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Cleaning the stables

Posted on March 19, 2023 by

So we were a couple of days early on this one.

In fairness to the Scottish press, it’s had a lot of stuff to fit in recently.

But the story finally did appear in today’s Sunday Mail. It’s a bit grim.

But because there are still a handful of elected SNP representatives who AREN’T creepy corrupt sleazebags, the paper noted that eight of the party’s councillors have written to National Secretary Lorna Finn demanding that group leader Tracy Carragher be suspended pending an inquiry into her attempts to cover Linden’s serial abuse up, allegedly on the orders of now-departed CEO Peter Murrell.

But we thought you might like to see the whole letter, as the Mail didn’t print it.


Lorna Finn, National Secretary
Kelly Parry, Local Government Convenor
Ian McCann, Compliance Manager
Anne Thomas, Assistant Business Manager
Heather Anderson ANC Convenor

& North Lanarkshire SNP Group


Dear Ms Finn, Mr McCann, Ms Parry, Ms Thomas, Ms Anderson & Group Members.

In support and solidarity with our anonymous colleague.

As the below-mentioned group of North Lanarkshire SNP Councillors, we are writing today to formally complain about the serious and continual failings implemented by the North Lanarkshire SNP Leadership Team and their frequent abuse of power bringing both the NLC SNP Group & Party name into disrepute.

We demand the immediate suspension of Cllrs T Carragher, R Sullivan and A Masterton to allow for a formal investigation to take place via rule 48, we further note the failure to adhere to group standing orders rules 4.e, 9, 10, Appendix 2 point 2 (Safeguarding) and the complete dereliction of duty and inability to abide by any aspect of the party’s policy on sexual harassment.

Having all seen the Sunday Mail newspaper article dated 12.03.23 (Front Cover, Page 4 and 5), it was reported that a Group Member had met the Leader Cllr T Carragher in August 2022 to lodge a formal complaint of sexual harassment involving Cllr J Linden. The victim highlights that Cllr Carragher was dismissive of the allegation and turned the member away to report the matter to HQ.

In February 2023 after being ignored, refused any credibility, and being freely exposed to the perpetrator in a variety of meeting settings, a formal complaint was raised to the National Secretary, Compliance Manager whilst CC’ing both Cllrs Sullivan and Masterton.

The member shared these communications anonymously via email with the group on 15.03.23 in an attempt to highlight the contempt displayed by the Leader, HQ, the Business Manager, and Depute Leader.

To add further insult to injury Cllrs Carragher and Sullivan who would have been aware of the victim’s identity (and knowing whether he was in the room) denied any knowledge of the complaint at the Group Meeting held on 13.03.23.

In these communications shared by the victim, HQ makes no attempt to acknowledge the complaint, Cllr Sullivan does respond but fails in his duty of care (rule 10) by not following or progressing the subject with either the victim or HQ.

The Business manager made no attempt to safeguard the member immediately (Appendix 2 point 2) nor ensure any adequate or professional support. Cllr Masterton in his role of Depute Leader fails the victim further by not ensuring the complaint was being progressed.

Cllr Carragher & others have failed to protect and support a colleague making a serious allegation against another member and this adds to a long list of vexed decisions this Leadership Team has made since taking office in 2022.

1.       Open discrimination against a registered Disabled Member.

2.       Made false & malicious allegations against a member.

3.       Failed to progress a Sexual Harassment case.

4.       Abuse of power.

5.       Deliberately misled the Group on multiple occasions.

Since taking up the role of Leader, Cllr Carragher and Cllr Sullivan as Group Business Manager, have been fixated on sowing division within the group, this is evidenced in their continual misleading of the group in matters pertaining to Cllr J Linden and the recent fabricated and malicious complaints presented against a colleague.

We are appalled that ‘safeguarding’ was used as the means to qualify the suspension of a sitting Councillor while in a serious disclosure of sexual harassment, ‘safeguarding’ was not considered as the appropriate action to ensure the protection and support of a victim.

The Leadership Team has deliberately failed every member of the Group who are now placed in the position of collective accountability, guilty by association and answerable to their respective electorate over the Leadership’s inactions.

As Cllr Linden has now resigned from the Council Group and from the party, no formal action can or will be taken against him, however, this should not preclude a formal investigation into the substantive complaint made by the victim. In order to ensure group & public reassurance, we request under standing order 48, that Cllr Thomas, as Assistant Business Manager or another independently appointed individual, investigate the points cited in this communication and present the findings back to the group for consideration.

As the signed complainants and as concerned group members, we are bringing this to your attention for immediate action and we anticipate this will be treated with the seriousness & urgency that is required.

We await your prompt response,


Cllr Beth Baudo
Cllr Gerry Brennan
Cllr David Crichton
Cllr Paul Di Mascio
Cllr Greg Lennon
Cllr Barry McCluskey
Cllr Cameron McManus

We suppose we can’t entirely blame Cllr Carragher for being scared of taking any action against Linden. He might have sat on her.

The Mail also ran a story about Humza Yousaf being cleared of breaking the Ministerial Code with regard to the SNP leadership election. It so happens we have the full text of that complaint too, along with the full response from the Permanent Secretary (the job recently vacated by the unlamented Leslie Evans).

Sent: 15 March 2023 09:00
To: Permanent Secretary <>
Subject: Complaint Re Humza Yousaf & Civil Servants/Special Advisors

Request for investigation into breaches of the Ministerial Code, Special Advisors Code and the Civil Service Code

Dear Permanent Secretary

I write to complain and call for an investigation into the apparent breach of the ministerial code and breach of impartiality rules by civil servants and/or special advisors.

This complaint refers to the attached clip which is Mr Yousaf’s response to Ash Regan MSP on a televised BBC election debate last night as part of the SNP leadership contest.

Under cross examination from Ms Regan in regards to voting during the passing of the Gender Recognition Reforms in December 2022, Mr Yousaf responded:

“Of course, eh, a, Ash was, of course my Junior Minister eh, when I was Justice Secretary and I’ve looked through the records and I can’t find any record of you (Ash Regan) ever raising this issue with me when, when I was Justice Secretary.“

This complaint refers to the specific claim by Mr Yousaf that he has “looked through the records… when I was Justice Secretary.”

Mr Yousaf is no longer Justice Secretary. Therefore evidently Mr Yousaf should not have access to departmental papers, minutes of meetings, exchanges between him and Ministers responsible to him or any other records from his time as Justice Secretary. Further, Mr Yousaf should not have retained records that are pertinent to the role of Justice Secretary when he ceased to be the Justice Secretary.

Mr Yousaf has used these Government records as a means to advance his candidacy in the SNP leadership contest.

It can therefore only be possible that either:

(a) that Mr Yousaf retained records that he was privileged to during his tenure as Justice Secretary which he then used for party political purposes/or;

(b) Scottish Government Special Advisors and/or Scottish Government Civil Servants have accessed records from Mr Yousaf’s period as Justice Secretary in order to use these records via the use of Government resources to assist Mr Yousaf’s Party Political leadership campaign.

Regardless of which of the above is correct, Mr Yousaf has breached the Ministerial code on numerous occasions.

Mr Yousaf is clear and unambiguous in his claim that he has “looked through the records” and that he “can’t find any record of…”

As you are aware, enforcing the Ministerial Code and management of Special Advisors is the responsibility of the First Minister, however due to the possibility of breaches committed by Civil Servants that are accountable to you, I am requesting that you open an investigation into the following Breaches of the Ministerial Code, the Code of Conduct for Special Advisors and the Civil Service Code.

Furthermore, as the current First Minister will shortly resign from office, added to members of her Government openly supporting Mr Yousaf in his bid in the SNP leadership contest, it is apparent to any reasonable person that the First Minister has a conflict of interest in carrying out her enforcement responsibilities in this instance.

Below I have listed 11 sections of the Ministerial Code that Mr Yousaf has breached:

1.3(i) Ministers must not use public resources for party political purposes;

(j) Ministers must uphold the political impartiality of the Civil Service and not ask civil servants to act in any way which would conflict with the Civil Service Code as set out in the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act 2010.

2.4 The internal processes through which a Government decision has been made should not normally be disclosed.

2.5 In accordance with the principle of collective responsibility, it is important that Ministers and their staff preserve the privacy of Government business and protect the security of Government documents, subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (see also paragraphs 2.26 and 2.27).

2.26 Ministers have a personal responsibility to safeguard the integrity and confidentiality of Government business. Failure to maintain good security can cause damage to the interests and reputation of the Government and may prejudice the effective conduct of official business.

2.28 Ministers relinquishing office should hand back to their Private Office any Cabinet documents and/or other official papers in their possession.

Access by Former Ministers to Official Papers

2.29 By convention, and at the Government’s discretion, former Ministers are allowed reasonable access to official papers which they saw when they were in office. Such access is provided outwith the provisions of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 and is limited to that Minister personally. Access is subject to compliance with the ‘Radcliffe Rules’ (see paragraph 10.14). The papers made available for inspection cannot be copied or taken away. The use made of those papers is limited by the need to ensure that the conventions about confidentiality of exchanges between Ministers, and civil servants’ advice to Ministers, are not breached. Approaches in these cases should be made in the first instance to the Permanent Secretary.

6.1 Ministers must uphold the political impartiality of the Civil Service, and not ask civil servants to act in any way which would conflict with the Civil Service Code

6.2 Ministers have a duty to:

(b) Uphold the political impartiality of the Civil Service, and not to ask civil servants to act in any way which would conflict with the Civil Service Code;

6.3 Ministers should not ask civil servants to engage in activities likely to call into question their political impartiality or to give rise to the criticism that official resources are being used for party political purposes.

7.3 Official facilities and resources may not be used for the dissemination of material which is essentially party political.

The Code of Conduct for Special Advisors has been breached in the following regard if Mr Yousaf was passed the records that he has stated he has access to from Special Advisors

5. But special advisers must not:

ask civil servants to do anything which is inconsistent with their obligations under the Civil Service Code or behave in a way which would be inconsistent with standards set by the Scottish Government;

10. Special advisers should act in a way which upholds the political impartiality of other civil servants. They should not use official resources for party political activity.

11. Special advisers should not disclose official information which has been communicated in confidence in government or received in confidence from others. The preparation or dissemination of inappropriate material or personal attacks has no part to play in the job of being a special adviser as it has no part to play in the conduct of public life. Any special adviser found to be disseminating inappropriate material will be subject to a disciplinary process that may include dismissal.

The Civil Service Code has been breached in the following regard if Mr Yousaf was passed the records that he has stated he has access to via the support of Civil Servants

15. You must not:

•act in a way that is determined by party political considerations, or use official resources for party political purposes;

In summary, it is clear that Government resources and Government Records have been used and/or accessed for party political purposes. This serious matter risks bringing the Government into disrepute and it is a clear risk to public confidence in regards to the political impartiality of the Civil Service.

I believe you have no option in these circumstances other than to launch an investigation into the numerous breaches of the ministerial and special advisor codes, and the potential breach of the Civil Service Code.

I look forward to your timely response.”

The response was certainly timely. But then there wasn’t much of it.

In the light of the Hate Crime Bill forced through by Humza Yousaf during his term as Justice Secretary, it’s reassuring to know that “turns of phrase” are apparently exempt from laws.

But we publish these documents mainly to remember that there are still people in the SNP who want the party cleaned up and restored to what it once was, before the grotesque events of the last few years. Members will have to decide for themselves which of the current leadership candidates is most likely to achieve such an outcome.

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  1. 20 03 23 19:35

    Can the SNP keep a lid on crisis? |

0 to “Cleaning the stables”

  1. Dorothy Devine

    Most excellent!

  2. Andrew scott

    What a sodding mess

  3. Geoff Bush

    This is almost Johnsonian in the level of entitlement involved – “the law that I championed does not apply to me of course !” – or maybe shades of Liar Carmichael who established that lies are OK during election campaigns. FFS

  4. Carol Neill

    Wish I’d shares in a popcorn factory
    Worth every penny stu
    I don’t post much but I do read
    Tremendous thanks to you and your team

  5. Mark Harper

    Back to firing on all cylinders, the Yes campaign is back when Wings has the bit between the teeth. And on a Sunday too! Usually only get a cartoon!
    Brilliant stuff Stu, intaethum!

  6. Mark Boyle

    Goddamnit Stu, I swear to god if I eat any more popcorn this weekend thanks to you …

  7. Phil MacVee

    Thanks for exposing this continuing nonsense. I just feel so tired and betrayed on every level.

  8. GlesgaJim

    It’s soul destroying stuff. I loathe Sturgeon, Murrell and the woke cabal of creeps for the damage they’ve done. The party itself is finished, for me at least. Mental connections have been made between the symbols of the SNP, the yellow logo, and rotten, putrid corruption. What was done to Craig Murray, the attempt to jail Salmond, the treatment of Joanna Cherry, drag queens in Scottish primary schools, the attempts to indoctrinate our children to the woke cult via primary education, the attacks on Scottish women, on freedom of speech and of rational reality.
    I detest them for what they’ve done. It took Sturgeon and the children of the corn less than 10 years to turn it all into a bin fire. That’s all I feel when I see the yellow of the SNP now.

  9. Big Jock

    So Humza was either lying about checking the records, or checking the records when he shouldn’t have. Whichever way you cut it. He has either broken the law, or is a serial liar. Both name him unfit to be FM.

  10. Doug

    Continuity? Yousaf is certainly the contemptible candidate.

  11. MrRocknRoll

    Think it was Phil Boswell who said today on today’s Scottish Prism that SNP needed colonic irrigation. It certainly would be a good start!

  12. Big Jock

    It’s akin to clearing out corruption in the New York police department in the 80s. It’s so rife, it has become institutionalised. I think at least 40% are involved , to a greater or lesser extent.

  13. Geri

    There’ll be a lot more to come.

    The SNP is so stupid. It knows it needs to be extra super squeaky clean in the face of the Colonisers who’ll throw shit at it, infiltrate it, make it fail to render it unelectable & knock any notions of leaving on the nut.

    Sturgeon was obviously *got at* in 2016 to kill off indy & Brexshit nonsense so built thier own wee empire for themselves instead.

    I don’t think the SNP can be saved. The next FM has a monumental task because it’s fking dire from top to bottom.

  14. PacMan

    Let me get this straight.

    When this Hate Crime Bill does ever get implemented by Police Scotland, whoever gets charged under it just needs to say the comments are turns of phrases used in the heat of an argument and should be taken in that context.

    If so, it pretty much makes the bill unworkable. Given the amount of time Police Scotland have been taking to implement it, I’ve got the feeling they are thinking the same way as I am.

  15. Kcor

    I trust the complainant will not be so easily fobbed off and continue with the complaint until finally there will be no choice but have to be fobbed off.

    That is how it works in Sturgeon’s rotten to the core State of Scotland.

    As the Rev. Stuart Campbell found out a few years ago when trying to find out who was accountable for what and found out that no one was accountable for anything.

    When all the corrupt criminals are jailed the bastard who accepted Sturgeon’s numerous lies and evasions and cleared her in the parliamentary enquiry must be the first one to be jailed.

  16. Doug

    The SNP should split with those who truly want independence coming to an agreement with Alba and working more closely with pro indy organizations. Leave the Sturgeonistas to wallow in devolution.

  17. President Xiden

    It’s the same entitlement mind set that Hilary Clinton had. Nuff said.

  18. Geoff Anderson

    In summary nobody was leading the Party, setting standards or protecting staff.
    The rules didn’t apply to the favoured. Abuse by Party members of elected personnel was tolerated.
    In some cases such as Joanna Cherry and Joan MacAlpine it was actively encouraged.
    Sturgeon, Murrell, McCann etc buried complaints, ignored calls and therefore enabled abuse, threats and aggressive behaviour throughout the organisation.
    Personnel observed the increasing power of this “connected” elite group. The boyfriends, The stars of the TransCult, the affiliates on the NEC, MP’s multiple cousins. Etc

    A MPs boyfriend fails vetting…a quick call to the clique and the shortlist incudes his name.The complaints of assessors ignored.

    This eight years of abuse ( for some, terror) is to be ignored now to protect the Indy cause. Turn a blind eye for Indy.

    No, let everything come out.

  19. Louise Hogg

    So with 3 options:
    Humza bluffing, ie lying
    SPADS breaking rules
    Civil Servants breaking rules,
    Ash has forced the Permanent Secretary to deny in writing both of the last 2. Leaving the first?

    If an investigation had been forced, then Humza might be in trouble. As it is, he’s been shown to most likely be a very casual liar.

    Ash showing how a Permanent Secretary can be handled more effectively rather than naively colluded with, by an independence politician. Joanna Cherry her campaign manager, did you say?

  20. James Barr Gardner

    Business as usual:

    The acceptance and perpetuation of corruption in organization

    Vikas Anand, Blake E. Ashforth, and Mahendra Joshi

    Executive Summary

    Many of the recent corruption scandals at formerly venerated organizations such as Enron, WorldCom, and Parmalat have some noteworthy features in common. In most instances, the fraudulent acts involved knowing cooperation among numerous employees who were upstanding community members, givers to charity, and caring parents-far removed from the prototypical image of a criminal.

    The involvement of such individuals in corrupt acts, and the persistence of the acts over time, is both disturbing and puzzling.

    We argue that the above phenomenon can be explained in part by the rationalization tactics used by individuals committing unethical or fraudulent acts. Rationalizations are mental strategies that allow employees (and others around them) to view their corrupt acts as justified.

    Employees may collectively use rationalizations to neutralize any regrets or negative feelings that emanate from their participation in unethical acts. Further, rationalizations are often accompanied by socialization tactics through which newcomers entering corrupt units are induced to accept and practice the ongoing unethical acts and their associated rationalizations.

    We describe the different forms of rationalization and
    socialization tactics and the ways in which firms can prevent or reverse their occurrence among employees. The onset of these two tactics can establish enduring corruption in
    organizations and become institutionalized in seemingly innocuous processes.

  21. Kcor

    PacMan says:
    19 March, 2023 at 9:51 pm

    “When this Hate Crime Bill does ever get implemented by Police Scotland, whoever gets charged under it just needs to say the comments are turns of phrases used in the heat of an argument and should be taken in that context.”

    Doesn’t work like that as Craig Murray found out.

    He was harassed and jailed while those who had revealed much more were left untouched.

    There is one law for the masters and another law for the plebs.

    IMHO, all the corrupt criminals would have been brought to justice a long time ago if Craig Murray had the sense to reveal all the names before there was an injunction.

    The Rev. Stuart Campbell (re Kezia Dugdale), Craig Murray and Alex Salmond must not rest until all the corrupt criminals responsible for the injustice they got end up with lengthy sentences in jail.

    As for the biggest tractor in Scottish history, her remaining career has to be spent behind bars.

  22. Red

    Isn’t it astonishing that we’ve had an allegedly Scottish nationalist party in charge for the past 12 years, and their biggest legislative “achievement” was to take away the rights of Scottish people to freely speak their minds?

    With friends like this, I’m glad we don’t have any enemies.

  23. Daisy Walker

    In my previous career there were some golden rules.

    1/ Don’t get caught. Ever.

    2/ Before you consider breaking the rules, you have to know the rules and have practised them, inside out. Only by doing that, can you ever hope to 1/ Don’t get caught, ever.

    3/ If you do get caught, refer to 2/ when offering up any type of explanation.

    We live in times when these youngsters don’t even know what a corner is, and are so used to doing what they want, in total contempt of the rules, that they don’t even have the werewithall to understand what a cut corner is, never mind provide a professional explanation of same.

    And yes, I am being generous to them. The above description of behaviour is just out and out corruption.

  24. Alan McHarg

    Either way he (Yousaf) has just proven himself a liar on TV to a wide audience.

  25. Alan Mackintosh

    Ottomanboi, re your post about Imran Khan , the prosecutor on the ICC which issued the arrest warrant for Vladimir Putin. Turns out his brother, Tory Mp for Wakefield, was released early from his 18 month sentence for sexual assault of Teenage boy. Could one thing be linked to the other… who knows. Certainly no sign of any arrest warrants being issued for Blair, Bush, Obama, Clinton who are responsible for invasion and death of civilians in the millions.

    On another topic, the puzzling disconnect between Sturgeons response to upset TRA’s and the tens of thousands of real members who walked. I wonder if there is some large financial elephant in the room from big pharma to push this through. I recall the Libdems were punted hundreds of thousands, mebbe SNP got some too, seeing as we were being used as a testbed. There seems to be money floating around in the SNP to keep membership funds looking healthy regardless of the actual subs. There must be money off the books which is being introduced somewhere.

    To my enormous disappointment, I was never able to get a selfie with Nicla. Thus I am bereft of the opportunity to be able to burn it slowly.

    “There’s nane ever fear’d that the truth should be heard,
    But they whom the truth would indite.”

    She can include “they” in her pronouns now

  26. bipod

    It looks like Humza is now almost certainly going to win. Kate has clearly cut a deal with him to be part of the “new” government as long as she endorses the dodgy election process.

    Police Scotland is a tepid organization that is easily pushed around by the political establishment, whatever they were about to do they bottled it. When Humza takes power it will all be quietly swept under the rug as a final favor to the murrells.

    Its not all bad news the gravy train will continue for a few more years, but Humza doesn’t have the same cult of personality that nicola had and he will inherit all of her baggage as the self proclaimed continuity candidate. He won’t last long.

  27. Big Jock

    I think Smitty suggested that the thing Murrell is involved with isn’t the 600k. It’s something much bigger! Albeit that is part of it.

    Craig Murray has also hinted at something much bigger. So to me it all points to some kind of international trade or definitely on an industrial scale.

    Now Murrell has resigned , will the case be brought to light. Or will the police wait until a new leader is in place.

    If I was the police, I would keep a close eye on flights to Faro.

  28. Brian Doonthetoon

    I’m gonna post here, an email I sent to Chris Law and Joe Fitzpatrick on 3rd February 2021. I received “automatic replies” from both of them and no further communication.

    From: Brian Doonthetoon brian@doonthetoon
    Subject: The State Of Our Party
    Date: 3 February 2021 at 00:35
    To:, Chris Law,,
    Cc: Heather McLean

    Hi Joe & Chris.
    Once upon a time, the SNP was a political party driven forward by the desire of independence of its ordinary members, through the branches and so on.
    However, I’ve just discovered that the party that used to be a “bottom up” organisation, has become a “top down” organisation.

    I wasn’t happy about your sacking, Joe. The fact that Scottish drugs deaths were not revealed to be recorded differently from other countries should have been mooted in your defence – but your boss threw you under the bus.
    And Chris – I still have the ’Spirit of Independence’ pen you gave me at City Square in early September 2014, which I used to mark “YES” on September 18th.
    It seems that Bob Costello was right all along.

    I will state that a woman is an “adult human female”. A transwoman is a “transwoman”. A transman is a “transman”.
    Spaces reserved for “women” should not be opened up to anyone who decides to self-ID as a “woman”, or fetishists from Aberdeen who are male but like to impose themselves into female toilets and are quite proud that they do and announce it on social media.

    The penultimate nail has just been hammered into my coffin of SNP membership. The only reason I am hanging on (for the moment) is to have a vote in the next leadership election.
    The sacking of Joanna Cherry – and the accusation of her “homophobia” by Nicola’s acolytes – was sheer stupidity. The stitch-up Alex Salmond and the resultant cover-up. Anyone remember Watergate? I despair.

    When I saw Blackford state umpteen times in the House of Commons, that “Scotland will not be dragged out of the EU against her will”, I actually believed that the upper echelons of the party had a great plan that would be unveiled at some point.
    Then came Nicola’s speech of January 2020, as we were dragged out of the EU against our will.
    What a disappointment!
    She had spent so much time trying to overturn the democratic vote of England & Wales to leave the EU, attending a rally in London and so on, that she lost the will to see the bigger picture that the “material change” had taken place and that Scotland was being dragged out of the EU “against our will”. The reason for holding a referendum on independence. And she bottled it.

    Then the fact that I was at every march/rally for independence in 2018 and only missed the Oban march/rally in 2019, but NEVER saw Nicola at any of them, although they were attended by SNP MPs, MSPs and councillors. I was even on the Glasgow march in January 2020, walking with Craig Murray for a while. No Nicola. However, she did have the time to be at “gay pride” type marches/rallies.
    Was this supporting the SNP’s raison d’e?tre of independence for Scotland?
    I’m guessing you both read ‘Wings Over Scotland’? You want to read the comments btl, if you want to get a feel for what we, ‘independistas’, are feeling about the state of the party. There are so many leaving the SNP and joining the ISP that it should be worrying the ‘high head yins’.

    The only thing that will save the SNP is if it has in its manifesto that the May Holyrood election is a plebiscite election, like in the old days of the SNP. Along the lines of (I paraphrase slightly from the link)…
    “The Scottish people are sovereign, and we hereby announce our intention to declare Scotland independent and submit that intention to the will of the people in this election for their approval.
    Accordingly, if the Scottish National Party should secure more than 50% of the constituency votes in this election, we will consider that a clear mandate to withdraw from the Treaty Of Union, declare Scotland to once more be an independent state, and seek recognition from the international community on the basis of Chapter 1, Article 1 of the UN Charter, the right of all peoples to self-determination, that self- determination having been expressed by this vote.”

    No more faffin’ about with a ‘roadmap to a referendum’ – what we want is a roadmap to INDEPENDENCE! I’m getting’ on… I want to see an independent Scotland before I pop my clogs.
    I thought about making public this email when I send it to you. However, I would prefer to hold it back until I receive replies from you both, affirming that WE, the ordinary members, with your help, can remake our party as a ‘bottoms up’ organisation.
    If I don’t receive any response with seven days, then, regretfully, I will have to put this email, and lack of response, into the public domain.

    One more thing before I finish.
    At any next election, whether it be Westminster, Holyrood or local council, I will not vote for any individual who feels the need to add to their social media profile, the terms “Pronouns she/her”, or “Pronouns he/him”.
    I act towards people as I find them. I don’t need THEM telling me how to treat them.
    Och, really lastly… I will not be voting SNP for my regional vote in May. There’s no point. Unless the SNP really melts down in the constituency vote – and that doesn’t look likely, going by recent polling. This SNP 1+2 nonsense is just that. Have a look at this:-

    Nah, this is lastly. After a couple of hours snooze, I woke up to find that our party, once proud to fight for independence, has become the butt of the joke. Really, you should read the comments up to midnight, if not further.
    If that’s me expelled from the party, so be it. The ISP beckons…
    Brian Doonthetoon

    You’ll see that I copied Heather McLean into that email. She was secretary of the Dundee West Constituency Association.

    On 28th March, I sent Heather another email.

    From: Brian Doonthetoon brian@doonthetoon
    Subject: My Leaving
    Date: 28 March 2021 at 20:14
    To: Heather McLean

    Hi Heather.
    This email is a courtesy to let you know that I left the SNP yesterday.
    I have found a new home for my Pro-Independence aspirations – and it’s not the ISP.
    This has nothing (well, mostly nothing!) to do with the local branches in Dundee, rather what has been going on in the top levels of the party over the last three years or so.
    You may recall an email I sent to Joe and Chris on 3rd February (I copied in you and REDACTED…
    In way of response to that email, I received an “Automatic Response” from my MP and “This is an automatic response” from my MSP. No further communication addressing the issues I raised in the email.
    As many have been saying recently, “I didn’t leave the SNP, the SNP left me.”
    I have copied my 3rd Feb email below, in case you missed it.

    Heather replied,
    From: Heather McLean
    Subject: Re: My Leaving
    Date: 28 March 2021 at 20:21
    To: Brian Doonthetoon brian@doonthetoon

    Hi Brian,
    Sorry to hear that you are leaving the SNP but on a personal note I can totally understand , sympathise and share your concerns. The personal attacks by SNP politicians and Nicola are not a good look and do themselves no favours.
    The leadership of the party has lost touch with the grassroots party members and the leadership style has become dictatorial and there seems to be a lack of focus on independence.
    I can guess where your new political home is and you’ll not be the first or last to move there.
    All the best Brian,

    3 days later, I discovered that Heather had also left the SNP and was 2nd on Alba’s list for NE Scotland (after Alex Salmond) for the forthcoming Holyrood election.

    Dundee SNP lost a lot of independence activists, like Heather, Denise Finlay, Dundee Annie and more, through the pursuit of an agenda that was nothing to do with INDEPENDENCE.

    Hell mend ’em.

  29. Shu

    At some point the unionists are going to dish the dirt on Nicola and show how a nationalist betrayed Scotland to reinforce the narrative of Scots are incompetent and can’t be trusted

    Any thought on how this will appear

  30. Garavelli Princip

    “Big Jock says:
    19 March, 2023 at 10:39 pm
    I think Smitty suggested that the thing Murrell is involved with isn’t the 600k. It’s something much bigger! Albeit that is part of it.

    Craig Murray has also hinted at something much bigger. So to me it all points to some kind of international trade or definitely on an industrial scale.”

    Yes, I saw some tweets to that effect earlier – now not there!

    They mentioned something I am not going to repeat here – cos it looks like warnings have been heeded.

    Craig asked someone how they “could say that” since he had been “warned off from doing so by the polis”

    This IS INDEED very big if these deleted tweets were correct.

    Seems that these investigations are being directed from outside Scotland – using the Scotpolis to do the “grunt work” (do they know how corrupt and incompetent they are?)

    Craig also made some cryptic remarks earlier (in connection with the £600k) – about looking for one thing – but finding something even bigger!

    Sounds massive!

  31. Iain More

    This is the kind of thing I expect from the Brit Tories and the Brit Fiberals.

  32. Shug

    Btw has anyone checked McDonald’s e mails to humza

  33. PhilM

    @Daisy Walker
    Can you call being an ex-international jewel thief a ‘previous career’?

  34. Phil MacVee

    This is the reply that the “winners” group would say.
    Having said that, the Scottish Parliament cannot tell me whether the broadcasts from require a TV licence.
    There seems to be no recognition of truth.

  35. stonefree

    It was obvious Murrell’s cunning plan to fix the election and to hand over to Yousaf, giving him the winning majority,
    But Murrel is not clever , everything is in place ,So Step up Yousaf to accept the Majority and Russel to present it
    A problem surfaces What is about to be presented is a fraudulent declaration ,simply it is not valid , It’s a fraud,
    it’s basis is Inaccurate It is also incomplete it’s not finished Murrell Yousaf and Russell know this!!!
    They can not accept this document again I repeat it is fraudulent, accept and they are adding to a fraud indeed compounding it.
    Any person who has signed the document can object and challenge They must do that Reject it. It is a fraud
    Yousaf wants to take it ,and move on Aye Right ,
    Trust as far as he can be thrown Horse Island at a push, hoping the Seagull’s bowels are moving well,
    Russell also kean to unload it ,that’ll be more money for the courts.Good the members will foot the bill ,
    Maybe they say “you’re having a laugh” and say No
    MPs,MSPs Councillors and Spads all divi up
    One of those groups might not be just as flush as last year, the public heart is bleeding but not enough to fill the tins

    It’s been a very long while since I read any of this.
    But I’m sure I’m close enough,hardly a cutting edge assessment

    Three Key Fiduciary Duties

    Duty of Care. Duty of care describes the level of competence and business judgment expected of a board member. …
    Duty of Loyalty. Duty of loyalty revolves primarily around board members’ financial self-interest and the potential conflict this can create. …
    Duty of Obedience.

    Murrell Yousaf and Russell Trustworthy ?
    Buy any acceptance of the Murrell documents, and Yousaf gets the job via fabricated paperwork and fills his pockets, as well as the chancers who follow him
    The paperwork should never be used

  36. Daisy Walker

    PhilM says:
    19 March, 2023 at 11:10 pm

    @Daisy Walker
    Can you call being an ex-international jewel thief a ‘previous career’?

    Ummm…. Busted….’s’a’fair cop’ as they say. Cary Grant made me do it, honest gov.

  37. gregor

    Garbage (2017): No Horses:

    “…There’ll be nothing to believe
    Nothing to lose
    There’ll be nothing to hide
    And there’ll be nothing to grow
    There’ll be nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing
    Cause this is the apocalypse…”:

  38. dearieme

    I trust that everyone here sympathised with ol’ Trumpy when ballot-rigged against?

  39. Louise Hogg

    Andy Wightman’s blog gives yet another example of legal/police being used to obstruct rather than carry out investigation.

    And your John Linden story seems to involve the same list of people Smitty expects to fall soon.

  40. Daisy Walker

    David Cameron
    Greenshill Capital
    Coronavirus Large Business Interuption Loan (80% taxpayer funded)
    Mr Gupta
    GFG Alliance
    £350 million
    Credit Suisse
    Non Existing Invoices
    Bluestone Resources
    Coal Order, what Coal Order
    Project Golf… pulished but heavily redacted due to commercial sensitivity, self valued at £259 million
    Simec – arm of GFG Alliance that deals with Power Projects…

    South Africa
    State Takeover
    United Arab Emmirates

    Australian Mining

    China Steel

  41. BLMac

    The last 4 lines of this verse are so prophetic….
    Breathes there the man, with soul so dead,
    Who never to himself hath said,
    This is my own, my native land!
    Whose heart hath ne’er within him burn’d,
    As home his footsteps he hath turn’d,
    From wandering on a foreign strand!
    If such there breathe, go, mark him well;
    For him no Minstrel raptures swell;
    High though his titles, proud his name,
    Boundless his wealth as wish can claim;
    Despite those titles, power, and pelf,
    The wretch, concentred all in self,
    Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
    And, doubly dying, shall go down
    To the vile dust, from whence he sprung,
    Unwept, unhonour’d, and unsung.
    from Sir Walter Scott
    from ‘The Lay of the Last Minstrel’, Canto sixth:

  42. Skip_NC

    dearieme @ 11:34pm, were there errors in counting the votes in the US presidential elections in 2020? Yes, same as there have been errors in the USA and every other country that has ever held elections in the history of humanity.

    Was Donald Trump ballot-rigged against? No. He wasn’t. Were there errors made? Well, if the Republican-controlled Arizona Senate is to be believed, yes, a mistake was made. They found another 363 votes for Joe Biden. Of course, by then, the results had already been declared and the results certified by the joint meeting of Congress, required under the US Constitution. The idea that Trump was the real winner is, quite simply, not credible. Over sixty federal and state judges, including many Republicans, have found no evidence. Indeed some of those judges have sanctioned or reported Trump’s lawyers for bringing frivolous lawsuits. Several have lost law licenses and numerous await verdicts.

    Incidentally, the 363 votes that Arizona found could be explained by a couple of errors. I am sure we all know how easy it is to type a 4 instead of a 1, or vice versa, on a ten-key pad. That accounts for three votes, leaving us with 360. Any number divisible by 9 indicates a transposition error. So a difference of 360 could be explained by typing 840 instead of 480 or vice versa. Those are the sort of mistakes that get made. Here in North Carolina, after counties give their initial vote totals, the state board tells them how many boxes to randomly audit, by hand-count. The county does some and the state comes in and does a few more or checks the county’s work. Here and there, a few votes are corrected. I am not aware of any case in NC where the winner has been changed after audit, except in local races where there are maybe 500 voters total and a few votes either way makes a big difference.

    So, if you really think Donald Trump was cheated, present your evidence – proper evidence that will stand up to scrutiny. Alternatively, you could spend your time doing something that will actually make a difference.

  43. Debatable Lands

    Rules don’t apply when the cause is so righteous. Laws must not be allowed to stand in the way of what is needed. The views of the majority meaningless when the party has judged them to be inconveniently wrong.

    I don’t know if it is even possible to fix Scotland now. The habit of immunity, the casual cronyism, the placing of obedient party loyalists in every role ahead of any ability, the politicisation of EVERYTHING. It is like trying to unscramble eggs. Nobody even remembers what proper governance and the responsible use of power for the good of all looks like.

    If I win an election, I get to do what I want – just about sums it up.

    The problem begins with a the creation of a cause that forgives all acts done in its name. Zealotry and the othering of opponents becomes a norm. The party becomes a bit cultish and strict on obedience. It becomes a place that attracts other types of zealots from the fringes with views that were never previously given power as they were simply daft or objectionable to the overwhelming majority.

    Thus, the party of independence became a portal that legitimised every and any activist agenda, as long as they signed up to indy. There is no longer a sin that is not washed clean by swearing allegiance to the Yes movement or actually the SNP.

    The SNP became a clearing house for angry, militant minorities who wanted payback or thought to force their views on an unwilling majority. The tyranny of the do-gooder and self important. It was their way into power and they intend to keep it.

    It’s like the old separation of Church and State thing. Belief and politics are tricky when mixed together. Independence never was a party political issue. It isn’t left wing or right wing. It isn’t linked to gender or your attitude to recycling. By making it so, it was always vulnerable to capture and exploitation by agendas for which it was convenient camouflage.

  44. James Barr Gardner

    writer Roberto Saviano: ‘London is the most corrupt city in the world’

    He’s feeling bravado: as I enter, he gives me a lowdown on how much a kilo of cocaine costs around the world, listing prices: $2,000 (£1,548) in Colombia, $15,000 in Mexico, $70,000 in the United Kingdom.

    He explains how each kilo will result in 3,000 doses, which will garner $210,000 in the UK. “London is the capital of cocaine twice over. First, it’s the capital of consumption, and secondly, it is the home of money laundering. The turnover is higher than oil.”
    Saviano quotes the UN drugs chief Antonio Maria Costa, who claimed that drugs money kept the financial system afloat at the height of the credit crunch in 2008.

    While production happens primarily in South America, he explains, “90 per cent of the money laundering is done in Europe and North America. The money doesn’t stay in South America.

    London, at the moment, is the real capital of money laundering in the world.” And the attraction of London? Arriving in the city doesn’t immediately raise suspicions that you’re a money launderer. “London is an easy gateway to Europe.

    Brexit is useful because London becomes an offshore city,” he explains. “I always say, and I sound exaggerated but it’s true, London is the most corrupt city in the world.”

    Scotland needs to walk away from this Cesspit City of London and Corrupt so called ruling class. Better together, Aye, Right !

  45. Andrew Davidson

    A ‘turn of phrase’ eh? So it’s nice to know the latest getoutofjailfree card that is going to be played.

  46. Lulu Bells

    The perm sec needs to check out the proper processes and procedures. When a complaint is made against someone in the civil service you don’t just ask them if they did it and if they say ‘naw’ then that’s fine. Just because it’s a minister makes no difference, else how would Alex Salmond have ended up where he did?

  47. Mac

    Craig Murray
    “How to explain what happened to the Murrells, within legal constraints.
    The missing £600,000 and the police.
    Have you ever been searching for something lost, but stumbled upon something else much more important instead?”

    So there is the tweet. It is still there. I would not even class it as a rumour. CM evidently knows what it is but can’t say (within legal constraints). So it is a certainty that so does SC.

    Give us a clue lads, this is murder. I am really trying my best not to get carried away thinking it could be this or that…

  48. Garavelli Princip

    Lulu Bell:

    “Just because it’s a minister makes no difference, else how would Alex Salmond have ended up where he did?”

    Because AS was an EX- (first) Minister.

    Brit Civil Servants fawn swoon and grovel before the holder of a ‘Royal’ warrant. This is the nature of our colonial status.

  49. Bob Costello

    I will have to remember this the next time I go into a bank point a gun at the teller and say “ put all the cash you have in the cash drawer into this bag and don’t think of pressing the panic button” the turn of phrase could be explained as I meant to say “ I would like to
    Make a withdrawal from my account “

  50. Contrary

    Listening to Mike Russell on radio, and wow that guy is in cloud cuckoo land if he thinks his assurances after this debacle that anyone in Scotland is reassured of the integrity of the election process purely on his word. His comment ” we are in talks with Ash Regan,,,” to get her agreement to stop making a fuss sounds like coercion. He doesn’t have time or interest to look into why lies happened ,,, not reassuring to the public, who are told to just believe him, without any evidence for why they should. Well, Mr Russell, I don’t believe or trust you, and what you’ve told me alarms me rather than assures me, and I’m a member of that public.

  51. stuart mctavish

    Full marks to Keith Brown or whoever first spotted the breach in the ministerial code.

    Seems fair to conclude that the replacement for the lovely lady that got on her knees for the Dallas Cowboys* has also employed some sort of turn of phrase in:

    (a) Crediting Yousaf, rather than Brown or the Lord’s Advocate, with the authority to confirm the tasks given to civil servants and spads within the justice department (an excusable error if, and only if, Brown was the originator of the complaint), and

    (b) Failing (deliberately?) to confirm that civil servants had not, in any event, allowed ministers or spads access to the documents in question

    * instead of (eg.) apologising for the man flu fear porn and taking more than a week or two to observe (officially) that there was nothing to worry about after all

  52. PacMan

    Kcor says: 19 March, 2023 at 10:10 pm

    Doesn’t work like that as Craig Murray found out.

    He was harassed and jailed while those who had revealed much more were left untouched.

    There is one law for the masters and another law for the plebs.

    Very true but this will in the long run make the law unworkable as well.

    Unfortunately until then, a lot of people will fall foul of it.

    I could imagine that some of these people falling foul of the HCB had initially thought it was a good idea as a way to get at the ‘misogynistic, often homophobic and sometimes racist bigots’.

  53. Breeks

    Can this be verified?

    Both Yousef and Forbes would repeat the “Both Votes SNP” strategy? After all “this”? Really???

    I means, FFS, can somebody check? What exactly are we trying to save here? Has nobody learned anything?

    This attitude is a residual legacy from Sturgeon’s eight year long toxic misadventure.

    Is that it? Poor old Scotland is allowed a couple of breaths fresh air, one circuit round the courtyard, then it’s back to the electoral waterboarding?

    Don’t they understand how close the SNP stands to being “the” enemy?

    Can Ash Regan save this?

    Should Ash Regan save this?

  54. Etticus

    Classic Mike Russell on the radio just now, “nothing to see here, all is fine”.

    Craig Murray hinting at something big maybe even international money laundering and delayed police investigations.

    Rumours of Sturgeon and Murrell being seen at an airport.

    Tweets being deleted by others.

    Kate Forbes is now fine with it all.

    No idea what any of this means.

    What we know for sure is that money has gone missing and we have thousands of fake SNP members. I suppose at its best we have theft of money being hidden by pretending the cash came from fake membership subs, at worst I have no idea because the fact is I wouldn’t put anything beyond Nicola Sturgeon and Peter Murrell.

    It could all be rumour and conjecture but as the saying goes there is no smoke without fire and there is a lot of smoke blowing out of the SNP HQ bin fire.

  55. Mac

    If I had to guess what the police may have stumbled upon, while looking for the missing 600k of ring fenced money, it would be evidence of Murrell attempting to pervert the course of justice.

    To establish criminal intent or the lack of it I am thinking the cops will have seized computers etc and were reviewing Murrells communications preceding, during and after the fraud took place.

    The 600k fraud happened between 2017-2019.

    That overlaps right over the stitch-up.

    Murrell was badly over confident during that period (as we can see by the blasé way he committed the fraud). He thought he was untouchable. That over-confidence, and him being a bit thick generally, would IMHO make the chances of Murrell putting something incriminating in a message during that period very high.

    Peter Murrell is the weak link in all of it and (if anyone can) he will bring them all down.

    I am hoping as much as speculating here. I feel I need another smitty fix soon.

  56. Luigi

    Failure to clean up properly and rerun the leadership election will be the final nail in the SNP coffin. I will be disappointed in Kate Forbes if she plays along with this sweeping under the carpet. I get the feeling that both Mike and Kate just want it over with, but sorry it won’t wash with the public IMO.

  57. Garavelli Princip

    If Salmond knew what was going on, and was threatening to ‘spill’ it could explain why they tried to take him out!

  58. Ottomanboi



    Ref. also JamesBarrGardner above. 03:47

  59. AndyH

    I reiterate.

    Ash Regan please throw a very large spanner in the works. Do not agree to continuing this election farce as it stands.

    Kick up as much of a stink as you can while the going is good.

  60. Dorothy Devine

    From Yours For Scotland, someone below the line says that Yousof and Forbes are saying both votes for the SNP , Ash Regan understands the d’hondt system and is saying otherwise.

    We all know that both votes for the SNP is denying independence.

    Years ago I found an excellent piece on youtube explaining the system with total clarity – I wonder if any of the SNP watched and they deliberately sabotaged the election with their ‘both votes for the SNP” or was it just ignorance?

  61. Republicofscotland

    I’ll say it again if Ash Regan doesn’t win (minus the fix being in) then the SNP membership doesn’t want independence, and we’ll know then that the SNP isn’t a party for Scottish independence.

  62. desimond

    A question that’s been bugging me all weekend….Can anyone name a CEO of any other Political Party>

    Why was the SNP set up like a corporate entity?

  63. John Main


    “No smoke without fire”?

    Really? Very disappointed to read you repeating that. This is the age of online disinformation with malign intent. Wafting smoke is what the bad actors do.

    FFS everybody. Learn to recognise and respect facts and reality.

  64. John

    Is this Smitty a wind-up merchant, there was a guy on twitter doing a similar pitch the other week, he was a con artist. We can all speculate and manipulate to say what people want to believe in. For me SNP is a rotten apple, nothing can be done to make it good again.

  65. Mac

    I had never really seen much of him in the flesh before the Salmond inquiry but when I watched Murrell giving evidence I really did remark to myself how easily he bare-face lied.

    But the thing that really caught my attention was that he did it all with a smirk.

    I suspect the abuses of power perpetrated by the Murrells as SNP FM and SNP CEO were common and routine. This is exactly why you should never have had a husband and wife in both roles.

    The Murrells are really not far off being the Scottish Ceausescus. Just think of the brutality of what they attempted to do to Alex Salmond. Normal people don’t do that…

    As for the police, the judiciary and the media, their respective roles in all it is a disgrace and a scandal as well.

    It is like we are all waking up from a nine year nightmare.

    And it times during the darkest hours that it really did feel like a nightmare. I’d bet my life it did for Alex Salmond too.

  66. ronald anderson

    Garvelli Princpl 8.32.

    (If Salmond knew what was going on, )

    Get your heid oot of the conspiracy book Alex Salmond has nothing to do with this present situation thats all down to Murrell/Sturgeon .

  67. John Main

    @Otto 8:52

    Given that the corruption at HR is more blatant, overtly criminal, and more institutionalised, it may better be argued that England needs a divorce from Scotland.

    Neither Starmer nor Sunak have hijacked the police and judiciary to fit up Corbyn, May, etc on trumped up charges.

    Not even for Johnson, where it could be argued the charges wouldn’t need to be trumped up!

    Compare and contrast with the treatment of AS.

    Naw, when it comes to corruption, Scotland is indeed the best wee country in this part of the world. That’s not a result any of us should be happy to live with.

  68. Mac

    At this point I am not sure who Kate Forbes really is. She might be a little naïve.

    Ash Regan is the clear ‘leader’ among the three. Seeing her, I think Regan might actually stand a chance of cleaning up the SNP. I fear Forbes will be too wishy washy, too nice, and end up caught in the headlights, and doing nothing.

    If the folk in the SNP have a brain left in their collectives heads they will vote for Regan 1 and Forbes 2.

    I still think Regan and Forbes could be a very good team but with Regan as leader and Forbes as deputy. Between Forbes and Regan, it is clear who the alpha-cat is.

  69. Jm

    They were always just a pair of neds really.

  70. Red

    What they have in the horribly corrupt United States, and what we therefore have in the UK/Scotland as the United States’ #1 offshore colony, is Managed Democracy.

    You can vote for whoever you like (not Trump) under a managed democracy but the UniParty wins every election. Because all the important issues are decided between them before they ask for the formality of your votes.

    That’s why we’ve had 13 years of “Conservative” government that’s exactly like the 13 years of “Labour” government that preceded it, and 12 years of “Scottish nationalist” government that’s consistently failed to do Scottish nationalist things (but somehow has plenty of time and resources to advance sinister agendas nobody voted for)

    The kind of people who become MP’s and MSP’s have a lot more in common with each other than they do with you. They are a separate class, with their own class interests that have nothing to do with mere voters.

    They wear different coloured rosettes for the same reason the angler fish dangles a glowing lure in front of his ravening jaws.

  71. Mac

    Jm says:
    “They were always just a pair of neds really.”

    This seems to be the case.

    The Ceau-ned-scus. Doing it Scotland style.

  72. Liz

    Trying to get my head around all this info.

    If the membership numbers were inflated, and it appears they were, all previous election results are unsafe.

    In 2021, I witnessed oor Nikla and her entourage love bombing polling stations with her own camera crew, hingers on and photographer on the sounthside of Glasgow.

    She got loads of attention from people polling, selfies galour.

    My take in it was she was definitely going to win, Greens seemed very popular, Cons & Alba were no where.

    I was Albas polling person, though not a member.

    What did surprise me was the scale of the votes over all for SNP 1&2.
    Remember the ballot papers were held overnight for 48 hours, cos of Covid, yeah right.

    To cut a long comment short, were the fake members counted in postal votes.
    Mi vote, would only deal with names sent to them.

    My feeling was, she only wanted another 5 years to complete the job of destroying Scotlands economy

    The voting system needs tightened up.

  73. Ian McCubbin

    The more that comes out the worse it looks for the Murrells.

    They have been the most bullying,lying narcissistic leaders of any political party.
    I just hope Ash Regan and Kate Forbes could make a good team, with Ash leading.
    But this has to now come from a restarted leadership process.
    With all that has come out the current process is corrupted beyond belief.
    If the election is not rerun and Yousaf wins SNP will be Old Labour and destined to lose many seats at next election.

  74. Geoff Anderson

    @ Dorothy Devine

    Both votes SNP was a good strategy over a decade ago when the vote could pick up list seats to add to constituency seats. When it was deployed at the last election it had one purpose keep ISP, or Alba out and the deal with the Greens followed.

    That Million wasted votes put Tories and Labour into Holyrood and therefore she needed the Green votes.

  75. Chic McGregor

    A masterful piece of satire by George Kerevan in The National today.

  76. Viscount Ennui

    John Main says:
    20 March, 2023 at 9:46 am

    @Otto 8:52

    “Given that the corruption at HR is more blatant, overtly criminal, and more institutionalised, it may better be argued that England needs a divorce from Scotland.”

    Spot on. Corruption exists everywhere but takes different forms. Here in Scotland it has involved the placement of SNP loyalists in every significant civic post in both the public and third sectors so that accountability can be voided at all costs.
    Every QUANGO is infected from the top down. Every regulator, Police Scotland and even the ombudsman.

    It was a deliberate strategy materminded by Swinney.

    Whoever takes over the SNP will have their work cut-out to dissemble this power base without falling a victim to it.

  77. Scotsrenewables

    Mike Russell on the BBC News website:

    Mr Russell said he did not know that the SNP membership numbers had dropped by about a third over about two years, and said he did not know if it was related to the controversial Gender Recognition Reform bill.

    “We were losing members and we were losing members that we should have known about, absolutely,” he said.

    “We were clearly not told about that. That is something I want to know why that took place, but I don’t want to know it this week.”

    So no-one told the President of the party?

    Aye, right

    So no-one told the

  78. Doug

    “All great changes are preceded by chaos”.

    I agree with the person who said they hoped Regan would chuck in a muckle great spanner intae the wirks.

    In the end it could radicalize the SNP. Or it could lead to those in the SNP who truly want independence leaving to join up with Alba and other pro indy organizations – hopefully adopting Sinn Fein’s abstention policy on taking seats in the Westminster cesspit. Worth a try since we’re going nowhere as far as independence is concerned with the SNP the way it is.

    Independence by all and every means.

  79. Lenny Hartley

    Liz, Wait, What Mi Voice run Scottish Parliament elections as well.?
    Every day is a skoolday!

  80. Big Jock

    Lies upon lies. Mike is just continuing the cover up to protect his own skin. I think we need rid of 100% of the leaders. Not one of them should be allowed to stay.

    A new leader, a new regime and no more lies. Drain the swamp now!

  81. ronald anderson

    Contrary 7.54

    If in doubt wheel out Mr dependable Mike Russell president in name only / he’s told more lies than Tam Pepper FFS .

  82. Willie B

    I was just thinking, what could be tied in with the £600k of ringfenced money that the polis are investigating, and one thing that kept popping into my head and it might not be anything, but what about all this so called Covid payments that the Brit government keep mentioning every once in a while that was supposed to go to business’s, I wonder if some of that has been found now, it’s the only thing I can think of other than evidence linked to the Salmond stitch up, the way the SNIB manager just upped and left not long into the job, etc, got to follow the money I think…… tin foil hat off now

  83. Skip_NC

    Red @ 10:15am, you misunderstand the problems with democracy in the USA. If the helper-skelter that is Scottish politics ever slows down I may offer Stu a piece for Soapbox.

  84. Sandy Howden

    Kelly Parry the new leader (Coup) in Midlothian council is the partner of Midlothian MP Owen Thomson who was the Chief whip in WM until he got sacked in the WM coup. He was in charge of finding out who recorded the discussion about protecting the SNP abuser(s) and was the only one sacked. The rest stood down.

  85. desimond


    “At this point I am not sure who Kate Forbes really is. She might be a little naïve.

    Personally I feel Kate is extremely shrewd. The sudden “I’m happy and trust the process” Party loving play seems very coy and actually fear Kate is a Nicola MkII…ready to “step up” and embrace the Power and Prestige running the Parish Council all to readily and sure enough far too easily we will end up down the same road as before.

  86. Rogerborg

    “Turn of phrase” is the new-newspeak for “flat out lied” then?

  87. Gordon Bain

    On Call Kaye this morning KF was asked – out of the blue – whether she would continue to “promote gay rights” if elected leader. What does that even mean? What rights do gay people not have now that I do? Or was Adams deliberately conflating gay with trans, as though they are the same thing. Adams is evil.

  88. Dan

    @ Lenny Hartley

    No, it’s IDOX that run the Scottish elections with the new e-counting systems.

    So that was a load more cash bunged to IDOX for their staff and machines, and also removing involvement in and scrutiny of the democratic process away from everyday people at the counts.

  89. Scotsrenewables


    “Due to the volatile nature of recent events Ash Regan has held off from media to forge a path forward in conjunction with SNP HQ.

    The campaign team thanks Mike Russell for stepping in and understanding the situation.

    There has been a surge in traffic in our campaign mailbox and social media from concerned members, looking for guidance on whether the ballot will go ahead unaltered or if the ballot will be reset.

    My team have put forward proposals that provide assurance to members with minimum disruption to the election process that we can move ahead constructively on.

    In 2015 selection contests for Westminster candidatures had varying end dates. In some cases, candidates were removed from the ballot before a race ended, where this happened members were able to update their vote. The facility exists within the Mi-Voice system.

    This would have the benefit of not disrupting members who are happy with their vote while providing an opportunity to reconsider for those who are not.

    In addition each candidate would be allowed to send one email to the members using the SNP mailing system – allowing a last minute updated message that reflects current events.

    We thank Mike for taking this suggestion seriously and lend our support to the integrity of the ballot. It is important that all parties respect the outcome of the ballot and give full support to the new leader of the SNP.”

  90. Ottomanboi

    Scotland’s «corruption» is rather small beer, small pond compared to the wider Anglo-American variety. Scotland’s problem springs from the socio-cultural political environment which lacking accountability mechanisms allows oversized fish to flourish in the margins of the small pond. All redolent of the typical colonial/colonized mindset.
    Without «corruption» the English, later British, empire would not have gained traction. It was part of the divide and rule expansion policy.
    The «done nothing wrong» platitude, so often uttered in British politics, is suggestive of a cultural conceit. British is a very good thing, much better than being foreign where «Spanish practices» abound.
    Guilt feelings are not something I associate with a British establishment which uses and abuses as it considers advantageous. The British invented the concept of «fairness» as a smoke screen for devious intent.
    It is a term which defies accurate translation.

  91. sarah

    @ Rev: your poll on would I support a crowdfunder to get an interdict to stop this leadership election.

    I’m not on twitter so my vote has to be here: YES I would. It is the only way to prevent yet another fraudulent action by SNP.

  92. Liz

    @lenny hartley sorry I should have been plainer, they run internal elections only.

    Was always suprised when Angus R and later Keith B, romped it to be depute at the time.

    The Holyrood elections are probably worse, run by a private company, not sure of the name, who also count the votes.
    Something which Mhairi Hunter tried to deny.

  93. Etticus


    If you weren’t so proud of your heritage as being descended from one of the worst examples of imperial conquest, genocide and oppression that has happened in human history you might have a leg to stand on with this.

    The ottomans were a savage regime that committed genocide in Armenia and up until the beginning of the 20th century still had eunuchs in the royal court and were trading in slaves where the captured menfolk (who in the past included Scot’s, Irish and other people from Britain and across Europe and Africa) were routinely castrated. The scale of this slavery operation dwarfed anything that went on with the transatlantic slave trade and its savagery was on a different level.

    Id recommend a little contrition if you don’t want people hurling rocks through your glass house.

  94. Beauvais

    The contrast between the old SNP before devolution, when very few were full-time employees of the party or were an SNP MP, and the current party couldn’t be starker.

    Prominent SNP members had to fit in their mostly selfless activism between earning a living as teachers, engineers, solicitors or farmers. People who lived in the real world. There was integrity and character enough.

    Contrast that with the hideous devolution era SNP and the thousand or more who get a nice salary. The hundred or more parliamentarians, the many people they employ – many of whom aspire to being in parliament too – the numerous HQ employees and the big salaries some of them have – we haven’t even known for years what the pay of the CEO and the COO has been – and lastly the awful SPADs.

    We’re told to admire the wonderful professionalism of the modern SNP. That’s just it though. People who are on a payroll have no persistent drive to secure Scottish independence. Humza Yousaf exemplifies this type, content with devolution. He’s never had a job in the outside world away from the SNP.

    The MSP backbenchers are too preoccupied with becoming ministers. The ministers preoccupied with promotion. The party employees and hangers-on concerned with becoming MSPs or MPs themselves.

    Corruption in such a milieu – especially with the Brit state stirring things – is almost inevitable.

    Alba and Salvo are the modern day iterations of the old indy focussed SNP.

  95. Auld Nickum

    Within hours of the polls opening, a relative of mine cast his vote, just one name, no preferences, a rock solid unequivocal endorsement, I just hope he made the sensible choice, but knowing of his loyalty to the Wee Nickum, it doesn’t look good. I imagine many other members did the same without taking the time to listen to any uncomfortable truth that would give them cause to worry or doubt that the Dear Leader is not the full shilling, the puir insecure bairnies caught up in the vice they dare not even try to recognize, that will never do!
    In light of unfolding events, this farce should be halted immediately, but that would mean curtains for continuity and is unlikely to happen. No matter, when Humza wins and completes the corruption, it will subject the end of the SNP to a lingering and painful death that’s surely a suitable case for euthanasia? I don’t think so, they need to experience the agony and despair that we’ve had to suffer for years.

  96. Antoine Roquentin

    As my Granny always used to say: “Just because people can readily point to numerous infractions of “legality” doesn’t mean that the Crookocracy is remotely in danger of exposure or collapse through the ‘superior’ weight of logic. That expendable stock, always red-herring, is occasionally thrown to the public is but an necessary gesture initiated purely for the sake of maintaining the appearance of probity.” Whit a wummin!

  97. Ottomanboi


    I believe the expression is «hoisted by your own petard».
    Ottomanboi is an ironic name. I am of Syriac/Assyrian heritage. My ancestors were Ottoman subjects and did fairly well, barring the occasional massacre at the hands of the Kurds. The Kurds acknowledge their rôle in ethnic cleansing of Armenians etc modern Turkey, with notable exceptions e.g Orhan Pamuk, does not.
    The Ottomans were honest in their methods, very in your face, the Brits….
    Ottoman culture was, despite appearances, cosmopolitan, sophisticated and anything but dull. Ottoman Turkish language is an exemplar of that.
    Re «slavery», you are confusing Ottomans with Arabs, especially the traders of Oman and Zanzibar.
    I was born in Baghdad in late 2003, the «glasshouse» was well broken by allied action, thank you.
    Back to Scotland matters?

  98. James Che

    The corruption in the devolved government sent to Scotland under Westminster Legislation is believable,

    Remember this is not Scotlands 1707 parliament that ceased to exist and was extinguished before it could enter any further into Westminster new parliament of Great Britain, or continue in the treaty of union,

    So not that surprised corruption should overspill to the branch office in Scotland via, being run by civil servants on the Crowns payroll and political parties from Scotland sitting as actors in Westminster parliament in that non Scottish legislated parliament under the “Scotland Act” from Westminster.

    This was the raison d’ etre for a managed devolved government to Scotland.

    Corruption spreads along its veins to its extremities.

  99. James Che


    Valid question,
    Why did the NuSNP have a CEO as if they were a business?

  100. James Che

    Well if the NuSNP were running SNP as a corporation or Business, there are plenty of opportunities to embezzle from the company.
    At this point you also have to inquire how this CEO based company was funded,?
    Public Money?

  101. akenaton

    For a start Forbes requires to be elected as first minister, that wont happen by offering a bonfire.
    The SNP members are still in thrall to the Party and the personal kudos received by being members of what is still one of the largest political entities.
    At the moment it is all about election and as said above, Forbes is miles ahead of Reagan in political acumen.
    Once elected Forbes can make her presence felt, with Independence supporters and ex Sturgeonistas alike: and the large number of floating voters who were disgusted by the activities of M&Co, but who now may come back, like me,or join for the first time.

    A wholesale bin fire as proposed by an impetuous Reagan, would mean the end of the party and The Dream for decades.

  102. cirsium

    @Liz 10.25

    And no exit polls. Wait a minute, what does that remind me of? No exit polls at the 2014 referendum.

  103. Republicofscotland

    “At the moment it is all about election and as said above, Forbes is miles ahead of Reagan in political acumen.”


    Oh right I see, so she hide from the GRRB vote, whilst Regan had the moral standards to resign.

    Forbes has no indy plan her route is a dead end, a vote for Forbes is a vote to remain in the union, a vote for Regan is a vote to ditch this rancid union.

    Regan MUST win or nothing will change.

  104. sam

    Angus B McNeil says the process of allowing people to change their vote is a “sensible and reasonable compromise”. McNeil is his own man, not a “trougher”, imo.

    The compromise, if agreed, allows the candidates to put out a final email to all SNP members. This offers the women the chance to put the boot firmly into Yousaf who has already shared his approval of Murrell online

  105. Etticus


    I see your knowledge of the ottomans is as poor as your knowledge of Scotland. Non existent.

    You seem to suffer from an irrational hatred of the English or Anglo Saxons, you’re deliberate attempts to blame the Kurds and Arabs for the crimes of the Ottoman Empire give the game away. I imagine if you knew anything about Scotland you’d know that the vast majority of Scots and all scots with a Scot’s language ancestry (and that included Doric and Shetlandic) are Anglo Saxons themselves as the scots language is a dialect of old angle or English or Inglis and part of the Northumbrian language group as per the works of Rev Alexander Warrack who wrote the Scots language dictionary.

    So laddie, try not commenting on things you know nothing about and as I said watch your glasshouse.

  106. Grendel

    Colour me unsurprised to see the cold dead hand of Ian McCann still at work as SNP Compliance Officer. Once upon a time I thought this role was about maintaining standards within the SNP. I’ve now come to believe this post is instead designed to gather up all the dirt on individuals within the party, and find how best to cover it up while simultaneously hanging it over the heads of the miscreants to keep them on a short leash and in line. What we have here in one office is an Aegean Stables worth of internal party sleaze, thrown into one massive bucket and suspended by a single wire, over which the Sword of Damocles hangs. Unfortunately for the cabal who were in charge, that sword has fallen, and the contents are beginning to tip out.
    The election of the continuity candidate Humza Yousaf may well delay the spillage, but to be honest the damage is done.
    I’m also unsurprised to see Neil Gray mentioned as part of Mr Yousaf’s campaign team. May of the shenanigans I observed in Airdrie under Mr Gray and Alex Neil are now saw writ large on the national stage. I recall the 2015 Westminster selection process for the Airdrie & Shotts seat which saw a plethora of anonymous complaints to SNP HQ about Mr Grays opponents. Candidates such as Craig Murray failed vetting, while others were removed from the short list at the last second to leave a two-horse race in which one candidate was illegally endorsed by office bearers and complaints of GDPR breaches were sent to Nicola Sturgeon, Peter Murrell, Ian McCann and Scott Martin – where they were quietly ignored.
    There are a few new faces in the list of names calling on the SNP to sort it’s act out in North Lanarkshire – but they are asking the wrong people for help. Asking Ian McCann for help here is like asking Fred West for tips on laying a new patio.

  107. Cactus

    Agree with your comment at 1:35pm Republicofscotland

    From a purely campaigning point of view for iScotland, only ONE of the candidates first names checks-out anyway (see below.) Furthermore, this compromised and critical election ballot must be reset and voted upon again. Performing a CTRL+ALT+DEL is a necessary requirement or the SNP will not function anymore, resulting in a systematic ‘freeze’ and hanging their members out to dry.

    Humza for independence
    Kate for independence
    Ash for independence!

    A. Vote. For. Ash. Regan. Is. A. Vote. For. Independence.

  108. Ottomanboi

    How obtuse you do seem.

  109. Dorothy Devine

    Ottomanboi, I think of you as quite a sensible young fella so I expect you to ignore provocation like a sensible young fella should!

  110. Tinto Chiel

    @Ottomanboi: I always enjoy your contributions, which show an internationalist aspect and an excellent awareness of the recurring symptoms of colonialism.

    Apologies in the past for not realising Syriac is not synonymous with Syria.

    Every day a school day on Wings, etc.

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