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The morality of nationalism 21

Posted on February 26, 2017 by

No.5: Tom Morton, former BBC broadcaster and No campaigner.

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The Weasel 120

Posted on February 26, 2017 by

It’s important to note, firstly, that the version of Sadiq Khan’s speech to the Scottish Labour conference he tweeted on Saturday morning simply flat-out said that Scottish nationalists were the same as racists and sectarian bigots. Its meaning was as clear as crystal to the Daily Record, a newspaper which is hardly hostile to Khan’s party.


“No difference” is a stark and unambiguous phrase. The speech did not contain the hastily-added qualifiers about “in this respect” and “of course I’m not saying the SNP are racist” which suddenly appeared when he read it out onstage that afternoon.

But which version did he really mean?

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The pound-shop Ruth Davidson 106

Posted on February 26, 2017 by

Yesterday afternoon, Scottish Labour tweeted some comments from Kezia Dugdale’s keynote speech to the party conference that might be the most self-evidently idiotic thing ever said by a Scottish politician.


Now, whether you support independence or not it’s a plain, measurable, empirical fact that it IS all of those things. Saying it’s not “an alternative”, in particular, is roughly on a par with asserting that the Earth doesn’t revolve around the Sun.

We were about to go on a rant about the jaw-dropping stupidity of the claim when it struck us that it might be a bit more interesting to see how the speech, and indeed the conference, had gone down with its intended audience – Scottish Labour delegates.

And as it happened, we had some data on that.

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For Sadiq Khan 215

Posted on February 25, 2017 by

What does racism and separatism actually look like? How would we know it if we saw it? What are its defining characteristics? Who are its advocates?


Let’s see if we can find out.

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Liars K to B 100

Posted on February 24, 2017 by

This is a story in the Herald today.


Thing is, we know it’s a lie. Who says so? Kezia Dugdale does.

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A completely different situation 57

Posted on February 24, 2017 by

No.4: file under “Hell actually froze over”.

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More questions than answers 130

Posted on February 24, 2017 by

We were very pleased to hear Gary Robertson challenge Kezia Dugdale on the curious matter of Scottish Labour’s membership and income figures on today’s Good Morning Scotland. Dugdale flapped and dodged and waffled for as long as she could before diverting the topic onto federalism, and eventually managed to wriggle away from the subject without any sort of proper answer (through no fault of Robertson’s).

(Good Morning Scotland, BBC Radio Scotland, 24 February 2017)

But what she said just made the situation MORE confusing, not less.

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News values depreciate further 133

Posted on February 23, 2017 by

Almost a year ago we ran a short piece mocking a Scotsman headline which claimed that “THOUSANDS” of people had signed a Tory anti-referendum petition, when the actual number was a strictly-accurate-but-pathetic TWO thousand.

We didn’t think that could ever be beaten for technically-true hyperbolic exaggeration, but we’d reckoned without the bold boundary-pushing ingenuity of the Daily Express.


Hundreds of thousands? How many hundreds, exactly?

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The best news ever 105

Posted on February 23, 2017 by

We don’t normally run rumours on Wings, but this one was too good to pass up. We offer it to you on the clear basis that it IS just gossip, but it’s from a source we trust.

Our source says that “he’s selling himself – to any influential figures who’ll listen – as a PR chief for Better Together 2. In my personal opinion I don’t think they will be silly enough to let him back in, frankly, but he seems to be indestructable.” 


They also gave us a quote from what they described as “a well-placed insider”:

“McTernan is itching for a comeback.

He’s sniffing around both in London and among Scottish contacts to see if he can carve out a senior role in the inevitable indyref2 campaign, which everyone’s having to pretend isn’t inevitable at all.

Given his track record there’s a fair degree of concern, to say the least. But he still holds sway with some senior figures in London especially. He is disliked by many in Scottish Labour but seems to have charmed some of the Tories. Given the number of lives he’s had few will be surprised if he manages to worm his way in to the upper echelons of Better Together 2.”

We’re crossing ALL our fingers, folks.

The views from where you are 108

Posted on February 23, 2017 by

Today seems a good day to bring up the latest snippet of data from our poll.


Less than a third of Scots of all parties and persuasions think BBC Scotland provides “balanced” political coverage. Even among Unionists, twice as many feel it’s biased in their favour as the frankly unhinged group who think it’s pro-independence.

Remarkably, more Tory voters think the Beeb is biased in favour of independence than think it leans towards the Union, which is quite some feat of self-delusion. Among Labour and Lib Dem voters it’s three-to-one the other way, and more than 17-to-1 among SNP supporters.

Meanwhile, 5% of respondents claimed to have “never heard of” the state broadcaster, which just goes to prove what Panelbase regularly tell us about how you can get 5% to 10% of people to vote for ANY answer you put in a poll, up to and including “Would you like us to come round right now and shoot you in the face?”

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Kezia Dugdale Fact Check, Part 678 141

Posted on February 22, 2017 by

There’s an interesting story in the Herald today about Scottish Labour’s finances.


It reveals that the party’s income from donations plunged from £600,000 in 2015 to £100,000 last year, which in the article is blamed on Jeremy Corbyn’s UK leadership (even though Dugdale opposed him in the leadership election).

But there were a few comments in the piece that we thought needed scrutiny.

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In their back yard 77

Posted on February 22, 2017 by

We thought you’d like a wee cross-tabbed update on yesterday’s Trident poll news:


Of all the people who wanted to retain the UK’s nuclear weapons, just over HALF of them (56%) were prepared to have them kept in Scotland. 15% did a total U-turn when confronted with the thought of having them in the same place they’ve been for the last 30-odd years, and nearly a third suddenly weren’t so sure nukes were a great idea when they were reminded they’re kept about half an hour from Glasgow.

It’s an interesting stat to keep in mind when the subject is debated.

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