Saturday, June 10, 2017

The barking mad benchmark

Just a quick note to let you know that I have a new article at The National, reflecting on the SNP's general election victory in Scotland.  It ponders how the exceptional triumph of 2015 may in retrospect have been a curse rather than a blessing, because other parties have been able to use it to set an absolutely absurd benchmark for SNP success and failure.  You can read the article HERE.

51 comments:

  1. I know it's devolved but I think education results played a part , some comparisons might not have been fair but it hurt.

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    1. I have a kid at a rural primary school, and the comparisons were very fair.

      It's a bloody mess, and people are rightly angry about it.

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    2. I work in education, and the decline in standards, general disorganisation and chaos is something to behold. I've been in the game 12 years, and the contrast with 2005 is striking. As I have personal and direct experience of this decline, I believe it when I hear stories of SNP incompetence in other parts of the public sector. We need them out and soon.

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  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    1. James Dornan @glasgowcathcart 11 hours

      May will go down in history for being PM who deliberately brought climate change denying, homophobic bigots into government

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    2. Bethany Black‏Verified account @BeffernieBlack 14 hours ago

      We can't even laugh at the Americans any more, at least they only have one Orangeman fucking up their government.

      Delete
  3. Rape Clause Ruth and her revolting Bigot toriesJune 10, 2017 at 7:54 AM

    Roddy Macdonald‏ @Logicsrock 9 hours ago

    #DUP to address PM as Gudewife May as they can't bring themselves to utter a name as papish as Theresa.

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    1. SUPPORT RUTH DAVIDSON

      If she can pressure the Tories to a soft Brexit then Indeyref2 is off the table.

      Independence is not the issue. What’s best for Scotland is the issue.

      Delete
  4. SNP and the Indy movement have just had a very timely reminder of our powerlessness. Even as the Scottish Government and with a 95% dominant Scottish political presence at Westminster, the SNP has had zero control over the calling of elections or referendums and just as importantly zero influence over the agendas that those elections/referendums are framed in.

    This is the reality of our position and it has to be faced.

    The unionist parties with 6% of seats in Scotland were able to very easily completely dictate the election agenda in Scotland. That agenda was to go heavy on IndyRef2 and Independence. Ironically, something that should have been welcomed by any Independence supporting governing party of Scotland.

    By becoming so successful, the SNP's softly, softly gradualist approach has run now its course. That success was only possible because any Indyref before 2014 was never truly considered a viable route to Independence by our Unionist opponents and therefore no real threat. It is this mistaken belief that allowed SNP to decouple the issue of Independence from elections and sidestep campaigning for Indy. By simply promising a referendum on the subject the issues of 'normal politics' were able to be fought over as if we were a normal country. Unionists allowed this because the alternative would have forced them into admitting their underlying undemocratic 'Union above all' true beliefs, and the SNP embraced this also as it allowed them to make great electoral progress as a party by fighting elections on their competence 'to stand up for Scotland' within the UK system. Pragmatically, both sides were relatively happy with that solution at the time.

    That is no longer the case. Unionists now view even the promise of holding a referendum as itself an existential threat to their Union and are therefore now fighting every party political election, (local, Holyrood and Westminster) on this existential point of crisis for them. The old gradualist approach option of 'don't scare the horses' no longer exists. All Unionist parties are already in such a panic that they are now wildly kicking their democratic stables down! (Our orange order and Unionist experience from IndyRef1 and Holyrood campaigning is now mirrored in DUP representation at the very heart of UK government!)

    We have had no part in setting this new agenda. It is being purposely set by all the Unionist parties in Scotland and the UK along with the support of all UK wide media outlets. This is not something the SNP or Yes movement can change. The only option now for the SNP is to once again embrace the political battle for Scottish Independence at every opportunity, encourage and support the Yes movement to build and campaign locally within our communities and hold the ScotRef as planned, just as soon as the Brexit deal (or lack of one) is apparent.

    Scotland is now at the point where the unionists are making 'normal politics' impossible to be discussed outwith the frame of Independence. So be it. The final endgame is here and if the SNP do not explicitly fight for Independence from now on, and make the strong case against the union at every turn, the party political IndyRef1 surge will dissipate completely and their historic opportunity will be lost.

    We dodged a bullet on Thursday. We could have very easily lost our Pro Indy majority all together. The game has changed and the SNP need to adapt to the new political realities of Scotland in the UK and do it fast.

    braco

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    1. "We have had no part in setting this new agenda. It is being purposely set by all the Unionist parties in Scotland and the UK along with the support of all UK wide media outlets. This is not something the SNP or Yes movement can change."

      Actually it's absurdly easy to influence it where it matters the most.

      Stop buying it.

      Simply don't purchase any pro-unionist newspapers.

      Stop paying the British Broadcasting Corporation and it's adjuncts to blast it's pro BritNat agenda all over scotland.

      The BBC is only a content provider so find another one like Netflix, KODI or the myriad of other streaming and TV services that will get you all the TV in the world (literally) you desire.

      As for the next indyref, we've just been through a host of elections so we aren't about to be panicked or start the full-scale Indyref2 campaign right now. Particularly when there's the chance that yet another election is around the corner because the jawdroppingly incompetent tory party are now permanently stuck in headless chicken mode.

      The Brexit catastrophe has barely started and it more than anything else is going to be the trigger for a great many sweeping changes in the public mood.

      Including, most pertinently in scotland, those who used to vote SNP and were pro-Indy but support Brexit.

      If they were fine with voting for the tories then they must be given the time to see this incredible farce play out in full. It's already started after all.

      Delete
    2. The claim from all three branches of the yoon bigot horde and the BBC was the SNP being obsessed with independence. All SNP canvassers could point to the manifesto, every interview, every press release and every leaflet and say this is not true.
      That matters when you are exposing a lie. Playing their game would have been a genuine disaster. And not just for this election.

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    3. Of course it looks like the SNP are obsessed with another referendum when that is the sole campaigning tactic of every other party and the media. I got a Tory mailshot every day blaring about it.

      The SNP needed not to ignore it, but to fight on it. Every mention of 'divisive second referendum' should have been countered with 'democratic second referendum'

      And made clear it would be after the Brexit deal is clear.

      The SNP campaign should have been to work people into an outrage that Theresa May can stand in the way of democracy. And how SNP MPs can protect Scotland best and push for more devolved powers in the Brexit negotiations.

      There was no positivity or attack tactics on the Constitution. Only weak defense.

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    4. Anon: Labour did not surge in Scotland. Labour held steady through the Corbyn effect by taking some left wing and idealistic Yesser votes from SNP. They were after all told by the SNP that this election was NOT about Independence.

      The loss of the SNP seats was down to a massive 10-15% drop in our vote turning up. Our voters were simply not enthused by the 'strong voice for Scotland at Westminster' message. I certainly wasn't, as it's essentially the same message SLAB always ran on in past elections and is at heart a Unionist one. Our Yes vote did not turn up in sufficient strength to insulate us!

      The Tories mobilized the Unionist vote with their relentless 'NO to IndyRef2' and so gained 10-15% (not the same 10-15%) which in conjunction with our lack of Yesser vote allowed to happen what we saw on Thursday.

      We better pray that there is no quick second election because that could be disaster for our very fragile majority. As it stands we risk losing many more seats to Corbyn's Labour (not SLabour).

      First past the post requires 40% plus to gain landslides. The Yes vote easily gives that 40% plus if it is motivated to vote. Leadership and motivation are the SNP's job. They must take it seriously and stop dreaming that they can somehow take the entire country with us by isolating their campaign from the anti indy screechings of their opponents and msm. Their is no possibility of that.

      At some point the SNP are going to have to fully and convincingly counter what is a continual anti independence (anti democratic) campaign being held by our opponents at every opportunity available to them. Better to start that now before all advantages gained from the only real time that Independence was ever fully campaigned for consistantly in Scotland (ie during IndyRef2).

      We all need to remember The SNP had 6 MP's pre IndyRef: It was only proper widespread indyref grass-root Yes campaigning that created the 2015 SNP vote surge in the first place NOT the the other way around!

      Scott: me or Yessers watching msm is not the issue, its the people we need to convince watching it that is. Its the control of the agenda that is the msm real power, not necessarily their message control. If the MSM want to talk about Independence, lets talk and stick the unanswerable case for indy right to them. That's what IndyRef1 gave us the chance to do last time and it was very effective. We need to build on that again and get ready for the next (successful) ScotRef. That's why the unionists are uniformly screeching 'No to indyref2!' after all.

      braco

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    5. "me or Yessers watching msm is not the issue"

      Purchasing it 100% is.

      You simply don't get to complain about the Bias in the media if you are happily paying their wages.

      Use the internet of the host of alternatives, it's not rocket science.

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    6. Scott, why do you assume that I do? I do not. That however, does not change what I have said one iota. Fancy addressing the substantive issues rather than making assumptions you have no right to make.

      braco

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    7. My post was general not specific. The "you" was not singling you out but pointing out the obvious to anyone and everyone who watches and pays for unionist media.

      I already addressed the other points not least of which is the sizeable number of Brexit supporting Yes and SNP voters who turned at the GE and need to now see the Brexit catastrophe play out.

      Delete
    8. Ok Scott, but I was talking about the MSM's ability to set and frame an agenda, not necessarily the message. That ability is what influences even the internet and pro indy social media. That will not change by yessers not paying their wages. Their wages are not paid by Scotland as we are only a small% of their income and the union is their main market. Also, newspapers are already loss leaders to their rich and powerful owners, who are willing to take the financial drain in exchange for the power they give. Not buying a paper is a protest, it will not stop it from being published. That only happens when the owners can no longer afford to subsidize them from their other financial interests.

      Still worth doing but not really an answer unfortunately.

      braco

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    9. 'That will not change by yessers not paying their wages.'

      It is the only possible effective recourse yes supporters have to that which we all know is grossly biased and distorting.

      Those who produce the unionist spin and media simply do not care about complaint's procedures, flagging up glaring examples or even academic studies showing what we all know to be true. They answer to one thing and one thing alone. Themselves. If they weren't being paid to do it they wouldn't be doing it.

      We didn't affect change in the poll tax by conceding it was pointless and too much to take on and the TV Tax is not so different. Except you can easily find a replacement and you aren't even breaking the law if you simply stop watching and using the BBC TV service and it's adjuncts.

      As for the Tabloids and other unionist organs.. again, it's not exactly a hardship to just not purchase them. Far from being completely futile boycotts have affected sales quite markedly for certain tabloids in the past.

      The press really doesn't matter all that much now anyway due to technology if we're being honest.

      TV does however. It still has a huge market share and hold on people. Though technology has already made the replacement of the old State TV models easy and cost effective that has to gather more support. It already is gathering ever more support simply because the old State License fee and delivery system is an obsolete dinosaur in today's Fibre Streaming TV-to-go Boxset world.

      As you say, worth doing though I would dispute it not being an answer. Just not the only one perhaps.

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    10. Party wins seats - 'The people have spoken!'
      Party loses seats - 'The media are biased!'

      Every party, every time.

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    11. Great posts, braco, as usual. Yeah, if the SNP don't fire up the Yesser vote this next election could be a grim experience for all of us.

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    12. Cheers Sean :) How's things going pal, well I hope (apart from UK in the process of becoming run by the DUP of course!)

      braco

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    13. Party wins seats - 'The people have spoken!'
      Party loses seats - 'The media are biased!'

      Every party, every time.

      Sadly for you scots have been well aware of the westminster bubble Bias since long before even the first Indyref. Nor has it ever been limited to good times or bad. So nice try but no cigar champ.

      I'm afraid you do sound a wee bit gullible and naive. The type that would have believed the Iraq Weapons of Mass Destruction bullshit without question.

      Delete
  5. Rape Clause Ruth and her revolting Bigot toriesJune 10, 2017 at 9:36 AM

    CarolineJMolloy‏ @carolinejmolloy 1h

    Tory minister on #r4today says they will have a vote on reducing time limits on abortion in exchange for DUP support.

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  6. The education issue was an easy target. Unfortunately, in seeking to tackle attainment the SNP took on a really difficult task, because not only do you have to find what works in school, you also have to counter matters outside school over which you have hardly any influence. A child whose parents have low educational attainment themselves, in a home without books, and no place to study, and without friends who study, has less chance to attain.
    I also think that Nicola was too quick to raise the matter of indyref2. Alright, she didn't want it immediately, but qualifying details are ignored by opponents. It would have been better to wait for a couple of years of public clamour.

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    1. If we had waited we would still have been drowning in a tide of shrieking from the tories and Labour about 'opportunists!' and 'why didn't you say so earlier!?' It couldn't wait because the process was starting and the objection had to be put there and then.

      The Labour and tory BritNats were also still bringing up Indyref2 at every opportunity they could before then so it's not as if it wouldn't have been an issue anyway.

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  7. Has anybody else noticed how the ruth the fat nazi emphasised being a, and I quote the obese cow directly here, "a Protestant Unionist", in here defence of the coalition of bigots.
    It seems to be only a matter of moments since we were howled down in a torrent of rage for calling the Yoon parties Unionists.

    Shame there's no MSM to hold politicians to account these days.
    What are the views of the other morbidly obese homosexual Daisley?

    His beloved Ruth now beholden to people who want him dead for being a queer. Silence has fallen and their mouths are stuffed with Saudi gold funneled through Ulster.

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    1. the poster above "GWC2" is a far-right tory sockpuppet bigotJune 10, 2017 at 10:19 AM

      Piss off GWC2.

      We are hardly about to fall for your thinly disguised tory sockpupet bigory.

      Delete
  8. James Dornan SNP‏Verified account @glasgowcathcart 11 hours ago

    To every Labour voter who voted tory to keep out the SNP, enjoy your DUP controlled Government. At least I can sleep at night

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  9. CarolineJMolloy‏ @carolinejmolloy 1h

    Tory minister on #r4today says they will have a vote on reducing time limits on abortion in exchange for DUP support.

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  10. Now is not a time to soften indy stance. It's time to remember snp are the party of independent government, not the party of devolution.

    The game is now a straight fight for Scotlands very soul. It's win or bust and the long game will kill independence. Recapture the spirit of 2014.

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    1. Absolutely correct November13!

      braco

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    2. Rape Clause Ruth and her revolting Bigot toriesJune 10, 2017 at 11:34 AM

      There's nothing 'long' about the game we are now in where the incompetent tory PM could be deposed and replaced today, tomorrow or even next week.

      Or the imminent prospect of yet another GE that the tory party meltdown is heading towards.

      Delete
  11. Kipper Theresa and her westminster bubble incompetentsJune 10, 2017 at 11:46 AM

    Owen Jones Retweeted The Guardian

    And the one thing we know about Theresa May is that she's a woman of her word


    The Guardian‏ @guardian

    Tory-DUP deal: Ruth Davidson 'receives assurances' from PM over gay rights

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    1. Rape Clause Ruth and her revolting Bigot toriesJune 10, 2017 at 12:19 PM

      Marco Biagi‏Verified account @MarcoGBiagi 26 minutes ago

      When I was a minister DUP's Arlene Foster wrote to me asking us to curtail access of Northern Irish citizens to Scottish same-sex marriages.

      Delete
  12. The SNP may have won a first past the post victory in Scotland (something they derided when other parties achieved the same thing), but the popular vote is nearly two to one against independence. This is the only thing that matters in discussions about a 2 option referendum.

    On a separate note, I'm delighted to see that Scottish Conservative votes saved the government and kept out Jeremy Corbyn's socialist rabble. For the first time in quite a while, I am proud of Scotland.

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    1. The Unionists made this election about one policy – an independence referendum. The election leaflets had nothing else on them.
      They lost. The SNP has more seats than all the “No Referendum” parties combined.
      That’s democracy. No matter how the MSM try to present it, this is a complete vindication of the SNP’s policy and rejection of Unionism.

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    2. "For the first time in quite a while, I am proud of Scotland."

      Me too. We stopped you from getting a majority :D

      Delete
    3. If losing 1/3 of your MPs is complete vindication, I'd hate to see what a bad night looks like.

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    4. A bad night is when you only get 12 out of 59 MP's and your arch enemy gets 35 out 59..... Oh I forgot, you think that's winning, don't you? Strange.

      Delete
  13. Rape Clause Ruth and her revolting Bigot toriesJune 10, 2017 at 12:58 PM

    Ruth's great political strength is that she is unhampered by integrity or self-respect. This will allow her to work happily with the DUP.

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  14. The Clusterfuck Coaltion of Tory DUP incompetenceJune 10, 2017 at 1:03 PM

    Robert Peston‏ @Peston

    Senior Tory MP: "We all f***ing hate her. But there is nothing we can do. She has totally f***ed us".

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  15. I have 13 missives from the Ruth Davidson party in the heap next to the door. 13 separate deliveries between the Council and General elections but only two were posted by hand. Where is the money coming from when they can only enthuse a few hundred pensioners to attend their conference to witness the Messiah RD (peace be on her)?

    Edinburgh SW if anybody cares. JC (Cherry) 1 - 0 labtorydems girfuy!

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  16. Rape Clause Ruth and her revolting Bigot toriesJune 10, 2017 at 2:12 PM

    Alistair Davidson‏ @moh_kohn 3 minutes ago

    Will "Ruth Davidson's Team" of Scottish Tory MPs vote for or against coalition with the DUP, @RuthDavidsonMSP ?

    ReplyDelete
  17. Well, the North East Unionists turned out. We didnt.

    Banff and Buchan was always one that would be difficult. Especially given Nicolas desire to be in the EU rather than EFTA which most fishermen want.

    I dont know what the right answer is, if we talked about independence I think our support in the North East might have been even lower.

    Doors slammed in faces, abuse on the streets. This is all due to the indyref 2 decision. You west coasters really should try it up here. Scotland isnt the west coast, it is made up of different issues.

    The Scottish Gov has messed up rurally with the cap payments, messed up in the coastal fishing towns because of the EU stuff and messed up in north east towns due to the education and NHS Grampian stuff.

    You throw another indyref 2 into it, in an area that voted No, quite heavily and what the fuck did you think would happen? I would politely suggest for the west coast people dressed in suits that think they are new thinking to take a run and jump. They caused this, they live in a Glasgow bubble and think scotland is Glasgow.

    It is not. Glasgow voting yes didnt deliver independence.

    Whether talking about independence would galvinise our support in the north east more than the unionists is very doubtful. Especially when we cannot even answer the basics!

    I am scunnered, as I have said before. We need the worm to turn with Brexit, let people see why we are worried about it as people just dont see the issue yet.

    No one knew a snap election would be called, if the SNP knew, there is no way they would have done this indyref 2 stuff. You can all harp on about how time is running out etc, but do you not realise that the desire isnt there just now. Wait and see what Brexit brings. It is that simple.

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    1. They caused this, they live in a Glasgow bubble and think scotland is Glasgow.

      Damn right. Well said.

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    2. FFS Chalks, listen to yourself!

      West coasters is it? Divide and rule much?

      All the complaints you seem to have are with the SNP government. I am not SNP (or any party). So, am I getting this right, you are complaining that we didn't get Independence because Glasgow voted Yes?

      Aberdeen and the North east has been SNP off and on for years now, but really what use is that if in all that time it's simply not translated into support for a Yes vote?

      SNP (and all pro Indy folk) need to find and press into service effective arguments for Indy that make sense to their local communities and circumstances. There are plenty of those arguments. Simply getting folk to vote for SNP (in the knowledge that they will vote No to Independence) is not good enough.

      Lets be frank here Chalks, if the SNP had been able to deliver their SNP vote for Yes in the North East during IndyRef1 we would be independent as we speak. They could not.

      Look at the map from Thursday, it bears a striking resemblance to the IndyRef1 voting map. This is why relying on the SNP or any political party to win Independence is not the way and why transposing the unionist/national party votes and extrapolating a future Indyref vote in some way is a mugs game.

      We need political parties to call the referendum but locally organised and focused campaigning by the grassroots of each area has to be allowed to take the lead when developing relevant arguments for Independence for their own communities.

      That's what happened in the west central Scotland and that's why folk voted Yes in spite of being Slabour heartlands at the time and relentlessly told to vote NO by their politicians and representatives.Do you think you are the only activist to have a door shut in your face (or be spat at)? West coast is also the Rangers/orange order heartlands and not known for its shy and retiring attitude when it comes to self expression so, please get a grip.

      Look to yourselves for how to make progress with Independence in your area as an argument. It's a long, long time since Independence was front and foremost in any SNP political election campaign and this last one has been no different.

      Don't get angry at your fellow yessers, look to them for ideas and possible ways of campaigning that could maybe be adapted or developed for effective use in your community. Look to develop your own new methods that work instead of sticking to methods that have obviously not worked (from what you are saying)

      There will be no Scottish Independence without an Independence referendum. Get organised, ready and start campaigning for Independence itself and not just a political party. It was, after all, the specific independence campaigning during IndyRef1 that the SNP and Greens benefitted from during the 2015 elections, not the other way round. They will benefit again but hopefully this time in an Independent Scotland.

      braco

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    3. I am suggesting that every SNP decision is viewed as how it will play out in Glasgow. Nowhere else.

      Delete
    4. Also, How can you seriously suggest we start talking about independence when we dont have answers for things? Do you know that sets us back from getting over the line?

      Delete
    5. There are many different answers to the campaigning issues surrounding Independence. As many answers as there are views of what Independence means or visions of what an Independent Scotland will be.

      Your post that initiated this discussion Chalks, was centered on how different you believe the North East is to west central Scotland. Fine. I understand that, but the implications of that line of argument is that no one 'answer' fits all communities.

      Asking for some central body or political party to hand you down their answer and then complain bitterly that they are no use cause they somehow don't come from your community is intellectually lazy. What makes you think that it suits ANY community perfectly? It IS one size fits all party politics and the very reason party politics is in no position to win us a referendum. Parties get away with central policy making (and campaign control) because they can win a landslide election on 40% of the vote. That's no use in a referendum.

      We need to have a central repository of all the different arguments of a future Scotland. Then local autonomous grassroot campaign organisations (the Yes groups) can pick and choose the visions and policies that an Independent Scotland makes possible for their own particular communities and fight their referendum campaign on those best suited locally relevant and popular visions of Indy.

      No one is going to parachute in from central HQ and fight your referendum for you! They didn't last time and they won't this time. It is up to Yes activists to get organised and begin to develop effective narratives for Indy that will bring their own communities toward Yes. We are building a networking Platform to link all autonomous pro Indy groups to help one another do just that on a local, regional and national basis. Its called the National Yes Registry and the networking tool is the IndyApp. We have 108 groups on the platform already and are about to set out on our second national tour of the groups to get everyone logged in and able to communicate properly using it. For more detail on how the IndyApp functions and concept work read this link https://nationalyesregistry.scot/indyapp/crowd-fund-info/ and watch the user demo film on our website nationalyesregistry.scot

      No one organisation is going to hand you Independence Chalks. We need to get pro active, find our own communities vital interests in securing an independent Scotland and then get out there and get it discussed and understood by everyone through local campaigning. For that to happen, just like last time we NEED a real referendum campaign. We did it well last time and it worked! It will work again, only this time we will be organised enough as a grass-roots to get the extra 10% needed for victory.

      I urge all folk who want an Independent Scotland to get active in their local Indy group. Download the IndyApp Free at https://chuffed.org/project/indyapp to find and contact your local group and lets get properly organised!

      braco

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    6. The SNP has pivoted from rural Scotland to the central belt. But the problem with the central belt is that they want socialism, not necessarily an independent Scotland - and you now have Corbyn Labour as a seriously dangerous competitor in that regard.

      The SNP could end up with nothing eventually - kicked out of their rural heartland and rejected by the central belt lefties in favour of a better offer of 'free stuff'.

      Delete
  18. SUPPORT RUTH DAVIDSON

    If she can pressure the Tories to a soft Brexit then Indeyref2 is off the table.

    Independence is not the issue. What’s best for Scotland is the issue.

    ReplyDelete