The question the BBC and the Tories don’t want to answer

Because I must have masochistic streak a mile wide, last night I watched what the BBC served up to us with the grandiose title of a leaders’ debate. Or rather, I tried to watch it but then halfway through lost the will to live and switched over to another channel, which proves two things: firstly that I can only have a masochistic streak that’s half a mile wide, and secondly that the BBC is an active participant in the campaign to prevent Scottish independence and intends to keep Scotland firmly under Westminster rule by dint of not taking independence seriously and boring us all into submission.

You can’t help but wonder if in between having discussions with Conservative politicians about just how many union flags ought to decorate the cover of the BBC’s annual report, the Corporation’s management had a strategy meeting in which they decided that the best way for a thoroughly British broadcaster to cover Scottish independence was to make it so dull and uninspiring that after thirty minutes viewers would be begging the BBC to make it stop and promising to resign themselves to Conservative rule from Westminster for all eternity just as long as they could watch Bargain Hunt instead. Which is terribly convenient for the British establishment because pinning all your hopes on being able to turn a profit from an over-priced broken down piece of tat that you’ve found at a car boot sale is the next reform to the social security system that the Tories have got in mind.

Not that Douglas Ross was at all keen to talk about the policies of his Westminster masters during last night’s, ahem, debate, but that didn’t prevent him from constantly trying to speak over the top of everyone else. Douglas was terribly keen to talk about one thing and one thing only. Here’s your handy summary of all that the Scottish Conservatives have to offer the people of Scotland in this election and for the next five years to come, badreferendumbadreferendumbadreferendumbadreferendum. That was all that Dross, who is rapidly living down to his nickname, could manage, even as he accused Nicola Sturgeon of being obsessed about a referendum. No matter the subject of the question, and there were plenty of soft balls being lobbed Dross’s way by a virtual audience who had clearly been selected by the same people who are in charge of picking the audience for an episode of BBC Question Time coming to you from a Brexity part of Essex which regularly elects a right wing hang ’em and flog ’em Tory MP. Although to be fair the BBC thinks that’s also a description that applies to Dundee.

Despite the fact that the issue of independence and a second independence referendum is central in this election campaign, the debate was constructed according to the BBC’s usual idea of balance. So we had two politicians who support another referendum up against three who oppose it. Alex Salmond and his new Alba party were noticeable only by their absence, presumably as a brand new party without any representation in Holyrood, and moreover one which would not even have been in existence when the BBC’s planning and organisation for last night’s debate was being carried out , the corporation felt that it was more appropriate not to invite them at the very last minute after the audience panel and their questions had already been selected and vetted.

Supporters of different parties will no doubt have different opinions about whether or not the BBC was correct to do that. However what cannot be disputed is that the BBC knew by last weekend that there are now three significant pro-independence parties contesting this election, and while it’s possible to understand why the Corporation did not change its plans at the last minute to take account of this new political reality, it’s far less possible to understand why, knowing as they did that supporters of independence were outnumbered three to two on the panel, the organisers selected three questions in a row which were hostile to independence out of the pre-approved questions which had been submitted well in advance by the virtual audience.

It’s very difficult to escape the conclusion that the BBC has learned absolutely nothing from the justified criticism it came in for for its heavily slanted coverage of the last independence referendum campaign.

Apart from the BBC, the big loser was Douglas Ross, for all that the virtual audience seemed to be disproportionately comprised of nodding heads who only nodded even more enthusiastically whenever Douglas appeared on screen to tell us that he didn’t want another referendum. He came across as childish and entitled, both in the manner in which he tried to talk over the top of the other speakers but also in his assertion that he would not work with an SNP government if that’s what the people of Scotland elected. But then we shouldn’t have been surprised by that, given that the entire platform of the Scottish Conservatives consists of ignoring the democratic will of the people of Scotland as expressed through the ballot box.

Of course the BBC won’t be keen to highlight the fundamentally anti-democratic position of the Scottish Conservatives. The party is of course perfectly entitled to argue against independence and to oppose holding another independence referendum, that’s their right in a democracy. However what they are not entitled to do is to continue to block another referendum after the people of Scotland have listened to their arguments and decided to vote to have one anyway. Neither do they have the democratic right to undermine and weaken the devolution settlement despite not possessing anything approaching a mandate from the people of Scotland giving their consent for them to do so. The fact that they are able to do just that using powers and authority which do not derive from the democratic choices of the people of Scotland is precisely the reason why it is imperative for Scotland to revisit the issue of independence. It is a question about the very future of democracy itself in this country. But that is a question which neither the BBC nor the Conservatives are at all comfortable about confronting.

Please note that there will not be a blog update tomorrow as I have to travel to the Southern General in Glasgow for physiotherapy treatment on my hand and arm.

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Manny Singh, who some months back was convicted for his part in organising a pro-indy march and rally in Glasgow has recently found out that his taxi driving licence has been suspended. Irrespective of what you feel to be the rights and wrongs of that case, taxi-driving was his sole source of income and without the licence he is no longer able to support himself or his family. Manny has started a crowdfunder to pay for the legal fees to appeal this decision and to get his licence restored.

You can find out more about the case here:

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367 comments on “The question the BBC and the Tories don’t want to answer

  1. Brave man Paul, I managed to find that other channel even before the hatefest started. A BBC managed audience, with the Rt Hon Sarah controlling the questions, and three branch managers to trot out their replies. Nah, not for me these days. Nothing to learn there. Onwards.

  2. Union Man says:

    Douglas Ross was exposed as a political lightweight and a one-trick pony. I was really impressed by Mr Sarwar, who was cool as a cucumber.

    In fairness, Lorna Slater also performed well. Nicola seemed tired (which is understandable).

    • Hamish100 says:

      I take it your labour nae Independence 1 & 2? but keep your distance from tories

      • Union Man says:

        My preference is for devolution max. I won’t change my mind until devo max becomes impossible to achieve.

        I’m sure that we can all agree that Lorna Slater was highly impressive.

        • Jonathan Marshall says:

          Devolution Max doesnt work… Firstly because we would still pay too much for defence compared with like sized European Nations… Have a look at Denmark and compare its defence foot print compared with our defence footprint… they definately get more bang for their buck…. although we definately can wipe ourselves out of existance with the Americans permission of course. Secondly because any foriegn policy mis-adventure that England decided it was jaunting off on we would be dragged into as their is now way in hell England would acccept Scotland Wales or Northern Ireland having the right of veto over them… they wouldnt even accept a majority 3-1 as that would limit them and no-one does that.

          Note I miss out Norway… that has already decide to spend 6 billion on replacing its air force planes we just arent in their league when it comes to managing our resources… because we doen’t manage our resources someone else does! Maybe we should try to do it ourselves for the 50 yrs and see if we could do any better than our Imperial Masters.

        • J Galt says:

          “Devo max” is not on the agenda, it exists only as a mythical carrot to be deployed by the British Establishment at times of crisis.

          Any kind of “devo max” agreed to by the British Establishment would be “devo max” in name only, a kid on for those daft enough to fall for it.

          “Devo max” does not exist and therefore by definition is “impossible to achieve”.

          Status Quo or Independence, time to make up your mind.

        • You have been waiting decades for devomax your parents did too and their parents.
          Devomax isnt coming if you cannot understand that now , you never will.

          You got the VOW , i suppose you are happy with that , even though it was a bundle of lies.
          Tricked again.

        • Devo max would require a redraft of the Scotland Bill in Westminster.

          How, pray tell, do you foresee a mandate for such materialising?

          • Union Man says:

            By returning a Labour government at Westminster.

            A coalition could work. The SNP could prop-up a Labour government in exchange for indyref2 but with devo-max being the third question on the ballot.

            • Alec Lomax says:

              Err..what about SLab’s default position, the Bain Principle.?

            • grizebard says:

              You are in fairy-land, dear chap, whether in one of your own making or ready-made for you by someone else. A Labour government (when, actually?) may well offer a “third option” spoiler, but intended purely as that, not as a serious option. How can you think that any English person will lift a finger to make any of this happen? From high to low, they think this is all a completely unnecessary botheration, an unwanted disturbance to their “rightful state of affairs”, and nothing you or Federal Broon can dream up will change that one iota.

              Anyone who trusts Labour to do anything serious except keep the same old creaking system going, HoL and all, is living a delusion. Its leadership can’t be trusted, and history has already proved that well enough. And they won’t even have the chance to betray us again anytime soon anyway.

            • Doonvalley Lass says:

              Labour has the chance in the Smith Commission yet they were the party who wanted the least powers given to Scotland. Your hopeismisplacd in my view

            • Wilma Bruce says:

              Scotland’s economy will continue to be stifled by the Union. Only an independent Country with its own Sovereign Currency can achieve its full potential. A Country with the resources of Scotland should and would out perform Norway and Denmark. Why is that not happening now? We can only invest in Scotland what is returned to us by WM. Without our own control we will continue to be mediocre.

        • Dr Jim says:

          Devo max is funny isn’t it, England who are an Independent country don’t have devo anything they have total Independence and devolve devo min to the colonies of Scotland Wales and Northern Ireland in the same way as they’ve done with all their overseas colonies for hundreds of years

          Alex Salmond wanted devo max on the ballot paper in 2014 and Cameron knew the people of Scotland would grab it so he shafted Salmond with the ultimate YES NO and Scotland bottled it
          so devo max is a no no and will never be offered, Westminster isn’t daft they know you can’t keep people in prison by allowing easy access to an open gate

          • Union Man says:

            Labour had no say in what questions were posed on the referendum ballot.

            Scotland is not a colony. Scotland together with England colonised the world.

            All of the former U.K. colonies gained their independence from the whole of the U.K. -including Scotland.

            • What colour is the sky in ‘Union Man’s’ world?

              We see no point in these little digs, whoever you are, or are you an algorithm primed to ooze this idiotic nonsense very so often to clog up this site.
              Feck off.

            • Dr Jim says:

              Labout were not in government in Scotland so had no locus in deciding referendums with England at that time, Scotland was pressed into the colonial service of Independent England and Scotland have not been independent since 1707 when England paid money to high placed individuals who were chased through the streets of Edinburgh to a basement building which now stands as a Pizza shop to take the money hence the expression bought and sold for English gold by sic a parcel o rogues in a nation

              This is the shortened version but I think you know all this as you apply the complete untruth that the UK United Kingdoms is or are one country, a thing designated as two can’t be described as united if it’s only one

            • bettybiscuit says:

              @ Union Man. Respectfully, can you PLEASE move on from comments referencing an imperial past, long gone (and good riddance to it.)
              I wasn’t even born when it existed. You’re teetering dangerously on the edge of the ‘two World Wars & one World Cup’ bollocks, much beloved of the brexshit mob and I, for one, am only interested in the here and now, and the better future we can forge together, as a small, Northern European, fully independent nation without grandiose ideas of our place in the world. I want to be well integrated with our good neighbours in the EU and I don’t give a fig for past imperial so-called ‘glories.’

              Devo Max is just another tired, non- existent unicorn, oft vaunted yet still non-existent; no matter how hard you ‘believe’ you will never will it into existence. It’s a mirage camouflaging a snare.

              Indy is the only way we will ever be able to forge our own destiny, regaining close links with the EU and shaking off perpetual Tory rule into the bargain.

              Labour couldn’t even retain its traditionally dyed-in-the-wool Labour strongholds in the North English constituencies, yet you ask us to imagine a Labour majority at Westminster?
              When, exactly? As much as I’d love them to beat the Tories in England, it’s very difficult to imagine that happening for a long time (if ever.)

              I mean no disrespect to you, nor do I doubt your sincerity, but in effect, you’re banking Scotland’s future on Labour getting their shit together in England very quickly and upon a non-existent policy, the mirage that is Devo Max.

              And another thing: Labour want to keep the useless and very expensive nuclear weapons that are thoughtfully parked up Glasgow’s arse.

              will finally allow us to get rid of these obscene, willy-waving money pits, the ‘proportional’ cost of which Blue or Red Westminster so thoughtfully
              ascribe to OUR debt.

              The Tories aren’t the only ones who treat our elected representatives with scorn, Labour are no better in that regard.

    • Realigning to the left in response to Union Man’s reply to me at 3.30; I’m on my phone and the reply window had shrunk to a single character.

      The prospect of a Labour government, propped up by the SNP, alarmed middle England so much they gave Cameron a majority, when a hung parliament was the expect outcome. Helped, in no small part, by Kezia Dugdale operating on behalf of her Blue Tory chums.

      England has since lurched significantly to the right and shows little sign of moving from there. So when can we expect your Labour government? Jeremy Corbyn got more votes in 2015 than Tony Blair did in 2005, but Nick Clegg’s electoral suicide in 2010 ensured a different result.

      I’m not seeing it Union Man.

      • grizebard says:

        Indeed. I believe the Labourite hangouts are “whistling Dixie”. I’m just not sure if they’re basically trying to convince themselves, or are just echoing this stuff by rote, the background noise inside a hollow shell.

      • Sorry, that should read 2017 where I put 2015.

  3. Deliberately avoided last night’s “debate” for three reasons;

    (1) the whole Salmond issue has scunnered me where politics is concerned, just as independence seemed so close, ad I couldn’t bring myself to watch it
    (2) these things annoy me anyway
    (3) I’d rather watch an episode of Brokenwood with my wife, cat (I’m sure she likes it) and a mug of coffee with a biscuit

    It would only angry up the blood.

    • grizebard says:

      Oh, “Brokenwood”, absolutely. Bang on there!

      I recorded last night’s political encounter pro forma, but I’m still not sure I can summon enough interest to actually watch it. BBC JockLand are experts at twisting and sucking the life out of anything like that.

  4. Deliberately avoided last night’s “debate” for three reasons;

    (1) the whole Salmond issue has scunnered me where politics is concerned, just as independence seemed so close, ad I couldn’t bring myself to watch it
    (2) these things annoy me anyway
    (3) I’d rather watch an episode of Brokenwood with my wife, cat (I’m sure she likes it) and a mug of coffee with a biscuit

    It would only angry up the blood 😦

  5. Molly's Mum says:

    I didn’t watch the debate as I am tired of the whole election shebang. Normally I would be too excited to sit down this close to such an important election, doing whatever I could to re-elect the SNP, get a majority & give a big GIRUY to BritNats of all types

    I’ve made my voting decisions, I’m fed up defending them against my own side, the opposing side, men, women, people who call me names, people who wish me dead. Too late peeps, the minute that postal vote arrives I’ll cross the boxes, post it back and see what we get. I’m hoping for independence.

    This is a great post Paul, thank you – I enjoyed reading it. Good luck with your treatment x

    • Consider yourself cuddled, Molly’s mum.
      Sarwar is an inveterate liar, like Carmichael.

      He is a Red Tory, a millionaire who sends his kids to private school, then has the nerve to lie that the education Attainment Gap has widened under the SNP, when it clearly hasn’t.

      This despite (not ‘around a quarter of a million’, voiced over by Glenn ‘Save the Islay Shellfish Industry!’ Campbell voiced over on Distorting Scotland last night ) 320,000 Scots children going to school hungry, living in poverty engineered by Mental Health Willie Rennie, Baroness Rape Clause and Family Man 4 Jobs Linesman Dross and Neil Findlay who are backing the Brit Nat Welfare Cuts of the past 11 years, and obeying their London Masters’ ‘wheesht for Cuts’ Decade to be introduced by Rishi Sunak.
      Dross abstained in the WM motion to extend Free School meals in England but Jack Lamont Bowie and Mundell and Pasta Shapes Duguid voted to starve the poor of England, despite EVEL barring them from the vote.
      The Linesman Dross would starve Scottish children and Sarwar and Rennie would abstain.

      I have read enough on last night’s affront to Scotland.
      What will it take. An armed uprising?

  6. Robert Oliphant says:

    I watched the whole thing!

    The thing that jumped out most to me was that the BBC seriously still think they can still get away with their “balanced audiences”.

    Of the 16 “invited”, only 2 seemed to actually be sympathetic to Independence.

    I would agree that Sarwar didn’t do himself any harm, at one point telling DRoss to grow up!

    Lorna Slater also performed well,
    Nicola Sturgeon I don’t think looked tired, bored more like, she wasn’t ever likely to be troubled by this forum.

    I would have liked someone to ask the 3 Unionists how they would fund their grand plans given the finite Scottish budget, but quelle surprise no-one and certainly not Ms Smith pressed them on that.

  7. Margaret Noakes says:

    Hope hospital app goes well.Lost my “smart” tv connection and then a host of channels disappeared so missed debate as I was trying to follow instructions to get it sorted.Sounds like I did not miss much.F.M. is in a different league from the 3 amigos. From recent polls the zoom audience should have been at least 9:7 pro inde if there were 16 of them.x

  8. Statgeek says:

    I stopped watching the Beeb in 2017 after the T.May election. To be fair, I was down to QT by then and had been since 2015.

    It’s a waste of precious Scottish fresh air and earth’s oxygen. Never again.

  9. Rob Grant says:

    Thanks Paul for your feedback and having the forbearance to sit through it. Glad i couldnt as i told bbc many years ago exactly what they could do with their extortion racket. From what ive read on social media dross lived down to his nickname by his obsession with indy2, Anas putting him in his place by calling him out on his obsession. Nicola and Lorna? came out well by trying, despite sarah’s interuptions, to answer the questions asked. As far as willie is concerned once again he seems to have been the quiet man.
    As an Alba member Im glad Alex wasnt there as he cant be tarnished by his absence. Maybe STV debate will be better, after all by the sounds of it they cant be as dire as Im told.

  10. john mclaughlin says:

    I watched the whole show. I totally agree with Pauls blog. What i cannot understand is the relentless attack of Unionist MPs and MSPs knowing that their vomit causing diatribe is having the reverse effect they crave. Surely someone in Unionist Central is thinking “hang on chaps this is not working”. Many great Posters on WGD have identified this tactic. The democracy deniers have tried everything exept Force in an effort to have our minds re-educated and think the correct way . Sadly they do not get us and are unwilling to understand us. This superior attitude and thinking will destroy their precious union, because no promises ,vow will have any effect . Scotlands eyes are wide open ,and we crave freedom and something distinctly better than we have with Unionism.

  11. Alice says:

    Switched on saw Sarah Smith smirking ….took a deep breath then listened for five more minutes basically for Nicola ….nope couldn’t be done ….who are these awful guys? How dare they even try to represent us in blatant disregard of our right to choose how we may wish to govern ourselves. Just the pits of an anti democratic setup by BBC Scotland….their usual

  12. Capella says:

    I never watch TV but I do watch clips online and the clips I’ve seen show Nicola focused and giving detailed answers to questions – not tired at all. That is remarkable since she had already done a Covid briefing earlier on Tuesday which must have required a lot of preparation as well. On top of her game as always.

    No doubt she is having a rest today, feet up, cup of coffee scrolling through the comments on WGD while Janey does her voice overs.

  13. Capella says:

    BBC being economical with the truth as always. They say that Scotland’s public funding is ‘30% higher’ than England’s but omit to mention that we pay £64 billion to Westminster and get back £34 billion in block grant.

    They also omit social security and employment from the list of reserved powers. They pretend that only defence, foreign policy and immigration are reserved to Westminster, which would be true if we had a federal system. But we don’t

  14. Bob Lamont says:

    A good summary, although I suggest the title “The question the BBC and the Tories don’t want to answer” should have had “so ensure it isn’t asked” tacked on the end.

    Criticisms were flying before it had even finished airing, the setup and Sarah Smith in particular getting pelters, one memorable post posited – “Sarah Smith, the ‘impartial’ chair on tonight’s #BBCLeadersDebate – Like having Arlene Foster referee an Old Firm game”, almost gave the laptop a hot tea overcoat, another “Referee Smith and her Linesman stitch up the game”

    Lesley Riddoch’s critique in the National this morning was a fair if subdued summary, but general comments home in on what was NOT asked, not simply the elephant in the room but a herd of them.

    Good luck tomorrow at the Southern…

  15. Ken says:

    Don’t watch it. Less viewers. Less programmes. They end up talking to themselves anyway.

  16. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Re last night’s debate.

    Sarwar tried to talk a good game …..seemed to be desperate to be perceived by voters as the reasonable and non obsessive Unionist and tried to promote the fact that he was NOT obsessed with constitutional matters like independence…though his past comments betray this statement…as do the words and actions of both him and his political party…both branch office and HQ….he was clearly trying to make a distinction between him and DRoss (second place up for grabs) ……but for those of us with prior knowledge of him and his party we know there IS no distinction between the both of them…especially on independence.

    He promoted the fact (not really) that he was more concerned with the important issues that effects voters ( as dictated by him)….however Brexit funnily enough was not an issue that he chose to list as being important…. strange when it is having such a negative effect upon many of us who live in Scotland ( only Lorna Slater mentioned Brexit i.e. mentioned loss of Erasmus) so he completely failed to highlight/mention Brexit at all…..Sarwar did this because Keir Starmer has abandoned any notion of campaigning to rejoin the EU as Keir prefers to adopt the Boris Johnson’s Tory method of waving Union Jackass’s to show how British he is……

    DRoss , devoid of any imagination or original thoughts, was using the tried and tested Tory method that was over used in the Brexit campaign….by repeating a slogan i.e. ‘Divisive Independence Referendum’ he hopes that for some voters it will register in the same way as some of the Brexit messages registered with the Brexit voting public…as in “Take Back Control”….”Get Brexit Done”……”Leave means Leave” etc…..remember when members of the public were interviewed on TV who were Pro Brexit and then think of how many times you heard them repeat, like parrots, the same slogans/messages that were promoted by Brexiteer politicians…..indeed the only time a recent Tory slogan failed was Theresa May’s Strong and stable slogan used in a GE….a slogan that was (over) used so much by EVERY Tory politician when on the TV that it became too obvious it was but a slogan and was thus ridiculed and exposed as a clumsy and unsubstantiated political slogan to con voters… ……much like the over use of the ‘Tory power stance’ that was also adopted and then ridiculed…..

    I suspect DRoss’s unsubtle use of a negative message will go the same way and will scunner many voters who live in Scotland…. as seems clear he is but a sloganeer first and foremost as he is being very successful in obscuring his lack of policies that he has to offer voters ……though for DRoss policies are unnecessary as he knows they will not be needed as he will never be FM……HQ have told him to continue with operation stop Indy Ref 2…..and as a YES man to HQ he obeys orders…..

    Post Debate last night we saw a two separate tweets from Tory prospective candidates and current politicians, councillors, MSP’s and MP’s, all with the exact same wording in their tweets about how well DRoss performed and how Labour are in decline and too weak to stand up to SNP ……straight out of Vote Leave and Dominic Cumming handbook of how to game the system….classic Tory tactics…..IRobot strikes again…..

    Like many on here my mind will not be swayed by the New New Labour version being presented by Sarwar or will ever be swayed by DRoss the servant of Gove and Tory HQ….as far for Willie Rennie is concerned…well so far in the campaign he has chosen the picture opportunity method of being photographed while seemingly being dwarfed by BIG things as in huge deckchair and a oversized Chess board and pieces…..but this time, so far, he has not donned the infamous Wizard’s outfit…..but he is yet another one who promises much but knows he will never need to deliver as no chance of him being FM either……also much that he moaned about last night as being needed and that should be done by the SNP were things that exist mainly as a result of his party being in coalition with Cameron’s Tory party……..and also turning a blind eye to Tory Brexit.

    Politics is a game played by Unionist political parties……but once you have decided who you will vote for then you no longer need to play THEIR game on THEIR terms…..SNP gets my vote……as only way to get Independence…and when chance comes I will vote YES always.

    • Sublime, NMRM
      62% voted to Remain in EU, spread through all 32 LAs.
      Trade with EU down 40%, SMEs going out of business, fishing and agriculture in Scotland dying, and we are soon to be swamped with sub standard meat and goods from as far away as Brazil and Malaysia, and we Scots are powerless to stop it, unless we retake our country and come out of England’s rogue State.
      Ross Rennie and Sarwar are functionaries of a foreign Government now, attempting to lie and threaten the people of their native land, motivated by Johnson’s ‘greed and capitalism’, cruel purveyors of the Big Lie, that we Scots are better served by allowing 55 million English dictate every aspect of our lives for us, and be grateful that they tolerate our drain on their finances.
      They are beneath contempt.

      Sarah Smith is an Anglo…she has made her fortune fronting the Ministry of Truth for her London bosses.

      Rise up, Scotland, drive the jackals from this land once and for all.

    • bettybiscuit says:

      Thank you, NMRN. You’ve eloquently exposed the Unionist ‘deus ex machina’ that seeks to undermine our push for independence.
      I believe we’re able to withstand their onslaught, in no small part because they’ve nothing to offer and their tactics this time around are noticeably repetitive and threadbare.
      I think that Nicola’s always on top of her briefs and brilliant in debates, but I already know how I’m voting and don’t need to watch these distorted, pro-Union wind-ups. There’s not even an attempt to appear impartial and I don’t feel like shouting at the tv!
      Let’s all hold fast, we’ll get there!

  17. Alba being left out tells a story in itself.
    Then we have newspapers saying NS says to people dont game the system , dhondt is gamed in itself its a game with only one winner British nationalism.
    SNP got around it , only just though , by teaming up with the greens .

    The best opportunity for a majority in the Scottish parliament who are elected to get us Scottish Independence and some people intend to refuse it until a certain person apologises for poor behaviour.

    If we do not get a majority elected who are in favour of Scottish independence we will all look back and wonder who or what has been gamed.

    • Capella says:

      Well it was The Leaders Debate – do we know yet who the leader of Alba is? Or the candidates?

      • Legerwood says:


      • yesindyref2 says:

        As a fun guide for the regional vote total of all Scotland:

        RISE 4,456 Followers – 2016 – 10,911 votes – factor 2.45
        Scottish Greens 59.8K Followers – 2016 – 150,426 votes – factor 2.51
        SNP 309.9K Followers – 2016 – 1,059,898 votes – factor 3.42
        Alba 8,873 Followers – nominal votes at factor 2.5 – 22,183 votes – 2,800 per region
        Alba 8,873 Followers – nominal votes at factor 4.0 – 35,492 votes – 4,500 per region

        Need an approximate bare minimum of 12,000 in a region to get 7th seat.

        Very quick and dirty relation to Twitter of all places, and early days yet.

      • Even if we, or the BBC, knew who to invite Capella, I doubt they’d have had the time to redesign their set. They’ve probably got a spare lectern or two in case of damage, but they wouldn’t have been able to rejig the stage set or the lighting grid in time. Certainly not with Covid spacing adding extra logistical considerations.

        Back in the day, when the Beeb did everything in house, they might have had the flexibility and resources for a quick change, maybe, big maybe. Not now with everything outsourced on a tight brief and a few days notice.

      • Does it matter , it doesnt does it if Scottish independence moves a step closer with 70 or 80 pro indy seats

  18. Scottish independence is forever.
    AS is not
    NS is not
    I am not
    You are not

    Think of the future , think of your children , grandchildren , and beyond , we have their future in our hands .
    Look at all the countries around us who have blossomed on gaining their independence , we will be one of them if we make the correct decision.

  19. Eilidh says:

    Never watched the debate as thought examining the fluff on my carpet was
    a better use of my time. I am glad I didn’t bother. The BBC really are pathetic re their political coverage in Scotland. I am struggling to decide whether to renew my TV licence. Watching a new season of Line of Duty has not been enough to convince me so far. It’s 36 days to the election maybe I should watch the covid briefings on repeat for fun as I fear further tv coverage debates etc. will be just as dire as last night’s seems to have been

    • bettybiscuit says:

      Please ditch the BBC and the license. I did so in 2014 because I was so outraged by their Unionist bias. I must say, I’ve not missed it😉

      • bettybiscuit says:

        PS Much of their excellent dramatic output is available through Netflix and Prime, so I can watch it legally without paying for a license and supporting their horribly biased political stance.

  20. Gregory R Nunn says:

    Assuming that an independent Scotland will want and have freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, the BBC orchestrated propaganda was the best promotion of independence one could expect.

  21. yesindyref2 says:

    Sorry, doing that again as it doesn’t format as a 2nd level reply!

    As a fun guide for the regional vote total of all Scotland:

    RISE 4,456 Followers – 2016 – 10,911 votes – factor 2.45
    Scottish Greens 59.8K Followers – 2016 – 150,426 votes – factor 2.51
    SNP 309.9K Followers – 2016 – 1,059,898 votes – factor 3.42
    Alba 8,873 Followers – nominal votes at factor 2.5 – 22,183 votes – 2,800 per region
    Alba 8,873 Followers – nominal votes at factor 4.0 – 35,492 votes – 4,500 per region

    Need an approximate bare minimum of 12,000 in a region to get 7th seat.

    Very quick and dirty, and early days yet.

      • jfngw says:

        Yeh, proportionally spaced fonts are a pain in the neck when you want to tabulate things.

    • Alex Clark says:

      For comparison, what are the numbers for the Unionist parties in Scotland? I’m curious.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Labour – 48.4K Followers – 435,919 votes – factor 9.0
        LibDems – 15.1K Followers – 119,284 votes – factor 7.9
        Tories – 41.4K Followers – 524,222 votes – factor 12.66

        So Unionists aren’t as much twits as Indy supporters.

        Oh, wait, that didn’t come out right …

        • Alex Clark says:

          Thanks for the info yesindyref2.

          Well, it’s pretty clear then that Independence supporters are much more active on Twitter than Unionists parties supporters. I think we were well aware of that in 2014, quite a massive difference though and the scale of the difference does surprise me.

          • yesindyref2 says:

            Yup. It does confirm that. The SNP did work hard to get on social media, and Greens did the same. Seems to me that being such a new party, Alba would get more awareness on social media than the traditional unionist parties, so they really would have to do a lot better on Twitter and so on.

          • People living in england are not bothered with the subject of Scottish independence it does not interest them they have total control of political matters through westminster.
            english people in scotland nearly all vote against Scottish independence they do not want the discomfort of neighbours colleagues knowing their views so they dont partake in the twitter hostility.
            Its Scottish people living in Scotland those for and those against Scottish independence who discuss it on twitter with a sprinkling of the above.

            • bettybiscuit says:

              I’m English born, of Scottish parents and had been stuck with an English accent by the time we moved back.
              I have to say, the ONLY people in my wider social circle voting for the Union (ALL Tories) are elderly Scots (all three of them.)
              I’ll just add that the only time I’ve ever had stick for my English accent was in England, because it was perceived as ‘posh’, no probs in Scotland. We’re all absolutely solid supporters of Indy, so don’t judge do quickly, if you don’t mind.
              PS I’ve succeeded in persuading one of those three to vote for SNP and Indy!👍🏻

    • raineach says:

      or coming in round about 2% which is what I’m getting from people I know where fewer than 1 in 20 are expressing interest in switching their vote

    • yesindyref2, you are, like Salmond, playing a zero sum game.

      That there is one pro independence ‘pie’, a two tier sponge if you like, that is the sum total of pro Independence voters at Constituent and Regional level is referred to as a ‘zero sum fallacy’.
      Salmond and Alba have joined the fray, with no policies, no candidates, and argue that they ‘deserve’ a slice of the lower tier of the Independence pie, arguing that they and they alone, would produce a ‘supermajority’ that Johnson would not be able to ignore?

      So all the hard work, good governance, and heavy lifting of the SNP and Greens, since Salmond fucked of in 2014, should be edged aside, and Salmond and a rag bag of malcontents get to board their Holyrood Gravy Train?

      Of course, WoS and Grouse Beater and Bell and the rest have spent the past two years lampooning the notion that Johnson would crumble if Scotland voted overwhelmingly for Pro Independence parties.

      Salmond argues that there are no more votes to be had…zero sum…and that he wants some of the Green and SNP sponge..for no effort, on trust, honest we’ll vote SNP 1?

      With the greatest of respect, your sets of figures sets out what is referred to as a zero sum fallacy.

      It relies on there being a finite sized ‘cake’, and Salmond MacAskill, and, no don’t laugh, Tommy Sheridan, will arm wrestle for their share?
      Paul has been tireless on here in reminding us all that it is the soft No’s from 2014 whom we have to win over, to convince, given 7 years of broken vows, Brexit, Johnson, and Cuts, that self determination is the only ‘normal’ future for Scotland.

      If you wish to quote figures, Indyref2, check out Salmond’s personal polling.
      He is poison, marginally less hated than Johnson.

      It not a game, this Independence thing.
      It is certainly not a pie limiting ‘zero sum’.

      Salmond is a vote loser.
      These are the facts.
      Soft Nos are our target, not pandering to the overblown ego of a man who many believe, set the Independence cause back years…

      Alba has been shown to be a big bloated bag of foul smelling wind, IMHO.

      • Dr Jim says:

        Hooray for you Jack

      • yesindyref2 says:

        If those figures turned out to be right, Jack, Alba would get no seats at all, and it would be humiliatingly, excruciatingly, embarrassing for Salmond to have tried and failed by such a large margin – not even as many votes as UKIP got – 46,426 votes.

        There may also be a reverse effect if Alba don’t do well in the polls once they’re included. It’s early days but.

        • grizebard says:

          Early days, but a first poll that shows Alba trailing badly will likely be terminally fatal to their motley hopes. That’s what can happen if, absent any due preparation, you just try to wing it (pardon the pun). Another Salmond rash gamble gone wrong…?

      • grizebard says:

        Alba clearly are playing a zero-sum game, since it’s unlikely they will pull any voters other than ex-SNP ones. Maybe some of those who abandoned indy because of Brexit, and of course the inevitable ex-RISE holdouts, but that’s about it.

        The SNP, on the other hand, isn’t playing a zero-sum game, it clearly wants and needs not only to hold on to what they already have but also to gain as many crossover votes from the Unionist camp (not all necessarily pro-indy) as possible on the strength of the SG’s performance over the last several years, especially this last year.

        Which is the only possible way to win big.

      • Alex Montrose says:

        well said Jack Collatin.

      • bettybiscuit says:

        I used to respect him when I was younger, but I now despise Salmond for this ego driven crap shoot he’s launched at the last moment.
        As I’m in Glasgow by constituency and region, I’m voting Constituency SNP & List Green.
        Alex and his ‘merry’ band of losers can GTF as far as I’m concerned.

        Gaining independence is all I’m concerned about; if these six week wonders damage that aim in any way, I’ll never forgive them. Tossers.

  22. jfngw says:

    Expect a move soon from the BBC, they were always the Ruth Davidson champion but even they must see what a disaster D.Ross is. I fully expect them to start pumping up Sarwar soon, they need a unionist champion, Ross & Rennie just don’t fit the bill.

    They are currently in a quandary about Alba as they aren’t sure who it will damage most.

    • The day after polling closes, Baroness Rape Clause will join Boris Johnson’s Inner Circle of Fascists as Minister for Constitutional Affairs, Vicereine of Scotland, the Golden Goose colony.
      You heard it first on WGD.
      Can somebody look through her bins?
      If we could get a verifiable ‘leak’, say, a few days before the SGE, that would do nicely, thanks.

      • grizebard says:

        I will indeed be very surprised if Baroness Placemat isn’t made Colonial Governor in fairly short order in place of “Union Jack” (who he?), and your timing sounds dastardly enough to be dead right. Shades of EVEL.

        Seems as if DRoss is simply trying to rehearse her old strategy, which gave the Tories some over-trumpeted gains back in the voter-fatigue period of ’16/’17, but now it will be a pathetic flop for which she – very astutely – will have dodged any blame.

        • jfngw says:

          Davidson was an ex-journalist and knew how to deliver a story, D.Ross doesn’t even look like he could successfully deliver a pizza.

          • Dr Jim says:

            Dross does milk and udder things

          • grizebard says:

            She also got her timing right, and saw what some in the indy movement didn’t, that many ordinary people weren’t ready for another indy barney yet, and she offered them a convenient cover alibi that many were very happy to grab. Now ain’t like that. People are having to face up to the consequences of arrogant EngNat Tory mismanagement, whether they like it or not, and DRoss is hardly credible even to his own dedicated voters.

      • Alba Laddie says:

        Which is why this question should be asked now of DRoss, Fraser, et al: “Is Ruth Davidson being lined up as Colonial Governor by her ex-nemesis, now new best friend, Johnson”?

        Play these jokers at their own game.

    • Don’t you think it a little bit suspicious that the Unionist concern trolls (or their dupes) disappeared as of Friday? Now it’s all magical mystery mathematics, vote Alba for a supermajority. We were fielding manufactured grievances for weeks, months; where are they?

      An old cynic, like myself, isn’t discounting the possibility that the concern trolls are now punting Alba as their last, best hope of preventing an indy majority. Or, if they can’t prevent it, make sure it’s as awkward as possible.

      • grizebard says:

        Oh, don’t worry, if Alba begins to look like a damp squib that won’t go off, they’ll be back.

      • bettybiscuit says:

        That’s entirely plausible Drew and thoroughly sickening. They’re hyenas and I’ll not give them the time of day.

  23. Col says:

    Shocking that some parties use TV exposure like this, it’s like they are just gaming the system.

  24. Paddy Farrington says:

    Lorna Slater was impressive in the debate. I’m now seriously thinking of voting Green (rather than SNP) on the Lothians list, depending on what the polls come up with. It would be a shame if Alba were to damage the Greens’ chances. A strong Green presence in the next parliament (whether in coalition with the SNP or not) would provide a welcome radical voice.

    • Paddy Farrington says:

      Well now we know. Alba on 3% according to the recent poll are no threat to the Greens on 11%. Their ‘supermajority’ is dead in the water, but they still have the potential to harm the SNP. So it’ll be both votes SNP for me.

  25. Capella says:

    Rhys Crilley of Glasgow Uni has done an analysis of Alba on Social Media and says the numbers are surprisingly low.

    • Golfnut says:

      Brilliant find, don’t do Twitter so thanks for the link.
      As a long retired marketeer, in their shoes I’d be worried at these stats. They needed a leg up from Nicola and didn’t get it which in part explains the rank comments hurled in her direction.
      Like many on here I don’t believe that westminster is kacking it’s breeks over the Alba party, it suits them to publicly say otherwise, i e Mundells comments and Dross using them as an excuse to game the system but unless the stats change the only potential damage will be to the SNP and the Greens.
      They might get a helping from the media though.

    • ALASTAIR says:

      Well found Capella
      I would be very grateful if you could cut and paste that link over to Scotgoespop. IT skiils not up to it.! Will interesting to see the response.


      • Capella says:

        I can’t post on Scot Goes Pop because it seems to be limited to google accounts and I don’t want to use my personal email one. Sorry.
        They will pick it up soon enough though as I am sure they are avid readers of WGD 🙂

        Or perhaps someone else here can post it?

      • Capella says:

        It’s just been posted on SGP by Unknown 🙂

        • ALASTAIR says:

          That was me
          .Copy and Paste not so difficult after all. But they will need to type in the twitter account

          • Capella says:

            Oh great – I see James is not impressed with the findings 😦

          • grizebard says:

            Well done! JK@SGP’s reaction though is odd, he seems emotionally invested in Alba regardless. (A consequence of too many internal SNP own-goals?) This isn’t the rational blogger we all thought we knew. (No reason to hate-mail him though.) Should be interesting to see how he evolves as more poll evidence accumulates, for whatever that’s worth.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Strangely enough I was just looking at their followers an hour short of 3 days after I posted this on another thread:

      March 28, 2021 at 7:14 pm
      Well, 2 days later, the Scottish Greens have 59,700 followers on twitter, Alba not as many – 7,806

      Current level is 8,890 Followers, so an extra 1,024 in 3 days, 342 a day. That’s in spite of AFI, ISP and Kerevan joining Alba (he has 17.3K Followers on his own) 🙂

      It is surprisingly low, there are surely journos following as well.

      • grizebard says:

        Kerevan joined Alba then? Quelle surprise! {laugh}

      • I will vote SNP and ALBA , im not following ALBA on twitter , no need.
        I reckon many many ALBA supporters will not be following ALBA on twitter.

        • stewartb says:

          Disappointed to learn of your decision SO FAR IN ADVANCE of being able to ‘run the numbers’ based on polling closer to Election Day.

          So your’s is an in-principle decision to vote for Alba regardless of net outcome rather that an objective tactical vote?

          My decision will be based on quantitative modelling outcomes using best available data close to Election Day. I suggest that is the only rationale way to vote tactically.

    • bettybiscuit says:

      Thanks for the link. Honestly, I don’t find that very surprising.

  26. yesindyref2 says:

    I didn’t watch the debate, but here’s the Scottish Tories’ verdict so far:

    Halfway behind bars already, and there’s still 5 weeks to go!

  27. Alex Clark says:

    The Alba party have announced all their candidates that will be standing for the list seats in each region. There are no more surprises and no more SNP MP’s or MSP’s.

  28. yesindyref2 says:

    Well, I just read this at the bottom of the article, thanks WGD.

    A direct link to the Manny Singh crowdfunding page is here:

    Manny now has less tha 10 days to raise the next installment of £5500.

    I was on an Edinburgh and a Glasgow one, least I could do. Anyone who can post it on Wings – please do. Gove him his due he used to support fundraisers like this with a link.

  29. I think scotgoespop is a sensible place for discussion.
    I dont agree with everything there but its a sensible place for discussion.

    However , he has been receiving hate mail from SNP supporters because he has said ALBA will be a welcome addition to the pro independence side.

    • weegingerdug says:

      No one should be receiving hate simply for having an honestly held difference of opinion about the best tactics and strategy to bring about independence

    • Alex Montrose says:

      Kelly has become a cheerleader for the new Alex Salmond Alba party,
      with a ready delete finger for anyone daring to criticise AS or his party.
      he has SNP Bad, Greens Bad and now SNP member Bad posts up,
      However he should not be abused for this.

      • Terence Callachan says:

        Alex Montrose, you are wrong Mr Kelly on scotgoespop does not delete anyone .
        Unless its defamatory

        • Terence Callachan says:

          Mr Kelly said that himself on scotgoespop just the other day

          • Alex Montrose says:

            he’s very fickle Terence, I’ve seen lots of folks asking why he deleted their post.

        • Eilidh says:

          Wrong Terence I posted last week that he had previously said the gaming the list was a mugs game which was fact and my post disappeared within a couple of hours. So much for free speech Yet for months he allowed a certain poster to be exceedingly insulting about another poster and did nothing. I will continue to read his articles but won’t bother posting there again

    • Petra says:

      How can he tell if they are SNP supporters or not?

  30. Macart says:

    All this talk of gaming a system…. Strikes me that if you can and/or could ‘game’ a system. Is it a system you would want? The tories of the blue, red an yellow variety, abuse electoral systems on a regular basis. Have done since, well, forever. Gerrymandering, parachuting well favoured names into safe seats, team ups, voter support (dependent on the issue), dodgy funding/backers. You name it and they’ve done it or been heavily suspected of doing it.

    If there is a system out there they haven’t/couldn’t abuse historically, then they’d create one which they could. (Shrugs)

    I’d hazard that the only way you win (on a personal level), is to vote your conscience. Your life experience/reasoning/common sense and your moral and ethical compass all rolled up into one kinda thing. Whatever else happens, you don’t have to hold either yours or anyone else’s nose. 😎

  31. Statgeek says:

    Got a big folded flyer from the Scottish Tories today. Points worth considering:

    No mention of Brexit at all. Tories obviously not selling it to Scots as an achievement.

    Ruth mentioned throughout, despite going to the Lords.

    Protect NHS, but no mention of the pay increases differences.

    End division, no referendums, endless rice pudding etc.

    Load of pish, if WGD doesn’t mind me saying so on his board. 🙂

    • James Mills says:

      Was there a big Union Fleg on it ? I was surprised that the BBC Leader’s Debate was a fleg-free zone last night .
      Did they not get the memo ?

  32. Terence Callachan says:

    I laughed at the brits abroad living in Spain when interviewed by BBC prior to brexit as they bragged about how they were going to vote LEAVE many of them saying Westminster had to stop foreigners moving into UK and send those already in the UK , back home.
    I remember the english tourists in my hotel in Corfu celebrating the brexit result jumping around on the beach saying about time they were all sent back to their own country.

    • grizebard says:

      Unlike you, Terrible Terry, my heart truly bleeds for them. {wink} Truly bleeds…

      Bertie Armstrong’s little crew will no doubt be next in line. Alas, the consequences for most of the rest of us here (however we voted) aren’t that visible… yet…

    • Bob Lamont says:

      What kills me is the Scum and the Depress making a song and dance over victim “expats” rather than addressing them as they were, “immigrants”, leaving before they were labelled “illegal immigrants”… Not sure how real the cited Spanish Minster was in this one, priceless though it was…

  33. Terence Callachan says:

    Some people have no faith in the Scottish legal system but…

    The High court in Belfast in the 50’s.
    Woman found guilty of murdering her husband.
    Judge dons the black cap and starts on the sentence.
    Takes off the cap and says, ‘I’m going to be lenient due to the fact you’re a widow’.

  34. Alex Clark says:

    It’s no real surprise that all the advocates of a “Plan B” and who believed that the SNP weren’t doing anything to forward the cause of Independence have now in the main, decided to back Alex Salmond and the Alba party.

    Frustration is the reason despite the fact that only in 2020 has support for Independence consistently, or I should more correctly say, mostly indicate that Yes would be the more likely to win. Patience is a virtue, but few “Plan B” advocates have it.

    • grizebard says:

      I’m sure that’s a significant factor, but there’s evidently also a (potentially overlapping) leftist group who are ideologically opposed to SNP policies such as full EU membership. The likes of Sheridan, Kerevan and maybe McEleny also, for example.

      (Though maybe since the SNP is a broad church, that is just another form of the same impetuosity filter.)

    • Dr Jim says:

      Yeah because in plan B land a mandate means you’re going to win a referendum

  35. Terence Callachan says:

    advocates of a “Plan B” and who believed that the SNP weren’t doing anything

    I am not one of these
    But i am giving my vote to ALBA

  36. Terence Callachan says:

    So if you are english and you live in Scotland you will be alright if you want to watch englands world cup match live tonight
    Because its live on Scottish tv ….STV

    If you are Scottish and you live in Scotland you are NOT alright if you want to watch Scotlands world cup match live tonight
    Because it is on SKY sports for which you will have to pay at least £30 a month

    The broad shoulders of UK
    The british media

  37. robert alexander harrison says:

    This is how desperate the English rule factions like the BBC are getting they are so backed into a corner because of there hostile nature to the snp and the cause of Scottish independence because they are like the 3 there last night another English rule faction it was shown beyond doubt with the green supporter saying that they just want us ruled by london Sarah smith was quick to change subject there the coward she is.

    They run away from the truth when its in there face like a mirror.

  38. grizebard says:

    Since the existential question of the coming election is undoubtedly “a referendum: to be or not to be?”, as DRoss yesterday in his own obsession made abundantly clear, and since polls for ages have put support on both sides of that question to be fairly-evenly divided across the country, would any neutral observer of the BBC-selected questions yesterday evening believe that in total they were fairly and reasonably commensurate with that evident situation…?

  39. Jack Collatin says:

    I know, Paul, I am losing it the longer the day goes on, and the trolls are getting to me.
    Below is a snapshot of reality for a million of our Fellow Scots…
    The Welfare and Pensions Uprating which kicks in tomorrow..

    Benefits Uprating
    Attendance Allowance
    Attendance Allowance Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Higher rate 89.15 89.60 45p increase from April
    Lower rate 59.70 60.00 30p increase from April
    Bereavement Benefit Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Widowed Parents Allowance 121.95 122.55 60p from April

    Carer’s Allowance Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Carer’s Allowance 67.25 67.60 35p increase from April

    Dependency increases
    Adult dependency increases for spouse or person looking after children
    Dependency increases Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Long-term Incapacity Benefit 66.30 66.65 35p increase from April
    Unemployability Supplement 67.25 67.60 35p increase from April
    Severe Disablement Allowance 39.75 39.95 20p increase from April
    Short-term Incapacity Benefit (over state pension age) 63.80 64.10 30p increase from April
    Short-term Incapacity Benefit (under State Pension age) 51.65 51.90 25p increase from April

    Disability Living Allowance
    Disability Living Allowance care component Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Highest 89.15 89.60 45p increase from April
    Middle 59.70 60.00 30p increase from April
    Lowest 23.60 23.70 10p increase from April
    Disability Living Allowance mobility component Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Higher 62.25 62.55 30p increase from April
    Lower 23.60 23.70 10p increase from April

    Therer are many many more rates, which can be accessed on the Gov(e) web site.

    This is how Sarwar Dross and Rennie are going to build back better from the disastrous Brxit that must never be mentioned especially on a Leaders’ Debate, especially BBC Plantation Quay broadcasts.
    The BoE forecasts 2% inflation because of Brexit, SMEs are folding, tens of thousands are to lose their jobs, GDP in to dip by 4.5% Brexit points, and the GMB Rep has advised our nurses to reject a 4% pay offer…just’s the Bad SNP, and GMB Negotiating Team are staunch Brit Nat Yoons…

    A million Scots get doled out coppers to face yet another year of Sarwar Dross and Rennie Brit Nat cuts so that their serialk Womaniser Leader can build back better for the rich, the entitled, and the heartless.
    Someone in receipt of Lower Rate Disability Benefits is getting an extra 10p a week.
    Where are you leaders of the Kirk, chapel and synagogue?
    They are killing our fellow citizens by stealth.
    Hence my rudeness, Paul.
    This isn’t some sort of sniggering joke, as some, I’d submit, treat the fate of so many of our citizens on here.

    • grizebard says:

      “…the disastrous Brxit that must never be mentioned” Oh, indeed. Not least from the FibDems, who in that respect have now abandoned the last shreds of whatever policies they once proudly stood for. I predict a well-merited collapse in that lot’s vote count this time. Even their most dedicated former voter can’t be that unware of their total capitulation.

      Come over to the light side, dear former LibDem voter, if you still care about what you have always believed in. You won’t actually find the SNP a bad fit, and you will no longer feel slightly soiled after you’ve cast your vote as you surely have been lately. Just think: you will no longer have to be embarrassed by the Gurning Man and that incompetent Coal-Scuttle.

  40. Jack Collatin says:

    I know, Paul, I am losing it the longer the day goes on, and the trolls are getting to me.
    Below is a snapshot of reality for a million of our Fellow Scots…
    The Welfare and Pensions Uprating which kicks in tomorrow..

    Benefits Uprating
    Attendance Allowance
    Attendance Allowance Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Higher rate 89.15 89.60 45p increase from April
    Lower rate 59.70 60.00 30p increase from April
    Bereavement Benefit Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Widowed Parents Allowance 121.95 122.55 60p from April

    Carer’s Allowance Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Carer’s Allowance 67.25 67.60 35p increase from April

    Dependency increases
    Adult dependency increases for spouse or person looking after children
    Dependency increases Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Long-term Incapacity Benefit 66.30 66.65 35p increase from April
    Unemployability Supplement 67.25 67.60 35p increase from April
    Severe Disablement Allowance 39.75 39.95 20p increase from April
    Short-term Incapacity Benefit (over state pension age) 63.80 64.10 30p increase from April
    Short-term Incapacity Benefit (under State Pension age) 51.65 51.90 25p increase from April

    Disability Living Allowance
    Disability Living Allowance care component Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Highest 89.15 89.60 45p increase from April
    Middle 59.70 60.00 30p increase from April
    Lowest 23.60 23.70 10p increase from April
    Disability Living Allowance mobility component Rates 2020 to 2021 (£) Rates 2021 to 2022 (£)
    Higher 62.25 62.55 30p increase from April
    Lower 23.60 23.70 10p increase from April

    Therer are many many more rates, which can be accessed on the Gov(e) web site.

    This is how Sarwar Dross and Rennie are going to build back better from the disastrous Brxit that must never be mentioned especially on a Leaders’ Debate, especially BBC Plantation Quay broadcasts.
    The BoE forecasts 2% inflation because of Brexit, SMEs are folding, tens of thousands are to lose their jobs, GDP in to dip by 4.5% Brexit points, and the GMB Rep has advised our nurses to reject a 4% pay offer…just’s the Bad SNP, and GMB Negotiating Team are staunch Brit Nat Yoons…

    A million Scots get doled out coppers to face yet another year of Sarwar Dross and Rennie Brit Nat cuts so that their serialk Womaniser Leader can build back better for the rich, the entitled, and the heartless.
    Someone in receipt of Lower Rate Disability Benefits is getting an extra 10p a week.
    Where are you leaders of the Kirk, chapel and synagogue?
    They are killing our fellow citizens by stealth.
    Hence my rudeness, Paul.
    This isn’t some sort of sniggering joke, as some, I’d submit, treat the fate of so many of our citizens on here.

    • Oops, but probably worth repeating.

    • Jack Collatin , who on here treats the fate of our citizens as some sort of sniggering joke ?
      Have to say i have never seen anything like that here.

      I think most people in Scotland have sympathy for people who have to live on social security benefits.
      The problem with some of the benefits you list here is that they are paid to very wealthy people who in my opinion should not receive them.
      For example DLA and AA , millionaires receive them , the money should go to those who need it.

      Same with child benefit, millionaires receive it , although there is a mechanism for recouping child benefit you claim it if your yearly income is over 60 or 70k

      • James Mills says:

        In fairness Universal Benefits are cheaper to distribute – they avoid much of the bureaucracy which is required to differentiate between those eligible and the rest.
        That way there is more in the pot for Boris and his pals to redistribute to the ‘deserving rich and the undeserving rich’ .

      • Terence, that’s ok then. If millionaires are getting it, punish the poor.
        The same old Trotsky Socialist argument…means test everything…

        So 10p a week it is…I mention the million Scots living in Red Blue and Yellow poverty…
        In Jan 2011, George Osborne put together the Austerity Package for the decade..cut welfare pensions and sickness benefits, sack 500,000 civil servants, cut LA grants and spending, and give the Filthy Rich a 5% tax cut ; they all voted for it. Osborne Ball and Danny Alexander. Cameron Clegg and Miliband.
        120,000 UK citizens died of poverty according to the UN in the five years’ Coalition of Clegg and Cameron…Willie Rennie declared it a success on the floor of Holyrood in tackling the UK debt…

        The real issues which are crowded out on here in recent Alba days posts, about Federalism, Salmond the Great Leader, and so on.

        To describe Anas Sarwar as a Socialist is an affront to democracy.
        Rennie defies gravity…and Dross is a disaster expected to happen by his Boss Johnson.

        Millionaires pay six figures in taxes…I doubt that they are claiming 10p a week…

        Perhaps we should install an electric meter on the lamp post outside Filthy Rich Houses?
        Means testing is designed to humiliate our poorest citizens, hence the push, and no’ before time, for a UBI.

    • Capella says:

      Wow! Increases of 10p, 25p, 35p. What largesse! But surely the country can’t afford it. We have Boris’s mistresses to pay for.

  41. Petra says:

    Ballot Box Scotland:- ”New Scottish Parliament poll. Find Out Now 23 – 26 Mar (changes vs 2016 Election):


    SNP ~ 42% (nc)
    Con ~ 21% (-2)
    Lab ~ 16% (-3)
    Grn ~ 11% (+4)
    LD ~ 5% (nc)
    RUK ~ 2% (+2)


    SNP ~ 50% (+3)
    Con ~ 21% (-1)
    Lab ~ 17% (-6)
    LD ~ 5% (-3)
    Grn ~ 4% (+3)
    RUK ~ 1% (+1)


    Lesley Riddoch:- ‘Why BBC were the real losers at Scottish leaders’ debate.’

  42. Golfnut says:

    Just popped in say goodnight, Jack having a good old rant. On FB most of tonight and I have to say our new Alba ” allies ” are beginning to sound a lot like ” better together ” when they don’t get their own way and they’re not.

    • I’ll let you be in my dream if I can be in yours. Bob Dylan.
      May you awake refreshed and ready for the rest of your life, Golfnut.

      We go on to the real issues now that Salmond has had his fifteen minutes of fame.

  43. Potter says:

    Magic, ALBA Party have a new supporter…..Nigel Farage

    • Petra says:

      George Galloway seems to be in favour of Alba too 🙄. Nigel, Stu and George alone should tell us all that the game’s a bogie and to avoid the party like the plague.

      And I’m not one for reading the Telegraph but if can be used on other so-called pro-independence sites when the article promotes their agenda then maybe we should be promoting it too.

      Daniel Sanderson, Telegraph:- ”Pro-independence cranks, bloggers and SNP outcasts flock to Salmond’s Alba banner. Former First Minister hails ‘thrilling’ candidate list but opponents say he has been left ‘scrambling around in the dirt’ for supporters.”

  44. GerryC says:

    Can’t recall if I’ve posted here before, but I’ve been a keen follower of your blog, Paul. Glad to see you’re on the mend and that you’ve managed to find a more suitable house.
    I’m gonna wait before deciding where my 2nd vote goes. It’s either SNP or Greens.
    I’m disgusted with AS and not at all impressed at his antics.
    The TV debate only confirmed that Dross is another useless Tory who is a good recruiting sergeant for the Indy cause. Get him on TV every day. What a nasty piece of work.
    Lorna Slater came over very well and Nicola rose above the jibes from Dross.
    BBC Shortbread have treated us with contempt. The working atmosphere there must be horrendous. All of the senior staff must be bricking it; their jobs are surely gone after Indy. They are in desperate position of their own making. Hell mend them.

    • Old Pete says:

      Agree with you 100%, BBC are so biased but they will suffer for this come Independence.
      SNP votes in both the constituency and list in the south of Scotland. We just can’t aford to lose any seats, the south of Scotland seems to have a lot of unionist/ loyalist voters and the nearer you get to the border the more there are ?
      So where I live Siobhain Brown SNP needs every vote available to beat Old Tory John Scott.

  45. Potter says:

    Oh dear, Salmond just got roasted on Radio 4, this man is going to serious damage to the cause of Independence.

    • raineach says:

      Not to the cause of Independence, although he was caught out on a couple of obvious questions. He did his own party no favours, but that doesn’t harm either Green or SNP and perhaps sets up the possibility that Alba [I do wish he would learn how to correctly pronounce the word] will simply accomplish nothing either good or bad

    • Alex Clark says:

      The Independent have an article reporting on the Radio 4 interview with Alex Salmond.

  46. malkymcblain says:

    Ally McCoist rumoured to be in the new Scotland together party for independence! Just launched…

    Me thinks this is Bella’s April fools day…I hope

  47. malkymcblain says:

    Bella article by someone called Joe King. Very original 😂

    • I was fleetingly tempted to construct an April Fools Day post, Malky, my antipodean friend.

      Even ran through the tried and trusted pseudonyms of hoaxes long gone, when people actually enjoyed the camaraderie of a work place, pre zero hours slave wage servitude.
      ‘Hugh Jarce’ was an old dependable, as were ‘Dolf Yasolla’, and ‘Olaf Pirlo’, for the crossword fanatics amongst you Duggers.

      There seems to be a ‘Fools’ Day’ in existence across the globe since time immemorable…You can get lost for hours on Google tracing its origins.

      In France and Spain it is referred to as ‘Fish Day’, with the victim having a paper fish deftly pinned to their back.
      Bertie Armstrong should check his back today.
      His Fools’ Day seems to have extended to Fools Year?

      Until 12.00 noon of course, when most hoaxers put their victims out of their misery and inform them that because they are over 50, they are not legally obliged to take an advanced level driving test to continue using their pride and joy company Audi.

      As I write, I look out at the Camellia Bush in my front garden.

      The morning sun is dazzling, and magically the bush has burst into bloom.

      A sure sign that Spring is here, the earth is warming up (in a good sense) and there is the promise of long summer days ahead.

      It is no wonder that societies around the globe get a little light headed and mischievous.

      Those who can, I invite you to access youtube and belt out Vivaldi’s ‘Spring’ from his Four Seasons piece.
      Inspiring, uplifting, positive.

      On the other hand the prankster, the wee devil in us, would youtube Stravinsky’s Rites of Spring, which caused riots when introduced to audiences at the Fin De Siecle…Pagan dances, sacrificing virgins to the gods….Punk before its time.

      Nowadays we have Trump’s Fake News, Fox TV, BBC Scotland, and a daily deluge of lies from Johnson, the Brit Nat Jocks, and the Dead Tree Scrolls.
      We just seem to accept that they lie, and somehow, we accept this, and no one gets sacked.

      The BBC ran an April Fools in the late ‘fifties featuring a Spaghetti Farm where strands of spaghetti were being harvested from spaghetti plants..
      They panicked when viewers inundated the switchboard enquiring where they could buy spaghetti plants.
      So there is nothing new about discovering how gullible some people can be.

      April Fools used to be fun, a break from the drab grey misery of Winter Past. Not any more.
      Real life is dominated by Fools 365 days a year.

      BTW, Malky as a Through and Through Blue, I’m sure that you are delighted that Nikla has awarded all those Gers EBT Players one off grants to pay the tax man their back tax.

      Not in the slightest bit funny.
      Have great day, sir.

      • malkymcblain says:

        It’s a fine and sunny autumn Good Friday morning here in Sydney Jack and I have woken as fresh as can be expected considering my part in the demise of at least 5 pints of Young Hendry’s brand IPA at my local the lord Hopetoun which is within staggering distance of my home. The pub was named for Lord Hopetoun a colonial governor of NSW and a Scot. His other legacy to Australia is the Hopetoun cup a rugby trophy which is contested by Scotland and Australia every 3 years. The trophy currently resides at Murrayfield.

        The autumnal weather means that my gardenias are not in bloom as yours are. I have some heavy pruning to do in preparation for the coming winter where we can expect temperatures of 10 to 15 C. The Mediterraneanesq climate of Sydney is another reason that keeps me here in the antipodes. I try to get home to Scotland in July or August every three years and had planned to make the trip this year but it seems that Covid will prevent my boarding of the Emirates flight to Glasgow this year so I will delay until I know when Independence Day falls in Scotland. I will book the flight then. The other problem I have is that my maroon EU passport is about to expire so I will need to use my Aussie one and ironically get a tourist visa to visit my homeland. There’s no way I’m going to pay good money for a Brexit blue passport. I look forward to the day I can apply for a Scots passport fully adorned with the thistle and unicorn in a bonny shade of saltire blue or EU maroon.

        Do you remember Arthur Montford’s rubber shafted golf club released on April 1 1978ish or the plan to build a revolving restaurant on the top of Ben Nevis complete with an internal lift shaft bored through the mountain circa April 1 1980?

        I have a good friend here in Sydney called Calum Murray. He’s a Celtic supporter and we call him squid hoops. Think about it. I haven’t seen him for a few weeks I hear he has been a wee bit of a sick squid. I’ll get ma coat.

        Respect to you and your ever loving sir as well as a greeting to all of the duggers fighting the good fight. Your efforts are being recognised the world over and I thank you all. I wish I could do more.


        • malky, good to hear that you are ‘surviving’
          I have Sister in Law ‘stuck’ in Singapore who is based in Sydney, but has a place in Cairns also.

          She was caught on a detached duty post (Elec Engineer IT ) when the lock down hit the globe.

          I renewed my passport last year but managed to get one of the old maroon EU stock..

          Like you, and millions of others, roll on the day when we can apply for Scotland’s Passport.

          Yes I remember the classic Arthur Montford spoof and the revolving restaurant atop Ben Nevis.
          There was quite a ‘stramash’ to use a ‘Montfordism’.

          I wonder if the SFA have preserved Old Arthur’s sports jacket in their Hall of Fame?

          ‘Winter’ of 10-15 C?

          That’s practically roastin’ back home, as you know.

          Stay safe, you and yours; when you’re back home, we’ll meet surely, and kill dead things over some light liquid refreshment.

          Scottish Cup week end here…Roll on the football stadia opening up again.

          Slainte, Jack C..

      • malkymcblain says:

        My longer reply went into moderation Jack. Hopefully Paul will release it soon when he sees it…if he sees it if not I’ll copy paste it and try again later. All the best.

      • malkymcblain says:

        It’s a fine and sunny autumn Good Friday morning here in Sydney Jack and I have woken as fresh as can be expected considering my part in the demise of at least 5 pints of Young Hendry’s brand IPA at my local the lord Hopetoun which is within staggering distance of my home. The pub was named for Lord Hopetoun a colonial governor of NSW and a Scot. His other legacy to Australia is the Hopetoun cup a rugby trophy which is contested by Scotland and Australia every 3 years. The trophy currently resides at Murrayfield.

        The autumnal weather means that my gardenias are not in bloom as yours are. I have some heavy pruning to do in preparation for the coming winter where we can expect temperatures of 10 to 15 C. The Mediterraneanesq climate of Sydney is another reason that keeps me here in the antipodes. I try to get home to Scotland in July or August every three years and had planned to make the trip this year but it seems that Covid will prevent my boarding of the Emirates flight to Glasgow this year so I will delay until I know when Independence Day falls in Scotland. I will book the flight then. The other problem I have is that my maroon EU passport is about to expire so I will need to use my Aussie one and ironically get a tourist visa to visit my homeland. There’s no way I’m going to pay good money for a Brexit blue passport. I look forward to the day I can apply for a Scots passport fully adorned with the thistle and unicorn in a bonny shade of saltire blue or EU maroon.

        Do you remember Arthur Montford’s rubber shafted golf club released on April 1 1978ish or the plan to build a revolving restaurant on the top of Ben Nevis complete with an internal lift shaft bored through the mountain circa April 1 1980?

        I have a good friend here in Sydney called Calum Murray. He’s a Celtic supporter and we call him squid hoops. Think about it. I haven’t seen him for a few weeks I hear he has been a wee bit of a sick squid. I’ll get ma coat.

        Respect to you and your ever loving sir as well as a greeting to all of the duggers fighting the good fight. Your efforts are being recognised the world over and I thank you all. I wish I could do more.


  48. Dr Jim says:

    Hairdressers in England complain there’s no money for them under the Barnett formula and why is it Scotland Wales and Northern Ireland get the money they work for

  49. Alex Clark says:

    BBC report of the Gary Robertson interview with the FM on GMS this morning.

  50. gullaneno4 says:

    It was actually four unionist supporters against two independence supporters in the studio.

    Sahara Smith does not seem to have any self awareness at all and nobody in the production team seems capable of correcting her.
    First three questions asked just made me realise what a shameless and corrupt institution the UK union is.

    As for DRoss, did anyone expect any better, what a numpty.
    Labour and Greens did OKish.

    • Dr Jim says:

      While not particularly a Green party fan this Green woman deserves a seat in our parliament, she knows what she’s talking about and she’s an engineer, these are the kind of folk we want working for us

      • Capella says:

        I agree. In fact I’m reconsidering my opposition to the Greens after Patrick Harvie’s sterling performance in the VONC and Lorna Slater’s performance in the debate, which I haven’t seen but read about.

        Also, this video is a detailed examination of the effects of voting SNP x 2, SNP1 Green 1, SNP1 Other party 1 etc in Central Region.

        Caveat – it is based on 2016 numbers and it was made by a Green supporter. Nevertheless, it is worth thinking about as we get closer to May 6th and have polling data. DEPENDNG ON WHICH REGION YOU ARE IN.

  51. Capella says:

    MSM Monitor have posted the clip from Gary Robertson’s “smear and muckraking” interview with Nicola Sturgeon this morning. I must admit I haven’t listened to it – 16 mins – because there’s a limit to how much of the unionist garbage I can listen to, even for monitoring purposes.

    Might get round to it later. Does anyone else find themselves listening to less and less BBC as time goes on?

    • And now for the vital Public Heqalth Covid Update that BBC Scotland has scrapped because Droos Sarwar Rennie and their London bosses forbid because it is sounding too much like encouraging news from an SNP Government.

      Scottish numbers: 31 March 2021
      542 new cases of COVID-19 reported
      28,144 new tests for COVID-19 that reported results – 2.1% of these were positive
      6 new reported death(s) of people who have tested positive
      21 people were in intensive care yesterday with recently confirmed COVID-19
      237 people were in hospital yesterday with recently confirmed COVID-19
      2,463,069 people have received the first dose of the Covid vaccination and 354,756 have received their second dose.
      Also, Sarwar was allowed to get away with his ‘Cancer victim refused treatment in Scotland and had to go to london to get an op’, lie on BBC TV>
      The truth being that the london hospital is the only hospital in the UK able to perform the surgery goes unspoken by the chair The Hon Sarah Smith.

      There is No Point to BBC Jockland ,Capella. It is a murky little Propaganda outlet for the Elite.
      It’s getting so that unless your name is a combination of Kirsty, Kirsteen, or Kirsten, or a character from a Walter Scott novel, like Fiona, or Catriona, don’t apply to BBC Jockland for a job.
      That Kaye Adams is foisted on the public for three hours every morning must rank as broadcasting sadistic cronyism at its worst.
      We are the only country in the developed world without its own broadcasting system.

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Hi Jack well said…re Sarwar/Starmer’s new new Labour…..aka branch division of Tory party.

        Lisa Nandy has said “that she is set to outline a vision of how patriotism can help Britain to “rediscover a confident, outward-looking approach to the world” and Labour would put “the British people and our shared values back at the heart of foreign policy”:

        Starmer said ” Vaccine passports go against British instincts”.

        Starmer has now also said ” There is no case for rejoining the EU”.

        Basically Labour are now finally going public that they share Tory (lack of) values, Tory (lack of) principles and Tory policies…….and love flags…or to be more precise a SPECIFIC flag.

        What was that line from Animal Farm again “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which”……a line that could be adapted re the Tory party..Labour party…and voters…..

        So….The Voters outside looked from Labour party to Tory party, and from Tory party to Labour party, and from Labour party to Tory party again, but already it was impossible to say which was which……

        • Well observed, NMRN.
          Orwell and Huxley must be spinning in their graves like protons crashing together in CERN’s Large Hedron Collider, so often are the predictions in 1984, Animal Farm, and Brave New World, cited these days to highlight the Descent into Madness into which the Western World has descended since Thatcher, Blair, Regan, Bush Jnr, Cameron and his Big Society, Farage, Johnson, and Trump, and Galloway on ‘Reality’ TV, Anne Widdicombe and Baroness Rape Clause on HIGNFY, .and sugar free Irn Bru.

          Boris Johnson is portrayed as a figure of fun by the Establishment comedians…the metro audiences laugh like drains, but somehow, he survives.
          I argued before that the now well established stable of Brit stand Up performers are highly paid buffers between the Right Wing Oligarchy who control England and their last colony, Scotland, and perpetuate the Fascist Iron Heel, because they are a right laugh, aren’t they?
          Caligula offered the masses Christian versus the lions, the BBC Ian Hyslop Old Etonian ‘satirising’ Old Etonian graft and corruption.
          Flashman taking on the Fat Owl of the Remove.
          Nothing changes..bring on the next BBC ‘Period Drama’, where Lord and Lady are in the Drawing Room having tea, the son and heir is rogering the scullery maid, and cook is in the kitchen making 4 and twenty blackbirds in a pie, the Empire is mighty, and god saves the queen.

          Mass hysteria and brainwashing of Branch Davidian madness
          Hence the Red Wall xenophobic Brexit Tory aberration.
          It will get worse. Time we left them to it.

          • Not-My-Real-Name says:

            “Nothing changes..bring on the next BBC ‘Period Drama’, where Lord and Lady are in the Drawing Room having tea, the son and heir is rogering the scullery maid, and cook is in the kitchen making 4 and twenty blackbirds in a pie, the Empire is mighty, and god saves the queen”

            Jack that “rogering the scullery maid” made me laugh so hard….however tis all true…actually BBC Drama aside…..your above paragraph is factual as to how it really was….read any Novels of that time and they will bear witness to that …….. class entitlement has always existed and different standards and punishments are applied dependent on class….and race…..also you should read what , in these novels, they thought about ‘foreigners ‘…… Bwitish xenophobia that liberal minded Remainers now pretend , via Brexit, is a phenomenon alien to true supposed Bwitish values ……and of course this is all Jacob Rees Mogg’s vision of Gweat Bwitain in the future………….the UKnotOK is governed by a tag team of Tits..for sure.

            Have a nice day Jack


            • Yet again we turn to Orwell, NMRM, who wrote a piece; ‘ Boys’ Weeklies’, analysing the By Jingo Imperial Right Wing public school elitism of the Gem and the Magnet and the ‘Tuppenny Bloods, The Wizard, The Hotspur, The Adventure, published by DC Thomson, the Dundee Giants, into which dynasty, it is remarked without further comment, Jenny Marra, ex New Labour MSP, is married.
              I recommend it highly.

              Orwell expands the theme on British Empire Oligarchy brainwashing of youngsters between the wars.

              Foreigners are categorised thus.

              “Frenchman: Excitable. Wears beard, gesticulates wildly.

              Spaniard, Mexican, etc.: Sinister, treacherous.

              Arab, Afghan, etc.: Sinister, treacherous.

              Chinese: Sinister, treacherous. Wears pigtail.

              Italian: Excitable. Grinds barrel-organ or carries stiletto.

              Swede, Dane, etc.: Kind-hearted, stupid.

              Negro: Comic, very faithful.”

              Nothing has altered in the past 61 years; note the ironically condemned ‘white(sic) wash’ Report on Racial Discrimination in Yesterday HMG report.

              When Cameron, Johnson, Osborne, and Hyslop were at Eton, all those years ago, I doubt that the above attitudes to Johnny Foreigner had changed much. Echoes of Johnson’s ‘piccaninnies’.

              In the past few weeks I have witnessed Marr, Robertson, and Geissler express surprise by declaring ‘Yikes!’, ‘Crickey!’, and ‘Crumbs!’, during broadcasts.

              Expletives straight out of Bunter’s Greyfriars.
              I’d bet the house that they were reared on stories from the Wizard Hotspur and Adventure when they were lads.
              Enough already, I smell delicious toast from the kitchen..I fear that my Everlovin’ is fattening me up for the pot.
              Bisous, NMRM.

          • Dr Jim says:

            You paint a great picture Jack, when’s it on I wanna watch it

        • Dr Jim says:

          They’re a funny bunch aren’t they, I’m all for patriotism that’s why I’m a patriotic Scotsman which is my country, the problem for the British Nationalists is they seem to have lost their patriotism towards their own country of England with the invention of a political symbol and demand patriotic allegiance to that

          Didn’t they used to say they disagreed with the German guy who did that

    • Dr Jim says:

      The FM still did him in despite his duck quacking interference

    • Macart says:

      I’m afraid I haven’t listened to them for several years now. Chucked the habit prior to the first indyref when they cut comments on the BBC Scotland site and started chucking (see under promoting sideways) folk that were critical of establishment political figures.

    • Capella says:

      Radio 3’s quite tolerable. – very little talk and most of the composers are foreigners 🙂

      The Daily Covid briefing is just about the only thing on RScotland I still listen to. Most of the programming is someone sitting playing records and I can do that myself. The talk is terrible.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      It was not an interview rather than an abysmal example of harassment technique with zero interest in getting answers to what the public want to know, as opposed to what HMS Sarah Smith want the public to learn.
      Gary even dragged the BBC’s bizarre poll into it, all pretty awful, more to come undoubtedly…

    • jfngw says:

      Varies depending on content, I try and avoid BBC News and current affairs (if that phrase is even in vogue now), still watch some drama, documentaries and the odd quiz show to see how much I have forgotten. Started watch the STV news but it just looks like a channel with no money, as it more or less frozen out of providing programmes to the ITV cartel I can’t really see much of a future for it. Never listen to Radio Scotland, still listen to Ken Bruce in the morning on Radio 2 (it’s mostly records though).

  52. efta is the way forward

    • grizebard says:

      A wee bit of Alba leg-pulling again. You just can’t help yourself, can you? {sigh} But it’s after 12:00, so you’re too late with the joke. (Maybe after that first inclusive poll comes out, you’ll finally leave us in peace.)

      • no, i think rejoining the customs union and the single market as soon as possible is imperative if we want to save our food and drinks industry from complete annihilation from brexit. the quickest way to do that is to join efta. it is a policy for the indy campaign that all should back.

        • grizebard says:

          It’s one thing, post-independence, to pragmatically re-connect with our neighbours in the most expedient manner possible, I don’t disagree, but to go into an election campaign whose prime purpose is to progress independence, and whose very casus belli for a new referendum being the people of Scotland being taken out of the EU (note that) against their express will, by saying in effect that it’s all quite irrelevant, and “we’ve got a shiny new plan of our own, folks” that nobody has actually asked for, or even wants, is just plain daft. It’s the electoral equivalent of sawing off the branch you’re sitting on.

          But you know that, and don’t care anyway. You’re well-matched to Alba. Diversion central.

          • we’ve got a shiny new plan of our own, folks” that nobody has actually asked for, or even wants,

            the 62% remain vote explicitly mandates nicola to rejoin the cu/sm without the need for another eu referendum

            rejoining as an eu member will take time, time that our food and drinks industry simply doesnt have.

            the mandate from the people of scotland was for a deal with the eu which no longer exists. rebate, the 4 exemptions etc are gone.

            what ever terms are agreed between scotland and the eu for us to become eu members will need to be voted on by the people.

            eg, if nicola wants to join the euro, as i do, the 62% remain vote in scotland does not give her the mandate to do so.

            indyref2 is about scotlands independence and its ability to chose its own future. not wether we want to be a republic, or be an eu member or becoming a carbon neutral economy etc no matter how desirable these options are, no matter how many times people try to attach their cause celeb to indyref2,

            indyref2 is about scotland being independent and able to chose its own future. nothing more

            • grizebard says:

              Given that last sentence, why bother then to raise these red herrings at this stage?

              The euro thing, in particular, being a favourite distractional ploy of – guess what? – the Brexiteer tendency (the Alba target base perhaps?). Carefully omitting the reality that you actually need your own stable currency first! (And can avoid joining the euro indefinitely thereafter.) This is a hoary old BBC-style straw man we don’t need right now, so why resurrect it?

              As I already said, but you seem to have ignored, there’s no quibble about how the first sovereign government of Scotland will have to pragmatically scope out how to progress back into European relationships as rapidly as possible.

              But.that’ It’s not on anyone’s radar except probably UKIP, and they’re irrelevant. That’s for when we’re free to choose, when such things will matter.

              Currently it’s no more than a diversion, a loss of focus, an unnecessary rabbit hole that won’t help – but could hinder – winning this crucial election.

              Much more productive to focus instead on what has indisputably actually already happened, the constitutional affront and the surreptitious economic carnage being perpetrated upon us by an utterly uncaring Tory English Nationalist government in London.

              • Carefully omitting the reality that you actually need your own stable currency first! (And can avoid joining the euro indefinitely thereafter.) This is a hoary old BBC-style straw man we don’t need right now, so why resurrect it?

                you miss my point completely

                I’m well aware that while scotland will need to commit to the euro, there exists no mechanism to force scotland to join the euro.

                since to join the euro, we would need first to launch a £scots and then be in the ERMII for 2 years before the eu would even allow us to adopt the euro.

                either way,

                the question of currency during indyref2 must be £scots

                same for which level of eu integration an indy scotland would want,

                ergo efta (sm/cu) immediately

                appealing to brexiteers?? for us to win indy…………we need to convince everyone

                as for But.that’……………, opting for efta as a policy is relegating the issue of the eu till after the election and indyref2, its nicola who is talking about joining the eu, not alex

      • thats the 4th time you’ve told me to leave this blog. are you even capable of having a rational discussion without snide remarks?

        • grizebard says:

          I didn’t say or intend that. Please stop ascribing motives to me that I don’t possess except in your imagination. You have an unfortunate tendency to personalise things when people dare to disagree with you.

          Just for the record, I was merely hoping that you yourself would eventually tire of your thoughts falling on stony ground here (and not without good reason) and find something more productive to do with your precious time, or possibly at least somewhere more receptive to your many diversions (which like the cactus bloom in summer, appear in profusion at election time and are then not seen for absolute ages therafter).

          But that’s your call, not mine.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Despite all the EU hype being generated and maintained from London, EFTA or similar would be a damned good start to a nascent Scottish Nation, it really doesn’t matter which badge you put on it, the Etonian/London set are killing UK trade on which thousands if not millions depend.

      With all due respect to @grizebard’s mischief, the disaster which has befallen the big earners of Scottish exports after Brexit there are two alternatives left, rescue by rejoining some EU order or succumb to being asset stripped by London.

      The EU may systems may not be the perfect partner, but compared to what the UK has to offer, sunny uplands and unicorns, no contest.
      Happy fish ? FFS…

  53. Dr Jim says:

    Opposition world trolling the FM like crazy with the old Tory notion of how finance actually doesn’t work “How’s it all going to be paid for” they squeal, as they gobble down the Tory propaganda of countries not having money and being forced to pay down deficits as though a country having a deficit is a criminal offence except for when the Tories do it

  54. Dr Jim says:

    I see Wingsy’s now arguing with himself and Salmond over a voting system both of them used to say had to be SNP 1&2 to win

    Disappearing and Arses come to mind

  55. Petra says:

    The BBC at it again!

    Phantom Power:- ”BBC Scotland’s unionist plant as seen on ⁦#bbcdebatenight and #bbcleadersdebate. Boris fan David just happened to make it through hundreds of applicants and be selected to ask a question twice in the space of a month?”


    Lesley Riddoch:- ”#BBCLeadersDebate Ouch. BBC presenter raises subject of Scotland’s lost oil fund with Lesley Riddoch.”

  56. Dr Jim says:

    In our all encompassing wonderful union of equal countries when there’s an election in England the British media give wall to wall coverage on all their platforms, when there’s a general election in Scotland there’s actually even less coverage given to that than a local council election in England
    I’ve seen more coverage of elections abroad in foreign countries around the world not even remotely connected with anything to do with Britain than I ever see of Scotland, when you come to think about it English folk probably recognise more American politicians than the politicians from Scotland the country they demand doesn’t leave them

    Folk should think about how equal they think we are in Scotland

    • grizebard says:

      Yes, the lacuna in the BritNat mentality; despite all the evidence to the contrary you mention, they cling to the somewhat pathetic fantasy that we really are “all pals together”, whereas their supposed “pals” don’t even register them, can’t in the least be bothered with them, and only begin to take notice when it looks like they might actually lose face because of a loss of territory, merely out of self-pride.

      This explains the unfortunate delusion of the Labourite tendency in particular that their English comrades are just waiting to get back into power so that they can, as an immediate first priority, institute this wonderful shiny new federal UK of their fond imaginings. (The few who have had any actual imaginings, that is.)

      Whereas, as we can clearly see, New Toff Labour has conversely now embarked on an outright EngNat strategy that is a pale imitation of the Tory version, and they aren’t intending to lift a finger to do anything for us, except maybe squeeze the Barnett formula a little less than the Tories, if they ever do get back into government again (which itself is doubtful anyway).

      This disconnect between what our remaining Labourites fondly imagine is the basis of the UK mutual relationship, and its entire absence of substance in reality, is revelatory of their lapdog mentality. I just can’t figure out if they are blissfully unaware of it, or if they rather shamefully and sheepishly realise it.

  57. Hamish100 says:

    So the Alba PR blog is in a bit of a guddle.

    He believes that Holyrood elections are flawed.

    “ The real flaw in the system is the lack of a second independence-supporting party with more credibility and a wider voter appeal than the Greens: a pro-indy Lib Dems to the SNP’s Labour, if you will.”
    His Lib dem credentials coming to the fore. Mind you they believe in Brexit these days which is to the detriment of Scotland. Maybe they don’t know that?

    He goes on “.,, That is to say, the SNP needs a credible coalition partner that won’t spend its time trying to undermine the SNP’s primary reason for existence (as the Lib Dems would have done had they gone into coalition with the SNP in 2007).”

    Isn’t that exactly what he and his fellow bloggers have been doing for a number of years? The hypocrisy is overwhelming.

    Then “..But the Greens are social and economic extremists quite properly regarded as a nutter fringe by most voters, and whose commitment to independence is lukewarm and largely opportunist anyway “.

    Surely he was looking in the mirror stating that? a blog that promotes labour to defeat the FM in her constituency.

    To claim that the Greens are opportunistic must mean that Alba are at the top of that tree.

    Have they no self awareness of what they do and say is noted by the rest of us?
    Do they really believe they are not the opportunists?

    I think they are now realising that a few hundred self congratulating pats on the back by bloggers doesn’t automatically translate to votes in the real world.

    SNP 1 & 2 for me.

    • Dr Jim says:

      As you are the only person who knows my true identity Hamish I’ve had a meeting with myself and having gone over the figures the Salmond Wngsy’s are blowing smoke out their own Arses in desperation, I had a good laugh with big honest John this morning about how clever and efficient they are that they didn’t even register their logos with the Electoral Commission so they cannot be displayed on the ballot papers, so the electorate can choose by logo the other parties but the Salmond Wingsy party might only have a name, now some might say that’s enough but the last time I saw that name was either on a TV channel or a cheap Hi Fi from Woolworths

      Everybody knows those were duff Hi Fi’s and Woolies has gone, oh how John and I laughed

      SNP 1& 2 to re elect me as FM

      • grizebard says:

        Both you and Janey are a real tonic, Dr.J!

      • jfngw says:

        Don’t forget, they didn’t even remember to buy their own .scot web domain. Forward planning doesn’t seem to have been much in existence.

        Are you Kendo Nagasaki? I suspect that may be too obscure for most readers (shows my age).

        • Dr Jim says:

          Bet you didn’t know there were two Kendo Nagasaki’s and nobody noticed because of the mask when the first guy got old

      • Hamish100 says:

        Ok nic ! Shh

    • grizebard says:

      The irony of all this being that the very LibDems were supposed to be the “moderating influence” in the Scottish system, but they became so dependent on “Big Daddy” Labour, or so prissily standoffish, or both, that in 2007 they refused to work with the SNP in coalition as they had previously done with Labour. Perhaps they thought that in so doing they could, in fairly short order, bring the new government down. Whereas, arguably, they brought down themselves and the ancien regime they propped-up instead.

      In the process of the intervening years, they lost whatever raison d’être they had left. The final straw for many being their blank refusal, along with all the other BritNat parties, to support a third “devo max” option being written into the Edinburgh Agreement, an option that might well have been the beginning of the UK federalism they had long espoused, and which they so readily betrayed. Now with their EU abandonment, for purely English electoral reasons, they stand for absolutely nothing, a sorry cast-off in the dustbin of Scottish history.

      We can only anticipate a complete renewal of the political spectrum in an independent Scotland, where well-grounded democratic reform will be a natural and indispensible feature.

      • Dr Jim says:

        Willie Rennie is so confident of party success that maintaining his position is a victory for Willie, the positive ambition to have no ambition is now ingrained in the Liberal Democrats in Scotland

        All four of them will rejoice at how fast the Lib Dems are progressing if they don’t disappear altogether, high apple pie in the sky hopes, just remember that little old ant

        • Alba Laddie says:

          I wish wee Willie would stop with his daily hilarious japes, including today’s one where he was frolicking outside the Lib Dum’s HQ at Haymarket; honestly, I cannae eat my tea for laughing some nights.

          He really is so wacky and edgy isn’t he?

          Said naebody. Ever.

          • grizebard says:


            True that.

            “Frolicking”? I’m finding it hard to process that thought.

    • Alex Clark says:

      That article wasn’t written by the blog owner.

  58. Grouser says:

    Lets show the BBC et all – SNP1Alba2 – and get maximum representation in Holyrood.

  59. Potter says:

    Nigel Farage has announced his is to withdraw candidates from the upcoming election to help the ALBA party. Brian Topping, ALBA party list candidate for NE ,who campaigned for Brexit, commented “magic, everyone can see the amazing benefits Brexit has brought for Scotland’s fishermen”

    • Dr Jim says:

      Brexit has saved Scottish fisherman the work of actually having to work, they can just sign on the dole and get a whole £90 a week for free now, benefits of the Union right there, bet the fishermen and their families are well luvin it

    • grizebard says:

      Yes, they seem to recognise fellow-travellers in more ways than one.

      Though that statement is well past delusional, by their actions they evidently see the way the Brexit wind is blowing, even among NE fishermen.

      Funny – not really – how that scene has dropped right off BBC screens these days, even though it is as pertinent to the election as anything possibly could be.

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Brian ‘Brexiteer’ Topping a now ex SNP councillor…..has done the SNP a favour… leaving the SNP………….

      Alba is welcome to him as with comments like “magic, everyone can see the amazing benefits Brexit has brought for Scotland’s fishermen”…..tis patently clear that his mouth obviously works faster than his brain can engage .

      WTF …..honestly what a pantomime …..

      BTW has anyone noticed the large amount of NEW and NEWLY formed parties and also the random and extreme independents who are standing in the Scottish elections …we even have Britain First ex jailbird Jayda Fransen standing in Glasgow……..I wonder what voters she will attract….as in I do not wonder at all….as I know……..even Manky Jacket is standing….anyone would think there was something IMPORTANT and DIFFERENT about some candidates motives in this particular election other than just an honest desire by all of them to serve us as MSP’s…..wink wink….mind you there are currently some conventional parties whose motives could be questionable to…..also wink wink….

      BTW Nigel Farage is at it….the ONLY party he helps out are the Tories (his real preferred party)… reason he has given for withdrawing candidates is not the true one….he does not do truth….and that’s a fact….Brexit being a good example of that…another being his endorsement of Trump….I rest my case.

  60. Ken says:

    An elected LibDem councillor. Changed to Independent to go in with the illegal unionist Alliance dominating Aberdeen City Council. Labour councillors in with the Tories.

    £200million Development. £7Million repayments for 30 years. Empty shops and offices. Horrendous Developments ruining the City centre. £30million to renovate an Art Gallery. Shut for 5 years. Waste all over the place but not supporting essential services. A total disgrace.

    £1.2Billion in debt. Refused a gift of £80Million to regenerate and pedestrianise the City. A two job Tory.
    Ripping off the public purse. £1.7Million blocking off the beach road changed a few weeks later.

    Covid spread by Tory donating premises getting illegal licences. A further month lockdown. The roads so badly shut off people do not know which way to turn. A shambles,

  61. Ken says:

    It is possible Topping will not get elected. Fisher folk and farmers are not best pleased at the Brexit betrayal. Turriff farmers were big donators to the SNP. They could support Alba in other parts.

  62. Potter says:

    More news just in from ALBA party,
    Alex Arthur MBE, ALBA health spokesman, when asked about the obesity crisis stated “ fat blobbys should exercise more so they don’t need the vaccine”
    Dr Jim Walker ALBA candidate,the right wing economist who believes the defenition of left wing is “ people who think women have a penis” when asked about working with Sturgeon replied “who that cow?”

    • Dr Jim says:

      I know I know, they just keep getting better and better at this public communications thing

    • grizebard says:

      MBE, a Brit Empire gong recipient thus, eh..? (It just keeps gettin’ weirder.)

      As for Walker, maybe somebody should quietly whisper in his ear that his new party is also home to radical lefties (though when one goes far enough round the back, one comes out on the other side, I suppose).

      All it needs is for Georgeous to join them instead of merely welcoming them. Or is that a joy to come?

  63. Capella says:

    The Courier thinks it’s all over for Salmond. Their poll shows Alba on just 3%

    • Dr Jim says:

      As much as 3%? It must be down to the Alex Arthur effect, punching above his dislike of Romanians

    • grizebard says:

      Oh, the political spectre of David Owen looms just a little closer…

    • jfngw says:

      Not going to take any seats at that level, in fact it is unlikely to damage the SNP list seats, depends on how consistent it is across the regions.

      • Capella says:

        Popped over to Scot Goes Pop to see if he has any analysis but no – he’s defending AS from an anti-Alba troll.

        So the editor of the Courier is, of course, David Clegg, ex political editor of the Record which leaked the Salmond investigation findings. So he will not be doing AS any favours.

        Even so, James Kelly really should be examining the runes and telling us what they portend.

        • jfngw says:

          He has, he says it’s a great result for Alba and keeps Salmond in contention, within his predictions (whatever that means).

          He states if they can get to 5-6% then they can take eight seats, what he doesn’t say is it is likely only four of these are from unionist parties, the other four are probably from the SNP (1) & Green’s (3).

          They need to take a much higher percentage to start making real inroads on the unionist seats, I suspect they need about 15% (they would take the SNP ones in South Scotland first). If their claim is they only want to take unionist seats then why are they standing in South Scotland were they need a massive vote (probably approaching 30%) to take any unionist seats.

        • grizebard says:

          I’m afraid he dropped significantly in my estimation when he very recently asserted “lots of people have left SNP for Alba” without any evidence whatever. It was simply a wishful assertion or he’s being “led up the garden path” by others spinning a line. So with that one telling phrase he crossed over from being a fair-minded analyst to becoming a p/r front for Alba. Big mistake, reputation taken a hit, and likely all for nothing.

  64. Alex Clark says:

  65. Alex Clark says:

    An archive link to the full article in the Courier.

  66. Craig P says:

    The only vote that matters to the Conservatives is the 2014 referendum result. To paraphrase Alan Bisset, the message they took from that is they can do whatever they want to us because we don’t care enough to stop it.

    Thanks for keeping the focus on the real enemy of Scotland, Paul.

  67. Petra says:

    It’s high time that they laid their cards on the table.

    ‘Kenny MacAskill hints suggests Alba backs EFTA over EU membership.’

    ..”MacAskill’s plan was criticised by Dr Kirsty Hughes, the founder of the Scottish Centre on European Relations, who said it would give an independent Scotland “no seat at the table”. She added: “If Alba is really taking a policy position of joining European Economic Area/EEA not EU then that is quite a distinction to SNP. EEA is not a transition to the EU, it’s an alternative – and one that would give independent Scotland no seat at the table & put up borders to both rest of UK and EU.”


    ‘Holyrood 2021: Scottish Greens reveal full list of candidates.’

    ..”MSP hopefuls for the pro-independence party are standing in 12 constituencies across Scotland and in all eight regional lists.”..

  68. Alex Clark says:

    Here are the Questions and Answers in graph form from the Courier poll summarised by Prof. Curtice.

    • Alex Clark you do know that the courier is a right wing newspaper as s DC Thomson the owner as is the editor who penned the VOW

      Do you like them now ?
      All three hated AS in 2014
      They still hate him
      They still hate Scottish independence

  69. Capella says:

    Wolfgang Schauble, former German Finance minister, said that Scotland would gain faster re-entry to the EU than any country in history.

  70. Alex Montrose says:

    3% for the Alibaba’s, James Kelly will no be best pleased, he’s now got a list of rules if you want to post on his blog,

    Rule No 1 no slagging the Alba Party.
    Rule No 2 no slagging the Alba Party.
    Rule No 3 ach you get the drift.

    • Potter says:

      True best avoided, he’s gone full ALBA , there is no Troll he’s just deleting awkward questions re the Party he supports.

      • So if you are not for us you are against us. How very fascist
        No wonder people are supporting The ALBA party.

        • grizebard says:

          I think you have your wires crossed there. It’s SGP that’s – very obviously – doing what you’re accusing Alex of.

          Oh, and “people” are not. Just more wishful thinking posited as fact, just like JK, to his shame. Once you start bending things, be it ever so little, it’s hard to straighten them out properly again.

        • Alex Clark says:

          The real problem and possibly the reason for your unhappiness and for calling people fascist is the fact that so far 97% of the Scottish population are not supporting the Alba party.

    • 3% is pretty good for a party that has been on the go such a short time
      It was founder by Laurie Flynn on 8/2/2021

      Alex Salmond joined the ALBA party 26/3/2021 which will have been the date when people were attracted to it
      So ALBA with AS on the go six days and already has 3% of the vote

      Pretty good and i think it will increase each week

    • Scotgoespop is a fab website Mr Kelly is very reliable in providing information about Scottish politics he is a real asset to Scottish independence people.

      • grizebard says:

        No longer, I’m afraid. Now looking at instead.

      • When a stalwart of the independence movement starts getting vilified you know there is something serious wrong with Nicola’s darling little angels and their party in heaven.

        • weegingerdug says:

          I’ve been getting vilified too you know – one Alba party supporter tried to leave a message on this blog saying “I wish it was you who had died instead of the dog.” Are you going to make wild generalisations based on that too?

        • grizebard says:

          When anyone we like strays from “the straight and narrow”, we should just stay schtum, then? Quite something coming from you.

        • Alec Lomax says:

          How’s the weather in Bath, old bean ?

        • Alex Clark says:

          You’re talking about the VAST majority of Independence supporters who will vote for Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP in this election, I’m sure she sees every one of us that will vote SNP as “her darling little angels”.

  71. Hamish100 says:

    Ken, they could support anybody. I think Alba is struggling one week in.

  72. Petra says:

    By gum, they’ll no be popular 😀.

    ‘Scotland’s economy can thrive after independence, Downing Street adviser admits.’

    ..”Chapman’s article, published this week on the London School of Economics (LSE) British Politics and Policy blog, notes that if Westminster’s consent is not forthcoming, Scotland could “attempt unilateral secession from the UK, which would arguably flout constitutional law and make the applicable international law more relevant”.”..


    We’ve got jailbird standing for election now 🙄 .

    ‘Holyrood: Former deputy Britain First leader Jayda Fransen to run against FM.

    ..”She was sentenced to 36 weeks in prison in 2018 after being found guilty of three counts of religiously aggravated harassment.”..

    ..”In a request for funding during the video, Dowson described himself, Fransen and Joe Finnie – described as the organiser of the British Freedom Party – as “machine guns” and donations as “bullets”.”..

    • grizebard says:

      “arguably flout constitutional law” – or possibly put that miserable apology of a thing – this superb {ahem} ultra-flexible conceit that’s suddenly succumbed to terminal sclerosis – under proper politico-legal challenge for the first time in its vile existence, embarrass the UK in the eyes of the entire democratic world, and likely win the case as well, both legally and politically.

      If we negotiate the hurdle of the coming election successfully, there’s a referendum coming, folks, and UKGov knows it well. And at the bitter end of a trail of lies, false assurances and empty broken promises, it is greatly afeared of our judgement on it.

  73. JoMax says:

    Can someone please explain how a Party which, to all intents and purposes, became known to the public only a few days ago, can, in a flash, produce candidates for an election to be held in a mere few weeks. Apart from the ones who are being highlighted here who have some sort of reputation already, who are the rest? I see names, for example, in the Highlands. Who are they? What experience do they have? What are their credentials? What are their motives? Surely these are questions an established political party would be asking potential candidates at local/branch level, and yet there aren’t even ‘branches’ established as far as I know. It seems to me there’s been a great degree of manoeuvering and plotting going on for a lot longer than we realise.

    • You are sounding like the way people on WOS went about NS
      I bet you cant name all the SNP candidates , or what experience they have or what their credentials are or what their motives are

      Get a grip
      Its another Scottish independence political party
      They are not the enemy unless you are a unionist in which case they are

      • JoMax says:

        I asked a simple question and do not expect to be told to get a grip.

        Of course I don’t know who every SNP candidate is, but they will all have been vetted in plenty of time by their local branches.

        • So you dont know who every SNP candidate is but you expect the members of the ALBA party to know who all their candidates are and what the candidates experience , credentials and motives are ?

          • James Mills says:

            Well . I have heard :
            one hates Romanians/gypsies ,
            one voted for Brexit and thinks he did Scottish Fishermen a great service
            and one is flying in all the way from the Far East , called the FM ”a cow” , but that was alright said Alex Salmond on radio , because that was BEFORE he was a candidate . Was that the reason he was chosen as a candidate ?

    • grizebard says:

      The answer is, they’re Winging it. An enforced late change in tack by Iago whose original strategy was lots of insidious whispering behind the Arras (that’s the only organised part of it) then return in triumph as leader of the SNP. Instead he had to get an off-the-peg replacement thanks to a generous passing Marxist.

      The real question that as yet remains unanswered: who’s bankrolling it?

      • The real question is how many people will vote for ALBA
        Many more than people here are expecting i think
        People are not daft
        They wasted a million LIST votes on SNP last time
        They wont do that this time
        Last time there was great debate about whether it was best to give the LIST vote
        to SNP or the greens most chose to give it to SNP – a million
        I cant see a million people doing that again and i cant see them all switching to the greens
        I think ALBA SNP and the greens will get a share
        Half will stick with SNP but the other half will go two to one ALBA greens

        • grizebard says:

          “Many more than people here are expecting i think” – you may think that, but the only hint we have so far contradicts you. And there are sound reasons – a total lack of adequate preparation for one – that tend to support our POV on this rather than yours.

          “People are not daft” – Thankfully, is all I say.

        • “The real question is how many people will vote for ALBA
          Many more than people here are expecting…”

          Well we’ve got an actual poll to digest and 3%, of the people asked who intend to vote, plan to completely waste their list vote on Alba as things stand. Some of those will see that figure and reconsider, no doubt about that.

          After all the hype and hoopla over the launch, with wall to wall press coverage last Friday and over the weekend, it ain’t exactly overwhelming is it?

          Not enough for seats, except maybe for Ecky-the-Ego if he’s got any personal vote left in the NE, but potentially doing enough to harm to cost seats for other indy parties.

          Where’s the 8, 12 or 20 seats going to come from now?

        • James Mills says:

          Enough with this ”wasted million List votes ” ! These are insurance against the vagaries of the FPTP constituency vote .

          They will be WASTED if given to a johnny-come-lately Party that SAYS it supports the SNP yet is standing candidates in areas where the List is the likely source of SNP seats which WILL split the independence vote .

  74. Petra says:

    ”It seems to me there’s been a great degree of manoeuvering and plotting going on for a lot longer than we realise.”

    No doubt about that JoMax, but it seems to be backfiring on them.


    ‘Alex Salmond’s Alba will not return any MSPs to Holyrood, says Survation poll.’

    ”The first Holyrood election poll to include Alex Salmond’s Alba party is bad news for both the former First Minister and the Union, according to leading polling expert Sir John Curtice.”..

    ..”Curtice said the poll results suggest “it’s all over for Salmond”, but added that he “might just get a seat in the north-east himself”.”

  75. JMD says:

    But if they’d been manoeuvering and plotting for a while wouldn’t they have dealt with all that stuff about candidates etc already?

    SNP 1 & 2.

  76. Capella says:

    James Kelly has an article up now on the opinion poll. Putting a positive spin on it, of course.

    • grizebard says:

      Oh, he’s “whistling Dixie” all right. Rationalises 3% into 5% “somewhere” to get a win. A win. Wow. Big deal. Then has the nerve to say, since there is a danger in falling into the water by straddling two boats as they drift apart, everyone should just hop over onto the littlest one to help it out. That’s hardly convincing, but seems par for the course for Alba proponents. We have to give them what they demand. Just, well, because.

      Whereas the more sensible approach, when it looks like the wee boat might go under anyway, is obvious: stay on board the big one that’s actually going purposefully somewhere.

      • Capella says:

        Good idea 🙂

      • grizebard you said

        “ seems par for the course for Alba proponents. We have to give them what they demand. Just, well, because.”

        That is so silly
        Especially when your position is to ask a million people to give their vote to SNP for zero seats

        • grizebard says:

          Where does all that negativity come from? If the SNP achieved as good a showing in the list as in the constituencies, they would gain even more seats. Duh. This whole fable about “lost votes” is fundamentally self-defeating. The cringe manifest.

          Besides, your breathless assumption that Alba will achieve anything is entirely unproven. It could instead lose a majority for indy that’s otherwise there for the taking.

  77. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    BTW the race report that was published yesterday…you know the one that stated there is NO institutionalised racism in the UKnotOK……..think it was produced and written from a parallel universe…..where reality and truth have no place……obvs.

    Well TWO of the people who were noted on the report as being on the list of academics and consultants who were contacted and who consulted on the report…..have both come out and said THEY WERE NOT INVOLVED …..OR EVEN CONSULTED by The Commission on Race & Ethnics disparity……whose Commissioners BTW are appointed by the Prime Minister…….

    1. S I Martin an author and Curator who said “They never contacted me or consulted me. And if they knew anything about me, they know I would not have had anything to do with any of the current shenanigans at Number 10”.

    2. Stephen Bourne a Historian who said “To my horror I named as one of the ‘academics & individuals’ who was consulted by the Commission on Race & Ethnic Disparities. I wonder how many others were consulted without their knowledge”….

    Get DRoss and the Baroness onto it….as this is another job for the two self appointed moral crusaders…….who seek out corruption (and use it ) and seek to uphold morals and standards in public life ( as currently they are bereft of both and need to know what they are).

    About time Boris was dragged in for questioning….for 8 hours plus…….

    • How’s this for a piece of gaslighting:

      “…There is a new story about the Caribbean experience which speaks to the slave period not only being about profit and suffering but how culturally African people transformed themselves into a re-modelled African/Britain…”

      Are they seriously suggesting slavery wasn’t all bad because some of us enjoy some, or all of, blues; jazz; reggae or steel bands?

      An estimated 12½ million people stolen from their homelands, packed like sardines on slave ships to the Americas and often worked to death, if they survived the crossing, but look: soul food; Brazilian fitba’…

      Any regime that expects us to swallow that shite needs to be departed from, at pace and soon.

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Drew…also let us not forget the huge and tragic scandal of Windrush…..people’s lives devastated….there was a time when such scandals would have brought down a government….however with the recent race report stating there is NO institutionalised racism in the UKnotOK , as in nothing to see here ….again, it beggars belief that if that truly were the case….. then if true why , as a population , did everyone within this so called non racist UKnotOK not unite and demand that the Tories should GTF………yes indeed the Race report was a WHITEWASH…….

  78. Alex Clark says:

    I think we can more than likely rule out a supermajority now and will have to settle for a simple majority and hopefully, that will be an SNP one.

    • Alex Clark

      You do realise that Labour Tory Lib Dem will be busy organising their tactical voting dont you
      It will be easier for them this time because theyve done it before

      If Scottish independence supporters all vote SNP 1&2 there is a great risk that SNP will not get a majority
      We are then reliant on the greens supporting SNP

      Scottish independence is not top priority for the greens there is always the possibility that they do not support SNP what then

      • jfngw says:

        If we don’t vote SNP 1 & 2 then there is even less prospect of a the SNP getting a majority. That’s an novel idea though, you can gain more seats by voting for someone else.

      • grizebard says:

        The Unionists mainly do their tactical voting in the constituencies, which is where it has (for them) the most impact. So any supposed indy-supporter who says “don’t vote SNP” for their local MSP is either terminally stupid or a fake. That’s happening, and we know fine from whom.

      • “You do realise that Labour Tory Lib Dem will be busy organising their tactical voting dont you…”

        Yes Terence, Alex absolutely does understand this, as do many others that have been trying to hammer this into your skull since Friday. It is precisely because of this that we are not relying on a repeat of the constituency outcome from 2016.

        If the Unionists do get organised and do turn over constituencies and make gains against the SNP, it’s vital that the list votes are there to compensate for such an outcome.

        How you can post what I quoted and still bang on about list votes being wasted beggars belief.

    • jfngw says:

      There was never any likelihood of a supermajority, Salmond is just playing those that believe it. They would need take about 25% of the vote to even stand a chance, that’s from the Green’s/SNP (about 50% of their votes), unless they believe they are going to take swathes of unionist votes.

      With many of their supporters recommending spoiling the constituency ballot paper (one which is now being prominently retweeted by James Kelly) then it is even less likely it could be achieved.

      • Alex Clark says:

        There are those that will try and tell you different despite any evidence to the contrary.

  79. ALBA have a video on facebook about voting SNP and ALBA
    Its good

    I recognise many of the candidates chosen by ALBA through their involvement with SNP

    • Hamish100 says:

      Aye we tried the same game in our hoose.
      Whose that ? Is that no a cooncillor that fell oot way wi what’s their name? Werr they no a MSP that ended up in Russia wi luv? Is he no a dairy fermer ? Naw he dismal like coo’s , I like rabbits, shut up weer talking politics!
      Nope don’t know him, nor her, nor him.when did they get selected and anointed?
      Who organised that?

      I think we should see all their emails when this first started? 2020? Get the dooor! There’s a guy selling baths.

  80. Dr Jim says:

    Spercalifragilisticexpealidocious dum diddle iddle diddle um diddle aye right,,,, Salmond’s here tae help, watch my eyes roll

  81. Golfnut says:

    Apparentky, at least according to the National, Salmond is asking Nicola to work with ‘ him ‘, the sheer brass neck of him, not to mention the arrogant assumption of superiority. After 2 yrs briefing against the FM and blatantly trying to undermine her, he wants her to work with him.

  82. Dr Jim says:

    I’ve just spent the last 15 minutes or so tracking down members of the Salmond party who are trolling the FM with bile and abuse and there’s no one on any of these accounts having conversations about Independence, it appears their sole and only aim is the destruction of Nicola Sturgeon, pretty much just carbon copies of Wings hatred

  83. Petra says:

    Has anyone come across Alex Salmond running up and down stairs delivering leaflets?

    ‘Scottish election: Sturgeon rules out working with Salmond and commits to Covid inquiry.’ Video.


    ‘Kantar poll puts SNP on 7 per cent of UK vote going into Holyrood election.’

    ”The SNP could be on for a historic win in next month’s Holyrood elections, a UK-wide poll has suggested.”..

    • Statgeek says:

      For a start, it would be 7% of the GB vote, as most polls don’t include Northern Ireland. Scotland tends to be approximately 8.5% of GB, so 7% would equate to 80% or so of Scots, short of the 7% coming from parts of GB out-with Scotland.

      We’re probably seeing extremes of MoE, and rounding. 5% + 1.5% MoE = 6.5%, which gets rounded in polls (I wish they would give an extra decimal) to 7%.

      Much as I’d love to see it, I’d file that under wait and see, in the ‘does Santa really exist’ file. And of course, the date is a bit of a hint. 🙂

  84. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    On a lighter note…..

    Unknown source “A linguistics professor at Glasgow university tells the class, “There isn’t a single language, not one, in which a double positive can express a negative.” A voice comes from the back, “Aye, right.”

    Also here’s one from comedian George Carlin ” Have you ever noticed anyone driving slower than you is an idiot and anyone going faster than you is a maniac” ?

    Groucho Marx ” politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it elsewhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies”.

    Unknown source but good ” seeing how some people wear their face masks I now understand how contraceptives fail”.

    Unknown source ” I get ignored so much that my nickname should be Terms and Conditions”…..

    Not-My-Real-Name aka Terms & Conditions…..Lol


    • Macart says:

      Epic! On all counts. 😀

    • Golfnut says:


      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Glad you both enjoyed a wee bit respite late at night…

        So before I go beddy byes…here’s another one but tis true….well lion bit is t’other bit I made up………but tis also true…….CNN bit is a humdinger from what must have been a report from a Churnalist as opposed to a Journalist ….

        Remember when CNN reported that “Cecil the lion’s brother Jericho, who is ALSO a LION, was killed on Saturday”…..

        Can imagine Reporting Scotland possibly reporting similar ….as in highlighting that which is already bleedin obvious as in reporting “Douglas Ross fanboy George Galloway, who is ALSO a TORY, was out canvassing for the Tories on Saturday”…..same but not the same…..but kinda the same…as in both Cecil and Jericho WERE both lions and Jericho got killed on a Saturday……. but also Douglas and George ARE both Tories and I’m sure George would canvass for Douglas on a Saturday…….

        • James Mills says:

          I hope they both get eaten by a lion , Cecil or Jericho , but the poor lions will end up with stomach ache -these guys are indigestible ( while Galloway is also ”Indefatigable ”!)

          • Not-My-Real-Name says:

            James have the two lions not suffered enough…as in both are dead…now you want their ghosts to come back and eat rubbish…..shame on you James.

    • Tatu3 says:


  85. Petra says:

    Video:- Nicola Sturgeon on the ball as usual. A proverbial workhouse. Goodness know how she does it. And can’t rule out working for Alba? But she does.

    Peter A Smith:- ”Interview with Nicola Sturgeon leader of the SNP. She talks policy, preventing a ‘lost generation,’ and drug deaths. Also says SNP don’t need a single-party majority for a mandate on indyref2 – and she can’t rule out working with Alba to deliver that.”


    ”20 shellfish firms plan to SUE the UK govt for making false & negligent claims about Brexit. If Ministers don’t sort out shellfish market access with the EU by Sept, they will claim ‘substantial damages’. Yes! Let the avalanche commence!”

    • Glad to hear that they wont rule out working with ALBA to have indyref2
      Thats all it takes
      Togetherness on the voting paper and we have it
      Then vote for it in parliament

    • Petra says:

      Hahaha. Should say ”workhorse” or even ”powerhouse”, however I’m sure that you get what I mean 😎.

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Petra You must have been thinking of Jacob Rees Mogg’s vision of Bwitain in the future…as “Workhouses” are, I am sure, something that figure largely in his vision…..though he may call them “powerhouses”… in he and the other Tories have all of the “power” in the work “houses”.

        Night Night…..

        • Petra says:

          Aye workhorse, workhoose, powerhouse, powerless and so it goes on. You can see that my heid’s wasted with it all NMRN 😀.

  86. Petra says:

    A fifth of the world’s penicillin is made in North Ayrshire? That a new one on me. Well done Scotland …. once AGAIN 😀.

    ‘Associate Feature: A healthier, wealthier Scotland.’

    ..“About a fifth of the world’s penicillin is made in North Ayrshire, for example, that’s a huge amount. For one in five people taking a penicillin tablet today, it will have started its life in Irvine. You’ve got huge amounts of respiratory medicine made in Montrose. We’re going to have the Valneva factory churning out lots of COVID vaccines in the future, if approved. We’re very lucky. For such a small country, we’re already punching more than our weight. I just think we cannot rest on our laurels, and the next Scottish Government needs to deliver joined up data in order to attract further investment.”..

    ..”Alison Culpan (director of ABPI Scotland0 adds: “We’ve never seen Scotland working so well together. I feel there’s a sense of urgency and that we’re on the crest of a wave where people have now seen the importance of our industry and they realise its success is vital to our health and wealth.”,associate-feature-a-healthier-wealthier-scotland


    Video:- Sneaky wee Gove.

    ”The UK Government appear to have been flouting the Advertising Standards Authority code over their adverts highlighting the supposed positive impacts of Brexit.”

  87. Petra says:

    Alex used to say vote SNPx2. I wonder why he’s changed his tune now 😀?

    ”Nicola Sturgeon is subjected to a smear & muckraking interview by a BBC Scotland presenter.”


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

    • Ken says:

      There were no alternative credible Indy parties. Now there is. Get the band back together.

      Nicola and Alex the best leaders Scotland have ever had. Both are innocent.

      Leaders come leaders go. Independence is important. The most Important thing for Scotland.

      A unionist M15 plot. Get rid of unionists. To make Scotland the world a better place.

      • Dr Jim says:

        But Ken Alex Salmond used to insist both votes SNP was the only way to get Independence, now he says the opposite, so was he lying then or is he lying now

        • Ken says:

          He is not lying. He is telling the truth. Other people lie. That is a fact. There were no credible other Indy Parties. Now there is. Sound advice to break D’Hond’t. What has always been needed to hoover up the (wasted) Indy votes. A no brainier.

          • Dr Jim says:

            The Green party is a credible Independence party and everybody knows what their policies are, so far all we know about the Salmond party is that they are standing candidates who are against Romanians, Gay marriage and can’t seem to keep themselves out of the newspapers using abusive names about Nicola Sturgeon, trolling the Internet abusing anyone who does not support them, one of them has even done jail time for fraud

            That doesn’t sound much like a credible party to me, would you accept a Unionist party with the same credentials?

            Wheesht for Salmond Ken?

  88. In the past few days I have been dipping in and out of Alistair Cooke’s Letter From America 1946 -2004.

    I may not agree with his politics, or his inherent English Imperialism, and he doesn’t half name drop at every chance he gets, nNevertheless it is a fascinating diary of events on the other side of the Pond over 38 remarkable years.

    His range of topics is massive, covering the assassinations, 9/11, Viet Nam, Joe Louis, and holidays, like The Fourth of July.

    His piece on Independence Day, and the roots of the yearly celebrations broadcast 2/7/1982, describing New Yorkers sending their kids of to Summer Camp, traces the origins of this very American holiday.

    Fireworks, Cooke reveals, are illegal in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and many other states.
    However like Prohibition Law, Americans consider this ban ‘more of nuisance than a prohibition’.
    The US Federal Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a statement around about The Fourth, warning that ‘fireworks sometimes do things that they are not supposed to do. People should be extremely careful’.

    In the fanfare of Salmond’s Leap back into politics, where sparks flew and there were fireworks, by the Chief, I had just read this essay, and the caution that ‘fireworks sometimes do things that they are not supposed to do’ sprung immediately to mind.

    The Alba launch indeed has been described as ‘a damp squib’.

    There was no fanfare, no marching band, no Second Coming up the Mound, the Leader astride an ass with his disciples laying palms fronds in his path..

    Even the IT on his Q&A Launch spluttered and faltered.

    Two empty tins and a taut length of butcher’s string would have been more effective means of communication.

    ‘Fireworks sometimes do things that they’re not supposed to do’.

    On here we have been all round the houses on Alba, Salmond, and rigging the second vote.

    I’ve just scrolled down today’s debate.

    It is done to death.

    Can we now turn our guns on Sarwar, Dross, and Rennie?

    Convince readers to this site that Self Determination is the only way forward..

    If I see Alba or Salmond posts from now on in, I shall scroll past the offering.

    Death, I am sick fed up to, hearing about, Ally’s Tarnished Army.
    I will vote SNP 1 & 2, as will my family.

    My thoughts are with Christian Duggers on this solemn and holiest of days, Good Friday.
    Peace to all on here.

    • P Harvey says:

      Morning Jack
      I’m with you on this
      We need to “ keep the heid” as my granny used to say!
      They will try all the dirty tactics possible and we have past experience of this
      It’s expected and we should just ignore it and sail on to Independence!🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

  89. Capella says:

    Happy Good Friday to you too Jack, and all the duggers. A cloudy start here but promising to be another lovely sunny day. I am feeling more optimistic about this coming election now that the trials of Nicola Sturgeon are in the past. Heard that she saw off a multitude of unionist attacks in some TV debate last night. The polls are looking good.

    Keep calm and carry on 🙂

  90. Clydebuilt says:

    Channel 4 Ciaran Jenkins interviewing Nicola Sturgeon . . . .

    NS ” I don’t believe (or Was it I’m nor convinced that) ALBA are interested in independence ”

    Editor of Daily Mail New poll out this morning with ALBA on 3%

    At that level of support they won’t get any MSP’s. . . . Votes would be wasted

  91. Capella says:

    A good analysis of the effects of voting for smaller list parties using the 2016 results as a base. Short answer – don’t do it. Worth a read though to understand why.

    • ALASTAIR says:

      Also JK over at SCOTgoesPop has very clearly and repeatedly stated that voting for a fringe party with less than 5% on the list will not get you the MSP you voted for and likely give it to a unionist.

    • Capella, Harvey,
      We fight them on the issues that affects us Scots every day of our lives.
      The ‘big things’, like Health Privatisation, Europe, Trident, Red Blue and Yellow Better Together defence of a corrupt and dead Union, and so on.
      I’ve resisted using AL(llyba)BA and his forty thieves until now.
      The sheer arrogance of the man who argues that he can step in at the 11th Hour, demand this and that, steal the credit for 7 years of hard and committed graft by the SNP and Greens, and we’ll all ‘bow before him’, to quote Rickshaw Man, beggars belief.
      Sarwar is in the Blahs today ‘vowing’ to ‘drain the swamp’ at Holyrood.
      Perhaps he should start with Monica Lennon and Kezia Dugdale, who perhaps can go public in identifying the Red Tory Sex Pest pond Life?
      Grikked Haggis this morning.
      Later, Duggers.

  92. Ken says:

    Nicola did not say she would not work with Alba. She said that she was concentrating on an SNP victory. (First). She is SNP leader. Before considering the outcome? Wait and see.

  93. Ken says:

    It is 2021. Not 2016. No point in always quoting it. Changed circumstances and reportedly higher support, overall.

  94. Capella says:

    Scottish front pages. Not good news for Alex Salmond. But hilarious front page from the Star (not really a newspaper). We’ve been showing our age using emojis like 😂 💙 👍

  95. Ken says:

    Support Independence.

    That is all that matters.

    SNP/ALBA. Vote for Independence.

    Be smart, Do not be fooled. Unite for Independence.

    Do not believe the lies. The unionist lies.

    Go for it. Secret ballot

  96. jfngw says:

    Tory leaflet arrived today, strangely it has a picture of someone not standing for election on the front, might as well as been the Queen as a Baroness. The ‘I’m too scared to stand in a constituency seat’ leader has been relegated to inside, must be that linesman thing again. I have now dealt with this matter by giving it pride of place in a suitable receptacle.

    • jfngw says:

      Too many as’s, one of these days I’m going to post something without a mistake in it, I expect a praze when I do.

  97. Ken says:

    Liver deaths. MUP not worked through yet. To the figures,

    £250Million to be spent. It should be on ‘total abstinence’ one chance proper counselling rehab facilities. Not methadone. Worse than heroin. People get methadone and take other substances. It leads to increased deaths,

    Drug/alcohol rehab finances should be kept under SNHS guidance. Drs can refer people to proper rehab facilities. It is more cost affective. It pays for itself.

    Councils under social care, keep people on methadone for years. It kills people. They do not fund proper rehab facilities. So people can get well and healthy.

    Local authorities calculate 1 in ten get well (dubious figures overall) it is still more cost affective. 10% less costs for the NHS, Police, fire, crime, social care and welfare. It is totally cost affective. It pays for itself.

    Spend £Millions to save £Billions. For a few £thousand people can get healthier and wealthier. Lead a better, happier life.

    It affects the whole society. Proper rehab facilities not methadone prescription killing and impoverished people. Destroying families and early death.

    It has to be paid privately or from insurance. There are no proper facilities for people with addiction problems. Spend the funding wisely. Not on methadone prescriptions. A total waste of monies, overall.

  98. Alec Lomax says:

    I notice that there’s a report in the Herald this morning about the Abolish Scottish Parliament Party. A threat to the Tory vote? Or just a Scottish name for Reclaim aka the Unofficial Monster Raving Loony Party ?

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