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With a straight face

Posted on March 17, 2016 by

Here’s a tweet from Fraser Nelson of the Spectator this morning:

frasernelsonobr

Now, we already know that’s complete drivel for at least five reasons. But it’s not the maddest thing about the point Nelson’s trying to make.

Because we’ve cut something out of that image – an animated GIF showing a series of oil-revenue forecasts by the Office for Budget Responsibility. And if you separate out the frames of the animation, they look like this:

obr1

obr2

obr3

obr4

obr5

And what any sane person would instantly glean from looking at those five images is that the OBR is really, really bad at forecasting oil revenues.

The GERS figures published last week were for 2014-15. Three years ago the OBR forecast that they’d be £6bn. A year later it had slashed that prediction by over 33%, to under £4bn. A year later it had cut it by another 50%, to £2bn.

Over the same period, the OBR’s projections for next year have plummeted from £4.5bn to zero. That, dear readers, is a ONE HUNDRED PERCENT margin of error.

It’s almost impossible to be more wrong than that – except the OBR has managed it, because its 2013 prediction for 2016-18 oil revenues has now been “revised” from £8.5bn to MINUS £2bn, which is an impressive 124% margin of error.

And if we might emphasise it in just one more way, the OBR’s 2013 forecast for the full four-year period has now come down from almost £20bn to zero. Twenty billion pounds that it expected to be in the Scottish economy has just vanished.

That is some damned godawful forecasting by anyone’s reckoning. But the crazy twist is that Unionists have somehow managed to use “the OBR is really, really bad at forecasting oil revenues” as evidence for the claim that Scotland can’t afford to be independent because the OBR’s oil-revenue forecasts say so.

Have you got that? Here is is again:

“We’ve proved the economic case for independence has been destroyed, by using forecasts that we’ve just shown you are extremely likely to be wrong on a spectacular, galactic scale of wrongness for which the word ‘wrong’ is hopelessly inadequate.

These forecasts have until now been uniformly wrong, to a degree which makes wrongness as a concept seem like a Papal level of total infallibility, but they’ll definitely be right in the future and that proves our argument.”

And then, still with the same straight face, Unionists will mindbogglingly summon the brass neck to accuse independence supporters of “post-truth” and “faith-based” politics, even as they cling to the demented fantasy that a government body which would have produced more accurate predictions about oil revenues with a bag of tealeaves and a Ouija board is about to magically transform into the Oracle at Delphi.

To be honest, readers, we don’t even know how you deal with that.

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    1. 17 03 16 11:43

      With a straight face | Speymouth

    295 to “With a straight face”

    1. Chas says:

      And we know God made the earth in 6 days because his bible tells us so.

    2. bobajock says:

      Its the lies and the ability of the press to question nothing that simply show how corrupt it all is.

      Thanks again Rev, its the only smile I get on my face these days when you dissect the Westminster crud and their followers.

    3. Davy says:

      How is it only media dicks that judge Scotland by its oil revenues, yet we are so much more.

    4. James Mills says:

      Wasn’t the OBR a department in Orwell’s 1984 ?

    5. Golfnut says:

      I find myself laughing at the stupidity of this kind information spin from the media and UK gov, but that only hides a seething anger at the sheer dishonesty and duplicity on display. The oil and gas industry, tell a different story, not much air time given to the good news.

    6. Dave Hansell says:

      James Mills,

      Do you mean the Ministry which claims 2+2= -5?

    7. Macart says:

      I can’t keep slapping my face like this. Mrs M thinks I’ve turned to self abuse as a coping mechanism.

    8. Daisy says:

      Hi I also wrote a blog on Osborne’s Budget, feedback would be much appreciated! 🙂

      Osborne’s Budget: Austerity to the Max
      http://wp.me/p7808q-kG

    9. george says:

      a brief history of oil price forecasting over the last fifteen years:

      2003 – once we invade iraq oil will be back below $20. oh wait

      2004 – a new stable price will be around $40. oh wait

      2006 – $60 will be the new price floor; it won’t break $100

      2007 – ok, so $100 isn’t so bad

      2008 – it might break $200

      2009 – it won’t drop below $50

      2010 – it’s doing what now?

      2011>2014 – ok, so this seems more sensible

      2014 – it’s still holding above

    10. Adrian n m brown says:

      O&G v low forecasts designed to piss off separatists pro tem but when oil prices bounce back (as they will) Osborne will have lovely windfall bonus to distribute.

    11. Perhaps, come the 1st. of April, the Spectator will have the headline ” We fooled you it was just a ruse!” Don,t think so myself. In competence at its lowest point

    12. Luigi says:

      The OBR is nothing more than a Westminster propaganda unit, full of tory placemen, paid to spout any shite as long as it supports the WM government. Jobs for the boys – that’s how the establishment works. How many of Cameron’s pals are in the OBR? The odd disagreement with WM is thrown in just to maintain the façade of being an independent organisation. In addition to their exceptionally poor record in forecasting anything, this “independent OBR” claim nonsense has to be challenged at every opportunity. All one can say is:

      The OBR is establishment through and through.
      The OBR is as “independent” of WM as the IFS and the BBC

      Nuff said.

    13. george says:

      just for your information, a brief history of oil price forecasting over the last fifteen years or so:

      2003 – once we invade iraq oil will be back below $20. oh wait

      2004 – a new stable price will be around $40. oh wait

      2006 – $60 will be the new price floor; it won’t break $100

      2007 – ok, so $100 isn’t so bad

      2008 – it might break $200

      2009 – it won’t drop below $50

      2010 – it’s doing what now?

      2011>2014 – ok, so this seems more sensible

      2015 – it’s still holding above $60. if it drops below $60 then iraq will explode

      2016 – right then, that didn’t go well.

    14. galamcennalath says:

      If a solid economic case for Indy without oil was made, and taking oil as a bonus when priced high, then the Yoons would attack the figures in some other way.

      The Indy debate won’t be won on predictions and graphs. It will be won by highlighting the potential and resources which are all around for everyone to see. Even by Western European standards, Scotland is very fortunate. Self respect and self believe are the ideals we need to spread among the doubters.

      Faith that we can do what everyone else already does!

    15. Socrates MacSporran says:

      OK, I admit, I am not the cleverest when it comes to financial matters, but, can someone tell me:

      Are the quoted oil revenue figures Scotland’s 8.4% notional share of the total revenue from the North Sea, or, are they the total revenue figures?

      The reason I ask is – as I understand it, where oil revenues are concerned, it isn’t (at the moment) “Scotland’s oil”, it is the “UK’s oil”.

      So, how can the 8.4% notional share be bad for Scotland because we are “Better Together”, yet the 100% actual share we would enjoy under Independence be even worse for us? To me, this is the Unionist’s argument.

    16. Luigi says:

      The union/ establishment is currently propped up by two nasty triumvarates of influence, offering a thin veneer of independence and objectivity:

      In Scotland: (Daily Record + Scottish Labour + BBC)

      In the UK: (OBR + IFS + BBC)

      The Scottish one is crumbling by the day. The UK one is about to be seriously challenged during the euro ref. Interesting times.

    17. Dr Jim says:

      Aye but they’ll definitely get it right next time because they’ve had so much practice at not ever getting it right before, so that’s good isn’t it, and doesn’t that not bode well for the future

      Doesn’t it not? being definitely an indefinite science

      Or is it an art

    18. FortBill says:

      The purpose of this article isn’t to analyse but to create a headline, it doesn’t matter a toss what the content of the article is because very few unionist will even read it never mind understand or dissect its content.

      It’s the old theory if you throw enough mud some of it will stick to a few simpler souls and perhaps if they get frightened enough you might win a vote.

      It’s just another paragraph in the never ending better together campaign, the official organisation is perhaps dissolved but their legacy lingers on!

    19. And the next SNP rep to get a mic shoved in front of them will no doubt point this out.

      Aye, right. More likely it’ll be back on the defensive and wait for the next unionist shitstorm that’ll be along soon enough.

      Getting a wee bit fed up with the sitting round campfires shaking tambourines and singing Kumbaya approach.

    20. mealer says:

      Denmark,Norway,Sweden,Finland,New Zealand etc can run their countries successfully.If they can do it,so can we.Perhaps some of youTwitterists could ask Fraser Nelson if he agrees.Its a simple Yes/No question.

    21. Adrian B says:

      The OBR is about as Independent as Scotland was in 2014.

    22. ScottieDog says:

      Laughably on page 29 of osborne’s voice – the OBR, they predict somewhere between a 4% surplus and a 4% deficit. LOL!

      (It will be the latter btw)

      http://cdn.budgetresponsibility.org.uk/March2016EFO.pdf

      On Saturday your team are going to win or be beaten, or they might draw. Now can I give you some betting advice?

    23. I grew up in the sixties when this nonsense was being peddled by the unionists claiming Scotland could afford to be an independent Nation.

      They continued the same nonsense in the 1970s when oil was discovered, we couldn’t depend on oil because it wasn’t going to last long, we Scots were being greedy because we wanted keep all the oil revenues for ourselves,the high price of oil would make our exports expensive.

      Nothing changes with the unionists arguments against Scottish independence, they simply twist their argument to suit the prevailing situation.

    24. ScottishPsyche says:

      The Etruscans’ practice of Haruspicy was probably more accurate than the OBR in their ‘forecasts’.

      Revising their forecasts as events overtake them means they cannot predict global events. Duh! Who knew.

      As most of us are aware, and certain graph proponents refuse to acknowledge, the political decisions governments take are always more important than the raw data.

    25. One_Scot says:

      This is just the type of Yoonery I’ve come to expect from Nelson.

    26. Triangular Ears says:

      How can oil revenues be negative?

      Corporations can offset losses and possibly get rebates on the basis of this, but can this happen with oil revenues? It doesn’t seem to make sense.

    27. carjamtic says:

      Aye Right

    28. R-type Grunt says:

      I used to lust after an Oracle Delphi. Sadly, I’ve never been in a position to afford a turntable of that calbre.

    29. Onwards says:

      Yep, everyone got it wrong on the oil price, and the OBR didn’t exactly cover itself in glory. It is what it is though. And a lower oil price might actually make independence easier. Although it delays it for a few years until the onshore economy makes up the difference. Otherwise the volatility argument will always be used as a weapon.
      Come the time of the next referendum, it could be a good tactic to have a firm commitment to lock in a portion of all future Scottish oil revenues for an investment fund.

      In the meantime, the biggest threat to the Scottish economy will be the Tories making a huge issue about Scotland being the most highly taxed part of Britain. Discouraging jobs and investment here. (Assuming the tax bands aren’t matched.)
      They got their trap – with Osborne deliberately screwing the poor and disabled at this time.. in an attempt to give the Tories a boost in the run up to the Scottish election.

    30. Ruglonian says:

      Ah, the Tory funny papers are at it again!

      The writers in these comics don’t seem to realise that not everyone measures everything in money, assets and projections thereof (So fiddling about with figures is meaningless).

      To some, there are concerns way more important: the commonweal, the democratic deficit and the opposition to the weapons of mass destruction currently residing with us, to name but a few!

      Until the establishment, the media or anyone else who stands in opposition to the idea of Scottish Independence acknowledges this, then Stu is just going to have to keep on doing what he does so well (sorry Stu, you may be busy for some time 😉 )

    31. Clapper57 says:

      Fraser giving his ‘impartial’ view of why Scotland is too wee, too stupid and too poor to go it alone.

      Politics eh , Fraser thinks he’s playing his political ace card when we all know he’s holding the political Joker card….again.

      The Yoon parties and Yoon MSM all seem to be playing Snap with their doom and gloom take on oil , conveniently forgetting Scotland has a full house of resources to thrive as an independent country.

      However the Yoons like to play poker with Scotland’s future as they know the stakes are high , for them , should Scots vote for independence.

      The Yoons are so afraid that we may decide to play Solitaire that they are throwing the whole of pack of cards at us and are even using Tarot cards to predict further doom and gloom in future oil revenues.

      However I am more than willing to play patience as it is only a matter of time before we hold the winning hand when the deck is finally stacked in our favour .

      SNP x 2

    32. Bob Mack says:

      Easier to predict by playing Stone,Paper , Scissors. Use the winners guess as a prediction.

    33. FatCandy says:

      @Dave Beveridge – Couldn’t agree more.

      Whilst we’re on it, why do we elect the SNP? For one reason and one reason alone – independence for Scotland. I appreciate that broadcasting is not devolved but the Scottish Government should be starting an alternate broadcaster using IPTV or Youtube (read: New Technology) or something else?

      In the worst case, they should set aside a substantial amount of money in a new media “fund” or something that should be allocated to different independent news sources.

      Irrespective of how much money we donate to sites like Wings and Newsnet et al, there is no way we can compete with the Unionist press without help from the Scottish Government.

      Kumbaya, indeed.

    34. heedtracker says:

      Good example of yoons on going Project Fearing in their Scotland region.

      Spectator mag sells hardly anything and yet and as usual, there was Horatio Nelson sitting in BBC 2 Newsnight budget discussion last night, waffling away toryboy style, with lots of other toryboys too.

      Actually Nelson thinks toryboys like Osborne are going far to easy on all those UKOK moochers, slackers and bums out there, who he directly blames for Osborne’s debt and deficit failure.

    35. mr thms says:

      In 2015, Oil and Gas UK produced an 88 page report on oil and on the UK continental shelf.

      On page 61 it say production will increase every year. By 2018 they estimate that production will rise to 1.7 million bbl/day.

      This is a remarkable amount because in 2014, according a league table of production in oil producing countries for 2014 provided in Wikipedia, the UK produced just over 900,000 bbl/day

      http://oilandgasuk.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Oil-Gas-UK-Economic-Report-2015-low-res.pdf

      Some more information to consider.

      The cost of producing a barrel of oil equivalent in 2014 was $29.30 this fell last year and in 2016 is expected to fall to $17 boe.

      So we know production is increasing, that costs have reduced, that taxes have been cut and that oil companies have reduced substantially the several years of investment (on average £8 billion a year) to £1 billion this year. That saving will be passed to shareholders.

      Finally, there are several oil and gas discoveries found before 2000, that are commercially viable at today’s prices that hold hundreds of millions of boe.

      Perhaps the UK government can set up a state oil company like Norway to extract the oil and gas?

      Norway makes three times as much as the UK from that industry

    36. Clive Scott says:

      Stu says “To be honest, readers, we don’t even know how you deal with that”

      And the answer is SNP x 2 May 2016.

    37. Foonurt says:

      Thoan erses urr awe tae fuck, thurr heids burrlin lik peeries. Tryin tae haud aff, whits coming doon yoan Scoattish Independence track.

      “Hell men thum”, iz ma mithurr yist tae say.

    38. Proud Cybernat says:

      Sort of relevant…

      ‘Gallas’ – The Theft of Scotland’s Oil

      http://tinyurl.com/jfpr2c9 (Spread far ‘n’ wide).

      So, now that there’s no oil revenues to be made from the North Sea, London won’t mind handing those powers over to the Scottish Government then, won’t they? Oh – thought not.

    39. G H Graham says:

      Revenues are moneys received in exchange for selling something or levying a tax.

      So I’m curious to learn how one manages to receive a negative revenue.

      For what it’s worth, I used to manage a $1 billion manufacturing budget so if anyone from the OBR can pony up an explanation, I’d be delighted.

      And if not, is Russell Grant available? He’s used to gazing up at Uranus & making disturbing observations.

    40. Andrew Mclean says:

      What are you bloody jocks looking at oil for, its not yours, if it is then you will have to pay the big boys to extract it for you, as it costs more to remove that we make in revenue, all oil production all rigs will close and its finished so there.

      Look at what most analysts have estimated the price forecasts for 2020 to 2040 The forecasts all depend on U.S. shale oil production, OPEC and the global economy and these are at an extremely volatile juncture, even the EIA are not putting their ideas in ink.

      By 2020, that’s 4 years away, it is conservatively estimated that the average price of a barrel of Brent crude oil will rise to $79/bbl.

      After 2020, world demand will start driving oil prices to the equivalent of $141.28/barrel in 2040. By then, the cheap sources of oil will have been exhausted (Shale in America), making it more expensive to extract oil. (Source: Annual Energy Outlook, EIA, July 7, 2015)< 2015 that's a year ago!

      The OBR 2013 prediction for 2016-18 now has a 124% margin of error, is this Russian roulette masquerading as a financial instrument?

      What about bench price at $200 a barrel? In 2006, a barrel of Brent Crude sold for around $60 a barrel in 2008 it reached $145, in 2014 $100 a barrel, in 2014 OECD were predicting $270 per barrel by 2020! However guessing the price of oil as a benchmark of whither Scotland should be independent is the most infantile argument immaginable,

      So if anyone is absolutely sure they can predict exactly the price of oil, then you are the wealthiest man in the world, or a fool!

      OPEC forecast the price for its basket of crudes will reach $70/bbl in 2020 and $95/bbl in 2040, anyone care for a punt?

    41. cirsium says:

      @Socrates McSporran, 11.06am

      “how can the 8.4% notional share be bad for Scotland because we are “Better Together”, yet the 100% actual share we would enjoy under Independence be even worse for us? “

      Good question. Grousebeater gave this example back in July 2015

      Oil at $100 barrel: $70 to UK Treasury, $9 to Scotland.
      ?Oil at $50 a barrel: $35 to UK Treasury, $4.50 to Scotland.?
      Oil at $50 a barrel under an independent Scotland: all $35 to Scotland.

    42. Proud Cybernat says:

      “To be honest, readers, we don’t even know how you deal with that.”

      It’s ‘confirmation bias’ at its most extreme. The best way of dealing with it is, as others have already said, SNP x 2 + 1 x EU.

    43. MajorBloodnok says:

      Can we clarify what they mean by “oil revenue”? In the past this has basically seems to have been just the Petroleum Revenue Tax (PRT) that was used, which was at 50%, was being reduced to 35% and as of yesterday has been effectively abolished altogether.

      By that measure O&G industry will make no revenue at all, because there is no PRT. Also, how can the O&G industry generate negative revenue as the OBR now predict?

      This is nothing but propaganda to fool the gullible, by which I mean Yoons.

    44. Stoker says:

      Davy wrote:
      “How is it only media dicks that judge Scotland by its oil revenues, yet we are so much more.”

      Of course we are, Davy, we all know that but it suits the Unionist agenda to repeatedly use this industry to bash us with whilst conveniently forgetting to mention the truthful facts.The public don’t note the small print, they absorb the headlines.

      I’m with the Dave McEwan Hill school of thought on oil matters – convince joe public we can be successful and prosperous without the oil and we win the argument. Oil is a bonus.

    45. The basic question for me is this. Are we expected to believe that after 300 years of union Scotland is a financial basket case?
      If this is so then it is time we were out of the union.
      If it is a pack of lies then it is time we were out of the union.

    46. heedtracker says:

      http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2015/08/sales-of-the-spectator-hit-an-all-time-high-2/

      Horatio blows off about his mags giant circulation, roughly 50 to 60k a month. Lots of Horatio style waffle on this publishing triumph of his editorial genius but compare his dreary mag’s circulation with Wings over Scotland reader numbers?

      But lets go to the hated EU and say Germany, compare Horatio’s far right tub thumping mag with similar magazine’s there.

      Der Spiegel, circulation 1,000,000 a week, Der Spectator, 55,000 a month.

      Stern De, circulation 1,000, 000 and so on.

      I seen no circulation Nelson, for your far right UKOK garbage. Cant think why the world’s greatest. most honest, most balanced and ofcourse neutral public broadcaster gets failed toryboy’s like Horatio on tv and radio everyday.

    47. Brian Fleming says:

      Point of order Mr Speaker….Oil revenues are not “in the Scottish economy”. They are in the Westminster Treasury.

    48. John says:

      Oh for goodness sake , this is relentless, they even have me starting to think Scotland is a basket case . Time they just threw us out , lock stock and barrel and be done with us , what’s holding them back .

    49. The Rough Bounds. says:

      I used to be and insurance salesman selling pension, endowment policies etc. When people asked me how much they were going to get back (what would the value of their fund be) I used to tell them that we don’t even have a clue as to how much a loaf of bread was going to cost next week.

      There are just too many vagaries to make an accurate forecast. All you can say is that if things continue etc.

    50. ScottieDog says:

      The OBR have recruited a Mr K Dalglish to their team.
      The latest outlook on the economy with their new appointee is “maybees aye, maybee naw”

    51. Breastplate says:

      So not only will there be no revenues from oil, we’ll have to pay £billions to have it taken off our hands.
      Gosh, this oil really is a curse.
      Those poor Norwegians won’t have any oil fund left after having to pay the oil companies to dispose of the horrible stuff.
      Thank God we have those broad shoulders to rely on.

    52. Kenny says:

      What’s that I hear? Did someone mention clean energy?

      SCOTLAND WITH ONLY 1% OF EUROPE’S POPULATION HAS:
      25% of the tidal energy
      25% of the wind power
      10% of the wave energy

      http://www.rusartnet.com/scottish-independence/economic-case-for-scottish-independence

      Project Fear had better come up quick with some headlines such as “wind to stop blowing, waves to stop flowing” if Scotland votes for indy…

      One thing that is often overlooked and, I do not want to be cynical here, but it is often claimed that, in the future, the most precious resource, over which wars may even be fought, will be… water.

      Scotland is so abundantly rich in water, natural resources, oil, whisky and fish that I honestly think that, on a world index of countries which SHOULD be independent, Scotland must be either in first place or, at the very least, in the top three or five…

      But, above all, our greatest resource is… our people.

    53. Valerie says:

      I suppose as many before me have noted, when you have nothing left in a tired bag of smears…..

      But, Horatio, you know the saying – you can’t polish a turd.

      Take your tired bag of smears, and turds, and fck off.

      It’s so lame and dismal now.

    54. Robert Kerr says:

      I am getting very peed off with the wall-to-wall SNP-BAAAD. headlines on all the MSM that I see displayed.

      I know they are trying to goad the more volatile into a response that will be shouted loudly to our detriment.

      All I can say is think it through all you britnat apologists. If you actually succeed come May do you really think that will be the end of it?

      SNP SNP EU

    55. Hugh Barclay says:

      Osborne’s Bullshit Repository, which IS The OBR.

    56. North chiel says:

      Agree with Luigi, this is an ongoing “propaganda ploy” .Whether any “forecast” is
      accurate or not is of little consequence ( in this context) , as when the price is ” high” ( it must fall/ impending doom for Scotland, and when “low” disastrous for Scotland/ not much possibility of recovering to previous ” dizzy heights” / therefore continued gloom& doom.
      This is then ” picked up & ran with” by the “unionist baton carriers” ie. BBC/ MSM/ etc .using the ” too poor/ stupid ” headline .This puts SNP/ Scotgov on the ” back foot ” and so it goes on.
      The detailed rebuttal arguement is not being heard or understood by the majority ( outside of Wings readers) , consequently when SNP / Scot gov get any chance ” on air” or press instead of focusing on ” detail” a ” more effective ” , readily understood, and memorable POSITIVE message needs to be ” found” to counter this constant propaganda .

    57. Richard MacKinnon says:

      It is not surprising that unionist politicians and journalists make the point that the market price of a barrel of oil has made north sea oil extraction almost worthless.
      And it is not surprising that these same people will try and make political capital out of it.
      As we all know in the lead up to 18.09.2014 the SNP used the price of oil as a political lever to persuade voters to vote Yes on the strength of a Scottish economy based on oil revenues.

    58. G H Graham says:

      “Collapse in North Sea revenue destroys OBR”

      (Again)

    59. call me dave says:

      FMQs:
      Oh no! It seems that Deputy Deadwood is asking Sturgeon to reverse the tax cut for the better off… three times now.

      Sturgeon says Osborne’s tax cut to the top 10% better off was wrong and takes £1bn from the disabled and poor but reminds the branch manager that the real labour party supports Osborne’s measures.

      Like I said on Tuesday there will be many hidden traps for Scotland in the budget small print and much work for Swinney before the SG budget next week.

      However the ‘Scottish’ labour party conference this weekend will surely point the way forward.

      SNP x 2

      PS:

      Left the computer to defragment the main disk drive about 09:30hrs and come back to find I am now on windows 10 !!

      Like Bart in the Simpsons “It wasn’t me” 🙁
      Geez! What a day so far.

    60. Which eye was Nelson using?

    61. HaggisHunter says:

      Meanwhile, I am are hearing people repeat; ‘maybe just as well we didn’t go independent’

      Its the same old problem, the media that the vast majority of Scots get is the British government’s manipulative lies and half truths.

      How to circumvent the UK media?

    62. HaggisHunter says:

      UK must be the only country in the world that hides the news of huge oil finds and takes great pleasure when there’s an oil recession.

      Such is the state of our happy family of nations!

    63. Papadox says:

      How can Ireland and Iceland manage to be independant countries with lower interest rates than UK. Is it because they don’t have the curse of oil? Or is it because they don’t have the curse of the lying MSM not forgetting UK state broadcaster EBC.

    64. dakk says:

      Can never take Fraser Nelson seriously.

      She is really just Jo Swinson in drag.

      Even talks the same affected British pet jock cringy language.

      Yet another nother Yoon clone,which we are so good a producing for the London elite.

    65. Giving Goose says:

      Isleburn in Easter Ross laying off 200 workers due to downturn in oil industry.

      Good old local boy Danny Alexander (opps! Did I forget the new title? Nope I did not, you grovelling f***ing arse licker) slapped the extra tax on the oil industry thus putting in place the circumstances that have led to the 200 folk losing their jobs.

      Thanks Danny, enjoy the knighthood.

      Sadly there will have been No voters among the 200. Was it worth it No voters? But at least Danny and Lord Alistair Darling of Quislingshire are doing ok.

      But think about it No voters; Scotland loses jobs but at least you can still hum the Dambusters theme while slipping on the Union Jack boxers. Danny boy and Lord Darling are laughing all the way to the bank.

      The London Establishment is just laughing.

      Meanwhile in Easter Ross and many other places people are going on the dole.

      Good call No voter.

    66. Bob Mack says:

      Unionist Announcement ” We in Scotland now have the most devolved Parliament in the world with brand new powers”

      Unionist Reaction in Holyrood —– “But,you cannot seriously be thinking of going to use them are you?”

      The Unionist circus goes on and on.

    67. Arbroath1320 says:

      Look out folks … tin hat time … AGAIN! 😀

      So dear old Frazzy baby thinks the argument for Scottish independence has been holed below the waterline thanks to the … erm … OBR does he? 😀

      Ah the good old OBR the Westminster government *ahem* independent body 😀 that thinks it knows best so much so that it can NEVER get its figures right from one year to the next. The OBR must be about the only Westminster *cough* independent body that is the laughing stock of all economic bodies. 😀

      Of course we all know why good old Frazzy baby is pushing this old and withered lie don’t we? 😉

      If anyone is not quite sure then perhaps I may be permitted to enlighten you. 🙂

      http://archive.is/ioWwO

      I can only imagine that in between sessions of licking wee Ozzy the Towel Folder’s shoes oor Frazzy was instructed to go hell for leather on Scotland cannae go independent in order to deflect everyone’s gaze from the news about wee Georgie Porgie’s Black Hole. 🙂

    68. Almannysbunnet says:

      The unionists certainly seem to be exercised about the oil price since Scotland became a “one party state”. I’ve heard more scare stories about oil in the last 2 years than the past 40 years. Methinks they protest too much.

      During Watergate the advice given to Woodward and Bernsein was “follow the money” if you want to break the case.
      If we had an independent media we could advise our own intrepid reporters to “follow the oil money.” That’s where the big story is. Forget the great train robbery, Brinks Mat or the Hatton Gardens robberies. The biggest heist in the history of the UK is the stealing of oil from under the noses of the Scottish unionists. Their brainwashing is awesome to behold.

      I forecast this: There are many decades of black gold still in the ground and Scotland can still benefit from if set free. I’ll bet my forecast turns out to be more accurate than anything the OBR produces, mind you that’s nothing to boast about.

      SNP x 2

    69. Almannysbunnet says:

      And another thing, if the collapse of the oil revenues is “destroying the SNP economic argument for a future Scotland” you can bet it’s ripping the arse out of Osborne’s wallet right now.
      The reason Osborne has missed every single economic target that he has ever set directly correlates to the collapse of the oil price. The UK are dependent on it and Westminster knows it.

    70. Foonurt says:

      Wuv plentae ah distilleries tae chinj tae bio-fuel, sa fuck thurr eiyull. Alang wae hydro, wind, wave, tidal in solar wurr soartit.

      Thoan eiyull’s toxic oannae weiy, alang wae thoan waatturr-ah-life. Nuhin bit rammies in stushies fae thum. Let’s huv ah bricht, new Scoattlin.

    71. Ian says:

      It doesn’t really matter that much what the forecast is or was, it’s more important how the actual annual tax revenues have been used, which is a pretty good guide as to how the revenues for what is left in the North Sea & off the West Coast will also be used. And how was the North Sea oil money used? To subsidise 37 years of Thatcher’s economic & social dogma under 24 years of blue tory rule and 13 years of red tory rule. Can we have more of the same please. Pretty please. Better together – as in, all in the shit together? Somewhere dark would actually be the ideal place for these ‘forecasts.’

    72. Dr Jim says:

      Osborne may have thought by drawing attention to Kim Jong Ruthie she might have got more votes…but..
      as per usual the First Minister just pointed out, The “Scottish Conservative and we hate the SNP party” are simply saying

      We’re going to cut everything in sight what are The SNP going to do about it

      Except they used to follow that up with Nya Nya Nanyahna

      Now it’s just silent Oh shit Oh shit Djae think we’ve been rumbled

      Poor Kezia can’t cope now so has gone deaf with stress

    73. Dr Jim says:

      @Bob Mack

      Indeed it is true Bob, Scotland does have the most powerful parliament in Scotland

      Fair pumps yer chist oot eh

    74. Dr Jim says:

      Every time oil revenues drop it’s thanks to Osbornes long term economic plan he can get the money back from the sick the poor and disabled and Scotlands budget

      So he’s a success

    75. Dorothy Devine says:

      ah! The man with the strangled vowels has spoken and told Scotland its dependency on oil is buggered , therefore the entire Scottish economy is buggered.

      His degree is in economics is it? Oh , its in history and politics- that makes him an ” expert” on oil , economics, Scotland, the SNP, the Scottish people and all points in between , much like dear Gordon then.

      I am so sick of these lying bastards and might want their treachery repaid in the old Roman tradition ,

      “Aquillius was eventually executed by Mithradates by having molten gold poured down his throat.[4] The method of execution became famous and, according to some unreliable accounts,[5] was repeated by Parthian contemporaries to kill Marcus Licinius Crassus who was at the time the richest man in Rome and a member of the First Triumvirate.[4]”

    76. mr thms says:

      #cirsium @ 11.53 am

      If the Treasury receives $35 for every barrel in 2018, then it would be worth 1.7 miilion x $35 a day to Scotland.

      The huge increase in production of oil and gas from the UK continental shelf that began last year.

      (900,000 per day average in 2014)

      By the time of the Holyrood election after next, the rip-off will become more apparent to every No voter.

    77. Luigi says:

      Almannysbunnet says:

      17 March, 2016 at 12:49 pm

      And another thing, if the collapse of the oil revenues is “destroying the SNP economic argument for a future Scotland” you can bet it’s ripping the arse out of Osborne’s wallet right now.
      The reason Osborne has missed every single economic target that he has ever set directly correlates to the collapse of the oil price. The UK are dependent on it and Westminster knows it.

      I’m beginning to think that the rUK is far more dependent on the North Sea than Scotland is! Of course, it could never be admitted, and the official figures and sums are well disguised and manipulated to hide the truth, but think about it – aside from the black stuff, what else is the UK producing?

      If the oil price stays low, the UK borrowing powers may well dive. Another credit down-rating for the UK? Oh Dear.

    78. Clootie says:

      Macart says:
      17 March, 2016 at 10:56 am
      I can’t keep slapping my face like this. Mrs M thinks I’ve turned to self abuse as a coping mechanism.

      …now that was quality! 😀

    79. ScottishPsyche says:

      FMQs and Ruthie’s obsession with ‘free’ prescriptions.

      There are options – every registered doctor can provide a ‘private’ prescription. If you want to pay twice for your medication ask your GP to write a ‘private’ prescription. The money will be split between a fee for the Dr and the dispenser of the drugs.

      Or say to your GP, if I can buy this over the counter I prefer to do that.

      Also with regard to paracetemol (or any other over the counter medication) – if you are consuming so much that you have to travel to more than one pharmacy because they wont let you buy enough, then maybe you need to see a Dr and have it prescribed.

      There is a whole other argument regarding the compliance of patients who have to pay versus those who do not. Patients choosing between medication and food or between items on their script.

      Maybe the ‘poorest’ don’t pay but it only takes one episode of prolonged complicated illness to change a person’s economic status for ever.

      Free prescriptions are not a luxury.

    80. Macart says:

      @Clootie

      Heh, that an folk keep asking me why my face is so pink?

      You might like this:

      https://weegingerdug.wordpress.com/2016/03/17/dont-look-over-here/comment-page-1/#comment-27814

    81. Tam Jardine says:

      The drop in oil price has been celebrated by unionists like Fraser Nelson- it allows them to justify their position in this ludicrous way. Not for Fraser any searching questions over the ‘broad shoulders’ tripe we were being fed day and night in 2014.

      Had The oil price not dropped they would have moulded their anti-independence message around something else. They would have invented another crisis to focus exclusively on whether it be demographics or trade.

      None of the media yoons are ever going to agree that Scotland could flourish. If and when the price recovers it will make not one jot of difference.

      Anyone can predict oil revenues 5 years down the line but no one can do so with any hope of accuracy.

      Three inescapable truths are, well, inescapable: Westminster should have created an oil fund in the 70s and 80s, the have not stewarded the industry in Scotland well at all (otherwise why have we been so unprepared for the current slump) and any future revenues will go a lot further divided by 5 million as divided by 65 million.

    82. Dr Jim says:

      Osborne said the Scotch Whisky Industry was 20% of the UKs exports
      Thing is, he never mentioned that 70% of UK Gin is made in Scotland too

      So if that was just Scotlands exports would that not be a lot
      not that I’m great with sums but it seems like it would be worth more to us if we got all the percents

      I think Ozzy and his Tory chums are not Truthy people and it looks like it’s all unraveling just like his PIP wheeze where he seems to be depending on folks limbs growing back or Parkinsons getting better or MS, you get the point

      It’s all a bit let’s hide it while nobody’s looking politics

      The Tories pals in the Media might turn on them and if they do they’ll be sussed

      Thank God the Media run the country and not the Government eh PHEW!!

    83. heedtracker says:

      Three inescapable truths are, well, inescapable: Westminster should have created an oil fund in the 70s and 80s,

      They did, they do do!

      Where do you think the giant infrastructure spends in the south east of yoon land and merry olde London came from?

      Its not as eye catching as an oil pension fund like Norway’s, who actually have several funded by the Norwegian oil and gas sector. Ask any red or blue tory. They only lie though, tell you you’re safe and secure in teamGB and

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vgk2EvVr–I

      Very funny, coz its true.

    84. Roland Smith says:

      I had a hernia operation recently, day case. As part of my pain control on discharge, apart from a few opiates I was given a box of iboprofen and a box of Paracetamol. Standard thing to do, as depending on level of post operative pain that determines the pain control you need. Also paracetemol can be taken with the opiates at the same time.
      I wish politicians would actually educate themselves before exercising their ability to increase climate change. Its worth reading all the documents that initiated the process of making prescriptions free, a policy supported by all parties at the time with the exception of the Tories.

    85. Valerie says:

      @ScottishPsyche

      I agree with your post, and the points.

      I pay for my own antihistamines over the counter, every year. However, due to 2 ruptured discs in my lower back, I have 2 different meds on repeat prescription, to manage the pain, which is variable.

      I’m on a low income, consider myself fairly lucky and fit, but I do really appreciate getting those meds free. It keeps me managing my back myself, away from the doctors, and I have paid taxes all my life.

      The Scottish gov’t has also commented that quite a bit of money has been saved in administration costs.

      I know of many folk south of the Border, who have low level issues like me, and envy our system.

    86. Dr Jim says:

      The MOD are blocking a three Turbine wind facility because they say it will interfere with their Radar

      Now I don’t know much about Radar but does that mean there are no planes flying over places like Denmark to name but one

      What’s that I smell

    87. Peter Macbeastie says:

      Ah, the good old OBR.

      Always trailed by the ever reliable BBC as ‘the independent Office of Budget Responsibility.’

      Set up by the Tories. Issuing dire figures about the oil industry which in some way is only a ‘bad thing’ for Scotland. About as independent as Scotland currently is, but certainly there’s a few words starting with I that are accurate.

      Incompetent being foremost among them.

      The glee the unionists erupt with every single time figures produced from the ‘independent’ OBR, or the GERS figures everyone knows, but seem shy about mentioning, are produced as a method to undermine calls for independence, is going to be well used as method to point out the Yoons are uncaring about Scotland. ‘Job losses in the oil industry prove an independent Scotland wouldn’t work.’

      It’s the unmitigated glee they use this kind of crap as a stick to beat the SNP with ignoring at all times every other revenue stream available in Scotland. Even the flawed figures of the GERS report show the other revenue… just nowhere near all of it.

    88. Proud Cybernat says:

      O/T

      Just want to say that Scotland may now have some more responsibilities/powers BUT what has been delivered is FAR from the promised ‘Vow’ of Dev-Max / Federalism / Home Rule. Are we all to jump up and down in jubilation that London’s ruse of trying to sneak £7 billion in detriment out of Scotland’s budget was rumbled by the SNP, forcing a London climbdown? Are we to be satisfied with that?

      Like hell we will. If London thinks things will now die down, that we will now somehow forget THEIR VOW then they are deluded. This IndyRef#1 fraud will NEVER be forgotten. Scotland was CONNED and I demand a rerun of the IndyRef.

      And as for the nawbag Yoons. If your loved one is having their disability benefits cut then remember THAT is the ‘better togetherness, broad UKOK shoulders’ that YOU VOTED FOR. And if you now have to work till you drop with virtually no pension, then remember too, THAT is the ‘better togetherness, broad UKOK shoulders’ that YOU VOTED FOR.

      Every single one of you were warned what would happen if we remained in this rotten, corrupt Union. And slowly but surely, that grim UKOK reality is coming to bite you right on the arse. You didn’t listen so have no grounds for complaint. Hell bloody mend the lot of you.

    89. ClanDonald says:

      I bet that the fiscal black hole that Gideon is pretending won’t be there in 2020 isn’t a black hole at all, but will be filled by increases in Scottish oil revenues that they know will be on the up soon.

      Only he can’t say that out loud, can he? It’s a secret.

    90. Jack Murphy says:

      OT. First Minister’s Questions,Thursday the 17th March 2016.
      Now Archived,and ready to view on Scottish Parliament TV:-
      http://tinyurl.com/j42te27

    91. ScottishPsyche says:

      Thanks to those who responded.

      I realise it was a bit of an off topic rant but these arguments come up time and again and as Valerie and Roland Smith have commented, there are reasons for prescribing as part of overall management of illness.

      I get quite annoyed with the paracetemol argument in particular – it is very often the painkiller of choice in hospitals but has to carefully managed as it is a drug with many interactions and side-effects.

      The reason it was regulated was because of its role in many parasuicides and suicides. Large amounts of the drug were to hand in impulsive or alcohol related events. Opportunity plays a huge role in lots of human behaviour.

      Imagine telling a post-op patient like Roland to go to his pharmacy and buy the amount of painkillers he would have needed. It is ridiculous. It is part of your treatment and should be not be subject to ability to pay.

    92. Fireproofjim says:

      OT
      Just a wee reminder that there are only 14 days to go for the Wings fund raiser.
      Only 2200 of the many, many thousands of followers have subscribed. It would be great to see the numbers going up.
      It is easy, and even £10 off your credit card is £10 towards supporting the best antidote to the lying national press and the BBC.
      Give more if you can.

    93. heedtracker says:

      And as for the nawbag Yoons. If your loved one is having their disability benefits cut then remember THAT is the ‘better togetherness, broad UKOK shoulders’ that YOU VOTED FOR.

      They’re monetarists. Extracting this allowance from the disable is the direct opposite of pretty basic multiplier economics. These allowances would have gone directly into the economy whereas tax breaks for the better off takes it almost completely out.

      Poverty does make you saver though, is the toryboy plan. Funny how not one disabled human being has been seen or heard on the ever more grotesque BBC. Its not any different from their propaganda black out on medics in England demonstrating.

    94. scotspine says:

      Folk like Fraser, Bird, Brewer, Neil, Adam, I could go on………really have nothing to say or offer that I am remotely interested in hearing anymore.

      Their utterings are mere chaff that is utterly devoid, desolate and barren of any hope or promise and imagination for a Country such as ours.

    95. ian says:

      I dont know if many have considered this but i believe many of the less well informed voters in Scotland dont know where their taxes go.They think Scotland gets all the money from oil and all the other taxes collected in Scotland.They hav’nt a clue about the block grant or Barnett and probably believe we are a basket case without oil.I intend asking my brother and his no voting wife this exact question.We have to find a away to inform the less well informed in a simple and easy way without it turning into a fanatical rant,difficult to do i know from personal experience.

    96. Although the new NG fields at Laggan, Tormore, can, just about, make a return at current natural gas prices, it seems that Russia is considering doing a Saudi style price drop to thwart US plans to supply up to 2/3 of Europe’s gas requirement with shipments of LNG.

    97. Iain More says:

      As I told an English Kipper this morning, imagine what an Independent Ingerland could have done without the economic basket cases that are Scotland and the EU hinging roond its neck.

      Meanwhile the Brit Nat Press and Media is saying little about next weeks OPEC meeting. The response of the Oil and Gas industry to the Budget was predictable in that they claim George the axe Osborne didn’t go far enough and I fully expect another round of redundancies to be announced, no doubt for days before the Holyrood Elections.

      Meanwhile on savings – Where is the UKs Oil Fund? Well it isn’t in a lifetime ISA!

    98. gus1940 says:

      I wonder what Horatio’s boss has to say about his lunatic utterances.

      I think he originally came from Paisley name of Neil.

    99. Bob Mack says:

      @Iain,

      I explained GERS to a couple of people this way.

      Firstly,remember there is no way of knowing how much revenue is collected in Scotland as no company or person is obliged to state where they raised the money revenue was paid on. It can only be an estimate for the percentage of population against the total income gathered. They call this the population share.

      Secondly, imagine a waitress getting loads of tips as she is very busy serving window tables,whilst her colleagues are not stretched at all. She may have gathered the most in tips ,but it will be shared equally amongst all the waitresses.

      That is the situation for Scotland . Whilst we think we know there is a strong economy, actually proving it would be nigh on impossible ,because no – one has accurate figures. Westminster depends on this to cause uncertainty and hence is reluctant to give Scotland full tax collecting powers,

    100. Proud Cybernat says:

      O/T

      You have to love the SNP – a true party of principle who really do stand up for Scotland and who do not play by Westminster’s ‘rules’. For example, in the recent Sunday Trading vote:

      “Ministers say the party was offered incentives including more VIP status if its 54 MPs abstained in last week’s Commons vote.

      One perk was said to be a seat on the Queen’s Privy Council for SNP deputy leader Stewart Hosie, earning him the title “Right Honourable”. – The Sun

      And the SNP told them where to shove their perks and titles. I mean, can you just imagine any of the previous SLAB lot turning down such perks and the chance to be “Right Honorable”? Fat chance.

      Just brilliant. What can Westminster do when they can no longer bribe our representatives or play by the WM ‘rules’? Suck it up and GIRFUYs. Keep it up SNP.

      SNP X 2 + EU

    101. Nana says:

      O/T

      Oops Georgie boy some tories getting feisty or perhaps their constituents are getting angry.

      http://archive.is/VYLVy

    102. gerry parker says:

      The trouble is that the unionists really need to think before they speak, and they’re not genetically programmed to do that.

    103. galamcennalath says:

      ian says:

      “We have to find a away to inform the less well informed in a simple and easy”

      Perhaps the analogy of handing over an unopened pay packet which might include overtime and bonuses. The person earning the money doesn’t ever know what’s in the packet.

      Then they are handed back some money to pay for some essentials.

      The rest of the money (unknown amount) gets used partly for everyone’s benefit, partly for other’s benefit. However the earner is never actually told where their money goes.

    104. Foonurt says:

      Thuv new, fancy radar, thit tells thum plane fae windmull.

    105. Proud Cybernat says:

      @ galamcennalath

      “Then they are handed back some money to pay for some essentials.

      The rest of the money (unknown amount) gets used partly for everyone’s benefit, partly for other’s benefit. However the earner is never actually told where their money goes.”

      Except, what the UK Treasury are trying to convince us of is that there wasn’t enough in our own wage packet to cover our own costs of getting to work, buying lunch etc and that they had to give us something out of their wage packet to ‘subsidise’ us.

      But we only have to take their word as to how much was in our wage packet. And we’ll never get to know what was in their wage packet (or where their money came from). Oh, and they insist on spending our money on buying us Trident cheese (and other things) that we don’t like or need.

    106. Broch Landers says:

      Question: should Wings expand to become a full-on news site, with its own online telly and everything?

    107. Stewart Dredge says:

      At the end of 2013, the Financial Times reminds us of the OBR’s own caveats in relation to its predictions “The OBR has itself stressed that forecasting oil revenues is notoriously difficult given the complex interplay of production levels, energy prices and capital investment by companies.” So why, we wonder, do they even bother doing it!

    108. Arbroath1320 says:

      Nana says:
      17 March, 2016 at 3:11 pm

      O/T

      Oops Georgie boy some tories getting feisty or perhaps their constituents are getting angry.

      http://archive.is/VYLVy

      There is a phrase that springs to mind here Nana.

      It goes something like “He has cut too far … too fast … and into the bone!”

      Folks don’t like it when they get cut into the bone! 😀

    109. Andy-B says:

      O/T Rev, I do apologise.

      Can any of you guys, and gals validate this.

      Thanks.

      https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2016/03/corruption-smells-like-burning-human-fleh/#comment-583962

    110. Papko says:

      Nobody can predict the future , (Even Warren Buffet lost 250 million investing in Irish banks one prior to the collapse )

      The debate has moved on from economics , its Independence no matter what , come hell or high water , (or bread and water for that matter )

      We may suffer for a few years after Indy , till the new industries and high tech gets developed , we may struggle to meet loan repayments , public service obligations .

      Nobody is going to die , (at least not much if any more than they do now )

      its what happens after 10 years of Austerity max that counts , that’s when we cry havoc and let slip .

    111. ScottieDog says:

      Total UK debt – £6.5 Trillion

      UK Gov debt £1.6 Trillion.
      Almost £1 trillion of which was bailing out the financial sector after its excessive creation of private debt.
      Around a quarter of the £1.6Trillion is effectively cancelled after the Bank of England’s asset purchase programme.

      Leaving £5.0 trillion of private sector debt.

      Tory and blairite solution – grow the economy by further increasing the amount of private debt….

      We know where it ends.

    112. Peter says:

      Can we get one thing straight about Scotland and oil revenues, please? The biggest single benefit of North Sea oil is the tax paid by the oil companies. Not one penny of this tax revenue benefits Scotland directly – it all goes straight to the London Treasury without touching the sides and without stopping off in Scotland on the way.
      However, if Scotland were independent these taxes would no longer disappear into the black hole that is the London Treasury, but would accrue to the Scottish Treasury instead. Thus Scotland (which gets no direct benefit at present) would benefit from North Sea oil revenues – albeit by a smaller amount than would have been the case a few years ago, and would be better off than as part of the Union.

    113. Kev says:

      Apologies if already posted but positive signs that Scots are increasingly ignoring the pish spouted every day by Nelson and his ilk:

      http://news.scotland.gov.uk/News/Trust-in-Scottish-Government-highest-since-1999-2402.aspx

    114. Scott says:

      Having emailed Nelson about his tweet this is his reply.

      I think Scotland can be independent – but the price for this would be massive austerity now that North Sea oil revenue is zero

      This man from Nairn with his funny voice it really makes me sick how they like to run down Scotland.

    115. Fairliered says:

      During WW2, the opposition propaganda was courtesy of Lord Haw Haw.
      Now we have an entire House of Lords Haw Haw.

    116. Tedioustantrums says:

      Don’t the Yoons get it? It doesn’t matter what projections are made or tricks played we will still want independence. No ifs buts and whatever’s. We would just come up with a plan and make it work and keep on doing what would be needed to make our country great again.
      Oil, whisky, financial services, fishing rights, Cattle breeding etc. Etc. Etc.
      We know the Yoons will do everything they can to try to stop us.

      Ask them a simple question? Why, if we are so crap, does Westminster and the establishment want us to remain? A question they can never answer or the games a bogey for them.

    117. Proud Cybernat says:

      “New findings from the 2015 Scottish Social Attitudes (SSA) survey, published today, show that 73 per cent of people in Scotland trusted the Scottish Government, compared with 23 per cent who trusted the UK Government.”

      Says the Scottish Govt website.

      But when filtered through the lens of the Colonial Media, will now read:

      “Bleak findings from the 2015 Scottish Social Attitudes (SSA) survey show that almost a third of people in Scotland do not trust the Scottish Government.”

      That’s how they do it, folks.

    118. ScottieDog says:

      @Scott
      Nelson is a neo-liberal. He doesn’t understand how economies work.

      They are all clinging on to a set of failed economic theories introduced in the 70s so it doesn’t surprise me at all that he would say that.

      One of the key myths Nelson follows like other Tories is that the govt is just like a household and must balance its books.

      Just think about this. The UK debt has increased year on year since the establishment of the Bank of England – almost 400 years.
      How many households could run up continuous increasing debt and be granted a loan at almost zero % interest.?

      The distinction here lies in the currency. A sovereign currency issuing nation like the UK simply cannot default. It’s the currency issuer. It can issue bonds for ever at the rate of its choosing and folk/banks will always buy them because they are a guaranteed safe haven for money – unlike bank deposits. Not that we really need to issue bonds anyway.
      Of course the central bank can purchase the bonds – as was the case in 2012.

      This is exactly why Scotland must establish a currency working group now in prep for indyref 2.

      As we will continue to see, austerity doesn’t solve the economic problems because it takes demand out of the economy at the aggregate level. This is why GDP is down. The dufus Tories still can’t understand why.

    119. gerry parker says:

      @ Peter.

      Although we indeed get nothing ( but the Yoons say we do)I usually say to the Yoons.

      “8.7% of 100 dollars a barrel is a whole heap less then 100% of 30 dollars a barrel.”

    120. ian says:

      Scottiedog;Your point is well put and easy to understand but does the real problem not lie with the interest payments which have to be made.Its all well and good at the moment while interest rates are low but what happens when the rise?It’s also a problem should you not be able to grow your economy quickly enough and increase your tax receipts;The interest payments could become the real problem or is this to simplistic?

    121. Fireproofjim says:

      Proud Cybernat @4.32
      You missed out the obligatory “Blow for Sturgeon”

    122. yesindyref2 says:

      “To be honest, readers, we don’t even know how you deal with that.”

      By constantly highlighting it, just as this article does.

    123. Smallaxe says:

      I am so grateful for free prescriptions

      Ruxolitinib:£3,600 per month for 30 pills

      I would be dead now,if I had to pay for them.

      Please don’t tell Gideon or Dave,I think they have a store of

      Giftgas and that’s cheaper.

      SNPX2 + EU

    124. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Peter 4.11pm The Scottish Gov should be hammering that point home at every turn, but the dont, same with Whisky revenues.

    125. Ian Murray says:

      Scotland can not afford to keep paying for the poor management decisions made by Westminster.
      We must get out of this abusive relationship.
      I cannot believe the patience shown by Nicola in dealing with with “Gotcha journalists” like Andrew Neil.
      I trust that the SNP have a steady diet of advertising to dispel the nonsense we hear from the Unionists and their media lackeys and explain what is really going on
      Could be time for another Wee Blue Book

    126. Susan Macdiarmid says:

      Last year I predicted I would be a millionaire by today. Jings! I must have lost £999,900.
      Never knew I was such a high flyer!

    127. Dr Jim says:

      For the miserable Yoon types and Media who are moaning about their possible miniscule extra bit of tax because they happen to earn a really good living they can piss right off to that wonderful England where they will get a Tax break….but just remember..Once you’re there

      When you get sick your prescriptions aren’t free
      When your kids go to University it isn’t free
      If your kids are young no free school meals in case you’re to busy to cook or you lose your well paid job

      Is Grandma looking out for your kids from time to time, Grandma’s are great eh
      But there’s no free personal care when she’s old in the great Britain of UK England

      And that my miserable Yoon throwbacks is the difference between the SNP Baad and all of your beloved Yoon parties

    128. Patrick Roden says:

      I genuinely never thought I’d see a worse performance at FMQ’s than Johann Lamont would put up each week, but that performance today by Kez was woeful!

      Kez- “will the first minister refuse to give the top 15% of high erners in Scotland a tax break”

      Nicola – Yes I agree this is a disgrace and we will set our plans out early next week, but let me make it clear, I think giving the top earners a tax break while cutting benefits to disabled and poor, is the wrong thing to do”

      Kez- ” I see the first minister is refusing to answer! (laughter from the chamber)

      Nicola- what? I think any reasonable person listening to my answer would say that I made it clear that I would not be making the same decision to give the rich a tax break while cutting disability payments like the tories do – oh BTW the Labour party in London have said they do back George Osborne’s plans”

      Kez- “The first minister is still refusing to answer” (even loader laughing)

      And so it went on and on!

      What a complete joke the Labour Party have become!

    129. Arbroath1320 says:

      Not only was oor wee Kez unable to understand the extremely SIMPLE answers from Nicola Patrick but apparently Murdo Fraser (last question in FMQ’s) was struck down with the same disease! 😀

    130. Almannysbunnet says:

      Scott says:
      17 March, 2016 at 4:15 pm
      Having emailed Nelson about his tweet this is his reply.

      I think Scotland can be independent – but the price for this would be massive austerity now that North Sea oil revenue is zero

      As usual a unionist lie. I quote here from CW Energy:

      Companies undertaking oil and gas exploration, development and production activities in the UK are subject to three tiers of direct taxation in the UK; petroleum revenue tax (PRT), corporation tax (CT) and supplementary charge (SC). PRT (at 50%) is deductible against corporation tax and supplementary charge.

      One tier of tax has been removed. PRT, and from what I understand the oil companies could offset it against corporation tax.

      They still pay the supplementary charge which is reduced back to the 10% it was before Ozzy put it up and the oil companies still pay corporation tax.

      So there is still a “few bob” sloshing it’s way to the UK treasury and no doubt when the price rises again the floodgates will open. Nelson is either an economic illiterate or a fraud.

    131. Andrew Mclean says:

      Andy-B says:
      3:44 pm

      look at this section 114 onwards
      http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/S4_Bills/Burial%20and%20Cremation%20(Scotland)%20Bill/SPBill80PMS042015.pdf

      It is strange that our Craig accused the committee members of corruption, i.e. being in league with unnamed construction companies, and even SEPA who are in this great corruption?
      Rather than rely on this act, the government wish to leave it to the planning process, personally I don’t agree, but SNP BAD, usual shite from Murray

    132. Arbroath1320 says:

      O/T here.

      Bella Caledonia interviews Alex Salmond.

      http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2016/03/17/bella-interviews-alex-salmond/

    133. ronnie anderson says:

      With a staight face.You must be kidding Stu, you huv seen Nelson,s machinations of the mooth when he talks.

    134. Gary45% says:

      I know F*ck All about economics, but I can tell you with 100% certainty.
      The UK will still be in deficit in 2020, the towel folder will use any pathetic excuse to cover his failings.
      Just imagine this twat will be Pig Fu*kers replacement!!!!

      Scotland’s been scorchio all week, I have sunburn, Its all Nicla Sturgins fault, SNP bad.
      I must contact the yoony press, to highlight, global warming is the fault of the SNP not putting up enough wind turbines, and extracting and squandering oil from the North Sea.
      SNPx2

    135. Kenny says:

      I do agree that Scotland must establish a currency working group now in prep for indyref 2. I hope that this is one of the things indicated by Nicola in her recent speech in Glasgow.

      I am very much in favour of having a Scottish £, especially as I am convinced that the strength of the British £ is definitely on the wain (especially without Scotland in the UK).

      However, I do think that current circumstances might make it more favourable for Scotland to actually be in the euro. As an exporting country which, I hope, would try to echo the German economy in many ways, particularly with regard to labour relations, focus on industry, we could gain very much in the way that Germany has (unfairly, in my opinion) gained from being in the euro, which is obviously cheaper than the old Deutschmark.

      It would be interesting to think of a “petrocurrency nation” like an indy Scotland being inside the euro.

      Norway is experiencing problems at the moment, as they need to devalue their currency to remain competitive — all the time while the ECB is devaluing their competitor (the euro) and while they are tapping into their sovereign wealth fund (which means selling $ and buying Krona, again inflating their currency).

      I wonder if a Scottish £ might find itself in the same position? Appreciating too much against the euro and, indeed, a rUK £? It seems to me that it might be better, at the current time, to be inside the euro — but then maybe outside the euro at a later date?!?

      Scotland would have a VERY good credit rating and could borrow cheaply. Why anyone would think an indy Scotland would need to fall back on austerity is simply beyond me! And that is before we even get into the fact that austerity has NEVER worked and is simply a weapon of “class warfare” wielded by Tory psychopaths who understood absolutely nothing in economics.

    136. Craig Murray says:

      Andrew Mclean at 3.44 – that link doesn’t seem to work. I get page not found. Can you check it?

      I am certainly not accusing the committee of corruption. In fact I specifically state that the committees have opposed the change and keep trying to put the minimum distance back in the bill.

      It is the Scottish government I am accusing of corruption.

    137. Craig Murray says:

      apologies, I meant Andrew McLean at 5.30

    138. Arbroath1320 says:

      I think that would be a good move Kenny to have a committee of whatever make up to investigate and suggest currency post independence.

      For me there are two outstanding options.

      1) the Scottish Ryal

      2) the digital Scotspound.

      http://www.thenational.scot/news/how-a-digital-scotpound-could-be-revolutionary-breakthrough.7486

      I am not so sure about your suggestion of using the Euro however. First of we would not be able to use it from day one of independence and that is a crucial point when discussing Scottish currency after independence. The convergence criteria required to be met before joining the Euro can be seen here. Point number 3 is the most important here.

      Exchange-rate stability, through participation in the Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM II) for at least two years without strong deviations from the ERM II central rate;

      http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/euro/adoption/who_can_join/

    139. Valerie says:

      Andrew McLean @ 5.30

      I’ve left a comment on Mr Murray’s blog, on this crematorium issue, to the effect, that he makes no mention of the fact that the local council are in charge of local planning decisions, including the one in Haddington.

      The Scottish gov’t provides the broad bones of planning, with each local council providing their own interpretation and adjustments for their local situation.

      A good council provides research and consultation as to why a gov’t guideline may not be suited to their local conditions.

      As ever, with planning there is always someone who won’t be happy. On the flip side, a village in Coldstream wanted the local church to hurry up and operate as a crematorium, so they could avoid travel to Edinburgh

      I don’t get the point Craig Murray is making either.

    140. CameronB Brodie says:

      Perhaps Mr. Nelson is being post-ironic?

    141. Craig Murray says:

      Valerie

      There is an existing law stating that in Scotland no crematorium can be within 200 yards of a residence. The Scottish government is repealing that law. What part of that do you not understand?

    142. Lollysmum says:

      Derek Bateman has a new website

      http://derekbateman.scot/2016/03/17/in-the-red/

    143. ScottieDog says:

      @Iain
      With respect to interest rates. Contrary to popular belief they are controlled by the central bank. A good example of a country running up large national debt just look to Japan.
      A national debt to GDP ratio of approx 250%, with the issuance of bonds still at ultra low levels.

      Even the ratings agencies gave Japan’ economy ”junk’ status – even lower than countries it was supplying foreign aid to. This downgrade in no way affected the interest rate because that is determined by the central bank of Japan.

      The main distinction is between countries which are currency USERS – like Greece and the other eurozone countries who do to an extent have to worry about interest rates – they HAVE to raise revenue via taxation or borrowing and are more akin to a household. I would put Scotland in that bracket too in a currency union. Such borrowing by countries which are currency users does attract higher interest rates because there IS a risk of default.
      A currency issuer like UK, Japan, U.S. etc don’t have that problem. In fact these countries don’t really have to issue debt – it’s really a new thing in the history of money – one which benefits the financial elites.

      Here are some links to more info about interests rates and gov debt etc. they are very interesting but do run counter to many of our mainstream beliefs, so stick with it if you can..
      It’s not conspiracy theory it’s just how the system works and it’s actually alluded to in the bank of England’s own red book.

      The Natural interest rate is zero..
      http://bilbo.economicoutlook.net/blog/?p=4656

      Budget deficits do not cause higher interest rates..
      http://bilbo.economicoutlook.net/blog/?p=11627

      There is no need to issue debt..
      http://bilbo.economicoutlook.net/blog/?p=31715

      Our main worry today should be the £5.0 trillion of private debt in the UK economy. It dwarfs the national debt and can’t simply be bought up by our central bank- well not without a revolution!

    144. Clootie says:

      I watched FMQs today and laughed at the pathetic repeat of the same question by Kezia. Over and over we had the same dimwtted question.

      …now I know why. The sound bite was not for Holyrood. It was to provide BBC misreporting Scotland with enough versions for the union news. They select the best “statement question” by Kezia and then speak over Nicola to ensure her response is limited to THEM telling US what she said.

      They then followed up by LibDem Liam’s whine/accusation without a response.

      The manipulation is breathtaking.

    145. ScottieDog says:

      @Arbroath1320

      Totally agree about Scotpound. It is something I have really been pushing and have submitted NEF’s proposal on the SNP policy website. I get the feeling things are on the back burner just now though until the summer at least.

      The idea of issuing a debt free currency into folks pockets to boost the economy raises eyebrows, yet it is how money used to work and should work.

      I’m really hoping that the SNP adopt this or at least give it serious consideration. Once people get used to using currencies like this, it is a much smaller step to move away from a debt based currency like the pound.

    146. CameronB Brodie says:

      P.S. Plus or minus 50% of forecasted traffic flows, was essentially the standard applied on capital project Cost Benefit Analysis in the Scottish Office Roads Directorate, at the turn of the millennia. I doubt much has changed.

    147. sinky says:

      Clootie
      Typical BBC balanced reporting three attacks on Sturgeon but didn’t mention response tha unlike in England higher earners in Scotland get a raft of freebies.

    148. CameronB Brodie says:

      P.S. Plus or minus 50% of projected traffic flows, was essentially the standard applied on capital project Cost Benefit Analysis in the Scottish Office Roads Directorate, at the turn of the millennia. I doubt much has changed.

    149. Valerie says:

      @Craig Murray

      I understand the 200 yard issue fine.

      What part of planning permissions being the domain of local councils do you not understand.

      I read a lot of SNP bad on your blog piece, making an unsubstantiated link between abolition of the distance issue, and corruption of the Scottish gov’t.

      So if you have some evidence of this corruption, crems for favours, I will look forward to reading it.

      If, on the other hand, you agree that locally elected councils, should be in charge of siting such facilities, your accusation is a bit tenuous.

      The SG gov’t can’t win. Give councils responsibility, and they are corrupt. Take it away from councils, and they are power hungry dictators.

    150. CameronB Brodie says:

      …in terms of the methodology.

    151. Lollysmum says:

      From the Herald I give you today’s FMQ Sketch- Baaa Humbug 🙂

      http://archive.is/fcghH

    152. Andrew Mclean says:

      Correction, and apology!
      Craig is correct it is the entire SNP government he accuses of corruption, apparently on this proposition, SEPA, and others in this mystical cabal are conspiring to build cremation rooms in every street, all the beautiful crematorium are to be closed!

      Now this is an unusual angle of buffoonery, you know how it goes you only have to read posts by the lunatic tendency. Crematorium in full view? surely some mistake!

      Now probably when the law was designed emissions were to say the least unpleasant, and I actually do agree that the law should stand, but chaps if its pollution you are concerned about, the relative short distance should be the least of your fears.

      At present, though highly improbable a local authority can bury the dead snug tight to your boundaries, the reason that is not going to happen is that from when Labour abolished the minimum distance of 200 yards in 1995, it has never happened, due to planning constraints.

      I suggest people take care where they get their information from, especially when it’s spin and disingenuous support from those who profess to have Scottish independence at their heart.
      http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/S4_Bills/Burial%20and%20Cremation%20(Scotland)%20Bill/SPBill80PMS042015.pdf

    153. ScottieDog says:

      @Iain
      I should also have mentioned that you’ll probably find that if deficit spending is used productively to boost the real economy towards full employment rather than to bail out a broken banking system, push house prices ever higher or wage illegal wars, you’ll have a very healthy set of tax receipts anyway

    154. Andrew Mclean says:

      Ok the link isn’t working, but it’s hidden on full view on the Scot gov website, use a search provider!
      Just remember those corrupt government chaps are in league with the crematoriums, you have been warned, que sinister laughter!

    155. HandandShrimp says:

      At this rate the OBR will be suggesting that we sell our first born children in order to pay for having oil in the ground.

    156. Bob Mack says:

      What makes crematoriums such a burning issue?

    157. Grouse Beater says:

      Fraser Nelson, educated Nairn and Dollar Academy, prodigy of Andrew Neil, political columnist News of the World’, and member of phony Centre for Policy Studies, a think tank about as centre as Genghis Khan, ‘British Catholic’ through and through, and named after a character in ‘Dad’s Army, and a stiff column his dad admired, and his mum grew tired of.

    158. Ruby says:

      Clootie says:
      17 March, 2016 at 6:46 pm

      I watched FMQs today and laughed at the pathetic repeat of the same question by Kezia. Over and over we had the same dimwtted question.

      …now I know why. The sound bite was not for Holyrood. It was to provide BBC misreporting Scotland with enough versions for the union news.

      Ruby replies

      I think you are correct. Infact I came to the conclusion a long time ago that it was the media/BBC who wrote Kezia’s/Johann’s script.

      I don’t watch FMQ or Reporting Scotland anymore because let’s face it it’s total shit!

    159. North chiel says:

      ” misreporting Scotland” usual SNP/ Scotgov ” bad” again this evening,
      college lecturers strike ” and a blatant attempt by ” Glen Campbell ” to link the Ghanian
      president’s visit to Holyrood ( human rights issue) with potential oil industry business links
      between the Aberdeen based oil sector and Ghana’s oil sector.
      Why doesn’t he just fly down to London& query Osburne and Cameron on the China nuclear deal?
      or perhaps just ” grow up “?

    160. Andrew Mclean says:

      Grousey, remind me never to piss you off! 🙂

    161. Ruby says:

      Bob Mack says:
      17 March, 2016 at 7:28 pm

      What makes crematoriums such a burning issue?

      Ruby replies

      Excellent! You should look into getting a job writing Christmas cracker jokes.

      Arbroath1320: How do you do these smiley faces I need some here incase Bob Mack thinks I’m being serious. PS I like your posts they always make me smile.

      Andrew Mclean: What link isn’t working. I love getting to the root of broken links it’s better than playing Bubble Shooter.

    162. Andrew Mclean says:

      Ruby, why the links between a guy called Craig, his handler in SIS and the 77th brigade 🙂

    163. ian says:

      Scottiedug.Thanks for your reply.I was under the impression when the goverment needed more money they issued bonds which were bought by the banks which have a interest rate attached.They in turn print of a big bag of cash(not really but you get my drift)and on it goes.The country can always pay its bills as long as it uses sterling but there must come a point where they would be unable to pay the interest on all these bonds?Greece obviously borrowed money from many different banks in Europe hence the reason for their problems.

    164. Fireproofjim says:

      @Bob Mack
      Crematoria may or may not be a burning issue to you, but I say there is no smoke without fire.

    165. Bill Hume says:

      Oh dear….the SNP’s economic argument has been destroyed yet again. Oh tsk tsk, help ma boab, wad ye believe it??

      Well….actually…..NO.

    166. Andrew Mclean says:

      Just checking links, nothing interesting , not really relevant to anything, just ignore,

      Go on you know you want to!

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOErZuzZpS8

    167. Craig Murray says:

      Andrew McLean

      Sorry your link still not working.

      SEPA does not support abolition of the distance between housing and crematoria. What SEPA has said is that there is no public health reason for the distance.

      I do not claim having a crematorium right next to your home will make you physically ill. I am prepared to believe SEPA. There are however many other good reasons not to have a crematorium right next to housing.

      What the Scottish government is doing here is deregulation in the interests of private crematoria companies. That there is also a need for building consent is not a reason to abolish a perfectly sensible law – the maintenance of which was supported by 83% of the Scottish public in the consultation.

      I note that even you state you do not support placing crematoria within 200 years of residences. There is absolutely no need for the Scottish government to force through the abolition of this sensible and popular restriction.

      Those that know my history will find your suggestion I am controlled by SIS amusing. What you are, however, is a blind party loyalist. Surrendering your personal ability to think to follow a Leader is not healthy.

    168. CameonB Brodie says:

      FatCandy @ 11.41am
      There might even be a US Stade Department sponsored INGO that would be only too willing to assist in encouraging such democratisation of Scotland’s information environment. We do have oil. 😉

    169. Ruby says:

      I’ve copied & pasted a number of articles about the budget from Newsquest in order to be a little more informed. It’s all pretty confusing and I don’t know if I am motivated enough to wade through all the articles there is the possiblity that a lot of the articles contain false information.

      However I did start with this article

      £50 a year on your council tax to help pay for living wage

      Increase in living wage = tax increase unless those earning the ‘living wage’ have their housing benefit decreased by the extra they gain with the living wage.

      When supermarkets etc are forced to put up their wages then then will put up their prices but in this case you have the choice of cutting back of the amount of food you buy. However the workers who are getting their ‘living wage’ might also have their HB cut so that nothing will change for them.

      Perhaps the solution to the obesity problem is to give low paid workers enough money so that they can pay their rent without having to claim benefits.

    170. Joemcg says:

      Glen “hardman” Campbell! WTF! Pure embarrassment on Reporting Scotland chasing about those Ghanaians! Had a riddy watching him.

    171. Ruby says:

      https://archive.is/MdTsS

      ooops missed the link from my last post.

    172. Valerie says:

      @ Craig Murray

      Go and have a lie down. When you start accusing posters of blind party loyalty, just because some of us are questioning the rigour of your writings, makes you look nasty, and biased.

      On session 4 of the discussions on the Bill, the 200 yard issue is to be included.

      You simply aren’t thinking this through. Crematorium don’t want housing next to them either, if they want to provide a dignified service reception. The grieving families can do without ice cream vans, and kids screaming at each other, during their services.

    173. Ruby says:

      ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

    174. Craig Murray says:

      Valerie

      The reason the 200 yard restriction is back in the bill is because last week the Scottish government were defeated on the issue in committee. The expectation is that the government will again bring it back for the final stage.

      It was defeated at committee because one SNP member was absent for the vote. I have reason to suspect they were more squeamish than you about defending the indefensible.

      The crematoria in question are owned by private businessmen. What they want is to make money. At least three are now being built near housing in anticipation of the law being changed.

      It is not me who is “not thinking it through”. If “Crematorium don’t want housing next to them either”, then why is there a need for government to abolish the existing 150 year old distance restriction?

    175. Andrew Mclean says:

      The first line of your penultimate paragraph and the middle of your final paragraph are at war with each other, leaving you final sentence devoid of context.

      Your argument is corrupt, not my belief in your sincerity.

      Finally as you don’t get it,. The 77th thing was a joke, hence the smiling face! Of course I know you are nothing to do with the 77, fine bunch of lads they are too!

    176. Iain More says:

      galamcennalath says:
      17 March, 2016 at 3:16 pm

      ian says:

      “We have to find a away to inform the less well informed in a simple and easy”

      “However the earner is never actually told where their money goes.”

      What and break the Banking Secrecy Laws of the Caymans or Virgin Isles or Bermuda. You can take your pick where the money they have fleeced from us goes!

    177. Ruby says:

      Ooops sorry I was trying to post some emojis but it all went wrong I’ll give up on that and trying to read more about the budget.

      Sugar tax now that is confusing surely the Gov would have a vested interest in keeping people drinking Irn-Bru until it’s coming out of their ears in order to fund their spending plans.

      What will they do to encourage people to drink more Irn-Bru?

    178. Andrew Mclean says:

      Ruby,
      It’s called deflection, a pretence at a caring conservatism, and keeps the middle classes, who just love Jamie Oliver happy, remember the Gurkhas!

      The fact that a nicely packaged revenue stream is opening up is all good for Osborn.

      Artificial sweeteners may or may not have been banned elsewhere leaving manufacturers looking for a new market, ? But that may be my chip malfunctioning again!

    179. Crematorium are very dangerous to public health,

      the mercury from incinerated tooth fillings(amalgam)

      an average cremation releases 2 to 4 grams of mercury, data compiled by U.S. researchers shows,

      mercury is one of the most toxic metals and has been linked to the rise in dementia and alzheimer’s,

      http://tinyurl.com/hgxcy7o

    180. Robert Peffers says:

      @Socrates MacSporran says: 17 March, 2016 at 11:06 am:

      OK, I admit, I am not the cleverest when it comes to financial matters, but, can someone tell me:

      Are the quoted oil revenue figures Scotland’s 8.4% notional share of the total revenue from the North Sea, or, are they the total revenue figures?

      It does not really matter, Socrates. I’ll try to explain it for you but like yourself I’m not a financial wizard.

      The UK Treasury classes all off-shore Oil & Gas revenues in the entire United Kingdom as being obtained for the United Kingdom from an imaginary territory they chose to call, “Extra-Regio-Territories”.

      There is a definition of, “Extraregio Territory”, on the web in reference to Iceland but I assume the definition to be internationally accepted – it goes like this :-

      Extraregio territory

      The economic territory of a country can be broken down into regional and extraregio territory.

      The extraregio territory is made up of parts of the economic territory of a country which cannot be attached directly to a single region.

      The extraregio territory consists of, among others, national air-space, territorial waters and the continental shelf lying in international waters over which the country enjoys exclusive rights; territorial enclaves, embassies, consulates, military and scientific bases; deposits of energy and natural resources outside the continental shelf of the country, worked by resident units.

      The nomenclature of territorial units for statistics (NUTS) provides a single, uniform breakdown of the economic territory of the European Union. NUTS is the territorial breakdown for compiling regional accounts.


      But here’s the thing that explodes that definition in relation to the United Kingdom.

      The legal name of this legislative unit is, “Her Majesty’s Government of Her United Kingdom”.

      Ergo it is NOT a single country – it is legally exactly what it describes itself as “A UNITED KINGDOM”, a’k’a. a Royal Realm and it is somewhat complicated as Her Majesty also reigns over three, “Crown Dependencies”, that are not under the governance of the United Kingdom Parliament but seem to be part of Her Royal Realm.

      So the internationally recognised definition of Extraregio falls down on that count alone. The United Kingdom only has two equally sovereign partners and these are the Kingdom of Scotland and the three country Kingdom of England.

    181. Ruby says:

      http://www.pressreader.com/uk/daily-mail/20160317/281616714481159

      Just to add to my confusion I read this article from the Daily Mail entitled

      EXPERT WHOSE SUMS DON’T ADD UP

      It’s all about Robert Chote the head of the OBR.

      I particularly liked this bit:

      ‘In a recent interview, Chote said he liked economics at school but added: ‘My maths wasn’t good enough to be an academic economist, hence journalism.’ Of his work at the OBR, he said: ‘We can’t guarantee our forecasts will be accurate.’ At least the Chancellor’s erroneous financial figures yesterday proved Robert Chote in that assessment.

    182. ScottieDog says:

      @Ian
      Re bonds, it’s really the other way around alhough Certainly no mainstream economists will admit to it, although it is starting to change. Bond issue is just a monetary operation used by central banks to drain reserves out of the interbank system. These reserves are created when the govt deficit spends. The spending happens then the bond issue!!
      The central bank’s then buy and sell bonds in this way everyday to control the interest rate.
      So in answering the question about servicing the interest, they can do it at the touch of a button.

      The central bank of Japan are doing it on steroids just now buying up around 80 TR yen a month in govt securities.

      We live In a fiat money system where money has no relation to precious metals. The economy is basically a spreadsheet.

      I’d recommend watching Steven hail’s presentation on modern monetary theory here which helps makes things a bit clearer..
      youtu.be/qBpm5sVmGYc

      Also here’s another link worth looking at..
      http://bilbo.economicoutlook.net/blog/?p=1266

    183. Robert J. Sutherland says:

      Hello to all you posters about crematoria. It seems like an interesting topic, but it is way O/T for this thread here. Could that discussion not be taken somewhere else, please…?

    184. Valerie says:

      @Scott Finlayson

      SEPA are on the case for crematorium s and mercury emissions. They monitor each established crematorium, and have targets for abatement.

      They make the point that new facilities can often include technology to prevent mercury emissions.

      They have a slightly different angle on mercury, as it pollutes marine habitat.

    185. Ruby says:

      This one is from Lindsay Liar in the Times

      Osborne props up North Sea oil ‘on UK’s broad shoulders’

      ‘George Osborne used his budget to convince Scots of the benefits of the Union, offering tax cuts to shore up the North Sea industry that he said were possible only because of the “broad shoulders of the UK”.

      Figures from the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) show that oil revenues have fallen so far that the government will be paying out Pounds 1 billion more in support than it gets back in tax.’

      My question is why on earth would Osborne spend £1billion per annum on a commodity that is running out?

    186. JLT says:

      If it wasn’t so serious, you would laugh!

      Seriously though, it makes you wonder as to how it has come to this? The rich getting ever-richer while the working class are struggling to make their financial means meet on a daily basis. And yet, this isn’t the worst of it.

      The worst, is now a Chancellor, backed by the nation’s Prime Minister, openly declaring war on the disabled, the destitute and the vulnerable by making savage cuts to their welfare so he can save £1.2 Billion pounds.

      How did it come to this?

      Who the f*** …decided that it would be a good idea to go down this path …where the nation would hammer the middle classes for a decade, then hammer the lowest paid workers …before saying that it is morally and socially acceptable to now financially crucify the most vulnerable of our society? Seriously …what comes next? Kids can leave school at 12 to take up a trade; lower the age of consent to 12; allow kids of 14 to join the army and get a chance to see the world of Helmand Province!

      Remember …this is Britain we are talking about. Think about that!

      This is a nation that has Union-Jack Flag-waving at every opportunity; that portrays the Royals every day; that shouts from the rafters at every god-awful national event about ‘how we are a guiding light in this world’, ‘that Britain is a liberal and freedom loving country’and ‘that Westminster is the mother of all democratic parliaments’.

      This is also the nation, along with Portugal, that shipped 9 out of every 10 Africans from West Africa to the slave plantations of the West Indies. This is the nation that raped half of Africa for …everything by telling the peoples of that continent that ‘free trade’ would lead to an increase in the standard of living as well as prosperity. While missionaries tried to bring a form of enlightenment, the British State had other ideas. As the people of Africa once said ‘We had the land and the White man had the Bible. Before we knew it, We had the Bible and the White man had the land.

      While black slavery was being conducted in the West Indies, white slavery was being carried out in the factories and coal pits of Great Britain.

      The British State went to war with the Boers at the very end of the 19th Century because the Boers discovered diamonds within their territory. In a war that went horribly wrong for the British, they only won it by creating concentration camps and then forcing the Boer women and children into them and slowly starving them to death in a bid to get the Boer men to surrender. We were the first nation to create concentration camps that were literally extermination camps (where do you think the Nazis got the idea). We were the first to use the maxim gun on opponents (the Germans took the British idea again, and would use the same weapon in West-South Africa by putting down the insurrections led by the Herero).

      And that is not including the British injustices to the 9 million Irish of the 1850’s who at that time had roughly the same population as England (now there is only 5 million Irish in Ireland), thanks to famine and forced clearances; the various massacres carried out in India; the clearances in the Scottish Highlands; the 1920’s carving up of the Middle East that has fuelled the wars there to this day; and a whole host of other injustices.

      That is supposedly British democracy.

      That is the guidance that supposedly, we bring to the world. So, I suppose when you think about it …after everything that has gone in history …of course the British Establishment of Westminster are just going to shrug their shoulders and tell the most vulnerable in our society to somehow …just suck it up.

      Now I know how it came to this…

    187. Ruby says:

      Andrew Mclean says:
      17 March, 2016 at 8:48 pm

      Artificial sweeteners may or may not have been banned elsewhere leaving manufacturers looking for a new market, ? But that may be my chip malfunctioning again!

      <Ruby replies

      Good point! I wonder who owns these companies who sell articifial sweeteners?

      I wonder if AG Barr will be voting YES in IndyRef2?

      It was Irn-bru that got hit yesterday could be Tunnock Teacakes & Mackies Ice cream next time around! Smiley Face thing!

      Then there salt that is really bad for you (see hypertension)
      and I understand Baxters Soups contain mega loads of salt.

    188. Sinky says:

      SNP’s Tasmina Sheikh on BBC TV Queston Time.

      Hope she has been well briefed.

      Wonder how many swaty Jocks have been bused in to fill our 8.3% population quota?

    189. HandandShrimp says:

      I saw the front page of the Daily Heil today where fake Labour lovie Roden was having a rant because Nicola was not going to give him his increase in the kick in for the 40% tax rate.

      By their fruits shall ye know them 🙂

    190. It doesn’t bother me in the least what these Yoons Tweet now, I’m well beyond that, as I think a great many other Scots like myself are also not taking in by their propaganda/misinformation/lies.

      We all know it’s a load of p*sh what the Yoons churn out day after day, and I commend you Rev for your diligence and fortitude in your unpalatable job of wading through all the Yoon sh*te you must have to read. It is very much appreciated.

      Thank You

    191. Chic McGregor says:

      @Sinky
      “SNP’s Tasmina Sheikh on BBC TV Queston Time.

      Hope she has been well briefed.”

      Main point she should make is that even with oil price at rock bottom and using GERS stats without question them, Scotland’s per capita GDP is only down to the same as that for the rUK.

      So if we are a basket case then so are they.

    192. Iain More says:

      Who started talking about food? Whilst we are all munching before bed time no doubt. There is the iconic tartan tin shortbread – Walkers! They make tons of things loaded with sugar, salt, butter and so on. I suspect Walkers will also be horrified at the prospect of a Brexit and what it might cost them without all that Irish Butter and Cheese they use as well.

      Of course they don’t need to declare anything as unhealthy as they can just make it a luxury like Chocolate and slap the VAT on it! Charlie Boy has Walkers making his rather nice organic biscuits though, will that be enough to save them from the grasping mitts of the Westmidden Treasury?

    193. yesindyref2 says:

      @Craig Murray
      I read your blog. If you want to make an allegation, you need to back it up with URLs, and be specific, with quotes, otherwise it appears unfounded.

      I had a look at the current bill from Andrew McLean’s URL (cut and paste it to reform it), and thanks to him for the specific section information.

      What they seem to be doing is putting the responsibility back to planners, rather than having a catchall distance. That’s very different from being “corruption”.

      Presumably they will be leaving the usual right to appeal against the decision of planners.

    194. The Rough Bounds. says:

      I watched a tiny wee bit of BBC Scotland news this evening. It was against my better judgement but I hadn’t looked at BBC Scotland news for some time.

      I watched Glen Campbell pestering the First Minister with a load of leading questions about the visit of the Ghanaian President to the Scottish Parliament and Ghana’s civil rights record etc.

      When I saw that big policeman just stand in Campbell’s way the expression on that BBC stooge’s face was hilarious. I slapped my knees and laughed out loud. I them tuned in to channel 81 and watched a 1952 film about the rescue of miners trapped in a Scottish coal mine. It was based on a true story which is much more that anyone can say about BBC Scotland’s news output on any given day.

    195. @Valerie

      Have emailed SEPA about mercury being released by Crematorium through the incineration of tooth amalgam(mercury fillings) to see if they have any facts and figures,

      re: the Land Reform Bill, does anyone know if you can find out from Gov if there has been any lobbying by interested groups.

    196. Proud Cybernat says:

      One of the things I despise most about the many, many decades SLAB have been in power in Scotland is the cronyism and brown paper bags that were passed around. Their corruption. I mean – that is wat I detest MORE THAN FECKING ANYTHING ELSE. That is what I want to drive OUT of Scottish politics. More than anything. Labour’s poisonous and corrupt hand.

      So Mr Murray comes along and is now saying the SNP are just the same, are just as corrupt as Labour. To quote: “It is the Scottish government I am accusing of corruption.”

      I have seen nothing thus far from Mr Murray (I read his article) to substantiate his accusation. But I give him the opportunity to present such. I, for one, will consider it because I, like many here, am not a simple ‘cultist’ that will blindly follow a corrupt party.

      But I strongly suspect Mr Murray is wrong and that he has merely misinterpreted and perhaps misunderstood the facts. And also that there may well be a number of justifiable reasons that the Scottish Govt are taking this particular course that has nothing to do with “corruption”.

      If Mr Myrray is right then I would be among the first to be asking questions about this for I will blindly follow no one. I constantly ask question, constantly scrutinise.

      But, as I said, I rather suspect Mr Murray is simply wrong. And I say that because of the ACTIONS of the SNP, particularly its MPs in WM. They vote on principle and only for what is the best for the people of this country. They do not accept VIP satus or “Right Honorable” titles because they will not be bribed by the corrupt WM system. These are ACTIONS of SNP folk that simply do not square with Mr Murray’s accusations. I rather suspect with this outburst, Mr Murray, a hitherto reasonably regarded Indy advocate, has just shot himself and his blog in the foot. Big time.

      I will, of course, keep my counsel until such time as Mr Murray can actually produce the hard evidence that conclusively proves his claim.

      Let’s see it, Mr Murray. Put up or shut up.

    197. Liz g says:

      It’s a Wee shame some people won’t get their tax cut
      Mibbi they should have the right to choose whither to be a Scottish tax pay’er or an English one.
      But I do wonder if they will be willing to give up all the thing’s they as a Scottish tax pay’ers would be entitled to?
      I also wonder how the English Treasury will feel reimbursing Holyrood for educating the kids of English tax pay’ers, billing NHS England for treating them,no free UNI for their kids and back to paying for your personal care.
      As long as the choices were clear and time barred I don’t have a problem with anyone who makes the choice,to be an English tax pay’er,swapping all of that for a Wee tax cut but I suspect there won’t be many.

    198. Andrew Mclean says:

      Apologies for bring up crematorium, but I was pulled in, quite an emotive subject, corruption in government and big business and we have a hat trick,

      The question is can someone who professes to hold independence as his guiding light, be also so politically and culturally unaware as to push this agenda into focus, just before one of the most important elections in Scotland, we could se an absolutely amazing result

      Are we truly being asked to hold a true believer in the cause of Scottish independence , and the accusations of corruption in such a sensitive subject to be from the mind of one man, and that man to be devoid of ulterior motive.

      Are we to hold that a person has such poor political acumen, such misguided common sense as to be oblivious to the harm he could potentially cause, have we to succumb to such juxtaposition as being both the loyal Independent mind and the accuser of heinous subjugation of parliament by that very independence movement.

      Really?

    199. dakk says:

      Craig Murray

      ‘blind party loyalist. Surrendering your personal ability to think to follow a Leader is not healthy.’

      So now we have Crematoriumgate.

      I’m sure if there is a case for the Scottish Government to answer here our national treasure Glen ‘bampot’ Campbell of the State Broadcaster would all over it long before you.

      Your use of the capital L in Leader gives an insight to your personal motives here.

    200. bugsbunny says:

      “Dumbleby” on QT being his usual “impartial” self berating Tasmina Ahmed Sheikh MP who is talking about sugar tax and healthy free meals for Primary 1 to 3. He’s dismissing what she is saying as irrelevant. BBC broadcasting is impartial, don’t ya know. A waste of space.

      Stephen.

    201. Col says:

      What is Dimbleby’s problem with using Scotland as an example within the UK?

    202. yesindyref2 says:

      @bugsbunny
      If the SNP put up a bill in the House of Commons that Scotland should stay in the Union, it would be defeated by 400 votes to 56, and Dimbleby would report that Scotland had been saved having a £50 billion black hole in the economy by Scotland leaving the Union despite the SNP White Paper on staying in.

      Now there’s a thought.

    203. Ian Brotherhood says:

      A short sharp message for all you telly-watchers:

      Leave viewing of Dimblefud’s Roadshow to the professionals who are PAID to do so. They dutifully supply us with the MEATY snippets in due course. If YOU ingest too much of it? YOUR belly-button will work itself loose and YOUR arse will fall OFF!

      Avoid The Dimbler! Nae guilt, nae shame, nae rage, and yer arse will remain where it’s meant to be…

      Sortit! 🙂

    204. ahundredthidiot says:

      Straight Face?

      Been incognito for a while, now watching QT Dundee on iplayer…..interesting…

    205. MJS Dundee says:

      Way up there somewhere Dr Jim was asking if OBR economic forecasting was a science or was it art.

      Given the graphs, the answer is clear – no basis in demonstrable fact whatsoever – it’s definitely “art”.

      That would be “art” with a less than silent “f”. And can’t we smell it a mile away?

      Otherwise, the cremery discussion has been er … curious.

      It’s probably going a bit too far to discuss in any detail SLab’s likely policy response to Craig’s SNPbad cremery shocker. Suffice to say, it’ll involve billions they won’t raise from APD, stiff measures and hard-working aspirational corpses.

      (Jabba wins an Oscar for best unsupported actress in the b-movie adaptation).

    206. James Barr Gardner says:

      Ian Brotherhood says:
      17 March, 2016 at 11:44 pm
      A short sharp message for all you telly-watchers:

      Leave viewing of Dimblefud’s Roadshow to the professionals who are PAID to do so. They dutifully supply us with the MEATY snippets in due course. If YOU ingest too much of it? YOUR belly-button will work itself loose and YOUR arse will fall OFF!

      Avoid The Dimbler! Nae guilt, nae shame, nae rage, and yer arse will remain where it’s meant to be…

      Sortit! 🙂

      I wished I had missed last week’s Dimbler crap as I recently had my belly button surgically removed.

      However at the last check my arse is still where I left it !
      The main thing is Vote SNP X 2 + EU remain, show these tories we are immune to their lies and smears.

      Have noticed people smile more if your wearing a YES/SNP/WoS badge, Hope over Fear, the People of Scotland are now seeing it as it is!

    207. Rock says:

      What did the “independence supporting” The National have to say about this?

    208. CameronB Brodie says:

      Re. medications as part of your treatment Vs ability to pay.

      Both my folks would rattle if you shook them, they are on so many medications (including lots of paracetemol). What sort of barbaric society looks to it’s elderly, who are on modest income or pensions despite having paid NI all their working lives, to pay through the nose in order to have a comfortable death?

      A Yoon society?

    209. Ian Brotherhood says:

      If any readers haven’t already had a sly laugh at Rev’s joke about Nelson having a ‘straight face’, here he is in some (fairly) recent action with Andrew Marr and another political pundit.

      Two-thirds of the people in this clip are ‘Scottish’. Can you work out which third isn’t?

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

    210. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Rock (12.04) –

      Oh FFS, you’re back?

      Never mind what The National had to say about it – what do YOU have to say about it?

    211. Arbroath1320 says:

      Apologies if this has already been posted.

      Will someone please just shoot this useless, ignorant, brain deid, pathetic, gormless, self indulgent, egotistical bastard … PLEASE!

      http://archive.is/tpa9J

    212. Dr Jim says:

      You wouldn’t think we had an election coming up would you

      Every Arsehole wants to be relevant, you’ve got Unions, Lecturers, Business people, “Churnalists” Wanna be “Churnalists” Councillors, MPs, MSPs and the worst of the lot

      The State Broadcaster

      Just seems that everybody wants a bit of the limelight but none of the responsibility
      Let’s just get on the back of the Scottish Government and critisise the shit out of it

      Oooh Ghana’s an oppressive regime we shouldn’t deal with them, Well haud oan we deal with Westminster Tories, does anybody sane think they’re nicer
      The party who removes your entitlements to dignity and then makes you take a test to see if your arms and legs might have grown back
      I’ll stop there because they disgust me

      SNP x2

      Every scrap of power the Yoons have ever stolen from us it’s our job to take it back

      Labour Party, Labour Party I’ll give you Labour Party

      Union Unite bosses and officials Twiddling their thumbs in their Swiss Luxury penthouses costing £2.500 a month rent jetting around the world business class while they tell their members to strike for their political ends

      Oh Aye I know who they are (Socialists) Aye right!!

    213. ahundredthidiot says:

      Jesus Ian B

      Why encourage him!!

    214. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @ahundredthidiot –

      Sorry, I just can’t bear to witness such loneliness.

      🙁

    215. Cherry says:

      This the very first Thursday night that I didn’t watch QT or the Brillo…I’m so relaxed I haven’t felt like kicking the telly or run screaming down the street 😉 although now I’m wondering who did what to whom and were there Scots involved.
      At least my belly button is still intact and my arse is in place 😉

    216. Rock says:

      Why is Craig Murray increasing his attacks on the SNP as we come nearer to the election?

      Does he have a hidden agenda?

      How did he ever manage to become a Westminster diplomat?

      Why has he been tolerated by the establishment for so long?

      I don’t trust him.

    217. Rock says:

      Ian Brotherhood,

      “Never mind what The National had to say about it – what do YOU have to say about it?”

      Do you too hold shares in Newsquest?

      Are you voting socialist, Green, Rise or SNP in May?

      I have to say that what the Rev. Stuart Campbell posts here is what should be appearing in Scotland’s only “independence supporting” newspaper.

    218. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Cherry –

      Aha!

      Another convert, possibly…

      🙂

      Seriously. I’m now, what, three, four years ‘telly-free’, and I wouldn’t even consider watching it again unless I was paid a living-wage and given whatever rights still adhere to full-time employment. Even then…

      My major regret, at 52 years of age, is that I spent SO many hours of otherwise-productive life ‘glued to the box’. It’s a fucking curse which cannot, for many, ever ever be broken.

      Red Hot Chili Peppers, ‘Throw Away Your Television’ (live) –
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hB-WHw6uMWg

    219. Arbroath1320 says:

      From comments I have recently seen Cherry Tasmina Sheikh was on. Apparently she still hadn’t been allowed a word to say 10 minutes into the programme. Not only that but as per the BBC anti Scottish agenda any time she DID speak she was constantly interrupted. At least that is the impression I have formed from reading tweets tonight.

      No need to worry though Cherry UKIP had ANOTHER of their number on the panel … Roger Helmer! This was the THIRD time UKIP have been on BBCQT in FOUR weeks despite only having ONE M.P.!

    220. Cherry says:

      I’m a crafter so either the tv is on in the background or I listen to books. Tonight tho was brush the dogs night so I listened to Tom Clancy’s Commander in Chief.

      Better for the dogs I don’t get mad while in charge of scissors they could end up losing clumps of fur…not a good look on a Bearded Collie 😉

    221. Still Positive. says:

      Tasmina was only interrupted when she was talking about SG policy – the English are not allowed to know there is another way.

      Also when the Tories are in trouble they wheel out poor Nicky Morgan on QT.

      She seems to be able to spin their failed policies more than most.

      SNP x 2 and EU remain.

    222. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Rock –

      How I intend to vote is irrelevant, but here’s a thought:

      Why don’t you come to Waxy O’Connor’s in Glasgow, on Saturday March 26th, late afternoon. I will welcome you, guarantee your safety, and ensure that you get the opportunity to address the gathering with your thoughts and concerns.

      Many WOS regulars will be there. You will be safe, and you will be heard. You have supporters here, right? Well, some of them may also be there.

      What say ye, Rock?

      Up for it?

    223. Cherry says:

      Thanks for that LA will probably see any clips of any SNP badness. That’s the kipper with the tash. Looks like an old sergeant major.

      So glad to have Wings to keep us all sane! 🙂

    224. Dr Jim says:

      I just watched Hannah Bardell being treated in the most disdainful and misogynistic fashion by the Andrew Neil Trio of Portillo and Johnston
      Their dismissive attitude is disgusting towards the SNP and it’s just out and out vile towards the women MPs

      Absolute caveman behaviour and for the life of me I don’t know why the FM is keeping up this attempt at communicating with these low life nobody’s

      It’s really getting to the stage where the SNP shouldn’t be there anymore and should probably now be making that very point

      If the English have given up on even trying to be civil
      Dump Them

    225. CameronB Brodie says:

      Cherry
      Re. QT. It was all a dream, Bobby’s alive.

    226. mr thms says:

      I have not come across this pre-referendum article before..
      It offers a ‘What if…’ scenario.
      What if an independent Scotland copies Norway’s tax structure?
      http://platformlondon.org/scotland/

    227. Ken500 says:

      Scotland raised exactly the same Withiut the Oil Revenes as with them £54Billion. More than enough to cover all Scottish needs without Westminster interference. Scotland pays £4Billion in debt repayments Scotland doesn’t borrow or spend. £1Billion for Trident/illegal wars. Scotlsnd Could save £1Billion and improve health care with a tax on ‘loss leading’ drink. = £6Billion

      HMRC is not fit for purpose. Scotland loses £3Billion? In tax evasion. Whisky companies pay no tax.

      Oil revenues have fallen because Osbourne (deliberately) kept taxes at 60% when the price had fallen. Destroying the Oil sector and losing thousands of jobs in Scotland (+UK) , but importing more Oil & Gas putting up the balance of payment deficit. Scotland lost at least £4Billion+ a year. = Over £20Billion+ over 5 years. More than the so-called ‘deficit’.

      Total Scotland loses £13Billion a year to the Union, for policies the majority in Scotland did not vote.

      HS2 £70Billion (plus) and Hinkley Nuclear Station £25Billuon (double that) are a complete wate of time and money. = £95Billion (double it) = the UK deficit.

      Osbourne is an ignoramous, who has totally mismanaged the UK economy. Has not supported the NHS or cut the debt as promised.

      The attacks on the most vulnerable will ensure the Budget does not go through the Commons. Sanctioning and starving the vulnerable is not a way to run an economy. It is just incomprehensible. A majority of people never imagined living in a place where that could happen. The Scottish Gov can change this when Scotland has control of it’s revenues,

      The Oil revenues went to Ulster so they could live on par with Norway. 2 million people raising £28Billion in tax revenues getting (50% more) £14Billion from Westminster. = £42Billion.

      To pay for their ignorant sectarianism and bigotry supported illegally by the Unionist Westminster (for votes?)An apartheid State supported by Westminster breaking UK Law.

      Norway (5 million) raises £80Billion in tax revenues + the Oil fund.

      Scotland raises £54Billion but loses £13Billion plus the Oil revenues (missnagement) to the Union for policies the majority in Scotland do not support. Ie should be £80Billion. + Oil fund.

    228. Ken500 says:

      There have been 5 helicopter incidents in the North Ses in four years Without an Official inquiry.

      In April 2009, 16 people died when a Super Puma crashed into the sea north east of Peterhead . A failure in the gear box caused it to fall from the sky. UK Health & Safety rules were not followed. The service details were not logged. Maintenance Instructions were taken over the phone and not recorded. (as required by Law) The helicopter should have been grounded.

      16 People died.

      The UK Gov Transport Minister Robert Goodwill refused to hold an Inquiry. Despite recommendation of the UK Gov Transport Committee.

      The owners of the Helicopter company sold up two years later for £250Million. They should have gone to jail. The North East Community has not forgotten this colossal betrayal.

    229. Ken500 says:

      @ Telegraph

      ‘Osbourne faces Tory rebellion as his budget claims are labelled nonsense’.

    230. Finnz says:

      So the OBR only get their forecast wrong in one direction it seems. Which does not appear to bother their fans so much.

    231. Ken500 says:

      Rock makes some valid points

    232. Andrew Mclean says:

      In Defence,,, of rock,

      The price of freedom is eternal vigilance, and as true as that is, and as pretending to our case, having a watching brief over our best new friends is not paranoid.

      I defended you rock not because you are correct, but because I think you’re correct to be cautious.
      And you might be more correct than you could possibly be aware.

      Some people on here have laughed at the suggestion that not all fellow travelers are what they seem. But that’s ignorance embracing foolhardiness. I am not suspicious because I think it, rather I know it’s a fact.

    233. Lollysmum says:

      mr thms
      What if an independent Scotland copies Norway’s tax structure?
      http://platformlondon.org/scotland/

      Just followed your link but can’t locate the calculations & sources used to produce that infographic. Did you find them?

    234. Dorothy Devine says:

      Dr Jim, sadly if they withdraw from interview the smug nonentities will say ,”despite being invited to defend their stance the SNP refused to put up a spokesperson” – and that looks bad , fits in with SNP=BAD.

      Rock , I have had sympathy with your point of view regarding the National – had it existed throughout the referendum campaign I would have greeted it with unbridled enthusiasm.

      The fact that it only arrived AFTER left me wondering at its motives and that of its shareholders.

      Mr Murray , I have enjoyed much of your opinion but as others suggest you now appear to be delivering a distorted attack on the SNP – nose out of joint?

    235. Dr Jim says:

      @Dorothy Devine

      You’re absolutely right Dorothy, it’s just me getting mad from time to time

      Bit of frustration, I really don’t know how they do it, there’s no way I could ever do that job, lack of depth of skin and patience

    236. galamcennalath says:

      OT Assessment of current global risks …

      https://gfs.eiu.com/Archive.aspx?archiveType=globalrisk

      Ranked by probability+impact

    237. call me dave says:

      Kezia on radio shortbread getting a bit of a going over about the prospects in the upcoming election. Seems that some of the 50 pledges are no more and she left her manifesto at home.

      Her dearest wish she said is to grab Sturgeon’s chair and desk and get her finger tips on all that power that the Scottish government has been given so she can save Scotland.

      Must stop laughing as my porridge is getting cold!

    238. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Nana they never stop with the lies.

      The North Sea oil and gas industry has pumped more than £300 billion into the Scottish and wider UK economy over the last four decades.

      Its long over due that the SNP should nail this lie. Scottish People need that full facts on Oil revenues as with all revanues flowing South.

    239. Sinky says:

      Hapless Dugdale even claimed that the “Mansion Tax” was reserved but she can change all Council Tax funding and bands under Scotland’s massive new powers.

      Also she went unchallenged on her assertion that Council budgets were being cut by £500 million and conveniently forgetting the additional educational attainment funding announced by John Swinney.

      Labour need to be challenged on this at every opportunity.

      PS In last nights BBC Question Time Dibledum again intervened to stop the mention of any Scottish government policies.

      Don’t the sweaty jockstraps know their place?

    240. Almannysbunnet says:

      Dr Jim,
      It’s hard to watch our representatives being mugged on TV but each time it happens it stiffens my resolve. What effect is it having on the “undecided” viewer? I suspect it has the reverse effect the corporate media are trying to achieve. The public are not fools and hate bully boy tacics.
      Nick Robinson’s blatant lie, that Alex Salmond “didn’t answer the question”, while we watched Alex on live TV not only answer the question but hand Nick his arse on a plate, did more to open the Nation’s eyes to BBC bias than anything I have witnessed.
      Jim Murphy, Ruth Davidson, Willie Rennie, the mad UKIPPER and Gordon Brewer ganging up and howling, like a pack of rabbid hyenas, at Nicola Sturgeon did “their side” untold damage and they were all but wiped out at the UK election.
      Like I say it is hard to watch but I think those we elected are sacrificing themselves for us and deserve a medal. The more they are disrespected the more votes head our way. The more they are discriminated against, and make no mistake that is what it is, the more votes head our way. I have got to believe it is a strategic decision by the SNP. Shining a light on the naked bias of the media is chipping away at their credibility and working in our favour.
      SNP x 2

    241. Nana says:

      Morning Ronnie, Like you I’m so sick of all the lies. Just so depressing day after day of it.

      I was very sad to read about the Maryhill food bank.

    242. Dr Jim says:

      I just listened to Gary Robertson Interview Kezia Dugdale and I know she’s as whiny as her Moodievision cartoon BUT it’s here we go again with this State Broadcasters interviewing technique of setting out on a deliberate path of making a fool of the subject being interviewed and I don’t like it

      The reason is, it’s up to us the public to decide whether we like or agree with the person or not, it isn’t up to the State Broadcaster to decide anything, their job is to glean information on our behalf and asking a question followed by an instant intervention of another question to make the subject stumble over words rather than let them answer the first question is just bad manners

      It’s also insulting to us the listener or viewer and a presumption of lack of intelligence on the part of the listener

      I know, I can’t believe I’m defending Kezia but it’s more than that, I think I’m defending US from this horrible style of State Broadcaster Patronization that they know best on our (The Numpties) behalf

      Stop interfering in our business State Broadcaster just do your job which is “To educate and inform”

      Not to Fukcing decide, that’s our job

    243. Molly says:

      With all the issues in the World, Radio Shortbread has surely hit a new low-“does elasticated waistbands make you fat?”

      Is this the best we have , seriously?

      Heard a bit of Kezia this morning, Alistair Campbell been up to ‘ assist’ lately?

    244. Effigy says:

      Who is going to tell FraserTory his
      Work is only fit for the LavaTory?

    245. G H Graham says:

      The United Kingdom of Gordon Brown & Northern Ireland

      Enjoy your cereal

    246. Nana says:

      O/T

      Looks like a general strike is being planned, spotted a number of tweets over the last week. Aberdeen was mentioned.

      https://twitter.com/___JS2/status/710612912050737154

    247. Valerie says:

      @Almannysbunnet

      That is hilarious, what a great finale.

      I’m glad we have such talents, that mine the rich seam of comedy from Unionists.

    248. call me dave says:

      Aye Gordon is being kept in reserve, too early to fire all our ammunition, says the stay in the EU camp. To paraphrase “We will release the beast later” 🙂

      @Dr Jim

      You are right in your sentiments of course. It was a bit of bullying by Auntie, twice now in recent weeks if you count the farce of that interview darn Sarf!

      However many of us defended her on that occasion quite rightly.

      In the main though I think the Scots voters have already set her tea oot.

      PS
      Watch this space for the IT scandal which has been simmering away for a few days now.

    249. Dr Jim @ 8.44 am.

      Afraid that’s wishful thinking, Jim. The state broadcaster will always be that. Doing the establishment’s bidding, whatever unionist party is in power. And that task is to feed us propaganda, passed off as fact, when, of course, it is nothing of the sort.
      Thankfully, less and less people now believe their “news”, but they are, along with the M.S.M, a powerful enemy to be reckoned with, and they are not going away anytime soon.

    250. Dr Jim says:

      @call me dave

      I get the feeling over the IT thing, if Pacific Quay had anything concrete we’d be hearing the Klaxon aw the way intae or Hoose’s

      Or they might be trying to avoid the racist angle because it appears like there’s an unbalanced worker nationality scandal to be avoided (Nasty Furriners again)

      The SNP are very careful with this kind of thing so if there is a mistake it’s probably not them
      Of course that’s never stopped the State Broadcaster inventing stuff before

    251. heedtracker says:

      Another day of yoon comedy, often yoon tragedy though, from UKOK yoon owned Aberdeen. After the way ACC treated the referendum, even my cat laughed-

      Aberdeen City Council has described a spelling mistake on thousands of polling cards as “disappointing” and “embarrassing”.

      Around 175,000 poll cards for the Scottish parliamentary election on Thursday, May 5, spell Scotland as “Scotalnd”.

    252. Jim says:

      Kezia Dugdale, “Like the SNP, we got clarity from the First Minister on that yesterday, blah, blah.”
      ________
      It only took asking the same question four fucking times before that information sunk in!

      Nice to hear Gary Robertson tear her a new one on GMS regarding her fifty pledges which have crumbled into dust.

      Like the one about the Mansion tax which she has now seemingly just remembered is a reserved matter and could not be implemented.

      Question Time:

      I thought Tasmina ahmed-sheikh did really well on QT and was very articulate. I read some of the shitty comments she was getting from wank-stains complaining they couldn’t understand her, etc when the exact opposite was true.

      Also, did anyone notice how many times she was rebuked by Dimbleby for trying to join in the debate when the other panel members were allowed to converse/interrupt freely between themselves.

      Fucking asshats.

    253. heedtracker says:

      https://www.eveningexpress.co.uk/fp/news/local/aberdeen-city-council-fluffs-spelling-of-scotland-on-175000-polling-cards/

      In case you think I’m making this next ACC farce up.

      I had an Aberdeen postal ref vote but took it to the ACC head office in Aberdeen, expecting some kind of steel black ballot box of yore but all there was was a plastic bin with a huge opening, under stairs and completely unattended. The ballot box opening was so big you could reach in to it.

      Fair enough the northern yoons of old Aberdeen that do actually own ACC are ferocious NO’s but when you see how strict and fastidious western democracies are at polling booths, it was pretty creepy to say the UKOK least.

    254. scunner says:

      The Scotsman’s front page here in Edinburgh today is a full page advert for Outdoor gear firm Tiso, front and back – a full 4 pages.

      They’ve now sunk as low as the advert-powered Metro, a free “throwaway” tabloid, yet they still expect over £1 for their yoonfest.

    255. heedtracker says:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EBKu13_MBBU

      Also, did anyone notice how many times she was rebuked by Dimbleby for trying to join in the debate when the other panel members were allowed to converse/interrupt freely between themselves.

      Dimbelby’s just one more tory goon, but its establishment tory goonery well known around the world. Here he shuts down newly elected 20 year old MP Mhairi Black with that grotesque BBC goonery we’re all meant to be so fond and proud of, 2.30 in.

      Key word that makes BBC freaks really angry here is, “elected.”

    256. Bill McLean says:

      Rock – I’m frequently disappointed when The National appears to miss an easy target that we feel they should be attacking. Like others on here i’m frustrated by this. The BUM media, on the other hand, had me wanting to throw up on a daily basis with it’s lies and bias. So for me, the imperfect National fills a huge space in the mainstream media vacuum that is Scotland. The National has to be careful not to be seen as a propaganda sheet if it hopes to gain more readers and I must say I have noticed steady improvement in the last few months. If the National folds, as you appear to wish, what will we be left with and who will be the winners – you know very well the winners will be those who would rather Scotland was a region of greater England with no voice of it’s own. Cut the National some slack!

    257. Legerwood says:

      I don’t know what the IT matter mentioned above is about but it is not the only matter that is about to discomfit the SG.

      Park of Keir is bubbling along in the background and, if the media are on the ball, it will attract a lit of attentio

    258. One_Scot says:

      All those folk who voted ‘No’ on the strength of being told by the Yoons that Scotland would be dragged out of the EU, must now be thinking WTF.

      The hypocrisy of the Yoons telling us we are ‘Better Together’ so they can rule over us, and now what out of the EU because they don’t want to be ruled over, knows no bounds.

    259. Jim says:

      Dimbleby could not hide his disgust when he said, ‘We are actually talkling about the sugar tax and soft drinks, not about Scotland’s policy on meals for, (Disgusted Pause), children.’

      As the sugar tax is being implimented to apparently combat obesity although we all know it is nothing more than a stealth tax then what Tasmina said was relevant to the conversation.

      kids being fed a healthy meal at school is surely part of the answer and Dimbleby had no cause to shoot her down like that.

      As far as I am aware and unfortunately, Scotland is still part of the UK so if free and healthy meals at school help address the obesity problem then perhaps it it is pertinent and logical to look at policy in other countries to see what measures could be gleaned to help with a certain problem.

      Is it because we are Scottish? lol

    260. heedtracker says:

      The National has to be careful not to be seen as a propaganda sheet if it hopes to gain more readers and I must say I have noticed steady improvement in the last few months.

      This is where the National stops making business though! The whole of the BBC led media monsters everything Scottish democracy, everything SNP Scots.gov every minute of everyday. This much we know.

      What makes no sense is why the National do not do the exact opposite and thereby sell a lot more to at least half of Scotland that want Scottish independence.

      Talk about un-tapped markets. Turn on BBC vote SLab Scotland, walk past a news stand, all of it raging NO, hate SNP, worship royals, would it kill the National to take on this relentless British propaganda?

      Clearly they’re under the control of that yoon wet fart Cardham, but even so.

    261. Dorothy Devine says:

      Rev, have at last made my donation via your bank – my apologies for being so late but my January ,February and march are full of “important” birthdays.

      Love the Moodievision and the misspelling of Schkotland!

      I support the National when I know WGD is contained therein, I take on board all that folk say about it having to walk a fine line ‘twixt a propaganda sheet for independence and an informative ,appealing to all newspaper. BUT if it was considered necessary as a support for independence then it should have been in print by 2012/2013.

    262. call me dave says:

      ‘The National’ saying Queenie to lose (contribute) £k’s due to new land reforms.

      Don’t know all the details on the Murray thing on Park Keir development… Locals will know much more…just watching!

    263. Jim says:

      @Dorothy Devine

      I support the National when I know WGD is contained therein, I take on board all that folk say about it having to walk a fine line ‘twixt a propaganda sheet for independence and an informative ,appealing to all newspaper. BUT if it was considered necessary as a support for independence then it should have been in print by 2012/2013
      _____________________
      It came on the market at the point it did because it’s owners wanted to tap into the market of Independence supporters, a financial decision, not a support mechanism for Independence, that is my view.

      All we want is a newspaper or even television station that is balanced/unbiased and will analyse the policies of all parties and report truthfully as to their findings, not the constant SNP bad, Slabour good shit we have to put up with on a daily basis.

    264. Picked up two inspirational pieces in articles in today’s National.

      From the partner of the late Sir Peter Maxwell Davies who will be buried today in Orkney.
      “Max Tells you, vote SNP…..He would have been ashamed of me to say anything else. Every bit of his life was political. Let his death be too. Let Scotland be free. Let Scotland sing. Celebrate my hero.”

      In a marvelous article about my favourite Scottish arist J D Fergusson……
      “Like McTaggart and Partrick Geddes before him and along with his close friend SJ Peploe and Charles Rennie Mackintosh Fergusson had a vision for Scotland
      “It is quite possible to turn Scotland into one of the most wonderful and vital countries in the world, but it has to be done by Scots.”

      Musicians and artists. Dreams, ambition and imagination.

    265. Dorothy Devine says:

      Dave McEwan Hill , I have a friend who knew this extraordinary man and thought him quite ,quite wonderful.
      She travels to Orkney for the festival each year and he was one of the founders of that event so many years ago.

    266. Foonurt says:

      Spring wull bae here sin. So wull Scoattish Independence. Awe thurr leez, wull mak ah braw twintae-volume, micht need mair, ‘Encyclop[a]edia All Brittania’s Lies’.

      Meantum, leez… waatturr, duck’s, back. Fuck thum.

    267. Dr Jim says:

      Looks like Judy Murray might be getting the go ahead with her sports development project
      It turns out Stirling council’s objections were based on only 1000 complaints which sounds a lot, but in the grand scheme of things it’s a pretty tiny amount for an area the size of Stirling

      So it’s down to the Scottish Government at Holyrood for a wee scrutinize
      I have a feeling I know how that’s going to go, Judy’s 37 million into the economy or Zero Nada Zilch from Stirling Council

      It’s a no brainer we’ve got two brothers who are in the top two tennis players in the world, I mean the whole world
      What’s wrong with Stirling council, are they ashamed

      I’d be proud if they were World class Tiddley Wink Players for God sake, Scotland wins at something, I’ll take that any day

      Is it the Ken McIntosh cringe factor…. Eeeeek Squeekily

    268. Tackety Beets says:

      Sorry @ work so not read the full thread.

      Agreed Jim @ 10.18

      The Sugar TAX is about DIET and she should have been respected.

    269. Andrew Mclean says:

      mr thms says: 8:52 am
      #Lollysmum @ 7:40 am

      “the UK’s North Sea model has functioned as a form of corporate welfare, delivering massive profits to multinationals and minimal public benefit. With the second weakest tax system in the world, the UK collected only $21.50 per barrel of oil in 2008, compared to Norway’s $48.50 – less than half.”

      On reading that nothing I could possibly say would or could express my utter contempt! I actual lack the vocabulary to express myself; all would be verbosity.
      Save;

      BASTARDS

    270. galamcennalath says:

      Re Scottish Chancelor, Peter Bell has some thoughts..

      https://scottovoce.wordpress.com/2016/03/18/processes-and-tipping-points/

      “… Holyrood should exercise all the powers of a democratically elected parliament. Those powers rightfully belong with the body that has a mandate from the people of Scotland. To assert that a body rejected by the people of Scotland has a superior claim to authority is plainly anti-democratic.”

      My problem is … what next? After the last couple of power transfers, which will take 10 years to complete, WM may be even slower to transfer more powers! Indeed, if any!

    271. Andrew Mclean says:

      Dr Jim

      Surely you mean wif waf,? and not the world leading wif waf team, but two amateur gentlemen who try so very, very hard, but alas don’t quite make the grade, but are charmingly foppish nevertheless.

    272. Valerie says:

      Regarding the Park of Keir development.

      The site between Bridge of Allan and Dunblane, couldn’t be in a richer area, full of expensive housing containing articulate NIMBYs.

      I see the luxury housing element has been knocked back from 100 units to 19. What really passes me off about this type of development, is the lack of affordable quality housing, which could easily be accommodated.

      However, I know those in the fancy houses worry about their house value falling.

    273. Jack Murphy says:

      Arbroath1320 said last night at 5:35 pm:-
      “O/T here.
      Bella Caledonia interviews Alex Salmond.

      http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2016/03/17/bella-interviews-alex-salmond/

      Thanks very much for this link—I don’t often go to Bella Caledonia—Wings Over Scotland is my first port of call before going off to work.
      The Bella 29 minute FILM/INTERVIEW down in London is worth a re-post. 🙂

      Bella Caledonia:-“We kick-off the first of a series of interviews in the run-up to the Holyrood elections discussing Brexit, the indyref, the oil figures and the currency question with Alex Salmond.”

    274. Legerwood says:

      Dr Jim, @ 11.03

      Stirling Council’s objections were based on more, much more than 1000 objections.

      Not sure where you get the £37 million pounds from.

      Valerie @ 11.38

      I think you might be quite surprised about the extent to which the people in Dunblane object to the lack of affordable housing in the area. Children are basically educated for export since they are unlikely to be able to afford a house in the area. Developers see Dunblane as a cash cow where their houses can be sold at a premium way above what they could charge elsewhere.

    275. Valerie says:

      @Legerwood

      Completely agree,but forcing the developers hand is in the gift of the Council. You make it part of the mix and conditions.

      I know young people are forced out of the area, and that’s what pisses me off. A wasted opportunity where 19 high end units afforded only by the wealthy will come out of this devt.

      However, I suspect those with money can shout louder – it’s how they protect these expensive enclaves.

    276. Bill McLean says:

      Heedtracker – I simply disagree with you. There is no way that the stable the National is from would allow the sort of rabid criticism of the establishment that you appear to want. I agree with you in so far as if this was a normal country with real democracy and a healthy media it would be right for it to do as you wish – but, unfortunately this Britain/UK, whatever you want to call it, is no model of democracy nor even decency and the media is so controlled that the National, as a newspaper, is the best we’ll ever get. I want more. I want independence probably more urgently than you do as I’m past my allotted time! Cut it some slack please!

    277. Legerwood says:

      Valerie @ 1.18

      In this case it is the developers and the people fronting it who are shouting the loudest – access to an unquestioning media and access to the FM and through her to the SG.

      He reason for 19 houses is that it is below the threshold where the developers are obliged to provide affordable housing kicks in. The Council has pressed the developers and I think they have said they would make a payment of £245,000 or thereabouts – 2 houses maybe.

      The developers have submitted an appeal as people expected them to do but timed it just before the Anniversary of the Dunblane tragedy when people’s thoughts were naturally elsewhere. The developers had 3 months to prepare the appeal, the communities 2 weeks to prepare their submissions.

    278. ian says:

      Scottiedog,Thanks once again for your indepth explanation its no great surprise the majority of the population dont have a clue whats going on.So the real problem seems to lie with the ever increasing private debt level,stagnant wages and lack of growth in the economy.I think i’m going to need to do a bit of homework on the subject and i suppose i can now be described officially as an anarak.

    279. Hamish100 says:

      Fraser Nelson son of Andrew Neil- metaphorically speaking. Same bosses owning the same papers magazines and news media. Neil invites every week to the BBC press reviews his own prodigy. BBC and SKY likewise.

      Free press?

    280. Rock says:

      The National has several cheerleaders posting here.

      It might make you feel better, but The National is near zero help to the independence struggle.

      If it doesn’t want to be seen as a propaganda sheet, why use “independence support” to flog itself?

      Its only intention is to milk the market.

      Fortunately, the vast majority of those who voted Yes are not gullible like the 12,000 who buy The National are.

    281. Rock says:

      Ian Brotherhood,

      “@Rock (12.04) –

      Oh FFS, you’re back?”

      Ian Brotherhood,

      @Rock –

      I will welcome you, guarantee your safety, and ensure that you get the opportunity to address the gathering with your thoughts and concerns.”

      My thoughts and concerns posted here are attacked by you and some others in the same way as Scottish Labour attacks anything SNP.

    282. Foonurt says:

      Wull, yurr free tae stert yurr ane wan Rock. Um shair ye kid dae betturr thin yoan zero ‘The National’.Scoattish Independence, nivurr hid onnae press support tae ah 50 pence paper wis printit. Fifty fuckin pence, in noo sixty pence.

      Try sennin some stuff tae yoan ‘National’, if current stuff disnae cut it wae ye, insteed ah fuckin gurrnin aboot it.

    283. Rock says:

      Andrew Mclean,

      “I defended you rock not because you are correct, but because I think you’re correct to be cautious.
      And you might be more correct than you could possibly be aware.”

      We have been taken for fools for 300+ years.

      There are many among us who are either still being taken for fools, or are agents of the establishment pretending to be on our side.

      I am happy to be proved wrong if something turns out to be in our favour when I had thought otherwise.

    284. Foonurt says:

      Rock, ye soun lik ‘Loard Ah Yoan Fuckin Fleez’- agents ah the establishment, in taakin fur fuulls. Yull no git much din, lukin fur spooks roon ivrrae coarnurr.

      Furrget thae thochts, urr ye gah doon ah rid-den ah trusting naebdae. Wae awe ken, whaur thoan leads tae.

    285. Auld Rock says:

      Just catching-up. I can only say once again, OBR = Office of Bollocks and Rubbbish.

      Auld Rock

    286. neil allan says:

      At least the OBR’s figures aren’t as rubbish as the SNP’s White paper figures.



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