhaps like me I suppose you still harbour some hopes for her after we break the shackles and Sevvy finds something better to do with his life.

            • The list, as they say, is not exhaustive, grizebard.

              The six o’clock news tonight had a snippet of NS’ speech, voiced over by the Hon Sarah Smith third last on the teatime bulletin, just before some celebrity called Rita Ora who apparently made an error of judgement by going to a London restaurant with 30 of her Hangers On to celebrate her birthday and was promptly huckled by the Polis, and the ‘and finally’ animal closer about Jock beavers released in Somerset are now building dams…

              We really are equals aren’t we?
              The Hon Sarah Smith edited out NS demand that ‘Boris Johnson’ should not tax the £500 thank you to Scots Health and Care staff.

              The Hon Sarah Smith is ‘Political Editor BBC Scotland’….

              The Distorting Scotland 6.30 bulletin relegated any mention of NS speech to third place, which explains the Hon Sarah Smith’s editorial bias, non?

              St Andrew’s Day and it passes almost without comment in the Dead Tree Scrolls and the Brit Broadcasters offerings.

              Not much longer, mes braves.
              What will this lot do to earn a crust come Independence?

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      I’m *so* sorry to disappoint everyone so far …. But I thought my little aside should have helped you further.

      This is NOT a Scot.


    • Golfnut says:

      ‘ our job is to get as close to the truth as possible ‘ he,he,he.
      ‘ but when you take a job at the bbc, you leave all that the door ‘, we know what you leave at the doir, truth honesty, integrity, scruples and impartiality.

      My guess is Keunsberg.

  58. Capella says:

    Happy St Andrews Day everybody. I have spent much of it so far watching the SNP conference . I thought there were a lot of strong speeches there and Nicola Sturgeon was particularly good.

    Will pop over to check the verdict on Whinge over Scotland just for fun. They will have had their blinkometers at the ready.

    Hope everyone is having a good day, specially Paul.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Wear glasses Capella, protect your eyes

    • Petra says:

      Be careful that they don’t see you Capella blinking away from behind the net curtains 😀.

    • Capella says:

      @ Dr Jim @ Petra – I’ll wear my react-to-lights. If there’s the merest shard of light they will darken. But it’s unlikely. (I haven’t summoned up the will yet!)

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      Be careful of TRUE snakes in the grass, Capella … 😉

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Happy St. Andrews Day.

      A bit of a nerve-wracking day to be honest, with the different factions wanting different things, but from the reactions of posters I know the style of, genuine ones not the fakey ones, Sturgeon’s speech was word perfect. Some surprises for me at those who liked it, and perhaps I’m not the only DA around keeping the pressure on.

      Now that’s over, next step is Russell (Obi-Wan) and the EC with the question, then the introduction of the draft short bill with that question and presumably, date, before mid-March all things being equal. Text of speech here:

      • grizebard says:

        Alas, that article is behind a pay wall. I know the paper has to pay its way, but you might have thought that any supporter of independence would have been willing to make that particular one available to the widest possible public attention.

        • Welsh Siôn says:

          I have linked the speech from youtube, grizebard. It’s downstream here somewhere.

          If it’s the wrong one – apologies. aybe you can find the right one.

          • Welsh Siôn says:


            Hey, whatdoyouknow?

            I went on the National site (no paywall) and found this for you:


            FIRST Minister Nicola Sturgeon addressed the SNP’s virtual conference on Monday, telling delegates that independence was “not a distraction from the task of post Covid reconstruction” but “essential to getting it right.”

            Read her speech in full below


            A very happy St Andrew’s Day to all of you.

            Scotland shares our patron saint with countries like Greece and Romania.

            Others, like Poland, hold festivals and celebrations in his name.

            That is a small but timely reminder of our interconnectedness and shared humanity.

            These connections run deep in the ethos of our party.

            The SNP is the party of independence.

            We want Scotland to take her place as an equal, independent country.

            To be in the global family of nations, playing our part in building a better world.

            Our vision is open, internationalist and outward looking.

            These values should never be taken for granted.

            The last few years have shown us that.

            Across the Atlantic, the tide may be turning again in their favour.

            But here in the UK, the threat of Brexit looms.

            In just a month’s time, Scotland will be forced – against our will – into a much more distant relationship with our friends across the European Union.

            So, before we go any further, I want to send this message to our European friends and neighbours.

            You are – and always will be – part of who we are.

            You are not distant to us.

            To those of you who have come from other countries to live here in ours, thank you.

            Please stay.

            And to the other countries of the EU, Scotland wants to return.

            And we hope to do so soon, as an independent member state.

            Of course, this year, we’ve faced an even bigger threat to the ties that bind us.

            Covid has turned our way of life upside down. It has shaken us to our core.

            Recently, I came across a photo taken just after my speech to conference last autumn.

            The auditorium was packed and the photo shows me hugging an elderly lady at the side of the stage.

            When I look at it now – normal human connection in the midst of a crowded event – it’s like viewing a different world.

            A bygone age.

            That’s the cruelty of Covid.

            It has turned those cherished connections between people and countries into our biggest vulnerability.

            Borders have been closed, travel restricted, and we’ve been forced to live most of this year apart from our nearest and dearest.

            This has been, and still is, the toughest of times.

            The challenges we’ve faced, and the sacrifices we’ve all been asked to make, would have been unthinkable this time last year.

            If you feel utterly exhausted by it all, believe me, you’re not alone.

            Politicians usually run a mile from admitting human frailty.

            But these aren’t normal times.

            I don’t mind saying that these last 9 months have been the hardest of my life.

            I’ve had many dark days and sleepless nights, struggling with the horrendous choices the pandemic has forced upon us.

            At times I’ve felt completely overwhelmed – as I’m sure many of you have.

            And I feel a deep sadness for the lives that have been lost.

            Not a single day passes that I don’t think of families who are grieving.

            Like governments everywhere, ours has had to wrestle with almost impossible decisions.

            Every action necessary to reduce the harm of the virus and save lives, puts jobs and businesses on the line and causes suffering in so many other ways.

            But without those necessary measures, more lives will be lost.

            I’ve done my best to get these decisions as right as I can.

            And I’ve had the support of an outstanding team of ministers and advisers.

            I can never thank them enough.

            But I know we’ve made mistakes.

            And the responsibility for that is mine and mine alone.

            I feel it deeply, and I always will.

            But I feel immense gratitude, too.

            I want to thank everyone across the country for bearing the sacrifices asked of you with such strength and patience, and for the love and care you have shown each other.

            I pay particular tribute to our incredible NHS staff, our social care workers, our police officers and teachers and every public servant and key worker who has contributed so much to helping us through.

            And now, as well as gratitude – and for the first time in what feels like forever – I also feel a sense of hope.

            There is light at the end of the tunnel.

            Over the tough winter months that still lie ahead, there will be times when we struggle to see the light.

            But it’s there and it’s getting brighter.

            We are going to come through this.

            We’ll pull through by continuing to love, care for and protect each other.

            And by placing our faith in the astonishing efforts of those in the global scientific and health community who are working so hard to produce vaccines and treatments.

            And when we do come through – as we will – we’ll put our shoulders to the wheel to build a better Scotland.

            We are living through the crisis together. Every one of us is struggling.

            But it would be wrong to pretend we’ve all been affected equally.

            Many will be desperate to get back to the way things were because life was good.

            But others will be desperate not go to back to the way things were because life was much more difficult than it should be.

            The pandemic has highlighted and deepened inequalities that have existed in our country for generations.

            And, in so doing, it has laid down a challenge.

            The challenge of no longer accepting problems as inevitable or insoluble.

            This must be a moment – if I can paraphrase the late Bobby Kennedy – not to look at the challenges our country faces and ask why.

            But to imagine instead how we overcome these challenges and ask why not?

            Covid has caused incalculable grief and suffering.

            But just maybe we can draw something of value from it too.

            A determination to never again take for granted something as simple as giving another person a hug.

            And a renewed belief that what we once thought impossible, can be done if we put our minds to it.

            In the face of crisis, we’ve shown that.

            We created new domestic supply lines for PPE.

            Within days, whole new systems were built to deliver support to the vulnerable.

            Rough sleepers were given homes.

            Armies of volunteers sprung into action.

            And in a matter of weeks, a brand new hospital was ready to open its doors.

            As we emerge from crisis, we must harness that same can-do spirit.

            Things may have come apart this year, all over the world.

            But we have an opportunity now to put them back together in a better way.

            We are a country of more than five million individuals, with different preferences, hopes and dreams, but we share common aspirations.

            Fulfilling jobs, financial security, happy homes and healthy families, and a sense of optimism about the future.

            That’s what everyone in Scotland deserves.

            Our task, in the SNP, is to do all we can to help people fulfil those aspirations.

            As a party, we are stronger than we have ever been.

            I want to thank you, our members, for your hard work and commitment.

            You are the party.

            You shape it, and it’s down to your efforts that so many people now believe that independence is the best future for Scotland.

            But we must never forget this.

            We serve the people – they do not serve us.

            We earned the trust we enjoy today, by focussing on what matters.

            That’s what we must always do.

            That means protecting our NHS.

            Giving young people the best start in life.

            Creating jobs.

            Taking action every day to improve lives.

            And, yes, winning the powers that come with independence.

            So that, together, we can build the better, fairer Scotland we know is possible.

            The independence case is a powerful one.

            More and more people in Scotland are being persuaded by it.

            And I believe – passionately – that it is one with the power to unite.

            An independent country, where those of us who live here shape the future and work together to overcome our challenges, will be good for all of us.

            A country fairer and more equal than it is now will be good for all of us.

            An economy that provides greater job and income security will be good for all of us.

            A Scotland that is an equal partner with our friends in the rest of the UK and across Europe will be good for all of us.

            So as we set about the task of rebuilding our country, there’s a question that all of us in Scotland must ask ourselves.

            The answer to this question will define our country’s destiny and determine the life-chances of this and generations to come.

            Who do we want to be in the driving seat of shaping Scotland’s future?

            Should it be Scottish Governments – of whatever party – elected by the people of Scotland and with the priorities and interests of Scotland at heart?

            Or Westminster governments that time and again we have rejected?

            Will we, the people of Scotland, place trust in ourselves?

            Or will we leave our future in the hands of a Westminster system that is so clearly taking us in the wrong direction?

            You know, one of the arguments often used against independence is that in tough times we need the ‘broad shoulders’ of the UK.

            Well, right now, we are living through the toughest of times.

            The Scottish Government hasn’t got everything right – far from it.

            But I doubt there are many people in Scotland who would have wanted Westminster to be more in charge of our pandemic response.

            In the depth of crisis, we have looked to and trusted our own government and Parliament to steer us through.

            We should do the same now as we look to rebuild.

            Our opponents will argue independence is a distraction from that.

            They could not be more wrong.

            If we want to make sure the country we rebuild is the one we want it to be, with kindness, compassion, fairness, equality and enterprise at its heart…

            And not one built in the image of Boris Johnson and his band of Brexiteers…

            We must work to the right plan, with all the tools we need to do the job.

            Independence is not a distraction from the task of post Covid reconstruction.

            It is essential to getting it right.

            Of course, we won’t wait to be independent to start doing the right things now.

            I’m about to give you concrete examples of how, even in areas that are still substantially reserved to Westminster, the Scottish Government is nevertheless acting now to rebuild and renew.

            And as I do so, ask yourself this.

            If this is what we can do with limited powers, how much more could we achieve if we didn’t have one hand tied behind our backs?

            Take social security.

            The pandemic has reinforced as never before the necessity of strong social protection that will be there for all of us in times in need.

            For many people in Scotland the post-war welfare state has been a reason to support the union.

            But both the values and the practical measures that underpin that system are being dismantled by Westminster governments we don’t vote for.

            When the pandemic hit, the UK had one of the lowest levels of statutory sick pay in the whole of Europe.

            It still does.

            Brutal cuts to welfare have forced families into poverty and taken hundreds, even thousands of pounds a year out of the pockets of those who can least afford it.

            Westminster has given us the bedroom tax, benefit sanctions, the two child cap and the abhorrent rape clause.

            And their rhetoric has sought to divide and stigmatise.

            We take a different approach.

            On Saturday, John Swinney made the truly landmark commitment that if we are re-elected in May, lunches and breakfasts will be available free of charge all year round for every primary school child in Scotland.

            This – alongside the baby box and the doubling of early years education – is part of our commitment to making Scotland the best place in the world to grow up.

            At the heart of that commitment, is the new Scottish Child Payment.

            We will shortly become the only part of the UK to give low income families an extra £10 per week for every child – initially for children up to age 6 and then for every child up to age 16.

            This has been described as a game changer in the fight to end child poverty.

            The first payments will be made in February.

            But I know that for families struggling now, February is still a long way off.

            So I am announcing today a £100 million package to bridge that gap, and help others struggling most with the impact of Covid over the winter months.

            It will include money to help people pay their fuel bills and make sure children don’t go hungry.

            It will offer additional help for the homeless, and fund an initiative to get older people online and connected.

            And, most importantly of all, it will provide a cash grant of £100 for every family with children in receipt of free school meals.

            The money will be paid before Christmas and families can use it for whatever will help them through the winter.

            That could be food, new shoes or a winter coat for the kids.

            Families will know best what they need.

            That’s not for government to decide.

            Initiatives like this are not just about providing practical help to those who need it most.

            They are an expression of our values and of the kind of country we are seeking to build.

            A more equal Scotland where we look out for each other in a spirit of solidarity and compassion.

            So as we rebuild our country, let us ask this.

            Who do we want to be in charge of our social security system?

            Scottish Governments elected by you – with your priorities at heart – or Westminster governments that have to be shamed into feeding hungry children?

            The pandemic has forced all governments to take decisions we could never have imagined just a year ago.

            The restrictions we’ve had to put in place are essential to reduce stop the virus spreading.

            To stop people getting ill and needing hospital care.

            And to save lives.

            But we know they’re having a huge impact on businesses and jobs.

            The most effective way to support jobs is to control the virus.

            It’s the only sustainable way to bring back the consumer and business confidence that will drive the economy forward.

            But there is real hardship today, and it is heart-breaking to see.

            We have already put in place a package of business support worth around £2.4 billion.

            And with optimism about vaccines now growing, I promise we will continue to do everything we can to help business through.

            For young people, in particular, the impact has been severe.

            Their school, college and university experiences have been disrupted.

            But the sense of hope that comes with being young – if I can remember that far back – is precious.

            So we must help this generation of young people caught so cruelly in the eye of the Covid storm.

            To do that we’ve established the Young Person’s Guarantee.

            It aims to give everyone aged 16-24 the guarantee of work, education or training.

            And, today, as part of that commitment, I can announce new support for apprenticeships.

            Our Pathway to Apprenticeships programme will provide work-based training and a £100 a week allowance for school leavers up to age 18.

            It will start by helping 1,200 young people gain key skills in sectors like construction, business, IT, engineering and early years.

            We will also invest £15 million to help more employers take on an apprentice.

            Businesses want to give young people opportunities, but for many the impact of the pandemic will make the costs too hard to meet.

            So we’ll pay employers £5000 for every new modern apprentice they take on between the ages of 16 and 24.

            For apprentices who are care leavers, disabled or from minority ethnic communities, the £5000 grant will be available up to the age of 29.

            More generally, for every apprentice age 25 or over, we will pay employers a grant of £3,500.

            This investment will enable thousands more young people to secure an apprenticeship as they start their working lives.

            These are the kind of measures we are taking, working alongside business and trade unions, as part of a national mission to create jobs as we recover from Covid.

            And, of course, the economic recovery must be a green one.

            Our new Scottish National Investment Bank opened its doors last week and has the transition to net zero as its top mission.

            We’re investing heavily in heat and energy efficiency and supporting the creation of green jobs.

            We must not – and will not – waver from our commitment to a net zero society by 2045.

            And as Scotland prepares to host the global climate change talks in Glasgow next year, it is good to know that sitting around the table will be a new US government that shares that commitment.

            COVID has created a jobs crisis that none of us could have been foreseen.

            But we face another massive economic crisis which was foreseeable.

            It was also entirely avoidable.

            When the pandemic hit, we put campaigning for independence on hold.

            We had no choice. Our first and only responsibility as Scotland’s government was to steer the country through.

            But the UK Government refused to do the same with their disastrous Brexit plans

            Back in the summer we said they should wait.

            That the Brexit transition period must be extended.

            We produced detailed evidence of the hit to the economy that ending it in the middle of a global pandemic would cause.

            The Vote Leave gang ignored us.

            So, in just one month, on Hogmanay, we face a hard Brexit – with either no deal or a low deal.

            Scotland will be taken out of the European Single Market, which in population terms is seven times the size of the UK.

            We will be taken out of the EU Customs Union.

            And the Tories are already celebrating the end of freedom of movement.

            That would be huge, damaging change at the best of times.

            But in these most difficult of times it is unforgivable.

            The short-term damage of leaving the EU will be severe.

            But the long-term term impact will be worse.

            So, again, the question we must ask is this.

            Who do we trust to rebuild our economy for the future?

            A Scottish government elected by us, accountable, outward looking, internationalist, and with Scotland’s interests at heart?

            Or Boris Johnson’s band of Brexiteers?

            You know, the Tories haven’t won a general election in Scotland for 60 years.

            But that hasn’t stopped them imposing damaging policies on Scotland.

            Policies like Brexit, austerity, the rape clause, Trident nuclear weapons.

            Thankfully, the Scottish Parliament has offered protection in devolved areas like health, education and the environment.

            The Tories don’t like that.

            But they have a problem – they know they’re unlikely to win an election to the Scottish Parliament.

            So they’ve decided instead to undermine it and find another way to impose their agenda.

            Having – in their minds – taken control back from the EU they now want to take it back from Scotland too.

            Boris Johnson is using Brexit – which people in Scotland voted overwhelmingly against – to fundamentally undermine the Scottish Parliament – which people in Scotland voted overwhelmingly for.

            That’s turning democracy on its head.

            They’ve torn up the constitutional rule that stops them passing laws in devolved areas without the consent of Holyrood.

            They’ve imposed the EU Withdrawal Act which constrains the Scottish Parliament’s powers.

            They’ve even gone to court to strike down an act of the Scottish Parliament they didn’t like.

            And now they’ve opened a new front.

            The Internal Market Bill.

            This is – quite simply – a Trojan Horse that will allow Westminster to work its way into the very heart of the devolution settlement.

            I suppose the only thing I can say in their favour is that they are being perfectly open about all of this.

            They’re not trying to hide their intent.

            Here’s what one Tory said recently – “the Internal Market Bill is just the start. The UK Government is back in Scotland. Get used to it.”

            Charming bunch, aren’t they?

            Boris Johnson himself has called devolution a disaster.

            That was no slip of the tongue.

            From the perspective of Boris Johnson and those with his world view devolution has has been disastrous.

            Disastrous for them.

            It has loosened Westminster control.

            And given the people of Scotland a voice.

            And it’s meant Tory prime ministers having to pretend to listen to First Ministers like me.

            Believe me, they really, really don’t like that.

            But, to be serious, I know there are many people in Scotland who would prefer a stronger Scottish Parliament to independence.

            I respect that.

            But the hard truth is this.

            A stronger Scottish Parliament is not on offer from Westminster.

            Far from it. They intend to take away powers our Parliament already has.

            And we can’t say we haven’t been warned.

            Jacob Rees-Mogg – that shining advertisement for modern democracy…not – couldn’t have been clearer last week.

            He wants to “undo” devolution.

            So the choice for Scotland is pressing.

            Are we prepared to have the powers we voted for stripped away – at a time when we need them most?

            Are we prepared for our Scottish Parliament to be undermined and dragged down by Westminster?

            Or will we decide to make our Scottish Parliament independent?

            The answer to that question matters for many reasons.

            And the NHS is close to the top of the list.

            Health policy may be devolved, but the NHS faces Westminster threats.

            Trade deals could result in a big increase in the price our health service pays for drugs – reducing funds for patient care.

            And the end of freedom of movement with the EU is already making it much harder to attract the NHS and social care staff we need.

            The challenges facing our NHS are huge.

            Changing demographics meant that was true before Covid.

            But Covid has made it even more so.

            I can promise you today that the SNP will continue to provide record investment in the NHS.

            But nothing is more important to the health of our NHS than those who work in it.

            No matter how much technology we have, or how many new drugs are developed, it is the doctors and nurses, the clinical staff who support them, the porters, cleaners and admin staff that we depend on most.

            And that is true of social care workers too.

            When they care for our loved ones, they can almost become like part of our families.

            And without them, the NHS simply couldn’t do its job.

            So supporting our cherished NHS must always start with valuing those whose hard work and commitment make it what it is.

            Back in the spring, at the height of the first wave of Covid, many of us publicly – and often loudly – showed our appreciation for the work our NHS and social care staff were doing.

            People across many different occupations have been indispensable to the Covid response.

            But there was, and remains, a particular recognition of the incredible, often heroic, efforts of those who work in hospitals and other health and care settings.

            That is why many of us put rainbows in our windows and stood on our doorsteps to applaud them.

            The applause was important. But it was never enough.

            Our appreciation must be shown in a more tangible way.

            Now, as it happens, NHS staff in Scotland are already the best paid anywhere in the UK.

            And adult social care workers here are paid at least the Real Living Wage – a higher rate than many of their colleagues in England and Wales.

            We are also in the early stages of negotiating a new pay deal for NHS Agenda for Change staff.

            The UK government’s public sector pay policy will not make that task easy.

            But we will do our level best to give NHS staff the pay increase they deserve.

            However, that negotiation will take time to conclude.

            Those who have worked in our hospitals and care homes – caring for the sick and dying, at the sharpest end of the Covid trauma – deserve recognition now.

            So I can announce today that, on behalf of us all, the Scottish Government will give every full time NHS and adult social care worker £500 as a one-off thank you payment for their extraordinary service in this toughest of years.

            Those who work part time will get a proportionate share.

            The money will be paid in this financial year and it will be separate from any negotiations about pay for the longer term. There are no strings attached.

            Of course, a payment like this can never come close to expressing our full admiration for those who have cared for us so heroically.

            But to our health and care workers, it is a demonstration of what we collectively owe you – and a heartfelt thank you for the sacrifices you have made.

            The Scottish Government is choosing to do this now from our own resources.

            We are asking nothing of the UK government – with one exception.

            Because we don’t control the full tax and benefits system, we don’t have the power to make this payment tax free.

            But Prime Minister, you do.

            So I am asking you this:

            Please allow our health and care heroes to keep every penny of Scotland’s thank you to them.

            Do not take any of it away in tax.

            Across the range of public services we’ve demonstrated the value of taking decisions in Scotland.

            Our government has delivered the baby box – giving every child in Scotland the best start in life.

            Record numbers of students from the most deprived backgrounds are now winning a place at university.

            Council tax bills remain lower here.

            We’ve introduced a progressive income tax system and a fairer social security system.

            We’ve set up a brand new development bank.

            We’ve delivered nearly 100,000 affordable homes.

            And kept more than 1,000 extra officers on our streets.

            That’s a record to build on.

            Next May we will ask you, the people of Scotland, to put your trust in us to continue that task of building a better country.

            I will ask you to judge us on our record and endorse our plans for the future.

            And in that election, I will seek your authority – no-one else’s – for a legal independence referendum to be held in the early part of the new Parliament.

            And then, collectively, we can answer those fundamental questions I have posed today.

            Who is best placed to lead Scotland’s recovery and build a better future.

            Westminster governments we don’t vote for?

            Or independent Scottish Governments – of whatever party – chosen by us and with Scotland’s best interests at heart.

            As we look ahead, we should have every confidence in what is possible if we do take our future into our own hands.

            Far from being too wee, Scotland is the ideal size to succeed.

            Independent nations of similar size to us are amongst the wealthiest, fairest and happiest in Europe.

            If Denmark can be a successful independent country, why not Scotland?

            If Ireland can and Norway can, why not Scotland?

            We have the resources, the wealth and the talent.

            As an independent country we can decide how best to use all those resources, all that wealth and all that talent.

            We will be the decision-makers.

            Our relationship with our closest friends in the rest of the UK won’t come to an end.

            It will be a stronger and better one.

            Because it will be a partnership of equals.

            As equal partners we will co-operate and work together. We will learn from each other.

            But we in Scotland will be decision makers, able to chart our own course and build our own future.

            As an independent country, we can be bridge-builders too.

            A bridge between the UK and Europe.

            Helping to create economic opportunity, deepen understanding and bring people closer together.


            As you know, I’m a bit of a bookworm.

            The Turkish novelist, Elif Shafak, is one of my favourites.

            She wrote this about what it means to belong in many places at once:

            “A human being, every human being, is boundless and contains multitudes.”

            People in Scotland recognise that sentiment. We are a people comfortable with multiple identities.

            As an independent country, we can be decision-makers, partners, bridge-builders.

            • grizebard says:

              Obliged for that, WS. I believe that access depends on how many times you’ve looked up an article in the last month, or somesuch. I must have followed up too many links from here recently! {grin}

              (But my point wasn’t a personal plaint but rather a general one that some articles could be considered important enough to merit being unconditionally accessible, and this is surely one such.)

  59. Petra says:

    Oh well it seems that there’s something that Nicola Sturgeon isn’t guilty of. Surprise, surprise 🙄. Too bad Joanna didn’t nip that one in the bud earlier as it was circulating online.

    Joanna Cherry QC:- ”In today’s @thetimesscot interview with me there is a significant error in re the attempt by a small group on SNP NEC to deselect me as an MP last September. I was grateful to
    @NicolaSturgeon at the time for stepping in to prevent this.She acted appropriately. The issue regarding my being prevented from joining the meeting by phone link was down to a staff member at HQ not the FM. @thetimesscot have been contacted to correct this substantial error which is theirs not mine.”

    • Legerwood says:

      Pity indeed. It has certainly garnered lots of publicity so should have been aware of the ‘error’

  60. Welsh Siôn says:

    While you’re still getting your heads around my quotations – here’s something I prepared earlier.

    How many politicians from the SNP (past and present) can you find in my piece?

    Good luck!


    Porridge à la SNP

    (Scene: FLETCHER and new inmate, GODBER, are putting the world to rights inside their prison cell. FLETCHER, as the more worldly wise prisoner is educating GODBER as to life inside prison. Suddenly, there is a sound of hurried footsteps and a loud shout in a broad Scottish accent is heard.)

    GODBER: What was that?

    FLETCHER: That, my son, is the well-know Scottish screw: Prison Officer Mackay. An’ ol’ man Wilson who would Rob ‘is son given ‘arf the chance.

    GODBER: Mackay? Hosie?

    FLETCHER: Hosie? Who’s Mr Mackay? Gawd blimey, Godber. Don’t you know nuffink? He’s only the Chief Warden of this ‘ere nick.

    GODBER: What’s he like, Fletch?

    FLETCHER: A real Celtic nerk, Godber. A Mason, too. If you break the Law like we ‘as, ‘e’ll find hany way to Blacken your name.

    [GODBER nods.]

    FLETCHER: Not only is ‘e a nasty old scrote but he also guards the foodstuffs in the Prison Canteen. Makes sure that the Sturgeon and smoked Salmond is out of bounds for the likes of you and me. ‘E even ensures that ‘is fellow screws get first taste of the Robertson jam and the Campbell soup. Got a Jack Russell terrier, too. You might find it ‘ard to believe, but ‘e also ‘as a sister. Constance ‘er name is. Was taught by Miss Jean Brodie in her prime, they say. She’s a vicar, apparently. Likes to see her congregation Neil.

    GODBER: I wouldn’t know him from Adam – we haven’t met yet.

    FLETCHER: You will, my son. Mr Mackay always wears Brown shoes. A creature of ‘abit, Mr. Mackay likes his Coffey and Crawford’s biscuits, too. I’d dunk ‘im somew’ere an’ all!

    GODBER: Enough of Mr Mackay, Fletch! Come over here and watch the telly. Dallas is on!

    FLETCHER: No thanks, son. It’s full of that Ewing family. I’m Done for the Dey – so long as I get to see Match of the Dey: Ross County are playing.

    GODBER: Don’t be such a sourpuss, Fletch!

    FLETCHER: I’m not! And you should stop playing Billy the Kidd round ‘ere! If we weren’t in stir, I’d tell you to naff off, take Stevenson’s Rocket, sit at the Loch Head an’ leave me in peace! Or take your horse to the Smith to be shod!

    GODBER: [Trying to get back into FLETCHER’s good books and grinning] I could make you some Maxwell House, Fletch.

    FLETCHER: You’ve spoilt it now, you young nerk. All I want is a nice quiet Reid. Like those posh people do in those Oxford colleges – like Somerville, y’know?

    GODBER: Watt? You? Reid? [GODBER laughs]. That’s no White lie, Fletcher. That’s a damn big mucky Black one!

    FLETCHER: Careful, young Godber and hold your tongue! I was sent ‘ere for doing a Swinney Todd and I’m not above doing it again!

    GODBER [subdued]: That’s one thing I’ve learnt about you, you miserable old scrote, Fletch. You don’t Welsh on your promises.

    FLETCHER: Too right, Lenny. I don’t. Too damn right.

    GODBER: Sorry, Fletch.

    [GODBER looks down at his feet, sadly]

    FLETCHER: Why don’t you practice your athletics, like those other nerks on our Wing? You’re always on about the Decathlon like that Daley Thompson feller.

    GODBER: You’re right, Fletch. And I gotta beat those other Fellows in order to win that Ahmed the Sheikh’s prize. And then win my freedom!

    FLETCHER: Once you’re out of this nick, Godber, you’ll travel widely and be visit Newlands. I know you don’t think of me as being very religious, but I do believe that the Lord will be thy Sheppard. So, if you Wishart, cross the Whiteford and Weir in your canoe, I really think you can make it. Go for it, Len.

    GODBER: Gosh, thanks, Fletcher. I’m confident that I can become as famous as Lee Harvey Oswald!

    FLETCHER: Oh my Gawd! What do they teach in Birmingham’s schools these days?

    [FLETCHER lets his face fall heavily into his open palm and he sighs deeply as in pain.]

  61. Capella says:

    @ Welsh Sion – that’s too difficult for this late on a Monday afternoon.

    Was the quote from John Cleese in a Monty Python sketch satirising the BBC? or from Spitting Image?
    Is it Boris Johnston on “my true mission as a journalist”?
    Sir Robin Day? John Sargent? Jon Snow?
    Rupert Murdoch?
    Piers Morgan?

    I give in – I don’t know any others.

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      Capella – Feel free to cut and paste the ‘Porridge’ one and attack it later! I have no prizes to give out, though …

      As for those quotations: See Alex Clark @ 5.30pm.


      • Capella says:

        Well done Alex – Tory Nick it was. Well irony is alive and well and residing at the BBC as ever. 🙂

        • Welsh Siôn says:

          … and lack of self-awareness, too! 😉

          Back page of Radio Times if you wanna see ….

          • Capella says:

            The RADIO TIMES!! Is this still a thing in Wales? I haven’t seen a Radio Times for approx 40 years when I used to get the Christmas special so my daughter could keep up with the programming. (She was very small).

            • Welsh Siôn says:

              With some people, no doubt, Capella.

              Remember – I live in England! (The wife gets it for the articles and to catch up on The Archers. Yeah, I know. I play the dootiful hubby, dontcha know!)

            • jfngw says:

              The Radio Times is nothing to do with the BBC as far as I can tell now, it is owned by the German Hubert Burda Media Group. It uses the Immediate Media Company branding in the UK, probably to fool the BritNats it’s still British.

  62. By sheer chance I caught NS’ Conference speech via Jo Coburn’s Daily English Politics programme.

    Kuennsberg was on reminding us all that Boris will still say no, then hastily over to NS for a fairly solid troops rallying speech, which Neil Findlay and that Dick Leonard will pull to pieces no doubt. All that socialist nonsense about helping the poorest and banning Trident.

    After, with just a few seconds left, the soor faced Coburn rasped that Rishi Sunak had given Scotland £8.2 billion to fight Covid…she obviously believes the ‘too stupid’ framing of her Brit Nat mates colleagues and guests…Sunak borrowed the money, and we Scots will be paying it back, not England.

    She asked why not free breakfasts and dinners now, having doubtless been briefed by Dross or Baroness Davidson of Rape Clause to chuck that one in.

    It is beyond doubt now that through the Hon Sarah Smith Editor BBC Scotland (sic) and her Red Blue and Yellow Tory ‘chums’ briefings to the Mother Ship in the South, that even English based anchors, fed the line to take, make right fools of themselves like good little brain washed Brits.

    Can some tecchie produce a video of NS’ speech with the Bumbling Fool Johnson’s utterings from his Bunker in No 10 simultaneously.
    She did blink a few times right enough.

    She blinked so don’t listen to a word she says !
    Listen to me instead….aye, richt.

    God, there is no turning back now. Indyref 2 is coming down the track and they know it.
    We’re on our way, we’re on our way to happiness, oh yeah.

    May ’21 is in fact Indyref2.

  63. Petra says:

    Wonderful, don’t you think 😀, but by God Boris and the BritNats will be going crazy right now. And English ignoramuses will be apoplectic thinking of Baad Nic spending their money on the Scottish parasites. Add to that Nicola Sturgeon has publicly asked for it not to be taxed 😊.

    ‘Who’s eligible for Nicola Sturgeon’s £500 NHS and social care staff covid thank you payment.’

    ”EVERY full time NHS staff member and adult social care worker in Scotland is to receive a one-off £500 “thank you payment” for their work during the coronavirus pandemic.”..

  64. Capella says:

    Had a look at Whinge Over Scotland and it is as underwhelming as the host’s verdict on the conference. Their blinkometers appear to have run out of battery. Sad but inevitable – there is only so much mileage in blink rate.

    I will say no more in deference to Paul’s wishes.

    • Dr Jim says:

      The ego has blown it, the screamometer is going boing boing boing and lurched into asylum mode

      • Capella says:

        Houston we have a problem. 😦

      • jfngw says:

        There is going to be a lot of exploding heads if the current enquiry, for some reason being described the Ales Salmond Enquiry, if it doesn’t reach the conclusions they want. I’m not sure how it can as it is examining the Scottish government procedures, Alex Salmond is just coincidental, so unless someone documented ‘let’s get Salmond’ it is probably going nowhere.

        I suspect there will be lots of recommendations in a lengthy report, probably to follow ‘best practice’, it’s a great phrase normally used by managers to shut down any dissent, after all how can you say you object to best practice.

        It’s amusing those that don’t want independence unless we can guarantee political purity, no corruption, no self servers. They probably need to book a ticket to Shangri-La as the more powerful a parliament the more hangers on it attracts. Scotland will be no different, there is no pure political country, international politics is no polite parlour game.

        • Capella says:

          Indeed. Compare and contrast with the Westminster inquiry over Priti Patel’s bullying of civil servants. Swept under the carpet by Boris Johnston who is in sole charge of the procedure.

          Johnston lets Patel off on the grounds that nobody had drawn her bullying behaviour to her attention (!)

          The civil servant, who has resigned and claims constructive dismissal, says that he did warn her, several times, over a period.

          That didn’t come out in the inquiry, says Johnston. The chair of the inquiry, who has also resigned, says that he did want to speak to the civil servant but was warned off.

          But – hey – it’s the Scottish government, which set up a procedure for investigating complaints, not dependent on the favour of the FM, which is criticised.

        • Dr Jim says:

          Alex Salmond is merely the tool that the unionists and haters of the SNP are currently using to support their lying drivel, actually if they really cared about the former FM they’d keep their traps shut because they’re not making things better for him, if or when this does come out none of it will help Alex Salmond it’ll just expose him to even more intrusion

          If the FM really wanted Alex finished she could’ve done it in a sentence, with silence everybody remains protected, open that can and the worms will spew out all over the place, the Unionists win and Scotland’s people lose

    • Robert McCandless says:

      I think it’s more than Paul’s wishes that you say no more.

  65. Petra says:

    I’m just loving this. Yeehaw 🤣. Dame Mariot Leslie sorting Neil Oliver out. Dame Mariot Leslie, the UK’s permanent representative to NATO until 2014, from Edinburgh and an Independence supporter 😀.

    A health warning comes with this part. If you suffer from HBP reach for your tablets.

    and then …..

    Mariot Leslie’s response:- ”This conflates Britain with the UK, then turns up the emotional dial on behalf of the former, as an argument for sticking with the latter. I do understand and empathise with people who feel this way. 1/6

    We need to remind them that Britain will still be there when Scotland has reclaimed its sovereignty – the island, the light and weather patterns, the landscapes, the dialects, the music, the writing, the architectures and townscapes, the food and traditions and folklore. 2/6

    Scotland will still be in Britain. Communities, families and individuals on this island will still have parts of their collective history which is shared and parts of their individual history which is distinct and idiosyncratic. (Just as Brexit cannot stop me being European.) 3/6

    What will be gone is a political structure – the UK – which no longer commands the respect or willing consent of more than half of Neil Oliver’s fellow Scots, especially the younger ones. No state or kingdom is permanent, as Oliver acknowledges. 4/6

    I do not know if Scotland will be wise in its choices when we govern ourselves again. But I have good reason to hope that it will be better than what we have known in my lifetime. 5/6

    And England will be free at last to answer its own pressing questions about its identity, character and choices. It too will find that it lives on a shared British island, in a shared archipelago. I know that Scots will want to be good neighbours. 6/6”

    • Alex Clark says:

      Great response from Mariot Leslie to his unreadable essay all about his cringe.

    • Dr Jim says:

      I read the first four lines then burst out laughing at Oliver’s notion of having no Nationality while nailing himself to the invented British nationality then quoting a man who Oliver named as a Canadian, which is another nationality

      Spanner? screwdriver? certainly one of those pieces of equipment, TOOL! yes that’s the one

    • grizebard says:

      That riposte says it all really. Wonderful.

      Relations within these islands will be far more harmonious once we are all truly equals.

    • The North Atlantic
      Scotland Ireland Iceland Greenland Canada that’s about it
      The countries who’s coastline is on the edge of the North Atlantic

      I can’t ever see a country who’s coast is on the North Atlantic being refused entry to nato

  66. Alex Clark says:

    Johnson was on the BBC News channel earlier backtracking on when a vaccine for Covid might become available for use in the UK. Paraphrasing he said he “hoped it would be approved before Xmas”. This is a far cry from informing everyone that the NHS had been told to be ready to start administering vaccines next week.

    Maybe this regulator has a pair and won’t be pressured, at least I hope so.

    “Meanwhile, an internal NHS briefing paper shows that airline cabin crew, firefighters and the jobless are being targeted as part of a huge team of vaccinators being assembled, trained and paid £11.20 an hour to administer the jabs.

    Under the slogan “Your NHS needs you”, the recruitment campaign aimed at enlisting “tens of thousands” of extra staff will stress that vaccines “will be our best defence against the virus alongside effective social distancing, wearing a mask and washing your hands” and that vaccinators will be playing a vital role by immunising “millions of at-risk people”.

    • Dr Jim says:

      “Celebrities who have done sensible stuff during the pandemic”? I’m giggling but I’m not sure some of these *celebrities* will be delighted at the idea they might not always have been considered *sensible* before the pandemic

      These things he says should be called *Johnsonisms*

      I wonder who he’s thinking about when he says they’ll train the *jobless* to vaccinate people
      will that be Ivan the unemployed builder from Romania with hands like concrete slabs? I’m giggling again

  67. Petra says:

    ‘IN FULL: Nicola Sturgeon’s speech to SNP conference.’


    A wee letter from Wiltshire.

    ‘We need the Scots to save England from the Tories. That is the best argument against independence.’

    However, part of me realises how much the English would lose. During the Thatcher era, it was Scottish politicians in Westminster who played a major role in sustaining the opposition parties during those long years. I’m thinking of John Smith, Gordon Brown and Robin Cook, not to mention David Steel and Charles Kennedy. Sadly, today most of the Scottish political talent resides in the SNP. So we need the Scots to save England. That is the best argument against independence..”..

    • Dr Jim says:

      Well that person picked the right bunch there eh, John Smith Aye right we’ve still got his BBC British daughter
      Gordon Brown, Jeezus Joany don’t they know why his nickname is *crash*, Robin Cook Aargh! David Steel Aye own up and tell us who the perverts are, Charley Kennedy sorry folks he was never sober and he’d have been jottered from any other normal job in society, and of course every one of them was a British Nationalist

      A right bunch all of them, and that proves the case FOR Independence right there if the folk in England believe these were the good guys yet they still voted for even worse

      Sorry England yer on yer own

    • grizebard says:

      I wish people would wake up on both sides of the border and realise that in the crocked UK political system there’s not a thing that we Scots can do to help save our southern cousins from the Tories. It’s just one of the most pernicious Labourite fallacies.

      The only way we can save the English is independence. Then those who really can’t stand the way their country is heading can come north and help build a better country here. While the political ructions in England of losing their biggest home colony will create the biggest political shock that the country has seen in a long while and hopefully rebound with full force against the party that has visited this last in a series of disastrous blunders upon it.

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Labour saved no one. Thatcher hated the working class, she wrecked lives, plunged people into poverty and destitution and ruined communities. A fascist, all that Labour did was allow it to happen…Scotland is in no position to ‘save England’, England needs to save itself. And the ‘sadly’ re the SNP, how very arrogant when the ‘SNP’ are the choice of party to lead in Scotland, and voted for by the people of Scotland, many who are in fact English ex pats and who reject the disgraceful red Tories.
      Labour shafted Scotland big time for decades and especially in their ten whole yaers at Holyrood, (what did they do FOR Scotland then!) and still would, their PFI scams leaving our councils in £billions of debt etc and now their coalitions with the actual Tories in some of our Scottish councils, tells us all we need to know about their lies and duplicity. No thanks.

  68. Arthur Thomson says:

    That Nicola Sturgeon is at it again. She’s a blinking pest. Giving money to the plebs FFS. Doesn’t she realise that offends British values?

    There is no gain without pain and the plebs must be schooled to take the pain. Failure to embrace this is the fundamental flaw in Scottish education.

    Gaune yersel hen.

  69. Alex Clark says:

    This should be good for a laugh, there will be rebels on both sides now 🙂

    Labour to abstain in vote on Covid tiers

    • grizebard says:

      Well, Labour are nothing but true to form. They get voted in to WM to represent their constituents then do nowt but sit on their idle bums. The next-to-invisible party.

  70. Welsh Siôn says:

    Nicola Sturgeon’s speech at Conference this year (apologies for Guardian link)

    28 mins 41 secs.

  71. Dr Jim says:

    Congratulations to Michael Russell and the party, it was never in doubt

  72. “Because we don’t control the full tax and benefits system, we don’t have the power to make this payment tax free.

    But Prime Minister, you do.

    So I am asking you this:

    Please allow our health and care heroes to keep every penny of Scotland’s thank you to them.

    Do not take any of it away in tax.”
    The Hon Sarah Smith will be pleased…

    Dross the Linesman’s Party are going to tax the £500 thank you to our NHS / Care staff.

    Well done, Baroness Davidson of Rape Clause, B-Lister ‘Union’ Jack, Mundell the Michty, John Lamont, David Duguid, and Sub Lieutenant (RN Failed) Andrew Bowie…building back bitter?

  73. Kangaroo says:

    Well here we are 1st December 31days left and as expected the news from across the pond has overtaken the indy cause.
    1. Biden has approached Mitch McConell for immunity in exchange for conceding. The electoral fraud has caught them out.
    2. Obama charged too.
    (Story embargoed in the US)

    The Truth will set us a Free.

    • grizebard says:

      Oh dear, another helping of your signature nonsense. (Does anyone employ you to do this or are you just in need of serious help? What have we ever done to deserve this?)

      Truth? You wouldn’t know truth if it came right up to you with a neon sign flashing TRUTH in letters 2 metres high.

  74. Petra says:

    Another nail in the BritNats coffin.

    ‘Treasury rejects Nicola Sturgeon’s plea to make £500 Covid bonus for NHS staff tax free.’


    Plus full interview.

    Alex Salmond Show:- ”Former Scottish Parliament Presiding Officer, Sir George Reid, says that as an independent country, Scotland would be an equal partner that could agree common policies with the rest of the UK.”

  75. Petra says:

    That’s Gove telt 😀.

    The SNP:- ”🤷‍♂️ Michael Gove told the Scottish Government to stop standing up for Scotland’s place in Europe.”


    And that’s Westminster telt 😀.

    French Embassy UK:- ”France government account. Today we’re wishing all our followers in Flag of Scotland a very #HappyStAndrewsDay! Since 1295, Scotland and France have been close friends and we will continue to work together to strengthen these ties. #AuldAlliance.”

    • grizebard says:

      That’s about as overt a sign of support as any diplomatic entity could possibly offer. The writing is on the (international) wall for your dud Union, BritNats!

  76. Petra says:

    Garve Scott-Lodge:- ”I see unionists are using a Nicola Sturgeon quote to portray her as having a history of vaccine scepticism and promoting conspiracy theories. It’s a smear.”


    Losing protected status. Scottish salmon, lamb and beef etc, etc.

    Ron Culley:- ”Here are the casualties under the new UK/Japan Trade Deal. The state of things to come, ladies and gentlemen. We’ll all be drinking British Whisky and Scottish Single malts from Tennessee soon enough.”

  77. Petra says:

    Heading towards a wee, poor and stupid England.

    ‘Boris Johnson a ‘great recruiting agent’ for Scottish and Welsh independence, says Plaid leader.’

    “Let no-one be in any doubt that I (Adam Price) will lead a team and a party clear in its aims, united in its goal, committed to holding and winning an independence referendum as soon as we can.”


    Can anyone else see a great First Minister in the making?

    ‘Scottish budget should not be subject to the ‘disinterested whims of a distant Tory government.’,scottish-budget-should-not-be-subject-to-the-disinterested-whims-of-a-distant-tory-government

    • Arthur Thomson says:

      Yes Petra.

      A strong, intelligent and honest person. We are, unsurprisingly, truly fortunate to have people like her working for us.

      I saw Kate being interviewed on the Nine. Her control of her brief and her calm demeanour were clearly unsettling for her interrogator.

      She is certainly a great candidate for a future FM. One of many brilliant women we could turn to with absolute confidence if the need arose.

  78. Petra says:

    ‘5 things to know about post-Brexit aviation.’


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

  79. Republicofscotland says:

    A bit of sanity has prevailed over who’s in and who’s out with regards to the SNP’s NEC votes for candidates.

    • Capella says:

      Democracy has prevailed RoS. Democracy – remember that word? Will it stop the whining about the SNP over on the Other Place? Will it buckies.

      Here’s the full list from The National. Good to see Joanna Cherry and Neil Hanvey on the NEC. Alyn Smyth, Rhiannon Spear and Fiona Robertson are off. This represents a better balance of opinion from across the membership.

      • Republicofscotland says:


        Democracy only prevailed this time because many now ousted from the SNP NEC signed this vile letter, prior to this the NEC was packed with a faction with its own agenda, which didn’t include independence.

        The NEC has now as you say many independence minded folk on it, not because of Sturgeon’s actions but inspite of them.

        • Petra says:

          Give it a rest why don’t you. Here in Scotland we’ll get our house in order, as the political parties at Westminster carry on being corrupt to the point of being criminal. Why no focus on them? Nicola Sturgeon is one of the most honest, compassionate and hardworking politicians on the planet but for some reason or another someone wants rid of her. Westminster that is with the help of a multitude of BritNat lackeys.

        • Capella says:

          @ RoS – that is nonsense. I was a delegate at last year’s conference and voted for the NEC. Unfortunately, my preferred reps were not voted onto the NEC. But they did poll exceptionally well. This year they have succeeded. That’s democracy in action. Guess what – there’ll be another election next year.

          It has nothing to do with anyone other than SNP members turning up and voting for the candidates of their choice. Nicola Sturgeon does not control these elections.

  80. BBC Scotland’s St Andrew’s Day contribution? A documentary on Burns at 23.15 first broadcast 25th January 2009, and BBC Scotland (don’t laugh, back there) rerun of ‘A tribute’ to Sean Connery first broadcast in 2015.

    They haven’t even shown one of his movies.

    BBC, pack up, and head back to London.

  81. Welsh Siôn says:

    No, I didn’t see it myself, but this should appeal to at least the following usual suspects: Marconatrix and yesindyref2.

    Mo Farah reclaims the ‘Old North’ for Wales in I’m a Celebrity challenge

    1st December 2020

    Mo Farah attempted to reclaim the ‘Old North’ for the Welsh last night – by accidentally identifying Scotland as Wales during an I’m a Celebrity challenge.

    During the challenge, Mo Farah ended up in front of a map with shields positioned on different countries and had to use the walkie talkie to describe them to another celebrity.

    Despite the series being filmed at Gwrych Castle near Abergele, Mo Farah said he was “struggling to find Wales on the map” and misidentified it as Scotland.


  82. Golfnut says:

    Ignorance is bliss but just a bit embarrassing when displayed in front of a tv audiance.

    If I remember correctly he was one of ‘ starz ‘ who pulled out of the Commonwealth games in Glasgow.

  83. Capella says:

    I’m told Call Kay with an e is running a programme where callers whine about NS giving care workers a £500 bonus.

    The calculation obviously is that NS is riding high in the polls because she is perceived to be competent in handling Covid 19. That will be why the MSM mouthpieces are running stories lying about whether Scotland or England have the worse infection and death rates. If they can undermine that perception they can reduce the majority for Indy.

    The facts are available online however. I hope NS rushes those laptops to the people who are in need of access to real information i.e the misinformed who still rely on the BBC. Preloading the browsers with links to Travelling Tabby and Talkingupscotlandtwo would also be a good idea.


    • Alex Clark says:

      Regarding the comparison between death rates from Covid-19 in Scotland and England that Marr assaulted the FM with on Sunday. I looked into this yesterday, trying to get to the bottom of why there appears to be such a disparity that shows Scotland exceeding England in the number of deaths per million in recent weeks.

      I think I have a reasonable explanation for this and will post more later, my early conclusion though, you won’t be surprised to hear is that NO, Scotland does not have a higher death rate from Covid-19 than England, they are just being reported very differently by the relevant statistical authorities in each country.

  84. Capella says:

    Great collection of articles on the topic of media lies and mendacity over on John Robertson’s site. Several are on the biased data and “experts” used recently to fake the Covid 10 stats to make it look as though Scotland has a higher infection and death rate.

  85. Dr Jim says:

    So the UK guv refuse to relax the tax system in order for health workers to benefit from the Scottish peoples gift of £500, which we knew they would, but what makes this thing worse is the defenders of the Union now fill up the airwaves by insisting the health workers are still in work getting paid and did no more than their jobs

    Well they actually did do more than their jobs, they risked their lives for us by risking infection from us and many died for us because they did that

    I’d say that was worth £500 and if I had enough money I’d pay it myself and for the defenders of the Union to call this a stunt shows what a bunch of *STUNTS* they are

    • jfngw says:

      Their faux argument being punt by the united front of Tory & Labour politician’s is they will get the tax back, all they need to do is make the bonus bigger. But we don’t get the NI contribution back and the tax return would be in the future once HRMC have ‘calculated’ it, leaving a shortfall in the current budget. It seems these unionists believe in a magic money tree when they want to.

    • Perhaps our Scottish businesses, shops, hairdressers and such should join a scheme giving health and care workers a 10|% discount for, say, a month, to ‘applaud’ their sometimes life giving sacrifice in fighting the pandemic on all our behalf.

      The Brit Nats Red Yellow and Blue are beneath contempt.

    • Petra says:

      Alyn Smith was interviewed by Jo ”twisted gob” Coburn at lunchtime and of course one of the issues that she brought up was the £500 for NHS workers / Carers. She did her utmost to denounce Nicola Sturgeon for proposing to do this, with help from a Tory politician, however Alyn Smith sorted them out and made them look like callous fools when he said that clapping for NHS workers / carers basically didn’t hack it (my words). All they are doing is helping to push up the Independence stats and creating real anger amongst the NHS workers / Carers in England. He was questioned about the EU/fishing and made mincemeat of the Tory politician and Coburn too which left her with an even more totally distorted SNPBaad face than usual. Alyn Smith was really on the ball today and knows his ”stuff’ 😀.

      • Legerwood says:

        Reporting Scotland tonight reported on the £500 thank you – a GMB union official representing the bin men saying morale at rock bottom because they have been overlooked etc etc. No one from SG. Classic Reporting Scotland.

        • Petra says:

          We got that from Richard Leonard at Holyrood today too. Shop workers etc should get £500 now. Everyone and their granny, in fact, should get it as his boss et al at Westminster hold the purse strings and dictate cuts for Scotland. You can see where they are going with this now. Trying to create bad feeling which I doubt will work as most people are more sensible than them I’d imagine, realise that you can’t give just about every worker in Scotland £500 and that the NHS workers/Carers are a special case. We’re dealing with a lethal virus right now but there’s been a toxic virus permeating the UK for decades, if not centuries, now and it’s time that it was made extinct.

  86. Dr Jim says:

    Remember when I said a few days ago that when things started to move forward for Scotland the Scottish Taliban would be congratulating themselves on being the driving force behind it even though they’ve worked their little cotton socks off to do the opposite making every effort to destroy the SNP

    Somehow they’ve managed to award themselves badges of *integrity* for *fixing* the SNP
    The SNP, that’s the party they all claimed they’d resigned from or were going to resign from and wanted no more to do with and like the Ides of March were determined to plunge the daggers into the back of Caesar Nicola and her *cabal* but it’s all getting better now that the evil dictatoress has paid attention to their little band of internet warriors, which is just as well for her or they would have eh erm eh dun sumthin even more than gripe about a political party they promised not to vote for because some clown told them a load of urine to disguise personal grudges using the vehicle of an ex politicians situation to feed them drivel they could eat and drink because they’ve nothing else to do but go Baaa and jump fences

    Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon during dealing with a global pandemic, running the country, dealing with the shenanigans of Westminster, conducting international affairs and future foreign policy on Brexit with the EU, attending parliament to answer inane questions from Numpty opposition politicians, doing TV and radio interviews with a hostile anti Scottish media is panicked by wee insignificant website

    Aye she must have been, that’ll be right then eh phew! thank goodness for that or where would we all be

    Jings crivvens help ma Boab!

    • grizebard says:

      Well, indeed. You pretty much covered the bases there. Do you think they’ll all haud their wheesht now, or find other things to gripe on about to comfort the ailing Tories while the days tick down to May? (Guesses on a postage stamp…)

      • Legerwood says:

        On a postage stamp? Your splurging there grizebard – from 1st Jan 1st class stamps go up to 85p from 76p and 2nd class to 66p from 65p.

        • Welsh Siôn says:

          Legerwood remembers the Penny Post …

          (Don’t worry, Legerwood, I’m only teasing! OUCH! *That* hurt! It’s only the missus who’s allowed to throw crockery at me, y’know …)

    • Old Pete says:

      Spot on Dr. Jim, spot on.

    • Petra says:

      It would seem that megalomania, the psychopathological condition characterized by delusional fantasies of wealth, power and / or omnipotence, has been spreading rapidly from a base in Somerset to a cult like bubble online. Many of those who have been swept up along the way, and are now exhibiting symptoms of delusions of grandeur, are at least contained in the same space. Previously known as a psychiatric hospital. Now known as soor grapes pie in the sky.

  87. Hamish100 says:

    Re the award to Nhs staff. I have some issues over this. Some nhs doctors , nurses, porters have been very busy and on the frontline. Some GP’ practices have in my opinion not been. Actually some have basically passed the buck of healthcare to answering machines. One practice I know takes about 8 minutes to tell you to go somewhere else! Residential Care home and home care staff have been more at risk in my view and could deserve double the amount or hourly pay increased.

    Either way maybe all those who have worked during covid should get an extra day of leave or two for recuperation and as a thank you. We cannot finance in hard cash everyone.

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Does the NHS employ GP’s? daft question io know, I thought they were sort of seperate organisation…Our GP practiice is certainly pretty damn hands off, they are well paid for sure, so yes it is a case of all not being quite equal re who is rewarded with the ScotGov funding…

      • Hamish100 says:

        Fair comment. They are actually independent or private contractors.

        I think maybe the refuse collectors, bus drivers and all the other public workers should be recognised as well and rewarded if not in platitudes then a day or 2 extra leave is not unreasonable

    • Petra says:

      Social care staff have to get the £500 too, Hamish.

      • Hamish100 says:

        Good. Although domthose who did not work due to shielding or self isolating (not there fault) also get paid?

  88. Alex Clark says:

    No one will be surprised to read that the Unionist supporting churnalists at the Scotsman have another article tonight attacking Nicola Sturgeon. This one attempts to raise doubt over her honesty in answering questions and in particular, uses the Alex Salmond inquiry for a real dig as to her integrity as a politician.

    Analysis: Lack of true transparency could come back to haunt Nicola Sturgeon

    “It is, however, the Salmond inquiry that poses the biggest potential problem for Ms Sturgeon.

    While for many casual politics observers, the intense attention on the inquiry and subsequent stories can be overwhelming to the point where it all blends into one, the potential for that inquiry to do very real and very permanent damage to the First Minister is clear.”

    It’s obvious what the main lines of attack are for the Unionist media as you can read it every day.

    1. The SNP “civil war” and the Salmond inquiry.
    2. Section 30 refusal and Plan B or a lack of Plan B
    3. Englands Covid results are better than Scotlands.

    The first two have been around a good while now, simply because they work and do cause disagreements between SNP and Independence supporters. The fact that the Unionist media never fail to fan the flames should be a warning signal to take what you read with a large pinch of salt.

    The most recent line of attack, No.3 will probably grow legs in the coming days until it’s shown to be utterly false then it will quietly disappear.

    The best any supporter of Independence can do in my opinion is let them print their bullshit, just don’t take part in getting into arguments with other supporters of Independence as to which view is the right view. There are always two sides to a story (Point No.1) and more than one way to skin a cat (Point No.2).

    The opponents of Independence will use these differences to divide us. That’s their job.

    • grizebard says:

      In regard to your points 1-2, maybe the sober realisation dawns that all the (supposedly) pro-indy froth on various blogs has virtually no resonance whatever among ordinary voters, so essentially the usual suspects in the media are just wasting their time. Probably only succeeding in diminishing their own sullied reputations because they’re seen to be so hungry to bring down someone who is evidently striving so hard to serve us well during a historic crisis.

      As for your point 3, there may possibly be a comparative blip because of the all-England lockdown, but otherwise I doubt the facts back up the assertions. They BritNats will always try to play on the perceived psychological vulnerabilities of the ever-doubtful – it’s all they have left, after all – but you have to wonder at the potential blowback for “frenemies” who claim to be our pals really truly while never missing an opportunity to suggest we’re useless and inadequate. I believe that as more and more people settle towards independence, this kind of thing begins to grate and offend, and simply drives them even further away.

    • Petra says:

      And we should be posting data to show that their Covid ”facts” are in fact bullsh*t, Alex (some on here have been doing so already). Data taken from, for example, Professor John Robertson’s site is ideal for doing just that.

  89. Hamish100 says:

    …. if only the previous FM had gone home at night we wouldn’t have had this as an issue.

  90. Tam the Bam says:

    Following on from your above post Alex…Colin McKay (STV NEWS) has just announced that Next weeks witness ..Peter Murrell likely to be the last.
    So if thats the case,it looks like Nicola wont be called to give evidence.

    • Petra says:

      ..”So if that’s the case, it looks like Nicola wont be called to give evidence.”

      That would be a real shame Tam. Nicola Sturgeon and Alex Salmond should most definitely be called to give evidence, have their say, and if they did so I reckon that we’d see that Alex Salmond’s gripe (real anger) is focused on certain Civil Servants and not Nicola Sturgeon at all. If they don’t get called I reckon that this has all been a total waste of time. A ridiculous farce.

      • Republicofscotland says:

        Sorry Petra, but everything that happened with regards to the Salmond we shall call it a miscarriage of justice to be polite, had to be rubber stamped by Sturgeon. Including the actions of LE that cost the taxpayer over half a million quid.

        • Alex Clark says:

          Don’t stop there, spell it out.

          We want to know everything “that happened with regards to the Salmond” I’m all ears.

          By the way, I wouldn’t call Alex Salmond winning his case a “miscarriage of justice” when the opposite is true. He won because he deserved to win, that’s called justice.

          • Republicofscotland says:

            “We want to know everything “that happened with regards to the Salmond” I’m all ears.”


            I’m not going to do that, I don’t think you or quite a few others in here are ready for that, such is the devotion to Nicola Sturgeon in here, which under any other circumstances would be admirable.

            I’ll leave it at that.

            • Alex Clark says:

              I’m not devoted to Nicola Sturgeon, far from it but I will do everything I can in pursuit of Independence. I see no merit whatsoever in washing the dirty linen in public when Nicola Sturgeon is clearly doing a job that is increasing support for Independence.

              That is an unavoidable fact, it is also a fact that the Unionists would love nothing better than a scandal that brought down Nicola Sturgeon, hence the continual personal attacks from the likes of Marr on Sunday and the Scotsman today. I do not doubt your support for Independence but we differ greatly in how that may best be achieved.

              It is assuredly not by attacking each other and being seen to squabble among ourselves. I’ll leave the divisive propaganda to the Unionist politicians and their media, the Independence movement should be no part of that. Party politics have absolutely nothing to do with the goal of Independence and are but a means to an end.

              Whether you and others like it or not, Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP are the only path that currently exists and that will not change without massive disruption, a disruption that would threaten failure again. I won’t risk that. That does not make me a Sturgeon devotee at all costs, I’m not.

            • Dr Jim says:

              But you don’t leave it at that do you, you continue to spread this disinformation that somehow the FM controls Police Scotland and the Crown office and directs them on whichever charges they might bring about over legal cases and that’s a lie being sold by Unionists and people with personal grudges

              “I’m the first to admit I’m no angel” think on that statement then realise the protection that certain documents are affording the former FM right now that were they to become public knowledge would grace the front pages of every newspaper in the UK along with the SNP bad that would accompany it, exactly what every Unionist craves and exactly what every person with a grudge against the current FM and or SNP also desires, a scandal encompassing the SNP over what, a former FM who behaved improperly

              Not a criminal for sure, but certainly not an *Angel* and none of that is Nicola Sturgeon’s fault nor her responsibility

        • Petra says:

          Nicola Sturgeon rubber stamped modifications to a policy which included ALL ex-First Ministers. What was she to do when she found out that AS was in the firing line? Backtrack?

          And do you know RoS I’m not one bit interested in your version of events, your Mings Boss or people like Craig Murray. I’ll wait to hear what Alex Salmond has to say and of course Nicola Sturgeon. I’ve read every solitary word of the paperwork submitted by Alex Salmond and I’ve yet to read him have a bad word to say about Nicola Sturgeon unlike you and your ilk. Strange, eh? You’ve been duped and continue to be duped.

        • Bob Lamont says:

          There will be very few folk that know “everything that happened”, you are not one of them despite your prodigious sniping under any available subject..
          It’s raining – Ah that’s because of Sturgeon… For God’s sake give it a rest.

  91. Golfnut says:

    Torydom now claiming credit, it was really Sunak what done it.

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      Well, … as you Scots say, Sunak can do one. 😉

    • The linesman was on Distorting Scotland again tonight arguing that other workers should have got the £500 as well, and a wee GMB Steward, That Dick Leonard must have been away for his tea, moaned that binmen should get a bonus too.

      Dross in bed with a wee Commie Shop Steward.

      Oh, and Fraser of Allendar mouthpiece on about high earners getting tax free money.

      Earlier Jackie Baillie lied at Holyrood Covid briefing announcing that more residents in Scots care homes had succumbed to the virus that in her beloved fucking England.

      She knows of course that England is hiding Covid deaths in the lengthening unexplained category, but it doesn’t stop her…anything to divert attention from resolving the pandemic in Scotland, so consumed with he hate she is of the Bad SNP, including killing a few more dozens of her constituents?
      Note the Question mark. I am not asserting, merely postulating.
      The Yoons are reaching hysteria levels now.

      The Hon Sarah Smith is up in the editing suite as I clack, in full on Goebbels, saving the Union.
      Lovin’ it.

      • Dr Jim says:

        We need to give Boris Johnson £500 for *giving* *loaning* us all the money we the tax payer have to pay back that he likely won’t use to pay back the loan he took out generously from our back pockets that he pretended was his back pocket for all our benefits, just like the banking crash where they blew all our money then taxed us all over again to replace it then gave it back to the banks that robbed us in the first place, God Aye they’re just great those English governments that Scotland never voted for

        The broad shoulders of the UK only came about because while the rest of us ate porridge they ate prime rib and got Arses to match

        The fact that they even refer to Scots as porridge munchers is a reflection of their nasty thieving governance that our parents couldn’t afford to buy meat not so many years ago, the nearest I ever got to meat up till I was about ten years old was a ham hough oot the butchers for the soup, and even then we had to pretend it was a bone for the dug, but “we never had it so good” remember that phrase, *the Bastirts* Ooh! gun gimme a gun

        • Welsh Siôn says:

          Dr Jim,

          Speaking of which … you recall that other (and older) Johnson’s definition of ‘oats’?

          “a grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people”

          • Welsh Siôn says:

            Oh, and btw, as a freelancer, I suppose I should be grateful to Master Sunak for those Self-Employed Grants he’s been giving out to us who might otherwise have gone under during these parlous times. (Yes, come January, I’ll do my tax return and be taxed on that ‘grant’. Quel largesse !)

          • Dr Jim says:

            Well remembered you

          • Petra says:

            Oats for horses? Not half as bad as the smelly, rotten mashed potatoes used to feed pigs that were then deemed to be alright to support the people of Ireland. And they wonder why so many people absolutely detest them not just here in the UK but from all over the World. Then again many aren’t even aware of that because their heads are so far up their own self-entitled ar*es.

            • Welsh Siôn says:

              And the follow up?

              Did you all notice that reference has been made to Scotland, England and Ireland – but not my country?

              Typical, eh?

              ‘Family of Nations’, they call it. An invective from Jim Royle is called for, methinks ….

      • Petra says:

        ”The linesman was on Distorting Scotland again tonight arguing that other workers should have got the £500 as well, and a wee GMB Steward, That Dick Leonard must have been away for his tea, moaned that binmen should get a bonus too..”

        Nobody asking DRoss what his boss in London plans to do about this in relation to workers in England and in Leonard’s / GMB case what they plan to do in NIreland, England and Wales? Give them nought? In saying that I’m just waiting on Boris the Clown coming up with ”something” to outdo Nicola Surgeon. If it wasn’t so serious it would be fricken hilarious.

        • Dr Jim says:

          They just can’t leave it alone can they, without detriment to the bin guys did they dress from head to toe in sweltering hot PPE for sometimes more than 12 hour shifts and risking their own lives stand over and care for highly infectious patients who were dying of this horrible disease

          I had to stay in a lot do I get to claim my £500, yer head bursts with these people

        • Robin McHugh says:

          At the beginning of May this year, the Labour First Minister for Wales announced a £500 special one off payment for each of over 64000 social care workers in Wales in recognition of their efforts during the pandemic. He asked the treasury not to tax the payment. I don’t recall seeing or hearing any great fuss about it at the time.

          • Welsh Siôn says:

            Well remembered, Robin!

            Here you go.

            Senedd roundup: Thousands of care staff to receive £500 award this month

            5th June 2020

            The Welsh Government has extended the one-off £500 payment for social care workers in Wales announced last month to include ancillary and agency staff.

            Speaking at Friday’s coronavirus press briefing First Minister Mark Drakeford confirmed the award, in recognition of the work social care staff have done at the frontline of the pandemic, was now also being paid to kitchen and domestic staff working in care homes along with agency staff and nursing staff.

            In addition, personal assistants and domiciliary care workers providing care to people in their own homes are now eligible for the money.

            Tens of thousands of social care staff across Wales will receive the additional payment later this month.



        • Bob Lamont says:

          Would this be part of the segment presented by Mr double-barreled-enunciation ?
          It just turned up on YouTube and the “Chris Mitchell a Union Rep” was noted on the first and only comment as “Chris, the Rangers fan and arch unionist”…
          What a small world eh, 2 Unionists just happen to be handy for a PQ stir it up over a SNP initiative…..

          • Petra says:

            Thanks for that Bob. Have you ever heard such a load of old mince? Since when did carers start paying the highest rate of tax, FGS 😀 and whilst I’m in no way trying to diminish the job of a binman could anyone tell me how many have died of CV19 that they picked up while at work? The BBC? Pathetic. And the public know it.

            • Hamish100 says:

              The gmb guy wasn’t wearing PPE so should be disciplined!
              Didn’t Tory mp’s award themselves a recent wage rise?

  92. Welsh Siôn says:

    From the Commons tonight.

    MPs approved the UK government’s plan for a tougher tiered system for England to begin on Wednesday by 291 votes to 78. It means the new tier restrictions will replace the second national lockdown at midnight.

    A total of 55 Tory MPs voted against the government and 16 did note vote (some of these will have been abstentions, others will have been absences for other reasons)

    Plaid Cymru and SNP abstained.

    • Alex Clark says:

      I really don’t see it as being tougher at all except in a small way for Tier 3. Basically restrictions are relaxed such that all non essential shops and services in any tier remain open othe than hospitality in tier 3.

      This is doomed to fail once implemented and tougher restrictions later look likely as a result.

  93. Petra says:

    Professor John Robertson spelling it out for those who don’t seem to have their ”eyes firmly fixed on the big target”.


    ”It’s Neil Mackay again! I know, leave ‘im ee’s not warf it! Oh OK, just one more time? I’m completely aff the Scotsman now so I need to chew on something.

    Today’s twaddle:

    There’s one of the SNP top brass I’m friendly with, and not so long ago they brought the MP Joanna Cherry up in conversation apropos of nothing. She must have been playing on their mind. “It’s all about Joanna,” they said – with an acid-drop hiss which made clear they wouldn’t be inviting their party colleague around for Sunday afternoon tea any time soon. Cherry, they felt, is too fond of the limelight and her ambition is damaging and distracting the party. My acquaintance is a big noise in the SNP – one of the party’s most prominent politicians and a close pal to Nicola Sturgeon.

    Sounds like an imaginary friend there and if there is one of the ‘SNP top brass’ who is such a sad ‘Johnny-no-pals’ as to have befriended a Herald journo, he’ll be breaking-off toot suit after reading that.

    Do the rest of us care that much about these twitterspats between one or two leading members? I don’t. I have my eye firmly fixed on the big target and, crucially, I can still see clearly that only the SNP can get us out of this mess – the Union.

    Opinion poll after opinion poll tells us that 99% of the electorate is not paying a blind bit of attention to the commentariat gossip.

    As for Mackay’s pal, if you’re real, get a life saddo!

    Finally, leading the Yes movement, whoever said the SNP should take it over? They haven’t to my knowledge.

    Dear reader, who should be the face of the Yes Movement 2021?

    Sanjeev Kohli (Navid) or Jack?

    He who hingeth aboot getteth heehaw.”

    • Legerwood says:

      Is it not passing strange how little coverage there has been of Ms Sturgeon’s speech?. Lots of coverage though of peripheral matters and personalities with an inflated sense of their importance to the cause but providing useful distraction at every opportunity

      • Petra says:

        What speech Legerwood? Harassment Complaints Committee? If so I haven’t come across it. I’ve just posted John Somers which is a real opener and won’t be to some people’s liking 😀.

        • Legerwood says:

          Her speech to conference, the party conference.

          • Petra says:

            Oh right Legerwood it’s called cherry-picking as you well know. A propaganda technique that’s commonly used when someone is trying to manipulate and brainwash people. There’s an online site, whereby this tactic is used constantly (along with other propaganda techniques), that would make for a most interesting research subject at a later date 😀.

  94. Petra says:


    ‘A referendum on the Brexit power grab alongside Holyrood 2021 would break the Union.’

    ..”So why a power-grab referendum and not an independence referendum on the same day as the Scottish elections? The problem is that an independence referendum would link the Scottish election and the referendum back into historic party loyalties and possibly push supporters of independence from other parties back into their default Labour, Lib Dem and even Conservative tribes as well as lose the SNP voters who don’t support independence. It would also create the only possible conditions for anti-SNP tactical voting and possibly even threaten an SNP majority. Additionally, it would open up two spoiler tactics for Westminster to undermine Scottish independence.

    Westminster retains power over the constitution and could pass a law that a Yes result required 50% of the voting age population to be binding. 20% don’t bother to vote so 50%, under those circumstances, is impossible. Then unionist parties would tell their voters to vote tactically in the Holyrood poll but to boycott the referendum ballot. The Scottish government would have to go to court to oppose such legislation but it’s not clear they would win and it would be a confusing mess for voters. This would create a Catalonia style situation where any declaration of independence would be largely ignored by the international community.

    Indyref2 on May 6 would also trigger legal changes from the Westminster government (ending up in the Supreme Court) who would state that even if the Scottish government was legally allowed to hold such a referendum, they couldn’t bind the UK government to respect the result and the proceeding could take so long as to block the referendum taking place.

    Independence after such a poll would not generate the swift and vital international recognition for independence to facilitate trade and diplomatic relations. Committed independence supporters might be thinking “bring it on”, but the 7% undecided and many of the recent No to Yes converts are thinking that looks like a constitutional shit-show and they would be right.”..

    OR THIS:-

    Independence for Scotland Party (ISP):- ”We’re glad to see that the anti climax of the SNP conference wasn’t the anti climax it might have been. The winner appears to be independence. Now let’s get it done. #VoteISPOnTheRegionalList #VoteISP.’

  95. jfngw says:

    Spotted a tweet yesterday, it commented that the £500 for NHS workers had caught the BBC flat and they were struggling to decide how to make it negative. They have managed to get themselves in gear today, they run a story with no positives just streams of critics, topped off with D.Ross claiming it should be more (and they say there is no panto this year).

  96. Dr Jim says:

    Theresa May says she doesn’t trust Boris Johnsons motives

    I’m totally shocked, oh wot a surprise, how can this be, or if you live in Glasgow, zatright eh?

  97. Petra says:

    Dearie, dearie me. What a body blow for some that absolutely blasts the speculation, lies and innuendo, that we’ve had to endure for quite some time now in relation to this person, right out of the water 😀.

    Watch from 16:50 on.

    • Legerwood says:

      Well, well. Interesting. Some of the panel members not exactly the sharpest tacks in the box. I trust that there is a stenographer taking the official notes because some of the panel did not seem to be listening to the answers which were clearly not the answers they wanted.

      • Dr Jim says:

        My impression too Legerwood, disappointment all round for from the usual suspects
        I have to say Alex Cole Hamilton always gives me a laugh, you could tell he once saw an episode of Crown Court and in his mind he was in it

        What about Jackie Baillie asking Somers if he felt he was in *like a marriage* with the FM
        “Much as I admire the First Minister no it was not like a marriage” came his slightly embarrassed answer to a stupid question

        I hope there’s a digital recording of all this because although these folk are asking questions we don’t know that they’re writing down the same answers we heard

        If this is the best they’ve got to gossip about the FM comes out of this cleaner than Dettol

        • Bob Lamont says:

          Indeed the disappointment on the old Bailey’s face as her attempts to imply some personal loyalty (influencing professional judgement?) foundered was most enjoyable, Somers was smart enough to stick to verifiable fact rather than engage in her flights of fancy.
          Obsession on what role the FM played rather than how and where things went awry in this administrative and legal process is discomforting, a political rather than procedural objective.

          As to the FM coming out of this smelling of Dettol, none of us are in any doubt the “Ah, but” brigade will continue with added vigour and copious quantities of diarrhea directly, they have nothing else to offer.

          SNP are in the ascendant because folks are sick of the status-quo, a large part of blame for which lies with the Westminster style of politics, infecting even our own Parliament.
          Scots long for honest debate, equitable governance and honest journalism, none of which can be forged whilst bound to a corrupt and discredited London mafia.
          SNP are imperfect, but a bridge to a better future, we are not about to let them burn it down.

        • Petra says:

          ”disappointment all round for from the usual suspects.”

          Yeah disappointment, in fact sheer disbelief, is clear to see on the mugs of Alex Cole Hamilton and Jackie Baillie, Dr Jim, but that disappointment must be eating away at some ”others” now who have made defamatory allegations about Nicola Sturgeon in the past.

        • jfngw says:

          You will need to take anything from Baillie’s conclusions with a pinch of salt. She asked where a meeting took place but prompted if it was in the FM office, the reply was he didn’t actually know but it most likely was. To which Baillie then replies and presumably notes ‘it was in the office’.

          I hope she is never on a jury ‘did you see this offence being committed’, ‘No but it probably was’, ‘So it was committed by the defendant’.

          More amusing was after her asking if it was like a marriage, the shock on the face of the person being questioned and then the claim by Baillie it was not her that had taken the questioning down that route, not sure what this meant unless she was just posing questions from twitter that took her fancy.

          • Legerwood says:

            Yes. The bit about the ‘marriage’ really stood out and JB’s ‘it wisnae me’ response. She raised it and framed it in that way quite deliberately and this was quite clear from her demeanour when asking the question in the way she did.

    • Capella says:

      Thx Petra – John Somers certainly blows at least two pet conspiracy theories out of the water. Firstly, no he did not tell Nicola Sturgeon about his meeting with Miss A, at her request, and secondly, no the meeting with Geoff Aberdein was never in the FMs diary because he was actually meeting somebody else.

      That was the obvious explanation for the diary omission all along. How disappointing for the theorists.

      Jackie Baillie is despicable as she tries to smear with implication.

      Here’s a clip of the Somers evidence session:

      • Petra says:

        It’s been amazing following the data that’s emerged from the evidence given to the Committee, Capella, especially in relation to who knew what, when and who was appointed to whichever role at any given time. Someone has mentioned that Nicola Sturgeon (and Alec Salmond?) will not be called to give evidence and if so that will be a travesty of justice, imo. She deserves to be heard following the lies, rumours and innuendo that’s been used, in particular, in some ”quarters” to stir up hatred against her, to have her removed from office, discredit her and her party and ultimately undermine our chances of getting our independence .

        • Capella says:

          I agree. Let’s see whether the non-appearance at the committee turns out to be just another unsubstantiated rumour to add to the growing pile.
          I have been impressed throughout the evidence sessions with the integrity of the civil servants and the union rep who have already attended. They clearly believe that the Scottish Government is taking the protection of staff seriously. The contrast with the graft and secrecy of Westminster procedures is glaring.

          • Petra says:

            ”The contrast with the graft and secrecy of Westminster procedures is glaring.”

            And yet that too became a big issue ”elsewhere” in that the ScotGov ignored the advice from Westminster i.e. that Westminster wasn’t going down the route of being enabled to hold ex-minsters to account for sexual harassment. On the other hand the ScotGov gets flack when they are seen to be taking orders from Westminster. It’s really just a case of targeting someone and then cherry-picking what you want to contrarily use against them.

      • Robert McCandless says:

        You would be right if what Mr Somers said was true. However there is the small matter of the Leslie Evans e mail advising that she actually spoke with Mr Somers ‘re the revised policy on few occasions.

        Something isn’t accurate.

        • Petra says:

          We’re talking about the fact that Jon Somers didn’t mention his meeting with a complainant (or the substance of her complaint) with Nicola Sturgeon and that no meeting with Geoff Aberdein was logged in NS’s diary. Maybe he was sent an email from LE about the revised policy. I’m sure that he would be and Nicola Sturgeon was aware of that too as were many other people, so what’s that got to do with it Robert? Why imply that he was lying? Lying about what?

      • Petra says:

        Capella I hope you don’t mind me posting your 11.05am comments here on the Indyref2 site.

      • I nearly wrote “Jackie Baillie is a smear on the landscape” , but stopped myself just in time.

        For the absence of any doubt, let me declare that Jackie Baillie is NOT a smear on the landscape.

  98. Hamish100 says:

    It suggested to me that the FM followed process and procedure correctly. As for some of the civil servants higher up they are too closely linked with civil service HQ.

  99. Republicofscotland says:

    A pretty good article from Kevin McKenna in the National today.—means/

  100. Petra says:

    Kate Forbes MSP:- ”I’m bemused to see Lib Dems, Labour and Tories all rushing to defend Boris Johnson and excuse him from any requirement to exempt the £500 ‘Thank You’ to Health and Social Care workers from income tax. Justify your argument, if you wish, on the basis of politics, but don’t expose your ignorance of how devolved income tax works. The Scot Gov sets rates and bands for NSND only; we don’t control exemptions or allowances. Nor do we collect the tax, which is reconciled 2 yrs later. Tories, I understand, will always defend Boris Johnson. Labour and Lib Dems are intriguing – they’d rather attack the SNP, even if it costs Health and Social Care workers, than focus their ire on a UK Gov who just last week started to balance the books by freezing most pay.”


    ‘Putting People at the Heart of Scotland’s Arctic Dialogue.’

    ”Described as the ‘most refreshing policy’ she has ever read by Marie-Anne Coninsx , former EU Ambassador for the Arctic – Scotland’s Arctic Connections policy framework is both ‘clear and practical’ she states. The document which aims to connect Scotland to the countries of the Arctic , by co-operation, sharing of knowledge and the creation of partnerships was launched last year in Stromness, Orkney. “Welcome to Scotland, A European Gateway to the Arctic Region.”..

    ”It is a ‘very unique’ policy comments Marie-Anne Coninsx. Most people in Scotland are likely to be unaware of its contents but it is well worth reading, even just to imagine what Scotland going forward could be like and contribute to not just the Arctic region, but to the world.”..

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      You don’t expect anything else, of course. But look at the spin in this headline from the Telegraph regarding the first story.

      “Nicola Sturgeon under pressure to top up £500 NHS ‘thank you’ bonus after PM tax demand backfires”

      Has most of the elements of “SNP Bad Bingo”, don’t you think?

      * Sturgeon in a bad place (‘under pressure’) – Check
      * Sturgeon’s £500 is stingy (‘top up’ required) – Check
      * Sturgeon stamps her little foot (‘demands’) – Check
      * Sturgeon’s ‘demand’ doesn’t work (‘backfires’) – Check

      I claim a full house in 17 words!

  101. Petra says:

    ‘How Brexit may lead to Scottish independence and Irish unification.’

    ..”So one particular irony that may come from Brexit is that the so-called Conservative and Unionist Party – by its absolute insistence on forcing through departure from the European Union – may be instrumental in breaking up the union of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.”..


    ‘Scotland ‘ready to start vaccinations’ after COVID Pfizer jab approval.’

    ”The MHRA said the jab could be used from next week and the First Minister said Scotland was ready to begin its vaccination programme “as soon as supplies arrive”..,scotland-ready-to-start-vaccinations-after-covid-pfizer-jab-approval

  102. Welsh Siôn says:

    Something to brighten up your day, following that Covid tiers in England vote last night.

    “It is recorded on the Parliament website that, Jamie Wallis, the Conservative MP for Bridgend, voted both in favour and against the restrictions.”


  103. Petra says:

    ”Meet The Anti-Regulation Groups Influencing Post-Brexit Trade Policy.’

    ”A handful of prominent individuals from anti-regulation thinktanks with close ties to International Trade Secretary Liz Truss have been appointed to top government advisory boards guiding the future of UK post-Brexit trade policy. Individuals from four groups associated with the 55 Tufton Street network of free-market, pro-Brexit groups have been named as advisors since April 2019, DeSmog has found. Many have a history of rejecting mainstream climate science and have worked with US-based libertarian groups to push for the removal of food safety, farming and animal welfare standards as the UK negotiates new post-Brexit trade deals.”..


    ‘Family members not welcome: hostile post-Brexit rules can separate EU citizens from their loved ones.’

    ”Europeans who relocate to the UK, and marry a foreigner, by 31 December 2020 will be entitled to stay in the country without difficulties. For those who wish to move to the UK with their loved ones from 2021 onwards, the future is bleak. The Brexit reality is about to cause hardship for the families of EU citizens, writes Aleksandra Jolkina (QMUL).”..

  104. Petra says:

    Pete Timmins:- French tax authorities have confirmed that UK residents, who own 2nd homes in France, will no longer benefit from EU exemption from social levies (CSG & CRDS). As a result a 36.2% total tax levy will be applied on profits when they sell houses.”


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

  105. Petra says:

    ‘Scottish independence: 15th poll in a row finds majority support for Yes.’


    Oh FGS!

    ‘Scottish Enterprise ‘can’t break Flamingo Land Loch Lomond deal.’

    • Welsh Siôn says:


      Story 1. Sorry I don’t get the Maths here. Am I being dim or something:

      “The survey showed support for independence at 56% and backing for the Union at 44%, in line with recent polling. It also found about 25% of people are not completely certain about their position.”

      56 + 44 + 25 = 125%


      • vivianoblivian7 says:

        25% don’t knows.
        Link to Ipsos MORI article.
        Other stat that jumps out for me is, (excluding don’t knows) 70% of Scots are pessimistic about the outcome of Brexit. That’s where the additional, future converts lie.

      • Petra says:

        I don’t know what’s going on there, WS. Maybe Jackie Baillie has managed to infiltrate Ipsos Mori / STV and is involved in carrying out calculations 😀

      • Alex Clark says:

        The answer to your question is there in the article. It is those who placed themselves between 3 and 8 on a scale of 1 to 10 in their support of Independence.

        The survey showed support for independence at 56% and backing for the Union at 44%, in line with recent polling. It also found about 25% of people are not completely certain about their position.

        Respondents were asked to rank themselves from complete support for the Union to complete support for independence on a scale of one to 10 – it found a quarter were between three and eight.

    • Capella says:

      Archive version of The National poll findings for those who don’t subsribe. Interesting that a majority trust the SNP on a number of issues such as economy and education.

  106. carolclark1 says:

    Good News indeed about the vaccine, light at the end of the tunnel hopefully. It will be nice when we can return to some semblance of normal next year.

    Has anyone read Alyn Smyth’s piece in the National this morning. Sorry cannae dae the archive thingy. Blimey I thought Trump was a bad loser, Alyn is in the same vein.

    “They wanted rid of me, out to get me”. Who are “they” I wonder. What arrogance on display, toys out the pram bigtime. Dear oh dear, not pretty. He was ill advised to write that piece, but I don’t suppose that he and his ilk will see that. The noise from the whining is very loud indeed. Talk about sore losers.

    Far as I can see it’s the ordinary SNP party members activating their democratic right to vote for whom they pleased. The fact that it wisnae you disnae mean there was anything wrong with them. They are just taking back control of their party and trying now to get rid of the GRA that has caused ructions, that no one else wanted except this wee faction. I don’t see anything wrong with that.

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      There you go, carolclark1. Saw it. Said it. Sorted.

      (With thanks for the lesson in archiving from Petra)

    • Alex Clark says:

      I have read it and wasn’t impressed. Sour grapes indeed and he comes across as a big greeting wean. He would have been better accepting that he does not have majority support within the SNP and starting work on changing that if he wants people to agree with him.

      This was not the way to do that and it was Trumpish petted lip crap. I wish people in such power would consider the possible results of what they say before putting themselves in print.

  107. Dr Jim says:

    Whilst the big England line up the Queen and David Attenborough and folks like that to receive the vaccine on the Telly to persuade the rest of us to take advantage I would just suggest that in Scotland we have a slightly different mindset about who could persuade us to do anything and for me it just has to be

    *Jack and Victor go for a jag*

    • Petra says:

      I think the Tory politicians, all members of the Royal family and the scientists should line up first with arm outstretched or backside in the air.

      • Welsh Siôn says:

        I think the Tory politicians, all members of the Royal family and the scientists should line up first with … backside in the air.


        Scotland. Know your enemas!

  108. carolclark1 says:

    Thank you WS bit of a ludite this auld yin.

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      Sharing Petra’s lesson (fee payable to her after my cut as her agent):

      1 Right click on the link and click “copy link address”
      2 Open archive today –
      3 Paste your copied link into the red text box “my url is alive…
      4 Click “save”.
      5 If the link is already archived a notice will pop up and tell you so. Just accept that and use the already archived link
      6 If it hasn’t been archived, archive today will start the process of archiving. May take a few minutes.
      7 When complete you will have a link in the address bar like this: which is your archived link.
      8 Bookmark Archive today for future reference.

  109. Capella says:

    @ carolclark1 – agree, that was a particularly sour grapes column from Alyn Smith. He should have waited till he simmered down if he can’t accept defeat gracefully. That’s democracy, voting for the people you want to represent you, whatever the forum.
    For balance, here’s the new equalities convener, Lynn Anderson:

    • Legerwood says:

      Just read the article.
      There iare copies of an exchange of tweets between Ms Cherry and Ms Blackman in the article. The reply by Ms Cherry to Ms Blackman’s tweet seemed totally out of proportion to what Ms Blackman had tweeted

      • Petra says:

        There is more going on there, imo, than meets the eye, Legerwood. I was a bit perturbed to say the least that Joanna Cherry only announced in the last few days that she did indeed get support from Nicola Sturgeon when she pointed out that comments in her recent Times article were ”incorrect.” I then asked myself why JC had said nought about this since September when she must have been well aware that outright lies had been circulating online, in particular ”elsewhere” about Nicola Sturgeon.

        • Legerwood says:

          Do you remember this from May last year? We had a wee bit of a discussion about it at the time on that other site.

          “”Cherry told the Sunday National of her surprise when she received no messages of support from SNP leadership after being subject to abuse.
          “Ultimately, the strength of the party is its members. I am grateful to all those people who have contacted me with their support in recent days and I know those members want to see their dues being used to help our cause and to robustly defend and support our team,” she said.
          “I was surprised when no one from the SNP leadership contacted me to enquire after my well-being. They still haven’t and I am afraid that if such a lack of support for parliamentarians within the party is allowed to continue it will dissuade people from entering politics.”
          The SNP Justice and Home Affairs spokesperson then urged colleagues to deal with party grievances via the appropriate channels and not through the press or the social media arena.””

          • Petra says:

            Yeah something stinks, Legerwood, and it’s not rotten fish. It’s getting to the point that you don’t know who to trust now nor what their ”motivations” are, although we can take a guess at the latter 🙄.

  110. Golfnut says:

    This, from Nicola on the new Poll.

  111. Alex Clark says:

    This is truly boak inducing English Nationalism writ large, disgusting creatures.

    Health secretary Matt Hancock said on Wednesday that he was “very proud” that the UK had become the first place in the world to have a clinically authorised coronavirus vaccine.

    “I’m obviously absolutely thrilled with the news. I’m very proud that the UK is the first place in the world to have a clinically authorised vaccine ready to go,” he said.

    Business secretary Alok Sharma also hailed the breakthrough – and claimed the UK had “led humanity’s charge” against the virus.

    “The UK was the first country to sign a deal with Pfizer/BioNTech – now we will be the first to deploy their vaccine,” he said. “In years to come, we will remember this moment as the day the UK led humanity’s charge against this disease.” 🤮

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      “Matt” has signed a four page letter to my mum today telling her about the latest situation after the end of the 2nd English lockdown. It was promptly binned.

      “Matt” continues to moonlight as the cartoonist on the Telegraph.

      “Matt” is no gloss.

    • Dr Jim says:

      England’s German scientists are the bestest of all the other countries German scientists and we won the war and we said it first so we’re the winners, no backsies! nope not listening, fingers in ears

      • Capella says:

        The scientists who developed the vaccine were Turkish refugees living in Germany who founded their own company BioNTech. Worth crowing about – for Germany.

    • Alex Clark says:

      I really can’t get over this absolute flag-waving British Nationalist crap from Sharma:

      “In years to come, we will remember this moment as the day the UK led humanity’s charge against this disease.”

      Led humanities charge Hahahaha.

      The twat must think he’s Churchill but Johnson has already claimed that role. Wait to see his performance at 17:00, all that will be missing are the trumpets and singing of Land of Hope and Glory as plucky England produces another world beating performance and shows Johnny foreigner how it should be done.

      No matter that the vaccine has been developed by a German company working with and American company and that the vaccine will be produced in China!

      No! It was the Brits who were first in the world LOL.

      • Capella says:

        Heard them on radio at lunchtime – absolutely hilarious listening to their world beating hubris. What could go wrong 🙂

        • Alex Clark says:

          That’s more or less exactly what my wife said “what will they say if it all unravels?”

      • Petra says:

        “In years to come, we will remember this moment as the day the UK led humanity’s charge against this disease.”

        Nothing being said about them not ”charging” at all rather going at a snail’s pace initially leading to thousands of unnecessary deaths and then ”charging” around like a bull in a china shop which has led to over 70,000 deaths in the UK now and more to come. The UK’s got the worst death rate in Europe and probably the World in fact when you take into account level of population. God they’ve got some brass neck on them.

        ‘Covid death toll in UK reaches more than 70,000.’

  112. Legerwood says:

    O/T but it has been reported that Labour in Scotland has just selected another Labour member of the House of Lords to stand as a candidate in 2021 Holyrood elections. That makes a total of 3 Labour peers selected so far as candidates apparently.

    The barrel must be well and truly scraped now if they are going fishing in the HoL.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Labour logic, select a Baroness from the HOL to stand for parliament to represent the ordinary voter
      Tory logic, deselect a failed member of parliament make them a Baroness and send them to the HOL to represent themselves

      In Tory world you get promoted for failure to the HOL, in Labour world you get demoted to the Scottish parliament

      • JoMax says:

        In Labour world you get promoted to the HoL for being a true, blue Socialist then demoted to the Scottish Parliament for being a true, red, white and blue British Nationalist. No wonder they don’t know whether they’re coming or going, but they sure know where all their salaries, fees and allowances are going.

    • Welsh Siôn says:

      Will try finding the article, Legerwood.

      But in the meantime, just as a point of reference. If you click on the “Latest News” from ‘Scottish’ Labour on their website, you’ll see that the “Latest” is a blog dated … 25 September 2020!

      Tee hee hee.

    • It’ll be like shooting peers in a barrel, Legerwood.
      Lord McConnell will be next..

  113. Dr Jim says:

    So here’s another odd thing that’s been happening though we should have expected it, apparently throughout our towns and cities in Scotland Chinese people have been suffering attacks both physical and property damage and the perpetrators of these crimes have been heard to shout abuse while they’re doing it about the *China Virus* and blaming everybody who looks remotely Chinese for it, last nights STV news reported a young Korean student who’d been beaten up by these people and was brave enough to go on camera to tell his story

    Even though Trump is finished the racist damage he’s done lingers on and as long as the rest of us have to suffer his clone right here in the UK this stuff’s not going away because we all know the culprits and their motives behind this behaviour

  114. Alex Clark says:

    Johnson is on, spitfires are flying and searchlights blazing! 🙈

  115. Dr Jim says:

    STVs Bernard Ponsonby says Johnson will cave because he has no choice, senior Tories are advising Johnson not to block a referendum on Scottish Independence as that would undoubtedly drive up support so far the situation would become irretrievable so Johnson should accede to a referendum now and fight it

    I’ve got a funny feeling though that far from Johnson being a Numpty and opening his mouth too often and so stupidly about Scotland he actually wants rid of Scotland and is doing it deliberately but hopes in his mentally irregular brain that somehow he can still retain control of Scotland in some fashion, Bernard Ponsonby is never usually far off the mark……for a Liberal Democrat that is

    • Christopher Rosindale says:

      That may be true of Johnson, but not of Michael Gove, a Scot.

      Weeks ago, the Sunday Times reported that Johnson was “irritated” by rising support for Independence, while Gove was “panicking.”

      Gove is someone we must be careful of. He is a Scot, who does not want to watch his country abandon him by voting Yes. He will likely try any method he can think of to stop a Yes vote. And his long friendship with Dominic Cummings should be a cause for concern. Cummings is a gifted campaign organizer, who probably learned from Vote Yes in 2014, and he is an obvious person for a desperate Unionist like Gove to turn to for help.

      We should be aware, especially now that Cummings has left Downing Street.

  116. Christopher Rosindale says:

    2 weeks ago, Alex Massie penned an article in the Sunday Times where he stated that “one thing is clear, there cannot be a referendum while Boris Johnson is in Downing Street.”

    The subtext was obvious – because the Unionists would probably lose it.

    More interestingly, he also claimed that the Scottish Tories’ private reactions to Johnson’s “Devolution has been a disaster for Scotland” comments were “unprintable in many newspapers.”

    And now, Jacob Rees Mogg craps on the Scottish Tories as well, with similar remarks.

    Both of these incidents clearly illustrate one of the Scottish Tories’ biggest problems:

    They are expected to be loyal to party colleagues in England, but have no control whatsoever over their actions.

    It is very doubtful that either Johnson or Mogg gave the slightest thought to how their comments would sound in Scotland, and this problem is likely to continue……

    Douglas Ross must be screaming in frustration.

    • grizebard says:

      True, but what DRoss may think is entirely irrelevant. His only function is to appear on Scottish-oriented media and claim that – whatever it is – it’s all the fault of the SNP.

  117. Lockeand.Keynes says:

    Have you ever considered that Rees – Mogg is riding on a wave of resentment by playing the right cards?

    Think of it this way, whenever there is a force, there is an equal and an opposite.

    In this case, there is a force that says “you cannot be English”, and the equal and opposite force is a rise in resentment by English voters.

    There is a multi pronged assault upon Englishness, which I think that nobody really cares about, because the media and politicians view it as a think that “ought not to be mentioned in public”

    Firstly, there is a feeling in England that if you are English and take pride in living in England, you are automatically a supporter of the far right. Well I can tell you that I, along with many people I know, who feel English, who feel attached to the St George Cross (as it is our flag) are not far right. Not one bit. We range from socialist, to capitalists to liberals but we are not far right. To suggest otherwise, and label an entire identity as far right, is beyond depressing, and quite frankly angering. The media hates Englishness, especially the guardian (that published an article that said that Englishness didn’t exist and that it was a fantasy to talk about English identity)

    This has been compounded however by the rise of Scottish and Welsh nationalism. From Englands perspective (a poorer part of England if I may say so, Grimsby) it is now acceptable (as it should be) to drape yourself in the Saltire in Scotland and paint yourself blue and white on a non – match day, but in England if you do that you are automatically judged to be extreme right wing, and on a match day a hooligan.

    There is, in my opinion, a lot to celebrate about England, and English culture and History – the pound (oldest currency on earth and originated in England), innovation, the monarchy, our somewhat legend taste for wearing suits and drinking tea. All things that relate to ordinary people and that ordinary people identify with, many things that we share with Scotland, Wales and even Ireland, not things that the far right monopolises.

    Now, where does Jacob Rees – Mogg fit into this? Well, his promotion of a sense of being “Apart” plays in well with English history. Up until the act of union, and even as a constituent of the U.K, England has seemed always to be at war with Europe – a military history that is based on fighting and often winning. Agincourt, The Spanish Armada, even elements of the reformation, and as part of a British State, Waterloo, Trafalgar, The Nile, World War one and Two, the Falkland war. Its that sense of apart that drives his support, and is a sense of apart that even divides some brexiteers.

    Take for example me and someone I was debating with the other day. My position on Brexit was that I support it, but under my strict conditions, (USMCA, EEA and EFTA membership), however his argument was that we can survive and be “apart” from Europe. If you note its that theme of “we are apart” that reoccurs and it is that theme that is intrinsic to English history.

    Combined with Boris, the modern Henry VIII (both were easily bored, had multiple women, impulsive, similar build, rely upon advisers and “yes men”, seek a breaks with Europe, only cares about personality, not necessarily wealth, antipathy with France, came from a rich family and seeks glory and war – though that last one given my aspirations post college I cannot necessarily talk) then this backlash has found its champions. Just like those most the Tudors, our modern Henry VIII, along side his Wolsey (Cummings), his Edward (Raab) and his Elizabeth (Priti Patel) seeks to utilise this force for changing these islands, and how strange it is that it is happening at the counter – renaissance, when wealth is moving west to east, not east to west (as when started to happen around the time of the Tudors). Don’t misunderstand me, there is much of Boris I like, he’s carring out my will (even as someone without a vote), he’s a good communicator, but there is also elements that I’m concerned about – chiefly his lack of experience, and he may well be playing with fire.

    So there is your cards, being apart, your wave being English resentment, creating a backlash of nationalism.

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