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The scorpion stings the frog

Posted on May 12, 2020 by

The practical reason why it’s a bad idea to cave in to bullies – as well as the morality of doing so – is that they see it as weakness and don’t respect you for it, and as such they won’t show you any gratitude should you need their support in future.

And so we return to the Scottish football authorities and “Rangers”.

The abject, craven cowardice of both the SFA and SPFL (along with the entire Scottish media) in dealing with the seven-year-old football club based at Ibrox Stadium has been one of the most shaming episodes in the history of modern Scottish life.

We won’t go over the whole story again. But the extraordinary pretence that a bankrupt club which went into administration, failed to come out and is still going through a bizarrely prolonged liquidation as we speak was somehow resurrected as the same entity and impressively managed to win 54 league titles in less than a decade has finally come back to bite those most responsible for it on the backside.

The magnitude of the shambles currently involving the Scottish game in the wake of the coronavirus crisis can barely be exaggerated. We couldn’t begin to convey it to you adequately, but there’s a decent primer in the basic outline and the key motivation behind the argument here.

Three divisions have already had their seasons abruptly brought to an end, with some stinging injustices inflicted on teams who had every chance of winning titles or promotion or escaping relegation, but the Premiership limps on in limbo and amid bitter disputes and recriminations.

The game’s authorities are simply reaping the whirlwind they sowed in 2012 when they invested everything they had in the resurrection myth and we have no sympathy for the abominable swamp they find themselves mired in. But we did think it was worth finding out what the public – the paying spectators who are the game’s lifeblood, anyone remember them? – wanted.

Since the supports of Celtic and “Rangers” are of more of less equal sizes, and make up around half the country’s total football fans between them, it perhaps isn’t surprising that the public’s view of the situation is fairly evenly split.

The largest proportion, 30%, wanted the league to be curtailed and the title awarded to Celtic, in line with what’s happened in the other divisions, but a remarkably high 25% wanted the whole season scrapped and struck from the record books with just eight games to go. Another 25% wanted to wait until the remaining games could be played, either behind closed doors or in front of crowds – something that’s likely to be many months away. And a non-trivial 20% just couldn’t decide.

(There was very little variation between sexes, ages and party affiliation, but there was a 10-point gap between Yes and No voters on the question, with 36% of Yes voters picking the “give it to Celtic now” option but only 26% of No voters. Fans of irony and coincidence may have noted that that’s exactly the same size of gap as the one there’d be at the top of the league table if “Rangers” won their game in hand.)

It had been suggested – although recent developments appear to have kiboshed the idea – that the knife-edge vote (if you can call 80-20 a knife-edge, although by the league’s rules it is) could have some of the pain drawn from it by league reconstruction that would expand the top division and thereby avoid relegating Hearts while still allowing Dundee United to be promoted from the Championship.

(The playoffs would in fact – contrary to what we understood when compiling the poll questions – be abandoned entirely, at the expense of Inverness Caledonian Thistle, who surprisingly enough are at the heart of the latest shock development in the saga.)

The largest proportion of voters* – 42% – backed that option being deployed as a one-off, but we were intrigued to notice that despite an endless clamour in the media to enlarge the top division permanently, a mere 11% backed that proposal.

*(The question was only put to those who’d answered that the league should be ended now and awarded to Celtic.)

A substantial 33%, meanwhile, wanted the Premiership treated the same way as the other three divisions have been, which is perhaps still surprisingly low. Scots are fond of thinking themselves “Jock Tamson’s bairns” egalitarians, yet only a third wanted the rich clubs subjected to the same rules as the wee ones in the lower leagues.

We don’t think it’s overly controversial to posit that the whole situation would be markedly less heated and potentially destructive if the new Rangers and its support didn’t feel that they had some vested interest in stopping Celtic securing a second nine-in-a-row and a potential record-breaking tenth.

But the SFA and SPFL have only their own cowardice to blame for the toxic sense of entitlement and misplaced resentment infesting the financially-unviable Govan club, which has lost around £80 million in its seven years of existence and had little realistic prospect of balancing the books even before the virus wiped out much of its income stream and the likely value of its playing assets, whose contracts are ticking away.

The scorpion’s doppelganger looks set to drown like its predecessor did (hence its furious thrashing). In that event, not only did a promised cataclysm fail to materialise, things actually improved for almost every other club in the land and for the game as a whole – Celtic won just 50% of domestic trophies in the four years the new Rangers were absent from the top division, but have claimed 100% of them in the four seasons since their city rivals joined the Premiership to provide “proper competition”.

(Such an outcome was wholly predictable – with its vast debt-based resources the new club can damage all the smaller teams, but it also can’t get anywhere near Celtic’s huge reserves of real Champions League money, so the presence of “Rangers” in fact counter-intuitively makes it much easier for Celtic to win things.)

This time, though, it remains to be seen whether the wounded frog can escape being dragged down along with its parasitic passenger.

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    96 to “The scorpion stings the frog”

    1. Bob Mack says:

      @Rev,

      I see your own club is supporting Sevco. Surprised me.

      In any event I couldn’t care less what happens. It seems somehow unimportant in the scheme of things. Call the league as it stood.

    2. Geordie says:

      Oh how Scottish football would be vastly improved if those two effed off to play in some other league.

    3. Republicofscotland says:

      Pity the top two can’t get into a English league, as they tried to do for years I’d be more than pleased, as I’m sure other would if they did and took their ugly baggage with them.

      Mind you the SFA and the SPFL are corrupt so I guess it wouldn’t matter that much.

    4. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I see your own club is supporting Sevco. Surprised me.”

      Is it? I mean, in fairness, being asked to back either Rangers* or Neil Doncaster is the very definition of Hobson’s fucking Choice.

    5. Corrado Mella says:

      What is this “football” you speak of?

      Is it that fictitious recreation of a battle between two cities intent to violate the other city’s gate with an inflated pig’s bladder, kicked by some overpaid cunts in underpants, while rabid nobodies and their beer bellies bellow racial slurs?

      Fuck that. With a sandpaper covered, oversized, spiral shaped dildo and no lube.

    6. Bruce Hosie says:

      Stu

      I’m a Dundee fan and I think they were dropped right in it but partly to blame themselves. I think the fans need to start to believe the power they have and to use it. Scottish football is pretty dire to be honest and needs change. I favour bigger leagues personally but would even go back to leagues of 10 with 2 up to down because something needs to change and soon before the game dies. It is going to be hard enough to get the fans back without the various clubs showing how incompetent and greedy they are for all the world to see. Sevco should never have been allowed to return full stop. That club is just so full of hate, hate surrounds it but the SFA bottled it and if hadn’t been for the fans the greed is good club would never have even relegated them in the first place. Scottish football though is on it’s last legs as long as the same clowns are running the game.

    7. Jason Smoothpiece says:

      Don’t follow football, too much of a neds sport IMO.

      I have two friends who follow their teams, Celtic and Aberdeen every weekend home and away.

      The Aberdeen supporter did not miss Rangers when it went missing, he said the gers were not much loved in Aberdeen.

      The Celtic fan admitted he missed Rangers and admitted he loved to experience the excitement of Celtic Rangers games.

      Both though stated that going to football was different when Rangers were not there. They both were more likely to go for a pint after a game and felt safer and more relaxed.

      Now the Rangers are back regardless of who their teams are playing it’s head down and straight home after a match.

      Before anyone tells me that Celtic fans are more than able to behave like arses I am well aware. But I think with Rangers missing the dafties in the Celtic support had no one to rail against.

      I have been near fans of both teams Celtic and Rangers and they do let themselves down shitey neds I would say. Rugby now there’s a sport.

    8. robbo says:

      Chances of Rangers finishing a season without fecking whinging would be a blessing.

      Why the SFA or SPL listen to a Newco club formed in 2012 is beyond sense!
      What does the Rangers manager think of Liverpool being champions b4 finishing season? Fecking delusional if he thinks Rangers could finish top this season. Celtic would need to lose at least 4 games, 2 of them being against Rangers ! Lmao, ha ha

      Am the mighty Craigmark Burtonians – they win feck awe so disnae matter to me.

    9. Bryan Weir says:

      “The abject, craven cowardice of the SFA and SPFL (along with the entire Scottish media) in dealing with the seven-year-old football club based at Ibrox Stadium has been one of the most shaming episodes in the history of modern Scottish life.”

      Really? Seriously? I think you may have been living in England for too long.

    10. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Really? Seriously? I think you may have been living in England for too long.”

      Feel free to list your alternatives. I certainly consider the mass repudiation of reality, combined with the defrauding of public services of tens of millions of pounds, and an unprecedented level of cheating in sport for a decade, which has been quietly whitewashed, to be a pretty strong contender.

    11. robbo says:

      But it does really- comon the hoops!

    12. Muscleguy says:

      Fitba? wit is that? Twa lads kicking aboot in the park under lockdoon? I suppose I’m nominallly a Killie fan having been whelped there but I couldn’t tell you who the manager or any of the players are.

      I have never bothered to attend a game. Fitba is best enjoyed as a player, watching it is not for me. Rugby is the other way around for me. Not being able to watch the rugby is about the only thing I miss from not having a telly any more.

      Anyone want a superannuated keeper who hasn’t played since 14? I’m still lithe and limber and I can bend goal kicks etc like Beckham, from either foot.

    13. james mallon Drones Over Scotland says:

      There is no English league, there are Welsh teams in it, it is the FA.
      If you can compare Celtic with their European triumph and history with Rangers and their eventual demise, well you did not try hard for research material and again end up talking misinformed shit.
      Celtic and Sevco yes they have grey history but you balance these facts and get a result.
      I used to go to Scotland football matches in a bus only to get abused by anti Catholic vile I was 9 years old,I did not support Scotland too much until Scottish Independence versus the Loyalist.
      I jumped at being a Scottish Nationalist supporter, and notice the Union Flag dominates a Scottish team, as mentioned with a few years history.
      There are a lot of decent Rangers fans and I do not generalise. These historic meaningless emotions within football, religion and politics are adrenalin to the young folk.

      Can we change society!!!!, not with remarks of Banishing a decent team to an English system, bearing in mind they based themselves on Irish cultures (Celtic)

      Lets get at the real problems within our society and let our rights to our Scottish streets go back to 1689. aye lets get into the real world.
      As for STAY ALERT, someone on the TV commented that it could mean DON’T GET FKN CAUGHT.

      As for the Rev, all the best mate, my handle is mate.

    14. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      Bruce+Jason: agree 100%.

    15. lothianlad says:

      lets not forget how passionate the public in Scotland are, or were, at supporting football generally.
      It was the popular topic of most working folks conversations for generations.
      Even the NATIONAL team, pre any devolution settlement, provided a focus for national identity down the decades that guarded a national identity and occasional out pouring of national pride.
      The Unionist authorities however, were quick to realise how this national pride had to be curtailed and controlled.
      This meant that the SFA were, and still are controlled by hand picked mealy mouthed unionists, lining their pockets whilst eagerly waiting on their MBEs or whatever pathetic medal passed as some sort of meritorious award.
      Step forward the utterly Anti Scottish Unionist media who were all too quick to dish the national team and its status at every turn. Little has changed.
      I’m not saying that the National team is any great inspiration with the way they play, but it is a National team.
      Quebec, Catalonia and other nations would love to have a National soccer team recognised at international level. However, often hindered is the fact Scotland having a National soccer team deflected ( by deliberate media manipulation) our push for more political autonomy.
      Argentina 78 was a classic example of thus far shall you go and no farther! That was before a ball was even kicked!
      too many risks for the union in allowing Scotland to have a successful national team.
      Step forward the Royal blue defenders of HM Britannic empire who get every type of media exposure and defence of their status whilst dodging taxation and spewing their sectarian bile to anyone in ear shot.
      Come independence, they are going to be so lost. if they are still around!

    16. Peter Brunskill says:

      We certainly don’t want Rangers or Celtic in the English leagues. Neither are really good enough anyway. We don’t want sectarian football support becoming a feature of English football either, it’s something largely avoided south of the Tweed.

    17. Capella says:

      Articles coming thick and fast now. I can’t keep up. You missed one option off the list – give the title to Rangers. That would be more in keeping with the natural order of god and man. The Blazerati would be happy.
      This is not my topic obvs.

    18. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      We’re still actually on holiday. But poll results and the odd recent event have given us stuff to write about. Will probably quieten back down next week.

    19. PacMan says:

      This unrelated article may have relevance on the current subject:

      Shuttered Restaurants, Bars, Hotels Speed Up TV Cord-Cutting Even More

      TV and streaming companies are putting a lot of money into sports. Post lock down is inevitably going to mean many sports being played behind closed doors as well as pubs being shut for a long time. Lock down will obviously mean restrictions will be eased and it means inviting friends over to watch the footie.

      That is going to mean a lot of lost revenue. There is also the scenario that people will want a communal experience of people going to one house and viewing the footie. Anybody with a bit of common sense would keep the sports TV package, getting their friends over and either get them to bring the carry-out over and/or ask for a couple of quid for the pleasure of watching the game with the boys.

      If that happens, there is going to be a lot less money coming into particularly football. Of course, the TV industry will adapt and logic dictates that charging per game may become the norm if that generates high viewing figures. Who knows maybe the novelty of the Scottish teams playing English teams may pique interest?

      A lot of speculation on my part but nobody seems to be discussing the post-lockdown world that we will face so my points are as valid as any others?

    20. james mallon Drones Over Scotland says:

      Re, Peter Brunskill
      There is not an English League,and another reminder. Rangers (Sevco) did exactly what the teams based in England did, bought with credit and lived well above their means (cheque book football).
      English based football could well be fkd soon when the books don’t balance.
      The success that took over south of the border after Celtic humped Leeds United in Europe at the Battle of Britain was based on Sky TV income.
      You even claimed Jamaicans and other fkn Empire talent as Anglos to prop up your systems (made them English).

      Bought and sold for English gold, yes the Scottish Unionist Element within the Scottish Administration killed Scottish Football.

      Look what the English have done to Scotland, you the English can only survive what you take off steal or buy off the Scots and the poorer English citizens.

      Look and compare fkn property prices from the Anglo Channel to the Scottish borders.

      The financial imbalance across the UK endorses Scots need to get rid of the Anglo element with Kings, Queens and fkn fairytales, purely subsidised with Scots money.

      We don’t need fkn royalty and snooty Anglo fkrs, we need fairness non-arsehole Anglo opinions and independence.

      Pete go and take a fk mate.

    21. PacMan says:

      Jason Smoothpiece says:12 May, 2020 at 1:51 pm

      While Celtic fans aren’t are aggressive or as anti-social as their old firm rivals, they are still are irritating. I look at them as neds on Prozac.

    22. roddy mackenzie says:

      The current situation with the leagues in Scotland is solely down the the SPFL – the SFA have nothing to do with it.

      Also the SPLF are not an independent organisation, they are just the organising body where the board members are voted in by the clubs themselves – it is the clubs who are guilty here not anyone else. It is their greed and selfishness that has caused the current problems.

      Sorry but you should really know this!

    23. Capella says:

      Will probably quieten back down next week.
      🙁

    24. Julia Gibb says:

      I always think of the small companies that went bust because Rangers didn’t pay them. Remember that “they didn’t get paid”. How can a new entity to replace a bankrupt company be allowed to pretend they are a continuation ?

      What about all those people who lost a fortune ( as regards to their meagre turnover). Yet Assets and accolades are held by the cause of that misery.

      I don’t understand it and if it was a company on the Hogh Street people wouldn’t defend them, they would condemn them. I’m happy to hear the explanation.

    25. james mallon Drones Over Scotland says:

      Re PacMan says:

      Look mate its young bairns, a minority that kick up shit at games like any walk of life, you can’t judge all supporters the same.It’s across Britain, Europe the Americas, Go to Turkey or fkn Egypt to watch football, you will get an education

      I thought the point was the Organisation, the leadership of each football system that was being commented and not an emotional meaningless point of view that compares with your targeted subject.

    26. Julia Gibb says:

      Curious on one issue. What was the actual gap between the tax evaded ( Yes Evaded) and the settlement figure. Probably less than 10% – Who had to make up that shortfall – we did.
      How did players avoid criminal charges. They are responsible for their annual tax return?
      What would happen to any of us if we evaded tax.

    27. Normski says:

      Aberdeen, Hearts, Partick Thistle, Stranraer – just some of those who backed the Rangers proposal for an investigation.

      What’s gone on in the SPFL is not all about Rangers having a grievance.

    28. Dan says:

      @Julia Gibb

      Aye, but we’re unfortunately still in the UK which treats tax evasion as the “National” sport…

      No Representation without Taxation!

      With said taxation being the subscription we make to living in a civilised society.

    29. Ian Hart says:

      PacMan @ 3.57pm

      What’s this old firm you talk of? That died years ago.

    30. John says:

      The irony in this piece for me! The very first article I ever read on this website was about Aberdeen and how losing Rangers had a positive impact on them, how their crowds improved and, in general, how more people were showing up because their teams had a bigger chance of winning something and how Scottish football was absolutely thriving without the toxicity. It’s funny how the union jack ruins everything it interacts with.

    31. twathater says:

      @ Corrado Mella 1.37pm i’m with you on fitba ( feck it ) too much aggro , corruption , and shite actors , I remember back in the day there was such a penalty as OBSTRUCTION , now it’s either like a dance or a wrestling match , jersey pulling and elbows in the face , that’s not fitba , overpaid prima donnas and agents , and don’t get me started on the strips

      Rev feck the holiday keep the posts coming

    32. Ian Brotherhood says:

      What a blessed tonic this post is.

      Heartfelt thanks for some respite, however brief it may prove to be.

      😉

    33. msean says:

      I would like to see some kind of reconstruction,it shakes things up a bit,diversifies the product. Always remember,it was Livi and Hamilton that challenged the big teams this season. The wee clubs deserve a chance to show what they can or can’t do.

    34. terence callachan says:

      Ha…the link to mike wood sportsmoney report suggests the government should bail out the Scottish teams because of covid19

      Over my dead body, not a one of them Is honest and fair , they should never ever get taxpayers money

      It is true that Rangers FC is dead and gone no longer exists we all know that

      SEVCO is a scam trumped up excuses from the SPFL and the SPL allows them to exist they wouldn’t exist anywhere else , they are bankrupt cheat the system and drag Scottish football to the depths of despair nobody likes them their fans know this their fans understand why but they still toddle along to shout and sing their awful songs, idiotic behaviour , an idiotic place to go.
      They instil this idiotic behaviour into their players too and their manager well what a joke his behaviour and comments are.

      Scottish football improved when SEVCO was in the lower leagues , they were forgotten by Scottish football fans, we were allowed to enjoy Scottish football again , SEVCO were meaningless whimpering their way around the country whilst everyone turned a blind eye to the dodgy practices and money fiddling going on behind the scenes as they climbed to the premier league.

      It’s a sham a disgrace it’s affected support for the national team too , people have lost trust in all of Scottish professional football.

      The 2019/2020 season should be ended NOW and the title awarded to whoever is at the top of the league and relegate promote those at the top and bottom NOW
      OR
      award it to nobody and relegate/promote nobody.

    35. defo says:

      A league isn’t over until the fixture list is completed. *

      As a young Boghall ne’er do well, circa Allys Argentina adventure, I was made aware of the hatred yer ordinary punter had for the blazers at Hampden.
      It never went away.
      Another establishment outfit that needs an empty oot.

      *Jambo

    36. Ruglonian says:

      I found this to be an informative read, on a subject I know very little about.

      O/T:
      (to give us non-footballing folk something to talk about)

      I saw this thread on twitter and I thought I’d see what views it provokes here – all in the name of generating an alternative discussion – cos there’s bits I totally agree with (the FM’s polished performance hasn’t wowed me into missing that she’s parrotting 99% of the WM line), and then there’s bits that warrant further investigation.

      twitter.com/Gillian_Emm/status/1260239735496245250

    37. wull says:

      Traditional remedy for scorpion bites in some parts of Africa: ‘pour salt water in your eye’. It might not sound like a good idea – not to me, at least – but I know someone who swears by it, and claims he has seen it work.
      Is that water salty enough, so that the frog might just survive? Who knows?

    38. Dan says:

      Presume Ruglonian was linking to this thread.

      https://twitter.com/TwisterFilm/status/1260212004205350912

    39. velofello says:

      Professional football players physical strength and fitness regrettably far exceeds their skill levels, and so in any match I’ve watched for a few minutes or more,players essentially get rid of the ball before they are clattered by an opponent. Boring.

      If it’s looks like a duck and swims in the same pool (Ibrox) as before, I suppose it is the same duck.

      As regards assuming an injured distaste for Rangers financial moves to survive, c’mon. We are living in the Neocon financial reality show. “Your” Prime Minister has now instructed the non-professional classes to get back to work, to protect his class’s wealth.There are much much bigger financial games being played unfairly that affect us all and should demand our attention beyond Scottish football finances.Kudos to Nicola Sturgeon for resisting the ‘back to work’ instruction without safeguards. Nicola for SPFL chair?

      A fair distribution of Scottish football’s income to the clubs would be useful to enable competition.Celtic and Rangers may have circa 50,000 fans and the income , but without the other clubs receiving fair financial distribution it will always be a two horse Celtic/Rangers race. Boring..

    40. The Scottish Premiership leads Europe in terms of fan attendance figures on a per capita basis,

      with an average of 11,436 fans turning up to Scottish top flight matches, that represents 0.21% of the population,

      Switzerland, Norway (both 0.14%) and Denmark (0.12%) are next on the list, with England’s Premier League (0.07%) 11th.

    41. Dog biscuit says:

      Football ,the sporting equivalent of a hamster wheel. Doing the same boring shit over and over.Pointless

    42. Dog biscuit says:

      Im being unfair. Of course many people enjoy the game and right now it would probably be good for fans morale to watch a game. The big Glasgow teams symptomatic of divided Scotland and so arrogant they make Andrew Windsor appear charming.

    43. Sinky says:

      Clubs shortsighted in not trailing a 14 club top division for a season or two then reassess position to solve the unfair situation whereby Hearts, Partick Thistle Falkirk etc are not condemned when it was very possible to improve on their position with 8 games to go.

      The lower top league clubs didn’t want to share their minuscule TV crumbs from Sky between 14 rather than 12. A golden opportunity was missed to restructure the farcical 11 – 1 voting system when the club formerly known as Rangers went burst but Aberdeen scuppered it. Now any progress or change can be defeated if just one of the clubs objects.

    44. James Barr says:

      As most people, it seems, give opinions without much in the way of evidence to support those opinions, I cannot say I am surprised at the continued inability of supporters of teams to distinguish between Celtic and ` Rangers`.
      Of course there are similarities –both attract massive crowds, both are located in Glasgow — but there are far more aspects where the two clubs are very, very different.
      By all means, attack either of these clubs but please don`t bracket them together. Currently, these two clubs are miles apart.

    45. Alec Lomax says:

      Sevco’s nose put out of joint. What’s not to like?

    46. @Ian B

      Lighten up man.

    47. Baxter1967 says:

      Ah how to win friends and influence people.
      Well it’s one thing to alienate the trans activists as they are less than 0.0001 per cent of the population and out with the upper echelons of the SNP , have little support. Quite another to alienate the blue half of Scotland which in fact has more independence minded folk than you might like to think. Too much pink and green in the SNP. Too much tricolour and not enough saltire on this site for me.

    48. Derek says:

      Regarding Q21a; Raith -v- Falkirk was in League 1 rather than League 2; promotion was to the – scarily competitive – Championship.

      As for the big Glasgow teams; I mourn the passing of Queen’s Park’s amateur status* and I’m a bit sad at Partick’s relegation. They’ll be fine, though.

      *I did also idly wonder as to whether the virus was some outraged deity’s reaction to this.

    49. Mist001 says:

      Football’s a ridiculous game anyway. They’re having major problems in deciding whether to end this season and award Celtic the title and of course, some people aren’t happy about that.

      In winter time, it sometimes snows and sometimes it snows quite heavily and football matches are postponed or cancelled.

      When they’re cancelled, some outfit called ‘The Pools Panel’ steps in and weigh up the options and stuff and decide which teams have a home win, no score draw, or score draw.

      When that happens, nobody bats an eyelid and the pools panels opinions are accepted.

      So, why not just get the pools panel in to bring an end to this season? It would take them an afternoon at most.

      End of story.

    50. Socrates MacSporran says:

      I fancy this football thing will blow over. Rangers International FC is a basket case – everyone knows this, but dare not say so. That club will go bust, in an even more messy way than did the original 1872 Rangers.

      The Football Establishment will again try to resurrect the club, but, this time round, hopefully the wee clubs will stick together and insist, the new Mark III,or is it Mark IV “Rangers” should be made to start playing in the lowest level of the new WEst of Scotland League, which is due to start if Scottish football ever resumes.

      I would reckon this new “ghost Rangers” could well be back in the top flight in time to try to stop Celtic winning their 20th successive league title.

      What’s not to like about that script?

    51. robbo says:

      Baxter1967 says:

      Quite another to alienate the blue half of Scotland which in fact has more independence minded folk than you might like to think. Too much pink and green in the SNP. Too much tricolour and not enough saltire on this site for me.

      ————————–

      I like the fact there’s Rangers supporters for indy.

      But try taking a saltire to Ibrox with Independence Now on it. How long b4 the knuckle draggers lynch me?

      Butchers apron,red hand of ulster, and fuck the papes is more of the flegs on show there is it not!

      Get a grip man.

    52. Patrick Roden says:

      It’s about time the fans groups got together and told their own chairmen as well as the SPFL / SFA that we have had enough of the sectarianism of the old firm and that we will decide the rules about what is and isn’t acceptable to be heard or seen at football.

      No more Irish folk songs, no matter if they are genuine songs (because if they are sung by either set of fans, they have become sectarian in their intention).

      No more UJ/Red Hand/ GSTQ. SOLDIERs ARE WE, etc etc.

      Starts with 10 point reduction, doubles, triples then ban for one season.

      Agreement reached with EUFA that before any European football competition is entered the football authorities will give a report to EUFA on whether either of these teams still operates in a sectarian manner or even winks an eye at sectarianism (for instance Rangers wearing an orange strip)

      I’d rather they were simply banned from Scotland but then again we should give them an opportunity to ‘turn over a new leaf’

    53. Gordon Keane says:

      I don’t see why they can’t just continue the league as was, the way some EU countries have been doing. Well, one at least.
      Give Celtic the Title, but start as was in September, or next year even, with the same clubs we have at present, with no relegations, etc.
      There is no way Rangers would have been able to win this League.
      But Hearts do have a point, in that they might just have avoided relegation, so I get their concern.
      But I think the extreme pettiness of Rangers has done them no favors at all.

    54. Col.Blimp IV says:

      robbo

      Back in the day I followed Celtic home and away.

      Satires weren’t exactly welcome among that crew either.

      It was there that I learned that The SNP was founded with the express purpose of getting Catholics forcibly repatriated to Ireland.

      I read in the club newspaper that the board advised against supporting Devolution for Scotland – Strange considering they seemed happy enough for the fans to shout themselves hoarse demanding freedom for Ireland.

      It seemed that Labour voter was supposed to be synonymous with Celtic Supporter.

      Which in my book at least suggests that the Huns are not completely beyond redemption.

      Just like at Parkhead or Nuremberg a load of sheep pretending to be wolves in order to stay in step with a bigoted and hate-filled vocal minority, who they imagine to omni-present.

    55. Iain More says:

      Off topic. It seems to be a free for all in Ingerland after our Great Fuhrers announcement on Sunday night. The holiday homes down the road from a mates place in Wales have filed up in less than a day and a mate in Cornwall reports that there are camper-vans and assorted motor homes filling up a beach car park near him and no sign of the Police moving them on either.

      I think Sturgeon needs to close the border and deport others carrying the Tory Plague.

      On Topic. Sevco, the story that just keeps giving and giving. Have they paid their taxes yet?

    56. Stoker says:

      Peter Brunskill wrote on 12 May, 2020 at 3:26 pm:

      “We don’t want sectarian football support becoming a feature of English football either, it’s something largely avoided south of the Tweed.”

      Yeah! Yous prefer just to run amok and smash up towns and villages whilst pissed on strong-smelling shandies. Smashing bottles, glasses and anything else at hand over the heads of each other and innocent bystanders. Not to mention the occasional knifing.

      That’s why there’s a term in existence, created by your own media i believe, ‘English Lager Louts’. Mind you, truth be told, i think they used the term “British” instead of “English” when addressing England international and English club violence abroad.

      English football violence has left its ugly mark all around the globe. Then yous made countless films about it, glorifying it etc etc. Yes, Scotland may have the sectarian disease but that’s, for the most part, reserved to just 2 clubs and even then mostly to one of them.

      On the other hand, the hooligan problem in England runs right throughout the game at both club and international level. So, to use a well kent phrase, get your own house in order before criticising others. There’s a good chap, run along now.

      Oh! Have to also say that your post is actually a load of shite, it already exists in English football and it’s growing. Listen to the singing of certain fans, see the flags and banners creeping in among the neo-nazi style ones. Oh it already exists in England alright and it’s making itself right at home.

      Irony or karma? 🙂

    57. robbo says:

      Col.Blimp IV says:
      13 May, 2020 at 12:46 am
      robbo

      Aye I know there’s some right fannies associated with celtic back then.Remember that mafioso of the Grants,White’s, McStay’s and another family Kelly! used to rule the roost there decades ago.Everything kept for them. Old Fergus Mc Cann had to sort them out,thieving bastards.

      And you had that tory John Reid, labour mob of Murphy, Kelly again. All chancers,but not as bad as Gers lot. Christ, think they lost around half their support when they started signing catholic ‘s lol-ridiculous lot.

    58. robbo says:

      All toadies the lot of them.

      The Wallace would have sorted them oot wae a big ‘baw and chain’ back in the day!

    59. Dorothy Devine says:

      Stoker , may I just mention the most beautifully behaved fans of all – Millwall.

      Terrorising many folk on the streets, forcing families to run for cover , I’m sure there is still footage around to prove the point.

      Aye , English fans are just adorable – as those on the continent will tell you too. And when police forces of France , Russia and Spain step in to sort them out , with that delicate touch so associated with police in the aforementioned countries we hear the bleating .

    60. Ottomanboi says:

      Sectarianism is currently bringing Lebanon close to internal collapse. The Sunni v Shia v Christian shtick destroyed Iraq. Ireland is still infected with the divisive contagion.
      Scotland with its sectarianisms religious, regional, linguistic and cultural is in essence little different.
      The seedlings of self destruction, awaiting water and feed from malign alien sources are in the ground.
      This growth must be eradicated along with the Unionism that provides the nutrients.

    61. Famous15 says:

      So the sting in the tail or tale is the conference “cover up” is a nonsense Tory story to politicise the pandemic.

      Who knew? Turns out,everyone!

    62. The Isolator says:

      I think people need to look beyond the “Rangers” flailing around and calling the SPFL and in particular Doncaster corrupt.Questions that require asking for me are as follows.

      Why does a chief executive of an organisation who earns close to 400K per annum require the chairman from one of 2 major beneficiaries “Celtic” to attend the TV deal negotiations?(What the fuck are we paying Doncaster for?)

      When possible League reconstruction was binned ,did Sky threaten to pull the plug on the negotiated deal based on their being only 2 “Old Firm” fixtures scheduled in any new deal ?

      Why has the season been called up until the final fixtures and not say for arguments sake the halfway point in the season?

      As we have now gone down this particular route should Heart Of Midlothian be crowned Scottish Cup winners based on most goals scored and fewest conceded thus far in the competition ?

      Will there be any guarentee to keep the lower leagues playing at all next season when there is zero prospect of football until January generating income through the Turnstiles?

      Why have Celtic not been encouraging league reconstruction as a means to improve competition in the league by having a top league of 16 full time clubs.? (They bemoan the fact that this is their nemisis in European competitions every year.Tanning clubs like Hearts 5 zip at Celtic park nearly every game is not enough apparently)

      Is the plan to ultimately kill off the professional game in Scotland to allow the “old firm” access to the big money European leagues?

      Was Lawell (Celtic Chairman ) instrumental in drawing up the 5 way agreement to save The Rangers or at least has he seen the agreement with his own eyes?(This very question being raised at the Celtic AGM last year 2019).

      As Stu rightly points out in the article above half of Scotland’s football fans are either green or blue so there really are no surprises at all ,however why all the current hullabaloo over corruption at the heart of Scottish football?We know it to be true just ask the “Old Firm ” fans of either persuasion.In the meantime Hearts ,Partick Thistle , Stranraer ,Kelty Hearts and Brora Rangers are doomed to lose out on a relatively massive scale financially while the charade of supposed Integrity within Scottish Football continues.

      Oh and finally why when relegation for Hearts ,Partick Thistle and Stranraer is assured are Brechin City being saved from automatic demotion to the Highland league ?Aye look whose chairman sits on the SFL board.

    63. Tinto Chiel says:

      @The Isolator 9.22.

      Some excellent questions but I fear the Scottish game is beyond repair. For financial reasons most SPL clubs’ boards were reluctant to send Rangers to the bottom tier. It took a concerted campaign from those clubs’ fans, threatening no purchase of season tickets, for them to do the right thing.

      I support neither club, but relegating Hearts and Partick Thistle when they are not mathematically certain to be relegated is simply unjust. Thistle even have a game in hand on the next club above them.

      Expect more chaos if Ann Budge goes down the legal route, which I feel she is entitled to do. By then most clubs will be finished because of lockdown anyway.

    64. terence callachan says:

      BBC and the newspapers lying again
      Saying scot gov should have put Scotland in lockdown sooner – 9/3/20
      But this link shows that furlough wages were not authorised by Westminster til 26/3/20

      The downside of allowing the govt in England to control Scotland’s finances
      The BBC of course ignore that fact
      Presumably they want scot govt to borrow money to pay furlough for that first two weeks ?
      OH but hang on …devolution laws say Scottish govt not permitted to borrow money

      So presumably BBC wanted scot govt to impose lockdown without furlough pay

      https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2020/05/12/fact-check-scottish-government-could-not-have-locked-down-earlier-to-save-lives/

    65. Tinto Chiel says:

      Forgot to add this as a true fan’s reaction to the lack of football, which I came upon a wee while ago:

      http://www.steelmenonline.co.uk/forums/index.php?/topic/16212-scale-model-fir-park/&_fromLogout=1

      Anything to lighten the mood.

    66. Effijy says:

      The Old Firm are a long term cancer that holds back much of Scotland.

      I am a football fan and as a kid my Dad asked to support any team other
      Than the old firm.

      He proved to be right that if you pick a team a high percentage of those you
      Mingle with will hold you afar and try to abuse you after any defeat.
      You may also be held close by a fellow supporter that you find bigoted
      and repulsive. He too will treat you badly if you don’t fully adopt his actions.

      I went to a cup semi final at Wembley with London rivals Tottenham and Chelsea.
      A sell out crowd mixed with each other leaving the ground, we queued together
      At bus and underground stations, we were in the same train carriage and although
      Spurs fans disappointed after a great display but a defeat there was never a cross
      Word or action spoken when discussing the match.

      Do our lot actually think that wanting to fight, singing sectarian songs or making
      Abusive gestures will change the days result of the next result?

      Strangely I’ve been on jury duty twice were a young man wearing an old firm shirt
      Was killed by a group of opposing fans and in another case a fan smashed a glass
      Into the eye of an opposing fan outside a pub.

      For that reason I would be pleased to see at least one of these clubs disappear.
      The only reason they probably won’t do that is their core of religious fanatic who
      Don’t do worship in the house of God and don’t follow the teachings of Jesus?

      It really is insanity that must be hammered out for good with the most dramatic punishments.
      Que for the English Parties in Scotland to stop any new legislation.

      As I hear colleagues arguing these days it seems Rangers claim to superiority is
      Having won more trophies than Celtic.

      I had a look at that and with current finances and form Celtic will claim that within 4 years.

      Celtic fans will then say they too, having formed several years later, won 100 trophies over 112 years
      Celtic have the biggest trophy,the European Cup while Rangers have not.

      It was good when both had 9 in a row but it looks like Celtic will
      Be able to say they have done it twice and look good for 10 in a row.

      How about Scots learn that from Sport the word Sportsmanship is derived.
      Support you football club for football’s sake.
      Enjoy the game and acknowledge the other team when they play well.

      These 2 teams are not superior they just have more fans and money than
      Their competitors. That is why you mostly win.

      I’m informed that Rangers are in financial pearl and
      Good we’ll go under again.

      The bigotry stops any rich Arab coming in and buying them and wealthy Rangers
      Fans know they would lose millions trying keep them going.

      Celtic must earn more than £20 million more than Rangers each year.
      They can but good quality players whenever they like while Rangers
      Have loan players and those at the end of their career.

      If both clubs wanted you do you pick the lower wage with less accomplished players
      in a club with solvency issues?

      Without these 2 clubs the public would feel safe in the city centre on match days.
      Other clubs could enjoy a beer at the matches,like Scottish Rugby and other nations.
      Domestic abuse would fall dramatically as would assaults the pressure our NHS and Courts.
      Kids wouldn’t have an anchor for bigotry.

      The sooner it ends the better.

    67. The Isolator says:

      @Tinto Chiel 9.57

      Thank you for your response.I too am fearful for the future of the game in Scotland.There appears to be no end to the vice like grip of the “Old Firm” in Scottish football.As Stu pointed out in the article Celtic won fewer trophies with Rangers outside the top division and 100% since their return.The latest spat between Rangers and the SPFL in my opinion is covering up something more sinister.

      The Champions league and the poorer relation The Europa league were withering on the vine long before Covid 19 interrupted proceedings.Talk of a European premier league with qualifying divisions below possibly regional have been mooted for a while now.Champions League is a complete misnomer anyhow.Last year Tottenham Hotsper a team which qualified for the Champions league by finishing 3rd in the zEAL came within a whisker of winning it while champions of zilch in their own country and have free called this season into obscurity.It’s about the money and not sporting integrity in any shape or from.

    68. terence callachan@10.20 thank you for the important facts on this point- will be useful ammo in discussions.

    69. Republicofscotland says:

      So the Governor Generals Office, aka The Scottish Office has dropped the stay at home message that our Scottish Government are giving out to the public. The Westminster spying office in Scotland now has the saying protect yourself and others.

      Sturgeon asked the UK government not to deploy its stay alert message in Scotland, but the Scotland Office which is meant to represent Scottish interests (I know, they do the opposite) changed the stay at home message anyway.

      I wonder what other country has a Fifth Column within it, that represents a foreign country’s interests instead of representing its own citizens interests.

    70. The Isolator says:

      @ Tinto Chiel 10.22
      Lol
      Excellent stuff.Fir Park always one of my favourite away days.He will have to put some dry ice in the away stand to replicate the often sub zero temperatures felt especially on the upper tier,a venue only surpassed by the Falkirk stadium away end.Brrrrr.

    71. Famous15 @ 9.18

      They are desperate to find mud to sling on the Scottish gov professional handling of Covid.
      We are certain that the BBC will issue an high profile apology for the inaccuracies contained in its programme or perhaps amend their statement that ‘… the Scottish government should have gone into lockdown earlier if Scotland had been an independent country but sadly this is not the case and it has to abide by English rules”
      This is unashamed politicking ( is there such a word?)

      Boris is bumbling worse than ever – images of packed public travel with no masks bring me to shudder, what will happen in the next 10 days?

      I’m not saying that anyone has the correct answer and it is a hugely difficult thing to do coming out of lockdown for every country but the public transport situation in London particularly looks horrendous.

    72. Republicofscotland says:

      Massive mistakes made by the MoD on building three nuclear structures in England that will see delays for up to six years will cost the UK taxpayer billions more than first thought.

      Scottish taxes could be spent on much better things, independence is a must.

      https://www.thenational.scot/news/18444399.spectacular-mod-mistakes-cause-enormous-waste-taxpayers-money/

    73. Tinto Chiel says:

      The Isolator: “It’s about the money and not sporting integrity in any shape or from.”

      Precisely, everything is run for the convenience of the few rich clubs. It’s hard to say when football stopped just being a sport and a nice diversion at the weekends and became a business focused on the pluocratic teams but the soul has really gone out of the game, particularly in the Sky-bloated game down south.

      The only hope for the game there is if the coronavirus situation hastens the end of the unsustainable business model the Premiership is built upon. Boris’ crash out Brexit may also make it difficult for teams to employ expensive foreign players and they may have to play local talent instead. Then the game might return more closely to its roots.

    74. Republicofscotland says:

      Frontline NHS doctors in England urging English folk to ignore Johnsons stay alert back to work messages and to listen to Sturgeons stay at home message.

      “Prague told her followers: “As a frontline NHS doctor I plead with you, please”, before sharing a snap of the alternative guidance – “Ignore Boris, Listen to Sturgeon, Save Lives”.

      https://www.thenational.scot/news/18445192.nhs-doctor-england-says-ignore-boris-listen-sturgeon/

    75. Richard Hunter says:

      It’s actually really hard to find news about Scottish football down in England. The Scottish newspapers all have paywalls now, apart from the Daily Record, whose site is virtually unusable. WoS’s Twitter used to be one of the few resources I could get information from.

    76. The Isolator says:

      @ Effijy 10.23

      Great to hear ,your dad is a wise man.I’m third generation Hearts fan and support my local team.If only bus loads of fans every weekend did the same Scottish football would be thriving.All this talk of the old firm going to England is a red herring.

      1) They don’t want them and

      2) They don’t need them.Why?

      Bournemouth AFC a team who can afford to pay a player 80k per week then loan him out to Rangers who can’t and have a ground capacity of less than 12000 and are thriving in the English top flight.

      It’s mind boggling stuff.

    77. Tinto Chiel says:

      @The Isolator: posts crossed. I’ve only been in the away stand at FP once, when it was opened in a match against Wolves, so I don’t really know what the “experience” there is like but at least the parking near the ground is easy and the pies not bad.

      Re the scale model: I think the weathering is the quite extraordinary bit and left me smiling and shaking my head. If only the guy could build us a team……

    78. Blues v Greens,

      sport,sectarianism,riots,class division,corruption,violence,

      this was the chariot racing in the ancient Roman world for 1000 year,

      most notably during the Byzantine era,

      the Blues representing the ruling classes and standing for religious orthodoxy, and the Greens being the party of the people,

      sport has been dividing people for millennia,

      and the Establishment look on and smile.

    79. K1 says:

      After Disclosure: Time for SGoRR transparency

      12.05.20

      The BBC Disclosure documentary into the Scottish Government’s response to Covid-19 raises difficult questions, which require better answers than what we have had so far by way of explanation of the early decisions which were made.

      A University of Edinburgh epidemiological simulation has found that if Scotland had lockdown two weeks earlier, from 9 March, 2,000 lives could have so far been saved in Scotland, an 80 per cent lower death rate.

      “While…there’s quite a bit of uncertainty in what the final outcome will be, all those [projections] are now substantially below what actually happened,” Professor Rowland Kao, head of the team behind the study, said.

      Deputy First Minister John Swinney has responded by saying this finding is not “particularly surprising” and that they were acting on “the scientific advice that was available at the time”. But this is a bit of a Matt Hancock-answer, I’m afraid to say. The scientific community is not and never was homogenous – there was plenty of experts at the time who were clearly offering different “scientific advice”. Senior scientists who have stated on the record that the Scottish Government made serious mistakes in the early stages now include Harry Burns, former Scottish Chief Medical Officer, Professor Dame Anne Glover, former Scottish chief scientific advisor, and Professor Devi Sridhar, on the Scottish Government’s scientific advisory group for Covid-19.

      It is important to understand that response to emergencies is largely a devolved matter. The Scottish Government Resilience Room (SGoRR) “sets the strategic direction of Scotland’s response”, according to the Scottish Government’s official guidance on emergencies. The UK Government’s guidance on emergencies states that: “At the political level, Scottish Ministers are responsible for managing the consequences of any emergency that impacts on Scotland, irrespective of its cause.” Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf confirmed last month that SGoRR is “where the Scottish planning for civil contingencies and emergencies takes place NOT UK Government Cobra meetings”. The means for the Scottish Government to make its own decisions at all stages of this crisis has always been there, something First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has herself been clear about. It was an active choice to align Scottish and UK Covid-19 strategies together in the early phase. According to public health physicians Allyson Pollock and Louisa Harding-Edgar, the decision to allow the Scottish Government to have “its strategy and the operations to be directed by Westminster” is “perhaps the most surprising aspect of the British Covid-19 crisis”.

      We know the First Minister chaired a SGoRR meeting on 29 January about Covid-19, and when the “four nations action plan” was signed-off on 2 March after Sturgeon attended a Cobra meeting, a SGoRR meeting was also held that day. What was the evidence from SGoRR which underpinned this decision to align with the UK Government strategy, which at the time was to “achieve herd immunity in the UK”, according to Sir Patrick Vallance, UK chief scientific advisor? We don’t know, because nothing from SGoRR has ever been published, not even who is present at these meetings, as apparently attendance records are not kept. Indeed, it was exactly one month after lockdown, on 23 April, that the Scottish Government published its “Framework for Decision-Making” on Covid-19. We still don’t know what the framework was up until that point.

      It is essential we know, for instance, how and why the decision was taken not to inform the public about the Nike conference Covid-10 outbreak on 26 and 27 February in Edinburgh, only uncovered now by the Disclosure documentary, which Scottish health authorities became aware of on 2 March, the day the UK strategy was agreed to and one day after the first confirmed case in Tayside was announced. How could this have not been important information for the Scottish public to know?

      The First Minister has said she wants to act with upmost transparency, so she should publish all information from SGoRR. We need answers as to the basis Scottish Government strategy was decided, and why the siren calls from many experts at the time were ignored. The Scottish Government is breaking away from the UK Government’s strategy now, the correct decision and one they deserve credit for, but we cannot forget what has already happened, and we need to know exactly why it happened. That’s the least the loved ones of those Scotland has lost too soon deserve.

      https://sourcenews.scot/after-disclosure-time-for-sgorr-transparency/

    80. Republicofscotland says:

      This is an excellent article from Colette Walker of the new indy party in the National.

      “DEVOLUTION will kill nationalism stone dead. Thus spoke George Robertson in 1995 as the plans to form a Scottish Parliament went ahead.”

      “Its is a mark of how accepting we are of Westminster rule that, even in the face of that statement, the D’Hondt system has never been challenged. Even when we were told in such bald terms that system was intended to destroy our aspirations, even when we were told that the playing field had been tilted against us, we accepted it. Those with the temerity to question it were told we had to play nice, even as Westminster gamed the referendum with the outrageous Vow and then dragged us out of the EU against our will.”

      https://www.thenational.scot/news/18444371.time-stood-westminster-win-independence/

    81. Capella says:

      FWIW – a football loving relative once told me that it all went to the dogs when TV rights came in. SKY pay the English FA £60 million for the TV rights. That’s how Bournemouth can pay £80,000 a year. Good Scottish players can play for Bournemouth and make a mint.

      Can’t remember how the Scottish FA missed that particular boat.

    82. K1 says:

      Source also published a response to the above article which addresses how we could do the post covid19 investigations in a manner that precludes ‘blaming’:

      We need a no-blame approach to a Scottish Covid-19 review

      12.05.20

      Hillary Sillitto, Fellow of the International Council on Systems Engineering, says there are lessons to learn from the civil aviation industry in how Scotland should approach a post Covid-19 review of decision-making.

      After reading Source Direct this morning, I want to make a very important point about the retrospective analysis of the decision making process in the Covid-19 outbreak.

      Such an analysis is indeed necessary if we are to learn from the experience so as to do better next time. If that is the intent, it is vital that it is carried out in a no-blame, fact-finding culture so that we can all learn from our mistakes and our successes.

      If conducted as a blame game, participants will suppress evidence and try to deflect blame. Such behaviour is not inevitable; but it is inevitable in an inquisitorial investigation that participants know or believe will lead to allocation of blame.

      The outstanding counter-example to look at for guidance is the civil aviation industry. In the aftermath of World War Two, aviation accidents were frequent, planes were unreliable, navigation aids were vestigial, pilot skills were variable, weather forecasting was less certain than now, and air travel was dangerous by any measure.

      It was decided, in an act of incredible far sightedness, that all air accident AND NEAR MISS investigations would be conducted in a spirit of blame-free fact finding. Those involved would not be prosecuted except in cases of gross professional negligence. As a result, both accidents and near misses are reported as accurately as possible, the information is made public, key lessons learned are widely and quickly disseminated AND APPLIED, and the safety record of civil aviation improved steadily and dramatically so that it is now, by most measures, the safest of all forms of passenger transport.

      In contrast, political decision making doesn’t seem to get any better over time!

      The reason why no-blame reporting works so well in aviation, and why it should become the model for the post Covid-19 review, is that these are situations that are complex, both in the colloquial and scientific senses. In a complex situation, decision makers are beset by a fog of uncertainty, partly due to an inability fully to understand all the dimensions of the complex situation, partly because things are happening quickly and not necessarily being fully measured and reported, and partly because it’s the nature of complex systems that actions have delayed effects and observed effects have multiple causes. It’s hard to judge at the time which decisions need to be taken “now”, right or wrong, based on best available evidence, and which should be delayed until evidence is clearer. Action usually has to be taken based on weak signals before the evidence is clear. Often decision-makers have to rely on intuition, prior experience, or choose between different courses of action none of which can be proved “right” or even “best” ahead of time.

      In the case of the Covid-19 epidemic in Scotland, it would be interesting to see the range of projections that could have been made in early March, based on the known data at that point. It would be interesting to understand how the evidence was building up, and what was the earliest point the evidence was sufficiently persuasive to give policy makers confidence that lock-down was a good decision. It would also be interesting to understand the financial pressures the Scottish Government was under at the time – what would have been the implications of locking down before there was agreement on funding for furloughed workers, and how much did this issue affect the decision making? And lots of others I won’t attempt to enumerate.

      After a career working with systems of various complexity, my rule of thumb is that in a complex situation, the evidence is seldom clear enough to provide the certainty most decision makers seek before the situation has become too critical for a rational response!

      Whatever the next crisis is, it won’t be same as this one. But the fundamental issues are always the same – decision making in complex situations with incomplete knowledge. The only way to become better at this is practice, preferably in situations where lives are not at stake, so that when lives are at stake people make good-enough decisions at the right time.

      So yes, we absolutely need the after-action analysis. It should be conducted through a spirit of learning for the future so we can do better next time, with no attempt to allocate blame to people who were trying to do their best in difficult circumstances. And it should become the basis of scenario planning exercises that should be conducted regularly and rigorously, involving all of the Scottish Government’s resilience actors – and bringing in the opposition politicians as well, so they understand the pressures the decision makers are under, are less likely to offer unhelpful criticism and indulge in point-scoring at the wrong time, and are better able to handle the situation if and when they find themselves in power.

      https://sourcenews.scot/we-need-a-no-blame-approach-to-a-scottish-covid-19-review/

    83. Republicofscotland says:

      Fir those of you who cannot acess the Walker article another snippet.

      “It is natural to be suspicious of anything new, particularly when it involves politics. The proof of the pudding is in the eating and we understand that we are going to be under intense scrutiny. Indeed the deluge of DMs and enquiries that we have had to field in the past 24 hours is testimony to that. Nonetheless, Wishart’s article is illustrative in how risk-averse and hidebound the SNP have become. The first point that he makes is that an alternative party would have to have a more aggressive approach to Westminster and independence. Is that a bad thing? What exactly is the approach that the SNP is using just now actually achieving? Does anyone in the independence movement still believe that we are going to get a Section 30 order from Westminster? Why are we still asking their permission?”

      “Wishart points to previous examples of alternative indy parties falling flat and the danger that they might not succeed, but take vital votes away from indy candidates. Interestingly, he points to the Greens as a possible option for votes on the list. All of this is valid comment, but it ignores the reason that these parties are unable to succeed and why the Greens have never broken out of single figures for MSPs. Quite simply, it is because the SNP have at each election instructed their voters to vote SNP one and two and their voters have taken them at their word. More than a million votes that might have gone to an indy candidate have instead been consigned to the dustbin. That is why the dregs of dying Unionism still manage to sit on the benches of Holyrood.”

    84. INDEPENDENT says:

      A completely new look at reconstruction.
      The fans who go to the stadiums are bored stiff watching the same old same old.

      Re-alignment of the leagues whilst ensuring SKY / BT Sports get their 4 Glasgow Rangers and Glasgow Celtic league games. (Unless by some miracle they don’t make the top 6.)

      16 teams in the new Premiership. All play each other twice, ( Home and Away).

      Top 6 split and play each other again Home and Away giving 40 matches.

      The lower 10 teams play each other another once giving them 39 matches.
      (Some teams may complain about more away games but that happens after the split already.)

      To make up the 16 team premiership Dundee Utd, Inverness C. T., Dundee and Ayr Utd are promoted.
      NO RELEGATION for Hearts who thus maintain their position in the Premiership.

      The Championship stays a 10 team league with NO RELEGATION for Partick Thistle who maintain their Championship status, with Raith Rovers, Falkirk, Airdrie and Montrose all promoted from League 1.

      NO RELEGATION for Stranraer who maintain their League 1 status.

      League 2 promotes Cove Rangers, Edinburgh City, Elgin City and Cowdenbeath to keep the 10 team League 1.

      NO RELEGATION for Brechin City who maintain their League 2 status.

      League 2 then accepts the top 2 from the Lowland League Kelty Hearts ( Champions) with Bonnyrig Rose ( Runners-Up ) and, also the top 2 from the Highland League
      Brora Rangers ( Champions ). and either Inverurie Loco or Fraserburgh ???? (Runners Up)

      Inverurie are currently second but Fraserburgh have 5 games in hand!!
      Hence a possible fly in the ointment there.

      I am sure if you can get the other clubs to agree thus far, that last problem could be sorted by the Highland Laegue.

      At the end of the season Bottom 2 in Premiership automatically relegated with Top 2 promoted from the Championship. ( Possibly 3rd bottom in play off with 3rd top team, that can be resolved in the small print.)

      The Championship and Leagues 1 and 2 keep their play – offs as at present.

      I hope that all made sense.

      This set up gives more derbies which would make up cash flow for teams. ie In the Premier League the Greater Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee clubs, Killie / Ayr, St Johnstone, Aberdeen possibly the only club who geographically have to travel for any sort of derby fixtures.( On past form Aberdeen would expect to get the extra 2 x Old Firm Matches.)
      The TV money should be portioned so as to not damage any of the Premier clubs not in the top 6, missing out on the possibility of maybe 1 extra old firm visit before the split as it currently stands.

      I wonder if the GREEDY BA***RDS on the SPFL Board will actually think about the chance they have to completely overhaul the leagues.
      I remember when we had the 18 team Divisions. Real fans, most of whom have season tickets still went to see the end of season games where clubs could let younger players flourish without the fear factor. Scottish football provided its best players from this set up at both national and international level. Hmmmm!

      Worth a thought.

      Stay Home and IGNORE BOJO The Clown!

    85. susan says:

      Doesn’t Colette Walker mention that the Greens are even more woman-phobic than the SNP and therefore useless ?

    86. Pete Barton says:

      Re John Robertson’s piece, as Terence pointed to above…

      So not one journalist including the TV mob, BBC et al researched this before yesterday’s attack session.
      And why, pray the SG didn’t reveal it either?
      Good journalism from the Prof.

    87. Sensibledave says:

      Capella

      The tv rights were £4.5 Billion for 3 years!!

    88. Sensibledave says:

      Scott 11.34

      As An outsider, I would suggest that there is a flaw in your assessment if you believe 50% of the population are dismissed for being “the ruling classes”.

    89. jfngw says:

      @Pete Barton

      Couple of reasons I can see, the media will jump on them if they blame WM (even if it is true) as avoiding responsibility. Also it makes them look weak, governments like to project the aura of being in control.

    90. Harry mcaye says:

      The Isolator – Finishing bottom of League Two does not mean instant relegation. Under normal circumstances, if Brechin did indeed finish bottom, they would await the winner of the Highland/Lowland play off. I dare say they would likely go down, used to losing most weeks against a strong side used to winning but nevertheless they would have two games to save themselves.

      I can’t help feel glad for Brechin City. They showed ambition in getting to the Championship but since then it’s been a nightmare for them. It would be very harsh for them to lose their league status after one bad season at the bottom tier.

    91. Famous15 says:

      Listening to the Greens in the Scottish Parliament makes me think the LibDems are not the only dafties.

      I will never ever vote Green again. Bring on an independence list party that I can vote for.

      First vote SNP but list vote to a credible independence party!

    92. The Isolator says:

      Harry mcaye @ 12.47

      I know finishing bottom of league 2 means possible safety through the play off route but the League has been called and finishing bottom had no consequences for them as a club,however they by the very nature of this call also had no appetite for reconstruction but you knew that I’m sure.

      The fact their chairman sits on the SFL board gave him unlimited access to lobbying clubs.Dundee FC however are the real enigma in all of this ,what happened to their vote and why is Neil Doncaster determined to expel (you cannot be relegated under their own rules unless all fixtures are completed )Hearts from the SPFL to the SFL when there is no guarantee that the SFL can see the Covid crises through in it’s current form if at all.

    93. And spouse says:

      Been a blue nose for 60 years. Son of a catholic. Never sang the sash. Enjoyed all those years including the Smith years. Religion in football is way outdated now.
      But I do agree with you Stu about when Rangers (they’ll always be that to me) were relegated. Why oh why didn’t the other 10 teams in the spl take the opportunity to get a grip of Scottish football? They didn’t because it’s always about money under the present climate, it’s never about the good of the game. Teams were built around cities and home grown kids ( Lisbon Lions!!!!) No longer, it’s about cash paid for by the poor now. So business rise and fall daily, why should football be different.
      Locality meant something, now they are just business with petty squabbles. Maybe the Spfl should be run by former managers and players! Not board members representing clubs! I could see that happening if we actually cared about the game and about Scotland. Our society now prefers to bicker and argue.
      You’re a terrible man Stu with some black n white arguments. Never change! It’s your opinion and i may not always agree with it. But it makes me question!

    94. Capella says:

      The tv rights were £4.5 Billion for 3 years!!

      As I said – it’s not my topic. Maybe the £60 m was for Bournemouth alone?

    95. The Isolator says:

      No wonder Tom English is reviled on both sides of the divide.
      I read this with a wry smile but he absolutely nails the state we are in.

      https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/52646285

    96. “The practical reason why it’s a bad idea to cave in to bullies – as well as the morality of doing so – is that they see it as weakness and don’t respect you for it, and as such they won’t show you any gratitude should you need their support in future.”

      When you know the bully can kill you if you don’t obey it’s really tough. But with that kind of bully if you don’t obey you can become his slave.
      I never gave in and sometimes I had to run.



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