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Archive for the ‘analysis’


Attack Of The Giant Squirrels 108

Posted on January 22, 2021 by

All we can say is that the other nine points better be amazing.

Because this, readers, is ZZZ-grade donkey fodder.

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Chasing waterfalls 227

Posted on January 22, 2021 by

It’s hard to keep up with developments in Scottish politics these days, readers. We told you January 2021 was going to be a pivotal and explosive month but there’s been more going on than even we expected, and that’s despite the fact that Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon’s appearances before the Fabiani committee now both look like being pushed back to February.

So our apologies if we have to give some things rather more cursory coverage than they might ordinarily merit, or cram several stories into one post. For example, we’re just going to link you to solicitor advocate Gordon Dangerfield’s appearance yesterday on the Tommy Sheridan podcast, even though he said this non-trivial thing on it:

“There’s a very simple answer to [why Leslie Evans is still in a job]. She says it herself constantly to the inquiry – civil servants only represent ministers. They have no status other than as the servants of the government.

Who is Leslie Evans’ boss? Leslie Evans’ boss is Nicola Sturgeon. Nicola Sturgeon was behind this from the outset. Leslie Evans was carrying out Nicola Sturgeon’s instructions. And that’s why she’s still in a job. Because if she wasn’t still in a job, neither would Nicola Sturgeon be.”

The whole interview is pretty unmissable, so if you can find 24 spare minutes in your day try to give it a listen. But there’s more.

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Code Red 163

Posted on January 20, 2021 by

In addition to the Survation poll that was in the field last week and which we’ve been reporting on, there was also a Panelbase one going round at the same time.

(It’s as yet unpublished, and having been sent a few of the… interesting questions in it by some people who took the poll we’re very excited to find out who commissioned it. Our money is on either George Galloway’s furious new list party – which incidentally just had its registration refused again by the Electoral Commission – or the collection of anonymous hyper-Unionist nutters ironically calling themselves “The Majority”.)

But as the opportunity was there we slipped a couple of questions of our own in too, and the findings from one of them were pretty dramatic.

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Trigger happy 152

Posted on January 19, 2021 by

Tonight’s poll data from Survation is really quite remarkable.

We can’t wait to hear what “Pension Pete” Wishart makes of it.

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Venus and Mars 220

Posted on January 18, 2021 by

In 2014, it was women who stopped Scotland becoming independent.

But it was still a man’s fault, of course. Those of us who were around at the time, while many of the SNP’s earnest young activists of today were still squeezing their spots, will recall a multitude of media articles on how it was apparently the fairer sex’s personal antipathy to Alex Salmond that was responsible for the No camp’s victory.

And who knows, maybe that was true and maybe it wasn’t. We have no idea. But what we do know is that you can’t have it both ways.

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The dead carrot sketch 345

Posted on January 17, 2021 by

There’s literally nothing about this that isn’t toe-curlingly embarrassing:

The only challenge is knowing where to start.

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The whole truth 157

Posted on January 13, 2021 by

On pain of a grisly death, we’re not allowed to tell our splendid cartoonist Chris Cairns what to draw cartoons about. Artists are funny that way. And it’s a shame, because if we were we’d have a great idea for this weekend’s toon.

Because what’s being demanded of Alex Salmond right now is extraordinary.

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A duty of candour 281

Posted on January 12, 2021 by

During today’s session of the Holyrood inquiry into the botched conspiracy against Alex Salmond, committee MSP Jackie Baillie gave the Permanent Secretary, Leslie Evans, an especially uncomfortable time with some persistent and forensic questions about the Scottish Government’s failure to uphold its legal “duty of candour” in respect of the disclosure of relevant documents to Lord Pentland’s judicial inquiry.

(A report publicly released on Christmas Eve noted that on 2 November 2018 external counsel had stressed to government lawyers the importance of that duty of candour, and that on 6 November 2018 in the Court of Session, Lord Pentland had directed that he expected full candour and disclosure from the Government.)

A flustered Evans simply swerved most of them. And we’re going to show you why.

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Two liars 111

Posted on January 12, 2021 by

So we have our answer. According to press reports today (although we haven’t seen an actual official reply), John Swinney has refused to formally tell James Hamilton that his inquiry into possible breaches of the Ministerial Code by the First Minister over the Alex Salmond investigation ought to include the matter of whether she repeatedly lied to Parliament about what she knew and when.

Wave goodbye to justice, readers.

Because the First Minister and her deputy are now proven liars and cowards.

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Listen, the snow is falling 169

Posted on January 12, 2021 by

We know we’ve given you quite a lot to digest already this year, readers. But spare a thought for us – trying to keep on top of all the fast-moving developments in Scottish politics in the first 11 days of 2021 has been rather like trying to tunnel our way out of an avalanche while it was still happening.

We’ve had a bit of job even finding a spare moment to squeeze the cartoons in. But today’s task looked like one of the most challenging of all.

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Jethart Justice 222

Posted on January 11, 2021 by

The freelance journalist, broadcaster and former SNP staffer Mark Hirst was last week acquitted at Jedburgh Sheriff Court, after a very short trial, of a charge of threatening behaviour against the anonymous complainers who made false allegations of sexual misconduct against the former First Minister, Alex Salmond.

Many hundreds of years ago a very different type of law used to operate in Jedburgh, or Jethart as it’s known locally. “Jethart Justice” was once meted out to the Reivers – the lawless cattle stealers and highwaymen who used to range freely in that part of the Borders – which was that the local prosecutors would hang suspects first, then try the dead men afterwards. Some believe it’s where the concept of lynching originated.

Anyone who thinks those days are over doesn’t know the Scottish media.

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The logic of fear 166

Posted on January 10, 2021 by

We’d still been scratching our heads about the sudden flood this week of Unionists all demanding the Scottish Parliament election in May be postponed, the latest example being angry old uppercase-letter-phobe Euan McColm in today’s Scotland On Sunday.

Bizarrely, the piece doesn’t even attempt to acknowledge the fact that literally dozens of countries on every inhabited continent have managed to carry on with democratic elections and referendums during the COVID-19 crisis with no significant problems, just insists that it’s something Scotland definitely can’t do.

But then we had a lightbulb moment.

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