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Believing Her

Posted on December 13, 2021 by

This is the last piece of data from our recent Panelbase poll.

Click image to enlarge. Full data tables here.

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    639 to “Believing Her”

    1. Hatuey says:

      Seasons greetings, Andy.

      You say;

      “Francis Fukuyama is now pretty widely seen as having called it wrong when he declared the “end of history” in 1989, where Western liberal democracy was seen as the irreversible and inevitable end point of mankind’s ideological evolution. However I’m not sure I and many others are ready to throw in the towel just yet and accept that the best we can expect is a Hobson’s choice between Christopher Coker’s alternatives of a slide into either oligarchic “Western” authoritarianism, or demagogic “Asian” (i.e. Chinese and Russian) totalitarianism.”

      Hmmmmm. I suspect in rejecting western authoritarianism and Asian totalitarianism you are making an argument for the sort of “end” that old Fukuyama had in mind.

      For what it’s worth, I more or less agreed with gist of ‘the end of history’. I think there’s more pressure on China and Russia to westernise than there is on the west to do anything more than make a few tweaks.

      And I think the poorer countries of the world and their people want to be more like the west — it’s a cruel irony that the policies of the west are the biggest barrier to them doing so…

    2. Andy Ellis says:

      @Hatuey 2.07 pm

      Compliments of the Season to you too bud: hope you and yours had a good one?

      I always thought Fukuyama’s “endism” was a bit suspect TBH (although he has himself repented and accepted his thesis was wrong I seem to recall?). I tend to agree with the late Paul Hirst who savaged Fukuyama’s thesis at the time. He said:

      “History is not at an end because there are major new ideals. A revitalised democratic Europe is one; the defence of our world environment is another; and, as an essential part of that cause, so is the challenge of creating a world in which all can enjoy a decent standard of life and have democratic self-government. If history is the struggle for freedom, then its end has been well and truly postponed.”

      I think Hirst’s view of a middle way is probably more convincing:

      “Fukuyama supposes the free market and the command economy to be polar opposites and ignores what may lie in between. In fact, the economically successful Western democracies have tended to pursue a middle way in which the market is regulated, in which co-ordination takes place but not by means of centralised planning – rather by the active consultation of the major organised social interests. The result is an economy far removed from a free-for-all, an economy in which the enhancement of the influence of social groups through consultation offers a route to greater democratic accountability.”

      I don’t think the neo-imperialism of Beijing or Moscow is much of an alternative for the ordinary people in poorer countries who bridle at the West’s approach to development, “aid with strings” etc. though it has obvious attractions for the kleptocracies who are often in charge of many third world states.

    3. Republicofscotland says:

      “As we’ve seen even here in Scotland there is a level of authoritarianism from that state that, while not on the level as seen in China, the West can’t possibly take the moral high ground on individual political freedoms against more authoritarian countries.”

      Pacman.

      Oh but they do, the West know no bounds when it comes to hypocrisy, Victoria Nuland the USA’s Under Secretary for State and Political Affairs, said of the USA’s 2014 backed coup in Ukraine, with EU interests in mind “F*ck the EU”.

      The US and its Nato minions exploit greatly Eastern Europe’s checkered past with the USSR/Soviet Union, now Russia, grievances, some of which are justified, but not enough for war.

      Nato members can’t take the moral high ground, US bases have been in the process of and still are attempting to surround China and Russia, imagine if the shoe was on the other foot, and China and Russia set up bases in say Venezuela, or Nicaragua, or Cuba, do you think the great Satan (USA) and its minions would stand for that?

      Don’t let others fool you into believing that the bad guys are China, Russia, Iran, etc, Christ Iran was a founding member of the UN, and the last I looked it hadn’t invaded any other country since ancient times or there abouts.

    4. PacMan says:

      @ Andy Ellis

      There is nothing in my post where I was advocating Russia’s or China’s position on TRA or any other issue. I was merely suggesting if there is a possibility that the rise of these issues here in Western cultures is due to a sort of new war of ideologies between the global superpowers where Western countries are now focusing on laissez-faire social libertarianism rather than liberal democratic ideals as they had did in the past?

    5. PacMan says:

      @ Republicofscotland

      It could be argued that there is a parallel between what is happening with Nato’s involvement in Ukraine and the Cuban missile crisis of the Sixties.

      The US were prepared to go to war over potentially having missiles in their backyard so why is it any different that what is happened now?

      Here’s a thought experiment to further this point. Imagine we got independence in 2014 and invited the Russians over for instance to offer technical assistance to deal with operating the nuclear bombs we have on our soil, there would have been a holy hell kicking out over it.

      Not seeing Russia as the bogeymen that the MSM likes to paint it as doesn’t mean wholeheartedly supporting them. They are an independent sovereign nation who are pursuing what is best for them which at teams is contrary to our own. However, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t respect them and the territorial and security needs.

    6. Hatuey says:

      I think when fukuyama and others use terms like ‘democracy’ they are speaking in code and really mean capitalism. They stopped referring to capitalism and capitalist powers in most history and politics books in the late 1940s; preferring terms like “the west”, “western democracies”, “first world”, “liberal democracies”, and such. It’s as if capitalism simply disappeared.

      It sounds like Hirst agrees.

      I see those concerns that Hirst refers to as “tweaks” though. I don’t think all countries will ever end up striking the exact same balance between the state and the free market but, at the same time, the differences are all within quite a narrow band when it comes to first world countries.

      The most compelling point is that there’s no serious alternative. We might face an existential threat from global warming, we might want to revitalise Europe, and we might want to feed the world, but nobody is proposing any sort of radical departure from accepted norms to get there. Maybe that’s why we will never will.

    7. Republicofscotland says:

      Pacman.

      The mentality of the US, is one of Oceania must always be at war if not with Eurasia then Eastasia, there must always be a bad guy to justify the huge spending on weapons, the USA has exited Afghanistan, but the military budget has increased.

      Its the EU and non EU but European nations that I’m disappointed in, why are they going along with this madness, don’t they realise that a war between Ukraine and Russia could shift Westwards into the heart of Europe have they learned nothing from the two world wars.

      The US is prepared to sacrifice Europe to achieve its goals, Four Star General Tod Wolters who is the Supreme leader of Nato forces in Europe wants Romania and Bulgaria to be ready to support Ukraine logistically if war breaks out between Russia and Ukraine, effectively these two European countries will become staging posts.

      Europeans need to wake up and soon, Russia is a European country we should be embracing it not goading it into war. Secondly European countries need to leave Nato, doing so would weaken the USA’s belligerent plans for Russia, and lower the threat of conflict in Europe.

    8. Andy Ellis says:

      @PacMan 4.08pm

      Interesting point WRT the Cuban missile comparison, particularly as it was widely seen as a response to the USA basing Jupiter missiles in Italy and Turkey.

      It seems Russia is trying to assert the equivalent to the Monroe Doctrine over Ukraine, Belorussia and probably the former Soviet republics in the Caucasus? Of course they tried to argue against the inclusion of the Baltic States and other Eastern European countries into NATO and the EU post break up of the USSR too.

      It seems respecting territorial and security needs should cut both ways: if Putin expects “the West” to respect his, why won’t he respect those of the Ukraine and others?

    9. thomas says:

      Andy ellis 4 .48

      “It seems respecting territorial and security needs should cut both ways: if Putin expects “the West” to respect his, why won’t he respect those of the Ukraine and others”

      I dont think putin or anyone else is going to take lessons on respecting territorial or security needs from the western elite in america or the yookay do you?

      Ukraine was a country devised as i understand it by the soviets for internal purposes of the old ussr , merging two distinct regions into one large area.

      Putin has only defended the rights and territory of “russians” in ukraine the way the british defended the rights of britons in northern ireland post 1918.

      The difference being , ukraine had never been a country post 1990 , while the island of ireland had been an independent nation state.

      Every country on this earth is made up of smaller bits and pieces , the point being at the end of the day , rightly or wrongly as westminster , washington or moscow caould tell you , in their book might is right.

      I think the cuban missle crises is an interesting comparison. Im not about to cast down anyone on this earth as the “bad guy” off the back of those shysters in london or washington.

      There seems to be good and bad , give or take and respect and lack of trust on all sides in the modern world in terms of geopolitics.

      Its just a pity us too wee too poor and too stupid insular jocks are too busy hanging on to mother englands apron strings to make up our own minds.

    10. Andy Ellis says:

      @thomas 7.02 pm

      Oh, I’m sure Putin and his regime aren’t in listening mode, nor do I think it’s illegitimate for Russia to have its own security concerns. The trouble for a multi-ethnic state like Russia in the light of the argument you’re making, is that you can’t simultaneously say that Ukraine isn’t a “real” country, or doesn’t have a history in its present form, but also maintain that Russia’s borders are inviolable.

      “Might is right” often prevails, as we saw in Crimea for example, or Northern Cyprus in the 1970’s, but it won’t always be accepted. Can you imagine the reaction in Scotland if the British state post independence announced it would not accept Scotland joining the EU or NATO, like Putin has said he won’t accept Ukraine joining?

      Moscow may calculate that they can either invade Ukraine or pressurise them to formally cede majority ethnic Russian territory in the East / Donbass, or just illegally seize it like the Crimea. I’m not sure if the West would do much more than wring its hands in that event. If so I doubt the Baltic States, Poles and others would take too much comfort.

      I’m not sure what path Scotland would take post independence: however much some people might not like it, the majority are likely to be broadly in favour of membership of both the EU and NATO. Iceland, Denmark, Norway and the Baltics are all NATO members, Sweden and Finland are formally neutral but co-operate more and more with NATO and their Nordic and Baltic neighbours. FWIW I’d rather Scotland reached out to its nearest neighbours and tried to form a defensive alliance. Ah hae ma doots it’d happen tho’!

    11. thomas says:

      Andy no one is saying russias borders are inviable. Did you see the bit in my post where i said all countries in the world today are made up of different bits? Just like the multi national multi ethinc/linguoistic state that is the uk and of course the usa?

      I said the doctrine of “might is right” and the ignorance of the international rule of law if fairly standard .

      I dont hink the “bad guys ” in moscow are listening to the bad guys in london or washington when both are in breach of a un resolution , backed by the majority of nations ,to hand back the chagos islands.

      let him without sin and all that eh?

    12. Andy Ellis says:

      @thomas 9.37 pm

      I wasn’t trying to put those words in to your mouth, but it’s safe to bet Putin’s regime does think that. I agree with your sentiments: international law is an imperfect thing it’s true and there are guy few without any stain. It’s a messy business as we saw with Crimea, Donbas, Transnistria, the Caucasus……

      There are any number of areas in the world that could be flashpoints of course in Europe and elsewhere. The Ukraine does look pretty worrying tho’.

    13. Hatuey says:

      RoS: “European countries need to leave Nato, doing so would weaken the USA’s belligerent plans for Russia, and lower the threat of conflict in Europe.”

      Easier said than done. The US has about 120 military bases in Germany alone.

      There’s good reason to believe the real purpose of NATO was to contain Germany rather than communism, preventing any sort of revival of the German war machine whilst effectively neutralising German foreign policy. Those sort of arguments were made after the war when the victors were sifting through the spoils.

      If NATO’s true role was to deter communism, as they stated right through the Cold War, they would have merrily dismantled it when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1989.

      That being the case, we can see that what applied to the German goose also applies to the European gander. Europe is hamstrung by NATO’s existence; on one hand dependent on it for security and on the other disabled by it in terms of defending itself and projecting influence, exactly as the US doctor ordered.

      Now we understand the important and critical role played by those Europeans they call “Atlanticists”. It’s their job to oppose any sort of move in the EU towards common security and foreign policy.

    14. Hatuey says:

      “ ukraine had never been a country post 1990”

      Factually incorrect. It flickered for a few years just after WWI.

    15. Ruby says:

      “Female sports may become extinct with male transgender athletes’ arrival, says Putin”

      There will still be male & female sport but the female teams will be 100% transgender.

      What country, team, university would want to put themselves at a disadvantage by not having a 100% transgender team?

      Wining is important. Some will go to any lengths to win

      https://archive.is/8gxds

      After 10 weeks of pregnancy every gymnast had an abortion. They won the team gold medal by a fraction of a point, with Czechoslovakia second.

      Pregnancy doping?

      “During pregnancy your body produces a hormone called relaxin, which loosens ligaments in the pelvis to make delivery easier. But since relaxin affects all your ligaments, you’ll likely be more flexible from head to toe.”

      There would be no question of pregnancy doping with a 100% transgender team.

      Would a 100% transgender team ever beat a male team?

      What about transmen will they ever stand a chance of being in a team?

    16. Ruby says:

      https://archive.is/QosGb

      Cozy slippers tweet archived.

      Stu’s response on ‘Over Scotland Facebook’

      “So nice to see the SNP salivating over all their seats in the 2024 UK general election that they keep telling us isn’t going to happen in Scotland because they’ll have delivered independence by then.”

      Who do you think is responsible for Stu not being on Twitter?

      Cozy Slippers? David Paisley?

    17. John Main says:

      Andy Ellis cuts right through to the heart of the matter when discussion of the values of the competing economic and political blocs comes up. The USA, the EU, Russia, China, etc.

      In which directions are the penniless and the desperate heading? Do China or Russia contain 11.5 million illegal immigrants like the USA does? How many people per day cross dangerous seas to arrive in these countries on unseaworthy dinghies?

      It’s a no-brainier.

      Consideration of this incontrovertible fact also explains why the narratives so popular with some of the zealots here (the USA as Great Satan, the UK as an institutionally racist hellhole) gains so little traction with your average punter.

      Given their immediately obvious disconnect with reality, the best policy for those pursuing Scots Indy by popular, democratic means to follow, is to keep their views to themselves.

    18. John Main says:

      @Ruby 10:03

      A Catch 22 of breathtaking arrogance and entitlement from the SNP regime.

      They not only have abandoned all efforts to deliver their mandate, they now triumphantly gloat to the world that they have no intention of doing so.

      And still we vote for them.

    19. Hatuey says:

      John Main, those refugees you worry so much about (over everything else) are scrambling to get out of countries that NATO has played a big part in destroying.

      I don’t know if it’s possible to have one duck in a row, but yours is all over the place and looking very confused.

    20. Republicofscotland says:

      “How many people per day cross dangerous seas to arrive in these countries on unseaworthy dinghies?”

      John Main.

      Your naivety astonishes me, many of the people who crossed the Channel or the Med have done so because the Great Satan (USA) and its minions including the UK, razed their countries to the ground, such as in Libya and Iraq. Not only that the intent is to keep the countries in a state of chaos by backing proxy fighter in certain countries especially in Libya.

      Would you not flee with your family under those circumstances? I think most folk would, however there has been added to the just exodus a degree of economic migration of which I acknowledge.

    21. Andy Ellis says:

      @John Main 10.35 pm

      I suspect you and I are pretty far apart politically, but you are of course quite correct in your assessment of the views of the extremist fringe in here, and the disconnect not just from reality (which is a given of course) but more importantly from the POV of this site and Scottish politics in general, is totally foreign to the majority of Scots voters.

      In all the crowing recently about the latest poll showing a (small) pro-indy majority, what struck me is the fact that the 3 British nationalist parties still have the support of a total of 46% of Scots voters, despite brexit, the mishandling of Covid, BoJo the clown as PM and the recent revelations. The solid core of loyalist/unionist voters flips much more easily and naturally from blue to red than it does from No to Yes.

      I suspect Alba could be on to something in upcoming elections if it can capitalise on public disquiet about GRA reform and the protection of women’s rights as a wedge issue. It is however equally clear to anyone other than the kind of ideological zealots in here, who can unselfconsciously use terms like the Great Satan and make moral equivalences between totalitarian and authoritarian regimes like Russia and China and the West, that such views are electoral poison to most Scots.

      It’s sophomoric, student politics at its worst and will condemn any party or movement coming out with such vapid and discredited crypto-marxism to the political wilderness. There’s a reason that there is such an overlap between those sounding off about the Great Satan and those spouting climate change denial, anti-vaxxers, and “little Scotlanders” trying to paint us as a poor benighted colony being flooded by English immigrants.

      However hard the proponents of such woo-woo try, and however often they are asked, they never explain how their world view is going to advance the cause of Scottish independence, nor can the point to any significant individuals, parties or groups that support them.

      It’s almost as if that’s because they know they’re about as likely to influence outcomes as the Tooting Popular Front.

    22. Merganser says:

      Dear Stuart, If you want to treat yourself to a late Christmas present, how about a personalised number plate? It’s available at DVLA for £499.00.
      The number is… NO02SNP.
      Happy new year!

    23. Ruby says:

      It looks as if the same old argument is continuing from the last thread with some added derogatory name calling.

      I understood from posts on the last thread there were posters who felt they were ‘too good for this gig’

      You have to wonder why they are still here?

      They are sailing close to the wind & risk being ‘banned without further warning.’

    24. Ruby says:

      https://yoursforscotlandcom.wordpress.com/2021/12/28/sturgeons-legacy-of-carrots/

      Is this Mia who used to post here?

      I always thought that the Mia who posted here should be writing articles.

    25. Andy Ellis says:

      Looks like Alba is setting out its stall for next year’s local elections, centring 3 main themes: a swift independence referendum, child poverty and opposition to gender reform.

      Be interesting to see how they do, and what impact it will have on the devolutionary parties like the SNP and Greens?

      https://archive.is/u3Q5J

    26. Republicofscotland says:

      Hateuy @10.58am.

      Yes a prime example of the Great Satan’s (USA) belligerence, has manifested itself on England’s propaganda news channel the BBC this lunchtime in its “news” programme, in which it gave the mass poverty in Afghanistan at least a five minutes reporting slot.

      Of course the implication is that Afghanistan has fell deeper in impoverishment due the rise of the Taliban and the exiting of the Great Satan (USA) and its minions forces. The truth is far more uglier, with puppet presidents stealing millions if not billions in wealth from the country, whilst US firms such as Haliburton stripped the country of its rare earth elements.

      Then there’s the billions worth of gold, twenty-two tons of it, that belongs to Afghanistan but the Great Satan that look after it in a New York vault refuses to return it to the country when its people are in dire need of it, incidentally the Great Satan’s minion the UK has done a similar thing with Venezuelan gold and refuses to return it, imagine what would happen if the shoe was on the other foot.

      The states mouthpieces don’t like this kind of info to be posted, and class those who do as extreme and fringe nutters, its the usual BS.

    27. Hatuey says:

      Afghanistan, of course, is a shining example of NATO prowess when it comes to nation building, RoS. The only aspects of the nation that benefitted in that case were in the heroin production and funeral sectors.

      Note that those who are keen to suck up to the US quite flatly refuse to discuss the real existing history of its meddling in the world, preferring to keep things breezy and philosophical. I don’t blame them for that.

      The idea behind all this is that by supporting NATO and papering over the historical record, the Scottish independence movement will somehow curry favour in Washington and they’ll approve or at least keep their noses out of our business. It’s the same game Sturgeon is playing and it’s all based on a very childish misunderstanding.

      The US State dept will never support Scottish independence or keep its nose out of our business. Their client is the UK Government and it has a long list of reasons to keep the UK afloat, starting with Trident renewal.

      Scotland has no enemies in the world. There’s no good reason to join NATO and there’s definitely no good reason to associate ourselves with the Washington and London when it comes to foreign affairs, two of the most malevolent, destabilising, and resented players in the game.

    28. Andy Ellis says:

      @RoS 1.39 pm & Hatuey 2.21 pm

      It isn’t really me you have to convince, it’s the ordinary voters of Scotland. FWIW I (in common with many Scots of different political persuasions) share many of the concerns over “Western” policy in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere. The plain fact remains however that the overwhelming majority of Scots remain steadfastly in favour of a broadly Atlanticist approach to foreign policy.

      Folk are of course perfectly entitled to argue that post indy, all bets are off and we can examine what policies we want to follow and elect representatives and governments accordingly. Many of our closest neighbours – including a few that many in the movement look to for inspiration and “how to do statehood” – are of course enthusiastically pro NATO, pro Atlanticist and would look with distaste (and not a little hilarity) at a future Scottish state that was led by people who described the USA as the Great Satan.

      It’s just the same old same old: the unelectable in full pursuit of the uninterested. Advocating and campaigning for a future independent Scotland to be outside NATO will lose more votes than it gains. Of course none of the zealots advocating such radical stances really care about that: they know they have negligible support, but they don’t really care because the ideological purity of their principles is way more important than actually achieving independence.

      If wearing a Sandinista t-shirt and having a CND tattoo was all it took to be independent they might be on to something of course…..

      In the meantime, the grown ups will be advocating policy platforms that are actually likely to appeal to a majority of Scots – including some of the 46% of British nationalist voters stubbornly voting Labour, Tory and LD. How many of them find leaving NATO a vote winner I wonder?

    29. Dan says:

      Ruby says: at 9:19 am

      What about transmen will they ever stand a chance of being in a team?

      With regard to gymnastics, I’m guessing it’ll be unlikely we’ll see a transman nailing a Maltese cross or the crucifix move on the rings for the foreseeable…
      Caveat. At least until the force of gravity diminishes or competitors starting to dope with helium becomes a thing…

    30. Andy Ellis says:

      I see (from James Kelly’s twitter feed) that Jason McCann has posted a cri de coeur on his blog “Random Public Journal” having another go at Alba:

      https://randompublicjournal.com/2021/12/28/the-failure-of-solidarity/

      On the assumption that my comment to his piece may not pass moderation, I thought I’d take the liberty of posting it here, just in case folk were interested in the issues being discussed there:

      “I’m sorry Jason, but Craig Macinnes is right. Many of us in the movement abandoned the SNP over the past few years and the proximate causes of that might vary from person to person, but the SNP’s attitude to GRA, self ID and its othering of people like Joanna Cherry was a very large part of the disenchantment for many. However hard you and others try to caricature Alba as a right leaning, socially conservative party, whether from simple lack of knowledge or with ill intent, it simply won’t wash.

      The idea that the many women in particular who are opposing extreme trans rights activism, and being cancelled for it, are “of the right” is puerile. Cancel culture, de-platforming ideological opponents, and othering them – all the hallmarks of extreme TRA and the cabal surrounding Sturgeon – is a movement firmly rooted in the American alt-right, from the Tea Party and Trumpist incels raging against liberal elites on US college campuses. The idea that people like Joanna Cherry, Joan McAlpine, Maya Forstater, Kathleen Stock represent anything other than the mainstream is beyond ridiculous. It is you and others who support your take on the issue who represent the regressive minority, and who pander to misogyny and regressive men’s rights movement.

      Alba will only succeed by representing those in the independence movement who feel the SNP no longer represents either their values, or any real desire to push for independence as soon as practicable. It is the SNP which has been captured by a regressive cadre of ideological zealots, not Alba. Either it’s rank and file membership will rectify that, or it will become the Irish Parliamentary Party de no jours: happy with the cosy bromides of devolutionary politics, content to have power for power’s sake as the big fish in a devolutionary pond, rather than hazard everything for the chance of the clear saltire blue sea of independence.

      How someone steeped in Irish republican politics as you appear to be can’t see the SNP for what it has now become is beyond me. If the SNP can’t be reformed, it must be destroyed, just as Sinn Fein replaced the IPP. When the SNP fails to deliver on the promised #indyref2 – as it inevitably will – perhaps the scales will fall from the eyes of Scottish voters. It will of course be no thanks to you and others who have exited stage left, pursued by the imaginary bear.”

    31. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Andy Ellis says at 28 December, 2021 at 5:48 pm.

      I would suggest that’s a fair summation.

    32. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Andy Ellis 5:48pm
      I agree with Bdtt. Spot on post from you. I would add traditional SNP voters can’t believe the transformation of the SNP in a relatively short time. Of course power and control centralised to a few people results in poor decision making. The vortex of decline is now unstoppable for the SNP. And the members that remain can’t stop it happening. A sad demise for the party but an opportunity for Alba.

    33. Robert Hughes says:

      Andy Ellis @ 5.48

      We’re miles apart on * certain subjects * but that is an excellent post and response to yr man’s bafflingly stupid comments about ALBA .

      Well said

    34. Ruby says:

      Jeggit FFS! I wish I handed wasted my time reading his guff. I’m amazed that anyone could be bothered commenting on his article.

      See his tweet

      https://archive.is/M13O7
      He writes:
      ‘To deny the humanity of others is a species of murder. It is a mortal sin.

    35. Ruby says:

      It’s great that Alba are listening to women by opposing self-id.

      Opposing self-id is fine for the moment but that doesn’t really solve the problem.

      I think we are a progressive enough society to accept transwomen as transwomen no need to label them women.

      Transwomen should have their own safe spaces, rape crisis centres, changing rooms, opinions, sports & lingerie shops where they can buy lingerie that fits.

      https://archive.is/5s7Wi

      “Underwear designed for cis women have smaller gussets.” A gusset is that flap of fabric at the bottom of your underwear that covers your groin. “These gussets in underwear for cis women just aren’t wide enough to accommodate the differences in anatomy,”

      That might be something Marks & Spencers should be looking into.

    36. Breastplate says:

      Andy Ellis,
      I agree with much of your 5:48pm post, well done!
      However you still need to remove your rose coloured spectacles regarding the UK and the USA’s interaction with the rest of the world.
      RoS and Hatuey have valid points and it is completely irrelevant if you believe it to be a majority view or not, nor whether it’s a vote winner or not.

    37. PacMan says:

      It does seem to be looking like the issue with the SNP isn’t that it is ultra-progressive or woke but as Tannadice Boy mentioned due to poor decision making within it’s organisation.

      I know it is pop psychology but I also wonder if SNP supporters are using TRA as a sort of coping mechanism with the fact deep down they know that independence is not happening under Sturgeon but unable to accept it so instead they lash out at Alba supporters and those against the issue?

      Maybe it is simply just siege mentality where they have dug themselves in such a hole with TRA that they are unable or unwilling to admit how unpopular it is with the wider public and just lash out willy nilly?

    38. Tannadice Boy says:

      @PacMan 8:43pm
      An interesting post. Worthy of thought. I think the bog standard SNP supporter is horrified with TRA. They are losing traditional supporters by the drove. Nero type situation, you maybe ostracised if you disagree. So they go along with it. We will never win Independence without the energy and passion of the movement. And guys like Chris MP Dundee West should know that. He travelled in a fire engine around Scotland. The Spirit of Independence was the motif and dream. If only now.

    39. Andy Ellis says:

      @Breastplate 8.36 pm

      As I said, I’m not and never have been uncritical of US, UK or NATO policies. I don’t see it as wearing rose tinted spectacles at all. In the best of all possible worlds of course, I’d like to see things play out differently, but as the old Jute Mill song goes: “Oh dear me, the world’s ill divided”.

      I’d personally love to see NATO consigned to the dustbin of history and European countries form their own defensive collective defence organisation. I won’t be holding my breath however, and the example of the EU in terms of democracy (the Greek financial crisis, Catalan self determination, rising populism in Poland and Hungary) is hardly grounds for optimism.

      Despite those here who appear convinced I’m a spokesperson for the 77th Brigade, or a Sturgeonite stooge, or “English Ellis” to use the roaster Gareth Wardell’s phrase, I’ve become convinced over recent years that the best option for Scotland in the immediate pre and post independence period would be to advocate remaining outside the EU and NATO, then asking the Scots people – in light of events and the political and economic environment at the time – what future they wanted to see.

      If you think the cause of independence, still less its achievement, is better served by promoting polices and a platform we KNOW are inimical to the views of the overwhelming majority of “ordinary Scots”, I really don’t know what to say to you.

      Feeling morally superior is no substitute for actually winning.

      If you think giving any comfort to the kind of misguided folk who call the USA the Great Satan helps the cause you’re delusional, sorry.

    40. Ruby says:

      Don’t the Tories have exactly the same policy vis a vis self id as Alba?

      Is it just ‘self id’ that people have a problem with?

    41. PacMan says:

      @Tannadice Boy 8:59 pm

      It was mentioned in here a good while back about the SNP turning into a cult under Sturgeon and IIRC, a comparison was made with Sabbatai Zevi followers:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabbatai_Zevi#Disillusion

      With the pandemic, people have a lot more time on their hands and I’ll bet the SNP supporters who blindly support Sturgeon have been doing a lot of thinking.

      They must surely known that she isn’t going to deliver indy. Are they going to drop their pride and admit they were wrong or go down with the sinking ship defending the likes of Sturgeon and her cohorts while they moves on to the next step of their career?

      Judging by the output of Jeggit as posted in here, it looks like they are.

    42. PacMan says:

      Ruby says: 28 December, 2021 at 9:09 pm

      Don’t the Tories have exactly the same policy vis a vis self id as Alba?

      Is it just ‘self id’ that people have a problem with?

      The Tories will huff and puff about Self-Id but when the push comes to the shove, collectively they will go quiet as they don’t want to be seen as too Tory, particularly on these issues.

    43. Andy Ellis says:

      Just seen this posted on my Alba branch FB page and thought it might be of interest to some Wings folk. More clear water between Alba and the devolusionists in the SNP. Good!

      “For those who are interested in the Motions that were passed at the Alba Parties first National Council:

      Approved Motions

      Local Elections – Leigh Wilson, Acting Local Government Convenor

      Council instructs NEC to prepare our manifesto for the local elections for unveiling at the ALBA Spring Conference.

      ALBA intends to stand candidates across Scotland. In addition to the overarching importance of individual ward and local authority issues, each candidate will include at least the following three themes in their election prospectus:
      First, the commitment that every elected ALBA councillor will support an Independence Convention to be composed of all elected representatives at parliamentary and local authority level which will call on the Scottish Government to exercise the existing mandates for independence to initiate independence negotiations with Westminster.

      Second, each elected ALBA Councillor will campaign for ALBA’s five-point plan to combat family and child poverty passed by Annual Conference, the greater part of which can be implemented at local authority level in co-operation with the Scottish Government. That comprises:
      A £500 annual payment to every low-income household in Scotland
      Universal free lunches and breakfasts to all nursery, primary and secondary pupils in Scotland, provided on an all-year-round basis.
      A doubling of the Educational Maintenance Allowance to assist 30,000 of school and college students from poorer families to continue in education.
      Universal free access to sports facilities for the under 18s, benefiting 1 million children.
      Increase the Scottish Child Payment to £40 per week for 400,000 children in quarter of a million households.

      Third, each ALBA candidate will give priority to the ALBA equalities platform including the protection of women’s single-sex spaces as defined in the current Equalities Legislation and the support of the right to speak out against any threat to these hard-won rights.

      COP 26 and Carbon Capture – ALBA Youth; Christina Hendry, Josh Robertson
      Council condemns the U.K. Government’s decision, on the very eve of COP26, not to support the Scottish carbon capture proposals and notes that this is the fourth time since 2007 that Westminster has sabotaged similar initiatives, further notes that the U.K. and Scottish climate change targets require a carbon capture initiative to meet our climate change commitments and declares that this decision illustrates the case for independence so that Scotland’s resources can be utilised both to benefit the Scottish people and to fulfil our obligations as responsible international citizens.

      Investment in Rail – ALBA Parliamentary Group; Kenny MacAskill MP, Neale Hanvey MP
      That this Council regrets that rail fares and journey times are vastly higher in Scotland than in other European countries where comparable distances are quicker and cost less; commends the record of Catalonia and Spain who have invested in high speed rail infrastructure compared to Scotland which is stuck in the “slow lane”; notes that the journey time from Barcelona to Madrid takes 2 hours 30 minutes to cover 315 miles compared with Glasgow to London which takes over 4 hours 30 minutes to cover 343 miles; believes that investment in rail is essential for commuters, tourists and businesses; calls on the UK Government to reverse the Budget cut in Air Passenger Duty (APD) and instead invest this in making rail fares competitive with air fares; notes that trains generate 10 times less CO2 than planes; believes that the Agreement at COP26 in Glasgow shows there is now a pressing need to bring about the modal shift from air to rail travel in order to reduce CO2 emissions; and urges the Scottish Government to prioritise investment in rail infrastructure to reduce journey times and cut fares, to allow Scotland to meet its ambition to achieve net zero and to benefit rail passengers, the economy and the planet.

      Currency – ALBA Aberdeenshire; Hamish Vernal, David Henry
      Council notes the National Assembly discussion on economic policy and the necessity in terms of effective economic management for an independent Scotland to introduce its own currency at the earliest opportunity. Council instructs the NEC to commission a paper on the practicalities of the currency transition and the institutional preparations required to facilitate the move.

    44. Breastplate says:

      Andy Ellis,
      I would be happy to remain outside of NATO and outside of the EU but in EFTA.
      Many people will disagree with many things any party has to offer but these things are not necessarily dealbreakers.

      Would I still vote for an independent Scotland if it was still in NATO, the answer is Yes.
      Would I still vote for an independent Scotland if it wasn’t in EFTA, the answer is Yes.
      So likewise, many people might disagree with calling the people who run the Uk and the USA a bunch of psychopathic arseholes but it might not necessarily be considered a dealbreaker for voting for an independent Scotland.

    45. Tannadice Boy says:

      @PacMan 9:16pm
      No worries Pacman. People learn, Albeit slowly. Documents were shredded without any public outcry previously. It is hard to shred an e mail receipt. Tuesday 21st December 14:30 pm. Like I said before. Chucked the dice and lost hundreds of millions. Not only a wrong call but legally contestable. Clinical observations and unless science or medicine has changed observations are the basis of both.

    46. PacMan says:

      Most people don’t know where Ukraine is, never mind what NATO is. However, if with any conversation about independence and the mere mention that an independent Scotland might not get membership of NATO, people will be scared of it.

      It is same fear of losing certainty of the known that is played on. It is the same on a whole number of subject that the unionists knows how to manipulate.

      Russia is locked into the global economy and it makes no sense for them to go to war with the West. We also hear from the unionists that Russia is a third world country that has aircraft carriers that has tugs nearby as it breaks down all the time. If the country is such a dump then why is it so feared?

      NATO lost it’s purpose after the cold war ended. It should have been disbanded or morphed into a European only entity. However, it is creating a purpose for itself by being proxies for American neo-colonanlist adventures and provoking Russia by destabilising it’s regional security.

      If you explained this to ordinary voters in conversations about independence, will they will be so fearful about potentially losing NATO membership or even care?

    47. Ruby says:

      https://twitter.com/Rab_Dickson1/status/1475784859025125377

      What people are saying about Jeggit on Twitter.

    48. PacMan says:

      @Tannadice Boy 9:48 pm

      An article that could well be of interest:

      https://www.reuters.com/business/healthcare-pharmaceuticals/safrica-study-suggests-omicron-enhances-neutralizing-immunity-against-delta-2021-12-28/

      Research by South African scientists suggests that Omicron could displace the Delta variant of the coronavirus because infection with the new variant boosts immunity to the older one.

      The study only covered a small group of people and has not been peer-reviewed, but it found that people who were infected with Omicron, especially those who were vaccinated, developed enhanced immunity to the Delta variant.

      The analysis enrolled 33 vaccinated and unvaccinated people who were infected with the Omicron variant in South Africa.

      While the authors found that neutralisation of Omicron increased 14-fold over 14 days after the enrolment, they also found that there was a 4.4-fold increase in neutralisation of the Delta variant.

      “The increase in Delta variant neutralization in individuals infected with Omicron may result in decreased ability of Delta to re-infect those individuals,” the scientists who conducted the study said.

      The results of the study are “consistent with Omicron displacing the Delta variant, since it can elicit immunity which neutralizes Delta making re-infection with Delta less likely,” they said.

      According to the scientists, implications of this displacement would depend on whether or not Omicron is less pathogenic compared to Delta. “If so, then the incidence of COVID-19 severe disease would be reduced and the infection may shift to become less disruptive to individuals and society.”

      Alex Sigal, a professor at the Africa Health Research Institute in South Africa, said on Twitter on Monday that if Omicron was less pathogenic as it looked to be from the South African experience, “this will help push Delta out”.

      It’s early days yet but if it turns out to be true, I wonder how Sturgeon will be able to spin herself out of it?

    49. Tannadice Boy says:

      @PacMan 11:00pm
      The South African evidence was largely ignored . And any amount of barriers were put up. Age difference, Summer, and inherent inferior research infrastructure etc. I was always talking about Scottish Clinical Observations. Although if you followed the Science the landscape was highlighted weeks ago in South Africa. But it didn’t follow the catastrophic narrative in Scotland so was ignored. I heard Jason Leitch on Radio Scotland today. A short memory, 100k cases by Christmas. An order of magnitude out. And that’s before the pockling of parameters.

    50. Ayeright says:

      Those that put the GRA issue above all others are entitled to do so, I have a list of issues that I deem far more important to me starting with Independence. It’s a long list and GRA doesn’t feature at all and that is definitely the same for the vast majority of Scots.

      It’s a fact that GRA is an issue argued over very loudly by a tiny minority on both sides of that debate, most people do not know what the Gender Reform Act is, and if they did they wouldn’t give a toss either way.

      If anyone expects the GRA artificially created stushie to be a problem for the SNP electorally then they need their heads examined.

    51. Hatuey says:

      Jason Leitch doesn’t like it when you quote Jason Leitch. He’s on the record saying that but he doesn’t want anyone to remind him…

      None of the half-measures that Sturgeon imposed with regards to omicron have made any difference. If case numbers seem lower than expected, it’s down to other factors.

      Christmas was 3 days ago. It generally takes 5 or 6 before people show symptoms.

      And the tide always goes out before a tsunami.

    52. Ayeright says:

      According to the ONS latest Covid infections survey, in Scotland 1 in 65 are infected, in England it’s 1 in 35 and in London 1 in 20 have the virus.

      Looks like a pretty big difference to me when the number of infections are 3 times greater in London and twice as much in England than they are here.

    53. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Hatuey 12:14pm
      The tide always goes out before a tsunami? Not necessarily it depends on the continental shelf and cycle of the wave. We could be hit with a million cases tomorrow and we would have never seen it coming. The world of Jason Leitch.

    54. Hatuey says:

      Ayeright, I don’t suppose you have data for Glasgow where every single neighbourhood is now classed as a covid hotspot?

      Don’t worry, we will catch up with England. The new metric is hospitalisations, not case numbers.

      We are back to “herd immunity” and this time they’re playing for keeps. We all get it.

      The logical implications of what PacMan posted earlier, if you care to read, are that catching omicron will provide immunity to other variants. Maybe now he will understand why I seem to have changed my tune and am all in favour of opening everything up and letting it run wild.

      This could be the end of the whole shit-show. New variants will come and go each year like flu but the population will have background immunity, thanks to omicron, and life will return to normal… the scientifically minded have been excited about that prospect for a few weeks btw.

      The big problem, as I said several weeks ago, isn’t the disease itself but the dislocation it causes in terms of shops, deliveries, and all the key services that keep us going. I see they are now cutting down the isolation times, so that will help.

      I’m looking forward to this all being over so that I can rekindle good relations with those that revealed themselves to be nuts.

    55. Hatuey says:

      I’ll be honest, tannadice, I think we are going to see an explosion in cases in the next few days. I now know about 10 people with covid, several of which are family members.

      It’s nothing to worry about if you are boosted.

      Jason has been wrong every step of the way. It seems like just yesterday he was telling us masks were useless and not to bother with them. Now they’re threatening to jail you if you don’t wear one.

      January is going to be a drag but after that we go into spring with new hope.

    56. robbo says:

      Well, well here we go. Thon wumin has recalled Scot Parliament for another emergency briefing today.

      We know what that means. More restrictions on the way! Catch you in 2-3 weeks-months-years! It’s fecking all nuts.

    57. PacMan says:

      Taking a step back, this criticism of Nicola Sturgeons Covid strategy could be used to undermine the cause of independence. If Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP is incompetent or simply wrong in it’s handling of the biggest test under devolution, then why should the very notion of independence best trusted?

      As another poster had earlier mentioned, is this the type of independence we want of bland overbearing state control into peoples life and PowerPoint tractor-stats to justify it?

      It isn’t what I want and to be honest, it does look like events are spinning out of control for Sturgeon with her current handling of the pandemic so regardless of what I and any other poster on here or any other site says.

      I see that a Sturgeon apologist has just surfaced and is coming out with the scripted replies as damage limitation.

      I doubt very much it will work. The public perception of the pandemic is changing. Most people are fully aware of the dangers of the virus and have adapted their lives accordingly. They have done the right thing until now and can be trusted to continue to do so. They don’t want to be micromanaged and lied to for their own good. Also, the almost hysteric reaction by Sturgeon and her minions towards Omnicron has undermined public support in her handling of it.

      As Tannadice Boy said, she has made the wrong call on this one. However, I have no doubt she will survive. Leitch or some other of her advisers will be thrown under the bus in order to save her. The question is though, will her supporters wise up to her?

    58. robertknight says:

      Pacman

      “Taking a step back, this criticism of Nicola Sturgeons Covid strategy could be used to undermine the cause of independence”

      Sturgeon will be delighted – undermining the cause of independence is what Sturgeon’s SNP does best.

    59. Robert Graham says:

      Hatman yer talking a load of shite

      Yer serum doesn’t work and the lengths this cabal are going to in censoring everything in sight no alternative opinion is allowed it’s fkn criminal , 21 fkn months and we are in the same position before the cure was rolled out so called scientists all bought and paid for, how do I know because the ones who are pushing this useless shite are funding these honest scientists work

      3 down with the prospect of another every 8 weeks fk people will be walking dartboards , oh well there won’t be a shortage of fridge magnets

    60. Andy Ellis says:

      @Ayeright 12.00am

      You may be right that GRA as one issue will not decide outcomes: only a minority of people care passionately about one particular issue to make it the defining issue on which they choose how to vote. However, GRA may yet prove to be more important than you think it is in people’s overall impression of where parties stand.

      It’s probably too glib to say that because you personally think it is unimportant or comes way down your list of important issues, it should be ignored or parked until after we reach the sunlit uplands of independence. I’ve never found the “eyes on the prize: forget every policy difference until after indy” school of thought, even long before people knew anything about GRA. It’s a cop out.

      Alba have made a start: they’re outlining policies which they can point to as differentiators between them and other parties. Opposition to self ID and the erosion of women’s rights, and the SNPs shocking record in dealing with the rank misogyny in its ranks, will become one of the big differences we can flag between Alba and the SNP parties going forward.

      It may be true that the majority of voters either don’t (yet?) know enough about the issue, and may still not care about it or prioritise it in their voting patterns even if they do hear about it, but it IS undoubtedly an issue that is gaining traction, particularly amongst women. As others have pointed out, Alba doesn’t need to convince everyone, or “convert” most SNP supporters and voters, it only needs to become large enough to deprive the SNP or SNP/Greens of a majority and it can kill regressive and misguided policies like self ID stone dead.

      Game on.

    61. Ruby says:

      https://archive.is/QXAXc

      An article by Adam Tomkins aka Professor Pish

      It’s a fair enough article.

    62. Ruby says:

      If the Scottish branch take instructions from the their head office then the Tories will have the same policy vis a vis self id as Alba.

      It was suggested earlier in this thread that the Tories not wanting to appear as Tories would keep quiet about their policy on ‘self id’

      Would they really do that if polls are showing a very high % of the electorate oppose ‘self-id’?

    63. Ruby says:

      “Alba doesn’t need to convince everyone, or “convert” most SNP supporters and voters, it only needs to become large enough to deprive the SNP or SNP/Greens of a majority and it can kill regressive and misguided policies like self ID stone dead.”

      Will that be in 2023?

      Is this bill not supposed to be presented to parliament very soon?

    64. Ruby says:

      “It’s a long list and GRA doesn’t feature at all and that is definitely the same for the vast majority of Scots”

      Would you say this ‘vast majority of Scots’ are made up of mostly cis men?

      The GRA reforms will be a problem for the SNP if their ‘feminist’ leader appears not to give a damn about cis women.

      Very unhappy to have been forced to use the term cis.

      The answer to this question will just have to be something that one imagines ‘cos there is no way of knowing.

      Quite a lot of this imagining going on when it comes to what for example ‘the ordinary Scots’ voter thinks.

      Polls do not differentiate between trans women & cis women.
      The issue of self-id will be important to both trans & cis women but for very different reasons.

      Very unhappy about this new language also unhappy to have been robbed of ‘cis womens’ opinion.

    65. wull says:

      I have a guarantee in writing from my SNP MSP that he will oppose GRA if it ever comes before parliament. No whimper so far … but, in his defence, it hasn’t come to that yet. Maybe there are more like him, and the Sturgeon is taking cold feet – if sturgeons have feet.

      I suppose they do, since she seems to have boots … which were made for walking all over everyone. As Nancy Sinatra used to sing …

      Is it correct to see Sturgeon’s Omnicron policy as just another part of her Omni – Con policy. She conned everyone, after all, didn’t she? I myself didn’t see through her until she made that long-awaited speech which we thought would reveal her wonderful hidden plan. I can’t remember if that will have been three years ago in January, or two. but it already seems like a whole millenium – if not, an eternity – ago.

      And it really did reveal her hidden plan. She took the lid off the box and it was found to contain … precisely NOTHING. The Queen of Never-never Land had absolutely NOTHING up her sleeve, not even her elbow.

      After all, does she know what an elbow is? You could counter by saying that she has used her elbows very well, to elbow her way to the top and elbow everyone else out the door. But for me, if someone doesn’t know the difference between a man and a wummin, how os that person ever going to know the difference between an a*se and an elbow?

      After all, the Queen of Nothingness seems to be pretty short on basic anatomical knowledge. Not her subject, I suppose…

      ‘No point in my calling a friend (none left); just ask me another one instead. And stick to my specialised subject: Omnicon!

      How to con everyone…

      Her personal ambition: she is out to disprove the old dictum that you can’t fool all the people all the time. Oh yes, you can! I’ll prove it: You CAN con all the people all the time: it’s called OMNICON.

      Sturgeon swallows Salmon and cons everyone into thinking she is not a predator. And that she always — blinkety-blink-blink-blink — always tells the truth.

      If you can get away with that kind of stuff, you can get away with anything.

    66. Hatuey says:

      Robert Graham: “ 3 down with the prospect of another every 8 weeks fk people will be walking dartboards”

      Omicron is the vaccine now and by the end of January, everybody, including those with more modulated understandings of the world, will be dosed.

      Modelling suggests about 85% of the world population will have caught omicron by the end of April.

      It’s a remarkable thing, when you think about it.

    67. Andy Ellis says:

      @wull 11.55 am

      I think anyone who has such an assurance from an SNP MP or MSP should make it public. I’ve seen little evidence of SNP elected officials or activists who oppose GRA reform daring to put their heads above the parapet and face down the Woko Haram extremists in their own party who have monstered Joanna Cherry and othered any who disagree with them.

      Anyone who thinks the SNP are anything other than a deeply malign influence on Scottish politics, which has been captured by a small clique of regressive misogynists, only has to look at Tony Giugliano’s recent twitter exchanges with Alba Gen. Sec Chris McEleny.

      The TRA activists who currently hold the whip hand in the SNP have shown us how they are going to interact with “these people”. It is up to Alba to show pieces of work like Giugliano and his ilk up for the misogynistic, divisive extremists they are.

      I’m afraid like many others who have left the SNP and / or decided not to support them in future I have little faith in the claim that there are still “good people” in the SNP. Their silence in the face of the abuse of power and process in the party over recent years makes them all complicit.

      It would only take a handful of SNP MSP who disagreed with these extremists to defect, or at the very least to make their position public, to cut Sturgeon’s cabal off at the knees. The fact they have failed to do so thus far suggests that either they lack the numbers to make a difference, or that they lack the moral courage to do the right thing.

      Destroying the SNP in the short to medium term is unlikely to be feasible, but the kind of attitude displayed by Giugliano and his clueless mates suggest that there is zero possibility of the SNP cooperating with Alba, so there is little point trying. However much the few adults left in the SNP like Joannna Cherry might promote working together, the SNP can only now be regarded as irretrievably lost: it is no longer fit for purpose, nor can it be rendered so.

      Alba’s aim should be to establish itself as a party with enough support to deprive the SNP of a majority, then to ensure that it consigns the SNP to the same dustbin of history that Sinn Fein dumped the IPP into over a century ago.

    68. Ruby says:

      “only has to look at Tony Giugliano’s recent twitter exchanges with Alba Gen. Sec Chris McEleny.”

      Shame that Alba members who post here 24/7 are all talk and no action.

      If they really wanted people to look at these tweets they would post an archived link to Tony Giugliano’s recent tweets.
      Always best to do it quickly before any ‘controversial’ tweets disappear.

      Guess there are people who just like to complain about others and sit comfortably in front of their computer dictating what others should do.

    69. Ruby says:

      ‘I have a guarantee in writing from my SNP MSP that he will oppose GRA if it ever comes before parliament.’

      Should this not be ‘Reforms to GRA’ or ‘self-id’?

    70. Hatuey says:

      Good comment, Andy. It’s time for Alba to take the gloves off.

      Alba stands to gain a lot more by attacking the SNP than by trying to cooperate with them.

    71. Ruby says:

      https://archive.is/JYmiA

      “Prime witnesses in Alex Salmond leak case weren’t interviewed”

    72. Ruby says:

      Another ‘Comfy Chair’ dictating what other should do.

    73. Hatuey says:

      I’m looking forward to Sturgeon’s update in 20 minutes. We can guess what she will say; reduction in self isolation times, don’t worry about spreading if you have no symptoms, this isn’t the Christmas any of us wanted, get boosted, etc.

      She’ll string that out for an hour.

      The interesting thing to look out for will be a change in the language, away from “stopping” the spread to “controlling” the spread. That sounds like quite subtle change, but it isn’t.

      Official policy now is that we all catch omicron and through catching it we achieve herd immunity. I have no problem with that but I don’t think it sits well with Sturgeon’s ‘saviour of the universe’ position.

      All along she’s been presenting herself as the person who can stop the spread of covid. Is she going to come clean or slip up today and admit that she’s now the person that wants us all to catch it, albeit at a pace regulated by her?

    74. Andy Ellis says:

      @ Hatuey 1.35 pm

      The SNP should definitely be the target: we should be pushing at an open door given the disaffection many former supporters are exhibiting not only vis-a-vis GRA and self-ID, but also with the footdragging on #indyref2 and lack of any substantial progress on issues that they can and should be addressing like drug related deaths, land reform and child poverty.

      Interestingly Tony Giugliano’s latest tantrum about Alba made an explicit attack on Chris McEleny on the basis of his faith. As Chris rightly pointed out it’s difficult to imagine he would have couched the criticism in the same way if the object of his ire had been Moslem or Jewish.

      Unionists used to love to paint the SNP as anti-Protestant and pro Roman Catholic: perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that a party as in hoc to the devolutionary settlement as the SNP is now tacking towards the rump of British nationalist loyalists in Scotland?

      It strikes me as more than a tad hypocritical of someone like Giugliano, a man who has surrendered unconditionally to the faith based woo-woo of TRA, to make such a scurrilous faith based attack on Chris McEleny. As many of us in Scotland have long thought, anti-Catholic bigotry seems to get a free pass within the Scottish establishment, I just never figured I’d see it coming from within the SNP?

    75. Ruby says:

      Alex Salmond believes in conducting a positive campaign. That is probably the correct thing to do. There is nothing more off putting than listening to politicians trading insults.

      I get the impression that there are posters on this forum who strongly believe that insults work.

    76. Andy Ellis says:

      “I get the impression that there are posters on this forum who strongly believe that insults work.”

      Said unselfconsciously by someone who called me a cunt in BTL comments. I think there’s a name for such people isn’t there readers….? 🙂

    77. Dorothy Devine says:

      Dead right Ruby!

    78. Ruby says:

      Accusing someone falsely is not a good tactic either.

      In the end you usually get found out!

    79. Ruby says:

      https://archive.is/JYmiA

      “Prime witnesses in Alex Salmond leak case weren’t interviewed”

      Every time I read anything about the Alphabetties I have to check which one it is.

      https://archive.is/XFVuc

    80. Andy Ellis says:

      @Ruby 7.54 pm

      Yup, liars do usually get found our Ruby:

      https://wingsoverscotland.com/out-on-the-road-again/comment-page-1/#comments

      Ruby says:
      11 December, 2021 at 9:58 pm
      Andy Ellis says:
      11 December, 2021 at 9:10 pm
      @John Main 7.07 pm

      I’d agree we maybe can’t agree on what constitutes reason. I see from further up thread (3.57 pm) Ruby wonders why Hatuey, me and for some strange reason Niclola Sturgeon – the association eludes me somehow, but I for one am not flaterred – are so cocksure of our “facts” as though we had our own class of facts

      Reply

      Let me try and help you out with that one Andy Pandy.

      Try dictatorial, narcissistic, cocksure.

      Basically people who could never ever entertain the possibility that they could be wrong.

      ie.
      You, Hautey & Sturgeon.

      I’m calling you a narcissistic, cocksure dictatorial cunt and the best you can come up with for me is to describe me as ‘somewhat odd!’

      Would that be ‘a somewhat odd moon-howling crackpot?’

      Even then it’s a bit pathetic!

      owooooo! owooooo!

    81. Ruby says:

      What on earth is ‘Comfy Chair’ complaining about now?

      It must have taken a good few hours too find that post where I wrote some of my best poetry!

      There is not a single word of a lie in that post! No siree Bob not a single lie!

    82. Ruby says:

      What’s happened to ‘The Matching Comfy Chair’?

      Has he been banned for obsessively posting about Covid?

    83. Onlooker says:

      Not looked at this site for a long time. One look at this hotel fire of a comments section reminds me why.

    84. Hatuey says:

      Andy going for the low lying fruit, I see…

      To be fair, the low lying fruit asked for it.

    85. Hatuey says:

      “As many of us in Scotland have long thought, anti-Catholic bigotry seems to get a free pass within the Scottish establishment, I just never figured I’d see it coming from within the SNP?”

      It’s been quite evident for a while. OBFA, when you look into it, resulted in some quite draconian measures and surveillance directed largely at Celtic fans. Actually, as far as I know, it was only directed at Celtic fans.

      They didn’t need to resort to that with Rangers fans because their Offensive Behaviour is usually in plain view.

      Important to appear even handed though, eh? Because it’s a two sided problem, with both sides equally guilty, isn’t it?

      These are Scotland’s “necessary illusions”. All countries have them.

    86. Benhope says:

      Delighted to hear that Ghislaine Maxwell has been found guilty of 5 of the 6 charges of sexually abusing minors.

      Prince Andrew is heavily involved in this case. I welcome the end of the monarchy in Scotland and thank you Betty, for your years of service to England and treachery to Scotland.

    87. Hatuey says:

      Interesting, benhope. I didn’t expect that. Is it too late for her to cut a deal in return for a reduced sentence?

    88. Ruby says:

      Ruby says:
      29 December, 2021 at 7:54 pm
      Accusing someone falsely is not a good tactic either.

      In the end you usually get found out!

      I get it now

      He’s so vain
      He probably think this post is about him
      He’s so vain (so vain)
      I bet he thinks this post is about him

    89. Ruby says:

      https://archive.is/ALJpK

      I’ve been re-reading this article.
      Dani Garavelli wrote:

      ‘In comparison with Jackson, Salmond came across as dignified. The consensus amongst the journalists beforehand was that it would be disastrous for him to testify; but we were wrong.

      Some of his charisma revived in front of an audience. He spoke and moved his hands like the accomplished politician he is, and had dates and facts at his fingertips.’

      In the same way as he did in the Holyrood Inquiry.
      How could journalists have gotten it so wrong? Good that for once they owned up to their mistake.

      I did the jigsaw and yes I would say Dani Garavelli is ‘guilty as charged’

    90. Ruby says:

      Is Ghislaine Maxwell one of these women who would go to any lengths to please her man or was it for the money?
      Love or money?

      “Shortly after the verdict, her legal team said they were already working on an appeal. “We firmly believe in Ghislaine’s innocence,” her lawyer, Bobbi Sternheim, told reporters.”

      I was going to suggest that now she has nothing to lose she might spill the beans but perhaps she’ll stay quiet until after the appeal.

      That might depend on who is paying the most. I’m sure Bobbi Sternheim isn’t working for nothing.

      Would any tabloid be able to match the amount of money that might be forthcoming from others implicated in the case?

    91. Ruby says:

      ‘What charges does she still face?
      The two perjury counts relate to allegations that Maxwell lied under oath about her role in Epstein’s abuse during a deposition for a separate civil suit in 2016.

      Nathan in April granted Maxwell’s request to sever the two charges from the rest of the counts.

      The two perjury counts each carry a maximum prison sentence of five years.’

      PERJURY!

      It took awhile but she was eventually charged.

    92. James Che. says:

      This is for the independence supporters that still look in.

      This was one of those moments where England thought that they needed to make Scots law easier for themselves to understand, so decided they would codify and index it for their own benefit.

      Interfering in pre— union Scots law wether obsolete or not in their personal minds and thoughts still breaks the treaty of the Union,
      As Scots law was to be retained in Scotland in the treaty.

      Apparently you can imagine a reason if you are a Lord.

      Hansard. Millbanksystem.com
      Hansard. 1803 — 1960s —1964
      July 1964—22 July 1964
      Common sitting — orders of the day
      Statue Law Revision ( scotland) Bill ( Lords)
      Deb 22 July 1994 Vol 669 cc 625–39

      Order for second reading
      Motion made, and questions proposed.
      That the bill be now read second time 10.11 p.p.

    93. Robert Graham says:

      Maxwell will be found dead shortly , the information she has or had will never be made public ,

      A surprisingly quiet media whose coverage of this whole case has been a revelation by its non coverage and implicates the great and the powerful this whole story will disappear very quickly.

      The corruption of our media and judicial system is there for all to see remember Dunblane and the 100 year suppression of all the evidence uncovered, who was this to protect ? , it was to protect the same people who were involved in this case.

      Yep these people are above the Law and everyone who is in any position of authority in Scotland has been bought starting with the First Minister the security services have enough on her to guarantee her silence, she won’t be doing anything that’s not authorised.

      Why have our trusted MPS And MSPS not challenged this 100 year suppression order ? The whole system in Scotland is rotten beyond belief and people believe they live in a democracy what a sick fkn joke.

      Oh by the way Happy New Year , anyone care to guess what the shite shovelers have in store for the next round of terror inducing mass hysteria ? their efforts have worked well so far a whole country shittin themselves and scared of their own shadows and needing to be told when to piss where to piss and how long they have to accomplish the task, Aye truly the promised land .

    94. Republicofscotland says:

      This typical of this SNP government they are full of promises but deliver on very few of them.

      Drug minister in Scotland Angela Constance talks a good game but, but her actions speak louder. Meanwhile Scotland remains the drug death capital of Europe, we also have the most people in prisons in Western Europe.

      Sturgeon and her clique are far to busy focusing on self-Id and the GRA, to give a hoot about dying Scots. Juryless trials also take precedence.

      “SCOTTISH Government efforts to cut drug deaths are in “disarray” after the heads of the taskforce set up to tackle the problem quit over a row with the minister in charge.”

      “Professor Catriona Matheson and former senior police officer Neil Richardson resigned as chair and vice chair of the Drug Deaths Task Force (DDTF) just before Christmas.”

      “The Daily Record revealed the pair quit after a dispute with Angela Constance, the SNP minister for drugs policy, over a demand to speed up the group’s work.”

      “Opposition parties said the Government’s response to the drug deaths crisis was heading “back to square one”.”

      https://12ft.io/proxy?q=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.heraldscotland.com%2Fpolitics%2F19815384.government-drug-death-experts-quit-row-snp-minister%2F

    95. Republicofscotland says:

      The Resolution Foundation has said that next year families will take a £1,200 pounds hit, in a combination of price rises, including fuel costs and National Insurance.

      The Bank of England expects inflation to hit 6% in the coming year,(Spring) which translates to in most cases the erosion of any wage rises. Add in that new UK rules on importing EU products comes into force on January 1st thanks to Brexit and the perfect storm is in place to hammer folk economically.

      Sturgeon has wasted mandate after mandate, and tried to save England from itself instead of saving Scots from this union. Okay independence might not have mitigated everything that’s coming down the pipeline, but having a government that has all the levers of government in place to pull, instead of waiting on a foreign countries government to trigger some of them would have eased things a bit in Scotland in the coming year.

      As it stands Scots are in for a full blown tsunami in economic terms, you can thank Sturgeon and her gutless MSPs at Holyrood for it.

    96. Ruby says:

      https://twitter.com/UKMPtweets/status/1476166123649437699

      The account most mentioned by Scottish National Party MPs in the last 24 hours was:
      @DebbieHayton

    97. Ruby says:

      https://twitter.com/DebbieHayton/status/1476567437491507208

      This is what the SNP MPs were listening to.

      Debbie said:

      “Women are female transwomen are male.
      Male is not female we are different and to deny that is to deny reality.
      This is what we’ve been trying to do and this is why we have a problem.”

      How will the SNP MPs respond.
      “But she who must be obeyed said ‘Transwomen are women’
      Debbie Hayton is transphobic’

    98. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Ruby 5:48pm
      Transwomen are Transwomen. Women are women. There fixed it. No charge applied. I would expect women to not vote SNP in the May elections. It’s only through electoral defeat will the SNP listen. Today they were at it again. The Scottish BMA are not representing their members. But we can’t get the real narrative out there. What’s the big worry amongst practising hospital Doctors. An increasing number of patients presenting with advance medical conditions. Great for them who are dealing with these presentations. They are interested in medicine which is why they joined the profession. 3 deaths yesterday thousands later.

    99. Ruby says:

      ‘I would expect women to not vote SNP in the May elections.’

      How will we know if women aren’t voting for the SNP?

      Transwomen who for the most part will be ‘friends of Nicola’ will be registered as women.

    100. Ruby says:

      ‘An increasing number of patients presenting with advance medical conditions.’

      Would this be down to all cervical, breast and bowel cancer screening programmes being put on hold.

      I would imagine there is going to be a whole load of problems in all areas of health care.

      Meanwhile the Greens & the Rainbow SNP are prioritising trans health care.

    101. Ruby says:

      What on earth do the TRAs think they are doing?

      They are turning everyone transphobic.

      They might have been much maligned before all this but now they are heading towards being the most hated group of individuals on the planet.
      Supported 100% by Nicola Sturgeon.

      Debbie Hayton is correct they are damaging trans rights.

    102. John Main says:

      @Onlooker 29 Dec 9:44 pm

      “One look at this hotel fire of a comments section …”

      Easy enough to snipe from the sidelines Onlooker.

      Why don’t you post a few comments of your own, show us how it is done. Just for once, I think I can speak for all of us. We are all keen to learn. None of us think we already know it all.

    103. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Ruby 7:15pm
      Easy, if the Snp win. Then women voted for them. They represent the majority voting capacity in Scotland. Time for them to accept responsibility and stop blaming men. You can’t expect men to worry about it. They voted for this.

    104. John Main says:

      @Hatuey 29 Dec 1:12 am

      “I am looking forwards to rekindling good relationships with those who revealed themselves to be nuts”

      You will be spending some time in front of a mirror then Hatuey. I well remember your frequent posts about how “deadly” Covid was, long after the fatality stats were well known and proven. I used to try to set your worst hyperbole in context, as I clearly recall.

      So try not to be too hard on yourself. It is still the season of goodwill.

      And with Hogmanay almost upon us, resolve not to be nuts in 2022.

    105. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Ruby 7:28pm
      Not necessarily although this maybe a small contributory factor. A missed screening is not going to account for the actual deaths in future. The real reason people are not presenting early enough. They are worried about presenting when the televised narrative is the NHS is overwhelmed. Which of course it isn’t. There is a time lag on this situation. Cancer etc patients die long.

    106. Hatuey says:

      “I well remember your frequent posts about how “deadly” Covid was, long after the fatality stats were well known and proven.”

      And I remember how dismissive you and the other crackpots were when it came to the lives of older people, for whom the virus was indeed deadly.

      Forgive me for not assuming the role of God and taking it upon myself to decide who deserves to live and who deserves to die.

    107. PacMan says:

      At the time of writing this post the Scottish government has a policy of 10 days self-isolation and continuing of restrictions.

      The narrative to justify this is to stop the NHS from being overwhelmed, not due to increased hospitalisations but by staff shortages.

      It may sound logical and of course there is medical evidence to justify it but considering in England has 7 day self-isolation as long as two negative tests are produced, is that not a better way to stop the NHS from being overwhelmed?

      Northern Ireland and Wales have joined England with this and in America, they have cut self-isolation to 5 days. I’ve just a feeling that Nicola Sturgeon will do the same but it begs the question, why are they not doing so sooner?

      It does seem that they are unable to change policy if it is not going well. I don’t know if it is bad leadership, shaping policy by headline or simply out of touch.

      Another thing that I wonder is how much Scottish government is policy dictated by their health advisers. No doubt by nature, medical professionals are driven by caution and their advice reflects it but this is a democracy, not a technocracy and in politics, advisers advise, ministers decide.

      There’s growing evidence that Omnicron isn’t as deadly as previous variants and we are in a totally different position than we was last year.

      The economy needs to be kept going and that can’t be done if large number of people are in self-isolation for a long period and they might not need to. Governments have to take in consideration a wide number of factors including health when deciding policy but the Scottish government doesn’t seem to be able to do that.

      Despite what I said in previous posts, I’m not so sure now that the SG governments current handling is going to threaten them in any way. The reality we have to face is that the Scottish public is used to and resigned to having mediocre governance at Holyrood.

    108. PacMan says:

      The thing about this Maxwell/Esptein affair was how the victims were attacked as not being that young, they got paid etc.

      From what I can gather, most of the victims were targeted because they came from poorer backgrounds. I wonder if this would have went on for so long if one of the victims came from a higher socio-economic group?

      The whole thing reeks not only of misogyny but also classism.

    109. Tannadice Boy says:

      PacMan 9,;57pm
      There is lot in your post. I will comment on the last paragraph. The Scottish Public don’t know what’s happening in the SNHS. We need a fully functioning media for that

    110. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      And the media is skewed by something or other, Tannadice Boy.
      Draw your own conclusions…

    111. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Brian Doonthetoon 11:59pm
      Hi Brian
      I was in Dundee today visiting. An auld guy (my dad) who after an acquired Covid infection in Ninewells is hanging on to next Tuesday. Why?. He will be over the 28 days. His death certificate will record his true cause of death. Anyways you are lucky the Dundee Derby has been postponed until February. We would have gubbed you one nil.

    112. rob says:

      O/T
      Yet another example how the NHS is deteriorating under the SNP.
      An elderly friend went to the GP surgery because he had hearing difficulties. The Surgery diagnosed hardened ear wax as the cause of his deafness, but he was told the surgery no longer syringe ears and he would have to go elsewhere if he wanted the treatment He eventually got them syringed at a cost of £60.

    113. Hatuey says:

      “An elderly friend went to the GP surgery…”

      He did well getting past the door.

    114. Hatuey says:

      Not sure if anyone has provided a link to this but Salmond is always worth listening to and here he is talking to Barrhead Boy, Through A Scottish Prism, just a couple of days ago;

      https://www.barrheadboy.com/through-a-scottish-prism-with-alex-salmond/

      Good follow-up discussion too, with Phil Boswell and Ian Lawson.

      Alba is to the SNP today what the SNP was to Scottish Labour not long ago.

      Assuming we can campaign door to door and on the streets again in 2022, I look forward to finding out what ordinary people think of the stuff the SNP has been exposing school kids to, GRA and the implications for women, rising child poverty, drug deaths, and the disgusting lack of progress on indyref2.

      They de-platformed the truth of all these things (and more) but one creatively worded flyer would soon fix that — spell everything right out for people.

      The more fronts they have to firefight on the better, eh?

    115. Robert Hughes says:

      John Main @ 8.12

      Yes , I had a hearty LOL at the Mad Hatter’s ( aka Hatty The Hysterical ) condescending faux-gracious remark .

      I would have left it at that until I saw he was then slandering anyone who has been pointing out the indisputable fact that the – here’s yr fave word Hatz – * overwhelming * majority of Covid casualties were/are from particular categories of age , immune-compromised , overweight etc .

      Not once have I or any other Official Narrative sceptic said anything dismissing the lives of the elderly .

      Every life – and death – is significant to someone , at least should be . We’ll never know the true cost in lives lost because of the absurd , panic-driven , hysteria : not mention the permanent damage to civil liberties , which people like yours Hatz have been so eager to dismiss and which will continue long after this situation has passed . Assuming it is ever allowed to pass .

      That said …..it’s Hogmanay , time to let bygones be bygones , none of us are right all the time , so Happy New Year Hatuey , all the best for 2022 – and likewise to all WOS readers – and Mr Campbell , of course .

      Let’s hope the coming year sees the rotten-to-the-core House of Murrell crumble to the ground and a revivification of the Spirit of 2014 .

      Cheers . Have a great yin y’all

    116. Ebok says:

      Hatuey @ 31 December, 2021 at 3:14 am

      I’m surprised by your general approval of the discussions re ‘through a Scottish prism’, in light of our recent exchanges. Some of the views articulated went even further than my own: –
      ‘There is more that unites us than divides us’
      ‘SNP is not the enemy of ALBA’
      ‘There are many good people in SNP’

      The ‘strongest’ critical remarks directed at SNP by AS were about policy (particularly women’s rights), abandoning Indy, and the rotten leadership, something we can all agree on. However, he did stop short of making any personal attacks, and no mention of ‘burning the ships.’?

      You also endorsed something I’ve been saying for months
      ‘but one creatively worded flyer would soon fix that — spell everything right out for people’
      so perhaps there is more that unites you and I than divides us after all?

      Even your BF Andy is getting the hang of it
      ‘As others have pointed out, Alba doesn’t need to convince everyone, or “convert” most SNP supporters and voters, it only needs to become large enough to deprive the SNP or SNP/Greens of a majority and it can kill regressive and misguided policies like self ID stone dead.’
      Much easier if we infiltrate the infiltrators though and do it from within. No need to ‘convert’ all 64, 8 will suffice.

    117. Ruby says:

      ‘He eventually got them syringed at a cost of £60.’

      That is outrageous!

      Anyone had any experience with NHS Podiatry or NHS Physiotherapy?

      https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/physiotherapy/

      On the NHS website it states

      Finding a physiotherapist
      Physiotherapy is available through the NHS or privately.

      Waiting lists for NHS treatment can be long and some people choose to pay for private treatment. Most private physiotherapists accept direct self-referrals.

      Sounds as if they are promoting private health care.

      I recently paid £60 to see a physiotherapist.

      On the NHS Podiatry website it states:

      “If you are given an appointment this may not be a face to face appointment but instead an appointment by phone or a video option called “Near Me”.

      Does this video call involve teaching you DIY Podiatry? How else would a video call help with ingrown toenails for example?

      It looks as if we all need to become experts in DIY podiatry, physiotherapy & ear syringing unless we have the money to pay for private treatment.

    118. Ebok says:

      rob @ 31 December, 2021 at 12:42 am

      Thanks for sharing another disturbing instance of how a century of hard fought for working class emblems are being targeted in this country. I wrote this ditty a few weeks back after a similar comment by RoS: –

      Should we re-nationalise our NHS
      Before it’s dismantled like Remploy and Care
      Is mercy and compassion truly out of fashion
      As unburden and privatise becomes the new doctrinaire

      Should we re-nationalise our railways
      And power and telecom and oil and steel
      Or should we leave them to stock market gamblers
      And cold-hearted traders crafting their next deal

      Should we re-nationalise our postal services
      And buses and housing and gas and shipping
      Is it time to examine our moral compass
      And put an end to asset stripping

      Listen you politicians and moneymen, give us some truths
      How long will we pay for PFI, how much is enough
      And your doublespeak of PPP, saying it’s the best laid scheme
      We see the price tag, the cutbacks, the bonuses, and call your bluff

      So, begone you freeloaders who covet our treasures
      Go back to whence ye came, for when we are free
      We’ll cherish our people, our land, our waters, the fish in our seas,
      And all natures gifts to my compatriots and me

      A Happy New Year to everyone, let’s hope that by this time next year we shall all be ‘Brothers and Sisters-in-Arms’ marching confidently towards Independence.

    119. Andy Ellis says:

      @Hatuey 3.14 am

      It struck when I was reading recent exchanges on Peter Bell’s blog after his most recent jeremiad about how the movement is doomed, and calling a plague on both the SNP and Alba’s houses, that a lot of folk still have pretty unrealistic expectations?

      I seem to recall when people were agitating for the establishment of a “new” party before the last Holyrood elections that more thoughtful contributors warned that, unless and until the current leadership of the SNP was removed, we could expect little progress or movement from their current entrenched “Gold Standard” S30 sanctioned #indyref2. Given timescales, election schedules and the excuse of Covid, that meant we could kiss goodbye to any real change for the term of the current Holyrood parliament.

      Given the lost opportunity due to voters largely falling for the “SNP 1 & 2” line in May, what many of us warned about has come to pass. Establishing Alba as a viable party and ensuring that a significant section of SNP support defects permanently to the new party will take time. Even if – hopefully when ? – that happens, barring some political earthquake which sees the SNP collapse or go the way of the Irish Parliamentary Party, we’re still going to have to deal with the SNP.

      Of course many of us hope that it is an SNP which had ditched Sturgeon and her cabal of TRA extremists, but even if that happens a pro-independence majority still depends on all the pro-independence parties co-operating at least to a degree, even if they have different policy agendas. We’ve had encouraging “noises off” from more thoughtful SNP politicians like Joanna Cherry about the need for co-operation of course, but also pronouncements from serial electoral failures like Tony Giugliano that Alba are not welcome in “their movement”.

      I’d find it pretty hard to campaign shoulder to shoulder with some of those in the SNP and Scottish Greens who have spent the past few years abusing fellow independence supporters for being socially regressive, transphobic etc., irrespective of our shared ultimate goal. In the short to medium term of course, we don’t NEED to replace the SNP or see it destroyed (pleasing as that ultimate goal might be for many), we just need to consolidate a new party with enough appeal to deprive the SNP or SNP/Greens of a majority in Holyrood.

      Whether the SNP can be reformed – or is worth reforming – is a matter for its members. We just need to ensure that by the time of the next Holyrood election, Alba is in a position to ensure that the SNP have nowhere to hide for not delivering #indyref2 which they will inevitably fail to do.

      The current SNP leadership aren’t going to change horses mid stream and abandon their fixation with #indyref2. Embracing alternative routes like plebiscitary elections, or withdrawal from Westminster and issuing an ultimatum or convening a Constituent Assembly will require new thinking and a sea change in the SNP, which isn’t in our gift. What is / will be in our gift is exposing the SNP’s failure to deliver. We can’t depend on external crises or studying the Kremlinology of the SNP leadership to drop ready made solutions in to our laps.

    120. Ruby says:

      I need your help!

      I don’t know how the whole political process works. I come here to get informed. Thank you for all the help. Over the years I have learned loads. All about the D’Hondt system, what is reserved and what is devolved, about franchises, etc etc etc.

      What I know almost nothing about is councils & council elections and that is where I need your help.

      Alba will stand in the council elections in May (I will vote for them) What I’m wondering is what influence councillors will have vis a vis a vote in Holyrood for self-id?

      I will vote for Alba but I have to say there are certain posters on here who claim to be Alba members who are putting me right off. If either of them came to my door I would probably end up voting Tory.

    121. Ebok says:

      Ruby says:
      31 December, 2021 at 9:36 am
      ‘What I’m wondering is what influence councillors will have vis a vis a vote in Holyrood for self-id?’

      Not sure if you’ll get much of a response to this, so FWIW, here goes.

      None is the answer. The power resides with the big boys and girls aka MSP’s.
      I’m no expert on this (or anything else as it happens) but they are called ‘local’ elections because that is what they are. Councillors are responsible for local issues, roads, planning, garbage collection and so on.

      They are funded from HR and topped up by council tax.
      If there is a clash between councils and HR, it is usually done through COSLA (The Convention of Scottish Local Authorities) representing all 32 councils.
      There are sometimes clashes between individual authorities and HR or political parties eg Aberdeen have a Lab/Con coalition (SNP largest party) Lab bigwigs suspended lab councillors because they didn’t approve.

      At best I’d be expecting is that Alba can hold the balance in a number of council authorities, but they still won’t be able to influence SNP.

      What getting as many Alba councillors as possible WILL do is create momentum for the party and put the frighteners on Sturgeon.

      I’m happy to be corrected if any of this is wrong.

    122. John Main says:

      @Robert Hughes 8:43 am

      Thanks for your supportive post.

      Hatuey’s claim that only “dismissive” cranks call for COVID to be seen in context as just one of the many medical perils threatening us all, stems from his own, entrenched ignorance.

      A guid new year tae all.

    123. Ruby says:

      Thanks Ebok.

      That is what I thought was the case.

      There are posters on here who have been suggesting voting for Alba will stop ‘self-id’

      The only thing Alba can do is highlight the problems with ‘self-id’ in the hope the SNP & Greens see sense.

      The electorate can help a lot by firstly getting informed and then by protesting.

      This will be a difficult task because it looks as if the Greens & the SNP are not prepared to listen.

      Happy Hogmanay!

    124. Ruby says:

      Happy Birthday to Alex Salmond!

      I’m half way through listening to his interview with Barrhead Boy.

      Alex Salmond is the best!

    125. Ruby says:

      I’m not asking these question in order to decide who to vote for in the councils elections I am asking because I like to be as informed as possible.

      Do the councils make decisions regarding toilets, changing rooms etc in council run facilities?

      Do they decide if toilets etc should be unisex?

      From Google I learned

      ‘Edinburgh Leisure is a company which is owned by Edinburgh City Council’

      For those who don’t know Edinburgh Leisure runs all the swimming pools, gyms etc etc etc in Edinburgh.

      I’m wondering what influence councillors would have over Edinburgh Leisure’s decisions vis a vis unisex changing rooms, toilets, saunas, Turkish baths etc.

      The Royal Commonwealth Pool used to have a sauna & steam room but they had to close it down due to ‘misuse’.

      There was a problem and their solution was to close it down. They have re-opened without a sauna & steam room. It’s weird because even very small pools like Leith Victoria have a sauna & steam room. They are both uni-sex and there’s no problem. However that’s not to say they couldn’t end up with the same problem they had at the Commi pool.

    126. Hatuey says:

      Ebok, I’m sure some will take it as proof that I’m detached from reality, but I believe there’s much more that unites all of us who comment on here than divides us. Arguments on here are amongst family, if not friends, and when this stinking pandemic is over I expect to see much greater unity of purpose around the issue that matters most, independence.

      Since you mentioned my general position on things, I have a right to respond. If you read my comments carefully you’ll see that 99% of the focus is on data, facts, and substance rather than the character of those I am arguing against. It isn’t contrived either; frankly, I am not a “people person” and have little interest in character.

      On the various issues of the day, I’m much more compromising and pragmatic than you suggest.

      I have no problem with changing the franchise, for example, assuming it helps, although I’d probably prefer we didn’t for optical reasons.

      If the ethno-nationalist slant wins votes, I’d say do it but be careful not to slip into anything resembling nasty and divisive jingoism. Has anyone considered what impact that ethnic nationalist stuff would have on those of Irish ancestry, for example? It seems to exclude them.

      On NATO, I appreciate the majority want to join (around 75% from memory) but I think it’s important that we debate it since it has huge implications for involvement in foreign wars, Faslane, etc. I wouldn’t fall out with anyone over it, providing they demonstrate an understanding of those implications.

      I’ve been more aggressive and less willing to compromise on matters relating to the pandemic and the vaccine. In real life, outside of this place, I have had something resembling a front row seat; it’s been quite grim. Being called a “big pharma shill” for wanting to minimise deaths is possibly the only thing I’ve ever been called on here that came close to rattling me.

      As for Alba and burning ships, for me that means we stop fighting the SNP with one arm tied in the hope that some voters feel sorry for us. We need to apply maximum pressure to the SNP if we ever hope to change the SNP; and, crucially, that’s the exact same approach we need to take if Alba is every going to grow and really compete.

      A lot of people are secretly hoping thatbth

    127. Hatuey says:

      .. that the SNP changes it’s ways. By burning ships, I mean we should assume it won’t change and act accordingly. We need to fight for real against the SNP, as if Alba is all we have. It probably is.

      That’s all.

    128. Hatuey says:

      One more thing… I’m not criticising the strategy of “first vote SNP, second vote Alba”, I understand why they opted for it even if I couldn’t bring myself to do it, but that’s got to go. And that’s a good example of the sort of ship we need to burn. Until there’s significant change at the SNP, anything that frames them as a natural ally should be avoided.

    129. Hatuey says:

      Andy Ellis “ I’d find it pretty hard to campaign shoulder to shoulder with some of those in the SNP and Scottish Greens who have spent the past few years abusing fellow independence supporters…”

      That’s going to be a massive issue post-Sturgeon. It’s hard to see how the SNP doesn’t come out of all this divided and very damaged. Look at the divisions in the Labour Party caused by Blair — more than 20 years later and they’re still not over it.

      All the more reason for us to really commit to Alba and “drive her like you stole her…”

      The conspiracy against Salmond is Sturgeon’s Iraq. It isn’t going away. The other stuff I could probably live with, but not that.

    130. Ebok says:

      Hatuey @31 December, 2021 at 12:01 pm

      Aye, my tongue-in-cheek remarks about you and ‘BF Andy’ was naughty.
      If I’ve categorised anything you’ve said, then I’ve done so inadvertently.

      We all come from different backgrounds, situations, and that is what primarily shapes our views, but I’ve no problem supporting this passage from your comment: –

      ‘I believe there’s much more that unites all of us who comment on here than divides us. Arguments on here are amongst family, if not friends, and when this stinking pandemic is over I expect to see much greater unity of purpose around the issue that matters most, independence.’

    131. Andy Ellis says:

      @Hatuey

      I tend to agree WRT burning ships: Alba can’t afford to be “on message” for ever with a relentlessly positive approach to the SNP, given the loathing we see emanating from folk like Wishart, Giugliano and others.

      As for your comment that there’s much more that unites all of us who comment on here than divides us, I’m unconvinced. What are we supposed to make of folk who say, for example:

      “I will vote for Alba but I have to say there are certain posters on here who claim to be Alba members who are putting me right off. If either of them came to my door I would probably end up voting Tory.”?

      It’s the kind of thing we’d hear during #indyref1 from some random saying, “Of course, I WAS going to vote Yes, but because “X” happened, I’m now going to vote No”, where it turned out that “X” was someone on the internet disagreed with them, or used a bad word, or looked at them a bit funny, or when they were a kid they got teased for having an English accent.

      There’s little point trying to reason with such folk. They’re either just trolling for the LOLZ, or they probably aren’t allowed to vote on the grounds of mental incapacity. It’s as difficult to see a unity of purpose with people like that as it is with Wishart, Giugliano or Sturgeons Twitler Youth. Perhaps you just have a stronger stomach than I do?

    132. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Andy Ellis 5:09pm
      Burning ships it worked for Cortez. I still say you should stand as a Councillor in May. I have moved to a new community and although I am learning hard and fast I cannot deny a local the right to stand and win. Their passion for their community overrides a parachute job. And by all accounts they will stand as Independents. I am looking forward to it. Meantime we are looking at a Friend’s of the SNHS group submission to Lady Poole. It’s going to cost a lot of money. We are considering this action.
      And we are well placed with insider information on the Stats and the SNHS. We can’t get the facts and narrative out there. And it is destroying the case for Independence.

    133. Hatuey says:

      Andy, nobody is asking you to like anyone. I know I don’t…

      We are undoubtedly a bunch of ferrets in a sack with all sorts of silly ideas and differences in our heads. For now it makes sense to focus on getting out of the sack rather than the garbage in our heads.

    134. Ruby says:

      ‘There’s little point trying to reason with such folk. They’re either just trolling for the LOLZ, or they probably aren’t allowed to vote on the grounds of mental incapacity.’

      How mentally ill do you have to be to be denied a vote?

      If I thought someone posting here was mentally ill I would treat them with kindness I certainly wouldn’t be obsessing about what they wrote and calling them names.

      Due to posting the following Andy Ellis has come to the conclusion that I am so mentally incapacitated I would be denied a vote:

      “I will vote for Alba but I have to say there are certain posters on here who claim to be Alba members who are putting me right off. If either of them came to my door I would probably end up voting Tory.”?

    135. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Ruby 11:18pm
      Agreed we are all mad. How about a huge financial punt on a submission to the forthcoming Public Inquiry. How would that rate in the madness scale. We have the evidence.we

    136. Tannadice Boy says:

      @Ruby 11:18pm
      Agreed we are all mad. How about a huge financial punt on a submission to the forthcoming Public Inquiry. How would that rate in the madness scale. We have the evidence.



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