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More uncertainty dispelled

Posted on May 07, 2014 by

Just in case Alistair Darling missed it:

If you don’t have time to watch those full 65 seconds from yesterday’s Scottish Affairs Select Committee hearing, we’ve pulled out the key quote from chairman Ian Davidson:

The state pension of any individual in Scotland, in the event of separation, would not be adversely affected, that they would continue to get the level of state pension, the same as everyone else in the UK… People themselves can be assured that their pensions are secure.

That certainly SEEMS pretty clear, wouldn’t you say?

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    70 to “More uncertainty dispelled”

    1. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Ohh, dunno Rev. I think we need clarification from Carmichael, McDougall, Davidson, Rennie and Lamont.

      For a start.

      Just to be sure, eh?

    2. TheItalianJob says:

      Of course. Clear as day to me. Thanks Stu.

      Just need to get the MSM (including the BBC) onboard. But unfortunately their clarity is not the same as yours.

    3. Jim Thomson says:

      Former Politician Broon also needs to know.

    4. Fraser Graham says:

      Nope. Need more clarity! (Especially as no-one in the MMS is going to cover it!)

    5. TheItalianJob says:

      And Flipper too.

    6. Lesley-Anne says:

      You know what, I’m certain I saw a pair of very worn down teeth being nashed in that clip as our favourite Chairman of the Scottish Select Committee, or what ever it’s called, stated the obvious facts about State pensions in an independent Scotland. 😛

    7. bunter says:

      Cant be any clearer Rev. Would be a good idea to alert the likes of James Cook of the BBC of this most momentous scoop!!

    8. Training Day says:

      I’ll take a wild guess that this isn’t clear to Gary Robertson and Hayley Millar at Good Morning Scutland (no typo).

    9. Peter Macbeastie says:

      I’m sure someone at the Sunday Herald would be more than happy to point this out.

      Remember, everyone, Scottish national weekly paper on our side. I know we’re not used to that, but I’m pretty sure I could get to like it and I’m sure you could too. 🙂

    10. Doug Daniel says:

      Seems like a slam dunk to me. But then I’m not a mainstream media journalist.

    11. Indy_Scot says:

      I was always under the impression that Ian Davidson was part of the No campaign.

    12. proudscot says:

      It was reported on a BBC Scotland news bulletin this morning that Alistair Carmichael remarked (no doubt sneeringly) that the YES Campaign was “Project Ridiculous”. This buffoon is well nicknamed Secretary of State for Portsmouth. Between him and his LibDem sidekick Booker Alexander they make more anti-Scotland sneers and put-downs than even their Tory masters do.

    13. Steve Bowers says:

      Think I’ll just pass this on to my mid 70’s folks for distribution.
      Anyone out there who is any good “changing/editing” video like his and adding stuff cos I’ve got a few ideas which might be mildly amusing ?

    14. bunter says:

      You gotta laugh sometimes. Months of media whining about so many unanswered questions, and along comes an answer, then silence!

    15. MochaChoca says:


      Polling cards for the referendum to be sent out on 14th and 15th August.

      That’s 100 days.

      Remember when the referendum timing was announced the headlines talked about 1000 days of campaigning. And back then many unionists were adamant that it would be illegal for the Scottish Government to hold it.

    16. Lesley-Anne says:

      Just thought I’d do my bit and edge the TV news channels a wee bit closer to the TRUTH. I’ve just tweeted BBC Scotland News, BBC News, STV News, Channel 4 News, Channel 5 News, Sky News and Max Keiser to ask about why they are NOT reporting about the State benefits remaining after independence.

      O.K. I admit the tweet to Max was just for the hell of it and stir the proverbial a wee bit, OK a lot. 😛

    17. Nigel says:

      I wonder what negative spin could be put on that? Let’s see – um er, well…

      Better bury it on an inside page under adverts for gardening services or not print it at all. Least said, soonest mended. Thankfully, the internet will put paid to that kind of voluntary censorship by the MSM.

      It does raise another point. Should the BT advert about pensions be investigated by Advertising Standards Authority? Surely they are misleading on so many levels given the news today? I cannot believe that Darling did not know about this when those posters were first signed off. He’s not that dim. Or is he?

    18. Training Day says:


      Aye, and anyone else alarmed at this?

      “Because a high turn out is expected, Mrs Pitcaithly wants councils to print 120% of the required ballots for both postal voters and those who vote in person at polling stations, in case any papers get lost or damaged.”

    19. Lesley-Anne says:

      I forgot to say that TESCO have said that they are not going anywhere, even if we do vote YES in September. I wonder what Douglas Fraser has to say about this, oh wait a minute think I’ll just go and ask him. 😛

    20. Greannach says:

      I’m astonished! I could swear Gordon Brown and Alasdair Darling said something different, and they know everything. The fixed the economy. Surely some mistake?

    21. heedtracker says:

      Vote no or else Press and journal has this too but in little wee column with even smaller “State pension stays safe if Scots vote Yes-Webb”

      UKOK journos are an odd bunch though as the P&J unnamed reporter slips in “The future of pensions has become a key issue in the independence debate.” If so, why has the noble and honest P&J got a massive headline “UK firms say no to Scot home rule” with detail’s like none of their own headline is actually factual in the full page report, on top of such a key issue?
      So much for key issues between the ears of whoever conducts P&J propaganda.

      Also today, P&J is in Houston all this week and Ryan Crichton(relation no doubt) says today that vote YES and Newcastle will then become the “Capital” of Scots oil industry.

      UK gov says it’s going to move their new oil regulator to Newcastle after Scotland becomes independent and won’t that be a disaster everyone. Sure Aberdeen is in contention to become oil HQ but if you even think of voting Yes, they will give it all to Newcastle.

      Not once does it occur to Ryan Crichton of the P&J that Scots oil industry is the Scots oil industry but what can you do.

    22. gordoz says:

      Wait for the BBC Scotchland ‘youth workshp cartoon’ (for the hard of understanding), don’t think it will be quite so clear then !

    23. handclapping says:

      Thank heavens for that, I just couldn’t take any more uncertainty. To know that we are now back to the normal level of uncertainty is certainly a blessing.

      I presume that you define a normal level of uncertainty to be that at which nobody can afford to trust what a politician says.

    24. GrahamB says:

      A bit O/T
      Just listened to ‘Does Scandanavia Want Scotland?’ on Radio Scotland. Presented by Alan Little, by far the most even handed commentator (perhaps even YES leaning) on the EBC, and including Lesley Riddoch it was very refreshing and also realistic. Well worth listening to at

    25. MochaChoca says:

      Training Day,

      Yes does seem a strange thing to do.
      I’d be comfortable with having the whole thing overseen by outside regulator.

    26. faolie says:

      I see that the Herald now has this story under its Referendum News section.

      Older people will be entitled to the same level of state pension after independence, Coalition Pensions minister Steve Webb has said. Well, that’s pretty clear.


      Mr Webb told MPs: “Citizenship is irrelevant…They are entitled to that money.” Clearer still, I’d say.

      Perhaps now we can move on to serious stories like this massive import duty on Mars bars after independence issue.

    27. bunter says:

      I will be sharing this on facebook right up till the referendum as the barstewards are not gonna get away with suppressing this story.

    28. Bigbricks says:

      Ian Brotherhood – “clarification from Carmichael”. Clarification from Big Al???
      I may need medical help here, I think my sphincters are in danger of loosening.

    29. gordoz says:

      Fails on a technicality – Davidson (as always), mentions only ‘Separashun’ – BBC still reports pensions for Scotland will with ‘Independence’.

      Guys your just not paying attention to detail – BBC are on the ball; they’ll have spotted that 🙂

    30. Xander says:

      Having watched the full session, I would like to address the chair of the committee and politely ask:

      “Who are you, and what have you done with Ian Davidson MP, you impostor?”

    31. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      I just wonder that after a YES vote and the BBC (Scotlandshire) is defenestrated, will Douglas Fraser have to become a househusband?

    32. gordoz says:

      Fails on a technicality – Davidson (as always), mentions only ‘Separashun’ – BBC still reports pensions for Scotland will fail with ‘Independence’.

      Guys your just not paying attention to detail – BBC are on the ball; they’ll have spotted that.

      (It was the paying attention thing – coming back to get me; aarrgghh)

    33. faolie says:

      Very OT, but I just watched the FM’s speech to the College of Europe in Bruges. Definitely worth a watch if you have the time just to see what our approach to Europe could be, rather than this obsession about UKIP and foreigners coming here and taking all our crappy jobs.

      Search the iPlayer for ‘briefings’

    34. Brendan says:

      I note that David Mundell is present at this discussion. Surely he must now step forward and and reassure the Scottish electorate that the No campaign`s message on pension is totally untrue. Perhaps Alisdair Carmichael in his role as Scottish Secretary is also duty bound reassure the Scottish public.

    35. Ken500 says:

      YES because Scottish taxes pay UK gov pensions/welfare benefits in Scotland NOW. £17Billion.

      Scottish revenues go to Westminster £3Billion overpayment. £4Billion loan repayments on monies not borrowed or spent in Scotland. Plus £3Billion which could be raised/ saved on Trident/redundant weaponry, and a tax on ‘loss leading’ drink. = £10Billion.

    36. Lesley-Anne says:

      Aye Brendan you’re right, Mundell was there but I’m not too sure about you saying he was present I think you are being a wee bit STRONG there. For him to be present would imply that he understood what was being said and took it on board. As he is my *ahem* M.P., for my sins 🙂 , I can assure you he most certainly did NOT take anything on board that meant good news for an independent Scotland.

    37. Ken500 says:

      The ‘Committee’ is a total farce. A Labour MP ? Flynn walked out. They all know Scottish taxes pay UK Gov Pension/benefits in Scotland. It’s just a joke.

    38. Roll_On_2014 says:


      I was always under the impression that Ian Davidson was part of the No campaign.

      Naw I reckon oor Ian is more interested in securing his own pension pot post 24.03.2016.

      After all he has stated that the only thing Scots are interested in is running about bayoneting hundreds of thousands of his benefactors.

    39. Dougie Bee says:

      Pensioner who move to other countries when they retire get their problem, so why would an independent Scotland be any different..that old Queen song comes to mind..Another one bites the dust…

    40. Training Day says:


      I’m struggling to comprehend the logic of printing 120% of ballot papers. Even at the best expected levels of turnout there doesn’t seem to be an issue.

      What happens to the spares? Are we in for another Brian Taylor in Glenrothes moment when the result is suddenly stood on its head?

      This is seriously worrying (and not unexpected).

    41. liz says:

      Well now that’s beyond doubt BT should get done for lying on their posters.

      If people can be shown that this is a blatant lie, maybe that will make them wonder if any other lies are being told.

    42. Jimbo says:

      Good for Ian Davidson – Spelling out tomorrow’s headlines for the hard of thinking in the Scottish media – Just so there’s no ambiguity!

    43. Mosstrooper says:

      Yes, yes, yes, that’s all very well and good but will our pensions be secure in an independent Scotland? I think we should be told. Where are the answers?

    44. gordoz says:

      @Training Day says / MochaChoca

      Aye, and anyone else alarmed at this?

      “Because a high turn out is expected, Mrs Pitcaithly wants councils to print 120% of the required ballots for both postal voters and those who vote in person at polling stations, in case any papers get lost or damaged.”

      Err YES – thought this was a joke initially.

      120 % sounds like preparations for vote rigging !

      Just how will this be accurately vetted & scrutinized ?

      YES have a record of being too trusting / polite and often suffer from ball watching.

      Think Joe public need to let the authorities know the people are watching and if anything, the result had better not be tampered with by processes such as this contingency.

    45. bunter says:

      Aye The Herald now has the pension story under the politics tab, but not where it should be for what it is. We should be grateful that the weekday version is ”neutral”. I wonder if it appeared due to the power of new media?

    46. Flower of Scotland says:

      Please someone tell Big Gordy! Then the poor soul won’t have to trip round Scotland telling bad news about pensions when Ian Davidson says it’s all ok!

      o/t. The Courier Referendum bus was in Falkland this morning and surprise! 57% YES. 43% NO. It’s now in Strath and I turned up with my yes badge and did a wee survey, got a pen and a special courier pullout! There are some photos in Strath, only a no voter that was there just before me , but none of me with my yes badge! Not optimistic for Strath vote , but we,ll see.

    47. heedtracker says:

      @ Ken, the problem is the UKOK propaganda machine says Scotland is “given” £1300 a year more than the rest of teamGB . Here’s the vote NO Guardian’s head propaganda merchant in Scotland

      “Scotland’s Treasury grant is £1,300 a head higher than the UK average, while Welsh political leaders say the Barnett formula discriminates against Wales, underfunding the country by about £300m a year, and are also pressing for it to be reformed.”

      Carrell also says that although majority of English firms want a NO win, they all want Scotland’s £1300 Barnet freebie gone too.

      Note also the Guardian tattered Saltire photo and relish the loathing of Scotland by Severin Carrell of the progressive and liberal Guardian:-(

    48. call me dave says:

      The state pension scare is causing great concern. The YES stall I witnessed in Fife had a constant stream of OAP’s looking for confirmation of what would happen to their pension .

      This was a day or two after Gordon’s speech. If this clarification from the DWP is widely read and understood then surely for NO the games a bogey!

      Oh wait… that depends on the media reporting it.

    49. Ken500 says:

      Severin Carrell is a liar. Wales is underfunded £1Billion, but the Labour Party in Wales collude with Westminster.

      The Labour/Unionists drunks in Westminster are at it again. ‘Scottish Questions’ at Westminster is a disgrace.

    50. gordoz says:

      Still nothing on ‘Pensions’ story @ ‘UK State Broadcater’ or ‘Commercial UK state Broadcaster’ websites (or twitter).

      Guess they dont want to report this to the people; as they are averse to good news / calming stories; prefer ‘Fear and Loathing in Glasvegas’

      Predictable stuff (Undecideds take note)
      Perhaps the State Broadcasters have something to answer for in terms of ‘we need more information’ ?

      Seem to be a bit ‘one sided’ don’t they.

    51. Liquid Lenny says:


      35 Year is the minimum term for contribution’s to “earn” a UK Pension. It does not matter if SG get monies from UK and then top it up or if the UK pays direct and the SG top up whatever additional pension. _)

      I would imagine all the contributions under 35 years will be subject to negotiation meaning that the SG does not have to fully fund pensions for a generation, giving them the opportunity to build up a sizeable pension pot.

    52. bunter says:

      Has anyone tweeted to any of the ”journalists” at either of the state broadcasters and got a reply? Here is the chance to inform the debate, no?

    53. Brian Powell says:

      I’m not sure why they are allowing Council officers or executives to handle any part of the process of the Referendum vote. They are from political parties who have a very big stake in the outcome.

      This can’t be seen as an ordinary election. The number of papers printed should be accounted for.

      I also don’t understand the situation where they would be allowed to announce a result before all the counts are in.

      The penalty for losing the electoral registers is £5000, and is supposed to apply to the individual, no matter what the excuse.

      But at the Glenrothes election, after an investigation, no one was fined.

    54. heedtracker says:

      “People themselves can be assured that their pensions are secure.“ Still nothing online BBC Scotland news, politics, business, zero. No doubt Jacky Bird is going to tell Scotland all about it on her teatime vote No news blast this evening. What are the odds she wont?

    55. Brian Powell says:

      It would be useful to watch to see if there is a correlation between any down message from Davidson, and what is said on the BBC and mdm.

    56. gordoz says:

      This has just gone up as a new post on State Broadcaster news website. as of 3.42pm

    57. Thomas Barrowman says:

      Not sure if anyone has mentioned this before, The better together pension posters could we all not complain to the advertising authority about it! After all it’s lies pure and simple!

    58. manandboy says:

      As one of the richest countries per capita in the world, an Independent Scotland would find it hard to allow it’s 4th bottom place on the EU countries pensions list to continue.

      Self respect alone will require pensions to rise in an oil rich, gas rich, wind rich, tidal energy rich, etc., etc. country.

      BTW, does anyone know when troops & tanks will be amassed on the English side of the Scottish border for ‘exercises’.

    59. Macandroid says:

      @ Thomas 4:13pm

      From – step 2:

      “In the first instance, we suggest you try to resolve your complaint with the advertiser direct.

      If you wish to submit a complaint to us, we require you to provide good grounds for investigating it. Speculative challenges without good supporting information to back them up are unlikely to be accepted. Please bear this in mind when outlining your complaint later.”

      Perhaps someone just has to raise it with Better Thegether and they’ll agree to remove any offending posters!

    60. manandboy says:

      Ps. I really do think the intimidation from the Unionists will be without limit.

      In the eyes of the City of London,
      the sums of money at stake in Scotland
      are simply too much to lose
      while their debts are too much to repay.

      Vote Yes

    61. Les Wilson says:

      A Poster should be put up on ALL YES stalls, with a text copy of the MP’s statement. All with YES colours and Logo’s

    62. No no no...Yes says:

      @ Gordoz 4:10 pm

      Pensions and the link to BBC news. I like the photo they have used:

      It is the Better Together politicians day out at the seaside. Ironically they all on sitting on the same bench. From left to right:

      Alistair Darling (looking tired and aged),
      David Cameron( putting his arm over to Alistair to console his about the lost ermine opportunity)
      Johann Lamont (pointing to the squirrel)
      Furthest to the right, Ruth Davidson.

    63. John Boyes says:

      I would love it if Colin and Christine Weir were to approach Johnstone Press and ask them to name a price for The Scotsman Group. Though it cost J.P.around £150m when they bought it in 2005 it can only be worth a fraction of that now. The effect of the publicity surrounding such a move (serious or not) would certainly be illuminating.

    64. Bob W says:

      If you listen carefully to that clip, at about 7s in, Davidson nearly uses the ‘I’ word “after i” but quickly changes to his stock word for Independence.

      Maybe he’s swapped his bayonet for a rubber dagger.

    65. Justin Kenrick says:

      @faolie – thanks. Salmond’s Q&A after his Bruge speech (search on iplayer for ‘Briefings’) is excellent

    66. Robert Peffers says:

      @Steve Bowers says: “Anyone out there who is any good “changing/editing” video like his and adding stuff cos I’ve got a few ideas which might be mildly amusing?”

      Aye Steve I’ve been editing video since the days of crash editing by two, or more, tape decks of clips playing and one tape deck recording and no good synchronization between them. That with no computer assistance.

      However, I’m way over my head in editing jobs just now. I’ve just been cataloguing 20 odd old digital tapes before getting down to the actual editing of the several different requested DVD and Blu-ray disk projects. Some of those tapes were 1 hour and some as long as 1.45 hours long.

      Anyway, that’s the mind numbing part over and the rest will be all downhill. You should have a go yourself Steve. Windows now comes with editing programs built in and there are several decent open source and freeware editors out there on the internet.

    67. dadsarmy says:

      I wonder about Davidson, always have. I think he just can’t accept evasion from anyone in front of him, and keeps on going until he gets a straight answer.

      Then the pre-written report gets signed off, totally ignoring what any of the witnesses have said, and bearing no resemblance to the tone of the committee hearing.

    68. CameronB Brodie says:


    69. On the same page that the P&J ran the “state pensions safe if Scots vote Yes” story, its leading story was headlined “UK firms say No to Scots home rule”. The article contained the following paragraph – “Over a quarter of firms – 28% – said Scotland should create its own currency if it votes to leave the UK; 18% said it should join the euro and 8% said it should retain sterling, but not join a currency union.”

      That comes to 54%. What was the response of the other firms? Keen to find out, I went to the actual survey online. Guess what the headline on the Chambers of Commerce press release is? “BCC:Scottish Independence debate leaves most UK businesses unfazed”

      Regarding the missing 46% of responses for the currency question, guess what the actual survey says – “Just over a third of businesses (35%) believe a formal currency union would be in the best interests of the UK if Scotland became independent.”


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