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Just for a bit of light relief after today’s truly abysmal front-page, Daily Mail columnist Stephen Daisley wrote this yesterday; “Grievances are the carbohydrates of nationalism; eliminate them and the body grinds to a halt”.  Evidently, Daisley is not a man who has given serious thought to the Atkins diet. But more tragically, Daisley used to.. read more →

Theresa May is meeting Nicola Sturgeon today so we can expect to see the return of nonsense about hard borders and whatnot for a few hours. But in truth, the Tories’ position on a referendum is much more coherent than Scottish Labour’s. Theresa May’s argument is that Scots can’t have a well-informed referendum until they know.. read more →

Like most folk, I think Red Nose Day seems a pretty good thing. I know that those who conceived it are good folk. I don’t really stop to wonder if the money raised on the night displaces donations elsewhere in a zero-sum competition between big NGOs. I just think the folk on the telly and.. read more →

22 Mar 2017
March 22, 2017

Martin McGuinness

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I first met Martin McGuinness formally a few years ago during a short spell as shadow minister for Northern Ireland. He was Deputy First minister. Before this first meeting Shaun Woodward, who’d recently been Northern Ireland Secretary of State, told me that however many times I met Martin McGuiness, each meeting would always feel slightly.. read more →

Speaking in his very former constituency of Kirkcaldy, Gordon Brown will apparently say today that the SNP and Tories are both sooo yesterday in their obsession with parliamentary sovereignty. What he’s all about these days is ‘popular sovereignty’. Hmmmm. What’s that then, mate? Well, it’s; “the idea that power rests with the people and that.. read more →

The SNP has taken command of the moral high ground. If Scottish Labour’s leadership can’t learn fast in the coming few days, they’ll let down many decent folk who still have faith in them and Scottish Labour will be done for. The UK prime minister has said she’ll ignore any decision by the Scottish Parliament.. read more →

This week, Netherlands prime minister Mark Rutte has sought to retain his job by mimicking the fascist PVV. In that country these days it’s an orthodox, indeed popular, part of electioneering to call not just for immigration to be reduced, but for actual Dutch citizens to be ‘sent home’ on account of their ethnicity. Conservative Rutte used.. read more →

Various Scottish Labour politicians have been appearing on radio and telly this morning to tell us what Jeremy Corbyn “really meant”. But since we all speak the same language as Jeremy and his words were said directly to the media and were therefore intended for us, when he said as second referendum was; “absolutely fine”,.. read more →

Jeremy Corbyn  said today that he thinks a second Scottish independence referendum would be “absolutely fine”. And one of his advisers said, at the same time (same link); “Kezia Dugdale is absolutely right to oppose a second referendum at Holyrood to keep the pressure on Nicola Sturgeon to rule one out”. In any line of.. read more →

BNP and UKIP aside, politicians and party activists across the spectrum abhor racism. The BNP courts it openly and UKIP finds it far more effective to use the dog whistle of immigration. You’ll find unreconstructed attitudes around race, gender, sexuality and the rest especially amongst the older generation, of course. Within the boundaries set by.. read more →

Following a Guardian CIF article by Stirling University PhD student Claire Heuchan, The Guardian reported that Ms Heuchan said she had quit Twitter in fear for her safety having been abused on social media. Other media outlets followed-up and we published this. The Scotsman reported: “Attacks, including a comment on her (Claire’s) blog calling her an.. read more →

This post serves as a postscript to today’s earlier post. In her speech today, Theresa May said this: “As the Government serving the whole United Kingdom, formed in a Parliament drawn from the whole United Kingdom, the UK Government exercises a responsibility on behalf of the whole UK that transcends party politics and encompasses all aspects.. read more →

Theresa May will speak at the Tory Conference in Glasgow today. As the most powerful person in the UK, she will say it is her priority to champion the cause of Scottish unionism. This is very helpful, because – combined with the terrible absence of the Labour Party – it makes starker than ever the.. read more →

When Stirling University PhD student Claire Heuchan, who is black, wrote this comment piece for the Guardian, some independence-minded folk criticised both her and the Guardian. At the core of her piece was: “Equating racism with Scottish nationalism is a massive false equivalence, yet both perspectives are reliant on a clear distinction being made between.. read more →

Scotland has essentially three types of self-identified unionist now: Greater Englanders, SNP-haters and regular folk. Greater Englanders. The Scottish Tories own this type. They deprecate any notion of Scots choosing a non-Tory direction, understandably, and see their role as supporting a right-wing, Brexiteer, UK administration governing Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland but made up.. read more →

By conventional political standards, Nigel Farage certainly deserves that peerage or knighthood he covets. Under his leadership, UKIP grew to take the largest share of the UK vote in the last EU election, took 3.9m votes at the last general election and, of course, was a key variable in the UK’s Brexit. A lot of.. read more →

For independence supporters, Former Labour minister Brian Wilson’s comments (Herald, paywall) at a weekend Fabian event during the Scottish Labour conference are important. Wilson is a serious man with successful careers in journalism (he founded the West Highland Free Press) and politics behind him, and with a successful present career in business. He helped save Harris.. read more →

That Khan episode is worthy of a little bit of deconstruction. As everyone knows, The Mayor of London – certainly Labour’s most important politician elected to public office, and one of the most senior non-white and Muslim politicians in that part of the North which comprises Western Europe and America – put out a Tweet.. read more →