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Wings Over Scotland

Paint one nation with a rainbow

Posted on October 04, 2012 by

There’s something odd about this series of pictures from the last eight years of Labour Party conferences, but we can’t quite put our finger on it. Can anyone help out?









“My late father, as some of you know, wouldn’t agree with many of the things I stand for. He would’ve loved the idea of “Red Ed.” But he would have been a little bit disappointed that it isn’t true.” (Ed Miliband, 3rd October 2012)

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    1. 05 10 12 09:51

      Wan Neshun | laidbackviews

    68 to “Paint one nation with a rainbow”

    1. Embradon says:

      The workers’ flag is palest pink
      Since Labour washed it in the sink

    2. MajorBloodnok says:

      You can have any colour you like mate, as long as it’s blue.

    3. Holebender says:

      Labour – the Blue Meanies!

    4. John White says:

      It seems a bit like the end of Animal Farm……….

    5. Doug Daniel says:

      In regards to the 2007 photo – I love the idea of an incumbent, who has been in office for 10 years, describing itself as “the future for Britain”.

      Could they not just be honest and say “Neoliberalism: you’ll never escape”?

      I wonder if he’ll come out dressed in a Bullingdon Club uniform next year?

    6. blunttrauma says:

      I notice all politicians are wearing purple ties now, Labour, Lib-Dem and Tories.

    7. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “It seems a bit like the end of Animal Farm…”

    8. pa_broon says:

      Is it JAZZ HANDS!

      Or the long lost theory that if you speak with your hands held wide apart, people are more likely to believe you?

    9. TheeForsakenOne says:

      I find the last three amusing. Red, White then Blue. Deliberate perhaps?

    10. scottish_skier says:

      Canny believe I was joking about this a year ago at the 2011 Labour conference when they first reduced the red in earnest and started going for more blues and whites too. Little did I know that was just the start.

      Guess it was only a matter of time though.

      @Blunttrauma. There’s some truth to that. 

    11. Seasick Dave says:

      They are all a bunch of C U Next Tuesdays.

    12. Rich says:

      Saying that New Left stalwart Ralph Miliband might “be a little disappointed” in his sons trajectories is like saying that the Labour Party is “a little confused” over the relation of the poor to the rich.

    13. YesYesYes says:

      Have you started a trend?
      The people’s flag is deepest blue
      Now ‘universal’ means, ‘no’ fer you’
      We’re with the Tories all the way
      To stuff the nats and save the day
      Now raise our standard to the sewer
      Time to wage war on Scotland’s poor
      Though nats’ll flinch and socialists sneer
      We hold our Tory values dear

    14. Morag says:

      Pistachio green was 1994, I believe.

      The year John Smith died. The year Tony Blair took over.

    15. An Duine Gruamach says:

      That 2011 is pink for sure.  

      The People’s Flag is deepest pink
      It’s not as red as you may think
      The banksters will all stand and cheer
      We sing “The Red Flag” once a year. 

    16. heraldnomore says:

      Aye, but, Johann’s got her seat at the table noo, and a wee jar for her wallies and an interpreter for the hard of thinking.  She can swap tales of the skool yard with Red Blue Ed and tell him how well she’s doing  (Sorry that was a Davidson word), progressing, putting them nasties in their place with her well founded attacks and socialist principles.  One Nation efter a’, ‘n ‘at, big man.

    17. thomas says:

      hello , have been following wings for quite a while now and would just like tae say hello to you all.
      thoroughly enjoy all the articles and comments


    18. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      Do NONE of you follow our Twitter feed?


    19. Morag says:

      Even if I had the slightest in terest in Twitter, no.  Certainly not at work.

    20. thomas says:

      I am on an english forum at the minute arguing with a so called scot who is a staunch brit nat new labour blairite.
      would appreciate any help with these following questions;

      1. Is Salmond’s negotiating position going to be by population (the 7% that I’m told is actually 8.4%)?2. Are the SNP going to use legislation or tax incentives to lure companies away from the globally powerful LSE?3. Are the SNP going to ask for transfer of ownership of things like railways from network rail to a new executive?4. Are the SNP gong to compel companies who are based in Scotland but who do majority of their business in England to remain?5. Are the SNP going to renege on the Scottish banks or will they opt to take on 7% of the debt or all of the debt to retain HBOS and RBS etc?6. As England is the number one trading partner for Scotland is there going to be any switch in focus in order to attract new business from the EU nations?7. If there is going to be a switch in focus what methods are going to be used to encourage a change from the UK to Scotland? 8. What long term industries are the SNP going to try and nuture as the oil will shortly run out?9. As Barrosso said last month all NEW states will have to apply in the usual manor to join the EU, what is the plan for the 10 years that application process takes?10. With the reduced voting right any new membership of the EU would obviously entail (as votes MEP allocation is decided on national population, which in theis case id of the UK as a whole) what plans are the SNP going to introduce to ensure Scotland has a powerful voice within the Parliament, especially as by population it will be the smallest of the EU nations?11. What are the SNP going to do to aleviate the problems in supply now that Scotland will not have the collective purchasing power of the entire UK to drive down the cost of well everything from guns to drugs?12. How is Scotland going to defend itself and it’s territorial waters especially the oil fields? the UK has 7 type 45 destroyers by population that means Scotland will end up with less than one being handed over. The same is true of the military at 7% that buys 36 tanks, 12 jets, and about 11,000 soldiers, so what is going to be done to make up the shortfall?I could go on, there are another perhaps 200 questions that HAVE to be answerred by your lot, and they really do have to be answerred as without that knowledge then how can anyone make an informed decision. Take note this is not a criticism of Scotland but fiscal reality, you have to show the working out and the longer you don’t the weaker your position becomes. You must surely realize this in your heart of hearts? 

      many thanks


    21. scottish_skier says:

      Hi Thomas. Welcome aboard.


      Was just thinking to myself folks. We should keep an eye on how pale the blue in ed’s jack flag thing turns over the next wee while. The more white it becomes could be a handy barometer.

    22. Juteman says:

      What’s twitter?

    23. Iain says:

      Hi Thomas,

      I see a few of the usual turds in that list.

      Firstly the most important point is the referendum is about self-determination. Trying to pin people down on future policy of a government that does not yet exist is a diversion. These things can be aired but it shall be down to any government we choose. Equally many of these questions can be reversed and applied to the UK state and again there are no definitive answers.

      If you want to dig into detail you could do worse than to look at the list of myths that are available on Newsnet Scotland.


    24. tartanfever says:

      Hi Thomas,

      Long list you’ve published there, all of it absolute rubbish.

      Personally, when someone starts posting about the banks and ‘will Scotland do a runner from their share of the debt ?’ it’s probably not worth engaging with them. How many times I’ve seem Alex Salmond on tv saying that of course, Scotland will take her share of the debt. You’ve found yourself a troll and you’ll be bashing away at the keyboard all night and still not one bit of difference to them.

      In the meantime, a good way to check out some info would be to go to Newsnet and look through the article ‘A-Z of unionist myths’. Here’s the link: 

    25. Morag says:

      I read as far as the statement that Scotland would be the smallest of the EU nations, and gave up.  He needs to get his facts right for a start.

    26. Holebender says:

      Who knew Scotland was smaller than Malta?

    27. Morag says:

      Or Luxembourg.  And that’s just fishing for tiddlers.  I mean, Ireland?

      Not that that was the first or only factual inaccuracy.

    28. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

      They should  be raising the white flag as they’ve surrendered to the tories.

    29. Morag says:

      Oh look, there’s a handy wiki page.

      Quick count gives eight members with populations under 5 million, and another three between 5 and 6 million.

    30. Holebender says:

      Ah… but if Scotland is only (apparently) 7% of the UK population that must make our population about 4.2 million? Unless the UK’s population is getting close to 75 million?

    31. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      I concur with the others, Thomas: if this person is so stupid they haven’t even managed to accurately look up Scotland’s population, you’re just going to be wasting your breath trying to get them to understand anything more complicated.

    32. Morag says:

      It looks as if this person is copy/pasting a list of questions supplied to him from elsewhere.  It might be an interesting exercise to find out where he got it from.  It has a number of significant inaccuracies, and makes many more absolutely unwarranted assumptions.

    33. Jeannie says:

      Just read Nicola Sturgeon’s speech.  Wow!
      Welcome on board, Thomas

    34. MajorBloodnok says:

      Just read Nicola Sturgeon’s speech too. 

      And it’s the young person from a working class family who dreams of going to university but knows that, no matter how supportive and encouraging her parents are, she would never be able to if she had to pay tuition fees.
      And since Johann Lamont likes to make these things personal, let me tell her this: that one is about me because it is exactly the position I – and I am sure many others in this chamber – was in.
      We are beneficiaries of free education – we have no right to pull up the ladder of opportunity and deprive today’s young people of what we were able to take for granted.

      I could feel my eyes pricking when I read this.  This is so bloody right, I can’t express how angry I am at Scottish Labour for trying to kick the ladder away behind them like fucking Tories.

    35. Jeannie says:

      @Thomas – if the person you’re communicating with is called Michael McKeown of West Midlands, just ignore him.

    36. thomas says:

      thanks very very much for all your replies. Basically its a forum ive been going on for a while now , since day one me and this character have been at it hammer and tongs.
      I can accept any point of view within reason , but cannot stand a so called scot who puts his country down in the way this vile creature does.
      he believes we are not a people , have no distinct history or culture and tries to impress that his views are in some way reflective of the working class of scotland , an outright blairite through and through from what he posts.
      apparently he is living in birmingham and is an hmrc employee , and claims to be originally from the isles.
      thanks once again for all your replies  and good to talk to so many like minded people , talking scotland onward and upward.

    37. Morag says:

      Isn’t Birmingham in the West Midlands…?

    38. tartanfever says:


      He’s an HMRC employee ! (Ok not having a dig at the majority of HMRC employees, just in case anyone works for them) but maybe you should ask your pal if he is one of the 2,000 HMRC employees earning over £58k a year that were allowed to set themselves up as companies and therefore only pay 20% corporation tax. 

    39. Juteman says:

      Politics isn’t enjoyable for me anymore. The blatant, breathtaking lies from the likes of Lamont is becoming too much for me. The BBC is driving me insane. The alternative reality the MSM is pushing out is beyond a joke.
       The anger it is causing can’t be healthy for a man in his ’50’s like myself.
      The darkened room beckons.
      I feel like switching off till 2014.

    40. YesYesYes says:

      From one independence supporter in his fifties to another, this one’s for you Juteman:

    41. Erchie says:


      Of course, if he works for HMRC the Civil Service Code precludes him from commenting on political matters on a public forum 

      Especially if he is identifying his Dept

    42. Jeannie says:

      Don’t despair – Just read BBC Scotlandshire.  Your good mood will come back.

    43. Don McC says:

      Thomas, as others have pointed out, the cretin you’re “debating” with has been hand-fed those questions because they’re all from the Unionist list of usual suspects.

      One aspect I particularly like is the whole “Is Scotland a new state or not”?  If Scotland is a new state, then yes, an argument can be made that we would need to apply for membership of the EU.  However, AFAIK, being a new state would mean we would have no obligations left over from being part of the UK (which is one of the arguments for why we’d need to reapply to the EU).  Which would mean, amongst other things, that there is no “share” of national debt for us to take since the obligations would remain with rUK.  So a lot of the questions Mr Cretin posed are mutually exclusive, proving he’s merely regurgitating them and hasn’t thought about (and doesn’t care) about the answers.


    44. Juteman says:

      Cheers folks.
      Sometimes you fear for your sanity when someone says the earth is flat! 🙂

    45. Wallace Bruce says:

      All we need now to complete this shift to the centreground is for next weeksconference to have a red background.

    46. velofello says:

      Nicola Sturgeon’s speech is awesome, and I too benefitted from free education.

      Lamont’s strategy is disgusting but also inept. She centres on the micro-economic policies of the Scottish government and questions the merits and affordability of universal benefits. But what about UK macro-economics? She lamely accepts cuts in the Scottish budget, monies paid out by Scotland to Westminster and then returned in part by Westminster, shouldn’t she be questioning why Scotland – in earnings surplus – must receive substantially less than she contributes and suffer budgets cuts from Westminster? It can be argued that each according to their needs and so Westminster has to take an element of Scotland’s surplus and share it with other needy parts of the UK. Is that what is termed universality, a system she is so much against for the micro-economics of Scotland?

    47. scottish_skier says:


      “I too benefitted from free education” 

      Me too. Helped me get to where I am which is doing comfortably enough, paying a large dollup of income tax and a very large dollup of business tax on the company colleagues and I started which now employs a good few people, who of course are also paying tax. My uni fees are more than covered and I’m happy to help out others with the extra I’m putting in, but in 13 years time when my daughter might want to go to uni too, would be nice if society said ‘aye, no bother, of course’ as a wee thanks for my contribution over the years.

      Makes you feel part of something. A society if you like. 

    48. JBS says:

      Nicola Sturgeon says:

      “Well, we think differently.”

      Too right we do. Go on, stick it to them. Watch them cringe. Watch them run home greeting to their mammies.

      Great stuff. Vote Yes for an independent Scotland in 2014.

    49. Bill C says:

      Every picture tells a story!

      Hi Thomas, welcome to the best site in these isles of Britain. As other have said your ‘pal’ sounds like a certain Michael somebody from the Midlands, I wouldn’t waste your time on him. Talking of time wasters and Labour politicians who specialise in gutter politics. How about this from a certain Councillor Terry Kelly: Jimmy Reid was “seduced” by the “capitalist state” (Jock Morrison’s blog on statues in George Square Herald 3rd October).
      It would appear that Labour have declared war and a no holds barred policy is now in force. How else can we explain Lamont’s personal attacks, Wilson’s accusation that Iain Macwhirter is a nationalist and Kelly’s defamation of one of Scotland’s greatest sons?
      Oh of course I forgot, it’s probably just sheer desperation from Labour, they know they are losing the argument day by day. Let us enjoy.

    50. Arbroath 1320 says:

      And since Johann Lamont likes to make these things personal, let me tell her this: that one is about me because it is exactly the position I – and I am sure many others in this chamber – was in.
      We are beneficiaries of free education – we have no right to pull up the ladder of opportunity and deprive today’s young people of what we were able to take for granted.

      Who paid for Lamont’s education?
      Oops that’s right NO ONE her education was FREE!

    51. tartanfever says:

      Interesting. BBC Scotland running a piece by Robert Black saying we can’t afford ‘universal benefits”

      On this matter, Douglas Fraser has opened his blog for comments for those who want to reminisce on better days when Scots licence fee payers were afforded the same service as the rest of the UK. 

    52. Morag says:

      Robert Black the retired law professor?
      Robert Black the mass murderer?
      How many are there of this guy?

    53. Richie says:


      Lamont was educated?!
      In what? Frying fish? 

    54. Jeannie says:

      Just watching Scotland Tonight.  Some very rude and ill-mannered behaviour from Ruth Davidson.  She just does herself no favours at all.  Jackie Baillie smirking as usual.  Dishonesty oozes from every pore.

    55. Richie says:


      re Robert Black

      “* Free prescription and eye tests costing £150m each year.”
      Maybe I’ve had too much whisky (it is (nearly) the weekend) or I’m just thick but I’ve been reading figures of around £57m. Where is the £150m coming from?

      “* The cost of travel concessions rising to £500m in the next decade.”
      What? Each year or for 10 years? I can’t believe that’s the true cost. Is it?

      “* Personal and nursing costs rising by 15% each year.” 
      Why would they rise by 15% each year?

       I don’t really know much aboot this stuff, so maybe the guy’s right and I’m a twat for questioning him but it sounds like bollocks to me.

      Maybe it’s  this guy “Robert Black, a pseudonym used by science fiction and fantasy author Robert Holdstock”

    56. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      £57m is just prescriptions. £100m seems a lot for eye tests.

    57. MajorBloodnok says:

      “Paint one nation with a rainbow”
      I’m slow on the uptake but it’s quite a ‘Zippy’ title, now I think about it.  Glad you didn’t ‘Bungle’ it. 😉

    58. Jeannie says:

      Yes, I don’t get the eye tests figure either.  I had a free eye test this year and the last time must have been around 10 years ago.  At that time, I think it was £10.00 for an eye test.  At that price, you’d have to have 10 million eye tests per year to get that figure.  Since there’s only half that in the population, some people must be having an awful lot of eye tests.

    59. Jeannie says:

      @Major Bloodnok
      I always hated that Bungle.  Somebody should’ve shot him.

    60. Bill C says:

      Watched Scotland Tonight: Ruth Davidson’s rude, false and prolonged laughter was typical of the arrogance of many Tories, an embarrassing performance.  
      Also watched Newsnicht where Raymond Buchanan was interviewing the retired Auditor General for Scotland, Robert Black.
      Raymond was pleased to learn that Robert felt that we could not afford many of the universal benefits currently available under the current SNP government. Unfortunately Raymond and Robert forgot to discuss the Coalition cuts and the fact that £230 billion in oil revenues will be flowing into Westminster coffers over the next 15 years. Funny that?      

    61. velofello says:

      Well, lets just pick off one benefit for adjustment if the costs are rising so dramatically:

      Free bus passes: Operate a quota system? Say X number of travel points per mile per annum. So if a person chooses to take a bus trip from Glasgow to say Inverness they are eating substantially into their quota. Or, restrict free bus travel to shorter journeys?


    62. Bill C says:

      Velofellow, with all due respect, you are falling for the unionist argument, free bus passes would be a drop in the ocean in an independent energy rich Scotland. I’ll wager they are not having this debate in Norway!

    63. Arbroath 1320 says:

      Lamont was educated?!
      In what? Frying fish? 
      Well I ASSUME Lamont was educated Ritchie. After all there is a rumour, an EXTREMELY nasty rumour admittedly, that she was once a teacher! If this rumour is true then all I can say is “GAWD help the kids in her classroom!” 😀

    64. douglas clark says:

      I think the following is factually correct:
      Even in England there are large categories of people who get free prescriptions and eye tests. So, it is not comparing like with like to suggest that the total cost of these services would disappear. Indeed, if the boom in the numbers of people over 60 is taken into account – who get both these things for free, even in England -is true, then their costs will rise steeply also. There are a lot of other exempt groups too, including kids and those on various income support packages.

      On that basis the headline cost of the free service in Scotland is a red herring.

      So Lamonts figures, which ‘cost’ you and I £157 million a year would. even under a Tory Government in England not disappear. Given that 90% of prescriptions in England are free – see here:

      the whole debate that she has opened applies to 10% of prescriptions and presumeably eye tests as well, given that the exemption criteria is broadly similar between the two. So the ‘saving’ from doing away with universal provision falls to about £16 million a year. Which is about £3 per head. As I understand it, it is by no means the case that everyone who is entitled to these benefits claims them, so the true costs may be even lower still.
      Is this her big idea? Making a mountain out of a molehill.

    65. velofello says:

      Bill C:
       i agree that independence would be a gamechanger financially for Scotland and you do not need a degree in economics to understand that, just show some interest in macro-economics, and don’t swallow the blatant lies of many pro-unionists on the subject.
      My quota idea is in response to the present tied-to- Westminster situation and the handwringing of Lamont, and Mr Black comments on Newsnight yesterday. Notice i offered no comment, and so the status quo on tuition fees and medical care.
      i did note that Black’s comments on Newsnight described rising cost figures only and didn’t offer any compensating rising figures on income, nor did he mention inflation. 
      Costs and income are like Ying and Yang, constantly shifting and counterbalancing. 

    66. Silverytay says:

      I am what on the surface should be classed as a natural labour voter .
      My old man was a brickie who if he did not work , he did not get paid and if he was not paid we had to do without . Xmas day was a normal working day for him and to ensure we never had to do without at xmas time he would come home from work, have his tea and then go and work in the post office sorting office overnight to make ends meet .
      When I was born I needed a major op that i was not expected to live through . i was in and out of hospital until I was in my mid 20s . At 58 I still need regular medication .
      Things only improved for my old man and myself due to the actions of the labour party .
      This was a labour party that had principles , that went out of its way to ensure the the lives of normal working men and women , the sick , the old and the young were improved .
      Sadly this labour party no longer survives .
      The one we have to day has betrayed all its principles of the past and is only out for what is in it for themselves . They no longer care about the poor , the sick or the old , they are now out thatchering thatcher  in their creed of man mind thyself .
      I could never put into print what I really think of todays labour party as I would be unable to control my rage .
      Rev sorry for going O.T.T .
      p.s Thank goodness for the S.N.P that still believes in social justice and the community . 

    67. Richie says:

      I don’t think you’re ott Silvertay. You should send that one to Lamont.

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