Preparing to win the next UK General Election

It is safe to say now that the Conservative party has made a catastrophic mistake by choosing Liz Truss as its leader and as Prime Minister. After just four weeks in office – during two of which there was no government business due to the royal commournathon, Truss has taken the polling figures of the Conservatives to depths which have not been seen since the months prior to Labour’s electoral landslide of 1997, a General Election which saw the Conservatives wiped out in Scotland, losing all eleven of its Westminster seats, a disaster which it took the Scottish Tories almost 20 years to briefly recover from.

Truss now has an approval figure of -70 in Scotland, a mere one point higher than Boris Johnson in the final weeks of his time in Number 10.

A party conference is typically a time when a political party puts on a display of unity, that is particularly the case when the party holds its conference with a new leader who was chosen by a vote of party members a mere couple of weeks before the conference. This should have been a triumphant occasion for the Tories with both party and the wider electorate giving the new Prime Minister the benefit of any doubt as she enjoyed a honeymoon period boost in the polls.

Instead the conference, despite the ritualistic applause and senior Tories performatively telling the press that Truss had nailed it with her conference speech and its cosplay Thatcherism, was marked by muttering, plotting and the despair of Tory MPs staring at the likely loss of their seats. In just a few short weeks Truss has managed to restore the fortunes of an aimless Labour party and turn its personality free zone of a leader into the most likely winner of the next General Election.

This has important implications for a General Election campaign in Scotland which could very well be fought as a de facto referendum on Scottish independence if, as most commentators appear to believe, the UK Supreme Court rules against the Scottish Government in the indyref case.

Until now the assumption has been that the Labour party would continue to struggle to establish electoral credibility among voters in England and the most likely outcome of the next UK General Election would be yet another Conservative government. However the rapid and almost total implosion of Truss’s administration and her inability to rally her own party behind her never mind the wider electorate means that a Labour victory is a very real possibility. Indeed a recent poll found that Labour had a lead over the Conservatives in excess of 30% and could repeat Tony Blair’s historic landslide victory of 1997, and most likely prove to be equally disappointing in office.

Be that as it may, Labour’s resurgence means that the independence movement will not be fighting a campaign on the basis of independence vs an unpopular right wing Conservative Government with very little support in Scotland. Labour will be promising all sorts of wide ranging changes as they always do when they are in opposition, and even though bitter experience has taught us that Labour rarely follows through once it has achieved power and even when it does it is in a half-hearted, watered down and limited way, as we saw with Blair and devolution and reform of the House of Lords, some people will still be seduced by Labour’s message.

The key point that we as independence supporters need to establish is that the election of a Labour government will not bring about the fundamental and radical transformative change that is so desperately needed. Labour’s much heralded Constitutional Review does precisely nothing to alter the House of Commons and notably shies away from proposing the introduction of a more proportional voting system for Westminster elections.

This means that even in as best case scenario, with a Labour party which does actually fulfill its opposition promises once it secures its long awaited majority, the electoral pendulum will eventually swing back in the other direction in England and we will once again be confronted with a majority Conservative government in Westminster elected by a minority of the electorate, and just as we have seen in recent years with Tory attacks on the supposedly permanent devolution, that Conservative government will enthusiastically do its utmost to undo and undermine all the changes that Labour has introduced.

Any increase in power for the devolved parliaments which a new Labour government might introduce will remain at the mercy of a future Conservative government. Without fundamental and far reaching reform of the House of Commons, which Labour is not proposing, devolution is unable do what its proponents in the 1980s and 1990s promised that it would do – which is to protect Scotland from the malign effects of a Conservative government that Scotland didn’t vote for.

We already know that there is one right wing British nationalist sacred cow that Starmer has pledged to leave well alone. A Labour Government in Westminster will not attempt to revisit the question of EU membership and will not even seek to rejoin the customs union or the Single Market. Instead Starmer has pledged to “make Brexit work,” which is a bit like vowing to run a marathon with a broken leg. Brexit cannot be made to work in the same way that you cannot make a faulty television set work by attacking it with a sledge hammer. Brexit is in itself a fundamentally broken thing, it cannot be ‘made to work’, yet with Labour Scotland is going to be stuck with it just as we are stuck with it with the Tories.

There is only one way in which Scotland will be able to restore a closer and more economically and socially productive relationship with Europe, and that is with independence.

We also know that Starmer’s Labour party is just as dismissive of Scottish democracy as the Conservatives are. We have seen this in Starmer’s refusal to accept the mandate for a second independence referendum given to the Scottish Parliament by the electorate of Scotland in the Holyrood election of May last year. It is no democracy at all if the outcome of a Scottish election is only accepted by Westminster if Scotland votes in a way which the ruling party in the Commons finds acceptable. We have also seen it in the willingness of the Labour party in Scotland to co operate with the Conservatives, even to stand candidates with links to the sectarian British nationalist supremacist Orange Order, if it means keeping the dreaded SNP out of power. Labour can’t legitimately pose as the champion of Scotland against the Tories when it is hand in glove with the Tories in local authorities across the country.

Tory or Labour, what we are campaigning for is the security of democracy itself in Scotland. A Labour victory at the next UK General election cannot guarantee that, only independence can.


albarevisedMy Gaelic maps of Scotland are still available, a perfect gift for any Gaelic learner or just for anyone who likes maps. The maps cost £15 each plus £7 P&P within the UK. You can order by sending a PayPal payment of £22 to (Please remember to include the postal address where you want the map sent to).

I am now writing the daily newsletter for The National, published every day from Monday to Friday in the late afternoon.  So if you’d like a daily dose of dug you can subscribe to The National, Scotland’s only pro-independence newspaper, here: Subscriptions from The National

This is your reminder that the purpose of this blog is to promote Scottish independence. If the comment you want to make will not assist with that goal then don’t post it. If you want to mouth off about how much you dislike the SNP leadership there are other forums where you can do that. You’re not welcome to do it here.

You can help to support this blog with a PayPal donation. Please log into and send a payment to the email address Or alternatively click the donate button below. If you don’t have a PayPal account, just select “donate with card” after clicking the button.

Donate Button

167 comments on “Preparing to win the next UK General Election

  1. grizebard says:

    Yes, all true. There was a short period during the ascendancy of Ruth Davidson when it looked like the Tories might become standard-bearers for the Union, but that arrangement couldn’t bear the load placed upon it by history, so step up Labour once again.

    However, things aren’t the same now, not least after that shameful (and in places continuing) collaboration with the political right in Bitter Together. What trust can we possibly place in “Two Flags” Starmer? When Blair was in power, he had John Smith’s promises to uphold and Donald Dewar to keep him on the somewhat straight-and-narrow, but what have Labour got now? Anas Sarwar and Ian “Plastic Tory” Murray? Constitutional giants both! {roll eyes}

    It took 20 years from Labour’s first betrayal while in power in 1979 till they actually achieved something, and having seen the increasing democratic mandate that Holyrood has fairly earned since its introduction, and especially in the time of SNP stewardship, how have its leadership reacted? With fear and loathing. How did they in particular react while in the Smith Commission’s Last Chance Saloon? Having foolishly believed they had definitively won, they said “nyet” to virtually any and every proposal they had cynically promised during the first referendum campaign. Reform of Westminster is another idealistic pipe dream that will likely not survive another stint of Buggins’ Turn.

    We cannot afford to have another period of lost chances and a new generation of dashed hopes under Labour. Thankfully however, the chances are that the younger generations have been listening to our warnings from the past, and are not going to be fooled like we were. The only way we can ever hope to be safe is to run everything for ourselves.

  2. jfngw says:

    I suspect Starmer knows the EU would be reluctant to let the UK back in, nothing more embarrassing for a new PM than being told to ‘think again’, although they may use stronger language.

    This does not seem to be the case for Scotland as it looks like they would be amiable to a country which was so reluctant to leave in the first place.

    Also I can’t see England changing its mind regarding the EU, it would require them to admit they had made a mistake. They may know it was but when you consider yourself the greatest country to have ever existed then how can you build Jerusalem and co-operate with others.

    Anyone voting Labour in Scotland are hoping a short term fix (I even doubt there would be a fix) will solve a long term problem. The Tories will be back in power as surely as night follows day, possibly even quicker than they thought.

    • Pogmothon says:

      “I suspect Starmer knows the EU would be reluctant to let the UK back in, nothing more embarrassing for a new PM than being told to ‘think again’, although they may use stronger language.”

      Now is not the time.

  3. stewartb says:

    ‘the electoral pendulum will eventually swing back in the other direction in England’

    Indeed! So we in Scotland have a choice: we SPECTATE as England’s electorate decides – makes its choice (which it has the democratic right to do) – at each and every future UK General Election. England’s choice will be based on how the Tory and Labour parties ‘serve’ and/or convince based on the particular interests of England’s electorate.

    OR we in Scotland decide that those that choose to live here and contribute to THIS country want – ALWAYS – to have ALL the ‘normal’ agency of the citizens of a nation-state. There is only one way to achieve this.

    SPECTATING is for leisure pastimes, not for the development of Scotland’s future in which everything important is, whether we like it or not, linked to politics. Living in any democracy, however flawed, the crucial factor is ‘who decides’! Presently for us in Scotland, England’s electorate and its chosen government to a very large degree chooses.

    There is indeed a challenge to convince those left of centre/’progressive’ voters in Scotland that still cling to the Labour Party as a solution to all Scotland’s and all the UK’s ills, that independence for Scotland is a SUSTAINABLY better solution. It is better for the people of Scotland and, by its spillover impact, potentially better longterm for the aspirations of left of centre/progressive advocates in England too!

    ‘Solidarity’ with the like-minded, with the disadvantaged, is NOT constrained by the boundaries of nation-states. If it was, lots of international advocacy and delivery organisations, including those that associate with left of centre/progressive/humanitarian political values, would not have the highly credible reputation and positive impact that they do!

  4. James Mills says:

    Judge them by their actions not their words .

    Labour and Scottish ( sic ) Labour have demonstrated repeatedly through the actions of their MPs and MSPs and their Lords ( Keir Hardie must be birlin’ in his grave ! ) that the interests of the Scottish people come a poor second to their own selfish Party/personal interests .

    They took the Scottish voters for mugs for decades and , despite being humiliated in election and after election , they continue to act as if Scotland is their personal fiefdom and that the Scottish public will wake up one morning as if from a bad dream and pronounce Starmer as the new Moses to lead them to the Promised Land . Unfortunately , instead of parting The Red Sea Starmer will drown us in the Blue Ocean that is Unionism .

    Starmer , Sarwar , Murray et al are simply Tory-lite politicians who at their core are little different from those Tory politicians they seek to replace . They have so much in common with them that we have seen numerous deals develop in councils across Scotland as they strive to keep the SNP from Office . At their recent conference they went out of their way to denigrate the SNP and insist on no electoral pacts , yet there was no criticism whatsoever of the Scottish Branch Office dirtying their hands with Tory pacts .
    Better Together is not dead but alive and thriving under Sarwar , the poor man’s Alistair Darling .

  5. Dr Jim says:

    It doesn’t matter if it’s Truss or Thomas the Tank engine who’s the leader of the Tories at the next general election

    I’m prepared to wager that Keir Starmer will never be Prime Minister no matter what he promises, the voters of England are so terrified at how bad the Tories are that when an election comes they’ll be even more terrified of the propaganda that Labour are traditionally worse

    You have to give credit to the Tories for their long term planning on propaganda terror, Scotland would be independent now if it hadn’t been for the Tory machine empire heavy duty death dealing terror they pumped out using the Labour party the Lib Dems and every newspaper in the British isles along with TV and radio

    The Tories have England gripped tight, and yes they’ll lose some of what they captured but Labour can’t win it all back with Starmer, he is a no brand no flavour yoghurt blancmange and leader in name only of a party that doesn’t want to be lead by him

    Boris Johnson will crush him like a grape, aye I said Boris Johnson, he doesn’t have to be leader or even PM, he just has to campaign against Starmer and all you’ll smell is toast, Labour knows it or they wouldn’t have begun their campaign of no co-operation with the SNP so early so as not to scare the English, because once again the Tory propaganda machine of making the prospect of any kind of Scottish interference in their parliament, their *country* their England a fate so horrible and loathsome to them the Tories would even win against mother Theresa

    Scotland has a longer memory than England so yes the Tories are likely to be virtually wiped out here but Labour will be right at their back with only at best a couple or three gains, the SNP vote will not only hold up but will increase as will the Greens

  6. yesindyref2 says:

    Well, I’m an amateur comment … comm… err, punter who thinks there’s a good chance the UKSC will find that the LA can give approval for the Bill to progress, and the more the case is airred in Scotland and indeed in London, the better.

    From this point of view the Radical Independence Campaign to picket outside the UKSC, as long as they keep it calm and peaceful, should be advertised far and wide and supported by as many as possible. Perhaps they should get a good few thousand leaflets printed ready to give out, and some good peaceful banners.

    Also Lesley Riddoch’s initiative to have a website that gets ready for the judgement and organise protests is good. But would someone have a word with her and say that making comments like these are her own opinion, I don’t share them, many others don’t share them, and when someone is trying to get the support of the whole YES movement, they are divisive and counter-productive?

    “If it’s marking and copying the timescale and movements of a government, it’ll be a gey sluggish thing.

    which is a little ambigious, but this in the context, isn’t:

    … that the Scottish Government is trying to do this by the book.

    “But the book doesn’t work.

    From other articles I know these are her opinions – well, if trying to organise something to be supported by all, kindly keep them to yourself, or lose the support of a large percentage of yessers.

    • Paddy Farrington says:

      I agree. Added to which, adopting a hectoring tone really does not help. As one involved in a Yes group seeking to get back to pre-pandemic activity levels, I know how difficult it is to get things going just now. People – activists and members of the public alike – have yet to fully recover, it seems: we’re finding that it’s harder to get people back into public campaigning mode, and also it’s proving harder to get responses on the street. We need to be aware of this: getting frustrated really does not help. And that’s before even mentioning the complexities of the political situation we’re in…

      • yesindyref2 says:

        I’m not motivated to go any any of these marches or rallies – they are or will be, turned into something I don’t support at the will of the organisers.

        There’s only one agenda we all agree on – Independence.

        Very disappointed Riddoch doesn’t have the intelligence to realise that.

  7. yesindyref2 says:

    Okey-doke, just to be contrary again:

    … half-hearted, watered down and limited way, as we saw with Blair and devolution

    Activists might think that, but around 99% of the people of Scotland who aren’t activists won’t share that opinion. From the latest SSAS, 8% want to abolish Holyrood, and 92% of us either support Devolution or aren’t fussed.

    To put that in figures: in 1997, 74.3% were very clearly in support of Devolution as we voted YES. And the 25.7% who voted NO dwindled down to 8% in a few years, meaning two-thirds of them are actually impressed enough by the results of Devolution, to support it.

    Message does indeed matter, as is the way it’s imparted.

    Devolution is great, Independence will be even better.

    Are you YES yet?

  8. Bob Lamont says:

    Superbly put Paul – Scotland MUST become independent if we are ever to break the cyclic farce which the UK has become.

    The UK is in desperate need of a Labour government with an Attlee type per 1945, determined to pursue a bold vision improving the lot of a destitute, starving and homeless populace suffering interminable power cuts resulting from war – Only this time the antagonist was the Tories.
    – Instead they have the prospective screening of “Groundhog Day” starring Keir Starmer, with an inevitable rerun of “The Sting” 5 or 10 years later starring the latest Tory Unicorn salesman.

    UK democracy and politics is fundamentally broken, and Westminster has no intention of sorting it as it serves THEIR purpose, Tory and Labour alike – They don’t do reform, only reports on reform with the usual “small print” attached.

    England’s electorate seem unable or unwilling to confront the dilemma of a political and media class who do not have THEIR best interests at heart, those in Scotland are not only able but willing to do so.

    Scottish Independence is now inevitable, the beginning of the end of “Groundhog Day” 🤣.

  9. Alan D says:

    From what I saw of the polls, there is virtually zero movement of voters from the SNP to Labour. It was almost entirely Tory voters switching to Labour. This does present a small threat to the SNP in a handful of seats, especially the ones with ex-SNP MPs. It isn’t credible to think that a more right-wing Labour is going to repeat what a left-leaning Labour did in 2017; entice pro-Indy voters to back them.

    The problem with scooping up Tory voters is that in order to hold them, they’ll have to shift right-wards. That makes it increasingly unlikely for them to retain any pro-Yes voters left, let alone attract more.

    • The SNP gains from Con would likely cancel things out, so the SNP would gain some seats while the Tories lose to Labour in others.

      In terms of a future election plebiscite, seats matter jack doo-doo; it’s vote share that counts. Although under FPTP, you’d expect the SNP still to romp home in such a situation.

  10. Alex Montrose says:

    Blue Tory Red Tory, they’re all run by the dark monied, far right think tanks.

    • Capella says:

      Excellent find. George Monbiot will be getting his jotters from The Guardian with all his old fashioned investigative journalism. He certainly won’t be invited to be a panel guest at any BBC current affairs programmes. Here’s the archive version just in case.

      • Capella, you are aware of my views on BBC Scotland.
        IT is a narrow sectarian hive of the Scotia Nostra.
        Are there no Catholics, Jews, atheists, agnostics, or Muslims working in tv journalism?
        It was Connolly who quipped; @Why does every BBC Scotland presenter have a surname as their first name?
        Does the Kirk run a media college somewhere to churn this lot out?
        It is beyond redemption. BBC Scotland is the cancer within.

        • Capella says:

          Just so – and BBC GB, the parent company – run by the oligarchy for the oligarchy.

          • Capella, I am acutely aware that many many Duggers, and good decent honest citizens of this country, Scotland, are devout Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Jews, or followers of a wide range of religions which are faith based, and believe in the existence of a Supreme Being, an Almighty, the Great Architect.
            Without going into it too deeply, I am well versed in all aspects Christianity and the tiresome tensions and sectarianism that runs through the established churches in Scotland.
            Check out ‘transubstantiation’ versus ‘consubstantiation’, for example.
            The mention of ‘the Virgin birth’ rattles their cages.
            These rival churches have ammassed vast fortunes peddling this nonsense, and dividing the nation.

            I tire of this.
            But Scotland should not be run by any section’s religious beliefs.
            Nor should success at getting work rely on what place of worship you attend.
            That was Scotland of the 20th Century.
            We the people have moved on. But not our MSM, particularly the broadcasters.
            A minor religious sect controls our media to this day.
            It is Unionist to the core, and right wing.
            It does not matter wther it is Tory right wing or Labour, or Lib Dem right wing.
            They are at heart field bosses for their English masters.
            The Scotia Nostra, the Jock Oligarchy who hold the citizens of Scotland fast for their Imperial Masters.
            Well, I’ve had enough.
            Render unto Caesar, but not the English Caesar.

            I refuse to live in a country controlled by an elite oligarchy blessed by their religious leaders.

            • Dr Jim says:

              King Charles is the defender of the *one true religion*

              You’d think folk in this day and age might have noticed by now that doesn’t include most of them, so they’ve got a King they’re told to respect who’s basically got to sign up to being an Ayatollah or he doesn’t get the job

              Very inclusive these Brits

            • Bob Lamont says:

              No offence intended Jack but if I may re-phrase your ultimate point “I refuse to die in a country controlled by an elite oligarchy in another country, blessed by direct connections to their donors, be they red or blue”.
              PS – No God was ever registered at 55 Tufton Street, Westminster, London.

              • There ar bishops holed up in the House of Lards, Bob. though mind but.
                I have no wish to offend anyone’s beliefs, believe me.
                And there is no ‘but’ following.
                Each to their own I say.
                I wonder what Lady Smith, her daughter, and Kezia Dugdale and Baroness Rape Clause are up to at that Be polite to politicians Think Tank.
                Who pays their stipends?

        • Tam the Bam says:

          Well said Crawford!

    • yesindyref2 says:

      No change there then:

      and back in 2012 or so, the Grun ran another article about the Atlantic Bridge.

  11. James Mills says:

    Who will Scottish ( sic ) Labour support ?

    A party which wants to retain and improve the NHS OR a party that is determined to privatise the NHS .
    A party which will retain Free Prescriptions for all OR a party which supports ever increasing charges for the sick .
    A party which supports Free Tuition for students OR a party which is happy to put an ever increasing premium on education .
    A party which taxes the better off more than the poorest OR a party which prioritises tax cuts for the already wealthy .
    A party which in a time of financial crisis increases child benefit for the poorest OR a party which seeks ways of reducing benefits to the poorest .
    A party which retains Our Water resources under Public ownership OR a party which seeks to sell off Our Water resources to private companies who will run them into the ground for profit .
    A party which welcomes migrants OR a party which ”dreams ” of banishing asylum seekers to the far ends of the Earth .

    If you are a Labour voter in Scotland you need to search YOUR conscience when considering whether to support a party which has lost its way .

    • bringiton says:

      The situation in Scotland has some similarities to that of parts of Ukraine.
      Politicians funded by a foreign power whose sole objective is to represent the interests of that power and not the people who live there.
      The UK is just England pretending to be something it isn’t.
      Unfortunately,too many Scots can’t see that and have bought into the Better Together b/s.

    • It is all getting too ridiculous for words. My bloated fuel bill tells me that my electricity id sourced from 97% renewables, generated here in Scotland.
      Yet I have to pay ‘global market prices’ for it because of a war in Ukraine…sorry because of the ‘freed and capitalism’ (BJ) carpetbaggers who are the invisible hand of the ‘Free Market’
      Scotland is self sufficient in fuel, we are a net exporter of food, yet I am expected to buy the daft notion that I may have to do without heat of power for 3 hours every night to ‘pool and share’ the self inflicted misery of English voters who repeatedly vote these idiots into power?
      I am told by their Money Guru to turn down my thermostat a degree or two to save money.
      This morning Glasgow is 6 degrees colder than London….
      Rees Mogg has begun the Oil and Gas Closing Down sale.
      Like any brutal tyranny, England intends to rape and pillage our land right up until the moment we ‘take back control’.
      It’s wot England does.
      Exploit their colonies while the natives starve and waste away.
      Well, the end is nigh for Dross Jack Murray Carmichael and the gang of miserable little collaborators.
      Imagine if Scotland invaded |England and stared fracking in Lancashere, and kept the dosh?
      I will no longer let these idiots rule my life.
      4 Jobs Dross represents everything that is corrupt, money grubbing, and mendacious that flows from the North Brits’ mouths, broadcasters and Fourth Estate Fifth Column diurnally.
      I will tolerate this no longer.

  12. Capella says:

    The website Lesley Riddoch has launched to alert YESSERS of the Supreme Court decision:

  13. Capella says:

    An upbeat piece from Joanna Cherry ahead of the SNP conference in Aberdeen.

    Joanna Cherry: It’s time for optimism ahead of the SNP’s conference

    This is the first time the party conference has met in person since October 2019, the first conference since our December 2019 General Election win – our third in a row – and the first since the Holyrood election win in May 2021, which was our fourth win in a row. The conference also takes place on the eve of the Lord Advocate’s Supreme Court reference, which could lead to a decision paving the way to a second independence referendum next October.

    The Tories are on their knees across the UK. Polls published this week predict that in the event of a snap General Election they would face an electoral wipe-out in Scotland with the SNP taking all their seats. One poll shows that if a Holyrood election was held tomorrow, the SNP would win an outright majority and puts support for independence up five points.

    This is not an outlier. Last month, the British Social Attitudes Survey, showed 52% support for independence in Scotland, the highest figure it has ever recorded.

  14. Capella says:

    More reasons to be cheerful:

    Independence can unlock Scotland’s renewable energy potential, report finds

    A NEW report has revealed how independence could unleash Scotland’s energy potential and be the “equivalent of a new oil boom for Scotland”, according to the SNP.

    The report by Dr David Skilling, director of Landfall Strategy Group, showed that the sector could create up to 385,000 jobs and boost the Scottish economy by £34 billion a year by 2050.

    The SNP’s leader at Westminster, Ian Blackford, said the report shows “independence is the key to unleashing Scotland’s potential as the European renewable energy powerhouse of the 21st century”.

  15. Hamish100 says:

    Oh those were the days. Labour and news media flying a kite before elections.

    • James Mills says:

      …and who WAS allowed to stand for Labour in the Local Election …Independence supporting Labour candidates ?
      No !
      However , a former Grand Master of the Orange Order WAS allowed to become a Labour representative , which is as far from a supporter of Independence as it is possible to find in Scotland today .
      People’s Party supports sectarianism but not Independence ?

  16. Peter Campbell says:

    There is not a force in Heaven or Hell that will compel me to vote Labour ever again. I’d rather spoil my paper (as I’ve done in the past) than vote for them.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Labour Tory and Lib Dem love spoilt ballot papers, it means you didn’t vote SNP or Green so they’re happy your vote won’t be counted as supporting anybody or anything, so they put you down as a don’t know or don’t care
      No matter what your vote is it counts for something or against something

      Vote share matters

      • Peter Campbell says:

        Don’t get me wrong, I will always vote for independence but if it ever came down to it, I’d rather spoil my paper rather than vote Labour. I spoiled my paper before in the early 2000s before I was an SNP supporter and the SSP didn’t have a candidate standing in my constituency. I just didn’t see the point in voting for anyone but wanted my spoiled paper to be inspected by anyone demanding to look at spoiled papers if the result was in dispute (“No socialist standing”).

        • Naina Tal says:

          Yes I used to do similar “no confidence in any candidate”. I thought the ability of candidates put up, especially in local elections was dire and I wanted my comment read out at the count. Now, though, although the various parties put up less than inspiring candidates, I always vote SNP, on the grounds that they are the ONLY party who can win us our independence

  17. yesindyref2 says:

    SGP some good articles reccently about polls. Wings, Labour have stirred him out of retirement with their stupidity and as one poster comments “Wow reading this it’s almost as if the good old days are back.”. On the other hand another blog saves all his “friendly fire” for anyone who is pro-indy, and you can imagine the world media on 1st March 2025: “Scotland Independent” him with an article “But it’s the wrong type of #Independence”.

    Personally I don’t care if people attack the SNP and Sturgeon as long as they save their fiercest fire for the Disunited Kingdom and its increasingly insane and sleazy activists.

  18. Alex Clark says:

    Ciaran Jenkins of Channel 4 is put in his place by Nicola Sturgeon who is having none of his garbage on Scottish issues put in her mouth.

    • Alex Clark says:

      That’s the thing, he doesn’t actually want to hear the answer to his question if it won’t result in an SNP B ad, so he interrupts and tries to move her on so that the viewer doesn’t get to hear her side of his loaded questions.

      The FM is very wise to this tactic after having years of experience with it, she will not be silenced and if they ask the question then they better be prepared to listen to the whole answer. No wonder Unionists hate her.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Jenkins did himself no favours in that clip, it wasn’t journalism…

    • Dr Jim says:

      It’s not big and it’s not clever

      I can’t call this questioning because it’s not, it’s the mischaracterising badgering by the arrogant in the hope of convincing the uninformed and the ignorant of their mischaracterisations, or in street language *trash talk* masquerading as an interview

      They learn this at the BBC school of how to,

      So begin with a distortion then keep expanding on the distortion, then accuse the interviewee of not answering the question by constant interruptions as the interviewee attempts to clarify or correct the premise of the statement by the interviewer so the uninformed viewer sat on their couch at home becomes confused then impatient, the public then accuse the interviewee of not answering the question, which is the result the so called journalist is aiming for and not what the public thinks, an answer

      Journalism today is about deceiving the public into thinking the interviewer is too clever for the interviewee and has succeeded in presented them to the public as frauds

      Andrew Neill, Andrew Marr and on and on, any young person wishing to be employed in future as a journalist should accept now that if they follow this method they will be considered the same low life slime as their predecessors are considered now, so good luck in your careers

      When we hear from time to time about journalists being thumped or harmed “and they were only doing their job” spare a thought that often it’s someone like Ciaran Jenkins, then see if you can find it within yourself to feel sorry for them, y’see this guy doesn’t faze the FM, she knows what he’s trying to do, but this guy is arrogantly making a fool of the uninformed Joe public

    • Statgeek says:

      Seen one of the replies in the comments?

      “Don’t leave us; lead us.” – That lasted a while, didn’t it? Not sure whether to be nervous or excited of feeling the full weight of the UK’s ‘furry’ though. It might be fun. 😀

  19. davetewart says:

    Strange trying to listen to serious answers to questions wrecked by his interuptions, we’re running out of time?

    Until I looked him up, fully trained by the EBC.

  20. Hamish100 says:

    It has been the tactic for years unfortunately.

    The tactic for the tories and labour in Scotland is open ended – prepared questions and don’t interrupt the unionist.

    Credit to the FM I would tell them to foff but we can imagine the press the next day and the tut, tutting by the bbc and the patronising.

  21. [sound of a traditional clock]

    Sinn Fein welcomes Irish Government’s intention to plan for Irish unity

    Finance Minister Conor Murphy has welcomed comments from his Irish counterpart Paschal Donohoe that the Irish government will consider planning public finances in the context of Irish Unity.

    Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe has said the government will begin planning for Irish unity and the impact it will have for public finances, according to Mr Murphy.

  22. Brilliant incentive:—price-can-afford/

    We’re offering a year-long subscription – at any price you can afford

  23. Hamish100 says:

    So Liverpool won over Glasgow re the Eurovision Song Contest

    It was like 2 starving children being asked to perform for a crust of mouldy bread.

    • Capella says:

      Dodged a bullet there IMO.

      • Indeed, Capella.
        We who live in the West of Glasgow breathe a huge sigh of relief.
        During Cop 26 we were locked down for weeks.

        And my rates won’t be paying for this utter drivel.
        Win win for us weegies, I declare.
        Eurovision is an example of what Frank Lloyd Wright classed TV as ‘bubble gum for the mind’.

        John Lennon must be turning in his grave.

    • Dr Jim says:

      I’ll name that tune in two, Nadine Dorries, I bet she worked her wee socks off to keep this out of Glasgow

      Graham Norton will be disappointed, he was punting Glasgow as the best banter city in the UK, and the best and only place for the show

    • Eilidh says:

      I am not surprised. Supposedly the BBC were making the decision on this and they are so based against Scotland they is no way they would give a major event like that to Glasgow. It is not exactly the most important event on the planet anyway

      • Eilidh says:

        Blasted autocorrect I meant biased obviously. Really annoying you can’t edit posts here after submitting them

  24. davetewart says:

    Fully expected.
    The new fusion power station went to Nottingham, according to the mogg it will be operational by 2050.
    I saw that the Culham fusion experiment was said, in the early 1970s, be operational in 30 years.
    Note the consistency, 30 years.
    All we have to do is make a plant that runs at the temperature of a star without melting the plant. easy job right enough.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Murphy’s has become Truss’s Law – Fusion experimental development for Nottingham requiring massive power input announced on the same day as National Grid warns of potential power cuts across all of the UK.
      There’s more than a touch of irony there for Scots paying over the odds already to send what’s in their back yard to the Southern Fuse Box and back…

    • Dr Jim says:

      A neutron star, maybe they’re going to make a new hammer for Thor
      On current technology it should be realistically running by the time Elon Musks descendants are building their house on Jupiter

    • yesindyref2 says:

      I met people from Culham long time ago so have followed fusion with interest ever since. JET was effectively superseded by MAST in the 90s, and in May 2021 this is where it was at:

      The success of the Super-X divertor [on MAST] is a huge boost for engineers designing the STEP device, as it is particularly suited to the spherical tokamak.

      Culham ran out of room, hence the need for a new site for STEP.

  25. davetewart says:

    The old coal fired station is to be replaced by the fusion power station, as an urgent need for the winter.
    The mogg will be well gone before the auld plant site is prepared to start.
    The French try has been in construction for 7 years, programmed to start commissioning in 2030, hell it’s 9 o’clock already, must be working.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      ITER won’t input electricity to the grid, indeed, it won’t even produce electricity. STEP is designed to do both, targetting 2040 as oppsoed to ITER’s 2050. Step will be smaller as it’s spherical ather than a doughnut, and follows on from MAST which was successfully upgraded in 2012 or thereabouts.

      It’s thought American versions will be online in the 30s, and who knows where the Russians will be, they’ve shown a strange interest in most of Ukraine’s nuclear plants which may produce Tritium (I haven’t checked).

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Ardeer would have been a great site and put Scotland at the forefront of fusion energy which could, quite literally, take us to the stars in the future with the likes of a fusion powered ion drive. Stevenston would have needed a bigger drive-thru for Big Macs. They’d have had to buy over the B&M site!

    • yesindyref2 says:

      I think by the way that there is some confusion with ITER between power amplification and power (electricity) generation, so here’s the definitive link from ITER themselves:

      And a related question: Why not design ITER to produce electricity?

      This would also have required an increase in cost with no great benefit to the goals of the project. ITER is an experimental device designed to operate with a wide range of plasma conditions in order to develop a deeper understanding of the physics of burning plasmas, and to allow the exploration of optimum parameters for plasma operation in a power plant. The addition of the systems required to convert fusion power to high temperature steam to drive an electricity generator would not have been cost-effective, since the pattern of experimental operation of a tokamak such as ITER will allow for very limited generation of electricity

      Back to the movie 🙂

  26. Legerwood says:

    O/T maybe but I see Tom Watson has been put forward for a peerage by Starmer.

    And in other news The Herald & Iain McWhirter have parted company. Sunday will be his last column apparently

  27. indy.SOS says:

    Everybody slags off the tories,
    everybody slags off tory enablers ie (the labour party).
    there are millions of people in the uk who vote tory!

    The recent report from glasgow university states that over 300,000 people across
    the uk have died as a direct result of austerity policies since 2012.

    there are millions of people in the uk who vote tory!
    there are thousands of scottish tories who vote labour.

    There are an awful lot of idiots who think they are middle class and
    and therfore untouchable…”i’ts only the scum at the bottom that will get

    Newsflash… it was the scum at the bottom that kept the country running
    during the pandemic.
    I’ts the scum at the bottom that enables most of the idiots who think thier
    jobs are important to live in thier fantasy world.

    As i learned when i was young…in the end…voting for toryism will kill You!
    …don’t matter what your job title is!

  28. yesindyref2 says:

    The referendum problem involving “reserved matters”, and being tackled by the UKSC, is quite an eye-opener about the state of Law and Politics in regards to the “Constitution”, and it seems to me that the edges are very blurry and overlap considerably.

    So from one point of view, if it’s legal the referendum has political consequences – should they be a reason to rule against the LA meaning that politics have been used to determine the Rule of Law?

    And if that’s OK, why not consider as Aidan O’Neill argued, the politics of an electorate of 4.1 million that gives our own Parliament total Democratic authority in every single Holyrood election. Would it not be equally right to rule FOR the LA from a political point of view in support of representative Democracy in an evolving Rule of Law such as we actually have in Common law in Scotland?

    So the UKSC which prefers to rule totally on the basis of Law, does, nevertheless, venture into politics to make its determinations. I guess it needs to make sure it does so fairly, even-handedly, and with due consideration to both sides of any political issues.

    From May 2020, Lord Reed, president of the UKSC and the top judge on the 5 member panel for the coming hearing “Response to a call for evidence”:

    11. Since judicial review proceedings are challenges to the lawfulness of the exercise of power by public bodies, it is inevitable that some proceedings will involve the courts in reviewing decisions which are politically controversial. In such a case, the outcome of the proceedings may have political consequences. It is important to understand that the courts are not concerned with the political issues or the political consequences. Those must be resolved in the political arena.

    That is just one paragraph that caught my ey, to keep it short. . pdf (remove spaces)

    The AG for S has in their written case invited the UKSC to SPECULATE on the political consequences of a YES vote:

    Were the outcome to favour independence, it would be used (and no doubt used by the SNP as the central plank) to seek to build momentum towards achieving that end: the termination of the Union and the secession of Scotland.

    If the Court can consider that argument – a purely political and speculative argument (the SNP might just lose interest for all anyone can be sure in Law), then it should consider ALL political arguments by both sides. And note “SNP” rather than Scottish Government or indeed, Scottish Parliament. That’s disrespectful to our Parliament.

    • “ Were the outcome to favour independence, it would be used (and no doubt used by the SNP as the central plank) to seek to build momentum towards achieving that end: the termination of the Union and the secession of Scotland.”

      But equally,

      “Were the outcome to favour the union, it would be used (and no doubt used by the unionist parties as the central plank) to seek to build momentum towards achieving that end: the continuation of the Union and a reprieve from of calls for independence for an extended period.”

      The referendum isn’t for or against independence. It is neutral. It can be used completely equally to endorse independence or union. It no more advances the cause of independence than it advances the union. The last one for example, was used by Scots to ‘massively endorse’ the union, no doubt contributing to the latter continuing for at least another 9 years.

      And if a referendum is about ‘the union’, then so is every election in Scotland. The SNP stand for election pretty much every time on a ticket to either push for an independence referendum. Should that not therefore mean Holyrood can’t legislate on elections, such as changing the voting franchise like it did?

      If only Westminster can legislate on matters of the union, then Scots must use a Westminster election plebiscite for independence naturally.

      • Statgeek says:

        “The referendum isn’t for or against independence. It is neutral. It can be used completely equally to endorse independence or union.”

        Pedantic point. If a unionist, it’s nighe impossible to endorse the Union. A few of the comments in the Sturgeon interview actually argued for Trident (staying in Scotland), because of Ukraine/Russia.

        That’s the equivalent of arguing to keep firearms, to stay safe from people like Thomas Hamilton. If rUK want Trident, they’re welcome to them. No problem whatsoever. Their problem is that they don’t want their own WMDs in their own backyard.

  29. Hamish100 says:

    The question ignored by unionists – if there is no Democratic way forward what alternatives is acceptable to them? They have they arrogance that is for them to decide and only them.
    The fact is it is not for them to dictate to the people of Scotland.

    The people of Scotland will decide and in a Democratic way.

    Unionism will not budge from pro Brexit, pro austerity, theft of Scotlands resources, anti immigrant ( unless you are wealthy oligarchs) and anti Celtic nations. A vote for labour, libs, tories is a vote for this.

    • If the union does not offer a democratic means for self-determination, it means its advocates support using violence against Scots.

      You can make something illegal, but doing so means that by default, you support the use of violence to enforce that. This might range from imprisonment (which is violence as it involves detention against free will) all the way up to armed troops on the ground shooting like in Iran right now.

      It’s not possible to make something illegal but not enforce that. If you don’t enforce, people will just go ahead and do it, so it might as well be legal. This is why you don’t have ‘peaceful’ authoritarian states; these always come with violent repression. Russia, China, Belarus, Iran…

      Ergo, if England rules Holyrood can’t hold a legal referendum, and does not provide an alternative acceptable democratic route, then that means England is prepared to use violence against Scots to stop them voting. It can mean nothing else. Violence targeted at a minority group (Scots in terms of the UK) to deprive them of their basic human rights. Like e.g. the Uyghurs in China.

      It’s no different from e.g. making drink driving illegal and detaining people – including through the use of violent force – to keep the law upheld. See the Catalan referendum and the use of violence and detention by Spain. Declaring the vote illegal was meaningless unless Spain was willing to use violence to enforce the ruling; which it chose to do.

      Remember, the UK is currently involved in ethnic cleansing, having deported the native Chagossians from their homeland and replaced the population with ethnic British. The Brits are not nice people. Ask the Kenyans… Irish… Indians…


        The ethnic cleansing of the Chagos Islands

        Ethnic cleansing of the local ‘Tarzans’.

        Britain makes me sick. And Sir Starmer, knight of the brutal British empire, I understand, supports the continued ethnic cleansing of these Islands even though the UN has ordered its immediate end.

        • Azel says:

          Part of the reason the Illois are largely over in Mauritius is that, unsurprisingly, after assuming sovereignty over the Chagos archipelago the UK refused to assume responsibility for its inhabitants and forced Mauritius to take them on. Something Mauritius used over at the ICJ and the UN: if Mauritius takes care of the former inhabitants, then they’re Mauritians. If so, then the territory is supposed to be as well.

        • Aye, when Putin annexed the Crimean peninsula to secure a Black Sea base for his navy, he didn’t deport all the native Ukrainians living there and replace these with ethnic Russians. He leaves the ethnic cleansing to the British / English.

          But the British / English press don’t call it that because, well, it was just a bunch of ‘Tarzans’ right?

  30. Hamish100 says:

    As an aside is the SNP conference barred from STV- joke and the Public broadcaster BBC – bigger joke?

    Censorship is an affront to the Democratic process.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Indeed, in the country of England where the Tories are the dominant political party their conference had wall to wall media coverage 24 hours per day, media were queueing up inside and outside the armed guards and snipers surrounding the venue because the Tories are so incredibly popular, yet in Scotland where the SNP are even more dominant and have been for 15 years there’s a wall of silence from the media even though there are no rows of armed guards or snipers on rooftops or Special constable Spaniels because the SNP actually really are popular

      One minute Scotland is a great nation as part of the UK then if we disagree our country disappears from media coverage

      Strange how if there’s an explosion in Ireland, anywhere in Ireland, the British media are on trains boats and planes to get there to cover what they hope is an unfolding tragedy of the kind we know they love to report on

      It appears Scotland must arrange some big bangs if we want to be important enough to be on the great English news, I would say to the English Brit media in Scotland not to wish for that kind of thing when it could be the very building they’re sitting in refusing to report the news, there are many people in Scotland who despise the media equally to the Tories, after all Scotland is an inclusive country

      • davetewart says:

        The media’s operational order for Scotland is

        The news anywhere in the world but where you are.

        I remember seeing Alex and Nicola in public without ‘professional’ guards, the population let them get on with their agenda.

        The local media can’t report incidents that occur locally as they inhabit their protected citadels and watch tv monitors. They show you it in full view every transmission, walls of monitors.

        • Welsh_Siôn says:

          I remember seeing Alex and Nicola in public without ‘professional’ guards, the population let them get on with their agenda.

          Heck, during the Edinburgh Indy March in 2013, I had my photo taken on Carlton Hill by a certain Mr. Murrell, with my arm around the shoulders of the (then) Deputy First Minister and my Red Dragon flag flying in the breeze behind us both!

  31. Alex Clark says:

    For anyone interested, the SNP have a livestream for their conference on their website.

  32. iusedtobeenglish says:

    I’m much taken by the National’s conference picture of the FM in a hi-vis jacket and hard hat.
    Are they trying to say something? 😀


    Irish speaking teenager did not have her human rights breached by British citizenship, court rules

    …Following the judgement Ms Ni Chuinnegain’s solicitor Michael Brentnall revealed she intends to take her legal battle to the European Court of Human Rights.,

    Civic nationalism = people chose the nationality freely.

    Racist ethnic nationalism = the state forces nationality on unwilling people, e.g. Russia in Easter Ukraine or Britain in N. Ireland.

    In an independent Scotland, British people will not be forced to take Scottish nationality because Scotland isn’t racist like Britain is.

    • Azel says:

      I would have thought that would be a clear-cut violation of at least the Good Friday agreement: for me, making Ms Ni Chuinnegain pay to renounce British citizenship doesn’t look like recognising “the birthright of all the people of Northern Ireland to identify themselves and be accepted as Irish, or British, or both, as they may so choose”.

    • Yes, I can understand how in the rUK automatic citizenship makes sense. By law, people must have a state. While I don’t like it that I am a British citizen, Scots did vote for that back in 2014, so I accept it. I travel with my Irish passport now though. The Irish didn’t force that on me, but welcomed me with open arms when I asked.

      However, for N. Ireland, the situation is very different. The GFA exists because N. Ireland is considered an aberration by the international community; part of one European nation annexed by another. While the Republic signed up to the original partitioning, it did so under duress as it had been ravaged by a war when the English invaded and tried to overturn the 1918 election result. In reality, the partitioning should never have happened, and it was the cause of the all the troubles there. If it had not happened, the north would be a peaceful part of modern Ireland with no legacy of division and violence. Only in on the British side are ‘protestants and Catholics’ divided because that is actively encouraged by the British.

      To respect the GFA, there should be provision for recognition of citizenship based on parental request at birth, with the ability of the child to change this freely when they are older as needed. Forcing Britishness on Irish people an an annexed part of their ancient homeland is appalling. Up there with the ethnic cleansing of the Chagos Islands. The excuses given were lame too; Irish people have exactly the same rights as British to education, the NHS etc when in the UK and vice versa. The young lady in question gained zero benefit from the British citizenship forced upon her. They might as well have pinned her down and branded her with a union jack while shouting ‘You mick scum in the north are British b***h – lap it up!’.

  34. Hamish100 says:

    BBC state broadcaster and Scottish Television are silent on the SNP conference in Aberdeen.

    Consider the coverage over the past 2 weeks with Labour and Tories. Beamed into Scotland the English nhs, English education, imposed austerity, financial collapse, labours psychophants singing God Save the King, tories and labour butchers apron everywhere.

    Now we have silence.

    Who decided?

    I hope the SNP raise a formal complaint.

    • Statgeek says:

      The telly’s so quiet, I thought there was a Scotland game on.

    • Let’s not forget the 12 weeks wall to wall coverage of the Blue Tories ‘leadeship’ campaign, Duggers.
      The Fat Owl was manna from heaven for the Brit Broadcasters, the bumbling fol of an adulterer liar racist was never off our screens, especially BBC Britland.
      WE have had literally 12 years of Blue Tory propaganda.

      It may come to blows.
      BBC Jockland and ZTV broadcast English politicians’ warnings threats and lies as though a foreign country has the right to demanbd our submission…because?
      There shall be a mighty party when they traipse out of Plantation Quay, hugging their carboard boxes, heads bowed in shame, when we ‘take back control’.

    • There was live reporting of the DUP conference on the BBC northern Ireland website.

      The DUP won just 21% of the vote in the last NI election.

      I wonder if the SF conference will get the same coverage?

  35. Hamish100 says:

    Absolute disgrace.

  36. Hamish100 says:

    Tomorrow on kuenssberg on Sunday the First Minister.
    Up will pop Alistair Darling- remember his lies. We also have a director from SSE- now under Spanish control but needs the resources from Scotland.
    I await to hear from Martin Pibworth . On Google he is an ex Cambridge man and is now Executive Director , SSE PLC
    Martin Pibworth made £2,489,000 in total compensation as Executive Director at SSE PLC in 2022. £636,000 was received as Total Cash, £1,676,000 was received as Equity and £177,000 was received as Pension and other forms of compensation.

    Scots must stop being so greedy of course and being jealous say the tories/labour apologists. Lord Darlings interests are

  37. UndeadShaun says:

    SSE are not under spanish control, their HQ is in Scotland in Perth

    “SSE plc (formerly Scottish and Southern Energy plc) is a multinational energy company headquartered in Perth, Scotland.[4][5] It is listed on the London Stock Exchange, and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index. SSE operates in the United Kingdom and Ireland.”

    Maybe this confused you ?,around%203.5%20million%20customer%20accounts.
    Your thinking of Scottish power.

    “Scottish Power is a vertically integrated energy company based in Glasgow, Scotland.[1] It is a subsidiary of Spanish utility firm Iberdrola”

    • ArtyHetty says:

      I am pretty sure when I was with SSE a few yaers ago they had an office in Scotland but were very much HQ’d in England. Maybe they moved their HQ to Perth, but it doesn’t really mean much in terms of it being private owned and a hugely profiteering company benefitting massively from Scotland’s resources while charging through the roof for peoples’ energy supply in Scotland. Have questions over Scottish Power being Scottish or based in Scotland as well. It would be interesting to know how many people these companies employ in Scotland, re, call centres?

      • Golfnut says:

        I think it’s the procurement division, and same with Norwich Union, mind that’s at least 10yr old info.

      • UndeadShaun says:

        They have always been HQ’d in Perth, 1st as Scottish Hydro then as SSE after they took over Southern.

        And SSE dont have household customers they sold retail to OVO.

  38. An inglorious end to a mediocre career.

    Iain Macwhirter to leave The Herald after offensive tweet

    The Herald’s political commentator Iain Macwhirter is leaving the newspaper following a racism investigation into a tweet he posted.

    Mr Macwhirter described the UK Cabinet, which includes several ethnic minority MPs, as a “coconut cabinet”.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      It was unfortunate and shows the utter stupidity of twitter, a medium you tap a few buttons and send straight away to the whole world, rather than being able, like this, to check it out first – and correct or delete it if you think better of it.

      Macwhirter has never struck me as racist in the slightest. He has recently however, become increasingly bizarre in his articles over the last few months. And also seems to be influenced by the posters below the line, most of whom are utter nutters these days.

      Perhaps it’s Covid and its mental health issues.

      Peter Piper

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Oh aye, and all the best to him whatever he does next.

      • The thing is, he seems conscious of skin colour and apparently sees it as important. I don’t believe he is some sort of nasty racist, but his comment does suggest he sees people with a ‘distinctly different’ skin colour as being of a different ‘race’ to him.

        People get on at me for saying that the section 30 refusal is ‘racist’. That somehow because a ‘white’ PM is refusing a ‘white’ FM that request, it can’t be so. However, that fundamentally misunderstands what racism is, and ultimately, that’s because racists work very hard on this. It’s falling into their trap. They try so very hard to define the race of others based on their own criteria. The opposite of this is people defining it purely for themselves. Self-id, as per the census.

        Our race is what we chose it to be. It is pure self-id. International law could not be clearer on this. It is the basis of self-determination. We freely group ourselves into races = nations. There are no genetic criteria, skin colour assessments, nose size measurements…

        Anyone saying there are defined criteria for someone’s ‘race’ should scare the hell out of you. Jewish people in Germany could be as white and blonde as their ‘Ayran’ neigbours. Someone is only Jewish if that’s what they say they are. End of.

        I personally don’t look at anyone and see e.g. a ‘coconut’ black person. I see a person. The same as any other. If someone tells me they are ‘black’, that means it’s important to them and well, it’s them making the distinction, not me. Can be good or bad; depends on motive. Decent people will tell you ‘I identify with this group and want to support their civil rights!’. That includes people as pale skinned as myself supporting those seeking to end racism towards those who might be not sufficiently so in the eyes of others to warrant the same rights.

        I don’t define myself by the colour of my skin and I look forward to the day nobody does / has to. ‘All lives’ do ‘matter’.

        Same when I might say to someone I’m Scottish while members of the UK cabinet say they are English / British. This is self-id. We are freely choosing our ‘race’ and that is how it should be. Of course someone like me with freckles and skin that burns in 15 mins is highly unlikely to self-id as ‘black’ as part of my identity, but I could if I wanted. My ancestors walked out of Africa in the end, even if I didn’t have anyone close up the family tree that identified as such.

        Unlike Macwhirter, I would never define people in the way he seemingly did. He appeared to define others. As a liberal, I accept people as they define themselves. That goes for national identity, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, religious beliefs… Anything otherwise is really, really scary

        He didn’t do that here. He made a point of the skin colour of members of the UK cabinet. He seemed to define their race in his opinion rather than them identifying for themselves. That was his downfall.

        • Pogmothon says:

          I’ve been telling people the same basic thing for years. usually with the response “that’s what it is” or “just fill in the form”.
          Why can people not see that ‘Black and White’ are colours not ethnic or racial origins or backgrounds.
          And that the document they want you to complete is in fact racist by asking you to define your race/nation in those terms.
          It does not matter how many jurisdictions they tack on afterwards Black and White remain colours not race, nations, ethnicity.

          I think I have just decided that in future I will be “other” and if asked to expand on that will simply write “Pogmothoin Black and White”

    • Dr Jim says:

      If he’d made a similar remark about SNP MPs or MSPs do we all wonder if he’d suffer the same fate? I bet not

    • Statgeek says:

      Stupid thing to say, but his comment about “the Truss cabinet makes the Scottish Government look hideously white”, is a little strange. About 15-20% of England’s population is non-white, while it is 2-3% in Scotland.

      Of course, the UK Gov always panders to the English vote, regardless, and the London and SE vote in particular, especially if a Tory Government. With London being 40% non-white, it makes sense for there to be a greater proportion of non-white people in Governments formed in Westminster.

      Not so sure why there’s an urgency to see it happen up here, when 4 of 129 (3.1%) of MSPs are obviously non-white, as far as I can see, and one of those is in the cabinet (1 of 27, or 3.7%). Not caring what they look like, as long as they do their job and deliver Indy. 🙂

      Only two obvious gingers out of 27 though, or 7.4%, and apparently more than 10% of Scots are ginger. Oof.

      (2011 census data btw…no idea of 2022 data)

      • John Boyd says:

        What about those of us gingers in Scotland (in later life) who now choose to identify as ash blonde?
        There’s more of us about >10% I would suggest. 😊

      • Truss cabinet makes the Scottish Government look hideously white

        If I am to stand back and look, I’d say the Scottish parliament probably represents the self-identified racial / ethnic make-up of Scotland pretty much perfectly, as you’d expect for PR.

        These words do show how skin colour is very important to MacWhirter , and relates to my post above. Where I see a person, he sees a ‘black’ person. Seriously, when MacWhirter walks down the street, he sees people according to their skin colour. ‘Black person’, ‘Brown person’ ‘Yellow person’. etc. That actually goes through his mind. He won’t be able to help this as it will come from his upbringing.

        He is to an extent racist, even if not maliciously so. Racism is taught. If, like me, you are not told that people with different skin colours are different, you never think about the colour of people’s skin. My parents didn’t say ‘This person is black, but black people are ok, so be nice to them’. They were not racist so the topic of people’s skin colour was just not a subject anyone would think to discuss. Why would you? So I grew up with family friends from across the world (my dad worked as an expat in Nigeria with lots of international workers from when I was 2-7 years) and I never thought twice about skin colour as differentiating us.

        The same applies for e.g. LGBT; unless you are brought being told that gay = bad, you will never see gay people as any different. My parents didn’t teach me that same sex couples they knew ‘were ok and we should tolerate it’. Instead, nobody said anything because they were not bigoted and as a result, I didn’t think anything of it too as I grew up because nobody told me I should. Well, apart from unpleasant bigots I encountered in life beyond my friends and family.

        The reason we now teach our young about these things at school, is to counter what they hear from intolerant people. If intolerant people did not exist, we would not need to teach kids as people are not born bigoted.

        Bigotry comes from the likes of Truss calling my teenage daughter a ‘separatist’ with the intent of making the English population hate her. I attack politicians / governments, she ‘others’ Scots children. A real nasty piece of work.

        MacWhirter encourages bigotry it by the language he uses, because it emphasises difference based on skin colour; he’s pinning racial labels on people and that’s not healthy. You can actually read his words as racist anti-Scottish, like somehow we Scots don’t want ‘black people’ in our government when the reality is we just have a very different demographic make up to England. Scotland is just as racially diverse as England, with the same % of the population being migrants (including second generation), it’s just the origins are different. This is a product of us being a different country with a different socio-economic history.

        • s-s, in vino veritas. My only thought on this Macwhirter aberration.
          Was he drunk when he put this terrible tweet together?
          I can think of no other explanation.

    • grizebard says:

      Hmmm, I have no notion what McW is going through personally, but being immersed in the febrile atmosphere that is the online presence of that worn-out holdout for the Union would likely unhinge anybody. Maybe an escape, some rest and an opportunity to reassess his increasingly-unhealthy dependence on the comfort blanket of devolution might be the saving of him.

  39. Statgeek says:

    Just looking for “When are the party political conferences 2022”, and not even the wiki has the SNP listed. It appears within source links at the bottom though. Strange.

  40. Hamish100 says:

    Still her royal consort or bidy-in gets great cover in the bbc scottisland page/
    She luvs Scottsland you know. Still it removes one more story about the conference in Aberdeen held by ….what’s there name again?

    • Dr Jim says:

      Gerry Adams got more TV coverage even when they imposed an actors voice on him because the sound of his actual Darth Vader voice might turn everybody to the dark side

      The British must be terrified of Nicola Sturgeons picture and her voice, or even the mere mention of SNP to issue instructions such as these to blackout all and every coverage of todays conference

      Has Nicola Sturgeon visited Luke Skywalker on his mountain? has she now completed her full training as a master Jocki able to wield her black pudding supper smiting the First Order of Liz Snook thereby giving hope to Scotlands rebel alliance

      Tune in tomorrow for the Return of the Jocki

    • grizebard says:

      Oh, the southern better-off love the place all right, spectacular refuge from all the bustle. The people, not so much. Apart from service providers, do they even know anyone local..?

  41. Alex Clark says:

    It’s Saturday and for a change here’s a tune aboot meh toon 🙂

    • Thanks for this wee gem, Alex.
      Spent a lot of time in Dundee…lovely.

    • That was great. I went to St. Andrews uni, but fir a proper nicht oan the toon, went tae Dundee where my best mate and sister were studying.

      People say it’s dangerous, but my mate only got beat up once in 4 years* 😉

      *And to be honest, he asked for it!

      • My son went to St Andrew’s too, s_s. I fondly remember the four years of ferrying him, mates, his togs, books, and guitars up and down in my old bone rattler.
        Imagine my sadness at discovering that the Gunga Din in Perth Road, a must when we were doing a piece of work up in Dundee in the 70’s, was no more. Aloo Gosht …mmm…
        Dundee still rocks.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      I’m not Dundonian but instantly recognised the venue, Boots on the right, Primark on the left, and Desperate Dan etc behind, but confess to having never encountered Eric…
      “Helen, how do you fancy being a music stand for me ?” says it all, a lovely old lady with a sense of community whilst the rest of the world passes her and he by going about their “busy” lives…

  42. By the cringe, Laura Kuennsberg will sleep tonight.
    She was a jangle of nerves this morning, with Nicoal Sturgeon at one elbow and Joanna Cherry at the other.
    Righty enough, she had dragged old Lord Alistair Darling of Flipper out of his retirement home in WM to back her up as she tried and failed miserbly to put words into our First Minister’s mouth.
    I’ll not bore Duggers with her predictable Yes Buttery.
    NS slapped her down at every turn.
    The conclusion of the interview was that the Scottish people will decide Scotland’s future, not England.
    Darling, looking every inch a tired old has been, the chancellor who scrapped the 10% tax rate for the low paid remember, while he was fiddling his expenses by flipping which of his two homes were his permanent residence, blurted about keeping the pound, lender of last resort, no national bank…Giessler repeated this nonsense when Yes Butting Angus Robertson later. Robertson smiled throughout Geissler’s Yes Buttery…Geissler’s ‘country’ being England and its colonies, when he quite ridiculously posited that if Scotland were independent, we wouldn’t have the ‘levers’ of ‘the country (England) to rescue us from Truss’ madness.
    Martin, that’s the whole point of independence.
    We Scots would be looking on as England descended into bedlam.
    the benefits of a private education? ‘The country’ is England and its colonies.

    Joanna Cherry was excellent, and Kuennsberg was totally out of her depth, and it showed.
    She was cacking it in the presence of our two brilliant women.
    She’ll sleep tonight right enough.
    Anas got a Yes Buttery free outing on Geissler’s show, as usual, at the close of the most pointless half hour beamed out of Plantation Quay.
    He argued that the Red Tories are different from the Blue Tories’
    Tuition fees Trident
    prescription charges
    Privatising the EHS
    Road and bridge tolls
    Of course Geissler could not bring himself to remind the Cash and Carry King that Scots had voted 62% to remain within the EU.
    That’s that ‘democracy’ irritation getting in the way of the Brit Cause.
    I could go on.
    Anas Sarwar is more of a Tory than Douglas Ross…and that takes some going.

    Geissler leant on his stack of Brit Rags without referencing the SNP Bad front pages…Still if they’re donated free by the English press barons, he can stack them in his wood shed to heat Chez Geissler this winter.
    It is war, Duggers.

    • Legerwood says:

      It was Gordon Brown who scrapped the 10p rate for income tax. I had just retired and paid tax on my pension at the 10p rate. At a stroke Brown had doubled it then he rubbed salt in the wound by doing the rounds of the studios saying no one would be worse off because of what he had done!!!!!

      He made the announcement at the very end of his Budget speech. Tony Blair’s reaction was priceless because he obviously grasped immediately what it meant to the lowest paid and particularly to single women who had just retired. Later it came out that GB had not told TB of his plan to do away with the 10p rate.

      There was such an outcry about it that GB had to borrow money to make good the losses if I remember correctly

      • Technically you are correct, L.
        Brown was chancellor when the cut was announced. Darling took over as Chancellor when Brown ascended into the stratosphere as Temp PM, and therefore Darling implemented the cut.
        Splitting hairs here we are.
        Blair Brown outdid the Tories in robbing the poor, rewarding the rich; both have become very wealthy men since..I wonder why?
        To be honest Darling came across as a jaded man senile before his time.
        He yoo is a chapagne it for himself.
        A Labour politician who is now an enelected Laird?
        We will no longer fall for this con.
        Tom Gordon is first out of the traps lying that NS endorses Starmer today.
        That’s not what she said on Kuennsberg.
        The opposite in fact.
        Lying by omission.
        Gordon’s good at that.
        Time for Tom Gordon to follow his auld mate Macwhirter into the Pressephant’s Graveyard.

        • Legerwood says:

          Nothing ‘technically correct’ or ‘hair splitting’ about it but wholly accurate. The debacle over the 10p cut followed him into his time as PM and forced him to eventually admitted his, note his, mistake.

          • ‘Keys!’,Legerwood,sirrah.
            Brown introduced the measure to cut the 10% in 2007, and Darling did nothing to reverse it in 2008, when Brown as PM admitted that it had been a mistake.
            Sorry for late response to your post.
            You are right, and I am wrong.
            Lord Darling of Flipper as chancellor had nothing to do with cutting your (and my) 10% rate of tax….but the cuts remained when he took over.
            Rich folk had their taxes cut by 2% from 22% to 20%, and we paid for it.
            Sloppy research, as per, Jack.
            Mea maxima culpa.

      • jfngw says:

        Lets have a recap of Tory/Labour economic management since I started voting.

        Heath had a financial crisis,
        Callaghan required an IMF bailout
        Thatcher sold everything and revelled in high unemployment
        Major had an economic crash
        Blair/Brown crashed the economy
        Cameron removes us from EU
        Johnson gives billions to donors or just losses it to fraud
        Truss crashes the economy

        It’s just one disaster after another be they red or blue politicians, is their really any difference between them. Starmer’s Labour seems more right wing than Heath’s in the 70’s.

        I don’t believe Scotland could do any worse by itself, in fact I’m pretty sure if we had taken control of our own resources much sooner we would be a thriving European country.

        • grizebard says:

          Your conclusion is hard to avoid. These days the shine has come right off the notion that “London knows best”. And for those who are not yet paying attention because they have busy lives, that reality should come right home with a referendum campaign, if decently conducted. No wonder that the BitterTogetherists are desperate for it not to happen.

    • Statgeek says:

      Ooh. You inspired me:

      “I chose not to choose life. I chose:

      Tuition fees
      Prescription charges
      Privatising the EHS
      Road and bridge tolls
      And giving control of my future to another country’s politicians and voters.”


      • Welsh_Siôn says:

        See also the stories at number 35 (An advisory letter to Scottish investors, 2015) and at number 38 (Mrs Scott’s aye test, 2015) in the book Parables for the New Politics.

  43. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Sorry about the rugby, friends. I trust we are STILL friends? 😉

    Keira Bevan kicks Wales to nerve jangling opening World Cup win over Scotland

    Bevan kicked a penalty on the stroke of full-time to seal a 18 -15 win moments after Scotland missed their own chance to take the points.

  44. Welsh_Siôn says:

    From OUR Liz to SNP Conference:

    Boost growth by Wales and Scotland rejoining EU, Plaid call to SNP

    09 Oct 2022 4 minute read

    Plaid Cymru’s Westminster leader will say that the economic crisis requires that Wales and Scotland rejoin the European Union when she addresses the SNP conference in Aberdeen later today.

    Liz Saville Roberts MP will reiterate her party’s call that the United Kingdom must urgently rejoin the single market and customs union “for the sake of our economy”.

    She will add that ultimately, Wales and Scotland must rejoin the European Union “together as independent nations”.

    In her speech, she will also cite a ‘game-changing’ new report by Professor John Doyle of Dublin City University which “debunks” the argument that Wales is too poor to be independent.


    • Capella says:

      Watched her speech this morning WS. Excellent speech and she got a standing ovation 👍

  45. Statgeek says:

    Balanced Broadcasting Corporation – paid in part by Scotland

    The thing about comedy Philip, is that your read your audience, and timing is everything. Half your audience will not find that funny, and it might have been amusing if you’d cracked half a dozen gags during the Tory conference / Leadership, but that wasn’t appropriate etc, so people remember.

    Balanced reporting. Their serious and non-serious output is equally crap.

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      The three deflating BLUE balloons are the dead giveaway. The fact it’s a dinosaur is even more proof.

      They’re Tories.

  46. So, how come if I told English / British people that e.g. we should ‘face down’ e.g. Polish people as they wanted to ‘destroy our country, our family’… that they were not like us and so ‘They don’t understand the British people… don’t understand aspiration’ I’d be risking a visit from the police, but when the PM of the UK says that about Scottish people, including school children, it’s fine?

  47. yesindyref2 says:

    Last Herald column from Macwhirter:

    He was Devo Max, then moved over to Independence as he saw that Devo max would never happen (I may have helped a little btl), and has now moved back.

    Stiil the same though Iain – 100% of Scotland, all the People united, voting for Devo Max and it still wouldn’t happen – it takes two to tango and Westminster don’t dance the light fantastic. Independence once gained on the other hand, only relies on self-determination.

    Great comments below the line, and this one says it all for me (I’m not paying for an online sub just to comment):

    This is ridiculous. He is the best journalist on the Herald team and is being pushed out due to some silly comment he made on Twitter. The paper should have stuck by him. Anyone who has followed his articles will know that he is not a racist. He should have been allowed to apologise and carry on.

    Policital correctness gone beresk, we’d better stick our fingers together and our lips shut or somebody will take offence, somewhere.

    All the best Iain

    Peter Piper

    • grizebard says:

      See my comment (way) above, which I could have appended here if I had only seen it while typing away. {grin}

      Yes, that reaction is eminent good sense. Something that appears to have entirely departed the powers-that-be in that dead-end outfit. He’ll be better off without it. I only hope that away from trying to please his now-former masters, he’ll rediscover independence in more than one way.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Yes, I hope so.

        Btl on the Herald has a lot of abolitionist comments by a few people, which get a lot of artificial upvotes (refresh / upvote again, multiple tabs – or even a script), But the abolitionists represent just 8% of the people of Scotland, and perhaps he though they were typical.

        Also anyone who criticises Sturgeon gets massive numbers of upvotes, probably mostly Unionist activist ones. If he uses btl for some research, as I think he used to, he may well have been fooled. Intelligence does not preclude gullibility.

        Anyways, the Herald may well become a victim of its own failure, though when Indy Ref 2 happens if the Herald still exists, Indy supporters should fight back btl, even if it’s just upvotes of the very few brave souls who persist in the face of personal and dishonest abuse, possibly via SiU who have no morals.

    • I used to think he was quite good, but in recent years I’ve not been impressed and I can’t help but feel the mask slipped a bit.

    • “NICOLA Sturgeon insists a repeat referendum will happen next year but there is great scepticism about the means to that end. And even if it happened there is no guarantee that Yes would win. There are now glaring holes in the independence prospectus: pensions, currency, debt, borders, relations with Europe – all far more problematic than in 2014 because of Brexit.

      Above all, Scotland remains hopelessly divided over independence. No-one wants a Caledonian rerun of Brexit. I agree with the former SNP strategist Stephen Noon that the binary, confrontational referendum route may have run its course. A more intelligent strategy might be to negotiate further autonomy and continue the constitutional evolution towards “independence in the UK”. After all, Scotland is and always has been a nation in its own right.”

      Macwhirter is a North Briton.
      And yes, I have cut and pasted from his article to make my comment.
      The man is gone, not before time.
      Scotyland is a militarily occupied colony of England.
      We are done with putting up with commentators hiding the truth.
      ‘Constitutional evolution’ my &rse.
      Revolution is where we are now, Macwhirter.
      I see he got the ‘ferry fiasco’ in during his death rattle.
      No loss to Scotland’s drive to freedom.
      ‘Freedom’, not bowing down to a Scotia Nostra who feign ‘leadership’ of the Scottish serfs.
      The Herald and its Sunday version are right wing Tory regionals now.
      Who is keeping them afloat?

  48. Welsh_Siôn says:

    In other news …

    Supreme Court independence referendum judgment could take ‘six to eight weeks’

    09 Oct 2022 3 minute read

    The Supreme Court’s judgment on the legality of a Scottish independence referendum could be provided within six to eight weeks, its former deputy president has said.

    The court will hear arguments this week after a referral from the Lord Advocate on a prospective Bill legislating for a referendum.

    Allowing Scotland to hold their own referendum without Westminster’s say-so could set a precedent for Wales, too.

    Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland’s the Sunday Show, Lord Hope said the prestigious court recognised the importance of the issue and would want to provide a judgment “as soon as possible”.

    He said: “I would expect something like six to eight weeks to go past. We’re not talking about many months.

    “This is an important issue. The court really recognises that and I’m sure it will try to get the judgment out as soon as possible.”

    However, it may be clear after around “the first hour” which way the hearing is going, he said.


  49. Wee Glenn Campbell has a schlock mock tweet today commenting on our FM’s intemperate language.
    I abhor, hate, loathe, despise, abominate, execrate, feel distaste for, feel repugnance towards, regard with disgust, shrink from, recoil from, shudder at, am unable to bear, feel hostility to, feel aversion to, feel animosity towards, find intolerable, dislike, disdain, and, oh yes, detest, the corrupt WM regime which has killed thousands of my fellow citizens, which is riven with scandals,. corruption, and immorality covered up by Campbell and the Jock Brit media.
    Unlike Glenn Campbell, and BBC Plantation Quay, who have spent decades promoting the destruction of Scotland, I detest a political party built on greed corruption and theft which ‘lets the bodies pile high’.
    Good riddance when it comes, Campbell.
    I’m sure the shell fishermen on your island home agree with my sentiment.

    • Liz Truss called my 14 year old daughter a ‘separatist who wants to destroy the country’. There is no doubt this was designed to stir up hatred for Scottish people in England. It’s the kind of language that leads to violence.

      Attacking politicians is one thing, but politicians othering a minority group (Scots identifying, the majority of which back independence) and saying how they are a danger to the country was the language used by Hitler about Jewish people. He denied Jews the vote just as Truss is trying to deny Scots the vote. After all, if we cannot vote for the government we wish (e.g. independent one), then we have no vote at all. Elections become a meaningless sham with if voting a certain way (in support of independence) is banned and unionists always win, even if they lose. We might as well live in Russia or Iran.

      And will my daughter get attacked if she visits England? The PM sees her as a danger to the UK. What happens if she mentions she’s Scottish and supports indy when she’s down there doing a tennis tournament? Will she get called a ‘separatist’? Maybe beaten up for trying to destroy the country?

      This is serious stuff. We might yet see the UKSC conclude that the UK isn’t a free democracy, but an authoritarian English state. Even if it concluded that Holyrood does not have the legal power, the Scottish people must be given a free and fair route to decide their future somehow. If not, it means England prefers the baton / gun to the ballot box. If people cannot freely vote for what they wish, things will not stay peaceful for long. Our marches will turn into protests. I really hope the judges understand what they may unleash here if they don’t make it clear Scots / Welsh / N Irish must be allowed to freely self-determine.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Aye well said.
      Glenn’s “In my opinion…..” has forever been cover for his Scotland Office’s script, and I’ve little doubt “rust in peace” will follow in due course following recognition for his services to the Crown…

  50. yesindyref2 says:

    Talking about media dishonesty, this headline from the failing Herald:

    SNP President Michael Russell clashes with Nicola Sturgeon over Indyref2 court case

    No, he didn’t, he said something at the conference, but buried in the article it says Sturgeon expressed her view BACK IN JUNE. No “clash”, just utter dishonesty i the headline

    Gutter journalism from the once proud Glasgow Herald. Worse than the NOTW and look what happened to that.

    • Hamish100 says:

      Whose bankrolling the dark money to keep all the unionists papers going. 10 into 50 % ain’t a lot of readers.

  51. The Tories do seem to have rather fragile egos. How pathetic to be upset at someone detesting your politics, particularly when the Tories are attempting to take away this person’s vote, and that of their countryfolk. Methinks they need to grow a backbone.

    To scared standing on their own two feet without wee Scotland and crying when people don’t like them. Diddums. With the brave English folks please stand up? You are being humiliated by these pathetic cowards.

    • grizebard says:

      Ach, injured victimhood is a default fall-back of the so-called major parties when challenged, though it usually comes from Labour in Scotland, who have refined that to a fine art.

      I suspect that Nicola Sturgeon is far more in tune with the feelings of ordinary people, and they are not going to be diverted by false vapourings of wounded feelings in the media from a party that is increasingly wrecking their quality of life. (On top of a decade of damage done already.)

  52. Alex Clark says:

    The BBC have gone on an all out attack on Nicola Sturgeon because she detests Tories, don’t remember much on any reporting by the BBC on this from the Labour Conference last week.

    • grizebard says:

      Yes, its manifest imbalances are legion. Every SNP conference is accompanied by obligatory contrarian sniping from “Scottish” LabCon reps, but who ever encountered equal access in reverse during the others’ conferences, especially the equivalent main party ones?

      (And re which, let’s not forget that the SNP is still the 3rd-largest party at WM and in UK membership, despite typical absurdist FibDem posturing to the contrary.)

    • Statgeek says:

      Journey to the dark side is complete. Red Tories.

Comments are closed.