You could be forgiven for thinking the Scottish Budget negotiations have gone awry. The first attempt to gain parliamentary approval failed to gain a majority. A second attempt has now been held but when the media invite went out for assembled hacks and snappers, it was to be during a visit by the Finance Cabinet Secretary, Derek Mackay, to Howdenhall Police Station. Was this a last minute public appearance before Derek entered the station to ‘assist police with their enquiries’? The mind boggled. A difficult week in a difficult time. A Scottish Budget that is at the mercy of smaller parties determined to secure concessionsRead More →

  Ma freen wis a big shoat gowfer Noo fawin doon tae an auld loafer Wha cam tae Bute tae retire the green Whaur he’d won the Bennie at seeventeen. Waaker Cup an Scottish Champ, Noo he shuffles aboot like ony tramp Wance he bate the Inglish, ten nane They looed the pro wha recitet poems fur thaim. Lit up their  wunnerfu lives at kenspeckle dinners An made them aw feel like gowfin winners. How borin, tae live yer lives Wi ten caurs up yer castle drive A bank o yer ain and fower ‘wives’!   But when he cam here, did he get askedRead More →

My interpretation of what I heard of Theresa May’s speech is this. You will be proud to be a backward looking failed British Empire. You will do as we tell you. We will shut our door to our European neighbours and be most unwelcoming to people from other lands. No matter how we treat others they will be glad to trade with us as we know we are the superior Nation. In the Great British Empire days we traipsed around the world riding rough shod over other countries. We told them how to live and to worship. We enslaved them and shipped them to farRead More →

As there have been a few weeks of no positive news from Scotland I have decided to share some of the things that are happening here with links to the full stories.   New hospitals and health centres due to open in 2017-18 Nearly £500 million of new healthcare facilities, including two new hospital buildings, are expected to open to patients in 2017-18. Funded through Scottish Government investment, these new NHS and local council facilities will provide patients across Scotland with treatment in purpose-built, 21st century settings. Ms Robison said: “As we enter a new year, it seems apt to reflect on the significant progress madeRead More →

As we head into 2017 with the half of the media rabbiting on about how much of a triumph we are going to have in May. The other half of the media keep up the recurring theme of the SNP poll figures are about to collapse. There are only two things we can be sure about. One is that the polling industry got it so badly wrong in so many cases in 2016. From the Scottish Elections through the Tory civil war which became Brexit to America failing the collective IQ test. They predicted, pontificated and pronounced to all and sundry; and they got itRead More →

It struck me the other day just how hard our SNP MPs are working, both at home and in that ‘mother’ of parliaments. The media have been doing their best to avoid any political news. Putting on the endless repeats over the festive period and shortening and shifting the news programmes has helped with this. I am now at the point of the festive season where I have to check with the newspaper to see what day it is.Totally feeling in limbo! Thanks to social media I managed to catch a few posts from some MPs and their staff. Right up to the end ofRead More →

It’s that time of year again when we say goodbye to the old year.  I have to admit it will be difficult to raise a toast to 2016.  Politically speaking it has been a roller-coaster ride with more downs than ups!   The highlight of course, was the SNP winning our third term in Government at Holyrood.  The team played a blinder and the electorate rewarded us yet again.   The low points however, vastly outweigh the highs.  Brexit – you all know what that means – it means Brexit?  Don’t worry – no one, least of all the Tory Government, knows what it meansRead More →

As we begin to approach the end of another year, I find myself reflecting on how the children have grown and matured over the months and how their priorities shift and their awareness deepens. They’ve always had it hard growing up in a politically engaged household and many times have been encouraged or coerced into attending meetings and helping at events. I have no doubt that many people disagreed with me when I involved them in what I was doing possibly thinking that I was indoctrinating them into my beliefs or forcing them to only see one political ideology but I would wholeheartedly disagree withRead More →

The Scots Independents Oliver Brown Award winner, Billy Kay, has now been recognised for his contribution to Scots at Na Trads -2016 Scotland’s Traditional Music Awards in Dundee. You can watch the speech on BBC Alba, BBC Alba for the next three weeks here (from 57.00 – ) Here is the text of his acceptance speech “Ladies an gentlemen. it gies me meikle pride an pleisure tae receive this honour on behauf o the scots speakin commun ity that nummers at least ane and a hauf million o ma fellae kintraemen an weemen. yet, oor leid is aften cried the bonnie broukit bairn / the beautiful neglected childRead More →