Friday 10 June 2011


I was delighted to read that our estimable prime minister was setting up a committee of his brightest and best to defeat the Scottish Nationalists. I think he’ll need them, because so far they don’t seem to have got much right.

You see, from what I’ve seen there is an air of the left hand and the right hand singing from different hymn sheets, if you get my drift.

Michael Moore, (our much respected and well loved Liberal Democrat Secretary for Scotland, or whatever he calls himself these days, not the American satirist), says we will need two referenda to become independent; that anything organised by Scotland can only be advisory, and can carry no force of law as constitutional affairs and elections are the business of Westminster. And presumably the Westminster government would only be advised by a Holyrood referendum if it advised exactly what they wanted it to.

On the other hand, the prime minister, says that this is not so. Only one referendum for him, but that unless Alex Salmond asks the right questions, he, David Cameron, will take it over. We get to organise it but we have to do it the way England wants it.

Do what Big Brother says. Alex, or David will take away your ball.

Respect agenda, not.

There is an excellent analysis at Iain Macwhirter’s blog here, and I won’t try to equal it because I never could. Suffice to say that Mr McW ends by suggesting that the unionist team needs to up their game.

I don't think that they are capable of upping their game, especially when they seems to believe that the team that they have put together to defeat Salmond will do anything but cause resentment in Scotland. A couple of posh English boys, Cameron and Osborne, and a couple of Scots who have long since become Londoners (Gove and Fox). Oh yes, and the Liberals, who recently proved themselves so popular in Scotland.

Their brightest and best?

Just Scotland's cup of tea.

And Labour MPs who take up with the government over this matter should remember what happens to people who get into bed with Tories. Five Liberals, relegated to the back benches in Edinburgh. Even the arch right winger Tom Harris, comfortably ensconced with a large majority in his constituency should think about some of the crushing blows inflicted by Scots who dislike what the Tories are doing, and anyone who seems to be cosying up to them.

Labour Lords will be safe, of course. They have no need to worry about losing their cushy little billet. They have it until they die. But then the brighter Scots might wonder if perhaps their noblenesses maybe had a vested interest. After all, Barons ffoulkes, if we were to separate, the House of Aristos (and the cash) would no longer be open to you.

I wonder if we won't have The Archbishop of Canterbury on our side though...


  1. It's interesting that this unionist A-Team is being put together to combat the SNP, rather than to promote the positive aspects of the union. I mean fair enough, there are no positive aspects of the union, but they could at least pretend that's why they're doing it. But no, it's about the SNP, as usual.

    To defeat an opponent, you first need to understand them, because you need to know what you're fighting against. Unionists still go on about independence being an SNP "obsession" or an "SNP agenda", which shows they still don't understand what it's about. Independence is about more than the SNP, it's just that the SNP present the best chance of delivering it. Their battle is with independence, not with the SNP.

    I found it amusing in Michael Moore's car crash interview on Newsnicht last night that he mentioned that they were putting forward the "positive case" for the union. Since when?!? I've yet to hear anything positive about it. Saying you've done something isn't the same as actually doing it.

    Such a painful interview to watch, though. Moore is badly out of his depth. At one point, I thought he had no choice but to get up and leave.

  2. I’m not sure if Scottish Lords have all that to be cosy about. In the event of independence there is no cosy billet in a Scottish upper house for them to park their backsides and steal, steal, steal. I can’t see the English keeping the likes of his grace of Celtic Park (John Reid) or his grace of total failure (Forsythe) in their upper house post independence. Nor will the English Government be needing an Advocate General, so bye bye Lord Wallace. That would after all take the west Lothian question into whole new territory.

    As for the Tory A-team. Well it certainly brought a tear to my eye when I fell off my chair laughing. Is the half-wit in chief so arrogant and big headed that he cannot see that any question or referendum forced on us by the Tories will be bound to fail. They had much better play along with the SNP and hold on to Scotland for that little bit longer. I’m wondering if the Chancellor would have put all those obstacles in the way of getting our black stuff out of the North Sea to inflate Westminster coffers if he had had a crystal ball that told him the SNP would win resoundingly.

  3. Morning Doug:

    I didn't see Mr Moore on Newsnicht, but I'll go haul it up, as soon as I think I can cope with someone car crashing... yeah, that will be right away.

    I suspect that Moore has been promoted well beyond his capability.

    If they say that they are fighting a positive campaign, which is what politicians always do, then at least a proportion of the sheeple will believe that that is indeed what they are doing. The trouble is that they are up against a truth that says there is not much to be positive about, and they know that.

    Of course for THEM there is the opportunity to play in a much large pond and to be “international” figures, striding the globe with the likes of Mekel, Hu and Obama. And of course for virtually all of them it seems at the end of even the most inauspicious careers (Reid, Forsythe, ffoulkes), there is a seat in that “other place” and the title “Lord” which so many of them crave.

    There won’t be any of that in Scotland.

    For us “ordinary people” with no chance of a seat in the Lords, if you care that your country is a big player in wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and who knows, soon Bahrain, Iran, Syria... then I guess that is a big selling point for the union. Scotland couldn’t afford and wouldn’t want WMDs and a seat at the top table. If on the other hand you think that it would be better if the roads were fixed, the trains were efficient, old and sick folk cared for by the state; that the economic policy of the country would be focussed on Scotland, on our industries and potentials, then I guess there isn’t a better answer than independence.

    Anyway, with the A team consisting of people with no argument better than the fact that their argument is positive... although in what way, and about what it is positive exactly, no one can tell, and with a team for independence, as you say, not just the SNP, talking a positive message about what an independent Scotland would look like (for a start there would be no reason for a hike of 19% in the price of domestic gas, as there is plenty in the North Sea for Scotland), I’m pretty certain that we can win this argument, the referendum and our country’s freedom

  4. Ah Munguin, we seem to have highlighted the same noble lords.

    Talking of the good Mr Bruce, I was, only a while ago, thinking about the Liberals and how they have, in coalescing with the Tories, more or less obliterated themselves. There is no “yellow water” between them.

    I was thinking too about the fact that they used to be a federal party, the Home Rule party, and yet, both Michael Moore and Wullie Rennie, have caved completely to the Tory stance. From being a quasi-independent party, the Scottish Liberals seem to have become a part of the English Liberals, who, in their turn, appear to have become Tories. Clegg and his honourable friend just burbled Tory policy yesterday in Scotland. Pathetic.

    I wonder at Wullie’s insistence in following that road, when he has seen where it leads. He had an opportunity to work with the SNP to become part of the solution, rather than part of the problem, and to show that his party stood apart from David Cameron’s Westminster poodles. He chose the road to oblivion. A strange choice.

  5. Tris

    Rennie has also said that he agrees with Moore that two referendums would be needed. I hope AS throws that one back at him at FMQs.

    By the way is it just me or was FMQs greatly enhanced by the tory reserve team not getting to ask their usual pathetic questions. Mind you at least Rennie did not make a tit of himself yesterday so maybe it is better to give the clown a question so we can all laugh.

  6. Tris/Muguin

    Just in case you missed it in the Hootsmon. Just when you thought they could not reach any lower they have surpassed themselves with this from someone called Pete Martin.

    The Hootsmon march to 20000 circulation continues unabated. (sorry reading the comments too much)

  7. Tris/Muguin

    If you want another laugh have a look at Labour Hame, yes thats the name I kid you not.

    If you read the articles you will find that Labour did not loss the election, the SNP stole it by two dirty tricks. Hiding the fact that Alex Salmond was in the SNP and that no one knew he wanted independence, and then putting AS for First Minister on the ballot paper.

    I was sent to the naughty step for saying it may have been the policies that Labour championed over 13 years in government at Wastemonster. I asked them which of the policies were "socalist" Trying to be helpful I listed them from Trident to PFI.

  8. when-youre-in-hole-stop-digging-michael will save you trawling through iplayer tris.

    Dubbie the shortbread site has excluded a lot of postings as they will never learn why people are rejecting them.

  9. Cynical

    Do you think that if they all keep telling each other how wonderful Labour are thy will believe it?

    Some of the terms, voter hoodwinked by Alex Salmond for First Minister on ballot paper, could they be more insulting to Scottish voters if they try?

    One of them managed to get "Braveheart" a mention as well, truly pathetic.

  10. tris

    I'd have Camerons baby if it stopped the separatists in their tracks the fact is the uniters in scotland are in the overwhelming majority.

    The overarching issue of keeping the 'union' safe is above mere petty party politics.
    The separationists are seeking to construct a one party state at the behest of one single Nationalist party.
    and the death Nell of multi party democracy as we know it.

    The English Torys are evil bastards I'll admit
    but they are evil bastards we can boot out if the snp were ever to gain overall power in an Independent Scotland.
    Then we would be ruled by an even bigger evil bunch of bastard we would never ever be able to boot out.

  11. Dubs: I didn't see it. I must have a look!

  12. 'Struth Dubs, that really is the pits. I suspect that there are many people in the UK who are purple with rage at the way we are being penalised for bankers' greed while bankers are one of the few groups that go unpunished.

  13. I commented on Labour Hame, on that guest post by an MP. He wrote about the positivity of the union, by asking a pile of questions and not answering them...

  14. Thanks CH. I'm speechless. He really is a twerp isn't he? Promoted well above his level of competence.

    He has to go... Even Fluffy is better than that.

  15. Niko, that's you daftest post ever... and lord knows that's saying something.

    You think that Cameron's Tories and all that they do to hurt the poor and the vulnerable are better than an independent Scotland that would permanently have a left of centre government?

    You think that Scottish Labour wouldn't be the predominant party after independence.

    The SNP might continue to exist in some form but a lot of people might well go off and join other parties once the job of the SNP is done.

    I don't think that they would disappear but they would be different.

    Do you seriously think that Scotland would be anything other than left of centre?

    You'd rather have Cameron and the havoc and misery he brings... ?

    Oh well, whatever.

  16. I am afraid I just do not get the likes of Nikos who seem he'll bent on keeping Scotland in a bantustan or Native American reservation or Palestinian type status.

    I would genuinely love to grasp their logic, but it would seem many see oppression, they see it and categorise it as liberation: An Orwellian situation.

  17. Error: "hell bent" although there is a certain Freudianesque association to the typo.


  18. PS The A-team label has a certain comedic turn to it. Is the viceroy, MM, the insane goofball that was Murdoch?

    PPS Need to edit after hard nights on the uisgue: "...where... oppression...".

    A good result for Bo'ness (and my Japanese students can't get their head around the current status quo either regarding the "UK" which might not be much consolation to Nikos for nor can my North American colleagues).

  19. Hello David:

    No one can understand Niko.. Orwellian, as in Animal Farm?

    Yes another good result for us. We have to make sure we live up to the promise we offer. A much better Scotland! One that maybe someone will be able to understand, American or Japanese.

    Michael Moore.... the goofball...

  20. Labour spending: Gordon Brown and Ed Balls ignored warnings and wasted billions

    However, Gordon Brown discarded the advice and embarked on a £90 billion increase in spending when he became prime minister.

    Former Icelandic PM’s court case to begin today

    If only!

  21. Yes CH. I wish we lived in a country where prime minister could be held to account for their actions. But no, not here where they put themselves on pedestals. You can ruin the country, or in the interest of your own status and standing with the American president and the Italian and Spanish pms, be jointly responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent people and no one will touch you because you are the British prime minister.

    Of course you can have an image in your head of everyone owning property and shares, but without any practical idea of what it will do to the country, and you end up with a state funeral, a lordhood and an hereditary title for your criminal son.

    In Iceland everyone knows the pm, probably most of them personally. You see him at the shops, popping out for a sandwich for his lunch; his kids go to the local school. He's just an "ordinary person". He can be tried for incompetence. I can’t think of a prime minister of England and its associated adjuncts that shouldn’t be behind bars.

    Class and assumed status is the ruin of this dump.

  22. Oops it sounds like Cameron is stirring things on the unemployed and having children!

  23. Where CH?

    Does he want them sterelised?