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Archive for the ‘comment’


Chris Cairns is on holiday 63

Posted on January 19, 2019 by

Yes, still. Yes, again. But don’t worry, we still have a cartoon joke for you.

Ladies and gentlemen, the Scottish Labour Party.

The Prisoners 240

Posted on January 18, 2019 by

You wouldn’t know it to watch the black-hole-scale mess our politicians are making of it, but the thing about Brexit is that it ISN’T an insoluble problem. That two of the supposed “partners” in the United Kingdom are being forced out of the EU against the will of their people is a political choice, not a necessity.

There are numerous perfectly viable ways to practically address the fact that Scotland and Northern Ireland voted Remain while Wales and England voted Leave, none of which are especially outlandish.

Last July this site put forward an idea that respects the referendum result in all four constituent nations and would have wide public support. Yesterday the Guardian published a variant on the concept with lots of strong technical detail. And earlier this week we suggested another approach which could break the current deadlock.

But the stupendously incompetent Tory executive running the government, and the equally useless notional Labour “opposition”, have both handcuffed themselves across the emergency exits, preventing any hope of escape from disaster as the country burns down around everyone’s ears.

We no longer have a union. We have a hostage situation.

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Out of the quagmire 885

Posted on January 14, 2019 by

UK politics is stuck fast in the mud, going nowhere, and the casualties are mounting. Whether on Brexit, independence or anything else, we’ve all become so dug-in to our positions that some people – naming no names – have forgotten where the battle lines are or what their political war was even about in the first place.

For 30 months now, the Yes movement has been trying to answer the question of how to get a second indyref. The SNP has a triple-locked democratic mandate based on Scotland being dragged out of the EU against the will of its people, but as strong a moral argument as that is it unfortunately runs straight into a brick wall of reality: the constitution is reserved to Westminster.

Equally we’re consumed by the ongoing Brexit trainwreck, which has no apparent escape route from a poisonous stalemate paralysing the UK’s politicians and leaving nobody in control as the country heads for some very hard buffers.

As the self-imposed Brexit deadline looms, Theresa May is running out of options. Her deal is a dead duck. When it inevitably fails, there are two possible scenarios: a second EU referendum of some sort (nobody can agree what the options would be), or a general election.

Neither the Tories nor Labour want another referendum because both parties want Brexit to happen, so another election is the more likely. But all the polls suggest it would deliver much the same hung parliament as we have now, solving nothing.

Last week, SNP MP Joanna Cherry QC gave a speech to a diverse pro-Europe group that includes former Green leader Caroline Lucas, pro-indy commentator Lesley Riddoch and Tory MP Dominic Grieve. And as she waxed lyrical, with a twinkle in her eye Cherry slipped in reference to a hitherto-undiscussed plan that offers an escape route for everyone.

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The Prime Minister is a lying idiot 52

Posted on January 14, 2019 by

The extremely sharp and perceptive New Statesman writer Stephen Bush buries some of his political insight in a daily email newsletter (because, we assume, his fax machine doesn’t work, you can’t send telegrams any more and London flats don’t have enough room to keep a lot of messenger pigeons or let you send smoke signals).

And it’s a lot easier just to quote you a chunk of today’s than it is to rewrite the same observations into a new article ourselves.

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Meanwhile in the Scottish media 197

Posted on January 13, 2019 by

Nicola Sturgeon attended a meeting of the SNP NEC yesterday.

Or maybe she didn’t.

One of these people/publications, inescapably, is flat-out lying to their readers about the event in question. Given the Scottish media’s ingrained habit of lying about pretty much everything almost all of the time, we honestly wouldn’t like to hazard a guess as to which one of them it was.

A comment on recent events 59

Posted on January 13, 2019 by

The mess we’ve made 362

Posted on January 09, 2019 by

Last night the UK government lost a vote which, while largely symbolic, was designed to hamper its ability to generate its finances in the event of a no-deal Brexit (and therefore to try to incentivise it to avoid a no-deal).

A handful of Tory MPs voted for the motion, combining with the opposition to defeat the government by 308 to 296. No Scottish Tory MPs rebelled, however – despite having pledged when they were elected that they would vote to defend Scotland’s interests, something pretty much everyone agrees a no-deal Brexit would be a catastrophe for.

A reader contacted one of them, Douglas Ross, and forwarded their exchange to us, because it raises enormous questions about the entire UK political system.

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Brass neck gleaming 261

Posted on January 08, 2019 by

Wow. That’s Monica Lennon sat directly behind him, by the way.

That must have taken some amount of polishing.

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Facing the wrong way 537

Posted on January 07, 2019 by

Scottish Labour mounted another of their infamous stunt “protests” today, as always dutifully assisted and advertised by the Scottish media.

STV reported it as an event organised by a small rail union – not the RMT or ASLEF, but the little-known Transport Salaried Staff Association – which would feature “other campaigners”, but in fact it was a Scottish Labour shindig from top to bottom, with no union branding visible anywhere and Scottish Labour on all the placards.

Well, we say “all”.

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Return of the boat people 546

Posted on January 05, 2019 by

Taking back control 155

Posted on January 04, 2019 by

We’ve got no words for this, so we’ll let it stand by itself.

Because 55% voted No. Welcome to Brexit.

The one we’ve waited for 481

Posted on January 01, 2019 by

The last two years, particularly 2018, have been a pretty miserable time in the annals of Scottish independence. Not because support has fallen – it hasn’t budged an inch, however much Unionists might try to desperately convince themselves otherwise – but because there hasn’t, in essence, been anything we could usefully do.

Faced with a brick wall of “now is not the time” intransigence from a UK government elected by England and determined to frustrate the democratic will of the Scottish Parliament, we could talk all we wanted but had no means to determine our own fate, locked in the boot of a car speeding towards a cliff edge with a lunatic at the wheel.

That age – and it’s felt like an age – is very nearly at an end.

It’s time to get ready.

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