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Wings Over Scotland

Unfortunate juxtaposition

Posted on July 29, 2013 by

From a heavily-spun Huffington Post piece on Scotland’s relationship with the monarchy, in which Dennis Canavan expressing a personal opinion when asked a question becomes an “outburst”. You know the sort of thing. (The story was also reported in the Telegraph as “Yes camp in disarray”, before a hasty rewrite.)


It’s an interesting definition of “overwhelming majority”, we’ll grant you. But it might explain why the No campaign apparently thinks it has the referendum won already.

Meanwhile, the Daily Record seems confused about its own related poll:


47% is “more than half” now? Did someone change the rules of arithmetic when we were asleep or something? It’s only Monday morning and we’re confused already.

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    72 to “Unfortunate juxtaposition”

    1. Atypical_Scot says:

      The reasons for keeping the monarchy are;
      They live in big houses for free?

    2. The Man in the Jar says:

      So the Daily Record can’t even do simple maths.
      I for one wouldn’t like to be the Records junior employee who goes out for the rolls at tea break. Can you imagine divying up the change?

    3. CameronB says:

      This is a matte for after we have our independence.

    4. Iain says:

      Yep, the Telegraph was at it as well over yesterday’s stooshie with Dennis Canavan’s Royal comments. They stated:

      ‘However, opinion polls suggest that the population of Scotland, as in the rest of the UK, support a monarchy over an elected head of state by a margin of four to one.’

      In fact the last Comres had just under 3 to 1 for their Scottish sub sample regarding that question. It’s one of the great foundation stones of the Unionist ‘nothing to worry about’ mindset that the Scottish electorate is essentially identical in its views and opinions to those of the greater UK. So desperate are they to believe this, they dispense with basic arithmetic.

    5. Oneironaut says:

      It’s too much for a Monday morning when people start using all these big words like juxa… juxtp… juax… what he said!
      It’s also possible that the BT camp are operating in a completely different reality than the rest of us…  That would explain a lot actually!

    6. Clarinda says:

      It must be the ‘smaller half’ that the DR refers to – leaving the ‘larger half’ with the remarkable status of being the majority and minority at the same time.  Einstein would be pleased.

    7. Luigi says:

      Oh dear!  It seems the opinion poll results were not quite what they expected.  It would seem sensible for one to actually read the poll results before spouting off about “overwhelming majorities”, but then again, BT have form in this area.

    8. DMyers says:

      I thought I was feeling a bit confused this morning after a weekend on the sauce, but it seems there are others in a worse state…

    9. It’s like everything else in the UK Royals,Trident,wars,taxes,BBC all imposed upon Scot Without consultation.We are told to like it or lump it

    10. Luigi says:

      I heard on the radio recently that over 70% of the population support the monarchy, and it’s been that way for years.  Sound familiar?

    11. Mosstrooper says:

      This manufactured “row” only serves to illustrate my point on another post. Make no indications of personal opinions when discussing Independence to the MSM.
      Ir they make things up we can rebut their argument, if we make a statement of personal opinion they can twist it, inflate it or exaggerate where we are then in the position of seeming to issue a rebuttal or our own statement.
      To paraphrase an ww2 poster, “careless talk costs votes”

    12. Doug Daniel says:

      Maybe an extra 4% want us to have a different monarch with independence? After all, it’s always amusing when you see people saying we should skip Charles and move straight onto William, which would be, erm, choosing your head of state – which is supposed to be what these people oppose.

    13. Robert says:

      Iain says:
      29 July, 2013 at 10:56 am
      Yep, the Telegraph was at it as well over yesterday’s stooshie with Dennis Canavan’s Royal comments. 
      I dipped my toe in the water there yesterday for a laugh.
      My god, what a pit of cretins wallowing in their own prejudices that is!
      I thought that the Hootsmon’s forum was bad but that lot take the biscuit.
      Even the ones who patently think they are quite smart are mind numbingly stupid and inarticulate.
      It is depressing to know that such a level of barely concealed racism and cretinous xenophobia is allowed such a public forum.

    14. seoc says:

      There seems to be a difficulty in this type of question for  many Unionists in that when asked for a specific factual answer, they respond with ‘I believe….’ this or that.
      All very interesting no doubt, but no marks for relevance.

    15. Luigi says:

      Royalist YES voters, and Royalist NO voters are highly unlikely to change their intentions during the next year, as are Republican YES voters.  Soft Republican NO voters, on the other hand?  Will they really pass up on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shake things up, plant one in the eye of the ancient feudal system they hate so much, and pull the red carpet from beneath our superior noses?  Mmmmmmm!

    16. Erchie says:

      A monarchy is all very well, but we should decry this German House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha in favour of the true descendants of the line of the Stuarts, Franz, Duke of Bavaria!,_Duke_of_Bavaria
      Ah!. Umm!
      Er. Princess Anne for Second President of Scotland?

    17. Vronsky says:

      In the interests of mathematical rigour, I should point out that 47 is greater than 50 for large values of 47.

    18. Doug Daniel says:

      Mosstrooper – the flipside of the “careless talk” thing is that since they’re going to make stuff up anyway, folk might as well just speak their mind. One of the strengths of the independence movement is the wide range of voices within it – this is clear from the fact BetterTogether’s entire campaign is based on trying to say that “Yes = SNP/Salmond”. If we start telling people that they have to stick to the official line at all times, then not only are they less likely to want to be involved, but we’re also giving BetterTogether exactly what they want.
      As long as people are making it clear that they’re talking about post-independence, then I think differing opinions do more good than harm. The SNP policy is to retain the monarchy, which placates monarchists, but then you have people like Dennis, Patrick Harvie and Colin Fox involved as well who can makes noises to placate folk with republican sentiments. Win-win as far as I’m concerned.

    19. Atypical_Scot says:

      The Telegraph comments section is comedy gold. 

    20. Atypical_Scot says:

      OOH! Blair tweet to Wings! I’ll let Rev relay it – 

    21. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      The “Quick Poll” they are talking about is a Huffington Post online one, right? On their article page right now?
      Is that it?
      Hardly worth getting out of bed for.

    22. Dan Huil says:

      An independent Scotland will probably keep the current monarch as head of state.After she dies the people of Scotland,in a referendum,will tell Charles and the rest of them to get lost.

    23. HeatherMcLean says:

      “Mosstrooper says:
      29 July, 2013 at 11:07 am

      This manufactured “row” only serves to illustrate my point on another post. Make no indications of personal opinions when discussing Independence to the MSM.
      Ir they make things up we can rebut their argument, if we make a statement of personal opinion they can twist it, inflate it or exaggerate where we are then in the position of seeming to issue a rebuttal or our own statement.
      To paraphrase an ww2 poster, “careless talk costs votes” ”
      I’d be inclined to agree with you on this, as the media love nothing better than to twist what we say and sow seeds of dissent among us, but the problem is Dennis Canavan is a straight talking honest person who tells it like it is! It’s easy for some politicians to lie through their teeth and say one thing when they mean another or just to straight out lie, but Dennis Canavan is a different kettle of fish, he shoots straight from the hip and is open and honest about what he believes in. Unfortunately this makes him fair game for the media who distort and twist things at the best of times. What Dennis said was his own personal opinion but has now been used against the YES campaign.
      I think we all have to be careful when expressing our own personal opinions during this campaign, the ultimate goal is to achieve independence, the time for our personal opinions and visions for the future is afterwards when we will have ample opportunity to express our hopes in the lead up to the 2016 elections. As someone ealier posted on here, this is a matter for discussion after the referendum. Till then I think we should be very guarded in what we say!


    24. velofello says:

      A Labour MP,on Call Kaye this morning -Bill Robrtson, N Lanarks? – opinioned that a benefit of the monarchy is the number of visitors they bring to London! Since that is his place of work I suppose his view is understandable, and doubtless his North Lanarks constituents share that view.

    25. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      The RT link doesn’t load for me and from within the RT website is also doesn’t load either?

    26. Archie [not Erchie] says:

      @ BtP – Yes the same with the link from here and RT.Com Sophies Show – However I see the Sophie Show schedule is for 2.30pm today and later on, on the RT TV Channel.

    27. Albalha says:

      Didn’t hear it, have stopped listening ….could it be John Robertson MP, Glasgow North West, the only Robertson that springs to mind.

    28. dmw42 says:

      O/T and my apologies; the Evening Times is reporting that “From the largest social landlord in the country to small associations with a few hundred properties the message is the same: More people are in arrears since the welfare reforms took effect on April 1…Housing bosses also fear escalating arrears will put a strain on their finances and hit the work they do”.
      ‘Bedroom Tax’ leads to rise in Glasgow rent arrears
      I look forward to the BBC inScotland reporting on this with the same enthusiasm.

    29. Albalha says:

      If it is that MP, just looked him up, his constituency office is in Drumchapel, mmm, monarchy supporting indeed.

    30. Atypical_Scot says:

      What will happen to crown estates in a non monarchic Scotland?

    31. Jiggsbro says:

      I’m in favour of the monarchy, because it could be to my benefit. If the right 42 million people were to die tomorrow, I could be King. It would be madness to give all that up.

    32. Macart says:

      RE: Sophie link
      Worked peachy for me. Cracking interview and worth redistributing.

    33. Robert Kerr says:

      Try this link and click “view full story” 
      Very strange but he there is no conspiracy

    34. mato21 says:

      South Lanarkshire council (Labour) loses F.O.I. case at a cost of approx. £200:000 I do hope that their constituents are happy with their judgement having lost all the way down the track they continued on to the supreme court  and lost there too
      PS Robertson this morning doesn’t know what Independence means This was picked up by a number of listeners but Kaye claimed not to know who had made this remark She’s usually so on the ball

    35. Vronsky says:

      I’ve always been:

      (a) republican
      (b) grudgingly bowing to the SNP argument that it’s a conversation for another day

      So I’m having wee girly giggles at seeing it becoming an issue right now.  Thoughts of the English monarchy after independence bring to mind phrases involving ‘dykes’ and ‘snaw aff’. 

      Let’s light the fuses on some fearbombs of our own.  ‘Of course, you’re welcome here, Ma’am, everyone loves you.  Please step this way – have you seen our cellars?’

    36. Yesitis says:

      What will happen to crown estates in a non monarchic Scotland?
      Union Jock theme parks  🙂

    37. Murray McCallum says:

      I personally think a lot of people in the existing UK, let alone an independent Scotland, would question support for the monarchy once the rule of Liz is over.
      This is a divisive and easily manipulated issue at the moment.  Best left to a later date.

    38. HandandShrimp says:

      The Huff’s on line poll hardly complements the manufactured angst of the quotes in the story.
      Sweet 🙂

    39. Macart says:

      Perhaps they should be directed to the RT interview. There’s a pretty fair piece in it where the FM outlines just what he envisions as independence. Seemed pretty straight forward. Give us control of our politics, resources, taxation, spend and representation. Everyone has their own idea of independence of course, but as a starter for ten even the opposition could understand that’s the basics.
      The amount of times you run across ‘what does independence mean?’ Well for the hard of thinking at PQ the example is amply linked to in this thread.

    40. Angus McLellan says:

      @Atypical_Scot: It would belong to the state, just like it does in Ireland. But even in a monarchical Scotland the Crown Estate could be much reduced. There’s a report from 2006 on Andy Wightman’s website – – is worth a look.

    41. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      I dipped my toe in the water there yesterday for a laugh.”


    42. Jamie Arriere says:

      The only problem I have with Dennis Canavan sounding off his own opinions, is that he is increasingly appearing on news reports with the title “Chairman, Yes Scotland”. Therefore he is being seen as a senior voice of the Independence campaign and in fact he could be seen as a leader, and that his opinion prevails. I agree with some of his opinions, but not all.
      I just wish as chairman he would reflect the many different visions for an independent Scotland, concentrate on the big picture and and preferably deflect policy manifesto questions off to the political party leaders to answer themselves. Blair Jenkins does this far better than him. 

    43. pmcrek says:

      That support for the monarchy is now a minority position in Scotland must really stick in their craw as it goes completely against the narrative the press have been trying to create for decades. The press are losing their power and the more they push their discredited agenda instead of news, the quicker they will fail.

    44. velofello says:

      I was strongly anti-royal until Tony Blair came along and I realised that in an USA style republic Cherie Blair would have been First Lady! A rethink needed.
      I can accept that a country needs someone to play Mine Host and shake hands, and mustn’t embarrass the country by their behaviour, and I still think a royal bloodline is silly.
      Suitable candidates who have served Scotland well in their working life -politics excluded,would suit me.Call it a Super knighthood if you like.
      @ Caesar!lha – probably it is he. I multi-task and toe-dip Call Kaye so a bit short on detail.Mostly her programme is rubbish for me and her speech phrasing irks.

    45. Malcolm says:

      The debate about the monarch focuses on ‘what do they do?’ and ‘are they worth it?’ questions.  These, I believe are wrong questions to ask.  For me it’s a needs based issue.  Do we need a Royal Family or don’t we.  Many get a lot out of monarch, they love it.  Is this because they get a sense of prestige, a sense of prestige they otherwise wouldn’t have.    So, does Scotland actually need a Queen?

    46. Jiggsbro says:

      I was strongly anti-royal until Tony Blair came along and I realised that in an USA style republic Cherie Blair would have been First Lady!
      I was strongly pro-monarchy until Prince Charles came along and the benefit of being able to choose your head of state became apparent.

    47. Robert says:

      Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
      29 July, 2013 at 12:33 pm

      “I dipped my toe in the water there yesterday for a laugh.”
      Forgive me being obtuse.
      Don’t get it.

    48. Stuart Black says:

      @Robert: In case you’re wondering about the cite tags thing, the Rev gets upset when anyone copies a whole post and pastes it into another comment, c/w the date and time thing, it plays hell with his formatting or something.
      You only started posting here the other day, so wouldn’t have known, anyway, ye ken noo!

    49. Stuart Black says:

      Ooh, spooky…

    50. Robert says:

      Ah…I see…point taken.
      I thought I was missing some insider techno joke!

    51. Stuart Black says:

      Welcome. You’re not the only one on this thread! 😉

    52. Tris says:

      In a Blether Together world where a half empty hall becomes a packed audience there is no reason why 47% would not be more than half. Indeed it may even become more than three quarters.
      Who knows with Ukok?

    53. Sneddon says:

      Do we really need a head of state whether monarchy or otherwise?  As far as I am concerned we’ve an elected govt, that’s all we need, or am I missing something?
      We live in a democracy (of sorts) Dennis can give his opinion and as stated above it doesn’t matter what we say it’ll get twisted anyway  so I’ll say what I want (within the bounds of good taste naturally).  Second guessing the MSM reaction only leads to madness and the type of weasel words you expect from mainstream parties.

    54. The Man in the Jar says:

      I am not that bothered either way regarding the monarchy but please please let us never under any circumstances have a president. All that would be is another snout in the trough. At a push I would vote to retain the monarchy just to prevent us having a president. Can anyone name a single living president that is not having his/her stings pulled by big business or other outside influences?

    55. Atypical_Scot says:

      I just remember a Monarchy humour great from Alas Smith and Jones instant coffee table book;
      The birth of alternative comedy – Jester – “OI! King! Fuck off!
      The death of alternative comedy – Axe man goes – Kerrchuunnk!
      R.I.P Mel Smith.

    56. The Rough Bounds says:

      @mosstrooper, HethercMclean and others.
      I agree with you completely.
      I wrote on another post that I thought there might be inherent dangers in using Dennis Canavan in a head to head debate with someone from the No campaign.
      His blurting out, even if it were a personal attitude, about the likelihood of a referendum on the monarchy proves that in many ways I was correct. He has a slack tongue.
      Dennis, like most leftwingers, just can’t seem to keep their traps shut. His views and those of others, on whether or not Scotland ought to recognise the monarchy are at the moment completely irrelevant.
      The most important thing at the moment is to concentrate all of our energies on achieving a Yes vote in the independence referendum. Anything else is just chaff and it is just thrown back in our faces by the unionists.
      I think it is a Buddhist saying that, before you speak, you must ask yourself this:
      1. Is it necessary?
      2. Is it true?
      3. Is it kind?
      Guys in Dennis’s position ought to keep this advice on a piece of paper in their wallet and make regular reference to it.

    57. Xander says:

      @Tris – Who would have suspected that the Record could count in hexadecimal. 🙂

    58. The Man in the Jar says:

      Oops! Just noticed spelling error in my last comment. It should read his/her strings pulled. Not his/her stings pulled! Which leads me on to – The stings the thing!
      Bloody wasps geting everywhere this morning!

    59. Shinty says:

      The Man in the Jar
      I’m absolutely with you there – I am neither here nor there on the monarchy, but a president – ABSOLUTELY NOT.

    60. Tony Little says:

      My kids were brought up with the (unlikely in the extreme) scenario that if the queen ever called for tea, they had to refer to her as Mrs. Winsdor, nee Saxe-Coberg,  Never had the opportunity to live out that particular fantasy, but you get the picture. 
      This is the 21st Century FFS!  At the very least we should have a monarchy on the Dutch lines.  (Did you know that Queen Beatrix was often to be seen on a bicycle in Amsterdam – now THAT’S a constitutional monarch!)

    61. The Man in the Jar says:

      @Tony Little
      I can vouch for the Queen Beatrix bicycle thing. She was pointed out to me on her bike during one of my all too infrequent visits to Amsterdam. I agree that I could live with that kind of monarchy without a problem.

    62. callum says:

      am I the only YES voter who doesn’t mind the monarchy.  Scotland has had a monarchy for ages – most of us are probably related to the old kings and queens of Scotland.   Was Queen Elizabeth ever crowned Queen of Scots?  or did they forget that bit?

    63. The Man from Del Monte says:

      I never thought I would see the day that Peter Hitchens (indirectly) made the case for Scottish independence (please excuse the source; it was a link I saw – honest!):

    64. dmw42 says:

      In 1894 Keir Hardie, leader of the Independent Labour Party, wrote:
      the life of one Welsh miner is of greater commercial and moral value to the British nation than the whole Royal crowd put together, from the Royal Great-Grand- Mama to this puling Royal Great-Grandchild.”
      Just saying…

    65. Robert Kerr says:

      My understanding is that the present queen was never crowned in Scotland as anything. She was shown the “Honours of Scotland” but forbidden to touch them else the Nats would be encouraged.
      The last time the “Honours of Scotland” were used for a coronation was to crown Charles II at Scone in 1651.
      I am sure she shall be invited to attend a coronation as Elizabeth, Queen of Scots, after 2014.
      Speed the day 

    66. The Man in the Jar says:

      Could anyone live with a reinstated but ancient title of “Guardian of Scotland” as head of state?
      Previous incumbents include.
      Robert Wishart, Bishop of Glasgow (1290-1292)
      Sir Andrew Moray (1297)
      Sir William Wallace (1297-1298)
      Robert the Bruce Earl of Carric (1298-1300)
      This title was often shared between two or more people.
      I like the title, it can be used if the “Guardian” forgets what they are there for then the clue is in the job title.

    67. Juteman says:

      Why do folk feel the need for a separate ‘head of state’?
      We have a First Minister.

    68. CameronB says:

      Would it not be possible to bind the post of Guardian of Scotland, to the ‘bond and social contract’ provided by our written constitution? Wouldn’t it be necessary for the two to be liked in this way?

    69. molly says:

      No problem with the Royal Family per se ,in fact Princess Anne does a lot of good work in this area .However, if (and I hope we do ) an Independent Scotland opts to have a written Constitution for the benefit of the people, how can a grace and favour title or land or property be part of that ?
      The fact 26 Bishops of the C of E sit in the Lords is like some kind of scene from the ‘Tudors’. Why ? At present ,they cannot even accept women bishops so on whose behalf are they speaking,far less the likes of the great chieftain yurcurtainsareoanfire.
      I thought the whole Monarchy thing was downplayed on Call Kaye this morning but it is precisely these establishments people wanting Independence are up against and they will not give it up easily, its worked for Centuries for them, so why should they ?
      I think it was Alan Grogan who said something like ,he’s not just voting for Independence,he’s voting for change, well I agree with Alan.

    70. Morag says:

      As far as I am concerned, Scotland lost her monarchy the day Jamie the Saxt crossed the border and abandoned his country. Scotland never recovered from that, it was the ultimate betrayal. Why should we have anything to do with his descendants?

    71. Robert Kerr says:

      Further to my post at 5.20 regarding the Queen and the Honours of Scotland. My memory served me well.
      Fully covered by BBC Caesar! in their documentary “Diomhair” or “secrets”.
      It is on Youtube in parts. see part 3, 4 minutes in.
      Hail Caesar!

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