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Wings Over Scotland

Did we miss something?

Posted on October 25, 2013 by

We were a little confused as we caught up with our Twitter timeline this morning.


Brilliant result? What?


Paid off”? In what sense? The Tories came 4th in Dunfermline in 2007, 4th in 2011, and 4th last night. That seems to us to be the exact opposite of paying off. It seems to be a lot of hard work to make no progress whatsoever.


Vote up? James Reekie got 84 fewer votes last night than he did in 2011. With a lower turnout that represents a slightly higher share of the vote, but even then only by 1.7%, and he’d have had to increase his vote by almost 50% to overtake even the spectacularly dismal showing of the 3rd-placed Lib Dem.


Delighted? Really? We can just about make a case for the up-and-coming youngster saying “Well, we held what we had and this 4th place was fractionally better than the last 4th place we got”, but it seems an awfully long way from that to a state of delight when the UK’s governing party trails in last with a single-figure vote share.

But wait. Is there something in Ruth Davidson’s very last line – “Team Tory”?


Alan Roden is the Scottish political editor of the Daily Mail, which got awfully excited about the result considering the Mail isn’t normally known for bigging up the Labour Party. In the Herald, Robbie Dinwoodie put a number to the alleged tactical voting:

“With UKIP joining the fray there was thought to be a strong chance that the Tories would struggle to save their deposit. They claim to know of several hundred of their voters who voted Labour to snub Alex Salmond”

…which seems a stretch given the near-identical Conservative votes in 2011 and last night (and the fact that 900-odd UKIP voters materialised from somewhere, you’d imagine most likely the Tory camp), but is an interesting comment all the same.

The two parties whose politicians and supporters were most excited online last night were certainly Labour and the Tories, and they’re supposed to be deadly ideological enemies. One of them came first and the other came, effectively, last. (Everyone except the big four lost their deposit.)

So should at least one of them not have been downcast? When Conservatives are cock-a-hoop and slapping each other on the back over a Labour by-election victory, what does that suggest to you about the state of British politics, readers?

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112 to “Did we miss something?”

  1. Morag says:

    Wasn’t there something about the Tories being ecstatically happy so long as a unionist won, irrespective of which party they were standing for?  Maybe that’s the true source of their otherwise inexplicable glee.

  2. Melissa Murray says:

    I’ve gotten to the point where I can’t tell the difference any longer.
    Didn’t Ian Smart write a blog recently saying Labour voters would prefer Thatcher to Salmond?
    Oh how far they’ve fallen.

  3. Juteman says:

    Of course they are happy.
    The Westminster Party won. It doesn’t really matter if your team wears the away strip, or the home strip.

  4. Murray McCallum says:

    #TeamTory ecstatic with not even getting a podium spot or a medal?  This anti-competitive mentality is ruining the UK.

  5. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

    Maybe they’re relieved at beating UKIP to fourth spot.  On that subject another dismal result for The Green Party. Two successive by-elections where UKIP have beaten them.  

  6. theycan'tbeserious says:

    Yet another example of the “driver, engineer and signalman of the gravy train” working in harmony to ensure the boilers are stoked, the lines are greased and the signals are at green for a smooth run to the Westminster terminal.
    Where exactly is the democracy in this cabal?

  7. Ella says:

    I don’t see much in this tactical voting stuff. I wouldn’t vote Labour in Westminster elections just to keep the Tories out even though that would be the most logical way to do it. i would stick to voting for what ever party I actually believed had the best policy and the candidate I liked. Maybe I’m underestimating the hatred for the SNP though.

  8. G. Campbell says:

    Reekie has every reason to be delighted. He’s more popular than his “leader”.

    Scottish Parliament Election, 2011 : Glasgow Kelvin
    Ruth Davidson 7.5%

    Scottish Parliament by-election, 2013: Dunfermline
    James Reekie 8.3%

  9. Malky113 says:

    I well remember the Tory candidate ( Alan Hogarth)at the Glasgow Central By-Election in 1989 going round with a loudspeaker urging a Labour vote (Mike Watson- I wonder what became of him!) to stop the SNP bandwagon after Jim Sillars’ win in Govan

  10. Susan S says:

    Let them have their moment.  Poor souls. 

  11. Brian Powell says:

    Of course it was a victory for the Tories. As long as Labour keep doing their work for them they can sit back and say well done Labour.
    They have liittle presence in Scotland so it useful having LibDems do the dirty work as SofS, and take the flak. Just look at how that has worked out for the LibDems!
    If Labour stops the Yes vote going through, then they, the Tories, will still be in power in Westminster, and what can the Useless 45 Lab MPs do?
    Even if the Tories lose the GE in 2015 they know they will be back in power again and again and again etc.
    Se how easily the reversed, sorry I mean built on, accelerated, what Labour had put in place to dismantle the welfare state.
    See how Labour shadows the Tory policies in the vain hope of gaining the SE of England.
    Every Labour victory in Scotland is a victory for the Conservatives. Labour just can’t join up the dots and work that out.

  12. Richard Lucas says:

    If your expectations are very low, it doesn’t take much to meet them.  I’m guessing the Tories are just relieved they weren’t captured, cooked and eaten by irate West Fifers.

  13. Juteman says:

    Scottish Labour. The Tories useful fools.
    The sad thing is, some Labour folk know it.

  14. Cath says:

    “Every Labour victory in Scotland is a victory for the Conservatives. Labour just can’t join up the dots and work that out.”
    Exactly this. Last night shows that. It also shows the Westminster party, which is the only real alternative to the SNP has no policies at all beyond “keep Westminster rule at all costs”. Very sad, as both parties would benefit in Scotland from independence and we could finally have a real democracy.

  15. Piemonteis says:

    To be fair, their share was up 1.7%, whereas we would normally expect their percentage to drop in line with the death rate. And they did fend off UKIP, which is probably important in Conservative circles.
    Let’s remember that the Tories were smug in 2011 after only losing two seats from 2007. They might be the Nasty Party down south, but up here they’re the Hairmless Party.

  16. desimond says:

    @Melissa Murray 

    Prefer Thatcher to Salmond… I think i saw that quote attributed to Brian Harris Tweed Wilson too.

    The Tories…just the fact of seeing those Twiiter feeds makes me sigh. Hashtag Team Tory..Hashtag Gies Peace more like… You can see them all in a room with a brainstorming Guru like someone out of The Thick of It saying “ok…Social Media…thats where its at! Cool for Cats! Rock on Ruthie!”.

    Oblivion awaits. Doesnt matter how many rats are clinging to a sinking ship or what colour their skin is, eventually, theyre all gonna sink!

    Team Tory…

  17. panda paws says:

      Malky 113 said  Mike Watson- I wonder what became of him!
    I believe he went on to become an interior design critic…
    I was surprised at the size of the majority Labour obtained rather than them winning but it has heehaw to do with the referendum. I’m hearing that 50% of the Labour vote when asked on the doorstep said they would vote yes in the referendum. If I were the No campaign that would give me pause (rather than paws)!

  18. pa_broon74 says:

    I think, as you would do with young children, the Conservatives were just coddling their candidate. I mean, if they’d been honest with poor wee jimmy and told him just how crap he was, firstly he’d burst into tears (being only 12 years old) then he’d probably phone childline, the last thing the Tories need is social work at the door.
    What? He’s 22? Shut up!
    I think with the Tory party in Scotland, it really is the small things, in this instance, the number of votes they got.

  19. desimond says: you retweet Ruth a lot?

    Was there a comment added on this instance?

  20. Luigi says:

    Why shouldn’t the blue tories be happy?  The red tory candidate just won for the unionists.  Queen and country have been saved.  This is Better Together in all its glory – just ask Flipper.

  21. Jon D says:

    “Yet another example of the “driver, engineer and signalman of the gravy train” working in harmony to ensure the boilers are stoked, the lines are greased and the signals are at green for a smooth run to the Westminster terminal.Where exactly is the democracy in this cabal?”

    So worthy of a repost. Watch all the coaches of this train coalesce into one next year before crashing into the buffers on 18 September 2014.

  22. Juteman says:

    Ella said, “I don’t see much in this tactical voting stuff. I wouldn’t vote Labour in Westminster elections just to keep the Tories out even though that would be the most logical way to do it. i would stick to voting for what ever party I actually believed had the best policy and the candidate I liked. Maybe I’m underestimating the hatred for the SNP though.”
    I vote SNP, though not a member. If I thought an Indy party like The Greens or the SSP had a better chance of winning, i’d vote for them.

  23. Illy says:

    I guess the attitude of “we don’t care who wins, as long as they’re a pro-union party” really shows how scared they are that Scotland will go independant.
    I’ll take that as a good sign.

  24. Atypical_Scot says:

    O/T and back to Grangemouth. Is the new gas terminal that’s got the green light, the ethane terminal for fracking in Scotland? 

  25. Doug Daniel says:

    Ronald – “On that subject another dismal result for The Green Party. Two successive by-elections where UKIP have beaten them.”
    In fairness, the Greens – having decided not to field any constituency candidates in 2011 – are starting from nothing. And they’re still very much marginalised by the media (although it was a welcome change to see Newsnicht having all available candidates in their debate this week). On the other hand, UKIP have a leader who is on TV every other week thanks to BBC’s efforts to promote UKIP, and who knows, there may even be some pro-indy-but-anti-EU folk lending their votes to UKIP.
    It would be interesting to see how a Green candidate fared in an Edinburgh or Glasgow by-election.

  26. Papadocx says:

    The Tories would be quite relaxed if a communist win  provided they were unionist! (Conservative &unionist party). They have ruled the roost for the past 300 years. They bought Scotland by bribing the Scottish parliament and have no intention of letting us go. Why! if we are such an albatross  round their neck. Altruism or power and  control,

  27. Illy says:

    On that note, does anyone have any ideas why the BBC is promoting UKIP so much?  If the SNP got that grade of support we’d be laughing the yes vote off as unnessecary.

  28. Les Wilson says:

    This comment on “maybe hatred of the SNP “, let us just remember this was again a concerted effort by ALL unionist parties preaching about Scottish Independence, all lot of scaremongering to (a) their usual supporters AND to the uninformed ”

    I include the with the last comment, those who cannot be bothered thinking and just believe everything, some mealy mouth tells them, their get out is “my family always vote labour!” enough said.

    We must not forget also the dirty tricks labour and their Unionist buddies get up to they were there to see if voters had bothered to look. 
    For September 2014, we need to be more streetwise and much more assertive, we have the best ammo, let’s indulge our brains and use it, every way we can.

  29. Andy-B says:

    Ba Humbug, losing Dunfermline leaves a bitter taste in the mouth, what next for the ancient capital of Scotland, red,white and blue kerb stones.
    Or maybe broken green lights at pedestrian crossings.
    I see Johan lamont has crawled out of her bunker to laud, SLAB’s so called “Dynamic victory” in Dunfermline, Hail Caesar, roll on the Ides of March.

  30. Willie Zwigerland says:

    UKIP got nearly double the vote of the SNP at the last election.

  31. G H Graham says:

    The British Establishment is talking & no matter which Westminster Party achieved what last night, the only thing that appears to have mattered to any/all of them is that the SNP didn’t win. The media appears to be equally as jubilant that a seat has been lost to Labour, regardless of what their ideological position is.
    The only other states that I am aware of that such a brainwashed consensus exists amongst the media & the Establishment is in countries like North Korea or China. One might argue then that the British Empire is alive & well all across Scotland because its spirit is still pouring out of the hearts & souls of die hard Royalists & Unionists in every village, town & city.
    Revolutions & the consequential violence that ensues have emaciated societies for much flimsier reasons than this.

  32. liz says:

    Agreed @Les Wilson – the conservatives know they are finished in Scotland but if the SLAB stay in control in Scotland, they will concentrate on middle England and it still gives them control of all our resources.
    Just spoken to someone who thought that Grangemouth would work against independence, of course I disagreed and said we need to get control of our resources.
    Of course the dreaded beeb are partially to blame as they will give the SG no credit.
    Apologies for calling some voters thick on previous thread – it was a long night.

  33. Spout says:

    Break the grip of the Westminster Duopoly on our lives…
    Vote Yes !

  34. The Man in the Jar says:

    “Yet another example of the “driver, engineer and signalman of the gravy train” working in harmony to ensure the boilers are stoked, the lines are greased and the signals are at green for a smooth run to the Westminster terminal.Where exactly is the democracy in this cabal?”
    I wish that they would do exactly that. With the tracks greased hopefully the gravy train would hit the buffers at Westminster and end up in one almighty train wreck. 😉

  35. proudscot says:

    To mis-paraphrase Orwell’s Animal Farm, “The Unionist creatures outside looked from Ruth to Johann, and from Johann to Ruth, and from Ruth to Johann again, but already it was impossible to say which was which!”

  36. Peter Johnston says:

    There is now two parties in Scotland, SNP and Westminster.

  37. Andy-B says:

    O/T Rev, I do apologise.
    Today see’s the launch, of a tough new regulator, for the press, apparently, the toughest in the western world, if its to be believed.
    The Independent Press Standards Organisation or (IPSO), will be up and running early next year, and promises to guarantee, a higher standard of journalism.
    According to IPSO, tough sanctions, upfront corrections, investigative powers and many other imposing policies are on the cards.
    Have a read for yourself.

  38. David Smillie says:

    I have met one communist who is virulently unionist and a dedicated Celtic supporter.  As such, he hates being called a unionist but has to concede that that’s exactly what he is.  His stated reasons for opposing independence?  – Alex Salmond is a dictator and he hates him.  Nicola Sturgeon is a ‘poison dwarf’.  You can see the deeply intellectual Marxist basis of his arguments.

  39. scottish_skier says:

    UKIP got nearly double the vote of the SNP at the last election.
    Yep. Farage is a one man case for Scottish independence.

  40. G. Campbell says:

    This didn’t happen.

    “Aaaaaagh! Taken. Get Davidson on the phone now. I’m thinking ‘Reekie_James’ might work.”

    “F*** you, Ruth. F*** you, twitter. F*** you, 1. F*** you all forever.”

  41. Juteman says:

    We are taking on the British State here. Some folk don’t seem to realise this. This isn’t an election.
    During a war for a country, and this is a ‘cold’ war, the enemy don’t care if the artillery or the navy win a particular battle.

  42. Juteman says:

    Anyone read ‘Mountain days and bothy nights’?
    There are characters in the book who are Communist Party members of the Orange Order!
    A great book.

  43. HandandShrimp says:

    It doesn’t matter who you vote for as long as Westminster gets in.
    As far as the Tories are concerned, I think when you are in the gutter even a a kerb looks like the mountain tops.  

  44. HandandShrimp says:

    UKIP got nearly double the vote of the SNP at the last election.
    Not in Scotland they didn’t – what happened in foreign lands is entirely their affair

  45. Cath says:

    “I vote SNP, though not a member. If I thought an Indy party like The Greens or the SSP had a better chance of winning, i’d vote for them.”
    This is what’s a shame about these elections. It’s bad with all elections, but even more so with the added independence stuff.
    As a first choice, if I’d been voting in Dunfermline I’d have voted Green. But I know that if I was really there, the knowledge a Labour win would be used this way would have meant I’d feel I had to vote SNP. That’s a real shame for the Green candidate, who was the best and offered something genuinely different.

  46. Papadocx says:

    Juteman 4:44
    Spot on: The only mistake is by not learning by our mistakes. So pick ourselves up and carry on using the lessons we have been given. He’ll it’s hard, but how important is it? 

  47. joe kane says:

    Former Iraqi Information Minister, Comical Ali, has sent a message congratulating the invicible Scottish Tories on achieving yet another historic result.

  48. Embradon says:

    “O/T and back to Grangemouth. Is the new gas terminal that’s got the green light, the ethane terminal for fracking in Scotland? “
    On the face of it, the new facility is apparently to allow gas from US to be imported.

  49. JasonF says:

    As Stuart pointed out on Twitter, BBC (R4) trying to get Salmond to say it was Westminster that was able to save the day. Meanwhile, on BBC News, Carmichael is allowed to say what he wants (about working together and having a dig at the referendum getting in the way at other times) without any hard questioning – he could have been asked (or told, if in the style of R4 questioning) about an independent Scotland being able to give a loan guarantee.

  50. macdoc says:

    We are taking on the British State here. Some folk don’t seem to realise this. This isn’t an election.During a war for a country, and this is a ‘cold’ war, the enemy don’t care if the artillery or the navy win a particular battle

    Exactly I remember hearing someone say Alex Salmond will play Braveheart before the referendum to try and brainwash us (In all seriousness) . There’s two things wrong with this the most obvious is that Braveheart is NOT the reason 99.99% of the Yes supporters are voting for independence.
    The second and more important point is that even if Alex Salmond wanted to play Braveheart he can’t influence anything that is played on Scottish screens. The reason is that the media isn’t devolved and therefore whats played and what is Broadcast is what the British want us to see. This begs the question of how little the average voter in Scotland understands about the current arrangement and just how little the power the Scottish parliament has. 
    Can you imagine if the Scottish government could influence Broadcasting. Every voter in Scotland would become aware of the huge wealth inequalities of the UK in comparison to other developed nations. There would be constant mentions of the fact Scotland subsidizes the rest of the UK and being in a union keeps us poorer without the ability to grow our economy with our limited  powers. There wouldn’t be any need for a referendum. I don’t want propaganda I just want fair facts. If only……

  51. Ken MacColl says:

    I remember the late Donald Stewart, for part of his time the sole representative of the SNP in the Commons,  commenting on the demise of the Scottish (sic) Tories many years ago when he likened them to the American bison
    “Occasionally you may come across a small group of them grazing in a secluded hollow although this is unlikely to include a breeding pair but I am pleased to report that the days of the thundering herds are gone for ever” 
    How low has their ambition sunk!

  52. @lly 
    On that note, does anyone have any ideas why the BBC is promoting UKIP so much?  If the SNP got that grade of support we’d be laughing the yes vote off as unnessecary.

    To dilute the Tory vote to aid there red team.

  53. Les Calthorps. says:

    completely o/t
    I see labour appear to have found a new source of brown envelopes!!
    After the tram fiasco in Edinburgh they are now proposing inflicting the same upheaval on my good friends in Aberdeen.

  54. creag an tuirc says:

    OT: The Rev is dropping some hints over on twitter about Wings second poll. Cannae wait.

  55. Marcia says:

    To crow about your support when you get only over 7% does show how low the Tory expectations are.

  56. handclapping says:

    Just a wee something missed.
    For the Council elections if the last sitting councillor was not actually in the Labour party at the calling of the election, the BBC had it that it was a win for Labour.
    Now, even though Bill Walker had been thrown out of the SNP for more than a year, Dunfermiline is a loss by the SNP.
    Thank heavens we can rely on the BBC 🙁

  57. Andy-B says:

    @Ken McColl.
    Interestingly about the bison/buffalo.
    It was a Scot who saved them from extinction, a man by the name of, James “Scotty” Philip.
    In 1899, he purchased 74 of the animals for conservation purposes, by the time of his death in 1911, the herd numbered over one thousand.
    James “Scotty” Philip’s herd of one thousand,was a turning point in the survival of the bison/buffalo in the USA.


  58. turnip_ghost says:

    Apologies for going off topic but I found this very interesting on the BBC website..

    And look at the top countries…All those small nordic countries….Someone should tell them they are too wee!! I wonder how the individual nations of the UK fare against each other/internationally

  59. Juteman says:

    I can’t believe what I’ve just heard. The STV news presenter has just said that the plant was only saved by the intervention of UK ministers!

    Norman wotsisname?

  60. Ken MacColl says:

    Surely you are not suggesting that we should set up a breeding colony of Tories to compete with the Pandas?

  61. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Willie Zwigerland 
    UKIP got nearly double the vote of the SNP at the last election.
    What are you slavering about?
    Justify please?

  62. Les Calthorps. says:

    Awaiting moderation indeed——I have never been so insulted since the time I was banned sine die  by NNS for making a crack about how much wind it would take to blow the labour councillors out of the City Chambers in Glasgow following the Mathieson scandal.
    A toffee apple to the reader who provides the correct answer to what I said at that time.

  63. pmcrek says:

    To be honest I think it was a credible result for a 14 year old.

  64. pmcrek says:

    Bugger the panda,
    He’s pointing out that the SNP dont stand candidates in England.

  65. Andy-B says:

    @Ken macColl.
    Ha ha ha  no not at all.
    The Tory name in Scotland, when independence is gained (Fingers crossed)
    will suffer the same fate as the Dodo, Passenger Pigeon, Great Auk, and my favourite the Quagga.
    Though Im pretty sure they’ll re-invent themselves with a less toxic brand name.

  66. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Are we talking rhetoric here?
    If so, I demur.

  67. Brian Powell says:

    So, BBC must be supporting Labour, and STV supporting the ConLibs!
    Only the people supporting Independence.

  68. velofello says:

    Question: Would you employ that person for your business? Not an  reasonable basics survival question? 
    The Green, SNP and Tory candidates, based upon TV appearances, seemed to me worth a job offer.So why was the Labour candidate elected? Party policies? Come on folks,which one would you like?  

  69. pmcrek says:

    Bugger the Panda,
    Presumably so, might also be worth pointing out that during the Iraq presidential election of 2002 Saddam Hussein achieved a staggering 11,445,638 more votes than the SNP also.

    They were all postal tho 😉

  70. Arturo says:

    O/T slightly.
    BBC website is reporting the Labour win as a gain from the SNP,  but Bill Walker was an independent MSP at the time he resigned. During the council elections, Glasgow was reported as a Labour gain – because several Labour councillors had become independents.
    I had a discussion via email with BBC online about the council reporting, and they said their official position is they report the change as the position at the time the election was called.
    I’ve been in touch with them again, but they haven’t explained why they have changed their policy this time.

  71. Kevin Lynch says:

    Personally I think they’re happy they didn’t lose their deposit.

  72. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    smiley thingey double plus good.
    I wonder if the postal vote was stencilled, envoloped and posted well in advance of the poll and that gave a certain side a levened position as a base one?
    I am thinking serious voter fraud BUT within West Minster rules?

  73. Jim Mitchell says:

    Some of those unionist who post rubbish are now saying ABAS=anybody but Alex Salmond.
    All those pats on the back between Tories and Labour, i wonder what the Maxtons and Mcleans etc would have thought?

  74. Piemonteis  is correct
     What worries the Tories, who are mostly concerned with the UK picture, is UKIP –  as UKIP failed again to keep their deposit, and the Tory vote held up, it’s job done for them.

  75. john king says:

    Atypical scot says
    “O/T and back to Grangemouth. Is the new gas terminal that’s got the green light, the ethane terminal for fracking in Scotland?”

    No its for shipping in shale gas from the US 

  76. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    I would think probably.
    BTW I have received an e-mail surposedy from Observor 666. It is someone I knew a long time ago and obviously that e-mail account has been hacked.
    I see you may be on that list.

  77. john king says:

    Wllie Zwigerland says
    “UKIP got nearly double the vote of the SNP at the last election.”

    Really? where was I when that happened?
    maybe your thinking about another country Willie?
    last time I checked ukip got their arse handed to them in SCOTLAND

  78. john king says:

    Got the warning Btp 
    thanks for the heads up

  79. Ken500 says:

    It cost UKIP £1,700 for every vote they got in Aberdeen, by-election. Just as well they didn’t get very many.

    Fradge obtains £million+ from EU membership. The Party is funded from EU taxpayers money is funding UKIP.

    Why are the Postal votes not checked. 8000? Postal votes. A sixth? of the electorate. Is everyone sick or gone on holiday in the CONstituency.

  80. The Rough Bounds says:

    Effing Labour and thick effing Dunfermline wankers. I don’t really know what else to do that will make those plonkers (I won’t call them Scots; they don’t merit that) wake up and smell the coffee.

    Mr. Salmond truly burned the midnight oil trying to keep Ineos from shutting up shop. His work was Homeric and he ought to be getting lauded from the rooftops.

    All the thanks he gets from the dicks in Dunfermline is two fingers and a sneer.
    Let’s make it a policy commitment to change the name of Dunfermline to Twat town.

  81. Another Union Dividend says:

    Sorry disappoint the conspricency theorists but problem for SNP is that Labour is much better organised on Postal Votes than the SNP particularly when they kniw a by election MIGHT BE pending.

  82. Kev says:

    The only real positive to come out of yesterdays result is that Labour will feel their policy of treating the electorate like ignorant fools and trying to get away with it has worked again and so will continue with this tactic all the way to the referendum.
    Thing is they fail to realise that most of the votes they got last nite were purely down  to people’s sense of duty to their labour-voting parents or a stubborn continuation of their own voting habits over the decades and very little to do with the candidate herself and her policies (afterall SHE didn’t even know what they were!) It was also due to the election being run over a short period of time, and consequently very little time for the real facts to get out, but obv enough time for plenty of labour soundbites to be spouted by the MSM.. 
    Few of these things apply next year – its a referendum not an election, people will be voting for a cause, not a party, the MSM negativity is already wearing thin on folk, and theyl have to watch what they say come the end of May. As for loyalty, well, there are far more Scots loyal to Labour than loyal to the union, and if they are unwilling to listen to the “reasons” to vote for Labour then they are far less likely to listen to reasons for sustaining the union…So despite last night’s result I have very good vibes about September next year..

  83. Daughter of Evil Reindeer says:

     Labour postal vote fraud! Just Google it!
    Going to get it on a t-shirt.

  84. Another Union Dividend says:

    Daughter of Evil Reindeer says
    Yes Labour supporters have been guilty on this in many instances.
    But at the risk of being called racist the vast majority of Postal Vote fraud outside Northern Ireland occur amonst constituencies with large Asian elctorate and registration officers have difficulty working out which are genuine.      

    This does not apply in Glenrothes and Dunfermline where the SNP have been pretty weak in organisational terms compared to Dundee and North East etc.
    You can get way with this in national elections but not in bye elections.

  85. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Another Union Dividend
    I would question your certainty.
    The returning officer at Glenrothes was so overwhelmed by postal votes that he only checked one in six for veracity and even then he disallowed several hundred.
    It was pretty apparent that many postal vote applications and actual postal votes did not have matching signatures. Our present postal voting system is a  recipe for fraud
    Then they “lost” all the voting records (which had been deposited for public access at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court!). Any notion that our opponents won’t break all the rules is very naive indeed. Postal voting fraud is the least they will do.
    The PF had a huge number of personation suspicions put in front of him at M. Sarwar’s first election but decided not to proceed. 
    There have been successful prosecutions in England over electoral fraud and most if not all have involved the Labour Party. I would ask to see all the postal votes from Dunfermline

  86. Daughter of Evil Reindeer says:

    I would like us to see them too, then we know it’s all straight.

  87. Oh MacOo says:

    Aye brilliant, 84 fewer less Tories in Jockoland, congrats Tories 

  88. Another Union Dividend says:

    Daughter  & Dave
    I am not so naive to think that Labour will not resort to any such  tactics. 

    But Glasgow North East report says ” The commission found that of the 1780 postal votes that were handed in with just three days to go to the deadline almost half were handed in by the Labour party”.  So Labour were, unfortunately, the most popular party so logically they would have had half of the postal votes.

    Re Glenrothes are you suggesting that the council staff which examined the postal votes were corrupt and in any event the SNP election agent  should have contested each of these postal votes as the returning officer is obliged to refer any doubtful vote but I agree that the subsequent disappearance of the voting records was a matter of concern.

    My main point is that the SNP has to get its act together regarding postal votes before the referendum.

  89. Daughter of Evil Reindeer says:

    “So Labour were, unfortunately, the most popular party so logically they would have had half of the postal votes.”

    Probably rather than logically the case but this is not what the commission was looking at.

    If you read all of the article…
    The commission also highlighted the number of people on the electoral register who were known not to be resident at the address given…

    Dave seems to be stating what happened.

    “My main point is that the SNP has to get its act together regarding postal votes before the referendum.”

    Do you mean that the SNP should do this for by-elections prior to the referendum or for the referendum itself. In which case will it be the responsibility of he SNP to do this? Or do you mean that the SNP administration should legislate on the postal voting shambles.

  90. ScottishThinker says:

    “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” 

  91. Ken500 says:

    Would someone explain how a canvasser can go around with postal votes forms?, signing up postal voters?

    Do voters who want a postal vote, not have to get the council to send the form out and then the voter fills it in and sends it back.

    How does postal voting work. It seems 1/3 of the voters are going on holiday or are sick. Half of the CONstituecy must be empty.

    How can unelected would-be- politicians be tweeting get the postal votes out/in? Blogging on behalf of a fraudulent Lord, first every time on the comment section aided by a complicit Right wing Press. Fifi La Bon. MSM want freedom of speech for themselves, but want to censor everyone else.

    Are postal votes not examined by the authorities.

    Anyone (gender positive) can get an electoral card and go into a booth and vote fraudulently. There is no requirement for positive ID. Maybe Brown wanted ID cards so fraudulent Political Parties couldn’t commit Electoral Fraud. The irony.

  92. Ken500 says:

    Are the Unionists complicit with the Council authorities/Police authorities/Crown prosecution Service, in denial that Postal fraud is happening.

    What happens now the Royal Mail is privatised?. Are postal votes going to be sent out without scrutiny?

    There are reports that once Postal voters are signed up, they can continue, indefinitely. Very strange. With turnouts now averaging 40% or less. The Elections are turning into a Postal vote election. Not what was envisaged by the Representation of the People’s Act.

    Democracy in Scotland has been destroyed by the unequal Union.

  93. Adrian B says:

    About postal votes from The Electoral Commission:

  94. Ken500 says:

    A majority of the electorate in the UK are ill. Sick of Westminster governance.

  95. Ken500 says:

    Postal Voting is open for fraud and is not democratic. It is an abuse of the Democratic system with no checks or balances.

    Only those who are sick or on holiday, working away etc. A Postal vote only be given with proof of requirement ie Doctor’s line, employers/travel documentation.

    It’s a total scandal and abuse of Democracy. The electoral system rules should be tightened up.

    Some people were denied a genuine request for a postal vote – going on holiday – when Douglas Alexander organised an Election. The council did not receive the Postal voting form in time. Disenfranchising voters. The forms are obviously circulation rather freely, to put it mildly, in the Central Belt.

  96. Ken500 says:

    ‘Don’t hand it to a Candidate or party worker, unless there is no other way practical’

    What is going on?

    Signing up voters on the doorstep?

  97. Ken500 says:

    ‘A Postal vote can be sent to your address, or any other address that you give’.

  98. Ken500 says:

    Many people are very plausible and can be easily manipulated on the doorstep. Especially those who don’t clearly understand the issues.

    Unscrutinised Postal voting is open to fraud.

    A controlled, clique of UK MSM want ‘freedom of speech’ for themselves, but not for others.

  99. Brian Powell says:

    On postal vote fraud and th e Glenrothes byelection. The electoral registers, which are meant to be kept for a year for inspection, disappeared. Losing the registers is a serious offence, carrying a fine of several thousand punds, no matter what the reason.
    . However for some reason no one was fined or held responsible.

  100. Ken500 says:

    The unscrutinised Postal Vote system could be used for identity fraud.

    Glenrothes by-election should have been declared null and void and a new election should been called. If 8000 votes, which decided the outcome were lost, and could not be scrutinised. It is a fraudulent election.

  101. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    The SNP did not complain.
    I found that to be odd.

  102. Ken500 says:

    Trade Unions and Better Together have been sending out e-mails in breach of Election campaign rules , to influence the Scottish elections and exceed the Campaign finance limits. These Elections are null and void. It is illegal. Better Together have been sending out e-mails telling voters to vote Unionist. (No included in Electoral expenses). Unionists have been sending out e-mails telling their members to Vote Labour (No included in Electoral expenses).

    It is Gerrymandering and against Parliamentary rulesv for Interest Groups to try and sway Elections. It is illegal. These Organisations should be sanctioned and fined. Proven illegal activity on the part of an individual carries a prison sentence.

    Are these organisations/interest Groups above the Law. Corrupt Westminster, Corrupt Police, Corrupt MSM, Corrupt UK Political Parties, Corrupt surveillance Organisation etc All above the Laws that they make. The UK is corrupt.

  103. Molly says:

    I suggested yesterday a petition to the Electoral Commision, to have all postal votes returned to somewhere like the Electoral Commision or somewhere neutral (out with each constituency) but don’t know how to start a petition on line. I would certainly be quite happy to go out with a clip board and ask folk to sign it , even if it only made the public more aware.

    its not that I don’t trust the people who do the counting but the system is too open to abuse.Anyone agree?

  104. Brian Powell says:

    The organisation 38Degrees, has on-line petitions to lobby the Westminster Government, MPs,  over policies concerning the NHS(England) and the gagging laws.
    They, on their website, invite people to start their own petition on matters of concern. They have experts who will advice on how best to put forward a petition, its form etc.
    Typically the get numbers of 1oo,ooo upwards signing petitions. Through contributions they have employed lawyers to put together legal arguments. All this is people based.

  105. Molly says:

    Thanks Brian. I’ll look into that .When you think about it something as simple as making the postal voting card a different colour could mean the amount sent out could be counted against the amount returned.
    i remember someone said at the last Referendum even some dead people managed to vote.

  106. Brian Powell says:

    I seem to remember that as part of the Edinburgh Agreement on the Referendum the Scottish Government included the right to organise the Vote. So they may already have a few controls involved. As it is not a General Election there could be different conditions in place.

  107. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Another Union Dividend at 11.06
    No I’m not suggesting at all that any council staff were guilty of anything. They disqualified any doubtful postal votes as was their duty.
    At the Glasgow election you referred to a number of voters turned up to the polls to vote to discover that they had already registered a postal vote that theywere unaware of

  108. lumilumi says:

    What I know of the UK postal voting system, I think it’s appalling. Too easily abused. For instance, political party campaigners should not be let anywhere near the forms, offering to return them on the voter’s behalf!
    In Finland, there’s what we call “advance voting”. It usually starts two weeks before the actual polling day and lasts ten days. During that period you can go to any advance polling station anywhere in the country. It used to be only post offices but now it’s mostly schools, libraries, even shopping malls. There you present photo ID (driving licence, passport, NI card, EU identity card – only the NI card is something everybody will have but most use driving licences) to the polling officials, get your ballot card, go to the booth, mark it, seal it in an envelope, which is then stamped by the official, enclose it a larger envelope with an accompanying slip that states what constituency you are actually voting in & your signature, seal the larger envelope and drop it in the ballot box.
    On the polling day (always a Sunday) you can only vote at your local polling station (usually the local school). Present ID, sign the electoral register, get ballot card, mark it, have it stamped, drop in ballot box. You will not be allowed to vote if you’ve voted in advance. Nowadays about a third vote in advance.
    They begin counting the advance votes before the polling stations close. A friend of mine has worked at a counting centre and the first hour or two are spent opening the large envelopes and sorting the (still sealed) smaller envelopes with the actual vote according to constituency/ward (given in the accompanying slip). In GEs there are 15 multi-member constituencies, in local elections the whole council area is all one constituency, in presidential and EU elections the whole country is one constituency, but they still sort votes along regional/GE constituency/ward lines. Presumably to produce figures on turnout, party shares etc. for the boffins at the Ministry of Justice/Electoral Commission/press – and us anoraks! All the figures (advance and polling day) are published the next day by the Electoral Commission, except in cases when the number of voters is very small and especially voters for a particular party are very small. (For obvious reasons: imagine a mostly centrist/rightist constituency and two votes for the Left Alliance, that’d be those commies, Mr & Mrs Virtanen!)
    Next in the advance vote counting centres, the accompanying slips are put aside but kept for verification purposes, should any anomalies arise.
    Then they start opening the envelopes with the actual ballot card, spend an hour doing so… Then they actually count the vote. There are mountains of discarded envelopes but it can’t be bad for the Finnish paper industry! 😀
    The first results from the advance vote start coming in soon after the polling stations close at 8pm, and because so many vote in advance (about a third), YLE (our national broadcaster) are able to give a fairly accurate prediction by 9.00 or 9.30pm (adjusted for less populous areas’ votes being counted first, voters of some parties being more active in advance/polling day vote etc.).
    The count is all done and dusted by midnight, even earlier, so “Election Night Specials” on TV aren’t all they used to be when I first got my vote in the late 1980s. Back then they could go on till 2 or 3am. You could always tell at what stage the count was by looking at the YLE guy in the studio. He started with jacket and tie. First the jacket came off, then the tie, then the shirt sleeves rolled up… Now the new guy barely has time to remove his jacket! 😀
    All this, of course, only works because Finland has a very up-to-date electoral register, or actually a general population register. When you move, you’re required by law to notify the post office of your new address and whether it’s temporary or permanent, and this information is then shared across public adminstration. It might sound a bit Orwellian to UK people but we’re used to it, accurate population registers were first introduced by the Swedish (and Finnish) king Gustav Wasa in the 15th century during the Reformation (because he wanted to grab the Church’s taxes for his own treasury.)
    And having a central population register saves a lot of hassle because you don’t have to register with this, that and the other official/authority separately. Health, social, education, voting, tax etc., even vehicle reg!
    Sorry, I’ve written another essay. 🙁 I’m just so appalled by the UK postal vote system that I wanted to tell about a diffeent way of doing things.

  109. lumilumi says:

    To add to the essay above:
    If someone really, really cannot get in person to an advance polling station during the ten days or so, or their own polling station on polling day, they can apply for “home vote”. The election officials (not any political party campaigners!) come to your house with a “mobile polling booth” and the procedure is the same as for other advance voting. Some hospitals and nursing homes even have these mobile polling stations come in, going from ward to ward.

  110. To me it reads like I have been saying for the past couple of years,its the “Westminster Party” that won,because Lib-Dems,Labour & Tory are just aliases for the Westminster party.I think that they hate the idea that they may lose Scotland to DEMOCRACY,and then the rest of the UK would realise that Westminster has never been a democracy.Cant have democracy in a monarchy in any case.

  111. lumilumi says:

    @Charles Patric O’Brien
    Sweden is a pretty democratic country, no? Or Norway? Or Denmark?
    They all have proportional representation election systems at all levels of government (local/regional/national). They all also have “constitutional monarchies”, a system that the UK also has. The monarch doesn’t have any real political power, is actually by law excluded from any politics. So they’re just figureheads, symbols of nation, continuity. Celebrities and tourist bait.
    The Nordic royal families are quite popular in their respective countries. Hell, Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria is hugely popular even in Finland (a republic).
    Constitutional monarchy isn’t the problem.
    The problem is the deeply undemocratic FPTP system. It encourages two main parties with little chance for a third, let alone fourth, fifth, sixth… party. It also encourages overly confrontational politics, in stead of cross-party consensus for the best of the country.
    And as the two main UK parties have lost any direction or ideology they originally might have had (UK Labour, I’m especially looking at you), all they do is spin, spin and spin for the most votes. The Tories, Libs and Labs are all essentially the same party. All focussed on Westminster power, never mind the people they’re supposed to represent. At least people in Scotland have a meaningful vote against all that in the SNP and the smaller parties.
    And what about the House of Lords? It was undemocratic when people got there by birth, but the present system of political parties rewarding their party faithful by “elevating” them to a “noble” title and a life seat in the legislative assembly of a country? That’s almost more undemocratic! It’s a travesty of democracy.
    The UK political system is broken, it’s almost back to where it was 200 years ago with personal wealth and patronage the deciding factors. Party faithfuls parachuted into “safe” seats (I heat Tony Blair’s son Euan is looking for a “safe” Labour seat…)
    I think the utmost irony is that the UK boasts that it’s got the “Mother of all Parliaments” and the US prides itself in being the most “democratic” and “free” country in the world. When both of them are basically flawed, undemocratic countries where patronage and money buys power.

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