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Wings Over Scotland

Archive for the ‘analysis’

The Casting Vote 150

Posted on March 20, 2023 by

There can surely be no credible disputing that the SNP leadership election – and therefore that of Scotland’s next First Minister – is, to put it very mildly, under a cloud.

The list of let’s call them “irregularities” is almost endless. The artificial truncation of the contest, against the SNP constitution; the packing of the hustings with Humza Yousaf supporters; candidates being denied any knowledge about the size of the membership until voting was under way, and then the party’s press chief and CEO both resigning over lying about it; the apparent existence of 6000 more ballot papers than the party has members; one of the Scottish Government’s most senior officers being improperly seconded to the Yousaf campaign (and then also resigning as a result); numerous documented examples of non-members being given votes while fully-paid-up members weren’t; we could, frankly, go on and on.

As things stand, whoever wins will be forever tainted by the process – easy meat for the Unionist opposition in the Holyrood chamber and the media and a potential legal challenge could cause untold further damage to the party.

With six days still left for voting, the case for a reballot – an administratively fairly trivial task in an election being conducted almost entirely online – is now unanswerable, and needn’t even involve a delay.

Only one person stands in the way.

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Astronomical numbers of boots 131

Posted on March 19, 2023 by

The SNP having a fondness for lying about their membership wouldn’t have come as quite such a shock to the Scottish press if they paid a little more attention to this website. Because we were pointing it out two and a half years ago.

It was in October 2020 that we told you how the SNP’s 2019 accounts revealed the party’s true membership figures weren’t the claimed 126,000 but more like 87,000.

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The Patsies 123

Posted on March 18, 2023 by

The mainstream Scottish political media might not have many professional standards, but there’s one it’s still pretty diligent about upholding.

And that’s that if a political party’s press office starts really taking liberties and making them look like fools, all bets (and gloves) are off.

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The decline and fall 233

Posted on March 17, 2023 by

…of the SNP has been in the post for quite some time.

Because no party can prosper for long when it’s stuffed full of complete dum-dums.

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The truth will come out 229

Posted on March 16, 2023 by

How it started, just one month ago:

And how it’s going:

But it’s quite a lot worse than it looks.

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Rogue Trooper 129

Posted on March 16, 2023 by

Hats off to the SNP. Every time we think that the party’s leadership election can’t get any more absurdly farcical, they pull something extra-mad out of the bag.

After this happened yesterday, it suddenly become “known” across the Scottish media that the SNP NEC was going to hold an extraordinary meeting in order to authorise the release of the membership figures after all three candidates demanded them.

Some of the country’s most senior hacks, including BBC Scotland’s Political Editor and the editor of the Daily Record, sombrely informed their readers of the development.

Only trouble was, nobody had told the SNP NEC.

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The Gauntlet 149

Posted on March 15, 2023 by

Well, this has set the cat amongst the pigeons.

Because the SNP leadership election is now a full-blown four-alarm skip fire.

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The Human Torpedo 83

Posted on March 15, 2023 by

Two obvious things arise from this clip from last night’s BBC leadership debate.

Don’t worry, this won’t take long.

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Crossing swords 105

Posted on March 13, 2023 by

Tonight’s debate on Sky News between the three SNP leadership candidates was yet another inconclusive low-scoring draw, with each contender taking a few hits (almost all from host Beth Rigby) and also landing the odd blow on each other.

The most notable of the latter was probably when Ash Regan gave Humza Yousaf a rather uncomfortable time over his claiming credit for the Queensferry Crossing when he was Transport Secretary.

As well as frantically trying to deflect by pretending Regan had attacked the SNP’s record on the project in general, Yousaf insisted that he’d played a major role in the bridge’s delivery. So let’s just check the timeline.

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Yoons For Yousaf, Fascists For Forbes 135

Posted on March 13, 2023 by

The Unionist media in Scotland (ie all of the media in Scotland) usually keeps up a pretty united front when it comes to the subjects of independence or the SNP. So it’s been fascinating in these last couple of weeks to see a genuine schism develop between them on the subject of the party’s leadership election.

(For the avoidance of doubt, we do not include Holyrood Magazine, whose splendid front cover image that is, in “the Unionist media”.)

Right back at the start of the contest we highlighted The Times’ full-on love-in for Kate Forbes, but most of the Scottish press has now made their preferences clear. And you’ll never guess who they really, really DON’T want to be the next First Minister.

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All That Ever Mattered 159

Posted on March 12, 2023 by

In fairness, you can’t really accuse them of hiding it any more.

The faint hearts and pension-seekers of the SNP think that their time has come – the moment when the party’s pursuit of independence can be quietly downgraded to a vague long-term aspiration that will ensure their seats on the gravy train for decades.

Starting at noon tomorrow is your very last chance to stop them.

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Letters from the country 57

Posted on March 11, 2023 by

While idly browsing Twitter this morning, we made a startling discovery triggered by the SNP leadership election, and it was this: nobody in Scotland really knows what the nation’s law on abortion is.

It was prompted by these two tweets, both of which appear to be true:

The thing they agree on is that Humza Yousaf has just declared that he wants to change the law around abortion so that women can abort babies in Scotland solely on the grounds that they don’t like which sex they are. And that seems like something that should probably be bigger news.

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