‘Tis the Season to be easin’

It’s that time of the year again when we eat too much, drink too much, and wake up the next day with a killer hangover, which is just your body’s way of saying :”Go and stay in your room young man/lady, and think very carefully about what you have done.” This is because getting drunk is more fun than being drunk, both of which are more fun than dealing with the aftermath the following day. But it’s also the season for gift giving. Given the Westminster mismanagement of the energy industry and the ruinously expensive fuel bills we are all facing, together with the threat of blackouts in a Scotland which produces and exports far more energy than it needs for domestic consumption, this year a lump of coal might actually be a good Christmas present.

This is also the season when all good supporters of Scottish independence get to indulge in the annual Christmas Day tradition of rushing to change the channel when the heid bummer royal’s Christmas Day message to the peasants comes on the telly while muttering, “Well, he’s not MY bloody spaniel!” This year following the death of the Queen, it’s the King’s Christmas Get That Pish Aff the Telly. According to her death certificate, the Queen died of old age. This is as plausible as Prince Andrew’s peculiar sweat free medical condition. No one dies of old age. Your body is not an egg timer or a certain brand of smart phone. It doesn’t automatically expire after a particular period of time. People die because something goes wrong with them. Things have been going wrong for the Windsors for quite some time, but we still have to endure Nicolas Bloody Witchell, to give him his full name, wittering on about them.

Royalty, they are basically just state sponsored influencers, like having to pay extra in tax so Kim Kardashian / Kate Middleton (delete as appropriate) can model some ruinously expensive coat and use their children as lifestyle accessories so that some sweat shop in China can flog off ridiculously over priced merch that will end up in a charity shop in the not too distant future.

It’s also the time of year when there is bugger all worth watching on telly, particularly if you are of a Bah Humbug persuasion. It’s wall to wall enforced jollity. The older I get, the more the festive season makes me understand why the Grinch just wanted to live by himself with his dog.

The other thing that traditionally happens this time of year is that politicians bugger off home to spend time with their families, or in Rishi Sunak’s case, to spend time with his money. Boris Johnson doesn’t go off to spend time with his family, because that would mean acknowledging that he has one. This means that there are very thin pickings for those of us who write about Scottish independence politics, and that is my cue to take some time off for the holidays. In the meantime have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year when it comes. I will see you all in 2023, when there is bound to be plenty to talk about.


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 weegingerbook@yahoo.com (Please remember to include the postal address where you want the map sent to).

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321 comments on “‘Tis the Season to be easin’

  1. P Harvey says:

    Enjoy the rest & the ‘festivities’ 😂

  2. Helen Buchanan says:

    Enjoy a well deserved rest. All the best to you.

  3. Molly McC says:

    Have a peaceful and healthy Christmas Paul and Peter
    And when 2023 inches in….may it bring only happiness for you and all the Duggers.
    Stay well everyone.

  4. Sheila McKenzie says:

    Merry Christmas 🎄
    Thank you for all your amazing articles ❤️

  5. Mhairi Mackinnon says:

    All the best and thanks a milli

  6. Capella says:

    Have a peaceful Christmas and New Year – but not TOO peaceful. I’m sure we can talk amongst ourselves btl for a few days.

  7. Margaret Noakes says:

    Good one Paul. Enjoy your break from commentating on the political scene. It’s now the nativity scene. Cast as follows – Mary : Theresa Cigar/ Coffey (no problem looking pregnant) Joseph : Rees Pussy -Mogg. Angels : Cruella Suella, Pritti Awful , Dizzy Lizzie and Saint Theresa. 3 Wise Men : Jeremy the Hunt , Rishi stinking Rich and Grant Schnapps. The Donkey : Michael Fabric*nt. (He won’t need a costume) ?? The Bejesus : Matt Handycock. (can cry easily and produces loads of shit) Merry Xmas. Love from Maggie.x P.s. Forgot the shepherds, leave you to think about them as there’s plenty of sheep on the benches.

  8. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Nadolig Llawen a Blwyddyn Newydd Dda 2023 to Paul, family and all fellow Duggers.

    Just a sneak (and perhaps exclusive) preview for you of who might be the next Welsh First Minister, as Mark Drakeford is due to step down at the end of next year. They may not mean much to you – yet – (and, yes, they’re all Labour), but consider yourselves privileged in getting some gen from your regular Welsh correspondent.


    Every good wish everyone – enjoy yourselves!

    • Dr Jim says:

      Seeing as how Scotland’s leccy could be leaked away to Englandland to keep the real voters happy this winter I hope as many of you as possible have lums tae reek
      and the wid tae burn in them tae cook yir totties hot up yir soup and fire yir aran

      WS, I guess if you have to have Labour at all let’s hope you don’t get stuck with Vaughan Gething

  9. scotiahazel says:

    Thank you for all the fantastic blogs during the year.

  10. dakk says:

    Have a great one Paul 😊

  11. Skintybroko says:

    Enjoy a well earned rest over this festive period, looking forward to next year when am sure the current shift to yes will consolidate and increase as the cost of living crisis bites and as England grinds to a halt due to the intransigence of the Tories

  12. deelsdugs says:

    The extended family, not that many of us, are making home-made gifts. I’ve chosen the popular plant theme from the 70s 🕷 🪴 I did request a simple lump of coal, or peat, or a log, I’m sure someone will oblige…
    All the best for a peaceful time away from the tempting brick at the telly…
    Until next year, Happy Yuletide Paul and Peter 🪵🪨 have a magic time 🕊🍄

  13. Dr Jim says:

    Lovely education story in the National today about Rishi Sunak admitting that British means English to him
    Sunak uses other words and calls them shorthand but still manages to avoid the fact that British and English have the same amount of letters so how can one be *shorthand” for the other unless he doesn’t understand the meaning of the word *shorthand*
    Then Sunak declares it’s really about maths, but of course once again both the words British and English have 7 letters each so could not be considered shorthand sums either

    I think what Sunak is struggling to avoid saying in actual words is as far as he’s concerned Scotland Wales and the North of Ireland can go and f*ck ourselves British means English and that’s and end to it

    We already knew that wee man, but it’s nice to hear the Prime Minister of Britain tell those who thought they were British that they’re not, they’re English

    Let’s see how the *faithful* respond to that

  14. Tatu3 says:

    Merry Christmas to Paul, Peter and all on here .

  15. Capella says:

    Stephen Flynn clarifies his approach to working in Westminster for those who expect weekly walk-outs.

    Stephen Flynn rejects idea of regular Westminster ‘stunts’ by SNP

    THE SNP’s new Westminster leader has pledged to make Scotland’s voice heard in London, but said radical actions such as “walking out the chamber on a weekly basis” will not achieve the aims of the party.

    Stephen Flynn said past actions such as the mass walkout of SNP MPs in 2018 to protest over Brexit were justified, but he did not believe people in Scotland would welcome seeing “stunts” at Westminster every week.

    After some turbulent weeks for the group at Westminster with reports of leadership coups and frontbench resignations, he insisted the SNP group is “close-knit and focused”.

    In an interview with The National, he also denied suggestions he will be seeking more autonomy from the SNP leadership in Edinburgh, describing Nicola Sturgeon as the “best politician in Europe”.


    • Dr Jim says:

      If her party discusses anything the FM has lost her grip, if her party don’t need to discuss anything because they’re as one, she’s a dictator

      “The best politician in Europe” without a shadow of a doubt for one simple reason
      Nicola Sturgeon wasn’t bred to be one from a life of wealth on the playing fields of Eton or the upper echelons of Chelsea, she’s a human being born and bred from somewhere types like those don’t even know exists

      Nicola Sturgeon is me and you, that’s why they fear and despise her, because she’s not them

  16. Capella says:

    While the Labour leadereship ban MPs from supporting the strikes, Nicola Sturgeon calls on Westminster to negotiate in good faith.

    Nicola Sturgeon and STUC demand UK Government action on rail strikes

    Nicola Sturgeon said that the UK Government’s refusal to engage with rail workers was having a “major impact” on Scottish services.

    And the STUC’s general secretary, Roz Foyer, called on the Westminster government to follow the lead set by its Scottish counterpart in reaching a deal with the trade unions.

    The dramatic joint intervention comes with thousands of members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) employed by the UK Government-owned Network Rail set to walk out from 6pm on Christmas Eve until 6am on December 27 in a dispute over jobs, pay and conditions.


  17. Bob Lamont says:

    Aye, merry christmas Paul and Peter and all here, may you have a peaceful and restful holiday into the new year..
    I’ve quite gone off the “traditional” festive fare with so many turkeys putting their oar in defending the United Queendom (now Kingdom) over the last year, and frankly doubt they’ll be turning over a new leaf in the coming one, fig or otherwise….
    Union politics is finally imploding, and I doubt it will survive the coming year even after producing yet another Eton mess…
    Craciun Fericit…

  18. Capella says:

    Business for Scotland provides detail on how energy rich Scotland pays the highest price.

    Scotland’s bills are the highest in the world

    Energy Action Scotland (EAS) analysed Scottish energy statistics, following the UK government’s “historic intervention” in the energy market and a pledge that average bills will not rise above £2,500 for the next two years. The analysis, making use of official Scottish energy statistics, shows that across Scotland the typical dual-fuel bill has gone up from £1,375.97 last year to £3,302.45 as of October 1st.

    Rural areas are worst hit – as they don’t have access to the gas network which is priced more cheaply. Argyll and Bute face the highest costs of the 32 local authority areas in Scotland with average annual dual-fuel bills soaring from £1,842.06 in April last year to £4,421.49 this month. Residents of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, the council that covers the Western Isles, face the second highest rises with average prices soaring from £1,754.80 last year to £4,212.57 now. Even in the cheapest area Glasgow City, the least expensive local authority area for bills in Scotland, the average bill will be £2,672.47.


  19. Izzie says:

    Merry Christmas Paul and Peter. It is folk like you who keep us going in the dark times.

  20. Alan says:

    Have a great festive season and sure you will come back stonger in 2023.

  21. Dr Jim says:

    Real anger in Holyrood tonight as the Tories did what they do in Westminster

    Disrespect anything Scottish Scotland or Scots laws rules or conventions, including our parliament, will the media ever show what they did? of course they won’t

  22. yesindyref2 says:


    At one point, they forced a vote on whether or not to include “and” in a sentence.

    Considering the vital importance of the word “normally”, so vital the UKSC debated it for some time in connection with the Sewel Convention with Keen saying why he changed the Bill in the Lords, to the detriment of Holyrood, then in its context, it too could have huge significance.

    Tories also insisted on forcing a vote on each of their own amendments, despite the likelihood that they would fall. It almost felt as if we were watching Westminster.

    That’s democracy; every MSP has the right to insist on a vote. And nobody can assume the result of a vote in advance – that too is democracy.

    Secondly, THIS sort of procedural minutiae is exactly what the SNP MPs should be doing in Westminster; with 45 MPs that’s a lot of amendments and debates and interjections and points of order and votes – and at Westminster it’s not electronic and everyone has to walk out, through the division lobbies and back in again.

    The SNP MPs can and should bring Westminster to a standstill until the Section 30 or Scotland Act amendment, is agreed to.

    • Eilidh says:

      Totally disagree, past couple days in Hollyrood was a Tory party attempting to wreck a bill that intends to give slightly improved rights to a vulnerable group by fillibustering. Having to debate whether the word and should be in a sentence in the Bill is a totally waste of parliamentary time. The Tories at Hollyrood are a bunch of obnoxious buffoons and I am disgusted that fundamentalist feminist fringe groups like For Women Scotland have been given so much prominence in the media about GRA in recent days and to be clear I am a feminist.Channel 4 and BBC were reporting this was a contrversial Bill. Contreversaial to whom – where were the mass protests against it? Fillibustering is a major tactic used often in US Congress to stop anti gun laws for example and often employed by the right wing .Snp attempting to filibuster anything in Wastemonster would not last long as we only have 56 Mps out of a parliament of over 600. Of course the blatantly biased Speaker would probably suspend the entire Snp group for trying that tactic

      • As someone with a niece who recently came out as trans (F-M), I totally back what you say, as do my wife and daughter.

        My teenage niece (French) is lovely and no harm to anyone. She has suffered mentally, but not for being trans, but because some people just won’t accept her for who she is, mocking how she dresses and saying to her stuff ‘it’s just a phase’.. that she’s ‘just pretending to seek attention’ or worse that she’s ‘mentally ill’. Worst of all was when we were chatting about all this with her, and carefully bringing up the topic of hormones / surgery to caution her and make sure she understood when such a route would mean, she said ‘Well, some people won’t accept me for who I am unless I do that’. Those people are the root of the problem. They are the people that backed Section 28 etc. They are the ones ‘pushing vulnerable people into life changing actions that can’t be reversed!’ not the other way around.

        In Ireland (self-id since 2015), most applicants last year were F-M. But you don’t see pictures of these in right-wing British papers, even thought they are at the demos, as it doesn’t fit the dog whistle frighting the electorate narrative.

        She’s coming over with the rest of the family for Xmas. I just need to remember to use the new name, although she doesn’t mind if you slip up – it’s you trying that’s appreciated. This is hardly arduous. It’s not as if I treat men and women differently, my feminist mum brought me up that way. My response to her when we all first chatted was ‘welcome to the club bro!’, which got a big smile!

        Their are issues to address such as fairness in sports, making sure other rights are not adversely affected etc, but they are separate from the GRC process and should be treated as such. The actions of the Tories here makes me sick. They don’t care about anyone’s human rights. What a joke. They care about their own pockets and that’s it. They are just doing this in the hope of scoring some votes. Truly are scum of the earth. I understand some people’s religious beliefs etc may cause conflicts and that’s fine. They can abstain etc, as quite a few people in the SNP have done / been left alone to do so.

        That’s all I’ll add on the matter as there are plenty of articles on the topic in the national where people can BTL comment away on what is a domestic policy matter, and nothing to do with indy, even if insidious people are desperately trying to make it otherwise. This will fail just as all the other ugly attacks have.

        • yesindyref2 says:

          Most people probably know someone who is trans, and some of us directly or through kids, more than one. And from polls, in general mnost of us are supportive of some changes to make it easier – that’s SOME.

          Trans activist extremists have made it far more contentious than it should be – as have their other extreme counterparts.

          • Yes, within every group of people you have a certain % of idiots. Sadly they tend to shout the loudest, and the papers are only too happy to give them coverage for this, especially if it suits an agenda.

            When this whole thing started to be bandied around, I didn’t really know quite what I thought about the issue. However, I made a point of trying to understand. I tested different arguments, played the devil’s advocate sometimes etc. There is a lot of dung going around and extremist elements on both sides carry the can here.

            In the end, it was actually the arguments of Wings et al. that led me to support the reforms because I was prompted to understand for myself. And ultimately, while the whole issue of human identity, sexuality, biology etc are complex, the actual legal / rights issue in hand is an extremely simple one

            Which is why, I would hope, that given the current debate in the parliament, I might state the following, which is dispassionate, simple logic.

            The following characteristics are protected under equality law by self-identification: Sexual orientation, race / ethnicity, national identity and religion / beliefs.

            The simple reason for the use of self-id here, is that it’s of course physically impossible to prove someone does / does not have one or more of these characteristics if they claim to, and those that believe you can do that are not nice people at all historically. Tended to wear black armbands with swastikas etc!

            What is the e.g. definition of a heterosexual person? Of a Christian? Of a Scot in identity?… Someone who says they are. There can be no other legal definition, rather obviously. No test can prove or disprove such things. Not behaviours, dress, doctor’s diagnoses… While it’s easy to define e.g. heterosexuality in the dictionary, that’s not the same as heterosexual person. This is a massive grey area in terms desires, actions etc throughout their lives. Does a single fantasy about a same sex encounter once in their life make them in fact bi? Which is why we accept how people define themselves. Joanna Cherry says she’s a lesbian and gains protection under law for that characteristic by simply saying so. That’s it. No doctor’s diagnosis nor proof that she’s ‘lived as a lesbian for 6 months’ before she gets legal recognition of that.

            Yet there is just one currently protected characteristic – one that’s as old as the human race – specifically that of a having a transgender identity – yet it is currently singled out for different treatment to all those in the same group.

            Those concerned are uniquely required to prove what is impossible to prove, before having that (transgender) characteristic legally recognised. Everyone else is taken at their word, but not the likes of my niece. That is the simple right campaigners are seeking. It’s not the right to come into the cubicle in the loos with you, much as very unpleasant people want to make you think.

            This is simply being corrected by our parliament. If people understand that, then should understand why changes must be made, even if that means accommodations may be required in other areas of society to ensure no adverse impacts (e.g. sporting fairness, doing away with old school ‘shared’ intimate spaces such as changing rooms in favour of private, single person facilities).

            If only the British nationalist media would explain this, but it has no interest in people’s rights, only in attacking the Scottish government.

            Likewise certain right-wing English blogs are not pro-indy and that should be obvious to all by now.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        The problem is that while according to polls a majority are generally in favour of some changes, a majority according to polls is against the reforms as reported, whether rightly or wrongly.

        Which means the Tories are voicing the concerns of a majority of the Scottish electorate, that means the majority will be in support of their amendments and attempts to debate on a Bill which is being pushed through on a shortened timeline before Christmas.

        And as a poster said elsewhere – that’s the opposition in Scotland being effective, get used to it.

        Ross and his cronies are making hay over this, and the sad thing is that they are on the right side of democracy for a change, on a controversial Bill for which open debate is needed for as long as it takes.

        • Eilidh says:

          Sorry!! how many people take part in polls in Scotland?. I have never been asked to nor have any of my friends and family. GRA was known about long before and during the last Scottish parliament election and yet vast numbers voted Snp. That is the poll that mattered so absolutely no proof that the Scottish electorate is against GRA and of course the Act that has now been passed has reforms that have been watered down considerably since original proposals

        • This isn’t true though. You can get any answer you want on complex issues the public don’t really understand. Just ask a leading question.

          Ask them if a doctor’s opinion should be required before a GRC is issued, and of course a lot of people who don’t really know about the subject will say ‘yes’ as they are deferring to expert medical opinion.

          So they in fact support self-id because the opinion of doctors – the formal stance of the BMA – is for self-id. Public opinion actually backs self-id based on polling as it supports medical experts making the call.

          Tell people being polled the stance of the BMA before asking if they back that stance, and they’ll back it. That’s not leading either, just informing.

          If the BMA starts announcing it’s absolutely opposed to what the Scottish government is doing and is very concerned, with this hitting the papers, then you’ll see the public take notice and get worried.

        • According to the latest Yougov poll, 60% vs 20% back self-id, i.e. by stating along the lines that ‘doctors should decide on the conditions for the issue of a GRC based on someone’s gender identity status’.

          Doctors support self-id as sufficient here, so that’s that. What we are seeing, is the very worst form of propaganda. A twisting of polling to suit an agenda.

          The very unpleasant people from Bath also forget a key thing. Demanding Doctors ‘vet’ trans people against their medical judgement is appalling. It’s the very worst form of right-wing pressured medicalisation. The BMA support self-id. That’s their diagnosis.


          Imagine their members are forced, as is the case in the rUK, to ask patients to jump through humiliating hoops to satisfy a baying right-wing mob? They’re being forced into asking questions / demanding trans people undertake tests that they, as experts, collectively oppose, and must feel awful having to ask for. That’s back to doctors in the third Reich being forced to measure people’s nose length etc. It’s appalling.

          So if polling says it should be up to the medial profession to make the call, then that’s self-id endorsed. End of.

    • Legerwood says:

      The UKGov at Westminster would use the guillotine process to cut the time spent discussing a Bill and thus render any scheme by the SNP group in HoC pointless. The UKGov did this with the Brexit Bill reducing debate on the Bill to minutes rather than hours or days..

      • G says:

        I agree, if I remember correctly it’s not that long ago that you reminded everyone of this.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Brexit is a bit of an exception, as it had already been debated in the House of Commons for hundreds, probably thousands of hours. Curring short one debate, wouldn’t raise an eyebrow.

        But guillotining every single debate certainly would, even in the undemocratic Westminster. And they’d have to do it to just about every debate – including the budget. I doubt it would happen.

  23. Hi Paul,

    Thanks for all your hard work writing your blogs, it is much appreciated. I really enjoy reading them, even though I don’t comment that often.

    I hope both you, Peter and everyone else who visits here has a good Christmas.

  24. Ken says:

    Drinking and eating too much destroys health and the human body. Alcohol poisons the human body. Everything in moderation. One of the quickest ways to poverty is alcohol and drug addiction to misery for everybody. A catastrophe. Especially without proper,total abstinence, one chance, proper rehab facilities and counselling. Spend £Millions to save £Billions and people’s lives.

    Merry Xmas in moderation. A better future to look forward to in the New Year. With SNP/SNP Gov and Independence.

  25. ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas 2022. The Ghost Of Christmas Present.

    ‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
    Not a blogger was stirring, not even the Grouse;
    The stockings were hung but the hearth was bare,
    No hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;

    The children huddled frozen and sad in their beds,
    No visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
    Mamma in her coat, and I in my parka
    Dreading the night as outside it grew darker,

    When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
    I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
    Away to the window I flew like a flash,
    Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

    The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
    Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
    When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
    But a miniature van, pulled by eight tiny reindeer,

    With a little old driver, so sad and forlorn,
    Out in the cold on the Eve of the Saviour just born.
    More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
    And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

    “Now, DASHER! now, DANCER! now, PRANCER and VIXEN!
    On, COMET! on CUPID! on, DONNER and BLITZEN!
    To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
    Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”

    As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
    When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
    So up to the house-top the coursers they landed,
    With a van full of tinned food and pasta all supermarket branded.

    And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
    The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
    As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
    Down the chimney the man came with a bound.

    He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
    And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
    A bundle of Essentials he had flung on his back,
    And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

    He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
    And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
    And laying his finger aside of his nose,
    And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;

    He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
    And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
    But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,

    Thank you, Paul, and Peter, and all Duggers on here, for helping us make it through this terrible year.
    God bless us one and all.
    Keep you and yours safe.

    • Golfnut says:

      Brilliant Jack, I have to ask is it your own work.

      I’ll leave my own best wishes here to everyone.

      • Ahem, I admit that my effort is a balderdash version,, but realistic in our Hard Times, of Clement Clarke Moore’s ‘A Visit From St. Nicholas’ I’m afraid.

        His version is the warm and fuzzy Ghost of Christmas Past…which helped promote the custom of Santa Claus and the giving of Christmas gifts.

        Dickens’ ghost of Marley offered a more bleak and damning indictment of English Christmasses Past of course.

        I wonder what Christmas Yet To Come will look like in Independent Scotland.

        I was out fetching our Christmas meat from our local butcher earlier and heard Dross still going on about GRA Reform on the steam radio.

        Further talks with SHS staff on a pay settlement have been delayed because the Blue Tories have filibustered for three days for no reason other than to gum up Government business.

        They don’t care about our Health Service of course, or have any regard for people living in fear of falling ill if talks are delayed or falter.
        Dross and Jack would cheer if our SHS failed; as would Sarwar and Murray.
        They would see that as a victory..people dying of want.

        We sincerely pray that none of the Blue/Red Tories need an ambulance or medical treatment over the festive period.

        Then again, most of them are wealthy and probably have private health insurance.

        The sooner we boot Dross and the Gentleman Farmer Union Jack, Baron in waiting, out on their fat overpaid arses the better.

        Have a great one, Golfnut.
        Tidings of comfort and joy, to you and your family.
        See you at the far post.

    • Capella says:

      That was great! I’ve almost begun to feel festive after reading that. Jingle bells to you too Jack and your everlovin’ 🙂

  26. Ken says:

    Women are abused, raped and murdered in their own homes by someone they know. Not in any security videodisc changing room.

    Abused women do not legal aid or equal rights. Women have to stay in unsafe situations in their own home. Or lose the roof over their heads.

    If women got legal aid and equal rights. There would be far less abused women. They could get away, Sisters would be doing it for themselves, Abused women get legal aid in England without losing the roof over their heads.

    Abused wonenneed legal aid and equal rights. They need Gov help.

    Spend £Millions to save £Billions and people’s lives.

    Sisters need legal aid and equal rights to get away. They need Gov help now. So they can help themselves.Rental Agencies illegally charge women a deposit and six months upfront rent. Even with fin
    financial means and good credit ratings.

  27. Ken says:

    Scotland in surplus in fuel and energy and nearer the source pays more than parity with the south.
    The fuel and energy companies wanted to charge Scotlamd less. The Westminster refused to let them. Charge less for parity with the South. Westminster unequal corruption once again. Taking revenues and resources from Scotland and wasting them.Total waste of Westminster mismanagement,

  28. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Tories in Scotland apparently ‘arguing’ against the Gender Reform Bill as they ‘care’ about women and their safety and welfare….hoping their attempts in Parliament to try and prolong the debate will result in more negative publicity for the Bill, Scottish government via the media…..while all failing to note that Labour, Lib Dems and yes even the Tories have division in their parties too for this Bill……

    As a Waspi woman I fail to recognise that us women, and our wellbeing, is their priority …as do, I am sure, those women impacted by the Rape clause. …and perhaps also the victim in the Miles Briggs case where their party acted as Judge and Jury to find in HIS favour and where Rape Crisis Scotland condemned their party for their ” intimidating and inappropriate handling of the sexual harassment accusation” ……..

    Perhaps they should also be more forceful in condemning their colleagues at HQ who seem to have a habit of being accused of and in some cases found guilty of sexual assault on….WOMEN.

    The fact that no Tory MSP has called out Jeremy Clarkson remarks in The Sun newspaper where he equates his hate of Nicola Sturgeon equal to his hate for Rose West speaks volumes as to how much they actually ‘care’ as a party about women…..so not caring ALL women and the many issues that impact them as women….where, in many cases, the Tories are the ones causing these issues for …WOMEN.

    Mind you it’s a very Tory thing to be selective and calling out something that can be seen by them as another opportunity to try and gain some political advantage (though one could argue that other Pro UK parties are also guilty of this behaviour too)….for the (non) Union……. and tis guaranteed that the majority of the media will be behind them as British Nationalists…..same old same old….rinse and repeat.

    Have a nice Xmas everyone….I’m off to Dublin for Xmas to see my son so I hope the weather stays good and NO snow falls……Bah humbug to a white Xmas……


    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      * so not caring ALL women

      so not caring about ALL women

    • Not-My-Real-Name says:

      Correction Lib Dems , the non recognised party , NOT divided on this.

    • Capella says:

      Merry Xmas to you too NMRN and have a lovely break in Dublin, maybe pick up an Irish passport while there 🙂

      • Not-My-Real-Name says:

        @Capella @ 1.12pm

        Pick up an Irish passport…..tis possible as I have an Irish Grandfather ……born in County Mayo…..might just wait until we get independence and then hopefully Scotland rejoins the EU ……thus an Irish passport will not be required……


        • Ach, go for it the now! It’s actually easy to do. You just need to gather up the correct documents, which are just birth certificates, marriage certificates showing your grandparent down to you. Then they send you a lovely letter welcoming you to the Irish nation with your Irish birth certificate and that’s that.

          Takes a wee while, but is not arduous. I’ll be travelling on my Irish passport until my Scottish one arrives, but both mean as much to me. Ireland welcomed me, Britain made my French wife feel as unwelcome as it could.

  29. Legerwood says:

    To Paul and Peter
    Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year

    And to all Duggers too.

  30. yesindyref2 says:

    Well, that’s the GRR passed, and I somehow doubt if most people in Scotland will notice. I personally didn’t find women were afraid of being assaulted in single sex spaces, nor in maternity wards / wings (they’re not just for women with babies). And of course the timing is right in that way, its passing will go unnoticed with last minute Christmas thing on the go. I doubt there’ll be any fallout in the Indy polls.

    I think the 2010 Equalities will be enough protection and as Ken says above, most women are abused and raped at home, not in a public loo or a hospital or refuge. So yeah, I’m glad it’s done and dusted as far as Holyrood is concerned, now let Westminster challenge it. But there will be needs for clarification and in some cases, re-education, of public authorities – from both sides.

    • As of November 2022, gender self-identification, where no judge or medical expert are involved, is part of the law in 18 countries: Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Denmark, Ecuador, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Portugal, Switzerland and Uruguay.

      As of today, Scotland adds to the growing list implementing UN human rights recommendations (https://tinyurl.com/2b7v7dve), making it 19.

      Britain remains behind, erm, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan on the issue.

      I concur. People are thinking about what’s under the tree. Or if they can afford to turn the heating on sadly. They can safely visit a Dublin pub loo nearly 8 years on without fear of being accosted.

      • Alex Clark says:

        From today you can also include Spain in that list of countries where no judge or medical expert is involved.

        MADRID (AP) — Spain’s lower house of Parliament Thursday passed a law that allows people over 16 years of age to change their legally registered gender without any medical supervision.

        Under the Spanish law, drawn up by the center-left coalition government, minors ages 12 and 13 will need a judge’s authorization to make the change, while those between 14 and 16 will have to be accompanied by their parents or legal guardians.

        Up to now, Spanish transgender people needed a diagnosis by several doctors of gender dysphoria, which is the psychological condition of not feeling a match between one’s biological sex and gender identity. In some cases, they also needed proof they had been living for two years as the gender they identified with — or even records showing they had taken hormones.


        I think if the Westminster parliament goes ahead and somehow blocks this bill then it will only prove to others what we already know is that it is only with Independence that the elected politicians chosen by the people of Scotland can ever truly represent the voters. It will prove that if the Tories can’t win in a vote in Holyrood then all they need do is ask Westminster to overrule the vote of the Holyrood parliament and they will get their way.

        I doubt that is the way to win support for remaining part of the UK but what do I know?

  31. Now back to indy!

    There’s a Comres poll showing 49% Yes with no change on October. This is of course supports Yes being on the rise.

    Keep in mind that +/- 3% MoE for a 95% confidence interval, i.e. that running a poll will, 95/100 times, give something within +/- 3% of the mean by the method applied (which might tend to under or overestimate the real value). 5% will have an even bigger deviation.

    So, you could get 47% one day, then 53% the next, with nothing having changed at all.

    Comres might actually find, if they ran their poll 100 times, that Yes was up by 5%, just like all the others are suggesting. But once can easily give no change.

    Comres are of course one of the least favourable pollsters for Yes, coming in at 49.0% Yes for the year, only beating Yougov at 48.9%. And the former might yet be revised when I see the tables!

    So it’s a good poll for Yes and that’s it statistically.

  32. Hamish100 says:

    It seems wings over Scotland bloggers are never voting again for the snp. The fact that most probably don’t anyway they seem determined to tell us all. I suppose they will vote Tory now since labour, greens and Lib Dems in the main voted with the government. Not sure if ALBA would have voted with the tories.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Wings actually hopes the UK Westminster Government try to stop the Scottish Holyrood Bill getting Royal Assent! He’s really gone full mental anti-jocket.

      Anyways, just in case I’m too busy taking advantage of the 30 day free Prime, binging on Rings of Power, maybe Picard series 2, Jack Ryan 3 series. John Wick 3 movies and no idea what else, while having some moderate alcohol and food with family who, when I mentioned GRR, replied “eh?”, Happy Christmas to all.

      And, to be fair, a special Happy Christmas and a hopeful New Year to those trans people or prospective trans people who at last have seen their dreams come true.

      • Wings actually hopes the UK Westminster Government try to stop the Scottish Holyrood Bill getting Royal Assent!

        This would naturally follow from said English right-wing site backing a vote for unionist parties ahead of May 2021.

        • Guybrush Threepwood says:

          Wings supports the following:

          Universal healthcare.

          Free tuition fees.

          Social housing programmes.

          Humane and compassionate immigration laws.

          Strong employment laws.

          A cradle-to-grave welfare system.

          etc, etc.

          If those are “right-wing” positions, then you clearly don’t know much about politics. Let’s not become Americanised, whereby identity politics becomes the defining characteristic of someone’s political leanings.

          There are plenty of people who support GRR with right-wing economic views. This is not a left, right issue.

          • dakk says:

            Whether Campbell supports any of that is irrelevant.

            He patently doesn’t support independence for Scotland or he wouldn’t have been promoting the pile of crap that Sturgeon framed Salmond.

            He’s no friend of Scotland.

          • grizebard says:

            You punt this micro-manifesto as if it’s a political platform, but where was the action on the ground to meet all the lofty words? Afraid maybe that the “Wings Party” (that never was) might just possibly get even less support from real people than those alleged supporters of independence who, however fruitlessly, were at least willing to try?

            As the Good Book says, one judges a tree by the fruit it bears, not by the sales pitch of its vendor.

            • Welsh_Siôn says:

              As it’s that time of year – a Christmas cracker type ‘joke’.

              A: What does the ‘Wings Party’ have in common with a penguin?
              B: Dunno.
              A: It cannae fly.

              And on that note …

  33. Bob Lamont says:

    I note after HMS James Smith’s attempt at it being copied on the UK Webpage many hours ago, a new headline piece has appeared on the UK page with the same source bearing the same headline “Changing gender to be made easier in Scotland” but 14 minutes old…
    I go to archive it and lo, archived 2 hours ago, then at an hour old…

    If ever confirmation were needed of HMG political propaganda games in play over Holyrood’s enactment of global GRA amendments, Pacific Quay’s use of their Tardis to keep any old keech they create to appear current days after the event takes some beating…..

    • Stephen McKenzie says:

      Oh, how I remember BBC Scotland’s involvement in Stewart Stevenson’s resignation as SNP Scottish Transport Minister in 2010 and BBC Scotland’s manipulation of Web Page time stamps to try and prove that “they” had forecast heavy snow much earlier than their earlier weather broadcasts which were for snow flurries. Of course, more astute people has already taken screen shots!

      It was clumsy and deceitful even by their standards and it was so obvious what they were up to. Never trusted them after that.

      • Bob Lamont says:

        Aye, but the decision to promote this piece as lead on the UK Webpage is BBC HQ’s to make – This not only demonstrates the collusion within the BBC, but points to London as the originator of this disgraceful propaganda war in Scotland.
        No offence intended to those affected by these amendments, but the numbers involved must be tiny, and yet it has all been blown out of proportion with Scotland being portrayed in the UK as rogue state, whilst other countries simply put it into Law with little fuss.

        At the time of writing the article is still in prime spot labelled 28 minutes old….. A full 16 hours after the version referred to in my post.
        You do have to wonder if English readers of the UK site will have that “WTF ?” moment over this time-shifting by Pacific Quay.

        As we’ve seen so often from HMS James Cook, such promotions serve also to knock news items off the page those in power would rather not see publicised…

        Glenn Campbell’s bluntly ridiculous “Analysis” prepares the ground for legal challenge by HMG, as already indicated by the State of a Secretary for Flounce in Scotland, the old “Look… a squirrel” game has months to run yet on this subject…..

  34. Dr Jim says:

    In reply to the passing of the GRA bill Alister Jack secretary of state against Scotland said “If the UK government decide to overturn this bill then we will, that’s why Scotland has two governments”

    And there we have it in Jack red white and blue, Scotland’s not a country if we say it’s not
    Whether you’re in favour or against this proposition or any other, it makes no difference, the parliament of Scotland, the representatives we vote for, and we the people of Scotland mean nothing if England decides it so

    Wings Alba Tories, same thing, destructive propagandists

    • Guybrush Threepwood says:

      “Wings Alba Tories, same thing, destructive propagandists.”

      That’s rather disingenuous considering several SNP politicians also voted against the bill, including the very talented Ash Regan.

      P.S Three Tory MSPs supported the bill.

      • Dr Jim says:

        Everyone who’s genuine knows exactly what I meant, only those who would choose to deliberately misunderstand are such persons that would make a statement like yours, thus sticking your size boys large right in it

    • Guybrush Threepwood says:

      Regan, Ash (SNP)
      Thomson, Michelle (SNP)
      Callaghan, Stephanie (SNP)
      Ewing, Annabelle (SNP)
      Ewing , Fergus (SNP)
      Fairlie, Jim (SNP)
      Gibson, Kenneth (SNP)
      Maguire, Ruth (SNP)
      Mason, John (SNP)

      Do you consider the above (SNP) politicians to be destructive propagandists?

      This once fine blog has become nothing more than an echo-chamber. A Borg-like hive mind – resistance is futile. To exist in an echo chamber and only talk to people with whom we agree is fruitless.

      • Dr Jim says:

        And still you twist the truth

      • I’ll see my trans niece (F-M) for the first time face to face since she came out as a he. She and family are over from France to see us for Christmas.

        Should I ask her for proof she’s lived as a man for 2 years + to provide a doctor’s diagnosis before I use the new name she wants, or am I ok to just accept her word that she’s trans?

        What would you do in my situation?

  35. Golfnut says:

    That’s a pretty bold statement, challenging the bill in the courts is what he means of course though on what grounds I can only guess at.
    Retribution is going to fun.

    • Alex Clark says:

      They will say that it impinges on the Equality Act and that is a reserved matter. A very full explanation of this possible route to Westminster blocking the bill was written this week in the UK Constitution Law blog.


      • Golfnut says:

        Thanks Alex👍

      • yesindyref2 says:

        It’s quite disgusting that some dude, Alister Jack, or Bobbin’ Jack as I call him giving him some history well above and beyond what he deserves, one single guy, who thinks he is the colonial governor of Scotland, can prohibit the duly elected Presiding Officer of the duly elected Scottish Parliament from submitting a Bill, passed by that aforesaid duly elected Parliament, for Royal Assent, as long as he says what provision he doesn’t like. And this dictator doesn’t even have to go to court to do so. It makes a mockery of Devolution.


        That’s in addition to the normal way for the Law Officers to refer it to the UKSC.

        “I, Alister Jack, don’t like your Bill, and that’s the reason I’m vetoing it, so there. Now, bow down to your Imperial master, you serfs.”.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        Meanwhile, seems to me more are questioning the judgements of the UKSC, with Scotland being the driver for that “horizontal dispute (i.e., when the UK legislature and judiciary are pitted against one another)” versus “vertical dispute between the UK and the devolved governments”, with this ending:

        This sits uncomfortably with settled caselaw and may open the Court’s textual approach to accusations of being ‘a false aura of objectivity’.


        Personally I think the UKSC is regularly and increasingly inconsistent when it comes to Scotland. Perhaps what’s needed is an Outer and Inner Court of the UKSC, with that 5 judge out of 12 judge referendum referral judgement, being subject on request perhaps, to a full review / appeal by the full 11 out of 12 (for an odd number) judges. Or indeed by a completely different set of judges, as in Scotland.

        • yesindyref2 says:

          Summing that up by the way, it’s one rule for them, and another rule for us:

          “Know your place you subservient, errr, Jocks”.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Anyways, having spent some time catching up, this first sentence of a comment btl is an interesting one:

      If I live to be 100, I will never understand why the SNP have squandered so much political capital on this divisive issue.


      and the simple reply is mental health, and lowering the suicide rate of those affected – which might increase the chances of them living to be 100. Something the UK Government might like to keep in mind if it considers delaying Royal Assent for this Bill for political purposes.

      Very interesting article by the way, much about amendments like the “sex criminals” one being struck down for being incompetent in court and hence voted out, then a competent alternative SNP / Green amendment voted in in its place. Once a Bill is an Act I think it’s only the incompetent parts that can be negated in court, the rest stands, but for Royal Assent it is, quite logically really, the whole Bill is sent back for consideration.

    • grizebard says:

      Aye, they have a political death-wish, I think. Driven by increasing panic as one sure-fire way of thwarting independence after another drives ever more support towards it.

      • yesindyref2 says:

        This is quite interesting in the Herald:

        Speaking to The Herald, Dr Andrew Tickell, devolved law expert at Glasgow Caledonian University, said: …

  36. Dr Jim says:

    The Council of Europe and the UN welcome the passing of the gender reform bill in the Scottish parliament, see the National newspaper moments ago

    Again I say, it’s not whether you approve or disapprove of the bill, either you agree with the principle of democracy in the Scottish parliament or you’re an English nationalist

    Because remember, in Rishi Sunak’s own words British is shorthand for English

  37. dakk says:

    Campbell showed where his allegiances had come to rest with the absurd Sturgeon framed Salmond pish.

    Just another wee jock shapeshifter.

  38. Ken says:

    Jack will no5 have time to do anything. False rhetoric.The Tories will be gone within a year.

    Abused women need equal rights and legal aid to get away from abusive situations. Sisters could be doing it for themselves. They need Gov help. The abusers know it too.

    There would be less abused women if women hit kegal aidand equal rights. Gov action is needed now so women can keep the roof over their head and live in peace.

    Women get legal aid in England to keep a roof ove4 their heads.

    Spend £Millions to save £Billions. Otherwise women cannot get out of abusive situations, without equal rights and legal aid. The Court system takes too long. It can take years and cost £thousands. Woman canno5 get out of abusive situations. The abusers know it too. So the abuse continues indefinitely. The abuser knows they can get away with it. Too many do.

  39. Ken says:

    Typos gremlins in the system. Obscure the box.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      On the right hand side of the box there’s a triangle of 6 dots, hover the mouse over it till you get the arrowss, then left click and hold, and drag it down. Voila, you can see what’s in the box!

  40. UndeadShaun says:

    As Napoleon said, “never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake”…

    “Sunak says it is ‘completely reasonable’ for UK government to consider case for blocking Scotland’s gender recognition bill”

    And as Obi Wan said, “Strike me down and I’ll grow more powerful than you can possibly imagine”

    If Sunak is fruit loop enough to strike down the bill, support for Indy will grow more powerful, who knows, maybe we will see over 70% by time we have a vote on it!

    And Sunak obiviously has not read Sun Tzu “Thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory:

    1.He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.”

    • Pogmothon says:

      If you patiently sit by the river, in time the body of your enemy will float past.

      Si vis pacem, para bellum.

      Ah! which wisdom to choose, Aye, aye, chust so, chust so, which indeed ????

  41. Capella says:

    Joanna Cherry spells out why she can’t support the GRR.

    Joanna Cherry: Here’s why I couldn’t support gender reform bill

    I was a leading voice in the fight against Brexit. I led the court action that stopped Boris Johnson’s unlawful prorogation of the UK Parliament and I championed the need for a plan B including a Holyrood referendum bill if the Tories refused to grant a Section 30 order for a second indyref.

    But I cannot support this bill. In maintaining that position, I am not breaking party policy. The SNP have never endorsed at our conference a system of self-ID, and it was not what was promised in the manifesto for the 2021 election.

    What the manifesto promised was to improve and simplify the process by which trans people may obtain legal recognition so that the trauma associated with that process was reduced. It also promised to work with women’s groups and to address any concerns about the reform through informed and respectful discussion. To be frank, I do not think this has happened.


    • Legerwood says:

      As usual blows her own trumpet first then skips the inconvenient bits that would give a fuller picture.

      For example, she says she could not support it because it was not in the 2021 manifesto. It was, however, in the 2016 manifesto and the process was ongoing at the time of the 2021 election. Are Gov supposed to discard previous manifesto promises when the process to complete the promise is still ongoing at the next election?

      The Gender Recognition Act 2004 was passed by the UK Gov and adopted via a Sewel Convention by the Labour- Lib Dem Coalition led by Jack McConnell in Holyrood.

      In 2015-16 the HoC Equalities Committee carried out an investigation into GRA 2004 during which they took evidence from the trans community which showed the distress, stress and economic cost caused by the process set out in GRA 2004. It was the recommendation of the Committee that the process should be reformed.

      In 2016 all parties in Holyrood included in their manifesto for the Holyrood elections a promise to reform the process.

      The UKGov acting for England and Wales undertook a consultation on the process. The Scot Gov undertook two public consultation the 2nd of which was based on a new draft Bill. This second consultation ended in March 2020. By the 2021 election that process of reform was still ongoing and people knew self-id was the major part of that reform. They returned the SNP to power.

      • Capella says:

        TBF the excerpt I quoted is from half way down the article i.e. she doesn’t start off with that. I quoted those paragraphs as they seemed to summarise her point of view – i.e. that the promise to work with women’s groups and to address any concerns about the reform through informed and respectful discussion was not fulfilled.

        • Legerwood says:

          But Shirley- Anne Sommerville, who was the minister in charge of the process at the time, did consult with women’s groups but clearly not the ones the GC side wanted her to consult such as For Women Scotland who went on and on complaining about not meeting the Minister even getting Tory MSPs to ask questions on their behalf. For Women Scotland criticised the groups she did consult saying they were not independent because they received funding from the Scottish Gov thus calling into question the integrity of groups such as Rape Crisis Scotland an organisation that has done sterling work in supporting women.

          Strangely For Women Scotland did not make any submission to the first public consultation but many women’s groups did. I suspect they only came into being some time after that. Here is a link to the analysis of the first public consultation. Annex 1 contains the list of groups who did submit a response. In all there were 165 groups responding and 15,532 individuals.

          • Capella says:

            Yes I participated in the consultations over the past few years. The first one was so flawed it had to be done again. The majority of responses were from groups outside Scotland, most of them lobby groups.

            Women’s Aid and Rape Crisis Scotland are dependent now on Scottish Government funding and to qualify for that funding they must accept the policy and incorporate it into their guidelines.

            I worked with Women’s Aid in the 70s when it was setting up and part of my job was raising funds because there was no government recognition then of the need for safe refuges. I also turned out in the middle of the night to collect terrified women with their children and bin liners of luggage to take them to the shelters. I won’t bore you with the catalogue of horrors suffered by those women, the woman blinded by an acid attack so that she could never see her children again, the husband outside one shelter shooting out the windows with a rifle, and so on. Men were definitely not welcome and the location of shelters was kept secret. But of course the concept of “trans women” hadn’t been invented then so the issue never arose.

            • Legerwood says:

              I am surprised you say it was flawed. The majority of the 15,697 responses – 48% were from within Scotland, 38% from rUK were from rUK and 13% from outwith the UK. The responses from groups totalled 165 and from what I could see reading the Annex to the report the majority of the groups came from within Scitland and covered a whole range of groups from Children’s groups to churches/religious groups to legal organisations and Universities as well as women’s groups. In short groups covering the whole spectrum of Civic Scotland.

              Based on the responses the SG published another draft Bill and consulted on that. This time there was an all too obvious concerted effort on the part of one or two women’s groups to get individuals to submit pre-pared responses which negates the purpose of the consultation. When it came to the analysis of the more than 17,000 responses this block of responses was only too obvious but thankfully did not distort the overall consultation.

              • Capella says:

                Criticism at the time focused on the preponderance of responses coming from outside Scotland. Why, in a consultation on changing Scottish law, would you seek the majority of views from outside Scotland.

                Second, the imbalance of responses. There are 20 responses form “Women’s Groups”. Of these, three are from Women’s Aid organisations which should surely be in the 3rd Sector category with the others. If they are funded by the Scottish Government they must comply with the policy in order to get funding and so will not give an independent response. A fourth “Engender” is a trans rights advocacy group. That leaves 16 responses from Women’s Groups while there are 28 from Trans groups, many of them from outside Scotland and 25 from LGBT groups (the T also standing for trans). The others are , as you say, from a broad range of civic groups.

                The consultation was run by a private consultancy which name I forget. I watched the Holyrood committee questioning of the representative the firm who was challenged on aspects of the consultation. I would find the relevant clip but it’s hardly Xmas eve viewing!

                • Legerwood says:

                  There was a total of 15697 responses of which 15532 were from individuals and 165 from groups.
                  49% of the respondents came from Scotland.
                  38% from rUK
                  13% from outwith the UK.
                  The overwhelming number of responses were from individuals who felt strongly enough about the subject to respond. In any consultation the individual responses are every bit as important and possibly more so than those from groups.
                  60% of the responses supported the idea of self-id.

          • Consultation with women’s groups* important for understanding and managing any implications of the bill. Not for the fundamental change being made, which was simply to allow trans people to gain protection under law by self-id in the same way you can for the other protected characteristics of sexual orientation, race / ethnicity, national identity, and religion / beliefs. It is impossible to prove you are any of these, just like it is to prove you are trans. There is no way for a doctor to do this either. There is no test out there that can separate me, a heterosexual Scottish (identifying), half ethnically Irish Jedi, from an English transwoman of part Welsh ethnicity who’s catholic. Asking people to prove such things is asking only to humiliate them, and requiring medical professionals to do so could/can only make them extraordinarily uncomfortable and embarrassed.

            The BMA back the reforms because, in their opinion, they can’t diagnose someone as trans anymore than they can diagnose gay or Irish, except by self-id. There is not even an agreed definition of gender dysphoria# for them to work with, and many trans people are not dysphoric (distressed at their condition to the point of being ill) anyway. No more so than someone who might e.g. wish a breast reduction to help their back.

            And that’s before neither trans people, nor those currently assessing them, being provided with a bullet point list of what actually constitutes ‘living as the opposite sex/gender’ to judge if the former have been doing so for two years. Nope, both have to just imagine what this constitutes to decide whether said trans person has been ticking the invisible boxes concerned.

            Ultimately, it is impossible to use the GRC process itself for ‘fixing’ any new conundrums the issuing of GRCs creates, including things like effects on sex based rights, fairness in sports etc. Laurel Hubbard’s exist no matter the GRC process and making this harder/easier does not make them go away. It is the knock on effects where discussions with different groups / stakeholders are important, and such discussions have been happening and will continue to as needed.

            Making the process slightly easier will just, based on what’s happened elsewhere, mean slightly more GRCs being issued, but the numbers will remain tiny. Self-id Ireland approved 195 last year*, most of which were given to women seeking to be treated as men legally. You are more likely to encounter a four leaved clover in the loos.

            Incidentally, I found using my (F-M) ‘nephew’s’ new name really easy last night. Course you’ll slip up at times, but that’s no bother at all; it’s the effort that counts.


            *Men are equally affected here in a whole host of areas, even in terms of ‘safe spaces’. While male attacks on women are of course the biggest problem, there are many male victims of female sexual assault, but the scale of this is highly underreported due to men being supposed to be the ‘strong ones’ who that should not have happened to. That and a male groper is reported while a female one is supposed to be laughed off. I have been the subject of such unwanted female attention myself in my younger days. Those doing it know they can get away with it because of sexist societal attitudes.

            And of course transpeople are attacked themselves, and one of the most victimised groups here, mainly due to being on the fringes of society. A transwoman rape victim going to the police station is in many ways harder than for a woman to do, worrying that they might be sniggered at or maybe they had not even come out, so are even more ashamed at family finding out or something. Papers filled with headlines about them not being welcomed at rape crisis centres is hardly going to help things here either.

            • Legerwood says:

              Under the system put in place by the 2004 Act only around 5000 GRCs have been issued over 18 years. However it is estimated that 150,000 to 200,000 people are currently living in a trans identity – they have if you like self-self-ID The Equalities Act allows them to access lots of ‘female only spaces’ without a GRC. I am quite certain though that they were using toilets etc without anyone noticing. Why would you? The only thing I notice in public toilets are the dirty beggars who dont wash their hands before leaving.

              These changes to the GRC process in no way impinge on my rights or the rights of women oin general.

              Enjoy your family Christmas

              • Yes, and to clarify, ‘Men are equally affected here in a whole host of areas’ wasn’t maybe the best way of wording. What I meant was any effects are applicable to us all, rather than being about a specific group, and, as you note they have no impact on our individual rights. But the right-wing media has insidiously chosen ‘women’s rights’ as that’s the easiest to dog whistle about with images of burly fake traswomen storming Tesco’s loos the length of the country. I have a wife and teenage daughter and we all chat about these issues, with such chats helping me form my own views.

        • Eilidh says:

          They have worked with Women’s groups such as Women’s Aid but obviously not the ones Joanna wholeheartedly endorses such as For Women Scotland which in my opinion are a fundamentalist feminist group

          • Capella says:

            What is a “fundamentalist feminist” ?

            • Legerwood says:

              Doesn’t wear make-up? Or a corset? Who knows?

            • Eilidh says:

              Fundamentalist has many meanings but I was not using it in the religious sense but as I see it groups like For Women Scotland have a strict interpretation of biological sex and gender which may be linked to right wing ideology. Here is a link to article about feminism and Fundamentalistism.

              • Capella says:

                Thx Eilidh – I read the article with interest and I have read many similar articles in recent years.
                I don’t agree with its basic premise that the biological definition of sex is in any way “right wing”. As a life long socialist I disagree. The biological definition of sex is quite simple. You either have XX chromosomes (female) or XY chromosomes (male). There is a very small (< 2%) group of people who are intersex but even they differ according whether they are male of female. Also, most of them resent being dragged into the trans argument.

                97% of violent crimes are committed by men and women are the victim in approx half of those crimes. It is not because they are "trans" that women are concerned about opening access to safe spaces to trans women. It is because they are men.

                • EilidhEilidh says:

                  having a GRC does not change the risk men could dress as women ow and get into womens safe space

                  • Capella says:

                    They could not demand access to women’s prisons, hospital wards, YWCA dormitories, girl guide camps, women’s refuges and other female only organisations. They could not sit on boards in seats reserved for women nor compete in sports in women’s categories. They would be challenged if walking into women’s toilets and changing rooms (this is breach of the peace “acting in a manner likely to cause fear and alarm”).

                    • Legerwood says:

                      Who would challenge them if they were walking into women’s toilets? There are no guards and if they choose their moment carefully then one to see them. I suggest you pay more attention to the design and siting of public toilets. They are not that safe.

                      A recent court case – 13 Dec 2022- the judge ruled “”Scotland’s highest court has ruled that transgender women should be included in legislation aimed at improving gender balance on public boards””

                      Sports bodies have guidelines re trans participation which were issued 2021.

                      Women’s refuges and in particular group sessions where victims are discussion sexual assault/violence is decided on a case by case basis.

                      In none of these scenarios is a GRC required as far as I am aware. Trans people under the Equalities Act 2010 already have these rights.

  42. Capella says:

    Nine Council of Europe states have adopted similar laws (out of 46 member countries).

    Europe and UN welcome gender reform bill in Scottish Parliament

    The bill, whose final debate occurred over three days as MSPs wrangled with more than 150 amendments, will remove the requirement for a diagnosis of gender dysphoria by a medical professional before a person can apply for a Gender Recognition Certificate (GRC).

    This will be replaced by a system of self-identification, which allows individuals to determine their own gender identity without clarification from a doctor.
    It also shortens the period of time that a person must live in their acquired gender before applying from two years to three months and opens up the process to 16 and 17-year-olds.


    • Surely the BBC must describe this EU/UN support for the bill as ‘controversial’.

      I remember the good old days when controversial policies were those forced through by parties with minority support under FPTP, rather than being backed by 4/5 parties under PR.

      The next time Sunak’s in e.g. Dublin, will his wife avoid the loos for safety?

      • Dr Jim says:

        England is uncontroversial, it’s the rest of the world that’s wrong apparently

      • Capella says:

        It’s not the EU it’s the Council of Europe, an unrelated organisation.

        AFAIK the UN has not adopted sexual orientation or gender identity as new categories of non-discrimination.

        the attempt to make gender identity and sexual orientation new categories of non-discrimination has been repeatedly rejected by the General Assembly, the UN Human Rights Council and other UN bodies.


        If this is not correct please post a link.

  43. Dr Jim says:

    Nicola Sturgeon retweeted: UN Human rights: We welcome adoption by Scottish parliament gender recognition reform bill- a significant step forward in respecting the human right of transpersons to recognition of their gender identity based on self-identification

  44. Alex Clark says:

    It is not always clear who or what might be behind the various groups you can find opposing or supporting certain political policies. Especially policies that are often described as “controversial” in the UK media.

    Here’s an example that was reported a few days ago in an article on opendemocracy.net

    Controversial trans-exclusionary charity the LGB Alliance is renting an office in the Tufton Street nerve centre of Britain’s most influential right-wing think tanks, previously unseen documents have revealed.

    It is the first time a clear link has been drawn between the so-called ‘gender critical’ movement, which opposes equal rights for trans people, and the movement of conservative lobby groups at 55 Tufton Street whose libertarian economic policies have influenced a succession of governments.

    The LGB Alliance says it chose the address – revealed in an FOI request to broadcasting watchdog Ofcom – simply because it was “handy” and “flexible”, and tried to warn against drawing “conspiratorial conclusions”.

    The Georgian building at 55 Tufton Street hit headlines earlier this year during Liz Truss’s disastrous stint as British prime minister. It is owned by Tory donor Richard Smith and currently acts as a base for the Institute for Economic Affairs, Centre for Policy Studies, the TaxPayers’ Alliance, Global Warming Policy Foundation, New Culture Forum, and BrexitCentral, among others…


  45. OldPete says:

    Scottish government to ‘impose’ pay deal on nurses, ‘impose’ doesn’t sound good ?

    • P Harvey says:

      Sadly, without independence the cake can only search so far
      Making cuts to staff or services would be the only other option

    • Alex Clark says:

      The trade unions, Unite and Unison who have accepted the Scottish government’s pay offer for their members working in the NHS have been pushing the government to implement the pay deal ASAP so that their members can see the money in their bank accounts without delay.

      The deal averages 7.5% with the lowest paid staff receiving over 11%, Unite represents 1500 NHS staff and Unison over 50,000 including nurses, midwives, cleaners and porters. The RCN representing 30,000 nurses are asking for a rise 5% above inflation which is at 11.1%, money that the Scottish government clearly does not have unless Westminster shakes the magic money tree and some falls their way.

      I’m sure that negotiations will continue and despite claims by union leaders and the language of the press, the pay rise being paid now is not the end of the road for these negotiations but does mean those that have settled which are the majority of staff affected working in the NHS will see that money in their pay packets sooner rather than later.

      • bringiton says:

        People will be better off having money in their pockets now to pay things like heating than waiting months for the government in England to agree to something reasonable.
        If they ever do.

    • Hamish100 says:

      The unions have accepted the deal with reservations. The Scottish Government cannot impose on a union. They accept / disagree / strike/ compromise

      • Eilidh says:

        The NHS which is sort of any agency of the Scottish Government can impose a pay deal on nurses as NHS is their employer.When I worked for Glasgow City Council for many years we had pay deals imposed on us 3 times

      • It’s English BBC word twisting. They implemented the deal on the table anyway, meaning the nurses concerned would immediately start benefitting from the improve offer, such as in Christmas pay packets, even if they were holding out for more, and negotiations were going to continue, which they are over the festive break.

        It’s the opposite of union busting.

        Such offers are complex and not something the Scottish government can just decide on like that. They need to go away and work with civil servants and other stakeholders to do the numbers. Make projections into the future for all sorts of factors. See which areas will need cuts to fund rises in another and so forth. The current deal has been costed, so they can ‘force’ extra pay on nurses in time for Christmas while negotiations continue.

    • stewartb says:

      In a BBC News website article today Scotland’s NHS pay dispute that makes use of the pejorative term ‘imposed’ in its headline and later in the main text, you will also find this:

      ‘Wilma Brown from Unison, who, along with Unite had accepted the last offer, told BBC Scotland the implementation of the pay deal was “fully and gratefully received” and was overdue.’ So ‘overdue’ – in other words, it’s taken too long already to get the additional cash into our members’ bank accounts?

      Unison and Unite are making favourable references to their negotiating experience with the Scottish Government (SG) when making comments about the stance of Labour’s Welsh government. And the RCN and RCN are criticising the SG no more than Labour’s Welsh government, despite the latter still offering them less that the offer in Scotland.

      Despite all this evidence, only the Labour leadership in Scotland is consistently calling on a health minister to resign: you just know which minister preferentially is being targeted! How does one define ‘hypocrisy’ in public life?

      • James Mills says:

        ”How does one define ‘hypocrisy’ in Public Life ?

        Give me an ‘L’
        Give me an ‘A’
        Give me a ‘B’
        Give an ‘O’
        Give me a ‘U’
        Give me an ‘R’

        What have we got ? Hypocrisy !

      • Welsh_Siôn says:

        And then you get the Tory Press praising ‘Welsh’ Labour and First Minister Drakeford for not negotiating:~


      • It’s time that we had a Jock Brit Coalition Government UP Here.
        I vote for Jackie Baillie and Liz Smith as Co-leaders of our Health Service.

        They seem to have costed well thought out Recovery Plan to save our SHS.

        Nurse! Nurse! My bedpan needs emptied.

        We have had to put up with these third rate jumped up councillors for 25 years now.
        Yet they are still given column inches and air time to trot out any old garbage they choose…
        Not long now.
        Sunak will ofeer the English medical staff a lump sum paayment on top of the paltry 4%, and the union leaders will crumble.
        In Scotland it’s 7.4%…yet they have turned it down.
        Egg on face comes to mind.

  46. stewartb says:

    More on the pay dispute in the health sector: I’ve just listened to interviews on the BBC Radio 4’s World Tonight (from c. 2214 hrs at https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/live:bbc_radio_fourfm).

    Interviews were held with an RCN Scotland spokesperson and with Labour in Scotland’s Jacquie Baillie. Most balanced, most probing interview I’ve heard so far from the BBC – not a high bar but good to hear nonetheless. Much praise from the RCN on the manner with which the Scottish Government has engaged despite no deal yet. As for Ms Baillie’s contribution? Words fail me so I’ll leave any interested listeners to judge!

    The interviewer challenged Ms Baillie on Labour’s stances in Edinburgh and Westminster. Sadly he failed to bring up the even greater hypocrisy of Labour in Scotland given the position that the Welsh Labour government deems it necessary hold to with the health unions in Wales.

    I suspect not too many voters in Scotland listen to the World Tonight. And any expectation that BBC Scotland, at any time of the day or night, might probe in a comparable way the better to inform its public service users is – of course – a crazy pipe dream!

  47. Dr Jim says:

    I see the SUN is terribly sorry about Jeremy Clarkson, but Jeremy’s not

    The thing is about Jeremy Clarkson is he doesn’t offend me at all, not in the slightest, because how does one change a dinosaur from being a dinosaur, you can’t
    I think Jeremy Clarkson is the perfect example of English exceptionalist because he does not and cannot comprehend that he is one, he really believes everybody thinks like him, so instead of wanting rid of him and stopping him speaking or writing, what we should want is more of good old Jeremy opening his mouth and pontificating on every subject that pops into what passes for his brain, which not unlike the Diplodocus is located close to his Arse

    They should stick him on the telly even more, the guy’s an asset to Scotland

    • Pogmothon says:

      He may indeed be an ass-set. But he’s been the same ass-set as long as he’s been on the box. It is my belief that he is just another media creation. Just like Lady “don’t call me dame” rape clause of tank mounter.
      And the easiest way to obtain change of the ‘current bun’ attitude to ‘the jeremy is don’t buy it. Ask Liverpool how effective that is.
      Shell what changed their minds about the Brent Spar disposal plan,

      1) Greenpeace occupying it,
      2) Unsold road fuel in their garages spreading quickly across Europe.

    • Golfnut says:

      Getting kicked in the goolies by one of his own sheep on telly was without doubt a career highlight for him.

  48. yesindyref2 says:

    Y’know, if there’s one thing I’ve learnt in my time on this mortal coil, it’s that unless there’s a good strong reason against, you should always give in to your good impulses – even if you give yourself time to think about it first. This is what I was going to post a couple of days back but I was a bit wary in case it impacts on the case for Independence.

    Mmm, 86 to 39 is actually a supermajority if such a thing was relevant (it is for protected matters – elections etc). What happens if the PO just ignores the Superfluous Supercilious Satirical SoS and submits the Bill for Royal Assent through the normal channels (can’t find out what they are) – it’s the FM is the keeper of the Scottish Seal?

    And though the Scotland Act allows the SoS to prohibit the PO, it doesn’t seem to state the PO has to pay any attention as far as I can see.

    But I don’t care – trans people have a human right to more dignity. And wouldn’t it be right and fitting if it was the gammons like Jack with a failed veto that finally destroyed the Union?

  49. I was talking to my teenage new nephew (formerly niece) last night about what’s happening in Scotland vs France.

    He (hey, this is quite easy!) was saying how in France you still need to provide evidence to a judge to make the change. That involves testimonials from people who know you like friends, family, work colleagues, lecturers etc, that in their opinion you are trans, and have been living as the opposite sex. That’s the kind of evidence trans people have to produce under current UK laws.

    Now imagine you were e.g. homosexual (like certain lawyers come MPs), and to be accepted as that / legally protected for that status, you had to do the above.

    Nuff said.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Well, SS, it’s a well known fact that getaway drivers for bank raids for instance, have to have a valid driving licence and show it to the police BEFORE the bank raid.

      Similarly, drug dealers have to be registered with the GPhC and display their certificate at all times and for all transactions, and joyriders have to have a valid driving licence and insurance, plus having valid ID for drinking underage.

      Oh, wait …

      • You’ve been at the punch again, YIR2?
        The gift of laughter is precious. Thank you.

        Now can we put this GRA red herring to bed?

        WM will not challenge the ruling…but it won’t stop Glenn Campbell chuntering on about it, and Dross, whose party is riven with hetero and homo perverts and gropers, as well as the occasional rapist, has the gall to paint the trans community as a band of prowling rapists.

        He is pond life.

        Just finished making the soup for tomorrow; minestrone this year..mmmmm. A meal in itself, and cheap as chips to make.

        The first week in January is to hand.

        On Radio 4’s political review of the year, they were still talking about the next UK GE being 2 years away. December 2024? Really?

        And the lass joining in the Anglo view of the 3 PM year from Edinburgh, actually declared that ‘Sturgeon’ would not be leader for the de facto plebiscite, lying about some ridiculous regicide in the offing.

        Our greatest weapon in the march to freedom is English ignorance and colonial arrogance.

        They haven’t a clue about Scotland…never interrupt your enemy when they are making fools of themselves.

        My Everlovin’ is preparing the Christmas Belfast Ham later this afternoon; ergo the kitchen a no go area for several hours.

        Big mug of tea, chocolate digestives, and Where Eagles Dare for me.
        Winter heaven.
        I am a simple man at heart.

        Keep safe, YIR2

        • Jim says:

          ” Our greatest weapon in the march to freedom is English ignorance and colonial arrogance”

          That gets my vote of quote of the year in all the independence blogs that I read.
          A merry Christmas to you Jack, and everyone else here.

        • yesindyref2 says:

          We got a big ham, cooked in unbranded cola, then glazed of course. Had a bit, delicious! Lasts for days. Just a turkey crown to go with it these days, kids on Boxing Day. Yes, I stay out of the kitchen except to beg permission to put the kettle on for tea or to lift the ham out the pot. Sometimes I have to wait for the kettle 🙂

          Happy Christmas to you and yours.

          • Snap, YIR2.
            My Everlovin’s glaze is a family secret…cider honey and lots of other clever stuff…the aroma from the kitchen is torturing me..Christmas for the nose.

    • I note that my nephew is a very quiet and shy person. Very artistic, but something of a retiring wallflower. Just want’s to be left alone to get on with drawing and painting.

      Which brings us back to request to have to gather all the evidence discussed. Can you imagine how daunting that would feel to such a person to have to do all that?

      This is the reason for the changes summed up so simply.

  50. yesindyref2 says:

    That was prompted, by the way, by this article:


    paticularly this bit, which we knew about anyway:

    The current Tory Government at Westminster unashamedly oppose the principle of self-ID. But under Theresa May’s premiership, the party was fully signed up to the idea.

    and this:

    One UK Government source said that the Scottish Government may have “unwittingly blundered into a minefield”.

    But in a hint that the decision could involve ideology, the source added that “we think the existing system is adequate”, adding that it “takes a good balance” between trans and women’s rights.

    Ideology is not a valid reason for a Section 35 veto, and I’d think the courts would agree – even the vertically political UKSC.

    • Derek says:

      There was an interview with May on P.M. this afternoon (26th) – 15 minutes or so. I wasn’t really paying attention because I was working on something, but I was aware of gender recognition being mentioned. It’ll be on the iplayer.

    • grizebard says:

      It’s interesting the back-to-front slant that this sorry simulacrum of a newspaper put on this matter. The now sadly-familiar self-abnegating pro-Union framing. The more obvious judgement on the matter is that any straying into danger would be a London government “stepping where angels fear to tread” by escalating in the wake of an ill-judged SC edict with a suggestion of interference now in a substantively devolved matter.

      It almost doesn’t matter how much or little opinion in Scotland might be divided over a (somewhat unnecessarily radical) change in (Act of Union protected) Scots Law, any UKGov threat to wade in and overrule is just begging for trouble. For itself, that is, not the SG. Like an unsuspecting do-gooder who attempts to interfere in another family’s squabble, only to be turned on by all and informed in no uncertain terms that any differences are theirs alone. All the more so in this case since any interference will not be in the least well-intentioned, but a transparent attempt at the familiar old divide-and-rule.

      One might though welcome the over-reach. It’s hard to avoid the impression that our English would-be overlords, increasingly in a panic because they feel control is inexorably slipping away from them, are seemingly unable to do anything but take provocative actions that in their very nature merely hasten the inevitable.

      • Especially as various English MPs are speaking out in support of the legislation, not least Theresa May, who thinks it should be brought in south of the border too, as was the Tory plan under her leadership.

        The reality is that the Tories broadly support the move too for the same reasons the other parties do, and as I’ve tried to articulate (i.e. that the current process is highly sexist, deeply intrusive, logically absurd, and based on ‘guilty until proven innocent over 2 years, including by a doctor, even if you are not ill’). The North British Tories would have voted for it themselves if their English command and control centre had not given them orders to the contrary.

        The reality is that the only party actual opposed is Alba. Also the likes of the Scottish family party etc.

        • grizebard says:

          Which is all a complete tangent to my comment, frankly. I’m not obsessed with justifying the GRA, and it’s a misrepresentation to say that only (supporters of) Alba are uncomfortable if not plumb agin. It’s just that most ordinary people are indifferent because it hasn’t registered particularly with their concerns one way or another. (Yet, anyway.)

          Which has saved the SNP from the totally avoidable and bitter split that could so easily have occurred, to the consequent great satisfaction of the enemies of independence and the great detriment of the SNP’s supposed core raison d’etre. But it has likely left stresses that might with time as easily fester as heal. And living vicariously that close to the edge might not pass so lightly if foolishly tried again.

          No, my previous comment was rather that same point directed outwards: at UKGov’s own increasingly maladroit attempts at pushing its luck too far.

          • Your friendly, post-policing self as ever grizebard!

            I personally don’t feel any need to defend the decision I came to on this policy. I’m proud to say I don’t think my nephew (formerly known as my niece) is a potential lying sex offender that needs to prove they are not to me over two years. That said, I openly admit that at the start of the debate, I didn’t know what to think nor understand it this way. Things like getting a doctor’s opinion seemed sensible enough at face value. But then my nephew’s medical expert parents of course point out that there is no trans test, just as there isn’t one for LGBH. They can’t take brain scans, send pee samples off for analysis or something. There’s no checklist of symptoms they can test for, and their new son just isn’t ill anyway. Perfectly healthy. They ‘diagnose’ simply by trans patients saying they’re trans. Same for a patent that might say there are gay. Self-id.

            I also had a hilarious discussion with my nephew about how he was to prove he was that, by ‘dressing / acting’ like a man for 2 years. Would watching football, drinking beer, burping and snoring here count? Are jeans and a t-shirt men’s clothing? But at the same time, the humiliation for him of the process in France hit home. Expected to gather evidence / testimonials from friends, family, work colleagues etc over 2 years to ‘prove’ he’s a transman and not a dangerous pervert. This for an introverted artistic wallflower. FHS. So no, I don’t need to defend that I will take trans people at their word, and only expect they be subject to the same rules as the rest of us when it comes to safeguarding. I am happy with my conclusion here. I just hope my logic / experience might be of use to others in understanding things, which is why I’ve talked about it on this thread when the opportunity arose.

            It’s just that most ordinary people are indifferent because it hasn’t registered particularly with their concerns one way or another.

            And it won’t IMO, just as repealing Section 28 didn’t, even though polls had the public apparently strongly opposed (if you ask the right way to get the answer you want), as per another post of mine on here. Scots didn’t rush to undo devolution as a result of the Section 28 repeal, just as Ireland didn’t vote to give up its independence after the GRA changes being put in place here were introduced there back in 2015. Norwegians are not cowering their cubicles, demanding a return to Swedish rule either etc. 20 countries and counting now, including us. Our neighbours to the west (Ireland), north west (Iceland), east (Norway) and south east (Denmark) were all wondering why we were being so ‘radically’ socially conservative like Tory England. We keep telling them we are more like them than our southern neighbour after all! In his neck of the woods, it’s England being the ‘controversial’ country doing things ‘radically’ differently here. Scotland is now no longer the sore thumb of progressive, democratic, northern European nations on this issue.

            Aye, the subject is nothing to do with independence and won’t have any effect on it. It’s just hilarious watching those desperately hoping it will. By this logic, if Scots are angrily opposed, when the next UK labour government gets in (w/wo support from the Libs), which could be less than 2 years away, they’ll need to vote for independence to avoid the same changes! You can be sure that if Holyrood opposed, Westminster would force it UK wide as ‘ultimately a reserved matter’, in the reverse of the current situation! That’s how silly this is all getting. 🙂

            People freely voted for the changes in May 2021. It’s in right there in manifestos. If someone voted SNP/Green/Lab/Lib they voted for these reforms. It’s only unionists arguing that ‘Scots didn’t vote for things clearly stated in party manifestos’. Indy supporters opposed to the changes had a pro-indy alternative made up mainly of ex-SNP. SNP members, MSPs etc were free to leave the party and stand for / vote for the likes of Alba. By not doing so, they endorsed the SNP progressing this policy, accepting what the final outcome would be, even if they would vote against it personally, as a handful did (often for being religious, somewhat ironically by self-id).

            Alba’s manifesto was basically that of the SNP, but without the GRA reforms. They just needed 5% in a region, something e.g. Margo achieved all by herself. And all this with the reforms taking centre stage in the media with the aim of making sure the public well were aware what the SNP planned. ‘Influential’ (lol) English blogs threw the kitchen sink at this. Alba got nowhere though, we can only conclude because they public were just not concerned by the reforms, or actively supported them, just like those they elected did by 7/10.

            And of course in a democracy people can vote to undo the reforms in just over 3 years! Might not even have been implemented by that point depending on indy / Westminster etc.

            • grizebard says:

              Yet again you totally missed my point in your evident insatiable urge to obsess at vast length over the GRA and expose your family’s rightful privacy. But I prefer to direct my attention to what serves the explicit purpose of this site, namely to attack our would-be masters (remember them?) and their own overweening interference in our affairs, whatever internal disagreements great or small we may have.

              • Capella says:

                Well said, Grizebard. Methinks the laddie doth protest too much 🙂

              • No, I get your point fine. It’s just you seem to believe I should answer as you wish me to. That any posts I and others make your need to meet your approval in terms of content.

                This is like the only blog out of thousands where people – far from just me – have commented on legislation that recently passed through out parliament, sometimes at length. Legislation that British nationalists are doing their best to twist into a scare story, while the CoE and UN praise a move that brings us into line with all the independent little European countries around us. If you find my posts boring, simply skip over them as many people do with yours. TBH, your reaction suggests my posts on this subject have been very good.

                As for the ‘privacy of my family’… this really is typical British nationalist politician type behaviour. Like Sunak interfering in our domestic policy debates to ‘defend the privacy ‘of people who have not asked him to. Kindly don’t speak on my family’s behalf unless they give you permission to. I’ve revealed nothing whatsoever anyone’s private lives and nobody knows them anyway. My nephew’s status is not a shameful secret or something.

                Anyway, I think I’ve managed to convey my thoughts around the legislation as best I can on this blog. Seems I’ve done a really good job here. I will now get back to debating policy etc and leave you to your ‘vitally important for indy’ task of policing BTL comments on the internet. 😉

  51. Capella says:

    I wish all duggers a very Merry Xmas and hope Santa is good to you. I will be busy for the rest of the day in the kitchen and probably slouching in an armchair with a sherry watching a film later on.

  52. Hamish100 says:

    I’ll await another pronouncement from Cherry why she can’t support the snp yet remain a member of it.
    Maybe she can now support independence without qualification?

    • All I can say here is groups saying the are standing up for the rights of X people are not. They are only standing up for the rights of those that have given them permission to.

      So people waving placards making such claims without seeking the permission of who they claim to speak for, are just as bad as Sunak claiming he’s standing up for Scots. Some Scots who want him to maybe, but very far from all Scots. Even Sturgeon can only ultimately claim to stand up for those that voted for her party / support her as FM, notwithstanding her job description is to stand up for all Scots as best she can.

      So those waving placards outside the parliament claiming to stand up for my wife, daughter etc, are not at all, and the latter are not overly happy about this. But likewise, the extremists elements on the other side all to ready to call people transphobes etc without justification, are not standing up for my F-M trans nephew either, which is what we should all keep in mind.

    • Dr Jim says:

      There’s no future in any other party for her
      The only people who would have had her was Alba but again there’s no future chance of her being elected in that group

      A clever woman, but I reckon she’s done for herself

  53. Well, I’ll shortly be heading out to the restaurant for the next Christmas meal with the French in-laws (currently holidaying in Edinburgh), before another tomorrow.

    Will need to get the running shoes on come boxing day to burn off all these calories! Stuffed already and still the main event is still to go!

    So seasons greetings to all, and I hope Santa is good to you tonight!

    As Sturgeon says, we should all look out for our fellow country folk, particularly at this time. Will be a tough winter for most of us, tightening belts, but very hard for some. So here’s to the season of goodwill too.

    Merry Xmas to all!

    (Apart from that a**hole Sunak pretending to care for the cameras by delivering food to the people he and his ilk have put on the streets in his £3.5k suit and Prada loafers.)

  54. davetewart says:

    Heard the Homeless meal one on the radio.

    You work here?

    No, i used to work for a bank in the city, lost my job and I’m now homeless.

    I used to work in finance.

    • Naina Tal says:

      Yes:Then it was I used to work in the financial sector.
      He has no idea about ordinary people’s lives. Here’s this guy down ln his luck. Used to work in a bank lost his job and his home and Sunak’s making a false equivalence with his own background.
      Who is he kidding with this set up photo opportunity? I’m betting when the cameras stopped, so did he. Off wi the peenie and the plastic gloves and oot intae the limo.
      If it had been the first minister, I’d have found it at least somewhat credible that she’d done a bit of a shift.

  55. Surprisingly fresh faced this morning! Got to wait until we meet the in-laws for lunch for the pressies. Humph!

    This just came to mind over the morning coffee.

    Worth remembering that Scots had no idea about the ins and outs of the GRA reform. Some of the polling was comically meaningless. Might as well ask people about the finer points of rocket science if you are going to start questioning them on complex medical matters. If folks don’t know much about a subject, you can get them to answer pretty much whatever you want if you frame the question right, particularly if you say something along the lines of ‘should doctors make the call’ (neglecting to mention these back self-id).

    The good news is however, now that the English Tories want to block it with that all over the papers, most Scots will immediately decide the legislation was very important, morally correct, and vital to protect, even if they still don’t really understand what it’s all about. You’ll also get them paying attention and noting how all the parties in Holyrood backed it apart from the Brenglish Tories. Will also probably come across the support from the CoE, UN etc.

    Aye, if you want Scots to overwhelmingly back GRA reform, the English Tories trying to block it is how you do that overnight. Truly are a bunch of chumps. They understand Scots about as well as English bloggers from Bath.

    • ‘That most Scots had no idea’

      • Dr Jim says:

        Indeed, the polls might as well have asked *what do you think of the terrible controversial thing that you know nothing about but could be really bad and threatening to all the women in your family*?
        It’s no different to Nigel Farage pointing to a picture of a long line of immigrants shouting *danger danger Will Robinson*

        Anyway, a peaceful Christmas to you all from me and Mrs Doc, may your day from start to finish be rancour free

  56. Hamish100 says:

    Dr j
    Loved “ lost in space” as a tv series. Like the Labour Party who are always lost.

    Have a good festive period one and all.

    Off to see the grandweans.

    It’s why we must fight for independence still. For their sake if not for ours.

  57. Dr Jim says:

    Controversial unelected multi millionaire Prime Minister of Great Britain Rish Sunak

    See, how come the *news* never begins with that?

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      No further words necessary.

      • Bob Lamont says:

        Aye, the PR stunt his advisers thought was a “demmed good idea” to “convey the common touch with people at Christmas…”
        What the hell were they thinking, Sunak’s haircut cost more than this poor homeless sod had to survive on for a week…

        Sunak’s “PR boost” only demonstrated his total disconnect to the travails of the “hoi-polloi”… London’s “Beyond the Cringe” will run and run…

  58. Dr Jim says:

    The Kings speech:

    We must all serve, *united* *solidarity* *goodness of heart* *selfless*
    all the key words were in it so you’ll know your place in life folks

    • Bob Lamont says:


    • ArtyHetty says:

      As if any of those words apply to the troughing so called royals. We watched ‘The Muppets Christmas Carol’ last night, found on DVD in charity shop, I have to say it’s an excellent film. I prefer it to the old B&W, and M.Caine plays Scrooge really well, it is thirty years ago though! Anyway, most of the way through, all I could think was, the ghosts have read the Tory manifesto surely, ‘business’, ‘finance’ and money at the top of their agenda, at the expense of everyone else, in many senses of the word, expense. There’s even a nasty character in it that looks like Sunak!

      Wishing a peaceful and happy Xmas to all at WGD. 🙂

  59. Fact of the day. As per polling, GRA reforms were most strongly supported by women in our parliament.

    Of those voting, 76% of women backed the bill, while only 67% of men did*.

    This is why the BBC etc were keen to highlight this important fact. No, wait…

    *I think I have counted up correctly. I’m only cracking open my first beer as I was in the driving seat back from Christmas lunch with the in-laws!

    Any further posts from now on this evening will likely be more error prone!

    • keaton says:

      Not sure the gender of the parliamentarians is all that important. 63% of anti-GRR rebels were women, and 100% of Tory pro-GRR rebels were men – is that also worth highlighting?

      • No, because you are dealing with a statistically tiny groups there and it is the overall pattern thats of note. The fact is that, when armed with all the facts, expert opinion etc, women were more supportive than men. This actually reflects polling too.

        If women MSPs had strongly opposed while men backed it, you’d be asking why, obviously.

        As you note, it was a free vote.

        • keaton says:

          No, because you are dealing with a statistically tiny groups there and it is the overall pattern thats of note.

          Well, exactly. 128 MSPs are not a statistically significant sample.

          As you note, it was a free vote.

          Whit? I didn’t say anything about that at all. Although since you bring it up, you’re mistaken – the SNP and Labour (dunno about the LDs) were whipped, while the Tories had a free vote. Which only undermines further the claim that the gender of those voting had any significance.

          • So no policies should stand as the views of MSPs are not important? You don’t respect the majority view of elected female MSPs? You think the public, including female voters, were too stupid to realise what they were doing when they elected them? You think our female MSPs are dishonest and untrustworthy, having lied to the public / are trying to hoodwink them into danger? Honestly, I don’t get the point you are trying to make?

            These are not 128 people randomly picked off the street. They are who Scots have chosen to be representative of them. To study all the facts, debate these and make the decisions. Scots asked these people to reform the GRC process in a mass voting exercise. Every adult Scot was given the opportunity to select these 128. Alba, the Tories, the Scottish Family party etc were alternatives who were opposed. The chamber is pretty much exactly how Scots wanted it to be. That’s how PR democracy works. Are you suggesting we need at least 1000 MSPs for their decisions to be valid? Before they can be considered as representing us?

            Erm, not reprimanding people for not voting with the party line is the same as a free vote. There is zero difference. Throughout the process SNP MSPs have been free to oppose or abstain. Some key people have done exactly that. It’s silly to suggest anything other than this had happened. On paper they might have been whipped, but the reality is no whip was brought out. It was hardly needed when 7/10 in the chamber were going to vote for, and even the Tories would have been on board if with a different PM. If they were having to vigorously apply the whip to be sure of passing it, we could have actually called the bill controversial, but it must be up there as one of the last so in terms of how easily it was passed.

            Incidentally, the MoE on 128 is +/-9%. So would still be a huge majority backing even if it was 9% too high! 🙂

            • Oh and I noted the 128 sample was May 2021 election result weighted too! Just for good measure! 😉

            • keaton says:

              So no policies should stand as the views of MSPs are not important? You don’t respect the majority view of elected female MSPs? You think the public, including female voters, were too stupid to realise what they were doing when they elected them? You think our female MSPs are dishonest and untrustworthy, having lied to the public / are trying to hoodwink them into danger? Honestly, I don’t get the point you are trying to make?

              I was making the point that the fact that the gender of MSPs who voted for reform is not especially noteworthy. The rest of that, once again, seems to have come out of nowhere.

              Erm, not reprimanding people for not voting with the party line is the same as a free vote. There is zero difference. Throughout the process SNP MSPs have been free to oppose or abstain.

              Has this been stated? Last I heard they hadn’t announced what was to be done with the rebels from the stage one vote. It would seem a bit odd for them to impose a whip for no reason.

              Not that it’s a bad thing for parties to enforce a stance on this, btw – I’ve always thought the distinction between bog-standard policy votes and “issues of conscience” is a bit daft.

              Incidentally, the MoE on 128 is +/-9%. So would still be a huge majority backing even if it was 9% too high!

              Lol, ok

              • I was making the point that the fact that the gender of MSPs who voted for reform is not especially noteworthy.

                I can’t help but feel if 76% of women MSPs opposed the legislation, you’d consider that noteworthy? 🙂 The media certainly would! And if 76% against would be noteworthy, 76% for is likewise.

                I think 7/10 MSPs voting for a policy is very noteworthy, with 76% of women doing so also so. Must be right up there with some of the most strongly backed policy in the history of our parliament as discussed, including by women MSPs.

                It’s certainly far more noteworthy than, e.g. the latest poll on the subject of 1000 people who know f’all about the subject, so you can get them to answer exactly how you like. You could get them to contradict themselves and all sorts of fun. I’ve also found it very disturbing during the GRA reform debate that some who claim to understand polling, have tried to pretend it is important and ultimately should guide policy. These were the sort of people that argued this kind of polling (from 2000) should be listened to back in the day:


                The government is planning to end the law which bans local authorities from promoting the teaching of homosexuality in our schools. In light of this, which one of the following two statements comes closest to your own view:

                60% The ban should remain and schools should not be allowed to promote the teaching of homosexuality to our children
                36% The ban should end, and schools should decide on how homosexuality is taught to our children
                4% Neither/don’t know

                Thank heavens that was ignored and Section 28 was repealed. Didn’t harm support for devo / indy either I hasten to add.

                Of course making human rights / equality policy based on the latest carefully crafted poll of an often very ignorant (if simply just not understanding) public is the very worse form of right-wing populism, and should never be allowed to happen. Our elected representatives should make such policy based on expert opinion, such as that of human rights bodies (CoE, UN) and medical experts (BMA). That’s what just happened thankfully.

                For example, everyone knows that gender dysphoria is diagnosed by self-id right? A person telling the doctor they are dysphoric is how it’s diagnosed. Doctors can’t test by any other means, and it’s physically impossible to prove someone is lying. It’s bemusing that some people think there’s a lateral flow test or something than can be employed here! That, or worryingly, believe people can ‘dress / behave like’ a particular sex; something e.g. feminists have been fighting so hard against for so long. I’m honestly flabbergasted that Joanna Cherry apparently thinks women ‘dress / behave’ a particular way, and that budding transwomen can copy this for 2 years to pass the ‘real trans’ test. What does this involve exactly? Wearing heels, growing their hair long and reading Mother & Baby? My feminist mum would box my ears for suggesting someone could go away and ‘dress / behave like a girl’ for 2 years. Seems she’s much more of a feminist than many of those opposed to GRA reform.

                Anyway, so we have some people shouting (including in polling) We want the current method kept in place (self-id) – we don’t want self-id!. The BMA have of course recommended self-id* as it’s the only means to diagnose (just as it is for the similar protected characteristics of LGBH), and said they are not needed for this as trans people are, like my nephew (formerly niece), perfectly healthy in many cases. Not in need of an medical treatment at all. It’s only if someone’s actually dysphoric (distressed to the point of illness about their body) are Doctors required to step in and treat them as needed.

                Ok I’m waffling a bit, but I think the views of our MSPs are important, on this topic and on, e.g. the timing of an indyref. Unionists argue otherwise. The latest polling is far, far less so, possibly to the point of irrelevance, and that’s my overall point. If the legislation had been strongly opposed by female MSPs, I would be very concerned as to why. That’s not the case though, but quite the opposite, which I think says something of note on the matter.


                • keaton says:

                  I can’t help but feel if 76% of women MSPs opposed the legislation, you’d consider that noteworthy? 🙂 The media certainly would! And if 76% against would be noteworthy, 76% for is likewise.

                  If MSPs had been whipped to vote against the bill, and the vast majority of women MSPs duly did so, then of course that would be equally unremarkable. “Parliamentarians vote along party lines” = “dog bites man”.

      • And note my original comment was a statement of fact rather than making any sort of argument. I was interested in this as I like stats / facts.

        Our MSPs represent us. They are selected by us to do this under PR. It would be harder to get a more representative sample than one we Scots select to represent us ourselves. They match us almost perfectly, politically / socially. That’s the intention of multi-party PR.

        This large group of men and women had all the evidence presented to them. The hard facts, the opinion of medical experts they could question etc. Everything they needed to make an informed decision as the public task them to do as it cannot in such matters.

        Overwhelmingly, MPS of both sexes, after careful consideration and debate, backed the bill in a free vote. Women MSPs were the most supportive, which ties in with polling; here women are likewise more supportive. If we had members of the public go through the exact same process, they would conclude in the same way, for our MSPs are just members of the public too and, as noted represent a microcosm of Scottish society. They use the same loos, changing rooms etc we do. Their family and friends likewise. They are not Rishi Sunak.

        ‘Women’ (such as all the women in my family, including my F-M trans nephew) are not concerned by the legislation, but supportive. There are thousands of trans people walking around and never has anyone in my family/friends/colleagues group been accosted in the loos by one. I suspect that applies for pretty much everyone. Some women don’t support the legislation, just as some men don’t. That’s the reality of the situation. That is how an unbiased media would present the situation, which was my main point.

        As for the Tories, I suspect support for the bill would have been even higher if they had not been told by the English government to vote against in an attempt to get one over on the SNP/Greens. Most Tories don’t do morally correct voting, just point scoring. After all, their party supported these reforms previously. It’s only when the brexit mob took over and saw an attack angle north of the border was this stopped. That and it’s being implemented country by country across Europe. If May had still been in charge, the North British Tories would have backed it along with the other parties.

  60. Ok, caught the speech highlights oan the news driving home.

    Just waiting on Charles opening up his palaces as places for those in need to get warm and having something to eat. Because ‘he cares’ right?

  61. Scottishness goes way back in the clan S_S. Was at my folks flat in Edinburgh browsing the book collection. Has an extensive Scottish literature / history collection. Saw this particular antique gem and though of you duggers.

    An early edition of this:


    • Tam the Bam says:

      I note with interest the Collins book on “Scottish Surnames” to the right of the ‘ancient’ tomes!
      We had a relative (a retired headmistress whose interest was genealogy) who traced our paternal line as far back as 1690 (no relevance to other historical events that year!). Given the wanton carnage and destruction inflicted on local populations/kirks and baptismal records etc;…this was no mean feat.
      Yes..you guessed..we originate from the Nairn area whose citizens suffered terribly after Culloden ..some moving to the Partick area in the mid 1800’s.
      My interest in this book is down to whether or not it could shed any light as to the origin of our surname. I have a hunch its Norman.


      • The ye olde tome was of particular interest to me as it understood what constitutes a nation. Not the land, but as you allude to, it’s people.

        The book isn’t about mountains, lochs, hills and braes, but about the ‘flower of Scotland’, it’s people. A quite fascinatingly detailed history.

        Lang may yer lumbs reek duggers!

  62. Malcolm Pate says:

    Just a few thoughts on the Scottish situation. The Westminster lot will not give up owning Scotland without a fight. We all know that England is finished if they have to give up owning our assets oil,gas,water etc. I am a member of the SNP and have been for years and will continue to be. Taking our case to the UN and other World bodies will not get us anywhere.
    The question we have to ask ourselves is are we up for the fight to take our Country back. Because that is what will be required. The longer we sit watching Westminster take our Scottish Parliament to pieces the harder it will be. Are the Scottish people up for the fight ?

    • Doug says:

      Are the Scottish people up for a fight?
      I would seriously doubt it, hence the stagnant population growth. Anyone with a bit of sense has left and is making there own way, rather than waiting for a change that will never happen. Why would the English government give up their main sources of income?

  63. Ken says:

    The people in Scotland just need to vote for it. Vote out the opposition. Vote SNP/SNP at every election in higher numbers. A higher turnout at every election. Take another as well. Vote for Independence. Instead of Independence supporters sitting on their hands and blaming everyone else. Get out and vote for it at every election. Use it or lose it. As simple as that. No opposition. Independence. The power is in the people’s hand.

  64. Ken says:

    Women are unrepresented by 1/3. In every section of society. They have less rights. It is unequal and unfair. The PR systemwas designed to keep the SNP out. Introduced by Unionists for their advantage. Unequal and unfair. Let’s 3rd unionists in. To try and destroy the Holyrood Parliament. Without a mandate. There is an unfair quota. The list brings up th3 dregs to keep the SNP out. An unfair minority of incompetents.

  65. Hamish100 says:

    Define “fight”.

    Some folk at work I know “apathy” is too much hassle.

    I do think ensuring the usual “canny be bothered” or “I’m no registered”brigade to vote will help- as they did in 2014 with the local campaigners.

    True but sad, I know 1 SNP at the time who voted No as we weren’t ready.!
    Thankfully they are no longer a “cooncillor”and has been replaced with a “we can” replacement.

    One thing. The constant attacking of the FM ( who is elected) by some sectors are doing the unionists/ Brit Nat job for them. Eagerly picked up by the Tory press and certain blog sites.

    If you side with the britnats little englander that is what you are. Maybe respect the Scots voters whe elected the main party would help.

    • Dr Jim says:

      What is hilarious is that the main thrust of those who claim they want Scottish independence but that FM Nicola Sturgeon doesn’t is that their judgement and conclusion of this is entirely based on the psychic mind reading abilities of those who oppose or dislike her
      The entire premise of the Alba party is based on nothing more than Alex Salmond’s egotistical grievance and Stuart Campbell’s conjured up mind reading tricks drip fed to the disgruntled with not a scintilla of evidence to support their Mystic Meg claims, all of which on closer inspection lead back to the same Westminster claims made by people like Tory MP David Davies some years ago, nobody in Scotland at that time was prepared to fall for such obvious invented nonsense to try to discredit the FM, so instead of the *enemy* so to speak failing in that campaign reworked it and used it as an inside Scotland attack line in the hope that if Scottish people are saying these things there must be some truth to them

      Throughout history Scotland has been betrayed and undermined from the inside and there’s always been money at the bottom of it
      History has also shown us over time from where that money originated

      Bought and sold for English gold originally robbed from Scotland, they use our own money against us

      • Campbell’s conversion to Salmond’s La La L’Alba Land coincides with his interview with Butegate Alex when he had his wee prog on RF TV.
        Since then, Sturgeon has been the De’il Incarnate, and ALBA the flaming torch of Scottish Independence.
        Campbell is an ‘expat’ Lib Dem supporter…..

        Their idea of forming a united Yes front is predicated upon the demand that we all hail Salmond as a Great Leader, for The Great Alex to have the leading role in the push for independence at the next UK GE.

        Well, Salmond is electoral poison, following the drunken bedroom fondles episodes, and the Brit Press and the Jock Yoons would love it if we were daft enough to forgive and forget this man’s stupendously arrogant stupid indulgences.

        I note that Bono’s former Bagman, Douglas Alexander, described by the Rags as a ‘Labour Grandee’, is to stand in Lothian come UK GE 2024.

        He will be taking on the Turncoat ALBA ‘MP’, Kenny McAskill…in the hope that betrayed SNP voters shun the ALBA man…well. I’m sure that the SNP will have a fresh candidate, less inclined to treachery than McAskill.

        No chance of Alexander standing in his old constituency then? I wonder why?
        I still harbour hope that the UK Government crash and burn long before 2024.
        Note to the Daily Record. Humza is never going to resign as HS just because you give Jackie Baillie column inches every day in your wee rag to demand that he does so.
        Here’s a thought, DR>
        More tha half of your readers support independnece, and vote SNP>
        Jackie Baillie is a rotund little Nobody who has done nothing for Scotland in the 25 years during which she has pocketed wages and worked up a very lucrative pension pot.
        What would the Record do without sellik and ranjurs?

        • Bob Lamont says:

          Ooft Jack… At least the “rotund little Nobody” retains “keep left” signs as instruction to everyone else at junctions..

          • Can you imagine this woman as health Secretary.
            In her case, if you can’t be a good example, be a dire warning?
            It is the daily sack Humza dirge that gets me.

            There have been no costed manifestoes presented to us by any of the Jock Brit Parties on any aspect of our daily lives since the early 2000’s..they just shriek out SNP BAD at every turn, their meaningless rants faithfully disseminated to the people of Scotland by Glenn Campbell, Paul Hutcheon, et al., on cue for money.
            If they keep lying, the public will begin to believe them.
            Joe Stalin 101.

            England is a lost country..and we are not heading off into the wilderness with them.

            I note that the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Kirk has joined the fray, telling us all that a de facto UKGE would be a bad idea..

            To all member of the CoS on here. what think you?
            Render unto Caesar and all that.

            I have a sense that England will implode long before 2024.
            They can’t even feed themselves now.

            • grizebard says:

              The only policy of the alleged “leadership” of Labour’s Scottish twig-not-branch is Mitigation Hell, and is based on the notion of the Scottish Government – but only an SNP one, naturally – having a magic money tree to correct the multifarious wrongs imposed upon us by a failing Union that it mysteriously also continues to maintain is the best possible of all possible worlds. It’s uncosted-on-steroids. By definition.

              Thankfully ordinary people of all political inclinations and none know it. Which is why Labour is unelectable here, for all its lingering self-entitlement. But it would be useful to have a reminder. So someone should make a programme – dystopian, naturally – anticipating the catalogue of misfortune that would inevitably ensue if Labour again became residents of Bute House somehow and that vacuous policy were tested to destruction.

            • Eilidh says:

              Jack I am a long term member of COS
              and not impressed by the Moderaters comments re next General election being a plebiscite election on Scottish Independence at all. Didnt even know about these comments until you mentioned it and had to search internet for them.The Church is becoming more and more like Tory party at prayer in most parishes hence the huge decline in membership with most churches having most members in their 80s. I am a youngish members and in my 60s. The church is seen as an irrevelance to many in modern day Scotland and is only beginning to realise that. I am also sure that part of the issues with the church and Independence is NS is reportedly an atheist and the church hierarchy will never support the policies of someone like that

              • Eilihd, I always had a soft spot for CoS because it seemed as an outsider version of Christianity, and there can be fewer more outside organised religion than this poor scribe, that the kirk was egalitarian, that each member interpreted the Word in their own way, that there was no hierarchy, no Lord Bishops, Cardinals, nora self declared infallible Head.

                Yet, the last but one Moderator was a peer of the English realm, and a Lib Dem active politician.

                I want every man and woman of the cloth to condemn the right wing fascist triumvirate taking turns in running England and holding Scotland as a vanquished colony from their pulpits every day every week…not on political grounds, but on the basis that modern English politics is based on an evil diktat, a hierarchy of greed, which deliberately engineers society so that Hoi Polloi live in fear, starve, freeze, and suffer intolerable anxiety for the future of themselves and their families.
                It is a fight against evil, in ecumenical terms.

                England is dying.
                We are not going down with them.

        • jfngw says:

          I don’t believe the main objective any of the London controlled parties is now to win Holyrood, they intend to reduce its power and what politician of significance wants less power.

          They are there now to try and stop independence they have no other function. Hence the continual stream of how inferior Scotland is, how the EU would reject us, how decisions made at Westminster are always superior to decisions made in Scotland. It’s a slow continuous drip of negativity to make Scots believe they are incapable of running a country and need the overseers of London to guide us.

          It’s the classic propaganda used by Westminster to every country which wanted to escape their clutches, it never worked in reality. But they did keep their fingers in the pie by securing the monarchy as head of state in many countries.

  66. Ken says:

    The Billionaire hypocrites out in force.

    The failed banker and the tax evading hypocrites. Beyond belief.

    Tax and benefit cuts. By tax evading lying hypocrites. Soon they will be out, £100million coronation. Royal pays 19% tax on £20Million. Pays no capital gains, corporation or inheritance tax.

    • Let’s hear it for the poor, starving and homeless from Rich Sunak and King Spaniel!

      The new King has at least 13 ‘homes’ on these islands.

      Read this and rage, Duggers.

      Balmoral Castle
      Palace of Holyrood House
      Hillsborough Castle
      Sandringham Estate
      Highgrove House
      St James Palace
      Clarence House
      Windsor Castle
      Frogmore ‘Cottage’.
      Kensington Palace
      Buckingham Palace

      He gave his son and heir Cornwall and Wales of course..
      And we pay for the upkeep of them all.
      And that doesn’t include the royal residences in the Coloni..sorry Commonwealth countries.
      Read them and weep, or ‘suck it up’.
      How much is the Bedroom Tax on all of these properties?

      • davetewart says:

        You know the answer, NIL taxes.

        How about
        Castle of Mey
        Dumfries House.

        Paid for the refurbishments with the case full of Euro notes, not declared, actually money laundering.

  67. Ken says:

    Royal paid 10% tax on £20Million. Royals paid not tax for years. Kept secret under the Official Secrets Act. That is why they are so wealthy. £Billionaire tax evaders.The UK one if the most unequal places in the world. Class system and Masonics. Secrets Act.

  68. Ken says:

    According to polling data. Could be wrong. The Independence support does not match the election turnout. Too low turnout let’s the opposition in. The turnout needs to be increased to vote SNP/SNP. If people want Independence. They need to turnout at every election. Instead of moaning about not getting Independence. They have to turnout and vote. Higher turnout. Independence.

  69. Hamish100 says:

    Heard radio 4 news, murder in nightclub, weather in USA, the royals, railways back on but restricted, no mention of nhs so everything is ok.

    No mention of the critical alerts announced in England by some health boards.

    BBC scotchland – nhs Scotland bad according to Jackie Baillie, the Tory health spokes person as well ( or are they the same! ) ,nhs bad – did they mention that….

  70. Welsh_Siôn says:

    WTF? Just, WTF?

    (Too much sherry? Or am I being too charitable?)


    Welsh Conservative Shadow Minister goes viral with ‘weird’ royal family tweet

    27 Dec 2022 2 minute read

    A Welsh Conservatives Shadow Minister has gone viral with a tweet about the King’s speech that was branded ‘cult like’ and ‘weird’.

    Tom Giffard, the Shadow Minister for Culture, Tourism and Sport, posted a Christmas day image to Twitter of himself and others wearing masks of royal family members.

    Along with the photo, the MS for the South Wales West region posted a Tweet that said: “Merry Christmas everyone – we take watching the King’s speech very seriously in the Giffard household.”


  71. Bob Lamont says:

    One of the BBC in Scotland’s more blatant propagandisations over the last few years has been on Scotland’s NHS – Their latest promoted hyperbole “Top doctor says ‘no way’ Scottish NHS can survive”, a reframing of an article they had published earlier as “NHS workers ‘dreading’ going to work, says BMA union”, an article which even the National has reported on.

    Dr Kennedy echoes Dr Buist’s tack of “burnout and exhaustion”, in turn feeding the Tsunami Baillie and Disaster Gulhane narrative of “It’s all that SNP’s fault”, yet look at how BBC Wales report for comparison…

    What is NOT mentioned is the more intriguing….
    – Dr Kennedy makes no mention (or perhaps BBC edited ?) of doctors retiring earlier than normal because of Westminster imposed changes to pension (reserved) schemes.
    – Just as the BBC effectively ran radio silence over Brexit effects on anything, the same approach seems to have been taken over “long-covid”.

    We already know NHS staff suffered proportionally higher from Covid due to greater exposure, but with “long-Covid” estimated as affecting 3% of the population (ONS – November), does it not stand to reason NHS staff have been more greatly affected ?

  72. Hamish100 says:

    As we know the bbc and other organisations are loaded in bias to the unionist cause. The newspapers run at a loss but are backloaded to keep going by right wing foreign owners.

    As for the BMA it is one of the best organised TU’s promoting its cause and at the same time like the “royal colleges” dictates standards as to who does what.
    I wish my TU was as good as the BMA.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      “I wish my TU was as good as the BMA” is fair comment on representation, but it does not forgive Kennedy or Buist for being “economical with the truth” or allowing the truth to be mangled by HMS James Cook, or Tsunami Baillie or Disaster Gulhane – If Mick Lynch of the RMT and Matt Wrack of the FBU can challenge the problem head on and blame HMG, why can’t Kennedy, because that’s where the real problem lies ?

      Is Kennedy really so dense to not realise the damage this does to his profession’s standing ?

      • Tam the Bam says:

        Slightly off-topic:
        I trust you all caught the splendid evisceration of Gulhane performed by Dr Humza before the recess?
        I put an extra bauble on my tree for Humza….excellent work.

  73. James Mills says:

    BBC ‘Scotland’ really should take a lead from the old New York Times motto –
    ”All the News That’s Fit to Print ” and re-brand their news programmes as :

    ”All the News that we think will help Labour and Tories .”
    ”All the News , true or not , that WE think will harm the Independence cause ”.
    ”All the News that can be massaged to damage the Scottish Government ”.

  74. Dr Jim says:

    Every musician on the planet knows the BBC is a corrupt self serving organisation, they have always promoted what they decide is good or bad or whoever they want to promote, many musicians have taken the BBC to court over their biased behaviour and the public now accepts in terms of the music business that yes the BBC is corrupt

    So why then do these same people deny the BBC is politically corrupt?
    The BBC is an English state protection broadcaster, they lie and deceive constantly about everything that they decide is not in the interests of the English state

    It’s why the directors of the BBC are English government appointees, they work for and on behalf of the state no different to any other dictator nation

    Britain did not elect Liz Truss as Prime Minister, only a few Tory members voted for her, now we have the guy who lost to Liz Truss because those few members didn’t even want him

    So now England Scotland Wales and the North of Ireland have a Prime Minister who nobody voted for so was appointed by some of his pals in the House of Commons, so the British Isles is not being run in terms of anything remotely even resembling democracy and the BBC and other media seem to have nothing to say about that

    Rishi Sunak is an appointed dictator, even Vladimir Putin at least pretends to have democratic elections, in many countries this would be enough to start a revolution or even war, but in the good old makey uppy rules of England the BBC state media says this is all just fine and dandy

    Can any body imagine if America just appointed a President that nobody voted for who lost to the previous President that nobody voted for who was ousted for wrecking the economy? what do we think would happen?

    Scotland shouldn’t be asking for democracy, we should be declaring war on these people, they’re criminals for Gods sake

  75. Hamish100 says:

    Ok Dr Jim,

    You go first!

    I’ll ca canny and watch the lay of the land once you are dragged off by the thought police.

    I take it your Christmas meal didn’t agree with you? Lol

    • Dr Jim says:

      I don’t mean you actually have to fight them, you just have to embarrass them in the worlds media for being lying undemocratic hypocrites

      I’m no gonnae tell them about the murdery bit

  76. James Mills says:

    Now that King Charles ( not the spaniel ) has mentioned ”Cost of living crisis ” in his Christmas message ( so I have been informed – I was too busy doing anything else rather than watch this latest propaganda ) , how long will it be before Charlie is called upon by his advisers to turn up on a High Street near you to cut the ribbon at the opening of a Food Bank ?

    Will some Food Banks in future be ”By Royal Appointment” ?
    They could have a wee commemorative plaque to remind its customers of the glorious day when His Maj deigned to visit the plebs and bring some Royal light into their sad , dreary lives .

    Perhaps Charlie will condescend to be the Royal Patron of a Food Bank group and help in fund raising . This gesture would allow him to strike another special medal to wear signifying his courageous efforts to avert poverty in HIS kingdom .

    He could have an Open Day at one of his many , many residences where the Hoi Polloi could marvel at ( but DON’T touch ! ) the numerous treasures that his family have squirrelled away whilst sucking gratefully off the Public teat .

    Or he could fly out ( F*ck eco-friendly travel ) to meet one of his many rich Middle-Eastern chums , the ones who provide cash sums in supermarket carrier bags , and get another ( tax-free ) donation for a good cause .

    Or he could arrange to have numerous Food Banks up and down the UK named after his dear departed mother – e.g The Queen Lizzie Memorial Food Bank – as a reminder of the legacy left to ‘the nation’ after her long , glorious reign !

    • BBC Radio Jockland was gushing over the estimated 10 million who had tuned in (on all platforms, including Kelvin underground and Scotstounhill presumably) to hear him speak, arguing that this was proof that he is more popular than his mammy was last year; she only managed to get 9 million of her ‘subjects’ to tune in.
      The sickly forelock tugging of BBC Jockland is risible and demeaning .
      The fact that some 53 million or so chose not to bow down before his pre-recorded Imperial Mightiness seems to have escaped the Sycophantic Sue’s and her TV analyst’s reasoning.
      I vote that we rename Knightswood Community Centre’s Foodbank The King Spaniel The Third Soup kitchen.
      I had a wee laugh earlier scanning the frightening english Papers. John Redwood is up in arms because the Met has accepted a tender from Audi to replace the aging Jaguar fleet.
      Redwood demands that the Polis think again and buy Briotish made cars again; ahem, Jaguar Land Rover is now owned by the Indian Group Tata, and made and assembled outside the UK.
      The Birmingham Plant is being run down…
      England has lost its head that it lets these idiots still run their country.

  77. UndeadShaun says:

    “Cornwall visitors urged to bring first aid kits as NHS trusts under ‘extreme pressure’
    Critical incidents declared by hospitals and ambulance services in south, south-west and north-east England”


    But NHS Scotland gets all the mentions by both STV and BBC.

    And add on UK gov rolling the dice yet again, by not testing visitors from china with WHO concerned a new strain of covid may emerge from china


    Italy has learned from what it experienced and has imediately announced restrictions on visitors from China.

    The NHS in England is facing large scale collapse if in january we see a vacine resistant covid strain on top of flu.

  78. Hamish100 says:

    Will visitors who are positive be removed to Rwanda? Asking for my pal cruella de braverman

  79. Hamish100 says:

    I see the police are in crisis due to senior officers taking early retirement according to the police representative on the bbc.

    Nice of him to volunteer for his membership to give up their early retirement at 50 to help the young recruits.

    Public servants at their best. Most of them end up as security officers at football grounds or security firms. Things are getting worse he says yet serious crime is down again.

    Ooop what ?// the senior Officers will need to be paid more…

    • Jack McCnnell heads the ‘registered charity’ non partisan Reform Think Tank now. Peresumably he gets big bucks for this wee sinecure. They are demanding that we become English, and elect Mayors and that they have regular meettings with the FM to hold her to account.
      They even argue that backbencher MSPs get more wages than Council Leaders, and that tha is not right.
      Privately and secretly funded, this non political bBeanie slags off our Government and churns out the same rants as Dross The Millionaire Dentist and the Taylor’s Dummy.
      FYI McConnell, Laird of Cockpen, we have ‘provosts’ Up Here.
      WE are not and English Region. We are Scotland; you are not.
      I wonder how much Jack’s wife is hovvering up in wages perks and pension pot as Culture Exec or whatever she’s called from my council?
      I’ll guarantee that it’s more than the £64 k the MSP’s pick up.
      It’s nigh impossible to find out how much these ‘Heads of’ La departments earn.
      I wonder why?
      Think Tanks..Newspeak for the Scotia Mafia and the sinister Filthy Rich backers who think that they, not the electorate really run Scotland.
      Of course the Herald scotsman and the Raggard run with this Think Tank’s garbage.
      Brown and McConnell…the enemy.

      • Dr Jim says:

        The media trots out the title *think tank* as though it’s some kind of official public body whose job it is to think on behalf of, well who now?
        They never mention to the public that these are privately run and funded arms of political parties paid to *think* of things to oppose the actual publicly funded politicians we vote for, in other words they oppose us the actual voters and what we vote for in actual political manifestos

        They’re not *think tanks* they’re political strategists, usually failed or retired politicians

        It’s the public who are the actual think tank, the politicians tell us what they want to do, ask for our vote, we *think* about it and vote, all hail democracy

        • Tam the Bam says:

          …. not to mention the “Independent Pay Review Body” which allegedly is totally apolitical and independent…….lol

        • stewartb says:

          Dr Jim writes: ‘The media trots out the title *think tank* as though it’s some kind of official public body whose job it is to think on behalf of, well who now?

          ‘They never mention to the public that these are privately run and funded arms of political parties paid to *think* of things to oppose the actual publicly funded politicians we vote for, in other words they oppose us the actual voters and what we vote for in actual political manifestos.’

          Yes, OK but I think it’s more complex, and actually EVEN MORE insidious than the above characterisation.

          The think tanks referred to are in many cases funded by (let’s call them) ‘interested third parties’, sometimes unknown, that are using the ‘think tank’ to develop further and promulgate in a sustained, patient manner the case for public policy change/s to suit the funders’ economic, social, religious and/or political objectives. The think tank’s role involves ‘purposeful’ mission-oriented ‘research’, the influencing of political discourse in the media and also engaging individual politicians that have the potential to gain internal party influence and democratic power, and more generally, shifting the ‘Overton Window’. Political PARTIES are likely to be followers, influenced and opportunistic, taking advantage of public opinion shifts.

          From https://conceptually.org/concepts/overton-window :

          ‘The Overton window of political possibility is the range of ideas the public is willing to consider and accept.’

          ‘How do you shift the Overton window? The most common misconception is that lawmakers themselves are in the business of shifting the Overton window. That is absolutely false. Lawmakers are actually in the business of detecting where the window is, and then moving to be in accordance with it. – Joseph Lehman’

          ‘If politicians must locate the window, think tanks and social movements must shift the Overton window to succeed in their advocacy. They must convince voters that policies outside the window should be in it.’

          From the right wing Adam Smith Institute’s website (16 April 2012: ‘Shifting the Overton Window’ by Tim Worstall): ‘But what is this Overton Window thing? That’s the set of policies which at any one time can be plausibly taken as being politically realistic. Our job is to shift the perception of the various policies we propose so that, over time, they become part of that set of plausible, possible, political actions.’

          ‘… start out saying something that by the standards of the times marks us out as being complete loons howling in the wilderness. By the time people are drinking the beer made today they’ll be chuckling at the latest weirdness from those nutters. By the time today’s production of good Scotch gets drunk it’ll be a serious policy proposal that one or more political parties is including in a manifesto. And by the time this year’s claret is ready to drink it’ll be a settled part of the legislative landscape and no one at all can remember that we haven’t always done it this way.’

          In the UK presently, I think it’s obvious that the shifting of the Overton Window is underway in terms of the NHS funding model. The issue for us in Scotland is whether we and our Scottish Government will have SUFFICIENT AGENCY to decide on the future direction of OUR NHS or whether, still within this Union, we will be spectators and effectively compelled to follow what England’s voters and the politicians they elect to Westminster decide.

      • Welsh_Siôn says:

        Did you also know he has his own ‘international foundation’?


        • In other words, his own presumably, he is a Helluva Guy!
          These grubby wee carpetbaggers wander about all over the place garnering wee jobs, and titles.
          I wonder how much he gets for a talk on the obligatory lecture circuit?
          BY all reports many get 10’s of thousands for a half hour talk to Big Business jamborees.
          There is a whole nexus of ex Brit politicians coining it in, paid fees and stipends by Dark Money, to fly the flag for the Union.
          I loved the entry that Broon had appointed him as a ‘Peacebuilder’ for two years until Labour was kicked out on its erse in 2010.
          They are acoountable to no one but their shady paymasters.

        • Dr Jim says:

          I New York he’d be poured into a foundation

          • It ain’t for nothin’ that I dubbed them the Scotia Nostra.
            They swan about Scotland as if they owned the place.
            Oh, but, they do.
            The rest of us are just there to empty their bins, treat their illnesses and clear up after them in restaurants, mock fund raising auctions, and car crashes.
            McConnell, Darling, Reid, Robertson are all very wealthy ‘socialists’ for doing their masters’ bidding.
            They are terrified of Scottish Independence, because we are taking our country back.
            They know that it is coming, the end of their gravy train existence is nigh.

            • I so annoyed myself that I had to look it up.
              This from the Evening Times April 2020.

              “The top five earners, Glasgow City Council salary earners also includes Maureen McKenna, Director of Education on £138,326 and Bridget McConnell, Chief Executive of Culture and Sport Glasgow, with a salary of £138,161.”

              That’s £2,740 a week, Duggers.
              I doubt that the McConnells will be choosing between eating or heating this winter, do you?

              The Article makes interesting reading.

              “In 2020 Annemarie O’Donnell, Glasgow City Council, Chief Executive, is the only council official who earned a salary more than £150,000. Her £175,000 salary with expenses and pension contributions her total listed was £215,000.”
              The article is headed:
              ‘Glasgow City Boss among the top earners in the UK.’

              The FM’s salary, and remember she is running the whole of Scotland, is £157, 861.
              So the CE of Labour Glasgow was getting £17k p.a., more than the FM?

              The whole system was calibrated to reward the Legacy of Labour and Tory appointed Yoons who admiister our councils, with outrageous salaries perks and pensions to screw as much money out of us proles as possible.
              My taxes and rates pay for this corrupt evil regime.

  80. Hamish100 says:

    That’s because he wore the mini kilt in New York and was a laughing stock.

    Still does him and his kultural missus still go on hols with the warks / clements partnership?
    Scotland should review all these so called trusts ‘ partnerships/ think tanks/ charities.

    • And the billion plus he gave back to Chancellor Brown because he couldn’t find anything to spend it on in Scotland, other than as a down payment on his ermine?

      • Dr Jim says:

        That indeed was the clincher for McConnell, what politician in the world says he can’t think of what to spend money on? let alone give it away to England, another country, giving them the opportunity to claim how wonderful they must be to have given you so much in the first place

        The slimy little squint isn’t even the reflection of a man

  81. dakk says:

    Pele has died.

    No apologies for being OT given the person who happened to be on topic here

  82. Capella says:

    • Golfnut says:

      Note the 4th reply where Scotfax tries to confuse the issue by comparing private pension payout.

      • Capella says:

        Yes there is a lot of dispute about pension figures and what is or isn’t included. Unionists do muddy the waters by including private pension schemes which people in other OECD countries may also invest in.

        Time for a definitive official paper on this topic.

      • Bob Lamont says:

        It’s a pile-on from Scotfax onward, but you’re quite correct that post is entirely misleading.
        Most of the muppetry do this when Europe comes up in comparisons or Scots are mentioned, much as dial-a-gob descends when HMS James Cook allows HYS comments, only terminating it short when the Muppets are taking pelters – James’s conversion from HMS Sarah Smith may actually be one of the earlier examples of GRA before it was even passed by Holyrood.

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      “Oh wad some Pow’r the Giftie gi’e us
      To see oursels, as ithers see us!
      It wad frae mony a blunder free us,
      An’ foolish notion:
      What airs in dress an’ gait wad lea’e us,
      An’ ev’n devotion!

      – With acknowledgements

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      Opps! You’ve done it again, Golfnut. [With apologies to Britney Spiers].

      If we aren’t members of this group – we can’t see any posts.

  83. Hamish100 says:

    I see in the National from 30 Years ago a certain James Gallagher esq was writing to one of the Millibands in the Labour Party trying to push for 1 Secretary of State for Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland. Noticeably not one for England.
    I assume Gallagher believes England does not require to be included.
    Like many others it seems one nation Englanders want the Celtic nations to go away or not to exist. They are an irritation to Englands great plan of ruling the world.

    • Dr Jim says:

      Imperial England, the UK, Great Britain and Northern Ireland, all just titles of England

      Apparently the rest of us are considered “non English” and that is the used description and terminology in the English government for the people of Scotland Wales and the North of Ireland

      We have no description as peoples except that of *non*

  84. Hamish100 says:

    The release of archive files during Tony Blair’s premiership has some interesting notes if you look hard enough. The mighty Helen Liddell at the Scottish Office ( sometimes bag carrier for corrupt Robert Maxwell), one from John Reid, some illuminating comments from the Brit ambassador about Ireland and sellarfield radioactivity into the Irish Sea. I see a response from an A Salmond too. The price of electricity in Scotland will be looked into.
    Too much to go into it all
    Find it at


  85. UndeadShaun says:

    Looks like Sunak has had a change of heart with an announcement due to be made.


    “Rishi Sunak set to impose Covid tests on travellers from China in U-turn”

    Perhaps he was given a stark warning of the what the consequences for inaction would be.

  86. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Rishi Sunak has a heart?

    Pray tell us where it can be found.

  87. Ken says:

    Devolution 2000. Before there was a Secretary of State for Scotland. Appointed by the Westminster Gov (unelected).

    Jack the unelected Secretary of State for Scotland. Sirs trying to high jack the Scottish Gov. Support reported to be 4%. The Tories will not last a year. Oblivion and beyond.

    1992. 2002. The commitment to the illegal war. Killing millions and devastation the world economy. Costing £Trillions. Banking crash 2008. Deregulated banking. Thatcher onwards. Less liability. Down from 25% collateral to 13%. Worldwide. UK & US world bankers. Tax evading capitals. Evading tax worldwide. Corporate irresponsibility. Supported by irresponsible Govs. Breaking International Law.

  88. Dr Jim says:

    Remember, Rishi Sunak the multi millionaire unelected Prime Minister of Great Britain was originally rejected for the job by the members of his own party in favour of Liz Truss, the woman who crashed the economy and was removed from the job 44 days later by a bunch of Rishi Sunaks pals in the House of Commons, the same guys who sold England Brexit and are now supported by the Labour party Sir Keir Starmer and his mob of new Labour Tories

    How much are we paying for our leccy, our mortgages, our food, our petrol, everybloody thing? more than every European country they just dragged Scotland out of totally against our will

    Vladimir Putins fault my Arse

  89. Guybrush Threepwood says:

    The vile Suella Braverman is planning on raising the minimum income requirement in order to bring a foreign spouse into the UK. It is thought that the income requirement could be raised as high as £35,000 per year.

    Foreign spouses have no recourse to public funds. The minimum income requirement has torn tens of thousands of children apart from one or both parents and has led to an increase in social security dependency, particularly for women with foreign spouses. In most marriages, men are still the bread winner and if their spouse is unable to enter the country to work and contribute to his child’s needs, then it leaves the mother picking up most of the financial responsibilities and having to apply for state support – that support acting as a substitute for a father’s full-time income. I also read a case about a woman married to a Canadian citizen, who was also her carer. As he is not permitted to live in the UK, she requires a full-time carer paid for by her local authority, something her husband could do free of charge if he was allowed to live with her in the UK.

    The current income requirement means that around 40% (rising to 50% if you have children) of the UK public do not meet the requirements to bring a foreign spouse into the UK. Raising that income requirement to £35,000 would mean that 65% of the UK public would NOT meet the requirements in order to bring in a foreign spouse into the UK. It is utterly flabbergasting to live in a country where only 35% of the population would be permitted to live with their spouse in the UK.

    Let’s not forget that individuals in receipt of a UK spouse visa are able to work, with no restrictions on employment and most of them do work and pay tax. The minimum income requirement refuses to take into consideration the savings or potential salary of the foreign spouse, which disproportionately affects women. Under these rules, you could marry Kim Kardashian, who has an estimated net worth of around £1.5 billion, and you would still need to earn £18,600 in order to bring her into the UK through the spouse visa route. The lunatics have well and truly taken over the asylum.

    Norway is the only other country with a proper minimum income requirement (which is actually higher the UK). However, Norway is a high wage economy, so even a full-time cleaner would earn enough money in order to bring their foreign spouse into Norway. They also have exemptions for students, individuals caring for relatives and those living on disability benefits. Under Norway’s system, a full-time student could bring their spouse into Norway. Other developed nations either have no income requirement or have their income requirement based upon the bare minimum a couple could live on, usually determined by their benefits system – similar to what the UK had prior to the hostile environment.

    The Tories cannot have it both ways. If they are arguing that £35,000 is the bare minimum a couple can live on, then those on benefits should be in line for a bumper pay rise.

    P.S The Tories have also increased the cost of the spouse visa from £350 to well over £1,000 per year (and non-refundable). The entire thing has been turned into a vile money making racket. They have also created so much red tape that even immigration lawyers fail to comprehend all of the rules and regulations.

    Paul and I both fell in love with foreign nationals and I know this matter is equally close to his heart.

  90. Hamish100 says:

    Have a great Hogmanay and ne’reday.
    BBC and STV are at the moment sticking with New Year’s Eve. Still time for them to respect Scots tradition by changing the banner headline on their weather chart and news banners. Do you think referring to Hogmanay is a threat to their way of life?

  91. Ken says:

    1990’s the Internet. More difficult for corrupt Westminster Gov to keep secret their criminality under ‘D’ notices and the Official Secrets Act. Information and communication. Worldwide web. Fraudsters and clown administrations.

    More information circulating and distributed.

    The power is in the people’s hand. Use it or lose it. Get out and vote.

    Independence is not just for Christmas. Independence is an improvement for life. Keeping people alive.

  92. Dr Jim says:

    I had a look at that site the other day and indeed it’s no longer an independence blog it’s just a pathetic copy of Wings moanfest vitriolic childlike foot stamping, with the contributors seemingly spending more time reading Wee Ginger Dug and misreporting on contributors here

    The blogger himself now indulges in the populist Wingsy psychic mind reading of events and people then gives his analysis on his own invented fantasies feeding the hate filled posters to keep them hating

    Mindless negative and full of misogynistic content

  93. Ken says:

    Independence means a more constructive migration policy. To aid and bring growth to the economy.

    The Tories are now supporting India over the EU. The nearest biggest market. ECB loans and investment in renewables etc. CAP payments to keep basic food costs cheaper. Basic freedom of movement. Cheaper travel and less restrictions. Scotland needs people for growth and prosperity. The Westmibster bad, poor policies. Causing illegal wars, tax evasion and financial fraud. Westminster illegality causing the worse migration crisis since the 2nd WW. Killing millions, costing £Trillions and ruining people’s lives.

    Westmibster poor, bad policies have depopulated Scotland. Less growth and prosperity. The illegal Barnett Formula. Unionist fix to deprive Scotland of revenues and resources.

  94. Capella says:

    Mike Russell writes his end-of-year assessment of the route ahead.

    In fact, the remarkable thing is not that there hasn’t been another referendum, but that support for independence in the first one has not waned. Indeed, as the British Social Attitudes Survey confirmed in September the actual number of those backing indy has more than doubled in the last decade making it the majority choice of the Scottish people despite an increasingly rabid anti-indy media and a contemptuous Westminster establishment.

    That is tangible and bankable progress, particularly as Scotland’s constitutional history is one of slow shifts.

    To recognise these difficulties, perhaps sometimes compounded by being in Government (but not being in Government would make things harder still), is not to evade responsibility but to emphasise that we are engaged in something that is far from easy and always unpredictable.

    SEEKING a peaceful democratic route out of the UK, while the wider world that we wish to join faces huge challenges means that the right path is often unclear and sometimes suddenly blocked by circumstance as well as more often by malicious intent.


  95. Not-My-Real-Name says:

    Happy New Year to everyone on here……

    • Capella says:

      Happy Hogmanay to you too NMRN. Hope Dublin was fun and you’re ready for round 2 tonight – even if the White Heather Club is no more. 🙂

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      Yes, but as any fule fno, the kicker is in the headline.

      The ‘jackpot’ is for the UK (at Scotland’s expense).

      Quoi de neuf, pussycat?

    • Capella says:

      Good article. GMK’s point about false claims about the Scotch whisky industry illustrates how necessary it is to have a good source of factual information on any aspect of our economy. Lies and mendacity will circulate throughout the media.

  96. yesindyref2 says:


    I have what’s known as a “Ten Minute Rule Bill” going through the British Parliament right now calling for this dreadful practice of so-called self-disconnection to be outlawed.


    So far, despite sounding sympathetic, the UK Government has taken no action. I met with Ofgem and they’ve taken no action on this either. I held a debate the week before Christmas and it was supported by MPs from all parties.


    And let me tell you, both of my campaigns received unanimous support at SNP conference this year so I am confident if we were currently independent and our Scottish Government had the powers currently held by the UK Government, both of my campaigns would have been successful by now.

    What is shocking is that these two campaignes seem to need a Scottish MP from Glasgow to fight for them, the MPs from the rest of the UK, Conservative, Labour and LibDems don’t give a hoot. They’re all right Jack.

    And THAT is why we need to be Independent – the Scottish MPs are a different species altogether from the other MPs at Westminster; and that would be one which cares about people not petty party politics.

    And yes, that doesn’t stop me from saying the SNP MPs need to do far more about getting a referendum, not just making the case for Independence as the above does.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Two comments on that article, the second disagreed with the first but I upvoted both of them as between them they hit the spot!

    • Bob Lamont says:

      It’s not really surprising when you think about it, it’s always been about the advantage for the majority of MPs being in England, what is left is SOLELY a problem for Scotland, Wales, and despite their own particular political peculiarities NI, to resolve.

      If ever evidence were required of the mendacity of London Government and it’s associated media see https://www.believeinscotland.org/mediawatch-by-recognising-scotland-is-an-energy-goldmine-the-daily-express-boosts-case-for-independence/
      It does not matter a toss to them that their “UK goldmine” of hydrogen being less than 50% efficient than direct export by interconnect from energy, it’s all about what profits may be made FOR LONDON. That’s why there have NEVER been direct european interconnects from Scotland.

      I keep making the point that Billions are being expended to ensure London remain the gatekeeper at Scotland’s expense, it’s beyond time we cut that tie.

  97. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Blwyddyn Newydd Dda i Bawb – Happy New Year to All

  98. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Again, quoi de neuf ?


    BBC news, sport and current affairs programmes have repeatedly breached guidelines on impartiality despite promises from the corporation’s boss to stamp out bias, a Telegraph analysis has found.

    The corporation received 97,156 complaints about its programmes in the year to Dec 4,


  99. Legerwood says:

    To Paul and family and all Duggers,
    A Happy and Healthy New Year.

  100. Capella says:

    Happy New Year to everybody from the Capella residence.
    Slainte mhath 🙂

  101. Only about 50 minutes of tis distressing year left, Duggers,
    Aguid New Year tae yin an’ a’.
    See you next year.
    This is the only time that wee joke works.
    We’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet..

  102. Alex Clark says:

    Happy New Year to all especially those like us here that would like to see Independence. We will get there, not long now.

  103. dakk says:

    Happy New Year to all.
    Been another strange one.
    This one will likely be even stranger.
    More progress should still be possible though with the right people at the helm,which they are.

  104. Hope everyone had a guid hogmanay! Here’s tae a year of Yes!


    Scots want monarchy ditched in an independent Scotland, new poll finds

    A MAJORITY of Scots want to see an independent Scotland become a republic with an elected head of state, according to a new poll.

    Good stuff, although I’m tempted by Queen Meghan the 1st, if just take pee the rest of them aff!

    • Golfnut says:

      Not until after we ditch the union, I hope by now people are beginning to understand, though it’s patently obvious many are are oblivious to, the reasons why Scotland must leave the union not as a new state, (England’s go to option), but as the ancient Kingdom of Scotland., That we keep Sterling as a second currency until we sort out that very important asset the BOE. That we part own Trident and every other military asset in the current UK including the security services, Embassies and Treaties entered into by the UK government.
      Anyway, Happy New Year to all,
      Live long and prosper, yes I’m a treky.

    • Pogmothon says:

      I’ll go along wi that, an elected royalty. Just like is proposed in the Declaration.
      For a specific job description, with specific recompense and allowances.
      Keep everybody happy, and piss them all off at the same time.
      Something we can all object to, but not enough to be bothered by it.

  105. Aye, but Europe erm, disnae want you back. Scotland, N. Ireland, Wales ok, but not England / Britain .


    Brexit poll: Two-thirds of Britons now support future referendum on rejoining the EU

  106. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Another poll for ya:


    Boris Johnson and David TC Davies among Tory casualties at next election says new poll

    01 Jan 2023 3 minute read

    A new poll suggests Labour is on target to win a majority of about 60 seats at the next General Election, with former PM Boris Johnson predicted to be among the high-profile casualties

    Welsh Secretary David TC Davies is also projected to lose his seat along with defence secretary Ben Wallace, work and pensions secretary Mel Stride, transport secretary Mark Harper and Scottish secretary Alister Jack.

    But the new poll of more than 10,000 people for the Best for Britain campaign group suggests Labour’s lead over the Tories may be more precarious than had previously been thought.


    PS I thought Union Jack was getting the ermine …

  107. yesindyref2 says:

    Happy New Year all!

    Interesting to read the reactions to Sturgeon’s New Year speech, including the spin put on by the National.

    No, she didn’t mention Independence, and for reasons of national unity starting off the year, I agree with her. Perfection would be if we take ALL of Scotland with us for Independence, even if a very tall order!

    But interesting to read the comments below the line, and the thing is that the posters really are entitled to have different opinions WITHOUT being called trolls by one side or the other. Personally I’d delete such comments if I was moderator, having contrary views helps to reflect how the general public think.


    Posted from my very new used but excellent condition £200 Fujitsu U748 lifebook with Win 11 after a rollup mid-Dec update and as an XP user, Win 11 is very configurable and actually very like XP now I’ve messed with it 🙂 Compatibility is a struggle, but I have got most of my XP applications to work without Virtualbox / VMware, and even one Win 95 game.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Jings it’s fast by the way, like lightning.

    • yesindyref2 says:

      Oh yes, and partitioning is a dawdle – comp management, disk man, shrink volume, click on unassigned, set up drive and letter. With 256 gb SSD, almost as much as my old desktop, I just did the partitions the same (one double, one a lot smaller) so all relative references work. Way faster when you defrag as well, and easier to backup.

      Mmm, nearly time fir mahlzeit.

      • It is not with a little pride, that this 75 year old Luddite hasn’t a clue what you’re talking about, IRF2.
        If you had said that the whopplestrock connected to the spurldicker augments the speed ratio by 700 dadogerks per dipplemo, I’d have taken your word for it.
        Back at the dawn of the New Tech Revolution, when my young nephew was ‘loading’ a game on to an audio tape machine, I resigned not to get caught up in the march towards a Brave New IT World.
        I know not of tree and bird species beyond the Chestnut and the sparrow…yet I live with my ignorance.
        We rely on experts like thee to keep us safe from carpetbaggers.
        Just had our steak pie dinner…time to doze in front of an old Ealing comedy.

        • Bob Lamont says:


        • Welsh_Siôn says:

          time to doze in front of an old Ealing comedy.

          Passport to Pimlico, perchance?

          Just a friendly warning with that one – apparently it’s Farago’s favourite film.

          [That’s ample alliteration – Ed.]

          • WS, you may recall that England cut the water and electricity supplies to the New Grand Duchy of Burgundy, and erected a border perimeter. Grand Burgundians were no longer UK citizens, and were barred from entering England.
            They were being starved into submission.
            Rather like Priti Patel’s solution to the Norn Irn Protocol.
            England is Pimlico writ large.
            Lamb chops transported 12,000 miles in a frozen container from New Zealand rather from a Welsh hill side. Great deal Mundell the NZ Trade envoy. That’ll save the planet.
            I can understand why Farage liked this movie.
            In his eyes, Pimlico was England ‘taking back control of its borders’ and running out of food water and electricity. Then the Black Market barrow boys moved in and sold essentials at extortionate prices.
            So very England…

        • yesindyref2 says:

          the whopplestrock connected to the spurldicker

          Took the words right out of my mouth.

          Got Office 97 to load fine, suites my needs and I have thousands of documents, that and files from my other old software. One other tip, is to copy the files from the XP / Vista whatever installation, and run the installation disk over the top of that, probably in compatibility mode. I got that from Turnpike google groups, same people still going thanks very much, including the guy who invented RFCs with his initials, and I also used it for stunnel to keep the config. Still got some problems to sort out later this week!

          Having had (small) steaks and pudding but not on the same plate, and while my better half watches call the midwife, OOOH, OWWW, boom boom, waah waah (repeat and wash), it’s now time to try to install one of my games in peace and in vinem veritas which I think means over a glass of 19 grimes …

          I’ll drink to that!

          • YIR2
            As confusing as the Court Jester conundrum:-
            “The pellet with the poison’s in the vessel with the pestle. The chalice from the palace has the brew that is true.”

            I am minded of Edward Lear’s ‘Book of Nonsense’.
            Especially of the first stanza of The Jumblies, which foretold England’s exit from the EU, and its inevitable consequences.

            The Jumblies

            “They went to sea in a Sieve, they did,
            In a Sieve they went to sea:
            In spite of all their friends could say,
            On a winter’s morn, on a stormy day,
            In a Sieve they went to sea!
            And when the Sieve turned round and round,
            And every one cried, ‘You’ll all be drowned!’
            They called aloud, ‘Our Sieve ain’t big,
            But we don’t care a button! we don’t care a fig!
            In a Sieve we’ll go to sea!’
            Far and few, far and few,
            Are the lands where the Jumblies live;
            Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
            And they went to sea in a Sieve.”

            From now ’til Independence, I shall refer to the Yoons as ‘The Jumblies’.

            It’s carnival time and I’m light headed.

            ‘Kind Hearts and Coronets’ is my guilty pleasure tonight.

  108. Dr Jim says:

    I think if Nicola Sturgeon had been captured by the Sioux tribe of American Indians and had another name like *Two Jobs woman* some of the idiots in Scotland who harp on incessantly about her not harping on incessantly about Scottish independence might begin to understand that when she speaks as Scotland’s FM she speaks for all and not for just those who support what she and her party supports politically and constitutionally

    Remember that when *Two Jobs woman* speaks as SNP leader, the people who do not support Scottish independence complain about her just as much as the parties of the first part

    It’s now 2023 so perhaps to be PC her new title should be *Many jobs female* and quite frankly I do not envy her any of them, because the abuse this woman receives on a daily basis from all sides of the moronisphere would have seen me not doing any of her jobs years ago, I might have sodded off to pastures new in disgust and left Scotland to the whims of the British nationalists, which is what both sides of the political armchair geniuses deserve

    The comments in the National following anything the FM says should not be printed, in doing so the National is allowing itself to be misused in the same way as Twitter
    Is that what we want for our National newspaper? a Twitter copy? it’s dumb and it’s stupid, which is exactly the purpose of Twitter, to be filled with the dumb and the stupid deliberately misunderstanding and abusing everybody else, or as I like to call it

    *The moronisphere*

    *Many jobs female* has to have the hide of a Rhino the patience of a saint, the brain of Stephen Hawking and the soul of Mother Theresa to put up with Scotland the country she’s trying to save, yet if you ask her she’ll tell you every single time that it’s the privilege and honour of her life to *serve* our country

    How many of the eejits in the Moronisphere could last 5 minutes in her shoes?

    • Welsh_Siôn says:

      “Many jobs woman” is a prime example of a successful, professional lady who can multitask far better than some of them who can only manage one job (and then fail abysmally at that one.)

      I’m looking at the likes of you Mr Sarwar and Mr Cole-Hamilton.

      • Sarwar and Coal-Scuttle are two of the London operated Jumblies Up Here. (See my post above.)
        The biggest hurdle which the Millionaire Dentist, The Tailor’s Dummy, and 4 Jobs Dross face is that Nicola Sturgeon is a woman.
        We the people, will lead ourselves to self Determination.
        Only Glenn Campbell, and the rest of the Jock Brit media blame NS for inciting ‘division’.
        She is the FM of the Scottish Parliament, getting on with the day job…

    • Eilidh says:

      Totally agree Dr Jim re the comments BTL on The National that are seriously misogynistic/ obnoxious towards NS. The resident group of trolls there some of whom are pretendy Indy supporters is getting seriously out of hand. I am seriously contemplating telling the National where to shove the subscription I have. I refuse to allow my subscription money to fund a platform for these morons. Maybe I should just give my subscription money to the local foodbank at least it would doing some good there

      • barpe says:

        Like you, Eilidh, I am thinking of ditching the National subscription, as it just seems to be getting worse, and appears to be forever highlighting Alba yet forever constantly stoking up the divisive btl comments about Nicola and the SNP.
        I, like many others, are indy supporting but cannot justify paying subs to a supposedly indy newspaper which seems to often appear to be stoking dissent with the SNP leadership.

        • Hamish100 says:

          People are entitled to different views but not to be abusive whether it’s misogynism,racist, sectarianism and such like. Its for the National to “police” which recently they have failed to do so. It’s clear to me that some of the repeat offenders do not support independence and / or attach themselves to their so called causes to attack the FM in particular. In that their aim is to remove the FM which is only good news for the right British nationalists.
          Let’s see if the paper cleans its act up as we do need 1 paper out of 13 or so arguing for independence.

          • bringiton says:

            Now that Westminster’s deceit has been exposed as far as Scottish self determination is concerned,I would hope that the upcoming congress on our democratic future will silence the Get Nicola party and some of it’s more unhinged supporters.
            I am sure many of us have reservations about using a Westminster election to realise Scottish democracy but hopefully other measures can be explored and actioned.
            That should hopefully bring us all together in our common cause.

        • I think the problem may be that if someone is a subscriber to other titles, they can read and comment on some of the articles on the national (maybe those showing on more than one paper). So quite a lot of the BTL commenters are not national subscribers. That should not be permitted IMO.

          • Legerwood says:

            It is all about ‘click bait’ and advertising revenue where the BTL comments are concerned. Any newspaper with decent moderation policies could put a stop to it. Alternatively they could just not open certain articles to BTL or close the comments down within a short time frame. The Guardian does this on some of their Opinion pieces.

          • Bob Lamont says:

            If that is the case (eg Herald subscribers) you are correct, that is ludicrous.

            There was an influx of trolls when the National ran a “What you can afford” promotion or similar, a commercial decision which may cause difficulties further down the line.

            • Eilidh says:

              I am pretty sure when The National changed situation with BTL comments a couple of years ago due to amount of trolls then it was stated only those with a subscription for The National could post there. Out of curiousosity I just tried to send a comment BTL on an article in The Herald but my login details for The National don’t work there. I didn’t expect they would if they had security on The National would be a joke. I think Unionists ts or other morons taking advantage of cheap subscription deals sometimes are the problem. I do use The National app sometimes but pages take ages to load on that and no comments at all on the App. Just wish they had a block button so I would not have to endure certain people

  109. How embarrassing is this if you are English? Imagine your government is so pathetically insecure as the one in Westminster. Must be so humiliating.

    Whole world looking on at the English government too s**t-scared to run itself without wee Scotland. Could not look weaker on the world stage.


    Czechoslovakia: Czechs and Slovaks mark 30 years since Velvet Divorce

    The Czechs / Slovaks are way ahead of the Brenglish in the bravery and democracy stakes. Hats off to the former, and all the best to them.

  110. Capella says:

    I haven’t seen much in The National lately I wanted to post but this article has some useful advice.

    Scottish Labour urged to ditch Tory pacts for new year’s resolution

    ANAS Sarwar’s Labour party are being challenged to ditch making pacts with the Tories for their new year’s resolution.

    The party’s collaboration with the Tories in the wake of May’s local council elections made headlines after Labour and Conservative councillors made deals to keep the SNP out of power in several authorities.

    The two parties ended up co-ordinating support in Edinburgh, Fife, Moray, South Ayrshire, West Lothian and Stirling.

    And in Edinburgh, two councillors who were elected as Labour representatives were suspended from their party by Sarwar for refusing to vote for a deal with the Tories.

    Meanwhile nine Labour councillors in Aberdeen, who were suspended for entering a coalition with the Tories in 2017, were allowed to stand for Sarwar’s party in the 2022 council elections.

    This came after Sarwar promised there would be “no formal coalitions” for his party in the run-up to the elections, something Nicola Sturgeon described as “politically immature”.


    • Dr Jim says:

      The headline in the National should read *Sarwar is a liar* then point out the pertinent facts that prove he is
      The National is a newspaper not a politician, they don’t have to go all around the houses avoiding accusation when the accusation is true
      The National claims to be a newspaper that supports independence, not a newspaper pretending to be neutral like all the others, they’re often accused of being the mouthpiece for the SNP anyway, so what are they worried about

  111. Well, the E&W census data flashed up before me today, and my insatiable desire for evidenced based decision making got the better of me…

    It turns out entirely as expected. Of those specifying either a male of female gender identity which did not match their birth sex (so excluding non-binary etc), we have:


    48,505 Trans man
    47,581 Trans woman

    Which ties in with data from e.g. self-id Ireland, in that slightly more females change to male than the other way around via GRC application. For England and Wales, it’s 50.5% F->M Trans men to 49.5% Trans women.

    So statistically this suggests us blokes (at birth) are more at risk of meeting a ‘fake’ trans person ‘sneaking into the gents’. Not sure how a fake transman will use the urinals though, which is the only place you have any chance of getting a peak somehow. ‘Fake’ trans women will be jealous at this minor advantage over private cubicle only women’s loos, which basically scupper them from the outset. I guess guys, the key is to listen for the tinkle of running water, and if it doesn’t come, then watch oot! 😉

    I suppose it actually does back up the argument that this is about ‘female rights’. Very narrowly though, as it’s only slightly more women seeking to change. The reality is that statistically, it’s basically equal in terms of M/F rights. Both sexes are ‘affected’ equally, as you might expect for something entirely natural, and as old as the human race.

    Anyhoo, this backs up approach taken by the Scottish government, as I think we can be confident the numbers will be very similar here. Making the GRC process arduous actually has a larger negative effect on natal women than the other way around. Oh the irony.

    So, the next time a right-wing southern English blog tries to convince you that trans people are mainly male perverts we should be careful of, you’ll know you are being lied to. Again.

    Now back to indy policy!

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