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What Mariano Rajoy didn’t say

Posted on November 28, 2013 by

In “breaking news” during a dull ding-dong of a debate on Wednesday’s Newsnight Scotland, we were breathlessly told that Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy had made an important intervention in the debate about whether Scotland should keep paying for railway lines between London and Birmingham, weapons of mass destruction and Ian Davidson’s expenses. (We paraphrase.)

rajoy

Stopping just short of a drum-roll or mariachi band (yes, those are Mexican, but are you telling us BBC Scotland would know the difference?), viewers were dramatically informed that in a major new development Mariano Rajoy had said… exactly what he’s been saying for most of the last two years. 

What Rajoy said was that new countries would be outside the EU. He’s been saying this for quite a while now – it’s a regular threat to Catalan independentistas. It was of course covered in the Spanish media, although it came way below stories about Rajoy’s unwillingness to explain how he’s been managing his party’s finances after a series of corruption scandals enveloped the Partido Popular. La Moncloa, the seat of Spain’s government, is not in a happy place.

What would have been more interesting would have been if Mariano had said “Spain would veto an independent Scotland’s entry into the EU and cancel flights between Prestwick and Malaga.” Which if nothing else would at least make him popular with people who hate Ryanair.  But he didn’t say that.

Rajoy and his cabinet of centralistas madrileños decide Spain’s foreign policy. If he wanted to send a clear signal that Scotland would have a tough time getting into the EU, he could have said so. But he didn’t say that either.

Here’s what he did say, in both the original Spanish and English:

“Desconozco lo que dice el libro blanco que se ha presentado ahora, pero lo único que me gustaría es que se presentasen con realismo las consecuencias de esa secesión. Yo respeto todas las decisiones de los británicos, pero tengo muy claro que una región que obtuviera la independencia quedaría fuera de la UE. Es bueno que lo sepan los escoceses.”

“I don’t know what it says in the White Paper which has been presented today, but all I would like is that the consequences of that secession are presented with realism.  I respect all the decisions of the British, but I have made it very clear that a region which obtained independence would be outside of the EU.  It’s good that the Scots may know that.”

The El País article which the quote came from is entitled “Rajoy uses Scotland to launch a warning to Catalonia”. The Spanish reports which an exciteable UK media told us put a new twist in the debate quite explicitly said that Rajoy was merely restating a position that Madrid has held since it first heard the phrase independencia catalana. His comments were aimed not at Edinburgh, but at Barcelona.

El País even prefixed Rajoy’s words with recordó, which means “reminded/recalled”, as in what you do when you’re telling people things you’ve already said before. But that didn’t stop the Scotsman crowing that Alex Salmond’s vision of EU membership after independence was dealt a significant blow tonight.”

“Spanish PM continues to say same thing for two years” doesn’t quite have that punch.

rajoy2

The reason the press had to jump the gun, and that “Better Together” desperately jumped all over this thin tale, was that despite the bluster, Madrid is not going to issue a statement saying that Spain will veto Scottish membership of the EU.

It’s a bit like the argument over whether an independent Scotland would retain the pound. You get a lot of “Ooh missus! How very dare you!” from Westminster, but they don’t actually rule it out because Westminster knows that it’s in the interests of the rUK to agree to a currency union after a Yes vote. Spain, similarly, knows it’s in Spanish interests to agree to Scottish membership of the EU after a Yes vote.

There are many reasons Spain knows it’s in Spanish interests to welcome Scotland into the EU.  None of which can be voiced before a Yes vote, for reasons of both international and domestic politics.  Scotland would be a net contributor to EU funds, which a Madrid with an eye on EU budgets will certainly have considered.

(Spain is a net recipient of EU funding, and all those agricultural subsidies and investment in infrastructure for poorer regions depends on a healthy EU balance sheet. That’s not been doing too well of late, and the bottom line is that people short of dosh don’t deprive themselves of potential creditors.)

Scotland also provides access to fishing grounds which provide employment to the culturally and economically important fishing industry in Galacia – Mariano’s home region. (If you’ve ever seen a fish counter in a Spanish supermarket you’ll know what a big deal seafood is there.) Then there’s a whole trawlerful of other reasons, like our energy resources, the importance of political stability during a time of economic crisis in the eurozone, and enough realpolitik to satisfy Angela Merkel at her sternest.

But the important point in terms of Spanish domestic politics – which is all that interests Rajoy – is that Spain does not need to veto Scottish membership of the EU in order to send a signal to the Catalans. Neither does it need to do so in order to block Catalan accession to the EU.

Madrid’s case for refusing to recognise an independent Catalonia rests upon grounds which are not applicable to Scotland. The consistently-repeated line from La Moncloa is that Scotland has a constitutional right to hold an independence referendum, Catalonia does not. Scottish independence will be negotiated, agreed and recognised by Westminster. Members of the Spanish government have said repeatedly that under such circumstances Spain would have no objections.

In the event of Scottish independence Madrid will recognise Scotland, while at the same time stating that its reasons for recognising Scotland are precisely the same reasons why it cannot recognise an independent Catalonia.

Rajoy already has the only legalist reason he requires to block Catalan independence and international recognition – he doesn’t need to damage Spain’s relations with an independent Scotland in order to prove a rhetorical point he’s not actually making.

Even Rajoy’s statement that an independent Scotland would automatically be outside the EU doesn’t imply Spain would slow Scotland’s negotiations to join the EU. But it’s in the current interests of Madrid to imply that they would. There have been no independence referendums yet, so both La Moncloa and Westminster want to suggest that Scottish or Catalan accession to the EU is more horrendously complex than assembling flat-pack furniture with a plastic spoon.

The No camp likes to point out that negotiations over EU membership take an average of eight years. But the point of that process is to ensure that applicant countries are in accord with EU standards on a whole raft of issues, from democratic government to human rights, press freedom, the economy, the environment, and a lot more besides.

The negotiations are lengthy and complex because it takes time for a country to ensure compliance on environmental protection standards for newts, and regulations on the minimum number of newspapers willing to publish made-up stories about EU banana regulations. That’s what takes years to sort out, but none of it applies to Scotland, because Scotland’s already in the EU.

Confronted with the reality of a Yes vote, both will do what is in their national interests under the newly-changed circumstances. And that means the UK will agree to a currency union and Spain will agree to Scotland staying in the European Union. Don’t let anyone who wouldn’t know Spain from Spean Bridge tell you otherwise.

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    234 to “What Mariano Rajoy didn’t say”

    1. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      Nice to see you here, Paul.

    2. gordoz says:

      Hola Paul –
       
      Wonderful read ; my Catalan friends keep saying the name Franco ? What could they mean ?

    3. albaman says:

      Where`s the dug?.

    4. Graeme Purves says:

      At the European Summit in Vilnius today Georgia and Moldova signed agreements as part of the process towards joining the EU, yet here we are being told that Scotland would be shown the door.  Aye, right!

      Also, commenting on Ukraine’s deliberations over EU membership, Lithuanian President Grybauskaite told reporters:

      “Everything is in their own hands. If they’re committed to integrating with Europe and if they’re going for human rights, they’re always welcome in our European family.”

      Why would the EU take a different attitude to Scotland?  BT and the MSN clearly think we are the saftest o the faimily!

    5. MajorBloodnok says:

      Speaking as an ecologist it is never right to throw a newt at a dartboard because… no… wait… I’ve done that one (facepalm).

    6. Andy-B says:

      Good piece Paul.
       
      As per usual the press and BBC twisted, the meaning of the Spanish PM’s statement to favour the BT camp, so much jiggerypokey from those, who wouldn’t know the truth if was placed before them, I really loathe the MSM, their disgraceful.

    7. Wayne says:

      Nice to see this blog from Wee Ginger Dug being re-posted here.  Read it earlier and all I can say is bravo!!

    8. crisiscult says:

      very useful; thanks. I’m still a little unclear on this phrase he reportedly used ‘remain outside the EU’ – was that incorrectly reported or is that a veiled threat to try to veto or block membership?

    9. Robert Louis says:

      This excellent article, and another by Derek Bateman,
       
      http://drderekbateman.wordpress.com/2013/11/28/non-mes-amis/
       
      Confirm what any intelligent person knows, and that is that ALL of this nonsense about the EU and currency is just nonsense.  The EU won’t come out and say NO, NEVER, and neither will George Osborne.  Scotland in the EU makes sense to the EU, and certainly to Spanish fishermen.  Currency union makes sense to rUK, and any chancellor saying he wouldn’t do it, would be lynched by bankers as soon as he left his office.
       
      In short, it’s just the usual bollocks from unionists, no more, no less.  What is worrying is the subservient way in which the mainstream media jump to report such rubbish, with hardly a thought to check what the truth actually is.

    10. Smudge says:

      We are not outwith the EU the referendum in 14 with an expected date of independence in 2016 we negotiate our transfer into the EU whilst still remaining in the UK but negotiating for our interests.

      Its not rocket science even if Carmichael, Lamont et al want it to be.
      And as has been said in the item above Spain says no we tell them to get out of our territorial waters Death to Rojaz
       

    11. turnip_ghost says:

      Well, let’s look forward to tonight on BBC QT…I’m sure this will come up…

    12. Horacesaysyes says:

      I’d read this earlier on Paul’s own blog, but good to see it getting as wide an audience as possible. 🙂

    13. roberto says:

      It is noticable that the BBC news team are saying that Mariano Rajoy (suggests) that Scotland would have to re-apply for membership of the EU.So, the scare stories of the week are that Scotland would not get to use the pound and be ejected from the EU.As the pound is a tradeable currency why not peg the Scottish pound to Sterling and at the same time negotiate with the EU for a free trade area like Norway?or would this give more ammunition to the NO campaign.

    14. HandandShrimp says:

      The scare stories of the week are that Scotland might not have EU or pound the same scare stories as last week, the week before and the week before…not exactly original are they?

    15. Angry Weegie says:

      @Robert Louis
      In short, it’s just the usual bollocks from unionists, no more, no less.  What is worrying is the subservient way in which the mainstream media jump to report such rubbish, with hardly a thought to check what the truth actually is.
       
      This is no lack of thought.  They know the truth.  They just want to make sure that the Scots don’t find out, at least not until after September.  Then it doesn’t matter.

    16. Jeannie says:

      Was posting comments on the EU on another thread today.  I was trying to say that Scotland may be a member of the EU via the UK rather than in its own right, but in terms of being in or out of the UK, in practical terms, it’s much the same as if we were a sovereign country.
       
      We know that when Greenland tried to leave the EU, it took them around two years to do so.  Why?  Because as an existing member operating under EU rules, there was a lot to unravel.  Without that process, citizens, workers and residents of Greenland living in other EU countries would have experienced problems such as having no permission to live or work there as would EU citizens living in Greenland.  Negotiations had to take place to avoid the chaos that would have ensued.  Scotland would be in the same position, even though it’s not a sovereign state.  The infrastructure that exists would have to be dismantled and continuity arrangements put in place for citizens and trade in every EU country.
       
      Would the EU rather deal with Scotland continuing existing membership of the EU or deal with the consequences of Scotland leaving the EU? 
       
      Sovereign country or not, in practical terms, an independent Scotland would be in the same position as any other existing EU member country trying to leave it.

    17. Extreme0 says:

      Is it bad of me to suggest that if Scotland does vote for Independence that we should have a Referendum on joining the EU or not ? I’m pretty sure that there are some Scots that would like to vote yes if they knew that there is going to be a vote on the EU matter. I do know that there has been a proposal to have a Euro referendum, but not a EU one.

      I would also like to clarify that I may of just added a bullet to the No side’s ammunition that is filled with blanks by mentioning this. But it says something about the No side if they didn’t catch this one as I don’t think there has been much mention of a public vote on the EU.

    18. Ann says:

      What will Mr Rojay say when the Spanish fishing fleet will not be allowed in Scottish Territorial waters if Spain opts to refuse Scotland as an  EU nation?
      Scotland not being in the EU will effectively close our waters to all EU countries if that happened.
       
       

    19. Extreme0 says:

      @Ann
      “What will Mr Rojay say when the Spanish fishing fleet will not be allowed in Scottish Territorial waters if Spain opts to refuse Scotland as an  EU nation?”

      It would be a embarrassing negotiation to say the least if Scotland was refused by the EU.

      “uhh…we would like to access your waters.”
      “Didn’t you veto us?”
      “…no”
      “Get out.”

    20. tartanfever says:

      Sorry to go O/T
       
      I’m pretty shocked by today’s news about the Mortgage lending scheme being stopped – when I say shocked, I mean at the complete lack of reaction to it.
       
      Osbourne was told it would overheat the market and thats exactly what it’s done – and now there’s a quick adjustment to hand out the cash to small businesses. Osbourne has come under no criticism for this whatsoever.
       
      But is the housing market really overheating ? No, apart from London where prices have risen by 17%. Across the rest of the country modest rises of a few percent and static prices are the norm, so why stop the scheme ? 
       
      It seems once again that the rest of country has to pander to what London needs.
       
      Are house prices going through the roof in Hull now that they have been named ‘City of Culture’ ? Course they aren’t. There are still hundreds of fairly reasonably priced properties in the city that are in reach of many a potential house buyer – not at the hugely disproportionate London values, but everyday folk looking for a first home or looking to move to have another kid and get that extra bedroom.
       
      It’s the same story across the land, where the majority of house prices, although inflated, are not at the completely disproportionate levels of London. Another case of the tail wagging the dog.
       
      Better Together ?

    21. steviecosmic says:

      O/T When is QT usually available on iPlayer? It doesn’t seem to be broadcast live on iPLayer

    22. Jeannie says:

      @Ann
       
      That’s just the sort of thing I mean.  If we were a new country with no previous relationship with the EU, we wouldn’t have to deal with something like this.  But the fact is, we would have to deal with it, not as a new country coming in, but as an existing country coming out, if the EU sought to exclude us.  EU nationals living, working, studying in Scotland would find they had no right to be here, as would many Scots living in EU countries.  It would cause so many problems to EU citizens and I cannot imagine that other EU countries would want to deal with the fallout.  Continuing existing arrangements would be much easier, I think.

    23. Simon says:

      So let me get this straight:
      1973 Greenland as part of Denmark joins the EEC
      1979 Greenland gets Home Rule from Denmark
      1983 Greenland referendum on EEC membership
      1985 Greenland leaves EEC

      Seems somewhat odd that Greenland was not kicked out of the EEC in 1979 doesn’t it? Perhaps we should ask the Unionists to sort this out!

    24. Papadocx says:

      Whether YES or NO sterling needs Scottish oil to support it’s value. So we will use the pound 99guaranteed irrespective of YES OR NO.
       
      We are in EU and we will be accepted 99% guaranteed as an independent country, Fast tracked.
       
       
       
       

    25. call me dave says:

      Ann
      Might need a few gun boats asap to do that.
       
      I’m not adverse to having a vote on the EU if a YES vote comes.  
       
      But £5 will get you £10 that if Cameron fudges the rUK lead in discussions with EU he will declare game over and the vote will never happen.
      I also saw ‘rising star’ MSP Drew Smith’s Q re: Barnett allocation.  As I said somewhere else, they cannot count since their maths expert Andy Kerr ‘ex rising star’ took his calculator away at the last election.
       

    26. Wayne says:

      YES need to alter their approach on the EU issue to some extent at least, although the diplomatic efforts might prove productive, and we can but hope that some EU ministers/members might take exception to what Rajoy has said and issue a contrary view (though don’t hold your breath about the MSM reporting it).
       
      However, I think there is another way YES can turn the tables on BT, much the same way as they have done the last few days by demanding certainty and answers etc.
       
      The way to go over their heads and to demonstrate the fallacy in their position is to start arguing that a YES vote would trigger a wholesale re-negotiation of the (r)UK’s role within the EU.   This is in fact what will happen.  I mean it can’t be seriously contended that a loss of one third of their land mass and circa 8% of their assets, resources and population etc. won’t call for some fairly substantial amendments to the rUK’s EU status, not just in terms of voting and role on institutions, but obviously in terms of all the financial implications.  The ramifications of a YES vote for rUK’s role within the EU are enormous, and cannot yet be fully predicted.  It will all come down to NEGOTIATION.  If YES push this argument persistently people are going to come to realise and have to engage with the full mundane technicalities of negotiation, and when they do they will see that the position of Scotland must by definition be part of those negotiations.  The idea that Scotland gets booted out and is immediately OUTSIDE the EU after a yes vote is nonsense.  This is not to mention that nearly all EU members will be desperate to keep Scotland within the EU.  It can’t be emphasised enough how ridiculous the idea is that a YES vote means that business for rUK carries on as normal.
      The savvy amongst you will now have realised the other enormous benefit of this position, one which I have barely seen articulated as yet.  A YES vote will trigger what Cameron and many in England dearly and passionately want, a platform where they can re-negotiate their role within the EU.
       
      In short, Scotland negotiating their EU status from WITHIN the EU benefits Scotland, the EU and rUK.
       

    27. HandandShrimp says:

      I’m content to have an EU vote too. I know the SNP have long been very pro EU and if the terms of entry are right it has definite positives but I’m not an entry at any cost sort of pro EU person. I think we could do OK outside the EU…new start, no successor status, no debt 😉

    28. call me dave says:

      The QT debate is carried later on radio 5 live (delayed broadcast?) and there is always a live phone in afterwards.  It is quite good and I expect lots of Scottish calls.
      Usually about 23:00hrs ish!!          For anyone who wants to listen in bed.
       

    29. steviecosmic says:

      Ah bless. QT is live on iPlayer after all 🙂

    30. call me dave says:

      QT starting now radio 5 live.
       

    31. muttley79 says:

      Round 2 for Carmichael?

    32. HandandShrimp says:

      Has he got a steak over his eye Dandy style?

    33. Justin Kenrick says:

      and even The Guardian’s headline says:
      ‘Independent Scotland should stay in EU, says judicial expert

      http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2013/nov/28/independent-scotland-eu-judicial-expert-alex-salmond

    34. muttley79 says:

      Still talking nonsense anyway HaS.

    35. Mik Magnusson says:

      When you read what Rajoy actually said, the picture changes quite a lot. He said “region” (becoming independent). He DID NOT say “country”. There is a difference. Catalunya is a REGION of Spain. It is not a COUNTRY.
      This changes the debate considerably.
      The First Minister is correct. Not the supposedly-better-in-bed-together brigade.

    36. muttley79 says:

      Oh fuck Magrit is on. 

    37. HandandShrimp says:

      Aye Muttley, it might have been said Nicola knocked him senseless but he was already there before she got at him.
       

    38. Training Day says:

      Quick summary of QT so far:

      BT reps: We cannae.

    39. Krackerman says:

      Just found out from QT that the dead fish Carmicheal says we have “an Asian population”….. That’s news to me – I thought we were Europeans!!

    40. Gfaetheblock says:

      Eddi reader seems somewhat out of her depth.

    41. HandandShrimp says:

      We are too wee, too poor, too stupid and too old to be independent
       
      No one can say they are not trying to expand their repertoire.

    42. call me dave says:

      Pretty standard stuff so far then.  
      Oh spoke too soon Magaret introduces borders , temperature might rise a wee bit.
       

    43. muttley79 says:

      Should immigration be getting so much time?  

    44. Training Day says:

      The Borders has its own version of Roderick Spode, it seems..

      He also states ‘if the SNP get their referendum’..

    45. Krackerman says:

      QT taking an interesting turn – clear there is a vast gap between the audience and the panel on immigration….
      The elephant in the UK room…

    46. steviecosmic says:

      I just fell in love, again, with Eddie Reader.
       

    47. msean says:

      I like Patrick Marvie’s approach to Indy.Sensible.

    48. muttley79 says:

      Carmichael 😀 😀

    49. muttley79 says:

      Curran 😀 😀

    50. Edward says:

      Punch up between Eddi Reader and Magrit

    51. msean says:

      Well Done Eddie

    52. steviecosmic says:

      And again… swoon.
       
       

    53. WND says:

      Ooh, brief stairheed rammy….

    54. twenty14 says:

      Eddie, Eddie, Eddie – please – not so passionate. Don’t think your coming over too well

    55. muttley79 says:

      Stairheid has just been out eh stairheided…

    56. Edward says:

      Carmichael and Goldie ganging up on Eddi Reader, which means she is seen as a threat

    57. Training Day says:

      Any sentient person can see the Unionists are wading through treacle..

    58. twenty14 says:

      Eddie – passion won’t win us this referendum

    59. WND says:

      Patrick Harvie impresses me more every time I hear him.

    60. Morag says:

      This is going extremely well….

    61. Edward says:

      WND – Have to agree Patrick Harvie very impressive – Could he be our ‘Benjamin Franklin’ 😉

    62. twenty14 says:

      Patrick Harvey – Kudos

    63. kininvie says:

      I just might vote Green in 2016

    64. Morag says:

      There’s really no point me saying I’m in love with Patrick Harvie, practically speaking.

    65. kendomacaroonbar says:

      In fairness Eddie is not a politician, just a punter, and she expresses her opinion in a way many people would relate to ?

    66. Extreme0 says:

      Green are at least more creditable then Labour is.

    67. Jingly Jangly says:

      The Beebs audience selection policy seems to have gone awry. Better together mob are getting a hard time.
      Mind you some of them have not seemed to have grasped the concept of democracy.

    68. Murray McCallum says:

      Patrick Harvie the voice of reason.
      Alistair Carmichael – the concept of Scottish democracy is beyond his wit – losing all confidence.

    69. kendomacaroonbar says:

      Grahamski asking the last awkward question of the night !

    70. HandandShrimp says:

      Eddie is an artist and they are allowed to be passionate. Doesn’t look good when politicians turn on a civilian and it clears the floor for Patrick and Nicola to step in.

    71. Krackerman says:

      Eddies Havering again – oh dear…

    72. david says:

      question time audience well in favour of independence, nice 1

    73. Extreme0 says:

      @Jingly Jangly
      Mind you some of them have not seemed to have grasped the concept of democracy.
      Oh they do. It’s a democracy to vote for which dictator representative you would to elect.
       

    74. Edward says:

      The unionist’s keep bleating that the white paper is more about a manifesto for the SNP in 2016 elections. The reality is that what ever political parties are formed after a yes vote (the current London parties will not remain in their present state) will put forward manifesto’s fairly close to the white paper

    75. HandandShrimp says:

      Given Labour’s recent form their will be a carbon copy (possibly a photo-copy)

    76. Andrew Morton says:

      Alistair Carmichael is getting off lightly here. You can tell Eddi has probably had a drink or two beforehand.

    77. Extreme0 says:

      Is some of buttons on top of the reply not working ? Would explain why I’m not having any spaces or strikethroughs.

    78. clochoderic says:

      Eddie Reader just used Stairheed’s face for a mop.

    79. kininvie says:

      Don’t knock Eddie – we’ve argued on here among other places that we need a bit more passion in the debate. The commitment she exhibits will strike chords that the smooth politicians can’t reach to. She may be unable to marshall arguments as if she were in a parliamentary chamber, but by God you can’t doubt her dedication – and that impresses….

    80. david says:

      that audience was fantastic, that feeling of dread is starting to flow away.

    81. Andrew Morton says:

      Shame that the lady who was asking to be told the truth blamed the politicians instead of pinning it on the media. That would have been an interesting debate.

    82. call me dave says:

      QT extra time on radio 5 phone in.
      We’ll get the English view now I am sure.
       

    83. HandandShrimp says:

      We’ll get the English view now I am sure.
       
      Having seen the BBC HYS I think I will turn in.

    84. Training Day says:

      Dimbleby’s snide remark about the judicial murder of William Wallace at the end could not spoil the ambience that programme conveyed.

      The people are waking up and we are going to win.

    85. twenty14 says:

      Well – that turned out reasonably well. Not a bad week in  ” oor we region “

    86. david says:

      nicola sturgeons husband is one jammy barsteward. what a woman.

    87. Better Together St Kilda says:

      Oh lovely Patrick, yes vote Green.

    88. Wayne says:

      “In practice, to an even greater extent than questions of state continuity or membership of the UN, the consequences of Scottish independence within the EU will depend on the attitude of other EU Member States and organs, and on negotiations. This means that the following discussion must necessarily be somewhat speculative.”
       
      And where do you find those pearls of wisdom? In the legal advice given to the UK government by Prof. James Crawford and Prof. Alan Boyle on the international law consequences of Scottish independence.
       
      They do then go on and proffer an opinion, quite right as that is what they are paid to do, but given the above statement and that they rightly acknowledge that the position of Scotland would be an unprecedented one in EU terms, it doesn’t count for a whole lot.  So when anyone tells you Scotland will DEFINITELY be outside the EU etc. please ask them why they can be so confident, when the two lawyers the UK government paid to advise them openly admitted that any advice they could offer would necessarily be “speculative”?

    89. Castle Rock says:

       
      Stairheid has just been out eh stairheided…
       
      Hehe
       
      True but I just wish she would zip it a bit.  Still, she did put Stairheid in her place so worth watching for that.
       

    90. steviecosmic says:

      Some testing questions asked of the unionists. I think the Yes side were great, and Eddie provided more than a little light relief from the sterility of combative party politics, which is why of course she was there. All in all, a good day for the nats I think. I never expect too much of these things, it’s telly after all, but that was a decent turn out for yes tonight, touching on more than a few peripheral reasons why YES is a good choice.

    91. cjmasta says:

      Missed the start but from what i saw that was the best QT I’ve seen yet, you can see which way the wind is blowing i think. Although if you listen to the Scottish media you’d be forgiven for thinking otherwise.

    92. Jeannie says:

      Agree – Patrick Harvie did really well.  He does have a knack of simplifying complex issues and explaining them in a way people can understand. Also, I’ll never agree with her politically, but sometimes I feel quite fond of Maigrit Curran.  She’s like our own wee clown.
       
      Kudos to the audience, though.  Especially the woman in the red suit and the other woman who mentioned the cost of tribunals, not forgetting the woman who was undecided and asked Eddi Reader what had led her to move from No to Yes.  Go the women of Falkirk!

    93. Cindie aka CR says:

      I thought Eddi was good, she was obviously passionate and some people might have been upset by that, but that conversation that she had with the audience member who asked about how she made up her mind was really powerful.  Eddi said she went online and read for herself.  That’s what people need to do.  Then Nicola mentioned the white paper, that will get people thinking and hopefully reading and that’s what we want them to do.
       
      I also thought that Patrick Harvie came over well as always. 
       
      Better Together really does have nothing new and going by that audience, 75 of whom had identified as no voters, everyone is getting more and more fed up of the evasions.  Alistair Carmichael didn’t get as hard a time tonight from Nicola but the audience were obviously not very happy with him either.
       

    94. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Thouht Eddi Reader was fine and must have related well to disgusted Labour voters. She is what she is.
      Nicola was first class as was Patrick. Bella is a sad loss to the Tories and wont be the slightest bit out of place in an independent Scotland. Alastair is politically pedestrian and of little account but hard to dislike. There is little coherence about anything Margaret says. In fact I can’t remember anything she said and the programme finished only a few minutes ago.
      I do remember that Margaret in the past declared herself Glasgow, Irish and British  but tonight she said she was a proud Scot.  Is it an infectious disease. They all seem to have it .
      The currency issue is turning and the rest of the panel were all at sea. It will soon be seen for what is going on – it is a nasty threat to Scotland from unionist politicians and that is not playing well

    95. Ken500 says:

      It’s quite easy. Westminster should just ask the EU and say if there will be a currency arrangement/agreement.

      Instead of going round the houses, boring people incessantly. None are game changers or big deals. Lost in translation.

      Rajoy has lots of problems he refuses to give answers to, including a major financial scandal of corruption and misuse of public funding. A diversion.

      No one in Spain listen to him, he has lost public support. Why should anyone in Britain.

      Rajoy will not be there for much longer, neither will Cameron.

    96. Papadocx says:

      Carmichael  –  Clown – a gift to independence.
      Curran.        –  No comment. Waste of space.
      Annabel.       –  Competent, fair misguided.
      Eddie.           –  No comment
      Nicola.           – Professional steady very safe+
      Patrick            – very very good TOP CAT.
      Dimbleby.        – very good fair.
      The people of Falkirk first class, knowledgable, thoughtful, respectful. You made me proud of you.
      Yes win hands down!
       
       

    97. AlexMci says:

      Eddie reader gets a thumbs up from me, maybe not flowery political speak. But she kind of tells like it is, and I bet she appeals to the people that we need appeal to. Too many times on wings I have said this, and there are folk on here who would agree. The folk who will identify with Eddie are the folk we need to win over. The rest of it is waffle and shit. 90% of the population is not listening. It might sound bad but out the lot of them tonight, Eddie will appeal to the ” lowest common denomintor”. And in my opinio. That’s a good thing.
       
      although Mrs Alex has been forced to watch these referendum specials over the last couple of evenings. And believe me, she doesn’t do compliments lightly. Her opinion. “That Nicola Sturgeon is a right clever wummin”. Carmichael he is “trying to be a bit of a bully, not very good at it though”. 
       
      I think we are ahead, don’t care about polls and all that shit. The people are getting behind YES. We just need to target the right demographic.

    98. mogatrons says:

      Amidst all the passion there was a killer line from Eddie to stairheid;
      ‘ You (Labour) tell us (Scotland) not to support the SNP ’cause we end up with Tories …Why are you supporting the Tories to stop us getting the government we want?
       
       
      That line was not missed by the audience,….. and it would’ve resonated amongst the wavering Labour viewers at home …
      The tide has clearly turned. 🙂

    99. cjmasta says:

      Did anyone catch what David dimblbey said about being hung, drawn and quartered at the end? Did anyone notice that in the end titles all the unionists were at the top of the list of pannelists and Nicola was right at the bottom of that list?

    100. Andrew Morton says:

      Have just been on the phone to Five Live and told them I wanted to discuss the media blackout. They said they’ll ring me back.

    101. Doug says:

      Few points:
       
      Firstly – agree with views on Patrick Harvie. Top man.  Secondly, the way the EU and pound points were argued were interesting. It seems to amount to “We agree it is a good idea and there is no practical reason not to. It is in both our interests to do so. But can you GUARANTEE we won’t be total dicks about it just to spite you?”
       
      Thirdly, watching Curran and Carmichael on the democratic question, defending the unrepresentative nature of our relationship with Westminster was hilarious.
       
      A good show.

    102. Morag says:

      I’ve started wearing a Yes button (small one) at work, and nobody has complained so far.  One Italian citizen living here permanently has already asked me for more information, how to get a copy of the white paper, what’s likely to happen to research funding, and whether he as a non-Scot should abstain.
       
      I’m going to keep it on and hope nobody goes crying to teacher.

    103. Jeannie says:

      @Cindie
       
      Alistair Carmichael didn’t get as hard a time tonight from Nicola but the audience were obviously not very happy with him either.
       
      I thought he came across as very petulant and huffy when he said that the Conservatives and Lib Dems had gotten a mandate to govern.  He just doesn’t do himself any favours at all.  I wonder what Michael Moore thinks of his performances. 
       

    104. twenty14 says:

      staying up late – Andrew Neill is talking Independence. Shit Alert !- Shit Alert !

    105. ayemachrihanish says:

      Rev, What we, and every EU Member State already know :- 
      1. Scotland is a Sovereign Nation State 
      2. Scotland’s Parliament Reconvened 12th May 1999
      3. For 40 years Scotland’s been a full EU participant 
       
      Point 2 seems to nails it! 
      Well done Winnie Ewing…
      Stop the EU, Scotland want’s to get on – way – it!  

    106. twenty14 says:

      Rev – get this Andrew neill shit on tape please

    107. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Alex Mci (11.59) –
       
      What you said.
       
      Hear hear.

    108. Murray McCallum says:

      Good article Paul.
       
      Excellent choice of pictures of Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. Doesn’t he look a bit like Baldrick in the top photo? I have a cunning plan!

    109. Early Ball says:

      Okay Eddi was a wee bit OTT however what she said was spot on and ruffled Stairheed and the Bullingdon Boy.
      The more non-politicians we can get on telly on the Yes side the better. Elaine C. Smith is different class for instance.
      Delighted Judy Murray knocked back the Cameron St. Andrews bash that Ally McCoist and Ronnie Corbett attended. Cameron gave it a miss curiously!
       
       

    110. Ken500 says:

      The UK ‘EU rebate’, results in Scottish farmers getting the lowest CAP farming payment in Europe. When the EU gave the UK gov funds to redress the balance, the UK Treasury gave it to farmers in the rest of the UK.

    111. Fab001 says:

      Quite enjoyed that, even Dimbleby was even handed and the audience seemed more on the side of the Yes campaign, what’s going on at the BBC! They’ll probably be an internal inquest tomorrow.
       
      Carmichael kept trying to bring up the Spanish PM but his comments were swatted away by NS “We the Scottish people will decide our future not the Spanish PM”, brilliant.
       
      Curran looked so uncomfortable on the question about Scotland never having a Tory Westminster government imposed on us again, loved it.
       
      Eddi Reader, erm..anyway…moving on
       
      But the star of the show was Patrick Harvie, made some very sensible points and effortlessly cut through the partisanship of the debate.
       
       

    112. mogatrons says:

      cjmasta says:
       

      Did anyone catch what David dimblbey said about being hung, drawn and quartered at the end?
      ……………..
      To be fair to Sir Dimbledor … he’s said and done much worse re Scotland in previous QTs …
       
      Clearly he felt threatened by the ‘nationalist fervour’ on display and let slip his subconscious reference to Wallace ..
      Nice that he got a dose of reality tonight, rather than the spoon fed media mush he’s previously based his views on. 🙂

    113. Dcanmore says:

      O/T apologies if this has been mentioned already… Channel 5 has now blocked The Wright Stuff on Scottish Independence from UK viewers on YouTube, with almost 50,000 views. However if you want to pass it on or link to others (Don’t Knows perhaps?), here it is on Vimeo…
       

      ” rel=”nofollow”>


       

    114. Training Day says:

      @cjmasta

      Yep. See my comment above. Dimbleby’s provocative remark about being ‘hung, drawn and quartered’ did not go unnoticed.

      But his petty vindictiveness was outshone vastly by the growing awareness of the Scottish people that we are masters of our own fate.

    115. Cindie aka CR says:

      @Jeannie I so agree, he’s a disaster for Better Together.  I too wonder what Michael Moore thinks, but I also wonder what the Tories who appointed him think, I should imagine it’s something along the lines of ‘what the f*** have we done!’

    116. Ken500 says:

      Eddi Reader was brilliant! Without her it would have been a bit stale, with the usual suspects.

    117. AlexMci says:

      @ Ian brotherhood. I just knew you would agree with me mate. Seriously though, it takes a lot to impress the good lady. She was impressed aof with Nicola. I caught a bit of STV and the ladies talking about the childcare thing. That’s a massive vote winner. At this moment in time I work. We have a three year old who is going to nursery after Xmas. At this moment in time my fiancée (is it one E or two) can never remember, is desperate to work. But at this moment, there’s no chance I could encourage her to do so. We would be worse off. End of story. She could not, at this moment earn enough to make it worth our while. So really, child care and a flexible system is a winner. It really needs to be pushed hard.
       
      Ianbrotherhood , good to hear from you mate. thought you had patched me after my Eric Joyce post. I owe you a pint mate. Lol.

    118. Morag says:

      Who did he say was being hung drawn and quartered?  I missed it.

    119. Morag says:

      On to independence again, and Portillo says Alex wanted a three-way question.  Pillock.
       
      However he has figured out that the white paper isn’t a cigarette-paper away from actual devo-max.  Have a coconut.

    120. Linda's back says:

      The Unionist edifice is crumbling BofE chief wants talks on currency
       
      http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/top-stories/scottish-independence-boe-offers-currency-talks-1-3213208
       
      Again unbalanced comment on Independence on Andrew Neil’s This Week

    121. twenty14 says:

      He said – in jest about something witty that he didn’t want to be hung, drawn and quartered. He new what he was saying but don’t think we should read too much into it

    122. crisiscult says:

      posted this elsewhere. you can still view the Wright Stuff video on youtube through a proxy server, and when I checked earlier, maybe an hour ago, it was over 80,000 views as I recall. 

    123. AlexMci says:

      Don’t get how people are slating Eddie Reader. She is more down to earth than 99% of the usual suspects on TV. If you are cringing at that, well in my opinion your out of touch with most of the ordinary people of Scotland. 
       
      Perhaps you a ou all have that cringe ingrained top much. She was as I expected. Passionate about Scotland. But not trying to be some intellectual giant. A normal wee wummin, who appeals to normal wee wummin. Something Mags Curran would love to be. But fails so badly.

    124. Ekindy says:

      @Morag.
       
      Think he was implying he would be. Presume he thought the audience might be more 50/50 but massive agreemnet from the audience especially on the Tory goverment issue.

    125. Heather McLean says:

      Looks like BBCScotlandshire has devoted a whole article about you Rev Stu!! 
      “An on-going investigation by BBC Scotlandshire, carried out alongside the poll, can reveal the upsetting existence of a so-called ‘Church of Splitology’, led by Cyberbastard “Rev” Stu Campbell. With a cult following said to be in the hundreds of thousands (mainly because each human has around 500 online personas), it has led to a fifth of all real Scots stupidly believing that a man who doesn’t even live in Scotlandshire is capable of governing the region.
      A spokeslizard for No 10 said: “We believe that the people who care most about Scotlandshire – the people who live and work in Scotlandshire – are best placed to take the decisions about their futu…oh. Wait. That’s not it.” ”
      Brilliantly funny!! 
       
       
       

    126. Training Day says:

      Dimbleby said, with a knowing look to camera, that unless he finished the programme he’d be hung, drawn and quartered. He said it in Scotland. In Falkirk.

      But the vibe from the audience will be the memory from tonight.

    127. call me dave says:

      Morag
      William Wallace. Hung Drawn and quartered.  (implied no stated)
       

    128. AlexMci says:

      @Morag. Pillock is not a word that the folk I know would ever contemplate uttering. It so “only fools and horses”. Fanny or tadger would probably be a better description. Again, these are the people we need to win over. The sooner people start trying to win folk like this over the better. 

    129. Andrew Morton says:

      Surprise, surprise! Still not been rung back by Five Live yet. 

    130. TheGreatBaldo says:

      Carmichael kept trying to bring up the Spanish PM but his comments were swatted away by NS “We the Scottish people will decide our future not the Spanish PM”, brilliant.
       
      So brilliant you mistook Patrick Harvie for Nicola Sturgeon……
       
      A bit flat after the fireworks last night……my own personal rankings….
      1. Harvie – Superb cool, calm and concise…..hope to see a lot more of him on our screens next year
       
      2. Bella – Yep a Tory Yep a Unionist……but Bella is very good on her brief…we’re lucky it’s the obnoxious Darling who’s fronting BT, she’s probably the only Unionist who could give Eck a decent work out
       
      3. Nicola – On her brief…..format worked against her tonight, nae enough air time
       
      4. Comical Ali –  Not as bad last night….helped he had wingmen in Mags and Bella….ludicrous illogical arguments were there
       
      5. The Stairheed Rammy Twins I – Eddi Reader was passionate and vocal…..perhaps a little bit too much
       
      6. The Stairheed Rammy Twins II – Mag…..as two faced and loose with the facts and reality as always
       

    131. kininvie says:

      If you followed Eddie on Twitter, you’d have heard her saying earlier she hoped her brain and her mouth didn’t disconnect too much. Well they did, a bit, but I absolutely agree with Ian and Alex that that kind of emotional committment (and don’t forget she started as absolutely undecided, went to BT for info, and then realised…) reaches parts that politicians don’t reach. So good on her.

    132. velofello says:

      Carmichael stated that the general election results gave the ConLibs a mandate to govern. Isn’t that just the point, Scotland didn’t give that mandate. Carmichael is a bonus point for Indy. Eddi Reader was a breath of fresh air -” I got on to the internet to learn the truth”. Patrick Harvie excellent, Nicola excellent. Mags a silly person operating way beyond her competence.Annabel a tired old political pro., just tinkling the ivories for a dollar.

    133. Roger Terrett says:

      @ crisiscult
      The word Rajoy used, “quedaria”, can mean either “would stay/remain” (in a temporal sense) or “would be” (positional); the context reveals which is intended here.

    134. Marcia says:

      I see that the QT twitter account has linked to an 2012 article by Rev Stu correcting DD statement about General Election outcomes if Scottish MP’s were removed.

    135. call me dave says:

      Andrew Morton
      Your a Saint 
      OH! OH! here is the same voice as was on Call Kaye (the business man).  His argument is very weak and I can’t see his problem.  Aye he was on Call Kaye right enough.
       
      Anyhoo! P. Harvey was head and shoulders above everyone else.

    136. Jack says:

      Last night in a debate with John Sweeny on BBC, Johann Lamont said she wanted political decisions to be taken at the lowest level – housing associations, councils, etc.

       So, following this and bringing politics to the individual level, can anyone explain that by voting for Independence for Scotland I will be stripped of my European citizenship? What is the legal position on this as I can find nothing on line saying how this is automatically done? I am quite prepared to go to the European Court of Justice if this threat to my citizenship continues.

      If others feel the same can we take a case to the Court to stop this intimidation?

    137. Ken500 says:

      Hilarious

      Mark Carney BoE Chairman offering talks.

      Bet, as a Canadian, he is amazed the way UK funding is organised.

      Scotland has friends is strange places. Second in command in Germany is Scottish. A McAllister. The Auld Alliance with France. Comrades in the Spanish civil war. Links with Italy/Poland.

    138. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Alex Mci –
       
      You don’t owe me any pints – you got two in last time!
       
      Anyway, on the whole Joyce issue – as you know, I’m no fan of the man, but I said my bit 10 years ago, when he was being used by Labour to sell the Iraq invasion to the Scottish sector of the MSM. I felt that QT using him tonight, as some kind of whipping-boy, was out of order. They could as easily have focussed on Ratcliffe/Ineos etc – that’s more relevant, and much more embarrassing for the usual suspects.
       
      Fact is, Joyce is dead meat politically. He had no prospect of a right to reply tonight, and no-one in that audience was likely to stand up for him. It was a cheap shot, and devalued what was otherwise a relatively civilised edition of QT.

    139. Patrick Roden says:

      Am I the only one who thinks Dimbleby’s comment was aimed at BBC headquarters?
       
      IE: If I don’t end this programme (that isn’t going the way we expected or wanted) then the bosses at BBC in London will ensure I’m hung drawn and quartered (because this is what they did to another person from Scotland who was seen as a threat to London)
       
      This is an establishment figure we are talking about and people like him just love to do this kind of double speak (it makes them feel very clever)
       
      Perhaps this is just another admission that the debate is not going BT’s way.

    140. Pedro says:

      D’you notice that Union Jocks are always proud and patriotic Scot’s, but…………
       

    141. call me dave says:

      Free prescriptions etc all free and English paying for it says a pal from down South..
      Or Scottish voice (business man) accepts it and cannot explain Barnett and is a no no!
      Another Scottish voice gets cut off just before he can get his point in for voting yes to go to J. Penior(spelling?) to make a case for the union.
      Good our voice gets his point in and makes the GERS case + its our money to spend it as SG wants.
      GOOD. 

    142. Times are changing lets not forget the last time QT was in Scotland we were outvoted on the panel by 2 to 4 and Mr Dumbilby kept reminding us that this was going out to the whole of the uk and to stop trying to keep bringing the topic back to the referendum. On an other point could we not muster up enough cash to send our reverend on a fact minding mission to the EU and get an interview with both the head of the EU and the Spanish President to get the true facts to then publish them to all and sundry in Scotland?? Just a thought.
       

    143. Andrew Morton says:

      Still waiting to be called and, ironically, they’re still asking for callers! I guess someone in the office said, “Ooh, that’s a dangerous subject, don’t ring him back.”

    144. Fab001 says:

       Marcia says:

      I see that the QT twitter account has linked to an 2012 article by Rev Stu correcting DD statement about General Election outcomes if Scottish MP’s were removed.
       
      That’s number 6 in the Top 10 Unionist Myths – DEBUNKED video on Youtube.
       

    145. Ken500 says:

      Johann Lamont wants decision taken at local level because, she think it helps the Labour/Unionist Party, by taking power away from the SNP (important) Scottish gov. If Unionists had control of Holyrood the Unionists would not be bothered.

      It’s another ploy.

    146. TheGreatBaldo says:

      Again unbalanced comment on Independence on Andrew Neil’s This Week
       
      Aye but in a good way….as even better than that….it was ill informed comment !!
       
      The greatest achievement of Eck so far is to make Cameron believe he had outwitted him by removing the ‘Devo Max’ option, by getting him to think it was what he REALLY wanted not INDY, not realising Devo Max would have killed Indy stone dead…..The Rev did an article about Brer Rabbit to illustrate it in greater depth.
       
      As Portillo and co illustrated tonight was that in Westminister they STILL believe that…..they are still completely unaware that with the White Paper, the SNP has quietly stolen the ‘Devo Max’ ground from under their feet…..by weaving elements of Devo Max into the Independence package.  As you saw tonight they ACTUALLY think he’s scared of Indy
       
      They seem to fail to realise that most YES folk accept there is going to be a transitional period as powers are transferred where you are almost inevitably going to have some form of Devo Max operating anyway even if it’s only for a couple of months.
       
      So he’s not going to lose any votes there and a overall majority of Scots want some form of constitutional change….

      And think about it.  What now can the Unionists offer the people of Scotland that they have ALREADY been offered to them in the White Paper ?

      They can no long trump it with ‘additional powers’
       
      So I think we should really celebrating the ill informed ignorance of the likes of Portillo & Neil
       

    147. Morag says:

      I actually thought Portillo had got it at first.  He seemed to be saying the white paper was more or less devo-max and I thought, bingo, boyo.
       
      But does he think that’s cowardice,  rather than master strategy?  And he shadowed Salmond during the 2011 campaign too.  Wasn’t he paying attention?

    148. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Have a thought for poor old Mariano Rajoy – he’ll be up all night, trying to translate all these comments, thinking they’re about him…
       
      Anyone know what’s the Spanish for “Away aff tae yer kip noo Mariano-son, come on noo, nae offence, right? but ye’re just no relevant-like, eh…”

    149. cearc says:

      Jack
       
      There really is no question of ‘entry’ to the EU.  We are all, as you say, EU citizens and are about to have a referendum with the full agreement of the member state who have bound themselves to respect the outcome. 
      If the EU then expelled us or made us re-apply because some of them didn’t like the way we voted, they would never be able to mention democracy again without the rest of the world laughing.

    150. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Ken500-
       
      If Lamont really does believe that decisions should be made at the lowest possible level (wasn’t that once called ‘subsidiarity’?) then she may, in time, think herself lucky to have a job finding jobbies in nursery-school sandpits. 

    151. crisiscult says:

      Thanks Roger Terrett. That was bothering me for a while because I was trying to understand if he was indeed saying they’d block Scotland’s attempt to stay or to re-enter, which just seemed like total madness (very much enjoyed Derek Bateman’s entry on this today – linked earlier in this thread I think but here it is again http://drderekbateman.wordpress.com/2013/11/28/non-mes-amis/  ) 

    152. K1 says:

      Completely agree with the very positive comments about Eddie Reader, she is passionate and totally engaged.  She may not speak fluent politics, many including myself don’t either.  I too only discovered the wealth of information by going on line, discovering Wings…and right away ‘got it’! 
       
      The woman in the audience who directly asked Eddie about her experience of where she was at in February and how she came to her views from that point, is a first class example of curiosity piqued.  That woman was hungry for information and she pursued Eddie to get more info., she was instinctively drawn to her.  The woman may well be articulating for many, when she said the Euro, currency stuff wasn’t her thing, she identified Eddie as the only one on the panel who could direct her to ‘food’..substantial food! 
       
      Surely that’s an example of a don’t know., seeking direction, inevitably leading to a…yes!  Then the domino effect, one person at a time.  Eddie Reader counts, because she speaks fluent feelings.

    153. Ken500 says:

      Querer – to wish or to want

      Where’s Meths?

    154. tartanpigsy says:

      No time to read all of this but this is for Rajoy
       

       
      literally it means goat, it means more 😉
       
      F**k him  castillano imperialista hijo de mil putas

      and a great tune

    155. The Man in the Jar says:

      Back on topic. Regarding Europe it is worthwhile remembering that over 16 million former East Germans got into Europe on a nod and a wink post reunification. At the time East Germany was far from Euro=compliant and I don`t remember there being much of a fuss about it.  

    156. cjmasta says:

      Having not quite heard the whole hung drawn and quartered remark by David Dimbleby at the end my first thought was that he meant his bosses were going to do it to him for losing control of the BT message they would prefer to get out on these programmes.
      I do wonder if this is one of these programmes which will strangely be very hard to find online by the BBC lol.
      As soon as it finished I got several texts from friends, not all definite YES supporters either, I casually replied to all about which way the wind was blowing.
      So many ordinary people hungry for answers and an idea of how it will work for us, people want to be convinced that it can be done and there`s a much brighter future for the country ahead .
      It is up to all of us to work our little Scottish asses off, fill the streets, drop leaflets through doors in a targeted way and show family and friends that they have nothing to fear but project fear itself.
      Show examples of media bias, there`s no bloody shortage of them! Show that they are trying to royally shaft Scotland “AGAIN” and “AS ALWAYS”
      We face an uncertain future but we can do it with all the powers we need with indy or the limited powers Westminster parties wish us to have.
      Spread your wings OS and fly ;->

    157. Chic McGregor says:

      When I saw the article on NNS featuring input from an ‘ex-editor’ and ‘fluent  Spanish speaker’, I presumed it was someone else (you probably know who I mean).  As such I was imbued with such renewed faith in the healing power of the cause to fire off a donation.  
       
      Now it turns out I feel slightly duped.  Especially given a new article by DT, although he is now, thankfully, out of the U-closet at last.
       
      I don’t suppose you can say too much about it, but my NNS alarm bells are ringing again.  Perhaps you can at least say whether they are right to be?
       
      I note also the dissappearance of Doug the Dug and your excellent list of rebuttals of U-scaremongering.
       
      I do hope you can forge a new partnership with the Rev.  It is certainly one which I would be willing to donate more to.
       
      Having said that, there does still seem to be  good stuff coming from the NNS site, so I have not given up on them yet, just a bit concerned.
      Yours Confused of Kirrie

    158. call me dave says:

      The Man in the Jar
      Exactly and it gets barely a mention.
      What’s later today?    Blether’s big debate
        

    159. Dan Watt says:

      If anyone know who the net contributors and net recipients of EU funding are, could we have it presented to us here at some point, or even a link to find out?

    160. Bubbles says:

      QT was good tonight, enjoyed it immensely. One thing though – I keep hearing the argument that independence is a good way to put and end to the Tories for good. Surely the reverse is true? Independence might just breathe some new life into the party. I think Ms. Goldie is well aware of this and she’s biding her time.
       
      I might just vote Green in 2016, Patrick Harvey makes way more sense than most of the others in my opinion. Mind you, the last time I didn’t vote SNP (and it was only the once), I voted for Tommy Sheridan’s lot and we know how well that went.

    161. Xander says:

      @Dan
      Try graph 3, section 1.3 of the following:
      http://www.openeurope.org.uk/Content/Documents/2012EUbudget_new.pdf
      Hope this helps

    162. Adrian B says:

      The more noise that the Unionists make over currency and Europe, the more uncertainty is being created down south – they are new to hearing all this from their own press! Anyway word is getting out that rUK might be in a spot of trouble without a currency Union with an Indy Scotland.

      The EU is going to have to give some soft words of wisdom on Scotland’s position as rUK possibly leaving is gathering momentum as an idea with the population in the South of England. 

      Its not even Christmas yet 😉

    163. Craig says:

      Apparently 18 months will not be enough for independent Scotland to ‘get’ into the EU, never mind we are already in it.

      But will 18 months be enough for the EU to kick us out?

      That is the question YES Scotland should be asking.

    164. Stuart Black says:

      Mmm, just checked, the Wright Stuff clip is still working on youtube, and has garnered 94,216 viewers so far, pretty good shooting! (link below in case it is a different one that has been blocked).
       
      It’ll be nice to hit the 100k mark, shouldn’t take long.
       
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xm5EBDa42ck

    165. Stuart Black says:

      Wow, another 75 views in the time it took to write the post above…

    166. john king says:

      The introductions were the most fascinating part of that programme,
      first we have Nicola Sturgeon of the SNP :smiling and engaging eye contact with audience clearly feels as if she is among friends,
      next we have SoS Alistair Carmichael : nervous glancing around the room as if looking for an assassin with a gun not at all comfortable, 
      next to him we have Margaret Curran: downward (chagrined ) semi grin almost apologetic for being there,
      Annabel Goldie: eyes downturned only looks up (briefly) when her name is mentioned and through narrowed eyes (maybe the sort of look an accused would give a jury?)
      then we have Patrick Harvie: turns and looks directly at the audience and pans deliberately across them as if saying Im here to be open with you,
      then we have Eddie Reader: chin on hand looking relaxed (maybe too relaxed) : but gives the audience a searching stare (challenging?)

      any thoughts from our resident body language expert?

    167. john king says:

      Stuart Black says
      “It’ll be nice to hit the 100k mark, shouldn’t take long.”
       
      “this video is not available in you country”
      something we should know?

    168. Luigi says:

      The man of the match last night was Patrick Harvie – polite, considered, balanced, and still able to deliver devastating put downs.  A real star.

    169. john king says:

      Bubbles says
      “One thing though – I keep hearing the argument that independence is a good way to put and end to the Tories for good. Surely the reverse is true? ”
       
      Im with you on that one Bubbles I think the likes of Goldie (I trust my wife’s judgement and she likes Goldie) are starting to see an opportunity for a renaissance of the (Unionist ) parties post a yes vote if they can engage with the new reality she is one of the few people I could look in the eye and see a person who had/has the best interests of Scotland at heart,
      I can well imagine her even supplying the matches to let us burn the heretics at the stake starting with Alistair Carmichael who appeared to have gained a little courage last night after getting pulled round the schoolyard by his pigtails when he tartly said in response to Nicola’s assertion that the Tories do not have a mandate in Scotland by saying the coalition have a mandate by collectively acquiring 57% of the UK vote at the last election, 

      some people have short memories don’t they Shirley?
      or do you want a rematch with the velociraptor? 
      really?

      btw Major, can we nail this down once and for all
      are there any animals, birds, or reptiles it is permissible to throw at a dartboard?
      Im confused

    170. Stuart Black says:

      “this video is not available in you country”
      something we should know?
       
      Dunno John, I’m in Norway and it is playing fine, views are now up at over 94,500, if it is unavailable back home there must be a heap of ex-pats hitting on it.
       
      Dcanmore posted this link to vimeo upthread,
      ” rel=”nofollow”>

    171. Luigi says:

      “D’you notice that Union Jocks are always proud and patriotic Scot’s, but…………”
       
       
      It’s time for those “patriotic” scots to get their “buts” out of the way

    172. john king says:

      Stuart Black says
      “Dcanmore posted this link to vimeo upthread,”
       
      I actually watched it and then threw up, I just wanted to get the hits above 100.000 
      but the osm this video is not available bla bla bla suggested that the vile content was so inflammatory it was deemed unsuitable for viewing by Scots?

    173. john king says:

      Luigi says
      “The man of the match last night was Patrick Harvie – polite, considered, balanced, and still able to deliver devastating put downs.  A real star.”
       
      He made a devastating comment (he doesnt get enough fmq’s in my opinion if we heard more from him and less from wee willie winkie that would be swell)
      at dFMq’s the other day when he accused the unionists of deep dishonesty and hypocrisy in response to Nicola’s point about the growing number of children in poverty when they are happy spend money on Trident.

    174. Stuart Black says:

      Well John, I don’t know about you, but the notion that they put the clocks back for us is the catalyst for changing my vote; we should be very grateful and vote No to remain as part of this paternal and caring union.
       
      The clocks, man!

    175. Macart says:

      Nice one Paul, good to see you here.
       
      Seems the Guardian has had to do a bit of an about face on their Rajoy shock horror exclusive. I see someone’s posted the link above already. Some of us posted sections of the Tenreiro letter on there yesterday, trying to let some sense into the discussion, but the thugs were out in force. It was more like the telegraph than the Guardian for most of the day. Everything from the outright loonies to concern trolls pitching the SNP are an anchor line.
       
      Thur awe lookin’ awfy silly t’day. 🙂

    176. john king says:

      My waking (daylight) hours are spent in deep gratitude for the marvelous  munificence of our betters as said by MT 
      “We English, who are a marvelous people, are really very generous to Scotland.”
       
      Couldn’t have put it better myself.

    177. Dorothy Devine says:

      This video is not available in your country.  From youtube in Scotland that’s probably why it’s merrily playing on in Norway.
       
      I complained by e-mail to Channel 5 – no response.
       
      I was utterly shocked by the ignorant blonde and the equally ignorant others.

    178. Training Day says:

      Let’s ease up on the praise for Annabel Goldie. This is a woman who faithfully parroted the mantras of her Thatcherite masters for years, including the notion view that the creation of a Scottish Parliament was an unnecessary absurdity. Once created, and once she realised she could make a very good living from it, it quickly became less of an unnecessary absurdity. She’s now in the unelected House of Lords earning a very good living.

      On another note, wouldn’t it be simpler just to rename Good Morning Scotland ‘There’s a warning this morning about Scottish independence’? That does exactly what it says on the tin.

    179. TheGreatBaldo says:

      Let’s ease up on the praise for Annabel Goldie.
       
      Not praise Training Day…..just the observation that she is able to marshall her arguments and carries herself in debate very well certainly compared to other Unionists….like the SoS for Portsmouth.
       
       

    180. call me dave says:

      GMS this morning and Naughtie in shock and spitting feathers trying to cut off and interrupt MacWhirter on currency and the EU.  

      Sensible comment from guests about Scotland being independent and welcome in Europe  are not welcome and not what our license fee is for Mr Macwhirter!
       
      The BBC will be putting him on the ‘z’ list for appearances.
       
      Good for him!  (on this occasion) 
       

    181. TheGreatBaldo says:

      Did anyone else hear Jim Naughtie  on GMS screaming ‘No ! No !’ as Iain MacWhirter ripped into the EU and currency scare stories……
       
      Naughtie back pedalled and said no one was arguing that Scotland wouldn’t be a member of the EU only the terms where under dispute….MacW calmly pointed out that the rebate etc where going to be renegotiated by Cameron anyway so they couldnm’t guarantee the terms either !!!
       
      Poor Jim sounded like he was about to have a breakdown on air !!

    182. Ken500 says:

      Never trust a Tory/LibDem/Labour Unionists

      Learn from history.

      There is no such thing as Tory lite – only Tory. Remember these people who join these Parties are a tiny minority of the electorate.

      They say one thing and do another. That is why there is less equality/ democracy in the UK and most Politicans are held in contempt. There own self interest is at the heart.

      Don’t be deluded into this one’s nice or this one’s presentable. There is a common motive for inequality and hardship. Now being practised once again in the UK. The ONLY thing protecting Scotland is the SNP gov in Holyrood. Do not be deluded ANY other way. Learn from knowledge and experience.

    183. HandandShrimp says:

      Hi Macart
       
      I was quite enjoying the Guardian concern troll stuff. There were a fair few names there I haven’t seen before although one or two seemed to have long standing accounts but have only made a few posts before this week. Was the Telegraph down or something? Obviously Rider was there but Hootsman and Herald mainstays like AmicusAlba and Abie from Slovenia also put in an appearance. The White Paper really got them agitated. Amicus seems to have disappeared – he was griping because the Guardian Moods don’t allow personal abuse and certainly not from newbs (which seems to be his main substitute in lieu of a serious argument).
       
      I haven’t looked in on the Hootsman but I’m guessing the BofE’s offer of talks to Alex must have put blood pressures through the roof and into the stratosphere.    
       
       

    184. Ken500 says:

      The EU members applauded the prospect of Scotland’s continued membership of the EU.

    185. john king says:

      training days says
      “Let’s ease up on the praise for Annabel Goldie.”
       
      Like it or not there will be a need for a right of center party in an independent Scotland who would you like to see leading it. Ruth Davidson or Annabel Goldie, serious question ?

    186. Boorach says:

      I second TD’s motion re Annabel Goldie. The woman sat in front of a live audience at the Inverness debate and lied her head off to the nation re Scotland’s inability to have weathered the banking crisis

    187. john king says:

      Handandshrimp says
      “the BofE’s offer of talks to Alex must have put blood pressures through the roof and into the stratosphere.”
       
      Really? do tell?   
        

    188. Ken500 says:

      Why the emphasis is being put on a corrupt head of State, (who won’t be there for much longer) by the Westminster gov (who won’t be there much longer) and are at loggerheads with each, other is a mystery.

      Most of the MSM is a disgrace. The vile, bile being directed at Scotland is a disgrace and the DG of the BBC should be held to account.

    189. Ken500 says:

      * their own interest is at the heart, they do not mind how many innocent casualties they take or the lies they tell. Blair.

    190. john king says:

      Ken500 says
      “Never trust a Tory/LibDem/Labour Unionists
      Learn from history.”
       
      Couldn’t agree more Ken but after the dust has settled there is no point in the losing unionists banging a burst drum they will HAVE  to come up with policies designed for Scotland whether they like it or not or face permanent oblivion,
       if anyone will have to learn from history its the unionists, I don’t need reminding,
      until such times as there is no possibility of going back I wont be straying from the SNP anytime soon.
      but by the same token we cannot allow a scenario where a portion of the population is disenfranchised or that makes us no better than them, 
      I believe were bigger than that.

    191. Macart says:

      @Handandshrimp
       
      Yeh, it was quite fun watching them tie themselves in knots. Like the Rev says its good practice to take apart their arguments. Peter Bell gave one a complete roasting toward the end of thread which was fairly entertaining. ‘Course the Edward/Tenreiro piece this morning has taken the wind out of most of their sails. 😀
       
      I haven’t looked in on the Hootsman but I’m guessing the BofE’s offer of talks to Alex must have put blood pressures through the roof and into the stratosphere. 
       
      Missed that wee gem. That’ll certainly put the cat amongst the pigeons. Pigeons being the operative word. 🙂

    192. call me dave says:

      BoE will talk to Salmond on currency.archive.is/0GTP7

      Naughtie didn’t want to discuss this either but Macwhirter managed to get in his statement that ,really, the BoE was independent. . . ” No time for that now . Well we’ll move on to NATO”says Naughtie and the difficulties that face Scotland etc etc . . .
       
      Good old BBC.
       
       

    193. Linda's Back says:

      TheGreatBaldo 
       
      Yeah MacWhirter fairly put James Haughty on the back foot after attempting to put the Better Together case for the other contributor.

    194. Luigi says:

      “MacW calmly pointed out that the rebate etc where going to be renegotiated by Cameron anyway so they couldnm’t guarantee the terms either !!!”
       
      It’s about time we put this European rebate myth to bed.  Do people realise that the rebate benefited London at enormous cost to the UK regions?  Scotland suffered particularly.  People should be aware that the rebate was not just handed to the UK for nothing. No, no, Thatcher and Major had to sell us down the Swanee to get that their hands on that nice juicy rebate.  That’s why oil-rich Scotland has one of the worst road networks in western Europe, and don’t mention the fishing industry.  Good for London, though – more money to throw around down there. 

    195. Ken500 says:

      Goldie went to the Tory Party conference and condemned Scotland. Totally opportunist and fly. How else would a Tory survive in Scotland?

    196. john king says:

      ThegreatBaldo says
      “Not praise Training Day…..just the observation that she is able to marshall her arguments and carries herself in debate very well certainly compared to other Unionists….like the SoS for Portsmouth.”
       
      Precisely,
      there are a great many people I may dislike but have to express a level of respect for, and yes I get it that she toe’d the party like (what politician  hasn’t) but you just know there are some who believe the line being fed to them irrespective of the evidence (Alistair Carmichael) then there are some like Dennis Canavan who can think for themselves thank you very much and don’t need a three line whip to tell them what their conscience is I just happen to think AG may well be drifting slowly towards a more pragmatic approach which I think is more in keeping with her personality s’all
        

    197. caz-m says:

      BBC Scotland must be breaking some kind of laws here. They don’t even try to hide their extremely bias unionist views anymore.

      GMS presenter Jim Naughtie almost strangled MacWhirter for suggesting that there wouldn’t be a problem regarding with Scotland’s membership of Europe.

      It’s just one example of many that BBC Scotland love to “warn” us about. They seem to think that nothing can be negotiated and what ever any unionist says, then it must be true. Project Fear.

      O/T Just watched that Channel 5 video. FFS that is a shocker, I think that what you heard in that video is typical of conversations all over England.

    198. Edward says:

      Anyone notice the ‘news headlines’ at 08:30 on GMS?
      In particular they highlighted John Major’s assertion over Scotland’s membership of the EU. But for some inexplicable reason did not mention that the Governor of the Bank of England has stated that he was open to discussion with the Scottish Government
      http://archive.is/OBvdT

    199. Macart says:

      @Call me Dave
       
      Nice one. Its certainly got the politicians in a tizz. 😀

    200. Ken500 says:

      The rebate was negotiated at the time because of the UK net higher contribution to the CAP at th time. Times change. France/Germany make higher overall contributions. France/Italy pay disproportionally higher for the UK rebate. The UK rebate is two thirds of the UK net contribution., the year before.

      If Scotland was Independent,as an Independent country they would benefit more than they do now (as part of the UK) from EU membership.

      Where the EU falls down in not having proportionately equal representation. Equal members per proportion of population.

      Germany pays 20% more (the most) of costs. Contributions as a percentage of GDP per capita?
      The poorer countries gain more and pay less, but richer countries make up a higher proportion of members per population % of the entire community?

    201. call me dave says:

      Cage fighting format on STV for politicians to continue.
       
      http://archive.is/7F8uJ

    202. HandandShrimp says:

      Ho John
       
      The Govenor of the BofE said yesterday that he would be happy to have discussions with Alex on his currency proposals. The Hootsman has it as a front page article and headline. The on line story starts with a couple of lines about this then goes off on a tangent about John “more peas Norma” Major saying we can’t have a currency union because it will make extremely cross and he might knock some peas off his plate. They even have comments from Lamont and the unbelieveably irrelevant Rennie. When a story needs to have 90% of its content filled with people who have no say in the matter moaning the face off people I took it that the offer rattled them somewhat. I haven’t bothered reading the comments below because the Hootsman is not replete with sensible discussion at the best of times.

    203. Ivan McKee says:

      @ Luigi.
       
      Re the European Rebate, Does anyone have any numbers on that ?
       
      Wpuld like to understand that a bit better.
       
      thanks

    204. Training Day says:

      @johnking
      John, I would like to think that neither Goldie nor Davidson will be anywhere near the leadership of a right of centre party post-independence.  Both have demonstrated time and time again where their priorities lie, and they ain’t in Scotland or with the Scottish people.  In the case of Goldie, she acted as Thatcher’s message girl in the 80s and told us that the destruction of our manufacturing industry and the erosion of our civil liberties was for our own good.  She had the temerity at that time in her first public speech to the Tory conference to thank Thatcher for what the latter was doing to Scotland.  That won’t be forgotten.
       
      There are other, younger right of centre politicos who don’t have the toxic Thatcher baggage who could step up post-indy.  A mate of mine is one of them, and he’s pro-indy but can’t publicly say so… yet.

    205. call me dave says:

      Table here but once Westminster get the cash who knows.
      Will have a further look for breakdown within the UK.
       
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/8036097.stm

    206. Famous15 says:

      Only two problems for Scotland staying in EU .The first is we may fail the test of a free press and the second is the UKIP inspired referendum in 2017 to leave the EU.  BTW. a wee question in Westminster to the Foreign And Commonwealth office on what discussions has the British Government had or have instigated (so includes agents in the BBC) with other States or Institutions regarding the Scottish referendum.

    207. Wp says:

      Loved how last night Nicola took a back seat for most of the night after she demolished Carmichael again. Would leave liked someone to quote the GERS figures to dispel the myth that we are subsidy junkies. But there was enough from Eddie Reader to keep stairheed quiet.

      re- scotsman comments, I think it’s only one or two bitter unionists who post using numerous names because they all seem to go away at the same time and come back again en mass.

      time for some of you guys to get on and give em hell.

      i would but I’m barred!

    208. john king says:

      I really think hammering down the trapdoor with six inch bloody nails will just give these people no reason to want to change their views 
      we’re screwed if they win so we have nothing to lose kinda thing, 

      if they are given a reason to defect then they might just take the invitation and jump ship 

      If we start digging trenches we stand no chance of persuading the voters who although sympathetic to the yes cause still have a greater allegiance (god knows why) to the party their fathers voted for (and you all know that’s true)
       
      I watched Nicola in dFMq’s the other day expressing just such an invitation to Malcolm Chisholm and while he shook his head I swear he had his fingers crossed under his desk.

    209. Chic McGregor says:

      Paul, re last post. I have since found your blog and now realise why you left NNS.  Very sorry to hear about your partner’s ill health and wish you the best.
       
      It is, much less importantly of course, some relief to know that NNS is not having another regime change episode.
       
      Apologies all round for even asking.

    210. Jimbo says:

      The Spanish and London governments conspiring to hold Scotland back will backfire on them.
       
      When we restore our independence Spain and London will have to accede to the Scottish governments wishes – when they do so, Cameron and Rajoy, after all their bluff, will look very weak in the eyes of the world at having to roll over to the demands of a small country. 

    211. Luigi says:

      Re the European Rebate, Does anyone have any numbers on that ?
       
      Wpuld like to understand that a bit better.
       
      Sorry, Ivan, hard facts are difficult to come by. It’s all smoke and mirrors stuff.  Of course, politicians will spout figures telling you how much it benefits the UK (London), but I do believe that deals were done to ensure that certain regional funds could not be effectively accessed by the UK (something like the UK would have to pay a higher proportion?).  The effect of it was less money to the UK regions, compared to other countries.  Have you seen Ireland’s or Portugal’s motorway networks? Far superior to Scotland’s and paid for by European funds. Why did Scotland not qualify for the same level of European funding? The UK rebate was certainly not handed over for no concessions.
       
      I will dig around and let you know if I find more useful info.  There are a number of posters more qualified/informed  than me that may provide also something later.

    212. Ivan McKee says:

      @ call me Dave.
       
      Thanks, that’s a good start.
      Looks like the whole Rebate issue is a bit of a con. The value of the Rebate is much more than offset by the much reduced payments the UK gets from the EU (UK net contribution look to be twice that of France for example even including the Rebate).
       
      I’ll do some analysis on this.
      @ Luigi, anything you can come up with appreciated.

    213. Ken500 says:

      How is a proportion of the population disadvantaged under PR. Tories are advantaged under PR. There are 15 of them in Holyrood. Under FPTP there would be 2. Same with the rest of the Unionist opposition Parties in Holyrood. Scotland is disadvantaged within the Union because the make up of the Union is unequal, the Barnett Formula is unequal (not taking account of all revenues raised etc). It is the Union of a smaller country (made smaller) and a larger country. The distribution of finances is unequal and secretive. Based on what us being raised not what is being borrowed and spent. The notion that Scotland caused the Banking crash is ridiculous. Westminster/ City of London/deregulation caused the banking crash. The BoE as the lender of last resort? The BoE didn’t have enough reserves. China and Saudis were the lenders of last resort. The £ has fallen against the Euro. The EU as a whole is in better shape. The countries were suffered the most were borrowing or connected to London lending markets. Scotland borrowed 1/2 (pro rata) than the rest of the UK. Ie Mathewson RBS – Scotland borrowed £1Billion the rest of the UK (London, Midlands) borrowed £18Billion. The borrowing in Scotland was not such a major problem. It was the overpriced, Pozzi, properties schemes in the south.

      The lies, confusion and corruption is caused by the Westminster Gov aided by the UK State controlled media and the right wing Press, whose owners benefit from tax evasion in the City of London. The hard fought choice for people in Scotland, is do they want to continue to be a part of that.

    214. Ken500 says:

      Germany/France and Italy are higher net contributors, overall.

      There is a table/link posted which shows (if correct) the contributions.

    215. Gray says:

      GMS .. relevant piece 2:13:20-2:23:39
       
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03hyh2k

    216. Morag says:

      Ivan, you’re good with these sorts of figures.  If you can get your head round this rebate thing, an article on it on Business for Scotland would be a fantastic resource.

    217. Ken500 says:

      The £ devaluing against EU means the UK makes an increased in UK costs contribution.

    218. As far as I understood the rebate it was designed to keep more money in and under control by London rather than redistributing that money to the more rural areas throughout the rest of the UK.

    219. faolie says:

      Some excellent comments here about EU. That’s what we need, as the Rev is always reminding us, for DK’s having a wee peek here to see what actual real people are saying about the referendum.
       
      Talking of that, @macart posted an excellent link on Bateman’s “Non, mes amis” post yesterday to Graham Avery’s note for the HoC Foreign Affairs committee, HC 643 The foreign policy implications of and for a separate Scotland. A little academic, but chock full of the common sense, pragmatic steps that the EU will take following a Yes vote. Well worth a read. 

      http://archive.is/ItFpv

    220. Jim says:

      Just an aside story.
      The European Commision recently made an announcement on fishing where-in it confirmed that fish imports from three far flung countries would no longer be able to export fish to the EU due to not employing sustainable fishing despite repeated requests from the EU to do so. They also welcomed five countries to again start exporting fish to the EU after they took measures to ensure sustainable fishing. Previously their exports were banned.
      During the annoucement it was also revealed that the EU imports 65% of its fish. A percentage which would substatially increase were Scotland not part of the EU along with our fishing waters.

    221. John Hannah says:

      Anybody know where I can find out or do you already know how many or how big the Spanish fishing fleet is and what proportion of it operates in Scottish waters?
       
      Or as a portion of catch what is attributed to Spain?
       
      Thank you kindly.

    222. Ivan McKee says:

      @ Morag.
       
      Good plan, I’m having a look at it
       
      @ Ken – Good point re £/Eur FX rates.

    223. Barontorc says:

      Excellent article Paul and good to see you here on this site. I’ve just listened to the GMS section between Naughtie and McWhirter and if this performance by Naughtie does not paint in large letters what the BBC’s agenda is nothing will. I’ve also seen on NNS the appeal to withdraw payment of the BBC licence and say well done – we cannot keep paying the BBC to stab us in the back by mis-using its broadcasting powers. They are not merely reporting political comment they are in fact espousing political comment from the UK establishment and indeed denigrate SNP/YES/SG/AS at almost every opportunity. This is anti-democratic and cannot be tolerated. All funding of the BBC should be stopped immediately similar to the power of refusal by the consumer with the MSM.

    224. MajorBloodnok says:

      Morag says: There’s really no point me saying I’m in love with Patrick Harvie, practically speaking.
       
      I know, you’re too good for him.  It would never work, and he knows it.

    225. Bill says:

      There’s a kind of muddled logic behind a lot of the arguments in this article. It’s the idea that because something is “mutually beneficial” we don’t need to worry about it. In reality, the fact that it’s mutually beneficial to Spain and Scotland for Scotland to join the EU is a bit besides the point. Only the most zealous members of the No side are suggesting that Spain would block Scotland’s membership indefinitely, the issue is that if we don’t automatically join the EU then our membership is up for negotiation. In other words, the issue is the price we’ll pay for membership (potentially losing the rebate, the Schengen opt out, the right to opt in and out of Justice and Home Affairs measures, and so on).

      It’s the exact same issue with the currency union. Saying it’s mutually beneficial doesn’t get us very far, the key factor is the conditions that would be attached to a currency union. For it to be in our interest we’d need the Bank of England to act as lender of last resort, they might insist on fiscal co-ordination that would limit our fiscal policy, they might insist on a budget scrutiny mechanism, they might throw in our share of the national debt as part of the discussion. These are issues that can transform a currency union from being the simple no-brainer the SNP are portraying it as to something that isn’t in our interest at all.

      There are valid arguments against these points, but the line about it being “mutually beneficial” isn’t one of them. If I walk into Tesco and tell them it would be in our mutual benefit for me to buy my shopping from them then I’d be correct, but that doesn’t mean I can dictate the price I pay at the checkout.

    226. Faltdubh says:

      Gray,
       
      Thanks for the link.
       
      Hahahaha – lots of ”Uhh”, ”Well” from Naughtie when MacWhirter talks of the BOE and the Spanish PM denying the Catalans a referendum.

    227. Tamson says:

      @Pedro:
       
      ‘I’m a proud Scot’ is a verbal tic along the lines of ‘some of my best friends are black/gay/Jewish’.
       
      It’s almost always a clear indicator that the speaker lacks confidence in their own argument.

    228. @scotvote says:

      Probably a bit late in the day to post to this now. But, Gibraltar, what is the angle here between Spain & UK? Second; the EU doesn’t let ANYONE leave. That’s there thing right, I mean if they effectively denied Greece leaving at the height of their problems, there is NO WAY, and I mean NO WAY that the “powers” that run the EU; effectively Germany and France, will let Scotland be “excluded” from EU institutions.  To believe otherwise is to put your head where JoLa puts hers.

    229. Ken500 says:

      Don’t know about the West but there is no evidence/account of Spanish boats in the NE of Scotland. Can they afford the fuel?, because of the recession.

      Scottish fishermen and farmers export beef and fish to French/Spanish markets. The recession has hit prices but it is still a large export Market for high cost quality products. The fish lorries leave the NE every night, along with standard process products going into retail markets.

    230. Ken500 says:

      Re: EU figures

      Check out

      @ Xander 29 November 2013. 3.5am

      Give tables etc. If correct.

      Germany pays €25Billion, France/Italy €20Billion, They get a higher CAP payment.

      UK €15Billion. Less CAP. The document claims France/Italy take the cut for the UK rebate.

      All are net Contributors.

    231. Bubbles says:

      I posted earlier and completely failed to thank Paul for his effort here. Paul, thank you.
       
      It’s very difficult to stay on-topic on this site because it sometimes feels that everything is on-topic, if you catch my drift. Anyway, I shall endeavour to try harder in future.

    232. Neil says:

      How can “Scotland would be a net contributor to EU funds” be true if Scotland currently runs a deficit? This is genuine question as I am a little confused by the economic arguments of both the Yes and No campaigns but in any case suggesting Spain is eying up Scotland for its financial clout seems a little conceited. Also is there any reason why we should care what the Spanish PM thinks?



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