• AFRICA

    AFRICA

  • FALKIRK

    FALKIRK

  • LONDON

    LONDON

Here’s yesterday’s piece about how the media use polls to create uncertainty and pursue their own agendas. It referred specifically to Yougov, and suggested that polls are often constructed to create ‘outlier’ outcomes, before the pollsters use their multitude of polls saying different things to retroactively claim they’d been right all along. Here’s today’s Independent.. read more →

Here’s The Daily Record raising some legitimate questions about nurse Claire Austin. And here’s The Daily Record’s Torcuil Crichton explaining that the fair questions the Record itself put were really groundless and vile allegations made up by the SNP and pro-independence ‘trolls’. Crichton and The Record editor who commissioned both pieces will chuckle about this.. read more →

As a bank-holiday adjunct to this piece, here’s a weekend article written by a journalist generally agreed to be a good thing; the sort of person who often writes illuminative stuff challenging lazy thinking regardless of its political shade. But not this time. Kevin McKenna’s article for The Herald, a newspaper with an editorial policy.. read more →

Stuart Campbell, who curates and writes for the website ‘Wings over Scotland’, is by a long, long way Scotland’s most read columnist/commentator. ‘Wings’ readership is on a par with that of the largest Scottish outlets. And because the figures for on-line newspapers include hits on every part of the paper, a small number of columns.. read more →

26 May 2017
May 26, 2017

Nigeria’s missing president

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Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari, was last seen by people other than his own staff in early May. According to his staff, he handed over ‘co-ordinating power’ to his Vice President and headed to London for medical treatment. Shortly beforehand, he had returned from around two months in London, also apparently receiving medical treatment there. His.. read more →

I wrote this yesterday about President Buhari of Nigeria. There’s been a lot of interest in the blog in Nigeria. I’ll answer a few of the key points raised, here. First, if you’re a president then it’s up to you to show people you’re alive and well – it’s not up to your people to.. read more →

A rich guy (Herald, paywall) who gives the Scottish Labour Party a lot of money is taking his money away for now because the party refused to allow a Tory-Labour administration in Aberdeen. The rich guy says he doesn’t understand why Labour, in the middle of a general election where the two main players are the.. read more →

Nigeria is one of the most important countries in the world. It’s by far the largest country in Africa; it’s the fastest growing economy there by a long chalk. Nigerians all over the world hold positions of power and importance. From a UK perspective, one of the largest contingents of secret service (‘Mi6’) in the.. read more →

The Scottish Parliament’s ‘First Minister’s Questions (FMQs)’, modelled on the UK Parliament’s ‘Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs)’, sees the First Minister take questions in the chamber each week. Yet there’s a very significant difference which goes to the heart of what the parliament’s supposed to be all about. PMQs lasts half an hour. Members put in.. read more →

The Tory Party’s proposals on care for the elderly are aimed at one group – present Labour voters in Labour-held midlands/northern seats whose elderly parents live in bought council houses. And get this – technically, it’s actually progressive! This single policy shift may well lead to the Tories taking a number of ‘safe’ Labour seats in.. read more →

According to The Guardian, The Tories are running a social media advert which runs simply: “A vote for Labour is a vote for Corbyn”. The simplicity and apparently obvious truth of this statement makes it seem almost Zen-like. It has the touch of Lynton Crosby about it. He’s the man who won David Cameron his.. read more →

Here’s a wee test that might help clarify a thing or two for some folk. Think of a marginal constituency in Scotland. You might want to choose a Labour held one like Edinburgh South, where both the Tories and SNP are challengers. Or you might prefer a borders constituency where it’s neck and neck between.. read more →

12 May 2017
May 12, 2017

How The Daily Mail laughs

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Here’s Scottish Daily Mail man Alan Roden bragging today about his prize from the boy’s club which is Scottish journalism. Roden’s the identified spokesperson for Scottish Labour at the moment – the second most prominent Scottish Labour person at this general election time, in fact. Here’s our piece from last month explaining how by joining.. read more →

12 May 2017
May 12, 2017

Orange panic

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Herald reporter Gerry Braiden writes today that; “Ulster-style loyalism has again become a shorthand for elements of the Yes movement to denigrate opponents”. The article is entitled; “Folk devils, Orange panics and Scotland’s council elections”. So, who’s causing the ‘Orange panic’, then? Why, that’ll also be The Herald. So, hilariously, the Herald hyped an ‘Orange panic’.. read more →

09 May 2017
May 9, 2017

Not so Great Britain

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The ‘Just say No’ camp are fond of reminding Scots of the magnificent achievements of the UK as a nation. But Britain’s sense of itself is horribly distorted and the myths the No camp direct us to are so much self-serving claptrap.  Post-imperial historians have often questioned ‘Great’ British nationalist myths, of course, but the.. read more →

Sometimes, it’s worth a look at what the bookies are saying about elections. They’re a measure of where bets are being placed, of course, and not a perfect outcome predictor by any means. But it’s worth noting that what are passing in the media as ‘predictions’ of a dozen Scottish Tory seats are based upon.. read more →

Falkirk and I often get the blame for the Brexit, Corbyn and the Tories ascendancy. It’s an outrageous slur, obviously…… Yet today, my old stomping ground of Falkirk is indeed pivotal and provides the perfect illustration of the choice before Labour at this historical time. Over the last few elections, Labour and the SNP have.. read more →

It’s election day. Everything that can be said about today’s council elections in advance of actually knowing the result has been said, surely? So in this downtime, just for fun, I thought I’d speculate about a few things in respect of what might follow the first Scottish General Election. With any luck we’ve had the.. read more →