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Passing the buck

Posted on May 20, 2020 by

With commendable swiftness, we’ve received a reply to our letter of earlier this week to the Cabinet Secretary for Justice. You can read it in full below (click to enlarge).

Sadly, however, it’s precisely the sort of evasion we expected, and it is not acceptable.

The primary content of the reply is “Ooh, nothing to do with me, guv, you want that Lord Advocate fella”, which is an unsurprising but still disappointing response from one of the Scottish Government’s most senior officers to questions about the conduct of that government which encompassed more than mere legal technicalities.

It also rather clashes with the Scottish Government’s own website, which clearly states that the Scottish Cabinet is the primary decision-making body (in which Mr Yousaf gets top billing after the First Minister and her Deputy), with Ministers, including the Lord Advocate, in a subordinate supporting role.

The Cabinet Secretary for Justice is clearly listed as having ultimate responsibility for police, courts, sentencing and justice system and criminal law procedure.

We must deduce that sacking the Lord Advocate would therefore be effectively within the Cabinet Secretary’s powers, if such a thing should ever be deemed as necessary because, for example, the Lord Advocate had not carried out his duties properly and impartially. We make no such allegation.

(The Lord Advocate, like the Permanent Secretary, is officially appointed by the Queen on the recommendation of the First Minister subject to the approval of the Scottish Parliament. But it’s quite inconceivable that they could remain in post if those were withdrawn, and as such the de facto position is that the Cabinet has the power.)

The reply also worrying misrepresented our letter.

We had of course NOT made any demand that the Lord Advocate take any particular actions regarding any prosecutions, nor that Mr Yousaf should order him to do so. We had sought in the first instance a simple clarification as to whether COPFS considered a specific piece of information published in several newspapers to amount to identification of a specific individual, so that as journalists we would know whether or not it was lawful to quote that paragraph in our coverage of the wider issue. It is part of COPFS’s duties to inform the public and media regarding such issues in order to help prevent contempt of court being committed.

In any event, however, we’d actually sent our letter not only to Humza Yousaf’s email address, but also to the address given on the same website for the Lord Advocate.

We had also already written separately, on 7 May, to the COPFS complaints address named in the response. We still await a reply to that letter two weeks later.

So even if it wasn’t the case that the Cabinet Secretary is ultimately responsible for and senior to the Lord Advocate, we’d already asked the Lord Advocate as well anyway, so “Go and ask the Lord Advocate” is not a satisfactory response.

This is particularly true since the Lord Advocate quite properly recused himself from his responsibility for the Alex Salmond trial, as it represented an obvious conflict of interest in his dual role as law official and Scottish Government adviser, as discussed rather disturbingly and in detail by Kenny MacAskill last month in The Scotsman.

Our questions are legitimate and reasonable and we have directed them to the proper people. Yet another fobbing-off will not do. We have conveyed that position to the Directorate For Justice, and we’ll continue to keep readers informed of developments.

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  1. 20 05 20 18:56

    Passing the buck | speymouth

178 to “Passing the buck”

  1. Muscleguy says:

    Looks likely to me that you will be fobbed off and passed from pilllar to post until you either give up and go away or are forced to take recourse to the courts to get them to respond.

    Perhaps asking permission for a private prosecution of the relevant media and persons might get them to concentrate minds as that would make the media take up and notice.

    I think the SNP are doubling down on their persecution of Alex Salmond and his supporters in advance of his dish best served ice cold.

    In my new Wings whack-a-mole twitter account I will add my support for AS to my stated support for WingsOverScotland.

    I’m still waiting for the woke and TRA’s in the SNP youth wing to notice me, or maybe they are intimidated by my stated scientific status. We shall see.

  2. Muscleguy says:

    BTW Rev I never had any desire or intention to EVER get a twitter account until your travails. I could not sit by and do nothing.

    After putting in all the stuff to set up my account and clicking OK or whatever to do it I got a message saying ‘something has gone wrong’. Effortst to search for my account returned ‘this account does not exist’. I was discouraged thinking perhaps twitter had doubled down on Wings sites. But week later I tried to log in and found it working. Two of my initial tweets got retweeted!

    Oh and I must thank you, your troubles have a silver lining for me. @Jeggit saw me engage someone over Covid conspiracy theories and invited me on his podcast. It is now live if anyone is interested in my supposed views on the subject.

  3. Grouse Beater says:

    Hamza Yousaf? What does he know about Scots law and litigation?

  4. Ian Hart says:

    I feel as if I’m resurrecting Cilla Black:

    Surprise surprise


    What a joke.

  5. Shug says:

    Send it to Jackson or Patrick or Leonard or the other weee chap
    They might have the balls to ask at first ministers questions

  6. terence callachan says:

    I think the questions should first go to the chief executive of the COPFS
    Then if not satisfied the Lord Advocates office
    Then if not satisfied
    The ombudsman

  7. Corrado Mella says:

    What is interesting – and telling – is that the poor sod tasked with your reply is mentioning the 1998 UK Parliament Act that established the Holyrood Parliament and Scottish Executive.

    Subservience writ large.

    This lot has no intention to shift from their cushy jobs and plump salaries.

    Hell mend them.

  8. Bob Mack says:

    Was it the Lord Advocate or the Scottish Government who decided to release Al Magrahi ?I

    He was denied parole as far as I remember and his appeal to the courts failed twice.

    How can the Government overturn that?

  9. callmedave says:

    Ach! It’s a little defensive straight bat prod back to the bowler.

    Nothing to see here ‘FO’

    Show them your googly next. 🙂

  10. Marie Clark says:

    Oh good grief, a bad case of pass the soap Pontius.

  11. twathater says:

    Stu are you sure you sent it to the right oooffice cause that looks like a reply frae the brutish bullshitting c*nts ,it has their format fuck off and don’t annoy us

    I complained about my boiler care from a well known but despised Scottish provider and had the same diversionary tactics from the ombudsman (various depts ) 2 years later I TOLD THEM TO FUCK OFF

  12. Bob Mack says:

    Justice when selectively applied is no justice at all.

    I am certain the Justice Minister would be fully entitled to ask the Prosecution services why their approach is divergent in the cases you highlighted.

  13. SilverDarling says:

    No answers yet.

    However, every department will be aware of it soon. It may mean going through hoops but if all their ridiculous obstacles are negotiated someone has to answer directly sometime. The Lord Advocate being cc’d at every turn will find its target.

    I think some of the Opposition would love to run with it but are probably too feart it might open a can of worms for them later down the line.

    As the young people say you have all the receipts.

  14. Astonished says:

    As a SNP member this reply is utterly unacceptable. I will hold Mr Yousaf responsible if this is swept under any carpet.

  15. Muscleguy says:

    Well said, would it be possible under party rules to raise this at branch level to try and up the pressure on Yousaf?

  16. Julia Gibb says:

    Who does run Scotland? Who shapes Scotland? It isn’t a good look so far.

  17. J Galt says:

    This is why the word “Government” in the phrase Scottish “Government” should always be in inverted commas!

  18. New SNP in the making same as labour, arrogance exudes.

  19. Merkin Scot says:

    Step by step.

  20. Sinky says:

    Ffs bbc plugging another anonymous person contacts “her MP”Ian Murray who has no locus over health issues rather than her GP as they flog old Nike smears.

    Meanwhile in his actual job at Westminster union jacket attacks Scottish Government at Scottish Questions rather than holding the Tory UK gov to account

  21. liz says:

    Humza is a dead loss, I’m getting more disillusioned by the SNP daily.

    It has been an interesting day on twitter. James Dornan’s appalling comment about Alex S, saying if people knew he had a couple of minor encounters with some adult women, his career would be finished.
    Thankfully he got torn a new one in the comments.

    And he also stated that he was not elected to get indy but to represent all the constituents in Cathcart. NS said similar about Scotland.
    I do believe this is the consensus amongst the SNP, the high moral ground, even thoughthe unionists hate them.

    It seems that the SNP are now saying outwardly that indy is not their priority.
    They wouldn’t be in power if it hadn’t been for pro indy people voting.
    It kind of agrees with your poll the other day.
    So where do we go now?
    I’m starting to despair

  22. Sharny Dubs says:

    I’m retired now but during my last few years of “senior management” (yeah yeah haha) I noticed how increasingly those who were promoted to positions of responsibility had largely achieved such not for their abilities or working knowledge, but for their ability to navigate the ever increasing hoops put there by woke philosophy. Of course there is no such thing as a real philosophy, only a series of variants and vagaries that will allow the opportunity for “undesirables” to be easily passed over for promotion.

    I fear that the SNP management have mostly selected staff in this way who are largely incompetent. Yousaf being a prim example.

    God help us.

  23. Astonished says:

    Muscleguy @6.31pm

    I honestly don’t know but I (and I am sure others ) will sure as hell try.

  24. Bob Costello says:

    Interesting what he says about the dangers of politicians being involved in instructing the court system.

  25. robbo says:

    Funny you mention Ian Murray, Sinky 6.50 pm . While he breaks rules attending Wesmonster (not req’d) his constituents I believe ? breaks rules too. Good show ya wee runt.

  26. robert graham says:

    As expected every News channel will now be required to show the English at play , on the beach , in the parks having a great time , fancy a ice cream , a pint no problem guv fill yer boots it’s back to normal don’t yah know ,
    it’s a pity all you useless Jocks can’t join in , it’s that Sturgeon you know it’s all her fault , it’s ok big Boris will look out for you just sign on the dotted line ,

    Aye and sell yer fkn soul trust anything said by these lying hunts at your peril these fkrs can’t ever be trusted , not today , not tonight , not ever . Full stop .

  27. robbo says:

    See above man!

  28. Ron Maclean says:

    The Cabinet Secretary for Justice is also responsible for human rights.

  29. Colin Alexander says:

    In my time I’ve written to: Alex Salmond, Nicola Sturgeon, Shona Robinson,and Michael Matheson.

    I’ve NEVER had a proper answer to any letter.

    With Salmond, Sturgeon and Matheson I never received any reply from them.

    I wrote to Salmond and Sturgeon as last resorts because of the lack of satisfactory responses.

  30. Colin Alexander says:

    It is notable that Alex Salmond, went straight to court for redress against the Scot Govt: he did not try to go through the SPSO ombudsman;

    the ( Labour created) SPSO that every SNP government has been happy to have in place for the poor plebs that cannot afford to hire advocates to represent them in the Court of Session.

  31. Breeks says:

    This is how sophistry works.

    It seeks to muddy the waters, bamboozle those who seek clarity, when it’s a clarity which might embarrass the establishment, even when, indeed, especially when, the establishment thoroughly deserves to be embarrassed, or exposed as corrupt.

    When you pin these people down so they cannot wriggle out of your question, they’ll capitulate when they have nowhere left to hide, but it won’t avail you at all, because they’ll just tell you they have nothing to add to the answer you’ve already been given, and repeat that response indefinitely.

    I’ve threatened SNP Ministers with breaching the Ministerial Code in their evasive refusal to answer diligent questions, succinctly and politely put before them, concerning issues which were existential to the welfare of my business. Fool that I was, I thought such a prospect of embarrassment would motivate them to reply to my grievance and address the ramifications, but I underestimated the thickness of their reptilian hides. The only reason I didn’t lodge a complaint, is that seeing SNP Ministers sacked in disgrace was not I thought, conducive to the Independent Scotland I wanted to see delivered, but also, my faith in “Scottish” Justice and SNP integrity had already collapsed completely.

    If history repeats Rev Stu, five or six years from now, you can expect a curt letter from Fergus Ewing telling you absolutely nothing of any consequence, except his assertion that the conduct of the COFPS has been exemplary, when you know in your heart, having seen it work as a first hand witness, that it is thoroughly rotten and dysfunctional… Keep a sick bucket handy.

    The saddest thing about the years the SNP have squandered in power, is that I knew they were feckless, gutless charlatans from way back, well before 2014. I have felt cursed like Cassandra. Blessed on the one hand with foresight to see what lies ahead, but cursed on the other, by having nobody listen or believe you.

    Maybe you’ll have better luck than me Rev Stu, but my advice to you is to suffer no illusions that the people you are dealing with respect honesty, integrity, or the sanctity of justice. It is my firm conviction they do not. This failure makes them fully complicit in the corruption, and they deserve no mercy.

    They are literally those proverbial “good” people, doing nothing, who allow evil to flourish.

    This is how Scotland is “governed”. SNP people, doing nothing, who allow the Union to exist.

  32. Ron Maclean says:

    @liz 7:08pm

    ‘So where do we go now?’

    First to the ‘The Constitution of the Scottish National Party’ (Version 1.05 – February 2020)

    The Party

    2. Aims
    The aims of the party are –
    (a) Independence for Scotland; that is the restoration of Scottish national sovereignty …
    (b) the furtherance of all Scottish interests. …’

  33. Colin Alexander says:

    The SPSO relationship with the Scot Govt can be compared to the situation with the COPFS:

    They are both supposed to be totally independent of the Scot Govt. Yet, are Scot Govt political appointees.

    As Dennis Canavan and others have long asked about the SPSO:

    Who watches the watchdogs?

    The same can be said about the COPFS.

  34. Cath says:

    Didn’t Kenny Mcaskil question the possible conflicts of the Lord advocates role recently?

  35. Julia Gibb says:

    Ron MacLean @ 7:37pm

    ???? exactly!

  36. Ron Maclean says:

    There is a document ‘COPFS Standards and Conduct’. Two key values ‘Being Professional’ and ‘Showing Respect’.

    Stoker linked it at 2:43am/20May ‘A bit of spot colour”

  37. Newburghgowfer says:

    For me the crunch was the AS case. I had serious doubts with the actions of some of the Mps when Alec joined RT and they were so jealous saying he was colluding with the Russians.
    Then we had 3 twats having a go at Indy supporters on Birdshit and then they parachuted a dubious character into a Mp seat from the EU. Wish his lights were turned off fulltime.
    48mps and they achieve nothing in WM but moan that the Unionists won’t play fair !! Wtf do they expect with a wishy washy party we have that jump to their tune when they want.
    Hung out to dry by the media and dancing to the yoons tune means that this lot will never get us Indy but will just become like the shite party Labour were in Scotland

  38. PacMan says:

    Sharny Dubs says: 20 May, 2020 at 7:13 pm

    I’m retired now but during my last few years of “senior management” (yeah yeah haha) I noticed how increasingly those who were promoted to positions of responsibility had largely achieved such not for their abilities or working knowledge, but for their ability to navigate the ever increasing hoops put there by woke philosophy. Of course there is no such thing as a real philosophy, only a series of variants and vagaries that will allow the opportunity for “undesirables” to be easily passed over for promotion.

    This ‘woke philosophy’ what you mention is rife both in the public and private sector.

    The intentions are good. There have been too many people in the past who do anything to progress and that includes undermining, bullying and border line intimidation particularly those from ethnic minorities, gay people and woman. This philosophy was supposed to include a more diverse and inclusive atmosphere where these disruptive individuals would not be able to cause harm in the workplace.

    The theory doesn’t mirror reality. These disruptive individuals which I had spoken of know to use the language of this new inclusive enviornment and bend it to their own uses. They have turned into the Wokes that are perpetually offended on other peoples behalf. Now they have hijacked this movement that had perfectly good intentions and used it for their own advancement. Instead of bullying people due to their race, religion, sexuality of skin colour, they turn their ire to those who don’t agree with the new system. In essence, they know how to the play the new game and turn it to their advantage.

    The only way I can see of defeating this woke carry on is to point out that there seems to be far too many white, middle class, middle age males in this movement and that they should be making way for the groups they are feeling offended for.

    I fear that the SNP management have mostly selected staff in this way who are largely incompetent. Yousaf being a prim example.

    God help us.

    I don’t think Yousaf is part of this Woke movement. He is just a classic bureaucratic jobs-worth who uses deflection and shifts blame elsewhere so he can do as little as possible and not be blamed for anything so when the next promotion comes, he has the most spotless record.

  39. PacMan says:

    robert graham says: 20 May, 2020 at 7:17 pm

    As expected every News channel will now be required to show the English at play , on the beach , in the parks having a great time , fancy a ice cream , a pint no problem guv fill yer boots it’s back to normal don’t yah know ,
    it’s a pity all you useless Jocks can’t join in , it’s that Sturgeon you know it’s all her fault , it’s ok big Boris will look out for you just sign on the dotted line ,

    Aye and sell yer fkn soul trust anything said by these lying hunts at your peril these fkrs can’t ever be trusted , not today , not tonight , not ever . Full stop .

    I’ve noticed that as well as the nonsense about Scotland should have went into lock down sooner. The same goes for that nonsense about Nicola Sturgeon ‘enjoying’ having a different lock down strategy.

    This fake news is easily stopped in it’s tracks by pointing out who pays for the Furlough and considering how much the Tories are going on about how much it is damaging the economy, who will pay for the Furlough in future when there are future waves of outbreaks and further lock downs required due to the current one being lifted too early?

  40. robbo says:

    If Portobello beach and promenade are anything to go by today ,

    One big fecker looking for some suckers!

  41. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Now that ‘the’ dreaded subject has been raised again, please see this, which many will have missed, from the previous thread:

    ‘Guybrush Threepwood says:

    20 May, 2020 at 6:18 pm

    Lockdowns do not save lives (unless you remain in lockdown until everyone in your country is vaccinated or the virus magically disappears). Lockdowns merely delay everyone being infected at the same time and thus enabling your health service to manage the influx of patients.

    A lot of people seem to be under the impression that lockdowns are some kind of magical cure. Countries such as New Zealand might be rather smug with their current statistics but this virus is here to stay. New Zealand and their ilk have merely delayed the inevitable. Unless they plan to stay in lockdown and keep their border shut for the next 100 years, they will have an increase in deaths as soon as they return to some form of normality.

    Professor Johan Gisecke states that in around 1 year from now, most countries will have similar death rates, regardless of lockdown measures. Never have lockdowns been any part of pandemic counter-measure, even for deadly viruses.

    While it is a personal tragedy for those who have lost loved ones, Covid-19 is a moderately mild virus in historical terms.

    Hong Kong Flu killed up to 4 million people between 1968 and 1969 (no hysteria or draconian house imprisonment of the healthy) and the black death wiped out half of the population of Europe in the 14th century.

    The UK lockdown was the brain-child of controversial Professor Neil Fergus on (who used to work for Gisecke) and his dubious Imperial College paper, which was never peer reviewed. Ferguson has a horrific track record for being wrong and overly pessimistic.

    In 2005, he predicted that 200 million people would die from bird flu, in the end just 282 people died. He also said that Sweden would suffer up to 40,000 deaths by the beginning of May for not going into lockdown (it was a little over 3,000).

    The government keeps talking about ‘the science’ as if science is an homogenised block who are all in agreement with each other. The truth is that many scientists and epidemiologists think lockdown measures and closing borders is the wrong approach. Indeed, even Jason Leitch stated that lockdowns merely delay the inevitable, before becoming a cheerleader of Ferguson’s controversial paper.

    Gisecke has a more accurate track record than Ferguson and his advice was pure, ice cold logic:

    1. Wash your hands regularly.
    2. Shield the vulnerable.
    3. Practice social distancing when possible (in most cases it is not possible or practical).
    4. Get on with your life.

    This pandemic has ushered in a highly immature attitude towards death. In 2018, 1.5 million died from tuberculosis and around 600,000 die from the flu each year. There are many viruses which we have learned to live with. Covid-19 is the latest.

    While it is sad what is going on inside care homes, I am more worried about what these cruel lockdown measures are doing to younger people – their education, mental health and future career prospects. It is always the young who suffer the most. We are teaching children to fear touching other people and that is beyond cruel.

    The IMF predict a global depression, larger than the depression of the 1930s, which killed 7 million people. Oxfam predict that up to 500,000 million face starvation due to horrific lockdown measures around the world.

    “Those who would give up essential
    liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

  42. Kenny says:

    Interestingly, I once wrote to the Justice Minister when it was Kenny McAskill and the matter was, ironically, rather similar to things linked to the whole Salmond case, on which Mr McAskill has commentated. However, Mr McAskill simply brushed them aside and seemed very uninterested at reports of corruption and incompetence of government officials.

    Now, anyone reading this will say: of course he was uninterested, what importance could there possibly be in the matters of some uninteresting citizen of Scotland?

    But the thing is: all the corruption starts somewhere. It starts at the bottom and it runs like a thread through our whole system. Coming into contact it at any level, an official knows he/she has to cover up or pass the buck (or stand outside the system and let the whole system unravel).

    In many ways, our independent legal system corresponds to the “Jackie Bird” image of Scotland as a hopeless, useless region. It always has, for hundreds of years. The same probably now goes for our political system.

    That is why independence is pointless unless things are fundamentally changed. The answer? We need direct democracy, so you can actually pinhole the useless corrupt official. Incidentally, justice also needs to be done in a “direct democracy” way. Some societies have successfully tried it (you have to dig to find the examples, for some reason they are rarely used in books).

    Has anyone noticed that all the best members of the whole independence movement are not in the SNP? They just need to all get together and bring out their own White Paper. Like the Scottish Covenant Association, which gathered two million signatures in support of devolution shortly after WWII.

  43. Garrion says:

    “Scottish” Labour.

    Scottish “Government”.

    Pig to man, man to pig, as George would say.

  44. Muscleguy says:

    Thanks for your reply. Remember for evil to flourish requires that good people do nothing.

  45. PacMan says:

    Ian Brotherhood says: @ 20 May, 2020 at 8:38 pm

    No matter how many times repeated otherwise, most people know the lockdown was only needed to stop health services from being overwhelmed.

    If you are unhappy with the lockdown, you should be arguing with the idiots that are similar to those shown in the Portobello today who is prolonging the lock down to act sensibly so we can all go to at least a sense of normality as quickly as possible.

  46. Graeme says:

    I think the problem here is the SNP are untouchable, there’s no opposition at least not as far as independence is concerned, they’re an electoral machine in Scotland much like Labour once were,
    I don’t think it’s that they don’t believe in Independence anymore it’s just that they’ve found something they like a bit better, big salaries, expense accounts, ministerial cars, restaurants, wine bars, London high society and the rest, it’s a conflict of interest and there can only be one winner and sadly it’s not independence,
    There are some notable exceptions but that’s exactly what they are “exceptions” the rest are just human, victims of their own weakness and greed.
    They’ve shafted us and they know it but they can’t help themselves so they’ll look for ways to justify their betrayal so they can sleep at night like lets wait to see the outcome of Brexit, lets wait till Westminster finds a conscience and grants us a S30 , lets deal with this virus first and on it will go and on it will go.
    The really sad thing is the only way to hit back is at the ballot box but we have no one else to vote for.
    Sadly I don’t have an answer it’s a puzzle wrapped up in a riddle inside an enigma but I think we have to come to terms with the fact the SNP in it’s current form will not win us Independence, they’ve just got it too good

  47. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @PacMan (8.50) –

    I didn’t write that comment.

    As it happens, I do agree with it, but that’s not the point – messenger-shooting is becoming more frequent in this place.

  48. Robbo no timestamp on those photos?

  49. Republicofscotland says:

    They’ve kicked the ball into your court to see what you’ll do next, the problem is what effective course of action can you take? If nothing, then what? And more to the point they probably know this.

    The only real power you have here is exposing their lack of action on your blog, which has a good following so yeah, that’s a course of action they can’t brush off with a half hearted reply.

  50. Rm says:

    When you start getting university graduates into politics, they haven’t really got any side they try and spread the doctrine that they’ve been taught, wanting Independence comes from the heart it’s deep rooted, the older generation know that’s where most of your patriots are it’s not a money thing, finance rules everything, every single thing the real patriots find that hard to understand because it wasn’t money for us, it’s something deeper from the heart.

  51. jfngw says:

    @ian brotherhood

    NZ are not in lockdown, the pubs are open with some restrictions. He starts of with a lie that can be disproved in seconds.

  52. PacMan says:

    Ian Brotherhood says: 20 May, 2020 at 8:56 pm

    @PacMan (8.50) –

    I didn’t write that comment.

    As it happens, I do agree with it, but that’s not the point – messenger-shooting is becoming more frequent in this place.

    Most people are single and do the right thing for themselves, their family, their friends, their fellow neighbours and members of their community by following the rules. However, there are those who think they know better and think they are smarter than others and flout them. They aren’t better or smarter. They are only making it even harder for themselves and those around them. That is the reason why authoritarian measures are sometimes required.

    Rather than just going over the same old arguments that doesn’t solve anything, why not offer something constructive and have discussions about the best way to get out of this bad situation?

  53. No Ian common sense is more prevalent Nobody has said lockdown will kill this virus it is designed to protect the NHS from collapsing under extreme pressure so that more people are given the best of care atm. If it is allowed to rip then the whole of society collapses then where are those that are left vulnerable to the political class (establishments)and their feindish endevours.

  54. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Three consecutive comments addressed to me *after* I pointed out that I didn’t write it.

    Anyone want to try responding to the author?

  55. PacMan says:

    Ian Brotherhood says: 20 May, 2020 at 9:15 pm

    Three consecutive comments addressed to me *after* I pointed out that I didn’t write it.

    Anyone want to try responding to the author?

    If you don’t like replies that don’t agree with the position of another you are agreeing with, why are you re-posting it?

    Wouldn’t it be more positive to stop going over the same old arguments and try to be more constructive about the situation that all of us don’t want, don’t like and would love for it to change?

  56. Xaracen says:

    “500,000 million face starvation” = 500Billion souls. That’s enormously more than the entire population of the planet!

  57. deerhill says:

    Shug says:
    20 May, 2020 at 5:41 pm

    “Send it to Jackson or Patrick or Leonard or the other wee chap
    They might have the balls to ask at first ministers questions”

    Although, to quote a phrase, “I wouldn’t hold my breath!”

  58. jfngw says:

    @ian brotherhood

    Just to add, I am no admirer of the Neil Ferguson model. I thought I posted this in an earlier thread but in fact I had just sent it to a friend some time ago (sorry about the long link I don’t know how to do the short thing).

    I know you didn’t write it but as you reposted it I thought you wanted comments, sorry if I misinterpreted your intent.

  59. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @PacMan –

    ‘If you don’t like replies that don’t agree with the position of another you are agreeing with, why are you re-posting it?’

    That doesn’t make sense.

    How would I know whether or not I agreed with replies to the comment unless I did re-post it?

  60. Zen Broon says:

    Well that all went from ‘interesting’ to ‘meh’ surprisingly quickly.

  61. PacMan says:

    Ian Brotherhood says:20 May, 2020 at 9:26 pm

    This is your comment:

    Ian Brotherhood says: 20 May, 2020 at 8:56 pm

    @PacMan (8.50) –

    I didn’t write that comment.

    As it happens, I do agree with it, but that’s not the point – messenger-shooting is becoming more frequent in this place.

    You are posting a comment that you are agreeing with. It is also one that you know will provoke a strong and opposite reaction. Therefore, you know what the replies will be. It then follows that what the reaction would be when you repost that comment so should you cry about ‘killing the messenger’?

  62. Beaker says:

    Did Kenny McAskil not try to get rid of corroboration? We’d have had a justice system based on “Aye ye did” “Naw I didnae”. Although I think that is pretty standard in a polis interview.

    Could be worse, if Blunkett had had his way we’d all have biometric ID cards, the supply probably outsourced to Serco, who have unbelievably shared the details of 300 of the testers. Obviously a technical issue caused by the unprecedented COVID-19 computer virus…make sure your laptops and PCs are masked, gloved and observing social distancing…

  63. robbo says:

    cynicalHighlander says:
    20 May, 2020 at 8:59 pm
    Robbo no timestamp on those photos?

    No, but it was for sure today unless STV, BBC,C4 are running with shots from last year as it’s all over the news.

    While that wee runt Murray was in Westmonster, his constituents were ambling about the beach and promenade . I believe the polis did move them on, but see how many in Edinburgh get infected over next week or two will be interesting.

  64. This is like a sketch from Yes Minister,

    where the elected minister(Humza)gets manipulated and bypassed by the unelected civil service,

    basically the author of the reply, Kevin Philpotts, has told Humza to but out and let the civil service handle this,

    probably gave Humza a shiny mirror to gaze into.

  65. velofello says:

    The Common People Crowdfunding the Defence of Persons against the State.

    What a headline! That this recourse is necessary is astonishing.Never would I have believed this of Scotland and of the judiciary if I’d been foretold.

    Well there are many many more of us to fund as needed, than there is a budget for them sitting in the Crown Office. All power to you Rev.

  66. PacMan says:

    Scot Finlayson says: 20 May, 2020 at 9:37 pm

    This is like a sketch from Yes Minister,

    where the elected minister(Humza)gets manipulated and bypassed by the unelected civil service,

    basically the author of the reply, Kevin Philpotts, has told Humza to but out and let the civil service handle this,

    probably gave Humza a shiny mirror to gaze into.

    In the series, Hacker’s career benefits from being manipulated and bypassed by the unelected civil service.

    While the series is satire, I’m sure everybody knows from their working career, how this broadly mirrors the internal bureaucracies of the companies they have been in.

  67. Asklair says:

    Keep digging.

  68. Gregor says:

    Public has every right to know WHY rotten, court contemptuous, UK mainstream gutter press appears to be exempt from rule of law, while the rotten judicial system/Police Scotland exclusively targets, with maximum State force, those who are supportive of Salmond’s defense/highly publicly valued figures within the Scottish independence movement.

    Rule of law, State transparency and public accountability are fundamental to a healthy functioning society and should always be available, accessible, and applicable to all.

    ‘THE PAIN’

  69. Colin Alexander says:

    Cath said:

    “Didn’t Kenny MacAskill question the possible conflicts of the Lord advocates role recently?”

    He’s no the only yin.

    As you can see here:

    “The Cabinet is the main decision-making body of the Scottish Government…The Lord Advocate may also attend in his or her role as the Scottish Government’s principal legal adviser”.

    So, the head of the COPFS is closely involved with the politicians of the Scottish Govt. Yet, is supposed to be independent of the politicians.

  70. defo says:

    Let’s hope Laura Paton is one of the few, it seems, good guys.

    How about, shout at me if you’ve done it already, compiling a list of who’s been informed, and their reaction.

    Spell it out for the hard of thinking.

    Did the lord advocate initiate Eck’s show trial?
    Ian Livingston?

  71. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @PacMan –

    Okay, you’re right – I could have predicted there would be a reaction to the comment.

    You asked why I don’t do something positive and suggest something we can do.

    Well, the positive advice was contained in the comment I re-posted:

    1. Wash your hands regularly.
    2. Shield the vulnerable.
    3. Practice social distancing when possible (in most cases it is not possible or practical).
    4. Get on with your life.

    Perhaps that isn’t the type of positivity you had in mind but it is a move forward and one that many would be happy to go along with.

    The inconsistency of messages from different people, sometimes inside the same governments, has become intolerable.

    One small example – are all the hospitals right now in total lockdown?

    You would imagine so, right?

    Well, they’re not.

    This evening, family friends went to (a ‘big’ Scottish hospital) to visit their teenaged child who is due to undergo a relatively minor operation tomorrow. They weren’t allowed to stay long but they met the youngster in the reception area, chatted for 15-20 mins. No security, no mandatory masks or anything else. And the place was, according to the parent, ‘stone-dead’.

    That’s an honest report of what I was told just half an hour ago.

  72. PacMan says:

    Ian Brotherhood says: 20 May, 2020 at 10:01 pm

    Have you considered that the lock down and it’s extension may be due to wanting to get infrastructure for the Test, trace, isolate, support strategy up and running before the inevitable second outbreak/wave that will be caused by the types of idiots in Portobello today?

    While it is becoming increasingly obvious that the SNP Scottish Government isn’t interested in constitutional issues, it is as plain as the nose on your face that they are interested in keeping power and their current position with the Coronavirus is to keep that hold on power so in that aspect, they are more than interested in the best interests of the Scottish people and therefore, doing the right thing.

  73. SilverDarling says:

    I get that Humza wants to emphasize the separation of powers and the judiciary is distinct and entirely free of interference from the legislative and executive.

    In reality though isn’t that what is being questioned here? Is the judiciary in Scotland free from political interference?

  74. Gfaetheblock says:

    More eradication of the memory of Salmond, or preparing for the reintroduction of fees as the country’s tertiary education section gets ready to implode?

    Or both?

  75. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @PacMan –

    If, as you suggest, the SG is currently doing what it thinks ‘looks best’ purely for electoral purposes then we are in deeper shit than most realise.

    As for what happened at Portobello, I have no idea because I haven’t seen any images, but I live close to a relatively unpopular beach in Ayrshire and I can tell you, hand on heart, that I’ve never seen the area surrounding the beach so busy, ever, in the past 20 years. People are not having barbeques and suchlike, they’re staying mobile, but every other person has a dog, and the dogs all look knackered. (Short-term dog rental may well have become ‘a thing’ hereabouts.)


  76. cynicalHighlander says:

    @ Ian Brotherhood

    This evening, family friends went to (a ‘big’ Scottish hospital) to visit their teenaged child who is due to undergo a relatively minor operation tomorrow. They weren’t allowed to stay long but they met the youngster in the reception area, chatted for 15-20 mins. No security, no mandatory masks or anything else. And the place was, according to the parent, ‘stone-dead’.

    I was told by a minister that there was a messiah coming to save us all. Get real please you are better than that.

  77. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @cynicalHighlander –

    Sorry, I don’t ‘get’ that.

    Are you saying that I’m lying, or suggesting that the family friend is?

  78. jfngw says:

    Their is no way to ‘shield the vulnerable’ except to lock them away from any outside human contact for months perhaps years. If this is how we want to end our days then fine.

    Reducing the current instances of the virus then trying to keep on top of any outbreaks looks like a better choice to me. If we had done this at the beginning we could have been like NZ with the pubs open. No mass events though, can’t see these happening anywhere soon.

  79. Josef Ó Luain says:

    Being 100% in-the-right doesn’t really matter in this country, wherein the elasticated nature of the rules and regulations makes pinning-down anything in a definitive manner quite impossible. A shoddy, shadowy Kafkaesque parody it is, indeed.

  80. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @jfngw –

    After PacMan’s reference to the place, just had a swatch at the Twitter images of Portobello beach today. Looks like ‘mass events’ are back on, authorised or not.

  81. cynicalHighlander says:

    @Ian Brotherhood

    I am not accusing you of lying but spreading misinformation more than like Hospitals are allowing NO visitors same as care homes. My local medic centre have a max of 3 patients at anyone time and hand washing and masks supplied by them are mandatory so if you think a much busier healthcare centre are more blaise about their own safety you really have conspirioatus and need an injection of common sense.

  82. jfngw says:

    @ian brotherhood

    I’m referring to organised events like football crowds and marches, you can’t in the end control the masses if they decide to do what they want.

    In you believe I think the lockdown is good thing, I don’t, it’s a necessary thing because the wrong choices were made at the beginning. Are we over reacting, possibly, but if we remove the lockdown and are wrong then the outcome will be a disaster for many.

    I remember seeing a tweet at the beginning of lockdown (I didn’t store it) that predicted the deaths would be around 65,000 with the choices the UK gov made, this was at the time they were stating 20,000 would be a good result. The 65K looks to be more realistic now.

  83. Capella says:

    @ Ian Brotherhood – the purpose of a lockdown, if enacted early in the pandemic e.g. early March, is to isolate infected carriers of the virus. With no available host, the virus dies out. But for that to work we should have had a track, test and isolate programme.

    People are still flying into UK airports with no checks, no quarantine and no tests. They then spread the virus wherever they go. The UK government is considering quarantining air arrivals from the end of May. This is not a serious lockdown.

    Countries which did seriously lockdown, such as New Zealand and Vietnam, are able to resume normal activities because the virus is under control.

    The Tory government in Westminster is a shambles and the UK has the highest death rates in Europe. But they are not concerned because it is the old, the sick, the disabled, the poor and the BAME who are dying. The economically irrelevant who will not be missed. That removes a lot of surplus to requirement people from the benefit budget. As Dominic Cummings said, “If a few pensioners die – too bad”.

  84. jfngw says:

    @ian brotherhood

    If you believe (why can I not spot my spelling mistakes until after I’ve posted something)!

  85. robbo says:

    Ah, bollocks to this man. Think i’ll move to the Faroe Islands.

    Look what we could have is a good point.

    Might be a bit blustery, but no different from the Falklands I can tell you, much nicer than than baron dump.

  86. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @cynicalHighlander –

    You chose a good name for yourself!

    What I reported above is 100% accurate – I’ve just double-checked, and got a few more details…

    They stood right outside the main entrance. (They also had the family dog with them.) The lad came down to meet them, they stayed apart from each other. No-one chinned them. They chatted for 15-20 minutes, gave him some stuff he’d asked for. No handwashing/wiping was involved at any point.

    That was it.

    What do you find so unbelievable about that?

  87. CameronB Brodie says:

    Brexitania is detached from the natural law, so the potential for justice and the impartial administration of the law, is a dead parrot. Thanks very much English Torydum.

    The Principle of Transparency in Administrative Law

  88. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @cynicalHighlander –

    I should fess up that my original said ‘in the reception area’ and that is not accurate – they were right outside the reception area, at the main entrance. So, technically, they were ‘outdoors’. I should’ve made that clear.

  89. jfngw says:

    What I’ve noticed is that the MSM rather than investigate why the UK gov are lying about death levels in English care homes they are piling onto the Scotgov for every nitpicking detail till they find some inaccuracy.

    Also they are very concerned about the track & trace at a Nike conference with less than 100 people but are totally unconcerned about any track and trace involving over 250K people at Cheltenham. Where there no Scots at the Cheltenham event, I find that hard to believe.

    They are trying to destroy the reputation of the Scotgov as its level of support is high, WM is not happy looking so useless.

  90. PacMan says:

    Ian Brotherhood says:20 May, 2020 at 10:32 pm

    @PacMan –

    If, as you suggest, the SG is currently doing what it thinks ‘looks best’ purely for electoral purposes then we are in deeper shit than most realise.

    As for what happened at Portobello, I have no idea because I haven’t seen any images, but I live close to a relatively unpopular beach in Ayrshire and I can tell you, hand on heart, that I’ve never seen the area surrounding the beach so busy, ever, in the past 20 years. People are not having barbeques and suchlike, they’re staying mobile, but every other person has a dog, and the dogs all look knackered. (Short-term dog rental may well have become ‘a thing’ hereabouts.)


    What happens if the Crosshouse if overwhelmed in a couple of weeks time with the old and infirm from all ends of the shire due to these individuals breaking the lock-down?

    I don’t know and you don’t know if that will happen but why take the chance? It isn’t hard to observe the rules for a couple of more weeks so that we keep the coronavirus under control and stop the old folk being prisoners in their own home because they are afraid to go over the door?

  91. jfngw says:

    @ian brotherhood

    Can I ask you a question as I’m not totally sure what your position is. I’m assuming you are against the lockdown but what exactly is the alternative you want to happen?

  92. cynicalHighlander says:

    @Ian Brotherhood

    Well I don’t believe that for one instance. Bollocks is a better description. If you are a patient going outside is a no no more especially under present circumstances, you are being told garbage and if you believe that oh well!

  93. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @cynicalHighlander –

    First time I’ve been called a liar in here.


  94. Doug Buchannan says:

    When making a complaint about an organisation, always best to contact the correct department.

    Firing off letters full of accusations to the man in charge, will result in your being told to make the complaint via the correct channels.

    To then throw a strop because the man in charge did not get back to you in person immediately, and you received a letter outlining the correct process, who would have guessed?

  95. Robert Louis says:

    I see Heriott Watt ‘University’ has decided to remove Alex Salmond’s stone from their campus, despite students voting to keep it. What next burning books???

    Might I suggest we find somewhere much more prominent to have it placed, such as right out side the entrance to the Scots Parliament, so everybody can see it, and the promise to ensure their are no tuition fees in Scotland.

    I kind of think a prominent location, within the capital, is more appropriate for a quote from the great man, and former First Minister Alex Salmond, than the front lawn of a parochial, small-minded, wee, seond rate ‘university’ like Heriot Watt, somewhere near the bypass.

    Just a reminder, Heriott Watt seems to have little respect for human rights, taking as it does, the shilling of both Dubai and Malaysia, which have appalling human rights records.

    Maybe the morality police of HW should take a look closer to the chums their very own university keeps.

  96. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @PacMan –

    Good question.

    I don’t know what will happen.

    But a hefty % of the folk I saw out this morning *were* elderly and/or infirm, were being helped, were in buggies etc. Don’t get me wrong – it was nowhere near as ‘busy’ as those pictures of Portobello, but it was relatively busy, for here. Definitely a lot of folk who are not locals, or mibbe locals heading for the shore for the first time in years.

    And I wasn’t out for long because I had the dog and he doesn’t like being near other dogs after a couple of nasty attacks in recent years – actually had to retreat because it was just too likely that other dogs would get close and he’d just ‘freeze’, as he does these days.

    My honest feeling is that folk have had enough and are taking what they reckon to be acceptable risks. We’ll find out soon enough if they were right or not.

  97. jfngw says:

    It seems the anonymous person that claimed he was not contact traced at the Nike conference contacted Ian Murray as his first port of call. A bit weird that someone that wanted everybody at the conference jigsaw identified wants to remain anonymous. Of course we only have Ian Murray’s word for it he/she exists, but his word is dependable as the PM’s in my book.

  98. robbo says:

    New outbreak in China- here we bloody go!

  99. robbo says:

    On CNN

  100. robert graham says:

    A Question for all you smart arses on here if your still up .

    Anyone able to find any reference to Alex on the SNP website ?

    I find the excuse given about the removal of the stone placed by Alex at Herriot Watt university is an act of total petty cowardice , The last remnant of Alex’s pledge regarding Tuition Fees is being removed a fkn disgracfull act by it would appear actors within the SNP rather than heal wounds the vendetta continues, what’s the saying ” We didn’t leave the party the party left us ”

    This has a prominent place on the BBC Scotland website surprise surprise who exactly is calling the shots right now because ? Because the membership will take control and the poison will be removed , let’s see who wins this little tussle .

  101. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @jfngw –

    We’ve crossed swords of late and I don’t want you to think I’m taking the proverbial here but I am not against ‘the lockdown’ per se. FWIW, my family has observed it to the letter – in fact, we told the weans to break off with the boy/girlfriends two days *before* the official lockdown started.

    But look at what’s happened since. It’s a fuckin mess.

    I’m just wary of any narrative which is adopted wholeheartedly by the msm, and this one has been, big-time. And the complete blackout of any dissenting voices is just a big giant flashing red light.

    The only alternative I can offer to ‘lockdown’ is ‘no lockdown’ because it never ever was a real lockdown to begin with.

    One last thing – I can’t imagine why anyone here, if they are regulars at all, like cynicalHighlander, would think that I’m choosing to spend a Wednesday night getting pelters when I could be in my bed watching old Laurel & Hardy films.

    Why would I make up some story about people I know and love, who are worried out of their minds, being ‘allowed’ to see their son outside a hospital on the eve of an operation (aye, okay, it’s not a major one but they’re *all* a worry when it’s yer own wean).

    We’re losing our minds over this stuff. It has to stop.

    And with that, I’m off to the scratcher.


  102. CameronB Brodie says:

    According to the Lancet, global health regulations rule.

    International Health Regulations

  103. CameronB Brodie says:

    Of course, Brexit encoumpases an ideological rejection of the “precautionary principle” and international law, including Global Health Law.

    Normative Foundations of Global Health Law

  104. jfngw says:

    @ian brotherhood

    I don’t think I’ve ever called you a liar.

    I can use a bit of hyperbole that can be a bit abrasive at times but it does draw out what people really think sometimes, not always.

  105. CameronB Brodie says:

    If the Scottish government is allowed to destroy a legal respect for biology in Scots law, there is no sustainable future for democracy in Scotland. Or hope for constitutional justice.

    The International Health Regulations: The Governing Framework for Global Health Security

  106. Iain More says:

    Aye – He/She did it!

  107. Willie says:

    Talk about jigsaw identification Rev.

    It’s a fucking an impenetrable jig saw trying to find out who is actually responsible for the justice system. Not the Minister it would seem. Nothing to do with him.

    I wonder if this also applies to the Police. Who is responsible for them. Bet you fifty pence that again it’s not our Justice Minister. I mean what is he responsible for or is he just another sloppy shouldered politician with forked tongue.

    Certainly seems so because in an unrelated matter a friend wrote to him about concerns that he had about local government corruption. And guess what, he didn’t respond, but someone from his correspondence unit did. And can you guess what they said. Yes, you got it. Nothing to do with him.

    Now I don’t know about other folks but whilst the current coterie of Scottish Government Ministers come across like the monkeys of hear no, speak no and see no, someone has to be in charge and pulling the strings. Jeepers it seems that they even hold cabinet meetings without minutes so that there is no record.

    But of course this is how corrupt governments operate and make no mistake this government is crossing lines. Time they were gone to be replaced by others in whom we can place our trust.

  108. Joe says:

    To the critical thinkers, the concerned and the interested – this is a must watch. I strongly suspect there is such activity here also. Seriously, take the time. It will alert you and start to put things in perspective. Its gone beyond Britain v Scotland for now.

  109. CameronB Brodie says:

    As a learned scholar of law was once overheard commenting on utter self-centered ignorance, “bollocks to that”.

    The global health law trilogy: towards a safer, healthier,
    and fairer world

  110. crazycat says:

    An alternative “angle” (pun intended) on the scenes from Portobello beach:

  111. CameronB Brodie says:

    That links with cognitive neuroscience, which tells us men and women perceive the world in subtly different ways. So in order to include biological women in the democratic process, a legal respect for biology is essential. Simples. 😉

    From Unconscious Inference to the Beholder’s Share: Predictive Perception and Human Experience

  112. CameronB Brodie says:

    If the Scottish government continues in seeking to introduce gender-ideology into Scots law, they can not be considered supportive of constitutional democracy. Then again, they’ve done fuck all to protect Scotland from authoritarian English nationalism (see Brexit).

    Night, night.

    Dreaming and the brain: from phenomenology to neurophysiology

  113. Cactus says:

    Good morning Ian Brotherhood and all ye Wingers, thanks for sharing the above comment by Guybrush Threepwood, I think Guybrush paints quite an interesting picture, don’t you know Freddie?

    Scotland needs to build a new bridge… with no Bull about it. We shall see… Si.

    Onwards with the motion, challenge the buck.

  114. cynicalHighlander says:

    @Ian Brotherhood

    What the fuck are you on about? Your looking for a conspiracy that is not there except in your own gullible mind. Those pictures are deliberately taken to give a false impression and that hospital story is total nonsense . Get real for fucksake.

  115. Name (required) says:

    @ all of you ffs

    these boards used to be full of informative banter with the odd nutter trying to spoil the party.


    the tables have turned and it is way to much hard work to wade through the ill informed shite that pervades the boards.

    good article rev, keep up the good work and keep at the questions (always the questions)

  116. Sinky says:

    Name. I agree as it would seem there are forces at work trying to sabotage this forum.

    A maximum of 100 words would help with links to whatever evidence posters may have.

  117. Dorothy Devine says:

    OT But are the newspapers which lie and manipulate and undermine like BBBC Scotland and STV , really going to get money ( our money) from the Scottish Government?

    Are they daft ?Are they happy to be subjected to all the drivel ,tittle tattle , lying , lying by omission and general denigration?

    Please say it ain’t so !

  118. Bill McLean says:

    Sinky and Name(required) – totally agree. This site has become almost unreadable. Seems that most folk these days feel they have to be an extremist and insult the f… out of each other. Not given to conspiracy theories but as the popularity and perceived effectiveness of the Scottish Government improves so does the garbage being posted here. No problem with the angst about certain aspects of the government and disgusted with the treatment of Alex Salmond – but i’ll wait for conclusive evidence before I make up my mind. One thing i’m sure of is that this site is being destroyed to the detriment of our movement for independence. Regardless of whether you agree with them or not, there are and have been attempts to remove the Rev, Craig Murray, Peter A Bell and Mark Hirst from the scene.Some, in their newly acquired insight into everything, just refuse to see it and continue their destructive activities. Really sad – i’ve read this site almost since it started and been educated, encouraged, engaged and enthralled by the Rev’s writings and that of others who seem to have disappeared. Stand back and take a long hard at what you are doing/being encouraged to do!

  119. Joe says:

    First it was warnings of what trans rights and general identity politics would do to Scottish indy. Then it was warning SNP would betray you. Now its that you have literal totalitarianism arriving and the result is the same – attack the messenger. Many of you posting are simply unable to handle that your fluffy wee world view is naive,

  120. Wonder how much Heriot Watt make from tuition fees,

    is that the Uni that professor of sewage and Brutish Nationalist Scott Arthur plies his trade,

    always thought Heriot Watt was more a trade college than an actual Uni ,

    like in my day Stevenson,Telford and there was one down Moira Terrace.

  121. Willie says:

    Just read a piece on Source Direct commenting on the regressive policies now being pushed by the current Scottish Government.

    One particular comment that had resonance with me was this –

    “…There is an awful whiff of New Labour about all this; where progressive, forward-thinking policy is agreed by an energetic membership and then ignored by a sclerotic administration that has become impervious to the grassroots after more than a decade in office.”

    The energetic membership and sclerotic leadership says exactly what so many of us think.

  122. jfngw says:

    @Bill McLean

    Many of these ‘others’ removed themselves from the site or were banned because they didn’t like what the Rev was writing, it had little to do with the BTL comments except their own. They wanted a pro SNP site, that’s not what this is.

  123. ahundredthidiot says:


    why dont you disappear to YT for an hour and watch Prof Dolores Cahill interview on COVID19 – maybe see if you have the capacity to change your opinion on something.

  124. Willie says:

    Scott Finlayson @9.00AM

    Heriot Watt is an interesting college turned university.

    Very much a business in the neo liberal mould it now has campuses in Dubai and Kualla Lumpur.

    I suspect the removal of the Alex Salmond stone about free state funded education is a prelude to Herriot Watt revealing itself as an overt business. ( with attendently the corporate offshore structure more usually associated with the Richard Branson style business fraternity )

  125. Bob Mack says:

    If you expect the world to be fair to you because you are fair to others, then you are only deceiving yourself..

    Life isn’t fair. You have to stand your corner of fade away.

    Those who have left Wings because of disruption exemplify that fact.

  126. Willie says:

    And whilst I am at it privatised universities like a privatised health service or a privatised electricity company will be good.

    With our universities being focussed on shareholder returns how can it not be good.

    Alex Salmond’s vision is old hat now. The regime at the top has changed. .
    The New SNP know the way to neo liberal Nirvana. New Labour, New SNP, old Tories.

    There’s more important things than independence and quaint notions about publicly funded socially democratic public services.

  127. Lulu Bells says:

    @ Ian Brotherhood

    I think the report you reposted makes a lot of sense. Will you post the link to the original article please.
    On the point of are we locked down or not locked down, I know people who are flying back from the states today, they have spent their lockdown in their villa in Florida. They are flying to Edinburgh and getting a Taxi to their Aberdeen mansion. Lockdown is only for the poor it seems, and like so many examples have shown.

    On the matter of getting a response to Stuart’s letter (s), as one who worked in officialdom, I am thinking about what forced us to give a response when we did not want to, I am sure there will be a way, more thinking required.

  128. Willie says:

    And if it were not so grim you could smile at the soubriquet of ” Nic and the Knackers ” being applied to the First Minister and her ministerial team.

    Knowing the cost of everything and the value of nothing the agenda has slipped and slipped utterly to what we see today.

  129. Bill McLean says:

    jfngw and Bob Mack – so under circumstance decided by you certain others should be precluded. This is not an SNP site jfngw – I agree with you but does that mean it is to exclude the views of those who are pro SNP or indeed any other persuation. Strange and worrying attitudes are taking over this site!

  130. Republicofscotland says:

    Once again the EU calls to Scotland come join us as an independent nation. Are we smart enough to answer their call, I really hope so.

  131. Golfnut says:

    @ Dorothy Devine.
    I can’t remember if it was £30 or £300 million, either is unacceptable, but the SG have just stated that they will not assist tax haven registered companies, which surely applies to mostly foreign owned media.

  132. Golfnut says:

    @ Dorothy Devine.
    Should read.
    ‘ which surely applies to Scotland’s mostly foreign owned media.

  133. Republicofscotland says:

    Scotland’s Governor General Alister Jack, completely ignored the Scottish governments advice not to travel, and went to Westminster to the House of Commons yesterday. However we all know fine well he’s London’s man in Scotland, and not Scotland’s man in London.

    This ludicrous position will remain so until we find a way of ending this godforsaken union once and for all.

  134. Pete says:

    Ian Brotherwood
    Just had a chance to read your exchanges of last night and , I must say, speaking as a right wing Brexiteer Unionist, I felt you were given a hard time for no particular reason.
    Your observations were very soft and gentle with no heavy political undertones but, yet you seemed to get a lot of unfounded, rather nasty criticism for no apparent reason. The sycophants were out in force.
    As a follower of Prof. Johann Giesecke, his points are that all lockdown does is to postpone the effects of the virus and gives time for governments to organise their health services to cope.
    This, we have now done, and you gave an example of your local health services being under utilised. The same picture is throughout the country.
    It therefore seems to me that it is now time to get everyone back to normality and let those who are going to get this virus get it and if it proves fatal, then so be it.
    The damage to the economy is now so deep and devastating that it will take many years to recover and, in that process, many lives will be lost.
    We need bold politicians to make decisions which may not please the medics but, hey, that is their job.

  135. Republicofscotland says:

    I’m disgusted but not surprised by this as educators often serve power.

    “HERIOT-Watt University is removing commemorative stone containing an Alex Salmond quote about tuition fees. ”

  136. Graeme says:


    Kate Forbes MSP
    We have already agreed a £3m package with the Scottish Newspaper Society, on top of the £440,000 package for local papers. That means Scottish papers only ones to get double support from UK & Scot Govs. Many ‘local papers’ already get 100% relief through the Small Business Bonus.

  137. Golfnut says:

    For those not regular visitors to the ‘ talkingupScotland ‘ blog.

    Informative article on z scores, comparisons on excess vivid deaths. Also the comments.

  138. Effijy says:

    Humza must be busy working on his American accreditation
    and becoming a US influencer in Scotland.

    Self promotion first before dealing with the crumbling reputation of Scottish justice.

    We will now need to wait for the next letter from the Advocate’s flunky with some
    Condescending line about you don’t want to raise this here and go away as we like things
    As they are.

    In these circumstances do we try to establish if we have a Wings in every Holyrood constituency
    who are willing to forward this important enquiry and requesting an urgent reply
    Or do we look at setting up our own petition to be delivered directly to Bute House?

    I’ll keep my SNP membership and favours owed until this has delivered a satisfactory answer

  139. Golfnut says:

    @ Graeme.

    Thanks for that Graeme,although my comment is I think still relevant, there are precious few local papers which aren’t part of larger groups, almost none are Head Quartered in Scotland.

  140. Graeme says:

    No problem Golfnut, I’d like to know what newspapers she considers “Scottish”

  141. Colin Alexander says:


    All Scotland’s MPs should not be travelling to Westminster, permanently.

    Even if, “I’m alright Jack, pull up the ladder” keeps going to WM, the SNP should stay home.

    But they won’t. They have settled in at the Imperial Parliament, just as they see their role as administrators of British colonialism at Holyrood.

  142. Ron Maclean says:

    Interesting posts from ‘I have questions’ and ‘Some unsolicited advice…’

  143. Bob Mack says:

    The very minute a Right Wing ,Brexit supportkng Unionist feels sympathy for you is the clearest indicator there is, that you should perform a 180 degree turn on whatever you were saying.

  144. Prasad says:

    What i don’t understand is that Stuart reported a crime to the police, so why isn’t there a crime report? The police have to investigate crimes or give reasons why they haven’t, don’t they?

  145. Dan says:


    Aye, it’s certainly a novel strategy subsidising our wealthy adversaries to ensure they can continue to throw shit at us.

    One hopes the SNP Rebuttal Unit is currently getting tuned up with the current 50cc moped engine being replaced with a supercharged V8 so it is has the power to deal with the inevitable bullshit onslaught…

  146. Andy Ellis says:

    @Bob Mack 10.28am

    What a puerile point of view. It’s that kind of unthinking, knee jerk obscurantism that has contributed to getting Scotland in the mess it is in now. If fewer people insisted on slavish loyalty to the party line for example, the SNP might not be in the mess it is in now. The fact a right wing brexiteer may share the same view as a progressive pr-indy person does on particular issues proves precisely nothing.

    In itself, it doesn’t make their take on the issue any more or less true, or mean that we are obliged to magically change our views to the opposite of his just because *reasons*.

  147. Daisy Walker says:

    @ Prasad – ‘why isn’t there a crime report (by the Police)’ I suspect the reason for this might be because that particular crime is one for the PF to call/direct, and so the Police can legitimately refer the matter to the PF to make a decision on.

    OT – interesting article over at Scotland Goes Pop re the Independent Scottish Party ‘get on or get out’.

    He thinks that they need to show a national average of 5% in the polls to have any chance. I struggle to post on his sight for some tech reason – but I respectfully disagree.

    The way the Lib Dems and the SNP of old used to work, was to put really strong local candidates into an area and have them work it under the radar so to speak. If they do that – and target the seats accordingly they have a good chance of winning list seats.

    They have a major hinderance at present – lockdown.

    If they are to get round that, they need to do Billboards – or home made, garden versions of same, T shirts, car posters/bumper stickers, and they need a strong theme.

    And if they are able and willing, they could consider working at a Food Bank and getting ‘known’ in that way. Potentially this is the vote least likely to turn out and vote, but if they do, it can be a game changer.

    They are not undermining the SNP – they are strengthening the Indy choice.
    They are going for the LIST seats only,
    And they must do, what the SNP has chosen not to do for the last 5 years – make the case for Indy.

    Covid/lockdown has provided more evidence (as if more was necessary!) that

    Better Together really means England First,

    and if we want to save and build up our NHS, our food quality and farms, our fishing industry and clean water and renewable energy industry – it has to be Independence.

    Quietly, firmly, and somewhere down the list, their position on GRA reforms should be stated. No fuss, but there.

    Robin McAlpine said in the aftermath of 2014 that Referendums are not won during the campaign, but in the years leading up to them.

    Should the ISP start to make that case in every area where they stand, they will be covering ground which needs to be covered.

    The Unionists have 3 parties to chose from to represent their point of view. We have only one. With the greatest respect to those on here who would say ‘divided we fall’, I would respectfully suggest this is not a division, this is ensuring all our eggs are not in the one basket.

  148. Bob Mack says:

    @Andy Ellis,

    If only I cared!!

  149. Graeme says:

    I think the SNP are somewhat under the misplaced illusion we vote for them because we want to give them a comfortable lifestyle and trash womens rights, silence free speech, fund unionist newspapers, incarcerate innocent men and so on and so on.

    The sooner we get an alternative party up and running the better, because I’m finding it harder and harder to vote for these charlatans anymore, I know there are some notable exceptions but sadly thats all they are “exceptions”

  150. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @Lulu bells (9.33) –

    The comment appeared in the previous thread, which can be found at 6.18, here:

  151. lothianlad says:

    Graeme @ 11.38

    So Very Very True Sir!!

    I feel the same way

  152. Breastplate says:

    I’m also just catching up on last night’s comments.
    I agree with Pete, although that doesn’t mean I’m a right wing Brexiteer Unionist. I’m not.

    My niece is a nurse and has also stated that they are much less busier than before the virus arrived.
    Cynical Highlander, you don’t need to believe that if you don’t want to.

    At some point people need to realise that if they don’t expose themselves to the virus they won’t bloody get it, no matter how many people are at work.

  153. CameronB Brodie says:

    So who has the virus?

    Geo-social gradients in predicted COVID-19 prevalence and severity in Great Britain: results from 2,266,235 users of the COVID-19 Symptoms Tracker app

  154. Breastplate says:

    I would like to know who has the virus and who has had it.
    I think we can agree that the virus is quite contagious. So how prevalent is it in Sweden?
    There are estimates that 20% to 30 % of Swedish people have or have had the virus.

    If this is true and let’s go with the lower estimate, 2!000!000 people in Sweden have it.
    The information from 30/4/20 showed that 41 people under the age of 50 died in Sweden.
    That means the mortality rate of the virus in Sweden for under 50s is 0.00205%.
    Does that suggest to you that people under 50 are taking a massive risk going to work?

    If you have more up to date information, I will happily make the new calculations.

  155. Breastplate says:

    I’ll have to get back to you later in the day as I have a lot of painting to do.

  156. liz says:

    As others have pointed out, the so called lockdown is/was a farce when Heathrow has been in business since the beginning, no testing nothing, I saw a comment not sure if accurate, that millions of people have passed through.

    The lockdown’s purpose was to prevent the NHS being overrun, as far as I’m aware the SNHS is now operating under capacity, so we should be easing restrictions now

    Next is, I really do believe that the lockdown relaxation plan is all Nicola.
    She’s a control freak who wants to micromanage all of our lives.
    It’s going to take 12 weeks to finish relaxation but if there are more cases, as we’ve already seen, there will be because we don’t have a vaccine and the virus hasn’t gone away, the relaxation plan will be reviewed.

    People are so gullible, there’s a tweet fest , thanking Nicola, at the moment, I despair

  157. robbo says:

    Breastplate says:
    21 May, 2020 at 1:19 pm

    Maybe you can provide evidence that no matter whether 10% 20% 50% 100% get this virus makes any dam difference to the price of a loaf?

    There’s no evidence I’ve read or found anywhere that makes you immune to this particular virus-covid 19.
    People who think we should just let this rip through the world uncontrolled are bonkers.

    You’re not immune to the flu viruses yet,cos there’s hundreds of them, that’s why most vulnerable get a flu jab every year to the most virulent influenza ‘s circulating in that particular year as they mutate.

    Ask you’re doctor!

  158. CameronB Brodie says:

    I’m not trying to win an argument with you, I’m simply punting public health ethics. 😉

    COVID-19 – ethical issues. A guidance note

  159. jfngw says:

    @Bill McLean

    I haven’t precluded anyone from the site, they either did it themselves or in one occasion told the rev to ‘Fuck Off’, so if you have any complaints take it up with the site owner.

    Also how are the opinions of SNP supporters excluded, only one person has that power and it’s not me, or any other poster.You really need to stop the conspiracy nonsense, you can vote SNP but still be critical of policies you disagree with, blind obedience is not democracy.

  160. Tinto Chiel says:

    @Joe 1.50 this morning: just catching up on last night so thanks for that link to the programme on Covid and 77 Brigade. Most interesting, although I thought David Ellis was a bit inarticulate as pundit/expert.

    The lockdown’s certainly a great way of sneaking things under the radar, whether it’s trying to increase the scope of what constitutes a terrorist crime in the UK, or obscuring the likelihood of a crash-out Brexit in June or a potentially grave international incident in the Caribbean once those Iranian tankers meet the US fleet off Venezuela.

    Not forgetting Craig Murray’s court case before three judges for contempt of court next month, but that one’s on the Scottish Establishment, of course.

  161. PacMan says:

    Ian Brotherhood says: 21 May, 2020 at 12:17 am

    @PacMan –

    Good question.

    I don’t know what will happen.

    But a hefty % of the folk I saw out this morning *were* elderly and/or infirm, were being helped, were in buggies etc. Don’t get me wrong – it was nowhere near as ‘busy’ as those pictures of Portobello, but it was relatively busy, for here. Definitely a lot of folk who are not locals, or mibbe locals heading for the shore for the first time in years.

    And I wasn’t out for long because I had the dog and he doesn’t like being near other dogs after a couple of nasty attacks in recent years – actually had to retreat because it was just too likely that other dogs would get close and he’d just ‘freeze’, as he does these days.

    My honest feeling is that folk have had enough and are taking what they reckon to be acceptable risks. We’ll find out soon enough if they were right or not.

    This is the problem Ian. Nobody knows the consequences of their actions so why take the risk of participating in these behaviours that could possibly infecting others and in turn extends the outbreak?

    Make no doubt about it, there is a lot of BS going on about this health crisis and the lock down is a joke where the rich and powerful can do what they want. However, most of us have no control over these individuals and can only do what we can to try and help with the health crisis.

    Just a parting thought. From what I can gather, the lock down is going to be lifted or eased depending on the rate of tranmission by reported infections. My work has temperature sensors where people will be stopped if they have a high temperature. I’m not sure what the process is when that happens but it isn’t hard to imagine that somebody like that will not be allowed to come into work and will be asked to get themselves tested under the upcoming test, track, isolate and support scheme that will soon be implemented.

    If that happens it will cause a spike in infection rate even though most people who have it are unaffected by the virus. That means the health crisis is continued. Would it not make sense just to follow the rules so this can be ended as quickly as possible so we can stop the state from poking their noses into our personal businesses?

  162. Joe says:

    Through most of this ‘pandemic’ we have had no solid ability to test. Couple that with the staggering disparity in cases between countries who locked down v those who didn’t and there is a logical problem that is blatantly staring everyone in the face.

  163. Joe says:

    @Tinto Chiel

    My pleasure. I generally rub digital shoulders with the unclean ones who share alternate info/viewpoints and ill share the better stuff here. The media and political class cannot be trusted for anything now. At all.

  164. CameronB Brodie says:

    Care to expand on the ethical parameters of your analysis. Asking on behalf of the unclean. 😉

    Expanding the precautionary principle

  165. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @Pacman (3.13) –

    I suppose there’s an element of damned-if-we-do-damned-if-we-don’t now.

    In any event, the blame game will go on. It’s all very depressing.


  166. Breastplate says:

    I’m not trying to argue with you or anyone else.
    I get frustrated at times by people on here who should know better, who ignore logic, reason and pertinent information to wallow in sensationalist claptrap.

    When I speak about people who know better, that’s not you Robbo, as a direct descendant of Chicken Little, you can carry on shouting “the sky is falling”. You wear it so well.
    I’m still trying to figure out if you’re an arsehole or an angry chimpanzee that’s punching funk out of a keyboard.

  167. CameronB Brodie says:

    I hear you and think I understand your frustration. I’m simply putting what I remember of my professional training into action, and hopefully providing a guide towards ethical decision making. 😉

    Science for Environment Policy

    The precautionary principle: decision-making under uncertainty
    September 2017

  168. Breastplate says:

    Of course CBB,
    That’s as it should be, we should all expect the best decisions based on the best information.
    I’m not suggesting we should make unethical decisions for the hell of it.

    I’m sure, faced with a Kantian conundrum, we would all find our own solutions.

  169. CameronB Brodie says:

    I think I made a point of mentioning I didn’t think you were coming from anywhere nasty. 🙂


  170. Bill McLean says:

    jfngw at 1.55 Don’t read that post again – it will only embarrass you further!

  171. Tinto Chiel says:

    @Joe: I noticed from the latest Covid figures that Sweden’s death per million is 380 and the UK’s is 542, despite the former’s much-criticised so-called “herd immunity” policy, which appears to have been down to initially poor protection in care homes, something their government regrets and admits it got wrong, concepts obviously unknown to ours.

    At the moment, I wonder whose management of the Covid situation looks better? At the moment, Sweden’s economy seems less damaged and its people less vulnerable to the famous/infamous “Second Wave”.

  172. CameronB Brodie says:

    You might be interested in this. Liberated from the EU, the precautionary principle, and global health law, I fear for Scotland’s future. I’m also disappointed with the legal measures taken against Westminster, who have overstepped their moral legal authority. 😉

    A Kantian approach to sustainable development indicators for climate change

  173. Elmac says:

    Just catching up belatedly on this thread. The SG response was predictable but utterly disgraceful. How much longer are we as Scots going to put up with this sh#t? Nothing is changing in fact it is becoming ever more dystopian. We need a genuine independence party and we need it now. There is no point in voting SNP unless there is an urgent and complete clear out from top to bottom. As things stand there is nobody I can vote for, I am disenfranchised. I will not vote for more of the same whether it be dressed in blue, red, orange, or the latest hue, yellow.

    I fear civil unrest unless our daily diet of lies, obfuscation and corruption is addressed, and soon.

  174. CameronB Brodie says:

    Here’s a bit of legal theory to put that last link into context. Scotland seriously needs to ask serious questions of our judiciary, about stuff in general but their ambivalence towards Brexit and biology in particular. Full text.

    Judges as moral reasoners

    Debates about judicial authority?including debates about the desirability of judicial review of legislation—sometimes turn on the question of whether judges have superior skills when it comes to addressing what are, essentially, moral issues about rights. This paper considers the possibility that the answer may be “no,” not because judges are inept morally, but because the institutional setting in which they act and the role that they adopt both require them to address questions about rights in a particular legalistic way – indeed, in a way that, sometimes, makes it harder rather than easier for essential moral questions to be identified and addressed.

    Of course, what we want is for moral issues to be addressed, not as one would make a personal moral decision, but in the name of the whole society. Perhaps the judicial mode of addressing them satisfies that description, but there are other ways of satisfying it too – including legislative approaches, which proceed by identifying all the issues and all the opinions that might be relevant to a decision, rather than artificially limiting them in the way that courts do.

  175. Scozzie says:

    Why not write a letter asking him to outline in detail what exactly the Justice Minister is responsible for….cough, cough if not justice and the judicial system which surely must include the conduct of COPFS!

    Here’s an interesting read – how Mongolia got it right on COVID19 – seems timing is everything!

  176. robbo says:

    That’s an amazing story scozzie!


    Just shows what you can do when applying the 7 P’s principal. Well done Mongolia

  177. Innocent says:

    Are you feeling a bit dim headed?

    It literally states in the 1998 Act (which itself is a reserved matter so can’t be amended by the devolved competencies of the Scottish Parliament and therefore it’s ministers) that the Lord Advocate’s duties in relation to your question are wholly independent.

    This website used to be good at propelling narratives against unionists that others couldn’t. Shame to see all that work go down the drain.

    Doubt this will even get published.

  178. F Mooney says:

    “Indeed” as a word, bothers me.

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