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Wings Over Scotland


The independence dividend

Posted on May 04, 2016 by

In so far as this Holyrood election has been a battle at all, the battleground for it has been tax. Not only the Unionist opposition but the pro-indy left have attacked the SNP for timidity over its plans to keep income tax rates the same as the rest of the UK, with only a tweak on the threshold for the top rate.

In their defence the Nats have deployed a line that’s been widely derided as an old Tory argument derived from the so-called “Laffer curve”, but in fact is nothing of the sort. It centres around the ways wealthy people legally shield their income from tax, but there’s a very specific and very important wrinkle that applies only in the particular case of a devolved, not independent, Scotland.

chancedividend

It’s not at all complicated but it’s absolutely crucial, and it’s barely been discussed on even the most superficial level in any supposed analyses of the situation undertaken in the media, so as usual we suppose it’s going to be down to us to do the job.

The Scottish Government has put out a document explaining its belief that increasing the top rate to 50p in Scotland while it remains 45p in the rest of the UK would risk wealthy people avoiding it, to the point where the increase could easily LOSE money rather than gain it.

However, while it makes a pretty decent argument so far as it goes, the document barely touches on the key mechanism by which Scotland could suffer such a fate, talking instead mostly of people changing their residence in order to cut their tax bill.

That’s a genuine danger – moving from, say, Edinburgh to Newcastle to save yourself thousands of pounds in tax is a much easier proposition within the UK than it would be if Scotland was independent and such a move entailed the considerable hassle of actually emigrating – but it only applies to a proportion of higher-rate payers.

(People like headteachers, surgeons, senior police officers and council officials, who may well be on the top rate, can’t easily up sticks and do their jobs from England.)

hector1

The real risk in residence terms comes from private-sector businessmen, who can headquarter their companies and themselves pretty much anywhere they like. Should they relocate to England, the Scottish Government loses not only the extra 5p tax but the whole of their tax contribution.

“Ah”, say those on the left, “but that wouldn’t really happen, because even if they wanted to save on tax, they wouldn’t want to move because then they’d – for example – also have to pay to send their kids to university”.

And there’s a substantial element of truth in that – the financial equation has more than one variable, and the social and personal upheaval of relocating your family as well as your business isn’t a small trifle.

But there’s a very little-known aspect of the devolution of income tax to Holyrood, and that’s the fact that only the tax on income derived from SALARIES will come north. In tax jargon this is what’s called “non-savings non-dividend (NSND) income”, and it means the basic wage at the top line of your payslip.

The tax on any money earned from savings and dividends still goes to the Treasury in London, and that’s the killer. Most people have little or nothing in the way of savings and no idea what “dividends” are, or at best think they’re something to do with shares. But that’s not the case, and we need to look at what the term really means.

capdiv

We have some friends in England who own a company that’s doing quite well. Despite its success they pay themselves a pretty modest wage from it – less than the UK national average of £27,531. But their real income as directors is more like twice that, because their basic wages are topped up by “dividends”.

Since we don’t want to talk in detail about people’s private financial affairs, we’ll use some completely made-up figures for illustration. Let’s say there are 10 of them, and that the company’s profits after tax are £2m a year. Out of that they pay themselves a basic salary of £20,000 each. That leaves £1.8m in the company kitty.

But any time they feel like it, our friends can also choose to pay themselves any amount of the £1.8m they want as a “dividend”, at which point the dividend becomes part of their personal income. If they choose, they can up their salaries from £20,000 a year to ten times as much, or any figure in between the two.

All of this is perfectly legal. One advantage is flexibility – they can tailor their personal incomes so as to earn as much as possible without going into the higher tax brackets in any given year. Another is that dividends, unlike salary, aren’t subject to National Insurance, saving both the company and individuals money.

But dividend income also attracts lower tax. As of this year you get the first £5000 of dividend income totally tax-free, and then pay income tax on the dividend part of your income at lower rates.

divitax

These rates are set by the UK government, not the Scottish one. And what that means is that if you’re a wealthy businessman based in Scotland and the higher rates of income tax go up significantly, you’ll suddenly have an incentive to shift some or all of your income from salary to dividends.

(Clearly that incentive already exists now, but the bigger the gap in tax rates between Scotland and England, the bigger the incentive gets. If the top rate of tax was 45% in England and 50% in Scotland, then the advantage of dividend income would go from the current 6.9% to a whopping 11.9%, almost double.)

And the key factor of switching to dividend income rather than relocating to reduce your tax bill is that for you it has no downside – you won’t have to move house, you won’t suddenly make your kids eligible for tuition fees, you won’t have to leave your nice Georgian townhouse in Edinburgh for somewhere less scenic.

But for the Scottish Government the downside will be much more serious. Even though you might not be paying very much less total tax, the tax on a huge chunk of your income – which would normally have come to Holyrood – will instead be sucked down to London, leaving a gaping hole in Scotland’s finances.

Let’s put some rough numbers on that. If our made-up directors pay themselves £200,000 each as a salary, they’d normally be paying £76,100 a year each to the new Scottish Exchequer. But if they chose to take that exact same total income as a £20,000 salary and £180,000 in dividends (because doing so meant paying top-rate tax of 38.1% on the dividend part rather than 50%), the Scottish Government would get just £1,800 in tax from each of them, with the rest going to London.

The implications of this are one of the reasons the “no detriment” principle of the Scotland Act powers has been kicked down the road for five years.

That single company would have transferred something in the region of £743,000 a year from Scotland’s coffers to Westminster’s – almost three-quarters of a million pounds of real money the Scottish Government wouldn’t have for public services, and which would show up in GERS (and endless graphs from angry dog-food salesmen) as more evidence of Scotland being too wee and too poor to run its own affairs.

kevsnpbad

In a way that’s not visible to most people (for whom tax is no more complicated than a PAYE figure that automatically comes out of their pay packet every month), the mechanics of the devolution of income tax conceal a huge and potentially lethal trap for any Scottish Government looking to put tax up – an arrangement that should come as no surprise given that it was set up by a Conservative UK government.

Anyone who’s in control of their own salary to any significant extent – which is most people running their own businesses – can choose to get their income paid in a way that saves them a useful amount of money, but which costs the Scottish Government far more than it saves the individual.

While tax rates are the same on both sides of the border there’s no reason for them to do that (if they don’t do it already). But if Scottish income tax goes up, there will be, and the result will be a potentially huge cash drain from Scotland to the Treasury.

scotcash2

None of this, of course, would apply in the case of an independent Scotland. In that scenario tax on dividend income would come to Holyrood just like tax on salary income. There’d still be an incentive for people to relocate themselves or their businesses if Scottish taxes were higher, but as we’ve discussed there are major downsides to that, both personal and financial.

For that reason, there’s no inconsistency whatsoever in the SNP having advocated a 50p tax rate in the UK election last year and then declining to impose one in a devolved Scotland with its new tax powers. The two situations are radically different, because in the process of devolving tax but only on NSND income, London is giving itself a back door by which it can come in and take a sneaky bite out of Scotland’s money if the powers are actually used.

We hope readers haven’t glazed over during this article. We kept it as simple as we could. But both the Unionist parties and the far-left opposition in Scotland are counting on the fact that to most people the darker intricacies of the tax system are something that simply doesn’t concern them, so they don’t have any reason to understand them.

Hiking top-rate tax in a devolved Scotland is far, far harder than it would be in an independent one, for all sorts of reasons. Dividends are just one of them. If Labour and the Lib Dems genuinely want to put up taxes to protect public services, the only way that can really work is if they start backing independence.

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  1. 04 05 16 10:56

    The independence dividend | speymouth

  2. 10 01 17 12:51

    Oil and Grants | Young Team For Independence

391 to “The independence dividend”

  1. Denys Partington says:

    Wow. That is amazing. You really are the top man.

  2. Macart says:

    That is why people should expect and need a party of government right now, as opposed to a party of protest.

    Its not simply about having the powers. Its how you choose to use or NOT use them.

  3. bobajock says:

    As someone working in finance its always been evident that the ‘power’ given to Scotland was actually so full of holes leaking back to Westminster that it was a joke.

    This is a brilliant explanation to be honest, more so as it clarifies ‘saying vs doing’ in the context of how little power was actually given.

    Labour and the LibLiars might not have seen any of this, as the abacus they use has no dividend slider.

  4. James Kay says:

    I have a small annuity which pays about £600 per year, on which I pay 20% tax, around £120. This is deducted by the company, headquartered in Sussex, and is presumably forwarded to Westminster.

    If all the money were paid to me in Scotland, all my tax would go to Holyrood – my tax code has an ‘S’ in front. I do not suppose that there is some sort of compensatory measure to ensure that my £120 ends up in the right place!

  5. Billy says:

    Great explanation stu would that mean if labour raised 400 million by increasing tax by a penny would westminster take 400 million out of the barnet formula?

  6. The Man in the Jar says:

    Well you learn something new every day!

    It was heavy going for a bit but I managed to absorb it all (I think)

    Sneaky unionist con men. They’d make Arthur Daily look honest. But there again what else would you expect from these dirty rotten self serving crooks. I bet they were patting each other on the back when they thought that one up.

    SNPx2

  7. Andrew McLean says:

    Let me get this straight, what you have inadvertently pointed out is that the Labour and Liberal positions are based on ignorance of taxation, the very subject that they claim to be experts in?

    Surely not? No I can’t believe that political parties festooned with millionaire businessmen don’t understand dividends?

    What’s the little round angry bouncing chap got to say about this, or is she to busy “breaking in” a rhinoceros in her Guinness book of records attempt to ride every beast known to man?

  8. heedtracker says:

    Light years from their The Vow Shyste and so much for no detriment. Scotland bill’s make the Scottish Parliament the most powerful devolved assembly in the world, they smirk, as our imperial masters nearly got away with their £7 billion cut to Scotland’s block grant.

    Wonder why toryboy world tried to get away with that too.

    SNP X 2:D

  9. Proud Cybernat says:

    Brilliant analysis, Rev. How do you do it? The use of this tax would be like trying to slip the car into 1st gear only to find there’s a booby-trap device under your seat that springs up and snaps your arm off.

    Yoons and lefties take note.

    SNP BOTH VOTES

  10. Capella says:

    I’m astonished. Congratulations on prising the lid off another can of worms. So does this mean that income tax on dividends is currently credited to the Treasury in Westminster and not to the Scottish Government’s revenue? Is GERS skewed in yet another sly sleight of hand?

  11. pstephenson says:

    That’s a genuine danger – moving from, say, Edinburgh to Newcastle to save yourself thousands of pounds in tax is a much easier proposition within the UK than it would be if Scotland was independent and such a move entailed the considerable hassle of actually emigrating – but it only applies to a proportion of higher-rate payers.

    You don’t have to ’emigrate’ to move from one EU country to another.

    What hassle would there be?

  12. Andrew McLean says:

    The bank has not paid me a dividend, neither has an annuity payment been made, I haven’t passed go, and I don’t hold a get out of jail free card.

    BUT I WILL BE VOTING SNP X 2, THAT’S A GAME WHICH WE CAN ALL WIN!

  13. Is nobody arguing against paying ANY taxes to London and spending it where it is needed – here in Scotland?

  14. NeoconNat says:

    Good article and explanation.

    Dividends effectively get taxed twice though, once as profits and twice as earnings? Wages aren’t taxed twice so it’s a more complex calculation than it appears, no?

    I’m predisposed to look at this from the perspective of an evil scheming ratbag businessman. Apologies for that.

    Basically we are saying that raising incoming tax up here would result in people moving address and/or switching to dividends based earnings… who’d do a thing like that? 😐

    Presumably, though, if we reduced income tax up here, it would potentially have the opposite effect, and people down south would be encouraged to move or register up here for tax purposes? Ideally we would reduce corporation tax and dividends tax too but I’m getting ahead of myself again, aren’t I…

    The sooner we get independence, the simpler and better for us all.

  15. Merida says:

    Great explanation Stu, although I knew there were lots of real reasons to NOT use the ‘new tax powers’I was struggling to put it in some kind of understandable way.

    You have done just that.

  16. Dr Jim says:

    Been saying it since the start of this whole process but in an even simpler way
    “The English will try and Fukc us coz it’s what they do”

    On a serious note the folk who don’t understand this will still not understand it, falling for the most powerful devolved parliament in the known universe shit and Wee Chairman Harvies Victor Meldrew argument on Capital Flight

    “I don’t believe it” (will happen)

    Or Miss “Nyooze the new powers of the parliament” lassie

    It is sad however that we live in a country where the press and media of that country haven’t pointed that out because they despise their own country and would rather be another country

    Of course it should be said that the press and media of this country are not very bright so maybe they’re not genetically programmed to understand these things in the way that the important people in the other country they aspire to be like do

    Clear?…. probably not

  17. Ken500 says:

    You can only take dividend on profits. Profits are taxed by Corporation tax 20%? Same differnce. It can still be accrued to Scotland even though it goes to Westminster Treasury. i.e. Included in Scottish tax take and make sure it comes back.

    Scotland loses more from tax evasion. £3Billion? HMRC not fit for purpose.

  18. Blind Squirrel says:

    I actually wondered if we could DROP the tax rate, but only for top earners, to attract their non PAYE income into our tax system, and competing directly with London. Wasn’t aware Westminster had foreseen that possibility, which is smart of them.

  19. Sunniva says:

    I still think that high earners on salaries (not dividends) in the public sector say, above £100k, could easily ‘relocate’ south for tax purposes, though of course they would have to figure out if keeping a home address in England and a week day temporary work address in Scotland or else travel expenses was worth their while financially for any tax saving they made.

  20. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Great explanation stu would that mean if labour raised 400 million by increasing tax by a penny would westminster take 400 million out of the barnet formula?”

    Completely separate issue.

  21. mealer says:

    I thought the company directors wages would come out before corporation tax and be subject to PAYE the same as any other employee of the company.This doesn’t alter the substance of the article which is extremely important.

  22. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Dividends effectively get taxed twice though, once as profits and twice as earnings?”

    Yes – as noted in the tax-rates caption, Corporation Tax will have been paid on the profits before the dividends are issued. There are still serious advantages, though.

    (And of course it doesn’t impact at all on the point of the article.)

  23. Tony Little says:

    @Ken500

    You are right about Corporation taxes but they are to remain under WM control, so Scotland loses out on them anyway.

    Rev: Thanks for this, It clarified a couple of things I wasn’t certain about. Should be required reading. I will use the info when the opportunities allow.

  24. Inverclyder says:

    Makes you wonder if Labour Northern Accounting Unit have taken all this into account with their Baillienomics approach to all things money.

    Perhaps they were Baillienomical with the truth.

    At least there’s always APD to fall back on!

    I’ll be out to vote for 8am tomorrow. SNP x2.

  25. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I still think that high earners on salaries (not dividends) in the public sector say, above £100k, could easily ‘relocate’ south for tax purposes”

    They absolutely could, yes, but it’d be considerably trickier for public-sector employees whose job was tied to a location.

  26. yesindyref2 says:

    OT
    I’m going to be in England (Lakes) for the election, anyone tell me please how I can watch the results live, or some website that puts the results up live? Thanks.

  27. starlaw says:

    So Labour and Lib dems would increase tax to compensate for Tory cuts. What plans do they have for all off the rest of the cuts coming our way .. increase tax again and again .. Increasing tax one
    penny, is the start of a very, very slippery slope, don’t even go there

  28. Greannach says:

    I must admit I’m not surprised that Willie Rennie, Kezia Dugdale and Ruth Davidson haven’t mentioned this. It wouldn’t be fair to expect them to understand it.

  29. Sunniva says:

    There is a flaw in your argument though Stu, which is that the dividend system works so well for those paying themselves a salary that none of them would ever bring themselves into the upper earnings bracket anyway, whatever it was. It is just plain daft to set your salary at a level that would attract a higher rate of tax, when you can pay a lower rate, plus dividend whenever you need extra dosh.

    Your wider point, that there is a whole wad of money that goes from Scottish earnings and businesses via tax receipts on dividends and unearned income to London is of course sound.

  30. sandycraig says:

    Excellent article, I actually read somewhere recently about that dividend scenario but didn’t fully understand. This explains it perfectly.

    I very much doubt if many high earners would relocate south, especially if they have been here for a few years, children settled at schools etc, if they could take their dividends in an independent Scotland and end up paying no more than they pay at present.

    This is another big reason for independence, pronto.

  31. mr thms says:

    #yesindyref2 @ 10:55 am

    If you have a smart phone / tablet / iPad / laptop and access to wifi you could catch it on BBC iPlayer

  32. William Hogg says:

    Similarly to James Kay above I have a pension in draw down on which I am paying income tax rates. However, I am unsure if the tax take on this income will be credited to the Scottish Exchequer.

  33. galamcennalath says:

    I must be more tax savvy than most.

    When people discuss avoiding tax, in a Scottish devolved context, I have always assumed they didn’t actually mean move location.

    There are simple, effective, normal even (for those with sufficient dosh) means for people in private business to take income other than salary.

    Dividends as discussed. These are also free of National Insurance.

    Also, there are means of selling shares as assets which means the income is liable to Capital Gains Tax which has an additional tax free allowance of £11,100. And, there are additional allowances if the ‘investment’ concerns High Tech activities.

    Move house with the UK to avoid tax? Why ever would someone do that!?

    Very little can be done with devolved power over income tax alone. That is why SmithLite is actually of little use!

    There is only one way to allow Scotland’s tax system to change into something which works for the benefit of Scotland, independence.

  34. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    “the only way that can really work is if they start backing independence.”

    Well said, Stu. When will the penny drop with the remains of the Labour and LibDem parties in Scotland.
    It must or they will disappear leaving us in a Scotland v the Tories battle. Ya beauty.

    The penny has dropped with Kevin McKenna of course as evidenced his interesting contribution in the National today.
    National also has good coverage of the Northern Isles. Looks like we are hopeful there

  35. Phil Robertson says:

    What a load of blethers!

    You say that the NSND money “still goes to the Treasury in London”. But you omit to mention that Scotland will still get its share of the non-NSND revenues through the block grant.

    The main difference between the Scottish Government and the Labour/Liberal proposals is about the basic rate of tax.

    This hypothetical sally into the might and might-nots of those affected by changes in additional rate taxpayers avoids answering the central question of basic tax.

    Mind you, Nicola S. probably would not have got the backing the Scottish Sun if she had proposed a rise in the basic rate.

  36. Tam W says:

    My wife and I own a small company together, and our accountant recommends that we pay ourselves the meagre salary of £671 per month (£8052 per year) each, and then dividends on top of that. This obviously means that we don’t pay any income tax to Scotland at all.

  37. Alan Mackintosh says:

    Andrew Maclean, fixed it for you…

    “What’s the little round angry bouncing chap got to say about this, or is she to busy “breaking in” a rhinoceros in her Guinness book of records attempt to ride every beast except a man?”

  38. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “But you omit to mention that Scotland will still get its share of the non-NSND revenues through the block grant.”

    There is no discernible mechanism for achieving this. Do point me to it. Basic rate is a different subject entirely.

  39. Mosstrooper says:

    Great article Rev. and accurate. Some years ago (before !997) In partnership with a pal we had a small business and we paid ourselves the minimum wage and then topped up with directors dividends. It was legal and to us the wisest course and economically prudent on a personal basis.

  40. grahamlive says:

    This article was hard going but very informative. May have to re-read to wrap my head around it.

    Your hilarious SNP bad graph provided some welcome light relief btw. 🙂

  41. Iain R says:

    Yep that is the problem with a lot of people in this country they are totally ignorant of how the tax system works. They assume that everybody operates as they do under the PAYE system and as such can not see the wood for the trees.

    The well off do not simply run under the PAYE system, that is just a single strand. They operate in other ways as well, 40% tax relief on pension contributes, share schemes, share dividends, company cars and even structuring their work career via a limited company. This is all part of the UK System so beloved of the Tories and is a rotten festering mess. It ensures that the heavy lifting is done by those in the middle and to divert the attention away from the greedy at the top the media and establishment campaign to point the finger at the “spongers” at the bottom!

    I worked in Aberdeen for several years and lots of people were working for themselves within a Ltd company (this is common practice for IT contractors as well). They accepted a risk that they could be paid off with little notice but as a result they were making 3 to 4 times as much as PAYE workers and also paying less tax.

    I have explained this to countless people and they just to do not seem to understand how this could be, in fact I think many do not even believe it.

    So many people in darkness in Scotland, I guess that is why we lost.

  42. Robin Ross says:

    Thanks Rev, for this very illuminating and well written article.

    As somebody who was on PAYE all his working life, I tend to forget about the tax benefits open to the self-employed.

    Although I do wonder why the SNP have not made more of this, I can’t say that I’m surprised that the issues you have raised would appear to have escaped RISE’s attention. Yet another reason why I’ll be voting SNP X 2.

  43. NeoconNat says:

    Sunniva “It is just plain daft to set your salary at a level that would attract a higher rate of tax, when you can pay a lower rate, plus dividend whenever you need extra dosh.”

    In practice that’s how it goes as we all know. But, it isn’t as big a loophole as it appears because you pay corporation tax on profits but not on earnings and then you get taxed (albeit on a reduced rate) on the dividends.

    There’s a lot of uncertainty and volatility out there right now and that seems to encourage more unscrupulous accounting practices etc.

    Things would be more stable and less volatile in an independent Scotland. You’ve got to assume that after a few years, with the right capital investments and industrial policy, the Scottish economy would improve dramatically and be a lot more diverse. Spending on things like houses and infrastructure would increase and the spin-off effects of that would be massive for business.

    Business owners and entrepreneurs must know all that so it’s puzzling to me that they aren’t at the forefront of the independence movement.

  44. Ken500 says:

    NI is paid on PAYE. It is not 20%

  45. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “You don’t have to ’emigrate’ to move from one EU country to another. What hassle would there be?”

    You honestly think there’s no hassle at all in becoming, say, a citizen of France rather than a citizen of the UK?

    Still, I admire your confidence in asserting so firmly that we’ll all still be in an EU country after June.

  46. Giving Goose says:

    Of course if we had a varied economy where things were actually made, built and manufactured, then having to hunt about for additional ways of taxation wouldn’t be such a requirement (apart from the obvious subject of sending Scotland’s cash to London and receiving pocket money in return).

    If you look at the current debate about housing that is especially heated in the South of England, it’s so very obvious that the UK economy is completely screwed. Taxation receipts are so dependent on the financial services industry that any move towards affordable housing has to be resisted.

    Artificially high house prices means a requirement for loans/mortgages/credit, thus fuelling the financial services industry. It’s self perpetuating. If you built affordable housing in the quantities that are required, then this would undermine the very industry that the UK economy depends on.

    Time to get out, everyone and start creating a healthy, diverse economy.

  47. One_Scot says:

    ‘interesting contribution’

    You’re having a laugh. Might want to read some of the comments.

  48. Martin says:

    Absolutely spot on again. The fact that dividend tax has been withheld from the Scottish tax powers is absolutely criminal, utterly deliberate, and scandalously predictable.

    There is really no argument to do anything much with taxes (except maybe raise lower end tax free fresh hold) in the coming powers. Any move that could potentially raise money will automatically cause a loss of revenue for the reasons listed in your article. Frankly anyone who CAN pay themselves by dividend and doesn’t has a bad accountant, but in an ideal world dividend tax would go to Holyrood as well. There’s no good argument against it unless you want to torpedo the Scottish government.

  49. davidb says:

    They are not taxed twice. If you retain the profit and don’t pay it out its taxed, and subsequently if you draw the money its taxed again. But if you draw the dividends at the time you get a tax credit and the tax is paid only once. You may pay a higher rate in income tax if you grab lots, than you would pay in corporation tax. But you need to be running quite a big business for that.

    I read a thing about the richest areas of the UK at the weekend. I chuckled because it implied the average income in the places was about 50- 60 k. The inference would be incorrect because a smart accountant finds ways to keep the income tax down. You still cant get a mortgage on a million pound house if you only earn 60k a year.

    Incidentally. How good is an insurance scheme where the benefits bear no relationship to the premiums? NI is another bit of wool pulling.

  50. Giesabrek says:

    Sorry to bring this up, but if dividends currently pay less tax than income tax and NI combined, surely most directors of companies will currently be using this method to pay themselves? I understood that this was exactly how they paid themselves in general.

    And therefore there really isn’t any difference between introducing a 50p income tax band since directors in Scotland aren’t generally paying themselves enough to hit the 40p tax band.

    FYI, I’m all for maintaining similar tax rates to rUK in a devolved Scotland as long as possible for many reasons, one mentioned here, another being that raising taxes noticeably higher than in rUK is likely to make the Scottish government disliked, whoever does it, without being able to compensate by encouraging the business sector to grow.

  51. Onwards says:

    Because many company owners and self employed can basically choose what they pay themselves, they know that can simply wait it out for a year or two if the higher tax rate is increased. They can pump more money into their business instead, or just leave profits sitting in the bank.

    Knowing there will be huge political pressure to drop the tax if the government tax take is less than expected in the first year.

  52. heraldnomore says:

    Excellent stuff Stu, and I speak as one with a certain degree of expertise in the field. The brutal reality is that we can, or soon will be able to, tax the workforce but not the businesses.

    In addition to the dividend position, which is all about saving NIC and has been going on ever since Gordie introduced his ill-thought out zero rate band for corporation tax some years back, we also exclude from the contributions to Scotland’s coffers the many investors and landlords in our communities.

    Tax on rental profits, which is set to rise as the blue tories mount a four-pronged attack on those who gorged on Maggie’s right to buy, will go to Westminster, in full, for our property owners.

    The dividend tax which you mentioned above applies equally to the wealthy investors, and there are plenty of them, paying tax at the highest rates, but not to Scotland.

    So we get to control our economy by looking solely at the workforce as a source of revenue, and can do nothing about business taxes, taxes on spending, or taxes on wealth. It’s nothing like the range of fiscal levers needed; nothing like federalism. Thank you Smith Commission; Scotland sold a pup once again.

    One day the people will realise, but for now all we can do is Both Votes SNP. Get the vote out.

  53. Gary says:

    Should add that anyone drawing a director salary of £20,000 from a limited company needs a new accountant.

    This is an important subject for me as I was unaware of the dividend income going south until I heard it on Scotland Tonight on Monday.

    I am self employed and like everyone else I guess I want to pay as little tax as possible, ultimately I want what I am paying to be spent in Scotland, so I think I will be having a word with my accountant and will be making some large charitable donations to local organisations that need funding.

  54. John Thomson says:

    Who needs an effective oposition when we have the rev. Labour, tories and liars should all retire. Stu you have my second vote

  55. Dan Huil says:

    Britnats will always muddy the waters when it comes to tax matters in particular and financial matters in general. The feart took on board britnat predictions pre-2014. Thankfully more and more people in Scotland seem to be doubting britnat expertise [!] in these matters – to put it mildly. The lies of Project Fear have been exposed.

  56. Ken500 says:

    Many contractors would rather be salaried. Fringe benefits, holiday pay. First to go.

    Divdend stays in Scotland. Corporation tax goes south.

  57. Sunniva says:

    @Neocon Nat. We all know that the case for independence is a rational one. But those Scottish businesses that oppose it are just human like anybody else and their irrational opposition just points to the fact that their support for the UK is largely emotional.

    Partly it’s fear of change. Partly it’s British identity. Partly it’s social – their business and personal lives are bound up with contacts in England and London and they fear that they would be operating outside of that post-indy.

    But mostly it’s complacency and laziness and an instinctive unwillingness to change or to respond to a change that is coming from below. The system is working fine for them personally, why change it? The fact that long term the country and their own fortunes would be far better off is lost on them because they prefer immediate and short term personal advantage.

  58. Sunniva says:

    I think that under EU rules VAT cannot be devolved. It has to remain in the sovereign country and that’s not us, alas. But the great beauty of VAT is that more or less everyone pays it. Nobody can really avoid it. Even those operating in the black market still have to spend their dosh in the high street or it’s not worth having.

  59. call me dave says:

    Well thanks for that wee bit of the jigsaw puzzle. It seems that the big picture is still the same even as it becomes clearer.

    SNP smart vote X 2 then. Independence referendum in good time.

    PS:
    A fair smattering of SNP flags on cars and vans this morning in Glenrothes.

    What I haven’t seen at all in any windae in the last 3 weeks is a labour poster in Glenrothes…Geez!

    Even my die-hard neighbour up the road has not put up the usual two. Bet she’s still voting labour though with a clothes peg on her nose. 🙂

  60. Andrew McLean says:

    To explain this further using a more representative example on a smaller salary of £68k verses dividend.

    If you pay yourself a salary of £8,000 per year, and draw down a further £60,000 in dividends, you first use up your £10,600 tax-free personal allowance when calculating your overall tax liability. You pay no dividend tax at all on the dividends you receive within the ‘basic’ tax band – i.e. on the first £31,785 (2015/16) after taking into account the personal allowance. So, there is no additional income tax to pay below £42,385. You are taxed on the gross dividend amount (10/9 times the £60,000 dividend) = £66,667. You must pay higher rate dividend tax on the income you have received between £42,385 and £74,667 (£32,282) – this is 22.5% of the gross dividend amount (32.5% higher tax rate – 10% tax credit) = £7263.45 So you take home £62.446.83 and pay £304 in NIC

    This against the take home pay of £46,760.00 when using PAYE, Gross income, £68,000.00 Personal allowance £10,600.00 Taxable income £57,400.00 tax paid £16,603.00 National Insurance £4,631.30.

    So given the choice, the government has arranged the rules,or stacked the cards, do you want to take home £46,760. or £62,446.
    To put it another way do you want to give the government £14,846 if you really don’t have too?

    As an aside when asked about paying more tax, for health or education, nearly everyone says yes great, but when it’s time to vote, well human nature and all that. Proof of that will arrive tomorrow night.

    The thing mentioned on here is most people never come across directors payments, they assume that the more you earn the more tax you pay, and its only millionaires in tax havens that can work tax, just by looking at a relatively modest salary, modest for senior management who as nominated directors with share capital can if they so desire only poor people pay full tax, FOOL tax, you see what happens in every company across Scotland, PAYE, no escape, everyone else its a game of hide the liability.

    However to end on a cheery note if you work for a employee owned business, or have shares you now can be paid a bonus, say at Christmas and not pay tax at all on it, if it’s under the threshold.

  61. Robert Louis says:

    You see, this is why this site is so important. Not one so-called Scottish journalist has even bothered to give the details of devolved taxation any thought. The tories in London, in their own machiavellian way, have of course considered ALL of this, and that is why John Swinney’s brave stand against them recently was so very, very important.

    This ignorance regarding devolved taxation allows some in Scotland, including Labour’s Dugdale and the far left to shout about raising the higher rate of tax, whilst remaining completely oblivious to the actual consequences.

    What Scotland has benefited from for the last 9 years is an extremely competent Scottish Government, fighting for Scotland and its people. That is why on Thursday, I’ll use BOTH my votes to help ensure the SNP are re-elected.

    Both votes SNP.

  62. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I think that under EU rules VAT cannot be devolved. It has to remain in the sovereign country and that’s not us, alas”

    That’s correct.

  63. DerekM says:

    Spot on Rev

    Dividends are one of the biggest cons ever.

    It may look good to people with wealth but what they dont get is that taxation money is needed to control inflation so in reality they destroy the fabric of the economy by not paying back the percentage needed to balance the equation.

    Taxation is not so a government can spend that is a lie,no government that prints its own money needs your tax to spend they need it to burn to control inflation.

    And is why i think the working of government should be introduced into our schools so our kids will never be lied to again about how a government is meant to work or have the wool pulled over their eyes by political parties who use taxation as a political weapon to get votes.

  64. scotsbob says:

    It’s because of articles like this that I have become a regular Wings reader

    BOTH VOTES SNP

  65. Harry Scott says:

    Excellent article, I only have two minor quibbles:

    1. The revenue from dividends is collected by UK HMRC, but it’s not quite right say that it’s “lost” to London. It just gets shared out among all the nations via the legacy Barnett formula, so Scotland still gets a share, safeguarded to some degree by the no detriment agreement. It is completely right to say that the revenue is no longer entirely controlled by Holyrood, and that the revenue is reduced overall because of the gap between tax rates on Salaries and Dividends. The policy would result in Tax evasion and everybody loses: both the UK and Scotland so it does easily negate any benefit from raising the higher tax rate in currently devolved Scotland.

    2. GERS still counts dividends paid on Scottish held shares as “Scottish” revenue no matter who actually collects the tax, it always has. Kevin whatsisname won’t be able to use it against the Scottish “deficit” in his graphs.

    GERS is a hypothetical study of Scottish revenue and spending as if it were separated, which of course it isn’t. Revenue relocated to avoid a tax rate change in this way doesn’t really affect GERS directly but it does affect the actual revenue streams that Holyrood controls in the real world which is much more important.

  66. ian says:

    Man in the jar.”Well you learn something new everyday”and so do many of us who wish independence for our own country. But unfortunately there are many of our fellow citizens who are as stupid as the day they were born and unless we can convince them otherwise they will be quite happy to remain that way.

  67. Dr Jim says:

    If you remember when the devolution of income tax was going through parliament the SNP MPs wanted the powers over Evasion and Avoidance devolved

    That of course was voted against by Labour and the Tories in the faint hope the SNP would be as stupid as they hoped they would be and so that this particular scenario would confuse the voters in Scotland

    It has partially worked, the Yoon side believe anything they’re told if they think it might help their case, and the loony lefties are so keen to tax everybody to death just for existing they’d fall for it too

    It might have been a failure of our glorious SNP leaders not to have pointed this trap out much more strongly but I’m sure they had a very good reason for not doing so as they are just great and perfect in every way

    That last part was particularly for our wee troll friends
    Coz I know they just love stuff like that

  68. People Carrier says:

    This is terrific analysis, exactly why I come here instead of the BBC etc. It really is very well explained. There is no doubt the originators of the ‘deal’ would know this possibility and the analysis exposes the stranding of Scotland by Labour; they would gladly walk into this trap, scuppering Scotland for generations, all for the want of power. They care nothing for Scotland, nothing.

  69. Davy says:

    So following the labour or libdem tax models, the ordinary taxpayers could end up paying for the shortfall caused by raising the upper limit, with their being no advantage for the country from paying the extra penny tax rise.

    I believe someone as astute as labours finance and wealth creating minister would have spotted this immediately, shit I forgot that’s Jackie Baillie.

    Good article Stu, keep it up.

  70. Phil Stephenson says:

    You honestly think there’s no hassle at all in becoming, say, a citizen of France rather than a citizen of the UK?

    You don’t have to become a citizen of France to live, work and pay taxes there rather than Scotland.

  71. yerkitbreeks says:

    Incisive articles like this one = maintenance of WoS follower numbers.

    Thanks.

  72. Greannach says:

    I’m sad taxation expert Phil Robertson hasn’t followed up his points made earlier. I was looked forward to a fact-based critique of the matter rather than its dismissal as ‘blethers’.

  73. call me dave says:

    John Beattie on shortbread.

    100% Mortgages.. stories wanted on first one.

    Mine:
    Lochgelly Co-op house two bedrooms flat round the back upstairs very small bathroom little cupboard as kitchen. £400:

    I know(1968) a fair amount!

    I had that saved up and went to see the mannie at the office in the co-op. Anyhoo! He pooh pooh-ed the idea of £400 cash.

    “Och you’ll need some of that to get you both going in life”! was what he said. “How about this”?

    I walked out the office a bit stunned with the deal made. £200 down and £200 still to pay over two years and no interest.

    Elizabeth was astonished when I went to her parent’s house to tell her

    That was the real deal…happy days! 🙂

    PS:
    Indyref2 debate is new reality – so get used to it.

    https://archive.is/DQW11

  74. Shamur says:

    Great info, thanks Rev. Really easy to understand from your explanation and will help me to hit those who come up with that issue as an SNP bad, squarely between the eyes!

  75. Phil Robertson says:

    Rev. Stuart Campbell
    “But you omit to mention that Scotland will still get its share of the non-NSND revenues through the block grant.”

    There is no discernible mechanism for achieving this. Do point me to it. Basic rate is a different subject entirely.
    ——————————
    Two points.
    My information is mostly from SPICe sources i.e. the Scottish Parliament. The block grant continues in its old way with the addition of a mechanism to accommodate changes in the Scottish Rate of Income Tax (SRIT), to quote “There will be a deduction from the Scottish block grant to offset the revenues raised from SRIT.” Other elements of the Barnett formula are, for the time being, unchanged.

    Basic rate of tax is another matter but is is the one that separates the SNP/Tories from the Labour/Liberal proposals.

  76. Richard MacKinnon says:

    What a boring overly long article. Impossible to get through, but I did catch this in last para but one, “For that reason, there’s no inconsistency whatsoever in the SNP having advocated a 50p tax rate in the UK election last year and then declining to impose one in a devolved Scotland with its new tax powers”. Aye that will right.

  77. T.roz says:

    Excellent article, a tax expert was explaining this to gordon Brewster the other day and made it quite clear. He then tried to tell him that labour are putting up the basic rate and only the SNP are keeping rates the same… Brewster couldn’t interrupt him quick enough.

    Not only is this info useful prior to election but it is crucial for the independence campaign. What a massive fuckin con this whole “new improved powers” are.There is absolutely no reason why Scotland shouldn’t be independent and to give ‘some’ power over tax, full of traps is a disgrace. No more pish, vote twice for SNP and let’s start fixing all this unfairness.

  78. Callum says:

    There is also the problem of entrepreneurial relief. Many smaller personal service companies “pay” themselves by accumulating value in the company (paying only a token salary or dividend) and then voluntarily liquidating the company, paying 10% on the remaining assets up to a value of £1.5m

    This is why you’ll see companies named “company001 Ltd”, “company002 Ltd”, at companies house

    of course, guess where this tax ends up? (even for SC registered companies). My accountant has about 450 Ltd companies on the books and he told me that about 1/3 of his clients do this. Given that it’s only worth doing this if the company has over £100k in assets then you get the picture that this is a huge amount of tax revenue lost to Scotland.

  79. Mike Lothian says:

    Don’t most contractors pay themselves minimum wage and then pay themselves using dividends? I.E. they never pay the higher amount and the big chunk of tax they pay will go direct to London

  80. NeoconNat says:

    DerekM: “Taxation is not so a government can spend that is a lie,no government that prints its own money needs your tax to spend they need it to burn to control inflation.”

    Thanks for the information. So instead of paying taxes we can just print unending supplies of money…

    I’m not an economist but it looks like you have something there.

  81. Clootie says:

    I know several people in the Oil & Gas industry who are “Directors” taking a Dividend from the Company ( which is selling their skill to the industry)
    I know others who live abroad in countries which have reciricol tax arrangements with the UK ( and you can guess which part of the UK they will use to calculate agreement)
    Others are already discussing buying a flat in England if the rates go up. They will use the tax saving to pay the mortgage but in the meantime they have an investment delivering rent. On equal time Rotas offshore it is very difficult to argue against the claimed residence address.
    You would also be amazed how many people who live in Scotland but work for a company registered in London who have been allocated a London tax code.

    Many of those in my own industry will not pay the higher tax. Until you have full control over “avoidance” the powers are useless. I’ve given examples from on industry…the devolved powers are a trap in the current form and the Greens/Labour and Rise jumped straight in.

    Taking the moral high ground doesn’t do much for supporting services when the income is hit.

  82. Lorraine says:

    If you are fortunate to have enough retirement income that your State Pension benefit gets taxed, does your tax on it go direct to Westminster?

    This analysis is very illuminating. What a pity people don’t get full information on such matters.

  83. Tony Little says:

    A point of clarification. A few posters have said that Scotland is ‘protected’ due to no detriment and the Barnett formula. So please correct me here BUT …

    As far as I am aware, the basic premise for Barnett remains a calculation of Westminster SPENDING on the devolved areas and NOT on the revenues it raises – through whichever means. So no changes despite Scotland raising some of its taxes directly.

    The other point is the so-called no detriment. As far as I was aware this wold not be the case in respect of Corp tax, NIC, etc. as these are unchanged – they still go to Westminster. As for SRIT this is possibly an area where ND applies.

    I would welcome the clarification.

  84. G H Graham says:

    Business owners also reduce corporation tax liability by buying assets which are supposed to be directly related to business activity.

    You know the sort of gear I’m talking about; £95,000 Range Rover, £2,500 laptop, £3,000 information monitor (aka a television), £3,000 Savile Row uniforms etc. All the VAT will still end up in London, just like now.

    Furthermore, wealthy types who chose to move will simply jack up the cost of their travel expenses which won’t hurt them because these will be used to further offset tax liabilities but the tax raised by these activities (fuelling up, eating Ginsters pasties, etc) will still go to London.

    There are many other mechanisms by which a dependent Scotland will suffer from almost any adjustment in income tax so the only path to a resolution is full sovereign independence.

  85. Clootie says:

    I’ve just seen claims from the minor parties that people cannot move easily if you raise the higher tax rate.

    Have they any ide how many people Offshore can live anywhere the wish. They only commute ONCE every 6 weeks. A house in Loch Lomond is nice but so is one in the Lake District. A flight from France will be paid by the tax saved.

    How many would it take to negate the increase. Scotland needs ALL the powers.

  86. orri says:

    Once you factor in NI contributions including adjusting for the employers contribution so take the combined revenue for someone PAYE you find that our lower tax band is as high as some of the Scandinavian countries we’d like to emulate.

    Quick illustration,

    It starts at 12% at bellow income tax. Then as the 40% band kicks in drops to 2%. The employer contributes 13.8% regardless

    so it’s 32% or 42%, or if you include employers contributions,
    45.8/113.8 = 40.24% and 55.8/113.8% = 49%

    Useful thing NI as it hides just how much tax we really pay.

    The main thing about tax avoidance is that you don’t really want to talk about how to do it or, worse, make it worthwhile.

  87. Ian Sanderson says:

    Thank you Stu…

    Had to read it twice before fully comprehending but I ( think) I get it now….

    Will be sharing this as widely as I am able before tomorrow…

    SNP X 2

  88. Big Jock says:

    just went to see Nicola at the Concert Hall steps. The funniest moment was a bam waiving a Butchers Apron in her face when she was talking. She just said: “See folks that’s democracy in action”. The irony was lost on the Amoeba.

    A homeless guy asked me for change with a leave EU badge on. I said the EU is not the problem it’s the UK. I offered to give him change if he removed the badge and he wondered off confused! I don’t think he even knew why he was wearing it!

  89. Graf Midgehunter says:

    Without touching on the technical explanation from the Rev which was very clear and understandable. Superb..!

    It does highlight the fact that the SNP and in particular J. Swinney were smart enough to see through the set up of the various traps being laid from the treasury in London AND had the sense as well as the guts to resist giving in.

    Buffalo Ruf was probably in on the plans from Davie but there’s no way that Kez/Blis or Rennie would have seen it coming let alone understand what was going on.

    As for the Greens, Rise or Solidarity – there’re all suckers.
    ………………

    By the way, do you remember the EU thingy in the REF-1. We’d become political pygmies because we would have to give up huge amounts of Sovereignity and be slaves to other treaties.

    Well Theresa May seems to have changed her tune:

    “I do not want the European Union to cause the destruction of an older and much more precious union, the union between England and Scotland,” she said.

    May argued that no country had ever been totally sovereign and added that international institutions always required compromises.”

    No dirty fingers, it’s archived. 🙂

    http://archive.is/ztWHz

  90. Kev says:

    Great article Stu, very informative – the only minor quibble would be that Directors’ salaries are an overhead, not a method of profit extraction ie. they reduce the level of profit before tax (net profit) – they are not distributed from profits after tax, like dividends.

  91. crisiscult says:

    My brother had heard something similar regarding tax explained by a tax accountant from Edinburgh on BBC radio recently. Rev explains it extremely clearly though. A friend of a friend does exactly as in the example. He basically works for all intents and purposes like an employee but because he earns over 150k, instead of carrying out the work as an employee, he uses his company to do the work, the money that the other company pays him becomes income for his company, and he takes money out part in a salary and part in dividends.

  92. BobBanker says:

    Surely no true patriotic Scot would stoop so low as to deprive Holyrood of a bit of tax in this way?

  93. K. A. Mylchreest says:

    Even if Scotland had more control over personal taxation (from all sources) how do you know where someone actually lives? E.g. if I don´t like the tax rates in Edinburgh, what´s to stop me giving an address somewhere in England as my official residence.

    All I´d need, surely, is a friend, relative or agency to forward the official bumph, and if I´m seriously rich I could simply rent a tiny flat in somewhere in the South (if I don´t have one already) and arrange for any mail to be forwarded.

    The same of course applies to companies, if corporation tax were ever devolved. Changing a co´s registered office is simply a matter of filling in a form. I know of organisations who have moved their activities from one place to another but never bothered to change their official registered address. So long as there´s someone around to forward the mail it doesn´t matter.

    Nice exposition BTW, there´s no doubt a great deal more to all this than meets the eye …

  94. DerekM says:

    No NC that is just as mad ,its about balance NC ,if a government issues new currency into the system they must tax to balance ,so spending shit loads of cash means higher taxation.

    This is not a bad thing if you can collect the tax and neither is the system we live under the problem arises when the equation cant be balanced due to a tax inbalance.

    But then i dont expect you to understand that as most people believe the lie that tax is for governments to spend and not to keep inflation in check.

  95. velofello says:

    If your HMRC tax office is based in England then your income tax will be credited to England surely?

    So, BBC staff at PQ? BT? “Scottish” Gas? etc etc.

  96. Kennedy says:

    Well done Rev.

    Everyday is a school day.

  97. mjs dundee says:

    The only thing that bothers me much about this article is that people might need to learn that this caper has been costing us a fortune long since. I thought it was general knowledge.

    It is THE main technique by which most personal tax is avoided by those who can. Ye olde capital gains caper.

    The sooner all such is binned and all income is taxed as income the better.

    My guess though is that most of those that can will already be doing so. Esp with Scots generally being a bit canny. So I’m not sure much will change really if SG change rates.

    M.

  98. Capella says:

    On the subject of scams the media are keeping a lid on – Lenathehyena has a detailed article on the Edinburgh PFI/PPP debacle. Worth reminding voters before they go to the polls.

    https://lenathehyena.wordpress.com/2016/04/10/edinburghs-schools-are-falling-down-pfi/

  99. ArtyHetty says:

    Excellent for those of us who are not so good with figures. Thanks.

    John Swinney and Nicola Sturgeon have the measure of things, in total contrast to Labour, and of course we all know that the tories are experts at setting traps of all kinds across these lands.

    Independence is crucial to the survival of Scotland.

    The SNP are doing a sterling job against the odds, let’s hope that is to continue as of Friday.

  100. ArtyHetty says:

    P.S. Nearly all avatars on here are blank, not sure why.

  101. call me dave says:

    Kevin McKenna:

    By 2020, I challenge Nicola Sturgeon to be able to look the hundreds of thousands of Scots living in poverty squarely in the eye and say: “After 13 years of government, my party made your lives better.”
    ———————————————————

    Well the other lot between them had 70+ years and couldn’t do it but they weren’t trying to break the unionist mould on pocket money and limited powers.

    https://archive.is/fQlAE

  102. Bill Steele says:

    This is a very important explanation, Stuart. Why have the Scottish Government and the SNP given it to the voters?
    Is there any way to get this out to the public before tomorrow?

  103. Big Jock says:

    McKenna is missing the point. How can you improve the economy with pocket money. Unless somehow the SNP have become responsible for that and social security benefits. What an erse he is at times.

    The answer is that Nicola would say they have tried in vain to make the UK work for Scotland, and it has failed miserably.

  104. Fiona says:

    This may be the most important post written in the course of this election. I hope everyone will share it as widely as possible before tomorrow’s vote

  105. One_Scot says:

    ‘By 2020, I challenge Nicola Sturgeon to be able to look the hundreds of thousands of Scots living in poverty squarely in the eye and say: “After 13 years of government, my party made your lives better.”’

    I could maybe subscribe to that ‘After 13 years of Independence’, but to demand that after 13 years of being part of a corrupt and repressive union, well the mans head is clearly full of broken bottles.

  106. Iain More says:

    I must take issue with the graph as that is clearly not an exponential one, exponential Brit Nat hysteria is closer to the truth.

    OT

    Ran into a mate whilst walking the dog and he was muttering about todays National which I didn’t buy, the mate was muttering and not the dog that is. If I have this correct what they put out amongst its articles was no less than a two page spread from McKenna for Yes voters to vote SLAB. Mendacious is the Brit Nat Press. Sleekit in the extreme.

    It must be obvious if it wasn’t obvious already that we need a purely pro Scottish and Scottish owned Yes Newspaper, The National isn’t and has shown its true colours in this Election campaign. It clearly cant be trusted come the next Referendum on Indy nor can the Sunday Herald. We also need a pro Scottish and Pro Yes TV channel that can reach a wider audience. I think if we don’t have that then we are fucked before that Referendum is even called.

    All the National has done has change my mind about how I vote tomorrow. I was going to vote for Jean Urquhart on the list in H&I but now I am going to vote SNP 1&2. I will of course have to make my apologies to Jean about my change of mind.

  107. katherine hamilton says:

    McKenna can challenge all he likes but the fact is, as this thread shows, we don’t have the powers for the wholesale changes that will be needed.

    The more I think about it, the more likely is Indyref2 in the next 5 years. The pretendy powers will cause the SNP to “fail”, as they are intended.

    Decline in support is a real possibility, hence the push for Indy starting during the summer. I reckon the SNP planners have over 50% showing support for Independence in private polling. Hence the drive over the summer.

    It’s coming.

  108. Les Wilson says:

    A great subject Stu, and very well put, something that really needed said. I would also take consideration of what
    Andrew McLean says, he too is also knowledgeable in the subject.

    All this is just one of the ways Scotland gets screwed by Westminster, particularly the treasury who I believe is our worst enemy and Westminster’s greatest asset.

    Been that way for 300 years, dealing with them means you have to count your fingers after every dealing with them.

    But we know there are many, many ways they deceive us. To my knowledge no one has actually tallied the amounts that we know of, never mind those we have yet to be highlighted.

    If we did have a close assessment of all this, it would show just how better off we would be, by being out of this “Union”, which is really a form of occupation by stealth.

    To lose Scotland would really put them in the sick bin, and their economy would at least for a while, be crushed.
    Due to these circumstances it would be no less than they deserve.

  109. Inverclyder says:

    OT

    Pictures paint a thousand words….

    Look at the pictures before the change them to guage the support….

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election-2016-scotland-36193302

  110. Dorothy Devine says:

    OT Just back from Nicola on the Steps – excellent and the bloke with the Union flag just looked stupid.

    Happily , I caught up with Ronnie and Mitchell and am now the proud possessor of an SNP Manifesto inscribed to me by Nicola – all thanks to Ronnie.

    The place was hoachin’ with the usual suspects from BBBC, STV and the DR and Herald – I still reckon Toodleoothenoo is going to explode one day and make anawfy mess.

  111. marydoll says:

    I recently started work for a company Head Office in england.
    I tried to get my tax code changed to Scottish code , but they wouldn’t as HMRC hadn’t informed them.

    How many people are caught like that?

  112. yesindyref2 says:

    The thing to look at is that as things stand there are people actually earning as in PAYE over £150,000 per year right now, in spite of the additional rate of 5p in the £. This is spite of such mechanisms and others being already in existence.

    I think the reason for this is like “well, it’s only an extra 5p so I can’t be bothered (inertia), and anyway since I’m a high earner it’s only right I contribute more to society (virtue)”.

    Tax specialists or psychologists, same thing, have identified 49p as the highest rate of tax people don’t complain too much about, and hence don’t bother taking action to avoid paying. Sturgeon will have to be careful if and when she and Swinney do put up the additional rate, I’d suggest 48p tops.

    So the main reason for 50p being a bad idea is because with mechanisms already in place even within the UK, many more people and companies, and perhaps even public bodies, will be motivated to take action to “split” earnings into income tax-paying PAYE, plus other methods for the excess. From this point of view the Greens at 60p are likely to see a near 100% success rate in motivating people to avoid it, with therefore a near complete removal of extra tax from the additional rate.

    Even the 1p in the £ that Labour and the LibDems love so much will incentivise more people to move to a “tax efficient” method of earning, as many will see that as “tax robbery”.

    Oh, one really really really nasty consequence of that motivating more people to avoid the 50p additional rate. While they’re at it, they may as well avoid all the earnings at higher rate as well. So their salary goes from say £200,000 to £43,000. All that tax lost on £107,000 at higher rate = £21,400 per additional rate tax payer, plus that at the additional rate.

  113. Capella says:

    @ Iain More – I’ve just read my online copy of The National and Kevin McKenna does not say he will vote for Labour, nor does he encourage others to do so. He says he is undecided between Labour, SNP and RISE and will give it more thought overnight.

    The National has a striking double page advert for the SNP on pn the first pages you see when you open it. It has excellent articles from Wee Ginger Dug, Peter Geoghegan and Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh as well other good articles supporting the SNP or the YES movement.

    I don’t care whether other people read it or not, but it isn’t right to misinform potential readers. Tell your friend to go back and check his facts.

  114. Hamish McTavish says:

    @marydoll 2:56

    Phone your tax office and ask them to change it. They will then tell your employer (probably).

  115. heedtracker says:

    All the National has done has change my mind about how I vote tomorrow. I was going to vote for Jean Urquhart on the list in H&I but now I am going to vote SNP 1&2. I will of course have to make my apologies to Jean about my change of mind.

    The National’s been quite a clever media fraud on Scotland, probably one of their cruellest frauds too. To be fair, its probably the one reason the Herald tories that own it even allowed it to get going.

    Rancid The Graun’s got a hideous last Holyrood election up yours Delors to Scotland today aswell. Even if youre a red and blue tory in your Scotland region, how come you’ll never see a blog like this today from WoS, anywhere in our tory BBC led media?

    Its a very dirty business UKOK politics.

  116. Iain More says:

    The thing about dividends not highlighted by the Press and Media is that most of FTSE listed Companies are borrowing money to pay those dividends. It is a minority that actually have the cash in reserve to pay out on dividends at all. The dividend is also a construct to artificially maintain a companies share price in most cases.

    It is obvious to anybody with half a brain that this isn’t sustainable. The end result is always tears and grief. Companies will pass on the costs of their profligacy and bad management by sacking employees and or cutting wages and or cutting health and safety and or raiding pension funds.

  117. dakk says:

    Great article Stuart highlighting yet another Westminster smoke and mirrors scam on Scotland.

    This important discovery will be invaluable in rebuffing the Yoon narrative of ‘SNP Timid’.

    I have a feeling there will be more traps waiting to be discovered in Smith lite.

    It may even win over a few soft NO s who still trust Westminster not to exploit Scotland.

    Come on Phil Robertson and Richard MacKinnon, you wouldn’t like Scotland to be cheated like this by Westminster would you ?

    Would you ?

  118. Saor Alba says:

    The ONLY way forward is an INDEPENDENT Scotland free of the corruption of Unionism.

    A MUST read over on Wee Ginger Dug, is his piece on the re-awakening of the Unicorn.

    Remember, tomorrow at the polls – SNP x 2 for a better Scotland.

  119. Andrew McLean says:

    O/T I see councillor Terry Kelly has been booted out of the Labour party cause he is a very naughty boy, allegedly a racist, anti Semitic and didn’t like Jewish Americans, a nutter on other words.
    kezia doesn’t know who he is apparently!

  120. yesindyref2 says:

    I noticed a post about why does media not investigate.

    Perhaps the reason is a certain amount of embarassment, because I think a lot of presenters and journalists and columnists receive their pay via LLCs and SLCs, which is effectively the same as the dividend system written about. Some of them do have expenses and are paid I think per article, not by the hour. And have multiple sources of income from different employers. Legitimate in many cases, but potentially able to hack off readers and viewers!

    So perhaps they, cough, leave well alone rather than reap the whirlwind.

  121. NeoconNat says:

    indyref2: “since I’m a high earner it’s only right I contribute more to society (virtue)”

    You having a laff?

    I don’t know anybody that thinks like that and I’m not sure being robbed makes you virtuous.

  122. yesindyref2 says:

    Lastly dividends. In the past it used, in theory, to be you paid yourself your income every month / weel, so if as a limited company you were on that LEL or ST your tax and NI were £0. But if you wanted to pay yourself more you were really supposed to pay it out as a dividend as you went along and therefore pay income tax – as you went along.

    This changed with the self-assessment I think, and I think also it’s changed from a company point of view as it’s regarded as a director’s loan account which you have 9 months or 12 months to repay which then gets done as a dividend at end of company year with 9 months to pay corporation tax, and the income tax at time of self-assessment.

    This is off the top of my head and probably not totally accurate but it gives the idea. Quite rightly administration of a company especially a small company was made easier but it has the side-effect of allowing a degree of tax delay, if not avoidance.

  123. Legerwood says:

    “marydoll says:
    4 May, 2016 at 2:56 pm
    I recently started work for a company Head Office in england.
    I tried to get my tax code changed to Scottish code , but they wouldn’t as HMRC hadn’t informed them.

    How many people are caaught like that?”
    ——————————————

    Probably quite a few since this is the first year of the new system and that is why no changes to the tax should be made until we find out just how much SRIT will bring in and how many are missing from the system. For this reason alone the SNP were right to leave things until they know for sure what the actual amount raised will be rather than some notional guesstimate.

    Labour and LibDems have bandied about sums that will be raised if they raise the rate by 1p but in truth they don’t know until the new system has been tried. Also they do not seem to have taken into account the amount the HMRC will charge them for the work they do in administering the changes.

    On the subject of the article, is this what Sir Philip Green was doing when he took hundreds of millions out of BHS in ‘dividends’?

  124. Kenny Ritchie says:

    The SNP yet again proving why they’re the only credible party to govern a devolved Scotland.

  125. Iain More says:

    @capella

    I am only going to quote what was said to me by someone I trust implicitly, according to him in his rant about McKenna about McKenna and that was that he McKenna regarded it as safe to vote for Labour again.

    By no stretch of the imagination can it be regarded to be safe to vote Labour again. McKenna’s claim obviously stuck in my mates head even if as you say the rest of the paper might have been SNP friendly. There are those that would dispute that no doubt.

    The publicity that the National gave to Coburn earlier in the week was probably the last straw for me.

    You actually say yourself that McKenna is as you read it undecided between SNP, RISE and ahem Labour. Labour shouldn’t even be mentioned in the same sentence as a potential vote in this election. A Party that is tripping over the Tories in a squalid race to get Yoon votes.

    Perception is everything and I wont be buying the National again even if I do enjoy reading the Wee Ginger Dug. I don’t read Peter Geoghegan or Tasmina. I will fund/donate to the Wee Ginger Dug on line but I wont buy the National again. That will be zero newspapers coming into the house either retail or on line.

  126. dakk says:

    Whilst on subject of Tax,I have noticed when I am using HMRC RTI software for PAYE returns that every field except the tax code field is blank.

    Every week I have to remove the emergency non Scottish tax code in order to insert the Scottish prefix tax code.

    If one inadvertently omits to do this(quite easy for me),then is it possible the IT would be allocated as a credit to rUK Income Tax receipts ?

    It’s not like I don’t trust our Westminster betters or anything.It’s just a thought.

  127. yesindyref2 says:

    Damn, wish I hadn’t started. Search for “micro-entities” and a whole load of “interesting” stuff comes to light, including the 2013 companies act (or similar) which made life easier for us, supported also now by HMRC as well as Company’s House.

    David Leask embarked on a crusade against SLPs being used for Russian tax avoidance purposes, but the rUK LLCs are also used as such. The idea is that the UK Government should have tightned up on these as has been promised since about 2008 and carried on by the Tories.

    But in 2012 there was an EU Directive to make countries make life easier for micro-entities as quite rightly it’s recognised that a large amount of employment perhaps as high as 50% comes through these. That would likely have made it difficult perhaps impossible for the UK Gov to tighten up on SLCs, LLCs and Private Limited Companies. The UK, Portugal and 3 outher EU countries put it into effect.

    @NeoconNat
    Bit of a leftie remark that NCN. It’s reported that high earners do indeed say that.

  128. Free Scotland says:

    Good that the unionist press hacks dip into Wings from time to time – maybe they’ll learn something.

  129. yesindyref2 says:

    @Iain More
    I read Kevin McKenna’s article in The National and he was quite clear, well, confused, as to whether he should vote Labour, SNP or RISE, and was going to think about it overnight. What he did was question whether Labour were worth voting for again, but his conclusion was that there wasn’t a conclusion.

  130. Proud Cybernat says:

    ‘Penny For Education’ – he could do with one:

    http://www.imgur.com/ik3Hv61

  131. Giving Goose says:

    Re Terry Kelly being suspended by Labour.
    Here’s a piece from his blog;

    “I represent Ward 4 Paisley North West. I’m a Socialist who believes in equality, peace and the redistribution of wealth, I oppose Racism, Sexism, Sectarianism, Nationalism and any kind of discrimination. Best wishes for a Socialist future.”

    Can anyone spot the obvious mistake(s)?

  132. Free Scotland says:

    @yesindyref2

    If Kevin McKenna doesn’t know by now that labour are finished in Scotland, it’s time he had THICK tattooed on his forehead.

  133. heedtracker says:

    yesindyref2 says:
    4 May, 2016 at 3:30 pm
    @Iain More
    I read Kevin McKenna’s article in The National and he was quite clear, well, confused,

    Its not confused. The below comment says National’s a “pro independence newspaper” but SLabour are ofcourse fully anti independence.

    The day before the Holyrood election that could well be the end of Scottish independence, National front page has Kevin Mackennan saying vote SLabour.

    “Are you happier with Tom Gordon and David Torrance?” They’re honest to god out and proud UKOK toryboy yoons.

    Dave McEwan Hill says:
    3 May, 2016 at 12:50 pm
    Exactly, Heedtracker. It is a pro independence newspaper and it promotes pro independence parties.It has been over generous to RISE probably because its young writers favour RISE themselves. They are allowed to. I was in the SNP fifty years ago when the SNP was getting less than 1% of the vote. I understand where they are.
    Are you happier with Tom Gordon and David Torrance?
    The National has to speak to a wide audience. It is on the right side. It deserves support.

  134. One_Scot says:

    As I have said before, for me the jury is still out on the National and that I would give them until the election before a judgement was made.

    No matter what your view of them is, one thing is certain, if Scotland does return Nicola with a majority, it will be despite the National, not because of it.

    Having said that, it is now more important than ever that we all pull together tomorrow to deliver that majority, because if we don’t, then, not only may we not see a second referendum in our life time, but Scotland may never see one at all.

    Vote SNP twice.

  135. Greannach says:

    I’m confused by party leaders’ pictures on the BBC website. There are a load of people holding up signs saying “Ruth Davidson” but I’d swear her name isn’t on the ballot paper here in Perthshire. If “Ruth Davidson” is a party rather than a person, I don’t think they’re on the ballot paper either.

    Confused marketing.

  136. Richard MacKinnon says:

    dakk,
    I dont know what you are talking about when you say “you wouldn’t like Scotland to be cheated like this by Westminster would you ?,”Cheated? How? Sounds like another grievance to me.
    What I do know is that it is crazy to have different income tax rates within one country. Obviously if such madhouse circumstances were introduced the people in the part with the higher rates would move their business to the other part where they pay less. Maybe there is a wee gem of blindingly obvious logic to be learnt there.

  137. Petra says:

    Another brilliant article Stuart: So enlightening but isn’t it just absolutely diabolical that we (I) have to get an education … our information from Wings. Maybe you should think of attempting to educate some others by sending a copy of this to the three financial Better Together whizz kids, Dugdale, Baillie and Rennie, and the numerous jaundiced rags in Scotland.

    @ Iain R says at 11:18 am … ”So many people in darkness in Scotland, I guess that is why we lost.”

    Well that’s it in a nutshell Iain. If any one of the countless so-called Scottish journalists took it upon themselves, had a brainstorm say like Chrichton of the Daily Record, to inform everyone of the facts relating to, as examples, risks of Trident, concerted depopulation of Scotland, McCrone Report, stolen seas, Scottish assets, who owns Scotland and so on we’d be Independent in a heartbeat.

    Whatever the case we will be Independent sooner than later and have control over broadcasting. When that time comes and the truth comes out there’ll be no hiding place for the bunch, parcel, of well-known manipulative liars: Journalists, politicians, TV presenters and pretendy historians. Itular Scots that have been and continue to sell Scotland down the river. Every last one of them should be hanging their heads in shame.

    SNP x 2

  138. Andrew McLean says:

    O/T
    I see a UKIP holocaust denier has had the cheek to walk onto the stage where Nicola Sturgeon was speaking, to wave a union flag, I think Nicola, member of the Privy councillor holder of the Great Seal of Scotland, appointed by the Queen, who incidentally as head of the British Army that helped liberate the concentration camps, whose Special Air Service regiment after the war, so horrified by the murder of its personnel and by the actions of the Nazis went on without orders or pay and captured Nazi leaders in hiding.
    So this I notice this UKIP holocaust denier also hates the Queen and the British Army, but bet he is UKOK, on the scum Scottish media tonight !

  139. bjsalba says:

    Might be intereting to look at USA tax system.

    Earned and unearned at the same rate. All in one return. Well sort of – State Return and Federal Tax return. And if you live in one state and work in another, one for each.

    Still, it avoids the earned/unearned tax dodgers.

  140. Dr Jim says:

    Kevin McKenna challenging Nicola Sturgeon

    Who does he think he is, silly man

    I challenge Kevin McKenna to get through a whole sentence without changing his mind by the end of it

    Harrumph cough clears throat sniffs splutters then makes stupid statement that McWhirter entirely agrees with up until HE writes a piece and totally disagrees with it, both men write according to who’s paying them
    They’d write for the cleansing and describe the positive case for Shite if they were paid to do it

    Anyway she’s had her cheeky wee Minnie Minx face on all day so she’s up to something
    You can always spot it

  141. Andrew McLean says:

    Tomorrow is the acid test for the National, if it truly supports independence then tomorrows front page will be outstanding!

  142. davidb says:

    Meantime, over at the Grauniad, Kez reckons its the anti-Semitism row that’s hurting her chances. A quick google search and Wikipedia has the 2011 census population of Jews in Scotland at 5778. Obviously thats enough list votes to tip the Ruth Davison Party into second place. Or some such spin.

    Still, Kez is going to keep smiling. She only has to lead the Branch for 2 more days.

  143. davidb says:

    Duh! 5887. Numerical dyslexia!

  144. galamcennalath says:

    Andrew McLean says:

    “Tomorrow is the acid test for the National, if it truly supports independence then tomorrows front page will be outstanding!”

    Good point!

    My prediction? They will say VOTE SNP 1 + AnOther 2.

  145. Kevin Mc Kenna must be having a laugh.
    Does he seriously see Kezia Dugdale as FM?
    For that matter, what do the Tory Grandees think of cheery chubby cheeks Davidson?
    I cannot imagine circumstances when I would consider voting for either of them.
    Got the crisps, fruit and nut choc and Buzet in.
    It’s an all nighter tomorrow.
    Is it too much to ask for a repeat of UKGE May 2015?

  146. Robert Louis says:

    Greannach,

    Aye, over here in Edinburgh, we have been bombarded with leaflets telling us, don’t vote Libdem, Labour or SNP, vote Ruth Davidson. The fact they are from the Tories is almost a secret.

    Must check with the EC to find out when this ‘Ruth Davidson’ party was registered.

    Seriously, the Tories are so freaking ashamed of what they do, have done and believe in, that they only put their name in teeny tiny print, at the foot of one page, even here in Edinburgh South.

  147. msean says:

    That seems so easy to do, clearly either the opposition know this and are trying to exploit it or they really are just stupid when they speak of upping tax.

  148. Proud Cybernat says:

    “I challenge Kevin McKenna to get through a whole sentence without changing his mind by the end of it.

    Harrumph cough clears throat sniffs splutters then makes stupid statement that McWhirter entirely agrees with up until HE writes a piece and totally disagrees with it, both men write according to who’s paying them.”

    Indeed. As Upton Sinclair observed:

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”

    BOTH VOTES SNP

  149. Robert J. Sutherland says:

    yesindyref2,

    I don’t see why an avowedly pro-indy columnist like McKenna could possibly consider for even a microsecond giving either of his votes to Labour, who (despite his rosy-tinted musings) clearly remain incorrigible. (Jeez, they’re even competing with the Tories for the Orangist vote.)

    The only positive gloss that could possibly be put on this is an attempt by The National to attract-in some potential Labour voters, then convert them. But to what? No-hopers RISE?

  150. Big Jock says:

    I think Kez’s Anti-Caledoniaism is the problem!

    Not to mention:

    Anti-Saltireism
    Anti-Snpism
    Anti-Referendism
    Anti-Democratism

  151. Thepnr says:

    “What I do know is that it is crazy to have different income tax rates within one country.”

    I agree, until Scotland has Independence and can work with ALL taxes under their control, adjustment of Income Tax only is a poisoned chalice.

  152. Vestas says:

    davidb said :

    “Meantime, over at the Grauniad, Kez reckons its the anti-Semitism row that’s hurting her chances. A quick google search and Wikipedia has the 2011 census population of Jews in Scotland at 5778.”

    Yes & you’ll find that the vast majority of them reside in the Eggman’s old constituency. His membership of ultra right-wing (Israeli/zionist supporting of course) organisations like The Henry Jackson Society were the reason he won East Renfrewshire in the first place!

    I’m sure SLAB could find someone else to promote Israeli interests in that area – when Blair was in power memdership of the “Friends of Israel” group was compulsory if you wanted to be anything other than a pleb in the party…

  153. Proud Cybernat says:

    Coburn being given the middle finger:

    http://www.imgur.com/5VVmNFd

  154. Big Jock says:

    I’m disppointed that wee Ruth the truth, hasn’t tweeted the postal votes yet. Surely she always knows how they are going!

  155. galamcennalath says:

    Anti this, anti that. It’s the truth! Why are the Unionists so anti?

    Why aren’t they pro something?

    It might seem reasonable to suppose they are pro Union, or pro Westminster. However, when did you last hear a Unionist give a positive case for anything?

    Everything in their world seems to be defined by what they are against, not what they want.

  156. call me dave says:

    A timely reminder from Hark the Herald to us sweaties on the
    ‘eve of destruction’. ( Barry McGuire: 1964 )

    Oil slump blamed for “worrying signs” in Scotland’s economy
    ————————————————————–
    If only we were getting the tax on it but wait…!
    Were getting FA! The real CMD is pocketing it all.

    https://archive.is/yoQRT

    SNP x 2

  157. Big Jock says:

    Vestas -Correct

    If you are pro-Palestine as I am. Does that make me anti- semitic? Israel continues to get away with attrocities under the watchful gaze of the good old US. It has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with facism!

  158. Big Jock says:

    Yes Dave -How can our economy suffer with a drop in something that we never had in the first place. BBC’s fantasy politics.

  159. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Duh. Some people still don’t get it. The National is not an SNP pamphlet. It is a newspaper that supports independence. So does RISE, the Greens and Solidarity. Kevin McKenna is member of the Labour Party who supports independence. He is allowed to do so.

    Today’s National is excellent.It has a front page of general interest as is sensible in a newspaper hoping to sell to wide audience. Pages 2 and 3 are huge SN advert. Page 10 is all about Plaid Cymru and its campaign for more powers. Pages 12 and 13 have Kevin McKenna excoriating Labour and pointing our Labour in Scotland has to adopt independence.

    On page 14 WGD disemblowels Neil Oliver. Page 15 has a silly Buffalo Ruth photo and promotes Nicola’s public Glasgow rally tpday. Next page has a profile of Glasgow Kelvin from the highly respected Peter Geoghegan which “shows that independence is not off the agenda”. Next two pages underlines that Labour’s only hope in Glasgow is list seats. Next two pages are encouraging (for the SNP)accounts from the Northern Isles. Over page is Tasmina featuring Nicola. Then four pages of great letters.

    Sounds like unionist rag to me! Sounds like the people attacking the National either haven’t read it or just don’t understand

  160. Inverclyder says:

    davidb @ 4:37pm

    She probably means that the comments by Red Ken are causing people to reconsider their votes.

    Nothing to do with the catalogue of lies and Jackie Baillienomics calculations on tax and spending, more lies, false claims, a bit more lying, false statistics, the fact that they have nothing left to give, No Policies, changing policies mid policy and generally being crap at being crap.

    That and the fact that Labour stood side by side with the Tories campaigning against the people of Scotland during and after Indyref1. Scotland does not forget in a hurry.

    Next she’ll be claiming that the bus crash of a vote for Labour will be due to anti gay protests from Labour voters who are against that sort of thing.

    Deluded? No, she’s just a puppet.

    Only 1 day left for her as “Party Leader” before she’s stabbed in the back by Sarwar and a new dawn of mediocrity and irrelevance begins for Scottish Labour.

    Tick Tock!

  161. Clootie says:

    Paying your tax in Scotland at a higher rate or not does not prevent the spend on Trident / Wars/ Aircraft carriers / Astute class submarines / Westminster rebuild / the Scottish Office / cross rail / HS2 etc etc.

    Only Independence will enable the Tax take to be spend on things which will significantly improve the lives of our citizens. My main objection to tax in general is how it is being spent. I would pay more tax if it was to end the need for Foodbanks instead of WMDs.

    The current tax intake is not the problem it is how it is being spent.
    We have been given a little bit more leash. They have released the brake on the flexi lead – don’t be like Labour / LibDems / Greens / Rise etc and walk into the trap.

    The more Westminster cuts the more they will tax Scots. It is just another variation of bleeding us dry.

    The tax powers are a variation on the tax tokens given to miners decades ago. An illusion of income because it could only be spent in the owners shop.

  162. yesindyref2 says:

    @Heed (and @Robert J Sutherland)
    Just looked online at The National front page and yes, it has “It might be safe again to vote Labour again but will enough of them back a yes vote?

    Which isn’t good. It is possible it’s playing the “get Labour to go Indy line” which would be game set and match for Indy, but Dugdale isn’t going to do that. Not what we want from The National front page day before the election, so yeah, it’s looking dodgy.

    I agree tomorrow will be the final verdict on it. Either it has Sturgeon all over its front page “Vote SNP both votes if you want any chance of Indy ref 2” or words to that effect, or it’s as crook as a vegan smiling in an abattoir.

  163. One_Scot says:

    By all means stick up for the National, just don’t make others out to be stupid who don’t agree with you.

  164. NeoconNat says:

    Dave McEwan: “Sounds like the people attacking the National either haven’t read it or just don’t understand”

    Bang on. We don’t understand why so many could be fooled by the owner.

  165. Vestas says:

    Big Jock – my starting point is as an atheist. I honestly couldn’t care less what imaginary masters people wish to believe in as long as they don’t force those views upon others.

    The USA in theory is a secular state. The reality is that if you are not Christian or Jewish then you are rarely accepted into mainstream society, especially in southern/mid-western states. Israel exerts a disproportional influence due to the AIPAC which will break a potential presidential candidate if they don’t sign up to the “Israel can do no wrong” brigade.

    Israel is a racist & bigoted state which murders hundreds of innocent people every year & imprisons thousands without trial, many of them children.

    Despite the odious Netanyahu’s ravings he is NOT the leader of the world’s Jews. He is the leader of a nation who only believe in murdering those who oppose them now. Imprisoning them in ghettos for nearly 70 years clearly wasn’t “harsh” enough. The mind boggles, it really does.

    All Jews are NOT Israelis just as all muslims aren’t Iranian or Saudi (both of those countries are just as bad as Israel).

    We digress & I humbly apologise to Stuart as I suspect these comments will result in a flood of Israeli astroturfers. They usually do 🙁

  166. yesindyref2 says:

    @Dave McEwan Hill
    The National has been giving priority to RISE and Greens for weeks, months. But as we’ve argued until we’re yellow and black in the face, splitting the list vote could deny the SNP an overall majority, which could mean Cameron telling the minority First Minster and her Government to eff off when she / they ask for the next Section 30 Order for Indy Ref 2.

    And on top of that the MSM will be spluttering with joy and delirium as they drink champagne and pink gin and celebrate another 307 years of the Union, as the “SNP is on its way down in Scotland” hits the headlines.

    After this election is the time for them to push the wonderful diversity of the Pro-Indy grassroots, first we need to be able to actually get another flaming referendum when it’s needed, otherwise the grassroots will have nothing to be green about, and wither and die into a brown compost heap, suitable for growing us vegetables.

    So the message from them should also be SNP + SNP, if they genuinely care about Independence for Scotland.

  167. Greg Beekman says:

    It’s actually worse than that, Stu.

    Some big financial companies will only ’employ’ you as a contractor if your company is registered in England & Wales. So if your company is registered in Ireland, they won’t take you on until you set up a new one in England (happened to a friend of mine).

    I presume it’s because the big financial companies’ lawyers only understand English law and don’t want the hassle of dealing with different legal systems.

    So if you live in Scotland but can only get work in London, you need to set up a company in England. Scotland loses out again…

  168. Albaman says:

    Kevin McKenna ?,
    I cannot fully trust a man, who cannot even trust himself on a decision,such as this one he writes about in today’s National.

  169. Albaman says:

    Kevin McKenna,
    “Beware the enemy within”, McLean and Burgess style,what he’s at is trying to create devisivions,
    He’s STILL a Labour man, and yearns for them to return.

  170. Thepnr says:

    Well tomorrow will be a bit late I’d guess for more SNP BAD front pages from the BUM. I think most reading Wings believed it would be an all out onslaught for the last few weeks.

    To be fair it probably has but all but one have been damp squibs, I think that shows just how ineffective the media are now in Scotland.

    The only effective piece of propaganda as far as I can see is for Indy supporters to split their vote between SNP and another Indy supporting party. For sure it has resulted in dividing the message given out on the Indy supporting blogs and this has pissed off more than a few people on both sides.

    I doubt though that much damage has been done other than hurt feelings, I believe the election result will pan out pretty much as it would have done without all the acrimony.

    Greens/Rise/Solidarity are as likely to gain list votes from Labour and Lib Dems as they are the SNP, admittedly those gained from the SNP will be larger numerically as they have the largest support. It would be funny though if this backfired completely on Labour and they were to lose a lot of list votes to “more left wing” parties resulting in more Greens and less Labour list MSP’s.

    Rise and Solidarity I’m afraid have missed an opportunity to garner support from SNP voters and instead put them off. I hope that bridges can be mended between now and the council elections in 2017.

    I’ve said many times that Independence is my only priority at this time. When the next referendum comes we will need to work together with all that support Indy. There should be no party politics when that comes around.

  171. Andrew McLean says:

    Labour score mad own goal over easily misconstrued or downright racist comments on Israel, count to 10, then those with the political acumen of a drunk goldfish will go on record saying I am a SNP supporter and see me I hate Israel and the horrible things they do, they might even say I hate Jewish influence. Now their big gobs have not uttered a peep in months about this subject, but suddenly they see a opertunity the night before the election to say to any Jewish supporters we are a bunch of arses too!
    Well hears a valid comment I hate Scots because they waged an illegal war, sided with America and killed Muslims in thousands, bloody Jocks!

  172. Al Dossary says:

    I have posted similar comments before, but for those unaware of the sums of money that are / will be lost to the Scottish taxbase, let us consider an old collegue of mine, 25 year old Smoggie from Teeside.

    Smogggie is an instrument technician on the new Claire Ridge hookup. Now let us assume that Smoggie is getting 1 years work out of the hook-up, as a self employed technician on the rate of £500 per day limited company. Over the course of the year with travel days and ovetime let us round it to £100k in payment from his “client”

    On top of the £100k he will receive £17.5k in VAT, from which he pays HMRC a flat rate of around £12k. Now we must remember that Smoggie lives in a once beautiful village called Ingleby-Barwick with the hordes of other guys working in all the big paying jobs all over the word – it is a closed shop in the extreme. Due to this geographical quirk all of Smoggies tax will go to our Lords and Masters in London.

    Now Smoggie has a beautiful wife called Smoggette who also happens to be a minority shareholder in the company. They each take £10k a year in salary which brings the company profits down from £105k to £85k. On that £85k the company pays approximately 21k corporation tax, bringing the company profits down to £64k.

    Smoggie and his lovely wife can now take almost the whole amount in dividends, and pay the princely amount of 7% dividend tax on their dividends.

    Net take to Westminster from the £117k company earnings is around £40k, net take to Smoggie and Smoggette is around £60k. Net take top the Scottish economy is the money he spends on beer, hotels, Taxis and Kebabs in Aberdeen on his overnight stays to and from the platform.

    Note I have not even taken into account all the various legal and illegal dodges that Smoggie will be using such as his brand new Audi RX8, all the dodgy taxi receipts and all the Eastern Air flight tickets that he changes from economy to Business class on PDF before submitting his expense claims to his accountant.

    And finally, it is not just Smoggie – there are probably 200+ like him on Clair Ridge as well as another 200+ on the new Montrose project, as well as those left on Solan from last year. None of them paying a penny in tax to the Scottish coffers, despite the fact that they spend more than half of their year working in “Scotland”, which were it to be any other EU country they would be paying their tax to that country as well as the UK under dual taxation agreements.

  173. Tinto Chiel says:

    That was a really good article, Rev, though I had to read it twice to understand it (my fault, not yours). Your last sentence is crystal clear, though. I’m sure MSM will cover it all tonight 😯

    @Robert Louis and Greannach.

    Yes, I’ve been getting lots of Ruthie’s electoral tosh through my letter box, and last week in the Callendar area, sixty miles from me, I saw several giant posters in farmers’ fields. Where is the money coming from? Gosh, I do hope every thing is above board as far as her electoral funding is concerned. Maybe that’s why she has been a bit more sullen and testy recently. After all, wouldn’t want a C4 investigation, would she?

    And no mention of the Conservative Party on the literature? Ah the Tories, the hate that dare not speak its name.

  174. mike cassidy says:

    OT

    Oh, feck!

    McTernan is offering advice to the Democrats.

    http://archive.is/eLBiP#selection-2983.1-3352.2

  175. Valerie says:

    Good piece, Rev. I kinda had a grasp of it, but this lays it out properly. Have to say, SNP haven’t really been very clear in explaining this, preferring to just focus on not hammering the poor.

    Regarding Mr hot cold McKenna. He is just blowing smoke up any available orifice. He takes us for mugs. Big mistake.

    Common space having ANOTHER pop at Nicola. Why any Indy supporter would support that crowd is beyond me.

    Division being their main goal.

  176. Andrew Mclean says:

    38 degrees having a breakdown of party manifestos with the unbiased Mr Bell, Jesus wept

  177. CameronB Brodie says:

    Giving Goose said @ 11.29am;

    If you built affordable housing in the quantities that are required, then this would undermine the very industry that the UK economy depends on.

    I suggested during the run-up to the first indyref, that the value of sterling is very much predicated on house prices and the inflationary effects of constrained land supply in the south east.

    There are other environmental ‘supply side’ problems England faces, which Scotland is not affected by directly but which ultimately impact negatively on Scotland’s development rate and potential. Scotland’s health, wealth and happiness is undermined by England’s environmental limitations. And a revolving door between lobby firms and the Mother of All Parliaments.

    I’ve been out of the game for too long to comment objectively in any greater detail.

    As I suggested the other night though, England’s future does not look too rosy.

  178. Andy.D says:

    Jesus feckin Christ, what next, Rev help me out here, we are slashing welfare,imposing bedroom tax etc etc, but we could get money back from the people earning 150k +. Is this right? I can take most of my salary as Dividends then pay at 38.1% Tax Rate that goes to London we get shee-ite. Secondly if that is legal now even at 45% upper Tax Rate they can defer part or most of their salary to Dividends, Tax at 38.1% saving them thousands probably and I believe they don’t pay National Insurance either at that kind of salary. God we are so better together but more to the point why are we letting them away with it. As for the toon Parties this is a trap door to get us to implement their ideas that they would not do so SNP Bad comes out again. SNP x2 EU OUT, OUT ,OUT.

  179. Orri says:

    http://archive.is/Tg9s9

    Apparently it doesn’t make a blind bit of difference if we return another SNP majority. Cameron is simply going to deny there’s any mandate according to an unamed source. Guess we should all get back in our box, stop all this nonsense and vote for a proper party.

  180. mike cassidy says:

    re McTernan advising the Democrats.

    Whatever could he mean by this!

    All elections can be thrown away if you work hard enough at it.

  181. yesindyref2 says:

    @Thepnr
    Yes, Indy is the priority, all other politics come second. I think Greens/Rise/Solidarity targetted the wrong voters, and should have gone hell for leather for those Labour and LibDem voters, and Greens as well for the green Conservatives (must be some!).

    For the council elections I think all rivalry should be off. How much does it matter if councillors are SNP, Green, RISE or Solidarity, as long as the Unionist base of councils and councillors IS reduced?

    It gives a dual purpose, an on the ground addition to any minority party to build up for the next Holyrood election, and reduces the Unionist ground forces and strength for next Indy Ref. And potentially COSLA. A few Greens/Rise/Solidarity MSPs makes no real positive difference for Indy Ref 2 despite what they say about diversity, it’s getting the Referendum through Westminster (the “legal” route) is the vital bit, and potential problem.

  182. ronnie anderson says:

    @ Dorothy Devine Message delivered Paul will contact you & Ginger went Woof Woof.

  183. macnakamura says:

    Andrew McLean says:
    4 May, 2016 at 4:09 pm
    Tomorrow is the acid test for the National, if it truly supports independence then tomorrows front page will be outstanding!
    ==========
    Open to correction, of course.

    I think the convention for media is that there is no” politicing” on ballot day.

  184. Legerwood says:

    BBC News at 6 – report on u-turn about accepting more child refugees: Kunesberg talks bout pressure from parties to bring about the change. Guess which party did not get a mention?

    Despite the fact that Angus Robertson at last weeks PMQs was the first to press the government on the issue. But heaven forbid that the SNP should get any mention.

  185. Andrew McLean says:

    Orri says:

    “stop all this nonsense and vote for a proper party” you missed sit up straight wear a proper suit and tie and sing a happy song about kings and queens!

    macnakamura says:
    no politicking,
    well they can fuck off! I am politicking as hard as I can!

  186. NeoconNat says:

    Thepnr: “Rise and Solidarity I’m afraid have missed an opportunity to garner support from SNP voters”

    You don’t really get this politics stuff, do you…

  187. Phronesis says:

    Excellent article.

    In Sweden after WW1 ‘as part of a centralised collective bargaining , a universal welfare state was constructed early on, financed with high levels of taxation. The development of industrial competence concentrations and investments in mass production were the basic condition for growth and model…Within a century Sweden went from a developing country to a rich one, rated at the very top in the welfare ranking’ (Kristensen & Lilja ‘Nordic Capitalisms and Globalisation’)

    Sweden makes its own economic choices as an autonomous nation, Scotland cannot. Can we rely on UKOK to sort it?
    Not if this organisation is in charge-

    http://www.contractoruk.com/limited_companies/contractor_salary_dividend_mix.html

    The £900 million HMRC is tasked with recovering of course pales into significance compared to the $7.6 trillion held in tax havens globally through the intermediary of shell corporations trusts & foundations, particularly when UKOK is intensely interested in maintaining economic polarisation.

    Mrs Thatcher didn’t believe that society existed. Her neoliberal legacy of deregulating the economy and hollowing out of domestic production certainly believes in the social of the 0.1%- supported by an MSM and UKOK that continues to perpetuate the myth that Scotland is an economic basket case.

    Scotland is a nation in waiting. When the levee breaks the independence movement will carry everyone forward- tomorrow’s vote is a very important next step.

  188. Andrew McLean says:

    http://www.speakout.38degrees.org.uk/campaigns/890

    thinly disguised trollop!

  189. Andrew McLean says:

    Necon
    Play nice!

  190. heedtracker says:

    Dave McEwan Hill says:
    4 May, 2016 at 4:49 pm

    “Today’s National is excellent.It has a front page of general interest as is sensible in a newspaper hoping to sell to wide audience.”

    So wide it includes unionists too. Maybe you need to start selling your paper as just that. Anyway what do I know. The whole of the tory BBC led media are out to get the SNP and shut down independence but if you guys have spotted a market that wants independence for Scotland but cant make up its mind…

    Anyway, if the National did support independence but didn’t want to be a SNP pamphlet, why not have WoS blogs like this one today then, instead of this oooh shall I give SLab a go again or not?

  191. Ghillie says:

    Thanks Rev! I DID follow that = )

    I really really appreciate the education I receive on this site!

    Legerwood @ 6.08pm

    Our Angus is awesome and like many of the greatest people in the history of the world doesnt get the credit he is due.

    But WE know = )

    And the children benefit. Angus probably doesnt mind how that finally came about. He started it and it worked.

    ‘There’s no limit to what a man can do…if he doesn’t mind who gets the credit.’

    SNP and SNP = ) Getting butterflies in my tummy!!

  192. caledonia says:

    great read stu and none of the other parties will of course highlight said problem with higher taxes.

    OT
    Just read on another site that the SNP are so far in front the other parties are worried their supporters wont vote so have INVENTED the tory/labour closeness just to get the unionists out to vote

  193. call me dave says:

    @macnakamura

    I seem to remember going into a polling station as an observer/nominated SNP person on voting day where the ‘Noose’ on the front page of that day’s ‘Sun’ front page was openly on display where the ‘neutral officials’ were sitting marking off the register sheets for those coming into vote.

    Took a flying visit from the Marwick to sort that out and there were others too. The labour party sense of entitlement knew no bounds then!

    Good old Fife values, not too long ago that. 🙂

  194. Iain More says:

    So according to STV. In Edinburgh 62% of Postal Votes have been cast and in Glasgow it is 65%. Has anybody seen or heard any other PV figures? I am getting twitchy about the lack of an exit poll tomorrow.

  195. NeoconNat says:

    Okay, Sorry Thepnr, I know what you meant when you said that about RISE etc… just trying to kill a boring afternoon by needling you.

  196. Legerwood says:

    Ghillie @ 6.37 pm

    Agree wholeheartedly with what you say but still when it is so blatant as the fragrant Ms Kunesberg it just was too much.

  197. heedtracker at 6.22

    You appear to be missing the point. Of course we want unionists to read the National. That’s the whole point.

  198. call me dave says:

    Geez! Another trigger and I thought only Hopalong Cassidy had the one and only Trigger.

    Mr Salmond knows better. 🙂

    https://archive.is/j1KcM

    PS:

    Rovers or Real Madrid Hmmm!

    http://myp2p.ec/

  199. Had two separate instances today asking me what the second vote was for (one from a trainee nurse).
    The couple from Glasgow thought the second vote was for the council. The trainee nurse thought it was for the Euro election.
    Which rather makes me think we should have done an awful lot more on promoting the second vote

  200. Chitterinlicht says:

    A rarely talked about scenario is what would happen if Scotland lowered tax rates compared to rUK?

    The important sensible question is what would raise most money?

    More people living and working in Scotland at lower tax rates or less folk but tax them more? Hmmm

    Good article by the way

  201. Sickoflies says:

    It is articles like this and the ones published yesterday what is quickly making me become addicted to this site. I cannot wait to come back from work every day and read what new article is on. What a breath of fresh air in a world contaminated with suffocating Westminster propaganda!

    In addition to my determined refusal to being brainwashed by the establishment propaganda machine and its long and short haired minions prepared to vomit bile all over their country rather than ‘upsetting’ their masters, the simple non-nonsense approach to information and bluntness debunking of all the neverending crap spouted by the ‘three branches’ leaders of the day in this site is also the reason why I am rather quickly weaning myself of the rubbish published by the Biggest Biased Corporation.

    In fact, the last time I read something in the BBC and even the Guardian I got so upset and angry that I decided that both the BBC and the Guardian had to be added to my list of serious health hazards. This was over a month ago and I haven’t missed them. My next milestone will be to get rid of the chains of the TV licence: I cannot thing in anything more liberating.

    This site has confirmed that I am not the only one who see things differently to what Westminster feeds us via the BBC and has opened my eyes to a different reality.

    Thank you for that and please keep it up. This site is unique.

    Before the ‘vow’ I was not that fuss about independence. I was quite happy with devolution. I see now that the establishment has taken us for an effing ride so to hell with devolution! Now only independence will do.

    So tomorrow is SNP x 2 for me.

  202. Dr Jim says:

    Terry Kelly

    Gets suspended from the Labour party for joining in the anti jewish row…and yet….

    He’s been openly calling the SNP Nazis for years along with Ian Smart on both their blogs and nothing happened

    Must be OK then

  203. heedtracker says:

    Dave McEwan Hill says:
    4 May, 2016 at 6:52 pm
    heedtracker at 6.22

    You appear to be missing the point. Of course we want unionists to read the National. That’s the whole point.

    Because unionists lack choice on the news stands, or on tv or radio, or internet etc.

    BBC say this kind of thing all the time, broad appeal and so on. Fundamentally, the whole of the UK media, led by the BBC, despise Scottish democracy, not just the SNP. What do unionists like SLab and the tory party think of Holyrood, lets not go there now.

    There is a Scottish market out there for those who disagree, WoS page hits seem to be pretty good. But you guys dont want it clearly.

    If Nicola Sturgeon is not Scotland’s FM in a majority SNP Holyrood Friday morning, the National will be accountable, even if you can get a RISE MSP.

  204. HandandShrimp says:

    I see in the spirit of detente Kev has let Stu use his favourite and most used graph.

  205. One_Scot says:

    ‘You appear to be missing the point. Of course we want unionists to read the National. That’s the whole point.’

    Not much point in get Yoons to read the National if it’s effectively a Yoon paper.

  206. Rock says:

    Don’t take any risks.

    Vote SNP+SNP.

    We don’t want the 19th September 2014 feeling on Friday do we?

  207. Eric Joyce says:

    It’s a super explanation of something important which regular people often miss in their busy daily lives. It does flag the difficulty of devolving some but not all taxes without creating dis-benefit on one side. The larger question though, which I guess a devolved Scotland won’t have to face, is whether Scots are keener to pay more tax than folk in England. I think John Swinney believes they aren’t. Moreover, the 50% idea not about tax; it’s about saying how far left you are. The interesting thing going on here is that the SNP is talking directly to ‘middle-Scotland’ (i.e. most people on normal incomes and upwards) and letting Labour fight with the parties of the left for the scraps. I know you guys will hate this, but it’s looking like the SNP is essentially Scotland’s own New Labour and it’s reaping the same electoral benefits. Except, of course, that as long as the Scottish Tories are preserved in aspic, and they still are, they might get a fillip this week but – because of Swinney – they’re firmly in their box as far as the SNP hegemony is concerned.

  208. Andrew Mclean says:

    I mischievously tried to get cap in hand playing on radio Scotland tonight but Brian was a big fearty, but he gave it some analysts, then came home to a leaflet from no named party, saying don’t gamble with your second vote both votes are important green tax 60% and toxic for income and pension, hitting hard working families etc

    Bit harsh!

  209. yesindyref2 says:

    Glad I posted my postal vote last week.

    For anyone wanting to vote SNP + SNP but forgot to post their postal vote, you can still deliver it to any polling station in your constituency.

    For any others, it’s too late! 😈

  210. Meindevon says:

    @Chitterinlicht 6.58

    Funnily enough I was thinking that this morning. Imagine Kezia’s and Ruth’s faces if The SNP reduces the tax.

    I admit I have no idea if it would be detrimental short term or long term, I expect it would or they would have suggested it already but just to see the unionists faces….

  211. Dorothy Devine says:

    Ronnie , thank you and if Ginger woofed does that mean he liked the Bakers chews ?

    Pauls latest piece had me greetin’ – not that he hasn’t had me greetin’ before!

  212. Rock says:

    This sort of analysis definitely should have appeared a long time ago in the “independence supporting” The National.

    The National like The Sunday Herald is a fraud.

    Don’t be duped by either.

  213. gardennat says:

    Iain More @ 6.44pm

    You Gov are doing an opinion poll tomorrow. I have just been asked to do it once I have voted. I did one at the referendum which was fairly accurate.

  214. heedtracker says:

    The larger question though, which I guess a devolved Scotland won’t have to face, is whether Scots are keener to pay more tax than folk in England

    More SLabour con. What that means in the real world is low paid Scotland paying for the staggering disaster that is Labour and now Tory limitless borrow and spending like there’s no tomorrow austerity. Even PFI will screw Scotland for decades thanks to that lunatic Brown.

    Except Brown and SLab aren’t lunatics, they’re tories, red tories.

  215. Andrew Mclean says:

    Rock
    Ok you don’t like it but in the scheme of things it’s not worth working your self up, have you read any other paper recently. Ok someone fancies some one from rise, but infatuation aside, it can be good in places. I read it, nearly every day, and it’s never going to make me vote unionist but it’s softly softly catchey monkey!

  216. Not Convinced says:

    Of course how much tax should be collected, and in what ways, is an emotive subject where there isn’t necessarily all that much common ground between people.

    However for anyone who thinks their tax rates should be higher (e.g. all those people planning to vote Labour or LibDem tomorrow) I believe it’s perfectly possible to write out a cheque to “The Scottish Consolidated Fund” in the amount of the extra tax you think you should be paying. Send it to the appropriate part of the Scottish Government (the Finance Directorate perhaps?), and I imagine they’ll be happy to cash it for you!

  217. velofello says:

    Short memories folks. Don’t you remember the Herald postage stamp black and white photos of unsmiling Nicola Sturgeon and Alex Salmond sharing a page with quarter page coloured photos of smiling Mags Curran arm in arm with Murphy? Ever read articles by SNP MSPs in the Herald?

    The National provides the opportunity for many shades of political opinion to submit articles. Cat Boyd? Colin Fox? Carolyn Leckie? George Kerevan? Mairi Black? Pat Kane? Did you ever experience that with any other newspaper?

  218. Robert J. Sutherland says:

    I think DMH has a fair point, if you can get ordinary people to buy The National, it opens them up to arguments that they wouldn’t get from any other paper (including The Sun). That’s surely a good thing, provided the arguments are there.

    I’m just very dubious though about an argument that it’s safe somehow to vote Labour, even on the list. Kez herself took this tack back in her recent address to the STUC, a ploy whose significance seems to have passed virtually everyone by. She told the union delegates “consider giving at least one of your votes to Labour”. She was obviously begging for list votes from people who would previously all have been solid Lab supporters. (Though in the interview immediately afterwards, she was back on-message again with “two votes Labour”.)

    I suppose if some article were to convince a few diehard anti-SNP readers to vote RISE instead of Labour it would be some kind of progress, albeit of a rather half-hearted kind.

  219. Thepnr says:

    @Eric Joyce

    Thanks for your views.

    “but it’s looking like the SNP is essentially Scotland’s own New Labour”

    Do you base that assumption on the SNP’s record in office or on their manifesto commitments? I guess you base it it on the one single thing you mention and that is the 50p rate of tax.

    Like you I think their should be a higher rate of tax being paid by the highest earners, though I absolutely believe that this cannot be proven to work while Scotland is still part of the UK.

    Income tax is less than 30% of a country like Scotlands total potential tax income, also without complete power ovel all spending decisions like Trident, HS2 etc it’s pretty much useless. For that reason alone I think the SNP are only being sensible in keeping rates the same at this time.

    Maybe the SNP are right and increasing the higher rate would likely result in less revenue. At least I believe they have conducted a report into this matter. Have any of the other parties? Somehow I doubt it.

    Independence first, then nothing is off the table.

  220. Orri says:

    Posing the question as to whether you can trust the candidates you elect to back independence has the merit of allowing an answer. Only if there’s a rock solid guarantee that those MSPs actually support independence and that they will be allowed to act on it by the Labour party. Can we trust them? No we can’t! Sung to “Bob the Builder”.

  221. Robert J. Sutherland says:

    Rev Stu writes:

    The tax on any money earned from savings and dividends still goes to the Treasury in London, and that’s the killer.

    I’m truly gobsmacked. This one has blindsided me completely. I had no notion. (Thanks, media.) I knew of course that the taxation powers we are getting are very limited, but not that limited. It makes a mockery of the mockery!

    The remainder of the article is a helpful reminder of the utter unstable inadequacy that is SmithLite™. It will inevitably fail, and probably sooner rather than later.

  222. @Eric Joyce

    Labour `the party of the left`

    `we will be harder on welfare than the Torys`

    that was Labours cry before the Gen election,

    Scottish Labour are dead,kept going Zombie like by the life support of a miserable debased media,

    and try paragraph breaks because that was bordering on incoherent.

  223. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @Rock –

    Do you own a record collection?

    If so, is it, by any chance, very very very small?

  224. heedtracker says:

    Thepnr says:
    4 May, 2016 at 8:00 pm
    @Eric Joyce

    Also, how come New Labour never taxed the top at 50%?

    Or why did New Labour hike student tuition fees, scrap grants completely, Crash Brown kicked it all off at £1000 a year, then £3000, now its £9000 and rising. Its get more poor kids into uni apparently. Ofcourse it doesnt, just more Labour bullshit.

    Its very mental having to listen to a red tory like Dugdale now demanding tax hikes on the lowest earners and promising to pump it all into Scottish education.

    Yet SNP is the new New Labour.

  225. Macbeda says:

    O/T probably

    Can I just remind people:

    If you vote you MAY get the government you WANT.

    If you don’t vote you WILL get the government you DESERVE.

    Please please go out and vote tomorrow

    SNP both votes.

  226. ScottieDog says:

    As has been articulated many times before on this site, the smith commission is something of a trap. We have simply been given the ability to rob Peter to pay Paul. I for one am happy to pay more tax if I see it invested in Scotland and not into bailing out the city of london.

    The unionist parties will seize upon each and every time the SNP don’t use the unworkable powers of smith and that where we need to get clever. We will need to divest away from conventional thinking on taxation and start innovating.

    We will need to start acting as if we are independent. Look to some of the ideas floating about from the likes of commonweal. Look to the Eurozone countries who like Scotland do not have their own sovereign currency. Think about mutual credit clearing systems amongst businesses – there is one which has been around since the Great Depression and still alive and kicking in Switzerland and turning over well over 2 Billion CHF.
    Look to regional currencies that exist all over the world to combat the scarcity of the national currency. Look at starting a parallel currency in Scotland – something which has already been proposed last year.

    Scot gov, don’t have to be bold, just smart.

  227. Effijy says:

    Many Thanks to those at WoS for their signatures on the petition for a Public Enquiry into Political Bias at the BBC.

    You have added 165 votes to the campaign over the last 2 days. We now have 89,150 signatures with a target of 100,000.

    90,000 is our next stepping stone, a number that would clearly show the EBC that the Public are sick of their misrepresentation.

    If you have a Granny in Abergavenny, a Beau in Bordeaux,
    or any Colleagues in Teagues, please get them to sign up and post it to all of their social media acquaintances.

    https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/independent-enquiry-into-bbc-bias-regards-scottish-independence-referendum

  228. Socrates MacSporran says:

    call me dave:

    Get your facts right young man.

    Hopalong Cassidy’s horse was called Topper; it was white.

    Roy Rodgers’ horse was called Trigger; it was a palimino.

    Trigger was a Peckham street sweeper; who kept calling Rodney Trotter Dave.

    Easy mistake to make I suppose.

  229. Wulls says:

    it is actually worse than you say Stu.
    If you pay yourself a pittance of a salary ( typically £670 a month) your total salary for the year is under the threshold for paying NI which is around £1200 a year.
    Two directors paying themselves this minimum wage save £2,400 a year in “tax” while paying themselves as much as they like in dividends, obviously staying under the £40k upper tax bracket.
    It gets even better with transport.
    A brand new Ford Ranger Wildtrak pickup with all the bells & whistles, leather upholstery, alloy wheels, satnav, etc etc is around £23k + vat. Which means for a director of a small vat registered company £23k. And it is 100% tax deductible.
    If a working man on a salary tried to buy one he would have to cough up £27,600 on which he has already paid income tax & NI so he would have to earn in the region of £46,000 to pay for it.
    ie double.
    It is an appalling situation which no political parties I am aware of have tried to stop.

  230. CameronB Brodie says:

    Thepnr
    Why should the SNP alter income tax rates in a manner likely to harm Scotland’s economy, in comparison to rUK? Particularly as such changes would, I assume, be designed to mitigate the effects of Westminster’s economic mismanagement. That’s the simplest way of looking at thing, IMHO.

    Anyway, I don’t take kindly to the ethical egotism of those who were recently cheerleaders for imperial wars of aggression. His moral compass is fucked mate. That’s a technical term btw.

  231. Dorothy Devine says:

    P.S Ronnie the shed looks great!

  232. One_Scot at 7.17

    So you are one of the ones that doesn’t read it?

  233. call me dave says:

    @Socrates MacSporran

    Oh dear! Howler…I knew that, had all the cowboy comics an everything. My favourite at one time was Lash LaRue, liked his shirt. 🙂

    Even Topper the comic. Back to school I’m afraid. 🙁

    Still SNP x 2.

    Half time nearly over.

  234. heedtracker says:

    Dave McEwan Hill says:
    4 May, 2016 at 8:40 pm
    One_Scot at 7.17

    So you are one of the ones that doesn’t read it?

    Do you National guys want an SNP majority tomorrow Dave?

    If not, what’s the ideal Holyrood for you all?

  235. ronnie anderson says:

    @ Dorothy Devive Ginger Dug got a chew jist tae git him aff me ,he hiznae seen me fur a few months.

    The Wee Saltire lives on in Photo’s,served its purpose.

  236. Paisley bud says:

    OT but betting firms suggesting turnout greater than 55%. Don’t be fooled by the “boring election campaign” claptrap. This is likely to be biggest SP election vote ever. Your vote is essential.

  237. ronnie anderson says:

    @ Dorothy Devine if your on F/Book sent me a request I forgot to get your Email addy to forward the photo with Wee Skribbles

  238. Thepnr says:

    @CameronB Brodie

    I hear you! I’m on my best behavior, might get a flower as my Avatar after the election 🙂

  239. heedtracker says:

    Big chunk of BBC propaganda coming up, just for tomorrow

    ON NEXT 10:00 PM – 11:00 PM
    Balmoral
    Documentary telling the story of Balmoral, the royal family’s most private residence. For over 150 years this Scottish castle has been home to royal traditions of picnics, stag hunting and kilts. But there is also the story of how the royal family has played a role in shaping modern Scotland and vice versa. Queen Victoria’s adoption of Highland symbols, from tartan to bagpipes, helped create a new image for Scotland.

    Her values also helped strengthen the union between Scotland and England.”

    She’s got a dozen palaces all over her queendom but this one’s special, like us.

  240. Paula Rose says:

    @Thepnr the tweed?

  241. Bob Mack says:

    We’re on countdown. SNPX2 for tomorrow everybody,

    Great article and discussion.

  242. Macart says:

    @Mr Joyce

    New Labour? Not hardly. 😀 LOL

    More the party Labour could have and should have been.

  243. HandandShrimp says:

    With less than 10 hours to go to the polls opening I guess this campaign is all but run.

    Happy voting tomorrow and a good victory to follow

    I would like to an SNP majority, a goodly number of Greens and fewer of the other lot 🙂

  244. CameronB Brodie says:

    Thepnr
    Not that I would want to stifle debate. All opinions welcome sort of thing, so long as they are genuinely held. It’s not possible to make rational decision though, in an environment where facts are distorted beyond parody (see indyref 1).

    Yer man is a salesman for neocon pish, he just hasn’t got the balls to declare his true loyalties. 😉

  245. Petra says:

    I see that the Sun has published a really damning article today re. Kezia Dugdale, Labours manifesto and funding for the NHS. Economist John McLaren is ”puzzled” with their math as we have been for months (years) now.

    ‘The SNP were handed a boost when a top economist rated their £500million NHS spending pledge as the most generous of the campaign.

    (Prof McLaren — one of late First Minister Donald Dewar’s top advisers — had analysed each party’s plans for the NHS.)

    Labour claimed their promise to put a penny on income tax would raise an extra £37million in Nicola Sturgeon’s constituency alone.

    Their struggling leader Kezia Dugdale then tried to clear up confusion over their NHS plans by promising half a billion pounds of funding to match the Nats.

    The clashes came as a report by Glasgow Uni Professor John McLaren described the SNP’s health spending vow as the “strongest” on offer.

    The SNP’s promised funding increase over and above inflation would take the total budget to £14.1billion by 2021 / 22. But before Ms Dugdale’s late announcement, Labour’s manifesto had vowed to “increase spending on public services in real terms” — leaving Prof McLaren puzzled about what they were actually offering.’

    John McLaren states that ”Labour’s pre-election offer on the NHS adds up to less cash than either the SNPs or Tories.” ……

    “The SNP’s pledge appears to be the strongest, guaranteeing a fixed amount above inflation.”…..

    ”Labour says it will offer a real terms increase which could add up to nothing more than current spending keeping up with inflation.”….

    ……………………………………………………

    Just thinking that if England Brexit and as a result we gain our Independence Nicola / John maintaining the status quo re. tax may attract many pro-EU English companies to Scotland.

    ……………………………………………………

    Some great articles in The National today including Wee Ginger Dugs. Worth a read.

    http://www.thenational.scot/comment/wee-ginger-dug-you-can-vote-for-playtime-power-or-a-grown-up-country.17072

  246. Tam Jardine says:

    Thanks Rev

    One of your very best. You have just destroyed any pretence of economic competence on behalf of Slab and the Lib Dems. It is a shame there is not enough time for this to seep into the national discussion.

    I can only compare and contrast with the hatchet jobs over in CommonSpace. I don’t agree with every single thing you say and I am sure you would not agree with me on everything but we all have a common goal and you have furthered that goal more than almost anyone alive.

    I will be amazed if anyone from the MSM picks this up but a great piece of work nonetheless. Spread it far and wide friends.

  247. ronnie anderson says:

    By Friday morning I hope we can hang up the Do Not Resuscitate sign above Slab,ah wonder if Elinor Bradford will be commenting on the demise of the patient.

  248. Finnzz says:

    I believe the IR35 legislation is designed to prevent the self employed from paying themselves the bare minimum and topping up with divis.
    But then there have been very few convictions by HMRC for breach of this…

    Can the Scottish exchequer enforce IR35 on directors.

  249. Socrates MacSporran says:

    Today, doing a spot of tv catch-up viewing, I watched the first two editions of the new BBC2 Scotland series “How Scotland Works”.

    I found it terrific viewing, very interesting and a great advertisement for Scotland.

    The series was produced by Mentorn Scotland. How come they can do such a great job of selling Scotland, while Mentorn, their parent company, which produces Question Time – seems hell-bent on doing Scotland down?

  250. Turnbunlldrier says:

    National front page..

    https://twitter.com/ScotNational/status/727955254986313729

    Discuss…

  251. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Only a few hours to go, and Willie Rennie will have no good reason to pop-up across the country, annoying domesticated animals and exploiting public sports facilities.

    Let us offer thanks to all the known Gods, and spare a thought for all the photographers and reporters who drew short straws and had to follow this hapless botton on his travels over the past six weeks.

  252. Andrew Mclean says:

    The Edinburgh school pip fiasco will have to be hammered home to the dying vestige of what was the Labour Party, for viewers in Scotland only.
    Scotland has changed, we have another 5 years to hammer the nails home in the Union coffin.
    As for anyone who dares challenge the people of Scotland, lies to them, cheats them, out of what is their God given right, we are onto you.
    Tomorrow we have it in our power to say yet again “let Scotland rise again”
    SNP X 2

  253. Thepnr says:

    @Ian Brotherhood

    Willie only has a few hours to go as an MSP and leader of the Lib Dems in Scotland. Then I think he will be gone for good.

    His election prospects don’t look good unlike Dugdale, Sarwar, Tomkins, Davidson, Baillie et al. All top of their list, wee willie could be out of a job after tomorrows vote.

    Will be happy to watch him driving off on his Go-cart into the sunset. I hope his mates in Orkney and Shetland ride with him.

  254. Nana says:

    Tomorrow’s National front page

    https://twitter.com/ScotNational/status/727955254986313729?lang=en-gb

    Let’s get it done. SNPx2

  255. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @Thepnr –

    Please don’t tempt fate.

    The thought of Wullie ‘They’re Behind You’ Rennie getting properly hoofed is the only thing that could possibly keep me up all night.

    (Reviewing it, that last sentence doesn’t read well, but you know what I mean, eh?)

  256. ronnie anderson says:

    @ Thepnr Nice wild thistle for avitar an give that prick ah prick,you know who ah mean the Particulate.

  257. Andrew Mclean says:

    Well done National, come on rock, you’ve got to admit that’s nice!
    Remember shift the papers round tomorrow, national in prominent view!

  258. Graeme Doig says:

    Tactical voting?

    It’s not big and it’s not clever.

    SNP X 2

  259. Iain More says:

    I have to admit I like that front page. Will the content match it?

  260. Effijy says:

    Must be hell to be on the receiving end of BBC Bias. lol

    Nick Robinson twists history to make Churchill ‘father of European unity’ … BBC Bias: an EU referendum campaign progress report …

    http://news-watch.co.uk/

  261. Robert Peffers says:

    @Robert J. Sutherland says: 4 May, 2016 at 7:57 pm:

    “I think DMH has a fair point, if you can get ordinary people to buy The National, it opens them up to arguments that they wouldn’t get from any other paper (including The Sun).”

    Aye! Robert, it’s a nice dream – but that’s all it is – a dream. The truth of the matter is that the average Scots male turns to the sports pages, either the fitba, horses or dugs, and besides their involuntary glimpse of the main banner headline, little else is read.

    Just perhaps they read the astrologer’s predictions to see if it predicts sudden wealth from their current bets.

    As to party political broadcasts on the Telly that loud clicking sound that can be heard from the Shetland Isles to the Solway’s shore, as the broadcast begins, is not a massive outbreak of Death Watch Beetles.

    It is TV channels being changed.

    As for the average Scots females, they read the ‘Celebs pages first, the soaps stars doings and the current top twenty. If they have the time they may read about the latest fashion news, the doings, and recipes, of the ‘celeb chefs and the latest make-up hints.

    Sorry to say we politics anoraks are the minority in Scotland. Even now that there is much more interest right across the country the average person is still inclined to be quite badly informed and not in the slightest interested in details.

    They tend to, “Vote like thir faither an his faither”.

    Met a lady today who expressed her view that she really liked that wee lassie Sturgeon and thought her far more clever than yon Alex Salmond.

    She went on to say the only thing she didn’t like about Nicola was her wishing to remain in Europe.

    I asked her what she didn’t like about Europe. Her objections were that we sent Europe lots of money to pay for our membership.

    I had made a guess, from her Scots accent, she was probably from a farming, or at least rural, part of Fife, (I was right). I explained to her that Scotland benefitted a lot from EU Grants. She asked me, “Like what”?

    I said, “For example Farming subsidies”, and explained that the UK government was ripping off Scottish Hill Farmers as the EU grants to the UK were actually mainly for the Scottish Hill Farmers but the UK was giving most of them to the bigger English Farms.

    I listed several other EU grants including those that Fife had benefitted from as areas that had suffered by the pit & mine closures.

    She said, “I never thought of that”, and I then got onto the vote SNP on both ballot papers. I think I just may have saved a list vote today. It turned out her grandfather had been a hill farmer.

  262. heedtracker says:

    Dave McEwan Hill, I take it all back. That is one beautiful The National front page for Scotland.

    I’ll buy a lot more than one:D

  263. Les Wilson says:

    Watched reporting Scotland tonight, extended version.
    So many anti SNP comments by the Bird et al.
    Absolute disgrace dressed up slightly in the way the BBC do.

    Only good thing was I was sensible to record it, then being able to spin it on…. I will be watching STV tomorrow, they are slightly better. BBC are on stop, yet again.
    Nothing changes in Yoonland!

  264. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @Effijy (10.04) –

    🙂

    Cheers for that link.

    Chris Patten has a wonderful way with words, eh?

    The BBC’s coverage of the whole Brexit palaver is ‘excessively balanced’…

    Give that man an Orwell-resembling coconut! Soo-perb!

  265. Still Positive. says:

    Was on a street stall for SNP in Clydebank today with about 20 others. The Labour stall had 4 including the candidate and her husband. They were handing out leaflets headed ‘Solidarity’ (might come back to bite them on the bum!) but it read like a Westminster campaign leaflet.

    Labour are, as usual, preying on people who don’t really understand politics and only pay a modicum of attention when they have to vote.

    One woman asked what was in the SNP manifesto regarding women born in the early 1950s and their pensions. Fortunately I was able to tell her that it was a reserved matter and Mhairi Black was fighting her cause and Kez cannot mitigate on anything which women do not yet have – their pension.

    It is despicable that what Kez said re above gives women hope which she can never deliver.

    SNP x 2 tomorrow.

  266. Marcia says:

    I see the National are promoting ‘Both Votes SNP tomorrow. No nooose from ‘The Sun’ as we had in 2007? No doubt The Daily Hate Mail will be frothing at the mouth.

  267. galamcennalath says:

    All sorts could happen tomorrow. One real possibility is that the Greens will pass the LibDems in number of seats.

    Then what will the EBC do?

    Their normal ‘trick’ is to have one spokesperson for the SG/SNP then one from each of Con, Lab and LibDem. This suits them, of course, three to one for the Unionists.

    Will then drop the LibDems, as completely irrelevant fifth party? Give the Greens a bigger shout?

    Next question. What will the Greens do? Will they present a strong pro Indy stance? Or, will they go weak on Indy and spend they TV/radio time criticising the SG/SNP for not being radical enough? [where radical is code for irresponsible and support endangering!]

    SNP+SNP tomorrow!

  268. Andrew Mclean says:

    Iain More
    Tomorrow it doesn’t have to, this is a propaganda war, the front cover is all we need.

    Effigy
    The wheels are coming off thick and fast, those idiots should have let us go, instead they let Pandora open her box, and she hasn’t even started closing the lid! It reminds me of a Russia soldier, who after fighting in Afghanistan came home to find heroin abusers had destroyed his town.
    Unionists in Westminster, be careful what you wish for!

  269. dakk says:

    ‘Willie only has a few hours to go as an MSP and leader of the Lib Dems in Scotland’

    Please let that not be the case.

    I was rather hoping Anas Sarwar and perhaps an old school Tory Fanny may be annointed as the other two Yoon leaders so we could have a full house.

    A Wullie,an Anas and Fanny representing the Yoons.

    ‘Scottish Unionism.
    Taking a long hard wee wee and jobbie over their Scotland region’ as heedtracker might say.

  270. galamcennalath says:

    Marcia says:

    “I see the National are promoting ‘Both Votes SNP tomorrow.”

    In my comment at 4:17 I reckoned they would suggest SNP+Other.

    I was wrong! Well done National.

    Herald, Scotsman, P&J, Record? I very much doubt any SNP backing at all! Nice if I was wrong here too.

  271. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Has anyone seen actual proper bookies’ odds on Willie Rennie surviving? Had a quick gander there at Oddschecker but can’t find anything so specific…

  272. Robert Louis says:

    Very important, tomorrow, every single vote will count, to keep the independence dream alive. Drag anybody you know (if necessary) and get them voting.

    2 votes SNP.

  273. Valerie says:

    Really like the artwork and message for The National front page. They must have been reading some of the disappointment here!

    Been on Twitter (I’m a newbie) and it all seems really busy, fast and furious, with all the key figures Tweeting, visiting, posting messages etc.

    I’m feeling really nervous, because we really need that majority to keep that forward motion towards Indy.

    SNPx2

  274. Thepnr says:

    had a look Ian but as you say only the constituency betting is available. For NE Fife SNP 1/7 Libs 4/1. Guess he’s stuffed there.

    One thing caught my eye on the politics betting page.

    Next Independence referendum Result

    For Independence 4/5

    Against Insependence 10/11

    Only one company offering Odds and that is Paddy Power, as far as they are concerned though For Independence is favourite 🙂

  275. yesindyref2 says:

    Apparaently Willie Rennie has a two election strategy according to Scotland 1066. He’s going to take the votes from next election and add them to the ones from this one, and claim he won.

  276. Capella says:

    @ Dave McEwan Hill @ Nana
    Nice front cover. A souvenir issue. Thanks for posting.

  277. One_Scot says:

    ‘Really like the artwork and message for The National front page. They must have been reading some of the disappointment here!’

    They definitely would have known they were in the dock, and credit where it is due, they produced.

  278. heedtracker at 8.47

    As I joined the SNP as I left Holyrood SS in 1959 I have had over 50 years of watching a conversion exercise going on.
    A CONVERSION EXERCISE that only happens if those you want to cross over are led to the case you believe in.

    As of 6th May we are all together again on the same team and I will happily march with RISE,the Greens, Solidarity and all others who want independence.

    As I was canvassing for the SNP when we were getting less than 1% in the polls I understand where RISE is coming from and I’m not outraged that the National was there to encourage their participation in the democratic march we are on to independence.

    My only regret is that some of the figures in the radical left have been infected by an irrational dislike of the SNP which they have inherited from a tortured Labour background. I would love the SNP to be what it was designed to be what it can still be – a national movement – and that all our threads can join a movement that only needs to be united in the aim of independence.

    I’m sure you will be buying a copy of the National tomorrow. I’ll be buying a dozen to send to my relatives all over the world

  279. scottieDog says:

    Oh dear
    Annie the fanny from the tories has just said she will respect people’s call for another referendum on scotland tonight. .

  280. Missed you earlier post, Heedtracker. Cheers
    Might be shortage of Nationals tomorrow . Get yours early

  281. galamcennalath says:

    Ian Brotherhood says:

    “Has anyone seen actual proper bookies’ odds on Willie Rennie surviving? Had a quick gander there at Oddschecker but can’t find anything so specific”

    Do I can’t see anything. A list seat. I see no list seat odds. Quite a few constituency ones.

    Bookies expect the LibDems to keep the Orkney and Shetland seats.

    Ettrick, Roxburgh will probably be Tory.

    Dumfriesshire is close…
    SNP 10/11
    Con 5/4

    Eastwood close
    SNP 4/5
    Con 11/10

    Galloway West Dumfries close
    SNP 4/7
    Con 5/4

    All other constituency seats are high SNP to win.

    So, of the 73 constituencies, the betting odds suggest the SNP will take between 67 to 70.

    That, plus a few list seats here and there should do nicely.

  282. yesindyref2 says:

    @Nana
    Weel, I did post earlier: “I agree tomorrow will be the final verdict on it. Either it has Sturgeon all over its front page “Vote SNP both votes if you want any chance of Indy ref 2” or words to that effect, or it’s as crook as a vegan smiling in an abattoir.

    Seems they read postings btl on Wings, mine and others.

    Cracking cover, work of art. It’s even SNP yellow, and sunny to boot!

  283. heedtracker says:

    I’m sure you will be buying a copy of the National tomorrow. I’ll be buying a dozen to send to my relatives all over the world

    Its already instantly in NZ and OZ, Canada, the USA and Japan.

    I fire off lots of UK media stuff, always with this

    http://wingsoverscotland.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/bellend4.jpg

  284. dakk says:

    @’scottieDog says:
    4 May, 2016 at 10:53 pm
    Oh dear
    Annie the fanny from the tories has just said she will respect people’s call for another referendum on scotland tonight. .’

    She would suffice to complete the Yoon trio dream ticket.

    Wullie,Anas,and Annie the Fannie.

    A full house Royal Flush for our Unionist brethren.

  285. Onwards says:

    Andrew Mclean says:
    4 May, 2016 at 10:00 pm
    Well done National, come on rock, you’ve got to admit that’s nice!
    Remember shift the papers round tomorrow, national in prominent view!

    https://twitter.com/ScotNational/status/727955254986313729?lang=en-gb

    Got to admit, that’s a great front page.
    Will drive the Yoons mad.

    Will be making a point of putting it over the Daily Mail or Express, which ever has the SNP BADDEST propaganda

  286. Ruby says:

    Iain R says:
    4 May, 2016 at 11:18 am

    So many people in darkness in Scotland, I guess that is why we lost.

    Ruby replies

    That is because we don’t have a decent media.

    It’s impossible for the average voter to know all about tax, all about child safety, all about defence, all about every topic raised by politicians/the press.

    We need a media that we can trust to keep us informed.

  287. ronnie anderson says:

    James Kelly wiz getting rider n rider ah think he,s seen the election results lol

  288. Petra says:

    Anyone visiting this site thinking of voting for Ruth Davidson and the Tories tomorrow? Thinking of voting for the Tories because Ruth Davidson has used the constant chuntering threat of IndyRef2 to distract everyone (brainwashing) from actually scrutinising Tory policies and aptitude. And eh just as a wee reminder we’re not actually voting for Independence tomorrow, as Ruthless would like you to think, rather a compassionate and competent Government that genuinely cares for the Scots and Scotland and is not beholden to some wee ever-changing odious plonker in Westminster.

    Let’s remember that the Tories have racked up the highest level of debt since 1948; plan to shrink the State to line their own pockets such as by privatising the NHS; continue year after year to implement austerity measures by targeting the most vulnerable in society; propose stuffing the House of Lords with dozens more unelected parasites; bomb countries with a mind to robbing them of their resources in the process creating horrendous misery and chaos; hide their money in off-shore accounts; turn a blind eye to tax evaders and avoiders; forced through EVEL and trooped from their subsidised (by us) bars to vote down EVERY amendment of the Scotland Bill etc etc etc.

    Ruth Davidson has already slipped up (when forced to) and mentioned reintroducing prescription charges and tuition fees. She no doubt, like her bosses down south, has a long list of ‘cuts’ in mind.

    If any of this doesn’t put you off voting for the Tories take a look at David Malone’s TTIP video … ”The Death of Democracy.” Posted earlier by Nana, Capella et al. It’s one of the best (simplified) articles / videos I’ve come across in relation to TTIP and would make your hair stand on end especially if you are against privatisation of the NHS and fracking in Scotland. Would make your hair stand on end because the Tories are in favour of TTIP. No guessing why!

    The video runs for an hour and 38 minutes and covers the three key areas: TTIP, Bi-lateral Investment Treaties and Investor State Dispute Settlement (Arbitration).

    If you feel that it’s too long omit the last part – questions and answers. If you still feel that it’s too long watch from 30 minutes in to 1:04. That part deals with arbitration (ISDS) and is a ‘must watch’.

    ………………………………………………………

    Brilliant front page in tomorrows National. It brought a tear to my eye seeing Nicola with the Saltire behind her. Just thinking tonight too of the many people who have given their all in their quest for Independence. Nicola, Alex Salmond, John Swinney, those gone before and their many current colleagues. Posters on here and of course the brilliant and steadfast Stuart Campbell.

    Many thanks to one and all.

    SNP x 2 …. tomorrow.

  289. Kenny says:

    People, please, do all you can to get the vote out, especially in the constituencies where there is a hard slog against the Tories.

    Also, keep hammering home SNP x 2.

    It is vital not only for holding a second indyref when the people of Scotland demand it, but also to stop the unionists asset-stripping Scotland (Blue Tory) or bankrupting the nation through their utter incompetence (Red Tory).

    Holyrood 2016 is the vital link in the chain between Westminster 2015 and the council elections next year. Tomorrow is a very important day on the road to returning Scotland to its natural state as an INDEPENDENT nation. Please do your part!

  290. scottieDog says:

    Switched over to ebc scottish appeasement show and there was a young character looking like joe90 confident that the economy would prevent scots of scots wanting indyref2.

    Shit bollocking wank.
    Can’t think of other words.
    Tv intact – for now

  291. Ruby says:

    Lots of BBC vans tents & stuff parked at the side of the parliament next to the Independence campsite!

  292. yesindyref2 says:

    @Onwards
    Just put one copy of The National over each of all the piles. Plus one on the counter but leave it there, ummm, one in the milk fridge, one over the Yorkie bars, one on top of the soup kettle, one over …

  293. Kenny says:

    An absolute stonking post “Let’s Dream of Unicorns” by Wee Ginger Dug:

    https://weegingerdug.wordpress.com/2016/05/04/lets-dream-of-unicorns/

    A taster:

    It took hundreds of years to trap the unicorn. There was the hammer of the Scots that broke on the anvil of Bannockburn, there wis the flooers o the forest that wede awaa, there was the queen who lost her head and the tongue tied son who fled south to the riches of London and thought he’d been appointed by God. There was the king killer who killed Christmas and the disputes about bishops and the number of angels who could dance on the head of the pin that was stuck into the wart of a witch. But the unicorn still ran free in the hills. The forests rang to its cry, and it galloped along the shores of the sealochs.

  294. Ian Brotherhood says:

    It won’t make Friday’s edition, but here’s hoping Saturday’s front page of The National has a picture of Scotland’s answer to Norman Wisdom, still-smiling, eyes dampened, having just delivered his valedictory, with the headline:

    ‘Were YOU Up For Willie?’

  295. Ruby says:

    scottieDog says:
    4 May, 2016 at 11:15 pm

    Switched over to ebc scottish appeasement show and there was a young character looking like joe90 confident that the economy would prevent scots of scots wanting indyref2.

    Ruby replies

    If that is the case then why would Unionist parties be keen to stimulate the Scottish economy?

    Vote Unionist if you want to see the Scottish economy run into the ground!

  296. NeoconNat says:

    Has Ruth Davidson declared the results on the postal votes yet?

    Actually, are we allowed to even talk about that? I heard she was the subject of investigation rather than just a witness as she lyingly suggested: being questioned in connection with a serious criminal act. Do I have that right?

    If Sturgeon was being investigated for that sort of thing, it would be wall to wall on every channel and every front page. Fiddling with elections and votes is serious too, banana republic stuff.

    Anybody that votes for the Tories or any of these pro-British parties should give up on politics and get into the occult or something — basically you’re a self-harming nihilist.

    Get us out of this dark and twisted relationship, for the love of God.

    SNP x 2

  297. Petra says:

    Ooops! The video disappeared into the ether, lol.

    Oh there it is.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6fDCbf4O-0s

  298. scottieDog says:

    @Ruby
    And the uk economy for that matter!
    A tory trademark is the conflation of macro with micro economics. You put that to a tory canvasser and they blush. They haven’t a clue.

  299. DerekM says:

    Well guys its near time you all know what to do,the yoons have tried their best lets show them they were pissing in the wind ,lets shove that yoon fixed parliament to breaking point this time and give Nicola a mandate like no other we have handed out before and remember we cant do this again for 5 years.

    SNPx2

    Best of luck you other indy guys no hard feelings yoon politics is a dirty game ,but dont forget this is only stage one of the plan your chance comes in 2017 and after all the humphing and hawing you had better be damn ready just hope it doesnt have to much impact cause you did better than i expected and gave us a few things to think about so big thumbs up from me 🙂

    tick tock tick tock……… boing clunk lol must stop buying yoon clocks.

  300. Flower of Scotland says:

    I can’t wait for Friday! I’m whacked!

    Can I say thanks to Wings and the Rev for all your great work and helping to keep me informed and sane.

    Thanks to all Wingers for your great comments, that I copy, paste and share.

    Here,s to us, wha,es like us. BothVotesSNP!

  301. MJS Dundee says:

    I have a complaint. You know what …?

    I never did get my Tank Commander Promo through the letter box.

    Or my copy of Wee Willie Weekly/Weakly*.

    *(Surely that has to be a DC Thomson title)

    But is that grim or what? I guess by now I won’t be getting anything from either of them. Totally spoiled my election that has.

    I did get a card from SLab today, which I could send back telling them how I could help their campaign. At least SLab care about me. Though I suspect they’ll get the card back a bit too late for the election. They do seem to have trouble with anything involving numbers, dates seem to be an issue, – that figures I guess. Or doesn’t. Figure.

    I was impressed by the SLab pledge to spend less on the NHS than the Tories though, they’re certainly determined to show me who the real Tories in Scotland are. Yes, that certainly made an impression.

    Oh well, I shall just have to grin and bear the result of voting 2 x SNP tomorrow.

    I guess the Sarwar’s have sponsored Kezia’s leaving do on Friday.

    Yes, indeed, they are well capable of making it oh so much worse for themselves still. How do they manage it? Quite something.

  302. Thepnr says:

    @Petra

    You’ve been missed, glad to see you back 🙂

    Before the referendum I was a member of no party.

    I joined the SSP the day after the vote believing that this was the best way to convince those that voted No who still supported Labour to vote Yes . These are the people I know.

    It has not worked out how I hoped and tomorrow I will resign from the SSP, though will continue to argue for what I believe in and for Independence.

    To make any difference and the chance of Independence means SNP x 2 and that will be my vote.

  303. Kenny says:

    Hope this is the Burd’s face reading out the election results on Friday:

    https://twitter.com/AngusMacFergus/status/724673698486206468

  304. K1 says:

    WTF is that front page from the Record like? Have we just turned a corner intae thon parallel universe…

    Has the Record just declared SNP the peepuls champion?

  305. dakk says:

    Might attempt a draft Royal ‘Flush’ sketch as back-up for when Chris Cairns is away on holiday.

  306. Dr Jim says:

    2016 Shelley Jofre admits the Scottish parliament was set up in such a way as to stop the SNP

    If you haven’t seen it listen carefully

    Maybe some clever computery person get get it and put it up
    I don’t have the required skill for the tech stuff

    According to Andy McKeever ex Tory strategy guy it’ll be all over for the SNP by 2021 and no referendum will happen

    He also employed the Victor Meldrew argument “I just don’t believe it” will happen
    Simon Pia the Labour drunk idiot strategy guy leaning towards Kezia supporting Independence because of the fear of “BORIS” for PM

    Oh, and the Lib Dems are going to do well and win lots
    and beat the wee Green man

    On till morning now

  307. scunner says:

    Andrew Mclean says:
    4 May, 2016 at 10:00 pm
    Well done National, come on rock, you’ve got to admit that’s nice!
    Remember shift the papers round tomorrow, national in prominent view!

    https://twitter.com/ScotNational/status/727955254986313729?lang=en-gb

    Cue some Yoons posting nazi propaganda posters in response, sick to the back teeth of their constant “Nats = Nazi” shit.

  308. Fireproofjim says:

    yesinderef2
    And leave a copy of the National on any bus, when you have read it.
    Mind you this one is so pretty I think I will keep mine, but don’t do as I do, except when voting SNPx2

  309. K1 says:

    Scunner, don’t get scunnered…get even 😉

    SNP x 2 It’s the only path out…

  310. HandandShrimp says:

    I see on the National twitter page the Yoons have gone into Godwin hyperdrive and lost the internets before the argument has even started.

    The Force is weak with them 🙂

  311. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Will Radio North Britain have any parting message for Scottish voters who still aren’t asleep?

    They’ll have to be awfy careful about that sort of thing in the morning…

    Stand by…

  312. G4jeepers says:

    FAO Ian B

    Here’s what wee Willie’s been deain the day

    http://tinyurl.com/jrsmhmm

    Kinda reminds me of this

    http://tinyurl.com/jltvcve

    NJOY ;-D

  313. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Well, if that was your midnight ‘news’ on Radio North Britain, you’ve had it.

    The election is tomorrow and the doors open at 7am.

    Naturally, it goes without saying that if you vote SNPx2 the sky will fall on your head and your arse will fall off, so, being ‘excessively balanced’, they didn’t say it…

  314. Andrew Mclean says:

    I feel sorry for Coatbridge, I also feel sorry for their MSP it will be her again a pretend socialist, it’s like watching a wasp trying to get out a window, and closing the door behind, you’re going on a fantastic journey, the wasp is fucked.

    I wonder what James Dempsey would think of Corbyn? Of course Elaine would think them brothers in arms, sadly no. A million miles and a class, apart But anyway decades have passed, old boy labour keeps his mouth shut, labour in Coatbridge, stuck in religious bigotry, labour mired in sleazy politics that doesn’t speak it’s name.

    Coatbridge has an abusive relationship with the Labour Party, it’s like they say we’re shite, labour needs shite, so we’re labours shite. Maybe you just can’t help some people! Lucky for labour there’s always the Jews.

    Mazel Tov Coatbridge.

  315. DerekM says:

    Daily Record it will take more than that, you know what we want but all the same thank you ,got to say im gobsmacked, astonished and bewildered all at the same time.

    And see i didnt even insult you now you can put that in your records as a first 🙂

  316. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @G4jeepers –

    🙂 🙂 🙂

    Soo-perb.

    It’s like the old Play School…pick a windae Wullie, you’re leavin’ pal…

  317. Thepnr says:

    Newspapers are not a dying media in Scotland they are already a dead media.

    Panic stations from the Daily Record. Cleggy has had his arse smacked from the money men. Too little too late.

    Just feck off.

  318. Andrew Mclean says:

    Scunner
    If you really think that the unionists conflicting us with Nazi party then inform Jewish hate crime sites, what with labour and antisemitic and races hate preachers like snort will wake up the world to the absolute nuts of the unionists support, like the holocaust denier today!

  319. Dr Jim says:

    I don’t mean to bang on about the wee Green chairman again but…Have you seen these Shyster posters the Greens have put up

    Banner across the top is Vote SNP with the SNP logo
    Underneath it says Second vote Green

    making it look like an official SNP poster advising you to do that

    Sorry Greenies but that’s just a bit too Laboury of a tactic and sinky through the floor for me

  320. Thepnr says:

    @Dr Jim

    They are advising their OWN supporters to vote SNP in the constituency vote and Green in the list.

    I’ve got to laugh because they are doing Indy supporters a favour in trying to elect SNP MSP’s in the constituency.

    I give up.

  321. Dr Jim says:

    Scottish Labours official title is

    Region No 9

    Things you learn eh

  322. K1 says:

    Herald’s front page nailing their colours tae the mast, fucking paper is finished in Scotland.

    http://archive.is/09wHg

  323. DerekM says:

    I dont know Dr Jim but at least they are learning unlike that other shower Labour ,i guess the only way to learn is to put it into practice and it is also asking the green vote to give us the first vote so im going to give them the benifit of the doubt,i dont think their list vote will affect us much but who knows its a bonkers systems made by eejits to keep eejits in a job.

  324. Thepnr says:

    @K1

    What a contrast with the National. Whoever runs the Herald is an idiot, both papers are doomed. Take a bow editor of the Herald.

  325. dakk says:

    Re the Daily Record front page whatever it is.

    I recall on the day or eve of the 2011 SP Elections, The Scotsman ran a front page grudgingly recommending vote SNP, notwithstanding the fact they spent the previous and subsequent 5 years trashing and smearing them.

    I think it means nothing more than they want to be seen backing the winning party and a faux attempt at being the pulse of the nation.

    Aye right yaes are Scotsman and Record.

  326. Dr Jim says:

    I just saw a wee film of Alex Salmond pointing something out

    He says If for no other reason to vote SNP how about this, Labour Tory and Lib Dem would have had Scotland short of 7 billion pounds if it wasn’t for Nicola Sturgeon and John Swinney fighting to the last and threatening to block the Smith Commission deal

    While the Unionist parties just wanted to give up and take whatever Osborne was handing out

    So who’s fit to govern, and that’s why they should get both votes just for that alone

    SNPx can we get more than 2

  327. call me dave says:

    I won’t post the main headline article in the Herald as it shows that arse with the Union flag from this afternoon.
    But it’s par for the course 🙂

    But this is better:

    Nicola Sturgeon heads for victory as battle for second becomes too close to call.

    https://archive.is/Z6RGz

    Well done everyone another step forward:

    Sleep tight and I’m sure all will be well tomorrow.

    My Birthday on 6th May… Come on Scotland! 🙂

    Lets toast the labour party tomorrow!…Aye right.

  328. G4jeepers says:

    @Ian,

    Don’t know if you saw STV news @6 where they were filming Willie constructing his wee wall.
    At one point the camera for some inexplicable reason decided to pan around to a guy on a bus who’s deadpan expression was just priceless.

    Worth digging out. If I had STV Player I’d post the link.

  329. Thepnr says:

    @Dr Jim

    I guess you didn’t see my post above or choose to ignore it it. The simple fact is that the SNP “might” win a referendum by themselves even though it seems 15% of SNP voters oppose Independence.

    I reckon the quicker we accept that those who will win Independence are not those that are already members of the SNP then the quicker we will win.

    We lost the last vote because enough were not convinced.

    Giving a hard time here on Wings to others that are NOT SNP just makes the job harder. Get real, to win you still have many to convince and even if they vote YES will not agree with all SNP policies. Independence is the goal.

    Do you want to win or just rage against the rest?

  330. Onwards says:

    Final Yougov Poll:

    CONSTITUENCIES:
    SNP 48%
    LAB 22%
    CON 19%
    LD 7%

    REGIONAL LIST:
    SNP 41%
    LAB 19%
    CON 20%
    LD 6%
    GRN 9%
    UKIP 4%
    RISE 1%

    Getting too close for comfort to consider dividing the vote now.
    Got to be Both Votes SNP.

  331. Thepnr says:

    @Onwards

    Looks like Labour may finish third. Hell mend them.

  332. shane fraser says:

    Sorry, i might be out of context here but .. SNP X 2 DOES EQUAL SMILES FOR A FUTURE to make up for the NO VOTERS to take back what was rightfully theirs in the first place .. THE VOW was a fucking deceitful lie !

  333. K1 says:

    I hope tae fuck we get over the line, 5 and half hours till doors open…let’s get this done.

    SNP twice or…we’re fucked.

  334. K1 says:

    It’s were we are shane. Point taken though.

  335. Thepnr says:

    @K1

    Something that might please a few, don’t sweat it. Seriously paying attention the SNP will win more more then 65 seats in the constituency vote.

    I’m taking nothing for granted but I’ll go for 69, Labour Nil and the Tories and Lib Dems max 4 between them.

    Don’t Panic! LOL

  336. Petra says:

    @ Thepnr says at 11:36 pm …. ”Petra … You’ve been missed, glad to see you back.

    Before the referendum I was a member of no party. I joined the SSP the day after the vote believing that this was the best way to convince those that voted No who still supported Labour to vote Yes. These are the people I know. It has not worked out how I hoped and tomorrow I will resign from the SSP, though will continue to argue for what I believe in and for Independence. To make any difference and the chance of Independence means SNP x 2 and that will be my vote.”

    Thanks Thepnr for welcoming me back. Very kind of you indeed. I’ve been really busy recently and have been travelling a great deal such as just returned from Romania on Sunday (didn’t get into poor wee Moldava as planned .. more devolved than Scotland). First time I’ve been there and a real eye-opener. Westminster castigating the Romanians at every turn, and I’m sure there are some bad apples as there are everywhere, but I found them to be extremely decent, intelligent, friendly and family orientated. The airport in Bucharest makes Glasgow Airport look like a garden hut. NO potholes on their roads or fabulous wide boulevardes and not a spot of litter to be seen anywhere at all. Still struggling economically of course after decades of being subjugated by the Russians and latterly Nicolae Ceau?escu but they are getting there. All of my travels just highlighted how run down our Country is once again. Pretty depressing and *extremely annoying* in light of the McCrone Report findings and making comparisons for example with Norway and Scotland.

    Thepnr I’ve got a lot of respect for other pro-Independence parties and they aren’t the enemy. Our enemy. FAR from it. We can’t expect everyone to support the SNP and no matter what anyone has to say about him I’ve also got a great deal of respect for Tommy Sheridan and don’t forget the stance that he took with the poll tax, warrant sales,Trident and so on. He also totally supported the SNP during Indyref1 which wont be forgotten. There was also a most emotive Sheridan video on Youtube (Bairns not Bombs) which I archived (one of my favourites) but has since been removed. No guessing why.

    We Indy people all have a part to play in fighting for Scottish Independence. Standing together shoulder to shoulder against the might of Westminster and the corrupt Unionist media. I just wish that parties such as the Greens and Rise would have hung back until after this vote to ensure that the most effective Independence party got into power with a real majority …. and then …. all systems go.

    I can see what motivated you to join the SSP and really sorry to hear that things didn’t work out for you but who knows what the future will hold for every last one of the Indy parties and there is no doubt that some individuals amongst them have great potential. Additionally Scottish youngsters coming up inspired by the Referendum, and people like Mhairi Black, knowledgeable and full of grit and ideas taking us all forward.

    Personally I can’t wait to get Independence and see Holyrood filled with some real characters …. real fighters from ALL political parties instead of the non-inspirational, stale, boring, ignorant …. ‘only thing I’ve got to say / contribute to the betterment of Scotland day in and day out is SNP bl**dy Baad’ …. crew that fill that hall right now (other than the SNP). Worse still people like you and I are paying their wages and that really sticks in my craw.

    Roll on. Tick tock.

    Best wishes to you Thepnr and yes …. SNP x 2.

  337. Petra says:

    @ Thepnr says at 11:36 pm …. ”Petra … You’ve been missed, glad to see you back.

    Before the referendum I was a member of no party. I joined the SSP the day after the vote believing that this was the best way to convince those that voted No who still supported Labour to vote Yes. These are the people I know. It has not worked out how I hoped and tomorrow I will resign from the SSP, though will continue to argue for what I believe in and for Independence. To make any difference and the chance of Independence means SNP x 2 and that will be my vote.”

    Thanks Thepnr for welcoming me back. Very kind of you indeed. I’ve been really busy recently and have been travelling a great deal such as just returned from Romania on Sunday (didn’t get into poor wee Moldava as planned .. more devolved than Scotland). First time I’ve been there and a real eye-opener. Westminster castigating the Romanians at every turn, and I’m sure there are some bad apples as there are everywhere, but I found them to be extremely decent, intelligent, friendly and family orientated. The airport in Bucharest makes Glasgow Airport look like a garden hut. NO potholes on their roads or fabulous wide boulevardes and not a spot of litter to be seen anywhere at all. Still struggling economically of course after decades of being subjugated by the Russians and latterly Nicolae Ceau?escu but they are getting there. All of my travels just highlighted how run down our Country is once again. Pretty depressing and *extremely annoying* in light of the McCrone Report findings and making comparisons for example with Norway and Scotland.

    Thepnr I’ve got a lot of respect for other pro-Independence parties and they aren’t the enemy. Our enemy. FAR from it. We can’t expect everyone to support the SNP and no matter what anyone has to say about him I’ve also got a great deal of respect for Tommy Sheridan and don’t forget the stance that he took with the poll tax, warrant sales,Trident and so on. He also totally supported the SNP during Indyref1 which wont be forgotten. There was also a most emotive Sheridan video on Youtube (Bairns not Bombs) which I archived (one of my favourites) but has since been removed. No guessing why.

    We Indy people all have a part to play in fighting for Scottish Independence. Standing together shoulder to shoulder against the might of Westminster and the corrupt Unionist media. I just wish that parties such as the Greens and Rise would have hung back until after this vote to ensure that the most effective Independence party got into power with a real majority …. and then …. all systems go.

    I can see what motivated you to join the SSP and really sorry to hear that things didn’t work out for you but who knows what the future will hold for every last one of the Indy parties and there is no doubt that some individuals amongst them have great potential. Additionally Scottish youngsters coming up inspired by the Referendum, and people like Mhairi Black, knowledgeable and full of grit and ideas taking us all forward.

    Personally I can’t wait to get Independence and see Holyrood filled with some real characters …. real fighters from ALL political parties instead of the non-inspirational, stale, boring, ignorant …. ‘only thing I’ve got to say / contribute to the betterment of Scotland day in and day out is SNP bl**dy Baad’ …. crew that fill that hall right now (other than the SNP). Worse still people like you and I are paying their wages and that really sticks in my craw.

    Roll on. Tick tock.

    Best wishes to you Thepnr and yes …. SNP x 2.

  338. yesindyref2 says:

    @Thepnr
    Sorry to hear that. Seems to me SSP made a bad move with RISE, they were a known name, had had MSPs, and might have got more attention from the media.

    It could be after this election they’ll need all the support they can get.

  339. Artyhetty says:

    Good luck for tomorrow, fingers and toes crossed, 2x SNP. I will be checking the back of my ballot for bar code and number, just in case.

  340. shane fraser says:

    sorry again 🙁 if people with lots of Money are living in Scotland then SURELY they are Here Because this country AND ITS PEOPLE is just so AMAZING 🙂

  341. Andrew Mclean says:

    If the herald run with a photograph of a demonstration by a holocaust denying arsehole, it will be sent to every newspaper on the planet for comment. Promoting holocaust deniers is fuckng not on just because he is waving a flag doesn’t sttop the heralds moral shame!
    Ken red Livingstone, terry arse Kelly, labour antisemitic loons now the herald, oh it’s only a shower, it was all lies, men women and children in their millions you fucking bastads, fuckng scum, scrap your print run if you have a shrewd of decency!

  342. call me dave says:

    The only vote that matters is the one tonight that’s counted.
    🙂

    PS:

    Daily newspaper the New Day is set to close just nine weeks after it was launched.

    Publisher Trinity Mirror declined to comment, but a statement is due later, with reports suggesting the New Day’s final edition will be on Friday.

  343. Ghillie says:

    Legerwood @ 6.08pm and @ 6.46pm

    Re Angus Robertson not getting ANY recognition for holding Cameron’s feet to the fire over not taking in the unaccompanied refugee children:

    I completely agree with you. It was beyond the pale, sickening and yet another last straw.

    But also totaly predictable. No matter how dispicable.

    Can’t help feeling there is jealousy and huge amounts of fear when credit can not be given graciously and fairly.

    Well, hey ho. We get to go and vote.

    The LION WILL ROAR again and again and again until Scotland is free = )

    SNP and SNP = )

  344. Dr Jim says:

    @Thepnr

    I have no clue what you’re talking about, I don’t recall raging against anyone, I think I’d kinda remember that

    If you think I did, you’ll need to point that bit out coz I can’t find anywhere where I’ve raged

  345. Brian McHugh says:

    Artyhetty, the unique ballot number and barcode might be on the front… but totally agree. I will be ensuring that my ballot paper is genuine and has the number/barcode.

    SNPx2

  346. Smallaxe says:

    SNPX2 The only way.

  347. Kennedy says:

    Must admit i am a wee bit nervous today

    SNP x 2

  348. Macart says:

    @Petra 1.40am

    *Waves*

    Welcome back Petra. 🙂

  349. Sinky says:

    The National has a very good front page this morning.

    Agree that MSM not giving Angus Robertson credit for forcing Cameron’s U turn over unaccompanied child refugees.

  350. Macart says:

    That’s ma boxes ticked.

    Time for some brekkie. 🙂

  351. Nana says:

    Off to vote soon, stomach churning.

    I agree with GA Ponsonby, I never thought for one moment supposedly independence supporting sites would try and split the vote, almost as if they want to damage our chances. Just sickening.

    SNPx2

  352. mumsyhugs says:

    Macart – its supposed to be 2 X’s – nae ticks!!! 🙂

  353. The Isolator says:

    2xSNP cast

    Tears and snotters all over the Unionista faces please ?

  354. The Isolator says:

    FFS question mark above was meant to be wee smiley face…damned iphone

  355. Macart says:

    @mumsyhugs

    Figure of speech ma dearie.

    Give it some gallus wellie when you go in there. 😀

    Big hugs.

  356. Almannysbunnet says:

    Back from the local school, X X to the SNP. Buckets oot. Quick scour of wings. Settle down for the day.

    Looking forward to tomorrows headlines; IWWWI

    It’s Wings Wot Won It 🙂

  357. skozra says:

    SNPx2 ! Roll on the result, let it be an overwhelmingly positive one !

  358. Dorothy Devine says:

    The Herald has a rather obvious death wish – to choose that photo for a big spread front page is beyond belief.

    I was there and that bloke was there for all of 2 minutes – plenty other choices for the “quality press”.

    They could have had a gold badged winger for a start.

    Ronnie, not on facebook and not on twitter , never felt the need!

    Benn and done – SNPx2!

  359. Macart says:

    @Nana

    Don’t fret Nana, its an election and adversarial by nature. The first in our history where the constitutional future of the nation has to be weighed against the natural inclination to vote for your party of choice. It was always going to be frought with divided loyalties and struggles of conscience.

    Its completely human and completely understandable.

    One of the themes from my posts minding the dug’s store was on this very subject. Some can’t or won’t vote for other parties during this period. They spent maybe a lifetime forming their ideology which they live by and they are who they are. Perhaps the biggest wrench for some was coming to vote for independence in the first place and that is the glue that binds. Independence is beyond parties and when that referendum comes round again, that rosette will be safely tucked away in a drawer and the badges we all wear will be marked with a YES.

    Some of the arguments used have been intemperate between support, some good natured and thankfully very, very few bitter. Which, I suppose, is the best that could be hoped for. Lord knows, the opposition (the true opposition) have been doing some very deliberate pot stirring.

  360. Famous15 says:

    ELECTION

    If you have an hour to spare today ,go to your local SNP hub and help with getting the vote out.

    SNPx2

    This is important to counter the forces of entitlement who are consumed with hate as they see their comfortable cringy neglect of Scotland being challenged by ordinary people.

  361. Robert Louis says:

    Sad to see a supposedly pro-indy site talking still of splitting the vote, potentially removing an SNP majority and thereby any hope of a referendum (it will not happen without a majority). That site will get no more money from me.

    SNP on both ballot papers.

  362. mr thms says:

    Both votes for SNP..

    Hope everyone else is on the same wavelength as I really want to enjoy tonight’s election results programme..

  363. Bill McLean says:

    With respect to Martin Luther King’s memory. We “have a dream”. The only way to achieve it is keep voting SNP until we do! SNP x 2

  364. Almannysbunnet says:

    I had the strange experience yesterday of speaking to a friend of a friend. A normally nice, sane and educated woman. Politics came up, I have no idea who she supports but I know for sure who she isn’t voting for. At the mention of the SNP she zoomed off into another dimension.
    “that Salmond finished the fishing in Aberdeen with his oil business, look what he’s done to Scotland with all those windmills and Sturgeon is ruining the NHS, the doctors are even on strike, they can’t fool me I read the papers!” It went on and on.
    There was a silver lining though, on her way back down to earth she told me “see that Sturgeon, she wants us out of Europe so she can get another referendum, well I’m voting to stay in to stop her.” Ach well I suppose it all evens out in the end. 🙂

    One thing I learned for sure, there are those who cannot be reached! They must be wired up differently. It left me in awe at the complexity of the human brain. Those signals randomly bouncing across the synapses, awesome.

  365. Papadox says:

    EBC BIAS. GA Ponsonby at indiref2 website requires some small donations to allow the completion of a very worthwhile project to expose the EBC and its poor/misleading standards of reporting re Scotland.
    IMHO very worthwhile project done very professional. Please help if you can, thank you

    SNP X 2 DONE.

  366. Macart says:

    @Almannysbunnet

    Ayup, some folk confuse the ability to read with the ability to critically assess content.

    S’pose it makes life easier if others hand you your opinions. (shrugs)

  367. yesindyref2 says:

    Great “National View”, says it all:

    The National View: Don’t take an SNP majority for granted … Scotland’s independence is at stake

    But in the circumstances in which Scotland now finds itself – facing a possible Brexit and a likely Conservative victory at the next Westminster election – we believe that the best result in today’s election is as powerful an SNP majority as possible, ready to act when a second independence referendum is self-evidently in the best interests of the country. We hope our readers vote accordingly.

  368. Jacksg says:

    Hi folks,

    Not posted for a while busy with SNP stuff leafleting and stuff for local MSP.

    Out manning polling stations today.

    SNPx2

  369. NeoconNat says:

    On the Herald front page, if you stand back and look at it for what it is, the photograph sums up where we are right now as a nation; it shows a belligerent fruitcake with a Union Flag faced by a sea of independence supporters.

    Newspapers love photographs that serve as metaphors like that, that capture the mood and the moment etc.

    Of course, the photograph will also appeal to that hard to explain demographic who think British flags are great. The Herald has been throwing itself at that shower for the last 4 years. I think they made a stupid choice — those people don’t like big words or big newspapers — and the Herald’s chances of surviving look slim.

    The polls are more or less where they were a few weeks ago, suggesting that the SNP is up 3% on the constituency vote and down a wee bit on the regional, compared to 2011. I’d probably settle for that but with the system we have those figures don’t guarantee anything.

    Those second votes are critical for the SNP; anyone that suggested we were being greedy or selfish in asking for them or that we could afford to give them up is just wrong.

    Tomorrow will be a dark, dark day for Scotland if we do not get a majority. Not only will they make it impossible for us to ever get another referendum, they will dismantle Barnett and impose cuts on us like never before.

    Add to that nightmare scenario the possibility that Scotland could get ripped out of Europe and be tortured like the private plaything of those English Nationalists forever. Who would we turn to? They are even talking about withdrawing from International Human Rights conventions.

  370. bookie from hell says:

    unionist hacks only want one headline fri

    Nationalist Disaster as Majority Lost

    Looking back, didn’t the Scottish voter think the SNP minority gov did well?

  371. Nana says:

    @Macart

    I’m a worrier by nature Macart, plus having to attend hospital today does not help with anxiety levels.

    I read all your blogs over at the dug’s kennel and read everything Paul writes. His site is a must go to as is Derek Batemans. I no longer go to Bella, feel let down too many times now. Commonspace is on a short leash as well.
    Thankfully Wings is here for us.

    Oh well take 2 x snp tablets and let us move on.

  372. Proud Cybernat says:

    Aye – yon loon wi’ the butcher’s apron. Here’s a wee education for yae, sonny. Yesterday when you pulled yer daft stunt, the people on those steps allowed you to keep yer flag.

    Unlike you intolerant bunch of zoomers:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xlyNDF-hX0U

    That’s the difference sonny right there sunshine. Tolerance. Do you even know what the word means?

    SNP BOTH VOTES for a competent Government that won’t bend over to London.

  373. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “You don’t have to become a citizen of France to live, work and pay taxes there rather than Scotland.”

    Not as long as both countries are still in the EU, something which is far from guaranteed after June.

    Also, y’know, you probably need to learn French. I’d class learning an entire new language as “hassle” myself.

  374. call me dave says:

    Been at three polling places this morning with some folk a wee bit frail to get their votes in.
    No representatives of any other party on duty except the SNP.

    Changed days, you had to fight to get in past the gang of labourites thrusting their wee tickets at ye on the way in as they blocked the entrances.

    Where are they now? Hey! That could be a good TV programme.

    Oh yes I have voted.

  375. One_Scot says:

    Let’s see, where’s that Todays things to do list, oh there it is,

    1. Take kids to school – check.
    2. Wash car, hmm, maybe tomorrow.

    and oh yeah,

    3. Return Scotland’s First lady with a thumping majority, for the benefit of the whole of Scotland by voting SNP x 2 – check.
    4. Stock up fridge with much beer – check.
    5. Cancel tonight’s sleeping appointment – check.

    Think that’s everything covered.

  376. mike cassidy says:

    On the way back from the polling station I met a friend who said he was going to vote SNP x 5.

    that’s the spirit!

    Oh, and he also knows where Fife’s nuclear bunker is.

    That could be handy now McTernan The Magnificent is offering advice to the Democrats on how to beat Trump.

    http://archive.is/eLBiP#selection-2983.1-3352.2

  377. Ruby says:

    https://archive.is/vew1U

    What about this by-election is it happening today?

  378. mumsyhugs says:

    Haha – seems a wee 3 year old was running round the polling station shouting “SNP SNP!!!” while her mum voted! 🙂 🙂

  379. Dcanmore says:

    Very good article Stu.

    Of course if a unionist party did control Scottish Parliament they would do this very thing to keep Scotland trapped within the union.

    Take the money away, contract the economy and tell young brains their best option is to leave Scotland. The age-old unionist trap.

  380. Ghillie says:

    Here we go folks!

    Good luck one and all!!

    SNP and SNP = )

  381. Our accountants recommended that my partnership pay minimum salary to ourselves to use up allowances and a dividend top up.

    .really found that difficult to take as it really devastates the tax bill….no cash goes to Scotland at all.

    Old tw3eets

    “Well, tax year end….accountant says avoid 40% rate by using dividends..cut tax bill by 1/3. but 100% tax goes to UK & 0 to Scot”

    “then when UK gives some of my tax back to fund Scotland…that is your true blue “English” subsidy money right there for you. gutted..”

  382. Socrates MacSporran says:

    It will, of course, be a set-back, should voter apathy, the BUM’s vile propaganda, split votes and so on deny the SNP a majority at Holyrood.

    However, the party has shown in the past, they can be an effective minority government. The SNP has by far the brightest and best political minds in Scotland, and, just as leopards cannot change their spots, the red and blue Tories will always put UK first, Scotland second and will continue to make mistakes.

    A good performance by Labour, regardless of the issues over which they have no control, will merely keep Kezia in-situ, but, will not prevent Anas, Jabba & Co, and the unreconstructed Blairites and Brownites undermining her at every turn. They will be no-more effective as an opposition as they currently are.

    A good performance by the Tories, given Tank Commander Krankie is unelectable in her own right up here, will hasten her departure to a safe English seat. There is no obvious successor, other than Murdo Fraser, and, he is known to be “rogue” in some respects as far as the primacy of Westminster is concerned.

    Murdo will have to wait for Independence, when he may become the leader of a centre-right, Scottish party.

    I believe, and sincerely hope, Wee Willie will be history by tomorrow lunch time.

    The SNP should emerge with a majority tomorrow, but, if they do not, while it will be a set-back, and the revolution may well be delayed – it will not be a terminal blow.

    They will bounce back, stronger, should they get a fright.

    The BUMS might get some cheer from a set-back to the SNP, but, they are, in any case, so far gone as to be beyond help.

  383. Meindevon says:

    Right ok, been to the polling station and voted Green and independent! Now before you all have a coronary remember I live in deepest, darkest Devon, my lovers!

    Not sure I’ve done the right thing as Labour ( who run the council) have upset lots of locals by spending, sorry overspending on a new swimming pool project that lots of folk want, but in a place that nobody wants and at the cost labour are prepared to pay. It smacks of backhanders galore and it’s not just me saying that. Apparently the Tories will do the ‘right thing’ and save us all from Labour mismanagement. Yeh right! I know several Labour stalwarts that are going to vote Tory.

    So, after threatening to do it for years, and with no SNP on my long list of folk I’ve never heard of, I voted Green. It seems I could have voted three times for three different councillors if I wanted but as it would have meant a choice between labour or Tories I opted out.

    My independent vote unfortunately wasn’t for the SNP, it was for our police commissioner. The Tory one that was in place has opted not to stand again as he is so disgusted with Tory cuts to the Police Force he has even cancelled his Tory Party Membership!

    Hope I don’t waken up tomorrow with a Tory run council.

  384. heedtracker says:

    Nice bit of citizen journalism. Is that not Chrichton Torquil of the Record leaning on the BBC camera too. Wonder what Chrichton thought of the Record’s vote Sturgeon front page con today. He’s keeping mum

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9t1cYBa6mDo



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