That’s what democracy is all about

For the anti-independence parties it’s 2011 all over again. When then First Minister Alex Salmond announced the Scottish Government’s intention to hold an independence referendum following the SNP victory in the 2011 Scottish Parliament election, the Conservatives and Labour immediately denounced it.

Westminster would never allow a referendum, we were told, and in any case Labour and the Tories were quite certain that it was unlawful, divisive and unnecessary and the people of Scotland didn’t really want it anyway. In the months that followed there were threats that the referendum would be struck down by the courts, warnings about “wildcat” or “illegal” referendums, and the confident assertion that the British Government would slap an uppity Holyrood down. There was much talk in the media of whether Scotland would or would not be “allowed” to hold another referendum, a discussion which was underpinned by the unspoken and unchallenged assumption that Scotland could have no agency in determining its own fate. Scotland was but a supplicant begging Westminster for a ballot that was in Westminster’s sole power to give. Talk of “granting” a Section 30 order is a telling admission of how British nationalism really perceives Scotland’s place in what they like to tell us is a family of nations.  It’s a decidedly subordinate place.

There followed a game of brinkmanship between Holyrood and Westminster, until eventually, faced with the realisation that his government risked losing any input into the process, David Cameron agreed to a Section 30 order in order to maintain the political fiction that Westminster was still in control of the course of events. Ten years on and here we are again. Westminster is still desperate to maintain the political fiction that it is in control of the course of events.

It all sounds very familiar the second time around although now we have the added screech notes that the 2014 referendum was “supposed to be once in a generation” as though the campaign rhetoric of Alex Salmond represented a binding commitment – you might even say “Vow”, if it were not for the fact that that’s a word which triggers the heirs of Better Together – that binds the entirety of the Scottish nation for as long as it suits the Westminster parties, parties for whom the shelf life of an unkept promise is shorter than a five day old bottle of milk sitting out in direct sunshine, Viz. The Vow.

The British nationalist parties have learned nothing from their experience of ten years ago and still act as though it is a viable strategy to bully and threaten the people of Scotland and lecture us about how democracy is unlawful when it doesn’t suit the interests of British nationalism. This is not the way to sell the supposed benefits of Westminster rule to an increasingly dubious Scotland. “Stay with us Scotland so we can prevent you from having any say over your future,” is not exactly a winning slogan.

We are now a long way on from former leader of the Scottish Conservatives Ruth Davidson’s words of wisdom, well OK not so much wisdom as a statement of the bleedin’ obvious, back in 2007 at the end of that year’s Holyrood election which produced no majority in the Scottish Parliament for an independence referendum, and as the SNP was about to govern as a minority administration, the would be Saviour of the Union opined: “You don’t get a referendum for free, you have to earn it. So if the Greens and the SNP and the SSP, or any of the other parties who have declared an interest in independence, get it over the line and can make a coalition, make a majority, get the votes in the Parliament, then they’ll vote through a referendum. That’s what democracy is all about.”

Fifteen years later and the Conservatives appear to have forgotten what democracy is all about. Evidence from 2021 Scottish Election Study shows that the majority of people in Scotland – 61% – think that Holyrood has a mandate to deliver an independence referendum. The election was only a year ago but Ross and Sarwar seem to be hoping that we all have very short memories and don’t recall that the election was completely dominated by the issue of a second independence referendum. That election was effectively a referendum on a referendum and by the rules of democratic elections it was decisively settled in favour of those who want another referendum. We are no longer debating whether the people of Scotland want another referendum. That question has been answered. Attempts by Douglas Ross and Anas Sarwar to rehash their arguments from last year are merely the undemocratic complaints of sore losers.  The people of Scotland have decided that this is the time for another referendum.  It’s not a decision for the losers of last year’s election to make.

The fundamental issue here is that those who believe that a referendum and the question of Scottish independence can be halted in its tracks by legal means are committing a category error. The question of Scottish independence is a political question not a legal one, and as such it can only be settled through a political process, not through the courts. An appeal to the courts by opponents of independence can only ever provide a delaying tactic not a definitive solution.

The Scottish Government will shortly set out its plans on holding a lawful vote with or without Westminster “granting” Scotland something which is already inherently Scotland’s, the right of the people of this country to choose for themselves the form of government best suited to their needs. It may only be then that Westminster will realise that if it wishes to maintain the fiction that it is in control of events that it will cooperate in facilitating a referendum and that Westminster’s last best hope of preventing independence is not to show the people of Scotland that democracy in Scotland is impossible as long as Scotland remains a part of a Conservative dominated Westminster.

Indeed politically an appeal to the courts to block the referendum is a very dangerous road for them to go down, because it would provide definitive proof that they do not respect the democratic will of the people of Scotland and create the strong impression that they seek to hide from the ballot box because they are afraid of the answer that the electorate might give. If the courts try to block a referendum, the river of politics will simply find another course, one which flows all the stronger because of the attempt to dam it. And by that time the Conservatives and the Labour party will have lost any chance of influencing the process. The anti independence parties can either accept what democracy is all about or be swept away by democracy. The ball is in the court of the people of Scotland, not theirs.

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154 comments on “That’s what democracy is all about

  1. deelsdugs says:

    “Stay with us Scotland so we can prevent you from having any say over your future,” is not exactly a winning slogan.
    In a nutshell Paul. Brilliant 😁
    Glad to see the fire being stoked to a healthy glow.

  2. Dr Jim says:

    That’s the understanding of politics right there, perception is everything and is the reason why unionists howl screech and threaten in an effort to divert the voter from perceiving their own power in the hope they don’t use it

    Politicians work for us, we the people instruct them in what we require from them, then they implement those instructions on our behalf, not the other way round

    Too many people have forgotten the job of politicians and government

  3. Statgeek says:

    Whatever woes and fears they promised in 2014, many have been realised regardless, and they can’t threaten us with them twice.

    One thing investors can sink their teeth into. An independent Scotland, free of a Brexit Britain will have a better chance than a sinking Scotland, tied to the corpse of British political vanity.

  4. bringiton says:

    We should be telling the unionists that in an independent Scotland,should they get a democratic mandate to join England’s Union under the present conditions,we would not stand in their way.
    The 2014 referendum made it clear that the people of Scotland are sovereign in Scotland and not the Palace of Westminster.
    However,should England’s Tories succeed in dismantling Holyrood,it will be much more difficult for Scots to express their will.
    This intent must be exposed as part of our next campaign.

    • JP58 says:

      In theory an independent Scotland could vote in a Unionist majority but (and this is a rather big but(pardon pun)) any reunification would also require consent of RUK.
      Independence is like a divorce – it only takes 1 party to consent to do it.
      Reunification is like a marriage – both parties have got to consent to do it.
      One reason why no country that has become independent of UK has ever rejoined – that and the fact that the population quite like being independent especially when roof didn’t fall in as predicted by opponents.

  5. Welsh_Siôn says:

    I think we Welsh can be generous and share you this:

    Our voices will be heard!

    We’re still here!

  6. Hamish100 says:

    I see Sillars spouting his bile to Tom Gordon of the Herald saying there’s is no support for a referendum. Time he was chucked out of the snp so he can rejoin the Brexit Labour Party or form his own.
    Over 30 years since he got elected as deputy leader and has never forgiven that he wanted to lead. Wanted us to abstain for the Scottish Parliament vote I believe.
    Is there a pattern to this?

  7. Movy says:

    Great, as always. Thank you and keep well.

  8. Izzie says:

    One of the best articles you have written

  9. Capella says:

    Great article Paul. I’m reminded of the words of Canon Kenyon RIP, “We are the people and we say yes”.

  10. James Mills says:

    We Yessers are constantly rebuked by our Betters ( Together ) that the people of Scotland do not want another referendum ( regardless of the results of polls and elections ) .

    That being the case IF there was a referendum soon then NO would have a resounding victory .

    Why then do they not ”Bring it on ! ” and put these ‘separatists to the sword ? That would put their gas in a peep and shut them up for ‘a generation ‘ – wouldn’t it ?

  11. Tam the Bam says:

    Indy campaign question:

    Where is Derek Bateman?

    Can anyone shed some light?

  12. Angus says:

    I do worry that Westminster will try and manipulate the vote. i also think there’s an issue about the franchise. Who will be eligible to vote? We’ve had a flood of immigrants from the south. A few of whom may support independence.. but i suspect the vast majority wont. Was it true in 2014 that if we’d only counted the native born Scots vote then we would have had a (narrow?) yes majority.There should be a residency requirement, Those new immigrants would qualify to vote only if they’ve been domicile in Scotland for at least 3 or 5 years.

  13. Bob Lamont says:

    A perfectly timed revisit of history, some details of which I’d quite forgotten, so thank you for the memory jog, Scots really are trapped in their own “Groundhog Decade”.
    By coincidence, a video of Ruth Davidson’s “words of wisdom” resurfaced recently on Youtube
    Another prior example was from of all people, Maggie Thatcher, who opined a simple majority of SNP was all that was required.
    What on earth happened to democracy ?

    Of all the lies in circulation, the most blatant are “Scots don’t want a referendum” and a referendum being “illegal” – When “journalists” such as Glenn Campbell insist on repeating this in certain knowledge it is a lie, any shred of credibility the BBC in Scotland had is destroyed.

    Hence it is BT in trouble this time around, any illusions of impartiality in Scotland’s media is shot to pieces, what was once their advantage is now a millstone around their neck.
    For every lie recycled there is bitter memory of the last con which succeeded, the “safe pair of hands” in London is seen as the pickpocket he always was, but crucially all allusions to good governance is utterly destroyed.
    Indyref2 is going to be a very different campaign.

    In a discussion elsewhere, it was noted that it is not just a majority of Scots in favour of holding a referendum but majorities in England, Wales and NI – ie the entire UK electorate is in favour of a Scottish independence referendum, and should Scots choose to be independent, so be it.
    – Scotland is in the preposterous situation of our only opponents being the political classes and media, who insist on telling us they represent democracy but insist on a position contrary to their own electorate.

    • JP58 says:

      The view of the Scottish Parliament voted in by PR is the only democratic way of assessing whether Scottish people wish a referendum in life of parliament.
      Just ask people who deny this what other method there is for assessing wish of people in Scotland on this subject – they just don’t want a referendum and think their view is more important than their fellow citizens.

  14. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Keir Starmer’s spokesman repeatedly refuses to say that Labour would scrap the government’s plan to send refugees to Rwanda……

    Keir Starmer says he will make Brexit work.

    Keir Starmer’s shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves stated that Labour is now unashamedly ‘pro-business’ and committed to ‘fiscal discipline’.

    Keir Starmer, in way of a tribute to the Tories, has now also adopted the ‘Two flags either side of him to represent ‘British’ nationalism’ when he makes speeches.

    Keir Starmer welcomed a Tory MP into Labour while removing the whip from Labour MP and ex leader of his party Jeremy Corbyn.( Christian Wakeford’s ex Tory MP abysmal voting record includes supporting the recent £20-per-week cut to Universal Credit. The former Conservative MP has also expressed his pride in supporting the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts bill, which would further criminalise protests and restrict trade union rights. Wakeford, like many of the 2019-intake of Tory MPs, won in the so-called ‘Red Wall’ seats….obviously it was an easy decision for him, Wakeford, to move to NEW NEW Labour as obviously he must have felt that there is so little that divides both the party he was elected to represent, Tories, and his new adopted party i.e. Labour.

    Keir Starmer is , like the Tories, against the democratic right of people in Scotland to hold another independence referendum.

    Keir Starmer in 2021 asked for Nicola Sturgeon to resign over Alex Salmond but in SAME year did NOT ask for Boris Johnson to resign despite saying it “looks as though he was” breaking the law after a photo emerged of him, Johnson, taking part in an online Downing Street quiz with staff last December” (2020).

    Keir Starmer in December 2021 said it is his “patriotic duty” to back Boris Johnson ‘s Covid Plan B in a rare address to the nation.

    Keir Starmer also said It is the public’s “patriotic duty” to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee,

    The above is NOT an exhaustive list of Keir supporting the Tories, Boris and pledging his uber Bwitish patriotism and allegiance to royalty… where is the REAL opposition of the supposed official opposition party……seeing many peeps in England NOT willing to vote Labour because they are unable to discern what Labour represent, any distinction with Labour in policies and rhetoric from the current Tory party and the current leader being seen as weak and as a leader failing to oppose with strong arguments…also very much only ever coming out with a position based on public opinion and publicity via media….as in he is never brave enough to take the initiative he only responds to which way he sees the political wind is blowing….thus many voters in England cannot see him as a future PM….he is reactive always NEVER proactive ….a (Tory) follower NOT a leader.

    See we are still at the stage of questioning ‘What are Labour for’ ?…a summation we, in Scotland, have held for a long time via different Labour leaders thus seems clear why English people do NOT choose to elect them to govern in their UK since Blair…who himself proved to be a war criminal among other things and who was quoted as saying ” it is my job to build on some Thatcher Policies”..

    Sarwar is HIS, Starmer’s, man in Holyrood…..Leonard was ousted as he was Corbyn’s…..but , like Jackson Carlaw , Leonard was allowed, to save face, to state he resigned as leader of branch office.

  15. Capella says:

    Abbi Garton-Crosbie reports on further advantages in 10 comparator countries that we could benefit from introducing.

    The 70-page document, launched by the First Minister on Tuesday, set out a variety of indicators from wealth and poverty levels to productivity amongst economies and other factors such as the gender pay gap.

    READ MORE: Scottish independence referendum to be held in October 2023, Angus Robertson says

    But what else can the independence movement learn from our neighbours and how to argue for a progressive society which works for everyone?

    The National has taken a look into some of the stand-out policy areas from the 10 independent European nations which weren’t included in the prospectus.

  16. Capella says:

    Ferry link to Europe to reopen – wait till DRoss hears about this fiasco! has anyone told BBC Scotland?

    Scotland to Europe ferry link ‘to return in 2023’ amid post-Brexit interest

    A DIRECT ferry link between Scotland and mainland Europe is set to reopen early next year.

    The boat is expected to go from Rosyth, south of Dunfermline on the Firth of Forth, to Zeebrugge, on the coast of Belgium north of Bruges, in 2023.

    The route was last open to freight in 2018. At the time it was operated by DFDS, but a fire on board the Finlandia Seaways ship hastened the end as the company could not find a replacement and “lost all hope” of turning around losses.

    The ferry last carried passenger services in 2010, eight years after it first began sailing.

    It was Scotland’s only direct sea link to Europe – and in the wake of Brexit the interest in re-opening it has been building.

    • JoMax says:

      Used this ferry route a couple of times and it was great to be able to travel just two hundred miles from the north in around 4 hours to get a connection to the continent instead of having to drive even further south into England (and back on return) adding a couple more days on to the journey and using up valuable holiday time.

      Far better for freight as well. Time our country stopped allowing itself to be treated like a backwater or as Paul referred to it the other day ‘a Branch LIne’ which may or may not be entitled to ‘connections’ depending on the whim of politicians of a certain mindset.

  17. Dr Jim says:

    You know when Scotland becomes so important when GB news, a programme virtually nobody in Scotland watches unless wearing an unpleasant armband with their hand in the air reports on the Spectators Fraser Nelsons anti Scottish ranting , a newspaper virtually nobody in Scotland ever reads unless they have a mouth full of marbles wearing a straw boater but with that right hand pointing skyward

    GB news the British Nationalist equivalent of Attila the Huns morning reading material while viewing beheadings of his enemies, the news channel invented for Andrew Neil and his obsessional hatreds of everything not ultra right wing that became not right wing enough even for him, the Trump supporting hate fest of all things that even sound democratic

    Yes folks GB news who cannot manage to even mention the word Scotland without spitting in our direction has decided to join the campaign for our and our FMs destruction, bearing in mind this GB news as far as I’m aware has never used Scotlands FMs first name, she’s just a second name also spoken with spittle flecked fury

    So now you know how panicked they are when all they’ve really got up their sleeve is to squeal and complain to the voters in England, (because they’re the only folk who watch GB news), that the bad Scottish woman is talking about democracy and the rule of law instead of what England is used to which is a Prime Minister who continually breaks the law and denies democracy

    And we’re the baddies?

    Disclaimer: I only watched it so you don’t have to, and believe me, you don’t want to

  18. Capella says:

    Just heard that Priti Patel has approved the extradition of Julian Assange. Shameful. Yet another low for this truly abysmal UK government.

  19. Bruce MacDougall says:

    If I were Nicola Sturgeon, I wouldn’t ask for a Section 30, if queried by Westminster, I’d answer: We knew you would refuse, and then if offered one, I would say too late now our plans have been set. Really the less Westminster has to do with a referendum the better. For the next year it’s going to be a litany of lies from the Unionists. I just wish it could be done quicker.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      By Chris McCorkindale, Senior Lecturer in Public Law, University of Strathclyde and Aileen McHarg, Professor of Public Law and Human Rights, University of Durham:

      A state may become independent in one of two ways: either with the consent or at least acquiescence of the parent state, in accordance with its domestic constitutional requirements, or via a unilateral declaration of independence (UDI).

      However, as Scotland’s Right to Choose makes clear, a referendum that has a clear legal basis, agreed to between governments, that is regulated by law and consistent with democratic and rule of law values is the surest – perhaps the only – way to deliver a result that is fair, decisive, and accepted as legitimate at home and abroad.

      That’s the reason for the Section 30 – it’s easier and quicker.

    • Dr Jim says:

      The FM has to put them into the position of refusing an agreement in writing then they are the intransigent party leaving her and her government no other democratic option but to proceed without one so that later when or if the UK government did decide to initiate court action they can be seen as the aggressive side
      This way it puts Scotlands actions on the right side of the expectations of such bodies as the UN EU and ECHR who at the end of this are the people we want to be affiliated with

      A lot of people who will count later are watching what’s happening and they’re on Scotlands side as long as we maintain the moral democratic high ground

      As you rightly say, unfortunately we are going to suffer Westminster and the medias garbage for the next year and a bit, we’ve done it before and we’ll do it again, probably much better this time

    • A section 30 isn’t of course legally required for a referendum. All it did in 2014 was reduce the likelihood of a legal challenge.

      However, since an indyref changes nothing in law, I think any legal challenge would struggle. How can you legally challenge something that legally changes nothing? It’s like trying to challenge the right of Scots to walk to the village hall to put Xs on bits of card and place these in boxes or something. How can you argue they’re not allowed to do that?

      What you could try to challenge is whether the Scottish government have the ‘right’ to declare independence by UDI following a Yes vote, which would be a change in law. However, they’re not actually proposing to do that, just to ‘open negotiations’ on independence. Not only that, but they’d not be changing ‘union’ law, but only Scots law. The Scotland Act says the union is reserved to Westminster. Of course it is. No devolved parliament should sensibly have the right to change UK union law unilaterally, only laws within their own jurisdiction. Scottish independence does not affect English/Welsh/N. Irish law, only Scots law. Ergo it’s not a union matter. It’s just like brexit; that didn’t see the UK changing EU law all by itself; it just stopped being subject to EU law.

      I’ll also note that UDI is always successful unless the supranational state / union sends in troops to stop it, such as what Spain did with Catalonia.

      • Statgeek says:

        “It’s like trying to challenge the right of Scots to walk to the village hall to put Xs on bits of card and place these in boxes or something. How can you argue they’re not allowed to do that?”

        You don’t.

        Instead, you introduce ID cards for putting ‘X’s on bits of card, and prevent some Scots (and others across the UK) from being issued with one, by raising the criteria to something that suits your agenda.

        Never happen? Never is a very long time, and this government is good at changing the rules to suit. They can be introduced, and once in place and the electorate like them, the rules for application can be tweaked.

        • Tatu3 says:

          If that were to happen maybe the Scottish government could issue, for free, a voter’s ID card to everyone eligible to vote in Scotland. Doesn’t need to be fancy, just a basic card or something. That would scupper Johnson’s plan lol

      • Dr Jim says:

        Labours Lisa Nandy is on record as favouring the military option

        The wummin’s as mad as a hatter

      • grizebard says:

        “How can you legally challenge something that legally changes nothing?” Oh yes, that’s very deftly put. Best I’ve yet seen.

        The thing that changes irreversibly of course is the incontrovertible and universal public recognition that happens with a “yes” win. Just as it did with the advisory Brexit vote in England, a result that ever since has been trumpeted by the UKGov as an irreversible political fact.

        Which is incidentally why I say that for all the devil-in-detail niceties that must follow, we have our independence from the millisecond that a “yes” win is announced. And the Unionists know it, which is why they’re now so scared.

  20. yesindyref2 says:

    1. So basically speaking the franchise for the Referendum is already set and hot-airing it about the franchise is either a waste of time, a delaying tactic or even worse, a divisive manoevure by a unionist plant, as the Scottish Elections (Franchise and Representation) Act 2020 was:

    The Bill for this Act of the Scottish Parliament was passed by the Parliament on 20th February 2020 and received Royal Assent on 1st April 2020“.

    Nobody with a single functioning brain cell would want to delay Indy Ref 2 by wasting another 5 years on public consultations and putting a new Bill through Holyrood. Unless you’re a Unionist.

    2. The SNP received by far the most seats in the 2021 Holyrood Election, and with the Greens have a majority of seats in the Scottish Parliament.

    So basically speaking they have a mandate to hold a Referendum, and how they achieve it is up to them. If anyone wants to bellyache about “I don’t agree with the Section 30”, then stand for election or vent your wasted hot air and add to global warning while clutching your ruptured spleen. NURSE!

    3. Anything that can’t be changed now, like “what has the SNP done the last 8 years”, is either a waste of time, a distraction tactic or even worse, a divisive manoeuvre by a unionist plant.

    4. From elsewhere: “Now I don’t mean to sound negative.

    Well don’t then, spend your efforts and our time on something productive towards Indy Ref 2 in October 2023. What is the point of all this past belly-aching? There are people to be convinced to vote YES.

    5. “It’s the SNP’s fault support hasn’t risen from 44.3%”. I have news for you – it has. It’s sitting at 50% – 50% unless you’re either a disinformationing unionist, or stupid enough to believe unionists.

    And it wouldn’t be the SNP’s fault either, it’s yours for all your belly-aching which convinces nobody, but instead bores the hole off the undecideds and turns soft NOes – and soft YESses – into NO voters. So it’s your fault – or our fault to be properly inclusive.


  21. Alex Clark says:

    The Scottish Government did not request a Section 30 order for the 2014 referendum, it was, in fact, the UK government that wanted to use a Section 30 order to as they put it “remove any doubt as to the legality of a referendum.” Their argument was that the Union was a reserved matter and therefore beyond the competence of the Scottish government to pass the required legislation.

    This assertion was disputed by both lawyers and politicians, Alex Salmond being one who insisted that a referendum could be legislated for without a Section 30 order. Eventually, the SNP agreed to a Section 30 order but in turn, they were the ones who would choose the question and the date of the referendum.

    • Yes, the S30 in 2014 was very much the unionists trying to pretend that one was actually needed when it wasn’t really. However, what the Edinburgh Agreement did do, is put the onus on the UK government to accept the result if it was a yes; something that can never be forced on them.

      We could have every country in the world accept Scotland’s independence and England could still say it didn’t even with Scotland actually being independent. England still say it refuses to accept that, even if it does nothing to stop it.

      • grizebard says:

        And of course it was because Cameron & Co, fully expecting to win a binary choice, wanted a Section 30 to put the onus on the Scottish Government to accept the result if it was a “no”.

        (Which plan ultimately self-destructed due to Unionism’s near-total post-referendum reneging on all its assurances. Hence all this desperate pumped-up “once in a lifetime” whinging now.)

  22. Alex Clark says:

    In January 2012 Michael Moore, then the Scottish Secretary of State gave a statement to the HoC on the publication of the UK government’s consultation paper “Scotland’s constitutional future” which was effectively the argument for their case that a Section 30 order was required.

    During that debate, Angus Robertson accused Westminster of “trying to dictate the terms” of the 2014 referendum including the question and date.

    • Alex Clark says:

      Here we are 10 years later and the exact same arguments are being repeated again.

      • The arrogant smugness of Moore, flanked by NZ Trade Envoy Mundell and Danny Job Slasher Alexander who got his reward of a wee sinecure Banking job in China I believe.
        God, how we have progressed.
        The sheer elitist colonial patronising tone of this man would not be tolerated today.
        We the people of Scotland shall decide…Where’s Moore now? Auditing wee shopkeepers’ books in Kelso??
        Tuition Fees….A man never to be trusted.

  23. Golfnut says:

    The FM said that she had been instructed to proceed with a referendum by the people of Scotland, that’s important because the statement is consistent with Scots Constitutional practice. She also stated pretty unambiguously that it would be a legal referendum with or without a Section 30 notice and it’s worth noting that Scotland in a non political sense is still an independendent country bound only to the Union with England by Treaty, much as the UK was bound by Treaty to the EU.
    The Queen, is now on record as saying that she will accept a Yes vote, worth noting that the Treaty of Union was not instigated by either the Parliament of Scotland or the Parliament of England but by the monarch. Both Parliaments were instruments of the crown used to ratify the Treaty of Union.

  24. Dr Jim says:

    Anybody not familiar with the quaint little ways of the English parliament are probably scratching their heads wondering what the hell this nonsense argument is all about, they left the EU so Scotland wants to leave the UK, after all isn’t a union just a union that you can join or leave, even the Ukraine who’s in a war is joining the EU because it’s a better club to be in than the Russian club, I used to be in the musicians union all my working life till I retired so I left and not once did they say I couldn’t, or send a letter, postcard, phone call, flowers, something

    • The unspoken threat from the English Parliament, the English Iron Heel Oligarchy, and their cringing little pack Up Here is that no matter whether you hold a referendum or not, you are a colony of England, and we shall refuse to acknowledge the Sovereignty of the people of Scotland, because the Union is not by consent but by vanquish, no matter the result.
      If you follow the Hack Packs grinding universal message, we are held prisoner by out neighbour to the South, by force of arms.
      What’s left for us? Hold the plebiscite, and if the YES vote prevails, offer Divorce Talks, and deliver an ultimatum to England if they refuse to withdraw their troops, navy, and air force from Free Scotland?

      Sturgeon as Chamberlain?
      It would sound something like this.

      I am speaking to you from the cabinet room at Bute House. This morning the Scottish ambassador in London handed the UK government a final note stating that unless we heard from them by 11 o’clock that they were prepared at once to withdraw their armed forces from Scotland, a state of war would exist between us. I have to tell you now that no such undertaking has been received, and that consequently this country is at war with the UK.

      You can imagine what a bitter blow it is to me that all my long struggle to win peace has failed. Yet I cannot believe that there is anything more, or anything different, that I could have done and that would have been more successful.

      Will it come to this? Or will England finally concede that the Scottish People are sovereign, that the 300 year old Treaty is by mutual consent, and that we, the people of Scotland have chosen to end it.
      The Referendum shall take place. We shall win.
      We shall be taking back control of our country, beginning on Independence Day One.


  25. Hamish100 says:

    Dr `Jim

    🎶🎵🎵🎵🎶🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Did you leave of your own accordion?

  26. Hamish100 says:

    Are you a closet OO? Flute in pocket🎵🖖 it is the season for community singing!

  27. Capella says:

    STV news reveals an academic poll finds over 60% of Scots believe that the SNP/Greens have a mandate for a referendum. Pretty conclusive I would say.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Simple question, simple answer, and proof as to why no one should ever pay attention to the results of polls that pose multiple complex questions, time date why when if and or, they’re done like that not for reasons of information but for misinformation so analysts can interpret them any way they like, and they do don’t they

    • Alex Clark says:

      Clear as day that they have a mandate and the voters know this.

    • grizebard says:

      Indeed, though why the remaining 40% should disagree bears some thought. Around 2/3 of that are the determined Unionists, of course, but the remainder? Possibly those simply wishing not to be bothered with having to deal with such a weighty existential question any time soon?

      However, the 60% does tend to indicate the fraction of the public at least willing to hear the arguments, which bodes very well for a “yes” result if the case is put to them effectively.

  28. davetewart says:

    Agree DrJim

    Recently did a survey with strange questions about the performance of my local police. The questions and the chosen responses could mean anything.
    Try one, How do you rate the response time of your local force? Usual 5 possible answers.and nothing to include ‘I don’t know’

  29. yesindyref2 says:

    An interesting article by some dude in The National:

    “We’ve seen a clear sign that Yes movement is uniting – The REAL Scottish Politics”

    I’ve been complaining about how some people are so negative, and how they should move on and get with Indy Ref 2 rather than harping on the past. But that article is about conciliation, and perhaps from that point of view I should stfu and give these people time to get over their previous negative views and move with the changing times. Does that sound patronising? You bet! Oh well.

    On another note I see the expected couple of articles about Catalonia being pleased for our Indy Ref, but though on a personal level we might sympathise, our situations are very different, and to be blunt, it’s none of our business.

    More than that, any attempts to tie the two together could have disastrous effects for a YES vote. both getting it, and after as it’s Spain is the state that is one of the Council of the EU, member of NATO – and the UN.

    Presumably those who matter in the public eye already have this in hand.

    • Alex Clark says:

      Do you view conciliation under any circumstance as a positive or negative act?

      • Dr Jim says:

        The only folk thinking that adding 2% but losing up to 20% is good are the folk with the 2%

        • Alex Clark says:

          Oh dear, it’s nothing to do with 2% of anything but everything to do with how those with no view at all or care at all about political parties see the Independence movement as a whole.

          Petty squabbling is not a good look with the general public, like weans screaming, it’s a turn off.

    • grizebard says:

      I behoves everyone who is a genuine supporter of independence to be intensely aware that their motivations for wanting it aren’t necessarily shared by many of the people we still need to win over. Which is why the case needs to be presented carefully by all. The last thing we need is the self-reflective bubble of last time, leaving too many afterwards stunned that their favourite hobbyhorses somehow failed, then started scrabbling for excuses. That observation applies not least to the denizens of The National over matters such as Catalonia, and also informs Dr. Jim‘s response.

      Scotland can best support Catalonia, for example, after it has re-acquired its own agency. That has to come first, and its time that everyone who wants a win understood that.

  30. Alex Clark says:

    Any division between Independence supporters is raw meat to a biased media that amplifies such stories 10 or 20 fold. They love nothing more than a juicy morsel to be tossed their way by an unwitting politician or prominent supporter of Independence.

    They love these stories of division because it’s a tactic that has been used for thousands of years to split your enemy’s forces, a divided army is more easily defeated than a united army.

    As Independence supporters we should all refuse to give them any reason to pit one side against another, that’s what has been going on for the past 3 years. I’ll not be joining in, that’s for sure.

  31. Alex Clark says:

    Martin Geissler on the Sunday show last week was absolutely sickened that Alex Salmond failed to give him any soundbites in their interview that he even ignored or refused to thank him for appearing on the show. He was stumped for words because their cunning plan hadn’t worked.

    Same with Beth Rigby, “please, please give me something to attack Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP with…” Tumbleweed.

    That’s how you beat this so called UK media, give them nothing!

    • Dr Jim says:

      You’re right about Geissler of course, but he wouldn’t have even bothered trying if he didn’t already know the truth that lies behind the show

  32. Golfnut says:

    I find it difficult to believe that the majority of those purporting, particularly commentary on FB and twitter, to be independence supporters are indeed indeed independence supporters.

    • Alex Clark says:

      You’re absolutely right, a huge number of Unionists love nothing better than goading Salmond supporters into attacking Sturgeonites and vice versa. Throw in some controversial policies like GRA, toss in some fake news, stick in a poker a few times and you have a nice big fire going.

      I’d rather pour cold water on the flames and give them nothing to feel cosy about.

  33. Capella says:

    Support from Catalonia – and democrats everywhere.

    Nicola Sturgeon’s letter from former Catalan president Quim Torra – in full

    Scotland and Catalonia are sister nations, friends, and striving to be free in a Europe that is respectful of peoples and nations. You have expressed your determination to hold the independence referendum announced for next year with or without the permission of the British Government. That deserves full support and solidarity from democrats around the world. I wish to express my support to you and, by extension, that of many Catalans, who still see the claim for freedom as an essential necessity for solving the daily problems of our citizens.

  34. Capella says:

    Mike Russell spells it out:

    Scottish independence papers will be factual antidote to Project Fear

    “WILL our coal mines go gaily on? Will Ravenscraig and Linwood thrive? Will Bathgate flourish and Dounreay prosper?’’ These were the questions the Daily Express posed to its devo-sceptic readership in March 1979 as the campaign for the first devolution referendum heated up.
    “How much of Scotland’s economy,” it thundered rhetorically, “will be left intact if a Scottish Assembly gets to go ahead?’’

    Well of course that Assembly didn’t in the end “get the go-ahead” although a majority of those voting backed it.

    But the damage – economic, social, individual and national – happened anyway. The car factories at Linwood and Bathgate were closed in less than a decade. Ravenscraig stopped producing steel in 1992 and Dounreay ceased generating electricity two years later.
    Scotland’s economy tanked but not because it had a democratically elected assembly. It was destroyed by Thatcher and her Tories because it didn’t have that democratically elected Parliament in place, willing and able to stand up to the ruthless destruction of our country and its prospects.

    • grizebard says:

      Hostages to fortune, hostages to fortune… so very many of them…

      (Judging by past behaviour, it seems to take the people of Scotland a couple of goes before sufficient of them see the basic good sense in enhanced autonomy. So next indyref, “two times a charm”…?!)

  35. Dr Jim says:

    Many people this morning will have watched Boris Johnson on the news give a very comfortable interview in which the interviewer allowed him the time and space to make all of his demonstrative noises and predictions filled with all his unbound rhetoric and gesturing and those people might think if they were watching SKY news or the BBC or even ITV didn’t the Prime Minister perform rather well, but at the same time they might think what the hell was going on with the interviewer that he put Johnson under no pressure whatsoever, there were no interruptions to any of the PMs statements, no searching questions on a word the PM uttered, this is a bit odd isn’t it? so what was going on here with SKY or the BBC or ITN?

    Well the answer is that none of these news organisations conducted this interview, this interview was conducted by Tom Harwood of GB news the most right wing Tory supporting jackbooted armband wearing propaganda unit in Britain in the same vein as FOX news in America is for Donald Trump, because Boris Johnson wouldn’t allow any other news broadcaster to interview him in case they asked him any awkward questions so GB news was drafted in to do a PR job to hand out to the normal broadcasters

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson is now back to the future in another country in the 1930s who used the same propaganda news machine style of approach to dictatorship, so far in America it’s failed to make Trump great again, will England lap this attempt up in their country ? will they just watch it happen ? will they see it as a good thing for *their country* of course they will

    And guess who gets stuck with the rise of this despot whether we want it or not? Scotland, if we don’t vote YES to Independence

    This is now becoming an emergency situation

  36. Capella says:

    Iceland celebrates 78 years of independence. Iceland has a smaller population than Aberdeen.

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      One for the football buffs.

      In the autumn of 2016, I attended a function here in England where part of the proceedings involved a raffle of various items for local good causes. One of the prizes in the raffle was said with pride by the organiser to be a genuine Euro ’16 match ball.

      You can imagine his dirty look towards me when I asked,

      “Has it been signed by the Icelandic football team?”

      (Somehow, I knew after that I wasn’t going to win that ball.)

  37. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Murdo Fraser said on Tory channel GB News…” If you think Brexit is bad independence would be ten times worse”…..that’s the SAME Brexit that YOUR party Murdo instigated, campaigned for and HALF implemented , as forgot about or rather didn’t care, about NI…….the SAME Brexit that you and your colleagues told us in Scotland we HAD to accept it as was a UK wide vote….so we in Scotland just had to suck it up as part of YOUR UK where we in Scotland are NEVER the ones whose votes count as part of YOUR UK but instead are made to tolerate what another country and another government decides IT wants……including BAD policies via YOUR party Murdo which when implemented YOU tell Scotland to ACCEPT but in reality YOU ACCEPT are BAD for Scotland but ONLY concede that point when INDEPENDENCE is mentioned…..

    Murdo Fraser also spoke, from a UK perspective, when asked by GB presenter ” Shouldn’t the UK just vote and kick Scotland out”….now before I go onto what Murdo said…..that Q that includes ” UK vote and kick Scotland OUT”… as Scotland is CURRENTLY STILL in the UK would that then be Scots voting to kick themselves OUT of the UK ?…..or are we once again in the territory of an English presenter believing that the UK is a separate entity from Scotland…..YES of course ….what he REALLY means is that the UK is England…as Wales also never taken into consideration with them.

    So back to Murdo…..he responded to that by listing in the context of WE aka his UK…would lose all resources including renewable energy if Scotland voted to leave HIS UK….he said ” WE would lose Scottish fishing waters, Oil, WE would lose Whiskey, WE would lose access to great Universities, WE would lose access to the Renewable energy etc etc”…He then said ” Why would WE want to lose access to all of that”

    What is interesting about Murdo saying all that is it indicates he was desperately , as in spelling out to ignorant GB News presenter, listing what Scotland GIVES to HIS UK and that ignorant GB News presenter’s UK ….thus for those ignorant and uninformed watchers of GB News he was explaining to THEM as in SPELLING OUT that,(but in the context that he MURDO was one of them not a Scot with his frequent use of WE aka HIS UK) if Scotland GOES then he sees it as THEM , UK, including him LOSING so much… Scotland not the economic basket case that GB News and t’other’s often state Scotland is and also Murdo also states TOO ….BUT…instead a precious source of crucial economically beneficial resources….ones HIS and THEY, UK, need to exploit and plunder from to enable THEIR and HIS UK to survive Brexit and other Tory generated disaster policies in the future……

    Murdo NOT elected by Scots and the above statements explain why…..for once he concedes the REAL argument he sees for Scotland remaining in HIS UK…not for Scotland’s benefit but for HIS and OTHER worshippers at the alter of THEIR UK……

  38. davetewart says:

    Love the piece buried in the tweet.
    Murdo fraser on gbnews says englandland will lose whisky, oil, gas, renewable energy etc if the englanders let Scotland go indy.
    We pay him well for representing a foreign power.

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Yep dave …he gets paid as an MSP to act AGAINST the people of Scotland as a WM fanboy loitering in another country’s parliament (one he and his party were AGAINST being created) ….but then he is only, yet again, a bridesmaid aka List MSP not an elected constituency MSP,,,, and remember when he is a guest on BBC Debate Night he will alter his argument to one where tis HIS UK aka England that gives so much to Scotland and will argue if we leave HIS UK aka England we will be doomed…..thus doing what ALL Unionist politicians do…present Murdo’s and their UK aka England as the ONLY REAL benefactor in the UK to a too wee, too poor Scotland when debating on MSM……they also put Wales in same category….and NI…thus why we KNOW, for THEM, when they speak about the UK , for THEM, tis synonymous with England.

      You see they have two caps they MUST wear……one for the Tory channel GB News where they need to spell it out to BritNats what Scotland is REALLY worth to their UK aka England so please don’t campaign to “vote and kick Scotland out” as WE, UK, NEED THEM to prosper and survive …..and then they wear t’other cap when on MSM debate shows to spell out what THEIR UK aka England is worth to Scotland thus why Scotland needs to stay in their UK……

      Forgetting always we, here in Scotland, have ACCESS to these various media outlets and also social media exposes these ‘interviews’ and ‘debate shows’ on these outlets via videos online…….Murdo is not the brightest but then he IS a Tory after all…..and one the Scottish electorate have rejected time and time again……for obvious good reason.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      The simple reason is the majority in England for various reason fully support Indy2 and if it is the decision to become independent so be it, the Unionists are fighting Scotland AND England.

      The Tories did too good a job in convincing some that Scotland was a millstone around England’s neck, now the “subsidy spongers” gambit has come back and bit them in the backside.
      Turdo has the unenviable task of trying to convince England otherwise without explicitly admitting it was all a deliberate lie, it’s priceless.
      I imagine both gbnews viewers were spitting feathers…

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Murdo will be getting lambasted with criticism from usual BritNat suspects on Twitter for conceding the many benefits, though he did NOT list all, that Scotland GIVES to the UK….I say GIVES when mean that they, via their UK Government , TAKES them….

        • Bob Lamont says:

          Typo alert on “the many benefits”, the extraneous “m” in particular.
          Turdo has spent his entire 20+ political career “getting lambasted ” and is still laughing all the way to the bank, does anyone seriously expect his gravy train to end before collecting his humungous pension ? He was originally placed by the Tories as “in with the bricks”, long before the Tank 2b Baroness, Jackass and DRoss proved the “b” was a misspelling…
          Nobody pays the slightest attention to Turdo or DRoss or Jack or Juan set o wallies, were it not for HMS “we’ve seen the emails FM” James Cook’s constant reminders they are alive and a force to be reckoned with in Scotland, most would respond who ?

      • grizebard says:

        It is indeed priceless. Post Brexit, the Unionists – and not just the hapless Turdo – are heading into the next indyref having to argue opposites simultaneously. Not a good place to be.

        I just hope that somebody is keeping a record of such examples of self-abasing two-facedness. I reckon we could win IR2 on the sorry trail of past Unionist “hostages to fortune” alone.

  39. We could all do with a wee occasional laugh in these trying times.

    My sincere thanks go to the Daily Reckless Police Gazette and Ambulance Chaser this morning.

    They fill even more pointless column inches with a nothing piece attempting to analyse the potential favourites in the contest to lead the Britter Together assault on the ‘separatists’ and their illegal wildcat boycotted divisive know the script by now.

    The Daily Record is backing the NO side of a Referendum which they don’t believe the English Parliament will allow. So boycott the Brit Rag, all in the AUOB camp.

    This tawdry little tartan Daily Mirror lists its front runners as :-

    The Clunking Fist Broon, North Briton, and Iraq War bank roller.

    Baroness Davidson of Rape Clause, wh, it must be surmised has spent enough time with her family by now..

    Anas The Millionaire dentist and Cash and Carry King who would close the fictional Education Attainment Gap by sending all our children to private schools just like he has done for his weans.

    And an outsider here, admit the Raggard, Lord Darling of Flipper, who fucked off in the autumn of 2014 never to be seen again.

    Oh please, if there’s a Supreme Being, let it be so.

    Personally, I’d like Wee Willie Winkie back.

    Boycott the No supporting dead tree scrolls, Duggers.


    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Well Jack…good luck to them, DR, supporting BT NO side and trying NOT to mention the ‘B’ word that was implemented BY the Union and is now being endorsed and accepted BY all of those parties who are Unionist parties and thus supporters of the Union ….as Brexit has proven to be one of THE biggest clusterf*cks and greatest self harm a country (England) under the guise of a United Kingdom has willingly done to itself to bring about so much unnecessary chaos and such huge economic harm and as part of their Union we in Scotland must also SUFFER the many negative impacts of their Union via THAT policy too…….

      So one wonders what will they, as Unionists, do NEXT to generate even MORE chaos, harm and economic damage that will impact us in Scotland…against our will and against what WE vote for in elections via a majority….i.e. we do NOT vote, via a majority, for a Unionist party to lead us/govern us or impose Union generated policies upon us that we did NOT support or vote for…. but instead we supported and voted for those parties supportive of independence……but apparently OUR votes and NEEDS do not matter, count and are worth NOTHING in THEIR (non) Union…..

      You laugh or cry…or you resist and rebel by voting for Independence….simples.

  40. Indeed, though why the remaining 40% should disagree bears some thought

    They’re the kindae people the 3rd Reich actively recruited in countries they took over to run things locally.

    • I’m thinking of buying shares in tar’,n,, SS.
      There might be a surge in business October/November 2023.

      How to build your own tumbril website may crash.
      The second that England forbids our Claim of Right is the time when all Jock Brits’ status up here officially changes.

    • I actually meant to quote Grizebard here in response to the video posted:

      Was looking for the tables too. I suspect the 60% who agree the Scottish government have a mandate for iref2 is without DKs, so it’s not 40% who think they don’t, but X% + the DKs (not paying attentions).

      When you consider 30% of people in the UK admit being racially prejudiced, and 30% vote Tory / UKIP etc, then about the same not believing the winners of an election have a mandate – unless it’s their own party that wins – sounds about right.

      • James says:

        The full tables are only available in a .dta file, but the tables for the question mentioned are here:

      • Thanks James. I thought the quote was maybe from the MORI poll at that time.

        As I suspected, only 25% firmly stated there was ‘definitely’ no mandate for iref2 in the SES 2021. That’s the level of really unpleasant people in Scotland and in most societies sadly.

      • Just 11% of DKs were definite that the Scottish government had no mandate for iref2 compared to 48% of No supporters. Jeez.

        So basically half the no vote does not believe in democracy. It’s pretty scary when you think about that, particularly with the UK not having a PR system. I am a yesser, but I accept the will of the people and always will. The 2014 result was so sad, but I never disputed it. Democracy is the foundation of civil society, where serious disagreements are settled with bits of paper and pens.

        Sadly half of brits/No voters in Scotland believe in violence and an end to voting is the way forward. Gulp.

        • grizebard says:

          Looking on the brighter side, half do. And some might even be open to persuasion…

          The other, bitter, half are just saying “no mandate” to a pollster because they’re fundamentally Britlish in outlook, are “dug in” against any change, and fear the consequences of a new indyref. But will they consequently boycott it? I very much doubt it.

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      What’s the Scots for ‘Gauleiter’?

  41. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Colin Brazier ex SKY News presenter and now a presenter on Tory channel GB News tweeted this :

    “A British army led by the Duke of Wellington defeated Napoleon at Waterloo, on this day in 1815.
    What had started as a Republican movement, gave way to the Terror and, ultimately despotism.

    “despotism” said Colin…perhaps would have been better , given CURRENT UK circumstances, that he had NOT gone there in mentioning that word……but British flag S**gging has to be promoted somehow I suppose and who better than another GB News presenter…that’s their JOB..

    Honest people though responded that his, Colin’s, recollection was NOT entirely accurate in his ‘Britain uber alles’ won solely as the ‘British Army’ tweet as it omitted the involvement of ‘other’ nationalities help in that battle….that included soldiers from Holland, Belgium, Saxony and Hanover plus Prussians……..

    While Brexiteers simply accepted Colin’s tweet, with no challenge to it’s accuracy just wanton acceptance that it HAS to be factual…(just as we find like all things promoted re Brexit that they as Brexiteers also just accept as factual), and so in their, Brexiteers, responding tweets they were all uber Britain is THE best and others (French) BAD…..same as those Brexiteers who state ‘We (Britain) won the war’ against Germany re World War 2.

    Responses to Colin’s tweet via Brexiteers like “Giving the French a damn good spanking has been a British pastime ever since”……and….”And the French have never gotten over it”….

    However the funniest (strangest) one was someone who responded to those who challenged Colin’s tweet and sought accuracy in highlighting the omissions of ‘others’ involvement being mentioned ……….This Brexiteer tweeted “History is not there for you to like or dislike, it is there for you to learn from it. If it offends you even better, because then you are less likely to repeat it. It’s not yours to erase. It belongs to us all”….to which ANOTHER Brexiteer responded to her tweet and stated ” well said”…Nope as a response to others highlighting Colin’s omissions it was a stupid tweet and thus not well said as a response……and in tweeting what she did she OMITTED to respond accordingly as she intentionally erased the points being made by others…….a totally out of context response to what others were saying re omissions by Colin…..I suspect she did it deliberately too ( like George Foulkes quote on SNP).

    See those who accept EVERYTHING solely because it favours their ‘Britain’ especially on matters that sees their Britain pitted against a European country as somehow Britain being depicted as Better, Stronger, Braver, Richer and thus superior to another country in Europe….without clearly knowing the truth on the information they are responding to….well that is very much a cult….all accepting , all believing and even when inaccuracy (fact) highlighted they STILL refuse to admit they are wrong, misinformed, ignorant or that they are clearly just giving blind allegiance to those whose job it clearly is to hoodwink them just to keep them onboard the Brexit Bus ( good vehicle to use as example given the actual Brexit Bus used in their campaign in 2016)…….those whose job it is to maintain their allegiance…say like ….those presenters from GB News….

    I despair at how so full of hate people seem to be that they are willing to concede so much to those others who care not a damn about them or their wellbeing that ultimately will see them as complicit in their own downfall via standards of living etc ….all just to go down the rabbit hole of supporting and endorsing British Nationalism as THE solution to all obstacles and problems……people who are currently supporting this… are the same people who accuse us and others like us as being members of a ‘Cult’ and ‘Nats’….. they do so with absolutely NO sense of self awareness …as if….

    But uber BritNat’s here would rather agree ( and be a part of ) that small minded uninformed cult than challenge them on facts and indeed would NEVER put Scotland BEFORE their beloved Britain…..even those uber BritNats in Scotland that voted Remain in 2016 have now, like many Unionist politicians who voted Remain, jumped onto the Brexit Bus… SAVE their Union and DENY Scotland democracy and any chance to escape all of the ignorance, Hate , division and thus have an opportunity to be free from all that currently corrupts ,via the REAL uber Nationalism that is the BRITISH nationalism being promoted , that infects some in certain parts of THEIR UK……..

    The minute you deny and ignore FACTS well what hope is there for these people…..their and others versions of truth and reality is what THEY prefer to accept and respond to…..perhaps someone should tell Boris Johnson that when he asks the ‘British’ public to use common sense he is wasting his breath as for certain people it clearly is not something they have……but I think he already KNOWS that…..and for him it has always been his way of passing the buck of responsibly AWAY from him and his government and onto the people……a Tory political version of ‘a big boy did it and ran away’

    Without independence as an escape route my depression would be off the chart…..instead it is the ONLY thing that gives me hope and a chance to suppress the symptoms of depression that I would surely succumb to…….a life of misery…..NO THANKS……I prefer Hope over Hate….so YES PLEASE to Independence for Scotland….if nothing else it keeps people like me from falling into despair and a sense of losing all hope of coping and ultimately having the opportunity of living in a country that at least is trying to be better…..not just for those of us who live there…but for those others less fortunate who do not live here….. but with a more open and welcoming attitude could do if they wish to ….as in come here to live and work…for their and OUR benefit too….that’s the Scotland I want to live in…NOT the UK as is NOW.

    Have a nice evening everyone

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      *responsibly….should be ‘responsibility’

    • grizebard says:

      Wellington himself admitted that Napoleon would likely have won at Waterloo if it weren’t for the timely arrival of the Prussians. But history is just a means to an end for political myth-spinners. Patriotism is many things to many people, but it is still, as Dr. Johnson once wisely observed, the last refuge of the scoundrel.

      • What NMRN says…

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        Indeed grizebard…..hence when we hear that “scoundrel” Keir Starmer hail ‘Patriotism’ as if it is a “refuge” to cling onto and uphold ……and he does it at a time when another party, Tories, are in power and while he, Starmer, is aware of all that other party are doing, he, Starmer, fails as a supposed opposition leader to provide any REAL opposition to them in HIS UK…….patriotism to Starmer is him out BtirNatting the Tory party… a fight for Red wall seats….und Brexit voters votes obvs in any forthcoming by election(s) and next GE.

        • grizebard says:

          They were all at it during their Covid briefings, were’t they? A Union Rag – even a pair sometimes – behind every one of them as if it renders some kind of guaranteed protection. Or as if the virus is deterred by the grandiose demands stuck on the inside cover of the fatuously-restored dark blue passport!

    • Capella says:


    • dakk says:

      In a nutshell NMRN.A decent sized one at that 🙂

  42. davetewart says:

    The film Peterloo tells the story of what the government did to the population after waterloo.
    The boy bugler was left to find his way home.
    A film ,yes but based on recorded history.
    As we found after 2014 and the Vow, quickly replaced with EVel and promises ditched.

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Hi dave, I have not seen that Mike Leigh film……but Peterloo as a part of HISTORY I suspect tis one part many supportive of Brexit, as in the more fanatical ones, will NOT seek to highlight as of any historical significance (for THEM)….I read that the Peterloo massacre paved the way for parliamentary democracy and particularly the Great Reform Act of 1832….’parliamentary democracy; was I believe apparently hugely significant to Brexiteers…..via Sovereignty……but in reality it has has been hijacked by the Tory party post Brexit vote…..and any so called democracy in THEIR parliament at WM is now only available to the one party with a 80 seat majority ( less now that some Tory MP’s have resigned for various reasons (some unsavoury) or crossed the house to the other Tory party…Labour ( Christian Wakeford) ).

      Brexiteers prefer to laud battles via wars which they present as having been won solely by their Britain uber alles…… other major and tragic events in their history that present the killing of civilians by ‘British’ soldiers is one they prefer to erase and omit from their version(s) of history and reality…..all brutality against the people is consigned to ‘File under MOVE ON and DO NOT mention or didn’t happen’.

      Selective history they can quote and also adapt to a more, to them, acceptable version as in more palatable to those Brexiteers who believe their true worth as a country is only to be reflected in supposedly winning battles/wars against foreigners (solo effort via only Britain apparently) , keeping foreigners out and currently fighting a cancel culture war against the woke, which in future history books will be highlighted as FAKE WARS instigated by the right …as opposed to the REAL wars they , Brexiteers, seem to want to aspire to return to ……as apparently according to Brexiteers during the war (2nd world war) people were better in Britain then….though ‘better’ may not be the best word….I would say a lot of people felt they HAD to work together as all in same boat and as innocents naturally had to suffer consequences of others who (mis)lead a country….but as now sure there were many others at that time who failed to support, join in and help others in such troubled and violent times….

      I must watch this film ‘Peterloo’ when next on television as it will be interesting though sad ….I quite like Mike Leigh films …prefer Ken Loach as film maker though and certainly like his, Loach’s, humanity, his opposition to New New Labour and his support for Scottish independence……

      Yes dave… the infamous Vow not a Vow for Scotland (more a desperate last ditch attempt to deceive really) was given minor league status when Cameron announced EVEL for England… an acronym the pronunciation when one says it as a word is most apt for the Tories is it NOT….then and NOW.

      Have a nice evening dave

      • davetewart says:

        Wonderful clip on the O’Brien phone in.
        Why is throwing eggs at their icons of faith, churchill and thatcher are hanging offences but destruction of the ECHR and human rights, the churchill idea to stop fascism is totally okay
        Throw in the faux outrage at P&O sacking their employees and now the rail striker are the enemy of the people.

        The uk is losing the plot, time for Scotland to do its own thing..

    • Seems I have that available on prime video. Looks worth a watch. I’m a fan of historical movies.

  43. yesindyref2 says:

    It;s time the SNP cleaned up their Westminster MPs, they shouldn’t drink when on duty – and at Westminster they’re on duty till they go back home again.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      I know, I know, I shouldn’t. But this comment wins the internet today:

      Two more candidates for helping out with manning the oars on CalMac’s new Arran galleys.

  44. yesindyref2 says:

    From the National:

    An “illegal wildcat” referendum without Westminster’s approval, as the Scottish Conservatives have branded it, risks being challenged in the Supreme Court, or boycotted by Unionists and its legitimacy undermined.

    It can’t be an “illegal wildcat” referendum you total roaster, why do you give aid and succour to the Tories, by using their wrong language?

    • Golfnut says:

      I saw an article ( headline ) in the National that the SG were planning a consultative referendum to avoid a legal challenge.
      I didn’t get to read the article and I’m not aware of that actually coming from the Scottish government. Is your comment related to the same article.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        The Scottish Government wouldn’t say that! It’s wrong, dumb wrong, and as legislators and the executive, they know better!

        No, I’m afraid it’s one of the careless journos, and with Indy Ref 2 on the way, he needs to UP HIS GAME.

        Nexte he’ll be talking about “Leave” and “Scexit”.

      • Alex Clark says:

        The Scottish government will not avoid a legal challenge to a referendum by calling it “consultative”.

        It’s possible that there will be no legal challenge before an Independence referendum bill is given Royal Assent but that will only be because the UK government doesn’t want to be seen by the rest of the world as the one’s trying to prevent Scots from exercising their democratic right.

        No other party or individual can challenge the bill before it has become law but then anyone can.

        • grizebard says:

          Avoid, no, since at some point some convenient Unionist stooge (whether UKGov-promoted or well-funded freebooter) can always be found, if no S.30 is forthcoming. But whoever, attempting to suppress democracy is a very bad look, not least among the Scottish public, where the attempt could backfire spectacularly.

          And if attempted regardless, win? That’s another matter entirely, I think. SSkier had a nifty answer to that upthread.

          • Alex Clark says:

            It’s a problem for Westminster, since if they fail to challenge the legality of a referendum bill before it receives royal assent then you can only assume that they and their law officers viewed the bill as being within the competence of the Scottish government.

            Hmmm, what to do?

          • Golfnut says:

            They’ve got one. Tory donor, party member and I think failed candidate, the bbc all time favourite go too Carehome owner. The record had this story, threatening court action if the SG try to get a referendum bill through parliament. Possible put up job by the media or the Union units proxy.

      • Golfnut says:

        Just read the article, he citing a times article FFS.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Sorry Golfnut, I see from Alex’s reply I didn’t read your posting properly. Mea maxima culpa! yes, I think it’s unlikely, could be yet another red herring, not one of mine this time 🙂

    • grizebard says:

      Certainly has no clue about framing, that one. (I do worry about where The National is at sometimes.)

  45. Dr Jim says:

    Wasn’t the Brexit referendum consultative until Westminster decided to create law to enact the result ? aren’t all referendums a public consultation on an issue ? as I recall the Brexit referendum didn’t have to be enacted

    • grizebard says:

      Exactly. (Though with the EURef, the result did suit the UKGov of the day anyway.)

      Because of the Edinburgh Agreement, the first indyref was on a much firmer footing, but still, once a decision of constitutional significance is taken and all can see the “settled will”, it’s virtually impossible to ignore the decision regardless. (Well, in any respectable democracy, anyway). That’s why the Unionists are so desperate to avoid IR2, even a purely “consultative” one properly legislated by Holyrood.

      • Dr Jim says:

        That’s my understanding too so I don’t really know what all the fuss is about because we’re dealing with Westminster here where law and legality means nothing and what we’re counting on is mostly world recognition of the legitimacy of Scotlands choice

        I don’t reckon it would matter if the Angel Gabriel witnessed the document stating Scotlands rights and threatening England with the heavens crashing in on them if they behave badly following the result, what’ll matter more to England is the action the rest of the world threaten to take if they don’t behave properly

    • Alex Clark says:

      Same as Grizbard says, In the UK at least all referendum results are considered to be consultative, doesn’t mean they can be ignored though as that would be controversial indeed.

      • Golfnut says:

        I wonder if there’s a ‘ convention ‘ of sorts covering referendums. They paucheld the first devolution referendum by counting the dead, but it’s worth remembering that the Scottish parliament and devolution referendum was honoured, neither would have happened if the people of Scotland hadn’t voted in favour even with the pressure being exerted by the EU.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      There was a clip recently on the WM debate prior to Indyref1, where then SOSS Michael Moore made the bold statement that no matter how it is framed as “consultative” or any other description, an indy referendum WOULD be declared illegal by the Courts.
      The then AG (Dominic Grieve ?) could only offer a legal opinion, he could not possibly KNOW how a Court would judge, hence this bluff was to afford HMG interference in and create precedent for, a S30 in a Scottish referendum, and it’s been a red herring ever since.

      A referendum is a polling of opinion which has no direct consequence in Law, thereby CANNOT be declared illegal by a Court of Law where cause and effect must be proven.
      Were that not the case, YouGov, Ipsos MORI, etc would forever be in Court.

  46. Hamish100 says:

    I see bbc are bringing out Gordon brown on the tele this morning. The financial backer of the Iraq war, the financial crash etc.Do you think the referendum might be mentioned in a set up question?
    I think his lies should be called out. We were too nice last time.

  47. Hamish100 says:

    I take it all back, he just mentioned selfish nationalists once. Obviously Brit nationalism is exempted as being good.

    • Calum says:

      Did he mean Scottish nationalists or British nationalists like himself. The corrupt buffoon really should have been asked to clarify.

  48. Dr Jim says:

    Democracy is illegal when we say it is, that’s the position of those who support the position of the *voluntarily* constituted union of four equal nations

    This morning on the BBC where we are the branch manager of the Labour party in Scotland Anas Sarwar declared his position quite clearly by *misunderstanding* the questions he was being asked as he presented his case that everybody in Scotland where we are should all just ignore this democracy notion and we all should wait and see how England votes at the next General Election, because if the folks in England vote Labour then Scotland can breath a sigh of relief that once again England changed their minds from voting Tory and everything will be alright again

    So there you are Scottish voters we’ll be alright if we wait for English voters to throw out Boris Johnson

    And y’see there’s yer problem Scotland because in over fifty years Scotlands votes in any General Election have had no bearing on whichever political party becomes the government of the UK, oh that includes where we are by the way

    What Sarwar and his union mates the Tories want Scotland to do is,,,,,, nothing, nada, zilch
    Sarwar and his Tory mates all want the same thing, the status quo of nothing, the land that goes nowhere, a silent people, a compliant country to afraid to tell him and his Tory mates tae get tae and do one

    Scotland doesn’t need to be the best, the globalist, the world beatingist, we only need the freedom to choose, people die in wars to achieve that, they give their lives for that one thing, freedom to choose, and Anas Sarwar a branch manager of an English political party doesn’t want Scotland to have that same choice that countries all over the world fought and died for everybody’s right to choose

    Just because Scotland is connected to England geographically doesn’t mean we’re the same in every respect, Ukraine was joined to Russia for goodness sake do we see loads of Anas Sarwars and his mates jumping up and down to keep Ukraine in a union with Russia? why not? they’re connected aren’t they?

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Does Sarwar think that Scots will think that if Labour win the next GE then they , Labour , will be the UK government for EVER MORE…..and thus the Tories will NEVER EVER be in power again…..well that’s a mental position to argue for maintaining HIS (non) Union.

      Apparently in last week’s BBC QT from Newcastle some peeps in audience…Did NOT know what Labour represented…..Fence sitters…..Starmer weak and incoherent (as old chap in audience apparently stated Starmer not clear on what Labour’s message was)….basically Starmer is seen as too scared to take a definitive position in case he scares some voters off …..and as he regularly supports decision made by the Tories he gives voters in England the impression that actually the Tories might not be that bad…if Labour agree with them on so many things……Duh !

      And as you say Dr Jim we , in Scotland, are expected to wait until people in England decide Now is The Time to vote Labour but with no certainty that they WILL win next GE….or indeed even if they do win there is absolutely no guarantee they will keep doing so in subsequent elections…so then we in Scotland will be back to square one…Deja Vu.

      That sounds about right for the limit of Sarwar’s aspiration for a future Scotland…..suffer just now then when England decide to finally vote Labour into power it’ll then be alright (kinda hopefully not guaranteed though) Scotland as long as you don’t want another Indy Ref or expect to be more advantageous than England, who we Labour are beholden to , as without THEIR votes we would NOT have won the GE…..also we may have a list of excuses, like the Tories , of why we cannot make everything better with the cost of living etc… of the excuses we can use is the mess the Tories have left behind which means it’s going to be a long long time until public and you Scotland see any, if any at all, benefits (longer for you Scotland actually probably not see any as you are, as per, last in the queue in OUR UK for any money, UK Govt. investment etc)….also we will need to make that thing YOU, Scotland, voted against ,as in Brexit, WORK ( not sure how as the 6 tests Starmer once announced seem defunct now….but who will even remember what they were)…..

      BBC have decided that Now is The Time they allow Sarwar to shine…. given Dross’s HQ party are pretty much toxic… step aside Dross and move forward Sarwar……the new champion for the Union……Sarwar thinks he is winning coming second in Council elections to a Tory party that were, at the time, being ripped apart under a leader that a lot of people in Scotland dislike intensely …..not so much winning just a case of the lesser of two evils for SOME voters (though NOT a majority ) but still NOT greater than the actual party that won Council elections i.e. SNP

      It’s so predictable it’s now become BORING…..and PATHETIC really…..and nauseating too…to be honest…..

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        “so then we in Scotland will be back to square one…Deja Vu.”

        As in being governed by Tories in UK.

        Mind you NOT that I am even attempting to suggest things will be any better with a Labour government…especially under Blair fanboy Starmer… will be a case of here’s another Tory government deploying similar policies to previous one but pretending they are NOT the same …….but they really really ARE.

        Scotland will be in same or worse position if they listened to pound shop Tories Starmer and Sarwar and also their ONE MP Ian Murray who could, God forbid, be the next Scottish Sec of State for Scotland for New NEW Labour aka Tories in Red….taking over where Tory Jack left off…..both birds of a feather obvs

        Shudder…..and perish the thought.

        • Dr Jim says:

          Governments are elected to *govern* by and for the will of the people, not *rule* by their own will

          Sarwar and his mates the Tories insult and treat voters with total contempt when they talk to them as thought they’re goldfish with no brains of their own and with ten second memories

          Democracy is the principle of the populace selecting individuals to the office of lawmaker to represent that populace, not to deny the populace that which they were placed in governance to do

          Sarwar is behaving no differently to the dictator Boris Johnson who uses weasel worded analogous misdirection to mask facts, governments are elected to *govern* by and for the will of the people, not *rule* by their own will

  49. davetewart says:

    Compare to the break up of the USSR, not an unusual divorce system.
    Norway broke up with Sweden.
    Now we are to get more on the london medicine that doesn’t take our needs into account.
    Just read TUS blog on the cladding regulations from englandland and compared to Scotland.
    Fill in the new linked in fire alarms, we are totally capable of looking after our own.
    Anyway there’sbeen a murdo on gbnews as reported, he’s peddling two opposing views at the same time.
    Too wee, too poor and too stupid.
    Englandland would be bankrupt if they let Scotland go.

  50. yesindyref2 says:

    This isn’t something I do very often – quoting a comment in full from elsewhere – but I seriously can’t be bothered trying to rephrase it, as it seems to me to be just about perfect in any way.

    As I’ve pointed out before, and Andrew repeats here, a Referendum Bill would not be competent if it had the ‘effect’ of altering a reserved matter like the Constitution.

    It certainly could not do so directly, Holyrood explicitly lacks such a power, it could only do so indirectly.

    If the voters were Sovereign in Scotland for example then their instructions would have the weight of law and would have the legal ‘effect’ of making the Referendum results binding.

    That ordinarily would put the Referendum Bill outwith the scope of Holyrood if it were not for two things.

    Firstly the Supreme Court lacks the power to overrule the Sovereign body. Generally that is Westminster but in this instance would be the People of Scotland.

    The very thing that might make the Supreme Court rule a Referendum Bill was incompetent is the same thing that they lack the ability to overrule. It would only be incompetent because the People of Scotland have ultimate authority to make such a decision without interference from Westminster or the SC.

    Secondly, and for exactly the same reason, Holyrood already has the power to pass this specific Bill. The only power that could make the Bill incompetent, the Sovereignty of the Scottish People, has already been exercised to expand the powers of Holyrood to pass this specific Bill in the plebiscite election we held last May.

    Either the People of Scotland are not Sovereign and the Bill is competent as it has no reserved ‘effect or they are Sovereign and they have already exercised that power to give Holyrood the power to pass a Bill the Supreme Court explicitly lacks the power to overrule for the same reason.

    As far as the rule of law goes we can perfectly legally pass a Referendum Bill and there’s nothing anyone can do within the law and Constitution to prevent it.

    With the obvious caveat that the current government in Westminster has demonstrated their total disregard for the rule of law quite comprehensively by now.

    The only thing I’d add is that if the People of Scotland ARE Sovereign, then basically speaking the Scotland Act is totally irrelevant – in every way.

    And a result of that is that anyone challenging such a Referendum passed by the duly elected Parliament of Scotland, runs a risk of proving that Scotland is already Independent; all we need it so confirm that is the democratic will of the Sovereign People of Scotland.

  51. Dr Jim says:

    Labour MSP Alex Rowley who is another representative of the English Labour party has popped his unionist head up once again to proffer again the notion of what he calls *home rule* once again missing the point of democracy that a government is not selected to *rule* but only to govern on behalf of the people

    In 2015 there was a thing called the Smith Commission offered to Scotlands political parties, this was to be an exercise in deciding basically how much and how many powers should be devolved to the Scottish parliament, the Labour party voted basically against all of them as did the Tories, my recollection is that the Liberal Democrats voted for one power to be devolved, the SNP and Greens voted for almost everything they could, but as the two Independence supporting parties were outnumbered by the three England supporting ruling parties Scotland got nothing. nada, zilch and once again the lies of the Labour party were exposed when they talk about *home rule*

    Labour lies and they do it in the most obscene anti democratic fashion, they’ve lied to their own loyal members for years and believe if they can get away with that they can get away with lying to everyone else, I have nothing but the utmost contempt for the Labour party and all of its representatives who condone this behaviour

    The Tories wear their uniforms proudly and we can all see what they are, the Labour party hide like rats their intent behind red ties and red flags, both are no different to the other

  52. So our referendum is to just be consultative again, as per 2014 iref1 and 2016 EU. Or all referendums in the UK really.,anyway%2C%20because%20Parliament%20is%20sovereign.

    Referendums [in the UK] are normally not legally binding, so legally the Government can ignore the results; for example, even if the result of a pre-legislative referendum were a majority of “No” for a proposed law, Parliament could pass it anyway, because Parliament is sovereign.

    • Golfnut says:

      I’m just going to say ‘ no ‘ unless your perspective is based entirely on English law.
      Nicola has already stated where her authority comes from on this issue.

    • Oh I agree, I was just pointing out, as Paul did, that all referendums in the UK are consultative, including those in Scotland.

      The media seem to be jumping on iref2 as unusual for being ‘consultative only’ and ‘not legally binding’, even though that’s the case for all referendums in the UK.

      • Golfnut says:

        The media seem to be jumping on iref2 as unusual for being ‘consultative only’ and ‘not legally binding’, even though that’s the case for all referendums in the UK.
        And why do you think they are doing that?
        This is not a UK poll, it’s the Scottish Parliament that has been instructed, not the SNP not the Scottish Goverment nor westminster, to carry out this poll.
        This is a terrifying event for westminster.

  53. Welsh_Siôn says:

    You may like to take a look at this – a long read. But probably of interest.

    Referendums in the UK Constitution: Authority, Sovereignty and Democracy after Brexit

    Published online by Cambridge University Press: 07 August 2020 .pdf

    (Close the space before .pdf.)

  54. Capella says:

    Projection is that Melanchon’s group will take enough seats in the French parliament to leave Macron without a majority. One policy difference is that Macron wants to raise the French retirement age from 62 to 65, Melanchon wants to reduce it to 60. Difficult choice.

    • Yet we were expected to believe the hard right was on the march in France, according to brexiters.

      Of course not. The left in France, like everywhere, is there to balance the right. But they need a left alliance to vote for. The right knows this, so tries very hard to corrupt the left, new labour style.

      • Capella says:

        Marine le Pen will get an enormous increase in the number of seats for the National Rally party – from 8 seats to 80 -100. It represents a swing away form the globalists to a focus on domestic politics. This trend is happening around Europe and I would be amazed if the EU survives the coming storm intact. National leaders have been astonishingly stupid and failed to address the real economic problems of their own voters and their own voters are beginning to get very angry.

        BBC update

        • James says:

          No surprise about Le Pen, from the bits I’ve seen about the election it was very much domestic and economic issues (such as retirement age) with the left ‘winning’ the arguments and she is to the economic left of her parties main rivals it makes sense that her party will pick up votes.

          Of course, countries are going to focus on domestic politics. We are in a global economic slowdown. When voters are seeing inflation going up and their countries’ economies shrinking, they care very little about what is happening in other countries, they just want their Governments to get on with the job of controlling inflation and getting the cost of living down again so they can pay their bills.

          The EU will survive because the ‘big three’ (Germany, France and Italy) who are the lynchpins of the EU are in the same boat, all are seeing inflation rising, economies shrinking etc. So they will just hunker down and concentrate on domestic politics predominantly for a few years until things improve economically.

        • Yes, le Pen is very much to the left of Macron economically. He may be socially liberal, but he’s very much a right winger when it comes to business.

          Le Pen is just a smidgen right of centre by contrast.

          On the authoritarian scale however, Le Pen’s party is like the UK conservatives with their brexit and deportations of to central African concentration camps. She’s just a little more authoritarian than them, but less so than UKIP, Brexit or the DUP.

          French voters are definitely voting for a more economically left agenda it seems.

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