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The elephants outside

Posted on November 28, 2020 by

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  1. 28 11 20 07:56

    The elephants outside | speymouth

  2. 29 11 20 16:48

    The elephants outside –

144 to “The elephants outside”

  1. A Person says:

    Very true, great cartoon.

    All kicking off according to this morning’s interview with Joanna Cherry in the Times…

  2. Effijy says:

    The door is certainly jammed shut on Alex
    But Ruth opened up the Door to the Boris she
    could never work with on hearing the magic words

    Bare arsed sycophant !

  3. susanXX says:

    National tractors, both of them.

  4. Intractable Potsherd says:

    @SusanXX – What’s a “national tractor”? It’s so difficult to know the difference between euphemism and autocorrect these days!

  5. aulbea1 says:

    Both tractors employed by the british state.

  6. Ian says:

    ‘We need to talk about independence’ – enter Joanna Cherry

    Behind a paywall but you’ll get the gist.

  7. Breeks says:

    Tractor is the unofficial word for “t rait-0r” which often doesn’t make it past profanity filters.

  8. Breeks says:

    Times article archived….

  9. Intractable Potsherd says:

    Thanks, Breeks! It’s obvious once it’s pointed out. I didn’t realise “trait–” was a word to be censored – very odd.

  10. kapelmeister says:

    Great toon. The Devo Divas struggling to pretend that it’s Holyrood business as usual. The people realising it’s becoming a straight choice between indy or vassalage.
    The doors of perception.

  11. Ottomanboi says:

    Breeks & Intractable
    Auld Scottis wirdis Tratour and Tratourheid?
    Betrayer perhaps? Combine harvester? Rogues and deceivers?

  12. Muscleguy says:

    Much appreciated there Breeks. Well done.

  13. Astonished says:

    ” Indy or vassalage ” – brilliant.

    I hope the SNP are not contemplating paying this Cam guy’s ( the block who tweeted about a bar, identified the wrong person and called an organization a hate group) legal fees ?

    To all the wokeratti: Words have meanings and you can’t continue to abuse the language to quell dissent.

    P.S. To Alyn Smith I expect you to foot your legal fees and compensation payments – Not the SNP members. So a wee cheque to party coffers might be appropiate.

    P.P.S. Mr Murrell the same goes for you.

  14. Rick H Johnston says:

    What Joanna said in the Times needed saying big time.
    I hope she gets on and shakes up the new NEC.
    Not so sure about her support for Salmond.
    Joanna is IMO capable of bringing the party together. We’ll need unifying characters in the months leading into the May election.
    She’d be the obvious choice to mount a legal case for a referendum should Johnson keep saying NO.

  15. Ottomanboi says:

    MEN! they’re so PUSHY!
    We need the heavies, quick fetch Alyn and Ross.

  16. Daisy Walker says:

    Brilliant cartoon. Shows unjust how cosy NS has become with the opposition.

    I’ve just paid a visit to Iain Lawson’s Yours for Scotland site – very good.

    I did not realise that the SNP Conference had been nobbled to such an extent that they’ve removed (at short notice and without consultation) the Remit Back option when voting for motions. Deliberately altering or removing the levers by which the party was grass roots democratic and answerable to its members.

    I deeply appreciate those still within the SNP who are attempting to save it, by voting accordingly. I hope you are successful, but my good you’ve got an uphill struggle and the game gets more rigged by the day.

  17. Morgatron says:

    Thanks for posting Joanna’s times interview Breeks. Very interesting and its all coming out in the open now. Ding Ding.

  18. David Ferguson says:

    Breeks says:
    28 November, 2020 at 8:07 am

    Tractor is the unofficial word for “t rait-0r” which often doesn’t make it past profanity filters…

    Dammit Breeks you spoiled my opportunity to say “I can c what a “tractor” is…”

  19. Cenchos says:

    A pair of old John Deeres.

  20. Frank Waring says:

    Funniest and cleverest Chris Cairns cartoon in living memory. And ‘The elephants outside’ is a whole basket of cherries on top.

  21. Andy Ellis says:


    Imagine where the Yes movement and indeed the party might be today if Joanna Cherry was leader, and the TRA extremists were just the sophomoric nutter fringe nobody really listened to?

    The next few weeks may prove to be pivotal not just for the soul of the SNP (which is frankly their own business) but more importantly for the prospects of securing independence this decade.

    If the outcome of the upcoming vote is not a thorough clear out of Woko Haram elements from the NEC and preferably party as a whole, hard questions have to be asked of people like Joanna Cherry, Kenny MacAskill and those who agree with them. There is no point trying to render an SNP which has been totally captured by an unsavoury cabal fit for purpose: if the party has no appetite to change – indeed sees those advocating for change as “other”, labels them as transphobes, and insists “there is no debate” – what is the point of staying inside the party?

  22. Graf Midgehunter says:

    Intractable Potsherd says: 7:41 am

    @SusanXX – What’s a “national tractor”? It’s so difficult to know the difference between euphemism and autocorrect these days!
    Have you never heard of “Tractors Gate” at the Tower of London?

  23. Kenny says:

    Great drawing, Chris, witty, but hard-hitting. There are, as you’ll recognise, pro-indy folk who’ll not ‘get’ that drawing – none-so-blind types. No matter, keep doing that thing.

    Enjoyed reading Joanna’s confident, bullish statements, Breeks, ta.

    I’m impatient. I just wish something genuinely major would happen that would bolster the whole movement again, galvanise and steel us as we approach a cold, hard Winter – and a colder, harder Brexit. However, the bold Sturgeon appears determined to clutch onto the abused power she must know is being slowly wrest from her. She can’t keep that door slammed indefinitely – Salmond, Cherry and a host of others are forcing it open, and she knows it.

  24. Heaver says:

    Intractable Potsherd says:
    28 November, 2020 at 8:13 am
    Thanks, Breeks! It’s obvious once it’s pointed out. I didn’t realise “trait–” was a word to be censored – very odd.

    I guess that word is on the slippery slope to talk of judicially sanctioned murder of tractors, or even mob murder. Best avoided.

  25. Colin Alexander says:

    In the SNP Agenda, See Page 16, lines 44 to 53 of the resolution.

    Basically, if there is a pro-indy majority AFTER the May 2021 election and the UK continue to veto an indyref they will have a talk about alternative routes to a legal referendum.

    Oh well, at least it proves Sturgeon does have a sense of humour after all. It made me laugh anyway.

  26. Contrary says:

    Woah, that Times article shows Joanna Cherry to be openly criticising Nicola Sturgeon – that looks like a direct challenge to me. Is the fight (politically) now on? It seems like a very significant event to me anyway.

    Interesting that Joanna Cherry totally ignores the s.30 case that’s currently in play in the courts (22nd January I think, 2 day hearing, 2021). I can’t think of any reason, significant as it is, for her not to mention it while talking about plan b’s and legal grounds etc.

    I’d prefer to not have another lawyer in charge personally, but anything is better than what we currently have,,, well, I mean, from within the SNP, obviously I don’t mean Ruth Davidson, or Alex Cole-Hamilton – or would those be at least known enemies? Ugh, between a rock and a hard place. I mean anything that truly supports independence is better than what we currently have! 😉

  27. Republicofscotland says:

    Nice one Chris.

    I get the feeling Sturgeon is playing on both sides of the field with her announcement on the indyfront.

    She announced her intention to hold a second indyref in the earlier part of her next tenure if the SNP are successful. Then she said, I’ve not put a date on it yet, I have not ruled it in nor have I ruled it out.

    Then she said before the election in the manifesto I would anticipate a more precise time scale on what we believe should happen.

    She must name the date of the indyref to put minds at ease, everything else is just talk.

  28. Sharny Dubs says:

    Cheers Breeks! Finally Joanna makes a move, let’s give her all the support we can.

    Just received the annual St Andrews day SNP begging letter. Good timing! I needed some kinilling!

    Along with the begging letter is the SNPs Christmas card, no mention of independence and the way the Postie folded it there’s a big crease right down the middle of NS face.

    Kind of apt.

  29. Kenny says:

    Should be noted that Cherry’s been misquoted, by The Times;

    In today’s (Times) interview with me there is a significant error in re the attempt by a small group on SNP NEC to deselect me as an MP last September. I was grateful to (Sturgeon)at the time for stepping in to prevent this. She acted appropriately..

  30. Astonished says:

    In case anyone is unaware :

    “A letter to the Scottish Green Party, the Scottish Liberal Democrats and the SNP

    To whom it may concern
    I am sad, afraid and angry that as a woman in 2020 I feel compelled to write to a political party in these terms. To the extent that members of your Party are involved in the document I discuss below, I would be grateful if you would conduct urgent investigation into their behaviour in light of the risk of harm it causes to women such as myself.
    On November 27th a number of people posted to the social media site Twitter a document headed a ‘Call to Action. This was written by:
    a group of trans and/or non-binary people who have come together from across Scotland’s political spectrum to highlight the crisis of inaction on transphobic abuse in our parties.
    It asks for signatories which include:
    Patrick Harvie MSP — the Scottish Green Party
    Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP — the Scottish Liberal Democrats
    Stewart McDonald MP — the SNP
    The ‘call to action’ went on to refer to:
    Recent examples of social media posts allegedly undermining Trans Day of Remembrance from a councillor and revelations regarding an MP funding what is known as a hate group are more recent causes of concern.
    This refers directly to a tweet by David Paisley who identifies as a Scottish actor with 27.k followers. He is referring to a donation made by Joanna Cherry QC to my crowdfunder where I am attempting to raise money to take action in judicial review against the College of Policing and Wiltshire Police, against the decision to record my protected political speech around the immutability of sex as a ‘hate incident’.
    I am a member of the campaigning organisation Fair Cop which is comprised of gender critical lawyers, former police officers, writers & professionals, dedicated to upholding Articles 8–11 ECHR.
    Fair Cop is manifestly not a ‘hate group’ and therefore I am not a member of ‘hate group’. Discussion of the laws of the UK are protected political speech as confirmed by Knowles J in Miller v College of Policing .
    I am a barrister and therefore a member of a regulated profession. If people genuinely believed I was ‘hateful’ I would expect to be arrested and disbarred from my profession. Attempts to smear a female politician for donating to my legitimate crowd funding, on the basis of my membership of Fair Cop, is not merely absurd, it is dangerous.
    I have been repeatedly named by Mr Paisely in a series of tweets to which I was offered no right of reply as Mr Paisely has blocked my Twitter account from interacting with his. His false and malicious assertions have then been embedded into this ‘Call to Action’ which has also been widely circulated. This puts me — and I assume Ms Cherry — at actual risk of harm, given the nature and extent of the messages I have now been receiving which threaten me with sexual and physical violence and make derogatory comments about my appearance and my age.
    The signatories to this ‘Call for Action’ thus offer their unquestioning approval to a malicious and baseless attack upon a serving member of the Scottish National Party, Ms Joanna Cherry QC and a named individual in England — me.
    To the extent that the signatories to this letter are members of your party, I trust you will take the necessary action to indicate your disapproval of such tactics which are in themselves hateful, have no place in any modern democracy and which put me and other women at direct risk of actual physical harm.
    I will continue to monitor the messages I receive. Should they continue or escalate, I consider this will be a matter for the police.
    Given the nature of my concerns and my possible need to involve the police, I would be grateful for your urgent response.
    Sarah Phillimore.”

    I support Sarah Phillimore. I will only add that, as a SNP member, I demand that stewart mcdonald MP is expelled from the party. There is no place for this hate in politics or life.

    I do hope others support Sarah Phillimore too.

  31. Ottomanboi says:

    Perhaps we ought forget the referendum shtick and concentrate on the thing itself, national independence, sovereignty and authentic democracy.
    As long as the referendum ‘idée fixe’ prevails the farther down the road the can is kicked by the procrastinating ‘leadership’.
    The stasis has to be broken by something seismic,
    and that should come from the ‘demos’ not the politicians supposed to represent its interests.
    Sturgeon and her clan are just too British.
    We need to cut free of the cultural strait-jacket.

  32. Meg merrilees says:

    Oh dear!
    I just received a St Andrew’s day card from Nicola this morning. It shows her at an ice rink.
    My first reaction was ‘OH OH, not a good look, she’s skating on thin ice!’

    Then I used Colin Alexander’s link to the Conference doc and the first picture shows you wind turbines… ‘ Oh oh, not a good look, this will be a lot of hot air!’

    Is it just me or am I seeing a subliminal theme here?

  33. Doug says:

    SNP leadership desperately playing for time – again.

    The SNP’s depute leader [Keith Brown] says a new independence referendum should take place late next year if it’s safe to do so.

    “If it’s safe to do so” FFS!

  34. A Person says:


    Look out for pictures of shoogly pegs as well!


    I spotted that too. It really is so transparent!

  35. Bob Mack says:

    As predicted when the National Conference comes around for the upcoming elections we are teased with promises of a referendum though no specified date.

    Some time in the future which in effect means when Boris says yes.

    Perhaps when circumstances allow, or when a pig can overtake an F35 at mach2.

    We are being played yet again by liars.

    What is really interesting is the panic among Wishart,Nicholson et al about the lists circulating naming the good guys to vote for at conference.

    They seem really concerned about this.

  36. Meg merrilees says:

    Heaver @ 10.37

    The law on treachery is not devolved therefore it is legislated on by Westminster. As recently as 1998 you could be executed so I guess we have to be careful. There are probably libel laws to be considered also.

  37. ScotsRenewables says:

    That’s me voted for all the Good Guys at the NEC elections. Fingers crossed.

  38. Daisy Walker says:

    I support Sarah Phillimore, and should legal action be taken against SNP members or staff for their personal comments on this subject, I would strongly urge members to ensure that their subs are not paying for the legal fees incurred.

    The Fair Cop web site is an super resource of information regarding this ongoing threat to females.

  39. Grey Gull says:

    Meg @12.12
    I got a Christmas card from Nicola this morning too. (Look at me ice skating! That woman has no shred of humility left) The card has gone straight to the recycling. Enclosed was a begging letter asking for money to help with campaigning for the election next year, saying something like “it’ll be the most important one blah, blah. Heard it all before. I’ve just written my thoughts on the shambles the SNP have become on the back of the form and will post it back in their SAE. I’m sure it won’t make the slightest bit of difference but at least it’s made me feel better!

  40. Stuart MacKay says:

    Lofty stuff from Grouse Beater, but well worth your time to read.

    Are we on the Edge of Darkness or the dawn of a new Enlightenment? Do we fall into chaos or step forward and show the world what a modern, properous, confident nation looks like?

  41. Sarah says:

    ON Topic: speaker against the first motion has been suspended from the party….before speaking, of course. The vote was taken on the motion without hearing any speakers against.

  42. Effijy says:

    Shill Neil Oliver has a multi page spread in the Daily Hail about
    How he is British.
    The money he earns selling out Scotland and changing
    Our history must be phenomenal.

    Let’s hope it enough for him to live down in London out of our sight.

    That Dick Leonard is in for a quick comment about how an independent
    Scotland would have run up massive debts due to Covid?

    Don’t you just wonder what he calls the hundreds of Billions Westminster
    Has racked up in Covid debt that adds up on top of the Trillions they
    Had already racked up.

    Be aware that when Labours vote falls yet again and Dick gets his pension
    His replacement must show some growth even if it’s just by persuading
    their family to vote for them.

  43. boris says:

    The SNP is a Movement Not a Plaything For Politicians to Abuse – Part 2

    Effective political strategy is usually revealed after the event nullifying any opposition. But the SNP under the leadership of Nicola Sturgeon and her supporters are so confident of their absolute control and that any challenges to their political agenda can be first contained then eliminated.

    A number of vociferous individuals in the “Sturgeonista Group” only joined the Party within the last ten years and their pedigree and political affiliation are questionable.

  44. Stuart MacKay says:

    Meg merrilees @12:12pm

    It’s not hot air but instead it’s the icy, wind of change blowing for Nicola.

  45. The Isolator says:

    Fantastic as always Chris.Alex on his way back you say?Stand aside Sturgeon, real strategist coming through.

  46. David Ferguson says:

    Folk receiving begging letters from Sturgeon should return them with a card saying that their donation is “woven through the envelope”.

  47. Graeme says:

    David Ferguson says:
    28 November, 2020 at 1:51 pm

    Folk receiving begging letters from Sturgeon should return them with a card saying that their donation is “woven through the envelope”.

    Brilliant idea

  48. Contrary says:

    Time Rideout’s currency group has arranged a conference, on the economy, Plan B, and discussing things that should have been discussed at the SNP conference – using the Hopin platform,

    (The tweet with the link is on the blog post – this old iPad doesn’t do Twitter very well any more)

    Sunday morning – tomorrow – at 10.45am for anyone interested. It’s a good line up!

  49. Robert Graham says:

    Like many i used to make a point of tuning in and following the party conference

    At £25.00 quid a look at the same pish being rolled out since 2014 six bleedn years of what ? S F A and spread over what is it 2 -3 days that £25.00 buys my Christmas dinner so no contest

    A quote on one of the Unionist channels Nicola Sturgeon we have never been closer to Independence HA HA I bet that raised a laugh with Bawjaws the English PM

    Eh maybe clear up the small item of Bawjaws telling you to Duck off sweetie ,or is that just a mere formality HA HA aye the old ones are the best ones I bet that brought the house down

  50. Tannadice Boy says:

    @The Isolator
    I notice Alex has his foot in the door. Wishful thinking on my part?

  51. Tannadice Boy says:

    Thank you for that. I hope as well.

  52. The Isolator says:

    @Tannadice Boy

    It’s looking a bitty more positive on that front .My MP is Joanna Cherry so feeling a bit more optimistic this weekend compared to last.The sooner we can clear oot the gousters in the party the better.

  53. Republicofscotland says:

    Well if Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Conservative Leader of the House, (The Tories have a huge majority) recent words on devolution are anything to go by, as soon as they’re done with the Brexit fiasco, their Eye of Sauron will turn North to Scotland and devolution, or to be more precise the rolling back of devolution.

    Rees-Mogg called devolution an act of vandalism, so we have a fair idea of what to expect post the 31st of December, and the God awful Brexit Festival.

  54. Tannadice Boy says:

    @The Isolator
    Joanna has her finger on the pulse of the Independence movement. Re Alex, a life time contribution to the cause has got to be worth something. We will need a change of leadership before he can be invited back into the SNP even in an honorary role. He gets back in and I will rejoin. Going back out for more Christmas shopping with my only boss (Wife). Somebody save me! Pick up the gossip later.

  55. Republicofscotland says:

    An excellent article by Iain Lawson, he highlights the demonisation of bloggers who point out the facts surrounding the SNP’s failures on independence.

  56. robertknight says:

    Just clocked a photo of Sturgeon on the Sky News App making proclamations about Indy being just around the corner.

    You know, I’m sure her nose is looking longer than usual.

    Anyone else notice the same???

  57. Republicofscotland says:

    I have issues with John Swinney and the lack of cooperation with the Inquiry, however this is surely a step in the right direction with regards to the children of Scotland.

  58. The Isolator says:

    @ Tannadice boy

    Agree with all you say.Enjoy the shopping trip ha ha.Saturday’s are a dead loss withoot the fitba though.C’Mon the JT’s.

  59. Harry mcaye says:

    Grey gull – sent my begging letter back with some choice words. May have mentioned embezzlement. Most therapeutic but also extremely sad.

  60. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “speaker against the first motion has been suspended from the party….before speaking, of course”

    Any idea who?

  61. Sarah says:

    @ Rev – Yes, I do. But must leave it to themselves to elucidate.

  62. CameronB Brodie says:

    I really struggle to view Jacob Rees-Mogg as a supporter of democracy, as he clearly has a longing to return to an era when social Darwinism was all the rage. So here’s a look at “The Role of Natural Rights in Constitutional Adjudication”, as counter to the man’s unbridled Torydum and nostalgia bound English nationalism.

    I really struggle to view the First Minister as a supporter of democracy, as she’s clearly clueless about constitutional law, and yet considers her judgement to be superior to the jurisprudence of international law. Which it most definitely is mot.

  63. Tannadice Boy says:

    @The Isolator
    I am back but shattered beyond all recognition. One purchase a slow cooker. I picked one out at the very start. Multiple technical qualifications, engineering degrees etc. My wife listens to a Saturday boy. (No offence I was a Saturday boy as well) In the end we purchased the item I said at the start. How have we been married for 35 years?. A microcosm of the SNP..compromise?. Stu’s post is the most important. Who has been denied a voice at Conference?.

  64. `I got a Christmas card from Nicola this morning`,

    i have relations in America and i always post them christmas cards early in November,

    seems they have been counted as a vote for Biden.

    true story.

  65. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    Your link to the Grouse Beater article now says

    “Not Found Apologies, but the page you requested could not be found. Perhaps searching will help.” @Stuart MacKay says at 1:02 pm

    Last article showing is “Reforming the SNP”

    Grouse Beater,

    I know you lurk (and post from time to time) can you shed any light as I enjoy your work (primarily because your stuff seldom misses and hits the wall but also gives food for thought)?

  66. kapelmeister says:

    Sk8er Sturgeon on thin ice.

  67. Graeme says:

    I see Stuart MacDonald has asked for him name to be removed from the list claiming he didn’t put it there.

    Now he’ll be branded a transphobe for wanting it removed even though he didn’t put it there

    There’s just no winning sometimes 🙂

  68. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    Looks like Craig Murray being lined up for expulsion so he can’t become SNP President!

    “I am particularly concerned that one of the signatories of the letter is Lisa Cameron, an SNP MP. The statement that “ethnic cleansing on a massive scale and serial human rights abuse, including war crimes, yes, Israel is guilty of these atrocities” is completely in line with longstanding SNP policy on Palestine. Lisa Cameron’s part in having my website blacklisted for an opinion in line with SNP policy is shameful.”

  69. Beaker says:

    @Tannadice Boy says:
    28 November, 2020 at 2:25 pm
    “Going back out for more Christmas shopping with my only boss (Wife). Somebody save me! Pick up the gossip later.”

    There are advantages to a lockdown after all 🙂

  70. Stuart MacKay says:

    Jockanese Wind Talker

    Yes, Page not found for me as well. Perhaps it’s was published before it was ready. I get Gareth’s posts via RSS so I still have the full text of the article, but I’ll wait for Grouse Beater to do or say something.

    There’s nothing particularly controversial in the post. Without letting too much out of the bag it describes the long history of the antagonism between authoritarians and liberal (freedom) minded folks. It’s an excellent article and it captures why we might be on the cusp of a new Dark Age – that’s slightly over dramatising it, but getting jailed for the hate crime of adding a space between two works fits into that picture rather nicely.

  71. Stuart MacKay says:

    Ugh, I need to learn how to type “space between two works” should of course be “space between two words”

  72. Tannadice Boy says:

    Absolutely but my wife is now saying I was right all along. A golden moment. It does a man good to get one over the wife now and again. I am going on the drink!

  73. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    Thanks for the reply @Stuart MacKay says at 5:15 pm

    Will wait for it to appear.


  74. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Have been really busy with family stuff, haven’t been able to catch up at all.

    What’s going on with Joanna Cherry?

    Are we seeing the start of some form of putsch?

    *crosses fingers*

  75. Al-Stuart says:

    Hi Meg,

    Please don’t give up.

    If you want SNP High Command to take notice, your idea of sending them a note of what is wrong and how to ciporrect it is a good idea.

    You are right, many at SNP HQ will ignore your reply, BUT if you parcel it up and INCLUDE a large heavy house brick, the FREEPOST bill will be around £4 rather 65p.

    THAT IS likely to get the attention of someone in the party.

    In fact if we all use the SNP FREEPOST address and send in a house brick along with our MANY questions: for example on why Penfold Murrell looked to pervert the course of justice when he sent those WhatsApp messages seeking to stitch-up and jail Alex Salmond than that might register in the SNP #nodebate thingy that Johanna Cherry mentioned.

    Plus a of other messages… all sent via SNP FREEPOST and enclosing a very heavy house-brick with each letter, then I suspect SOMEONE will start to take notice. The Royal Mail for FREEPOST invoice will be sent to THAT dodgy Treasurer, the one who has lost all the ringfenced money. A Royal Mail FREEPOST invoice of £8,000 for all the £4 housebrick and attached letters will definitely register on his radar.

    P.S. Breeks, a BIG thankyou for linking the Johanna Cherry article from behind the British Empire’s broadsheet. Worth repeating to assist others…

  76. John says:

    Thank you Breeks

    Breeks says:
    28 November, 2020 at 8:13 am

    Times article archived….

  77. Republicofscotland says:

    A bit of good news Jenny Marra is to stand down at next years Holyrood elections, she won’t be missed.

  78. Tannadice Boy says:

    I was sad to see Jenny Marra give up Holyrood today. I voted for Fitzpatrick SNP and Jenny (Labour) list vote at the last Holyrood election. The Marras were big in this area. The end of an era. I won’t being voting for Joe this time. Nice guy, nice family etc. But I can’t give him my constituency vote. He didn’t do enough to stem the drift away from independence. In fact both my votes are up for grabs.

  79. Astonished says:

    I see stewart mcdonald MP has “clamed” his name was added against his wishes. I simply do not believe him.

    Unless he sues the originator(s) of this vile letter then he should be expelled from the party.

    The wokeratti have shown no understanding or tolerance of alternative positions.

    And when they were in sole charge of party discipline even the completely innocent were expelled for no good reason.

    Hopefully things are changing. We can only win independence if we expel all the woke.

  80. Cag-does-thinking says:

    I thought it interesting that the BBC had another “Salmond bad” story. (these are replacing SNP bad these days) where John Swinney said in evidence to the Child Sex Abuse enquiry that Alex didn’t support an enquiry when he was FM The timing of this makes it look as if is another attempt by the SNP heirarchy to demonise him just ahead of the conference.

  81. Effijy says:

    Could Alex Salmond have said he didn’t support an enquiry
    because there was insufficient evidence to prove anything?

    You know the type of assessment Evans, Lloyd, Murrell,
    The police and procurator fiscal should have made before
    they wasted over a million prosecuting an innocent man.

    For any Tories tunes in, how does the first statement compare
    to the Westminster enquiry into members of parliament interfering
    with children where all the documents relating where “Lost” by Theresa
    May’s Dept and the appointed head of the investigation kept being a
    friend of those suspected?

  82. Andy Ellis says:


    The letter and Joanna Cherry’s excellent response to it should be regarded as the canary in the coal mine WRT the SNP’s future direction. I hope she pursues those involved – particularly those in her own party – and ruins them. I have zero faith that the SNP will take any action even if people complain &/or Joanna wins any defamation action or sees a retraction or redress.

    In the end that is exactly the problem with the current party leadership though isn’t it? They either agree with the original letter, or just lack the moral courage to stand up to the TRA extremists who are eating the party alive.

    If the SNP had a leadership worth its salt of course it would discipline or expel any who signed the letter from the misogynist collective behind it, and make it clear to any voicing support for it they were not welcome inside the party. Of course, it’s vanishingly unlikely to do so.

    For those of you who remain in the SNP, time to put up or shut up. Either you can help face these cancel culture bigots down and reclaim your party, or you are complicit in accepting their agenda.

    Pick one.

  83. Allium says:

    That TRA letter will go down in legendary Scottish twitter infamy like another #clypegate. And they’ve done it to themselves. Amazing.

  84. A Person says:

    Good on Joanna Cherry for standing up to these lunatics and bullies.

    Time will vindicate her.

    I get the feeling that matters are coming to a head. We have all heard “an indyref is coming soon” too many times, while the hated GRA and HCB sail along.

    It’s actually unfathomable to me that the leadership would choose this cross to die on.

  85. Robert graham says:

    Been busy anything happen at the conference ?



  86. Daisy Walker says:

    @”Astonished says:
    28 November, 2020 at 6:55 pm
    I see stewart mcdonald MP has “clamed” his name was added against his wishes. I simply do not believe him.

    Unless he sues the originator(s) of this vile letter then he should be expelled from the party.”

    I’m not sure he has grounds to sue – he has not been the victim of defamation.

    If he’s telling the truth re his name being used without his permission – then it would appear to be more a criminal matter – a crime of Fraud. I rather suspect sitting politicians are (justifiably) legally, protective about their names being used for endorsements – and that to do so without their knowledge or permission, is something they have a duty to legally rectify as soon as possible.

    Be interesting to see what legal (and this could be internal party disciplinary steps – if deemed by injured parties to be appropriate) steps he takes to address this.

    A very poor reflection on his professionalism if he does nothing.

    So, to recap – the senders of this letter – have (at the very least) defamed one sitting MP and member of the SNP and ‘misused’ the name of another SNP sitting politician – quite possibly committing a crime of Fraud by doing so.

    Oh dear.

    In other news – Reece-Mogg has been fighting Indy’s corner. For those No voters out there who fully support Devolution, he was so blatant – I could hear pennies dropping from all over Perthshire.

    A few more like that and even the BTL commenters over on WGD might wake up to the urgent need for action on Indy within the next few months. Or am I being too optimistic.

  87. Hatuey says:

    Nothing that happens at conference will matter. It’s basically some time off for those of us who know that the leadership is corrupt to the core and needs to be replaced before any progress can be made towards independence. You can apply that to all SNP structures and channels.

    The reason for that is simple. The party is the first thing they stitched up. And from the perspective of a bunch of corrupt politicians intent on dominating Scottish politics and milking power for everything they can, the party is the most important thing to stitch up.

    One of the reasons I’m so interested in the Harassment Inquiry is that it’s really the only chance we have of replacing those who hijacked the SNP. There is no other way or means. Actually, the attack on Salmond himself and his supporters was a necessary step towards colonising the party and making their position unassailable – it was pure luck that they failed.

  88. stonefree says:

    @ Daisy Walker at 10:23 pm

    What McDonald would seek is somewhere in about Unlawful Misrepresentation or Fraudulent Misrepresentation, under the Misrepresentation Act 1967 , if my memory is correct the principals are under common law,so it should be an easier case to pursue
    Of course, I, as most others here, would find it hard to believe McDonald’s version of events

  89. stonefree says:

    I should have added , I suppose the SNP will pay his legal fees, or maybe his top chum will chip in

  90. Benhope says:

    Thank you Contrary @ 10.43.

    I feel encouraged. At last a MP comes out to challenge the NS leadership.

    Then the letter from Astonished @11.38am.

    The mainstream old membership of the SNP has a chance of reclaiming our party back again.

    Are you still alive Robert Peffers? I miss you ?

    Please show your support for Joanna and Kenny. They need to know that they have our support in many thousands.

  91. Tannadice Boy says:

    Pure luck or the sensibilities of a Jury?.

  92. msean says:

    Great cartoon

  93. Grouse Beater says:

    This week’s cartoon reminds me of a Feydeau farce, and one of those Brian Rix trouser dropping comedy plays on the London stage where the set had seven doors, a balcony and a surprise trap door.

    Your essential weekend reading:
    ‘SNP’s Wheest For Indy’:

  94. Hatuey says:

    Luck and blundering, I’d say, tannadice. Luck that they blundered maybe. When I say blundering, I mean making clumsy telltale mistakes that gave the show away. The jury saw it too.

  95. Ian Brotherhood says:

    No apologies for copying this over from the previous thread.
    Simply brilliant:

    Lorna Campbell says:
    28 November, 2020 at 5:17 pm
    None of this capture of our society – indeed, the entire West – could have happened without the help and explicit/tacit approval of the political class. It is they who are responsible for this social experimentation, just as they are responsible for wars and killing our and others’ children in other ways. Ordinary people do not go out and overturn science, just as they do not make war on others on their own initiative. You need to have self-interested megalomaniacs/big business/capitalist vulture culture telling ordinary people that lies are the new truth.

    Anyone of sound mind listening to that exceptionally foolish woman, Lisa Nandy, trying to justify taking away all women’s spaces and rights, would want to vomit at her cringing, wallowing, ego-massaging nonsense. Many other political females are equally and fundamentally stupid – so stupid that they cannot see through the con, perpetrated by people whose cosy, comfy existence relies on pulling the wool over people’s eyes on behalf of one of the most toxic, vile and vicious lobbies ever to disgrace the political corridors of power. Who said that more women in positions of authority would make things better? Nah. Women are just as susceptible as men to being power-hungry, selfish and greedy.

    To believe that you can possibly be right to subvert and suborn an entire society and culture for the sake of a dangerous and insane delusion should qualify you for the Order of the Boot – and, arguably, a straitjacket. Shirley-Anne Somerville, and all her pseudo ‘woke’ colleague need to be ripped out of the SNP by their genital short and curlies and forced to do a long stint in a woman’s refuse or a rape crisis centre – preferably one without a pretend woman in charge who conned his way in to a well-paid job that a natal woman was prevented from having.

    Basically, they are demanding that we collude in what is a delusion. Never before, in the history of the human race, has that happened. Totalitarian monsters have come and gone, demanding their populations toe the party line and ethos, but even they, demented and evil as they were, never tried to pretend that one sex could possibly be the other. That is why this lot are beyond evil, are a parody of evil.

    The reasons for these political/capitalist/tech collaborators in the biggest delusion ever is to enable/make money from what is coming our way after this particular war of delusion has been won (they think). Even the trans lobby, vile as it is, is being conned. Few things are about anything other than money/power. These petty politicians – and they are petty in the sense of being political and intellectual pygmies – would not be able to debate the trans ideology if they tried because it is, essentially, a pile of reeking ordure.

    No one cares whether men want to pretend to be what they can never be in reality. More power to their elbow. Just stay out of women’s spaces and rights because women will fight back, women will never stop saying that these ‘women’ are men, because they ARE men, and can never be anything else. Put all women in prison Humza – will that be a men’s prison so that they can be raped and sodomized as all your wee trans poison dwarf Twitter mob threaten? – because that is what you are going to have to do, and women in prison will be brought on side, too, because they are not blind to the threat.

    The SNP are going to lose big-time in 2021, if this nonsense is not brought under control and the toxic ones rooted out like an infestation. Independence not colonization. Come on, scientific community, speak out before it is too late. This rubbish is going to set our society back hundreds of years. Lawyers should also be pointing out the probable legal fall-out from this nonsense. Few things fill politicians with fear as much as being sued. Women will sue the government and its departments, and those responsible for this nonsense as cases pile up against the madness of this thing.

    The Shirley-Anne Somervilles and others like her need to put their money where their big mouths are and be prepared to part with their bank balances and property for their utter intransigent stupidity. Why doesn’t Shirley-Anne Somerville donate her home to the trans lobby as a refuge for trans people (she could appoint a trans woman to run it, too) and explain, while she is at it, where the monies that are allocated by government to the trans lobby go? Where has all the money gone, long time passing… Not on trans shelters and refuges, that’s for sure, unlike women’s allocations. I feel a FoI coming on…

  96. Nell G says:

    Found out today there s a fish variety called a “bastard sturgeon”.

  97. Daisy Walker says:

    @ Grouse Beater

    That essay’s a belter. Superb.

  98. Hatuey says:

    Yes, good piece, Grouse Beater.

  99. Willie says:

    I too have just received my Christmas from Nicola together with a begging letter for funds.

    Well I ain’t going to send any. Like many very long time members I have given plenty to the SNP, and given happily in the knowledge of donations going to a good cause. But no longer. The SNP is now a party with many many careerists locked into to the money tree. Big salaries, perks a plenty whilst the members get treated like something you’d wipe of your shoe.

    And so with both Murrell and Ruddick being paid huge salaries as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer I say no more. And in saying no I will too will be sending back a note to Party HQ using the free post envelope provided along with my Christmas card, to say exactly why after nearly forty years I am no longer donating.

    The party has gone rotten, it has gone rogue, it has lost its way, and it is full of troughers with no interest in independence. Indeed, some of the troughers now actually criticise, despise the rank and file who support independence.

    Get ithe party back on track and then I’ll contribute again. Until then no – and they can just take the 65 pence cost of my freepost return message off Mr Murrell’s salary.

  100. Effijy says:

    Vaccine manufacturers ramping up false claims
    to make their millions, Tories pleading for votes to
    Impose the next tier of Civid restrictions, Brexit Brexit
    Is only one month away.

    As God’s favourite nation, the English are holding out
    on the foreign fiends folding to their superior demands.

    Bojo’s boys must fold or there will be many food and component
    shortages across the country.

    Scotland will be the sacrifice on that alter again.
    Expect Scottish Fishing rights to be sold off for
    English trade benefits.

    This can let the Tories imposes many draconian measures on the general
    public in order to pay for the billions handed out in contracts to Tory supporters

    Mass unemployment, zero hours contracts, no pay rises, no workers or human rights.

    With a massive majority the Tories can get anything through parliament but they
    always add in that ambiguity of it might sound harsh but it’s there just in case,
    We might never use that power- and then Wham!

    Scotland must remove these vicious Tory beasts from our lives and create new peoples parties
    such as what Keir Hardy intended 100 years ago.

  101. Margaret E says:

    Beautiful essay by Grousebeater, thanks for an inspiring read today of all days. I applaud your resilience under the sustained stress you suffer, and your ability to produce such well-written, well-put arguments.

  102. Stuart MacKay says:

    Grouse Beater

    Excellent stuff. That last line in particular.

    So what are you going to do with “Attack on Scotland’s Freedom”? The contents of “SNP’s`wheest for indy`” are very similar and better in the sense that it’s more topical. However the historical depth in the former carries a lot of weight and it would a shame if you consigned it to the trash bin.

  103. Effijy says:

    John Swinney was on Sky News with Sophie Ridge.
    She twice put forward that Scotland’s Covid Stats are
    worse than England’s?

    Swinney replied that our infection rate was about 30% lower than England’s
    She suggested our death rate was worse though.

    John had some laid back mono tone ramble and repeated the lower infection rate?

    I was certain our death rate was much better than England’s, who’s isn’t?
    I researched it everywhere I could and I’m 100% right!

    Please see link below-

    From where Scotland is now, we need our representatives to attack fake news and get really upset
    with presenters who double dip out-right lies in our name.

    Where did you get such bizarre figures?
    They are totally false.
    Do you not carry out any research in matters you wish to discuss.
    Do you realise the ramifications of reporting fake news to the public.
    How do we continue with an interview if this is how you conduct your business.

    Why are we nice to the deranged mouthpiece of the filthy rich and corrupt elite?
    Where are we with being nice and soft with them?

    Grow a pair and give me back my country’s dignity and sovereignty!

  104. Mac says:

    It is a damning sign that so few people in the SNP are standing up and being counted. Joanna Cherry and Kenny McAskill… anyone else?

    Think of all those additional MPs we put in place with the massive majorities given to the SNP post 2014. Where the fuck are they? Totally silent, totally complicit with what Sturgeon is systematically doing to the SNP. They are not worth keeping these gutless do nothing pricks.

    It just demonstrates the huge damage that Team Nicola have done this last six years. The party had so much more integrity and backbone under AS and with a fraction of the number of MPs that they have now.

    McAlpine (was it?) is so right NS acts like it is a presidential system in Scotland, dictating policy from HQ and controlling all aspects of the party with an iron fist, ruthlessly crushing internal dissent and systematically replacing MPs with yes women (all female lists remember) loyal primarily to Nicola. She is morphing into this little mini Thatcher type more and more with every passing day. (And we are the miners in this situation.)

    NS and her husband have hijacked the SNP and the mask is really slipping now. And what is underneath is an authoritarian little monster.

    When you look at the totality of what they have done the last 6 years and are doing on lots of different fronts… the SNP are an extremely sinister and shady operation these days. And all aided and abetted by the unionist media. Another very bad sign…

    You could blame some of it on NS being a narcissist (that was an interesting article a while back) but this is too systematic, too methodical, too consistently foul to be anything other than a deliberate attempt to poison the well.

    We have to wipe the slate clean of this current crop of MPs and repopulate the seats under a new leader. If we don’t the party is truly gone. There is almost nothing left as it is. Look at the nick of them… there is hardly anyone standing up to what is being done.

  105. Dan says:

    Jockanese Wind Talker says:
    28 November, 2020 at 5:08 pm

    Looks like Craig Murray being lined up for expulsion so he can’t become SNP President!

    “I am particularly concerned that one of the signatories of the letter is Lisa Cameron, an SNP MP. The statement that “ethnic cleansing on a massive scale and serial human rights abuse, including war crimes, yes, Israel is guilty of these atrocities” is completely in line with longstanding SNP policy on Palestine. Lisa Cameron’s part in having my website blacklisted for an opinion in line with SNP policy is shameful.”

    I’ll just drop this here from a year ago as it seems quite fitting for a number of reasons.

  106. Robert graham says:

    Independence is just round the corner
    Who says it Nicola does on Andrew Marrs English TV station right now once more asking the English government for permission to hold a vote , oh a Legal vote just to make it clear
    I don’t remember England asking us for permission to do anything over the last few hundred years
    or does this Union only work if we get approval from the English mm sounds like a hostage situation there , let’s face it it’s a Bloody Occupation

  107. winifred mccartney says:

    That’s strange the card I got yesterday was for St Andrew’s day asking for funds – no chance -I cannot work out where these figures for Scotlands’ higher death rates come from, even the care home figures – I know you can prove anything you want with statistics but the bbc is blatant and aggressive in its work for the Britnats.

    Just watched Marr interview with Sturgeon, of course there are issues but that was no interview it was an attack dog being let lose for the state, especially after watching the cosy chat with Raab, nothing about tracing Failed, corruption on stilts and all the rest. Blatant, biased corrupt BBC – why am I surprised.

  108. Republicofscotland says:

    Grouse Beater @11.32am.

    Excellent article especially this very relevant one liner from your article.

    “I am in no doubt the SNP is infiltrated by spooks, crooks and aspiring dukes.”

  109. Pete says:

    From your figures, Scotland has a slightly higher death rate as a percentage of cases than England.
    Also, in terms of population Scotland also has a slightly higher death rate.
    Not huge but a little worse.

  110. Ottomanboi says:

    Covid, whatever that might be clinically and there are many doubting its authenticity as a ‘novel’ disease, has been a massive money making opportunity for online big business and big pharma.
    Governments have effectively suspended democratic freedoms and basic civil rights without much complaint from politicians, civil society representatives or the general public.
    We have taken a giant leap in an authoritarian semi-totalitarian direction. We have had an object lesson in how easily taken for granted freedoms can be removed.
    Big Brother/Sister wishes us to stay safe, or else.
    The ‘old politics’ is truly dead.

  111. Ian Brotherhood says:

    my 12.24 from last night is still in moderation – it’s just a straight C&P of Lorna Campbell’s comment on the previous thread so I don’t understand why. Please release it from moderation so that the people who may have missed it can read it. Thanks.

  112. Republicofscotland says:

    “Former special adviser to Scottish Labour’s three first ministers has come out in favour of independence, arguing that it is “fundamentally important” that there is another referendum on the issue.

    “Economist Duncan Maclennan, a professor of public policy at Glasgow university, was a central policy figure in the early days of devolution, advising Donald Dewar, Henry McLeish and Jack McConnell.”

  113. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

    Aye, very noticeable that it is one rule for some (Wokoharam allowed to abuse with impunity and have legal fees and personal liabilities covered by members donations) and another for the rest (normal tank and file members, like Grousebeater, smeared and ejected from the SNP over demonstrably false accusations) @Dan says at 10:10am

    Hopefully your remaining an SNP member you will have started to reverse this by effecting change on the SNP NEC.

  114. kapelmeister says:

    Grouse Beater @11:32am

    Stirring stuff. Thank you.

  115. Socrates MacSporran says:

    I missed the live transmission of Andrew Marr’s show this morning, but, have now caught-up on the iplayer.

    He really had Olive McBurnie scrambling when he switched his attack to the Salmond issue – I think she should get used to these types of attacks being ratcheted-up between now and May – assuming she survives until then. It will not be pretty, and it will hurt the SNP.

    But, as I have long suspected, her love of hearing her own voice lets her down. Once or twice in the interview, she produced statistics to disproves Marr’s SNP Baaadd attack. Then carried-on talking.

    Marr would raise one figure, she would counter, then, instead of shutting-up when she had made her killer point of refuting him, she waffled on and the killer point was lost or forgotten about.

    She also does this regularly at FMQs.

    If a Unionist comes up with some wrong date, simply say: “No, you’re wrong, the correct figures are X.

    Then shut-up.

    We really need to be rid of her and get someone in who can make the points properly.

    Finally, Marr is a total disgrace, the worst Scottidsh tractor since Massey-Ferguson stopped building them at Kilmarnock. Andra Marr, like the othe Andra, from Paisley, is working damned hard for his K, as a servant of the Empire.

  116. kapelmeister says:

    Socrates Macspotran @11:49am

    Sir Andrew Kneel & the Total KnightMarr.

  117. The Isolator says:

    Let’s be clear here,Sturgeon will not be leading the SNP to independence,nor will she be leading the party into next year’s election if she is held accountable for the Salmond fiasco.Alex Salmond has already set the fire and it’s now all about the burn rate.

  118. kapelmeister says:

    Sturgeon says that indy is in “clear sight”.

    Using what, the fucking Hubble Telescope?

  119. Beaker says:

    @kapelmeister says:
    29 November, 2020 at 12:11 pm
    “Sturgeon says that indy is in “clear sight”.
    Using what, the fucking Hubble Telescope?”

    She’s looking through the wrong end…

  120. Bob Mack says:


    There is a reason for those figures.

    Scotland not only confirms Covid tested deaths, but also includes those who were SUSPECTED of having Covid as a factor.

    ENGLAND stopped this a while ago(April), therefore only those diagnosed with Covid were counted towards the death toll .

    The rest were put in excess deaths rather than suspected Covid cases.

    Bit of fiddling really.

  121. Bob Mack says:


    One of your best blogs. Respect.

  122. Iain More says:

    @Bit of fiddling really.

  123. Stan Broadwood says:

    Watched Sturgeon on the House Jock’s show this morning, and she as aged about ten years in the past year.

    I wonder what is troubling her most?

    Is it the outcome of the Salmond inquiry?

    Or is it the thought of Scotland voting to become an Independent Nation???

    Both of course will be the end of her particular reign.

    Trying to lie to and ignore the feelings of a whole Nation does have it’s drawbacks.

  124. Iain More says:


    @Bob Mack

    England is fiddling its Covid 19 numbers down the way by thousands. It is more than just a wee bit of fiddling Bob.

    Meanwhile Sturgeon will drag us over the cliff with them as the Tories and their Press and Media stooges demand the freedom to murder us all.

  125. Hatuey says:

    Socrates, delivery is supposed to be her strong point. It’s hard to be strong and confident when your ship is taking on water and listing, your hull full of holes, etc.

    The tories and the establishment don’t want her to go. That’s what worries me. They’d rather she went into the election weak and tainted. She probably will.

    This is the problem SNP and Sturgeon loyalists are going to need to face soon, when it becomes clear that the Inquiry isn’t going to finish her off in time. They’re going to be stuck with a vote loser going into the election and instead achieving a majority in Holyrood they’ll be left begging for support in some sort of confidence and supply arrangement.

    That sort of outcome would be a success for Sturgeon and her ego, it would be a success for the tories and labour, and it would be a success for Britain. They all get to say it proves there’s no support for independence. Sturgeon would probably say that too, as she more or less did after the failure of her 2017 campaign. But it’d mean you could say “bye bye” to Indy, probably forever.

  126. Bob Mack says:

    @Iain More,

    Yes fiddling. The truth will come out eventually, and probably as a political attack . We know they are doing exactly that, so why do we accept it ?.

    Both Swinney and Sturgeon this morning let their interviewers make these exact claims without hammering home this very point.

  127. Stuart MacKay says:

    Mac @10:02am

    For the longest time since discovering all the vile cybernats I’ve been trying to work out some answer to “why we are where we are”. After 2014 it seemed that after some regrouping all that was required was another push and we’d be over the line. Yet the behaviour has been quite the opposite – prevarication, indecision, handing the initiative to the opposition at every possibility, the list goes on and on.

    I’m slowly getting there and given all the facts minus the heated rhetoric and hype I’m converging on the following:

    1. The SNP fully invested in presidential politics, built around a cult of leadership that allows control to be maintain by a tiny number of people. It’s the trend started by Blair, at least on this side of the Atlantic. You can see it in other European countries too. The problem is that it creates a single point of failure and unfortunately rank amateurs at this game fail to see it.

    2. As a result, the Dear Leader and the hench-people, can exert control over everybody else save for a few dissenting voices. Apart from Kenny MacAskill and to a much lesser extent Joanna Cherry, who appears to be keeping her powder dry, there are very few prepared to stand up and weather the maelstrom that will result from doing so.

    3. Despite all the theories I think the result of all the inaction has a simple cause. Nicola Sturgeon has a to-do list and every item on that list is going to be ticked off before she’s prepared to countenance another referendum. In her mind she wants to built a modern, progressive country but unfortunately she has failed to recognise how that “ideal” has been compromised by the factions who support her. Before you think this is an excuse, that failure is entirely down to poor leadership and poor judgement as well as some bat-shit insane ideas.

    4. The influx of ulterior motives after the destruction of Scottish Labour was initially in line with the progressive vision. Alas, that failure of leadership is where the problems really started to bite. Wokoharam are organised, much more organised than the SNP leadership – despite what they think and it’s a monster than cannot be controlled. Combine that with the “thought-crime” baggage that comes with anything left-wing these days and you have the perfect climate to suppress dissent. Nobody who has been through the hard work of getting elected wants to put their head above the parapet and have it blown off.

    5. Not quite sure how Alex Salmond fits into this. I do think, as I’ve said before, that this was a scalp the Alpha-Females wanted to prove their #metoo credibility but I realise that’s only (a small) part of the picture. There is also the aspect of ensuring there was no resurrection of Alec’s fortunes. But there were so many ways to move the party on and put some distance between Salmond’s tenure that putting the man in prison for a substantial period of time and likely the rest of his life is draconian out of all proportion.

    So we have a perfect storm of events which gets us to where we are. It’s be best I can do without sinking into conspiracy theories, apart from what happened Salmond (hubris on the part of the conspirators?). Events have dropped us into this tar-pit but the underlying cause is clear – incompetence, ulterior motives and weak leadership. It’s a powerful cocktail for chaos.

  128. Effijy says:


    I was and am very good at arithmetic.
    Tell my what numbers you are using for
    Scotland have poor Covid numbers compared
    to England?

    Scotland with 3,700 Covid Deaths and England 50,800 Covid Deaths!

    England would need to have 14 x the Scottish population before we
    would have a slightly worse Covid death rate.

    We don’t have!

    I can rabbit in about those bastards down South decided to ignore the Cygnus Exercise
    warning of the NHS failing to cope with an epidemic and who they refused to let English
    manufacturers of PPE kit to sell to Scotland and how England has already privatised around
    8% of their NHS to the likes of Virgin Health, etc but I would like you to explain how you came
    Up you your claim against all the approved figures.

  129. Terry says:


    Nail on head. She knows it and the hierarchy of the snp know it and so do their closet supporters. The British state.

    They might play with her like a cat with a mouse before polishing her off. Clearly crushing independence comes first though.

    Dear oh dear Nicola. Have you never heard the phrase, “Never trust a Tory!”

  130. iain mhor says:

    “spooks, crooks and aspiring dukes”

    Funny that, I had been poring over Scotland’s Peers, specifically Earldoms to begin with*. Ever wondered who they all are, what they do and where they bide now? I decided I did – kinda wish I didn’t to be honest.

    Normally I have little or no interest in them at all – not on my radar. Well, other than a vanishing few notables, it appears the feeling is quite mutual – don’t look to Scotand is all I can say on that matter.

    As for the *Dukedoms and Baronetcies etc. There are so very many of them – so many honours of the realm.
    There is a theme however; Scotland may have peerages, but what do those peers think of the Scotland they owe their honours to? Stab a wild guess…

    *I gave up running through every extant peerage, I could pretty much copypasta their biogs and demographic in the end – disheartening.

    It did make me wonder though – whither Scotland’s Peers and Honours in an Independent Scotland?
    What value to Scotland, what are they really bringing to the table – other than their Lonely Planet guide and a handy phrasebook – perhaps a fair question to be asked in future.

  131. Andy Ellis says:

    @Terry & Hatuey

    I suspect the britnats are actually intensely relaxed about the SNP. They don’t HAVE to crush independence, because the most likely outcome of the Salmond enquiry and #HR2021 elections is still a gradualist SNP administration. Johnson knows the SNP gradualists don’t have the political chops for a confrontation or constitutional crisis. All he has to do is say “now is not the time” ad nauseam.

    Only a few things *might* produce a different result:

    1. a palace coup inside the SNP to defenestrate the current leadership and replace it with those actually committed to delivering independence before 2039; or

    2. Sturgeon being so badly damaged by the Salmond inquiry that she either has to resign or is removed, and then @ #HR2021 the SNP loses its majority but depends on the support of minor pro-indy parties for a majority.

    Sadly, I think both the above alternatives are looking less and less likely, which leaves us looking at a minimum of 5 more years of stodgy gradualism.

    SNP members will be judged harshly by history if they don’t act decisively to take back control of the party from the Sturgeonista clique soon.

  132. Hatuey says:

    I’m not exactly comfortable with calling Sturgeon a gradualist, just as I’m not comfortable with describing her government as authoritarian.

    She’s only called a gradualist now because of her ineptitude in 2017. Her election campaign of that year was diabolical and just about everything that has happened since, from the decision to attack Salmond to the war on the grassroots, stems from her failure in that election and her dishonesty afterwards when she blamed indyref2 for her failure.

    Similarly, she’s only authoritarian now because she wants to cover up her role in the Salmond stitch-up. Salmond was a figurehead for those in the party that wanted to up the ante on independence.

    There’s a lot of overlap here. If you think she failed in 2017, want more than the section 30 process, think what they did with Salmond was a disgrace, think GRA and her domestic agenda is a bullshit distraction, then you’re basically in for it – it’s authoritarian tough love time.

    Everything is driven and determined by her failures, she isn’t a gradualist or anything. She’s a failure. All she is good at is jumping in front of a camera and bullshitting and, even then, she only gets away with that here in Scotland. As soon as she goes on camera with someone like Marr she flounders and crumbles. Jesus, Sophy Ridge even caused her to go into meltdown.

    Anyway. She isn’t anything. She’s just her. That’s her politics – “I’m with her”. And if you disagree with “her”, you better watch out.

    It was great seeing Marr trash her record on coronavirus today. We are officially worse than England, as I’ve been saying for weeks. Where is Scotland’s news media and our journalists? Are they with “her” too?

  133. ronnie anderson says:

    GrouseBeater I left my comment on your blog Awra Best Gareth

  134. wee monkey says:

    Morning. How is conference?

    Meanwhile, back in reality, we have more evidence of the need to sacrifice ANYBODY to the altar of SNP/Murrel governance…

    Quote..”Teachers have hit out over what they say are critical gaps and weaknesses in efforts to contain Covid-19 on school campuses, with some left feeling like “lambs to the slaughter”.

    One secondary teacher in Glasgow told The Herald on Sunday that access to and advice on coronavirus testing for staff had been “pretty non-existent” – even when pupils are instructed to self-isolate after a case of the illness is identified.

    It comes amid claims that educators are feeling pressure to disable the tracing app on phones and not go for tests in case this leads to significant numbers self isolating and makes it impossible to ensure adequate cover at schools.

    There have also been reports of teachers being asked to exceed class size limits because there are not enough staff. Warning that absence rates in some classes were at least 50 per cent, the teacher said guidelines on social distancing between colleagues and pupils were being routinely breached, and that no additional safety measures had been put in place despite Glasgow being subject to level four restrictions” etc, etc.

    So this is where Scotland is right now under the Murrels/SNP.

    If anyone doubts this is actually true please shout up.

  135. John Digsby says:


    The difference is that you are looking at the death rate over the whole pandemic, which is, as you say, lower – and you would expect this based on Scotland’s lower population density

    What people are pointing to is the recent rate of deaths to number of cases. Your search puts that at 44/788 or 5.5%, compared to 2.9% for England on equivalent stats

    I think a daily comparison like this is not helpful, but nor is judging current performance (over the last month, say) with performance over the whole pandemic

    Not that I think comparisons of this type are meaningful anyway.

  136. Nally Anders says:

    Ian B @12.23
    Thanks for reposting Lorna C’s piece.
    Thank you Lorna, as ever you’ve nailed it.

  137. stonefree says:

    To return to McDoanald,
    He has or hasn’t signed the document, dependent on the onlookers view, others have or not…..Again dependent of ones view…….
    Has Smith ever signed anything similar?
    From where I see it , he stays well clear of the crap,
    If I remember correctly he disassociated himself from Henderson and constantly applies similar tactics

  138. Hatuey says:

    John: “Not that I think comparisons of this type are meaningful anyway.”

    Why not? We compare everything else.

    And here’s another comparison… I don’t know any other country where the leadership has dismissed everything else to exclusively focus on coronavirus.

    Even at First Minister’s questions she has used the pandemic to undermine and bat away questioning on things like the Salmond Inquiry.

    She might have a leg to stand on if coronavirus was under control, but it isn’t, despite the endless stream of crap she delivers daily, despite all her tinkering and playing God with society and “the rules”, and despite the tiers.

    We are averaging about 35 to 50 deaths per day right now and have been for weeks. That’s about a thousand deaths per month.

    That’s success?

  139. cirsium says:

    @Ottomanboi, 11.08
    has been a massive money making opportunity for online big business and big pharma. Governments have effectively suspended democratic freedoms and basic civil rights without much complaint from politicians, civil society representatives or the general public.

    It was evident by September 2019 that the Banks had overstretched again and that Western economies were on course for a serious correction. it would be impossible to repeat 2008 without objections from the electorates. Quarantining the healthy has been an effective way of distracting people while the massive wealth transfer and shadow bank bailout is undertaken.

  140. Effijy says:

    Thanks for your attempt to explain John
    But of course you compare things with the
    Whole picture.

    How absurd if England went 99 days with worse Covid
    Death stats than Scotland and after a 1 day reversal to
    Headline Scotland worse than England.

    I’d like to see the media ask Boris why you are 4 times
    More likely to die of Covid in England than Germany.

    They both had their first Covid case within 24 hours of each other
    and Germany has a very much larger population.

  141. Mac says:

    Occam’s razor hugely favours the conspiracy theories at this point Stuart.

    To be honest if they are not full bore Tractor Driving Roland Rats that is worse for me at this point.

    I can make sense of that at least.

  142. Dan says:

    Surely there are quite few factors that mean simple comparisons of covid deaths stats. between England and Scotland won’t be that useful for arguing a point.
    Factors such as it being colder and damper up here which often exacerbates respiratory ailments, underlying poverty often causes compromised diet and health issues.

    Indy won’t sort the weather, but one hopes with Indy we could begin to address the poverty and the resultant issues that go with it.

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