Last week I said I would publish, via the Flag, at least the editorials in the printed Scots Independent  a month or so afterwards. This week I am publishing the one for November; I usually do the Flag over the Christmas period as other Compilers may wish to have a complete break from politics, but I am too old and set in my ways to change! FIRST MINISTER’S NEW YEAR MESSAGE Monday December 31, 2012 Referendum to bring new opportunities for Scots to make own choices The First Minister’s New Year message has highlighted the restoration of free higher education as an example of theRead More →

This is the October Editorial. As I watched First Minister’s Questions this week, the quote came to me “Oh what can ail thee knight-at-arms, alone and palely loitering”  I suppose it was looking at the Labour benches, who sat, in thrall, as in the poem, but definitely not enthralled, as their leader dragged them doggedly further and further into the mire. We had been expecting some sort of a fightback from the Unionists, making a case for staying in the Union, but this was a very strange way to introduce it, and it flies in the face of reality.  We have had five years ofRead More →

4 December, 2012 First Minister invites cross-party suggestions on press group Necessary for Scottish Parliament to act on self-regulation criteria – FM First Minister Alex Salmond today invited the main opposition parties to suggest suitable candidates to sit on the implementation group that he has proposed be set up to determine how self-regulation of the press can be recognised in Scots law following the Leveson report. Speaking at Holyrood, the First Minister said that whatever type of voluntary self-regulation model was devised by the press in the wake of Leveson, it was necessary for the Scottish Parliament to set the criteria by which any newRead More →

I was privileged to be at St Andrew’s House in Edinburgh this week and to see the arrival, and departure, of Prime Minister David Cameron and his entourage, all five cars of them.  Access to the public was denied to the street outside, with somewhere between twenty and thirty police on duty.  The most memorable moment of that event was when Michael Moore MP was going into St Andrew’s House and one of the assembled press called out “How does it feel to be the last Secretary of State for Scotland?”;  Mr Moore just carried on, but as I observed at the time, he wasRead More →

It was my “pleasure” to turn on the TV a couple of weeks ago to be regaled with the Chancellor of the Exchequer , George Osborne, waxing lyrical about the dangerous situation of independence.  Now I have nothing against the dinner suit and black tie, I have one myself, rarely worn these days, but the sight of this harbinger of doom pontificating on the perils of independence while being responsible for even greater dangers to the disunited kingdom bordered on the ridiculous.  That’s an understatement, it did not border on the ridiculous, it was ridiculous. Three things emanate from this episode;  the first is thatRead More →

Being of sound mind – well sometimes – I did not watch any of the fanfare of the opening of the Olympic Games, but the newspaper reports  reminded of a famous Scots quote of yesteryear, no doubt apochryphal: “Ah dinna ken if it was a wedding or a funeral – but it was a grand affair”. The other quote which sprang to mind, possibly more apt, was from the journalist Chris Baur  after the 1979 Referendum.  He said it was “the last kick of the dying horse”, a quote which will go down with Lord George Robertson’s one that a Scottish Parliament would “kill ScottishRead More →