The state pantomime of Parliament

This week we had the spectacle that is the state opening of the Westminster Parliament in which elderly men and women raided the dressing up box and bedecked themselves in fancy costumes. The vast majority of the Lords and Ladies in their ermine robes and coronets are no more lords or ladies than anyone else. They owe their pretendy titles to the patronage of a Prime Minister for services or donations rendered. They don’t embody nobility, they embody grift and time-serving.

The ceremony of the state opening of Parliament is neither ancient nor steeped in tradition, the pageant was devised in its essentials in Victorian times in order to bestow an air of hoary legitimacy to an undemocratic Parliament which was under severe pressure to grant the vote to all adult men irrespective of wealth or property, a pressure which Westminster resisted until 1918, when women over the age of 30 were granted the right to vote too. Its supposedly ancient rituals are nothing of the sort. They are simply a species of theatre aimed at hiding the lack of democracy and accountability in the British state.

The traditional search of the cellars of the Palace of Westminster is conducted ahead of the State opening of Parliament and dates back to 1605 when Tory MPs used to hide stashes of tractor porn and cocaine down there.

In its current form the state opening is a creation of the reign of Victoria’s successor Edward VII, a vain and insecure man more interested in gambling, eating, drinking, hunting, and womanising than the welfare of his subjects. The pomp and flummery of the state opening was designed as a sop to the massive ego of a man who devoted his life and energies to self-indulgence. Just like the privileged and entitled royals who starred in this panto, it was an embarrassment. This is what democracy in the UK in 2022 looks like.

In the absence of the Queen the event was presided over by Prince Charles, wearing a full dress admiral’s uniform for the occasion even though he has never been and never will be a real admiral, he was dripping with jewels and his chest was weighed down with medals he’d never earned but which he had been given by his maw so that he wouldn’t feel left out when in the company of people who really had earned the medals pinned to their uniforms. What Charles and other members of his family sport are not medals won for valour or for great achievement, the only thing they have achieved is the great fortune of being born into immense wealth and privilege. The medals, decorations and gew-gaws which adorn their fancy uniforms are nothing more than the awards equivalent of a pity fuck.

Charles sat on a golden throne beside a crown of gold and precious jewels and informed his mother’s subjects that her government could not be arsed to do anything much to help its citizens cope with a cost of living crisis which in no small measure is a creation of this government and which it is about to make even worse by threatening a trade war with the EU in order to reward the DUP for its pig-headed intransigence over the Northern Irish protocol which the British Government itself negotiated and agreed to. This is despite the fact that in last week’s Stormont elections the people of Northern Ireland, using a strictly proportional voting system, gave a large majority to parties which support the Protocol.

The jewel encrusted crown which was brought to Westminster in its own Rolls Royce is worth an estimated £3.5 billion, a sum which could rescue millions of families from poverty. It sat beside a jewel encrusted prince who lives a life of privilege and luxury beyond the imaginations of most of us, privileges and luxury which we all pay for. You couldn’t ask for a starker illustration of the priorities of the British state.

However this is a government which is not content with rewarding the parties which lost last week’s elections in Northern Ireland, the speech intoned by Charles like he was doing us all a favour also contained provisions to further the UK’s descent into authoritarianism, Having recently given itself control over the hitherto independent electoral commission, this government wants to follow it up by criminalising many forms of public protest and demonstrations, demonising refugees, deporting asylum seekers to a dictatorship which recently experienced an actual genocide, and trashing what is left of Britain’s international reputation by ripping up an international treaty that it had negotiated and agreed to.

Just like democracy in the UK, the entire event is play acting which is devoid of real substance, a ridiculous travesty where people dressed up in fancy uniforms covered in medals which they have not earned pretend that they are participating in an ancient and time honoured ritual in order to showcase a democracy which is as fake as the historicity of this sop of a pageant. This was the British establishment saying, “Look here peasants, this is our imperial state, not the modern democracy you want, so just do as you’re told, pay your taxes, and Nicholas Witchell will be along in a few minutes to witter on about street parties for the platinum jubilee.”

The State Opening of Parliament is an absurd, archaic, pantomime that should be consigned to the dustbin of history, along with all the rest of the ridiculous, anachronistic pseudo-historical rituals. It’s long past time that Britain grew up and stopped wallowing in a dream of the past.

The state opening of Parliament is a ritual introduced in Victorian times in order to distract and deflect from the popular demand for a government which was democratic, representative, and accountable. One hundred and seventy years later it is still performing the same role. However with the inevitability that within a couple of years Charles will take over from his mother, who by virtue of her longevity enjoys a respect which the scandal ridden Charles can never hope to receive, there is a sense that the wheels are about to come off the royal carriage of pageantry and pomp which sustains and inflates the British nationalist exceptionalism disguising the democratic deficit at the heart of the British state.

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141 comments on “The state pantomime of Parliament

  1. On fire today, Paul. Eloquently debunking the Pomp and Circumstance.
    Please keep up the good work.

  2. Robert Ramsay says:

    I am loving your articles. Today’s is absolutely brilliant. It should be distributed to every man and woman in our land. Thank you for expressing what many of us feel.

  3. deelsdugs says:

    Superb Paul!
    The Victorians have a lot to answer to, and so do the turds that wrap themselves in ill-gotten avarice.

  4. Everytime that I see these people, all dressed up in their finery, I’m not impressed. Instead I think of old turn-of-the-century news reels of Austrian and Russian nobility. They too thought that all that pomp and circumstance showed how important they were, and that it would all go on forever. This lot of Rurutanians will soon be going the same way.

  5. Stephen McKenzie says:

    Very good and informative.

    I did see some of this “pageant”, but I didn’t realise that the crown had been driven there in its own limousine! I did notice that when the ornate flunky sat the crown down on its own chair next to Charles. The said flunky reached behind the chair and then carried off what seemed to be a gold fishing rod.

    I suspect my blood is not blue enough to understand what the fishing rod was for..

    • What gets me is that Lizzie wasn’t able to attend the opening of Parliament. (Not that it makes a blind bit of difference to this Victorian farce.) but she can manage to go and see her cuddies running. Tells us where her priorities lie, and that’s with her own pleasures.

  6. From Tampongate:

    CHARLES: Oh, God. I’ll just live inside your trousers or something. It would be much easier!

    CAMILLA: (laughing) What are you going to turn into, a pair of knickers? (Both laugh). Oh, you’re going to come back as a pair of knickers.

    CHARLES: Or, God forbid, a Tampax. Just my luck! (Laughs)

    CAMILLA: You are a complete idiot! (Laughs) Oh, what a wonderful idea

    I’ll leave that there.

    I can’t see Glenn or Gary quoting from Wee Ginger Dug any time soon, can you?
    Magnificent, Paul. See you in the stockades, tra1tor.
    (Not) long to reign over us.

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      Just thinking aloud.

      Previously, every time you typed in ‘tra!tor’ into WoS, Stu always changed it to ‘tractor’.

      Now that we have a soon to be ex-Tory MP studiously looking at ‘tractor porn’ in the HoC, you get the feeling that Stu will have to change is vocabulary, again. Is there anyone here who could be asked to nip on over to see if he now allows ‘tra!tor’ in lieu?

      (I’m not volunteering – I left soon enough when he started rubbishing Scottish Gaelic.)

  7. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Channel Hopping very late last night….happened to hop onto Talk TV and a phone in.( I know me bad).

    Hopped in at the midst of the debate…but got the jist based on the two callers that I heard who phoned in that it was obviously in relation to Tory MP Lee Anderson’s horrendous speech in HOC on Foodbanks and people’s apparent , according to him, lack of cooking skills and their inability to budget.

    Two callers..both working class.

    One said he and his wife for the last 25 years had budgeted using a strict budget and so other people should do the same as we all should live within our means. If you can’t afford it you do without. He also said that if they, others, want more they should get another job that pays better….simples apparently…

    The other caller , a woman, said people today don’t know the meaning of REAL poverty. She said that in the 50’s and 60’s poor people didn’t, according to her, have shoes. So poverty today was not REAL poverty in comparison to previous decades ……so basically be grateful you have shoes on your feet but nothing to eat and unable to heat (your home) kinda vibe apparently….mind you there’s shoes and there’s shoes……sure someone like J R Mogg gets his shoes specially (hand) made or sourced from yon place in London that makes yon hand made suits aka Saville Row…but that’s okay cause he deserves it as he has money and privilege so fair’s fair…..

    Where do you even start with people who make these arguments .

    They obviously don’t see that poverty should be something governments should try their best to eradicate in a country not increase and ignore it. It would appear that both of them obviously saw poverty as a problem not caused by policies enforced by a cruel and uncaring Tory government but by the people themselves who are in this impoverished position. No empathy or willingness to understand the different reasons people find themselves in poverty….just sweeping generalisations and an overall lack of willingness to challenge the fact that it should, in a supposed rich country in the 21st century, still exist and yet fail to be eased or addressed by it’s government.

    This attitude plays very much into the Tory mantra of knowing ones place and thus living within your means in other words if you have nowt you get nowt and you certainly deserve to have and get nowt under a Tory government …..so much could be said as to why these two attitudes were wrong for a multitude of reasons BUT what it also says is how easy it is to see that if some others in their UK think the same as these two callers then it is easy to explain how Brexit was won ,and for many is still supported , but also to see how the Tories got a 81 seat majority at WM…….blame the victims not the culprits kinda vibe in a Tory Brexit Bwitain apparently.

    I sometimes wonder if there is different species within the human race because nothing these two callers said made me think they were in any way similar to who I am as a human being…perhaps both of them are victims of a bad education though that might be letting them off too lightly…anyway I changed channels before my soul died completely…..

    So forget trying to have a good life as in the best life you can while alive on Earth…..just exist seems to be the reasoning here….while others far more fortunate live a much better life….in some cases…very much at your expense….and for some among the working class this is something they endorse to everyone’s detriment including their own…..with the OBVIOUS exception being those others too wealthy to care about poverty as their too busy living their best life…..very much aided and supported by SOME working class people like those two callers on that phone in last night who i suspect were NOT unique in their attitude.

    Sorry for length of comment.

  8. James Mills says:

    The Royal Propaganda Machine has been turned up to max this morning by the Establishment .

    William and Kate ( pat pending ! ) have been on ALL radio stations appealing to us peasants to be aware of Mental Awareness Day .

    Speaking from their extensive worrying experiences of not knowing where the money is to be found to pay for their next Carribean / Colonial Condescending Extravaganza , they have been urging us , the little people who are unaware of the problems facing society , to take a minute and phone someone who is lonely . They , no doubt , will be phoning uncle Andrew !

    I may be alone in feeling furious at being talked down to by this supremely priveliged couple of parasites , particularly at a time when so many ordinary people’s mental health is being tested with unprecedented cost of living rises .
    Most people’s mental well-being is often associated with not having the means to feed , clothe and generally support their kids .
    To have this pair of establishment pr*cks come out and speak to us as if they shared , or even understood , the pressures which impinge on our mental health is insulting in the extreme .

    I would be happier in my mental health if they simply retreated to their home ( plenty to choose from ! ) and left us plebs to get on with our lives without the feigned concern about a world they know nothing about .
    Their intervention is as insulting as the billionaire Chancellor telling us he empathises with the poor – from whom he removed £20 per week !

    Just F*ck Off !!

    • Margaret Barrie says:

      You are not alone in feeling furious, James … there are tens of thousands of us, I bet, who feel exactly the same.

    • Dr Jim says:

      There’s so many people constantly banging on about mental health, it’s affecting my mental health

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Well said James…

      “Their intervention is as insulting as the billionaire Chancellor telling us he empathises with the poor – from whom he removed £20 per week !”

      As in THE same chancellor who said this week in an interview that ‘the government’s computer system wouldn’t let him increase benefits further this year in response to the cost of living crisis’

      The chancellor acknowledges “technical problems sounds like an excuse”…

      Many have responded to this by saying ” so… the computer says NO then” parodying catchphrase from LITTLE Britain…how very apt…

  9. Hamish100 says:

    -yip-

    The royals are good at patronising the rest of us. Still the wee psychophants lust after them such as footballl owners from Edinburgh, Tory, Lib, and labour MSP’s/ MP’s. So many brown noses and they luv it.

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Deservedly so Paul …….

      I swear to God….without people like you my depression would most definitely get the better of me because there are times when I just feel so very very down….then I read your brilliant pieces in your blog…I then add a comment and it’s like a weight has been lifted…I have a voice…and I read other like minded people’s comments…and suddenly all does not feel lost ….so maybe sometimes feel down occasionally but never ever totally beaten.

      Keep keeping on….power to your pen

    • Pogmothon says:

      “The blogger is Paul Kavanagh who fights on, dugless, supporting pro-independence parties and not going down a rabbit hole of conspiracy theories.”

      I really hope the comment is actually as written I.e. sans dug and not a type o’ missing a
      ross.

  10. yesindyref2 says:

    In 1918 the property restrictions were removed from men, but were still there for women so not all could vote – somewhere over half. It wasn’t until 2028 that all women were able to vote, and the age dropped to 21 for them.

    It was Rees-Mogg senior who was responsible for the resistance to women!

    (I made that bit up).

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      It wasn’t until 2028 that all women were able to vote, and the age dropped to 21 for them.

      _________

      So ALL women STILL can’t vote?

      😉

  11. Margaret Barrie says:

    What an excellent summing-up of the utter nonsense that is the State Opening of Parliament, Paul. Your article, I swear, reflects the complete contempt most of us in Scotland feel towards this frankly revolting spectacle! Deliberately blanked watching this horror show for dozens of years now.

    Thank you for your wonderful way with words and facts, which skilfully exposes the artifice and ridiculousness of the anachronistic sham that it is.

    Long may you be able to keep up your great work, Paul. We need voices like yours.

  12. Alice says:

    My husband got an invite today from a local community organisation for a lunch type affair plus entertainment to celebrate volunteers week. The plan for the do includes a toast to the Queen….Appears Sticky establishment fingers popping cash to usually very tightly budgeted ordinary folks volunteer groups to create image of the peasants celebrating her platinum whatever. Husband not going to the lunch.

    Thank you for top class piece WGD….

  13. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Does anyone else think how obscene and (un)timely it is that on the back of Tory MP Lee Anderson’s recent (unwanted) and very much back to Victorian Dickensian times themed advice on Budgeting and cooking skills that we also have the media obsessing about and announcing FOOD fit for a Queen via a Jubilee pudding….two versions of let them eat cake….though one cake so much better and richer than the other……recipe supplied by one of her ‘subjects’……not a mere trifle by any means….God save ‘our’ (their) Queens Trifle…..

    Some will wave their FLAGS to celebrate this……others will FLAG up the fact that to celebrate the reign of one of the biggest benefactors of benefits via Tax payers at a time when some in THEIR (HER) UK are struggling to feed their families while simultanously these same families are being told by Tory MP’s to buy, make and eat budget food unfit for a queens banquet but fit for them as her compliant and subservient subjects surely exemplifies why THEIR Britain is broken and beyond repair…….what else will be on the menu in her Jubilee banquet…roasted p(h)easants….. ….with a recipe supplied by Tory MP Lee Anderson…..while he himself eats GOOD food greatly subsidised and provided to him in the HOC restaurants…..wonder what’s in his fridge at his home and where sourced from ?

    Out of touch, out of reach and frankly should be OUT …..that’s how I see royals (and Tories)….no wonder their UK is a laughing stock to so many others in the world……but a least we have SHOES on our feet…according to ‘somebody’…..who knew shoes were a luxury item in a post Brexit Bwitain……can you eat them ?…shoes that is…..

    God Save their Queen who reigns over Foodbanks in HER time as Queen…..to be continued by other royals in their time too (should they survive as Bwitish (English) royalty)……and also very much continued and increased by Tories……Vote Tory to get more Foodbanks….

    Make it all stop somebody…..please.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Let them eat 20p cake

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        More like crumbs Dr Jim…..as 20p for a Cake is too extravagant…..but a 20p cake would feed a family of six allegedly….as per a cooking lesson demonstrated via Tory MP Lee Anderson…….the MP for the Town CantCookWontCook seemingly….

        Isabel Oakeshott has porridge recipes I believe…ones that are suitable for breakfast…brunch darling…Lunch…Dinner and supper……British porridge obviously…..ye cannae whack it…..poor people can budget and eat gruel washed down with water……Happy days are here to stay ……a Brexit opportunity apparently….we’ve had ice age…stone age….now it’s Porridge age….then we all age before our time…..and Lee Anderson will do the hokey cokey as we all fall down….from starvation and hypothermia…..happy days are here again…..

        BTW when is Lee Anderson bringing out his cookbook ….called ‘How to starve on a budget while Tories in charge at WM’….with tips on foraging…through the buckets of Tory MP’s…….with recipes for leftovers from the plates of Tory MP’s HOC lunches and dinners ……very cordon blue…oops sorry meant cordon bleu……one Tory MP’s leftovers is another man’s meal for a family of six allegedly.

        Tories and their supporters so very much in touch with the elitist fantasy world that they inhabit while happy to leave the rest of us living in the Hellish reality created by them for us …..

        Never vote Tory …..of any colour…..

    • Iain says:

      Lee Anderson is currently a Tory MP. Previously he was Labour.
      One arse. Two cheeks.

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Indeed..just look at Kate Hoey, John Woodcock, Ian Austin and John Mann who are now all in the HOL’s…..Labour want us all to forget about them……all were against Corbyn but just LOVED the Tories …….and not forgetting the recent Tory MP who moved over to the Labour benches…a home from home…politically….. courtesy of Starmer’s New New Labour party same as Blair’s old New Labour party…..hence why English people vote Tory…..as they prefer to vote for the REAL thing as opposed to the poundshop variety……also not forgetting the odious ex Labour MP Caroline Flint who lost her seat in 2019 GE…..who is another Brexiteer who is now ‘guesting’ on Tory news channel GB News……..an absolute shower…..

  14. I can’t help but feel that we won’t have a Queen come iref2. Time will have either caught up with her or she’ll have had to abdicate due to ill health. I don’t wish ill on anyone, but all the signs are that her reign is very close to the end. I suspect the passing of Philip has taken its toll. While she might be a filthy rich Tory subsidy junkie living the high life on the backs of the poor, she’s still human and such a personal loss can take a bit toll physically and mentally. I doubt her favourite Andrew paying compensation to a minor it is claimed he sexually abused helped things.

    Anyway, there’s a definite feel the planets are aligning and that, after a lull, the final collapse of the British state will happen much more quickly than you might imagine. The pantomime described shows how old and outdated it is. The last remnants of an empire living in the past as it all comes crashing down around it. The sun set on the empire in 1997 as the Celtic nations voted for indy and Hong Kong returned to China. In effect, that signaled the imperial retreat had finally reached UK shores. The second last stage of this is of course the end of the UK of GB as Scotland votes for indy and NI rejoins Eire. Welsh indy would then take things right back to where it all began; with England just England.

    Anyway, the US is really ramping up the pressure as it’s the guarantor of the GFA. They are going to make sure the protocol stays or England will face serious sanctions. I expect a special envoy to arrive shortly.

    • Celtic nations voted for semi indy… I meant to say.

      • Dr Jim says:

        Sinn Fein in Northern Ireland reflects the situation of so called British politics, Scotland Wales and Northern Ireland can win all the elections there are, but when we do win under the rules imposed by the so called British they then appear in their different guises to dismiss the so called democracy they set up change the rules and begin again

        There are two phrases the British government are the only ones allowed to use

        *Now is not the time* and *It’s time for change*

        • Not-My-Real-Name says:

          “There are two phrases the British government are the only ones allowed to use

          *Now is not the time* and *It’s time for change*”

          And…”Let’s wait for the outcome of the investigation”….that’s being used a lot these days by Tory MP’s too Dr Jim….and probably in the future days to come too….as in future scandals that I am sure will surface also …

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Indeed SS…

      Have a nice day (evening)

      🙂

    • Iain says:

      Why do you call Ireland Eire (sic)?
      Do you call Germany Deutschland?

  15. Capella says:

    “Like jewels in a crown, the precious stones glittered in the queen’s round metal hat.”

    From Jack Handey Quotes

  16. davetewart says:

    OT
    The Florida tower block that collapsed has been resolved by the insurance companies at $1billion.
    Compare with the Greenfell tower in London.

  17. Capella says:

    Ballot Box Scotland has an interesting graph showing second preference votes in Glasgow. Over 15% of Labour voters put the SNP second.
    This is just Glasgow as all the data isn’t in yet.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Very interesting indeed, I notice *others* did well and if *no preference* was a party they could’ve have finished higher than Tories and Labour

    • grizebard says:

      This is interesting, and presented in a nicely digestible form. Because it (intentionally) focusses upon cross-party transfers and ignores those for the same party where that’s possible, it doesn’t reveal that there seems to be a surprisingly large proportion of Labour voters in Glasgow who only enter a single preference, even when there’s more than one Labour candidate standing. (Still as an “X”, one suspects.)

    • Statgeek says:

      Interesting. Glasgow Labourites being more inclined to not have a 2nd preference than other parties, and Tory voters there most inclined to shift to Labour for the pro-Union/Anti-SNP vote presumably.

      I wonder if the fairly even split of 2nd prefs among Labourites to the four main other parties indicates a general lack of favour, but a determination to ‘vote till you boak’ in that party too?

      I imagine the trends in other parts of the country will be very different.

  18. ADD says:

    The sight of the Royal Bum resting on his Mammy’s chair, plus all the aristocratic bums resting on the red leather, with the riff-raff crowded standing at the door really sums up the State Opening of Parliament. An absolute, very expensive farce. If Johnson really wants to save money he could sack the ermine wearers instead of sacking workers. £360 odd pounds a day expenses, plus subsidised meals and alcohol – it would all mount up to a useful sum.
    The other thing that struck me was, looking at the government front bench, I have never seen such a line of faces that I would never get tired of punching.

  19. grizebard says:

    “[…] his chest was weighed down with medals he’d never earned” – my thoughts exactly. In effect he’s an impostor, his over-decorated presence a visual mockery of all genuine medal wearers. As crown prince or eventual monarch, he wears Royal Orders to which he is properly entitled, so why does he need to add any further status symbols, ones that are self-evidently fake? Is he that insecure?

    “the speech […] also contained provisions to further the UK’s descent into authoritarianism” is the increasingly unpleasant reality that underlies all the superficial bling. The UK’s non-performing circus is in the hands of very scary clowns.

  20. stewartb says:

    For those of us that that live in – and vote in – one of the nations of the UK that rejected by a majority the present Westminster government – and live in a nation that has no effective agency over decisions taken in Westminster – what follows is very far from reassuring!!

    It’s from a commentary on the recent Queen’s Speech by the establishment-centred think tank, the Institute for Government (IfG).

    See: https://www.instituteforgovernment.org.uk/blog/queens-speech-promises

    It states: ‘There is a contradiction at the heart of the Queen’s Speech:

    ‘There is a contradiction – a constitutionally important one – embedded in the speech. On one hand, the government talks about giving parliament powers to scrutinise bills more closely. On the other, IT AIMS TO GIVE MINISTERS MORE POWERS TO CIRCUMVENT PARLIAMENT. This is a point on which parliamentarians – including many Conservative MPs – want reassurance. The speech is less than reassuring on this point.’ (my emphasis)

    The same IfG commentary also has this: ‘The most striking point about the legislative programme the government set out in the Queen’s Speech was its scale. In sheer number, this is more than it reasonably could be expected to deliver even if many bills were not controversial – and they will be. For those reasons, IT READS LIKE A MANIFESTO AIMED AT THE PARTY BASE MORE THAN A REALISTIC PROGRAMME. ‘

    Now we know where this ‘party base’ resides. Not much of it resides in Scotland. Still, this Tory base – now supplemented apparently by ‘traditional Labour voters’ in so called ‘Red Wall’ and Brexit-supporting areas – has the numbers to choose which party governs over us again and again and again whilst in this Union!

  21. The will of the people is for the protocol, just as the USA – the guarantor of the GFA – says. It must stand or England becomes Russia / China / Belarus…

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-61427418

    NI Election 2022: Prime minister to visit NI as DUP blocks assembly

    I predict Brengland will back down as it doesn’t really care about the way too non-English British in the province. The latter will start bombing civilians in response, just like they did before, and that will cause the decent majority of NI people to back reunification, bringing a final end to this relic imperial aberration and the 100 years of violence the partitioning caused.

    • Dr Jim says:

      I agree, I believe Johnson and his cabal rather like the idea of owning Northern Ireland but it’s just too much bother to pay attention to governing the place and sooner rather than later they’ll find a way to let it go, probably by sliding it sideways to the Americans to be the new neutral custodians of peace then nature will take its course to the realisation that one Ireland is the future, that’s of course hoping the Brits don’t have their usual mental breakdown and behave really stupidly

      • Capella says:

        They’re sowing every sign of behaving very stupidly if Liz Truss and David Frost are any indication. Telegraph is behind a paywall but Guardian tells the story.

        UK should not fear EU trade war, says Frost as he backs ripping up protocol
        Former Brexit minister says UK ‘cannot be defeated’ by Brussels in provocative Telegraph column

        https://archive.ph/GKAKQ

        • Capella says:

          sowing = showing 🙂

        • Dr Jim says:

          If the UK of England believe they might lose ten bobs worth of trade in a feud with the EU in the current political climate (Scotland) then Northern Ireland will be the sacrifice they’ll have to make for the sake of blah de blah blah, but they’ll bluff noisily for half an hour before reverting to what’s probably always been plan A and sod the DUP whom they don’t need don’t want and can’t stand anyway, unfortunately Scotland will be different, we’re worth a hell of a lot of ££££££££s

        • grizebard says:

          They’re beginning to sound more and more like Russia. Empty bluster over the frailing edges of a faded, shrivelled empire.

          • Legerwood says:

            Well I suppose you could say that they, BJ & Co, have been well paid by Russia so hardly surprising if they sound more and more like Russia

  22. Dr Jim says:

    “There’ll be no border in the Irish sea” Boris Johnson must’ve loudly stated that position a 100 times on TV and radio “There’ll be no checks whatsoever on goods between GB and NI” he said at least another 100 times
    Boris buffoon Johnson signed the Brexit deal and blithely lied to every person in the British Isles the EU and anybody else who’d listen on TV print and radio because in Boris world it mattered not a jot because all would be hunky dunky

    How do you know when Boris Johnson is lying? every time he opens his mouth and the DUP the Tories Labour and uncle Tom Cobley and all knew it

    • Alex Clark says:

      Johnson the great wins pontificates on the non-border down the Irish Sea because he’s the prime Minister.

      “There will not be tarriffs or checks on goods coming from GB to NI…

      And the great thing that’s been misunderstood about this is there will not be checks…

      There will not be checks and I speak as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and a passionate Unionist…

      There will not be checks on goods going from Northern Ireland to Great Britain because we’re the government of the United Kingdom and we will not institute or implement or enact such checks…

      And the idea that Tato crisps from Tandragee Castle are going to be [unclear] is just nonsense…

      So, actually Northern Ireland has got a great deal…

      It’s got a great deal…

      You keep free movement, you keep access to the single market…

      But you also have, as it says in the deal unfettered access to GB…

      We can also come out and do free trade deals, so as I said, the only reason the gave us that deal, by the way was…

      because at the back of their minds they were still worried that we would come out without a deal…

      And they fell for all that bullshit.

      • Dr Jim says:

        The great English public are not a great judge of great English character

        Or then again perhaps they are, because they keep doing it

      • grizebard says:

        “There will not be checks on goods going from Northern Ireland to Great Britain”

        Well, Bojo has free choice for goods going in that direction, I suppose, so that is true enough as far as it goes. He has also chosen to defer the tariffs he was soon to impose on goods coming from the EU in general, because the shameless dissembler realised that the additional cost to already-stressed ordinary folk of this piece of wilful self-harm, a direct consequence of Tory Brexitomania, would reveal one of his most persistent reality-field distortions, and painfully expose it as the sham that it always has been.

        As for goods travelling in the opposite direction, from GB to NI, there he has a whole other problem entirely. Not exactly “oven-ready”. Not even half-baked. And according to an untried recipe of the moronic DUP and his feckless party’s own devising.

        • Alex Clark says:

          He was very clear though in the video around the 27-sec mark.

          “There will not be tariffs or checks on goods coming from GB to NI…that are not going on to Ireland. That’s the whole point,”

          Little white lie there and the reason that the DUP and UK government are threatening to unilaterally withdraw from the protocol part of the EU deal and in the process threaten the GFA.

          The claim now is that when they signed the deal, the possibility was there under article 16 to redefine the agreement and change it if it wasn’t seen to working properly (try and define that), or that they never really knew what they signed up to but it certainly was not a border down the Irish Sea.

          He lied to the DUP and people of Northern Ireland as well as the rest of the UK to get his deal through. He lied to everyone as he always does and now he lies to try and unravel the deal he agreed to. The man is not worthy of any position of authority, he’s a charlatan and complete waster not worthy of the office he holds.

    • Alex Clark says:

      This is no way for a Prime Minster to behave, what a minter for those that voted for him.

  23. yesindyref2 says:

    Onywise, someone has to do it.

    I love the rhetoric, but of course the Queen, who is Commander in chief of the British Armed Forces, a position her successor will hold, and the person all those who serve in the armed forces swear loyalty to (not BoJo, not the Gubmint), appointed Charles as the honorary top high heidjin of all the forces a few years back. So he’s Admiral of the Fleet, Field Marshal and Marshal of the Royal Air Force.

    Did he earn that in any way, apart from being the Queen’s son and successor? Well, he did serve for a few years, and ended his RN gig in charge of a minesweeper. Some of his medals are service medals – you don’t have to be in comabt to serve, and some awarded by the likes of Canada.

    Not everyone who serves, serves in combat, luckily, but they do serve and deserve whatever medals are appropriate for their service. For some, like the Arctic convoy veterans, recognition comes very late due to such as the Cold War – a delay successive UK Governments should be completely ashamed of.

    YIR2, Bathtub Admiral of the Fleet (5 star)

    • grizebard says:

      “[…] but they do serve and deserve whatever medals are appropriate for their service” Fair enough, as far as it goes. The boys earned genuine ones, no doubt about that, William for peacetime service flying air-sea rescue choppers. Good for them. But what peacetime service exactly could possibly produce such an ample row of shiny gongs for Pa himself? I fail to be convinced. All of them carry “self-minted” Jubilee ones of one kind or another. And those from the likes of Canada, specially minted grace-and-favour ones just, well, for existing? One of the compensatory perks of being nominal 2-I/C of a lost empire?

  24. yesindyref2 says:

    The alternative might be to see BoJo, Rees-Mogg, Gove et al, all sitting in the HoC with admirals’ uniforms and chests full of medals, expecting the lower orders (back-benchers) to salute them [1]. A soul-destroying thought.

    [1} no, not that way, it could get you the firing squad!

  25. Bob Lamont says:

    Aye, indeed a pantomime, one which always reminds me of “The Mouse that Roared”.

    Whilst the UK’s version of the Duchy of Grand Fenwick declared war on almost everyone, the Welsh government had confirmed moving toward proportional representation, the DUP were setting the stage to scupper Stormont, as stark a contrast as any of what democracy means in different parts of the United Queendom.

  26. Capella says:

    Boris & Co make an even bigger mess of international relations – at our expense as always:

    Boris Johnson’s Northern Ireland Protocol threat a ‘further hammer blow’ to businesses

    The SNP described Tory threats to scrap the trade deal as a “further hammer blow” to thousands of Scottish businesses that rely on exports to the EU and are recovering from the pandemic. Exports to European countries are worth £16.4bn to the Scottish economy and the SNP has warned that a trade war with the EU would put Scotland’s world-class produce at risk.

    https://archive.ph/xHXYS

  27. Capella says:

    I can’t believe I’m reading this – “UK Efficiency Minister Jacob Rees-Mogg” 😱

    Scots could be those ‘hit hardest by civil service job cuts’

    Deputy Westminster Leader Kirsten Oswald has branded the proposals to cut up to 90,000 jobs – or one in five – as “detached from reality”. The Prime Minister is understood to have told ministers on Thursday that the service should be slashed by a fifth, as he moved to free up cash for measures to ease the cost-of-living crisis with possible tax cuts.

    And the MP has claimed Scotland could bear the brunt of the move given that more than 6000 reserved civil service jobs have been cut since 2011 – equating to 20% of the workforce – at a rate of nearly double the UK average of 11%.

    https://archive.ph/WgRUr

    • My post, yestreday ,Capella.
      Thatcher and Blair are back

      Well, we are now in full blown Thatcherism.
      Rees Mogg should have donned a blonde Maggie wig and wore a blue dress with a ‘Diana’ ruff collar and dangled a handbag from his limp arm in preparation for today’s BBC Brexit run through.
      Lord Snooty was clearly nervous, gulping and hesitant, as the female anchor administered a matronly scolding on the Double Barrelled Jacob for being a very naughty boy indeed.

      He was put across Nanny’s knee and given a right good spanking.

      The 100 fines now recorded at No 10 A-Go-Go was February’s news, JRM declared,pooh poohing the notion that we the public, were not over it, nothing to see here, move on.
      Naga (?) was not for moving on. Naughty boy.

      Then Ross, oh sorry, Rees-Mogg was asked about cutting the civil service by 20%, 90.000 jobs, because, he argued, Covid and Brexit are over…

      His briefing for this segment must have been provided by a 70 year old SPAD, or sourced on a quick rummage in David Torrance’s Thatcher files in the subterranean HoC library.

      Rees-Mogg, clearly poorly briefed and therefore laughingly ill prepared, rabbited on about ‘efficiencies and savings’ like it was 1982.

      Consultant speak, which spawned such gems as ‘Human Resources’, to replace Personnel Departments, (staff being reduced to the cold dead status of a resource. like paper clips, or pens).

      Thatcher’s Consultants butchered Public Service, sacking tens of thousands, but declaring that the cuts in jobs were through ‘efficiencies’ and subsequent ‘savings’.

      Remember these little gems from the mouth of Thatcher?

      ‘There is no such thing as society, only individuals.’
      ‘Public bad, private good’.

      Thatcher’s mantra, and the brutal attack on society, was encapsulated in the cold unmistakeable instruction to all serving the public:

      ” Do more (work), with the same (money),or, the same (work) with less (money)’ .

      ‘Savings’ (cuts) were to be ‘achieved’ ( forced on staff who survived the cuts) through ‘efficiencies’ (impossible workloads forced on a fewer staff ).

      Bought in consultants were paid literally billions to destroy society.

      Newspeak, Consulant speak, call it what you like.

      The Blue Tories, and Blair’s Red Tories, hated a social democratic model of society, where we invest in public institutions, health, education, policing, welfare. libraries, swimming baths, sports and recreation, and such.

      Do the same with less money, or do less with the same money.
      Remember Brown’s PFI/PPP ‘fiascos’?

      So this was Rees-Mogg’s stammering floundering message today.
      We’ cutting public service by 20%. Suck it up, plebs.

      Remember Yellow Tory Danny Alexander achieving efficiencies and Austerity savings by sacking 500,000 public servants back in 2010?

      90.000 are to be sacked, and they think that they’ll get away with it?
      It was referred to as ‘through natural wastage’ in Thatcher’s dayRetirements, deaths in service, folk leaving, but none replaced.
      Those left will be expected to divvy up the work of the ex-colleague..for the same money, same hours. Aye, right.

      I’m sure that Glenn Campbell will be interviewing Union Jack or Dross tonight, over the QE Government Building in Edinburgh shedding 600 staff even before they find 3000 to put in England’s White Elephant Stockade in Edinburgh.

      England has lost it. They voted them in to keep the Furriners out.
      There will be fewer hospitals, schools, and dentists, post Brexit..even fewer now that the Oligarchy has spoken.
      Come on Dross, tell us why this is all a ‘good thing’.

  28. This is a good short summary of the politics behind the protocol from the UK in a changing europe site.

    As you’d expect, the problem was always the British nationalists opposing peace (DUP campaigned against the GFA as they wanted to continue persecuting Irish people like the good old says of the troubles), with Johnson lying to everyone at every turn, telling each side what they wanted to hear in direct contradiction to what he’d just told the other.

    https://ukandeu.ac.uk/theresa-may-speaks-the-truth-on-the-northern-ireland-protocol/

    The week’s biggest political news concerns ministers’ threats to legislate unilaterally to disapply parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol. This follows Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) refusal to re-enter government in Northern Ireland following last week’s elections unless the Protocol is changed, preventing a Northern Ireland Executive from forming. Their complaint centres around the ‘border down the Irish Sea’, causing goods checks between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

    This situation is very serious, and potentially very damaging: EU threats to suspend the entire Brexit Trade and Cooperation Agreement carry major economic risks, and there are major risks to the UK’s international reputation, and to tensions inside Northern Ireland.

    In Tuesday’s Queen’s speech debate, former Prime Minister Theresa May emphasised that legislation in breach of the Protocol would be a mistake, and reminded the Prime Minister that:

    ‘I put a deal before the House that met the requirements of the Good Friday agreement and enabled us not to have a border down the Irish sea or between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Sadly, the Democratic Unionist party and others across the House chose to reject that.’

    These were sharp words, but distinctly measured given what May could have said. What she omitted, though many present will have understood, was that Boris Johnson was among the ‘others across the House’ who voted to reject her deal, at least on the first two occasions that it was put.

    Given the seriousness of the situation, the background deserves laying out…

    In the end, PM Johnson backed the protocol deal of course. However, typical English Tory arrogance saw the clause added that Stormont could vote to reject the protocol in due course; something the brexiters assumed would happen because of historic British dominance there. But the people of NI – who backed being in the EU – had other ideas and they made that clear in 2017 by bringing to an end unionist majorities (by a single seat), then saying the same in no uncertain terms (58.3% pro-protocol) the other week.

    • Cannae help but feel that if there was a snap UKGE, the DUP’s Donaldson might have wished he’d stayed an MLA rather than abandoned NI for the English palace on the Thames where they don’t really want him as he’s not English.

      If people in NI voted in a UK election like they just did for Stormont, the DUP could lose to SF and Alliance, with even Donaldson losing his seat.

  29. I am awaiting Alba saying this guy has made a principled decision and if he had won his seat, he shouldn’t have had to step down and hold a by-election.

    https://archive.ph/T38sO

    Kamran Butt: Most successful Alba election candidate defects to SNP

    THE most successful Alba candidate in Scotland’s council elections has defected to the SNP.

    Kamran Butt, who ran for Alex Salmond’s party in Glasgow’s Southside Central ward, was welcomed to the SNP by Scots Asians For Independence (SAFI) on Friday.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Strange how the media use the word *defected* when how can an unelected person defect to another party, surely all that Mr Butt has done is to join the SNP as an ordinary member the same as over 100, 000 other folk

      However, this goes to character and what he’s done to the supporters of the Alba party that some of their members did the other way round, Mr Butt used Alba as his political vehicle raised his profile lost an election then jumped ship as quickly as nipping into the bookies betting on every horse with other folks money then looking for praise for backing the winner, because there will be many SNP voters who will remember every word Mr Butt said against the SNP and the FM during the time he campaigned for the Alba party that’s now all been a Dallas Bobbie Ewing shower scene mistake, and now following that bad Alba nightmare he’s realised that Nicola Sturgeon is wonderful and everything’s all hunky dunky now

      Moral character Mr Butt, moral character, but it appears that Mr Butt has little of it, well perhaps he is quite a *character* but I would suggest any hope he may harbour for future candidate selection may see Mr Butt disappointed, I for one certainly hope so

  30. Hamish100 says:

    I think carpetbagger would be my take on it. This also happened to the snp as soon as they were elected into power. Some folk suddenly became Independent minded. Too many weaved their way into positions to massage their careers. Too many in the snp hierarchy were taken in by their flattery. If labour had been in power the same people would jump just as easy. Labour found that to their cost with the tories infiltrating their ranks when they couldn’t get elected under that banner.

  31. Hamish100 says:

    Dr Jim,

    What are you doing upsetting Independista in scotia? In fairness I think he is about 14 but in SGP he states “ It is not the marches that harm independence it is the WGD site and I will ignore Jimbo and his sour comments about the marches and will continue to attend.”
    Go and kiss and make up for goodness sake! Lol

    • Dr Jim says:

      My understanding of the identity of this nitwit is that he was a nuisance on WOS but under a different name at that time, and remember that was a site that tolerated pretty much anybody but eventually even Stuart Campbell banned him contributing further as a pest and complete embarrassment, but of course it’s not for me to say how any site or the use of it’s moderation should conduct itself but on having a quick look following your comment perhaps if he did not comment on that particular site as frequently as he does the site itself might be bereft of commentators altogether rendering it even less entertaining and pointless since it became WOS Juniors

      Now we know he can’t help himself so he’ll repeat every *other* word of this, not all though because I noticed he does like to invent his own narrative and insert it into much of what others have not said

      Free speech and all that though, even though sometimes it comes from the angry and mindless

  32. On the unfolding Northern Ireland UK constitutional crisis… There is an actual route around the British political wing of the UVF trying to shut down democracy because they lost. Parties can change designation (e.g. the SDLP become neutral) and that could yield a legal pro-protocol government with unionists unable to stop it and confined to the opposition.

    And neutral does not me opposed to border poll; just not advocating Yes or No to reunification.

  33. Hamish100 says:

    Do we have a list yet of how many Tory / labour/ Lib Dem / OO are in partnership to keep the SNP councils out?

  34. Welsh_Siôn says:

    You’re getting noticed down here) — as if you weren’t before 😉

    https://nation.cymru/news/independence-supporters-march-through-glasgow/

    Independence supporters march through Glasgow

    14 May 2022 1 minute Read

    Independence supporters have taken to the streets of Glasgow for the latest in a series of marches.

    Organisers All Under One Banner claimed that some 5,000 people had taken part in its latest demonstration, which saw campaigners walk from Kelvingrove Park to George Square in the city centre.

    Afterwards they tweeted that the “Yes movement is growing in strength and taking to the streets for independence now”.

    […]

  35. Hamish100 says:

    So both on Scottish Television and bbc Scotland we have to endure a boring English football match imposed on us as being the best in the world.

    STV and Bbc Scotland drop the pretence of being Scottish.

    • It’s like Russia broadcasting their international matches in Ukraine, while making the Ukrainians pay for it.

    • Bow Down To Your Imperial Masters, Hamish.
      It’s called ‘hegemony’.
      WE are force fed this England Uber Alles every day.
      And leading this splurge of Britishness in the Scottish Dead Tree Scrolls and BBC’s Stockade on the Clyde.
      What will it take for at least one hack or TV anchor to break ranks, and quit very publicly?
      Does Glenn Campbell realise what an absolute chookie he looks as he delivers his 200th ‘ferry fiasco’ nonsense?
      Muriel Gray is reported to work only two days a week for her London Masters. And she’s the Boss of Jock BBC.
      Heading up the Northern Colony branch now only requires two days a week input?
      A sign of the times? Is BBC Scotland#s budget about to be cut by 60%?
      We can but hope.
      When the last helicopter takes off from the roof of Plantation House….

  36. dakk says:

    The future king billy of england being booed by english football fans is surely a portender of trouble ahead for the monarchy and a sign all is not well with the people of england.

    William’s body language suggests to me they think it’s all over.

  37. yesindyref2 says:

    The rally yesterday in Glasgow, with AUOB saying this before:

    “Make sure to attend this national demonstration which will empower the extra-parliamentary movement, express our defiance of Westminster rule and demand for action in the Scottish Parliament. Be there”. And it’s “defending the NHS”, and independence is a “national health emergency”. And banners such as “Defend our NHS”.

    It’s confusing messaging, and not everyone agrees with “demand for action in the Scottish Parliament”, some – many – are waiting to see what happens. And “defiance of Westminster” is, quite frankly, pathetic.

    They get hundreds because of this, the last march was something to do with poverty, then there’s one about nuclear weapons. It’s mixed messages. And looking at the pictures in the National, a few pictures, and “Independence” is not in any single one of them. Some YES and an Aye, but to what? The NHS?

    The only message should be: “Independence”. When do we want it? “Now”.

  38. Hamish100 says:

    Agree.
    Seems to me some hijacking of messaging which dilutes the independence messages.
    Since the Save the NHS was headline was used where was the RCN, UNITE, UNISON, BMA and the other health unions? No doubt they didn’t get involved because of the independence message. Care should be taken that such marches don’t just become a recruiting banner for the Socialist Worker or such like.

    • That looks ominous for the subsidy junkie Windsors.

      TBH, the end of the Queen’s reign seems to be pretty much upon us, what with Charlie taking over increasingly.

      However the poll, by the British Future thinktank, found that only 45% in Scotland said they wanted to retain the monarchy – with 36% saying the end of the Queen’s reign would be the right moment to move to a republic. Some 19% either rejected the choice, or said they didn’t know.

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      As always, the Guardian and the other MSM tend to ignore us.

      Here’s the findings from Cymru.

      https://nation.cymru/news/almost-a-quarter-in-wales-think-monarchy-should-end-with-the-queen-poll-suggests/

      Almost a quarter in Wales think monarchy should end with the Queen, poll suggests

      15 May 2022 2 minute Read

      Spoiler Alert: Contains image of Jug Ears.

      Almost a quarter of people in Wales think that the monarchy should end with the Queen, a new survey has suggested.

      The poll by the think tank British Future found that with don’t knows removed 23% in Wales thought the monarchy should end at the end of the Queen’s reign.

      […]

  39. Iain says:

    Very sad that the queen was unable to attend the event due to mobility issues. Delighted she was back on her feet a couple of days later in chipper form prancing around at the Windsor Horse Show.
    Priorities.

  40. Yougov UK Scots subsample

    In the event that the Queen were to become too ill to regularly carry out royal duties or appear in public, then do you think she should remain monarch, or should she retire and let the throne pass to her heirs?
    44% She should retire and step down from the throne
    36% She should remain Queen, even if other members of the Royal family carry out some of her duties
    20% DK

    When the time comes, do you think Prince Charles will or will not make a good King?
    36% Will not make a good king
    27% Will make a good king
    37% Not sure

    • Iain says:

      When Lazy Lizzy kick the bucket, there should be an X Factor style competition where the public vote for the subsidy junkey they want to take her place.
      I nominate Harry Hewitt, even though he’s not related to her

  41. Hamish100 says:

    So bbc attacking the Scots for being racist. In the middle of an inquiry they bring in the lawyer Anwar and the victims family member to discuss.

    Surely the inquiry should finish before any such move.

    Links with the Floyd killing in the USA.

    Disgraceful journalism in my view.

    • In all such cases of Andy Murraying, I’d ask how do we know the perpetrators were Scots? Maybe they were British. What did they state in the census? Are they pro-union or pro-indy?

      There are a decent few racist political parties / organisations operating in Scotland, but as far as I know, none are Scottish, but instead they are British/English.

  42. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Calling UK a ‘union’ encourages nationalists, Conservative think tank founded by Thatcher says

    14 May 2022 2 minutes Read

    A British nationalist think tank has said that Conservatives should stop referring to the UK as a ‘union’ because it encourages nationalists who want to break it up.

    The Bruges Group, whose founding president was former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, said that it was committed to putting forward the ‘intellectual’ case for the UK severing ties with the European Union.

    But calling the UK a ‘union’ could itself encourage nationalists in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland to break away, they said.

    “It is unhelpful to normalise separatist terminology,” they said. “If we accept their premise that the United Kingdom is a union, the implication is that it can be dissolved.

    “The United Kingdom is a country, whole and entire.

    […]

    https://nation.cymru/news/calling-uk-a-union-encourages-nationalists-conservative-think-tank-founded-by-thatcher-says/

    It ain’t no union, anyways, is it, guv?

  43. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    UK came second in Eurovision song contest…..which in UK speak means that they actually WON…..

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      Of course they won it.

      Can’t you see it was ‘UK-reign’ who won?

      😉

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Ha Ha…well played…..was the UK entry a version of ‘It’s Reigning Men’…..Hallelujah.

        Which ties nicely into below :

        See yon Prince William was booed at the Liverpool game….maybe he needs to try and save his own a*s before trying to save his (non) Union……Hallelujah…..I say Prince William but many prefer to call him Prince Andrew’s NEPHEW……

  44. Clydebuilt says:

    Pretend we like them. . . Don’t give them Money

    9am News this morning

    BBC Radio 5 David Wallace Lockhart

    BBC Radio 4 Nick Eardley

    Then there’s Laura Bicker recently in Ukraine

    on ITV Debi Edwards (China correspondent) & Peter Smith (constitution )

  45. Hamish100 says:

    Linsey Bewes bbc Scotland spends her time promoting the Labour Party. I suppose next to the tories it’s unionisms best hand.

    BBC well known ferry building firm knows all! rising poverty linked in. ScotRail strikes, no drivers— all snp. Let’s forget about Pfi, Edinburgh trams, Holyrood Parliament.

    Selective bias. How much public money is being spent to rebuild the School of Art? If only the bbc knew somebody they could give the inside track on?

  46. Capella says:

    The long read in The National today. Prof Gregor Gall reviews a new book from the Jimmy Reid Foundation. “A New Scotland: Building An Equal, Fair And Sustainable Society”.

    A New Scotland: Can the nation lay down a vision of a new era?

    WAY back in 1975, when a young Gordon Brown believed in social democracy, he edited what became the influential Red Paper on Scotland. Brown was elected as rector of the University of Edinburgh in 1972 and it was through this office that he then edited the Red Paper. On an array of matters, the Red Paper set out an alternative, radical and progressive vision for society in Scotland.

    Some 20 years on, Brown had his opportunity as chancellor and then prime minister under four ­Labour governments between 1997 and 2010 to carry that vision forward into practice. He chose not to do so.

    https://archive.ph/FLowI

  47. Capella says:

    This may seem a “fringe” issue 🙂 but in 2014, when the Edinburgh Festival declined to feature any productions which dealt with the 300 year union, which was the talk of the steamie in August 2014, I tried to find out who actually made these decisions. The EF had never had a home grown Festival Director. In 2014 it was a New Zealander who was directing IIRC. But who appointed the director? Who serves on the Board? That information was impossible to find at the time.

    Unite Scotland has ‘no faith’ Edinburgh Fringe funding will reach ‘decent’ employers

    Announced earlier this week, the Scottish Government will provide £1,580,000 in “resilience funding” to the Fringe Society to help support the festival’s recovery from the Covid pandemic, along with additional cash injections of £250,000 and £270,000 respectively for the International Festival and the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

    The new financial support follows lobbying from the Fringe Society, which oversees the annual event’s administration and suffered a 100% cut in its direct Creative Scotland funding in 2018.

    https://archive.ph/xokX4

  48. davetewart says:

    Reports in the herald on ferries.
    No mention of the 6 frigates that the Americans are scrapping due to hull cracks, the ships are les than 6 years old and pushed as high tech and 40+ kts top speed, now deemed unfit for service, they have a large proportion of Aluminium use in their superstructure.
    New technology on engine plant that is giving problems as well.

    Anybody remember that the QE2 had turbine problems?

  49. davetewart says:

    My father worked for John Brown Engineering on the building of the turbines.

    Wee stories of modern times, Rolls Royce went bust on the RB211 engine job.

    Rolls Royce last year was still fixing problems on the Trent engine.
    Norwegian Airlines could not fly their aircraft fitted with the engine, same engine used on the aircraft carriers sans aircraft, oil consumption problem.

    How about the DWP computer that the chancer is using as an excuse for not raising benefit?, appears it can speak, NO, but can’t multiply.

    We wil eventually get the sory of the ferries but not the Mone PPE contract.
    Teh house of common fools says that the booing of the royal boy was an insult, he says the FA should find and ban the people using rude handsignals.

    • Dr Jim says:

      England, the land of simultaneous Monarchy democracy rule of law and freedom of speech wants to ban or arrest anybody who protests or doesn’t obey, then prevent anyone else from going there under the impression that those *principles* are real

      One wonders how the people of England after all these years haven’t worked out they don’t really live in this England as advertised by the governments who run it

  50. I’m not sure if Sheku Bayoh’s sister appreciates that to accuse an entire people / country of having a negative trait (e.g. racism) without supporting evidence is the very definition of racism.

    While she was somewhat reluctantly into her comment by the English/British BBC copying Russia’s ‘The Ukrainians are racists’ approach and applying it to Scotland, it makes her look bad, particularly as we’ve not even seen any evidence that the racism she/her brother apparently suffered actually came from Scottish people.

    1/4 of the population in Scotland is British first and foremost, and it would be expected that any racists in the police ranks are likely British identifying, as pretty much all racist groups / political parties in Scotland are. A centre-left, pro-indy, pro-EU liberal voting racist would certainly be something of an oddity, so we can be pretty sure racists within our borders don’t vote SNP/Green!

    And of course Scots themselves – as a minority people in the UK – regularly suffer racist abuse from a proportion of the majority British / English; the recent example of Billy Kay being a case in point.

    • Dr Jim says:

      There’s always been the falsely propagandised misconception that only white people can be racist which is total balderdash invented by folks with agenda vehicles to drive
      Abuse of person since time began has always been perpetrated by the powerful on the weaker or less affluent regardless of colour or creed

      It’s the modern day world however and the faux PC media feed off the contrived public outrage like vampires on the narrative

    • Yes, all peoples are perfectly capable of racism; it’s what causes ethnic conflicts and these readily occur between people of the ‘same’ skin colour but different ethnicity, be that in the Balkans or Rwanda.

      The fact that the BBC attributes sectarian bigotry / racism clearly originating from British people in Scotland to ‘Scots’ is deeply insidious racism. But then the people running the BBC, including BBC Scotland, are not Scottish, but British, so for them it is fine to project the nastiness of some in their own community onto the minority (in the UK) Scots.

  51. Danny Martin says:

    So you didn’t like it then? Me neither.

  52. Hamish100 says:

    Is it just me getting fed up of the litter and disturbances from so called old-firm football fans taking over our streets. Time the police said events must be in the stadiums.
    This anti-social behaviour totally disregards the rest of public going about their normal life.
    Buck fast shares must be on the up. My heart sinks for the upcoming week.
    Police Scotland stop turning the blind eye.

    • No it’s not just you, Hamish. Yesterday we had Brian Wilson’s green knuckledraggers rampaging through Glasgow. The Tron had to text theatregoers that last night’s performance was cancelled as they could not guarantee the safety of ticket holders due to the threat of idiots intent on causing mayhem and danger to my fellow citizens; described as usual in the Blahs as ‘supporters’, ‘celebrating’ their team’s victory.
      They are scum, endomorphs, who take to our streets and don’t give a damn about the rest of us…Where’s Jim Kelly now? They were lauded in the Blahs and on telly for quashing the OBFM legislation? Kevin McKenna berated us normal folk for ‘criminalising’ the high spirited perfectly understandable elation of this lot.
      Of course we have Wednesday night to look forward to. The Blue troglodytes take to the road and will invade poor Seville, while many more will remain behind, once more to take to the streets when the full time whistle blows and swarm through Glasgow (and nearby boroughs) in darkness, doubtless to rip up street furniture, piss or worse in closes and front gardens, and assault any who dare get in their way or attempt to maintain public order.
      Next week end, we, the people will have to go through it all again, when Hearts come to town to take on the Mighty True Blue Sons of William, the Loyalists, the Britons Ranjurs…

      And the Hacks and the Broadcasters turn a blind eye, put it all down to ‘natural’ celebrations…
      These criminals are tens of thousands strong…it suits the Brit Cause to use any excuse to portray Scotland as a lawless, sectarian, bigoted, adjunct of England, the Rogue State of Europe.

      My advice to my fellow Glaswegians. Stay in, lock and bolt your doors, and hope for the best.
      The ‘Old Firm’s’ dog soldiers, are mobs, inteent on intimidation and vilolence. Kerching.
      Brian Wilson is of course on Sellick’s Board…these are his foot soldiers who ran riot yesterday.
      God help the citizens of Seville
      I predict a riot.

      • Alex Clark says:

        This was in Hackney yesterday after an attempted immigration raid.

        More on the story here.

        https://www.thelondoneconomic.com/news/watch-dalston-immigration-raids-police-brutality-met-police-video-322609/

      • Welsh_Siôn says:

        The Observer ‘glorify’ a previous European invasion by the blue noses in today’s paper:

        Camp Nou glory: remembering Rangers’ 1972 European triumph

        https://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2022/may/15/camp-nou-glory-remembering-rangers-1972-european-triumph

        Rangers take on Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League final on Wednesday, an extraordinary achievement for a club in administration 10 years ago. This chance of glory is particularly remarkable given Rangers have triumphed in Europe on one previous occasion.

        Fifty years ago this month, they lifted the European Cup Winners’ Cup in Barcelona after the most torrid, draining – and violent – football match I have attended. I fervently hope victory can be repeated but not, I pray, in similar circumstances.

        […]

        • Thanks for this.
          “Rangers were given a two-year European ban – later reduced to one year – because of their fans’ behaviour. Was it deserved? Well, there was certainly some drunkenness but when we arrived the atmosphere in the city had been a happy carnival one. And there were no pitched battles with rival fans because there were none there to fight with. It was the sudden, panic-stricken actions of the police that was the main cause of the battle and that certainly did not justify a ban that meant Rangers could not defend the trophy they had played their hearts out to win.”

          It was all the Polis’ fault. Aye, right.

          All those poor innocent drunks who didn’t have Commies to fight.

          I rest my case.

  53. Alex Clark says:

    Boris Johnson told Sophy Ridge in a 2019 interview that there would be no checks, no barriers and no forms of any kind for goods on the NI border for trade with the rUK.

    Now Kwasi Kwarteng being interviewed today by her blames everything on the EU and insists Boris Johnson was not lying when he said that.

  54. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Open question.

    Why is it that Sweden and Finland can seemingly just walk into membership of NATO (and are so encouraged to do so) without very little trouble – they won’t ‘be at the back of the queue’ – whilst it would take Cymru and Scotland years to (re)join the European Union?

    Asking for 8 million other inhabitants of this North Atlantic archipelago.

    • Capella says:

      They’re not in yet. Finland has a treaty with Russia which it will have to break, which will instigate a response since bringing US troops and nuclear weapons to the border of Russia threatens St Petersburg just across the bay. Welcome to WWIII.
      US arms manufacturers will make a killing as usual, though perhaps not live long enough to enjoy it.
      I wish I was joking.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        I’m not too fond of the idea, but perhaps a solution would be to have a DMZ (Demilitarised Zone) both sides of the border, say 12 miles each side. And similar for Ukraine.

        • Capella says:

          Karelia already exists as a buffer zone. Check out the speed of ICBMs. Russia has c 6,000, many hypersonic. Twelve miles is irrelevant.

          • yesindyref2 says:

            We’re talking about soldiers.

            The range of a land-based ICBM is anywhere up to and around 10,000 Miles. SLBMs at 5,000 or so.

            As I said, a DMZ could be a good idea, as at least it keeps soldiers from being able to fire at each other, by mistake of course, with bullets – or being able to exercise on the border and be able to cross it without further warning.

      • Welsh_Siôn says:

        I know that they’re not in – yet. 🙂

        But it won’t take them long to join the club, will it?

        That’s my main point.

        • Capella says:

          Well it depends how much confidence you have in the rule of law. Finland joined the Nazis in WWII and so were defeated by the Soviet Union in 1945, as was Nazi Germany. (It was a female Russian tank commander who captured the Reichstag – see The World at War).

          Finland then agreed to be neutral and co-exist with the USSR. When the USSR disbanded in 1990, a new treaty was signed which continued Finland’s neutral status. Now they want to abandon that treaty and ally with an organisation openly hostile to Russia. Why?

          • yesindyref2 says:

            Finland joined the Nazis in WWII and so were defeated by the Soviet Union in 1945,

            I was going to ignore this, but can’t let such distortion go by.

            Russia Invaded Finland in 1939. after Russia had signed a non-aggression pact with Germany. When Germany attacked Russia, Finland tried to use Germany to regain territory the Russians had taken..

            And Finland weren’t defeated by Russia in 1945, in fact they signed a treaty with Russia in 1944 and expelled the Germans – having during the war, given sanctuary to the Jews. Check out “Lapland War”.

            The Moscow Ministry of Propaganda is pumping out misinformation through its organ, TASS.

      • grizebard says:

        Tell all that second-hand scaremongering to the Finns, whose support for joining NATO soared from ~30% to ~75%. Given what’s just happened, it’s not exactly hard to understand why.

        The trouble with liars and bullies is that once their fakery and bluster is exposed, they deflate. Instead of handwringing at phantoms, what’s required here is sisu. A Finnish word. And the Finns have it in spades. It’s their call.

  55. Hamish100 says:

    Russia attacked and occupies Crimea and now part of Ukraine that’s why.
    Remember also USSR signed a peace pact with the Nazis while attacking Finland

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