Why battles over NHS play differently on separate sides of the border 14 Jan 2015 at 6:11pm
THE cover of Lord Ashcroft's latest piece of polling research tells you almost as much as the next 48 pages, a clever set of four word clouds in Tory blue, Labour red, LibDem yellow and UKIP purple showing the terms focus groups employed most about these parties' attitude to the NHS.
JOHN Swinney will this week lower new tax rates on property purchases in a move that should spare middle-class house-buyers from being hit as hard as expected by a new levy on mid-market and up-market homes.
WE ARE on the cusp of a new era in Scottish politics. The major new tax and welfare powers coming to Scotland mean the Scottish Parliament is not just the centre of political activity in our country, but also increasingly responsible for the future of the nation’s public finances.
TAUROMACHIA is the answer. I tell you it is as clear as the nose on your face. Bull fighting. All we need to do is get the three establishment party leaders in the ring with party-coloured capes and japes to meet the rage of the bulls. Nigel can be the wild card as the expensively educated most establishment anti-establishment figure in history. Magical.
The price of truth by Rev. Stuart Campbell 18 Jan 2015 at 4:43am
…is eternal vigilance, chums. Turn your back on Unionists and the media – for the sake of argument we’ll say that’s two things – for a second and they’ll start trying to slip lies out into the public consciousness, from which place they’re notoriously hard to dislodge. (Kim Jong-Un’s mythical Scottish restaurant is a recent case […]
Keeping on keeping on by Rev. Stuart Campbell 17 Jan 2015 at 11:00am
Some readers have been a bit dispirited by the findings of our Panelbase poll this week, which revealed a few quite socially-conservative views among the Scottish population and also found fairly small differences of opinion between Scots and the rest of the UK on a number of issues. But to be downhearted about the findings is […]
Professional jealousy by Rev. Stuart Campbell 16 Jan 2015 at 4:32pm
Alert readers may recall this baffling story from last month, in which we discovered that Scottish Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie hadn’t been able to think of any more pressing issues to occupy himself with than finding out how many times Scottish Government civil servants had accessed Wings Over Scotland in the six months leading up […]
Dividing lines by Rev. Stuart Campbell 16 Jan 2015 at 10:00am
So far in our twin social-attitudes polls of Scotland and the rUK we’ve found that while there can be very sizeable gaps between Scottish public opinion and that elsewhere, it mostly tends to be within the same side of the debate – for example, rUK citizens are much keener on retaining the monarchy and nuclear […]
The same and different by Rev. Stuart Campbell 16 Jan 2015 at 7:04am
For our next grab-bag of data from our twin social-attitudes polls of Scotland and the rUK, let’s take a look at some things where Scottish people converge and diverge from their English, Welsh and Northern Irish counterparts. It’ll be something to do. ——————————————————————————————————– BRITAIN SHOULD KEEP THE MONARCHY Scotland Agree: 65% Disagree: 25% Net agreement: […]
The forgotten creed by Rev. Stuart Campbell 16 Jan 2015 at 1:00am
We apologise if the results of our twin social-attitudes polls of both Scotland and the rUK have been a little depressing so far, readers. Depending on how you choose to look at things (and where you live), this next tranche of data is going to either cheer you up a little bit or make you […]
Crimes and punishments by Rev. Stuart Campbell 15 Jan 2015 at 12:00pm
Having found to our dismay that both Scots and the rest of the UK want to see people prosecuted for offensive but non-threatening comments on Twitter and Facebook, it seems a good time to reveal the rest of our findings on matters of law and justice. We picked a random clutch of serious, not-so-serious, timeless and topical […]
We are not all Charlie by Rev. Stuart Campbell 15 Jan 2015 at 10:00am
Freedom of speech has been a very hot topic across the world in the wake of the brutal murder of 12 editorial staff at the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, and other related killings. So in our latest poll we thought we’d find out how committed people were to the principle, even in much less […]
A United Kingdom? by Rev. Stuart Campbell 15 Jan 2015 at 8:21am
Keen students of politics can’t have failed to notice a fascinating situation coalescing in the last few months. On current polling, it looks very much like no two of the UK’s four constituent nations will vote for the same party at the forthcoming general election. The Tories are miles ahead in England, in Scotland the […]
Referendum inspires young activists 15 Jan 2015 at 7:35pm
A quarter of 16 and 17-year-olds were inspired by the Scottish independence referendum to join a political party, according to a new survey.
Talks held over future of North Sea 16 Jan 2015 at 10:37am
Unions meet North Sea industry leaders to discuss the future of the oil and gas sector in the wake of recent jobs cuts.
Refugee crisis 'never more dire' 16 Jan 2015 at 4:12am
A conference is being held in Glasgow to look at what role Scotland can play in helping to tackle the global refugee crisis.
Final nuclear sub waste summit held 15 Jan 2015 at 7:51pm
A final consultation event is being held on proposals to use a former Scots nuclear plant to store radioactive waste from redundant submarines.
Top Scots civil servant to step down 15 Jan 2015 at 8:37am
Scotland's top civil servant, Sir Peter Housden, is leaving to make way for a successor ahead of the 2016 Scottish Parliament election.
Probe urged into housing contract 15 Jan 2015 at 3:45am
The Scottish Parliament is being urged to investigate a multi-million housing and repairs contract awarded to a firm which later went bust.
VIDEO: Scottish Parliament 15 Jan 2015 at 8:23am
Nicola Sturgeon is questioned on the problems facing the oil industry during fmqs.
Commentary: Blogger Russell Bruce responds to Her Majesty's Christmas broadcast...
Speeches are funny things and it is easy to get things wrong - just as I am not sure how to address you. I will be honest. I am a bit of a soft republican. So for me you are not the most important issue.
I hope that provides some little assurance, rather than offence of which none intended. Monarchy just seems out of place in the modern world, but then Scotland has been a monarchy in full and in part for 1,000 years. That sort of track record is good for tourism so probably explains a wee bit of my ambivalence on the subject.
The former diplomat Craig Murray has claimed the SNP is authoritarian after being rejected as a prospective candidate.
The Yes blogger, who was interviewed on Bateman Broadcasting two weeks ago, was rejected from the approved list of candidates after taking part in hustings for the Falkirk seat where he was seen as a frontrunner. He has been approached by other constituencies to stand for the SNP.
Oil is important to the global, UK and Scottish economies, driving the system, traded across the world and also a prime cause of climate change.
It should be no surprise therefore that prices and production are influenced by more than simple forces of supply and demand.
Not for the first time since 1970, the current manipulation of the world market is clearly evident with significant exploitation of shale deposits, the political consequences of the troubles in Ukraine and several other factors being identified as the causes of the recent falls in oil prices.
How The BBC Stole The Referendum is a book currently being written by GA Ponsonby, founder of Newsnet Scotland.
Ponsonby, a fierce and consistent critic of the BBC's role during the referendum campaign, has pulled together his critique of the corporation, and the influence he believes it had on the final vote. It is a view shared by many Yes campaigners.
Here Newsnet Scotland reproduces a late draft of the second chapter [Click here to read chapter 1]. Its author is raising funds to publish the book by April 2015: in time of the UK general election, where the BBC's coverage will be under intense scrutiny once again. Details are at the bottom of the page.
Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy's conversion to consensus politics appears to be stuck in first gear after just a week in charge.
The performance of his deputy, Kezia Dugdale MSP, in trying to pin responsiblity for the woes of the oil sector on the SNP at First Minister's Questions last week, suggested that Labour cannot shake itself out of the position of "opposition for opposition's sake" at Holyrood.
The row over the highly-charged role of the Treasury's specially created referendum unit - first revealed by Newsnet Scotland - has deepened following the revelation that the chairman of a House of Commons Select Committee may probe comments attributed to a leading team member.
Mario Pisani was quoted by the leading trade journal Civil Service World as welcoming his team's involvement in a political campaign, namely the independence referendum.
The deputy director of the Treasury, and a former speech writer to ex-Chancellor and Better Together campaign figurehead Alistair Darling MP, Pisani made several controversial remarks at a ceremony where he and the rest of the department's "Scotland Analysis Programme Team" received the Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service Award in the annual Civil Service Awards.
BBC Radio Scotland has revealed a significant programming reshuffle, supposedly in response to the independence referendum, during which its news and current affairs department faced severe criticism.
Radio Scotland head Jeff Zycinski has unveiled a three-hour daily morning show, to be presented by broadcasting stalwart Kaye Adams four days a week with the fifth day to be chaired by ex rugby player John Beattie.
To be launched in March, The new Adams show will supposedly have a strong "news and current affairs" angle, including phone-ins, debates and interviews. It is not known which BBC department will produce the programme.
Crunch European Union fishing talks ended in Brussels last night with a couple of key wins for the Scottish lobby which had pressed for measures to take some pressure off the industry.
Scottish Fishing Secretary Richard Lochhead MSP said the outcome would bring relief as the industry prepares to cope with the implications of ongoing measures to cut "discards", the controversial practice of returning the "wrong" catch dead into the sea.
The civil service team behind the UK government's anti-Yes campaign in the Scottish referendum have been patted on the back for a splendid job by their peers.
The Treasury's "Scotland Analysis Programme Team" - little known during the referendum campaign - has been given the Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service Award in the annual Civil Service Awards.
According to a glowing review in the magazine, Civil Service World, the senior team "was tasked with producing analysis in the lead-up to the Scottish referendum of how both, Scotland and the rest of the UK, benefit from being part of one country".
A rash prediction by James 30 Dec 2014 at 7:12am
There aren’t many certainties around the UK General Election due in May, so everyone says. As the proportion of voters backing Labour or the Tories, even under First Past The Post, dwindles, the ma...
The Smith Revolution by Guest Blog 8 Dec 2014 at 7:48am
Another guest post from our pal Duncan Thorp on the Smith Commission report. Thanks Duncan! Lenin, Guevara, Khomeini, Robespierre, Smith. Well not quite, but change of some kind is coming, it trans...
The Black Dog on My Shoulder by Malc 7 Dec 2014 at 8:44am
A fair few people found Malc‘s last blogpost about depression pretty helpful. Here’s a wee followup. Thanks Malc! Five weeks ago I decided to write about my battle with depression in this article. ...
Sweden?s far right a glimpse of UKIP?s potential by Dom 3 Dec 2014 at 12:44am
At half past four yesterday afternoon Mattias Karlsson, the temporary leader of Sweden’s far right Sweden Democrats, caused a political shockwave as he revealed to the press that he and his colleag...
Labour?s Green hunt has been done before, and failed. by Dom 18 Nov 2014 at 12:16pm
The most read article in the sidebar of the Swedish socialist newspaper Flamman is ?Are the Greens a bourgeois party?. The short answer is no, but the eagerness with which Sweden?s socialists are a...
November Holyrood voting intention by James 18 Nov 2014 at 4:03am
The Daily Record‘s latest poll with Survation has Holyrood numbers which, shall we say, may add to the anxiety in Labour that they still haven’t hit bottom yet. Presumably a new leader will hope fo...
Questions for the SNP depute leadership candidates by James 11 Nov 2014 at 7:34am
The SNP may know who their next leader will be, but the polls are open until Wednesday night for the depute role, and there are three contenders. I thought I’d ask them all three awkward questions,...
Faraway, so close! by Dom 8 Nov 2014 at 4:58pm
25 years ago the Berlin Wall came down. The most physical symbol of the division between East and West was pulled apart by the people that feared it. The spectre of a border dividing what was suppo...
Whoops there go my neurones by weegingerdug 16 Jan 2015 at 8:19pm
I went to visit a friend last night, who insisted that she had to watch her favourite telly show – Celebrity Big Brother. Katie Hopkins is in it, taking refuge from that part of the Scottish popula...
Vote Dug by weegingerdug 12 Jan 2015 at 8:39pm
Voting is now open in Bella Caledonia’s indyref awards, because we didn’t win the actual indyref, they thought it would be a good idea to cheer us up with an awards ceremony. Thankfully this hasn’t...
Mortuary SLAB by weegingerdug 11 Jan 2015 at 11:01am
I’ve given up – my plans to write about something other than the flustercluck which passes for the Smugurph’s leadership of the Labour party in Scotland have foundered upon the McTernan Rocks, a di...
Skanktimonious sock puppets and the Smugurph bounce by weegingerdug 4 Jan 2015 at 4:30pm
It’s not easy being Saint Dougie the Diminutive, all those party colleagues and Guardian writers looking at you expecting a miracle, and all you’ve got is a box of party tricks that are as transpar...
Giving up bad habits by weegingerdug 26 Dec 2014 at 1:03pm
This article first appeared in the first edition of iScot – Scotland’s new news, politics and features magazine. If you’ve not subscribed yet, do so now! I’ll be writing for them regularly – beca...
Mr Hi Jumpy and the high jump by weegingerdug 22 Dec 2014 at 8:02pm
Jim Murphy has been raising the profile of the Labour party this week, at least according to an interview in the Guardian, a newspaper which sells only a handful of copies in Scotland, most of whic...
Thinking very carefully by weegingerdug 17 Dec 2014 at 9:50pm
I’m plastered in potions and lotions in an attempt to get my psoriasis under control, but I’m not sure which is scabbier, psoriasis or the union. Psoriasis is a chronic condition, but there’s a cur...
Alicsammin?s part in Alan Cochrane?s downfall by weegingerdug 6 Dec 2014 at 9:01pm
How many Alan Cochranes does it take to screw in a lightbulb? He doesn’t have to, he just holds up the bulb and the world revolves around him. Alan has a very high conceit of himself, and indeed ...
Wullie Rennie?s letter to Santa by weegingerdug 4 Dec 2014 at 12:15pm
Just three months after the referendum, and for much of the Scottish political class and their media hingers oan it’s back to business as usual. This consists of finding things to accuse the SNP of...