The world's most-read Scottish politics website

Wings Over Scotland

Something less than an answer 191

Posted on May 27, 2015 by

The current Scottish Secretary, David Mundell, on Politics Scotland earlier today:

“I was not convicted”, of course, isn’t quite the same thing as “I didn’t do it”.

Walking the dinosaur 167

Posted on May 27, 2015 by

Many of you won’t have seen this quite extraordinary performance from the Guardian’s assistant editor Michael White on last night’s Scotland Tonight, and you really should.

Read the rest of this entry →

Pouring oil on troubled waters 254

Posted on May 26, 2015 by

“Just go on the radio, play it all with a dead bat, fob them off with some bland waffle and kill the story”, the Lib Dems will have said to Sir Malcolm Bruce this morning.


Read the rest of this entry →

A second chance 255

Posted on May 26, 2015 by

Scottish Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie – a man who was at the heart of the “MemoGate” smear, quoted prominently in almost all the media coverage of the untrue slur against Nicola Sturgeon – has offered the opinion that former Secretary of State for Scotland Alistair Carmichael deserves a “second chance” after admitting being behind the fabricated story and then brazenly lying about it on national TV.

We agree with Mr Rennie.


We believe that Mr Carmichael deserves a second chance to be elected, but this time honestly. The only way that can happen is if he is removed as an MP and given the opportunity to present himself to the electorate again in the light of the revelations. If the voters of Orkney & Shetland weigh up all the facts and conclude that on balance Alistair Carmichael should continue to represent them in Parliament, fair enough.

We therefore draw readers’ attention to the above campaign which has been launched by some of Mr Carmichael’s constituents, which seeks to raise the money required to issue a legal challenge to his election as an MP earlier this month, on the grounds that his narrow 817-vote victory was gained on the basis of lying to voters and covering up that lie until after the election, which may constitute an offence under the Representation of the People Act 1983.

The campaign requires just £6,000 to file the complaint, with the rest of the target sum being set against possible costs. Any unused funds will be donated to charity.

The House Of Liars 162

Posted on May 26, 2015 by

The former Liberal Democrat MP (and also the party’s former Scottish leader, and until just a few weeks ago its UK deputy leader) Sir Malcolm Bruce gave an extraordinary interview to Radio 4’s Today programme this morning about Alistair Carmichael.


The whole thing can be heard here, but the short passage below stood out even in the context of a breathless, furious, scattergun performance that sounded like a man on the edge of a nervous breakdown.

(Today, BBC Radio 4, 26 May 2015)

We’re sure readers will be greatly comforted by the fact that it’s okay for the Secretary of State for Scotland to tell a “brazen lie”, on the grounds that everyone else in the Houses Of Parliament is a liar too, and by the notion that a government minister who’s caught lying to the nation in order to undermine the democratically-elected leader of Scotland is an offence for which the culprit can simply decide their own punishment.

Just don’t forget you ever knew me 80

Posted on May 26, 2015 by


Twisting in the wind 332

Posted on May 25, 2015 by

We thought you should hear this extraordinary interview with Alistair Carmicheal from BBC Radio Orkney this morning.

(Around Orkney, BBC Radio Orkney, 25 May 2015)

The former Scottish Secretary’s excuse for lying on air is a feeble, Hothersall-esque semantic dodge, and his excuse for not resigning is that his years of service as a constituency MP ought to outweigh the fact that a UK government minister abused his office and lied to the public in order to undermine the democratically-elected leader of Scotland and cling on to his own job.

Having now heard the case for the defence, readers can reach their own verdicts.

On public record 550

Posted on May 23, 2015 by

Alistair Carmichael on Channel 4 News a few weeks ago:

Now at least we know why he was struggling to keep a straight face.

Read the rest of this entry →

The naked liar 145

Posted on May 23, 2015 by

I was driving along under a lovely London sky yesterday and heard Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s interview on BBC Radio 4’s PM (package starts at 33.26).


As it progressed, it became clear that Sturgeon was turning in one of the best political performances on a radio programme ever. I say that as a Labour supporter, albeit one who’s belatedly grasping just how good she and her party folk are.

(PM, BBC Radio 4, 22 May 2015)

It’s for you, and then the pundits, to reflect on her words and style. But what I heard moved me across a line of argument in a way I can’t remember being moved by anyone on the radio or telly before.

Read the rest of this entry →

In case you’ve been napping 341

Posted on May 22, 2015 by

…or, like us, out buying Eurovision party snacks:


This is a non-trivial matter. The (at the time) Secretary of State for Scotland seems to have just admitted deliberately and knowingly undermining the democratically-elected First Minister. The report may have been sneakily published on the eve of a Bank Holiday weekend, but we suspect this one won’t have gone away by Tuesday.

Call off the dogs 266

Posted on April 05, 2015 by

Okay, it was a serious breach of the rules, but the culprit’s been punished enough.


Dear God above, we’re not monsters.

Telling good journalism from bad 245

Posted on April 05, 2015 by

As alert readers will already know, this site’s core long-term aim is to eventually render itself redundant, by showing people how to read between the lines, spot what isn’t being said and understand the various tricks that newspapers use in order to get the public to believe things that aren’t true without ever doing anything so crass (and more to the point, legally-actionable) as directly lying.


Today’s papers provide an especially clear-cut example.

Read the rest of this entry →

↑ Top