Chap-Chap.com
Scottish Politics and Referendum News - aggregated

About and Contact | Archive

The Herald

Scottish Political News | Herald Scotland
Scottish Political News | Herald Scotland

EU referendum threat to Cameron leadership
DAVID Cameron must promise an "in-out" referendum on Britain's European Union membership or face defections to the anti-EU UKIP and a challenge to his Conservative leadership, senior party sources have warned.

Cuts blamed for hospital errors
OPPOSITION MSPs have blamed a rise in serious accidents, errors and other incidents in hospitals on cuts to nursing staff on the wards.

Clegg warns Coalition will stick to economic course
THE Liberal Democrats will continue to "anchor this Coalition in the centre ground" of British politics, Nick Clegg will declare today.

Funds cut for carbon scheme
THE UK Government has been accused of slashing funding for carbon capture technology considered vital for turning oil and gas into green energy sources.

Eight out of ten inmates illiterate
EIGHT out of ten inmates in Scotland's prisons are functionally illiterate.

Call for money to help cut smoking
CASH recovered from a legal battle over cigarette displays in shops should be spent tackling smoking among young people, an MSP has urged.

PM boost for stance on gay marriage
DAVID Cameron's endorsement of gay marriage has seen support for the Conservatives among homosexual people almost triple, a new poll has found.

Osborne's 'austerity' under fire over high salaries
CHANCELLOR George Osborne, the architect of the Government's austerity strategy, has come under fire for not practising at the Treasury what he is preaching to others after it emerged the number of his departmental staff on six-figure salaries has doubled in less than three years, according to official figures.

Senior Tory says Mitchell has not emerged 'smelling of roses'
CONSERVATIVES should not instigate a witch-hunt against the police in the wake of the Plebgate row, a senior Tory has warned.

Labour: Coalition's tax cheat priorities all wrong
More officials are being used to implement child benefit cuts than chase down wealthy tax cheats, Labour said ahead of the introduction of the change.

Cameron and Salmond praise Forces
DAVID Cameron and Alex Salmond have used their Christmas messages to praise the work of the armed forces and emergency services.

Tory anger at inmates' TV viewing
Thousands of prisoners accessing paid-for television programmes in jail is "galling", according to the Scottish Conservatives.

SNP accuses Lamont of U-turn on university tuition fees
THE SNP last night demanded Labour leader Johann Lamont apologise for her party's apparent U-turn on student tuition fees.

It's caves or wind farms, warns MSP
AN MSP has angered an anti-wind farm protester by declaring that if Scots do not embrace the technology they will end up up living in caves.

Holyrood closes loophole on publicising corrections
HOLYROOD has closed a loophole that allowed MSPs to alter the official record of parliamentary proceedings without having to publicise their corrections.

 

Scotsman

Scotsman.com - Politics Feed

Cartoons of the week: 22 - 28 December

A look at the past week in politics, in cartoons.



Capital and Lothians win biggest share to renovate empty houses which are ?bl...

EDINBURGH and the Lothians are the largest recipients in Scotland of extra funding to bring empty homes back into use for homeless families.



Margaret Thatcher feared World Cup Argentina clash

MARGARET Thatcher’s government feared a football clash between one of the UK teams and Argentina in the 1982 World Cup at the height of the Falklands War – but were assured by a Scottish Office minister there was little chance of Scotland making it into the crucial second round.



Kezia Dugdale MSP calls for web use approval to lift parliament debates

HOLYROOD politicians should be allowed to log on to the internet during debates in the Scottish Parliament chamber, an MSP said today.



Anger as big firms pay less tax ? and small ones have to fork out more

BIG companies in the UK are paying less tax than they did 12 years ago, despite a big jump in profits, while smaller firms have seen their tax bill almost treble.



Files reveal Thatcher vetoed late Reagan bid to halt Falklands War

UNITED States president Ronald Reagan issued a last-ditch appeal to Margaret Thatcher to abandon her campaign to retake the Falklands and hand over the islands to international peacekeepers, according to official documents made public today.



Scottish independence: Business challenge to SNP on independence

THE Scottish Government has been urged to bring forward the publication of its independence White Paper to give businesses “greater clarity and certainty” about the impact of Scotland leaving the UK.



Too many contracts going to Irish firms, claims business chief

SCOTLAND’S economy is suffering as a result of major construction contracts being awarded to firms across the Irish Sea, a business leader has claimed.



Lib Dems fear policy on migrants will damage UK

A POLL of MPs today revealed deep concern among Liberal Democrats about the damage the government’s immigration policies could do to the British economy.



Over 95 per cent of government buildings fail green test

THE SNP’s green energy stance has been labelled “embarrassing” after it emerged that less than 5 per cent of government buildings use specialist equipment to produce electricity and heat from renewable sources.



Joyce McMillan: Inequality is now our biggest threat

STEPS must be taken to address injustice if we are to avoid social collapse and destruction, writes Joyce McMillan



Tom Peterkin: Expect another year of flag-waving and constitutional wrangling

LOOKING towards the new year, it is difficult to see how 2013 will avoid feelings of anticlimax following the remarkable events of 2012.



George Kerevan: Politics first; rebuilding the nation comes next

DAVID Watt should realise that recreating Scotland’s innovative energy needs us to seize control of the levers first, writes George Kerevan



Tories bid to attract more black voters

The Conservative Party has insisted that its election candidates are selected on merit, after reports that David Cameron has ordered a drive to increase the numbers of black and Asian people standing to become Tory MPs.



Cut down helpings of crash diets advice - Jo Swinson

CONSUMER minister Jo Swinson has written to magazine editors urging them not to promote “miracle diets” in their first editions of the new year.



Wingsland Blog

Wings Over Scotland
the stories in Scotland's newspapers tomorrow, today

Dear Scotsman journalists
Here’s a friendly tip – this is why people think you’re all biased Unionist stooges: The sort of corporate tax avoidance perpetrated by companies like Vodafone, Amazon, eBay and Starbucks is indeed a scandal. It is, however, a scandal that resides entirely at Westminster. The Scottish Government has no control whatsoever over corporate tax policy, [...]

2012: Death Of The Year
Now don’t panic, readers. We wouldn’t, of course, be so crass and tasteless as to celebrate the death of an individual human being. (Though it’s hard to sensibly dispute that a great dark psychological weight will be lifted from the Scottish psyche whenever Lady Thatcher finally gasps her last.) Instead, for the latest of our [...]

2012: Will we die after independence?
One of our very favourite No-campaign scare stories of the year was the Huffington Post’s “Vote Yes And You’ll Die Of Cancer”. But if Scotland chooses independence in 2014, will it actually affect our healthcare? After all, we’ve already noted how NHS Scotland has been independent since inception (and why we need a Yes vote [...]

2012: Paid Troll of The Year
With very few exceptions (notably the Guardian), it’s almost unheard of for senior media commentators to ever participate in below-the-line (BTL) discussion on their own articles. Less frequent still is for articles to be amended with provocative challenges expressly soliciting abusive comments from readers. (“PS This article has been up for five whole minutes, without [...]

2012: Socialist Unity Of The Year
In a year characterised by a marked increase in heat, as the Holyrood opposition focused its efforts almost exclusively on personal attacks against SNP ministers in an attempt to decapitate the Yes campaign, very few things could be said to have united a wide spectrum of the political sphere, from the radical arch-left to soft [...]

2012: Jumping the gun
We had a brief and dispiriting Twitter exchange back in May with a prominent Scottish Green activist (if there can strictly be said to be such a thing), in the shape of the party’s former head of media James Mackenzie. The discussion was sparked by a piece in the Guardian reporting the Green quasi-leader Patrick [...]

2012: Moderator Of The Year
Disappointingly, since we examined the state of censorship in Scottish political blogs back in April, the situation has only got worse. Even those sites which previously sat atop the table for freedom of debate have gone backwards – Bella Caledonia now snootily demands a WordPress login before it’ll deign to allow you to comment without [...]

Press pause on the remote
Merry Christmas, readers. We hope you have one filled with peace and love. There are still at least two-and-a-half years of Tory-led Westminster government to come. If you need the words, they’re below. . It’s Christmas so we’ll stop It’s on with the lights to warm the dark it can cloak elsewhere as the rot [...]

If you?re away from the zeitgeist
Fewer than one in ten of our readers follow us on Twitter, which is a bit annoying as it’s a great way of passing on interesting stuff quickly without having to put together a whole post on it. (We don’t really understand people’s objections to using Twitter. Some say it’s full of daft trivia about [...]

2012: Sinister positionings
Last week, unnoticed by the media, the “Better Together” website issued a rather disturbing “Activist Briefing”. It was based around what’s been a core facet of the anti-independence campaign for years – the notion that even with oil revenues, Scotland is too poor to go it alone. (Despite regular assurances to the contrary in more [...]

BBC Scotland

BBC News - Scotland politics
The latest stories from the Scotland politics section of the BBC News web site.

Inmates 'have poor reading skills'
About 80% of prisoners in Scotland are functionally illiterate, according to figures released under a freedom of information request.

Call to bring forward white paper
The Scottish government is urged by a business organisation to bring forward the publication of its independence white paper.

Health ministers lobbied on booze
Scotland's health secretary urges European Union health ministers to back the country's plans to bring in a minimum price for alcohol.

Medicine waste 'costs £500,000'
The Liberal Democrats hit out at the £500,000 a year cost to the NHS in Scotland for collecting and destroying unused prescriptions.

Councils paid £33m in compensation
Scottish councils paid out more than £33m for compensation claims over the last five years, according to figures released after a Freedom of Information request.

Flooding funds system opened up
Emergency funds are being opened up to areas in the north east of Scotland hit by flooding and severe weather.

Tooth decay of P1s at record low
A record number of primary one pupils in Scotland have no signs of tooth decay, a national dental inspection programme reveals.

VIDEO: Scottish Parliament
Alex Salmond insists free higher education will be part of the Scottish tradition "not just for Christmas but for all time" in the last first minister's questions of the year.

VIDEO: Economy shows 'glimmer of hope'
The Scottish Government's 'biggest fall in unemployment in four years' but are the latest employment figures a glimmer of hope for the economy.

AUDIO: Icelandic view on Scottish referendum
The president of Iceland gives a a qualified welcome to the prospect of Scotland becoming independent after the 2014 referendum.

VIDEO: Keeping the lights on after 2014
The UK government and SNP ministers are disagreeing over the cost of electricity bills should Scotland become independent.

A year in the Scottish Parliament
The BBC's Craig Hutchison looks back at the highs and lows in the Scottish Parliament in 2012

Join Brian Taylor's Big Debate audience
Join the audience for Brian Taylor's Big Debate each Friday

Newsnet Scotland

News Scotland | News - Scottish, Politics, Economy and Culture
Scottish News, News Scotland - Politics, Economy, Culture and intelligent opinion | Newsnet Scotland, uniquely Scottish

Scotland and the European Union

By Sir David Edward

In this post I have tried to set out my analysis of the position in European Union law if there is a vote in favour of Scottish independence in the 2014 referendum.  I have been greatly helped by the comments of colleagues and friends, but the views expressed are my own.

The first part of the paper sets out what I believe to be the most relevant texts.  I then set out my analysis of the problem.



Does Scotland really want to do something about inequality?

By Gerry Hassan, The Scotsman, December 22nd 2012

Scotland thinks and acts left.

The complexity of evidence on values and policies shows that Scotland isn?t that much different from the rest of the UK. But the dominant account of Scotland is centre-left, or even left, in how it sees and positions itself, and how it votes.

Such a political culture not surprisingly spends a large amount of time articulating its concerns on social justice. We see ourselves as more egalitarian and less hierarchical than our Southern neighbours and maybe even more Nordic and Scandinavian, certainly more social democratic.



Modern haruspicy - the latest Ashcroft poll

By Dave Taylor

When Agricola decided to mount his invasion by land and sea to curb the wild Caledonians, he would have asked the priests to sacrifice a sheep, then examine its liver (haruspicy) to decide whether the gods were on his side ? if specific parts of the liver were diseased or malformed, one or more of the gods were disapproving.

Today, political parties and associated geeks do something very similar.  They examine the responses of members of the diseased body politic for prophetic signs.  The priests are the opinion pollsters.



Imagining Radical Scottish Independence: Learning from the Venezuelan Experience

By Ewan Robertson

With two years to go until the Scottish National Party (SNP) puts an independence referendum to the Scottish people, the likelihood appears that the form of ?independence? on offer will look more like ?devolution-max?: ditching any policy that would either prove unacceptable to ruling elites across the UK and further afield, or would bring meaningful sovereignty and political participation to an independent Scotland.



First Minister's Christmas message

First Minister Alex Salmond has used his Christmas message to highlight the values held by David Livingstone, as people around the world prepare to celebrate the bicentenary of the explorer and humanitarian?s birth in March next year. 

Speaking at the Livingstone exhibition at the National Museum of Scotland, the First Minister said it was important at this time of year to care about those who may be facing hardship, loneliness or illness ? much as Livingstone had done throughout his extraordinary career.



We will all benefit from a genuine debate

  By Lesley Riddoch
 
Two years ahead of the biggest political event in 21st century Britain, the Scottish press should be having a ball.  Since David Cameron announced ?game on? in January, there?ve been headlines, scoops, news stories and meaty issues aplenty.

Sure advertising has crashed.  Certainly a near triple-dip recession hasn't helped.  Admittedly the remorseless growth of a Google News generation is scary.  Thank God then for the independence referendum.



Education, Education, Education

By Allan Grogan

?She wins nothing but praise from Conservative MSPs and commentators, including David Cameron who echoed her words at PMQs yesterday.?

This is not, as you would probably imagine, a progress report on Theresa May?s performance as Home Secretary, rather Iain MacWhirter?s comments on the Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont.



The UK?s economic engine is running on empty

By George Kerevan
 
DESPITE acres of newsprint and millions of words of analysis being expended in pursuit of an answer, it is easy to sum up the ailment from which the UK economy is suffering: there is nothing to drive growth.
 
Put another way, there is no petrol in the economic engine.
 
Yesterday?s [Thursday] batch of year-end data confirmed the worst. The Office for National Statistics revised third-quarter growth downwards from 1 per cent to 0.9 per cent, puncturing the dream that this summer?s Olympics bounce



Prepare for incoming mortar shills targeting independence

By Mark McNaught

The Herald and the Scotsman have just simultaneously published their ?findings? of a report issued by the Centre for Public Policy for Regions, which the Herald claims demonstrates that ?FALLING oil revenues will leave Scotland worse off than the rest of the UK by the time voters go to the polls in the independence referendum, a report warns today?.

Citing the same report, The Scotsman ominously states that ?AN INDEPENDENT Scotland would be worse off financially than the remainder of the UK as projections for oil and gas revenues plummet, a leading think tank has warned?.



Catalonia: The moment we've been waiting centuries for

By Vicent Partal

The massive demonstration on September 11th has had direct and concrete results three months and one week later. The agreement signed between CiU and ERC means that the cry of the people on the streets that day in Barcelona has now been transformed into ACTION, with a capital A.

And thanks to the agreement, the citizens of the Principality of Catalonia will vote on independence in 2014, if nothing goes awry. It is, therefore, a historic accord that was difficult to construct and that will probably also be difficult to hold together. But I insist that above all other considerations, it is a historic accord: this agreement marks the end of the autonomous government and the immediate beginning of the possibility of becoming an independent Republic. Which is nothing to sneeze at.



Referendum 2014 (Scoop.it)

Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
All the new curated posts for the topic: Referendum 2014

Wings Over Scotland | Dear Scotsman journalists

Here’s a friendly tip – this is why people think you’re all biased Unionist stooges...



See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Half the number of Basques favour independence referendum

Half the population of the Basque Country favours a referendum on whether the region should secede from Spain, compared to 38 percent who are against...

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Wings Over Scotland | 2012: Death Of The Year

Now don’t panic, readers. We wouldn’t, of course, be so crass and tasteless as to celebrate the death of an individual human being, though it’s hard to dispute that a great dark psychological weight will be lifted from the Scottish psyche whenever Lady Thatcher finally gasps her last. Instead, for the latest of our “Wingy” end-of-year awards we’ll be marking the passing of something that started the year full of health and vigour and promise, but has ended it as a tragic corpse, lying unnoticed by the neighbours for months until the smell became too much to ignore.



See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

A year when Alex became the weakest link
The past 12 months saw the First Minister lose much of his lustre after a series of blunders that sprung from his failure to tackle the tough questions
Peter A Bell's insight:
One thing you have to give Poor Old Cockers credit for is the dumb tenacity with which he clings to the petty Salmond-bashing myths he plays a minor (and diminishing) role in promulgating, no matter how inane they may be or to what extent the myth diverges from objective reality.We read his column these days, not to find out what is going on in Scottish politics, but for an update on the hate-fuelled fantasies, deranged delusions and woolly-minded wishful thinking of the loony fringe of British nationalism.My fervent hope for 2013 is that Cochrane and all his ilk will disregard my previous pleas that they seek counselling and instead continue to serve the cause of Scottish independence as effectively as they have done throughout 2012.

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

This Land is our Land

Right over the holidays Bella will be publishing a series of review of 2012 and previews of the year ahead. Collectively, these are Bella’s Big Review #bellasbigreview. To kick start [...]

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Business challenge to SNP on independence

THE Scottish Government has been urged to bring forward the publication of its independence White Paper to give businesses “greater clarity and certainty” about the impact of Scotland leaving the UK.
Peter A Bell's insight:
Iain McMillan does not speak for Scotland nor even for Scottish business. He speaks for a small clique with a vested interest in the preservation of the British state and Scotland's subordinate status within it. For this reason he will always emulate the British parties at Holyrood in opposing whatever the Scottish government does regardless of the interests of the people of Scotland.If the SNP administration was planning to release the white paper tomorrow then McMillan would be complaining about them "rushing things", and trying to curtail debate. Nothing this man says can be taken seriously.

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Wings Over Scotland | 2012: Paid Troll of The Year

With very few exceptions (notably the Guardian), it’s almost unheard of for senior media commentators to participate in below-the-line (BTL) discussion on their own articles. Less frequent still is for articles to be amended with provocative challenges expressly soliciting abusive comments from readers.  (“PS This article has been up for five whole minutes, without me being denounced by Cybernats. Where are you all?”)

Yet such was the extraordinary spectacle that was served up to startled readers of the Spectator (annual subscription: £111) back in October of this year.


Peter A Bell's insight:
Illustrating the intellectual deficit of British nationalism.

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Alex Salmond 'secrecy' over independence civil servants

Alex Salmond has faced accusations of overseeing a "culture of secrecy" after claiming he holds no record of how many civil servants he has assigned to work on his blueprint for an independent Scotland.
Peter A Bell's insight:
Are Willie Rennie and Jackson Carlaw any more than a dial-a-quote service for the British nationalist press?

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Michael Kelly: Bad year for SNP?s independence hopes

FATAL errors made by Alex Salmond this year have ruined his chances of a 2014 referendum victory, writes Michael Kelly

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Wings Over Scotland | 2012: Jumping the gun

We had a brief and dispiriting Twitter exchange back in May with a prominent Scottish Green activist (if there can strictly be said to be such a thing), in the shape of the party’s former head of media James Mackenzie. The discussion was sparked by a piece in the Guardian reporting the Green leader (sorry, “co-convenor”) Patrick Harvie’s dire warning to Alex Salmond against a “bland, middle-of-the-road” prospectus for independence, which he suggested would risk “alienating” the left-leaning section of the Scottish public (ie most of it) and thereby losing the referendum.



See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Scotland ?would face legal woes? over plan to keep the pound

Plans by the Scottish Government to keep the pound if Scotland wins independence have come under fire from financial lawyers.
Peter A Bell's insight:
Bog-standard re-hashed British nationalist scaremongering. I wouldn't be at all surprised to discover that The Scotsman has acquired computer software to churn out this junk.

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Wessex Regionalists: English Is Not Enough

“What we think of when we talk of English traits really narrows itself to a small district. It excludes Ireland and Scotland and Wales, and reduces itself at last to London, that is, to those who come and go thither.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)


Peter A Bell's insight:
It is not only in Scotland that the British state is being challenged.

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Scottish independence: Government's achievements the case for independence

Scotsman
Scottish independence: Government's achievements the case for independence ...

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Britain urged to abandon EU referendum

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble has urged the British government to avoid an in-out referendum on EU.
Peter A Bell's insight:
Unionists hoist with own petard!

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Referendum Puts Decency at Centre of Ballot

Decision to remain in UK would be alien to Scotland's social democratic values, says James Kelly.

See it on Scoop.it, via Referendum 2014

Daily Record

dailyrecord - Politics
RSS feed from Daily Record

Scottish Government urge European health ministers to back minimum alcohol pr...
HEALTH SECRETARY Alex Neil is trying to persuade European Union trade ministers to support the Scottish Government's minimum price per unit of alcohol proposal.

Revealed: Margaret Thatcher considered ordering Scotland to pull out of 1982 ...
THE Iron Lady was warned by inner circle Scots that she would become even more unpopular north of the border if she ordered the national side to give up their chance of glory in Spain.

Treasury could save £2bn a year if 'living wage' of £7.45 was introduced for ...
TWO think-tanks called on all Government departments to introduce a "living wage" rate which would give the country's lowest earners an extra £6.5billion.

European health ministers urged to back Scotland's proposed minimum pricing f...
ALEX NEIL insists health ministers in the European Union view the plans differently to the trade ministers and has called for them to back his call.

Empty hearts rule coalition
BENEFIT claimants will be hit by another 'tax' after the Government revealed it will payments from those who require someone to stay in a spare room.

Tory 'bedroom tax' penalises poor by £600, says Scottish Housing Minister
MARGARET BURGESS says more than 100,000 Scots households could be worse off under plans which would see tenants have their benefits cut if they have a spare room in their house.

£500,000 bill to pick-up unused prescriptions and destroy them
THE Scottish Government say more needs to be done to make sure patients understand how and when to take their prescriptions instead of wasting their medicine supply.

Council's £33million compensation claims over 5 years include damage to garde...
THE sum spent on compensation claims between 2007-08 and 2011-12 was £33,207,000 ? although the Tories claim it could be higher as seven of Scotland?s 32 councils did not respond.

Scottish independence: UK financial regulators could raise difficult question...
THERE is no law to support the Scottish Government's promise that an independent Scotland would automatically remain a member of the EU on the UK's existing terms.

Civil servants visit Facebook almost 2.5million times in six months
THE figures show internet activity at the Department for Communities and Local Government, run by Tory minister Eric Pickles.

Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont admits next year will be tough as she pl...
LAMONT insists her main aim is to ensure families, young people and the vulnerable are protected at a time when the Scottish economy shows no sign of improving.

Union warns public sector staff they face being frozen out of pay rises for 1...
MANY Unison members will reportedly be working over the Christmas holidays despite having had no pay rise for three years.

Justice must be for everyone.. or for nobody
THE recent demand for longer sentences and heavier clampdowns by ministers chasing headlines could alter our faith in the criminal justice system.

Former Prime Minister's wife Sarah Brown hails flat Coca-Cola as miracle Noro...
WHILE hundreds have backed the flat coke theory, medical experts say there is no miracle cure to banish the winter vomiting bug.

Justice Minister, Lord Advocate & Scotland's top police chief accused of ridi...
LEADING lawyers have warned proposed changes such as scrapping corroboration rules and allowing suspects to be put on trial twice for the same crime are ­dangerous and misguided.

Guardian - Scottish Politics

Politics: Scottish politics | guardian.co.uk
Articles published by guardian.co.uk Politics about: Scottish politics

Salmond sets up Leveson panel as Scotland prepares to go it alone

A five-person panel of legal experts and journalists has been appointed by the Scottish government to consider how to implement the Leveson report.

They are to spend three months considering how sta...



Scotland to ban cigarette displays in shops after court challenge fails

Ban on open displays of tobacco products likely to come into effect in April after supreme court throws out firm's case

Shops in Scotland will be banned from openly displaying cigarettes after a leg...



Scottish minister to make emergency statement on EU membership rights

Move comes after president of European commission says independent Scotland will not inherit UK's EU opt-outs

The Scottish deputy first minister has accepted opposition demands for an emergency stat...



Scotland calls for urgent talks over EU membership

Scottish government rejects commission chief's assertion that independent state would have to reapply to join European Union

The Scottish government is pressing for urgent talks with the European co...



As Scotland enters the EU, the rest of the UK exits? | Iain Macwhirter

An independent Scotland may not be an automatic EU member, but fundamentally there's no bar. Meanwhile, down south ?

The argument about an independent Scotland's relationship with the EU might seem ...



Leveson criticises Salmond for offering to lobby on behalf of Murdoch

Judge says Scottish first minister was willing to break ministerial code, but clears him of specific wrongdoing

Lord Justice Leveson has criticised Alex Salmond for being willing to breach the Scott...



Boundary changes for devo max: the Tory-SNP deal that may reshape the UK | Ma...

An agreement with the Scottish Nationalists could keep the Tories in power ? and settle the West Lothian question

For all of the miscalculations and cock-ups of the past two-and-a-half years, the To...



Election watchdog begins 12-week review of Scottish referendum question

Electoral Commission will assess proposed question on Scottish independence for bias, clarity and simplicity

The Electoral Commission has begun scrutinising the Scottish government's question for th...



Scottish lawyers and hospital doctors threaten to strike

Scottish government faces industrial action in spate of disputes over cuts in legal aid funding and pension reforms

Alex Salmond is facing a series of strikes by lawyers and hospital doctors in disp...



Johann Lamont: Facing up to Scotland's 'stark choice'

Scotland's Labour leader wants free healthcare, not the independence debate, to dominate the political agenda

When Johann Lamont, Scotland's Labour leader, called for a mature debate on the funding ...



Stonewall unapologetic over Scottish cardinal's 'bigot of the year' award

Gay rights group says it will retain category in next year's awards, after criticism from politicians and Catholic church

The gay rights group Stonewall has refused to back down after it provoked a ...



Westminster rejects Alex Salmond claim on Scotland's EU membership

UK government issues statement fuelling row over an independent Scotland's status in the European Union

The UK government says an independent Scotland would have to apply as a new member state to jo...



Nick Clegg attacks Philip Hammond for 'jumping the gun' on Trident

Deputy PM shows anger at defence secretary's plans for deterrent renewal without coalition-agreed study of alternatives

Nick Clegg has accused the defence secretary, Philip Hammond, of "jumping the ...



Donald Trump is a joke, but not a harmless one | Anthony Baxter

As I learned while making my film, You've Been Trumped, the billionaire uses his celebrity and wealth to get his own way

There was something bizarre, sad and deeply unsettling about Donald Trump's m...



Scottish independence could threaten Trident, MPs warn

Report suggests Westminster government could be forced to disarm and find new home for Clyde-based nuclear weapons

A vote for Scottish independence could force the UK to "unilaterally disarm" its Tr...



Bella Caledonia


GET ABOVE OURSELVES

This Land is our Land
Right over the holidays Bella will be publishing a series of review of 2012 and previews of the year ahead. Collectively, these are Bella’s Big Review #bellasbigreview. To kick start [...]

Reasons to be Cheerful
As it’s announced that ‘Director of Creative Development’ Venu Dhupa is ‘standing down’, Ruth Wishart looks at the future. If you had a taste for masochism there could have been [...]

What connects Alasdair Gray, Dirty Dancing and Gary Tank Commander?
But the question still remains. Do Scots run Scotland? It?s a subjective argument and a cultural one. That doesn't make it any less important or real. Just much, much more sensitive.

Spreading a despicable anti-English meme: The dirty war continues?
by Kevin Williamson Noam Chomsky wrote extensively and perceptively about the “manufacture of consent”.  It’s a process whereby an idea which can have little basis in reality, is not subjected [......

Unanswered questions have been raised about Scotland?s cultural institutions
by Kevin Williamson Scotland has a long and justifiably proud history of cultural exchange with creative artists from every corner of the globe.  Film festivals, writers festivals, music festivals ...

WHY ALASDAIR GRAY MATTERS (AND WHY HE MUST BE SMEARED)
by Kevin Williamson and Mike Small When the Tory government were re-elected for a fourth term in 1992 Scotland was plunged into a constitutional crisis. An unelected unwanted government with [...]

The Right to Health
By Michael Roy Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948 states that “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health, and wellbeing [...]

Forms of Protest 4
Continuing our series on forms of protest, this from Chile …     Filed under: Forms of Protest

Can We Reinvent Ourselves?
By Chris Thomson As the possibility of independence draws nearer, some of us are wondering whether this will be the moment when Scotland re-invents herself. The precedents for this are [...]

Patsy versus Ryan
Sometimes you’ve got to hand it to the No people. Despite getting a bad press for relentlessly flooding their media with scare stories (today we hear the price of energy [...]

Scotland and Independence

scotland independence - Google News
Google News

Scotland should thank the English settlers - The Guardian

The Guardian

Scotland should thank the English settlers
The Guardian
Gray's work is included in an anthology published by Word Power Books nine days ago entitled Unstated: Writers on Scottish Independ...


Scottish independence: CBI Scotland urges ministers to bring forward white pa...

BBC News

Scottish independence: CBI Scotland urges ministers to bring forward white paper
BBC News
A leading business organisation has urged the Scottish government to bring forward the publication of...


Scottish independence: Business challenge to SNP on independence - Scotsman

Scotsman

Scottish independence: Business challenge to SNP on independence
Scotsman
THE Scottish Government has been urged to bring forward the publication of its independence White Paper to give busin...


Scottish independence: Put off debate until 2014, urges business leader - Sco...

Scotsman

Scottish independence: Put off debate until 2014, urges business leader
Scotsman
Published on Thursday 27 December 2012 00:12. SCOTLAND'S independence debate should be shelved until 2014 to a...


Clydeside shipyards could be saved by BAE plan - Herald Scotland

Clydeside shipyards could be saved by BAE plan
Herald Scotland
However, The Herald has been told the Ministry of Defence has asked BAE not to close the Ports-mouth yard completely, but to mothball th...


Scottish independence: UK financial regulators could raise difficult question...

Scottish independence: UK financial regulators could raise difficult questions ...
Scottish Daily Record
THE Scottish Government's plan to keep the pound and UK financial regulators in the event of i...


Scottish Independence: Scotland 'would face legal woes' over plan to keep the...

Scotsman

Scottish Independence: Scotland 'would face legal woes' over plan to keep the ...
Scotsman
They have urged the financial sector to watch out for a ?Scottish Government plan B? for financial r...


Experts warn SNP over independence currency plans - Herald Scotland

Experts warn SNP over independence currency plans
Herald Scotland
Experts warn SNP over independence currency plans. The Scottish Government's plan to keep the pound and UK financial regulators in th...


Test yourself with our 2012 quiz of the year - Scotsman

Scotsman

Test yourself with our 2012 quiz of the year
Scotsman
3 What is the name of the parliamentary instrument that allowed the transfer of power from Westminster to Holyrood that lets the Scottish...


UK Bookmakers Face Divergent Outcomes in Scottish Independence - Businessweek

UK Bookmakers Face Divergent Outcomes in Scottish Independence
Businessweek
Britain's two largest bookmakers agree it's likely that Scots will vote to remain in the U.K. in a referendum planned for 2...


SNP

SNP - Google News
Google News

Colleges get £5m windfall - Scotsman

Colleges get £5m windfall
Scotsman
The SNP administration plans £205m of construction and maintenance work with the funding. The Scottish Government hopes the £5m for colleges will help students enjo...


Handing baths over would mean closure, say Elderslie campaigners. - TheGazett...

Handing baths over would mean closure, say Elderslie campaigners.
TheGazette.co.uk
Members of the Save Elderslie Pool group have reacted angrily to a proposal by SNP councillors Andy Doig and Stephen...


Doctors 'treated badly' in pay dispute - The Courier

Doctors 'treated badly' in pay dispute
The Courier
British Medical Association chairman Dr Brian Keighley said The ?unwillingness? of the SNP to mitigate the impact of a UK Government decision to tak...


Scots health secretary seeks EU backing for minimum alcohol pricing - The Cou...

The Courier

Scots health secretary seeks EU backing for minimum alcohol pricing
The Courier
The European Commission's consultation on the SNP-administration's proposals closed yesterday and Health Sec...


£205 million stimulus package 'to spark Scottish building boom' - Building De...

£205 million stimulus package 'to spark Scottish building boom'
Building Design
In his autumn statement Chancellor George Osborne said Scotland would receive a share of an additional £5 billion he wa...


CBI asks Alex Salmond more than 170 questions on independence - Telegraph.co.uk

Telegraph.co.uk

CBI asks Alex Salmond more than 170 questions on independence
Telegraph.co.uk
Along with its New Year message, CBI Scotland published a report listing in unprecedented detail dozens of...


Is Salmond the best person to secure a Yes vote in 2014? - Herald Scotland

Is Salmond the best person to secure a Yes vote in 2014?
Herald Scotland
While most of it was spent in the state of splendid inaction that the SNP has made its own, the year will be remembered by man...


Neil seeks support for alcohol price policy - Herald Scotland

Neil seeks support for alcohol price policy
Herald Scotland
The European Commission's consultation on the SNP-administration's proposals closed yesterday and Mr Neil is asking them to back minimum pr...


Colleges to share £5m windfall - Herald Scotland

Colleges to share £5m windfall
Herald Scotland
The SNP administration plans £205m of construction and maintenance work, and hopes the £5m for colleges will give students a better learning environment...


Scottish independence: Business challenge to SNP on independence - Scotsman

Scotsman

Scottish independence: Business challenge to SNP on independence
Scotsman
The SNP Government has insisted that Scotland would have a representative on the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Co...


Referendum 2014 (Google News)

Scotland referendum - Google News
Google News

Cameron faces rebellion over EU - Herald Scotland

Cameron faces rebellion over EU
Herald Scotland
Of course, a Yes vote in that other referendum, on Scottish independence in 2014, would throw up a whole new series of questions on Europe. Yesterday, ...


EU referendum threat to Cameron leadership - Herald Scotland

EU referendum threat to Cameron leadership
Herald Scotland
DAVID Cameron must promise an "in-out" referendum on Britain's European Union membership or face defections to the anti-EU UKIP and a challe...


Leaders: Next year will be critical in addressing business concerns - Scotsman

Scotsman

Leaders: Next year will be critical in addressing business concerns
Scotsman
David Watt, head of the Institute of Directors Scotland, urges Scotland's political elite not to spend 2013 obsess...


UK Bookmakers Face Divergent Outcomes in Scottish Independence - Businessweek

UK Bookmakers Face Divergent Outcomes in Scottish Independence
Businessweek
Britain's two largest bookmakers agree it's likely that Scots will vote to remain in the U.K. in a referendum planned for 2...


Scottish Independence: Referendum Puts Decency at Centre of Ballot [BLOG] - I...

IBTimes.co.uk

Scottish Independence: Referendum Puts Decency at Centre of Ballot [BLOG]
IBTimes.co.uk
Objections to the idea of Scottish independence have tended to fall into two distinct categories o...


Leaders: Second referendum chatter should be nipped in the bud - Scotsman

Scotsman

Leaders: Second referendum chatter should be nipped in the bud
Scotsman
The spectre of a second referendum also raises a worry among those campaigning for Scotland to remain within the union ...


Business lawyers form special independence units - Herald Scotland

Business lawyers form special independence units
Herald Scotland
SPECIALIST constitutional units have been set up in some of Scotland's largest commercial law firms to provide advice on the potential...


Referendum and Murray among most written-about in 2012 - allmediascotland.com...

allmediascotland.com (press release)

Referendum and Murray among most written-about in 2012
allmediascotland.com (press release)
THE upcoming referendum on Scotland's constitutional future was one of ...


SNP MSPs back second independence referendum - Telegraph.co.uk

Telegraph.co.uk

SNP MSPs back second independence referendum
Telegraph.co.uk
It's important that Scots vote to remain in the Union, and do so convincingly.? Nationalists in French-speaking Quebec lost...


Scottish Independence: SNP brushes off talk of 2014 'neverendum' - Scotsman

Scotsman

Scottish Independence: SNP brushes off talk of 2014 'neverendum'
Scotsman
Nationalist backbencher Sandra White said another referendum could be held if independence is narrowly rejected and t...


Tartan Army Message Board (often features political threads)

Anything Goes

Archie Roy
Just heard on the radio that he died today. Was in his lectures at Uni for a couple of years, a very nice, unassuming and clever man.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-20858029

Squash Footwear
Restarting squash 2013, got my 'bat' but need advice on shoes........£40 budget.


Scotty's Pastor's Salary
It's a good site this - a treasure trove of information:

http://theelephantsd...he-5g-campaign/

In 2009, Pastor James MacDonald received over $500,000 in monetary compensation from Harvest Bible ...

And A Timely Warning - Westminster & The Welfare State

Margaret Thatcher's role in plan to dismantle welfare state revealed

Quote

The proposals considered by her cabinet included compulsory charges for schooling and a massive scaling back of other publi...



Another Timely Reminder - Westminster Governments & Scottish Jobs
And yet another example of how they didn't care if they lost party support because they think Scotland will just accept these Westminster decisions at the end of the day. They think we are weak and...

A Timely Reminder - Tory Governments And Scottish Self-Government
Newly released papers under the 30 year rule show that she thought this abgout letting Scotland make decisions for itself:

Devolution deemed dormant by Margaret Thatcher, new records reveal


Yet o...

Cern
I'm going to be in Geneva on the 12th Jan and by all accounts it's a bit of a boring place so I've thought I'll head out to CERN for some interesting stuff to do. Unfortunately, the guided tour in ...

Would You Live In This Street?
Without wanting to indulge in childish inverse snobbery..... DICK place.

http://www.bbc.co.uk...siness-20851999

Naff Pressies
OK So now it s all over ..... bar the shouting and alka seltzer treatment ...... what did everybody get ? And who go tthe most naff pressie ??


George Bush Snr
Looks like there is going to be a vacancy at a few golf clubs and at the Iluminati table shortly.

Political Betting - Scotland section

politicalbetting.com » Scotland
The web's premier resource for political betting.

Scotland?s most accurate pollster suggests that Alex Salmond?s magic might be...
Ipsos-MORI blows for Alex Salmond/SNP/YES in the week the referendum deal was signed. twitter.com/MSmithsonPB/st? — Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) October 18, 2012 In the week that the referendum dea...

A Marf Cartoon and a guest slot from James Kelly on polling and the Scottish ...
Have the polls “consistently” shown that Scots are opposed to independence? Something that I know has privately frustrated the SNP in recent weeks and months is their perception that the media, esp...

The SNP loses the battle for a multi-question referendum
BBC News But 16 and 17 year olds will be able to vote The BBC is reporting that a broad agreement has been reached between Westminster and Edinburgh on the Scottish independence referendum which is...

Will Westminster stage the Independence referendum before Alex does?
The Sunday Times are running a story that, if Alex Salmond doesn’t agree to a single question referendum, then Westminster will organise the referendum for next year, and not devolve the necessary ...

How will the Scottish independence referendum affect the next general election
James Kelly looks at the various scenarios. One thing is for sure ? Scotland will be returning MPs to Westminster at the next general election, whenever it is held.  On the SNP?s proposed timetable...

How will the Olympics affect the Independence debate?
Does a successful Team GB underline ?we?re stronger together?? PB reported earlier this week on a Comres poll which reported an upsurge in support for the Olympics now they?re underway (and taken b...

YouGov Scotland poll
There’s a new YouGov poll out on Scottish matters. On the independence front, 30% are in favour on independence. This represents a decline of 1% since March and a decline of 3% since January. 54% a...

And after the big disappointment at Wimbledon?
Marf gives her take If you would like to purchase one of Marf?s prints or originals, please contact her here. Recent Threads

MORI: SLAB closing the gap on the SNP in Scotland
Ipsos-MORI There’s a new Ipsos-MORI poll of voting intentions for the Scottish parliament and these show the same trends that we saw in the Scottish local elections on May 3rd. Scottish Labour movi...

Can the SNP and Greens work together in the pro-independence campaign?
James Kelly on the pro-independence campaign If there is to be a Yes vote in the Scottish independence referendum, a prerequisite is surely that the Yes campaign itself is as broadly-based as possi...

Why the SNP is playing down the consequences of YES
How changing the question added 16 points to NO’s lead There’s new polling out from TNS-BMRB into the form of wording for the Scottish Independence referendum due to take place in October 2014. The...

A MORI double whammy for Salmond and the SNP
Three weeks into the campaign and NO increases lead There’s a new telephone poll from MORI of Scottish voters and the results are not encouraging for Alex Salmond or his party in their effort to se...

How much of an influence will money have on the Independence referendum?
and the 2015 General election? The Sunday Times reported over the weekend that no campaign was in disarray, due to major unionist parties donors not willing to donate to the no campaign. Willie Hau...

Is Alex Salmond one of the day?s big losers?
Why did the SNP make Glasgow their key target? In our PB prediction poll a couple of weeks ago a reasonable majority of participants said that the SNP would win control of the city of Glasgow. That...

Will being called ?Skintland? boost the YES or NO campaigns?
What’ll the “Economist cover” do to the referendum? Above is a version of what’s said to be the front cover of the latest Economist which hasn’t going down too well in nationalist circles overnight...

Scot Goes pop

SCOT goes POP!
A pro-independence blog by James Kelly - voted one of the UK's top 100 political blogs.

The imperial delusion lives on
The SNP's Angus MacNeil and Labour's George Foulkes found some rare common ground a few days ago in condemning the Queen's 'silent' participation in a cabinet meeting, on the grounds that it breach...

In wake of Newtown, Baker goes sinister
Question : If you were an American libertarian blogger who had spent almost every waking moment over the last decade advancing the fantastical notion that a gun free-for-all has made your country s...

Why the Northern Ireland demographic shift does matter
Ten years ago, the results of the Northern Ireland census were greeted with a not inconsiderable amount of unionist gloating. All the expectations had been that there would be evidence of a signif...

John McTernan has a butler, or the kitten gets it
A couple of years ago, I did a brief round-up of the more unusual search engine queries that had led unsuspecting surfers to this blog. I thought it was high time for a more comprehensive list, al...

Our Head of State for 2060 has just been selected...
We don't have a clue about his or her personality, talents or intelligence, but we're absolutely certain that he/she will be just the chap/chapess for the job.

Democracy and rationality at its fin...

Open questions
Leaving aside the obvious jibe that 'Open Unionism' is a contradiction in terms, my eye was caught by this article of the 'anyone to the left of Enoch Powell is a Marxist' variety -

"It became mor...

Response to Rhoda Grant's consultation on criminalising the purchase of sex
Having got into the swing of responding to consultations earlier in the year, I thought I'd have another go with Labour MSP Rhoda Grant's consultation on criminalising the purchase of sex (ie. the ...

Ashcroft poll : SNP lead in Westminster voting intention
The Tories' billionaire puppet-master Lord Ashcroft recently conducted a UK-wide mega-poll of Westminster voting intention, with a sample size some eight times larger than a regular poll. That mea...

Special appeal : Scots Wikipedia contributors needed!
I've just found myself writing a rather impatient email reply to someone whose heart is in the right place, but who I think is lashing out in entirely the wrong direction. Basically, he's one of o...

Clinton doesn't just oppose "separatism" - he opposes democratic self-determi...
Our old friend Duncan Hothersall was full of beans yesterday about the supposed 'endorsement' of the No campaign by Bill Clinton. In truth, of course, it was no such thing - the comment Clinton ma...

Today is Thursday 15th November 2012...
Remember that date. It will live in infamy.

Just eighteen months ago, brave men and women across the United Kingdom raised their hands in defiance, and said: "No. This shall not be." In doing s...

It's been a while...
There was a time (in 2009, I think) when this blog was primarily a round-up of Scottish subsamples from UK opinion polls of Westminster voting intention. It would be a bit difficult to sustain tha...

The black hole where the US media's coverage of third party candidates should be
It was an interesting experience watching CNN's election coverage as one of the roughly 1% of voters who had plumped for someone other than Mitt Romney or Barack Obama. Although I'd been in that p...

It's independence referendum day...
...in Puerto Rico.  The fact that you probably didn't know that (no offence to anyone who did!) should perhaps cause us to question our assumption that any independence referendum is bound to attra...

Questions to which the answer is 'if you don't stop asking these horrid quest...
Gordon Brown may not have been the greatest ever PM, but it's now clear that was not the summit of his political career. No, the role that history has been preparing him for is to resurrect Labour...