It’s not Billy Kay’s Scots that’s embarrassing : It’s his Cringing critics

On Tuesday Billy Kay, the writer, broadcaster, and advocate for the Scots language, gave an address to the Scottish Parliament, The Time for Reflection address is not meant to be partisan or party political and Billy’s eloquent speech most certainly was not. Instead he used his address to highlight the importance of the Scots language to Scottish culture, literature, and identity. Scots is a language which, despite decades of official neglect and at times outright hostility and oppression still has over a million and a half speakers in Scotland and many more who understand the language even if they don’t actively use it themselves.

A huge part of Scottish cultural and literary output was produced in the medium of Scots. There is an enormous quantity of writing in Scots, there’s the poetry of Robert Burns and Hugh Macdiarmid, Ane Pleasant Satyre of the Thrie Estaitis, a play written by the makar Sir David Lyndsey in the early 1500s intended for performance at the court of King James V, the translation of the New Testament by Lorimer, legal texts and chronicles produced when Scotland was an independent state, and the modern poetry of Tom Leonard or Liz Lochhead. There are Scots language translations of the children’s story the Gruffalo, Asterix the Gaul, Harry Potter, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. In terms of its quality and range, not to mention its sheer quantity, writing in Scots vastly exceeds writing in any English dialect.

The quantity of Scots is also evident in its vocabulary, The Scottish National Dictionary and the Dictionary of the Older Scots Tongue are massive multi volume works, nothing comparable exists for any mere dialect of English, and nothing comparable could exist for any of them. The reason for this is that as a language in its own right, there are regional dialects within Scots, and there are also different registers of Scots. There is colloquial Scots, and there is also formal literary Scots. However there is no such thing as formal literary Cockney, Geordie, or Yorkshire, because the formal and literary variety corresponding to these dialects is standard English.

From a linguistic point of view Scots is highly divergent from English. Without getting too technical all non creole English dialects and standard English have a vowel system in which some vowels are inherently long and others are inherently short, however all Scots dialects have a radically different vowel system in which the length of a vowel (i.e. the duration of its pronunciation) is predictable from its phonetic context. Scots also displays important grammatical and syntactic differences from English. These grammatical and phonological differences end sharply along the Scottish-English political border, in marked contrast to local dialects within England, which merge imperceptibly into one another.

Scots must be distinguished from Scottish Standard English, the form of English most widespread in Scotland. Scottish Standard English arose in the 18th century and is basically southern English pronounced according to Scots phonology. As such it is a form of English which is heavily influenced by Scots and which has accommodated partially towards Scots. Since this is the form of English most spoken in Scotland it gives many in Scotland the false impression that Scots is more like English (non Scottish English) than it really is. This impression is compounded by the fact that all Scots speakers are bilingual in English and most Scots speakers use neither pure English nor pure Scots but rather speak a varying mixture of Scots and English depending on the formality of the social situation and who they are speaking with.

English and Scots are very closely related. However English speakers without any previous exposure to Scots typically find Scots extremely difficult to understand and have to learn it as a foreign language. Being closely related to another language and partially mutually intelligible with it does not rule out language status for a linguistic variety. Norwegian and Swedish are closely related and are partially mutually intelligible, as are Czech and Slovak, but they are accepted as being languages in their own right. Ukrainian is very closely related to Russian. Russian nationalists claim that Ukrainian is merely a dialect of Russian and use this to assert Russian political dominance over Ukraine.

The Scots language, like the Gaelic language, is part of the cultural heritage of everyone in Scotland, irrespective of their political opinions or their views on Scottish independence. Billy Kay’s speech to Holyrood was not political, and he would be the first to stress that the Scots language should not be a pawn in Scotland’s constitutional debate, but it is significant that those who took to social media to howl in protest about him making a speech in Scots to the Scottish Parliament overwhelmingly defined themselves as opponents of Scottish independence and were quick to express their distaste for the SNP.

In order to clarify things for the British nationalist frothers who attacked Billy Kay for having the temerity to use Scots in a formal setting, the recognition of the status of Scots as a language has nothing to do with the SNP. It was the British Government of Tony Blair which ratified the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages in 2001 and gave official recognition to the Scots language and also Gaelic, Welsh, Manx, and Cornish, as well as Irish and Ulster Scots in Northern Ireland. However it was because the British Government chose to give a higher level of recognition to Gaelic (and to Welsh) than it did to Scots that we have a Gaelic TV channel but not a Scots one, even though Scots has more speakers than Gaelic and Welsh combined.

As far as any measures to promote or foster the Scots or Gaelic languages are concerned, the Scottish Government is merely acting as the agent for the British Government in fulfilling Britain’s international treaty obligations in Scotland. You’d think Unionists would be happy that Holyrood was doing what Westminster expects of it, but not apparently when it comes to Scots or Gaelic.

One of the most common protest against Billy’s speech was that “no one speaks like that” and accusing him of using a “made up language.” However all standard and literary languages without exception are the artificial creations of linguists and writers who make conscious decisions to extend the use of existing words into new meanings , to create new terms from the internal resources of the language, or to use the language consistently and without the strong influence of a different prestige language. There is no other way that a literary language can come into being.  They don’t magically appear because the language fairy waves her sparkly linguistic wand.

In the case of Catalan in the 19th century this entailed writing the language using a regularised and more consistent version of the orthography used for Catalan when the Kingdom of Aragon was independent of Spain, and purging the new written Catalan of the Spanish vocabulary which was crowding out native Catalan words. Other European languages were standardised in very similar ways. In the case of Estonian this actually entailed the wholesale adoption of words from Finnish (the previous prestige language in Estonia being German) and even the outright invention of new words.

No one is proposing anything so radical for Scots. However any attempts to extend the range of Scots or to use it in formal settings are met with howls of protest from linguistically illiterate people who invariably deride the language and insist that it is not a proper language at all, while they do their utmost to prevent Scots from ever being used as a proper language. Not only do these people wear their linguistic ignorance as a badge of pride, they almost always identify themselves as opponents of Scottish independence and assert that any attempt to use Scots outside of a narrow range of informal settings is “politicising” the language. In fact what is politicising the language is to insist that Scots must not be permitted to make use of the same tools of linguistic enrichment, or to be used in the same range of settings, as every other language in Europe, for fear of strengthening the appetite for Scottish independence.

Such people often claim that using Scots in the way Billy Kay did in Holyrood is “embarrassing” but this tells us vastly more about the person making the assertion than it does about Billy Kay or the Scots language. Objectively no language is any more or less embarrassing than any other. Saying that Scots is embarrassing tells us that person has strongly internalised feelings of Scottish inferiority and inadequacy, feelings which go a long way to explaining their visceral opposition to independence. They are terrified that if Scotland does have languages and a culture of its own, languages which are no better or worse than any other language, just languages which are distinctively Scottish , then perhaps Scotland might be something more than just a tartan bedecked region of a monolingually English speaking “British nation.”

It never fails to amuse just how willing those who suffer from terminal cringe are to not only display their ignorance for all to see, but that they are convinced that their ignorance is a virtue and demand that the rest of us must share in their ignorance too. It’s not the Scots language which is embarrassing. It’s them.

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181 comments on “It’s not Billy Kay’s Scots that’s embarrassing : It’s his Cringing critics

  1. Hamish100 says:

    So true.

    I remember years ago a report of a solicitor trying to describe a metal plate with vertical spars normally found next to the edge of a pavement and roadway to remove excess surface water ……
    The Glesga Sheriff then interrupted and said in his polite west end accent… “Do you mean a stank?”
    Language is of the people or is it peepels?Scots has so many diverse aspects from the Doric and across all pairts.

  2. sandy.harvey@btinternet.com says:

    Brilliant post, I’m definitely saving this one.

    Sent via BT Email App

  3. That’s some piece of writing, Paul.
    Nobody can demand of us that we ‘haud wur wheesht.’
    We can only smile wryly when we hear Jack, Bowie, and all the Scots Landowner Lairds who have somehow lived among us,but speak in plummy RP Oxford BBC accents.

    Keeping the natives in the colony in check for the Empah.
    God save the queen of England.

  4. Spot on. I grew up in the eastern central highlands where Scots was and remains widely spoken (Aberdeenshire is right at the top for speakers).

    https://www.scotslanguage.com/news/3948/calendar/Oct_2013

    It is my first language and natural to me, albeit I was not given the opportunity to learn it formally. At least though, I had a primary school head teacher that didn’t punish speakers, but instead encouraged us to learn about the history of our country, including its languages.

    Saying that Scots is embarrassing tells us that person has strongly internalised feelings of Scottish inferiority and inadequacy

    Hence only people who are not Scottish but in fact are, without question, anti-Scottish would ever express such a view. Seriously, it’s appalling and is racist. However, anti-Scottish / Welsh / Irish / Cornish commentary like this is dismissed by the English/British media as ‘not racism, because, as Rory the Tory claims, ‘we are all British’. It is a neat, Putinesque, excuse.

  5. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Ok, so we’re talking about language(s), as regular readers know that I not only work professionally in my mother tongue and another two, but that I actively campaign for it.

    However, I thought I’d share this with you as a little bit of lighter commentary on language and also that you may feel inclined to throw a few of these hand grenades in the direcytion of e.g. Anas Sarwar and other Red/Blue/Yellow* Tories.

    *Delete as applicable.

    https://nation.cymru/culture/the-top-12-most-satisfying-welsh-language-insults-to-aim-at-your-worst-enemy-or-your-mates/

    The top 12 most satisfying Welsh language insults to aim at your worst enemy – or your mates

    • Capella says:

      I see you use cnaf as the Welsh equivalent of knave. I wonder if it’s the same as nyaff in Doric, meaning an irritating fool. Worse still is a wee nyaff.

  6. Arthur+Thomson says:

    Eradicating the cringe is the key to creating a vibrant, independent Scotland. The British, of course, are thoroughly aware of this – having systematically promoted it at every opportunity – and panic sets in when they see it disintegrating. Having lived outside Scotland for a long time I am delighted to observe, from afar, an apparently greater confidence in young, well educated Scots to use Scottish words. It is heart warming for me. The cringe is being undermined. For my part I use Scots words liberally in my everyday speech. Surprisingly, perhaps, those with whom I can be fussed to interact beyond inane pleasantries seem to have no difficulty understanding me. Those who claim not to understand are suitably deterred from interrupting my peace so it’s a win win.

  7. DonDon says:

    Billy Kay is aye the Honorary Preses o the Scots Language Society.

    O whilk Ah am a prood memmer.

    Oniebodie can jyne.

  8. DonDon says:

    This:
    “In terms of its quality and range, not to mention its sheer quantity, writing in Scots vastly exceeds writing in any English dialect.”

    And this:
    ” . . . there is no such thing as formal literary Cockney, Geordie, or Yorkshire, because the formal and literary variety corresponding to these dialects is standard English.”

    And this:
    ” . . .all standard and literary languages without exception are the artificial creations of linguists and writers . . .”

  9. Bernard Savage says:

    This article should be distributed as widely as possible. It is rare indeed to encounter a linguistically literate piece on the Scots Leid. As someone (variously attributed) once wryly observed “a language is a dialect with an army and a navy”.

  10. yesindyref2 says:

    I scout out the unionist foot soldiers and quickly overcome them with the force of my argument. Then I make my way through the serried ranks of sundry unionist politicians. They gasp and rush forward to pick up their YES badges. Then the big one, the current leader of the NO Nothing No more Neverland band. With my rapier-like wit and sheer logical appeals for a better Scotland I quickly overcome the protesting opposition. Another convert to YES please Nicola.

    Feeling a little peckish after these minor exercises, I collect my wife and we go through the local MacDonald’s drive thru for 2 big mac meals with chocloate milkshakes. I present my Clydesdale Bank / Virgin Money card for contactless payment. but am informed that:

    “Our biometric analysis algorithm has analysed your recent behaviour and concluded that you are not you. Transaction refused”.

    Thank heavens I carry cash.

  11. Derek says:

    Tintin, as well as Asterix, is translated into Scots. The Derk Island.

    • DonDon says:

      Derek: ” . . . translated into Scots.”

      Aye, an Tintin is owreset intil the Gaelic an aa. An T-Eilan Dubh.

  12. annie says:

    Braw, jist braw, thank you Paul. Billy Kay was on Gary Innes’ Radio Scotland request show recently (aye there are gems to be fund amid the sh*te skiting oot the bbc).

  13. dakk says:

    Very informative.

    Exposed my own ignorance of Scots and my own past failings with the likes of Sunset Song.

    Top notch.Or nop totch as we say in dakkanese.

  14. Tam the Bam says:

    O/T

    Just finished viewing Newscast (the prog. after Question Time).

    Adam Fleming (and the other guy…Chris somebody…apparently he’s just been promoted)
    were jointly interviewing Nadine Dorries.
    I was waiting for the inevitable “Why do you hate Ch4 News Nadine?” question to arise and it duly did.Remember…this is the Culture & Media Sec. who when interviewed by Krishnan Guru Murthy (Ch4 News) said repeatedly….”The Prime Minister doesnt lie.”… so when Adam Fleming put it to her she was selling-off Ch4 because Ch4 News gives her and her government a hard time…. she said …”Well they certainly didnt help their case when I heard a Ch4 person say ” I f*****g hate tories!”

    My God.

  15. yesindyref2 says:

    Jings, language. Well, one purpose is communication, but it also has identity, inclusion – and fun. I guess most native born Scots aren’t fully Scots speakers, the main language is English. I guess there are some who won’t speak Scots – and that IS their right. Some will try to speak English with “no accent”, and that is their right too.

    For many non-Scots speakers, Scots is still fun. And for “incomers” it is fun, but also a part of inclusion. I daresay one of the first words incomers would learn is “Jaiket” – and note carefully my spelling, which is perhaps not the most usual one. There are many.

    The “official” language though is English, and it seems to me any country that wants to have its own full identity, needs an official language for all its citizens. The UK has English, Ireland has English, the US, Canada etc have English. Some other countries like Wales do recognise another official language, but still have a “main” language. Not to have one would make any official gathering place that is not directly for the purpose of some language, the Tower of Babel, with many people unable to actually talk to or understand others.

    So you have an official language, a “formal” language, and you need to be very careful extending the use of any other language into formal settings. Having an address or speech in Holyrood specially for the purpose of portraying one of the “other” native languages is of course a good thing to do. So an address in Scots or a speech in Gaelic on some occasions, recognises the other languages of Scotland.

    But this: “However any attempts to extend the range of Scots or to use it in formal settings …” would need to be very carefully done, as it starts to exclude the majority who are not Scots speakers or who, like myself, find reading in full Scots takes twice as long.

    To have an all-encompassing identity, a country needs just one formal language for communication. Just as long as it’s not Latin as that is officially a dead language!

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      The UK has NO official language de jure. English is only official de facto.

      The only places where English has full official legal status in the UK is in the UK Houses of Parliament and the Senedd in Cardiff Bay.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Yes, that’s why I put “official” in quotes 🙂

        • Welsh_Siôn says:

          Glad that someone agrees with me. Not everybody does in this context.

          (I might have missed out on the fact that there are specific laws making English official de jure at Stormont – when it sits – and Holyrood. Apologies if I missed those. I only studied English law. (There was no extant ‘Welsh law’, or very little, per se, then.)

          • yesindyref2 says:

            It’d be interesting to know how many countries do have one single official language, rather than a few.

  16. malkymcblain says:

    Paul I posted a comment however it’s not showing and may have gone to moderation…jist tae gie ye a heids up.

    I haven’t commented for a while so maybe that’s why.
    [MODS – NO COMMENTS IN MODERATION MALKY]

  17. andyfromdunning says:

    “Thone Dougie Ross is a gomeral”
    “Gomeral?”
    “Fool”
    “Aye, richt enough”

  18. deelsdugs says:

    Fabulous Paul ☺️

  19. Críostóir says:

    I’m a big fan of Billy Kay’s work and I think his book, The Mither Tongue, is a must read. I’d go as far as saying that it should be required reading on teacher training courses such is the continued anti-Scots prejudice in the education sector.

    I welcome any work that will develop the Scots language, particularly the development of a standard orthography, the lack of which I feel critically undermines the language’s credibility.

    However, I do have some particular reservations about Scots. As the author points out, Scots is often spoken on a sliding scale with Scottish Standard English (SSE). What is often described as being Scots is quite often nothing more than SSE with a smattering of Scots vocabulary.

    Such is the proximity of Scots and SSE, the greatest risk to Scots’ long term survival is, in my opinion, hybridisation. This is a similar issue faced by the Belarussian language which has suffered from hybridisation with Russian.

    While I’m broadly supportive of measures to increase the use of Scots, I feel we need to be more forthright in establishing what Scots actually is. If we continue to allow SSE with a Scots veneer to pass for the latter in its own right then we risk doing more harm than good.

  20. ArtyHetty says:

    Excellent Paul. The naesayers are an embarrassment to themselves, having a pissy fit about the Scots language. As an ex Geordie I can understand some Scots, and love to hear it spoken. Time for Scotland to up their game to reassert Scottish languages and culture, the fact it really annoys the BritNats is a bonus in my opinion.

  21. jfngw says:

    There was a question about Scots in the census, I wasn’t sure how to answer it as I know a lot of Scots but as there was no actual education on it, its use was discouraged when I was at school, I would never know if it was actually Scots as it was mixed with English. There are lots of Scots words I have never come across but this is also true of my English knowledge. What level of understanding is required to claim to talk or understand Scots?

    I certainly could not write it with any confidence, mostly because I would be unsure how to spell it, an example was I used the word syver earlier in the thread but I had to look up the spelling, I’ve used the word hundreds of times in my life but had never seen it written.

    • What is the level required to talk or understand English, jfngw?
      Nicola Sturgeon is not a thaumaturgist. I’m sure all sides will agree on that, even the umbriferous Brit Nat criticasters in Holyrood, and the Dead Tree Scroll colporteurs peddling the Holy British Union.
      While much has been made of the Fat Owl’s leg agastopia this week, whic almost brought on entacular reflux in this scribe watching BBC Brexit the other morn, I was rendered pauciloquent at the report of the sex pervert Tory ogling porn in Da House, I am in danger of becoming a valetudinarian wreck, so sick to the stomach am I at the excesses of the Right Wing English Junta.

      At PMQ Johnson is reduced to English Tourist abroad lamprophony, booming bombast and Eton bun fight strength gesticulating spasmodically cheered on by the baying mob at his back.
      It is almost zoanthropic. He believes that he is actually a bull, John Bull.

      Thank the chief most of us spikka da Inglis…

    • annie says:

      jfngw, thats a really interesting and useful comment. I hope you dont mind if I dissect it.

      If you substituted “English” for “Scots” in the census question would you have had the same quandary? Why are you doubting yourself about your knowledge of Scots? You use and understand Scots words and phrases so the answer to the census question is Yes!

      Was the reason for your hesitation actually down to not being accustomed to being asked about Scots, not because you dont understand it?

      For anyone yet to return their census, if you’re following this discussion you can say Yes with full confidence to the Scots language question! Its the most important question there imo!

      • annie says:

        Also jfngw, where is the anger and outrage from the Scottish people who were ‘discouraged’ from using, and barred from being educated in their ain language, told they must use the language of the posh section of the country next door if they were to ‘get on’ in life?

        What are the psychological effects of that crushing of their own truth on the individual, and on the national psyche?

        Hesitation about answering a question about yer ain language is a symptom. We need to pay close attention to signs and symptoms if we are to cure the ingrained self-duping about reclaiming full nationhood.

  22. stewartb says:

    I trust this is not too soon to go O/T. I think the following comparison is worth making although I guess for many here it will be unsurprising.

    The BBC News website’s Scotland Business section today has this headline: ‘Chivas Brothers to invest £88m in two distilleries’ – and yes, the welcome investment is in Scotland.

    There is no overt political spin – there is a focus on having a carbon-neutral process – until the end of the article where we get this:

    ‘International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: “It’s great to see Chivas Brothers adopt new ground-breaking energy-efficient technology, helping deliver the government’s Net Zero strategy, and maximising export opportunities through green UK innovation.”

    This just helps to frame the announcement of ‘good news’ with some kind of Westminster government relevance.

    OK, £88 million is a big number but ….!

    It’s two days now since Crown Estate Scotland announced that the companies involved in the 17 Scotwind offshore projects have committed to spend £25 billion within the supply chain in Scotland. Yes £25 billion – that’s a ‘wee’ bit more than £88 million! In fact it’s a very big number for anywhere at anytime!

    No sign of this on the BBC News website. BBC Scotland’s Business and Economy Editor, Mr Fraser still has his piece on a small business (a cafe/coffee roaster) owner’s energy bills as his contribution to the website for a second day.

    Anyone spot coverage of the £25 billion Scotwind news elsewhere in BBC Scotland output yet?

  23. Capella says:

    UK slides further into fascism.

    Democracy fears following ‘authoritarian’ grab of Electoral Commission

    Kyle Taylor, director of campaign group Fair Vote UK, said the UK Government had essentially “voted to officially end the independence of the Electoral Commission” and that the new powers mean ministers “can effectively rig election rules in their favour”.

    READ MORE: ‘Unfeasible’ and ‘cruel’ Borders Bill set to become law – what happens next

    “This is how countries slide into authoritarianism,” he said. “First you take control of the institutions, then you rig them in your favour and ban noisy protest so people can’t fight back.

    “It’s a dark day for democracy.”

    https://archive.ph/qIswi

  24. Capella says:

    How long will we tolerate this insult to democracy and even common humanity?

    Five awful Tory laws MPs hope you’ll forget now the term’s over

    THIS year alone, it became illegal to protest noisily in the UK, Boris Johnson cemented the Government’s authority over the supposedly independent body for regulating elections and plans to send refugees to Rwanda were finalised.

    Despite being held up by the coronavirus pandemic – and partying – for much of this session, the Prime Minister has been able to reshape British society in substantial ways this session.

    Parliament has now been prorogued, meaning the session which began on May 11, 2021 has now ended.

    While the Government will now be looking forward to the Bills it hopes to introduce in the Queen’s Speech on May 10, we’re taking a look at what the Government has done since this time last year.

    https://archive.ph/ZHYyN

  25. Legerwood says:

    It was wholly appropriate for Mr Kay to address the Scottish Parliament in Scots. From the 1420s in the reign of James until 1707 all Acts of the Scots Parliament were written in Scots which was spoken by everyone commoner and noble from the King down.

    This from the Royal Mines Act of 1424
    “”.Item gif ony myne of golde or siluer be fundyn in ony lordis landis of the realme and it may be prowyt that thre halfpennys of siluer may be fynit owt of the punde of leide The lordis of parliament consentis that sik myne be the kingis as is vsuale in vthir realmys””

    Some of the Acts from the old Scots Parliament are still on the statute books.

    Therefore the Scots language is woven into our constitutional and legal history going back centuries.

    Many years ago, at least 45 yrs, I attended a production of the Thrie Estaites at the Edinburgh Festival. Duncan Macrae was one of the lead actors so gives you some idea of the date of the production. Thoroughly enjoyed it and was able to follow most of the dialogue. Quite a few of the audience were not English, or Scots, speakers and they seemed to be enjoying it too.

  26. Dr Jim says:

    Broadcasting is why there’s a problem with Scots languages accents dialects, call them what you will, Scotland has no proper broadcasting so no one hears how we speak so no one can tune their ears to it, except when the odd comedy show escapes into the mainstream like Rab C Nesbit where the people of the other lands of the UK might generally laugh at the antics more than understanding much of the dialect, much as what happened when Billy Connolly first broke the international airwaves of the south

    In Scotland we understand all the regional accents of England Wales and the whole of Ireland America and anywhere else that speaks English in one form or another because all these have been broadcast into our homes forever whether we like it or not so we tuned our ears in and we understand it all

    My eldest daughter when questioned by English folk as to why she spoke so quickly because they couldn’t understand her would always answer “listen faster”, * Derry girls* is the perfect example of not slowing their accent down for others hence less popular in England than Scotland
    I speak Spanish, if you want to talk fast listen to those folks then listen to the folks who complain about them either not speaking English or talking too fast
    All over the world people speak different languages, I find mostly that it’s not Scots who have the problem with this, we use bits of paper, we wave our arms around, we point to stuff and we learn, I never shouted at a foreigner in my life because they communicated in another tongue, I expect them to because they’re not from where I’m from

    The political hatred mob will always find something wrong in any attempt to showcase anything Scottish, this latest is just another iteration of their own insecurity

    • Bob Lamont says:

      “Broadcasting is why there’s a problem with Scots” would normally be sufficient for HMS James Cook, but your extended point is well merited – English folks can understand almost every corner of England and Wales because they have been exposed to it via radio and TV, yet to 10% of the UK’s populace they are essentially unexposed, not through disinterest but a deliberate policy of neutering the Scottish perspective beyond the White Heather Club type schtick.
      I vividly recall Andy Stewart’s shaggy dog tales in the Doric on black and white TV, no subtitles, so what changed since the 1960s which essentially cast Scotland out of the broadcasting mix even in Scotland itself ?

      From Rab C Nesbit needing broadcast with subtitles in the late 1980s, to Sir Paul Beresford’s inability to understand David Linden in Westminster in the 2020s, it is hard not difficult to pinpoint why so few in England understand Scots mentality let alone what they communicate when your sole medium is Nick Robinson’s “He said nothing..”
      We saw it blatantly with Sarah Smith, her successor “We’ve seen the emails FM” James Cook has no intention of allowing the public to dictate what the public broadcaster produces.

      So absolutely yes, “Broadcasting is why there’s a problem with Scots”, but their days are numbered…

    • JB says:

      re Derry Girls…

      I’ve never watched it before, but since it is currently on the C4 streaming service, I just watched the first 2 episodes of series 1. No real trouble keeping up.

      I did do a double take in episode 2 when I heard ‘Police Station’ as ‘Playstation’, until context supplied the answer. Rewinding to hear it a second time, it came across as ‘Police Station’.

      So the speed isn’t really an issue. (They do offer a subtitled version 🙂

      I’d need to watch them again, but from what I recall, I had more trouble with Rab C Nesbitt, but I suspect that was mainly due to the Glasgow accent rather than Scots per-se.

  27. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Yes the cringe is indeed reaching epic proportions from those who state in their Twitter bio’s that they are ‘proud Scots’ BUT ones who want us all to communicate in the Queen’s English ( no contradiction there naturally)….their ‘pride’ in being Scottish does not extend to the Scots language in Scotland……as the British (wannabee English) part of their Twitter bio is always THE DOMINANT part in their political and constitutional allegiances hence their preferred form of communication is plain old English ,not that in reality you will hear many of them speak or write in that format , should you meet them in the street, or hear them in the pub or read what they write on twitter, though they are fine with Cockney slang being used by their ‘betters’ darn sarf (Lol) but they are adamant that they do not want Gaelic to be recognised or used in Scotland…apparently that detracts from the British (English) part of their treasured (fake) identity.

    Meanwhile darn sarf we find that in the Premier league of Fraud, corruption, incompetence, lies , misogyny, sexual deviants and general all round badness aka the Houses of parliament at WM the Tory party seems to have topped the league…..again…….many there who prefer to use the Queens English as a language, or forms of, while committing these acts……the proud Scots BUT must be bursting with pride…or rather the British (wannabee English) part of their identity……Yeesh….

    Michelle Mone….if you want IT go out and get IT kinda gal……well she should have been careful of getting what she wanted as looks as if she has wanted too much…..and now has to face the consequences of her greed…allegedly…my breath is bated…..her jewellery line on a certain shopping channel has taken a nose dive and looks as if will soon be no more….that’s a shame…..perhaps too many POTS and she failed to keep a HANDLE on them……( don’t forget Gove and THE emails in this particular scandal ….no way should HE be missed out on THIS scandal and corruption involving Lady Mone) , who is a Tory colleague of the Baroness Davidson in the HOL’s, yon Michelle Mone who we all recall left Scotland post Indy Ref 1 because Scotland voted NO….forgetting she said she would only leave if we voted YES…..lying seems to be in the Tory DNA does it not……if their lips move…they’re lying.

    UND

    Tory MP (unnamed as per) watching porn in HOC…as you do at work…..just another scandal involving a Tory politician…….seems so frequent that for them it has become the new normal !

    UND

    Not forgetting Tory MP who was found guilty of molesting a boy and who was on the ….PANEL ……advising on ………..GROOMING GANGS……OMG

    UND

    Who can forget the scandals involving Michael Fallon, Stephen Crabb, Mark Garnier, Damien Green, Charlie Elphicke, Matt Hancock, Dominic Cummings, Boris Johnson (various),Priti Patel (forced to resign while in Theresa May’s government) and there is so many more I fail to mention…as basically it’s just TOO hard to keep up with them…..hope someone else has kept a tally.

    UND not forgetting….

    The Windrush scandal now we also have the Rwanda scandal , PPS VIP fast track scandal and basically looking at EVERYTHING going down via the Tory party and the UK government you just know if but ONE of these were attributed as being linked with the SNP or Scottish government they would be hung, drawn and quartered in the media and by Unionist politicians……….but seems as if SOME of the voters in Scotland and the Unionist media who revere this Tory party and the Union well they choose to turn the other way, bury their heads in the sand and wave a flag while singing Rule Britannia……the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations for them will be a welcome respite (distraction).

    Now via WM and Tory UK government…..England is under siege………

    Electoral commission changes i.e. lost its independence ……Police Bill peaceful protest is now criminalised…..Tories ‘bending the rules’ after missing deadline for publishing Lebedev advice…You can only vote if you produce voter ID…..the NHS Bill to accelerate NHS privatisation will become law………….I just KNOW I have missed so much on this list…oh wait I also remember the delay on the Russia Report by the Tories…..but it’s just all so ENDLESS….their ruthless corruption extends to infinity and beyond…..wonder when the Covid inquiry on UK government performance will be done
    …..another bated breath waiting on that being started and completed and then published WITH redactions in text perhaps ??? ( perhaps they, Tories, will also seek to mark their own homework on this too)

    You know there is SO MUCH crap going on with the Tories that the BBC in Scotland are having to go into overdrive to inflict as much political damage to the…………SNP……..cause that is the formula they apply…..when the going gets tough for a Unionist political party then the tough (BBC) get going on the SNP aka the Scottish government…….they might self combust with the effort…if only.

    BUT speaking a Scots language is THE BIG STORY HERE by BritNats…….of and Ferries (though don’t mention Chris Grayling’s millions spent on his phantom ferries) and the Census ( basically sure much of it involves Uber BritNats refusing to complete as ….reasons….we all know what MAIN reason is though ).

    I guess as a BritNat you need to rely on pettiness and tittle tattle against the actual REAL all round badness being committed by the political party and political system UND the Union that you pledge your allegiance to…….pity then that it is all going T**’s up is it not……frankly I just cannot keep up at the mess and dirt going on darn sarf via Unionist political politicians ….meanwhile Lib Dem Tory John Ferry apparently said on BBC Debate night that he thinks that “Scotland escaping Westminster to decide its own future would be a defeat for liberal democracy”…..oh my God what planet has he be living on……Planet Straws….. whose culture grasps (at straws)…trust a non liberal and non democrat to reach out to Proud Scots BUT who are also mainly uber British (wannabee English) peeps AND also those gullible uninformed peeps who sleepwalk among us…..he knows that WE on here and others like us can see that statement for what it is….balderdash Unionist gobbledygook ……John writes for the Tory Spectator BTW in case you need to see where HE is coming from……a unique Tory perspective hiding behind Liberal Democrat party colours……Yuk.

    Anyway apart from all of the above tis a nice day today…..nice that is on planet ‘Got Me Head Screwed On The Right Way’ ….Ha Ha.

    I need a rest now……it’s so draining highlighting all of the constant corruption and general badness linked to the REAL nasty party…..but not considered so in BBC La La Land.

    • NMRN, Love your stream of, sorry, ‘scream’ of consciousness outpourings.
      This week at FMQ, I hear that Sarwar the Millionaire Cash and Crry ‘socilaist’ actually said that the FM personally released elderly patients to care homes and killed them.

      This: from the Courier, 4/3/2020, when we were all looking on in horror as Italy’s HS was overwhelmed and it was clear that the world was facing a disaster of biblical proportions:

      “Labour health spokeswoman Monica Lennon said: “Time and time again the SNP has promised to end delayed discharge and yet the numbers of patients stuck in hospital is continuing to increase.

      “Delayed discharge is very distressing for patients and their families and is putting the NHS under serious pressure.

      “It is deeply disappointing that the SNP has failed to provide social care with the funding it needs to tackle delayed discharge at this year’s budget.

      “Scottish Labour would invest in a Scottish Care Service to provide the joined-up service we need to end delayed discharge.”

      Alex Cole-Hamilton.
      Liberal Democrat health spokesman Alex Cole-Hamilton said there was “now a record number of people stuck in hospital because of avoidable health and social care delays”.

      He added: “No-one wants to be stuck in hospital when they are well enough to return home or be cared for in the community.

      “People can be stranded there for months after medical staff have declared them well enough to leave.

      “We are seeing this bottleneck because too often community care just doesn’t exist, causing hospitals to become congested right up to critical care units.

      “The SNP promised to eradicate this problem years ago but now we see it is actually worse than ever.”

      So it was the Brits who were pressing to prematurely discharge patients as the Virus spread?

      They knew that the world was in the grip of a terrible dilemma, yet there they were, on their pins, Bad SNP-ing and their lies and dangerous goading was faithfully reported in the Thomson Empire Rag.
      Let the bodies pile high, feck Scotland and its people.

      The Brit Branch Offices, and the Dead Tree Scrolls Hack Pack and the broadcasters have done everything possible to undermine Scotland’s Government and our valiant Health Service, and support teams’ efforts in beating the virus. Yet that Kid-On ‘Socialist’ Cash and Carry King accuses our FM of killing pensioners?
      Remember the vicious rabid hacks grilling the FM every day during the Daily Updates?
      They are disgusting lying enemies of Scotland and its people.

      Can anybody seriously imagine Dross Sarwar or the Tailor’s Dummy as FM during the past 2 years?
      Of course not.
      They are dull little functionaries in place to scream out a load of bitter lies and threats, backed by a terrifying Media who lie and threaten the people of Scotland for thei English Paymasters.
      Treators…they have a day of reckoning coming very soon now.
      Deep breath…I’m a better person for that.

  28. William McMullen says:

    I listened to this when I trawled through and found coverage of the Scottish Parliament. Those who protest quite apart from being Unionist in the main have a key failure and that is that they do not listen. I’m pleased to say that I understood the vast majority of what he was saying and one or two extra bits courtesy of Outlander. I would willingly support greater use of this language, initially alongside English and who knows how it might develop from there. Living in mainland Europe I was used to having English as one of the languages on packaging or medicines but no more. Since Brexit it’s as if it disappeared overnight. It’s no longer the International language it once was so why wouldn’t we have increased use of Scots. ________________________________

  29. Alan Taylor says:

    Only a Dundonian will truly understand the sentence, “Ken Ken? Well eh Ken ken, an Ken kens’ eh ken Ken. Ken?

    • I recall many years ago now, while doing some work in Stranraer, a young local colleague describing an escapade on a Spanish holiday in that wonderful mellifluous Galloway drawl of his.

      He had ‘chatted up’ ( o tempora, o mores) two lasses from Liverpool at the beach bar, and after an hour or so of great craic, during which he was drawn to one of the girls in particular, he arranged to meet her that evening at the local Hang Out A-Go-Go.

      Shaved and showered he arrived at the agreed time; and to his slight disappointment both girls were already there, with puzzled looks on their faces.

      ‘Where’s your friend?’ they enquired.
      ”Sorry’, he stammered. ‘What friend?’

      ‘Your friend Ken, the one you were telling us all about this afternoon.’

      The penny dropped.

      In Stranraer, ‘ken’ is used the same way as Glaswegians use’, you know’, like a punctuation mark, interspersed throughout conversations, as a mental pause, a verbal comma, or whatever.
      So that afternoon, all his best anecdotes, jokes, ‘chat-up lines’ (I know, I know) were peppered with ‘ken’, and ‘ye ken’ breaks.

      The girls saw the funny side of it; they admitted that much of the Stranraer Casanova’s craic was lost to them, that they had laughed in all the right places, and were looking forward to meeting ‘Ken’, ye ken?

      So although you make the ‘ken’ case for Dundee, AT, it is commonly used elsewhere in this Great Little Country of ours, I submit, ken?

      Ich kennen, in German?

      We are truly European.

    • Tam the Bam says:

      ” Seez twa pehs….a plen yin..an a mince an’ inyin’ yin anaw.”

    • A Dundonian with the surname Dick would never call their daughter Emma.

    • Oh, and for the French speakers, my wife finds it highly amusing that I knew a guy at school called Johnny Marr.*

      —-
      *https://translate.google.co.uk/?sl=en&tl=fr&text=I%27m%20fed%20up&op=translate

    • Hamish100 says:

      Whit?

  30. stewartb says:

    Further to Capella’s post today @ 11:38 am on the Tory’s Elections Bill which has now been passed by the House of Lords and looks set to reach the statute book without further amendment.

    One of several areas of concern is that the Bill proposes giving the Westminster government greater control over the Electoral Commission which at present is formally independent. The terms of the Bill include the relevant secretary of state (currently Michael Gove) being able to issue a “statement of purpose” which will determine the Electoral Commission’s priorities.

    For context, recall the involvement of the Electoral Commission in Scottish politics preparatory to the 2014 IndyRef:

    Source: https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/sites/default/files/pdf_file/Referendum-on-independence-for-Scotland-our-advice-on-referendum-question.pdf

    ‘1.1 On 8 November 2012, Nicola Sturgeon MSP, Deputy First Minister, asked the Electoral Commission TO PROVIDE ADVICE AND ASSISTANCE to the Scottish Government by considering the wording and intelligibility of the proposed question for the referendum on independence for Scotland.’ (my emphasis)

    In reporting, the Commission stated:

    ‘1.4 The Electoral Commission is AN INDEPENDENT BODY which reports directly to the UK Parliament. We regulate party and election finance and set standards for well-run elections and referendums. WE PUT VOTERS FIRST BY working to support a healthy democracy, where elections and referendums are based on OUR PRINCIPLES OF TRUST, PARTICIPATION, AND NO UNDUE INFLUENCE.’

    And later in the same report:

    ‘1.6 On 15 October 2012, the UK Government and the Scottish Government reached an Agreement to work together to ensure that a referendum on independence for Scotland could take place. PART OF THEIR AGREEMENT WAS THAT THE ELECTORAL COMMISSION SHOULD HAVE RESPONSIBILITY FOR:
    • Advising on the referendum question
    • Registering campaigners who want to spend significant amounts in the referendum
    • Where appropriate, appointing lead campaign organisations for each outcome
    • Promoting public awareness of the referendum
    • Reporting on the referendum process.’

    Forward to 21 February 2022 and the text of a formal letter from the same Electoral Commission to the UK Government. In this it expresses serious concerns about the terms of the Elections Bill. The Commission states:

    ‘It is our firm and shared view that the INTRODUCTION OF A STRATEGY AND POLICY STATEMENT – ENABLING THE GOVERNMENT TO GUIDE THE WORK OF THE COMMISSION – IS INCONSISTENT WITH THE ROLE THAT AN INDEPENDENT ELECTORAL COMMISSION PLAYS IN A HEALTHY DEMOCRACY. This independence is fundamental to maintaining confidence and legitimacy in our electoral system.’

    It goes on: ‘If made law, THESE PROVISIONS WILL ENABLE A GOVERNMENT IN THE FUTURE TO INFLUENCE THE COMMISSION’S OPERATIONAL FUNCTIONS AND DECISION-MAKING. This includes its oversight and enforcement of the political finance regime, but also the advice and guidance it provides to electoral administrators, parties and campaigners, and its work on voter registration.’

    And note especially this next statement of ‘concern’ from the Commission:

    ‘The Statement would PLACE A DUTY ON THE COMMISSION TO HAVE REGARD TO THE GOVERNMENT’S STRATEGIC AND POLICY PRIORITIES AND TO HELP THE GOVERNMENT TO MEET THOSE PRIORITIES. The Statement would also PLACE A DUTY ON THE COMMISSION TO HAVE REGARD TO GUIDANCE ISSUED BY THE GOVERNMENT RELATING TO ANY OF ITS FUNCTIONS.’

    ‘It would thereby provide A MECHANISM, DRIVEN BY THE THEN GOVERNING PARTY, ENABLING THAT PARTY’S MINISTERS TO SHAPE HOW ELECTORAL LAW IS APPLIED TO THEM AND THEIR POLITICAL COMPETITORS. While the stated position of the current government is that it would not intend to use these powers to impact on the Commission’s independent oversight and regulation of the electoral system, NO SUCH ASSURANCES CAN BE GIVEN ABOUT HOW THE BROAD SCOPE OF THESE POWERS WOULD BE USED OVER TIME.’

    The Commission makes clear the exceptional nature of what is to be enacted: ‘The (Strategy and Policy) Statement has NO PRECEDENT IN THE ACCOUNTABILITY ARRANGEMENTS OF ELECTORAL COMMISSIONS IN OTHER COMPARABLE DEMOCRACIES, such as Canada, Australia or New Zealand.’

    The full letter can be read here: https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/who-we-are-and-what-we-do/our-views-and-research/key-correspondence/letter-commissioners-strategy-and-policy-statement-measures-elections-bill

    Now as I understand it (but I’m not a legal expert), under the terms of the Bill the Electoral Commission will retain a direct relationship with the Scottish Parliament over Holyrood and local government elections here. Of course, in future this will be a ‘relationship’ with an Electoral Commission now directly influenced by Westminster government agendas. My specific concern is how the passage of this new legislation will influence the role the Electoral Commission may play in IndyRef2.

    Recall that the Commission’s letter states: ‘The Statement would PLACE A DUTY ON THE COMMISSION TO HAVE REGARD TO THE GOVERNMENT’S STRATEGIC AND POLICY PRIORITIES AND TO HELP THE GOVERNMENT TO MEET THOSE PRIORITIES ..’. Well we know what these ‘priorities’ will be in the context of IndyRef2!

    Moreover, we know that in the lead-up to the 2014 referendum the UK Civil Service abandoned political neutrality and worked on behalf of the ’NO’ campaign. Never forget this: ‘HM Treasury team wins special Civil Service Award – The Treasury’s Scotland Analysis Programme Team won the Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service Award in this year’s Civil Service Awards.

    Source: https://www.civilserviceworld.com/professions/article/hm-treasury-team-wins-special-civil-service-award

    Mario Pisani, one of the award winners, is quoted in the article: “In the Treasury, everyone hates you. We don’t get thanks for anything. This is one occasion where we’ve worked with the rest of Whitehall. “We all had something in common, WE’RE TRYING TO SAVE THE UNION HERE, and it came so close. We just kept it by the skin of our teeth. I actually cried when the result came in. After 10 years in the civil service, my proudest moment is tonight and receiving this award.”

    He adds: “As civil servants you don’t get involved in politics. For the first time in my life, SUDDENLY WE’RE PART OF A POLITICAL CAMPAIGN. We were doing everything from the analysis, to the advertising, to the communications. I just felt a massive sense of being part of the operation. This being recognised [at the Civil Service Awards], makes me feel just incredibly proud.”

    Paul Doyle, another award winner, explains: “This award is not just for the Treasury, it’s for all THE HARD WORK THAT WAS DONE BY ALL GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS ON THE SCOTLAND AGENDA. The reality was in all my experience of the civil service, I HAVE NEVER SEEN THE CIVIL SERVICE PULL TOGETHER IN THE WAY THEY DID BEHIND SUPPORTING THE UK GOVERNMENT IN MAINTAINING THE UNITED KINGDOM. IT WAS A VERY SPECIAL EVENT FOR ALL OF US.”

    If Westminster can corral the UK Civil Service in pursuit of its policy goals in this way, once it has acquired unprecedented influence over the Electoral Commission how much more will the deck be stacked against the legitimate, democratic aspirations of many in Scotland? And stacked in ways that many voters in Scotland will simply be unaware! (And I haven’t even mentioned the enabling role of the corporate media and the BBC in all this!)

    • Lovely collation, stewartb.

      ” It is enough that people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything’.
      Stalin, of course.

      A Far Right fascist dictatorship which has an 80 seat majority but only 43% of the votes, is pushing England towards totalitarianism.

      WE shall be free by hook or by crook.

    • Capella says:

      Excellent analysis. It’s difficult to see what else, other than the independence referendum, the duty to support the UK government in its priorities could refer to. Democracy was weak before this, it’s on life support now.

  31. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    NEIL PARISH named as the Tory MP watching porn…..not sure which em ‘PARISH’ he is an MP for …..but he better be prepared to NEIL(KNEEL) down and ask for their, parishioners (constituents) forgiveness……did yea KEN yon Neil Parish watches porn in the HOC…no…well yea KEN noo.

    Petty I know…… but do they not deserve it…….in ANY language…

    BTW BBC Reporting Scotland’s BIG story is apparently on the Natalie McGarry trial but not a peep about Michelle Mone…..whose life seems to have gone T**s up ( pun intended)…….well we all KEN what their, media, priorities are………media adopt Tit for Tat style of reporting on politics (especially NOW given mucho Tory scandals so seek #SNPBAD stories)…..

    Though in the Michelle Mone scandal they are choosing to ignore the T*T and chasing what they classify as the TAT (but only if their version of Tat can be linked in any way, no matter how tenuous, to the SNP- past or present)…………..

    I REST my case ……Gove needs to be questioned on the EMAILS too …..as in the ones between him and Michelle Mone on this PPE scandal………ken what I mean.

    • From his wiki page,

      “Parish opposes, and voted against the implementation of same-sex marriage, stating that he felt the issue was “for the Church and Christians to decide [upon], not for parliament to legislate.” In 2014, Parish voted against enabling the courts to deal with proceedings for the divorce of a same sex couple and against making same sex marriage available to armed forces personnel outside the UK.”
      What an ugly old man.

      His god will punish him, and condemn him to eternal damnation then?

      The Tory Party have withdrawn the whip, I report, without further comment.
      68 year old father and grandfather…who must surely have lost his marbles.
      In my day, if a colleague were watching porn in a public work place on the company’s equipment, it would have been summary dismissal..no ifs, no buts.
      What is it about the New Tory?
      They can do anything they like, break laws, accept graft, sexually assault colleagues and staff, and still get o function as a politician, despite their constituency demanding their head/

      England is run by fascists now.

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        “for the Church and Christians to decide”…..do they also get to decide which porn sites he, Parish, watches….hypocrite.

        “The Tory Party have withdrawn the whip”…..just the whip ?…….knew there had to be a whip in it somewhere boom boom….perhaps better they withdraw the device he was watching porn on when he is back in HOC…after his suspension is lifted…..will be probably….he’s a Tory.

        Just saw a funny cartoon of an old woman going up to a man in a room ,who had a film camera, saying

        ” In your porn film, could you mention all the potholes in our area ? My MP ignores all my letters”

        You either laugh or you would cry at it all…..onwards upwards Jack…never ever beaten.

        Have a lovely night Jack ( and everyone else on here)

  32. Dr Jim says:

    It’ll be the next again day afore we ken onythin aboot onythin

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      I ken whit yea mean Dr Jim …….

      BBC reporting Scotland (INO) LOSE in race against carrier pigeon on bringing news to where YOU are….news being another word for propaganda via them…….better tae git yer news fae a carrier pigeon their mair reliable ya ken…….dinnae ruffle their feathers….

      As in …if you are desperate enough to watch BBC Rep Scotland (INO) you are less likely to KEN aboot the news where YOU are or where THEY, the others, are……however they are always first reporting on #SNPBAD news…which is something we all KEN only too well that they dae here in Scotland wae them as a so called news not news programme…we ken aboot it no by actually watching their inferior news not news programme but by reading aboot the rubbish news not news that they dared tae broadcast….we find oot fae reliable sources oan t’internet and in The National whit propaganda they are punting as news not news ………….ken whit a mean.

      BTW KEN is BARBIE’S boyfriend……you might no KEN that…or care….( it’ll be oan BBC Rep Scotland (INO) news not news the nicht but only if they can link KEN tae an #SNPBAD story….ken whit I mean…och aye the noo ).

  33. Unprepared brexit English/British fan about to be hit full on by s**t.

    https://archive.ph/D0QDp

    Sinn Fein retains wide lead days out from Northern Irish election

    BELFAST, April 29 (Reuters) – Sinn Fein holds a six-point lead with less than a week to go to elections in Northern Ireland, a poll showed on Friday, as they seek to become the first Irish nationalist party to win the most seats in the British-run province’s regional parliament.

    • Dr Jim says:

      What will the British nationalists do when the wrong kind of Irish party is voted in by the wrong kind of Irish people
      Channel four reports that the UK government are on the verge of dismissing democracy and imposing direct rule on the British virgin islands because the guy they put in charge was caught doing what British politicians do (breaking the law)

    • And the news where you are is…

      https://archive.ph/PJ2IJ

      Earl and Countess of Wessex faced with protesters during St Lucia visit demanding slavery apology from the Queen

      Protesters in St Lucia have demanded apologies and reparations from the Queen during a visit by the Earl and Countess of Wessex…

      …One protester, who did not give his name, said: “We want reparations now. The Queen of England needs to apologise for slavery.”

      Another added: “London Bridge is falling down.”

      Shout out to St Lucia! 🙂

  34. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Just watched a video of Neil Parish the MP who has now been identified as the MP who watched porn in parliament……an interview where he was on the Tory news channel GB News on the Darren McCaffrey show earlier this week…….. and at the end of interview he was asked about the ‘unnamed MP who watched porn’ he, Parish, then proceeded to discuss the unnamed MP who was watching porn in parliament as if talking about someone else!!!!……….when asked about it he should have declined to comment indeed he could have said what all Tory MP’s seem to rely on just now via every new scandal associated with the Tory party as in ‘ sorry cannot comment as incident being investigated’……….

    BUT instead……he answered as if talking about another person !!……….that in itself is a shocking way to behave almost as if he was confident his name would not be released…….and perhaps he assumed the incident would be eventually swept under the bulging Tory carpet (where many of their scandals are piled up)…..swept under just like the many incidents involving his boss the PM.

    His apology to reporters shown on Channel 4 news this evening on the porn incident means nothing……as there he was a couple of days ago on Tory news channel GB News acting as if he was discussing an incident involving another Tory MP having been the porn watcher…..

    See how Tories here and at HQ talk about the public using their common sense e.g. on Covid etc.

    Well there’s one of their Tory colleagues, Parish, who did NOT have the common sense to NOT watch porn in the HOC in the presence of female MP’s……so not just rules for them and rules for others it also seems common sense also applies to only us, the public, where as they, Tories, can act inappropriately by behaving in a manner that clearly shows that some of them have absolutely NO common sense whatever…….also where was his common sense in responding in that interview on Tory channel GB News to that question in the way that he did…….when he clearly should have , when asked about it, made a non response instead of what he actually did do…….it makes him look more guilty and not repentant at all…very sleazy……I await the hijacked by a porn site line of defence.

  35. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Labour MP Liam Byrne has been found to have bullied a former member of staff and will be suspended from the Commons for two days……..

    Next………..

  36. Golfnut says:

    Lawyers say SNP can begin preparations for indyref2 , headline the times. Canny open the article since I refuse to subscribe. Here’s the link anyway.

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/215556435841901/permalink/1092639994800203/

  37. yesindyref2 says:

    OT
    We saw the 2pm showing of Downton Abbey, A New Era and it was great, best of all the Downton films. With a bit of shopping and of course a MacD. Hope we can afford a treat next month or the one after!

    But reading through the comments here there appears to have been a headline somewhere saying “Earl and Countess of Wessex did or should do something or other”.

    Who are these people? Do people seriously think us common plebs keep a track of all the Court hingers-on and know who they all are? “Oh yes, the Prospect of Whitby is the unmarried Dowager Prince Percy of Pooh Hall in Underbarrow and Overhill and far away”.

    I think I’m just going to refer to all these unknowns in future as “John and Jane Doe” (half the time, the other half it will be Jane and John Doe).

    Hmm, hope the Wizard does some serious breaks today after a good night’s kip.

  38. Dr Jim says:

    Michael Gove endows himself with new powers over the electoral commission to stop Indyref

    Well that’s what he hopes to do, so we’ll see how far that goes, his dancing days in Aberdeen will be over if he tries

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      @ Dr Jim @ 1.18am on April 30th

      George Foulkes will be delighted….he proposed treasury should have control of devolved government spending especially spending on Scottish government via campaigning for independence….however Foulkes has NO qualms on Gove’s Union Unit spending tax payers money on campaigning for the (non) Union as it helps sustains Foulkes financial position as a uber feeder at the Unionist uber trough aka the HOL’s……..a financial position Foulkes is adept at holding the highest position as in being noted as one who tops the expenditure list of highest spending via Labour Lords ….( Foulkes, McConnell, Reid and Robertson were 4 of the Lords of the missing 67 Labour peers who did NOT turn up at vote on Election Bill amendment on 27 April…..Ruth Davidson however did turn up and voted against amendment…thus government won so amendment on bill disagreed with via a majority…..BTW that’s the same Ruth Davidson that supposedly OPPOSES Boris J as PM…as in she truly is a Tory through and through irrespective of who leads them and whatever bills and policies they implement…….lockdown parties incidental when Tory government bill needs passing……as if she cares about lockdown parties…image perception is her motivation when she spouts faux outrage…..her support, voting record, defence of and promotion of Tory policies belie her faux tears and supposed opposition of her party’s leader.

      Dross withdrew his letter to 1922 committee stating Boris J had more important things to deal with by citing via one example the cost of living (Tory) crisis….however it was reported in April of this year that the government’s working group to address the cost living has NOT MET FOR SIX MONTHS despite surging energy prices..Oh…so he, Johnson, is NOT dealing with that…..how very very very unsurprising…..and how typical Dross should either withhold this very pertinent fact or as a political lightweight be totally oblivious to that fact…..

      As to Labour , well like their partners in political crime aka the Tories, they don’t do democracy, fairness, decency or justice indeed like the Tories they seek to oppress the people who live in Scotland to uphold a political system rigged in favour of the English parliament at WM…..funnily enough they, Labour HQ, DO blame the UK government in a Labour run Wales for all of the current woes/damage being inflicted upon people…. but in Scotland conveniently they, both Labour HQ and Scottish (INO) branch office, see it as being the SNP’s fault thus apportion much of the blame upon the Scottish government in failing to ‘mitigate’ UK govt policies….how very Labour of them…using a Tory tactic to win a (non) argument.

      Frankly they are all an absolute shower the lot of them…including the OTHER Tory party in all but party name as in the Lib Dems ( a party name that, considering their current and past political actions, clearly shows ,that as a party name , they are neither liberal nor democrats)…I mean when you choose to align with Tories and have done so via HQ in the past and seek to do so again via branch office in Scotland in future elections, as promoted by Alex Cole Hamilton recently in Council elections, then you have to expect the voters to make the correct assumption that you have more in common with them, Tories, than divides you from them…..surely.

      Unionist parties are all Tories under different colours………..none of them as UK political parties seek to promote the best interests of Scotland or it’s people…….so what choice do we have other than to LEAVE them and hopefully then rejoin a REAL Union aka the EU……

      • Bob Lamont says:

        “Unionist parties are all Tories under different colours………..none of them as UK political parties seek to promote the best interests of Scotland or it’s people……”
        – I suspect what most Scots feel is a sense of betrayal now – NONE of the UK political parties seek to promote the best interests of the people of the UK as a whole, with Scotland as seems the pattern, bearing the brunt of it, particularly harsh after oil, made even more blatant over renewables.
        – From the Beeching cuts of my youth to the Thatcher years to the present fiasco over energy pricing, ever has the UK Government (predominantly Tory) of the day expected the people of this country to gripe but thole it, all to maintain the standards of the few.

        Holyrood is now 22 years old – At 11 years it had it’s first SNP majority government – Only then did the Tories get a glimpse of Scots patience running out and their panic was very real in 2014 – Yet despite that reprieve, they let the opportunity for remedy pass, arrogance prevailed, here we are.

        We may blame English people for being fooled by the propagandists into re-electing Tories for our current dilemma, but in truth would it make ANY great difference were Labour to become a temporary majority ? I suggest not, the difference is a fag paper thin – if Brexit taught Scots anything it was the dangers of analysts and media working in cahoots, now we have the Scotland Office and HMS James Cook.

        On any random day listen to the nonsense emanating from Sarwar, Dross or ACH-wotsisname in Holyrood for a lesson on just how far Scottish politics has degenerated from it’s {hobbled} headline to just being another game, a role-play, the incontinent pigeons of what was supposed to be “concensus politics”. Has any seen consensus over Millie Mae, Ferries, A&E response, Covid , in fact even the weather ?

        Labour and Liberal once had principles, even in the days of MacMillan the Tories had some, now it is only theatrics, with the punters paying dearly for the circus.

        The UK’s electoral system will not be reformed without a HUGE shock to the rUK system – Scots owe it to themselves to re-assert what democracy means beyond trite sloganeering and Glenn Campbell “In my opinion..” pieces to camera – We also owe it to England to show them just how far they’ve been conned over what is supposed to be democracy, and what is supposed to be independent media.

  39. malkymcblain says:

    Just a wee FYI I posted Paul’s entire piece in the comments on this video on YouTube. Paul’s latest effort is simply among the best most informative myth busting cringe eliminating pride restoring pieces I have read in many a year.

    • Eilidh says:

      I just got round to watching Billy Kays speech yesterday and greatly enjoyed it even if I only understood around 60% of the words. I detest those who slag off our native languages both Scots and Gaelic what pathetic people they are

  40. Aye, no such thing as the ‘Scottish cringe’. Scottish people have no cringe about their nationality and culture. It’s just British/English people who are anti-Scottish that ‘cringe’ to try and shame Scots into not being Scottish. That includes the likes of ‘I prefer North British’ Broon who want to be accepted as British/English and not Scottish.

    Do you regularly see non-British mocking the Scots language/accent? I suspect not. I’ve travelled the world with work and never once has that happened to me. Quite the opposite; in the energy industry Scots engineers are highly regarded, being the pioneers of offshore developments for example.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-61192120

    Taking TikTok by storm with the Scots language

    Poet Len Pennie has amassed millions of views and hundreds of thousands of followers for her Scots language videos on social media.

    The 22-year-old linguistics student began posting a Scots word of the day on TikTok and Twitter in an attempt to stave off boredom during lockdown in 2020…

    …Len said she was surprised when she learned that the mast majority of her audience were women from America.

    I suspect an outlander effect here! That and many Americans are of Scottish origin.

    ‘When you go will you send back, a letter from….’

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scottish_diaspora#United_States

    The number of Americans of Scottish descent today is estimated to be 20 to 25 million.

    • Hamish100 says:

      If you have acccess to bbc iplayer watch the series “Hame” – from an Ulster Scots production.
      One part of the series refers to the murder of 2 women by drowning In Dumfries and Galloway for refusing to accept the King as head of their faith. It is awe inspiring due to the bravery of the women and completely depressing as to the cruelty of the perpetrators.

      First I heard of this and I had to hear it by accident on a programme made in Ireland.

      • William Davidson says:

        The two women were the Wigton/Solway Martyrs, Margaret McLauchlan and Margaret Wilson, Covenanters who were ties to stakes on the Solway mud flats in 1685 and drowned by the encroaching tide. They had refused to conform to Episcopalianism. It was expected that 65 year old McLauchlan would die first, persuading 18 year old Wilson to recant, but she didn’t. These and many other stories would have been very familiar to me, as someone brought up in the northern Irish Presbyterian tradition, Covenanters often sought refuge among the Scots population in Co. Antrim, returning when things were less dangerous. Not entirely surprised that their names wouldn’t be widely known in contemporary Scotland, long since a secular, post-religious society, in which the Covenanters might be regarded as somewhat of an embarrassment. They were among hundreds of people executed during the “Killing times,” their case probably standing out because of their gender.
        As someone else mentioned I’m happy to have a copy of Billy Kay’s “Scots : The Mither Tongue,” bought in Caledonia Books in Glasgow many years ago. I was especially pleased that he included a section on Ulster-Scots, speaking as someone brought up in a rural valley in Co. Antrim, who rarely had to use anything but Scots until I passed the “Eleven Plus” and went to a Grammar School.

        • Hamish100 says:

          William,

          Thanks for this update. It is sad that such information was suppressed when I (we?) was at school. The persecution of Presbyterians, Catholic faith and others. I wonder if we will get an apology from Prince William?
          I remember mentioning to my folks when I was wee at school ( non-denominational) about being told about some “Protestant” martyrs in England being killed. I can remember him saying Scotland’s got plenty of our ain martyrs.🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

          • William Davidson says:

            I wouldn’t agree that this period of history has been “suppressed, it’s covered in any decent general Scottish history book. I’m not sure it would be appropriate for Prince William to apologize for these events as they happened under Stuart monarchs and the present royal family has only a very tenuous descent from the Stuarts. The actual killings were usually carried out by Scots, so basically a case of Scots killing Scots for religio-political reasons.

      • Will have a look Hamish.

        It’s a sad irony that Ulster Scots speakers are some of the most pro-union and ‘proud of their NI culture’, yet their fellow British/English nationalists are at continuous pains to point out how such cultures ‘don’t exist’, they are all ‘just really English’, and Ulster Scots ‘isn’t a language / nobody speaks like that’.

        It’s one of the reasons my Ulster Scots speaking Presbyterian gran from NI was a supporter of Irish independence / reunification. She had true respect for the peoples of the emerald isle and believed them all equals capable of governing themselves. The green and the orange united by a white flag of peace. Unlike the DUP who apparently think they are completely incapable of governing themselves, so should let their English nationalist racist abusers abuse, sorry rule them directly; the very same people that betrayed them over the protocol in the first place.

        If the DUP etc want to understand where they’ve gone wrong, it’s this IMO. They are not proud, but have no pride at all. England shafted them because it doesn’t give a crap about them. It sold them out for a better brexit deal for England just as it did with Scotland and her fisheries etc. What kind of idiot unionist in NI would trust the English nationalists again? By contrast, the people of Ireland do see the people of NI as their own, and would love to bring them into the fold. That’s the plain truth of the matter. N. Ireland is loved by Eire, and hated / excluded by England.

  41. Clydebuilt says:

    BBC Radio based in Scotland

    Just interviewed the Boss of an English based hovercraft manufacturer claiming that he can now export to the EU as his products no longer require to meet the “CE” standard.
    Claiming that before BREXIT he couldn’t export to the EU as his products didn’t meet the CE standard.

    Surely this is totally wrong. . . . any products imported into the EU have to meet the CE requirements.

  42. The recent even reminds me of something that happened a good few years ago now when mini Miss SS was in primary school.

    Mrs SS and I went to see the school play, and while we were sitting quietly waiting for the audience to get seated, a family arrived with (great?) grandad and sat behind us. Grandad starts to speak, reminiscing about how his children have long left the local area (rural borders) to work in the city / other parts of the country. The thing is though, he does this in what must have been 100% border Scots. Complete fluency. It was really amazing to hear as it was so natural.

    But then he starts saying that his kids can all ‘speak properly unlike him’. It was really sad. I found myself really wanting to turn around and say ‘but it’s you that is speaking the native language of this area and doing so properly’. Anyway, the play started and that was that…

    It is only an institutionally racist British/English state that could have shamed this man into the feelings he held here.

  43. Straying a bit off-topic after seeing the latest UK economic optimism results. Now reached lows not seen since the 2008 financial crisis.

    Anyway, you can see the political effects in Scotland (my rough dashed line trends and vote events):

    The long term decline in optimism under Blair/Broon culminated in the SNP win of 2007. At this time, polls were showing a big SNP win for the UK 2010 election. However, as the economy recovered, optimism returned, and I have little doubt this led Scots ‘back to labour’ for 2010. One last chance.

    However, the Lib betrayal and the Tory austerity programme crushed optimism, paving the way for a record SNP win in 2011.

    But then Yes was fighting an uphill battle as economic optimism recovered strongly ahead of 2014. Ultimately, I think this was a key factor in No’s favour on the day.

    However since then it’s all been downhill for the union and, unless they can pull something out of the hat to give Scots faith in the UK, it will be all over for them.

    Now of course this is generalising, and there are much deeper, existential/national identity factors underlying things, but economic optimism is a measure of people’s faith in the UK as a country providing them with work/education and welfare. How people feel is influenced by the government of the day, but also wider global events outwith their country.

    When people feel things are going badly and are outwith their control, they will vote in such as way as to get more control if they can. For Scots, this ultimately means voting for independence.

    • Dr Jim says:

      *Our country* has been living beyond it’s means, *our country* is in financial trouble, *our country* needs to spend less, how many times have we heard English governments blame the people for the creation of their mess then have the nerve to place the responsibility to shoulder the austerity the English government impose on the people

      Mr and Mrs Average have zero control over the economy, we pay for mismanagement by the banks, we pay for incompetence and fraud by the government, we even pay for the fallout from lies told to us by previous governments, we pay for the lack of investment in public services when the English government fails to maintain those services then lumps the fault of the crisis onto us

      We have no control over who governs us in Scotland because we’re outnumbered ten to one by England, so when votes are cast whoever England chooses is whoever Scotland Wales and Northern Ireland gets, and what we get is the same party disguised as a different party because England is basically a one party state where the same two take turns at convincing the English electorate they’re not the other one

      Some say the *naivety* of the English voter is not our problem but I disagree massively, England is a country even more used to being told what to do and told what’s right and wrong under the banner of the fake Monarchy than Scotland is, we’ve only had this fakery for around 300 years, the English have been brainwashed forever so they know no different nor can they imagine any differently, if England having changed it’s designation from England to Britain then Britain to Monkeyland and informed the people there that it was for their own good in order to rid themselves of something foreign and bad that they definitely don’t want they’d accept it in a heartbeat, especially if their beloved Queen waved her hand at them and told them it was alright

      We live in the madhouse of Englands design at the whims of posh schoolboys and their relatives

    • Dr Jim says:

      Out this morning I spotted a placard in the middle of a roundabout and it read

      “Stop the SNP vote Alba”

      Two things wrong with this: 1 ridiculously ambitious: 2 Isn’t that the Tory slogan?

      • Hamish100 says:

        Is Scot goes pop still live?

        Asking for a guy in a bath. Lol

        I have to say I did give a numeral in my ballot for ALBA but way behind SNP, Greens, and other independence supporters. Just above liebour, lib dem, austerity and the tories.

      • Clydebuilt says:

        Sounds like advice for Unionists. . . . put up by Unionists

    • Mcaskill is a shameless coward.
      He should have resigned his SNP seat and stood as a Salmondite at the subsequent byelection. He didn’t because he knew that the poor souls who voted him in on an SNP ticket would have kicked out on his obscenely well heeled turn coat derriere.
      Salmond and his sad wee band of middle aged rabble rousers are out to destroy Scotland, not join in the push in ’23 for Self Determination.

      He is now an enemy of Scotland, cheering on the Red Blue and Yellow Colonial Brits.

      • Dr Jim says:

        Wholeheartedly agree Jack, these people are not pro Scotland they’re just anti SNP and that’s no different to the British

      • I think we can conclude that people who call a legal referendum on indy held by our duly elected government a ‘glorified opinion poll’, they are not really an independence supporters. The words might as well have come straight from an English Tory’s mouth.

        If referendums expressing the democratic wills of peoples were just glorified opinion polls, dictators the world over would not bother sending in troops to stop them from happening. If only Putin had thought of this, he could have just declared Ukrainian elections as illegal, and himself as ruler. Sorted. No need for a blood war.

      • daveytee19 says:

        I imagine that MacAskill beleived that he was elected in order to further the cause of, and hopefully obtain, independence, When it became clear that the SNP was dragging its heels on that issue, he presumably felt that the best way of doing what his constituents elected him to do was to join a party that appeared serious about going for independence. That may not have been a wise decision, but I think it was a prinicipled one.

        • Alistair Donaldson says:

          If he had principles he would have resigned his seat and stood again for election under the Alba banner. So, perhaps not principled, just not entirely stupid.

        • Why doesn’t he step down and seek a mandate from his constituents? That is what someone of principle does.

          As things stand, MacAskill is part of a ‘government scots did not vote’ for as his constituents voted / campaigned for / donated to the SNP only to end with with an opposition MP.

          It’s no different to voters electing a Labour MP who then crosses the floor to the Tories. He’s totally disenfranchised them unionist style. Taking their tax money and laughing in their faces.

        • James Mills says:

          The ”principled ” decision was , surely , to resign and stand in the by-election on his ”principles” for his new party !

        • Golfnut says:

          If he had principals he would not have stood as a candidate for the SNP.

          • daveytee19 says:

            Not so. He stood for the SNP in the belief that the SNP would honour their manifesto promise to go for independence. It was with that belief that his constituents elected him. When the SNP didn’t do much towards going for independence MacAskill clearly felt that the best way of doing what he was elected to do was to join another party that appeared to treat the matter of independence with greater urgency.

            As for a mandate from his constituents, MacAskill already had that. In general elections individuals are elected, not parties, though it is reasonable for constituents to expect the person they elect to do what their party promised. The SNP didn’t do what they promised and so by joining Alba, MacAskill was doing his best to do what his constituents elected him to do.

            • Alex Clark says:

              He was elected as an MP for the SNP in December 2019, in March 2020 we went into lockdown but that didn’t stop them from progressing towards an Independence referendum as they published the Referendums (Scotland) Act 2020 that year.

              Just when would you have had your referendum?

            • Pogmothon says:

              or perhaps in future A’ll just short in it to ICSS.

        • Nonsense.
          The man’s a chancer.

  44. Golfnut says:

    This is worth reading as an example of just how far Alba supporters are prepared to go to undermine the FM and the SNP.

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/1081934212006008/permalink/1854165261449562/

  45. Dr Jim says:

    “Dragging their heels on Independence” now I wonder who started that particular totally untrue rumour because it’s been on the go since 2015 five minutes after the FM was elected and each year since as though somehow without sufficient public support for winning one or election victories to back one up the SNP should’ve just “got Independence because” the guru of QAnon and his website said so, then that same guy put all his efforts into trying to do to the SNP what his website had done to Labour

    It was never about Independence, it was about populist self aggrandisement and Twitter style troll tactics of disruption for the sake of it, the cause never mattered, it was always just about the *game* for that guy because if he was genuine he’d still be around rooting for Independence for Scotland instead of trying to encourage folk to join up with him in the latest American Twitter type protesting collective in true blue Trump style
    and now it has spawned this nonsense of one mans ego trip to collect sufficient followers to dethrone the only person who can actually achieve what she says she’ll try to do

    So what’s the difference between Alba and the Tories, no need for a question mark here

    • daveytee19 says:

      “Dragging their heels on independence” isn’t a rumour, it’s a fact. Perhaps you could enlighten me by telling me what steps the SNP has taken since 2014 to progress towards independence. Opinion polls suggest that in spite of all that has happened in the intervening years (Brexit, appalling Tory governments, power grabs, etc) support for independence hasn’t really shifted since 2015 and is if anything slightly lower now than it was then. Disappointing, I hope you’d agree.

      As for Alba and the Tories, you obviously haven’t read Alba’s manifesto. Once you have done, so, give me some examples of policies they share with the Tories (I can think of one, but I’ll let you work that out)..

  46. Hamish100 says:

    Congratulations to Scotlands representatives winning the curling pairs World championships. Watching bbc news no mention other than some football, England beat France at women’s rugby, snooker….. Now if they were called team GB how different the reporting would be.

  47. weefifer3 says:

    I was so annoyed at the outrage directed at Billy Kay, that I promptly ordered his book: Scots, the Mither Tongue. Hopefully some others will do the same….

  48. Capella says:

    Handy explainer of the council wards and how many councillors we can vote for.

    Scottish local elections: How many councillors represent each ward?

    THE local elections to be held in Scotland on Thursday will see 1227 councillors returned.

    The balance of power across the local authorities is likely to vary wildly. In 2017, not one of Scotland’s 32 councils saw a single party take enough seats to command a majority.

    But with so much uncertainty about who will wield power, a key question for voters remains: who is representing me?

    https://archive.ph/KcR3T

  49. Capella says:

    Just to whet your appetite, what the experts predict.

    Who will win Scotland’s council elections? Experts share predictions

    To get a sense of where the five largest parties are placed heading into the May 5 ballot, The Sunday National spoke to three leading polling experts – Mark McGeoghegan (MM), James Kelly (JK) and Mark Diffley (MD).

    https://archive.ph/3Clp2#selection-1645.3-1645.217

    • Dr Jim says:

      Unfortunately some of the content of the pollsters is personal opinion on each of the parties and for that reason James Kelly’s opinion cannot be relied upon as he is a member of a party that opposes the SNP in government, I don’t know the political leanings of the others

      • Hamish100 says:

        Yip. It would have been helpful if they had declared their interest. Then you can read their comments in context.

        The bbc does this all the time with so called journalists from the Spectator and such like appearing as if they are impartial observers, when in fact they are biased and have a set agenda.

        The news last week over the made up story about crossing legs was a set up by the Tories to divert away from the scandal over Johnson and co. breaking the law.
        We then have misogynist Johnson appearing horrified and supportive.

        Is journalism now a pariah career? -sorry to the Ferret and the good work they do.

        • Dr Jim says:

          Very true Hamish, Impartiality on any subject now is impossible to find, ask any football supporter and they’ll insist their team is going to win every game even when they know they aren’t, bias is built in to everything even if you’re trying hard not to to be, it’s human nature

          We need Vulcans to do the polls for us now but we’re stuck with so called journalists and pundits who’re just in it to live long and prattle

      • Capella says:

        I don’t think we can demand complete political neutrality from anyone. What we need is an objective analysis of the facts and that pollsters don’t let their bias skew the results.

        From his twitter I get the impression that Mark McGeoghegan is very competent to discuss polling and I get the impression he supports independence, or at least the right to vote on it.
        We know JK is an Alba supporter but i thought he was reasonably objective in his comments.
        Don’t know Mark Diffley.

        The big test will be next Thursday and we can see who is closest to the actual result.

    • I couldn’t help but notice that the National article is free from the word ‘Alba’.

      An indication of expert opinion on the impact they’re going to make on Thursday?

  50. https://archive.ph/zOmXU

    ‘I don’t think Scots language will be normalised until after independence,’ says Billy Kay

    ….“These are all examples of a country that’s been looking over its shoulders for three centuries for the approval of another culture.

    “It’s internal colonialism. And the people that suffered from it become the perpetrators. The Portuguese had this name for African people who were assimilated into Portuguese culture, called ‘Assimilados’, in places like Angola and Mozambique, and taught to despise the culture they came from.

    “I think to a certain extent, a lot of Scots are assimilates into English culture, and don’t have the educational background and the knowledge of the other traditions to realise how much they’ve lost.”
    KAY goes on to articulate what exactly it is that could be lost – and what he would say to people who see the preservation and evolution of Scots as a pointless pursuit: “Without Scots, we diminish our ability to express ourselves. Scots is tied in with the land, the weather, with the way people have lived and loved in this part of the world for 1000 years.

    It’s people like ‘North British Broon’ and the DUP that have bee looking over their shoulders for English approval; an approval that they’ll never get. No matter how much they want to be English, they can only ever be British.

    • JoMax says:

      One assumes that Gordy Broon would have been happy to have his late father described as a Minister of the Church of North Britain.

      Maybe the Baron Tankerness would prefer to be titled the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of North Britain.

      Why don’t these people just go the whole hog while they’re at it if they’re so determined that their nation be considered merely a region of the Great Anglo-British whatsit.

  51. Bob Lamont says:

    Interesting to note HMS James Cook still allowing their “Scottish census deadline extended after poor response” article to linger on the Politics webpage, inviting speculation on why completion was still short – Even a National piece on the census appeared featuring the ever pretentious Professor Lindsay Paterson implying inviting yet more speculation.

    The intent has been to say the least obvious – Despite failed attempts to gee up public disquiet over the GRA-reforms, now it’s the “Male/Female” question in a Census, but why not spit it out on this occasion ? Purdah ?
    Naturally the Comments provided the entirely predictable answer…

    The old Torches and Pitchforks game is still very much in play…

    • Dr Jim says:

      Create a monster figure blame someone else for creating it compare it to other monster figures then call for it to be destroyed because of the dangers of monsters

    • Eilidh says:

      I know someone who works for the Census their opinion and most of their colleagues about the low census returns is some problems with the online system but more to do with not be able to recruit enough canvassers particularly in big cities like Glasgow to go round the houses to remind people to complete the forms. Quite a lot of the forms were returned in the past via canvassers. It also should be remembered a lot of people only access the Internet via mobile phone. Can you imagine trying to fill that form in a mobile phone. Through in a growing distrust of authority and houses lying for years- there are at least 4 near here it is a complex situation but will have very little to do with the voluntary questions re gender on the forms. Advice centre I work for has assisted quite a few people to complete their forms

      • Eilidh says:

        Re my previous post it should have said throw in a growing distrust… and houses lying empty for years. Sorry need to proof read more before sending brain not working today

        • Pogmothon says:

          Also the fact that the online system that I believed as complete and submitted DONE.

          Does not issue reminders to finalise or submit.

          Eventually got paranoid over forms continually dropping through letter box.
          So went online to check (and possibly have a whinge) had to discover a new password (luckily still had letter with access code) to review the whole thing again before discovering it had not been submitted.

          Mmm how many others are stuck in this limbo knowingly or unknowingly ???????

  52. Capella says:

    For example:

    • Dr Jim says:

      I’d like to see the Scottish government have the power to fine the BBC for trolling the public

    • Would be great if the Tories privatised England’s national broadcaster. However, as the plan is to make the UK a right-wing dictatorship, I suspect the new funding model they’re promising will involve direct payment from the government, putting it completely under Tory control. The Russian model for a state broadcaster.

      Electoral commission…BBC…you see where this is going right? Soon Gove will be deciding what can be broadcast and what can’t be.

  53. Hamish100 says:

    The bbc state broadcaster knows there was always a potential fine to break the law.

    For a so called public broadcaster this is the pits. Pure political gameplay

  54. Polls we have for the cooncil elections, including the day’s panelbase.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2022_Scottish_local_elections#Opinion_polling

  55. davetewart says:

    My elder brother was horrified to see he would have to do the census on-line.
    He spent nearly an hour talking to the call centre to get sent the forms in paper format.. After 2 goes at phoning.
    He is in his 90’s and remembers well that the system was done by canvasers in the past.
    We did the return on-line by my laptop and the questionwere of no concern to him, or me.
    Remember that the media were not up to date on the one year delay in Scotland.

  56. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Just read that the Minister for Brexit opportunities Jacob Rees Mogg has just found his first Brexit opportunity…..and it is in NOT IMPLEMENTING BREXIT.

    This is in relation to delaying detailed checks on food entering UK , checks that were supposedly to have been introduced in July, but have now been pushed back again…. this time to 2023.

    When asked , in an interview, about the reasoning behind this delay JR Mogg said Checks on food imports from the EU ”would have been an act of self-harm”.

    This is the FOURTH time these checks have been delayed.

    THAT as just but one part of Brexit has to SCREAM out that there never WAS and there IS still no plan for Brexit and it’s implementation on the practicalities and that the motivation behind Brexit was not for the benefit of you or I but for others to benefit financially, as in reap the benefits in the damage created because of Brexit……as in all of the damaging fallout…… disaster capitalism.

    Brexit.

    THIS is what Dross and his HQ party endorse and support, Alex Cole-Hamilton and his HQ party now accept and Anas Sarwar and his HQ party say they will make work…….a Brexit imposed upon us in Scotland and one that has damaged our economy, our freedoms, our choices, our reputation in being linked to their UK, our finances and the many negatives we are currently experiencing with having a Brexit Tory party as the ruling government in a dysfunctional and corrupt UK ….and a weak political opposition who , to quote Tony Benn, are Weathercocks.

    Tony Benn quote :

    “I have divided politicians into two categories: the Signposts and the Weathercocks. The Signpost says: ‘This is the way we should go.’ And you don’t have to follow them but if you come back in ten years time the Signpost is still there. The Weathercock hasn’t got an opinion until they’ve looked at the polls, talked to the focus groups, discussed it with the spin doctors. And I’ve no time for Weathercocks, I’m a Signpost man. And in fairness, although I disagreed with everything she did, Mrs Thatcher was a Signpost. She said what she meant. Meant what she said. Did what she said she’d do if you voted for her. So everybody who voted for her shared responsibility for what happened. And I think that we do need a few more Signposts and few fewer Weathercocks”.

    As to the current Tory party, led by Boris Johnson, well sure they would be categorised under a completely new category which if I dared to suggest what that would be….well I would be banned from this site….Lol

  57. yesindyref2 says:

    So I see Neil Mackay has another “Big Kneed” with an article in the Herelad about how we should all get down on our knees and beg for forgiveness for something even our grandparents weren’t born for.

    He’s another “Bow down and greet your Imperial Masters”, except for some odd reason, he seems to think we ARE the Imperial Masters.

    Hey you, grubby serf slave, get my valise and take it into my portmanteau, and don’t spare the horses.

  58. Alex Clark says:

    Nicola Sturgeon was grilled for 17 minutes this morning by Sophie Ridge who was swiftly put back in her box despite her loaded questions by an on-fire FM. Ferry fiasco klaxon!!

    • barpe says:

      I tried to imagine the same interview, but with Bojo answering the questions – the blustering would have been off the scale.
      How lucky Scots are to have such a lucid FM.

    • Capella says:

      She’s very polished at these interviews. Keeps calm and reasonable and remembers the detail. She managed to sound reasonable too on the subject of Trident and NATO. Good performance.

  59. Welsh_Siôn says:

    You will remember the children’s book that is due to released and forced upon our schoolchildren in order to appreciate HM’s contribution to our lives as she celebrates her Platinum Jubilee? Apparently, it’s only now that the Londonian journalists have got wind of the fact that the diffusion of said book ‘has hit a snag’ [sic.] in Wales and Scotland.

    Three times, this journo refers to us as being ‘regions’ of this United [sic.] Kingdom.

    https://www.theguardian.com/books/2022/may/01/childrens-book-on-the-queens-jubilee-given-cold-shoulder-by-schools-in-wales-and-scotland

    So I thought, I’d register my complaint. I won’t hold my breath on publication, but share my thoughts with like-minded individuals on here:

    _____

    Dear Sir,

    So it only appears now, with a month to go that the ‘Jubilee book hits a snag in Wales and Scotland’? Those of us living and following events outside the Londonian bubble have known this since the book’s putative delivery to our schools in the spring. It seems that it is only now that the Observer has managed to catch up.

    And yet, it seems, you haven’t really caught up, either. Three times your correspondent refers to our historic nations and (according to some), key component parts of the family of nations that make up the United [sic.] Kingdom as ‘devolved regions’. One can only assume that your journalist also assumes that England is a non-devolved region.

    Then there is the description that the Welsh government consider the material in the book to be Anglocentric. Nowhere in the article is there anything that counters this argument – there are quotes from H|M herself, facts about the coronation ceremony, anecdotes about the lives of famous Commonwealth figures (‘good guys and girls’, presumably – no mention of those dedicated to overthrowing the British at any time, presumably) and some notable kings and queens (of the region of England, one assumes.)

    A coming together of these regions in forming the United Kingdom will not be illustrated by the bloody, ethnic-cleansing, non-democratic methods employed in so forming the said unions, I have no doubt. What we will have will be a sanitised, air-brushed account of ‘British’ history, a masterpiece of English regionalistic propaganda worthy of Goebbels, aided and abetted by a mass media , itself ignorant (and perhaps wilfully so) of other parts of this Kingdom which suffer under its dead and unequal hand.

    Yours faithfully,

    • Alex Clark says:

      You can but try!

      I read the article and was astounded by this paragraph.

      The UK government reportedly awarded a £12m contract to London-based publisher DK books to produce 211,000 bilingual copies of the book to be distributed to children at just under 3,000 schools and educational establishments in Wales.

      I don’t know if journalists even bother to check these figures or not but if true then the government paid £56.87 for each and every book being used for propaganda purposes aimed at primary school-age children.

      Something there does not look quite right unless there was a “fast track” for book publishers before the deal was done.

  60. Well, I think we can conclude Lord Foulkes isn’t Scottish.

    Just remember, when you are perplexed as to why someone ‘Scottish’ could denigrate Scotland, its people and culture, it’s because they are not Scottish. British and/or English, but not Scottish in any conventional nationality/national identity sense.

    They may be a Scottish citizen, or even see it as a regional identity like Liverpudlian, which they can lay claim to, so excusing their behaviour with ‘But I can’t be anti-Scottish as I am Scottish!’. However, it’s a lie and they know it is, because they are pretending it’s their nationality when they are vehemently opposed to such a nationality legally existing.

    https://archive.ph/RfFow

    Billy Kay leads backlash after George Foulkes claims Scots ‘not a language’

    Anyway, DUP. This guy is your mate right? One of your British brothers? While you are proud of your culture, he thinks it doesn’t exist. Nice friends you have. As a Scottish/Irish person, I do think your language is a real one and you should cherish it. Don’t listen to the brits.

    Vladimir Putin of course claims that Ukrainian isn’t a real language, but just a form of Russian. This is exactly the same thing. Foulkes feels towards Scots as Putin feels towards Ukrainians. It’s not a feeling of brotherly love, that’s for sure.

    • Eilidh says:

      He is an attention seeking auld git with the analytical capabilities of a plank of wood and best ignored.

    • For sure, the guy’s an idiot, but his behaviour is an example of how institutionally anti-Scottish the UK establishment is. If similar comments were directed at other UK minority groups, people would end up in court. But anti-Scottish comments are considered fine in the UK.

      I quote the article:

      Director of the Scots Language Centre Dr Michael Dempster told The National: “George Foulkes recent unqualified and entirely incorrect assertion ‘There is no Scots language is an alarming statement for Scots speakers and activists to read.

      “Scots has national and international recognition, a continuous 700-year literature to attest to its existence, along with the lived experience of speaking Scots of millions of people alive today.

      “Language denialism, sadly, is an obstacle faced both by private speakers of minoritized languages and those of us active in language revitalisation the world over. Denying the existence of a language is denying the legal status and internationally recognised linguistic rights of its speakers.

      “Forced cultural assimilation and stigmatization has been part of the day to day lived experience of Scots speakers for centuries, and as such we often become unaware of its insidious presence. It is indeed a wee mairvil we’re still speaking Scots today.

      “In lieu of a retraction of the statement by George Foulkes, the Scots Language Centre commends the many people the world over offering factual correction and support for the Scots language and its speakers.”

      I’ve said before that it is not Scotland that has the right to self-determination, but her people, the Scots.

      That is why the likes of Foulkes, Rory the Tory etc go to great lengths to try and argue that Scots are ‘really just British/English’. That Scottish is not a nationality / national identity, but just a regional British one like Cockney or Brummie. Hence one of our historic languages is ‘just a dialect of English’.

      Of course right now Scots are busy filling out a form stating their national identity. Rumours are that Tory voters are more reluctant to answer the SNP’s ‘nanny state’ standard exercise for governments. If I was a British voter, I’d not do this as it’s asking to backfire. Instead, I’d be sure to declare my proud Britishness because that’s a dying identity in Scotland, hence we are where we are!

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        “That is why the likes of Foulkes, Rory the Tory etc go to great lengths to try and argue that Scots are ‘really just British/English’”

        Hence why we , on here and also many others, can see NO distinction between Labour, Tories and indeed the Lib Dems……. also why we do not “recognise” the ‘Scottish’ part they (ab)use in their party title here in Scotland…….

    • jfngw says:

      What else do you expect from an Oswestry man. Strange when you find out those that claim we have no border or no language turn out to have been born in England.

  61. Hamish100 says:

    Can we confirm that this is not the policy of the Labour Party in scotchland?

  62. Capella says:

    Something else Nicola does that you can’t imagine any other political leader being capable of – interacting comfortably with normal people.

    • stewartb says:

      Thanks for bringing this to my attention.

      Is this revealing (again?) of a person with a natural, genuine ability to engage with folk – or the opposite? Just a consummate actor who (for some inexplicable reason) takes time out to engage – and have a laugh – with people who quickly turn out to have NO vote in the election for which she is campaigning?

      Now, as a reasonable human being (I hope!) and yes, also someone who supports Scotland and its need for independence, I am content to assume the former. I am pleased we have a FM with such qualities.

      When I look at the replies to the tweet reproduced above, one of first comments I read about this film clip – which had zero direct political content – is making a negative comment. And it’s not from a Unionist but from someone with close to 1,000 twitter followers (including some ‘well known’ figures) who associates with the Alba Party. Dear oh dear, what’s become of us?

      UK Internal Market Act; likely passage pf the Elections Reform Bill and its neutering of the Electoral Commission; oppositional corporate media and biased BBC Scotland; perpetual British/English nationalist governments in Westminster; perpetually oppositional Labour Party to Scotland’s right even to vote on its constitutional future etc. etc. Do we really need, does Scotland really benefit from, more – in this particular instance, wholly unnecessary – negativity from individuals claiming association with the cause of our independence?

      • Dr Jim says:

        Alba are a *we hate Nicola Sturgeon* protest group, nothing more, my guess is after these council elections the Scottish voters will have sent them enough of a message to point out they’ve had enough of this

      • TBH, I almost commented last night that this clip of Nicola Sturgeon being friendly with visitors to our country will have some claiming it’s evidence she’s a secret unionist.

        From what you say, seems I was right!

  63. yesindyref2 says:

    OT (as always)
    Well, it comes to something when the referee wants the world snooker final to ba all about him and not the players. He should be replaced, he clearly has a grudge against O’Sullivan and doesn’t care if Trump is collateral damage.

  64. The Malaprops for Independence group have tweeted that we should leave to turd unstoned as we fight fire with fire, and expose the Brit Nat scandals as they unfold.
    We cannot rely on the media, especially the Brit stockade on Plantation Quay and their mates in the Dead Tree Scrolls to print or broadcast any sleaze, scandal, fraud perpetrated by Friends of the Union.
    They are getting away with murder just like Savile.

  65. Welsh_Siôn says:

    For Capella in a previous comment.

    Perhaps you can trace the etymology of ‘nyaff’ to ascertain if it is related to English ‘knave’ and Welsh ‘cnaf’. (The latter is also the Welsh word for a ‘computer trojan’ now, too.)

    All I can tell you is that English ‘knave’ initially (!) had the ‘k’ pronounced so it must have sounded as ‘knav’ (or something like that.) This is the pronunciation retained by Welsh to this day (even if the English ‘k’ is now mute: English ‘knave’ is, of course, ‘neiv’ by today.) This shows that it was a very early borrowing into Welsh from English – sometime before the Battle of Hastings in all probability.

    Apparently in Shakespeare’s day ‘knave’ was a serious insult to give on someone whereas today it’s a little less forceful. ‘Cnaf’ (plur. ‘cnafon’) in Welsh, too has become softer in regards to the person so address – perhaps, sometimes with a tinge of endearment – but the thing to take from this is that the ‘k’ sound is retained in Welsh (we don’t have the letter ‘k’ in our alphabet) whereas it’s long gone in English.

    Over to you to provide me with a biography of ‘nyaff’ and ‘wee nyaff’ – which seem to end in a ‘f’ sound and not a ‘v’ sound like us.

    • Capella says:

      The Dictionary of the Scots Languages is a bit inconclusive (trans. “it’s not my field). It does list spellings with the initial k or g so could be knaff. Probably Anglo Saxon. It suggests the derivation is the yelping of a small dog.

      OTOH there are some cracking insults listed e.g. “She’s no gonnae mairry that shilpit wee nyaff!”

      https://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/nyaff

  66. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Lindsay Hoyle , Commons speaker, same one that let’s the Tories and Boris Johnson get away with murder in the HOC week after week but is also the same Lindsay Hoyle who adheres to the so called code of conduct with an Iron fist against the SNP MP’s should they , in HIS opinion, step out of line…..is now stating “radical reforms” need to be made in HOC (better late than never is it)…..an exercise in TARRING ALL MP’s with the same brush as opposed to punishment being given to real culprits aka the bad apples….and from what I’ve seen and heard the bad behaviour seems to come largely from TORY MP’s…..and very much their Tory leader and his ministers too.

    I mean he, Hoyle, could start with Boris Johnson who lies week after week at the despatch box in PM Q’s and never really answers the question/s he is asked from any MP other than one where a Tory MP makes a sycophantic (planned) statement (not a Q) that allows Boris Johnson to agree with Tory MP as part of a SCRIPT……same goes for whenever a Tory minister is at the despatch box …they, Tory ministers, also make glib or sarcastic responses to valid questions asked by MP’s ..aka non answers….and they too are fed lines via non questions from sycophantic Tory MP’s….Does the minister agree with me type of question but not an actual question …..along the lines of Oh didn’t we do well statement…..to which the minister responds…yes my honourable friend is correct blah blah blah….and more empty words (lies)…..Hoyle only intervenes if an MP challenges PM or a Tory minister’s non answer and when doing so uses wording Hoyle does not like…..as in when the MP speaks the TRUTH.

    Also Hoyle could reprimand Johnson, when he, Johnson, has made a comment that was clearly him ‘Fat shaming ‘ Ian Blackford to ridicule him which generated much laughter from Tory MP’s
    ( who knows maybe even Hoyle laughed also)….he, Johnson, has done this twice that I have seen and heard and he has NOT been admonished by Lindsay Hoyle…..thus a culture of personal abuse it seems is acceptable to Lindsay Hoyle within the chamber (of Horrors)…is that because the target is the SNP and the person doing it is a Tory and also is the Tory PM ?

    One thing that DOES need radically reformed is Lindsay Hoyle’s complacent attitude to the behaviour of the PM and the Tories in the HOC…..the abuse directed at the SNP MP’s is shocking and has been allowed to continue for a long time……indeed every time Ian Blackford gets up to speak all you hear is shouting and jeering from the Tory benches, so disrespectful, abusive and it goes on unchecked from Lindsay Hoyle …… same Lindsay Hoyle who is now on his high horse about standards and conduct and keen to pursue radical reforms……took him long enough did it not so a tad hypocritical of him to now consider that reforms are needed !!!

    The rot that is currently being exposed is bred from a culture that Boris Johnson has both created and encouraged via his own bad behaviour , which up to now has gone unpunished, thus HIS example to HIS MP’s is that they can break the rules and suffer no consequences…..unfortunately for them, Tory MP’s, they forget that particular rule is only , it seems , applicable for Boris Johnson and he alone.

    If Tory MP’s by a majority are allowed to act this way in the HOC is it any wonder why some of them feel they can then treat women so badly, bully or make sexual advances to their staff and treat any others with such disdain, disrespect and in a abusive and on occasion a sexually inappropriate manner.

    Perhaps time Lindsay Hoyle as commons speaker got his own house in order, as in his role as commons speaker, in the HOC …..a role where he is supposed to be the one that keeps order AND ensures ALL members adhere to a code of conduct and NOT just correcting selective members if they , according to him, fail to respect it…… he, Hoyle, has allowed bad behaviour in the house to go on unchecked for far too long…now with a series of scandals he feels ‘Now Is The Time’ to act…..horse..bolted..stable door… kinda commons speaker that he is ……his interventions have been way too few and too selective and thus the bravado and bad behaviour from some MP’s have made them become conditioned to act so badly in the HOC i.e. the few bad apples who then think they can do and say what they like, whenever they like and to whomever they like…..in and out of their workplace ….

    Though I suspect they, some Tory MP’s, would act , as tis their true nature, in the same way if they were NOT Tory MP’s but working in a role outwith politics….as it seems the selection process for Tory candidates involves them being sourced mainly from the gutter from the behaviour I have seen and heard from some of the ones who have been elected as Tory MP’s and then who act in such a atrocious manner in the HOC….scandals waiting to happen I would call them.

    Funnily enough I have noticed the Tories at Holyrood are also quite disruptive in the chamber….a tactic they deploy that does them no credit indeed it exposes them to be no better than their masters at HQ….in more ways than just their behaviour in the chamber.

    What an absolute shower….including Lindsay Hoyle.

  67. Capella says:

    Mike Small reflects on a week of efforts to erase Scotland. From Rory Stewart, to the Billy Kay outrage, to No to Indyref2, Baron Foulkes, Stephen Daisley. I can’t keep up.

    The ridiculous notions from Scottish Unionists should be taken seriously

    THE magnificent irony of swathes of Conservative and Unionist residents refusing to complete their census form which they perceived as being part of the Scottish Government “nanny state”, then blaming the Scottish Government for incompetence in the process is something to behold.

    In doing so many people will have removed themselves from future history. Unionists obliterating themselves from the records does admittedly offer a late-spring glimmer of schadenfreude. But there are other grimmer glimpses of erasure going on.

    The last week saw a queue forming to erase and obliterate the idea of Scotland, Scottish culture and Scottish democracy.

    https://archive.ph/a26KF

  68. Latest from the sunlit uplands.

    https://archive.ph/7JhpH

    Bank of England ‘duty bound’ to trigger recession to curb inflation

    Ex-official says policymakers must shrink the UK economy to limit upward pressure on prices made worse by Brexit

    https://archive.ph/CtYtj

    Brexit has clobbered smaller businesses

    …One paper by the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics finds that Britain’s departure from the single market at the end of 2020 led to only a temporary dip in its exports to the eu relative to its sales elsewhere. But when they look at “trade ties”, or the range of products traded with different member states, they find a plunge of 30% (see left-hand chart). The drop is concentrated in lighter trade flows to dinkier countries. That looks suspiciously like smaller exporters giving up.

  69. JB says:

    I’d only really quibble with one part of your piece, that is ‘These grammatical and phonological differences end sharply along the Scottish-English political border’.

    I would maintain that Northumbrian, Georgie, and to an lesser degree Mackam are dialects not of English, but of Scots. So there is no bright line between Northumberland and the Borders, which is hardly surprising given the history.

    Folks in that part of England usually code switch between the local ‘dialect’ and English; and a number of those grammatical and syntactic differences are also present there. This then leads to more noticeable complaints by folks from other areas in England about improper use if they’re exposed to it.

    I grew up in SE Northumberland, and generally have little trouble understanding Scots, only occasionally coming across a new (to me) word, or unfamiliar pronunciation. e.g. timely to Thursdays vote, is the “vote ’til you boak” admonishment, I learnt that last word as ‘bowk’, I learnt ‘hame’ as ‘hyame’ etc.

    I listened to Billy Kay’s address on the parliament website, and had no real trouble, there only being a handful of words I didn’t get the first time through. FWIW I also understood the recordings and writings on the ayecan website, hence I filled in the census indicating I could understand and read Scots.

    • I would maintain that Northumbrian, Georgie, and to an lesser degree Mackam are dialects not of English, but of Scots.

      I’d agree with that. Scots does have origins in Northumbrian old English, developing as it did in the lowland Scotland between English to the south in England and Gaelic – likewise a big influence on Scots – to the north / and west.*

      Languages are form of communication / expression, and they continuously adapt to facilitate that. If you were a border Scot, then you’d need to chat to the people on the other side of the river regularly when trading etc in times of peace. That or throw insults from the battlements at them! 🙂

      You might think that such cross border chat would encourage the development of a ‘middle earth’ Rory style, with the border melting away in people’s eyes. However, that’s not what happens at all, because borders historically meant warfare, raids etc as kingdoms argued over these. This results in a hardening of borders as those living close to either side of it constantly watch each other for signs of trouble while seeking clear demarcation to avoid fights, and for the correct enforcement of laws. They become nationalistic in defence of their land as they are right at the front line.

      At the same time, geographic features (rivers, estuaries, hill/mountain ranges) tend to be selected for demarcation as they make the latter straightforward, but are also defensible / form barriers to the movement of people.

      Anyway, the net result is that the borders region is heavily fortified, with the border very clearly defined; a product of history, and an excellent example of how modern national borders came to be. Scots flags fly proudly in Coldstream, within spitting distance of England across the tweed. People in the south of Scotland today actually more strongly identify as Scottish than other areas of Scotland, including Edinburgh!

      Contrast the N. Irish border which is completely artificial, and did not naturally evolve. It makes zero sense and for its entire length it separates Irish (republicans) from Irish (republicans). Hence the cause of so much trouble.

      By contrast, the Scottish border helped keep the peace, for unless Scots wished to give up being Scottish and become English, a border needed to exist somewhere. If not, the fighting would start until one was agreed!

      And if you tried to wipe out Scotland’s border Rory style, that could only result in trouble as the Scots are not English and the English not Scots! 🙂


      *Add to that French, Latin, Norse, languages from the low countries… A rich tapestry like all languages.

      • Legerwood says:

        Hardly surprising that there is a degree of similarity in language/place names (eg Yarrow) between Northumbria and Scotland as far as Edinburgh and the R. Forth since this area of Scotland was ruled from Northumberland for around 400 years. Proximity kept the connection alive thereafter.

        From Wikipedia
        “”Later, the region of present-day Northumberland formed the core of the Anglian kingdom of Bernicia (from about 547), which united with Deira (south of the River Tees) to form the kingdom of Northumbria in the 7th century. The historical boundaries of Northumbria under King Edwin (reigned 616–633) stretched from the Humber in the south to the Forth in the north. After the battle of Nechtansmere its influence north of the Tweed began to decline as the Picts gradually reclaimed the land previously invaded by the Saxon kingdom. In 1018 its northern part, the region between the Tweed and the Forth (including Lothian that contains present-day Edinburgh), was ceded to the Kingdom of Scotland.””

  70. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Dear bookworms,

    Just a bit of publicity about a book some of you might enjoy reading.

    I know a good many enjoy history. Probably everyone here (including lurkers) also has an active interest in politics. Many Scots know far too little about my country.

    So I present this to you.

    https://nation.cymru/culture/from-militant-action-to-marches-part-one-ant-heald-interviews-historian-and-author-wyn-thomas/

    Note I have n o involvement with any groups mentioned nor the book or author themselves. I’m merely sharing ‘a damn good interesting read’ with others who may also find it interesting. (More informative than that HM Platinum Anniversary cobblers, anyway!)

  71. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Gammons and their opposition to anyone who don’t speak their language. p.323

    https://nation.cymru/news/welsh-conservative-candidates-criticised-for-leaflet-promising-to-oppose-divisive-welsh-language-demands/

    Welsh Conservative candidates criticised for leaflet promising to ‘oppose divisive Welsh language demands’

    03 May 2022 2 minutes Read

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