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Wings Over Scotland


The UK’s most popular party

Posted on July 17, 2015 by

…has for the last 14 years been the None Of The Above Party.

graph(9)

Ever since we wrote this post last weekend, we’ve been wading in UK general election stats, testing our theory that the closer together the main UK parties get ideologically, the more voters are turned off, and the harder it becomes for Labour to win.

(Because the people who are driven away as Labour moves to the “centre”, which in practice means the right, in pursuit of Tory swing voters are predominantly those who would in the past have been part of Labour’s core vote – the poor, the young and the low-paid working-class.)

We’re not going to ramble on and on at length this time, because the graph pretty much speaks for itself. This is a recent development – the “none of the above” party would have won every election after 1997, when New Labour parked its tanks on the Conservatives’ lawns under Tony Blair, but none before.

What that striking graph shows, much more clearly than we managed to do in 2000 words last week, is that there are FAR more votes to be won from the disenchanted who now feel no party speaks for them and see no point in voting than Labour can ever hope to capture from the Tories by being basically the same as them only less competent and less ideologically principled.

(In 2015, the SNP gained 1 million votes in Scotland compared to 2010, but the three Unionist parties only lost 550,000 between them. Part of the reason the SNP won, and won so spectacularly, was that almost half a million extra people who hadn’t bothered to turn out five years earlier felt there was now a point in going to the polling booth.)

To have a chance, Labour must be MORE different, not LESS. It’s as simple as that.

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  1. 17 07 15 18:18

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109 to “The UK’s most popular party”

  1. Gillian_Ruglonian says:

    So Stu, are you saying that a Richard Pyror type candidate (Brewsters millions) could conceivably sweep them all away and become PM?
    Maybe this isn’t as daft as it sounds? Many ways to skin a cat, and all that 😉

  2. Nice graph! Could you please also make one which uses percentages rather than absolute numbers? (It might be less clear, but it would be interesting to see.)

  3. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Could you please also make one which uses percentages rather than absolute numbers?”

    This one took all afternoon. Do it your bloody self 🙂

    (It would of course look essentially exactly the same.)

  4. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Soo-perb 🙂

    What’s the betting that this ‘topic’ will suddenly become one for chattering politicos over the weekend, but none of them will give credit where it’s due for initiating the conversation?

    This is the type of thing you can easily imagine Andrew Neil slapping his guests around the chops with, but will he, Marr, or any of the other big MSM beasts ever admit to lifting ‘new perspectives’ from this site?

  5. mogabee says:

    The NOA(H) party.

    Kind of appropriate when you consider all this rain we’re having! 😀

  6. Marko says:

    I remember trotting off dutifully to the polling station the first time I was allowed, excited at the prospect of getting rid of the Tory government that had been in power for pretty much my entire life, certainly for as long as I’d had the required sentience to understand what a prime minister was. I put my cross next to a Labour candidate for the first and last time hopeful that this Tony Blair character would make a real difference to things. I always thought it was telling that “voter apathy” jumped to record levels after that election and has pretty much stayed that way ever since. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

  7. Ian Garvie says:

    But tio be frank, if you look at the trend lines for the parties, Consevatives and Labour are on a downward slope from the 1950’s and the Liberals are on an upward trend. So basically the Cons and Labs were losing votes every year. However after the Liberals are stuffed after the last Government.

  8. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “But tio be frank, if you look at the trend lines for the parties, Consevatives and Labour are on a downward slope from the 1950’s “

    Labour are. The Tory trend is almost totally flat until 1997.

    And even Labour didn’t really move much between 1950 and 1997. The big trough in 1983, largely caused by the SDP splitting off, makes it look much worse than it is.

  9. “This one took all afternoon. Do it your bloody self :)”

    OK, will do. Have you got the figures in a handy spreadsheet, or will I have to look them up on Wikipedia?

    I think the difference will be that the main parties will be doing worse because the population is growing. Obviously the relative differences will be the same.

  10. Finlay says:

    Ian Brotherhood 17:24

    “There’s no limit to what a man can do, or where he can go, if he doesn’t mind who gets the credit.”

    To quote an anonymous site I often frequent! 😉

  11. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Have you got the figures in a handy spreadsheet, or will I have to look them up on Wikipedia?”

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/6/6e/UK_parliamentary_elections_from_1950_graph.png

    You’ll have to add DNVs yourself.

  12. ronnie anderson says:

    O/T giver the flooding in Aylth has anybody got Chipmonkey/Quinton Quails contact details,to see if they are effected by the flooding.

  13. Stephen Sinclair says:

    Time for the SNP to field candidates in England perhaps?

  14. Lesley-Anne says:

    I think I have the REAL reason Labour are not showing so well these days. 😉

    Everyone continues to refer to Labour as the Labour party when clearly they have, as most people really should know by now, re-branded themselves as the Abstention Party. THIS is why folks are so confused.

    No one should really be referring to the EX-Labour party as the Labour party any more as clearly it no longer exists. It should solely be referred to as the Abstention Party.

    I’m certain that if this was done properly we would see a significant rise in the support for the Abstention party as everyone who thought they were supporting the Labour party were actually supporting the Abstention party. 😀

  15. Eckle Fechan says:

    A definite growing gap in the electorate market then.. Which Signpost will beable to fill it?

    @Ian B, 5:24pm : “new perspective”. I like this term.

  16. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Hi Ronnie.

    I’ve emailed Chipmonkey. I’ll post any news in ‘off-topic’.

  17. Stevie says:

    Stu – why are you trying to help these Red Tory fkrs?

  18. ronnie anderson says:

    @ BrianDTT thanks Brian.

  19. handclapping says:

    What it tells us is that there is a huge void for a SNP affiliated party to fill in England. It doesn’t have to be the SNP because independence for England is a non-starter but a ‘we will vote with the SNP in their quest for independence and we will also vote with them for an end to austerity, a social security system and an end to warmongering’ party would go down a treat.

    Benefits to England and Scotland, skid marks on Union Jack underwear and the smell of panic in Parliament ( Westminster of course)

  20. Bill Hume says:

    Is there any way to produce a graph showing only Scottish voting patterns over the same time period? That may make for even more interesting reading.
    p.s. Stu….we really do appreciate the time and effort you put into these things.

  21. Francis Mooney says:

    Not everyone can equate percentages to numbers. Maybe ask why instead of smiley face? Or better, do it for others! Enjoy!

  22. Clydebuilt says:

    Rev. Wonderfully clear analysis …….. BUT should we be giving “Them” the benefits of the best analytical brain in the Indy movement… Why not let The Red Tories flounder as they try to morph into Blue Tories?

  23. heedtracker says:

    The infuriating horror of it all is the simple UK reality, the less that vote, the more powerful the English right become. Just one more ghastly Bliar/Brown/Flipper legacy. No wonder Flipper’s got a knighthood.

  24. Taranaich says:

    To follow on from the Rev’s post, if the non-votes were counted as votes to a hypothetical “Apathy/None of the Above” party, then this is what the current parliament would look like:

    NOTA: 345
    Tories: 208
    SNP: 50
    Labour: 42
    Other: 5

    The NOTA party would’ve run away with England, Wales and Northern Ireland, but would have to settle for the second party of Scotland with 7 seats (Murray and Mundell would still have won – barely – while Carmichael would be out on his hear). Sadly it means we would’ve lost the likes of Natalie McGarry, but doesn’t it show the disparity between Scotland and the rest of the UK?

  25. Paula Rose says:

    As far as I am concerned – this is the most important post the Rev has made since the GE, it is of relevance across the entire UK – thanks.

  26. Dave Hansell says:

    Stevie at 6.44pm,

    I would not fret too much on that point.

    The reason why is because what exists here are two totally incompatible mindsets.

    Those like yourself, the other posters on this and similar sites, and the Rev Stu and the other site/blog owners are proceeding on the basis of the rationale reality based discourse and analysis we have inherited from The Enlightenment. We look at the evidence, the reality, and generate action based on what will actually work, what is practical.

    Those of us who adopt that position are operating within what has become known as ‘The reality based community.’

    The controlling majority within what has become the New Labour Party across the UK has joined the rest of what might best be labelled as the domestic and international establishment consensus which rejects this in the vain belief that their wishful thinking creates and therefore represents reality regardless of the impractical it is involved.

    A recent example will suffice. In the recent interview he gave in the New Statesmen the former Greek Finance Minister made a revealing insight into this mindset operating in the negotiations with the Eurozone political/financial elite.

    The Greeks, to paraphrase, approached the negotiations on the basis of what would and would not work. What was practical and what was not. From the standpoint of rationality. This was done both formally and informally. Whilst at in an informal level this was accepted the attitude was that effectively reality and what would work is irrelevant. ‘We are going to screw you anyway regardless.’

    We can all point out until the cows come home the facts, the realities and the practicalities. Those you are concerned will benefit from this will not take a blind bit of notice.

    They are not interested. The level of cognitive dissonance is terminal. We are dealing with people who will genuinelly die in a ditch before accepting any reality which does not fit the maintenance and continuation of their power trips.

    And the problem is this is not confined to elites. You can find this attitude and approach all over the place at every level, just trawl the discussion sites across the Web. The number of ordinary people who do not and will not any price do reason is sobering.

  27. Paula Rose says:

    It all goes to show that we must keep the pressure on – I’m using every contact I have in the rUK to get this across.

  28. Thepnr says:

    I was so chuffed when I turned 18 and had an opportunity to vote in a General Election for the first time.

    My party lost and continued losing for many years. though I would continue to vote. I voted in every election, GE, Scotland and local council. So too did my wife.

    In the 2012 Scottish council election I well remember my wife saying around 8 O’clock “better get a move on if we’re going to vote” I said “I’m not voting”.

    My wife looked astonished “why not?” I replied “I have no one that I can vote for”. Neither of us voted we became part of the “None Of The Above” party.

    Just a few months after that I was actively campaigning for a Yes vote, I found WOS and Bella ect. and joined Labour For Independence.

    In 2015 I voted for the SNP, all I needed was my eyes opened, I hope people like us that read and post here may open the eyes of others that are still members of the “None Of The Above” party. Carry the message, spread the message.

    This is the true road to Independence.

  29. Paula Rose says:

    @ Thepnr – spot on xx

  30. cearc says:

    This is the graphic that was done just after the election, showing the seats won by the ‘none of the above/ did not vote party’.

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CErzNU7XIAA4cA_.jpg:large

  31. Vambomarbeleye says:

    Start fielding SNP south of the border but this time don’t stop at Derby.

  32. The graph is both succinct and rather poignant. A stark visualisation of the utter despair as well as apathy most people feel in these islands. Thankfully we at least in Scotland have the SNP, an alternative to the “Same as usual” politics prevalent in the rest of the UK.

  33. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Michael Fallon, Defence Secretary, is going to spend the entire weekend on the lavvy because he knows he’s getting his baws booted on Monday.

    And who, amongst the Tory’s Lib-Dem coalition buddies, knew about BTUKOK having people on active service in Syria? (Please, lord, let it be The Immortal Ming.)

    ‘It’s standard practise to be embedded in Allies’ operations…’ – not verbatim, but a near-enough snippet from senior military buffer on the 9.00 RS news. ‘Standard practise’?! What fresh pish is this?

  34. Thepnr says:

    @cearc

    That graphic says it all and fully justifies this article. Those least likely to vote reside in traditional Labour heartlands where their voters have abandoned them.

    This is why the voter turnout has continued to decline as far to many are left with no one to vote for. I truly can’t understand why the “Labour” party have a single supporter left in Scotland.

    They are but Tories and even more right wing than the government of Ted Heath.

  35. Hoss Mackintosh says:

    @cearc,

    Interesting graphic which backs up the Rev’s data and shows the difference that the SNP is making to democracy in Scotland as compared to South Britain and Northern Ireland.

    It kind of relates to the Corbyn v the Blairites leadership campaign where I suspect he is trying to win some of these Pink areas back.

    It is also very interesting that the Pink DNV areas are all around the coastal areas. So now I understand where the fabled “Middle England” is. It is the bit that both the Red and Blue Tories as so interested in winning to the exclusion of the rest of the country.

    Also why both Parties are happy to disenfranchise the DNVs as they do not want them to disturb the cosy Westminster establishment.

  36. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Not going to provide links, but just Youtubed ‘Allied bombing ISIS in Syria’ and watched a couple of the top results. Have spent the last five minutes trying not to vomit – seriously, please do not attempt a similar search unless you have a strong stomach.

    Anyone who authorised the involvement of ‘UK’ pilots in such carnage must be prosecuted and imprisoned. No more of this. Even with the Iraq atrocity they always had the fall-back that the HOC had approved military action.

    We all knew it was just a matter of time before Alex Salmond got the opportunity to get the gloves off. It’s a suitably grave issue, and one he’ll make the most of – the Govt and/or MOD cannot bluster their way out of this.

    Roll on Monday.

    (PS This feels like an O/T comment, but isn’t it peculiar how many issues, when you trace them back, involve a certain T. Blair?)

  37. desimond says:

    But…but…its Democracy…its always right…right?

  38. shug says:

    The call Kay show from yesterday does not seem to be working!!

    Did the BBC get a good kicking and they are deleting the file as I type

    They are clearly dafter than they think we are

  39. Thepnr says:

    Check out the pink on cearcs graphic in Orkney & Shetland. Hopefully that is about to change.

  40. Chic McGregor says:

    Interesting map Cearc and even more worrying for Labour since most of the Pink areas seem to coincide with current Labour areas.

    In other words, more to be gained from it by other parties.

    OTOH the pink bits of Glasgow must give SLAB some hope there.

    Mind you I think Glasgow would have been pink for some decades anyway even when Labour held it.

  41. Chipmonkey says:

    Ronnie Anderson and BDTT
    thanks… we’ve escaped problems. Lots of damage in Alyth – and the town hall to be manned all night tonight.

  42. Thepnr says:

    This is not too complicated.

    If there is no one at all who see as standing up for YOU and representing YOUR interests then chanes are you wont bother your arse voting.

    This is what has happened to Labour.

    Former supporters and voters are abandoning them in their droves yet they continue to chase the elusive swing voter.

    Fucking idiots advising that party and the party are fucking idiots for listening. Eh Mr McTernan?

  43. Finlay says:

    Thepnr 20:19

    Your post strikes a chord with me. I am young enough that while I was at school the SNP were in (minority) government, I turned 18 a couple weeks before the 2010 general election and was happy to cross my saltire in the box of a party I mostly agreed with and voted SNP. At that time I don’t think I really appreciated the significance of having that choice.

    Supporting independence was an obvious choice for me and campaigning for it over the last few years has empirically shaped me to be a much better person than I otherwise would have been. I can’t walk down the street anymore without a pocket full of pound coins at the ready where before, I ashamedly confess, I rarely spared any change to anyone. I’ve the Yes movement to thank for that.

    Leading up to the 2015 election I spent many nights talking on Skype about the upcoming vote with some of my friends down in England who fell into the “None of the Above” or “SNP if I lived in Scotland” categories and hearing their despair at having to choose between various shades of shite really made it hit home just how lucky I am living in Scotland at this time; I have a choice between a few different parties I would consider voting for and an entire movement of similarly willed people behind them!

    According to a poll in the New Statesman, Jeremy Corbyn has a 15 point lead over the other Labour leadership candidates so maybe there is hope yet for my English friends but in my opinion it will take at least a generation (please don’t ask me to define what I mean by “generation”) to weed out the corrupted abscesses of the Labour party before they could ever be considered as a viable option. In the meantime they should be left to stew in the grave they have dug themselves.

  44. @Ian Brotherhood

    Here is a tame video Ian

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eT1msilPjBM

    No wonder Cameron is planning to shut down FOI requests so they can bring back their Empire status.

  45. @Thepnr

    Look at the tweets between the Rev and Sunny Hundal a guy that is supposed to have a working brain with his arrogance and way of thinking no wonder the Labour party is lost.

  46. Hoss Mackintosh says:

    @Shug,

    the BBC have form on this – taking down Bits of radio to suit SLAB and BBC. A few months ago, there were technical difficulties and they cut a comment from a Jim Murphy article but Rev Stu had copied it and later in the evening they cut is back in.

    I complained and

  47. call me dave says:

    @shug

    It’s like searching for a needle in a haystack but here it is.

    I listened to the first 5 mins seems OK.

    I heard the first bit of the programme live but gave up after a wee while and went shopping.

    I now treat ‘your call’ as a BBC device to pull listeners strings, it upsets folk like us and entices the hard of thinking into a daily spoonful of SNP bad. Fill your boots 🙁

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b061v4vx

    PS:

    Here’s a twist: Salmon accuses Fallon. Pop corn for WM as the SNP are tabling questions next week.

    PPS:

    Old Queen mum and Betty & Margaret and Eddie VIII in Hitler salute scandal from 80years ago.

    Family video stuff! Highland jig and then the salute.
    It must be true its in the sun. God! they were kids 🙁

  48. Marco McGinty says:

    And further to the National Yes Registry, there is a funding appeal to get this up and running.
    https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/national-yes-registry#/story

  49. Thepnr says:

    @Finlay

    Great post. In my view Independence is much more about having a government that is in tune with the will of the people and in Scotland at least it is clear to me that the majority wish for a more equal society.

    I think we do not hear enough from younger posters like yourself on Wings and it would be great if you posted more often and maybe encouraged your friends to do the same.

    For me this site is all about putting forward arguments that may change peoples perception about Independence and ultimately into changing their vote from No to Yes.

    Posts such as yours I believe help take us closer to that goal. Thanks, and stick in. I’d like to read more of your thoughts and hope that voices such as yours will win a few more converts.

  50. gillie says:

    Amy Poehler’s impersonation of Mhairi Black on Channel 4’s Last Leg was shit.

  51. Hoss Mackintosh says:

    @Shug,

    …. and got the following response…

    “We’re not aware of any edits to the Jim Murphy interview on ‘Today’ on 1 April 2015.

    However, we do use Geoblocking, which is a method blanking parts of a programme due to rights (mainly for those listening outside of the UK, which could be the version you were listening to) and this may have impacted your listening.

    We did have a piece in the episode on 1 April 2015 that was Geoblocked, an April fools piece at 07:40. However, it may have cut off the end of any piece before and after that, perhaps even the start of the Jim Murphy piece at 08:10.

    When a programme is made available for on-demand we try to correct any issues, such as Geoblocking. However, this could mean that an episode which contains blanking could have been available soon after broadcast, before we make a corrected episode available. This would certainly explain what it appears you have experienced.

    I hope you find this explanation useful.

    In no way do we seek to tell a story from only one point of view. The BBC does not seek to promote any particular view or ignore alternative views. Our staff are very aware of the importance of neutrality when working on your behalf. We can receive complaints from our audience that a particular item is biased in favour of one side, whilst others feel it is biased towards another. It’s clear that the same report or interview may be interpreted differently by various people. This is the difficulty we face as a national broadcaster, seeking to unfold complex issues to a very diverse audience, who often have competing interests and opinions.”

    So there you have it – all down to Geo blocking and could not possibly be BBC Bias? lol. Funny how the technical difficulties when iplayer is not available only effect BBC and Labour difficulties?

    Any wingers about there know what Geo blocking is about? Or is it as I suspect just more BBC pish.

  52. Thepnr says:

    @Hoss Mackintosh

    Re BBC radio tampering. I can’t forget that both you and I were made to look like idiots when they edited the Frenchgate Nicola Sturgeon story.

    BBC are no more than propagandists for the state. Puke!

  53. gillie says:

    Adam Hill is doing the Fringe this year. I wonder how he will do?

  54. Bittie Glakit says:

    Hello folks,
    Here are a few more pictures that might amuse you.

    http://mistygee4.wix.com/-page-altered-images

  55. call me dave says:

    10 days to labour saves Scotland. 🙂
    ————————————————————
    THE two candidates to become the next leader of Scottish Labour will go head-to-head in a live TV debate on the BBC.
    Kezia Dugdale and Ken Macintosh will make their case for taking on the top job on BBC’s Scotland 2015 programme on Monday July 27.

    Mr Macintosh, who revealed the details of the debate, said: “I am pleased Kezia has accepted my challenge for a live, head-to-head debate.

    “Scottish Labour members are undecided in this contest. Like me, they recognise that Scotland has changed but are frustrated that our party has not changed to reflect Scotland.

    “I believe we need to change some of our policies and I will bring a new style and approach to our politics.

    “Under my leadership, Scottish Labour will be driven by our positive vision for Scotland’s future and not by our opposition to the SNP.”

    Mr Macintosh had called for a televised debate to give party members a “proper insight” into the policy differences between the candidates.

    Ms Dugdale said: “I’m standing to not just to lead the Scottish Labour Party but to win back the trust of the people of Scotland.

    “This televised debate is a chance to reach beyond our party membership and speak directly to the people who have felt the let down and who will shape our party’s future – everyday Scots. I’m looking forward to listening to their concerns, and making Scottish Labour relevant to their lives again.”

    It comes a day after an opinion poll showed that the SNP continues to have a “commanding lead” over Labour.

    The study, by TNS BMRB, found that 60 per cent of those who gave a preference said they would be supporting the SNP in the constituency ballot in next year’s Holyrood election.

    Meanwhile, 51 per cent said they would back the SNP in the regional vote, according to the poll.
    —————————————————————–
    PS:
    That Queenie story…I’m sure thinking back that I’ve seen this film before in a BBC documentary years ago…maybe about Ed VIII resigning etc etc and being sent to the Bahamas out the road during the war, for being suspect.

    Any older readers recall?

  56. gillie says:

    Amy Meredith Poehler is an American actress, comedian, voice artist, director, producer and writer.

    Hilarious.

  57. alexicon says:

    O/T.

    Remember this photo the next time the SNP is being compared to Nazis.
    The Queen giving a Nazi salute.

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/6548665/Their-Royal-Heilnesses.html

    One for the record.

  58. wull says:

    handclapping says:

    17 July, 2015 at 7:01 pm

    ‘What it tells us is that there is a huge void for a SNP affiliated party to fill in England. It doesn’t have to be the SNP … but a ‘we will vote with the SNP in their quest for independence and we will also vote with them for an end to austerity, a social security system and an end to warmongering’ party would go down a treat.’

    Fully agreed.

    My name for this new England-only party would be SNAP. Officially, that would mean the ‘South (and) North Alliance Party’, or, more simply, the South-North Alliance Party.

    It would be an ‘all-England party’, aiming at the whole of England, and not just one part of it. For that reason, it would run candidates in every constituency in England, but nowhere else. Just like the SNP runs candidates only in Scotland.

    Officially, the ‘South’ bit of the name ‘SNAP’ would stand for the South of England, and the ‘North’ bit for the North of England. SNAP would aim to bridge the huge gap – the eevr-widening chasm – which has opened up between these two parts of England during the last 30 years.

    The official name would also carry with it unofficial assocaitaions and connotations. Everyone would be aware that SNAP also contains the letters SNP. And the ‘A’ for ‘Alliance’ would remind the English voters that SNAP would work closely together with the SNP. This would be a constant reminder that the two parties share the same basic policies. While remaining completely distinct and separate entities, they would maintain constant dialogue, and see each other as partners.

    Handclapping already mentioned some of the most important of these common policies. But there would be others, too. SNAP would pledge itself not to oppose Scottish independence.

    It would even promise to help, foster and and facilitate independence, if that was what the people of Scotland wanted. Like the SNP, it would expect the will of the Scottish people to be expressed in a referendum, when Scots themselves decide the time is ripe to call one.

    SNAP would bear neither Scotland nor the SNP any ill. It would counter all manner of misinformation put out by those of the Unionist propagandists who play fast and loose with the truth.

    It would be committed to building up an amicable relationship between Scotland and England so that the transition will be smooth when Scotland does finally become independent. It would promote the idea of the two countries continuing to share the pound after independence if that remains SNP policy, and is still the preferred option of most Scots.

    Like the SNP, and unlike the present Unionist Parties, SNAP would envisage an excellent post-independence relationship between England and Scotland. It would already be working with the SNP – now, prior to independence being achieved – towards that end.

    People will begin to wonder what’s happening when they hear some mature and reasonable discourse instead of all the braying and posturing which currently pass for the coin of political exchange at Westminster. It will take time for them to realise that politicians are capable of speaking to each other in a normal adult fashion, but they will eventually get used to it. They’ll even come to like it.

    Call it whatever you want, but it seems to me we all need an all-England Party like this SNAP, as I have just described it. Not just for England’s sake, but also for Scotland’s.

    In the SNP, the Scots already have a Scottish Party that is not, in fact, anti-English. The English deserve the same. A genuinely English Party that is not anti-Scottish would help everyone to grow up. Grown-up politics will be quite a change for most folk, but it would do all of us the world of good.

    The SNP have made a bold and responsible decision to vote constructively on issues affecting England. Without diminishing in any way the service they provide to their own constituents in Scotland, this makes their MPs the voice of the voiceless in England. A substantial current of left of centre opinion was not represented by any of the Parties standing in English constituencies in the 2015 General Election. Many English people had no one they could honestly or wholeheartedly vote for. They were effectively disenfranchised. By simply being true to its own principles, the SNP will speak up for them.

    This solution augurs well for the future. Yet it cannot be anything other than a temporary arrangement. The make-up of the present Westminster parliament puts the onus on the SNP, to say what many English voters want to hear. At the 2020 GE, however, their voice will need to be given a more solid institutional form. SNAP, or something like it, will be the real solution at that point.

    English people need to invent a Party worth voting for. One, moreover, that sees an independent Scotland not as a threat but as a future friend and ally. A Party that fills the gap the Labour has now irretrievably vacated.

    Am I simply dreaming?

    Or will someone out there say ‘SNAP!’ to all of that? Or at least some of it.

  59. wull says:

    handclapping says:

    17 July, 2015 at 7:01 pm

    ‘What it tells us is that there is a huge void for a SNP affiliated party to fill in England. It doesn’t have to be the SNP … but a ‘we will vote with the SNP in their quest for independence and we will also vote with them for an end to austerity, a social security system and an end to warmongering’ party would go down a treat.’

    Fully agreed.

    My name for this new England-only party would be SNAP. Officially, that would mean the ‘South (and) North Alliance Party’, or, more simply, the South-North Alliance Party.

    It would be an ‘all-England party’, aiming at the whole of England, and not just one part of it. For that reason, it would run candidates in every constituency in England, but nowhere else. Just like the SNP runs candidates only in Scotland.

    Officially, the ‘South’ bit of the name ‘SNAP’ would stand for the South of England, and the ‘North’ bit for the North of England. SNAP would aim to bridge the huge gap – the eevr-widening chasm – which has opened up between these two parts of England during the last 30 years.

    The official name would also carry with it unofficial assocaitaions and connotations. Everyone would be aware that SNAP also contains the letters SNP. And the ‘A’ for ‘Alliance’ would remind the English voters that SNAP would work closely together with the SNP. This would be a constant reminder that the two parties share the same basic policies. While remaining completely distinct and separate entities, they would maintain constant dialogue, and see each other as partners.

    Handclapping already mentioned some of the most important of these common policies. But there would be others, too. SNAP would pledge itself not to oppose Scottish independence.

    It would even promise to help, foster and and facilitate independence, if that was what the people of Scotland wanted. Like the SNP, it would expect the will of the Scottish people to be expressed in a referendum, when Scots themselves decide the time is ripe to call one.

    SNAP would bear neither Scotland nor the SNP any ill. It would counter all manner of misinformation put out by those of the Unionist propagandists who play fast and loose with the truth.

    It would be committed to building up an amicable relationship between Scotland and England so that the transition will be smooth when Scotland does finally become independent. It would promote the idea of the two countries continuing to share the pound after independence if that remains SNP policy, and is still the preferred option of most Scots.

    Like the SNP, and unlike the present Unionist Parties, SNAP would envisage an excellent post-independence relationship between England and Scotland. It would already be working with the SNP – now, prior to independence being achieved – towards that end.

    People will begin to wonder what’s happening when they hear some mature and reasonable discourse instead of all the braying and posturing which currently pass for the coin of political exchange at Westminster. It will take time for them to realise that politicians are capable of speaking to each other in a normal adult fashion, but they will eventually get used to it. They’ll even come to like it.

    Call it whatever you want, but it seems to me we all need an all-England Party like this SNAP, as I have just described it. Not just for England’s sake, but also for Scotland’s.

    In the SNP, the Scots already have a Scottish Party that is not, in fact, anti-English. The English deserve the same. A genuinely English Party that is not anti-Scottish would help everyone to grow up. Grown-up politics will be quite a change for most folk, but it would do all of us the world of good.

    The SNP have made a bold and responsible decision to vote constructively on issues affecting England. Without diminishing in any way the service they provide to their own constituents in Scotland, this makes their MPs the voice of the voiceless in England. A substantial current of left of centre opinion was not represented by any of the Parties standing in English constituencies in the 2015 General Election. Many English people had no one they could honestly or wholeheartedly vote for. They were effectively disenfranchised. By simply being true to its own principles, the SNP will speak up for them.

    This solution augurs well for the future. Yet it cannot be anything other than a temporary arrangement. The make-up of the present Westminster parliament puts the onus on the SNP, to say what many English voters want to hear. At the 2020 GE, however, their voice will need to be given a more solid institutional form. SNAP, or something like it, will be the real solution at that point.

    English people need to invent a Party worth voting for. One, moreover, that sees an independent Scotland not as a threat but as a future friend and ally. A Party that fills the gap the Labour has now irretrievably vacated.

    Am I simply dreaming?

    Or will someone out there say ‘SNAP!’ to all of that? Or at least to some of it.

  60. Chic McGregor says:

    Let’s not take our eye off the I, here.

  61. heedtracker says:

    “SNP MPs at Westminster are giving their £7,000 pay rise to charity”

    Says Independent, to the sound of several hundred troughers going SNP bad all at once.

    C4 satire fing awful on Black and Scotland, bagpipes, haggis, deep fried mars bars, all waffled out by a panicky Ausie. How very English C4.

    If you want actual political satire, google The Daily Show and Jon Stewart. That’s all the wet farts at C4 do, especially on Donald Trump, holy fcuk its word for word rip off from our imperial masters.

  62. gillie says:

    Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Queenie

    I wonder what the German is for “we are not amused”?

  63. wull says:

    Apologies for sending that post twice. The computer seemed to jam, and I seem to have over-reacted.

  64. Terry says:

    I see lizzies got egg on her face for giving the nazi salute – and they call the SNP nazis! For feck’s sake. What a cheek. Meanwhile JKR now going into orbit over the BBC. (on the plus side it gives us cybernats a break.) the BEEB – Protector of paedophiles and union lackies Get stuffed auntie. I used to be a fan but no longer.

    So if asked to choose between a combination of lizzie and JK or Nicola and mhairi. There really is no contest Hells bells, aren’t we blessed?

    With that talent we can do this peeps. Indy ref 2. Coming soon.

  65. Ian Brotherhood says:

    I keep forgetting to link to this site. Wanted to do it on a regular basis, same way Marcia allows us to check our clocks by posting the covers of the Sunday Herald.

    It’s the Iraq Body Count. Never quiet.

    408 civilian fatalities in the past week, not counting however many more died (latest estimate 80) in a car bomb attack attributed to ISIS earlier this evening.

    Please bear in mind, when Michael Fallon tries to rebuff Alex Salmond’s attacks on Monday, that nothing binds Tories and Blairites more than the whole ‘War On Terror’ narrative. It would all be just a crashing bore if it didn’t involve the relentless torture, humiliation and slaughter of ordinary Iraqi citizens, many of whom have no idea why they’re getting it from all sides – one example from the site is people being ‘executed’ by having a bulldozer driven over them.

    https://www.iraqbodycount.org/

  66. Hoss Mackinosh says:

    @call me Dave,

    I am trying hard to think of any occasion when a political party has had a live telvised debate for a leadership hustings?

    I may well be wrong but effectively this is not just a BBC sponsored party political broadcast for SLAB?

    They were even openly advertising for ex labour voters to turn up at the debate – I really hope some wingers get along to it!

    Surely, the BBC cannot do this or have they given up all pretence of impartiality – again?

    I am not too bothered about as it will be rubbish (especially if Jackie Bird is the quizmaster) and it will push even more ex Labour voters to the SNP.

    But you would think that BBC Scotland might have worked it out by now?

  67. Chic McGregor says:

    @heedtracker

    “C4 satire fing awful on Black and Scotland, bagpipes, haggis, deep fried mars bars, all waffled out by a panicky Ausie. How very English C4.”

    He should check out what his fellow Ozzies think:

    http://philipdarbyshire.com.au/2015/07/why-mhairi-blacks-maiden-speech-went-viral-and-what-it-teaches-speakers-2

  68. Chic McGregor says:

    It is also noticeable how Josh Widdicombe picks him up on every racist comment except those levelled at Scots.

  69. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @cynicalHighlander (10.27) –

    Cheers for that.

    Good to see someone, somewhere, taking these developments seriously. RT, of course, has its own agenda when it comes to prioritising stories, but compare their coverage with the placement of same in tonight’s BBC Radio Scotland midnight news running order:

    1. Sun newspaper releases images of Queen giving Nazi salute. (The palace is ‘disappointed’.)

    2 Some homes in Alyth have been flooded, causing soggy carpets.

    3. A 79-yr old man has been stabbed to death in a road-rage incident in Sussex.

    4. A 58-yr old woman has been squashed to death by her own car on Royston Road, Glasgow.

    5. The SNP, Labour and LibDem parties have demanded explanation about ‘a handful’ of RAF pilots being involved in Syrian air-strikes.

  70. caz-m says:

    Indy fever startin to build up again. You can feel it in the air.

    SNP openly talk of the next Referendum.

    IMO, they are laying the ground work for an announcement next year regarding an Independence Referendum.

    Another two year campaign would suit me just fine. By that time we would have had three years of Tory rule.

    And if that doesn’t drive you towards Independence, then nothing will.

  71. heedtracker says:

    Chic McGregor says:
    18 July, 2015 at 12:07 am
    @heedtracker

    Nae bad for a foul mouthed slut. Above all else, she’s knows what’s she talking about, she’s confident and she’s got charisma. I’m sure there are lots of her generation just like her who will be thinking they can do even better.

    That’s what it’s all about.

  72. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Here’s AS, against a narky Andrew Neil, Sunday before last, as if in rehearsal for the debates to come next week.

    Could it be possible that either or both of these gentlemen already knew the information which has just been ‘released’ via FOI requests?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wd6xRkilb34

  73. Tackety Beets says:

    Great post Finlay .

    Bit by bit I get the vibe that us Older folk hog the thread.
    A young mind’s thoughts will always be welcome.

    I’m off for my bottle o Guiness and a bag o Salt & Vinegar !
    Hopefully I will live to enjoy iScotland !
    Finlay , your country needs you , maybe more than you appreciate .
    Thank you.

  74. Rock says:

    Stephen Sinclair,

    “Time for the SNP to field candidates in England perhaps?”

    In my view, it would be a terrible mistake.

    The SNP would get corrupted as much as the South British parties.

    The SNP should use its current highly deserved popularity to get Scotland independent as quickly as possible.

    As as independent country, we can help progressives throughout the world, starting with our southern neighbours.

  75. Effijy says:

    Could I ask you to listen to Wednesday’s Jardine’s KayeUKOK show,
    but scroll on to the 10pm news headlines.
    At some 25 seconds in we start hearing about the Tories version of how bad SNP are in goading the English MPs by voting on Fox Hunting Laws. They give this unknown English Tory major billing on so Called Sottish News, to let him rant and threaten SNP for 50 seconds? Fine, we will now hear the SNP side of the coin.
    No you won’t! No point in the Biased Bile Broadcasting Corruption
    giving a balanced view when the time can be spend bashing SNP.

    Anti Beeb has dementia and its time for her to sectioned!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b061v4vv#auto

  76. Iain More says:

    The old man would always tell me people fought to get you that vote so don’t sit on your arse and be apathetic about it. Use it or lose it and the barstewards of the world would like nothing more than to take even that tangible right from you.

  77. smithie says:

    Rock @ 1:09, I concur.Lets keep a close band up here in Scotland but spread the word for what we stand for, and hopefully the people of the RUK wake up and see there is another way forward.

  78. Rock says:

    Finlay,

    “Supporting independence was an obvious choice for me and campaigning for it over the last few years has empirically shaped me to be a much better person than I otherwise would have been.”

    Decent political parties lead to decent citizens.

    That is why the Nordic countries have fair and equitable societies.

    “According to a poll in the New Statesman, Jeremy Corbyn has a 15 point lead over the other Labour leadership candidates so maybe there is hope yet for my English friends but in my opinion it will take at least a generation (please don’t ask me to define what I mean by “generation”) to weed out the corrupted abscesses of the Labour party before they could ever be considered as a viable option.”

    The only hope of it ever becoming a viable option is independent Scotland showing the way.

    The Westminster system and the British Establishment are rotten to the core.

    Even if Jeremy Corbyn becomes Labour leader, he won’t be allowed to last long.

    Michael Foot was a decent, intelligent and principled leader. Look what the Establishment did to him.

    They would never allow a decent leader to stay long.

  79. thomaspotter2014 says:

    Wull says @11.17 p.m.

    Will ,sorry about the late reply,getting indy ref butterflies again!

    Your post about SNAP is the best idea for a realistic England Party that I’ve seen so far.

    Hope our many England based friends can get something sorted.Great idea and yes you were on to something truly worth considering

    Nice one

  80. Rock says:

    Terry,

    “I see lizzies got egg on her face for giving the nazi salute – and they call the SNP nazis!”

    Did no one whisper to the purring queen to be careful how she saluted?

  81. call me dave says:

    More farewell performances than ‘old blue eyes’.

    I vow to thee my country…Please welcome from his tour of Dalgety Bay, Kirkcaldy Tesco ,Queensferry and flying in from America…

    The prime minister who was never elected ever…Gordon Brown! 🙁

    https://archive.is/L82r0

  82. Finlay says:

    Rock 01:27

    Agreed.

    “The only hope of it ever becoming a viable option is independent Scotland showing the way.”

    This is a point which I try to convey to some friends and colleagues who agree that the establishment is rotten to the core but don’t believe Scottish independence would be of any benefit to the political landscape of the rest of the UK. Quite a number of the people I know who voted No last year did so for this reason with an all or nothing approach to fixing the UK.

    They are not your fanatical unionists like the poor wee lad from yesterday’s post; they are ‘soft-core unionists’ who follow the rationale that the Yes movement (which they accept is essentially a humanitarian movement and agree with in principle) can do more good from within the system and wish for it to be emulated across the whole of the UK. You and I know that the current system shackles us from effecting any real change and that is a point we need to better explain in clear and simple terms.

    Of these soft-core unionists, many of them who I have asked about their 2015 general election vote have voted for the SNP in the hope that the wave of MP’s we send down to Westminster can pull the main parties in England away from right-wing austerity policy. However, they answer that they would still vote No if faced with another independence referendum.

    I think this is a surprisingly large demographic that we didn’t appeal to enough in September and one which we could probably have a decent amount of success with in the future.

    “We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilization.” – a quote as old as the union. 😉

  83. Finlay says:

    Tackety Beets – If we ever make it, the first Guinness is on me! 😉

  84. Roll_On_2015 says:

    OT – Breaking News

    Appears that the body investigating the reasons why the Pollsters in the runup to the 2015 GE got it so wrong.

    The British Election Study (BES) has published its findings:

    Lazy, lying Labour supporters to blame for surprise Tory election win.

    It found that a high proportion of Labour supporters told pollsters they would vote for Ed Miliband but did not turn out on polling day, compared to a much smaller proportion of Conservative backers who did the same.

    This helps to explain why polls consistently showed the two parties neck and neck right up until polling day, when the actual result gave a 6.5 per cent lead to David Cameron’s party.

    Well whod have thunk it… Lazy, lying Labour

    Reckon Duncy Hatstand or/and John Ruddy should give us their explanation… did they vote?

  85. Roll_On_2015 says:

    Rock @ 1:32 am

    Terry,

    “I see lizzies got egg on her face for giving the nazi salute – and they call the SNP nazis!”

    Aye Rock, Terry, here are the current day Nazis in action.

    Freedom of Information Act review ‘may curb access to government papers’.

    See No Evil
    Hear No Evil
    Speak No Evil

    They, the government, can then do what they bloody want, without even having to answer to those pesky voters.

  86. Ken500 says:

    The Pollsters influenced the vote? The analysis was wrong (deliberately?) Right wing pollsters pay by Unionists. Voters didn’t turn out in the rest of the UK. because they did not believe the Tories would ‘win’. If they thought the Tories would ‘win’ in the rest if the UK, more might voted. No difference between their policies.

    Voters in the rest of the UK were scared by Cameron/right Press assessment of the SNP. Milliband’s refusal to ally with the SNP to block out the Tories. Bad judgement, political strategy.

    Alex Salmond is going to call up Cameron for lying and illegally bombing in the Middle East again.

    Why is the US giving Iran nuclear are they off their heads with more expansion in nuclear, instead of withdrawing it. Iran has more than enough Oil and sun to provide fuel and energy. Where is the waste going to go?

  87. Ken500 says:

    The Referendum was lost by 400,000 NO votes. 2Million to 1.6Million (higher turnout)

    The GE the SNP won (56 seats) 1.6million to 1.6million. (lower turn out). In the GE in Scotland 400,000 less people voted. The same no of voters did not vote in the GE in Scotland as the majority of those who voted NO in the Referendum. (Coincidence)

    No 16/17 year olds voted in the GE? The SNP could have won all seats in Scotland? If 16/17 year old had voted in the GE in the UK, the Tories would have lost and the SNP would have won all seats.

    Another Independence Referendum in 2020? YES. Demographics.

  88. Tamson says:

    No-one’s mentioned the elephant in the room – the FPTP voting system. There is no point piling up huge numbers of extra votes in rock-solid Labour seats like Oldham (which tend to be the low-turnout seats).

    Until you fix the voring system, looking at the overall %ages isn’t worth much.

  89. K.A.Mylchreest says:

    Looking at the graph and then Cearc’s maps it’s clear that (a) the SNP has soaked up a very large part of the “apathy vote” throughout Scotland, and (b) that the equivalent vote is all to play for in England, presumably because these potential voters have no suitable home to go to.

    However Wales is a puzzle. The Welsh do have their own nationalist party with policies afaik not dissimilar to those of the SNP. Yet apart from the Tory seats along the English border, most of Wales, including the Labour strongholds in the NE and South remain ‘unclaimed’.

    So there must be some other factor(s) at work. Until they are understood there is no certainty that creating an SNP-like party for England or the North of England would do any good. (Which is not to say that there would be any harm in trying, just on the off-chance!)

    Perhaps our friends in Wales who read this blog could help to explain this discrepancy?

  90. lumilumi says:

    Someone above asked about “geoblocking” by the BBC.

    BBC and many other broadcasters the world over “geoblock” some of their online content, usually due to rights restrictions or commercial considerations.

    Some contents, such as hit series, broadcasters want to sell to broadcasters in other countries so block them. The rights of many sporting events are sold to different broadcasters in different countries, and in some countries are on pay-tv, so the pay-tv naturally doesn’t want its potential viewers seeing the event for free via the BBC (or some other broadcaster).

    Almost all BBC’s live and iPlayer tv content is geoblocked to my country. There are some exceptions, like election night (I and some friends had a party on 7-8 May 😀 )

    Almost all BBC radio (live and iPlayer) is available online but some sporting events aren’t. While the blocked content is going on in the UK, the online radio repeats a station ID and a statement about rights restrictions on loop.

    The Ashes is an example of such a sporting event. BBC’s TMS (Test Match Special) is blocked, but the English Cricket Board provides it on Youtube, except to Australia, India, Pakistan etc. (cricketing nations, where a local broadcaster has bought the rights for the Ashes, I presume.)

    Australia are doing great in the second test: 566-8 (declared), England collapsed to 30-4 but is now 85-4. I got into cricket when I lived in Australia so of course I’m cheering on them! 😀

  91. Fred says:

    Been away in the Heilans so missed Mhairi Black’s speech, superb & decent effort. The “Slut” is a clapped-out, feather-bedded, fur coat & nae drawers, Edinburgh emeritus professor.

  92. Proof, not that any was needed, that nothing will change in UK politics until this currently voiceless, unrepresented majority are empowered at the ballot box. The way to do that is simple: add an ACTUAL None of the Above option to ballot papers. People would be bound to use it. If even half of the potential NOTA voters in this graph made use of a formal NOTA option at an election, thus formalising and registering that they are not apathetic but actively rejecting, it would send shockwaves through all the political parties and force them to adapt their policies to appeal to this majority of disaffected voters.

    Without this mechanism, this majority currently counts for nothing and can be ignored. The right to reject / withhold consent is central to the concept of democracy as endorsing / consenting is only measurable if it is possible to reject / withhold consent. Voting is a formal act, therefore rejecting / withholding must be formal also. Ballot spoiling, like abstaining, is meaningless as it is informal and ambiguous and cannot affect the result in any way. The only way to give a voice to these people and force meaningful change upon our political system is to include a formal NOTA option on ballot papers for all future elections. This is why we do what we do. Get involved here: http://www.notauk.org

  93. Effijy says:

    Queen Mother-Never Hailed a Taxi but Hailed a Hitler!

    What kind of a mother would teach and encourage toddlers
    to run around making that salute?

    UK Media of course suggest that the Queen was too young to understand the consequences of her actions.

    Just as they did when a teenage Neil Hay, and Mhairi Black,SNP candidates, send out some less well considered Tweets?
    Not bloody likely!

    When prince Harry wore that Nazi Uniform to that Fancy Dress Party, did he find it in his granddad’s wardrobe?

    It seems strange that today’s Daily Mail didn’t run this story after all it was proved conclusively that the paper’s owner were/are Nazi supporters too?

    TV are reminding us of how the house of Hanover “fought”
    against their ancestors in WW11.
    It must have been hard on the King having to stutter his way through radio broadcasts to raise the spirits of
    the commoners who were facing bullets and death.

    It seems to be that same old story when Cameron and Osborne
    have to make very difficult financial decisions.
    Very tough on those 2 who only have £100 Million between them. But we are all in it together-so get on with it Plebs!

  94. Derek Henry says:

    It’s about time we done a Freedom of information act on this….

    As of 18/5/2014 If we add up the national debts of all the worlds’ countries, subtracting any claimed surpluses, it reportedly comes to about $58 trillion.

    That’s right the world owes $58 trillion !

    So who does planet earth owe it all to? Get that Freedom of information act in to find out who we are all in debt to.

    Is it the clingons?, maybe the vogons or trillions mice. Or that dick dastardly Emporer Ming. I bet it is him. Where’s Flash Gordon when you need him.

    Should we start worrying that we have to keep our extra galactic creditors happy otherwise they are going to send in the bailiffs and repossess our planet? This is very worrying indeed.

    So I took the time and sent a freedom of information application to the Bank of England and asked them who does planet earth owe this $58 trillion to. I asked was it the clangers so they could keep the pea soup dragon in a life time supply of soup.

    This is the reply I got from the Bank of England freedom of information request.

    Dear Jim,

    “It’s unfortunate you don’t realise that all money is created by crediting and debiting accounts. Money functions as a unit of account, medium of exchange, store of value, and record of debt. Every debt has a corresponding credit denominated in the unit of account of that jurisdiction, so that all debt as someone’s liability is someone else’s asset, which nets to zero.

    As our double entry account book keeping clearly shows. Since money is not only someone’s debt (a payable) but also someone else’s credit (a receivable). Which is a liability and an asset.

    So it is true to say that the world owns over $58 trillion in financial assets expressed in USD, as it is to say that the world owes $58million in financial liabilities. Therefore there is no need to panic. Planet earth does not owe $58 trillion to anybody. It is very wealthy indeed infact the wealth of everybody on the planet is $58 trillion to the penny.

    If there were no credit-debt relationships, that is, if all financial liabilities were extinguished by collecting taxes. Then there would be no money, and exchange of goods and services would be reduced to barter.

    I have asked Mr Osborne to introduce an introductory course of double entry book keeping to be made mandatory for everyone on the planet in primary school education. That way we could pound into their lovely little brains that every deficit has a corresponding and equal asset to the penny. I.e. Every £ of government spending is someone’s saving and income and asset.

    I’ve told Mr Osborne if he collects more taxes than he spends or tries to balance the budget to pay off the national debt then as our double entry account book keeping shows he will extinguish the savings and income and financial assets of everybody else. I think he is Emporer Ming in disguise.

    Jim, think about it who else was planet earth going to owe it to. – The truth is out there”

    Yours faithfully,

    Mark Carney

  95. YESGUY says:

    Brilliant stuff again Stu.

    Apathy – The establishments aim. Debate – the establishments nemisis .

    I was surprised by the numbers who didn’t vote but can hardly blame the rUK. They have little choice. Surely they can see whats happening in Scotland and copy things to get people interested . It effects them in every way.

    Finley.

    Your post was a big lift . Well done and thank you for sharing. I have great faith in our young. You are a perfect example of them and my heart bursts with pride when i witness the passion and determination of you all.

    Alex. (Thepnr).

    Cracking post and wee reminder of how easy apathy sinks in. Why bother voting eh ??

    Bet most of us here have been through the same experience. Thank goodness we have the SNP after LIEbours treatment over the last few decades. I cannot imagine NOT voting now. It feels really important because not voting allows the bastards a free hand to ruin our cracking wee country.

    Roll on Indi.

  96. Al-Stuart says:

    Hi Stu.,

    THANK YOU for doing the graft work to put that chart together, along with another excellent article.

    The NOTA phenomenon has kind of been answered in Scotland, and with some style. Fortunately we DO have a party we can vote for that fills the deep desire of electors to vote FOR something rather than end up disenfranchised in the NOTA pile.

    Meanwhile a friend I have in England, who often remarks how ill-informed his fellow countrymen are (and he means ill in the malign way) has lamented that…

    In England, there is a need of an equivalent to the SNP, but these efforts have been besmirched by the BNP, the EDP, and now the racist bigots such as Paul Nuttall of UKIP.

    The NOTA – “None Of The Above” phenomenon in England really is a boil on Westminster politics and the old Establishment tha needs to be lanced.

    Startlingly, 45,376 people in the north of England have so far taken the time to sign this petition…

    https://www.change.org/p/the-uk-government-allow-the-north-of-england-to-secede-from-the-uk-and-join-scotland

    “Allow the north of England to secede from the UK & join Scotland”.

    I reckon you can multiply that figure by 10x for those who either don’t know about the petition, or haven’t got a change.org petition account. More like 450,000+ people in the north of England would look to secede and join Scotland. I would love the north of England to have their own REFERENDUM on whether to join Scotland!!! Just imagine the result, let alone the debate.

    All of this says a lot about the dreadful state of politics in England.

    Stu., I reckon your graph and narrative have more mileage yet chief. Perhaps

    Someone, somewhere really needs to start a proper political party in England and for England. Their current mess is allowing the vicious Tories in by the back door and literally killing off the most vulnerable at the hands the likes of Iain Duncan-Smith.

  97. Rock says:

    Finlay,

    “However, they answer that they would still vote No if faced with another independence referendum.”

    If these are middle class people, they are a lost cause. Your are wasting your time on them.

    Our hope lies on the younger generation from the working class and those without work or hope.

    As I have said many times before, the vast majority of the 70% elderly British Nationalists and of the 90% selfish middle classes will never vote Yes.

  98. Rock says:

    Roll_On_2015,

    “They, the government, can then do what they bloody want, without even having to answer to those pesky voters.”

    And the likes of Brian Doonthetoon and Robert Peffers go on endlessly about the people of Scotland being “sovereign”.

    In reality, we too are subjects of the queen and slaves to our imperial masters.

    The Tory viceroy of Scotland decides what is best for us ignoring 56 SNP MPs representing at least half the population.

    “Sovereign” my foot.

  99. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Aherm Rock…

    I don’t go on “endlessly about the people of Scotland being “sovereign”.

    you are the one who provokes the debate, then you move to the newest page without replying to posts on earlier pages here.

    May I quote, “A Will o’ the wisp, a clown”?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M1HwVmY28Pk

  100. Patrick Higgs says:

    Please explain how this plot was constructed?

    – I mean the number of votes obviously changed over period 1950-2015, yet the above plot shows no reflection of this? Are you sure that 36 million people voted in 1950, whilst only 2015 only 40 million people voted, from a population which now exceeds 70 million.

    – For each year are you plotting a select sample of the total number of votes, that is representative of the entire population?

    – Perhaps a percentage plot would be more appropriate (using the entire data set of course!)

  101. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Are you sure that 36 million people voted in 1950, whilst only 2015 only 40 million people voted, from a population which now exceeds 70 million”

    (1) Yes, of course I’m fucking sure. Those are the official statistics, go and look them up yourself.

    (2) The population of the UK does NOT “exceed 70 million”. It’s less than 65 million, of whom millions are of course below voting age:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-33266792

  102. Rock says:

    Brian Doonthetoon,

    “I don’t go on “endlessly about the people of Scotland being “sovereign”.”

    Do you now accept that in reality we plebs have absolutely no sovereignty?

  103. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    No, I don’t accept that Rock.

    I’ll give you some links to research. Here’s a quote from one of them:-

    For example, under the terms of the union agreement, the Scottish judges retain the power to declare legislation by the Westminster Parliament to be null and void if it is
    not in the evident interest of the people of Scotland.

    Furthermore, according to Lord Stair’s Institutions of the Law of Scotland – one of the fundamental sources of Scots
    law – the Scottish courts have the power to “derogate” an act of Parliament if it is found to be in conflict with the fundamental principles of Scots law. The fact that
    these powers have not been used to date – although the threat to do so has been made on several occasions – does not alter the situation. The powers are there and can be invoked by the Scottish courts at any time.

    http://www.electricscotland.com/independence/sovereignty.pdf

    The result was that the incoming UK Labour Government under Tony Blair was forced to head its legislative programme with bills for devolved government in Scotland and Wales.

    http://www.electricscotland.com/independence/council.pdf

    That last one shows what ‘the people’ did, largely unreported in the media.

  104. Rock says:

    Brian Doonthetoon,

    “No, I don’t accept that Rock.

    I’ll give you some links to research. Here’s a quote from one of them”

    You are talking about theoretical, I am talking about practical.

    The Scottish courts are tools of the establishment. They give no powers whatsoever to the plebs.

    What “sovereignty” powers did the declaration of Arbroath give to the plebs?

    You don’t want to answer that question because you know that it contradicts your argument.

  105. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Hi Rock.

    “You are talking about theoretical, I am talking about practical.”

    Did you actually read the second link? That was PRACTICAL, not theoretical.

    “What “sovereignty” powers did the declaration of Arbroath give to the plebs?”

    It didn’t “give” anything. It was a letter to the pope, asking him to confirm Scotland’s right to freedom and the sovereignty of the people over the monarch.



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