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The integrity of a nation

Posted on January 14, 2021 by

This time almost exactly two years ago I sat in a cafe close to Holyrood in a state of what I can only call shock. The enormity of what I’d just heard was sinking in; over the preceding nearly three hours I’d been introduced to all the gory detail of the plot against Alex Salmond. The last two years has at times been surreal for me as a result.

To explain what I am going to write next I need to tell you something about my fundamental beliefs. I have worked close to the power of government my whole life. I have studied and read widely on power. I am also a strong believer in social change.

Everything I have seen has driven me to the same conclusion: that nothing is more important than integrity in public life. That may seem anachronistic to some (given modern political culture) and not particularly left-wing. But the positive change I want cannot be built on anything but the firmest of foundations; when corruption or misuse of power creeps into those foundations, nothing good can be built on them.

Some on the right of politics are anti-state and for them a discredited public realm has its uses. For the left, nothing good ever, ever comes from it.

There is no doubt in my mind that there was and is a coordinated plan of action created by a powerful group of people, developed and executed in secret but using public resources, all with the sole purpose of forcing a perceived opponent out of public life in Scotland.

I then have no doubt that when this plan was at risk of collapsing and exposing those who perpetrated it, they instigated a wide-ranging cover up. My suspicion is that it was not initially the intention to seek to jail Salmond, and that this was a result of an escalation to distract attention as part of the cover-up operation. Yet that is the direction in which this plan proceeded, nonetheless.

There is no greater abuse of power than to use it arbitrarily to remove someone’s liberty. This is absolutely not the “rough and tumble” of politics. It has no place in Scotland. None.

At this stage I need to make some more things clear. This is no longer anything to do with Alex Salmond, his reputation, his career or his future. He was investigated thoroughly, tried in a court of law and acquitted of all charges. It is worth adding that he was not acquitted because his actions were “dodgy” yet failed to meet the threshold of criminality but because the jury believed his defence that none of them happened.

It is not about contentious political issues such as independence or the Gender Reform Act. It is not about crucial social and cultural debates such as the Me Too movement. I am open that I believe Nicola Sturgeon has run a poor administration and has repeatedly misled the independence movement in a way that has harmed our chances of independence. But it’s not about that either.

Nor am I any kind of Alex Salmond fanboy. This is not about a personal squabble or some “psychodrama”. It certainly isn’t some spurious debate about “civic” versus “populist” nationalism. The sheer volume of dust being thrown up to obscure what this is really about is in itself telling.

So you must clear your mind of all of these issues and focus on the sole and single issue this is about; are there people in a position of power in Scotland who misused that power in a manner which makes them unfit to hold office or employment? (If this gives you difficulty, perhaps remove the names and think in terms of “Politician A” and “Civil Servant B”.)

In what follows I will try, carefully and without emotive language, to take you through how I reached my conclusions. I will seek very hard to only state as fact things that are public record, and to make absolutely clear where I am introducing my own opinion and analysis.

(There are far, far too many references to include throughout as this relates to thousands of disclosed government papers available here. Gordon Dangerfield has gone through many of those forensically on his blog here. I have never at any point had access to nor specific knowledge of material not in the public domain but have broad awareness of what it is believed to indicate.)

But yes, I am of the decided view that people in a position of power in Scotland misused that power in a manner which is not acceptable. I believe that it started when a complaints procedure was created and designed to target a specific individual and pushed through over strong objections from the UK civil service.

In a position of power, you should never create laws or procedures for a purpose related to the pursuit of an individual; it represents a gross misuse of those powers.

I am of the decided view that the same people merged this process with the “grooming” of complainants against the same individual, and on this a ruling of the Court of Session strongly suggests I am correct.

There are then too many details concerning the fundamentally improper manner in which this complaints process was subsequently pursued to cover here, but it is all documented and will reach the public domain eventually. This too was a gross abuse of power.

It seems that at this point, those behind these actions became aware of their risk of exposure as a result of legal arguments they had become aware of, and I believe this is when the cover-up began.

The first crucial element of this cover-up was for the most senior of government politicians to arrange a meeting to discuss sensitive government business at her house, seemingly deliberately doing so with the express intent of excluding civil servants from documenting this meeting and then subsequently, when caught, to knowingly and repeatedly to mislead parliament about that meeting. I believe this is confirmed by existing information in the public domain.

I then believe that, aware their position was coming into substantial jeopardy, the participants in this operation sought to move the focus away from their actions by escalating the matter to a criminal one by reporting information to the police, information they had access to for at least six months previously but did not act on (done against the wishes of the complainants).

At this point we have moved into the territory of the kind of behaviour we seldom see in western Europe. Certainly, seeking to jail someone for political expediency is something I did not believe I would see in Scotland in my lifetime. Pause must be taken here to take in the enormity of this.

As part of that process, I believe that a leak of information which is probably criminal in nature was carried out from within the office of the politician and on this the investigation of the Information Commissioner’s Office strongly suggests I am correct. I do not believe that it is feasible this happened without the authorisation of the politician (though I am aware of no hard evidence for this).

The affair now moves into two strands. The first involves continued efforts to cover up what has happened through the repeated failure to produce documents, even in the face of a Court Warrant, and in this a judge at the Court of Session concurs (on fact, not motive). This appears to be, on the face of it, contempt of court.

This also involves what I believe appears to be pressure exerted on Government lawyers to misrepresent facts in court up to the point where they threatened to resign (this latter point is public record).

The Scottish Government continued this behaviour in the face of at least one (and probably more) legal opinion that it would be ruled against but only admitted fault when more damaging material appeared to be about to be exposed. The ruling on the part of the Judge in this case was damning and the award made was extraordinarily harsh on the Scottish Government.

From there the cover-up, I believe, is fairly apparent, ranging from refusing to reveal legal advice to doing everything possible to avoid document disclosure to creating the remit of inquiries deliberately designed to prevent proper investigation of what has happened to repeatedly evasive and factually incorrect evidence given to a Parliamentary Committee.

The second strand involved the criminal case, and while there was some crossover of participants this was pursued largely by the apparatus of the political party of which the politician is a member. Much less of this evidence is currently publicly available, so I will restrict myself to saying that staff of that party appeared to have sought to maximise the number of complaints and put pressure on the police.

These two strands recombine during the resultant criminal trial, where there may be a case to be made that the repeated refusal to produce relevant documents represents an attempt to pervert the course of justice and contribute to the imprisonment of a man by withholding evidence relevant to his defence.

Perhaps the pinnacle of this for me is the testimony of Woman H, by far the most serious of the charges presented (attempted rape). Here the prosecution led no properly admissible evidence that she was even in the building where the alleged attempted rape took place. The defence led multiple pieces of evidence including reliable eye-witness testimony that she was never there.

The circumstances around this testimony are deeply concerning and it seems to be clear perjury. I can’t comment any more, but for me it sums up this whole sorry affair.

I haven’t even mentioned what I find to be the difficult-to-understand decision by the Crown Office and Prosecutor Fiscal Service to bring this case to court, nor its (for me) subsequent chilling pursuit of supporters of the man tried. I also have some concerns about what I know of the actions of the police. The role of some publicly-funded agencies and the publicly-funded BBC in the aftermath only contribute to my unease.

There is so much more, so much that will come out and this will be worse still than what you’ve seen so far. The damage I believe this is likely to do to confidence in the conduct of public life in Scotland is substantial.

That the politician is Nicola Sturgeon, the man Alex Salmond, the civil servants a group surrounding Leslie Evans and the party officials a group surrounding Peter Murrell (husband of Sturgeon) should play no part in affecting the details I have set out above.

I have never in my life called for someone to resign. If they should be fired, they should be fired; but resignation should be a matter of honour, so calling for it seems futile to me. But I can see no circumstances in which it should be acceptable for Nicola Sturgeon to remain in office. Any one of half a dozen the above acts perpetrated by a member of Boris Johnson’s cabinet would have the SNP demanding their head.

From there it seems to me to be a question only of how many of the civil servants and paid officials of the SNP should be sacked for misconduct. Some of the civil servants seem to me clearly to need to face contempt of court proceedings and there are a number of people involved who seem to me at least terribly close to “conspiracy to pervert the course of justice” territory.

I want only to finish with a few thoughts on the ramifications of all of this, firstly for public life in Scotland.

I have made no secret of my growing concern about the state of democracy in Scotland nor the way public officials perform their duties. There seems to me now to be a messianic cult of impunity among far too many senior officials. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that this has rattled my confidence in the health of Scotland as a nation right now.

There must be reform of governance in Scotland and a root and branch review of the civil service and its agencies. I struggle to understand how the Lord Advocate is still in post (what exactly is the ‘correct’ number of malicious prosecutions he can admit to in any given year?) and his existence as an active member of Cabinet is clearly contrary to EU law (enshrined in domestic law) that the Executive (government) and judiciary (legal system) are independent of each other.

If this rattles the confidence of the public in Scotland then I can hardly blame them, and I can’t see what the option is other than (finally) honesty, full disclosure and reform.

Talk of continuity in government during the Covid crisis is neither here nor there. If continuity means failure to ensure integrity, we have a bigger problem. Surely someone else can do a press conference every morning and no-one is asking health officials to resign. The vast majority of the SNP’s politicians are good and honest people who had nothing whatsoever to do with this; there will be no problem forming a strong working government.

Finally, the cause of independence. I have said over and over to the small group of people whom I’ve spoken to about this that harm was inevitable from the moment the “original sin” of this affair took place.

In the last week there has been much chatter from people who support independence of the sort “but she’s so popular, can’t we turn a blind eye to this, at least for a while?”

I of course have sympathy for the many grassroots activists I so admire and who have been let down by this, but I have two responses.

The first is simple; directly before the Watergate scandal Richard Nixon had approval ratings of 68 per cent, substantially better than Nicola Sturgeon’s – and this whole affair has remarkable parallels with Watergate.

This will out eventually. I wish dearly that Nicola Sturgeon had found a dignified excuse to fall on her sword long before now and it might actually have been possible to avoid this (for now, if not for the history books). But she didn’t. Every part of this traces back to her, her team, her husband and her close confidants. If you’re angry about this (you should be) that’s where to direct it.

We sure as hell can’t afford this to dominate the 2021 Holyrood election and there is a very real risk it will.

But to return right back to the beginning, while I have sympathy to those wishing we could “turn a blind eye”, in the end that is the Ted Cruz/Mitch McConnell position – and how is that working out for them?

It is almost explicitly to say that you are content for a new Scotland to be born from corruption, so long as it is born. But I can’t tell you how much of a mistake that is – there is no redemption for us from such a stance. Our future, our nation must be born from honesty and integrity or you should want no part of it. I certainly don’t.

“Just this one corrupt conspiracy and no more, we promise” can’t be acceptable, can’t be how we carry ourselves into the future. Whatever price we pay for this we must pay, and we must then atone and rebuild. We can still win an election if we start right now.

I wish I had an alternative for you. I wish, I so deeply wish, this had never happened. None of it. Even now I wish I didn’t feel I need to write these things. But I do feel I need to, for my own conscience if nothing else. My silence would leave me feeling complicit and I can’t live with that. I would have written the same even for a leader I admired and supported.

And I have already lived for these two years with the knowledge of this wound deep into things I care very much about – Scotland, its future as an independent nation and its ability to be a much better place than one where a fifth of the people live in poverty.

We have been dragged here and whether it is now, during the election or in the months after when we should be moving purposely towards independence, this is all going to pour into the public domain like it or not.

And because it will poison all it touches, those responsible must remove themselves or be removed and rapidly be distanced from the cause of independence and Scotland’s public realm.

.

Robin McAlpine is a political activist and Director of the Common Weal thinktank. This article also appears on Source.

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    366 to “The integrity of a nation”

    1. Al-Stuart says:

      .
      Thank you Robin.

      Hopefully we will NOT go down the path of New Labour. When the main electorate find out they have been lied to and cheated by their leaders, they leave that party never to return.

      I left Labour and will never vote for them again.

      Am about to leave the SNP unless the midden fae Dreghorn and her Coven are removed..

    2. Steve Dron says:

      I have yearned for Independence for as long as I can remember, but if an Independent Scotland is a mirror of the Westminster example of power, patronage, privilege and corruption you can keep it, it would be pointless.

    3. Beaker says:

      It is good to see an article written with such open honesty.

      Very informative, but it raises the question just what information do opponents have to hand? I’d suggest a substantial amount.

    4. And Spouse says:

      What I find scary is why none of this is in the press. I was one who supported NS at the start, not now. As the story has unfolded from conspiracy theory, it has become obvious she needs to go. Well written piece, Sir

    5. Duncan Clark says:

      This can’t have been easy to write. Thank you Robin.

      Now, we start working to fix it.

    6. Captain Yossarian says:

      A country which has ancient universities teaching law and which was one of the countries which led the enlightenment movement throughout Europe has been brought to this. 20-years of Holyrood has ended thus.

      As the excellent ‘Willie’ said on these pages a couple of days ago: the Scottish legal profession will happily ‘hang some nig-nog native from a tree and it will all be over’.

      Within a few days, this excellent journalism has exposed more than Holyrood’s Inquiry ever would have done. In fact, who actually cares what the Holyrood Inquiry finds now….you have it all here.

      Corrupt semi-authoritarian regimes all over the world submit in the end and it is usually the Metropolitan Police they go to for they have a reputation, whilst not perfect, it is far greater in terms of honesty than Police Scotland could ever hope to emulate.

      It’s time to call them-in?

      One thing is for certain: Sturgeon, Swinney, Evans and Wolffe are goners now.

    7. Bob Mack says:

      Thank you Robin.

      A conspiracy by its very nature is not a written agreement between parties. It is a clandestine objective by individuals to obtain an end which they desire.

      Nicola supporters demand show me the evidence as if somehow it would all be documented somewhere. That is not what conspirators do.

      It is an activity carried out primarily by verbal communique to avoid writing it down. There are however clear indications from which to draw conclusions. They are all there, only requiring to join the dots.

      You have covered many of them.

    8. Hatuey says:

      “It is almost explicitly to say that you are content for a new Scotland to be born from corruption, so long as it is born.”

      Don’t get that part… but excellent.

      I could tell something was eating Robin. Now I know what.

    9. Gareth says:

      This whole sorry affair seems to chime with the SNP’s general ‘back of a fag packet’ approach to legislation and legal process. I find it genuinely worrisome where these impulses could lead us in an independent Scotland.

    10. Derick fae Yell says:

      “it will poison all it touches”

      Yes – that.

    11. Douglas says:

      ‘I am in blood / Stepped in so far, that, should I wade no more, / Returning were as tedious as go o’er’ (III. 4.136–8).

      -Shakespeare’s Scottish Play
      It started with a minor underhand political manoeuvre that needed more and more and more to complete it and cover it up and ended up monstrous

      Awful

    12. Jim Arnott says:

      Thank you Robin for a piece of inspirational writing. Not much to add except for the £55,000 of public money that may have been spent “coaching” civil servants on how to behave and answers questions from the Committee investigating the Scottish Governments complaints procedure.

    13. Dorothy Devine says:

      That article is superb , thank you Robin McAlpine.

      Integrity , honesty in independence is my desire too. Sick and tired of the spite and shite.

    14. Skip_NC says:

      Stu has done a lot of good work on this whole issue, especially in the last week, but a different style sometimes helps to reinforce a message. Thank you, Mr McAlpine, for taking the time to write this. It needs to be shared far and wide.

    15. red sunset says:

      Thank you Robin. Must have been difficult to write.
      A succinct synopsis of evil.

      You are very right. We cannot be “as if you’re in the early days of a better nation” when we know it could be built on pig swill.
      The midden needs to be cleaned out.

    16. Stephen Sustad says:

      Very very sad. My one question. Why all this effort to hobble Salmond? He had moved off the scene.

    17. Captain Yossarian says:

      They’ve closed down the internet in Uganda just now. There’s an election going-on there and the Government want to silence dissenters and silence reports of wrongdoing.

      Makes you wonder what Sturgeon and Swinney would do here, given half the chance.

      I have watched this site for the past week and it is the most powerful journalism I can remember ever having read in my life.

      Well-done to all.

    18. Prasad says:

      If Sturgeon wanted or cared about Independence she would have resigned this week.
      Her smearing of Salmond last week was so low, she has now shown her true colours and it that is of someone who isn’t going to do anything honourably and has also revealed that she really isn’t as smart as people think she is. She is going to stay and could do some real damage.
      I suspect that the public don’t know or care about this but when the election fight kicks off it will be impossible to hide. She has to go now.

    19. ghostly606 says:

      @ Hatuey

      You need to read the end of the previous paragraph to which this is a continuation of. We don’t want indy if it is based on corruption. I quite agree.

    20. Republicofscotland says:

      Well Robin I bet you’re relieved that you got that off your chest, and into the open, we’ve all been dragging the same ball and chain ever since the Rev exposed it.

      You pen a good synopsis of the current state of (foul) play in Scotland, and lay out how we must proceed after we cleanse those that need cleansing from our parliament.

      Lets hope, no let make sure, that we do remove Sturgeon and her nefarious clique sooner than later. I’d really like to see May’s election used as a plebiscite for indy as well.

    21. Captain Yossarian says:

      As someone else said on these pages a week or so ago; who will be gone first…Trump…or Sturgeon?

      It may be very, very close.

    22. Kenny says:

      Excellent piece, Robin.
      I consider you to be a person of endless integrity in our movement (as is Stuart Campbell) and when you talk everybody harks to hear your words. I’m gladdened that you chose this platform to target the corruption in our movement.
      Isn’t it incredible? we’ve been conducting ourselves, on the whole, impeccably since the announcement of the first referendum but we’re let down, woefully, by that bastard, Sturgeon and her gang of crooks?

      No wonder Fabiani’s unable to control herself; she reminds me of the angry parent who, exasperated by the lousy behaviour of her friend’s children, forcibly scolds her own child for the most trivial matter in the hope it’ll set an example to her friend’s unruly children. Fabiani’s rant at Salmond says the following to Sturgeon, Murrell and the rest of them; ‘You stupid, rank amateurs – you cannot conduct yourselves as you have and think you can bloody-well walk away with no muck sticking to you!’

      Get the hell out of the SNP, Sturgeon – NOW – you are the very definition of rotten, soiled goods.

    23. ScottieDog says:

      This is written by one of the people I respect most in the independence movement.

    24. Captain Yossarian says:

      Maybe someone should ask Ian Blackford: ‘Where stands he now?’

    25. Gregor says:

      WHERE ARE YOU POLICE SCOTLAND (have you no integrity) ???

      DO YOUR FU**ING JOB…

    26. James Horace says:

      Who will be the first genuine Sturgeon ally to publicly turn against her?

    27. Lothianlad says:

      Like I’ve said many times, sturgeon was and is controlled by the dark forces of the British state.

      It would take too long for me again to type out how I believe she was controlled, but controlled she was.

      This was her making, because she was power hungry and when opportunity came, with a price, she bought. Now we are all.paying the price.
      Her price is utter compliance, or consequences.

      This should not be a surprise to anyone.
      How did we get here? SNP in power and hugely popular with large thanks to Alex Salmond.

      What is the agenda of the british state secret service, defence of the realm.
      To oppose its biggest threats. That would be the SNP.

      They did it in ireland to the IRA with devastating effects. And despite the power sharing, peace process etc… ireland is still divided.

      Who benefited when the SNP implode, the british state.

      The unionist media have been holding their fire with this until the right time, for them. It coming to end game soon.

      How could we be this close to independence, and be so utterly divided if this was not all set up. ?

      The brit secret service have been plotting something like this for years!

      Ask yourselves this, who has the power to organize it, ? Who be befits? Who has the power to cover it up??

      Either way the implosion if the SNP by discrediting Alex and or getting sturgeon to drink from the poisoned chalice is their work.

      The others involved were pawns being played.

      Sturgeon was viciously ambitious if you watch her rise through the SNP ranks.
      Now her legacy will be liar not heroine.

      As for Scotland, our history of fighting a truly dirty opponent for our freedom us repeating itself.

      But freedom we must have, or, we will be living in a union, where this is the norm.

    28. Gregor says:

      ‘Rule of Law’, this is your watershed moment (don’t be stupid)…

    29. Liam Garvey says:

      This is awful.
      Just when all the signs are that the people of Scotland have plucked up the courage to take their rightful place among the nations of the world the people entrusted with the sacred duty to make it happen are shown to be venal and corrupt.

      The most important line in this excellent, angry piece is that there are enough good people in the SNP to take the reins of power when she is gone and drive the cause of independence, and Scotland, forward.

    30. Tony O'Neill says:

      Is there anyone in the snp mp’s or msp’s who has the moral fibre to call them out and demand resignations??.

    31. Saffron Robe says:

      Excellent article Robin, really well written. Couldn’t agree more. Every word reverberates with the truth.

      We all feel your pain and share your hope.

    32. David Coia says:

      The greatest motivational factor, for me, in fighting for an Independent Scotland has always been to finally rid ourselves of the corruption inherent in the Westminster system. (Brought into sharp focus during the pandemic).
      I am thoroughly sickened by the behaviour of those at the top of the SNP and as such I cannot in good conscience vote for them. It breaks my heart typing this but as you say Robin, corruption cannot be built in to the foundations of a newly independent nation.
      If they really believed in an Independent Scotland they would go now. I wonder if they do.

    33. Dave M says:

      Well, Robin hasn’t missed and hit the wall instead. There is something rotten at the heart of our politics at the moment.

    34. Andy Ellis says:

      “Our future, our nation must be born from honesty and integrity or you should want no part of it. I certainly don’t.”

      Hear, hear!

      This should be nailed to the door of every SNP MP, MSP, councillor and apparatchik. They have failed us and desecrated the cause of independence.

    35. WhoRattledYourCage says:

      Excellent summation of the current state of Scottish affairs, Robin. I genuinely find the mentality of people baying at Alex Salmond for defending himself to be incredible, and the depth of misplaced anger towards him utterly incredible.

      Ms. Sturgeon and her coffee morning backslapping and backstabbing old girls network are a sick sham. They have tried to destroy the life of a true patriot, and I am thankful that their limited intelligence and political ability was such that they were unable to pull off this vile, slanderous, twisted, evil feat. They all are an absolute disgrace to Scotland.

      This country is being dragged down the toilet, with people starving, things getting worse all the time, and these careerist manhaters have done nothing but sling mud at Alex Salmond over a glass of prosecco on Twitter. Middle class fools, they have never really wanted for anything (except self-righteous, pompous, wannabe-American point-scoring intersectionalist ‘credibility’ among their decorticated peers), and cannot perceive the urgency of parents trying to feed their children on meagre foodbank handouts.

      THIS is what Scotland and the SNP should be aboot, and be fighting against, not posing online and pretending to be American. They nauseate me and any right-thinking Scottish person. And anybody supporting the cowardly manhating attackers of an innocent man, you need to have a long, hard talk to yourself. ESPECIALLY if you’re a man, because these women DO NOT LIKE YOU, and the next man in the court attacked by these mendacious, braindead, sleekit, sociopathic loons anonymously and constantly could be YOU.

    36. Bob Costello says:

      Well, that is putting it right on the line.Well done Robin

    37. David Coia says:

      I should have added: why? Why did this whole sorry mess start in the first place. What was the motivation?

    38. cirsium says:

      thank you Robin – a broadside of a post.

      (what exactly is the ‘correct’ number of malicious prosecutions he can admit to in any given year?)

      I’m still savouring that question.

    39. Kevin Cargill says:

      This is by far the clearest, most accurate and understandable summary of this whole sorry event to date. This should be disseminated far and wide in Indy circles and particularly among those who are currently burying their heads in the sand and hoping the papers continue with their silence.

    40. Lothianlad says:

      Tony O’Neill says:
      14 January, 2021 at 9:07 pm

      Is there anyone in the snp mp’s or msp’s who has the moral fibre to call them out and demand resignations??.

      No Terry it would sadly seem not. Not many anyway. It would seem that even ‘ honest John’ has taken the concept of collective responsibility to new depths.

      In midlothian, we have an MP who never, ever promotes independence but works the selection process to get selected and creams of a very comfortable lifestyle at the public’s expense.
      A gravy train unprincipled politician the like of which new labour would be proud. And a sturgeon loyalist.

      Then there is the former national treasurer who couldn’t explain the missing ring fenced indy ref fighting fund. He is Midlothians MSP. Also a sturgeon loyalistvwho has benefitted handsomely from his parliamentary career.

      And that’s just my constituency. I’m sad to say I suspect there are many more in Scotland who find wealth and fat living from the noble cause the once claimed to care about.

      Maybe if Sturgeon does go, things will change, but for me, far too many of the careerists still exist.

    41. Lothianlad says:

      Sorry Tony, predictive text

    42. Mist001 says:

      What’s the betting that Mrs. Murrell throws Evans under the bus and it’ll be presented as her ‘doing the right thing’ and thus maintaining and boosting her popularity?

      It’s not Masonic but I’ve said it before, this comes from The Law Society Of Scotland and The Speculative Society who are essentially for want of a better word ‘Establishment’ groups, extremely powerful and insidious groups who will do anything and everything that they possibly can to maintain the status quo of a United Kingdom and ‘The Crown’.

      I doubt that Scotland will ever achieve independence via democracy. Even Mrs. Murrell herself, that champion of Scottish Independence has proven herself publicly for the past four years at least, to be anti-democratic.

      The roots of corruption in Scotland go far deeper than the Scottish Government, the Murrells and their acolytes. The roots are people whose names are unknown publicly, shun publicity. You walk past these people on the streets of Edinburgh. You maybe even say ‘Good morning’ to them.

      It’s called The Establishment because it’s established. Other countries are run by the Mafia. The United Kingdom is run by the same thing under another name. The Establishment.

    43. Hatuey says:

      Ghostly, thanks, I tried that. My brain hurts. I guess I’m just tired.

    44. Sweep says:

      Robin, you say “the majority of the SNP’s politicians are good and honest people who had nothing whatsoever to do with this”. Are they? Among that vast army of SNP MPs, MSPs, Councillors and backroom support, there is not one who saw, heard or read SOMETHING to make them wonder? At all?

      Even taking it down a notch from the stench of sheer corruption surrounding this particular series of events, what about the abrupt change of rules which effectively prevented (morally, at least) Joanna Cherry from standing for nomination for a constituency seat as an MSP? Where was the outcry from her party colleagues? How many of them signed the letter that was eventually issued? A handful?

      The old saying about good men doing nothing is well-worn but still relevant.

      You also say you believe “Nicola Sturgeon has repeatedly misled the independence movement in a way that has harmed our chances of independence.” Then why is it that, even now, I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of SNP MPs, MSP and councillors who have openly called for a change of strategy, a different direction.

      Where are the others? Where have they been? Heads bowed, hiding in plain sight.

      While I sincerely applaud the honesty of your article, which is heart-rending, I’m afraid I don’t share your confidence in the party’s ‘professional wing’.

      Perhaps harshly, (but then I’m not an SNP member), my Benefits of the Doubt cupboard is completely bare.

    45. Graeme Fraser says:

      Aye, there was an old woman who swallowed a fly…..

    46. Robert Louis says:

      This is an important and simply excellent piece of writing.

      It sums up how I feel. I was in the hydro cheering on NS when she took over the leadership six years ago, big foam finger and all.

      When I think of what has been done, it makes me feel sick. I feel let down.

      Perhaps it was all never meant to get out of control the way it did, but that is of little comfort when an innocent man, a great leader of Scotland, a man of integrity who very nearly lead us to independence, was almost condemmed to spend the rest of his days in Prison. Wholly innocent.

      NS should heed the advice above, and go. The sooner the better.

    47. Astonished says:

      This is an excellent summary.

      Police Scotland dig someone up who has integrity and start investigating or all senior officers are finished. Corruption corrupts.

      Captain Yossarian – pointless asking ‘we will not be taken out of europe…..’Blackford – he has given away any integrity he had.

    48. shug says:

      An excellent article Robin.
      It is in some way no surprise that the Scottish government carries such conflicts of interest within its structure given it was created by Westminster to be controlled by Westminster. It was never intended to be successful. It certainly lays out the need for a thorough look at the constitution of an independent Scotland be this a primary chamber, a secondary chamber, legal independence etc. The problem being, corrupt people will want to retain corrupt practices.
      I struggle to see who in the Scottish Parliament can take her place this close to an election and when the poll ratings are doing do well!
      There is no leader in the Labour party, not really one in the conservatives whose vote will now be split by Farrage oh and weee Willie and we have to deal with this now. On that count alone she needs to f… off quick along with the spaghetti folk. If she rides it out and does will in the election will we be stuck with the corrupt.
      There are a few MPs spring to mind but we need someone really good in the Scottish Parliament.

    49. You say,

      `seeking to jail someone for political expediency is something I did not believe I would see in Scotland in my lifetime.`

      Tommy Sheridan was jailed for political expediency,

      with the collusion of his own party the Scottish media and the Scottish judiciary.

    50. Black Joan says:

      Thank you, Robin.

    51. Dick Wall says:

      Thank you so much for this.

      Good governance is, or should be, our secret weapon in the west.

      But where there is no fear there is no caution, no conscience worth a damn.

      Like many major sins it can maybe be seen as the result of habituated development. The party lost its fear of the electorate, the press and the opposition years ago. They consider an action and fear of public opinion doesn’t feature in their thinking. They have a wide range of people across all parts of Scottish life in law, policing, health, 3rd sector, local Gov who depend on the party. The BBC seem to have got it too.

      So when Derek Mackay was sending texts to a wee laddie he had no fear. When she decided to buy boats in the Ferguson’s yard dodgy deal, no fear. When they think about prioritising drug deaths and can’t be bothered, no fear. Judge me on education, poor results but no fear.

      Attacking poverty, no fear let’s just blame Boris and not bother.

      Forgive me but this feels like the same circumstances that the Irish were apologising for this week. Large institutions with no fear just blundering through some daft internal logic about doing what is ultimately right, but delivering evil.

      The Tories look tired and bereft of ideas down south but they have an opposition to keep them largely out of the worst do do. Sadly the SNP don’t.

      Honesty or good governance was our secret weapon. Not now.

    52. Neily Boy says:

      Police Scotland, COPFS, civil servants and the compliant media are also in this up to their necks. This is now akin to Zimbabwe attempting to rid itself of Mugabe and sadly, with so many with so much to lose, it may be a real struggle to break through all the layers of corruption to reveal the truth in its revolting entirety.

    53. Gregor says:

      I’m convinced this isn’t merely a national issue, and that rogue deep-state apparatus, its unmitigated corruption and criminality, has deeply inflected all reaches of the globe, at the highest echelons of power.

      Hence the global turmoil (surely we can all do much better than this).

      I still have faith in humanity to turn things around…

    54. Colin Alexander says:

      The silence from SNP politicians is deafening.

      Tacit approval of all that Sturgeon and her cronies have done and continue to do.

    55. Cath says:

      The vast majority of the SNP’s politicians are good and honest people who had nothing whatsoever to do with this

      That may be true, but most of them also all know Alex Salmond very well, many for decades. Yet at best they have been utterly silent as this played out, at worst gone along with the headlines at their most venal and added to the smears. So forgive me if I there are a fair few I wouldn’t ever trust as a friend, colleague or confidant.

    56. Freshmint says:

      Mist001 says:
      14 January, 2021 at 9:27 pm

      “What’s the betting that Mrs. Murrell throws Evans under the bus”

      I think she’s going to try to throw a lot of people under that bus.

    57. Stuart MacKay says:

      Surely Swinney must now realise that when he was asked to limit the scope of the inquiry that the Murrels were simply soaking him in petrol as part of the plan to burn down the house if they were forced out.

      Everyone else must also realise that once the flame catch it will consume all. Better speak up now while you still can (not you Wishart).

    58. Muscleguy says:

      Thanks from me too Robin. This was a very careful yet detailed and heartfelt piece. It will serve as a good summary to direct folk to.

      i have tangled on twitter with the ‘lets leave it for after indy folk’ making many of the same points you do Robin. You are absolutely right, if we become independence with corruption at our heart then undoing it with all that will need doing then will be impossible. Who knows what corruptions will be sewn into our body poltic along with Independence if we do not lance this festering boil now and cauterise the wound.

      I’m in the ISP, I do want us to be elected to Holyrood and have to call for Sturgeon to resign at our first FMQ’s. Yet if she is still there we must.

    59. Iain More says:

      I don’t always agree with you Robin, in fact most of the time I cant abide you but I agree with almost everything you have written above. I wish I didn’t and it is more the pity that I do.

      To quote Robin

      “It is almost explicitly to say that you are content for a new Scotland to be born from corruption, so long as it is born. But I can’t tell you how much of a mistake that is – there is no redemption for us from such a stance. Our future, our nation must be born from honesty and integrity or you should want no part of it. I certainly don’t.”

      The Sturgeon Cult and the SNP Sycophants don’t see it though. I am not Pro Indy to turn Scotland into a smaller version of corrupt little Tory England. I want something better for the younger generations of my family. Sturgeon and her sycophantic cult will be a liability to the next Referendum campaign and to the health and well being of the younger generations of my family. Sturgeon must go!!

    60. Tannadice Boy says:

      Excellent insight by Robin and on reading his reference article on Governance. I think that’s the screaming issue for me. Checks and balances have been virtually nonexistent. A very weak committee system with no upper chamber or structural mechanism to test leglisation and throw it back. (Supreme Court- Named Person) Or challenge the Executive in any meaningful way. An example being the non release of the legal advice. Unless these structural and procedural aspects are changed then we can expect the abuse of power to happen again. However I don’t think we should beat ourselves up too much. A relatively new immature Parliament of 20 years has exposed these problems but they are solvable. There is no reason why an Independent Scotland couldn’t implement the required organisational change.

    61. kapelmeister says:

      A great statement from Robin McAlpine that surely resonates.

      In the Watergate aftermath no less than 48 of Nixon’s people were convicted, and most served jail time. That ought to give some of Sturgeon’s people pause to reflect.

    62. Cath says:

      I have watched this site for the past week and it is the most powerful journalism I can remember ever having read in my life.

      Certainly puts the Daily Record’s “Ooh look, a tweet we can’t tell you about” front page splash in the shade. And they wonder why they’re losing readers to blog journalists?

    63. Morgatron says:

      By god Robin, that is a fantastic piece. Thanks for writing this, which I’m sure was very difficult to write as it was to read .Like the majority of us on here and the wider community all we want a carring ,fair and just independent Scotland with our politicians leading with that as their compass. Thanks for posting Stu.

    64. Robert hughes says:

      That REALLY needed said .What right-minded person could disagree with a word of it ?

      100% Robin .Thanks

    65. Sunshine says:

      Any SNP elected official with integrity should be calling Robin up tonight and asking for their name to be signed to what he has just written.
      But who else will you vote for? is the cry.
      I dont need to vote.

    66. Gregor says:

      Repeat:

      If nobody is willing to take responsibility, how can we have accountability (a functioning society)…

    67. Jason Smoothpiece says:

      Thanks for that Robin.

      When the accusations were first made I was very confident that they were false.

      Apart from the fact that I thought Mr Salmond was a decent sort, I recall some years ago the scandal when he placed a bet on a horse.

      This act was front page asking if Mr Salmond had a betting problem.

      The press and certain agencies watched him so closely he couldn’t bet on a horse.

      If Alex Salmond was running around acting as a sex pest he would have been nailed some time ago.

      This affair demands a few folk see the inside of a cell.

    68. David Holden says:

      A constant theme from a lot of these various threads is how central and toxic woman H is to the whole scandal along with woman A. The identity of the various alphabet women unless to face charges is not that important as I suspect they are finished as their names are common knowledge to those that will end up running things once the stables are cleaned out.

    69. Hatuey says:

      For all that many will find Robin’s account of this debacle depressing and disturbing, it’s actually very optimistic. I’d say too optimistic, but not as a criticism. I just don’t believe the SNP or Scottish Politics can recover from this.

      Holyrood is basically Chernobyl. It’s going into meltdown when this unravels and it is unraveling. The radioactive groundwater feeds directly into the civil service, the judiciary, the police, the media, everything. It can’t be stopped.

      We are all in the past now. Scottish politics as we know it is history. The next political battle in Scotland will be fought with metaphorical sticks and stones. By that I mean devolution is over. We go back to the year dot.

      That big fancy building UKGov stuck in the middle of Edinburgh is going to be running the show.

      Oh well.

    70. Giesabrek says:

      A great article on the whole sorry affair Robin and agree entirely with it.

    71. Elmac says:

      Like all of us on here I never thought I would live to smell the stench of corruption that emanates from the SNP, the Scottish Government, the Judiciary and the police. We are in a catch 22. The SNP and the Scottish Government are up to their eyes in criminal conspiracy, lies and corruption and those you would expect to hold them to account such as the Judiciary and Police are in their pocket.

      It looks possible that Sturgeon may be forced to fall on her sword but what of “Lord” Woolf and Ian Livingstone. All have abused their position and conspired to pervert the course of justice. Their resignation and banishment from public life may be enough for some but I would prefer to seeing them doing a well earned stretch behind bars. As far as others such as Peter Murrell, Lesley Evans and their ilk who have had a part to play in this, I would like to see them subjected to the same scrutiny of the law as it would be applied to the ordinary man in the street. Finally there is the question of the poor alphabet women, forever protected by the law of anonymity which did not extend to the falsely accused. Well, hell mend them. They may have been led up the garden path by smooth talking politicians and civil servants but, in the final analysis they knowingly lied in a court of law and actively participated in an attempt to have an innocent man jailed. The fact that they are not now facing trial for perjury and criminal conspiracy speaks volume about the society we live in. These charges should be brought NOW.

      We need to change this. We need a root and branch clear out of the SNP or the rise of a new party solely focused on independence. The latter will cost us years but the status quo will cost us forever if not achieved. When we are finally rid of the Sturgeon cabal I sincerely hope there will be a properly conducted judicial review of what went on with the Salmond witch hunt and subsequent cover up and that justice will finally be served.

    72. L says:

      Well said Robin. It is a shame others don’t have the same courage to speak out. A clear out is required and I hope to see many resignations soon, hopefully before the election. Hopefully once this is all done for, a positive future can be built. Shocking to many; there is clearly a whole other dark personality to Nicola Sturgeon whose motives are the opposite to how she appears to the public, not too different from Westminster politics. All we can now is hope that this scandal doesn’t wreck any chance of independence while serving justice and punishing those who have done wrong.

    73. Hugh Jarse says:

      J’accuse!
      I’m sure Zola would approve.

      Your right of course.

      And brave to call it. As are others.
      😉

      Many of the poor cultists will need a smoking gun for their Damascene moment to occur.
      ………

      Leaking the Legal advice could be viewed as a moral duty.

      About this time, self protection should be the sensible and prudent choice of those around the fringes of the conspiracy, like lawyers.

      Remember guys, when NS goes, JW is toast.
      His ability to offer protection vanishes, and what’s left, you really don’t need tainted with.

    74. Mc Duff says:

      Great article Robin though I would offer a comment.
      Firstly I don’t think there was much pressure put on the police to pursue AS when you consider how they went after Murray and Hirst with apparent enthusiasm. That leads me to suspect some possible collusion involving very senior officers. And I also believe that criminal charges should be brought against those involved in the framing of AS.
      What isn’t explained is Sturgeon turning her back on independence on becoming FM.

    75. Robert hughes says:

      BTW .Respect to Stuart for providing WOS platform for this necessary post by Robin.

      Good man

    76. Sheepshagger says:

      Great piece apart from one small point.
      The Lord Advocate is not part of the judiciary rather he is the Scottish government’s chief law officer.

    77. Cath says:

      I just don’t believe the SNP or Scottish Politics can recover from this. Holyrood is basically Chernobyl. It’s going into meltdown when this unravels and it is unraveling. The radioactive groundwater feeds directly into the civil service, the judiciary, the police, the media, everything. It can’t be stopped.

      I’m less pessimistic. If Scotland becomes independent, there needs to be a radical reform, as at the moment we’re part of the UK state. To become independent without a radical shakeup of governance wouldn’t be independence. But yes, it could equally go the other way and the UK end up declaiming devolution a failed experiment and taking full control. Either way, I don’t think the status quo is tenable post Brexit, so it’s going one way or the other.

    78. Bob Mack says:

      The Lord Advocate is both at the same time.

    79. Beaker says:

      @Tannadice Boy says:
      14 January, 2021 at 9:49 pm
      “A relatively new immature Parliament of 20 years has exposed these problems but they are solvable. There is no reason why an Independent Scotland couldn’t implement the required organisational change.”

      True, but there should not – absolutely not – been any such problems from the start.

    80. Elmac says:

      Re Bob Mack @ 10.20

      Therein lies part of the problem.

    81. LaingB French says:

      THE MERE FACT THAT THIS TERRIBLE EPISODE HAS TAKEN HOLD AT SUCH AN AUSPICIOUS TIME REGARDLESS OF WHETHER ACTIONS ARE CARRIED OUT TO REMEDY THE MESS, WILL TAR OUR COUNTRY FOR A LONG WHILE TO COME. HOW WE CAN AVOID SUCH EXTREME POWER GRABBING IDEAOLOGY IN THE COMING ELECTIONS QUITE FRANKLY DUMBFOUNDS ME UNLESS WE CAN SOMEHOW INTRODUCE A LEGISLATION THAT PERMITS 100% TRANSPARENCY IN ALL PARTS OF THE GOVERNMENT AND THAT ALSO PREVENTS PEOPLES FROM PREVENTING INFORMATION REACHING THE PUBLIC EAR. I AM SO EMBARRASED OF MY FM AND HER TEAM THAT RIDICULING OTHER COUNTIRES MAKES ME FEEL LIKE A HYPOCRITE. WE NEED A CLEAN OUT FROM THE TOP DOWNWARDS OF SUCH AN INSIDIUOS CLICHE. SPRING CLEAN ALL OLD COBWEBS AND SLAP ON THE BACK TRADITIONS,LETS LAY DOWN A FRESH STRONG FOUNDATION SO THAT EVERYONE IN SCOTLAND CAN SEE SO CLEARLY THAT NO ONE SHALL BE LEFT OUT OF THE BENEFITS OF AN INDEPENDANT NUCLEAR FREE COUNTRY THAT STANDS FOR TRUE DEMOCRACY AND NOT AN INTERPRETATION OF IT. WE ARE EARTHLINGS, LETS WORK WITH ALL THE REST OF THEM AND HELP THERE WORLD IMPROVE TOO BY EXAMPLE.

    82. Stuart Macdonald says:

      Yes thanks Robin and I agree and with Robert Louis {and others} above – an excellent ‘summary’ of where we are unfortunately.

    83. Stuart Macdonald says:

      And thanks Mr Stuart Campbell again for all your work for us and for Scotland.

    84. Jockanese Wind Talker says:

      Great piece Robin.

      Standout lines for me are:

      “Our future, our nation must be born from honesty and integrity or you should want no part of it.”

      and

      “And because it will poison all it touches, those responsible must remove themselves or be removed and rapidly be distanced from the cause of independence and Scotland’s public realm.”

      Thanks.

    85. jim mcintosh says:

      Many thanks for that Robin as you say this is just the tip of the iceberg but we need the rest to come out as soon as possible so we can clean up this mess long before the next Scottish elections.

    86. James Carroll says:

      That was a great read. I agree with it wholeheartedly. If we aspire to lead the world into a new socially just era, we must remove the disease at the top of Scotland’s political and legal systems.

      There are so many good people in our movement who will heal the divisions these corrupt charlatans are creating.

      Brothers and sisters, Hail Alba!

    87. Ron Maclean says:

      Don’t say you weren’t warned.

      “If we love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude, than the animating contest of freedom – go from us in peace, we ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly on you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen”.

      Samuel Adams in Philadelphia 1776 in a speech rebuking those who opposed independence for the American Colonies

      Silence gives consent.

    88. Saffron Robe says:

      Thankfully Scotland doesn’t quite fit under a bus although Nicola Sturgeon would throw us all under the bus if she could just to save her own skin.

    89. Liz g says:

      LaingB French @ 10.24
      Don’t forget a written Constitution LaingB , but ill fight ye fur some paragraph breaks in the text of that 🙂
      Seriously… it was quite hard to read your comment because of the way you’ve posted

    90. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “The Lord Advocate is not part of the judiciary rather he is the Scottish government’s chief law officer.”

      He’s both. He’s head of the prosecution service and he’s also a minister in the Scottish Government.

    91. true scott says:

      In my opinion the parliament we have was only conceived for devolution – not for an independent country. We’ve wandered into an almost presidential system without the proper checks and balances – without the proper separation of the civil service and judiciary from government. If we were independent – today, wouldn’t this be the parliamentary system we started off with? I doubt that a newly independant country would have parliamentary reform as it’s top priority. And – yes, with corruption and the abuse of power, where there’s a will there’s a way, always – but too much of this seems to have happened under the cover of darkness and involves multiple agencies. Not to mention a husband and wife team calling the shots. I’m a relative newcomer to WoS – but I don’t see either this level of detail, or moral outrage reflected anywhere else. Like I say – newcomer, here to learn.

    92. Anonster says:

      If you have proof, then you owe it to have it published. Lance the boil – tear off the band aid. Let it be done. You must be able to get it published in a non-attributable form somehow. How can we hope that the cover up won’t succeed? I’m now frightened that this won’t come out and that they’ll get away with it.

    93. Sarah says:

      @ everyone btl: what can we do? Should we all email our MPs and MSPs with a copy of this article and ask for their views?

    94. somerled says:

      When the claims about this conspiracy first surfaced by Craig Murray, Wings and a few others, many thought it was a conspiracy and ridiculed it. The only people still calling it a conspiracy are the hardcore Sturgeon supporters who dont want it to be true because it harms their cause. Little by little the truth is revealed. There has been a massive real conspiracy & cover up by some SNP politicians, some Civil Servants, some Police and some Judiciary.

      Which brings me on to what I believe is a bigger Conspiracy and every bit as real but people still refuse to believe it because of their political bias, and they wont even try and look at the evidence because they don’t want it to be true. The evidence has not yet been shown to a Judge as its been dismissed because they know its true

      Joe Biden & Democrats stole the election- no full audits have taken place.
      Hunter Biden’s laptop is real and has child porn pics and incriminating emails at gtv.org
      The Biden family took bribes from China, Russia and Ukraine.
      The FBI confirmed the raid on Capitol Hill had been planned before Trump spoke
      China has controlling interests in Mainstream Media & Big Tech using censorship

      Look at the 36 page election fraud report by Jovan Hutton Pulitzer.org

      Look at video evidence by anti war author Ryan Dawson at ancreport.com or on Bitchute

      Look at articles by Project Veritas

      These people are only interested in revealing the truth and are not Trump supporters.

      A few weeks ago Craig Murray said he would write about Joe Biden’s corruption if he became President but has not done so yet. It is probably similar to details revealed by Ryan Dawson, another Julian Assange campaigner. I hope Robin and everyone else who cares about democracy, corruption and integrity in Scotland also cares about the same in the USA and don’t dismiss claims a debunked or a conspiracy just because you haven’t seen it on the same biased MSM and or haven’t taken the time to do your own research.

    95. John Digsby says:

      But thank you for your candour and honesty here, Robin.

      Stu: my previous comment seems to have autocompleted a different name. Apologies

    96. Effijy says:

      Anus Sorewar is buming getting the seat already.

      He can bring in some tips from Pakistan where his father is a politician.
      If only he could make Scottish politicians as honest as they are in Pakistan.

    97. Bob Mack says:

      @True Scot,

      Welcome. Not everything is pleasant to the eyes on Wings, but it is honest. The unpleasant truth is printed just as impartially as the comforting fact.

    98. Effijy says:

      Lord Snooty Reece Mogg laughs at our fishermen losing all profits and
      Job thru Brexit announced that the fish are happy with everything as now
      they are British. Ho Ho.

      Who really could vote for this filthy rich Beano character?

    99. Prasad says:

      ‘The only positive I can see in the Salmond stitch up is that’s it is the independence movement that is exposing the goings on.’ (Denise Findlay).

      Very simple but clever quote.
      The NS loyalists are seeing it backwards.

    100. John says:

      Read the article on Mr McAlpine web site, even heard him talk at Oban High School during #IndyRef. Very good speaker and well crafted article. The reason it’s so powerful to me is these are written words which I can relate to from reading many articles on WoS, knowing many ex SNP councillors and ex SNP members,direct dealings with Mike Russell MSP (Education Minister at the time) on a school uniform issue which Argyll & Bute had to concede that the school uniform policy was going against Scottish law. Yes you can break the law, yes you can lie, there are always consequences for your actions. Mr McAlpine got it totally wrong when he was trying to take a statesman’s position and not bring personalities into play, anyone within the SNP party who knew what they were doing to Alex Salmond should of stood up there and then. None of them are fit persons to hold office, either resign or get booted out, every extra day they stay in office they contaminate anyone who will work with them, the other people need to refuse to work with them or accept the guilt too and go.

    101. James Munro says:

      Boy, if I was a unionist I’d be opening the champagne having read this article. As usual, the Scottish left wing are destroying themselves from the inside and will kill off any chance of Independence for a generation, if not for forever.
      This case absolutely stinks, and I am in no doubt that all of the shenanigans will rightly come to light.
      Oh well I suppose I’ll just have to put up with being dictated to from Westminster forever more and watch the smug disaster capitalists making more money as poverty increases.

      Question:
      Would you rather live in a not so perfect Independent Scotland or an even less perfect UK?

    102. Alison Brown says:

      Wow – just wow!! Yes I so agree.

    103. Saffron Robe says:

      Just as Mahadeva (Lord Shiva) destroys the universe and the evil within it so that life and birth can be recreated, perhaps it is best that we build a new Scotland from the ground up. In this sense destruction (of the corruption in our midst) is not arbitrary but constructive.

    104. So it looks like Westminster will shortly be handed a final reason to shut down Holyrood. Why persist with something when we’re obviously not grown up enough to play with it? Combine that with the Covid emergency, the Brexit disaster and the feeling that will no doubt soon be rife amongst the general public that “these bstrds are all the same” and independence is further away than at any point since 1707.

      I still don’t get the motivation behind it all though. Alex Salmond was out of front-line politics. What possible upside could there have been?

      Give the lady her due. She must be pretty fit to screw an entire country.

    105. Bob Mack says:

      @James Munro,

      “Not so perfect Scotland ?” . I could also move house to Zimbanbwe or any number of countries could I live with the effects of corruption.

      I always thought we were trying to create something better. Better than Westminster at least. Would you like to live in an Independent Scotland where Mugabe was the FM?

    106. Thomas Potter says:

      What’s the odds on Sturgeon making it to Monday?

    107. WhoRattledYourCage says:

      I don’t understand why people keep talking aboot American politics here,s if you can draw useful comparisons. They have nothing to do with Scotland, thankfully. And the Democrats are going to use that deranged Capitol protest to crack down on civil liberties and the opposition, have started that already, so I wouldn’t go hailing those hateful cunts as America’s saviours, either. Quite the opposite, but as this is aboot Scottish politics I will say no more on that psychotic, lost side of the Atlantic and their own insoluble gunsoaked madness.

    108. Terry says:

      I’m shell shocked. I think it’s the fact that this is by Robin who (no offence to you Stu) has given talks up and down Scotland which most have us have attended – and of course his work with Common Weal.

      This is Scotland’s Watergate and Wings is the Washington Post. Sadly we all know who Tricky Dicky is. What a hellish nightmare Alex Salmond has gone through.

      The time to save Scotland is running out and if there was one shred of decency left in Nicola and Peter who take in £250,000 a year between them (multiply that by several years and its millions) all on the back of Scottish independence – well they would go now. Usually these types cling on like limits though.

    109. Liz says:

      Wow, thanks Mr McAlpine.

      I’ve been thinking what to say, but I have no words.
      How could this have happened?

    110. Captain Yossarian says:

      They say that Cherry and Sturgeon cannot stand each other and when one walks into the room, the other immediately walks out of that room. So, the enmity is pretty bad.

      Cherry therefore sounds like the best bet at the moment. She would be just the sort of character to purge the grotesque and malfeasant bitches from Holyrood and Victoria Quay.

      The legal profession in Scotland are now in a position of such melt-down that James Wolffe will just disappear. I’m sure of that.

    111. David Holden says:

      May as well take down the blog as Bella Caledonia does not like it. I wonder if it is the content or where it is published that irks small Mike ?

    112. Elmac says:

      Re Saffron Robe 10.53pm

      Looks like you may be right. Either the corruption in the SNP is lanced now or our votes should be transferred to a party which puts independence first. ISP seems an obvious choice but might need some big hitters on board first to be credible.

      One thing for sure is that continuing to vote for SNP in its current form is evidence of madness. As they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result – in this case voting for a Surgeon led SNP and expecting a referendum.

    113. DaveL says:

      I’d like to see them all in the jail, the politicos civil servants and the alphabet women. The whole conspiracy was pegged on them, they were being used and they knew it and yet did nothing to stop it, they went along with it and concocted heinous, evil lies in order for it to work.

      Also the Lord Advocate, I’ve wondered often how the hell’s he still there, by his own admission he’s a criminal and his malicious prosecutions should have seen him finished. But no, there he sits still working, still scheming.

      For me they can all rot and I curse the lot of them.

      Of the other MSPs, I cannot believe they were not aware of this stitch up, they should rightly be condemned for their silence. They too are complicit and deserve emptying out.

      Now I’ve got that out the way on a lighter note, I’d like to say thanks Morgatron. Your comment on the Peter Pickle thread re ‘He could chew a carrot through a letter box with those gnashers’ has given me loads of laugh out louds everytime I think of it. Fuckin classic man! Cheers.

    114. TruthForDummies says:

      @Captain Yossarian
      I think Cherry probably knows the full story I’m her Facebook friend and she’s always kept a picture of her and Alex as her banner. It will be why she hates Nicola

    115. Sharny Dubs says:

      Wonderful piece Robin, I don’t know you from Adam but what you have written I believe most of us knew we just needed to see it detailed and laid out.

      Thank you.

      I’d just like to add one thing. I believe we are arriving at a “Wikipedia” moment and I think we should contemplate Iceland’s similar wikipedia moment. When they found their politicians and bankers to be corrupt embezzlers. Bankrupt and with the rot going all the way to the highest office.
      What did they do? They rolled up their sleeves and got on with it. Most of the culprits are languishing in jail now I believe, and Iceland back on its feet.
      If we ever want to be an independent nation, this is such a time, this is the moment to stand for what we should and will be.

      Thank you again Robin

    116. Helen Yates says:

      I think everything that has needed saying about this shambles has been said by both yourself Stu and now Robin with this excellent piece, for the life of me I can’t understand why others in the party who are serious independence supporters haven’t spoken out or indeed challenged Nicolas leadership, they have to see the damage that is being done to the party itself.
      She doesn’t have the integrity to stand down and I fear she’s going to survive this enquiry and if she does then we can forget about independence.
      Who could have imagined even 4 yrs ago that we would ever be in this position and at this crucial time in our fight for independence.
      It’s so demoralising.

    117. Saffron Robe says:

      Remember when we were wee and we were taught that we should always be good and do the right thing because good triumphs over evil and the good guys always win in the end?

      Well, Nicola Sturgeon and all those who are in league with her stand for the opposite of that.

    118. Ian McCubbin says:

      Thank you, there is honour if NS takes your suggestions and goes now.

    119. Captain Yossarian says:

      I think the inquiry at Holyrood is largely redundant now. Who cares? It was going nowhere anyway. With old Jackie Baillie, Linda Fabiani, Cole- Hamilton and Frazer is was always going to be a pedestrian affair. A cover-up. A whitewash.

      No – the proletariat now have all the information they need. Jackie can stay at home and get-on with her knitting. The worthies of Holyrood can sort themselves out. This isn’t just an SNP problem. If this forum knew all about it, is anyone telling me that Holyrood knew nothing about it?

    120. TruthForDummies says:

      Sturgeon conspired with the British civil service to fit up the former FM.
      The Brits have so much on her. They can destroy her anytime they want. They can charge her with contempt or perverting the course of justice, or just supply the msm with material and set them on her.

      We see now why the msm has been so disinterested the Brits want to keep her in place we also see why she hasn’t and never will make any progress to independence
      She is under control of the British state.

    121. holymacmoses says:

      More than Nicola Sturgeon resigning, I want her to tell the truth about Mr Salmond and I want all those who have been implicated in the mess to come clean. Like Mr McAlpine, I am not the person to ask them to resign – that’s up to them.

    122. Captain Yossarian says:

      When there is a suspicion that a crime has been committed, then it is a Police led Inquiry that is required. Think of the Grenfell Inquiry. for example.

      Wind-up this Holyrood Inquiry. Who cares whether Peter Murrell can use WhatsApp, does use WhatsApp or did use WhatsApp. Who wants to see Lesley Evans again…..not me anyway.

      Call in Police Scotland. We’ll see if that tool Livingstone can do anything right.

    123. Papko says:

      “It is almost explicitly to say that you are content for a new Scotland to be born from corruption, so long as it is born. But I can’t tell you how much of a mistake that is – there is no redemption for us from such a stance. Our future, our nation must be born from honesty and integrity or you should want no part of it. I certainly don’t.”

      As someone who voted NO in 2014 I can appreciate how difficult that must be for Robin to write.

      Many NO voters spoke of a distinct unease with the blind conviction of the YES side and now it has been unbound and laid for all to see.
      Compared to Wishart and the Sturgeon Cabal, the old Etonians seem positively benign in there governance.

    124. Alf Baird says:

      This is a truly majestic piece of writing, Robin, truly wonderful, and all of which I agree with. Thank you. And thanks to Rev Stu for allowing your careful and considered analysis to be aired here, for the benefit of all who value integrity, trust, democracy, and liberty from oppression for the Scottish people.

    125. boris says:

      Ms Evans was at pains in a series of “testy” answers to questions asked of her by Inquiry members focusing on employment and discipline, that civil servants were her responsibility and accountable, through her to the Cabinet Secretary in London.

      Civil servants are therefore employed by the “Crown”. There are no Scottish civil servants and this leads to the conclusion that there is one single set of rules and regulations pertaining to employment law and terms and conditions of employment for all civil servants and any procedural changes, such as the draft produced by James Hynd, Head of Cabinet, Parliament, and Governance, would need to be approved by the Cabinet Secretary in London.

      Confirmation of the need for the Cabinet Secretary in London to approve procedural changes was confirmed when Ms Evans allegedly drafted and sent a letter, around 8 Nov 2017, to the Cabinet Secretary in London outlining the nature and scope of Mr Hynd’s draft proposals for procedural changes to the civil service code for the handling of sexual harassment complaints.

      In reply, an as yet unidentified senior civil servant in the Cabinet Office in London, replied to say that the Cabinet Office was “very uncomfortable to be highlighting a process for complaints about Ministers and former ministers”.

      https://caltonjock.com/2021/01/14/committee-on-the-scottish-government-handling-of-harassment-complaints-ms-evans-permanent-secretary-attendance-12-jan-2021/

    126. Tom says:

      The SNP needs its own Geoffrey Howe (who brought on Thatcher’s resignation by his own Commons resignation a few weeks previously).

      Many MPs and MSPs will be quietly horrified at all this political corruption. But is there just one brave and principled enough to stand up in either parliament and bring it to an end?

      The sooner this is over and done with, the better; for the SNP, for the Scottish government, and independence.

    127. Nell G says:

      An excellent piece and I only hope more ‘big hitters’ now come forward and do the right thing. I wonder if Alex knew he didn’t even have to attend the inquiry next week as the demise of Sturgeon is imminent. Let’s hope it doesn’t stop there as we need a complete clear out. This could provide a very good opportunity at the same time if the movement takes the bull by the horns.

    128. auld highlander says:

      This is all so hurtful and to think we trusted them.

    129. MaggieC says:

      Robin McAlpine ,

      Thank you for this article and it explains clearly exactly how many of us are feeling right now .

      Rev Stuart ,

      Thank you for all honesty and integrity in reporting how all of this has come about .
      .

      Nicola Sturgeon and all who are involved in the conspiracy to send Alex Salmond to jail for the rest of life should be charged and prosecuted for their part in it .

    130. Peter Hurrell says:

      Stunning, simply stunning.

    131. Gfaetheblock says:

      Robin, you state

      ‘ It is worth adding that he was not acquitted because his actions were “dodgy” yet failed to meet the threshold of criminality but because the jury believed his defence that none of them happened.’

      How can you know that, unless you have spoken to each juror about their rational about each and every charge? Odd that was one was not proven if they all believed none of them happened, why an outlier?

      I have no reason to doubt the verdicts but don’t understand your logic here.

    132. Elmac says:

      What a strange world. When AS stepped down in 2014 Many of us were seeing NS for the first time and felt for her as a poor wee lassie plunged in at the deep end. She had a honeymoon period during which SNP membership and national sentiments were soaring as people began to realise that the infamous vow, which had a major effect on the referendum vote, was a lie. After the 2015 general election when a record number of Scots MPs sat in Westminster she was in pole position to push us on to independence but she did not move a muscle. Neither did she move a muscle when subsequent Holyrood and Westminster elections returned huge pro Indy majorities. Why?

      It now appears that she may have conspired with Lesley Evans and others to have Alex Salmond convicted of spurious sex offences in order to avoid his possible return to the independence stage. Why?

      The conclusion to draw is that NS does not want independence. Again why? There appear to be two potential reasons:

      1. Together with her husband they are financially well off with the status quo and would not want to jeopardise their generous salaries, expenses and travel budgets through Scottish independence.

      2. She has sold her soul to the devil and agreed not to rock the UK boat in return for Westminster support in procuring a prestigious post with such as the UN when she finally moves on.

      Either way she is a disgrace to this nation and an impediment to independence which must be removed. Any decent politician would already have stepped down given the ample evidence of lies and obfuscation in her dealings with the ongoing Scottish Parliamentary Enquiry. In a decent society Sturgeon, Swinney, Evans et al would be facing jail time. For the moment I would accept her departure but would prefer incarceration – some hope as the Judiciary and Police are in their thrall.

      The only way we can stop this and what De Pfeffel has planned for us is at the ballot box. Vote SNP 1 and alternative Indy party 2 if Sturgeon and her cabal are gone by the next election, otherwise it has to be alternative Indy parties 1 and 2. To vote SNP under the current leadership is a wasted vote.

    133. Breeks says:

      Fine words Robin McAlpine, but I hope you will allow me to take exception to one thing…

      “…It is not about contentious political issues such as independence…”

      Sorry, but I believe it absolutely is.

      I believe it is impossible to divorce the gross impropriety of the personal misconduct which is finally emerging, with the spectacularly dismal and catastrophic failure of Scotland’s “Government” to lift as much as one finger to defend Scotland’s Sovereign Constitution and the popular sovereignty of the people, and defend our rights from the subjugation and colonial assault of Brexit.

      Every instinct I have, warns me that the malicious treatment of Alex Salmond, grotesque as it is, might yet be dwarfed by the gravest injustice and unconstitutional sell-out suffered upon our Nation.

      I have asked repeatedly why Scotland did not secure for itself a Constitutional Backstop derived from Brexit and Scotland’s subjugation constituting an irremediable breach of the Treaty of Union, a bipartite Treaty between sovereign equals. It is not a rhetorical question. We should demand an answer to this question, on pain of impeachment for the gross dereliction of responsibility which I passionately believe it was.

      In essence, the Northern Irish backstop, which held Westminster to account over the wilful breach of the Good Friday Agreement, provides indisputable PROOF a parallel strategy would have worked for Scotland as it worked for Northern Ireland, saving Scotland from unlawful colonial subjugation and keeping us in Europe.

      Yet throughout, under Sturgeon’s truly dismal ‘leadership’ and desperate strategic inadequacies, Scotland suffered the erosion of our Constitution, with Scotland’s popular sovereignty overridden by a despot in Holyrood, who then conceded to Westminster the effective constitutional veto of a Section 30 Agreement, and of course, the grinding humiliation of Brexit itself.

      When this dreadful sequence of events and grubby misconduct is finally dragged kicking and screaming into the light, let us be sure that the gross Constitutional injustices enacted against our Nation remain firmly on the Charge Sheet, and the bizarre and incomprehensible strategy which circumvented Scotland’s Constitutional defence mechanisms is subjected to equally rigorous scrutiny.

    134. TenaciousV says:

      A impersonal, adult, calm bit of writing here.
      A lot of questions still to be answered before we build the Gallows though.
      I had argued with others that this Sex Scandal was an attempt to make AS go away, for good. Making it an internal sex harassment investigation with threat of it going public.(I suspect the recently returned to WM Tory Rape MP was silenced with same weapon) The ‘victims’ were assured their ‘complaints’ under promise of anonymity & it would stay in house, and AS would go quietly. AYE RIGHT! They underestimate the mans experience & intellect. He smelt the rot long ago. IF NS was behind it, what part, all of it? The idea & target, failing to stop the investigation once told it was illegal or the sending to Police & leaking to press? Some or all of the above? Stand by yer man Hilary? Was Clinton’s case also honey trap? The cover ups were to cover up her stupidity in getting drawn into it or to protect someone else?
      I understood it was Hynd who came up with the Ex Ministers to be included thing back in 2017, not NS idea? AS says ‘There was no public or parliamentary record of it ever being adopted’. So how was it ‘signed off by NS’ and used against him? Read the trail here > https://www.parliament.scot/HarassmentComplaintsCommittee/Phase1FN10(3).pdf

      Whatever happens I hope people do not tar the entire party with the same brush as those who work for the British State! IF we do not keep a Scottish registered Pro Indy party in power we will lose power if not the whole Parliament..AGAIN! It will be easier to remove them if we are independent no matter who they work for. If still in the union we are F*CKED!

    135. Breeks says:

      And just to add, the primary significance of staying in Europe would not have been staying Europe, but rendering the 1707 Treaty of Union untenable, whereupon the United Kingdom would cease to exist.

      A Scottish Backstop would SURELY have made Scottish Independence inevitable and unavoidable.

    136. Big Jock says:

      She clearly has no moral compass,so I don’t expect she will resign.

      Indeed her absence from Indy marches and the grassroots.Suggests she cares not a not about us or the movement, only her own pr.

      My question in all of this is why? What motivated her to stitch up her old boss and mentor. That part suggests to me she has been promised something from WM, or is working for them. Who knows!

    137. Corrado Mella says:

      I can only watch my predictions unfold in horror.

      I told you, over a year ago, that Sturgeon was a hindrance and a risk that had to be removed to reach our independence goal.

      Now she’s a ticking time bomb and the detonator is in the hands of the BritNazi Establishment.

      Wait for the right moment in the May 21 Holyrood campaign, flick the switch and see the SNP detonate on itself.

      We must defuse the bomb before it’s too late.
      If that means a controlled explosion, so be it.

      An interim leader and First Minister from now to May, given that policy is mostly dictated by SAGE medical advice, little else is being done, and SG approval rates are good, would not influence the outcome too much.

      Better come clean now and get the house in order before May.

      And don’t forget that if push comes to shove, and the SNP implodes, there are already other Scottish parties that can welcome good ‘uns leaving the sinking ship.

      We vote for people, not parties.
      When someone is rotten, the party no longer matters.

      Nicola and her woke cabal must resign now.
      They must.
      Time to let her know, in no uncertain terms.

      If what she really wants is Scottish Independence, she will go.
      If she resists, she’s actively destroying our best opportunity ever, and we must act to take her down.

      I will make my feelings known at my branch. Time to act.

    138. Big Jock says:

      Truth for dummies- I concur. Everything Sturgeon does suggests she is being manipulated by the UK. The press have been told not too touch her for the last 2 years.

      It explains her telling the world the section 30 was the only game in town. By doing so she hands power to London.

    139. Elmac says:

      RE Tenacious @ 11.56pm

      In the same spirit as your post. If we vote SNP under Sturgeon at the next HR election we are F*CKED. She has made it plain there will never be another referendum under her watch. The S30 charade with Johnson does not wash any more. If she is not kicked out pronto we have to start again with another party. It’s Hobsons choice – vote SNP under Sturgeon and never be independent or vote for another party and have a chance even if it is slim.

    140. Liz says:

      Mc Duff says:
      14 January, 2021 at 10:16 pm

      What isn’t explained is Sturgeon turning her back on independence on becoming FM.

      I think the power of being FM corrupted. I also think she is out of her depth in terms of planning a strategy and taking the fight on.

      Slightly OT. The first Citizen’s Assembly of Scotland report is out. https://citizensassembly.theapsgroup.scot/report/

      One of the key visions agreed was for ‘Scotland to lead with integrity, honesty, humility and transparency…’.

      Something we are very far away from right now. I’m not sure how much chance we have of seeing some or even any of the recommendations made actually being acted on but there is certainly a need to do some ‘clearing out’ first or we fall at the first hurdle.

    141. Neil in Glasgow says:

      Excellent piece, eloquently put. I’m far too young but any historians out there know how long it took for watergate to actually play out? Seen the film obviously, but suppose my real question is if nixon’s popularity was so high was it an instant thing or did it take a bit of time for the penny to drop amongst other journos to pile on? I know it was a bit different in terms of there being no major Yoon interest but surely all it takes is for one ambitious journo/editor to stake their claim as being the guy/gal
      who brought down a corrupt government (with more than a little help from you know stu) and all the fame that would bring?

      Slightly aside, but I’ve always thought that an ‘independent’ Labour Party would fly. The timing of Randy lovehard (I suspect that’s probably most ironic thing I’ll ever type but who knows?) today couldn’t have presented them with a more opportunistic time to go soft on independence. The names in the hat though fill you with no confidence on that front and if anyone ever needed any more evidence that they’re no more than a branch for London who they need to prop them up you have it right there. Union before socialism. I’m not hard left but that disgusts me.

    142. Elmac says:

      Re Neil in Glasgow

      A change in SLAB leadership with a shift to an Indy platform could pull back some voters but I think memories are not that short and not many would return. Besides Starmer is an avowed Unionist and would block any such policy change by his Scottish branch.

      We are stuck with the SNP for the time being. The hope would be that post independence we would see the rise of truly Scottish equivalents of Labour, Conservative and Liberal elements with possibly the SNP surviving as a rump party but all of them pro national. I live in hope.

    143. Neil in Glasgow says:

      Elmac

      Very good points. I’ve also been told that SLab actively make it a point to weed out any of us pesky prospective nationalists in their vetting process so it’s almost 100% unlikely to happen because any candidate of that ilk just doesn’t exist. If we do manage to make it the other side then we’ll be full of new, distinct parties I reckon, on both sides of the spectrum but Labour will just end up being white noise (a bit like now then!). Suppose what I was trying to suggest was in an ideal world (ha ha!), and probably should have specified if SLab embraced independence as something that might happen if not wholy supportive of it rather than just completely shut it down as a theory, this could have been the last credible chance of them bringing themselves back from the brink. I have no sympathy though. Oddly enough.

    144. susanXX says:

      Thank you Stu for hosting Robin’s post.

      You are quite right Robin, we cannot build an independent Scotland on all this corruption. Aside from that AS scandal the thing that alerted me was the duplicitous way they have tried to pass unpopular legislation. Dodgy consultations, open to the world, using govt funded NGOs to support these initiatives, then ignoring these consultations where necessary. Not the actions of a democracy.

    145. Josef Ó Luain says:

      The whole Party, from the head down, now lies irrevocably rotted.There is nothing to be salvaged that isn’t infected by silence or fear.

      Despite being forced to write the above, I don’t accept for one moment that the spirit of Scottish independence has been corrupted in any way by the criminals who have shamelessly used its name since 2014 to furnish their own despicable ends.

      I’m glad that you’ve finally shared your thoughts and your obvious hurt and disgust with us, Robin.

    146. robertknight says:

      Thanks Robin.

      Thanks Rev.

      It is sadly as we feared. However, the first step in resolving a problem is acknowledging that one exists.

      Hopefully those in the cult of Nicola will be more willing to acknowledge that she is the problem.

    147. David R says:

      Thanks Robin. The fact that so many pro indy supporters are willing to ignore the corruption in government and the party for the sake of independence is as worrying as the arrogance of the Scottish government and Party officials.

    148. TJenny says:

      Does anyone remember Nicola’s interview (May 2019), where she admitted to having Imposter Syndrome? What a Freudian slip.

      When peope show you who they are, believe them.

    149. IWhoRattledYourCage says:

      TJenny: interesting. Never heard of ‘imposter syndrome’ before. Scared she’ll be caught out, eh? Ironic. As is her equating herself with working class women in the piece below; again. She’s playing the poor, put-upon female victim to the hilt here. Working class women don’t do that, they’re far stronger.

      https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/women/nicola-sturgeon-imposter-syndrome-snp-leader-women-a8914871.html?amp

    150. TJenny says:

      crazycat – Did you also get that wee sinking feeling when you read/heard it, but brushed it aside, thinking how refreshing to hear a politician being so frank? She surely took us all for fools,eh.

    151. Graeme Hampton says:

      Like Watergate it’s not the original crime but the cover up that will do the most damage in the end. How much damage this will do the independence movement is hard to quantify but will be largely down to how the FM leaves office and that gives every indication of going badly after a vote in Parliament.

      The Watergate scandal only involved politicians and advisors, here the actual Justice system is involved. Is this the reason for the light touch reporting by the msm? The only corrective action can be to remove the Lord Advocate from cabinet.

      Thank you Robin.

      My faith in independence being the right course is unshakable but these issues must be addressed. That people like Robin and Stu shine a light on such things is a hugely positive thing we should not forget. Neither should we forget that there are people of integrity ready to fill the void when the real miscreants are forced out.

    152. Davie Oga says:

      We can see what they’ve done in order to cover up and remain in power. What’s next
      killing people? Why not?

      No constraints on the sainted ones regime.
      Silence in the party but for very few exceptions. Disturbing.

      I’ve supported independence my entire adult life, but I couldn’t in good conscience falicitate the transfer of further power to these cretins. They have made me question the viability of Scotland as a state.

      All countries have corruption, and bad ones sleep through the net, but decent civil society removes these people from power. If the best That the SNP can come with is, “well she’s popular” they deserve everything that’s coming.

      Come it will.

    153. twathater says:

      Well done Stu for being the one to lead with these exposures and the TRUTH , now our naysayers and Sturgeon apologists have an additional target to focus on , decry , besmirch and denigrate

      Also thank you Robin for your honesty and integrity in putting down in words on this website what many of us have been exposing and fighting against

      I agree completely with your statement that honesty and integrity MUST be at the forefront of our independence , but unfortunately I disagree with your assertion that “The vast majority of the SNP’s politicians are good and honest people who had nothing whatsoever to do with this” they may NOT have played an active part BUT they allowed it to go on without EXPOSING what was being done to an innocent man and to the future of independence

      There are MANY people who have become whistleblowers to expose corruption and amoral deeds perpetrated on citizens and have risked ALL to do so , and to imply that all our representatives were unaware of what was going on and the damage it would do to our independence dreams is naive and insulting

      It has been asked on many occasions why so many SNP reps are retiring before the next HR election , the answer given is always that they are becoming to old to continue , can the real reason be that they cannot continue to support the endemic corruption of a Sturgeon government and they are too frightened to expose the truth in case they then become targets of the CLIQUE

    154. Kate says:

      I believe every word you wrote Robin, but what I find difficult to accept is, you say, it was almost 2 yrs ago that you sat in a cafe hearing of the PLOT against Alex Salmond. So why did you not come forward as a witness at his trial & enlighten the MSM who were there covering what they hoped was to be him carted off to jail. That you knew for a fact that he was being stitched up. THAT would have had to be written by someone in the MSM surely, or at least raised often enough with them as to why they were not reporting on that fact..

      The quote about Good Men doing nothing, (And I have always thought you were a good decent man) came to my mind on reading just how much you actually knew/KNOW. Yet it took 2 yrs for you to say anything about what you know.

      Alex could have maybe had a less stressful time, maybe even slept easier, knowing that there were GOOD people out there who actually were willing to speak out about what they knew of the scheming of a plot against him.

      I am disappointed that along with those so called GOOD people you say still exist in The SNP Party. Too many of you good people, stood by, heads down, & allowed Alex to endure stress beyond belief for 2 yrs, stress that could have killed him.

      The MURRELS & Evans, along with the other lying civil servants could all have been gone by now, if only those that knew of the truth of this plot, spoke out at the time he was charged.

    155. Fishy Wullie says:

      Ian McCubbin says:
      14 January, 2021 at 11:19 pm

      Thank you, there is honour if NS takes your suggestions and goes now.

      —————————————————————–

      Sadly there is no honour possible now for Nicola Sturgeon it’s gone way beyond that, all that’s left for her now is damage limitation, she is mired in corruption, lies and deceit and all but destroyed the best chance we’ve had for independence in 300 years, she had made a laughing stock of our country and I personally will never forgive her any more than I forgive those who voted NO in 2014.

      She has to go and I don’t care whether she jumps or whether she’s pushed but it has to be soon if we are to salvage anything from the damage she’s done

    156. Mist001 says:

      You know why nobody in the SNP has come out and spoke publicly about this scandal, why they haven’t resigned in protest, why they’ve kept quiet?

      It’s because every single one of them is looking after their own self interests.

      Not one single one of them is prepared to put their country before themselves.

      Not one single one of them is prepared to act for the greater good.

      The SNP is filled with self serving weasels. There are no good members in the SNP because if there were, they’d be coming out and speaking about all this.

      But none have.

    157. christine says:

      Thank you Robin for a very powerful, articulate and disturbing piece. Nicola Sturgeon has been and still is at the dark heart of it all, the driving force behind it. She has shown an utter disregard for the rule of law, justice, fairness and equal respect for all. She has done so unreservedly. She may think she is basking in the “ popularity “ polls but, like Richard Nixon, this can change in a heartbeat.

      Evil has an odour. Once the stench starts blowing into the court of public opinion, her downfall is inevitable, alongside all those who said and did nothing to stop her. Shame on every single one of you. You know who you are.

    158. David F says:

      A message to Ross, before he pops up (yet again) to ask us (yet again) why Sturgeon told an apparently pointless lie about the 29th March/2nd April meetings – and to anyone else who is curious.

      This is the explanation:

      The FM’s goal was to distance herself as far as possible from the AS investigation. But she was under a legal obligation to make a declaration about her contacts and discussions on the matter. The 2nd April meeting was the absolute latest date at which she could plausibly claim to have been made aware of it.

      Although this lie appears stupid and pointless, it would also at the time have appeared to be a zero-risk lie. In June 2018 the investigation was under way. The expectation was that it would end in a finding against AS, that he would thereby be neutered, and that he would disappear with his tail between his legs and never be heard of again.

      There was at that point no reason to imagine that any information about any meeting should ever come into the public domain. As I say, zero-risk.

      And finally, the fact is that Sturgeon knew about the AS affair from November 2017 at the very latest. So the 29th March/2nd April lie was a tiny little lie in a vast sewer of much bigger lies. In June 2018, when the lie was first told, I doubt that either Sturgeon or Liz Lloyd ever gave it so much as a second thought.

    159. Lulu Bells says:

      Back in September 2019 I was in a wee French airport. My husband was talking to a well known Scottish rugby player who he knew from school. I wasn’t really listening but when the chap started to talk about Alex Salmond my ears pricked up. Long story short he believed what he was reading in the msm. I knew nothing at that point, I just knew the internal gubbings of the Scottish Government and I could see so easily that they had gone after Alex Salmond, I knew the words and the terminology and the process and could read them like a book. I knew in my gut too that they were at it. Poor rugby player was put well straight I can tell you.

      Here we are less than 18 months on and it’s all so much worse than I could have imagined at that time. But Robin is right, this is no longer about Alex Salmond, that said he deserves his say and in fact is being pressured to have a say. Should he feel ready to return then I would be so very glad to see him back.

    160. David F says:

      Kate says:
      15 January, 2021 at 5:29 am

      I believe every word you wrote Robin… So why did you not come forward as a witness at his trial & enlighten the MSM who were there covering what they hoped was to be him carted off to jail?

      Kate, you don’t just get to “appoint yourself a witness” at a criminal trial. I am quite certain that if the AS legal team had thought Robin could make any worthwhile contribution to the defence case, they would have called him.

      There are other people – Craig Murray and Rev Stu for example – who have known for a long time much more information than has ever been made public. They weren’t called as witnesses either.

    161. Lulu Bells says:

      Kate @5:29

      I have wondered that too.

    162. Contrary says:

      David F

      Yes, good point to make – that the initial lie by NS was a careless throw-away one that, in her mind, shouldn’t have mattered. In all the morass of revelations we can lose sight of the basics. The original lie was told in June 2018 – before many events took place (before police were involved, before the judicial review, before criminal charges, before criminal trial). It was her doubling down on the original lie that’s really got her in trouble though, why she didn’t change her story once events started moving on, is the most bizarre thing (from the point of view of someone trying to get away with wrongdoing, and someone that’s meant to be politically astute).

      Whether or not the ministerial code inquiry finds that she broke it (don’t see how it can’t) or if she resigns because of it – we know for certain she is a liar – we know she is untrustworthy and has very little (if any) morality – and that most of what she says are political platitudes, not real policy or even her own real belief. Including ‘there should be independence’. How can we ever believe anything she tells us ever again? I can’t anyway. And who wants that level of uncertainty during setting up an independent nation? I don’t.

      NS does not have the political wherewithal, or the desire, to bring about independence. If we want independence in the next 4 years, she needs to go, before the election. I’m trying to think of other points of pressure that can be applied to ensure she is gone – hopefully well before the end of February – can action be started against the government for contempt of court for withholding evidence? And I don’t think enough political pressure is being applied yet – some manoeuvring is happening, but SNP MSPs need to be starting to show dissent and grumbling at the very least – how can those MSPs sit back and watch all this unfold & still be sitting back waiting to see,,, I’m not impressed with any of them. Integrity indeed.

      Robin could have given us some pointers on how a political system could easily be changed from what we have to something that prevents corruption in its ranks – if all it takes is one or two rotten leaders there are huge weaknesses there. How do we start changing it with the least pain possible – a total overhaul will not be possible in the time available, and we need a process that can be done in stages so that we always have representation & the availability to vote. How do we stop this from ever being able to happen again? I think lobbying is a big problem, but how much would that resolve if banned?

      Etc.

    163. Kenny says:

      That is why I think Scotland needs at the same time to rethink democracy. It is bad enough having just Holyrood ruling on devolved issues. A parliament with ONE CHAMBER! No upper chamber to act as any constraint on dictatorial power.

      For example, it might be a good idea in an independent Scotland to have a third chamber above it, a sort of “council” of independent and testy people outside politics. Stu Campbell, Craig Murray, Lesley Riddoch, for example. An equal number from the unionist side or just independents (couple of foreigners?). A council to ask awkward questions and further hold ALL power to account.

      Because things cannot go on as they were. Either the people is sovereign or they are not. I am just one of the small people. But when I wrote to Kenny McAskill as justice secretary about corruption, laying things out in black and white, this was brushed aside. Now he comes onto this site complaining because it is being used against the party he supports (Salmond party).

      But you see what happens? When it is allowed to flourish at the bottom, it flourishes also at the top. How can we allow it to flourish at the bottom, turning a blind eye, and expect the top to be pure?

      Likewise, all the good politicians in the SNP who know about things and knew long before. There are even QCs among them. So you must go to the sovereign people with what you know, even if it means losing your career. Otherwise, you yourself are just part of the system.

    164. Contrary says:

      Lulu Bells & Kate

      Hearsay is inadmissaable in court as far as I know – if you heard about anything second hand it’s just gossip, not evidence.

    165. Contrary says:

      Kenny,

      It has been suggested by some Assembly or other, that we could have an Upper House of Citizens – and since hearing of it I’ve been trying to think of how that would work – you don’t want millions of elections, but you also want people elected, and what kind of citizens would you end up with?

      So I was thinking – what if the citizens upper house (which has a veto on any government proposal) is chosen the same way a jury is chosen? It’s your duty to do this – say for a year term each – you could have change over of half the chamber (make it say a 100-person strong) every six months to keep some continuity. The short term stops people getting embedded, they are citizens so will want what’s best for the country – or their part of it – rather looking after their own power. Choosing juries is an established process so easily applied elsewhere, it just needs a different set of instructions to those serving. There will have be to be laws that the person keeps their job (but will be paid by government for that year), but fairly mundane stuff there and the usual reasoning for juries if you want to wriggle out of it. It will be a national service duty to serve and it oversees everything government does.

      Those are my initial thoughts.

    166. Cath says:

      What isn’t explained is Sturgeon turning her back on independence on becoming FM.

      Did she though? During the referendum campaign she headed up Yes Scotland. It was an entirely useless organisation, which the Indy campaign mostly had to work around and campaign in spite of. We had great resources from places like Wings, including the WBB. YS would every so often send out a totally crap leaflet that said nothing.

    167. Cuilean says:

      The Yanks have a saying, ‘I can walk and chew gum’ i.e. Scotland can fight both the pandemic and political corruption at the same time.

      The British nationalist public media won Indyref1. We know the Britnat propaganda machine went into overdrive, at a level last seen during WW2.

      How do we know this? Well, we lived through it, and we see them re-writing history ever since.

      But they also crowingly admitted to it, from the Head of the British Civil Service, to Blair McDougal, the Head of ‘Better Togeher’, to hacks like Joe Pike (now ‘elevated’ to Murdoch’s SKY), the author of ‘Project Fear’.

      Why, therefore, is the British Establishment and its media so deafeningly silent on the greatest political corruption story in Scotland? Why has the British Establishment media not commented on the First & Deputy Ministers’ corrupt cabal?

      That fact alone tells us that this SNP leadership is on the wrong side of history.

      Footnote: British Nationalism is more accurately English Nationalism, which, in Scotland, has devolved into a breed of English Nationalism + the ‘The Scottish Orange Order Spectrum’.

      ‘The Scottish Orange Order Spectrum’ ranges from its highest ‘vizier’, the uneducated rank & file, the (attack) dog-whistling handlers (e.g. hacks of Euan McColm’s ilk, ‘Queen’s Eleven’ Tory MSPs), right through the Spectrum to even the antithesis of the Orange Order, including George Galloway and the Wee Ginger Dug’s faither.

    168. Donibristle says:

      But there’s still the Why ?
      Why was it so important to keep AS out of Scottish politics ?
      Why did the full power of the SNP,Civil Service,Scottish Judiciary,Police attempt to ruin the reputation and incarcerate one individual?
      Why has the media censored by omission or misreported the case including Murray’s and Hirst’s ?
      Why is AS so dangerous ?
      Why have the highheidyuns of the SNP continued to accuse AS of the crimes he’s been exonerated of?
      Probably because he was and is our road to Independence and there’s a great deal of effort trying to prevent that.
      Even if NS does step down, we have the security services,NATO friendly and WM favourite Angus to contend with.
      Which does lead one to believe that this has been long in the planning.

    169. Breeks says:

      Neil in Glasgow says:

      Slightly aside, but I’ve always thought that an ‘independent’ Labour Party would fly.

      I don’t think it would ‘fly’, but based on her performance at the Sturgeon Inquiry, I think Jackie Baillie has put herself in contention as a credible Leader, but after that, SLAB is still flatlining on the slab.

      If it did turn pro Indy however, when the SNP is suffering convulsions who can predict what would happen? But I’d rather have one honest and good Independence Party starting up from scratch than two dud ones with dismal records of failure who can never be trusted.

      But better, much better than any of that would be for Scotland to do something radical, and break away from the raging house fire of Holyrood, and busy ourselves with the establishment of a Scottish National Assembly, – essentially an alternative to Holyrood, but over which Westminster has absolutely zero control.

      Then use this ‘interim’ or transitional National Assembly to defend Scotland’s Sovereign Constitution on the International stage, and kick start our route to Independence by disputing UK Parliamentary Sovereignty at the UN, and actively seek to curtail Westminster’s power to act in or over Scotland, and challenge all the Constitutional abuses suffered upon Scotland which leave the Treaty of Union torn to shreds and rendered untenable.

      Establishing such an Assembly with the resolute determination it would take, would do so much more for Scotland than simply electing the next Puppet Government to the emasculated unconstitutional non-entity of a Holyrood Assembly which rolls over at Westminster’s command. If Holyrood is designed to be Scotland’s cage, then don’t wander into it in a daze.

      Another option for the May Elections to run beside the Plebiscite option, is to seek a mandate to sit on a Scottish Parliament which sits outside Holyrood, which doesn’t recognise or adopt the Scotland Act as its constitution, but instead represents the Sovereign Constitution of the Scottish People.

      In essence, a Scottish Independence Movement with a clear democratic mandate from our Sovereign people, but which, Sinn Fèin style, doesn’t take it’s seats in either Holyrood or Westminster, but has a mandate to sit instead in a new and alternative ‘Sovereign’ Scottish Government of Transition.

      Such a new National Assembly needn’t even recognise UK Party structures, with all distinctions between Labour, Tory, SNP dispensed with, and “everybody” being an Independent, swearing fealty and allegiance to Scotland’s Sovereign Constitution above all other interests. The vestiges of UK Political Parties could simply be swept away from the outset. Scotland will not suffer that stifling straight jacket any longer.

      Every candidate to this new Scottish National Assembly / Transitional Assembly, would be unified under one banner as a Constitutionalist, rather than a politician, defending Scottish Constitutional Sovereignty. As such, there is no need to recognise any feature or vestige of allegiance to any obsolete UK Parties.

      Domestic politics could all be deferred until after Scotland has survived it’s Constitutional Emergency, secured it’s Constitutional Integrity as a Nation, and then holds truly Scottish Elections to pick a true Scottish Government serving Scotland’s sovereign citizens.

      Start playing by OUR rules, not theirs.

    170. Wee Chid says:

      “It is almost explicitly to say that you are content for a new Scotland to be born from corruption, so long as it is born. But I can’t tell you how much of a mistake that is – there is no redemption for us from such a stance. Our future, our nation must be born from honesty and integrity or you should want no part of it. I certainly don’t.”

      Exactly the point I’ve been trying to make to friends who want me to “Wheesht for Indy”. Thank you for expressing it so eloquently.

    171. Ottomanboi says:

      TRUST…for my post millennial generation is a word written in desert sand.
      The lies, distortions, half truths and globalist rich guys agendas surrounding « the pandemic » (that’s actually more of an aging population, American and European problem) reinforce the notion that being well informed from multiple sources and in a variety of languages is important. English (globish) language media is in my experience the most biased dominated as it is by the Anglo-Saxon media oligarchs who all piss in the same woke shaped pot.
      If there is rot in the state of Scotland, it is decay with a global setting.
      « Independence » is more than just a flag, embassies and a seat in the self styled United Nations.

    172. TD says:

      “Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
      14 January, 2021 at 10:34 pm
      ”The Lord Advocate is not part of the judiciary rather he is the Scottish government”

      He’s both. He’s head of the prosecution service and he’s also a minister in the Scottish Government.“

      But he is not part of the judiciary. The judiciary consists of judges (senators, sheriffs and JPs). The Lord Advocate is not a judge.

    173. Tom Kane says:

      Heart-breaking, Robin. Just heart-breaking. I have been a great admirer of your work and your work-rate… it is mightily impressive. What analytical skills you have. And how inspiring to see them so closely accompanied by such a respectful humanity.

      The integrity of our state instruments must be more important than the people who get to pull their levers.

      Chin up Robin… We know what we are facing … and it’s vicious.

      I would highly recommend reading Brittany Kaiser’s Book – Targeted. What people have been tasked to do to win elections and subvert democracy is breathtaking. And that’s only from 2016.

      And the other, Mindf*ck, by Christopher Wylie. Alistair Carmichael MP comes out of that one surprisingly well, but the whole modern apparatus of the Dominic Cummings comes into sharp focus from that book.

      Here’s the thing Robin. And we know this is happening. There’s still 4 months to the election. We can fix this. Scots are famous for ingenuity the world over. Think about what Lachlan MacQuarie did for Australia. We have brilliant people here… and you’re one of them… and this is your milleu.

      Respect. And Stu… respect too.

    174. NellG says:

      My message to those within the SNP who do have detailed information on this plot or the shenanigans of the inner circle would be to break ranks and come forward now. If you intend on having a career after this all explodes you need to make sure you have favour with the Independence movement. If you decide to go down with the ship then that’s your prerogative but the ship is sinking and sinking fast. You are 2 years too late but better late than never; those with strong foundations will survive and the weak will be swept aside.

      We all know you know so do the right thing for once, it will all come out in the wash eventually and Scotland needs a hero or two in these dark times.

    175. Alexander Wallace says:

      In an Independent Scotland we must legislate to never allow politicians to hide behind the privilege of legal advice.

    176. Footsoldier says:

      Who would be the new leader commanding the popularity Nicola Sturgeon currently enjoys and in time for the election in around 16 weeks time?

      Of course if you wish to emulate Labour gety rid of her before the election.

    177. Willie says:

      Robin McAlpine’s piece reflects so much of what so many of us think.

      A rotten state is a rotten state and there can be few independence supporters who have the dream of creating a rotten state.

      But that is what we do when we support governments like Nicola Sturgeon.

      Illegality, unfairness, abuse is like a drug. Do it once, do it again and it becomes the norm.

      This government under Sturgeon, but not just Sturgeon is corrupt and the mechanisms of state are corrupt.

      Decent ordinary folks can not therefore vote for this. At least now, through the exposure of what has been going on ordinary folks, but not all folks are beginning to see what has been going on.

      The SNP under it current leadership, current trajectory is something that no sane person could vote for. A country without a rule of law, run by criminals who would use the powers of state to persecute.

      Not the Scotland I want!

    178. gullaneno4 says:

      Why do some posters on here not understand the dynamics that is going on in Scotland at the moment.
      We are in the driving seat to gain independence, we have never been so close. Hold steady, keep on doing the same things and we shall win, it may take a few years but it will mean a life time for my grandchildren to live in a free country.
      ONCE we have won we then take stock of what kind of Scotland we ALL want to live in. Not now, now is the time for the divided factions to work together.
      A Question for the folk on here who will not vote for the SNP in the next election. Do you think that a hung Parliament will further the cause of Independence.
      A hung 2021 Parliament will mean that we will not achieve independence within the next 10 to 20 year, perhaps never
      As I have said before on here this is our eve of Flodden Field.
      Will we unite and win or will we do as the clan chiefs did and argue with each other over who gets the power and let the weaker enemy win the day.

    179. Maolbeatha says:

      An uncomfortable, depressing read.

      Am I understanding the article correctly? In that the whole thing kicked off because “the politician” held a meeting that was not recorded in the correct manner and targeting another politician was a deflection of the attention from that act?

      Is that where the motivation came from?
      To jail someone to save their job?
      That is incredible.

      Or did the conspiracy to get rid of AS come before the meeting?
      If that is so what go after AS?

      With Westminster in such disarray , with the polls so favourable, with the noises from Europe so positive, this couldn’t come at a worse time this will likely turn off so many, newly aligned, from Independence. Our opponents at their weakest ready to lose, and are we again about to steal defeat from the jaws of victory?

      Confidence in the only party acting for, or capable of gaining independence will be diminished by this.

      I can understand the thinking of “forgive all to gain our goal” I can understand where that could lead. Yet I cannot help feeling this is the best chance we have ever had to gain our Independence and we are about to throw it away, because of the actions of a group of our own.

      Kind of makes me think I will never see an Independent Scotland in my lifetime.
      I resigned from the SNP a few months back. I got, what I presumed to be a standard email response asking why. I said, the direction of the NEC, apparent lack of progress towards Indy2 and what they had done to AS.
      The email said it was from P. Murrell (standard template no doubt) given how it looks, and his close involvement with all this, if he did see it, it may have been well aimed.
      I was thinking that with the clear out in the NEC things might be better, salvageable, and I would re-join but this…

      Damn.

      Sad, confused, disbelieving, denial, frustrated, not angry, not yet anyway. Sick.

    180. Yasmin says:

      I knew the party was in trouble when blackman, blackford, Freeman, Evans, wishart, m black et al were allowed in

    181. Yasmin says:

      It’s interesting this has happened with a cabal of women playing leading roles in government. It’s never a great idea to bolster gender equality for the sake of it.

    182. Mia says:

      “Why is AS so dangerous?”

      Because you quite confidently could say that he was the only truly non-establishment politician Scotland (the UK?) has ever seen. Because he is unpredictable, resourceful, eloquent, brave, liked and a very, very astute tactician and difficult to bribe. Because unless they fabricate the charges, in all these years he has been in politics they could never find any skeleton in the closet to beat him with. But more importantly, because he does not tow their line.

      Had Mr Salmond been in any position of control in the SNP from 2017 to today instead of the present fraud, there is no way they would have got away with the power and asset theft as they did and with the subjugation of our sovereignty. That is why they had to keep him away and seemingly, Sturgeon, the best British establishment lapdog to date, was only happy to help.

      If you put on a straight line every event date (and I am including here events before GE2017), you can see that the sht really hit the fan around the time the man had the audacity to join RT. Not only he was staunch anti-establishment, that now had got for himself a broadcasting platform with a free editorial licence where the establishment could not stick its fingers to control the narrative. The only way to do so was by threatening to close the broadcaster in the UK, which they did, or removing Mr Salmond from the programme, which they have been trying ever since. I wouldn’t be surprised if some USA elements were not involved in the move to remove Salmond out of RT. Remember “All the jolly boys and girls”

      By choosing RT, Mr Salmond was openly undermining the main propaganda line of the British and USA establishments that Russia is the bogeyman and anything to do with Russia, particularly its broadcaster whose narrative the UK and USA cannot control, the cause of every evil.

      Remember at the time of the nerve gas thingy how quickly some stooges in the SNP jumped to join the British establishment condemning Russia for the attacks even before we actually saw proof of it? Remember how we have on a day to day basis now elements of the SNP desperately attempting to smear Mr Salmond?

      Just look back in time to every article published in the press. The obsession of every possible establishment figure with a functioning mouth and anything similar to a pulse was wheeled out to complain about Mr Salmond’s programme in RT. Wasn’t his contract with LBC for his radio programme terminated because of his RT programme? Wasn’t RT’s own licence even attempted to be taken away with the excuse of the nerve gas thing? Even Sturgeon for goodness sake had to come out like a good Westminster lapdog on the 10th November 2017 to cricitise him publicly. And she was not the only SNP one to do so.

      Look at the time line of events and you will see that his RT programme is a the heart of the acceleration process to remove him from public life. Still today, the establishment useful idiots continue to criticise him.

      I am convinced that the idea of stopping him returning to politics was concocted well before the GE 2017. But the moment they learnt he would join RT, it became a matter of urgency that he had to be ejected from any form of public life.

      Anybody knows when was it known for first time that Mr Salmond would/could have his programme in RT? I am not referring to when this was announced publicly by RT, which was the 9th November 2017. I mean when the political circles both in Westminster and Scotland knew/suspected he would have this programme? I would not be surprised if the RT thing was the actual trigger of the “need” to include former ministers in the complaints procedure.

      Just for reference, by 7th November 2017 and judging by Ms Lloyd’s submission to the inquiry, there was already a draft for the complaints procedure titled: “Handling of sexual harassment complaints against former ministers”. It was only later, that the “current ministers bit was included in the policy”. Here is a section from Ms Lloyd’s submission:

      ” the committee should also be aware of the first draft of the policy by James Hynd on the 7th November 2017 [XX06], titled “Handling of sexual harassment complaints against former ministers” which was not shared with me and a subsequent draft shared with me on the 17th November 2017 titled “Handling of sexual harassment complaints involving current or former
      ministers”6 [FP23XX011]. I did not have sight of the draft policy prior to the 17th November 2017.
      The inclusion of current ministers in the draft policy shared with me on the 17th November created an interaction with the ministerial code for which the First Minister is responsible…”

      From the email sent by Hynd to the Uk cabinet office on 16 Nov 2017, it is clear that their main horse battle was the inclusion of former ministers:

      “As we have just briefly discussed, I attach a draft paper setting out the process to be
      followed in the event that we receive a complaint of sexual harassment against a
      former Minister. (For completeness, the draft also describes the process for dealing
      with a complaint against a current Minister.)”

      From that email exchange, it was evident they did not have anything remotely similar in UKcabinet office and even the scottish government did not have a similar policy to catch former civil servants. So what brought the urgent need for a policy against former ministers that could not be charged under the current ministerial code?

      From the emails backwards and forwards between Mackinnon and Richards and others, it is evident that there was “no locus to take action under the ministerial code against a former minister” and they did not have a clue either who should be interviewing the former minister not what action/punishment to implement, particularly if the former minister chose to non cooperate. They were wondering if the former minister was a member of the governing party if action could be taken at party level. And here, in my opinion lies the root for the blurring of lines between government and SNP matters that they have been trying to feed us with ever since.
      The question remains that if the former ministers were not covered by the ministerial code, if they could choose to non-cooperate, they did not know who should be interviewing them if they were no longer part of government and if they have to move what is government matters to become party matters in order for them to even have an option to “punish”, what could possibly move them to pursue such a dodgy road?

      That there was a concerted attempt to remove this man not only from politics but from any form of public life where he had an audience, I have not doubt. That Sturgeon was right at the center of it in Scotland I have not doubt either. What I am not sure is the degree of influence/intervention of Westminster on this. But that there had to be some, I have not doubt either, because judging by the spectacular level of incompetence displayed during this process, these people could not come up with all this by themselves. Besides, from the emails back and forth, it is obvious the Uk cabinet office was also aware of what was going on from at least the 16 Nov 2017 when they were sent the draft policy to look at.

    183. Bob Mack says:

      @Gullane 04,

      Perhaps you could indicate what level of corruption your willing to tolerate to obtain your vision of a free Scotland.

      What if Alex was languishing in prison. Expendable for Indy?

      Mark Hirst,Craig Murray and even Stu. Expendable for Indy?

      It is a road that leads you to perdition when you accept even one act. You deliberately give away your decency and morality as the cost of making what you bekieve is a better country.

      Not me Im afraid.

    184. Bob Mack says:

      @Gullane 04,

      Perhaps you could indicate what level of corruption your willing to tolerate to obtain your vision of a free Scotland.

      What if Alex was languishing in prison. Expendable for Indy?

      Mark Hirst,Craig Murray and even Stu. Expendable for Indy?

      It is a road that leads you to perdition when you accept even one act. You deliberately give away your decency and morality as the cost of making what you believe is a better country.

      Not me Im afraid.

    185. Andy Ellis says:

      @Footsoldier 9.40am

      Simple: Joanna Cherry. Streets ahead of Sturgeon intellectually and in terms of charisma, but most importantly not someone who has lied to parliament and been at the centre of an unsavoury cabal of incompetents posing a clear and present danger to the prospects of achieving indy.

      Both the movement and party are larger than individuals. If Nicola fell under a bus – or was metaphorically cast under one by her party – do folk really think that the % for indy will decrease? No, of course it won’t. Nicola is seen as a competent administrator within the constrains of the current devolutionary settlement, but little else. The Sturgeonista Loyal need to take on board that her personal following won’t deliver independence.

    186. Strathy says:

      When Scottish voters and taxpayers see how badly they have been let down by the internal auditors; they may decide that external auditors need to be called in.

      The Murrells may not take just independence with them, but devolution too.

    187. Frank Gillougley says:

      Amid all the devious machinations and twists and turns of the plot against Scotland, this article is a simple guiding light. Again, it brings me back to Keats’philosophical observation, Truth is beauty and beauty truth. That is all ye know on earth and all ye need to know’.

      Simply compare and contrast the contortions of Evans’ spoken responses the other day with the above dictum and you’ll see what i mean.

      When ‘truth’ is presented to look like john carpenter’s ‘the thing’ then you know that something is very awry.

      This is not a Scotland worth pursuing.

    188. Dan says:

      A well articulated read Robin.
      However, the depressing aspect is that it even required to be written at all. 🙁

      We defo require #MoreTrustLessRust as fed up of this corrosion being dished out by the sisters of no mercy…

    189. Willie says:

      Gullanemo4 @ 9.48

      I for one would love to be united in our quest for independence. But not at the expense of sordid, rotten corrupt governance.

      Sturgeon and her coterie of control have totally and utterly abused the rule of law. They have acted as a mafiosa statelet using the mechanisms of the state to dispense state violence against the person.

      There is absolutely no place in society for this kind of behaviour. Institutionally rounding up the Jews, or the lefties or whoever is just not on. But that is exactly what Sturgeon and her coterie of control have been doing.

      They had also, aside of their behaviours in government, aided and abetted by a rotten and corrupt Police Scotland – COPFS undermined the democratic nature of their own party structure playing fast and loose abusing selection processes, discounting member involvement.

      These are not the actions of a united Scotland. These are the actions of a faction of thugs who do not know right from wrong.

      And people like this must be removed. For what they do once they will do again and again. That is how it works and that is why there must now be a backlash for change.

      Independence could be within our grasp but not under the current Sturgeon regime.

      Changing that is an absolute essential and we fail to do that at our peril.

    190. Andy Ellis says:

      @ gullane04 9.48am

      I echo Bob Mack’s response to your post, but would also point out that a party threat has no Plan B – indeed one which has set its face firmly against having one – is the biggest obstacle we face, not the moribund unionist opposition. You and those who share your views pose a far greater danger to achieving independence in the short to medium term.

      It won’t matter if the SNP have an overwhelming majority post 2021 elections, as only unreasoning faith based loyalist accept the gradualist narrative that British nationalists will “give” us #indyref2. I’d prefer the SNP’s feet to be held to the fire by NOT enjoying a majority and having to depend on MSPs that were actually committed to independence. I’d prefer an SNP that didn’t ask permission but told Westminster what was going to happen. I’d prefer an SNP not infected with liars, woke Wahhabis and gradualists who appear quite content to punt #inyref2 into the long grass.

      I won’t vote SNP because they no longer represent my values, and a party which can behave as Robin’s article sets out shouldn’t be one we place uncritical trust in to govern, let alone lead us to indy. Those like you who advocate the “my party right or wrong” are committing the same error as Republicans in the USA who tolerated (and continue to enable) Trumpism.

      We’ve seen where that ends.

    191. Sarah says:

      I asked last night btl “what should we here do? Email Robin’s article to all MSP/MPs?”

      I haven’t seen any suggestions yet. But surely we must do something, en masse and quickly?

    192. Wee Chid says:

      gullaneno4 says:
      15 January, 2021 at 9:48 am
      What if it was you or one of your family who was being silenced under threat of prosecution, loss of liberty and loss of reputation because you happened to disagree with the government of the day?
      Isn’t that what Pinochet did?

    193. Breeks says:


      Ottomanboi says:
      15 January, 2021 at 8:44 am

      TRUST…for my post millennial generation is a word written in desert sand…

      Might seem like that Ottomanboi, but my generation was raised under the spectre of a Cold War turning into a hot war so hot it would melt the planet. It would be started by an idiot, and you’d have four minutes warning from a standing start. These facts were taken for granted.

      My parents generation had the second global World War to deal with, and meeting first hand all the depravity which humanity is capable of.

      How could these generations be creative when life meant simply staying alive? Sadly, I rather suspect the people in the Middle East of today feel like that right now, with their lives blighted by darkness and no chance to contribute to anything creative.

      I’m not being dissmissive, but trust? Losing trust in politicians and society ranks as a misdemeanor in the greater scheme of things. It’s a fleshwound.

      I don’t know whether hardships and suffering produces better politicians and righteous morality, or whether it’s relative peace and complacency which allows pond life and bottom feeders to thrive.

      Maybe there isn’t an equilbrium constantly stretching and regulating itself. Maybe it’s all just making the best of our journey though chaos. The older you get, the less sense or certainty there is to any of it.

      By my calculation, there will be far fewer creatures roaming the planet when my time expires than there were when I was born. We have wiped them out. Fail.

      The poor waiflike kids in Africa still starve and suffer droughts and curable diseases humanity could prevent. Fail.

      The World tolerates murderous apartheid regimes like weeping sores it could cure but chooses not to. Fail.

      Humanity is consuming this planet and polluting it with our waste like an infestation, the sheer enormity of which makes a mockery of token environmentalism. Fail.

      But there are two component to this… the shit you inherit from the generation before yours, and the shit for which your generation is responsible for creating. You can’t do much about the former perhaps, but you can strive to steer your own generation in the right direction. Sadly most of them won’t listen.

      I want my generation to free Scotland from the prison and exploitation of it’s Union straightjacket, take command of our wealth and use it wisely like the Norwegians, distribute prosperity fairly so our kids can fulfill their potential and be smarter, better, more ingenious people than we were, and in Scotland’s case, contain ourselves and reverse our unchecked ploriferation. We can take our barren wasteland stripped of its indigenous wildlife and forestry, and recreate our Nation as a shining example to the planet how to live in productive harmony with the unique and absurdly fantastic natural environment we have taken for granted for too long.

      I don’t want to see the last elephant in Africa or the last Polar bear in Canada. My God, it terrifies me that these prospects are even credible. What have we done??? Instead, I want to see the first generation of Caledonian brown bear in 1000 years to be born free to roam wild in the Great Caledonian Pine Forest that is part of Scotland’s restored ancient wilderness. When my judgement day arrives, at least that would be one pass mark.

    194. mike cassidy says:

      It would be ironic

      To say the least

      If a pro-independence Labour Party

      Became the best bet for the votes of disillusioned SNP voters

      Like myself

      How the Gods would laugh!

    195. ALISON BALHARRY says:

      ”The vast majority of the SNP’s politicians are good and honest people who had nothing whatsoever to do with this; there will be no problem forming a strong working government”

      What nonsense, the vast majority are complicit in various wrongs against various elected SNP folks, eh Mark McDonald the vast majority of SNP politicians treated him disgracefully, shunning him and accepting he be confined to the basement, and he’s but one example.
      And is disgraced Derek Mckay STILL an SNP member, has the alleged investigation into him concluded yet? Aye he’s got the right pals in the rotten, top to bottom, SNP.

      Just peruse their shenanigans in Dundee.

      https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/politics/snp-infighting-more-like-game-16157699

    196. Dan says:

      Imagine how much easier it would be to campaign for Scotland returning to self governing status if the massive expenditure and time wasted over recent years on this whole sorry affair, culminating in this Inquiry, had instead been focused on developing policies and the rollout of services that actually benefited our society.

    197. Dan says:

      FFS direct link to Daily Redcoat.
      I give up…

    198. paul says:

      @Gullane 04,

      The leadership has done nothing to promote, let alone advance the virtues of independence.

      Indeed, their only gesture, the vapid growth commission report, actively diminished it.

      If the leadership of a (now only nominally) party of independence does not make the case for independence, what hope is there of that outcome?

      If ‘all pulling together’ means accepting a partner, one with the closest thing to power available, that is resistant to even mentioning independence outside the campaign window, how is it ever going to come about?

      The current leadership is temperamentally antithetical to independence. If that is what you want, it can only achieved without them.

      Dumping the current FM and her associates is surely a more productive approach.

      Parties and movements should be robust enough to survive their loss.

      I am reminded of how Anthony Blair’s departure was viewed with relief and blanket amnesia as he swanned off into money grubbing irrelevance.

    199. James Wyness says:

      Excellent article Robin. Thank you. I too believe in firm foundations. We can’t build a new nation on a bed of lies and corruption.

    200. ALISON BALHARRY says:

      Dan says:
      15 January, 2021 at 10:44 am
      FFS direct link to Daily Redcoat.
      I give up…

      Ah right enough in light of the shocking state of Scotland at all levels, not archiving an article, aye shocking eh.

      Of course may be you’re implying I’m some sort of unionist troll, eh no, and I use my full name on here.

    201. Tannadice Boy says:

      @ALLISON BALHARRY@ 10:39am
      Tell me about it. I am very disappointed in our elected members in Dundee. There is no credible opposition which is why the SNP occupy all elected positions. That’s why I am voting for the ‘Did’nae vote party’ we are hoping to get over the 50 percent of the vote. There are no office bearers or vested interests in the Did’nae vote party. Meanwhile Dundee slips into a hazy oblivion as the drug Capital of Europe. To add insult to injury our old friend of this blog says Robin’s article and blog contributors are part of a Toe-Ray plot. Doesn’t work on me anymore.

    202. Tackety Beets says:

      Mia @ 10.05 today.

      Like you, I was thinking about RT etc last night as I read Robin’s post. You have set it out very well.
      Without Question AS on RT left the UK Political world in fear of what he would expose.

      The aspect of the Alphabet court case which I found hard to swallow was simple. AS had been working in paedo central(WM) for decades & there was nothing, nowt, NADA ever exposed. He moves to Scot Parl & suddenly he is up to all sorts …….mmmm does not compute.

      The other matter that my brother & I discussed often last year, what has NS delivered since 2014?
      Every project we thought of was in AS era.
      We really struggled to find ANYTHING/project/policy that she can hang her coat on & say she delivered it?
      Possibly getting on with further dualling of A9.
      We can list quite a few/many projects which are an embarrassing failure or at least not gone to plan.

      Like others here I remember the upsurge of hope when NS accepted the SNP reigns. My thoughts were great AS the strategist in the background & NS who will have ALL AS support & gain many of the “a dinna like yon AS” voters……it was an ideal situation.
      By about autumn of 2015, I was thinking AS had been offering advice/help & eventually NS turned to
      AS “I am the leader, I will do it my way & I do not need you chirping in the background, so do one”

      In summation, NS has been one of my life’s biggest disappointment.
      Angry does not cover it.

    203. David Sharpe says:

      I have never voted Snp because of any one person, I have always made a point of avoiding the cult of personality in any form of life whether it be showbiz or politics.
      I have seen Nicola Sturgeon and her cronies do some strange things since Alex Salmond stood down, and I was always hoping that they would come good.
      Alas they never have, and to this very day she stands there like the queen of scotland telling us not to leave our houses and all the sheep follow her as if she is our great dictator and must be obeyed while they are losing their jobs and their employers are going bust
      I have never understood how a person working in the likes of a post office can be allowed to turn up for work with the snotters tripping them and full of the flu, but now w have this virus doing the rounds and most people are still fit and healthy with no affect whatsoever on their health, we get all this guff about how many people have died with covid but the statistics point out that most are over the age of 82 with underlying health problems and in some kind of care, btw these figures are provided by the government not by me
      Celtic went to bahrain a place I was in a month ago, a place you have to pay and recieve a negative covid test to enter or you are quarantined , they came back, one of them was tested and found to have the virus, where did he get it, I say he got it in scotland which is more than likely, anyway the rest of the fit young footballers had to quarantine as well as other staff members, no others have the virus, at least none of them have been rushed to an icu as far as I am aware
      I have had 3 covid tests since December 10 last year, all clear as I new they would be, I got them all done myself to satisfy some government proclamations that to do certain things they had to be done, £120 a time, some lucky people are making a killing there
      Anyway I have never rated Nicola Sturgeon but I always voted snp, but if those clowns are still in power come the elections, I will not vote and leave the country for a nice 6 month holiday in my home abroad, I wish a lot of people had the money and the freedom to join me

    204. mike cassidy says:

      Daily Record link archived

      https://archive.is/NYH7p

    205. Captain Yossarian says:

      I’ve only been reading WoS for 10-days or so. Who needs newspapers when you have targeted investigative journalism of this quality to hand.

      In my view, one of the top contributors is ‘Willie’. Let me say now, whoever he is, his opinions are obviously heartfelt and we can only hope that ALL at Holyrood take note of what he says.

      They have let a lot of people down.

    206. Mike says:

      Some will think Nicola ain’t capable of such corruption because she’s a woman, a supporter of minorities, anti BoJo, anti Brexit and just that wee lass from The West coast that did well.

      Her face and voice now makes me feel sick and I cannot bring myself to vote SNP again until this is fully resolved and she’s gone.

    207. ScottieDog says:

      I’d sum up the last 5 or 6 years as talking to the left whilst they walked to the right
      Under the lovely veneer of climate emergency declarations and ‘wellbeing’ they were knee deep in collaboration with the property developer lobby, Charlotte street partners and the London banking corruptocracy, London airports, and laterly benny Higgins and the big land lobby.

      The past 5 years has been a massive failure in devolution. Effective policy could have put us in a very strong position now where independence was merely the next logical step in proceedings.

    208. Bill Craig says:

      TD says:
      15 January, 2021 at 9:10 am
      “Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
      14 January, 2021 at 10:34 pm
      ”The Lord Advocate is not part of the judiciary rather he is the Scottish government”

      He’s both. He’s head of the prosecution service and he’s also a minister in the Scottish Government.“

      But he is not part of the judiciary. The judiciary consists of judges (senators, sheriffs and JPs). The Lord Advocate is not a judge.

      Yes, tht’s true, but the person who was Lord Advocate when the malicious prosecution was brought without probable cause against the accountants who worked on the Rangers FC bankruptcy case, is now a judge.

    209. holymacmoses says:

      ‘In a position of power, you should never create laws or procedures for a purpose related to the pursuit of an individual; it represents a gross misuse of those powers.’

      Thanks for this Mr McAlpine.

      I have been of the opinion, for a long time now, that this debacle is the culmination of a single threat made to a single successful politician who proved to be a blockade of legal and historical integrity and, consequently, would not be intimidated and who was certainly cleaner, cleverer and more astute than the ever-increasing collection of bullies hauled in by the initiator in order to protect herself from her initial folly.

    210. Effijy says:

      Anas Sarwar’s father was Pakistani and then British and
      when a more lucrative political job became available back
      in Pakistan he jumped to join a right of centre party in Pakistan
      and retook Pakistani citizenship.

      He is enormously wealthy and enjoys the title 33rd Governor of the Punjab.

      Anas had 1 term in his Dad’s Labour MP seat.

      Jackie Baillie doesn’t want the poison chalice of London Labour’s mouthpiece
      in Scotland. So as the Sarwar family know, the higher up the political structure
      you go the more power and wealth you receive.

      You can always jump from left to right parties and countries to bring in the money!

    211. Cath says:

      Who would be the new leader commanding the popularity Nicola Sturgeon currently enjoys and in time for the election in around 16 weeks time?

      Despite everything, and there is a lot of “everything” even beyond the Salmond stitch up, I’d prefer to see NS lead the party into the elections then be forced to resign – if we had an ideal world where the media wouldn’t bring any of these issues up during the campaign. If you think we have that ideal world, dream on. The only reason this isn’t all over the media (aside from legal injunctions, but indy media is managing) is because they are holding fire until the perfect time, which is during the election campaign when it really is way too late. There is only one other alternative to them holding fire until the election campaign, and that is that the unionist media and state actively want to keep NS in place. Take your pick on which is worse.

    212. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Breeks (10.38) –

      Great comment, thanks.

      Your environmental slant chimes with a book I’ve just finished – The Tao of Revolution by Chris Smith (Stairwell Books 2019). I think you’d like it.

      😉

    213. Breeks says:


      gullaneno4 says:
      15 January, 2021 at 9:48 am

      Why do some posters on here not understand the dynamics that is going on in Scotland at the moment.
      We are in the driving seat to gain independence,…

      …ONCE we have won we then take stock of what kind of Scotland we ALL want to live in…

      My friend Gullaneno4, have you stopped to consider the reason this Conspiracy sought to destroy Alex Salmond was because it has the greater ulterior motive of stopping Scottish Independence?

      This Conspiracy has already squandered the open goal of Brexit which could and should have provided Scotland with liberation and place in the European family of nations.

      Instead, Scotland was paralysed, frozen out of negotiations without ANY representation because Nicola Sturgeon made the arbitrary decision that Scotland would do nothing, hold no referendum, prompt no Constitutional crisis, cause no disruption whatsoever, until the final details of Brexit were known. Nicola Sturgeon.. Most assuredly the toast of Brexiteering Tories! Brexit without a Constitutional challenge from Sovereign Scotland. Even Daniel Defoe would have to raise his glass to so slick a deception.

      This Conspiracy has normalised the unconstitutional subjugation of our sovereign people and done it without even raising a protest. It has conned us, and given away a precious thing which wasn’t theirs to give.

      This Conspiracy has squandered mandate after mandate after mandate. Why? Fear of losing? Really??? Fear of winning more like, especially if polling was backed and bolstered by a campaign… so thus of course, under Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland must have no Independence Campaign. QED.

      Don’t you see Gullaneo4? This Conspiracy is right now in the process of embedding Section 30 into Scotland’s political Convention so that sovereignty is permanently removed from Scottish Democracy. THEY MUST NOT SUCCEED.

      The Enemy is not at the gate, the Enemy is inside the perimeter and already at the heart of us.

      Name me one thing which Nicola Sturgeon has done to advance the cause of Scottish Independence. Before you quote our majority in the polls, be aware I attribute this to ill feeling and animosity towards Brexit and Boris Johnson. Nicola Sturgeon has not done a single thing to capitalise on opportunity, but instead the wolf she has been feeding was the screwball, wokist, evil wolf which would divide us, undermine the cause, forfeit our strengths, and thrive on Scotland’s misery.

    214. Effijy says:

      Fiona Bruce on BBC Biased Question time earns her multi million pound salary
      by trying to show Scotland and SNP in a bad light.
      More BBC research was put into this addenda than everything else.

      Ms Whiteford was finally dispatching her as SNP MP’s should have done previously.
      They tried to suggest Covid deaths were particularly bad in Scotland.
      No. Proportionately we are 45% lower.

      It’s spreading more rapidly in Scotland in the second wave?
      Yes it is. Exactly as it is doing in all 4 U.K. countries and most globally!

      Scotland isn’t vaccinating as quickly as England?
      Not as quick but better and more appropriately targeted.
      England seek numbers and thousands can queue up for mass vaccination at Sports Centres etc.
      In Scotland we see that the elderly in care homes are the most vulnerable so this is more time consuming. We must ensure no wasted vaccines so distribution numbers must be exact.
      We are only wasting 1% when 5% is recognised as being a good outcome.

      Well Done. BBC propaganda shot down in flames
      and the Saltire flies proud and high.

      PS One remote citizen was yet again an obvious Scottish Unionist not happy
      with SNP’s management of Covid.
      She always had her hand up wanting to offer more NHS discredit and I’m sure
      she would have been given more time had Ms Whiteford not knocked that nonsense
      right out of the park.

      Regrettably she won’t be asked on again as there are other SNP mugs that just sit there and take it.

    215. holymacmoses says:

      In 2014, when he resigned and handed the reins over to Ms Surgeon he couldn’t know:

      (a) The UK would vote themselves out of the EU

      (b) Ms Sturgeon loved personal power more than she loved Scotland

      (c) Ms Sturgeon wasn’t prepared to concede her power to a person
      capable of leading Scotland to Independence – something she
      was incapable and frightened of attempting to do.

      (d) She was totally ruthless in her attachment to power.

      Mr Salmond DID know that it was ‘iffy’ handing over the reins to someone who was married to the man running the party in power.

      Mr Salmond should have trusted his instincts more than he trusted Ms Sturgeon

    216. Ron Maclean says:

      @Sarah 10:30am

      I’m hoping ‘events’ will soon bring this phase to a conclusion. Then we can address the urgent questions arising from it.

      How will we build a Scotland which is neither corrupt nor corruptible, how will we ensure it stays that way and once we’ve done that who could lead us to independence?

    217. Gregor says:

      Wishart has made his position clear:

      “Geez. Just seen that article by Robin MacAlpine, courtesy of Tories wanting me to agree with it. What is happening to some people? It’s as if they don’t want us to win anymore. Just another #SNPbad blogger determined to bring down our First Minister with wild conspiracy theories”:

      https://twitter.com/PeteWishart/status/1350020420288851969

    218. Gregor says:

      #SNPbad Wishart, it is #SNPCRIMINAL.

    219. John Main says:

      I don’t remember ever reading a more calmly reasoned political article. All the more persuasive because of the pain and sadness that oozes from the text. And the anger, the dignified and softly spoken anger of a long suffering and tolerant man.

      Beware the fury of a patient man. Beware the fury of a patient nation.

    220. Robert Dickson says:

      Outstanding article…..and it will save me having to type out the self-same arguments every time some blind Nicola groupie chins me for my negative comments on this debacle.
      I’ll merely copy and paste this link.
      The wheesht fur indy mob…..can do one.

    221. Jack Murphy says:

      Thankyou Robin.

    222. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Is there any clarity yet on whether Alex Salmond will appear before the inquiry next week? Too much contradictory chatter…

    223. TruthForDummies says:

      A bit off/on topic

      Just heard a detail of the Margaret Ferrier situation

      Apparently the party were intending to hush it up or spin it, they had no intention of withdrawing the whip.
      Blackford spoke to Margaret and as far as Margaret was concerned it was all ok.

      Margaret is a total NS loyalist, she has campaigned for the SNP in practically every by-election for years.

      Then the SNP need something to distract from Nicola being caught off guard by Ruth questioning her about Murrell at FMQs.

      So next thing Margaret gets a call from SNP media who ask her to put out a statement, without telling her they are withdrawing the whip – exactly the same modus operandi they employed with Neale Hanvey,

      Once she agrees and the statement is released they withdraw the whip.

      Ruth gets bumped down the news bulletin
      And NS gets to be a principled saint

      That’s what they do to their close colleagues and supporters.
      The MSPs and MPs are terrified to step out of line.

    224. TruthForDummies says:

      To add she didn’t stand down as an MP as instructed
      So COPFS has come up with a catch all charge which could mean her going to prison
      No wonder MPs and MSPs are terrified to step out of line

    225. Alf Baird says:

      Ron Maclean @ 11:39

      “How will we build a Scotland which is neither corrupt nor corruptible, how will we ensure it stays that way and once we’ve done that who could lead us to independence?”

      I rather suspect independence may need to come first in your list or priorities, Ron.

      Scotlan haes a gey muckle unionist slump tae dicht oot, mind.

      Can Scots expect any different from nearly a third of a millenia of colonial rule?

      Lets first begin to appreciate that the primary motivation for the independence of any people is invariably to cast off colonial oppression in aw its mankit naitur.

    226. Hatuey says:

      Effijy; “ One remote citizen was yet again an obvious Scottish Unionist not happy
      with SNP’s management of Covid.”

      Are you happy?

    227. alba says:

      @ Sarah says 10:30 am

      “I asked last night btl “what should we here do? Email Robin’s article to all MSP/MPs?” I haven’t seen any suggestions yet. But surely we must do something, en masse and quickly?

      For a start I’d say repost and republish this link (or the Common Weal article for “anti-wingers”) on every public non political thread or forum; any and everywhere where “normal” people ie non-political anoraks might go. Shit never gets cleaned up until enough folk start complaining of the smell.

      Get this out there with a disclaimer of “I don’t normally do politics and its certainly not the best time, but what type of Scotland do you want to see?” Not one that fits a guy up for rape is, if little else, a way to get folks attention.

    228. James says:

      The thought of Bailey, or DRoss or any yoon crowing after winning Holyrood and destroying all hope for us for many years or worse turns my stomach. Just saying like.
      But so do the alleged nefarious activities of some at the top of the SNP.
      There are thousands of honest, decent folk in the SNP, many lifelong supporters of Scottish Independence, and I find it depressing that some here go on about the party being ‘rotten top to bottom’. What insulting nonsense.
      The SNP canker has to metaphorically be cut out, and the party needs to be cleansed, not destroyed, and get back to the important fight; the independence cause…but that can only be done from within. Are more elected SNP parliamentarians going to speak out- let’s hope so and perhaps save the May 2021 campaign. Or join the SNP and get involved, try to get it back on track?
      Re-organise the Bute House silent demonstration maybe?

    229. Sarah says:

      @ Ron Maclean at 11.39: thanks for your response to my query as to what we btl are going to do about the corruption and abuse by Scottish government.

      Overnight I was trying to think of what public figure in Scotland is immune to being ignored by BBC/MSM so if they spoke out, it would actually be reported. Sadly the only such person I could think of was Sean Connery.

    230. Andrew Morton says:

      Gregor @ 11:40

      ‘Whishart for indy’

    231. Alf Baird says:

      Breeks @ 11.21

      “The Enemy is not at the gate, the Enemy is inside the perimeter and already at the heart of us.”

      The colonial power (and its local little helpers) has been inside the gate pulling Scotland’s strings for a third of a Millenia.

    232. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      A rather fine article by Robin McAlpine.

      Also, the quality of btl comments here is much improved compared to recent weeks.

      Well done everyone, specially Rev Stu for republishing here for a wider audience.

    233. Mac says:

      Superb synopsis by Robin McAlpine. Really good idea having it published on here as well. Very powerful.

      I echo the points above by numerous posters that doubt the SNP has that many good people left. Where were they then?

      They have a few for sure but they have all clearly identified themselves by now. They were the ones with the courage to stand up and speak out. We already know who they are.

      For me this article will serve as a convenient marker in time. The MPs & MSPs who speak out after it are not worth saving. The ones who spoke out before it are.

      They all had their chances and when the chips were down and when it really mattered they disgraced themselves, they proved themselves to be sell outs and / or and cowards. Either way they are not worth saving.

      All of the SNP MPs and MSPs pretty much with rare exception have remained silent and complicit throughout it all up to this very day.

      A rare few have shown courage. The tide is clearly turning fast now and so any that come out now and start speaking out are opportunists who are only seeking to save themselves. They disgust me quite honestly.

      I have followed this closely from the outset. There have been a lot of very dark days. I cant imagine what it must have been like for Alex Salmond to endure. And now it really feels like we are turning a corner. They do say it is ‘always darkest before the dawn’.

      As I look back on the last few years reading that article by Robin McAlpine I remembered my contribution to Alex Salmond’s fighting fund for the judicial review. That was the best damn fifty quid I have ever spent. I am very proud to have contributed.

      Now we have to see this out to the end now. For ourselves, for Alex, for the independence movement and for Scotland’s future. Things need to be put right.

      There are going to be books written about all this and probably are already.

    234. Sarah says:

      @ alba and james at 12.05: both suggestions are good – post the Source version of Robin’s article on non-political sites and doorstep Bute House.

      Mind you with Police Scotland [hate that name, by the way and the sooner it is split back up, the better] in the party’s pocket how long will any demo last? Fancy a covid fine, anyone?

    235. Cath says:

      I find it depressing that some here go on about the party being ‘rotten top to bottom

      It definitely isn’t. If anything, the really loud clique are obvious by their small numbers, and the fact so few of them are elected officials. Most MPs and MSPs have been depressingly silent over the past few years as all this has happened – the Salmond stitch up, the trans idiocy and very deliberate division around that, nothing happening with indy and Brexit etc. A handful have been vocally for the clique; a much smaller handful vocally against. But the clique is mostly social media, student groups, special interest groups and NEC members. I’ve never known a time when any party was so visibly and loudly represented by a bunch of loud nobodies rather than their own elected members. This is especially so given how many MPs and MSPs the SNP now have. The elected members who aren’t part of this need to grow spines.

      It’s one of the really sad things about Sturgeon’s time in office. In 2014 it felt like there were a multitude of talent, all being pushed forward and brought on. Since Sturgeon took over, there is none of that. We’ve had a whole year of daily briefings which could have allowed so many more MSPs to become visible and known – there’s a public health minister, a mental health one, and a whole raft of others who could have been doing briefings. (Not to mention the non-party professionals.) Yet no one has the first clue who they are. That is not good management.

    236. Nally Anders says:

      Thank you so much for all your hard work Stu and thank you so much for having the courage to speak out Robin.
      Makes me wonder about the origins of the Hate Crime Bill. Any chance there was a future plan to add politian to the list of protected characteristics. Then we truly would have a Police State.

    237. Bob Mack says:

      Are all SNP members bad? Most certainly not. There are however members at every level including the day to day ordinary members who are totally prepared to tolerate these actions by the hierarchy. That is just the truth.

      We have to recognise that fact and find how to deal with it.

      If Nicola was to step down tomorrow of her own volition we might even be united again.

      Support for Independence in the polls has thus far outstripped the popularity of the SNP in the same polling which can only mean former unionist voters are considering Indy as an option. Is this all down to Nicola?

      It is unlikely as I would expect the SNP vote intention to be at similar levels as Indy voting intention in that case.

      As far as I can see Nicola has become the roadblock rather than the smooth passage. It is no great feat to alienate opponents but is is a greater feat to alienate committed supporters of the very policy you purport to represent. In this case Independence.

    238. Gregor says:

      @Andrew Morton

      Wishart can kiss my constituency vote goodbye (I’ve lent him my vote numerous times), in fact, rotten SNP will not see any votes from me until the public is provided coherent Alex Salmond answers and accountability.

      My values do not bend to unmitigated State corruption and criminality.

    239. Liz says:

      The party faithful punting , both votes SNP. Heads up, the wokeist of the woke are putting their names forward for the list.

      The new NEC better be on top of this.
      Who wants Josh Mennie earning megabucks and ensuring he has full access to the ladies, arrogant tosser.

      No sign of contrition from HQ as yet

    240. Bob Mack says:

      May I also congratulate Robin on his elevation to “Conspiracy Theorist” and ” A nobody ” on WGD comments section.

      Take it as confirmation you are at least sane.

    241. Alec Lomax says:

      How’s Common Weal doing in the opinion polls?

    242. Desimond says:

      @Gregor says:
      Wisharts use of “…It’s as if they don’t want us to win anymore”

      That says it all to me.
      Theres another example of the SNP establishment thinking that People just want the SNP to win.

      They dont.

      They want the SNP to win Independence for Scotland.
      There is a massive difference.

      The means to an end, not the end itself etc.

      If they keep mistaking themselves as the accomplished Heroes rather than just the Message Boys then Joe Public will soon find someone else to take their place.

    243. Pixywine says:

      So now Matt Hancock can’t tell us when or if the lockdown will end.

    244. Bob Mack says:

      @Alex Lomax,

      I think they are about to experience an upsurge in support.

      Rightly so.

    245. alba says:

      @Nally 12:32 Nope, the hate crime bill is all that is required to cover up crimes of our politicians because it works exactly the same way as anti-Semitic legislation; any criticism of Israel is ignored and deflected as being anti-semitic and therefore not worthy of contemplation, never mind investigation, and the accuser themselves becomes the object of scorn.

      Not that I would ever suggest the high heid yins of the SNP would adopt such a policy.
      Aye right.

    246. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Jackie Baillie: You will be pleased to hear that this is my final comment, convener. I suspect that the permanent secretary may regret the sentence that she wrote in her letter to Levy & McRae in which she said:
      “the Procedure was established by me”.
      It now looks as though the failed procedure that was established by the permanent secretary is an orphan, with no one claiming ownership. That concludes my questions.
      Leslie Evans: I will not respond to that comment.’

      From Page 48, here:
      https://www.parliament.scot/parliamentarybusiness/report.aspx?r=13047&mode=pdf

    247. The cultists keep pointing to Yes being at 57/58%, but how much of that is down to the pro-union elderly gradually dying off and being replaced by new voters who haven’t been “conditioned” by the UK? Also, what about the EU citizens that’ll have no doubt changed their minds? Add to that the Brexit/Covid shambles overseen by a bunch of xenophobic loonies to the right of Genghis Khan.

      How can we possibly only be at 57/58%?

    248. Gregor says:

      @Desimond

      I’m glad you’re awake and can see the ‘bigger picture’.

      Let’s hope SNP finds its senses and some moral/ethical spine (or hell mend it)…

    249. Hatuey says:

      Mac “ my contribution to Alex Salmond’s fighting fund for the judicial review. That was the best damn fifty quid I have ever spent.”

      Yip. Well in. There will be more court cases for Alex, of course.

    250. ScottieDog says:

      Well that’s the twitter allegations started about robin. Didn’t take long.

    251. TruthForDummies says:

      The smearing of McAlpine has started
      https://twitter.com/galloglyswan/status/1350054140160987140?s=21
      Usual suspects replied

    252. John says:

      From MSM “Asked about the claims, Sturgeon said she does not believe she lied to Parliament and said she is currently “focused 100%” on the Scottish Government’s coronavirus response”
      Could the FM be using this pandemic to avoid facing the crimes commited by the FM. Is does not beleive different from has not, coaching to what to say and how to say it.

    253. Ian Mac says:

      Excellent article, very timely, deeply felt and should be read out at Holyrood to every MSP and every civil servant there. Then they can consider what they really believe in, their own careers or the health of the nation.
      Although not as close to the detail, i have had much the same journey of disbelief and disillusion with this cadre of people. I can no longer support independence, because the thought of these people overseeing the transition and setting a new constitution is unthinkable and deeply alarming. There can be no question of considering it, as far as I am concerned, until there are cast-iron constitutional rules in place which guarantee a country in which such blatant corruption and unaccountability could never happen.
      The whole point of Scottish independence was to create a nation which would set an example of a modern, open, accountable administration, one which could be trusted and in step with Scottish society. These people have proved that they cannot be trusted with such a task, and the thought of them taking ruling positions, replicating how they operate now, is far too dangerous to risk.
      That is how far they have set back their supposed cause. The only thing I can see that will work is a mass clear out of them, with a new administration, one which will build a transparent, accountable route to good governance, with all the necessary checks and balances built in. We absolutely have to be able to trust there is a better future, with better government, the separation of powers and powerful sanctions for those who might abuse their position. Without that, the game’s a bogey.

    254. Oscar Taime says:

      I rarely comment but this one deserves a thank you to Robin for encapsulating what needed to be said and now needs to be done urgently and to Stu for publishing it where there we are stillr elatively free of the appologists for incompetence & grift. Let us hope the cult of the Murrels will end soon before it does any more damage.

    255. Ron Maclean says:

      @Alf Baird 11:59am

      Tackling corruption seems to me to be a necessary step on the road to independence but because we’re so short of time I’d compromise if a credible leader comes forward with a publicised plan to take us to independence which includes ending the corrupt practices we’ve endured recently. That would take leadership qualities that aren’t currently obvious within the SNP.

      The almost complete silence from the few plausible candidates available suggests that we might attempt the transition to independence facing the same problems with the same mindset that brought us to where we are now. Cauld kail het up.

      ‘That spectacular volunteer movement which meant to lead the colonized people to supreme sovereignty at one fell swoop, that certainty which you had that all portions of the nation would be carried along with you at the same speed and led onwards by the same light, that strength which gave you hope: all now are seen in the light of experience to be symptoms of a very great weakness.’ (Fanon 1963) Thank you for bringing him to my attention.

    256. Gregor says:

      One bets a spike in accusations of ‘hate speech’ (e.g. ‘the misogynist charge!’), will correlate to the machinations of the Salmond inquiry/saga.

      ‘They’ve’ created a MONSTER…

    257. John says @ 1:21 pm

      From MSM “Asked about the claims, Sturgeon said she does not believe she lied to Parliament and said she is currently “focused 100%” on the Scottish Government’s coronavirus response”
      Could the FM be using this pandemic to avoid facing the crimes commited by the FM.

      Of course she’s hiding behind the pandemic. Look how quick she was to park even the merest mention of independence. She was on the Covid-19 excuse faster than a retiring Labour MP with an ermine robe dangled in front of them.

    258. Rae says:

      I have no doubt the unionists will have much more information than what’s been said in Robin’s excellent article.
      They are keeping their tinder dry. It will be used in May’s Scottish elections for maximum effect no doubt. That’s when the whole sad episode will come to a crescendo, unfortunately.

    259. Mia says:

      “The MSPs and MPs are terrified to step out of line”

      There is no better line of defence than a good attack. The only thing those MPs and MSPs have to do is to get together and threatening with spilling the beans loud and clear, one by one, unless she and her husband step down.

      As legitimate representatives of the people of Scotland, it is their obligation to eject a rogue like this from the driving seat, particularly when that rogue is riding roughshod over principles, ethics, democracy, freedom of speech, our right to self determination, our sovereignty and the fundamental constitutional aim of the party – the very things each one of them was given a seat to protect.

      The time to act like mice is over. Now it is the time to act like parliamentarians.

    260. Robert Louis says:

      Breeks at 1121am,

      Brilliant post. This is exactly the issue at heart. Nicola has stood back, dithering, whilst freely handing away Scotland’s consitutional rights by wittering on about a section 30. And, as you rightly point out, Scotland’s sovereignty was not hers to give away.

      That she has done nothing in six years, to advance the cause of independence, despite opportunity after opportunity, makes me question her true motives. Playing the indy game, whilst ensuring their is ALWAYS a reason for not proceeding to independence.

      The current polls are a reflection of brexit and Boris and his murderous, greedy, selfish, piggy Tory party. Nothing is due to any actions by Nicola Sturgeon. I think she might choke if she is forced to do anything about independence.

      The whole things stinks.I cannot help but draw the conclusion after six years of deliberate inaction and false ‘promises’, that ultimately, despite her protestations, Nicola serves other masters, somwehere in London.

    261. robertknight says:

      Just wandered briefly over to Wishart’s Twitter.

      OMG…

      Talk about being in denial?

    262. Robert Louis says:

      Are SNP MP’s and MSP’s now as cowardly as the pathetic republicans defending Trump, because they are ‘scared’ of him??

    263. Hatuey says:

      I noticed Nicola didn’t head the UN Global Pandemic briefing today. She looked rough yesterday. Maybe things are weighing on her.

      The thing about Robin Macalpine is that his opinions reach parts that Wings doesn’t reach. This is article is a significant historical development.

      A lot of people are realising today that Scottish politics as we knew it is over. Gone. Everyone will know it soon.

      The truth of this hits you like a tonne of bricks when you arrive at it. It’s like that scene at the end of ‘Planet of the Apes’ when Heston finds a piece of the Statue of Liberty.

      “You maniacs! You blew it up! God damn you all to hell!”

      What happens next? How does the play out? That’s what I think about. We get back in the horse, yes, continue trotting along the post-apocalyptic beach, but where to?

      Maybe the perfect person to fix this is the person who was the victim of the wrong at the heart of it. That’s a simple enough proposition, but what sort of context will he operate in? What sort of political landscape are we walking into?

    264. Duncan Days Ordelly says:

      If Sturgeon survives this, does that mean we won’t be able to buy 2-for-1 pizzas?

    265. Liz says:

      Hatuey, you are right.
      Richard Murphy, economist with no skin in this game has tweeted an article re this to his followers.
      He praised the inegrity of Robin McA.

      Talking of weak MSPs, Dornan is praising the FM, boy has he become a disappointment.

      As for that smearing of RMA on twitter, this does my head in.
      Another woman using a comment about r*pe and being so upset she had to resign her post.
      Cue the usual suspects piling in with, oh how very terrible this ‘happened’ to you.

      Nothing happened to her, it was a crass comment whilst discussing sexism.

      How some of today’s young feminists ever manage to get out of bed of a morning, is a mystery.

    266. TruthForDummies says:

      Independence is closer today because of Robert’s article and Wing’s work
      The sooner Sturgeon goes the sooner we get independence
      Anything that helps her out the door is a bonus

    267. Saffron Robe says:

      When I was talking to my Mum this morning she said she was concerned that people would become so disgusted with Nicola Sturgeon that they would give up on independence. I replied that I didn’t think so. I said the good people of Scotland are intelligent enough to know the difference between independence and a leader who is a single point of failure.

      Davie Oga says:

      “What’s next? Killing people? Why not?”

      Davie, they’re already killing people with their botched handling of the pandemic (transferring patients directly into care homes for instance) and the imposition of a “gold standard” lockdown which is doing far more harm than good. And if this lockdown loop goes on for much longer then the deaths will continue far into the future.

      In The Times yesterday: beating Covid-19 ‘as good as’ getting vaccine, say scientists. A study suggested those who have had the virus are left with a strong defence against future infection. The Public Health England (PHE) study suggested that coronavirus gives “at least as good” an immune defence against future infections as a vaccine.

      Really? It has taken them ten months to work that out? I could have told them that at the beginning. And now we are going to be given our takeaways through a hatch like prisoners in a gaol cell, except now we are all prisoners of a government out of control.

    268. shug says:

      It is interesting that Nicola seems to be continuing as if nothing is happening.
      She must realise that the spaghetti women know their cover will be blown eventually and will already be thinking how they can use the email and whatsapp trails they have, to secure some sort of advantage. They will be worth money. Within the UK civil services I am sure they could secure a nice wee job, but only before the elections.
      In addition the security services and hence Westminster has a copy of every e mail phone call and message.
      The civil service will be no different and by now some MSPs will have copies of the relevant copies ready for distribution.
      Then there will be the correspondence to the BBC, the Record, Rape crisis Scotland and any other organisation that has been engaged to attack AS.
      The authorities will never let Nicola off the hook and it will blow up.
      All she can do now is to look for a dignified exit and do something to ensure the party get a new leader.

    269. Desimond says:

      @Hatuey
      “We get back in the horse”

      Schurely schome mishtake! 🙂

      @Gregor
      If I’m really really charitable and try to consider the perspective of folk like Wishart and the Holyrood MSPs living the dream…I can appreciate it must be really hard to strive towards your own demise even though that is the very ethos that got you where you are today.

      Absolute Comfiness destroys absolutely it seems.

      Reminds me of Jodie Foster saying to Denzel Washington “Well that’s you made it, you have a chip in the game. easy street from now on!” after he learns a certain nasty Establishment secret…Denzel of course just laughs at them all and walks away.

    270. Papko says:

      Many an astute “no” voter had deep disquiet over Sturgeon and Wishart back in 2014.
      Something told them that these standard bearers for a better country were not to be trusted.
      Yet at the time their reservations were derided by the Yes campaign.

      Who is suffering from Stockholm Syndrome now?

    271. Tannadice Boy says:

      O/T FYI
      2 new parties registered with the Electoral Commission today. The ALBA party and the Scottish Family party. New entrants seeing an opportunity?. Nothing wrong with that in a democracy.

    272. Robert hughes says:

      Papko – aye right , all those ” astute ” NO-Voters were too busy screaming their hatred of Alex Salmond , waving their Union flags and kissing photos of the queen . Retrospective back-slapping garbage . NO Voters sold us out , big time .

      To answer your question

      You

    273. Ron Maclean says:

      ‘Many an astute “no” voter …’

      They were so astute they believed the Vow.

    274. Effijy says:

      Hatuay

      I’m happy that Scotland while under overall control of
      Westminster our NHS has performed better that that in
      Tory England or Labour Wales.

      I would like an enquiry into how an independent Scotland
      could perform along the lines of our oil rich friends in Norway.
      They have a 10th of the deaths we do.

      Could we have achieved lockdown when we originally wanted.
      No. Westminster decides.

      Could we have closed our borders?
      No. Westminster controls that.

      Could we decide on furlough payments
      and business support levels?
      No.

      We feed our kids and we don’t plan to sell our NHS and
      we won’t stand for the bedroom tax.
      Some credit where credit is due!

    275. Gregor says:

      @Desimond

      No doubt, it’s game over for ‘them’, however, the most infuriating part is that they will resist and obstruct, dragged kicking and screaming (in conceited, excruciating slow motion), while victim Scotland bares the brunt of its needless infliction (at the worst possible and potentially most viable moment in our societal time)…

      Unforgivable.

    276. TruthForDummies says:

      @Tannadice Boy

      Do you have a link to the registration I can’t find it

    277. TruthForDummies says:

      @tannaduce boy

      Found it it’s a registration not a decision.
      Thanks

    278. The Brunswickian says:

      Independence is now inevitable. Independence will be thrilling and challenging and difficult and scary. It will probably make us all poorer in the short term. All the challenges will be made 100 times worse by having these shameless, self-serving crooks in any way near our future governance.

    279. barrie gadgie says:

      so, macalpine says, that the scotsman says, that an unnamed ‘sturgeon ally’ says..and this passes for authoritative? sounds more like mince to me.

    280. Hatuey says:

      Effijy: “I’m happy that Scotland while under overall control of
      Westminster our NHS has performed better that that in
      Tory England or Labour Wales.”

      Why stop there? Compared to those of Malawi and Burundi our health service is one of the best in the world.

      It isn’t a philosophical point, not really. If you need to compare yourself to the worst examples in order to make yourself look good, well, you’re sort of fucked to begin with, aren’t you?

    281. Fireproofjim says:

      Desimond @12.21
      You are so right.
      People don’t want the SNP to win.
      They want the SNP to win Independence.
      After that we can be anything we want – monarchist, Republican, Green, Tory, Klingon. But it will be Scots who decide. Not any party.
      That’s why I feel we have to reluctantly vote SNP. However the party may have a completely different outlook by May.
      There must be many who know it and who will see it through. Joanna for example.

    282. Hatuey says:

      barrie gadgie, nobody here is asking you to believe anything.

      You’re here for a reason though and if you had no doubts whatsoever I don’t think you would be here.

      I don’t hang around on blogs with people that believe the earth is flat, because I’m sure it’s round.

    283. Hatuey says:

      Desmond, when we bring on the empty horses you’ll understand…

    284. Mia says:

      “All she can do now is to look for a dignified exit and do something to ensure the party get a new leader”

      It is too late for that. Her sheer arrogance made her lock all the doors she had available for a dignified exit. The last chance for her to do so was the day Mr Salmond won the Judicial Review. Instead of walking away from it, she willingly walked right into the deep end of the sht up to her armpits.

      She will go down with the entire titanic that is her government, with Sweeney directing the orchestra and Smith, Wishart, Blackford, Black, Blackman, Dornan and Hunter playing the instruments while Evans and the civil servants from hell rush to elbow everybody else and jump to take the life vests and the best seats on the lifeboats.

      She is bringing down the SNP with her. But looking at her actions, was this not part of the plan all along? Sure it was. Only that was just part of the plan, though. The main one was to render Mr Salmond not credible and unelectable. Her incompetence has achieved precisely the opposite: she has made him a victim. The public always sides with the victim.

      Sturgeon has demonstrated to us that a fit for purpose SNP (in substance, not in name) could not survive without somebody like Salmond at the front. She has also demonstrated that Salmond’s political credibility goes far beyond the SNP. Hers? I doubt she will be remembered as anything other than the coward that sold Scotland even for less than Brown did.

      So long Sturgeon. Don’t let the door hit you on the arse on your way out. I hope Scotland’s history books treat you with the contempt you deserve.

    285. Lorna Campbell says:

      Robert Hughes: couldn’t agree more. That was one of the things I was always treated to before 2014: how terrible that man Salmond was, him and all his ilk. When you asked them exactly what it was they objected to, they rarely were able to squeak more than a denunciation of Mr Salmond. What it added up to was an anti independence stance. Nothing more. Even when you asked them to give their reasons for supporting the Union, they couldn’t give them. If you did manage to elicit any basis for their Unionism, it was, in essence, “well, I might be worse off” or “I didn’t move to Scotland for independence. I moved for a better life”. When you posited the suggestion that, maybe, many in Scotland actually wanted independence, they were unmoved – Unionist Scot and rUK voter alike. Only what they wanted mattered. Democracy was nice as a concept so long as it didn’t lead to any outcome that they did not like. The reason NO voters do not like Mr Salmond is because they fear him.

    286. Lorna Campbell says:

      The fact that someone as mild as Robin MacAlpine is saying this will make many stop and think again.

    287. Stuart MacKay says:

      Hatuey,

      > This is article is a significant historical development.

      Spot on. This time last year, roughly speaking, you could only find concern about the Murrells and the way the SNP was run here (I know that’s not true, and apologies to Craig Murray and others, but humour me for now). Then comes Iain Lawson’s blog ostensibly saying the same thing. Iain’s sort of on a different part of the political spectrum with no obvious history or axe to grind. Things are starting to look more serious. Now we have Robin McAlpine on yet another part of the political spectrum with totally different motivations saying the same.

      That’s a large part of the independence movement covered – all saying the same thing. Even the most fervent wheeshter is going to find themselves in a difficult position very soon trying to reconcile what they see day to day with the government and what they know.

      This is probably the straw that breaks the camel’s back but it would never have happened without all the work put in by everybody, the Rev. in particular, to get to this point.

    288. Terry says:

      Anyone notice on the Alex Salmond show judging by the backdrop Alex ain’t in his mill in Strichen anymore? Just guessing but could it be Glasgow? And if so why? Poised ready for media interviews in February? I will just have to “keep the hied” lol as after all he is the master strategist and I trust him to do the right thing for Scotland and for independence.

      I remember after the 2015 election when the 56 SNP MPs entered Westminster. There was an interview with a political journo/pundit who was asked about how he thought they would all get on. He said that Westminster and the power it conveys is a very beguiling place and it can seduce many. He was asked about Alex and I remember the pundit being startled. He replied, “ Alex Salmond? Never!”

      And that’s it in a nutshell. He’s not only a gifted politician and strategist he believes in Scotland and independence above everything else – Unlike Nicola and the gang who put their own personal power and flaky egos first. They’re in the wrong party. In fact they shouldn’t be anywhere near public life.

    289. Lorna Campbell says:

      Rev: this has no connection (except, perhaps, tenuously) to what is happening right now, but a new group has set up and aims to take the trans lobby on head-on.:

      repealthegra.org is aiming to have the 2004 GRA overturned as being the thin end of the wedge when trans ‘rights’ and women’s rights in law are on a collision course. The 2004 GRA came about because same-sex marriage was not legal at that point. Now, it is and there is no longer any need for either the 2004 GRA or the GRA Reform. The Trans lobby should have listened to women when they were telling them to back off, that they had what they wanted, but, no, they had to push it and push it. Well, now, they really will have some opposition and will no longer have it all their own way. Their arrogant attempt to muscle in on the Scottish case against the Scottish government which would result in the redefining of ‘women’ was just a step too far. Nemesis awaits, and we all know that Nemesis was a woman.

    290. LeggyPeggy says:

      Tannadice Boy @ 2.40 pm ,

      The Scottish Family Party are not a new party as they put up a candidate in the G E in December 19 against Jo Swinson which Amy Callaghan went onto win .

      https://www.eastdunbarton.gov.uk/news/general-election-2019-results-east-dunbartonshire

    291. Christian Schmidt says:

      I think it is membership of the Council of Europe that requires the independence and autonomy of the prosecution services, see here: https://rm.coe.int/168074738b

    292. Dan says:

      ALISON BALHARRY says: at 10:51 am

      Ah right enough in light of the shocking state of Scotland at all levels, not archiving an article, aye shocking eh.

      Of course may be you’re implying I’m some sort of unionist troll, eh no, and I use my full name on here.

      And just why would Scotland happen to find itself in this shocking state at all levels.
      It couldn’t possibly be due to the malign influence of the MSM and BBC continually churning out their crap and spin to put and keep Scotland uniformed, divided, and in a shite State.

      We are posting on a site with a considerable reach and readership, so we should be disciplined enough not to promote the “work” of those that promote an agenda opposed to what we are striving for.
      It takes little time or effort to archive a page and get a link at either:

      archive.is

      or

      archive.org.

      Very often you find the page you want has already been saved, so just grab that link and paste it here.
      The Rev uses this function when appropriate in his articles, presumably for saving the page for posterity and reducing traffic to the source.

      I’m implying fuck all of the kind regarding the latter part of your response, but looks like you’d like that to be the case, rather than simply acknowledge the frustration of others that have to continually use their time to archive links that pro indy folk cannae be arsed to do.

      Scottish Government recently bunged Unionist papers a wad of millions to keep them going.
      Plus our own “pro indy” politicians, often with 10s of thousands of followers also continually tweet direct links to the very papers that strive to keep us / them held down and back.
      Seems rather odd to fund and sustain our adversaries’ businesses and agendas.
      You’d hope those leading the way would set an example and precedent in the Boycott, Divest, Sanction modus… But hey ho…

    293. James Che. says:

      Firstly, I am going to view this article of robins in a very different way, I am asking myself, if robin had heard about this plot nearly two years ago and he is implying that, he had learnt the details of this plot, left him stunned sitting in a cafe shocked, why is he telling us now, two years (after)he knew,
      Secondly, the long hard won praise is actually rev stu’s, he complied all the details and did all the research, all the FOI requests, and took all the abuse.
      How did Robin help get this message out to us all in those early two years, did he write about the subject even in a (I want to tell you a story) line way, that mentioned no names, but gave a clear picture of what was going on and what he had learned, Did he approach all the Scottish blogs to try enlighten them.?
      This is my first question.
      How many others in the independence or snp knew, and also did nothing, obviously whomever informed robin also knew, and appears to have done nothing.
      Secondly if we are being led to believe there are still good people near the top of the snp, why did they not let the cat out the bag? we only have all this information through the due diligence of Stu’s long and hard work.
      I have been talking about the infiltration into the snp and the independence movement for a long time now, and that there are those that are still pretending to be on our side, are great professionals at fooling us, if I remember correctly I first stated this as early as 2017. So this is no great surprise to me. Where my own local snp spoke about trying to make the Scottish Parliament sovereign rather than the people of Scotland. In which I disagreed fervently, and he sat in the Scottish Parliament just behind NS pretending to be for the people, now retired I believe.
      This article sounds like a neck saving ploy, two years after the facts are coming to light and are being released. Sorry Robin but I no longer trust anyone in the snp, if I am proven wrong I will apologise on here in public.
      My worry is NOT for the snp, all those that lied or misled us, their heads can role all the way down the royal mile for all I care metaphorically speaking. It is for those of us that are left standing not knowing who to trust and where to go next.
      It is no accident that the snp are being torn apart, set up, brought down, dividing Scottish bloggers, and the revealing way that the opposition are revelling in their delight at the circus.
      And I have to say that I have even lost faith in Joanna cherry, we the people are still sovereign, and JC could have acted on our behalf , under our right to self determination, human rights and claim of right combined, to have released us from the Brexit mess,
      but like NS, concerned herself more with the English Parliament rather than the rights of the Scottish people.
      Sooner or later under the right to choose whom governs us, along with the embedded sovereignty of the people, the right to self determination we will ourselves wake up and act for ourselves where politicians fail us.

    294. Tannadice Boy says:

      @LeggyPeggy 3:47pm
      Thanks for the clarification. Perhaps Scottish Family Party-Putting Families First that stood in East Dunbartonshire has reapplied as solely Scottish Family Party? Definitely applied today with Electoral Commission. Otherwise it has got me scratching my head. No matter it is good to see alternative voting opportunities.

    295. Clwyd Griffiths says:

      Rev Stu, in the interest of fairness, will you allow me to quote Pete Wishart’s superb reply to this article: “What is happening to some people? It’s as if they don’t want us to win anymore. Just another #SNPbad blogger determined to bring down our First Minister with wild conspiracy theories.”

      We need to listen more to Pete Wishart, an intellectual & political giant and a great speaker.

    296. Tony Little says:

      An article that should shock anyone who still thinks there is nothing to see in the SNP-SG + civil servants operating in Scotland.

      I note on Twitter that the character assassination of Robin has started. Typical approach when the message is uncomfortable – try to discredit the messenger. I don’t always have time for Robin, to be honest, but if any of this is untrue, I would expect those defamed to be suing him right now. But, I’ve heard nothing.

      This can not end well.

    297. James Che. says:

      Firstly, I am going to view this article of robins in a very different way, I am asking myself, if robin had heard about this plot nearly two years ago and he is implying that, he had learnt the details of this plot, left him stunned sitting in a cafe shocked, why is he telling us now, two years (after)he knew,
      Secondly, the long hard won praise is actually rev stu’s, he complied all the details and did all the research, all the FOI requests, and took all the abuse.
      How did Robin help get this message out to us all in those early two years, did he write about the subject even in a (I want to tell you a story) line way, that mentioned no names, but gave a clear picture of what was going on and what he had learned, Did he approach all the Scottish blogs to try enlighten them.?
      This is my first question.
      How many others in the independence or snp knew, and also did nothing, obviously whomever informed robin also knew, and appears to have done nothing.
      Secondly if we are being led to believe there are still good people near the top of the snp, why did they not let the cat out the bag? we only have all this information through the due diligence of Stu’s long and hard work.
      I have been talking about the infiltration into the snp and the independence movement for a long time now, and that there are those that are still pretending to be on our side, are great professionals at fooling us, if I remember correctly I first stated this as early as 2017. So this is no great surprise to me. Where my own local snp spoke about trying to make the Scottish Parliament sovereign rather than the people of Scotland. In which I disagreed fervently, and he sat in the Scottish Parliament just behind NS pretending to be for the people, now retired I believe.
      This article sounds like a neck saving ploy, two years after the facts are coming to light and are being released. Sorry Robin but I no longer trust anyone in the snp, if I am proven wrong I will apologise on here in public.
      My worry is NOT for the snp, all those that lied or misled us, their heads can role all the way down the royal mile for all I care metaphorically speaking. It is for those of us that are left standing not knowing who to trust and where to go next.
      It is no accident that the snp are being torn apart, set up, brought down, dividing Scottish bloggers, and the revealing way that the opposition are revelling in their delight at the circus.
      And I have to say that I have even lost faith in Joanna cherry, we the people are still sovereign, and JC could have acted on our behalf , under our right to self determination, human rights and claim of right combined, to have released us from the Brexit mess,
      but like NS, concerned herself more with the English Parliament rather than the rights of the Scottish people. We don’t even need to mention the others recently mentioned on other blogs by stu.
      Sooner or later under the right to choose whom governs us, along with the embedded sovereignty of the people, the right to self determination we will ourselves wake up and act for ourselves where politicians fail us.

    298. The Dissident says:

      @C Griffith

      Wishy Washy is certainly prescient.

      I remember him predicting the demise of the LibDems (at a Burns Supper I think) long before anyone else did.

      The trouble for Pete is that this was just over two years before Nick Clegg became Deputy Prime Minister.

      It is possible he is Sturgeon’s Chief Strategist based on that record.

    299. Toz says:

      But why? Why were they so desperate to tarnish Alex/

    300. Mia says:

      “if robin had heard about this plot nearly two years ago and he is implying that, he had learnt the details of this plot, left him stunned sitting in a cafe shocked, why is he telling us now, two years (after)he knew”

      1. Exactly 2 years ago was January 2019. Mr Salmond was arrested on 24 January 2019 for crimes he did not commit and for the sake of delaying a parliamentary inquiry that would expose the corruption at the heart of Sturgeon’s government and a political conspiracy to stop Mr Salmond returning to politics and independence. If Robin had opened his mouth then, he could have compromised Mr Salmond’s chances of a fair defence.

      How could he live with that?

      2. Because it is very difficult to accept that the person, the party you have put all your trust in for a good chunk of your life has betrayed you and sold your country using your very votes. Cognitive dissonance is a thing: we see it here and over at WGD often enough with people admitting that this government is corrupt but we have to “wheesht for indy”. I only reached a point where I was prepared to take the hands off my eyes and bear the pain of admitting to Sturgeon’s deceit on the 31s January 2020. That was one year too late as to when I should have done so, but I couldn’t before. I couldn’t accept it. The pain was unbearable. However, her capitulation of our sovereignty was an step too far for me and one I could not stomach nor I will ever forgive her for. But each person deals with this cognitive dissonance in different ways and different time frames because different people values things differently. For me, a SNP majority and handing seats to individuals that had had the opportunity to deliver independence for years by refused to do so was not worth losing our popular sovereignty and that broke my cognitive dissonance. For others, judging by what is written BTL in the WGD blog, are going to need much more than that.

      3. Because who would have believed him at that point? Would you?

      4. Because if they did that to a very smart man like Alex Salmond, what would they have done to him if he opened his mouth? Look what they did to Mr Murray and Mark Hirst.

      It is very easy for us now to criticise from the safety of behind a keyboard, but what about you? Why didn’t you open your eyes at that time and predicate the corruption and the mud this woman and her coterie was throwing at us all to stop the Yes movement and to surrender Scotland’s assets? Looking retrospectively, it is not that it wasn’t obvious. Stuart has been warning us of this for years. It was that we refused to accept it and that is on us, not on Robin or anybody else.

      Apart from the Rev, Mr Murray and a very few, who saw this level of betrayal, corruption, deceit, contempt for democracy and abuse of power coming? I certainly didn’t.

      You really have to give it to the British establishment though. This was one hell of a strategy to take full control of Scotland’s to stop its independence and they almost succeeded. They may still succeed but the element of surprise is always crucial in a battle and they lost that now. We are on high state of alert. They would have succeeded though if only the fraud they put in control of the SNP and the Sgov was even half as astute as the man they were using her against.

      I bet you the possibility of a Judicial Review was what the diabolical plan missed. That is what derailed the whole thing and made the cowards turn to damage limitation mode to avoid first and unsuccessfully, the judicial review itself; then the parliamentary inquiry; but more importantly, to protect their own insignificance.

    301. Stuart MacKay says:

      Lorna Campbell

      Congratulations on the launch.

      So what are you’re thoughts on the timing of this? Right now, you’re not just taking on the Trans lobby but in large part the “progressive” left (since it’s hard to split out the issues) and hence the Scottish Government. Given the revelations here, what are your expectations with regards to elections (not just this May)? Is this a sign of radical change coming on many fronts?

    302. Effijy says:

      NOT TO BE DISCLOSED PUBLICLY UNTIL 8PM TONIGHT.

      Good Evening Folks,
      I am writing to inform you all that there will be a public announcement on the @PeoplesAS30 Twitter account at 8pm.
      However, I am writing to advise you ahead of time that Andy Wightman MSP has formally signed an affidavit of support and that now means we have them from parliamentarians in both Holyrood and Westminster.
      Sincerely

      Martin Keatings

    303. TruthForDummies says:

      @LornaCampbell

      I’m in

    304. Lenny Hartley says:

      James Che, Salmond tried to get his evidence of a conspiracy accepted at his trial but the judge said it was inadmissible
      So does not matter what Mcalpine did or did not do, would have not made any difference to the criminal trial.
      .

    305. Astonished says:

      lorna campbell – great stuff. wish you well

    306. Tartan Tory says:

      Lots of people worried about the ramifications here, especially with elections looming in a few months.

      However, if Alex Salmond is the man I think he is, then he’s already got this covered.

    307. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      James Che – you have a talent for creating double comments.

      After you click on “Submit”, let the page settle, then click on your browser’s “Back” button.

      Let that page settle, then refresh the tab/page. You should then see your comment that you appear to think has been lost.

      You can refresh by clicking in the page’s address bar, making sure nothing there is highlighted, then hit return/enter.

    308. Alf Baird says:

      Mac @ 12.26

      “There are going to be books written about all this and probably are already.”

      I believe my book (‘Doun-Hauden: The Socio-Political Determinants of Scottish Independence’), one of few research-based textbooks on the subject, provides most of the underlying reasons why this sort of thing is happening, and will continue to happen until Scotland’s people are truly independent from their longstanding colonial oppression.

      As Albert Memmi said: “A day necessarily comes when the colonized lifts his head and topples the always unstable equilibrium of colonization. For the colonized just as for the colonizer, there is no way out other than a complete end to colonization.”

    309. kapelmeister says:

      Nicola Sturgeon has proved, she is a one woman parcel o’ rogues. She would still have damaged Scotland as FM all by herself. Unfortunately she has all too many shady confederates.

    310. IWhoRattledYourCage says:

      It might be interesting to go through transcripts of the alphabet cur testimonies and look for similarities in speech patterns and phrases. I seem to recall at least one similarity, with two separate women ‘wishing on their life’ aboot something. Similarities in phraseology would indicate that they have been coached, and reveal what they have been told to say. Are transcripts available online? Just a thought.

      And as this open sewer grows to stink more in the harsh sunlight of revealing day, I confess to being absolutely fucking outraged at the cavalier way these vengeful careerist reptiles have used the funds of the Scottish taxpayer for their own abuse. No win, no problem, no charge to them! We pay taxes for filth like this! You can bet the ordinary SNP member did not pay their membership, or donate money (wonder what happened to all the cash that lottery-winning couple donated), to have it spent on failed court cases or teaching embarrassments to Scotland how to lie in court after trying to stitch up a man who would, before all this, have been held in high regard by all in the party.

      And who still is, and always will be, by a great many.

      Damn, man, I hate the fact that this has happened. I hope all the creepy manhating alphabet curs enjoyed their Judas gold (were they paid, anybody know?) for trying to ruin a man’s life, a man whom none of them was worth the shite off his shoes. I hope they enjoy living with the fact they betrayed Scotland for whatever their scabby scarecrow price was. Forever black-marked in Scotland’s books, ladies, Hell kend you and fuck you one and all until the end of fucking time.

    311. Bob Mack says:

      Having met Pete Wishart a few times I am telling you without fear or favour he is no intellecthal giant. hahaha.

      This is the very problem. Reputations created from nothing.

      My old schoolmate of many years ago died recently if covid and he was an intellectual giant and a very decent human being.

      Phil Tataglia. Pete Wishart is an Intellectual dwarf in comparison.

    312. Effijy says:

      Nicola Sturgeon as SNP leader has seen off:

      3 Scottish Labour Leaders
      ? Jim Murphy
      ? Kezia Dugdale
      ? Richard Leonard

      2 UK Labour Leaders
      ? Ed Miliband
      ? Jeremy Corbyn

      2 Scottish Tory Leaders
      ? Ruth Davidson
      ? Jackson Carlaw

      2 Tory PMs
      ? David Cameron
      ? Theresa May

      3 Lib Dem Leaders

      Tim Fallon
      Vince Cable
      Jo Swinson

    313. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @WRYC (5.41) –

      Yes, the inquiry transcripts are published.

      See my earlier comment (12.54) for extract featuring Ballie vs Evans.

    314. AdamH says:

      James Che

      A told me that B found out that C did X,Y and Z

      That’s hearsay and is not allowed in court.
      Furthermore, if you stand up and say it and you can’t prove it then YOU may end up in court for defamation.

      That’s why its taken Stu so long to get this much out.
      That’s why AS has had to wait and wait (because JW is blocking the proof).

      Suggest you get off your high horse. After all – what have you ever done for Independence?

    315. holymacmoses says:

      Effijy says:
      15 January, 2021 at 5:49 pm
      Nicola Sturgeon as SNP leader has seen off:

      Nicola Sturgeon hasn’t seen anybody off – they have all been utterly useless and the ones remaining still are – it has nothing to do with Sturgeon except that in the kingdom of the average the person with one point above average rules.

    316. Captain Yossarian says:

      @Effijy – Do not kid yourself. Nicola Sturgeon has broken the Ministerial Code and she has broken Criminal Law. She undoubtedly has a brass neck and that has taken her far, but it stops now I’m afraid.

      ‘You cannot kid all of the people all of the time.’

    317. The Oui Coupar says:

      Two posts stand out for me today

      Ian Mac at 1.23pm. This expresses what I believe is, and will be, the real and moral reaction of an electorate as the cookie crumbles in front of them. En masse people will not step forward to board the Indy train.

      Breeks at 8.27. Amidst the noise of general reaction Breeks has, consistent with his previous style of response, shown an innate sense of what could, and should, be done in a given situation. A back to basics approach through a reconvened National Assembly, to determine and lay out that principle and diligence through which an Independent Scotland can be fulfilled and operate, in order that all the unsatisfactory circumstances that are coming to light with party politics, policing and civil service are kept in check.
      Further and more significantly Breeks proposes a program of actions at UK and International level that could be mandated and co-ordinated from the Assembly in order to actually advance the cause.

      Where do I sign …..?

      The realisation has come that the SNP executive has become a monster feeding itself, and that there will be no chance now of persuading my Indy sceptic acquaintances to revisit their preferences.
      As a personal input to the discussion surrounding an upper or revising chamber, my suggestion is that individuals could be drawn on a day release basis from the elected officers of local authorities. This may help to put a brake on the centralising tendencies of governments , and to encourage local competence and citizen participation in local issues.

    318. kapelmeister says:

      Alf Baird @5:23

      Alf, a very interesting question you address in your excellent book is the fact that the Irish Republic is today officially considered a former colony by the United Nations.
      That I did not know. Not was I aware that the U.N. has a list of nations that await decolonization.

      Scotland, as you have written, ought to be on that U.N. list. It seems to me that there are many in the SNP who want independence, but only via a maintainance of the fiction that Scotland has been a union partner and not a colony. It’s as if it’s too much of an injury to their pride to consider themselves as colonial subjects.

      Yet, a colony is what Scotland is. The proof is all around us , always there. A shift from regarding ourselves as British citizens with full rights to the realization that we are colonial subjects would, I believe, act as a force magnifier in our struggle to be free.

    319. Wee Chid says:

      Lorna Campbell says:
      15 January, 2021 at 3:45 pm

      Subscribed. Thanks.

    320. kapelmeister says:

      Sturgeon’s corruption has happened under the so called union, and she is very much a creature of that so called union. Posters on here who are advocating a parking of the independence struggle so we can pompously dream up ideas and programmes for a utopian Scotland are naive.

      Hasn’t Sturgeon been talking of “parking indy”. Now your doing it. Winning independence is always hard and very messy. Forget utopias and let’s get on with business.

    321. holymacmoses says:

      I think that the people of Scotland will absolutely go for Independence if they find out that what Sturgeon has done and how well Mr Salmond has behaved throughout the whole messy deal. Those who doubt that Independence is there for the taking, doubt the people of Scotland.

      False
      Expectactions
      Appearing
      Real.

      Fear is the key to failure.

    322. Hugh Jarse says:

      “Freeman accused of breaching the Ministerial code” screams Auntie.

      For giving the location of the chocolate factory!

      Can you see where were going with this?
      Clue. Priti P

    323. Mist001 says:

      Every single MSP is complicit in this because not one single one has stuck their head above the parapet and declared ‘This is wrong’. If they don’t condemn this behaviour from the First Minister, then they condone it.

      And you think these people are fit to deliver independence or run an independent Scotland when they’re battening down their own hatches and keeping their heads down?

      Look at the guys track record, as someone famous once said.

    324. Alf Baird says:

      Lorna Campbell @ 3.26

      ““I didn’t move to Scotland for independence. I moved for a better life”.

      Yes Lorna, and as Albert Memmi defined the motivation of the colonial: “..leaving for a colony..is simply a voyage towards an easier life.”

      Independence and hence decolonisation tends to be the last thing on their mind.

    325. mike cassidy says:

      Give yourself a wee break and a laugh

      It was funny enough when UKIP announced its London Mayoral candidate is called Peter Gammons

      But its even funnier when you read about a miracle-worker guy who left The Brexit Party because it was too politically correct

      https://archive.is/utCxW

    326. Robert Hughes says:

      Lorna Campbell – good luck and good on you . Not on Twitter but if I can help in any way I will gladly do so .

      With the clarity of thought and purpose your comments always display I’m sure you’ll have no problem gathering support .

      More power to you and every woman in this existential struggle

    327. Liz says:

      kapelmeister @ 6.17

      No one is talking about parking indy. More that NS and her cohorts should go now so that we can get on with indy. It’s never going to happen with her at the helm anyway. By ignoring it all it will come out in the open at a time of the unionists choosing which will beconsiderably more damaging.

    328. ben madigan says:

      @ kapelmeister who mentioned “the fiction that Scotland has been a union partner and not a colony”

      The fiction is maintained by 1) the name of laws like “Act of Union” and 2) admission of Scottish MPs to Westminster.

      No “real colony” like India or Nigeria ever had the privilege of sending MPs to Westminster.
      Furthermore lack of representation there was one of the reasons for the American Revolution

    329. Alf Baird says:

      kapelmeister @ 6.02

      Thanks for that. On whether or not Scotland is a colony, as The Corries used to say: “If the shoe fits, wear it.” Scotland as we can see is very much treated as a powerless colony by Westminster, and the unleashing of British state ‘forces’ (Scottish Government, COPFS, police, etc) against Alex Salmond and other notable independence campaigners is part and parcel of our colonial oppression.

      Yes, as you say decolonization remains a UN priority and the Scottish people have every right to use that route to independence. Plaid’s leader Adam Price has no qualms about describing Wales as an English colony (‘Wales: The First and Last Colony’), which makes you wonder why the SNP refuse to do the same and instead pander to the colonizer?

      If I was Scotland’s FM I would have had Michael Russell and his team parked at the UN Decolonization Committee (C-24) years ago, rather than waste their time going back and forth pleading with ‘mother country’ colonial HQ in London.

    330. Craig Murray says:

      I am not sure whether Robin or I made the most speeches around the country during Indyref 14. I suspect Robin. But we both made a very great deal more than Sturgeon, Robertson or Blackford. Whle the Wee Blue Book was the biggest single vote winner of the campaign.

      Apparently Robin, Stu and I are all unionist plants.

    331. Ron Maclean says:

      ‘There must be reform of governance in Scotland and a root and branch review of the civil service and its agencies.’

      It would be helpful if those who don’t want Utopia would tell us what an acceptable level of corruption is and how they propose we achieve it.

    332. holymacmoses says:

      Apparently Robin, Stu and I are all unionist plants.

      You are indeed Mr Murray . And with a bit of luck the rare plants that you are will be able to settle your roots into the soil of an Independent Scotland sooner rather than later. It’s getting time for Wings to come back home.

    333. Audrey Simpson says:

      Thank you for laying this out so clearly. I’m sad and mad but you are absolutely right that I wouldn’t want our independence journey to come from this. We must be better than this.

    334. Saffron Robe says:

      James Che,

      Robin has spoken out many times before, written many exemplary articles and has been highly critical of Nicola Sturgeon for a long time now. We are all on the same side, it is only the style that differs. Both Stuart and Robin are inimitable in their own way and our cause is enhanced considerably by having them both on our side.

      As a monist/pantheist it is like the Gods and Goddesses. They are not in competition with each other. Blend them together and their (individual) effulgence is not diminished but magnified.

    335. Lorna Campbell says:

      Stuart/Truth: I did not set this up, and I would never take any credit for it. I am still at the stage of researching it and its prospects. I read about it on Mumsnet, actually, which is a great source of material for anyone interested in a load of topics, but you must be careful to sift through stuff and avoid the fools’ gold. That is why I am researching just now to find out more. I had heard that some women were thinking of calling for the 2004 GRA to be scrapped as unnecessary, and leading to more and more demands that cannot be accommodated without destroying half the planet’s population’s right to exist. Moves, by, I think, the LGB Alliance, which has broken with the LBTQI+++++ Alliance, are also afoot to get Stonewall and the other extreme trans groups out of mainstream trans issues, but I’m not sure. Anyway, there does appear to be a fightback on the way.

      I am in agreement that the 2004 GRA is unnecessary, though, and is in conflict with the 2010 Equality Act, and that is my particular beef. The GRA reform would basically, cancel the 2010 Act without any discussion or reappraisal, and that is utterly undemocratic. We have to go back to basics, because the trans mess would not have come about had the 2004 GRA not been instituted to try and get round same sex marriage. Had the legislators just allowed same sex marriage earlier, this mess could have been avoided. I have no problem with genuine body dysphoria people, or any problem at all with people wishing to live their lives as they please.

      The trans lobby, though, has leapt on this and will not let it go because it will allow cross-dressers, drag queens, fetishists, etc. free access to women’s spaces and rights, while, squeezing out natal women. The motivation, when you take into account trans sportswomen, trans women trying to muscle in on boards places, etc., must be misogynistic. Anyone with two brain cells to spark off each other should have known that this would happen when an extension of the 2004 GRA was mooted. Stonewall and the other more extremist trans lobbyists just won’t stop until they are stopped. It was always going to come to this. I really think they thought that women would just crumble.

    336. Lorna Campbell says:

      Alf: again, I have no problem with rUK people who make Scotland their home – just so long as they understand that our right to self-determination is absolute in international law and that we do have our own culture and ways of doing things. I made a point of asking people how long they had been in Scotland. Many had been here fewer than ten years, so I then asked: and you knew that there was a party in power that’s raison d’être was independence? That usually made them stop and think. Challenging deep-rooted assumptions must be done, and the SNPG has been woefully lacking in that area. Being heavy-handed won’t work, but neither does reinforcing their erroneous assumptions. I see the more extreme trans lobby as colonists who wish to colonize women’s spaces. The parallels are there.

    337. kapelmeister says:

      Liz @6:59

      Like youself, I’m not for ignoring it. Sturgeon must go, the sooner the better. You say no one is talking of parking indy. Well one or two here were making noises that sounded like it. Perhaps you simply hadn’t read every post.

    338. Robert Grant says:

      Stephen Sustad says:
      14 January, 2021 at 8:44 pm
      Very very sad. My one question. Why all this effort to hobble Salmond? He had moved off the scene.

      Simple answer is that its clear revenge best served cold, for Alex decision to run again for the leadership after Johns resignation putting Nicola’s nose well out of joint.

    339. Dan says:

      @ Effijy at 4.42pm

      You mentioned Martin Keatings and PeoplesAS30

      https://twitter.com/andywightman/status/1350153211907338244

    340. katherine hamilton says:

      Wee slightly O/T but connected thought. I reckon the Slab rump read Wings eagerly. Lots of comments over the past several months about not voting SNP because…..
      Leotard has resigned for what reason? He has become the story! Ha Ha. Monica Lennon has thrown her hat in the ring. Was she not the one some time back saying there should be a referendum if that’s what Scots want. I can’t see the millionaire winning the contest. So Monica wins and change of policy for May supporting a referendum. Same policy as SNP. Aim- to get former Labour types (like me) to come back to the fold, giving a choice of Labour 1, ISP 2. Job Done. Get your referendum. No need for Nicola.

    341. Chris says:

      Nicola Sturgeon will retire (after the climate shindig in Glasgow) due to the stress of handling the Chinese disease.
      After resting, she’ll begin her world saving job at the UN as Lady Fish of Dreghorn.
      She’ll continue her fight for independence from within the UK House of Lords.

    342. Dan says:

      @ katherine hamilton.

      Well, this time last year Monica said: “decisions about Scotland’s future within the UK should ultimately be a matter for Holyrood, not Westminster”… Which is more than some SNP politicians seem to think or say…

    343. Jack says:

      I knew nothing good would come from a loner radicalised in her bedroom.

    344. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      “Indy activist from Rosyth who named Alex Salmond complainers on Twitter faces possible jail sentence”

      https://www.dunfermlinepress.com/news/19014924.indy-activist-rosyth-named-alex-salmond-complainers-twitter-faces-possible-jail-sentence/

    345. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Looks like the DR was picking over an old story…

    346. Grendel says:

      Two things.
      Firstly, since publication of this article Robin has been the subject of he said/she said slurs himself by @GalloglySwan. Is everyone who defends Alex Salmond to be subject to the same dirt throwing? It looks like it.

      Secondly, the fact Mr McAlpine was made aware of the details of the campaign against Mr Salmond two years ago may have been done in confidence. Perhaps he simply respected the wishes of the person who confided in him?

    347. Bob W says:

      A corker if a letter from Alex’ legal team to Ms Fabiani.

      https://mobile.twitter.com/GraceBrodie/status/1350160837105885189

    348. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Lorna Campbell (8.14) –

      Just a ‘thanks’ – you manage to ‘explain’ it all so well without even trying.

      😉

    349. James Che. says:

      A lot of people on here are quite right, placing fingers in ears and shutting their eyes is not a way forward.
      and a awful lot of you are wrong in supposing I was ever a snp supporter or member, like a few others on here whom state Scotland’s independence first, personalities second, that’s my stance.
      It is not I who has become blind or deaf, I was on many Scottish blogs as far back as 2017 trying to inform everyone of a number of false flag snp politicians sitting in holyrood and in local councils.
      That was before the Alex Salmond case.
      Having predicted how the snp were infiltrated and what direction they were headed in, I can pretty much predict how effective they will be over the next year.
      I can also predict that it will take the people here in Scotland an awful long time to realise no matter what, the next new chosen party for Scotland will have another Danial de foe moment to. Seemly well spoken politicians posing as Friends while selling you, and info down south.
      Holyrood is a devolved government, employees from the other side, what did you expect.
      It is not our goverment, it’s englands with their permission.
      ,

    350. David Sharpe says:

      I find it sad that there are people still using twitter a thing, (and I mean a thing I have never subscribed to).
      Do they not value freedom of speech at all, we have to make sure this and other platforms that censor willy nilly for no other reason than political bias are left to rot in their own dirty juices.

    351. James says:

      annadice Boy says:
      15 January, 2021 at 4:00 pm
      @LeggyPeggy 3:47pm
      “…Perhaps Scottish Family Party-Putting Families First that stood in East Dunbartonshire has reapplied as solely Scottish Family Party?…..No matter it is good to see alternative voting opportunities.”

      Really? Vote for a right-wing, anti-abortion shower of zealots? Thanks but no thanks.

    352. StuartM says:

      Two things jump out from that Daily Record story:
      https://archive.is/NYH7p

      Firstly “Hosie was forced to stand down as SNP deputy leader when First Minister Nicola Sturgeon – a close pal of Robison – made it clear his career was over in all but name”.

      So if you cross Sturgeon or one of her pals you’re out. Kinda shows NS’s management style – revenge and intimidation.

      Secondly the link to the related “Read More” story:
      “Nicola Sturgeon would accelerate IndyRef2 plans if new prime minister opts for harder Brexit”

      Well, we all know how that worked out don’t we.

      One further thought. Before Scotland becomes independent you need to clean up the corruption in the Party, Government and COPFS first. There’s no reason to believe that Nicola Sturgeon, Hunza Youssef or James Wolffe are suddenly going to change their behaviour just because independence was declared. If you don’t trust Nicola Sturgeon and Humza Youssef over the Hate Crime bill, why on Earth would you trust them to write the Constitution for an independent Scotland?

    353. Gregor says:

      MyPillow

      I think you could be onto something (time will tell)…

    354. Mr C M Howie says:

      Read about half. Tbh I don’t really give a fuck. I support independence not the SNP and have every faith in the people of Scotland, not NS, to make a success of themselves. Everything else is just noise and the SNP are just a means to an end.

      AS isn’t going to jail and these people will be gone the minute we’re independent, so everything is secondary to that.

    355. Mr C M Howie says:

      It seems people agree with me

      https://www.thenational.scot/news/19017377.ongoing-sturgeon-vs-salmond-saga-no-real-effect-voters-pollster-says/?ref=twtrec

      All this pish about independence has to be based on integrity blah blah blah save it for a birthday card its fuckin nonsense.

      Independence is based on self-determination, nothing else. Its just putting the power over what happens here into the hands of the people that live here.

    356. Alan Murphy says:

      Wow…some folk think for a living and see great depth in situations around them. I fix things. Well done Stuart.
      A most rewarding article.

    357. beflox says:

      Yes carry on – shouldn’t be too long now before the Wings followers are storming Parliament shouting “Hang Nicola”.

      Good job.

    358. Saffron Robe says:

      beflox,

      No, of course, it’s better to hound and crucify an innocent man.

    359. Pippa Plevin says:

      And because of this article Robin has had to resign as director of Common Weal, jeezo it just gets worse…
      It will be the cover up that will get them in the end I’ve no doubt about it.

    360. Gerald Kavanagh says:

      From C M Howie:
      “All this pish about independence has to be based on integrity blah blah blah save it for a birthday card its fuckin nonsense.
      Independence is based on self-determination, nothing else. Its just putting the power over what happens here into the hands of the people that live here.”
      Nowt like plain speaking! I applaud.
      I would only add that putting ‘power’ in the hands of the people means phasing out politicians in short order and retraining them for real jobs while bringing about governance by an assembly of citizens ultimately selected by lot with all major decisions decided by referenda,such as 1) taxation. 2) wars or dispatch of military abroad 3) immigration 4) nuclear weapons 5) major laws 8) direct election of official. Independence is the precondition for this, in short Direct Democracy. (N.b referenda examples copied from tract by John Lowrie of Solidarity Scotland)..



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