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My civic duty 168

Posted on May 23, 2019 by

I’ve just been out to vote in the European elections, because as a rule I think people should vote in stuff. And while it was a very difficult choice, in the end I voted for the only sane option. (Click pic to view.)

I truly believe it’s the best choice for Britain.

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89% of Scots support second indyref 277

Posted on May 20, 2019 by

Almost nine in ten Scottish voters now back a second referendum on independence. This rather startling news was brought to us at the weekend by an unlikely source, in the form of walking brain vacuum Annie Wells MSP.

Wells was absolutely unequivocal that NO other vote this Thursday – not Labour, not Lib Dem, not Brexit Party – would constitute opposition to a second indyref.

(She emphasised the point by RTing a tweet from the Scottish Tories’ boorish and obnoxious head of media Adam Morris which described both Nigel Farage and Vince Cable as “weak on Scotland’s place in the UK”.)

So how are those numbers looking?

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The British Job 204

Posted on May 18, 2019 by

The Vicar Of Braying 120

Posted on May 17, 2019 by

The Herald has a story this morning about the Secretary of State for Scotland, a man who readers may recall promising that Scotland would benefit financially from the UK government’s £1.5bn bung to the DUP (which then didn’t happen), and threatening to resign over Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement (which he didn’t do, then denied ever saying), and promising to do everything he could to oppose a no-deal Brexit but then abstaining on a vote to rule it out (and refusing to resign despite being a government minister who had refused a government whip).

Older readers may also remember Mundell as someone who voted against the repeal of the homophobic “Section 28” legislation in the Scottish Parliament despite being a closeted gay man at the time, and who voted to effectively ban IVF treatment for gay couples but now works for a lesbian mother.

But demonising Boris Johnson? Who would ever do such a monstrous thing?

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One week in the war on women 84

Posted on May 17, 2019 by

6th May

On April 26th, the International Lesbian Day of Visibility, a very obviously physically male Twitter user sent tweets to accompany photos of himself in which he claimed to be a lesbian (he also commented “down with cis”).

Juliet Smollett, a feminist gay rights campaigner (and mother to a lesbian daughter) replied to him “you’re not a lesbian”. For this she was said to be committing “hateful conduct” and her account was permanently banned.

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Spilt black milk 393

Posted on May 07, 2019 by

Last week, Norway rubbed our faces in it again.

In just THREE MONTHS, the investment return alone from its national oil fund was around £64 billion – more money than the total annual budget of Scotland, including both Scottish Government spending and money spent by the UK “on our behalf”.

(If you click that link, you can see the value of the fund increase and – less frequently – decrease live in hypnotic real time. We watched it for a few minutes, during which time it added over 220m Krone, or around £20 million.)

That’s like making more from three months’ interest on your bank account than your yearly wage. It’s what Scotland could – would – have had if we’d been independent since the 1970s, because we’ve produced slightly more oil from the North Sea in that time than Norway has. We just gave all ours away.

But we know that that chance has been blown now, and rather than enjoy bountiful interest windfalls we make crippling interest payments on the UK’s debt, to the tune of around £3.5bn a year, while being told we’re scrounging subsidy junkies who should be grateful for having been relieved of the troublesome burden of our wealth.

None of this is any sort of new information, of course, but it doesn’t hurt to remind ourselves regularly of what being in the UK has cost us over the decades – and what it could cost us again in terms of the remaining oil and the potentially even greater resource of renewable energy that our naturally-blessed country sits amid – if we don’t have the courage to take responsibility for ourselves.

The slow learners 189

Posted on May 03, 2019 by

Poor old Gary Smith and the rest of the super-unionist GMB. We wonder how many times the UK government has to kick them up the arse before they stop bending over.

We’re pretty sure we’ll need to take our shoes and socks off to count, though.

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The restoration of faith 795

Posted on April 29, 2019 by

Context phobia 418

Posted on April 22, 2019 by

Alert readers will know by now that there’s nothing the Scottish media – and the Scottish Daily Mail in particular – likes more than printing scary-sounding figures with no context whatsoever by which people could judge how big or small they really are.

Nothing’s changed today (other than a rather sneaky inset shot of an old story about a different statistic which misleadingly makes today’s one look like a big increase), so rather than bang on we’ll just fill in the blanks: ScotRail runs around 760,000 trains a year, so this year’s cancellation figures amount to about 3.5% of all trains.

Which is to say, around one time in every 30 that you go to get a train it’ll have been cancelled and you’ll have to wait for the next one, which on the average commuter line will probably mean 15-20 minutes.

Which is still a pain in the hole, of course, but if it’s such a high number ask yourself why the Mail is so pathologically averse to simply telling you what percentage it is.

We’ll see you again with these figures in a few weeks, folks.

The Frightening Rabbit 114

Posted on April 20, 2019 by

A tissue of fair comments 256

Posted on April 19, 2019 by

Most of the on-the-spot media reporting of the judgement in our court case against Kezia Dugdale on Wednesday was pretty fair and straightforward news coverage. The majority of pieces accurately and prominently mentioned the fact that the sheriff had found that I wasn’t a homophobe and that Dugdale’s article in the Daily Record which had claimed that I was WAS both untrue and defamatory.

(Some readers objected to headlines claiming that Dugdale had been “victorious”, but the strict legal fact is that she had.)

But it didn’t take long for the press to recover its composure and revert to type.

A comment piece in today’s Herald is probably the peak so far.

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The long drop 171

Posted on April 16, 2019 by

Almost exactly two years ago, this website suggested that it might not be the smartest idea for Labour to go along with Theresa May’s call for a snap election. (Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, it couldn’t have happened without Labour’s support.)

And it occurred to us today that if they hadn’t, the current government would only have a maximum of one year left to run.

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