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On the march

Posted on August 03, 2020 by

Symbolism matters in politics. What ostensibly can appear minor actions can have significant effect. Simply changing the names of things, whether from Londonderry to Derry or from the Scottish Executive to the Scottish Government (and swapping a UK-focused logo for a Scotland-focused one), were hugely important, signalling a new era and enthusing supporters.

Similarly, it’s been the case that as well as public actions of political leaders there requires to be mobilisation of grassroots supporters.

That can be in visible displays of support, not just by the usual political means of leafletting or canvassing. The “million-man march” on Washington was pivotal for the American Civil Rights Movement and mobilisation of ordinary people linking hands across the Baltic States, crucial in achieving freedom from the Soviet Union for Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

Historically, that’s been the case in Scotland as well. Preservation of memory and celebration of a cause have been practiced and participated in. Within the SNP there’s been the annual Bannockburn Rally and other events around the country. Within Scotland more generally, May Day rallies were important, as was the Miners Gala, both nationally and in smaller communities.

In the years when the SNP was a fraction of its current strength, participating in protest rallies was always important. Before my time the Holy Loch was part of the national movement’s calendar, supplanted for future generations by Trident and Faslane.

Joining with the Labour movement in opposing unemployment or factory closures was equally vital. Though often relegated by Labour Party machinations to the back of the march, it showed willing, and being seen to be there by the wider public was vital. Though votes might not then have been won, seeds were laid, and success reaped in years to come.

Solidarity was established within the cause and friendships were made amongst the faithful who gathered. Many activists from those days have tales, humorous or otherwise, to tell. It was also important because it kept the cause alive and in the public eye when media coverage was limited or non-existent, and it showed the cause to have life and spirit even when political progress was limited and success seemed a distant dream.

It was the same come the referendum in 2014. Major rallies showed the increase in support and the scale of the movement that was being born, when the mainstream media remained implacably hostile and negative in coverage.

Increasing in size and number throughout the campaign, smaller community events were just as important as the large-scale ones. Inspiration and hope were given to communities that had been suffering for generations and had often been bereft of either. Activists brought people into the fold and ultimately out to vote.

Now as lockdown eases it’s time for the independence movement to get its boots back on and prepare to start marching once again. Not just those major set-piece rallies that still exist but other ones around the country and especially in our communities. Preparations are being made and those doing so deserve our thanks and support. It’s important and now is the time.

In recent years I’ve counselled against marching, recommending canvassing or direct communication on the door in. Believing that in communities the old-time activism was best, with face-to-face contact preferred, it being essential to show we cared about areas that had been forgotten. Reaching out to them was and is vital to maintaining hope that things could change and a continued belief in our cause.

But I supported the big organised displays which sustained the cause at a difficult time and equally showed its continued strength when invigoration was required. I was on several of them and the camaraderie was vital at a difficult time. Numbers were always far greater than police or council declared. The size of the last one before lockdown in Edinburgh was indicative of the continued strength of the independence cause. Eyes were opened and the establishment was frightened.

But in the new world brought about by coronavirus, canvassing and leafletting will be hard. Some activists for understandable reasons will not wish to do it. More importantly many of the public will not welcome it. Even with a face mask, chapping a door will be frowned on and could be counterproductive at this time. Even putting a leaflet through a door will raise concerns.

That’s why marching must begin. Socially distanced it must be, and respectful of the guidance provided. But it’s essential. Smaller marches in deprived housing schemes will show that the cause is still alive in areas that have been suffering. Moreover, a huge rally on an unprecedented scale is required to show that this is the demand of the Scottish people.

It’s time once again to show that independence is on the march.


*Kenny MacAskill is an SNP MP and the former Cabinet Secretary for Justice.

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  1. 03 08 20 12:57

    On the march | speymouth

211 to “On the march”

  1. Ian McCubbin says:

    It will begin again, both YES2 and AUOB plan marches with 1st being in Glasgow on September 20th.
    Lets see a big turnout.

  2. Ian Foulds says:

    good article.

    at last we are recognising WE are sovereign and want a just and peaceful society with everybody recognising that we all from most powerful to weakest have a responsibility and duty to look after each other.

    let us discard the irrelevant distractions and take back our lives, our Country, our Sovereignty for the good of all, nationally and internationally.

  3. bobajock says:

    If we march it must be somewhere not too enclosed, all facemasks must be worn, distance must be kept, and more importantly we must show that this is happening.

    Ive been on many and Edinburgh was ‘tight’, Glasgow a bit more open, Stirling even more open … but if its ‘huge’ then it presents a problem – transport wise as much as march wise.

  4. Walter Jones says:

    Mr MacAskill

    I thought you were on here to tell us of your disgust at the present trajectory of your Party.

    But like the majority of MPs and MSPs In the SNP, you talk about something else altogether.

    So you want us to get out and raise the profile of Scottish Independence?

    This will then generate more support for Sturgeon, which will lead to more delays to indyRef2.

    So until you get shot of your leader and until the new List Parties are organised, I will not be marching.

    I am not doing one single thing that will help raise the profile of Sturgeon.

    You can shove your ideas up your jacksey.

    Sturgeon out!!!

  5. Bob Mack says:

    Thank you Kenny. Nice to hear ,and much needed I assure you.

    Meanwhile I hope the party is rooting out those who have infiltrated its ranks ,not for independence of to promote the party ,but to push their own agendas.

  6. Donald R says:

    Don’t be daft. I’m all for marches—but not in the middle of a pandemic. Leave it to next year at the very least. Don’t give opponents an excuse to blame us for any spike. There must be better ideas than this. Stalls in every high street for example, with face masks and distancing, and smarter use of online media. There will be plenty of time for marches leading up to the next referendum. In any case, thank you Kenny MacAskill for your service to the country, we are in need of your voice in leadership.

  7. Rm says:

    Why not make the march in Dundee or maybe Arbroath make it easier for everybody from all over Scotland to get there, start a new declaration for the 21st century and a new united front which will push for ending the union.

  8. Mialuci says:

    Bruce Fummey has a youtube channel all about scottish history.

    I recommend Bruce to anyone that want’s to have a shufty at his videos, I have been following bruce for a while now , he is an ex/teacher and his little films can be quite funny as he has a good sense of humour.

    Anyway, here is one film to start off with, its called.

    The Glencoe Massacre, Tales from Scotland’s History

  9. Stuart MacKay says:

    With social distancing I think even the police will be able to count accurately without too much difficulty.

  10. Mialuci says:

    As long as you keep voting for the SNP Mr Walter Jones, I don’t give a feck what you do, we have a leader, we have a party that at this particular moment in time is the only one that can get us independence, I remember when the nats where just a small party that nobody took seriously, look at us now about 40 years later, they don’t laugh at us now, cause they know what the future is for scotland, and its not unionism

    Alba Gu Bra

  11. Dogbiscuit says:

    This ‘new world’ has been brought about by politicians like yourself Mr MacAskill.You voted Boris Johnson Dictator. I don’t think we are on the same side.

  12. Dogbiscuit says:

    Oh and stick your bogus emergency up your arse.

  13. Robert Graham says:

    So many people asking for something anything to show the whole point of pressing for the second indyref 2 vote hasn’t went into hibernation or been parked in some lay-by and can’t be even referred to ,
    The reluctance seen by the governing party is really getting up people’s noses Unionists are popping up all over the place talking the usual drivel without any return of fire , has the SNP media section taken a vow of bleedn silence , Christ Galloway is getting more coverage than the SNP

    SNP members and supporters on other sites seem perfectly happy to keep referring to poll numbers and everything else is forgotten about , everything is just Peachy , and all you trouble makers here are helping the unionist side , it doesn’t matter if the governing party are doing Duck all you lot are disturbing them doing Duck all so you lot are the problem , not them doing He Haw

  14. schrodingers cat says:

    Mialuci says:
    Bruce Fummey
    agreed, i went to PERTH high school with bruce.
    you forgot the link

  15. schrodingers cat says:

    Kenny’s right. one of our strengths was boots on the ground, the ability to leaflet and canvas voters in a way the unionists could never do.

    that option is now closed to us, folk wont thank us for knocking on doors until at least the other side of next summer. bear in mind, the unionists will simple pay the postman to deliver 1000’s of leaflets 🙁

  16. Tom Kane says:

    Superb analysis of why (safe) marching make most sense right now. We don’t have access to the levers of the print/radio/tv broadcasters, and actually, we don’t need them. We just need to show willing and demonstrate the new and emerging will of the people who live in Scotland.

    Mr MacAskill, it was a joy watching you work the first time round. This time, it looks as though it’s going to be even better. Respect.

  17. Almond Chutney says:

    SO naturally, COVID has put a pause on most things commercial and seemingly political, if the trend for support increases every so slightly, I don’t personally see the need to complain about it. Scotland will choose what is right when the pieces fall together.

  18. jimnarlene says:

    @ Dogniscuit.

    “Dogbiscuit says:
    3 August, 2020 at 11:53 am
    This ‘new world’ has been brought about by politicians like yourself Mr MacAskill.You voted Boris Johnson Dictator. I don’t think we are on the same side.”

    How exactly did an SNP MP vote Johnson’s government in?
    I suggest you try reality before typing utter pish.

  19. cirsium says:

    @bobajock, 11.09

    Why the need for facemasks when the marches are outside and will be in September? The coronavirus peaked in March and is now petering out. It is the same in Sweden. With or without the shutdown of society, this coronavirus infection was going to follow a gaussian curve as does the rhinovirus, the influenza virus, or the adenovirus.

    The masks available to the general public are permeable by viruses so, given the doubtful efficacy, Sweden does not require mask wearing, neither does the Netherlands

    Dr Detlef Kruger, one of the Germany’s top virologist, formerly of Charité Hospital Berlin
    I consider the wearing of “mouth-nose protection” suddenly discovered by politics to be Actionism. It should be clear that you cannot protect yourself because you continue to breathe the ambient air unfiltered. There is only a certain effect if you are infected yourself and thus a virus separator. The “mouth-nose-protection” pretends a security that does not exist and it is rather a “germ-slingshot” for various pathogens when it becomes unclean.

  20. iain mhor says:

    I’m confused ‘…I’ve counselled against marching’ ,’But I supported the big organised displays’

    With Covid one or two people popping leaflets through the door is bad and scary, thousands marching about the town is lovely and we’ll have to stop people launching themselves at us and hugging and kissing us. Aye, right.

    Currently rallies during lockdowns and social distancing (as opposed to ‘marches’?) are being decried by everyone and their dug, as irresponsible nutcases.

    Yes, it would be great to get out and raise the flags again, but unless it’s a symbolic set piece of an hundred or less, (fully tooled up with PPE and distancing) then it is only ever going to be “Irresponsible Seperatist Coronavirus Deniers Spreading Death to a Town Near You’

    Leafletting, canvassing sure. People are standing on doorsteps daily; talking, picking up their Amazon parcels and generally blethering with the neighbours.
    I’m to believe people will shite themselves because a leaflet or two is dropped in the post? No.
    Black masked strangers chapping the door perhaps, I’ll give you that, but not mass rallies. They have tremendous impact and are a fantastic experience, just not a very clever suggestion.

    Best you could perhaps do is some limited numbers, but well rehearsed and choreographed manouevers, as a set piece open air entertainment a-la flash mobs (always an oxymoron)
    I might stand and watch that at the cross, or green.

    Trying to avoid contact with a colourful but huge mob, just yelling “Fwwt do fee wnt, mmmdepnndnnce! through soggy saltire masks – maybe not so much.

  21. schrodingers cat says:

    cos the vast majority of folk in scotland abide by the rule to wear a mask in public

    if mask wearing isnt enforced at marches, the vast majority of folk will avoid them.

    you would kill the march stone dead for the sake of a few folk who are unwilling to wrap a hanky round their face.

    if you dont want to wear a mask, fine. but organise your own march

  22. Stuart MacKay says:

    Mialuci, SC – Bruce Fummey

    Make him Minister for History. Like. Now. Really excellent videos, thanks.

  23. schrodingers cat says:

    @ian mhor
    Leafletting, canvassing sure. People are standing on doorsteps daily; talking, picking up their Amazon parcels and generally blethering with the neighbours.
    I’m to believe people will shite themselves because a leaflet or two is dropped in the post? No.
    no, but having leafleted and canvased for years i have often been verbally abused and once physically assaulted (bastard slammed the letter box down on my fingers)

    the simple truth is my branch snp members are unwilling to leaflet and canvas at the moment. it would offer crazy unionists too much of an opportunity to weird out.

    now if you and your snp branch are willing to leaflet and canvas, by all means, do so. I’d ask indylive tv to film you doing it as it would help convince my members that we can start doing likewise?

  24. Republicofscotland says:

    Symbolism in politics does matter, and its very symbolic that you’ve chosen to write several articles on Stu’s blog. I can only assume that you read Stu’s excellent analysis of the SNPs position via his threads and possibly some of the more interesting comments as well.

    I also assume by penning your articles that you must see a modicum if not more of truth in what’s going on inside the party, and that although you probably don’t want to publicly express your disgust at it, you’ll feel that the next best thing to do is to try and instill some unity outwith the party hence drawing our attention to independence marches.

    I can only hope that we won’t once again be marching in vain.

  25. schrodingers cat says:


    yes he is, but until we win our independence, Bruce will remain sidelined in favour of Starky and Oliver

    bruce also does talks to yes groups 🙂

  26. Stuart MacKay says:

    schrodingers cat,

    > if mask wearing isnt enforced at marches, the vast majority of folk will avoid them.

    That’s an easy problem to solve: masks with the Saltire, Yes, or anything related to independence should be an easy idea to sell and sends a stronger message in the bargain.

  27. schrodingers cat says:


    thats quite a good idea

    we need ways of raising money, to pay the postman to deliver our leaflets

    how much does a complete mail shot of scotland cost?

    if stu does a wbb2, how would we get it out?

  28. James Che. says:

    Wether it would be possible or not, I do not know, but one of the most eye catching marches that would be spoken for ages would be a chain of yes supporters from one side of Scotland to to other,
    We would be able to keep our distance during this pandemic that’s for sure.
    But could you imagine the visual and mental message that would send across the world if all of us stood along the border, and created a Scottish border of people in blue and white.

  29. schrodingers cat says:

    in the meantime consider becoming a patron of bruce, enable him to continue making programmes

  30. Paul K says:

    I can only speak for myself but I found this article to be a real morale-booster. So much negativity surrounding the SNP just now. They’ve totally lost it. I f***ing love Kenny MacAskill.

  31. ahundredthidiot says:

    Sorry, Kenny fae Southpark was mumbling quite a bit there………did he say he was joining the march then?

  32. Walter Jones says:

    Cat/Pete Wishart

    Off and running.

    It doesn’t take him long to get up to full speed posting mode.

    Away and chase the rats or something ya halfwit.

    You are appearing on every second post for fuck sake.

  33. ahundredthidiot says:

    pete wishart AKA The Cat, says;

    ‘if mask wearing isnt enforced at marches, the vast majority of folk will avoid them.’

    I smell a trap here for AUOB – they should agree to no more than the guidance of the day and even then, leave the responsibility for that with the individual.

    Besides, if you don’t have the courage to walk about in fresh air without the need for a face mask – what good are you.

  34. Bob Mack says:

    At least Kenny has guts enough to put his head above the parapet and contribute to Wings. That should tell you something.

    Who else has done that from the SNP?

  35. StoviesPlz says:

    There’s stupid, then there’s really fucking stupid and then there’s this.

  36. Stuart MacKay says:


    > I smell a trap here for AUOB

    Sigh. You must have been next in line to Bruce Fummey when they were handing out creativity and he got all of yours as well.

    Just give the march stewards a big boxing glove on a stick to gently prod people apart if they get too close to each other. Or, just let people walk in two or more columns alternately so there’s way more space between the people in front and behind so there’s no issue if people start to lag. That also has the benefit of making it easy for any numerically-challenged official doing any counting.

    That took all of a minute or two to think up (yes, I know it shows).

    All good-natured stuff and part of the fun of the day.

  37. schrodingers cat says:


    we could actually start with car cavalcades?

  38. iain mhor says:

    @Schrodingers Cat 1:12pm

    That’s a shame, it’s not been my experience in the main, but never usually direct canvassing only incidental; chapping doors is never particularly well received at the best of times, whatever anyone is punting (about the only exception was encouraging voter registration and that was a bit easier decoupled as non-partisan)

    Never had any particular bother leafletting. Might pass the odd folk on the way in/out expressing their strong opinion and that’s easy to cross them off the list if it’s negative.
    Just lucky in my particular area I suppose – dugs were more bother.

    It was a conversation while leafletting which improved things a lot. A local restaurant owner asked how much I’d take to deliver his menus. For a modest fee I had my fuel and the price of a piece covered (I’ve mentioned this before)
    Now that may, or may not be a good idea – indy material in with a carry out menu – it may have become so much more junk mail to the recipient. Who knows.

    You’re welcome to film? A bit of a weird request..
    “Here’s a handsome big dude walking door to door, today he is mostly wearing Issey Miyake, it’s important to smell fragrant – the clean cut of his Craghoppers says casual smart, but not intimidating or formal. How about his gait Jeff?
    Quietly confident there, not arrogant, no swagger – but wait here he goes, he’s found a gate, will there be a big barky dug this time? I can hardly contain myself! But now a word from our sponsors… ”

    Rivetting stuff?

  39. Effijy says:

    The next march isn’t just about independence it’s about the disaster the Tories
    Have made of the Covid Virus management, it’s about the No Deal Brexit, it’s about
    The millions made unemployed.

    I think the spacing will be wonderful as there be an unbroken line of supporters from the start at Kelvinway to final speeches at Glasgow Green.

    Can I ask the AUOB organisers to have a steward using Clickers at the beginning and end to establish the true number of marchers and offer the Police, BBC and Council to monitor this as the
    Embarrassing guesstimates they put forward are completely absurd.

  40. Walter Jones says:

    It seems to be Sturgeon supporters who are desperate to get these marches underway.

    They know this will raise her profile, leading to ANOTHER five years of meaningless drivel about indyRef2 and how Boris won’t give her permission to hold it.

    We need a new leader at Holyrood and List Parties set up to keep the SNP honest.

  41. Bob Mack says:

    @Walter Jones,

    Marches will not help Sturgeon. It has gone beyond that stage.I

    They will keep the spirit of Indy alive if anything. I think many now regard voting for a second Indy Party as inevitable.

    That may focus minds at SNP HQ.

  42. Confused says:

    “on the march” – dubious overtones …

    another take

    the SNP at the prospect of indy (01.41)

    – but kenny’s alright, he’s been up there, done stuff and he talks to us without calling us a “reactionary alliance of transphobes” – that he’s almost a pariah, says a lot

  43. robertknight says:

    Only march worth going on is the one which concludes outside 5 Charlotte Square, with a sit-down protest by the silent majority who expect the FM/SNP to do exactly what it says on the tin.

  44. Oneliner says:

    I am a person of Scotland so I have joint sovereignty. How do I assert my sovereignty in a meaningful way?

    Is it by voting SNP? Is it by marching with a flag? And with whom do I share sovereignty? If I go to live in England, I do not become English, so does an English person coming to live in Scotland become Scottish and have joint sovereignty?

    Unattributed sources state that in 2014, 51% of Scots-born voted Yes and 74% of English-born voted No. If ‘Sovereignty of the Scottish people’ was meaningful, that is/was a majority for Independence.

    Yet here we are dancing on the pin head of Westminster with it’s Section 30 / Barnett Consequentials / English votes for English Laws (and English votes for Scottish laws) – don’t bother to march, someone’s bound to fall off. Enough already, the spooks are having a laugh.

  45. Oneliner says:

    Sorry about the rogue apostrophe above – grammarians amongst the spookeratti will have noticed.

  46. Helen Yates says:

    I’ve no doubt that Covid19 is being warmly welcomed by some but I agree as lockdown is now easing we seriously need to up our game, it’s looking quite likely we will be back in lockdown come the winter so we have no time to waste in making a very big statement.

  47. CameronB Brodie says:

    How do we assert our sovereignty? Refer to international law and tell Westminster that Scotland is no longer bound by Westminster’s assumed authority. Which lacks moral and legal substance. To do otherwise undermines the international rule-of-law.

    Fordham International Law Journal, Volume 24, Issue 5 2000 Article 1
    Popular Sovereignty and International Law: ICJ Strategies for Human Rights Standard Setting

  48. Alec Lomax says:

    A March ! In the middle of a pandemic. Crackers !

  49. ahundredthidiot says:

    Stuart Mackay @ 14:30

    Have you thought about the crowd size (not capacity) quadrupling in size and what that means for how long it will run for and the impact on public safety issues for things like responding emergency vehicles?

    I smell a trap. you can bang on all you like about my lack of creativity and boxing gloves on a stick, but my fear is that they are not permitted at all.

    Perhaps we would be wise to expect to feel the full weight of COVID regs on this one. AUOB should be wary/not set itself up for a fall, that’s all.

  50. Bob Mack says:

    The current version of the SNP are not the route to Independence,but we are. If we decide to march to keep the Indy flag flying because nobody else is currently doing so then good enough.

    I’m not ashamed to demand Indy on the streets of my country.

    Let’s make the SNP join us,rather than allow them to hijack the swell towards Indy as it suits them. They have detached themselves far too long, and shamefully the leader of the party for Indy cannot bring herself to even talk to the marches..

  51. CameronB Brodie says:

    I’m not joking. If the Scottish government does not protect Scotland from Berxit through recourse to international law, they are complicit in enabling English fascism.

    European Journal of International Law, Volume 22, Issue 2, May 2011, Pages 373–387
    Sovereignty, International Law and Democracy

  52. Ottomanboi says:

    [She said that images of people meeting in bars and restaurants with little or no physical distancing “made her want to cry”.]
    Enough of this sentimental nonsense FM, got a qualification in virology have you? Do you actually care about Scotland’s well being, its economy, its citizen’s livelihoods or just enjoying the little dictator rôle?
    As for the sentimental MacAskill piece…..a march with ‘social distancing’ following ‘the guidance’, why bother as your party seems to have ideologically distanced itself from independence and is happy to do so. Independence pathogenic to the devolution gravy train…..

  53. Flower of Scotland says:

    Really glad to see a piece that you’ve written for Wings. Most SNP politicians turn their noses up at this site but Wings aka the Rev did more than most to educate folk and push the YES vote to 45%.

    I used to leaflet for you in the early 1980s in and around West Calder. You were a great candidate then and so pleased to see you back in a political role!

    Marches help to raise the profile of Independence for Scotland but helps us YES voters too with the camaraderie and fun. It’s not always much fun being a YES voter these days when mandates are ditched and we feel let down by the hierarchy of the SNP.

    Good to see this!

  54. Willie says:

    A socially distanced march in Glasgow would be absolutely huge, would lift spirits, and would be a signal that the independence campaign is back.

    And yes, Kenny MacAskil is absolutely bang on when he says we should be taking the message in to the housing schemes, giving inspiration and hope.

  55. Dogbiscuit says:

    Jimarelene SNP politicians voted for the covid 19 Bill that granted power to Johnson to rule your life by fiat. Right now you are on parole nothing more.
    You’ll stand in line and take your Government mandated vaccine.

  56. Black Joan says:

    Yes, symbolism matters. That would be why they’ve re-badged the Scottish Office as “the UK Government in Scotland” in pretentious new Edinburgh offices and with a cunning plan:

    By 2020 we will have:

    A settled position for Scotland in the United Kingdom with increased recognition of what the UK Government delivers in Scotland.
    A recognisable outward UK Government brand in Scotland.
    A regular, constructive dialogue with stakeholders who believe the UK Government in Scotland is visible, accessible and collaborative.
    Appropriate premises to headquarter the UK Government in Scotland.
    All UK Government employees in Scotland feel part of the UK Government family.

    Maybe not so wise to call themselves OSSS, though? Out Size SS? Then again . . .

  57. Stuart MacKay says:


    I agree that the MSM would spin the march in any way possible to make it look bad. However COVID-19 is not going away any time soon. Even with a vaccine that works beyond people’s wildest dreams it’s going to take time to reduce the risk to more vulnerable sections of the population. So, what to do, what to do?

    Well, we could just sit back and watch the grabbing hands at Westminster grab all they call, all for themselves… Or, people start making a stand. The SNP leadership are currently on an independence-lite diet so that leaves AUOB and others. The marches are popular and it would be very interesting to see what happens with turnout this time around. With a little bit of thought it seems that resuming them is doable and to our advantage as well.

  58. Morgatron says:

    Great words from Kenny Mck , let’s get marching with every saltire we can muster.

  59. CameronB Brodie says:

    If the Scottish government is not prepared to defend the rule-of-law, which they patently are not, then Scotland must prepare itself for total cultural subordination to the racist patriarchy of authoritarian, right-wing, populist, English nationalism.

    Full text.

    Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, 2019
    Popular sovereignty facing the deep state. The rule of recognition and the powers of the people

  60. Dogbiscuit says:

    Kenny MacAskills attempts to abolish corroboration from criminal trials when he was Justice Minister shows he is as great a threat to democracy as the criminal Sturgeon.
    Don’t be fooled by your virtue signalling leadership .They despise democracy and they do not work for us.
    My only hesitation inviting for Independence in 2014 was K MacAskills contempt for the legal system. Without corroboration you have witch trials.

  61. Dogbiscuit says:

    March to the top of the hill and then what?

  62. CameronB Brodie says:

    British constitutionalism is blind to international law and human rights, so it offers no support for Scotland’s cultural integrity.

    Fordham International Law Journal, Volume 18, Issue 5 1994 Article 13
    External Sovereignty and International Law

  63. Dogbiscuit says:

    Hey MacAskill hows about handing back our freedom? Any chance ?
    We are under house arrest allowed out by Johnson’s permission and people here think Independence is going to happen .Will the Scunner give you permission for a walk?
    Open order marching due to covid restrictions.Ha .What a joke.
    I’m telling you folks the Scottish Government are taking advantage of ‘covid ‘ in order to flush Independence down the toilet. All our dreams go flushing down the pan.
    I don’t think the Tyrant Sturgeon should be trusted with a country.
    Right now Government policy throws my children’s future into chaos one going to go to Uni the other missing a year of schooling. Thanks for fucking nothing you bastard idiot politicians. Any body taking bullshit from MacAskill has learned nothing during their imprisonment.

  64. Alec Lomax says:

    Dogbiscuit – it’s the way you tell ’em !

  65. Dogbiscuit says:

    One hoping to go to Uni.

  66. schrodingers cat says:

    March to the top of the hill and then what?

    watch lemmings like you continue over the cliff 🙂

  67. Gerry Parker says:

    The car convoy on Saturday was a good start, the Bridge flags are another great idea and should be re started.

  68. CameronB Brodie says:

    I hope folk can distinguish between my contribution and the biscuit’s right-wing populism.


  69. You can march all you want it won’t make any difference they will just ignore you but if you were to be marching in your thousands with guns in hands ???

  70. Dogbiscuit says:

    Alex Lomax you show the same lack of concern for the effects of bad fascist policies as many invested in ‘lockdown’ on here. Another SNP shill trying to maintain a bogus sense of emergency. It’s fucking outrageous what your party is doing to people.

  71. Dogbiscuit says:

    Cameron away and jigger yourself ya selfish old man.

  72. Dogbiscuit says:

    Schrodingle while prat’s like you entice fools over the edge.

  73. Dogbiscuit says:

    If you march the media and the political class will give you dogs abuse for ‘risking lives’ .Stay safe.

  74. CameronB Brodie says:

    It simply isn’t possible to defend the rule-of-law and democracy, if you deny science. So the Scottish government and idiots like the biscuit, appear determined to undermine Scottish democracy.

    To What Extent Does International Law Reflect the Sovereign Will of States?

  75. Dogbiscuit says:

    Helen Yates you sound as if you accept the idea of being locked down again. What is wrong with you people?

  76. Dogbiscuit says:

    A mask with a saltire? What an insult to the flag to plaster it on a muzzle.

  77. CameronB Brodie says:

    The biscuit is not simply a bit daft, he appears to be hostile to ethical rationalism and public health ethics. In other words, a total right-wing zoomer.

    UNESCO provides Ethical Frameworks to COVID-19 Responses

    Despite the lockdown measures, prominent ethicists, bioethicists, philosophers, and healthcare professionals from around the world have taken up the challenge in sending from their homes a series of videos, highlighting the key ethical considerations, as well as practical recommendations to assist the frontline fighters against the virus and its long-term social impacts.

  78. Oneliner says:


    I pay attention because that’s the way I am – how would your Irish antecedents have handled the situation?

  79. Harry mcaye says:

    Dogbiscuit, what a fanny you are. This “bogus emergency” has cost 2,491 Scots their lives, many dying before their time. It has also left many with horrendous after-effects. There hasn’t been a country of similar population anywhere in the world as badly hit as Scotland.

    The idea we should be marching anytime soon is fucking crazy. How do you socially distance in those tight Edinburgh streets of any streets for that matter? One sure fire way to turn people off – those Nationalists don’t think the rules apply to them.

  80. callmedave says:


    N. Ireland………….00…….Total……556….BBC
    England…………….05.sun…Total….41598…WM Gov
    UK…………….today…….09…….Total….46210…WM Gov

  81. Robert Graham says:

    Mr Biscuit @4:44
    Oh Dear Calm Doon Pal yer losing it big time have a lie down
    Eh maybe work on the Tourette’s bit it needs some refinement just saying like
    You take care now

  82. CameronB Brodie says:

    If the Scottish government is unable to defend the international rule-of-law, then Scotland deserves a new government. It certainly does not deserve cultural eradication at the hands of authoritarian English Torydum.

    Chicago Journal of International Law, Volume 1 Number 1 Article 4, 3-1-2000
    Speaking Law to Power: Popular Sovereignty, Human Rights, and
    the New International Order

  83. X_Sticks says:

    I’m with Gerry – bridge flags. Easy to keep social distancing. Test out our Yes groups coordination and try and cover as many bridges as possible across Scotland. Pick any Saturday. No one could complain and it could have big impact.

  84. Pete says:

    Harry Macaye
    I think we’ll lose a lot more Scots than 2500 due to lack of treatment for cancer, heart problems, you name it.
    You now see the job losses kicking in which is just the start of economic Armageddon.
    The deaths from COVID are miniscule in the grand scheme of what people die from every day.
    Around 80% of deaths are from over 80’s and those with health issues. I don’t think anybody has died from it in Scotland for a couple of weeks and yet, about a dozen test positive in Lanarkshire and Aberdeen and the Fuhrer is talking about shutting pubs again.
    This is madness of the highest order.
    Just look at the crowds marching through Berlin on Saturday.
    I’m sure this is just the start.
    I, for one, will not be muzzled by some silly little politician on a power trip.
    March for Scotland- what a laugh!!
    What a shower of wimps the Scottish people are
    We should be out marching for freedom and democracy from this awful tyranny.

  85. schrodingers cat says:


    agreed, its probably too soon for a full scale march but easily organised small scale ops could restart

    bridge flags
    roadside demos(not on the border!!)
    car cavalcades

    we need to prove that this can be done safely and the organisation is in place

    any other ideas?

  86. Tannadice Boy says:

    If an emotional argument was the single biggest determinant of success we would won Indy the first time. On this occasion I don’t agree with MacAskill. How about an Indy economic plan?. A route map? Any kind of thought put into the way ahead. I don’t see it and until the intellectual case is made Indy is doomed to failure. Make the case! I come back in today and the usual suspects posting nonsense. Make the case!

  87. mike cassidy says:

    Pete 5.58

    We should be out marching for freedom and democracy from this awful tyranny.

    Who is stopping you?

  88. Clapper57 says:

    George Kerevan column in The National cites “Bojo’s newest recruits, Levido, Topin & Guerin. New Zealand spin doctors who will put the case for the union with whatever tactics available. Remember their names comrades, They play dirty”.

    Meanwhile for two of those New Zealand SPIN Doctors :

    “Two 20-something New Zealanders have scored a £3 million contract to handle UK Coronavirus communications”….without Tender…..

    New Zealand you say…is that not where Aaron Banks and Andy Wigmore are to help out a right wing politician’s party….

    Then we have Dan Wooten New Zealander on anti Scottish Indy patrol…..via Talk Sheeite Radio…..Dan worked for The Sun…say no more….

    Never mind the Russians it seems we are being attacked by right wing New Zealanders…..where did they come from…the rear ?

    Tell me is there NO country excluded from ‘Foreign interference’ in Scottish affairs… England so weak that they need others to fight their battles for them…I mean how bad can this Union be if they need ‘foreign influence’ to spin the case for the Union…but obvs only CERTAIN ‘foreign influencers’…..the RIGHT kind of ‘foreign influencers’ that are acceptable to Tories….

    How are they going to present the case for the Union in stating ‘Don’t take back control….give it to another country’….cause no matter how they WANT to spin it the bottom line is that’s what they want Scots to vote for…….

    Memo to fellow Scots….beware of Spin Doctors from distant shores ….hired by Tories…who only exist to manipulate how you think…feel…and ultimately VOTE…for a fee of course…for them….not YOU….once job done they move on to another one….hopefully Scots will break the trend and ignore them……and their corrupt influence….God willing…and obvs Scots too…..

  89. C Griffiths says:

    Not in a pandemic, not a good idea. As soon as it is safe to do, of course, but not right now. Nothing stopping ppl planning for the march though.

  90. Beaker says:

    Marching could end up being counter-productive. There are enough public transport restrictions without adding road closures. Also a lot of people currently work from home so the weekend is the only time they can get into city & town centres. But you need permission to hold a march first. Doubt that will be forthcoming.

    As to bridge flags. If you are referring to those hung over the side on motorways and dual carriageways you are asking for trouble from the police. It is illegal to display anything that could distract drivers (that from a road traffic consultant). The last thing you need is an accident caused by a fucking flag. Was this stunt not tried before?

  91. schrodingers cat says:


    the bridge flags has been done before very successfully

    the honk for indy demos at the side of the road work well in deepest darkest fife (hint, we’re too poor here and canny afford bridges etc)

    the car cavalcades, organised with police permission, have been very successful

  92. Beaker says:

    Just to be clear if the police are upset about you waving a flag on a bridge, you can be charged with culpable and reckless conduct.

  93. schrodingers cat says:


    just tweeted @bridgesforindy to ask his advice about this

  94. Newburghgowfer says:

    Marches have only proved that the appetite for Indy exists but hasn’t changed 1 little thing in regards to how WM treats Scotland.
    If all the money spent by people in travelling and eating etc on the day had been funnelled into creating our own TV channel/ Dab Radio station it would get the message across daily instead of a Family fun Day which it seems to have become.
    Want to do a March, travel to London, that will rattle them. See how they react to 100,000 on the streets marching peacefully!!
    No point in marching in same place as its been done.
    I can write the media reports now if required ?

  95. schrodingers cat says:


    the article is highlighting our restrictions, the limitations on what we can do.

  96. James Che. says:

    Why not on the border in Scotland . Are there no Scottish people there that would love to support Scottish independence, to join in , to part of the marches for independence.?
    Why are the marches always held in street tight cities or towns, why not along the Scottish border, where all media would talk about the obvious politics of that instance more than any other march that has always previously been ignored.
    The biggest benefit is it is out in the fresh air, no one could accuse the yes march of congregating in town squares or streets, we would be more than able to maintain social distances and those who wish to wear masks could and those that object to masks being worn show more Scottish politeness than usual and respect others by not being to close,
    The only problem with getting together for a march is inside the heads of those that protest to loudly me thinks.

  97. schrodingers cat says:


    re marches, aye ok, but maybe not just yet. that doesnt mean we cant kick start the indy campaign with other actions more in line with restrictions.

  98. Bill Hume says:

    I have decided to stop reading Wings BTL. There is so much shite posted these days that it’s just not worth the effort.
    My apologies to the real Wingers who try to make valid points, you have my sympathy and good wishes.

    I shall of course, continue to read what the Rev posts, even when it can be uncomfortable reading, but sometimes a little discomfort is what is needed.

  99. Harry mcaye says:

    Pete, so the days that saw 84, 83, 83 again, 80 deaths in a country of 5.45 million people didn’t phase you? Slovakia has virtually the same population – they have had 29 deaths. Dying at 80 can still be before your time.

    Have you not been paying attention to the US, where they thought they were over the worst of it, relaxed and now every day sees between 60-70,000 new cases. Or Serbia, where they were ambling along on one or two deaths a day, they relaxed, some bright spark held a tennis tournament and now they’re seeing 8-14 deaths a day. This thing can easily return but I get the feeling some folk will only take it seriously when it affects them.

  100. mike cassidy says:


    Or maybe not.

    A reminder that thinking you are living through unprecedented times

    Is a luxury of the young.

    If you are older you know you are not.

  101. Walter Jones says:

    Fuckin hell

    Here was me hoping the Cat had been run doon by a ten ton bus.

    Ah well,,,looks as if we are in for another night of, one post to us, one post to Cat, one post to us, one post to Cat, you get the idea.

    Get used to it, because the guy is just one ignorant selfish bastard.

  102. Wee Chid says:

    Many, many marchers are older people and unfortunately some of us are are still isolating – and will be for some time to come. It’s just a pity there had not been support for a “big march” from SNP officials when many of us were marching our socks off – Aye- wait until it’s impossible and then lend support. Thanks.

  103. Dogbiscuit says:

    Given that Murdo Frazer MSP is the convener of Holyroods covid 19 committee it’s remarkable that Nicola Sturgeons health advisor-who is linked to the Clinton Foundation-has blocked him on Twitter. She apparently blocks any MSP who asks her covid related questions. Very defensive behaviour from a Government adviser who Sturgeon treats as the word of scientific God.
    Remember anyone who says they have ‘the’ science behind their policies is bullshitting .They usually come up with very little science but much arcane waffle.

  104. CameronB Brodie says:

    re. kick starting the indy campaign. Why not force our government not make recourse to international law? Or have we given up hope that the Scottish government is capable of defending the rule-of-law?

    Human Rights Law Review 11:4 The Author [2011]
    The Normative Status of Self-Determination in International Law: A Formulafor Uncertainty in the Scope and Content of the Right?

    In this article I seek to identify and explore some of the legal consequences that flow from the various normative levels that have been ascribed to the right of self-determination in international legal doctrine.

    Four normative levels are considered: human right, association with sovereignty, erga omnes and jus cogens. A particular focus of the article is on how the doctrinal debate surrounding each normative level might impact on the willingness of states to help improve the determinacy of the scope and content of the right.

    I argue that there is a haziness surrounding the normative status of the right to self-determination and that this can help to explain the reluctance of states to publicise their views on the scope and content of the norm in international
    law. The article concludes with suggestions as to how a clearer understanding of the normative status of the right to self-determination might be achieved.

    international law, self-determination, jus cogens, erga omnes, sovereignty

  105. Tartan Tory says:

    I’ve been on many of the AUOB marches and I’m also one of the Yes Bikers. I’d relish the chance to do another, but….

    Even if every single marcher maintained a strict social distance, (difficult for any organiser to arrange due to the fact that some members of the same household wouldn’t need to do so), a proficient MSM photographer with the right lens and the right vantage point could produce an image which made it look like an utterly irresponsible flock of SNP sheep!

    The front pages showing crowds on Bournemouth Beach used exactly the same technique. The vast bulk of people there were actually distant from their neighbouring sun worshipers, but that’s not the story painted by the pictures. And we all know how many words a single picture paints.

  106. Tannadice Boy says:

    Mike Cassidy says

    Well said. 1979 Hong Kong Flu. 35000 extra deaths. I caught it myself in my bed for a fortnight. Do I think the Corona response has been good in Scotland? Not so far but it would appear to be a novel virus so I cut them a lot of slack. Why can’t Government say we don’t know. I would respect them more.

  107. Dogbiscuit says:

    Harry Mackay still with the Tory fear monger img eh? More people are being tested so more show positives =herd immunity. Wouldn’t it be nice if our children could have their lives back?
    Frightened hard of thinking plebs will suck up Gates vaccine and ‘Health Passports’
    Those who refuse to comply will be treated as internal exiles .Dissidents ‘the others’ .
    Watching some of you lot it’s no longer difficult to understand why the Germans went crazy in 1933.

  108. gordon kemp says:

    If it’s illegal to display anything that could distract drivers, what are billboards all about?

  109. twathater says:

    Unfortunately I think we are missing the point, I have been on at least 4 marches with my good lady wife and daughter , I am an auld Croc it was hard but the feeling of camaraderie was brilliant, but I will not go on marches and neither will my wife or daughter who are both real women until the reviled GRA and HCB are ditched and NS has STATED categorically that the next HR will be a plebiscite election with independence being the sole mandate

    I refuse to do ANYTHING that encourages NS to assume that I support any of those policies and her pedestrian attitude to independence

    I WOULD go on a demonstration that showed contempt for her leadership and failure to STOP Scotland being brexshited

  110. Dogbiscuit says:

    Harry Mackay you do realise there is some contention over covid death statistics ? It seems many ‘covid’ deaths were wrongly sometimes criminally ascribed .People dying With covid is not quite the same as dying Of covid.
    You know all this stuff and if you and Robert Graham cannot see the contradictions and anomalies in the- both -Governments lines then you are mere buffoons .

  111. Dogbiscuit says:

    Harry your death figures are statistically minuscule so fear more the Government that has removed your freedom .Its telling that no one on here not evenKenny MacAskill will address the removal of our civic rights and freedoms.Why are we being compelled by Government fiat when all the evidence shows covid on the way out.

  112. CameronB Brodie says:

    You’d do us all a huge favour if you stopped punting your right-wing bollocks, you tit.

    Using social and behavioural science to support COVID-19 pandemic response

    The COVID-19 pandemic represents a massive global health crisis. Because the crisis requires large-scale behaviour change and places significant psychological burdens on individuals, insights from the social and behavioural sciences can be used to help align human behaviour with the recommendations of epidemiologists and public health experts.

    Here we discuss evidence from a selection of research topics relevant to pandemics, including work on navigating threats, social and cultural influences on behaviour, science communication, moral decision-making, leadership, and stress and coping. In each section, we note the nature and quality of prior research, including uncertainty and unsettled issues.

    We identify several insights for effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic and highlight important gaps researchers should move quickly to fill in the coming weeks and months.

  113. Bob Mack says:


    It was The Tory government who claimed that Covid deaths were overestimated wasnt it? Nice to see you swallow solid Tory propoganda.

  114. Dogbiscuit says:

    Why is it alright for people to die of everything other than covid 19?
    Why is it alright to ruin children’s life chances -child abuse by Government- but it’s not alright to get a strain of flu?
    Why is it alright to utterly fuck your economy to death but it’s so so wrong for some to die of covid? People arguing on behalf of Tyrants are useful idiots.

  115. Dogbiscuit says:

    Bob Mack you know I’ve been making that argument for months and the Tories will go nowhere with the knowledge .Its time for you to wake up.

  116. Bob Mack says:

    As opposed to a useless idiot?

  117. Dogbiscuit says:

    Bob do you still think the Tories are underestimating death figures?

  118. CameronB Brodie says:

    Gonna just shut the fuck up about covid-19, as you’re clearly driven by ideology and not reason.

    Do not violate the International Health Regulations during the COVID-19 outbreak

  119. Dogbiscuit says:

    Ya frightened old freedom fighters.

  120. Bob Mack says:


    55000 excess deaths above and beyond what would be expected in the time frame involved.

    At a time there was no major industry, reduced traffic,reduced leisure activity, reduced sport.reduced everything that puts humans at risk of injury.

    What was killing that extra number. Boredom?

  121. Alec Lomax says:

    Dogbiscuit – David McIcke.

  122. Dogbiscuit says:

    Cameron the theft of our freedom and the distinct likelihood of mandated vaccinations of dubious nature is THE pressing political issue of our age. I don’t think you realise what is happening in our country.
    Politicians journalists and Bill Gates shoot the breeze with each other over what they are going to do to the human race but no one asks us.Why not?
    You know that most of your links are no more than digital arse paper don’t you?
    Give yourself another shot of Largactyle and read some light fiction for a change. Harry Potter is highly recommended. I can’t recall the authors name.

  123. Dogbiscuit says:

    Alex Lomax nice one.

  124. Bob Mack says:


    Try to understand this basic fact. Being discharged from hospital after suffering from civic does not mean you are completely cured.

    Many are left with lingering disability ‘re walking ‘re breathing ‘re heart problems and a host of other physical ailments. These can become severe.

    Your normal lifespan can be reduced significantly from your average expectancy.

    That is just medical fact.

  125. bipod says:

    55000 excess deaths over what would be expected, but not unheard of during flu outbreaks. The excess death rate is now below the average for this time of year. What does that mean? Its quite likely that covid mostly only killed people who were already on end of life care and it just brought the deaths forward a month or two.

    Its tragic for them and their families but its hardly a reason to crash the entire economy and ruin the lives of millions of people, over a virus for the vast majority is no more dangerous than seasonal flu.

    And if this experience has proven anything, its that lockdowns do not work.

  126. Bob Mack says:


    We haven’t had a flu outbreak That joy awaits us too.vaccination does help though.

  127. ahundredthidiot says:

    seasonal flu in early 2015 was more devastating than COVID.

    That is also just a fact. It might be hard on the ears, but it’s true. Had half a million people died in a 12 week period, trust me, I would be getting right behind this (as opposed to playing along with it).

    What we need now is perspective, rational thinking and an appropriate response to a virus which ends the lives of the elderly earlier than they should expire and in a way that is not desirable.

  128. CameronB Brodie says:

    You’re a total disgrace to Scotland. Sort yourself out or fuck off.

    COVID-19: Public/Global Health Law and Ethics in Pandemic: Human Rights and Model Public Health Laws

  129. Bob Mack says:


    What if we had covid as well in 2015?

  130. schrodingers cat says:

    walter jones

    are clearly a unionist trolls

    already today we have lost another long term winger

    “Bill Hume says:
    I have decided to stop reading Wings BTL. There is so much shite posted these days that it’s just not worth the effort.”

    I’m hardly stus flavour of the month so no point in me contacting him.

    if someone doesnt. the site will be over run

  131. ahundredthidiot says:

    Bob Mack

    COVID in 2015 would’ve been spotted – The way people are dying would’ve flagged it wasn’t a normal flu – also, even in a seasonal flu epidemic, virus testing is still carried out for mutations.

  132. bipod says:

    @Bob Mack

    It has been pointed out numerous times on this site that we have had flu outbreaks in the past that killed just as or nearly as many people as this. If you go further back the Hong Kong flu killed more people in the UK and that was with a smaller population.

    Normally we don’t have power hungry politicians crashing the economy and stealing our liberty over the flu. I suspect when the flu does arrive this year the covid bedwetters will demand another useless lockdown, because covid and the flu target virtually the same people with the same symptoms.

  133. ahundredthidiot says:


    unfortunately for you, I am a long term winger, I remember when you used to make some sense.

  134. A Person says:

    I doubt this will be a popular opinion but marches are counter-productive. Yes, political enthusiasts like us enjoy and are inspired by them but they repel the very voters we need to attract.

    I am thinking in particular of my sister, who voted No in 2014 but has told me she has moved towards Yes. I can just hear her reaction to a group of people in kilts, outfits, face paint and branded masks chanting slogans and disrupting the traffic. “Weirdo artist types”, “don’t they have anything better to do”, “that lot are a cult”. You hear this kind of attitude all the time in shops, pubs, and cafes and on social media. Scotland is a culturally conservative, and rather cynical, country and people don’t trust enthusiasm about politics. It’s just a big outing and a real case of preaching to the choir, I doubt that anyone has ever been persuaded to vote Yes by a march. We like them. Most people don’t.

    Also, imagine the media’s reaction to such a large gathering during this pandemic. Don’t start on about “what about Bournemouth beach”, we all know the media in this country hate us, let’s not give them what they want.

    Sorry if this offends anyone but we need to be pragmatic, not self-indulgent.

  135. A Person says:

    On a more cheerful note, Douglas Ross apparently wants to lead a pro-Boris, pro-Brexit Scottish Tory party, so it’s not just us being self-indulgent

  136. Bob Mack says:

    Civic and flu are NOT the same symptoms

  137. CameronB Brodie says:

    Brexit destroyed what little moral and legal substance British constitutionalism could lay claim to. So allowing English Torydum to determine Scotland’s constitutional identity, is pretty much the same as legally endorsing genderwoowoo. It simply can’t be considered consistent with supporting liberal democracy. Given the nature of threat from covid-19, the Scottish government must tell Westminster it no longer control Scotland. Unfortunately for Scotland, the Scottish government does not appear capable of supporting the rule-of-law.

    Beyond liberty: social values and public health ethics in responses to COVID-19

    Legal and policy responses to COVID-19 rest on and express the balance of different basic values and principles. Earlier and current regulatory approaches bring into sharp relief how liberty must be understood and weighed against other values. This is for the sake of liberty itself, but crucially too for other compelling aspects of social justice.

  138. Gregor says:

    Please do not live under trepidation: Fear, division & helplessness is what ‘THEY’ seek.

    Live life today – for our future…

  139. Bob Mack says:

    Thank you Gregor. Nicely put.

  140. Beaker says:

    To those still annoyed by the lockdown, two suggestions:

    First – take legal action against the Scottish and UK governments, saying that their actions are a breach of your human rights. See how far you get.

    Second – try and understand infection control. It’s a bit like decontamination. What you do is isolate those infected, control access to these people and thoroughly clean the affected areas.

    Infection spreads in a geometric rate. To put it simply, think of someone breaking wind silently in a crowded shop or train (we’ve all done it, come on). One fart – twenty victims. The smell wafts around the location and the first indication is when they smell it (or possibly their eyes start watering). It’s too late to get out of the way. If you hear it though, you have a chance to escape. Your number of victims is reduced.

    That is why lockdown is used as a preventative measure. Unfortunately, too many people – the public, government officials – have decided to flout the rules, making it harder to enforce it.

    I’m not saying it has been planned or implemented efficiently, but the primary reason remains the same – public safety.

  141. Breastplate says:

    Again, emotionally held beliefs are not conducive to logical or reasonable debate.
    Name calling after exasperated attempts to change somebody’s mind seems to be the order of the day.

    The Coronavirus, SARS CoV 2, Covid 19 has been sensationalised by the media, and why shouldn’t it be, bad news always sells. This very site has had people horrified at the varying mortality rates of 30%, 20%, 10% and other figures. WHO have a report out today of 0.6% mortality rate.

    This pandemic has been a godsend for newspapers willing to scare the bejesus out of people.
    Like pretty much everything, there are pros and cons.
    Disagree if you wish

  142. george wood says:

    You have to laugh at the armchair experts who claim to know more the the combined scientific experts of practically every government in the world.

    It’s scientists that are driving the response not politicians. Unfortunately some countries are not fully listening to their scientists and they are seeing the good work of lock-down being wasted by rising infections and deaths.

    The scientific community are in agreement that the big mistake most governments have made was not going into lock-down quickly enough. Italy showed the world that delaying lock-down was a stupid mistake and it was the result of trying to not upset businesses.

    Sweden has apologised for getting it so wrong and if, as is likely, the world goes into recession then Sweden’s economy will as well and all they will have achieved is more deaths than they should have had for no economic benefit.

  143. Bob Mack says:

    Difficult to think of suitably small but national demonstration of Indy wishes. I have tried the usual stuff like car stickers, and have twice had my car (keyed).

    I wouldn’t want Indy supporters in small groups either for obvious reasons in some areas.

    It’s an enigma.

  144. Orlando Quarmby says:

    The movement spent the past half decade marching while being cold-shouldered by the Sturgeon leadership – unlike anything to do with gay right, where she was happy to be seen in the front ranks. More importantly, the independence movement has loyally got out and voted the SNP mandates specifically giving ScotGov an Indy lifeboat to launch in precisely the circumstances of England’s government dragging Scotland out of the EU against its will. So, Kenny MacAskill, the Indy movement has MORE than fulfilled its side of the bargain by marching, campaigning and voting the SNP a stack of Indy mandates which lie unused after Sturgeon chose to subject the exercise of Scotland’s people’s sovereignty to the S30 say so of English politicians. The onus now is entirely upon the SNP ScotGov to fulfill its side of the bargain by delivering on what it was multi mandated to do – not have the brass neck to tell us to get out marching again to keep us occupied pending their asking us for ANOTHER mandate next year for their collection. If they’re too busy with their GRA agenda before HR21 to take Indy down off the shelf they’ve put it on, then their last chance to secure the trust of the movement is to abandon the S30 shite and run HR21 as a plebiscite election for Indy. Plenty of other countries have taken their independence that way.

  145. jockmcx says:

    1 ent = 500 hobits (or indy supporters)
    use your feckin imagination…the world just changed!

  146. Bob Mack says:

    @George Wood,

    Yes. Incredible people are so blase. Maybe because they don’t think they will get it. Without vaccine this virus is going nowhere and it will eventually if unchecked reach member of the population at some point. That’s the reality.

    That gives us here immunity.some will be immune.Some will be ill.Some will die.

  147. ahundredthidiot says:

    Beaker, in referring to lockdowns, says

    ‘but the primary reason remains the same – public safety.’

    trouble is though Beaker, you have no evidence to suggest lockdowns actually work. Thankfully, we have an experiment in Sweden – which didn’t lockdown. Instead, they tried to protect their elderly (and made some mistakes, they admit), but over the piece, they have had similar deaths as similar sized countries which did lockdown. People will always be able to point out differences when making comparisons though and round in circles that argument goes.

    Remember though that SAGE predicted 500,000 deaths in the UK if there was no lockdown – that was their justification.

    You do make a good point about the fart though – herd immunity has gotten the species this far – despite the unpleasant terminology, it has been a crucial part of our survival for millennia. Vaccines – all looking good so far, but probably too early to tell because in the great scheme of things, they are about two minutes old.

  148. jockmcx says:

    send your shoes on a march,or your underpants!

  149. Breastplate says:

    Bob, you are correct as everything has a risk factor.
    How do we assess a risk factor properly through the lens of hysteria?

  150. velofello says:

    dogbiscuit: Jeez, you truly are a busy person/s. Well it’s a free country ,,,to say or do for instance …

    Speech? – Humza Yousef’ hate Bill?

    Liberty and justice? – Julian Assange

    Politics? – Scotland is exitting the EU, by English diktat.

    But just you carry on taking up space though it does seem to deter folk from commenting as there are so much repeated drivel posted, crowding out the less… frenetic?

  151. jockmcx says:

    a big inflatable jobby with brexit on it.

  152. Bob Mack says:


    Turn off your predicatext Jock!!

  153. Bob Mack says:


    Och leave him alone. Dog biscult doesn’t have a Scooby. Get it.? About anything actually.Needs a Shaggy.

  154. Breastplate says:

    Orlando Quarmby
    Well said, the Yes Movement have been nothing short of fantastic and it’s time the SNP held up their side of the bargain.

  155. JayR says:

    Exchange on Twitter between 2 members of the SNP NEC. Looks like, as I imagined, Rhiannon Spear and Graham Campbell are probably behind this shitestorm

  156. velofello says:

    And thank you Kenny MacAskilL, I agree with the content of your article. The Independence Movement need’s to become visible.

    Door chapping, probably not a good measure;Leafletting yes;marches yes, masks and distancing need not be a problem.

    The NEC debacle is a warning that we cannot/must not simply rely on the SNP.

    How many times have we heard the SNP at Westminster… “Scotland will not be taken out of the EU”…and?

  157. Bob Mack says:

    @Jay R,

    For the benefit of those without twitter what’s the implication?

  158. defo says:

    To Derby it is then.
    Scrolling finger’s burning tonight.

  159. Bob Mack says:

    Anyone able to update me on Mr Keatings case ‘re section 30.

    The timeline I last saw means the case must be very close to full hearing

  160. McDuff says:

    I`m sorry but its just more waffle.
    We know about marching because we have being doing it for years and will continue to do so.
    Kenny, what`s the plan, the strategy, you don’t have to give anything away to the yoons but give us a wee hint of something. No?
    As you were.

  161. george wood says:

    @Ahundrethidiot 8.47pm

    You are quite a bit off the mark with your claim that Sweden was trying to protect it’s elderly during this pandemic.

    Sweden, at a time when the world knew that this virus disproportionately affected the elderly was still allowing unfettered access to care homes. This went on into April until, under pressure from the scientific community in Sweden, the man in charge of their covid response had to relent and put restrictions on access to care homes.

    They were only counting deaths from hospitals at that time and were not considering deaths in care homes which doesn’t match with your contention that they were concentrating on the elderly. They may have changed their counting method since then, so I don’t know if there death total counts non-hospital deaths now – I suspect it does.

    Sweden has had the worst record by some distance of the Scandinavian countries which is their usual benchmark.

    Sweden also has one of the largest percentage of single occupancy dwellings in the world which gives it a huge advantage in a pandemic.

  162. twathater says:

    @ Orlando Quarmby 8.41pm Thank you for your post as it was exactly what I was going to post .

    Respect to Kenny Mc Askill for posting on WOS but what you should be doing is making your colleagues aware of how disgruntled and angry we independence supporters are after us doing our bit by elections and mandates whilst our politicians are BETRAYING us by not doing their JOB

    Marches although enjoyable are just a distraction from the REAL ACTION

  163. Robert Louis says:

    I have a lot of time for Kenny Macaskill. A man of principle. I recall going to a rather odd session once, during conference, when he was justice secretary, and he was giving a talk on something or other to a group of assembled people – it may have been victim support. More than the content of what he said, I recall thinking to myself, look, here we have the right people, making Scotland independent. We are in government. Kenny was a bit younger then, and indyref was still to happen.

    Perhaps I remember that time with rose tinted spectacles, or perhaps, just maybe, my hindsightt is spot on. We actually had a government of the people of Scotland, FOR Scotland. It had direction, it had drive. It’s goal was independence, with every action it took. In each and very way. It put the fear of god into London.

    It doesn’t feel like that now. That was back when we had a real leader, Alex Salmond. Now we have a cowardly Scottish government of wokeist cliques. Too busy chasing gender-cult brwonie points, or drafting the most draconian legislation against free speech ever seen in Scotland. Independence is the last thing on their mind, if at all. Careers aplenty in the Sturgeon brigade, support for independence is optional.

    And then we have the Salmond persecution. Instigated from the top. A great and wholly innocent man could have ended his days in jail, had it worked.

    Right now, the indy movement is sick and fed up with the SNP leadership. Mandate after mandate after mandate after freaking mandate… and so on, ad infinitum. Yet NOT ONE THING done in return to progress independence. To top it all, Nicola Sturgeon has been handed the strongest mandate of all, via two different votes. Firstly, the EU referendum vote demanded Scotland remain in the EU. It was the clearest of results. Scotland does not wish to leave the EU, not one consituency voted in favour of leaving. Yet here we are getting forcibly dragged out of the EU, wholly against our wishes and interests, by England. All under the watch of an SNP government. Nicola Strugeon simply refuses to stand up for our constitutional and democratic rights. By so doing, she betrays the very people who put her in office. A disgrace.

    Then secondly, their was the election, It was in the SNP manifesto. The commitment was clear, if Scotland is taken out of the EU against its wishes, then their wil be another indyref. So where the F**k is our referendum, Nicola????

    Westminster’s refusal of a ection 30 is nonsense, and Nicola Sturgeon knows it. She hides behind it, a pathetic excuse for inaction and cowardice in the face of an aggressive, ill-educated, overweight, lazy, racist, Scotland-hating, thug of an English prime minister. An absolute joke of a man. An utter shambles. It seems Nicola Sturgeon is the only person in Scotland, or indeed the entire UK, who takes him seriously.

    It just won’t do, and no amount of marching will fix it. Nicola Sturgeon has more than enough mandates to call indyref, but CHOOSES not to. It isn’t a priority for her or her coterie of bearded wokeists. That is why I have previously stated and will state here once again, we will NEVER get independence with her at the helm.

    So my message to the SNP leadership is simple, call indyref. You do not need another mandate, FFS. Stop the endless dithering, stop the endless spin and procrastination. We see right through it, and some of us, many of us, have just about had enough.

  164. Harry mcaye says:

    Dugbiscuit – I know some countries are, criminally or otherwise, under-reporting Covid deaths. BBC report last night had a whistle blower from Iran who got hold of leaked documents that showed 41,952 had died from Covid up to 20 July, the official figure at that point was 14,405. It was suggesting at the beginning of Iran’s outbreak that far more were dying than was being reported.

    I think a few countries are at it. Belarus is a dictatorship. Every day there are either 4, 5 or 6 deaths, never any other figure. Singapore is in the top fifty for cases, yet they would have us believe that they have had only 27 deaths.

    Spain went from 280 deaths one day to one the next, saying they had changed their methodology. Ever since then it’s been 1-5 deaths, some days none at all. Just as their tourism industry was on the brink. Qatar’s total deaths against total cases look suspiciously low too. What big event have they got coming up, where under-reporting virus deaths may be to their great benefit?

  165. george wood says:

    @Ahundrethidiot 8.47pm “Remember though that SAGE predicted 500,000 deaths in the UK if there was no lockdown – that was their justification.”

    OK lets do some arithmatic.

    Antibody testing on random people in the UK show that between 4-8% of the population have been infected by covid. Lets be generous to you and call it 8%.

    Herd immunity is at 68%, but lets be generous again and call it 64% which makes it a factor of 8 times the current infection percentage.

    Covid has killed about 50K people and so to achieve herd immunity we would expect 8 times that number to die, which gives 400K deaths in the UK. This would be realistic if no effective vaccine is found quickly enough and no lock-down measures are taken.

    This assumes that the NHS holds up and doesn’t collapse. It doesn’t include deaths that would occur from other survivable conditions that would not be treated because the NHS would be overwhelmed.

    I think the estimate at the start of the pandemic has shown to have been a good projection based on scientific experience.

  166. Tannadice Boy says:

    Robert Louis says
    You beat me on the jaundiced stakes. A good post. I feel your frustration. But I don’t want Sturgeon to call IndyRef2 she will lose it. New leadership with a credible Indy case is the way ahead.

  167. Dan says:

    The article starts:
    Symbolism matters in politics. What ostensibly can appear minor actions can have significant effect. Simply changing the names of things, whether from Londonderry to Derry or from the Scottish Executive to the Scottish Government (and swapping a UK-focused logo for a Scotland-focused one), were hugely important, signalling a new era and enthusing supporters.

    Aye, the above is true to an extent. I get that it is aspirational to call Holyrood a Government, however it is also a rod for our own back in a way.
    There are still a huge amount of Scottish folk that do not understand our Government Administration elected to Holyrood does not control all the significant powers, and only operates with what Westminster decides to devolve to us.
    If we had control of the power of Broadcasting we could produce programmes to inform the electorate, but we don’t so activists end up spending a huge amount of time going round in circles with the less politically engaged explaining the most basic stuff.
    So many of the electorate are still susceptible and reactionary to whatever the MSM churns out into their TV and radios, which is by design not particularly complimentary with regard to promoting the positive case for Scotland returning to having a fully empowered Government able to control and utilise all the powers currently reserved to Westminster.
    We have the likes of Phantom Power producing excellent stuff like the Nation series of films with Lesley Riddoch, but that sort of stuff only gets out and shared by activists either online or through screening events arranged by activists.

    Marching wise. I pretty much agree with Orlando Quarmby at 8.41pm.
    It’s getting close to The Grand Old Duke of York with marching us up hill and down glen.
    If a democratic event doesn’t occur soon our legs will be so knackered from marching we won’t be able to make to the polling stations!

    Many in the YES movement since 2014 have committed an absolutely massive amount of unpaid hours organising a myriad different ways to promote Indy. Dozens of marches with 10s of thousands of folk don’t just happen by themselves. The organisation behind the scenes for the march is one thing, the bus booking, ticket sales, marshalling by numerous different YES groups also takes significant time to administer.
    Local YES groups are often considerably better in equipped in organisational skills than the local SNP branches with regard to running events of different types.

    YES Hubs in High Streets are up and running and are only funded by donations to cover costs and volunteer’s time to keep their doors open. This isn’t sustainable in the long run and especially now with Covid in play, so elected politicians on the big bucks might want to consider an awful lot of the votes that got them into their well paid positions and gave them mandates came off the back of Indy activists and not just a few committed SNP members.

    It would be an interesting tell with regard to where our “Pro-Indy” politicians motives were at if a wee campaign was organised to assist keeping YES Hubs up and running…


  168. Robert Graham says:

    Robert Louis

    Re your pretty long previous post

    Excellent and deserves recognition you have expressed exactly how I believe most folk here are feeling right now ,

    For some unknown reason people on other Indy sites are adopting the fingers in the ears and the closed eye approach defiantly pointing out the Poll figures and having a selective memory lapse about the forthcoming fallout from the vendetta against Alex and by association Craig Murray and others, as you say it’s like watching kids squabbling while the Indy ship is bloody sinking.

    Again good post I hope others take note and stop the bickering and pissn about on here

  169. schrodingers cat says:

    Bob Mack says:
    Anyone able to update me on Mr Keatings case ‘re section 30.

    in the next 48hrs he will release data.

  170. Bob Mack says:


    Cheers. Hope for the best then.

  171. Walter Jones says:

    Bob Mack

    Bob, I would walk from here until the ends of the Earth if it meant Scotland would win her Independence.

    But there is only so much marching you can do for somebody, before you realise that that person is taking the piss out you.

    I have been marching up and down hills for Independence since 2012 and we are still no further forward. At least then there was a referendum to march for.

    But Sturgeon is offering us nothing. All we are doing is raising her profile, so she gets to sit at the head of the table for another five years.

    So until a new List Party appears and there is a a change at the top of the SNP, I will be giving the marching a miss.

    We need a vision to get us going again, and that vision will not come from the current SNP leadership.

  172. Mialuci says:

    I never look at links to anything its not that I forget, I just hate being bored by them, but I do share Bruce’s videos to am my friends on facebook, maybe 10 people at most.
    Anyway I am glad that some people have found bruce and appreciate the guy and what he does

  173. Beaker says:

    @jockmcx says:
    3 August, 2020 at 8:50 pm
    “send your shoes on a march,or your underpants!”

    You might confuse some people, it means they would have to change…

  174. bipod says:

    @george wood

    Thats the sort of bogus, simplistic arithmetic that has driven this wild overreation.

    You need to consider the other factors of this outbreak, like where has the virus has spread and been concentrated to, which has primarily been in hospitals and care homes which are full of very vulnerable people who are much more likely to die if they catch the disease. You can’t just take the current death toll and multiply it by 8.

    And as has also been pointed out many times Sweden which has had no lockdown, just some voluntary social distancing and hygiene measures has comparatively performed better than the UK, despite having a similar problem with care homes, its not undergoing any “second wave” and its daily death rate has dropped like a lead balloon, oh and it has also not mandated any mask wearing. Also Professors Neils dodgy model predicted that there would be 85000 deaths in Sweden if they did not take measures similar to the UK, it didn’t turn out like that because their predictions were way off.

    If you looked past the BBC and other fear mongering MSM outlets you would find plenty of expert dissent on the efficacy lockdown, mask wearing etc… But if that is your only source of information during this “pandemic” I can forgive you for thinking that there is full agreement in the scientific community.

    What surprises me is how blase people, like nicola, are about how much economic, mental, health, social damage they are doing to people with this endless lockdown and fear campaign.

  175. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @MorvenM –

    Apologies for talking right over your comment/link last night. It was drawn to my attention by a fellow Winger and I watched it earlier. Had never seen the guy before.



    MorvenM says:
    2 August, 2020 at 10:08 pm
    The Scottish National Lobotomy by Bonnie Prince Bob:

  176. CameronB Brodie says:

    I don’t deny the harm that is happening, but that is the cost of Tory incompetence. I’m in no position to determine the level of risk still in the environment, are you? How would you suggest Scotland best protect public health, once we’ve been FORCEFULLY removed from the EU by English Torydum?

    Call for papers for: International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare

    ….There are vibrant discussions on human rights and COVID-19 in the academe, human rights networks, and international organisations, among others, and this special issue will be a timely platform for understanding human rights issues in the context of pandemics such as:

    international law during the state of health emergencies human rights-based responses of states

    vulnerable human rights during pandemics, such as privacy rights and freedom of expression

    the importance of health communication and shaping health behaviours in the general public Governance reforms relevant to healthcare to address future pandemics….

    Protect human rights and public health in fighting COVID-19

    Government measures to combat COVID-19 have profound implications for everybody’s fundamental rights, including the right to life and to health, as mapped by a new Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) report. Government responses to stop the virus particularly affect the rights of already vulnerable or at-risk people, such as the elderly, children, people with disabilities, Roma or refugees. Respecting human rights and protecting public health is in everyone’s best interest – they have to go hand-in-hand.

    What is a human-rights based approach to health and does it matter?


    A human rights approach to health is critical to address growing global health inequalities. Three aspects of the nature of health as a right are relevant to shaping a human rights approach to health: 1) the indivisibility of civil and political rights, and socio-economic rights; 2) active agency by those vulnerable to human rights violations; and 3) the powerful normative role of human rights in establishing accountability for protections and freedoms.

    Health professionals’ practice, typically governed by ethical codes, may benefit from human rights guidelines, particularly in situations of dual loyalty where clients’ or communities’ human rights are threatened. Moreover, institutional accountability for protecting human rights is essential to avoid shifting responsibility solely onto the health professional.

    Human rights approaches can include holding states and other parties accountable, developing policies and programs consistent with human rights, and facilitating redress for victims of violations of the right to health. However, underlying all models is the need to enable active social mobilization, without which legal approaches to rights lack sustainability and power.

    Evidence from South and Southern Africa has shown that different conceptions of what is meant by human rights impact substantially on state willingness and ability to meet constitutional obligations with regard to the right to health. New approaches to health policy development, which draw on the agency of vulnerable groups, link local struggles with their global context, and explicitly incorporate rights frameworks into public health planning are needed.

    Models that move away from individualizing conflict over rights between health professionals as disempowered duty bearers and patients as frustrated rights holders, toward more mutual approaches to shared rights objectives may be possible and are being actively pursued through the development of a learning network to realize the right to health in South Africa.

  177. schrodingers cat says:

    Craig Murray@CraigMurrayOrg·
    After Independence I will happily campaign for the GRA, on grounds of personal freedom. I will campaign against the “Hate Speech Bill”, also on grounds of personal freedom.
    But can we NOT do this now.
    Let’s be laser focused on Indy.

  178. CameronB Brodie says:

    So long as the GRA proposals are binned, I’ll say no more about the problems I have with that point of view.

    The Lancet Commissions| Volume 393, ISSUE 10183, P1857-1910, May 04, 2019
    The legal determinants of health: harnessing the power of law for global health and sustainable development

  179. Kevin Kennedy says:

    Perhaps a ‘Use the mandate or resign’ protest at Holyrood might be more apt.

  180. Breeks says:

    A small point about YES marches and whether they work…

    What would it be doing to your belief in Scottish Independence if it was Unionists who were regularly parading through the streets of Scotland in numbers often well in excess of 100,000k, and being generally well received by the public? Just imagine those seas of saltires were union jacks. Still think it wouldn’t be having an effect?

    It is risky to march during a pandemic, because people will exploit it to smear us, but at the same time, there are some political frauds exploiting COVID-19 as a watertight excuse to abandon talk of Independence. Funny how COVID-19 doesn’t disrupt the onset of Brexit eh?

    Just think too, if we’d had a Scottish Government that was actually prepared to defend Scotland’s Constitutional Sovereignty these past 5 years, defeat Scotland’s Brexit as an unlawful act of colonial subjugation, action which shredded the illusion of UK Union and left it untenable,… then maybe there wouldn’t be the need for any more marches during a pandemic.

    Carpe diem. Seize the day. Because there might be a problem which prevents you seizing it tomorrow.

    Don’t get me wrong. I respect the fact it’s the medical community who want us wearing masks and avoiding mass gatherings, and I see the sense in the precautions. But if COVID-19 is here to stay, and a vaccine is to remain as elusive as a vaccine for a common cold, then we need to recognise a new reality that is here to stay, and ordinary everyday life will need to find a way of living with it.

    … And yeah… Bonnie Prince Bob gets a thumbs up from me too! Good stuff.

  181. Davie Oga says:

    Kevin Kennedy says:
    4 August, 2020 at 5:00 am
    Perhaps a ‘Use the mandate or resign’ protest at Holyrood might

    Would that be the 2016, 2017, or 2019 mandate? My personal favourite is the 2019
    vintage, with the I got your vote suckers, fuck you speech, 2 months later.

  182. Effijy says:

    If 100,000 Butchers aprons were marched through Glasgow
    By slavering knuckle Draggers I would be filled with despair
    and think that there are too many with blind resolve to overcome
    At this time.

    How can anyone be fixated with a battle in another country in 1690
    Be more important than the future of their children and country.

    Sticking with English rule is like outing a shackle around your children’s neck.

  183. Effijy says:

    I’ve received an invite to an SNP -CND Meeting.

    What is the point when Westminster demands these
    Weapons are kept here and well away from England.

    We have absolutely no control over their numbers or
    Locations and Westminster just turn a deaf ear to anything
    Scotland needs or wants.

    The only way to remove them is by achieving independence
    so no point in discussing anything other than independence.

  184. Stuart MacKay says:

    Utterly off topic.

    I have a big problem with estate owners and gamekeepers who kill and maim anything and everything that gets in the way of some rich bastards fun day of shooting grouse. So, fuck The National for publishing shit like this,

    Jane Cassidy you’re an utter disgrace to journalism. I’m surprised you can look at yourself in the mirror.

  185. Ottomanboi says:

    Even when numbers are huge, large independence demonstrations have done nothing for the Catalans, equally ‘les grandes manifs’ that took place during the heady days of the Parti Québecois, who had the backing of De Gaulle.
    There is a golden key to the independence door but walking about with flags isn’t it.
    It may have something to do with determination, political nous and leadership?

  186. AberdeenPict says:

    Stuart MacKay says:
    4 August, 2020 at 8:41 am

    Even if they caught someone red handed killing a raptor, they would just get a slap on the wrist. The animal welfare laws in Scotland and the UK are utter pish.

  187. Davie Oga says:

    Independence is the only way to get rid of the nukes and it won’t happen overnight. There have been nuclear armed submarines based in Scotland since the 1960’s. For all that CND and the like are noble causes they have achieved nothing.

    Only with independence is there the possibility of removing them.

  188. Breeks says:

    Effijy says:
    4 August, 2020 at 8:23 am

    If 100,000 Butchers aprons were marched through Glasgow
    By slavering knuckle Draggers I would be filled with despair…

    Aye. That’s my point exactly.

  189. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @Stuart Mackay/Aberdeen Pict –

    Does anyone happen to know the last time one of these landowners was prosecuted for killing raptors? Has it ever happened at all?

  190. Robert Graham says:

    Well o/t
    I have been reading Source Direct This Garavelli Hack seems to be mentioned a few times and if I remember she was given access to Nicola Sturgeon for a interview on her birthday ,

    Given this hacks close involvement in the reporting of Alex’s failed prosecution attempt and the current character assassination of Craig Murray and associated friends and colleagues I would have hoped the FM would have distanced herself from a really odious character but no she was given access and like Evans seems to be welcomed by the FM and the top management of the SNP , Looks like Assassins are the flavour of the day in Bute house,

    The more I read about the top management of the SNP the more I am loosing any respect and trust in them who exactly are they or what are they working for we know it’s not indyref 2 but what else is being hidden, and what lurks behind the painted smile Nicola ?
    The Holyrood Inquiry will throw up some pretty interesting and unpleasant embarrassing questions this management structure will do it’s best to cover their arses ,
    When something stinks there is usually a reason ,no smoke without fire as the saying goes

  191. Iain More says:

    Well at least one SNP Elected rep has mentioned Independence. I can count the numbers of them uttering the word Indy in the last three years on one hand. Not good enough.

  192. susan says:

    All fine and dandy @Craig Murray, let’s leave these issues until after independence. I take that was addressed to the scotgov? These things are being pushed NOW. So NOW is the time to fight against them. Independence might not be worth having if human females are second class citizens, existing purely as validation and support humans.

  193. Robert Graham says:

    Oneliner thanks for posting this clip
    I don’t know why but I always thought the narrator was that clown with the long hair who was the National Trust for Scotlands head of promoting England’s interests to the dumb Scots .
    Christ must get out more and lay off the medication this is worrying Ha Ha

  194. Dan says:

    @Ian Brotherhood

    Here’s a couple of raptor twitter accounts you could put that question to.

    In other wildlife news from a couple of weeks back… Can someone gie Lizzy a biro…


  195. Gullane No 4 says:

    A march during a virus pandemic….are you serious.

    There are much better ways of showing strength in numbers without putting lives at risk.

    Look for iconic local landmarks with lots of open space.

    Use a bit of imagination like the Bridge comment.
    Arthurs seat is an obvious venue, St Andrews Beach, Caledonian canal etc. A huge line [s] of socially distancing supporters would be pretty impressive.

  196. Dan says:

    Travelling Tabby updates their stats.

    Meanwhile 2 mins of Trump informing us on the “proper” reading of Covid stats…

  197. Breeks says:

    AberdeenPict says:
    4 August, 2020 at 9:00 am

    Stuart MacKay says:
    4 August, 2020 at 8:41 am

    Even if they caught someone red handed killing a raptor…

    The thing that troubles me is the level of cruelty and persecution we know about is the stark possibility that it’s just the tip of the iceberg.

    This is the type of persecution not so long ago which wiped out indigenous species, and they call it management. Eagles, Buzzards, Peregrins, Goshawks, Ravens, Crows, even Pigeons… Foxes, Stoats, weasels, otters… Nevermind the numbers, look at the sizes of Scottish Salmon caught in Scottish rivers 50-100 years ago compared to now. Anglers from that era would throw a modern salmon back as an immature catch.

    Have things improved? A little. When I was a kid, seeing a brown bird bigger than a crow was due cause to stop the car and get the binoculars out. These days Buzzards are a lot more common, so ‘something’ has changed. I see more herons, badgers and otters too, but curiously, I see much, much fewer peewits and curlews, which I think must be down to field drainage.

    But when you see so many apex predators like our fantastic eagles still being destroyed, you wonder to what extent these shooting estates are just window dressing their darker activities, and it’s butchery as normal away from those areas the public wander. How many buzzards have tags tracking their movements? How many old ruins securely locked up “to keep the vandals out” might have a trap or poisoned carcass pegged out which nobody will ever know about?

    So they have an App to count mountain hair? Well, what’s to say they don’t just tap in sightings at random? Aye there’s millions of them, carry on the carnage…

    I have it on good authority that the shooting is all a con. Vital to rural economies? Bullshit. None of it makes a viable profit. They’re not doing it for the money, but the priviledged lifestyle of simply being landed gentry.

    It’s the whole culture needs changing and the desertification of Scotland’s wilderness not just stopped reversed.

  198. Colin Alexander says:

    Any word from ANY of the professional politicians that ANY of them will seek a plebiscite mandate for indy?

    If none of them will, I feel no inclination to vote for ANY of them.

    Scottish Govt my airse: Devolution is British Imperial government under a Saltire.

    Colonial administrator Sturgeon running British Imperialism from her slave trader’s mansion.

    I want a liberator, not a British Empire jailer waving a Saltire.

    As for encouraging a huge march during a pandemic: What he is encouraging is hugely irresponsible. Put bluntly: MacAskill is a bampot.

    What he is doing is passing the buck, cos he and the rest of the SNP have done hee-haw for indy for almost 6 VERY lucrative years for SNP politicians while Scotland’s ordinary people have endured so much suffering but worked so hard to keep indy hopes alive.

  199. Stuart MacKay says:

    @Ian Brotherhood

    Raptor Persecution UK run by the indomitable Ruth Tingay is the goto place to find information on this issue. I had a look through the recent blog posts but did not find anything specific. Let’s just say it’s been a while since there’s been a conviction.

    I did find this post which has a list at the bottom that gives all the persecution incidents in the Cairngorms National Park:

    The last successful prosecution was 2003. Since then there have been 72 incidents. 72!. This is just for the park alone. Imagine the number that never get discovered and imagine the number if you replicate that for all of the other grouse shooting areas in Scotland.

    The entire grouse shooting industry is founded on crime. It simply could not exist without large scale killing of bird of prey, hares, stoats, foxes. It’s antiquated Victorian activity for the benefit of a tiny few that carries an enormous cost.

    It does not need reformed. It does not need to be regulated or licenced. It needs to be banned outright.

  200. Bob Mack says:

    @Stuart MacKay,

    I live in a rural area, and on four occasions I have found dead Buzzards on my side of the river which have been victim to poisoned baits.

    These baits were placed across the river from the shooting grounds and not on their own property. I have taken local keepers to task,but they just don’t listen or deny everything. These baits could kill anything.dogs etc.

  201. Stuart MacKay says:


    Here’s a taste of the scale of this problem:

    Of 131 young eagles tracked, as many as 41 (31%) have disappeared (presumably died) under suspicious circumstances significantly connected with contemporaneous records of illegal persecution.

    This is just for the iconic Golden Eagle. Think of the Buzzards, Kestrels, Ravens, Goshawks, Sparrowhawks, Merlins, Peregrines, Hen Harriers, Short-eared Owls that don’t get so much attention.

    It’s not just grouse shooting. Pheasant shooting has the same problem.

  202. Mike d says:

    Newburghgowfer 6.30pm. Yes 100.000 scots marching for indy in London couldn’t be ignored media wise, as would happen if 500.000 marched in Edinburgh or Glasgow.

  203. Breeks says:

    Stuart MacKay says:
    4 August, 2020 at 10:12 am

    … Let’s just say it’s been a while since there’s been a conviction.

    There have neen a couple of keepers prosecuted, from memory one was fined £5k when caught redhanded with a pole trap, and another got community service for a stink pit with carcasses of buzzards and owls in it, but he wangled his way out of the punishment.

    The latter was in the Scottish Borders, so what else would you expect? The land of crooks, where legal justice, professional competence, and personal integrity counts for nothing.

    I think it was 200 hours community service, (but that number might be wrong) but hours actually worked were 0. I could tell you more, but rest I know is only rumour…and somebody might lose their job. (Don’t get me wrong. He’d fkg deserve to lose his job, just maybe not on the strength of a rumour).

    As ever, evidence is the trick. But when will it ever pay to invest tens of thousands on securing good evidence when the courts will just issue the culprit a Get out of Jail Free card? It’s just a slap in the face for wildlife protection officers more than any punishment for wrong doers.

    Justice for the wildlife? I think not.

  204. AberdeenPict says:

    Dan says:
    4 August, 2020 at 9:22 am
    @Ian Brotherhood

    Here’s a couple of raptor twitter accounts you could put that question to.

    Thanks for the links Dan and the comments/links from Breeks and Stuart.

  205. CameronB Brodie says:

    Playing fast and loose with our epistemic responsibilities (see support for genderwoowoo), is a characteristic of bourgeoisie liberalism, and is the root of post-truth politics. It supports a politics of the make believe, and brought about the election of Trump and BoJo, as well as bringing us Brexit. It is such ‘imaginative’ political practice that is destroying democracy and western culture.

  206. Daisy Walker says:

    @ Breeks 9.39

    ‘Vital for rural economies’

    I suspect many are run at a financial loss, deliberately for tax offsetting purposes. Hence the lobbying to prevent a land tax.

    Re curlews etc, moder tractors, with closed cabs and sat nav, etc, mean there is a change in plowing methods, the tractor driver in the ’70’s would see the nest as he approached it, stop, mark it with a cane and plow round it, or else climb down and shift the nest over to the plowed area and mark it with a stick.

    These days they just steam roller over it.

  207. Dan says:


    Lobbying ya say…
    I’ll just tack these on from a couple of weeks back for those that may have missed them.

  208. A says:

    I would just like to point out that the “UK-focused logo” formally used by the Scottish Executive (now Scottish Government) is the Royal Arms in Scotland; it’s not a UK-wide symbol it’s the symbol that the Scottish Government is wielding the executive power of the Crown in Scotland.

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