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The false borders

Posted on June 21, 2014 by

The second weekend in June played host to the Selkirk Common Riding, the oldest of the Ridings events in the Scottish Borders. For the uninitiated, this centuries-old tradition incorporates a series of festivities in the town, the centrepiece of which is a cavalcade of several hundred horses galloping around the perimeter of the Royal Burgh, ensuring the town’s ancient boundaries are in good order (ie that no pesky Sassenachs have invaded the territory).

Despite being raised in the nearby village of Ashkirk and attending Selkirk High School, I was never interested in the Riding. Even in primary school whilst being taught the lyrics to “Auld Selkirk” and “Hail Smilin Morn” it didn’t seem relevant – I only went to my first ride-out last year because my Polish girlfriend was intrigued.


That’s when the penny dropped.

After the Standard Bearer returns, having found the town’s boundaries to be unsullied and free from English intrusion, the ceremony concludes with, erm, a Union Flag being hoisted, and a rendition of “God Save the Queen”. It’s hard to see what the point of an English invasion would be.

My own earliest recollections of international affairs include Princess Diana’s death, the Good Friday agreement, and the “beef on the bone” scandal. With the World Cup under way, another memory coming to mind is of a television being wheeled into the primary school classroom so we could watch England games at the 2002 event.

Again, despite being but a wee lad, I had the inkling that something wasn’t quite right about this arrangement. I don’t go proactively against English sporting endeavour (the media hype surrounding said endeavour is another matter), but why were we to assume support for them in Scotland’s absence? Why not Ireland, or France, or, I don’t know, Sweden? Costa Rica? Each seemed to make as much sense.

I’ve always been a bit obstinate when it comes to trends, a hipster before hipsters were hip, so in my teens I decided I wanted to add to that by being a political rebel. Approaching the 2005 election I took a partiality to the Tories on the sole premise that Labour had taken us into Iraq, and the Tories were the vessels making the most audible noise against the Labour government.

I was also a great fan of Boris Johnson’s wittering ways, and made the semi-serious point of penning “Vote4 Boris” on my knuckles the day he was elected Mayor of London. By the end of high school, having actually looked at their policies, I realised the foolishness of my ways, and went for the safer option of backing the Monster Raving Loonies for a while.

My time at Abertay University has probably shaped my views more than anything else. I dabbled in student politics, and ran for the Student Association executive committee myself. But more than this, I was able to experience a diversity of cultures, nationalities and backgrounds far beyond anything I had encountered at home.

I’ve made friends from all areas of England, Ireland, Spain, Finland, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Cameroon, India, Russia and the USA, and many other places in between. I’ve met a few people with money to lavish on owning cars and frequenting expensive nightclubs, but I’ve met many more who worship at the altar of reduced-price supermarket shelves, and scavenge furniture from second-hand traders, or even pick up thrown-out items from the street.


The independence debate crept up on me gradually over the last couple of years. I guess a part of the initial appeal of Yes for me, as described above, was the unyielding dissident within – the chance to be part of a seismic revolution in history. A wise man once said that if you can’t figure out what to do in life, find something bigger than you and devote yourself to it. Other than some global catastrophe (or world peace) I can’t imagine a much bigger change in my or anybody else’s life on a macro level than the redrawing of international borders.

Since graduation, I’ve spent stints of varying months in the dole queue, in a bank, in a call centre, as a charity canvasser, and volunteering with homeless organisations. I come from a relatively affluent middle-class family, but I’ve been made starkly aware of the tribulations of being unable to find work in 21st century Britain, and the London-centric nature of the jobs market. Fellow alumni of Abertay – bright, intelligent, assiduous people with good degrees – have taken almost a year to find even short-term contract jobs; others simply gave up on Scotland and moved south.

Then there’s the plight of homeless people in every other shop front, and the prevalence of food banks. Sites like Wings and National Collective, not to mention Private Eye and some of the mainstream media, have opened my eyes to the imbalances and injustices entrenched in an ostensibly equal union of nations.

I don’t advocate change for change’s sake, but what real alternatives are there to the flagrant right-wing authoritarians of Westminster? Being a typically fresh-faced and optimistic student, I voted Liberal Democrat at the 2010 elections, and the rest of that tale is history; they’re discredited beyond repair as long as Nick Clegg is at the helm.

The Conservatives are the Conservatives. Labour have the ineffectual Ed Miliband leading them, and in any case daren’t go any farther left of the Tories than they need to in order to challenge for Middle England seats. And UKIP are just plain terrifying.


I’m one of those creatures often claimed to be a myth by many in the No camp – an independence supporter who doesn’t follow the SNP. I’d say my politics sit somewhere between the Nationals and the Greens, which is why I have no desire to become a subscriber to either party – neither alone matches my views closely enough.

Ironically, a Scottish Labour with traditional working-class values would probably be more appealing to me than either of those. It’s a pity such a thing doesn’t exist, yet.

Having said all this, I remain a sceptic by nature, and until I’ve marked my X on the ballot paper, I’ll never say my position is absolute. There are poor and fallacious assertions and shouting, stupid voices on each side. “Impartial” statistics and “expert” analyses are rallied back and forth amongst the mudslingers, confounding even the most hardened of debaters. But in most cases I’ve found the final undisputed word has come down on the side of favouring independence.

(Moreover, Yes commentators frequently cross into No territory to take on and dispel their opponents’ arguments, whereas the converse is far more rare.)

If it’s a No vote on September 18, I think I might emigrate to Poland and become an English teacher. Even if mój polski nie jest bardzo dobra it’s a wonderful place, and the prospect of staying here looks ominous whoever gets into Westminster in 2015.

But if there’s a Yes, I’ll be more excited than I can ever recall to engage with the culture of my country and the wider world – in politics, poetry, philosophy or wherever.

A totally blank sheet would be daunting, but with strong foundations from the existing country already in place we don’t even have that problem to worry about. It’s more of a paint-by-numbers thing, where all we have to do is decide on the colours.

I can feel it – this is the start of something good.

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    281 to “The false borders”

    1. JohnDM says:

      Excellent posting Adam


    2. Calum Craig says:

      Another 2010 LibDem voter (like myself) who won’t be making that mistake again.

    3. Calum Craig says:

      And, seriously, they made you watch England World Cup games?! I guess I am “lucky” to be old enough that Scotland were at World Cups when I was at School.

    4. Jim Thomson says:

      Very eloquently put Adam.

      We have high hopes for the 18th of September, and of course the following day 🙂

      If it all goes horribly pear-shaped though, we will have to consider what the future is likely to hold for us and our lads within the UK. Not much by all estimations.

    5. JimmyC says:

      Excellent piece, Adam. Like you, I am also one of those mythical non-SNP Yes supporters. I just bought the Common Weal book, you should give it a gander – some excellent stuff. I’d vote for a Common Weal party any day of the week.

    6. JimnArlene says:

      Let us all hope that this is, indeed, the start of something good. No longer will our bright young things, feel the need to leave for a “better life”.

    7. Flower of Scotland says:

      Enjoyed reading that article. Thanks Adam!

    8. Grouse Beater says:

      Well, if we’re musing personally …

      I joined the SNP to ensure there is no going back.

      Only the SNP offer the choice of progress.

      If I wear the celulean blue jacket now as example people will know what I stand for, and persuaded, join the cause, and I’ll share their effort until the end is achieved.

    9. annie says:

      Enjoyed hearing your story, lets hope you don’t have to make that trip to Poland except for a holiday.

    10. Big Jock says:

      Aye since when did protecting Scotlands borders involve a Union flag.Surely this is reinventing history on the part of the common riding.Its a pre union tradition.The last time I saw it on telly it was a saltire they raised ..has this been hijacked.Our running track at Grangemouth has been hijacked by unionists.In the year of Scotland’s commonwealths they decide to put a union flag in the canteen.Have I missed something the unionists had their bloody jubilee and Olympics 2 years ago!

    11. galamcennalath says:

      Very good article.

      “I can feel it – this is the start of something good.” …. me too!

    12. scottish_skier says:

      A nice article, thanks Adam.

      Incidentally, I was in Selkirk this morning outside what I think’s called the ‘Victoria Halls’ (wee one doing a show rehearsal).

      I discovered in the grounds a lovely little monument to Flodden, with small granite ‘book’ plaques telling the story in a semi-circle around a marble saltire.

      It finished with the how the sad tale of the battle was immortalised in ‘Flowers of the Forest’; the ‘Flower(s) of Scotland’ being of course it’s fighting men. Selkirk itself was hit particularly hard here by Flodden.

      Anyway, as I climbed back into my car moved somewhat by this little monument, a van pulls up with Yes stickers all over it which gave me a big smile.

      Then, whaddayaknow.. Micheal Moore comes out of the Hall and gives me a brief ‘look’; my car likewise being adorned… 🙂

    13. M4rkyboy says:

      Am i the only one who finds the Union flag inappropriate for this particular commemoration?

    14. Neil Craig says:

      You have misunderstood what the ridings were about. They were not about keeping out the English.

      They were about keeping out the local aristocracy.
      Making sure that each year the local laird had not moved the marker posts a few yards closer to the town centre. And doing so in sufficient force and visibility that no laird was going to stand in the way.

      These ceremonies were common throughout Europe – particularly so in our borders because the borders were a particularly lawless land – aristos of both sides rieving anything not nailed down.

      If you want to put a modern political spin to them they were the emerging urban entrepreneurial class asserting their rights against the capricious power of the “great and good” of Scotland of the time. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it libertarianism but the roots were there.

      The English were, usually, on the other side of the border and not impinging on the town borders.

      Ass often the “nats” do not understand the heritage they claim to be defending. To be fair it is a common failing.
      PS You appear rather easily terrified if that is what David Coburn’s picture inspires in you 😉

    15. Dr Ew says:

      Lovely little piece on your journey, Adam. Just minor but important point – we will not be starting with a blank sheet.

      The 19th September will bring all sorts of baggage – a disgruntlement of negative Naysayers, a shaken and probably panicky next-door neighbour, a tangled constitutional conundrum with a fast-approaching General Election, a belligerent and vocal minority of English nationalism, an angry and desperate cabal of rootless Scottish MPs, not to mention complex and nervy negotiations looming, uncertainty in stocks and currency markets, and the daunting prospect of actually having to DO this independence thing.

      And you what? I wouldn’t have it any other way!

      VOTE YES!!!

    16. Grant Cruickshank says:

      Great piece, Adam. Really nice read.

      For the rest of us, it’s [robably worth pointing out that The Borders is that pesky region (that I grew up in) that keeps sneakily voting Tory MPs into office while the rest of us work hard to keep the Scottish political map entirely free of blue. LOTS of wealthy landowners in that region, so seeing a Union Flag being paraded around isn’t that surprising:
      (scroll down for colour maps of the last couple of elections)

    17. heedtracker says:

      It’s a bit down beat but take nobody’s word for it, works too. Also, what a face that UKIP blokes got! Thanks for that BBC.

    18. macart763m says:

      Good post Adam and hopefully welcome to an exciting new adventure. 🙂

    19. scottish_skier says:

      David Coburn’s picture inspires in you

      It’s more the fact he’s a racist that I find him disturbing.

      May I ask if my half-‘immigrant’ little girl is sufficiently Scottish/British for UKIP or is she a problem?

    20. JGedd says:

      It’s for Adam’s generation, that of my own children, and those to come that I am voting for independence. We lose far too many of our talented young people every year, which is why our population is virtually what it was in the 1960s.

      My journey to Yes started long before Adam was born but I am impressed with Adam’s thoughtful (if idiosyncratic!) political progress. Too many are born into a tradition of voting for a particular party and never question. Adam’s intelligent scrutiny of the present political scene displays a confident maturity which is to be admired.

      I hope for his sake that we do not let his generation and future generations down by voting No in September.

    21. Barry Blust says:

      Always an independent myself, I hope in out new Scotland we will no longer feel the need to sacrifice individual ideals and opinions to the massive ineffectualism of party politics. Divide and conquer works, and can turn the will of the many into the will of one or a committee of people who steer things. I can steer, so can you and hopefully we will meet along the path to freedom.

    22. galamcennalath says:

      Personally. I have always found it deeply offensive to see a Union flag hoisted anywhere in Scotland. If it doesn’t actually always represent everything which is wrong, then it certainly symbolises it!

    23. M4rkyboy says:

      It’s the fact David Coburn’s a glaiket,politically inept, bag of racist pish who has nothing but a mindless stream of moronic,easily debunked hyperbole as his main weapon representing Scotland on a International stage that gets my goat.

    24. dramfineday says:

      SS @ 4.03

      plus one regarding my grand daughter.

    25. scottish_skier says:

      @Neil Craig

      In 1513, 80 men from Selkirk followed James IV into battle at Flodden. Only one, Fletcher, survived to return, weary and wounded but bearing a captured English flag which he raised aloft and then cast to the ground. The Flodden legend came to be associated with the Common Riding, with the Royal Standard Bearer as the central figure and the casting of the colours of the main ceremony.

      Also, how come economic libertarian (free markets) UKIP are against freedom of movement?

      A truly free market requires the free movement of capital / goods / services and labour. Why do UKIP think they should be able to limit my ability to grow my business by deciding for me who I’m allowed to employ? My middle eastern staff (oil and gas) already have a hard enough time with the UK border force (they’ve asked my Muslim female staff what colour of underwear they have on at Heathrow) under the ‘foreigners go home’ van Tories never mind what UKIP propose.

      This is another reason I could never vote UKIP. In addition to being both for and against independence, they are both for and against the free market / economic liberalisation. It seems to me they have absolutely no idea what they want other than they don’t like the EU and non-British people.

    26. Robert Craig says:

      Enjoyed reading your thoughts Adam, very well reasoned and balanced. Hope I make Mike Dailly’s “WoS supporters” list with this posting

    27. AnneDon says:

      An excellent article, Adam.

      Your comments about your fellow graduates interested me. It always surprises me that the No campaign show the achievements of our youngsters outwith Scotland as a “benefit of the union”. Most countries want their youngsters to be able to achieve their potential at home.

      I suppose our political and media “elite” all worship at the altar of London’s importance, so assume that we should “aspire” to go to London, as they do.

    28. msean says:

      Great post,thanks. An interesting read.

    29. Appleby says:

      What amazes me is that anyone following Scottish politics was suprised at Lib Dems turning out the way they did when they did same sort of thing in the Scottish Parliament before too. There was plenty warning ahead of time but often people put no more effort into their general election votes than deciding what to have for tea that day.

      Any real examination of their politics also showed they were long since shifting so far over to the right they were almost sitting on the laps of the Tories. Lib Dems did exactly what I expected of them – and their hardcore supporters happily chirp on twitter and elsewhere about how wonderful them and their ideas are, regardless of the horrid mess they get tangled up in, typically believing in supporting “the party” above anything else – ideals, the public, etc.

      Trying to point at Nick Clegg as the scapegoat for all this is a fool’s game. Getting rid of him does not wash away all the sins or make them into a new party you can suddenly trust. You are playing right into their hands. They can change the face at the front once again and you’ll end up blindly voting for them in the hope they’ve magically become nice guys or somehow substantially different because of a mere change of face for their party leader. The ruling clique’s ideals within the party remain the same, as do the mindless cheerleaders and right-wing elements who support them.

      The biggest problem with UK politics is the gulliability of the public and their short memories for betrayals by the parties and those who work for them. If people remembered what was done to them and voted accordingly then we’d live in a much better world. The worst of all are those who vote for a party simply because they have always voted for that party (or their father/husband/etc.).

    30. Neil Craig says:


      “came to be associated with the Common Riding”

      Came to be is precisely what I said.

      On immigration you demonstrate exactly why capitalists are not generally a very good advert for capitalism (the argument for capitalism is the demonstrable correlation, worldwide, between the amount of economic freedom and economic success). You want the right to bring in as much cheap labour as possible for your company’s benefit and hang any other economic or cultural consequencies.

      There is nothing wrong with not wanting unlimited immigration (though only the Greens OPENLY stand for that). However if you want 6 billion people to be able to come here to use our NHS you have a duty to explain how this will be paid for and even the greens refuse to do that.

    31. Dougie says:

      Unionists love to rewrite history Hawich and Selkirk both remember the defeat and capture of English raiders and Selkirk the slaughter of Flodden

      They also love the Myth of the union forgetting the blockade of ports the threat of invasion and that it saved us Scotland was not bust impoverished but then when your neighbour stops you trading
      And then what they never mention England’s 18 million pound debt that yup we helped pay there followed 40 years of severe hardship and faminr as Scotland was taxed to the hilt a no vote is a anti Scotland vote

    32. Robert Craig says:

      Scottish Skier – I remember coming back from the middle-east after 10 years working and living there. I arrived at Heathrow with my Moroccan wife and our daughter to be asked by Immigration how long we intended to stay. My reply was something along the lines of ‘” as long as it takes to get a plane to Glasgow”, he didn’t mean in the airport apparently, silly me. Despite the appropriate visa in her Moroccan passport we had extended questioning which verified ‘our’ status – my daughter and me with UK passports of course. Just me being a ‘chippy’ Jock I suppose – ah well.

    33. manandboy says:

      Well done, Adam.

      Yours is a story reflecting the experience of many.

      Honours graduates who can’t find work
      in an oil rich country,
      which can’t afford to care for
      the poor the elderly and the disabled.

      Meanwhile the Monarch takes delivery of a new £2 million coach.

      And on this very day, the Establishment gathers for another day at Ascot to play at being super rich.

      Nothing wrong with that just so long as you’re taking care of the less well off at the same time – which they are not.

      This is the Great Britain dedicated to ‘pooling and sharing’ according to the Unionist parties.

      ‘Better together’ and ‘having the best of both worlds’.

      If you asked the racegoers at Ascot today for their views on BT they would call for a steward and have you removed.

      Establishment rules.

      Alongside hope let there be a decision, followed by action.

      Vote Yes, with fresh hope.

    34. Capella says:

      Good article Adam. I too hope that you will be able to live and work in Scotland and help build a better country.
      My understanding is that Nigel Farage is a City of London trader and former member of the Conservative Party. Since the brokers and financiers of the City do not want to be regulated by the EU, they are most likely campaigning to leave the EU, using the natural xenophobia of many of their fans, to strengthen David Cameron’s hand in obtaining opt=outs or, failing that, actually take the UK out of Europe. They are really the “City of London” Party.

    35. jon esquierdo says:

      Adam you are an artist and paint an excellent picture

    36. Well written, Neil. Just one point, while coming from a Labour supporting background myself, I think the chance of that party reinventing itself after the referendum is remote. They will still not accept that their day to rule Scotland has passed, and quite possibly, will never return.

    37. Vambomarbeleye says:

      Thank god I am of a age when we didn’t have tv at school. Seemed to remember getting radio piped through the class rooms for singing together but that was it. Happy days and the lochgelly tawes. Best days of your life.

    38. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Well written, Neil.”

      Did you mean Neil?

    39. Lockie says:

      Alex Beveridge, I have a feeling in my water, there will be a new party in Scotland, made up with say, Denis Canavan, Jim Sillers & 50 odd redundant MP’s from Westminster to follow, most of whom will have been doing everything they could to stop Indy, The Scottish Socialt something or other !

    40. HandandShrimp says:

      I am guessing Coburn had just found out where his pet ferret had got to.

    41. Clootie says:

      Dear Daily Mail Reader


      I have been held here against my will for over 2 years. I am beaten daily and forced to recite burns every morning
      In the evenings we must chant “Rev” over and over as we whip ourselves with frayed union jacks.
      For the rest of the day we are chained to a desk and forced to sent out emails to our betters in the MSM. These are vile statements of fact that should never have seen the light of day. All that work with McCrone now wasted.

      The Daily Mail is my only chance now – please pass on my message. There is a great danger that Scots will learn the truth about the union and vote YES!

    42. scottish_skier says:

      You want the right to bring in as much cheap labour as possible for your company’s benefit and hang any other economic or cultural consequencies.

      I never said that. My ‘cheap labour’ are hardly cheap. They are highly educated oil and gas engineers, commonly PhD level. They are happy to travel to the middle east / know the languages and culture so help us work globally.

      The oil and gas industry is undergoing a massive boom with huge demands for staff that companies are struggling to meet. Tory / UKIP solution? Restrict immigration / put a greater burden on business by making employers (me) jump through more and more bureaucratic hoops to employ highly qualified staff.

      Jesus wept we are partly owned by a well-known university, have offices next to Weatherford, have staff on ‘exceptional talent’ visas and the UK ‘anti-foreigner police’ suddenly turn up to check us for ‘illegals’. How do you think that looks to our staff and clients? We’re not a dodgy take away FGS. The UK is a bloody embarrassment.

      Anyway, my point is UKIP are not economically libertarian. Stop saying they are. They’re protectionist and do not believe in free markets.

      As for culture. We employ a lot of Iranians. Lovely people, very highly educated (better than the UK often), and culturally many are closer to me than UKIPers in their views/outlook on life.

      However if you want 6 billion people to be able to come here to use our NHS you

      Scotland’s biggest group of immigrants are from England. They ‘use our NHS’, ‘take our jobs and homes’ here etc just as much as any immigrant group. Are you ok with that? I think it’s great – Scotland could do with a bit of a population boost to help its economy. I don’t mind if this is from England, Poland, whatever.

    43. Croompenstein says:

      Right, who shoved the Queens baton up Coburns arse?..come on now! who did it?

    44. TJenny says:

      scottish_skier – with you on that, very well said. 🙂

    45. eezy says:

      “I can feel it – this is the start of something good.”

      I’ve been saying for a while that I think we’re winning.
      Have that Scottish disbelief though.
      Wonder where that comes from?

    46. annie says:

      O/T you have to laugh, Mike Dailly now tweeting that there is no list and thinks he has got one over the “cybernats”. More likely he sobered up and remembered he is supposed to be among other things a Human Rights Lawyer.

    47. TJenny says:

      annie – well that only works for Mikey if he thinks affording sqoodles of cybernats endless hours of hilarity yesterday, as getting one over on us. 😉

      If so, can’t wait for his next, ahem, bit of anti-cybernat oneupmanship. :-).

    48. Neil Craig says:

      Skier we are going to have to disagree on unlimited immigration (though I am astonished that you say you need to import Iranians to Scotland to run an oil company). The Middle East is hoaching with Scots/Brits who have the expertise to run such companies that the local demonstrably don’t. One of the reasons to be optimistic about our country.

      In any case you demonstrate my point about capitalists wanting immigration for their businesses but that it is the proper role of government to consider the problems. You may be happy with 6bn coming here for the NHS (even the poorest are close to being able to afford a Ryanair flight) but it is a genuine problem that will not be solved by denouncing anybody who asks it.

      Your claim that UKIP isn’t libertarian is silly. In Scottish politics it is not a label one appropriates for the publicity value. UKIP is the only party in Scotland that is not big state socialist (that includes the Tories).

    49. I am not sure how your misinformed attack on Selkirk Common Riding fits into the rest of your piece, but just for the record @neilcraig is quite correct to point out that the Common Ridings began as a need to protect our common land from local Scottish aristocrats. For the context you should read Andy Wightman’s “The Poor had no Lawyers.”

      There are seven flags cast at the climax of the Common Riding. The first and most important is the Burgh flag, which is a saltire with the town’s crest in the centre. This is followed by the flags of the Hammermen, Weavers, Fleshers, Exiles and the Merchant Company. The final flag to be cast is that of the Ex Soldiers. Their flag is indeed based on the Union Jack, hardly surprising given that the members of the ex-soldiers association have served in the British armed forces.

      A unionist friend suggested the ex-Soldiers would be forced to change their flag if we vote Yes. I patiently explained we are not voting for a Stalinist dictatorship and that the ex-Soldiers would be entitled to carry whichever flag they chose, before and after independence.

      Adam Learmonth is entitled to dislike the Selkirk Common Riding if he wishes but he will not do any favours to the Yes campaign by making ill-informed attacks on it.

      Andrew Anderson

    50. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      The only thing socialist about the TORIES, LABOUR and LIBDUMS is that they believe in sharing our wealth with themselves,

    51. Another Union Dividend says:

      Historical accuracy not a strong point at Selkirk Common Riding flag waving jingoism.

      Just back from Highland Show where No side were out in force accosting car owners to display No banners.

      Yes not to be seen but had a stall. However I engaged the clueless lady at No stall for over ten minutes by saving:

      “Can I ask you a simple question Should Ireland be independent?” After waffling for several minutes as she obviously knew nothing about Ireland she eventually said Yes. So I said thank you and left.

    52. R. Duncan says:

      Nice article Adam.

      I believe the younger voters won’t be swayed by the cares and smears. They won’t have the “blind loyalty” to a party that we the parents have. I trust our young . They are often naive but are open to much more possibilities. They understand the world better than we did at their age and still have the energy and imagination to aim higher.

      It comes down to who do you trust with the future of Scotland ?

      Westminster or our sons and daughters. I know who choose

    53. Croompenstein says:

      @R.Duncan – It comes down to who do you trust with the future of Scotland ?

      Watch wee duggy dug the No Nightmare..

    54. annie says:

      TJenny, and it continues, someone just tweeted, Mike Dailly having a Dallas moment, apparently he’s in the shower.

    55. scottish_skier says:

      (though I am astonished that you say you need to import Iranians to Scotland to run an oil company

      Not just us. BP, Total, Statoil…

      The UK government telling people in the UK ‘there’s only 10 years left’ for the past 40 years so those uppity jocks don’t get any ideas has of course discouraged people in the UK pursuing a career in oil and gas.

      As a result, in the middle of a massive investment boom not seen since the 1980’s, oil and gas companies are struggling to get staff.

      The Iranian education system is very, very good, particularly their oil and gas sectors.

      I’m glad to see the Scottish government promoting this area.

      Sorry, but you can’t be both economically libertarian and want restricted immigration. Just admit it; UKIP are protectionist. Not big state? LOL being extremely tough on who can live and work here = massive state control.

      I’ve never said I think we should just open the borders. However, UK government is harming Scotland’s economy by not promoting the massive value of the oil and gas industry and putting increasing restrictions on it’s ability to hire staff in both an anti-Scotland and anti-immigrant approach. UKIP appear to take an even harder line on the latter.

      You also never answered my question.

      Are you ok with English immigrants coming to Scotland and using its NHS, taking jobs here etc? Coming on for 10% of the population. This is your stated worry, I quote:

      “You may be happy with 6bn coming here for the NHS”

      i.e. the burden on public services. Is immigration from England a problem for you? If it isn’t, why is immigration from e.g. Poland an issue then?

    56. Gordon says:

      Never mind the doom, gloom and lies of the naysayers, when Scotland achieves its independence it will fare as well if not better than any country of 5 million souls. The Nationalists may be too optimistic, the Unionists fearmongering and lying, but the truth is that Scotland will be like any other European country – democratic!
      Let’s face it, we know what better together is like – we’ve experienced it (ugh) – and we can be fairly sure what independence will be like if we look at others who have gone before us.

    57. Black Douglas says:

      @scottish_skier says

      “The UK government telling people in the UK ‘there’s only 10 years left’ for the past 40 years so those uppity jocks don’t get any ideas has of course discouraged people in the UK pursuing a career in oil and gas.”

      Spot on, was advised back in the mid 80’s that the oil industry would be finished by the turn of century so I didn’t pursue a future in that industry but on second thoughts they didnt say which century.

    58. Oneironaut says:

      “I’m one of those creatures often claimed to be a myth by many in the No camp – an independence supporter who doesn’t follow the SNP.”

      Me too! 😀
      I’ve found I can sometimes catch those “I’m voting No because I hate Salmond” folks off-guard with that one, replying “Well I’m not an SNP voter, but I plan on voting Yes anyway.”
      Cue blank stare for a moment before they kind of stammer something along the lines of “Umm, well, I dunno… Err…” before suddenly finding an excuse to be somewhere else as quickly as possible.

      Good article there! 🙂

    59. Robert Peffers says:

      @Neil Craig, Keep up the good work, Neil.
      You are a fine asset for the YES cmpaign.

    60. Michael Stachura says:

      Me too, good Reverend. Until fairly recently I was a strong Labour supporter. But I just can stomach them anymore, north and south of the Debatable Lands. The prospect of a new beginning and a chance for Scotland to engage positively with itself and the world is something too big and exciting not to say Yes to.

      I live in Canada right now on a student visa. I’ve been here for four years. If Scotland doesn’t grasp this opportunity, I don’t think that I’ll want to come back to live and participate in a Scotland that might as well be called, once again, North Britain. It’s not sour grapes, it’s just I know I’d be too disapointed and feel underwhelmed in a territory that voted for what is instead of what could be. And Vancouver, Canada, is just the place to start a new, exciting and positive life.

    61. Paula Rose says:

      Talking of riding dears – that bus that will travel from Angus and Dundee down to Auld Reekie on the 4th of July still needs some more posteriors, get over to Off-topic and book a seat. Yet another wonderful Wings gathering – £15, and I promise to be more demure this time.

    62. Neil Craig says:

      Skier if you are not for unlimited immigration tell us what your number is? And how the SNP will enforce it?

      UKIP’s is 50,000 a year across the UK (Cameron’s was “10s not 100s of thousands but the difference is we weren’t lying) so anybody denouncing UKIP had better be able to show a figure several times higher.

      “Sorry, but you can’t be both economically libertarian and want restricted immigration”

      Ludicrous – when did the God of Political Definitions decree that? You are just your line that big business makes money out of immigrants so all the problems can go hang. There is no rule that we have to believe what our opponents would like us to believe.

      As for the 60 million English immigrants coming here to escape their poverty issue – it is not an issue because they aren’t. Economic migration flows from poor countries to rich in the same way water flows downhill. I can conceive of the possibility of Eck so bankrupting the country and putting the lights out that vast numbers of Scots flee south, in which case we might nit find welcome.

      I can even conceive of a UKIP government being elected at the next election (ie before Eck has managed his gotterdamerung) and achieving the 10% growth China has,or better, while Miliband takes rUK into deeper recession, in which case we would start getting that flow and have to consider what to do.

      I’ll admit such economic success, while technically feasible, even easy, is a long shot in Scotland’s political culture.

    63. Paula Rose says:

      What’s “nit find welcome”?

    64. caz-m says:


      Great summary of what is happening in the oil and gas industry. Only Independence will let Scotland get the true benefits of all our industries.


      Is there any polls due out this weekend?

    65. caz-m says:

      Paula Rose

      Paula, Is there a bus organised for the “Wings 4” night out for people coming from the Glasgow area?

    66. Paula Rose says:

      @ caz-m not as far as I know, organise one!

    67. Paula Rose says:

      btw caz-m polls is staying in this weekend 😉

    68. galamcennalath says:

      “not an SNP voter, but I plan on voting Yes”

      Excuse my military language, but it best suits my point I think. There are two battles being fought at the same time right now.

      One is the ongoing war between the SNP and those, mostly SLab, who are absolutely furious at nationalists taking power in Scotland through the ballot box. Unionist parties hierarchy and elements of the MSM (inc BBC) cannot forgive the SNP for this invasion of their space. You can sense elements of SLab think everything in Scottish politics is about them versus the SNP.

      The other is obviously the referendum campaign. This has turned out to be astonishly asymmetrical with Yes a strongly grassroots campaign driven from Scotland, and No driven by London political and media elite. No grassroots support is patchy and as far as I can see, mostly Tory in Tory areas. The No camp’s public face is, for the most part, leading Lab and Lib figures, mainly from Westminster.

      These battles are intertwined, but much of what the No camp does is not part of the immediate campaign, but more part of the long term feud. This damaging No and deflecting their fight.

      So how do I think this effects voting?

      I can understand Tories being Unionist and feeling British in culture and nationality. I just disagree with them. They might represent 20% at most of voters.

      SNP, Green, SSP etc members and most voters will vote Yes.

      That still leaves almost half, in round figures.

      Where are all the Labour and Liberal people going door to door, or manning stands, pushing No?

      While many Unionist Left of Tory voters see the advantages of Independence and will vote Yes, I also think the bitterness at the heart of Scottish politics for the last umpteen years has also taken a toll. SLab in particular has set aside their own values and policies just to take an opposite stance from the SNP. My feeling is that the ongoing war with the SNP has either deflected or sickened a lot of SLab away from their party lines into voting Yes.

      A lot of non SNP / Green etc voters will vote Yes

    69. galamcennalath says:

      Sorry, I went on a bit their!

    70. velofello says:

      Ever wondered how a country, unable to provide employment opportunities for its youth, is able to send more substantially more revenue to Westminster than is ever returned via the Barnet formula?

      Just seems so Roman Empire-ish, without the togas.

      Or, like taking candy from a baby?

    71. Sverre Koxvold says:

      I do not think anyone of you can fathom the cheer relish in living in the Highlands after being sprung from Norway, traveled the globe, and now living here for the past 14 years. The land just buzzes with excitement and joy in what is about to happen. It’s like the land is screaming for freedom.
      If we focus on the positive, the sharing, the joy in being here, then it will happen. Let the other side dwell in their fear, uncertainty and doubt.

    72. R. Duncan says:

      Oh Croompenstien

      I’ve had that poor wee dugs nightmare for weeks now though i sense things are changing.

      How the hell do i look my kids or grandkids in the eye after a no vote. I won’t . It cannot happen. The ultimate nightmare.

      Is Scotland to be the only country to be offered independence and turn it down.


      No more flag waving, representation of Scotland dismissed . we are not worthy of independence . North British but we were already that. A disgrace example to our own . Let someone else run things WE CAN’T.

      Isn’t it time to grow a pair Scotland ? Now while we still have resources and the talent to do something about the way we are heading in the 21st century.Do we need someone, hundreds of miles away in another country , to tell us whats good for us?

      If we lose this golden opportunity , this once in a generation or even a life time chance to take control of our destiny , we deserve nothing but contempt. 2nd class citizens ( or that should be subjects) of our own country.

      What an example we would be to generations to come. scotland (wee “s”) Fearties. Cowards . 90 minute patriots.

      God help us.


    73. caz-m says:


      “btw caz-m polls is staying in this weekend”

      Ask a silly question. lol

      Regarding buses, probably quicker getting a train from Queen St.

    74. HandandShrimp says:


      I am baffled as to why you think immigration is an issue. Scotland’s population has barely moved in 100 years. The UK’s has had close on to unlimited immigration over the last couple of decades and still Scotland’s population has barely moved. Attracting a couple of thousand more than we do at the moment is hardly 6 billion (although I don’t think Ryan Air have that many destinations or planes).

      I understand that you are bit Ukippy and UK wide this is one of their bones but it isn’t something that is top of the list of concerns in Scotland. Generally I think the Poles and Baltic states have settled in well. My niece is engaged to a nice Polish lad.

    75. Andy-B says:

      An interesting point of view Adam, a yes vote isn’t a vote for any particular party,but a vote for Scots to change Scotland for the better.

    76. Paula Rose says:

      I notice that in the draft constitution the national anthem will be decided by our parliament, in the event of a NO vote this will be a reserved matter. When I was working for Better Together St Kilda they received a copy of the anthem that would (in that event) be used…

      O fearties of Scotland
      When will we see our like again
      That gave up the fight for
      our own independence
      And cast a no vote to continue
      Westminster rule
      And sent the money
      Down south again

      The tills are bare now
      And politicians lie through and through
      We all did our duty
      Which we so dearly held
      And cast a no vote to continue
      Westminster rule
      And now we love being
      A region for sure

      18th of September is passed now
      A genetically challenging day
      But we can still vote now
      In our wee pretendy parliament
      And cast a wee vote
      For B-list MSPs
      And make sure we never
      forget our place again

    77. Croompenstein says:

      @R.Duncan – I hear Better Together have made a complaint about wee Duggies video, the bit where JoLa has a ‘vermine in ermine’ badge. You couldn’t make it up..

    78. Graeme Doig says:


      You did but you summed things up nicely 🙂

    79. ronnie anderson says:

      @caz_m. Over 55s Rail return to any where in Scotland £20,
      ah think you might jist aboot creep intae that age group.

      wee smilely thingies.

    80. caz-m says:

      Paula Rose

      That song brought a wee tear to my eye. You should put it to music, you might just have something there.

    81. caz-m says:

      Evening Ronnie

      A couple of years before a get that ticket. lol

    82. caz-m says:


      Was thinking of coming out Airdrie direction during the week, I could call in and see you if you are going to be about.

    83. Croompenstein says:

      Aw FFS the Rev’s gonnae be posted missing for 2 hours tonight, there’s a great Saturday nights viewing feast on ITV from 8:30 to 10:30(really!) about Our Queen! 😀

    84. cynicalHighlander says:

      I think some on here should do a little investigating as Grahamski was mild.

    85. Oneironaut says:

      @Neil Craig
      “I can even conceive of a UKIP government being elected at the next election”

      You mean in Scotland?

      I don’t think Scotland has anywhere near the requisite amount of bigotry, greed and general hatred towards anyone who isn’t “British”.
      Kind of hard for a group like UKIP to really take root here without those…

    86. Murray McCallum says:

      “If it’s a No vote on September 18, I think I might emigrate to Poland and become an English teacher.”

      I was thinking of Siberia. I don’t think they get the BBC there.

    87. scottish_skier says:

      @Neil Craig.

      You are just your line that big business makes money out of immigrants so all the problems can go hang.

      Nice attack for something I never said. I’m a centrist to modestly left social liberal. Certainly no rampant capitalist. Scottish independence will not benefit me in terms of my pay packet; if anything, a more Scandinavian model (which seems to be popular) means I’ll likely pay more tax. I’m fine with that as it’s who I pay tax to and what it’s spent on is my issue.

      That doesn’t stop me pointing out that while UKIP say they are pro-economic liberty (strong right economics), by wishing to restrict who a business can employ means they are not. They should just admit they are more authoritarian / dictatorial / ‘big state’ [interference] rather than economically liberal.

      As for this, I’ll bookmark it.

      I’ll admit such economic success, while technically feasible, even easy, is a long shot in Scotland’s political culture.


      That should have swayed a few Scots voters to your cause.

      Aye, best way to get people on side is to degenerate them.

      Anyway, have a good evening.

    88. bookie from hell says:

      Gord brown going federalism—panic stations

    89. heedtracker says:

      If all goes to bettertogetherBBC etc plan, No wins this year, Conservative win GE 2015, Labour defeat SNP in the Scottish region and whole ukok farce leaves the EU in 2017.

      Plus loads of Scottish Con/Dem/SLabour Lords and Ladies like Lady Lamont, Lord Rennie, Lord Davidson as big thank you from England.

    90. Findlay Farquaharson says:

      “I was thinking of Siberia. I don’t think they get the BBC there.”

      they do

    91. Croompenstein says:

      @heedtracker – You forgot Lord Darling (spew spew)

    92. Murray McCallum says:

      “I was thinking of Siberia. I don’t think they get the BBC there.”

      “they do”

      Even if you don’t have a telly? Christ, you have to hand it to them.

    93. heedtracker says:

      @ Croompenstein, yeah I did. How could anyone forget the Flipper, charisma bypass victim and Gordon Brown’s bitch. Plus there’s all the knighthoods they’ll dish out to BBC in Scotland twerps, arise Sir Brewer, Dame Jacky Bird, all the choobs on GMS.

    94. Findlay Farquaharson says:

      “Even if you don’t have a telly? Christ, you have to hand it to them.”

      world service on the tranny.

    95. Murray McCallum says:

      There goes the radio!

    96. cynicalHighlander says:

      Antartica should be a safe haven no polar bears only penguins and they are friendly creatures.

    97. Findlay Farquaharson says:

      “There goes the radio!”

      you may have to re-locate outside our solar system if you wanna avoid bbc, even then its only a matter of light speed and time.

    98. ronnie anderson says:

      @caz_m. no probs caz jist let me know what day,an I,ll meet


    99. caz-m says:

      Duggie the Dug, “The No Nightmare”

    100. caz-m says:


    101. caz-m says:

      Will give you a time through the week Ronnie.

      Have you saw the Duggie the Dug nightmare video after a NO vote.

    102. Mosstrooper says:

      Met a troglodyte this evening at friends life commemoration do.
      He, (on seeing my yes badge), Scotland is too poor etc.etc.

      Me, Debunk, correct inform.
      Him, well what about the electricity? the English will just buy it from the French.

      Me, (slightly more irate at this) Scotland’s higher grid costs etc.

      Him. Anyway, if it’s a yes vote and the SNP win we’ll all be communist.

      Me, why are they not communist now then.

      Him, short silence then, well they will be.

      Me, I Repeat the above question.

      Him, Well if it’s a yes I’m moving to England.

      Me (fed up by this time) Well don’t let the door hit you on the arse on the way oot, I show him my Tee shirt ,a present from daughter in OZ, which says ” Sorry, my fault, I forgot you were an Idiot”

      As he leaves another person approaches. Where can I get all the info. you were quoting?

      Me, Wings etc etc. Him, good I just feel a bit unsure but will think I’ll vote yes even though it is scary.

    103. ronnie anderson says:

      @caz_m. Duggie Dugs Nightmare, and it shall NOT come to pass

      ah feel it in ma Watter.

    104. caz-m says:

      Johann Lamont made a complaint about the phrase “vermin in ermin” in the Duggy video.

      She didn’t realise that John Prescott was the one who actually said that phrase first, a few years back.

      They are very twitchy, aren’t they.

      They don’t like it up em’, do they.

    105. ronnie anderson says:

      @caz_m, how are you traveling to Airdrie car/train

    106. caz-m says:

      A two hour show on ITV about Lizzie at the moment.

      I had to check the calendar there, I thought it was the 17th of September.

    107. caz-m says:

      Car Ronnie, I’ll find you with SatNav.

    108. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Bbc 4 more informative programme, shhhh dont tell P/Q am

      learning about Science/Energy an NO paying the TV licence,

      Well Educations free in Scotland is it no.

    109. caz-m says:

      That show about Lizzie on ITV, it’s a through back to Henry VIII’s time.

      I think after Independence, a royalty vote will follow shortly afterwards.

      Let Lizzie do her time, then let the people decide if they want to continue funding this very expensive joke.

    110. Robert Louis says:

      Well, well, I dictinctly recall that great champagne ‘socialist’ of the Labour party, John Prescott, regularly as an MP lambasting the house of Lords. It was he, former deputy Labour Prime minister who first used the phrase ‘Vermin in Ermine’ in one of his many attacks on the house of Lords.

      A few years later, however, aside from being photographed at his rather nice mansion playing croquet on the lawn, it was HE, Labour’s John Prescott, a so-called ‘socialist’ who jumped at the chance to himself become a Lord. Utter, utter hypocrite.

      As for this faux ‘outrage’ from the anti independence campaign and Labour, it is nonsense. As for it being ‘anti-women’, that too is nonsense, as rightly pointed out by Newsnet Scotland, the animator is actually a woman herself.

      The whole story in its cynical Labour ‘faux’ outrage detail, is on Newsnet Scotland;

      I’m getting tired of all this greetin faced behaviour by the anti independence campaign. It’s just pathetic.

    111. Paula Rose says:

      caz-m honey – yon Charlie displaying his usual tact and diplomacy in Scotland will win the day for the house of Windsor. (oops that’ll be me on a list)

    112. Tam Jardine says:

      Good article Adam – I too have taken a convoluted political journey. I grew up in a Dumfries where Hector Munro was a life MP and started off at school arguing eloquently and passionately on Hector ‘ s side… and was wrong about almost everything.

      With regards to Poland, I have felt the same way (about getting out if it’s a no) but it won’t come to that if we all step up. Get yer badge on, pit that A3 Yes in yer windae and take a trip down the boozer – the best place I find to engage folk.

      Speaking of which, try and make it to Wings Edinburgh on the 4th July at the Newsroom, 7.30-8pm.

      A bit too soon for the Waverley line opening but worth making the effort.

    113. Sinky says:

      My partner who works in a hospital is astonished to learn that the UK government is preventing trainee doctors from outside the EU, backed by UKIP, from getting work permits to continue working in Scotland despite paying thousands a year to study and gain our medical degrees.

      The No Scotland campaign is only sustained by the level of public ignorance so all the more reason for everyone who wants a Yes vote to get out on the doorsteps and do door to door survey work.

    114. ronnie anderson says:

      @Robert Louis, BT ( We are quite sure that Brian Cox had no idea that his voice would be appearing over something quite
      as unacceptable as this ).

      Well in my best Susan Dalgety voice. Let me tell you,s how
      visual arts work in Scotland, the story book is created,the
      vidio is them made,the vidio is viewed by the voiceover artist ie Brian Cox the voice is then dubbed onto the tape
      something to do with SINC.

      Speaking of Sinks any more tap dancing from BT their lible
      tae faw aff an go doon the plughole.

    115. Croompenstein says:

      Let’s make sure JoLa doesn’t have to worry about being vermin in ermine by showing them the contempt they truly deserve on the 18th.

      Hair by Lego, Make up by Blue Circle, no ermine..

    116. caz-m says:

      Paula Rose

      I don’t know your feelings on the Royals, but I think they have had their day.

      I just can’t take the Royal Family serious anymore. I find them pathetic looking now.

      In my opinion, in this day and age, people bowing to a woman with a glittery thing on her head is just plain stupid and so out dated.

      The money that is spent on them is disgusting.

      She has just spent £8 Million Pounds (of our money) on a new helicopter for her Grandson.

      And the same Grandson has just spent £4 million Pounds doing up his flat for him and his wife.

      That’s £12 Million Pounds in one weekend just on her Grandson. FFS

      And the bill just goes on and on…

    117. caz-m says:



      WOOF WOOF!

    118. Marcia says:

      Sunday Herald front page:

      A few of the articles in the paper;

      Pressure on Jim Murphy to take on leadership of Scottish Labour after indyref amid claims Lamont is only a caretaker leader.

      Scottish Tory party chairman wrecks cross-party deal on greater devolution in the event of a No vote.

      Cameron accused of hypocrisy over indyref as he allows MEPs to forge Euro alliance with Belgian party backing independence for Flanders.

      Revealed: the truth about who really paid for those controversial John Reid indyref ads.

      New indyref interview series – In The Hot Seat – starts tomorrow, with LibDem leader Willie Rennie and Dave Thompson of Christians for Independence.

    119. Marcia says:

      I will post the front page later when it appears in about an hour.

    120. Croompenstein says:

      OT – Why isn’t there extra time in the Germany-Ghana game 🙁

    121. Paula Rose says:

      They ran out of oranges and peaches were in short supply.

    122. Croompenstein says:

      @caz-m –

      And the same Grandson has just spent £4 million Pounds doing up his flat for him and his wife

      Nae Pot Noodles for them!

    123. Paula Rose says:

      Hey I’m getting good at this serious footsie stuff!

    124. Thepnr says:

      There was once upon a time a poor widow who had a son named Jack, and a cow named Milky-white. With all the benefit cuts all they had to live on was the milk the cow gave every morning. One morning Milky-white gave no milk and they didn’t know what to do.

      “What shall we do, what shall we do?” said the widow. “Cheer up, mother, I’ll go and get work somewhere,” said Jack.
      But there were no jobs for Jack and his mother said “we must sell Milky-white”. So he took the cow’s halter in his hand, and off he starts towards the market.

      He hadn’t gone far when he met a funny-looking old man with white hair and black eyebrows who said to him: “Good morning, Jack.”

      “Good morning,” said Jack, and wondered how he knew his name, Jack knew nothing of GCHQ nor MI5. “Well, Jack, and where are you off to?”. “I’m going to market to sell our cow as we’re skint.”

      “I don’t mind doing a swop with you, your cow for these beans, magic beans.” “What do the magic beans do” asked Jack. “Well if you plant them your problems will be solved, a devolution max tree will grow and everything will be fine”.

      “Right,” says Jack, and hands him over Milky-white’s halter and pockets the beans.

      “Back already, Jack?” said his mother; “I see you haven’t got Milky- white, so you’ve sold her. How much did you get for her?” “You’ll never guess, mother,” says Jack.

      “No, you don’t say.” “I told you, you couldn’t guess, what do you think of these beans; they’re magic, plant them over-night and…”

      “What!” says Jack’s mother, “have you been such a fool, such a dolt, such an idiot for a set of paltry beans.

      “Promises of jam tomorrow won’t feed us, you’re a fool boy, will you ever learn?”

    125. Croompenstein says:

      @Paula Rose – It’s all about oranges and peaches 🙂

    126. Croompenstein says:

      @Thepnr – Brilliant! Let us grow and climb the beanstalk, could be difficult but YES WE CAN..

    127. caz-m says:


      “Hair by Lego, Make up by Blue Circle”,

      Wee Johann will never look the same from now on.

      Brilliant, LOL.

    128. Paula Rose says:

      But boys – at the top of the beanstalk is a giant clumping fist!

    129. Col says:

      It`s good speaking to No voters who mention the hating Salmond thing, I usually stress the fact that i`m no member of the SNP also. Maybe ask if they think David Cameron will put Scotland first but the one which will stick in their minds i`m sure is asking this.
      ” What do Scottish Labour fear more? The SNP or Scottish aspirations?”
      The look on their faces is priceless!

    130. Paula Rose says:

      Fee fie fo fum I smell the blood of an…

    131. Paula Rose says:

      … ordinary mum.

    132. Paula Rose says:

      Watch out honeys – panto is about safe, panto will not serve our cause. If I have to give lectures on macro endogenous fairy tales I will be annoyed.

    133. Croompenstein says:

      Wonder if Rev Stu has dragged himself away from the Our Queen doc on ITV he has missed one of the classic World Cup games tonight 😀

    134. Democracy Reborn says:

      Congrats to Ghana drawing 2-2 with the mighty Germany in the World Cup.

      Unionists would no doubt say they’re ‘punching above their weight’…

    135. handclapping says:

      @Paula Rose
      LOL Give the girl a peach!

    136. Oneironaut says:

      @Paula Rose
      “panto will not serve our cause.”

      All together now… OH YES IT WILL! 😀

      (Sorry, couldn’t resist it!) 😉

    137. alistair says:

      Lots of Yes support out at Stirling Bridge to Bannockburn March today for 700th anniversary. Great rendition of I’m Coming Home by Ted Christopher at the start of the rally.
      Hope this link works –

    138. Paula Rose says:

      Oh no it won’t – trust me.

    139. Conan_the_Librarian says:

      @ Paula Rose

      I think you were born good at footsie stuff…

    140. Paula Rose says:

      Do they suck cherries at half times?

    141. TheItalianJob says:


      Thanks for that clip. Looked like a large turnout.

    142. caz-m says:

      Paula 9.51pm

      I just watched your Johnny Rotten video “God Save the Queen”.

      I think you were a “Punkette” when you were younger. That’s a couple of times you have played punk music. GRRRRRR!!!!
      Were you a bit of a rebel?

      Were you an S.Pistols fan? Notice I didn’t say their full name, I wasn’t allowed to say S**, so I just called them the S.Pistols. lol.

    143. Peter says:

      Is Mike Dailly the same Mike Dailly who enjoys intimite relations with farm animals? Or am I thinking of a different Mike Dailly, and not the one who risks foot and mouth disease of the gonads?

    144. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      First of all Adam – an excellent piece of typing!

      And (going slightly O/T) seeing as you’re a graduate of “Bell Street”, and nodding in the direction of Paula Rose’s Sex Pistols’ YouTube offering, did you know that the only Scottish gig the original Sex Pistols had was the Bell Street Students’ Union in October ’76?

      For a wee history lesson about Dundee Institute/College of Technology/University of Abertay Students’ Union, see this link:-

      BTW: I posted there under my DJ name – “Brian Wilson”.

      Secondly, somebody up above posted about the demise of the Lib-Dems.
      There was a guy who would have made their all-time greatest leader if he hadn’t been killed in a car crash. I’m typing about David Penhaligon. That man could orate for the world in the Universe’s oration championships. A sad loss to the British political scene.

      With the number of new contributors to Wings over the past few days, I think we’ve floated past the watershed. Unless YES Scotland manages to grasp defeat from the jaws of victory over the next three months, we, as a nation, should be on our way.

    145. caz-m says:


      Please tell me the Rev is not a Royalist, please, pretty please.

    146. alistair says:

      Yes, was a good turnout for the rally. Shame there isn’t going to be a big Yes march before Sept. Maybe we could have a Wings march instead.

    147. Paula Rose says:

      Darlings – some of us remember a band called The Spots xx

    148. Croompenstein says:

      @alistair – That is brilliant. so sorry I couldn’t be there but thanks for posting the link.

    149. caz-m says:

      “Is Mike Dailly the same Mike Dailly who enjoys intimite relations with farm animals? Or am I thinking of a different Mike Dailly, and not the one who risks foot and mouth disease of the gonads?”

      What are you trying to tell us Peter, out with it. Do you know something we should know about.

      FFS, LOL

    150. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      I have no idea where Neil Craig gets the “six billion ” from and such childish hyperbole does nothing to assist his silly argument.
      We require immigrants to come,to work, to pay taxes and to support our provision of social services by doing so (which they have every right in that circumstance to share).

      The trick, of course, with some unscrupulous elements in politics and the media is to confuse legal immigrants and asylum seekers with illegal immigrants and demonise them all and seek electoral progress by doing so.

      No person has suggested unlimited immigration (and I’m sure the Sioux and the Apaches and the Tasmanians and the Australian Aborigines and all the others we displaced all across the world would have had huge objection to such a thing).

      David Coburn is a buffoon but our media kept that well under wraps until he had fulfilled his purpose of preventing the SNP (or the Greens)getting that spare seat in the European election

    151. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Croompenstein 9.40 When did JoLo upgrade her makeup tae
      Blue Circle, ah hud her doon as a Dulux wummin ( dull Sheen )

    152. Marcia says:

      Brian Doonthetoon

      I remember when it was a bowling alley. I also remember in the early 195O’s before it became a bowling alley it was home to functions such as Christmas parties for the kids of jute workers as I remember going to a couple.

    153. Sinky says:

      Shock Horror……….. Sky News paper review reveals that Scotland on Sunday front page reveals that some republicans want to use Scottish constitution to get rid of the Queen!

    154. caz-m says:

      Scotland on Sunday running with the headline that we are plotting to dump the Queen.

      If only.

    155. Croompenstein says:

      @caz-m – Please tell me the Rev is not a Royalist, please, pretty please

      Ha Ha Caz, no way I’m going to speak for the Rev, just a wee rise pointing out that ITV have dedicated 2 f*ckin hours of Saturday night TV to a jingoistic F*ck up of a documentary, I am pretty certain Stu would have been watching the best game of football we have seen for a wee while.. (weren’t you Stu?)

    156. Paula Rose says:

      Love your Queen!

    157. Marcia says:


      Re Sos – Republicans wanting a republic shock.

    158. TheItalianJob says:


      Yes saw that.


      Ah. Do you no like our Lizze by any chance.

    159. caz-m says:


      I wonder how many coats of Dulux wee Johann puts on before she leaves the hoose.

    160. Paula Rose says:

      In Scotland the people are sovereign, if we choose to retain the present wearer of the crown so be it – it is our choice.

    161. No no no...yes says:

      Johann uses b and q paint, she gets 20% discount!

    162. caz-m says:


      Don’t you think the Royals have had their day.

    163. caz-m says:


      How many Grandsons get a new helicopter for their birthday.

    164. ronnie anderson says:

      @ caz_m weil she is a pithy wummin,wie a Crater fur a mooth
      an you know whit craters are like tae fullin.
      Deepin wide deepin wide theres a chasim deepin wide.

    165. John devine says:

      If you love the Royal Family you should pay into a fund for their upkeep..not from taxes free the royals…

    166. Paula Rose says:

      Salmond will de bate Darling? How does that work?

    167. CameronB Brodie says:

      Paula Rose

      This. 🙂

    168. Croompenstein says:

      @Marcia – nice one, the FM will wipe the floor with Flipper but it may be a gamble if he changes his stance on debating Cameron..

      @ronnie – mibbee PolyFilla needed for Jola’s mooth, needs mair than strawberry jam for her lips…

    169. Paula Rose says:

      Will he master it?

    170. Findlay Farquaharson says:

      stop being disrespectful to her majesty, she brings in 20 mil a year ffs.

    171. ronnie anderson says:

      Cmon noo lads n lasses nae riseing to the Sky pish,

      anither distraction technique.

      plenty to debate after the 19th Sept, & no doupt the Queen
      & Royalty will feature. For now we can forego any discussions
      achestrated by the MSM, stay focused.

    172. John devine says:

      Findlay Farquaharson says:
      21 June, 2014 at 11:04 pm
      stop being disrespectful to her majesty, she brings in 20 mil a year ffs.

      Yes..that’s true But no much left after the helicopter and the hoose paint

    173. Kirsty says:

      I can’t wait to get rid of an inequitable, hereditary, unelected, unrepresentive head of state. I can’t believe that the only qualification we ask of our head of state is that they didn’t end up as a wet patch in the bed! If being born is all it takes then, surely, we should all have an opportunity to apply for the job as we’re all qualified!

      I hope Scotland becomes a real meritocracy where whoever is best for a particular job gets it rather than family connections, school or wealth being the qualification.

    174. Schrodinger's Cat says:


      peter is an agent provocateur

    175. Neil Craig says:

      It was you who made the claim that you needed more immigration to make more profits for your business. I merely took you at your word and pointed out that this is a common, indeed appropriate way for business owners to feel. Just that it is up to the rest of society to note the problems.

      In being critical of the Ludditry of Scottish political culture is was not degenerating (or even denigrating) the Scots people, merely the ruling class. If you actually look at polling on the issues the Scottish people are pretty sensible – it is just the entrenched, corrupt, totalitarian and lunatic ruling class and their whores in the BBC & other media who are the problem.

      For example, a recent Herald (no friend of UKIP’s) found that 70% of the Scottish people agree with our policy in immigration.

      (I trust this also shows the writer who thought UKIP making to much of an issue of this – it is obviously our opponents pushing for unlimited immigration who are)

      On that point Skier, since you called me previously on not having answered a question (where my answer was obvious) how about you answering mine about what, precise, immigration level you want?

      DMH you ought to know, if you are going to pontificate on the subject, that there are 6 billion people in the world much poorer than us, for whom coming here and getting our welfare & Health system would be an improvement.

      You are wrong to say that nobody supports unlimited immigration – that, & the honesty is to their credit, is precisely what the greens do. Some other, though obviously wholly dishonest, parties and individuals attack UKIP for being “racist” for wanting a limit, while at the same time claiming they want a limit, while at the same time refusing to say what it is. Such parties are obviously lying through at least 2 of their 3 faces.

      You are certainly right that our media kept almost all mention of UKIP “under wraps” during the recent election (& are subverting the referendum by censoring any actual debate). This censorship is, of course corrupt and totalitarian and proves the BBC to be a monolithic totalitarian propagandist. Obviously every single one of our 129 MSPs who has any respect for freedom, democracy or decency has publicly denounced this “keeping under wraps”. That would be none of these Fascists – which brings me back to my “degenerating” of our corrupt ruling class.

      And yes it would be, as I said, easy to have a successful economy if we had a government not run by the parasites in Holyrood and Westminster.

    176. Morag Graham Kerr says:

      Funny thing. I was involved in a big shindig at Earls Court for her Maj’s 40th anniversary. “Forty Glorious Years.” I was in the choir. I remember being quite chuffed at the start and deciding to save my security pass and the rehearsal schedule and so on.

      Well it was all a bit of a shambles, and it went on twice as long as it was supposed to, and I hope the audience had been to the loo before it started because there was no interval. I thought I could smell dinner burning during the latter stages (not that the performers were going to get more than a sniff of that).

      The programme was shockingly insulting to Scotland, with the only piece representing our country being us singing “Amazing Grace” to a bagpipe accompaniment. It lasted about two minutes. The “London Sequence” with someone called Michael Ball who seemed to need about ten hours rehearsal (oh and Cliff Richard too) went on ten times as long. Is “Amazing Grace” actually a Scottish song?

      Some time in the middle of that lot I realised it was all an absolute farce and what the hell was it all about and whaddaya know I was a republican without actually going through the stages of thinking about it.

      Oddly enough my mother, who had sung solo for the Queen Mother when she was actually Queen, and who insisted on watching the Royal wedding while I went out leafleting for the 2011 election, also thought the entire Royal family was a bunch of scroungers. But she liked looking at the wedding dress.

    177. Thepnr says:

      Grim Fairy tales.

      1. Scotland is better off in the Union.
      2. Pooling and sharing resources.
      3. We’re better together.
      4. Their will be No currency Union
      5. Scotland will be out of the EU
      6. NATO will not accept Scotland
      7. Scottish people are “too wee too poor and too stupid”

      Yer aving a larf!

    178. Croompenstein says:

      @Morag – please go to sunset for scaremongers thread and mete out your rebuttal as only you can.. 🙂

    179. Tam Jardine says:

      O/T After mentiooning to Adam way up there about getting your Yes up in the windae I decided to look at the Yes online shop.

      Flabbergasted to find the A3 Yes packs STILL out of stock of some colours and impossible to buy a those in stock.

      I have had a look on 3 or 4 occasions, each time out of stock. Now it is not beyond my ken to print a couple out at work but dammit Yes Scotland aaarrggh!

      I can only hope they are struggling under the weight of demand. For anyone interested the SNP’S Yes area of their online store has loads of gear that doesn’t feature on the Yes Scotland site including a load of personalised gear which looks magic.

      Check it out if you want to buy some stuff and contribute at the same time.

      I know we are not all SNP but it will all be going on the campaign. Badges, car stickers and the window A3’s are hugely important to the visibility of the movement.

      In the last month I would ask every one of us to be as visible a Yes as circumstances permit. Every time I look up and see those 3 letters it gives me a boost.

    180. TheItalianJob says:


      My wee comment at you was tounge in cheek. I’m no big fan of the Royals.

    181. Muscleguy says:

      BTW I was watching the All Blacks playing England in Hamilton New Zealand this morning. Yes, there are other codes of football being played elsewhere at the moment. There was a shot of some English supporters in the crowd and there was a wee girl wrapped in a union flag, a father in an England shirt and another girl on the other side waving a union flag as well. Though she looked unsure (not surprising considering the scoreline). But if you ever want evidence of how some English people confuse Britain with England there you have it.

      And finally, bad luck Wales. As a Scottish Kiwi I was gutted for you. Hopefully the ABs can exact revenge.

    182. MochaChoca says:

      Hi folks, I see Dave Grohl of Nirvana and Foo Fighters has been snapped sporting a #VOTE YES sign.

      Does anyone know if there is a story backing this up? As celebrity endorsements go this would be a top trump.

    183. caz-m says:

      “plenty to debate after the 19th Sept, & no doupt the Queen
      & Royalty will feature”.

      You’re probably right Ronnie.

      But when I heard today that Lizzie bought Prince William
      an £8Million pound helicopter, well that just tipped it for me.

      No more.

      Enough is enough as they say doon your Airdrie way.

    184. caz-m says:

      “My wee comment at you was tounge in cheek. I’m no big fan of the Royals”

      Big Hugs!

    185. Les Wilson says:

      Late on a Saturday night, a Good time to re post this for those who have not seen. Lump in the throat time.

    186. Grouse Beater says:

      Morag said: Funny thing.

      Not only funny, but also a gem.

      Most enjoyable post I’ve read for a while.

    187. ronnie anderson says:

      Awe fur FFS ah think ave goat the Ebola virus wie that clown

      Neil Craig ur you,s gonna no feed the troll, ma ein ur


    188. Tam Jardine says:


      I was visiting the National Museum on Chambers Street last week and stumbled upon the enormous tree- trunk of a totem pole in one of the rooms. Viewed from the balcony this imposing and fantastic object from the distant past must have taken a team of braves ages to shift never mind carve and decorate. It’s 37′ tall!

      It struck me after I had tried to describe to my wee girl it’s purpose that one day that bleedin carriage, all £3 or £4 million quids worth will end up in a museum.

      Many years from now parents will struggle to describe what the hell the carriage and the monarchy’s function was all those years ago to their kids. I struggle with that question now!

    189. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Col at 10.02

      The best response to the clowns who profess NO because they don’t like Alex Salmond is to say “Have you ever heard Alex Salmond say a bad word about anyone?”

      This should be a constant theme

    190. Croompenstein says:

      @Dave – when you ask them that question they stutter and stammer and go eeehhhh… ask them then if Flipper says bad things about opponents and it’s easy for us..

      I ask them why they want to be part of a union who lies and tries to scare its citizens in to remaining within said union and they have the same blank expression..

    191. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Tam Jardine at 11.26

      I have lots of A3 YES posters (Blue, Red, Green Yesses on a white background. 20p each or 50p laminated (plus p&p)

    192. CameronB Brodie says:

      Cliff Richard? Isn’t he a foreigner? Bloody upstart’s only fit for a ‘black battalion’.

      No respect here on WOS. The Queen, Sir Cliff. Who else can we disrespect tonight?

    193. Ronnie says:

      @ Tam Jardine

      Thanks for the SNP shop address. I’m not SNP either, but I’ve not been at all happy with the YES shop.

      Order placed.

      Distribution planned.

    194. Tam Jardine says:

      Dave McEwan Hill

      Thanks – will let you know if I get nowhere. I will contact Yes and find out what the hell is going on with supply.

      This is where I find the Yes camp frustrating – advertising like this should be getting punted FOC at every stand and event. Anyone who gives a 7 or above on the doorstep should be offered one. Same with badges. I will get the A3’s but some people might just no bother.

      You’re no coming to Wings Edinburgh by any chance?

    195. Croompenstein says: mate has just informed me that Clapton has come out against WoS.. F*ck that’s me a naw noo Eric widnae lie would he?? oh wait a meenut he stole wee Geordie Harrison’s wife and he wiz meant to be his mate!!

      Aye go F*ck yersel Eric, what a let down (still love Layla though)

    196. CameronB Brodie says:

      Dave McEwan Hill
      Are you in Edinburgh and/or have you stuck you e-mail anywhere? I’ve got a prominent window that could do with a few. I’ll also see if any of my neighbours will take any.

    197. Tam Jardine says:

      @ Ronnie

      I’m not SNP either, but I’ve not been at all happy with the YES shop.

      SNP to the fillings in my teeth mate! I just meant plenty of us aren’t. Happy shopping

    198. TJenny says:

      Croompenstein – Aye, I saw on twitter that he was at a ? Hydro and he asked that any followers of WOS please leave – allegedly. If, true, no doubt it’ll be all over the BBC news tomorrow. They’ll be cross if it happened too late for their Sunday editions.

    199. CameronB Brodie says:

      A proficient copy-artist. White middle-class boy grows up to make a fortune out of a genera that expressed a cultural experience of existence under subjugation. Not surprised he’s against. Not really a soul brother, in skin or spirit. His music is wooden, in my opinion. If I had one he could have my beer can. 😉

    200. ronnie anderson says:

      Ah see Diddy Dave Camerons still punching above his weight

      in the EU I,ll send him a paper bag tae practice on, he kin

      add the watter himself ,the cost of postage is to dear tae

      send the watter.

    201. caz-m says:

      Les Wilson
      Here’s one back,

      “Going Home”, by Mark Knopfler and The Royal Scots Dragoon Gaurd

    202. Ian Brotherhood says:

      All this talk of stickers/badges etc…

      How about ‘Sticky Monday’ (or something similar) – a specific date which we hype-up to the hilt. During that 24 hours, everyone in possession of Yes stickers/badges/posters etc gets the things out where they’re supposed to be i.e. IN PLAIN VIEW!

      (Best time to do the stickers is during the night – if you have a dog, that’s good reason to be out and about at three in the morning: ‘No problem officer. Shane is highly-strung, so I have to take him out at night-time, when there’s not much traffic…’)

      If we organise it properly, and decide on a suitable night (weather permitting), we could witness nocturnal perambulation at unprecedented levels. And a lot of delighted (albeit slightly confused) dogs.

    203. Les Wilson says:

      caz-m says

      Yea, that is good too, I just prefer the big occasion and how the crowds appreciated the pipers. Was in Holland I think.
      Huge crowd.

    204. Croompenstein says:

      @Cameron – Great guitarist but yeh he rides the coat tails of true greats Jack Bruce, Ginger Baker,George Harrison, JJ Cale and Bob Marley.

      F*ck him he knows nothing of Scotland or her people

    205. Morag Graham Kerr says:

      Remember all that fuss about the saltire sticker on Murray’s window? And I wanted to know the size of the things?

      I’ve since seen several around that part of Edinburgh. However on Thursday I was sneaking round the village here putting up posters for Monday’s meeting (while everyone was watching the footie), and looked more closely at the lamp standards as a result. The one right outside the church, only a few hundred yards from my house, has one with “Free Scotland” on it, stuck quite high up.

      I have no idea who put it there or how it got there. It’s well above my reach. But whoda thunkit?

    206. Tam Jardine says:


      May be a false alarm about Clapton – I think it is just a joke on twitter mate.

    207. Croompenstein says:

      @Morag – sneaking round the village here putting up posters

      Could you be any more our hero? 😀

      Love you to bits.. 🙂

    208. Croompenstein says:

      @Tam – He still shagged wee George Harrisons wife 🙂

    209. haud on the noo says:

      Way back In early 70s my mate and i spent the early hours PRE election climbing lampposts and whatever tearing down Tory posters and replacing with SNP. The Tories were too comfy at sleep at 4am.

      Stirling took a long time to see any light.

    210. Tam Jardine says:


      Aye, maybe so- nothin to do wi me:)

    211. CameronB Brodie says:

      He can still have my beer can and that has nothing to do with his opinions or his morals. He’s just bitter he wasn’t Jimi Hendriz. 🙂

    212. Gray says:

      @ Heedtracker

      Can you please clarify, is Lord Davidson Ian or Ruth?

    213. whiplash says:

      I see over at the hootsman they are saying a Yes vote will lead to cheaper houses. Not quite how they phrase it though.

    214. caz-m says:

      Tam Jardine

      The Record website has nothing about YES and Clapton.

      It does say he walked of stage.

    215. Punky Par says:

      Interesting article but Adam, but as Selkirk born & bred (and away forever 25 years) I can say that the Riding of the Marches itself was about protecting the towns land from neighbouring landowners (not English) encroaching on boundaries and stealing land. It was intertwined with the commemoration of the Battle of Flodden (1513) when 80 of the towns men went off to fight for Scotland and only one, Fletcher, returned with a captured English banner. It is a fine ceremony with great traditions, a greta spectacle with over 400 horsemen, (and women) the largest mounted cavalcade in Europe.
      I would say that there is a certain schizophrenia about the Borderers regarding the Union…I wish they were more radical (pro Indy) but they just ain’t, too many years beholden to Mill owners and the local aristocracy …..we need a revival of that true Border Reiver spirit….Yours in YES

    216. Morag says:

      I fear house prices will rise at least around Edinburgh. There will be considerable demand for property when the city is an international capital.

      This isn’t necessarily a good thing but it will happen.

    217. Thepnr says:

      See as the tensions builds and the rhetoric gets louder. We must respond in kind. No, I’m not talking of wasting our time making daft posts online. Though we keep doing that.

      Now in the final stages, online is very important for the simple reason it offers and alternative viewpoint. The real battle though is up close.

      Face-to-face let’s take the positive massage to people, every opportunity. Full page adverts can only take you so far, engaging and giving the facts is what will do the business.

      That’s why we’ll win

    218. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Cameron B Brodie at 12.14

      01369 700132 (Home) or 01369 703228 (Cowal YES Shop Dunoon)

    219. Ian Brotherhood says:

      re Clapton:

      IMHO, the guy is an overrated and provenly racist bawbag, unfit to tie John Martyn’s shoelaces.

      Fuckim – his opinion on our lives is totally devoid of relevance or value.

    220. Croompenstein says:

      @Ian – and he shagged George Harrisons wife the pure c*nt..

      Couldn’t string George’s guitar the f*cker

    221. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Tam Jardine at 12.11

      Yes. We are giving car stickers to all yessers we identify on our canvas.
      We are getting better than 8 YES to every 5 No so far.

      A3 posters 01369 700132 (Home) or 01369 703228 (Cowal YES Shop Dunoon)

    222. HandandShrimp says:

      I would be very surprised if Clapton knew who Wings are, sounds like Twitter nonsense to me. That said, his politics are not his strongest selling point. I’ve always enjoyed his music though.

      He does seem to have pissed the fans off at the Hydro, although again it is the Record so who knows what actually happened.

    223. CameronB Brodie says:

      Dave McEwan Hill
      Thanks, I nip around my neighbours before getting in touch. See how that goes, then I have another few addresses in mind. 😉

    224. jon esquierdo says:

      A lot of people like to post their comments and voice their opinions but how do you educate the uneducated?

    225. jon esquierdo says:

      Education, Education, Education

    226. Onwards says:

      @Tam Jardine

      Just looking at the YES merchandise there, and loving the ones with the exclamation mark.


      During the final weeks it would be nice to see the extra excitement of YES! stickers and posters appearing all over the place.

      Beats the dour ‘No thanks’ any day of the week.

      There is a precendent here also.

      The Obama ‘Forward’ slogan changing to Forwards! for the final 2 weeks of his campaign, to give a bit of added oomph.

    227. K1 says:

      Croompenstein @1.16am you are very funny, genuinely laugh out loud funny, ta for that 🙂

    228. Thepnr says:

      @jon esquierdo

      but how do you educate the uneducated?

      Well the BBc will educate them. Oh wait it will be the newspapers then. Oh wait that won’t work either.

      So two choices, give them an Aye right leaflet/card and let let find for themselves the alternative viewpoint. Failing that, engage with them up close. The latter is preferable.

    229. Onwards says:

      Correct link for previous post..

    230. Croompenstein says:

      @jon – the education is here it’s up to us to go out and use it, It’s now immeasurable how many don’t knows i’ve turned due mainly to WoS, the die hard loyalists and pure Brits are lost to us but the majority are there for us to engage and WoS provides us with the ammo – let’s take them out at the knees !!

    231. Bob Sinclair says:

      Im sure you were kidding when you asked whether Amazing Grace was a Scottish song but, on the off chance that there are some out there who don’t know here’s a wee wikipedia cut and paste. Given this info, after a YES Vote, Darling et al should maybe consider starting each day with a quick few choruses. I am not a religious person but do think this hymn actually has something important to say.

      “Amazing Grace” is a Christian hymn with words written by the English poet and clergyman John Newton (1725–1807), published in 1779. With the message that forgiveness and redemption are possible regardless of sins committed and that the soul can be delivered from despair through the mercy of God, “Amazing Grace” is one of the most recognizable songs in the English-speaking world.

      Newton wrote the words from personal experience. He grew up without any particular religious conviction, but his life’s path was formed by a variety of twists and coincidences that were often put into motion by his recalcitrant insubordination. He waspressed (forced into service involuntarily) into the Royal Navy, and after leaving the service became involved in the Atlantic slave trade. In 1748, a violent storm battered his vessel so severely that he called out to God for mercy, a moment that marked his spiritual conversion. However, he continued his slave trading career until 1754 or 1755, when he ended his seafaring altogether and began studyingChristian theology.

      Ordained in the Church of England in 1764, Newton became curate of Olney, Buckinghamshire, where he began to write hymns with poet William Cowper. “Amazing Grace” was written to illustrate a sermon on New Year’s Day of 1773. It is unknown if there was any music accompanying the verses; it may have simply been chanted by the congregation. It debuted in print in 1779 in Newton and Cowper’s Olney Hymns but settled into relative obscurity in England. In the United States however, “Amazing Grace” was used extensively during the Second Great Awakening in the early 19th century. It has been associated with more than 20 melodies, but in 1835 it was joined to a tune named “New Britain” to which it is most frequently sung today.

      Author Gilbert Chase writes that “Amazing Grace” is “without a doubt the most famous of all the folk hymns,”[1] and Jonathan Aitken, a Newton biographer, estimates that it is performed about 10 million times annually.[2]It has had particular influence in folk music, and has become an emblematic African American spiritual. Its universal message has been a significant factor in its crossover into secular music. “Amazing Grace” saw a resurgence in popularity in the U.S. during the 1960s and has been recorded thousands of times during and since the 20th century, occasionally appearing on popular music charts.

    232. Quinie frae Angus says:

      Re Eric Clapton

      I have it on good authority from some-one who was there tonight that he didn’t actually storm off. It appeared (to this friend, at least) that he hadn’t realised there was a time limit on how long a band could play for. He registered mild dissatisfaction with this and walked off (don’t know how “stormily”) when time was up.

      Don’t know yet how the papers are spinning it, but as I wasn’t there I have only this to go on as to what actually happened.

      Nobody who was there that I know has mentioned his alleged “Wings” comment but I am sure this must just be a Twitter spoof. Hard to tell these days fact from fiction.

      One of the meany reasons I support Wings, of course. (Sorting fact from fiction).

    233. Thepnr says:

      The little lies keep getting bigger. Who cares anymore?

    234. Rock says:


      “Having said all this, I remain a sceptic by nature, and until I’ve marked my X on the ballot paper, I’ll never say my position is absolute”

      You are still not 100% convinced???

      “I come from a relatively affluent middle-class family”

      “Ironically, a Scottish Labour with traditional working-class values would probably be more appealing to me than either of those.”

      Out of curiosity, why would a traditional working class Labour party appeal to someone from an affluent middle-class family?

    235. Grouse Beater says:

      Jon Esquierdo asks: how do you educate the uneducated?

      Depends what you mean by ‘uneducated.’

      Unless there is learning difficulties most individuals are keen to acquire learning of one sort or another.

      In general terms you begin by establishing an environment that motivates the individual to acquire learning, either by encouraging curiousity, by direct experimentation, by problem solving, and by book learning.

      Scotland gave birth to a highly successful free school run by a very interesting domini, A.S. Neill. The school was called Summerhill. (It has a near copy today in Kilquanity House School.) ‘Difficult,’ disruptive, unruly kids were allowed to choose to attend classes or play all day. This offer was revolutionary, and seen by outsiders as anarchy.

      In time they got bored with playing and began to prefer learning things. None were punished as a method of control. There was no corporal punishment, a policy wholly at odds with state schools.

      Duly motivated a good many eventually sat state school-type exams and went on to university courses and became worthwhile citizens. The school was famous – or infamous depending on your attitude – held regular democratic meetings where pupils discussed behaviour and placed sanction on each other. Peer pressure tended to create good behaviour and consideration for others.

      Inspected by the state education system, Summerhill passed each and every visit in spite of attempts to discredit its teaching philosophy.

      In a nutshell – it was the anti-state school school.

      (PS: Thinking about what I’ve written in answer to Jon’s enquiry makes me see parallels with Scotland now and our debate to regain dignity in self-determination. A.S Neill would have approved.)

    236. CameronB Brodie says:

      How’s this for ‘swivel eyed’? 🙂

      The move for separation from the UK is being led by right-wing forces espousing nationalism, whether or not they attempt to dress this up in fake left language. The aim is to transform Scotland into a low tax, cheap labour platform for the benefit of the banks and transnational corporations.

      The victim of this will be workers on both sides of the border, who will see a deepening of the ongoing offensive against jobs, wages and conditions that has been waged by all the major parties in both Westminster and Holyrood.

      Scotland is not an oppressed nation, but part of an imperialist state. Its ruling elite has committed countless crimes and shared in the brutal exploitation of millions the world over. Waving the Saltire in people’s faces is meant to conceal the basic fact that workers in Scotland are not oppressed because of their nationality, but because of their class position within capitalist society. This is just as reactionary as the waving of the Union Flag by their opponents……

      The only progressive response to the crisis of the nation-state system is to bring an end to all national divisions by adopting the perspective of socialist internationalism.

      Squeal! Squeal!…..Squeal! Squeal! Squeal!

      What’s British Labour’s position re. Iraq?

    237. CameronB Brodie says:

      “it is not some isolated constitutional reform that we are proposing with a Freedom of Information Act. It is a change that is absolutely fundamental to how we see politics developing in this country over the next few years…information is power and any government’s attitude about sharing information with the people actually says a great deal about how it views power itself and how it views the relationship between itself and the people who elected it”

      “People often say to me today: everyone says this before they get into power, then, after they get into power you start to read the words of the government on the screen and they don’t seem so silly after all.” – Tony Blair at the Campaign for Freedom of Information’s 1996 Awards.

    238. CameronB Brodie says:

      I missed this at the time. Succulent lamb on stilts?

      The Faustian pacts that contrived a world war a century ago resonate today across the Middle East, and Asia: from Syria to Japan. Then, as now, cover-up was the principal weapon. In 1917, Prime Minister David Lloyd George declared: “If people knew the truth, the war would be stopped tomorrow. But of course they don’t know and can’t know.”

    239. CameronB Brodie says:

      Something else, though I’ve not read it all yet myself. Surely if they ae trying to harmonise the EU with the USA, the same will have to be done with China? Standards set ny China? Now there’s a reason for a written constitution, if ever I saw one.

      Letting the international economy drift without renewed leadership is no longer an option… It is time for the United States and the European Union to exert leaders hip by s howing a new way forward. The Atlantic Council

    240. macart763m says:

      Seems the opposition don’t like Scotties. Or is it that this wee dug gave them a nip that was too close to home?

      Such an overt and contrived outbreak of faux outrage simply doesn’t cover the fact they had no answer to the points contained in an animation.

    241. john king says:

      Handclapping says
      “@Paula Rose
      LOL Give the girl a peach!”

      Dont get out much do you Handclapping? 🙂
      what about going to the Edinburgh do?

    242. john king says:

      “stop being disrespectful to her majesty, she brings in 20 mil a year ffs.”

      that wee ice cream concession in Burntisland she has must dae a fair turnower! :0

    243. john king says:

      Morag says
      Is Amazing Grace actually a Scottish song?


    244. Brian Mchugh says:

      Reading that article, Adam’s understanding of politics seems really confused. If he sits somewhere between the SNP and the Greens, then he is slightly left of centre and very slightly leaning towards libertarian. The day to day policies of the SNP and Greens are almost insignificant. I find it incomprehensible that he wouldn’t opt for one or the other.

      In saying that, I have been to a couple of RIC events and have come across this ‘we are the real Labour, the real Left’ attitude and they make it clear (at every opportunity possible, like its some kind of obsession), that they are against the SNP, but I have yet to hear a coherent argument of why (other than ‘mah grandaddy voted fur Layburr’), when you consider that the SNP (or Green) policies probably are the closest match to those peoples views.

      If Adam thinks you cannot vote for a party because you dont agree with 100% of their policies, then It would be impossible for me to ever vote. You look for the closest match and then apply pragmatism. Adam admits he sits between the SNP and the Greens… so what’s the problem? Choose the one that you feel fits best. Surely not difficult? …unless of course there is a ‘football supporters allegiance’ attitude to politics going on, that we often see from some on the left against the SNP.

      I would suggest to Adam that he takes the test…

      I would love to hear Adam’s result?

      Ps. I sat the test and got the SNP. Not suprising to me, since I am a member… but it does show that the test is rather accurate on an issue by issue basis.

    245. Brian Mchugh says:

      Sorry, that should have said; “The differences in the day to day policies between the SNP and the Greens”

    246. caz-m says:

      Hurray! Scotland and Kilmarnock gets a mention on the main BBC News bulletin this morning.

      “Man tries to steal the Queen’s baton in Kilmarnock”.

      Then it was back to the more important English news.

      Well it’s a start, is it not? At least they recognise we are still up here.

    247. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      @ John king

      The original tune was

    248. CameronB Brodie says:

      Brian Mchugh
      Just a wee bit more Libertarian than Gandhi. That’s nice. 🙂

    249. Brian Mchugh says:

      CameronB ‘Gandhi’ Brodie, I could have told you that just by your posts. 😉

    250. Robert Peffers says:

      @caz-m says: Johann, “BEWARE OF THE DOG”

      WOOF WOOF!

      The sign on the gate should read, “Ignore the dug – it’s the owener whit bites”.

    251. Dorothy Devine says:

      OT Anyone seen the article about Judy Murray ” Slamming” the First Minister for waving the saltire at Wimbledon?
      That’s mother and son used to decry the elected First minister of Scotland in that odious paper.

      I look forward to all those anti Andy comments when Wimbledon is on . You know the BBBC will be interviewing some ” fans” to ask who they’re supporting and you can bet your bottom dollar there will be the ” Not Murray , that torn faced Scotsman who said anyone but England ” brigade.

      Perhaps the comments from the Murrays were tepid but they should have just zipped it ,knowing not to mention having bitter experience of how it would be presented in the media.

      Any Scot going to Wimbledon , please take LARGE Saltires with you and wave them at all times , no matter who is playing.

    252. caz-m says:

      Also noticing the rise in oil prices due to the Iraq crisis.

      It’s another example of more money pouring into the UK treasury and Scotland getting no benefit what so ever.

      If rUK got drawn into a war in Iraq again, then an Independent Scotland would not be involved in it, but would reap the benefits of high oil prices.

      rUK would be spending £Millions on wars with their masters, America, while an Independent Scotland would be getting on with the business of building more homes, schools, hospitals, roads and the many other projects that will make Scotland one of the most prosperous countries in Europe.

    253. CameronB Brodie says:

      Brian Mchugh
      I do like a curry. 🙂

    254. Tam Jardine says:

      Dave McEwan Hill

      Yes. We are giving car stickers to all yessers we identify on our canvas.We are getting better than 8 YES to every 5 No so far.

      Great work Dave – thanks. I will give you a bell on the A3’s.

    255. Ken500 says:

      Andy Murray and his mum are constantly misquoted

      Do not believe what you read in the MSM. It is lies.

      Stop attacking one of Scotland’s best sporting hero’s ever. Keep the eye on the ball.

      The Westminster Politicans and MSM consisted of habitual male, White, middle class and wealthy, jealous greedy liars.

    256. Ken500 says:

      There are reports they did not allow Saltires at the Olympics. Wimbledon?

    257. Ken500 says:

      Wimbledon must allow flags Swiss, Croat, Argentina etc.

      The British do not boo Andy Murray. It is the continentals, Spanish, French etc who are very vocal in supporting their competitors.

    258. Robert Peffers says:

      @caz-m says: “Don’t you think the Royals have had their day”?

      I don’t mind them having their day. It having EVERY bloody day that gets right up my nose.

    259. Ken500 says:

      Judy Murray has refused invitations to London to follow through in Scotland. Her tennis post includes coaching the British/players team and has done for many years. That’s her job and commitment.

    260. scottish_skier says:

      @Neil Craig

      Seems UKIP no longer believe in ‘keeping the flame of Thatcherism alive’ and are shifting left, abandoning libertarian / free market ideals / small government. I guess this is because they just want to get into power and free market ideals don’t square with tight immigration controls (free market needs freedom of movement of labour)? This looks like policy flipping like Darling flips houses.

      If someone supports economic libertarianism, the left shifting UKIP are not for them it would appear.

      Anyway, I’m just reading through the UKIP 2011 Scottish Manifesto.

      Now removed from UKIP site for some reason but I have a copy (my thoughts on UKIP are based on their own documents / words rather than only those of the UK press).

      “UKIP alone trusts Scottish and British people”

      “Restrict immigration so Scotland will be for the Scots and the British first”


      Firstly, Scots are not British as the two are clearly distinguished as separate groups. British presumably in UKIP eyes = English.

      Thus UKIP think Scotland should be for the English [British] but also, kindly, for the Scots too. This agrees with what I was saying earlier; UKIP are apparently fine with uncontrolled immigration to Scotland as long as immigrants are of a certain type (English). That’s pretty hypocritical. Or am I wrong here? Do UKIP believe Scotland should have a completely open border to nearly 60 million people which is well over 7x its population? That’s no different from other UK and Scottish parties, including the SNP. I’m fine with that – part and parcel of being in the EU – but I fail to see the point of people voting UKIP if they do support tight border controls for Scotland; UKIP offer no such thing.

      Finally, my wife’s presence here should be ‘restricted’, and according to David Coburn, breeding should be best kept for ‘Scots/British’ only, which presumably means my kid is some sort of undesirable.

      Oh, and apologies for chrome’s choice of spelling correction – almost there. You seem to have understood however.

    261. Ken500 says:

      The 50th Day (to the Referendum) was the only time Scotland go blanket coverage in the UK Media in nearly 100 years. Independent by 2028. It will have taken 100 years, to achieve.

    262. Thistle says:


      Thanks for contributions so far. We are half way to funding levels and 46hours to go…

    263. caz-m says:

      Robert Peffers

      The Royals have turned into a very expensive joke.

      If England want to fund these individual projects like Trident or the Royals or Nuclear power stations or HS2, then let them get on with it, just as long as it does not include a penny of Scotland’s money.

    264. David Smith says:

      Clapton is Gord..? 😉

    265. alistair says:

      Drove through to Glasgow this morning and very surprised to hear continual advert on Capital Radio from Sunday Times about Bannockburn pull out and final line being getting “our independence from the English”.
      Now that wouldn’t be some cynical ploy to sell some newspapers would it ?

    266. Robert Peffers says:

      @caz-m says: “The Royals have turned into a very expensive joke”.

      Here’s a few considerations of the Royal factor in the independence debate for you. The entire history and legal standing of the entire, “United Kingdom”, hinges upon the Royal personage and we lose the whole argument if we do not acknowledge that simple fact.

      The title, “United Kingdom”, states clearly that the union is legally one of Kingdoms and not one of either countries nor of states. The Unionist legal arguments all hinge upon ignoring that irrefutable fact.

      So let’s consider the matter in that light, shall we? We begin in 1284 when the Kingdom of England subsumed the Princedom of Wales. First military might and then with, “The Statute of Rhuddlan”. Thus the Kingdom of England then legally contained two countries.

      Then, in 1542, The Kingdom of England that, already had its monarchy claim to be Lords of Ireland, forced the Parliament of Ireland to pass, “The Crown of Ireland Act”, which placed the crown of Ireland upon the head of the English monarchy and made the Kingdom of England a three country Kingdom.

      At this point there was only two independent British Kingdoms and the then international authority, The Pope in Rome, had affirmed that Scotland was indeed an independent Kingdom after the Scottish, “Declaration of Arbroath”, of 1320.

      Then the King of Scots, Jamie Saxt, inherited the crown of the three country Kingdom of England but he failed to form a, “United Kingdom. This is why his designation remained, James I of England & VI of Scotland and not James I of Great Britain. Note that neither Wales or Ireland are mentioned as they remained part of the Kingdom of England.

      The next significant action was the English, “Glorious Revolution”, in 1688. This saw the English Parliament depose the monarch of the, STILL INDEPENDENT, Kingdom of England but that did nt affect the monarchy of the STILL INDEPENDENT Kingdom of Scotland. Thus began the 57 year long Jacobite Uprisings that spanned the Treaty of Union.

      Ignoring the English underhand dealings leading to the treaty then let us consider the legal situation of the Treaty of Union.

      The first significant fact is that it is an existing, legally binding, International argeement. It is composed of, ‘Articles of Union’, and thus each article deals with a specific item. Here are the first, and most important, three.
      Article I instigates the, “United KINGDOM”, of only two former independent kingdoms.

      Article II deals with the accession and succession to the joint Royal Realm.
      Article III creates a, totally new, joint Parliament of the new joint, two party, United Kingdom.

      Significantly there is no mention of inequality between the two and the treaty agrees that the two former kingdoms will retain their independent legal systems. As that means the three country Kingdom of England is a constitutional monarchy then the three countries share a legal situation of the monarchy owning the three countries and her Majesty’s subjects in those three countries.

      However, Scots law hinges upon the people of Scotland being sovereign and thus the royal is legally our subject.

      We really, really, do not want to ditch the royal personage at least until we present the actual legal facts to the international bodies the United KINGDOM holds treaties with. Ergo There cannot be an rUK after a two party United Kingdom disunites.

    267. Lochside says:

      Missed most of this because busy last couple of days…so as I commented a week ago on this….I don’t actually believe this ceremony (Selkirk) originated because of threats from landowners.

      I believe same landowners have hijacked the real reason i.e. commemoration of the survivor Fletcher coming back with the flag from Flodden and the loss of all the others.

      Having grown up in the the western borders, (like Tam Jardine, hiya Tam), I well know the servile mentality inculcated into many of the rural population over hundreds of years by the Robber baron aristocracy still lording it overhuge swathes of Southern Scottish land.

      The evidence being an undiminishing tory vote.The proof at Selkirk is the waving of the Union flag (1603 onwards) and singing God Save the Queen (1745 onwards).

      An undeniable perversion of history…. a flag of intended incorporation of Scotland and an anti-Scottish agitpop being used to represent a slaughter of Scottish patriots?

      Don’t make me grue!

    268. Gary says:

      In the Borders (as in much of Scotland) local customs tend to be rather set in their ways and are usually not ‘up with the times’. As someone who has actually studied and taught Scottish history I object to the incorrect statements (about keeping out English) that Adam Learmonth makes, and personally I think the introduction (bashing the Selkirk common riding) has little relevance to the rest of the article (which I have no problem with).

      That said, I do find many of the elements of the common ridings to be backward and twee at best, and downright Ulster unionist in their wrongness at their worst. For most of the locals involved, they are an excuse to get drunk and have fun, and few will pay heed to the very mixed messages that are involved.

      A friend of mine from the Selkirk area said that ‘it is not political’, but I think when you have national flags and sing a national anthem, and couple it to inward looking conservative culture, it starts to become so. Which is a shame, because there is also quite a few good elements to the common riding culture, but they sit very uneasily (in my mind at least) with the backward looking rural conservatism and unionism.

    269. Neil Craig says:

      Skier you entire defence (apart from refusing to answer the question) is to claim that Scots aren’t British. That is loony.

      It also happens to be counter to the Yes campaign’s current claim that they aren’t trying to break the British social union. Perhaps you could say which “truth” is the current one to be relied on.

    270. Tam Jardine says:


      Belated Guid Nychburris greetings. To the uninitiated, Guid Nychburris is Dumfries’ gala day involving a riding of the marches (similar idea – marking the royal burgh to stop neighbouring landowners encroaching). From what I recall it was also a rip roaring booze up for the whole town.

      My last Guid Nychburris was back in 96 when this most debauched day coincided with Scotland v England at The Euros. Braveheart was played before the game at Oscars and after the defeat I thought a passing cop car was going to be attacked, so angry were the crowd.

      Strange, difficult to define place unlike anywhere I have ever visited. Never a nationalist heartland and yet Burns, national hero (and prominent yes supporter) is part of the firmament. Robert the Bruce murdered the Red Comyn on holy ground in an act that I grew up very comfortable with such is his standing.

      Dumfries felt remote from Edinburgh and London – and has suffered from underinvestment and disinterest from both. I hope my beautiful home town can deliver a Yes (or even just a narrow No). Independence will be great if we can spread a little government and a load of investment south.

      How is the campaign going so far in the town? I only get back now and again. Canny wait for the new season!

    271. Tam Jardine says:

      Tam Jardine

      I hope my beautiful home town can deliver a Yes (or even just a narrow No). 

      To clarify Tam – a narrow local No in the context of a national Yes! A national No – narrow or otherwise and the Scottish psyche will suffer the cruellest of blows.

      I was reflecting on the campaign today – it strikes me that the UK government are engaged in a nonviolent war with the Scottish people over possession and sovereignty of this country and in that context we should not be surprised by any tactic, no matter how dispicable.

      It’s probably time to stop speaking to the hostile media and just address the people direct. And denounce the BBC.

    272. scullys gusset sooker says:

      Selkirk is clearly full of retards.

    273. Paula Rose says:

      There are no retards in Scotland – that is an unacceptable usage.

    274. Adrian B says:

      Plenty of good people in Selkirk and the surrounding area. There are many very Pro Indy people but in the wider Borders area there is some very strong ‘No’ voters. It was the same for the original Scottish Devolved Parliament referendum.

      Its strong Lib Dem country and there are a lot of Tories. Labour vote is pretty small in the Borders.

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