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Wings Over Scotland

What women don’t want

Posted on August 19, 2013 by

Forgive us another rummage around in our poll data, but we didn’t do a lot of study into gender differences in our first wave of analysis, and we were struck by something this morning as we idly browsed through the question about what Scots were scared of.


Along with the fact that women were almost twice as likely – 38% to 22% – to be undecided about their referendum vote* as men (and indeed about most other votes), it was one of the areas where the differences between the sexes were most stark.

As it turned out, women were:

Much LESS scared of Conservative governments (46%, against 59% of men)

Much MORE scared of terrorist attack (39% to 28%)

Slightly MORE scared of North Korea (8% to 6%)

TWICE as scared of Iran (6% to 3%)

EQUALLY scared of China (4% and 4%)

HALF as scared of space monsters (3% to 6%)

TWICE as scared of Russia (4% to 2%)

Slightly LESS scared overall (26% said “none of the above”, vs 22% of men)

We have, frankly, no idea what to make of that information, but we found the first two figures the most surprising (as well as the most statistically significant).

It’s often said that women are more sceptical of independence because they manage household budgets, do the bulk of caring (either domestically or professionally) and fear upheaval, but we’d have thought that would make them extra-sensitive to the wholesale havoc being wreaked on welfare and the NHS by the Tories.

And we racked our brains over the terrorism stat for a while until we linked it to the higher fear figure for Iran – could both be the result of an (understandable) aversion to the anti-women aspects of fundamentalist Islam? We’re just guessing, of course. Perhaps some of our female readers can enlighten us.


* Figures from the closest question we asked:

Yes 45% No 32% Don’t Know 22%

Yes 24% No 38% Don’t Know 38%

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169 to “What women don’t want”

  1. I saw on the Alexa break down that “Males are under-represented at this site”.
    That was a bit surprising as was the conclusion for that bite of observation that “Confidence: low”.
    I’m confused, now.

  2. Laura says:

    I can’t answer your question as such, I just want to say that I am appalled that so many of my sex seem to be afraid of Independence. Many will be mothers like me. To not put your child’s future ahead of anything else is unforgiveable and continuing as part of the UK gives our children little hope for the future. Independence is the only chance we have. It may not be Utopia but it will be a DAMN sight better than the alternative.

    Oh, and I bet we are more scared of spiders too 😉

  3. Gayle says:

    Here is my take:
    Tories – not much of a threat to a Scottish Government, however, if there were to be a no vote then it would be. So maybe it’s a mixed opinion on that one.
    Terrorist attack – Is that asking domestic or foreign? 
    North Korea, Iran, China and Russia – possibly put down to MSM/BBC coverage. If so, then it reveals more about the way they (who voted) are getting their information.
    Space Monsters – umm bad kebab? More worrying is that twice as many men were scared of them haha.
    Less scared overall – pretty much what I’d expect.
    The final poll result I would put down to more women waiting on the white paper to find out what the possibilities of an independent Scotland are and the effects it will have on ordinary peoples day to day lives. Once those answers are given then they may feel more inclined to state how they will vote. 

  4. cynicalHighlander says:

    Maybe women are more trusting of the MSM than males.

  5. Embradon says:

    I believe that part of the problem is the malign influence of the Daily Mail.
    A female friend of mine reads it, both hard copy and electronically, and while claiming to disregard the propaganda, she is none the less exposed, if only subliminally, to the toxic headlines.
    It seems a lot of women read the “social” columns – all gossip, celebrity tittle tattle, health scares and fad diets as far as I can see.
    I can see no interest for male readership in Scotland (though some claim to buy it for the crossword then probably read the gossip too) so I guess the horrible rag is disproportionately read by women.
    That might be an interesting subject for a question in the next poll.

  6. Bob Howie says:

    Well this is simple, 100% of me DGAF

  7. Albalha says:

    Isn’t it a good idea to know why so many people are still undecided, what may be shaping their views?
    I am assuming DGAF starts …..don’t give a …..apologies if I’ve misunderstood, because hey I’m just a woman.

  8. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I saw on the Alexa break down that “Males are under-represented at this site”.”

    …relative to other websites. Internet use in general is still heavily male-dominated. All that stat showed was that Wings is slightly LESS male-biased than other sites. Our readership is still very male-heavy, but not as much as the internet overall is.

  9. The Flamster says:

    As the spider catcher in my household it is the male who is terrified of them 🙂
    Amongst my female friends not one of them has ever engaged with me about Independence. I mainly debate with men who say they are voting No. I think women (obviously not all) are less interested in politics.  One woman said to me a few months ago that she is voting No because we will lose the NHS! Also many people do not understand the different between reserved and devolved matters.  Many people think that whatever is happening in the NHS in England and Wales is happening here, not realising that it is different in Scotland.  I feel that the NHS may be an issue for women, as it is always being attacked in the Scottish media although I don’t know for definite just my thoughts.

  10. M4rkyboy says:

    I am too scared to say anything on this topic.

  11. Douglas Gregory says:

    Better the devil you know

  12. MajorBloodnok says:

    So the consensus is forget the question about spacemonsters, it should have been about spiders (from Mars) instead.

  13. bunter says:

     @ The Flamster
    I think you have something regards the Scottish NHS and the percieved threat (wrongly) of independence.  That might be the reason that NNS have found  figures showing that FOI requests on Scotlands NHS from the BBC have rocketed 700% since 2011 and Scottish Labours FOI requests for same,  show an equally startling increase since. Maybe project fear have realised that there are some gains to be made by attacking the SNPs record re the NHS and also a link to how women, in particular, perceive as to who will best protect it.

  14. rabb says:

    NHS is a good point actually. Even my old man had to be educated on the difference between the NHS and NHS Scotland. He thought they were the same thing. He had no idea it was an entirely separate entity in Scotland or that it was run and administered wholly in Scotland.
    I imagine that if women think that such a safety net as the NHS is at risk then they will naturally er on the side of caution.

    Perhaps if more emphasis was put on those insecurities rather than the ‘more fairer country’ or ‘more prosperous’ arguments we would see a change in attitude?
    Just a thought.

  15. Joybell says:

    I does seem that women are generally a bit less interested in politics.  Are there any stats to tell us if women are more or less likely to vote in ordinary elections?

  16. Ghengis says:

    @ The Flamster is correct, the NHS (Scotland and England versions) is always being attacked in the media. particularly by the BBC.
    Over at today:
    NHS Freedom of Information requests from BBC have surged since SNP took office
    By pure coincidence Tory Lord Patten works for a private healthcare firm and is the Chairman at the BBC trust. Mind you, many of our unelected Lords happen to work for private healthcare firms. Hence NHS in England is being privatised apace which will impact on our NHS budget in due course if we are daft enough to vote no. England is heading for a privatised NHS with health insurance for those that can afford it as in the USA. (The most expensive healthcare system in the world).

  17. Tony Little says:

    I think the polling was interesting, but have no real idea why these differences are there.  At the risk of being classified as a misogynist, I believe that Men and Women ARE different in many ways.  Of course not in all ways and there are exceptions.  But on “caring” issues, like the NHS or social welfare, I would have expected a slightly different response by men and women.  
    Maybe it will soon be time for a more hard-nosed release of information from YES Scotland about the PRESENT impact of rUK policy on health, education, welfare etc.  It will of course be perceived and presented by the No-Better campaign as ‘negative’ but it will have to be done at some point.  Not too critical, simply pointing out the present reality.
    Whether that can wait until the 16 week media neutral period I am not sure.

  18. handclapping says:

    As Monika Lewinski would say, its the economy stupid.
    When you have to feed the brutes 3/7/365, and its hard enough already, then where the next meal, and the next and the next, is coming from is scary. Yes times are hard but we haven’t had to open a food bank here yet. Labour would do the same as the Conservatives, so there is no alternative. We’ll cope somehow.
    I don’t think its scared as such, its that independence is not yet seen as a viable alternative. If we hammer the message that the UK is going down the tubes and there is more to come, till 2018 at least, then the 9.9% taxes 9.3% spend does look better. All the silly mobile roaming stories should be covered by the 126 countries that became independent since the Lebanon in 1943, some of them a lot smaller than us, have managed, so why wouldn’t we?

  19. Triangular Ears says:

    Rabb, I work in the NHS in Scotland and believe me, there are countless people here who have no idea about the structure of the NHS either.  I have had to educate quite a few people, some who should know better, that it is already an entirely Scottish operation and always has been.
    I have heard people complaining about things going on in the English NHS as if they are happening here too and need to point out that the current Scottish Government is preventing these things happening here.
    I also try to educate around Scotland’s funding and how England’s drive towards privatising their NHS is a massive threat to ours since our block grant will be cut massively as a direct response, putting our NHS and jobs at risk.  Almost nobody is aware of how this works.  I have been educating quite a few on this.  I think it’s starting to get through.

  20. Albalha says:

    Here are figures from the 2010 GE, men 2 points above women – 66/64

  21. Albalha says:

    Looking at that table, I posted, the turnout figures are interesting. The youngest group at below 50% and rising with each age band.
    I wonder if the referendum will follow that pattern.

  22. Murray McCallum says:

    I think the BBC are quite right to spend our money to find out how the separatist coup “government” ensconced in Edinburgh are getting away with portraying something run from Scotland as being better than that run from London. The science of genetics tells you that is simply not possible.
    The BBC have a vital role to play in this as Scottish patients, relatives, and NHS staff are too thick, or maybe too drunk, to raise questions themselves.
    My cunning solution to end the need for BBC FOI requests – allow relatives and friends to visit patients in hospital. Furthermore, end the universal practice of making all Scottish NHS patients and staff sign confidentiality agreements.

  23. gordoz says:

    For the ladies & mothers who may be still dithering over ‘fear factors’,
    Remember this  –
    By voting YES and aspiration for a new egalitarian resource rich Scotland, you have the chance to sort out this financial mess for your children.
    By voting No, you opt for ‘more of the same’ and the likelihood of continuing a bankrupt union with the UK, where your best chances mean you may sort out this financial mess in time for your grandchildren.
    It’s your choice ladies; your vote will make the difference

  24. Albalha says:

    Women are also more likely to be keen on the monarchy, another reason that some may be uneasy. Particularly my mum’s generation, 75 plus, well those of them who are monarchy fans.

  25. Holebender says:

    All that stat showed was that Wings is slightly LESS male-biased than other sites.
    That’s because you’re an infamous misogynist! 😉

  26. Caledonalistic says:

    There’s a general lack of awareness that Scotland has its own NHS, in the same way there’s a lack of awareness that Scotland has, and has always had, it’s own legal and education systems.  My gut feeling is that the lack of awareness is broadly equal across both sexes, but these are all areas that are likely to influence a woman’s decision making more so than a mans.  Men tend to be fixated with things like macro economics and defence.  Ironically, I’d argue those are two areas that are of least significance and by that I mean there would be least tangible impact on peoples everyday lives through gaining control of those areas.  The general population absolutely do not care what our position in NATO will be.  
    Yes should focus more on these areas and explain what options are opened up by Scotland gaining control of those areas.  I’d argue that the so-called ‘big questions’ aren’t particularly interesting or relevant to women in particular but nor are they to the politically unengaged in general.      

  27. Agrippinilla says:

    I can understand the figures relating to fear of various attacks, as we mothers tend to think of our children in these situations and our fears for their future. That would also account for the lower figure for invasion by space monsters, which most mothers know we could handle with aplomb.
    But on the overall independence question, most of my female friends are all Yes voters already. It’s hard to say why others are No or undecided, as we don’t know what they will base their decision on.
    For some of us, independence is about being a nation again, making our own decisions for better for worse. Other might need more reassurance that the country could prosper, for some it may be about their person ambitions, or their ambitions for their children. Still others may just feel we are too embedded in the UK to make the upheaval of independence worthwhile. Also, as The Flamster says above, many may just not know what is already devolved and what isn’t, and therefore imagine costs and difficulties which simply don’t exist. 
    Without knowing what it would take to persuade each person (male or female) over to our side, it’s hard to define why some people have a better-the-devil-you-know attitude to our country’s future.
    Perhaps that may be something to consider including in the next poll, Rev? What factors might influence people’s views on independence, what reassurances they want (from either side) about Scotland as a nation. Or even if they consider Scotland a nation.

  28. Archie [not Erchie] says:

    @ Flamster and other fearless lady spidercatchers I am of the ‘runaway quickly’ brigade.
    At the risk of opening up a can of worms the women’s magazine producers have already identified their market quite successfully. As far as I know none of them are particularly political in persuasion but are more ‘social’ as Embradon said above [1:28 pm]
    So what is the way to a woman’s heart? Or should I rephrase that and ask a woman where does your heart lie? How can a tunnel-visioned male understand the multi-tasking woman? Us males get all het up about the next bellowing stag while the women saw it miles away, discussed it, dismissed it and moved on.
    To answer two of my own questions – IMO the way to a womens heart is to make her feel SECURE. If the promise of an Independent Scotland can show on all counts that the nest, children, and future prosperity is SECURITY then the result is an inevtiable YES.
    I think the Rev’s statistics prove my point.

  29. Jenny says:

    An article in The Independent says we know less about politics overall:
    I hate to say it but I do believe women are somehow uninterested in politics in general.
    From my own experience and loose thoughts I think this a gender role thing. Are we ladies actively encouraged to become political? I remember a man telling an ex of mine that he didn’t know how he could go out with someone so opinionated after I tore his argument that climate change didn’t exist apart…  I wasn’t a dick about it p.s. and he didn’t say it in a nice way. How many women could instantly think of an influential female political thinker without having previously researched it? (That they could admire…. as in, not Maggie). Maybe I was off that day in school but I don’t remember anyone really being covered, not even Mary Barbour. Someone above mentioned the association between women and “caring” issues like the NHS. Now, I’m not saying that comment is purposefully “misogynist” BUT I would wonder why we are still thought to be the caring sex? When a women strongly argues her position is she harping on, being overly “emotional”..? I would agree with the commenter above who noted that most of her political discussions are with men. Mine too. I wonder if women are worried about appearing as any of the words above… maybe too dominant or something.
    Anyway – like I said, loose (and unorganised!) thoughts on a massive and interesting topic

  30. ianbrotherhood says:

    Some undecided, regardless of gender, may find that this helps when tackling such big decisions:

  31. gordoz says:

    I concur with other contributors so far.
    I have a sister-in-law (working in Scotland) who is a midwife and swears only Labour will save her NHS. She doesn’t trust Alex Salmond or the Nats (as she puts it).
    Can you believe it?
    Its the same with the majority of Labour voters I’ve come across; who largely see the logic of independence but want to give ‘Ed’ a chance ???? How many more chances do they need ???
    Clueless tribal attitudes are a real barrier where Labour are the issue.
    It would take a Labour MSP to come out and speak the unspeakable (cross the chamber) and support independence. Maybe Johann Lamont is practicing such a speech and that why we haven’t seen her. Don’t hold yer breath.

  32. Lanarkian says:

    I suspect that most male opinions on this question are as useful as a chocolate fireguard, so I hope more women contribute to this thread. For what it’s worth, my experience across a considerable number of YES events, is that women require more information, more dialogue (one on one) and greater forensic scrutiny of the facts. Once they go through this process, on their own terms, they become our greatest advocates.
    Pro-Indy women are much more effective in dialogue with other women – and they do it in a manner that is not the usual male construct of debate. The significant absence of women (or prevalence of males) on Wings and other such forums should tell us that we need to consider different terms of engagement for those blessed with the absence of a Y-chromosome.

  33. Thomas William Dunlop says:

    I would urge strong caution on any attempt to make correlations about support one way or another on anything but the first two questions about Tories and terorists.
    To me the small numbers that express an opinion is so small that the values would be swamped by background noise. A concept called false positives, something that plagues data where many tests are applied- statistically the more the question is asked, the more likely your are getting a result-however it is a result of randomness and must be discounted
    The most interesting thing for me is that folk of both sexes reckon that both Tories and terorists are both real and tangible threats to their security. Therefore in a years time it looks likely that the Tories will be returned to office, the more likely the undecideds will vote for independence

  34. Luigi says:

    Based on previous form, the two groups least supportive of independence, women and older people, are actually more likely to turn out in greater numbers to vote.
    We still have work to do, friends.

  35. ianbrotherhood says:

    Anyone who believes that ‘Ed’ is ever going to occupy No 10 is certifiable.

  36. gordoz says:

    Questions from undecided women I have come across centre on ‘Reassurance’. This  is a word that comes up again and again.
    Just what is so safe and assured about the current & recent UK regimes ?
    Trident renewal ?
    Illegal Wars ?
    Financial Crash ?
    Corruptionat westminster /MP expenses ?
    What is so appealing about the Union ?

  37. cheryl says:

    My personal opinion is that there is very little engagement with women beyond women as mothers. There’s little attempt to reach us as individuals in a male-dominated environment like politics and as such it just tends to pass a lot of us by. I genuinely dont know one woman who is interested in politics and the referendum by extension.

  38. Jon D says:

    A must read here;
    on James Kelly’s take on the Rev’s interview on GMS
    (Sorry if it’s been linked previously)

  39. Cath says:

    My own feeling is that women are generally less comfortable with conflict. So while a lot of men will happily wade into a very charged political debate and join in the shouting, women will often retreat from that. We like to have cost chats where we find consensus and when the debate gets too heated will change the subject. Most of my female friends are pro-indy but they won’t talk about it.
    So ironically, I have the feeling however bad and evil Tory governments are, they appear “nicer” people, more reasonable, calmer and better to debate with than many of the Glasgow hard men types Labour tend to have. I can well understand, even as a Tory-hater and erstwhile Labour voter (and Labour member, once, briefly in the early Blair days before I woke up, which was not long after the 1997 election…) why women in Scotland might be less scared of Tories for that reason. If I had to debate the referendum I’d far rather do it politely with a Tory who’s implacably opposed to independence, devolution etc than with a Labour person who appears to have no real principles and is likely to get angry.
    I also suspect that was a lot of Blair’s appeal – women saw him as more calm, reasonable, consensus-seeking. At least until Iraq when he showed his true colours and we then had the more typical Glasgow Labour hard man like John Reid shouting at us.
    With the independence referendum, mostly it’s been Labour vitriol, Tory patronising and, to an extent, the SNP and Yes people retaliating. And a lot of angry passion on both sides. Hence a lot of women retreating from the debate and being undecided about which bunch men they want shouting at us and each other, and whether we want them doing so as part of the UK or an independent Scotland.

  40. Caledonalistic says:

    I recall listening to Colin Fox on the Indy podcast (a good listen) explaining that he wasn’t a politician, and I’d relate it to this discussion.  Women and people in general have nothing to be ashamed about by not being interested in politics.  Politics is gamesmanship by another guise.  You don’t need politics to make public services work, or ensure a high standard of education for all.  Think about it.  Both we and the campaigns are obsessed with the apparently profound questions surrounding our status in NATO, currency agreements, embassies and so on.  I’ll argue that the outcomes of these discussions will have far less effect on the everyday lives of Scots than, for example, the tax system, local governance, social welfare, and so on.  
    The idea that we have to ensure that women and undecideds in general become more informed about ‘key issues’ is a red herring in my view.  These discussions are anathema to the people we’re trying to convince.  It has nothing to do with ignorance but more so deliberate avoidance of those issues.  We’re all too often victims of our own intellectual snobbery when, in many cases, it’s those of us who consider ourselves informed who’re completely missing the point.  

  41. Jenny says:

    “My personal opinion is that there is very little engagement with women beyond women as mothers”

  42. handclapping says:

    You’ve got a point there – politics, its boring. That’s why BT are busy on Salmond’s Referendum etc, deliberately conflating the referendum with politics. Its not politics, its about who choses. I know that you go shopping with friends to get their opinions but its you that choses to go with them or not. The referendum will get us out of the situation where Westminster choses like our mum did, and all the wrong choices too, when we were 14.

  43. Taranaich says:

    My personal opinion is that there is very little engagement with women beyond women as mothers. There’s little attempt to reach us as individuals in a male-dominated environment like politics and as such it just tends to pass a lot of us by. I genuinely dont know one woman who is interested in politics and the referendum by extension.

    I think you’re right, and I also think there’s something very insidious about it all.
    My suspicion is that the main reason women are more undecided/no is a direct correlation to the mainstream media/”society” being more no. Even after decades of suffrage and women’s right movements, women in Scotland, the UK, and the western world in general are still suffering from generations of oppression ingrained into them, and this is fully advantageous to the No campaign.
    Women are the “Weaker Sex”: they need “protecting” from all the dangers in the world. Women are “more emotional” than Men, and allegedly don’t think as rationally or logically: let us make the decisions for you. A woman’s place is in the home, looking after the children, to think small: don’t worry your pretty heads about the Big World, leave that to us. Sound familiar?
    If Scots are “too wee, too poor, too stupid” to be independent, then women are “too weak, too emotional, too negligible” to vote for independence. Even in this day and age, women get a raw deal, and it’s made harder because when you think about it, how could so many women not buy into the lies they’ve already been fed? How many women do think wearing a short skirt makes a woman partially responsible for her own sexual assault? How many women do think men should be paid more, that women shouldn’t be involved in the sciences/politics/anything of merit? So many do, because that’s been the narrative for so long, it’s hard to challenge.
    The reasons to vote Yes just keep mounting, don’t they?

  44. John Lyons says:

    Ignorance is bliss.
    A freind of mine works for the new Police Scotland. Had to explain to a senior officer based in the central belt why an accident investigator based in Inverness had taken four hours to get to a crash in Shetland. Later that week he also had to explain to another senior officer why the accident investigator couldn’t catch a train to Stornoway.
    My favourite of his stories was the one about the Senior officer who refused to take a hire car to Orkney for a conference. He planned to walk to the venue. Unfortunately the venue was 48 miles away from his hotel…
    Even clever people can be ignorant of facts.

  45. Albalha says:

    I contribute here and my only real concern is that we secure a YES vote. As I’ve said before contributors to this site come from a diverse range of background and have differing views on a range of issues.
    We agree on YES, after that the fun can begin. But I am worried that too much emphasis on ‘knowing the answers’ before the vote has taken place is potentially damaging. We can’t know quite a lot and shouldn’t be afraid to say so and let people know what we do know. 
    Simply speaking to counter the BT mantra …..It’s not all about the SNP, chances are the currency will work out and the NHS in Scotland’s only chance of survival is with a YES vote.

  46. Caledonalistic says:

    I agree with Cheryl’s point too.  We assume that women voters are only interested in babies and shopping bills.  “Let’s not bore the poor dear with discussions about interest rates.  Let’s talk about free childcare.”  The reason women are turned off from politics isn’t because it’s complicated but because it’s constantly bogged down in arguments like where you should measure from to the tip.  It’s boys playing at grown ups, and the reason its mostly boys is because most politicians today never had to grow up.  They moved from public school at Eton to public school at Westminster without ever having has a proper job and the rules are basically the same.  It’s the tone rather than the content. 

  47. scottish_skier says:

    Project fear and aggression is targeted at the female electorate. The polls show men are largely sold and it is women who are more reticent and have got cold feet to a far greater extent over the last year, putting Yes back behind the N.
    BT are aware of this hence they have really upped the fear/aggression stakes in an attempt to batter the female electorate into submission. A very stupid tactic in my opinion and one which is highly likely to backfire spectacularly. Women may be more likely to step back from conflict/try to avoid it, but they are as brave if not braver than men when it comes to the crunch. And boy do they really hate being lied to.
    That aside, if I was pro-union the polls would have me bricking it. Why?

    Well, if I was to ask where the biggest swing is, i.e. where Yes gets most of its votes from, you might imagine from Don’t Knows? Nope, they come from No. The greatest swing by far is between Yes and No.
    Y vs N has the strongest correlation of all in polls. People who said Yes before have recently been saying No. These people won’t vote No though as they are Yes people, otherwise they’d never have said Yes in the past.
    The correlation between Y and DK is more modest but evident; so you do get some people transferring here. Yes can gain from DK.
    There’s no almost no correlation between DK and N which will additionally put the wind up BT; no DKs are turning to N.
    Basically, you have a core No vote that won’t go to DK or Yes come hell or high water; 30% at best.
    You have a lot of DK’s who when they finally make their mind up, opt for Yes. Sometimes they swing back to DK, but they’re Yes people if they vote.
    Then you have a sizable chunk (up to 15%) who say Yes then say No depending on how nervous they are  and/or how shy. The shy only appear in non-anonymous polls (telephone and face to face).
    This is why BT are in a panic. Their ‘silent majority who love the union’ don’t exist. The polls are over-egging the No. The No is weak and susceptible to a large reverse swing to Yes. They’re not getting any DK’s on board. 

  48. Cath says:

    “Women may be more likely to step back from conflict/try to avoid it, but they are as brave if not braver than men when it comes to the crunch. And boy do they really hate being lied to.”
    Bang on SS. Not liking conflict for its own sake, and tending to seek consensus doesn’t mean “not able to fight if the need arises” or “fearty” or “easy to beat into submission”. Far from it.
    In fact, when real change happens it’s very often because the women have been been pushed too far and decided en masse they’re going to fight for it. Women change things more easily than men do when they get behind it.
    If you have any doubt of that, look back to 19th century newspapers. Both female sufferage and home rule for Scotland are being discussed in the late 1800s; Kier Hardy was involved in debates in the House of Commons for both in the early 19th.
    One has actually happened – back in the 1920s. One hasn’t.

  49. Caledonalistic says:

    The point I was trying to make earlier was that those major ‘profound’ questions will be resolved one way or another and I’d argue that they’ll have minimal effect on the living standards of most Scots.  

    Quite simply, they don’t merit the attention they get.  I’m thinking that’s also what you’re saying.

    I agree that less focus should be put on giving answers to questions simply because No keep asking them.  Instead, the focus should be put on how Scots would be more engaged in helping to come up with those answers.  How will central government work?  Will Holyrood just continue to function as it does now?  How about local government?  What about board representation of public bodies and institutions?  

    I think the SNP have made a mistake by trying to emphasise how little would change.  I know why they’ve done it but I’d have preferred they gambled on playing to peoples’ aspirations and need for change. 

    In short, less focus on specific answers and more focus on how those answers could be arrived at and how Scots in general will be engaged in the process is the way to go in my view.  

  50. les wilson says:

    I was speaking recently to a woman about Independence and was shocked by her replies.
    1, She voted Tory, why ? because she thought M.Thatcher was a strong woman and despite coming from a mixed labour, SNP, family background, she probably still would vote that way.
    2. She had no idea that Scotland had only 1 Tory MP.
    3. She had no idea about who had good policies and who did not.
    4. She disliked A.Salmond AND Nicola Sturgeon ( when I asked why, she said,that’s how all the papers portray them!) She was unconcerned when I told her “that is exactly what the papers want you to think.”
    5. I explained the many things the Scottish government have done to help people, she knew a few things and was surprised when I told her more.
    6. She new virtually nothing about the Independence movement and was not very interested. she would vote NO, but was unsure why. I asked if that was a result of reading all the negatives in the press, she agreed that it might have something to do about it.

    While she was at first set in her ways, she promised that nearer the time of the vote she would watch and listen to what is said and decide from there.

    I find the complacent attitude she showed to be worrying, if in any way typical, in either the Tory or labour female voters.
    If they do not TRY and find out then they  will make their vote based on the party they traditionally follow. 

    So ignorance of the facts and the truth ( if she is anything to go by ) and with little desire to find out, are what we are up against, or so it would seem.

    However, I can’t help but feel that much greater emphasis on how Independence will actually effect them and their families, may then sway a YES vote.

  51. Albalha says:

    Agreed, the saddest, maybe a tad dramatic, part for me is people should be excited, this is a big deal for those of us who live in Scotland just now, a once in a lifetime opportunity. Anyway we can only hope it goes the YES way. 

  52. scotchwoman says:

    Les Wilson – that was an ignorant person you were talking to but it could equally have been a male giving you those answers! Either way, it’s disappointing but fairly common. Over a year left to swing them round….

  53. Andy-B says:

    Interesting figures Rev.
    Could be women are more cautious than men by nature, or maybe women dont particulary like change, as for the terrorism factor, I blame the MSM, for hyping it up.
    Quite frankly though Ive been married, for umpteen years and I still cant figure women

  54. Hetty says:

    I agree Laura, you would think women would be able to see the damage being done by westminster and want to distance themselves from that asap not least for the sake of future generations. The con-dems’ attack on the poor and disabled is surely enough to encourage women to really think about what the future holds if they choose to vote ‘no’ to Scottish Independence. Some women not otherwise informed, have to start thinking and stop reading about celebrities and slagging each other off for what they wear etc…I admit, my house is not so clean at the mo and my excuse is that I have to follow what’s going on regards Independence, which takes time, but it’s crucial and comes first above many other things that I could or should be doing…
    In a recent conversation with a female friend I don’t often see, she was very ‘undecided’ and her views and worrries about Indy and to my surprise her idea that it’s the immigrants’ influence that is changing attitudes towards the disabled for the worse(!) were quite obviously a result of reading the msm, and watching riubbish tv, plus the so called news and believing it all, which is very worrying. I think women generally have less time and/or interest in informing themselves. They don’t like talking politics, I am losing friends, both male and female for being so verbal and having an opinion on Independence. One or two women I know are absolutely pro Indy, other than that it seems taboo among men and women to discuss it. 

  55. Cath says:

    I think the SNP have made a mistake by trying to emphasis how little would change.
    I’m in two minds about that. On the one hand, there is a natural fear of too much change too fast. An independent Scotland is exciting, partly because it’s a blank page; partly because it seems to blindingly obvious and once you’ve realised that you can’t help wonder why the hell we’re not independent already.
    When you start getting into thinking about “then we’ll have another referendum for the monarchy, and one for the EU, then we’ll have a big argument about….” personally I start to get a headache. After this campaign, the absolute last thing I want to envisage for the early days of a new nation is people shouting at each other about whether we keep the monarch or not. That actually puts me off the whole idea of independence. Which is a shame as it shouldn’t – I’d love to have a choice on the monarchy. But I just know the “debate” on that will make this one look reasonable and friendly and most normal people won’t touch it with a bargepole. 
    So the more gradualist approach, as the SNP are taking, where we take independence, but not too much more will change immediately is a re-assuring one for a lot of people, I think. But that said, the idea “nothing will change” after independence is entirely wrong and needs to be countered. Everything will change because we’ll have the power and ability to change it. Whether we do or not is a change.
    One thing I’d like to see all on the Yes side really press home is changes which might not be obvious to some people but which would probably be hugely popular. For example, we will have a Scottish passport; Scotland will be a real country on drop-down menus; Scotland is not currently in the EU, NATO, UN etc as a country – it’s not currently a “real” country in that sense. A Yes vote will make us a real country, and you’ll actually be Scottish on your passport and able to identify as such internationally. That for me would be a massive change emotionally, even if it wouldn’t affect my day-to-day life a jot.

  56. Cath says:

    “Quite frankly though Ive been married, for umpteen years and I still cant figure women”
    I’ve been a woman for 40 years and I’m equally mystified by women :-p
    “Agreed, the saddest, maybe a tad dramatic, part for me is people should be excited,”
    For me the saddest thing is that I was really excited. After 2007 when we had the National Conversation and a new SNP government, Scottish politics became interesting for the first time. After 2011, politics became genuinely exciting. For the first time in my life I felt we could actually change things. And I felt that finally we’d pushed a really good debate on the future of the UK and Scotland onto the agenda, and that debate would happen.
    The media and establishment reaction has been utterly depressing. It’s designed to turn people off the debate and it’s working. I understand entirely why people don’t want to get involved. Even my initial excitement is wearing off into anger. Again, that suits them – the more hostile the debate the better for the unionists.
    The only answer to that is to keep going, keep debating (politely and non-abusively), keep getting information out there, and work with organisations that are doing good work on the ground, like Yes, RIC, National Collective and Women for Indy. My hope is that by next year the politicians will have been steam-rollered out the way by the grass-roots campaigns.

  57. G H Graham says:

    Women read salacious gossip magazines like Hello & OK so they can compare the size & shape of a celebrity’s tits to their own. And they imagine Tom Cruise coming home with a bag full of groceries from Aldi, exude charm while knocking up a dinner of egg & chips & then shag the arse off them before cosying up on the couch to watch Eastenders. This provides them with mindless, puerile but safe entertainment.
    Men prefer to watch violent movies & participate in drunken hooliganism at football matches. This reinforces the perception that they enjoy taking risks & that they are brave.
    Apart from those two minor differences, I have no idea why women would consider independence differently from men.

  58. Albalha says:

    I’m a woman, who is this Tom Cruise you speak of?

  59. Andy-B says:

    Quite right Cath, getting the information out their is the key to success, I for one feel
    that if the public were properly informed YES would win.

  60. Cath says:

    Personally I hate Hello and OK and only ever read New Scientist and Private Eye. But then I’ve been a definite Yes for well over a year now and never wear high heels so I’m obviously not a normal woman.

  61. G. Campbell says:

    “Oscar-winning [Unionist] actress Emma Thompson has become the patron of Edinburgh College’s Performing Arts Studio of Scotland.”

    “Thompson was introduced to the studio by former Scottish Youth Theatre (SYT) student John Naples-Campbell who is now an acting and theatre performance lecturer at Edinburgh College.”

    UKOKdar is starting up.

    UKOKdar is broadcasting psychic audio of Michael Kelly’s greatest Newsnicht appearances in direction of subject.

    UKOKdar’s psychic sensors report increased arousal in subject’s brain nostrils.

    UKOKdar is receiving archived message from subject’s memory chimneys.

    John Naples-Campbell, 12:38 PM on 16/10/2012:

    “There are too many questions that remain unanswered by the SNP to make our nation Vote YES. ‘The emotional appeal of independence speaks strongly to many Scots. But the practicalities are something else.’ This speaks the truth. 

    “The SNP CAN NOT continue to give free education (which was introduced by Labour), Freeze council Tax, free prescriptions, free travel… it goes on… as our wages are frozen, bills increase, refuse collection gets cut, education and NHS budgets are destroyed… they are living in a dream! SNP need to answer the important questions of WHAT WILL THE IMPACT BE… if we move to the Euro then as a nation we are screwed. Look at Greece, Spain… Dan Dodd mentions being ruled by a Tory Government… The Scots aren’t… Alex Salmond is our First Minister. 

    The notion of giving 16 & 17 year olds vote for this is ridiculous… either give them the full vote for ALL elections or none… they can’t even buy cigarettes as they are too young… but can make a decision on the future of our country? I’m an educator and I completely agree that 16 & 17 year olds should be given the vote BUT for all elections… Alex Salmond is hoping for the ‘braveheart’ vote from our youth. Teachers in schools now have an ADDED pressure of making sure that they are fully prepared for this life changing election.

    “SNP – I am open to change my mind BUT answer me the questions that need answered first! Better Together is my thought”

    UKOKdar reports 100% success rate.

    UKOKdar is returning to sleep mode.

  62. Andy-B says:

    Well Cath,
    I cant think of a definition of a normal woman, which is probably a good

  63. Barontorc says:

    Good enough analysis S-S for me.
    The only thing that could radically shift opinion to the ‘safe’ NO would be so cataclysmic , it is beyond even the comprehension or powers of BT, but who’s to say such could not happen? 
    If I was to be Doomsayer – General, my concern would be founded on what Westminster’s friends could  do by way of a ‘favour’, but it’s such a wildly desperate ploy it’s resolutely better not to even factor it in, for sanity’s sake.
    The MSM and BBC are really playing with fire, but given the WOS panelbase findings, with more to come, even their best slash and burn is failing. 
    Taking the S-S analysis above, there’s no possibility of it being a marginal result. There’s simply no leverage for NO, it will be massively YES. 

  64. Andy-B says:

    O/T Rev. I do apologise.
    I see HS2 has double in cost according to the MSM it was originally £40 Billion quid but today its been estimated to cost £80 Billion quid.

  65. Juteman says:

    Although all women are bonkers, they aren’t stupid.
    Should the household income be given to the neighbours, and they decide most things for you, whilst giving you a bit of pocket money?
    Should a country govern itself, or should countries be governed by bigger neighbours?

  66. Taranaich says:

    The notion of giving 16 & 17 year olds vote for this is ridiculous… either give them the full vote for ALL elections or none…
    Someone needs to tell the old dear that referendums are not elections.

  67. Melissa Murray says:

    I’m an American woman, we tend to vote more progressively than American men. We tend to be more the risk takers. That is why it frustrates the hell out of me that women in Scotland (is England the same?) are so cautious and prone to supporting the status quo.  
    Seriously, I’m surprised women won the right to vote in the UK as long ago as they did. Seems to me many would be happy still not having that opportunity.

  68. Murray McCallum says:

    O/T Caroline Lucas MP arrested at Balcombe Cuadrilla protest.  According to C4 news reporter under section 14 – didn’t leave when asked & obstructing highway.
    Well done Caroline.  I wish she was my MP – she actually seems to believe what she says.  It’ll never work.

  69. Cath says:

    “There’s simply no leverage for NO, it will be massively YES. ”
    One other thing to consider is UKOKs plan for next year appears to be to bombard us with WWI celebrations of Britishness. But during WWI Glasgow was the major centre of anti-war protest, as well as home of rent strikes – led, and won, by women. War is a very male thing, in which women and children suffer silently.
    Now there was an interesting poll recently that found, “men in Glasgow tended to view the anniversary as a Unionist event which would be used to undermine the case for Scottish independence six weeks before the vote.” Women, OTOH are more trusting, viewing it, “in terms of empathy for soldiers and their families and felt it was a time to remember “the debt to those who died”.
    That strongly suggests any attempts and making political capital out of this “celebration” will backfire very badly on Westminster.

  70. Juteman says:

    Not all women are timid. I’m proud of my long gone granny, who was arrested for looting in the ’30’s. The target was a butcher shop window, and it was mostly women involved.

  71. les wilson says:

    You are right, no doubt ignorance did play it’s part here, but the scary thing was she was happy with her ignorance.She showed scant interest in knowing!
    However, I gave her food for thought, and she “says”, she will take more interest as the time comes nearer. We can only hope that she really, really looks beyond the MSM for her answers.
    Also, you are right about her male counterparts, I  have had numerous frustrating talks with quite a few.What is apparent is  their total ignorance of what they say they will vote for. They know  few facts,are always surprised when I try to enlighten them, but basically they  seem hard to turn, my conclusion is that it requires a little effort to find the truth, and they can’t be bothered doing it.
    We just have to keep trying. To inform them of how their OWN lives may be effected by a NO vote,seems the way to go, and what is we must all try and get them to understand,then we may get a different response.

  72. M4rkyboy says:

    ‘You don’t need politics to make public services work, or ensure a high standard of education for all.’
    It’s funny you mention this, i started thinking along the same lines recently as a result of the recent stramash between the FM and Aberdeen council.I was annoyed at what seemed to be unnecessary party politics and whether it mattered whether it was a Labour or Lib Dem council that collected your bin and where it fits in at a service level.

  73. Albalha says:

    You surely know Dundee men are the kettle boilers!

  74. mogabee says:

    Female friends and family are simply not interested in the referendum at the moment, and believe me I have said my piece on many occasions!
     Info about Independence has to be more visible, which means MSM and at the moment that ain’t happening. I still like to mention Indy at all opportunities and am stubborn as a mule. Ignorance of the details will lessen and I’m confidant that YES will win the day..

  75. Juteman says:

    Very true. 🙂
    Dundee has a wonderful history of radical women.

  76. Albalha says:

    “Seriously, I’m surprised women won the right to vote in the UK as long ago as they did. Seems to me many would be happy still not having that opportunity.”

    That’s a bit harsh I’d say. Looking at the 2010 elections more men voted Tory, more women voted both Labour and Lib Dem.
    Turn out was within 2 points.

  77. Cath says:

    O/T but I see there’s a post on the British Unity Vote No site comparing YES voters to the “extremists like the Muslim Brotherhood”. Unbelievably sick and chilling, given that it was only posted today. I can only presume the person posting it would happily condone the same treatment. The fact the page has left it there is also pretty alarming. 

  78. gordoz says:

    Freedom of Information requests submitted by the BBC to Scotland’s health boards have increased dramatically since the SNP came to power, it has emerged;
    by 2012/13 the number of official requests submitted by the BBC had jumped from 14 to an incredible 109, a seven fold increase.
    From NNS website

  79. Craig P says:

    Could it be down to the lack of Scottish cultural tropes for women? Things that are likely to promote a Scottish identity – following the national football team, wearing kilts, drinking whisky, enjoying the great outdoors, etc – are things predominately enjoyed by men. 

  80. gordoz says:

    Who’s this Emma Thompson again ???

  81. Red squirrel says:

    Risking these shark-infested waters with due trepidation; if reassurance is required then voting Yes is the only way to protect NHS Scotland, the only way to protect the pledge to have no privatisation, the only way to keep free prescriptions, the only way to keep free personal care and the only way to ensure our brilliant health service is there for all of us when we need it.
    is that reassuring enough?

  82. Albalha says:

    I am more than happy not to define my Scottishness by the wearing of a kilt or the drinking of whisky.

  83. clochoderic says:

      Surprised nobody has spotted this yet, Alistair Darling is given some very gentle questioning about the independence debate in the latest edition of the BBC’s Hardtalk program.
       As the interview progresses he begins to hyperventilate, the words tumbling out in a torrent, the sweat glistening as he desperately tries to pre-empt any possible challenge to his daft assertions.
      I am sure I have seen this same technique used by Stairheed Rammy and Sarwar junior before, usually in the hope that the obliging Newsnight Scotland will “run out of time” before their mendacious drivel can be challenged by opponent or journalists. In the HardTalk format this approach sounds more like the panicked chuntering of an ill-prepared supply teacher desperately trying to fill the void with the sound of his own voice until rescued by the bell.
      I would be interested to hear the views of Stu and any others on this latest farce.
      Programme can be seen here:
      And will be shown on BBC News 24 tonight at 12.30

  84. gordoz says:

    Not for some in the NHS apparently.
    Totally agree with your pint though.

  85. rabb says:

    Whenever I mention the word ‘referendum’ my missus just rolls her eyes and says “What now?”
    She has no interest in the referendum or politics whatsoever and never discusses it.
    Here’s the interesting bit though.
    Whenever I shout at the TV when the BBC in Scotland news is on she always says the same thing “I don’t know why you get so worked up, we all know they’re talking mince, get over it!
    I know she’s voting yes but the perception people would get from her is that she doesn’t really care about independence. In fact anyone would think she was a unionist with all the tutting and eye rolling whenever you mention the I word!
    I’m sure there will be many many more like her.

  86. John Gibson says:

    As Jenny said, the gender topic is both massive and interesting.
    I was raised by my mother and grandmother alongside two slightly
    younger sisters and a rather later born younger brother,
    and have been married (to a woman!)for 25 years. Whether the reasons are
    social or inborn, the old nature/nurture thing, I don’t know – but when
    men and women agree it often seems to me that they’ve arrived at the same
    conclusion by different routes. I’ll leave the wheres and whys of women
    voters to the ladies posting on here.

    A few posters have raised the topic of a lack of knowledge about the
    separate nature of Scottish institutions and recently I became aware of
    this when trying to convince my aforesaid brother to vote in the coming
    referendum. He hasn’t voted for decades, his opinion of ALL politicians
    is unprintable, and he has a low regard for his fellow Scots – the
    Trainspotting diatribe about being ruled by effete ***kers pretty much
    sums up his thinking. He is not, however, a stupid man but during our
    talk I found out that he didn’t know our NHS was distinct, that our
    education system was separate, and he thought that Scots Law was a minor
    branch of English Law and that English Law always took precedence.
    This lack of awareness is definitely a problem for the Yes camp.

  87. Hetty says:

    Hetty says:
    G H Graham 
    I’m not sure your post about women reading salacious mags is in very good taste, joke aside it’s a bit uncalled for matey.
    Also I am noticing lots of O/T posts, is it too boring to stick to the subject of gender re Indy and politics in question here?

  88. Arbroath 1320 says:

    Sorry I haven’t read all the posts  but perhaps this article in the Telegraph might give some folks a wee bit more meat to chew over. Apparently Cameron is looking at ways to make it easier to form a second coalition government with the LibDems. As if ONE term of Tweedle Dee/Tweedle Dum government is not enough he is looking towards forming a SECOND Tweedle Dee/Tweedle Dum government in 2015!!!

    Surely even the slightest hint of such a ridiculous situation arising should be enough to get Noes/Don’t Know’s to waken up to the reality of even worse to come after 2015 election UNLESS there is a YES victory in 2014!

  89. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Surprised nobody has spotted this yet, Alistair Darling is given some very gentle questioning about the independence debate in the latest edition of the BBC’s Hardtalk program.”

    Ooh, nice find. Blustering, defensive and evasive as usual.

  90. Albalha says:

    Reporting Scotland has just had a love in between G Campbell and D Cameron during DC’s short break on Jura, breathtakingly bad. DC’s Dad in Law had/has an estate on Jura.
    Apparently GC has been requesting an interview for years and this year he said yes.
    GC says ‘Some people might say it’s because of the vote next year but ……”.
    Aye right Glenn, we’ll do without the ‘buts’.

  91. Red squirrel says:

    Hardtalk interview excellent! The first fair questioning of BT & Dear Darling came across as shifty, rattled and incoherent. Hope the interviewer does more on the independence debate as he’s definitely the best I’ve seen so far. 

  92. EvelynSezAye says:

    The only women I know who are voting YES are those I have come across, (who are now all my friends 😀 ) on facebook and twitter who are ‘tuned into’ politics. All of my personal female friends are voting NO. They seem more interested in reading about and watching celebs, soaps, going shopping and gossiping. We must get these women interested but I’m still trying to figure out how it can be done…perhaps a free 10 years sub for Ok magazine..I dunno….Maybe if we tell these women that if they vote NO there will be no more shops? lol..

  93. Agrippinilla says:

    Johann Lamont spotted! The East Lothian Labour news sheet gets delivered to every home and today’s arrived, with JLo posing with Iain Gray while holding a copy of his bus bill. He also has the pic on his Facebook page, dated 26th July.
    Continuing O/T, the same publication has a section entitled “Your views on local issues”, which would suggest views of members of the public, right? Wrong. At least three of the six names quoted are Labour party ex-councillors and still active members, so perhaps they could only find three members of the public happy to slate the SNP (which all six quotes do). Unless the other three are undercover Labourites too. 

  94. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “O/T but I see there’s a post on the British Unity Vote No site comparing YES voters to the “extremists like the Muslim Brotherhood””

    Help me out here, Cath – been wading in that gruesome swamp for half an hour now. Want to narrow it down to a post for me?

    (To link to a specific post on Facebook, the URL you want is where it says “7 Hours ago” or whatever.)

  95. scottish_skier says:

    Ooh, nice find. Blustering, defensive and evasive as usual.

    He does know people think he’s lying and that they’re correct in their assumptions. It’s a natural reaction under the circumstances.

  96. ianbrotherhood says:

    Just watched that ‘Hardtalk’.
    If I was related to Darling I’d be awfy worried about him. He looks as if someone’s emptied a packet of Space Dust into his cranium.

  97. handclapping says:

    Oh no he doesn’t – know that people think he’s lying; it hasn’t been reported in the papers so it cannot exist. Its as bad as the Abdication crisis where the papers had not been reporting what Westminster knew and the “crisis” happened when it couldn’t be hidden from the man on the Auchenshuggle tram.

  98. Marcia says:

    Today in a car with fellow pensioners the conversation for some reason turned to Independence not the referendum. The 4 others in the car were at the beginning of the year were solidly in the No camp. Today’s talk was of when we are Independent. I noticed the change of terminology. One woman who last year was happy when Better Together started is now veering towards Yes because of the bedroom tax and the Tories policies.. The other female ihas moved away from automatic No to don’t know. The two male Tories in the car (one very anti-SNP) were saying that there would not be much change for them to get worried  about.  

  99. muttley79 says:

    Reporting Scotland has just had a love in between G Campbell and D Cameron during DC’s short break on Jura, breathtakingly bad. DC’s Dad in Law had/has an estate on Jura.
    Apparently GC has been requesting an interview for years and this year he said yes.
    GC says ‘Some people might say it’s because of the vote next year but ……”.
    Aye right Glenn, we’ll do without the ‘buts’.
    Boothman strikes again.  Even Jackie Bird and Glenn Campbell looked uncomfortable, Campbell in particular I thought.  This was a puff piece extraordinaire.  This is a PM whose government has attacked the poor and vulnerable relentlessly.  Sickening by BBC Scotland.

  100. westie7 says:

    Sorry for going OT but Original 106FM in Aberdeenshire currently on a mission for Aberdeen city council and Dicky Baker.
    Inspite of it being reported over a week ago, that Barney Crockett didnae like the Information Commissioner Clearing AS for his school visit before the Donside By Election, and now he’s running to the UK Commissioner.. The local radio stations and papers are pushing it big time today.
    At the same time Dicky is slobbering into the mikes about the need for the SG to fix the law so Aberdeen City council can deal with the “Travellers” problem.
    My Question is, why now? whats not being reported?

  101. Albalha says:

    Just awful. As a comparison Channel 4 News doing a piece from Padstow on expensive housing, locals being priced out, low wages etc and making the point that D Cameron is about to head there to stay with a Tory MP who owns two second homes in the town.
    Don’t think Cathy Newman will be staying on to walk along the beach with Dave chatting about his bad back!

  102. scottish_skier says:

    Oh no he doesn’t – know that people think he’s lying
    Aye,  Blair McDougall probably told Darling about the poll results and Darling thought he was lying.

  103. a supporter says:

    Much LESS scared of Conservative governments
    Females more iinfluenced by posh/educated voices, and Tories have more of these.
    Other fears
    It is in their genes to be more fearful than males of everything particularly the unknown..
    HALF as scared of space monsters
    Females are not into black humour like men. I think they would view this as a silly question. (So did I)
    Slightly LESS scared overall (26% said “none of the above”, vs 22% of men)
    Surely this is wrong. Females as a species are in general more afraid of the unkown than males.

  104. southernscot says:

    Marcia good to hear that. With such a long run up to the actual vote there is only so long you can put your fingers in your ears and say no, no, no. As soon as you go looking for info you know that the case for the union doesn’t stand up to even the lightest of scrutiny.

  105. paul the printer says:

    Off topic but…
    ‘   Opposition parties have accused ministers of trying to pretend the figure applied to Scotland alone and then quietly issuing a correction…. ‘
    The above is the actual words someone in the BBC decided to use in a report about oil jobs. The BBC are of course the masters of making corrections. Or are they?
    When, rather than if, their reports are found to be inaccurate they don’t make any public correction at all because it is ‘not newsworthy’. If it’s the SNP- main story! Have compared and contrasted… and stopped paying the licence fee 🙂

  106. Brian Powell says:

    Possibly women are used to dealing with each problem as it occurs, and don’t connect all the problems to a common origin and cause.
    I did speak to woman who said she was terrified of Independence, she didn’t even want to think about it, and was voting No. I don’t know how downtrodden a person needs to be to not even want to think.

  107. Betsy says:

    How do you know that females aren’t just more comfortable expressing fear than men? 

  108. a supporter says:

    A few posts above have mentioned the fact that many people don’t know that the NHSs in Scotland and England are two separate entities. I have to confess that I didn’t know that either until I became more closely involved with politics in this Independence campaign. Yet I’m sure that the NHS figures high on everyones concerns about Independence. And there may be other important devolutions that many are not aware off.
    The reason for my lack of knowledge is that I have never seen a simple list of what organisations and powers ARE devolved and what that means in practical terms. YES/SNP should get their fingers out and inform us.

  109. a supporter says:

    Betsy I wasn’t being critical of females. Merely observing that no matter how sophisticated we think we are today it is not long ago in evolutionary terms that men hunted while women stayed by the cave and gathered. The genes evolved then are still with us and i would suggest that women are still basically more fearful than men, eg, men walk in lonely places at night, women don’t.

  110. The Flamster says:

    @ A supporter
    Go on to a website called “Write to them” put in your postcode and it will give you a list of all your locally elected representatives.  Click on to the bit that says – don’t know who to contact – and it gives you a list of what is devolved and what is reserved.

  111. I’m afraid it’s true that many men and women are not aware that Education, Law and NHS Scotland are wholly the responsibility of the Scottish Government -even before we had the parliament to run it.  This needs to be reinforced and the fact that a No vote is in fact a positive choice for less money for Holyrood, (Barnett cuts to come as England spends less on public services)  less for these vital services and the people who run and use them.  
    Women will need reassured their families’ futures and these 3 services, savings and pensions are safe with independence as they will be, and fear is what they should feel with staying in the Union. The official Yes campaign will always be a positive one, but the alternative should be made clear, even if its only by Wings and other blogs.

  112. scottish_skier says:

    men hunted while women stayed by the cave and gathered.
    I understood this is an incorrect modern concept associated with recent religions (Christianity, Islam etc). Pagans were (are) far less rigid; women and men equal with women often hunting, going into battle etc. Often they were seen as more important than men as they gave birth to new life. This is off topic though.
    I have faith in the female Scots electorate. They’re not stupid. More cautious maybe…less adversarial yes…but no fools. They’ll decide in their own time.

  113. also a bit distressed at gross generalisations of the female gender. We are all individuals with all kinds of experiences and concerns. All these will have to be addressed, for men and women.

  114. scottish_skier says:

    also a bit distressed at gross generalisations of the female gender. 

    We can do that for men in the next article maybe?

    First thing is they’re clueless about women. But then that’s what makes women fascinating to them…

  115. Angus says:

    “The people in Scotland are ageing more rapidly than the people in the rest of the uk.”
    Alistair Darling
    Aye, after half an hour of listening to this shite from Darling I as a Scot felt 100 years fucking older.
    Hilarious blustering guff from what was more like “Soft Talk” than HardTalk bbc………though Darling struggled to even justify the simplest of his very simplistic statements which came across as if even he didn’t believe his own twaddle and he truly struggled having even the most gentlest of challenges by the interviewer soft bowled at him with a flower and the petals that accompanied the question.
    A bad show, he should be ashamed and embarrassed but we all now that he isn’t, that is what desperation does to you.
    I also enjoyed the interviewer saying “You are happy that for the last thirty years those in favour of an Independent Scotland has stayed at thirty percent while those who are against or  haven’t decided is at 70%!”
    Why should that please a nay sayer?

  116. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Lots of intersting thoughts on a very wide canvas here. My observation after over fifty years at this is that political parties couldn’t operate without women and that women usually are much more dedicated and loyal and a lot less personally ambitious. They don’t grandstand and they do the work and look after the detail a lot better than most men. Generally things like bringing up children and running households inhibit early entry into the political arena but once they are in they are in for the long haul and much more rarely than men for personal kudus. 
    I am sure a huge majority of voters in Scotland WANT to vote YES which is why NAW is trying to frighten them. The result of this in general terms is that many won’t vote rather than vote No.
    I’m sure the YES campaign is quite happy to see NAW tied up in arguments about things Nato membership, currency, EU and so on. Most of these things are of modest interest to general public. I have never once been asked about Nato but its useful to say we will be in it when somebody worries about defence, most people are not concerned about what currency we will use , only whether they will have enough of and most are at worst broadly neutral about the EU.
    This war of attrition will continue with less effect against us as it suffers from diminishing returns and everything changes when we get onto aspirational visions next year.
    I take the point about the NHS. All the Scottish media has been trying to damage the SNP over the NHS because they understand how central the NHS is as a concept and a comfort.  NHS Scotland has its challenges due to funding difficulties beyond our control but against the steadily developing disaster in in England it is performing bravely.
    One thing that has struck with many people and concerns me is the notion that Alex Salmond is a “liar”. Nobody when challenged can tell me what the lies were and perhaps more should have been made of him being cleared on any occasion in which that accusation was made. It’s s difficult one however . Sometimes it is better to ignore such accusations on the grounds that contesting them gives them more air . 

  117. Caroline Corfield says:

    Slightly OT but since many posters above have mentioned the importance of the NHS this website is a good place to start comparing stats specifically on cancer. I compared Greater Glasgow and Clyde with Newcastle-upon-Tyne and the 62 day diagnosis rates were very favourable while the incidence rates suggested it was a valid comparison. You cannot directly compare Scottish results with English results but that simply requires a pen and a piece of paper to get around.

  118. a supporter says:

    The Flamster

    Go on to a website called “Write to them” put in your postcode and it will give you a list of all your locally elected representatives.  Click on to the bit that says – don’t know who to contact – and it gives you a list of what is devolved and what is reserved.

    That’s no good for the bulk of the population. I said we needed a simple list of what is devolved plus simple explanations of what it means. 


  119. Angus says:

    a ‘supporter’: “Merely observing that no matter how sophisticated we think we are today it is not long ago in evolutionary terms that men hunted while women stayed by the cave and gathered.”
    I don’t think that the opening credits of the Flintstones should be treated like it was a documentary mate.
    The reasons a man might go down a dark alley at night are plentiful, (and maybe construed as wrong) but I bet not many of these reasons comes across as being because we are inherently ‘brave’ or ‘dead ‘ard’ in comparison to women rather than some of us are a bit ‘daft’.

  120. Tony Little says:

    OT, sorry, but interesting over on the Herald.  Terry Kelly responded to a couple of my posts in which he referred to “separatists” as illiterate and stupid.  I challenged him and he called me a liar.  Then, surprise BOTH his posts have been deleted as though they never existed.  Wish I had saved the page now 🙁 must do that next time. 
    Some change of heart over there?

  121. Angus says:

    A supporter: “That’s no good for the bulk of the population. I said we needed a simple list of what is devolved plus simple explanations of what it means.”
    I am afraid that anyone who can type can find out what you think is impossible, even a child could do it-set your heights and replies a bit higher or you could come across as a  person talking absolute shite about women to make the good commentators here look bad (you dream) and also coming across as a person who has no clue as to the contribution woman have made to the world.
    If I was a very pro british type, for instance, I might cite ‘Boudicca” for instance as no guy would jump her in a dark alley and live I’d imagine!
    Or indeed ‘Britannia’ – because she ruled the waves when men didnae.

  122. AnneDon says:

    I have no answer to the question of why women are less likely to want independence than men. To be honest, I had hoped this poll might be different in that regard.
    The Yes campaign has more women involved than any I’ve ever been involved with, and in more active positions. I am totally baffled.
    Was there a breakdown of men/women believing the MSM and BBC?

  123. Angus says:

    ‘devolved powers scottish parliament’ typed into google gives:

    Here is a snippet:
    Devolved powers
    The following areas are decided in Scotland.




    Sport and Arts

    Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing

    Emergency Services


    Social Work


    some Transport


    Reserved powers
    Decisions (mostly about matters with a UK or international impact) are reserved and dealt with at Westminster.


    UK Foreign Policy

    Social Security

    Financial & Economic Matters


    Constitutional matters

    Immigration & Nationality

    Monetary System

    Common Markets

    Some transport

    Data Protection



    Medical Ethics

    Equal Opportunities

    The UK Parliament at Westminster retains power to legislate on any matter, but the convention of devolution is that the UK Parliament will not normally legislate on devolved matters without the consent of the Scottish Parliament.
    That last one is why we need to vote YES by the way, ‘cos if we vote no we are going to see that last sentence being applied by westminster.
    Keeping us women and men in our place.

  124. Tony Little says:

    Might it simply be that women are just waiting to get more information.  From reading the comments, it seems that many women who were dead set NO before, are either drifting to DK or in some cases jumping to YES.  They won’t ‘go back’, at least I really doubt it.  So why?  Well, can it be that they are quietly and undemonstratively finding things out?  Chatting more to each other, looking things up?
    I can’t find any particular reason for the differences at the moment except that.  I doubt its a gender stereotype, but. .. who knows.  To be honest, although I want as many women to vote YES as possible. if after they have researched it, they feel safer with the Union, so be it.  But I would be dismayed if people (men or women) voted No out of ignorance, which is IMO the game-plan of the MSM.

  125. fordie says:

    Most people I know aren’t interested in Politics. Much to my frustration – because politics (small p) affects everything in your life. Sick of hearing comment like ‘Nothing will change’, ‘My vote won’t change anything’. ‘They’re all the same’. I view this as a cop out. If you don’t like it, do something to change it. Unfortunately, in my experience, far fewer women are interested than men. There’s no simple answer as to why this is. I can take a guess to some of the reasons a) less time – politic watching is perceived as a hobby b) more responsibilities so less time c) women’s issues – I find this personally patronising. Whilst childcare/care of elderly relatives/housework certainly impact more on women still, aren’t we past the stage that these should be seen as women’s issues only. Aren’t they everyone’s issues? d) Copping out, as above. Governance is the responsibility of all. Stop leaving it to the men. e) Men have louder voices and appear to be absolutely confident in their opinion. Women still find it more difficult to speak publicly and like take time to think before commenting. Re. the referendum in general. Women are less likely to be risk takers and they perceive indy as a risk.

  126. Betsy says:

    Apologies, if it came over that I thought you were having a go at females, it wasn’t my intention at all.
    I’m not entirely convinced women are more fearful, I just think there’s is less stigma about women expressing fear, which in turn makes them appear more fearful.
    In terms of walking dark streets a lone female is certainly perceived as more vulnerable and if attacked by a man they certainly would be. However statistically a man is more likely to be attacked than a woman.  

  127. AnneDon says:

    @TonyLittle – I hope, if anyone assesses the situation, they would naturally vote yes! It is a disgrace that the MSM are betraying people by failing to provide impartial information.
    I was at the Iain McWhirter talk at the Book Festival last week. Someone in the audience asked the “Too Poor” question. MacWhirter swatted it away and told the guy: Scotland has vast reserves of Hydrocarbon energy, 25% of all the renewable wind/wave energy in Europe, and more world class universities than either France or Germany.  It could easily be independent.
    Why don’t journalists on the BBC deal with facts like that, and move onto further discussions about the issues?
    The biggest problem is convincing anyone that Scotland would be different from Westminster. Once people accept that Westminster in its current form is unreformable, then voting Yes is the option.
    I just watched the 5 minute Pat Kate/Greg McClymont discussion on The Guardian website – all McClymont did was nitpick on differences between SNP & Yes. Unbelieveable. He had positive nothing to say!
    OTOH, as commented on earlier, the No campaign are sucking the life out of their own supporters, making them disinclined to vote at all!

  128. Paula Rose says:

    What women don’t want are political parties and systems of government that are unequal in gender balance, an economic system ditto or men who still think they know better when all around us is the devestation that their grand ideas have caused.

  129. Red squirrel says:

    Re NHS stats – just a caution on trying to compare health stats. The biggest mistake politicians make about health is trying to quantify everything. Health care is a complex mix and much of the most important stuff is qualitative. In any case, the NHS in all four countries has diverged so much as to be barely recognisable.

  130. Welsh Sion says:

    Scotland, you will be aware of the BBC page on Scotland’s Future
    and the background guides it contains.

    I have attempted, as a professional linguist, to analyse the two sections which refer to the supporters of both the status quo and those who do not. Let’s see if you agree with my analysis.

    1 Who are the pro-Union backers?
    Ordinary Members of the public join politicians in pro-UK campaign

    – Pro-Union. Pro means in favour of and is to be construed as something positive.
    – Ordinary members of the public. That is, people just like you and me.
    – Ordinary members of the public join politicians. These people, who are just like you and me are highlighted first in the sentence. The initative comes from them *not* the politicians. This pro-Union campaign comes from the grassroots. Further, these ‘ordinary people’ are highlighted before the politicians – the least trustworthy camp of the two.
    – Join. Indicates some positive energy by these ‘ordinary people’ to get involved, in a common purpose.
    – Pro-UK. See above regarding ‘Pro’. ‘Pro-UK’ is not necessarily co-terminus with ‘Pro-Union’. Indeed, the Union (in this instance) involves Scotland and England, the UK involves England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
    – Campaign. Indicates something that has been and is (well-) organised, not spontaenous, a group effort, not indivualistic.

    2 The ‘Yes Scotland’ backers
    Who are the politicians, actors and musicians who want to go it alone?

    – ‘Yes Scotland’. Indicates some sort of organisation. However, a Martian could not be clear what this stands for out of context.
    – ‘Who are the politicians … ?’ Places the less trustworthy people first and not ‘the ordinary members of the public’ (cf above under 1)
    – Actors and musicians. These are *not* ‘ordinary members of the public’, not people just like you and me (cf. 1 above).
    – Politicians, artists and musicians. As there is no mention of ‘ordinary members of the public’ it must be that only high falutin’ people like politicians, actors and musicians want ‘to go it alone’ – not ‘the ordinary members of the public.’
    – To go it alone. Presents a negative image. Conveys ideas of being by oneself, isolated, separated etc.
    – No mention of a ‘campaign’. (Cf. 1, above). Idea presented that nothing is organised. Spontaenity is the approach, with the individuals speaking only as individuals and *not* as some professionally organised outfit.

  131. G H Graham says:

    Salacious gossip magazines are read in their millions by women every week & it is reasonable to assume that some will have their opinions, values, ideas & indeed intentions influenced by them.
    And I’m not your mate since we don’t know each other.
    Don’t be offended when your preferred topic of choice is side lined; no one appears to be able to explain using facts, voting intentions due to gender so it’s inevitable the subject of conversation might change.
    Did anyone see the football on the telly last night?

  132. rabb says:

    Welsh Sion
    Good observation. The BBC in Scotland are part of the No campaign. This for me is beyond any reasonable doubt and needs to be accepted.

    We will win this referendum by sheer people power alone. The BBC will effectively die come the 19th Sep 2014. Good riddance!!

  133. Faltdubh says:

    I’ve found the hardest to be persuaded are women and the younger new voters (16+). I’ve discussed the independence referendum with many people. Persuaded 5 people from No/maybe to yes now and another 2 who were absolutely against to now undecided/verging towards yes – they are all men.
    The answer I get back from women is usually ”things are fine” or there abouts, when I try to explain but they won’t be in the future, the debt,  we will not get any further powers for the parli, the full scale of the cuts are yet to be felt, the UK will be struggling economically for years – added on with the surplus of resources we have, the govt we vote for we will get, the shockingly poor levels of poverty in Scotland and how Westminister have yet to tackle them, plus some of the stuff the Scots parli has done to lead the way (both when Lib-Lab were in power and the SNP) it’s meant with indifference.
    I’ve also had the ”I like British tele”.
    Hopefully Yes are working on this as I’d hate to see us lose this thing by 2-3 % yet women vote for indy at 20% or something ridiculous low. 

  134. The Man in the Jar says:

    WTF Newsnicht trying its very best to get the Commonwealth General Secretary to say that Scotland will be thrown out of the Commonwealth post independence.
    Oh no! they have got Foulks on now this will be good.

  135. a supporter says:

    Angus say at 9.25 pm
    Are you on the juice or something? How many of the population do you think can type?  Surely it is not too much to ask that YES/SNP produce the information about what is and what is not devolved in an easily available and readable format. 
    And this article is about why women are apparently more fearful than men and I gave what in my opinion are a few reasons why that may be so. If you don’t agree with me, too bad. Produce your own reasons. But don’t make uneducated and incoherent rants at me.

  136. gordoz says:

    What is the point of continuing this rubbish with newsnight – nothing better to do ??
    What a scoop on Commonwealth ?? Wheel out Lord Flukes / Big wow. Talk over Kerrevan, then onto a love in with Glenn Campbell (a lifelong ambition apparently)
    Jesus !!! boak what waste of money  – serious journalism ???  Political dynamics ??

    2 seconds on hacking at YES Scotland ???

  137. gordoz says:

    On Womens issue  – maybe fairness is a point to focus on. Equality ?
    What about press equality in referendum, get them to identify the pro YES newspaper in all fairness there must be one surely  – isn’t there ??? (There must be / ther has to be).
    Create a link to womens feelings of inequality ??? Some women moan about not having a voice or being heard. Sound familiar ??

  138. Betsy says:

    @Tony Little,
    If you check Cllr Terry Kelly’s remarkable blog, you might find he’s published the now deleted comments there. He’s presently got the rage, well more rage than usual because he thinks the Herald are unfairly deleting his cooments. The thing is he’s being deleted because cannot make a point without personally abusing the person he’s debating with. Of course he can’t see this and has taken to publishing his Herald comments on his own blog.  

  139. Weedeochandorris says:

    Well, I do think women will take their time and make their mind up, nothing wrong with that. I imagine when Sept next year comes around they will have a pretty good idea of what it will mean for Scotland if they either don’t vote or vote no.  They will have to stand up and be counted or live with the consequences. There can be no excuses for burying your head in the sand with something as important as this especially when it will be printed out in black and white.  I honestly believe that, once the women really start to pay attention, have a full grasp of what the lies are that are being peddled and what the real truth is, they will definately rise up and make the right decision.  We must get their attention somehow and let them know they are central to this referendum. Nobody in their right mind could accept what a No vote will do to our children and their children, surely?

  140. gordoz says:

    Warning UK Nukes indeed all Nukes // open to hacking infiltration & destruction
    After watching Horizon / Hackers tonight and the gobsmacking capabilities of modern state hackers targeting Nuke Facilities in Iran; just  how deep in the systems the sleeping malware can go and stay dormant. Its  very very disturbing.

    Get the nukes out of Scotland Now – seriously watch the show.


  141. cath says:

    Rev, the Muslim Brotherhood comment is in the “recent post by others” bit, someone called Derick McKenzie, about 10 hours ago from now, on this page
    Or this might work: a very ironic post, but still somewhat sinister.

  142. wanvote says:

    Paula Rose said
    What women don’t want are political parties and systems of government that are unequal in gender balance, an economic system ditto, or men who still think they know better when all around is the devastation that their grand ideas have caused.
    I wholeheartedly agree with her statement and till others take this view seriously many women will have little reason to see independence as a solution to a better Scotland.

  143. Tony Little says:

    Thanks for the information, although I think I’ll give Cllr Kelly’s personal thoughts a miss. 

  144. Adam Davidson says:

    Scottish Skier made a point about polls and the type of person that may change their position. His comment was that no one loves the union. That is such an important point. Does anyone LOVE the union? They may want to keep it for practical reasons but for most it isn’t really what they want. Independence will also be for practical reasons but for many many people it will just be that they know it is the natural way. I’m not explaining this very well I know. Some will chose the union out of personal self preservation, others out of fear but human nature is to do it yourself, not to chose to be dependent on others. Independence has been accused of being a leap of faith, and may be. My favourite quote is Henry Ford, If you think you can or you think you can’t, you are probably right.

  145. Juteman says:

    OT. BBC News reporting that personal emails from Yes have been leaked/hacked.

  146. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Just filled in a Yougov survey on Scottish politics, voting intentions and the referendum.
    The core of the survey was obviously more powers to Scotland (haha) should there be a No vote. There was no option as to whether we had an opinion if the powers would ever actually be granted after the promises.
    Why do I think the Pabelbase survey initiated by WoS has gingered up something somewhere.

  147. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    I forgot, they also asked about the quality of Scottish football in comparison with the English leagues and how well Celtic would do in England.
    In the comments box at the end had a go at them for not asking how confident I was about actually getting anything promised post referendum, assuming a No vote and suggested a propos football they were to Anglo centric.
    Why not a North Atlantic `league spanning Ireland Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark?

  148. scottish_skier says:

    Maybe women are worried about having their e-mails hacked if they support independence?

  149. Patrick Roden says:

    their was a recent press release by Nicola Sturgeon, in which she said that internal polling by the SNP was showing a definite shift towards Yes from women, on the scaled polling that they do.
    This caused an almighty gripe from BT and some in the MSM (including  Proff Curtice) as they moaned that the SNP needed to release all their data, and should not just release the good points.
    However no one in BT denied the claims that women were moving towards Yes.

  150. Dave says:

    Some very interesting analysis of social media trends here:-
    Make sure to check out the results pie chart for May.

  151. Craig P says:

    Albaha – what activities do you do that tend to promote a Scottish identity? If it is difficult to come up with anything, then you’ll see my point. (Though obviously, posting on WoS would be one 🙂 )

  152. Lianachan says:

    Bugger (the Panda) says

    Just filled in a Yougov survey on Scottish politics, voting intentions and the referendum.

    I’ve just done that one, too. Strange questions.

  153. Gillie says:

    Yes Campaign email account has been hacked.
    It seems to follow a similar pattern, whereby information is gained or leaked and passed onto the media for publication or broadcasting that then becomes a critical story of the YES campaign or the Scottish government.
    This is the British state at its best when it sees itself threatened by indulging in a DIRTY TRICKS campaign.  
    Expect Dodgy Dossiers, break ins, entrapment, bugging,  smearing of prominent nationalists, etc. 
    The real campaign starts today, its going to be blood, hair and snottirs from now on. 

  154. Seasick Dave says:

    I watched an interesting interview on AlJazeera last night featuring a Professor of Middle Eastern studies from America, describing the active role that women are taking in the demonstrations in Egypt.
    They are actively putting their lives at risk and many have been subjected to sexual assaults by security forces but this has not deterred them from turning out on the streets in great numbers.
    I’m sure that come September 2014 women will be engaged in the debate as they quite simply have to.
    A No vote does NOT mean that things stay as they are and everything will be ‘fine as it is’.

  155. Luigi says:

    O/T We may now get booted out of the Commonwealth if we vote YES next year.
    Desperate times.  You have to admire the persistence of the BBC.  No stone unturned.

  156. Rich says:

     Scots only elect 1% women to the uk parliament yet if they vote yes then it is possible for 50% representation.

  157. Braco says:

    The question is, do women turn out to vote / are as politically participative in actual voting terms as men? I would imagine that they are, in broadly general terms.
    This means that women, just like their male counterparts, will certainly come to a conclusion, on which way to vote, in time for the referendum deadline. They will make their decision on broadly the same criteria as men and they will gain their information on the pros and cons of each side from the same general pool of information floating around society at the time of the vote.
    It’s up to us to influence that general pool of information in society, by getting out there and injecting the facts of independence into our society via millions of grass roots interactions. This is well underway and will dramatically increase the closer we get to the referendum. 
    The betterNO campaign relies on the MSM and broadcasters such as the BBC to perform this task for them, but against the grassroot, face to face discussion philosophy of YES, these organisations suffer terribly from mistrust, and unfortunately for them, from the very societal pool that they are being tasked to influence.
    In my opinion, the difference between current voting intentions between women and men are simply due to women, for various societal reasons, tend to interact with political debates/campaigns much closer to the time taht a decision is required than men do.
    The responses we are currently seeing from women at the moment, and getting worked up about, is just that, current.
    I am confident this current (disengaged) view will change as women, just like the rest of society, begin to engage seriously with the political and social arguments at the centre of the decision that everyone is being asked to make on September 18th 2014.

  158. Morag says:

    I don’t know what “women” want.  I’m not sure I know many “women”.  I’m not sure I’m one myself.  I’ve got the requisite number of X chromosomes, but this little pigeon-hole of “woman” doesn’t really seem to fit.
    I’m a person, and I’m certainly not a man.  I’ve got a job and many interests.  I don’t have a husband and I don’t have children.  Would having the latter make me feel part of this stereotype “woman” category, I wonder.
    I’m not sure.  I think people feel like people.  Dorothy L. Sayers had something to say about all that.

  159. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I’m not sure. I think people feel like people. Dorothy L. Sayers had something to say about all that.”

    I agree, but when I say that I usually get called a misogynist by angry feminists, so I tend to keep it to myself.

  160. Braco says:

    Rev Stu,
    Ah ha! You closet misogynist!

  161. westie7 says:

    Luigi says:
    20 August, 2013 at 9:22 am

    O/T “We may now get booted out of the Commonwealth if we vote YES next year.”
    Yup had a chuckle at that too, 
    Wonder if there are any other countries out there with the Queen as Head of State but are not in the Commonwealth

  162. liz says:

    I think we should be encouraged by the number of DKs with women.
    I do think in the main that a lot of women are more cautious as they tend to worry about the futures of their family – I know men do also – but we are discussing gender differences.
    The latest FUD about the Commonwealth is a case in point.
    I am actually astonished at the attack on Scotland’s case for Independence and my eyes are now fully open to the complete disgrace which is the UK.
    Unless you follow sites such as this, people will be unaware of just how controlling the establishment is.
    I know people who will vote yes but still believe in the British system as they don’t follow politics closely.
    I tried to persuade someone recently that the NHS in England is being privatised and they didn’t believe me.

  163. Cath says:

    “Albaha – what activities do you do that tend to promote a Scottish identity”
    Could be a fair point about men having more cultural identity references. Most of my female friends seem to be pro-indy, but most of them also play the fiddle, or are otherwise involved in traditional music, storytelling or other cultural activities. The ones who aren’t into trad arts (and I haven’t met through the SNP or Yes campaign) are the ones less likely to be Yes voters. So…forced accordion lessons could the way to go :-p

  164. Cath says:

    “I am actually astonished at the attack on Scotland’s case for Independence and my eyes are now fully open to the complete disgrace which is the UK.”
    Totally agree with this. I came into this debate as very much a federalist – Scottish and British, love both, sure we can work out something reasonably. I always felt Scotland was not oppressed or repressed. The constitutional set-up was silly and outdated but that that wasn’t through any real deliberate repression.
    But very quickly after taking notice of the debate it became obvious dirty tricks had been used against Scotland to keep it that way – 1979, “tartan terrorism” that was actually the British state, the hidden McCrone report, Willie McCrae. All that kind of stuff was an eye opener early on. But even then I was naive enough to believe that was in the past and we’d moved on.
    Of course I knew the media would be wholly biased against, and the British state would fight tooth and nail but what’s really surprised me is the way in which all of that is radically changing my own perception of the UK. Because what is all that if not repression and oppression? The entire NO campaign and its media works on abusing, smearing and oppressing those who disagree with them. Also, watching the London based media daily smear, abuse and denigrate our elected representatives is beginning to feel like a foreign country trying to undermine our democracy. I’ve never felt of the UK as “a foreign country” or Westminster as “a foreign government” before, but it really does now. And it feels as if we’re at war with it. That’s what Westminster’s NO campaign has managed to achieve with this previous undecided, federalist. Doesn’t seem very positive for anyone really.

  165. Cath, couldn’t agree more. I feel like I’m a foreigner in my ain Country somehow.

  166. Jeannie says:

    It’s hard to know what’s going on with women in terms of the referendum – because, in my experience, they don’t talk much about it.  But that doesn’t mean they don’t have an opinion, they just aren’t necessarily expressing it.  It’s almost as though it’s socially unacceptable to discuss politics – maybe because politics in Scotland tends to be a bit tribal and divisive and women tend not to like to fall out with each other.  So if you’re not discussing it with your pals, where do you get your information from?  If you don’t discuss it, do you wind up being less informed, therefore less able to make a decision?
    I honestly couldn’t tell you how most of my female friends will vote.  They know how I’ll vote, but I’m the only female I know in my social group who is open about it. On the other hand, I’m well aware of what the men will do.  They say men don’t talk…..but when it comes to the referendum, I find that they are perfectly willing to express an opinion.  It’s the women who won’t.  Maybe they’re worried we’d fall out 🙁

  167. Angus McPhee says:

    “Surely it is not too much to ask that YES/SNP produce the information about what is and what is not devolved in an easily available and readable format. ”

    Is this hidden information or something?  where do you think anyone with any sense who wanted to know what’s devolved would look?

  168. Angus McPhee says:

    “My favourite quote is Henry Ford, If you think you can or you think you can’t, you are probably right.”

    And he was probably wrong, my personal experience is that very often  when I thought I couldn’t but didn’t have any choice but to try, I found that i could. Conversely I’ve spectacularly failed on a number of occasions when I thought somthing was going to be easy peasy.

  169. Jocko says:

    These figures could be very bad for Yes.
    If the majority of undecideds are women, who are almost 2-1 for no when decided wont that mean that the majority of undecided are likely to vote No?

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