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Wings Over Scotland


Anger management

Posted on February 17, 2014 by

We’ve noted on several previous occasions the somewhat alarming way in which “Better Together” campaign chairman Alistair Darling can barely contain his fury at the sheer outrageous temerity of the independence movement in seeking to peacefully secure democratic self-determination for the people of Scotland.

We were all set for more of the same on BBC News this morning after Alex Salmond’s speech on currency, but were surprised to be met instead by a calm, softly-spoken and altogether more statesmanlike approach.

And in fairness, he kept it up for a good 15 seconds.

Darling was barely challenged by the presenter at all, but the rage was already bubbling to the surface before the first faint glimmers of dissent. “He’d say anything to get him out of a hole!” was the blustering reaction to the slightest suggestion that a currency union might be workable, with Darling (the Chancellor of the government that claimed in 2007 to have ended boom and bust) dragging up a 15-year-old Salmond quote about Sterling.

When it was suggested that polls were moving towards independence, Darling snorted that the one cited by the presenter had come out “five, six weeks ago”, although just 30 seconds later (at 3.55 in our recording) he’d revised that to “four weeks”, and swiftly moved on to pointing out that Jim Sillars was at odds with the SNP leadership on the subject, in much the same way that Jim Sillars has been at odds with the SNP leadership on just about every subject for just about every minute of the last decade.

From there on it was a brief selection of Darling’s greatest doom-and-gloom hits, rambling on about the Scottish Government “defaulting” on its (non-existent) debts and painting a terrifying picture of life with a new currency – an option that the Scottish Government has unequivocally ruled out and which Salmond had refused to even countenance in his speech.

We’re not sure if it’s really worth bothering to record interviews with Darling, because frankly most of the time you could just play in one of his previous ones without noticing the difference. But hey, we paid for the video-capture software so we might as well get some value out of it.

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  1. 02 04 14 16:07

    The embarrassment of Alistair Darling | ScottishRepublic.eu

406 to “Anger management”

  1. Luigi says:

    So the YES campaign is merely “Alex Salmond’s obsession”.

    With a million people (at least) voting for independence in September, that is one hell of a personal obsession.

    Mr Darling, someone is indeed “all over the place” on this issue, and it ain’t Alex Salmond!

  2. Gray says:

    Meanwhile, over on the BBC they have a comments section open on the Salmond speech http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-26220638

    The invective is flowing thick and fast but the phrase cherry-picking the best bits caught my eye.

    It’s not the first time I’ve seen this complaint, but in all honesty isn’t that exactly what you would want your new nation to do?

    We can adopt a Finnish style of education, take a Norwegian slant on managing oil revenues, we could even retain the Scottish NHS.

    Whatever way we choose to go it will undoubtedly be decided with the benefits to Scotland primarily as the objective.

    So as arguments go, isn’t that Scotland will be cherry-picking the best bits of the union one of the more ridiculous?

  3. DaveyM says:

    He needs to see a cardiologist before his heart lets him down. Calm down, Darling!

  4. Breastplate says:

    Ping

  5. Scotchwoman says:

    Presumably in dragging up a 15 year old quote from Salmond he forgot to drag up his own quote from last year where he suggested a currrency union is the best solution for all?

  6. chools says:

    ‘But hey, we paid for the video-capture software so we might as well get some value out of it’.

    I always enjoy re runs of the Darling saga, although never found myself that desperate to see the next episode

  7. Luigi says:

    I can’t wait to see this quivering wreck BT commander by Easter time (if he lasts that long).

  8. Grant says:

    I watched the First Ministers speech, it was clear, answered questions and excellent.

    Alistair Darling obviously did not watch it.

    BBC News at One, reporters sent the message, that the FM is running scared, losing the campaign.

    What kind of dictatorship has the UK become?

  9. Breastplate says:

    @Gray, I totally agree. Being independent is all about cherry picking, otherwise what’s the point?

  10. Kenny Ritchie says:

    Was expecting his head to explode. Will keep re-running until the desired result is met.

  11. Shiehallion! Shiehallion! says:

    It’s obvious from the state of him that a debate between Darling and Salmond would be too cruel, too painful, demeaning, stupid. Let’s hope that for the sake of whatever’s left of Captain Angry’s marbles, Commander Cameron continues to cower in London.

  12. heedtracker says:

    BetterTogetherBBC etc are such a strange bunch. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-26226593 Here’s the Salmond speech vote BBC online commentary coverage this morning. For extra BBC vote NO pep, they’ve mixed into their own text commentary dozens of vote NO tweets from viewers all tweeting about how Scots democracy is a terribly bad thing. So because its BBC, there’s not one YES vote tweet and weirdly as per, none of the live looking twitter account links actually work. Anger, corrupt bias and desperation really kicking now.

  13. Smith says:

    And he spoke, and spoke, and spoke, with probably no more than 20 seconds of questioning time.

    And just before Darling or after (I was too raging to remember), there was a presenter outside WM spouting total untruths, YET AGAIN about the EU.

    Do these guys never even stop to think what they are saying? “Scotland will never be allowed into the EU”. Oh, but Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, Malta, Cyprus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, etc, etc are in.

  14. Clancheif says:

    He cant hold it together because you cant defend the indefensible and he cracks every time trying to do so
    He will flip and flop from one answer to another (which has been well documented on here and other sites)
    He’s just a no mark, a yesterdays man trying to hold on with grim death to his westminster job and the gravy train he’s currently on and can see it slipping away from him

  15. Bill Walters says:

    One thing that is pretty clear from Salmond’s speech is that there will be no retreating from the currency union. He’s pretty much outlined exactly why Scotland having a different currency to the rest of the UK is in nobody’s interests. It’s particularly not in our interest as far more of our exports as a percentage go to the rest of the UK (65% of our total exports go to the UK in comparison to 16% of UK exports that go to Scotland, using the Scottish Government estimates).

    For what it’s worth, I think he’s right economically to say a currency union is better than an independent currency. I’m not convinced that in terms of winning the referendum it’s the best move, though.

  16. Indy_Scot says:

    Surely he will have to stop to breathe at some point.

  17. hetty says:

    This man is a disgrace to Scotland. He obviously thinks that he has some clout though, does anyone believe a word he says? His anger says it all really, and his defensive stance is very unprofessional. People tend to stop listening when someone is just shouting at them, and their words mean nothing.

  18. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Why don’t you slip into something comfortable and just re-laaaaax Darling?

    Listen to this, and no skipping!

  19. CefnogwrPlaidCymru says:

    It’s a real shame the SNP have allowed themselves to be drawn in by the tactics of artificially mixing the indy ref’n with the first Scottish general election post-indy. Salmond should be talking about *transitional arrangements* not long term solutions. It’s obvious that retaining sterling (and a reciprocal deal on EU movements) are the _only_ options on September 19th. Everything beyond that is a matter for the Scottish parties to campaign on for your next Parliament – there are at least 4 viable currency options, let the parties campaign on which one they want. If the winner picks currency union with E,W&NI and that turns out to be impossible then that party looks like idiots and you vote for another lot.

  20. Jim T says:

    Just visited his constituency details at http://www.parliament.uk/biographies/commons/mr-alistair-darling/596 and they have previous election results :

    General Election 2010 General Election – Edinburgh South West
    Name Party Votes Share Change
    Darling, Alistair Lab 19473 42.83% 3.0%
    Rust, Jason Con 11026 24.25% 1.0%
    McKay, Timothy LD 8194 18.02% -3.0%
    Stewart, Kaukab SNP 5530 12.16% 1.6%
    Cooney, Clare Green 872 1.92% -1.5%
    Fox, Colin SSP 319 0.70% -0.6%
    Bellamy, Caroline C Leagu 48 0.11%
    Majority 8447 18.58%
    Turnout 45462 68.51%
    Electorate 66361
    Result Lab Hold

    (Honest, I DID try to format it as a table, but failed miserably)

    Just wondering how his constituents are planning to vote in the IndyRef and if they will continue to back him as “old” labour come the next GE.

  21. Inbhir Anainn says:

    @Scotchwoman

    Entirely agree with you and something the BBC news presenter should have known and challenged him on there and then.

  22. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Is Darling on some sort of medication?

    Serious question as he doesn’t look as though he is normal.
    I had the same feeling about M Moore but more of calmer down sort treatment.

  23. Linda's Back says:

    Didn’t see BBC lunchtime coverage as no TVs at work but nothing surprises me about the BBC or our Unionist MEPs.

    Check out latest offerings from

    http://newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-opinion/8748-the-bbc-will-destroy-itself-in-pursuit-of-a-no-vote

    And

    http://derekbateman1.wordpress.com/2014/02/16/o-homem-e-um-asno/

  24. Desimond says:

    He really is starting to become like Darling in Blackadder … over promoted, easily ignored and ultimately sent over the top to his doom.

  25. john king says:

    Getting into dangerous territory there Alistair, because even the most difficult of thinking out there will know that you cant be responsable for a debt you didn’t run up,

    Not exactly the most productive of arguments to make while you backtrack on you own words that monetary union would be “logical”.

  26. uilleam_beag says:

    Alistair Darling was pure fizzing there, once he’d worked up his head of steam.

    I really can’t fathom how an apparently experienced politician can end up flapping like a severely badgered and baited witness under the most delicate questioning imaginable. Strikes me almost as though he’s actually responding the a string of hypothetical reposts running through his head that Alex Salmond would be slinging back at him if the two were ever to meet in a direct debate.

  27. Indy_Scot says:

    I can recall making a comment some time ago about how I believed Wendy Alexander could do herself some serious damage in a padded cell. I am now convinced there is room in there for one more.

  28. Luigi says:

    I may be off mark, but I sense that this is the moment that AS has been waiting for. The enemy has panicked and given away his position. They can (and will probably) be picked off at an opportune time, probably around May-June.

    The latest guff from the BBC and supporting MSM is that AS now has no choice but to come up with Plan B. No he does not! If opinion polls continue to ease towards YES, then why on earth should a Plan B be revealed at this time?

    What we have now is an interesting stand-off. Who will blink first? (well, it’s usually HMG, on recent form)! The question is who has carefully prepared for this event, and who is now panicking and all over the place! If AS expected the reaction and prepared this showdown, as I think he has, HMG may have fallen into a huge bear trap.

    Be afraid, Boy George, be very afraid!

  29. seoc says:

    Westminster’s ‘sacred’ pound will purchase approximately 12 very low quality frozen sausages.

  30. KenC says:

    Just got back from the ‘Scotland’s future’ public engagement event with Nicola Sturgeon in Dunblane.

    One of the questions raised there was about the bias of the BBC- got a big round of applause!

    Was very encouraged by the reaction of the audience- seemed very pro-indy to me. One woman at the back spouted ‘why are we even having this referendum, we’re not living in Damascus’- complete silence from the room. Otherwise, the questions and responses were all positive.

  31. Murray McCallum says:

    As a former Trotskyist, it’s ironic to see Alistair Darling turn into the kind of state bureaucrat identified by the man who initially inspired him:

    “The Soviet bureaucracy is like all ruling classes in that it is ready to shut its eyes to the crudest mistakes of its leaders in the sphere of general politics, provided in return they show an unconditional fidelity in the defense of its privileges.
    Revolution Betrayed (1936)

    While I do not think we should be surprised about the British state defending its existence and using all the tools at its disposal, e.g. the BBC, it is quite staggering to hear the lengths that individual “tools” like A.Darling will go to obfuscate the notion of Scotland being a country running its own affairs.

  32. Illy says:

    “England would have to underwrite Scotland’s debts”

    What debts? Holyrood doesn’t have any borrowing powers, and Westminster is responsible for the UK’s debts.

  33. rgweir. says:

    Norman smith BBC political editor outside Westminster after speech,He was blatantly ignoring the speech and trying to inifer that the debate had moved on to As and whether the public can trust him.Smith had his piece to camera written before As spoke.

  34. Oh, dear. I had a vague hope that Alistair Darling, as someone who isn’t stupid, could, eventually, have an epiphany and change his mind. I think, instead, he’s quantum leapt the mind change and gone insane.

  35. Cindie says:

    He’s such a dreadful man. I can’t watch or even listen to him anymore without throwing something at the screen/radio

  36. Shiehallion! Shiehallion! says:

    Darling needs a holiday. Maybe what made him so mad at Visit Scotland.

  37. muttley79 says:

    It is becoming the standard Darling interview.

  38. kininvie says:

    sprouts

  39. Shiehallion! Shiehallion! says:

    He was too long tanning, and come out suborned.

  40. ANDY NIMMO says:

    Celebrity 2014 – The worship of the Talentless by the Mindless’
    Sums up the Relationship between the BBC and Worstminster

  41. MochaChoca says:

    hmmmm?

  42. James123 says:

    Mr Angry allowed to ramble on and on without interruption whereas Yes campaign representatives are barely allowed to finish a sentence. Even the interviewer though seemed taken aback by the negativity and venom spitting out his mouth.

  43. Dan Huil says:

    I was going say how I’m beginning to worry about Mr Darling’s state of mind… Nah. I’m not really.

  44. James says:

    As Bugs Bunny would say “Nyay, what a muroon”

  45. dmw42 says:

    I’m writing this slowly as I know GCHQ can’t read very fast.

  46. Shiehallion! Shiehallion! says:

    Better Together. It’s hard not to laugh.

  47. heedtracker says:

    Terrify undecided, job done. Didnt old Flipper say currency union was best option anyway? He’s seems to be popular with Labour in England or at least online CiFers seem to rate him as sidekick for Balls. Very forgiving of future PM Miliband but the man who lost the last of the British empire is probably not going to be very popular in Westminster. So no wonder one of Labour’s greatest financial whizzes/expenses claimant is annoyed.

  48. Roll_On_2014 says:

    Neeps

  49. Neil MacGillivray says:

    An article in today’s Guardian spells out the position rahter well although the MSM will not alter their stance. I have directed also a series of questions to the EU office in Edinburgh concerning Mr Barroso:
    1)Are his views those of the European Commission and are they backed by legal advice?
    2) Did the invitation to appear on television on the Andrew Marr Show on 16 February 2014 come from the UK government, from the BBC or was it a request by the EU for Mr Barroso to be interviewed? If the latter why was this request made? Who made it?
    3) Please confirm that it is the Commission’s decided opinion based on legal principle that Kosovo and Scotland are identical cases in their desire for membership, in the case of the former for admission and the latter to remain a member. That in itself suggests a difference but one seemingly not apparent to Mr Barroso.

  50. G H Graham says:

    Flipper Darling is crap at geography as well as economics.

    At about 45 seconds in, he says, “… if Scotland decides to separate from the rest of the UK and there is a border where there is none today…”.

    I’ve driven south on the M74 loads of times and I’d swear on my pet baboon’s bald arse, that there is a sign that says Welcome to England.

    But if Darling is correct, that there is no border now, perhaps he could inform the good folks in Carlisle that they’ve been missing out on free prescriptions, free tertiary education & free bus passes to Aberdeen for years.

    Of course, it’s hard to deliver a statesman-like argument when your anger causes your eyebrows to go up and down as often as a prostitute’s knickers.

  51. scottish_skier says:

    To paraphrase a colleague…

    “When the eyebrows turn white, you’ll know Darling’s finally lost it”.

  52. Peter Macbeastie says:

    It really does stretch belief that this man was once the Chancellor. He’s coming across roughly as stable as a balloon in a thunderstorm.

    Perhaps he thought this job would be an easy one. Perhaps the reward he’s going to get for taking it on was too tempting to ignore. But he’s clearly losing the plot, so I hope his sanity is worth the proverbial thirty bits of silver he’s getting for the work.

  53. Neil MacGillivray says:

    I failed to incluse the Guardian article link which is http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/feb/17/barroso-scotland-ludicrous-remarks.

    If anyone wishes to direct questions to the EU in Edinburgh I suggest that you make contact by email with caroline [dot] winchester [at] ec [dot] europa [dot] eu

  54. bunter says:

    @rgweir 3.14

    Smith has had his speeches to camera written by the British State this morning. Its quite clear now that the Scot Gov has the whole shebang ranged against them including of course good auld auntie, boak

  55. Rod Mac says:

    The more I see Darling and listen to anyone on the BBC the more I fill with disgust and loathing.
    How these people can live with their self delusion and dishonesty is beyond my comprehension.

  56. Andy-B says:

    Mr Darling was exactly the same on Sundays politics Scotland show, on the BBC, with his jugular vein bulging profusely from his collar whilst, preaching of the coming apocalypse if we decided to vote yes.

  57. Craig says:

    http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000246658

    Good clip from CNBC interviewing director Sam Bowman from Adam Smith Institute saying HBOS and RBS banks would need to move to London

    Interviewer – hold on but isn’t HBOS wholly owned by Lloyds which is an English bank.
    Interviewer – is RBS not already owned by the Government

    A bit of a stuttering response from Sam Bowman then having to admit he doesn’t know the answer what would happen because of this.

    http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000246658

  58. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    I’m afraid Flipper sounds like Alex Salmond is his OBSESSION.

    How can he keep playing the same record for seven more months?
    Stay tuned and I suppose we will find out.

    🙂

  59. Thomas William Dunlop says:

    He does a good impression of a panda with a sore head on acid

  60. Robin Ross says:

    We were told by the BBC commentator after Salmond’s speech that the issue was not Mr Osborne but the contributions by Carney and Barrosso. Considering that Mr Salmond had just spent a considerable amount of time dissecting the implications of Mr Osborne’s Edinburgh speech, it seemed that the BBC commentator had not been listening very carefully, or was pursuing his own line of thought.

    It was the BBC that produced Mr Barrosso in the wake of the Osborne speech, and it looks as if Aunty is shoving the twin track currency/EU bogeymen for all its worth. Mr Darling was certainly given an almost uninterrupted platform to castigate his opponents with no real reference to anything that AS produced in his speech. (Though it may be that AD’s skill as a speed reader is matched by his ability to respond to speeches without actually having to listen to them.)

    The interview with Mr Darling was classic stuff. He told his interviewer not to build an argument based on one poll, and then did just that. He then asked me to consider the pound (which has lost 20% of its value since 2008). Well I had just had to consider my pound as I received my ISA statement this morning which indicated that it had made only half the interest it achieved last year. The more often he is given a chance to spout, the more opportunities there are for people to compare the rhetoric with their own reality.

    Looking at the comments on newspaper articles there is increasingly shrill nit-picking about the minutiae of the currency and EU issues and I wonder if this is not actually a happy distraction in the eyes of the unionists as it takes away the focus from the core of the debate which is about self-determination. Once self-determination is gained, the stage is set for negotiating the nuts and bolts of independence. In that context, the economy is not the most important thing, the right to govern oneself is the most important issue at this stage.

  61. turnbull drier says:

    wow.. he doesn’t let up does he…

    Just one thing the comment about the banking sector being 12 times Scotland’s GDP. Is this the “head office address not where the transactions take place” argument again?

  62. SquareHaggis says:

    Watched mr D yakking away at lunchtime, quite extraordinary.

    Counted 104 blinks inabout 30 seconds!

    Just wondering if it’s deliberate as during the whole diatribe I was so busy counting I didnt actually register anything he said.

    JUST WEIRD…

  63. kininvie says:

    I see that as EU citizens we have the right to contact and receive a reply from any EU Institution:

    http://ec.europa.eu/justice/citizen/

    It would be a shame not to use it:

    This blog by Michael Keating might be a starting point for coming up with a few questions – especially point 9

    http://www.futureukandscotland.ac.uk/blog/scottish-independence-and-eu

  64. Greannach says:

    Rubbish expressed in a splendid accent is still rubbish. I had a neighbour who used to get frothed up like Flipper, but he went to the doctor and got tablets.

  65. Dick Gaughan says:

    I fear that our Alistair is finally losing it. Seriously.

    I’ve long suspected he only got the “save the union” job in the first place as he is one of the few ex-public schoolboys Cameron could find in NorthBrit Labour and therefore “almost one of us, what?”

    As mentioned above, he should rethink his drama coach’s advice and realise that using the Blackadder Captain Darling is a really, really dumb move.

  66. Andy-B says:

    O/T Rev.

    Here’s David Clegg banging on about Alex Salmond asking voters to take a leap of faith, with regards to currency, the usual guff from Clegg. In the paper version of Daily (drivel) Record, Clegg pokes fun at Scots by, intimating that an independent Scotland would use ginger bottles or monopoly money or bottle tops as a currency, anything but the pound.

    Of course Clegg states he found these fanciful currencies on the social media, but does that make it a good idea to put them in a national newspaper, I think not, no its another scare tactic from the most minor minion of journalism.

    http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/politics/david-clegg-alex-salmond-relying-3154987

  67. heedtracker says:

    For the balance, I tried again the vote NO twitter links in among the BBC online commentary http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-26226593 but nothing happens when you click on them in chrome and firefox gives that message below. So no link for vote no tweeting Jacqui Morris and Matthew Revett, Dr Matthew Ashton, Steve P and so on. BBC really must think people are complete and utter morons.

    The address wasn’t understood

    Firefox doesn’t know how to open this address, because the protocol (tweets) isn’t associated with any program.

    You might need to install other software to open this address.

  68. Inbhir Anainn says:

    Can anyone kindly provided a link to the full speech given by the First Minister Alex Salmond to Business for Scotland in Aberdeen.

  69. Clootie says:

    In a debate you would consider the case won when your opponent went in to this level of meltdown.

    I’m convinced that they know the polls are not going their way and that it’s going to show up quite soon.

    Last year we had a vote on fishing with Malta and one other of the smaller nations (I can’t remember) sitting either side of the UK chair.

    Malta with a population far less than Glasgow has more say in our North Sea fishing grounds than we do?

    A wikipedia search of countries by population is very interesting (many with far less resources)

    How does New Zealand survive? Can Denmark get through the decade.

    How could anyone expect the following to go it alone
    Finland / Norway / Ireland / Croatia / Bosnia and Herzegovina / Uruguay.

    It would be stupid to suggest Malta or Montenegro could survive alone.

  70. beachthistle says:

    Was wondering why Flipper’s nervous ticcing, stammering and blinking was giving me sense of deja vu…

  71. I do get why the BBC is sucking up to the Tories and their pawns so much. They know that if they don’t do this, the TV license goes and Murdoch gets to have a free for all on them.

    After their sycophantic behavior during this campaign though, I do honestly hope they get whats coming to them. No point having them if they won’t do their god damn jobs properly

  72. Linda's Back says:

    Reporter Norman Smith on BBC London 24 hours news giving the British Establishment view. Cameron sticking his oar in again but offer to debate or negotiate.

  73. starlaw says:

    Inside Whitehall exists a department known as the Ministry of Disinformation, this department uses MSM and particularly the BBC to spread its propaganda. It was widely used during WW2 and again during the Falkland war to spread misinformation causing confusion among enemy forces. I feel this department is hard at work in the referendum campaign.

  74. Drew says:

    Watched him ranting on the “News 24” channel. Imagine my surprise when, not an hour later, they show Darling in a cafe or pub surrounded by ordinary punters giving a more unrattled performance.

  75. Proud Cybernat says:

    The Scottish Government did the right thing today in sticking to their preferred Plan A of a currency union with the rest of the rUK upon Scottish Independence. Of course, this isn’t the Scottish Government’s only option–there are other models and each of these have been presented in the SG’s White Paper, ‘Scotland’s Future’. Whatever happens after a YES result, Scotland will continue to have the pound, perhaps not in a formal currency union with the rUK if Westminster continues to remain pig-headed after the result, but it will most assuredly have the pound nevertheless. We will have our currency. Make no mistake about it.

    Osborne gave a less than emphatic ‘no’ to a formal currency union whilst Salmond says ‘yes’ to a formal currency union. These are the respective positions–at least for the moment. The REAL negotiations over the CU option will begin only after a YES result in the referendum and not before. I fully expect that after a YES result, Westminster will be ‘persuaded’ against its diktat rejection of the proposal (before negotiations have even begun) and will instead come to accept the rational, logical and common sense view of the SG. But as a campaign tactic, Westminster–for the moment–have to make the currency union option seem as if it is off the table.

    The fact is the formal currency union option will only truly be off the table if it cannot be negotiated in the 18 months after a YES result. And that is the time when the SG will have to consider implementing one of the other options it presents in the White Paper–and not a moment before.

    Salmond is very clever here and has totally ‘played’ Westminster. He probably anticipated the knee-jerk reaction from Westminster of saying NO to a formal currency union and how being told by Osballs that we can’t use our own currency would be received by many Scots. Salmond well knows that the more Westminster say to us “No you can’t”, the more Scotland will tell WM, “Yes we can.” If Westminster had just turned round and said of the SG’s common sense proposal, “we’ll think about it” or said “we’re not prepared to pre-negotiate it” then that, probably more than anything, would have taken the wind right out of Salmond’s sails, his ploy of getting WM to rebuff Scottish wishes would have floundered.

    But alas, Westminster simply cannot help itself–the colonial, imperialist mentality simply has to assert itself and try and place Scotland back in its box. That was (and remains) a grave miscalculation by Westminster and that is why I suspect they will lose this debate and, quite probably, the referendum. They just don’t ‘get’ us.

  76. Andy-B says:

    The audacity of Downing Street, when they said, “Alex Salmond is very prompt, when it comes to penning letters,but a little bit less so when it comes to offering answers.

    Downing street hasn’t answered any questions about negotiations prior or post independence, on anything except currency, and even there they’ve made a pigs foot of it.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/10643808/Alex-Salmond-George-Osborne-will-back-down-over-the-pound-if-Scots-vote-yes.html

  77. NorthBrit says:

    How many times did he blink there?

  78. heedtracker says:

    Without going completely one issue, the only twitter link that works from the BBC online commentary is the first one, a James Bloodworth which is very odd or just the usual https://twitter.com/J_Bloodworth/status/435368744479510528

    And Mr Bloodworth links on to his very hard vote no thing for Left Foot Forward, whatever that is. http://www.leftfootforward.org/2014/02/alex-salmond-needs-to-woo-not-bully-the-rest-of-the-uk/

    Spooky vote NO Scotland ghosts in the BBC machine.

  79. Dick Gaughan says:

    starlaw says:
    Inside Whitehall exists a department known as the Ministry of Disinformation

    Isn’t that a subdivision of the “Ministry of Silly Walks”?

  80. Brian Powell says:

    There needs to be anger management generally amongst anti-Independence folks.

    The Guardian comments pages either has suddenly been invaded by Telegraph readers or the liberals aren’t so liberal as I thought, or perhaps they are concerned and liberal if it involves starving Africa or the Middle East. Anything that shakes the cosy picture of Britain, scares them into a state of mindless ignorance.

    There were talk of arresting the Scottish Government, and use of troops for the attack on the Pound, that is, using the Pound.

    Spittle aplenty. It reminded me of the film 28 Days, with the fury virus rampant.

    A bit like Darling there were some that started rationally with if the Scots want to go, then came the list that became angrier and angrier. No rational information from Yes commentators were acceptable or were ignored i.e. no discussion on the point.

    There was an interview on Russian TV discussing the down playing of the Sochi Olympics, by US News, suggesting terrorist attacks and poor preparation.

    The commentator(American) said the journalists have a story in their heads and look to find anything that fits the narrative. This partly fits here, the Scottish BBC journalist who tore up the SNP manifesto, saying it was nonsense, SNP had no chance, next day they won the elections to form the Scottish Government.

    Now it has gone far beyond that excuse. The BBC corrupts democracy.

  81. Arabs for Independence says:

    O/T BBC telling a story that Sir Sean Connery being questioned by Spanish police – the story has virtually bugger all to do with Mr Connery.

    More a local Marbella story so we can guess why BBC Radio Scotland spent 5 minutes telling us it happened 20 years ago and Mr Connery is accused of nothing.

    Don’t mess with 007

  82. scottish_skier says:

    Rustic Camembert

  83. heedtracker says:

    Oops again! The only vote NO BBC tweeter that actually goes anywhere this morn is James Bloodworth but he’s tweet quoting a vote No report on Salmond’s speech this morn in Left Foot Forward by one Mr Ed Jacobs. So right click google Ed Jacobs and up pops Ed Jacobs who is Ed Jacobs, the Vote NO Guardian Northerner’s political commentor, http://www.theguardian.com/uk/the-northerner/2013/mar/12/budget-george-osborne-northern-england

    This is fun and maybe shows how BBC’s political bias/corruption connects up throughout the day.

  84. Alba4Eva says:

    .

  85. Stuart Graham says:

    If you’ve had enough of the BBC/HMGov propoganda, starve the beast. Cancel your TV License and tell them why.

    http://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one/topics/how-to-tell-us-you-dont-watch-tv-top12/

    “The law states that you need to be covered by a TV Licence if you watch or record television programmes, on any device, as they’re being shown on TV. This includes TVs, computers, mobile phones, games consoles, digital boxes and Blu-ray/DVD/VHS recorders.

    You don’t need a licence if you don’t use any of these devices to watch or record television programmes as they’re being shown on TV – for example, if you use your TV only to watch DVDs or play video games, or you only watch ‘catch up’ services like BBC iPlayer or 4oD.”

    More time to read WoS and you’ll save £145 to boot.

  86. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    The BT shark has definitely been jumped.

    Flipper’s moments of exasperation with the (fairly gentle) interviewer are very telling.

    It’s not hard to tell that it’s the BT wheels that are coming off.

    It made me think back to when I was listening to Ken MacDonald on BBC Radio Scotland on Sunday morning reviewing the papers with Sergio Casci and Katie Grant.

    I was getting a bit cheesed-off with the way Katie was being given maximum airtime for her not-very-subtle BT cheerleading, but then I realised that maybe something else was going on.

    Katie kept grabbing and hogging everything that was being discussed, and continually banged the BT drum. Poor Sergio hardly got a word in.

    Katie was in a mode where, if somebody had texted in to say they had just seen a flying saucer, Katie would have jumped in and said that it was probably one of these wonderful new UK stealth drones, and that we were all really better together as Great Britain to have the clout to … blah .. blah ..

    By the end I had a funny feeling that Ken was tolerating the way Katie was behaving, in a kind of ok-you-can-have-enough-rope-to-hang-yourself way.

    She sounded to me as if she had gotten infected by a variant of the panicky/twitchy Flipper disease.

    When Sergio got to occasionally say something (always measured and sensible), the contrast said it all …

  87. Andy-B says:

    Barroso’s remarks about Scotland not joining the EU are as ludicrous, as his record in office. Says John Palmer.

    Apparently Barroso’s ten year tenure, as EU executive, has been lamentable at best.

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/feb/17/barroso-scotland-ludicrous-remarks

  88. joe kane says:

    Loved every rage filled second of that.
    It would be ace if Kirsty Wark, in anti-Salmond mode, interviewed Flipper in anti-Salmond mode.

    Is there a name for the public display of such uncontrollable pavlovian display of emotion (such as “road rage”) which Alex Salmond provokes across the British establishment?

  89. SquareHaggis says:

    Colonel Blink on form today.

    104 in less than 30 seconds, must be a record!

    Mind you it certainly distracts me from the dialogue 😀

  90. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “It’s a real shame the SNP have allowed themselves to be drawn in by the tactics of artificially mixing the indy ref’n with the first Scottish general election post-indy.”

    In fairness, they’ve just about broken their backs trying NOT to do that. The White Paper makes explicitly clear that it only sets out the SNP’s position, and that other parties may win Scottish elections.

  91. Robert Louis says:

    Proud cybernat,

    I have to say, I concur with everything in your excellent comment above. What Westminster and their Labour and BBC apparatchiks have been trying to do, is force the Scottish Government and the YES campaign to pre-negotiate the terms of independence.

    The proposal for a currency union not only makes sense for iScotland and rUK, but it is also an important negotiating point. What George Osborne thinks of it just now, is neither here nor there.

    The YES campaign are absolutely right to stick to their current currency plan, because only an utter fool seriously believes that in the event of a YES vote George Osborne will say NO to a currency union thereby leading to immediate Sterling devaluation, a major downturn in sterling zone balance of payments, and increased business transaction costs for rUK businesses trading to Scotland.

    In addition, should George Osborne decide to commit economic suicide, and reject a currency union, in the event of a YES vote, then Scotland could literally walk away with a clean balance sheet. No default, as legally the debt will not belong to iScotland. (I actually quite like that idea).

    Frankly, In discussions I have had with people, the general view is they really don’t care about the intricacies of currency union, all that matters is the pound – and as we all know London cannot prevent iScotland or indeed ANY country using pound sterling.

    I’m now so bored with going round in circles with this utter bollocks from Westminster about currency, that I really wish they would move on to a different project fear scare story, just to keep it remotely interesting.

    Meanwhile, in BBC land, their political correspondent, Norman Smith seems to have spent the entire day, standing in Westminster, giving the BBC pro-british viewpoint on all of this.

  92. Vronsky says:

    (Warning)
    Post in very bad taste
    (/warning)

    My wife and I (pensioners) have been faithful supporters of Margo MacDonald’s Assisted Suicide bill. We go to all the meetings. But concerning the unfortunate lassie’s husband we find ourselves more and more in support of Assisted Murder. What a vainglorious little twat Jim Sillars is. Poor Margo.

  93. Gillie says:

    Darling a numerically challenged person. Not good with figures nor dates.

  94. Robert Louis says:

    Vronsky,

    You are right. It is in very, very poor taste, FFS!

  95. Cindie says:

    just checking for comments…

  96. John Walsh says:

    I thought he was going to explode when confronted with the 5% increase in YES vote. The interviewer then backed down to the agreed script. And Darling looked like Maxheadroom. Stuck on the “wheels come off speach”.

  97. Vincent McDee says:

    Strange BBC reporting of situations analysis. On the one hand this could be considered fairly balanced:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-26225894

    Scottish independence: The currency debate, claim by claimBy Marianne Taylor

    BBC Scotland news

    On the other hand this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-25317277

    Scottish independence referendum: Experts examine the claimsBy Andrew Black & Martin Currie

    BBC Scotland

    While the intention is good: Throughout the coming months, the BBC news website will be picking out statements from both sides of the debate and asking a panel of experts to analysis the claims.

    The result shows every expert opposing the Yes stance.

    Weirdly bi-polar

  98. SquareHaggis says:

    Test, sorry

  99. Andy-B says:

    Alex Salmond coining the phrase “The George Tax” which relates to cross border charges, English businesses would incur, without the currency union, amounting to £500 million pounds per year. Westminster spokesman added “We will not pre-negotiate, anything.”

    http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/460223/Refusing-deal-over-pound-would-cost-England-hundreds-of-millions-Alex-Salmond-warns

  100. Morag says:

    Baron’s Court

  101. Craig says:

    As much as I feel Darling has lost the plot, what scares me more is the complete partiality of almost all the recognised media. The so called big guns of Scottish reporting have shown themselves to be incapable or incompetent in asking any searching questions of the Better Together Campaigners. I always wondered how the Nazis could rise so easily, but when you have journalists more interested in their jobs than the potential devastation of their country you can see how easy it was.

    They continually ask why is BT not telling us more on what will happen after a NO vote, when they know they can’t answer that question, because after a NO vote all decisions will be taken by Westminster and Holyrood will become nothing but an inconsequential talking shop that will eventually be put out to pasture.

    Now we have only one choice now, vote YES or lose everything

  102. SquareHaggis says:

    104 blinks per 30 seconds, is this a record?

    If you count the blinks when he’s speaking you can easily get by without hearing any of it. Quite astonishing. is he some kind of anti-interviewee?

  103. Greannach says:

    Joe – would that be Salmonella Poisoning?

  104. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    Kelvingrove

  105. muttley79 says:

    In regards to Darling he really does not want to give this up:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5B74WPxZGfw

    😀 😀

  106. muttley79 says:

    How do you get a Youtube clip directly on to WoS?

  107. Another Union Dividend says:

    Blood boiling at BBC News 24 Its so British establishment with no analysis or questioning of Darling’s claims but negative slants on Alex Salmond’s speech put to john Curtss that well known Nobel Prize winner for economics.

    Why didn’t they ask SirJames Mirrlees instead?

  108. Vincent McDee says:

    Paul Kavanagh splendid explanation of the why Barroso behaves the way he does:

    http://weegingerdug.wordpress.com/

    “Barroso is a member of the European Popular Party He belongs to the same centre-right cabal as the Spanish Partido Popular, and the UK Tories (before they went off in a collective huff and left the European Popular Party to join up in the EU parliament with far-right Latvian holocaust deniers). The Spanish PP has spent considerable time and effort persuading fellow members of the European Popular Party to adopt its line that states which become independent from existing EU members must leave the EU and reapply for membership. Reliant upon the support of European Popular Party members of the EU Parliament, Barroso wasn’t going to upset Partido Popular’s applecart.

  109. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @joe kane
    Is there a name for the public display of such uncontrollable pavlovian display of emotion (such as “road rage”)

    “IndyRefRage”

  110. Appleby says:

    Just had leaflets through the door from Bitter Together. It’s the same old lies going back to the shipyards, subs, etc. and also the whole goodbye pound thing that they can’t guarrantee at all and all of it is insubstantial tripe with no proof. They seem to hope to win by simply blasting out baseless fear repeatedly and hoping it sticks. It is a paper thin argument though and we just have to hope people have the sense to test it and find out it isn’t a brick wall after all.

  111. Onwards says:

    The unionist strategy seems to be:

    ‘Let’s just pretend that a sensible currency deal will be vetoed in the hope that enough suckers believe it’

    And many will with the media all playing along.

    I feel there is a trap being set here.

    All this push for a Plan B – the most obvious one to use a Scottish pound pegged to sterling.

    Then they likely have RBS lined up to announce their HQ move to London the week before the referendum.

    It’s just amazing to see all these Scottish Labour MP’s acting against their own countries interest.

  112. Andy-B says:

    Alex Massie sending up Osborne and Salmond, in the Osborne-Salmond tapes.

    http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/coffeehouse/2014/02/revealed-the-salmond-osborne-tapes/

  113. Patrick Roden says:

    Colonel Blink said that a poll was 5 or 6 weeks back, but when the interviewer mentioned that a ‘Poll just a couple of weeks ago, showed yes up 5%’ Blink said, No that’s the poll I was talking about, it wasn’t a couple of weeks ago, it was 4 weeks ago!

    Eh? Blatant lying by Better Together on national TV and they are getting away with it, (but not in peoples homes)

    He also said it’s the trends that are important and there’s hardly been any movement in the polls!

    Another blatant Lie by Blink.

    You know that bloke Alistair Darling ?

    He’s a blinking liar, he is 🙂

  114. msean says:

    @Gray Wouldn’t say cherry picking,more like dropping the rabid right wing bits we didn’t vote for or want.

  115. willie fae Irvine says:

    Darling knows his ermine robes are on a shoogly nail.

  116. muttley79 says:

    @Beachthistle

    I see that you have put up a Youtube clip direct onto WoS. How do you do it?

  117. Jamie Arriere says:

    Parody becomes reality

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dVTx_02rCW4

    “You are the most graceless dim-witted bumpkin”

  118. Murray McCallum says:

    Flipper Darling has gills behind his ears giving him an unfair ranting advantage. He can rant and breath at the same time.

  119. joe kane says:

    As someone has already brought up the topic of clumsy English-based comedy interventions in the referendum debate, here is the News Thump Facebook in its comments thread tying itself up in knots trying to justify its uninformed unionist propaganda. See the nested threads –
    Alex Salmond claims he has every right to use gym he’s no longer member of
    https://www.facebook.com/NewsThump/posts/10151857154082371?stream_ref=5

  120. Bill Walters says:

    “The fact is the formal currency union option will only truly be off the table if it cannot be negotiated in the 18 months after a YES result. And that is the time when the SG will have to consider implementing one of the other options it presents in the White Paper–and not a moment before.”

    I don’t really go along with that, to be honest. There’s nothing preventing us from saying that an independent currency is a second option should the currency union not transpire. If anything that would make Scotland’s negotiating position stronger because we’d have an alternative – and one which has been indirectly ratified by the electorate in a referendum.

    A lot of people thought that after Osborne’s speech the SNP would abandon the currency union altogether – RevStu called it an “open goal”. It’s pretty clear that isn’t going to happen now, so the argument really hinges on convincing the electorate that politically the rest of the UK will go for it – knuckle dragging UKIP cretins and all.

  121. muttley79 says:

    Does anyone have the contact details for South Edinburgh Yes?

  122. Tamson says:

    @Joe kane:

    There is, it’s called the 2-minute hate.

  123. What worries me about this chap is
    1} he-might stand for Holyrood
    2}he might get to be labour first minister
    TAKE TO THE BOATS NOW!!!!!

  124. X_Sticks says:

    In full: Alex Salmond’s speech on currency union and independence:

    http://news.stv.tv/politics/264391-in-full-alex-salmonds-speech-on-currency-union-and-independence/

    At lease STV is giving us a chance to see the whole of Alex’s speech without Darling or BBC ‘experts’ polluting the message.

  125. patronsaintofcats says:

    Tatties

  126. Appleby says:

    I think after independence that people will look back on the BBC as being as barmy as Pravda and other similarly blinkered propaganda outlets.

  127. Inbhir Anainn says:

    @Jean

    Many thanks for providing the link to the First Minister’s speech.

  128. joe kane says:

    Classic Private Eye front cover 5-18 Sept, 2008 –
    http://www.private-eye.co.uk/covers.php?showme=1218

  129. FreddieThreepwood says:

    @Muttley – Guy called Neil Hay can be contacted on yesedinsouth [at] gmail [dot] com

    You’re not in my patch by any chance, are you?

  130. Bill McLean says:

    Has Darling flipped again? Looks like!

  131. Juteman says:

    There is a point when ‘politicking’ crosses the line. The likes of Darling have crossed that line. They are telling out and out lies. They are evil, in the same way that conmen fiddle old folk for non-existent roof repairs. They are scum.

  132. rab_the_doubter says:

    Problem solved, whilst reading this I just got a phone call informing me that I can legally write off 70% of debt. I’ll forward the info pack to Osbore, Eyebrow boy and co.

  133. Appleby says:

    The thing about the currency that ranting mad men and scaremongers like Darling fail to mention is that the solution adopted for immediate post-independence is not necessarily the long term option over the years or generations either. Australia used the pound and went to the dollar (not the only example of this sort of thing in history or the world). That entire continent failed to explode into a wasteland of dead pandas under a Doctor Who boycott from Better Together & co., despite the wild-eyed predictions of Project Fear.

    A free and independent Scotland can decide for ourselves what is best for us when we are good and ready for it and we will easily adapt over time. That is the benefit, ability and freedom that independence will bestow over the hands-tied status of Scotland now. The soverign people of Scotland can tailor everything perfectly to our needs, instead of being given ill-fitting hand-me-down cast-offs from our Westminster overlords.

  134. Kenny Campbell says:

    Must say all these folks saying Salmond has played Westminster or played a blinder seem a little bit premature and at a stretch its very hopeful. Timing wise the British have played a good game in the last week with Currency and EU 1-2 IMO.

    Hitting pretty well at two previously reasonably unassailable pillars of the SNP policy.

    We’ll need to see the impact on the Polls, if we actually get to see it.

    The only chink of light I can see is that they have played their hand very early. I cannot understand why they’d do this no other than their own data is showing collapse of the NO vote.

    If they’d played this in August I could really see the impact, perhaps their forecast are saying it would be too late. Time will tell.

  135. Marcia says:

    muttley 79

    Just post the full youtube link.

  136. sneddon says:

    Andy B- for an update on what Marcus posted you can see the chat between him and our very own Rev on Wings twitter account. All very amicible and Marcus gets some accurate info to read instead of that rubbish from the MSM. Happy people all round. Hopefully Marcus can get some laughs out of the NO campaign content rather than the WTF moments it gives me.

  137. turnbull drier says:

    Can anyone answer this?

    Just one thing the comment about the banking sector being 12 times Scotland’s GDP. Is this the “head office address not where the transactions take place” argument again?

  138. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @Appleby says:
    I think after independence that people will look back on the BBC as being as barmy as Pravda and other similarly blinkered propaganda outlets.

    With the way the BBC have handled the independence referendum issue, they have already tarnished their global brand.

    By this time next year post-graduate media and politics students at Universities in Europe (especially Germany) will be writing and attending classes and seminars on this topic.

  139. Linda's Back says:

    Turnbull drier

    “Instead Osborne had raised several false claims concerning the Scottish economy. The first concerned banking. Osborne said that the banking network made any currency union risky. Yet the HMRC’s own tax records demonstrate that only 7.3% of money raised from the banking levy came from Scotland. It is a misrepresentation to include City of London based financial operations – such as the RBS’ Global Markets Division – as part of an independent Scotland’s financial sector.”

    From Business for Scotland’s report on Alex Salmond’s speech

    http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/economic-business-facts-counter-george-osborne-fiction/

    As Business for Scotland have pointed out many times previously, it is economically absurd to ignore the international and multi-lateral nature of banking operations and bail-outs during the credit crisis.

  140. Spout says:

    Re Robin Ross
    “Looking at the comments on newspaper articles there is increasingly shrill nit-picking about the minutiae of the currency and EU issues and I wonder if this is not actually a happy distraction in the eyes of the unionists as it takes away the focus from the core of the debate which is about self-determination. Once self-determination is gained, the stage is set for negotiating the nuts and bolts of independence. In that context, the economy is not the most important thing, the right to govern oneself is the most important issue at this stage.”

    Great comment – I’ve been thinking this too.

    The No camp want to limit the parameters of the debate, the Media are facilitating this….

    We have to broaden the debate…

    Self-determination and Democracy

    – the key issues to communicate to folks.

  141. Les Wilson says:

    It is also the case that he seems convinced that Alex Salmond is causing the issue with a currency union?????
    I seem to remember it being caused by road runner (I just figured that one out LOL) Osborne was the one who came and started all this off.( along with Balls and the red Rodent, saying the same from a distance! )

    Alex Salmond wants to help with the UK’s debt, and very reasonable that is too, as we have no obligation to do so.
    We should just put up our hands, we tried to be nice, but were strangely rebuffed.

    So let us accept their decision, and use a currency board without ANY loss of sovereignty AND be much better off.
    I would be much happier to, put in more anti poverty programs than to pay Westminster’s wages, AND we will still use the pound!.Idiots.

  142. Robert Kerr says:

    I watched the clip with the sound off. Darling is very bitter indeed. Watch his lips curl!

    I no longer get upset with BBC or the Fourth Estate.

  143. Les Wilson says:

    Cameron has just said in a BBC interview that Alex Salmond wants a currency union ” but that it is under threat “.

    DOH, thought there was “NO CHANCE OF A CURRENCY UNION! Distancing ??

  144. SquareHaggis says:

    If Scotland can walk away debt free as a secceding state then couldn’t England do the same? If both parties secceeded then neither would be liable for any ex UK debt surely?

  145. Juteman says:

    broon sass

  146. kininvie says:

    marrowfat peas

  147. HandandShrimp says:

    I’d love to see Darling under real pressure from a hostile interviewer……on the other hand maybe I wouldn’t. It would be like an episode of Eastenders when everyone is really, really annoyed.

    I think the only positive for Better Together is that at least Darling isn’t Cameron, Osborne or Alexander.

    I’m glad that Ruthie has kicked into touch any prospect of a joint Devo Something approach. The choice is clear, Better Together’s sub UKIP save the £ or independence. Go on, go on, go on, you know you want to in your heart of hearts. Who could say No to Scotland?

  148. Juteman says:

    Look how far we have come. Independence has become normalised.
    It just seems like yesterday the MSM were discussing who should get the vote, now they are didcussing what will happen in an independent Scotland.
    It’s happening.

  149. Andy-B says:

    The New Statesman claiming Alex Salmond’s speech was an utter failure, and even if it does cost English businesses £500 million pounds or more, it worth it to stop Salmond getting the pound.

    http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2014/02/salmond-didnt-even-come-close-rebutting-osbornes-currency-threat

  150. kininvie says:

    Oh look, rapid backtracking by the EC on Barosso’s statement. Poor Danish spokesperson wheeled out to ‘explain’ the intervention.

    Too late, of course. No one in the MSM will care a jot. But worth reading (google translate does an OK job) to see just how far the toad is embarassing his own department.

    http://www.lavanguardia.com/politica/20140217/54401265152/ce-barroso-no-queria-interferir-proceso-democratico-marcha-escocia-catalunya.html#.UwJNHpRMwvg.twitter

  151. Helpmaboab says:

    Is Mornington Crescent really the best way to defeat DDos attacks? If so, I’m playing the Gordon Brown gambit:

    Glenrothes-with-Thornton.

    That’ll teach you GCHQ!

  152. halftracknat says:

    Yes!

  153. Andy-B says:

    Here’s Ian Dunt, from Politics.co.uk, saying that Alex Salmond is spewing myths and bedtime stories,Dunt’s incoherent ramblings about the FM’s career are tedious at best. Dunt is a less interesting version of Alistair Darling, which makes him a right Dunt.

    http://www.politics.co.uk/comment-analysis/2014/02/17/comment-salmond-is-making-it-up-as-he-goes-along-and-now-he

  154. cynicalHighlander says:

    Flipper flounders.

  155. twenty14 says:

    good evening

  156. Cindie says:

    Have just done the poll that Keith-B linked to on a previous thread (thanks Keith!) The poll is for Channel 4 and is here: http://www.channel4.com/news/scotland-independence-alex-salmond-sterling-pound-europe

    The poll is fairly simple, it asks if the participant is elegible to vote in the referendum and whether they will be voting yes or no – both were at approximately 80% for yes when I did it a few moments ago

    Additionally it asks, whether an independent Scotland should a/ be able to keep sterling and b/whether Scotland should be allowed to apply to join Europe. I get really annoyed that these polls and commentators make such sweeping and inaccurate assumptions, completely ignoring the fact that a/ there is nothing stopping us using the pound, and b/ that we are already in Europe. However, as there was no option for ‘it’ll be none of your business anyway after we vote for independence,’ I voted yes for both those options too.

  157. TheGreatBaldo says:

    I may be settling up everyone for a fall but this has appeared on Twitter….

    https://twitter.com/jesuisELP/status/435479311056142336

    Rev fire up the video capture !!!

  158. scottish_skier says:

    Look how far we have come. Independence has become normalised…

    …It’s happening.

    Yes, but such things start to feed on themselves and in a way become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

    Irony is, if the Westminster government had reacted by saying. ‘Ok, have your referendum. We don’t mind if you go. Hell, we’ll even help as much as possible…’ they might have had more hope of getting a No vote. 😉

  159. ronnie anderson says:

    ffs aff site fur two day,s an forgeting how tae spell ma ain name

  160. turnbull drier says:

    @ Linda’s back

    Ta for that, it’s cropped up at work so I wanted to get the correct info to refute it..

  161. john king says:

    I could do with some anger management,
    after watching STV reporter Claire Stewart asking people on Princes Street what their opinion of George Osborne’s comments about the use of the pound and Alex Salmond’s response was, the overwhelming response (but one who had an English accent and could well have been a visitor) was to suggest Osborne had badly misjudged the public reaction in Scotland , one woman quite vocal in her condemnation of Osbourne’s “blackmail” bizarrely this reporters findings were that the yes campaign were in trouble, complaint duly sent to STV news

  162. Papadocx says:

    Thanks Alistair & George for your joint effort.

    Result £1,300,000,000,000 of debt. you are well worth listening to.

  163. jingly jangly says:

    You have got it all wrong about Darling.

    He is acting like a prisoner of war, I just checked his blinks are repeating SOS over and over again.

  164. ronnie anderson says:

    AM hoarse Am hoarse shouting fur ma Country Am hoarse.

    1000 Yes newspaper folded ready for delivery, I hope the people

    that read them are shouting out tae.

  165. Bill Walters says:

    @Appleby “The thing about the currency that ranting mad men and scaremongers like Darling fail to mention is that the solution adopted for immediate post-independence is not necessarily the long term option over the years or generations either.”

    Although this is obviously true, there are a few problems with it as an argument for a currency union. While currencies can be changed, countries generally have to pretend otherwise in a currency union. If Scotland joined a currency union and made it clear that it was just a temporary solution until something better came along then it leaves the entire enterprise open to speculation in the markets. That’s one of the main criticisms that Nicholas MacPherson put forward, so I don’t think it works as an argument given the main thrust here is to try and win the rest of the UK round to a currency union.

    If we’re abandoning the currency union altogether then fair enough, but I think it’s clear from Salmond’s speech today that he’s not going to do that.

  166. liz says:

    O/T despite all the negative headlines – was passing 3 aged abt 20ish guys talking about whisky being 21% (I think it’s 25%)of the UKs total food and drink exports – so the message is being spread.

  167. Andy-B says:

    Here’s quite a good read about Catalonia and their struggle for independence. The Catalonian’s describe their bid for independence as a “Unstoppable train” their proposed referendum will take place on the 9th of November 2014.

    I hope they achieve their goal, after Scotland becomes independent.

    http://www.cafebabel.co.uk/politics/article/catalonia-the-collision-course-of-independence.html

  168. john king says:

    “almost one of us, what?”

    Should we be hearing that in a Bertie Wooster vernacular what?

  169. Tony Little says:

    @Neil

    Sent to following to Ms Winchester. Will advise if any response is received.

    Dear Ms Winchester

    I am writing to express my concern at the remarks by Mr Barroso on the Andrew Marr show yesterday (Sunday) in respect of the independence referendum in Scotland. He stated that it would be “almost impossible” for an Independent Scotland to be in the EU and they would have to apply. Note he said apply, not reapply or negotiate.

    Is this now the official position of the European Union towards a possible Independent Scotland, or is Mr Barroso expressing a personal opinion. The interview gave the distinct impression that this was now EU policy.

    I was also surprised that Mr Barroso regarded the position of an independent Scotland on a par with Kosovo. I am quite familiar with the situation in the Balkans and can find no comparisons whatsoever between Kosovo and Scotland. Can I ask again, is this the official EU position, or is Mr Barroso talking in his private capacity?

    I believe that Mr Barroso should not be interfering in the internal affairs of a Member State, and although he is retiring later this year, feel that such an intervention will bring negative perceptions on the neutrality of the position he holds, not only for him personally, but for future presidents of the European commission.

    As a proud European, with Scottish ancestry, I would welcome your clarification of the position. I would certainly not wish to have misinterpreted Mr Barroso’s stance, and to infer from his remarks that he was actively engaging in the internal affairs of the UK. Although I am sure you will be aware from the media coverage that this is EXACTLY how it is being presented.

    Thank you for your time. I await your clarification with interest.

  170. wingman 2020 says:

    https://vidd.me/aF7

    We are Better Supplicated

  171. spaceboy says:

    There are some seriously deluded people on this website.

    What part of the word NO, do you lot on here not understand? Are you seriously suggesting that for the next 6 months, the YES campaign is going to stick to the line that the Westminster government are lying?

    Lets look at this way. The SG are proposing a currency union with the rUK. Westminster have looked at this issue and decided that it is not reasonable to ask rUK taxpayers to potentially bail out an independent Scotland. What exactly is wrong with that? Would Scotland be able to bail out rUK, an economy 10 times its size? No, so what exactly is in it for the rUK apart from risk? And before you start banging on about balance of payments, that myth has already been debunked.

    If you ask me, the SG proposed a currency union as a trap for Westminster, no matter which way they leant. If they had said yes, the YES campaign would proclaim this as a victory for the feasibility of independence. By saying NO, Westminster have been accused of bullying. An interesting parallel is with the UK’s decision not to join the Euro. At the time, the Labour administration was applauded for representing the best interests of the country So what is different here?

    I strongly suggest that the idea of a currency union is abandoned, and the SG propose a free floating scottish pound instead. Oh and also, they would require to have their own central bank and currency as a condition of EU entry, So another reason to abandon currency union.

  172. wingman 2020 says:

    @johnking

    Just reading your comments and description was enough to make my blood boil. 🙂

  173. HandandShrimp says:

    It would be wonderful if one or two more BBC people would break ranks and lift the curtain on what is going on in the editorial control of their output because it gets more brazenly lopsided by the day. God help us if a poll coes out showing Yes in front.

    Talking of polls I was mildly surprised there were none at the weekend. I would imagine Prof Curtice is itching to see what three weeks of totally manic politics with a soupcon of threats and posturing thrown in for good measure has done to people. Certainly, talking to people in the office of a don’t know inclination, Osborne has not won any friends.

  174. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “And before you start banging on about balance of payments, that myth has already been debunked.”

    Do share.

  175. wingman 2020 says:

    @spaceboy

    We get some seriously deluded visitors as well.

    “I strongly suggest that the idea of a currency union is abandoned, and the SG propose a free floating scottish pound instead.”

    Sure… we will line that up for the three wise idiots of Troika spin and Captain Darling to rail against as well.

    They seek to sow confusion. Scottish Government should hold the line.

  176. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    What, where he says “In my view it is unlikely politically that no agreement would be secured with the UK government”? You agree with that too?

    Prof Ashcroft’s figures include some questionable “estimates”, and still result in several billions of pounds of contribution. He has, shall we say, some form in “spinning” figures to the UK’s advantage.

    http://wingsoverscotland.com/massive-oil-leak-discovered/

  177. spaceboy says:

    ingman 2020 says:
    17 February, 2014 at 7:07 pm
    @spaceboy

    We get some seriously deluded visitors as well.

    “I strongly suggest that the idea of a currency union is abandoned, and the SG propose a free floating scottish pound instead.”

    Sure… we will line that up for the three wise idiots of Troika spin and Captain Darling to rail against as well.

    They seek to sow confusion. Scottish Government should hold the line.

    Why? Answer my question above: is it reasonable for the rUK taxpayer to be at risk of having to bail out an independent Scotland?

  178. HandandShrimp says:

    Are you seriously suggesting that for the next 6 months, the YES campaign is going to stick to the line that the Westminster government are lying?

    Spaceboy

    What you mean the greenest government ever, or Clegg’s we will not increase tuition fees, or Darling of the pro-Iraq war dodgy dossier fame?

    Yup we will pursue the “this is politics” line for another 7 months. Why? Because this is politics. People do not tell the truth. They hedge their bets, they set up positions and bear traps that they hope others will fall into.

    Personally I don’t care if there is a currency union or we have our own but I can see a purpose in sticking to this if for no other reason than it gives Better Together no purchase on any other options.

  179. Muscleguy says:

    @appleby
    Strange you should mention Australia. There is currently a serious proposal from Australia for a formal currency union with New Zealand. They make these periodically. This would be equivalent to EWNI asking iScotland to enter a currency union in terms of relative sizes of economy.

    The Australian government apparently see no insurmountable problems for a currency union with a smaller neighbour. One to put in the debating bank I feel.

  180. spaceboy says:

    Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
    17 February, 2014 at 7:09 pm
    What, where he says “In my view it is unlikely politically that no agreement would be secured with the UK government”? You agree with that too?

    I never said that, I said that he has debunked the balance of payments myth. This analysis was months ago.

  181. Look Skye Walker says:

    Poor Al, he can feel that seat in the house of lords slipping away. No £300 a day attendance pension. Boo hoo!

  182. Bill Walters says:

    “I strongly suggest that the idea of a currency union is abandoned, and the SG propose a free floating scottish pound instead.”

    I don’t see how this is credible. The speech today and the accompanying research note illustrated the transaction costs which are created by Scotland having a different currency from the UK. More than that, it would have a greater effect on us as around 65% of our exports go to the rest of the UK.

    Maybe you can make some economic argument in favour of it, but politically it’s impossible. I don’t think the Yes side has any choice but to continue to back a currency union – there isn’t any other option at this point.

  183. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @Les Wilson says:
    Cameron has just said in a BBC interview that Alex Salmond wants a currency union ” but that it is under threat “.
    DOH, thought there was “NO CHANCE OF A CURRENCY UNION!

    OH MY GOD … the BT wheels have well and truly come off.

    Dave C had a worried look on his face.
    Dave C made it sound like Currency Union was back to ‘maybes aye, maybes naw’

    but worst of all …

    He stupidly used the ‘threat’ word twice.
    (Eck ‘under threat’ over currency, Eck ‘under threat’ over EU)

    This sort of schoolboy presentational error would never have happened in those Blair/Mandelson/Campbell days of old.
    I thought Dave had a PR background?

    OK … just this once I’ll not be a chippy Scot and imagine I’m being threated again by the elites for the third time in five days.

    I’ll not take it personally. I’ll put it down to posh boy insensitivity and stupidity.

  184. Look Skye Walker says:

    Poor Al, one minute you’re flipping, the next you’re flopping!

  185. heedtracker says:

    Just watched Pat Kane on C4 news and he was great! The Flipper was hideous, as per.

  186. wingman 2020 says:

    @handandshrimp

    Exactly correct.

  187. Malc says:

    Jon Snow gave darling a hard time on channel 4 News, Darling was all a twitch.

  188. gillie says:

    No campaign wobbles.

    Alistair Darling has said on Channel 4 News, ” I don’t believe there will be a currency union”.

    From certainty just yesterday to an opinion tonight.

  189. Andy-B says:

    Billy Connolly “I won’t vote in independence debate.

    http://www.deesidepiper.co.uk/news/scottish-headlines/connolly-won-t-vote-on-independence-1-3309634

    Meanwhile.

    Staying in the UK would be an academic disaster, say 60 Scottish professors and academics.

    http://www.deesidepiper.co.uk/news/scottish-headlines/no-vote-disastrous-academics-1-3309436

  190. john mclean says:

    alastair was looking a bit flustered on c4 news,john snow asking some awkward questions and he`s not used to that

  191. TheGreatBaldo says:

    Just watched something genuinely amazing a balanced piece on the Referendum on the MSM !!!

    Channel 4 News

    The VT package and Faisal Islam analysis dinnae vary much from the bog standard MSM line….

    But then….Jon Snow interviewed Darling gently at first but in the end had him gibbering as Snow observed Scotland is being treated like ‘a 3rd World country’…..

    Cue ‘I’m a proud Scot’ 🙂

    Then the lovely Cathy Freeman interviewed Pat Kane who got all his points over clearly and calmly.

    Reading between the lines Pat was either bluffing big style or I suspect the canvassing returns have been superb for YES and they are supremely confident of good poll numbers when they eventually appear.

    Well worth watching on Channel 4 +1 if you missed it.

  192. scottish_skier says:

    Mince

  193. Clootie says:

    Channel 4 – What a contrast between Darling and Pat Kane.
    Darling repeating the same old threats and lies all based on a “constructed” news base. Pat Kane Cheerful, positive and confident.

    I loved the quote of the headline from a “Scottish Newspaper”. The interviewer obviously doesn’t know that the title does not make it Scottish.

    I sense the decent journalists are becoming ashamed of the Fear tactics not being investigated or challenged.

  194. Clootie says:

    Channel 4 – What a contrast between Darling and Pat Kane.
    Darling repeating the same old threats and lies all based on a “constructed” news base. Pat Kane Cheerful, positive and confident.

    I loved the quote of the headline from a “Scottish Newspaper”. The interviewer obviously doesn’t know that the title does not make it Scottish.

    I sense the decent journalists are becoming ashamed of the Fear tactics not being investigated or challenged.

  195. ronnie anderson says:

    @Spaceboy 7.02 as you say some people are seriously deluded

    and you dont need to look far from you own door, to see that,

    I would suggest there is Space for more acurate information but

    it would be wasted on a Spaceheid.

  196. jingly jangly says:

    Jon Snow giving Darling semi-hard time on Ch 4 News!!!

    Dick Gaughan
    Are you practising covering a Pink Floyd song (Echoes):)

  197. Clootie says:

    🙁
    I don’t know why it appeared twice. Please don’t ban me. I’m already blocked from Newsnet for using ("Tractor" - Ed) (once).

  198. wingman 2020 says:

    @clootie

    Yer a dumplin’

  199. gordoz says:

    Channel 4 news was the most balanced piece I have seen broadcast for a very long time. Darling clearly not used to the robust line of questioning from Jon Snow; very different from the easy time he normally experiences from allies at the BBC and general MSM in Scotland.

    Keep it up C4, almost felt like impartial old school genuine investigative reporting.

    worth a watch !

  200. wingman 2020 says:

    @jinglyjangly

    The only thing that would give Darling one of these…

    …is a knighthood.

  201. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @Les Wilson says:
    Cameron has just said in a BBC interview that Alex Salmond wants a currency union ” but that it is under threat “.
    DOH, thought there was “NO CHANCE OF A CURRENCY UNION!

    (apologies is this post appears twice)
    The BT wheels have well and truly come off.

    Dave C had a worried look on his face.
    Dave C made it sound like Currency Union was back to ‘maybes aye, maybes naw’

    but worst of all …

    He stupidly used the ‘threat’ word twice.
    (Eck ‘under threat’ over currency, Eck ‘under threat’ over EU)

    This sort of schoolboy presentational error would never have happened in those Blair / Mandelson / Campbell days of old.
    I thought Dave C had a PR background?

    OK … just this once I’ll not be a chippy Scot and imagine I’m being threated again by the elites for the third time in five days.

    I’ll not take it personally. I’ll put it down to posh boy insensitivity, stupidity … and worry …

  202. Morag says:

    Jings, I decided not to watch C4 news because I was so fed up with it all – switched to Winter Olympics instead and had to watch the Scottish curling team being cheered on in a flurry of union flags and red-white-and-blue pom-poms.

    I should watch the C4 thing online, do you think? (But I actually like the ice dancing….)

  203. Caroline Corfield says:

    a bit O/T, having a debate on fb on a friend’s page and someone came up with the statement that the UK is the second fastest growing economy… was wondering if this is a BT ‘fact’ or a BBC ‘fact’ ( same difference?) and if other people are hearing this? I went off looking for some info and came across this site which was quite useful.

    https://www.conference-board.org/data/globaloutlook.cfm

  204. twenty14 says:

    @spaceboy

    “There are some seriously deluded people on this website. ”

    Welcome aboard the debate – would suggest your first line is not the best way to win any argument and put your case forward. I mean that’s what your on here for – isn’t it ??

  205. Dick Gaughan says:

    john king says:
    “almost one of us, what?”
    Should we be hearing that in a Bertie Wooster vernacular what?

    “I say, Jeeves, damned natives are restless again. Think we should send Aunt Agatha up there? Or would a tank be better?”

    “Is there a difference, sir?”

  206. Proud Cybernat says:

    @ Bill Walters

    “…There’s nothing preventing us from saying that an independent currency is a second option should the currency union not transpire….

    All the other options are in the White Paper. If, after A YES vote, negotiations for a formal Sterling currency union fail then, it stands to reason, that one of the other options from the White Paper will be adopted. Any person can go and look at the White Paper and investigate for themselves the pros and cons of each of those other options (plan B, C, D etc) and satisfy themselves that the currency question will be resolved one way or another in indy Scotland–preferably the SG’s Plan A–well in advance of our independence day.

  207. gordoz says:

    Is wings still under cyber attack ?

    If so its shocking & pathetic – my sympathies to all at Wings HQ

  208. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    Am I missing something?

    BBC Scotland news this evening is talking about the latest Scottish employment figures showing the fastest growth in permanent jobs since 2006.

    So permanent jobs in Scotland are growing at the fastest rate since 2006, in the teeth of all this FEARFUL UNCERTAINTY caused by reckless Eck and his separatist minions.

    Whatever you are doing Eck … please don’t stop …

  209. bunter says:

    I bet Osborne just loves having a tax named after him. ”The George Tax” LOL

  210. HandandShrimp says:

    Caroline

    I think they must mean in Europe because we are way behind in terms of growth in world terms. That said most of the UK growth is centred on London and the South East and in large part due to house price inflation. This is not sustainable (it is one of things that got us into this mess in the first place)

  211. gavin lessells says:

    Appreciative comments can be sent to C4 at news [at] channel4 [dot] com.
    They do occasionally reply. I quite often send Wings and Newsnet pieces which may be of interest. We need all the friends we can get!

  212. scottish_skier says:

    no again

  213. Proud Cybernat says:

    Here’s the Chanel 4 indy/currency Poll (thus far):

    http://tinyurl.com/kk2ju7a

  214. Famous15 says:

    Kin invite earlier in these comments mentioned EU Citzenship and give a link to the EU. I was gobsmacked as right there on there own page it is giving the lie to Barroso. We cannot lose our rights as EU citizens living here in Scotland regardless of events. Logic tells me if I cannot be stateless then neither can my nation be made stateless. Further the EU like the UN supports the democratic rights of those who wish independence and of course any curious and unique denial of these rights to Scotland is absurd and dangerous to the reputation of anyone supporting such nonsense .

    Please ,please those with a good turn of phrase contact the EU and get answers from them on these issues. Could I suggest they be asked for a declarator on human rights because we are suffering the uncertainty of our UK Government saying we will lose our EU citizenship and that is a cruel and unnatural punishment and breaches our human rights.

  215. Thepnr says:

    @spaceboy

    The Unionist No providers of UK propaganda may well have ruled out a currency union as unworkable based on the report provided by a Treasury senior Civil Servant.

    However I prefer the judgement of the four Economics Professors including two Nobel prize winners that were tasked with producing the report that the Scottish Government based their proposal on.

    Badly misjudged the Scottish people, Westminster own goal. No one believes the bullshit they have been harping on about for over a year. Over and over, currency, EU, currency, EU. Yawnnn.

  216. TheGreatBaldo says:

    FAO Any monetary experts

    Asked this on Twitter but whats the major difference between the Currency Union and the proposed Devo Max?

    It’s very simplistic but as far as I understand they are almost identical in principle..

    Currency Union :
    BoE Central Bank with 2 Tax Authorities (rUk & Scotland) and borrowing limits.

    Devo Max/Full Fiscal Autonomy
    BoE Central Bank with 4-5 Tax Authorities (rUk,Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland..possibly England too) and borrowing limits.

    So if Currency Union has been ruled out by OsBalls….they have surely made Devo Max/FFF undeliverable too.

    I await the experts to telling me I’m a havering idiot

  217. john king says:

    muttley
    copy the address from the line above the video and paste it into your comment and it’ll come up (eventually it’ll take a few seconds) as the video simples 🙂

  218. Better Together St Kilda says:

    Hi folks – you can ‘refresh’ on quarantine, at least it works for us.

  219. kininvie says:

    @spaceboy

    The UK taxpayers being forced to bail out Scotland argument looks a bit threadbare when you remember that the UK put huge sums into ‘bailing out’ Ireland – when it had no legal or moral obligation to do so.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/8139354/UK-pledges-7bn-to-help-bail-Ireland-out-of-debt-crisis.html

    It did it voluntarily because Ireland is a significant trading partner, and damage to Ireland meant damage to UK.

    Should a financial crisis ever hit Scotland, the same UK self-interest would apply. Whether that is formalised in a currency union or not does not actually make a great deal of difference to the pressures that would arise.

  220. john king says:

    “Is there a difference, sir?”

    what ho Dick

  221. gillie says:

    You get the feeling that the No campaign are beginning to realise their threats to Scotland have caused a lot of resentment. I would expect that those aligned and supportive of the No campaign are beginning to question their tactics.

    You don’t have democratic legitimacy by issuing threats.

  222. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Check out the CH4 poll Cindie linked to at 6.38.

    The numbers are astonishing – four questions, and none currently less than 80% Yes (the last, about Scotland being ‘allowed’ into EU, was 89% a few minutes ago.)

  223. Patrician says:

    I have only watched about 1 minute of this but what is it with the constant blinking? Is there someone trapped inside that head with only control of the eyelids frantically signalling in morse code, “Get me out of here”.

  224. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @gillie says:
    You get the feeling that the No campaign are beginning to realise their threats to Scotland have caused a lot of resentment.

    I was joking last week after Gideon’s speech that NO-voters would no longer be able to admit this in polite company.
    (Like what happened in the Thatcher era to Tory voters in Scotland)

    I get the feeling that events are moving us down this road at a fairly brisk pace …

  225. gordoz says:

    Still problems refreshing page & comments

  226. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    Flippertygibbet

  227. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Is wings still under cyber attack?”

    Yes.

  228. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I never said that”

    Ah, so you only agree with the bits of his analysis that suit you. Righto.

  229. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “is it reasonable for the rUK taxpayer to be at risk of having to bail out an independent Scotland?”

    Bail out what, exactly?

  230. john king says:

    Famous 15

    your doing alright yourself, why don’t you contact Thomas Rhymer of the ODIHR, nice guy he’ll respond Thomas Rymer
    Spokesperson
    OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR)

    Tel: +48 22 520 0640
    Mobile: +48 609 522 266

  231. Elizabeth says:

    Just watched captain Darling again on Channel4 News. Flustered and gabbling through his interview with Jon Snow. Didn’t like the inference that Osborne’s lecture was disrespectful to the Scots. He even came out with the “look, I’m a proud Scot” bit. On the other hand, Pat Kane from the Yes Scotland Board was confident, relaxed, intelligent and convincing when he said he was excited about the possibilities that a Yes vote will bring and that the events of the past week were pushing the undecided towards that very conclusion.

  232. TYRAN says:

    Someone take the Darling sound but add Comical Ali video to it.

  233. Croompenstein says:

    OMG! have just done the Channel 4 survey and currently 7500 respondents and 81% in favour of Yes. Can we send this info to Flipper or big Bliar..:)

  234. Dcanmore says:

    Hi Caroline …

    While it is true that the IMF is stating that the British economy is growing better than anyone else in the EU, it has to be put into context. What they’re saying is that the economy is heading back to pre-recession levels so essentially welcome back to 2007. That means the economy has to grow continually above 2007 levels (say 3-3.5%) to claw back what was lost to the economy over the past six years. In other words it will be 2019-21 (of sustained growth) before the UK will actually see benefits of a growing economy. Remember also this is a slow process for the government as it has £1.3 trillion debt and a massive pension black hole, not only that but peoples wages have been frozen or fallen below inflation and still a generally high unemployment rate.

    This is why austerity measures will be in place for years to come, growth in the economy means nothing until the government and the country as a whole actually feels that change. That will happen but not until the end of this decade. When Labour said they would carry on with austerity measures when they get into power, what they actually mean is they have no choice but will be rewarded (as would the Tories) as being the party in power in 2020 when the recession ended and austerity measures cut. This is what the parties are playing for, hero status. Growth in the economy now, like shedding a half per cent off unemployment, is a propaganda tool for news headlines.

    If Cameron wins 2015 GE (Scotland is a massive headache) then he will more than likely win 2020 as well as all the right-wing media will champion that his and Gideon’s austerity plan was right and good for the country, Maggie all over again. So while the economic forecast now sounds impressive the country is six years behind where it should be economically and we ourselves won’t feel any benefit for few years yet. And this is as long as there’s no hiccups along the way.

    Hope that helps otherwise I’m talking pish 😉

  235. Cindie says:

    @Ian Brotherhood. There are big numbers for that poll too, Ian, it was at approx 5,000 participants when I did it

  236. Bill Walters says:

    “Bail out what, exactly?”

    A currency union under the model proposed means the Bank of England acting as lender of last resort: i.e. English, Welsh and Northern Irish taxpayers guaranteeing Scottish debt (and vice versa). It might never come to the point where bailouts have to be implemented, but at least formally it requires the rest of the UK to agree that they have an obligation to bail us out if we can no longer pay our debts.

  237. john king says:

    ” there are a few problems with it as an argument for a currency union. While currencies can be changed, countries generally have to pretend otherwise in a currency union.”

    What? as in a ned says yea you’ll do (to a chick) until someone better comes along?
    yep good luck with that chat up line 🙂

  238. Indy_Scot says:

    Billy Connollys view on the referendum,

    “I think the Scots will come to a good conclusion in the referendum, they’ll get what they deserve.”

    I am no expert at reading between the lines, but I would like to think that what he was actually saying, was that if the Scots vote ‘Yes’ then they will have a future the envy of the world, and if they vote ‘no’, they will get a good kick in from the south for daring to rise above their station.

  239. Les Wilson says:

    SquareHaggis says:

    SH,
    Hardly, UK signed up the debt,they are responsible, just as a mortgage lender cannot asked a lodger. Well he could ask, just like Osborne, and just like him, they are likely to be told “get stuffed”

  240. Cindie says:

    I’ve saved the link to those poll answers, it’s via Google analytics and now over 7,000 partcipants and rising. Anyone know the best way to capture this info? Link below:

    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1bjntrrT_1zy4eEdG8FNAPJB_-usej61UgerYAD3t-gc/viewanalytics

  241. Dcanmore says:

    @HandandShrimp …

    Totally agree, any ‘growth’ is coming from the SE and London. Miliband has just had a large article published in the London Evening Standard on how he wants to build 200,000 new London homes to alleviate the inflated housing bubble. Also he says he wants to go further and create new commuter towns and garden cities around London. Nice to see Ed bringing forth the benefits of the union there. London grows while the UK rots.

  242. john king says:

    “I no longer get upset with BBC or the Fourth Estate.”

    Can I have some of the drugs you’re taking 🙂

  243. David Agnew says:

    like rev said, you have to wonder at the mind set of someone who lies to the extent he does. I have to wonder about this man. His principle argument as to the benefits of union, is that having presided over the near total collapse of the UK banking system, and then having used tax payers money to bail those same banks out, is proof positive the the UK is safer than independence. This performance & all the others is like a political version of Ganser syndrome. A recognised medical condition were the sufferers give idiotic answers to simple questions.

    It makes me worried about the mental health of these people. There is a real sickness at the very heart of the better together campaign.

    I think its driving them mad.

  244. Les Wilson says:

    I would LOVE to see Eck v Darling, with one proviso, that BT have a resuscitation team on hand for Darling.However I understand Eck’s position, organ master,not the monkey kind of thing, still I can dream.

    In truth,he can say all he wants, but he really,really, does not want it to happen, he prefers to hide behind the MSM so can say anything without being challenged. Even then, he is soon a basket case within a couple of minutes.

  245. john king says:

    “You know that bloke Alistair Darling ?

    He’s a blinking liar, he is”

    Colonel Blink?

  246. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    I have atchived the latest state of the C4 Poll to:-

    http://archive.is/aQxIG

    I have also been commenting on it on Al Jazeera, and UK newspaper websites … seemed to cause consternation on the Telegraph … 🙂

  247. Jamie Arriere says:

    @Spaceboy,

    What is your opinion of the work of Joe Stiglitz, James Mirrlees etc?

    Clueless, partisan amateurs?

  248. Alec says:

    I’ve been trying to post a number of things on previous threads, but they seem to be wiped, but someone asked me a question about a poll that showed 55% opposed to Scotland using sterling.

    The results are here – http://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/s1ec3emgrq/YG-Archive-140214-Scotland-Pound.pdf

    It’s a YG poll from 3 days ago, so much more up to date than the Panelbase poll from December, which also had some pretty poorly worded preamble to the question (commissioned by the SNP, who will have written the question).

    The latest poll shows E&W voters opposed to shared currency by a decisive 58/23 margin. This is the democratic reality that the SNP are trying to call bluster. You cannot leave a currency union, and then demand that the residual part joins a brand new union with completely different rules – not unless they want to, and clearly they don’t. There’s a democratic element here – the UK doesn’t support this arrangement, and I’m really sorry, but 58m voters have rights too.

    I was intrigued by Rev C’s treatment of that rather devastating critique by Prof Ashcroft of the balance of trade argument. I’ve seen a few analyses in similar vein, which point up the simplistic notion of taking oil and assuming all of that would be a net loss to the UK BOP. Like other commentators, Ashcroft is a good source when he says something positive for yes, but suspect when not.

    The main thrust of Alex’s argument today seems to be the pain that would be caused by transaction costs, which, oddly, is precisely the logic being applied by BT. It’s the nationalists that want to leave the currency union – that’s what independence means. [At this point I am greatly tickled by a tweet from someone who characterized Salmond’s ‘outrage’ as the SNP demanding that rUK ‘stop treating Scotland like a foreign country’].

    The key argument about transaction costs is overdone. Much has been made on here about how Scots don’t like being told what they have to do – well England, Wales and NI are no different, funnily enough. We don’t want an unworkable currency union, and you can threaten us with all manner of pain, but it will just make us all the more resistant. Why should we react any different to you?

    We were told by plenty of people that we had to join the Euro, or see an end to inward investment and general doom all round. In fact, England has done pretty well in high investment industries like car manufacture, which is now at record levels, and serving as a base for EU and global exports. Transaction costs don’t seem to be an issue.

    There are risks to the UK from a free floating Scotland, but they’re aren’t that great – you’re simply not that important to them.

    Over time, you would probably see a drift of business south of the border, as an oil backed currency might well be less stable and therefore more risky, but I don’t expect this would be a huge problem.

    You’ve really got to deal with this currency issue. Standing there with your bottom lip quivering, stamping your feet, and demanding a currency union just isn’t going to work. The UK doesn’t want it, doesn’t need it, and won’t have it. Nothing’s going to chance that, and the implications for the UK are – well, really not that much at all, to be honest.

  249. Thepnr says:

    @Bill Walters.

    Read what the FM had to say on this matter today in his speech, not reported however as far as I’m aware:

    “However in a recent statistical publication, HMRC estimated Scotland’s share of the Bank Levy (effectively a charge on the balance sheets of banks) to be 7.3 per cent of the UK total – smaller than Scotland’s share of UK GDP – not the near 25 per cent which the Treasury has estimated and on which the Chancellor’s remarks are based.”

    Now read this article from Business For Scotland for an explanation of where bank bailouts originate.

    http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/bizforscotland-destroys-the-no-campaigns-bank-bail-out-lies/

  250. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    A wee tactical question for the Intergalactic Cybernat Council.

    If we were to accidentally bring down the UK Coalition government this side of the independence referendum, is that good or bad?

    Just sayin’ …

  251. Cindie says:

    Great stuff @Calgacus, have saved that archive link for the poll to my list of ammo x

  252. R Whittington says:

    I’d say its not been a great day for the YES campaign. But that’s just my opinion. What do you guys think?

  253. gerry parker says:

    @ronnie anderson.
    Well done on the paper folding Ronnie. Everyone doing anything they can. Wasn’t a day to go out delivering today so I just did some local canvassing. Amazing how many people have twigged to the scaremongering. John Swinney in Coatbridge College on 25th @7:30.

  254. Bill Walters says:

    @Thepnr That’s a response to the argument about the size of the Scottish financial sector (i.e. the argument that it would be too risky for rUK to enter into a currency union with Scotland on the grounds that its financial sector is so large it would be a risk to stability). The link is about whether Scotland would have been able to bail out its banks during the financial crisis if it wasn’t part of the UK.

    These are two separate issues, what we’re talking about is the principle of having a lender of last resort – i.e. that in principle the rest of the UK would be obliged to bail us out if we couldn’t pay our debts. Nobody can say whether they would actually have to do this in practice, but they would have to agree to do it in principle for a currency union to work (otherwise we’d have no lender of last resort).

  255. heedtracker says:

    @Ian Brotherhood thanks for the headsup on the C4 news online referendum. I got mine in but maybe I should’ve voted No, just to keep it sporting:D

    Yes 6543 81%

    No 1523 19%

    Scottish independence

  256. scottish_skier says:

    @Alec
    I’ve been trying to post a number of things on previous threads, but they seem to be wiped, but someone asked me a question about a poll that showed 55% opposed to Scotland using sterling.

    The rapid reversal from panelbase findings you note in Yougov after Osballsgate is called ‘the end of the union’. rUK electorate rally behind the UK government, Scots behind the Scottish one. When the gloves come off, that’s what happens.

    It seems to be feeding upon itself now. We very likely have reached the point that there’s no going back. ‘Tipping point’ some call it.

    Going to be very interesting from now on in, but you might want to hold on to your hat.

  257. Alec says:

    @Dcanmore – “If Cameron wins 2015 GE…..”

    I have to say that this outcome really doesn’t look very likely.

    By 2015, it will be 28 years since the Tories last won a solid working majority. As it happens, in 1992 Scotland, in effect, gave Major his 22 seat majority, with 11 Tory MPs north of the border, but there’s no chance of that now.

    Since then, there has been a progressive shrinkage of Tory support across the few enclaves they had in the north of England, urban areas, and their limited recovery in Wales is now reversing. They are under performing their national standing in the seat rich London area, and the swing against them in marginals has been consistently larger than the national swing.

    Tory party membership has plummeted and in many areas – even their strongholds – Conservative Clubs are closing down and their once fabled ground operation is dying out.

    UKIP are not going to replace Tories. They will hurt them in 2015, but it’s hard to conceive of any seats UKIP can actually win. I’ve always felt that Thatcher’s greatest legacy to this country (the UK, I mean) is to make the Tories unelectable.

    Cameron couldn’t win in 2010, and since then they’ve gone backwards.

  258. Indy_Scot says:

    R Whittington, I think you need to try and make it less obvious.

  259. Robert Kerr says:

    @john king

    No drugs, just cold disdain for these people and belief in the future.

    My “tipping point” has passed.

  260. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “A currency union under the model proposed means the Bank of England acting as lender of last resort: i.e. English, Welsh and Northern Irish taxpayers guaranteeing Scottish debt (and vice versa). It might never come to the point where bailouts have to be implemented, but at least formally it requires the rest of the UK to agree that they have an obligation to bail us out if we can no longer pay our debts.”

    I didn’t ask you what a bailout meant. I know what a bailout means. I asked you WHAT would be getting bailed out.

  261. Morag says:

    Epping Forest

  262. Thepnr says:

    Hey Alec

    I think the FM dealt with the currency issue today. It is in rUK’s interests too to have one despite what a senior Civil Servant may suggest.

    They know it, I know it and word of mouth will make sure the majority of Scots know it prior to the Referendum. You point out a poll showing 55% opposed to a currency union.

    that holds no surprises for me whatsoever, it’s fairly obvious that if your information only comes from the MSM then you are likely to be informed enough to take a measured opinion. Distortion due to propaganda. Seriously how much does the average English person know about what a currency union entails?

    Only that rUK will have to bail out Scottish banks maybe? Peddle “lender of last resort” long enough it’s all they will absorb. What about the real issues this will cause for the rUK, why aren’t the public being told that in fact Scotland doesn’t scrounge it actually subsidises the rUK or what about balance of payments? These will be real issues without a currency union, if you continue to peddle this nonsense. I guarantee Yes will win a resounding victory.

    I think it is right that we should take our population share of debt even though it was NEVER spent on Scotlands behalf. However if Westminster want to play hardball then be it on their own head.

  263. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I have to say that this outcome really doesn’t look very likely.”

    That’s what they said about Major in 1992. The UK public, when it comes to the crunch, will not elect Ed Miliband their leader. No chance. UKIP voters will go back to the Tories in large numbers rather than let that happen, because Cameron is promising the EU referendum they crave above all else – as I’ve said for a while now, the “real” polling is Labour vs (Tories + (UKIP x 0.5)), and on that formula Labour are consistently behind.

  264. G H Graham says:

    @spaceboy

    Did you go to the same school of diplomacy as George Osborne?

    “There are some seriously deluded people on this website.”

    I’m not deluded & I support full sovereign independence because I want to vote for a government that sits inside the borders of my own country.

    I also want all the taxes raised in my country, spent in my country. I hope to be able to vote on a new constitution and an opportunity to get rid of Nukes.

    I no longer want to be governed using laws written by over 700 unelected Lords and 23 English Bishops.

    The Royal family is an anachronism in a modern democracy but its not a priority to abolish the monarchy quite yet.

    As for currency, I couldn’t care less what its called just so long as the shopkeepers accept it which is more than I have experienced trying to use Scottish notes in England.

    Also I don’t approve of spending billions to kill foreigners for some obscure political motive when we are under no threat from invasion.

    A balanced state broadcaster answerable to the people would be nice. But I refuse to be taxed for watching state propaganda which is what we get now.

    I could go one but wouldn’t want you think me delusional.

    By the way, got any positive arguments for staying with the union?

  265. heedtracker says:

    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1bjntrrT_1zy4eEdG8FNAPJB_-usej61UgerYAD3t-gc/viewanalytics. Hope the Flipper’s put his C4 vote in. There goes the knighthood Alistair, had a good run though, several lovely homes, London, Embro etc and nae doubt the CBI will slot you onto a board or two of some City banks. for your wiseness.

  266. Roll_On_2014 says:

    Come out, come out ya buggers wherever you are!

  267. Alec says:

    @Scottish Skier – “rUK electorate rally behind the UK government,…”

    WTF! You are really living in a dreamland. The idea that UK voters are rallying behind their government is laughable – we despise them, in wellies or on dry land. The results of this poll are a reflection of the fact that we’ve just seen the results of an appalling badly constructed currency union on our own doorstep.

    Jeez – next, people on this site will be getting excited about results from self selecting online polls….

    @R Whittington – you ask if people think this has been a good day for the Yes campaign. To be honest, I really don’t know.

    Osborne and Cameron’s ratings are really poor, and there’s no doubt that they irritate people. While economically their play makes complete sense, polling wise could be different.

    Having said that, I really thought Salmond would come out with something more defined today. To me, it just came across as repetitive insistence on his point, which has pretty much been buried. Risk is a problem for the Yes campaign, but I’ve got no sense of how normal people are reacting to this as yet.

  268. kininvie says:

    @alec

    Let’s turn this one back on itself for a moment. Alistair Darling’s argument is that we have a currency union and the best way to ensure it continues is to vote No. This, of course, ignores the many other reasons why people might vote Yes..but that is by the way.

    So the argument is that it works at the moment for both nations. Fine. Now, suppose Scotland votes Yes, why should it not continue to work? – with the advantage of saving trouble and cost for everyone.

    The counter argument is that we would have to concede some sovereignty – OK – no country in the Eurozone, not even Greece is prepared to leave the Euro on that account.

    But it’s also this business of having to bail out a foreign country. As I linked above, the UK did precisely that in the case of Ireland – without a currency union – because it was in the UK’s interests. All a currency union does is formalise that responsibility. It would happen anyway because it would be in the UK’s interest.

    As for lender of last resort – I refer you to Sir Philip Hampton’s evidence here:

    http://www.parliament.uk/documents/lords-committees/economic-affairs/ScottishIndependence/ucEAC20121113Ev15.pdf

    He makes it quite clear that lender of last resort facilities are available to banks from the central banks of whatever country they operate in, and that an independent Scotland would pose no problems in that respect.

    So I really don’t see what the fuss is about – seems to me it is being created for entirely political purposes.

  269. jingly jangly says:

    arran (refresh)

  270. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I’d say its not been a great day for the YES campaign”

    I don’t think anything really happened today. Salmond said what we all knew he’d say, and the Unionists interestingly muddied their position somewhat, with Cameron and Darling both basically reverting to “currency union is UNLIKELY”, when just last week it was “definitely not”. Maybe it was just a couple of slips of the tongue. But certainly nothing new occurred.

    I still don’t think Yes can get all the way to September on “they’re bluffing” alone, but the next week or two should be worth watching. I think the No camp realise they’ve made a bit of a tactical blunder in laying down the law to Scots.

  271. Croompenstein says:

    @Alec – You’ve really got to deal with this currency issue. Standing there with your bottom lip quivering, stamping your feet, and demanding a currency union just isn’t going to work. – Now please tell me just who is DEMANDING a currency union..You try and come across as intelligent and wordy but you are just showing yourself to be a bit of an oaf. Please provide links or evidence of anyone demanding a currency union and I will bow to your superior wisdom!

  272. Bill Walters says:

    @RevStu “I didn’t ask you what a bailout meant. I know what a bailout means. I asked you WHAT would be getting bailed out.”

    You’re either asking a completely pointless question or you don’t understand the point that was being made. A currency union requires a lender of last resort to work. That means the rest of the UK would have to agree in principle to bail us out if we couldn’t pay our debts.

    So when spaceboy above asks “Is it reasonable for the rUK taxpayer to be at risk of having to bail out an independent Scotland?” (the exact quote you’re responding to) that’s precisely what he means. Responding to that with “what would be bailed out?” is completely irrelevant to the point being made – i.e. that a currency union necessitates that the rest of the UK accept the risk of having to bailout Scotland’s economy if the government can no longer pay its debts.

    If you really want an answer to your question then it’s “the Scottish public finances, in the hypothetical situation that we can no longer pay our debts”. Where that gets us is beyond me, though.

  273. Jeannie says:

    @Bill Walters

    Although this is obviously true, there are a few problems with it as an argument for a currency union. While currencies can be changed, countries generally have to pretend otherwise in a currency union. If Scotland joined a currency union and made it clear that it was just a temporary solution until something better came along then it leaves the entire enterprise open to speculation in the markets

    Bill, you’ll have to bear with me here as I’m no hot-shot on matters related to the currency, but I have a question related to your post: If making it clear that you intend to change your currency in the future leaves you open to speculation in the markets (and I can see what you’re getting at here)and this is a reason against a currency union, does joining the Exchange Rate Mechanism as a precursor to adopting the Euro, not risk exactly the same speculation? How do countries get around this? Just asking because I genuinely wonder about it. Question open to Bill or anyone who can help.

  274. Findlay Farquaharson says:

    channel 4 polls very nice.

  275. Jeannie says:

    @Rev Stu

    The wee icons at the top of the comment box which used to let me italicize words has disappeared. How do I do it now?

  276. Taranaich says:

    @joe kane: Is there a name for the public display of such uncontrollable pavlovian display of emotion (such as “road rage”) which Alex Salmond provokes across the British establishment?

    I think there must be a correlation between how strongly a politician is hated by other politicians, and the level of trust they have with the public. Case in point: who do you think Thatcher’s most popular among, politicians or the general public?

    Really starting to truly despise the BBC for their constant reinforcement of the pound & the EU being the most important things in the referendum. But I’m starting to really struggle getting others to understand why I have this disdain: who are you going to believe, some weirdo cybernat, or the Esteemed British Broadcasting Corporation?

    Because it isn’t just independence the BBC’s biased against. It’s complicit in perpetuating IDS’ “benefit fraud” crusade (surely the fact that Atos does their IT has nothing to do with that?) It’s heavily biased in favour of the coalition even in reports not relating to independence (as suggested by a new paper which supports the right-wing bias of recent years), which corresponds to its role in the debates on fracking, immigration and education. And do I even need to talk about the sex abuse scandal?

    Undecided voters might just shrug off accusations of the BBC being biased against independence. But can they really ignore the BBC’s bias in other areas?

    @Craig: As much as I feel Darling has lost the plot, what scares me more is the complete partiality of almost all the recognised media. The so called big guns of Scottish reporting have shown themselves to be incapable or incompetent in asking any searching questions of the Better Together Campaigners. I always wondered how the Nazis could rise so easily, but when you have journalists more interested in their jobs than the potential devastation of their country you can see how easy it was.

    It’s a tall order, but I REALLY think that somebody in BBC who’s pro-indy (and they do exist, see Derek Bateman) has to speak out and risk it all.

    @joe kane: As someone has already brought up the topic of clumsy English-based comedy interventions in the referendum debate, here is the News Thump Facebook in its comments thread tying itself up in knots trying to justify its uninformed unionist propaganda. See the nested threads –

    Oh God, Joe… You shouldn’t have bothered. Every bad comedian who makes a bad joke will just reply with “ah, you just don’t get it, sense of humour failure, etc.” It’s like playing chess with a pigeon, or Blair McDougall: even when you present facts, figures, precedent and everything, he’ll just knock over the pieces, shite all over the board and strut around victoriously. And the gaggling numpties who couldnae gie a fig about politics will chortle mightily at the “sensitive Indy supporters.”

    If this was the ’80s they’d happily make jokes about hanging Nelson Mandela in prison, and play the “it’s SATIRE, duuurh” card, as if saying something’s satirical excuses offensive garbage.

  277. laukat says:

    Have to say it is hugely encouraging to hear so many pro independence voices phoning into radio talk shows and texting in comments to news stories. The callers in the last few weeks to the normally pro union “Call Kaye” on Radio Scotland have been really wonderful to hear. Well informed and passionate people.

    This morning the chap who asked Blair MacDougall how he would propose they take away his European driving certificates was fantastic and it wasn’t a surprise that Blair had to leave soon after for another appointment. Whoever you were – Well done sir!

    My dad used to stand handout pro independence leaflets back in the 60’s and 70’s and at that time was he was verbally abused, made to feel stupid and an irrelevance

    It brings a lump to your throat to hear such audible evidence that the effort he and countless others put in is on the cusp of bearing fruit.

  278. Morag says:

    As it happens, in 1992 Scotland, in effect, gave Major his 22 seat majority, with 11 Tory MPs north of the border, but there’s no chance of that now.

    Arithmetic fail. Scotland voted much less strongly for the Tories in 1992 than England did. You can’t subtract the 11 Tory MPs without subtracting the “feeble 49” Labour MPs (and the 12 LibDem/SNP ones) as well.

  279. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    Here’s tonight’s C4 Pat Kane interview on YouTube:-

  280. X_Sticks says:

    Sorry if anyone’s caught this already…

    ‘Is traditional journalism broken in Scotland?’ Part 1:

    by Colin Meek

    http://www.journalism.co.uk/news-commentary/is-traditional-journalism-broken-in-scotland-/s6/a555869/

    Well said that man.

  281. Murray McCallum says:

    Angry, Darling?

  282. Thepnr says:

    Alec

    Just join LFI and get it over with, they are queuing up to join. Get in there before the crowds, show a bit of spine.

    Look forward to welcoming you to the cause. A real opportunity for change, no more Tories, UKIP unheard of and a government that WE vote for.

    Come on, you know in your heart of hearts it makes sense.

  283. G H Graham says:

    This bailout argument is boring the tits off me.

    The point of having proper financial regulations is to prevent the collapse in the first place. It used to exist but politicians eroded them until they were worthless.

    The mingling of traditional banking & casino banking started in 1998 when the Federal Reserve approved Citibank’s 1998 affiliation with US securities firm, Salomon Smith Barney. This prompted Bill Clinton to begin the repeal of the Glass–Steagall Act.

    Britain promptly followed suit, setting up the conditions to allow huge banks to fail but take no risks because the Treasury for example would become lender of last resort. We, the public are paying for this catastrophic series of politically motivated decisions.

    But, an independent Scotland has a chance at a fresh start, reintroducing the proper controls, rules & penalties to prevent this from ever happening again.

    Depending on a lender of last resort then, will in due course be completely unnecessary.

  284. scottish_skier says:

    The wee icons at the top of the comment box which used to let me italicize words has disappeared. How do I do it now?

    like this.

    http://www.w3schools.com/tags/tag_i.asp

  285. tartanfever says:

    Alec,

    For the second time today, the SNP do not want to end the currency union.

    Will you please stop this misleading clap trap by saying they do.

    Or, at least have the decency to give us just one direct quote from the SNP saying ‘we want to end the currency union’ to back up your argument.

  286. john king says:

    “OMG! have just done the Channel 4 survey and currently 7500 respondents and 81% in favour of Yes. Can we send this info to Flipper or big Bliar..:)”

    I think they might already know 🙂

  287. Shiehallion! Shiehallion! says:

    Turn again, Dick Whittington.

  288. cynicalHighlander says:

    @
    Jeannie says:
    17 February, 2014 at 9:33 pm

    @Rev Stu

    The wee icons at the top of the comment box which used to let me italicize words has disappeared. How do I do it now?

    Try without [] and replace with greater lesser symbols [i]script[/i]

  289. Murray McCallum says:

    “… that a currency union necessitates that the rest of the UK accept the risk of having to bailout Scotland’s economy if the government can no longer pay its debts.”

    Someone appears to state this as some kind of a given fact.

    The first port of call when a bond issuer is not able to meet interest payments on its debts are with the holders of those bonds. They may negotiate new terms of the debt and/or write off part of the redemption value.

  290. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    Here’s Jon Snow on C4 this evening tormenting Max Headroom, sorry … tormenting Flipper.

  291. Jeannie says:

    @scottish skier
    @cynical highlander

    AH….now I get it! I know it’s up above the box, but I hadn’t a clue what it meant. Have just tried an example and it worked. Thanking ye.

  292. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Just watched Darling having his short and curlies pulled by Jon Snow (that would make anyone blink, surely?).

    I was prepared for the same-old, same-old, but it seems that he’s actually getting worse. A truly pathetic performance from a sad and increasingly isolated man.

  293. G H Graham says:

    I think its beginning to daw on old flipper Darling that easing into an ermine retirement robe might just be one Zimmer step too far.

  294. MajorBloodnok says:

    @helpmabob/Morag

    Parallels? Right then, St John’s Wood, wouldn’t he?

  295. Findlay Farquaharson says:

    darling says he will live in scotland after indy, will he? i doubt it.

  296. Murray McCallum says:

    If Darling ceased to live in Scotland it would free up lots of housing space.

    Maybe he will move to Spain?

  297. cynicalHighlander says:

    @Jeannie

    Use a b and it looks like this.

  298. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @Findlay Farquaharson says:
    darling says he will live in scotland after indy, will he? i doubt it.

    That was a below-the-belt ermine-related trick question from Jon Snow.

    🙂

  299. kininvie says:

    I think there’s a problem with the Channel 4 poll, in so far as I can’t find a ‘no multiple vote’ barrier.

    Of course, no respectable cybernat would vote more than once, but the other side’s votes are obviously exaggerated.

    🙂

  300. Taranaich says:

    There are some seriously deluded people on this website.

    And a good evening to you, spaceboy. 🙂

    What part of the word NO, do you lot on here not understand? Are you seriously suggesting that for the next 6 months, the YES campaign is going to stick to the line that the Westminster government are lying?

    Well given that the Westminster government consistently lie on a regular basis about all manner of things (just look at their response to the floods) I think there comes a point where you can, in fact, legitimately say that they’re lying. Ask yourself why the BBC don’t seem interested in interrogating anyone from the Coalition, let alone Osborne himself, with the same energy they do for Salmond, Sturgeon & Darling.

    Lets look at this way. The SG are proposing a currency union with the rUK. Westminster have looked at this issue and decided that it is not reasonable to ask rUK taxpayers to potentially bail out an independent Scotland. What exactly is wrong with that?

    Here’s what’s wrong with this: everybody’s challenging Salmond et al over this, but not a single person on TV aside from Bernard Posonby really challenged Osborne. Guess what? No answer whatsoever.

    But in any case, that’s all beside the point, because YET AGAIN we’re getting told what the “important issues” are, while the things which truly affect Scots like Trident, welfare, jobs, health and education are left to the sideline – because the Establishment has no power to say anything over it. The pound, the EU, border controls – that’s all they have any power over, and so that’s the only area they can possibly spin in an anti-independence slant. So instead of conceding that an Indy Scotland couldn’t POSSIBLY do a worse job than the UK with its NHS, schools, employment and welfare – certainly not when Scotland outperforms the UK even with the tight fiscal levers put in place – they have to stick with the pound and the EU, because those are the only places they can even pretend they have power over – even if that power is illusory and collapses under the most basic scrutiny.

    Let’s say the government are right. Let’s say we wouldn’t get to use the pound, even though dozens of nations which gained independence from Westminster had a currency union, and even though dozens more *still* use Sterling without a formal arrangement. Let’s say the EU are complete idiots and strip 5.3 million EU citizens of their citizenship while the state they “seceded” from has a referendum which will likely mean they leave. Let’s say all that’s true. Does that really, truly make independence any less worthwhile?

    Even outside the EU, even without the pound, even with increasingly xenophobic England putting up border posts, an independent Scotland would still have control over income tax, corporation tax, oil revenues, welfare, VAT, defence, foreign policy, trade & industry, transport, energy regulation, the constitution, crown Estates, civil service, national security, immigration, and broadcasting. And we’d ENSURE that the Scots would get the government the Scots vote for. Right now, all that’s under Westminster control, and in case you hadn’t noticed, Westminster is DESTROYING THE FECKING COUNTRY.

    Sorry, I just cannot be bothered with this tiptoing around any more. The idea that not being able to use the pound or stay in the EU – something that plenty of countries seem to manage just fine – is remotely threatening enough to make anyone reconsider is insulting and infuriating. The pound and the EU are window dressing. While WM’s throwing a paddy about Big Bad Alex Salmond making “demands” about the pound, the Coalition is KILLING people through the DWP, destroying their homes to make room for fracking sites, and refusing aid from the EU on multiple occassions to save face.

    Yeah, no, sorry. EU and pound are chaff, distractions from what’s actually important.

  301. Marcia says:

    An article by Iain MacWhirter

    http://tinyurl.com/otx3cua

  302. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “The wee icons at the top of the comment box which used to let me italicize words has disappeared. How do I do it now?”

    Um, follow the instructions right above the comments box..?

  303. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “If you really want an answer to your question then it’s “the Scottish public finances, in the hypothetical situation that we can no longer pay our debts”.”

    There, that wasn’t so hard, was it?

    Scotland is up to its ears in natural resources. We will never need bailed out by a country that’s ten times as indebted as we could ever conceivably be in our worst nightmares.

  304. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @kininvie says:
    Of course, no respectable cybernat would vote more than once, but the other side’s votes are obviously exaggerated.

    The First Rule of Cybernattin’ – Vote Early and Vote Often

    🙂

  305. bunter says:

    Would expect lots of dodgy polls commissioned by the naws coming our way soon to generate lots of ”blow to Salmond” headlines.

    Might be time soon to think up some interesting questions of our own for a crowdfunded Panelbase poll, if only to guage the actual effect of the last week of the gang of three bullying Scotland.

  306. Jeannie says:

    @Rev Stu

    Ahem 🙂

  307. James123 says:

    Just watched the Sky News report on today’s events, the language was extraordinary.

    Apparently today AS was attempting “to rebuild the Yes campaign”, who knocked it down, must’ve missed that.

    Apparently his speech was “vicious”, really, how?

    And lastly the people of Edinburgh simply don’t know who to believe, what they’re basing that on I don’t know.

  308. Hetty says:

    Just watched a couple of snippets of tonights ch4 news. The misrepresentation of the facts re the pound and and their attitude in equating the Scottish government’s stance with the westminsters fear campaign is truly disgraceful. Oh and err, their man said that it could even mean that people in ‘other parts of the uk might want a say in this’. Do they know something we don’t? Who knows what the bt lot have up their dirty nasty sleeves when their present scaremongering is debunked.

  309. Linda's back says:

    Croompenstein says at 9.28

    Read the Nobel prize winning economist Sir James Mirrlees on why currency union is best

    http://archive.is/kCTAf

  310. jingly jangly says:

    Bute

  311. john king says:

    Im having that cindie

  312. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @James123 says:
    And lastly the people of Edinburgh simply don’t know who to believe, what they’re basing that on I don’t know.

    Tough call.

    Do I believe the First Minister of Scotland who has led a successful administration for 7 years, who has unprecedented Opinion Poll ratings, who won a landslide victory and an overall majority in 2011, and who I have actually met and spoken to a couple of times, or do I believe threatening George (champagne-on-the-Rothchild-yacht-in-Corfu-harbour-with-chum-Mandelson) Osborne?

    I’ll think about it for a millisecond …

  313. Hetty says:

    Taranaich

    You are spot regards the attempted distraction by bt so that the YES campaign’s positive and informative message re NHS, education etc is swamped by the negative scaremongering being wielded by westmonster. The media are the crims in this as well, as we all are fully aware of here.

  314. If I see one more newspaper article like this

    Independent Scotland would rely on England ‘to keep lights on’

    I swear it will be me who needs the anger management

    Tomorrow I am fully expecting to wake up too this headline

    Scots unable to wipe their ar^e with out help from the english

  315. cynicalHighlander says:

    Re refreshing in the tab box there a saltire and everything refreshes normally earlier it showed a V on a ‘red'(I think) background and refreshing was a no go.

  316. Linda's back says:

    you have to watch lord digby jones on bbc papers review at 10.30

  317. Edward says:

    ITV in England ‘The Agenda’ programme discussing Scotland
    with Danny Alexander, Germaine Greer, Amanda Platell and Clive Anderson.
    What can I say, just as well its not shown in Scotland as you would be all ordering new TV’s to replace the ones thrown out the window.
    The amount of ignorance was in spades!
    Danny Alexander even talking as if he wasn’t Scottish!

  318. Peter says:

    It’s very simple. the racists who’ve been infesting every comment thread, writing their nazi inspired headlines and imagery hate Scotland. They can’t stand it that we still exist.

    How many comments have there been about Scotland not being a founding partner in the UK. The Treaty of Union is just another bit of bogroll, we don’t own anything and everything we do claim will be occupied by the british army.

    These people are sick. Unfortunately they run my country, elect it’s government and are given free rein to intimidate the electorate and scare, smear and slander them into a no vote.

    Can somebody get a straight answer out of any ("Quizmaster" - Ed) as to how Scots can be enjoying, “the best of both Worlds,” when Scotland doesn’t even exist?

    Some people compare Scotland in the union to an abused spouse. More like Josef Fritz’s daughter chained in a cellar, abused by somebody who would claim to love her.

  319. HandandShrimp says:

    There is much made of the fact that in an independent Scotland the financial liabilities of the Scottish banks and institutions would be 12 times our GDP. The UK position is that the total financial sector liabilities are 4.8 times the UK GDP. In short, if there is total financial melt down we are screwed either way. The UK could not even afford to repeat the partial bailout of 2008.

    As an aside it is often mentioned by those with enough history to poke themselves in the eye that Scotland was broke due to the Darien scheme. This is only partially true. There was no national debt or central bank in Scotland. Such concepts were very new. Paper fiat currency yet to be visited upon us. The Darien scheme sorely tested the finances of private individuals and personal debt was near 100% of GDP. GDP of approx 1m people in what was still mostly an agrarian economy was not a big number.

    The Union saved us though and today we live in a country where personal debt is only 100% of GDP and Government debt is an additional 87% of GDP and the financial sector liabilities are about 480% of GDP….didn’t we do well? If late 17th century Scotland was a house of cards I guess we are now living in a house of TNT impregnated breeze block.

  320. X_Sticks says:

    Taranaich says:

    “YET AGAIN we’re getting told what the “important issues” are, while the things which truly affect Scots like Trident, welfare, jobs, health and education are left to the sideline”

    Yes, Taranaich, all part of the No campaign to stifle any meaningful debate and to try and set their agenda away from the sovereigenty of our country. Nail, head, hit.

  321. Edward says:

    The classic from Germaine Greer on ITV’s ‘The Agenda’ was ‘The Scottish pound is not legal tender in England, nor is it in Scotland, its not even Sterling’ ………cue my imitation of a goldfish that’s found itself outside the goldfish bowl

  322. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    @Edward says:
    ITV in England ‘The Agenda’ programme discussing Scotland
    The amount of ignorance was in spades!
    Danny Alexander even talking as if he wasn’t Scottish!

    Danny isn’t stupid.
    Danny can see YES coming.
    Danny has a Plan B.
    Danny’s Plan B: Get a safe Tory seat in England (if instant-ermine in 2016 isn’t available)

  323. HandandShrimp says:

    Danny is recreating himself as a Tory. I think a shire beckons

  324. Appleby says:

    @Calgacus MacAndrews

    Would love to see that international opinion more. Especially in the aftermath.

  325. X_Sticks says:

    HandandShrimp says:

    “Danny is recreating himself as a Tory.”

    I think he’s always been a tory – he just couldn’t get elected as one.

  326. Thepnr says:

    @Peter

    I understand how you feel. Though don’t concern yourself. We have right on our side and we will will. Despite the monster.

  327. Taranaich says:

    @Hetty: Yes, Taranaich, all part of the No campaign to stifle any meaningful debate and to try and set their agenda away from the sovereigenty of our country. Nail, head, hit.

    @X_Sticks: Yes, Taranaich, all part of the No campaign to stifle any meaningful debate and to try and set their agenda away from the sovereigenty of our country. Nail, head, hit.

    Which is why we need to wrangle the debate away from this pound/EU nonsense.

    @Edward: The classic from Germaine Greer on ITV’s ‘The Agenda’ was ‘The Scottish pound is not legal tender in England, nor is it in Scotland, its not even Sterling’ ………cue my imitation of a goldfish that’s found itself outside the goldfish bowl

    Next week on The Agenda, we discuss Palestine with Eli Yishai, Bill Maher, Alan Dershowitz, and Gal Gadot! The week after, we discuss equal marriage with Lord Hylton, Orson Scott Card, Dr. Laura Schlesinger, and that eejit from Duck Dynasty! And finally, we have a natter about immigration with Nigel Farage, Katie Hopkins, Peter Hitchens and Nigel Griffin!

  328. Tîm Criced i Gymru says:

    Regarding Billy Connolly’s comments, i.e. not going to vote , but also reading between the lines of some of his accompanying comments…I think, for what it’s worth, he looks a pretty definite ‘No’ but doesn’t have the stomach to do anything about it. Suits Alba fine if a few hundred thousand like him don’t bother going out to vote either – an apathetic ‘No’ movement, hope it’s growing – just the ticket for 19.09.2014 celebrations. Keep moving onwards and upwards!

  329. By the way…For anyone who is worried about Barrusos comments about the EU (not that there are many worried peeps here), the Catalans have already done their homework on that little issue by seeking advice from a French expert on EU affairs.

    http://www.catalannewsagency.com/politics/item/french-study-backs-eu-membership-of-independent-catalonia-and-scotland

    In addition, Gouning highlights the legal argument resulting from article 50 of the EU Treaty, which deals with the withdrawal of a Member State from the Union. The Treaties clearly say that the withdrawal is not automatic and has to be negotiated, specifically regarding the relationship of the State with the EU. Therefore, automatically excluding Catalonia or Scotland, without a negotiation, would be quite problematic regarding Article 50.

    Article 50 forbids the expulsion of territories within the EU without negotiation. Even the predecessor of the EU, the EC, had to negotiate with Greenland over its withdrawal from the treaties in the 80s

    Better Together have only one card left to play and they know it. The Currency card. The problem for them is this; It’s a small, irrelevant card in the grand scheme of things. The more the play it, the more it bores people to death. The more I see Alistair Darling glow bright red on over it on youtube, the more I think he is an utter twonk roid raging his way through the news rooms of Scotland.

  330. scottish_skier says:

    WTF! You are really living in a dreamland.

    I didn’t think it was possible for someone to post online in such a way as the reader could actually hear the shrillness in their voice.

    I’ve been proved wrong.

  331. Croompenstein says:

    @Lindas back@10:23 – I was quoting and answering our learned friend Alec but thanks for the link.

  332. Hammett96 says:

    Quite interesting watching the video of Darling at the top of the page, while talking about the economic consequences of a currency union he tried really really hard to say that it was not going to happen, he tried to get it out about 3 times and ended up saying they don’t want to sign up to one.

  333. Alec says:

    @Sandra Bothwell – “Independent Scotland would rely on England ‘to keep lights on’”

    Unfortunately, at present, this is the anticipated position. Long Gannet and Torness are both due to close relatively soon, which together provide something like 50% of Scottish power demand. The rate of renewables development and new planned conventional fuel sources isn’t yet anywhere near sufficient to replace these.

    This doesn’t necessarily mean Scotland would become a net importer. There is still time to build new gas stations and there could be extensions to Long Gannet, although these would be expensive.

    Either way, Scotland isn’t going to be a major power exporter for a period of time, and could be a net importer.

  334. Alec says:

    @kinnivie – re your 9.24pm post yesterday.

    “So the argument is that it works at the moment for both nations. Fine. Now, suppose Scotland votes Yes, why should it not continue to work?”

    Because it would be different. This is the point people don’t get. It works now, because taxes are remitted to the centre, spending is allocated centrally, and tax rates are national, other than local level taxes.

    If Scotland is a net contributor, some of Scotland’s wealth if effectively being transferred to poorer regions as a capital transfer, similarly for other regions like London and the south east. Once you remove these, you have a defective currency union.

    Again, I’ll repeat what I’ve said several times on here, without rebuttal; the has not been a long term successful currency union ever, in the history of the world, that has not been accompanied by political and fiscal union. You may say that a ‘long term’ union isn’t what Scotland needs, which is perfectly true, but if you are only looking for a transitional arrangement, that isn’t a currency union and it is unrealistic to expect an independent state to accept the inherent instability that this brings.

    On the bank bailouts, your link wasn’t all you think it is. Central banks bail out banks that have licenses to operate in there jurisdiction. The Fed will bail out foreign owned banks operations in the US, not in the foreign jurisdiction, so Scotland wouldn’t get bailouts. A voluntary bailout might happen, as per Ireland, but remember that this was a loan that has to be repaid.

  335. Mosstrooper says:

    @ alec

    I think it would lend more gravitas to your discussion if, when talking of places, of which you profess to have knowledge, if you got the spelling of their names correct.

    Longannet, not Long Gannet.

  336. X_Sticks says:

    O/T

    Anyone with an SNP/Yes ear out there – Lord Digby-Jones on the BBC 24 Papers review last night mentioned that the next card westminster intends to play is the decommissioning costs for the oil industry. It might be useful knowledge and someone needs to research this to have answers at the ready. Forewarned is forarmed and all that…

  337. Mosstrooper says:

    Oh yes, and their when referring to possession and there when indicating a place in space or time.

    Just sayin’ like

  338. @Alec

    Again, I’ll repeat what I’ve said several times on here, without rebuttal; the has not been a long term successful currency union ever, in the history of the world, that has not been accompanied by political and fiscal union. You may say that a ‘long term’ union isn’t what Scotland needs, which is perfectly true, but if you are only looking for a transitional arrangement, that isn’t a currency union and it is unrealistic to expect an independent state to accept the inherent instability that this brings.

    Not true at all. The Belgium–Luxembourg Economic Union lasted as a monetary and economic union from the 1920s until both countries adopted the Euro at the turn of the millennium. Please for the love of god, don’t peddle that lie.

  339. @Alec

    On the bank bailouts, your link wasn’t all you think it is. Central banks bail out banks that have licenses to operate in there jurisdiction. The Fed will bail out foreign owned banks operations in the US, not in the foreign jurisdiction, so Scotland wouldn’t get bailouts. A voluntary bailout might happen, as per Ireland, but remember that this was a loan that has to be repaid.

    You are aware that the Scottish banks operate from London, correct? The investment banking sections of all major British banks are based there. Regardless of whether Scotland uses the pound or not, the English government would still have to bail out RBS If they happen to repeat the same mistakes again.

    At the end of the day, this whole currency “debate” becomes a whopping huge red herring when it turns to talk of bailouts. The world is interconnected and if a “foreign” bank has its base of operations at the heart of your financial centre, you will bail it out. No ifs, no buts. Just ask the Fed.

  340. Alec says:

    On the currency union, the central point on this is really about whether Scotland has a right to a sterling union, and if it does but is refused, what rights would that give to Scotland to withdraw cooperation in other areas. This is where some of us have a real problem with the SNP position.

    Salmond’s case hinges on two factors – firstly, that sterling is an asset that must be shared, and secondly that not sharing a currency will inflict serious damage on both sides, so is illogical.

    Dealing with the second first, it seems pretty clear that the UK doesn’t believe the damage would be that severe, or at least less severe than that from a poorly designed currency union. There isn’t anything the SNP can do about this, if the UK is happy to take the hit, so that argument is null.

    The first point is the real nub of the issue. One thought experiment that demonstrates the weakness of the SNP position would be to imagine that the UK said to Scotland ‘yes, feel free – you can have sterling. But we don’t want it’. All the foreign reserves could be split, you could get a payment representing 10% of the value of the BoE building, we could amputate Carney’s left leg just below the knee so Scotland has 10% of him – whatever can be split, gets split, and you have sterling – not a share, but all of it.

    The UK then doesn’t have a currency. May be we just set up a currency that we might call sterling, set the exchange rate at exactly the old rate, call pounds pounds, and have the same design as before, keep all financing structures as they were, operate the BoE as before, etc.

    So you have your sterling, and we have ours. The world would refer to UK sterling as ‘sterling’ and the Scottish currency as the ‘Scottish pound’, and the two currencies would float around against each other, as independent currencies.

    There would be absolutely no come back from Salmond, as the UK would not have shared the currency with him, but given him the whole thing, and then set up their own, new but the same currency. Absolutely nothing Salmond could do about the actions of an independent country.

    This is all perfectly possible – there are multiple examples of countries setting up new currencies and changing old ones. This is why it’s completely wrong to claim that the currency is some kind of divisible asset that demands sharing. It’s entirely a system, a set of policies and protocols and market operations.

  341. Dick Gaughan says:

    @Alec

    Shite, shite, shite and more shite.

    Absolutely seriously, I don’t understand why you don’t just cut your wrists now and have done with it. The relentless pessimism and “wur aa doomed” of your view of Scotland is symptomatic of a deep depression and self-loathing being projected onto an entire nation under the pretext of “critical argument”.

    The point you carefully avoid is that the referendum we are discussing here makes no mention of currencies, defaults, EU membership or any of the other red herrings you keep using to deflect the discussion away from the simple, straightforward YES/NO question being put.

    Neither you nor anyone else has any absolute guarantees of what happens after it – that will be for the Scottish people to determine. You can speculate until hell freezes but it’ll remain your fear/nightmare/opinion until after 18th September. You know what they say about opinions and arseholes. And most of them stink.

    The only intelligent conclusion from your posts is that you are either a complete cynic for whom hope and optimism are anathema, or that you have no real interest in the debate and are simply carrying out orders.

  342. @Alec

    Another point I’ll contend here. You say no one has offered you a rebuttal on your claims about the Union. I’ve seen the rebuttals, you dodge them like you are in bullet time.

  343. X_Sticks says:

    Dissapearing posts?

  344. Alec says:

    @Thoughtsofascot – the Belgium–Luxembourg Economic Union wasn’t a currency union. They had separate currencies, which they set at parity. This is not what is proposed by the SNP.

    Funnily enough, the BLEU arose out of the collapse of another failed attempt at currency unions, the Latin Monetary Union (Belgium, France, Switzerland, Italy and later Greece). This set national currencies at the same rate. It collapsed in 1926 with slumps in France and Belgium. Belgium then pegged it’s currency to sterling, but was revalued in 1935, 1940, 1944, 1946, 1949, and 1982.

    It’s not a very relevant model to the UK situation, and isn’t in any way comparable to what the SNP are proposing.

    Re bank bailouts – I too think this is something of a red herring. We really shouldn’t be facing that kind of mess ever again, but then you never can tell.

    Your point about RBS in London is absolutely valid, and precisely what I said. London would underwrite any bank operations within it’s territory, as this is what RBS London would be licensed for. They would not be the lender of last resort for RBS operations in Scotland, or anywhere else. That’s what I said.

    @Mosstrooper – first they come for your grammar, and then they come for you…..

    How dull. I do hope you’ve been all the way up thread and pointed out the errors in all those pro independence posts as well?

    Otherwise people might think you’re just being a bit childish?

  345. Alec says:

    @Dick Gaughan – “Absolutely seriously, I don’t understand why you don’t just cut your wrists now and have done with it. The relentless pessimism and “wur aa doomed” of your view of Scotland is symptomatic of a deep depression and self-loathing being projected onto an entire nation under the pretext of “critical argument”.”

    I’m sure you’re a nice bloke, but you do come across here as remarkably stupid.

    At no point have I ever said Scotland is doomed, or independence would be a nightmare. I actually think a well constructed independent Scotland would do OK. The SNP is not offering a well constructed Scotland, as they are too frightened and lacking in confidence to actually go for proper independence.

    There are dozens of small countries out there, happy, prosperous, content. I also think the small country mentality would have served Scotland far better in the 1980s when the oil started to flow – I’m convinced a Scotland in charge of it’s own destiny would not have been anywhere near as wasteful and profligate with the proceeds.

    That won’t stop me picking out the gross inadequacies in what the SNP are trying to portray as fact.

    @Thoughtsofascot – “Another point I’ll contend here. You say no one has offered you a rebuttal on your claims about the Union. I’ve seen the rebuttals, you dodge them like you are in bullet time.”

    Yes – I should apologise for that. I don’t have the time to read every post and tend to dip in and then out. There may have been posts I missed, so I should have made it clear that I haven’t seen any rebuttals.

    I did look for some after one post, but my original post and several others than went missing, so perhaps there were relevant points made.

  346. Sky News – just before the 8am main bulletin this morning, had a good go at Salmond and independence – no balance, other than Eamonn the tubby controller saying Salmond is an adept politician.

    The blonde airheads on the sofa were allowed to parrot all the disinformation and propaganda they have been fed by Westminster. But then, that’s called acceptable banter.It does not require an opposing opinion.

    Once again, debt ridden England was depicted as the strong, wealthy, generous nation, Scotland the silly little separatist.

  347. Mosstrooper says:

    OK, no officially tired of Alec and the currency blethers. I’m away out to deliver YES newspapers and when I come back sittin’ doon tae watch paint dry.

  348. Mosstrooper says:

    Ach that bored should have been noo an no a no

  349. @Alec

    “The SNP are not offering a well constructed Scotland.”

    It doesn’t matter what you think because the Scottish Government is offering the first and only fully democratic plebiscite on self-governance presented to the people of Scotland – over 300 years late.

    It is called the democratic process.

    And if it is won, our elected representatives will do their best endeavours to negotiate the best form of it they can bring back to our Parliament to debate and place before the people for acceptance or rejection.

    No country in the world has the mythological independence you are keen not to define. All nation states depend on one or a few other states for their economy and trade to prosper.

    The key element of the SNP’s policy is maximum self-governance possible leading to maximum empowerment for the people of Scotland, governance that does not break the social ties with the people of England.

    But we are faced with a dominant nation saying NO to everything including accepting a Yes vote. They, like you, do not like genuine democracy either exercised or enjoyed.

    A large proportion of the population of the United Kingdom, Scotland, is designated enemies of the state.

  350. @Alec

    For all intents and purposes, the Belgium-Luxembourg economic union was extraordinarily similar, if not the same. The currencies were different in name only after the Second world war. 1 franc in Belgium = 1 franc in Luxembourg and both currencies could be used interchangeably. Both countries were relatively stable in the post war years so there was never any need for the fundamentals that underpinned monetary union to be tested. Unless you propose that Scotland and England are financial basketcase economies ready to implode, the same assumption holds here too.

    The Latin Monetary Union was a whole other kettle of fish, and failed for many reasons, but largely because Greece and Italy liked to print money and undermined the very fundamentals of the currency union. Obviously that would be a terrible comparison to make with (a post Yes vote) England and Scotland, though. Neither of our countries are financial basketcases like those two were(and still are).

    The rule of thumb that we can deduce from Europe is that currency union between 2 nations of a comparable culture = good. Currency union between many nations of radically different cultures = bad (I mean come on! Who seriously thought it would be a good idea to link up Germany with Greece!?).

  351. And yeah, that “cut your wrists” comment was totally uncalled for.

    Please take a lesson from Mr Darling in how NOT to debate. When you lose your cool, you lose the game.

  352. scottish_skier says:

    Because it would be different. This is the point people don’t get. It works now [currency union], because taxes are remitted to the centre, spending is allocated centrally, and tax rates are national, other than local level taxes.

    So, to be clear Alec, what you are saying is that Devo Max / tax and welfare devolved to Scotland is a no goer?

  353. Directed at Dick, not Alec, of course

  354. Dick Gaughan says:

    @Alec
    The SNP

    Mindset #1

    I am not a member of the SNP, I am not even a supporter of the SNP and while I am deeply grateful to them for having brought us this far and have a great deal of respect for many of them, in an independent Scotland I will judge their views in exactly the same way as I will judge anyone else’s.

  355. Dick Gaughan says:

    thoughtsofascot says:
    And yeah, that “cut your wrists” comment was totally uncalled for.

    You’re absolutely correct.

    Would “jump off the Forth Bridge” be less offensive to you?

  356. dmw42 says:

    Okay, two thoughts here.

    On ‘bank bailouts’, remember that in the Iceland bank scenario (where Alistair Darling ‘bailed out’ UK depositors by eight times more than he was required to, and where UK Financial Services raised its guarantee level from £35,000 to £50,000 on the very day that Landsbanki went into default, a move which considerably increased the cost to British banks and building societies), European Free Trade Association (EFTA) ruled pan-European depositor protection rules do not require nation states in the throes of a financial crisis to honour fully the overseas liabilities of their failed commercial banks.

    The rules governing cross-border banking in Europe have been modified and EU member states are today required to guarantee deposits of up to €100,000 (£85,000) for each saver. EU deposit guarantee scheme, liable where banks are ‘licensed’ (RBS is licensed in UK, RBS International is licensed in Channel Islands and IoM).

    Secondly, the UK Governments ‘reticence’ has absolutely nothing to do with ‘bailouts’, but EVERYTHING to do with balance sheet ratios that would be imposed by an ‘independent’ Bank of England,i.e. Debt/Equity ratios, Debt to Equity ratios, Capital structures ratios, Activity ratio to name but a few.

    Remember number four of Gordon Brown’s ‘five tests’?
    What impact would entry into EMU have on the competitive position of the UK’s financial services industry, particularly the City’s wholesale markets?

    Now you have a look at some of these ratios I’ve mentioned above and you decide whether any UK government could meet these tests, and accommodate its financial services industry and City of London markets.

    Nuff said, move on, let’s discuss democracy.

  357. @Dick

    Again man, keep a lid on that kind of thing. I’m sure Captain Blinky thinks that thought every time he sees Salmond. When you debate someone on the other side, Be courteous and remember that there are lurkers watching. The Yes campaign won’t win if we act as Better Together do and tell people who disagree with independence to go kill themselves, now will it?

  358. Stevie says:

    Speaking of video capture software – what software do you use Rev ?

    There are so many and I don’t know which to choose.

  359. HandandShrimp says:

    Alec

    At the end of the day we are voting for self determination on the 18th of September. The Scottish Government White Paper is an example of how that self determination might work. It is a vision but it is not the only vision. In May 2016 we will elect the first independent Scottish Government for 300 years. It might be Labour, it more likely will be a Coalition of some sort, SNP, Greens, SSP or even heaven forfend a Labour SNP Coalition. What is certain is that things will develop and change. The White Paper states that the Scottish navy will be 4 frigates and two OPBs plus patrol craft and minesweepers. The March 2016 Government might decide that is too much or too little. It doesn’t really matter. This is no different from not knowing what a new 2015 UK Government will do.

    I am not an SNP member. I think they are wrong regarding NATO and I don’t care if we are in the EU or not. However, I will vote Yes because I believe that is the first fundamental building block. If we secure a Yes vote I expect the other parties to immediately switch tack and produce their own alternatives for an independent Scotland. If true to what they are saying now then all others will argue for an independent currency rather than a currency union. That is absolutely fine. Choice is great. We do not have that at the moment because the other main parties are trying to prevent independence but picking holes in the SNP vision is not an argument against independence. It is an argument regarding who we should choose in 2016.

  360. Dorothy Devine says:

    Actually , considering how bland and boring with a droning ,unexciting delivery Flipper is normally , I think he is slightly improved by getting his dander up to maniacal level.
    I look forward to him developing many and various tics prior to the referendum.
    You do have to feel sorry for a Labour” grande dame” being feted by the Conservative party – can’t do much for your street cred.

  361. Dick Gaughan says:

    thoughtsofascot says:
    The Yes campaign won’t win if we act as Better Together do and tell people who disagree with independence to go kill themselves, now will it?

    Taking literally a comment like my “cut your wrists” is seriously idiotic, pal.

    I simply get tired of wading through screeds of pseudo-intellectual time-wasting waffle posted for no reason other than to deflect, divert and confuse the debate.

    I’m a working class Leither – we tend not to be too tolerant towards people spouting shite dressed up in robes of “polite discourse”. I have too many other demands on my time.

    Maybe they do it differently where you live.

  362. @Thoughtsofascot”

    Gaughin’s opening remark is acceptable in the context it was given, a repudiation of the Scotsman’s age-old false fear of inevitability, Armageddon awaits, writ large in the cliche, “Wur aw’ doomed!”

    It is no different from the Islamic, “It is written,” stated to every disaster personal or national.

    B honest with yourself. It’s sadly true that Scots carry around a depressed outlook of their country. It can be summed up thus:

    “Decisions are things other people make somewhere else.”

    If we allow ourselves to accept that situation, to believe it, to be cowed and subservient, (as Osborne and his cronies want us to) then yes, we may as well cut our wrists, or drown our sorrows and fall into the gutter.

    The entire point of a plebscite offering an opportunity to grasp greater democratic powers is to throw off that depressive outlook from our shoulders – forever.

    Carpe diem!

  363. chalks says:

    Decomissioning costs,I think are in the main funded from tax breaks to the companies involved.

    I could be wrong but I also think the EU supplies money for this as well?

  364. Alec says:

    @Scottish_skier – “So, to be clear Alec, what you are saying is that Devo Max / tax and welfare devolved to Scotland is a no goer?”

    Not at all. We don’t really have a definition of devo max to discuss, which is a real shame, but I support the idea of as much power devolved from the centre as possible.

    There are problems with varying tax and welfare rates and entitlements though. In effect, these can operate as the capital transfers, and operate naturally to take money from wealthy regions and transfer to less well off areas.

    It’s fascinating to see the response to the crisis within the Eurozone, which has been to press for closer fiscal unity. In due course, if the Euro is to survive, then taxes will become more standarised within the EZ. In a case of Scotland under a currency union or devo max, it’s difficult to see how a Corporation Tax reduction could work. The intention of this is clear, but obviously this has implications for the rest of the union.

    The other point to make I guess is that the SNP have already got an option for limited variance in income tax, but choose not to use this. May be this is the model. Westminster sets the central rate, with regions allowed a tolerance either side.

    Benefits I see as a real problem. Creating a differential between two parts of a union with free movement automatically sets up the prospects for migration to the best area. If a devo max Scotland wanted to improve pension rights, this would create an incentive for retirees to migrate north, which already happens to an extent.

    To be honest, I really don’t know what the answer is. We’ve already got really big divergences in wage rates and living costs throughout the UK, and flat rate benefits don’t make sense in this context, but I don’t know how an alternative could be worked.

    Overall though, I would prefer to see a system where all UK regions have much greater control of their tax and spend powers, with parliaments/assemblies for every region, and a proportion of tax remitted to Westminster which would retain competencies for defence, foreign affairs, environmental polices, and strategic planning (or something like that). I’d even like to see a requirement for acts of war to be approved by all 4 national parliaments as part of a complete devolution of authority, and in such a context, I think Scotland, and the rest of the UK, could actually do rather well.

  365. @Thoughtsofascot”

    Gaughin’s opening remark is acceptable in the context it was given, a repudiation of the Scotsman’s age-old false fear of inevitability, Armageddon awaits, writ large in the cliche, “Wur aw’ doomed!”

    It is no different from the Islamic, “It is written,” appended to every disaster personal or national.

    B honest with yourself. It’s sadly true that Scots carry around a depressed outlook of their country. It can be summed up thus:

    “Decisions are things other people make somewhere else.”

    If we allow ourselves to accept that situation, to believe it, to be cowed and subservient, (as Osborne and his cronies want us to) then yes, we may as well cut our wrists, or drown our sorrows and fall into the gutter.

    The entire point of a plebscite offering an opportunity to grasp greater democratic powers is to throw off that depressive outlook from our shoulders – forever.

    Carpe diem!

  366. @Alec

    The SNP [has] a limited variance in income tax but choose not to use it.”

    Well, yes, by limited you mean VERY small, a token gesture from Westminster, and all the money will go to the UK Treasury to squander on England’s territorial ambitions.

    For the United Kingdom read “England.”

    the separate nation of Scotland has a grossly outdated treaty with England with which we are now in a state of renegotiating.

    No point in pretending it isn’t happening, or never will have any outcome.

  367. Sandy Milne says:

    I really do sympathise with Alistair Darling the sheer frustration he must be feeling for all the goading he has embarked upon he’s failed to extract the reactions he desires online. I don’t necessarily see any over praising of Alex Salmond or name calling to Danny Alexander or deriding Alistair Carmichael too much. Everything has been reasonable and courteous from the YES campaign and his attempts to drag it down into the gutter keep failing at every attempt.

  368. Alastair Darling argues for the status quo.

    His mind and conscience are blind to the realities the artificial limitations place upon the people of Scotland that limit their hopes and ambitions.

    Then again, it’s a natural outcome of the lifestyle and outlook he enjoys issuing from his place in society, his earnings, and his career opportunities.

    He’s convinced he lives in the best of all possible worlds.

  369. @Dick

    Surely you can appreciate though that there are other people reading this thread who may interpret it that way. You ain’t gonna win them over by saying things like that, regardless of your intentions.

    @Grouse Beater

    There will always be naysayers. But dismissing them off hand as a lost cause by telling them they might as well go cut their wrists seems pretty crazy. Offer rebuttals to any misinformation, otherwise that misinformation goes unchallenged, as tedious as it may be. They may change their views in time, they may not. However as long as there are people questioning what they say, there yet remains a moment for an epiphany. A wall can’t hold forever.

  370. Murray McCallum says:

    In the real world of course the EU / Eurozone is vastly different from the UK.

    The tax rates within the EU / Eurozone continue to vary widely.

    Let’s try to stick with the facts rather than dream.

  371. Other than that, I do agree, Carpe Diem!

  372. @thoughtsofascot

    “A wall can’t hold forever.”

    Nor sandbags a flood.

  373. MochaChoca says:

    Perhaps the whole currency union idea has been a smokescreen.

    Yes, in financial terms it’s clearly the best of the options, but once the fiscal commission put it forward as plan A the YES side may have seen it as being politically impossible (how could the BritNats parties ever cede any such power!!) but how to make the best capital out of it?

    I’d suspect every YES supporter (leadership included) would maybe grudgingly support a currency union for ‘the greater good’, but ideally WANT Holyrood to be more fully in charge of Scotland’s affairs.

    Who knows how the currency issue will pan out, but it certainly seems these latest developments are tipping folk towards YES, which of course is of paramount priority. Master strategy or unexpected windfall? Who knows?

  374. Dick Gaughan says:

    thoughtsofascot says:
    Surely you can appreciate though that there are other people reading this thread who may interpret it that way. You ain’t gonna win them over by saying things like that, regardless of your intentions.

    You’re on a hiding to nothing here.

    I have no idea how many “Don’t knows” I’ve helped become “Yes” voters in the past two years, but I’d be astonished if it were less than 100. The day someone comes up to me and says “I was a Don’t Know but I’m going to vote No because I read a comment of yours on the Internet” then I will cheerfully wear sackcloth and ashes. Until then, you campaign in your way and I’ll do it in mine.

    Oh, and by the way, could you do me a favour and make any further comments to me just a wee bit more patronising?

  375. scottish_skier says:

    We don’t really have a definition of devo max to discuss

    Aye. Nail on head. That’s very clear to the electorate.

    And I’d imagine after the recent fun and games there will be very few left in Scotland that think such a thing will ever happen if Scotland votes No. Polls already had very few hopeful of this / believing it would happen. George just wrote it off completely just through attitude alone, never mind the issue I raised.

  376. scottish_skier says:

    Scots electorate having been holding out the devo max olive branch since ~2007.

    Only a matter of time before they finally gave up on it. Even the message sent in 2011 was ignored and that was one hell of a message.

    Anecdotal, but all the devo maxers I know have now moved to yes in response to the currency thing.

  377. The Rough Bounds says:

    Yes, I know this is widely off topic, but does anybody out there remember the lady (I’m tempted to call her the wee wifie) that used to stand near the Heilan’ Man’s umbrella (Central Station bridge. Glasgow) in the 1950’s selling the Scots Independent newspaper?

    She used to stand there, Saturday after Saturday, calling ”Scots independent: thruppence” and selling them to anyone interested enough.

    I was in Glasgow with a bunch of schoolpals and noted how they were laughing at her. I went over and bought my very first Scots Independent, and that was me launched on the river of Scotland’s independence struggle. I have never once looked back.

    What a heroine that woman was. Does anybody know what her name was?

  378. Luke says:

    The whole question around rhetoric is very interesting. Speaking as an undecided, and likely to remain that way until a clear advantage is to be gained from picking one or other cause in advance. There’s a lot of talk on both sides of “Bullying” and similarly emotional appeals but very little concrete-that is to say, not speculative- arguments as to how either state is going to be demonstrably better and in the case of the Yes Campaign, achievable. Of course there’s a lot of people on here who have decided that it is-but it’s a leap of faith, it’s not something which is bankable or even a near certainty unless both sides come to some sort of arrangement.

    What this past week has proven is that for Independence to work the divorce needs to be amicable, something which the SNP have tried their best to obscure or ignore. There’s a lot of appeals to fairness and that sort of thing, the moral obligation, both in terms of separation and in sharing the debt and currency.

    But this is politics, and in the event Independence occurs Scotland will become a competitor with England, in which case it will be in the interests of the English Population for Westminster to treat Scotland as a rival in certain circumstances. Politics is a field which is not run on aspiration or moral imperative (more’s the pity) but a pragmatic assessment can only lead to the conclusion that it makes no political sense for a richer and more populous country to cede ground to it’s neighbour and co-competitor simply out of good will. Britain has done this in some circumstances before, but whether rUK will? If the Yes Campaign will insist on casting England, a place of split identities, as this amorphous pantomime villain then all the more reason to expect it to act that way and for it’s populace to agitate for it to do so. If Scotland is prepared to say that it basically has the sovereign right to insist on various things, a very much philosophical argument, then England has the right to do the same, including being, for want of a better word, a dick about letting Scotland go.

    Which is why I think the whole nationalism element is a red herring in all honesty.The nation’s people don’t run it’s country. They didn’t in 1707, they don’t now. England didn’t force anything on anyone back then, anymore than Scotland assented to it-some politicians on both sides agreed to it, acting in what they perceived to be their interest of their respective countries. I can’t emphasis how brilliant it is that now Scotland’s democratic population can choose to vote how they want to sit in the Union, but once that vote is cast Scottish People aren’t going to run the country whatever the result, unless a substantially different political order is established, one which would be fundamentally not in the interests of those who hold the power to grant it.

    Most Scottish People are just like English People, ruled by a political elite who do not know, understand or represent their interests. However proud of one’s heritage one might be, it dose not affect this reality, which is the reality of how power is maintained and distributed. Salmond has tapped into Nationalism for a reason though-to trade off people’s goodwill as a vehicle for his party to enjoy support for that political reality.

    Nationalism is a cause, an ideology, but it isn’t an argument, because at present there isn’t an effective means of harnessing it or translating it into viable government. It’s better to consider the reality of the new settlement rather than the emotional appeal, because ultimately being proud to be Independent isn’t going to put bread on the table, create an economy, secure your job, establish a working health care system, plead you political case next to competing powers, protect you from enemies. The only thing that will do those things is concerted infrastructure and planning to that end, and Salmonds blind insistence that everything will just work out ok is never going to convince undecided folk like me. The case for Independence needs to be made on the basis that fundamentally things will be demonstrably better because of a new context which allows for such things, not some insubstantial promise that everyone will simply be happier because they are somehow more ideologically “free”.

  379. @mochachoca

    Whatever currency policy were to be advocated we can be sure Westminster would resist it and belittle it.

    The best policy is the one that benefits both nations.

    We are appealing to the good sense and goodwill of the English, all of them, not only businessmen. After all, we are in dispute with their government, as indeed, ordinary English are too, its priorities that are so obviously anti-democratic, out-of-touch, and oblivious of Scotland’s needs and rights in the modern age.

    The SNP’s policy is to acquire a partnership – risky when the rUK is so precariously debt ridden, not Scotland, and consequently liable to default on its interest payments and diligence for its people if things go belly up.

    (That reality is reversed by the anti-self-governance lobby.)

    The wisest path – call it enlightened self-interest – is to join with Scotland and enjoy a share of its prosperity, assuming it is given the freedom to develop.

    I have no doubt Osborne’s leaden, clumsy intervention over currency use, the remarkable suddenness moving from the passive, “Let’s leave it to Scotland to argue,” to the aggressive, “You walk away from the pound,” is partly from an alarm at the billions they face stemming further floods.

    “You walk away” is not the same as “you cannot share it.”)

    The floods are devastating for the Coalition’s economic recovery plans. The floods cover more than villages; they leave swathes of arable land toxic for years. Worse, the EU loathing Tories and acolytes shall have to ask those horrid Europeans, the Dutch, for help and advice.

    (The Coalition will, however, exploit the the floods to introduce more cuts on England’s NHS and education system.)

    Meanwhile, the power elite of Whitehall and the British Establishment will ensure there is enough of our taxes to pay the trillions owed for aircraft carriers and planes to sustain the delusion we are a world power, on par with the USA, ready to take on China, North Korea, the EU, Mugabe, the entire Arabian continent, and Argentina, all at once.

    All that is required meantime is to tame those troublesome Scots.

    Now where have I heard that before?

  380. HandandShrimp says:

    Scottish Skier

    If one goes back to my early days in CIF, a fair few years now, I was a Devo Max supporter. I have come to the conclusion that it is going nowhere. There is no real political will where it matters. The desperation to remove it from the referendum was as clear an idication as could be possible to obtain. At that point I shifted to full independence. It is the cleanest and simplest option. I doubt I would go back now even if they did resurrect the ghost at the the 11th hour. However, Ruthie has killed it stone dead. No agreement this side of a vote leaves only one secure option and that is Yes. I will not buy pie in the sky.

  381. MochaChoca says:

    I hear ya, but if I was in charge of iScotland, the idea of Westminster still pulling my levers would really stick in my craw.

  382. @Mochachoca

    “The idea of Westminster still pulling my levers would … stick in my craw.”

    You return us to “Wur aw’ doomed!”

    You presume what Scotland is faced with now will be the same ever after.

    Administrations come and go. Sharing sterling need not be permanent. Much will depend on how it favours mutual trade. Nor will “Westminster still pull levers” when we have total control over taxation, VAT, and spending policy.

  383. Busy-Bee says:

    Does anyone else look at Alisair Darling nowadays and automatically think ‘Tory’ rather than ‘Labour’, or is it just me?

  384. bald eagle says:

    anyone remember bill and ben the flowerpot men

    how would they describe ali darling

    a)mumbling idiot

    b)flipper flopper

  385. Croompenstein says:

    yer at it again Alec u clickbaiter – The other point to make I guess is that the SNP have already got an option for limited variance in income tax, but choose not to use this. May be this is the model. Westminster sets the central rate, with regions allowed a tolerance either side. Yorkshire = Region, Scotland = Country

  386. Paula Rose says:

    refresh

  387. TYRAN says:

    Captain Darling in his own ZX Spectrum games…

    Blinky’s Scary School
    http://www.worldofspectrum.org/infoseekid.cgi?id=0000568

    Titanic Blinky
    http://www.worldofspectrum.org/infoseekid.cgi?id=0005299

    The last title is rather amusing. 😀

  388. alec says:

    @Grouse beater – “The floods are devastating for the Coalition’s economic recovery plans. The floods cover more than villages; they leave swathes of arable land toxic for years.”

    Bit of hyperbole? Less than 0.4% of English farmland has been flooded, and most of that is permanent pasture that will benefit greatly from the regular dump of enriched sediment.

    Overall, after facing the highest recorded storm surge, the highest waves recorded in UK inshore waters, and the highest ever winter rainfall across much of southern England, the impact of the floods has been remarkably well contained. The Environment Agency has done an excellent job over the last 10 years or so.

    The coalitions recovery plans are total shite, but this hasn’t got anything to do with the weather.

  389. @ Alec

    You’ve not been affected by the floods or the inevitable aftermath, have you? Neither house owner, shopkeeper, publican, business manager, or farmer.

  390. Aidan says:

    @Luke
    rUK may be more populous but it is not richer per capita than Scotland.

    And it is the visible emergence of a different political and social order in Scotland that underpins the case for full autonomy. There’s a different, better future opening up for us, if we are willing to take it.

    You are mistaken if you think that Scottish Nationalism is the bedrock of the argument for independence. The issues of political legitimacy, economic logic and social justice form the real foundation for the case.

    Perhaps the presence of the words ‘Scottish’ and ‘National’ before the word ‘Party’ are leading you to think that the SNP and it’s political agenda can be summed up as arising from and aiming at something recognisably narrow and parochial (see your remarks about ’emotional appeal’ and pride in heritage). From the tone and content of your comment, you seem to see Alex Salmond as synonymous with the SNP and the SNP as synonymous with the movement towards Independence and from there leap to the conclusion that the entire case for an independent Scotland can be captured, interrogated and found wanting in a similar way.

    As a corrective, I suggest that you look to the Scottish Greens, the SSP, Labour for Independence, and other more diverse sources for the the bigger picture and – when you have come full circle – you will better understand what the SNP actually represent to the people of Scotland at the present time, and what they are in a position to achieve.

    You say:

    “…The case for Independence needs to be made on the basis that fundamentally things will be demonstrably better because of a new context which allows for such things, not some insubstantial promise that everyone will simply be happier because they are somehow more ideologically “free”.”

    If the SG’s White Paper ‘Scotland’s Future’ has not given you enough substance, check out Business for Scotland and the Jimmy Reid Foundation. Both of these pro-Indy, non-SNP sites will enable you to approach the same big, round table of the debate from very different directions and give you more than enough to chew on.

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

    http://reidfoundation.org/common-weal/

  391. Alec says:

    @Grouse beater – “You’ve not been affected by the floods or the inevitable aftermath, have you? Neither house owner, shopkeeper, publican, business manager, or farmer.”

    No, I haven’t been, nor has my house been swallowed whole by a sink hole.

    One thing those in Scotland ought to be very familiar with, is the reporting of southern events by the UK media does tend to introduce a substantial bias in the impression given.

    So far, in this extended winter flood event, around 6,000 homes have been flooded, primarily in Somerset (not many – less than 1,000 I understand) the Thames Valley, and along the south coast.

    In 2007, nearly 60,000 homes were flooded, mainly in northern England. While the periods of floods tended to be shorter than in Somerset (about the same length of time as the Thames Valley currently) many properties were flooded multiple times over several months.

    Yesterday a sink destroyed a house in Ripon, N. Yorkshire. It didn’t make the national BBC news 6pm bulletins. Three sink holes in locations close to London, which created difficulties but didn’t actually destroy any properties, were No 1 news item on the same bulletins when they occurred.

    These floods and storms have been intense, and extremely distressing for those involved, but the net impact has been surprisingly limited. Perceptions of the impact have been greatly heightened, however, by the southern location and the extent to which the media has played the story, with it’s traditional London based centre of gravity.

    Scottish independence campaigners should be well versed in this, and able to see through the distortion and appreciate the actual scale of events.

  392. Anger issues says:

    Was very encouraged by the reaction of the audience- seemed very pro-indy to me. One woman at the back spouted ‘why are we even having this referendum, we’re not living in Damascus’- complete silence from the room. Otherwise, the questions and responses were all positive.



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