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Wings Over Scotland

The ever-shifting goalposts

Posted on August 07, 2017 by

We’re back in the archives again today, because there’s still no news. (The Herald is desperately trying to whip up outrage over trains arriving 61 seconds late, and David Torrance has finally turned up at the “OMG YES MOVEMENT SPLIT” party just as the last stragglers are heading home and the hosts are going to bed.)

And we’re particularly enjoying this one, for a whole list of reasons:

(You can read the full original Scotsman piece here.)

Stephen – who if Gordon Brown had had his way would have become First Minister in 2007 – wasn’t the most recent Lib Dem to take that position, of course. Indeed, his own successor Tavish Scott had gone even further by the time of the next Holyrood election, saying that “if you want independence you can vote for it on Thursday”:

In the same week Ruth Davidson had said the same thing:

“You don’t get a referendum for free, you have to earn it. So if the Greens and the SNP – and the SSP or any of the other parties who’ve declared an interest in independence – get over the line and can make a coalition, make a majority, get the votes in the Parliament, then they’ll vote through a referendum, and that’s what democracy’s all about.”

The pro-independence parties DO of course have a majority of seats in the current Scottish Parliament, just as they did in 2011. But all of a sudden the rules have been changed, and changed radically.

Maybe we should just declare UDI now after all.


(NB: We should not just declare UDI now. But perhaps more of the media ought to be asking the Unionist parties what WOULD constitute a democratic mandate, rather than what DOESN’T.)

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  1. 07 08 17 10:57

    The ever-shifting goalposts | speymouth

45 to “The ever-shifting goalposts”

  1. Grouse Beater

    And the opposition ‘parties’ have the effrontery to claim they are democratic parties.

  2. handclapping

    Our media ask nothing of our Unionist parties as they know they have no answers. No answers is no news.

  3. Dr Jim

    I declare all Unionists useless unnecessary and a burden on Scotland and if they want to be Inglish that’s OK but stop holding us Scottish European citizens of the world back by making up their own rules then breaking them then lying about it afterwards

    These people are a terrible embarrassment to us all

  4. Dan Huil

    Britnats continue to lie about Scotland, such is their hatred for Scotland and its people. Britnat media continues to support these anti-Scottish lies and propaganda. Boycott the britnat scum.

  5. mogabee

    I remember all these comments.

    Weird how little these politicians care about how we view them, until the next election!

    Jeezo, it’s easy to see why folk lose confidance in the “powers that be.

    Democracy…as now defined not by dictionaries. ?

  6. Macart

    Pretty insulting isn’t it?

    They don’t even credit their own electorate with memory, never mind intelligence.

  7. ScottieDog

    I’m sure the media will still be focusing on joe 90 -greer’s quest for fame.
    Maybe if the laddie had an ounce of maturity he would have seen this weekend as an opportunity to call out the establishment media for its dreadful dismantling of Michelle Thomson’s career rather than use the same media weapon to satisfy his ego.

  8. MochaChoca

    Maybe when Sarwar told us that “the Scottish Parliament is not a democratic place in the conventional sense; it is a dictatorship” he wasn’t as far wrong as we thought, he just misinterpreted where the dictat was coming from.

  9. winifred mccartney

    Surely there is not a person left who believes what Unionists say or promise – they have always just said anything to get the result they want and will change the goalposts and break their promises all the time. Just think of RD above or KD in above clips democracy is meaningless to these people the UNION is their god. Remember the ‘vow’ and then look at what labour denied Scotland. Their words and actions reflect all that we need to know about them and there ‘union’.

  10. Artyhetty

    Scheming lying gits basically making up and changing the rules to suit themselves. They wouldn’t know democracy if it hit them in the face.

    The unionist britnats have sold Scotland down the river, and will continue to do so, while siphoning away Scotland’s revenues from the abundant resources that Scotland has. All while portraying Scotland as a subsidy junkie. Excellent job these unionists have done to shaft Scotland and fck Scotland’s people over.

    What do the people want, a continuation of the same, or to take a different, more prosperous, independent path, they need to decide. Sad thing is, it’s the poor who will continue to suffer while shackled to this dysfunctional so called union.

    The level of inequality in the UKok is a disgrace, and the unionists will not allow Scotland to strive for and succeed at making our country a more equal place to live.

    We can’t let the unionist britnats take Scotland backwards, we just can’t.

  11. INDY2

    “…And in the past they must remain…”

  12. Proud Cybernat

    So, if I stand against Colonial Roofie-babes at the next Holyrood election and she gets 51% and I get 49%, I can claim victory and take my seat in Hoyrood?

    Right Roofie?

  13. Alt Clut

    Why would a UK government ever want to enable another referendum after we scared the crap out of them last time and their situation is massively worse now than it was then ?

    If indyref2 is to happen it will have to be on the authority of our own Parliament. While we regard that as legitimate Britnats will not.

    If we do it anyway and win narrowly they will howl about unilateral, unconstitutional and illegal action opening the door for themselves to be invited to take all sorts of extraparliamentary action against us through courts, and worse, by Ruthie, Kezia et al.

    So we have to win by a majority so large, and with so many cameras on us, that such options would be internationally too expensive for them.

    Can we win such a majority now ? Unlikely !

    So what do we do ? Reactivate our YES groups, isolate the abusers of those who don’t presently agree with us among or ranks, and start a long campaign of electronic and face to face persuasion for a YES vote.

    Repeating that the yoons and MSM are unfair for the ten thousandth time is useless. There is no shortcut, it’s not, “all going to be over by Christmas”. Let’s get real, get off the computer chairs and get on with it.

  14. manandboy

    Unionist politicians in Scotland are like tics on a dog. Leaving a tic in place is to condemn the pet to itching and infection. Best to get rid of tics completely.
    Never vote for a Unionist politician – they only suck the blood out of Scotland, while spreading Westminster propaganda to poison the public’s perception of Scotland.

  15. yesindyref2

    Democracy is a dish best served democratically.

  16. Peter McCulloch

    This is the Unionist World of democracy, they will make up whatever rules they need to in their attempts to undermine the right of the people of Scotland to self determination.

  17. Proud Cybernat

    Union Jack Flash…

  18. Capella

    They are not democrats. Pure and simple as that. They are in the tradition of Lord Braxfield, the “hingin’ judge”:

    “the British constitution is the best that ever was since the creation of the world, and it is not possible to make it better…

    And yet a little further on: “A government in any country should be like a corporation; and in this country it is made up of the landed interest, which alone has a right to be represented. As for the rabble who have nothing but personal property, what hold has the nation of them? They may pack up their property on their backs, and leave the country in the twinkling of an eye.”

    From Robert Louis Stevenson

    Luckily Nicola Sturgeon disagrees with them and so do at least half of the Scottish population.

  19. Bill McLean

    Amazed that some people, including the Scottish Government, still think that being nice and reasonable will gain us our rightful Independence. NO ONE, NO COUNTRY ever gained anything by being nice to British unionists. Time to up the arguments but not among ourselves. They are building a rhetoric now that the YES inclined are falling apart and what I see here sometimes must give them comfort. Unite for our right to independence! The alternative is dreadful to consider.

  20. Highland Wifie

    What Roofie meant was 51.89% would be needed to win (like as in EU referendum)

  21. dandy dons 1903

    British Nationalists/Unionists in both Scotland and England have always taken Scotland and the Scottish people for granted,all you have to do is look at the arrogance they display over brexit to show you that this isnt a union worth saving.

  22. Robert Louis

    The BritNAT establishment likes the so-called ‘unwritten’ constitution, since it allows them to change the norms and rules as they go along, to maintain their positions of power and authority over ordinary folks, no matter what.

    ‘unwritten constitution’ = NO constitution.

    Sadly, some folks, especially in England, wear the ‘unwritten constitution’ nonsense like a badge of honour. Britain is ‘special’ don’t you know, they will tell you, ‘we have an unwritten constitution’.

    None so blind as those who will not see (or who believe the lies the BBC tells them 24/7).

  23. Petra

    They can all say what they like right now. We WILL be having a Referendum on Independence before March 2019 and we WILL win it.

    Following that, the day after, LOL, the number one priority will be setting up our own broadcasting service.

    What will they say? What will they do then? No more talk of Independence, thank God, just getting on with the day job in Scotland totally undeterred.

  24. dandy dons 1903

    And also I agree that its long past the time for the SNP/YES side to stop being nice to the britnats and media chums, time to take the gloves off! You dont get anywhere being nice to such craven obsequious crawlers like the species known as the britnat/unionist. Fight Fire with Fire!

  25. Doug Bryce

    It is obvious what is happening…

    1) The UK government will try and delay a second independence vote until after next holyrood election (in desperate hope there is no longer a pro independence majority : which is possible under the proportional representation system).

    2) The UK government will also delay any vote until after we exit EU. Therefore EU citizens will be denied a vote.

    This is an open assault on democracy.
    Scotland didn’t vote for Brexit AND is also being denied a say on the matter.

  26. Greannach

    Nicol Stephen, eh? A much more impressive Head Boy that even Douglas Alexander.

  27. heedtracker

    Yoon culture, red and blue tory, treats Scotland like what it is to them, a British region, of a mere 5.4 million, or similar population of your average English county, like Yorkshire or Derbyshire say.

    And we clearly do need to be brought to heel, at the present moment in the Great British tory timeline.

    Once youre in that regional shite for regional types mentality, well you can and say anything you like,democracy is only for biggies in London. Their BBC Scotland gimps will only hammer it all home, day in day out.

    Good example of BBC Scotland’s quite spectacular fraud on its Scottish region today, so far. No nation state would tolerate these bare faced liars. Regions do because enough regionals voted Naw Thanks for it, for safety and being part of something far bigger, greater, British.

    Former MP Michelle Thomson criticises SNP leadership
    6 August 2017
    From the section Scotland politics Share this with Facebook Share this with Twitter Share this with Messenger Share this with Email Share

    Share share share share, command their beeb gimps. Its how it all works in toryboy teamGB.

  28. Dorothy Devine

    Nicol ( The Nose) Stephen .

    Did a bypass or the like stumble around his house and therefore never enjoyed fruition?

    Aberdeen still waiting is it?

  29. Capella

    Lord Stephen if you don’t mind. And even if your do mind if you don’t mind.

  30. wull2

    TM says now is not the time.
    It is time the EU stood up for Scotland, a country who voted to stay in the EU.

  31. Brian Powell

    Not really OT:

    “Government Ministers dismissed as a ‘joke’ plans by the Scottish Government to hold a Referendum in northern Britain. The Prime Minister said the UK Government must eventually assert control over Scotland”.

    Doesn’t seem unusual to you, in fact we’ve heard all this, but I’ve used ‘poetic’ licence.

    Here is the real text from a section on Syria in the National,

    ” A senior government minister dismissed as a ‘joke’ plans by the Kurdish-led administration in northern Syria to hold elections. deputy Foreign Minister, Faisal Mekdad also said the Syrian government must eventually assert control over Kurdish-led areas”.

    That’s how we figure in Westminster plans, be it from Tories or Labour.

  32. heedtracker

    Capella says:
    7 August, 2017 at 12:55 pm
    Lord Stephen if you don’t mind. And even if your do mind if you don’t mind

    I voted for this dude once. He was the youngest ever MP, ever, or something. He took the seat after a long term toryboy keeled over and ascended up to toryboy heaven, like a tory Jesus. But he was out after a few months in the 92 GE.

    He’s only interesting now, in that he’s been really well rewarded by teamGB for his services to yoon culture but he’s actually done sweet FA, which is clearly just perfect, on planet toryboy.

    Its funny to think that saps like me in Aberdeen thought this hip young dude might make an impact on Aberdeen, in the 90’s but Lord Nicol has merely become the almost perfect living embodiment of the great UKOK toryboy stuffed shirt, sock puppet, shill, in his Scotland region.

    He’s in wiki, under “great UKOK toryboy stuffed shirt, sock puppet, shill, in his Scotland region.”

  33. Dr Jim

    I sincerely hope the Unionist politicians who opposed the SNP building our new world leading bridge will not as I’m led to believe be turning up to cream off some of the credit for it’s building

    And that was all of them

    It’s bad enough the British Queen who purred against Scotlands self determination turning up to cut bits of ribbon when her own ministers said we shouldn’t have a bridge at all and it was all a SNP vanity project

    Tories of one colour or another constantly undermining Scotlands abilities to progress then lying about it afterwards
    Perhaps they’ll want breast pumps installed every 50 metres on the bridge or want to allow offensive behavioural chanting to take place as folk drive across or who knows maybe an Orange band to play death to alternative religions music

    They should just change their chant from no surrender to no progression because that’s all they ever want to do “Stop Scotland” progressing

    ps: The part of Michelle Thompsons interview the BBC chose to cut out where she demanded that the media and particularly the BBC apologise to her for the way in which they hounded her and mis reported the situation in order to smear the SNP

    I’m well offended today by Unionist liars, I could crush a grape

  34. Snode1965

    Doug Bruce…
    If the next referendum is delayed until after April 2019 I don’t see that as a problem.
    Last time every Scottish citizen got a vote. If the British Establishment are adamant that citizens from European countries are to be excluded then it will be Scots born only.

  35. Song42

    Proud Cybernat’s link @ 11.50am

    All Britnats should dress like this every day! A beautiful laughing stock for all to see. Idiots.
    I mean they actually walk about like this, ffsakes.

  36. Stoker

    Peter A Bell once wrote that British Labour don’t exist to challenge established power. That they exist to absorb dissent that may otherwise challenge established power.

    I totally agree with that school of thought but where does that leave the British Lib Dems? One thing is certain though, they can all be grouped under the Undemocratic Unionists Umbrella.

    British Lib Dems, political whores who’ll jump into bed with anyone for a sniff of power.

  37. colin alexander

    The UK Government can deny the Scottish Parliament anything it wants to, until such time as the people of Scotland decide Holyrood is Scotland’s sovereign parliament, so WM couldn’t overrule it, when it’s a Scottish issue.

    If Holyrood were sovereign within the Union, Holyrood could decide on independence or everything else without any need for permission or consultation with anyone else outside Scotland. It would be answerable only to the people of Scotland and that would be via a democratic mandate via election manifestos.

    Until that happens, the Nicol Stephens and Ruth Davidsons of this world can continue to spout their pro-Westminster domination mantra.

  38. colin alexander

    Stu Campbell said: “People vote for a political party in an election for a whole raft of reasons, and may even do so while actively opposing some of that party’s policies.

    (Every mainstream UK and Scottish party, for example, supports continuation of the monarchy, so republicans voting SNP, Labour, Lib Dem or Conservative are all doing so with reservations.)

    But with a referendum, there’s no mistaking the majority view.”

    True, but with a referendum, what did No voters vote for? What was the majority view?

    We know what they voted against: Independence.

    ( But, as I explained already, it wasn’t independence they were offered, it was semi-independent “UK Monetary Union” and economic and political Union with the EU that YES campaigned for).

    But people can vote NO for a number of reasons too.

    Did No voters want The Vow: Devo to the Max? Home Rule?

    Did they want WM domination as we have now where WM can give or take powers like a parent dishing out sweeties to a child?

    Did they want the Calman proposals of more powers under WM devolution?

    Did NO voters choose NO because they wanted Scotland’s guaranteed membership of the EU?

    Did NO voters want Holyrood sovereignty for Scotland within the UK Union, but voted NO because they were told it was full independence because the shared currency arguments put forward by YES were rubbish?

    The problem with a referendum is that NONE of these were on the voting paper.

    So, a referendum, which at first seems the clearest way of establishing the will of the people becomes voting for a pig in a poke. Or like the Brexit referendum, people can be sold a pup.

    We know the UK Govt did it already, why would anyone want that same opportunity for the UK Govt to rig a referendum again?

    Whereas, an election manifesto is up to the party to decide on. The UK Govt can’t dictate what the SNP put in their manifesto, such as Holyrood sovereignty.

    If the people vote for Holyrood sovereignty the UK Govt must accept the right of self-determination. That would be self-determination.

    Once Holyrood is sovereign it’s free to decide what it wants once it has obtained the democratic mandate. People have to VOTE FOR specifically laid out policies.

  39. ben madigan

    O/T to a certain extent
    here’s the DUP’s game-plan for post-brexit northern ireland.

    I imagine Unionist parties have planned/are planning something similar for Scotland

    PS to whoever wrote above that the EU should look out for Scotland –

    It can’t until Scotland votes for Independence and then it certainly will.
    Don’t you think it’s in the EU interests to get the whole of Ireland and Scotland under its wing?
    And maybe even Gibraltar too?

    As by-products of England’s Brexit?

  40. Ian McCubbin

    Inevitable a form of UDI is only way Scotland will be independent. While refereda worked in Nordic and other states. They wont wont work here with such a divisive state and pro unionist media.
    I have been arguing this for months.
    Time to say it more often

    Before we go though we need lots un place like national investment bank, foreign policy, taxation and money printing and gdp against how much to print. Plenty of sympathetic activists with the knowledge and position to set systems in place for the process of operation.
    A start would be to challenge RBS to pay up 25% corporation tax for continued use of Scotland in their name.

  41. Dorothy Devine

    Anyone else tired of the hair shirt independence supporters splattered across the media?

    Anyone got any screen shots of the lovely words of encouragement the YESSERS got above and below the line in the Daily Mail , Daily Record , Daily Express , Scotsman , Herald , Guardian , Telegraph , Press and Journal ,Courier et al?

    I know so many wrongs do not make one right – I think that’s the way the saying goes or has gone!

  42. Cactus

    “But perhaps more of the media ought to be asking the Unionist parties what WOULD constitute a democratic mandate, rather than what DOESN’T.”

    Yeah, if they continue to keep moving the goalposts around to suit themselves and their agenda, the media SHOULD (at the very least) be pushing for a clarification of the above.

    I imagine voters of all persuasions would like to know.

    Oh, to be a normal icountry.

  43. Alex Clark

    @Ian McCubbin

    You might have missed the link that was posted in the last paragraph of this article under NB. It was this.

  44. Auld Rock

    UDI – Said that all along.

    Auld Rock

  45. SquirrelTowers

    God love you Rev Stu…that top bit about Mr Torrance made me blurt Earl Grey tea over my keyboard.

    Well after a wee break over the school holidays its good to be back and enjoying your evisceration of the ‘quality’ journalism of the press again…

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