Monday 3 December 2012


Labour For Independence organiser, Alex Bell, went to his first Labour branch meeting on Friday  to gauge how Labour branch activists feel about Scottish independence. This is his summary : (from Yes to Independent Scotland)
'As you know, I spoke at last night's meeting of the Strathkelvin branch of the Labour party. 

'The numbers (look away now Johann) were 2 for the union, 4 (FOUR!!!) for independence and the rest open to indy but need a few things sorted out first. 

'There was strong support for a return to real Labour values, heavy criticism of "weak" leadership at both Holyrood and Westminster, anger at how the membership had not been consulted over Better Together (or anything else), opposition to the slide to the right and an understanding of Scottish Labour's own need for independence to remove the "Milliball 'n chain of new labour" and its obsession with home counties focus groups.

'This was our first go at engaging within the party itself. If Strathkelvin is anything to go by, we made the right decision by staying and taking them on for independence and the party's soul from the inside.

'It looks like we're speaking for a lot more party members than Curran, Lamont and Murphy care to admit. And maybe even more than we first hoped.'

Alex Bell.

Quite apart from the independence part of this, which is clearly good news for Scotland, there is the fact that Alex is highlighting the dissatisfaction, already mentioned by our own Niko, in one of his saner moments, which frustrates Labour voters all over Scotland, and I'm willing to bet in Northern England.

Of course there is not much the Northern Englanders can do about it except, it seems, from last weeks' by-elections, vote UKIP, which probably won't solve their problems. But at least they are not the Tories (of whichever colour).

Alex Bell is a brave man. Not everyone has the nerve to take on the vested interests of Labour in Scotland. He has. More power to his elbow. If he helps to deliver victory to a free Scotland in 2014, he will have rightly earned his place in our history.


  1. I really wish them well and hope they become too big for MSM to ignore. It will then be that much harder to push the "yes is a vote for the SNP" line!

  2. I agree Anon. At the moment despite Scottish Socialist and Green parties being a part of the Yes campaign, there is still a feeling that it's all about the SNP.

    I don't really know why people think like that. It seems perfectly obvious to me that once independence is achieved the future will be open to all parties.

    I don't say the SNP will disappear, but it is bound to lose some people to other parties, and I reckon it will stay in a sort of left of centre way as a distinct party, clearly without the objective of independence.

    But there is no doubt in my mind that we will not be looking at a country ruled forever by Alex Salmond. Alex shows that there are people who do not support the SNP who are prepared to fight for the kind of country Scotland wants to be but isn't allowed to by London.

  3. We're ah Jock Tam's bairns, regardless of our politics, its good to see Scotland being put first before politics.

    Alba Gu Brath.

  4. perhaps you would do Labour for Independence a favour by not LINKING Alex Salmond Scottish Labour most hated man(even more so than Brownlie and thats saying summit) It may surprise Nats but Alex is a very big stumbling block for many right minded folk.

    They rightly see this as a vote Alex and independence and not just Independence.

    Now if Alex was to resign and immigrate to to the outer limits of the multiverse...the yes vote could increase.

    Ooops me moment of sanity just run out.

    Alex Bell umm gonna pop round tonight and knee cap him a little bit.

    a return to real Labour values thatl be what we used to call...err! silently Socialism there i said it

    Wonder if Alex could embrace democratic Socialism

  5. Niko

    Labour hate Alex Salmond because he is a winner and all the Labour leadership are losers.

    Labour will always be losers if they continue with their obsession with Alex Salmond, mind you it does stop them thinking about things like policies for Scotland.

    I would bet that Alex Bell is more likely to embrace democratic Socialism than any of the present leaders of the North British branch of New/Old/One Nation or any other fancy name they can think up to disguise the fact that they are no longer Labour.

    Come to think about it that should be the new name in Scotland "No Longer Labour" you heard it here first.

  6. Now if there was to be a postal ballot of Labour Party members that would be very interesting indeed.

  7. Yes Davy, it absolutely is.

    That's what we should all be striving for.

    Never mind the personalities at the "top". Think instead of the country and its people.

  8. Hmmm Niko...what moment of sanity would that be.

    Well, if people think that independence is all about Alex Salmond they are wrong.

    And frankly whether I like the man or not, I'd rather have him in my corner than Lamont or Davidson.

    They are just jokes!

  9. BTW Niko... You must teach me the art of kneecapping a little.

  10. Dubs. I'm absolutely convinced that Lamont is a good woman with decent socialist policies in her head. OK, she's probably nothing like leadership material, and as for being the first minister of an independent country, well, joke.

    But she is bound to follow broadly the same policies as her English bosses, because they are the same party. (Scotland, as you have pointed out, only has a branch office status.)

    It would be insane for the Scottish branch to be a socialist party, while the Southern English branch was advocating Conservative policies.

    And to stand any chance of being elected in Britain they absolutely have to be right of centre.

    It's the same with the Tories. Murdo was clear that the right of centre in Scotland needed a separate, Scottish-centric party, and tried his best to set it up.

    But Cameron wasn't having any of that and sent his pr people to help Ruth win the leadership (a job she is monumentally not qualified to do). So Ruth, the inexperienced, does exactly what she is told to do.

    They are digging their own graves. Even those who are against independence want Scottish things, Scottish ways.

    Good name for them... Kinda reminds me of the Proclaimers... Labour no More!

  11. Tris

    I think that you are giving Lamont more credit than she deserves.

    Was she not elected to be the leader of the North British Branch, and that everything that happened in Scotland was her decision? How has that gone for her? They will not even let her appear on TV, its left to the likes of Margaret Curran.

    If there truly was a Scottish Labour party they would never ever deliver a speech about a something for nothing culture in Scotland and insult generations of people who at one time used to vote Labour, and also the rest of us who had more sense than ever vote Labour.

    Maybe Alan Grogan and Alex Bell can help start a true Scottish Labour party.

  12. Labour shall remain the democratic progressive bulwark against the tartan Tory regime led by Salmond.

    We will defend the union, and the ideal of a borderless future for humanity.

    We say no to irrational nationalist parochialism, and say YES to a progressive FUTURE.


  13. @Dean

    Defend us against what.

    Prescription charges?

    £9,000 student fees?

    Publicising of the NHS?

    Robbery of our natural resources?

    Need I go on?

    It's a free world though and you're entitled to your opinion, deluded as it is

  14. Deano

    Very Churchillian i can see the EU flag fluttering gently in the breeze its got ch gnawing his own leg off.

    But you forgot to add

    Salmond delenda est.

    to every post


    UK politics is all of the right snp included you want left wing politics best build a time machine.


    'sense' must say you hide it very well

    Salmond delenda est.

  15. Boorachbill

    Defend us our family's and our free future from the evil of the snp tyranny

  16. There's some right bampots on the internet but thinking Labour are progressive well that's just deluded!

  17. On the day we find our future queen of Scots has the future King or Queen of Scots growing in her belly.

    we have the unedifying sight of disloyal unpatriotic Nats maligning our blessed sacred much loved eternal union.

  18. Relax Niko, consider how fortunate you are to be permitted Internet access in your padded room ! Take your pills like a good little soldier and switch the lights (if you are allowed to control the switch) and have a wee lie down.

  19. Well Dubs, when Vinegar Face Curren is the more acceptable side of Labour, you have to wonder what the other one is.

    No. I don't really know what the woman is about. She was a shadowy figure as deputy leader under Gray, but I have the impression that she would probably have made a reasonably good councillor, with her original beliefs in no to nuclear weapons, yes to universal benefits, etc.

    I don't think that she's really evil, I just think she's been put into a job she can't do, because the rest were even more unutterably awful than she was... god help them.

  20. What utter rubbish Dean. Have you seen where Labour is plotted on the graph of political parties?

    It's rubbing shoulders, right of centre with the Conservatives.

  21. @ cynicalHighlander

    Bow?? I'd have thought he would be on his knees with his nose pressed firmly to an anus!

    Whos anus..... well anyone in authority would do I assume.

    Maybe that's why he spouts so much keich!

  22. Very good post there H.

    And yes. I don't know where Dean gets the idea that Labour is progressive and the SNP are to the right of them.

    The funny thing is that a few months ago when Dean was a died in the wool Tory, I'm sure he wasn't calling the SNP tartan Tories... because that, in his book would have been a compliment.

  23. Boorachbill:

    Welcome to the blog :)

    We can certainly add to your list the education system which encourages academies (started by B£air, I think), which were supposed to be run by not for profit organisations (although they were permitted to sell off playing fields for housing, thereby making millions overnight).

    Well there are now so many (because that madman has forced schools into it) that there aren't enough not for profit organisations, so they will now be allowed to make profits.


    So education is being privatised by the back door. Of course this is sod all to do with me, except that, if the state in England ends up paying less for education (which in fairness I doubt) then no matter that we have a separate system, less money will come our way.

    It stinks. And it was B£air, that well known progressive that came up with the idea.

    Progressively he has made himself a multi millionaire. That's the only progressive thing about him.

  24. OK Niko, we know you know a bit of Latin.

    How a man of the left can say that when there are hideous inroads from the right killing off our people... just amazes me.

  25. Give me a list, Niko, of tyrannical things that the SNP has done

  26. Absolutely right Anon.

  27. For heavens sake Niko, keep that silly woman and her sex life out of this blog.

    It's a kid, like thousands of other people in Scotland have every day.

    The difference is that if she is having morning sickness, she won't be left in a busy corridor while a bed is found. She'll have people bowing and scraping; she'll never be left unattended a screaming in agony, or lying in her soiled night attire.

    Nope. You and I are paying for her to be treated specially.

    God help us it's bloody mediaeval crap.

  28. ha ha ha ha CH. Brilliant.

    Yeah, what's all this morning sickness garbage. She obviously just doesn't want to work. Skiving bitch.

    Get back to work, or get stacking shelves at Tesco.

  29. I don't know how people can be taken in by this fairy tale nonsense BB.

    But Niko seems to be... and dean most assuredly is.

    I sometimes wonder if they aren't the same person...

  30. Oh and Niko, she won't be the Queen of Scots. That's a title for a reigning queen, not some girl the future king of Scots picked up at St Andrews.

  31. BB: We've tried to get him to take the pills and lie down, but he's too hyper.

    It's the classical education that did it.

  32. Thanks Tris

    I could have gone on, and on, and on......

    Life's too short and we are all too aware of just how long Albions list of perfidy is!

    Happily for our two friends there are enough of us who will vote YES on the day to gain them and their kin a finer (almost said better) future. And of course, if they don't like it there is always the A1or M74 to take them to where they can continue to bend the knee in subservience

  33. Sorry, bloody iPad predictive text Boora should, of course, have been BoorachBill

  34. BB: I'm having keyboard trouble too tonight...

    Yes, well, people will be welcome to be here in the new Scotland, but those who don't like it will also be welcome to leave if that is what they want to do.

    I'd certainly be considering my future if for some awful reason we lost... because I think they will absolutely crucify us if we vote no.

  35. Salmond delenda est?

    I never realised you were into Cato and Romano-Carthaginian history Niko!

    You never cease to surprise me :)

    But no, I won't go so far as crying out for the 'destruction' of a man. My problem is with the philosophy of nationalism itself. So maybe 'nationalism delenda est'

  36. There are, as you know, Dean, different kinds of nationalism.

    There is the kind of nationalism that is practised by the BNP. It is base on hate and the belief that (in that particular party's case) white British people are superior to everyone else on the planet.

    Patently and laughably untrue.

    Then there is the kind of nationalism that is practised by the SNP, based on an internationalist approach, all we want is that we should control our own destiny, in as much as, and the way that other countries control theirs.

    The SNP's nationalism has no truck with colours and creeds. it is simply about not allowing our lives to be run, our taxation dictated, our so called "defence" to be decided, by people for whom we did not vote and with whose policies we are not in any way in accord.

    An independent Scotland would be a very different place, but it has no desires to break ties with old friends.

    We would however, welcome the possibility of making new friends with countries whose philosophies we share, but with whom we are allowed no contact.

    Try not to conflate the two nationalist philosophies. They are even farther apart than the political aspirations of the people of Scotland and those of the South East of England.

  37. As ever, the only people fixated with Salmond, Scottish Nationalism (which unlike British nationalism; is A Bad Thing,) the SNP more generally and the idea that there are squads of unruly cybernats constantly denegrating the English nation and being terribly rude about the Labour party* (the last bastion of progressive social democracy...)

    - Are unionist supporters.

    There is nothing progressive about any of the unionist parties, especially labour, I maintain, they are worse than the tories or the libdems who lie openly and are just naive (in that order.)

    With Labour though, they brought us the spin doctor, they didn't just lie, they went out of their way to play us all for fools.

    There's maxim famously fucked up by George W Bush that applies here.

    * I'll allow you that one.

  38. Good to see that Niko admits that Labour is a party of the Right.

    And Dean, didn't Dean used to be the Staunch Tory of this blog? Now he has slid a millimeter to the left in partnering with Labour, both hating the leftward Social Democratic Party of the SNP.

    Who introduced the WCA and Atos? Labour. Still supporting it too

    Same with Workfare

    Same with Trident

    Same with privatising the NHS

    Same with loading down the schools with PFI

    Going on yachts with oligarchs and Gideon Osborne

    All Labour

  39. Dean is Effie in drag British Imperialist Nationalists just BIN them.

  40. Niko,

    Future Queen/King of Scotland??? - I suppose, in the traditional manner, some poor footman had to do all the hard work. Just think, in a republic, Taz could be a candidate for President. I've heard, in the strictest of confidence, he makes all the important decisions in your household although you'd prefer, again in the traditional manner, your next door neighbour to make them for you.

  41. Yep. That's it Pa.

    I'll put up another post showing where they reckon the Labour Party is in comparison to other parties/people in the UK and the world.

    "Fool me once er and I'll...erm, fool me twice.. and I'll fool you erm... well, anyway, you can only make a fool out of me 500 or so times, before I start to notice". DubYa

  42. Actually, the more you describe them, Anon, the more I can see why they got on so well with aforementioned DubYa.

    They share his philosophy.

  43. Goodness CH, what a thought!

  44. Did I hear that you were thinking of applying for a job at Buckingham Palace, John?

    I'd quite like Taz as president. He'd be more intelligent than most of the royals or the ex politicians...

    .. and better looking too.

    Mind you, just for a laugh, how about President lard Mental Mickey Forsythe?

  45. I see the torys are being a tad more cautious with more pfi. Deals
    Mainly cos labour gave out So many they can't afford to put even more dept onto us the paying public .

    Still fancy that the scum torys unwilling to hand oodles of
    Our cash to the private sector as they are already ripping us off
    From previous deals done with the labour government

  46. I'm waiting for the official Tris & Munguin take on the pregancy!

    That will be a hoot! Always enjoy a good dose of 'Tris Very Short Intro to Why the Royals are Lizards'


  47. Very simple Dean.

    I don't give a s***.

    As long as I'm not expected to endure hours of details of it (I was obliged to not listen to the Today Programme this morning, which frankly isn't much of a burden as they keep getting things wrong, and insulting Scotland), I seriously don't care any more than if it was some woman along the road that was pregnant.

    I will say though that Cameron must have had his beak put out of joint, because sure as eggs are eggs he was counting on her to be delivering around about the time that we are having our referendum.

    I suppose they'll have to have another one, or marry off Ginger instead.

    Doubtless that will bring more great joy to the nation.

    Happy now?

  48. What, Dean, I will have a good laugh about is the demented witterings of all the idiots who are falling all over themselves about it, like no one had ever been pregnant before, and no one had had bad morning sickness before.

    I find it particularly ridiculous coming from any party that backs people on Chemotherapy being sent out to work for nothing because they are that will be the Tories and the Liberals who are enforcing that, and Labour who initiated it

  49. Niko. They say it is the only way that we will ever get anything, so now they are going to build roads that way, but you will have to pay to drive on them, in addition to paying your road tax.

    At least they are going to take some profit back, so they will be able to afford more wars.