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Wings Over Scotland

Shiny happy people

Posted on October 02, 2012 by

We decided it was about time we took in some of the Labour conference, and tuned in this morning in time for the special “Better Together” session, when the party devoted around 40 prime-time minutes early on a Tuesday morning to emphasising just how much the UK values Scotland and Wales (although apparently not Northern Ireland).

Several dozen people crammed into a hall with a capacity of 9,000 to hear Gordon Matheson, Margaret Curran and Johann Lamont represent North Britain, followed by a token Welsh bloke we’ve never heard of and finally the fragrant Dame Tessa Jowell to celebrate “Team GB” and the success of the Great Patriotic Olympics.

The crowd, as you’ll see below, went wild.

But we can’t leave it like that. Surely there must have been ONE person somewhere in the cavernous, mostly-empty hall who was enjoying themselves?

Aw, bless his wee heart.

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121 to “Shiny happy people”

  1. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    Viewers! Send in captions for your favourite shots and we’ll add the best.

  2. Cuphook says:

    I was reading this BBC report and had to laugh at the quote ” Harriet Harman said she was delighted to see that Ms Lamont had wiped the “smug, arrogant” smile off SNP leader Alex Salmond’s face since taking on the leadership role.” She even got a Tartan Tories jibe in. 

    Perhaps this is why they are against free prescriptions – Labour politicians are worried that the drugs will run out and they’ll have to face reality.  

  3. Doug Daniel says:

    “emphasising just how much the UK values Scotland and Wales (although apparently not Northern Ireland).”

    No surprise really – they’ve removed the St Patrick’s cross from their Union Jack backgrounds…

  4. MajorBloodnok says:


    “ah got ma wallies fer free oan ra NHS so ah’ve gi’en them back oan principle”


    “does my bunnet look big in this?”

  5. Doug Daniel says:

    Ed: “Oh shit, we’ve got Jimmy Krankie in charge of Scotland?”

  6. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    “they’ve removed the St Patrick’s cross from their Union Jack backgrounds…”

    Well spotted…

    I thought what was bugging me about them was that they are essentially large St George Crosses with the minimal input of Scotland around the edges but the focus solely on England as a metaphor for the Union….

    But now that image is complete as it also shows a total lack of interest in Wales and NI too…

    It really IS a metaphor for the Union

  7. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:


    “I have a cunning plan…”

  8. scottish_skier says:

    Ye see that blue screen ahind us; aye, that proves who the real tartan tories are sae it dis.
    Last guy
    I told the wife to get me tickets for the Tory conference, but what the hell, this is just as good.

  9. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    Last Guy on LabConf2

    “This on stage version of ‘The Thick of It’ is genius… Where do they get these off the wall ideas?”

  10. velofello says:

    Just how many jaikets does Ma Lamont’s partner have? Is that a natty dark grey with stripe she’s wearing today at the conference? very chivalrous of him, she must be feeling a cold blast. i wonder is he wearing the pants at Glesca council today? He is there isn’t he?
    The numbers game, surely you are mistaken there, it must be at least a standing room (optional) at the Labour conference. Be fair, photos showed that the independence march filled the circa 12000 capacity at Edinburgh Princes Garden venue with a media reported crowd of 5000. i’d say standing room to hear Ms Lamont in Manchester.

  11. scottish_skier says:

    Mags Curran
    Em whit was a gonnae say. Och shite, no again.

    First pic
    Before we kick off, anyone here from Scotchland? Come on, come on, don’t be shy.

  12. Cuphook says:

    10 Command completed successfully. Please restart the system for the changes to take effect.
    15 Despite his creation’s incoherent mumblings Victor Frankenstein is overcome with pride. ‘She lives’.
    18 The quiche, I think.
    19 The ladies agree that Ed dresses to the right.
    24 As the perils of online dating become apparent to Tracey she wishes she’d gone out with Rob instead. Rob has a Toyota Yaris.

  13. Betsy says:

    Sweet Jesus! Would you look at them. The blue background, the rows of empty seats and a display of union flags that the average Orange Lodge would think a bit OTT. I expect the only thing stopping them inviting Thatcher along is the fear it might be seen as a radical shift to the left.

  14. John Lyons says:


    Someone needs to tell this Welsh guy we’re AGAINST free prescriptions!

  15. MajorBloodnok says:


    Cyril Fletcher is a live and well and voting Labour “Pin back your lugholes!”

  16. Tris says:

    Maggie Curren:

    Was that a wasp I just swallowed?

    Wouldn’t Maggie make a superb poster girl for Bitter Together. She seems to personify the bitterness part of it.

    I think the lack of St Patrick’s cross on the logo is because someone simply lifted it from the mega successful Labcon Olympics, and thought that some of the glitter might rub off on the conference. It probably didn’t occur to them that the UK and GB were not the same thing.

    Did my ears serve me well this morning when I heard that  Labour had now adopted David Cameron’s Big Society? When, I wonder, will they change their colour to blue?

  17. Alex McI says:

    Labconf 11 Eh hullo , I thought this wus the X factor auditions, where’s Simon

  18. Training Day says:

    Labconf 2:

    Great to see Harry Enfield reprise his role as ‘Tory Boy’..  

  19. Cuphook says:

    8 Margaret was momentarily confused when she realised that defeat tasted like chicken.

  20. Luigi says:

    Spot the Tory? Spot the Tories? Naw, too easy!

  21. Cuphook says:

    3 If you’re happy and you know it…

  22. Training Day says:

    Labconf 11:

    Haud oan, ra autocue huz nearly fixed itsel’..  

  23. Alex McI says:

    Labconf 13 oh my god Iain davidsons got a hammer, stop him johann.

  24. Alex McI says:

    Labconf 8 Oh Christ I’ve followed through.

  25. pmcrek says:

    Look at that 3/4’s empty arena, Joe Stalin will be spinning in his grave.

  26. Cuphook says:

    4 Roses are red, Ed is blue, what’s a girl to do with all these mixed signals?

  27. Cuphook says:

    2 The usual rectal dose is 0.2-0.5 mg/kg and depends on the age of the patient.

  28. scottish_skier says:

    It’s working. The poor stupid fools are turning before my very eyes. Dave was right.

  29. Alex McI says:

    Labconf 7 what the fuck am I doing here

  30. Alex McI says:

    Labconf 11 Eh excuse me can I go to the toilet Ed?

  31. Ally says:

    P6 – “Did you lock the back door?”

    “Not sure – I think so!”   

  32. Marcia says:

    I was thinking of a good caption for the 13th photograph but then I have a dirty mind. 🙂

  33. Alex McI says:

    Labconf 14 Stick your bloody flag Colin , I thought you said we were going to a party.

  34. scottish_skier says:

    Mags Curran.
    Can foks pleash sheck unner yer seats fir a set o teef
    Ye see this finger? Aye, ‘uv finally pulled it oot so a huv.
    Labconf17 (lady in dark pink top)
    I loved that cat. Just can’t believe he’s gone.

  35. Ally says:


    “Sorry folks – I really couldn’t help it! The Manchester Curry Mile definitely is worth a visit though!” 

  36. Andrew says:

    They’re no under here Magrit

  37. Ally says:


    Jim Murphy hopes no-one will recognise him sneaking in at the back in his “weekend clobber” 

  38. TamD says:


    “My flag is truest Blue and I’ll take that bus pass off you”

  39. james morton says:

    New and improved Labour products! With a new secret ingredient: Smylex.
    Now, let’s go over to our blind taste test. Uh-oh. .
    *Zooming in on Miliband*
    He don’t look happy…but then He’s been using Brand Salmond.
    But with new and improved Labour brand, I get a grin again and again.
    *Zooms in Margaret Cummming*
    That luscious tan, those ruby lips, and hair color so natural, only your undertaker knows for sure. I know what you’re saying: where can I get these fine new items? Well that’s the gag. Chances are, you’ve bought ’em already! So, remember, spread a little sunshine, and put on a happy face!

  40. Ally says:


    Wonder what I’ll do now that the season is over at Maplins!! – HiDeHi 

  41. Morag says:

    I’m surprised by the empty seats.  It’s not going to be like that on 20th October, I’ll bet.  Even though I can’t be there, having done some serious double-booking without realising it.

  42. TYRAN says:

    LOL. Remember these and others from last week…
    – Seriously, is this #indyrally a secret gathering? I have seen better turnouts at bowls tournaments @JamesMills1984 – Labour Party press officer

  43. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

    Oh dear, it would appear that the Welsh FM has told London Labour to go take a running fuck, when it comes to free prescription charges. Bearing in mind Ed Balls  mentioned it in his tirade yesterday.

    I haven’t listened to any more of their crap-nor do I intend doing so.



  44. scottish_skier says:

    Labconf18 (gent)
    Oh shit, did I turn off the oven before we left?  

  45. TYRAN says:

    “they’ve removed the St Patrick’s cross from their Union Jack backgrounds…”
    Well spotted…

    ^ I thought this on the news yesterday but during another cut, the placard below the speaker (pic 7) showed a very light St Patrick’s cross. It seemed to be in the lightest of blues, like something out of a Team GB design.

  46. Jeannie says:

    So that’s wan fish supper, wan single fish, wan deep-fried pizza and wan chips wi curry sauce….so jist wan o everythin’ then?

  47. Jeannie says:

    Maigrit Curran:
    Aw naw! My fangs are comin’ oot – usually disnae happen before sunset.!

  48. MajorBloodnok says:


    “Right, which one o yous socialist bastards stole ma hat?”

  49. tartanfever says:

    4th pic from bottom (guy on bottom left)
    ‘look everyone, I can get my phone up my nose’ 

    10th from bottom
    girl on the right has just found the comedy ‘whoopee cushion’

    Margaret Curran pic – ‘shit, I’ve forgotten ma teeth !’
    (sorry Jeanie’s already done this one)

  50. Jeannie says:

    Picture of Lamont:
    Johann Lamont was not available for comment, but her mysterious body double stressed there was no need to worry as everything would be Fan-Dabbi-Dozi!

  51. MajorBloodnok says:

    Picture of Lamont, voice of Gary Robertson from off stage:

    “Right.  Own up.  Who thinks means testing in Scotland is a good idea?”

  52. Jeannie says:

    Picture of Lamont:
    There was a stunned silence as Johann demonstrated the new body search security measures the SNP would put in place at Gretna in the event of independence.

  53. Arbroath 1320 says:

    Pic 3:
    Man in blue shirt, woman in stripey top and woman in red sweater. “Dear God please let me live. I don’t want to die. I’m too young to die!”
    Man in white shirt. “I wonder if I sneak away now anyone will notice?”

    Pic 8: “Hope they don’t show this in Northern Ireland!”

    Pic 12:
    Man and woman in front “Let us pray. Dear God why are we punished so?”
    Pic 18:
    Man in white shirt “I think I’m about to throw up!”

  54. YesYesYes says:

    Oh my God! I see that gormless Ed is doing his Billy Graham impression. The only thing missing so far is the gospel choir.

  55. Appleby says:

    Lamont seems so gormless and useless in everything she does I find it hard to imagine her being allowed to even be a teacher. What class of poor kids stands a chance in life if someone like that is teaching them? I’d want a bright person with quick wits and a good sense of humour to teach my kids. Every time she’s on telly she gives me the dry boak.

  56. scottish_skier says:


    While contemplating another night in the spare room, Bob wondered whether the union jack he had been given was actually upside down.

  57. wulie says:

    Pic No 3
    man with specs behind wummin wi red jumper.
    Oh thats a rare bogey tae roll aboot in ma fingers, woner if Gordy ever got wan as good an tacky as this, should a eat it should a no.

  58. Macart says:


    This wummin’s no fur turnin’. 

  59. G. Campbell says:

    Curran: “So I rented oot this Phil Cool VHS the other day and there wiz this bit where… Ah, feck, I’ve forgoat ma torch.”

    Lamont: “Please Sir, can I have some more. Oops, I mean a lot less.”

    Curran: “And then the jakey in flat 5 says he couldnae afford the stair money this week, so I pure laid into him, like – verybally I means. ‘Gies us the cash or or I’ll stick this mop up yer…’ I says. ‘Cough up the readies or ye can dae the landing next week yersel.’ I wiz like Ian Davidson in full flow. You should have seen the guys face. Ah, christ, where the hell did I put ma torch.”

    abconf2 (last pic):
    I love trumpets, me. Best Last Night of the Proms ever!

    Curran: “Foond the bastart! The batteries are a bit low, mind. Any requests? I’ve been telt I dae a brilliant Duncan McNeil.”

  60. MajorBloodnok says:

    By the way, here’s a quote from Lamont’s speech (from the BBC):

    “Conference, Scottish Labour is not afraid to be honest with the people of Scotland, and not afraid to expose Alex Salmond and his Tartan Tories who try to wear our clothing while punishing the people they should be protecting.”

    I took that to mean she was accusing the SNP of stealing Labour’s Tartan Tory clothes.  And Labour’s honesty?  Classic double-speak.

    Labour policy seems to be – when in a hole, keep digging.

  61. Alex McI says:

    Majorbloodnok pmsl

    “Right, which one o yous socialist bastards stole ma hat?”

      Clear winner for no 11

  62. Morag says:

    That isn’t going to work.  The “Tartan Tories” gibe was old ten years ago.  Hell, it was old twenty years ago.  She’s tallking to an electorate that voted 45% for “Alex Salmond for First Minister” and actually polled a majority in 69 of the 73 constituencies on that question (that’s taking the list vote on a constituency basis).

    She’s talking to an electorate which according to recent opinion polls seems to be prepared to vote SNP for Westminster to the order of about 48%.

    And all these people have heard “Tartan Tories” so often it just washes over them without registering.  She is going to have to think of something else.

  63. Arbroath 1320 says:

    Pic 10:
    “Aw Jeez, I hope no one in here reads the poll in the Independent today, if they do I’m done for! I wonder if Dave is up for having me as Deputy P.M. in 3 years time?”

  64. TYRAN says:

    Pic 11 – (Lamont) – “The SNP are shutting down the debate” x 1000

  65. panda paws says:

    According to the BBC (not Scotlandshire!) Millband has told Labour conference that –
    Scotland could go it alone but the UK would be poorer as a result “not JUST (my emphasis) in pounds and pence but in the soul of the nation”
    What you mean we aren’t subsidy junkies, Maybe we can afford Granny’s bus pass after all!

  66. cynicalHighlander says:

    Just to save anyone trying to report on Johann’s speech it has been already done.
    Hit the right tone in my opinion.

  67. MajorBloodnok says:


    “And some of them have them this big.”

    (with apologies to Enoch Powell)

  68. Castle Rock says:


    Name me wan Labour MSP, just wan!

  69. Castle Rock says:


    And when its ma turn tae turn ma back oan ra Parliament and get a seat in Westminster I’ll get a big hoose just like Mags above

  70. Clarinda says:

    May I suggest that the official top caption on all photos – LIVE – must be ironic?

  71. Westie7 says:

    Has anyone else noticed Brian Taylors Blog headline on the BBC Jockland News page
    “Follow My Leader”

    sometimes the truth stares you right in the face 

  72. Juteman says:

    Curran shouts ‘that’s mingin, who dropped that?’
     Lamont says ‘it was me, eh’v swappes the white puddins fir jellied eels’

  73. Morag says:

    I can just imagine the conversation.  Here, A’ve just threatened tae tak awa the bus passes and bring in uni tuition fees, and it’s wur conference.  Whit dae a say so’s tae rubbish the SNP?

    Oh, a ken.  A’ll caa them Tartan Tories.  That aye works.

    Oh, wait….

  74. Cuphook says:

    21 Suspecting that those wretched cybernats might run a caption competition the lads attempt an inscrutable countenance.

  75. Appleby says:

    “Has anyone else noticed Brian Taylors Blog headline on the BBC Jockland News page
    “Follow My Leader”

    sometimes the truth stares you right in the face”
    Oh my. Couldn’t have made it much clearer, really.
     But then we’d not expect much better from BBC Scotland.

  76. tartanfever says:

    Tessa Jowell celebrates ‘Team GB’s achievements. Poor old Northern Ireland, after putting in their fair share of dosh to host the games, they are then left out of the team name.

  77. Richie says:

    #8 Muggie Curran begins to eat herself.

    #13 Eric Idle caught dressed as a woman.

    #15 Woman can’t stop yawning at boring shite.

    #21 They said they wouldn’t let us leave. I’m going to shout “nonsense”.

  78. ScottyC1314 says:

    Pic 8 – “has anyone in the audience seen ma teeth?”

    Pic 11 – “its fun to be at the…..Y….M….C….A…….”

    Pic 21 – “Aye….ah saw her at the Hamersmith Apollo….she was mince then an aw”

  79. scottish_skier says:

    Well that’s it then. Labour are one nation Tories and proud of it. Calling all Tories to their cause etc.

    Great stuff. 

  80. Davy says:

    No7 – But Miss Lamont said we have to sit still and not smile.

    No8 – Toffee, bloody toffee, Margaret Curran.

    No11 – All together now Lamont’bo style, You put right hand in, you put your right hand out, inout inout and you shake all about, you do the hokey COKEY.

    No14 – Ed miliband, errr thats a lot of tories.

    Final picture, I’ve just farted, come on its funny. 

  81. scottish_skier says:

    Interesting this wee snippet from Brian

    PS: A little sidebar to the item I ran yesterday. I had suggested that publication of the responses to the Scottish government consultation on the referendum might be deferred as the emphasis now was upon reaching a deal with the UK government.
    In passing, I had reported that such a deferral was backed, indeed initially suggested, by the UK government.
    In the way that one does, I have now received an alternative scenario. Not a UKG wheeze, I am told.
    UK ministers, I am advised, are scarcely going to cause a fuss and press for publication now. They are not inclined to make mischief. But they dissent, ever so gently, from the notion that it was their idea.
    Consensus, though, appears to persist.
    The deal takes priority over publication. To stress once more, it is emphasised by the Scottish government that the consultation has played a real role in formulating their strategy.

    So the deal is done before the consultation results are released. Or rather, the consultation is of little matter now the deal is being done.

    Interestingly, as the Tories do a ‘deal’ with the SNP, Labour desperately tries to save the union by suddenly and completely rebranding itself as some sort of UK version of the SNP but waving a light blue flag. 

    Something is afoot.

  82. Alex McI says:

    Scottish skier, a lot of what you have been saying the last couple of weeks seems to be playing out. I can’t help but worry that we will end up disappointed and conned by Westminster.
    I hope we don’t end up with nothing. 

  83. Jeannie says:

    O/T Very good article in the Herald today by Ruth Wishart under Comment section, criticising ATOS and incapacity benefit interviews.

  84. Roll_On_2014 says:

    Bottom photo… guy with glasses:
    “It’s getting hilarious, who does this idiot think he is ‘Geral Ratner’, selling us the same old crap year after year”.

  85. Cuphook says:

    I was intrigued by these two paragraphs in Brian’s blog yesterday:
    “…it is apparently emerging as a consensus that full-scale publication of the Scottish government consultation document would involve both delay and distraction.

    It is stressed by the Scottish Government side that the consultation exercise has played a real part in informing the thinking of ministers and civil servants. It has in no sense been neglected, they insist.”

    To my mind that reads as though there is a large, if not majority, response favourable to a second question. If that’s the case the SG will have to ensure that Westminster caries the blame for excluding it.

    It would also mean that the majority is not content with the status quo.

  86. scottish_skier says:

    @alex Mcl

    I stared in wonder at Labour today (well since Johann’s ‘something for nothing’ speech actually). This is not a normal conference. They have in effect completely rebranded themselves. You only do that if you fear that you are going to be out of power for a long time. Why do that when you are looking good in the polls for the UKGE and seemingly confident Scots are going to vote no? Nope, they’re falling apart instead, so are trying something completely different in a desperate attempt to stop what seems to be inevitable.

    The ‘deal’ before the consultation struck me. The consultation is irrelevant if a deal is struck which is not based on it. The way the Scotland bill was handled was so easy. Now the referendum deal seems to be going swimmingly too. Really, if the Tories wanted to make trouble, they could. Have a look at Spain/catalonia. 

    There is real politic going on behind closed doors between the Scottish and UK governments. There must be, at least to ensure if there is a yes, the aftermath is tidy. However, the ease with which things are going between the Tories and the SNP says to me, as per Peter Cruddas, that they don’t really support the union anymore, or at least accept that they can’t win a majority and keep Scotland. They predicted we would get to this point back in 1997 after all.

    And I’m not worried about the Tories conning us. They are an irrelevance in Scotland with no power to do anything really. Scotland is free to leave with all it owns if it sees fit. It also has their WMDs so they’re not going to risk playing too nasty.

  87. Roll_On_2014 says:

    Stu please can you sort out your spam filter. I posted a comment and it did not show after posting the same comment again… twice I got the message cannot post a replica of my previous post, or words to that affect.

  88. Dcanmore says:

    My tuppence worth …

    1. Okay, that’s as many as we’re going to get, ‘LOCK THE DOORS’ so they can’t get out.

    2. ‘This Sudoku on the phone is a bit tough.’

    3. What time is the scones and tea?

    4. ‘Will this pissed off look get me thrown out?’ …

    5. … ‘naw we’ve been trying it for hours, it hasnae worked.’

    6. ‘am tryin the pissed aff look one more time’.

    7. ‘We were told this was going to be fun, you know, for students like.’

    8. ‘I jist wanted to say that am no a man in drag.’

    9. ‘Would the last person to leave the auditorium please turn out the lights.’

    10. ‘Where the fuck is Jaimsie, he better no on the pish wi Rab.’

    11. ‘See that colour behind me, that’s ma favourite.’

    12. ‘… lovely to see in attendance, Eric Idle, and her husband who is a lumberjack.’

    13. ‘Wonderful by jove, this is the first time i’ve had an invite since 1977.’

    14. ‘Call this a date? You dragged me all the way oot here for this? Put that fucking flag awa yer spaz the Olympics are feenished.’

    15. ‘Welcome to the Church of Scientology. One church, one nation. Believe in me.’

    16. ‘Thank you, thank you. I am glad you could gather here in your tens.’

    17. ‘This is a great place for meditation.’

    18. ‘… and here we see football legend Joe Jordan about to boak up a sausage roll.’

    19. ‘they bused us in from Lithuania.’

    20. ‘the sausage rolls are lethal and they’re only that big.’

    21. ‘Christ! Alistair Darling has let himself go a bit.’

    22. ‘And the winner for this year’s champagne socialist lookalike competition goes to the even fatter than fat James Corden. Well done here’s a flag and an invite to next year’s wash out.’

  89. Colin Dunn says:

    ” . . they don’t really support the union anymore, or at least accept that they can’t win a majority and keep Scotland.”

    You’re not thinking the unthinkable, are you? That Ian Smart might be right after all 😉

  90. scottish_skier says:

    @Colin Dunn

    Ha ha. You mean no referendum?

    Na. Just one that is offering a solution which appeals to both independence supporters and devo maxers but will be independence. Ergo, the result will be a foregone conclusion. Bit like 1997 when really the result was guaranteed.

    After all, there’s no need to make this messy and in the end it’s being going only one  way for 60 years now. 

  91. Alex McI says:

    @scottish_skier, as you say something has got labour really rattled and it looks like they know they are so far out the loop, they are thrashing around hoping something will work for them.
    I really hope that the Tories have said fuck it let them go, as you said previously it probably suits Cameron’s agenda, ie west Lothian question , boundary changes agreed , and perhaps he will get his Euro referendum, and be able to take credit from his backbenchers, while blaming Scotland when it suits him. Ah well time will tell, but something is going on in the background for sure. 

  92. Castle Rock says:


    Good comments. I think the Tories know that the game is up (both in terms of a potential Yes vote and their future in Scotland) and that is why the Labour Party are coming out with all this One Nation dross to see if it will save their skins.
    It doesn’t explain the role of the LibDems though vis-à-vis the negotiations with Nicola Sturgeon.  No matter the lack of political nous of Michael Moore, as a party they should have enough awareness and skill to stop the Tories finessing them so that they don’t end up with egg on their faces.

  93. Morag says:

    I’m not really worried that we’ll be conned, because I trust the strategy team that delivered in May 2011.  The same team has been wrapping wet towels round its forehead for years, gaming the moves towards a yes in 2014.
    I didn’t used to be like this.  Back in the early 1990s in particular I was beating my head against the wall in despair at the general level of foot-shooting that was going on.  Things are different now.  These guys are not daft, and they are not going to be out-smarted by an amateur like Cameron.
    Look, they’re us.  They’re us on steroids.  They want independence, and they want it so badly they’ve turned it into a full-time job.  And they’re good at it.  The finishing line is in sight, and they’re not going to do something stupid and drop the egg off the spoon at this stage.
    If they think this can be done by a deal instead of a fight, I’m pretty encouraged by that.

  94. scottish_skier says:

    @Castle rock
    The Lib Party is dead in Scotland (not social liberalism of course; it’s now moved to the SNP mainly, the other ‘yellow’ party in Scotland). They have less support than the Tories now. Michael Moore will do anything he’s told to do, otherwise his career is over I’d imagine.

    The UK Lib Dems have really nothing to lose from Scotland as per the Tories, i.e. what 1-2 MPs if they are lucky? I doubt Scotland is top of Nick or Vince’s priority list election-wise anyway; they’ve England to worry about. Wullie Rennie is on his own. 

    In the end, 51% of the electorate in Scotland voted for parties other than the big UK three in 2011 and all advocating independence. This has been on the up since the 60’s (first spike in 1974-1979). We have got to a point where the biggest UK party is struggling to hold 30% of the domestic vote. Even if Scotland remained in exactly the same economic position as the UK for the foreseeable it is still best to vote for independence simply to have parties with the most support governing Scotland/taxing and spending what we manage to all earn.

    Unless for some magical reason Scots flock back en mass suddenly and relatively equally to either of the big two, returning us to the heady days of the 1950s/60s post war consensus, it’s just not sustainable. 

  95. Morag says:

    Each wave takes us higher up the beach.  Each time the undertow sucks back, the obituaries are written.  But the next wave goes even further.
    You know the old puzzle.  A monkey is climbing a ten-foot pole.  Each day he climbs three feet, each night he slides back two feet.  How long till he gets to the top?
    Eight days.  Once he gets to the top, he doesn’t slide back.  Once our wave hits the finish line, that’s it.  I kind of think this is the one.  I hope it is.  If it’s not, the following one will do it, but I’m not in the mood to wait another ten years – or even five.

  96. mato21 says:

    Our Johann must either have been kept short on the housekeeping or was a bad manager of her household funds since she hid the gas bills the reminders and the final notices in the drawer unopened This is the woman who wants us to trust her with the finances of Scotland and she admits she did not pay her bills on time Good job they stopped the roups or she may have found herself on the receiving end of the bailiffs knock on the door  

  97. velofello says:

    Put simply, I’m with Morag. The two Ps, principle and pragmatism, work with both in your hand.

  98. Dr Steinberg says:

    Johann Lamont
    “Ooh look. Blue is the new red!”

    Pic 21 Guy on right
    “That’s the last time I write to Jim’ll Fix It.”

  99. scottish_skier says:



  100. Jeannie says:

    Sorry, O/T again, but there’s a great opinion piece by Kenneth Roy on Newsnet on the lack of teaching of Scottish literature in our schools.

  101. Morag says:

    Johann has just said (recorded, on Newsnicht) that Alex Salmond cheered David Cameron into no. 10 because it suited his politics.
    Wait a minute.  Didn’t Gordon Brown cheer David Cameron into no. 10 because he wouldn’t contemplate a coalition with an entirely willing SNP under any circumstances?  I seem to remember Labour explicitly preferred the Tories in government to having to talk to the SNP.
    Am I hallucinating?

  102. Dr Steinberg says:

    Ed Milliband, Mars  Attacks –
    President Dale
    : “Why can’t we work out our differences? Why can’t we work things out? Little people, why can’t we all just get along?”

  103. charlie says:

    lighting  manager: aye ye ken that’s aw blue, light blue  an the england flag’s a bit prominent wi this lighting
    SLP: London likes it ‘going forward’ and are you scottish? would you vote for us please?

  104. Adrian B says:

    Rev Stu

    Several dozen people crammed into a hall with a capacity of 9,000 to hear Gordon Matheson, Margaret Curran and Johann Lamont represent North Britain, followed by a token Welsh bloke we’ve never heard of and finally the fragrant Dame Tessa Jowell to celebrate “Team GB” and the success of the Great Patriotic Olympics.
    The crowd, as you’ll see below, went wild.

    At the end of an extremely long working day I am going to bed with a big smile on my face, knowing full well that the world is a better place than it was only two weeks ago.

    I find it rather telling that Labour rUK flag does not feature the St. Andrew’s Cross. Labour know they are dead in Scotland and have admitted that they will not be able to save the Union.  

  105. charlie says:

    Where I am in Dudley MBC the LibDems became interchangable with the Tories and candidates were changing parties when the councililor lost their council seat. Since the Labour Party in Dudley CLP were so right wing there ceased to be an alternative. No lesssons for Scotland  there then…
    always voted here labour or green whoever had a chance because they’re not tories

    I don’t think the LibDems have any negociating power – a beached whale gets sympathy, a haddock that swum into a net gets little… as Confucious neant to say

    cheers charlie

    Good comments. I think the Tories know that the game is up (both in terms of a potential Yes vote and their future in Scotland) and that is why the Labour Party are coming out with all this One Nation dross to see if it will save their skins.
    It doesn’t explain the role of the LibDems though vis-à-vis the negotiations with Nicola Sturgeon. No matter the lack of political nous of Michael Moore, as a party they should have enough awareness and skill to stop the Tories finessing them so that they don’t end up with egg on their faces.

  106. Stuart M says:

    the Lib Dems currently in Government, particularly the Scottish ones, will be very easily bought. Remember, win or lose in 2015 Cameron gets to do a dissolution Honours list. With Moore a near-certainty to lose his constituency seat (look it up on wiki, his win over the Tories is built entirely on Labour/SNP tactical voting), he’ll do exactly what he’s told in order to reach the Ermine payola.

  107. douglas clark says:

    Stuart M,
    Will there really be an ermine payola for Scots that become enobled? As the Lords are part of the Westminster legislature, I’d have assumed that in the event of a ‘Yes’ vote, part of the deal would be that all Scottish Lords and Ladies would be automatically excluded.

  108. scottish_skier says:


    Sanjeep found himself mesmerised by the stray helium balloon as it soared majestically towards the lighting gantry. 

  109. Lewis says:

    “No surprise really – they’ve removed the St Patrick’s cross from their Union Jack backgrounds…”

    That makes me wonder, if will they change the british flag if Scotland leaves the union and if so, change to what. 

  110. mogabee says:

      It’s easy to see Lord Tanktop is eager to please his bosses. But he’s a terrible actor, too enthusiastic by far!

  111. YesYesYes says:

    This is an interesting comparison – uncanny I’d say – for any impressionable young Scottish Labour things who were feeling dewy-eyed after Ed ‘The Fuhrer’s’ speech at the Nuremberg Rally yesterday:

  112. Wallace Bruce says:

    Didn’t have the pleasure of hearing Johann’s speech, but from the look of the photo I can imagine her saying something along the lines of “See up there. I’m going to sort it oot, so I am. You just leave it to me and it will all be fine. One nation and a’ that.”

  113. Morag says:

    Sometimes I wonder about this stuff.  We think we’re being terribly funny.  I think it’s funny.  I totally fail to see how anyone could fail to be amused by the ineptitude and hypocrisy on show at Manchester.

    But then, if they do the same thing to us in a couple of weeks, will we be laughing?  Maybe.

    Still, is all this going to endear itself to the uncommitted, or to those with a historical fondness for the Labour party as it once was?

  114. YesYesYes says:

    Not sure if you’re replying to me or to Stuart or A.N. Other but, if you were replying to me, here’s my reply to you.
    “This stuff” you refer to is just politics or, better still, it’s just a reflection of life, of human experience.
    “Being funny” is just one of those experiences. As I’m sure you know, it can serve a lot of purposes. It can prick pomposity, it can be incendiary (think of Lenny Bruce or Bill Hicks), it can provoke thought (on the surface, it’s often less threatening/more inviting to neutrals than a po-faced reprimand to someone or something). In fact, the best humour often has serious intentions. That was certainly the spirit of my last post.
    “But then, if they do the same thing to us in a couple of weeks, will we be laughing?”.
    I’d amend your “if” to “when”. I’d also add that “they” have been doing this to “us” for an awful long time now, they’re not about to change with a referendum on the horizon, quite the contrary. I can’t speak for anyone else but I’ll be laughing, for the reasons I cited earlier: it’s politics, it’s life. But then I’m neither a member nor a supporter of the SNP, though even I would have to say that the SNP is infinitely preferable to Scottish Labour.
    “Still, is all this going to endear itself to the uncommitted, or to those with a historical fondness for the Labour party as it once was?”.
    As it happens, I would argue that it is – there’s more than one way to skin a cat and all that, thank goodness. As for endearing ourselves to the uncommitted, one way we might think about this is to compare it to music. The best bands, musicians, are not those who try to write songs that are popular but those who care about what they are doing. For that reason, I prefer listening to Randy Newman, among others, rather than Lulu. To bring this back to the referendum, you might say that, in my eyes, Alex Salmond is closer to Randy Newman and Ed Miliband is closer to Lulu.
    I hope, though, that Stuart will continue to encourage different voices on to this site, the alternative doesn’t bear thinking about.       

  115. Training Day says:


    Morag, in my book a shaft of wit or a beam of ridicule shone on to those who deserve it is worth a thousand earnest attempts to proselytise or a million pages of stats which ‘prove’ the case one way or another.  I wouldn’t underestimate people’s capacity to ridicule the ridiculous, or deliver contempt to the manifestly contemptible.  

  116. MajorBloodnok says:

    As Margo Macdonald said when mention of Alastair Darling’s name got some boos at the indepdence rally, we shouldn’t mock the afflicted.  On the other hand, some of them deserve it, especially those un-principled greasy pole climbers in the ‘Scottish’ Labour party whose most remarkable skill is mendacity.

  117. Morag says:

    I wasn’t referring to anybody in particular, I was just musing about RevStu having said he wants this site to be a friendly place where the uncommitted can come for information.  Then I thought, it I was uncommitted, what would I think of this thread?

    We don’t think much of the “rotund curry-lover” “fat Eck” level of debate elsewhere.  On the other hand, Magrit really does look as if she’s lost her wallies….

  118. blunttrauma says:

    I think Johann is having trouble with her mince.

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