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Wings Over Scotland

The distant choir

Posted on August 27, 2020 by

During the 2014 indyref, the astonishingly vast imbalance of the mainstream Scottish media was partly compensated by a huge rise in new media, with dozens and dozens of sites filling the gaping chasms where printed and broadcast media would have been in any country with a press worthy of the name at such an exciting time.

The subsequent shrivelling of that presence has been one of the least observed and explored phenomena of the six years since the referendum, and especially since the SNP’s election victory in 2016. The incredibly wide-ranging, mutually-supportive pro-Yes new media is now down to a tiny handful of outlets, most of which are barely read (and most of which would celebrate if the others burned down in a chemical fire).

There are many and varied reasons for this worrying situation, but before we get into those let’s have a quick look at who’s still who and what’s still what.

To get our figures we went to the web traffic analysis site SimilarWeb, which had the greatest breadth of statistics in the Scottish-politics field. But even that only produced numbers for five sites – one of which we didn’t even know existed in its present form, so little had it reached outside the echo chamber.

Every other indy site that’s still producing content on a reasonably regular basis wasn’t being visited enough to register on SimilarWeb’s radar at all – we checked Business For Scotland, Grouse Beater, Munguin’s Republic, NewsnetSource (the replacement for CommonSpace) and The Common Green but none even moved the needle.

(This, incidentally, was also true for every Unionist blogsite we could think of.)

Other once-popular sites and voices, of course, have simply vanished entirely (taking all their work with them) or exist only as historical curios not updated in several years. Arc Of Prosperity, Dateline Scotland, Derek Bateman, Indyref2, Lallands Peat Worrier, To September And Beyond and many more are dead or dormant.

Of the survivors, these are the monthly visits stats*.

Or put another way:

From our own perspective those numbers are mildly astounding, given that we’re now banned from Twitter (which has knocked around 20% off our traffic), that we’ve been on holiday for fully half of the year, and that we’ve spent what feels like most of the rest of the time giving the SNP a kicking.

(Wings has also retained its position among UK-wide politics blogs to a degree we find frankly extraordinary. In June 2017 we were ranked at #6,931 in the UK, well behind Guido Fawkes and Conservative Home. Today we’ve climbed to #3,529 while Guido has slipped to #1,380 and Conservative Home now trails behind Wings at #4,588.)

What’s especially interesting is that the most hackneyed criticism of the new media – that it only got an audience because it was preaching to the converted and telling them what they wanted to hear – is pretty comprehensively disproved by those numbers. We’ve been dealing in some ugly, unpleasant home truths that nobody wanted to hear for most of 2020 – and been bitterly and repeatedly attacked by some of those other sites for it – but we’re still crushing everyone else put together.

(By way of an illustration, Wee Ginger Dug – which we don’t think it’s unfair to say has leant very much more towards the “give them what they want” ethos – has done a lot worse in relative terms since Wings started posting again after our extended break.)

But overall none of this is great news. Years of inaction and worse from the SNP have drained much of the enthusiasm and strength from the Yes movement, and the great grassroots surge of activity that characterised 2011-14 has withered away, with only the occasional march (now scuppered by COVID-19) helping to keep spirits up.

The once-huge and diverse army of campaigners, lacking a focus for its energies, has predictably turned in on itself and split into warring factions, while other parts have just lost heart and wandered back to their normal lives.

It remains to be seen if another referendum would see an outbreak of unity and common purpose, but as the Salmond inquiry rolls on and the battle for the SNP’s soul – between its careerist, devolutionist woke wing and those who are actually focused on independence – shows no sign of abating, it looks like the road ahead has a lot more rocks and potholes in it than smooth tarmac.

As to whether there’ll be anyone to document the journey, should it ever get properly underway again, we can only hope.

*We should note that these figures are the most generous we could find in terms of the other sites, by a dramatic margin. For example, on Wings still recorded 624,000 visits a month (only 7% less than the 670,000 returned by SimilarWeb), but Wee Ginger Dug showed only 101,000 (less than a third of the 309,000 stat from SW), Bella Caledonia got just 61,000 (not 75,000) and the others didn’t even register.

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  1. 27 08 20 22:56

    The distant choir | speymouth

256 to “The distant choir”

  1. P says:

    Thanks Rev
    Keep doing what you do xx

  2. Davy Smith says:

    Obviously I can’t speak for others here, but for me personally, it’s just a case of; “Look, I know what I want and it’s an independent Scotland”. I don’t need to look at what is by and large the same cycle of hope, despair, rage and aspiration every single day any more. I know what box I’ll be putting my cross in of I can ever get home from this miserable dump. All I want is the opportunity to do just that.
    Then my interest will revive as I am in a position to actually get involved in a real and meaningful way with the rebuilding of my country after 313 years and five months of psychological and physical abuse by a foreign colonial power.

  3. Jason Smoothpiece says:

    Sad state of affairs, rather worrying.

    The more sites which are active the better, even if we don’t fully agree with them.

    I think this drop off in traffic and sites is very much to do with folk don’t think anything much is happening.

    Perhaps this will change for the better when the SNP get the show on the road.

    Surely soon.

  4. Fraser Reid says:

    That proves only 1 thing to me….


  5. Dave Llewellyn says:

    Surely Craig Murray should be up there.

  6. Fionan says:

    It is normal for a number of start-ups in a new field to fail in that first year or so, sad though it is – some of these sites were really well done. However few people nowadays have bottomless pockets to fund every new indy venture no matter how deserving or inspiring.And of course many ventures will have suffered from the constant marching up the hill then down again without result or effect – no reward in that, so it is natural for interest to wane.

    What is really interesting is the difference between results for Wings on the one hand, and the other continuing sites on the other hand. I suspect that this is due to more people opening their eyes to the hard truths that Wings has shone a grim light on. Because there is a body of evidence growing to support the Wings position re the Scotgov, SNP and their various failures, people who found it difficult to believe at first are now migrating back to Wings and in doing so, can see that some of the other sites are lacking credibility now, or are becoming aggressive and sulky, not a good look. And as Wings remains the obviously most trustworthy of the new media, and willing to court strong disapproval rather than supply what people want to hear as part of their comfort blankets, of course Wings also gets the most hits from the trolls sent to cause conflict here, and from the childish attention-seekers who dont get off with their spamming anywhere else.

    Thank you for continuing to keep us informed Stuart, you remain one of the most important pillars of the indy movement and you provide far and away the most effective critical analysis of events in the political sphere.

  7. Tannadice Boy says:

    Test the environment Stu. Call for a fundraiser. Count me in. Sturgeon has anaethised the Indy movement. Riding high in the polls why worry?. Gets paid more than the PM and then there is her hubbies pay check. I don’t feel it. I don’t get the buzz. Alternatives to the SNP please. What is happening with AS?.

  8. Tartan Tory says:

    Rev Stu: “while other parts have just lost heart and wandered back to their normal lives.”

    I suspect (hope) most have not lost heart, but like myself, have consigned themselves to the back benches in order to retain some element of sanity.

    The 2014 campaign took its toll on me, both financially and mentally. I have no regrets (except the result), but I could not continue to fight at the front line when there was no prospect of a positive result.

    I still read Wings every day, but have become jaded enough about the current direction of the SNP to have cancelled my membership.

    Normal life isn’t ‘normal’ any longer. I’m ready for the next fight in the full and certain knowledge that it will be the last one, no matter what the outcome is. Until then, I’ll do anything but lose heart.

    Meantime, Stuart, for what it’s worth I thank-you for your continued efforts.

  9. Sharny Dubs says:

    Folks are disheartened by the lack of direction.

    We were so bright and energetic.

    Now we are fading with the dim hope that there will be another party to give us hope or the slim chance that the SNP stalwarts can turn things around.

    All of which WM are very happy about.

    Very depressing.

  10. Derek Rossborough says:

    Yet the BBCScotland Nine News invites Social Media folk that we have never heard of to discuss or give their views on Scottish Politics.

  11. Milady says:

    Arc of Prosperity, which was effectively just one person, was created by my lovely friend Thomas Widmann. He has sadly gone back to Denmark with his Scots European family, basically victims of the Brexit nonsense. Hard decision for him and I miss them all.

  12. Andy Ellis says:

    Just keep doing what you do Stu. I think you’ve found your voice in the past year or so, but – perhaps more importantly – so have many of those who agree with your concerns. We may represent a minority within the broader movement, but I’d venture it is a minority with some clout.

    We may have to accept that the prospect of independence is looking more remote than we’d like.

    If so, we have work to do.

  13. Al-Stuart says:

    Fascinating article Stu.

    Two observations….

    1]. Cheer us up even more by quoting some of the MSM circulation numbers crashing downwards?

    2]. Is this a stand-alone article or are you headed somewhere VERY interesting with this?

    By that I mean are you laying the foundations for something that may help resolve the McWokeist infestation at Bute.

    Perhaps firing the starting pistol for a Scottish Independence List Party?

  14. kapelmeister says:

    With Salmond, whatever his faults, it was a case of letting a thousand flowers bloom.

    Under Sturgeon most of those flowers have withered. It’s been a case of let a thousand loyal careerists bloom.

  15. Lenny Hartley says:

    Our saviours will be the youngsters, not all are Wokes. Going by my family and Those of my acquaintance they are well up for it And impatient for the starting gun to be fired.
    There is going to be a tsunami hitting the Yoons if the SNP ever decide to do what they were elected for.

  16. McDuff says:

    Its all down to the hard work you do Rev, that is why you have the audience you have. You give us the facts as they are unpleasant as that is sometimes but heaven knows what we would do without wings.
    Thanks, never go away.

  17. Jon Musgrave says:

    Many of your articles have been hard for me to read – given my desire for the SNP to lead Scotland to Independence (and they are the only realistic vehicle for this for the foreseeable future). However learning hard truths is better done sooner than later and opening our eyes is good thing for the longer term.
    After independence I, and I am sure many other voters, will pause and then decide who to vote for on more mundane political matters. At present there is only one vehicle to hitch ourselves to, so hold your breath and push again for a vote.

  18. Contrary says:

    I would say the Ferret was a very big stretch, and Peter Bell still posts regularly – whether anyone reads it or not (people comment so some must do) – and you’ve blandly ignored John Robertsons blog talking up Scotland, that got a big rise in numbers, over 100 000 for a couple of months there, but maybe not enough for the average. Seems a bit much including the Ferret, which isn’t exactly pro Indy, and not even mention John’s blog, whatever your opinion is of it.

    But they are remarkable numbers when you’ve been on holiday for so long,,, are they, in fact, all for the cartoons?

  19. Neil In Glasgow says:

    Perhaps more of a thought out loud but I do wonder if it’s a correlation between NS taking the mooth’s advice and concentrating on the day job (of sorts, and pretty much wiping the floor with Johnson) or whether it’s people waking up to the fact that in an independent Scotland you don’t have to vote for the SNP that’s caused the upsurge in support for the cause. The Yoon scare tactics will still scare some folk but they obviously now see it’s perhaps not a case of better the devil you know. With numbers like this though it certainly suggests the latter, and that would be hugely encouraging given that the increase isn’t down to a like (or as before a dislike) of a particular personality. It also shows why it’s so important that while the SNP have a massive role to play that any forthcoming campaign, while staying cordial, emphasises that independence doesn’t necessarily equal NS, or even AS for that matter. Independence means exactly that, in so many ways.

  20. Alistair says:

    There’s a sleeping giant out there. It’s 55% v 45% before the no deal Brexit. When the starting gun goes the Union will be steam roller-ed .

  21. Annie 621 says:

    Keep on keeping on Stu,
    like the bird that flew…X

  22. robertknight says:

    Don’t give up the day job Rev – you’re the only sane voice out there!

  23. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    They had no data for these?


    Prof JWR has been getting a lot of traffic (and doing a great job debunking the BBC, Herald, Scotsman etc.)


  24. holymacmoses says:

    These figures reflect why so many people do follow and read you.
    You’re always interesting to read. Sometimes you frustrate and sometimes you make your readers laugh out loud. As sure as eggs is eggs you make folk think and take a peak round the corners you continually present. You’re a damned good writer.
    Much as your crest says the opposite, I think it must be pretty close to soul-destroying to keep producing such high quality research and writing without getting very much in return outside this medium .
    I hope that you,
    you in partnership with others
    or A N other
    can create a new and enthusiastic vehicle for the people of Scotland to travel on and become an Independent and vibrant country

    You’ve led a dedicated and stressful life for so many years in order to help the ‘faithful’ keep their spirits high and their brains ticking over and there is a bit of me says that you should tell us all to get to …. and get up, get out and find yourself some freedom and write a book all for yourself. To hell with all this altruism:-)
    However I hope that you remain writing here

    You’d get the cash, with a crowd funder – of that I’ve got no doubt ; but you must do something for yourself: I just hope that it entails at least some input on the internet.

    The bastards are indeed grinding a lot of us down

  25. Craig P says:

    You’ve clearly forgot A Thousand Flowers 😀

  26. Dave M says:

    @Craig P: Does that still exist? ???

  27. You should think about writing a book,get the boot into all those shit@bags that have tried to disparage you and Wings over the years.

  28. Tannadice Boy says:

    We are coming to a Crossroads and as always this is a difficult situation. Which way to go?. I will not vote SNP1 or SNP2. Anybody else want my vote. A hopeless protest I know.

  29. tartanfever says:

    Good to see healthy figures for Wings.

    Important point to remember. Unionists aren’t really fighting the Yes movement anymore, they’re fighting Brexit.

    Wait until January when all our fresh food is sitting rotting in a truck on a 40 mile queue on the M20 and you don’t see a fresh lettuce north of Birmingham.

    That is what I believe the SNP are waiting for, the trigger to push Independence support closer to 60%.

    Smart Independence supporters would be filling their twitter timelines and webpages full of these stories, because even K*** H*** falls apart under Brexit scrutiny.

  30. dakk says:

    New unionist followers looking for SNP bad material will certainly have swollen your numbers.

  31. brewsed says:

    I suspect reality is a bit more complicated than just circulation / readership figures, well it has to be given that 55% of the Scottish electorate are, currently, in favour of Scotland becoming an independent country without there having been any campaigning so far this year.

    While, as mentioned further up, the many flowers that have bloomed and withered is not unusual, some have morphed into news aggregator with links on Twitter, some have also ended up as columnists and some have diversified away from blogging but are still active(ish) within the independence movement.

    What has changed, I think, especially currently, is how the msm is now taking the possibility of Scottish Independence seriously with quite a wide range, politically and geographical, carrying articles about either a) how well Nicola Sturgeon is doing ( though the oaf in the fridge doesn’t make that much of a challenge) or b) how that antics of the oaf in the fridge and his pals are only likely to accelerate the inevitability of Scottish Independence, all of which normalises viewers or readers to the concept that is it possible.

    So, yes, a narrowing in the breadth and range of bloggers in support of Scottish Independence is, perhaps dissapointing, the sun will still rise in the east tomorrow.

  32. defo says:

    Says what it does on the tin.
    “Soaring above Scottish politics ”

    Doing something right!

  33. Effijy says:

    Wings has survived by the Rev’s sheer hard work, world class journalism,
    resilience and a belief in a better future for Scotland.

    Long may it flourish.

  34. defo says:

    It may become known as the Scunnered years.

  35. dakk says:

    Very well done all the same.

    When push comes to shove those readership numbers are money in the bank for the indy cause.

  36. dakk says:

    IF push comes to shove.

  37. Willie says:

    Bella Caledonia sadly joined the woke brigade.

    The editor, who I’m sure is well intentioned, is a control freak who can brook no comment on the validity of wokesism. For him support for the one eyed one legged half lesbian heterosexual is his focus. For him that is what drives independence.

    And for that reason his forum, a once reasonable forum, has withered£ on the vine.

  38. Capella says:

    The others will return when there’s a campaign. How often can people repeat “we need to be independent” when there’s no prospect in sight. We have had years of BREXIT and now Covid 19.

    I used to come here for the news and the comments btl which were witty and informative. Now not so much. Still, I am surprised that your readership has kept up. I thought the constant SNP bashing would put people off. Perhaps it has. Perhaps you have a different readership.

  39. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “New unionist followers looking for SNP bad material will certainly have swollen your numbers.”

    Feel free to fuck off if you don’t like it.

  40. Sweep says:

    Intriguing final line, there, Rev…

    I sincerely hope so too.

  41. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Surely Craig Murray should be up there.”

    Craig’s is a world politics site with occasional Scottish/indy stuff. But he comes in between Wings and WGD at a little under 400K.

  42. `In June 2017 we were ranked at #6,931`

    six thousand 931 whats.

  43. Tannadice Boy says:

    You can always bank on Stu to call it as it is.

  44. holymacmoses says:

    ‘dakk says:
    27 August, 2020 at 10:20 pm
    New unionist followers looking for SNP bad material will certainly have swollen your numbers.’

    You don’t have to search for SNP bad behaviour these days dakk. This site tends to require people to have a brain and be more than semi-literate so it would be surprising to find any unionists actually reading one of the Wings pieces. They may be able to cope with a post of the length of the one you’ve just written though:-)

  45. Willie says:

    There are those who come here to carp, to snipe, to adore Queen Nicola. And snipe they may.

    But at the end of the day Wings has the biggest Indy audience by a long way because it a) does support independence and b) provides well researched commentary and analysis. It is not for, the avoidance of doubt, a Woke site.

    But the visitors to the site know that. That’s why they visit. Good stuff Mr Campbell. Keep it up and yes, we’re glad yore back off holiday.

  46. Graf Midgehunter says:

    I used to have a long list of indy sites to read almost every day, in particular before Sept.2014.

    The leadership was there, the enthusiasm, willpower, pulling together. It united and gave a sense of purpose.

    After AS left the bureaucrats of the SNP took over, the gradualists (gradually getting slower) sucked the life blood out of indy. There’s nobody else around to vote for, NS gets the votes because the alternative is unthinkable. Long term that has to have an effect on the YES movement and enthusiasm for all the indy blogs. Less cohesion gives room for squabbles and petty grievences.

    Thank God, Buddha, Allah, spag. monster that the Rev stuck by his guns and pumped out the posts that meant something. Like it or not he broached the topics that most had never heard of or brought light and sense into jumbled themes.

    That’s why he’s still there with a large following and if I’m not wrong, he’s not just having a glass or two of milk with AS or Craig M., somethings a coming… 🙂

  47. Effijy says:

    Excess Deaths in England during the height of the pandemic
    In England don’t seem to count anymore.

    There are less than expected deaths currently with so many away
    From work and travelling less and reduced stress levels from being at work.

  48. Robert Louis says:

    Given that we now know the current SNP leadership has zero actual intention of pushing for, or indeed holding an independence referendum, or even for that matter standing up for Scotland’s sovereignty, this is hardly surprising.

    Al;l that energy, all that do-or-die NEW enthusiasm and fight we all had following 2014 (to the surprise of unionists), has been squandered by Nicola Sturgeon. She is quite frankly a disgrace.

    Scotland is about to be dragged out of the EU wholly against its wishes, and an SNP Scottish government sits on its hands, muttering about ‘gold standards’, and new mandates.

    It is hard to keep going when you know that the people in whom we all put our trust have utterly ytterly betrayed each and every one of us. The Murrells will go off after a few years with their lovely pensions and bulging bank balances, but ordinary Scots, the ones who trusted them, will not.

    We are all about to witness the single most wanton destructive act by England against Scotland, since the cursed treaty of ‘union’ was signed. I’m sad to say it, but the SNP are finished. I genuinely think they are in for one almighty shock in May next year – that is, if the Scots parliament has not been shut by London by then.

    As Alex Salmond often says, ‘The dream shall never die’, and that is true, but our chances of liberating Scotland from Engand’s vice -like talons, are slowly slipping away.

    If ever Scotland needed a real leader, it is now. Meanwhile, Nicola Sturgeon still witters on about May 2021. That will be too late.

  49. Robert Louis says:

    As regards a new list party, I like to remember a quotation used by Alex Salmond.

    ‘He either fears his fates too much,
    or his deserts are small,
    That dares not put it to the touch,
    to win or lose it all.’

    James Graham, 1st Marquis of Montrose.

    We can but hope…

  50. Terry says:

    There are stirrings. First of all the 55% that now support independence believe the SNP is for independence. The 55% want independence. Most of them are oblivious as to what is going on In the SNP and at Murrell towers. Maybe this is a good thing for the wider public at the mo.

    Meantime in SNP branches up and down Scotland (where the direction of the SNP matters – or so you would hope) there is uproar about the NEC, the blocking of Joanna Cherry and the lack of direction about the road to independence. There’s a fight back going on and fair play to this site for waking people up quicker than they would have been. You’ve sounded the alarm before it was too late. In addition members, particularly but not exclusively women, are raging about the GRA. As for the hate crime – most think it’s a bad joke and are outraged about it. I expect the October conference will be interesting.

    In 2014 one of the Catalan activists remarked positively on the power of the SNP in advance of his visit. At the end of the visit he said, “But you haven’t got a movement.” Well we have now. Yes, there are frustrations, yes, there is a lack of direction, yes – sometimes folk are pissed off and confused about what is going on re the power struggle in the SNP and what that means for independence. But they are getting out there, networking, putting on stalls. They say, “we are all parties and none”. They are also informed. And where does that information come from? Primarily Wings. Thank you.

  51. Dave Beveridge says:

    I still have the domain and am still as solidly Yes as ever. The site was basically a piss-take of some of the wacky nonsense in the MSM. However, to get material for it I’d have to visit their sites and give them the benefit of a click and I’m b*ggered if I’m going to do that. Anyway, have you seen anything to laugh at in the last 6 years? Cos I sure as **** haven’t.

    Quite proud that I bagged the domain after the Scottish Tories let it lapse and there was still a link to it from the Tory party main front page! Gave me a giggle that anyone clicking on it would go to a spoof site ripping the p*ss out them. It was a good few months before they twigged! 🙂

  52. cynicalHighlander says:

    @Dave Beveridge


    Keep going rev funds are there when asked for.

  53. Polly says:

    Your writing on politics has placed you exactly where you should be, top of the heap. I came to reading Wings regularly only this year – because I saw the attacks on you and your twitter ban after being targeted by snivelling little nobodies within SNP for speaking out on GRA – I came to reading you when you were taking a break – yet you did more work, and did it better, than anyone else during that time. I believe I won’t be the only one brought here initially because of that, nor the only one who keeps reading because of your output. You are needed and will be needed even after independence.

    I read others on occasion too. Bella, despite some good articles on culture is often ruined for me with sloppy errors in spelling/grammar. A decent article recently on the Basse Yutz Flagons where he couldn’t even spell MacGregor correctly despite linking to the bbc site where it was correct is just abysmal in someone calling themselves an editor on their LinkedIn. You show yourself far more professional than him and would never make that error. Scotgoespop is often decent but seems to skim along the surface most times, to me his writing lacks the power and force needed to really drive a point home and no one could accuse you of that failing. Weegingerdug, though listening to him speak on tv easily saw he was articulate in getting his point over, but in writing it comes across rather tea table chat, a cozy natter with friends. From what others’ say he might not have always been so amenable, but he is now, and for political writing that coziness might bring friends but fails to confront important issues.

    As I said once before I gravitated here because this is the real heart of the fight for independence. I know now why you always had such support. I came here seeing what happened to you when you spoke on GRA but I stayed because of your uncompromising honesty, your political insight, your stubborn bloody-mindedness and your gift in writing.

  54. Robert Graham says:

    Aye great great great grandad was right if cant stomach the loss get out of the game you are just taking someone else’s place

    He who dares wins .the rest are just spectators listening Pete ?

    Only so many times you can say the same things over and over again you could almost rewind to 2014 same stuff being discussed only difference was at least we all had some Hope and faith in our political representatives back then


  55. Terry says:

    Well said polly. 100% correct. Plus I think in the 7 years I’ve read Wings I don’t think I’ve seen a single spelling or grammatical mistake.

  56. Stu hutch says:

    Quite a lot of Indie movement are now on video blogs that were not about in need for a good few indie people to log on and read stuff as much as before.look at indielive radio there was nothing like that 6 years ago.we are still all here just looking at a more varied indy media.wos still here because of stu.hoping the snp would change a bit so you could get behind them again and do what you do best

  57. Tannadice Boy says:

    Stu hutch says
    Perhaps but a lot of the older guys like me are not on these forums and will not be going forward. The argument needs to be won on the streets and that’s democratically not through violence. I think we have gone back. I don’t feel the buzz. We have lost the banter, we have lost the initiative.

  58. Gerry Parker says:

    Like Tartan Tory I’m still here Stu, still willing to give anything I can to get independence for Scotland. There are many others like us, just getting on with our day jobs meantime.

  59. Stu hutch says:

    I honestly think once the latest alex salmond trial is over.nicola will be found not proven..alex will lead a unified list party.joanne cherry will be back in court to end the treaty of union.the polls will go up.boris will have one big f**cup to do with trade deals.then we will get the buzz back.

  60. Paul D says:

    Fascinating traffic stats and validation of the consistently high quality that Wings delivers. The impact of the Rev not being on Twitter is interesting, as that’s how I used to find out about new articles. Friends of Wings is great, but it is easy to miss posts in a crowded timeline. I find the Wings email notifications work brilliantly, so it may be worth reminding readers or putting a ‘register to receive notifications of new articles’ button in a prominent position on the site. I didn’t even know this functionality existed until I read the post at I spoke with a fan of the site only yesterday, who admitted his readership had lapsed and who didn’t know he could receive email notifications. Keep up the good work.

  61. Averaging around 300 000 over last few months.

    Why not included?

  62. Contrary: ‘Over 100 000 for a couple of months there’


  63. In a free trial, I think SimilarWeb, the traffic analysis site, only lets you compare 5 sites. Why was TuS not chosen?

  64. Tartanpigsy says:

    The demise of NewsnetScotland is the one that saddens me most.
    It had a pivotal role pre indyref1. Having known ‘Online Ed’ since the first BBC demo in may 2012 and fully understanding why it was passed on to Derek Bateman, seemingly safe and tbh ideal hands it has slipped slowly into obscurity.
    It was a very different site to Wings but equally hard hitting and rapier like in its analysis.
    Post Indyref1 the SNP briefly proposed a supposed equivalent site, The Scottish Standard but then did the square route of fuck all with it.
    An early sign I suppose of what’s followed since.

  65. twathater says:

    @ Stu hutch 12.25am when you say that you think nicola will be found not proven , is that not proven to have INSISTED that the rules include former ministers that wm advised against , or is it that she will be found not proven for ONLY pursuing Alex Salmond when the rules were for ALL former ministers who had allegations or complaints made against them irrespective of party

    It really frustrates me that people are SO desperate to delude themselves in believing that NS is NOT who they think she is that they will do or say anything EXCEPT look at the evidence which presents the contrary

    If NS came up to them and smashed an iron bar into their skull they would tell the police it was a mistake as Nicola said she thought she saw a fly on my head and was ONLY trying to get it to move away

  66. susan says:

    Keep up the good work Stu; I may come off my phone feeling angry and frustrated after reading your articles but I prefer to read the truth, no matter its affect on me.

    Great post Polly. I have been reading this site (on my phone) since before the indyref though I didn’t post for many years.

  67. twathater says:

    In relation to online indy media may I thank you and others for a HARD sometimes (mostly) THANKLESS task , in particular your dedication in exposing ALL parties corruption and lies irrespective of personal cost and attacks

    Just think if the SNP had utilised this media for Scotland’s enlightenment and EXPOSURE of WM’s brutal subjugation of Scots instead of treating them as lepers we may have stirred more people into action and belief

    Barrhead Boy who was a SNP member and long term activist has raised this issue on a number of occasions but has been ignored by the high and mighty

    I think that NS would vehemently oppose the idea as I think she is a control freak and believes that she owns the independence movement and as can be seen she is LOATH to release any part or idea of independence

  68. mr thms says:

    John Robertson @ 1:10 am

    “Averaging around 300 000 over last few months.”

    Congratulations. A meteoric rise and an incredible achievement.

    I don’t do twitter or Facebook. I do do What’s App and I am frequently sending links to your many interesting articles to my friends and relatives to read.

  69. Breeks says:

    The wolf that grows is the wolf you feed, and under Nicola Sturgeon’s SNP the good wolves of the YES movement have been on starvation rations.

    It isn’t just a metaphor. The burgeoning new media of 2014 needed support, not just financial, but structural support, recognition and encouragement from our leadership, and a coordinated effort to raise it’s public profile and accessibility. It could have, and should have, been given regular scoops and exclusive information so that a Scottish media platform became a “go-to” resource in the media landscape.

    What have we had? Bread and water for sustenance and SNP mouthpieces slagging off the new media.

    Just think where we would be without Wings, and without the likes of Phantom Power and Independence Live.

    Belatedly, there has been SNP endorsement of Skotia media. It’s a sign of the times that my first instinct was to examine this endorsement for any Wokist connections, but I was also puzzled why Skotia were getting accolades and acknowledgement which Phantom Power had done more to earn. Please don’t interpret that as criticism or hostility towards Skotia, I embrace all Scottish media, but I was curious why Skotia was being elevated to a higher level of recognition. Compared to Phantom Power’s output, Skotia seems a little obscure.

    In 2014, the YES movement felt like a team, and the SNP was part of that team. Post 2015 and coming under new management, Scotland’s new media has been as unmentionable to the SNP as Scottish Independence itself.

    Onto something more positive however…

    Somebody trying to stand up to protect Scotland’s Constitution and rights? Of course it’s Joanna Cherry. Persona non grata to the SNP’s Wokist NEC. That alone should be due cause for the NEC to stand down or be sacked. Shame on them. Imbeciles.

    Joanna Cherry is the good wolf, perhaps the only one, which the whole of Scotland needs to be feeding right now, because she’ll grow to become the big bad wolf that huffs and puffs and blows down the rotten Parliament of Westminster. Nobody else in the SNP is going to do it.

    Just imagine if this remarkable lady was in charge, and backed by a team of worthy lieutenants who were all committed to seeing Scottish Independence delivered, rather than a motley crew of conniving Wokist loose cannons who’d burn down the house in a petulant rage if the spoiled brats feel slighted, and don’t give a sideways fk about Scottish Independence.

    It depresses me no end that the conversation now seems to be candidate selection for the 2021 Scottish Elections. The end of the transition period in December and the onset of aggressive deregulation is already being dismissed as a non-event. I know, it’s just another dereliction of Scotland’s interests by Scotland’s Government, and we’ve grown somewhat accustomed to those, but this event marks the end of our fingertips grip on Europe. It is the end.

    All my hopes now frankly rest with the Salmond Inquiry not being the whitewash I fear it’s going to be, but proving adequate to remove Sturgeon from her position as wolf-starver in chief, and timely new management for the SNP to sweep out the weirdos who seem poised to fill the shoes of the dozen or so retirees. Who would there left to supply the sanity? The cretins who stitched up Joanna Cherry? God help us.

    I’m not saying that will make the SNP unelectable, but it will be something I can’t vote for. It’s a bad wolf we should not feed.

  70. Rm says:

    If the Scottish Government still pushes to stay in Europe before January the 55 percent would rise to over 65 percent, why can’t they go for it, NS can keep the country running through the virus situation which is good but why can’t she have a separate group going for ending this unfair union, years ago if you were a member of the SNP most were patriots where no money was involved, now it’s a career, wages, pensions not the same drive with the people running the SNP but still plenty drive for people voting for them, no drive from the people running the SNP party that’s the problem.

  71. Peter A Bell says:

    While obviously not enjoying anything like the traffic for Wings Over Scotland I’d like Stu and his readers to know that my blog at is still going. Apart from a break of a few weeks at the beginning of last year it has been going pretty much constantly since 2011 with at least three new articles every week – which I consider the minimum requirement for an active site.

    Other than the premature obituary I found Stu’s article both fascinating and cause for even more disappointment. As if we haven’t had enough of that lately from our friends in a certain political party. My only criticism – and I offer it in a spirit of comradeship – would the air of competitiveness that surfaces on occasion. I know it’s difficult to deal with such comparisons without it coming across as a contest. I know too that some people have a competitive spirit that is too strong to be totally suppressed or concealed. I sense Stu may be one such person. Although I must add that I may be particularly inclined to notice that competitive spirit in others as I myself have as close to none as makes no effective difference. That’s why I’ve never been good at, or very interested in, team sports.

    Having offered this small criticism it would be unfair not to acknowledge that, as he demonstrates in his rather poignant description of the way it used to be with the Yes movement, Stu is perfectly well aware that it is not a competition. Or it shouldn’t be. To whatever extent it has become one this is to be deplored and regretted. We really ought to be making more effort to recapture some of the spirit which infused the Yes movement in those early days. Obviously, we can’t turn back the tide of time. Things are different now. (Which may win the prize for understatement of the year but, of course, I don’t care because I have no competitive spirit.)

    The expression “we live in a different world” has rarely been so absolutely apt. It may be stating the obvious to say that the Yes movement has not adapted well to this new environment. The decline of our online presence is but one aspect of this failure. Stu has dealt with some of the explanations in his article. But I would add that perhaps we haven’t been supportive enough. The spirit of mutuality has been, if not entirely lost, then diminished severely.

    The Yes movement needs to be more supportive of its online journalists. Self-evidently, I have to declare an interest here. And I don’t mean to be ungracious towards the people who have given me support and encouragement (and money) over what must be nearly a decade. But the Yes movement as a whole could probably show more appreciation to those of us who strive to contribute to Scotland’s cause with our words.

    Speaking for myself, I do not aspire to the success of Wings Over Scotland. Such success, as I’m sure Stu will agree, comes at a cost. As well as the rewards there is the responsibility. The kudos has to be earned. It is earned by maintaining high standards in all areas – but particularly in the content. That is the key to the success of Wings Over Scotland. With a modesty that I’m pretty certain must be feigned, Stu fails to recognise that the success of Wings Over Scotland is mainly down to the fact that he is doing excellent work. It is not idle flattery to say that vanishingly few people are doing the kind of forensic journalism that is Stu’s forte. And, I venture, none are doing it so consistently well.

    It is (was?) a long-standing ‘tradition’ within my circle of friends that anybody afflicted with a terminal illness be awarded the very special identifier – appended to their given name or nickname – ‘No Deid Yet’. As in No Deid Yet Sandy, who sadly succumbed to cancer some years ago. Most of you reading this will recognise the black humour and tender harshness that are essential components of Scottish banter. Well! Ah’m No Deid Yet, Stu. Neither is my wee blog. I hasten to add that this does imply that I’m suffering from any terminal condition. Only that I’m still an active campaigner for the restoration of Scotland’s independence. Still proud to be part of the Yes movement. Still offering my commentary and reflections online. And intending to do so for as long as it takes.

  72. Tatu3 says:

    “This site tends to require people to have a brain and be more than semi-literate so it would be surprising to find any unionists actually reading one of the Wings pieces.”

    The above was posted further up thread and made me laugh. For about a year now this site has been over run with unionists. Wings visitor numbers may still be high, but that’s because it is now being read, in the main, by anti independence supporters.

    And “semi literate” an even bigger laugh. Most are pure vitriol against the ONLY party and it’s leader, who will get Scotland back it’s independence.

    I haven’t visited this site in ages, but read a comment on an ACTUAL pro Indy site that mentioned just how low Mr Campbell had gone and they were right.

    Mr Campbell is laughing all the way to the bank, taking your (any genuine independence supporters, of which there are very few on here these days, hard earned) money and squirrelling it away. The majority of donations to wings comes from the £5 million spent by Boris to “save the union”.

    There are none so blind as those who will not see…

  73. Big Jock says:

    Whenever anything major is happening in the MSM. My default is to check it out on Wings , for the truth.

    That’s why Wings always does so well. Sure there are other blogs, and some of them very good. But none of them cut straight to the truth so profoundly.

    To me some bloggers are too afraid of what they call:”Splitting the movement”. Hence they end up sounding like cheer leaders for the SNP ” nodding heads”.

    The SNP deserve a kicking right now. If we don’t do it then they will continue on this road to nowhere.

  74. Sharny Dubs says:

    Breeks @6:29

    Words of hope, any ideas how we might starve the bad wolf and feed the good? Other than just waiting for events to unfold?

  75. Big Jock says:

    Tatu = Troll!

  76. Big Jock says:

    RM- The SG should refuse to co-operate with WM on any matters. If and when we are dragged out of the EU and the power grab occurs.

    We are now seeing the “boiled frog phenomenon” Slowly eroding powers while we sit in the pot oblivious. They are now attacking our legal system. Something specifically protected under article 19 of the Union.

    To me this is their plan. Slowly dismantling something, means that the owners sometimes notice , don’t notice or just accept it in small increments.

  77. Breeks says:

    Peter A Bell says:
    28 August, 2020 at 6:56 am

    While obviously not enjoying anything like the traffic for Wings Over Scotland I’d like Stu and his readers to know that my blog at is still going…

    I’m glad it is still going too,.. but in fairness to Rev Stu, didn’t you announce you were hanging up your keyboard a few months ago? No barb in the comment, I’m delighted you reconsidered. 😉

  78. Dan Watt says:

    Listen Stu, here’s the deal.

    Wings is the absolute gold standard when it comes to disecting unionist shitfuckery in the MSM. That is why we come here. Even in the last while, where there has been a higher chance of you being highly critical of the SNP – which isn’t your fault, we have still been coming in the hope that another piece of shit article by some unionist nonce has been ripped to shreads.

    In other words, Wings, despite the naughty language some find oh-so-hard to deal with, is the premier source of facts for the Yes movement. The black/blue books prove this by themselves. Laying out the facts for us, disecting unionist lies and all the mythbusting you do is what made wings what it is. KEEP it the FUCK GOING.

    The other blogs you mention are good in their own way, but like you, have their downsides as well. Many of them are at times so far over to the left, that woke doesn’t cover it – this leads to unrealistic bleating about some policy or other that no electable government would ever propose. It isn’t what we need, the movement needs hope yes, but it also needs to ground itself in reality – you offer this in spades.

    If Nicola Sturgeon ever gets round to organising another referendum for us, maybe things will pick up for you and the other blogs? I’ll give them a wee read now and then, but none of them lay things out quite as well as you do, in my eyes.

  79. Breeks says:

    Sharny Dubs says:
    28 August, 2020 at 8:02 am

    Breeks @6:29

    Words of hope, any ideas how we might starve the bad wolf and feed the good? Other than just waiting for events to unfold?

    A little of both… I don’t seen anything happening until the Alex Salmond Inquiry comes to the boil, so we very much do need to wait and see how that unfolds, and IF Nicola Sturgeon comes unstuck, then there will be a mad rush… I hope.

    The only ’emergency’ route to anything inside four months would have to be Constitutional I think, some kind of interdict which denounces Brexit as a violation of Scotland’s sovereign Constitution. Westminster might ignore that, but I firmly believe the EU would be obliged to respect a part of the Brexit process being declared unlawful.

    I would like that eleventh hour appeal for Scottish Sovereignty to be recognised to take the form of an ultimatum to Westminster, a very belated Scottish Constitutional backstop which should have been pursued in parrallel with the Irish Backstop… “If you do not recognise Scotland’s democratic mandate and sovereign prerogative to say no to Brexit, then the refusal will be deemed to breach the Treaty of Union and the Treaty of Union which created the United Kingdom will be an at end.

    I would then hope for some nifty footwork in conjunction with Europe to revisit the holding pen status first mooted way back in 2016 merely hours after the Brexit result was declared. Scotland would not become an automatic EU member, but put into a transitional holden pen status pending such fast tracked negotiations.

    Now is the time… before the Trade talk collapse, and the issue of Scotland hhas the importance to change the game. The UK which thinks it can brave a No-Deal exit from Europe will cease to be a UK with Scotland’s Oceans, balance of trade and Oil resources, and become England and Wales without Scotland’s resources, and very much more inclined to negotiate a deal with Europe, or else they really are in a tailspin.

    A trade deal with Europe by the way, would be a Trade Deal with Scotland as an EU member… something England would very definitely require to keep the lights on and feed itself.

    The iron is hot…

  80. Dan Watt says:

    I’d also like to quickly say that you aren’t the only indy blogger that has “changed tack” lately, so to speak. Some of them are borderline unreadable right now and some went that way very quickly after we lost. The bitter is strong with some people.

  81. Peter A Bell says:


    I suffer the same frustration as every other Yes activist. Sometimes, that frustration gets the better of me. Like many bloggers, I need a wee break occasionally. I try to avoid the theatrical social media flounce – David Torrance was a renowned exponent – but experience has taught me that it’s better to give notice that you’re ‘going dark’. Not to do so leaves a void that is all but instantly filled with rumour and conspiracy theories. While my inbox overflows with enquiries. Mostly, I’m thankful to say, of the gracious variety. Although I was once told that the internet was better without me. Which came as something of a surprise as I hadn’t realised I’d made quite such an impact.

    Persistence! Perseverance! Tenacity! Dogged determination! Qualities we all must strive to develop in, to use a phrase I’ve come to detest, ‘these trying times’. Like there’s any other kind!

  82. `There are none so blind as those who will not see…`

    yer right there chump.

  83. Patsy Millar says:

    Well, as one of the ‘few’ genuine independence supporters here I am again, saying well done to Stu with one caveat. No matter how many times I have ticked the box for ‘Notify me of new posts by email’ I have never been notified. I used to go straight to the blog from Twitter which for obvious reasons I can’t do now, but instead have to go to the blog using the search bar in Firefox. I had a look at the link telling you how to get the notifications and I’m sure I’m doing exactly what it said. It’s the one email I’d be really pleased to receive apart from friends so yes, this is really a begging letter!

  84. K.A.Mylchreest says:

    @ Breeks

    That would certainly be the best, perhaps the only, viable defense against the Boiled Frog Scenario. Some clear limits, red lines, need to be set beyond which “they shall not pass” without triggering a firm reaction from Scotland, effectively marking the end of the Union.

  85. Beaker says:

    I think part of the reason is that Wings posts a lot of varied articles, and is not afraid to criticise where appropriate. It also allows contributions from different people.

    Likewise, the articles are not tailored to fit in to a core audience to keep them happy, rather they are informative and allow people to form their own opinions – as can be seen by some of the comments. This site encourages debate. Sometimes heated, but nonetheless welcome.

    Twitter has taken up a fair bit of traffic, partly because it is easy to get something out there, and it’s simple enough for the most media-illiterate politician. It does have it’s downsides, in that one badly worded tweet can screw up a career.

    I like Wings because it is balanced. It’s pro-indy but it doesn’t allow itself to be dazzled by the SNP (or anyone else come to that). And it will stand up for those it feels are being unfairly targetted, even if they totally disagree with them on other issues. That is a mature approach to journalism, something rarely seen elsewhere.

  86. Contrary says:

    Richard Murphy, to my mind, does more to promote the case for independence than many Indy bloggers are doing these days – each to their own of course, but if you want to count ‘usefulness’ as a factor, getting some real information out there and remembering the goal is a good way of going about it. Richard isn’t pulling any punches in this latest article – Scotland needs to stop subsidising London, (and it’s up to us to find a way to make it stop)

  87. Stan Broadwood says:

    Channel hopping between the three major News broadcasters of Sky News, BBC and ITV and can’t find any news relating to Scotland Wales or N Ireland.

    All english—everything.

    All political news is english.
    All schools news has to do with England.
    All sport has to do with england.
    All outside broadcasts are from england.
    All personal stories are about english people.

    Every bit of News that is fed into your living rooms is about england.

    And regarding the BBC licence fee (which I refuse to pay), the BBC still insist you pay it, or they will send you to jail.

    Why should we have to sit and be fed news and information from a foreign country and be forced to pay for that privilege?

    Why isn’t the Scottish Government being more vocal about this?

    The SNP have been in government in Scotland for years and yet we are still no further forward regarding rebuttals and being our voice, to stand up to the english based media.

    I wonder if the english would accept their News bulletins being broadcast from Paris, and all information being given to them was about French politics, French Sport, French schools, French outside broadcasts?

    I bet you it wouldn’t last the day.

    The outcry would be tremendous and the english would not accept such conditions.

    But the english want the Scots, Welsh and N Irish to accept the exact same conditions every day of the week.

    And the sad thing is—we do accept it.

  88. Bob Mack says:

    Possibly the reason these sites are failing is due to the fact that many folk believe Independence is no longer just around the corner as it seemed to be only a few years ago.

    The SNP seem to be inert on the issue but that may just be my personal viewpoint. There certainly are two main camps on Indy, possibly three.

    1.The SNP will prevail.
    2.The SNP are delaying Indy.
    3.Those becoming apathetic to when and how.

    I’m definitely not in 1.

  89. Andrew Morton says:

    Interesting. I’ve found over the years since 2014 that I only found six blogs with anything much worth reading and they were:

    Wee Ginger Dug
    Scot Goes Pop
    Craig Murray
    Derek Bateman
    Lallands Peat Worrier

    The last two have disappeared, Derek presumably because of his ill health and Andrew Tickell because he has other platforms. I suspect that other blogs are failing because, frankly, they have little to say that is of interest to the reader. How often do you want to read that the Union is bad and indy is good? If people have something that is worth reading then readers will read it.

  90. Ottomanboi says:

    “One is conscious of no brave and noble earnestness in it, of no generalized passion for intellectual and spiritual adventure, of no organized determination to think things out. What is there is a highly self-conscious and insipid correctness, a bloodless respectability, submergence of matter in manner–in brief, what is there is the feeble, uninspiring quality of German painting and English music”.
    [H. L. Mencken. American journalist, essayist, satirist and cultural critic]

    The referent might well have been Scotland’s lack-lustre National party.

  91. Willie says:

    Yes, I agree with so many of the commentators who pay tribute to Wings as being the gold standard Indy go to site. The numbers certainly tell us that with nothing else coming close.

    But as Peter A Bell says there are other sites and he himself maintains a good effort on providing a commentary.

    But here is a comment that I think needs to be made. Wings, like other Indy sites are generally funded by individuals who have decided that they like what they see. You cannot run a regular well researched blog without support. But where recently have the SNP government just given £3m of our money in media support. Yes, for the alert they gave it to the MSM who viciously fight against independence.

    Dying on their feet these dinosaurs owned by foreign corporates, or wealthy individuals, their hostile position will never change. So why the donation.

    I’d most certainly be interested to learn why this was so. And in the meantime I’ll continue to secure my political commentary and we’ll researched opinion from Wings, and from other blogs. They are after all there because people want to read them, trust them.

    Aside of that, there’s a daily commentary called Yours For Scotland, a blog by Iain Lawson that has just recently arrived on the scene. Going now only a couple of weeks it has already attracted thousands of readers, which in the circumstances is absolutely excellent from a standing start. Certainly worth giving it a try. Iain makes some very good commentary, which I think would very much suit Wings readers tastes.

  92. Stoker says:

    Breeks wrote on 28 August, 2020 at 6:29 am

    “The burgeoning new media of 2014 needed support, not just financial, but structural support, recognition and encouragement from our leadership, and a coordinated effort to raise it’s public profile and accessibility. It could have, and should have, been given regular scoops and exclusive information so that a Scottish media platform became a “go-to” resource in the media landscape. What have we had? Bread and water for sustenance and SNP mouthpieces slagging off the new media.”

    You forgot the £3 million handout of our money she gave to the BUM rags. Those very same Britnat BUM rags that played no small part in the destruction of our 2014IndyRef. The very same BUM rags she promotes on a daily basis. £3 million to that shower of shite & not even so much as a glance in the direction of the grassroots.

  93. Stan Broadwood says:

    I have came to the stunning conclusion that the SNP are shite.

    They are just treading water.

    I bet Nicola Sturgeon would never have introduced free prescriptions, free tuition, free bridge tolls, or free anything.

    She is a Tartan Tory and would have followed england’s policies regarding health, education and transport.

    So we have a lot to thank Alex Salmond for.

    This is evident in her desire for Independence, there is none.

    The Tartan Tory Sturgeon needs moved on.

    She is a Dud.

  94. Dave M says:

    Tatu: it’s a shame that you don’t like the fact that Wings criticises the SNP. I’d far prefer to read a site which casts a critical eye where it is needed than one which writes uncritical puff pieces when considering the Yes side. Why?

    Because we need to be grown up enough to ask questions of ourselves and not blindly go along with a party which has: a) done more to deny England its own democratic choice in the last four years than advance the cause of Scotland’s independent future, and b) seems intent on taking (devolved) Scotland down a path of bizarre, authoritarian, and science-denying social policies.

    If the SNP is the “only party which can bring about independence”, then we MUST question their current motives and lack of action on the country’s constitutional future. (We should also question why no other serious party exists which supports independence. A party having a captive electorate is not good for democracy – particularly since we haven’t apparently learned the lesson of what happened to Labour.)

    Personally, as much as I want independence , I completely disagree with the SNP’s policy direction at the moment, so I won’t be voting for them and I certainly won’t be made to feel that I owe them my vote. The reverse is true: they need to demonstrate to me why I should lend my vote to them. My only current option is to spoil my ballot or not vote at all.

    Further, this isn’t Tsarist Russia. We are allowed to criticise the government. I don’t trust anyone who feels that they shouldn’t, even if it purports to support independence.

  95. G H Graham says:

    Two points here that I think are worth considering: first is Stu Campbell’s brutal forensic analysis & honesty.

    It is frequently an unpleasant read in the same way that a victim’s autopsy report might be accidentally discovered by a relative. And as your instincts implore you to close the file, there’s a part of your brain that overrides this impulse because you want to know the truth, even when it contradicts every hope, aspiration & belief you hold.

    So desperate are some to achieve independence, they are willing to set aside the obvious flaws in our politicians, the self preservation ethos of the establishment & the corrupt mechanisms of state.

    I am of course referring to Sturgeon’s conjuring trick of carrot dangling & distractions which she uses to good effect. And of course, the disturbing collusion by her inner circle of acolytes to retrospectively create a witch hunt, thankfully dismissed by a jury in the High Court in Edinburgh. But there remains a deeply worrying culture in the Justice Department which so far, no one seems to want to admit to, never mind examine or even rectify.

    Wings Over Scotland dares to question all of this while the main stream media willfully chooses to ignore the obvious in exchange for salacious, puerile gossip in an attempt to stem the ongoing collapse in its audience. That the scalp of Salmond is offered up as a consolation prize, is considered by unionists as a bonus.

    The trust we have in politicians has rarely been lower yet the main stream media continues to pick sides despite glaring contradictions & flat out lies. In essence it doesn’t actually appear to seek the truth anymore (maybe it never did but its so much more obvious now thanks to social media) & because we all have the ability to reply back to editors and journalists that was impossible just 20 years ago, we are delighted to find a channel like Wings that speaks on our behalf against that orthodox & unethical media establishment.

    My second point is that Alex Cole-Hamilton is still the thickest politician in Scotland. And there’s no sign of anyone beating him any time soon. I know, some of you are already shouting, “Annie Wells! Annie Wells!”. The problem for Annie is that she’s too stupid to even recognise the depth of her own stupidity. I think it’s fair to say that Cole-Hamilton at least knows he’s a dick. That alone is worth a few extra brownie points.

  96. Effijy says:

    I know that any regular visitors here will be aware of
    The absurdity of Tatu’s post above.

    Interesting name as it’s a former Russian duo who
    Were a one hit wonder.

    You don’t suppose Boris has asked his Russian Money laundering guests
    To help troll the Rev.

    The Rev has been earning less than the average UK wage from this site.
    Fit that he is persecuted, had his home raided and personal belongings

    A Joke for a Judge has awarded very substantial costs for a joke that posed as a
    Labour leading politician who knows not what she says.

    Now Tati, if you seen the Rev’s job above advertised, would you send in your CV?

    Get yourself a large vodka and find another site to be stupid in.

  97. The Isolator says:

    Dave M @ 9.37

    “Personally, as much as I want independence , I completely disagree with the SNP’s policy direction at the moment, so I won’t be voting for them and I certainly won’t be made to feel that I owe them my vote.”

    So tell us Dave are you going to vote at next year’s election at all and if so who?

    As for Nicola Sturgeon it was quite obvious she was determined to put Milliband into No 10 ,and her performance during 2017 GE was distinctly lacklustre as was the whole SNP campaign.Very disappointing, but it has been obvious since 2015 that the movers and shakers within the SNP were being placed further and further up the policy tree by Sturgeon herself.She is a Labourite and no mistake.

    Change will come but the Purge needs to be brutal and quick.

    I’ll still be voting SNP 1 and list party 2 come next year unless the Purge has already taken place.

  98. Vivian O'Blivion says:

    It’s not just online that bandwidth has been purposefully reduced. Remember the early election campaigns of devolution? The lampposts festooned with party posters. Minor parties that were denied MSM coverage but nonetheless achieved representation at Holyrood. Regardless of YOUR opinion of any individual party’s platform, they are entitled to their position and a vehicle by which to proclaim it. That’s democracy.
    According to this article in the Ferret, the mania for banning political posters on council “street furniture” began in 2010.
    Many if not most of these councils have at the least, SNP sharing power. This is a blatant, “corporatist” drive to reduce the bandwidth of democracy.
    If political posters being left in place well after an election were a problem, the solution would be to require the parties to post a bond through their election agent. If the posters were not removed after a fortnight, the bond could be seized by the council as a off set against council workers removing the posters.

  99. Ronald Fraser says:

    Hopefully we will have a new leader of the SNP by the beginning of next year.

    But that doesn’t mean we give our two votes to the SNP at next year’s Hollyrood election.

    It will still make good sense to vote SNP 1 and a new list Party 2.

    The more Indy parties we have in Holyrood the better.

  100. Beaker says:

    @Effijy says:
    28 August, 2020 at 9:58 am
    “Interesting name as it’s a former Russian duo who
    Were a one hit wonder.”

    They also appeal to the woke brigade. Perhaps that also influenced the handle…

    Saying that, I do like the song.

  101. Breeks says:

    All those people commenting that Wings has been ‘brutal’ on the SNP…. I would ask, what exactly did the SNP expect?

    They sold out Scotland’s Constitutional Sovereignty and capitulated without a struggle to Scotland’s subjugation to the will of Westminster. Instead of a fight to get Independence over the line when we were in a whisker of doing so, we lose our European citizenship and squander a golden Constitutional opportunity to sink the Union without a trace, and we get 5 years of snivelling acquiescence when “Independence” is a dirty word and science denying misogynists are surreptitiously infiltrating the NEC for their own ends and advancement of their provocative delusions, which by themselves threaten to insult and divide the electorate and demolish the prospects of future majorities at Holyrood.

    Why in God’s name was any of this garbage ever put on the agenda ahead of Independence? Why? Why? Why? Isn’t that alone standalone proof that the SNP ‘leadership’ has lost the plot and isn’t fit for purpose? Let’s not even begin to dwell on what they tried to do to Alex Salmond.

    Brutal? Impeachment is too good for them. That’s just a small warm up for how brutal I’d be. It’s not just our medieval Constitution I’d be reintroducing.

  102. Ian Brotherhood says:

    For those who didn’t see it, the ‘Bridges for Indy’ people had a wee gathering outside the new BTUKOK garrison in Edinburgh (Wednesday?).

    Looks like a lot of folk are quite keen to make this a regular thing.

  103. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Averaging around 300 000 over last few months.

    Why not included?

    Because I didn’t know it existed. I checked your old site but as you blocked me on Twitter I’d never heard of the new one, and I’ve literally never seen anyone post a link to it or mention it in however long it’s existed.

    As it turns out SimilarWeb does indeed register it, but not at anything like 300,000 a month. It tracks 78,000 on the same measure as everything else here, just fractionally above SGP and Bella. I’ll edit it in when I get a minute to redo the graphs.

  104. mike cassidy says:

    The ongoing Transwars

    Good old JK Rowling does a John Lennon

    The attack

    The riposte

  105. ‘Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
    28 August, 2020 at 10:56 am
    “Averaging around 300 000 over last few months.

    Why not included?“

    Because I didn’t know it existed. I checked your old site but as you blocked me on Twitter I’d never heard of the new one, and I’ve literally never seen anyone post a link to it or mention it in however long it’s existed.’

    I genuinely had never heard of that site either until reading this post today. Which is odd, really.

  106. Dcanmore says:

    When it comes to Scottish politics, I’m pretty much on the outside looking in. Being based in London for the last 12 years I’ve found this to be an advantage to some extent, I can look at the overall picture without being sucked into a bubble of the Scottish MSM.

    My unadulterated observations is this: I see Scotland moving towards independence, I can feel it, the polls back this up. The SNP can mess up from time to time, the Unionists can pull out GERS from their arse and wave it in the nation’s face, Scotland has gone beyond the fear factor now. This is a nation that is waiting for independence to happen and that national feeling will only get stronger.

    As I observe the opposition to independence, it is nothing like what it was in 2012-2015, in talent and in numbers. This is why an outfit Alliance for Unity has taken shape headed by George Galloway. This is the ‘C’ team of anti-independence. It is an act of desperation by the fringe players of Unionism. Andrew Neil’s attitude is a good barometer, he knows what is coming hence his more reactive and agitated manner on social media when it comes to Scotland, independence and the lack of a coherent UK Government. I believe that other commentators such as Kenny Farquharson and Alex Massie quietly feel Scottish independence is on its way.

    A couple of things has taken place over the last few years. Scotland is now naturally gravitating towards indy, the soft No vote of 2014 is switching sides and their children (now 16-21) will vote Yes. The Yes vote of 2014 has not shrunk and it won’t regardless of propaganda. It now has a solid base of 50-52%, the 55% poll rating recently is remarkable but not quite the foundation yet, it probably will be in the New Year. Once that is confirmed as the standing point for the Indy movement then the Union is absolutely finished.

    The other matter is attitudes in England. They have changed quite a bit since 2014. There seems to be more of an ambivalence towards Scottish Independence, people I know who were vehemently against the 2014 referendum and “Scottish separation” are now markedly non-plussed. The usual response now is “sad to see you go but I can see why and I don’t blame you”. People are feeling change.

    Brexit and the ongoing Irish border issue will be big factors in 2021, I can see BoJo resigning (citing family issues) and Gove taking over as PM in the summer approved by Cummings of course. If this happens then Scottish Indy may come sooner than most people believe as these factors will drive the Indy polls to 60% posthaste. The next 12 months is going to get very very messy for the UK Gov and Scotland will be watching.

  107. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “ is still going…

    I’m glad it is still going too,.. but in fairness to Rev Stu, didn’t you announce you were hanging up your keyboard a few months ago?”

    Yes, I remember reading that too. And the old address I had on file was – I do wish people wouldn’t keep changing sites without adding a link to the new one on the old one.

    But the current one doesn’t register on SimilarWeb anyway so in terms of this article it’s a bit of a moot point.

  108. Famous15 says:

    Mike Cassidy @ 11.09

    The tragedy Rowling sees unfolding deeply affects trans gender dysphoria sufferers and so her defensive words makes her a transophile and definitely NOT a transphobe.

    I still wonder at the evil source of the aggressive opposition to her views.

    Now can we get on and win independence!

  109. Josef Ó Luain says:

    Main stream journalists are, on the the whole, politically compromised by personal indebtedness and, therefore, must follow their employer’s in-house-line to pay their mortgages and so forth—Everything changes and nothing changes—That S.C. has the wit, courage and needful intellectual capacity, not to mention the literary talent to successfully follow his own in-house-line, shouldn’t really have to be said. It is blindingly, fucking obvious! More power to him.

  110. Polly says:

    ‘But I would add that perhaps we haven’t been supportive enough. The spirit of mutuality has been, if not entirely lost, then diminished severely.’

    Yes, almost everyone and anyone and their dog dumps on wings at times, I’ve seen that clearly in the time I’ve been reading. It seems rare for him to do it back. Except for ordinary folk still showing outspoken support, at best a neutrality from on high is the very best they’ve managed towards Wings especially, or to most other independent supporting new media. Skotia seems the exception, and though Gray especially is very effective, there are a number of ‘woke’ within it behind him, so I wondered why they were singled out too. If it was just they’d learned late in the day their error in not supporting Indy media then surely they should start supporting others more too? They fawn over any MSM good press, sickeningly.

    I like to read widely from MSM as well as Indy sites, I believe there should be a place for all and each will find its own audience and yes it would be good if all were mutually supportive and allowing others to state their own views, and all supported by the SNP and wider Yes movement. A nice dream.

    Thankfully Wings also has many long term loyal supporters and new loyal supporters like myself have also joined. If some old timers have left while factions in SNP have tried their best to cut him off at the knees then that’s on them and if he wants to show he still has a good readership despite that I understand why he’d want to. Especially given comments above not only from the unsubtle Tatu but Capella too ‘I thought the constant SNP bashing would put people off. Perhaps it has. Perhaps you have a different readership.’ All but implying all ‘real’ independence supporters had gone and only unionist remain. What is not considered is the very obvious fact that wings change toward SNP is shared by many, despite present poll numbers. I would argue that present poll numbers are rather an indication of an argument Capella used there, some of those poll numbers are not the same people.

    @ Tatu3
    Comments from Tatu3 above, and some supposedly previous regular readers – pity though they’re betraying themselves when they’re stupid enough to try to make the claim ‘I haven’t visited this site in ages’ yet in the same post goes on to say ‘For about a year now this site has been over run with unionists.’ They expect other folk to believe they very conveniently are in the right place, right time to just happen to have read the very one article now which they want to make their comment on. You’ll have to try harder than that, love, if you want me to believe anything you say.

  111. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Brexit and the ongoing Irish border issue will be big factors in 2021, I can see BoJo resigning (citing family issues) and Gove taking over as PM in the summer approved by Cummings of course. If this happens then Scottish Indy may come sooner than most people believe as these factors will drive the Indy polls to 60% posthaste.”

    Polls don’t get you independence. Can you imagine Gove granting a referendum? If so I’ll take a pint of what you’re on.

  112. Yes an Indian man in jail for Scottish freedom how many Scots are ???

  113. mountain shadow says:

    My everyday reading list in order is..

    Scots Go Pop
    Wee Ginger Dug
    Craig Murray
    The National
    The Herald (Posting to wind up the SiU Numpties)

  114. Arc of Prosperity here. I would claim the website isn’t entirely dead – I’ve written 11 blog posts in the past year – but that, of course, is not a lot compared to the 68 posts I wrote in 2016, or the 94 posts in 2014.

    As Milady correctly writes, I went into Brexit exile in Denmark with my family a year and a half ago, and that in itself has of course reduced my output.

    However, I would say the main reason for the website being near-dormant is that there’s nothing to write about. There’s no point arguing for a referendum when Nicola Sturgeon is not listening to anybody but simply is waiting for Westminster to grant a Section 30 order. There’s no point discussing the advantages of being independent when there’s no campaign going on. I could write more, but I fear that most of it would be criticising Nicola Sturgeon, and that isn’t really why I started the blog.

    So I’m waiting. If something interesting happens, I’ll write about it.

  115. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “However, I would say the main reason for the website being near-dormant is that there’s nothing to write about.”

    I totally empathise with that, which is why Wings had a four-month holiday that we’re only semi-officially back from now. WGD is doing fine from pointing out that the Tories are bad every day, but I’m pretty sure most Wings readers already know that and don’t need reminding every 24 hours, while Bella and SGP appear to be mostly “shush for indy, both votes SNP” cheerleading sites with a side-order in the former case of “everyone in the Yes movement except us is a terrible bigot and must be purged”.

    Other than the scandal of the Salmond fit-up and its ongoing ramifications, there’s very little happening in Scottish politics that’s worth discussing.

    Glad that you haven’t totally quit, though 🙂

  116. Colin Alexander says:


    I think you’ve just painted a big target on your back. Yet again.

    My own experience is: I no longer read Wee Ginger Dug, nothing personal. I don’t read Peter A Bell, that’s personal – he’s a foulmouthed bully.

    I occasionally visit ScotGoesPop.

    My favourite Scottish politics blogs are: Craig Murray, Wings and GrouseBeater.

  117. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Test the environment Stu. Call for a fundraiser. Count me in.”

    We haven’t done a fundraiser in 15 months now, but we’re expecting the final bill from Kezia Dugdale’s lawyers in the next few days and when it arrives we’ll probably consult readers on whether to just take the hit or do one to replenish the Fighting Fund.

  118. Willie says:

    Do a fund raiser Rev Stu because folks will gladly contribute.

    Your blog is popular, it’s well read as the numbers show, and whilst things may not be going as we would like, we need to keep pushing, be prepared. There’s a lot of water to flow under the bridge between now and next year’s election.

    Thunder birds really could be go, and in ways we don’t at the moment imagine.

  119. Stu
    Why would WordPress stats be less reliable that the one you used?
    Blocking – I was getting swamped by all the trans stuff.

  120. Grouse Beater says:

    One million plus readers reading the most articulate independence sites – ‘plus’ being those that ‘don’t move the needle’; not bad, unless it’s the same folk doing the rounds over and over again.

    Still, if indy supports does not fall back again, it follows more people are convinced autonomy as a good thing.

    My essays attract anything from 3,000 readers to over 15,000 each week, depending on the content. Increases this year have been reassuring – takes commitment to read a long-form essay. My Twitter site has a huge readership with only 11,000 of followers.

    I like being niche – the security services and trolls are not activated! Moreover, it’s already a burden to administrate, demanding too much daily of my remaining time.

    Sad to see Bella Caledonia falter. Antagonistic editor aside, it was a once decent concept, but the articles are too often poorly written, the ‘anything goes’ defeats the best. The editorial line is blurred. I do not know what it stands for.

    10 years is too long to sustain output and quality even if most is mere on the spot opinion and not erudite research. (This is my sixth year.) People have lives to lead. If the SNP is perceived as anti-movement and sullen, folk are justified in leaving the fold.

  121. Stu
    Actually, I’m getting drawn into the petty anal stuff I retired from 5 years ago so forget my question.
    I don’t care.
    All power to your elbow and to all the other Indybloggers!

  122. Glad that you haven’t totally quit, though
    Aw, thanks! Likewise! ?

  123. [That question mark was meant to be a smiley.]

  124. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “The spirit of mutuality has been, if not entirely lost, then diminished severely.”

    “Yes, almost everyone and anyone and their dog dumps on wings at times,”

    The spirit of mutuality, which was already rather strained behind the scenes – I went through SO many cycles of getting furious ranting email attacks from Mike Small, followed by apologies – pretty much died overnight after the 2016 election, when the woke RISE faction didn’t get the MSP seats they’d decided they were entitled to for their indyref work.

    They immediately threw a tantrum at the electorate, but also at any sites they realised were somewhat more in tune with the feelings of ordinary mainstream Scots. They couldn’t court-martial the voters, so they resolved to shoot the absolute hell out of the messengers instead, and they’ve never stopped.

    What we’re experiencing now is basically still the aftershock of that electoral humiliation, when RISE even lost to the Scottish Christian Party, and they realised that since they weren’t getting any votes anyway the best route to still getting some attention was to go even more extreme, and a time-honoured route for extremists to appeal to their base and carve out some kind of status is to attack the most popular things on their own side. It comes with the turf, and Wings will continue to accept it as the (sour, resentful, backhanded) compliment it is.

  125. callmedave says:

    Radio shortbread pushing the theme from Tom Greatrex (Ex Lab: MP Hamilton & Rutherglen kicked out in 2015 election) this morning on the lack nuclear power in Scotland.

    Hunterston B nuclear power station in Ayrshire is to close almost two years early after cracks were found in the core of its reactors.

    He hints at Scotland having to ‘import’ electricity from ‘darn Sarf’. We (Scotland) haven’t enough base power capacity when the wind doesn’t blow…he says. 🙂

    Paul Wheelhouse SGov energy minister easily squashed the scare story 20-mins later but shortbread basically saying to him…Aye right! at the end of his interview.

    I think the Union is looking at the pre 2014 play book and limbering up.

    Greatrex was given a cushy job in the Nuclear Power sector after his defeat in 2015 to punt it’s benefits but still expected to do his duty at times like these it seems. 🙁

    I’m in for a crowd funder Stu.

  126. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Why would WordPress stats be less reliable that the one you used?”

    WordPress stats record page views, not visits. You’re comparing apples to oranges. It’s not that they’re invalid, but if you’re measuring stuff you need to use the same measure for all of them or the comparison is meaningless, and since you can’t see other people’s WordPress stats the only viable metric is publicly-viewable figures like SimilarWeb’s.

  127. Graeme says:

    Colin Alexander says:
    28 August, 2020 at 1:05 pm

    “I don’t read Peter A Bell, that’s personal – he’s a foulmouthed bully.”


    Only if you disagree with him Colin, according to him only idiots disagree with him so don’t do it, he doesn’t like it

  128. Confused says:

    “They immediately threw a tantrum at the electorate”


    tee hee

  129. Lizg says:

    Peter A Bell @ 6.56am
    While I agree that the sprit of 2013/14 between the Indy blogs has been lost,I still holdout hope that when the Indy ref gets going we’ll discover it’s been found.
    My main complaint is infact the SNP here.
    They ( in the name of their cause ) were the catilist for a whole new fledgling media, formed and funded from and for the people’s of Scotland.
    This was a precious resource and should have been nurtured and not treated and Still treated as an internet fad.

    It is nothing short of disgraceful that the government of Scotland does not acknowledge or encourage the grassroots media outlets ( All of them ) that developed organically from the people of Scotland’s patronage.
    Why are interviews and quotes not given there first.
    It seems to be beyond dispute that the MSM is letting everyone down, and here in Scotland around the first Indy ref this was being answered.
    While it’s no surprise that the London controlled parties have let us down too,had the Scottish government/ SNP played their part and pushed the “new” media as the go to resource for political information !
    Scotland could be leading the way in addressing the corruption and domination of the corporate media.
    But no…. when they need media…..they still run to the mainstream .

    Even when they do engage, it seems to be on the down low and very rarely in their own names.
    Why is that?
    There’s not one of them who have an issue helping “Twitter” and its shareholders thrive,when they want to “engage” with voters.
    Yet Scotland fledgling new media is treated like it doesn’t, or it barely exists!

    *Broadcasting Scotland * ( who work bloody hard and try to be professional) as far as I know got two….. fucking TWO questions at the months and months of FMs daily briefings.
    Being partisan can’t be the reason for excluding them when the BBC are right there, not to mention almost all the British Right wing rags.
    So again why are the Media which speak for 45/55% of Scotland getting the crumbs from Holyroods table.

    The tin hat was the Cooperation given to the BBC in their Alex Salmond hit piece.
    As far as I can tell the alphabet women were a mixture of SNP and Scottish government employees they therefore are either Independance supporting or Employed to be neutral on the issue.

    Well… excuse me….helping the BBC broadcast a hit piece is neither supportive or neutral is it?

    Even if some of the footage was of interviews already given…… the right to reply was right here in the Indy media and to date is still unused….
    We’ve even got Pete Wishart behaving as though the online Indy people are to be played with and provoked and he’s not the only one!

    The only positive thing about all of this is that we still have the outlets we do.
    Because if the above stats show anything….it’s that we’re serious and I think it’s about bloody time these politicians woke up to that and stepped out of the gutter and into the spotlight and got themselves a real interview or an honest quote for a change.

  130. Jules says:

    I really hope that another referendum *would* see an outbreak of unity and common purpose. We’re unlikely to win it if that’s not the case. Put differently, if I were a unionist I think my only hope would be to do everything to sow disunity within the pro-Indy movement. I suspect much of that is happening, surreptitiously, already.

    These readership numbers highlight the important role that you will have, Stuart, in determining whether or not that sense of unity and common purpose takes hold. It goes without saying that it is entirely your choice, but fwiw I think it’d be great if you could find a way to park or agree to differ on those issues that create/foment the greatest division within the Yes movement until after we’ve won our normal self-government, at which point we can actually decide amongst ourselves, democratically and empowered, the detailed policies of the kind of country we’re going to build.

  131. Graf Midgehunter says:

    I’m afraid I didn’t know either that Talking up Scotland had moved, the last posts were from the middle of June..!

    So before too many folk get their underware twisted, remember with a lot of coming and going or simply moving sites it’s easy for people to lose oversight. Especially when lots of other things are happening in the yoonatic world of nutcases.

    Peter A Bell – keep going, we can’t afford to lose you as well.

    Thomas Widmann – god dag! Har det godt i Danmark?

    Don’t lose sight of the goal folks, we won’t win with arguments about statistics.. 🙂

  132. Professional Cynic says:

    ‘Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
    28 August, 2020 at 1:25 pm
    “The spirit of mutuality has been, if not entirely lost, then diminished severely.”

    Interesting being directed to that piece about Kevin Williamson. He has always been a hyper-PC cultural-fringes-dwelling character, and seems desperate to stay in the limelight as he gets older. A recent excursion in the media for him was the dubious tale of a pole being thrown through his kids’ window because he had put a Black Lives Matter sticker in it. Have a look at the story:

    Have a look at that bedroom. Does it look like a child’s bedroom? Williamson is 59 years old. Must have had some new kids to complement the ones he had decades ago. Seemed like a plea for attention, or to try and get some kudos for being at the supposed front lines of fighting racism. Dodgy, dodgy stuff. ‘2 young guys about 5’8 wearing grey joggers grey tshirt hoody. One white, one “eastern”….’ indeed.

  133. Shug says:

    Do a fund raiser and do not be out of pocket. My wallet is open.
    Better you see my money than the Scottish press or bbc
    Sometimes I agree with you sometimes not but either way there is more journalism here than all papers put together

  134. Capella says:

    @ Polly – I only have the evidence of my own experience, admittedly limited. For example, people I know have said they don’t read WoS now that the tone has changed, and people whose comments I used to enjoy reading are now gone.

    Average visit lasts c 4 mins. That suggests many people come on to the site and skim read the main article. They are not engaging btl.

    I used to leave my browser up all day and revisit many times to see what was new in the comments. I don’t bother now. Most comments are of the knee-jerk “we all hate the SNP and Nicola Sturgeon” variety. I agree with Tatu3 that some commenteers are likely to be 77th brigade trolls. The objective is to undermine confidence in the independence leadership and suppress votes. The miracle is how little effect this is having on the general public. Yet.

    I have criticised the SNP many times here, on the GRA and the HCB. But on the AS trial, I have yet to see the evidence of a conspiracy involving Nicola Sturgeon. I agree that the NEC composition is a problem. But the incumbents are voted on to the committee. Do other parties manage their affairs and choose a leader more democratically?

    Many comments here ignore the actual evidence available (poll results for one example) and clearly display confirmation bias. Simply echoing MSM attacks on he SNP is not going to promote independence IMO.

    But I do expect a great deal more engagement when a campaign begins. I live in hope.

  135. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Average visit lasts c 4 mins. That suggests many people come on to the site and skim read the main article. They are not engaging btl.”

    The average visit has never been noticeably longer than that – it rarely is for ANY site – and fewer than 5% of readers have ever engaged below the line. There have been no changes there, only the names are different.

    In September 2014, for example, when you might assume people were paying relatively close attention, the average visit length was still only four and a half minutes.

    “But on the AS trial, I have yet to see the evidence of a conspiracy involving Nicola Sturgeon.”

    You don’t have much longer to wait. For your own sake, try to be ready – it’ll hurt more the more surprised you are.

  136. Lorna Campbell says:

    Keep going Stuart Campbell. If you weren’t making a big difference, they wouldn’t bother attacking you so consistently.

  137. Republicofscotland says:

    Yes I recall the excitement and and build up to the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, and the energy surrounding it from the plethora of social media accounts to the enthusiasm of the grassroots movement, and ordinary yes supporters on the streets, no campaigners aside, there was a positivity in Scotland that could be felt by just walking down the streets.

    Fast forward to today, and years of false dawns from the SNP even as Westminster has torn itself apart on the likes of Brexit, the entire independence movement still has faith but the heirarchy of the SNP government, hasn’t kept its end of the bargain. In fact its somewhat went backwards, in jailing AUOB die-hard Manny Singh and attempting to stump Martin Keating on the need for an S30, not to mention the biggy, colluding to have Alex Salmond sent to prison for the rest of his life. Salmond of course did keep his end of the bargain and led us to an independence referendum.

    Of course as you say the years of waiting has dulled the yes masses enthusiasm to read pro-indy blogs a few aside including yours. We are akin to the frogs under the dried up river bed patiently waiting for the rains to fall on some East African plain, that will signal our revival and herald our return to the world. But who will be our equivalent of those rains on the independence front, Sturgeon? Cherry? Or someone else or no one else?

    I guess as long as there’s hope, indy blogs will remain until we gain our independence or Westminster rolls back devolution entirely for Scotland, which will it be I wonder.

  138. Capella says:

    I do read Prof Robertson’s site regularly so I did know that the URL had changed. His site provides the critique of the MSM which WoS used to specialise in. It’s an extremely useful contribution to the independence cause IMO.

    But I don’t comment on other sites very often. I like WGD and Craig Murray and Scot Goes Pop. Everybody has something to contribute. Sometimes even Bella Caledonia has an interesting article.

    For the links which Nana used to post here you need to go to Indyref2:

    I also like podcasts and indy videos. WGD is podcasting with Richard Murphy this week – RM is another excellent resource for us. Lesley Riddoch has something interesting to say too. So there is no shortage of indy media available. Only hours in the day are in short supply.

  139. Colin Alexander says:

    Stu Campbell or anyone

    I’m not so sharp-witted today, so can you help me out of my brain freeze:

    What’s the main points the article is putting across?

    Is it the one big success story of indyref was the online presence of pro-indy blogs but that’s withering away now, apart from Wings and Wee Ginger Dug


    Look at me: Mine’s is bigger than yours?

    or what?

  140. Republicofscotland says:

    What about Craig Murray’s blog it supports Scottish independence, I’d imagine his blog has a fair bit of traffic as well.

  141. Capella says:

    @ Rev Stu Campbell – You don’t have much longer to wait. For your own sake, try to be ready – it’ll hurt more the more surprised you are.

    Don’t worry about me. Facts are chiels that winna ding and the facts are always friendly.

    Re 4 min visits – I would expect that to be the case. Most people are too busy to spend hours every day online. But I do miss the wealth of information that used to appear btl as well as the articles themselves.

  142. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “What about Craig Murray’s blog it supports Scottish independence, I’d imagine his blog has a fair bit of traffic as well.”

    I already answered that. It’s a world politics blog that only sometimes covers Scottish politics.

  143. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “What’s the main points the article is putting across?”

    The big clue is to read the words.

    “The subsequent shrivelling of that presence has been one of the least observed and explored phenomena of the six years since the referendum, and especially since the SNP’s election victory in 2016. The incredibly wide-ranging, mutually-supportive pro-Yes new media is now down to a tiny handful of outlets, most of which are barely read (and most of which would celebrate if the others burned down in a chemical fire).

    But overall none of this is great news. Years of inaction and worse from the SNP have drained much of the enthusiasm and strength from the Yes movement, and the great grassroots surge of activity that characterised 2011-14 has withered away, with only the occasional march (now scuppered by COVID-19) helping to keep spirits up.

    The once-huge and diverse army of campaigners, lacking a focus for its energies, has predictably turned in on itself and split into warring factions, while other parts have just lost heart and wandered back to their normal lives.”

    TBH I can’t dumb it down much more than that.

  144. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    I post links to Prof JWRs Blog occasionally @ Rev. Stuart Campbell says at 10:56 am

    It makes an excellent 10 minute briefing for what the BritNat Media bullshit of the day I need to counter in conversation with people.

  145. Colin Alexander says:

    Stu Campbell

    Cheers for the reply.

    I’d say to that: Well, what do you expect? There is no leadership anymore on indy. No indy campaign. Nothing.

    It’s heartening that there is still ANY pro-indy bloggers around and thousands of readers, despite the SNP’s attempts to kill off any pro-indy sentiment.

  146. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Well, what do you expect? There is no leadership anymore on indy. No indy campaign. Nothing.

    It’s heartening that there is still ANY pro-indy bloggers around and thousands of readers, despite the SNP’s attempts to kill off any pro-indy sentiment.”

    I agree. I’d have thought that was fairly clear by this point.

  147. Colin Alexander says:

    We don’t have a Scottish Government: we have the Imelda Marcos Sturgeon colonial SNP regime jailing and trying to jail Scotland’s pro-indy dissidents.

  148. Colin Alexander says:

    From Craig Murray: “It was the SNP group on Glasgow City Council who insisted that council officers report Manni Singh to the police and demand action against him”.

  149. Terry says:

    Craig Murray is a good guy – please read his post

    Stu – more than happy to donate to any fundraiser anytime

    Activists out here are gearing up. Many have wised up, others are fighting the battle within the SNP. We are leaderless but we just get on with things. Wings matters now more than ever. Like a boil though, things are coming to a head.

    Question – could Joanna Cherry become leader if she is still inWestminster? Sometimes I think she and Alex are our only hope just now.

  150. Colin Alexander says:

    Stu Campbell

    Stay in England with it’s Imperial right-wing Tory Govt: you’re probably safer there to exercise freedom of speech than under Sturgeon’s anti-indy regime and their SNP politically controlled “justice” system and Police Scotland.

  151. Capella says:

    Those backing Alex Salmond as a come back leader have something of a mountain to climb. Not impossible I grant you.

    SNP voters were asked to compare Nicola Sturgeon and Alex Salmond’s leadership in a new poll for The Times.
    The YouGov poll results showed voters who support the SNP – and those who back other parties – see Sturgeon as the better first minister.
    Among voters in general, 5% backed Salmond compared with 60% who felt Sturgeon had been a better leader. About 8% said the two had equally good records, while 20% said neither performed well.
    Among SNP voters, just 3% backed Salmond while 83% backed Sturgeon. About 11% said they had performed equally well, and 1% said neither had done a good job.

  152. Muscleguy says:

    Dundee RIC was still meeting, in a pub basement, until the lockdown scuppered things. We were all going on a bus to the SOUB march in Arbroath to hand out fliers etc. Which got cancelled sadly.

    But we are still here, we know there are still folk to be persusded as well as busy former Yessers who need a fillip. There are other Yes groups around and about we are just doing local things for local people so we don’t register nationally. We are still here though. The SNP bods bristle at the criticism of the SNP and the Holy One (All HAIL the Great Leader) but everyone gets to speak in 2014 style.

    The spirit marches on. We delivered Dundee to Yes, we can do it again, given the bloody chance.

  153. Republicofscotland says:

    As long as Sturgeon and Murrell have a vice like grip on the SNP you can forget about independence.

    Its patently obvious Sturgeon and Murrell don’t want Scottish independence, oh they trumpet it, for their own party’s benefit when needed but actual independence doesn’t appear to be on the agenda.

    What happened to Manni Singh is a disgrace, and in my opinion Manni is an example, of what independence demo organisers can expect from the SNP in the future if they don’t conform to the Sturgeon/Murrell doctrine. Sturgeon has no right to complain about any other countries handling of demos, not now that she’s imprisoned Manni, Christ we’re meant to be on the same side singing from the same hymn sheet it’s not Manni who should be locked up, he’s only doing what the SNP heirarchy should be doing pushing and promoting Scottish independence.

    Sturgeon has betrayed us there’s no doubt about it now, we voted for her and her party not just to implement a few competent policies but to deliver independence. In six years since Salmond kept his promise Sturgeon hasn’t even come close to it, even when Westminster tore itself apart on Brexit Sturgeon remained tacit on independence. Now she’s pushing Self-Id the GRA and the Hate Crime bill, most of society don’t see these policies as important or even proper, yet her clique push on regardless, even Westminster has kicked them into the long grass.

    For years any prominent politician promoting Scottish independence would struggle to get a modicum of airtime on the British nationalist tv channels, unless it was to pose negative questions, on a three against one basis. Yet miraculously Sturgeon now finds herself on the BBC and Sky news channels 5 days a week she also has airtime on LBC radio and Radio Scotland daily which has saw her popularity and trust ratings soar.

    Why would the British nationalist establishment allow Sturgeon such an amount of airtime knowing fine well that her popularity and ergo the popularity of independence would increase, unless of course they know that she’s no intention of pushing for independence, and giving her this airtime will lead to her party winning next years elections comfortably and allowing her to further implement her plans which don’t include Scottish independence.

  154. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Those backing Alex Salmond as a come back leader have something of a mountain to climb.”

    Nobody seriously thinks that’s going to happen.

  155. Muscleguy says:

    Dammit, AUOB is what I meant to type of course.

  156. Beaker says:

    @Terry says:
    28 August, 2020 at 3:23 pm
    “Question – could Joanna Cherry become leader if she is still inWestminster? Sometimes I think she and Alex are our only hope just now.”

    I don’t know what the SNP rules are, but I cannot see any logical reason as to why not. Be a bloody good idea if only to shut up that drone Blackford.

    If I am right in thinking – and please correct me if wrong – the First Minister is NOT elected by electorate but by the MSPs.
    I’m still “at work” so writing this in a break so don’t have time to Google it.

  157. crazycat says:

    @ Beaker

    Yes, the FM is elected in the Holyrood chamber. (Or has been, so far.)

  158. robertknight says:

    RoS @ 3:49


    Anyone looking for Scottish Independence will find it lying somewhere in a big patch of long grass – where oor Nic has kicked it.

  159. Muscleguy says:


    Hear! Hear! what you said in spades. In a recent article Robin McAlpine related a time he gave an invited talk at an SNP branch meeting. A middle class woman stood up and said Peter Murrell is a disgrace! and the rest of the meeting applauded and cheered her.

    You get the impression he would fall in an instant without HER and they both know it. Hence the clinging on so tightly, the control freakery, the no dissent or you’re OUT iron fists. Wonder why so many excellent MSPs are leaving politics? There you have it.

    You also have the disgraceful, still not rescinded, NEC decision barring the MPs from standing for Holyrood, just to keep Joanna Cherry away from Sturgeon lest the QC show up the tyro lawyer at the helm.

  160. Grouse Beater says:

    “The once-huge and diverse army of campaigners, lacking a focus for its energies, has predictably turned in on itself and split into warring factions”

    The ‘vast’ numbers must have evaporated swiftly.

    I see dedicated authors no different from colleagues of the same profession in the same institution where there is no crisis or disillusion only wide differences of opinion.

    There are some you respect, and there are others you avoid in case their standards degrade your own, but you keep your counsel to the closest of friends.

    You can see this mirrored in the old school SNP politicians retiring or withdrawing giving age or family related reasons for it, not lack of indy progress or stubborn one-solution leadership.

    In social media people have no such professional constraint. Protocol be damned, say what’s on your mind, express dislike of the other person’s work openly.

    What has arisen in the debate about progress, a vigorous debate brought about by the SNP’s infuriating reluctance to inform and educate and lead, is frustration. It is exacerbated by fans of Nicola who think she walks on water and who will not brook criticism of her or the policies she represents and promotes.

    The longer that prevails, the more heated the debate about which path to take to nationhood restored.

    The way to stop over-loaded opinion is for the SNP to show they relate to the masses, welcome new ideas, harness human hope, not by stymieing discourse and employing micro-control.

    When Independence Day arrives, what we read today will be as nothing to what is written then, as every section of society participates in the process to see their idea of a new Scotland implemented. That conflict will be a humdinger.

  161. Muscleguy says:

    Well said Gareth. Post a Yes vote it will be most entertaining to watch the unionist parties fall over themselves to suddenly back Scotland lest they be trampled by history. Some may not survive, certainly shorn of pocket money from the UK party many will struggle to function. Expect ardent missives of the imminent death of Scottish politics unless state funding of political parties is instituted, stat.

    Put that beside the unionist press rejigging themselves, some trying to pretend they were ever different. The Courier will remember the, brief, period they employed Alex Salmond himself as a columnist. I will bet on that.

    I’m not averse to the idea, but I feel a period of trial and the possible rise of very minor or even brand new parties should be allowed. I’ve said it before but witnessing what happened when we forced the poliies to give a PR system of our choice was instructive. The former third party kingmakers merged and the merged entity hung on then disappeared utterly. NZ First headed by a populist former National (Tory) MP rose to be thrid party kingmakers instead. He is currently the Foreign mnister having backed Jacinda to form a coalition. They are set to be almost obliterated in a NZ Labour landslide, Covid allowing the election.

    I’m not a betting man but If I had any money I would be placing bets against SLAB & the FibDems surviving. I predict the big unions will declare for the SNP or just decide to use their monies for other purposes leaving SLAB to survive on scant short money & member subscriptions (ha!). The recriminations from those let go from the payroll, the bunfight for the MPs (both of them) to get, something.

    The Tories will survive scum always do. The monied will ensure it. Will the SNP hold together? If not who gets the keys of the ‘old’ party? and the logo? There’s apparently no money in the till, too many non jobs for the girls & boys, every case a necessity of course.

    We live in Interesting times and may live in even more interesting ones.

  162. Polly says:

    @ Capella

    ‘They are not engaging btl.’

    Hi, Capella. But then most folk don’t, do they? You said you yourself don’t either often but do still read. I read off and on for a good while before doing so. And quite frankly no matter what you, I, or others say here, we’re not the important thing – this place shouldn’t be like a social club meeting of old friends. It’s Stuart’s articles which are the only importance and even as it is now, more a debating society than a social club you and Cat say it was (his Walton’s reference was memorable) that’s not important either. I hope you do keep commenting here and him too and don’t go the way of your old friends. But really as long as people are reading Stuart’s words that’s the only important thing.

    I agree some commenters now probably are 77th or trolls, but the difference is, looking back at some old blogs, I think that type was present then too, which you obviously didn’t see at the time or are unwilling now to believe was the case back then. This was the biggest blog back then too, why would they not have been present then? Possibly if more genuine supporters like yourself, or the ones who took the huff came back, and comment more it would dilute any bad influence you think is now prevalent.

    I know you’re honest enough to have seen and criticised SNP here, and I’ve admired your integrity while doing so. I genuinely believe it’s people like you who stay in the party and try to fight for it who we will all owe a debt to if you succeed, and even if failing I’ll still admire your stance anyway. I agree, no positive proof yet of Sturgeons guilt in conspiracy, and I myself am not yet certain either but where I differ from you is I’ve weighed up what we do both know so far and come to the conclusion that either she’s been behind it from beginning or has been badly manipulated into colluding in it. It boils down to one or other. Neither shows her in a good light as someone to lead us to independence and that’s not even getting to the topic of her allowing the abuse of Joan McAlpine. I would love to see someone try defending that and I know you won’t be the one since you’ve too much integrity. But I would like a good barney with anyone trying.

    I too hope when SNP starts a campaign for independence that folk will return and pull together. One of the older posters here (I think) was saying just the other day on another site that when the independence campaign heats up the WBB will be useful, so if that person was a former poster here even though they’ve gone off in high dudgeon for whatever reason, seems they in their heart still value Stuart really. I wish you a good day and hope to read many more of your posts in future.

  163. Colin Alexander says:

    The Scottish revolution against British Empire rule needs its martyrs.

    Just like South Africa needed Nelson Mandela, we need our Manni Singh, Craig Murray and Alex Salmond.

    Just like Indian freedom needed Ghandi going to prison for defying British laws designed to suppress the independence movement.

    I’m not suggesting hero worship. But, I’m saying: here are people who have risked everything for Scotland’s freedom. People who are prepared to give up their own freedom for the freedom of their people.

    The Empire is trying to teach us a lesson. Let us teach them a lesson:

    Even though you jail us, and try to censor us, and buy off our bent politicians with colonial power and prestige, the days of British Imperial rule in Scotland are numbered.

    Scotland shall be free.

  164. Andy Ellis says:

    @Grouse Beater 4.43pm

    Well said. Given your experience, I hope people listen. I think many pro-indy folk who share our outlook have simply distanced themselves from the toxic atmosphere and decided to await events. For myself, the treatment you received and witnessing the subsequent slow motion car crash of the party was a salutary lesson.

    Having lost my twitter account at the hands of the Twitler youth, I confess to not missing it now. I’m happy to get involved when the campaign actually starts, but at present….what’s the point? Meanwhile, I have a new job, plenty of other avenues to explore and a wee trip away to pick up a new car. I very hope you will still be around for the campaign Gareth: I look forward to meeting up with you and others when the real fight starts!

  165. kapelmeister says:

    Alex Salmond, Craig Murray, Manni Singh, Mark Hirst.

    Sturgeon should have been creating Scots independence.

    Instead, she’s been creating scads o’ defendents.

  166. Grouse Beater says:

    Muscle Guy and Andy – many thanks for your responses. Onward!

  167. Capella says:

    @ Polly – I think the reference to the WBB was Petra on the WGD comments. Petra used to post a lot of interesting links here. So did Legerwood who is also on WGD now. That’s why it took hours to work through the main article and the btl links. It wasn’t a social club, more a dissenters’ info exchange. Robert Peffers provided history lessons and constitutional insights, Indyref2 was keen on stats and polling, Dave MacEwan Hill had insight into the West Coast opinions, Dr Jim humour, ThePNR current events and marches and meetings, and many more.

    So I agree that the main article is important. But the sense of common purpose comes from the btl contributions.

    On the other topic – I’ll wait to hear the evidence given by Nicola Sturgeon and Alex Salmond at the Holyrood inquiry.

  168. Polly says:

    A good article from 2016. The aftershock of Rise sinking so comprehensively led not only to bitterness by its supporters but to a lot of the ‘woke’ infiltrating the party and bringing with them their agendas causing a lot of the problems. Yes, I can see that, they might have latched onto Rise instead. But that SNP, supposedly a broad church agreeing on things only until independence, should let them dominate discourse as they have is the problem and shows failure in leadership.

    And ‘the left’s capacity for nursing historical grudges is oddly selective.’ Yes, the left are guilty of that, but the fact that SNP are now exactly the same is the shocker, especially as in many ways the party have gone much further right since Salmond left. I’d highlight Sturgeon’s differential moral equation in criticism of bad behaviour within her party, she’s certainly selective. I agree with other folk, put up a fundraiser and I’ll contribute. Like the advert says ‘you’re worth it’. 🙂

  169. Ottomanboi says:

    Meanwhile in the wider world, the global hoaxers get ready for stage two.
    Thou shalt not touch, socialize, be human ever again.
    Sturgeon, Johnson and the rest…essentially not much to choose.

  170. Mike d says:

    O/t thats the 6pm bbc version of the news. Its Trump this, trump that. WhoTF is joe biden? Never heard his version of events in the run up to novembers election. Anyone would think the rancid bbc wants to push trumps agenda?. Oh wait a minute.

  171. Mike d says:

    Ottomanboi, i think the powers that be, will have trouble enforcing a 2nd lockdown.
    Give a man a mask
    And he will tell you
    The truth.
    Oscar wilde

  172. Polly says:

    @ Capella

    I understand you miss that sense of common purpose, it might come back should Nicola Sturgeon start any real campaigning. But surely the lack of it is not down to Stuart’s change from critiquing Unionists to critiquing SNP, but to the changes in the SNP policies themselves which deserve criticism? You agree with much of that criticism so I’m unsure why you agree also with people absenting themselves in pique. The fact that some folk decided no longer to read/comment here is attacking the messenger in my view, not the source of the problem.

    In many ways I’d argue that that common shared purpose and all pulling together was a bit like the nonsense from down south about how great 2012 olympics were, or how everyone in the war all felt great being in it together – it’s all a comfort blanket for the conscience while ignoring facts of what happened at the time, it’s a rosy view, no more than that. Yes feel good factor is great for propaganda and encouraging social cohesion and if it works, fantastic. It didn’t work in 2014. And were the 2012 Olympic times really a wonderful time showing how Great Britain was? The beginnings of brexit and some of the racism was there then too. Or the war years, what about the black market and Coventry? I’ve always been more cynical, and more solitary, so never needed that shared sense of moving towards independence before – not until I almost gave up hope because of the stalling, GRA and abuse of Joan. Before then I suppose I had my own happy comfort blanket, believing if I voted SNP the party would fight for independence. Huh, on that.

    As for your old friend Petra who no longer deigns to cross this threshold, yet who wishes to avail herself of the presumably new WBB which I was guessing she meant Wings would produce coming up to any future referendum – had everyone deserted this blog as she has done, if everyone failed to support it as presumably she decided not to – then there might not have been any new WBB or any ongoing blog to fight for independence that she could rely on when she needed it.

  173. Dan says:

    I see the local electoral offices are posting out canvas letters to check who resides at each address.

    NB. Completing and returning these letters does not mean all individuals listed on the returned form will automatically be registered to vote. Registering to vote involves a different process.

    And on that point, it is worth noting that earlier this year the electoral franchise of the group eligible to vote in Scotland has been expanded, so activists may wish to contact folk that were previously not allowed to vote and assist them in getting registered on the electoral roll.

  174. twathater says:

    To ALL the “if not SNP who you gonna vote for people” I am SICK of this meme , FFS STOP BLAMING voters who DESPERATELY WANT to vote for OUR independence . BLAME the people who are making it INCREASINGLY IMPOSSIBLE to do just that

    Nicola Sturgeon KNOWS the massive opposition to her reviled policies of the GRA and HCB yet she REFUSES to ditch them ,

    I have STATED on here and elsewhere it further exemplifies the CONTEMPT she has for independence supporters when she feels that her dictatorial stance will NOT be challenged and that is DESPICABLE

  175. Achnababan says:

    Right now things have gone a bit quiet as I think we are in the middle of the Phoney War prior to IndyRef2. But who are the real phoneys?

  176. crazycat says:

    @ Dan

    I received a similar communication by e-mail.

    A recent tweet from Mike Russell (which I can’t, of course, now find), however, quoted the relevant paragraph in the Referendums Act 2020, which defines the franchise.

    Eligibility depends not only on being on the electoral roll, but also on being a Commonwealth, Irish or EU citizen. So some of those newly able to vote in local and Holyrood elections will still be unable to participate in a referendum.

  177. Stoker says:

    Polly, if you haven’t already done so, this is well worth a read:

  178. Achnababan says:

    This has been a good thread today and good to see Craig, John, GB and other bloggers come on here today – please engage more with each other…. we rely on all of view to inform and inspire!

    PS I do miss some of the old posters who no longer appear here like DMH, Petra and of course Robert Peffers, (who may have passed away given we have not heard from him in such a time – any one know?).

  179. crazycat says:

    @ Dan / myself

    Not the MR tweet, but includes the same clause from the Referendum Act:

  180. Capella says:

    @ Polly – I never met Petra so she is not “my old friend”. Nor would I use such pejorative terms such as “leaving in a fit of pique” or not deigning to comment. People left here on a matter of principle. They were not willing to tolerate the open hostility to the SNP and the party leader. At least, that is my recollection.
    That’s a perfectly honourable stand to take.

  181. leither says:


    wos stats are holding up, its true, although we dont know where the hits come from in the uk.

    it is also true the commenters btl have changed and i dare say when the wwb2 is published, others will step up to the task of distributing it scotland wide to the yes hubs

    others will also contribute and push the wos crowd funds across social media and indeed, like roguecoder, organise crowdfunds for 10,000 flags etc btl

    the difference. tho is the dearth of community spirit and togetherness withing the yes movement nowadays. the snp and yes have loads of members and social media commentators. but actual activists willing to canvas and leaflet are few on the ground. almost 100% of the activists in my local yes group are also activists in my local snp branch.

    many will refuse to deliver or touch the wbb2 now. I would, but that isnt the point, to successfully distribute wbb1 i needed the support from all activist in my yes group, without it, wbb2 wont happen.

    feel free to canvas the activists in your own local groups to see if wos wbb2 would be something they would touch?

  182. Republicofscotland says:

    “Wonder why so many excellent MSPs are leaving politics? There you have it.”

    Muscleguy@ 4.12pm.

    On the above certain Sturgeonistas, tell me when I mention the above, that they’ve left because they’re old, and that fresh new young blood will be good for the party.

    They won’t even entertain the idea it might be because of the direction Sturgeon and Murrell are taking the party in.

  183. Republicofscotland says:


    “Anyone looking for Scottish Independence will find it lying somewhere in a big patch of long grass – where oor Nic has kicked it.”

    Robert Knight.

    Glasgow SNP councillors asking the police to prosecute a prominent independence supporter for doing what we elected them for, promoting Scottish independence, whose betrayed who. 72 days in prison for trying to help your country break free from a controlling foreign parliament.

    I’d give him a f@cking medal no a jail sentence. Under Sturgeon and Murrell Scotland is fast becoming a Kafkaesque country for those folk who promote Scottish independence.

    Front line victims include the Rev, Salmond, Hirst and Murray watch out the COPFS will get you.

  184. Tannadice Boy says:

    Think about Sturgeon in a transactional analysis way. She speaks in the parent critical tape all of the time. That is not conducive to persuading minds. When I was doing my bit for Indy including standing beside Brain Cox in a banter sketch. I was struck by two women who had been on the street for days beforehand. Polite, respectful, intelligent and probably converted more people than I did.

  185. Colin Alexander says:

    Republicofscotland @8.29pm. Well said.


    Stu Campbell

    I think you were wrong to criticise Manni Singh on Craig Murray’s btl.

    No doubt some Indians said the same about Ghandi when he was imprisoned by the British Empire for refusing to submit to rules used to enforce British superiority and suppress Indians’ desire to be free from British rule.

    “That Ghandi! Well, he brought it on himself: all he had to do was step in the gutter when his British Imperial superiors approached and carry his British permission slip when travelling.

    If only he’d bent the knee in colonial submission, he wouldn’t have been jailed”.

  186. Lizg says:

    Capella & Polly
    Petra didn’t leave she got banned Ledgerwood left in sympathy with her.

  187. Capella says:

    Petra got banned? What for?

  188. Lizg says:

    Capella @ 9.27
    As far as I remember, insisting the Rev should not post any content that was detrimental to the SNP or that could be useful to the Unionists.
    But she kept doing it constantly, and despite a fair few warnings from him that’s she could disagree but not to tell him his business on his own blog, she didn’t listen so he banned her

  189. Rick H Johnston says:

    We should all have sympathy for Manni Singh.
    The time is coming when we’ll all have to decide whether breaking the rules is not just an option but a necessity.
    When the votes are counted and its not good for London, do you think they’ll just hand Scotland to us on a plate?

  190. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “If only he’d bent the knee in colonial submission, he wouldn’t have been jailed”.”

    He already entered a guilty plea. He wasn’t sentenced to imprisonment, but refused to accept a lesser penalty and so left the judge no option.

  191. gus1940 says:


    Watching last night’s vomit inducing Trump Family Rally with its sea of US flags I couldn’t help being reminded of similar events in Nuremberg in the 30’s.

    And that’s before one even looks at the rabble rousing farago of lies in the hate filled speeches.


  192. holymacmoses says:

    Sort of off-topic but also on-topic
    Ms Spears has ‘pinned’ to the top of her ‘twitter’ page
    ‘Pinned Tweet
    Rhiannon Spear
    ·28 Apr
    If you are a constituent please reach out to me on…’

    Given that she then supplies an email address and a telephone number I am very interested in understanding what Ms Spear hopes to achieve by way of communication by choosing to write

    ‘reach out to me’
    rather than
    ‘contact me’

    Something tells me that this linguistic artifice is part-and-parcel of what is deep-down-wrong with the eyes-wide-shut, mouth-wide-open, ears-well-plugged, nose simultaneously in-the-air and to-the-ground, brigade

    The more words they create through Babel the less meaning they acquire through living

  193. RobertTheTruth says:

    @Capella 9.27

    Petra was indeed given every chance but she continually made insinuations about the money raised, the use of it for the appeal against Dugdale (despite the Rev canvassing donors and readers alike) and when the new WBB was coming out. She frequently flew off the handle at Rev Stu for saying anything against the SNP and one particular night when a post went into moderation she posted incessantly all through the night that he review her post and that she was exhausted waiting on him to do so. She picked on and harried anyone who said anything remotely negative about Nicola Sturgeon.

    She reposted everything that Nana posted despite there being a link to Nana’s site. She came across as a drama queen and she continues to do the same on WGD. She joined in one particular nasty bullying episode with the awful Cubby where they hounded Craig Murray all night.

    And she posted some extremely dodgy anti vaxxer stuff too. Legerwood flounced in solidarity and Dr Jim left when no one laughed any more at his Stanley Baxter type humour and saw through his fake couthy persona.

    As for Peffers, if anyone actually learned anything from him they needed to be directed to a library or internet search engine and shown how to do basic research. He was an arrogant blawhard who frequently bullied anyone who said anything that went against his ridiculous ideas about the SNP (a party to which he belonged but admitted he had played no active role with for years).

    No one who has any real desire for independence really misses any of them.They were here to promote themselves.

  194. Lizg says:

    Gus 1940 @10.14
    It was chilling indeed….
    But you might like Steven Colbert’s modification of Melania Trumps dress 🙂
    Because she wore green they’re using it as a green screen and put ” I’m with stupid on it “.
    It certainly diluted the “visual” impact of Trump and hopefully the voters will deal with the “actual” impact in November!

  195. Jim Forsyth says:

    Will there be a ” Free Manni” Rally?

  196. Ronald Fraser says:

    Robert the Truth 10.25pm

    Totally agree with every word you wrote there.

    Petra and Co will not be missed.

    The Yes Movement is better off without that Sturgeon fanatic type.

  197. Ronald Fraser says:

    Robert the Truth

    You should post more often Robert, haven’t saw you about for a while.

  198. Lizg says:

    Robert the truth @ 10.25
    It sound like your quite angry with a few of the veteran Wingers there Robert .
    Most of what you describe can also be classed as healthy robust debate and helpful pointers to other information.
    Which is exactly what the Rev is all for and has said so many times.
    All the contributors you mentioned are and have been very useful to the debate these last few years and I hardly think that rubbishing them now is helpful or entirely accurate.

  199. Lizg says:

    Ronald Fraser @ 10.40
    Well yer right there Ronald…..they’ll not be missed cause they haven’t gone all that far and are still very much players in this game …. thankfully

  200. Colin Alexander says:

    Stu Campbell

    Of course he broke the Council’s rules. There is no argument about that.

    Ghandi pled guilty to sedition against the British Empire and was sentenced to six months. He was guilty of fighting British Imperialism too.

    Ask yourself this: Why did the SNP council want the march time changed to 11am?

    To limit the number of pro-indy marchers in a city that voted YES to independence. Even though people were coming from all over Scotland to attend and would have missed an 11am start.

    The Council were supposedly worried about congestion. (Cars shouldn’t even be in the city centre anyway. It should be for pedestrians. But, that’s another issue).

    Manni’s real crime was defying SNP colonial administrators at Glasgow City Council, who are part of Sturgeon’s colonial clique, to allow pro-independence supporters to march for Scotland’s freedom.

    Ask some of your contacts about that.

    My view is you should have been praising the guy up for standing up to Sturgeon’s regime. The day may come when you will need the Manni Singhs of this world to speak up for you, when they come for you.

    Don’t think they won’t, if they think you’re a threat to British rule of Scotland.

  201. Capella says:

    @ Robert the Truth – I don’t agree but you’re welcome to your own opinion. I must have missed all that drama that you mention. Perhaps I was watching television that night.

    However, I liked their contributions and I miss them, and I want independence. So your ad hominem attacks miss the point. They just put people off. Perhaps that’s the point. It doesn’t build a supportive btl community IMO.

  202. Ronald Fraser says:

    Will AUOB organise a “Free Manni” rally.

    And to think Glasgow City Council is an SNP led administration.

    You wait years on an SNP run Glasgow Council—and the first thing they do is jail the organizer of an Independence Rally.

    Ye coudnae make it up…

  203. Big Jock says:

    Something odd that Kate Forbes said!

    She was challenged on why there was no alternative Scottish Gers to counter the UK Gers figures. McKay her predecessor had advised he was going to do it.

    She said that with Covid etc now wasn’t the time. She was pressed and someone asked. ” Well what about within the next year”

    Her answer was a hesitent:” Well a year is a long time, who knows what might happen.”.

    Probably just me, but I thought her reply suggested something is planned.

    Maybe clutching at straws.

  204. Colin Alexander says:

    Free Manni supporters would need to dress in Rangers tops, wave Union Jacks and cuddle statues of British Imperial heroes and beat up peaceful demonstrators to get the SNP Council to turn a blind eye to it.

    If they are peaceful, non-violent, non-threatening, pro-indy supporters, the Sturgeon clique SNP run Council will have them arrested pronto.

  205. boris says:

    Osowska, in a number of evasive statements to the Scottish Affairs Committee, represented them misleadingly glossing over the expensive and extensive work of a large group of (supposedly politically neutral) Civil Servants who actively supported the objectives of the “Better Together” campaign. Gross misuse of public finances and Civil Servants presumably authorized by David Cameron and Sir Jeremy Heywood.

    The political slush fund created is an ever-increasing Unionist Party financial nest egg, skimmed off Scotland’s block financial grant and abused by the Scotland Office for questionable purposes, such as Westminster Government anti-devolution leaflet production, printing, and distribution. And/or hiring Special Advisors (SpAds), often sons, daughters, other relations, friends of ministers or other MP’s.

  206. Capella says:

    @ Liz g – that’s true. I see Macart and Indyref2 are also posting on WGD.

  207. Capella says:

    TBF – I’ve noticed a remarkable absence of the more aggressive trolls tonight. I almost want to stay up late to enjoy the new atmosphere. But that would be tempting fate.

  208. Lizg says:

    Capella @ 11.46
    True and they are all so very well behaved over there too 🙂
    Wee shame that they absolutely make better rebels … lol
    We’ll just need to misbehave on their behalf 🙂

  209. Lizg says:

    Capella @ 11.56
    most likely name change time…. as regular as the phone bill and just as outrageous

  210. crazycat says:

    @ Capella at 11.18

    Robert the Truth’s description of the sequence of events is entirely correct.

    Having decided when I started posting here that I would do my best to avoid expressing opinions about posters rather than posts, I’ll leave it at that.

  211. Lizg says:

    Crazy cat @ 12.01
    I disagree… there were many…very many who had no clue about what Robert Peffers was trying to explain.
    Robert the Truths description of them is unjust, insulting and completely unnecessary.

  212. James Barr Gardner says:

    Are any of the alphabet women standing for election in 2021 ?

  213. Capella says:

    @ crazycat – I take your point. However, I did read a lot of Petra’s links and Nana’s, and Legerwood was very knowlegable about stats, and I liked Dr Jim’s humour and Robert Peffers had a lot of interesting historical knowledge.

    Thepnr did swear at the Rev so he was banned. Which is quite ironic really.

  214. Ronald Fraser says:

    Robert the Truth would never lie,,, otherwise he would be known as Robert the Liar.

    Robert the Truth posted his opinion, which I agreed with.

    Are we not allowed an opinion?

    The posters Robert the Truth referred to were dyed in the wool Sturgeon fanatics.

    They are better off on alternative websites,,, their types are not welcome on Wings, because all they do is attack the Rev for exposing Sturgeon as a fraud.

  215. CameronB Brodie says:

    OT but I get triggered by misrepresentation. Proper woke is the application of critical race theory in educational practice. It privileges “vulnerability”, which tends to be rooted in our biology. So it aims to dismantle the structural forces that maintain socio-cultural privilege. It does not empower men to invade, “safe”, female only spaces. Or seek to redefine the legal description of what it is to be a woman.

    Stay Woke! Critical Race Theory in Education Intro Seminar

  216. Bell Border Reiver says:

    WoS – Last Wo/Man standing for Independence – Keep on Trucking!

  217. CameronB Brodie says:

    And for all those who consider the content of my posts to be spam, what’s your problem with education? Do you oppose it?

    What does intersectional feminism actually mean?

    You may have heard the phrases ‘intersectionality’ or ‘intersectional feminism’ cropping up more and more lately. Intersectionality has recently taken on more space in public discussions about feminism, but it’s not new – even if it was only added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary last year.

    It defines intersectionality as “the complex, cumulative manner in which the effects of different forms of discrimination combine, overlap, or intersect”. To break that down, it essentially means that discrimination doesn’t exist in a bubble – different kinds of prejudice can be amplified in different ways when put together.

    It’s a critical concept, but one that some people find confusing.

    Here’s where it all began, how it’s used today, and why it matters to our work.

  218. Capella says:

    @ Robert Fraser 12.21 – you provide the perfect case study.
    First you assert that everyone is entitled to have an opinion. Then you demand that some people should be prevented from expressing their opinion. Brilliant.

  219. Lizg says:

    Ronald Fraser @ 12.21
    Well presumably we all are but it’s the Rev that’d confirm it fur ye.
    Contact button works fine…or so I’m told
    As to yer own facts…that’s a whole other conversation don’t ye think?

  220. ben madigan says:

    Interesting article explaining how, over time

    “Independence could not be ditched, but it was parked coming at the bottom of the SNP’s list of priorities”.

    “The SNP was gradually transformed from a self-governing institution into a centralised machine around a dominant single leader”.

    “the SNP has undergone a reverse reformation, lost its presbyterian democratic credentials and transformed into a hierarchical institution in which leadership infallibility is accepted, even if privately doubted, by many of the faithful”.,comment-the-snp-diluted-its-radicalism-with-the-prospect-of-government

  221. Ronald Fraser says:

    What do ya mean Liz g

    Why do ya write like a half wit?

    I seem to have captured your unwelcome attention Liz g

    Dontcha think so dude???

    Ye just gotta laugh,

    Watcha all about lizg???

    Are you Petra by any chance???

    If so, take your problem up with Robert the Truth,,,

    Dontcha know!!!

  222. crazycat says:

    @ liz g at 12.11

    I was explicitly referring to the sequence of events described by R the T.

    I made no comment about his opinions, and I’m not going to do so now.

  223. Lizg says:

    ben madigan @ 12.29
    Thanks Ben will take a look, but what always surprises me it that people can’t seem to reconcile that to win political power in the U.K. The SNP had to become a U.K. Political party!
    It’s what they are and it’s what they will do.
    Labour was the successful political party in this end of the island, so it’s no exactly all that surprising that the SNP operate in that framework.
    To force them to act on the promise of independence will most likely take a push from us, fortunately there’s a lot better odds of that happening than there ever was making British Labour keep to their promises

  224. Stan Broadwood says:

    We are entering the witching hour.

    This is when some posters has consumed too much alcohol and they don’t realise they are making an arse of themselves.

    Sometimes it’s better to power down the laptop and have an early night.

    Otherwise you start talking utter bollocks and become the laughing stock of Wings.

  225. Polly says:

    @ Capella

    Hi again, Capella. I may have seemed too pejorative in my response but I never singled her out specifically in that ‘pique’ comment (not fit of pique). I meant it in general terms to all the old guard because they ‘no longer like the tone’ here. I meant they felt offence/annoyance, which obviously they must have to leave like that. I meant no insult to anyone. Saying I meant all old guard though may make any insult worse rather than better, if you see insult in it.

    I did single your acquaintance out in one way only, and that was only because reading that comment written about WBB the other day I was pointing out even some who left (banned, thanks Liz g) were still looking to Wings to be a great help when the time comes. That was all. But I reiterate had everyone followed that ‘principled stand’ you feel they took then Wings would have no readers, commentators, funders, no means to help independence at any future date.

    But on that you didn’t answer the question of how can you, while agreeing with most of Wings criticisms of SNP, still prefer he doesn’t write about it? If there are problems, which you acknowledge, why not address them? It seems a classic case of shooting the messenger because you hate the message, even though you know it is truth. Is the truth about SNP policy really ‘open hostility’?

  226. Polly says:

    @ Stoker

    Thank you for the link, it’s not one I had got to yet.

  227. MaggieC says:

    I see that Leslie Evans has been called back to give further evidence to the Scot Gov Harrasment Committee inquiry as well as the Lord Advocate on Tuesday 8th Sept ,

    Latest letter to Leslie Evans ,

    Letter to Lord Advocate ,

    As this Tues 1st Sept it’s two representatives from Civil Service Unions ,

    Get the popcorn out for a week on Tuesday .

  228. Lizg says:

    Crazy Cat @ 12.49
    Unfortunately the way the “sequence ” is portrayed it’s is so loaded by innuendo it’s almost impossible to separate out the two.

    E.G. Ledgerwoods responce to Petras bann did indeed come after said bann in the sequence ’tis true……. but a “flounce” is a whole other statement giving a wrong and therefore inaccurate description of the event….. which is why I disagree that it was an accurate description while having even less interest in Roberts motivations than your good self.

    But I totally understand and agree we’ve run out of road on this and we can save the semantics of it for the next night out 🙂
    I’m having to pretty much call it a night now anyway….. 🙂

  229. Tannadice Boy says:

    Thanks but it isn’t unfortunate we have to drag these people to account.

  230. Lizg says:

    Stan Broadwood 12.56
    Eh … Stan that’s 12.56 man…
    So unless yer no actually in Britain the Witching hour has been well and truly entered 50 odd minutes ago 🙂
    If you actually are on this island…… mibbi a wee bit of yer own advice there wouldn’t go amiss Aye !

  231. Beaker says:

    Stan, I don’t drink. I don’t need artificial aids to talk bollocks 🙂

  232. Polly says:


    You say many you know refuse to deliver or touch WBB now? Why? Because wings criticised present SNP failure to push for Indy? Or criticism of GRA? Do they know about GRA? What do those snp activist there feel about that? Well if many are so sniffy we’ll lose again. I remember hearing a redheaded green did similar in 2014. I understand not all yessers/members are willing/able to be active and getting folk to help is a problem, but if those who are active chose to disown any help or means of gaining independence provided to them simply to deliver something when they deliver other leaflets then they’re a hindrance in their way too.

    I’m one of the ones activists like you would dislike, been happy before to pay my dues, contribute now and then to Indy sites, go to occasional meeting/march, but leave the drudgery to you. Since I know good number of yessers, saw rise in support in 2011, realised (without wings help) how news was lies and the coming reality of brexit, I wrongly assumed most others would see that too and vote yes. I got England right but Scotland wrong. I will try to be more activist next time if next time ever comes, if lockdown ever really ends. It took the abuse of Joan McAlpine from within the party being allowed by the leader to make me feel I should have been more involved. It’s listening to petty squabbles or purity vetoes now make me despair. There’s a place for all and all will have their appeal to someone, just don’t diss the rest. All the prevarication by SNP has led to malaise so no wonder there’s no community spirit. Hopefully it will come back when we have something to aim for.

  233. MaggieC says:

    Tannadice Boy @ 1.12 am

    What’s interesting this time is this from the letter ,

    To inform this session, the Committee also repeats its request from its letter dated 11 August:
    “..the Committee asks for elaboration on [the SG] position in the judicial review statement “that documents which form part of the court process in relation to the judicial review are the property of the Court and cannot be disclosed by the Scottish Government, unless they are already in the public domain”. The Committee seeks a breakdown of the documents withheld, including those forming part of the process of the case and in each case the Government’s understanding on any restrictions in providing it to the Committee.”
    As you are aware the Committee has also sought documents from Alex Salmond, and where these documents cannot be shared for example due to an associated court order, the Committee has sought details of the type of documents that come into this category. This includes documents provided to the judicial review by the Government. Given the lack of documentation provided by the Scottish Government, the Committee is also now actively exploring whether specific documents not bound by the associated court order, can be accessed directly from the courts if required.

    Hopefully the committee will now start to dig deeper into how Alex was set up and then we might get people to realise exactly what went on and who did it within the Scot Gov and the Snp .

  234. holymacmoses says:

    What I don’t understand is why Nicola Richards was in contact with the police on 12th December about setting up their new policy

  235. Macart says:

    @ Capella 11.46pm

    Still here Capella. 🙂 Never left tbh. Simply stopped commenting so much because I’d run out of useful stuff to say. (Shrugs) That and life interrupts kinda thing.

    I pop into O/T to say hi to chums every now and again, but mostly I just read on a good few sites these days. There’s plenty of bods posting comments on existing sites and most interested folk are aware of the sources available these days.

    As always, people will gravitate to where they feel comfortable in reading, commenting and general atmosphere. They always have done and always will do.

    The rest is human nature… 🙂

  236. Capella says:

    @ Macart – Hi, great to hear from you. You’re so refreshingly calm and measured – but I find it hard to believe you don’t have much to say. However, keeping your own counsel in these turbulent times is very wise!

  237. Peter A Bell says:


    Excellent comment!

  238. Capella says:

    @ Polly – where to start to begin – I have never said Stu should not criticise SNP policy or leadership. I draw the line at conspiracy theories where the evidence can’t be made public for legal reasons. Once the facts are out in the open, then I will know what’s true and false. So far nothing I’ve read adds up to a plot involving Nicola Sturgeon.

    Sometimes the facts are never made public, not yet anyway. We still don’t know who killed JFK. Nor Willie Macrae. Hilda Morrell, David Kelly…

    So I still depend on the balance of probabilities. Cui bono. (Apparently saying Cui Bono means I’m a Russian bot according to Ben Nimmo. Perhaps he meant Roman bot). What possible motive would someone have, at the top of their career, for framing someone not even an MP or MSP. But I can think of other dark actors who will benefit in spades.

    I’m guessing that Alex Salmond has said something convincing. AS will be giving evidence to the Holyrood committee. So will NS and PM. So I will listen with interest.

  239. LeggyPeggy says:

    Polly @ 1.32 am

    “ It took the abuse of Joan McAlpine from within the party being allowed by the leader to make me feel I should have been more involved . “

    Also remember that Joanna Cherry was subjected to the same abuse by many members and some of them are also members of the NEC and affiliated groups and for other officials to do nothing about it when many members complained is really disgusting .

  240. Macart says:

    @ Capella

    ‘calm and measured’ Not so much. It’s an act. 😀

  241. Republicofscotland says:

    “He already entered a guilty plea. He wasn’t sentenced to imprisonment, but refused to accept a lesser penalty and so left the judge no option.”

    What about a fine,and a small one at that, I agree with Craig Murray in that, that should’ve been the course of action.

  242. Capella says:

    @ Macart – well you’ve perfected it. 🙂

  243. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Manni’s real crime was defying SNP colonial administrators at Glasgow City Council, who are part of Sturgeon’s colonial clique, to allow pro-independence supporters to march for Scotland’s freedom.

    Ask some of your contacts about that.

    My view is you should have been praising the guy up for standing up to Sturgeon’s regime. The day may come when you will need the Manni Singhs of this world to speak up for you, when they come for you.

    Don’t think they won’t, if they think you’re a threat to British rule of Scotland.”

    Hahahahaha. Don’t know if you’ve noticed, but Wings has been in quite a few situations in the last few years where a bit of support from the rest of the Yes movement would have been nice, and AUOB has been conspicuous by its silence every time, just like the rest of them. It’s been made clear to us that we wouldn’t be welcome at any of their marches, which is fine by me because from everything I hear about them they’re a shady outfit, which Manni Singh himself has now fallen out with.

    As it happens I entirely agree with your sentiment about who’s responsible for his prosecution, and I’ve repeatedly said his sentence was excessive – he’s clearly no danger to the public so community service would have made much more sense than a curfew order. But a curfew order – a pretty mild thing – is what he got and he refused it, and not one judge alive on Earth is ever going to respond to that with anything other than incarceration.

    It’s the absolute height of naive stupidity to imagine they’d turn round and go “Oh, okay then, would a fine be okay with you, Mr Singh?” That’s not how judges work. As a species, they take very badly to being defied.

  244. Grouse Beater says:

    “Wings has been in quite a few situations in the last few years where a bit of support from the rest of the Yes movement would have been nice.”

    For my own part, I wrote three acerbic articles in defence of Wings before wondering if I should set up a separate site entitled ‘Wing Nuts’, so often are you under viscous attack from the deranged. I still finds myself batting off egregious insults aimed at Wings – and without expecting reciprocal support.

    Your unwanted scrapes attract many a tweet expressing outrage at your opponents tactics. That aside, the silence of others cannot be interpreted as a point of view.

    You give as good as you get, though subtlety isn’t your middle name. You even berate your readers with warning of ‘hammers’!

    Stay cool, and more power to your ragged elbow.

  245. Colin Alexander says:

    Stu Campbell

    I know you’ve been through hell recently.

    If you feel others could have done more to support Wings and you personally, then who am I to say differently? I’m no surprised you are cheesed off about that.

    What I would say, is whatever has happened in the past, we should now stand by Manni and any other brothers or sisters in the independence movement who face persecution from the colonial SNP and UK state.

    The things that bind us together should be stronger than differences of opinions etc that have previously caused divisions.

    Craig Murray says he doesn’t see eye to eye with Manni in many ways either, but he’s spoken out in support of Manni.

    I’m no going into what Sheriff’s will accept. That’s irrelevant. The fundamental point is Manni should not have been reported to the Police by SNP politicians in the first place, especially when they didn’t ask for all the other recent Glasgow George Square and Glasgow Green protesters to be prosecuted, even though they broke Covid lockdown rules, which is a danger to our health.

    You have devoted much time to discussing the prosecution of Craig Murray compared to MSM reporters who have not been prosecuted. The similarity is blatantly obvious.

    Even if others have let you down in the past, show yourself to be the better man, let bygones be bygones, and show support for Manni or any other non-violent indy supporter who faces adversity.

    We don’t all have to become best of pals but, we should stand united against the greater enemy in the fight for Scotland’s freedom.

  246. holymacmoses says:

    Wings – when you’re feeling down about what posters recommend to you, remember that ‘Holy Willie’s Prayer’ was written as satire by a great, great man who was being driven to his grave by the misconceptions and, often, down-right inhumanity of his fellow Scots:-). Burns was incalcitrant enough to maintain both his ethics and his talent until his death by applying his sense of humour.

    Take care and, particularly, take care of yourself.

    Mr Cairns is wielding a very subtle knife these days.

  247. Polly says:

    @ Capella

    I can somewhat see your point about awaiting proof for your own eyes, though given two different bloggers you follow say they do believe it, that seems to me just a tad stubborn to dsmiss any talk of it as being out of hand, especially when Salmond himself said enough after the trial that he did intend to make it known. I said somewhere about Stuart being bloodyminded but perhaps he’s not the only one, since it seems especially stubborn and disbelieving when you can also say folk left because ‘They were not willing to tolerate the open hostility to the SNP and the party leader.’ and you designate those who left as being ‘principled’. If – big if I know, since the inquiry being hampered by the alphabet blackout – but if enough can come out to show present leadership involved then the ‘principled’ terminology actually gets turned around.

    If the ‘open hostility’ you mean comes not from articles here themselves but new posters who filled places left by your principled old guard then I’m not sure what to say, since I’m one of those new posters and don’t believe I’ve indulged in any conspiracy. The criticisms I’ve made of the present leadership are generally on the failure to call out the abuse suffered by Joan McAlpine, which is demonstrably true and I’m also rather perplexed that you yourself don’t call that out more, or that you can still have such faith despite that. There’s no conspiracy there, the party members and hangers on behaved deplorably and leadership took no action at all so I’m unsure how criticism of that kind could be considered anything but justified. If what you mean though is some comments of a personal nature towards Sturgeon then there I agree that kind of personal invective should never be made. I doubt we’ll agree any further than that on this, so will wish you a good weekend. Take care.

  248. Polly says:

    @ LeggyPeggy

    Yes indeed, Joanna Cherry too. Though in some ways the abuse of Joan McAlpine was far worse and more shocking since it came first, I feel was more vicious, and considering she was reading a statement from the committee. Many other women and some men have also suffered from those people and it should never have been allowed to happen by the leadership.

    @ holymacmoses

    It was a great poem that. 🙂

  249. leither says:

    Polly says:
    29 August, 2020 at 1:32 am
    I’m one of the ones activists like you would dislike..
    Polly, you seem to think I was taking a pop at folk who are less active than me?

    I spend a lot of time out of the country so i am much less active than i would wish to be.

    activists are less numerous than members and members less numerous than voters

    This should be bloody obvious to everyone.

    Since all activities are carried out by volunteers, all activists have to accept that some folk are less active than others. eg, if i organise a leaflet run on a wed evening and only half the people i expect turn up, if I say to them the following wed, “where the fuck were you”? it is very likely no one will ever turn up ever again.

    Also Polly, some people are better employed in other things other than leafleting, eg, blogging, posting, public speaking, or @roguecoder crowd funding the cash right here, ordering 10000 yes flags from china and distributing to the various yes groups across scotland, the selling of which became the biggest source of funding for all the yes groups.

    Also, activists like yourself, who post and repost on social media articles worth reading and crowdfunding ops are also an important form of activism

    But here’s a story Polly, in 2011, before the holyrood election, the snp central office asked all the branches how many leaflets they thought they would need for the campaign. They were blown away by the response. 1.5 million!!. We organised the delivery, co-ordinated the distribution and then we posted them through the letterboxes.

    we won the election. over the next 12 months we morphed from the local snp branch into the local yes branch. in 2012, the first yes scotland leaflet was delivered to us. it took 4 months to deliver to every door in the constituency.

    Who else could/did organise this? the postman? Blair Jenkins?
    It was also us who distributed wbb1 in this constituency.
    I’ve been doing this intensively for 9 years now, I know personally of all the activist who do canvas and deliver leaflets for both the snp and yes. they are the same people.

    they are all snp. If you know of any other group of activists in my constituency willing to deliver yes leaflets, please tell me?

    You say many you know refuse to deliver or touch WBB now? Why?

    many would agree with you about gra, nicola etc but if only half are willing to distribute wbb2, then we can only deliver half as many as we did of wbb1. pretty obvious no?

    So, every time someone here says they hate the snp and Nicola is “the dyke from dreghorn” or “that fucking bitch” or that they will never vote snp ever again……

    just remember that it is the snp activists in my constituency that I will need to ask to deliver wbb2.

    Do you really think they will all say Yes??

    my constituency isnt unique

  250. Kevin Kennedy says:

    The loss of momentum was inevitable, and is desirable to NS who is comfortable with devolved power. Indy is good votebait though.

  251. ian stewart says:

    ” between its careerist, devolutionist woke wing and those who are actually focused on independence ”

    When were you last focused on Independence Stu ?

  252. David says:

    I don’t visit wings nearly as often as I used to and I don’t recommend it any more. The Wings Twitter behaviour really turned me off. The final straw was when the the CEO decided that he could publish his block list and make it available to those followers he hadn’t yet blocked so that they could also block everybody on his list without having to think for themselves. Far too creepily cultish for me. Maybe see you in a month or so. Maybe.

  253. Camz says:

    Just putting in a touch of caution in your figures (which I can’t or won’t doubt, as I have no research or basis to do so).

    Some sites don’t register with these stat sites unless they want to. It’s quite possible to keep a site free from the unwanted crawlers (e.g. archiving sites), while pushing for good traffic via search engines.

    Why? They maybe don’t have the traffic allowance to let some crawlers hammer the site.

    On the Indy front, I, like others are just waiting for the nod. There’s little point in half a hundred other sites, all replicating each other, and frankly although web traffic might be down, polling VI looks better than ever.

    Perhaps there comes a point when Indy-convinced folk aren’t using the pro-Indy sites, cos they’re already convinced. Maximum saturation?

  254. Polly says:

    @ leither

    You took me too literally in ‘ones activists like you would dislike’, I wasn’t insinuating bad motive, certainly not that you were having a pop at me/would berate non active members – catch more flies with honey than vinegar I know. I meant a natural feeling ‘why is it always the same people volunteering!’ you’d be inhuman not to feel that. I know a couple of activist now I understand the feeling wishing more would help. I admire people who have spent long years active, as you say ‘intensively for 9 years’. I take my hat off to all for that commitment and activists going back decades even more. I’m no online activist either. I’ve not had any online presence for years. I read widely, keep up to date, true, but this is the first time I’ve been active anywhere in a while and I think you can see why twitter isn’t my medium.

    But the excuse you make for fellows activists being unwilling even to touch WBB because statements ‘dreghorn dyke’, ‘Sturgeon bitch’ – tell me when has the author of this blog ever said those things? I’ve not found them. Capella made complaint of a poster here saying similar, I agreed with her and you, it’s unacceptable. Stuart also said the same but relied on people pointing it out, via contact. So despite complaining now about it Capella or you can’t have complained to him at the time. He’s criticised SNP recently, you think that wasn’t justified? GRA HCB which many members, even more voters detest? But if the reason you say activists have for being unwilling to even handle WBB, accusing him of something he never said? Well…

    And if they refuse because they call him a transphobe? then it’s part of your branch which is some of the problem for the SNP – and for many voters in Scotland too. Or perhaps they’re holy willies like the red headed green who refused any help from wings in 2014 even though this blog was vehemently staunch in support of the party at that time? then I repeat, if those who are active chose to disown any help or means of gaining independence provided to them then they’re as much a hindrance as folk like me who didn’t turn up at all last time, maybe even more so. That sniffiness to working with some on our own side will see us lose again. The other side don’t turn up their nose or alienate any help given, the OO march didn’t harm them before. If we want to win this time we must do similar, accept any help to win, appeal to as wide an electorate as possible. If we’re not all in it to win independence for all who support independence then maybe we deserve to lose. I don’t want to lose again. Quite honestly I detest the ones who abused Joan McAlpine but I would work alongside even them in a run up to another referendum to win independence. If they wouldn’t work with me then they’re the problem.

  255. I’ve blogged a reply on Arc of Prosperity.

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