by Pete Wishart Who would have thought that five and a half years after losing a referendum on independence support is now edging over 50% and becoming a sustained majority? The resilience of the movement and the belief that this is unfinished business has endured and we are now at the point where we can almost touch out and reach our ambitions and move towards the reality of Scotland becoming an independent nation.  The Tories and unionists know they can’t beat us. The scent of decay in the union case is almost overwhelming and they know that they are approaching the endgame. Large numbers ofRead More →

“We need the SNP signed up to a Manifesto for Independence which they’ve been ‘persuaded’ to adopt by a united Yes movement” Just read that aloud and ask in which universe the SNP need to be persuaded on Independence. We’ve been knocking on doors, delivering leaflets and marching for in my case since 1967! The arrogance to think I need to be persuaded on Independence is the kind of attitude which turns me off and I find it hard to believe will persuade voters to see this as a serious contribution to the debate. Saw the above in a facebook post today. I have noRead More →

I am becoming increasingly disheartened at the lack of compassion, empathy and respect when it comes to debating some really sensitive issues online. Perhaps social media simply mirrors real life, or maybe it does bring out the worst in some. Either way, it almost certainly leads to an over-simplification of issues and debates. This may be why we are seeing so many ‘All Lives Matter’ posts in response to the Black Lives Matter campaign – one simple message being countered by another, because people haven’t taken the time to look at the many complex and nuanced messages behind the Black Lives Matter campaign. Of courseRead More →

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. NO! It’s just the most frustrating of times. But not just frustrating because we cannot go out and do all the little things we thought of as important just a few weeks ago. Is it really just a few weeks? Like going out for a walk or a drive just for the fun of it, like packing the camera bag and Toby in the car and seeing where we end up and what we can see when we get there. And we’re among the lucky ones! We have a decent sized garden whichRead More →

The new under-secretary of state for Scotland has been appointed. An English MP. Does this mean that he trusts no Scottish MPs, not even his own Tories? Watching things play out in the USA this past week my other half commented that some of the scenes were reminiscent of events in the 50s and 60s. My comment was that things are not too different in the UK at the moment. Class, Race and how much money you have still separates us. These things still determine what kind of life you will have. At the moment they are determining whether you live or die. Westminster hasRead More →

Barnard Castle.  For many years of my life, the name was synonymous with some of the top British swimmers of the 80s but never took up more than a fleeting thought.  Last year whilst on holiday, we found ourselves passing through it several times and upon seeing the name on the road sign on the first occasion,  I became quite excited as I “knew” it as swimming memories came flooding back in the same way that a piece of music can trigger long forgotten times.  Barnard Castle itself turned out to be quite picturesque; a small market town nestled in the shadow of an imposingRead More →

Well, I did not think I would be able to do another Flag, but here I am again. Since the last Flag I did, 3 Jan, my life has changed quite a bit; on 20th January I fell at a pedestrian crossing in Corstorphine.  I was picked up by a lady, Karen O’Shaughnessy, and the Pedestrian Crossing attendant. Mrs O’Shaughnessy kindly brought me home. My son took me to the Western  General Hospital who found I had a broken arm;  we also went to Edinburgh Royal and got a brain scan which was OK.  The next day I was taken in to the Western General. Read More →

Boris is back and don’t we know it. The blunderpuss of British politics just couldn’t help himself last week when he rushed to make a point to Keir Starmer at PMQs that he would be announcing the next stage of the lockdown management in a televised address to the nation. The civil service were not ready to publish plans and messaging strategy in four days, but that didn’t stop Boris. Message-testing was through a select focus group of right-leaning journalists; just an average representative sample population! The televised address was lifted straight from a Yes Prime Minister scene. Full of contradictory rhetoric: manna from heavenRead More →

I’m not normally one who looks too closely at the dental work on opinion poll gift horses. But, while the figures in the recent YouGov and Survation polls are hugely encouraging I would caution treating them with a fair bit of scepticism, at least for the moment. The prediction that 54% on first ballot and 45% on the second would vote SNP are great reading in the 6th week of the lockdown. Even more so after 13 years in office and some of the “Nick Robinson” reporting we have seen over the reactions to the Covid19 virus. I’m not too surprised that there has beenRead More →

My last blog piece was just as the schools were shut prematurely before the Easter holidays. That feels like ages ago now and the situation no longer feels strange; this is now normal, there are routines and adjustments and we have all just got on with it.  It has been interesting to see how each child has dealt with the changes – the eldest has always struggled with school and friendships so the lock down was a dream come true for him. His desire to work has not increased however and he needs a lot of support but it gets done with good marks andRead More →