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Wings Over Scotland

Being silenced is golden

Posted on May 31, 2018 by

The findings of Lord Bracadale’s report into hate-crime law in Scotland were published today (tl;dr version: OBFA’s coming back), and we couldn’t help observing them in the context of an interesting Guardian article on the alt/far right yesterday.

Because we’ve discovered something slightly odd about the subject.

As it happened, offensive speech was another of the things we’d just had our pollsters Panelbase poll the people of England about this month. And it’s a subject that they’re markedly split on.

Really hyper-alert viewers might have noticed that we firmed up that question a little bit from the previous times we’ve asked it – we’ve replaced mere “prosecution” with “imprisonment”. And doing so had a very noticeable difference on the outcome – in fact, it reversed public opinion from overall support to overall opposition.


Agree: 46% 
Disagree: 37%
Net: +9


Agree: 30% 
Disagree: 40%
Net: -10

Making the punishment more severe slashed the number of people in favour by more than a third, from 46% to 30%. But that wasn’t even the interesting thing.

In almost every question in our poll (and there were a lot of them), respondents tended to split heavily along party lines, and in particular on Leave/Remain lines.

Just 11% of Remain voters strongly agreed with the statement “There is a problem with too much immigration in the UK”, for example, compared to 50% of Leavers. Even away from Brexit-related issues, only 30% of Remain voters want hanging brought back for murder, versus 60% of Leavers.

(For perspective, the party differences on the latter question are much smaller – 51% of Tory voters are in favour, but so are 43% of Labour voters.)

But jailing people for offensive speech united everyone in opposition.

Tory voters were against the idea by 7%, Labour voters against by 12%, Lib Dems by (a slightly alarmingly small and illiberal) 3%, Remainers by 10% and Leavers by 12%.

In fact, the only policy in our entire poll which more resolutely united Remainers and Leavers was far more prominent corrections in newspapers, something on which they can’t be separated at all (both in favour by a gargantuan 79-5).

We should of course note that Tommy Robinson was imprisoned for contempt of court, not hate speech, and “Count Dankula” escaped jail for his Hitler-saluting pug, though that could change on appeal. But it’s surprising and fascinating to see that contrary to what you might garner from the media, the public’s attitude towards free speech ISN’T a left-right issue.

By a fragile but significant majority, most people want some action taken over offensive comments, but DON’T want anyone locked away for it. They seem to feel that tone policing is now crossing a line – even if perhaps only because, as pointed out by the Guardian, it ultimately does the offenders more good than harm.

In the increasingly terrifying authoritarian AND right-wing climate of 2018 Britain, that’s something that lawmakers perhaps ought to be taking note of.

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  1. 31 05 18 12:56

    Being silenced is golden | speymouth

79 to “Being silenced is golden”

  1. Fred says:

    So, OK if ah call Colin Fox a doughball?

  2. HandandShrimp says:

    I would tend to agree that things have gone too far. The zeig heil pug was a joke that was perhaps ill considered but it clearly wasn’t a hate crime. It was a waste of court time and brings the concept of hate crime into disrepute and offers succour to those who genuinely do peddle hate. “I’m being oppressed…just like the pug guy”

    Wings was also targeted, silenced, albeit temporarily, by spurious allegations of offensive something or other. It seemed to be some sort of effort to make identifying lying pish in the media a criminal offence.

  3. Greannach says:

    Do factual statements about Alex Cole-Hamilton’s judgement count?

  4. James Mills says:

    So … we can’t jail Katie Hopkins ?

  5. Breeks says:

    For Scotland, the big elephant in the room is the propaganda.

    Yes of course hate speech and warmongering abuse are dangerous threats to a multicultural society, but Scotland has a more immediate and higher priority in actually getting its own media, nevermind regulating theirs.

    Scotland still has that slug of a man David Coburn representing Scotland in Europe as a MEP, partly as a consequence of our voting system, but more so because the BritNat media exported UKIP ideology to Scotland.

    It concerns me that addressing and regulating hate speech without addressing the distortions and manipulations of the propagandists risks giving the Media a perceived clean bill of health which it wouldn’t deserve.

    Mr Oikface Robinson has already been undone by the existing legal system, but the mendacity of the BBC and the UK newspapers remains virtually unchallenged and free to distort the Scottish political agenda and narrative with effective impunity.

  6. mogabee says:

    Sincerely scary the direction the governments are heading.

    UK..Armed police on the streets of rural areas, taking down videos without evidence they create unrest/violence, arresting females who don’t agree that men who dress as women are ‘women’ to name just a few.

    Creating a culture of the people versus the authorities never ends well..

  7. John Watson says:

    It has become time to question the whole concept of free speech. We accept that in a social society free will has to be tempered by rules, otherwise there is anarchy. For society to operate for the good of all the people some elements of free will has to be sacrificed. The advent of the internet and the meteoric growth of social media has allowed, for the first time in our history, ordinary citizens to have access to mass media. Prior to this mass media in the form of newspapers, radio and television while appearing to be the bastions off free speech were in effect controlled by their proprietors or paymasters. There has always been the lunatic left or right shouting the odds, the religious bigots banging on about how they’re right and everyone else is wrong. Thdifference is that pre internet you rarely ever hear them or of them. Now they’re free to say exactly what they like on web sites, blogs and Facebook, they can self publish books on the web. We have created Pandora’s Box and with vast benefits it has brought it has also generated a vile ugly side which is being exploited to promote ideas and thoughts which are at odds with general social standards.

    So back to free will, as a society we created rules which curtailed free will for the good of society as a whole. I feel we are facing at time when free speech is going to have to be accessed in a similar vein. Are we as a society happy to have no constraints on it or do we think there are lines that, for the gen real good, should not be crossed. It will be a fascinating debate.

  8. John Dickson says:

    James Mills says: “So … we can’t jail Katie Hopkins ?”

    The South Africans did, they should have kept her as well

  9. John Lowe says:

    I agree John. However better education about Humanity and how we are all similar in what we want from life will lessen the sway of the hate mongers. Oh and a proper impartial MSM would help.

  10. Merkin Scot says:

    “We should of course note that Tommy Robinson was imprisoned for contempt of court, not hate speech,…..”

  11. Dr Jim says:

    Of course there is no such thing as free speech it all depends on who you are whether the *law* will decide what kind of speech is free or whether it means the freedom to speak and not always the content of what you say but the manner in which you say it

    It’s all about the use of definitions to ensure the right kind of freedom of speech

  12. ronnie anderson says:

    Fred Naw Ah like Auntie Bessies , he’s getting instruction’s from his Norn Irish Mii handler Vernon

  13. Breeks says:

    John Watson says:
    31 May, 2018 at 12:13 pm
    It has become time to question the whole concept of free speech…

    I’m quite relaxed about it.

    Social media is just like a new Scientific breakthrough, like IVF, or cloning DNA for designer babies. It’s an evolutionary step forward, but our society has no framework for handling the ethical dilemmas created, because the dilemmas didn’t exist before. It can all get a bit anxious and alarming in the short term, but rules will evolve to address the excesses… or sweep them out of sight anyway.

    You have to wonder whether Germany’s slide into Fascism under the Nazis would have been helped or hindered by the existence of social media and the Internet back in the 1930’s. Who would it have helped? Who would have been worse off?

    Could it all still have happened? Oh yes, most certainly. Just look at modern day Gaza, and that’s going on in plain sight when we have social media. But then again, how much more debased might the plight of the Palestinians become if the Israelis were not held in check by video evidence the World abhors?

    But would Hitler have been contained in his fanatical aspirations? I don’t know. Maybe. To a lesser degree, you could speculate whether Social media has furthered the reach of the haters and the bigots in Brexit Britain, or exposed them as haters and bigots to a much wider sphere of critical people. The answer is undoubtedly both, so we need to look at the nett impact overall.

    For my own part, I’m 100% in favour of Free Speech for all, but only as individuals. In my opinion the game changes when you have corporate interests, and monopolised media cartels who are abusing the principles of free speech and rights to reply. That’s where the rudimentary principles of Freedom of Speech are coming unstuck.

    What that boils down to is a journalist being free to say what he likes, hold whatever prejudices he writes under his own personal freedom of speech. But the minute such ideas are taken up by a powerful corporate entity like a news agency, then Freedom of Speech enters a whole new game. So should the legislation and rules on accountability.

  14. Bill Glen says:

    i Do not hear Any Mention of Prince Harry Dressing in a Nazi Uniform as being Classed as a Hate Crime Or any Mention of Court Proceedings ,, Wondering Why ??

  15. geeo says:

    Of course, we should also note it was hatred of Muslims which led to him doing what he did to be jailed for contempt.

    And an arrogance borne from WM Tory actions and media promotion, of a bigoted hard right political party (ukip) which made him think he could get away with what he did.

    I really hope he gets a hard time in prison, bet he is not such the big mouth in pokey, for fear of a sore face or even more sore arse !!

  16. Derick fae Yell says:

    Completely off topic but I can’t cope.

    Clerkin! hahahahaha!

    The idea that the Herald thinks this is some sort of ‘blow’ to independence. hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

    and breathe

    hahahahahaha! etc

  17. galamcennalath says:

    Perversely, it’s often not freedom of speech that’s the issue, but failure to speak. Things aren’t said which should be said. People and institutions which deserve verbal attack by criticism and calling out, get off lightly. Injustices aren’t challenged when they should be.

    We now live in a UK where not only is free speaking suppressed by over jealous political correctness, it is also suppressed in order to protect the system, the elite, and the establishment.

    The two are often blurred into one another.

  18. Scottish Steve says:

    I am conflicted about this. Of course I believe in free speech but surely there must be limits? I was in a debate with a right winger once and as a gay man, I asked him if it was acceptable for someone to follow me down the street, shouting homophobic abuse at me. He told me bluntly that I had to accept that since that was their free speech and they should not be prosecuted.

    I asked a self-identified libertarian if it was free speech or hate speech if someone publicly called for the extermination of Jews. He said it was clearly the former. I saw an article today in the Guardian: Free Speech for Nazis? This is getting dangerous. Free speech is being fetishised to such an extent that now we are seriously contemplating allowing actual Nazis to freely express their views. It was only last century that we fought a war against such people. Now we want to give them the freedom to air their hideous views because if we don’t, we’re apparently bigots?

    It is ironic that Nazis and fascists are whining about their free speech when, if they were given a whiff of power, they would disbar everyone else from having their own free speech. I think a society with completely unrestricted free speech sounds ugly. It’s alright if you’re in the majority but if you’re a minority like myself, it sounds intimidating and unpleasant.

  19. CameronB Brodie says:

    Sorry, I just can’t help myself. 🙂

    Theorizing Media and Crime

    Why are we so fascinated by crime and deviance? If the media can so successfully engage the public’s fascination, can they equally tap into – and increase – people’s fears about crime? Is the media’s interest in – some would say, obsession with – crime harmful? What exactly is the relationship between the mass media and crime? Students and researchers of both criminology and media studies have sought to understand the connections between media and crime for well over a century. It’s interesting to note that, although rarely working together, striking parallels can be found between the efforts of criminologists and media theorists to understand and ‘unpack’ the relationships between crime, deviance and criminal justice on the one hand, and media and popular culture on the other….

    Introduction to Sociology – 1st Canadian Edition

    Chapter 7. Deviance, Crime, and Social Control

    7.1. Deviance and Control

    What, exactly, is deviance? And what is the relationship between deviance and crime? According to sociologist William Graham Sumner, deviance is a violation of established contextual, cultural, or social norms, whether folkways, mores, or codified law (1906). Folkways are norms based on everyday cultural customs concerning practical matters like how to hold a fork, what type of clothes are appropriate for different situations, or how to greet someone politely. Mores are more serious moral injunctions or taboos that are broadly recognized in a society, like the incest taboo. Codified laws are norms that are specified in explicit codes and enforced by government bodies. A crime is therefore an act of deviance that breaks not only a norm, but a law. Deviance can be as minor as picking one’s nose in public or as major as committing murder….

    The Labelling Theory of Crime

    The labelling Theory of Crime is associated with Interactionism – the Key ideas are that crime is socially constructed, agents of social control label the powerless as deviant and criminal based on stereotypical assumptions and this creates effects such as the self-fulfilling prophecy, the criminal career and deviancy amplification.

    Interactionists argue that people do not become criminals because of their social background, but rather argue that crime emerges because of labelling by authorities. They see crime as the product of micro-level interactions between certain individuals and the police, rather than the result of external social forces such as socialisation or blocked opportunity structures.

  20. Dr Jim says:

    You’re allowed not to like stuff or people but you’re not allowed to promote language which demeans or attacks or intimidates the stuff or people you don’t like

    *Journalists* should be taught this lesson and be legislated against for calling it *opinion* using public platforms with no right of the same public reply from the people they attack

    Nasty bad angering journalism in print and TV has a lot to be held responsible for, it’s no wonder some folk get so riled up on social media they lose it sometimes

    If folk confined their hate speech to within the confines of their own living rooms before they went out the house who knows maybe some peace might break out

  21. Sinky says:

    O/T Scotland the Brand

    EVERY concerned businesses, customers, MPs, and everyone else with an interest should make a submission to the Scottish Select Committee as soon as possible, via the following weblink

    Scotland and Brexit: Trade and Foreign Investment inquiry
    Accepting written submissions at least until the end of June 2018. Let them know we want control of food labelling etc.

    Scope of the inquiry

    This inquiry seeks to investigate:
    What are Scotland’s priorities for future trade relations with the EU? How could these be best met in a future UK-EU trade deal?

    What opportunities will there be, following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, for increasing Scottish exports to non-EU nations? How can these opportunities be maximised?

    How well do the UK Government’s trade priorities address those areas which are most important to Scotland?

  22. gus1940 says:


    While the government action against Bright House and other similar rip-off merchants is welcome it is long overdue.

    However, the real scandal is the fact that such operations were allowed to be set up and run in the first place.

    The same applies to the Payday Loan Sharks, Betting Terminals and On-Line_Gambling with the latter still being allowed to ruin the lives of many.

    No doubt those behind said operations have long since made their fortunes from their mug customers and will have moved on to the latest scams.

    Who can forget previous scams such as Debt Rescheduling which preceded the simpler and more lucrative Pay Day Loans and the scam to end all scams Cash For Gold where the perps waited a couple of years and then tried to sell the gold back to the mugs.

    The latest money making scams are obviously the ubiquitous ads for Funeral Plans and Equity Release.

    All these scams had one thing in common – it was pretty obvious to any thinking individuals that they were preying on the gullible with non-stop advertising on day-time TV.

    Why did our wonderful government not stamp them out before they even got off the ground.

    It would be interesting to find out just who all the beneficiaries of said scams were – I bet a few were not a million miles from Westminster.

    For years I have been concerned at what appears to be v. comfortable relationship between WM and The Gambling Industry.

    Who can forget the sudden appearance under Blair without any apparent campaign or manifesto committment of the proposals for a Super Casino and multiple smaller casinos throughout the land.

    About the only good thing Gordon Brown ever did was to stamp on that plan and it was never heard of again.

  23. Sinky says:

    Also O/T

    Latest polls confirm Lab’s problem is in England outside London. Even ‘Lab Max’ projection has them 77 seats behind Tories down there. Median projection 109 seats behind and 2017 General Election result left them 98 seats behind.

    Labour party is losing members and the much hyped Labour Live music festival planned for June 16 with Jeremy Corbyn has failed to attract any big names and only 2500 tickets have been sold out of 15,000.

  24. sam says:


    “Tory voters were against the idea by 7%, Labour voters against by 12%, Lib Dems by (a slightly alarmingly small and illiberal) 3%, Remainers by 10% and Leavers by 12%.”


  25. galamcennalath says:

    Big Jock says:

    Jesus wept people……… [Rangers]

    What it shows is that the ‘club’ is openly willing to politicise football. Ok we know that it attracts BritNat fans, but this makes that stance official.

    Anyone Scottish organisation branding itself with a UK Union Flag is making a politcial statement.

    A saltire, a St George’s, or a Welsh dragon are national flags. They belong to everyone. They should have no political slant. However, in this divided UK, both the Union Flag and the EU Flag are unquestionably political and divisive.

    There are YES supporting Rangers’ fans – how do they feel about watching their team promoting BritNattery?

  26. jfngw says:

    I see someone has asked Donald Trump what he was doing for posterity, so he invited Kim Kardashian to the Oval Office.

  27. Desimond says:

    We live in a world where its a divine right to be offended.
    Content is no longer relevant, if anyone wishes to claim offence, that’s enough justification on its own for backlash.

    Now its being extended to everything in life including the Growth Commission report with whingeing folk saying Im offended it doesn’t have what I want so Im out.

  28. Luigi says:

    galamcennalath says:

    31 May, 2018 at 3:29 pm

    There are YES supporting Rangers’ fans – how do they feel about watching their team promoting BritNattery?

    The ideal response is to start wearing their Gers tops on indy marches (home kits of course). 🙂

    Why not? I would like to see all Scottish football fans wearing their team tops on indy matches. Celtic, Rangers, Hearts, Hibs,….. the lot walking together, united under one banner.

    Boy, that would fairly rattle em. 🙂

  29. Habib Steele says:

    Fred, it’s not OK to call Colin Fox a doughball, but I don’t think the police should be investigating you for it!

    Threatening speech, hate speech, offensive speech – how do they differ? Threatening speech should be investigated and the offender corrected. Hate speech is a more difficult one. Speech which encourages people to hate individuals, or a group needs to be investigated and the offender corrected. Speech which promotes hatred against ideas, ideology, religions etc. is another matter. There is, however a thin line between such hate speech, and that promoting hatred of individuals and groups.

    The present danger is the lack of a distinction between hate speech and criticism. Along with that is the notion of phobic speech. We have homophobia, transphobia, islamophobia, (Christianophobia?), religiophobia. Is there a failure to distinguish between fear which is founded on knowledge, and irrational prejudicial fear?

    I don’t fear people identifying themselves as straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transsexual. The transsexual people I know have gone from male to female or vice versa. We have, however, reached a stage in which New York City officially recognises 31 genders, and I do fear the chaos that this is bringing to society and oppression of speech by Human Rights commissions.

    “NYC Commission on Human Rights, there are now thirty-one, yes, 31, genders.

    You can forget about biology, it’s all about emotions. …

    According to the Commission, “it’s illegal to discriminate on the basis of gender identity and gender expression in the workplace, in public spaces and in housing” and businesses who violate this new law can be subject to a fine of up to $250,000.00.

    So, here’s the list:

    Bi-gendered, Cross-Dresser, Drag Queen, Drag King, Femme Queen,
    Female-to-Male, FTM, GenderBender, Pangender , Transexual/Transsexual, Trans Person, Woman, Man, Butch, Two-Spirit, Trans, Agender, Third Sex, Gender Fluid, Non-Binary, Transgender, Androgyne, Gender Gifted, Gender Blender, Femme, Person of Transgender Experience, Androgynous.

    “Gender identity” is described as one’s internal, deeply-held sense of one’s gender as male, female, or something else entirety. Gender is expressed through one’s name, pronouns, clothing, haircut, behavior, voice, or body characteristics.” Bernard

    I do fear the oppression that this will bring about.

  30. Luigi says:

    A few Indy supporters wearing Rangers tops on Indy marches would cause one hell of a stramash IMO, but perhaps if there are a few tough bravehearts out there (angry at the blatant attempt to hijack of your team and speak on your behalf), it is something that could (or should) be done.

    For goodness sake, make sure you are safe and don’t become isolated in the street if you do decide to go for it.

    Stay safe. 🙂

  31. Dan Huil says:

    Well, a butcher’s apron football shirt would certainly advertize the political situation in Scotland, especially independence. There’d be nowhere for britnats to hide then.

  32. Luigi says:

    Dan Huil says:

    31 May, 2018 at 4:04 pm

    Well, a butcher’s apron football shirt would certainly advertize the political situation in Scotland, especially independence. There’d be nowhere for britnats to hide then.

    If thousands of gers fans are already supporting indy, why should the BritNat bigots be allowed to stamp their ID on the entire club? Noone is stopping them wearing their yoon flegs but don’t try to impose your BritNattery on other Rangers supporters

    We need to be careful though. The orange nutters would take it really badly – it would be seen as a slur, a piss take, a direct attack on their ID, a clear statement that their club is not as constitutionally watertight as they thought. Yep, it may even dawn on those slow-witted fellows that it’s the beginning of the end. You know, that awful, painful “Were screwed” moment will hit hard. Who knows how they will react (other than very badly).

    Divide and conquer. 🙂

  33. boris says:

    Better together gathered together in London last week. Preparing for Indy2?? Darling to the forefront just when I thought we had seen the last of the bearded trot

  34. Dr Jim says:

    When the Rangers board unveiled the new shirt with the Union flag Stephen Gerrard is reported to have said

    Bu weeer nor in England weeer in Scotland wos the Briteesh flag doin on a Raingirs shert

    Apparently Mr Gerrard doesn’t have a complete grasp of who he signed himself up to manage or exactly what they represent as a club and what names the *fans* will call him behind his back, and of course God help the guy when he loses a game to the rival bigots

    To think we tried to create laws to help stop these nutters,and Unionist politicians with the willing assistance of the Greens reversed that decision for the sake of capturing the bigot vote

    I won’t forget that…ever!

  35. Big Jock says:

    I wonder if Uefa will have something to say about the flag on the strip. There is no British league or national team. Rangers are there for finishing third in the SPL not the British league.

    Also note that Euefa always have something to say about Palestine Flags! The Union Jack is being used to promote the Union so in this context it’s a political symbol and is divisive.

  36. Proud Cybernat says:

    Isn’t it illegal to wear any political symbols on a football strip?

  37. farnorthdavie says:

    “Making the punishment more severe…..”

    Prosecution is of course not a form of punishment; that can only follow when someone is successfully prosecuted for a crime, ie found guilty.

  38. Skyeman says:

    Before anyone gets the wrong idea, the rangers kit with the union flag is a fake. It was a mock-up which appeared on face book.

  39. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    Archived your link @Big Jock says at 2:04 pm

    Ulsterisation of Scotland continues unabated.

    No space for politics in football or any sport for that matter.

    Orange or Butchers Swastika.

    Open provocation and incitement IMHO.

  40. Dr Jim says:


    Just shows how believable it is that folk fell for it

    me too!

  41. haudonthenoo says:

    Re the supposed new Gers top. Its correct that political slogans /flags/symbols chants etc are banned.
    We were Germany for the game just before the referendum and 90% of the support had YES t-shirts , banners and / or badges. The German stewards removed what they could. “YES were a great band” didn’t wash sadly.

  42. Skyeman says:

    @Dr Jim

    Aye, the unionist press would love a story about independance supporters up in arms about a non story.

  43. Archbishop of Dork says:

    Just saw a trailer for the Britain’s Got Eejits talent show.

    Lighting arranged to create large number of union jacks behind the performers. A profile silhouette of Churchill with his hat and cigar against a UJ background. A detachment of the Guards Brigade on stage. Someone said on here the other day that there was a Vera Lynn tribute act taking part in the show.

    I don’t watch the show but when it started years ago it was largely free of all this obnoxious Britnat imagery and indoctrination.

  44. Dr Jim says:

    For those who did not see FMQs today, pop over to Nicola Sturgeons Twitter where you can see and hear a very short video of our FM handing Ruth Davidson her Arse on a dish by way of what our FM actually does do in her day job

    Enjoy the reality of the SNP at work for Scotland

  45. Bob Mack says:

    B×¥**@* them all. Shower of b$@% €£?!. I await my trial.

  46. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    Just shows there is nae trust anymore @Skyeman says at 5:00 pm

    Ukranian based journalist yesterday

    WATP FTP BlueNose knuckle draggers on Facebook today


  47. mike cassidy says:

    In theory, the Americans cut the Gordian knot of this problem by allowing anybody to say anything.

    “A bedrock principle of U.S. jurisprudence is that the First Amendment allows for hate speech, including that which denigrates people on the basis of their race, gender or sexual orientation. “

    eg Roseanne Barr broke no law by tweeting her derogatory remarks.

    Her employer broke no law by telling her to GTF for tweeting her derogatory remarks.

  48. admiral says:

    For those who did not see FMQs today, pop over to Nicola Sturgeons Twitter where you can see and hear a very short video of our FM handing Ruth Davidson her Arse on a dish by way of what our FM actually does do in her day job
    Enjoy the reality of the SNP at work for Scotland

    Dr Jim – could only have been bettered if Nicola had stuck a cheeky, wee “BTW, Ruth, when IS your next constituency surgery? Just sayin’, likes.”

  49. Bill Hume says:

    FMQ today……Ruth Davidson,

    “The truth of the matter is……”

    We have entered a new dimension…..really, we have.

  50. Old Pete says:

    QT from Scotland tonight, anyone know who is on the panel ?

  51. Ian McCubbin says:

    U just dont agree with abuse on social media.
    If facebook, twitter et al did their job by banning abusers after 1 warning then half the cases going to court would not happen.

    I block people on twitter and have a warning its that simple.
    For high profile folk its a tougher call altogether

  52. Ian McCubbin says:

    Oops U should read I in last post.

  53. Ian McCubbin says:

    Oops U should read I in last post sorry typo.

  54. Dr Jim says:

    Who owns Scotland?

    Well it would seem the English governments MOD does because as part of this wonderful new deal for Stirling council we have to buy our own land from the MOD at a cost of 5million quid

    Mundell looked slimiley happy about it though as he gives with one hand and takes away with the other
    There’s nothing worse than a greasy wee toadie house slave doing his London Massa’s bidding eh

  55. CameronB Brodie says:

    Habib Steele
    I’m all for empowering marginalised identities but I think you have good reason to be concerned. The alt-right has mobilised a far-right, race-based, supremacist politics through the gender insecurities that many white, middle-aged males feel in the post-feminist age of post-modern globilisation.

    3.2 Identities and normative representations

    Media (and other cultural artefacts) tend to represent certain groups of people in a very conventional, narrow and one-dimensional way. We might even say that media provides normative models for some groups of people, as if saying, “this is what you are supposed to look like and act like”. There has been a lot of discussion of the kind of role models the media provides for example for young girls: you have to be extremely thin, yet feminine, dress-up sexy and so on. This may create enormous pressure on young people in the process of their identity building.

    This kind of normative roles and representations have always existed in different forms in different cultures and societies, but what is different today, is the power of the media in constructing these normative models.

    Reasons of Identity: A Normative Guide to the Political and Legal Assessment of Identity Claims


  56. Dr Jim says:

    @Old Pete

    Kate Forbes for our team and the usual 4 Tories plus a hand picked audience of Triffids

    Oh aye and Dumbledore to keep Kate Forbes silent
    I’m not sure that’ll succeed though, she’s a good un

  57. call me dave says:

    For the non-twitters.

    Aye Ruthie feeding the FM the right questions 🙂

  58. Marie Clark says:

    OT Reuters reporting Senor Rajoy has lost a vote of confidence,Looks like Socialist chief Pedro Sanchez is set to be the new Spanish PM.

    My, my, what goes round comes round right enough. Wonder if will help the Catalans any?

  59. CameronB Brodie says:

    I just had a quick check of the Rev.’s twitter. I’m astonished. A non-nationalist, progressive perspective that manages to find reactionary content in what is essentially a process of social emancipation. I know I’m off-line atm but when did that happen?

  60. HandandShrimp says:

    QT tonight will have Kate Forbes, Loki and Brian Soutar as the three Scots. The Tory is Kwarteng and the Labour person Caroline Flint.

    It is actually a very odd mix. I assume the BBC are hoping the three very disparate independence supporters will argue with each other. If they don’t I think it is going to be a very weird and debate. Of course the chances are the audience will all be from the Sussex UKIP branch and want to talk Brexit.


  61. HandandShrimp says:


    It certainly unlikely to make things worse for the Catalans. One night hope at least that the vindictive thuggery will cease. I would imagine the Spanish Parliament will still say No to independence but one might hope the elected officials could be freed from prison and take up their posts and the extradition attempts dropped (not that it looks like they will succeed).

  62. All this talk of free speech what about the right to live free Palastine for example and as for the government saying they will crack down on money lenders and high interest rates what about cancelling p.p.f.contracts that affects us all thanks to Mr., Brown of the people’s party

  63. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Hi haudonthenoo at 5:21 pm.

    You typed,
    “The German stewards removed what they could. “YES were a great band” didn’t wash sadly.”

    This is the banner I’ve had on my Facebook page since 2012.

    When Pete and I started doing badges in 2014, this was one of the early ones we did, based on the above banner. It’s been rather popular at the rallies we’ve been at since indyref1.

  64. Dr Jim says:

    Jonathon Shafi folloing his *pro* independence appearance on STV says Scotland has lots of corporate elite and we should be supporting Jeremy Corbyn, Well who knew eh Shockeroony

    And Scotland collectively shouted !Aye right!

    Scotlands just loaded wae these pretendy folk just trying to get themselves on the telly then go in the huff when they don’t get what they want

  65. jfngw says:

    @Dr Jim

    I think the reason why these fake independence supporters are now on telly is because they have voiced an anti-indy line. I just think of them as unionist sleepers now, maybe I’m wrong but there seems a lot of them coming out of the woodwork.

  66. galamcennalath says:

    The Express says …. ” Tory MP BRILLIANTLY tears apart Sturgeon’s Brexit demands “

    You can tell it’s complete bovine excrement without even going to the story!

    A) No Tory MP is capable of ‘brilliance’, that just doesn’t come with their genes

    B) No Tory MP ever ‘tears apart’ Nicola’s arguments

    C) Brexit is a problem of Tory making, they’d get on better if they listened to what she says

  67. HandandShrimp says:

    ” Tory MP BRILLIANTLY tears apart Sturgeon’s Brexit demands “

    LOL – That is all. “Tory” and “brilliant” are oxymorons…much like “Express” and “truth”

  68. Fred says:

    Watched Ruth Davidson getting her arse on a plate from the FM, she’s a child!

  69. Al Dossary says:

    So I’m in Amsterdam for a few days (Punk Festival at the Melkweg over the weekend). I watched the excellent Phantom Powers video about the Faroes on the flight over.

    The first thing that strikes me on the train to Centraal is that not even one single Nederlander suffers from the “Too wee, too poor” syndrome that we in Scotland – Nay the entire British Isles – have. 300 years of Westminster abuse (or 1000 years of Westminster abuse) has taken a heavy toll on the Scottish and English psyche respectively.

    We in the UK as a whole are the most downtrodden, pessimistic and servile race in the whole of Europe. Not for much longer I hope I’m Scotland!

    Trains that run (mostly) on time, trains that actually run to the City from the airport, trams that actually take you from A to B rather yhan a 45 minute journey to Princess St. and a city laid out in the 17th century that actually still functions well in the 21st century – unless you are a car driver that is.

    Contrast that to the shambles that is every single town and city in the UK. Even the new towns, planned and built in the 1960’s. What a fucking disaster zone Scotland, England and Wales are compared to here.

    Since 1900, the population of the Netherlands has risen from 4.5m to 17M. England’s has risen from 30M to 55M. Contrast that to Scotland’s 4.5M to 5.4M population rise and you can see just how “Good” the Yoonion has been to us.

    Never mind, at least we’ll have Blue Passports made in France !

  70. ronnie anderson says:

    Al Dossary The Wings Stall have Blue passport’s made in Dundee

  71. Habib Steele says:

    Cameron B Brodie, “I’m all for empowering marginalised identities but I think you have good reason to be concerned.”

    Thanks for the links. I don’t have time to read more than the abstracts right now. I’m rather confused about gender right now. The trans people I know connect their gender with their bodies. They have used prescription drugs to conform their bodies to their new identity. That makes sense to me. A trans woman is a woman, takes female hormones, has had treatment to remove facial hair etc. To them it’s not just a matter of feelings. I affirm those women.

    I can’t get my head around all the rest of the 31 identities, many of which are unrelated to the body. Eg. fluid gender is unrelated to the condition of the body. I’m struggling to expand my perceptions.

  72. Robert Peffers says:

    People should realise there has always been, “Social Media”, but in our towns and cities in Scotland we called it, “The Steamie”, and in out villages and hamlets we call it, “yon auld Village Gossip wifie”.

    Although, even in the towns and cities, there were localised versions of, “The village Gossip”, with each housing scheme having its own, “Village Gossip”.

    I well remember, when I first came to live in Fife, overhearing an old ex-miner explaining how things worked, “In the good old days”. He was telling another, not so old, ex-miner of an alleged incident in Cowdenbeath.

    His story went that the courts had found a well known local man not guilty of sexually abusing several local children but, “everyone knew”, in the area knew this guy was, if nothing else, a rather creepy individual and guilty as Hell.

    The old guy then went on to state that, of course, it was just a coincidence that the freed, “creepie auld bastirt”, was found drowned in a local stagnant pond by an abandoned local coal-pit, and , “everyone knew”, the local miners had exacted their own form of justice and, “everyone Knew”, the local police force would never find any evidence of foul play.

    The big difference to that form of, “Social Media”, is that it is now not being promulgated by the local gossip monger or in the local steamie but on computers and mobile phones on a Worldwide basis.

  73. Jack Murphy says:

    Dr Jim said yesterday 5:33 pm:

    “For those who did not see FMQs today, pop over to Nicola Sturgeons Twitter where you can see and hear a very short video of our FM handing Ruth Davidson her Arse on a dish by way of what our FM actually does do in her day job

    Enjoy the reality of the SNP at work for Scotland ”

    Here’s the link, just scroll down to “Getting on with the day job”.

  74. CameronB Brodie says:

    Habib Steele
    I’m not a gender theorist and I’m very out of practice. I hope these help though.

    Feminism/ Poststructuralism

    Key Concepts

    Feminist post-structuralist theory can be taken as a third feminism, historically following on from, but not replacing, liberal feminism and radical feminism (Kristeva, 1981). Whereas liberal feminism mobilizes a discourse of individual rights in order to gain access to the public domain, and radical feminism celebrates and essentializes womanhood in order to counteract the negative constructions of women and girls in masculinist discourse, feminist post-structuralism troubles the binary categories male and female, making visible the constitutive force of linguistic practices, and dismantling their apparent inevitability.

    Post-structuralist analysis begins, then, with the discursive and regulatory practices in the texts of science, of literature, of philosophy and of everyday life. It calls into question the grand narratives through which the humanist/modernist individual is made into the heroic, creative origin of him- or herself, and it shows, in contrast, how individuals and their social and geographical worlds are made possible in relation to each other. Feminist post-structuralist theorizing focuses in particular on the speci?c processes whereby individuals are made into gendered subjects. [accessed Jun 01 2018].

    Explorations of Gender Identity A Study of Masculinity and Gender Predicaments in Cormac McCarthy’s Suttree;sequence=1

    A Very Short Summary of Poststructuralist and Queer Feminist Theory and Practice

  75. Foonurt says:

    Jesus wept – muckle lassie’s bloose.

  76. Cactus says:

    Good question, interesting answers England…

    Flucked if aye ken like!

    Tomorrow and…

    Tomorrow et..

    Ra morra. 😉


  77. Gary says:

    Well, we DO already have people being jailed for what they SAY rather than what they DO. NB I know that’s not EXACTLY the issue at point.

    In many cases before the courts, some of which we hear about and some of which we don’t, people are being jailed for what has been said by them on facebook, chatrooms, WhatsApp, personally to others etc.

    We don’t worry about THOSE cases though, because THOSE cases are about Jihadists who want to cause ‘terror’ and advocate for beheading those who insult Islam rather than hanging paedophiles.

    It’s NOT what you say, it’s WHO you say it about.

    NB I’m not ‘pro-terrorist’ but as food for thought we should note that many of the laws being used to prosecute Jihadis are prosecuting them for the ‘reason behind’ what they do and not (or not ‘so much’) the offence itself.

    And that’s fine, or at least that’s fine as long as it’s never misused. And who decides what IS and ISN’T a misuse of a law?? Our government??

    Beware of ‘anti-terror’ laws and ‘Patriot Acts’ They’re all fine and dandy until you’re on the wrong end of it when you’re not a terrorist and someone has decided to get round their lack of evidence of an offence by using anti-terror law on you simply because you’re annoying (this has already happened to the guy who constantly harassed his local cops by photographing them parking on double yellows following his conviction for a motoring offence, they detained him using anti-terror legislation knowing FULL WELL he was an annoyance and not a terrorist)

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