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Drip, drip, drip

Posted on August 25, 2013 by

This site spends much of its time highlighting major outbreaks of misrepresentation, spin, distortion and outright lying in the Scottish and UK media. Readers will be aware that we very rarely find ourselves short of material.

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Which means that we don’t often have time to report the small stuff.

The image above comes from a ridiculous piece from the Herald on 23 August. Nobody has asked for or suggested a UK-wide currency union using the Euro. The entire premise of the article is completely false and frankly mad.

And it’s not a simple typo, because it’s hardly a “huge step” to take the UK into a Sterling currency union with Scotland – that’s the situation we’re already in right now, the Scottish/rUK economies are so similar it’d make no tangible difference to anything, and the idea of giving voters a referendum on an arcane financial technicality almost none of them would understand or care about is farcical.

But the Euro is highly unpopular, so the “mistake” goes uncorrected.

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Buried in a small corner of page 2 of the same day’s Daily Record was this mention of the Yes Scotland hacking scandal, which is of little interest to tabloid readers. But wait a minute – since when was Dr Bulmer “supposedly impartial”? He’s an open advocate of Scottish independence and has been for years. The article he wrote for the Herald made no claims of neutrality.

But the words “supposedly impartial” convey – subtly, concisely and therefore memorably – the message that something wrong has been done, covered up and then shamingly revealed. That message is completely untrue.

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The Herald again, on Saturday 24th. Tom Shields’ column is a comedy one, and the rest of it is made up of jokes. But the premise the jokes are built around, reinforced in the crucial first line, is an absolute lie. The Herald has told its readers for two days running that Scotland’s new unified police force is engaged in a massive increase in the questionable practice of stop-and-search, when in fact the exact opposite appears to the case.

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Also from Saturday is this mostly reasonable Guardian feature from Steve Richards, playing role of the curious outside observer in Scotland. But lurking bizarrely right in the middle of it is an assertion so stupefyingly at odds with reality that it’s difficult to see how a professional journalist could have arrived at it in error.

The use of “declaration” singular, rather than “declarations from each of the three main party leaders” is a particularly interesting one, suggesting a formal official pledge that’s never come within a thousand miles of being made.

(Nested inside the paragraph is another intriguing little quirk – the phrase “three main party leaders”. Who does Richards actually mean by that? Lamont, Davidson and Rennie, or Cameron, Clegg and Miliband? Because the latter three have certainly never stated any backing for additional powers, let alone “devo max”, but calling the former three the “main party leaders” in Scotland would have a fairly obvious flaw.)

We could list examples all day. The one from Steve Richards is perhaps more excusable than the others, because it’s a conclusion anyone could arrive at from reading the Scottish media. We’ve picked up on it many times before, and the lie that the three Westminster parties are committed to more devolution is so common in the Scottish press that we had to devote an entire tag to it.

What we’ve given you is just a tiny flavour of a phenomenon that permeates every newspaper page and every broadcast to the Scottish public every day. Untruths are repeated casually, not as the main story but as part of a backdrop of general misinformation. We’ve gone easy on it in the past. Maybe it’s time we stopped.

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    97 to “Drip, drip, drip”

    1. scottish_skier says:

      It’s because No is losing. The more they fall behind, the worse this will get, causing them to fall behind even further and so on…

    2. Taranaich says:

      Eat, sleep and crap, for to prey on your needs
      Down a dark street in backwater Leeds
      I seen you’re comin, come in, lads!
      You seen the ad? Too bad, bad, bad
      What you get is what you see
      It’s a trickledown theory and it’s coming to me
      Life’s a whip-round and I’ve got the whip
      It’s a sinking ship, drip, drip, drip

      Drip, drip, drip goes the water…Drip, drip, drip goes the water…
      Drip, drip, drip goes the water…Drip, drip, drip goes the water…
      Take me in, throw me out, put me up, let me down…

    3. big_al says:

      It’s time we stopped.

    4. Atypical_Scot says:

      Whilst in agreement with everything in the article, the first snippet has a more arresting interest. There have been calls in the US for investors to sell out of the pound and move to the euro. Also, Osborne is set to set to break the bank once again this year, already borrowing £39 billion in the first (and always the strongest) quarter of 2013 and in the red despite the tax receipts. I am 95% sure the pound will lose a notable international value by the end of 2014 – independence will have a major role – leading to the euro becoming stronger than GBP. The big money boys are already murmuring, I’m watching the conversion rates with interest. This apparent typo my be more Freudian than is first recognizable.  

    5. John says:

      Ironic isn’t it that even after the hacking the best they can find is a £100 payment to an academic. I wonder what you’d find if the same thing happened to Bitter & Twisted, and that’s even before you bring the Ian Taylor “donation”.

    6. Elle Bee says:

      It’s really worrying given how much faux scandal Better Together are trying to generate that the press are so keen to lap it up – or just make up their own lies.  Hopefully, all the negative nonsense will have the same effect on the no campaign that it had on Scottish Labour last time round.  I enjoyed this rundown of the weeks misadventures:

      http://athousandflowers.net/2013/08/24/top-5-silly-season-independence-related-irrelevancies/

    7. cath says:

      “I wonder what you’d find if the same thing happened to Bitter & Twisted,”
       
      Maybe we should crowd-source our own hacker? The media don’t seem to have much problem with it after all and I’m sure whatever revelations our hacker came up with, the media would give the same ratio of attention to those as to the fact we’d paid a hacker to illegally access Better Together’s systems.

    8. Lies is the only ammunition in their magazine to support the Union just like anything positive about independence is called voodoo nonsense.
       
      http://archive.is/kgtQD
       
      ‘Tory MSP Murdo Fraser said: “This paper sounds like classic voodoo economics;’
       
      No analysis whatsoever.

    9. benarmine says:

      It does play with one’s head though, reading and hearing such things and wondering if one is imagining it or being paranoid. Print and broadcast media are a disgrace and when we’ve won it’s going to be hard to forgive and I will certainly never forget.

    10. les wilson says:

      Well, I guess all who recognize these sneaky lies and misrepresentations are by now fuming over just how the MSM can be held responsible and held to account.
      We need a legitimate legal force of experts to assist in their exposure, and of course the European entity that oversees fairness in referendums. There is a petition being raised just now to raise the profile of that cause. I for one have signed it.
      While the SG, do not seem interested in such an idea, I would like to ask er why not? Please tell us why not ? and what alternatives do we have?
      Wings and others do a good job which we all appreciate, but we need more, we need legal backing to face what is being perpetrated against the Scottish people. 
      So let us get  this sorted, they cannot just get away with this, ie cheat us again!

    11. Seasick Dave says:

      Supposedly impartial…
       
      Hahaha!
       
      Slip him another 100 quid and he’ll fire off some crap about being Better Together.

    12. RSF says:

      It’s really worrying given how much faux scandal Better Together are trying to generate that the press are so keen to lap it up – or just make up their own lies.  Hopefully, all the negative nonsense will have the same effect on the no campaign that it had on Scottish Labour last time round.  A rundown of the weeks misadventures:
      http://athousandflowers.net/2013/08/24/top-5-silly-season-independence-related-irrelevancies/

    13. It’s nice to see Iraqi information minister Muhammad Saeed al-Sahhaf (Comical Ali) is alive and well and earning a living from the anti-Scotland media.

    14. HandandShrimp says:

      The hacking thing seems to be growing legs and arms. I would not be surprised if they are not already looking for a scapegoat over at Better Together to throw to the wolves to protect the upper echelons.
       
       

    15. Gordon SMith says:

      Interesting placement next to the Mugabe article – things to come?
       

    16. wee162 says:

      For anyone who’s been remotely following the Rangers debacle, are they aware of the Charlotte Fakeovers twitter account? For anyone unaware, there have been loads of documents released relating to the takeover by Craig Whyte, and subsequent shenanigans from Charles Green.
       
      Anyway, you won’t know about this if you follow the Scottish media. And the reason that journalists have been saying nothing about it according to them is that there is a feeling that the documents have been obtained illegally. So that kind of begs the question, why are they reporting on something blatantly obtained illegally when it comes to the Yes campaign…

    17. Murray McCallum says:

      You tend to get a drip, drip, drip before damns burst.
       
      The point made by Atypical_Scot about GBP and Euro speculation is good. Osborne and Alexander’s stated position on no currency union with an independent Scotland is totally ridiculous from rUK economic perspective. Sterling needs every possible asset backing it up and that includes an independent Scotland’s oil reserves and balance of payments surplus from other Scottish exports.

    18. Lanarkist says:

      Rev, I have often wondered about the conflagration of the political set up for UK and Scotland and mostly thought it was just shoddy, lazy journalism. The journalists themselves unable to see it or unaware that they participate in it but it becomes quite a useful tool in their Armoury when they decide to use it by design, helping confuse what the central claim is. The concept of Lucid dreaming comes to mind where they can start directing the confusion.

      “the three main party leaders” illustrates the difficulty the author has in moving his perception from London to Edinburgh even though he has been performing a political show at the Edinburgh Fringe, (doesn’t he have any contact with the Scottish view even during social downtime ?). He even states that he asks his audience at the top of the show for a show of hands from Scottish and English residents so that he can tailor his show to suit, so he is obviously aware of the differences, just unwilling to apply it to his article. He obviously has two versions of his show, shame he couldn’t print two versions of his article. The other obviously including the statement that Devo is not on the menu and a No vote might mean the diminution of powers at Holyrood.

      I would find it interesting to hear from anyone who had seen both versions of his stage show.
      Lanarkist

    19. Albalha says:

      Talking of drip, drip, drip. I’m listening to The Reunion on R4 (on the 1970’s Lib/Lab pact), anyway they’ve just touched on the 11 SNP members and the presenter Sue McGregor said ….ah, yes the ‘Scottish Nationalist Party’, does she really not know what it is called.
       

    20. Red squirrel says:

      There just aren’t enough hours in the day to refute all the accurate and misleading ani-independence claims. Continuing the positive message and putting down the most ludicrous scare stories is a better bet, otherwise we risk validating this garbage. Look on the bright side, it’s going to get much worse than this & I believe in the sense of folk to see it for what it is.

    21. southernscot says:

      For me this is the type of reporting that drove me to seek out a better more accurate source of information. That’s why I’m here!

    22. stramash says:

      The positioning of a picture of Robert Mugabe next to a story about the Yes campaign hacking isn’t very subtle either.

    23. Ron Maclean says:

      Drip, drip, drip could be applied to Mr. Angus Macleod, Scottish editor of The Times.  He has a slot on GMS most Saturdays giving us his take on the papers and politics.  Yesterday he used some of his time prolonging Bulmergate.  He didn’t declare any interest.  He didn’t tell us if he got a salary from the BBC or just a bung.  Perhaps I’m being unkind and we should be grateful to him for giving us his time so frequently.

    24. DougtheDug says:

      The Scottish press is unionist so for them to attack and put down the Yes campaign at every opportunity is not surprising. The problem is that the public believe and the papers pretend that they are impartial and the situation is compounded by the fact that there are no newspapers on the Yes side to provide balance. The same problem occurs with the broadcast media.
       
      Steve Richards’ article highlights another problem amongst journalists which becomes apparent in the reporting of the independence referendum especially from those in English based papers. They simply don’t check facts and seem to write their articles based on some form of received wisdom which is passed around the newsrooms.
       
      The most obvious examples are:
      The SNP wanted Devo-Max on the ballot paper as a fall-back option
      Cameron forced the SNP to accept a single question referendum
      The SNP never wanted an independence referendum in the first place
      Devo-max will be offered if Scotland votes No
      All the UK parties want to give Scotland more powers
      NATO has already rejected Scotland
      and finally,
      The EU has already rejected Scotland
       
      I’m not sure whether they are simply lazy or well, lazy.

    25. Linda's back says:

      Sunday Times reports 
       
      EMAIL accounts linked to the Yes Scotland campaign have been hacked for several months, sources close to an investigation into unauthorised access believe.
      Thousands of emails are thought to have been vulnerable during the cyber attack which continued until late on Wednesday evening, after the campaign team thought their system was again secure.
      It has also emerged that the Yes campaign, which has been working with digital forensic police, is conducting a full security sweep of its Glasgow headquarters which is expected to look for electronic listening devices.
      Informed sources say the evidence uncovered since police and BT were called in to investigate the possibility of email hacking suggests illegal activity on a large scale may have occurred.
      “It looks like this person could have been lurking in the background for several months,” said a source close to the inquiry.

    26. James Morton says:

      I just had a truly bizarre series of exchanges on twitter with some unionists. The argument degenerates as all these usually do with braveheart references & outdated BT propaganda on how the UK AAA status ensures Scottish mortgages.
      But I put a challenge to them. It was based on theme I had observed with BTs campaign. This is were they assert how Scotland benefits from the UK but never seems to contribute anything. So my challenge was this. “What does the union lose if Scotland leaves the union”
      These are some of the tweets I received:
      No BT has just brought honesty to the debate it promotes fact. Where is the fiction you talk of. The union is +ve for all.
      Yes we’re economically dependent on UK as parts of Scotland dependent on central belt that is reality not failure.
      when challenged on this I received this tweet
      Talk of dependency as failure is nonsense & only exposes that you’ve a grudge orientated why of thinking about the union.
      What matters is we’re at the heart of where we need to be & we have devolution too. #bestofbothworlds
      There are many more of these, but follow a simple theme. But what is striking is that they did not answer the original question. What does the union lose if Scotland leaves. It was not answered because they actually do believe that Scotland contributes very little to the UK. It does benefit from it hugely, but that is not a failure of the union, it is the positive case for the union.
      The message then is that Scotland is indeed shit, so embrace your inner Brit and that sting of injured pride will soon pass. Who knows even you can then live in Bliss like D Hothersall.
       

    27. Albalha says:

      @RonMcLean
      A McLeod will get a fee for his appearance as will the talking heads on Shereen and Headlines on Sunday morning.
      On the Bulmergate point that was a disussion between him and I McWhirter, so on that he was being asked for his views. Though I don’t agree with there being one regular paper reviewer.
       

    28. Morag says:

      “Supposedly impartial”?  Elliott Bulmer isn’t just a confirmed supporter of independence, he has been a card-carrying member of the SNP for years.  I think they just make stuff up.

    29. Morag says:

      I see BBC Scotlandshire is in fine form this morning.  Do not read while consuming hot beverages.

    30. lumilumi says:

      Daily Record managed to squeeze “Indy campaign” next to “(M)ethadone” and “Mugabe”… 😀

    31. Brian Powell says:

      There was only one commentator who questioned what the euro had to do with anything in the Herald article on the second Referendum.
      I didn’t comment at all, simply because I couldn’t understand where arguments in the article came from. There seemed to be a ‘coalition source’ who seemed to have got up that morning and thought,’ we’ll say something, just anything, make an assertion,  and see what happens’.
      There seem to be a lot of non-points bolted together to create an article.

    32. JLT says:

      I was on holiday in Spain at the start of August there. To be honest, the exchange rate between the £ and the Euro is terrible. They are almost at parity level. I noticed a comment by ‘Atypical Scot’ above. If he is correct, then we may just see that come to pass (or get very close to it); £1 = 1Euro.
       

    33. alexicon says:

      @James Morton. Easy Jim!
       
      The UK lost its AAA status months ago.

    34. Morag says:

      My reading of all this is that the No campaign genuinely think they are the rational, mainstream view, and that the Yes campaign are fringe but dangerous lunatics.  So it’s absolutely normal for them to dominate the press coverage, and for their supporters to write pro-No articles without revealing their allegiance, because it’s not really an allegiance at all, is it?  It’s just how normal people think.  So really, a No article is unbiased by definition because it reflects mainstream opinion.
       
      However, only rabid separatists could possibly support a Yes vote, and that is clearly an extremely biassed position, so everyone who supports Yes must declare their bias.  And then we can dismiss their articles because they’re biassed.  Catch 22.
       
      It’s the same sort of attitude that sees nothing wrong with allowing No propaganda, but then bans Yes leaflets on the grounds that they’re “political”.

    35. JLT says:

      James Morton
      I got involved in a discussion with a few of them on BT’s Facebook page. Forget it! Just like us, they won’t be swayed. They are hardcore to the Union. Nothing will budge them. Any difficult questions put to them are usually ignored, or countered with ‘You are a Racist. You hate the English. You live in a fantasyland just as Salmond does’ (shakes the head and rolls the eyes!)
      It’s all absolute nonsense. I’m staying away from Unionist sites. They are generally a waste of time when it comes to discussions.

    36. Macart says:

      They are going to lose and the hacking scandal is going to help. Somebody, whether sympathiser or otherwise fecked up. They used the info retrieved whilst paying lip service to hacking and some not even bothering with that. The information itself wasn’t exactly damning and under another form of campaign would barely have merited a low level smear, never mind the appalling hoo ha of last week.
       
      Not one of them either media or politico threw the info back in the hackers face and shopped them to the law. They shot themselves in the foot ‘again’ and are just waiting for the inevitable ACME anvil to drop in the shape of who precisely the hacker contacted and what motivated them to perform said hacks.
       
      They screwed up, they know it and there’s a rush on to get as much shit out there as possible in meantime. What goes round, comes round and our turn will come round.

    37. Jiggsbro says:

      The information itself wasn’t exactly damning
       
      That fact has been used by Ian Smart on Twitter as evidence that the hacking wasn’t politically motivated. Because if it was, they would have found and used something more embarrassing, apparently. I think that says more about Smart and the Unionist cabal than about the Yes campaign.

    38. Jeannie says:

      @Brian Powell
       
      Yes, myself and Mr. Jeannie noticed the same reference to the Euro and were totally baffled – just thought they had made a mistake and copied and pasted something into the wrong article.  It just didn’t seem to have any relevance.  Amazing how you instinctively keep on trying to give them the benefit of the doubt when they so obviously don’t deserve it.  It’s just so subtle sometimes, you miss it.

    39. Yesitis says:

      Morag
       
      I see BBC Scotlandshire is in fine form this morning.  Do not read while consuming hot beverages.
       
      Absolutely. I`m sure a certain blogger may very well either be laughing or fuming this morning. I`m going to go with the latter.
      Hey Ho.
      Anyway, I thought it was hilarious 🙂

    40. Jeannie says:

      @albalha
       
      My other half caught the end of The Reunion and was telling me about a comment made by Roy Hattersley on the programme, referring to the downfall of the Callaghan government in 1979 – you know, the event the Labour Party take such delight in blaming on the SNP which the media now treats almost as a de facto event.
       
      Hattersley apparantly said on the programme that there had been no need for them to lose the vote at all and it was all down to Callaghan’s intransigence.  He had apparantly been approached by Enoch Powell who said he could deliver support from some of the Ulster Unionists if they got something in return, such as a pipeline.  What kind of pipeline?  They said it didn’t matter – oil, gas, whatever, just so long as they got something.  Callaghan flatly refused to give them anything, and hey presto…..lost the vote.  He didn’t need SNP votes to keep him afloat – he just needed to be less intransigent.
       
      Wonder if they’ll change their story now about it being the SNP’s fault?  I wouldn’t hold my breath.

    41. cath says:

      The most obvious examples are:
      The SNP wanted Devo-Max on the ballot paper as a fall-back option
      Cameron forced the SNP to accept a single question referendum
      The SNP never wanted an independence referendum in the first place
       
      I’ve often wondered where such a bizarre, lazy and patently untrue media narrative was coming from. Apart from anything else, none of it actually helps the no side at all. After this week I have some growing suspicions… Add to it, “Yes Scotland is a bunch of amateurs who couldn’t organise a piss up in a brewery, far less win a referendum against the British state. They’re too stupid to even realise we’ll be hacking them, ffs.” 😀
       
      You could also consider that those in Westminster really, really do believe Scotland is a backwater which anyone with any intelligence or ambition has long since left for London, and those who remain – especially the separatists – are all Braveheart-watching imbeciles who’ll be no match for the might and intelligence of the clever people in London.

    42. Luigi says:

      There just aren’t enough hours in the day to refute all the accurate and misleading ani-independence claims.
       
      That’s why we still have another year to go. Don’t worry, BT will be burnt toast by Christmas – their stale bread is already smokin!

    43. Albalha says:

      @jeannie
      RH did indeed say that, but as you say the Labour Party narrative will not be for turning any time soon.
      And the programme was also a reminder of how incompetent and blinkered the Liberals were then, so no surprise where they find themsleves now.

    44. cath says:

      From that Stephen Noon article
       
      “The newspaper headlines, and sadly, far too often, the TV headlines, do not in anyway reflect what is going on in this campaign. They show just a sliver of the activity that is underway. So keen are they to be participants in the debate that they are missing the real story of this referendum.”
       
      Couldn’t agree more with this and I think, along with their own false narratives that they believe entirely, that will be the real downfall for the unionists. They don’t understand Scotland, and have no idea of what’s actually going on. Much of it is totally under the radar of the media, and that is entirely their own fault. I suspect they’re in for some surprises next year, not least on 18th September.

    45. annie says:

      The Michael Settle article about another referendum in rUK  is repeated in the Sunday Post minus the end part about joining the euro.

    46. cath says:

      I’d also add I went to one media debate in the book festival and have heard of some others from the politics one. What honestly surprises me is how surprised those in the media seem when they come face-to-face with audiences. It honestly doesn’t seem to have occurred to them how biased and pro-establishment they appear (not just on the referendum, NHS privatisation came up in the debate I was at). They are an elite in a bubble and echo chamber, talking to each other and a handful of politicians. As such they’re becoming increasingly irrelevant, and the more you’re aware of the bias and how they’re trying to frame the debate – entirely missing the real stories in favour of manufactured Twitter spats – the more irrelevant they become.

    47. Brian Powell says:

      As the Scottish Express is claiming 640,000 Scots would leave Scotland if it became Independent, that could be a reasonable question to include in the next poll.
      Would you leave Scotland if it became Independent?

    48. Macart says:

      @Jiggsbro
       
      Too right. Lip service condemnation followed by an open admission they’d use worse if given the chance. He probably doesn’t see a damn thing wrong with that statement.
       
      Just eye watering.

    49. Paula Rose says:

      Kevin McKenna in The Observer

      “Britain under the coalition government at Westminster has become colder, more ruthless and more aggressive. The Lord only knows what it will look like with Ukip in the coalition mix. It’s now time for the Yes campaign to become cold, ruthless and aggressive in telling Scots what has really become of England and show them the road map out of it.”

      I agree.

    50. Albalha says:

      R4 World this Weekend doing future of oil, Kemp on just now.

    51. Marcia says:

      I do find it interesting that the claims made by a  journalist who contacted Yes Scotland about the payment of a paltry £100 for a newspaper article is now backfiring on the No side. He or she has opened up a can of worms that he or she did not foresee. For those old enough to remember the Watergate saga in 1972 to 1975 it seems we may be heading that way. I do hope this journalist is publically named. Then we can start to see where the trails lead to.

    52. les wilson says:

      O/T
      Just heard on Sky News that Mugabe threatens tit for tat sanctions on US and UK companies for the sanctions they put on him for ” brutally cracking down on his opponents ”
      The interesting thing is that while there is no violence in Scotland in regard to our Independence, neither is there free democracy, all other kinds of dirty tricks are applied and of course under instruction of the British state and it’s many proxies.
      So they think Zimbabwe was  cheated out of democracy and applied sanctions to show their disdain. What a sick joke Westminster is. We are” not allowed a fair vote either” However, they do not care about that!
      There are no thought of real democracy here, they actually have NO PRINCIPLES as far as we are concerned.

    53. fitheach says:

      @DougtheDug
      The problem is that the public believe and the papers pretend that they are impartial

      The EU has already rejected Scotland
       
      Absolutely true. I was a volunteer at a stall yesterday and for the first time in weeks someone offered the “rejected by EU” as a reason to vote no. Whenever I enquire into people’s reasons for voting no I usually find the response reflects whatever that week’s scare story has been in the media. Everyone knows the old adage about never believing what is written in the papers but many people get taken in by the lies anyway.

      Of course, it isn’t possible to say all the papers and the BBC/STV are against us as you would come across as some kind of David Icke type character and dismissed as a crank. It is only possible to chip away at the falsehoods. Thank goodness this is a long campaign where we have time to chip away.

    54. pmcrek says:

      Struggling to find the quote but I have a memory from somewhere that Callaghan said more or less that the wishes of the Scottish electorate are irrelevant to Scotland’s future. His Government fell apart because his own party sabotaged his devolution policy.

    55. Albalha says:

      On R4 Mickey Moore saying future of oil and gas is very bright. But we need the strength of the UK economy to cope with a ‘volatile revenue source.’ Folk surely won’t buy that bollocks?
      Anyway he was cut off mid sentence as they ran out of time.
       

    56. Jeannie says:

      @albalha
       
      Yes, I just picked up the Mickey Moore piece but missed the Kemp piece.  Apparantly things are great in the North Sea because of the coalition government, but should they go bad, as they undoubtedly will, according to him, the good old UK government will be there to cushion the blow.  They’re just SO good to us!
       
      Also noticed he was flying the same old kite….you can’t base your policies on a volatile resource…..as if oil was the only resource Scotland has.  Noticed he couldn’t answer the question on tax though.

    57. tom says:

      Heard on radio 4 a cosy chat about history of 70s liblab pact which contained the chilling memory that Heseltine had said the the Tories “must be in power when the oil comes”. We know what happened then.

    58. Albalha says:

      @jeannie
      Kemp talked about the unprecedented investment and since it’s tax deductible there will be a certain (not catastrophic) volatility in the revenue stream.
      Of course that goes for whoever is in charge, as Kemp made clear, such a canny East coaster, I do like him.

    59. ianbrotherhood says:

      My son plays tennis, and is quite ‘serious’ about it. It’s been a steep learning curve for me as I’m not remotely sporty and had no idea how much the game involves. 
       
      Some of you will know what a ‘dinker’ is – they’re universally loathed and feared because they don’t play ‘winners’ i.e. passing-shots etc, they just keep pinging the ball back, slow, high. A good dinker grinds down his opponent while expending as little energy as possible – we watched a local tourney final last week where the top seed was beaten by a bottom-ranked newcomer. It went to a tie-break, first to 10, and took over half an hour – some of the rallies were 60, 70 shots. Torturous to watch. The dinker triumphed despite playing virtually no winners – almost every point he won was due to the opponent’s errors as he became more tired and frustrated.

    60. Norrie says:

      It’s been a week for the spinners right enough. My take.
      http://norrie.wordpress.com/

    61. muttley79 says:

      These are outright lies that Rev Stu is highlighting.  These are not mistakes, they are clearly a deliberate attempt to deceive the electorate in Scotland.  The MSM also clearly hold us in contempt. 

    62. faolie says:

      Interesting piece in SoS from Eddie Barnes on the hacking thing. Almost takes the Yes side.
       
      One thing weird towards the end of the article: “It is “a dirty game”, say combatants on both sides of the referendum debate. And in an atmosphere of paranoia, both sides are now levelling accusations at the other. On the Yes side, campaigners claim that pro-independence academics are being told to stay quiet by their superiors for fear of what their comments could do to funding applications at their university. On the No side, pro-UK business figures claim that there is an “atmosphere of fear” among colleagues who are worried about angry phone calls from SNP ministers telling them to remain schtum. Eh? SNP ministers are phoning No supporters?
       
       
      http://archive.is/Xf4Q9
       
       

    63. cath says:

      “As the Scottish Express is claiming 640,000 Scots would leave Scotland if it became Independent, that could be a reasonable question to include in the next poll.
      Would you leave Scotland if it became Independent?”
       
      And add one, “would you leave if there was a No vote?” as well.

    64. Tony Little says:

      @cath
       
      I woud never visit the Express so does anyone know where that incredulous figure of 640,000 comes from?  Perhaps the same place as those who claimed they would leave Scotland is there was a devolved parliament?
       
      How is Ms Mone these days?

    65. Morag says:

      OK, I’ll live up to the stereotype.  Tony, I’ve heard of anthropomorphism, but that’s ridiculous.  How can a figure be “incredulous”?

    66. Seasick Dave says:

      It is glaringly obvious from all the attitudes and comments on display from Better Together, politicians and the press, why Scotland has withered on the vine over the years.
       
      They really do not see the land where they live as worth nurturing or promoting.
       
      It really is astonishing to witness it all being exposed before us.
       
      Roll on 14 September 2014 – the day Scotland was saved.

    67. Albalha says:

      Re Express poll, first time I’ve visited that site. Anyway it’s an Angus Reid poll of 549 people.
      Further down says that 30% of folks who voted Labour at the last Scottish election will be voting YES. 22% who voted Lib Dem.

    68. Seasick Dave says:

      18 September 2014.
       
      Beamer thingy.

    69. BuckieBraes says:

      As long as it’s the right 640,000 who leave, I don’t have a problem.
       

    70. muttley79 says:

      This is from BBC Scotlandshire.  They say it is a quote from Kate Higgins 😀 😀  Don’t you just love satire…
       

      “I am shocked. It’s a calamity. The referendum is lost.
      Everyone should vote No because Blair Jenkins has lost all the trust MY family built up single-handedly over a hundred years of knocking on doors.
      This would never have happened if they had made ME the leader of the Yes campaign, or maybe even made ME the First Minister. But they didn’t listen to ME, did they?
      No Siree! But I’ll show them all. It should have been ME. ME. MEEEEE!”
       
       

    71. Tony Little says:

      @Morag
       
      “It’s a fair cop!”  😉

    72. Robert Louis says:

      Make no mistake, all the pieces have been put in place.  The propaganda will only increase, from the main stream media in Scotland and England, cheered on by that most blatant of propagandist organisations the BBC.  Those in the SNP and elsewhere, who naively think that close to the referendum, the media will be balanced are literally daft.  This is a one off, so London will be happy to risk everything.
       
      As for last week and Scottish ‘journaiists’, shame on you.  You know your are telling blatant lies to the people of Scotland.  Is that what your career in ‘journalism’ is??  telling blatant lies to usurp a democratic process??
       
      Perhaps those who have argued for a nicey nicey approach to the media will at last, given last weeks events, sniff the freaking coffee and wake up.  London will do every thing it can to keep a hold on Scotland.  There is NO positive argument for the union and they know it.
       
      As it has now been revealed that the hacking of YES Scotland, was widespread and going on for months, maybe, just maybe, the Scottish Government will ensure international media and election monitors are in place for the referendum, as suggested by Craig Murray.  You cannot trust either the Scottish media or London.  Not for one nanosecond.
       
      http://www.newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-news/7915-yes-scotland-hacking-large-scale-and-may-have-been-going-on-for-months
       
       

       
       

    73. Marker Post says:

      Right at the bottom of the Michael Settle article was an interesting wee paragraph, something like, “Meanwhile, senior Whitehall sources said that the near constant 10% lead for the No campaign in the polls would not last forever, there will inevitably be peaks and troughs”.
       
      He’s right about the troughs, obviously, but maybe not the way he intended.
       

    74. Eric McLean says:

      Can we get a poll in England asking how many residents would consider moving to an Independent Scotland??

      And if yes, why would they consider moving:

      1. Because the Economic outlook on Scotland will be better
      2. To get away from UKIP/LIBDEM/LAB/CON government (any combo)
      3. To participate in a reenergised, enlightened, political scene
      4. Other reason (Please state)
       
       
       

    75. G H Graham says:

      I would like to hear what Tom shields & his unionist comic strip chums at The Herald would rather have in place of what we currently have at Holyrood fo example. They use pages of copy each day to contrive blatant & subliminal messages to suggest Scotland suffers from a dysfunctional society whose people are worse off in one way or another exclusively because the majority party of government is the SNP. The NHS is a favourite topic at the Herald as is public transport, alcohol pricing & consumption, sectarianism & more recently the police, now that it has been amalgamated into a single force.
      And while it is a newspaper’s job to question government policy, one can’t help imagine the smug glee on the faces of Shields, Dunwoody, Settle, Gardham etc. who appear to enjoy repeating the allegation that Scotland is simply a shite country that but for the wisdom, generosity, checks & balances provided by Westminster, it would be even worse. Is there another modern, developed country in which it is possible to find such a measurably large group of its own citizens who work so diligently to express a constant, sneering derision of their own place of birth?
      If Scotland returns to full sovereign independence, may I be the first to congratulate all those writers & editors at The Herald for their valiant but fruitless efforts & then invite them all to fuck off.

    76. annie says:

      “How is  Ms Mone these days” losing money apparently but that will all change next year when she will be making millions according to herself.

    77. Hetty says:

      O/T
      just reading an article in The Morning Star this weekend, titled ‘ British oil interests defeated democracy’ . 
      Its about documents just released in the US under FOI about British involvement in Iran coup in 1953 and ousting of democratically elected PM Mohammad Mossaddegh. It was all about the oil. Interesting, might be available online? 
       

    78. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Tom Shields is very much a YES man and has been a YES man for years. 
      I wouldn’t worry at all about the strip and search bollocks. It has already backfired. The unionist media can’t continue exaggerating crime figures in Scotland and then expect folk to oppose more strip and search. Most folk think more strip and search is a good thing.  
      On the £100 payment nonsense thing I rather wonder if we are not getting some delayed fall-out from the departure of a couple of YES team under stressed circumstance. One or two comments on Kate Higgins very peculiar blog on the issue makes me wonder. 

    79. Angus says:

      “I wouldn’t worry at all about the strip and search bollocks.”
       
      Me neither!
       
      I reckon that it better be ‘stop and search” as I would draw the line at being anally probed for weapons if I was stopped by the police, especially (but not exclusively) in public.

    80. Mosstrooper says:

      Surely Ms. Mone is for YES. After all she is a lift and seperate supporter isn’t she?

    81. Jeannie says:

      @Angus
      I wouldn’t worry at all about the strip and search bollocks.”
       
      They’re stripping and searching bollocks?  I’d want danger money for that!
       

    82. gordoz says:

      I love this Express mince // 640,000 to depart Scotland in event of a YES vote…..
      How is Ms Mone these days?
      Only happy to organise a ‘transit campaign’ to the border for such folk; especially if ‘Mone’ is one of the party. But why wait for the enevitable guys ?? And also happy by the way, to provide a lift in the opposite direction for any ‘sensible’ Southern folk that want to help build a proud and successsful modern rersource laden Nation, on the nordic economic model. After all sounds like their would be plenty of room ….in some top class accommodation I bet.

    83. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Sorry. “Stop and search” it is. 
      I may inadvertently have increased recruitment to the police

    84. a supporter says:

      ianbrotherhood at 1.53 pm 25 aug
      Your dinker is my plonker.

    85. a supporter says:

      cath says 1;58pm 25 aug
      As the Scottish Express is claiming 640,000 Scots would leave Scotland if it became Independent, that could be a reasonable question to include in the next poll.
      No the question should be why don’t you FO now? 

    86. ianbrotherhood says:

      @a supporter-
       
      Huh?
      New balls please…

    87. a supporter says:

      Dave Mackewan Hill at 4.25
       
      It’s STOP and search FFS.

    88. a supporter says:

      “New balls please…”
      No! Where I play plonker is the term for a dinker. Because all they do is safety plonk the ball back all the time. We also say vagina meaning the queen.

    89. ianbrotherhood says:

      @a supporter-
       
      Aha! We had our wires crossed, if not our legs.
       
      That’s a new one for me. I’ve also been told that there is a difference between a ‘dinker’ and a ‘moonballer’, but the distinction was lost on me.
       
      Anyway – if you’ve experienced what it’s like playing against these people then you’ll understand what I’m havering about. I believe that’s what the Yes Scotland campaign is doing, and it’s working a treat. 

    90. Macsenex says:

      If 640000 intend to leave Scotland on Independence there will be an incredible number of properties for sale at knock down prices. This will be a great investment opportunity and also a means to house the homeless cheaply. A result!

    91. john king says:

      welsh not british says

      “It’s nice to see Iraqi information minister Muhammad Saeed al-Sahhaf (Comical Ali) is alive and well and earning a living from the anti-Scotland media.”
      tanks what tanks ?

    92. john king says:

      the more obfuscation and lies perpatrated by the press and the BBC is a government led campaign, because I really vbeleive theve got a massive secret to hide that will come out after independence, I really think the level to which Scotland and the rest of the UK  is a massive fraud beingf perpatrated, which could bankrupt the UK government with compensation payouts which would make the lend lease paymback look like small beerm and Gordon Brown only completed the payback to the US government a few short years ago,
      I think it will get very much worse

    93. john king says:

      that post makes me look like I was pissed, 
      I was at work and trying to do it quickly ,seems I’m not good at quickly 🙁

    94. john king says:

      “Interesting placement next to the Mugabe article – things to come?”
      I take it you did’nt notice the portion of a headline above it with something about methadone, so were between despots and drug addicts, who knew?
       

    95. cath says:

      “I really beleive theve got a massive secret to hide that will come out after independence,”
       
      I suspect there are quite a few. In the event of a Yes vote, I imagine massive shredder overtime in Westminster and the Scottish Office.

    96. john king says:

      paula rose says
      I agree.
      so do I 

    97. CameronB says:

      As we are on the subject of shredding documents, this may not appear immediately relevant to Scotland’s future and it may also be old news, but the ‘system’ is corrupt to the core. Think this doesn’t go on in the City?
      http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2011/08/real-reason-sec-has-been-shredding.html



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