When calling out a liar’s lies is worse than lying

I had intended to post a new blog piece yesterday (Thursday) but I had a very intensive ( and painful) physiotherapy session which left me wiped out. The physio said I’m an unusual case as I have recovered good movement but sensation and proprioception (awareness of where your limbs are in space) remain very poor. So she did a lot of work aimed at reawakening my numbed side with the aim of retraining my brain so that it remembers that the left hand side of the body exists. This involves subjecting my arm hand and leg to a lot of stretching, pulling and manipilation in order to generate strong nerve impulses which I can actually feel. Because of the damage caused by the stroke this means that my brain currently interprets these signals as pain, so the session hurt a lot and left me exhausted from the sensory overload the stroke damaged parts of my brain was subjected to.

On the way out I was definitely walking better and my shoulder is not as stiff and painful as it was. No pain no gain as they say. The physio is confident that I will continue to make improvement. She also suggested that I make an application for PIP as she thinks I am eligible for it. However I will have to make an appointment with the local Citizens Advice Bureau in order to make the application as I can’t hold a pen or fill in the form myself.

By the time I got home I was totally drained and exhausted, so no blog update – I went for a lie down. I’m still feeling pretty fatigued today, but I do feel better when I manage to get something written. So here we go.

Labour MP Dawn Butler has been suspended from the House of Commons for stating the obvious. After detailing several examples of Boris Johnson’s barefaced lies and citing a short video by the campaigner Peter Stefanovic which highlights – or rather lowlights – many more examples of the Prime Minister’s deceit, falsehoods, misleading statements and outright lies. You can see the video here

There’s even a website listing Johnson’s many lies, although only up to December 2019. https://boris-johnson-lies.com/ After that month’s election the site owner gave up, overwhelmed by the Conservative tsunami of falsehoods and “alternative facts”. There have been so many more since that at this point it would be easier to enumerate the truths – I’m sure there must be some – and assume that everything else uttered by a senior Conservative was a bare faced lie. Certainly Michael Gove lies as frequently and even more glibly than his boss.

So it’s not like pointing out that Boris Johnson is a liar is a controversial or contentious thing to say. The evidence that Boris Johnson is a liar is abundant and of long standing. It’s a matter of record that Johnson was sacked from the Telegraph for lying. It’s also a matter of record that he was sacked from David Cameron’s government for lying about an affair. His lies are well documented, numerous, well known, and habitual. Johnson’s old boss at the Telegraph newspaper Max Hastings, once described his former employee in damning terms saying, “There is room for debate about whether he is a scoundrel or mere rogue, but not much about his moral bankruptcy, rooted in a contempt for truth,” adding, “he cares for no interest save his own fame and gratification.”

Johnson has had several affairs, which means that he has no compunction about lying to his nearest and dearest just as he is prepared to lie to his boss and his colleagues. We even know that he was quite happy to tell a barefaced lie to the Queen in order to secure the prorogation of Parliament in an attempt to avoid scrutiny of his Brexit deal. If he’s going to lie to those people you can guarantee that he won’t have any problems lying to those he considers his social inferiors – which for an Eton boy is pretty much the entire population.

Yet when Dawn Butler called out the Prime Minister for their lies, their corruption, cronyism, their sleaze and their enabling of racists, suddenly it was her who was the bad guy. She was ordered by the deputy speaker to withdraw her remarks, and when she refused, pointing out quite correctly that it’s vital to hold liars to account otherwise they’ll just keep lying, she was instructed to leave the chamber. When you have a parliament in which it is a greater sin by far to call out a liar than it is to actually lie, you have a parliament which is unfit for purpose.

And that is precisely what we have in the UK, a Parliament that is unfit for purpose, incapable of performing the task of holding the executive branch of the government to account. In his excoriating account of Johnson’s character, published in The Guardian early in 2019 as Johnson was poised to secure the leadership of the Conservative party and become Prime Minister( link here) Hastings warned that Johnson’s “premiership will almost certainly reveal a contempt for rules, precedent, order and stability.”

That has proven to be the case, the problems compounded by the challenges of a pandemic which would have tested the capacities of even the most competent leadership to the limit. Johnson and his cronies instead used the pandemic as an opportunity to enrich their friends as they hummed and hawed, delayed, stalled and back tracked on public health, mixing vital messages that could have saved thousands of lives as often as Johnson mixes his metaphors. We have a British Government which lies without compunction, which tears up international agreements the moment they no longer suit, which is prepared to break international law and which treats the public and the devolved nations with arrogant contempt.

A Parliament hidebound by arcane rules and archaic conventions is utterly incapable of holding these charlatans, shysters and moral bankrupts to account. Dawn Butler’s expulsion proves that, as if we didn’t already know. The British Parliament is performative not practical. It exists primarily to give a veneer of democratic responsibility to a government which suffers no effective checks on its absolute power.

And that is why devolution is now in great danger. Brexit removed the last significant constraints upon the British government. The devolved governments represent the last bastion of power within the UK which is beyond the control of Downing Street. Just this week alone we have seen two assaults on the devolution settlement, the so-called UK Shared Prosperity Fund, the replacement for the EU social and structural funding which were disbursed to the devolved governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Unlike the EU funding, which was controlled by the devolved governments, the new fund will be entirely controlled by Westminster, even though it is to be spent on devolved competencies. It represents another power grab by Downing Street at the expense of the devolution settlement. Remember that Vow that the Tories signed up to in 2014 in an effort to persuade Scotland to reject independence, the Vow that promised no changes to devolution without Holyrood’s consent? You won’t be surprised to learn that was a lie too.

Holyrood can’t protect Scotland from this British Government of liars, cheats, charlatans and racists. Scotland’s Westminster MPs can’t protect Scotland either. Dawn Foster made a noble stand against Johnson’s lies and deceits, a stand that was also made by the SNP’s Westminster leader just a couple of weeks ago. But to no effect. Westminster is not an institution which can cope with creatures as morally and ethically bankrupt as Johnson, Gove, and the rest of this shameless bunch of liars.

There are still those in Scotland who harbour fond hopes that the British system of government can be reformed, that power can be distributed away from the office of the Prime Minister and decentralised. It can’t. Despite the lies and the sleaze, despite the criminal incompetence, too many in the UK are still in thrall to the myth of British exceptionalism, even though these recent months have revealed that it’s a myth with lethal consequences.

Escaping this deceitful and ethically bankrupt Britain is not just essential in order to preserve Scottish self-government, it’s a moral imperative. When it’s considered a worse sin to call out a liar for his lies than it is to lie, it’s time to get out.

NEW MODERATION POLICY

In the wake of recent events I am determined that this site will not become a home for bigots and conspiracy theorists. They will not be welcome here. Moderation is the most stressful part of running a blog, but this site is going to continue to make the positive case for independence. With this in mind as of today a new moderation policy is in force.

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If you intend to spend the next four years undermining the SNP, the Scottish Government and the pro-independence parties that the great majority of independence supporters voted for, you can do so somewhere else, because you’re not going to do it here. The reminder that has regularly appeared on this site is not a serving suggestion. It will be rigorously enforced. If you don’t like this rule – there is a small x at the top right of your screen. Click it, close this page and go elsewhere.

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76 comments on “When calling out a liar’s lies is worse than lying

  1. Capella says:

    Sorry to hear of the trials of rehab. I do hope strength improves soon. Loafing in the garden soaking up the sun should also help 🙂

    Let us remember once more Rory Stewart’s epic paragraph on the lying accomplishments of Boris Johnston:

    Johnson is after all the most accomplished liar in public life — perhaps the best liar ever to serve as prime minister. Some of this may have been a natural talent — but a lifetime of practice and study has allowed him to uncover new possibilities which go well beyond all the classifications of dishonesty attempted by classical theorists like St Augustine. He has mastered the use of error, omission, exaggeration, diminution, equivocation and flat denial. He has perfected casuistry, circumlocution, false equivalence and false analogy. He is equally adept at the ironic jest, the fib and the grand lie; the weasel word and the half-truth; the hyperbolic lie, the obvious lie, and the bullshit lie — which may inadvertently be true.
    – RORY STEWART, TLS

    https://unherd.com/thepost/flashback-rory-stewart-really-doesnt-like-boris-johnson/?utm_content=buffercfb9e&&

  2. robert harrison says:

    What so called rep England probably had left johnson has incinerated to ashes with his actions for all the world to see brexit’s a disaster the Aussie trade deal is rumored to have broken down no trade deals with the usa now trump’s gone Scotland could [have] avoided all this if it just said yes to independence instead of believing england’s lies through their politicians media and lackeys in our parliament this is what voting no brought Scotland let’s throw this at the English rule side come indyref2.

    • Golfnut says:

      Also, Australia and NZ have withdrawn from the World Rugby championships to be in England, September I think, say that they had no intention of putting their own people at risk due to the covid situation in the UK.

      PS,
      If you thought the European Championships were bad, wait till this gets started.

  3. Jenni Hancock says:

    Thank you for this weeks’ blog! It must have taken such an effort to write it! I just can’t wait for the next election when, I hope, we can get this bunch of conniving, lying, morally bankrupt hypocrites out! The damage they have done to Britain!
    Keep going with your rehab, it’s a long hard road coming back from a stroke but you will get there! Good luck!

    • stewartb says:

      ‘I just can’t wait for the next election when, I hope, we can get this bunch of conniving, lying, morally bankrupt hypocrites out!”

      By a majority, voters in Scotland have been trying to ensure the UK never has a Tory government since the mid 1950s – with very limited success. Unless there is a rapid and momentus shift in public opinion away from the support the Tories have – even today – in England coupled with a rapid and momentus improvement in the ability of the UK Labour Party to oppose and to offer voters in England an alternative, reliance on a ‘next election’ to achieve your goal is IMHO a forlorn hope.

  4. Stellar, PK.
    I too am lying down in a darkened room. Heatwave?
    Later.

  5. bringiton says:

    He is just the latest in a long line of lying Tory leaders.
    Just when you think they have scraped the bottom of the barrel to find a leader,they
    mange to dig up something even worse.
    Judging by the low life presently surrounding Johnson,perhaps we should be hoping that he goes on for a bit longer.
    Hope the physio manages to get you a bit more mobile Paul.
    Must be very difficult.

  6. A6er says:

    Reblogged this on Tory Britain! .

  7. […] Wee Ginger Dug When calling out a liar’s lies is worse than lying I had intended to post a new blog piece yesterday (Thursday) but I had a very […]

  8. Bob Lamont says:

    “exceptionalis,” flaw on 2nd last para, but bang on the nail otherwise.

  9. Hamish100 says:

    Och, I remember 2 tories one is now a dame who stated that they would resign if Northern Ireland got an economic and social advantage over Scotland due to Brexit.

    Nope it’s gone can’t remember them- ok caught me out. I obfuscated. Where the shovel?

  10. Alex Clark says:

    This whole idea of being suspended from Westminster for calling a bare faced liar out on his lies is absolutely ridiculous and the only reason they carry on doing it.

    Lying to parliament should be an offence that is punishable by the speaker, lying to parliament should be like lying in court under oath and the liar should have to pay the price. This really should be a rare event that when it happens should be a big thing in the media and the guilty party should be shamed. They’re not of course, nobody cares a jot so there is nothing to stop them from lying again and again and again.

    Maybe in bygone days the Honourable and Right Honourable members of parliament were expected to live up to their titles in parliament and who knows if such a time existed then the act of lying to parliament would have been a pretty rare event and to accuse someone of lying to parliament may have been a reason for suspension if you failed to provide evidence and refused to withdraw the accusation.

    There is very little that is Honourable about bare faced liars like Johnson and Gove.

    • stewartb says:

      “If general standards of good behaviour among senior UK politicians can no longer be taken for granted, then neither can the sustenance of key constitutional principles.”

      Source: Andrew Blick and Peter Hennessy (2019) Good chaps no more? Safeguarding the constitution in stressful times. The Constitution Society.

      See: https://consoc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/FINAL-Blick-Hennessy-Good-Chaps-No-More.pdf

      Hard to imagine in the 21st Century we are relying on ‘good behaviour’ as an alternative to a written, modern constitution – but this is where we’re at in the UK. And we now know this Tory government seeks to weaken the rights of citizens to have recourse to judicial review!

      • Derek says:

        I wonder whether it’s worth the opposition parties organising and having someone call him/them a liar/liars every day – without retracting? It might drive the message home a bit harder.

        • iusedtobeenglish says:

          I’ve wondered this too.

          Or they could quote Richard Brinsley Sheridan:

          “Mr. Speaker. I said the honorable member was a liar it is true and I am sorry for it. The honorable member may place the punctuation where he pleases.”

  11. Alex Clark says:

    Here’s a 2 minute video of James O’Brien of LBC with his take on liar Johnson.

    https://www.lbc.co.uk/radio/presenters/james-obrien/james-obrien-significance-dawn-butler-boris-johnson/

  12. Scottish Skier says:

    “In the wake of recent events I am determined that this site will not become a home for bigots and conspiracy theorists”.

    The recent surge in concern trolls and bigoted / conspiracy theorist ‘independence supporters’ (ahem) is an excellent sign, confirming polling data which shows we appear to have crossed the event horizon, with Yes now a forgone conclusion, if not now, then by next year.

    Generational changes in identity are eating away at the UK at about 1.3% Yes baseline (ex DK) per year, with Britishness – and associated support for a British Scotland – largely confined to the post war consensus baby boomers. The apparent monthly rises and falls are just waves that ebb and flow on a steadily rising tide. Those waverers who create the waves jumped on board in 2014 so will likely do so again, securing a sold majority.

    Anyhoo, MI5 should be throwing everything they can at Yes social media if they are doing their jobs, but it’s all too little too late 10 years of data, 100 years of a declining empire, the rise of Yes parties, two devo refs and iref1 tells us.

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/10NXhBjO85J01nGzcnt9aqBNLOXcraYOA/view?usp=sharing

    Don’t let anyone tell you that ‘Indy support hasn’t changed in years!’. They either don’t know what they are talking about or are deliberately lying. But also remember that the SNP, Greens, Alba are not causes of the trend, but products of it. As Scotland becomes Scottish and not British, as typified by the devo generation, so it’s electorate opts for Yes parties, as is natural in a normal country. The generally good record of Yes parties only accelerates the pattern somewhat. If the current 2 main players lost popularity and votes, it would be to other yes parties, not to the union, which is lost to most of their voters. Baseline Yes are ‘Yes tomorrow, no matter what, no questions asked because we’re Scottish and Scotland should govern itself. End of’.

    And neither is Alba a ‘split’. Yes is merely getting too large to be covered by 2 parties (SNP + Greens), just as it became to big for one previously (the SNP). Folks will note that the combined SNP + Green list vote grew on a record turnout in May, meaning these lost no share to Alba net. Alba just seems to have found it’s own voters. This pattern will continue as the Yes movement – the majority of the electorate now – continues to expand and so needs more tents. And when a Yes vote comes, all parties will become Yes parties, supporting Scotland remaining an indy country.

    Of course some are desperately trying to split the Yes vote, but it is a last gasp move destined to fail just as the trolling onslaught and Wills bringing the Scotch peasants gifts of Irn Bru is too little too late

    • Scottish Skier says:

      Blog comment thingy keeps using my name automatically rather than my traditional Skier moniker, but nae bother, I’m not on the run or anything 🙂
      (Mods 🙂 )

  13. raineach says:

    He lies out of both sides of his mouth at the same time. He lies when he doesn’t have to. he lies when it’s against his interest to lie. Sometimes he lies just to keep his hand in. he only learnt Latin so he could lie bilingually

    • Bob Lamont says:

      “He lies out of both sides of his mouth at the same time” It takes years of practice to develop without swallowing the marbles…

  14. Dr Jim says:

    I imagine most of the time Boris Johnson doesn’t know what the truth or fact of anything is because he can’t be bothered to know so just makes it up as he goes not caring a damn about what he says

    He believes his birthright is to rule over those who are lesser than he, and the problem with that mentality is he believes that is most people

    Like most Tories he’s dangerous, but he’s also deranged which makes him uncontrollably dangerous

  15. stewartb says:

    So, will other opposition MPs now step up and follow Dawn Butler’s example?

    How about a rota of MPs to level the same charge – every day in the Chamber or at least at every PMQs – making explicit the evidence? If this is done by many MPs and done persistently- i.e. at scale – this will surely (?) cut through to the corporate media, the BBC and crucially, the voters.

    As the clip of James O’Brien’s comments given above notes – and his point is blindingly obvious – this HoC ‘convention’ has huge significance for a parliamentary democracy when faced with a government like Johnson’s.

    • Derek says:

      …and as I scroll down I find it’s already been suggested! (replied to you above).

  16. P Harvey says:

    Paul
    As I and many others have said you must concentrate on maximising your recovery
    Any posts you manage to write are a great bonus & you’ve lost none of your flair!
    An excellent take down of Bawris and the other CONservatives
    It’s indeed unbelievable that anyone should be disciplined for saying Bawris is a liar!🤥
    Keep well and continue your recovery!

  17. Capella says:

    Something’s gone wrong. Mike Russell AND Ruth Wishart are on Any Questions tonight on R4 at 8.00pm. It’s from Campbeltown.
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000y5sx

    • Alex Clark says:

      Just listened and it was painful, that new Tory MSP Russell Findlay was a real pain in my ear.

      • Capella says:

        Yes indeed. I noticed that the chair butted in to support the Tory too. As for Baroness Kennedy QC – she admits that Keir Starmer will not win an election any time soon,ever. But we should stick with the union because…er…
        I’m always surprised how deadly that programme is.

        • iusedtobeenglish says:

          I take some small comfort in the fact that many of the (let’s call them) politically unaware/indifferent they think they’re convincing are so politically unaware/indifferent they wouldn’t be interested in listening to it. Their audience will be predominantly unconvertible – either because they already believe, or because they definitely don’t.

          Even the beeb aren’t yet brass-necked enough to report it as a ‘news item’. Give ’em time though…

  18. dakk says:

    The calling out of liars is forbidden and anathema to Westminster simply because the british state is predicated on lies.

    Wouldn’t want too much truth getting out into even the 18th C press or hansard would they?

  19. James Mills says:

    That old joke from way back has never been more apt :

    ”How do you know when Boris Johnson is lying ? ( altogether now ) His lips move !”

  20. James Mills says:

    I think Abe Lincoln got it wrong :

    If you are Boris Johnson – you can fool all of the English people all of the time !

    • iusedtobeenglish says:

      Bit unfair to my ex-fellow countrymen that, Mr M.

      They’re not all fooled.

      Some say “All politicians lie”.
      Some are apathetic.
      Some say “Well our constituency’s Labour”
      Some think they’ll “get him out at the next election”
      Some sigh and say “Yes. But what can we do about it?”

      I have relatives…

  21. Capella says:

    The great renewables robbery needs to end. Sotland pays the highest grid connection charges in Europe. Stephen Flynn speech in HoC.

    • iusedtobeenglish says:

      I recently told someone who I got into conversation with this.

      Still a bit influenced by English “don’t talk politics” conditioning but he said “but we’re still better off in the union aren’t we?” And I couldn’t let it lie.

      So, I told him (amongst other things) that we have 23% of renewable in Europe and pay the highest grid connection charges. And that these are set by WM.”

      “I didn’t know that” he said, plainly shocked.

      So I referred him to Scotland the Brief.

      Things like this have got to be more widely publicised.

      How can we sponsor a billboard?

  22. Ross Anderson says:

    While Boris will be the last PM of Britain, Cameron was the last British PM.

    May was a mix, more English than British, and oversaw the transition from British nationalism (pro-EU in England) to English nationalism (leave supporting). While EVEL was definitely unfair on Scots MPs, it wasn’t intended to target them, but to try and prevent an English nationalist takeover. It was a British ‘sop to the [English] nationalists’ as was the case for Irish/Welsh/Scottish devo in 1997.

    It’s why Johnson is such a wrecking ball, he isn’t remotely British and so hasn’t the faintest understanding of the people in 3/4 UK nations. The last fully English PM we had was ‘We the English’ Thatcher, and she utterly trashed Britishness (by shutting down or selling it off) in Scotland while believing she was promoting it. Just like Johnson is doing. He’s now finishing what she began.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Because of the deliberate population growth suppression in Scotland and Wales England will always be the dominant power if our counties remain in any kind of Union, no one will ever remove the belief in England that they are not *the country* *the UK* *Great Britain* and England all rolled into one, the propaganda has been successful in that regard and it’s unshakable and irreversible, political total separation is the only route to equality of decision making for our countries
      England should have what it votes for, that’s democracy even though it’s bad democracy, the problem is Scotland and Wales can’t fix it because England don’t want it fixed, they like the false idea that somehow England is superior to all others because that’s what they’ve always been told and sold, and they bought it hook line and sinker

      Even though England has seen its Empire diminish massively by around 60 countries who have removed themselves from Empire rule the people of England don’t seem to have noticed their country’s ever increased unpopularity and still keep voting for the same thing over and over as though one day it’ll all come right and they really will be world beating powerhouses of global epic ginormous proportions, because that’s what the politicians they elect keep telling them so they vote for it again and again and again, and with the assistance of a bought and paid for media to keep promoting that message do we expect them to wake up anytime soon? well no we don’t

      If you ever wondered what was the greatest success or achievement of English governments it would be propaganda, they have outshone the world in lying to their own and other peoples around the globe and they’re brilliant at it, even when so many countries have unceremoniously dumped them they always managed to make it appear as a success story of granting them freedom to be less than they were before

      Scotland will be no different, eventually England will fool England into believing it’s what they wanted so be happy that they’re rid of us and the subsidies they sloshed over Scotland for hundreds of years, so now England will be even greater Britain UK England

      And England will believe it……..ad infinitum ad nauseam and all the other ads you can think of

      • bringiton says:

        England’s Tories know they have no argument in denying that the country/nation of Scotland has the right to elect a government of it’s choice under any democratic values.
        So…..Scotland isn’t a country/nation…there is no Union only Greater England…ein reich ein volk etc etc.
        That is how it will be until Scots,in particular,start to think of England and Scotland as being neighbours and not of Scotland as being a possession of England.
        We will probably never be friends after all the shenanigans we have suffered from England over the years but we can try to be reasonable neighbours.
        Not possible,of course,with the extremists currently in charge of England.

  23. Capella says:

    Ann’s links. Focus on money and how we fix it in independent Scotland. The warning of dealing with Westminster in NI.

    Tim Rideout. Many have asked about mortgages and other debts and how the introduction of the S£ will affect them.All loans will stay exactly as they are in Sterling until you instruct your bank to change them. There will be no automatic conversion into S£. Thread. https://mobile.twitter.com/RideoutTim/status/1418627321242718213

    Why is the Northern Ireland protocol still an issue? Actions have consequences Fintan O’Toole

    https://amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/jul/23/northern-ireland-protocol-boris-johnson-oven-ready-deal-sausage?__twitter_impression=true

    Chris Grey Brexit blog The Frost-Johnson approach has already failed

    https://chrisgreybrexitblog.blogspot.com/2021/07/the-frost-johnson-approach-has-already.html

  24. Capella says:

    THE RUNAWAY TRAIN Whistleblowers Accuse HS2 of ‘Concealing the Truth’ Over Controversial Project’s Costs. Two former senior members of staff claim that they were sacked after they sought to reveal the true property costs of the project
    https://bylinetimes.com/2021/07/22/the-runaway-train-whistleblowers-accuse-hs2-of-concealing-the-truth-over-controversial-projects-costs/

    MPs deserve higher pay because ‘it’s more difficult to be an MP than it is to be a nurse’, claims journalist

    https://nursingnotes.co.uk/news/politics/mps-deserve-higher-pay-because-its-more-difficult-to-be-an-mp-than-it-is-to-be-a-nurse/

    Short video on politicians lying to us. Is this right?
    http://www.progressivepulse.org/society/marcus-j-ball-private-prosecutor

  25. Capella says:

    New scheme to promote fair working hours. “The Scottish Living Hours Accreditation Scheme recognises that in addition to payment of the real Living Wage, the number and frequency of work hours are critical to tackling in-work poverty.”

    https://www.gov.scot/news/new-scheme-to-promote-fair-working-hours/

    More links over on Ann’s links page on Indyref2

    https://indyref2.space/forum/topic/links-saturday-24-july-2021/

    And keep up with Prof Robertson on Talking Up Scotland.
    BBC Scotland wins ‘Cringeprop21’ award as hospital infections fall to lowest in Europe!

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2021/07/24/bbc-scotland-wins-cringeprop21-award-as-hospital-infections-fall-to-lowest-in-europe/

  26. Statgeek says:

    When an elected politician can lie to the electorate, while the one who calls out the liar is castigated and punished, we have to assume the system is corrupt.

    When Parliamentary Privilege allows elected politicians to avoid defamation charges, but the media cry foul when one of them names one of the soldiers from Bloody Sunday (an almost 50 year old investigation by many British Governments), we have to assume the system is corrupt.

    When the system is designed to keep fearful governments safe from elections when the people want them, but allows confident governments to hold elections on a whim, the system is corrupt. Even the fixed term parliament only lasted all of 1 term (2010 to 2015). Then we had elections every 2 years until a Government got a large majority.

    Their reason to want to do away with it? That the government can be held to ransom by the non-government (i.e. a weak majority must actually work with others, compromise, reason, negotiate and be civil and fair). Not something Tories do. Not something British PMs do.

    The media own their fair share of this. Whether it’s the millionaire-funded tabloids, or the obsequious state broadcaster, fearful of an Etonian with a misplaced sense of grandeur. Just as Trump denounced Fox when the game crashed around his ears, Boris will denounce the press that will inevitably turn on him. However, it will be too late for some people, out of jobs, missed opportunities, or worse still, dead.

    All they needed to do at the start was call him a liar when he lied, and he probably wouldn’t have made it to Downing Street. Well I didn’t vote for him or give any media source money. My conscience is clear.

    • grizebard says:

      Ach, it’s just more proof that the “good chap” theory of government, in which no member of the HoC could possibly be a “bad egg” and thus merit bad-mannered reproof, is long past its sell-by-date. There were always a few scoundrels, but it seems they are now in the majority. From the liar-in-chief on down.

      They must think either we don’t notice, or in their supreme protected arrogance they simply don’t care.

      But we notice, and we care.

  27. JMD says:

    Iusedftobeenglish 10.29

    “How can we sponsor a billboard?”

    That is precisely the kind of question that needs to be asked a lot more on here and elsewhere., rather than just waffling on about Covid Stats and how dysfunctional the Westminster regime and the “union” is. We all already know all about that.

    The pandemic will be, to some extent or other, with us for a good while yet so using it as an excuse to do nothing just doesn’t cut it. What do billboards, mailshots and letterbox leafleting have to with the pandemic anyway? Nothing.

    If they’re not already doing so individual Yes groups across Scotland should be conducting their own mini campaigns throughout their areas, and of course co-ordinating as and when required. Get the message out there, not just by using lists of facts and figures but by using emotion. Outline in simple terms the consequences of staying in the uk.(fear) followed by outlining the opportunities and benefits, not the least of which would be psychological, of living in a normal country that manages its own affairs (positive emotion).

    • Bob Lamont says:

      What happened to the “using it as an excuse to do nothing just doesn’t cut it” I copied a few minutes before from the same post ?
      Mightily curious…

    • grizebard says:

      “The pandemic will be, to some extent or other, with us for a good while yet so using it as an excuse to do nothing just doesn’t cut it.” What if ordinary people think otherwise? Bit awkward for your argument then, no?

      I’m sure there’s no harm whatever in making salient points any way we can along the way, but your impatience to get a campaign going in a higher gear when many people are distracted and not ready to pay attention is a possibility that you (and people like you) just can’t seem to grasp.

  28. Capella says:

    Shameless piece of Unionist propaganda from David Leask in The Herald. The notion that Scotland could have become rich like Norway if we had managed our own oil is just a nationalist myth. We would have been like Biafra.
    Norway, you see, had decades of independence behind it. https://twitter.com/DerekBateman2/status/1418864825120268289?s=20

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Leask said frankly

      • Dr Jim says:

        Yeah it’s best England made sure Scotland had no opportunity to succeed because of the probable maybe possible could have been failure, so phew! aren’t we lucky England saved Scotland by stealing every drop of oil from us before we embarrassed ourselves, just as well Leasky reminded us we dodged a bullet there eh

        Maybe Leasky could have reprinted Scotland Sec of State Iain Lang’s letter to Margaret Thatcher while he was at it just to remind Scotland how much England stole then covered it up double quick before we found out how much Scotland was actually worth

        • ArtyHetty says:

          Yep Scotland has been scammed out of £trillions literally, it’s bloody tragic and it”s why drugs were ( and still are) being shipped in and terrible housing schemes were built by the unionists, keep the people down, poor and begging, no prospects unless you able to and can leave your own country.
          You know, looking at London HQ’d Labour rule in Scotland, before and after devolution, their record is not too positive is it, not in the slightest. The people of Scotland saw what they had missed out on, and how they’d been treated and scammed by the English government, but until the SNP were given a mandate to oversee matters within the constraints of the UK, it was a case of a mafia type regime when you think about it.

    • stewartb says:

      has this been forgotten by Leask? Norway’s petroleum investment fund, the ‘Government Pension Fund Global’: ‘The aim of the oil fund is to ensure responsible and long-term management of revenue from Norway’s oil and gas resources, so that this wealth benefits both current and future generations.’

      The fund’s market value one minute ago: 12,121,718,452,052 NOK (https://www.nbim.no )

      You can do the currency conversion but in January this year the Guardian published an article that stated that in late 2020 the Fund was valued at £923bn. The Norwegian state – and therefore Norway’s citizens – benefit from dividend payments from this investment fund. And of course it is there to meet any future emergency.

      Add to this direct monetary benefit, there is spillover specialist investment expertise that has accrued to Norway’s commercial sectors over the years – comparable to the spillover benefit of having a state owned oil company – plus the influence ‘global’ Norway can now have on corporates worldwide via its investment portfolio.

      Unless independent – unless we have agency – and soon, Scotland i.e. us and our descendants, are facing another huge lost opportunity to secure legacy benefits, this time from renewables.

      • Capella says:

        Poor Norway lacks the guidance of such savants as David Leask – that’s where they have gone wrong. No broad shoulders of Westminster, no BBC and billionaire newspaper owners to guide them. Sad.

    • grizebard says:

      Another miserable outing of the “abundant natural riches are a curse that we uniquely can’t handle so it’s a blessing really that London stole it and squandered it instead”. Bitter Together still on the same stuck record.

      His absurd premise in effect is that we’re in such a deep hole that we can never get out. Permanently in need to retain our exploiter, and for what? There isn’t a former British colony whose inhabitants were as psychologically impoverished, even though in material terms they were a whole lot poorer than we are.

      What kind of person can regurgitate this ludicrous self-abasement – even if they are paid to do it – and look themselves in the mirror each day?

    • ArtyHetty says:

      Ah yes. I had pals who travelled to Norway in 2014 for a holiday, who also voted no to their own country, Scotland, being independent. On their return they said, ‘if only we could be like Norway’ I kid you not, intelligent educated people, supposedly. They haven’t moved to Norway, far as I know.

  29. stewartb says:

    Someone earlier mention ‘billboards’. See this appeal from ‘Republic”: ‘Billboards to end the monarchy’!

    See: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/republic

    “Billboards up and down the country: As we approach the end of the Queen’s reign the country needs an honest, grown-up debate about the monarchy. We need to stop and ask ourselves: Can’t we just choose our next head of state?

    “Thanks to the fantastic response so far, Republic has now booked 12 billboards that will go up in Aberdeen, Paisley and Glasgow, Newcastle, Leeds, Liverpool, the Potteries, Birmingham and Portsmouth.”

    I give this for info and interest. I am hugely supportive of the aims of this organisation but it is not my priority: first things first. End the Union.

    It is interesting that Republic appears to have secured from commercial companies a willingness to display such politically charged messaging on billboards!

    • grizebard says:

      Murdoch, maybe? Another convenient distraction, whatever. Divide-and-conquer on the march, any way possible, a public service happily provided by your friendly non-local dark funder. Oh, and keep the billboards well away from more productive purposes forbye.

      • Alex Clark says:

        I see what you mean, take any controversial cause and stick an Independence or SNP ticket on it, then shove it in peoples faces so as to alienate potential converts to Yes and job done for the Unionist side.

  30. ArtyHetty says:

    Indeed, excellent article as usual Paul thank you.
    Regards PIP, do that definitely, but CAB are very busy in my experience at the moment. You are I hope aware of the various charities that exist to support people with stroke etc…they may well help with applying for PIP and/or have advice on that. Also when you are awarded PIP your partner can apply for carers allowance if not working F/T etc. Also look for any advocacy services in your area, or via the council social services etc…can all be very useful.

    https://www.chss.org.uk/us/

    Thers is a very good UK wide website with info and help and advice for funding, I should have said before. Good luck with applications, it can be stressful just thinking about that so any support is worth acessing.

    https://www.turn2us.org.uk/

    • Capella says:

      Well said ArtyHetty! Great to hear practical advice on specifics.

      • ArtyHetty says:

        🙂

        Indeed. I did some volunteer advocacy years ago. People are most often not aware of the help and support there is, though of course it would be nice if people didn’t need to rely on ‘charity’ for that. You know, when Labour were in charge at Westminster, I read that it was their policy, under Gordy Brown as treasurer, to deliberately keep info from people regarding their access to, and eligibility for Disability Living Allowance, now ‘PIP’. It was always at least ‘1/3 underclaimed’, and in fact far as I know was from a different purse to the actual DWP one. When my sons were wee, both shafted by Labour run council and Labour run schools back then, I had to give up any notion of work or career because as it turned out, too late, they both had autism and one with serious learning difficultiesw, (the schools and council avoided any sort of diagnosis like the plague because that would mean spending £’s on support, ie SEN a statutory requirement).

        I despise the Labour party, they ruined my career, they kept us in poverty, they blamed me and school labelled me a bad mother. The staff were in on it as well.
        Struggling now with grown up sons’ struggles, it could have been so much better, I cannot abide people not getting the help or advice they need.
        When you see homeless folk sitting there at the shops, they probably very often need help to access services and monetary support, they could have learning disabilities etc.

        London HQ’d Labour branch in Scotland left a terrible and damaging legacy, and it needs to be exposed, they have a lot to answer for, a heck of a lot.
        Sorry TMI.

        • Capella says:

          So sorry to hear this. I too had a great struggle to survive with a small child when I was younger and found there was no help available unless you educated yourself and demanded it. More recently, my disabled sister had the same problem and I had to pester social services until help was forthcoming. I’m sure you are right and they are trained to deny help to all but the most determined.

          It’s hard to keep up with the ever changing rules and regulations and if you are not personally engaged you will have little idea what to do.
          Better to be an MP with a secure income, a generous severance package, decide on your annual increase and allowances, and retire to a seat on the board. Better still, a seat in the House of Lords, all taxpayer funded.

        • Tatu3 says:

          Apologies to Paul for going off topic here.
          My daughter has Asperger, diagnosed age 5 at Yorkhill Hospital. We fought for and eventually were given a “statement” and help in school. Then my husband got moved to England for work. The Scottish statement was not accepted in England and we had to start from scratch all over again! By this time she was in secondary school. Her help of 15 hours was then divided up and shared with children who couldn’t get a statement!, so she’d only get a portion. I used to go into the school almost daily to complain about this and was on first name terms with the Principal. They just kept telling me the school was under funded and they needed all the help they could get. Hated that school.
          She is now a lovely, kind and caring adult, and a great mum to my grandson.

  31. Capella says:

    Links! Changing climate detected at Westminster. See poll results.

    David Allen Green. The ejection of a Member of Parliament for pointing out the lies of the Prime Minister is a practical example of the function-failure of the UK constitution

    https://davidallengreen.com/2021/07/the-ejection-of-an-member-of-parliament-for-pointing-out-the-lies-of-the-prime-minister-is-a-practical-example-of-the-function-failure-of-the-uk-constitution/

    Dawn Butler. I’ve submitted a parliament petition to change the standards and rules, so that the Govt and all those speaking in Parliament are duty bound to not mislead parliament or the public. No more lies! My petition will officially launch next week. I hope I can count on your support. https://mobile.twitter.com/DawnButlerBrent/status/1418593682933141517

    Couple of polls now showing a significant decline in Tory lead.https://mobile.twitter.com/IanDunt/status/1418876275775655944

  32. Capella says:

    CNN. Why would anyone trust Brexit Britain again?

    https://amp.cnn.com/cnn/2021/07/24/business/brexit-deal-northern-ireland-gbr-intl-cmd/index.html?fbclid=IwAR0sbzeOGHSkoV6NYXAMSfYrC8t2lnSTQem3aQ0Z_bCZwDFhdnKszNzHEIY&__twitter_impression=true

    The Protocol placed a trade border between the rest of the UK and Northern Ireland. That was agreed and sealed in October 2019. You now have the leading political correspondent of the BBC claiming that in the “tradition of international deals” something was punted when it was not. Thread. https://mobile.twitter.com/APHClarkson/status/1417914756908859400

    • grizebard says:

      In effect, Northern Ireland has already left the UK, it’s just that nobody has realised it yet.

      All thanks to BoZo The Clown Circus. Theresa May had an inkling, but in her successors’ arrant exceptionalism and haste they didn’t have a clue what they were achieving.

  33. Capella says:

    Important for Covid policy in Public Health England and JCVI.

    Christina Pagel. LONG THREAD: so I said yesterday I felt that the schools study in daily testing instead of isolation of pupils had been misreported. I don’t think study tells you very much except that neither isolation or testing are working very well in schools. Here is why…https://mobile.twitter.com/chrischirp/status/1418919282256318467

    And

    Deepti Gurdasani. Let’s looks at the highly flawed study that is being cited as showing no difference between LFD testing and isolation of contacts in schools. This is simply incorrect, and the premise of the trial as reported in the preprint out now is rather shocking from an ethics perspective. https://mobile.twitter.com/dgurdasani1/status/1418531436286693384

    Many more links over at
    https://indyref2.space/forum/topic/links-sunday-25-july-2021/

    • grizebard says:

      Those are stonkers. Science fights back! (But why anyone let themselves be sucked into an English Government-sponsored miasma in the first place beats me.)

      The continual concern for us is what effect this loucheness and ethical subordination may be having on the advice given to the SG, or indeed the influence on ordinary people via the state broadcaster.

  34. exile says:

    On sponsoring billboards – go to believeinscotland.org, which is also working with Yes groups to get its publicity materials into the hands of voters. All facts about Scotland publicised by believeinscotland.org are sourced. Look at the gallery for examples of billboards and diy publicity material.

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