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Welcome to Gobbler’s Knob

Posted on March 25, 2014 by

We think we might have just worked out why Scottish newspaper sales are in irreversible decline, readers. It’s because if you buy the papers for about two weeks you can just keep them in a drawer, bring them out a few weeks later and read all the same stories again without having to pay for them twice.


Because in the Scottish media, every day is Groundhog Day.

Today, for example, offers several opportunities for readers cursed with the memory of goldfish with Alzheimer’s Disease to learn, for perhaps the eighth or ninth time in recent months, the shocking information that the Scottish Government is spending money pursuing the policies it was democratically elected to pursue, and which were openly laid out in its last election manifesto.

“Campaign cash row erupts as Darling accuses Salmond”, reports a concerned Magnus Gardham in the Herald, like a man splashing the scoop that March has “erupted” after February. “SNP ‘using public money to promote independence’”, reveals the Scotsman’s Andrew Whitaker to readers who weren’t previously aware that the incumbent Scottish Government was in favour of a Yes vote in the coming referendum.

(In fairness, as most of the Scotsman’s remaining readers appear to live in 1950 they may not have been aware that there was an independence referendum, or indeed a Scottish Government, at all.)

The justification for this “news” was that Alistair Darling whined about it – as he does most weeks – in a speech yesterday, bleating furiously across several papers (also including the Daily Record, the Telegraph and the Times) that “What I find irritating that it is such an uneven contest, where they can use the power of government and the financial power of government alongside their own party stuff.”

Because of course, he doesn’t have any of “the financial power of government” on his side. The UK government has, as we all know, adopted a firmly neutral position on the debate, refusing to express any opinion or undertake any taxpayer-funded exercises designed to influence the vote in favour of a No.

Wait, sorry, we got confused for a minute there.

Unlike the Scotsman, Telegraph or Record, the Herald at least acknowledges that “The Conservative-LibDem Coalition has published a number of analysis papers, paid for by taxpayers,which have highlighted what it claims are the true costs of independence.” But while all are keen to detail the £1.25m cost of the White Paper, it neglects to point out the price to taxpayers of the UK government’s “analyses”.

That, as we already knew, is because the UK government refuses to say what it is. This site, along with other people, has submitted FOI requests to find out the costs of the anti-independence papers, only to have them refused. But oddly the papers don’t keep reporting that at fortnightly intervals like they do with the No camp’s complaints.

You’d think – if you were some sort of crazed, naive idealist – that journalists would be more concerned with the government that’s blatantly suppressing information than the one that’s openly and freely publishing details of what it’s spending pursuing its democratically-mandated goals.

You’d imagine – if you were perpetually drunk or just epically stupid – that Scotland’s fearless press newshounds would be hammering on the door of the Information Commissioner’s Office every day to ensure that the Scottish public had balanced information from both sides.

But why would they bother when they can just take the story from a fortnight ago (or the one from last October, or the one from December, or the one from January, or the one from February), paste in the new quotes and fill a page with the same old rubbish again with next to no effort? That seems altogether too much like hard work.

Tick tock, Scottish newspapers. Tick tock.

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84 to “Welcome to Gobbler’s Knob”

  1. Repost from the very fag end of the last piece …

    This might be a more rational time to post my second article than was one o’clock this morning or thereabouts!

    If Labour’s Scottish conference was a fraud, it’s only because of the larger fraud that is Labour UK.

    These people have been the source of great hilarity to me over the past few years. Now, with the UK opinion polls showing a meagre one point lead I’m no longer laughing.

    No-one should be laughing.

    It should be said that the Rev had called this one a while ago. With UKIP voters certain to go with Cameron when the chips are down, the news ain’t good for Labour.

  2. McHaggis says:

    Whatever happened to The Scotsman’s latest whip round with the begging bowl to stay afloat?

    The Herald – excluding Gardham does for the most part offer sensible balance… however, we can’t really exclude Gardham can we? He’s the sole reason I don’t subscribe.

    The rest hardly matter and I’m not too concerned what a knuckle-scraping reader of the Daily Retard is going to vote in September, simply because they will vote how they are told in that paper so we already know.

    I genuinely will celebrate the demise of The Scotsman almost as much as victory in September.

  3. Helena Brown says:

    Having many friends in the US and one in Pennsylvania I am only to aware of Phil and his weather predictions, he may not see this winter out given that said winter has lasted longer than the prescribed 6 weeks there.
    Returning to the joys of the “Scottish” Newspapers, well the Better Together crowd have just about shot all their bolts so nothing much can be said on their chosen subject far less commented on.

  4. Thomas William Dunlop says:

    One just needs to google “Scottish independence” and click “news for”, to see what the daily byline. More often than not, the same story is spread over multiple MSM sites. It is so obvious that a line is fed every day or so and the copy get’s picked up by the MSM to dutifully desiminate. Luckily they are on the way out, and nobody believe a word of they say, even if they read it, out of habit. I cannot also under estimate the role of sites such as this in getting the message across/ and or counter act the pro-union viewpoint

  5. beachthistle says:

    If the White Paper cost £1.25m, then this is less than the figure I estimated a few months of how much Whitehall had spent on the ‘Scotland Analysis’ programme (I’m a former UK government official who used to commission research/hire consultants & academics and organise inter-departmental publication drafting/commenting processes).

    In addition to the media myopia regarding the blatant bigger picture government spending double-standards, I find it bizarre that of all the people the ‘No’ crowd could put forward to whine hypocritically about this, they chose Flipper: who said himself in a BBC interview with Alan Little that he is working “full-time” for BettersTogether – at the same time as still collecting his MP’s/”public money” salary…a fact that not one so-called ‘journalist’ seems to feel is pertinent with regard to his ‘complaints’.

  6. desimond says:

    Im sick of this Scottish Government wasting money, what next, free prescriptions?, tuition fees?….they spend it like theres no tomorrow. Oh for a safe pair of financial hands like Mr Darling at the helm.

    Strange how a party like Scottish Labour, the party who are so obsessed with Accountability, are NOT jumping up and down and demanding to know what the UK Govt has spent on fighting for a NO vote eh?

  7. Murray McCallum says:

    You would think at least one of the adult comics would want to know how much of our (and their) taxes went towards paying that Australian bloke to say Scotland was “extinguished”.

  8. Morag says:

    James, off-topic on the first post? 5… 4… 3… 2… 1…

  9. liz says:

    I will be glad if Labour don’t get voted in in the rUK because it is what they deserve.

    Why vote for a mini me when you can get the real thing.

    There will be folk who vote NO cos they hate Alex Salmond but these folk are propbably just looking for an excuse to vote no as they don’t have a rational reason.

  10. joe kane says:

    Ace reporters Phil Space and Lunchtime O’Booze with another exclusive Darling scoop.

  11. Papadox says:

    OT. Carbuncle on daily politics for whole show

  12. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    McHaggis at 11.40

    Bit hard on the Record there. We’ve got Joan McAlpine with her page today, a huge spread on another star that is voting YES across the middle pages and the letter of the day very good for us.

    What’s the bit about “a sinner repenteth “. Maybe the Rew can quote it.

    Add to that Andy McNichol’s description yesterday of Labour’s Devo plus and Red Paper stuff as “mostly nonsense” and I would say that it is not the red tops that are our biggest problems. (And I would pay if I could just buy the readers’ letters out of the Herald today)

  13. Ooooops Morag! Forgot the rules on that!

    Haven’t been posting here long!


    I wonder how much “public money” the BBC has spent regurgitating lies during this campaign? That would be interesting to know.

  14. Training Day says:

    It would be enlightening to know how many FOIs on the same issue the usual suspects in the ‘Scottish’ MSM have lodged with the SG, and how many they’ve lodged with Westminster.

    I’ll take a wild guess at the latter figure..

  15. HandandShrimp says:

    Sadly many of the papers and the TV seem to respond to the dog whistle of the Better Together campaign and print whatever they release with little or no journalistic analysis. In fact do these papers even employ serious journalists these days?

    The Better Together Merry go Round has only a handful of key topics

    1) Orkney and Shetland will leave and take all the oil (and the Hebrides too depending on how daft the story is)

    2) We won’t get into the EU

    3) Every business will leave and every Scot will be unemployed.

    4) We can’t have the pound because our banks (which have left) will make it too risky.

    4)Pensions we have the shortest life expectancy in Western Europe but we have a demographic time bomb (presumably we can combine the two and our people explode like Spinal Tap drummers at the age of 62)

    5) Defence – usually something inane from Hammond or something wistful about big guns from Murphy.

    6) We will have to comply with all the EU rules and join Shengen and the Euro even though we will never get in the EU

    7) The Oil is almost depleted (which is presumably why the islands would want to leave with it)

    8) Wild card – our phones won’t work, increased likelihood of alien abduction etc., these are generally so stupid that they only run once.

    In short there is a very limited number of stories political editors can print. Buy a paper for two weeks and you will have the next 6 monthes of domestic political stories.

  16. Oneironaut says:

    “Okay, campers, rise and shine, and don’t forget your booties ‘cos it’s cooooold out there…” 🙂

    This is one reason why I don’t read the news any more. I read it all years ago, and the only thing that ever really changes is the cartoon page (the only bit of a newspaper I ever read now, if I happen to find one on the seat of a train or something ‘cos I wouldn’t waste the money to buy one! Can’t afford it under Tory rule anyway!)

    The other reason being that reading the news makes me extremely angry, and I’m trying to stay calm this year!

  17. boglestone says:

    How touching that Flipper is worried about the misuse of public money.

  18. MajorBloodnok says:


    I am disappointed with the 8 scare stories you listed because surely if you mention Spinal Tap then it should go up to 11.

  19. Jim McKenna says:

    On the subject of newspapers, in the Shetland News dated 23rd March there is an excellent in-depth report of last Saturday’s Independence debate in Lerwick. As one of the speakers was Alasdair Carmichael talking in his own constituency it must have come a considerable embarrassment to him to find that he was soundly defeated. Well worth a read!

  20. Robert Peffers says:

    There is a fine old Scottish Lallans word, “Knapdarloch”.
    As is so often the case with such useful Lallans terms it has two different, but related, meanings when owerset intil, (translated into), The Inglis.
    I can do no better than quote you both from, “The Concise Scots Dictionary” : –
    1 – knapdarloch – a knot of hardened dirt and dung or matted hair hanging from the coat or tail of an animal.
    2 – knapdarloch – a contemptuous term for an undersized, dirty, cheeky person.
    The problem is just who could we use the term, “knaprarloch”, to describe in the context of the ongoing Independence debate?

  21. Eric McGirr says:

    The Herald says:

    “Better together, made up of different pro-union political parties”
    As opposed to…. Yes Scotland, made up of different pro-independence political parties.

    Darling says:

    “The Yes Scotland effort is backed by wealthy donors and taxpayers cash”
    As opposed to Better Together… who are backed by wealthy donors and taxpayers cash.

    What next?…. no comparisons between a couple who won the lotto… and the honourable Ian Taylor from Vitol!

    Keep greetin’ Mr D. If the ‘contest’ is so uneven, maybe you could lean on the media to be more pro-union?… oh, wait…..

  22. HandandShrimp says:


    I think you have identified why Better Together are so lacklustre. They simply can’t manage to go all the way up to 11. 🙂

  23. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “James, off-topic on the first post? 5… 4… 3… 2… 1…”

    He gets ONE free one for letting us run the splendid “Ears wide shut” piece. AFTER THAT, DEATH.


  24. desimond says:


    Mind we will lose 95000 university places for our beloved Scots pupils as all the EU pupils will come for free even though we wont actually get into the EU ( copyright future Labour leader Kezia Dugdale)

  25. Erchie says:

    I recommend Jame’s blog that he linked to in the first comment. It is insightful, entertaining, well-written but, more importantly, he makes a Tolkien reference.

    Today is March 25th, the day the Ring was destroyed and why I would have loved Independence Day to be March 25th 2016. 😀

  26. Stevie says:

    Enjoyable analyis – fun even… a concept that has slipped the KOKs by completely. What a miasma of depressing, grim unpalatable bile that spews from the BritNats – it actually is quite a prism into their arrogant, negative mindset that offers up some deal of explanation as to why they are so crap at government in U KOK land. This being their attitude to the plebs and any other scum underfoot (i.e. everybody whio isn’t them) explains their blind careless incompetence and general badness in policy.

  27. Rev. Stuart Campbell:

    Haha thank you mate. Much appreciated 🙂

  28. fergie35 says:

    BBC and the Scotsman work hand in hand.
    I binned my daily visits to the North Britsman and was sent a survey by them, I ticked the box saying I would not recommend the Scotsman to anyone, and so went onto to the detailed reason why, my answer to them was;
    Poor journalist content like the pathelogical Brian Wilson and his rants, and the condescending Brian Monteith, not enough quality journalism like Lesley Riddoch, the Papers endless bias to the No campaign, misleading headlines, the moderators used by the paper who go under several names for the same person and spend the day throwing abuse at Yes voters and Alex Salmond especially.
    The Scotsman has become a LabServative-Dem party broadcast that bases its hopes on retaining the union by abusing Salmond and the Scots in general.

  29. heedtracker says:

    Carmichael doing an amazingly great job of NOT saying anything at all about what devo Liberal’s will “give” Scotland, despite repeated direct questions from nice tv lady. Want to know how to say nothing for ages on tv, tune in BBC2 Politics show right now and listen to this chancer waffle for the union.

  30. Vronsky says:

    @Robert Peffers

    Funny how experience expands vocabulary. It’s not lallans, but rummaging around all this independence stuff, and thinking about Westminster, I discovered the word kakistocracy.

  31. HandandShrimp says:


    I think Ming raised the bar with his incredibly vacuous waffle about consensus and the inability to put a time frame on consensus. If ever waffle said you are getting hew haw that was it. The Portsmouth PM probably feels he has to have a stab at clearing that bar.

  32. Kenny Campbell says:

    Shut up Darling !!!!

  33. Fiona says:

    One thing that I find interesting is that it is not Scots alone who are increasingly aware of BBC bias. These are btl comments from Richard Murphy’s Tax Research UK blog

    David Kirkham says:
    March 22 2014 at 11:00 am
    Will the BBC or any of the other MSM channels let you put this across on TV and radio Richard? I stopped watching and listening to the BBC for news content a good while back; but my mum had the TV tuned into the Six O’clock news on the day of the budget; the BBC report on the budget was the most blatantly pro-government account I’ve seen in a long time. They didn’t even report on the People’s Assembly budget day protest; instead the voice of the nation was found at a Northants golf club.


    I’ve ditched my TV license after protracted negotiations with my son! I consider the BBC news unwatchable in its condescension and simpering, cloying approbation of the status quo -The beebs time is up, I feel, in terms of its probity on all levels. I now see the TV as a largely neo-liberal portal in the lounge – not welcome in my house! –

    There may be some cross over with people who post here, but that blog is not concerned with the referendum per se: it is focussed on tax issues across the whole of the UK. The subversion of the BBC to a neoliberal mouthpiece is not going unnoticed

  34. Ken500 says:

    Spend £million to save £Billions, squandered by Unionists. A good deal.

    People only go on MSM websites to read the comments, not the editorial.

  35. CameronB says:

    I think I missed saying so at the appropriate time, that it was to meet you on the hill. Nice is not the right word, but…

    (b>[Alistair Darling]…who said himself in a BBC interview with Alan Little that he is working “full-time” for BettersTogether – at the same time as still collecting his MP’s/”public money” salary…,/b>

    Well spotted. 😉

  36. msean says:

    The public voted for the present Scottish Government,delivering an unprecedented majority,because they said they couldn’t get the bill through without it.Well,they asked for the majority,and they got it from the people.

    The voters agreed and they were tasked with delivering the indyref,and they delivered.Democracy in action.

  37. Robert Peffers says:

    Just watched Alistair Carmichael on BBC 2 in a neighbour’s house. He, (the neighbour), is a rabid unionist and was loudly cheering on the SoS. After spending most of his time on air extolling more devolution the SoS said the referendum is not an election and the devolution question is a matter for after the referendum is WON, by the unionists. I said to my neighbour, “So just why has the SoS spent all that time on air talking about devolved powers to debate the referendum only to informed you it is a matter for AFTER the referendum”? Things went very quite then in my neighbour’s house. I’ve sensed for a while he is on the point of, “A Road to Damascus conversion”, his main debating points are slowly being dropped from his debating armoury as they fail to stand up to the real World. For example he no longer crows about Scotland being forced outside of the EU while simultaneously claiming Scotland would have to adopt the Euro and join Schengen.

  38. jingly jangly says:

    Why would you get all excited about an English attempt to create a Mythology for themselves when we and the Irish have some wonderful Myths that may just may be sometimes based on historical fact?

  39. heedtracker says:

    Today bettertogether Aberdeen’s Press and Journal’s a bit vote no creepier than usual, with headline there’s a “hurricane” of a petition DEMANDING independence from Scotland for Western Isles, Orkney and Shetland, you’re also a muppet if you vote yes, Salmond “hails” food banks opening but “abhors” the why and just caught bettertogether BBC lunchtime headline vote no tv news attacking SNP child care plans for Scotland and that’s just the tip of the vote no Tuesday iceberg in Aberdeen. Whatever you say about Scottish journalists, they’ll never quit trying to make us all vote no.

  40. Grouse Beater says:

    I get a feeling of deja vue every time I hear the term Groundhog Day.

  41. Oneironaut says:

    @Grouse Beater
    Didn’t you just say that already? 😉

  42. heedtracker says:

    So lets all be BBC Scottish “journalists” for a day and in a few minutes the BBC in Scotland tv news will do a thing about proposed Scots child care. So, how will Scottish journalists report this important issue for BBC lunchtime news?

    1. Salmond is bad
    2. Sturgeon is bad but is a women so she may know a bit kids but Salmond is bad and he has no kids either
    3. They is no way an independent Scotland can afford child care insanity
    4. Its all a con to try and make mum’s vote yes.
    5 Johann Lamont is a mother
    6. Salmond is bad

  43. CameronB says:

    Oh well… 🙂

  44. Grouse Beater says:

    The Scotsman has sacked all its photographers and is moving out of its purpose built building to the art deco offices on Orchard Brae.

    I hear their current home is to be taken over by the video game folk who make gizzilions from Grand Theft Auto….

    If someone has already posted the news then this must be Groundhog Day.

  45. ScotFree1320 says:

    Reuters UK covered this yesterday. I was only too pleased to enlighten them with their first BTL comment

  46. CameronB says:


  47. ScotFree1320 says:

    Now Reuters have repeated the story at a different URL – they do that a lot! Comments left there too 🙂

  48. Papadox says:

    Re BT Scots elated when negative news, no EU, no NATO, no pound, is announced.

    If Scotland were playing an international and they announced just before kick off that three players had been withdrawn would the Scots supporters be cheering and happy?

    What kind of person would be over joyed at seeing their own country hobbled, belittled and made fun of, told your to stupid, to poor, to wee and couldn’t run your own life!

    Pretty sick type of individual if you ask me. If you really can’t run your own life that is very sad but to be proud of it. That’s a whole new ball game, they should be in a place of safety with carers looking after them.

  49. lumilumi says:

    @desimond 12.24

    Students from other EU countries don’t pay tuition fees at Scottish universities as it is. (EU rule)

    Only rUK students do (and I think Welsh and NI governments assists their own with tuition fees?).

    So the fear is that if iScotland and rUK are both in the EU, rUK students wouldn’t have to pay tuition fees in Scotland either, which could lead to a greater influx of rUK (especially English) students, thereby potentially making it harder for Scottish students to get a uni place.

    Then again, if rUK leaves the EU, Scottish unis could charge tuition fees for rUK students (and all EU students if iScotland wasn’t in the EU either).

  50. heedtracker says:

    ScotFree1320, CameronB, hello! All I got from that BBC vote no for child care thing was Jacky Bird going “its welcome but unworkable” then nice lady at nursery with cute kids and explaining how its all too too expensive. Overall BBC vote NO propaganda value,B+, slight ambiguity as its either pay a fortune so changes due or get a vasectomy, no backsies!

  51. Linda's Back says:

    Edinburgh Evening News giving front page coverage to Alistair Darling’s latest whinge about Edinburgh’s financial sector collapsing after independence.

    Flipper says “its as bad for the city as Banks crisis”.

    Well he should know as it was his UK government that was responsible for banking regulation.

  52. Vronsky says:

    I never read the news. It is always the same. Everything is wonderful, except for foreigners, who deserve it. Gottit? Now STFU.

  53. turnbull drier says:


    Just phoned YesScotland to see if they have any dispatch bags (as there was none on the web site) it appears that they have been discontinued.. booo!

    It’s not like there are 6 papers still to come out and it’s not like people might want to “Dispatch” them..

    Oh, well I guess I’ll continue to lug the papers around in several polly bags.. 🙁

  54. Linda's Back says:


    If after Indy, England continues to charge Scottish students £9000 a year tuition fees then Scottish government can legally and morally reciprocate.

  55. heedtracker says:

    @ ScotFree1320, have you ever met anyone from the Hebrides, Orkney or Shetland that has ever said they’re NOT Scottish? I grew up with, went to school, uni, work with people from all of these islands and the only independence for the islands shouters are always always wealthy incomers and ConDems like Tavish Scott on the make, as usual.

  56. Jamie Arriere says:

    I can see Bill Murray waking up in his hotel room, and instead of Sonny & Cher’s “I Got You, Babe” on the radio, it’s GMS and One-Eyed Naughtie with another warning about future oil revenues in an Independent Scotland, in his very dreariest tones.

    Out the window goes the radio alarm – there’s been so many ‘killer blows’ dealt to us, I’m sure we feel just as invincible.

    And more bollocks about Orkney Shetland & the Western Isles – it’s as if this never happened :

  57. HandandShrimp says:


    That is why I could never join Better Together. The glee with which they embrace every negative word or forecast about Scotland is just plain embarrassing. I’m surprised they haven’t opened a sub office of the Westboro Baptist Church and go to public meetings with “God Hates (insert issue here)” placards. They have the same mentality.

  58. Morag says:

    Turnbull Drier, you should have been at the October SNP conference! Everyone was given a yellow satchel with “Yes Scotland” emblazoned in black. Good for crossing roads with! Mine takes 75 papers carefully folded by my devoted helpers and packed in 25s in poly bags to keep them dry and tidy. Pocket on the front with Yes Scotland lanyard, badge and a few car/window stickers. Flap pocket takes Farming for Yes or Aye Right or Labour for Independence leaflets for use as required.

    I just know it’s going to see a lot of use between now and September.

  59. Desimond says:

    @lumilumi @Lindas Back

    Thanks. Its the sheer self-knot-tying arguments put forward by people like Kezia Dugdale ( and then reported unchallenged of course) that is the main point here.

    We all know anything else, such as fees etc can be sorted out with respectful adults sitting down and reaching agreement to suit all parties. Proper grown-up stuff which the NO campaign seem so very afraid of.

  60. Jeannie says:

    Hmmm…will be interesting to see what rules they adopt for the proposed referendum on the islands wanting to be Scottish or British. Will we hear things like, “I have lived in Glasgow for the past 25 years, but I was born in Lerwick so I should have a vote”? Or will they decide that you can only vote if you actually live there? Over to you, Tavish.

  61. Desimond says:


    You know how they always says “too stupid”, perhaps theyre not ALL wrong, just very introspective. Thankfully the rest of us are doing fine outlook wise!

  62. CameronB says:

    Jamie Arriere
    Who knew Scotland was the black knight? No not the Deep Purple album.

    Black Knight

    Well three just feels right, so for those who like it a bit heavier. Hope they’re not rude and I’m afraid they don’t sound very positive.

    Architects – “Naysayer”

    This is more like what I would call astonishing.

    Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Astonishing

  63. Erchie says:

    Although Tolkien set off with the notion of a literary ‘Anglo-Saxon mythology’, that notiom died as his works developed.

    Norse and Germanic mythology is a heritage Scotland has a share in. We had links, including ecclesiastical administratiom right up until pretty near the Reformation. We have places in Scotland, as far south as the Clyde, in Norse Sagas.

    Did you know that the Cymric legends of ‘The Old North’ refer to places now in Scotland. We have a wealth of mythic heritage to enjoy.

    Bottom line though, they’re good stories. There is a lot of juman nature explored on them. The best and worst of us

  64. No No No...Yes says:

    Clever stuff Stu. Was the Welcome sign a subliminal message or a cryptic clue for the readers?

    Being curious about the welcome sign cartoon animal, I did a quick google and guess what?

    The groundhog is a member of the squirrel family, hah ha ha!!!!

  65. turnbull drier says:

    Morag.. Thanks for showing me the wonders that are available with one hand and whisking them away with a

    “you shoulda been there, it was great…”

    I can only dream 😛

    Polly bags it will have to be.. /sighs and wonders if he can write Yes in back marker over Tesco sign…

  66. lumilumi says:

    @ Linda’s Back

    That would depend on whether iScotland and/or rUK were in or out of the EU.

    The EU rule is that as to tuition fees, you have to treat all EU students the same as your domestic students. Right now Scotland is in the EU, Scottish students don’t pay tuition fees, so Scottish universities cannot charge tuition fees from any EU students (I think non-EU students do pay tuition fees even in Scotland but not as high as in England).

    The situation re rUK students in Scotland is an anomaly. From the point of view of the EU they’re domestic students but not from the UK point of view because education is devolved. Apparently it is OK to charge different tuition fees within a member state.

    As an EU member, iScotland would have to treat all EU students (including rUK students if rUK was in the EU) the same. (no tuition fees for Scot/rUK/EU students)

    If iScotland was in the EU but rUK not, EU rules wouldn’t apply to rUK students but would apply to all EU students. (no fees for Scot/EU students but fees for rUK students)

    If iScotland and rUK neither were in the EU, the EU rules wouldn’t apply, so Scotland could charge tuition fees from rUK and EU students. (no fees for Scot students but fees for rUK/EU students)

    The only way English students can hope to study for free in Scottish universities is to hope for YES in September and iScotland’s speedy EU membership, and then vote IN in the rUK EU referendum in 2017. 🙂

  67. Desimond says:

    @Jamie Arriere

    Revs Got You Brave

    They say we’re stoopid and wont vote No
    They’ll flip their houses until we go
    Well Johan can’t count, maybe that’s true
    ‘Cause Rev got me and Wingers, Revs got you

    Brave, Rev got you brave, Rev got you brave

    They say our oil won’t pay bedroom tax rent
    Darling warns 5 years, our oil fields all spent
    I doubt that’s so, Mps will sure lose a lot
    But at least I’m sure we dont need james

    Brave, Rev got you brave, I got you babe

    I got graduations in the Spring
    I got Social justice, protecting
    And while Labours sad, big Blair is a clown
    Scots wont get scared, standing up proud

    So let BTs claims, be lies so long
    Scots now know, with YES We wont go wrong

    Then put your little X in Y
    There ain’t no hill or munro we can’t climb

    Brave, Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave

    I got you to watch my back
    I got you to reject War attack
    I got you to shelter the poor
    I got you to help others more
    I got you to help break down walls
    I got you to hear help me calls
    I got you I won’t vote No
    I got you to love me so

    Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave,Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave,
    Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave,Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave,Rev’s got you brave, Rev’s got you brave

  68. Oneironaut says:

    I got one of those from the Garnock Valley/West Kilbride Yes team when I agreed to do a little paper round here in Stevenston for them.

    (Something that seems to have made some local BT activist take note as we got BT papers through the doors a week later!)

    Still got it since I haven’t had the chance to return it to them yet. Oh well, if any of you guys are reading this, let me know if you need any more papers delivered 😀

  69. ecilopex says:

    My son Sean Currie has been banned from posting on Better Together because they do not approve on the truth being told. Freedom of Speech !!!!!! Freedom of Expression !!!!!!

  70. Jamie Arriere says:


    [stands and applauds]

  71. TJenny says:

    Desimond – fantastic lyrics – glad we’ve got WoS + you babe. 🙂

    O/T – BBC news just announced that MPs have voted to give the govt. the go-ahead to decriminalise the non-payment of the TV licence fee – but there will have to be a review as to how it would be implemented. (Isn’t there always?)

    Question – there was a recent article in one of the papers where MPs were advocating that BBC encrypt their signal so that non-licence payers couldn’t receive their signal. Do you think I could cancel my licence and ask them to encrypt the signal to my house?

  72. cirsium says:

    OT – I was on the Glasgow Subway this morning and was delighted to see a Wings Over Scotland advert. Good work, RevStu! It made my day to see the WoS logo in a public place.

  73. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    I liked this comment on the Shetland Times following the debate last week and the silly nonsense coming from some Btter Together figures on Shetalnd breakingaway.
    It is inShetland dialect

    “Yun is joost a divide and rule ploy. If it wisna, whit wey did we no hear aboot it afore nou?

    And whit wey is it open ta da whole world ta sign?

    Partition? Is dat really da rodd you want ta geeng doun?

    I rarely agree wi dee on onything, but I am heretofore at laest respected dy views. Dis fake viking nonsense is both deengerous and silly”

  74. Papadox says:

    I’m to wee, to stupid and to poor but I’m a proud Scot. Thanks for showing me the error of my ways. We NEED YOU ENGERLAND DONT LEAVE US, AM FEART!


  75. Blair paterson says:

    So many people in Scotland will not pay the bbc tax so they are changing the law not enough jails

  76. Desimond says:

    @Blair Paterson

    Somehow a new PLC will be formed to collect the license fee payment…”It’s the most efficient way” announces Vince Cable while tucking some shares n his back pocket

  77. Tam Jardine says:

    I read the front page of the herald this morning: “Mr Darling said yesterday there was a “huge disparity” in the resources at his disposal compared with the Yes Scotland effort, which is backed not only by wealthy donors but by taxpayers’ cash.”

    He has finally said something that on-paper I can actually agree with although his emphasis is backwards. There is a humungous disparity… the Yes campaign is backed by a range of donors from the poor to the rich and has the backing of the Scottish Government. It also has the largest grassroots campaign this country has ever seen. Ranged against this broad, positive Yes campaign is the entirity of the Empire (a government that dwarfs Scotland’s own) controlled from the death star that is westminster. (that must make me an ewok?).

    They have the foregn office (and by God they’ve used it). They have the entirity of the written press (sunday herald excepted), the state media, as well as stv, sky; a host of wealthy donors and a deluded corps of ground troops who at least are willing to get off their arses and try and push the BT brand of defeatist claptrap.

    “Huge disparity”? No shit. After Magnus Gardham had spoiled my breakfast with this through-the-looking-glass fantasy, I began to wonder if the great benefit of having a completeley servile press and state tv has not lost it for the No campaign- in giving them such an easy ride and failing to scrutinise or criticise the No campaign from the beginning it seems to have lulled them into a completely false sense of their own position, into a place where they have left it to the last six months and have mind-bogglingly failed to produce anything remotely resembling a positive case.

    Mr Darling has failed. All I believe he had to do to head off this movement at the pass was sit down with the liberals and conservatives and put together a positive case with some coherent strategy agreed for additional meaningful, useful, sensible areas that could be handed to the Scottish Parliament which I expect the canny electorate would have agreed to. If only they had worked out a positive message instead of going down the route that plays perfectly into the Yes campaign’s narrative.

    Mr Darling. You have played a predictable hand in a rigged game when you had a huge advantage so don’t you dare bleat about our side’s resources. Start acting like a man. Honest to God, its like Goliath complaining about David having a sling.

    One question for my brothers and sisters out there: Darling got the job but presumanly there were other candidates. So who on earth did they turn down?

  78. Morag says:

    Honest to God, its like Goliath complaining about David having a sling.


  79. Tam Jardine says:


    Read the herald this morning then dragged my kids round Edinburgh all day… its fair to say I was quite wound up by the time I got a chance to post. Politics as therapy I tell you.

    And so to beer

  80. Fiona says:

    @ Desimond.

    Capita already collects the license fee…

  81. BuckieBraes says:

    @Tam Jardine

    ‘Mr Darling has failed. All I believe he had to do to head off this movement at the pass was sit down with the liberals and conservatives and put together a positive case with some coherent strategy agreed for additional meaningful, useful, sensible areas that could be handed to the Scottish Parliament which I expect the canny electorate would have agreed to.’

    Yes, well, praise the Lord that he didn’t. It’s too late now.

    In September Scotland will decide that independence it is.

  82. Tam Jardine says:

    Agreed. He ain’t stopping the Yes movement now. I’m trying to look at their tactics from their point of view and they don’t stack up. Which is fantastic for all of us. I just canny abide the sheet hypocracy of it all.

    They’ve treated the people of Scotland with absolute contempt and I’m conflicted as to whether I should be grateful they have or no.

    Have a guid one!

  83. ramstam says:

    Yesterday’s Edinburgh Evening news had a screaming headline DARLING:YES VOTE “AS BAD FOR CITY AS BANKS CRISIS” No understanding at all from AllyD that Edinburgh would have a large influx of embassies/consulates and trade organisations etc on Indy. Does this man wear rubber pants and sleep with the lights on”? People need to know the facts.

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