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Wings Over Scotland


Help for Scottish journalists

Posted on March 22, 2014 by

Alert readers will know that one of this site’s key themes for the last several months has been examining the true meaning of Labour’s pledge to “pool and share resources” within the UK if Scotland votes No – pointing out that as Scotland is one of the wealthiest parts of the UK due to its oil resources, “pooling and sharing” means diverting more Scottish money to poor parts of England and Wales.

(Northern Ireland already gets the biggest share of UK spending.)

And those same readers will also have noted our ongoing puzzlement at the continued failure of any Scottish reporters or broadcasters to question Labour on that point. But is it possible to solve this unfathomable mystery?

We’ve been scratching our heads as to why professional journalists might be unable to make this staggeringly obvious connection, and the only thing we could come up with was that perhaps Labour hadn’t publicly acknowledged anywhere that Scotland was in fact the third-richest region of the UK, after London and the SE of England.

Luckily, the publication of the party’s “Devo Nano” document has fixed all that.

wealthiestscotland

The image above comes from the full final report of Labour’s Devolution Commission, specifically pages 70 and 71. We’ve added the red underlining in the first paragraph. It couldn’t be any less ambiguous – “Scotland is the third richest part of the UK”.

So when the Scottish Labour leader tells us that her vision of Scotland within the UK “is about redistributing [wealth] out of better-off parts of the United Kingdom into poorer bits”, as she did this week when being interviewed about the document, there can’t possibly be a shred of doubt remaining about what that means.

Previously it wasn’t Labour who said that Scotland was one of those “better-off parts”. Now it is. From the party’s own mouth, we’re told that Scotland is one of the wealthy areas from which it wants to take money and give it to the rest of the UK.

So with two days of the party’s Scottish conference still to go, and the media and Scottish Labour in the closest and most concentrated proximity they’ll be at any point between now and September, we wonder how long it will be until a Scottish journalist takes the opportunity to ask Johann Lamont or Anas Sarwar the question:

“Are you sure that telling Scots you’re going to send all their money to England if they vote No is really a dead-cert referendum-winning strategy?” 

We’re going to start holding our breath right now.

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    163 to “Help for Scottish journalists”

    1. jon esquierdo says:

      I have just read todays Daily record and all aboot Labour. The party is full and running over with fuckwits and the same applies to the journalists

    2. Croompenstein says:

      This doesn’t square with the subsidy junkie myth. But there it is in black and white now any ‘proud Scot’ can be in no doubt we are being royally shafted in this ‘union’

    3. Frost says:

      Maybe when you’re a real journalist who acutally knows some politicians then you’ll understand why they don’t question the Labour Party;-)

    4. Les Wilson says:

      Admirable idea, problem is, as we look around us we see neglect,all around the country. Towns are looking run down, charity shops are taking the places of decent stores, our infrastructure is abysmal, food banks sprouting like weeds, child poverty abounds in our RICH land.

      For me,Charity begins at home.
      In the future when an Independent Scotland has fixed it’s ills, we can then be selectively magnanimous to others. However for once in 300 years, we need to meet our own challenges first.

    5. rabb says:

      Unfortunately the media will continue to bowl Scottish Labour slow deliveries from the pavilion end.

      It would be great though to see just one paper grow a set of balls and really take them to task.

      They seem to be in denial of what the rest of Scots have worked out long ago. It makes them look like fucking idiots to be honest.

      Their declining circulation figures back this up 🙂

    6. Red Squirrel says:

      And yet some voters still fall for this rubbish. MSM has an awful lot to answer for, not least complicity in allowing this stuff to go unchallenged. I’m not convinced history and consumers will judge this kindly.

      BBCparochial now reaching new depths. Will really enjoy seeing these newsreaders choke out news of a yes vote!

    7. Croompenstein says:

      It’s now as plain as the nose on your face..they aren’t even doing the Fagin ‘got to pick a pocket or two’ they are coming in the f*cking front door and lifting oor stuff..

    8. caz-m says:

      Mags Gard-ham at the Herald thinks Scottish Labour are moving left to outflank the SNP.

      http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/wider-political-news/scottish-labour-move-left-in-bid-to-outflank-the-snp.23759147

      Are all Scottsh journos taking some kind of mind-altering drugs.

      When will the penny finally drop with these jokers that no one is listening.

    9. gordoz says:

      We’ll wait a very long time for a shift in position from our fine press core automatons…

      The big barrier to journalists here is the nepotism factor
      where Labours concerned. Oh and the Andrew Nicholl factor of who pays the wages, surely you remember that one Rev ?

      Did anyone suffer the misfortune of glancing yesterdays Sun ? FFS boak.

    10. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Actually the Daily Record coverage is mid paper and not as over the top as I had expected. The SUN comprehensively pans Labour’s proposals and pours ridicule on them.
      The Herald gives them big licks but the readers’ letters in the Herald I think rather better describes the position of most of its readership.

      I wonder does the Herald understand that deploying Magnus Gardham to insult its well informed readership is counter productive to the unionist cause and that organs like the Record and the Herald spouting mince in support of Labour is doing nothing more than allowing Labour to miss all the signs of its self destructing course of action.

    11. Murray McCallum says:

      The net flow of funds out of Scotland does not impact Westminster MP’s salary or expense claims (it may actually support them).

      Also, New Labour Scottish MPs have pretty much given up on the most vulnerable in our society. They do not even bother to turn up to vote on key measures like abolishing the bedroom tax.

    12. gordoz says:

      Well at least info manipulation it not all affecting voters.

      When asked, “If the UK parties do make pledges regarding further devolution in the event of a No vote, do you trust them to deliver on those pledges?”

      42% said they did not trust Labour to honour their more powers promises, 28% trusted the party. Nearly one third (30%) did not know. From Panel base Poll / NNS

      Smile Labour the people are watching (and listening)

    13. G H Graham says:

      I completely concur with the proposal to demand Scottish journalists to ask the right questions.

      But there is a phenomena within British media that means they no longer widely participate in investigative journalism.

      Anyone with half a brain could have taken Osborne’s March statement this week & torn him to shreds because of the fantasy numbers he used to make his economic forecasts all the way to 2019.

      Instead, the media fawned over growth figures, puffing that they were better than our industrialised neighbours. As if this were the secret to healthy wealth distribution & a recovering economy.

      Despite it being common knowledge that Scotland is a cash cow for the UK exchequer, the Scottish media still loves to trumpet the idea that we are still too economically poor to survive independence.

      The remaining British media continues the myth that we are therefore subsidy junkies & need the broad shoulders of the UK to survive.

      Not only is this completely at odds with reality, all the media continues to fool itself that we are entering a healthy phase of economic recovery.

      The evidence tells a different story. While productivity has made some gains, the wealth created from it increasingly is absorbed by corporations rather than individual workers.

      Incomes have lagged RPI for years & are unlikely to catch up for years. And domestic fuel costs have soared well above inflation for years too.

      Yes, the stock market has boomed but low income people & the poor are rarely able to take advantage because they have no disposable income left to use to speculate. Raising the ISA limit to 16k is laughable. It might as well have been 66k because most in Scotland will never reach the target as long as average wages barely reach 25k.

      The national debt continues to climb, expected to reach 1.6 trillion before this decade is over. The deficit has not been reduced and will instead hit 111 billion before this year is over.

      Meanwhile, Osborne is pinning recovery on a south east housing bubble, while the rest of the country watches our wealth continue to flow south. His economic growth forecast is laughable. Exports continue to slide down as a proportion of global trade & the Pound remains 20% lower in value against major Dollar currencies compared to 15 yrs ago.

      Only low interest rates keep the whole pack of cards glued together. But that has hammered savers plans for a decent retirement income. Once interest rates start to shift upwards, an economic disaster will unfold before our very eyes.

      Scotland must extract itself beginning in September. Yes, a currency union makes sense initially, but we must issue our own currency as a matter of urgency.

      Britain is broke & we must break away now.

    14. caz-m says:

      Daily Record – David Clegg.

      Scottish Labour – Paul Sinclair.

      BBC Scotland – John Boothman.

      These three men still think it is possible to save the Union.

      That is why they have so many meetings together.

    15. James123 says:

      In one of Alan Little’s reports on the BBC during the week he asked a woman how she was going to vote. Her response was that she was going to vote no because she thought Scotland couldn’t manage on its own. It’s amazing how many people are still under the illusion that Scotland is a poor wee country. No prizes for guessing who’s fault that is.

    16. Atypical_Scot says:

      Wow, Scotland’s done so much better than most of the UK out of this union.

      That’s because the rich parts don’t redistribute their wealth fairly?

      Am I reading this right?

    17. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

      @james123

      You hit the nail on the head. The fear factor is still the biggest problem. Of course it’s derived from years of brainwashing, by providing misinformation, resulting in an inferiority complex. Hence the I’m voting no because I don’t like Alex Salmond brigade.

      It’s easier to say that, than I’m feart!

    18. Eric says:

      What we really need to see here is Scotland broken down into areas. Lets see what Glasgow and the Western Isles looks like compared to the rest.

      Also, the lines suggest that income has fallen, while GVA has risen across the country.

    19. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      As somebody asked the other day why is inflation of food prices, goods and services bad while inflation of house prices good?

      It is actually because people can deceive themselves that they are well off because their house value appears to continue to rise (they actually really don’t anymore, inflation sees to that) and they will be more inclined to vote Tory. But this is not a big factor in Scotland.

      A percipient lady, commenting on the Dunoon Hustings on the For Argyll site, describes Labour as “Tories with red ties on”

      I helped to organise that meeting and it was a triumph for the Dunoon Observer who put it on but for me it signalled a very real change in the national debate. I believe that if it was held tomorrow we would now narrowly win it. We sit on a tipping point which could run very strongly for us from now on. I don’t think many of the general public are listening to Better Together anymore. This is crucial. They have told too many lies and have been found out.

      How wise indeed for the wily Alex Salmond to allow them two years to comprehensively foul themselves

    20. Nemo says:

      @G H Graham – exactly! Unfortunately when develeraging starts to happen (by interest rates going up) there are going to be a lot of casualties. We in Scotland can do little about it except by voting YES and establishing our own currency. Currency union may make sense in the short term, though even that is debatable, but we need to get away from the car crash that is going to happen in England.

      It is not pleasant, but there is really no alternative, to coin a phrase.

    21. heedtracker says:

      How do we “give” them nothing but make it look like we’re really “giving” them a lot?

      Leave it to us. Yours honestly, BBC in Scotland.

    22. RosiePosie says:

      Heard Anas Sarwar pushing the “subsidised Scotland” line on R5L last night. Then a wonderful woman called Morag, from Dundee, chewed him up. It was braw.

    23. Fiona says:

      I have already stated why I object to this approach in another thread. So I won’t repeat those arguments.

      I have no doubt that Scotland is prosperous and it is important to point out the facts to those who fear we cannot survive economically if we choose independence: and there are many of those

      But there are also many who do not object to “sharing and pooling” if is done to enhance equality: I am one of them and the argument as presented here does not appeal to me in any way

      What is important is the fact that the Labour party, like the Tories and the Libdems, are cynically pretending that that is a policy that is pursued within the UK, when the truth is quite the opposite. Scottish wealth is used to increase inequality and to ensure a pool of the unemployed the better to entrench the plutocrats in power.

      The Labour party document repeats that lie on almost every page. But we have seen what they have done and we have lived with the reality of their neoliberal agenda. They are not social democrats; they are not socialists; they are not even moderate tories. They are plutocrats just as fully as are their so called opposition.

      If we do not vote for independence we have no chance at all of “sharing and pooling resources” no matter what these people say: for they are not the party they once were and people are increasingly aware of that. They continue to rely on their history and to appeal to a tribal loyalty which does not look to closely at what they do but votes because of what they used to be. That tribe is diminishing, so far as I can see: but not because their aspirations have changed. It is rather because their aspirations have remained intact despite thirty years of propaganda.

      Certainly point out the reality of Scottish wealth. But do not then go on to promote independence because it will mean “sending our money to england”, for I have no objection to support for poorer regions; and that is what this stance appears to oppose. Rather point out that that prosperity is being used to promote the impoverishment of the many all over the UK: and that will continue unless those resources are controlled and used in a completely different way. Which cannot happen unless we vote for independence. It is sad that it means the rest of the UK will not benefit directly from the change of direction – to me it is, anyway. But none of us will benefit if we do not vote yes: we will get more of the same shameful economic policy because TINA. Well TINA is a lie, and indirectly the demonstration of that lie may yet benefit the people in the rest of the UK. It is certain that they too have no chance if we do not vote yes

    24. Eric says:

      We must assume that these figures include Oil. It would be interesting to see the charts again without Oil and comparing areas in Scotland with areas in England.

    25. Eric says:

      But it still doesn’t make complete sense to me. If Scotland look so ‘healthy’ on paper, why is the reality so different?

      Do we lose so much benefit of GVA (money going south) that it becomes a meaning less statistic to measure Scotland’s actual wealth.

      Maybe GVA is a measurement of the potential (or independence) wealth. What is Scotland’s real position?

    26. Proud Cybernat says:

      I don’t actually have a problem with the resources of wealthier parts of the country being redistributed to help poorer parts of the country. It is a very laudable and progressive ideal.

      Unfortunately that is not how the UK works regardless of how SLAB want to portray it. How can it be? The UK is one of the most unequal societies in the developed world so where is the wealth of the wealthier parts going ’cause it ain’t going to the poorer parts because they are still poor and becoming poorer still.

      No–the truth of the matter is that the wealth of the riher parts (i.e. Scotland) is being sucked right into the sky-rocket of big business in the dark star that is the City of London.

      The wealth of the UK isn’t redistributed at all–THAT is the lie to SLAB’s laudable claims. The rich are getting richer, the poor becoming poorer. Scotland needs to break the cycle and becoming a beacon of true social democracy to the rest of the UK. We can, should and must.

    27. Robert Kerr says:

      Eric,

      Please don’t assume.

      It is spelled ASS U ME.

      Clarify please Rev!

    28. al urquhar says:

      Rev. Stu
      Typo alert

      “Help for Scottish journalists”

      “Help FIND…..

    29. Eric says:

      Is there a formula to measure the benefit a ‘region’ derives from GVA? I don’t believe that GVA is currently a good measure of how ‘real families’ in Scotland are compared to Sothern equivalent.

    30. ronnie anderson says:

      Rev & Team, Stop threating to commit SUNNYSIDE, Blaw oot Breeth

      in,ther,s a long , long road tae go an its a Wyndy wan,the

      Beatle,s sung aboot it.

      Who are these so called experts that Johann keeps mentioning on

      the Taxation advice,do we know,I,ve never heard any names

      mentioned,will she be challenged tae spit them oot, Naw.

    31. Squirrel Tower says:

      Good Idea Eric, as long as the rest of the UK figures exclude the oil revenues too, and also any VAT, Corporation Tax from companies in Scotland etc from Londons figures. Would also be useful by impossible to exclude all the money the rUK pumps into London to pay for centralised services such as the BBC/Foreign Office never mind ALL that money/services centred around Government at Westminster….

    32. Squirrel Towers says:

      Good Idea Eric, as long as the rest of the UK figures exclude the oil revenues too, and also any VAT, Corporation Tax from companies in Scotland etc from Londons figures. Would also be useful by impossible to exclude all the money the rUK pumps into London to pay for centralised services such as the BBC/Foreign Office never mind ALL that money/services centred around Government at Westminster….

    33. Croompenstein says:

      @Dave McEwan Hill – How wise indeed for the wily Alex Salmond to allow them two years to comprehensively foul themselves how true – was discussing this with a colleague the other day and he was wondering why the imperialists agreed to the referendum and I explained to him that they had wanted a snap ref 2 years ago and No would have won by a landslide and they could have put the Scots back in their box.

      But the FM knew the longer game would allow the truth to out and people to find out for themselves and as probably predicted the No side have tripped themselves up more times than Zola Budd

    34. Caroline Corfield says:

      Eric, I believe since the oil revenue is ex-territory or whatever the phrase is, that is used to strip it out of Scotland’s revenue stream that these figures do not contain the oil and gas revenue, they are acknowledged as far as I can see as coming from the ONS, so I would certainly still give them a bit of a wide berth.

      As to redistribution, I think you’ll find that the wealth generated as shown on these graphs is already redistributed under the union from Scotland to the Treasury who mostly spend it on government pet projects like London and big sticks for international clout.

      What is interesting is that the other more prosperous regions of the UK of GB and NI do not technically redistribute their income, because they are not devolved regions of England and frankly any redistribution to or from them is entirely in their own hands given that a) the SE of England is the bulk of the electorate and b) they actually get the parliaments they vote for.

      It’s not about redistribution, pooling or sharing, it’s about controlling the ability to do those things and everything else.

      Imagine that instead of you putting money in a collection tin, the charity simply accessed your credit cards in your wallet and chose a nominal amount to deduct – how happy would you be, over the situation where you could CHOOSE to put money in their tin or not?

    35. Grouse beater says:

      Stuart

      It’s the patriot card.

      It always was and always will be the soul of their appeal for the union: think of others before thy self.

      Honour our war dead, bail out our banks and financial institutions, subsidise our wars, our armaments, Olympics, and infrastructure, and accept these fish in gratitude we toss at you in thanks.

      Once you brush aside the personal attacks on our elected government, our culture; when you laugh at scaremongering, all you are left with is an appeal to British patriotism.

      It will hold meaning for some, for people like me, always Scottish by definition and pride, it has absolutely no resonance whatsoever.

      The worst aspect of Labour’s appeal is it comes with stern warnings of retribution.

      We are handled no better than a dog: do as instructed or get walloped on the nose with the end of the leash!

      Treated with contempt, the most loyal dog will soon learn to withdraw from its master’s command.

    36. bobdog collie says:

      So is there not a Scottish Labour party any more? because I cannot see any self respecting Scot or voter even considering voting for this branch of London Labour masquerading as representing the people of Scotland . The Labour MP’s I can understand don’t want to lose there dipping of their snouts in the westminster gravy train so will do everything in their power to prevent a yes vote , but the MSP’s who are closer to the issues in Scotland , or should be , I wont include the numpties who are there due to political correctness , these MSP’s should be standing up for proper social justice for their constituents and thinking about how best to help them, but instead they doff their hats to Milliband bowing their way backwards as they leave his presence to carry out his instructions regardless how they damage Scotland
      These instructions include “you may raise your taxes but don’t lower them below the rUK level as that will make you more competitive and disadvantage rUK” and we don’t trust you on corporation tax and Airport duty so that stays reserved
      What a load of timewasting shysters

    37. JLT says:

      I said something very similar yesterday morning in the post ‘Counting with Johann’. For the last two years, many of the Scottish journalists such as Ponsonby, Brewer, Bird, Magnusson, Taylor and quite a few others seemed to have nailed their colours (as well as their own journalistic integrity …if not their careers!) on the back of Scottish Labour producing a manifesto that would win Scottish hearts and minds within the Referendum debate.

      However, in these last few weeks (and I would say since Osborne came up to Edinburgh to tells the Scots that there would be no currency union) that these same reporters are now beginning to feel a sense of unease.
      Alarmingly, the Scottish people have not blinked. They have not buckled either with the threat of Scottish companies apparently ready to upsticks and hoy it down to London. That left the reporters looking at Labour, and murmuring, ‘Right, hit them with the Devolution proposals. Give them some extra powers. Put maybe one meaty proposal in there, and win them over and thus, end this debate once and for all.’

      What they have got has left them not only reeling, but has left them open-mouthed and annoyed sure as hell I would be if my journalistic integrity has been open to question for quite some time now).

      If anything, once the general population begin to hear through word of mouth that Devolution is dead in the water, then the ‘Yes’ vote is finally going to hit that 50% mark. The ‘Undecideds’ are more likely than not now, to vote ‘Yes’.

      Now …if I was Ponsonby and Co, I would be quietly seething. Time and again, they have been told by Lamont, Sarwar, Curran, et al, that Devolution proposals would end the debate. Not anymore.

      Lamont has embarrassed herself time and again this week in every interview by waffling absolute drivel that has left each reporter slack-jawed and eyes popping out of their skull. They have bet the house and careers on Scottish Labour, so to hear Lamont regurgitate absolute mince, will have infuriated them. Sarwar does the cause no favours either by looking to stoke the sectarian flames by announcing that Labour, should they get back into power, will repeal the Sectarian Act, thus allowing the poisonous vile that has blighted Scotland for generations to be reintroduced. How can Taylor, Bird, Brewer defend that?

      Someone in Labour is going to get savaged …and when it happens …it will be car-crash TV. After that, expect every Labour politician to take to the hills or bunker down for the inevitable victory of the ‘Yes’ vote.

    38. Big Jock says:

      Scotland exists to save England from itself.That’s how Milliband and Lamont think of us.A country of 5 million sending revenue to a country of 60 million.Meanwhile the Scots have the lowest life expectançy in Europe.Are we crazy!No just generations of subordination,abuse,lies and brainwashing.A leech leaves its host just enough to survive.

    39. Eric says:

      Unlikely, but just suppose there are two identical consultancy companies, one in Scotland and one in London. They both have the same number of employees, turnover, and productivity.

      They both produce £10,000,000 of consultancy work as output. That means they both have the same GVA.

      In London they probably pay more for their offices and their workforce salaries. (Technically, the London company should be less competitive)

      The UK Government takes the same taxes off the two organisations.

      But it then advantages one over the other through grants, infrastructure and London centric policy.

      Simplistic, I know. But decades of London advantage has created and continues to create an uneven playing field.

      GVA as a measurement of the wealth and health of Scotland just doesn’t compute.

    40. Big Jock says:

      Yes Eric and then the fundamental question Scots have to as themselves.Nation or region of greater Britain.If you vote to remain a region then don’t moan about London is my response to unionists.You get what you vote for and can’t have it both ways.Power resides in the capital ofa foreign city 400 miles away from our capital.

    41. TheItalianJob says:

      @Dave McEwan Hill
      @James123

      A lot of DR readers and by default labour supporters don’t understand or are unwilling to seek out places/info where they can obtain/find the true economics of Scotland currently and as an Independent Nation. All are rigidly sticking to the labour speak (to use a mild word)/party line and believing we would be far worse off on our own.

      In discussions with some voters (mostly no’s) they have complained to me about the length of the campaign. However since this is an monumental decision for the Scottish people it’s taken the best part of 2 years to get all the facts on the table so people can see the true benefits of going it alone. Given that the support for Independence was always around 25-30% and now it’s over 40% is due to the sterling efforts being made by the Yes campaign such as we are seeing now in every town up and down the breadth of Scotland.

      Cameron thought he was onto a good thing by calling the SG bluff for a referendum but now they see that the people of Scotland are’nt too stupid or wee and feart and are asking all sorts of questions and getting the real honest facts. Him and his BT cahoots are now in panic mode and are all disjointed and all over the place. Each offering different aspects of devo nothing for a No vote.

    42. kalmar says:

      It’t not that objectionable an aim, on the face of it. Just that anyone living in Scotland would be mad to vote for it! Not out of selfishness either: you don’t support a high living gambling addict by letting them fritter away your money too.

    43. scottish_skier says:

      What’s ‘housing cotss’ (second diagram)?

    44. Eric says:

      @ Caroline Corfield

      “Eric, I believe since the oil revenue is ex-territory or whatever the phrase is, that is used to strip it out of Scotland’s revenue stream that these figures do not contain the oil and gas revenue, they are acknowledged as far as I can see as coming from the ONS, so I would certainly still give them a bit of a wide berth.

      As to redistribution, I think you’ll find that the wealth generated as shown on these graphs is already redistributed under the union from Scotland to the Treasury who mostly spend it on government pet projects like London and big sticks for international clout.

      Thanks, If this is the case, then what I said is true. These charts and GVA generally are not realistic economic indicators of Scotland’s wealth, only of potential (or Independence) wealth.

      Hard to believe that the figures don’t include oil; although your comment makes absolute sense. But then its hard to imagine the figures with oil on top.

      As I said many times before, we still don’t have the economic ‘forensic analysis’ that fully explains the ‘efficiency’ of Scotland’s economy.

      By ‘efficiency’, I mean the extent to which the residents of Scotland do or do not benefit, relative to similar countries (or other regions in UK)

    45. As Scotland is 3rd richest, why are Labour not promoting more redistriubution from the 1st and 2nd richest parts of the UK to the poor? Because it doesn’t fit with their agreement with tory coalition on austerity and now Osborne’s pension plans. They are as busy as tories in diminishing the role of the State. Labour in Scotland are trying to face many directions at the same time and simply going in circles. Attempting to place themselves to the left of the SNP but sooking up to the SE of England and the City of London. Totally untrustworthy.

    46. heedtracker says:

      BetterTogether Press and Journal Milliband speech/vote NO headlines for today, “Milliband says London will control top tax rate” so vote NO.

      This is presumably all a cunning plan to reach out to high earning oil expro voters in Aberdeen, that they wont get taxed any more in this union, so vote no for UKOK. In same edition P&J gives detailed thing about how Aberdeen and north east pays for everyone else, so vote NO. At least P&j’s trying to be clever clever vote NO propagandists but its a bit weird considering Lamont and co go nuts for 50% paye and council tax hikes across the board. A tangled web we weave, when first we practise UKOK propaganda at the Press and Journal.

      Other P&J news, “Salmond accused”

    47. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @JLT –

      Hear hear.

      It’s one of those Mexican stand-off sketches: the politicos, the MSM, and the Scottish electorate.

      Who’s sweating?

    48. Les Wilson says:

      O/T Scottish Independence is watched more than you realise, and not without it’s admirers. Here is a Yank with a view on it, he has a good insight of our reasons, and it’s possible effects on the USA.

      http://thesovereigninvestor.com/2014/03/18/scotlands-independence-glimpse-americas-future/

    49. ronnie anderson says:

      Sos Rev O/T moment.

      She,ll be coming round the mountain, when she comes

      She,ll be coming round the mountain, when she comes

      She,ll be coming round the mountain, speachifying

      in Fingers n Thumbs,an we,re no deef nor dumb.

      On a more serious note, all that hand movement Johann

      is very confusing to any young children,learning Sign Language,

      please stop it.

    50. Eric says:

      Standard of living refers to the level of wealth, comfort, material goods and necessities available to a certain socioeconomic class in a certain geographic area. The standard of living includes factors such as income, quality and availability of employment, class disparity, poverty rate, quality and affordability of housing, hours of work required to purchase necessities, gross domestic product, inflation rate, number of holiday days per year, affordable (or free) access to quality healthcare, quality and availability of education, life expectancy, incidence of disease, cost of goods and services, infrastructure, national economic growth, economic and political and stability, political and religious freedom, environmental quality, climate and safety.

      The standard of living is closely related to quality of life.[1] In 2012, the Human Development Index ranked the top six countries for quality of living as: Norway, Australia, United States, Netherlands, Germany and New Zealand.[2]

      Standard of living is generally measured by standards such as real (i.e. inflation adjusted) income per person and poverty rate.

      Other measures such as access and quality of health care, income growth inequality,

      Disposable Energy (people’s disposable income’s ability to buy energy) and educational standards are also used.

      Examples are access to certain goods (such as number of refrigerators per 1000 people), or measures of health such as life expectancy. It is the ease by which people living in a time or place are able to satisfy their needs and/or wants Source: Wikipedia

      Forget the rhetoric that says ‘we are the 6th richest nation’ etc etc Its all pretty meaningless.

      Standard of Living is what we need to understand. How does Scotland compare to other countries and London and the South East.

    51. Eric says:

      @Ronnie

      “She,ll be coming round the mountain, when she comes”

      I am impressed. Fair play. Then there is the ‘six white horses’.

      My wife usually just falls asleep. 🙂

    52. Patrick Roden says:

      It’s not surprising that the BBC found an auld wifie who is voting No because Scotland can’t survive alone.

      A lot of people get all their information from BBC/MSM, and they that do will be convinced we are TWTPTS.

      The tables from the latest polls show that among the over 55’s No went up 6% after the currency/pension scares and it’s this group who are the ones who depend most on BBC/MSM for information.

      This was not enough to stop Yes gaining a 5% overall boost though, because the same scares that frightened the over 55’s, had the effect of making under 55’s angry and causing a whopping 11% to turn from No or DK to ‘Yes’

      So the BT/Labour project fear, is working at one level, but is failing more at another.

      In other words their goose is cooked and the more the Daily Record or Scotsman print these cringe worthy articles, the more they are making people angry.

      Which is nice 🙂

    53. Midgehunter says:

      For a fairer distribution of wealth we first of all need indy for Scotland so that we can re-industrialise the Scottish economy and expand it.

      If we really do want to help the “forgotten” parts of our poorer neighbors and expand our trade then we should consider financing and building a motorway and expansion of existing rail links to North East England, the greater Newcastle/Middlesbrough area.

      It’s roughly the same distance away as Aberdeen from Edinburgh and would directly benifit from improved trade and travel.

      I don’t think they they see their future as being very bright knowing where the Westminster investment is being sucked into.

    54. Gonnaejustsayaye says:

      Was out campaigning at Govan X this morning, The only people voting No are the old Orange Vote. Labour have lost connection with the poor and those thrown on the scrapheap . The amount of people this morning voting Yes is very encouraging it just not yes it is an enthusiastic Yes . There is a section who are still a wee bit frightened but their heart says yes.
      We can win this

    55. TheItalianJob says:

      @Les Wilson

      Interesting article on the referendum debate from an American and in effect repeating the +ve facts for Independence as we know them. It also repeats my earlier thread ref when Cameron agreed to the referendum support for Indpendence was under 30% and now it’s above 40% and rising.

    56. frankieboy says:

      Its not all about money. Lest we forget.

    57. ronnie anderson says:

      @Fiona12.06, good post Fiona,the Nth of England stand to gain most from Scottish Indy,more than South.

    58. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      Just filled in an online poll from YouGov regarding press coverage in Scotland and media preferences, seemingly tied to Scottish politics.

      I gave them both barrels and then reloaded. Pity I got rid of the Mack 10 I picked up in East Berlin (joking, only joking)

    59. BuckieBraes says:

      @Fiona

      Your point is well made. There is a danger that we may find ourselves seemingly arguing against ‘pooling and sharing’ in a way that makes us look petty and selfish.

      Few of us here, I’m sure, would object to genuine redistribution of wealth even across national borders; but what we are hearing from Labour is a hypocritical con. At the end of January I found myself in Margate – in the south-east of England and reached via the high-speed rail link from London – yet the obvious poverty of the place took my breath away.

      Is Scotland’s ‘pooled and shared’ wealth that’s being sent south helping the poor of Margate? Under the UK’s neoliberal ‘Blue Tory/Red Tory’ government cycle, is it ever likely to? No and no; and that’s the argument we should be hitting the Labour hypocrites with. Meanwhile, is any of this helping our own poor? No again.

      Our wealth makes the Metropolitan rich richer, and for the last 20 years Labour has bought into this. They accuse the SNP of being right-wing: well, they’d know all about that.

    60. liz says:

      Also re CU, money is the only thing that Gideon et al understand and they assume everyone is as greedy as they are.

      Therefore with his smirking attitude that day on his flying visit to Edinburgh,he thought he’d played a blinder, then it turned out he hadn’t.

    61. caz-m says:

      We might have finished third in the UK rich list diagram, but don’t beat yourself up about it.

      Because I know a table that we would come first in.

      It is the “London can take all our money, we don’t care” table.

      Seriously Rev, has there been any diagrams put together that shows who re-distributes the most revenue back to London?

    62. joe kane says:

      Wealth pours out and poverty floods in.
      ps
      A great wee 5 minute video –
      Maryhill Foodbank
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfzhz7E4xa4

    63. Clootie says:

      It will make a great poster for the summer stands. Any experts out there who can tell me how to get a better quality file?

    64. Eric says:

      @Caz-M

      “Seriously Rev, has there been any diagrams put together that shows who re-distributes the most revenue back to London?”

      Per capita, Scots generate the most tax on alcohol, tobacco and gambling… We get don’t get the most back per capita.

      That means that we generate tax (and who cares what people spend money on) and don’t get the benefits in our cities.

    65. Les Wilson, good article. Just shows you, Scotland’s future is causing ripples.

    66. Eric says:

      Power centric London ensures that the jam lands on London and flows to the South East. And its been hidden for years. Only social media unlocked it.

      Regions of England are figuring it out now.

    67. CameronB says:

      caz-m says:

      Are all Scottsh journos taking some kind of mind-altering drugs.

      Elvis
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vcrx2GpeqAI

    68. Clootie says:

      I look at the top 3 areas of the report.

      Only 2 of them feel like wealthy areas as regards infrastructure / housing / wages etc.

      The Labour party didn’t seem to do much distribution during their last 13 years in power from the areas they were trying to win seats in.
      Is it a case of taking the Scottish vote for granted and also appear as “greed friendly” socialists in the South.

    69. Eric says:

      @Clootie

      “Any experts out there who can tell me how to get a better quality file?”

      It ‘zooms up’ considerably. Quality is very good.

    70. Clootie says:

      Eric

      I thought it looked a little blury on full A4 but it could be my eyes 🙂

    71. tartanfever says:

      Following on from Eric’s post at 12.54 regarding the Human Development Index that’s put together by the UN.

      The information is freely available for anyone to access, you can have fun here with an interactive map of the world, just scroll over each country and the info will pop up.

      http://hdr.undp.org/en/countries

      Some current ratings:

      Norway 1 st
      Australia 2nd
      USA 3rd
      Holland 4th
      Germany 5th

      Ireland equal 7th
      Sweden equal 7th

      Denmark 15th

      France 20th
      Italy 25th

      UK 26th.

      It’s a really useful tool, bookmark it in your browser to pass on to undecided’s as info.

    72. Thistle says:

      OT
      Live stream event from the RIC Mass Canvass, Drumchapel on Sunday about 1pm

      If you can’t make it to help out then tune in. We are using an iPad with 4G mobile technology to give us the connection.

      Please, if you know anybody in Drumchapel area who would be willing to walk around with us chatting about area please get them to contact us at liveindependence [at] gmail [dot] com

      See RIC event details: https://www.facebook.com/events/605311716233567

      Live stream via: http://new.livestream.com/IndependenceLive

      Scottish Independence Live Events
      http://www.facebook.com/ScottishIndependenceLiveEvents
      http://www.youtube.com/IndependenceLive

    73. art1001 says:

      There is no contradiction between ‘pooling and sharing’, ‘fairness’ whatever you want to call it and independence. Independence allows this transfer of wealth, aid, charity – whatever you want to call it to be put under proper democratic control. The Scottish Government could decide on which areas of the fUK would be assisted. Aid being conditional of course on them getting rid of their nukes and illegal warfare.

      The Lamont Labour party can appeal to voters to give all Scottish oil and whisky revenues to Westminster to ‘pool and share’ as they see fit. That 85% for London and the rest can share the scraps.

    74. CameronB says:

      Fiona
      I would look to invest in the English utilities, if possible, but only once we are up and running.

    75. Linda's Back says:

      Most people would agree that prosperity is more than just the accumulation of material wealth, it is also the joy of everyday life and the prospect of being able to build an even better life in the future. The Prosperity Index is distinctive in that it is the only global measurement of prosperity based on both income and wellbeing.

      Legatum Prosperity League for 2013 ranks the top ten nations in the world as
      (generally small independent European nations without the broad shoulders of the UK)

      1, Norway
      2, Switzerland
      3, Canada
      4, Sweden
      5, New Zealand
      6, Denmark
      7, Australia
      8, Finland
      9, Netherlands
      10, Luxembourg

      http://www.prosperity.com/#!/

      Would you rather be part of the fourth most unequal country in the developed world with foodbanks, increased child poverty and a massive £1.6 trillion debt run by discredited London institutions (such as MPs, House of Lords, the Met, BBC, press and City bankers), or take responsibility for your own affairs like other prosperous small social democratic nations in northern Europe which will bring thousands of new jobs to Edinburgh?

    76. caz-m says:

      CameronB 1.36pm

      LOL That’s not far away from the vision I have of Scottish Journalists, because they are losing the plot big time.

      O/T

      Wee Johann and Co on shortly.

      BBC 2 Scotland 2pm live from Perth.

    77. Eric says:

      @TartanFever

      And where is Scotland in this?

      And I cannot help wondering where London would be on their own?

      The biggest problem on these islands is the economic imbalance and inequality.

      The Westminster strategy has been to improve London and the SE, to the detriment of the regions. It means that vast tracts of the UK are not as productive as they could be. A shocking waste of resources and talent.

      Cumulatively this adds up to a country at 26 in the hit parade.

    78. ronnie anderson says:

      @Eric 12.58, Eric whitever you do dont open that Book on

      ( six white horses ) we,ve got enough to cope with Apocoliptic

      Labour are more than ah kin cope with, never mind the ither wans.

    79. Jim T says:

      @caz-m 1:22pm

      No need to look far. Single entry table with heading of “UK Treasury”

      Looking ahead to a successful 18th Sept, what will be the focus of the MSM at that point? I can imagine no congratulatory headlines but doom and gloom about how Scotland has “abandoned” the rUK and that it’ll be all our fault that the future for our English (they’ll continue to ignore Wales & NI) friends will be bleak. They’ll then focus on the negotiations and start banging on about “punishing” us by encouraging the Westminster lot to follow through with their pre-referendum threats to impose as many barriers to progress as possible.

      The only uncertainty is the timescale for them to have the dawning realisation that they will actually NEED us to help the rUK extract themselves, over many years, from the quagmire of debt that will then be evident.

      I hope that we can somehow manage, at the earliest opportunity, to set up some form of treasury and have the 19th Sept 2014 be the date from which we will be entitled to hang on to any and all revenues raised in Scotland.

      Screw the lot of them.

    80. cearc says:

      Ronnie beat me to it a couple of comments back.

      Just who are ‘our experts’ that she keeps waffling on about.

      If they had any standing surely she would name them?

    81. tartanfever says:

      Eric,

      Yeah, of course not being a sovereign nation in our own right we’re lumped in with the UK.

      It would be an awful lot of work trawling through various data to get some indication as the HDI report covers such a wide range of factors.

      Needless to say it’s main benefit at present is to use it for it’s value against the No campaign when they keep going on about the 6th biggest economy malarky.

      As for London, I don’t think it would do that well. It may have some very rich people, but it has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country, there are some extremely poor areas which tends to lower factors such as education, life expectancy etc.

      I always think of London as a place that shows the extremes of wealth and poverty.

    82. Graham says:

      Wealth distribution, equality and fairness are laudable aims. But it’s the bare-faced hypocrisy of Labour who had 13 years to do something about it and instead oversaw a huge increase in inequality and wealth re-distribution to the already wealthy. So now they blame the SNP for inequality. It’s the Stalinist re-writing of history syndrome and Goebbels notion that the bigger the lie the more credible it is.

    83. ronnie anderson says:

      Help for Scottish Journalists.

      Help can be given

      will it be received

      by those that practice

      to Deceive,

      Their tangled web

      they made their Ain

      Scotlands loss is

      their Masters gain

      We,ve got the Brain

      and the body

      Into oblivion they,ll

      aaw go A NAE-BODY.

    84. Juteman says:

      It’s weird seeing Stan without Ollie.

    85. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

      @joe kane says:
      A great wee 5 minute video –
      Maryhill Foodbank
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfzhz7E4xa4

      Thanks for this. It’s really great.
      I have posted links to it from a number of today’s newspaper online comments threads.

    86. Alba4Eva says:

      Jid J-Lo just say she wanted to rip my clothes off? ….Ooohhh Shudders!

    87. CU Tommy says:

      Scotland may be one of the wealthiest parts of the UK in terms of earnings, but it is where that wealth goes after it has been earned that should convince everyone in Scotland to vote YES in the referendum.

      http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/where-does-scotlands-wealth-go/

    88. bookie from hell says:

      hers me thinking all labour policies were 2021,2025

    89. CameronB says:

      Sorry, but just in case people think I posted to Fiona Apple, and are polite avoiding the post. Why has this long-known reality not already gone Streisand?

      Fiona Apple

    90. Les Wilson says:

      Just switched on the TV and am listening to Jola’s speech.
      Full of poison for the SNP, who she seems to forget was democratically voted in. She spouts the values, the sharing of resources, all quite well written and delivered quite well, to loud applause.

      Pity it is a load of mis-truths.Going on about how great Slab is and what they have achieved, no mention of poverty, no mention of food banks. All great Slab, aren’t we wonderful!

      Pity their actual record shows how they have let Scotland down very badly. What a load of shit she is speaking.

    91. HandandShrimp says:

      CameronB

      My daughter is a big Fiona Apple fan 🙂

    92. CameronB says:

      HandandShrimp
      Who is she??? 🙂

    93. HandandShrimp says:

      Les

      Johann has allowed her hatred of the SNP to define who she is. She cannot talk politics without recourse to hatred. It makes one wonder if she would have anything to say if the SNP did not exist.

      Being defined by one’s enemy is not an easy place to escape from.

    94. gordoz says:

      Labour have lost the plot. What a bunch of numpties.

      If todays mince is served up by the press as something new then its a new low for them. How can this be inspirational & sensational stuff. Nothing new from Lamont; its pitched like a regional TUC meeting.

      I hope the undecided watch this crap nothing of substance at all. Hand power to councillors (Like Aberdeen: now there’s a vote winner?)

      We hate the SNP blah,blah, blah (narrow british nationalism) nothing more. Very embrassing for Scottish socialism.

      Priority no. 1 dismantle the system that delivers SNP government. After No vote.

      Introduce – Project Dismantle Scotland.

    95. CameronB says:

      HandandShrimp
      No need to reply, not unless you want to of course. 🙂

    96. SquareHaggis says:

      @Ronnie

      pan stick DULUX paint face

      Truly cracked me up wi that one 😀

      Reminds me of this on so many levels.

      http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=oZxwXKb4R1A

    97. gordoz says:

      Did she just diss the Scottish Parliament ???

      ‘I hate Scotland but I love Britain ? ‘
      (Yay crowd goes wild ?)

    98. geeo says:

      Good god,Lamont has been droning on for what feels like hours without actually saying anything.

      Saved the best till near the end, she is going to bring honesty back to Scottish politics.

      I dont know whether to laugh or cry.

    99. Juteman says:

      I’ll agree with what she said at the end. Scottish Labour are a party of ambition. They do have very ambitious politicians.

    100. Albalha says:

      To be fair to J Curtice just said the Lamont speech was a “policy free speech”.

    101. gordoz says:

      Prof Curtice agreed she did diss Scotttish parliament.

      Also asking why no mention of Cuts Commission ??

      Speech devoid of policy pitched for Hall only. Will not resonate with country.

    102. bookie from hell says:

      Labour disowns Scotland before/after 1707

    103. The ItalianJob says:

      @joe kane

      Very moving video on foodbanks in Maryhill.

      How can this be in a modern day society like Scotland.

      Getting people into work with a decent wage and removing foodbanks needs to be a priority in an Independent Scotland.
      It won’t happen overnight but has to one of the first things we need to tackle.

    104. gordoz says:

      The Curran on now telling Scots – No, no, details just vot No and then we’ll tell ye whit yur no gettin later.

      More of the same pish.

      Taylor to his credit is challenging her on this garbage?

    105. Albalha says:

      Any Labour folks taken in by the idea that the Labour Party of today is ‘socialist’ need to remind themselves of P Mandelson’s words when he said he was,

      “intensely relaxed about people getting filthy rich as long as they pay their taxes”

      After all 13 years of New Labour resulted in a more unequal society accelerated by the Con/Dems.

    106. Juteman says:

      I’ve just realised what that conference reminded me of.
      It was like a scene from a an old POW movie. The scene where the prisoners dress up as women, and put on a show. It had that same sense of sadness and futility, and ignoring the reality of their situation.

    107. ronnie anderson says:

      @SquareHaggis2.56,Ah wiz thinking mair alang the lines of

      Tiny Tims face paint, Tiptoe throu the Tulips will you

      Pardon Me, not at all Never, Never, Again JOHANN. lol

    108. Albalha says:

      In interview with B Taylor J Lamont admits their proposals are merely empty rhetoric, when asked for the detail she responds,

      “these are our values it’s what motivates us” and then explains they need to be discussed more, conversations need to take place and then they will come up with the detail in their next manifesto.

      Aye right.

    109. gordoz says:

      Labour in Scotland

      ‘Scotland is not a country; Britain is our country’

    110. ronnie anderson says:

      Red Ed wants tae drive tae social justice, walk along any street

      in this country Ed an see the lack of said justice.

    111. CameronB says:

      The press must have been distracted. Squirrels?

      Mecha Streisand
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcnQFPbXvyQ

    112. gordoz says:

      McLeish confirms (again) he is a unionist and will vote No.
      ‘Labour proposals dissappointing’ in some sense but useful marker for more to come ?

      Save it Henry and bye, bye. A lost cause.

    113. Giving Goose says:

      The Labour Party in Scotland, wrapping itself in the Union flag in a display of patriotism while letting down the very people it is supposed to be looking out for. Here’s my view on Westminster and these Elitist pseudo patriots.
      http://whitefeatherclub.wordpress.com/2014/03/22/a-patriot-writes/

    114. ronnie anderson says:

      Hendry McLeish ripping the Devo proposals to shreds

    115. john king says:

      Dave McEwan Hill says
      “How wise indeed for the wily Alex Salmond to allow them two years to comprehensively foul themselves”

      How wise indeed for the wily Alex Salmond to allow them two years to comprehensively soil themselves

      There fixed that for you 🙂

    116. Andy-B says:

      Scotland has had its assets drained from it for the past forty years, and now Johann Lamont is reaffirming this commitment, yet at Labours Perth conference,they applaud her for it, why?.

      Could it be the average Labour punter, is dillusional,and actually believes the rhetoric, of Lamont and Co, or do the majority of Labour supporters still believe Labour has the welfare of the less fortunate at heart.

      When does belief, become self denial, sadly many SLAB supporters, may never realise it. As you say Rev, surely Johann Lamont’s continuation of draining assets from Scotland, is a spectacular own goal for SLAB.

    117. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Juteman –

      It had that same sense of sadness and futility.

      Brilliant.

    118. bookie from hell says:

      Tory’s ditching renewable energy–complete opposite to Scottish position

      http://www.theguardian.com/business/economics-blog/2014/mar/20/george-osborne-budget-kill-renewable-energy-revolution-tax-break

    119. muttley79 says:

      My guess is the MSM in Scotland will never ask SLAB about what they mean by pooling and sharing resources.

    120. Ian Mackay says:

      Venice votes for Independence.
      http://archive.is/7DQnP

    121. Andy-B says:

      O/T Rev I do apologise.

      Suggs of the band Madness, real name Graham McPherson, who’s dad is Scottish has said, “Scots would be crazy to leave the union.”

      Thankfully, independence will take us (One step beyond)Westminster’s reach.

    122. ronnie anderson says:

      Ah think I,ll cash in ma Sun Life private pension,& invest it

      in big boy/girl Pampers, Red,Blue,Yellow,sos aboot the yellow

      thats the Dieorear

    123. Albalha says:

      Well Severin Carrell didn’t watch the same speech as me he thought it was ‘a very strong speech’.

    124. gerry parker says:

      @john king.
      I ruined a perfectly good Mr Kipling’s French fancy there – Oh, and another keyboard as well!

      🙂

    125. john king says:

      “It’s one of those Mexican stand-off sketches: the politicos, the MSM, and the Scottish electorate.

      Who’s sweating?”

      What? like this you mean?

    126. Croompenstein says:

      Oh Johann – not one mention of nuclear weapons and the abuse of our environment..not happy!

    127. HandandShrimp says:

      Hi Cameron

      Sorry went out to the shops, Fiona Apple is songstress, very good but a wee bit strange and arty…as indeed is my daughter.

    128. fluffnik says:

      So, when Milliband says he’ll “govern like Thatcher” he speaks the truth:

      Rob Scottish wealth to produce an illusion of competence.

    129. Flooplepoop says:

      A lot of people are missing one major export, our people! We train them to a very high standard and give them a good grounding in lif and due to the policies of many Westminster governments they have to move away. I would actually say this was our greatest export.
      In an Independant Scotland , hopefully , this would be less of a problem. The drain on our human resources far exceeds any other natural resource we have.

    130. Flower of Scotland says:

      The BBC website showing the drivel of a speech by J Lamont! BBC reverting to kind!

    131. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Here’s someone who wears even more make-up than JoLa, and talks a lot more sense:

    132. goldenayr says:

      Flower
      Perhaps the beebs posting,of lamentables badly read script[speech],on their website is a good thing?
      The more that see,it the worse it gets for her.

    133. handclapping says:

      @Ian Brotherhood

      Did you notice how he had the same hand movements as she?

    134. msean says:

      Pooling and sharing means YOU’RE PAYING.Meanwhile,those who say we couldn’t manage on our own are probably the same tory types who say you need to take more personal responsibility.

      Thing is,when you take personal responsibility and take a closer look at the books,then they panic and say,you aren’t good enough,pooling and sharing is good for you,and anyway we are all a blinkered ‘one nation’. That sounds like a Thatcherite kind of saying to me anyway.

      We have poverty and unemployment in Scotland to fix,and independence is the next natural step in the attempt to sort that out. 300 years is a lot of brainwashing to overcome in a couple of years,but it can be done.

    135. handclapping says:

      Bugger, too late for the Rev. He’ll have died of asphyxiation by now, but what about the rats? Who will look after the rats? Will nobody care for the rats?

      But seriously, I’m all for our “foreign” aid budget being spent helping Ulster and the North-East as well as Malawi. At least it will be our choice and not up to those Westminster folk to spend on Olympics and Domes as their contribution to pooling and sharing.

    136. caz-m says:

      Am not sayin it was a long speech but, when she started I decided to go and have a lie down and read “war and peace”, I then cooked to well done steaks and then decorated the livin room.

      When a finished, a turned the telly back on and this lunatic was still rantin and ravin about how shite it was being Scottish.

      The Labour Party bullies and gangsters don’t like it up em’.

    137. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

      @Ian Mackay says:
      Venice votes for Independence.
      http://archive.is/7DQnP

      I can’t understand anybody who would want to get independent from a nice country like Italy that has most of its MSM owned by nice Mr Berlusconi (Tony Blair’s chum).

    138. joe kane says:

      In her own personal version of the English language Margaret Curran seemed to claim, in her interview after Lamont’s speech with the BBC’s Brian Taylor, that Labour for Independence had no presence at Scottish Labour Party conferences. I gather she took part in a debate in Perth in which Labour for Independence was actually involved.

      For those on Facebook here is the speech given by Allan Grogan of Labour for Independence to a conference fringe meeting event –
      https://www.facebook.com/labourforindependence/posts/717244308296178

    139. SquareHaggis says:

      OMFG!!

      Just tuned into BBC 2 and shame of all shame there’s me unkle Joe sittin in the audience! Snoozin mind you but…

      I hope to god for his sake he’s wearin ear-plugs or on an undercover sortie otherwise he’d better have a bulletproof excuse. Last time I saw him he was wearin a Y badge at Kinross Sunday Market now cozying up in Perth.

      Wait or I see him! Grrrrr…

    140. goldenayr says:

      Given the subject matter of this article,I’m wondering if I shouldn’t revert to one of my Scotsman monikers,”The British Establishment are Using the Same Tactics They Employ in NI to Disenfranchise the Electorate and Destabilise Democracy”[which got me banned on a regular basis]or “The British Establishment Lie”[which for some strange reason they found mildly acceptable]or the one they really hated and earned me instantaneous dismissal,at which point I stopped posting,”The British Establishment Despises Democracy”.

      I think,if it’s OK with you Rev,I’ll revert to the latter.

    141. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Margaret Curran must have a time-travelling doppelganger – she claims not to have been in places when she obviously was, and never to have met people she’s just finished talking to.

      Perhaps she doesn’t even know who she is, or what her job is. Come to think of it, that would explain a lot. It may yet transpire that Margaret Curran is, in fact, a dinner lady who just wandered off one day…

    142. goldenayr says:

      Just watched “Generation 2014”.The beebs youth reporter was telling in his hatred for independence.

      Training them young?

    143. Ken500 says:

      Scotland would be wealthier if Westminster didn’t squander the monies on illegal wars,Trident, redundant weaponry, banking fraud, paying off the excess borrowing and spending in the rest of the UK. NI is subsidised because of it’s bigotry. Why do they not change their ways, instead of expecting other people in the UK to subsidise their bigotry.

      The vulnerable are being targeted so the wealth gap increases. 5 people in the UK own more than than 1/5 (20%) of the population.

    144. Bill Walters says:

      Like all of these “who subsidises who?” arguments, Stu’s point here is based on the completely nonsensical idea that resource distribution is a zero sum game: namely that rich regions in a country have an incentive to leave because there’s no benefit to pooling resources – “pooling resources simply means transferring money from the richest regions to the poorest”.

      Clearly in the real world that isn’t how it actually works. If it did work like that then the nation state wouldn’t exist at all because every dominant economic region within a state (be it London, New York, Tokyo, Paris, whatever) would have an incentive to break off and keep their resources to themselves.

      The reason why it’s nonsense is that there are countless areas within a modern economy where pooling resources is mutually beneficial. Lending is but one area: having a larger chunk of reserves to guarantee your debts drastically reduces your risk to lenders and therefore the interest you pay on accessing credit. The gap between favourable rates on the bond markets, and ruinous rates of the kind experienced by Spain, Italy and others during the Eurozone crisis, can be the difference between a booming economy and a bankrupt one.

      That doesn’t enter the discussion, of course, because it doesn’t suit the narrative: namely the idea that merely pointing at the difference between taxation revenue and public spending in Scotland is enough to establish that independence would make us better off economically.

    145. Croompenstein says:

      @Bill Walters- rich regions…grrrrrr…

    146. Graeme McCormick says:

      Since ms Lamont intends to rid us of something for nothing how can we share nothing?

    147. Lochside says:

      Listened to a preview on Radio Scotland of Labour’s conference. They had Lucy Adam of the ‘Times’, that’s the London Times, not the Evening Times, on talking about it. What we got was a précis of a Labour handout, no analysis, no challenging of the lying contradictions included therein, no real journalistic nous.

      Joining her was another parachuted-in voice: Colleta somebody or other, the Chief. Economist in the ‘Referendum Unit’ an organisation that appears to consist of apprentice journalists brought in mainly from England.

      Coletta was also appearing on Louise White’s show this week assisting the formidable and charmless presenter with an ‘analysis’ of the Budget.

      This show was as ‘Louise’ ‘nice to talk to you’ White claimed ‘politics and politician free’..whilst asking every contributor what their REf vote was. Her audible sighs at every ‘Yes’ was quite pleasing to my ear. Coletta helpfully explained how Osborne’s policies were intended to work, with never a criticism or analysis and just to balance things a mite, a modest refusal to commit herself in relation to A Yes vote in Sept. affecting the economy.

      Question: What is this unit? What is its purpose? How were these people selected? Where are the seasoned Scottish reporters who have been displaced?

      Question: why are these people being drafted in at the expense of the existing staff? What knowledge do they have of Scotland and its politics? Are they even experienced enough in their jobs to take on such an extremely sensitive task?

      Even worse examples are Sarah Smith and James Naughtie. Both tainted by metropolitan trappings and in Smith’s case leading family Labour partisanship. Why on earth would Boothman and co. not think that this supplanting of Scottish staff stinks of the worst cronyism?

      If anyone wants to imagine how Crimea feels about being annexed by political bullies think about BBC Scotland.
      Don’t take my word for it, ask Prof. John Robertson of the University of West of Scotland.

    148. Morag says:

      Lucy Adams used to be a journalist on the Herald and she recently moved to the BBC. Are you talking about someone different?

    149. lochside says:

      Morag, re. Lucy Adams. Yes the same person. She was introduced as ‘Times’ correspondent. I think it may have ben a slip by the news presenter. I checked. She was the Sunday Times correspondent(Scotland) ten years ago.

      Anyway, her credentials don’t matter, her lack of journalistic integrity do. She’s part of the shakeup involving the Sarah Smith takeover at Newsnicht. Brewer out, Adams, Laura Bicker and Coletta Smith in.

    150. Morag says:

      I’m a bit hacked off with her about something quite unrelated, I have to say.

    151. chicmac says:

      Please not ‘value added’ figures are in large part, an accountancy trick. They are supposed to account for ‘subsidies’ into an area as well as gross product.

      Of course, what is, or is not, a ‘subsidy’ is highly subjective. The many hundred’s of billions which went towards protecting high earning banking jobs largely located in the City of London for instance (regardless of nominal HQ location). Don’t count. Not to mention the $650+ billion that went to Barclays alone (getting on for half the UK GDP).

      All designed to disguise where the genuine wealth is created.

    152. Ken500 says:

      Ill researched ‘journalists’, talking themselves out of a job. The majority will buy or watch their controlled nonsense.

      The Scottish gov should impose Leveson and give the public address against the corrupt Press.

      Where’s the Chilcott Verdict, which is being repressed.

    153. jon esquierdo says:

      SLAB are back to their old trait of calling the SNP tartan tories.This is coming from a party who are in bed with the tories at Westminster on every policy that is crippling living standards and increasing poverty on a daily basis.Are these people so entrenched in their hatred that they do not recognise what they are saying or is it tactic fear mega size?

    154. Ken500 says:

      The resources are going to make the richer richer, and starve the most vulnerable. That is what is happening? If the ressorces were being pooled and shared the vulnerable would not be starving. Westminster is rewarding the wealthiest and starving the most vulnerable. Scotland is losing because of Westminster decisions. No taxation without representation. Scotland is fighting for Democracy and proper government. Westminster is corrupt. Westminster are liars. Westminster are criminals who are above the Laws that they make. Most Westminster members and their associates should be in jail, especially the Tory bankers. That is what is happening in the UK. 5 people own more wealth than 1/5 (20%) of the population. People in Scotland have a right to democracy. Westminster lies and tries to secretly cover up the lies. Scottish Question time in Westminster is a disgrace. The Labour/Unionists are liars.

      There is no redistribution of wealth in the UK, only banking fraud,illegal wars, redundant weaponry, tax evasion and fraud. Cuts to essential services including the NHS/Education. No repayment of the deficit and starving the most vulnerable. The sharing and pooling theme is a lie to conceal Westminster corruption. Scotland can vote YES to create a better society.

    155. Grouse Beater says:

      I have a feeling a lot of people agree with Ken500’s remarks. Returning Scotland to an autonomous nation state is about the only way we can create democratic structures that encourage the best in us, not the worst.

    156. Achnababan says:

      Back to the photo – in shot we have 2 MPs, JoLo’s two children and 1 empty seat — just how many real labour members were actually in attendance?

    157. Kenneth says:

      Couldn’t post this on the most recent article as it doesn’t seem to have commenting on it. The people of Veneto/Venice have voted for independence from Rome. Most of you might have heard about this already but in case you haven’t here it is.

      http://rt.com/news/venice-votes-independence-italy-585/

      Would be surprised if there’s so much as a peep about it on msm.

    158. Bill Tohill says:

      @ Patrick Rodden
      So the BT/Labour project fear, is working at one level, but is failing more at another.

      In other words their goose is cooked and the more the Daily Record or Scotsman print these cringe worthy articles, the more they are making people angry.

      And let’s not forget our unionist loving friends at the P&J

    159. Muscleguy says:

      What Johann and Ed won’t tell you is that hard electoral calculus is that a collection of seats in and around the SE determine under FPTP who the government is. The swing voters in those constituencies are the ones who have to be won over if you want the Westminster Treasury benches.

      Any government that instituted a genuine regional rebalancing, for eg bringing NE England transport spending per head up even to the UK average, let alone spending less on the money pit of the SE (Crossrail, Thameslink, HS1, HS2 all those motorways, airports) would result in electoral suicide as those swing voters turn against you.

      Also while you are in government in London siren voices about overcrowding on this that or the other service are ever present while the Trans-Pennine service is faint and in the background.

      THAT is why there will NEVER be an equitable pooling and sharing of the national resources. I doubt even a properly proportional voting system would do it as so many people live in the SE.



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