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Scottish Politics 2011-2017


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Posted
  • Location: Bramley, Hampshire, 70m asl
  • Location: Bramley, Hampshire, 70m asl

    If it were say other way round and England was for example seeking independence, who would be best candidate then?Dog-doo-dahs.

    Simples....Gretna Green

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    And that ignorant, offensive, rant sums up exactly why the YES campaign failed  

    Good god. What a load of boarish spiteful bile from bad losers has been posted during the night. I actually dread to think how Scotland would be run if this is representative of how the yes vote behav

    I'm disappointed in the lack of grace shown by some across the net in accepting this No vote. A complete lack of any empathy and understanding as to why fellow Scots didn't vote Yes.   I personally

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    How does that compare with N Ireland or, until recently, Wales?I suspect in an Independent Scotland, more people would still tune in to watch Liverpool v Man Utd than Clyde v Peterhead?  And that's what it's all about - nothing whatsoever to do with anglocentricism.The EPL is the most watched football league in the world, like it or not.  At least at present your national broadcaster is spending the money on matches from the same country - in future, the Scottish Boradcasting Corporation (or whatever) will be spending more money to broadcast foreign games than it does domestic ones. btw, as an aside, STV makes TV programmes for the BBC

     

    I just spotted this massively arrogant post.

     

    I think you miss the point entirely too.

     

    I imagine a Clyde or Peterhead supporter would rather their license fee be spent on broadcasting games their team were playing in, even if just on the Radio. Certainly how those football fans I know feel.

     

    Also, the BBC is not Scotland's national broadcaster; the clue is in the name and broadcasting is not devolved to Scotland. It is a state Broadcaster - State TV - not national. It is the mouthpiece of the British State in Scotland which is why it's not devolved; it's role is to promote the British state.

     

    Also, in the world of football (and many other sports), Scotland is an 'independent' country. That's why we have the SFA, the SPL, our own national team etc. So, EPL games broadcast by the BBC are not 'from the same country'. They are no different to e.g. Serie A games; they are from the league of a different country. I'd have thought you'd have known this; I mean who won the world cup in 1966? Certainly wasn't the UKoGB.

     

    Personally, I have never in my life come across a Scot that supported a team in England as their primary allegiance. Why on earth would they? They might enjoy watching some of the bigger matches in the EPL or other European leagues, but you won't see many Man U strips walking around Edinburgh. They support Celtic, Hearts, Motherwell, Rangers, Inverness Caley etc. 

     

    As for the EPL being popular globally; it's popular in countries that don't have any half decent league of their own like India for example. You won't find many EPL team fans in e.g. Germany, Spain, Italy or France. They have great leagues and international cup winning teams unlike the UK.

     

    Returning to the BBC licence fee. It is all very well that Sky decide commercially whether they want to screen Scottish football. However, BBC Scotland have a duty to spend around the same on Scottish games for a Scottish audience as BBC England do on English games for an English audience.

     

    Personally, I don't watch league football, but do torture myself watching Scotland play when I can. I find it a bloody joke that often I can't because the BBC have decided not to bother showing the game. 'National broadcaster' my ass.

     

    The pro-union campaign previously were using the BBC as a selling point of the UK. Since the kiddie fiddling scandals, widespread complaints about bias and massive cuts to BBC Scotland's budget, they've gone rather quiet on this one. The huge cuts to football coverage will not help. 

     

    --

     

    EDIT

     

    I imagine Greenock Morton fans would have preferred coverage of this game to Liverpool v Man U. Will be a few celebrations in Greenock tonight. I doubt the same would be the case if Man U won the EPL. 

     

    http://www.heraldscotland.com/sport/football/celtic-0-morton-1-lennon-philosophical-on-a-night-that-belongs-to-greenock-men.22249104

     

    Celtic 0 Morton 1: Lennon philosophical on a night that belongs to Greenock men

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    Anyway, interesting day today.

     

    As mentioned in the past, my best mate since the age of 11 has traditionally been pro-union.

     

    He’s admitted it comes down in a large degree to sentiment; while he’s lived his entire life in Scotland, his mother is English and father half English, half Scottish; hence considerable family ties across the border. While he proudly wears his grandmother’s tartan, he also has proudly worn the union flag when competing in triathlon events globally. He’s one of the 18% Scottish and British.

     

    We live quite far apart now and hadn’t met up for 9 months. Both our families met up today.

     

    Last time we met, we had a discussion on the referendum over a few beers. He respected my position, and I his as usual. While being for the union, he was extremely angry and upset at both the pro-union campaign and the UK government for their belittling attacks on Scotland and consistent attempts to smear the SNP who he likes and voted for in 2011. He is after all Scottish and proud of that in addition to his British identity.

     

    Anyway, while his wife is a definite Yes, I still had him marked as No.

     

    Then, the other day, when my wife facebook posted a few pics of clan SS at the independence rally, I noted that he liked the post. Ok, fair enough, were some sweet pics of our daughter so maybe nothing to it...

     

    Anyway, today, without prompting, he raised the subject of the independence march. Seemed keen to know more about it and spoke very positively about it in terms of what he had heard with respect to numbers, those marching (all the nice groups basically, i.e. pro-democracy, anti-facist, pro-equality etc).

     

    Then, he went on to mention how he’s been doing jobs in Aberdeen for oil companies installing IT networks. Told me there’s still more than half the oil left, probably a lot more, and investment is huge. Of course I knew all this, but here’s him talking about the march then bringing up the new oil boom… Talk about role reversal!

     

    I didn’t ask if he’d been re-thinking his position. I’ve never pressured him; it’s his choice and we remain best mates whatever his decision. He seems to be increasingly interested however. I’m going to put him down as soft no / don’t know now.

     

    If the pro-union campaign can push him to Yes, they are in real trouble. He was a guaranteed No and they’ve really put him off.  

    Edited by scottish skier
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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    FM’s response to Dave C’s letter where he stated he won’t debate.

     

    Dear David,

     

    I write in response to your letter of 26 September in which you say that you are unwilling to debate the future of Scotland with me.

     

    With respect, your arguments for not debating Scotland’s future are undermined by the highly political nature of your letter. You are attempting to place yourself in the position of trying to dictate the terms of the debate on Scotland’s future without being willing to publicly defend your arguments in debate. You seek power without responsibility and that is unacceptable.

     

    In addition to that clear democratic point, there are five other reasons you should reconsider and overcome your reluctance to debate Scotland’s future:

     

    Firstly, you quite rightly acknowledge the significance of the PSA’s Democratic Innovation Award for the joint work of our two administrations in holding the Scottish independence referendum under the terms of the Edinburgh Agreement. As the principal signatories of the Edinburgh Agreement, the natural progression in these circumstances is a televised, head-to-head debate.

     

    Secondly the Government which you lead is central to the entire referendum debate from the perspective of the No campaign. The reality is your Government continues to make decisions affecting Scotland, such as the implementation of the Bedroom Tax and the deeply unpopular privatisation of the Royal Mail, despite the fact an overwhelming majority of people in Scotland didn’t vote for the Conservative Party.  The fundamental argument at the heart of the case for independence is that decisions affecting Scotland should be taken by those who choose to work and live here. Your argument is that many should be taken at Westminster.

     

    Thirdly, there is worrying evidence that under the current constitutional arrangements your Government intends to cut spending in Scotland. Senior Tory figures, including Scottish Tory Leader, Ruth Davidson, have called for the current Barnett Formula to be abolished. Many Tory MPs wish Scotland’s funding to be slashed above and beyond the huge austerity squeeze already taking place. This is deeply concerning and I believe that a debate on such a crucial issue should take place so you can spell out your Government’s plans to cut public spending in Scotland in the event there is a No vote.

     

    Fourthly you suggested in Scotland last year that you had an alternative constitutional position to independence. People have the right to know what it is – if indeed it is anything at all – BEFORE the referendum takes place. 

    Finally, you suggest I should debate with the Chairman of the No Campaign Alistair Darling. I’m sure that other debates will take place in due course but for the reasons I have made clear the key debate has to be between the head of the Scottish Government – the First Minister of Scotland – and the head of the Westminster Government – the Prime Minister.

     

    There’s a whole range of things that Alistair Darling couldn’t answer. For example, the people of Scotland will want to know why your Government won’t sit down and negotiate with the Scottish Government over issues such as sterling or defence arrangements, even when Westminster parliamentary committees have called for such discussions. 

     

    In any case Mr Darling’s direct opposite number in the Yes Campaign is Chairman, Dennis Canavan, the former Labour MP who has become increasingly dismayed at an out of touch Westminster system.

     

    Following the SNP’s majority victory in the last Scottish Parliament election, you made the following comment: “I will campaign to keep our United Kingdom together with every single fibre that I have.†(Daily Telegraph May 7, 2011) You continue to direct your Government, and its taxpayer-funded resources, to make the case against an independent Scotland.

     

    That is entirely consistent with your stated intention in the quote above. However your attempt to duck a television debate on the subject is not. Either you stand up and debate or butt out of the debate for good.

    The case for a head-to-head debate between us is unanswerable. You should reconsider.

     

    Yours for Scotland

     

    ALEX SALMOND

     

     

    I think AS has a fair point. David Cameron’s government continues to pump out white papers on Scotland’s independence and it’s implications for Scotland as part of the pro-union campaign. He either stops these and UK government figures withdraw entirely from the debate, or DC debates as requested.

     

    While DC may not have been elected in Scotland, he is Scotland’s PM and the government he leads is responsible for Scotland’s block grant, taxation, welfare, defence etc. So he can’t say it’s nothing to do with him; if he does, then he should as noted, completely ‘butt out’. That and withdraw all papers on the subject so far released by the Westminster government.

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    Some interesting graphics on national identities according to area from the BBC / census data.

     

    Interesting that 'British' seems to be quite a London thing, or at least associated with bigger urban conurbations.

     

    The stronger band down the middle of Wales is intriguing.

     

    Posted Image

     

    For Scots, English, Welsh only looks like this:

     

    Posted Image

     

    So London the least 'English' and Edinburgh the least 'Scottish'. Maybe a capital thing; i.e. much higher concentrations of people from other countries? I note in the case of Edinburgh, whilst being less Scottish, it's not more British; so more international I presume... (EDIT, yep, much higher other / non-UK than the average - certainly very cosmopolitan nowadays).

     

    Interestingly, according to the BBC article, in England, it is the oldest age groups that are the least ‘British’ and most ‘English’. In Scotland, it’s generally the other way around. We don’t have breakdown’s in the Scottish census, but I think there has been some discussion of this in the SSAS. Certainly, support for the union is highest in the over 60's group and I understood this to be associated with memories of the war and post-war consensus (welfare state, nationalised industries etc) when a sense of there being a British society was the strongest it had ever been in Scotland.

     

    EDIT, and quelle surprise, but Shetland is as Scottish as the rest of Scotland on average (looking at the census breakdowns), which will annoy Tavish I imagine.

     

    EDIT2. Yes, so while these conclusions from the BBC may apply in England and to an extent in Wales:

     

    In England and Wales, the generation least likely to have ticked the box marked "British" to describe their national identity are those who lived through the war and watched the sun set on the British Empire...

     

    What emerges from the census results is that, while a majority of people in England, Scotland and Wales pick English (60%), Scottish (62%) or Welsh (58%) as their sole identity, younger and more diverse communities show higher proportions selecting a British identity.

     

    Britishness, it would appear, is an identity quite at home in the 21st Century.

     

    That's just not the case north of the Cheviots.

     

    http://www.scotcen.org.uk/media/1106700/who%20supports%20and%20opposes%20independence%20and%20why.pdf

     

     

    The age gap seems to be primarily a question of identity. Older people [in Scotland] are much more likely to have a strong sense of British identity; over half of those aged over 65 give themselves a score of six or seven on our Britishness scale, compared with just 14% of those aged 18-24. They do indeed seem to be still to be carrying the outlook and sympathies of a more unionist age. True, they are in also a little more pessimistic about the economic consequences of independence, but in this case the difference is nothing like so stark.

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    Posted
  • Location: Carryduff, County Down 420ft ASL
  • Location: Carryduff, County Down 420ft ASL

    There were two things which struck me as important in the independence referendum.

     

    The first that SS has already mentioned in that both Shetland and Orkney see themselves as just as Scottish as the majority on the mainlaind. So the "Better Together" talk about Shetland and Orkeny remaining part of the UK after a Yes vote as zero credibility, not that it had much before hand.

     

    The second thing is where the highest majority of "Just Scottish" were placed in central/south western Scotland, areas which I would have said were more likely to be No voters. These are areas with historically strong links to Northern Irish Unionism for example and have high concentrations of Orange lodges for example. These census results will be terrifying the "Better Together" campaign.

     

    It also serves to show that as an indentity that Scotland is independent, it just needs the bottle to do so completely.

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    Posted
  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)
  • Weather Preferences: Wind driven falling snow
  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)

    The second thing is where the highest majority of "Just Scottish" were placed in central/south western Scotland, areas which I would have said were more likely to be No voters. These are areas with historically strong links to Northern Irish Unionism for example and have high concentrations of Orange lodges for example. These census results will be terrifying the "Better Together" campaign.

     

     

     

    I noticed that too about the central belt, I was very surprised to see that some of those areas have the highest concentrations of Scottish feeling people. I thought there would be big British zones in parts of the west and down into Ayrshire, that's a proper shock to me!! :lol: Hopefully it reflects that the nutjobs are actually few and far between, a very vocal minority?

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    Posted
  • Location: Carryduff, County Down 420ft ASL
  • Location: Carryduff, County Down 420ft ASL

    Certainly a strange one CatchMyDrift and also serves as a warning to the Pollsters. I think SS has mentioned on more than one occasions that the Yes voters are morely likely to keep their cards close to their chests, or indeed that they will tell a pollster that they are voting No, when in fact they are voting Yes.

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    I noticed that too about the central belt, I was very surprised to see that some of those areas have the highest concentrations of Scottish feeling people. I thought there would be big British zones in parts of the west and down into Ayrshire, that's a proper shock to me!! Posted Image Hopefully it reflects that the nutjobs are actually few and far between, a very vocal minority?

     

    Must admit I was a little surprised myself by that; nicely so though.

     

    What's funny is the contrasts. In Scotland, the oldest people tend to have more loyalty to being 'British' whilst their peers of the same age in England are 'Erm, we're not British, we're English', and so presumably they see Scots as Scottish.

     

    It's a bit like N. Irish Unionists; they're the most British people in Britain. Union jacks in the garden, in the window, as bead spreads, underpants... at every rangers game, pics of the queen above the mantelpiece.... Yet the rest of Britain wants nothing to do with them!

     

    Anyway, the UKoGB must be the only state in the world where the majority of it's residents don't identify with it in terms of their national identity.

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    Meanwhile, Scottish charities calling for Holyrood to control welfare in Scotland.

     

    http://archive.is/jN9tz

     

     

    Scotland needs a separate welfare system, say charities

     

    CHARITIES are calling for a ­separate welfare state in Scotland, warning the situation where a Scottish government attempts to mitigate decisions made at Westminster is unsustainable.
     
    A paper published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) says a debate on the future of social security is essential, regardless of the outcome of next year's referendum on Scottish independence.

    Obviously has the backing of ~7 in 10 of the Scots electorate.

     

     

    I note also the SCVO find George Osborne and Johann Lamont's 'something for nothing' culture doesn't really exist in Scotland.

     

     

    Mr Downie also claimed a properly-designed Scottish welfare state could avoid creating a dependency culture, which was not what most claimants wanted. "In focus groups we have run in local communities, people have said very clearly that they want to do more to help themselves and want to be more resilient, rather than have things done to them.
    "People can do more but the present system doesn't work."
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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    I noticed that too about the central belt, I was very surprised to see that some of those areas have the highest concentrations of Scottish feeling people. I thought there would be big British zones in parts of the west and down into Ayrshire, that's a proper shock to me!! Posted Image Hopefully it reflects that the nutjobs are actually few and far between, a very vocal minority?

     

     

    On this topic.

     

    'Pride in the armed forces' is often invoked by unionists as something British we can all feel good about.

     

    Here's a little something that went on where the (thankfully very small but not exactly pleasant) ulster unionist faithful gather quite regularly.

     

    Strange that the MSM have been rather quiet about it; UK armed forces happily joining in with the anti-irish sectarian songs.

     

    http://blogs.channel4.com/alex-thomsons-view/armed-forces-involvement-sectarian-rangers-protest-pr-disaster/6182

     

    Armed Forces Involvement in a Sectarian Rangers Party a PR Disaster

     

    That is why the scenes at Ibrox on Saturday are scarcely credible and stain the reputation of Britain’s armed forces.

     
    An orderly parade of service personnel from all three forces marched onto the pitch to the accompaniment of a military band. It was dignified. The kind of thing you would see at many a carnival event across Britain.
     
    What happened next was not dignified. It was a PR disaster for all three services, and the MoD has only escaped wider damage because an event that looks so tawdry to outside eyes and ears is still considered normal in this part of Scotland. So normal that is has barely been mentioned in the Scottish media, which speaks volumes.

     

    While good it is being reported, the ignorance of the C4 reporter about Scotland is obvious. It's not considered normal at all; the reason the Scottish media haven't reported it is that it's a PR disaster for the pro-union side. These are the types of people (the ulster unionist bigots in the crowd) who'd come along to a pro-union march along with the Orange Order, BNP, EDL/SDL etc, hence there won't be any.

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    On an unrelated matter, 29% of people in Scotland can speak Scots according to the census.

     

    That's 35% of the 'Scottish' identifying population (i.e. those who had 'Scottish' as part of their identity).

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    Posted
  • Location: Evesham, Worcs, Albion
  • Location: Evesham, Worcs, Albion

    On an unrelated matter, 29% of people in Scotland can speak Scots according to the census.That's 35% of the 'Scottish' identifying population (i.e. those who had 'Scottish' as part of their identity).

    I thought it interesting that nearly as many people spoke Polish as a first language as speak the Gaelic ......

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

     


    I thought it interesting that nearly as many people spoke Polish as a first language as speak the Gaelic ......

     

     


     

     

    I'm not sure why you find that a surprise; there's a fair sized polish community here in Scotland just as there is in the rUK. I love that section in the supermarket; boy do they know how to make sausages.

     

    People often mistakenly think Scotland is somehow this country that's completely immigrant free. As you can see from the census, that's very far from the truth; in fact only 83% of the population was born in Scotland for example.

     

    What I find nice is that immigrants to Scotland regularly adopt 'Scottish' as part of their identity, e.g. Pakistani-Scots, French Scots. Humza Yousaf and Christain Allard are of course prominent examples, being SNP MSPs (I note Allard was at the indy march with his 'Oui' sign which Mrs SS loved).

     

     

    The union almost wiped out Gaelic as a language (Scots to an extent as well, it's a wonder both have survived). I must admit, being Scots, I did find it odd that I was only allowed to learn 'English' at School, with my own language(s) not on offer.

     

    Good to see the Scottish Government making sure Gaelic preserved and encouraged, e.g.

     

    http://archive.is/ioUEi

     

    Scottish Government: £4m funding boost will increase Gaelic teaching in schools

     

    With 30% odd speaking Scots, it's much less in danger obviously.

    Edited by scottish skier
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    Posted
  • Location: New York City
  • Location: New York City

    I thought it interesting that nearly as many people spoke Polish as a first language as speak the Gaelic ......

     

    If we tell them their language is useless and backwards and instruct teachers to beat their children caught speaking it I'm sure we'll fix this "surprising" stat for the next census.

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  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    I see the Tories have made a huge error on the ECHR.

     

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/10342403/Britain-may-need-to-withdraw-from-European-Convention-on-Human-Rights-says-Cameron.html

     

    Britain may need to withdraw from European Convention on Human Rights, says Cameron

     

     

    How exactly could Westminster withdraw e.g. Scotland from the ECHR?

     

    That's just not possible; it's an independent legal jurisdiction with law devolved. The Scottish Parliament would need to approve such a move. Same for N. Ireland I understand.

     

    So either Dave is clueless about the laws / structure of the state he's supposed to be PM of, in which case he's not fit to govern, or he maybe he is just talking about England (+ Wales) when he says 'Britain'?

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  • Location: Maddiston , Falkirk, Scotland 390ft above sea level
  • Location: Maddiston , Falkirk, Scotland 390ft above sea level

    I see the Tories have made a huge error on the ECHR. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/10342403/Britain-may-need-to-withdraw-from-European-Convention-on-Human-Rights-says-Cameron.html Britain may need to withdraw from European Convention on Human Rights, says Cameron  How exactly could Westminster withdraw e.g. Scotland from the ECHR? That's just not possible; it's an independent legal jurisdiction with law devolved. The Scottish Parliament would need to approve such a move. Same for N. Ireland I understand. So either Dave is clueless about the laws / structure of the state he's supposed to be PM of, in which case he's not fit to govern, or he maybe he is just talking about England (+ Wales) when he says 'Britain'?

    I think he is just clueless.
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  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)
  • Weather Preferences: Wind driven falling snow
  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)

    If we tell them their language is useless and backwards and instruct teachers to beat their children caught speaking it I'm sure we'll fix this "surprising" stat for the next census.

     

    Aye, we were told not to say or write "aye" as it was slang, but I was sent to a private school. Much good it did me :lol:

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  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    Now that Derek Bateman has left BBC Scotland, it's interesting to hear about the goings on there and how Labour influence news and current affairs programming.

     

    http://drderekbateman.wordpress.com/2013/10/01/ive-just-stopped-laughing/

     

     
    This exchange left a sour taste for a journalist. Why should the head of news and current affairs at BBC Scotland be personally drafting explanations of editorial decisions to Johann Lamont’s office? Didn’t Sinclair bother listening or did he sleep through the first hour and instead of using the iplayer just email his pal at the BBC who would check for him? When did anybody at the BBC, let alone an executive on £100,000 of public money, become an agent of the Labour Party, offering a personalised service no other  licence-fee payer or political party gets?
     
    Sinclair [Gordon Brown lieutenant and Labour SPAD] contacts Boothman [of Labour Background], Boothman contacts presenter and Labour interference goes down the line to the programme production team who are made aware of the scrutiny. Aim: Keep applying the pressure.
    Edited by scottish skier
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  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)
  • Weather Preferences: Wind driven falling snow
  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)

     

    Now that Derek Bateman has left BBC Scotland, it's interesting to hear about the goings on there and how Labour influence news and current affairs programming.

     

    http://drderekbateman.wordpress.com/2013/10/01/ive-just-stopped-laughing/

     

     
    This exchange left a sour taste for a journalist. Why should the head of news and current affairs at BBC Scotland be personally drafting explanations of editorial decisions to Johann Lamont’s office? Didn’t Sinclair bother listening or did he sleep through the first hour and instead of using the iplayer just email his pal at the BBC who would check for him? When did anybody at the BBC, let alone an executive on £100,000 of public money, become an agent of the Labour Party, offering a personalised service no other  licence-fee payer or political party gets?
     
    Sinclair [Gordon Brown lieutenant and Labour SPAD] contacts Boothman [of Labour Background], Boothman contacts presenter and Labour interference goes down the line to the programme production team who are made aware of the scrutiny. Aim: Keep applying the pressure.

     

     

    So the paranoia about media bias isn't all in our heads? Very interesting SS :)

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  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    So the paranoia about media bias isn't all in our heads? Very interesting SS Posted Image

     

    He goes into much more detail here.

     

    http://drderekbateman.wordpress.com/2013/10/02/just-another-body-out-the-door/

     

     

    I think the point is that BBC Scotland is a misnomer. It is independent in structure – with its own management – but not independent in operation. It becomes rather obvious then that it is unlikely to reflect accurately the real Scotland when its allegiance lies elsewhere.

    Only a robustly independently-minded boss backed by an equally bloody-minded management team and editors with clear instruction to frame a news agenda and programme output to reflect the views of Scots irrespective of the London perspective, could come near to achieving this under the current arrangements. They would have to play a game of Bugger-it and put their jobs on the line when London objected. Likelihood? Zero.

    What happened to the last Scotland Controller – Alastair Hetherington – who demanded more financial autonomy? Sacked by London.

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  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet

    As interesting as these things are both yourself and many elections have indicated that the result of this referendum will be driven by wealth and perceived competence. If the Snp can convince people that an independent Scotland will be more prosperous and better managed then Scotland will leave. For this reason its much more important to answer the question of Europe, the currency ect.. And how,much wealthier Scotland can be than whether the Bbc is really a unionist mouthpeice.

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  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    As interesting as these things are both yourself and many elections have indicated that the result of this referendum will be driven by wealth and perceived competence. If the Snp can convince people that an independent Scotland will be more prosperous and better managed then Scotland will leave. For this reason its much more important to answer the question of Europe, the currency ect.. And how,much wealthier Scotland can be than whether the Bbc is really a unionist mouthpeice.

     

    The UK government could find out Scotland (and it's own) position in the EU post Scottish independence in an instant; it just needs to ask. I speculate it already has and both the Scottish and UK governments know the answer.

     

    Likewise, the UK government could state whether it agrees to the prospect of a currency union, at least initially. Again, this most likely already has been agreed.

     

    Certainly, neither the UK nor the EU governments have ever clearly and explicitly said Scotland would not be in the EU immediately post independence subject to negotiations of specific terms. Neither has the UK government ever stated that it was against a currency union.

     

    If the UK government wanted to strike a potentially killer blow to Scottish independence, it would be easy. Demonstrate that it had consulted with the EU and confirmed explicitly that Scotland would be chucked out (which is not going to happen, but let's pretend). It could also state a formal currency union was totally and utterly off the table.

     

    It has done neither. Make your own mind up about what's going to happen based on that...

     

    I could attack the UK government for not acting in the interests of its Scottish electorate by not answering both the EU and currency questions. I'm not doing that really, for now, as I expect both currency and EU status to be clearly stated in the white paper as backed up by the joint statement. This should happen at some point next month when negotiations should be largely complete. Certainly I can understand that nothing can be stated until those parties involved are all in agreement.

     

    As for the BBC... I think it important that Scots license payers have an idea how it's run. They need to make their mind up on a very important matter, including whether they believe their 'national' (ahem) broadcaster is giving fair an impartial coverage of the referendum and topics such as how much tax Scotland generates with an eye on independence. The BBC is one source of information; traditionally one of the most trusted. In recent years that has all been called into question.

     

    Derek Bateman's blog has only been online a few weeks and already 70,000 people (2.6% of the regularly voting electorate) have visited. Clearly, people are looking for the information he's providing on what's happening at BBC Scotland.

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  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl
  • Location: Near Lauder, SE Scotland, 175 m asl

    Quote

    As interesting as these things are both yourself and many elections have indicated that the result of this referendum will be driven by wealth and perceived competence. If the Snp can convince people that an independent Scotland will be more prosperous and better managed then Scotland will leave. For this reason its much more important to answer the question of Europe, the currency ect.. And how,much wealthier Scotland can be than whether the Bbc is really a unionist mouthpeice.

    Personally, wealth is not so much of an issue for me; an improvement in equality and democracy is what's the main driving force behind my stance. Improvements in equality could make the majority more wealthy without any rise in GDP. I don't esteem to be rich personally; I earn well enough and am not worried. A bit more security for when I retire would be good though.

    Anyway, on this subject, John Swinney, Finance Secretary, on a visit to my work (one of my workplaces, the other being a university spin-out company as discussed) took the opportunity to propose the SNP's oil fund plans should they be elected as the government of an independent Scotland.

    http://archive.is/Ik7SX

    Swinney: oil fund will allow independent Scotland to borrow, save and reduce debt without raising taxes

    An independent Scotland could borrow, save and reduce debt simultaneously without raising taxes or cutting public services if it puts some money into an oil fund, according to Finance Secretary John Swinney.

    An expert working group commissioned by ministers has said the Scottish Government does not have to wait until the budget is in surplus to establish an oil fund.

    Also, I know you consider yourself as a 'get up and go' type of guy, so you'll probably appreciate 'Business for Scotland'; which is a large and growing group of business people who support independence. Some good articles on their site as to why they support independence and are confident it will bring good economic benefits to Scotland just as devolution has (I recall being told it would be a disaster for business by the Tories ahead of the 1997 referendum, which they could not have possibly been more wrong on).

    http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/

    EDIT

    Interestingly, the UK government has recently decided to release tax receipts on a home nation basis.

    Here's tax take breakdown.

    Posted Image

    Note over the period in the table, Scotland started with 8.3% of the population, rising to 8.4%.

    So, the normal state is net 'surplus' which goes to the UK treasury per head of population.

    It all adds up to Scotland putting in 42.5 billion extra into the UK pot on a per capita basis over the period in question.

    And that's a conservative estimate as, for example, many of Scotland's international exports are 'taxed' (e.g. whisky export duty with this export accounting for 25% of UK food and drink exports) as they leave 'English' ports, hence the tax is not recorded as being gathered in Scotland. Then we have businesses HQ'd in England which sell stuff in Scotland so associated corporation/business taxes are missing. VAT also.

    Furthermore, Scots pay tax to support the UK civil service, much of which is based in England, notably London. The people who work for the civil service pay tax on salaries funded by Scots taxpayers and this tax is registered as coming from England. Obviously, if Scotland was independent, all that would be shifted here. They'd also be living here, spending their earnings, creating jobs and so adding more tax to the pot.

    One final point is that we're told the fact Scotland has oil is bad as it's a 'volatile' commodity. In addition to being an utterly ridiculous argument (Norway being desperate to hand control of its 'volatile' oil to Sweden), those tax receipts don't look very volatile, particularly considering the huge fluctuations in price from the peak of the boom to the bust afterwards.

    Scotland is not a land of milk and honey, but it more than pays it's way and people have nothing to fear about voting Yes economically.

    Edited by scottish skier
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  • Location: Highland Scotland
  • Location: Highland Scotland

    Labour's been banging on about 'Scotland on hold'. Even amongst the relatively few people I know who are inclined towards no at this time, several have recently commented that the independence debate seems to far from having had the negative impact predicted, appears to be energising Scotland, a more confident place with more get up and go. Far from having a damaging effect, I think it's actually having a positive impact on Scotland - and if people currently in the no camp are noticing this, then that's one scare story proven false. That in itself will have people thinking, what other scare stories are nonsense?

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