Thursday, 5 May 2016


If you are thinking of waiting up for results and you've taken the precaution of a day's holiday on Friday, here are the times that the results are expected. No guarantees.

Between 01:30 and 02:30

At about 03:00

Between 03:00 and 03:30

Between 04:00 and 04:30

Between 05:00 and 08:00

Wednesday, 4 May 2016


So, tomorrow (or today if you're reading this in Thursday) is election day. Suddenly after what seems like months of campaigning, it's here.

There's no doubt that, in terms of news coverage, it has been overshadowed by the British referendum on Europe, which the first ministers of the Celtic nations asked David Cameron to postpone so that the twos sets of campaigns wouldn't coincide, and which he, with customary lack of respect for any of us, refused to do.

Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland just aren't that important to the dodgy one.

But for us this is important. How we run health, education, law and order, the environment, transport, and much more... and later in the parliament... a measure of social security and tax policy, will be decided tomorrow (today).

This wasn't ever a "pretendy wee parliament", well not unless you lived in England or the Bahamas, or wherever Mr Connelly put his head of an evening, and it's certainly not now. This is real stuff, real politics that affect our every day lives. 

And our votes matter.

I've put off writing anything about the election until now, and coming late to the party means that it's difficult to find anything much to say that hasn't been said more eloquently or most authoritatively by others, so sorry if you've read it all before.

Opinion polls show and opposition parties have already conceded that the SNP will be the biggest party in parliament. The Labour Party and the Ruth Davidson Party (formerly know as the Tories) have openly set their sights at being the main opposition party. 

There's not even been a pretence that they were aiming for Bute House. At least not since Kez said something about wanting Nicola's job and her desk, and then even Labour people shook with laughter.

Up and down and round and round they have gone in the polls, battered by scandals from London or Edinburgh: The leader of the RD Party (Dodgy Dave) and the drawn out saga of Daddy's offshore dealings; the Tories tearing themselves apart over Europe; Labour's internal strife over Mr Corbyn; Kezia's consideration of voting for independence in certain circumstances, denied within the hour of her saying it, but jumped on by the leader of the RD party as evidence that they, and only they, were the party of the union, and of course, most recently, the engineered scandal of anti-Semitism in the London party.

So nothing is certain; we just don't know who will come second and who third. No one has had much to say about Wee Willie, but the Liberals will come in 4th or 5th, I expect, if anyone's interested. Patrick Harvie has had a good campaign and he hopes to better his parties 2 seats.

Now as an independentista (I won't call myself a nationalist, because I don't think I am), I've been happy with the idea that Nicola will be returned as First Minister, but I find all the "certainly" a bit worrying.

And this is why.

If there was thunder and lightning and snow, floods, a volcanic eruption from the Dundee Law, and a tsunami tomorrow, somehow I would go and vote, but not everyone would or will. 

Some folk will forget; some people will be too busy; the rain might put some off; the bairn's sick...or that late meeting at work on the night of the club darts competition might mean getting to the polling station is more difficult. And some will say... oh well, it's in the bag anyway, so what will one, or rather two votes matter?

So my message is, it's not in the bag

There are constituencies on a very slender majority. Didn't I read somewhere that one constituency had a majority of just 8?  Let's not take anything for granted. We need every vote. So please vote and,  if you've a neighbour or a friend or relation who has difficulty getting out, make sure you offer them a lift, or contact your local SNP office and ask someone to pick them up. 

Every vote counts.

I'm not clever enough by half (or so Munguin says) to write about why both votes should go to the SNP, but if you are in any doubt, both Scot Goes Pop and Wings have written about the dangers of giving your list vote to a tiny minority party.    

Like most other bloggers I wouldn't dream of telling anyone how to vote. Everyone has their own views, their own priorities, and everyone will interpret the pros and cons of tactical voting on the list howsoever they see fit. 

All I can tell you is I'm not gambling with the result. I've read James and Stuart and I know what I'm going to do.

I want an SNP government under Nicola Sturgeon, and that is what I will vote for. 

With both votes.

So good luck everyone in your constituencies throughout Scotland.

I guess many of us will be awake till the votes come in and we know our future.

Tuesday, 3 May 2016


Oooops. Now we know why you like your system better, Kez.
How's that again George?
Good luck in the London Mayoral elections, by the way.
The last poll I saw you were on...erm 0%
What odds are you getting on that?
Reasonable, but some of them are far from nice. As Mr Corbyn, or for that matter Ms Dugdale or Ms Lamont. They might not think they were too nice.
Here we go again. YAWN.
Uh huh, well that worked a treat, didn't it?
Maybe he could become a gardener. I suspect they won't want him back as a towel folder.
I know you are too much of a gentleman to do it Humza, but I know what I tell the wee junior minister.
It would start and end with F.
We would if we were independent. And will when we are independent.

If you laugh at a child who is different, he will laugh with you because his innocence exceeds your ignorance
(but only just).

Both Abu and Helena have recommended THIS post on Wee Ginger Dug. 

I was asked to reproduce it here, but I'm sure that Wee Ginger Dug has more readers than I do (many of them the same) and I'm not quite sure it's the thing to do to reproduce another blogger's work, but what I'm happy to do is recommend it in case you missed it, as I had.