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The necessity of treachery

Posted on November 17, 2014 by

Readers, since Sunday we’ve been endeavouring on your behalf to find the elusive alleged Scottish Labour conference resolution to oppose the renewal of Trident which Neil Findlay insists is still current policy. We’ve drawn a blank, and Mr Findlay himself has been no help, telling an alert reader that:

“I can’t recall the year – it was quote [sic] some time ago but I am reliably informed it hasn’t changed since then.”

We still haven’t tracked anything down, but thanks to another alert reader we did find a fascinating piece in the archives of the Herald. We share it with you below.

Actions louder than manifesto words

For one who has, since I’ve been old enough to think, held it to be axiomatic that possession and implied use of nuclear weapons are bad, and probably mad, I feel curiously detached from from the current excitements about Labour’s policy review.

Over the past decade, I have fought three elections on a variety of defence policies, the details of which are now largely academic since all three elections were lost. I can’t honestly recall feeling more righteous about Labour being defeated in 1983 or 1987, than I did in 1979.

I am not a great reader of policy statements or manifestos, far less a believer in their contents. It’s almost certainly a mistake to believe that spelling out aspirations in the form of a detailed programme helps any party to get elected. Mrs Thatcher has never made that error.

Equally, it’s a mistake to get too worked up about what is and is not being promised since the relationship between word and subsequent deed is far from guaranteed, even if the electoral hurdle is cleared. That’s possibly more true, in recent political history, about promises to get rid of weaponry and military bases than about any other single subject. Ask the Greeks or the Spaniards.

But even more relevantly, consult what happened in the 1960s. Harold Wilson didn’t need tying down to a unilateralist commitment – he offered it with banners flying. He had proposed ‘the permanent rejection’ of British nuclear weapons and foreign nuclear bases.

When Polaris was purchased, he declared contemptuously that ‘it will not be independent, will not be British and will not deter’.

Then on his first visit to Washington as Prime Minister, he ratified the Holy Loch agreement which Macmillan had entered into and, for the rest of his time in office, presided over a defence policy which was predicated upon possession of nuclear weapons.

Who knows whether Wilson ever believed his own anti-nuclear rhetoric? But the certainty is that intense pressures were, and would increasingly have been, brought to bear by the United States to make him abandon it. Wilson was a great believer in the ‘special relationship’ with the US and was forever on the hot line to LBJ to reinforce the myth.

The point is that military policy, nuclear or non nuclear, is an extension of foreign policy. Unless there is independence of actions in international affairs, it is extremely unlikely that there will be unilateral action on nuclear weapons – whatever it says in a manifesto.

Yet we know that the actions, even of a progressive Labour Government, will be constrained by alliances and other imperatives.

These will include the political climate of the day. It is unlikely that the Labour Government after the next General Election will have a large majority. If there is a knife-edge majority for instant removal of nuclear weapons and a similar division in the country, it is difficult to see the action being carried through with the sweeping gesture which Labour’s last manifesto envisaged.

If these are the realities, then why get hung up on the word ‘unilateral’? What surely matters more is to secure a Government which is genuinely committed to de-nuclearisation at as fast a pace as objective circumstances permit. It’s more important to say it, mean it and then possibly be in a position to achieve it, than to put your faith on a word in a policy review or manifesto. 

There are aspects of the defence document which I would quibble with, but the general thrust is sensible, honest and in tune with the public mood. It seems far fetched to suppose that the majority which has hitherto withheld support from unilateralism, and which now senses the possibility of getting rid of nuclear weapons in all countries through negotiation, will suddenly change its mind.

Of course, some critics regard it as treachery to take electoral calculations into account in such high moral matters. I take the contrary view that it would be treachery not to, for there are an awful lot of people who yearn for a Labour Government as a matter of necessity, rather than as an optional extra, and whom we have not served very well over the past decade.

The Wilson years of Polaris and Vietnam created a generation of cynicism about Labour politics. The Kinnock government will have to be of a very different hue, if the same sense of disillusionment is to be avoided. I have faith in that prospect, and being honest about what is electable and attainable seems to me a good start in that direction.

There will have to be a foreign policy based on different criteria from those of the sixties and seventies, without the slavish adherence to Washington’s line. That will extend logically into a determination to work towards the elimination of nuclear weapons. These are ends worth attaining and, through the possession of power, expanding upon.”

The author was ultra-tribal now-Scotsman columnist Brian Wilson, and the date was 10 May 1989. It’s an intriguing insight into how Labour became the party it is today, and into how much weight voters should ascribe to Labour’s commitment to long-term disarmament. It wasn’t until over five years AFTER that piece that Trident came into service, and after another 20 on top of that – more than half of those 25 years under Labour governments proclaiming policies of disarmament – it’s still with us.

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  1. 17 11 14 17:41

    The necessity of treachery | Politics Scotland ...

115 to “The necessity of treachery”

  1. Grouse Beater says:

    Brian Wilon – a footnote in his own tawdry history.

  2. handclapping says:

    So even then it was a case of sod morals or ethics, electability is all.
    As we saw, the trouble with that is that if you elect them you have no idea what they will actually do with the power.

  3. Desimond says:

    ‘it’s a mistake to get too worked up about what is and is not being promised since the relationship between word and subsequent deed is far from guaranteed’

    – Brian The Prophet

  4. Morag says:

    Has Brian Wilson Been To America, I wonder? Has he been part of this “British-American Project” designed to take left-leaning British political hopefuls and turn them into pro-US hawks?

    The Labour party seems to be riddled with the products of this exercise. Not only do they mould them into the sort of right-wing wonk the US requires in power in Britain, they seem to train them in how to continue to attract the less thoughtful sort of tribal “my grandfather voted Labour all his days” voters.

    Scotland has its share of them. Murphy, Alexander and so on. Is Wilson another?

  5. bugsbunny says:

    Is it only me, or does Brian Wilson make your skin crawl? I feel like I need a shower after seeing his big Moonface gawping at you from a Newspaper.


  6. Grouse Beater says:

    Wilson – ‘Wilon’ sounds suitably forgettable.

  7. anton le grandier says:

    “progressive Labour Government”-what a fucking oxymoron.Yes,well,our Brian will,I am sure,have forgotten all of this and of course “progressed” to a position exactly the opposite.

    “Unless there is independence of actions in international affairs, it is extremely unlikely that there will be unilateral action”

    goodness,brian using the “I” word.another tale of slippery deception and outright cant.

  8. Nana Smith says:

    Morag asks Has Brian Wilson Been To America, I wonder?

    I believe Wilson has an apartment in Manhattan, just some small payment for his non executive directorship at AMEC

    Good old labour troughers eh? they do manage to make themselves terribly well off while serving the public. Geez what a bloody laugh, serving the public No self serving Yes.

  9. Flower of Scotland says:

    Great article Rev! I will use this. Thanks for digging around and getting us this information that SLAB would rather keep hidden. As for Brian Wilson……

  10. gillie says:

    “some critics regard it as treachery to take electoral calculations into account in such high moral matters. I take the contrary view that it would be treachery not to”

    No wonder people are puzzled by what Labour stands for.

    What is the point of becoming electable if you have abandoned all you stood for?

  11. Juteman says:

    I liked this line.

    “I am not a great reader of policy statements or manifestos, far less a believer in their contents.”

  12. Martin Wood says:

    Problem is..

    There are some people who will take their info from the mainstream and believe it.

    We still face an uphill battle to get the message across whilst the majority are spoon fed and make no effort to get a contradictory perspective.

    I still talk to Labour voters that see these messages as gospel and somehow make a difference to the overriding influence of Labour party MP’s South of the border.

    Voting for a “Scotish” Labour party MP because he takes a different stance to the Labour MP’s in England will make zero impact on the right – wing policies favoured there. We can see that

    Unfortunately a large number of people (that we really need to convince otherwise) believe Neil can make the “lurch” to the left and the British Labour party as a whole will somehow follow suit – or worse – they know it will make zero difference but will vote Labour out of loyalty.

    Until we get our message ” on the telly ” and “in the papers – it will be the referrendum replayed. With effective brainwashing of a large part of the electorate to vote Labour.

  13. wingman 2020 says:

    “Equally, it’s a mistake to get too worked up about what is and is not being promised since the relationship between word and subsequent deed is far from guaranteed, even if the electoral hurdle is cleared.”

    Finally, I understand. The penny has dropped with me. For 40 years I have been completely naive.

    I thought party manifestoes were an express record of the intentions of the political party. A manifest is a list of items, a cargo. Factual, measurable and transparent.

    Now I understand that manifesto in political terms is the other meaning. Things that might manifest. It means demonstrate things that could be done, and could happen. Possibility, ephemeral and almost esoteric.

    Comes from the latin Manifestus, meaning ‘caught in the act’
    That’s about right. The act of conning the electorate.

    I feel very stupid today. But I guess I am in the company of millions.

  14. Stoker says:

    The very same Brian Wilson who, in the 1980s, never missed the opportunity to inform us all how Scottish oil would run dry in 20 years time.

    He’s still every bit the subservient scumbag he was back then.

  15. Kevin Meina says:

    My highlight of the referendum campaign was calling Wilson a bawbag at a meeting in Largs.The women next to me informed me she was his PA and he knows what he is talking about to which I replied I will rephrase that he is a lying bawbag.

  16. Clootie says:

    …so you can say anything OR not say anything about any subject before you are elected. It doesn’t matter either way…as long as you get elected

    Did I get that right?

  17. Kenny says:

    Stu, we desperately need you to create a WEE RED BOOK. It is imperative that Labour is smashed, because then the SNP can hoover up their voters. I was also thinking much about Wales recently, and how the national demolition of Labour would help our Welsh friends in PC so much, because they (or possibly the Greens) would be the obvious choice to step into the void left by Labour (the Red Tories obviously are a void, of course).

    So, please, let us all help to create a WEE RED BOOK. It is imperative for the election campaign.

    Also, even more importantly for our main goal, is a WEE SILVER BOOK. We all know that the elderly fear change and independence. But because so many voted no, that means that there are rich pickings there to be had. If we could only get the figures up to around 50%, we would have no age group against independence. I honestly think this is where the whole war could be won.

    I think elderly people enjoy the company of the young. We need to get out and talk to them, and I feel if only everything were condensed into a WEE SILVER BOOK, things would be so much easier. Really, it is only a case of bringing the facts together.

    While having a majority of SNP MPs at Westminster next year from Scotland will be great, let us not forget that many roads lead to independence and there is a large group of no voters (the elderly) who may have been convinced solely by media bias and ignorance, not because they are at heart against independence…

  18. wingman 2020 says:


    Scoot it would be worse if he was looking through your window.

    And if you see GB looking through your window… warn the lady next door.

  19. wingman 2020 says:


    Wee Red Book… Excellent idea. Preferably blood red.

    Wee Silver Book…. Also magic.

  20. Pam McMahon says:

    A grave digger for the Labour party in Scotland, as he shovels his last spadefuls onto the coffin. They seem to be lining up to bury the corpse at the minute. Probably not standing well enough back from the grave to avoid falling in, though.

  21. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    There may be some trademark issues with a Wee Red Book, readers…

  22. wingman 2020 says:

    Wee Red Book – How Labour Became Toxic
    It’s a sad sad story of filth and debauchery, betrayal and ignorance.

    The History of the Labour Party
    Thatchers Attack
    Legacy of Blair
    Chapter 4
    UK Industrial Wastelands
    Red Rosette on Monkey
    Red Rose of Middle England
    Reluvtant Devolution
    Darling’s Banks
    Brown’s Gold(en) Pension
    Milibands Millions
    Labours Electoral Fraud
    Labour Worthies in Glasgow
    SPADs and SPINs
    Scottish Labour Branch Office
    Standing with Tories
    Labour Lords
    Holy Trinity – Daily Record / BBC Scotland / SLAB – (Caz M)
    Murphy’s Expenses hahahahahaha
    Scotland’s Impoverishment.
    Labours part in the referendum and their obvious motivation.

  23. wingman 2020 says:


    There may be some trademark issues with a Wee Red Book, readers…

    I always understood that books can have the same titles.

  24. IXL says:

    Did Chairman Mao’s supporters not go around waving a wee red book ? ????

  25. Kevin Meina says:

    Off sick at the moment so have to much time on my hands.Watched Daily Politics show on Brit tv2 this morning.A labour mp from a London borough was on and Tory wanted to know how they were going to cut deficit.The first thing he said was cut Trident replacement would be popular on labour benches ,so by the sounds of it it may have been discussed by super Ed and his main branch minions as they are normally devoid of an original thought so why not knick an SNP one.

  26. Mealer says:

    I reckon you should send an email to every Labour MSP asking a simple YES/NO question…Do you believe in unilateral nuclear disarmament?

  27. Devorgilla says:

    What does Wilson do these days to keep afloat now that he is no longer an MP? Anybody know? And why is he no longer involved in parliamentary politics, since he never keeps his nose out of it?

  28. donald anderson says:

    Brian “Scotland is British” Wilson writes, appropriately enough, a weakly column in the anti Scotsman every Friday attacking the SNP.

    He is also on the board of one half of the Old Firm.

  29. bugsbunny says:


    If either GB or BW was looking through the woman next doors window, I wouldn’t be worried about her. I’d be worried about her weans (aledgedly).


  30. gordoz says:

    ‘Wee Brown Book’ ? Good on so many levels !

  31. ScotsCanuck says:

    ….. ah! yes, Brian Wilson, the man with more faces than the town clock.

  32. Kenny says:

    OK, well maybe the WEE RED BOOK name has been done to death, the WEE BLACK BOOK then because the heart of the Red Tories really are pitch black. I do not think an indy Scotland is ever going to come under attack from anyone who identifies with the colour black (anarchists? syndicalists? isis caliphate? adams family devotees?).

    Of course, condensing all the crimes of the Red Tories into a single booklet will be hard. Maybe it needs a whole website, because there have been so many years of so many lies…. A website could also be relevant to our Welsh friends and helpful to getting English voters to maybe turn Green…

    But a WEE BLACK BOOK (or purple, the mixture of blue and red?) would be a vital tool. I wonder who the Norwegians despise more — Quisling or whoever was their Nazi Gaulleiter? The Tories are like Nazi occupiers, who do not pretend to be anything else. But Labour are the most disgusting ("Tractor" - Ed)s, because they are a complete sham, a smokescreen of a party who pretends to be for Scots, lies at every turn, and then stabs us in the back. For support of benefit cuts alone, they should be hung, drawn and quartered.

    And a WEE SILVER BOOK please! I can see a whole series — a wee ermine book, a wee telescreen book (BBC), a wee ingsoc book (Daily Record)…

  33. Betty Craney says:

    How about Wee Blue Book 2 or The Second Wee Blue Book.

    Yessers are already familiar with version 1 and I think people would identify easily with version 2.

  34. Pin says:

    God, that piece sounds considered. Thoughtful, even. What happened to him in the intervening 25 years???

  35. Kevin Evans says:

    Please don’t do a wee red book – it’s an open goal for people to focus purely on China and the red book – remember the articals when the wee blue book got attacked by UKIP claiming it reminded them of the SS.

    Please no wee “red” book. Any other colour but not that.

  36. Stoker says:

    There’s that line again, in the article above:

    “progressive Labour Government”

    Quite fond of that wee mantra, aren’t they.

    PS: How about a Little Black Book then?
    (The LBB = The Lying Blueblood B@ss@s)

  37. msean says:

    Basically,don’t believe a word Labour say,write or infer to be the case (just like we do with the Tories,really!) as it won’t be true,always,they create wriggle room.

    When it comes to articles like this from 1989,I bet Governments wished they had a 1984 style operation where articles and history can be changed to suit. Seems Winston Smith works for Wings these days.

  38. Balaaargh says:

    The high point of Wilson’s career by my recollection was when he was playing in a friendly football match between politicos and journalists. He got his wedding ring stuck in one of the netting hooks along the crossbar and was left hanging.

    It was back in the days before the internet, sometime between 1987 and 1994 but can’t find mention of it online.

  39. jimnarlene says:

    I do like the idea of a wee red/silver book, when does the fund raiser start?

    Brian Wilson, the Scotsman that hates Scotland and all things Scottish.

  40. Luigi says:

    Balaaargh says:
    17 November, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    The high point of Wilson’s career by my recollection was when he was playing in a friendly football match between politicos and journalists. He got his wedding ring stuck in one of the netting hooks along the crossbar and was left hanging.

    Pity you didn’t leave him there.

  41. Luigi says:

    Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
    17 November, 2014 at 5:06 pm

    There may be some trademark issues with a Wee Red Book, readers…

    How about the Wee Red Tory Book?

  42. Fred says:

    I can never look at Brian Wilson without thinking of Mrs Mac in “Take the High Road”.

  43. msean says:

    * Should have said Winston Smith works as a spy for Wings these days 🙂

  44. Balaaargh says:


    Heh, yes. 🙂

    Sadly, I only read about it in the papers. There were a few Labour names of that age playing, I’m pretty sure Henry McLeish was mentioned as one of the players who came to his aid and held him off the ground.

  45. Cadogan Enright says:

    @Kenny 4.55

    I like your idea of the WEE SILVER BOOK. Its about time we started to consider how to shift the vote of the older agegroups our way. It annoys me to hear some of our comrades banging on about oldies with nothing constructive to say about engaging them (us)

    Please note that many of us wingers are oldies too – maybe the REV would set up a parallel blog where we could log notions about what should be in the ‘Wee Silver Book’.

  46. Cadogan Enright says:

    @wingman 5.09

    Cool – theres a guy who understands the Pareto Rule

  47. BrianW says:

    I do love the line “..the relationship between word and subsequent deed is far from guaranteed.”


    Yes, all three parties are guilty of that:-

    No, No tuition fees.. Wouldn’t dream of it.

    The Blue Tories will be the Greenest ever.

    The NHS will never be privatised..

    We will deliver what is as close to a federal state as can be imagined..

    It’s a bit like taking your wedding vows, then getting up to all sorts behind each other backs, then when you finally take that heart attack they stamp on your chest to hasten the event..

    Yeah, I know I said to have to to hold, until death us do part.. blah blah blah.. but you know, what I said then and the deeds I carry out now were far from guaranteed.. You understand don’t you my love..

  48. wingman 2020 says:

    @Cadogan Enright

    I understand the rule.. I am not sure how I applied it just then. 🙂

  49. R-type Grunt says:

    Brian Wilson is a self-serving, egotistical liar who will say or do anything to further his own career. A truly despicable reptile.

    That feels better.

  50. AnneDon says:

    This is why I don’t trust Labour on nuclear disarmament. I remember those years, when they decided they would jetison any commitment to get elected. Then, when they got into power in 1997, we discovered they had actually really done it. They had no beliefs or principles.

    That’s what so useful about multi-lateral disarmament. It means you don’t have to do anything. After all, the newly-nuclear nations are the very people the arms’ companies are selling their technology to.

    In a phrase from the early 1980s, a unilateralist is a multi-lateralist who means it.

    And saying you’re a multi-lateralist means hee-haw. Which is why so many Labour MPs are happy to proclaim their belief in multilateral nuclear disarmament.

  51. Craig P says:

    What is it with Labour politicians and football matches against journalists? People like Ed Balls are never out the Daily Record with a ball at their feet. Is it meant to impress us simple-minded working classes? As most of them look like they couldn’t run the length of themselves.

  52. Shibboleth says:

    It was a pragmatic view from Brian Wilson, typical of any politician. But at least he realised the influence of the USA and was rightly skeptical of that relationship. It needs a brave new world to come along soon and it’s encouraging to watch the debate coming out of Scotland from afar following the referendum and most encouraging. Unlike Mr Wilson, I think most of you understand the future is there for the taking, should you so desire. Just get on with it, sonnet, please….

  53. Iain Gray's Subway Lament says:

    A “wee westminster book” reminding the scottish public of all the broken promises ans lies spouted by the unionist parties on things precisely like Trident (along with informative explanations of the staggering cost and consequences) would be a sure fire winner come 2015.

    All the things like the House of Lords, expenses, endless pointless and costly wars in the middle east, the privatisation of the NHS, the truth about how much welfare costs compared to tax evasion, the gap between the rich and poor.. etc. So many issues and policies that the westminster media and unionist parties would rather forget or distort absolutely ripe for the kind of scrutiny that another wee book would be superb at delivering. 🙂

    To be fair though I’m sure it has already occurred to Rev. Stuart and he is likely considering how best to proceed as his wee blue book was such an incredible success that repeating something like it in 2015 would only be common sense.

  54. Valerie says:

    I like Wee Black Book.

    That piece by Mr Wilson is SO much intellectually challenged horseshit, but to be honest, this is where the electorate have to shoulder some of the blame for voting for this in Scotland in the past.

    It’s why even Diane Abbot told Andrew Neil that it’s shocking what is happening in Scotland, as ‘we just took those seats to the bank’.

    It’s taken the referendum to shine a light into all these dark and dirty corners of the North Britain branch office closet.

  55. Jim Mitchell says:

    He obviously is one of those who beleave that a manifesto is just a wish list, like a letter to Santa.

    I went on one of those check how they voted sites to look up Brian’s record. which included,

    For. The Iraq war, Tuition fees, ID cards and a stricter asylum system.

    Against. An inquiry into the Iraq war.

    And amazingly, both for and against Gay rights.

    However he has never voted on replacing trident!

    I knew we were getting him wrong, he’s even worse than we thought.

  56. heedtracker says:

    Bloody hell. For want of a few Yes votes, these abject horrors could have been consigned forever to the slag heap of Scottish history. How many people have suffered horrible deaths thanks to the rule Britannia machinations of out of their depth buffoons like this?

    Great article.

  57. arthur thomson says:

    I think Kenny is spot on in saying that we should get our young supporters to talk to the elderly. Those elderly people who would even consider changing their voting habits may be influenced by the argument that ‘we are young and we want change’. Of course there are those old folk who would say ‘you’ll learn as you get older’ but I believe that many would at least give it thought. I equally think it is important that it should be women rather than men who canvass the elderly. In fact I think it is critical that women and young people should be taking the lead in the whole GE campaign.

  58. Jim Mitchell says:

    If everything is included, then this book, whatever the colour, isn’t going to be that wee!

  59. Barry Blust says:

    ‘The Wilson years of Polaris and Vietnam created a generation of cynicism about Labour politics.’

    Geesh!! The Wilson years, nukes and Vietnam (on the heels of the 3 being murdered) created a generation of cynicism about most of life itself. I am still cynical, and very pissed off at those evil people whose shadow still looms over the light of freedom and integrity. 50 years have not warmed my heart concerning any govt, anywhere… nor nukes no matter their intentions.

  60. mary docherty says:

    My silver slab voter reads the Metro and says a man gets on the bus and picks up a pile of Metros to hand round local Sheltered complex.

  61. Capella says:

    Brian Wilson was on the board of one of the nuclear industry companies – I forget which but wikipedia says AMEC from 2006.
    You can make a tidy income sitting on the boards of corporations you were supposed to be regulating.
    “Wilson holds directorships in a number of energy related businesses and continues to publicly comment on UK government energy policy, particularly on the subject of nuclear power, which he is a supporter of..” (Wikipedia).

  62. Flower of Scotland says:

    Really like Wee Red Tory Book! Great idea Stu!

    Do you want to crowd fund?

  63. Michael McCabe says:

    Great work as always STU. Instead of a wee red book. How about a wee tartan book. Aye till I die.

  64. Port Jim says:

    Another Labour lie is that they are “the party of devolution” whereas in fact the EU forced them to set up the devolved parliaments. A Wings reader provided (in August I think) a link to a report ( comittee for a Scottish Parliament, I think) showing how this actually came about. Does anyone still have that link?

  65. Port Jim says:

    Thanks for that Fred blogger – I’ve been going nuts looking for that!

  66. Andy_B says:

    STV news has dutifully reported that Neil Findlay opposes Trident, an issue he’ll tackle if elected leader of the Scotland branch.

    Meanwhile Sarah Boyack will tackle housing and education if elected, Jim Murphy will tackle a half dozen eggs if elected

  67. Macart says:

    What a piece of work that fella Wilson is. More faces than a deck of cards. As for Mr Findlay’s apparent memory fail on an issue such as Trident and nuclear deterent in general…

    … just wow.

  68. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    This post from August 30, 2012, complements today’s post perfectly.

  69. wingman 2020 says:

    O/T But worth it for the laugh and the intelligence (as in info)

    The same people who I fought daily on various blogs before the Referendum are on this thread ripping each other up. It’s pretty vindictive. UKIP versus Tory versus Socialist.

    Why should we care? Apart from its rather fun to see these idiots kick the crap out of each other…and the same people claimed that Scotland’s referendum was all about Nationalist Hatred…. It’s important to see first hand the political chaos that currently exists in England.

    There is NOBODY worth voting for down there. People are very unhappy.

    Have a read and a hearty laugh as they tear each other to shreds.

    Loose Cannon Murphy’s incursion into Scotland is just another headache for Miliband to worry about. But meanwhile, he has UKIP and the Greens to worry about in the South.

  70. fred blogger says:

    we really need to demilitarize our bio-sphere.
    lets start with politics.
    scotland is making a brilliant start to this process, truth being one of the 1st priorities.
    and the sword of truth will set you free, the sword imo is the tongue.
    we must as nicola says have our voices heard.

  71. Nana Smith says:

    Andy_B says

    Jim Murphy will tackle a half dozen eggs if elected

    I’m pretty sure the eggs will be poached as sure as eggs are eggs they won’t be paid for by Murphy

  72. caledonia says:

    what about a sma red book then

    Also on a side note which whisky company sided with the union party’s as we are about to fill hampers with whisky..

  73. wingman 2020 says:

    @Andy B….

    Go-to-work-on-an-Egg Murphy, will certainly get egged on and on if he wins and marches into Scotland.

  74. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    This is a complementary read as well –

    “What is Labour’s Trident policy, exactly?” posted on March 26, 2013.

  75. Giving Goose says:

    Brian Wilson is a Sociopath. You have to be a Labour politician to qualify these days.

  76. manandboy says:


    To live in Scotland today is to be treated like a mug by the Scottish and English Unionist Establishment.

    It continues only because we allow ourselves to be treated like mugs – by behaving like mugs.

    I don’t know about anyone else, but I am sick to the back teeth of it.

  77. Archie Neil says:

    First off I’d just like to say that I’m not a supporter of The Labour Party in Scotland and I don’t particularly care who is elected to oversee the final spasms of a dying branch office. But Neil Findlay is right when he claims that the party in Scotland used to take a stance against nuclear weapons.

    This was extracted from, a SCND site.

    “Here in Scotland especially the situation is promising. Despite Blair’s New Labour – New Bombs policies, the Scottish Labour Party has consistently rejected Trident, as have the SNP, and the Churches. Since all UK bombs will be deployed out of Scotland as of March this year, feelings of resentment and exploitation may well intensify the anti-nuclear consensus that already exists. Our new parliament will serve as an arena to highlight this issue, even though it does not have legislative powers. On top of this there is the World Court decision, and the growing international pressure to conclude a treaty banning nuclear weapons”.

    If I remember correctly, the Labour party in Scotland voted against WMD’s at every annual conference. Then shortly after Blair came to power the Labour party in Scotland were told to remove it from the conference agenda and never put it on again.

  78. John says:

    I know this is preaching to the converted, but I read this site daily and follow the arguments closely. I feel that we are concentrating on agreeing with one another and not brainstorming a solution to the MSM desert that exists at the moment. I must say, I do not have the solution nor indeed, do I have experience to offer any suggestions. We do not have much time, leafleting can work both ways and the internet is not available or accessible to many of those we most desire to approach. (Often through no fault of their own.) Come on guys, what do we do and how do we approach those people with whom a dialogue might produce the best return. Obviously a newspaper would be great but not probable so thing people think!

  79. Dr Jim says:

    O/T Alex Salmond is donating all of his pension to good causes…The man’s a giant…a clever giant,but nevertheless a behemoth of a guy, OK Labour ,what you gonna do? any of you greedy persons got something to offer? Maybe some of your expenses Murpho, c’mon folks , lets egg him on

  80. tombee says:

    How about, THE CRIMSON TOME, reliable advice and indepth information on how to avoid the red Torie’s lies and misinformation.

  81. thomaspotter2014 says:

    It’s always been the case that the ‘Scottish’branch office of Labour had no power and were told what to do by their London office.
    It’s not really that astonishing or unknown.
    But I think that the power of Scotland’s Parliament should be able to get Trident removed anyway so I’m not sure leaving Defence out of possible ‘vow’ gains is the way forward.

  82. Defo says:

    Another slabber with a poor grasp on reality. He should have gone easy on the acid.
    He supposedly does a great two part harmony with everyones fav ex-politico. Speaking of the PIE sponsoring cyclops, you would have thunk he might have picked up on what the P in the acronym stands for. Apparently not. Duped ! Ahem.

  83. Cadogan Enright says:

    @wingman 2020 6:04 pm
    @Cadogan Enright

    I understand the rule etc


    what about the wee silver book

  84. stonefree says:

    Wilson apart from other troughing duties was in charge of a sector of the Harris Tweed industry ,(Global Marketing possibly??) where he pocketed (Invoiced them)an alleged £500K or £750K a year ,note that the Global Marketing allows him to travel at other’s expense
    Together with a few lobbying bodies, eg Flying Matters now defunct, and AMEC nuclear promoter
    It’s impossible to say anything positive about him

  85. Stravaign says:

    How about Wee Pink Book.

  86. yesindyref2 says:

    Ideallism versus pragmatism.

    Not all Independence supporters are against the nuclear deterrent, and some of us might go so far as to say that if we hadn’t had them, 100 million people might have died in a world war that would even without nuclear weapons, have been waged with 10, 100 times the destructive effect of conventional missiles, shells, bombs. Not to mention the economic, disease, starvation effect on perhaps as many as another 500 million people as large parts of the planet were devastated, and whole countries left destroyed and bankrupt.

  87. wingman 2020 says:

    @Cadogan Enright

    Ah.. Got you. Noblesse oblige. Here are some ideas. 🙂

    Wee Silver Book – Your Legacy to Scotland

    The Wars our Fathers Fought and why
    The erosion of democracy
    The Right to decent pension and healthcare
    Scotland’s Economic Migration and Modern day clearances
    Thatcher’s Inhuman Legacy
    Westminster Hegemony
    The ignominy of Heat or Eat
    The Labour Lies
    Westminster Fear over Hope
    BBC and MSM Bias
    A better Scotland is possible
    The Truth on Pensions, Currency and Food Prices.
    Change is easier than waiting patiently
    Fear is disabling, regret is a killer.
    Your great grandchildren will thank you.

  88. wingman 2020 says:

    @Archie neil

    “If I remember correctly, the Labour party in Scotland voted against WMD’s at every annual conference. Then shortly after Blair came to power the Labour party in Scotland were told to remove it from the conference agenda and never put it on again.”

    Aye there’s the rub.

    And the start of the Labour problem.

  89. Davie Park says:

    I asked Duncan Bothers-all about this on twitter. He replied;

    “It was in the 80s by my recollection! Of course it’s not binding. The policy forum process supersedes it.”

  90. wingman 2020 says:


    I used to criticise this site as bordering on tea and sympathy group. It’s not, its passed that, but I get the point you are making.

    To harness the collective ideas and energies BTL requires an organised focus. We would have to become more formal with some sort of structure and meeting methodology.

    Having said that I came to realise that WOS acts as a fountain of knowledge that feeds other sites… such as a multitude of Facebook sites, WOS informally arms people to go onto blogs and argue the toss or rebut the propaganda.

    Possibly Stu can comment better, but I suspect he is too busy with investigative journalism to organise us into a more coherent force?

    I am ready to give time and money to a WOS Organisation on a subscription basis.

    Heres a thing… What are the top ten things we could, should or would do as a large collaborative group. Maybe we could vote for the top ten initiatives…? If everyone agreed and a Coordinator was appointed for each one… ?

  91. Ananurhing says:

    Wee Silver Book.

    30 pieces for your consideration.

    My, what a big pension you have Granny.

    All the more for you to pay for dearie. On top of your student loan, crippling child care fees, and your £200k mortgage for a starter home.

    Oh my, but I’ll be in debt for the rest of my life Granny.

    Not my problem Dearie. I’m living the high life on an equity release scheme that nice man from the bank signed us up to.

  92. yesindyref2 says:

    In those days of course, the choice in my constituency was between John Currie Conservtive who, with the ballot won two private member bills. He had one on hanging and one on abortion, the traditional open vote thing, presumably to try to endear himself to Maggie.

    On the other hand you had Brian Wilson Labour who fought to keep the pie shop open after the pubs shut, and in his time as MP had one private member’s bill to allow the families of asbestosis and silicosis victims to continue the fight for compensation after the victim’s death, and for some other bill equally as good for his constituents.

    I voted for him all four times he stood. He’s not the man he used to be.

  93. John says:

    @ wingman
    Here’s a thought. If the bulk of members “love bombed” a certain newspaper (you choose) and increased its circulation substantially would the potential for long term increased revenue overcome the negativity so far encountered? Money over mouth! low member cost, high potential return.

  94. Fred says:

    Well done Alex Salmond for this generous donation in memory of his mother. I believe she was a great wummin for the walking and died near Ryvoan bothy in the Cairngorms.

  95. De Valera says:

    It is worth reading George Monbiot’s book Captive State, the parts about the Skye Bridge financing and construction are a good insight into Brian Wilson’s duplicity.

    Along with Galloway, another anti Scottish nutjob. It is depressing that my children’s future is entrusted to such people. (So far).

  96. Capella says:

    Wee Scarlet Book?
    Wee Red Face Book?

  97. Rock says:

    Dr Jim,

    “Alex Salmond is donating all of his pension to good causes…The man’s a giant…a clever giant,but nevertheless a behemoth of a guy, OK Labour ,what you gonna do? any of you greedy persons got something to offer? Maybe some of your expenses Murpho, c’mon folks , lets egg him on”

    So many Scots voted against the betterment of Scotland because they ‘hated’ the man who has spent most of his life for the betterment of Scotland, with visible evidence of his work from 2007.

    In every other country of the world, such a leader would be revered by the vast majority of the population.

    Why are so many Scots too stupid? Because of the Labour party in Scotland, that is why.

    Let us destroy Scottish Labour in 2015.

    The oldies won’t budge. All our efforts should be on the younger generations.

  98. onelessday says:

    I don’t know if it has been mentioned but Alec is also having gifts given to him during his time in office auctioned off for charity

  99. Brian Wilson says,
    “It’s almost certainly a mistake to believe that spelling out aspirations in the form of a detailed programme helps any party to get elected.”
    The hard question/answer for most moral citizens,
    Technically is he wrong?

  100. Valerie says:

    @Wingman2020, I was thinking of something similar, that a bigger impact might be made if we “led” a charge on one item to make sure it was hammered home to everyone.

    Or we all agreed which sites/blogs we hit all at once, or which “item” was the one to be focused on etc.

  101. liz says:

    @John – a lot of us are organising what to do next.
    It’s best if u join a Yes party cos they have resources.

    I’m in a WfI group in my area and we have hired a local hall – small cos we have no funds at the mo – for 40 folk.

    We advertised on FB and twitter and we have 40 women coming to ask qs and get involved in future planning.

    We have saved posters etc but we want to educate folk who know very little and take it from there.

    We have plans to get experts in fracking, NHS and so on in to talk to folk in the future.

    There are lots of people out there who have never done this before but we are encountering willing people who want to get involved.

    I’ve also joined the SNP and we will be leafleting before the GE in our area.

    So we are getting stuff done and if we get a ‘wee silver/black etc book’, we will put them through doors

  102. Valerie says:

    that all sounds great. I’m a new member to my local SNP branch as are many others, and they do seem quite well organised, leafleting and canvassing.
    I have joined my local FB group for anti fracking and pounded the streets for 2 hours leafleting, but the good thing also was so many SNP members were also there.

    I think so many of us are now just so politicised and anti Union stuff! People in the central belt are really wound up about fracking, and the groups wrote a joint letter to the Sunday Herald this week and it was published so that is really taking off now.

    I was laughing at an English anti fracker today who said
    OMG – you can really tell the Scots are on the scene now! You are kicking ass!

  103. Stoker says:

    Liz @ 11.16pm

    That’s really great to hear.

    From small acorns and all that.

    Look at it this way, what you are doing is progress, many a very
    successful movement flourished from humble beginnings.

    How many successful movements stemmed from half-a-dozen or so
    determined individuals secretly meeting in someones house etc?

    And all these people had is what we all have in abundance – determination.

    Sometimes i think it’s easy to feel nothing is happening out there and a rancidly biased and unsympathetic media doesn’t help the situation any.

    But then you read or hear about other peoples efforts, like you describe, and we’re immediately filled with pride and inspiration again.

    Thanks for that and keep up the good work.

  104. Wingman 2020 says:

    @Valerie. @John

    I agree. We have not harnessed the collective power in here, except on the fundraisers and staking out the train stations LOL

    Stu, how about an article that asks ‘What are the top ten things that folk would like to do?’
    How many people are willing to do something active? And how best to coordinate?

    My number one thing would be a campaign to make sure people knew that SLAB are a branch office. And if Murphy gets in make sure people know his history and modus operandi. (And expenses)

  105. chalks says:


    detailing the troughers one by one, what they have voted for, what they have voted against, what they haven’t turned up for


    Membership of certain groups

    Get my jist?

  106. Muscleguy says:


    In terms of those who wear and utilise black as an identifier you missed out us Kiwis. You may have missed the factoid announced in the coverage of the weekend’s test at Murrayfield (and Scotland gave the ABs a real test) but the current strip is the blackest ever. I predict that soon the ABs will take the field with flesh tones seeming suspended in the air from voids. From the strip, now widely copied, that is hard to grip to one that does your visual system in.

    I have hopes that NZ will vote to change the flag to the silver fern on black. I wouldn’t put money on it but it’s the most common symbol of NZ waved at sports events.

  107. Grouse Beater says:

    Scot: Technically is he wrong?

    Whether consciously or by intuition he’s telling us the herd instinct is the strongest impulse in voting pattern, and his remark comes with a tinge of arrogance – in Scotland the ‘natural’ choice is Labour.

  108. liz says:

    Thanks for the encouragement.

    Had to laugh at ‘Scots kicking ass’.

  109. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Hi John.

    Been busy so just catching up on this topic.

    RE: a newspaper.

    Watch out for this in the next couple of months. Gonna be published, printed and distributed in Scotland, initially as a weekly.

    Even if you’re not on Facebook, try the link; it works for me.

  110. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    BTW: there are comments on that page which I would suggest are “trolling”.

    I’ve been to their office and know the guy who’s doing all the work behind the scenes to make it a reality.

    It’s kosher.

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