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Wings Over Scotland

English votes for Scottish laws

Posted on December 11, 2014 by

One of our ever-alert agents uncovered this for us today. Published quietly last week by the House Of Commons Library and completely unremarked-upon by the Scottish media, it’s a document whose introductory text makes the relevant point concisely and eloquently without any need for elaboration or explanation on our part.

“The impact of removing Scottish MPs from the records of historic Commons divisions is also estimated. Of approximately 3,600 divisions to occur between 26th June 2001 and 26 September 2014, 22 (0.6%) would have concluded differently had the votes of Scottish MPs not been counted.

The note also compares, for each division since 2001, the lobby in which the majority of MPs per constituent country of the UK have voted to the lobby in which the majority of UK MPs voted.

In the current Parliament the lobby in which the majority of English MPs have voted has coincided with that of the majority of UK MPs for 99% of divisions. The majority of Scottish MPs has coincided with the majority of UK MPs for 24% of divisions; that of Welsh MPs for 26% of divisions.”

The emphasis is ours. England gets what England’s MPs vote for more than 99% of the time. Scotland gets what Scotland’s MPs vote for less than a quarter of the time. We’ll leave it at that.

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    231 to “English votes for Scottish laws”

    1. Gavin Alexander says:

      Answers my question perfectly.

      Many thanks to you and your ever-alert agent, Stu 🙂

    2. gillie says:

      More evidence that Westminster doesn’t work for Scotland.

    3. Macart says:

      ‘On’ of our ever-alert agents… 🙂

    4. jules says:

      The case for Scottish independence in 3 short House of Commons paragraphs.

    5. Macart says:

      Kinda let’s you know what EVEL is really all about. 😉

    6. grahamlive says:

      A case of the data not quite being in line with the rhetoric. But what does that matter when you have the chance to show those uppity Jocks who’s boss eh?

    7. Oscar Taime says:

      Guess it’s not a union of equals after all.

      Who’d have thunk it?

      OT but Full “Why won’t he just die” video with added Zombie comment available here:

    8. Gavin Alexander says:

      One question here Stu… do you know if these 3,600 divisions are for English-only matters, or for all UK-wide matters?

    9. Murray McCallum says:

      Funny how the largest electorate almost invariably get what they want.

      I think a key problem is that it’s only 99.4% success. Southern British tradition is 100.0% domination – hence the EU hostility.

    10. ian says:

      Democracy what democracy?Maybe what should be happening is English MP’S dont vote on scottish matters ,seems fair and reasonable to me.

    11. Les Wilson says:

      There is little left to say right enough, but there it is, we make hardly any difference at all despite Labour/ Slab bleatings.

    12. tombee says:

      You know, most of the time over the past couple of years, the overwhelming emotion I experience when reading reports like this,is one of outrage.
      Nowadays, I just feel trapped.

    13. fred blogger says:

      good old MSM/WM mustn’t spoil a yarn with facts, nowt taken out, except the truth.
      more proof if any were needed that scotland is massively underrepresented by labdemtories in WM.

    14. Bigdrone says:

      Intersting info for the National – the only outlet, apart from Wings, who will report on that.

      Well spotted!

    15. Derick fae Yell says:

      Table 10

      Number of divisions that would have been different without Scotland since 2000 = 0.6%

      Useful information

    16. Muscleguy says:


      And not just MPs. Recently the fucking Lords summarily removed control over an aspect of energy planning from the Scottish government without consultation and by fiat.

    17. Craig P says:

      Good question Gavin. The paper does seem to suggest all divisions, although even if it wasn’t, I doubt the UK Parliament currently officially records the difference between UK legislation and England only legislation – that is a distinction too fine at this present time.

    18. Grizzle McPuss says:

      Ssshh, don’t tell Adenoid Ed, he’s convinced that Scot’s MP’s are far more worthy than a mere quarter of the time. Why in his eyes, our Scottish MP’s influence is paramount to UK democracy (well, to Labour’s aspirations at least).

      But we all know…it’s all about the moneeeeeey

      No Scottish WM link = no Scot’s revenue = Englanshire can’t have their shiny new projects

    19. drawdeaddave says:

      Scotland has a media?
      Bang goes the West Lothian question

      Any ideas as to what we can call our question?

      The misrepresentation @ WM question!

    20. BrianW says:

      I can just see them sitting there at the leather topped oak table in a dusty room in Westminster, a pile of statute/law scrolls in front of them.

      One for you.. four for us..

      One for you.. four for us..

      I’m sure the BBC and other worthy news outlets will surely pick up on this anomaly.. They’ll be running up the story now.. Won’t they.. They do, do news don’t they..

    21. drawdeaddave says:

      It does beg the question, whats the point in sending down a squad of SNP MP’s other than to keep Labour troughers out.

    22. Desimond says:

      Theres the start for Wee Blue Book II…

    23. Morag says:

      Having read it again, it’s that last part that’s really surprising. I mean, it’s not that strange that removing a sometimes disparate group of less than 10% of the votes doesn’t change the outcome most of the time. But votes going the opposite way to the way the Scottish MPs voted, even when those MPs are overwhelmongly from the unionist parties, that’s quite a shocker.

    24. west_lothian_questioner says:

      Shouldn’t it now be known as EVAL (English votes for all laws) rather than EVEL.

      Alternatively, EVEL could be rebadged as English votes for every law.

      There surely is something rotten in the state of Westminster.

    25. Gavin Alexander says:

      Section 6 Appendix, under Scotland:

      I look forward to seeing a new column added here for SNP in the 2015 General Election.

    26. Jim McIntosh says:

      O/T – Sorry for going off topic so sooon, but don’t know if people have heard this. It’s a man calling in to an LBC talk show on food banks a few days ago.

    27. Harry McAye says:

      The Daily Mail will be outraged it is as high as 0.6%.

    28. Jim Mitchell says:

      Ah so that’s what democracy means? At Westminster at least!

    29. Lesley-Anne says:

      I think this falls under the heading of “Proof that David Cameron’s call for English Votes for English Laws” simultaneously and at the same time 😉 as more powers for Scotland is just an obscure way of delaying the delivery of a couple of crushed crumbs from the Fudge Report to Holyrood.

    30. Stoker says:

      Well done “Agent 001”

      That has to be destined straight for inclusion in the next WBB?

      Go on, you know you want to, give us all something to smile about before you break for the festive season. Put us out our misery and announce your plans for the next WBB.

    31. think again says:

      @ drawdeaddave

      “whats the point in sending down a squad of SNP MP’s other than to keep Labour troughers out?”

      Because we can. because we need to. Because it works, whether three six or eleven, every time we do it we gain more if only to try and shut up the squeaky wheel.

      Even better, the thought of the Tories and or Labour needing us to stay in power or even unite against us gives me goose bumps of pleasure.

      They are scared of Alex Salmond, another 30 odd will have them screaming for mercy.

    32. galamcennalath says:

      In the current Parliament …. England gets what England’s MPs vote for more than 99% of the time. Scotland gets what Scotland’s MPs vote for less than a quarter of the time.

      Not at all surprising since the ruling Tories have only one MP in Scotland!

      What England wants, Scotland has to accept.

      So, to put it another way .. VOTE LABOUR, GET TORIES

    33. Gavin Alexander says:

      Yes Craig, and if the UK Parliament currently does not officially record the difference between UK legislation and England-only legislation, then this begs the question, what are they basing their bloody complaints on?… It would seem to be a theoretical problem, not a real one. In other words, they are upset about a THEORETICAL possibility that Scottish MPs can influence English-only matters, without even seeking to discover the REAL effect or the reverse effect – English MPs voting on Scottish-only matters.

      Even in this paper they have not done so.

      Mountains molehills storms teacups…

      The squirmings of an empire-minded country as it has to change.

    34. Clootie says:

      I thought we had presented the best solution – Independence

    35. Helena Brown says:

      Well Stu a Mr England in the Scottish Statesman will be quite surprised. He feels hard done by that Christine Grahame would consider standing for Berwick as all us Scots just dominate Parliament. He also if I remember has a problem with the number of foreigners (that’s us Scots) who sit for English seats.

    36. fred blogger says:

      think again
      aye, they’ll ensure procedure is followed to the letter and then some.
      indyscot is the aim.
      imo WM acts/operates as if it’s a medieval walled citadel, with a proposed overt move towards federalism, even more so.

    37. Murray McCallum says:

      The disgruntlement with 0.6% of laws being influenced by Scots is of similar scale to the 0.48% rate of UK failure in European court decisions.

      Obviously this means the UK should walk away from the meddling European Court and “Europe’s war on British justice”.

      It does seem that Southern Britain does not like any foreign influence over anything.

    38. Lesley-Anne says:

      Desimond says:

      English choppers for Scottish Waters

      I think this falls under TWO categories here Desimond.

      Category 1 … Reasons why we are Better Together

      Category 2 … Pooling and sharing of resources

      Still we can all rest easy in our beds that the M.O.D. is CUTTING this vital Scottish based rescue service whilst at the same time it is spending £15 Million on a base in Bahrain. I wonder how much the loss of the Kinloss Rescue Centre will save. I’m betting it will NOT be anything like £15 Million!

    39. Lesley-Anne says:


      I forgot to put theBahrain link up! DOH! 😛

    40. Meindevon says:

      This is brilliant and every time one of my English neighbours moans about not having EVEL I will direct them here.

      But Stu, it’s so frustrating. We see and read these things and are educated. Is there no way of getting it mainstream for ALL to read? Surely there must be a way. We need you on the nightly news bulletins telling everyone what really is happening, here in England too.

    41. Stoker says:

      Yes, “EVEL”, its all about Westminster priorities, isn’t it?

    42. Chic McGregor says:

      In other words, EVEL is what EVEL does already.

    43. Clootie says:

      They do realise that we have an Oil industry and a fishing industry that require adequate Search and Rescue capacity. Have they any concept of the number of installations and daily flights?

      Although we have commercial helicopters with winch capability that ignores the performance window. Military pilots and aircraft can stretch the operating envelope.

      Never mind we will have more nukes on the Clyde.

      Requirements and Resources don’t quite add up here!

    44. James D says:

      Bear in mind that the SNP don’t vote on English matters. It might not make much difference to these percentages with just 6 members, but a possible 40-50 members not voting might skew those tables quite a bit and make a real difference.

    45. msean says:

      Westminster dictatorship is what this looks like,a democratic dictatorship.

    46. Grouse Beater says:

      With England having the vast majority of votes who needs surveys to determine Scotland has low to nil chance of getting progressive policies approved by Westminster?

    47. Owen John says:

      Not “completely unremarked-upon by the Scottish media”

      The Herald ran a piece on it.

      I share your scepticism about the quality of the Scottish media, but accuracy is important.

    48. ian says:

      In response to Jim McIntosh’s post.I left the UK five and a half years ago and the changes have been staggering eg food banks,zero hour contracts,the awakening of many of the scottish people to whats been the “rape”of our country for decades.The whole nasty business makes me feel angry and you begin to understand more why people can be driven to armed struggle.Where is Scotland going to be in another five years time should things not change?

    49. Lesley-Anne says:

      Now let me see if I have got this straight.

      1) All Nimrods are scrapped = NO surveillance or anti submarine aircraft in U.K. far less in Scotland.

      2) Kinloss Rescue Co-ordination Centre Scrapped

      3) English Votes for English Laws DELAYING scraps from the Fudge Report to Holyrood

      4) Alleged Russian submarine in Scottish waters

      5) *ahem* Foreign air forces requested to send Anti Submarine aircraft to carry out search for Russian submarine

      6) £15 Million to be spent on military base in Bahrain

      7) All of Scottish Oil revenues flow to Westminster

      8) All nuclear submarines and W.M.D.’s to be based at Faslane

      Is it just me or these all Excellent examples of the two options I posted earlier? 😉

      Category 1 … Reasons why we are Better Together

      Category 2 … Pooling and sharing of resources

      I wonder if all our NO voting compatriots are jumping for joy at these events occurring? 😉

    50. YESGUY says:

      Outstanding STU.

      Sums up what the price of the union is. 26% is a bloody joke. 3/4 times we get bugger all. The union dividend

      This has to change.

    51. Cherry says:

      This wee bit of info should fall into the hands of the National.

      The Kinross helicopter rescue base is being replaced with a unit of soldiers from Cambridge, 930 soldiers and families. Ever felt we’re being played, putting troops on the ground!

    52. fred blogger says:

      you’re spared, labour mp who is not sexist, honest, says fisheries no job for women.
      so women fisher folk it’s time to hang up your sou’wester, stow yer ropes, and put the hand cream away, no perfect storm for ye m’lasses, from now on it’s a tin of sardines.

    53. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Lesley Anne £15 million to build a new port in Bahrain any info on the costs of upkeep,& Wesstminster/MOD are contributing to the slave labour of the immigrant workforce.

    54. galamcennalath says:

      EVEL has become established in political vocabularly.

      I think we should ensure EVSL also finds its way into common usage to highlight just how the Union relates to Scotland.

    55. Lesley-Anne says:

      The only info I have at the moment Ronnie is the link in the Daily Mail I put up. Apparently Bahrain will be footing most of the running costs. 😉

      Under the deal – described by Chief of the Defence Staff General Sir Nicholas Houghton as ‘symbolic and strategically important’ – the port will be expanded and a forward operating
      base established, with Bahrain paying most of the costs.

      Apparently the U.K. has 4 Minehunters that are permanently based out there in Bahrain but this building programme will enlarge the base to allow more ships to be *ahem* based there.

      Britain already has four minehunters permanently based at the Mina Salman Port, but the plans will allow for an increase in the number and size of warships sent to the area.

    56. Stoker says:

      Cherry says:

      “The Kinross helicopter rescue base is being replaced with a unit of soldiers from Cambridge, 930 soldiers and families. Ever felt we’re being played, putting troops on the ground!”

      Did you mean Kinloss?
      And where did you hear about the unit from Cambridge?

      btw, another way of viewing this is another 1000+ possible Unionist votes for that area.

    57. Chic McGregor says:

      OT Big bio article on Jim Murphy, almost a political biography, everything you wanted to not have to know, over on Caltonjock.

      Must read for Murphy fans.

    58. David says:

      So the UK can do ‘Boats for Bahrain’ but can’t do ‘Ships for Scotland’. That tells us exactly where Scotland is on Westminster’s priority list – last by a mile.

    59. David says:

      (Last by a nautical mile, even!)

    60. David says:

      Kinloss is ‘kin lost, ‘kinhell!

    61. Ken500 says:

      More Westminster lies. The West Lothian myth. There has never been 50+ MP’s from Scotland holding the balance of power. There could be in 2015.

      7/5/15 vote SNP/Alliance.

    62. James Kay says:

      Any time that someone proposes EVEL, then the Correct response should be SVSL:
      Scottish Votes for Scottish Laws.

      This, after all, is what we want – independence from Westminster’s interference!

    63. The Knome says:

      @wings over scotland, can I suggest 1 addition?

      After this line:

      England gets what England’s MPs vote for more than 99% of the time. Scotland gets what Scotland’s MPs vote for less than a quarter of the time,

      Can you add this?

      The general public get what they want less than 10% of the time.

      That would nicely summarise the reality.

    64. Jim McIntosh says:


      There are no additional servicemen coming up to Kinloss as far as I’m aware. The 700 + engineers (39 Engineer Regiment I think) were posted up here a couple of years ago when the RAF pulled out (the Nimrods were scrapped). Speaking to some of troops in the bars in Forres over the past few months and rumours are that some are actually going back down south. Nothing official though…..yet.

    65. Bob Mack says:

      Actually could be well over 1000 votes for union, plus you have the new Yeomanry outfit to be based in Edinburgh .Beginning to feel a bit colonised

    66. Truth says:

      Dynamite information that would have been useful during the referendum.

    67. Croompenstein says:

      The First Minister Sottish Executive!!!!!

      Do you think these fuckers are just deliberately trying to wind us up first we had the EVEL pish from dishface, then the ships being built abroad from the sealord, the sovereign wealth fund for NE from Bawsborne, you’re getting ALL the submarines and lovely nukes from MoD, 15 billion for English roads and some spare gravel and chips for us!!!! and now this… they are doing it deliberately 🙂

    68. Stoker says:

      Jim McIntosh says:
      “The 700 + engineers (39 Engineer Regiment I think) were posted up here a couple of years ago when the RAF pulled out”


    69. Stoker says:

      @ Bob Mack,

      “the new Yeomanry outfit”

      What’s that all about then, Bob, when’s that happening?

    70. manandboy says:

      The No voters who could’ve been Yes voters, havn’t a f***in clue what they have done.
      The enormity of it – to hand us back into slavery, under the colonial rule of the British Empire.
      The end of this is not going to be pleasant.

    71. Alan Mackintosh says:

      Stoker, I think its a new TA unit, light recce, but not with Scimitars. Equipped with stripped down landies with some jimpys as I recall.

    72. Alan Mackintosh says:

      Stoker, there you go. They also have .5 Brownings as well… Linked with RSDG

    73. boris says:

      Cherry Kinloss will play host to 39 Air Support Engineering Regiment. Personnel and families totalling approximately 1500. The force is primarily recruited in England and unmarried soldiers can be expected to head south of a weekend and for holidays, apart from the usual deployment in support of RAF deployment which is the major function of the force.

      Present home to the Regiment is a former American airbase located just outside the small village of Waterbeach 5 miles north of Cambridge. London can be reached by rail in just over 1 hour.

      Land free up is to be sold to land developers. Plans are to extend Waterbeach building up to 13,000 new houses and infrastructure improvements allowing further development. Houses are expected to sell for about £650,000 each. Total population increase anticpated 33,000.

      Revenue in the area is expected to increase by £100,000,000 annually

      I think the return for Kinloss is a massive loss to the local income.

      Doesn’t seem fair!!

    74. Stoker says:

      Thanks, Alan (6.59pm).

    75. Bobby says:

      wat i would like to know is this ; how many times did lab Mps vote against scotland and did that number have purely english mps or are slab voting against us too

    76. starlaw says:

      In a news interview, spokesman was asked three times what the role of this regiment would be on the battlefield, his response was to point out how easily they could move about through civilians

    77. David Mills says:

      Ok, let get to key issue currently the only English only matters at Westminster are those that have no impact in the UK copherrs any that have an impact consequently effect fund evaluable to other UK wide and the retained powers not devolved. The exclusion on any MP in this synario is undemocratic and prejudicial.

      I can see only three valid option.

      1 the is a tight pre-defined budgeted allocation for “English only” matter. Thus these division would only effect budgeting for other English only matter.

      2. Adevoloved English parliament to deal with these matters freeing WM UK wide and non devolved matter have devolved the English only matter to this English parliament.

      3.the acceptance that excluding MPs from voting on any matter before the house in the current model is untenable and the union is desolved that all matter infront of WM will be English only matter

    78. Bobby says:

      and before anyone says anything i know they do wat there told

    79. gfaetheblock says:

      In summary, in the current parliament, the opposition (labour who have a majority in scotland) vote against the government most of the time. Feels like what you would expect to happen. Non story.

    80. Meindevon says:

      So am right in saying that if EVEL goes ahead it is Scotland that is then discriminated against as there is no SVSL in place. Most folk think all Scottish laws (?) and bills are passed in Holyrood, but that’s not the case, is that right?

    81. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      When does the fight start tonight?

    82. Marcia says:

      Bugger (the Panda)

      They are in the car park stripped to the waist as we read. 🙂

    83. Croompenstein says:

      Anyone heard from Nana the wonder woman of wings?
      She always puts on super links for us and is missed when she not here

    84. heedtracker says:

      How on earth THE VOW will get farted out by that lot doesn’t bare thinking about either. No wonder the Smith farce was so slap dash. Why bother chaps, the nae’s have it.

    85. Alan McHarg says:

      What impact would 40-50 SNP ministers have if the changed their policy and started voting on English only matters…just to rock the boat and maybe gain concession’s?

      Below a link to the Scottish and Northern Irish Yeomanry Regiment:

    86. Marcia says:

      Common Space launches on Monday;

    87. boris says:

      October 2013; Youth Councillors Back Calls For Ban On Religion On Education Committees

      a. Barry Black, Labour nominee for Aberdeen (West) called backed a Scottish Youth Parliament motion calling for legislation making compulsory the membership of three religious figures on local authorities’ education committees necessary to be abandoned.

      Instead of religious committee members he believes that the three positions should be filled by young people, taken from democratically elected bodies such as the Scottish Youth Parliament or the Aberdeen City Youth Council.

      He said, “It is not correct in 2013 to have religious figureheads – who nobody elected and many disagree with – to be making decisions about school children. I firmly believe that multiculturalism should be a key part of religion in faith in school, however, this in no way makes it appropriate to have unelected people deciding the budget and crucial decisions for schools. The majority of young people have no affiliation to religion and by only selecting religious representatives from a faith with a ‘place of worship,’ minority faith groups and those who do not follow religion are not represented.”

      Barry and his colleagues in Anberdeen need to be careful. If Jim Spud Murphy takes over leadership of the labour Party in Scotland they might well be removed from the labour lists.

      The most recent spat between Jim and the Scottish Secular Society reveals all is not well. Statements:

      “The Scottish Secular Society have no problem with Mr Murphy’s beliefs, but a very great problem with the way in which we fear they will influence his political decisions. In particular, we don’t approve of support for the idea that bishops can be put in charge of sex education in Catholic schools. We are also concerned that he will defend privileges for organised religion, segregating children on the basis of their parents’ religion in denominational schools with separate staff rooms and entrances. We are utterly opposed to sectarianism in any shape or form. There is also general agreement amongst secularists that unelected religious representatives, both Catholic and Church of Scotland, voting on how Councils should deploy their limited education budgets is absurd. Murphy has been reported in the press praising the US because religion has a bigger role in politics. That is not a scenario the Scottish Secular Society would welcome in Scotland. Opinions on Facebook’s Secular Scotland are personal and social media is the appropriate place to express them. The Scottish Secular Society is the appropriate organisation to challenge the religious privileges.”

      Michael McGrath, of the Scottish Catholic Education Service, said: “Catholic schools are expected to comply with council policies and Scottish Government guidance on the provision of religious observance. “All parents have a right to withdraw children from religious observance on grounds of conscience. “However, where a parent chooses a Catholic school for their child’s education, they choose to be part of the school community and to opt in to the school’s ethos and practice which is imbued with religious faith and religious observance. If a parent was concerned about this they would surely choose a school which does not have a faith character.”

      “Murphy is taking the Labour Party into dangerous territory when he calls on it to make a special play for the religious vote. His personal religious enthusiasm may be blinding him to the facts. It is no longer the case that clerics can dictate the way their congregations vote. People are too independent-minded now to be herded into the voting booth by religious considerations alone. The society that we live in today is very different to the one that existed fifty years ago, and we want our politicians to reflect that change. Even in the last twenty years Scottish mass attendance has almost halved. The Labour Party should rein in Mr Murphy before he does it permanent damage. A poll by ComRes published last week showed that half of those who define themselves as Christian say that religion is of “little importance” to them.”

      Expect sparks to fly soon. Jim just can help himself

    88. CameronB Brodie says:

      msean said:

      Westminster dictatorship is what this looks like,a democratic dictatorship.

      Westminster dictatorship is what this looks like, a pseudo-democratic dictatorship.

      There, sorted. 😉

    89. SquareHaggis says:


      1 :the body of yeomen; specifically :the body of small landed proprietors of the middle class
      2 :a British volunteer cavalry force created from yeomen in 1761 as a home defense force and reorganized in 1907 as part of the territorial force
      First Use: 14th century

    90. CameronB Brodie says:

      Despite the invocation of an “ethical” foreign policy and all the talk of “liberal interventionism” – a concept that the shadow defence secretary, Jim Murphy, has tried to resurrect in recent days, with his reference to a responsibility beyond your own borders” – in practice, Labour’s approach had a distinctly realist bent.

    91. boris says:

      Gemma Doyle, Labour’s Shadow Defence Minister, commenting on the news that the Kinloss Air Sea rescue is to close said ,

      “However, hundreds of soldiers and their families are being transferred to Kinloss, turning it into one of the biggest army bases in Scotland. This will be a huge boost to the local and regional economy.”

      Where the hell did they find her!! She needs to be briefed about her brief.

    92. Chitterinlicht says:


      Is it not amazing what good old fashioned evidenced based checking of facts journalism can reveal


    93. Graeme Doig says:

      The question i would like to ask is why have no SNP MP’s done their sums and brought this up in the HOC before now?

    94. X_Sticks says:

      Live Independence

      Interview with Allan Grogan from Labour for Indy (Now SSP I think) ON NOW

    95. CamreronB Brodie says:

      In case folk don’t click my last link, the next paragraph follows.

      But it went beyond mere realism, that is, the prioritisation of national interest or security over morality or ideology. Blair and his family stayed as guests of Mubarak at his villa in Sharm el Sheikh in December 2001; on 1 February, at the height of the Egyptian crisis, our former PM described Mubarak as “immensely courageous and a force for good”. What was he thinking?

      Tony likes despots. ;(

    96. CameronB Brodie says:

      Hungry again + still need glasses. 🙂

    97. CameronB Brodie says:

      The next paragraph from my previous link read;

      But it went beyond mere realism, that is, the prioritisation of national interest or security over morality or ideology. Blair and his family stayed as guests of Mubarak at his villa in Sharm el Sheikh in December 2001; on 1 February, at the height of the Egyptian crisis, our former PM described Mubarak as “immensely courageous and a force for good”. What was he thinking?

      Nu British Labour get on well with despots. ;(

    98. lumilumi says:

      Sorry, haven’t read all the comments above, just the ATL thingy by Rev Stu.

      The feeling I get is that we’re talking about a moribund, dying political system.

      People in England are very frustrated because they don’t have an alternative, apart from a UKIP protest vote – and they don’t know what UKIP really stands for… Or maybe they do…If not UKIP, they have to vote Labour or Tory. LibDems as a protest vote has collapsed.

      It’s not the fault of the good Engilsh people that they’re subjected to this undemocratic pseudo-democracy – fed the line that they’re all defenders of the world as we (actually, they, the establishment) know it.

      People in Scotland have an alternative.

      The SNP now seems like a party of not rabid natioinalism but one of reasonable, honest, hard working and capable people who put Scotland’s (not their own, party’s or UK’s) interests first.

      They’ve worked their little arses off for the benefit of ordinary Scots for decades, and most notably their seven+ years in goverment.

      The Scots have lliked it, even the way the SNP has taken moral stands – Megrahi being the prime example. Some SLAB, LibDem, Tory MSPs might have private opinions close to those of the SNP line but they dare not to speak it and contradict the UK party line.

      The SNP is a vehicle for indepence. I’d vote SNP as long as it takes for Scottish independence. Then I’d vote for the party that most closely matches my personal political outlook. It might not be the SNP.

      I’m sorry, our lovely Iain Bro of the SSP and other YES workhorses. Losing the referendum is disheartening but actually heartening. NOW it really starts. Scots MUST elect the maximum number possible of pro-Scotland MPs in May 2015.

      (Sorry for another long post/rant :embarrassed smiley: )

    99. Balaaargh says:


      You’re reading this all wrong! Let’s call these figures a measure of MPs effectiveness. Scotland is getting its way 25% of the time but with only 9% of the total number of MPs.

      That means we are punching above our weight by almost 300%!

      Meanwhile, England with 80% of MPs is only at 99%, a difference of only 25% effectiveness. Clearly, the MPs in England need to buck up their ideas.

      How awesome is that! 😀

    100. Lesley-Anne says:

      CameronB Brodie says:

      Nu British Labour get on well with despots. ;(

      If I may make a slight alteration to your phrase there Cameron:

      Nu British Labour ARE despots. 😛

    101. Sinky says:


      Worth stressing that, even with current limited devolution powers, our MSPs at Holyrood have more day to day responsibilities than MPs but claim roughly half the amount in expenses than MPs at Westminster.

      Everyone should compare the relative expenses of their local MSP and MP and use it where appropriate during the Westminster campaign.

      “Scottish” Labour MPs spend a fortune on postage etc on local issues that are properly within the remit of MSPs.

    102. Democracy Reborn says:

      Great piece, Stu.

      I could swear though that after the referendum, some Scot Labourite (forget who) made a comment to the effect that by voting No, the Scots were quite happy to accept England governing them 75% of the time.

      Reassuring, ain’t it?

    103. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Richie Venton’s latest blog article – why the SSP, from now until May, will be campaigning flat-out for a £10 Minimum Wage:

    104. StevieMcB says:

      Ask the Rev Q&A

    105. carthannas says:

      Slightly o/t but definitely related – interesting article in the Financial Times called “London should break free from Little England” [!] Uses virtually the same arguments that we use in favour of indy. Worth a look. Pity they didn’t speak up for us!

    106. Paula Rose says:

      Ian honey – if I had a small business and could take someone on – should I be deterred from doing so as I couldn’t afford the living wage, or should I regard the supplement to my employee (if it were available) as a government investment?

    107. Morag says:

      Paula, that sounds like an article. You need to write it.

    108. De Valera says:

      Yet more proof that the 1707 “union” was nothing more than a takeover.

    109. fred blogger says:

      Paula Rose
      robin mcalpine has done some work on that @ the common weal.

    110. Chic McGregor says:


      The often did. After all the economic facts are on our side and the FT lives or dies by its factual accuracy. It just went unreported. By both sides.

    111. Paula Rose says:

      Just me being very serious – I have no problem about my tax take supplementing small business endeavour, but I am outraged that I subsidise multi-national corporations. All a bit academic, earning as I do the minimum wage.

    112. Sinky says:

      Craig Murray claims that no UK news or broadcasting outlet will allow him to prove that Jack Straw is lying about US rendition under his watch.


    113. Cherry says:

      @ Stoker
      sorry that was a typo is Kinloss.
      The story of the 930 soldiers is at the bottom of the page in more stories on this. Sorry I was in a rush when I posted.
      Your comment about 1000 extra votes is food for thought. I never about thought that!

    114. dougiekdy says:

      O/T but in the absence of anything to watch I made the mistake of watching BBCQT…

      1. “The choice could not be clearer between Labour and the Conservatives” – how?

      2. UKIP are on again – Farage? Again?

      3. And Russell Brand.

      The Wife won’t be happy about the size 11 hole in the new telly…

    115. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Paula Rose (10.00) –

      If any employer, of whatever size, pays duff wages, the state is obliged to top-up one way or t’other via benefits. You, as a small employer, contribute to that ‘top-up’. The really big employers (no need to name them) don’t contribute as much as you because they don’t pay their full whack of taxes (if, indeed, they pay them at all!). Either way – you pay, I pay, we all pay, whether you employ anyone or not.

      That’s where the ‘race to the bottom’ has brought us to – how can any ‘small’ employer compete with multinationals who get 1000s of applications for 10s of jobs offering, at best, minimum wage and/or zero-hours contracts?

      The whole thing is unsustainable. It’s called ‘capitalism’, and it’s pure fucking evil.

      Sorry Paula. I haven’t answered your question.

      Should you take on someone and pay them £10 an hour? Er, no. Not if you’re doing it alone. But if all small employers agreed to do it? Small businesses would thrive, big retailers would be forced to follow suit (if they wanted decent staff), a lot more cash would be circulated locally etc etc.

      The alternative? Wait until the big supermarkets and energy suppliers have us working for them on a rota basis, for nothing, until we’re ready to drop – we’ll be fucking grateful for whatever food/beer/petrol tokens they deign to give us.

      Oft-heard quote saying these days : ‘Ach well, shouldn’t complain, we’re lucky to have a job’

      Er, well, actually, no, you daft fuck – employers are ‘lucky’ to have such a docile, insipid herd of biddable dunderheids at their beck and call.

      These bastards will happily milk each and every one of us until we keel over, utterly drained. Makes not a jot of difference to them what we think, or feel, or dream for our weans – so long as we work, make them profit, and live long enough to produce weans. Elsewise, their whole rotten production line grinds to a halt.

      End Capitalism Forever – Nae Merr Shagging!

    116. dougiekdy says:

      O/T again sorry!

      Russell Brand – “Nigel Farage is a pound shop Enoch Powell and we gotta watch ‘im”.

      Quite liked that ane:-)

    117. CRAIGthePICT says:

      I always wondered about those stats, great spot. Democracy my arse.

      Get some revenge and tweet this out:

    118. Morag says:

      OK, Ian needs to write the article. Look, it’s almost done…

    119. CameronB Brodie says:

      That’s where the ‘race to the bottom’ has brought us to – how can any ‘small’ employer compete with multinationals who get 1000s of applications for 10s of jobs offering, at best, minimum wage and/or zero-hours contracts?

      It doesn’t have to be large-plant multinationals that small businesses are competing against. Multinationals are squeezing multiple small-business sectors through franchise operations.

      Another consideration is who the local banks are invested into. They don’t appear to like supporting local competition to existing debtors.


    120. Paula Rose says:

      @ Ian Lovelihood –

      So who actually buys anything – or am I missing something?

    121. Charles Edward says:

      See that george down Asda, he doesn’t care about the weans that make his clothes.
      Squeeze every last drop of blood then get another body. It’s called profit.
      Them’s that has it want to keep it.
      Just like the oil.
      The Iron heel.

    122. Paula Rose says:

      Ian doll do you have an answer to me meeting a local need? This is not one of my flippant ripostes.

    123. author_Al says:

      @CRAIGthePICT. Ta for the link. Katy Clark is my local MP so I will be asking her to justify why she abstained on the Fracking bill. Tried to cover her actions up but your link unmasks the duplicity. Labour is in dire straits and I can’t stand that band…

    124. manandboy says:

      Saw advert on a First bus today claiming free school meals for Primary 1 to 3’s as a N Lanarkshire policy.
      It is of course a Scottish Government policy.

      Labour’s hatred of the SNP is a major obstacle to progressing Scottish prosperity.

      The Scottish branch of the English Labour & Unionist Party really has to be closed down as it is against the National interest.

      An English political party in Scotland whose primary purpose is to hate Scots and Scotland cannot be tolerated.

      Labour must be evicted on May 7th 2015.

    125. HandandShrimp says:

      I must confess that I am baffled by Labour’s decision to whip their MPs to abstain on the second reading of the fracking bill. Even if they thought it was a lost cause why would they put a whip on it to abstain? Did they all want to go the pub or something?

    126. Bob Sinclair says:

      South Kintyre (Argyll & Bute) first prefs. result:
      SNP – 62.2% (+43.9)
      LDEM – 14.1% (-1.4)
      CON – 13.4% (-36.6)
      LAB – 10.3% (+10.3)

    127. haud on the noo says:

      Ian Brotherhood : you’re politics are not dissimilar to where I was in youngerish days. A bit older now and a small, very, business owner/runner. If we employ anyone new theyd be £12/15 as an absolute minimum, I would never consider anything else.

      It seems I am in a very small minority among small businesses (mostly tossers in my personal eperiences).

      But my son 19 works crap job for minimum wage. Little future there.

      I agree 90% with your outlook.

    128. Lesley-Anne says:

      manandboy says:

      Saw advert on a First bus today claiming free school meals for Primary 1 to 3’s as a N Lanarkshire policy.
      It is of course a Scottish Government policy.

      That sounds very much like an invitation for a complaint to me man. 😉

    129. Chic McGregor says:

      Benefits to low waged people appear on the national accounts as contributions to the Welfare bill total, what they really are, are subsidies to the private sector. i.e. regressive taxation, aka neo-fudalism.

    130. Tam Jardine says:


      Great article.

      On page 10 and 11 of the report (click the link in the article) you can download the full report.

      There is a very abridged list of these 22 examples where MPs representing Scottish constituencies directly influenced the outcome. It seems like a mixed bag – it needs more investigation but I reckon there are 8 that are in the EVEL category ie where Scottish MPs have influenced a UK vote on a devolved matter that would not directly affect Scotland.

      Perhaps someone else could cast their eye over the list in the download and verify the figure. English MPS can hardly complain about Scottish MPs influencing a terrorism bill, for instance.

      So it looks very much like we are talking about the need for EVEL on the basis of 0.22% of votes?

      But maybe 1 instance is 1 too many for some. Just imagine how pissed off the tories would be if their MPS had the negligible influence we have over our own affairs.

    131. Dave McEwan Hill says:


      By election result from South Kintyre tonight (was held by SNP till Cllr Semple stood down)
      However this is a stoater in an area in which the Labour Party has had very substantial support and more than the SNP for many decades. Both Tories and Lib Dems beat Labour, all miles behind Armour the farmer, the SNP candidate. The SNP has not beaten Labour but replaced it in this part of Argyll

      South Kintyre by-election results
      John Armour has been elected as a councillor for the South Kintyre ward of Argyll and Bute Council following a by-election on Thursday 11th December.
      Mr Armour (Scottish National Party) was elected at stage 1 of the process, receiving 942 first preference votes.
      There were 1,515 valid ballot papers out of a total 1,522.
      The full results are as follows, with candidates in alphabetical order and the number of first preference votes they received:
      John Armour (Scottish National Party) – 942, elected at stage 1
      Charlotte Hanbury (Scottish Conservative and Unionist) – 203
      Michael Kelly (Scottish Labour Party) 156
      Joyce Oxborrow (Scottish Liberal Democrats) – 214

    132. Chic McGregor says:

      Good point Tam, well made.

    133. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Paula Rose –

      The mention of your name sparks many words in my heid, but ‘flippant’ ain’t among them.

      Your question? Here’s my best stab, in the circumstances –

      If you build something, and do it well, people can choose to support you – you return the favour directly by employing some of them, and indirectly by using the services provided by other neighbours. If you don’t? WalMart/Tesco/Morrisons etc etc will cut a deal with the local council, build whatever the fuck they like, and you, your family, friends and neighbours could end up with no choice at all. (Co-op on Arran, anyone?)

      All that ‘Black Friday’ nonsense was just an exaggerated version of what happens in every supermarket across the country every day at the ‘Bargain Bins’ – people biting one another to try and get closer to a flatscreen telly is not that different to half-starved pensioners elbowing one another out of the way to grab discounted pork pies. (There’s the makings of a great reality show right there…make them think there’s a discounted item in a Bargain Bin somewhere in Scotland with five hundred quid cash planked inside it…guaranteed mayhem every evening.)

      There was a cartoon in the Guardian a couple of years ago – a man at the Customer Service desk in Tesco asking ‘Do you do abortions?’.

    134. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @haud on the noo –


      My own lad is 15, and will be out in the world of work soon enough. If it was a choice of him leaving Scotland to travel, maybe pick up casual bar work abroad, or staying here, taking a Council ‘apprenticeship’ for £2.73 an hour? I know what I’ll be advising, if he even has to ask.

      None of us (well, few of us!) want to see them leave, but there’s not a single one of our weans deserves such treatment – I was earning more than that, as a 17-yer old, working in kitchens, and that was 35 years ago.

    135. David says:

      Chic McGregor @ 12:18, “neo-fudalism” – not sure if you meant it, but I like it!

    136. Chic McGregor says:

      Ian, I have four kids, two still here in Scotland but one in New Zealand and one in Finland. I would have liked nothing better than to say to them. if we had voted for independence, “Get back here and help make this country a great example to the World.” But not to be, for the moment.

      No way could I even countenance asking them to come back to the neo-fudalistic moral quagmire that is the UK.

      But one day… soon.

    137. Chic McGregor says:


    138. CameronB Brodie says:

      Chic McGregor
      I think you could have gotten away with that one. I thought it was your wit again, myself. 🙂

    139. Chic McGregor says:

      Sorry, must have been a Frudian slip.

    140. Neil MacKenzir says:

      @drawdeaddave ScotLab do vote as directed by London Labour.

      Further to suggestions re WBB2, if you decide to go ahead with one can I suggest crowdfunding enough to put one through every door in the country before the General Election?

    141. Conan_the_Librarian says:

      I like neo-fud-ilism Chic.

      Sums it up.

    142. Macart says:

      @Ian Brotherhood

      “I was earning more than that, as a 17-yer old, working in kitchens, and that was 35 years ago.”

      You too?

      Yeah, I’ve got two in their mid teens looking at their futures just now and damn I’d find it hard to convince them to find a career in Scotland just now. Both of them YES daft right enough, especially the eldest. Probably listens to his auld man rant too much. 😀

      On the small business support? Couldn’t agree more, well said.

    143. john king says:

      James D
      “Bear in mind that the SNP don’t vote on English matters. It might not make much difference to these percentages with just 6 members, but a possible 40-50 members not voting might skew those tables quite a bit and make a real difference.”

      The easy way to get independence is for (a hopefully) 40+ contingent of SNP MP’s to start voting on English only legislation while highlighting the realty of less that a quarter of Scottish legislation being passed without English interference,

      In other words make such a pain in the arse of themselves they’ll be glad to see the back of them!
      simples. 🙂

      Ian says
      “Where is Scotland going to be in another five years time should things not change?”

      Now there’s a question Ian,
      Murray Mcallum linked to a LPW blog he wrote in October about the tories attempts to remove the Human rights legislation that interferes with their right to resume rendition flights and generally ignore the fact they will be sending people to countries where they will face certain death,
      But what it doesnt refer to is OUR rights, us the people who sit in warm living rooms and express our democratic right of free speech, but, for how much longer?

      We always think of the disgusting treatment of people (who in some cases) innocent of any crimes at the behest of the USA and (lets not kid ourselves)the UK, but what happen when they get a little more brazen when the dont have the ECHR looking over their shoulders?

      Could our comfortable little world be destroyed by them removing our right to free speech ,what happens when its British subjects sent to places unknown for “special treatment”

      What happen when we on Wings start to disappear one by one?
      we sit and ask, whatever happened to so and so?
      I haven’t seen him/her post for a while,

      What happens when WE are deemed enemies of the state?

      Might WE wake In in a freezing cell in Kazakhstan listening to the torture of the person in the cell next door in the sure knowledge, IM NEXT?

      jus sayin sa’ll

    144. Ken500 says:

      Apprenticeships were always notoriously low paid. Pocket money. Families always had to give support but they are worth it in the end to well paid employment. Many tradesmen who are comfortably off today went through apprenticeships.

      Pupils in schools are doing 5 Highers in 5th year and less in 6th year. It would be better if there was more flexibility in the State system. Pupils could do 3 or 4 Highers in 5th year and two or three Highers in 6th year. It would help less advantaged pupils who could get a PT job. There is still a pressure on poorer households kids to earn. Many pupils drop out because of the work load of doing five Highers in a year.

      What’s the point of lower class sizes if students end up in £thousands of debt, and are put off further education. Labour policy.

    145. Mealer says:

      Bob Sinclair,
      Can we have a bit more info on that byelection?

    146. Mealer says:

      South kin tyre byelection

    147. Ken500 says:

      Aberdeen City are trying to get the credit for the third Don crossing. Sign up. Even though the Labour Party opposed it for years. Same with the AWPR. Unionist Parties opposed it for years. Blocked it and voted against it. The same parties are complaining about the construction plans not being speedy enough.

    148. CameronB Brodie says:

      “And I’ve kept yelling since I first commenced it, I’m against it”, sort of rational, erm… logic, erm…HORSEFEATHERS.

      Marx was a great philosopher. Groucho that is. 😉

    149. john king says:

      Ian Brotherhood says
      “End Capitalism Forever – Nae Merr Shagging!”

      I didn’t realise just how austere a life it is to be a socialists
      Kinda like this I suppose,

      any excuse 🙂

    150. john king says:

      Chic McGregor says
      “No way could I even countenance asking them to come back to the neo-fudalistic moral quagmire that is the UK.”

      Sometimes a hing jist works
      no more need be said. 😉

      On a more serious note,
      I hope Chic you are able to be reunited with your youngsters soon.

    151. Macart says:

      The National getting wired in about the CIA and the rendition flights today I see. Oh and Mr Ed taking a bit of a cuffing too in editorial. 🙂

      Nice to be able to have a read over the morning coffee again. 😉

    152. Bob Sinclair says:


      David McEwan Hill posted more details.
      would love to think this was representative of the Country as a whole.

    153. Tam Jardine says:

      Chic McGregor

      Thanks Chic. Most pertinent post of mine I have probably made and I post it in the graveyard shift!

      So, the EVEL stushie is based on at most 8 votes in 13 years on English laws directly affected by Scottish votes. Of course, had Smith devolved whole areas of legislation as occurred during the initial devolution settlement this could occur more frequently but the only significant change (to inc come tax) is tied into the budget which could hardly be split up.

      The SNP should be asking the prime minister for this number – I had no idea the figure would be so low and it is clear to me that this is being punted as an issue without basis in reality.

      The tail wagging the dug? Nah – the dug’s been wagging the tail all along.

    154. Sinky says:

      Would be Labour candidate defending “I knew nothing” Blair, Straw and Miliband over torture flights which used Scottish bases

      And what about the Secretary of State for Scotand?

    155. Martin Wood says:

      Anybody catch the advert for Jim Murphy for labour leadership on GMS this morning?

      Looks like the BBC are now trotting out “vote Labour in Scotland to make sure we get a Labour government”.

      Nice to know the BBC are still impartial.

    156. Stoker says:

      @ Cherry (10.49pm).
      No need for apologies.
      I thought that’s what you meant, just wanted clarification.
      As for the “Cambridge unit” i hadn’t heard or read anything
      about that and as far as i was aware it’s the ’39 Engineer Reg’
      who are based at Kinloss and are due to be for the next couple
      of years at least. But thanks for the clarification and info.

      @ DMH (12.23am).
      Great news to start the day Dave.
      I’m hoping my homeland (South Lanarkshire) will tell a similar story come May. As you’ll know it’s Labour territory with the SNP threatening to do something permanent for years. Slowly but surely. I know a helluva lot of folk back home are furious with the way Labour ran with the Tories pre-referendum and then helped them to deceive everyone with the fake last minute promises.
      I can only hope that anger transfers itself into anti unionist votes in May and if our traditional rivals and neighbours in North Lanarkshire can turn their backs on the red tory ("Tractor" - Ed)s then anything is possible.

    157. Will Podmore says:

      Minority outvoted by majority in a democracy! Shock horror.
      Try to divide people on an ethnic basis and you end up calling for a minority to outvote the majority.

    158. CameronB Brodie says:

      Tam Jardine
      I’ve been impressed with the sincerity of your posts. Your a right ‘solid’ bloke, IMO.

      We’ll need to get an Edinburgh gathering sussed, though probably not until after the New Year(?). No pressure. 🙂

    159. Bob Sinclair says:

      You know it’s a bad news day for the Unionists when Podmore pops his head up above the parapet.

    160. RMAC says:

      Hi Will, not working today or are your bosses now ok with you spending their time as an internet troll? The minority you talk about represent the majority in what is to all intents and purposes a country occupied by a much larger neigbhour, who then undemocratically impose their will upon them. And before you start about who lost the referendum think about the question that your heroes had removed from the ballot regarding devo max and the subsequent promises made when it became obvious that your heroes were about to lose their cash cow.

    161. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      OT and very late in the thread but,

      Ukania does not do torture, did not facilitate extraordinary rendition flights (they were shipments of cut flowers) and conforms to the Law.

      But is did train people how to torture.

      Hypocrisy writ large.

    162. heedtracker says:

      Minority outvoted by majority in a democracy! Shock horror.
      Try to divide people on an ethnic basis and you end up calling for a minority to outvote the majority.

      Hilarious Will Podmore! Majority defrauded by minority Will, see THE VOW fraud just for starters. Or why did our Imperial masters sign up to THE VOW fraud if not to cynically shyste the Scots, who are the majority, in Scotland and so on…

    163. HandandShrimp says:

      Try to divide people on an ethnic basis and you end up calling for a minority to outvote the majority.

      What does that even mean? The vote was in Scotland for the people of Scotland to decide. Ethnicity had nothing to do with it.

    164. Jim says:

      BBC Scotland morning call plumbing new depths today debating whether the use of torture is acceptable. They are calling it “advanced interrogation techniques”. What the hell is going on in this country when they can have a debate on whether it is wrong or not, god help us all!

    165. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Mealer at 7.51

      Full official announcement on South Kintyre by election at 12.23. By election caused by resignation for personal reasons of previous sole SNP representative in a three member ward. Area covered to the south of Campbeltown.
      Resigned SNP councillor came in in second place in 2012(behind popular Tory candidate) with around 17% of the first preferences so last night’s result is startling though winner is a very popular local farmer and a recent member of the SNP. Labour did not contest the ward in 2012 though the Labour Party has traditionally had high support in the Campbeltown area.
      SNP reviving in Argyll and Bute despite some troubles last year which cost them council leadership

    166. HandandShrimp says:

      “Advanced interrogation techniques”!

      Bloody “advanced interrogation techniques”!

      They used sleep deprivation in the 17th century to extract confessions from witches.

      These people are criminals, pure and simple.

    167. Fiona says:

      So Labour MP’s vote with labour governments and against the coalition? Quelle surprise!

    168. Tam Jardine says:

      Will Podmore 

      In this case the Conservatives are pushing for EVEL ie dividing on an ethnic basis so it is not crazy to look at what the implications would have been in the last 13 years. Would you agree with the figure of 8 instances where this shocking injustice has occurred?

      And if you do agree, would you also agree it has been overstated somewhat?

    169. R-type Grunt says:

      When Unionists start talking of dividing people’s you have to admit they do know what they’re talking about. Past masters.

    170. Mealer says:

      Thanks for the info.In council by elections the quality/popularity of the candidate carries a lot of weight,but this is a great result for SNP all the same.Council byelection results since the referendum are all over the place,but the general trend is obvious.

    171. Jim says:

      HandandShrimp says:
      “Advanced interrogation techniques”!

      Bloody “advanced interrogation techniques”!

      They used sleep deprivation in the 17th century to extract confessions from witches.

      These people are criminals, pure and simple.
      They are absolute scum and the BBC now trying to justify/Normalise torture makes me sick to the core of my being. Hundreds of innocents have been tortured which means they had nothing to give bar enjoyment to the people inflicting those horrendous dark age punishments.
      Maybe some of those morning callers advocating torture, saying water boarding and other sickening methods are okay because they don’t kill them, should experience it for themselves to see if it meets their standards of acceptability. Hell mend them.

    172. Boorach says:

      Does anybody have the result of the Elgin by-election?

    173. Roll_On_2014 says:

      David Miliband exposed as being behind cover-up of Britain’s secret involvement in torture of terror suspects

      Miliband (David) had tried to use the court system over a period of six months to block publication of the fact that MI5 had connived in the torture of one suspect, Binyam Mohamed, a former British resident who had been detained in Pakistan in 2002 on suspicion of having attended an Al Qaeda training camp.

      Three times, (David) Miliband went to court to obtain Public Interest Immunity certificates (which exclude official documents from public view) to try to keep the truth secret about his torture in Morocco. In the process of concealing MI5’s dirty secrets, the Foreign Office ran up a taxpayer-funded legal bill of £213,000.

      But Miliband failed. In a landmark ruling in February 2010, the Court of Appeal effectively accused MI5 of complicity in torture and a culture of disregarding human rights.

      So what was the deeply compromised Miliband trying to conceal?

      The court documents said that Binyam Mohamed had been subjected to ‘cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment by the U.S. authorities’, in which the British intelligence services had been complicit.

      The irony is that David Miliband now runs an international human rights charity. As director of the International Rescue Committee, he earns £300,000 a year.

      Apologies for the source

    174. handclapping says:

      They are counting this morning.

    175. Stoker says:

      Boorach says:
      “Does anybody have the result of the Elgin by-election?”

      Counting still underway apparently. Very low turnout.

    176. Macnakamura says:

      They are absolute scum and the BBC now trying to justify/Normalise torture ……..
      Only heard a part of Morning Call but it sounded to me that Kay with an e was saying that the actual details of the treatment should not be mentioned.

      Today it should have titled Morning Call It Something Not So Nasty.

    177. Boorach says:

      @handclapping, @Stoker

      Thanks both

    178. gus1940 says:


      Readers will be pleased to know that the gentleman from Woking who pollutes the Comments on Herald on-line with anti Independence nonsense with each comment containing as many instances of ‘Alex Salmond’ as possible has today broken his record with 12 instances of ‘Alex Salmond’ in an 11 line comment.

    179. No no no...Yes says:

      Moray Council by Election:

      Elgin City by election turnout:1938 votes, 20.9% turnout

      posted at 10:27am

      Very poor turnout, the lowest since 1995!

    180. SquareHaggis says:

      Counting this morning…

      I read about this regarding a by-election just after the referendum.
      It stood out that the votes were not to be counted until the following morning.
      A security flaw if ever there was one.
      What’s to stop the votes being tampered with during the night? It did not say anything about the security of the ballot boxes, just like during the ref.

      Who runs by-elections and will it be the same format for the GE 2015?

      Scot gov needs to tighten this up IMO.

    181. Roll_On_2014 says:

      Elgin Election:

      First round votes

      Forrest(green) 77
      Forest eliminated

    182. bookie from hell says:

      is South kintyre first by-election since #smithcommision published?

    183. With the pro-Independence/SNP surge in Scotland since the Referemndum, and now the imminent melt-down of the Stormont Assembly – clearly Westminster is losing the plot across the UK.
      Still, they will not listen and the blue, yellow and red Tories seem intent on the same-old, same-old.

      This General Election next year promises to be the dirtiest and most-interesting ever.

      We have to re-double our efforts to be rid of this bunch of “merchant bankers”. (euphamism).

    184. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “can I suggest crowdfunding enough to put one through every door in the country before the General Election”

      You can certainly suggest it. I’d advise kicking it off with a sizeable donation at the same time, because it’d cost the business end of half a million quid.

    185. Roll_On_2014 says:

      Socrates MacSporran

      Slip of the keyboard there… I am sure that bankers starts with a ‘W’ in this instance.

    186. Jim McIntosh says:

      Watched in amazement at Douglas Murray on ‘This Week’ last night justifying torture by using the scenario of “what happens after another attack in the UK when the public ask, why didn’t the security services stop this”.

      When Portaloo said “at least some of the people who were tortured are still alive”. Oh dear ‘some’ of them. This was as justification that torture is better than drone strikes. As if there is only a binary option.

    187. Jim McIntosh says:

      Anyone else having the problem over the past day or so that posts are only showing up in bunches every 10 minutes or so.

    188. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Chic McGregor (neo- fudalism) as well as WBB 2 the Rev gonna hiv tae produce a Wings Dictionary for the masses,the amount of new words since the start of the Referendem campain for exceeds the new wording in the Oxford dictionary.

      And one day Chic your sons will be back staying in Scotland.

    189. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Jim McIntosh its been happening for a while now Jim some of my posts other week were about 15mins.

    190. Tam Jardine says:

      CameronB Brodie

      Thanks mate. There seem 2 be 2 types of posts on Wings – 1) new information or analysis and 2) pure comment. You excel at posting in the first category which is much rarer and more useful. I very ocassionally say something new but its usually the 2nd type!

      Definitely need Wings Edinburgh in the New Year. Need to get ideas off topic for dates and venue soon.

      I am just waiting for a response from Will Podmore to my straightforward questions up the thread. Both Will and I work I believe so I will give him the benefit of the doubt though his post was at 9.17 am so he does manage to check the threads and comment within working hours!

      Will Podmore 

      Would you agree with the figure of 8 instances where this shocking injustice (Scottish MPs influencing an English vote, 8 in 13 years) has occurred?And if you do agree, would you also agree it has been overstated somewhat?

      Simple enough questions?

    191. No no no...Yes says:

      O?T but important!

      SNP Kirsty Reid wins Elgin North by election with 850 votes.
      Added to the Argyll and Bute result, this is encouraging!!!

    192. Rigmac7 says:

      SNP win Elgin by-election

    193. Macandroid says:

      Category 2 … Pooling and sharing of resources

      Thought it was – Fooling and Shafting

    194. Stoker says:

      This one is for our Unionist lurkers (particularly Slabberites).

      On hearing of the SNP South Kintyre victory Christine Anderson says:

      “Long may it continue. After 38 years a labour voter i will vote SNP for the first time and will continue to do so until Scotland is an Independent country.”

      Take note you dirty red ("Tractor" - Ed)s, this lady is just one of many.
      Don’t just take my word for it, go compare membership figures.

      Sunday morning (11-12) tune in to Radio Clyde 2, Forth2, TayAM,
      Northsound and West Sound2 for Scotland’s Talk-In featuring Nicola Sturgeon.
      Further details in link above.
      Can’t see any reference to Borders Radio!

    195. Croompenstein says:

      Ah Will I wonder if you do us a favour and jump in your car and drive up to Scotland. You will drive happily on six lane motorway until you are near the border then the shit begins. Take as long on the A1 to get from Newcastle to Edinburgh as it just took you to get from the Midlands.

      Drive from Edinburgh to Glasgow on the ‘M’8 a dilapidated dual carriageway. Why not traverse our famous death road the A9 road up to the oil capital of Europe don’t hit Aberdeen at rush hour though no city bypass. Why not travel down to our main ferry ports at Cairnryan and Stranraer on a horse and cart road clogged by HGVs.

      Cut across another of our death roads the A75 to Dumfries and get yourself back on to the M6 and six lane motorway all the way home.

      The unionists call it pooling and sharing. And don’t come out with the old roads are devolved pish as the English motorway infrastructure was well in place before the SP reconvened

    196. Will Podmore says:

      As Balaargh noted, “Scotland is getting its way 25% of the time but with only 9% of the total number of MPs.
      That means we are punching above our weight by almost 300%!” So not so discriminated against, really.
      RAMC asserts, “The minority you talk about represent the majority in what is to all intents and purposes a country occupied by a much larger neighbour …” Oh, so you’re a colony, are you? Militarily occupied by an invading neighbour? Unreal.
      If you were a colony, yes, I’d support your right to national liberation. But you aren’t.
      The vote in Scotland was indeed decided by the people of Scotland – heedtracker insults the people of Scotland by writing that they were defrauded. Gullible, are they? The great majority who voted against splitting our country made up their minds to do so months before any ‘vow’ was made.

    197. CameronB Brodie says:

      Tam Jardine
      Thanks very much. Nice of you to say.

      Will is probably at work, though may also be gathering a reply to me on the conservative/lanour thread, changing his kecks, or hiding in a cupboard. 🙂

      Re. Night out – your the man with experience, so I be looking to you to get the ball rolling in OT, whenever. 😉

    198. Croompenstein says:

      @Will – The great majority who voted against splitting our country made up their minds to do so months before any ‘vow’ was made

      Sorry Will I wasn’t aware you were up in Scotland canvassing and gauging the mood. You seem to be forgetting the poll the weekend before the referendum which put Yes in the lead. It was the first official poll to do so but I don’t think it takes a genius to work out what was contained in the hidden secret poll which caused Better Together to go in to fear overdrive and the vow to be constructed.

      So it’s a bit disingenuous of you to make that statement without having been here on the ground, I will tell you now that the vow and some extra curricular activity by the Establishment swung the result.

    199. RMAC says:

      Finished work Will or did the boss leave already allowing you to return to your trolling? A colony would sum it up perfectly as all of the real power is held in a foreign country. Regarding foreign military assets, have you been to Faslane, I have. The WMD’s based there are not Scotland’s and are there against the wishes of the overwhelming number of Scots.

    200. Will Podmore says:

      Sorry, Croompenstein, that I didn’t meet you when I was up in Glasgow just before 18 September. I remember seeing hardly any Yes stickers – in fact I saw far more ‘Out of the EU now’ stickers.
      ‘some extra curricular activity by the Establishment’ – oh, do tell us, please, please give us all some evidence – or is unsupported allegation the best you can do?
      RAMC, Westminster is not the only place in Britain where power resides. It is also exercised from boardrooms across the country. Capitalism rules us, and it rules us by dividing us. The Tory magazine Spectator named Alex Salmond Politician of the Year not because of his skills but because he collaborates in the ruling class scheme to keep us divided and ruled. He and Cameron cooked up the referendum, which, whatever the result, was bound to weaken the unity of our country and our class. By only letting the Scottish people a vote, it assumed the point at issue. And even then, the separatists lost. If Scotland were really a colony, you would have voted by a large majority to separate, as have all other colonies when given the chance (pretty rarely).

    201. heedtracker says:

      We are a colony Will Podmore. If it wasn’t for stuff like the BBC’s Project Fear camping or THE VOW fraud, we’d be long gone and free of people like you, like the quick brown fox. Next time:D

    202. Croompenstein says:

      @Will – Sorry, Croompenstein, that I didn’t meet you when I was up in Glasgow just before 18 September

      Sorry Will, did you drive up?

    203. RMAC says:

      Hi Will, your reply is more of a “whataboutery” than a considered reply to the inhabitants of a nation undemocratically ruled from its largest neighbour who’s assets are funneled off for the benefit of a few and who’s wishes are routinely ignored by its Imperial masters in the aforesaid neighbouring country. You appear to have based your “If Scotland were really a colony, you would have voted by a large majority to separate, as have all other colonies when given the chance (pretty rarely” reply on a vague knowledge of the political and social situation in Scotland and a poor grasp of Scottish history.
      Like most trolls you just like stirring the pot to get a reaction.

    204. CameronB Brodie says:

      Lol. 🙂

    205. heedtracker says:

      This could just as easily be you Will Podmore and all your Tory boy ilk.

      Scots voted NO coz their not a colony, Scots oil is too too much of a burden, so let your far more safer and secure neighbour take the strain of trillions and trillions in black gold, its too volatile for silly little Scotland and who’d protect you from nuclear terrorists in hot countries who want to behead you all on your way back from the shops, silly little Scotland, and so on… Will Podmore/BBC/all UKOK media.

    206. Balaaargh says:

      Hang on, has my completely nonsense and irreverent comparison used as a genuine argument for the success of Scottish MPs within the union?

      If it weren’t for the fact it came from a known troll, it would be quite difficult to determine whether the poster was being sarcastic or has not grasped the idiom of comparing apples to oranges.

    207. Croompenstein says:

      I wonder if Will had been around in 1914 he would have referred to Ireland as ‘our country’… just wunnerin

    208. Tam Jardine says:

      Will Podmore

      “As Balaargh noted, “Scotland is getting its way 25% of the time but with only 9% of the total number of MPs.That means we are punching above our weight by almost 300%!” So not so discriminated against, really.”

      Whilst you have avoided my simple questions today, rather than concede that EVEL is almost a theoretical issue rather than something significant under the current arrangements or indeed the Smith recommendation tweaks, I see now that your mind was focused on a more exalted argument.

      I see now that we are over represented! With only 9% of the total MPS we should be (ideally) getting our way only 9% of the time! Poor old England – in the last parliament they got their own way 99% of the time with their 82% of MPS.

      If we are 300% over represented as you claim, poor old England is merely 120% overrepresented: what a scandalous disparity!

      It’s over represented 280% less!

      On that basis it only seems fair to not only impose EVEL but also reduce the number of Scottish MPs to 23.6 to level the playing field. Personally I favour reducing the number even more dramatically.

    209. Paula Rose says:

      That plodmore is so boring – can we not treat him as an extra long paragraph break?

    210. Tam Jardine says:

      It’s over represented 280% less!

      Of course, that should read 180% less, or one hemisphere, or 6 cubits, or 3 verst…

    211. Tam Jardine says:

      Paula Rose

      But Paula, you are interrupting me while I destroy him with my mind. It is as simple as that. Je surpasse

    212. CameronB Brodie says:

      Paula Rose & Tam
      A true useful idiot and he’s mine, mine, mine? I’ve catched him, so I’m keeping him. 😉

    213. Balaaargh says:


      Are you sure he’s yours, doesn’t Natasha have dibs?

    214. Tam Jardine says:

      CameronB Brodie

      But Cameron, whilst I have been holding Will in an intellectual suplex, Queens have just beaten Rangers at my beloved Palmerston. All is well in the universe.

      Will of Podmore, I release you… go forth in peace

    215. CameronB Brodie says:

      I didn’t actually see that one. Pop a link up if easy, and I’ll have a laugh when I get back from the shops.

      Stone, paper, scissors at least? It did take me a wee while (and a bit of planning), to get him where I wanted him. That has to count for something. 🙂

    216. CameronB Brodie says:

      Tam Jardine
      No comment Tam. 😉

    217. Tam Jardine says:

      CameronB Brodie

      I’m just gonna hang around this thread waiting for Podmore. It’s comfortable – I’ve made it my own. Will and I are going to work it through… arm wrestle… maybe even Cumberland wrestle…

      Let’s build a new country in this thread Will, you and me. Podland or Jardinistan. All I need is to understand why EVEL is such a big deal when it has only affected English legislation a maximum of 8 times in three thousand six hundred votes in Westminster.

      And why you think it is unreasonable to highlight how powerless Scotland is? Scotland voted no by a small margin and under duress…

      There was no waterboarding, sexual abuse, “rectal feeding” or “rectal hydration” or sleep deprivation for 180 hours, yet under duress nonetheless.

      Why is it reported that Scotland is influencing English legislation in devolved areas when that is not the case and in fact Scotland is largely controlled by legislation from England. We are subjected to falsehoods Will. It does your integrity no harm to answer my questions from earlier – in fact it would do you credit.

    218. CameronB Brodie says:

      Tam Jardine
      Well if that’s the way you want it. Go Tam go. 🙂

    219. HYUFD says:

      In the current Parliament there is a Tory majority while most Scottish MPs are Labour so it is not surprising that Scottish MPs are in a minority, however with even more powers on domestic policy and tax devolved to Holyrood that is less of an issue. However, were there again to be more Labour MPs than Tory MPs at Westminster but more Tory MPs than Labour MPs in England, as occurred in 1964 and Feb 1974, then EVEL would be extremely important for English domestic legislation

    220. Will Podmore says:

      Dear heedtracker, you assert, as if it were self-evident, that Scotland is a colony. RMAC also seems to believe this. Please could you name one colony where the GDP per head was as close to the colonial power’s as Scotland’s is to the rest of Britain. Algeria? Vietnam?
      To Croompenstein, no I didn’t drive to Glasgow, I took the plane. Was that wrong of me?
      Tam, “Would you agree with the figure of 8 instances where this shocking injustice (Scottish MPs influencing an English vote, 8 in 13 years) has occurred? And if you do agree, would you also agree it has been overstated somewhat?” Yes. Yes.
      Evel is yet another divisive ploy by the deceitful, devious Cameron.
      Heedtracker insults the majority of Scottish people when he puts into their mouths the self-pitying words he wrote. Just like Nationalist Derek Bateman who insulted the No-voting majority as idiots.
      Croompenstein wonders whether if I had been alive in 1914 (!) I would have called Ireland our country. If I had been, and if I had been me, I’d have been a consistent anti-imperialist and supported Ireland’s right to self-determination, as Lenin and the Bolshevik party did.

    221. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      But the whole Better Together Campaign was aimed unerringly at idiots, Will, and caught most of them if the referendum returns are to be believed. We had a coalition against Scotland of those with vested interest in maintaining the status quo and those they could persuade by scaremongering,distortion and lies to support them in their comfort.

      We had a typically Tory campaign then paid for by the Tories and their friends but fronted by the Labour Party.
      Lets see how that works out.

    222. Croompenstein says:

      @Will – I’d have been a consistent anti-imperialist and supported Ireland’s right to self-determination

      So why not support Scotland’s right to self determination??

    223. Will Podmore says:

      Croompenstein, I do not support Scotland’s right to self-determination because Scotland is not an oppressed colony. I note you have all failed my challenge – “Please could you name one colony where the GDP per head was as close to the colonial power’s as Scotland’s is to the rest of Britain.”
      All parts of Britain are scarred by capitalism’s inevitable effects of poverty and inequality.
      Dave McEwan Hill proves again that disappointed Nats are ruder about Scottish people than Unionists are!

    224. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Since when did being an “oppressed colony” become a necessary condition to justify a normal desire for self determination?
      What utter mince.
      Cupidity and stupidity are not mutually exclusive and Better Together were well aware and managed to terrify a large number of ill informed people with a campaign of mendacious scaremongering bizarrely about the financial dangers of cutting ourselves away from the most heavily indebted nation in the world.
      As I said “aimed unerringly at idiots”

    225. Tam Jardine says:


      Thanks for your answers to my previous questions – I didn’t realise we were on the same page on EVEL. I feel like we are getting somewhere.

      With regards to the question of Scotland’s status as colony or not colony, although it is not an term I use, the definition of colony has zero to do with gdp as far as I can tell.


      a country or area under the full or partial political control of another country and occupied by settlers from that country.

      The first and second conditions are demonstrably true – Scotland is a country and is under partial political control of her larger neighbour. Is Scotland “occupied” by settlers from the rest of the UK? That seems to depend on usage of the term “occupied”. I am not sure if the term necessitates the use of force or even overwhelming numbers to apply.

      Like I say, it’s not a term I use, nor is the term “settler” having grown up in the eighties when it was used in ways I would not touch with a bargepole.

      Hong Kong was a colony with comparable GDP to the UK – am I wrong?

      Anyway – have a guid night Will and thanks again for your response.

    226. Tam Jardine says:


      Further to my last post- there is a pretty interesting website that allows you to compare GDP per capita and all manner of other data over historical periods-

      Worth a look. The GDP of Hong Kong and UK were comparable in the period direcly before Patton withdrew wearing that head-dress. Although again it all comes down to interpretation- when I did a wee graph I thought initially UK was well behind between 1992 and 1997 but if the Y axis had not been adjusted they would look very similar.

      Interesting stuff. Of course Hong Kong was handed over which is not something I wish for Scotland! I’d like the reins to be handed over to the people who live here and our representatives.

    227. Tam Jardine says:

      Anyway, its getting so congenial over in this old thread, I canny help feeling someone should get a round in

    228. Tam Jardine says:

      Will Podmore

      Hong Kong

      I’ve left it a week and I know now.

      I beat you with Hong Kong.

      The End.

    229. Will Podmore says:

      A colony is defined as “a country or area under the full or partial political control of another country and occupied by settlers from that country.”
      So Scotland is not a colony, since it is not occupied by settlers from another country.
      Tam claims that it is ‘demonstrably true – Scotland is a country’. That is the point at issue, and the vote on 18 September showed that even the minority of Britons who were allowed to vote did not agree that Scotland should be considered a separate country.
      Hong Kong, like Singapore, is a city-state, an entrepot, and most unusually for a colony did indeed have a GDP per head comparable to the colonial power.
      The history of the British Empire shows that the colonial power almost always gained economically from its colonial possessions.

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