Once in a generation: The electorate can’t be bound by a politician’s rhetoric

This is the second in a series of articles looking at the topics which will dominate the coming independence referendum campaign. These pieces are aimed at undecided voters and soft no voters. In this piece I look at the claim that the first referendum was promised to be a “once in a generation vote.”

For the past year or more, Boris Johnson has been fnaugh fnaughing his way through Prime Minister’s Questions whenever the topic of another independence referendum is raised, refusing to acknowledge that the SNP and the Scottish Greens have been given a mandate by the Scottish electorate for another independence referendum.

Johnson has conceded that it’s up to the people of Scotland to decide whether they wish to remain a part of the UK, but insists that the right was exercised in 2014 and that it was a “once in a generation” vote. We’re going to hear this excuse a lot, especially now that the Scottish elections have given a victory to pro-independence parties and a large majority to parties asking for a mandate for another referendum within the five year term of this Holyrood Parliament. Together with deflections about the need to focus on recovery from the pandemic, it’s the only excuse the British government has got left.

Boris Johnson can’t plausibly argue that the SNP has no mandate from the Scottish electorate when that party won a larger vote share and a larger share of seats than his Conservative party did in the UK as a whole. He can’t plausibly maintain that there’s no mandate for another referendum when his own branch office in Scotland stood on the single platform of opposing another referendum and got its collective arse handed to it on a plate glazed with Stephen Kerr’s tears. He cannot maintain that there is no mandate when the people of Scotland elected a large majority of MSPs to Holyrood in the full knowledge that they are committed to delivering another referendum. If Boris Johnson maintains that he got a mandate from the UK electorate to deliver Brexit, the SNP has an even stronger and more convincing mandate from the Scottish electorate to deliver an independence referendum. If democracy in the UK is to mean anything at all, the choices of the people of Scotland as expressed through the ballot box must be respected.

This was a parliamentary election, not a referendum. The percentage of people voting for ostensibly anti-independence parties is irrelevant. A mandate is established when a party or parties win sufficient seats to form a majority in parliament. The SNP and the Scottish Greens stood on a platform of support for another independence referendum. They won. The Conservatives, Labour and the Lib Dems stood on a platform of opposition to another referendum. They lost.

The point about a mandate is unarguable, except that is if you’re one of those people who deny the existence of Scotland as a political and national entity and claim that the SNP won merely a “subset” of UK seats in a UK election. Describing the nation of Scotland, a constituent nation of the UK as a subset of Westminster seats on a par with an English city, region or county is quite possibly the cringiest description of Scotland ever, more cringey than North Britain. Even more cringey than “up there”. Scotland isn’t just any random selection of Westminster seats, it’s an ancient nation which was one of the founding kingdoms of the United Kingdom. The Treaty of Union which founded the unitary state known as the United Kingdom guaranteed the continuing existence of Scottish national institutions, and the Scottish nation itself. The very foundation of the UK itself recognises that Scotland is a distinct polity within the UK, a polity with its own distinctive political character.

Last year at PMQs, Boris Johnson was forced to concede, amidst the usual disrespectful barracking from Tory backbenchers whenever an SNP MP rises to speak, that it is indeed up to the people of Scotland to decide whether their future is as a part of the UK. He could hardly say anything else. However his admission has an important implication.

If it is up to the people of Scotland to decide whether they wish to remain a part of the UK, that right to self-determination is either conditional or it’s absolute. Boris Johnson appears to believe that Scotland’s sovereign right to self-determination as a nation within the UK to decide its own future is conditional upon a timing that he’ll decide. So it’s not really a sovereign right to self-determination at all. If it’s up to political forces outwith Scotland to decide when Scotland can exercise its right to self-determination, then it’s not a right to self-determination. It becomes a question of Westminster’s convenience and permission. A right to self-determination which is conditional upon the convenience and permission of Westminster is no right to self-determination at all. It’s simply another way of stating that Scotland doesn’t have the right to determine its own future, a Conservative PM does. And if that is indeed the case, then this is not the Union that the Conservatives and the Labour party have always told us it was.

There was absolutely nothing in the Edinburgh Agreement between the Scottish and British governments setting the terms for the 2014 referendum which stipulated that an independence referendum could only be held once in a generation. The rider that the referendum was a one in a generation affair did not appear on the ballot paper. It was not a part of the question that was put to the people of Scotland and which they voted on.

Alex Salmond described the referendum as a once in a generation opportunity, and was careful to add the rider that this was his personal opinion. Yet it appears that Scotland is to be held hostage to the opinion of a former First Minister, an opinion which has no force in law. The personal opinion of Alex Salmond is only being elevated to the lofty position of holy writ for the simple reason that Boris Johnson requires an excuse to prevent another independence referendum because he’s afraid he’s going to lose it.

The phrase once in a generation opportunity also appears three times in the White Paper on Independence published by the Scottish Government prior to the referendum. On page 3, the referendum is described as a “once in a generation opportunity to follow a different path”. On page 10 it is described as a “once in a generation opportunity to chart a better way.” On page 576 there is the statement, “It is the view of the current Scottish Government that a referendum is a once-in-a-generation opportunity.”

There are twos reasons why Alex Salmond’s administration took the view that the referendum of 2014 was a once in a generation opportunity. Neither of them are binding, and neither of them apply today. The first reason is that the referendum of 2014 only took place because the SNP broke the Holyrood electoral system and won the 2011 election with an absolute majority in Holyrood. Prior to this election it was not thought possible for a party to do this, and the SNP’s victory came as a surprise to everyone, not least the SNP. However the referendum campaign radically changed the Scottish political landscape in ways that were unforeseen. It is now perfectly plausible for pro-independence parties to win a majority of seats in Holyrood just as they did in May of this year.

The second reason is more important. Alex Salmond’s government took the view that they did because they had just negotiated the Edinburgh Agreement with Westminster, as a result of which both parties agreed to respect the outcome of the referendum. It was implicit in that understanding that both parties would respect the promises and commitments that they made to the people of Scotland during the referendum campaign. What is happening now is that Westminster is demanding that the current Scottish Government upholds everything that it stated during the referendum campaign, but it itself is not bound by its own promises and commitments.

Promises and commitments like telling Scotland that the only way it could remain a part of the EU was by voting no. Promises and commitments like promising that the powers of Holyrood would be enshrined in law and put beyond the ability of any Westminster government to alter without the express consent of the Scottish Parliament. Promises and commitments likes telling Scotland it was a much loved and equal partner in a family of nations, that it should lead within the UK instead of leaving it.

Indeed, it is all the more important for Westminster to uphold its promises and commitments to Scotland because it was the proposition of the No campaign which won the referendum. Yet now the SNP and Scotland are being held to ransom by a Westminster which hasn’t fulfilled its end of the bargain. If Westminster had respected all the promises that it made to Scotland in 2014, then the referendum would indeed have been a once in a generation opportunity. But they didn’t, did they. Westminster cannot insist that the SNP abide by statements that it made during the referendum campaign without itself abiding by the statements that Better Together made.

It’s Westminster’s failure to uphold its end of the bargain that has created the renewed demand and the justification for another referendum. Boris Johnson’s hypocrisy in claiming it was “once in a generation” merely highlights his own party’s failure to respect the promises and commitments that it made to the people of Scotland. When he tells us that the referendum was “once in a generation”, he’s telling the people of Scotland that we are suckers for ever believing that Westminster would keep its promises.

Yet even if there was a solemn commitment made by both sides in 2014 that the referendum was a once in a generation affair, so what? The people of Scotland have a sovereign right to decide for themselves which path Scotland will take – even Boris Johnson admits that much. That right cannot be bargained away, signed away, time-limited, or given up by any political party because it is a right that rests with the people of Scotland, not with the Conservatives, not with the SNP, not with any other party. It follows then that it’s up to the people of Scotland and no one else to decide whether or when we demand another independence referendum. In the recent Scottish elections the people of Scotland did decide to demand another referendum.

The UK that Scotland was told it could be a part of in 2014 doesn’t exist. Scotland has an absolute right to revisit the question of independence. Scotland’s right to self-determination is inalienable.


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129 comments on “Once in a generation: The electorate can’t be bound by a politician’s rhetoric

  1. wm says:

    Your last two posts are spot on Paul, regarding “once in a generation” I and everybody else that plays the lottery have a “once in a generation/lifetime” chance of winning EVERY week. Take care of yourself Paul.

  2. jfngw says:

    Will we need another referendum now another Labour proposal is hatching, ‘independence in the UK’. This looks pretty much like the status quo but with Barnet removed and them telling us ‘of course you are independent, now do as your told’. A plan for the absolute gullible, I’m pretty sure the corpse from Dunfermline will be onto this one soon.

  3. Joyce says:

    The biggest worry for me is that WM will dissolve Scottish Parliament, and therefore its government, to avoid any such referendum and so the break-up of the UK. There is, after all, not really a history of being trustworthy.

    And Paul, it’s joy to read your blogs again!

    • grizebard says:

      They can’t dissolve it, not without a referendum. Which would become an indy referendum, in effect! Oops!

      • marconatrix says:

        How do you work that out Grizebard? Why couldn’t they just suspend/abolish Holyrood as they did Stormont back in the day? It’s not as if WM and HR are joint equal parliaments within a twin state UK, since WM retains its powers over many things within Scotland and there is no English devolved parliament equivalent to Holyrood.

        • Alex Clark says:

          Scotland Act 2016: Commentary on provisions of Act

          Section 1: The Scottish Parliament and the Scottish Government

          Section 1 interests a new Part, Part 2A, with new section 63A into the Scotland Act 1998 after Part 2 (the Scottish Administration).

          Section 63A provides that the Scottish Parliament and Government are permanent parts of the United Kingdom’s constitutional arrangements, and that those institutions cannot be abolished except on the basis of a decision of the people of Scotland in a referendum.


          • marconatrix says:

            Fine, but as I understand it, WM can amend or abolish any existing Act, there being no higher authority. So what’s to stop it removing the Sec. 63A provision you quote should it become politically expedient so to do?

            • Alex Clark says:

              An outraged Scottish public?

            • grizebard says:

              I think what you are spectacularly missing is that even if you technically could, pulling a stunt like that is the apotheosis of being politically inexpedient.

              By way of quasi-historical example, you can easily order a troop of dragoons to mow down a group of protesters, but the consequence is that you lose all tacit acceptance of your authority by everyone, and the only way then is down. The mistake that England in recent-ish history made with Ireland being an actual case in point.

              • marconatrix says:

                You may well be right, but then where lies this much vaunted ‘Sovereignty’ that Brexit was supposed to be all about?
                Moreover, the present Tory government are hardly known for their expediency …

                • grizebard says:

                  Ah, the old saying, “whom the gods wish to destroy…”

                  I think it’s high time we stopped cringing about the “mighty powers” of The English Empire, stop emulating the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion, and instead began emulating Dorothy, rip back the curtain and expose the (not-so) powerful Wizard of Boz.

                  The current Tory English Government has committed some of the most catastrophic policy blunders of the last few hundred years, probably since the American War of Independence, history will surely condemn them, so we might as well start right here.

  4. Hamish100 says:

    If you vote No you will remain an equal partner in the U.K. and the EU.


    You will get 13 frigates to build


    If you vote Brexit all the powers with the EU will be moved to Scotland


    If you vote for Independence the world will collapse as we know it, Scotland will disappear under the waves without England’s help


    Johnson will build a bridge to Northern Ireland


    Thatcher – high speed Chunnel train will go to Scotland


    There is no oil left


    You get the idea.

    • Stephen McKenzie says:

      Lord Robertson also said a “Yes” vote in 2014 would threaten the stability of the wider world.

      That did it for me, I had seen “War of the Worlds” and Tom Cruise was an American so we were done for..

  5. […] Wee Ginger Dug Once in a generation: The electorate can’t be bound by a politician’s rhetoric This is the second in a series of articles looking at the topics which will dominate […]

  6. bringiton says:

    You can tell how much England’s Tories value the constituent nations that comprise the present UK.
    Northern Ireland is “allowed” to hold a referendum on it’s contitutional arrangements every 7 years.
    Scotland,once in a generation (i.e. never).
    We clearly have much that the Tories value in comparison to NI and that is why they will fight tooth and nail to hang onto us.
    Democracy for the Tories is just an inconvenience to their continuing position of retaining power in Greater England and they aren’t about to let a bunch of rebellious Scots get in their way.
    We are going to have to take our independence because they,for sure,are not going to give it to us.
    An acrimonious divorce is guaranteed by their disrespect for our country and it’s people and democracy itself.

    • robert alexander harrison says:

      Yet they spout to the english though the likes of the bbc that we scots are a drain on them yet everytime we say ok we are not wanted so we will leave youd expect them to go ok heres your independence now sod of but instead its the hysterical routine of oh no you cant do that Scotland no you cant do that we English wont allow it England will burn when they have to accept the reality once we go free that they needed us all along brexits got them acting like kids throwing a tantrum because its problem after problem with red tape once we go its going to be about money and rescoures england can no longer get.

  7. Bob Lamont says:

    Aye, well set down.

  8. Statgeek says:

    Just see a comparison of mandates. In 2017, the SNP got their lowest vote share since before 2014. It equalled the Tories Brexit referendum mandate.

  9. James Mills says:

    If Scotland ( and by extension Wales and Northern Ireland ) is considered a ‘subset’ of the UK then we really need to overhaul the voting systems used for General Elections and any future UK wide referendums .
    As the combined votes of the ‘subsets’ named cannot defeat the voting strength of England then a great deal of money and other resources can be saved by only having the voters of England eligible in future plebiscites .
    I am sure this democratic solution will find favour with those Tory Parliamentarians whose only wish on leaving the EU was to ”take back control ”.

  10. iusedtobeenglish says:

    So, thinking about it, did the 55% in 2014 vote No to Independence or YES to a different, better union? If the latter, that means that 100% of those voting were rooked, not just the 45%.

    As you say, there’s already a basic commitment been made “promising that the powers of Holyrood would be enshrined in law and put beyond the ability of any Westminster government to alter without the express consent of the Scottish Parliament.” This should be true for all 4 Nations. Maybe all 4 Nations should start holding them to the statement made, which should apply to each constituent part. You’d think even Labour could get behind that. I know they’d argue one Parliament can’t be tied by the promises of another – so give us a referendum then…

    Actually, as there’s a 4 Nations, save the union drive, perhaps a good jumping off point would be to insist it’s used to ‘Build Back Better’. The unit to consist of Scotland, Wales, NI and – because the English most unfairly, don’t have their own parliament – the elected Mayors. Do an Article 50 immediately and base it on relevant bits of the EU stuff, tailored to the UK. To be delivered 6 months before the next GE.

    I’m surprised Bojo hasn’t thought of it himself. He could let somebody else have all the hard work of putting an equitable new union in place and claim the credit. (Rewarding himself by serving the first presidential term of the new council). The 3 ‘subsets’ could make all their own decisions which would stop WM from (what’s the technical term?) bolloxing them up. No Irish border if NI could choose to be in the SM/CU etc. No Barnett formula etc

    Think, Boris my lad… All that kudos, reputation redeemed, no effort, Churchillian legacy etc.

    Then I woke up… 🙂

    • grizebard says:

      “did the 55% in 2014 vote No to Independence or YES to a different, better union? ” Yes, plainly they did. Moreover they were self-evidently led to believe it by all the full-on Bitter Together propaganda, “next thing to full federal” Broon, Uncle Jock Tabloid Vow and all.

      I vividly remember The Observer editorial on the Sunday after the referendum high-mindedly claiming that “the Union will never be the same again”, and the writer didn’t mean a retrenchment ofo rightwing English Nationalist authoritarianism. As I said before, the Smith Commission was the means to implement all the glib promises, and it couldn’t have betrayed them much more if it had tried, resulting (for example) in that “normally” weasel word tacked on to the miserable tax-trap scraps we did get.

      If BoJo was anything like the statesman of your pipedream, he would actually be calling up Nicola and proposing the “Czechoslovak Solution”, a mutually-respectful and orderly dissolution without any expensive and time-wasting fuss-and-bother, thereby pre-empting what otherwise will come anyway but garnering a deal of historical kudos for it forbye.

      I could be happily proved wrong, but that’s light-years beyond the grasp of any of these Tory would-be “overlords” (or their exceptionalist Labour counterparts for that matter, if it were their call instead).

      • iusedtobeenglish says:

        “If BoJo was anything like the statesman of your pipedream, he would actually be calling up Nicola and proposing the “Czechoslovak Solution”, a mutually-respectful and orderly dissolution without any expensive and time-wasting fuss-and-bother, thereby pre-empting what otherwise will come anyway but garnering a deal of historical kudos for it forbye.”

        Crikey, grizebard. I don’t know what you’ve been smoking, but it’s obviously better than the stuff I was on! {rofl}

        I hesitate to suggest this, but could money be involved? Or simply not as politically savvy as they think they are?

        • yesindyref2 says:

          Well, considering the nightmare of the “negotiations” over Brexit, what the Brexiteered rUK Government could do is indeed the velvet divorce with negotiations conducted over tea and cumumber sandwiches, short and sweet, followed by tiffin, and then they could say to the EU “Oh look, this is the way to do it, this is how we BRITS do it”.

          It could be their two fingers up to the previous EU negotiators.

          • iusedtobeenglish says:

            That thought had crossed my mind too, yir2 – esp the last sentence. (We’ll draw a veil over the fact that the easiest model to base the new union on is what is now the EU)

            There were many, genuine Leave voters aot ‘brexiteers’ who wanted the trade but disliked what they perceived as the political elements of the EU. I think they believed that’s what they were getting. Surely even they could support a velvet divorce?

            You’d have to watch the wording though.
            “Nobody’s talking about leaving the SM and EU” could mean “we’re planning for it and intending to do it. Just not talking about it.”

            Note also that Gove didn’t say bojo didn’t express his feelings that the body count didn’t matter, he wasn’t locking down. He said something along the lines of “I didn’t hear those words from the PM”.

            Probably teaching my (political 🙂 ) grandparents to suck eggs here…

            PS: I’m not going to rise to the provocative use of the word BRITS! 😀

  11. Dr Jim says:

    There will be another referendum soon of that I am sure, I’m also sure the proposition will win, it’s what happens after that referendum

  12. Dear Reader,

    can you think of any public servants out there who are holding down three or four jobs at the same time and getting away with it?
    An exception may be a Time Traveller who has developed a Back To The Future Flux Capacitor in his or her Mammie’s basement , a gizmo which defies the up ’til now unshakable laws of physics and defies time and space, a cunning device which creates the illusion that Ubiquitous Boy can be in two places at once, so that we, Joe and Joanne Public, believe the seemingly impossible anomaly, that a physical object can occupy not two, not three, but up to four physical spaces at one and the same time.

    Can we imagine a police officer holding down a second full time job, say as a shopping mall security guard, filling in two time sheets, for the same hours, claiming two wages, and guarding the citizens of their city, arresting bad guys, and ushering 15,000 of Ibrox finest through our streets, while chasing shop lifters, when a Big Supermarket Chain in Braehead was under the misguided impression that PC Plod was guarding their precious stock against shoplifting sorties by the Gorbals Diehards?

    Can a NHS nurse have a second job as a private nurse at the same time, submitting time sheets to two employers for the same hours, and getting away with it?

    For us mere mortals, Dear Duggers, the response to the above would probably be, ‘Of course not. It would be fraud, immoral, who would let such a charlatan away with this?’

    Yet then again, there is Douglas Ross, MP MSP Leader of the Blue Tory Branch Office in the Northern Colony, SFA Linesman, devoted Father of two, who is now as exhausted as we all were getting up in the middle of the night taking his turn with the new born on the ‘Two O’ Clock Feed’ Rota….
    He has to be in London, Edinburgh, Moray, BBC Studios in Glasgow every feckin’ day, Authorising Annie Wells’ expenses forms, managing the Branch Office Tea Fund, asking his Mad Boss Johnson ‘we love you, Boris’ questions from the floor of the ‘House’ in WM, and running about with his wee SFA flag the length and breadth of Jockland…

    It is of course impossible to do all of this…

    He’s coining it in, and Andrew Kerr, or Sally Mag, or Glenn Cam just play along with this Big Fat Con, a state of affairs which we now know from The Queen of Hearts con, is perfectly OK in BBC Land.

    Do they think that the citizens of Scotland are complete idiots?

    Obviously they must do, don’t you think?

    Discuss..I have French Toast to make.

    Can I still call it ‘French’ Toast?

    That grass is no’ going to cut itself, you know.

    A bientot.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      “Can I still call it ‘French’ Toast?” – Mais oui.

    • iusedtobeenglish says:

      “Can I still call it ‘French’ Toast?”

      Ça dépend.

      The French call it pain perdu. Did you have to hunt for the bread. (Cherchez les pains?) If not, you should be OK.

      • I went to great pains to open the bread bin, IUTBE, hacking off two doorsteps from a tiger loaf, and cracking deux oeufs into our last remaining willow pattern soup bowl, a survivor of a dinner set given as a gift decades ago.
        Milk salt pepper, whisk and soak.
        My Everlovin’, a heathen from Belfast, adds sugar. She sweetens her porridge too.
        As they say, you can take them out of Belfast, but you can’t take Belfast out of them.

        BY the cringe, could I go 3 or 4 weeks lolling about in Cap Breton right about now.

        A plus, mes braves.
        Going to watch the fitba’.

    • James Mills says:

      At each of his ( many , many ) TV interviews they should all begin with the question :
      ”Which hat are you wearing at this moment , Mr DRoss ? ”

      • Chapeau, Jaques.

        (Get it, Duggers?)

        Just as well we’re not upstairs on the Clapham omnibus otherwise Nigel Farage would not be pleased hearing all this Froggie Speak in the heart of his Merrie England.

    • andyfromdunning says:

      Correct Jack. I do however remember that Alex Salmond was an MP and an MSP at the same time.

      • That, as they say, Andy, doesn’t make it right.

        I do not distinguish money grabbing freeloaders by party.

        I am dealing in the here and now.
        Dross is hoovering up as much dosh as he can, while basically contributing nothing to preotect the rights and livelihoods of the Moray citizens who voted for him to take on Truss and the Brexit ‘dividend’ at WM, while at the same time, unelected, lolling about on the front bench in Edinburgh, doing absolutely nothing but ‘whingeing from the sidelines’. (Attr. Kezia Fifi Le Bo Dugdale) and presumably finding time to do the ‘leadership’ stuff of running the Branch Office, and take up where he left off as an SFA official, but somehow staying ‘politically’ silent because of a ‘conflict of interest’ on the 15,000 RFC Thugs running riot in our streets.

        He is of course holding out to get to the 12 weeks holidays MPs grant themselves every summer.
        He can get away with it until then?

        I have no time for Salmond, but, mercifully, he has had his 24 months of wreaking havoc, and has left the stage.

        Where the feck is Alister Gentleman Farmer Jack these days?

        As a footnote, I am having immense pleasure reading WGD posts at the moment.

  13. Dr Jim says:

    As the BBC gets slated from all sides the BBC does what it does, it interviews itself and blames the other BBC for the bad man who committed the Royal crime against the Royal woman under instructions from whichever government minister told them to but they’ll never admit that, because the bad man who gets the blame will by now have received his brown envelope payoff that’ll last him forever from the mysterious side of the BBC that nobody knows about
    This is the slow process the BBC carries out in these situations whereby they invent an arm of the BBC that’s obviously nothing to do with them at all at all and begin the reconstruction of the validity of the BBC that’s talking to us as though they had no part in anything nefarious *oh my what a surprise and shock to us all*

    The Prime Minister has waded in to the debacle by saying he will *allow* the BBC to sort this out, well if he has the power to *allow* the impartial unbiased British Broadcasting Corporation to do anything then he has the power not to *allow* implying he had and has the power to instruct them, isn’t that why the British Government hand pick and install the governor general of the BBC in the first place because they are in fact the employers of the BBC, and being the employers of the BBC why is the investigation by the BBC into itself stopping with the staff

    Surely in any normal enquiry the bosses, which is the British Government should be included, if say the NHS, Police or Fire Service was compromised in some way the press and media would normally and immediately demand the explanations and resignations of the Government Minister in charge

    So why is the BBC taking the heat on this all by themselves as though they are a private Corporation with no responsibility to their employers the British government who employ and govern them on behalf of the Nations of the state of Great Britain and the UK

    The British government takes our money in taxation they say to pay for the BBC service and now when they’re caught out lying and behaving badly by all the people in the countries of these Islands the British government are standing back and saying *Nothing to do with us mate we’re just tax collectors we don’t run the BBC*

    But they bloody well do, the British government are the responsible body and answerable to us the taxpayer, they even tell us they are by being the people who appoint the boss of the damn thing on our so called behalf

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Yep, well said Dr.Jim. BBC is a great con, force people to pay for it, control it, plonk your rich Tory donors in charge, allow the organisation to regulate itself.
      It’s like some dystopian nightmare, ‘The Prisoner’ film springs to mind.

      • Bob Lamont says:

        “The Prisoner”, way before it’s time and mostly filmed in Portmeirion, Wales, the giant white balloons always remained a mystery…
        Then along came the GE of 2019….

  14. kersk6 says:

    Well said

  15. Capella says:

    I heard the most amazing thing on Radio Scotland this morning; an interview about Israel and the Middle East conflict that actually spelt out the history and causes and current barriers to peace. The interviewee was a former British ambassador to the Middle East. I forget his name and I just went to find the clip for your edification only to find that the programme is “not available”. Everything else is available. The clip was from approx 9.15 – 9.30.

    I suppose someone will be going through it and removing anything important.


    It will be available “soon”.

    • Capella says:

      Well the clip has now appeared. It was Sir Richard Dalton who was interviewed.
      1.21.30 – approx 1.30

    • Capella, May I suggest that you look up ‘The Balfour Declaration’, a 1917 ‘pledge’ by the Empire to back the Arabs in Palestine, who made up 92% of the population at the time, and perhaps read accounts of the ensuing 30 years in that torn region, culminating in English (sic) withdrawal ,leaving yet another divided ‘territory’ destabilised and internally at war.

      It is the Great British Way….India Pakistan, Ireland, Cypress…
      Give up the colony but make sure that it is in flames as you leave.

      It’s the rhetoric of today’s Brit Imperialists and their pals in broadcasting and the Dead Tree Scrolls.

      From Curtice’s ‘Scotland is split right down the middle’, to the gaslighting pounding repetition of Dross, Sarwar, Rennie, Murray, Jardine and Jack, that no one wants another divisive Referendum like the last one, where family members and friends turned on each other and violence and destruction stalked the land, in the form of Jim Murphy, one of a band of several hundred MPs and Lords who are members of a curious group known as ‘the Friends of Israel’, being ‘pelted’ with eggs, and Ian Murray’s constituency office windaes being plastered with the Bad EssEnnPee’s YES stickers.

      It was carnage, I tell you.

      Last week end’s ridiculously tagged Loyalist ‘celebrations’ and the wanton destruction of property, threats of violence, and defiance of the law of the land, was one of several sinister violent hate filled agitations orchestrated by The Peeple, to warn us all of the carnage and mayhem which would follow any ‘split down the middle’, ‘divisive’ Referendum and a YES result.

      You may recall David Torrance and others ominously referring to the Independence Movement and the Brit Upsurge of Blackshirt civil disobedience as the ‘Ulsterisation’ of Scottish politics.
      They didn’t have to look far for a blueprint of violence to usurp Scotland’s democracy, did they?

      It is not for nothing that Murdo Fraser tagged ‘The Queen’s Eleven’ on to his twitter handle, and Professor Two Jobs Adam Tomkins inserted the sinister WATP into his account name.

      Some may say, but I couldn’t possibly comment, that the 15,000 thugs who rampaged through our streets last week end are the Brits’ Blackshirts, their heavy mob, and the recent organised public disorder designed as dire threatening warnings, portents of Things To Come if we dare push this Independence nonsense any further.

      There was nothing spontaneous about last week end’s ‘show of strength’.

      They opend the flood gates and swamped our land with evil clod hopping thugs.

      Paul’s excellent piece lays bare the nonsense of the ‘once in a generation’ bluster, still brought out by every Brit Nat from Marr to Magnusson as a last gasp clincher..

      They know that independence is inevitable now.

      Dross Rennie and Sarwar are there to stall as long as possible, to squeeze out a few more years for England to exploit Scotland and plunder our resources, before leaving their Golden Goose colony, ideally in bloody civil war and our cattle and sheep ‘plied high’ in revenge fuelled bonfires.

      Looking forward to a Cup Final with not a hint of Sellick and Ranjers involvement.

      • Capella says:

        I know about the Balfour Declaration. What was surprising was that the BBC allowed a bright and intelligent person who knows what he’s talking about, spell it out. It = perfidious Albion dividing and ruling as ever st the cost of millions of lives and suffering – ongoing.

      • ArtyHetty says:

        Excellent comment. The thugs on the streets of Glasgow last weekend was a chest thumping stunt by the Brit state imo.

    • ArtyHetty says:

      He won’t be invited back then. It’s amazing that you say it was ‘amazing’ to hear a bit of truth on BBC radio.

  16. Hamish100 says:

    The BBC and bias goes together.
    A work colleague advised me that to get into bbc Scotland you had to be a blue nose, a friend or relation worked there, labourite or be as neutral compliant and uninteresting so the bosses did not see you as a threat to the order.

  17. Hamish100 says:

    Should have said my colleague had a family member working there.

    The story of some serious going’s on with the snp leadership was mentioned a few years ago. Wouldn’t go into details but looking back I assume recent events are part of this. Said there is more?

    Now it could have been a wind up but I wonder what stories and papers have on politicians maybe even bloggers and sit on the story and vice versa. For the rest of us we have to fight the good fight for Independence.

  18. Mike Fenwick says:

    Whenever you hear “once in a generation” here are 3 replies:

    Theresa May – House of Commons – 4th December 2018:
    Ultimately membership of any union that involves the pooling of sovereignty can only be sustained with the consent of the people.

    David Davis – Marr Show – 10th March 2019:
    There is no other treaty in the world I am aware of where a sovereign nation undertakes to join up, and can only leave when the other side says so.

    Attorney General Geoffrey Cox: House of Commons: 12th March 2019.
    “A sovereign state has the right to withdraw if a treaty is no longer compatible with its fundamental interests.”

    Just wish Yes were seen and heard to use any of those 3 comments and any of those appeared on Billboards across Scotland.

  19. Clydebuilt says:

    Couldn’t get a National yesterday . . . Tried several shops
    Was this widespread?

  20. yesindyref2 says:

    In all fairness getting “Lord” Hall, Lord of all the porkies, to hold an internal inquiry into the BBC, was a bit like getting Ronnie Biggs to hold an investigation into the Kray twins, very possibly with some of the same suspects.

    Where’s DI Arnott when you need him?

  21. Capella says:

  22. Jonathan Marshall says:

    Nicely summed up… The catch 22 that Scotland faces… I really liked the quotes and the idea of Billboards… It could be crowd funded and would be an excellent way to begin to make people think… Needs a catchy memorable slogan… Or maybe just “Once in a lifetime?’ Followed by the quote…. I’m sure Politician and individuals supporting the Union have probably said loads about the right to self determination… Time to dredge them up. I know I watched an interview pre 2014 where someone… Michael Forsyth?… Said ‘If Scotland wants Independence it just has to vote for the SNP’

  23. Capella says:

    OT – if you like Glastonbury they’re livesreaming it for free after the original set up crashed.

  24. Hamish100 says:

    BBC r4 , Kirsty wark in a nauseating obn with the lords, ladies, Dames, sirs and baroness who spent millions of pounds of our money for the London Olympic bid sorry Britain’s bid as we all benefitted from it. Another lie.

  25. Capella says:

    Watching Glastonbury just now – absolutely stunning sets and acts. Diversity writ large. The UK may be divided into those watching the Eurovision Song Contest and those watching the Afro Vision Song Festival. If there’s one thing about England they can be proud about it’s Glastonbury.

  26. Alex Clark says:

    Oh dear, I can only think that the reputation of the UK in Europe has gone down the stank.

    Italy have won the Eurovision – with the UK finishing rock bottom on ‘nul points’


    • Dr Jim says:

      Are we laughing? damn tootin we are,*nul points* so good, so good, you gotta love them Europeans they know how to say F off and stay Effed off

      Scotland becomes Independent and we’ll win it in the first year with any old song anybody can come up with drunk in the bath while eatin a Kebab

      • Capella says:


      • Tam the Bam says:

        Its official!……..UK Eurovision crew have been relegated !!! … lol.

        • Every cloud has a silver lining, Tam. It is rumoured that the UK entry is to be adapted as the theme tune for the BBC quiz show , ‘Pointless.’

          Couldn’t resist it.
          England (sic) is not in Europe now, so why are they still ‘allowed’ to submit an entry for a European competition?
          I know, give it a rest, Jack.
          Congrats on Morton’s Great Escape, btw, Tam.

          They sent the Queen Elizabeth II HMS White Elephant off from Portsmouth, stacked with Yankee ‘planes to China tonight, to shake an angry fist at the Commie B’s.

          God, the watching world must wonder what’s going on in Merrie England.

        • Drew Anderson says:

          No relegation for the “big five”: France; Germany; Italy; Spain & the UK Tam.

          They pony up most of Eurovision’s finance, so have guaranteed slots in the Song Contest final.

          On the other hand, it’s a shoo-in that the UK entry will be looking at perennial humiliation for the foreseeable.

          • iusedtobeenglish says:

            In hopes of a sympathy vote, they could ask Scotland to do the entry next year (if we haven’t left yet).

            That way a British entrant could come first, or the Scottish performers could tank… 🙂

      • iusedtobeenglish says:

        “Scotland becomes Independent and we’ll win it in the first year with any old song anybody can come up with drunk in the bath while eatin a Kebab”

        Haven’t you just described most of the late 60s/70s? 😀

        “Are we laughing? “

        Did ‘Le Royaume Uni’ deserve to be told to F Off? Absolutely!

        In fact,my daughter (in London this time – no choice, not many jobs in her field) and I had the annual virtual Euro Party we’ve had since she was in Uni. Our first comments were:
        “OK. So who hasn’t the ‘UK’ offended?”

        “Dunno. Australia?

        But I’m not really laughing. Because, politics aside, a bloke who was very popular with the other crews got so humiliated that even Graham Norton sounded a bit upset. And he’s never upset! As he said, it wasn’t the worst and it didn’t deserve 0.

        Musically, it wasn’t brilliant – and it wasn’t Eurovision material. Shows how out of touch and dated Yook is.

        Scotland could have done better, even without the kebab.

      • iusedtobeenglish says:

        Did you notice the German contribution?

        A giant hand making a V sign? It could even be adapted to middle finger only. Such subtlety. That’s German design for you 😀

        And people say the Germans have no sense of humour…

        • Drew Anderson says:

          As told to me, by a German I was working with:

          Q. How many Germans does it take to change a lightbulb?

          A. One; because we’re efficient and we have no sense of humour!

    • jfngw says:

      I hear rumours the BBC is thinking of just having a ‘Great British Song Contest’ next year. The votes will be only from the UK, you can vote for your own country and the voting will be weighted by country population.

      • Dr Jim says:

        So the “Great English song contest” then, just like the great British 4 country one nation preciousss union Brexit referendum where the great British great English people get what they vote for and everybody else gets stuffed, democracy British style eh

      • iusedtobeenglish says:

        But what about the Crown Protectorates? Gibraltar especially. Surely they’re British too? And Ireland? Oh, of course, it’ll be like brexit – they don’t count. Gibraltar especially.

        Anyway, away with this negativity! I think it’s a good idea and I think Scotland should get right behind it! With – in the spirit of co-operation – a few tweaks…

        1) Seeing as how we are “Four Nations, but one ‘country'”, each nation should have an entry.
        2) As ‘the Minister for the Union’ has declared us to be only 1 country we can’t vote for ourselves. So we should go global and ask the rest of the world to vote for the individual nation. (They can’t vote for themselves either – this isn’t the EU, you know…)
        3) Each performance has to wear a recognisable national dress. (It’ll be fun. And uphold Great British Traditions. The English dancers can be Morrismen…)

        Go on. You know you want to. And what could possibly go wrong?

  27. Alex Clark says:

    Chickens coming home to roost for Johnson and his useless Cabinet, but other than in Scotalnd will anyone really care?

    Cummings is expected to use Wednesday’s hearings to accuse Hancock of telling repeated “lies” about preparedness for the crisis and to explain why he repeatedly tried to persuade Johnson to fire his health secretary.

    Officials in the Cabinet Office are also concerned that Cummings will accuse Johnson of missing key meetings on the crisis because he was working on a biography of Shakespeare, the money from which he needed to fund his divorce from Marina Wheeler, his second wife. Johnson missed five Cobra emergency meetings at the start of the crisis.

    There is also concern that he will reveal damaging details of the decision to decant patients from hospitals into care homes, where the virus ran rampant at a cost of thousands of lives.

    He also accuses the government in the Sunday Times of following a “herd immunity” strategy until it became obvious many hundreds of thousands would die.

    • James Mills says:

      Regardless of what Cummings may say , short of rogering Prince Charles on the steps of St Paul’s while burning a Union Fleg , Johnson’s poll rating in England will continue to out perform the Labour leader , Sir …something or other !

  28. Capella says:

    I wonder how many people in Scotland this morning are:
    a) Eurovision Song contest fans
    b) wondering if it’s time that Scotland had its own entry?

  29. Alex Clark says:

    I’ve always known John Redwood was a raging Brexiteer and to the right of Atilla the Hun. In a piece for the Tory online fanzine, Conservative Home, he writes what appears to be an attack on the BBC but really it is an attack on Scotland and of how England and the English are always ignored.

    It has helped nationalist movements in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland gain more voice for protest and grievance. It has stood for the continuing submission of our country to government from Brussels against the pro-Brexit majority. It has belittled and ignored England, perhaps with a view to building an English backlash to nationalisms elsewhere in our Union, as the SNP and others want…

    The BBC’s treatment of England is a disgrace. It is as if our country did not exist. We are treated in England to a regular diet of commentary on the words and deeds of the SNP government in Scotland. The BBC gives Scotland its own Scottish news, and then muddles the national newscast with English news, because it cannot bring itself to have an English news to match the Scottish news…

    That’s just a taster, there is a lot more, all in the same vein. The man has finally lost his last marble.


    • Capella says:

      Stark staring bonkers – to coin a phrase – a very English phrase 😂

    • jfngw says:

      Is he arguing for an ‘English Six’ news programme. He could have had it if they had backed news programmes for the Nations. Of course what he wants is purely the English news with the other nations just forced to endure it. This is a man who when Welsh Secretary couldn’t even be bothered learning the Welsh anthem, or maybe during that mumbling he was actually singing Jerusalem.

    • iusedtobeenglish says:



      Don’t they have the news where they are then?

  30. jfngw says:

    The BBC is useless as far as Scotland is concerned but to hear Priti Patel and Boris Johnson lecturing them on integrity is pushing the boundaries of comedy to the limit.

  31. Alex Clark says:

    The Lord Advocate James Wolfe and Solicitor General Alison Di Rollo are to resign, It will now be up to the FM to nominate who are to replace them.

    I can’t help thinking that this is related to the proposed Referendum Bill the government will pass if Johnson once more refuses a Section 30 order and the assessment of the Bill’s legality ends up being decided in the Supreme Court.


    • grizebard says:

      Interesting, very.

      More “getting the ducks in a row”. Or some such expression. How anyone can doubt that a showdown isn’t in the eventual offing is a mystery to me. The new appointments should be even more indicative.

      • Petra says:

        Panic is setting in Grizebard 😀.

        ‘Scottish independence referendum organised by Holyrood could be legal, warns former Tory MSP (Tomkins).’

        ..”He said an option for the UK Government would be to legislate to end this legal confusion, but warned the political “optics” of this move would be challenging. The UK constitution, like all successful constitutions, relies on shared understandings between the political branches and the courts, and those shared understandings have taken a hammering in the last few years.”..


        • Alex Clark says:

          What a U-turn from no less an authority on the constitution Tomkins, this is quite significant and the temperature is rising.

        • grizebard says:

          “challenging”!! To say the very least. As per the debate upthread with marconatrix, it virtually self-destructs the Unionist position at one fell – very fell – swoop. The English “overlords” {ahem} have to be totally desperate to even think of giving that a whirl. They might as well quit while they’re just behind rather than totally sunk.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Yes, but they do seem to only serve one term, plus of minus a couple of years.

      Considering the Salmond enquiry but also Rangers, possibly good to start with a clean slate and no governmental history. Laura Dunlop could be a good choice – she likes government to be transparent, and could engender cross-party confidence.

      I guess it doesn’t stop Wolffe being appointed part of the ScotGov legal team in the event of the UK Gov taking it to court.

  32. Hamish100 says:

    I do wonder at times why individuals use a blog before their brains.
    I see Rhiannon Spear: SNP activist and councillor apparently wrote on Twitter that Scotland hates the U.K.

    I think most of us can recognise that the word “ hate” should be used rarely but to have a councillor using such terms is just silly. According to The National she has now removed the offending blog.
    Has nobody told our elected members again — think before you write.
    I note folk are been asked do you wish to be a councillor for 2022.

    I hope those hoping to represent their constituents for the snp will think on this. Delete Twitter, the holiday snaps at the beach or George Square.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      After all these years of SNP politician stupidity on twitter, the SNP still haven’t done anything about it – like educate their moronic tweeters. And it’s us have to clean up their poo. Offenders like her should be sacked from the party.

      Supposedly it was a good song, and her juvenile comment was not likely to persuade soft NOes or the undecided.

    • Dr Jim says:

      This story was slightly inflated and conflated, because the replies from Britnats was that she hated the English if she said UK when what she meant to articulate was that we hated the institution of the UK and not people but chose her words poorly, but it kinda shows that Britnats are even more stupid and nationalistic than she was but they don’t even know it

      • robert alexander harrison says:

        Theres that whole uk is England rubbish again jim which is saying if your british your English they dont even realise that they’ve inevitably just stated it by going ape over a tweet.

  33. Petra says:

    And let’s not forget that the Tories, Labour and LibDems signed up to the Scots holding Indyref2 (3, 4 or 5 etc 😀) if they so wished ”in the future”, beyond 2014, not when some wee plonker in London said so or not.

    ‘Scotland’s right to choose: putting Scotland’s future in Scotland’s hands.’

    ..”The Smith Commission took place in the context both of all participants accepting the outcome of the independence referendum, and of three of the five parties represented having campaigned for Scotland to stay part of the United Kingdom. Nevertheless, under its heads of agreement, the Commission concluded- ”It is agreed that nothing in this report prevents Scotland becoming an independent country in the future should the people of Scotland so choose.”



    ‘Wellbeing economics – the key to a 60% Yes vote for Scottish independence.’

    ..”Although it has wide ranging popularity across all age groups wellbeing economics appeals most to the older generations (often our most vulnerable) and those are the ones who need a safety net to allow them to vote with their hearts and switch to supporting Scottish independence.”..


  34. Petra says:

    Imo, the number one reason to get out of this ”Union.”

    ‘Tory cuts risk nuclear catastrophe in ‘remote Scotland’, 40 minutes from largest city.’



    Clarifying the ”banking” situation.

    ‘Will the Scottish banks leave Scotland after independence?’

    ..”To conclude, it is not possible for any of the banks that operate in Scotland currently to ‘move’ out of Scotland. If they wish to keep their Scottish business and continue to generate profits in Scotland then they can only do so via a company registered in Scotland with, in due course, a banking licence from the Scottish Reserve Bank.”..


    • grizebard says:

      Personally, I would rather start afresh in that sector than have any of the existing nominally-Scottish ones “stay”. And The (new) Bank of Scotland would be the national institution.

  35. Petra says:

    Did anyone else see the not so Priti Patel on Marr this morning dismiss having breached the Ministerial Code by saying that they had more important things to deal with right now. Additionally having the brass neck trying to defend dragging two men from their homes in Scotland, where they have lived for over 10 years, to be deported to India, as she allowed over 20,000 visitors from India to enter the UK before it was added to the UK’s red list of countries 🙄. All in the name of getting another smelly trade deal.

    This is her latest ”border” wheeze.

    ‘Home Secretary Priti Patel defends new electronic border scheme.’



    Sinister or what?


  36. Petra says:

    ‘Trade deals: Farming, fishing and rural voices.’



    ‘Britain on Life Support.’

    ..”Picture Jenny tending to the fetid hulk of the Prime Minister, the epitome of broken Britain captured in a moment of life and death, the underpaid worker literally nursing back to life the priapic Etonian buffoon only to be rewarded with a manipulated photo-opportunity at No 10 and a paltry 1% pay offer.”..

    ..”The irony in all of this is that Britain is unraveling not just because of the multiple constitutional crises in Ireland, Wales and Scotland but because the very institutions, the sinews of ‘Britain’, like the NHS have been sold off, privatised and used to line the pockets of Johnson’s mates.”..


  37. Petra says:

    Video of Nicola Sturgeon. You know the woman who doesn’t want Scotland to be an independent country 😀.

    ‘Tory dominance is likely to hasten break-up of the union. Johnson’s muscular unionism could end up tearing his ‘precious union’ apart.’



    That’s him telt 😛.

    ‘Nicola Sturgeon teaches Jeremy Vine a lesson about politics.’


  38. Bob Lamont says:

    OT but worth scrolling through mobile.twitter.com/dgurdasani1/status/1396373990986375171 for a complete refresh on the “let the bodies pile high..” Johnson comment..
    If the experts are profoundly worried, we should be too…

  39. Petra says:

    ”It’s worth reading these 111 powers taken from SGov. now Brexit has happened & we can easily see how the Brexit UK government is using them to our, Scotland’s, detriment @AngusRobertson.” https://mobile.twitter.com/annewitha_e/status/1396057404614352900


    No mention of this in the news?

    ‘The 10-year-old (Scottish) boy who beat a chess grandmaster – but didn’t want to boast.’


  40. Petra says:

    Busting another myth!

    ‘The myth of the ‘struggling schools.’



    Bella Caledonia:- ”Royal family charm offensive. Apart from being a wonderfully stupid idea, aren’t they supposed to be, you know, non-political? https://mobile.twitter.com/bellacaledonia/status/1396516557229068289

  41. Petra says:

    Dr Mike Galsworthy:- ”When even the ex-PM of Australia takes the piss out of UK-Australia trade deal…” https://mobile.twitter.com/mikegalsworthy/status/1395841102868066308


    ‘Australia trade deal: Douglas Ross told to keep promise to Scottish farmers.’

    ..“I’ll never vote to allow hormone-injected beef or chlorinated chicken into the UK. It would need legislation to bring those foodstuffs into the UK and I can promise you, if it ever came to it, I’ll be out there on the frontline with farmers saying no, never.”..


  42. Petra says:

    ‘Legal bid launched to stop Boris Johnson deleting WhatsApp messages about Covid decisions.’



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


  43. Capella says:

    @ Petra – The Scotsman article on the 111 powers from EU which Westminster is keeping from the Scottish Parliament. It’s quite extensive. The article was published in 2017 and here’s the archived link:


    • Thanks, Capella. I’ve archived this not so ‘soft’ invasion of Scotland by our neighbour to the South.

      • Capella says:

        The article is old so there may have been changes since then.

        I notice our Alba colleagues are furious that NS hasn’t held a referendum every year since 2014 and AS would have had one as soon as this power grab was mooted.
        Also, Brexiteers will point out that if we were in the EU these powers would rest with Brussels.
        Personally I trust “Brussels” a lot more than “London”. At least there is some semblance of negotiation and consensus in the EU.

        • Dr Jim says:

          If the EU want to change or make law they consult the other nations involved and come to an agreement that everyone accepts and works with, the English UK of Great Britain believes itself to be the centre of the Unionverse and consults nobody on anything because they are superior to and above all others and become puzzled and outraged when nobody else agrees but press on with whatever they want anyway

          The UK don’t make law, they believe they are law


        • Capella, some what long, but my post 10.06.20 discussed the Power grab which now gives Liz Truss the powers to destroy Scotland’s agriculture, farming and fishing industry.

          Not long before Jack Daniels’ ‘Scotch’ whisk(e)y floods the market with cut price rot gut, along with kangaroo sparkling white plonk, and Brazilian steroid steaks, and Malaysian Domestos chicken, finger lickin’ good..

          Minimum pricing of alcohol in Scotland no longer applies.
          Enjoy thawing out your twelve month old frozen lamb cutlets.

          We did warn them.
          Where is a Yoon to answer to all of this when you need them?

          The elephant in the room.

          Brexit No Deal will happen 31st December 2020.

          Are we really to just sit back and let it happen without a fight?
          Once out of Europe on a No Deal US Trade Deal basis. The English Parliament will set about destroying Scotland, from New Year’s Day.
          BY May 2021 we could have lost everything; our health service, Education and Policing, at the flick of a WM switch.
          I cannot imagine the SNP and Greens, and probably ‘Scottish’ Labour going into the May 2021 election not declaring that this will be a ‘referendum’ on Independence. It is unthinkable that the SNP would prevaricate yet again. A vote for us is a vote for Independence NOW, in May 2021.

          But there is a very real risk that England will have burnt the fields, slaughtered the cattle and poisoned the wells by then.
          The fight starts now, even during the pandemic.
          Agricultural support – Policies and regulations relating to income, market support, agriculture, productivity and maintenance grants.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

          Elements of reciprocal healthcare

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

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

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

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

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

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

          Food compositional standards – Minimum standards for a range of specific food commodities such as sugars, coffee, honey, caseins, condensed milk, chocolate, jams, fruit juices and bottled water.

          Food labelling – Requirements on provision of information to consumers on food labels.

          Hazardous substances planning – Land-use planning, including: planning controls relating to the storage of hazardous substances and handling development proposals for hazardous establishments.

          Implementation of EU Emissions Trading System – This directive area establishes the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme for greenhouse gas. The Scheme sets a maximum amount of greenhouse gas that can be emitted by all participating installations and aircrafts; these operators then monitor, verify and report their emissions, and must surrender allowances equivalent to their emissions annually.

          Mutual recognition of professional qualifications – Directives that create systems for the recognition for professional qualifications and professional experience throughout the EU. Allowing EU professionals to work in regulated professions in other EU states on either a permanent or temporary basis.

          Nutrition health claims, composition and labelling – Nutrition and health claims made on food; food for special medical purposes and weight control; food intended for infants; the addition of vitamins and other substances to food; and food supplements.

          Plant health, seeds and propagating material – Import and internal EU movement of plants and plant products, risk assessment of new plant pests and outbreak management. Assurance and auditing of policies across the UK to protect plant biosecurity. Requirements for plant variety rights, registration of plant varieties and quality assurance of marketed seed and propagating material.

          Public procurement – The regime provided by the EU procurement Directives, covering public procurement contracts for supplies, services, works and concessions above certain financial thresholds awarded by the public sector and by utilities operating in the energy, water, transport and postal services sectors.

          Services Directive – Directive that seeks to realise the full potential of services markets in Europe by removing legal and administrative barriers to trade by increasing transparency and making it easier for businesses and consumers to provide or use services in the EU Single Market.”
          A year has passed, and all is unfolding as predicted.

          I’m sure our politicians have been preparing for all of this and firming up plans for the Indyref2 campaign.

          We have reached tipping point now.

          There shall be a Referendum.

    • Petra says:

      Thanks for that Capella. I just noticed Angus Robertson’s name and don’t have a lot of time in the morning to check everything out. Still be interesting to keep an eye on these powers to see what they’ve been getting up to / may get up to.

  44. JoMax says:

    Re Petra’s link above @ 8.17 and ‘the Royal Family charm offensive’.

    Let’s re-phrase that:

    “(The Queen of) England expects that every Scot will do his duty”.

    I have an old friend who’s been around almost as long as the Queen and although an SNP voter and Yesser, she persists in claiming that the Queen is just a figurehead and ‘does what she’s told’ because she has no power. I cannot dissuade her otherwise.

    • JoMax says:

      ‘persuade’ even.

      • Dr Jim says:

        When British Prime Minsters attend the Queen for assent to bills passed by parliament they carry one other document in case the Queen miraculously refused to sign the bill presented to her

        The document of abdication

        If she doesn’t sign what the parliament tells her to sign she signs her own abdication because in law the parliament is sovereign, not the sovereign

        The Queen is a stick of rock, the Blackpool tower, a tourist attraction and a deceit of sovereignty used as a symbol of one time greatness

        • Golfnut says:

          There is no law in the UK since 1707 that makes the union parliament sovereign. The sovereignty issue is a fig leaf which covers the complicit nature of the monarchy, or it’s the Parliament that takes the blame.

  45. Capella says:

    The Queen is also the Queen of Scots. The Declaration of Arbroath spelt out what we would do if the monarch didn’t protect our interests. Get rid of them and choose another.

    There are pros as well as cons to having a hereditary system for deciding on the Head of State. Stability, continuity, non party partisan incumbent, providing the HoS is non political and impartial and does protect the interests of the people.
    My favourite places in Europe are all monarchies – Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands. But I like Switzerland too. OTOH I can think of quite a few republics that I wouldn’t want to live in. And let’s not mention Donald Trump 🙂

    So I wouldn’t make an issue of this before independence. Plenty time afterwards to decide on who should be the Head of State.

    • Bob Lamont says:


    • James Mills says:

      Re. Head of State job :
      If the pay is good and the hours aren’t too onerous , I would be willing to give it a go !
      However , I would need Saturdays and a mid-week day off to watch my football team .

      Would this be a deal-breaker ?

  46. Alex Clark says:

    Pritti Patel defends the immigration raid in Glasgow by the Home Office.

    “In response to Glasgow and the removal of people that had no legal right to be in the UK, I’ve already said we will continue to do that, that is effectively what the British public have voted for, [what] they want.”

    So there you are, she’s giving the public what they wanted though she doesn’t say “which public”.


    • Bob Lamont says:

      Aye, her nose was well bent out of shape by the Pollockshields incident…
      The practice of dawn raids in Scotland had previously been suspended, so there was more than just a degree of provocation involved, during Eid, in the FM’s own constituency, after SNP having won a landslide..
      It was all the more poignant to note Tom Harris (haven’t read it) had published a piece in the Telegraph today accusing SNP of playing “cynical politics” over this, without any sense of irony whatsoever…

      • Dr Jim says:

        Scotland’s decided on its own points based system and deemed her pointless

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