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Wings Over Scotland

The missing questions

Posted on June 19, 2014 by

A number of papers today report a manufactured furore concerning some comments we made on Twitter a couple of days ago about Tory MSP Alex Johnstone while watching Scotland Tonight. The Herald, astonishingly, makes it the second-lead story on its website, with political editor Magnus Gardham gleefully seizing the opportunity to stick the boot in after being the subject of much criticism on this site.


The Times also has a large piece about the tweet and it gets a quarter page in the Daily Mail, while the Scotsman’s coverage is more muted – which is perhaps out of embarrassment at coming on the same day the paper had to grudgingly publish a belated correction and “apology” for two grotesque and utterly false smears about us last week. Even Holyrood Magazine gets in on the act, as does the Courier.

That’s all fine and good. Getting monstered by Unionist newspapers isn’t exactly a new experience for us, after all. But there’s something odd about all of the stories.

And that’s the fact that we weren’t contacted by any of them for a quote. In this kind of situation, and especially when making a big deal of the incident, any competent journalist will always ask the “offender” for a quote, in the hope that they’ll either apologise or say something offensive again, either of which makes for a better story.

(Or that they’ll decline, enabling the paper to say that “X refused to comment”, which makes the perpetrator look shifty, whereas not apparently even attempting to get the other side of the story makes the newspaper seem unprofessional and biased.)

But none of them did, and readers might be wondering why. The answer can be found in the reply the one paper that DID ask for a comment on the issue yesterday – Aberdeen’s Press & Journal – got when it emailed yesterday asking if I regretted the comments and wanted to say sorry.

No, I don’t. We’ve never been abusive to an individual on Wings Over Scotland in two-and-a-half years of the site’s existence, but we made an exception for Alex Johnstone because of his despicable attacks on a couple of ordinary, decent Scots who’ve done untold amounts of good for worthy causes and have never sought the public eye.

When he retracts and apologises for the disgusting comments he made about Chris and Colin Weir I’ll withdraw my view that he’s scum.”

Did you spot it, folks? We weren’t asked for a response because if we had been, the media would have been obliged to  report it, and in doing so to draw people’s attention to the reason that we describe Alex Johnstone, alone among MSPs, in the way we do.

It would have had to remind readers of the fact that Mr Johnstone attacked ordinary, decent members of the public in a far worse manner than Campbell Gunn did last week, for which Gunn was pilloried by the press in blanket print, TV and radio coverage for days on end while Johnstone got off scot-free for his attacks.

Today’s furore is in every paper on the basis of a single quite rude tweet from our Twitter account, which has under 14,000 followers and is known for being much more knockabout and likely to be sprinkled with occasional swearies than the site itself. It was only retweeted 15 times and nobody paid much attention to it except, ironically, a couple of Labour politicians bleating that we were being beastly to a Tory.

Yet we called Johnstone FAR worse (“arsehole”, “sewer-dwelling vermin”disgusting, arrogant, patronising, condescending piece of toilet-scraping” and “repellent sack of filth in a suit” ) over a month ago, far more prominently, in an article that was read over 50,000 times, and there wasn’t a dicky-bird in the press about it.

(We were asked about it at the time by Scotland Tonight in an interview recorded for TV. We explained the reason. That interview was never broadcast either.)

Why? Because if the media had reported that they’d have also had to cover the reason we said it, whereas with the tweet they could separate the two and pretend it was unprovoked. And sure enough, the P&J – the only paper we gave a quote to, in which we mentioned the Weirs – is one of the few that DOESN’T cover the story today.

Journalists getting their own back on us for spending much of the last two and a half years exposing their misdeeds is all well and dandy. We dish it out and we can take it, and on this occasion (unlike the lies printed in several articles in the Scotsman in the last week) we at least did actually say the thing we’re accused of saying.

But the telling, and far more important, aspect is that in having a go at us, Scotland’s media is still careful to distort the independence debate by amplifying rudeness from the Yes side while completely whitewashing much worse abuse from the No side. Readers can, as ever, draw their own conclusions from the evidence.

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  1. 19 06 14 09:18

    The missing questions | Scottish Independence News

415 to “The missing questions”

  1. Findlay Farquaharson says:

    i thought johnstone was scum before the weir comments, a gluttonous greedy pig of a man. i think your comments are pretty bang on.

  2. JLT says:

    The Better Together mob are now in full rage mode now. Debate is no longer part of the rules. They don’t want it! They just want it silenced. That is the new rule of the game we are about to have. For in silence, Better Together will happily debate …as long as no one is talking, therefore no one is listening, and therefore people are not being influenced towards Yes.

  3. James says:

    Cancelling my Herald online membership today

  4. JLT says:

    Rev …having problems posting. You got server probs?

  5. Mike says:

    The Spin from the Herald is the claim that the Yes campaign is distancing itself from this site. I take every article from the Herald within a spectrum of a pinch of salt to all out disbelief. Perhaps you can clarify this?

    Gardham has form when it comes to publishing No campaign propaganda as news.

  6. R whittington says:

    Sensible Soccer?

  7. JLT says:

    They don’t want to debate now. It’s silence that they want.

  8. JLT says:

    Rev …seems I can only post one line answers. Very odd.

  9. Martin says:

    Despite the fact that he has acted like scum, the insult was always bound to result in this. After all your encouragements to be alert, I’m sad to say I think you dropped the ball on this one. If you were hoping for a chance to explain the comment with a view to reigniting the Weir’s plight, you probably should have seen this coming. The MSM were never going to ask you for a comment, it doesn’t suit their agenda. The original tweet was the place to mention his shameful crime. Calling him a liar and renowned troll may have been ok. Fat troughing scum? That’s just playing into their hands.

  10. Capella says:

    Perhaps a comparison of the readership of these scurrilous rags with the growing readership of this site and others explains their panic attack.

  11. Mike says:

    There are actually relatively very few MPs and MSPs I would classify as not being troughing scum.

    I see Alex Johnston as just another typical example of the type of worthless self serving individual encouraged and drawn into the halls of power and so called public service.

    There appears to be no standards of quality to the type of people who do end up in public service.

    No ethical requirements no filtering of moral standards.
    Its a system of patronage and privledged invitation of membership.

    Its no wonder there are no real standards.

  12. Chris Darroch says:

    Excellent article Rev. High quality rejoinder with superb balance and tone.

  13. kendomacaroonbar says:

    Excellent piece Rev. Thank you.

  14. Another Union Dividend says:

    There is one rule for No and another for Yes in the Labour establishment media in Scotland and the rightwing UK media. Better Together.

    O/T According to the UK’s Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), the RuK’s national debt is £4.8 trillion once state and public sector pension liabilities are included, or £78,000 for every person in the UK. This number translates to about 330% of UK’s GDP

    There is no hope any of these will ever be paid down. And with government spending soon to focus ever more on such things as paying down interest, instead of investing in what could truly push the economy to a new level such as R&D spending.

    New EU accountancy rules means that UK government will have declare the full extent of its liabilities for off balance sheet items such as PFI etc

  15. Clootie says:

    I no longer consider them journalists.

    They are “political officers” little better than those attached to every part of the machine during Stalins rule.

    The decline in newspaper readership is only party due to developments in technology. A great deal of the decline has been due to the discovery that they are manipulating the news not reporting it.

    Does anyone care what a newspaper reports in Scotland? I never buy a newspaper now.

    One thing it does highlight is the quality of the members of the Scottish Government – can you imagine how much digging these unionist scoundrels have undertaken to find some material that they can spin. I’m afraid you are part of that target group now Stu so look out for yourself ( always assume a mike is on!)

  16. JLT says:

    Better Together are now in full on rage mode. They don’t want to debate. They would prefer it if we just all remained silent. The questions we pose, are far too difficult to answer. The gap in voting intentions is closing, and because of that, they are panicking. Now, it’s just an all out shriek against anything to do with ‘Yes’.

    Just one thing, Rev. I would lighten up on the name calling. I think that may not have helped.

  17. alistair says:

    As a long time reader/supporter of this site , and in the context of how short a time there is to the vote, my view is that we need to rise above and move on from all this “cybernat” furore. Now is not the time to be referring to anyone as scum. It just plays into the MSM agenda and offends a lot of potential Yes voters out there – you may not agree. But for those of us out there on the doorsteps then the constant MSM coverage of this does not help. Even worse when YesScotland asks for removal of leaflets as it looks like there is some sort of split in the camp. By all means continue to expose the hypocrisy of the No Camp MP’s but there’s a way and a means of doing this that is helpful, not unhelpful.

  18. Mike says:


    This site was due for condemnation no matter what it did or didnt do. The No campaign doesnt require a justified complaint in order to manufacture and present a complaint via a compliant and fully representative media to their cause.
    It is irrelevant whether the complaint is real or not as the compaint will be presented in exactly the same manner.

    Theyve already cried Wolf so many times a real complaint wont register with a tired and fed up with it all electorate anymore.

  19. Cyberniall says:

    Did Susan Dalgety not tell you how the Scottish Media works?

  20. Stevie says:

    Well said. The ‘YES campaign’ distancing itself… what ‘YES campaign’? It is only in existence because all those on the ground knocking doors, posting leaflets and holding community meetings – these people are congratulating your website.

    Love Blair Jenkins because he brings freshness and clear ideas communication to the campaign but the rest is non-existent.

  21. Ken500 says:

    Success always brings jealousy

    Wings more successful than the whole biased Unionist ‘Press’. Like most bullies they can give it out, but don’t like it back.

    More power to your elbow, more ink in your pen. YES

  22. Ken500 says:

    YES campaign will have be mis quoted, as usual.

  23. Mike says:


    There is no avoiding the smearing no matter how much you try to.
    You dont have to give the No campaign any jusfitication in order for them to present a complaint. If they cant find one they will simply manufacture one from nothing.
    The No camp have made so many false claims of abuse that they can no longer point the finger at genuine claims of abuse with any hope of effect.
    The electorates capacity for bullshit is over subscribed.
    There is no room for anymore.

  24. Zorbathejock says:

    Well he is fat and scum floats to the top (he’s the Tory whip,or was) so what’s the problem?

  25. henry hooper says:

    Rev…do you have links where AJ terms them fools, morons and liars?

  26. Iain says:

    It appalls unionist journalists and politicians that WOS and other sites are beyond their control, reaching a large audience, and circulating news and criticism which, in their view, should not be known or expressed. If people know what they should not, where will it all end?

    The description of Alex Johnstone was a bit rude, and it’s better not to give them ammunition. But what you’ve done in exposing the falsehoods, ommissions, double standards and dishonesty of the MSM which purports to serve Scotland has been magnificent.

  27. heraldnomore says:

    Ah Gardham wrote it. ‘Nuff said.

    And presumably the paper that was once a fine read is sticking with the line that Woking’s more a base for proud scottery than Bath.

    Did said Herald ever investigate Johnstone’s comments on the Weirs? Thought not.

    Stick with it Stu, or you’ll get a doin’.

  28. Peter Mirtitsch says:

    WHO exactly did Campbell Gunn ATTACK, and how.? I ask, since he never made any accusations about behaviour per se, and only tweeted a couple of things, one of which was perfectly true, exposing a falshood, and the other which was false, due to not checking up properly.

  29. James Sneddon says:

    Martin – I don’t think Rev ‘dropped the ball’ on this one. Experience shows that the media and politicos will gang up on someone by either publishing lies and smears often made up. Stu knows this and knew his tweet would incur this type of response. They can’t get him on the facts he publishes but for once they can smear him on what he actually said. But people aren’t that stupid. In these cases they’ll pick up the ‘offender’ hasn’t been asked for their response as is normal. Stu ,again, highlights the scottish MSM/Holyrood bubble in action. File this story under ‘unsubstantiated rubbish’ People who come to this sight (thanks to all the free publicity from MSM) will find out why Johnstone was slagged off. Isn’t strange the MSM haven’t published anyone else having a go at Johnstone for his attacks on the Weirs for the reasons stated in the story by Stu. Stu has the measure of what the MSM is like and true to form they are so predictable.

  30. David Agnew says:

    seems they are trying to find a new way of getting mileage out of an old canard. Its an extraordinary display of swivel eyed dishonesty that leaves you breathless.

    But its the belief that they can walk away from all this, without nothing being said yes or no, that boggles the mind.

  31. manandboy says:

    Spot the (deliberate?) mistake on BBC Democracy page

    Independence, Ms Sturgeon said, was key to securing the future of public services.

    She said: “The simple fact of the matter is that this is a choice between two futures – between hope, ambition and optimism on the one-hand and dreary, dismal depressing outlook on the other.”

    (Mistake coming up) “Scotland’s public services face two futures in 2014. The future after a Yes vote where all the experts agree we will face renewed austerity over and above what we already face, and cuts to schools and hospitals as a consequence. Or we could face a different future if Scotland votes No.”

    Ms Sturgeon said Ms Lamont was “out of touch” with her own supporters, displaying a “depressing, dismal lack of ambition”.

  32. JPJ2 says:

    A net gain from all this from Wings. Even more readers who will be impressed by the quality of the articles.

    “Wings”, like Salmond himself, is a very effective campaigner for Yes, hence the demonising of both by the unionists.

    There is negligible honesty in unionism-the BIG LIE is their stock in trade.

    By, in effect, supporting the poisonous comments of Alex Johnstone against the Weirs, the unionist press again reveal that there are no depths to which they will not plummet in support of their unionist masters.

  33. bunter says:

    Maybe a wee factual reminder of what this guy said about the Weirs is in order, that we can share.

    Will the state broadcaster pick this up, and if so, will they give a right of reply?

  34. alistair says:

    I don’t disagree and like Iain I agree its fantastic that the double standards and dishonesty are being exposed. All I’m saying is that we shouldn’t add to the slagging – its what the press need to drag this on and on. Exposing AJ’s comments about the Weir’s will help get the odd Yes vote, so let’s reply with that. Calling him names won’t get a Yes vote. The only thing that matters here is converting undecided and No voters.

  35. Cyberniall says:

    Hopefully a Yes representative will be on the telly to put your point across about the abuse he gave the Weirs.

    You could always tweet evidence to the papers.

  36. Sanz says:

    But why the feck did you have to use that word and give the media another Nat-bashing story? I recently pointed my YES voting sister-in-law at Wings, and yesterday she said to me “I see that Wings over Scotland site has been getting into trouble”.

  37. bookie from hell says:

    why use the word fat,and scum?

    2-0 to Alex Johnstone

  38. bunter says:

    Oh and I wonder if this is another deflection after yesterdays debunking of the UK propaganda about to drop thru our letterboxes.

    That’s the stuff they are scared of, so lets keep sharing that.

  39. With the World Cup playing out in the background of the campaign, a football comparison to what is happening at the moment seems appropriate. I am a Liverpool fan and I have had a season ticket at Anfield for just over 40 years. Last season we nearly defied all sensible odds to take the title by playing the kind fearless football that isn’t supposed to win titles. It was so near but in the end so far. So what happened? Chelsea happened. Jose Mourinho happened. He twigged onto the fact that if he sent his multi-million pound team out onto the Anfield pitch to take us on in an open football match he would have got hammered. So he chose not to play ball. Instead he drilled his troops to cheat, dive, niggle, waste time and generally represent complete anti-football. Our young team failed to rise above it. We got bogged down in their unrelenting nastiness. We lost our rhythm and confidence and in the end our captain made a mistake that cost us the title. More and more Better Together seem to be following the Mourinho playbook. They obviously know only too well that if they to take on ‘Yes’ in a clean, square go fight on the real issues there will only be one winner. That is why they are so unwilling to field debate candidates. Their only hope of slowing down the growing momentum of the ‘Yes’ campaign is to drag it down into unedifying squabbling. Elected politicians are of course masters of this. And these are the nasty little games that the British Establishment has mastered over many hundreds of years. Somehow we all need to find the collective discipline to stay above their unrelenting back biting and nastiness. Where should we look for inspiration? That is the easy part. We need to focus on the likes of Mandela and Martin Luther King and Ghandi. No matter how much their enemies tried to tempt them into petty squabbling they managed to retain their class and dignity. The more they stayed above the nastiness, the more pathetic and tawdry they made their opponents look. We hold all the cards here and the voters are waking up to it. All we need to do is avoid being sucked into Better Together’s tawdry little games and thing will be in the bag. The higher ground is all ours – all we need to do is keep hold of it. Oh, and avoid doing a Stevie Gerrard and slipping on the bloody halfway line!

  40. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Sensible Soccer?”

    What about it?

  41. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    The only effect of a mainstream media attack is to amplify the influence of Wings.
    Most of the electorate is not at all thin skinned and all this does is to reinforce opposition in those already opposed.
    The increasing attacks on Wings is testament to its effectiveness.
    All Better Together is trying to do with the the ready assistance of the media is to shore up its existing support not increase it.
    It does not have a natural majority and the key is a huge turnout on referendum day

  42. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “The Spin from the Herald is the claim that the Yes campaign is distancing itself from this site. I take every article from the Herald within a spectrum of a pinch of salt to all out disbelief. Perhaps you can clarify this?”

    If you look closely, all Yes Scotland actually says is that the leaflet has been discontinued, which as far as I know is something that happened ages ago and not as a result of this story. It’s a pretty old leaflet.

  43. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    My posts are disappearing. Help

  44. crisiscult says:

    Fair play getting your site more publicity (free). I don’t usually bother reading the herald articles, just the comments, and noticed a fair few people trying to boost their own flagging confidence in a No vote by labelling readers here as brainwashed.

    Was talking to some ukrainians about their situation here in Ukraine and when they asked about our referendum, they were amazed/nae SHOCKED when I explained that we had almost no newspapers owned in Scotland, no TV channels. Funnily enough, they thought there was a strong risk we’d be brainwashed by the media in such a climate, much as many Russians and pro Russians were being brainwashed by the Russian owned media.

  45. Join the club! –

    Gardham did the dirty on me (wearing another hat) on the front page of the Herald last year. Made no attempt to contact me whatsoever. Made worse by the fact that the Herald refuses to take any of my comments on their articles, no matter how innocuous they may be, and despite me having a perfect record elsewhere on the Disqus forum that they use for readers comments.

    At least you have a loud voice to put your own position in context.

    I urge everyone to make this page as widely available as possible on all forums where they have access. I certainly have.

  46. Ken500 says:

    Surprised when seeing the one(s) calling Alex Salmond ‘a fat arse’. They should look in the mirror. Kettle black.

    Give them it back, they start greeting. Boo Hoo. Boo Hoo.

  47. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Despite the fact that he has acted like scum, the insult was always bound to result in this. After all your encouragements to be alert, I’m sad to say I think you dropped the ball on this one.”

    On the contrary. Either the press asks for a quote and we get to make the point, or they don’t and we get to make the point in an article like this, once again exposing how they operate. It’s win-win.

    If you accept that one of this site’s primary purposes is to teach readers to distrust the press by showing how they distort the truth, the second option is better for us. If we get quoted somewhere down the bottom of the piece, we already know that lots of people won’t read that far. If they make a crude and transparent smear out of it, we have an excuse to highlight that.

  48. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “My posts are disappearing. Help”

    “Rev …seems I can only post one line answers. Very odd.”

    Readers! I’ve said many times that I just don’t have time these days to read every single comment. If you’re having a problem with posting, EMAIL ME THROUGH THE CONTACT PAGE where you have a far better chance of me seeing it. I’ve spotted these ones but often I won’t.

  49. Ken500 says:

    Johnstone/Gardham own goal

  50. Taranaich says:

    It blows my mind (I really must stop using that phrase) that Labour politicians, journalists and the like are leaping to the defense of Alex Johnstone over Stu. Have they no sense of self-awareness?

    The Holyrood Magazine one is particularly reprehensible:

    Calling an MSP “fat troughing scum” is abusive, rude and frankly unimaginative.

    And calling SNP supporters “blood and soil nationalists,” a “virus which has done so much harm,” “fascists” and everything under the sun isn’t “abusive, rude and frankly unimaginative”?!?

    And Johnstone is right to warn that the standard of national debate could be falling into disrepair. But the fault lies on both sides.

    No, Liam, it really doesn’t. Can you point to anything said by the FM, Sturgeon, Jenkins, Harvie, etc that is remotely as offensive as some of the things said by Darling, MacDougall, Lamont, Davidson, Sarwar, et al? Because I think politicians, journalists and campaigners are a bit more influential than some unknown twitterers.

    As Stu rightly pointed out on STV, the tone is set by the campaigners. Yes have been exemplary in their conduct; No have been deplorable. It is offensive to the very concept of impartiality and truth to claim that a few anonymous trolls on the ‘Net and a few salty journalists is remotely comparable to the leaders of campaigns calling ordinary people “blood and soil nationalists,” “fascists,” “Nazis,” a “dictatorship” and God knows what else?

    I cannot be bothered being polite about this, because to even entertain the thought that there’s any sort of balance between the abuse on the sides of Yes and No is tantamount to climate change denial: how can you respect such flagrant disregard for proportion and fact?

  51. Robert Louis says:

    To my knowledge, Rev Stu has NEVER claimed to be part of the formal YES campaign, so why the papers are saying the YES campaign is distancing him, is beyond me.

    It is of course interesting, that as the referendum draws nearer, the biased media are trying to merely smear anybody and everybody who supports independence. Day after day, we have the media attacking YES campaigners.

    I find it very sad, that the entire media are now indulging in what is quite blatant and brazen lying and spin on a daily basis now. They clearly think that since all other attempts to defeat Scottish democratic independence (‘better togehter’, vote no borders’ and so on) have failed, they might as well just tell lies and run silly smear stories.

    So, let’s get out there with OUR positive message for the restoration of Scottish independence, and an end to London rule. We will NEVER have the media on our side, so we must do it ourselves, one by one, person by person.

  52. R whittington says:

    It was a GREAT game. Second only to Monkey Island. Didn’t you have a hand in designing it?

  53. Nick says:

    Just a thought, . . .

    How many people do you reach a day?

    How many people do each of these newspapers reach a day.

    Your site is up and available 24/7 – a Newspaper is tomorrows budgie hoose liner . . .


  54. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    We are about to win and they know it.

    When this personal vilification sledge doesn’t wort, and it will rise to a crescendo of bile and vituperation, they ahve only two tricks left in the bag; Devo SFA and a big black op.

    Nobody must goose one of the Libbet’s corgis!

  55. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    (Also, if you’re having trouble with a post, maybe don’t post a near-identical version TWENTY MORE TIMES, because all that’ll do is make Akismet even more certain that you’re a spambot…)

  56. Dick Gaughan says:

    Just as I went to bed last night I caught “the papers” section of BBC News24 and heard some numptie “professional journalist” explain that the reason Miliband is a failure as Labour leader is because he is “too left wing”.

    I’m now fully convinced I’ve somehow teleported into a parallel universe.

  57. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    “…Scotsman’s coverage is more muted – which is perhaps out of embarrassment at coming on the same day the paper had to grudgingly publish a belated correction and apology…”

    I’d like to see that. Anyone got a link?

  58. Ken500 says:

    All posts disappear. even the one’s recording the disappearance.

  59. Gary says:

    Operation Mass Appeal sorry, Operation Monster

  60. Ken500 says:


    Someone has flown home from football in Brazil, after their family was burgled at knifepoint in London.

  61. bunter says:

    Some stout defenders of WOS on The Herald forum. Can the Rev not request a right of reply on this story, plus keep the site in the public eye at the same time.

  62. Ken500 says:

    Virgin Trains get West Coast line. Scratch Westminster’s back get train track. Quids in.

  63. Neil Craig says:

    I assume that it is not merely coincidence that all these investigative journalists investigated the same story and came to the same conclusion (except the P&J that actually investigated to the extent of asking you and then spiked it).

    I mean if it wasn’t the most incredible coincidence we would have to conclude that virtually the entire MSM consists of churnalists rewriting press releases/briefings from those in government and their assorted quangos, spin doctors etc. and that they are essentially a monolithic propaganda organisation masquerading as a “free press”.

    Bit like they did, up to the EU elections, when virtually every paper was pushing the government propaganda lie that UKIP were “racist” – a lie which, as soon as the election was over, these Fascist scum put back in the box.

  64. Robert Louis says:

    Rev STU,

    On a day such as this when the media are smearing you, you will likely get NEW site visitors. Why not re-run some of your previous articles on aspects of independence, so they will be the first thing seen by those visitors.

    Doing that, more than anything else will demonstrate your facts based forensic analysis to such site visitors, plus it has the added bonus of reminding regulars of some key pieces of information. Could be anything , oil, the economy, pensions, the NHS etc..

    Make this free publicity in the media work for the case for independence, and demonstrate to others your skill and commitment to FACT based articles.

  65. Breeks says:

    This reaction is actually a decent yardstick to gauge how much you are hurting the Unionist campaign. Keep doing what you’re doing Rev Stu.

  66. Ken500 says:

    Herald is ground hog day. Boring. Every day’s the same. One obsessional. Read it once that’s it all. Same old, same old. Yesterday’s news.

    Sunday Herald exceptional.

  67. yerkitbreeks says:

    @ JLT “Just one thing, Rev. I would lighten up on the name calling. I think that may not have helped.”

    I used to tell my children off when they used the word “hate” as applied to someone in their class, or a flavour of ice cream. They meant dislike.

    However I think in the Inde debate there is an important place for Stu’s often controversial takes on what are often fudges. The “correct” language is used admirably by YES’s political leaders, something which sadly has not been seen from their opposite numbers in the last weeks.

  68. manandboy says:

    BTW Stu, be re-assured of the support there is out here for you.
    You don’t have to be perfect. No one expects you to be. Sure, you’ll make the odd mistake here and there, but we all do and most of us far more frequently than you do.

    You won’t need reminding of this but I’m going to remind you anyway. The key is to continue to believe in yourself and in your purpose.

    You are doing a brilliant job. Thank you.

  69. Patrician says:

    Really what did you say about a politician that most people in the UK would disagree with?

  70. Ken500 says:

    Ed ‘youth allowance’?

    One reason for a currency union, Balls will resigned. He should have resigned already, because of the damage to UK/world economy

  71. Dan Huil says:

    Another example of journalistic panic and fear as these “professionals” realize their “ability” and “integrity” are being successfully challenged by sites like WOS, NNS and Bella, etc.

  72. Ken500 says:

    UKIP are confused

  73. Bill McLean says:

    0/T and sorry to repeat myself.Can anyone explain why I can Google “Wings” no problem but if I choose to use IE (which I prefer to use) the site comes up but the page is locked and the notice “Wings over Scotland is not responding” comes up?
    Also been on holiday and out of touch (missus won’t allow me to take laptop) did I read since return that Putin had come out against Scottish independence and what happened to all the threats against Cara Hilton?

  74. Callum says:

    remarking on the physical attributes of Mr Johnstone wasn’t constructive. I’ve never liked it when the insults refer to physical appearance, race or gender.

    .: “Scum” is ok, “fat” isn’t. please behave, you’re just creating an open goal for the unionist press and playing at the same standard as the BT campaign.

  75. Robert Louis says:

    Given the deliberate smearing of winsoverScotland in the ‘scottish’ press today, it is worthwhile noting that NewsnetScotland has an excellent article describing in clear terms the utter hypocrisy and double standards in the media regarding the independence campaign.

    Article here;

  76. galamcennalath says:

    Clearly MSM have coordinated this attack on Wings. It’s understandable that they want to have a go at their most effective critic! They’ve twisted and distorted everything else about this campaign, so they will no doubt unfairly report this so called story.

    I believe the objective to try to force division between Wings and mainstream Yes. Herald already claims distancing.

    We all know that Wings is a huge asset to the Yes campaign by telling the truth. For BT and buddies, Wings is exposing them relentlessly.

    I sense a divide and conquer strategy. They will now be looking for someone in the Yes camp to make a negative comment about Wings, possibly done because they aren’t clued up on the internet.

  77. CyberNiall says:

    It would have been better if the papers HAD asked you for a comment. That way No or Maybe voters would get a chance to see it and not just those who are already Yes…

    It is up to us to spread the message the media won’t!


  78. Mike says:

    Rev Stu

    Thank you for the clarification.
    The Herald seems to reguritate old news as recent news frequently in its seemingly never ending quest to hide real news and avoid the real issues of the day when it doesnt suit their politically motivated agenda.
    State run media indeed.

  79. Ken500 says:

    Someone of the cloth told people not to hate. Now they just detest Bliar. Still no Chilcott verdict or an apology.

  80. donald anderson says:

    Magnus Guard Ham is a “neutral” Unionist who has stopped me buying the paper I used to love.

    His support for London fat cats and Dover House Office cats is well known.

  81. heedtracker says:

    This is all about ukok unionism attacking free and open discourse in Scotland, suck up their weird, twisted teamGEnglandB propaganda, vote no Scotland and don’t talk back you _____ cybernat.”

    It’s probably the biggest weapon they have and very creepy snipes like this only show they’ve lost and they know it.

    Come on England!

  82. scottish_skier says:

    It’s things like this which demonstrate the clear need for a Yes vote.

    The pro-union establishment giving wall to wall free advertising to their opponents. How utterly brainless is that? They might as well have plastered ‘VISIT WINGSOVERSCOTLAND.COM’ all over front pages. In fact, that would probably have been less effective as it doesn’t have the same level of intrigue.

    These people are ‘in charge’. Heaven help us all.

  83. Ian Grant says:

    We have the No campaign on the run. They are now just relying on smears and lies and scandals. I am a great fan of Wings, but that tweet just played into their hands. It served no purpose, it didn’t explain what Johnston had done. It just invited more attacks. On the doorsteps we now have to rebuild our credibility. All for a few careless rude words.

  84. Mike says:

    Rev Stu

    It would be easier for both yourself and your readership if you included reply buttons to individual comments as its difficult to follow the threads of conversions throughout the blog.

  85. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “On a day such as this when the media are smearing you, you will likely get NEW site visitors. Why not re-run some of your previous articles on aspects of independence, so they will be the first thing seen by those visitors.”

    Um, you’ve noticed the big “NEW READERS START HERE” post pinned to the top of the front page, right?

  86. R whittington says:

    It’s a day for both sides to chill out. Find a nice sunny beer garden and relax with a couple of pints and a new book. Get back to the campaign tomorrow refreshed and reinvigorated.

  87. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “It would be easier for both yourself and your readership if you included reply buttons to individual comments as its difficult to follow the threads of conversions throughout the blog.”

    It’s been asked before, but threaded comments are a total mess for all kinds of reasons.

  88. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “It’s a day for both sides to chill out. Find a nice sunny beer garden and relax with a couple of pints and a new book. Get back to the campaign tomorrow refreshed and reinvigorated.”

    Sigh. I hate when people say stuff like this. It’ll be exactly the same tomorrow, and all you’ll have achieved is to waste a precious day.

  89. Sinky says:

    Thanks to Scotland’s Oil bailing out the UK in the 1980s, the UK economy has doubled in size since the early 1980s – yet the number of those suffering below-minimum living standards has grown by more than twice.

    33% of households endure below-par living standards – defined as going without three or more “basic necessities of life”, such as being able to adequately feed and clothe themselves and their children, and to heat and insure their homes. In the early 1980s, the comparable figure was 14%.

    The research, billed as the most detailed study ever of poverty in the UK, claims that almost 18 million Britons live in inadequate housing conditions and that 12 million are too poor to take part in all the basic social activities

  90. Ken500 says:

    EU UKippers are confused.

    Fradge joins far right group of white supremacists and FN members

  91. Scott says:

    Scotsman’s coverage is more muted – which is perhaps out of embarrassment at coming on the same day the paper had to grudgingly publish a belated correction and apology for two grotesque and utterly false smears about us last week.
    Where can I get the link for this apology or better still put it on here so we can all see it,I dont visit the Union Scotsman.

  92. Grouse Beater says:

    The Shame of the Press – grousebeater.wordpress

    Wings a prime target denotes it’s fulfilling its brief too well, namely, draw attention to the lies, black propaganda and colonial mindset endemic in our press and media.

    The service provided by this site has been superlative.

    Personally, I feel ignored. If our noble hacks are intent on kicking their readers around what about the rest of us?

  93. eezy says:

    All of us are going to be labelled Internet Terrorists.
    It’s part of the game.
    I blogged on this non entity too.
    It’s not often I curse in a blog but this lowlife deserved it….

  94. Ken500 says:

    In the UK 5 (tax evaders?) own more than 1/5 – 20% of the population.

    More equal countries are happier, healthier and wealthier.

  95. Tartan Tory says:

    Stu – Whilst I can empathise with your anger at this ‘Tory’, due to his (unreported) attacks on the Weirs, I must admit to having viewed the piece at the time, then read the words ‘soaring above Scottish Politics’, and thought to myself….. “perhaps not on this occasion”…..

    We all make mistakes and I fear that when you dropped the ball there, it landed squarely at their (gutter) level. However, lets not forget that you have been gliding in clean air for 99% of the time and although a reverend, you are obviously not a saint. The halo can slip once in a while.

    Wings will not suffer as a result of this misdemeanor, since the only ones reading about it are the demographic which doesn’t seek the truth outside of the printed media.

    I would urge some caution in one sense though. Whilst I don’t believe that the Yes campaign or the Pro indy side will be clipping Wings over this, I doubt if they will stand-up for anyone who persists with ANY kind of on-line personal / foul-mouthed abuse, regardless of how warranted it may seem at the time.

    Personally, I’d like Wings to be a resource for pensioners and children alike, hence the sensibilities of these people and their guardians need to be considered at all times. We can all swear and be less than guarded with personal comments at times, but I would IMPLORE everyone here to be mindful of the potential for scrutiny at any time.

  96. manandboy says:

    There is a very helpful piece by Peter Arnott on Bella on understanding the Unionist mind and can be found here –

    I must confess I have struggled myself to understand why so many in Scotland would want to oppose what is so blindingly obvious about self-determination and independence.

    Thanks to John Arnott’s piece, I am a good bit closer to understanding the unionist side and as a result I feel a bit stronger.

    paraphrasing – With Yes, we will take Scotland out of the Empire, but it will require much more to take the Empire out of Scotland.

    And finally, the English have never needed to invade Scotland to impose London’s will. They chose infiltration instead, topped up with propaganda. Same result.

  97. Sinky says:

    Interesting article on Newsnet Scotland re BBC and Lallygate

    but I do agree that we should move on and concentrate on the real issues and not get sidetracked by Labour’s agenda of personal attacks.

  98. R whittington says:

    I don’t think it would do any harm though. And a day off relaxing and enjoying the sun is definatly not a day wasted!

  99. Grouse Beater says:

    R Whittington said: It’s a day for both sides to chill out.

    I recall a Richard ‘Dick’ Whittington from the Guardian site. Chilling out wasn’t his speciality – provocation was.

  100. eezy says:

    Tartan Tory says:

    Keep on trolling….

    Don’t feed the Troll folks….

  101. Ken500 says:

    Gardham/Johnstone (list) ‘working’ themselves out of a job.

  102. Camz says:

    The bottom line is that if we are debating people, donations, or politicians, we are not debating the indy issues.

    That suits BT / No, as they have far less of a positive case to make. If Yes mimics the negativity of No, George Orwell’s famous line comes true:

    “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.”

  103. Robert Kerr says:

    Keep up the good work Stu.

    Kindly ask the Tory person to sue or shut up.

    I am certain that a fighting fund would be forthcoming to help you.

  104. Derek M says:

    just keep smiling Rev and laugh at them this was inevitable from those second rate, no third rate journalists ,and i thought your description of Tory MSP Alex Johnstone`s behavior towards the Weirs was an excellent piece of work ,somebody has to take these nasty self serving troughers down and open peoples eyes to their disgraceful behavior, comments like his belittle the entire Scottish political system he is not fit to sit in our parliament.

  105. R whittington says:

    Well I’m not trying to provoke anyone. I guess what I’m trying to say is that BOTH sides of the debate could do with a break.

  106. iain taylor (not that one) says:

    I read the Holyrood Magazine piece yesterday and noticed the bias – in that either WoS wasn’t asked for comment or the comment wasn’t used. It has dropped significantly in my estimation.

    The other publications have no estimation, so nowhere to drop.

  107. Stylishkev says:

    Sorry guys, i’m afraid i’m not with you on this one.
    Just because one person acts in an unprofessional manner doesn’t give you the right too.
    Doing so is equivelant to He called me a poo poo head so i’ll call him a idiot (sticks tongue out and runs away to tell mummy)
    So far you have been very proffessional in the way you report and document the campaign, we know abuse happens from both sides don’t become the thing we hate the most by trying to prompt a reaction to an insult.

  108. Brotyboy says:


    If he were a troll, in what way was your comment not feeding?

  109. Robert Louis says:


    Yeah, I know about your big “NEW READERS START HERE” post at the top of the page (sighs..). Fact is, many people won’t bother clicking it.

    My comment regarding re-running old articles on independence was aimed at the kind of people who come here for the first time, and DON’T read your instructions for new readers. Why not make it easy for them, idiot proof you might say, so it is in their face when the site loads.

  110. Flower of Scotland says:

    You know how sucessful you’ve become when they go at you like that! WOS is a threat to these lying newspapers! You’re doing a great job Stu! You would be more worried if they didn’t mention you at all! Name calling and slurs is about as good as it gets with NOs. They are trying the divide and rule and some on here are falling for it!

    Keep on the good work Stu.

  111. Grouse Beater says:

    Whittington said: BOTH sides of the debate could do with a break.

    From what?

    Self-appointed referees asking them to take a break?

    Stick to your inane, repetitive question, “What about sensible soccer?”

  112. Robert Louis says:


    I agree. All of this is designed to distract people from the referendum. Wings over Scotland has had a powerful effect, so now they want to tie it up in argy bargy he said/she said guff, so wings is no longer doing what it is good at.

  113. Ken500 says:

    Have a break if you want to, for others the struggle for justice will go on.

    Westminster propaganda and biased MSM

    Westminster will not implement the Leveson recommendation, which would give slight redress to the public against the Press, because Westminster wants to keep Press control. The Right wing MSM/ government are in cohoots, against the majority of the people.

  114. Bob W says:

    Funnily enough, I posted a comment on the Holyrood magazine article last night. No abusive language used, queried their views on Johnstone’s comments about the Weirs and questioned whether their article was an example of promoting the articles headline (Guilt by association).

    The comment went into moderation and still hasn’t appeared, I wonder why?

  115. iain taylor (not that one) says:

    BTW, folks.

    You don’t have to agree with a publication 100% of the time to keep reading it.

  116. Anne says:

    having being called a few less than civil names myself when I post (invariably polite) comments on the Guardian’s CiF pages I personally would feel much more comfortable if the debate focussed on the issues than on the people, particularly with respect to name calling. And I say this because women are still underrepresented on the yes side. Keeping the debate as far away from play ground politics as possible can only help. That is not to say that apologies and retractions should not be demanded when appropriate – just that it is better to concentrate on the issues.

  117. HandandShrimp says:


    I would agree that both sides could do with stepping back from pointless abuse. It is depressing that the press focus on the Yes side when we have all seen the No side’s posts fairly disturbing posts about killing Salmond and all the rest. God knows what would happen id we did that.

    However the vast majority of posts on both sides are fine. If England were to fall to Uruguay tonight I am pretty sure that there will be more nasty Tweets aimed at some poor fall guy/victim/Wayne in a hour than in the whole of the independence debate to date. I sometimes think that the paper are oblivious yo how much bile there is out there on the interwebs most of it aimed at some footballer/celebrity/minority group.

  118. Pin says:

    Wonder what the reader stats will look like after all this publicity?

  119. R whittington says:

    @Grouse Beater I think you’ve just proved my point. I’m not ‘ordering’ you to take a days break. Im simply expressing my opinion that a break would be good for both sides.

  120. JWil says:

    This stramash is exactly what the Unionists have prayed for. Trying to blacken the name of one of the few independence supporting publications. The site is just too effective for them at debunking all the lies they tell. Now that they have an excuse they will behave like a dog with a bone.

    On the other hand the Scotsman and the Herald get their fair share of abuse from YES supporters.

    I think that the site must go on. Whatever the reasons may be, there should be even more people looking at the site even if for some of them it’s just out of curiosity at this point.

    We are now into another BBC hyped up controversy in the fact the Scottish Government intends to get Prestwick back on its feet we have the usual culprits like the Scotsman person on the Radio Scotland phone in at the moment, trying to divide the issue along YES and NO lines to get a few marks on the Scottish Government. The whole issue has far more importance to Scotland than having politicians playing silly B’s over the matter.

    We need WoS to go on doing its thorough analyses and telling the other side of the story.

  121. Robert Kerr says:


    No need to repeat old articles. That would be noted by the enemy as a weakness.

    They shall give ample fresh repeats anyway so that topical analysis by your good self can be published.

    Good luck

  122. Robert Louis says:

    Take a look at the comments on Guido Fawkes’ blog, and indeed some of the narrative, and you will see, that ALL this hubris from the media about cybernats and ‘abuse’ is just claptrap of the highest order.

  123. Grouse Beater says:

    Ken 500 said: Westminster will not implement the Leveson recommendation

    Banks and finance houses given 15 years to ‘put their houses in order’ voluntarily. No person goes to jail.

    Tony Blair says, he has no regrets.

    Farage says we will be out of the EU. Who is ‘we’?

  124. Grouse Beater says:

    Whittington said: I’m not ‘ordering’

    And back comes Dick misrepresenting my comment. And will again to ask for an explanation to this one, ad nauseam.

  125. Grouse Beater says:

    Anybody with a distinctive voice is considered a legitimate target by the British press.

    Anybody a consistent and effective dissenter who attracts adherents is a potential enemy of the state.

  126. Vronsky says:

    They spelled your name correctly and got the web site right. So it’s all good.

  127. Malegria says:

    I would HATE to play poker against you Stu…Well done. Another record-breaking week then? And all for no money spent, you wee de’il you!

  128. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    I guarantee I can walk the streets of Dunoon today and meet nobody who has the faintest idea of any of this.
    Like the case of Clare Lally, who will forever now be known as “Ordinary Mum”, the only effect of any coverage of this is that “fat” and “scum” will be associated with Alex Johnstone. They know not what they do.

  129. Elizabeth says:

    I think quite a lot of folk – perhaps older folks – who are recent converts to online reading are shocked when they see personal abuse. It’s maybe satisfying for the writer but I’m not sure it achieves much else. For the record, I despise Alex Johnstone not only for the sleakit rottenness of his insinuations about the Weirs, but also for his every insensitive utterance on the bedroom tax.

  130. Tartan Tory says:

    @eezy “Keep on trolling”


    If you think I’m some kind of troll then I respectfully suggest that you re-read what I posted – perhaps with glasses-on and after a good cup of coffee. As a Wings Saviour, I find it quite sad to think that people are seeing my post and reading something entirely different. Perhaps you disagree with my comment and that’s fair enough, but don’t persist with ‘name calling’ when you are totally wrong.

  131. Peter Macbeastie says:

    R Whittington, whilst I don’t disagree with your general view that we could all use some relaxation sometimes, I have one minor difficulty with it.

    The other side won’t stop, so we can’t stop. Can’t see them agreeing to a ‘hey lads, fancy a break’ request. Now, I know I’m being pedantic here and you’re not suggesting blanket day off for the entire campaign, but the reason we remain focused is because they do.

    I will kick back and properly relax at some point on Friday 19th September, because regardless of the result this stage of the game will be over.

    There is a bottle of Jura laid aside and I’ll have a large stock of homebrewed heavily hopped IPA at around 5% alcohol available to ensure I will be relaxed. Or unconcious. I don’t really mind.

  132. scotswoman says:

    I agree with @bunter – well worth approaching the Herald and requesting a right to reply to the article.

  133. R whittington says:

    @Grouse Beater you described me as a self appointed referee, thereby implying that I am somehow ordering people around. If you look at my comment you will see that I am simply expressing my opinion that both sides could do with a days break. If this is in your eyes provocation then you are waaaaay to easily provoked!

  134. Tamson says:

    Stu, you need to repost the article about Johnstone’s smear RIGHT NOW.

    Not just a link, the full thing. Remember how you keep going on about people not clicking on links, or reading beyond the headline?

  135. manandboy says:

    Mr Johnstone.

    Perhaps after Independence (the voting system is reserved) very serious thought might be given as to how to raise the ethical and educational standards of Scottish politicians.

    While many MSPs and lots of Local Government Councillors are well able and up to the job, many others are clearly out of their depth – and in the wrong job.

    I make no apology for singling out the Labour Party for particular attention, though not exclusively.

    Beginning at the top, Scotland’s Labour politicians are frequently an embarrassment, and often even worse.

    Change. The sooner the better.

  136. Capella says:

    Exposing the propaganda of the MSM is a very necessary part of the YES campaign. If it wasn’t for the brainwashing the answer to the question “Should Scotland be an Independent Country?” would be 100 % YES!
    Great explanation of the opposition to self determination from Naom Chomsky here

  137. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    I earlier asked for a link to the Scotsman’s retraction, and can understand why nobody took me up on it – I can’t even find a mention of Campbell Gunn this year!

    I’m presuming it is in the print edition only? Anyone still buy it…?

    Silly question; however even a scan of it would be a useful arrow in our quiver when they go over the top again.

  138. Grouse Beater says:

    Whittington said: you described me as a self appointed referee,

    And as predicted, back he comes talking about himself. It isn’t about you, nor is it about Stuart.

    We’re trying to regain our nation’s democratic rights.

    A cup of tea, cream bun, and some verbal therapy won’t do it.

  139. R whittington says:

    @Peter Macbeastie agreed & I know what you’re saying re the other side. My view is that a break would reinvigorate, and so would overall be a good thing. Enjoy the IPA.

  140. caz-m says:

    I will not forgive MSP Alex Johnston for justifying the eviction of people with disabilities from their homes because they couldn’t pay the “Bedroom Tax”, which his Tory Party introduced.

    His attitude was that, life is tough, get over it.

  141. Grouse Beater says:

    Conan said: I asked for a link to the Scotsman’s retraction

    Have searched too; one to cut and paste in the journal!

  142. Murray McCallum says:

    I wonder if Rev Stu’s comment was actually robust enough about the bedroom tax supporting and Yes-donating abusing enlarged list member.

    I would like to see the elected member personally explain his support of the bedroom tax directly to the faces of those affected. He should also meet with the Weirs to explain the role of the abuse he directed towards them in his public servant role.

  143. Peter Macbeastie says:

    Much tho I find myself in unusual territory supporting anyone with Tory in their name I find the accusation of trollling against Tartan Tory a little strange here.

    I’ve read the comments; if anyone believes that is trolling they’re mistaken in their definition of what constitutes trolling.

    There’s little in Tartan Tory’s first post that I can disagree with, never mind attack, except perhaps that the attack on the grotty Alex Johnstone was wrong; yes, it gets you down into his pigsty, and of course when you fight with pigs, as the saying goes, you both get dirty and the pig enjoys it. But his position was one of attacking people for donating to the SNP and Yes campaigns and he chose to make that attack personal and that cannot, and should not, be ignored. Perhaps the Rev could have been slightly more temperate with his criticism, but that’s not the same thing as saying it wasn’t deserved in the first place. I agree with the Rev; he absolutely should not withdraw.

    He has stated his position and to withdraw without addressing the reason he went for him in the first place would be a weak, pointless exercise.

  144. Bob W says:

    Oh! lots of comments have now appeared on that Holyrood article, including mine.

  145. R whittington says:

    @Grouse Beater. Well done on your prediction that I would reply to your post describing me as a self appointed referee. You are entitled to your opinions regarding the debate as am I.

  146. caz-m says:

    I stopped buying newspapers a couple of years ago, and if I spy one lying on a table or work place, it gets the full ripped treatment and binned.

    It’s the only humane thing to do to the poor things. Put them out of their misery.

    I have also stopped watching Reporting Scotland and Scotland 2014, it really is good for your health.

    STV news has also been binned.

  147. Angus says:

    The reason that Stu Campbell has chosen his words in this way against the vile Tory MSP is a very good one indeed.

    This sort of main headline story in the comics that dare to call themselves newspapers here is usually picked up instantly by the bbc ‘scotland’ (small ‘s’) the radio: bbc ‘Morning Call’ would have a phone in on it and STV and their bosses in the ‘proper’ bbc and ITV, Sky news etc………

    The problem for the television criticism that would usually emerge is that they will be forced (unlike the newspapers) to have some sort of background story as to what the poor old innocent tory MSP actually said and about whom.

    The Weirs would then be brought into it, and there is no glory or honour for the faux media campaign for a dignified discussion when it is at last properly revealed how the Weirs (and many others) are smeared scandalously not by punters with excellent blogs, or on Facebook, or by individuals on social media but by elected representatives that the media largely ignored because they like to ignore the real story and bullshit the public.

    No apologies from the Rev and no regrets mate!

    Well said and well done-a bit of fighting fire with fire deliberately to show how less keen the media are to report real vile abuse by politicians who think they can say what they like and demonise charitable people with principles is, in my book, spot on!

    Like I said, if the media are daft enough to amplify this story through television they are going to really crash and burn, if they do not then no problem and let’s face it, no loss whatsoever as they are not the friends of those promoting a Yes voter and never will be until they f up and lose.

    The comic book newspapers have knee jerked in an inversely proportional manner, something not only stupendously difficult to do, but in a manner that will haunt them because they rely on the public being as stupid and hypocritical as they are.

    And we aren’t, are we?

  148. Capella says:

    The Chomsky video linked to above is “Who Owns the World” apologies for the link, using a tablet makes life difficult!
    It’s an hour long so plenty time to chill out with a coffee!

  149. Grouse Beater says:

    “Labour to reduce benefits of unemployed youth”


    Another swathe of allegedly work-shy loafers to get the message – the indolent recreation obsessed power elite have all the money. There’s none for you lot.

  150. desimond says:

    If it looks like scum, and it acts likes scum, its scum.

    “Never contradict. Never explain. Never apologize. (Those are the secrets of a happy life!).” –John Arbuthnot Fisher (1841-1920)

    The people playing the sensitivity card make me sigh, almost as much as the grammar peddants (see what i did there?). Its a broad church with a broad tongue..thats what helps make us so dangerous to the unionist Media as they cant handle a diverse audience and always lose.

    Regards the Yes campaign “disowning” Wings. I view Wings more as a special Ops, The Rev gets stuck in and gets dirty expose’ jobs done while “plausible deniability” is offered by Official Yes. The Rev seeks no official reward but it will come, dont you worry.

    Quick Scottish Patter Joke to end with-

    Whats gone on with the Spanish King?
    They had Juan, now he’s gone 😉

  151. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    R whittington

    I will take a break soon, the day after the Referendum vote.

    Thank you for your concern.

  152. Haggis Hunter says:

    We need to rise above media manipulation. Keep the moral high ground, because the Better Together media is trying to drag us down for a mud fight and create voter appathy.

  153. Brotyboy says:

    @ Peter Macbeastie

    Agreed. And I hope the tense I used did not give anyone the idea that I thought him to be a troll.

  154. Garry Coburn says:

    Ouch…..methinks this will have cost us quite a few undecideds ? A better choice of words would have had a better effect…..naughty boy !

  155. R whittington says:

    @Bugger (the Panda) no problem. Do bear in mind that the weather can get nippy in September and its a really nice day today.

  156. desimond says:

    I have no idea what sort of Scotland a lot of people here must live in but if they think that a horrible Tory getting called Scum is likely to lose votes, then its a totally different Scotland to the one I know.

  157. Angus says:

    “We’re trying to regain our nation’s democratic rights.

    A cup of tea, cream bun, and some verbal therapy won’t do it.”

    Too bloody true.

    The tone of the Referendum campaign has been dragged down by the no politicians, the most ‘vile bloggers’ of ’em all.

    Remember at all times we are actually paying for these these jumped up creeps to talk down to us, smear our generally friendly grassroots campaign, and allowing them to practice rank hypocrisy upon not only the best political journalism (and I include many high readership online news and bloggers with excellent articles not only WoS) but upon innocent philanthropists like the Weirs, their only crime apparently is to be on the side the media and westminster politicians will smear until we show them by voting a big fat Yes.

    This is not grouse shooting season with a target on the much maligned Weirs. The weirs deserve the same respect that is demanded with such ignorant hypocrisy for the likes of jk Rowling and er, the Chinese Premier who I believe we monstered by believing him to be an undemocratic crawling wee shite!

    The side for no is to be treated with kid gloves while the side for Yes is allowed a free for all kick to the bass?

    I don’t think that is morally acceptable when the gloves are off and the groin guard has been removed.

  158. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    @ desimond

    No need to be Felipant.

    I’ll get my saco.

  159. Cath says:

    Cancelled my subscription. They asked for a reason why, so I said:

    “I subscribed because the Herald has been the best of an extremely bad bunch over referendum coverage but no longer wish to support it after today’s one-sided attack on Wings over Scotland, which implicitly condones abuse from the Tory MP. As someone who has actually written for Wings, my first piece being about shifting to yes from devo-max I regard your “die-hard nationalist” line as a smear on me personally as well.”

  160. Grouse Beater says:

    The Herald describes Wings, and therefore us, as:

    “A cult following among diehard nationalists.”

    That, folks, is a comment in a Scottish-based newspaper describing some of its readers. Nice.

  161. Nana Smith says:

    @Gary Coburn

    Ouch…..methinks this will have cost us quite a few undecideds

    Well not from where I’m sitting. My friend has just told me the faux outrage in todays papers has pushed her son in law from undecided to YES.
    He remembered the comments made in the daily mail regarding the Weirs and also George Galloways pigs reference.

  162. Angus says:

    Bass= Baws!

    I play the bass and guitar right enough so maybe the spell checker has a memory of all those who say I am rubbish on both!

  163. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    @ Grouse Beater

    I promised myself: “No more cult jokes”.

  164. desimond says:

    @Grouse Beater

    A previous English boss of mine said he didnt understand how the two Glasgwegians in his team seemed to spoke so aggresively to each other in conversation.

    We both laughed and dismissed his language fears. I told him “Rob, just remember, in Glasgow, the ultimate compliment is to be called a “A good cult” and the ultimate slagging is to be called a “A right cult”.

    Well, maybe no cult but you get my drift 🙂

  165. JLT says:


    I agree with you that Wings is a hard hitting site that gets the truth out there. It is why it is literally the rime Indy site.

    However, as I said a week ago after the press jumped on Stuart for the Clare Lally article, I had an uneasy feeling at the time that this was it; that the media had declared all out war on Wings.
    Right now, I would advise caution on how we are defining people. If we keep for hard hitting terms to describe people then that is just what the mainstream media want. They will demonise Wings and Stuart at every opportunity. The answer therefore is to denounce the person for not telling the truth, but I would leave the hard hitting terms out of it.

    Give them no ammunition.

  166. Cuilean says:

    The Scots’ Prayer

    Our Media which art in Fleet Street
    Hollow be thy names
    Thy spindom come
    Thy will be done on BBC as it is in No 10.
    Give Scots this day their daily dread
    And forgive us your threats
    As we forgive Eddie Izzard.
    And lead us into two nations
    But deliver us from Eton
    For ours is a kingdom
    To flower, without Tories
    Scotland Forever
    Ah ken.

  167. Grouse Beater says:

    Conan said: I promised myself: “No more cult jokes”.


    The Herald’s choice of words is pure Orwellian. God, those hacks must hate democracy at work.

  168. Tartan Tory says:

    @ Peter Macbeastie & Brotyboy

    Thank-you! 😉

  169. MajorBloodnok says:

    @Haggis Hunter

    I tell you that if you get out there, there is anything but voter apathy – from canvassing and from being on stalls there has clearly been a surge of interest amongst the public since the start of the official campaigns and as well as increasing numbers of genuine YES ‘foot soldiers’.

    But if the Unionists think that inducing apathy is a good tactic, it will only work against them because it is their own supporters that will believe this nonsense and will then decide not to engage and not to bother.

    To be honest, I think that most of this stuff just washes over people, but if we can draw attention to their hypocrisy and double standards then at least we have done something to counter the media bias.

    People only need to see that the media and the Unionists are lying to them once, and then the blind trust is gone and it’s game over for them. And it’s not like we’re short of irrefutable evidence of their lies and distortions to choose from.

  170. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    R whittington

    The weather in Chengdu is September is quite pleasant thank you.

    The cuisine, szechuan, it modestly hot too.

  171. faolie says:

    So, not only am I the “worst element of the cybernats” (The Scotsman), I’m a member of a sinister “cult.. full of diehard nationalists” (Herald, today).

    Well, at least they’re consistent in their smears. And these from respectable organisations, not ranting nutjob twitter trolls. Wow, we must really be getting to them.

    Excellent 🙂

  172. seanair says:

    I’m guessing that it was in big letters on the front page and that the “journalists” involved have been sacked!
    Seriously it is a sign of the trouble the Scotsman is in. Previously a sub-editor might have asked the author of the article if he was sure of his facts, not only in the interests of truth, but to avoid the paper in a court case. No sub-editors now (to save money), with disastrous results.
    Tick, tock.

  173. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Nana Smith

    The MSM is undermining any case it may believe it has by underestimating the sturdy nature of most folk. The most interesting reaction we got in our YES shop to the JKR “abuse” was some scornful women in dong the rubbing the eyes routine saying “boo hoo hoo,somebody’s called me bad names”

  174. desimond says:

    The Media attack on Wings\Rev is exactly the same as UKs desire to hold onto Scotland.

    No matter how much they try to pretend theyre acting in good faith, theyre only acting in total fear.

    In the words of Carlos Irwin Estévez …WINNING!

  175. Tartan Tory says:

    Cuilean says: The Scots’ Prayer


    I’d like to re-post this elsewhere, as it is a fabulous piece of work. However, I don’t want to engage in plagiarism so await your permission (or otherwise)! 😉

  176. Paul Isclosed says:

    Don’t you know that the only people who are allowed to be abusive are the printed press and the only people who are allowed to be abused are D-list celebrities.

    Heaven forbid if the proles are allowed to abuse people with actual power.

  177. john j says:

    When I read the original article I thought it was a bit of a hostage to fortune, on the other hand I would not want Wings to be meally-mouthed and overly sensitive to criticism.
    It’s a narrow line you’re walking Rev, but more power to your elbow. I am also a Herald subscriber but this is under review since I was described this morning as a die-hard nationalist as if this was something to be ashamed of. However the increase in attacks on cybernats and the concentration on women’s votes from the fear campaign makes me think that there’s something afoot that’s seriously worrying them.

  178. Derek M says:

    guys i think some of you do not quite understand ,while the rest of the yes campaign can get on with the excellent work they do ,wings has to play devils advocate if they wernt attacking us we would not be doing our part correctly ,this is no time for second guessing or self recriminations ,yes we will get our hands dirty and end up sometimes in the sty beside our opponents but somebody on the yes side must do this or all could be lost we only have one shot at this do not let them divide us.
    just my humble opinion.

  179. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Johnstone Press

    Share price now at 3.71 pence, down from c17 at the end of May.

    To borrow an old Dilbert joke line, if they keep on shedding staff, they will be able to produce the paper for free.

  180. kalmar says:

    It’s all good publicity.. Hardcore nos hate you anyway, but anyone going looking for the outrage will also discover this piece and perhaps open their minds a little.

  181. R whittington says:

    @Bugger (the Panda) Great!! Have a wonderful time.

  182. Helena Brown says:

    @Grouse Beater, The MSM have forgotten who they speak to and for. To talk about people as Mrs Thatcher did about the Unions as if they had come down from another planet did her no good and will in the end do them no good. Time will tell and in just over 90 days they may yet feel the retribution I hope they are ready for it.
    As for Stu’s insult, really, come on, the man is well beyond the pale and he WAS allowed to make his remarks without a word of criticism.

  183. Grouse Beater says:

    JLT said: They will demonise Wings and Stuart at every opportunity.

    They would have done it anyway. They always find a hook to hang their hat. The notion they would have pulled their punches if Wings had been docile is, quite frankly, naive.

    When you have the likes of journalists in UK nationals praising Wings it’s certain to set alight a rocket or two.

    The trick is to ensure the enemy is firing damp squibs.

    Wings has done that by getting a retraction and an apology out of the Scotsman – and soon, I trust, gizzillions!

  184. Cuilean says:

    Post it where you like.

  185. Grouse Beater says:

    WQhittington exuded: Great!! Have a wonderful time.

    If you are that lonely – get a life.

  186. John Russell says:

    I may be wrong but I don’t ever remember Alex Johnstone being elected to the Scottish Parliament. In other words he is one of the unelected bums on seats that make up the Tory group behind Ruth Davidson. What right has he to say what he has said about the Weirs but when your back is against the wall with the no vote losing the plot —- anything goes and the yes vote are supposed to accept it I think not

  187. JLT says:


    I wouldn’t say docile, mate. That implies that we are cowing to their domination. I just believe that we need to dance more lightly around them. There is no problem in Stuart hitting them hard with the facts, and making them look stupid at the denouncement of their own lies. Doing that still does the job.

    But this is what the BT mob want. They want mud slinging, and by doing it, we are giving them what they want. I think the media are trying to get a rise out of Stuart; by hopefully provoking him to a point, where he snaps instantly and replies in anger. That is what I truly fear for him. He’s a one man army taking on a helluva f****** lot. I don’t envy him one bit, but I sure as hell admire him for having the massive cojones to do it!

    For me, I would rather we keep the serious name calling out of it. Give the other side nothing.

  188. R whittington says:

    @Grouse Beater I’m not sure what your problem with me is but can you stop with the insulting and personal comments. It does neither of us any favours.

  189. Stu I hope you will forgive me for being a bit robust on this one.

    Martin and some others are right. No-one has done more than you to provide an evidence-based case for the union and point out that the counter offer is less than the status quo. The more people learn about those arguments, the more likely they are to vote YES. You certainly convinced me. Because of that Better Together are desperately trying to make argument and hostility the story, rather than the substantive issues of the debate.

    You may be quite justified to call this guy scum, but the general public are never going to learn about that fact through the filter of the MSM. Far better for you to refocus on the brilliant job you have been doing of getting the facts to the public. Don’t get sucked into their PR storm of negativity, that is THEIR tactic, and by responding to it, you are making a success of their strategy.

    You cannot win that argument with them, because you cannot win an argument with a troll, only realise that they are not worth responding to. But you CAN continue to point out their lies, hypocrisy and scaremongering, backed up with dispassionate evidence.

    Some have criticised Jim Sillars for giving credence to cybernat stories by making a call-to-arms in the form of a plea for discipline. But Mr Sillars is an old war horse and has a good point. Now is the time for extreme discipline, and polite, reasoned argument. If it wasn’t, Better Together wouldn’t be trying to create drama and suck us down into the gutter with them.

    Please, rise above this. The movement needs you to be listened to, and to be sticking to the real arguments.

  190. Grouse Beater says:

    Helena pointed out the folly: he WAS allowed to make his remarks without a word of criticism.

    It’s the hypocrisy and self-delusion that rankles.

    Some years back the local Wee Free minister approached me as I was bashing in the umpteenth fence post for a kid’s play area in Plockton, lathered in sweat, stripped to the waist, hands covered in blisters.

    “Working on the Sabbath, sir?”
    I was in no mood for inane small talk.
    “Where’s your wife, minister?” I asked.
    “Where she always is, cooking the dinner.”
    “Aye? Is that so? Well you can fuck off!”

    And I resumed my work without looking up at him.

  191. Red Squirrel says:

    It’s a shame that the Rev has to put up with this biased rubbish – I guess we’re at the stage where they’ve come to fight? Never realised I was a diehard nationalist before the Herald helpfully enlightened me.

    Welcome to all the new readers – here is a place of sanity in contrast to the lies, smears and self-serving spin of the anti-self-determination bunch.

  192. I have little patience for some commenteers here indulging in the deeply distasteful pastime of ‘blame the victim’ almost with a sense of schadenfreud.

      When I consider the many tens of thousands of hours that Stuart has conscientiously devoted to building up our cause through painstaking research and evidence-based reporting – only to be slapped down like that by so-called supporters I just lose it!

    Get off your know-it-all told-you-so pedestals and show some bloody solidarity, appreciation and loyality to a fellow comrade!

    So Stuart was rude about a Tory!

    On the evening of the foundation of the NHS in 1948 Nye Bevan it’s founder said:

    That is why no amount of cajolery, and no attempts at ethical or social seduction, can eradicate from my heart a deep burning hatred for the Tory Party that inflicted those bitter experiences on me. So far as I am concerned they are lower than vermin. They condemned millions of first-class people to semi-starvation. Now the Tories are pouring out money in propaganda of all sorts and are hoping by this organised sustained mass suggestion to eradicate from our minds all memory of what we went through. But, I warn you young men and women, do not listen to what they are saying now. Do not listen to the seductions of Lord Woolton. He is a very good salesman. If you are selling shoddy stuff you have to be a good salesman. But I warn you they have not changed, or if they have they are slightly worse than they were.


    That’s exactly what Johnstone is.

    And so are all his allies, defenders and fellow travellers.

    Never forget it.

    Solidarity, Stuart!


    You’re devastatingly effective at hitting the bastards where it HURTS! 

    Onwards! Soar Alba!

  193. Neil Craig says:

    Stuart this from the Press Council Code may be apposite:

    2 Opportunity to reply

    A fair opportunity for reply to inaccuracies must be given when reasonably called for.

    The refusal of anybody but the P&J (who then spiked the story) to even ask for your comment is clearly in breach of that basic rule.

    Granted the PC will go to almost any length to find for their paymasters, unless you are close to the Queen, but it might be a useful shot over their bows.

    (I once put in a complaint about the Herald publicly asking me for a reply to a letter and then refusing to publish it (something the PC had previously ruled improper. The editor deliberately lied in his testimony – claiming to have already published 23 letters from me when the truth was 3. The PC not only broke their code to support him but didn’t make any objection to being lied to. While accepting this as the standard of honesty the British press aspire I acknowledger there is the possibility that there is some journalist somewhere who is not a wholly corrupt lying Fascist whore (not on the Herald obviously).

  194. Grouse Beater says:

    JLT said: I just believe that we need to dance more lightly around them.

    What else can we do?

    They own the tanks. Let’s swipe one with our supemarket bag. bad, bad, tank. (That guy has never been seen or heard of since.)

    Enough of the, are we righteous enough or are we doing enough hand wringing?

    Get back to the attack.

  195. seanair says:

    Nana Smith
    Surely Mcquarrie has to go. Caught breaking the rules, even when there is a precedent regarding these rules in London.
    Can’t believe he wasn’t aware of the precedent, but he goes ahead anyway to feed some of our licence fee money to a Labour MSP. You couldn’t make it up!

  196. Vambomarbeleye says:

    DM article yesterday john major spouting keech about the ref. comments are for a change generally pro Scottish. Strange

  197. JLT says:

    Major Bloodnok

    To be honest, I think that most of this stuff just washes over people

    That I agree with. Was out last night with a couple of other guys canvassing. In the Knightsridge area of Livingston, we got a mixed bag but I would still say that we got around 50% ‘Yes’ / Undecided for what is considered a Labour area.

    Funniest answer was some wifey who said ‘Naw. Just naw!’ and then seconds later asked, ‘But what happens if I don’t vote all all? Would it be added to the ‘Yes’ vote?’

    My reply was, ‘No, it would just be discounted. It wouldn’t go to either side’ to which, she just nodded. Privately, I was actually delighted that she had gone from a straight ‘No’ to ‘Can’t be bothered’. One less vote for ‘No’ and almost feels like a ‘Yes’ vote for us!

  198. Grouse Beater says:

    Neil Craig pointed out press rules: fair opportunity for reply to inaccuracies must be given when reasonably called for.

    The refusal of anybody but the P&J (who then spiked the story) to even ask for your comment is clearly in breach of that basic rule.

  199. Nana Smith says:


    Sadly that is what they do…make it up!

  200. Molly says:

    I listened to Pat Kane being interviewed on Derek Batemans podcast . In it Pat spoke about , how in times of great change , the bourgeoisie normally take advantage or see an opportunity where change is beneficial.Pat then went onto make the point , how the same bourgeoisie have ‘never stepped up’ , they’ve been posted missing in Scotland and when you think about he’s right.

    Throughout our history, the cosy establishment figures have stood on the sidelines( you could say protected their own self interests), while it was the ‘ ordinary workers’ who took the brunt while trying to change, improve conditions.

    Picture in your head, the old pictures of the shipyards, it’s not Mr Management who you see, it’s Jimmy Reid talking to the workers. The impact of Mrs Ts policies on the NHS, it was the nurses, the Drs and the miners marching through Edinburgh to try and protect it, the destruction of Ravenscraig, the image of the building being razed to the ground.

    Through it all, there has been one consistent thing- a cowed, compliant and in some cases complicit media.The Scottish media has stood back, the silent observer without ever using the power/ voice it has to bring about change.

    The one or two campaigns a newspaper like The Daily a Record has initiated , have all had strings attached due to their blind support of the Labour Party so why should we be surprised that the same silent observers, are now all in cahoots to keep things the same .

    The SH may support Independence but apart from that declaration, it does something more important than that, it allows their Columnists to debate the issues, something the Alan Cochranes, Marcus Gardhams and Severin Carroll’s don’t because they are too steeped in their Morningside culture, too protected by their respectability and too unused to responsibility.

    How can the likes of Cochrane, understand how it feels to decide whether you spend your last tenner on the bus to get to the shops or you walk the miles so you can buy an extra school shirt for the new term?

    I don’t know if Mr Cochrane and his fellow journalists consider themselves part of the bourgeoisie , personally I would say charlatans more like but instead of this he said, she said stuff, how about our media actually ask ( as explained by Lord Forsyth) how the unionist parties are going to get these new shiny powers passed by Westminster or is this he said , she said just lining it up again for Johan Lamont at FMQs?

  201. Aw. You beat me to it Nana. I was gonna post that link.

    They say they’re replacing her with a journalist. Ooh. I can think of a journalist who could do that!

    Why don’t you apply, Rev?

  202. joe kane says:

    I just get the impression that WOS, and its followers and supporters, are driving the pro-Unionist establishment crazy. They don’t know how to handle such a genuinely popular internet-based grassroots phenomena. If they attack it in the foreign-owned and controlled Scottish news media, they’re just giving it more exposure and more publicity. On the other hand, it’s far too big and has too great a reach to ignore.

    Yesterday’s WOS article Lies and replies was a master-class in debunking propaganda. Easily readable and understandable which cut across party and class politics in its neutrality. It addressed the facts of the case, nothing more. Which is exactly what a grassroots campaign is all about. Convincing neutrals regardless of their backgrounds and affiliations.

    Trust in professional politicians is at all time lows, fuelled by the mainstream news media themselves in their support for UKIP, an alleged alternative (don’t laugh) to the corrupt and unaccountable Westminster political establishment. But then again, mainstream journalism isn’t too highly rated either hence the popularity of internet blogging journalists such as Rev. Stuart Campbell.

    What people think of the likes of Johnstone and the Herald compared to their trust in other professionals. Trust in mainstream journalists and politicians struggle to get into double figures some years. Obviously all the work of that ‘orrible bloke at WOS –
    Trust in Professions
    Ipsos MORI
    03 Dec 2013

  203. Nana Smith says:

    @Grouse Beater

    Working on the Sabbath, sir?”
    I was in no mood for inane small talk.
    “Where’s your wife, minister?” I asked.
    “Where she always is, cooking the dinner.”
    “Aye? Is that so? Well you can fuck off!”

    Ah the good old free church minister. I was brought up on the Isle of Lewis where holding back the populace was a free church sport. Still is in some areas.

    Has a lot to do with my having no religious belief.

  204. DocFin says:

    @IanMacdonald. I agree with your well worded comment. Yesterday’s destruction of the booklet to be delivered is exactly what many turn to this site for – incisive, investigative journalism at its best. The campaign of the MSM which kicked off last week was only ever going to continue. They are running scared and this is the way it will be for the coming weeks.
    Someone asked yesterday if they were becoming paranoid after seeing the red, white and blue colours in the glossy advert/front page of the booklet. No, not paranoid, just realising the way a carefully constructed advert can ‘suggest’ something bigger than the parts. The No campaign is clearly drawing on advertising ploys of semiotics and being driven by a host of PR professionals. Therefore, the way words are used on Wings pieces has to be carefully considered. It is, as I said at the start, clear, incisive debunking of the blatant distortions being presented by the MSM that will carry the day as more and more people turn to sites like this. When shown clear and unambiguous reporting which tears MSM stories apart many I have spoken to are made to challenge previously held views.
    Don’t stop the investigative side but do stop the smears.

  205. G H Graham says:

    Every time anyone clicks on The Herald’s website or buys a print copy of their daily propaganda sheets, they are enabling that singularly disagreeable Gardham & his sub editors, to carry on as normal; publishing lies, smears & one sided jingoistic invective.

    I have no sympathy then for anyone sufficiently offended to then visit this site & complain. The Herald & The Scotsman only exist because people just like you and me keep funding them through clicking & purchasing hard copies.

    The remedy is easy though; stop reading their propaganda & sooner rather than later, these titles will cease to exist.

  206. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I earlier asked for a link to the Scotsman’s retraction, and can understand why nobody took me up on it – I can’t even find a mention of Campbell Gunn this year!”

    It’s linked at the start of the piece now.

  207. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “A fair opportunity for reply to inaccuracies must be given when reasonably called for.”

    There’s nothing inaccurate (I think) in any of the stories, though. I did call him that.

  208. Marcia says:

    Joe Kane is correct. The MSM are fuelling the rise of the readership for this site and they know it. On such a tiny advertising budget of £0.

    Although I will handbag the Rev if he gives the MSM any unnecessary ammunition in the future.

  209. heedtracker says:

    What did the Press and Journal ask I wonder. The P&J is ferocious right wing if localised vote no ranter but grotesque hypocrites to boot. Avoid it like the plague but every time a Press and Journal bettertogether blast pops up here in Aberdeen its like a fart in a space suit.

  210. @DocFin

    Yes, very well put. The analysis of the government booklet by Stu yesterday was fantastic, incisive investigative journalism. The BT PR smear campaign with its host of John McTernan types wants Stu to spend less time on exposing their lies like that, and more time responding to manufactured drama stories, like the one they whipped up around the “fat scum” comment.

  211. Vambomarbeleye says:

    I’m trying to encourage no voters that the middle of September would be a very good time for a holiday. All ready got one v

  212. MajorBloodnok says:


    Wait, I’ll get popcorn.

  213. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Please, rise above this. The movement needs you to be listened to, and to be sticking to the real arguments.”

    The fallacy that our opponents can be reasoned with is one of the most dangerous in politics.

    When we were monstered by the Mail, readership spiked massively, adding over 100,000 new readers. But that’s not the important thing. The key is that those figures haven’t fallen back.

    When you get this sort of thing in the media, people come to the site to see what this evil beast is like. And then what they actually see are reasoned, sourced, rational arguments. That has two effects:

    One, they trust the mainstream media a little less, and two, they tend to be a little bit more prepared to listen to the alternative voice, when perhaps they might not have been before. You won’t convert them all, but every pair of eyes you open even a little bit, every seed of doubt you sow in people’s minds about the lies they’re being told by No and the media, is vital.

    I didn’t call Johnstone “scum” again by accident. We just got a heap of free advertising, and everyone who came to the site as a result gets to (a) read the truth behind the Johnstone story, and (b) have the chance to click the “this is what we do” link at the top of the page.

    That’s the info we need to get in front of people, and most of all we need to get it in front of people WHO WEREN’T ALREADY ON OUR SIDE. How do you do that? You get the enemy to deliver your leaflets to its own people, by any means necessary.

    Jeesh, do I really need to spell this stuff out? Sharpen up, folks.

  214. G H Graham says:

    I should have added that the code of conduct, rules & regulations that these titles operate within is only designed to give the appearance of propriety.

    In reality, these papers can do almost what they want because almost all of them are owned and controlled outside of Scotland. So there is no desire to ensure fairness or balance either among their owners & backers or in London.

    The British don’t want Scotland to achieve independence so they just turn a blind eye when a print title chooses to ignore their own professional guidelines.

    Don’t waste your energy complaining then. The biggest impact you can have is to stop reading these titles & then lobby an independent Scottish government to establish a new media framework that guarantees fairness & balance while eliminating once and for all, the lurid, salacious images that thousands of Scots still think appropriate content for their newspapers & magazines.

  215. Grouse Beater says:

    Stuart said: The fallacy that our opponents can be reasoned with is one of the most dangerous in politics.

    That epigram should be on sale, framed, from Wings.

  216. Leo Foyle says:

    @ Nana SMith, 11:02.

    Reading that “Scotsman” article about Crossfire and Dugdale, I rather got the impression that the deal fell through because Kezia didn’t want to work for free.

  217. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    Hah. “Former journalist” indeed…

  218. Papadox says:

    @Grouse Beater 11:14 AM

    Well said grouse beater couldn’t agree more, attack till they are silenced and raise the white flag.

    Good article on this very subject on newsnet by GA Ponsonby.

    They have lost the argument and now they wish to silence the truth. They are in total disarray and panic mode. ATTACK!

  219. Marcia says:

    O/T New website for listing all the Yes public meetings etc. Send the link around.

  220. desimond says:

    Cybernat exploits Tory MP!

    “WHo is the real scum” asks Scottish Media


  221. punklin says:

    I think it is a mistake to use the terms you used about Alex Johnstone.

    Doesn’t help.

  222. MajorBloodnok says:


    Wait, I’ll get more popcorn,

  223. Robert Peffers says:

    A skim through the very long list of OTT insults thrown about by hecht heid ains of the Unionist persuasion makes it clear exactly where the real rich seam of gratuitous, intemperate and insulting attacks upon the Independence movement stems from.

    Let’s face it, if a grateful Union rewards its servants with a seat in the House of Lords or an appointment to the head of a ministry, or a shadow ministry, then the Unionist movement are openly promoting such attacks.

    Did we really expect anything else?

  224. Grouse Beater says:

    Conan_the_Librarian says: Hah. “Former journalist” indeed…

    Satire I like, especially when it has razor’s edge.

  225. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    @ MajorBloodnok

    You must eat like an Alex Johntone.

  226. Nana Smith says:

    @Leo Foyle says

    Reading that “Scotsman” article about Crossfire and Dugdale, I rather got the impression that the deal fell through because Kezia didn’t want to work for free.

    What’s new politicians and greed!

  227. Robert Louis says:

    Ian MacDonald, at 1109 am,

    I could not agree more. Much of this serves as a distraction.

  228. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    Apologies to all Alex Johntones everywhere…

  229. Edulis says:

    I think it would be worthwhile to do some digging on the life and career of Alex Johnstone MSP. For a start he farmed on his own account before getting onto the list system of MSP election. What arrangements did he make as a proud Tory to max out at the farm subsidy trough?

    Can any locals give us the low-down on any little inconsistencies he might have between his public image and his proud Scot/Tory personna?

    He doesn’t seem the brightest button. How come he rose without trace?

  230. cynicalHighlander says:

    Definition of ‘scum’.

    such as a person or an element of society, that is regarded as despicable or worthless.

    I think there are far more denigrating words to that worthless man.

  231. Nana Smith says:

    My grannie used to say “scum rises to the top”

  232. Josef O Luain says:

    I am not personally given to the use of adjectives such as “scum” “Quisling” and so forth, but that doesn’t make me blind as to why people feel the need to use such language.

    In my own state of frustration I am happy enough to refer to the enemies of a democratic Scotland as simply, “enemies”. And that is exactly what most paid-commentators, paid cheer-leaders and politicians have made of themselves in this debate.

    (ENEMY:.noun (pl. enemies)a person who is actively opposed to someone or something. O.E.D.)

  233. desimond says:

    General questions this week are on topics including the recruitment of rural GPs, the condition of school buildings and how the Scottish government’s proposed single intelligence agency in an independent Scotland “would protect citizens from unjustified surveillance”.

    unjustified surveillance, what about unjustified journalism?

  234. Nana Smith says:

    Posting this link again for those who may have missed it.

  235. G H Graham says:

    Thin skinned people, listen up.

    Alex Johnstone deliberately & carefully attempted to prove that the Weirs are a poorly educated couple; stupid, naive, unsophisticated, nationalist fanatics who bizarrely, according to his logic, were simultaneously duped out of their money by a sleazy, scheming Alex Salmond.

    His facts are not facts. And his allegations are puerile. He attempted to assassinate the good character or two ordinary, decent people who have used their luck to fund a cause they have believed in for many years as well as support local community projects.

    There really is no need to defend the Weirs because they have done nothing wrong; only good from all account. But we should hammer Johnstone for his narrative that was gleefully published by a major print title whose name I will not mention to limit publicity.

    The humanity in me suggests I should feel pity for the likes of Johnstone, a man who, despite all the facts, cannot muster a moment of empathy, admiration or gratitude for a couple who have helped their local community.

    When someone is so nasty towards others, it often suggests that it is they themselves with whom they are most disenfranchised. A bit of digging might reveal Johnstone to be quite the victim of who knows what in his personal life. But then again, this morning, I couldn’t give a shit.

    He’s still scum.

  236. Bugger (the Panda) says:


  237. Grouse Beater says:

    Baroness Trumpington: “That Salmond is a complete madman. (As opposed to a half-wit? GB) I hope he goes down, down, down.”

    A woman of few words, and every one offensive.

  238. MajorBloodnok says:


    Actually I’m a Johnston on my mother’s side, which explains it. Though clearly not Tory enough to afford the affectation of a terminal ‘e’. Those extra vowels don’t come cheap.

  239. Clydebuilt says:

    I hand out the Aye Right leaflet, which lists 14 Pro Indy Websites and blogs. WoS is top of the list. are YES now saying we are not to hand out this excellent flyer. I find that it’s welcomed by undecided’s and weak NO’s alike. They all say they are looking for info, these flyers open up the world of The Indy offering on the web. Often found that people who are not prepared to discuss their views are prepared to take this flyer.

  240. Lee Rogers says:

    @ Rev Stu

    Y’re doing a great job Stu, no question, for which many thanx. Don’t let the doubters grind you down, just do what you do best. 🙂

  241. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    perfidious fools.

  242. desimond says:

    FMQs – The Labour leader says parents, pupils and teachers “deserve better from this government”

    Thats Johann Lamont who according to a friend of a friend told a full class “You lot? You lot will never amount to anything” when their teacher and asked about aspiration.

  243. MajorBloodnok says:

    @GH Graham

    And of course the immediate upshot of Johnstone’s smears was for the Weirs to deliberately donate another £1,000,000. Talk about a massive OG.

  244. David says:

    Out of interest did anyone from Yes or SNP challenge the comments made about the Weirs?

  245. desimond says:

    FMQ – This is getting beyond comedy now, Johann Lamont is Ron Burgundy. She’ll read out anything she is told without one micro-second of comprehension of its actual meaning.

  246. Fiona says:

    It is a shame that the “apology” allows them to repeat the allegations at full length: they take up more of the space than the retraction does. Also they say “has informed us” rather than something stronger like “we were wrong” It leaves it open for people to think that this is a case where it is still possible to take the view that it is one person’s word against another’s: rather than the utterly false claims they actually are.

    Or am I being overly sensitive? Perhaps so.

  247. Bugger (the Panda) says:


    As Johnstone Press?

  248. DAVID MOORE says:

    Love “Wings” Rev. But I think you overstepped the mark this time. Perhaps a toned down comment would have done, but a bit of controversy brings the site to the fore. If he does apologise to the Weirs, then I look forward to your apology on “Wings”.

  249. scottish_skier says:

    Jeesh, do I really need to spell this stuff out? Sharpen up, folks.

    All perfectly logical. Hence my earlier comment along the ‘What on earth are pro-union folks doing advertising Wings?’ line.

    “Any publicity is good publicity”.

    We’ve just watched UKIP rise to dizzing new heights south of the border based on a wall to wall ‘smear’ campaign, and in this case the smears were actually true rather than just made up.

    Would have been simpler for the Herald et al. if they’d just put a redirect straight to Wings for anyone clicking on the article.

  250. scottish_skier says:

    ‘Controversial Website’ that annoys Tories.

    Must go and see what that’s all about – sounds fascinating.

  251. heedtracker says:

    The really ace thing about vote no or else Press and Journal is the way they stand outside Aberdeen Sheriff courts chasing after/photographing newly convicted benefit fraudsters. You know the types, exhausted, ashamed, defeated Aberdonians, bums one and all stealing our hard earned taxes. You get after them P&J.

    Turn page and huge double sided grovelfest prostrating to the ever expanding royals and their £100+million police protection slackers.

  252. Grouse Beater says:

    England is in love with two things: it’s own superiority and the impossibility of ever losing Scotland.

  253. R whittington says:

    To clarify: I’m a little worried that posts/blogs/tweets that are made whilst (for whatever reason) the red mist is still apparent do the yes campaign no favours. That’s why I think it would be a good idea for both sides to back of al little and have a days break.

  254. G H Graham says:

    FFS people, First Minister Questions is posted on the Scottish Government’s own website-

    or on YouTube

    The BBC is the propaganda channel of the British Government.

  255. Grouse Beater says:

    Dick Whittington said yet again fort the umpteenth time: That’s why I think it would be a good idea for both sides to back of a little and have a days break.

    Snoresville Central!

  256. @Rev. Stuart Campbell

    I understand what you’re saying and that all sounds tactically astute. I am quite clear that committed NO voters and the MSM aren’t to be reasoned with. I made that point in my post. You’re also right of course that monstering by the MSM creates new readers – as long as it really is unjustified.

    But I wasn’t talking about reasoning with our opponents. I was talking about convincing undecided voters. Some of those will be reading stories about evil cybernats, and just be turned off by the impression created by the MSM. If you really do indulge in calling people names, rather than just pointing out their lies and hypocrisy, some voters will start to believe the co-ordinated spin by BT that the whole Independence movement is hate-filled and divisive. I’m just suggesting not giving them ammunition in that one specfic manner – because this is the only campaign tactic they have left. If we don’t feed it, they are BEATEN.

    I note that in the guidance for comments section on this website you yourself state: “2. Play the ball, not the man (or woman). And by all means disagree, by all means disagree forcefully – but argue with people’s views, don’t insult them personally.” All I am suggesting is that you follow your own sound advice.

    I assume you advised addressing people’s views because you understand there are some voters who will just be turned off by name-calling full stop and won’t listen to sources that engage in it. I honestly don’t think it will be a good tactic in the long run.

    Everything else you said I entirely agree with. Apart from the sharpen up comment. Believe it or not I was just trying to be helpful, and I’m sharp as a tack, thank you. But you kind of made my point for me. The angrier you seem, the less likely people are to listen to you, and the more the MSM are going to attack you in the hope that you crack up under the pressure and say something really unfortunate. That is why I am making the point that your excellent, dispassionate journalism already gets all the attention it needs from the MSM without resorting to name calling, or accusing your own supporters of being stupid when they disagree with you out of the best of intentions.

  257. Angus says:

    “But Mr Sillars is an old war horse and has a good point. Now is the time for extreme discipline, and polite, reasoned argument.”


    Jim Sillars also helped out better together and the no campaign with ‘pretty shite’ articles that said more of his being pissed off at Alex salmond and the SNP than promoting Independence when it suited him.

    His arsey playing about with the media still manages to bit us (but mainly him) on the bum…….reasoned argument my buttocks when it suits Jim it is fine but if he has an axe to grind the Scotsman gets the article they want!

  258. Conan_the_Librarian says:

    @ MajorBloodnok

    ‘e’s are something I’ve never bought.

    Though I’m pretty sure my sons have…

  259. bunter says:


    CH4 has downloaded a story on my timeline regards ”Britain First”. The picture is quite alarming, all paramilitary garb and the union jack everywhere. Apparently they are targeting and intimidating folks at their mosques and as CH4 say, they have a huge social media presence.

    I would wager that the stuff they post will put the word ”scum” well into perspective.

    Am I right in saying that this lot are permitted participants in oor indyref?

  260. a supporter says:

    Keep up the good work Stu.

    What annoys me most of all is the number of WetNats willing to take the side of the opposition in this whole debate. Hand wringers who think if we say boo! to the NO numpties the Indy Ref will fall about our ears. They can’t see that the object of all this MSM/BT nonsense is to close down the debate coming from the YES side or to make it so innocuous that it doesn’t matter.

    And unfortunately some of the leading lights in the campaign are infected with this stupidity and are willing to cause disruption among our ranks by criticising Wings and others who don’t conform to how they think the YES campaign should be conducted.

  261. R whittington says:

    @Bunter Britain first are a nasty bunch. I believe they have links to the BNP.

  262. Grouse Beater says:

    Two examples of how the powerful deal with enemies.

    Betrand Russell on meeting Lenin, (no, not John):

    Russell: Once you round up all the aristocracy, what then?
    Lenin: What then? Then we hang them all from the nearest lampost!

    King George V on the collapse of the 1926 General Strike:

    King: Oh, what a stupid revolution. Everyone knows you shoot the bobbies first!

  263. Morag says:

    The “apology” [repeated] the allegations at full length: they take up more of the space than the retraction does. Also they say “has informed us” rather than something stronger like “we were wrong” It leaves it open for people to think that this is a case where it is still possible to take the view that it is one person’s word against another’s: rather than the utterly false claims they actually are.

    I agree with Fiona (for once!)

    That “apology” is shocking. It’s no more than an opportunity to repeat the smears, with the addition of “he denies it” (of course).

    The usual form for that srot of thing is, at the very least, “We are happy to acknowledge…” and then, you know, actually acknowledge that the report was wrong. Simply repeating the whole lot again just with the addition of “Mr Campbell informs us this is not the case” is way not good enough.

    Stu said the originally-proposed wording was closer to the “we are happy to acknowledge” form. He didn’t say why they changed it, or whether he knew they were changing it.

    He also said he was very far from finished with the Scotsman. Pass that popcorn.

  264. pa_broon74 says:

    The Yes campaign online is a bit like the newspapers should be, with ‘Wings’ you get some invective, edgy commentary and a good bit of wit. Where-as NNS (for example) traveled in a different direction and went more mainstream & safe.

    I think the point is, you read the content that suits your nature. I quite like an incisive no-nonsense rant so ‘Wings’ suits me. NNS on the other hand are a lot ‘safer’ and less in your face or controversial. I’ll always still read NNS because their articles are good, plus they opened my eyes in the first instance to what was really going on.

    Wingsoverscotland is actually really unique in terms of personal blogs (which is what it started out as.) Now, since we’ve all pitched in (via crowd-funding) its even more unique (a fact still not picked up by any of the press contingent) – but it doesn’t mean it belongs to us or that Stuart has to kowtow to his new bank rollers.

    Far from it, I want to be challenged and there will be don’t-know’s in the same boat who’ll respond positively to the style of writing and content here.

    For others, there is NNS and Bella etc.

    We really cannot flinch in this debate, it would be more damaging than any challenging word or sentiment in terms of moving more people to a Yes vote.

    In terms of Alex Johnstone, scum isn’t a word I’d have used, I would have deployed something a bit stronger, not just for what he said about the Weirs, but for his politics in general.

  265. Peter Macbeastie says:

    @ Brotyboy; no problem; I should perhaps have said where I was aiming. It was at the same place you were addressing your comment to.

    @ Tartan Tory; no problem there either. I will label people trolls when I believe them to be trolling; defending those who I believe are being unjustly accused is a new thing for me.

    The original article is just another indication of the duplicitous nature of the ‘Scottish’ press. They go to town on any unionist accusations of Yes supporters attacking unionist individuals, whether there is evidence to support their assertions or, more often, not. Truth does not apply to the MSM. They make their own.

    This website is my oft quoted source for brilliant debunking information. I have lost count of the number of times I’ve broken out Doug Daniel’s excellent article on the Euro. I know a few people who are dramatically more media savvy than they formerly were because they have read Stu’s deconstructions of what papers really want you to think when they use certain phrases. People are genuinely horrified that they didn’t notice previously just how much the media leads their opinions around by the nose or even spoon feeds their opinions to them.

  266. Richy Duncan says:

    Stuart Campbell

    I write this to express my thanks for the incredible work you do on behalf of us YES voters. You find the truth and de-bunk the lies. I can not tell how many people have changed their views since coming on the site but I am one.

    You have been noticed by the MSM and are therefore there to be shot down. This has happened to most yes celebrities and the hypocrisy over the Lallygate farce whilst ignoring the vile abuse of the Weirs , shows us all the direction the MSM are taking.

    The strategy of deflection is a clever tactic and never seems to fail , the number of comments here prove that.

    Your a big lad Stuart and i have no doubt you can handle anything the media throw at you , but i do worry that you will be dragged into arguments regarding conduct thus again deflecting issues that matter.

    Take care what you say on twitter. We all know how bad it can get and your anger and frustration mirrors what most of us feel.

    keep to the issues and ignore the drivel cast by the MSM. Most folk are fed up with it and their negativity is helping our cause. W.O.S. will no doubt gain from exposure on the MSM and those that come here can find out for themselves just by reading a few of your blogs.

    You are a target. A “big” name in the independence circle.

    Your quoted on almost every other site as the place to find out the truth. Your blog encourages us and your supporters are a loyal bunch. You are not alone.

    Just watch your back Stu. You have all our support. We will not stand by and allow you to be attacked . Check the comments on the rags where your vilified and you will see we all back you to the hilt.

    We are winning.

    lets all remember that .

  267. Grouse Beater says:

    Ian MacDonald: I was talking about convincing undecided voters.

    Let them speak for themselves!

    Isn’t that what we are aiming to do, to give everybody a voice, to empower everyone? They don’t need to be taught political sparring by numbers. Who sis telling thyem to speak out within narrow preordained guidlines?

    And while some do it the enemies of Scotland’s future exploit the lull to regroup troops.

    You presume too much, a sea of shocked innocents aghast at the word ‘scum.’ All very middle-class and buttoned-up. You are a victim of your own self-imposed anxieties.

  268. @Angus

    I agree with you that Jim Sillars has been a loose cannon. But then, I didn’t say I agreed with everything he says. I just said he was an experienced campaigner and had a good point that name-calling only hands ammunition to the BT smear campaign that seeks to portray us all as slavering and divisive.

    He is right about THAT.

  269. David McCann says:

    I have just read on Bella that the Yes campaign have officially distanced themselves from Wings.

    Please find below my email to the Yes campaign in response.

    “I have just seen on Bella that the Yes campaign have issued an instruction to Yes campaigners like me to disassociate ourselves from the Wings website.
    As someone who has followed Wings since its inception, and helped to fund it, I strongly resent and am appalled at this decision.
    Had I known this the other day, when making my donation to the Yes campaign, I would have had to re-consider, in light of this completely ridiculous decision.
    I am absolutely committed to the Yes campaign, but this decision is wrong on every count, and MUST be rescinded.”

  270. Tartan Tory says:

    @Ian MacDonald 12:26 pm

    Spot-on sir! No point in me repeating the same thing in a different way. 😉

  271. Andy-B says:

    Well done Rev, by playing P&G at their own game you,ve shown them for what they, and the other newspapers are, one sided unionist mouthpieces. As for Mr Johnstone until he apologisest to the Weir’s for his shocking abuse of them, the word Scum, just about sums him up.

  272. heedtracker says:

    The real worry is not that the richer the teamGB super rich get, the harder their media fight to protect them. It’s what’s really going on in England’s cities. Talk to cops across England and they are really really worried about social unrest. The all new Milliband/Balls no benefits for young people nightmare is only adding fuel to the fire.

  273. R whittington says:

    @Richy Duncal well said. Totally agree

  274. geo says:

    @ R whittington

    Stuart’s comment was not said in a red mist… it was calculated.

  275. Brian Ritchie says:

    O/T Well the much awaited joint statement has been made – seems like a damp squib to me.

  276. Proud Cybernat says:

    Herald editing and pulling BTL posts left, right and centre on this story.

    Fuel to the WoS fire.

  277. heedtracker says:

    It’s is a dud squid more like. Even the BBC ligger is forced to report-

    “It also makes no mention of the offer of more powers from the three main pro-Union parties.”

  278. Footsoldier says:

    Sorry to say using words like fat troughing scum has absolutely no place in this debate, whether deserved or not.

    It demeans the Yes case and simnply makes life more difficult for the Yes side.

  279. @Grouse Beater

    Actually I grew up in Grangemouth and my Dad worked in the chemical plant at the ICI. I spent a spell at the BP as a labourer myself. I would be described as middle class now because of my education, but can still “F” and “C” with the best of them. I can assure you that among my friends I am known for my bad language. When I am talking about independence in the pub I swear my head off.

    You say I presume too much, yet you presumed a great deal about me on the basis of almost no evidence. I am not in the slightest offended by Stu’s language. I agree with him.

    But like @Richy Duncan above, I believe that BT want nothing more than for big hitters on the YES side to resort to name calling, because they will use it to spin the independence movement as fascists all the way from here to 18th September.

    You say I am middle-class and buttoned up, and a victim of my own self-imposed anxieties. I wonder if you have any evidence for those patronising comments? Care to engage me in an evidence-based debate about how the independence movement is going to counter BT’s last-gasp demonisation PR campaign? Got any better ideas than not engaging in a slagging match? Somehow the tone of your comments makes me doubt that.

  280. Fiona says:

    @ a supporter

    I think there is room for all shades of opinion about how this campaign should be run. It seems to me that everyone is keen to make the best case for independence. Everyone also has to face the problem of a biased media, and the difficulty of securing a platform that entails. We will have different views on how best to do that

    As I see it, Mr Campbell is pragmatic, and according to his post above he believes that the occasional straightforward insult, where justified, has the effect of attracting some undecided people to this site. In this he appears to be correct. So the question then is, what effect does it have on those who come to see what the fuss is about?

    I have confidence in the content of the articles here. They are full of well sourced information, and anyone who takes the time to read some of them will learn things they did not know from reading the MSM. But you have to get them here, and I think we have to acknowledge that Mr Campbell has a very good grasp on how to do that: I do not. It is therefore not for me to judge the tactics, even though I normally prefer facts and issues over personality. At bottom I believe the focus on individuals is a source of power for MSM and it comes at the expense of an informed electorate. So I think it is dangerous. But I cannot deny it is often effective, and we are where we are.

    I am not persuaded that “politeness” is enough by itself. I have tried to debate with unionists in the way that suits me best, and I do not find that it works. Those who are strongly committed are not interested in facts and no matter how often their positions are challenged it turns into groundhog day: they come back with the same arguments week after week and it turns into a test of patience

    One of the narratives is that the politicians etc are conducting a courteous and issue based campaign: while the grass roots on both sides (but mainly the yes side) are abusive and irrational. I know they qualify with “a minority” but that is not actually the impression they are leaving.

    It is obvious to anyone involved in this debate that it is official unionists who are mainly responsible for the smearing and the abuse: but that is not reported much because there is a deferential thread in UK politics which frankly fears and despises an engaged populace. Heaven forfend that the people talk to each other directly: where will it end?

    One consequence of that mindset is that for many years those who stand outside the officially sanctioned “limits of debate” is demonised as a “nutter” of some stripe or another. This has worked well for decades, and by now anyone who takes even a slightly left wing position is marginalised. All the political parties (and I include the SNP) are afraid of departing too far from what they perceive to be the “centre” and so anyone who is even slightly left of what used to be the centre (and still is in my view) is unrepresented in parliament and in the media.

    WOS does represent that voice: it challenges those tight limits which frame the debate and so it gives everyone information which is relevant but said not to be, in the MSM and also in the official campaigns.

    It may be that will frighten the horses. I don’t think so. A great many people welcome a voice which has been absent for so long. A great many people do not like the mudslinging in Westminster with its artificial distinctions and its substitution of manners for principle. But those same people do not object if lies are called lies, when the lies are plain for all to see and can be evidenced. In fact the failure to do that is part of what has brought our politicians and media into such disrepute.

    I honestly believe that people value the alternative narrative this site provides: and if folk arrive here because they wish to gawp at the crazy cybernats, ok. That is not why they stay.

  281. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Love “Wings” Rev. But I think you overstepped the mark this time. Perhaps a toned down comment would have done, but a bit of controversy brings the site to the fore. If he does apologise to the Weirs, then I look forward to your apology on “Wings”.”

    If he does apologise to them, which he won’t, I’ll be more than happy to publicly retract the description.

  282. Weedeochandorris says:

    Rev Stu, you knew this would happen that they would come for you. They think they’ve got you where they want you. I, for one, trust you 100% because you know exactly what you are doing. More publicity, more people’s attention being drawn to the lies, smears and nasty tactics of the MSM. Even more ordinary folks thinking what’s going on here? Let’s take a closer look.
    The big bullies are hopping mad that anybody should dare to stand up to them. Chests puffed out in indignation. Egos bellowing how very dare you. End game coming soon. Be alert.

  283. R whittington says:

    @Ian Macdonals I wouldn’t bother to even engage with people on this site who attack with personal comments those who do not hold the same view.

  284. Helena Brown says:

    I am disgusted at some of you here. Stuart runs Wings, we all support him and if the official YES group want to distance themselves well so be it. would appear they are pretty spineless.
    I have been round all the various Blogs concerned with the Referendum this morning and the lot of them are all saying that Better Together, No Thanks, what ever, are working to SHUT US UP. They want the quiet non debate, they want to demonise us. Well I for one do not give a damn. I got an bit of abuse through my google account from some twat in England. I am not greetin this morning and if Alex Johnstone does not do the crime he will not get any abuse. He was a big boy when he was the bully abusing the Weirs, he got what HE deserved. End of.

  285. Nana Smith says:

    @Helena Brown

    Well said Helena

  286. Simba says:

    And I was just thinking of subscribing to the Herald website so that I could get the full Sunday Herald which I can’t buy here. Gardham has just saved me some money.

  287. Grouse Beater says:

    Ian MacDonald said: You say I am middle-class and buttoned up, and a victim of my own self-imposed anxieties.

    The teaching and attitude of our parents, education, and religion have a great deal to do with how we react to situations to a far greater extent than any of us realise or if we do, dare admit.

    So has over 300 years of subservience to a powerful neighbour.

    I criticise your misplaced anxiety over what people – whom you do not know nor have consulted nor were elected to represent – might feel about a mild descriptive word, ‘scum,’ expressed within a well-considered context, that context removed by the opposition.

    An over-weaning attitude to an unidentified group can be construed as redundant if not patronising.

    Political acuity tells me not to pick up the enemy’s bomb and wave it in the air as if a gift to be analysed.

  288. Helena Brown says:

    @ Fiona, Bravo, and very well said. More measured than mine I would add.

  289. muttley79 says:

    Robin McAlpine has an interesting article on Bella Caledonia on the story about the Yes campaign and WoS:

  290. Allan28 says:

    @ Fiona

    Excellent comment.

  291. TheItalianJob says:

    Good exposure on the msm to you Rev, so can’t be a bad thing. Apology in the Hootsman welcomed if a bit toned down.

    Good supporting article on Bella ref Yes campaign distancing itself from Wings (if that is really the case).

    I virtually only adhere to Wings these days to get all the latest daily news on Independence, like the vast majority here.

    Make now mistake you have the msm rattled as was your intention all along.

    Keep it up young man we are with you in our final goal being acheived

  292. R whittington says:

    When the majority of people vote No in September I suspect the people who used insults like fat scum, bitch, and twat will regret their actions. Surely Scotland is better than this.

  293. Macart says:

    The press really has no sense of self or irony. Simply amazing hypocrisy from the media.

  294. Grouse Beater says:

    Italian Job said: Keep it up young man we are with you in our final goal being acheived


    I mean, it isn’t as if asking for the return of Scotland’s sovereignty has alienated anybody in the first place!

  295. Proud Cybernat says:

    @ Fiona

    Were there an UP VOTE button on WoS you’d have had a barra-load of them for that comment. Very well said and well done.

  296. Colin says:

    Who cares what the MSM says about you, or us for that matter. Everyone knows that the press and the BBC are biased towards a no vote.

    Just think how many more unique visitors you will get with the publicity and how many more people will vote Yes after visiting your site.

    Let’s concentrate on a Yes vote in September, then we can tackle the biased, insidious press with boycotts and other nice things.

  297. Grouse Beater says:

    I tell you what, let’s withdraw our request to govern our own country again. It offends some people.

  298. @R whittington – Thanks for the pointer.


    I totally support what you are doing Stu, you do amazing work – I just have an honest concern that name-calling plays into BT’s PR strategy of demonising YES supporters as nasty and divisive.

    I don’t think anyone is suggesting Wings or anyone else should tone anything down. Totally ramp it up on exposing lies and hypocrisy. It’s just more effective to do it clinically and with humour, but without giving BT ammunition – as you do 99.9% of the time. The only way BT will be able to stop our message getting across is if we provide ammunition for their distraction strategy.

    Keep up the incredible work! 🙂

  299. The Rough Bounds says:


    You and others on this site will have to lighten up. I fully understand your frustration believe me, but intemperate language accomplishes nothing; particularly if it’s in defence. Dignity of manners conveys a sign of reserve strength.

    A Latin phrase you may know of is ”Castigat Ridendo Mores”.

    I means basically, ‘laughter succeeds where lecturing won’t’.

    Alex Johnstone isn’t all that bright. Highlight his dullness by the use of pithy comments and amusing witticisms…and please give that twitter stuff a body swerve. 140 characters isn’t nearly enough to enable intelligent argument.

  300. Les Wilson says:

    A great article on Bella,who among other things give a good boost of support for wings.
    A good read, it pleases me and I am sure will please our hard working Rev.

  301. Helena Brown says:

    Grouse Beater, No we will not. We will all get behind Stuart, and support him.
    Those who think he offended that Man Alex Johnstone really need to read the article he wrote, it will be on Archive. Read that and tell us how Stuart offended that man’s sensibilities, I doubt he has any. Too right he will get an apology if he goes first.
    Some how it will be a cold day in Hell with that happens.

  302. Grouse Beater says:

    Rough Bounds: You and others on this site will have to lighten up

    There is more good humour and wit on this site in a day than in all the opposition’s utterances, Horiatio.

  303. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    dick whittington

    One can always sleep when one is dead.

  304. Vince Diaz says:

    Yes Scotland has ordered the discontinuation of a leaflet recommending voters seek out information from a website that branded an MSP “fat, troughing scum”.

    Pro-Yes blog Wings Over Scotland made the online post about Conservative North East Scotland representative Alex Johnstone on Tuesday night.

    Yes Edinburgh North and Leith published a flyer directing people to a number of pro-independence websites including Wings Over Scotland.

    The group said the pamphlet was “c/o Yes Scotland”.

    In a letter to Yes chief executive Blair Jenkins, Mr Johnstone said: “While I don’t take great delight in reading a tweet from Wings over Scotland describing me as a ‘fat, troughing scum’, it’s not something that bothers me unduly.

    “What does concern me, however, is when idiots like this are given legitimacy by organisations like yours which are supposed to rise above personal abuse.”

    A spokesman for Yes Scotland said: “Mr Johnstone is wrong to say this leaflet was issued from the office of Yes Scotland.

    “It was a local leaflet produced by a local group in Edinburgh, which provided links to 20 websites for information, and its distribution has now been discontinued.

    “Yes Scotland has taken immediate action on this complaint — which is rather more than has been done by the leader of the No campaign, Alistair Darling, who has still not apologised for his intemperate attack comparing Scotland’s First Minister to a North Korean dictator.”

  305. Grouse Beater says:

    Helena Brown said: No we will not

    You bet we won’t!


  306. Tartan Tory says:

    Rather than sit here fueling the fire, I’ve just ended a polite (but firm) call with YES Scotland in Hope Street. What good it will do, I don’t know.

    The upshot is that ‘apparently’ the Wings site is, to all intents and purposes, linked in the eyes of many with Stu’s own twitter account.

    This is not the case for me, as I have neither the time nor the interest in Twitter to be concerned with it.

    However, notwithstanding the above, I do understand what they are saying and I will repeat my earlier assertions that, regardless of how uneven the playing field may be, we need to remain above the gutter in ALL our written material if we are to be a credible source for the undecided voter.

    Like Ian MacDonald, I can swear and curse at will, but when I write, I always (try to) take care that my ramblings could be read by people with sensibilities which are more reserved than my own.

    We are not here to fight for committed Yes voters. Nothing anyone says on here will change my vote. A misguided eezy calling me a troll does not change my political opinion.

    However, a genuine ‘undecided’ coming to Wings for the first time will not want to shield their screen from an eight-year-old child. Furthermore, that ‘undecided’ can be put-off coming here at all if it is associated with a rant akin to a tourette’s convention.

    Let’s not forget what we are fighting for and who our target audience is. Please.

  307. Grouse Beater says:

    Panda reports: A spokesman for Yes Scotland said: “Mr Johnstone is wrong to say this leaflet was issued from the office of Yes Scotland.

    Aha! More skulduggery.

  308. @Grouse Beater

    I note that in your response you put forward no evidence for your personal insults of me, and no arguments about a better strategy for dealing with the BT PR demonisation strategy than attempting to not feed it with name-calling.

    If you do have any evidence or arguments on those points I remain interested in hearing them.

  309. JLT says:

    Ian MacDonald,
    Totally agree with you. There are comments appearing that will only chase neutrals away should they read them.

    Personally, I would concentrate on the politics once more. There are now posts appearing where a couple of folk are now mouthing off about others over a perception of perceived ‘weakness’. I would rather we didn’t, but instead moved on as a unified voice than dissent over who’s ‘not manning up’.

    Concentrate on the politics, folks. That’s what it is really about.

  310. Brian McHugh says:

    Brilliant Stu… Unionists play the faux outrage card as often as they lie. It must just come naturally to them.

  311. Colin says:

    Any abuse from the Yes camp is not always what it seems, dark forces are certainly at work, as Mr Robertson would say.

    Have a look at the link below then google the Joint Threat Research Intelligence Group, that is where some of the abuse is coming from.
    And no I don’t wear a tinfoil hat, you can see these people in online forums like the Guardian, new poster, 450 posts in a month and all aimed at maligning the independence campaign is no coincidence.

  312. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

    Then they fight you.

  313. velofello says:

    If in conversation someone had expressed the Rev’s opinion of Johnstone I would have agreed with the person. So seeing in print is OK by me.

  314. @JLT I totally agree. This isn’t a devotion competition, it’s a political campaign. There is a reason the Unionist parties hire spin doctors like Andy Coulson, Alisdair Campbell and John McTernan. Vile as their tactics are, they can also be very effective. That is why we absolutely must not play into their strategy, and must try and rise above a slagging match.

  315. Votadini Jeannie says:

    What a depressing thread to read – I don’t think it matters whether we think Stu was right or wrong to say what he did, the whole point of these press articles is to cause division in the Yes ranks.

    And here we are, arguing amongst ourselves over whether Stu was right or wrong, whether Stu should take a break or not, over who’s a troll and who’s not. If I were a new visitor reading this, I doubt I’d be back.

    I know we don’t all agree on everything that happens, but please, let’s not bite lumps out of each other, because we will be the next thing after attacking Stu, in the role of fighting each other as well as the enemy. We need to keep the heid with each other and stand united.

  316. “worst element of the cybernats” (The Scotsman), I’m a member of a sinister “cult.. full of diehard nationalists” (Herald, today).

    Wow, kudos! Here’s little old me, sitting here at my computer, reading Wings and the other websites we all read, not at all fussed by the use of the scum word, adding the odd comment to articles whilst thinking (and hoping) I’m just one of a growing number of yes voters…and all the time I’m one of the worst cybernat members of a diehard cult. Wowee! That’s being recorded for the memoires.

  317. Dick Gaughan says:

    Personally, I think Stu was being overly polite in his comments about Johnstone.

    They’re scared of us, they have no clue how to beat us so they resort to rubbishing us – but in order to do that they need to tell people who it is that they’re rubbishing. No point rubbishing someone unless people know who it is. So they have to talk about us and by doing so they give us more profile.

    They’re numpties. End of. There are more important things to do and talk about other than who called whom a rude name. Move along please.

    Much of the “I like Wings but…” keech is beginning to sound remarkably like “I’m a proud Scot but…“. Far be it from me to suggest it might be coming out of the same byre.

  318. Graeme Doig says:



    As much as this fight has the potential to turn into a scrap (and i don’t mind a good scrap) i think we need to keep up the dissemination of the enemy’s lies with reason and argument and not give them an inch of something to hold onto.

    We need to stay united as there is nothing they’d like more than to see us waste time arguing with each other.

    OT and apologies if this question has been asked or answered already but is this UK brochure thing being delivered by Royal Mail?

  319. Morag says:

    If Yes Scotland are trying to tell their activists to distance themselves from Wings, there’s a short answer to that. I started today by pinning my Yes badge and my Wings badge next to each other on my collar as I always do, and that’s not going to change. My car has two Yes stickers on the rear windscreen with the Wings sticker in the middle. That’s not going to change either.

    Yes Scotland have proudly agreed that they don’t control their activists. Correct. And we will go right on doing what we like. When Yes Scotland itself puts a tenth of the work into this campaign that Stuart has over the past two years, maybe they’ll earn themselves the right to comment.

  320. G H Graham says:

    Anyone who thinks that a minority of Scots will overturn the effects of the might & wealth of the British State & all the people, systems, apparatus & institutions at its disposal by singing from a Salvation Army hymn sheet are naive & plain wrong.

    Let the YES campaign tread delicately & diplomatically if they want to. But that eggshell style of campaigning isn’t going to work to win independence on its own though.

    We need sites like that are willing & able to point out the lies, hypocrisy & propaganda even it it means using colorful language.

    Society is a deep & broad pool of people from all sorts of backgrounds. Some privileged, some at the bottom of the wealth ladder & of course plenty in the middle of the social economic & political spectrum. Throughout, are people who are attracted to sites like this just as there just as many turned off by sites like this.

    And if you don’t like the style here, there are plenty of other places to go to & find the data, evidence & case you think you need to be convinced with before marking the YES box in September.

    But if anyone is in any doubt about the effectiveness of Wings, just consider for a moment that Wings now attracts millions of page views each & every month; more than many of the so called “Scottish” print titles combined!

    Evidence here:

    And the people who make these numbers up keep coming back which is odd behaviour indeed for a supposedly large group of people put off by the occasional sweary word or nasty-gram.

    If you have the time & money, a review of: “Campaigning in the Twenty-First Century: A Whole New Ballgame?”


    might open your eyes, even if it is from an American perspective. Much of it applies to Scotland/Britain too.

  321. McDuff says:

    If YES have been misquoted they should contact Press Complaints . If on the other hand the quote is true then I am extremely annoyed and dismayed that YES would criticise such an important aid to independence.

  322. Paul says:

    Hi Alan,

    Do you want to go to Frenchy’s?


  323. MajorBloodnok says:


    Absolutely. We are doing this for Scotland, not YES Scotland.

  324. Clarinda says:

    If there was no good reason to describe the Tory MSP as such (“scum” = despicable = deserving of contempt)…. I reckon Rev Stu was using the shorthand version of implying the worthlessness of the MSP’s unwarranted slur on two generous Independence supporters …. then there might be some substance to those commenters who appear to be criticising his legitimate freedom to make an astute and evidence-based observation.

    I suspect the odious media shovellers know perfectly well that their trumped up faux outrage, which has been an inevitable theme in the absence of any positive debate from the Better Together – No Thanks wheeze, will gain top publicity whether false and/or malicious. Any factual and substantial rebuttal will, in this biased media atmosphere, only come second – this is what they rely on. It wouldn’t stop me however, and I doubt it will stop Rev Stu as they forlornly hope.

    Seeing more and more YES car stickers around Perthshire and spoke to a young ‘undecided’ who wrote WoS on his arm to make sure he would remember to check this particular blog out – the others with him were smiling and nodding away as I said my bit for Independence – yeh.

  325. Calgacus says:


  326. a supporter says:

    Ian McDonald And we mustn’t bow the head down to have it chopped off either.

  327. Weedeochandorris says:

    I’m totally fed up with Yes Scotland and the Scottish government taking all the lies, smears and nasty stuff lying down. When are they going to really stand up for the Scottish people? When? Surely this isn’t it from now until Sept.

  328. Macart says:


    That was very well said.

    Kudos. 🙂

  329. Democracy Reborn says:

    Sorry to be pedantic….but the Oxford Dictionaries online definition of “scum” is as follows:-

    “A worthless or contemptible person or group of people.”

    Anyone think that Alex Johnstone’s remarks about the Weirs, or his vocal support for the bedroom tax & complete lack of sympathy for the victims thereof (ie. the poorest members of society), weren’t…”contemptible”.

    In other words, wasn’t Stu’s comment about Johnstone reasonably descriptive?

  330. heedtracker says:

    “but when I write, I always (try to) take care that my ramblings could be read by people with sensibilities which are more reserved than my own.”

    Thats nae bad Tartan Tory. Do you mind not swearing, I’m a lady! Complete bollocks ofcourse.

    Lead vote no frightener headline from Press and journal today is “46% of Scots families at war over indy ref, so we hate independence don’t we”

    Scum doesn’t even come close to the ghastly teamGB meeja in Scotland. Not only but also, I’m part of a large Scots, Irish, English family and there is no falling out over Scotland’s future whatsoever. Granted the No votes in my clan are mainly English but that makes sense and its fine.

    So fuck off P&J

  331. a supporter says:

    “Rev Stu, you knew this would happen that they would come for you. They think they’ve got you where they want you.”

    They do NOT think that at all. They believe Wings is far, far, far too effective so they try to smear it and the YES supporters who support it. They have been trying to do that since Wings first burst on the scene without any success because only at Wings do you find the truth about the lies and disinformation that the MSM try to propagate. And we all know that. The MSM has its head so far stuck up in the clouds that it can’t see that most Scots think it’s a joke.

  332. muttley79 says:

    @G H Graham

    Anyone who thinks that a minority of Scots will overturn the effects of the might & wealth of the British State & all the people, systems, apparatus & institutions at its disposal by singing from a Salvation Army hymn sheet are naive & plain wrong.

    Agreed. Yes Scotland clearly think not standing up for themselves, constantly taking the moral high ground, and distancing themselves from controversy is the winning formula. I am ambivalent about Rev Stu’s comments on Johnstone. We know from Simon Pea that the No campaign want us to get involved and react to their provocations. On the other hand, the Yes campaign concede a lot of ground by not being forceful enough (see the Claire Lally episode). I have doubts about whether being nice and respectful, regardless of the abuse thrown at the Yes campaign and its supporters will be enough, particularly when up against the might of the British state.

  333. Richy Duncan says:


    Brilliant. Although i am disappointed in YES Scotlands stance ,nothing will stop me reading Wings.

    Don’t let them divide us folks. Dis agree by all means but remember what we ALL want .

    Independence first

  334. mogabee says:

    I’ve read this blog for a couple of years now and fully back all that Stu. does because he is an incredible and credible journalist. Nothing he says or does is through a “red mist” of rage. He is a professional FGS.

    We’ve all seen the unedifying crap that Better Together(No thanks)try to push out to the public and I understand that Stu. has, rightfully, decided to increase those viewing this site by any means necessary!

    I reckon he’s doing a brilliant job. If anyone disagrees with the direction that Stu. is going, then fair enough, there are other sites out there which may suit you better! Just don’t get your knickers in a twist about a few well-chosen swearies….!

  335. Robert Peffers says:

    I’ve been ain o thay Cybernats fir years. Hooivver, yon Alicsammin gadgie must hae loast ma e-mail addy kis he nivver sends mi ony instructions whit tae dae oan the internet.

  336. Anthony Armstrong says:

    I don’t think you’re doing YES any favours by abusing our opponents, undecideds are just going to think this site is run by a YES nutter rather than someone who’s doing a good job debunking a lot of the crap.

  337. desimond says:


    ‘idiots like this’

    So ‘fat troughing scum’ is bad but ‘idiots’ is deemed acceptable from a member of the Scottish Parliament when discussing a party registered with the Electoral Commission

  338. Kate says:

    I have donated since the very beginning of the campaign, monthly to the YES CAMPAIGN via direct debit, but on reading that little bit in the HERALD where it says Yes distances itself from this site. Means I cancel My direct debit as of today. While I have backed The YES campaign all the way! I believe it is THIS site that has done more for getting the people to change their minds from NO & don’t knows. To a YES.

    And it is THIS site along with some others, RIC, Bella Caledonia, Newsnet, & others, that are standing up to the media & scrutinising their publications. Then giving the people the other side of a story. Usually the Real truth.

    You beat them at every lie they print Rev, then you show them up for the poor quality journalists they are also.

    YES are too timid to challenge , as is the Scottish Government & I AM an SNP member. It someone has to stand up to these people & their LIES & yes, THEIR BULLYING.

  339. Footsoldier says:

    Because Wings is so successful, we must be on the ball at all times. Personal abuse may be fine for some of us but for undecideds visiting, it will be a complete turn off.

    Wings is good to let off steam for committed Yes’s but its sole purpose must be to get more Yes voters, so do nothing that will put even one off.

  340. Bugger (the Panda) says:


    Infowars site is down.


  341. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    I am a little bit annoyed over what has happened regarding Yes Scotland.

    To call Mr Johnstone a fat troughing scum seems to me, to be fair comment.

  342. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Yes Scotland will not win the Referendum.

    The people of Scotland will, despite Yes Scotland.

  343. JLT says:

    Morag says:

    If Yes Scotland are trying to tell their activists to distance themselves from Wings, there’s a short answer to that. I started today by pinning my Yes badge and my Wings badge next to each other on my collar as I always do

    Same here Morag. Have mine together along with a wee brass thistle. Proud to wear both side by side.

  344. Liquid Lenny says:

    Another Union Dividend

    They said they were doing to this when G Brown was PM, I wonder if the timing is to ensure that Scotland has to pickup a bigger of share of servicing the Ruk’s debt when they agree to a currency union. When the debt was reported to be 1.6tn and assets at 1.4tn then Scotland after swapping its share of assets would only have a small debt left to service the interest payments on.

    With this additional official debt, it would costs us billions per year in interest payments, If this is the case time to go to plan B forget the currency union.

    The good news about going to new accounting system is that
    the Uk’s GPB figure is going to significantly increase, as they will now allocate a couple of new “services” to the GDP figures , Prostitution and Illegal Drug Dealing, yup they will do anything they can to boost the GDP figures, what next Slavery?

  345. Colin says:

    @Bugger (the Panda)

    I just went on it, try this this link. Or just google “Goverment Trolls”

  346. Grouse Beater says:

    Ian asked: If you do have any evidence or arguments on those points

    You are generous enough to ask my opinion so I will answer.

    First thing to accept is, asking for Scotland’s democracy returned in good condition offends and alienates.

    Anything less has to be mild and innocuous by comparison, unless it is truth unwanted.

    Second, I did not accuse you of being middle-class though it seemed so. I’m born same block as Connery. Managed to escape to something better. By all standards I lead an existence free of a lot money worries unlike too many living in Scotland.

    I pointed out a bourgeois attitude held. You worry about others as if it reflects upon yourself. Your personal sensibilities, I argue, are not the issue.

    We do what we do for the greater good.

    You’re unable to point to any individual that motivated you to speak out. You express only a ‘fear.’ Had there been a wave of resentment by the public to Stuart’s use of ‘scum’ you’d have a case.

    Considering the vile cruelties and insults heaped upon the people of Scotland – often by those fearful of losing their Westminster careers, you should concentrate your ire on them. Then again, posting on Wings is far easier than a letter to the House of Lords for their shocking, ignorant, scurrilous, and ignominious insults at Scotland’s ambition.

    As for talkin’ plain not posh …

    I do not regard social websites as literature.

    Bella Caledonia gets close only because it invites well punctuated essays, but the comments are not literature.

    They, like comments here, yours and mine, are akin to speech, full of hesitations, non-sequiturs, recasting, repetition, fractured sentences, and strong language, passion being the impetus for emphatic language.

    To a great degree Stuart writes in that self-same everyday spoken word style, but being a fine journalist he makes it flow. He has the skill to develop his argument. There’s no stuttering, no ‘why did I say that?’ cringe.

    He chooses his words carefully to get the desired result.

    When you publish anything in public you take a risk. Sure as rain tomorrow somebody will not like what you say, or nowadays, some troll will appear to test your patience or manipulate your will.

    The difference between Wings and the British press ought to be obvious:

    We seek to build, to dispense confidence, to offer hope.

    The British press seeks to demolish, to undermine confidence, to secure conformity.

    Peace, brother.

  347. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “And I was just thinking of subscribing to the Herald website so that I could get the full Sunday Herald which I can’t buy here. Gardham has just saved me some money.”

    If you want the Sunday Herald on its own, you can buy it for 69p an issue on PC or tablet from PressReader. Discount!

  348. handclapping says:

    One of the great joys of the Scottish constitution is that the recall of representatives is enshrined within it. What is the Declaration of Arbroath but a statement that if Robert Bruce will not represent us we will recall him and get someone else?

    This right should be exercised in respect of all MSPs elect via the list. Why should we be told by the parties who should represent us? Westminster used to have a sort of equivalent in that a new Cabinet Minister needed re-election but that was too painful for the parties so they scapped it.

    Just another pointer to Westminster never works for us

  349. K1 says:

    We are winning. This site is full of ‘older’ people. We were all young once, we have lived and tasted life. I credit anyone who comes to this site with a modicum of curiosity still alive within their minds, with the simple capacity to make their own minds up. People are not stupid.

    A friend told me earlier today that she was chatting to a fairly elderly woman, well known in her part of the woods. The woman mentioned the referendum in passing, said she was voting No, my friend volunteered happily that she was a committed Yes. The woman instantly said, well I suppose if we voted No, we’d be getting more conservative governments’, and that she didn’t relish that idea. Went on to say that she hadn’t thought of it from that point of view.

    My point is, sometimes it’s just a nudge, we aren’t going to ‘convince’ anyone of anything. The whole point being this site contains the information that people seek. They have to engage and figure it out for themselves. This is a degree level course in political/media deconstruction that Stu is rolliing out here.

    He CLEARLY knows what he is doing. This is a modern battle we are engaged in. If this ‘language’ is the measure of the ferocity of the fight, so be it. Nobody is dying here!

    And so to that end, the comment that closely chimes with my own view…apart of course from Stu’s comment above is:

    “You presume too much, a sea of shocked innocents aghast at the word ‘scum.’

    I repeat, We Are Winning.

  350. cirsium says:

    @ Fiona, 12.57

    Well said.

  351. @Grouse Beater

    You are responding to an argument I did not make. I told you I was NOT offended personally by Stu’s comment, so I am not worried on other people’s behalf or asserting my own sensibilities. I never said that any other individuals were offended. I completely agree with Stu’s opinion of Alex Johnstone. What I am talking about is delivery not message, and strategy not content.

    What I said was that resorting to name calling would be used by the BT PR machine to attempt to discredit the YES movement, and put off undecided voters, and that is exactly what they did in the attacks they launched against this site today. That may gain a few readers short term, but at what cost? I recall the horror of the conservative general election win in 1992, and how many felt that democracy had been cheated by the media and a professional negative political campaign.

    I do not apologise for pointing out that the same could happen to the YES campaign now, given how gullible many are to the lines they are fed by the MSM. Make no mistake about how good the Unionist parties are at this sort of thing. If you are playing into their strategy, you need to have a think about whether that is wise, when you can achieve everything else you want to, but just without calling anyone names.

  352. The Man in the Jar says:

    Some amount of bleeding hearts on this thread. My advice to them is go start your own blog and be nice to the unionists. Good luck with that!

  353. Grouse Beater says:

    MacDonald said: you need to have a think about whether that is wise,

    What is unwise is doing their job for them by picking up their crap and smearing ourselves with it.

    The worst name calling I can think of at the moment, Unionist to Scotland is, we are a “region.”

    As Stuart implores – sharpen up!

  354. @K1

    “You presume too much, a sea of shocked innocents aghast at the word ‘scum.’ ”

    Made by Grouse Beater in response to my posts. I wonder if you could point out where I said anything about anyone being aghast at the word “scum”? I don’t think anyone has suggested that in this whole thread.

    It’s difficult enough to have a coherent debate on an online thread without people responding to comments made against arguments which are, in fact, imagined.

  355. MajorBloodnok says:

    @The Man in the Jar

    Well said.

  356. @Grouse Beater

    So you tacitly concede that you are in fact attempting to argue with me about things which I did not actually say.

    I think I will leave it there as far as debating with you is concerned. Not much point in having a discussion with someone who is so incapable of forming a reasoned argument that they talk about another subject.

    Although on a side point, you are taking one out of BT’s PR playbook there, because that is exactly the rhetorical distraction technique which they are using to avoid talking about the central issues surrounding Scottish independence. I hope you can at least appreciate the irony in that.

  357. Morag says:

    There are a few people on this thread who need to get a room.

  358. donald anderson says:

    Ye’se wull need tae stoap referring tae fat basturts as scum

  359. G H Graham says:

    YES won’t win this referendum on their own. Nor will the SNP. And neither can savage the media because they would probably never get their opinions aired at all. Therefore, it would be counterproductive.

    Thus, they are limited to one fundamental role; presenting a fairly simple but positive, rational, campaign message, constantly erring on the side of caution while arguing a case which highlights change for good as much as that, which won’t change at all.

    Perhaps by accident rather than design though, they rely heavily on Wings, Bella Caledonia, National Collective, Wee Ginger Dug, Business for Scotland, Wee Sovereign Scot, Craig Murray, Gerry Hassan, Scottish Review etc., to pick apart the pro Unionist propaganda, lies & deceit.

    These individuals & groups can use whatever language they deem fit for purpose because none of them appear to making a case for getting themselves elected.

    And when you are not promoting yourself for public office, you have much more leeway about how you campaign, where you campaign & what language, strategy & tactics you use.

    Governments regularly employ spin doctors to do their dirty work for them. After all, they ain’t getting elected & most of the time work behind the scenes anyway.

    People who demand that Wings etc adheres to the same strategy, language & tone as YES or indeed the SNP are naive & mistaken. The effect would be too anodyne, narrow & repetitive. It would be more likely to fail than succeed.

    So in order to widen the scope of the campaign, we actually need sites like this to use coarser language with much more blunt instruments than YES or the SNP are willing to use.

    Thin skinned folks need to get a grip & realise that if we are going to win this referendum, some of us are going to have to fit lead weights in our boxing gloves.

  360. Tam McTurk says:

    If any of you shoud actually feel the urge to donate money at the moment, a local compaign called Yes Edinburgh North and Leith has a need for new leaflets at the moment and also has an IndieGoGo crowd-funder on the go at

  361. K1 says:

    @Ian, Actually I was just about to post this, when I noticed your comment regarding my use of part of another posters comment to express my view regarding being offended by Stu’s use of colourful language. I rather think your reaching here Ian, to take that one quote from my general comment as some sort of comment about you particulary. As it was clear my comment was a general one.

    In any case this is a response to you that I was about to post in relation to a comment you have made:

    This is not ’92. It won’t happen, to suggest that it ‘could’ is your own fear, which of course you are at liberty to express.

    I don’t think anyone one is under any illusions about the unionist parties and their strategies. I also think if you consider what a thorn in the side of the ‘establishment’ Wings has become, you can’t fail to see that Stu’s ‘strategy’ is out manoeuvring theirs’ and to that end we are winning.

    This is a battle. It’s like a skeleton army has been bedded in for years in part of the terrain. Stu, came along and from a distance shouted Hoy! They ignored it at first. One man, small fish etc. As the months passed, his Hoys’! got louder, not only that, lots of little ‘right enoughs” came up from the rear. That embedded skeleton army have quite late in the day, begun getting off their arses and sent out scouts to check out just how far back this ‘rear guard’ travels.

    To their shock and horror they have discovered the reach of this army, this unexpected vast movement has completely taken them off guard. All they can do now is try to ‘take him out’. Fire everything at him. And if you want a lesson in strategy, you should admire Stu’s, because he is now waving them over, goading them, enticing them to reveal the depth of their shallowness.

    And we who are lving in these times with our moderm comforts, get to witness this battle, there are now literally hundreds of thousands of us right behind him. We are now the watchers watching the watchmen with him. Not a drop of blood spilled.

    As you read my previous comment Ian I think I outlined my view that we are winning, irrespective of occasional sparring between the various protagonist.

    I agree with Grousebeater’s comment simply because it expresses a sentiment articulately, and also, he did go on to explain to you exactly what he meant by his response. It would seem you are hellbent on not engaging in the ebb and flow of discussion with the points you made, and rather more concerned that you are somehow being ‘got at’.

    Can I just say, you are not being got at, at all.

  362. Training Day says:

    G H Graham is bang on. I am a financial donor to this site because I like Stuart Campbell’s style. The overweening caution of the official Yes campaign tends to hack me off. Asking the Rev to mirror the conservatism of the official campaign would be massively counter-productive. Not, I’m sure, that he’d listen to any such request anyway.

  363. starlaw says:

    different thread but , Ive just had a phone call from a call centre asking if I would take part in a BETTER BRITAIN survey. I declined, . . anyone heard of these people?

  364. ronnie anderson says:

    Rev, kin you no jist come oot & say whit your thinking

    re Alex Johnstone SCUMs far to narrow a discription ,for a


  365. Sinky says:


    That kind of talk won’t win over undecided voters who don’t share your passion for politics.

  366. K1 says:


    You specifically asked this of me:

    “I wonder if you could point out where I said anything about anyone being aghast at the word “scum”? I don’t think anyone has suggested that in this whole thread.”

    Not explicity the word ‘scum’, the theme of most of your posts however are centred around inserting your opinion about ‘name calling’. Your posts seems to have this as the main thrust, qualified by how wonderful you think Stu is doing, if he could just ‘y’know, not stoop to their level’ or ‘play into their hands’. It’s innocuous I know. But truly Ian, what are you really trying to say?:

    Ian says:
    “That is why we absolutely must not play into their strategy, and must try and rise above a slagging match.”

    Ian Says:
    “I just have an honest concern that name-calling plays into BT’s PR strategy of demonising YES supporters as nasty and divisive.”

    Ian says:
    “If you are playing into their strategy, you need to have a think about whether that is wise, when you can achieve everything else you want to, but just without calling anyone names.”

  367. @K1

    I take your point about you quoting Grousebeater in a general context. I assumed you had read the whole thread and were in some sense also responding to me. I apologise if I over-reacted to your post. Grouse beater did, on the other hand personally insult me on the basis of zero evidence, so I have in that sense been “got at” by at least one person in this thread. I disagree with you that Grousebeater either explained his point or engaged with me, or that I have not engaged in the actual arguments of importance in this thread.

    I’ve also been a bit disturbed at comments from a number of posters who seem to suggest that anyone disagreeing with any aspect of strategy on this site should just piss off elsewhere as they are not strong-stomached or committed enough to the cause. That’s not the sort of language or attitude that is going to win over undecideds or convince them this is a movement of pluralistic, democratic civic nationalism. All the staunch people, both YES and NO have already jumped off the fence. It is precisely the wishy-washy, handle-with-kid-gloves people that we need to talk over to win now.

    And at risk of repeating myself ad nauseum, I believe that everything Stu does can be done equally effectively without name-calling, and that maintains all the advantages of the brilliant work he does, with the added advantage of not handing useful ammunition to the NO campaign. That’s all.

  368. Black Douglas says:

    To quote John Adams as used in a popular computer game,and no R Whittington its not sensible soccer

    “We’re in a war, dammit! We’re going to have to offend somebody!”

  369. donald anderson says:

    No such thing as a Better Britain.

  370. ronnie anderson says:

    @Sinky, I dont have a passion for politics, I have been a observer of the lowest forms of pond life in British politics,and I dont like Bullys useing the Media to attack
    a couple who have done nothing wrong, how the Weir’s decide to use their wealth is a matter for them.Their other charitable donatations never get mentioned.








    THIS PLAYGROUND IS GOING TO GET MESSY,( in the words of the looney tunes cartoons ) YOUS AIN SEEN NOTHING YET FOLKS.

  371. Bob W says:


    I agree wholeheartedly with your view regarding Stu’s strategic use of language.

    Nope, I disagree slightly, Stu is not hard enough on those lying multi faced scum purporting to be our representatives, who at every turn, attempt to belittle and denegrate both our country and a large proportion of it’s inhabitants, in hope of saving their place at said trough.

  372. Capella says:

    This campaign is certainly a learning experience. I recently discovered that there are “concern Trolls” ie people who express deep concern and reservation about the content or tactics of a campaign website. The solution invariably offered is STOP DOING WHATEVER IT IS YOU RE DOING.
    Constructive criticism is fine. Whinging on repeatedly is boring. Wings is very effective and successful and will certainly be vilified in the MSM from here to the Referendum and beyond.

  373. Suzanne says:

    Still not convinced this story has legs. Think “divide and rule”. Think “how on earth can we sabotage the Yes campaign because nothing we’ve done so far works, I know let’s turn Yes campaigners against each other!.

    It won’t work. Pick up and carry on. Don’t give anyone the satisfaction of seeing an inter-Yes division develop.

  374. Marian says:

    If there was ever any doubt that the media campaign against so called “cybernat abuse” is being orchestrated that has been dispelled by the fact that so many of the unionist newspapers are singing from the same hymn sheet today.

    Its such a shame that this issue has become the talk of the referendum campaign just when the unionists were beginning to wilt. Time will tell if it has had any lasting adverse impact on the YES vote. However knowing what the unionist press is like, it should never have been allowed to happen.

    Many many years ago a former boss of mine gave me excellent advice when he advised me to never write anything that I would not want to see on the front page of the Sun the next day.

    However he also gave me excellent advice on what to write to get across the same meaning without risking appearing in the Sun!

  375. TJenny says:

    Capella says:

    ‘Wings is very effective and successful and will certainly be vilified in the MSM from here to the Referendum and beyond.’, which is why I will wear my WOS badges, with pride, right up to and after the referendum. 🙂

  376. K1 says:


    I don’t think GB was getting at you. He was using a figure of speech to convey the notion of projection.

    In relation to ‘arguments of importance on this thread’. I actually don’t really know what you mean. Many have expressed concern about Stu’s approach or use of the word ‘scum’. These are just opinions. This article is called ‘missing question’ and some took to addressing the substantive parts about the unrelenting bias at work. Others took to commenting about Stu’s use of the word ‘scum’ or in your case ‘name calling’ in general.

    I don’t think it’s been a case of ‘piss off elsewhere as they are not strong-stomached or committed enough to the cause”. I think that’s just a case of disagreement with some of your/others’ pereception that ‘name calling’ is the big bar to the effectiveness of conversions of undecided voters. Personally I don’t think name calling is the issue Ian. It’s not going to be a factor. I’ve already indicated in my previous posts why I feel this way.

    I think we can both agree and it’s fair to say, that no one is enough of an authority to ever say whether language or attitude of any description can be used a spirit level in detereming the outcome of this plebiscite. As I said above people are not stupid and I personally credit others with a capacity to delve a little deeper than surface language when making informed decisions.

    As I also said in a previous post above, sometimes it’s a little nudge, we don’t have to ‘convince’ anyone of anything. This site has drawn in hundreds of thousands of people, they have not been deterred by the language, this is conversational real world language.

    I do not agree with your description of people as ‘wishy washy’ or that they need to ‘be handled with care’. We are not talking about children here Ian. We are adults, having adult conversations. You don’t have to ‘save’ people from themselves. And anyway….

    We are winning. Does that not tell you something? If we weren’t winning they wouldn’t be gunning for Wings, they lost the argument. These are merely skirmishes, of no great import in the bigger picture.

  377. Morag says:

    Marian, I think Stu wanted to be on the front page of the Sun. Whether it was a good idea or not remains to be seen. Most of his ideas are good though, I have to say.

  378. Rhonda says:

    What are peoples thoughts on the Press and Journal and their coverage of the referendum? I can never make up my mind if they are neutral or bias. What does not printing anything about the story say? Rev..Have you any way of finding out how readership levels are with the Scottish Press, ie declining or increasing readership over the last few months?

  379. Cag-does-thinking says:

    That ghandi quote was never more apposite. “Then they fight you”. What the spin doctors are attempting through their friends in the media is to break the connection between the website and the campaign. I’m disappointed if the Yes campaign were daft enogh to fall for it. The only reason they want to stop Wings being referenced is it is helping Yes win the argument comfortably. it’s been their intention for several weeks to attack the grass roots element to the campaign for that is what is bieng effective. For all the millions put into the Yes campaign I’ve seen no adverts or leaflets in my area, despite having had several no/BT things through my door. We are likely to win the campaign by winning the arguement at grass roots level but we aren’t reaching the masses through media advertising in any shape or form. It’s not good enough to expect the no campaign to implode of it’s own accord so the campaign has to go up a gear or two. Wings has definately done it’s bit and this is not the time to be divided. It’s time for somebody to point out the obvious to those running the Yes campaign.

  380. handclapping says:

    On the back of my Aye Right leaflet there are 13 other sites. Stu will run this one as Stu will, thats why we funded him. Not for the shiny badges but for Stu to do what he feels needs to be done. If you dont like the way Stu expresses himself or the subjects he choses to pick apart, there are those other 13.

    Back on topic what is noticeable is that all these independent journalists on all these independent papers that constitute our free press have all managed to pile into Stu for the same reason and in the same way simultaneously. One would almost consider that they were taking their instructions from some “Dark Lord” in the same way that they accuse the vicious cybernats of being directed by Al-Iqsammin as an extension to his day job as FM

  381. Grouse Beater says:

    K1 said: We are not talking about children here Ian. We are adults, having adult conversations. You don’t have to ‘save’ people from themselves.

    Most eloquent. Thank you.

  382. a supporter says:

    Ian McDonald and other WetNats.

    I’m fed up reading your numerous posts here today. If anyone is helping the NO camp you are with these weak WetNat opinions. As someone in a post above has mentioned if you think your opinions are correct go and write your own blog with weak responses and see how far that gets you and the YES campaign.

  383. Auld Rock says:

    Changing the subject a bit, when their ‘book of lies’ drops through your letter box get a plain envelope and address it back to them,with ‘NO THANKS’ and without a stamp of course.

    Auld Rock

  384. Grouse Beater says:

    Aul Rock said: get a plain envelope and address it back to them

    Good advice. Will do.

  385. Rory says:

    As right as you are Rev, why give them the amunition?

  386. CameronB Brodie says:

    All I’d suggest is, the bigger the faux pass the bigger the bait and switch. I’m looking at you, Mr. Alistair “blood and soil” Darling. You may not have uttered the words yourslef but you expressed absolute agreement that this is at the heart of my motivations. I’d challenge you in court if I had the money, so I’ll just vote Yes instead.

    As mentioned previously, this issue a black hole but it’s been a delight to watch the hypocrisy getting a total monstering.

    Andre Williams – Soul Brother in Heaven and Hell

  387. Suzanne says:

    Have just been checking with Yes Scotland. The MSM story is complete disinformation, meant to try and split the Yes campaign by poking the finger at Stu and Wings.

    Yes Scotland were asked by the MSM if they were behind the leaflet; they said it was produced by a local Yes campaign, the name of which was on the bottom of the leaflet. The MSM then reported that Yes Scotland had told the group to discontinue the leaflet, when in fact the group had ended the distribution for that leaflet several weeks previously and were working on a new one.

    Check everything the MSM say. Everything. Go to the sources. 🙂

  388. donald anderson says:

    I liked Ghandi’s quote when he was asked what he thought of Western civilisation. He said he thought it would be a good idea.

  389. Morag Graham Kerr says:

    So Yes Scotland hasn’t actually distanced itself from Wings? If that’s true I’m glad to hear it.

    Wings is doing more for Yes than the official campaign is at the moment.

  390. Paula Rose says:

    Sorry I’m getting lost here- I thought SCUM was an acronym of Social Class Ultimately Matters when it comes to chance.

  391. Suzanne says:

    @ Morag Graham Kerr – yes, I and others have contacted Yes Scotland and discovered it was a load of tosh put out by the Herald. Shameless.

  392. Rock says:

    Rev. Stuart Campbell,

    “It’s been asked before, but threaded comments are a total mess for all kinds of reasons.”

    Totally agree.

    When replying to comments, I address it like a letter or email so anyone looking for responses can just search for their own user name.

  393. Cag-does-thinking says:

    Good point well made Suzanne 😀 Thanks for the important clarification

  394. @a supporter

    If I am a “Wetnat” with “weak Wetnat opinions” simply because I think it will backfire tactically to call people names, can you please explain to me what strong nationalist positions I need to adopt to meet with your approval? It would follow logically from your assertions that to be considered a true nationalist by you, I need to be online hurling puerile abuse at people. Is that right?

    Since that would be such a boon to the NO campaign if we were all to do that, I have to ask the obvious question – are you being paid by someone to come on here and cause dissent?

  395. @K1

    We will have to agree to disagree about the clear insults that Grouse Beater has made.

    We will also have to disagree about the tactic Stu is adopting here. It may work and he may expose the hypocrisy as planned. I hope so. But I think it is a high-risk strategy which could backfire.

  396. Paula Rose says:

    methinks the supporter has supped too much porter – wee dear

  397. Derek M says:

    i would ask you the same thing Ian since this is your 11th post on this thread ,why dont you just accept that what Stu does is up to him , criticizing his work because he called some fat guy scum will have wingers jumping all over you ,at least he didnt call him a nazi so whats worse?
    We might not have our claymores and shield wall and are using this new weapon we have but none the less this is a fight cant you hear the battle cry freedom,freedom,FREEDOM!!

  398. Rock says:

    Lee Rogers,

    “@ Rev Stu

    Y’re doing a great job Stu, no question, for which many thanx. Don’t let the doubters grind you down, just do what you do best.”

    I wholeheartedly second that.

    Stuart has provided a completely valid reason why he called that scum scum.

    The reason WoS is such a great success is that Stuart is able to make the maximum use of his skills without playing to anyone’s tune. I really like the way he exposes liars and hypocrites without mincing his words.

    He then allows uncensored comments and even trolls are allowed to have their say, are given a warning and are only banned if they continue trolling.

    WoS is by far the best example, if not the only example, of quality journalism and freedom of speech in Scotland.

    Compare this to the various rags we have. Don’t call them comics – they are vile and dishonest publications. WoS has completely exposed them as the liars and hypocrites they are and always have been.

    Is it any wonder therefore that the MSM are out to get WoS and Stuart by any means possible?

  399. Defo says:

    Fuck ’em. Johnstone, Gardham, the lot of them. They know what they’re doing, as their bit in undermining the democratic process. And why.

    Implying the Weirs were gullable, to score points was low.
    Ergo Johnstone is scum. If the Rev got anything wrong, it was in failing to note he is a nailed on bawbag, to go with it.

    As for Gardham..

  400. Grouse Beater says:

    MacDonald said: We will also have to disagree about the tactic Stu is adopting here

    Groan! Another pop-up insultee.

  401. Rock says:


    “If Yes Scotland are trying to tell their activists to distance themselves from Wings, there’s a short answer to that. I started today by pinning my Yes badge and my Wings badge next to each other on my collar as I always do”

    My guess is that 99% or more of Yes Scotland activists are also WoS activists.

    Activists work with a passion. So if it comes to a choice, I am sure they will support WoS rather than Yes Scotland.

  402. Morag Graham Kerr says:

    I think my main concern today was the thought that Yes Scotland had actually “disowned” Wings. The rest of the flak is negotiable, and we’ll see how it pans out. It may be chip wrapping by Saturday anyway.

    I was genuinely worried that someone in Yes Scotland had had a fit of the vapours and distanced the official campaign from Wings in the way the No campaign are trying to distance themselves from UKIP, the OO and the BNP. That would have been difficult to cope with, as a member of Yes Tweeddale giving out Aye Right leaflets and telling people that Wings is the go-to site if you’re not of an inordinately tender disposition.

    But for goodness sake, the SNP certainly know that Wings is the guerrilla outrider they can’t deploy themselves, and that he’s worth his weight in currency notes. Yes Scotland ought to know the same. Glad to be able to say that was an unfounded smear.

  403. JWil says:

    Not being able to comment on the previous article about the Daily Express Nazi piece, I am compelled to give this comment here:

    It seems that even the WWII BBC documentaries we are being shown contain lies.

    In a comment in the Sunday Times magazine this week one observant viewer had noticed the following gaffs in the documentary, ‘Britain’s Greatest Pilot’, about one, Winkle Brown – a Scot who was a test pilot who had flown the greatest number of aircraft types of anyone known (400+).

    Brown was explaining how he shot down Fockewulf Kuriers by attacking them head on. An archive film was shown to accompany his statement, except it was not a German Kurier in the film it was an American Liberator being attacked from the rear by a German aircraft.

    Excerpts from American newsreels featured ‘German bombers’ apparently attacking Britain. Most of them were biplanes. Not German planes and not bombers (and, I must assume, not attacking Britain).

    Brown explained how he had visited Belsen. The accompanying archive film showed British prisoners of war being held in Japanese prison camps!

    The documentary was outstanding, but only by virtue of the excellent accounts by Brown himself of his own experiences.

  404. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    This is the first thread, in months, in which I have read all the comments.

    What with having to subject myself to the whims of an employer in order to keep a roof over my head, it has taken me since the back of 9 this morning, up until a few minutes or so ago, to get up to date.

    First of all, I’ve got to say that there are contributors to the comments here who just didn’t GET the full picture.

    It was SO obvious that Rev Stu was using a ‘point-ed stick’ to goad the MSM, by sticking in a totally out of context (scum) comment on Twitter (in which I do not partake) in order to generate outrage in the MSM.

    He succeeded.

    The P&J was a tad naive in asking him for a comment, which, as others commenters have pointed out, was spiked, because it offended the unionist position.

    Thus, Rev Stu played the bigger ball, by playing the lesser man. And if it has brought more people to this site – job done!

    I must say that, contrary to what all the poll results report, I’m well impressed by all the comments here from ‘ladies of the opposite gender’, whom I will not single out for personal kudos. You know you are contributing to the debate, in a far better fashion than me.
    Och, I’m too tired to type more. I’ll just say that I did detect a troll or two in the comments.
    I think we have all, probably, detected them.


  405. BMc says:

    I met Alex Johnstone once. He was on my doorstep canvassing at the last election. I enjoyed our lengthy chat, primarily because I knew nobody else could be swayed while he was stuck talking to me! He learnt what my politics are and my support for independence, but I was pretty surprised when he told me that independence, and making damn sure it never happened, was what brought him into politics.

    Pretty sad, I thought, that anyone would aspire to a political career purely in order to stop something happening. So horribly negative – Surely all politicians start out wanting to change the world for the better! Looking back to that chat, maybe it goes some way to explaining why Johnstone, even by BT standards, has managed to go well beyond the pale.

  406. Horseboy says:

    Calm Down Calm Down Calm Down.
    Keep Calm and Carry On.

    YES Scotland obliged to come out with strong statements.
    To hobble the MSM and to comfort our YES rightwing.

    BBC Scotland didn’t run with Tory MSP Alex Johnstone faux cybernat outrage today. Reading Glasgow Herald’s political editor Magnus Gardham story, its a non story. BT Unionist trying to control airwaves by criticizing and censorship.

    Sticks and stones. Words don’t physically injured or physically hurt. In a true democracy, which both my parents actually fought for in WW2, freedom of speech is paramount.

    I’m centre left centre right centre, depending on weather.
    We all want same outcome, Scotland’s Independence.

    After Independence Day I don’t know who I’ll vote for, but I know it will be a Scottish Party not a UK Party.

    ps. Bill Bailey has come out for YES, as Billy Bragg did.

    Derek Bateman saying Labour MSP Kezia Dugdale dropped already from BBC Radio Scotland’s Ken MacDonald’s Headlines Sunday morning show, before she begun! Tune in to see who takes over. BBC Surprise Surprise.

  407. Stephen says:

    Is Gardham a member of the Labour party?

  408. donald anderson says:

    Johnston should apologise to al fat scums.

  409. john king says:

    “@Bugger (the Panda) no problem. Do bear in mind that the weather can get nippy in September and its a really nice day today.”

    Oh look A squirrel,
    and its wearing sunglasses.

    “the Chinese Premier who I believe we monstered by believing him to be an undemocratic crawling wee shite!”

    What the hell is wrong with you man, next you’ll want to vilify that nice man Putin! 😉

    JLT says
    “Give them no ammunition”

    Maybe we should just fire these then JLT?

    “I may be wrong but I don’t ever remember Alex Johnstone being elected to the Scottish Parliament”

    Your not wrong, he is indeed a list MSP

    “I promised myself: “No more cult jokes”.”

    Ah that’s a shame, so you’ll no be wantin tae join in the mass wedding in Princes street Gardens on the 24th o March 2016 then when the good Rev will marry thousands o folk in an independent Scotland? 🙂

    “Get off your know-it-all told-you-so pedestals and show some bloody solidarity, appreciation and loyality to a fellow comrade!”

    What Black Triangle said.

    “He also said he was very far from finished with the Scotsman. Pass that popcorn.”


    Ian MacDonald says
    “He is right about THAT.”

    No he’s not, he’s an idiot for handing the media a free shot at goal by attacking a non existent cybernat army of hate posters, he handed them an excuse.

    Helena Brown @ 1.07
    At last
    gaun yersel Helena.

    Tartan Tory says
    “A misguided eezy calling me a troll does not change my political opinion.

    However, a genuine ‘undecided’ coming to Wings for the first time will not want to shield their screen from an eight-year-old child. ”

    1st point about calling people trolls I couldnt agree more , too many times we shout troll,

    2nd point I couldnt agree less,
    if you feel an eight year old shouldn’t be subject to the “salty” language in Wings then you would be well advised to keep your copies of Daily Mail, Record ,Express, Scotsman, Herald Guardian under lock and key.

  410. Tom Platt says:

    The Weirs, Wings over Scotland and a huge number of people and organisation have done wonders for the “Yes” effort. The momentum is now with us.

    “Yes” Scotland are our “front of house” people. Even if some of “No” behave in a manner that provokes some to want to use the word “Scum” doesn’t mean that it should be used at the front of the house nor that “Yes” should back it if we fail to aim words inappropriately.

    Rev. Stu is absolutely right IMO to look and comment negatively about the skummish words used by the Conservative MSP about the Weirs. I would support that description and happily use that word to describe his spoken words. He patently isn’t “scum” though, as anyone who examines all of his record as a human being will know. To categorise him, or any other human, as scum just devalues our own language.

    We need to keep the front of the house respectable. If we can’t run a respectable house there is no point in Indy.

    Well done the Weirs and Wings over Scotland, I say. We need to maintain the unity and discipline to to win. Rev. Stu’s powerful words have been so hugely important to what has been achieved so far. Let us not risk blowing it all by disunity or loose talk in the last few weeks.


  411. Alastair Naughton says:

    Keep up the good work Wings! The only news source worth reading 🙂 (well, I’m sure you wouldn’t grudge me Newsnet and Bella Caledonia as well, would you?)

  412. a2 says:

    Rev Stu says

    “You get the enemy to deliver your leaflets to its own people, by any means necessary.”

    The great irony being that simultaneously our friends are insisting that your leaflets should not be delivered to anybody.

    I’m now thinking that openly criticising the official yes campaign can only have the result of another big story (supposedly exposing a split)in the press leading undecideds here with the added benefit of reinforcing the idea that it’s not just about the SNP/Salmond.

  413. Art McGuinness says:

    Unfortunately despite all the fantastic info and analysis on this site the media will always pick up on the comments you made about him on twitter. Name calling doesn’t work whichever side you are on, and you should rise above it. Simply list the facts and give analysis.

    Many readers of newspapers and viewers of TV believe what they read and hear.

  414. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Unfortunately despite all the fantastic info and analysis on this site the media will always pick up on the comments you made about him on twitter.”

    “Unfortunately” assumes I didn’t want them to be picked up.

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