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Unscheduled day off

Posted on October 10, 2015 by

Because this isn’t the fairer, better, equal Scotland we’re fighting for.

quotas

See you tomorrow, readers.

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    269 to “Unscheduled day off”

    1. Alexander McKenzie says:

      Uh oh! I remember when this subject last came up!

    2. Brian says:

      At which point do they put guns at women’s heads and DEMAND they are politicians OR ELSE?

    3. ronnie anderson says:

      I think a Dugdale / Lamont / Baillie say plenty on woman only lists.

      Ability Ability Ability

      NOT

      Incompetence Incompetence Incompetence.

      & a lot of men should,nt be in politics either,some of both sexes promoted beyond their Abilities.

    4. Dan Huil says:

      Deep down the Guardian also thinks NS is the most dangerous woman in the so-called united kingdom. [Good luck to Wales today, btw]

    5. HandandShrimp says:

      I personally don’t have an issue with parties having a target to try and secure a more even gender balance.

      Like Nicola I look forward to a day when we don’t even have to think about such things and it happens naturally. 100 years on from the suffragettes our society has come a hell of a long way. However, that doesn’t mean that we can’t improve on where we are.

      Quotas are a bit crude and it would foolish to exclude an outstanding male candidate just to meet a absolute and rigid quota but I support the principle of targets and measures to improve opportunities and aspirations.

    6. Betty Boop says:

      It’s not “the rough and tumble” that puts women off, but, for a great many who are not independently wealthy, balancing those parts of life which are generally,often necessarily, their responsibility would put off many from entering politics.

      Quotas – well, few like them. Perhaps they would be more acceptable if fair quota policy wasn’t misrepresented or deliberately misunderstood. Merit should always be the winner.

    7. kailyard rules says:

      Betty Boop…Your first sentence applies equally to men.

    8. Onwards says:

      I think the best way to do candidate selections might be by putting a ‘leadership recommended’ star next to any favoured candidates, female or not. Local branch members can still vote whatever way they like.

      Not really keen on all-female lists just to make up the numbers.
      But we do need to accept that a party with a low number of female politicians might get punished by the electorate, of which women are a slight majority now.

    9. This idea of women only shortlists is something I am not in favour of as a means to achieving gender equality.

      I have always believed in selecting the best person whether it be a man or woman.

    10. Martin says:

      And this is why I’m not renewing my membership. I don’t like discrimination in employment.

    11. Justin Kenrick says:

      Nicola’s logic makes complete sense to me.

      Other people’s contrary views can often also make sense

      Can we show a bit of respect both ways?

      Thanks! “People say to me, ‘I don’t want quotas, I don’t want all women shortlists because I believe people should get on on merit’. I absolutely 100 per cent believe in that, I think people should get on on merit.

      “The problem is that’s not what happens very often just now. If we had a system that was purely based on merit, we’d have gender balance because women are 52 per cent of the population, and unless you think that women are somehow less capable, then if we had a merit-based system we wouldn’t have these problems of under-representation of women.

      “I do think we need to look at system-wide approaches to deal with that so we can one day get to a position where all of these decisions are entirely based on merit.”

    12. Tony Little says:

      This topic comes up frequently. Quotas are not a long term solution to anything in any walk of life, politics included. There MAY be a short term need to balance things while other factors are developing that makes quotas unnecessary.

      But on their own they only create resentment, and potentially lead to less qualified people getting a position ahead of a more appropriate (in this case) man.

      There are no short cuts to balancing the opportunity or interest among women, disabled, ethnic minorities etc. (those groups frequently sited for this kind of additional support).

      The political system needs to be able to welcome talented people from ALL groups in our society by enabling anyone with talent to rise to the top. Clearly it doesn’t (especially true for Westminster).

      I am sympathetic to all women short-lists for a strictly limited (even ‘one-off’) election, but NOT as a continuous practice, but ONLY if other systems are out in place to enable anyone to have the same opportunity and access. Surely f we want better politics and better decision-making, then talent, or merit, MUST be the final arbiter?

    13. Auld Rock says:

      In our SNP Branch we have over the years encouraged capable men and women to put themselves forward and to date we have a broadly gender balanced Branch Committee but our greatest difficuly is getting our large number of younger members male and female to get involved. Youngsters are all up for a cause like ‘The Referendum’ but getting them interested in the mundane day-to-day Branch business is another matter. On a personal level I have always believed and supported the ‘Best Person’ for the job but I recogise that women must be given more help with things like childcare, family friendly working hours etc.

      Auld Rock

    14. Martin says:

      I saw an orchestral audition once where all the violinists were behind a curtain and not allowed to speak. The bosses then picked purely based on playing. It’s an odd concept, but infinitely fairer…

    15. Croompenstein says:

      I think this explains it all..

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LS37SNYjg8w

      Stars Jackie Baillie at 1:35… 🙂

    16. Flower of Scotland says:

      If Stu,s having the day off he won’t mind be going o/t so early.

      Watching RT and Max Keiser and couldn’t believe, that he dragged Michele Thomson into the programme. He was talking to Ian Fraser, who wrote “shredded”, and asked about this “scandal” whereupon Fraser told him she was flipping house sales. No come back whatsoever just a great big smear Max!

      Oh well, I’m probably stupid to think that RT wasn’t like the rest of the British media.

      I’m trying to find out how to complain to RT and Max Keiser in particular, but not having much success. Might do it through Facebook.

    17. Me Bungo Pony says:

      I know this is an extremely contentious subject but I really don’t believe in quotas like this. I could understand it if women were putting themselves forward in equal numbers to men but being obviously overlooked, but I’m not convinced that is the case here.

      I’m all for encouraging women into politics and then letting them compete on even playing field with men. The person selected to be a candidate should be the best person for the job. Not the one with the preferred chromosomal arrangement. It would be incredibly galling for some one to be told “you were easily the best choice, but I’m afraid the blithering idiot beside you who can barely string a sentence together has two X (or conversely, one Y) chromosome so they’re getting the job”.

      A party’s list of candidates should idealy be proportional to the make up of those putting themselves forward (and not just in terms of gender) within statistical reason. If it doesn’t, the selection process may need checked for in-built bias. However, arbitrary quotas are not the answer. They are not fair or democratic.

    18. Bob Mack says:

      I do not think it is the “rough and tumble” which prevents women becoming politicians. I believe there are many factors such as family and home ,which are time consuming to say the least.

      Another possible reason is dealing with proposterous characters like Blair McDougall ,who ond day is chastising the SNP as blood and soil Nationalists,and the next day is accusing them of abandoning Scottish interests because of the Anglian water deal.

      Politics has become a bog of lies and deceit,and woman like my other half, cannot be enthused about having to participate in that.She has told me that directly indicating she would just prefer to say it as it is rather than create hidden meanings

      Women have loads of ability,but perhaps the enthusiasm to engage in a life altering occupation ( for many reasons) is absent.

    19. Daisy Walker says:

      I see both sides to this, and I sympathise deeply with those who profoundly disagree with the above policy, particularly when they are not, and never have been discriminatory.

      As a female in her mid 40’s, working in a traditionally ‘male’ profession, my first thoughts on this were that it would be counter productive, and that it would undermine meritocracy.

      Then I listened to the arguments, put forward by Nicola, that 50 % of the population is discriminated against, that the slow/gradual policy, is not working and has not worked over a very long period.

      We are 50 % of the population now, the time for equality is now, not next week, not next year, not next decade.

      I do not understand the argument that says, ‘its a good idea, and a just one, but just leave it be for a while, come back in 6 months and hopefully things will have changed.’

      And here’s the thing, if we can get this right (or as right as humans ever do), its impact will go well beyond the target audience.

      I was working in a small team, my boss and his second in command were getting very cocky and it was getting quite sexist. I asked them, ‘what’s the difference between an an ordinary sexist bastard, and one who’s thick as mince?’ They didn’t know, and eagerly wanted the answer. ‘The one who’s thick as mince has daughters.’ They both had daughters, of whom they were proud as punch, and believe it or not they were and are both brand new, just a bit sexist, but they want better for their daughters, and their sons.

      So, I have a favour to ask, because this is the piece of the jigsaw I don’t see being filled. If you disagree with the above policy, if its the wrong tool for the job, will you analyse the problem, forensically, factually, will you look at the policies that do work, that partially work, that don’t work at all, will you lay them all out and highlight them. Or is the problem so indentured, that it is interwoven into our daily lives and can no longer be seen. Except in naked statistics.

      Or perhaps things are ok as they are, perhaps making things a fairer for one group of people will ‘steal’ jobs from better qualified people…. yeh right, I’ve heard that one before somewhere, from the Tory conference.

      As a child of 7 at school us girls decided we would like to play football. The boys kicked (not literally) us off the pitch and wouldn’t let us. We had a stand in teacher – a woman. When she heard about this, she made it clear that we could. For a whole year we got to play football, and we loved it. Then the old teacher came back and within a day and without any co-ordination or discussion, we were kicked off the pitch again. Laddies aged 7. They know their place, and they are not about to share it if they can get away with it. Be nice if they grew up.

      Best wishes to all. One bit of decency at a time.

    20. Betty Boop says:

      @ kailyard rules 11:08am

      Betty Boop…Your first sentence applies equally to men.

      Hi kailyard r, I would agree if most men had the type of family responsibilities to which I refer. It does apply to anyone in those circumstances, but, women are generally the main family carers and most can’t afford to hire help even if they wanted to do so.

      In the end, I am not too fussed whether a politician is male or female as long as they are fit for purpose, but, a decent balance would be preferable.

    21. Brian Powell says:

      On the subject of fairness; J Corbyn came to Scotland yesterday to tell us what we have known for a long time about the unfairness of Tory cuts, and the devastating effects they are having on our society, and which Scottish Labour said, somehow magically, wouldn’t happen if ‘we’ voted No.

    22. galamcennalath says:

      There’s another big effect found widely beyond and in WM (though not in the Scottish Parliament).

      A third of MPs are privately educated and a quarter are Oxbridge. How many of these are female? Some possibly, but few I wager.

      Take this lot out of the equation and I’ll also wager the remainder approach a better gender balance.

      The Scottish Parliament is 35% female, WM 29%. The difference is probably due to the posh boy old boy network at WM.

      With this male centric network almost everywhere, (especially down south) gender balance is impossible.

    23. handclapping says:

      Right we need to make up the quota. Here is your shortlist:-
      Kez, JaBa, Theresa May and Edwina.

    24. manandboy says:

      Ok. Stu is having the day off, we hope he enjoys the game/s and for very practical reasons he has left us a topic for discussion. It is not a subject which is close to Stu’s heart, but that’s fine too and is a rather astute choice. I

      But, are we really going to spend an entire Saturday watching two rugby matches and debating the pro’s and con’s of gender quotas in politics during the breaks. (With each word I type, my appreciation of stu increases) No we’re not. For rugby fans the two matches are ‘must see’ games, while those not interested in rugby may well be very interested in gender quotas.

      I hope everyone has a very enjoyable day.

    25. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      It really could be very simple.
      Have a male and a female candidate list in each constituency and elect one from each.

    26. mrbfaethedee says:

      If controlling the (binary) gender balance of candidates by discrimination against one gender in favour of another is necessary – why didn’t the SNP (and other proponents of this sort of measure in the SNP and beyond) show the courage of their convictions and limit party membership in the same way?

      The SNP gained a huge number of members recently, many of who will help shape party policy, as well as being the pool from which candidates may be drawn – so why no enforced gender discrimination at the fundamental level of the party?

      If strict numeric gender equilty is required in political parties, why just at the highy visible end? Surely if it’s what you believe in, sacrificing some male members 😉 would have been worth it to guarantee a party that was ‘gender balanced’ at its very fabric.

    27. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Not really keen on all-female lists just to make up the numbers.
      But we do need to accept that a party with a low number of female politicians might get punished by the electorate, of which women are a slight majority now.”

      Aye, because having 50/50 candidates has really helped Labour against the SNP.

    28. Mosstrooper says:

      I do not agree with the idea of female quotas, I do agree with the idea of rising through merit. Nicola is entitled to her opinion which is just that her opinion. what she must not be allowed to do is to assume that her opinion is SNP policy just because she wishes it so.

      Fortunately the democracy at the heart of the SNP will ensure the opinions of the majority will prevail. And if it doesn’t align with my beliefs then I will accept it and carry on because that is what big grown up people do and I will continue to fight for an Independent Scotland as I have fought for the past 60 years.

    29. Fireproofjim says:

      The National today, in its Editorial, says it should be a great source of pride that the leaders of the major parties in Scotland are all women, and whatever you may feel about them as politicians, it seems quite natural that women should occupy these posts.
      I agree, and despite disliking a lot about the Tories and Slab, it has never occurred to me that their leaders should not be women.

    30. X_Sticks says:

      @Ronnie

      Brilliant spoof there Ronnie, really funny. Well, would be funny if it wasn’t SO close to the truth. Fired it out to twitter 😀

    31. heedtracker says:

      UK politics is a mad house so quotas are essential. Women, can’t live with them but they’re everywhere, except politics.

    32. galamcennalath says:

      Why gender quotas? Why not age related quotas? Why not socio-economic quotas? Why not ethic quotas? Where do you stop to achieve representative representation?

      Apply quotas of any description and you probably are discriminating against a lot of able competent people who should be representing us.

      I think quotas are bad.

      Other approaches need to be taken to try to encourage a wide mix of candidates to stand. And, by those means move towards balance, and not just gender balance.

    33. Sandra says:

      The best incentive to get women into politics isn’t quota lists but strong role models like Nicola herself and younger women like Mhairi Black. Assertive, successful women who come across as real and familiar. This will break down prejudice and make politics an attractive option.

      Margaret Thatcher is often cited in this context, but I think she did more to discourage women. She was such a grotesque, unnatural creation with her phoney voice and platinum hairdo, not to mention her hectoring persona. And she never trusted another woman enough to include them in her cabinet.

    34. Robert Louis says:

      Blah, blah, female candidates, blah, blah, male candidates, blah, blah, I disagree, blah, blah, I agree, blah, blah, outrage… zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

      Or, to coin a phrase once used by a former failed Labour MP (can’t even remember his name now) ‘who cares’.

    35. ArtyHetty says:

      What to do, and Nicola on the front of the graun. I can just hear my unionist, and avid Saturday graun reading friends (female), in Northumberland snigger and say, ‘they are living in cloud cuckoo land as usual up there!’.

      But really why are we having to even have this discussion it’s 2015. Of course we need a good balance but perhaps more importantly the political landscape should reflect society as a whole, ie
      people from all backgrounds to have a chance in decision making politics.

      With a few weeks training, many people would be well capable of taking on important roles in politics. I have a ‘cloud cuckoo’ vision that there would be a two year turn around for those sitting in the commons, not five with those sitting on their butts having no more qualification than having been to a posh school. I would also get rid of the royal family, and if people want a head of state, I would have a committee of people choosing someone from the community, who would do the job for a year, no palaces, no crown, just a wee flat in their own town, and they can go round doing good and waving if they want, and encouraging people to grow veg stuff like that. Each constituency would take their turn. :))

      Crazy I know, but the way things are being done now is not conducive to a modern democracy, treating the population like school chidren, except of course in Scotland where the government actively encourage all of us to get involved, take part in consulations etc, but there’s me, being all ‘utopian’ again.

    36. Capella says:

      We’ve always had quotas. Until recently it’s been 100% male in decision making bodies. It didn’t need to be spelt out (though it often was).

      Nicola is only suggesting redressing the balance.

    37. John Moss says:

      Equality and quotas don’t go together.

      As for more women in politics…when I think of Thatcher, Dugdale, Baillie, Davidson, Curran et al, I just don’t think so.

      The idea that women will make for better decision-making etc is a myth.

    38. Ken500 says:

      It’s OK to have a woman’ list as long as there is a choice of women on the list. Not annointed , but voted for by the members. If Political Parties want to win elections.

      The SNP did so well at GE because women (half the population) came out and voted for Nicola. It could make women more willing to vote for Independence.

    39. Martin says:

      Capella, two wrongs don’t make a right. Punishing the innocents of the future for the guilty of the past will only cause division.

    40. Daisy Walker says:

      Well said Capella – not just 100% male decision making bodies, but an overwhelmingly privately educated Oxbridge decision making bodies. The old boys network is the biggest, longest running Quota going and its so established it doesn’t even need a name.
      Are they there on merit – Osborn? Chancellor of the Exchec. and not a Mathematical/Accountancy qualification to his name… just as well he’s related to the Queen.
      Irritable Duncan Smith? A made up rank in the army, a rich wife and a catalogue of work disasters…merit?

      If quotas are the wrong tool for the job – and I agree with the argument that they may well be – can the people who find discrimination on the grounds of gender unacceptable, please identify and address the problem of this discrimination and find a better tool.

      Because the status quo is just that.

    41. Mairi Bhan says:

      If candidates were selected on merit alone, there would tend to be a 50:50 gender split, and there isn’t. I’m not saying that evil selectors are skewing numbers for their own ends, more that a range of factors have an influence on who ends up holding public office, and quotas are one way of making up for that, albeit a top-down approach.

      It’s a difficult question, but I do think it’s misleading to suggest that the choice is between quotas and merit selection – the quota is making up for factors which gravitate against merit selection, imo.

    42. liz says:

      as an SNP member, I don’t agree with all women lists and voted against it at last year’s conference.

      However it is an issue which NS seems very keen to push and it is not a big enough issue for me to leave the party.

      There are some candidates chosen from all women lists being put forwad for the Holyrood elections, so lets see if it makes a difference.

      I’m sorry you’re having the day off Rev as yesterday was a bruising day with the mud getting slung about on twitter by the great Glenn etc, and it would be good to have your acerbic wit to boost morale.

    43. Dr Jim says:

      Things your Teachers said in Primary School:

      Can the boys please slow down and let the girls catch up

      Can the boys not play so rough remember girls can get hurt more easily

      Can the boys each take one of the girls hands please

      Can the girls stop talking please

      Can the girls stop passing notes please

      Can the boys stop climbing on things please

      Can the girls leave the flowers where they are please

      We’re different, we’re not equal, we’re not the same,

      When women start talking men just want to get away, anywhere else but where they are

      When men start talking women roll their eyes in the “OH dear God would you listen to him”

      It’s time for men and women to stand up and be honest, the only time we’re interested in talking to each other is when there’s a risk of “Chemistry” the rest of the time neither gender could give a shit

      We have very little regard for each others opinion but like to pretend that we do so we talk the PC talk and make the correct noises in the correct places until we can each turn away and forget the other even lives

      This is the one policy I disagree with Nicola Sturgeon on
      and it’s simple :

      David Cameron thinks the FM is a pain
      Nicola Sturgeon thinks the PM is a pain

      Neither of the two of them can stand the other, he’s a Misogynistic Moron and a Mummies boy
      While she’s (much as I like her) a pedantic misguided feminist

      Now I know I’ve upset some folk, but I wont take it back because I’m sensitive and tough at the same time, but I can cry easily but not when folk are looking coz I’m tough

      What even is equality and who gets to measure it

    44. Mairi Bhan says:

      @Dr Jim

      We see the same picture, just draw a completely different conclusion!

    45. Capella says:

      The experiment has been done on women on Boards. Norway is the obvious best example. They introduced a 40% quota in 2006 and there are hundreds of thousands of hits in google on the subject.

      “Easier to dismiss is the still-common objection that quotas are anti-meritocratic: that is more true of the status quo. Oodles of research demonstrates that women are evaluated less positively than identically qualified men when applying for stereotypically male jobs, such as leadership roles. One study found that a commitment by hiring committees to shortlists with at least 25% women helped to remove anti-woman bias.”

      https://archive.is/i6uIZ

      Plenty evidence out there.

    46. gill says:

      What is this “day off” thing you speak of?

    47. Kennedy says:

      Since Rev is having a day off.

      OT:
      when SNP come to reject the Scotland Bill homeopathy that is the watered down Smith Commision, should the SNP call a snap referendum as the Greeks did to drive it home to Westminster that Scotland rejects the proposals not just the SNP?

    48. ann says:

      Even when candidate quotas at 50/50, at the end of they day it is the SNP membership who finally elect their champions.

      Me out of the candidate selections for an MP and an MSP, I selected a male and a female as I felt that they had the right credentials and broady agreed with what I believe in and not because of their sex.

    49. Grouse Beater says:

      Elaine: “WOS complete failure to grasp the concept of male privilege”

      Not really. Many of the successful women I know eschew the artificial ghetto of women only events and biased selection. They feel it demeaning and patronising.

      That does not mean they have not suffered at the hands of envious or ambitious men. (And women, who are often no different.) It means they knew they had ability.

      They exercised it, convinced others of it, men and women, and did so by their endeavours and social skills.

      Like myself, all of them dislike the harpy brigade. They see the mediocre desperate to gain promotion for the mediocre.

      That’s what tends to happen by these selection procedures. If you are uninformed, of lowly ability, you tend to promote those of like accomplishment because it’s comforting.

    50. TD says:

      Gender quotas can only be justified if gender equality amongst candidates is, in and of itself, a desirable thing. Can anyone explain to me why this would be desirable?

      I would suggest that what is desirable is having the best policies effectively implemented in a democratic and accountable manner. Or in the case of opposition politicians, it is desirable that they scrutinise, constructively oppose and present alternatives. It may be that these genuinely desirable outcomes would be best achieved through gender balance, but if that is the case I don’t get it. A good policy, well implemented by a man is no better or worse than a good policy well implemented by a woman.

      Gender quotas are in reality true sex discrimination in that gender is treated as paramount over all other qualities and traits. If these quotas are applied, it means that selection committees may be required to reject superior candidates (who happen to be male) because inferior candidates happen to be female and their selection will make up the quota. Is this really how we want to operate?

      Targets on the other hand I think are acceptable. I can see no down side in saying “we want more women to become candidates, so we will encourage more women to enter the selection process”. But if that process, run on merit, gives say a 60:40 split in favour of one sex or the other, then so be it. The trouble with quotas, as opposed to targets, is that they mandate the outcome of the selection process. That is fundamentally undemocratic.

    51. Mairi Bhan says:

      TD says

      “If these quotas are applied, it means that selection committees may be required to reject superior candidates (who happen to be male) because inferior candidates happen to be female and their selection will make up the quota”

      By the way, it also works the other way round 🙂 🙂

    52. Ruby says:

      I’m not too keen on reading what The Guardian have to say about the ‘Women in The World’ conference I would ideally like to listen to the interviews.
      I am on the look out to see if there is a recording of them anywhere. So far I have found

      http://nytlive.nytimes.com/womenintheworld/

    53. mogabee says:

      I hope you have a good day off Stu. Are you having a lazy day with your parents or doing something special?

      Either way, enjoy.

      I’ve commented on this subject before and have decided like others to wait and see how the quotas run.

      Life’s too short to get your panties in a bunch about it!

    54. Dr Jim says:

      I posted a silly wee post earlier for a laugh and it was only posted to demonstrate differences that are immediate in folks heads when they hear words like equality and quotas

      Seriously though, much though I’m in awe of Nicola Sturgeon (praise her name)and couldn’t for the life of me do what she does there’s one thing she can’t do

      And that’s change or speed up evolution, it goes at the pace it goes, and to attempt to measure human qualities by comparing gender as any anthropologist will tell you is impossible

      Humans are not cars or machines or even, (though some might wish it so), robots, we cannot fire a starting gun and say change by next Thursday at 10 o clock or we’ll fail to evolve

      It’s a laudable ambition to have and a great Soundbite and political strategy but in order to make it a fact, you can’t
      Because as a species we’re too young yet, we’ve not long, in evolutionary terms got started, we’re still not able to stop killing each other for money or land so how we’re supposed to change attitudes in a finger snap of time to suit that political Soundbite is unfortunately beyond us at this time

      There are a thousand clever opinions on anything, so pick one and the other 999 will disagree or agree for the sake of another reason or are they lying, and it’s because we’re still not that far up the monkey chain yet

      Except for Nicola (and I really do think she’s terrific)
      But now you’re not sure if I’m lying, see what I mean

    55. awizgonny says:

      So it’s a big enough deal to post the article, but not big enough to address the inequity that gives rise to a call for quotas?
      If this isn’t right or fair, then what is?

    56. heedtracker says:

      Women also face neo fascism opposition UKOK style that is quite different from what men do do-

      http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/jul/16/new-statesman-cover-motherhood-reinforces-prejudice-sturgeon

      As toryboy world of counterjumpers pile in with stuff like-

      Charlotte Church in rancid The Graun, “Dismissed by Michael Gove as “a comfortable millionaire spouting [her] opinion”, Church hit back that, as the child of a working class family who remains close to her Welsh roots, she certainly knew more “normal people” than him. Her own fortune – of which she says she around £3m remains rather than the often-reported £11m — doesn’t exclude her from campaigning on poverty, she insists: she would willingly pay 70% tax to a government committed to protecting public service”

      So listening to just one more millionaire toryboy like Gove, also from a working class family and private school boy, fees all paid by taxpayer, usual teamGB hypocrisy, requires patience.

      Meanwhile big angry red faced placemen and shills at BBC Scotland, spend their work day trying desperately to overturn Scottish democracy with their ongoing ferocious monstering of Michelle Thompson, based on what may well be nothing at all.

      Strong stomach required, unless you’re tory. Then you become a great goddess of teamGB/BBC, for life

      http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/13793349.Michelle_Mone__I_m_officially_a_Lady/

      Irony wise, if toryboy Mike Gove wanted to go to private school today, fees paid by taxpayer, it wouldn’t happen. Red tories Bomber Bliar and Crash Gordon scrapped all bursaries like the what Gove got almost immediately they won in 97.

      Yet now, Mike Gove’s boys only old school Gordons College now allows girls.

    57. yesindyref2 says:

      @Rev
      Nice. Attacking an SNP policy in public, you’ll get your bottie smacked 😉

    58. Bit of a stushie says:

      Justin Kenrick @11.19 and Daisy Walker @11.32 put the case very well.

      Those who argue against quotas because they are discriminatory and prevent people of merit being selected miss one crucial point. They would be right if selection was entirely on merit now. But it isn’t. Talented women are not selected and men of limited ability sometimes are. The reasons behind this are many, complex and often hidden in cultural conventions and stereotypes that are so ingrained we don’t notice them.

      Some posters mention the barrier of women’s caring/domestic responsibilities. Why are these women’s responsibilities? Why are they not shared equally with men? I have long thought that greater gender equality in public and working life would be easier to achieve if there was greater domestic gender equality, particularly in relation to caring responsibilities.

      The evidence from countries where quotas have been used is that they DO work. I have not heard anyone suggesting quotas should be a permanent fixture in Scotland. Instead they are proposed as a temporary solution. Other measures do not work or are too slow. However, once a reasonable gender balance is achieved (probably around 40% women), quotas can be withdrawn and other measures to encourage diversity should be enough to ensure an appropriate balance continues.

      John Moss @12.31 says: “The idea that women will make for better decision-making etc is a myth.”

      No it isn’t. In business, companies with women and men on their boards perform better financially. At other levels, mixed teams are better at solving problems and are more successful. Why would diversity in political life not be just as effective?

      Unless you really believe that women are under represented at present because they are less capable, quotas are a reasonable, if blunt, short-term action to make sure women feature in public life in roughly equal numbers to their proportion in the population.

    59. yesindyref2 says:

      By the way, enjoy the rugby. Good luck to them.

    60. shiregirl says:

      Bob Mack @ 1131 says:
      Women have loads of ability,but perhaps the enthusiasm to engage in a life altering occupation ( for many reasons) is absent.

      I’m a nurse(and a woman) and everyday, without fail, something happens which is some way is life altering. My enthusiasm remains, whilst I also run a home, take care of the kids and my partner and all the other things that go with it. I also study in my own time – not for extra money, but to benefit my role and my patients.

      I think you would find that the majority of working women, whatever their remit have very demanding jobs and their occupation is part of their multifacted role – which is very demanding and life altering.

      You try fitting all that running a house, kids and keeping a job going, keeping to a budget, etc and not having your life altered. The implication that many women lack the enthusiasm to take on a challenging career is way off. Perhaps it is lack of opportunity.

      I find your comment ‘women have loads of ability’ slightly patronising.

    61. otherdemons says:

      Dr Jim:

      Oh my where to start??
      Don’t you realise while there are indeed plenty of biological differences between genders, there are also plenty that are sociological constructs, and things like “will girls stop talking?” at school is a perfect example of the latter.
      Do you ignore comments here when they are written by women? As seemingly you do in real life – in which case it’s no wonder women run away when you open your gob!
      And you really need to step out of your cave if you truly believe that women and men cannot have any relationship that is anything but sexual. It’s an attitude that I find more prevalent in the UK than in other European countries* by the way and is anything but constructive.

      Anyway I am uneasy about quotas, or any positive discrimination for that matter. I think there will always be occupations that are dominated by one gender. But we need to make progress on equality of opportunity which there won’t be as long as girls grow up in an environment where politics, IT, science and management jobs are seen as simply male jobs. I work in IT and get along well with the guys, and while I’d be happy to see more women I’d like to see them get there on merit too.
      I sort of fell into IT by chance after studying languages, when I grew up I was never pushed towards maths and sciences and was even told that the one reason for studying sciences would be that with the male/female ratio I could find myself a husband with a good position! With such social attitudes there simply isn’t equality of opportunities, and that obviously applies to politics.

      *I really enjoyed a Stellan Skarsgård’s interview in the Independent recently:
      Thanks to Scandinavia being the most emancipated part of the world, you have female characters that are very hard to invent in a more repressed, sexist society like Britain. I heard they lit Tower Bridge pink because they had an heir that didn’t have a penis.”
      and OT for this thread but great quote anyway:
      “We filmed in apartments smaller than my bathroom, where five people were living. I was brought up an Anglophile. But you [the English] seem to be extremely happy with the social differences in this country…[and] it’s going to get worse. What has made the development of society possible is not greed, but compassion and empathy – otherwise we’d still be running around killing each other in the f***ing jungle.”

    62. K1 says:

      yesindyref2 says:
      10 October 2015 at 2:24 pm
      @Rev
      Nice. Attacking an SNP policy in public, you’ll get your bottie smacked 😉

      yesindyref2 says:
      9 October 2015 at 9:17 pm
      @Valerie

      And keep the personal snide remarks – to yourself, they have no place on a forum. Any forum.

      Just saying yesindyref. Let it go. 🙂

    63. otherdemons says:

      Reading the subsequent post I guess I swallowed the bait a bit too quick.
      But the evolutionary argument is a fallacy too. Patriarchies are a relatively recent social construct. Prehistorical societies are known to have been more egalitarian, and there have been matriarchies too.

    64. dakk says:

      So long as they do a good job,I don’t care whether they are male,female,or hermaphrodite.

      Though hermaphrodite might be quite nice for a change.

    65. Robert Unwin says:

      @Flower of Scotland

      True, Ian Fraser didn’t clarify that what issue there is seems to be about alleged mortgage fraud, not the “exploitation” of “vulnerable” sellers per se. Though to be fair Fraser did state that this was the only “real” scandal to have hit the SNP in 7 years (a remarkably low amount for a government), and both he and Kaiser mentioned the extensive coverage given to it – which Kaiser calls “inordinate” given the “garden-variety” nature of the scandal – and that it may be related to media bias towards the SNP and its aims.

    66. Thepnr says:

      My default position on female quota’s was like many others, “can’t be right”. “should be there on merit” etc. etc.

      Funnily enough until around 3 years ago my default position on Independence was as a straight NO. The truth is I was ignorant about the possibilities that Independence offered, just as I am ignorant about the effectiveness of even the point of having female quotas in politics as well as in business.

      So, just this afternoon I tried to learn a little more about them, where they are used, do they have any effect? are they democratic or antidemocratic? Well your not going to learn much in a couple of hours but what I have learned is enough for me to challenge my default position and accept I may have much to learn.

      One example might help highlight what I mean.

      Denmark, Sweden, Finland and the Netherlands have achieved high levels of women in parliament (37%, 47%, 40% and 41% respectively)

      http://ec.europa.eu/justice/gender-equality/files/quota-working_paper_en.pdf

      Denmark interestingly has no quotas whatsoever, the other 3 countries have voluntary party quotas so there is no legislation involved. The only other EU country other than Denmark without quotas of any type is Ireland which has 14% of women in Parliament.

      What is life like for the people living in those countries? So I looked at this:

      “Quality of life in Europe – facts and views – overall life satisfaction”

      and there was an interesting figure.

      Life satisfaction from a cross country perspective

      Figure 2 shows that the average life satisfaction varied significantly between countries, ranging from 4.8 in Bulgaria to 8.0 in Sweden, Denmark and Finland. Differences between countries in the share of people with low satisfaction were even more remarkable. They ranged from 5.6 % in the Netherlands to 64.2 % in Bulgaria. Proportions of people with high life satisfaction varied from 5.9 % in Bulgaria (followed by Hungary (11.6 %) and Latvia (12.6 %)) to 42.1 % in Denmark.

      http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Quality_of_life_in_Europe_-_facts_and_views_-_overall_life_satisfaction

      Note how highly these 4 countries with a high proportion of women in Parliament score in terms of life satisfaction of their populous.

      I know that if an Independent Scotland was governed much like Denmark, Sweden, Finland and the Netherlands compared to the UK. I think I’d be a whole lot happier too.

      Guess I best read a bit more.

    67. Lollysmum says:

      Ruby at 2.04pm
      Here you go Livestream video of both days of Women in the World

      http://livestream.com/WomenInTheWorld/LondonSummit

      Nicola around 7 mins, Mhairi at about 9 mins but I found myself being fascinated by all of the stories from the women taking part

    68. Ruby says:

      I haven’t given much thought to whether I think

      ‘Quotas needed to help women enter politics’

      If I were forced right now to say yes or no I think I would say no. I don’t like the idea of women or anyone else being ‘a protected species’ I don’t like all the PC correctness where you risk being accused of being sexist, racist, anti-English etc etc if you dare to criticise a person of a different race, sex or place of birth.

      The behaviour of the mudslinging, vicious gossiping witch-hunting female Holyrood politicians are doing nothing to help convince people that we need to encourage more women to enter politics.

      I can perfectly understand why men might be opposed to these quotas.

      On another thread I criticised the ‘mudslinging witch-hunting vicious gossiping bitch trio’ and got a reply from

      ‘Brian Doonthetoon says:
      9 October, 2015 at 11:02 pm

      Hi Ruby.

      I’m just relieved that it was a female of the opposite gender who typed that!

      8=)’

      I don’t think that is fair that I can say these things and ‘Brian Doonthetoon’ can’t for fear of being branded sexist or whatever it was that made him fear being hung drawn & thirded.

      I’m so glad as yet males are not ‘a protected species’ and I am free to say whatever I like about them. However I suspect that things might change in future and if I dare to say nasty sexist things & use his toothbrush & face-cloth to clean the bath & toilet bowl I might have the police at my door.

      I’m off to read why Nicola thinks it’s a good idea to have quotas so I might be back with a different point of view.

    69. KathyT says:

      “John Moss says:
      10 October, 2015 at 12:31 pm

      “As for more women in politics…when I think of Thatcher, Dugdale, Baillie, Davidson, Curran et al, I just don’t think so.”

      As for more men in politics… when I think of Blair, Brown, Osbourne, Hunt, Heath, Cameron et al, I just don’t think so.

      I’m utterly on the fence with splinters in my arse on this topic, but that is a ridiculous comment.

    70. Dr Jim says:

      @otherdemons

      Read my second post which clarifies your reaction to the first and attempts to make my point

      My background was in Behavioural Analysis there’s no offence meant I promise you and regular posters on the site would tell you I’m not some horrible cave dweller growly man

    71. Ruby says:

      Lollysmum

      Thank you!

      I’ll try to find time to watch I’m kinda busy with shopping, cleaning, cooking, womens work at the moment.

    72. Robert Peffers says:

      @Daisy Walker says: 10 October, 2015 at 11:32 am:

      ” … I see both sides to this, and I sympathise deeply with those who profoundly disagree with the above policy, particularly when they are not, and never have been discriminatory.”

      Like perhaps myself, Daisy. I spent 15 years as the union rep in a MOD Radio/Radar/Electronics workshop. This had several types of employment. Office Staff, Professional Industrial Civil Service Diagnosticians, Industrial Technical Tradespeople and skilled+unskilled Labourers.

      There was, though, grey areas between the several grades and as the only resident Union/Professional Association rep I fell heir to doing most of the representation and such as safety walk-rounds for the entire non-management workforce.

      Then a problem arose among the skilled/unskilled labour force of gender equality. Not my Union but the other Union Reps just sloped shoulders and left it to me. The problem was that the Skilled/unskilled labour force were to undergo a re-grading exercise to cut the number of pay grades.

      Most females had been doing cleaning duties while males had jobs like overhead crane driver, slingers, electro-plate machine operators. If they were all to get graded the men felt they were entitled to the top grade and the females were just skivvies to clean.

      War broke out and I was in no man/ no woman’s land between the two. It went like this – I sat the men down and listened to their POV. Then did the same with the Ladies. Then sat them all down together. My solution was if they were all wanting on the higher grade then they must all agree to undertake the same duties. The ladies had to shift heavy gear and the men to push brooms.

      The obvious happened. However, I had taken the chance to take one of the ladies aside and inform her that the moving of heavy gear around should not be done by brute force as the rules stated no one should attempt to lift anything they considered too heavy for themselves to lift but that courses were available to learn how to use the many neglected lifting aids and the ladies could be on the higher rate and use the proper equipment.

      The result was that the ladies learned to do the heavy work and the men went on complaining about having to sweep floors. Then the more delicate ladies removed themselves from the heavy work, (not because they couldn’t cope but because they couldn’t be bothered with the more thick headed men sneering at them for using the correct gear instead of brute force).

      Next up the Brute force guys applied for jobs elsewhere in the yard where they could show off their brute force and bicepts. Peace broke out.

      There, Daisy, is the answer. Teach both males and females there are more ways to skin cats and some are better suited to use each method. It does, though, require that both see the others strength and weakness.

    73. handclapping says:

      We will need “quotas” untill party members stop thinking of politics as a battle. Men go off to fight, women stay home ever since 698 and the law of the innocents so there is 1300 years of conditioning to overcome.

      If politics is seen as wanting and working to get the best for Scotland there is absolutely no bar to women entering and there will be a natural increase in the number of women in politics.

    74. David McDowell says:

      Dr Jim at 1:08pm

      “When men start talking women roll their eyes in the ‘OH dear God would you listen to him'”

      As expertly demonstrated by Yvette Cooper and Liz Kendall when it was Jeremy Corbyn’s turn to speak at Labour Party leadership hustings.

      I called it their “Oh you sad, pathetic little man” face.

      Strangely it vanished, to be replaced by sunny smiles and batting eyelashes, on the day Corbyn was elected leader.

    75. Dr Jim says:

      Quick word on the death of the sainted Geoffrey Howe wonderful man that he was

      The minute he and his kind refer to “The people” as the “Rank and File”

      That’s the minute you lose my interest….Bloody Tories…of any colour

    76. otherdemons says:

      Dr Jim: yes I did read your further comment, after posting my first reply.
      Still not sure about the evolutionary comment – why is the UK so far behind Scandinavia and other European countries eg.? Does the ‘Establishment’ shape the views of the populace so much? Is it because consumerism has a stronger hold (the example of blue/pink boys/girls clothes/toys etc – limits the number of items that can be passed down a sibling to another).
      I can agree that imposing some ideas too quickly isn’t a good thing. Like the concept of borders and nation states in regions where they never existed. But that’s another matter entirely.

    77. Dr Jim says:

      @David McDowell

      Ah! The human condition

      Unfortunately still based on “I’m alright but you’re not”

    78. Kirsty says:

      I find it a bit odd that some men get so angry about perceived discrimination against them but don’t seem to mind about the discrimination that affects the other, roughly, 50% of the population. Women have been discriminated against for thousands of years and despite all attempts to the contrary, women are still being discriminated against.

      For instance, many men will have got a job when there was a better female candidate but the bosses didn’t want to hire someone who could get pregnant; many men will have been paid more than their female colleagues for doing precisely the same job, etc. etc. I can’t ever remember hearing a man talk about merit and fairness when those things happen to a woman so it seems a bit hypocritical that some men feel it’s so important now, especially when that’s all women have ever asked for and have never received.

      I’m not fond of quotas personally and it’s a shame that it’s had to come to this but the inequality must be addressed. Nothing else seems to have worked so as a temporary measure to get the ball rolling, I think it’s something we should at least try. If anyone had a better idea, I’d be all ears but I haven’t heard any so far. I think the real difference would come if we could also address some of the other inequalities such as equal pay, men doing their equal share of the child-rearing and housework, changing attitudes towards women, etc. Then we might have a truly equal, fair society where these kinds of measures aren’t needed and we will have a true meritocracy.

    79. heedtracker says:

      ” many men will have got a job when there was a better female candidate but the bosses didn’t want to hire someone who could get pregnant; many men will have been paid more than their female colleagues for doing precisely the same job, ”

      It goes beyond that though, British women earn much less than men, low, middle and high earners. Even the Torygraoh says women may earn 40% less than men in their working lives, doing exactly the same jobs.

      Who’s the decider in what is a fundamental discrimination and economic failure and how can it be sorted? Who’s at the top of the biggest unions, who was in Labour office for three terms?

      Familly tax credits are cut and who’s going to take the brunt of brave new Toryboy world? Women. And why are there less women in politics again and why do women earn less and why does it never change?

      Get into politics girls!

    80. ArtyHetty says:

      Ruby@2.59pm

      I advise online grocery shopping, even if I had a car I would not waste my time walking round a big supermarket, well maybe just occassionaly to use the loos.

      Also, the guys delivering the shopping are always lovely and charming, it’s never a woman, which seems a bit strange. Looks like bloody hard work, but doable by any strong woman and they do exist. :))

      Much prefer gardening to housework, and art. Chores should be shared, like good chocolate.

    81. Jim Thomson says:

      O/T – BBC GMS had a piece on the Embra trams this morning. Lisa Summers did quite well until she mentioned the SNP, framed in the time honoured BBC negative context. No mention of any other political party involved in the enterprise in the entire piece.

      It’s on iPlayer http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06dqqdj#play and starts at 1h 18 mins. The SNP mention is at approx 1h 20m 20secs.

      Maybe I’m just overly sensitive.

    82. Daisy Walker says:

      To a certain extent, by the time it gets to Quotas, its too late, the damage is done and it is the end of a long chain of systems that have funnelled people with potential away.

      An example, I joined the SNP after the ref, I sent out e-mails asking members what inspired them and what they wanted from the branch. One young woman (amongst others) answered, she very much wanted to contribute and be active, however, as a single mother she absolutely could not make the branch meetings because they are held in the evenings. During the day her parents child mind while she works, so in the evenings its her shift.

      I put this to the committee, several times, and suggested every second meet be on a Saturday morning in a local child friendly venue…. no go.

      What a waste, not just in terms of one contributor, but in terms of all the other young mums/people she socialises with (and can educate), in terms of her life and work experience, and the practical experience of raising a young child today, as apposed to 10, 15, 20 years ago.

      I hold that the benefits in equality for one group, make space for and reality for equality for all.

      Another example – a business leader in America took over the running of a very large steal works, financially it had seen better days and badly needed turning around. At his first shareholders meeting, he had one idea. This company was going to be the safest place to work, ever. Needless to say, the shareholders couldn’t see that improving the profits and walked out in disgust.
      However, he meant it. He meant it so much if an accident happened at work and was not properly reported – and then analysed so it would not happen again – he gave out his home phone number – to the workers. And when they took him up on it, he backed them, even going so far as to sack a MD of one of the factories. And then he encouraged them to suggest efficiency improvements, and by now they had a direct line… and low and behold, the company started making huge improvements, in moral, in profit, in efficiency, and yes, in safety.

      Just the one policy.

      I say again, Quotas may very well be the wrong tool for the job, but where are the cries of outrage at the status quo. It is not normal, it is engineered, and it can be rectified.

    83. Fiona says:

      Tt is the kind of step on the road to a fairer better and more equal society I am aiming for, however.

    84. Betty Boop says:

      @ Dr Jim

      Your second post did not mitigate the first one, but, then again, I’m busy trying to evolve to catch up with men.

      That’s without even considering views on quotas.

    85. Jack Murphy says:

      FILM. ‘Women in the World London Summit. Friday 9th October 2015.
      First Minister of Scotland interviewed in front of delegates by Harold Evans.
      Livestream Archived.
      London Summit,Day 2.
      The piece begins in the upper video at 07:01:43
      Sorry it’s a fiddly scroll—–but well worth it. 🙂

      http://livestream.com/accounts/3328422/events/4387345

    86. Dr Jim says:

      @otherdemons

      Hi, In my humble opinion Britain’s problems as you say are worse than some others and I think due to Education and Trust

      Our population over the last few years has gotten smarter so our trust in what our so called Politicians have told us in the past has been diminished due mostly to the fact we don’t like being lied to and we keep catching them at it

      Britain has been told for a very long time that we’re right about everything while other countries, not all but certainly more have had a different political culture like the ones you mention

      To set your heart on copying the American style of Culture which was originally Bastardised from our own was, and is a hideous idea but we knew no better and went along with it because when a people is continually told they’re the Bestest and the greatest on the planet, what’s not to believe

      Thing is, now we know they’re a lying bunch of Toe rags and it’s not true, so we’re running around trying to find ourselves and coming to the conclusion that we rather like the Scandywegian idea of life where the name on your trainers isn’t quite as important as the consumery idea we were used to being sold

      But, we’re angry, Politicians, Priests, Journalists, our Telly for God sake, they’ve all been at it, feeding us junk and we didn’t know it, and there’s an element of feeling stupid because we were conned and manipulated by it all

      Nicola Sturgeon at this moment in time is for Scotland Joan Of Arc, Boadicia, Cleopatra whichever famous type woman from history seen as a saviour and the thing is we all know she just might be, so we stand behind her in the hope she can deliver us from the evil that grips us

      So when she comes up with an idea for something, even if we have reservations, we say you know what I’m backing her whatever (and I’m one of those) but it doesn’t mean she’s right, but for now I for one don’t much care about that because the big picture for me is more important than a Quota here or there,

      Nicola Sturgeon is the only hope in getting us out of a terrible alliance with a badly run for profit Government of a badly run for profit Disunited Kingdom

      I looked into her eyes when she spoke to me (for thirty seconds mind) we’re not Buddies, and I believed she’s got the stuff to do it

      Just my humble opinion

    87. Dr Jim says:

      @Betty Boop

      Ah, but it wasn’t meant as mitigation only observation

    88. CameronB Brodie says:

      John Moss

      The idea that women will make for better decision-making etc is a myth.

      What is “better” decision making and which cultural lens are you viewing the evidence through? Male and female brains are structured differently, so men and women think differently. Different may be better.

      For the first time we can look across the vast literature and confirm that brain size and structure are different in males and females. – Amber Ruigrok

      This study was supported by the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, the Autism Research Trust, the Dr Hendrik Müller Vaderlandsch Fonds, the Carolus Magnus Fonds under the Prins Bernard Cultuurfonds, and the Waterloo Foundation. It was conducted in association with the NIHR CLAHRC for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust.

      http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/males-and-females-differ-in-specific-brain-structures

    89. indigo says:

      SNP branch meetings not being held in pubs and / or inviting family / child participation to branch meetings would help give women access to political discussion.

      As a single parent the only way I can attend a meeting is if I bring my son along with me – and I’ve had a fair few odd looks for doing so.

      There is a culture of inaccessibility in all kinds of meetings, organisations and events for those with caring responsibilities, not just politics – same goes for the my school parent council and even the mumpreneur group!

      SNP need to think seriously about access to local politics for those with caring responsibilities before even contemplating women only lists or quotas. Women shortlists are idiotic if other access issues are not addressed.

    90. Robert Peffers says:

      Sometime you need be ridiculous to indicate just how ridiculous another matter really is. Here’s a take on that.

      Why must we have either Tory or Labour Governments at Westminster? Why not a constituency list of, say, Labour only candidates in 50% of the constituencies so as not to discriminate against the Red Tories?

      Then we could split that down again to male only lists to 50% constituencies and then split that down so as not to exclude gays but what about the old and the young. Et Al.

      Is not the whole point of governance to get the best party that the electorate wants and nothing whatsoever to do with their party, sex, age or anything other than what, THE VOTERS want and not what the political parties want?

    91. Betty Boop says:

      @ Dr Jim

      “Ah, but it wasn’t meant as mitigation only observation.”

      Perhaps, Doc, but I didn’t think much of your observation. Maybe time for an eye test.

    92. Morag says:

      …. The problem is that’s not what happens very often just now. If we had a system that was purely based on merit, we’d have gender balance because women are 52 per cent of the population….

      That’s just not true.

      It’s a simple fact that some professions and occupations are more attractive to women, and some less. If you have a system based purely on merit, and the average merit of male and female applicants is equivalent, then you will end up with a gender balance that reflects the gender distribution in the applicant pool.

      In the first half of the 20th century, almost all vets were male. This was a result of discrimination in university entrance criteria. If you were female, you had to be extraordinarily good to get in. Knowledge of this hurdle deterred some girls from applying, of course.

      Gradually the discrimination was reduced and lifted. More and more girls gained places at university to study veterinary medicine. My own class in the 1970s was the first to be equal 50/50 male/female. The Dean made a little speech to us saying that a positive decision had been taken to stop sidelining 50% of the school-leaving talent. We thought that was that, 50/50 from now on.

      How wrong we were. It’s more like 20/80 now. The vast majority of new veterinary graduates are female. Why, when women are only 52% of the population? Because women turn out to be disproportionately attracted to working with animals. The universities are receiving applications for places in the veterinary courses skewed 4 to 1 in favour of women. So, since the selection procedures are gender-blind, 80% of the intake are female.

      Should we introduce quotas now to achieve a 50% male intake and stop disadvantaging these poor boys? That’s a question for a different forum. But it illustrates the point. Left to themselves, people don’t pursue careers in a natural 50/50 gender split.

      It seems that men tend to pursue a career in politics more readily than women do. Yes, we need to make sure selection procedures are gender-blind. Yes, we need to work to ensure that a “boys’ club” culture doesn’t deter women from entering politics. But at the end of the day, if only 35-40% of applicants are female and the quality profile is equivalent between men and women, we’ll end up with only 35-40% of politicians being women.

      What are you going to do? Promote less capable women over more capable men to make your bloody quota? (Why would we admit less capable boys to vet school in preference to more capable girls, just to balance a quota?) Conscript and dragoon women who want to be vets or teachers or beauty therapists into politics against their will?

      This is all a very bad idea, but I’m certainly not leaving the SNP over it.

    93. yesindyref2 says:

      Fucking yay!

      Great captaincy by Laidlaw.

    94. Kenny says:

      As a man, I believe in positive discrimination for women. Especially in the case of the campaign for Scottish indy, because our women are so damned good!

      I can understand why women want to make it on their own merits. But I do think that positive discrimination is needed to balance out things, including the deficiencies of the past.

      What I do not like is the idea of Nicola Sturgeon sharing a platform with Theresa May! Neither do I like NS’s silly tweets bigging up Hillary Clinton. Rather naive.

      Hardly role models for OUR wonderful women of the YES movement, I would think…

    95. frogesque says:

      Scotland 36 : Samoa 33!

      C’moan Scotlaaannd!!

    96. heedtracker says:

      Morag, you cant really compare the vet profession and Holyrood, in any way. Vets are competing for a tiny number of places and so are prospective MSP’s but not on how many Highers they get. If that makes sense.

      Or, a great vet and a great MSP are two very different er, trades.

    97. heedtracker says:

      Pay inequality headlines this week-

      “Tory MEPs vote against resolution on disclosing gender pay gap in EU

      Conservatives in Europe appear to reject party’s general election pledge to force large companies to reveal difference in average pay of female and male employees”

    98. msean says:

      So,with team britian not in this tourney,England failing at the first hurdle,and Scotland going through,is this the time to ask who will you support in the world cup. Popcorn at the ready…

    99. Sassenach says:

      I hope the euphoria won’t mean the Rev. will be any less acerbic in his political media observations. I could accept an afternoon off, but…….

    100. yesindyref2 says:

      @K1 “let it go”

      When I find myself in times of trouble
      K1 and Paula come to me
      Speaking words of wisdom, let it go

      Let it go, let it go
      Let it go, let it go
      Whisper words of wisdom
      Let it go

      Quarter-finals, here here here we go

    101. Chic McGregor says:

      My physics class at Heriot-Watt had the first female Physics grad in that institution. Simply because, before then, it was a subject very few girls were drawn to.

      Biology was the main science girls went for then.

      So for whatever reason there has been a historic gender preference for certain things.

      Another factor is child birth, which even if minimal maternity leave is always taken, still amounts to a small but significant percentage reduction in the available pool of females over all.

      At least the bigger factor of women retiring 5 years earlier than men, has gone now.

      However, for me, the jury is still out on whether politics is one of those gender things.

      At first during indyref1 it seemed that women were more in the DK camp, were less inclined to vote, and those who were, were more towards NO. But by the end of the campaign all that delta had disappeared.

      Generally speaking, in my experience, women are more likely to take a calm and calculated approach to politics. Take their time to gather the information and mull things over before coming to a decision.

      However, against that general appraisal, those women who have in the past got to the very top politically have been indistinguishable from men in terms of their tribalistic hubris and aggression. Although mumsie Merkel might be rewriting that as we speak.

    102. Grouse Beater says:

      What a strange week, and what a cast of victims:

      https://grousebeater.wordpress.com/2015/10/10/unelected-rule/

    103. yesindyref2 says:

      @Kirsty
      I don’t agree with discrimination at all, and the all female short-list is definitely discriminatory and even anti-democratic. I’m male by the way. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

      Thing is that it’s probably needed, politicians need to lead from the top, and there aren’t enough female politicians. I’m more angry that such reverse discriminatory practices are still needed in the 21st century, 2015. Maybe two wrongs can make a right. I hope the policy can be reversed in the near future because it’s been successful. I also hope I win the lottery.

    104. CameronB Brodie says:

      otherdemons
      Apparently the Romans were appalled by the rights enjoyed by Celtic women and women in many of Europe’s pagan cultures. Then Europe turned Christian and pagan cultures were suppressed by a cargo-cult of patriarchal Catholic monism. The rest is history. 🙂

    105. Ruby says:

      ArtyHetty says:
      10 October, 2015 at 3:42 pm

      Ruby@2.59pm

      I advise online grocery shopping

      RUBY REPLIES:

      Good idea! I’ve invested in a number of iRobots Roomba & Scooba and they are currently vacuuming & washing my floors. I also have the number for a ‘home made meals delivery service’ they will deliver shortly.

      I have to own up and admit that I haven’t been doing ‘womens work’ I have been watching

      http://livestream.com/WomenInTheWorld/LondonSummit

      which Lollysmum very kindly found for me.

      These videos are very interesting. I’m planning on getting the ‘home made meals delivery’ service to bring me a bottle of wine and I will sit down this evening and enjoy watching the rest of these videos.

      With a great facility like ‘livestream’ who needs the BBC & Guardian journalists. We can watch these videos and make up our own minds. We can even write an opinion piece about the ‘Women In The World Summit’ Everyone can be a journalist.

      Having watched ‘Women In The World’ livestream videos I am just burst with things to say I just wish I were more skilled at this writing malarky and I didn’t struggle so much to express my views.

      Perhaps I’ll have to see about getting an iRobot ghost writer.

    106. Dr Jim says:

      When you have no answer or position you are sure of Just Insult people
      Or in the time it takes to read the paragraph of a book change a lifetime of opinion in a moment then back again the next day

      A culture change takes a little longer

    107. John Silver says:

      Every time this comes up we hear a lot from people who think its terribly important to achieve a higher proportion of women in our various parliaments, but who say all-women shortlists are not the way to achieve this.

      Interestingly, it only seems to be when all-women shortlists are suggested that it appears to be important to them. The rest of the time they appear perfectly happy with the status quo.

      At least have the honesty to say that.

      And for those who say its discrimination, do you not think that discrimination has played its part in getting us to our current (non-gender equal) place?

    108. yesindyref2 says:

      Read this for Scottish Cringe, from the Herald:

      “SCOTLAND’s hopes of reaching the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup were in the balance until the very end of this Pool B contest, but they just about deserved to go through thanks to a much-improved second half.

      (my bold) Get a life.

    109. Grouse Beater says:

      Your weekend’s resume: This short link might be easier: http://wp.me/p4fd9j-2a4

    110. galamcennalath says:

      OT Carmichael in court on Monday apparently.

      Presumably everyone who will be called as a witness will wondering what will be asked!

      And, who will be called?

      A reminder. Those four folks driving this have my admiration!

      https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-people-versus-carmichael/

    111. Betty Boop says:

      @ yesindyref2, 5:00pm

      I hope the policy can be reversed in the near future because it’s been successful. I also hope I win the lottery

      It will be off the books on 5th May 2016. The quota amendment for candidate selection was only for SG 2016 elections to see if it helped bring women forward for consideration as candidates. So, if it is proposed again, it will have to be voted on.

      Here is the wording of the amendment, re gender balance.

      “Amendment to rules on vetting and selection of Parliamentary and local government candidates.

      Gender Balance Mechanisms for selection of candidates for the 2016 Scottish Parliament Election

      1. Where any incumbent SNP constituency MSP announces their intention to stand down, the National Executive Committee may direct that an all-women shortlist should be submitted by the Constituency Branch or Association.

      2. In any constituency where more than one candidate is nominated, at least one of those candidates must be female. The National Executive Committee will have authority to add candidates to shortlists to achieve this.

      3. The National Executive Committee may take steps to balance the number of male and female candidates being submitted for Regional List rankings, and will have authority to nominate additional candidates to achieve this.

      The appendix will be deleted at 5 may 2016.”

      Do I think it would be a good idea to do that again? Well, the answer to that is wait and see. I am quite unhappy at what I perceive as misrepresentation/misunderstanding of the amendment, deliberate or not, especially by some women. The point is that merit is paramount.

    112. So maybe there should be no interference in professions.

    113. Davy says:

      It dosent matter what sex they are. They will only get a job if there mates or family are in the party. Cronyism and nepotism is rife in the SNP. No one can deny this is true.

    114. yesindyref2 says:

      @Betty Boop
      Had I been at that last conference say as a delegate, I would have voted violently against it. Now I’m not so sure.

      If I had to vote for it next appropriate conference, I’ve no idea which way I’d vote.

    115. Onwards says:

      Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
      10 October, 2015 at 12:02 pm

      “Not really keen on all-female lists just to make up the numbers.
      But we do need to accept that a party with a low number of female politicians might get punished by the electorate, of which women are a slight majority now.”

      Aye, because having 50/50 candidates has really helped Labour against the SNP.
      ————-

      Ok fair point, but if the SNP dipped below a certain percentage of female politicians then it could well become a vote-loser if the opposition chose to focus on that issue.
      Of course, Sturgeon as the leader helps to compensate.
      But say it naturally dipped to around 20%, then taking a stance as a party of social justice would start to look a bit hollow.

      Right now, even without quotas, everyone knows there is unspoken pressure to pick good women candidates. The issue is still there in the background.

      And tactically speaking, having a higher percentage of female politicians and a softer approach, may help the SNP more than other parties. Opponents like nothing better than smearing YES supporters as angry street yobs and depicting independence in terms of divorce, division and separation.
      That recent referendum survey showed 51% of men voted Yes and 58% of women voted No, so that type of campaigning is effective.

      Independence matters more to me than some short term action to boost female representation. And I think the best candidates will still shine through. Would Alex Salmond have been sidelined back in the day. I doubt it.

    116. Grouse Beater says:

      Dave the Spiv: Cronyism and nepotism is rife in the SNP. No one can deny this is true.

      If there’s a prize involved I’m happy to deny it.

    117. Croompenstein says:

      @Davy – Denseness and fuckwittery is rife in you. No one can deny this is true.. 😀

    118. Truth says:

      Once again I see a lot of misguided feminists completely missing the point.

      Their problem is not their perceived one of gender, but one of class.

      If they think quotas will make for greater opportunity for them, they are sadly mistaken.

      It may mean greater opportunity for middle class and above women (though I doubt it, the opportunity was always there they just didn’t want it), but not for the hoi polloi.

      What it will actually mean is that many talented working class men who are already up against it will be denied completely. They will suffer due to class and sex discrimination. Meanwhile their talented working class spouses will be equally denied though they will have the false hope of a quota.

      Quotas are not the answer. The answer to more women in politics is encouraging more to be interested. If they are not interested, then so be it.

    119. Ruby says:

      What is churning through my mind having watched some of the ‘Women In The World’ videos particularly the one where the young Bollywood actress is interviewed is wondering about the similarities between the ‘Scottish Cringe’ and the Cringe that holds women back.

      The young Indian actress was aware that she was seen as worthless and only fit to be a wife & mother but she didn’t believe it.

      Who fancies writing an essay?

      In what way does the ‘Scottish Cringe’ hold Scotland back and are there any similarities between the ‘Scottish Cringe’ and the need for quotas to help women enter politics? Is there such a thing as ‘Female Cringe’

      If you were to look at ‘the need for quotas to help women’ and think of Westminster as being male and Scotland as being female would that give you a different perspective?

      Perhaps when I get the bottle of wine things might become clearer!

    120. Taranaich says:

      Because this isn’t the fairer, better, equal Scotland we’re fighting for.

      I just got out of a huge, serious situation that could have jeopardised my personal and private reputation because somebody presumed to use “we” when he really meant “I.” You run Wings Over Scotland, but is this “we” as in you, or “we” as in you, Scott Minto, Andrew Leslie, Doug Daniel, and all the other contributors? That’s the problem with use of collective “we.”

      Don’t fight for the Scotland you disagree with. Fight for the Scotland which is decided by its people. Fight for the Scotland which can choose what kind of country it wants to be for itself. Fight for a Scotland that isn’t run by paedophile-enabling war-profiteering poor-oppressing soul-destroying incompetent lunatics being aided and abetted by compliant media, business oligarchs and establishment cabals.

      Ultimately, we’re all fighting for a slightly different Scotland. Some are fighting for a socialist republic; others a Scandinavian-style democracy; still others want to keep it much like it is now. But all are united in believing that it should be Scots who decide how the country is going to be run.

      Enjoy your day off.

    121. Robert Louis says:

      Dr Jim at 406pm.

      Agree whoeheartedly. In all political parties, you never get EVERYTHING you want, but for me, the SNP and Nicola Sturgeon are the people to lead Scotland to a better place.

      The sooner we get out of the americanised Neo liberal, uncaring, ‘me first’ yookay, and become independent again, the better.

      I agree, Nicola really has got what it takes – a real leader. Oh, and coincidentally, after today the same goes for Greig Laidlaw. 🙂

    122. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Truth at 5.52

      It’s not “the hoi polloi”, it’s “hoi polloi”. “Hoi” in ancient Greece is the equivalent of “the”.

      In today’s world you are what class you want to behave as.
      Do you perhaps mean those with no abilities, objectives or ambition. They are classless

    123. msean says:

      You must mean that in the same way that the same people always turn up on the same programmes on tv even though they may not be relevant to the subject but are of the same party or of bettertogether.

    124. Robert Louis says:

      O/T,

      Feeling on an up after the Scotland win? Then do something to make Scotland a better place, donate a wee bit of money to the Orkney 4, who are standing up for decency, and against the lying behaviour of Libdem Alistair Carmichael, when he was Secretary of State for Scotland.

      It may look like they have lots of money on the funding site, but their costs at the court of session are huge, going up by huge chunks with each day. Every wee contribution added helps.

      The case is back in court on Monday.

      https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-people-versus-carmichael/#/updates

    125. yesindyref2 says:

      OT
      Dipped into the murky depths of the DT last night and today, about the infamous higher maths question, and if anyone wanted a reason for Independence, the general tone of the comments would do it.

      But I was struck by this reply from someone to presumably a regular:

      “England: Do you want to run your own country Jock?
      Jocks: Naw, you just keep giving us English money and we’ll keep complaining about the SNP.”

    126. Valerie says:

      Croompenstein says:
      10 October, 2015 at 5:50 pm
      @Davy – Denseness and fuckwittery is rife in you. No one can deny this is true.. 😀

      You made me laugh, Croomp. I needed it, watching awful news from Ankara, of deaths and injured, at a peace rally.

      We live in a terrible world sometimes 🙁

    127. Kirsty says:

      Yesindyref2:

      I hope you win the lottery too, I also hope you’d share it with the rest of us! 😉 I hope that we can get rid of discrimination against women in my life time. I’m not a fan of quotas but as nothing else seems to have worked and no-one else seems to have any better ideas, I think we’re at the scraping the bottom of the barrel stage. Since we need to do something about it, then let’s at least give it a go and see if it makes a difference.

      I hope it does work, but I doubt it; I think gender discrimination runs far deeper and to solve it we therefore need to change attitudes at a far deeper level. But, maybe if people can see and get used to women being at the top levels of politics, it might roll down so to speak, and make a real difference not only in women’s willingness to get involved in politics but also in terms of work-life and home-life, etc.

      While we’re talking about discrimination, I’d also like to see us working on equal representation for people from all socio-economic backgrounds in politics. I’d also like to see men not be afraid to take their full paternity leave for fear of being seen as “not a company man” and therefore ripe for redundancy, etc. etc. This is a start, many people may feel it’s a shit start, maybe it is, but nothing else has got through. Let’s at least try. If it doesn’t work, I’d be the first person to want it stopped; there’s no point in exchanging one unfairness for another. But we can’t claim to be a progressive society when there is so much institutionalised unfairness so we need to try.

    128. Wee Alex says:

      @Davy

      In theory I’m one of the people who should be rushing back to the arms of the Labour Party. While never a member, I was daft enough to think that they believed in social justice. Then I found out about their holiday homes, share portfolios and nice wee earners from quango directorships.

      If you really believe there is cronyism in the SNP it pales into insignificance compared to the Labour Party. Knighthoods and gongs given to nonentities, directorships and well paid jobs to talentless party hacks. If that is socialism, I’ll eat my hat.

      If and when Corbyn reverses this, I’ll think again about the Labout Party, meanwhile I’m content to be a member of the SNP and push for independence from that pile of crap. Red Tories doesn’t describe them.

    129. Macart says:

      @Yesindyref2

      The DT Dads?

      I hope you had your shots before dipping in there. 🙂

      I used to visit and post on there a few years back…

      … I still have the nightmares.

      Barking bonkers for the most part.

    130. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      If I could repeat myself there would be no need for quotas if each constituency had a male contest and a female contest and elected one of each.
      If Scotland,say, had 50 constituencies each electing from a male list and a female list and the top up lists were in two gender groups as well we would have gender equality in Parliament.

      (I suppose it is just a matter of time before somebody asks about transgender opportunity!)

    131. Taranaich says:

      In retrospect, I might’ve been a bit saltier in my earlier post than I meant to. I think we’re all feeling some residual frustration and grumpiness regarding the sports events, even if we don’t follow sport.

      Think I’ll take a break too.

    132. Dr Jim says:

      @Davy

      Read this Davy son,

      This is an Independence forum, people have ideas, opinions, points of view, something to contribute to a conversation, whether everybody agrees or not is immaterial

      The point is we all want the same thing Independence for our country
      You, on the other hand do not wish or hope for any of these things because Davy you are a Fuckwit a Drone and a drain on the furtherance of humanity, now away and wave your Union Flag at somebody who’ll enjoy the experience

      I do hope you found this post useful and I will not reply again, one of you is enough in a day

    133. Dr Jim says:

      @ Robert Louis

      It’s great not to hear that phrase “Snatched defeat from the jaws of victory”
      I’m not a rugby guy, but who cares, we won at something that’ll do for me

    134. Morag says:

      Morag, you cant really compare the vet profession and Holyrood, in any way. Vets are competing for a tiny number of places and so are prospective MSP’s but not on how many Highers they get. If that makes sense.

      Or, a great vet and a great MSP are two very different er, trades.

      It was an example, to highlight the arithmetic. Highers or whatever it takes to impress a selection meeting, doesn’t matter.

    135. Betty Boop says:

      @ yesindyref2, 5:49pm

      @Betty Boop
      Had I been at that last conference say as a delegate, I would have voted violently against it. Now I’m not so sure.

      If I had to vote for it next appropriate conference, I’ve no idea which way I’d vote.

      The advantage of being at the conference is that you can listen to the entire debate. This one was the longest of the last conference. Well argued on both sides.

      If it came up at conference again, I don’t know which way I would vote and that is the point. It is intended for this election only to encourage branches to give women a hearing, otherwise it might never have happened.

    136. Robert Peffers says:

      @ArtyHetty says: 10 October, 2015 at 12:20 pm

      ” … But really why are we having to even have this discussion it’s 2015″

      The proper answer, ArtyHetty is because The Rev Stu is skiving off, (and I hope he has a nice day out), but I’m very much against any other criterion than simple suitability for the job of MP.

      As some of the wiser commenters have posted here, if the object is to attract females into active politic then the very best of ways to do this is to have genuine female roll models like perhaps Nicola Sturgeon herself doing the job she is doing so well and by her own, not her predecessors, high standards.

      It is just such as those standards that very probably brought Scottish politics such as the very obviously perfectly capable Mhairi Black.

      By the same token it is such as Johann Lamont, Kezia Dugdale and the, so very synthetic, Jackie Baillie who have put the recruitment of genuine honest female people in politic back so many long years.

      I mean, what kind of genuine up and coming young woman would aspire to become the next Nicola Sturgeon and which would aspire to be the next Jola, Kezia or Jackie Baillie?

      As to the lady, (sic), with the record for the biggest strapon in recent Scottish history it would be rather hard to imagine. She comes across almost as being as shaky as the old Crossroads Scenery and as sincere as the snake oil salesmen of the old USAsian Wilde West.

      There are many ladies out there in politics who would be a credit no matter what career they chose and there are some who would discredit even being a good fishwife.

    137. mogabee says:

      Just a little dip back in..

      The last time this was debated on here it became so heated with some verging on the aggressive.

      This time though feels less antagonistic and I wonder if folk have had more time to consider the possibilities and decided it may not be such a bad idea after all!

      Carry on as you were…:D

    138. Cadogan Enright says:

      I don’t mind if there are quotas for female politicians until we reach a reasonable level of balance, so long as they select committed, able and knowledgable women.

      As a male in my 50’s who got elected by sheer hard work and native ability, I know that it’s committed male politicians that like me that would be discriminated against in this scenario and I know how hard that would be to take if you were de-selected in favour of a young woman in her 20’s who could never have broken through in the tough times.

      In my view this is best done in a PR election where there are several potential seats to be won – and you make sure that your tough male elder lemons can also have at least one of them, while giving 5 years to a novice female or 2 so they can get 5 years experience and learn how to street fight at local gov level. I’d say Westminister is the best place for quotas as the skills needed there are different to local government. However the Scottish Parliament in my opinion should be selected primarily on raw ability regardless of gender as Soctland needs the best of all genders to build its future.

      My only precondition would be that they will pay no Heed whatsoever to feelings of cultural self-hate emanating from Bath from some folk unfamiliar with international norms and human rights and without the wit to listen to others who know what they are talking about

    139. arthur thomson says:

      If Nicola Sturgeon and a majority of other women in the SNP are in favour of quotas then I support that point of view.

    140. Angra Mainyu says:

      i have mixed feelings about women in politics. We let one of them into our chess club and she hammered everybody.

      Is there any scope for a short list that gives fat, middle-aged, thick guys a place at the table?

      Just asking….

    141. yesindyref2 says:

      @Kirsty
      The amount of misogyny I still see around, e.g. forums, is frightening. Not talking about here, I don’t think any comments were misogynystic, just humorous!

      It does seem to be more us old ones, so I guess it’ll die out in a generation or so. The young people I meet seem to be nearly bereft of it, not even really “woman driver”. No wonder about the last one by the way, I was struck and dismayed (as a mere man) in the naughties that the faster and more confident drivers seemed to be young women. Maybe that’s just where I live.

      @Betty Boop
      Yes, it has aired the issue more, and probably at least made SNP members think and perhaps change their minds.

    142. yesindyref2 says:

      @Dave McEwan Hill
      I like the idea of having perhaps double constituencies returning two MSPs, one of each gender for the whole contituency. That’d be a fair way of doing it. I’ve forgotten, but I think maybe the new Scotland Act gives powers over the Holyrood elections to the SG.

    143. CameronB Brodie says:

      Cadogan Enright
      We live and learn, hopefully. 😉

    144. heedtracker says:

      Morag, It was an example, to highlight the arithmetic. Highers or whatever it takes to impress a selection meeting, doesn’t matter

      It was actually this what you wrote, gender blind selection, is interesting.

      “The universities are receiving applications for places in the veterinary courses skewed 4 to 1 in favour of women. So, since the selection procedures are gender-blind, 80% of the intake are female.”

      Does that mean the names of all prospective vet students are blocked and no interviews are held by vet schools?

      If so, how can you know who would be a good vet without interviews or is it only on Higher results and references?

      If you can choose the best vets gender blind and get 80% women vets…

    145. Croompenstein says:

      Bring on Australia… I love their national anthem.. 😀

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-jWIBRRRdA

    146. kestral says:

      OK

      lets get something straight here people

      woman and men ARE different…….and instead of trying to make them the same…….why not rejoice AND appreciate the difference

      as a former building control officer who had to go out in the cold and the mud of building sites I truly appreciate and love the difference between man and woman

      I am now a computer programmer – have never once been discriminated against in my career

      but guess what I DON’T want to be the CEO of my company – ps that is a woman at the moment……she does not have time to have a child, she spends a lot of time making hard ruthless choices I am soooooo happy I never need to make

      I want to be a woman……….I want to be different to a man…..I want to respect them for their strengths ….just as I want to be respected for my strengths

      that does not mean I want to do the things they do…….We need to learn to respect what each of the sexes are good at…..not make it a war over us doing their jobs

      because I can tell you right now trudging through a cold wet building site in the middle of december is something I respect men for, having done it myself, but I would rather leave it to them and have them appreciate me for the things I can do well as a woman

      I don’t require equality……..that I must be able to do their job….BECAUSE I SO DON’T WANT TOO…. I require respect for both sides and the unique strengths we can both bring to the equation

      so no wonder stu has pissed off for the day……as a woman so would I if these roles were reversed

    147. K1 says:

      I agree mogabee, compared to the last outing of this subject on Wings, this has been very mature today…it’s very heartening…

      I don’t generally watch sport, ‘cept tennis occasionally, but I’m delighted for our rugby team in getting through to the QF’s, good on them. I hope we thrash Australia (I know, terribly partisan of me), if only to wipe the smugness off the faces of some of the commenters from under some Guardian articles on the Scotland result today. That would be a ‘satisfying’ win for me… 😉

    148. Croompenstein says:

      We can but dream.. they did lead briefly 🙂

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4paLVu0gNcQ

    149. yesindyref2 says:

      Ah rugby again. Unsung hero, shhh, someone who could have been yellow-carded for preventing a possible end to end touchline try with a deliberate knock-on, shhh, not telling you who. Don’t tell then your name Hogg.

    150. Valerie says:

      Cadogan Enright @ 7.49

      Excellent post, you have said it so much more eloquently than I ever could.

    151. Betty Boop says:

      @ Ruby, 5:58pm
      Did you order the wine with your home delivered meal? 🙂 enjoy!

      @ mogabee, 7:48pm
      Agreed. Compared to the last time, this is a good discussion.

      @ Dr Jim, 7:11pm
      Correct, we all have differing views and are willing to debate. As commented to mogabee, enjoying the discussion – must be evolving, eh?

      @Thepnr, 2:11pm
      I’m proud of you ;-), always willing to re-consider your opinions. Respect.

      @Truth
      I see no “misguided feminists” here.

    152. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      Just popping in to say that any comments using the words “privilege” or “feminazi” have and will be either rejected or deleted when discovered. Seriously, fuck off with that shit, people.

    153. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Croompenstein at 8.16

      Actually the w*nkers chose the pompous and boring “Rise Australia Fair” (which had the same tune as the Nigerian national anthem at that time) instead of Waltzing Matilda. I’ve had little time for Australians since.

    154. Gavin says:

      A big “Well Done” ! to the Scotland rugby team today. A bit nervy at times but they got the job done. Laidlaw clearly the best Scotland player on the park. After Thursday’s footy disappointment its great to have something to smile about. Reaching the last eight is a great achievement and is all the more satisfying as a certain host nation went out with a game to spare !

      I’m off to celebrate with a couple of beers at my local rugby club.

      Bring on the wallabies. Come on Scotland !

    155. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “A bit nervy at times”

      Surface of the Sun “a bit hot”.

    156. RUBY says:

      Betty Boop says:
      10 October, 2015 at 8:51 pm

      @ Ruby, 5:58pm
      Did you order the wine with your home delivered meal? 🙂 enjoy!

      Ruby Replies:

      Yes I got the wine, the San Miquel and some ‘Crayfish & rocket’ snackettes so I’m feeling good and currently trying to track down the posts containing the term feminazi & all that shit!

    157. Dave says:

      29% in Westminister,35% at Holyrood. The stats speak for themselves,we have to take positive action, temporarily, to address this.

    158. Ruby says:

      When men start talking about sport I’m more than happy to join ‘the girls’ in the kitchen to do the clearing up while ‘the boys’ retire to the lounge to drink port and smoke cigars.

      This sport talk is like a foreign language! I wonder if Google translate might be able to help?

    159. Croompenstein says:

      or “feminazi”

      Ze towzel zat iz juzt obeying orderzzz.. 🙂

    160. Bob Mack says:

      @shiregirl,

      Do you as a nurse become the centre of focused publicity? Probably not.

      Do you as a mother and wife have round the clock scrutiny of your reasons for doing anything,? Probably not.

      Being a politician is more life changing than anything you could imagine,and also affects your family. I myself worked in Health,therefore know the daily pressures and events that affect health professionals.
      However,I was not subject to daily abuse from media or had my family intimidated for their parentage.
      if elected for Westminster you are away Sunday till Friday.Not ideal for a young family.
      My cousin was an MP,and accepted that this was part of the price of the job.He was male. He also suffered from most of the things I have mentioned earlier.

      Stating that women have ability is not patronising but is rather recognition of fact. There is a difference. My own wife could outdo any man at most things. She has ability you see.

    161. heedtracker says:

      Davy says:
      10 October, 2015 at 5:42 pm
      It dosent matter what sex they are. They will only get a job if there mates or family are in the party. Cronyism and nepotism is rife in the SNP. No one can deny this is true.

      Hi Davy, are you giving us a newsroom listen in on today’s BBC Scotland news brainstorming sessions, chaired by Glenn “weird voice” Campbell?

      Its a serious question Davy. I’m not kidding but I really wish I was.

    162. Lollysmum says:

      I have to say that I was one of those against quotas because I see them used in Health & Social Care situations where some people get hurt where they are involved in a quota for a mental health project for example -usually where they’ve been pushed into it but can’t cope with the pressures that brings.

      However since the last outing of this subject, I realised that my view was perhaps too narrow so I’ve read around the subject since & I have to say that yes it is time for quotas-not just in politics but also in the judiciary, in business, in health boards & a whole raft of different areas.

      It’s 100 years since women got the vote in UK but how far have we come since then? Not a huge distance I’d say.

      I am CEO of a charity in London & when I used to attend interviews for CEO posts I could select the candidate who would be offered the post before all the interviews had even taken place. Without exception they were all male, stale & pale candidates who fitted into the Board’s ideas of what a CEO should look & sound like.

      I decided to fight back so in my next interview I started off by saying- I am not middle class, not male, didn’t go to Oxbridge, I speak with a Midlands accent which I’m not prepared to lose to please anyone. I am passionate about what I do & don’t suffer fools gladly so I’d appreciate it if they wouldn’t waste my time by going through the motions of interviewing me if I didn’t fit their CEO template.

      After a couple of minutes stunned silence one of the Board members said “I like your plain speaking & I’d like to carry on with this interview” & we did. By the end of the day, I’d been offerred the post.

      That was the day before the Aldgate bomb went off in 2005 & I’m still there 10 years later. When I broached the subject 2 years ago for my plans to retire they guilt tripped me into staying on for an extra 2 years-so I will retire at 65 currently exactly the same as a man.

      I should not have had to be assertive but I did & it worked however I appreciate that it was my years as a police officer that taught me that. Not my education, nor my upbringing or the community I lived in. Just life experience & not being willing to take any more crap from anyone.

      Unfortunately others are not so lucky or feel able to tackle a situation like that head on. I hate the Old Boys Network which perpetuates the myth that women can’t do as good a job as a man. They can & do where there is an element of enlightenment but you still have to fight for it even in 2015.

      And to Davy who talked about nepotism-have you ever considered that it might be because those people who succeed is because they’ve been brought up in political families so they know the pitfalls from an early age & still put themselves forward. Forewarned is forearmed so they say!

      Even Mhairi Black had to be pushed by her friends to put her name forward because no one else would volunteer-that is just one example of how reluctant some women can be about entering politics & look how well that turned out 🙂 Hopefully, she will be a role model for others just as Nicola is now. Time will tell.

      Sorry for the length of this post.

    163. Cadogan Enright says:

      @Daisy Walker 3.37

      Excellent post – in such a culture quotas might be less needed.

    164. cearc says:

      Indigo (and I think someone else as well but I can’t find the comment now) made a very good point about meeting times and places.

      Weekday evening meetings exclude not just mums but anyone who doesn’t have a 9-5 job, control over their working hours or evening commitments. Surely varying them would enable a much wider range of people to be involved.

      The indyref campaign where people did what they could, when they could, gave prominence to a lot of new people who have gone on to stand for election but they may not have been able to ‘qualify’ via years of ‘tuesday night meets at the pig and thistle’ because of work or home commitments.

      On the topic, personally, I find ‘all women lists’ totally unacceptable. Aiming for gender balance is obviously desirable but I think compulsory quotas shouldn’t be more than about 35% to avoid loosing good people on the grounds of them having the wrong sort of dangly bits.

      It is equal opportunity and access that are key factors.

    165. caz-m says:

      My First Minister is Nicola Sturgeon, my MP is Mhairi Black and I have just voted for Tracie McGee to become my MSP in next years Holyrood election.

      I have campaigned for all three and I have 100% faith in their ability to lead us to victory in our fight for Scottish Independence.

    166. cearc says:

      Lollysmum,

      Wonderful! I could almost hear you delivering that little speech and the respondent silence.

    167. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Marcia –

      🙂

    168. Croompenstein says:

      FFS Wales go through despite losing.. congrats to Wales but FFS

    169. Early Ball says:

      Scotland’s sporting week has ended on a great note. Robert Thornton just won the darts World Grand Prix beating the world no 1 MVG in the final. Happy day.

    170. Dr Jim says:

      Still haven’t changed my mind about quotas but as I said if the FM (praise her name) thinks it’s a good idea then I support her so I’ll support that and vote with her

      But if it bites her back by bringing in less capable folk then I’ll shout as loud as I can “I told you so” and vote against it happening again

      That seems fair to me

    171. Colin Dunn says:

      If quotas are the way to go (and I don’t believe they are), then they need to be applied in ALL professions, not just the prestigious ‘plum’ careers. Otherwise the process will totally lack credibility. Lorry drivers, farmers, nurses, teachers, cleaners, doctors, road diggers, train driver, police, etc – if it makes sense to use quotas for MPs then it makes sense for other professions too.

    172. CameronB Brodie says:

      “in England, a supine bourgeoisie produced a
      subordinate proletariat.” – Perry Anderson

      I’m not posting that simply to be inflammatory, I think it is one of the main reasons the ‘old-boy network’ survives into the 21st century. I thought change normally comes from below.

      In contrast to continental Europe, has Britain’s Establishment managed to dominate the ‘working-class’ so absolutely, as a result of Britain’s industrial revolution proceeding the evolution of developed socialist theory?

    173. heedtracker says:

      If quotas are the way to go (and I don’t believe they are), then they need to be applied in ALL professions, not just the prestigious ‘plum’ careers

      There are jobs women cannot do, like

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YPKMn28gvxw

    174. Cadogan Enright says:

      Ahhh! But Ireland qualified first c:

    175. Betty Boop says:

      @ Dr Jim,.10:21pm

      Has it taken you all day to come to that conclusion, Dr Jim? Here I was thinking you were debating with all and sundry and it turns out you were having a wee chat to yourself. 🙂

      You can rest happy tonight.

      @ Lollysmum

      One of the most intelligent posts today. I think Lollysmum has evolved, Dr Jim ! 🙂

    176. Davy says:

      @ Heedtracker

      I truly have no idea what you are asking me. Is this a programme coming on the telly or the radio sometime ? Should I be listening to this for information ? I never really watch the telly.

    177. Achnababan says:

      Qoutas are clumsy and sometimes unworkable. I would prefer a more flexible mechanism that actually deals with the drivers behind gender imbalance in all professions.

      What about quotas for people who did not go to private school in the army, judiciary, civil service? Now I would sign up for that!!

    178. Hoss Mackintosh says:

      @Marcia,

      Nice one by the Sunday Herald.

      Hopefully, that will kill off that daft T in the Park smear campaign once and for all.

      Mind you Kez and Co will probably still run with it aided by their little BBC helpers?

    179. Albamac says:

      @shiregirl

      I also run a home, take care of the kids and my partner and all the other things that go with it.

      I’ve done that.

      I also study in my own time

      Did that, too.

      You try fitting all that running a house, kids and keeping a job going, keeping to a budget, etc

      Ditto, although I no longer have a job and the kids have flown the nest.

      All of this begs a few questions, though.

      1. Do you think that all men abandon responsibility for the upbringing of their children?
      2. Why is running the house and keeping to a budget your responsibility?
      3. If all of the above is true, what function does your ‘partner’ serve?

    180. Grouse Beater says:

      Cameron: In contrast to continental Europe, how has Britain’s Establishment managed to dominate the ‘working-class’ so absolutely

      Their tools are the wrack and the screw:. http://wp.me/p4fd9j-2a4

    181. caz-m says:

      After reading tomorrow’s Sunday Herald,

      Monday’s “National” front page headlines will say:

      “Scottish Labour Party involved in mass hanging”

    182. Chic McGregor says:

      Politics and democracy are a special case. There is a fundamental rightness that all identifiable groupings be properly represented. Even if they do not particularly want to be.

      Women make up 50% of the population therefore they should be adequately represented. No question.

      However there remains a question over whether a man can or cannot represent female interests and vice versa.

      In particular I refer to the perceived phenomena that some women seem themselves to have a preference for voting for men.

    183. Achnababan says:

      The Ref at the rugby today had me baffled.

      IMHO:

      1. The Samoan who illegally held on to Laidlaw’s arm should have been yellow carded for a professional foul.

      2. While Reid had to go to the sin bin surely the Samoan who was lying on the ground and held on to him illegally to prevent him joining play should have been yellow-carded?

      3. Samoans gave away lots of penalties to stop us scorong so why no yellows?

      Does rugby not recognise the ‘professional foul’ becasue only soccer louts do that I suppose ….

    184. heedtracker says:

      @ Davy, pretty lame. Anyway who is related to who in the SNP? other than FM Sturgeon and her husband, who’s not in an elected job anyway?

    185. Croompenstein says:

      @Cadogan – Ahhh! But Ireland qualified first

      Aye ma Granny used to talk about the luck o’ the Irish.. 🙂

    186. Cadogan Enright says:

      I have had the benefit of watching female quotas being rolled out in Irish political parties for many years past and have seen the benefits and the pitfalls

      This is a difficult subject, fraught with the dangers of PC minefields for a minor politician like myself.

      As one of a tiny number of environmentalists elected in N.Ireland, I have see the positive and negative impact of the roll-out of positive discrimination on the other politicians around me first hand. Especially in the SDLP and Sinn Féin – Unionists don’t seem to go in for it – their women where they exist are in the Thatcher mould of feminism.

      It can be very blunt instrument if not used intelligently

      On the positive side I have seen Sinn Féin in particular ruthlessly promote women and it seems to work especially well in multi-seat constituencies where they are the dominant party and are dividing up the votes between the various candidates and the ‘vote leader’ has several quotas. This has enabled SF to bring in serious thinkers and academics into their ranks and as Ministers and be promoted upwards to MEP’s like Barbre De Bruin was.

      But seems to be most ineffective where they are just less than a single quota or in a first past the post situation where victory is not assured and the party machine is not overwhelmingly strong. In these cases the smart thing to do is to pick the on-the-ground fighter with the best chance of winning the seat regardless of gender.

      Positive discrimination damaged SF even to the point of alienating activists in constituencies where male working-class activists have built up a vote over many years – only to have the seat snatched from them at the constituency after 20/30 years work. Witness the likes of Christy Burke in Dublin – or Keogh in the same constituency from whence SF has developed their likely future female leader McDonald.

      However, pursued relentlessly over the years, this policy does serve to redress the traditional balance of men v’s women that plagued SF down though the years.

      One can argue that there is no gain without pain. Anyone who has followed the subsequent stellar career of McDonald in Dublin can see that the SF leadership were probably right to over-ride the particular concerns of that constituency even though they may have secured the seat quicker with the male working class candidate.

      In my area, which is not a SF stronghold. They selected a young inexperienced female candidate to jointly run with their local vote leader in preference to a well-known sitting councillor and postman last May. This probably resulted in failing to win the fifth seat when my area was reduced from seven seats to five seats at the last election in May 2014.

      Their tally showed the number of expected SF votes did not increase as the candidate was not from the area and women voters did not flock to support the new candidate even though she was the only woman running. Their tally showed they were just under two quotas. The subsequent need to divide out the first preferences likely to be available resulted in their star candidate being knocked out.

      While I would like to think they would have knocked out the trailing SDLP candidate had they done things differently, in truth my being re-elected again last May was the result of a botched exercise in positive discrimination in SF.

      While SF are the largest party in my Council area – one could argue that they would be in a more commanding lead had they not embarked on the policy of positive discrimination.

      It remains to be seen of the pain of implementing this policy in my area will be rewarded by a stellar rise in the new young female candidate in the same manner as McDonald in Dublin. They had many other excellent women candidates elected locally – but these were mainly in their stronghold areas where they have multiple seats and local dominance.

      Overall, I think it is the right policy – but it needs to be done without the benefit of a blunt instrument that would prevent the party from tapping its best human resources.

    187. mealer says:

      Quotas to promote gender balance in parliament? I think if we introduce them,it won’t be long before we don’t need them.

    188. CameronB Brodie says:

      Grouse Beater
      In a metaphoric game of stone, paper, scissors, coercive force loses to the idea, which loses to technology, which loses to coercive force. I just thought that up, so I’m not entirely certain. ;).

    189. One_Scot says:

      Do I agree with quotas, probably not. Do I think there are enough people kicking the SNP in the nuts, probably yes.

    190. Macart says:

      @Marcia

      OOFT and Oh Dang! 😀

    191. Capella says:

      @ Lollysmum

      Great post. I remember that last time this came up you were very much in favour of the success through “merit” argument. But, as you point out, it is obvious that there is another factor in play when it comes to achieving influential positions in society.

      Let’s hope Nicola’s initiative changes the zietgeist in Scotland for the better.

    192. yesindyref2 says:

      @Ruby
      Rugby’s a very easy sport. Someone kicks the ball and the people try to cacth it but usually don’t. Then someone picks it up and throws it at you and you try to catch this wet, muddy slippery and strange shaped object spininning end over end. Usually you drop it and everyone swears at you.

      But sometimes you catch it and jump up and down with excitement. You’ve won the game! Then a couple of people in different coloured muddy shirts to you jump on top of you and start kicking and punching you. Then a couple with the same colour shirt also jump on top, and others join in trying to push you all along the ground. You punch, kick and bite anyone you can while holding on to the ball.

      After a time this guy blows the whistle and runs up to you saying “you were holding on”. You’re so proud! As a reward he gives you a shiny yellow card and sends you off to have a well-earned 10 minute break.

      I’ve never understood why he wants his yellow card back.

    193. Problem solved as I have just been asked to remove large spider on celling from above toilet by partner, task speedily undertaken with no participants no matter how willing or unwilling the participants were were harmed in this exercise.

      Who would make the best politician the one who removed the said offensive/obnoxious animal or the potential animal executioner?

      Debate as you like but women only lists are discrimination at its worst and only affirms that class is a justified position in society.

      ps I have only skimmed down the posts so haven’t read them all.

    194. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      yesindyref2 at 8.07

      Thanks. Seems like a perfectly sensible and non contentious method to me.

    195. Gary McIlkenny says:

      I don’t agree with quotas and, of course, merit should be the deciding factor.

      Mhairi Black is my MP and I’m very glad she is too. Presumably she got selected and elected without the need for any artificial help.

      Lamont, Dugdale and Baillie are all prize numpties and god knows how they got where they are.

      Anyway, Nicola obviously has a bee in her bonnet about this issue. Well, it’s her job to take decisions live with the consequences.

    196. Capella says:

      O/T
      And so it begins. Warmongers R Us sez Labour:

      At least 50 Labour MPs are prepared to defy Jeremy Corbyn by backing military action to protect civilians in Syria, it has emerged, as cross-party support grows for a new and comprehensive strategy to end the crisis.”

      https://archive.is/ue0YM

    197. Angra Mainyu says:

      Cynicalhighlander, do you really believe “women only lists are discrimination at its worst”?

      So, lynching “niggers”, sectarian violence, bigotry, segregation, apartheid, etc., none of those are as bad as women only lists?

      Worth remembering that women only lists are a means to an noble end — gender equality which, left to natural forces, doesn’t seem likely in any of our life times.

      Anyway, was your little story about the spider supposed to validate some notion that women are inferior and incapable when it comes to certain scenarios? I know plenty of men who don’t like spiders, myself included.

      Interesting that the logic of arguments against women only lists could just as easily be deployed against things like the minimum wage and other social interventions aimed at addressing wrongs and imbalances.

    198. K1 says:

      For anyone who hasn’t seen Nicola at the Women In the World event, well worth seeing:

      http://nytlive.nytimes.com/womenintheworld/2015/10/08/nicola-sturgeon-is-on-a-mission-to-redefine-domestic-violence/

    199. Robert Peffers says:

      @Morag says: 10 October, 2015 at 4:19 pm:

      ” … It’s a simple fact that some professions and occupations are more attractive to women, and some less. If you have a system based purely on merit, and the average merit of male and female applicants is equivalent, then you will end up with a gender balance that reflects the gender distribution in the applicant pool.”

      Aye! Morag, but on that score I had quite a few cases to help fight for males attempting to break into female dominated work.

      Nursing even as that was almost exclusive to females. Midwifery, Care assistants, Child Minders and several other aspects back then when the females were making big efforts to break into male dominated jobs the most militant females were the very ones most opposed to males moving the other way.

    200. liz says:

      O/T If you don’t want your blood pressure going through the roof, don’t read KMcKs latest explosion in the Observer.

      He’s back to the bad old days, SNP not just bad but filled with scandal and incompetence.

      I for one will not be adding to his click bait article.

    201. K1 says:

      Clearly some ‘hacks’ think it’s back to ‘business as usual’ liz. How wrong they are. Thanks for the heads up.

    202. Tackety Beets says:

      Twitter feed suggesting Nicola On Marr in the morning .

    203. Paula Rose says:

      Whatever your background – you can represent your people.

    204. @Angra Mainyu says:

      Cynicalhighlander, do you really believe “women only lists are discrimination at its worst”?

      So, lynching “niggers”, sectarian violence, bigotry, segregation, apartheid, etc., none of those are as bad as women only lists?

      Eh? I don’t follow that analogy whatsoever when elections are supposed to be a peaceful action not one of violence.

      What is the one most single overriding attribute that one wishes all politicians come to the table with ?

      Mine is integrity, not gender specific, because if that is missing then they are wasting my and everyone else’s time as they can be bought.

    205. Capella says:

      @ Gary McIlkenny
      It’s not a meritocracy if you can buy it. Eton and Oxbridge cost a fortune but guarantee you a lucrative future making all the decisions. That is plutocracy. Let’s work for a more egalitarian society.

    206. Angra Mainyu says:

      CynicalHighlander

      It used to annoy me to see people getting caught up in silly little notional nuances, now I just find it a great source of free entertainment.

      I’m compelled to point out — going through the motions etc. — that integrity more or less means nothing. Taken it to extremes, I’m sure many millions thought that Hitler, Genghis Khan, and Pol Pot amongst others had integrity. That makes it a silly word and anyone that hangs their jacket on a silly word simply must be a silly person.

      The society we inherited has its roots in a million injustices. It’s our intellectual responsibility to address those injustice and correct the imbalances they caused. The ultimate te goal is to create a society fit for our kids to live in and if that means women only lists then who cares? As long as we get where we want to be going.

      Anyway, this issue goes beyond politics. All jobs should be subject to short lists, starting at the top, and we should impose gender equality in employment across the board. Additionally, wages need to be equalised too so that all women get paid the same as men, etc.

      Anyone who disagrees is a dinosaurus…

    207. Onwards says:

      One_Scot says:
      10 October, 2015 at 11:37 pm
      Do I agree with quotas, probably not. Do I think there are enough people kicking the SNP in the nuts, probably yes.
      —-
      yeah, my thoughts too.
      I don’t like it in principle, but could tolerate them in the short term, bearing in mind there could possibly be a political advantage.. or at least avoiding a potential political disadvantage if the female MP/MSP ratio dropped below an ‘acceptable’ level. Big picture in mind.

      I would also like to think someone of the calibre of Nicola Sturgeon would always make her way to the front without a helping hand along the way.

    208. yesindyref2 says:

      OT
      A better Sunday Herald, but I’m still reserving judgement after its HoF huffy fit. I was there and I’m SNP, not Solidarity (now called Hope Over Fear), RISE or SSP. I was there to support Independence, Hutcheons was there to screw Sheridan over. Again.

      But this caught my eye in an article on the Greens:

      “GREEN MSPs would not automatically vote for a second referendum in a hung parliament, despite the party advocating independence, it emerged yesterday. “

      Which, if true and who knows with the SH, confirms what some of us thought. They’d want, it seems, to get support via a public petition. This is interesting also though:

      “Under an EU Citizens’ Initiative, 1m signatures on a petition can trigger new legislation.”

    209. yesindyref2 says:

      It’s been said by Wingers, but worth saying again. That we need to watch out for hostile attempts to drive wedges between the different parts of the Independence Movement. That’s a bit relevant to the SH, perhaps, who knows.

    210. heedtracker says:

      http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/oct/11/scandal-and-incompetence-stalk-snp

      Scotland does not exist, SNP bad, another day in teamGB media land. Fair play to these gits, they do have an amazing scoop about an Edinburgh MP called Thompson in some sort of finance scandal shock. Could be just the thing to bring down Scottish government.

      Desperate and angry, Libby Carrell begs Scotland to vote anyone but SNP, shock.

    211. galamcennalath says:

      Re Michelle Thomson, the next large scale opinion poll should be interesting.

      My prediction? The deluge of shit from the CorpM and EBC will be seen for what it is, mud slinging propaganda, by Yes supporters. It won’t make much difference.

    212. Ken500 says:

      Kevin’s in cockoo land again. Delusional. The Oxford graduate mess. The non Dom tax evading Press. The SNP are still heads and shoulders above the rest.

    213. Socrates MacSporran says:

      I fear Blow Job, McAveety and Co have cornered Kevin McKenna in the corporate toilets at Celtic Park and “had a word”.

      His Observer piece this morning is, even by his low standards, a disgrace – he has definitely gone home to SLAB.

      yesindyref2 – Your piece at 11.49pm is not a description of a rugby match, but, does look rather like a report what I wrote of an Auchinleck Talbot v Cumnock football match back in the 1980s.

    214. Tackety Beets says:

      Thanks for ruining my Sunday heedtracker , I made the mistake of reading your link on 7.51am post.

      What a load o bollo@ these papers write .

      What struck me most was the blaming of the SNP for hounding Henry MacLeish oot o office. The article has link , which normally verifies a claim, which disnae even have the letters SNP in the page.

      Nicola on Marr shortly , hopefully brighten our day .

    215. mealer says:

      Indyref2 11.49,
      Wonderful piece of writing which really needs expanding upon.Great way to start the day,cheers!

    216. Thepnr says:

      I also read that McKenna piece online this morning. Pathetic, laughable even pitiful.

      Somebody must be prodding him with a stick.

    217. heedtracker says:

      Tackety Beets says:
      11 October, 2015 at 8:51 am
      Thanks for ruining my Sunday heedtracker , I made the mistake of reading your link on 7.51am post.

      You’re welcome! Its a red and blue toryboy Britnat world and they want their Scotland region back, pronto, yesterday, next May even.

      If all they have is their on going monstering of Michellw Thompson, albeit extremely creepy monstering of her but even so, next May should be fine.

      Rancid the Graun’s just another pack of sneery liars and hypocrites like all the rest, or great British journalists at their finest. Its up to Scotland now, and even that’s a choice rancid The Graun in particular really detests.

      http://wingsoverscotland.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/salmondbell.jpg

    218. Macart says:

      I haven’t read the McKenna piece, but can’t say I’m surprised. He’s never been comfy with Labour’s loss of grace in the world and I think you’ll find that in Kevin’s world it should be Labour leading the way in Scotland’s political reawakening.

      He is who he is and his Scotland no longer exists. He’s a commentator as enclosed in the media bubble as any in the big titles.

      In short, ignore the media, the commentators and assorted punditry and lets just do our own thing. If they’re not part of the solution, they’re part of the problem. We’ve got work to do which they are no part of and at the end of the day they are simply observers. (see whit ah did there) 🙂

    219. caz-m says:

      A couple of days ago I included Kevin McKenna on a list of Unionist journalists who are too cosy with Scottish Labour.

      There was a couple on here who took exception to that view and stuck up for Kevin McKenna.

      Dave McEwan Hill says:

      8 October, 2015 at 12:21 am

      “Whit????”

      “Have you actually read anything Kevin McKenna has written over the past eighteen months?”

      yesindyref2 says:

      8 October, 2015 at 1:30am

      “I read all McKenna 2-3 years ago, when he was going through his stage of realising Labour wasn’t the Labour he wanted or supported, and that definitely is unfair to him.”

      Here’s a question for Dave McEwan Hill AND yesindyref2.

      After reading what Kevin McKenna wrote this morning in the Guardian, do you two still stand by what you wrote?

      Can someone please archive the McKenna story below,

      http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/oct/11/scandal-and-incompetence-stalk-snp

    220. Tinto Chiel says:

      Taranaich said up the thread he was taking a break and I have decided to take a permanent one. An exchange of views with another contributor has meant I don’t find posting as enjoyable as before so I’m hanging up the laptop. Before I do can I thank in particular (too many others to mention):

      Taranaich (who probably won’t see this), for all his wise words; Macart, for his socialist idealism; Capella and Fiona for their well-judged posts; Mr Peffers for all his erudition regarding The British Question; John King for his early-morning bulletins, which I’ll miss, and BrianDTT for his mad musical interventions and Dundonianness. Oh, and Paula Rose and her finely-turned ankles.

      Mustn’t forget Nana and her wonderful links. I hope you’re passing on the Gaelic to someone; heed tracker and his Rancid Graun riffs and Socrates MacSporran for his immortal Jackie Baillie joke. And Lochside, I hope you continue with your research.

      Finally, Ronnie Anderson, a big man in every sense whose food bank work makes such a difference to people’s lives and of course, the Rev, a one man independence army without whom, imo, we would have got nowhere near 45%. Thanks for reading all the corporate media rubbish so we don’t have to. I don’t know how you do it.

      That’s all folks.

    221. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      caz-m at 9.44

      Yes.
      He is lifelong Labour but he supported independence continuously for the whole of the referendum campaign.
      Like Sir Charles Gray, Alex Mosson and many others who remain in Labour.

    222. heedtracker says:

      There was a couple on here who took exception to that view and stuck up for Kevin McKenna.

      He’s had a wee lookee at balanced and fair and probably had a lovely time. Next May elections in Scotland are an extraordinary milestone towards mature self governance at Holyrood and Scottish democratic progress. So they’ve all UKOK shat themselves with the realisation.

      Some rule Britannia Britnats freak out over possible Brexit and how that could really be the end of 600 English MP’s deciding all the big stuff for their Scotland region. Its far far more than that though and that’s why they’ve dropped any and all pretence.

    223. Valerie says:

      Wow at Kevin McKenna piece, however I cheered a bit reading just a few comments btl, and some really good commentators putting that cringing balloon in his place, backed with fact.

      McKenna could make all his points, without the dripping bile injected, but that would be no fun.

      On the positive side, I thought Andrew Marr was very fair in his interview with the FM.

      I hope those who are leaving or taking a break will return. I don’t always agree with folk here, and after the last debacle on the quotas issue, I made a deliberate decision not to take part in this discussion.

      However, I try to always keep an open mind, and its good to read opinions that don’t chime with your own.

    224. Robert Peffers says:

      @Caesar!mac says: 10 October, 2015 at 10:49 pm:

      ” … also run a home, take care of the kids and my partner and all the other things that go with it.

      I’ve done that.

      Yes! Caesar!mac – Me too. My first wife died and left me with a babe in arms and an adopted boy. This was back in the days when there was a widows pension but no widowers pension. In fact when pressure was applied to force a single father to put his family into care. Then my second wife ended up in a wheelchair and I ended up working full time and caring for her too, but let’s not confuse the issue with facts, shall we?

      These matters cut two ways – not so’s you’d notice sometimes. I’ll say it again – the big fact is that any form of selective lists risks the chance of the discriminated against group or groups falling through the net and the standards intended for the post degraded.

      What if such as say, Stewart Hosie had been discriminated against as a candidate by a Woman only list. The phrase baby and bathwater comes to mind.

      There can logically only be one criterion to select the best candidate for the job and that criterion is to select the best candidate for the job.

      The glaringly obvious fact is that a selective list is active discrimination and you just do not redress the glaring wrong of female positive discrimination with the equally glaring wrong of male positive discrimination.

      It may not seem clear to some but the correct way to redress the wrong is to diagnose the cause and attack that. So what is the cause? Is it that the males are actively excluding the females or is it that females of equal ability are not coming forward for consideration?

      If it is the first cause then address this by ONLY correcting those males who are discriminating against female candidates and if it is the second then remove the apparent barriers that discourage able females from standing as candidates on an equal footing.

      May I point out that SNP history has been amply led by some of the most able female political figures it has been my privilege, (sorry Rev Stu), to have met, listened too and known.

      Not only that but the present crop of very able ladies now upholding that SNP tradition are impressively showing the correct way to redress the gender imbalance is by holding up the shining examples of the past and present.

      Ms Black has done much more in a short time to redress the balance than any discriminatory selective list ever has or will.

    225. Sinky says:

      Re Sunday Times barrel scrapping front page story on Michelle Thomson making farcical link thanks to a die hard unionist Kevin Hague of M8 Group, ScotlaninUnion, Chokkablog writing to Electoral Commission claiming SNP overspent in Referendum Campaign.

      What price can be put on the British Civil Service including The Treasury whose most senior civil servant at the Treasury defended his decision to interfere in the referendum campaign?

      Imagine the banner headlines and media outcry if the UK Treasury interfered in the EU referendum but not a cheep whilst they did so last year.

    226. caz-m says:

      Kevin McKenna has been given a choice by Kezia Dugdale.

      She has told him that if he wants to be welcomed back into the Scottish Labour Party fold, then he has to prove it in the words that he writes.

      And boy is he proving it.

      Brian Wilson or Kevin McKenna, can you tell the difference?

    227. Democracy Reborn says:

      The McKenna piece in today’s Observer is being ripped to pieces in the BTL comments.

      I’ve finally lost whatever respect I had for him pre-referendum. Kevin is indeed a skilled journalist : skilled in repeatedly making bald, vacuous assertions masquerading as ‘facts’.

      He has excelled himself today:-

      Michelle Thomson : enough column inches have been devoted to what Kevin calls “allegations”. The case is sub judice. Thomson has not been charged with any offence let alone convicted.

      The SNP ‘hounded’ Wendy Alexander. Errr, I think you’ll find, Kevin, it was your fellow hacks who did that, and both her little brother and his boss, one Gordon Brown, stabbed her in the back.

      Scotland is the most ‘over-policed’ state in Western Europe. A Guardian commenter has demolished that comprehensively : even a cursory Wiki check reveals Scotland has less police officers per 100,000 of population than at least 10 other ‘Western’ European states.

      The ‘facade’ of SNP social policy on health, education, justice : no consideration of NHS waiting times generally being met (Kevin simply ignores this week’s reports from the NHS Regulator in England that it’s suffering the worst financial crisis in a generation with a £1 billion deficit); new South Glasgow built under-budget, on time, one of the most state of the art hospitals in Europe, and free of Kev’s dear New Labour PFI funding debt; Scotland found by official ONS 2014 report (facts, Kev, facts dear boy) to have the most highly educated population in Europe and one of the highest in the world; the most up to date figures showing crime falling in Scotland; The Scottish Government having built -and continuing to build – more council houses than 8 years of a Lab-Lib Dem Holyrood administration or 13 years of New Labour could ever dream of.

      Social justice, Kevin?

      Like any large organisation, whether it be the SNP, the police or NHS, mistakes happen from time to time. Where there has been *actual* wrongdoing or illegality by individual(s), that should be properly exposed and investigated – by the police. If there have been *fundamental* systemic failings by the the police or NHS, that would warrant genuine criticism. But McKenna, like most hacks, conflate single episodes of genuine mistakes and magnify them into the cry of “crisis!”

      And if I hear one more hypocritical shriek by SLAB of “it’s immoral!” over the Michelle Thomson affair, I think I’m going to vomit. Labour – the benchmark of morality over the past 20 years. The ‘moral’ party who brought you:-

      The Iraq War
      The WM expenses scandal, ‘flip flopping’ of homes
      6 MPs convicted
      Ex ministers leaving office for lucrative directorships and consultancies closely connected with their former ministerial activities
      Appointment of peers, gongs and knighthoods to such stalwarts as Jack McConnel, George Foulkes, Alistair Darling, John ‘Baron’ Reid.

      In the week of the Tory Party conference, and rather than simply repeat his previous week’s anti-SNP rant, Kevin McKenna would have been better served asking No voters why Scotland is better served by 5 (and probably 10) years of Osbornomics and Tory social policies, rather than spuriously attacking the SNP’s.

    228. Andrew McLean says:

      It is with great sadness that post, I have read this blog for over a year, throwing in my occasional snip it of opinion!
      But the question of gender equality is a dam site bigger than all female short lists, we need to go to where woman are positioned in our society, we could of course argue over nature or nurture, and the biological drivers in human evolution, but it’s to big a story, so let’s boil it down to somethings we can grasp.
      Our country Scotland has tight gender rules, boys play with toy guns and train sets girls with baby dolls and makeup, the woman as the weaker sex is indoctrination, and we all have been caught up in it.
      Look at a generation age, where were women placed then, their role had changed from their mothers due to the necessity of requiring woman factory, and farm labour, when most realised they could do the job better than men, it’s harder to get them back in the box, once they realise the truth, and where have we heard that before?

      Now we lost the referendum in part due to elderly and femail vote, simplistic I know, but it’s also known that women vote for gender a lot more than men, so if we go to all woman shortlists then as long as the quality of the list is maintained and there is no reason to assume it won’t then what is the problem!

      My last point is this, we are the enemy, we have pulled the lions tail, we are to be destroyed, this isn’t politics like before, this is war, the sooner you realise that the better!

    229. Capella says:

      @ Tinto Chiel
      I do understand how dispiriting it can be when accused of “disloyalty”. But I hope after a wee break and a holiday you will come back to make your, always relevant, comments. I will miss your Thomas Muir gravatar!

    230. galamcennalath says:

      Sinky says

      Imagine the banner headlines and media outcry if the UK Treasury interfered in the EU referendum but not a cheep whilst they did so last year.

      One of the many things we are up against, and want to get away from – rules for them, rules for us.

      They are the big important people full of entitlement while we are the little people to be slapped down when we don’t do as they tell us! It what passed for democracy in UKOKland.

    231. cearc says:

      Caesar!mac (Hi, there) and Robert Peffers,

      The attitude to male carers creates a lot of problems and is major block to equality.

      Even now a young man who chooses to be a full-time dad, cook and househusband for a young family is widely regarded as lazy and living off his poor wife. A woman doing the same, not so.

      Widowed with a young family and working mainly with men, the career advantages of having ‘a wife’ were very obvious to me. Attitudes have not changed very much since.

    232. heedtracker says:

      Capella says:
      11 October, 2015 at 11:13 am
      @ Tinto Chiel
      I do understand how dispiriting it can be when accused of “disloyalty”.

      Well you’ve still tell WoS readers why

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01nln7g

      is such a great boost for Scottish democracy?

      And the ongoing Bettertogether Britnat monstering of Salmond all boosted by it. Salmond’s in Trump’s pocket, both destroyers of the UK’s lovely dunes and beaches, and locals hate them don’t they, sort of stuff Capella?

      http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/donald-trump-brings-campaign-against-windfarms-to-uk-supreme-court-a6685856.html

      Another day, another round of UKOK frauds.

    233. gordoz says:

      Capella says:

      @ Tinto Chiel

      2nd that

    234. Macart says:

      @Tinto Chiel

      Have a break and get some distance. Online can get folks down sometimes and if you still don’t feel like commenting, its understandable.Its not for everyone and Gawd knows I’ve felt like chucking the laptop in the bin many times.

      Do continue to read and speak to family and friends. Communication is everything.

    235. Jack Murphy says:

      caz-m said 9:45am 11th.October:-
      “Can someone please archive the McKenna story”.
      The Guardian.
      Here it is:-
      https://archive.is/wJxOu

    236. K1 says:

      Tinto:

      gordoz says:

      Capella says:

      @ Tinto Chiel

      2nd that

      3rd that

    237. Nana Smith says:

      @Tinto Chiel

      Your decision makes me sad. But I do understand and have had to step away myself quite a few times.

      Believe it or not I read Wings for a long time before I ever posted and even now I rarely post anything other than links.

      See how you feel after a few weeks and I for one would welcome your posts.

      Take care.

      Actually feel like a break myself.

    238. Robert Peffers says:

      @cearc says:11 October, 2015 at 11:30 am:

      ” … The attitude to male carers creates a lot of problems and is major block to equality.

      Even now a young man who chooses to be a full-time dad, cook and househusband for a young family is widely regarded as lazy and living off his poor wife. A woman doing the same, not so.”

      I’ll say no more than this, cearc.

      I tried very hard to keep my wee motherless family together but the only help offered in those days, for males only, was to put the children in care.

      There was help for widows from the government, the local authority and even charities such as, “Cruse”, for widows told me men were banned.

      The council were providing much help locally to a, “Lady of the Night”, who was making lots of cash but neglecting her children. I could see her home from my window. Two male Social workers attending her at least twice per week, with boxes of food, clothing, toys, furniture and home electrical equipment. They also provided her a Home Help so she could go out to, “Work”. I got nothing but pressure to give up my children for adoption or threats to take them legally into care.

      My work had demanded much out of hours call-outs and overtime working and I was walking on my bare feet through the bottom of my shoes and starving while searching for work with better hours. The boys were not kept short though.

      There was also collusion between the DSS and the local council who made me out as the bad guy and I was denied what allowances and benefits that were my legal right. Eventually I was forced to allow then to take the boys into care. They put one at the furthest point in Fife that took all day to get there by public transport and the other at a home in Dumfries Shire – then complained because I was not visiting them to often.

      Then they assessed me to pay towards the boys care on the high earnings I made before my wife’s death and made me pay back the last penny of that for many years later.

      Now here’s the really evil bit – while in care both boys suffered sexual abuse and that has been more or less swept under the carpet. That was Gender Equality 1960s/1970s style.

    239. dakk says:

      @ Tinto Chiel

      You’ll be back !

    240. Macart says:

      @Nana

      I’ve been thinking for some time about stopping commenting and contributing. Not for the reasons you might readily think though.

      I think its time for new commenters to come forward. People with new life stories to tell, new points of view, new ideas. Folk need encouraged to come forward, have the confidence to say hello and have their voice heard.

      For me it was the likes of Dorice, xsticks, Kristine Kochanski, Dads, Clootie, Call me Dave and a host of others fighting the good fight who gave me the confidence to say hi for the first time. So many names and good posters you could fill a book with them.

      Anyroads that’s my excuse for not posting the way, or indeed with the frequency I used to. I’m kinda slowing down to an eventual dead stop and the more new voices that appear, the better.

    241. Socrates MacSporran says:

      I tend to avoid feminism or female equality issues as much as possible.

      As a widower with four grown-up daughters, I lang syne learned to do what they telt me!!

      I found, when covering the local Council meetings, back in the days when local papers did this and held the Councils to account: the women councillors tended to be the most-aggressive when it came to standing-up for their constituents, and the least-willing to reach a consensus. Maybe it’s just the type of woman we rear in Ayrshire!!

      We do, I feel, need more women in politics, particularly when it comes to welfare and social security issues.

    242. Albamac says:

      @ Robert Peffers

      noun : stereotype

      :something conforming to a fixed or general pattern; especially : a standardized mental picture that is held in common by members of a group and that represents an oversimplified opinion, prejudiced attitude, or uncritical judgment

      This is what gets me and it’s a device that’s been done to death by those who are, primarily, interested in doing down their opponents, whether perceived, imagined or real.

      Some people are so blinded by their own prejudice that they adopt a first-strike mentality, never realising that, by doing so, they destroy their own arguments and alienate potential allies.

      Most of us, I think, are agreed on the negative effects of gender inequality. The hardest part is dealing with the causes. I can’t speak for women but, to my mind, those men who are vehemently opposed to equality are similar to any other group of bigots. They are their fathers’ sons.

      Time and teaching may help but, given the huge changes in youth culture and the vast space that it occupies, my guess is that peer pressure has done more to accelerate social change than anything else, for good and ill. A visit to just about any online forum will illustrate the difference between congress and consensus.

      Never mind, though, if you need cheering up there’s always ‘Yo Momma’. 🙂

    243. Nana Smith says:

      @Macart

      Now that is exactly what I hoped would happen, new voices stepping forward. Sometimes I feel we are here talking amongst ourselves with little effect and chasing away our ain folk is just plain stupid.

      Who among us has the right to diminish or belittle anyone else. Geez I’m not the brightest spark but even I recognise everyone’s voice is important.

      The folk out on the streets canvassing are seeing the results of speaking with ‘real people’ and I myself had a few good results with direct action so to speak, and that is why a while ago I queried where the Yes campaigners have all gone.

      But for goodness sake Macart don’t leave Wings, your steadying sane voice is sooooo needed.

      Some days are downright dispiriting as Capella says.

    244. Robert Peffers says:

      @Nana Smith says: 11 October, 2015 at 12:41 pm:

      “Your decision makes me sad. But I do understand and have had to step away myself quite a few times”.

      It all depends on how you view on-line, or indeed any other form of debate. If you look upon it as a contest then you are probably doing the wrong thing by taking part. Best stick to things like TV Quiz Shows where, if you lose the contest, the presenter says, “Oh! Hard Luck, but we loved having you on. Did you enjoy yourself”?

      And it all saves the TV company prize money and is as sincere as a luvvie’s token kiss on the cheek.

      If, however, you are debating in an open and frank manner in a genuine attempt to clarify, be informed or inform each other, then that is a healthy and ultimately rewarding debate.

      Believe me this old hand has had more than his fair share of pelters on many forums both on and off line. You take pelters, and if necessary, you hit back but always accept the other guy has as much right as you do to air his/her POV. The object, of course, is to share views and, if you are open and above board, change each others views.

      It is a debate, after all, not a World war.

    245. maxxmacc says:

      Descrimination will always be descrimination, no matter what form it takes. I knew some of the Scottish Govt females from student politics years back, and a more PC, self-promoting bunch of people I have never witnessed since. What about quotas for more male primary school teachers or lollipop-people!

    246. Albamac says:

      @ Macart

      I think its time for new commenters to come forward. People with new life stories to tell, new points of view, new ideas. Folk need encouraged to come forward, have the confidence to say hello and have their voice heard.

      For what it’s worth, I think that would be more likely if people like you are here to welcome them.

    247. yesindyref2 says:

      @caz-m
      Yes I stand by what I said, as I do my reply to McKenna’s article on CiF (as dadsdarmy), first comment there for months, and first on one of his articles for over 2 years.

    248. Achnababan says:

      Referring to KMc (journalist / bile miester).

      So he has now turned on the SNP – quelle surprise!

      But it has got me to thinkng perhaps there may be something more interesting going on here in the background.

      Looking at recent local election results it seems the Conservatives are taking votes from Labour.

      This is what the Tories want to see and it would appear wee Ruthie is trying to consolidate the Unionists under her banner.

      For Labour the next step must therefore be to become more pro-Scotland as they have no future as the party of Union.

      Big question – does the SNP continue to smash Labour on to the rocks or do we keep the door open long enough for them to transform into a pro Scottish party putting Scotland first.

      While I would love to see them crushed I feel we need a second party in Scotland that is pro-Scottish and on occasion work with the SNP for Scotland’s future wellbeing.

      The Greens cant / wont do it and the Lib Dems.. well they smashed onto the rocks through their own incompetence long time ago and they are finished.

    249. yesindyref2 says:

      @caz-m “Brian Wilson or Kevin McKenna, can you tell the difference?”

      Yeah. Brian Wilson never supported Independence, never even supported Devolution.

      Kevin McKenna does. So what if he wants to support Labour? In fact good, perhaps he can help them to where they should be, supporting Indy. If they did, that’s Indy Ref 2 in the bag.

    250. yesindyref2 says:

      @Sinky
      I read that website, the letter was fine, the link about shadow director was interesting, I understand what that’s about but it’s only about 5 lines long and very vague, as it has to be. Designed to catch perhaps struck off directors operating behind the scenes, as does happen.

      Peter Murrell being in control because of “advising” BfS to change its top personnel, is kind of like me complaining to a supermarket that its aisles are too narrow and they need more than 1 person on the checkout, getting corrective action (apparently), and then being accused of being a director of Morrisons / Tesco.

      Tenuous, to say the least, a heap of smelly stuff for sure.

    251. yesindyref2 says:

      @Tinto Chiel
      Please don’t go!

      @Valerie: ” I don’t always agree with folk here,”

      Surely not! 🙂

      Independence has strength, it has strong views of many kinds, with “even” Conservatives wanting Independence (Wealthy Nation) and probably the odd UKIPper.

      It also because of the media has suspicion and at times division, especially on party lines or even within parties. Well, there you go, that’s life, Jim. But not as we know it.

    252. yesindyref2 says:

      @Davy “Well for starters, I’d be raking in the dosh for rental of Faslane.”

      That’s effectively in the White Paper, at least for the 10 years that were needed to move the Trident warhead matching and floating dock loading facilities for a 59 tonne missile, down to England. In return for dosh for the land rental, there would by the looks of it have been a transition during those 10 years from nuclear base to conventional SDF base. Don’t forget Coulport which is massive, and Glen Douglas which could be the first to be transitioned.

      In exchange also would have been mutual defence co-operation which would, whatever unionists might sneer, have been as, if not more, essential for the rUK as for Scotland. Think QRA North which has nowhere to be relocated in the rUK without a lot of cost and time, and disruption, other than the base for QRA South (I did a study of bases).

      As for transition being a dawdle, think the current exercise Joint Warrior 2015-2 taking place now. Faslane is hosting a whole load of NATO warships, French, German, Danish, Canadian, US, Italy – as it has done for years. Scottish Defence Force warships could co-exist equally well under NATO – which kind of proves the point that there is 0.000000000000% chance of Scotland being “kicked out” of NATO.

      Faslane would be the “jewel in the crown” for Scotland in Indy negotiations. It’s all in the White Paper, if you read the small print and interpret its implications. It couldn’t be detailed because nobody would be able to foretell the exact results of lost-YES negotiations, and in any case, nobody tells the other side their negotiating hand in advance, and the rUK refused to pre-negotiate.

    253. yesindyref2 says:

      “lost-YES” = “post-YES” !

    254. yesindyref2 says:

      @Macart
      I agree with Nana – it needs people like you to welcome new posters, even if they are the dreaded “Unionists” or NO-voters or Unconvinced as many would prefer to be called.

      Thanks for the “dads” thing, I never thought of that angle, just too intent on trying to offset the distortion and outright lies from the likes of Severin. And having wasted time with the likes of mrbvb and abiesalba below the line I daresay.

      I might stick around though, I moved from the Guardian to the Herald, but I think the Herald is a waste of time now.

      Independence is mainstream in Scotland, and the fight I think is more “in here” rather than with the twisted media.

    255. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Tinto Chiel.

      Why not retire to the quiet backwaters that are off-topic and Quarantine, for a wee while?

      Allow yourself to recharge…

    256. Macart says:

      @Yesindyref2 and others

      Very kind, but I’m not going anywhere, just cutting back on comments and contributions is all. Hopefully making a figurative space for some new posters in this party political driven time.

      I’ve given my vote to the SNP and even membership donations over this period, but I’m the worst party follower ever, trust me on this. 😀

      I’m more comfy on the constitutional issue and now is not the time for that IMO. Now is about encouraging confidence in the next generation and those who have newly rediscovered their politics and their influence over the political process.

      I’ll still be reading and may drop the odd hullo in now and again, but the contributions on the various sites and the larger posts on WGD will be on the downlow.

      Oh and dads? It was the way you guys put your case that made all the difference in CiF. They always stood out.

    257. Beflox says:

      Equality without quotas is a lovely idea – never going to happen though….

    258. yesindyref2 says:

      @Macart
      Yes, I’ma having a bit of a flurry of postings but’ll slow down soon as I get busy elsewhere (work).

      Electioneering is in the air but I think the parties should be posisitve not try to rubbish each other – all parties I guess, not just the pro-Indy ones.

      But support for Indy does seem to be still growing, people are reconsidering their NO vote, problem is they post and are treated like “trolls”. Well, perhaps some are, perhaps some are genuine.

      I used to enjoy our end of thread discussions in CiF, about how politics could change in post-Indy Scotland. And wondering which unionist party would switch. In the end none did, and I disagree with Salmond and Jenkins about Indy support peaking too soon, a week or so before the ref, I wish it had hit near 50% more like March 2014 and we might have seen some switching, manoeuvering. A bit of pressure on them!

    259. Macart says:

      @Yesindyref2

      Yes, its doing just fine (slow, but steady). An average 6-8% over the year (much of that evident in the last two or three polls), and at even a steady rate of a couple or three percentage points over the next two or three years, each year, there’s only one possible and near inevitable outcome.

      We discussed it a few times on CiF that 2014 may not be the year, but that the genie, the idea was out of the bottle. Once people have had that taste, an idea of how powerful they truly are as an electorate, then the game is over for the political class. At that point they cease to have the ability to direct or manipulate and return to the role of public servant or look for a new job.

      I said it many times back then that I’d hang up my political hat when the job was done. Achieving independence is probably THE single most important thing any of us can make a contribution toward. Its literally a historic event which asserts the right of a people to direct their own future and take control of their own governance.

      As positive actions go, it doesn’t get much bigger or more important. People taking their country’s future back from the politicians and corporate interest and into their own hands. I said almost the day after the vote that time is not on the establishments side – ‘Westminster will be Westminster’ to quote myself. Their own nature is against them in this contest and for all their power and influence, they simply can’t help being themselves.

      Perhaps losing last year was just the spark the electorate required?

    260. yesindyref2 says:

      @Macart
      Yes, it’s a question of when not if. I think most people are coming to realise that now, and perhaps the question is, will even those against Indy decide that if it’s going to come anyway, the sooner the better to get it all over and done? Currently a lot of people from both sides are getting the message out that it’s inevitable, so once that’s done “well the sooner the better” could be an angle to work on soon.

    261. Wend says:

      I think you are wrong and Nicola is right on this one.

    262. NN says:

      The SNP already declare certain areas “women only”, therefore trampling the democratic choice, meritocracy or the idea of freedom of choice.

      The obvious logical conclusion of this path is for them to use careful study of the census and surveys to force their areas to reflect the population make up. Certain areas gay only. Some Christian. Some Muslim only. Some gay Asian, etc. All to “balance” it out and make it reflect exactly. Otherwise the whole thing is a sham, a joke and a trampling of democracy, all to selectively pander to whatever will win them points in the media, social or mainstream alike. They’re choosing to open this can of worms. They cannot complain about the mess…or taste after that.

      There’s already a stigma for politicians who got in on the lists. There will be ZERO respect for someone who rode in on a quota. And why should there be? It wasn’t earned. It was handed to them to tick some boxes and meet targets. Bars are lowered and rules bent to get one in to fit the quota over another who would have earned it otherwise. It has nothing to do with running the country well. It will also be ripe with nepotism and favouritism as the various different types of quota slots need to be filled.

      Nevermind the key utter absurdity that the whole thing implies – that you cannot be represented in parliament by someone other then someone who is demographically the same as yourself. Another impossibility and absurd target that these quotas end up aiming for.



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