2023 could be an election year

Well, here we are, another year, and no doubt another Conservative outrage against democracy and decency just around the corner. This is the year when Scotland ought to have been having another independence referendum, but we all know that isn’t going to happen – at least not this October – because of the shameless contempt of British political parties for democracy in Scotland.

Both the Conservatives and Keir Starmer’s Labour party have shamelessly abrogated to themselves the right to contradict the electorate and are refusing to accept the verdict of the people of Scotland as expressed through the ballot box in the May 2021 Scottish Parliament elections, attempting to justify this theft of democratic legitimacy with ad hoc post-rationalisations which do not stand up to the most cursory scrutiny and which insult the intelligence of the voters.

The media in Scotland is complicit in this contempt for the rules of every election in the UK since the introduction of the democratic franchise because they insist on treating this as a blow for the SNP and not what it really is, an utter travesty of democracy and proof that within the UK the people of Scotland can only get what they vote for if the parties of Anglo-British nationalism permit it. The only reason that last October’s Supreme Court ruling was necessary was because Labour and the Conservatives refused and still refuse, to accept the will of the people.

It is an appalling scandal that this is not a bigger scandal. It should be the headline in every paper, the BBC should be unceasingly doorstepping Labour and Conservative politicians, demanding that they explain themselves, but they will not, because the media in Scotland is woefully unrepresentative of public opinion in this country and sees its role as maintaining Westminster hegemony. This is a media which is allowing the parties of Anglo-British nationalism to get away with a decades long lie to the people of Scotland by claiming that the United Kingdom is a voluntary union of nations when we now know that it is nothing of the sort. The United Kingdom is indistinguishable in practice from Greater England. 2022 will be remembered in the Scottish history books as the year that the UK Supreme Court put a stake through the heart of traditional Scottish unionism. There are no unionist political parties in Scotland any more, only parties which seek to maintain the political and constitutional subordination of Scotland to the dictates of English nationalism and a Westminster parliament which is its creature.

It is because of the contempt for democracy in Scotland displayed by Labour and the Conservatives that a de facto referendum is a necessity. The mere fact that this measure has to be resorted to is proof in itself that democracy in Scotland cannot and will not be respected by the institutions of the British state. The campaign for Scottish independence is very much a campaign for democracy itself.

The current Conservative Government enjoys a notional majority of 69, but that figure belies the fragility and instability of Sunak’s government. The Conservatives are deeply divided and lurch from one scandal to the next. Sunak struggles to impose his authority on a party whose back benches contain powerful figures who plot to undermine him at every turn. He has failed to reverse the Conservatives’ dire standing in the polls, a poll for the right wing GB News channel published in December gave Labour a 26% lead over the Conservatives. This poll also suggested that the Conservatives are haemorrhaging support to the far right English nationalist reform party, which suggests that the Conservatives, who already occupy the same political space as Ukip did some years ago, will move even further into the right, normalising extreme right politics in the UK to an alarming degree.

A party this far behind in the polls could be expected to cling on to power as long as possible in the hope that something will turn up which could allow it to escape electoral obliteration. However this is a Conservative party which is already on its second Prime Minister who has not faced the electorate in a General Election. Sunak is weak and his position insecure, which is why the horrendous Suella Braverman continues as Home Secretary despite her rank incompetence and repeated breaches of the ministerial code. Sunak cannot afford to allow her to organise plots against him from the back benches.

However the game of politics is above all about projecting an air of confidence. Parties that can see the writing on the wall in dreadful polling figures and realise that they are heading for defeat can create a self-fulfilling prophecy and consume themselves in becoming terminally recriminations, becoming reckless, demoralised and divided. There are abundant signs that this is where the Conservatives are already, circling the drain in a spiral of doom, just waiting for the final flush.

Despite his notional majority, Sunak has already, in his short time in office, been forced into two humiliating U-turns in order to fend off rebellions from his unruly MPs, firstly dropping compulsory house-building targets after as many as 100 back bench Tories threatened to back an amendment that would have effectively forced his government to abolish the target of building 300,000 homes a year in England and then just two days later doing a U-turn on the ban on new onshore windfarms in England in the face of another potential Tory rebellion. These victories for Conservative rebels will only have emboldened Sunak’s many enemies within the party, they scent blood, and will seek to press their advantage as we go into 2023.

This is a government which will struggle to get through the next few months as the public is assailed by rising prices and public sector strikes continue.

In a few weeks the SNP will hold a special party conference at which strategies and tactics for the de facto referendum will be decided. The most likely scenario is that the next UK General Election will be used as a de facto independence referendum in Scotland. This election has at the latest to be called by December 2024, and held by January 2025 meaning that in a worst case scenario we could be forced to endure two more years of Conservative mismanagement and corruption, but this is a Conservative government which will struggle to get through the next two months, never mind the next two years. It is highly likely that the election could arrive much more quickly, and we need to be ready for it.


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79 comments on “2023 could be an election year

  1. andyfromdunning says:

    Thanks for your article Paul. Happy New Year to you and Peter. I agree with your points.

    I feel disgruntled at the SNP at present because they are not talking to or listening to the many Yes opinions. The modified Spring Conference on the plebiscite election you mention should include representatives from Yes groups, Alba, SSP, ISP, Common Weal and others as this vote is for all of us and all of us will be involved in the campaign, hopefully. It would show leadership of the Yes movement from the party of independence which currently is invisible.
    They promised a Scottish Constitutional Committee in Feb 20. This could be it. Perhaps chaired by Lesley Riddoch.
    There are many who feel that the party needs to smell the coffee and act decisively on independence.
    I am sure my comments will get a negative reaction from the faithful. If you read the comments sections in the National you will know many are leaving the party or unhappy at the lack of leadership.

    • JSM says:

      I totally agree with you. Everyone needs to come together and work together for independence. Sadly, that won’t happen.

      • This does require the small parties that Scots didn’t want in power to accept who Scots did want to lead the campaign (SNP with some Green influence).

        If Scots had voted for Alba in sufficient numbers to elect some Alba MSPs (which is just 5% in a singe region aka Margo), then I’d be all for these getting a seat at the table. Same if Scots had elected some Alba MPs. However, to have Alba calling some shots when Scots didn’t want any Alba MSPs/MPs, is actually going against popular will, and risks angering the electorate. Alba are free to suggest ideas and the SNP/Greens should listen, not discounting anything sensible, but Alba openly attacking the latter can only undermine the movement, much to the glee of the enemy.

        The will of the people was an SNP + Green coalition to take us forward. Alba etc should accept the will of Scots, and offer their services to the campaign. This would show they put Scotland before their own party political ambitions. If the SNP/Greens make a mess of things, Alba can put themselves forward at future elections saying they can do a better job. That is the constructive approach.

    • Andy, you blieve the BTL comments that slag the SNP..like you are doing here in a not so round about way.
      Alex Salmond is electoral poison. Kenny McAskill betrayed the poor souls who voted for him under an SNP banner.
      Salmond and MacAskill spend their days attacking the SNP, to no avail; there’s only a handful of them really.

      Don’t worry, Salmond will be invited on to TV and interviewed by the Blahs when the campaign begins in earnest. He is a friend of the Brits, and is guaranteed to attack the SNP/Green coalition every chance he gets.
      Politically Salmond is an old man now..yet he still craves publicity and relevance.
      Like Sillars, and McLeish, and Brown, and well. me, there time has gone.
      2% of the vote; 0% of the relevance.
      And the Common Weal?

    • Clive Scott says:

      Get over yourself and support the SNP, the only party that can bring about an independent Scotland.

  2. Happy New Year Peter, Paul, and the Kavanagh clan.

    Agreed. There shall be a UKGE this year.

    By the end of the financial year, England will be on its knees.

    They are short 55,000 nurses now, and the Banks already run England, not the Blue Tories.

    They are determined to make the poor pay, and even the ‘hard pressed middle’, rather than upset the Filthy Rich in their 50 million pound Kensington town houses.

    The disparate strikes will meld into a General Strike, in England, possibly Wales, and England will grind to a halt, if it hasn’t already.

    Sarwar will be on his feet blaming NS personally for (insert name) some health problem or other, and Dross will prattle on about the education attainment gap not narrowing, and the Tailor’s Dummy will shriek ‘Mental Health!!!’ on Better Together cue; the Jock Brits would rather that their fellow Scots citizens sink with England rather than fight for Scotland.

    We are a militarily occupied colony of England now that their SC has removed our sovereignty.
    They are stealing our oil, gas, whisky, timber, wind, wave and hydro energy. Next it will be our drinking water.

    Even when we opt for Self Determination at he next time of asking, they will say No, you are our conquered territory.

    Then Dross Jack Murray and Carmichael will know what a nation spurned is capable of.

  3. Bob Lamont says:

    Spot on Paul, but I’d add the the point it is not only Scotland’s democracy under threat but England’s – In polling several months back, over 60 % of ENGLAND’s electorate were in favour of reversing Brexit and supporting the right of Scots to hold IR2 – The kicker here is there is no difference to the position of either of England’s principal parties, they’re agin both.

    I’ve never in my lifetime seen ANY government AND media so blatantly conspire to overthrow and misrepresent an electorate.

    • Legerwood says:

      Perhaps the position of Labour and the Tories against reversing Brexit has an element of making a virtue out of necessity about it. They know full well that the EU is unlikely to welcome them with open arms, if it welcomed the UK back at all. They also know that the EU would hold all the aces in any negotiations and the terms the EU would offer would be but a pale shadow of what the UK had before. Thus follows a humiliation that would surely end either party whichever is the supplicant.

      • Bob Lamont says:

        True, but they need no go full reverse rather than lessen the progressive damage – As it stands in combination with their IR2 deafness, the message to the electorate from politicians is not one of listening but dictating, hence alienating the electorate…
        Were there a viable third choice in England, I suspect they’d trounce both…

      • Alan D says:

        I think you’re only half right there. It would be a humiliation for the Tories to reverse Brexit. For Labour? An easy concession to make, because the only thing they have to do is declare that Brexit was wrong, stupid and an accident seized upon by opportunists.

        There is nowhere near as much negotiation involved in joining the EU now as there was in leaving it. The system is established and new applicants can basically take it or leave it at the point of application.

        As for a “pale shadow,” it’s true that the EU won’t offer the old rebate. That’s gone, but EU membership isn’t as expensive as red buses would have us believe. Of the formal opt-outs, we know that there are voluntary, non-compulsory stages in joining the Euro which makes a formal opt-out irrelevant. The only one worth talking about is from Schengen, which is still viable because the Irish government will probably be an advocate for it. The final arrangements, even if not quite as good as what existed prior to 2016, can still be honestly described as “Germany-plus” whether it is applied to the UK or Scotland and England:
        1) Single market and customs union membership
        2) Using our currencies
        3) Not in Schengen, common travel area is maintained
        4) Political union membership comes after several years of the above.

        When everyone holding the levers agree, things can happen very quickly. I do not believe Labour when they say they’re not going to reverse Brexit; the economic prize is too vast to pass up for a party looking forwards to two or three terms in government. They’re probably just hedging their bets for now, in case the electorate somehow swings back into favour of Brexit.

        The scale of Labour’s challenge can’t be blithely waved off. Voter ID and boundary changes are through and I’ve seen claims that they’re going to make Labour need a ~12% national lead just to draw with the Tories on number of seats won. The lead may be 25% now, but the Tories can call one when/if it gets down to around 10-15% and they’re still in the race.

        Cheating bastards.

        • JP58 says:

          I don’t think the EU will make it easy for UK to rejoin. Apart from fact UK wasn’t a committed member and had several opt outs I cannot see EU politically making it easy or quick for a country that left to get back in again- this would set a terrible precedent. To be frank it is in EUs interest for UK to suffer for leaving and for this to be transparent for all to see.
          I do thinkEU would be happy to admit an independent Scotland. From their point of view UK leaves EU claiming EU will break up and instead UK breaks up and a former member of UK joins EU. This would be a significant political win for EU.

          • Hamish100 says:


          • Azel says:

            Thinking of it, that would mean that interestingly enough, English remainers should agitate for Scottish independance and/or Irish reunification: the UK breaking up or having to let go of Northern Ireland would probably be a visible enough wound that the UK getting back in would be more palatable.

  4. Izzie says:

    Happy new year Peter and Paul. We have a fight ahead. I hope and pray that we can engage ALL peoples in our struggle including Alec Salmond and his supporters. We cannot afford to be divided.

  5. Dr Jim says:

    We are in the blame scatter game played by the media to sew confusion within people as to what to do? how to proceed?
    This is another kick the can tactic by the British to extend their life in power and authority, *confusion to the enemy* except in this case *the enemy* is us the people of Scotland
    If you can keep a people turning on themselves, governing that nation becomes easy because people desire leadership, a purpose, they want to see an end point, a result for what they’re being asked to do, so confuse them and it doesn’t matter how you do it, just keep them on the back foot and you win by disuniting those you pretend to unite, the UK of England has been the most successful dictatorship in the world at achieving this

    The media in Scotland will comply with all instructions from Westminster, blame Nicola Sturgeon, blame Vladimir Putin, blame the EU, blame the global economy but normalise the goings on in Westminster as *problems we all have to face together* that Westminster and only Westminster can resolve

    Very soon we will hear from *experts* who will insist that the NHS in its current form cannot continue to exist, they will use words like *unaffordable* *unviable* as the scramble to avoid using the word privatisation, but be very sure that’s exactly what they’ll mean
    They’ll begin with the unviability of social care and move on to doctors appointments and a separate body for prescription medicines, because they will not follow the sensible model of general taxation increases to fund public services
    They must keep convincing the people of ideological aspirational politics leading to wealth or they themselves will bear the scrutiny of their own increasing wealth

    The measuring of amounts of money is not the wealth of a country, the real measure is health welfare and contentment, the very things the Tories and Labour stand against the people ever realizing, because if they do then the people will understand exactly what kind of fascists and nasty money grabbing thieving individuals have been doing to con them into believing in lifestyles that only a chosen very few can ever achieve

    They call it *growth*
    Selling this aspiration to continual financial growth is the planet killer and they know it, nothing on earth can keep growing till infinity, there are the final consequences of everything dies eventually, and they know that too, but they’re not telling you that are they, you might stop paying, and that would never do

    • Douglas Ross, Anas Sarwar, and Alex Coll-Hamilton are hell bent on destroying Scotland.
      They are actively attempting to undermine our sacred institutions, Health, Education, Pensions, Law and Order, the well being of our citizens, ably abetted by Glenn Campbell et al., for the Greater Good of their paymasters, the English Oligarchy.
      The Union is finished.

      That any so called ‘Socialist’ (Sarwar millionaire dentist son of a billionaire, whose pro Trident, pro Brexit, pro a ‘mixed economy’ (private) Health Service, whose kids are in private education) can get on their pins and attacks Swinney’s budget, is a disgrace to the Labour Movement.

      Fat lazy hangers on who have had no responsibility or accountability because we the people have chose an alternative path.
      Self Determination.
      Now that the English have developed buyer’s remorse and want back into the EU, to save all those pesky delays at immigration when they jet off to Tenerife, and we scots voted to Remain in the EU, will some hack please ask Dross and Sarwar why they continue to ignore the will of their fellow Scots?
      The answer is simple of course; they have been commanded to do so by their English Masters.

      They are beneath contempt.
      The Tailor’s Dummy is of no political consequence, yet still get column inches and air time…
      I am a Scot; I am European, not British/English as Riccccch Sunak describes himself.
      There is no turning back.

      • I’m so teed off with this lot of chancers and brigands that I am mistyping my past tense accompanying the past participle auxiliary verb now.
        ‘…we, the people, have chosen’.
        Standards, my boy, standards.

  6. exile says:

    Thank you Paul for all you do for Scotland, and a Happy New Year to you and Peter.

  7. scotiahazel says:

    Happy New Year to you and Peter. I hope you had a good rest. We have missed you and your wise words.

  8. Welsh_Siôn says:

    Happy New Year one and all.

    You may have noticed that First Minister Drakeford is already in UKGE mode.


    First Minister reveals Welsh Labour is geared up for snap general election

    01 Jan 2023 2 minute read

    First Minister Mark Drakeford says he believes the UK Government could collapse at any time and has told the Labour party in Wales to be prepared for a general election in the new year.

    Speaking to the Guardian, Mr Drakeford said the UK is at a very low ebb and suggested the Conservative government could be “overwhelmed” to the point of calling a snap election.

    Arguing that the UK is in need of a fresh start, he added: “We do not need 18 months of an exhausted government that has lost credibility and cannot command even the support of its own MPs, staggering on.”

    Claiming a “general election could come at any time”, Mr Drakeford also highlighted Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s vulnerability and his need to rely on the backing of his backbench MPs over two “relatively modest” domestic policies: compulsory housebuilding targets and the moratorium on new onshore wind projects, in recent weeks.


    Here’s the Guardian piece, too:


    Now, if the Tories do manage to last until January 2025, Cymru/Wales will also have a new FM by then as Drakeford himself has said he will stepping down towards mid-/end of 2024.

    Interesting times, eh?

    • Aye, and folks should mind that the reason English Labour are all brexity is that the EU will not allow Britain back. They are not going to reopen negotiations with Brengland. End of.

      If Scotland / Wales / Ni vote for indy / reunification as appropriate, we can all get in nae bother. But Brengland? No chance. That bridge has been truly burnt. Did nothing but moan for coming on 50 years, demanding special treatment while slagging off the bloc. Then finally being all racist towards its citizens and telling them all to f’off as it was so special it could uniquely be a massive success without them.

      Ironically, the only way back in for England is as England. If the UK collapses with England emerging as a modest sized European country again, you will find the EU receptive to opening up discussions about closer ties and maybe membership. But not a chance in hell as long as the last pompous and arrogant remnants of the British empire still swings its gammon belly around picking drunken fights with the neighbours.

      • Welsh_Siôn says:

        But not a chance in hell as long as the last pompous and arrogant remnants of the British empire still swings its gammon belly around picking drunken fights with the neighbours.


        I will see Loch Ness drained with a sieve first before this happens.

      • Frozennorth says:

        Couldn’t be more correct, the Europeans consider that they are well shot of Britain and are quite content to stand back and let the whole sorry mess fall apart. Who can blame them?

      • Alan D says:

        There’s no negotiating with the EU upon the terms and conditions of access/membership. There never was, really. They gave the UK a menu of options known as Barnier’s Staircase and made it clear that Northern Ireland could not leave the single market/customs union without breaking the Good Friday Agreement. What then followed was several years of denialism and attempted cherry-picking as the GB government gaslit its own electorate into descending that staircase all the way to the bottom.

        The terms and conditions for rejoining are clear. The UK even helped write them up while it was a member. https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=LEGISSUM:accession_criteria_copenhague

        I suspect there’ll be a number of years between the UK(or its successor states) rejoining the single market/customs union and its rejoining the political community. I see a strong possibility that the UK rejoins that single market, but its successor states are the ones to make that final step back into the political community.

    • Hamish100 says:

      Welsh Sion
      I see the torygraph is saying English taxpayers are paying for Welsh workers staying at home due to covid and new hybrid working practices.
      Funny, I though Scots, Welsh and Irish were paying for parties at Nos 10 and 11, paying £billions to empty ppe contracts to support wayward tories lords and ladies.
      Sad to see so called journalists printing Tory propaganda without question.
      Shame on Cymru for sponging off the poor sassenachs/ Anglo Saxons -(ironic)

      • Welsh_Siôn says:

        Celts = Subsidy junkies.

        Didntchaknow? 😉

        • Dr Jim says:

          Aye, the Scots the Irish and the Welsh, we’re all useless sponging lazy wasters
          and yet the English are always so desperate to hang on to us
          Do we think that might mean they’ll have to start calling themselves all these derogatory names having no one else to blame? like the people in the North of England or the West of England or East of England? just never the South, coz well, donors voters party members buddies pals and neighbours live there

  9. Hamish100 says:


    As one of the “ faithful” – is this meant to be derisory? I cannot and will not be diverted from what I hope and promise will be a successful win for independence. If I can misquote from a movie “ failure is not an option”.

    For those doubters – seem to be many these days encouraged by the underminers, try walking the streets in the 70’s when you are spat upon by fellow Scots who looked on the SNP as traitors ( to the Brit state), as tartan tories ( successfully propagated by liebour), shut door after shut door and when the idea of having a Scots Parliament was pie in the sky.

    Sad to see the same tactics at work. Do we never learn? Andy have faith.
    It is a positive emotion but temper it with the reality of politics todays world.

    • Eilidh says:

      Being spat upon as an Snp/Independence supporter didn’t just happen in the 1970s Hamish it happened to a friend of mine when she was volunteering at a Yes stall during the Indyref campaign in 2014 in a nice area aka Bearsden Cross. Proof that are obnoxious morons everywhere.
      Great article Paul Happy New Year to you and Peter and all who read your blog. Let’s hope this year is better than the last one

  10. The closer we get to election time, the more panicking Tory MPs will be agitating for the Return of the King—-Boris—-the only one who can save their bacon (they think).

    How good would THAT be for Auld Scotia?

  11. Gordon says:

    The Tories will not last a year with the continued mess going on. The continued strikes and thevrest if the Tory mismanagement.

    Scotland will get Ibdependence when everyone goes out and votes for it at every election. A high turnout of Independistas at every election will get rid of the opposition, The turnout should be higher at every election. Local council elections (40%). Holyrood elections (50%) GE (60%) Ref (85%) at their highest. People who support Independence need to get out and vote. Every election. Take another with them. To get rid of the opposition. No opposition- whose to stop it. Get out and vote with a higher turnout at every election. SNP/SNP etc. At every election. Use it or lose it. Democracy. Instead of complaining. On to victory.

  12. Ken says:

    Internet 1990’s. Devolution 2000.

    Independence nearly 100 years after Universal Suffrage. 1928.

  13. keaton says:

    Will be interesting to see what concrete conclusions come out of the special conference.

    Do we agree that for the plebiscite to work, the independence parties need to run on a single-issue manifesto? It’s hard to see how anything else would avoid ambiguity about what the result actually meant.

    • Golfnut says:

      Withdrawing from the Treaty of Union is the only issue that westminster can’t ignore. Treaties come under the jurisdiction of international law and not domestic law, neither the Supreme court nor indeed the union Parliament which was created by the Treaty have any say on this single issue.

      • keaton says:

        Well, they can and certainly will try to ignore a 50%+1 result. We don’t just automatically become independent in that eventuality.

        But I think the conference is supposed to be less about the next step if that’s achieved and more about how the plebiscite will actually work. For me by far the most important issue is that of the manifesto.

      • Golfnut says:

        No they cant, whether it’s 50%+1 or a majority of MP’s elected, that’s our decision.
        ‘ There is no law that I know of that prevents one signatory to a Treaty from withdrawing from that Treaty if they wish to do so’, England’s Attorney General addressing Parliament on leaving the EU.
        As far as what’s in the manifesto’s of the various party’s, I’m sure they will contain a mixture of valid greivances( dragged out of the EU) and their own particular view on how negotiations will be conducted and their vision on a future Scotland, what’s important though is that each party has as it’s central plank, permission from the people of Scotland to withdraw from the Treaty of Union.

        • keaton says:

          As far as what’s in the manifesto’s of the various party’s, I’m sure they will contain a mixture of valid greivances( dragged out of the EU) and their own particular view on how negotiations will be conducted and their vision on a future Scotland, what’s important though is that each party has as it’s central plank, permission from the people of Scotland to withdraw from the Treaty of Union.

          My point is that it would have to be more than the central plank. If the manifesto promises both independence negotiations and, I dunno, trams in Glasgow, how does a canvasser answer the question “I want independence but not the trams (or vice versa). Should I vote for you?”

          • Golfnut says:

            “My point is that it would have to be more than the central plank”
            Does it? Why?
            I know that if I was writing the manifesto I would keep it simple.
            How we we deal with our part ownership of Trident
            Why we are retaining Sterling temporarily because of our part ownership of the BOE.
            Debt and asset exchange.
            Reparation due to Scotland.
            Transition period.
            But, why do we need to?

            • keaton says:

              Oh, I think it’s fine for the manifesto to include the proposed terms of independence. I’m saying that it shouldn’t be treated like a normal manifesto and include any proposals unrelated to independence, because that muddies the meaning of any mandate they receive.

              Trams was a bad example, being devolved. But suppose the manifesto includes proposals on drug policy. If an SNP representative is asked whether someone who supports independence but opposes the drug policy should vote for them, what’s the answer? If they say no, they’re throwing away a vote for independence because of a side issue. If they say yes, they’re admitting the drug policy is redundant, so why’s it even in there?

              • iusedtobeenglish says:

                ” If an SNP representative is asked whether someone who supports independence but opposes the drug policy should vote for them, what’s the answer? “

                Would the answer not be along the lines of:
                “If we have a Scottish Government with the full range of powers – like drugs, energy prices, welfare, the EU, financing the SNHS etc – and enough of the people of Scotland don’t like what that Government (SNP or other) is doing, they can vote it out. Our Government can’t just turn round and say “Suck it up”. Like the ukgov can. Like That Nice Mr Jack DID.

                Fact is that the ukgov doesn’t care whether the people of the ‘devolved nations’ agree with them or not. They don’t have to. An independent Scotland’s Government would have to because the people can send them packing.

                So YES, vote for independence even if you don’t agree with all the policies because that’s the only way you get a say in changing them.”

  14. Dr Jim says:

    No matter what’s decided there’ll be a row about it, it’ll be designed and paid for by Westminster and engineered and enacted in Scotland to undermine any co-operation between anybody
    I expect the FM and her advisors will be well aware of what’s to come and from whom, disguised under the usual moans complaints and social media conspiracy spreaders, then to be taken up by the British media in Scotland to amplify “the genuine concerns”

    Nothing ever happens cleanly in Scottish politics without the barrage from the “concerned”

  15. Michael Bell says:

    That the private media in Scotland should be so contemptuously unrepresentative of public opinion is scandal enough. But the private sector in the United Kingdom is woefully used to behaving pretty much as it likes. For the British Broadcasting Corporation, which loves to trumpet its mandate of impartiality with such absurd self-congratulation but which has neither the imagination nor the honesty to recognise its own habitual breach of it, I have no words. Well, maybe a few.

  16. Dr Jim says:

    Britain the UK England are all one and the same to those who wish to retain the status quo
    When the BBC or Sky or Channel 4 or any of the so called news channels speak of the UK they mean England, the rest of us Scots Welsh and Irish are extraneous regions of territory to them and only have importance when they require our assets land or access to use as collateral for loans to themselves

    Titles are also important to them, no Scotland no UK, and that’s embarrassingly inconvenient in their pretense to power and global recognition, for goodness sake they still can’t admit defeat over Ireland, even when they present the weather forecast they wave their arms over the Republic of Ireland without mention as though it doesn’t exist until that weather touches the North of Ireland before pointing it out

    England, they are a small minded cabal of tricksters who have propagandised and brainwashed their own people into believing the world would be less than nothing without them and all those damn Johnny Foreigners should think themselves lucky that England UK Great Britain is watching over them ready to intervene to save the day should disaster befall the world, after all they are (“English and are a generous people”) Margaret Thatcher

  17. ST says:

    Happy New year to you and yours.
    Unfortunately I think there is little chance of GE this year.Tory turkeys do not vote for Xmas.
    The most likely outcome is a Tory leadership change after the May local elections.
    Maybe then there is a snap election.

  18. Bruce MacDougall says:

    No matter how big a winning margin is achieved 50+1%, 60% or even 70%, Westminster will not submit to a democratic vote. They simply have to much too lose. It will take another step the UN and the International Court of Justice to force them to negotiate. Which will take another 18 months to 2 years to complete. Why wait when we can use the UN and the International Court of Justice with the Vienna Convention and decolonisation process NOW.

    • Alex Clark says:

      I’d love to know what evidence you would provide to any court or International body that would prove to them that the people of Scotland wanted it to become an Independent country.

    • Golfnut says:

      Why does it have to be one or the other, can the processes not work side by side.
      Independence won’t be granted by westminster, only Dicey diddies cling to that notion, UK domestic law is irrelevant, we require only international recognition and that doesn’t require a court. Will the international court or the UN get involved? Only if the English government refuse to negotiate a new Treaty between the two Kingdoms. Going by Westminsters record dealing with the EU it’s likely the international community will have to get involved but independence doesn’t have to wait for that to be concluded.

  19. Alex Clark says:

    A quote from Willie Rennie on STV today.

    “That’s a sad state of affairs for our country to be in but it is an inevitable consequence of the decisions that successive SNP administrations have taken.”

    This most important issue that the Lib Dems want to highlight after raising yet another FOI request is that Scotland’s councils have closed 32% of public toilets since 2007.

    The cuts to the Scottish budget that have been imposed since the Tories slashed spending and imposed austeriety on the UK after the financial crash in 2008 doesn’t get a mention.

    According to Willie Rennie, once again it’s all the fault of that bad SNP.

    Fall in number of public toilets caused by SNP underfunding – Lib Dems


    • Dr Jim says:

      The budget’s been slashed for a slash

    • Hamish100 says:

      Willie rennie seems to forget his diddy party keeping Cameron and Osborne in power, his pal Carmichael as SoSS , Mundel his deputy concocting with the torygraph the lies over the French Ambassador discussion with Nicola Sturgeon. Of course promoted by the BBC’s Cook who got a thank you by being sent to the USA to lie low.
      Lib Dems and public toilets is a whole other story.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Lib Dem MSPs in Holyrood 2017-2019 = 12
      Lib Dem MSPs in Holyrood 2021 onward = 4
      There does appear to be a correlation between Lib Dems and Public Toilets…

      • Alex Clark says:

        That’s a sad state of affairs for the Lib Dems to be in but it is an inevitable consequence of the decisions that Willie Rennie has taken.

        Same goes for Labour, a sad state of affairs indeed.

  20. bringiton says:

    We can do nothing to further the cause of independence without the clear support of a majority of our electorate.
    The law in the UK states that Scotland does not have the right to self determination unless a majority of English MPs agree to it.
    That is not self determination as internationally understood by any stretch.
    I hope that more Scots waken up to the reality that within the UK,Scotland has no say and that our wishes are simply ignored by what is,to all intents and purposes,an English parliament.
    The founding principles of the English parliament have,since it’s inception been,secrecy,stealth,lies and deceit.
    This was what underpinned the so called Devolution Settlement peddled by New Labour.
    Just another attempt to maintain England’s control of Scotland with the reality being that Westminster,should it desire,could strike down any legislation passed by Holyrood.
    That is the reality that Scots need to understand.

  21. Ken says:

    The unionists councils cut the toilets. Instead spending £Billions on useless monstrosities project not supported by the majority electorate. Wasting monies like their is no tomorrow. Instead of supporting essential services. There are toilets in other places, shopping places and premises. Still available to use. Calculating how many have closed by how many have opened in other places. Or commercial premises, Still available to use. Especially if people are caught short. Not a major issue. Unionist councils are to blame.

  22. Ken says:

    £250million spend on improved drug rehab facilities. Over five years. £5Million a year is an improvement in the economy and saving lives. Spend £Millions to save £Billions. A better policy. Supported by the majority for better welfare.

  23. Ken says:

    £50Million a year on average. Increased spending on drug rehabilitation is an improvement and will save people’s lives. An increase in proper total abstinence rehab facilities.

  24. Ken says:

    @ £50million on average over five years. An improvement in drug rehab facilities will save lives and stability.

  25. Ken says:

    If people want and support Independence they need to get out and vote for it at every election. Get rid of the opposition. There will be no one to oppose it.

    A higher turnout. at every election.

  26. Capella says:

    New think tank The Bottom Line says Scotland has to be independent to deal with economic decline.

    Scotland staying in UK ‘risks wasting historic green opportunity’

    “What will be necessary, will be to address the underlying cause, which is the underperformance of the UK economy, of which Scotland has been a part.”

    The Bottom Line, founded by Blackett, economist David Simpson and former businessman and SNP MP Roger Mullin, blamed Scotland’s sluggish economic growth on its continued membership of the UK.

    “Had the Scottish economy performed as well as the average small advanced economy in the last two decades it would have generated a fiscal surplus, even before taking oil revenues into account,” the report said.

    “The Scottish economy grew so slowly because economic policy is reserved to Westminster and Scotland’s needs and opportunities are ignored.

    “UK Government policy has been responsible, in large part, for the UK economy growing significantly more slowly over the last two decades than other comparable economies.”


  27. Capella says:

    A new independence radio station with a secret weapon – politeness.

    Meet the pro-indy radio station developing a global reach

    HOW do you attract more people to supporting Scottish independence? Since the referendum in 2014, winning over those hostile to the idea of self-determination is still something Yes campaigners are having to work on every day.

    But the team at pro-independence radio station Caledon Radio believe they have the answers. “If we want to get people voting for independence, we have to find ways to attract them to the positive message,” said presenter and founder Norrie Hunter.

    “Our mission is to keep afloat that independence message and keep up the conversation. It’s about working together with different people to promote Scotland.”

    The internet station began broadcasting at the end of 2019 after Hunter – who used to work for the BBC – became frustrated with the biased and negative output of mainstream media when it came to Scottish news…

    But although he was in the pro-independence camp, he was keen not to shove it in anyone’s face. Instead, before the station even hit the airwaves, he went out to the likes of golf clubs, churches and bowling clubs to find out people’s views on Scottish politics.

    To his amazement, many thought you just voted Labour or Conservative and that was it. They didn’t know much about who any prominent politicians were or the state of the country.

    But nor did they push Hunter away when he tried to talk to them about different points of view, and it became clear there was a simple starting point.


  28. Golfnut says:

    Apologise to those not on FB.
    National Grid cost to maintain the grid £350 million, profit £4 billion. Set to double next year.
    Shareholders laughing all the way to the bank.


    • Bob Lamont says:

      You mean apologies to those not subscribed to “In-D-Car”on Facebook, that’s why so many of your links have failed 😉

  29. If the figure of 130,000 vacancies quoted by a variety of English Health ‘professionals’ interviewed in interminable loop of NHS crisis TV pieces is correct, then surely there are salaries and wages for this shortfall available now to pay those in post decent wages?
    No mention of Brexit and the mass exodus of European health workers anywhere.
    It’s Putin’s fault.
    England is crumbling to dust; only a GE will stop the rot; or so they think.
    The Red Tories are as bad…
    It is going to be quite a year.

  30. davetewart says:

    The totally independent pay review committee were told that there was a limit of 3 % salary rise in the budget.
    They have that money available but the inflation rate has left them in negative salary mode, more of the no more money available.
    Ultimate irony is hearing british gas advert saying theyare donating energy to the poor whilst ripping everybody off with high prices and paying out their shareholders big dividends.
    The cash from their generosity isn’t a tenth of the projected cost of the coronation to come.

    An interesting year ahead right enough, we will all be spinning with all the u turns and lies from the do nothing government.

    Passengers from China will be offered a test but don’t need to comply.

  31. yesindyref2 says:

    Dr McMillan said: “So while most Scots are firmly decided one way or the other, …


    Doncha just love it when experts start an assertion with just another assertion which can be quickly destroyed, annihilated, sacked, discarded. disassembled, proven as nonsense, if only he had paid attention to the Scottish Social Attitudes Surveys and the trend in them.

    Very clearly there is no such thing as “most Scots are firmly decided” meaning they won’t change their minds – and it’s not “one way or the other”, as support for devolution steadily moves to being support for independence. In fact, the “the other” way which can be loosely translated to “status quo” or “No”, is down to about 25% as at 2021, I’m far too lazy to bother looking it up.

    As indeed, was he.

    Happy New Year! And may it bring us all we want 🙂

    • Even if most Scots were so firmly decided to the extent they’ll never change their minds, the UK is still totally fucked because the electorate is changing more to Yes each day even if individuals are not.

      Mini Miss S_S will be old enough to vote Yes / SNP for Holyrood by late October next year for example.

    • JP58 says:

      There is an element of truth in what Dr McMillan is saying as it will be psychologically difficult for someone to change their mind if they voted in 2014 as they need to admit they may have been wrong. (I strongly suspect that if vote to leave EU had been in 2014 and Independence Referendum had been in 2016 Yes would have won.)
      Yes side need to realistic and accept this aspect of human nature. However in such circumstances all some people (soft no’s) need is a good enough reason to justify changing their mind to themselves and others. Brexit and SC ruling are 2 examples of such reasons.
      Boris Johnson’s form of English nationalism is another reason and he may yet reappear as Tory leader and PM later in 2023!?.
      The other factor at play is demographics with a higher proportion of No supporters leaving us and similarly a higher proportion of younger Yes supporters being able to vote.
      So while I agree with the what the pollsters are saying there is still every opportunity for Yes to build support up to a solid 60% level over next 5 to 10 years. When this is achieved the question changes from whether Scotland wants to be independent but to how do we implement clear wish of majority to be inde

      • While some people will be stubborn like you say…

        My experience is lots of No people made a mistake last time, or at least now recognise in hindsight they did so, and want to vote Yes next time. This ties in with the main shift being Y->N in polling. It’s not just demographics.

        Those that don’t want to admit they made a mistake can tell pollsters they plan to vote Yes this time and do that on the day without anyone knowing.

  32. Hamish100 says:

    With the hallabaloo over the NHS I happened to tune into Radio Ulster where the wearing of masks should you have a cold and are in a public place is now being recommended. It is a reasonable request and should be publicised more widely.

    I wonder if we should as a temporary measure call in volunteer first aiders trained in immediate first aid, CPR, use of defibrillators etc to allow front line staff ( if clinically appropriate) a 15 minute break or so but to provide background support to the hard pressed front line staff? Obviously under supervision.

    Where there is minor injury ailments such as a stubbed toe or a small graze then maybe they are just as capable to clean a wound or two? Every little helps.

  33. Hamish100 says:

    Immediate should have read emergency.

  34. Dr Jim says:

    As the winter viruses continue to worsen and Covid is still a threat top medics around the world are recommending the use of face coverings again if you’re ill or feeling ill so as to control infection in the way we’ve done over the last couple of years, and this is where the Tories once again display their natural aversion to anything they don’t get to decide or order

    Fury has broken out in the Tory ranks over the truth that face coverings actually work with one Tory MP describing face coverings as *filthy rags* and if the woke socialist doctors try to make it mandatory there’ll be outright disobedience

    Words are sometimes insufficient to describe the vile values of the Tory party but here’s a thought for the rest of us in Scotland Wales and the North of Ireland

    None of our countries have voted Tory in 60 years so we are not responsible and get no say over who governs our countries, the voters of England decide who the UK government is

    What does this tell you about the mentality and consideration for others of the voters who keep voting for the same thing even though 3 out of the four countries of the UK of Great Britain keep telling them they’re wrong, and what does it tell you about the imperative and desperate need not to be part of a system that gives Scotland no vote and no consideration on the importance even over our own health

    Within the next ten years England’s NHS will be almost fully privatised causing great economic damage to Scotland, and it’s no use the Unionists banging on about health being devolved when the companies who control the prices of drugs are controlled by American style market profits in England and Scotland’s taxation still flows to the British treasury before decisions are made by governments we do not vote for as to how much they return to Scotland

    England as a country has lost control of itself and the voters in that country will look for what they are told is the easiest way to Tory imaginary prosperity
    Scotland Wales and the North of Ireland voters don’t agree with England but we’ll be stuck with whatever they decide

    The first rule of self defence is not to be there, if Scotland remains in this union the stupidity of England will kill us, economically and in reality

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