Sunday, September 16, 2012

Alex Salmond booed, twice, but why don't we hear so much about it?

Yesterday, my wonderful niece Laura and her boyfriend John celebrated her 20th birthday by heading into Glasgow to see Scottish Olympians and Paralympians parade through the city. They had a great time, and were bursting with pride to see the likes of Sir Chris Hoy, Neil Faichie and Katherine Grainger honoured for their amazing performances in London.

There was another side to the event, though. Someone found that they weren't quite as popular as maybe they thought they were. Laura and John told me that Alex Salmond had been booed pretty heavily, both when introduced to the crowd and when he was making his speech.

If you believe the media, our First Minister enjoys unbridled, almost North Korean levels of popularity. Even after Friday's booing, there was very little to indicate that such an event had even taken place. The BBC touched on it and there was a wee bit in the Scotsman and that's about all I can see.

When I mentioned Friday's booing on Facebook, my friend Clair, who was there with her 3 children, said she reckoned it was around half the crowd who were booing. She's about as close to a neutral observer as you could find, as is my friend Morag, who added that Salmond had been booed at the Tattoo at Edinburgh Castle a few weeks ago.

Nationalists on the net were quick to dismiss the booing story. Ian MacQuarrie suggested it was no more than a "dozen Labour stooges" which would have worked with Clair's assessment if there had been 24, rather than 20,000 people there. Newsnet Scotland put it down to "Unionist Shame."
Quite why a gratuitous showing of disrespect by a section of a crowd towards Alex Salmond is worthy of reporting is not explained.
It's important to note that they weren't quite so quick to make the same conclusion of gratuitous disrespect when George Osborne and Tory ministers were booed at the Paralympics. Double standards, methinks.

The most bizarre comment to me came from Glasgow SNP Councillor Mhairi Hunter, who cited "inappropriate behaviour" by unionists.



My heart was in my mouth as I clicked on the link, fearful that I was going to find out that some unionist idiots had beaten up some nationalists. But there was no violence, or intimidation. Apparently it's inappropriate to hand out Union Jacks for free to people. To claim such a thing as in appropriate is ridiculous. All campaigns hand out various items of tat to people and Yes Scotland is no exception, nor is the SNP itself. Handing out Union Jacks to celebrate the success of Team GB athletes is hardly sedition. It's nowhere near the charming bunch of people Salmond was intending to share a platform with at an independence rally next week. The Scottish Republican Socialist Movement advocate violence to achieve their aims:
Because the ruling class will not relinquish power without their use of armed force, this revolution will be a time of violence as well as liberation. Unions by their very nature cannot become vehicles for the revolutionary transformation of society. 
Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said:

For months the SNP have been more than happy to receive support from these extreme groups with their menacing message. This just shows the ragtag company Alex Salmond is prepared to keep to split Scotland from the UK.
This group wanted to violently smash up society as we know it in order to achieve  independence. What other unwanted groups have the SNP attracted to their campaign?

It just shows how sensitive the SNP is to any kind of criticism. They really don't like it up 'em, as Corporal Jones would say.

Alex Salmond's misjudging of the public mood on the Olympics, with constant complaints about the cost - and then spending the equivalent of a nurse's salary every day needlessly hiring a venue to turn into Scotland House when it could have had Dover House for free. His talk of being proud of Scolympians seemed mean spirited. I mean, are we supposed to be proud of Katherine Grainger and not the other woman on her team, Anna Watkins, because she comes from Leek?  Even this week he was blaming Scottish unemployment on the Olympics.

 That's before you even start on the referendum jiggery-pokery and spending even more of our hard earned taxes challenging the Information Commissioner's ruling that the SNP Government should be open about the legal advice it's getting on independence.

It was absolutely no surprise to see George Osborne booed at the Paralympics. Pictures and video of the event went viral in minutes. We didn't see the same thing with Salmond on Friday in the mainstream media. That just doesn't seem right, especially when social networking means that observers can tell what they see.

What's clear is that the shine is certainly starting to come off Alex Salmond and the SNP. During their first term, they barely talked about independence and they only mentioned it when it was brought up in the 2011 Holyrood campaign. They've focused on little else since then, sadly, spending more time on that than on what they were actually elected to do, run Scotland's public services like housing, children's services and health. They've slashed funding for social housing, there are worrying signs of problems in the health service - I mean, how can it be right for 27 people to die of totally preventable bed sores, as Liberal Democrat MSP Alison McInnes pointed out recently?

The more the SNP talk about independence like it's the only thing on earth that matters, the less people like them, it seems.

Nicola Sturgeon has her work cut out for her over the next few years if she is to persuade us that independence is a safe option for Scotland. Her colleagues, with their assertions that handing out union jacks is somehow inappropriate, with their insistence on secrecy on issues that could give us clarity and on making life more difficult for ordinary Scots aren't really helping.

34 comments:

Munguin said...

I was also there Caron and I can assure you it was not half the crowd by any stretch of the imagination. In fact it did seem to be staged by certain elements and continued as harmless ribbing because Alex is a Hearts fan. But never let the facts get in the way of you blowing something out of all proportion. You it seems are the only Unionist to feel the moral duty to inform (or misinform) your readers of this. I see that despite their visceral hatred of Alex and the SNP none of the MSN has made this into the Broadway musical that you have! So well done once again Caron for plummeting to all new lows of journalistic sludge!

Frank H Little said...

Dear Leader Kim Al Ex - I like it!

Munguin said...

Oh and Caron Alex's personal approval rating is plus 13 (down from a maximum of plus 33). No doubt as a result of all the Olympic and Jubilee flag waving and Great British grandstanding. Oh and also all those unpopular policies that the SNP wont (like the Lib Dems) go back on or sweep under the carpet (like equal marriage, tuition fees, political reform and minimum pricing). But not by any stretch of the imagination the disaster you might think. More like a blip along the way and not an altogether unexpected one at that. What did you expect with the sickening glut of union jack waving and pro-British tweeting?

Let's compare that to one Nick Clegg whos approval rating was a maximum of plus 53 in early 2010....what’s it now? Well it’s minus 59. So if Alex got booed what would have happened to Nick? That I suppose is what happens when signed pledges are put in dustbins in order to secure deals with the Devil. Who has fallen furthest Caron? And what party will still exist after 2015?

Munguin said...

On a side matter Caron. Why is it acceptable for you to make comparisons between Alex Salmond’s Scotland and a North Korean Dictatorship where millions are starving? I thought you were against disrespectful similes like that? Did you not make one of your famous three ringed circuses out of a harmless simile that Pete Wishart made between Mike Moore and the panda’s at Edinburgh zoo? You branded Pete a cybernat and were practically frothing with self-righteous indignation over that one.

Do you think that comparing Alex to a bloodthirsty tyrant that is happy to kill and oppress is better than one that compares Mike to a cuddly and lovable animal? Or is it just a question of being ok for you but not for then? Hypocrisy!

cynicalHighlander said...

Union Jacked coupled with better together's campaign embracing the OO is it any wonder there were a few loud mouths venting as hooligans do. I believe some of the tweeters got gay close to jumping the gun in reporting the preplanned event.

Munguin said...

Oh Caron sorry for all these comments. I do hope you have not gone into "not seeing them" mode but there appears to be one missing. I thought I would point that out to you now and not wait for the usual four days.

Caron Lindsay said...

Munguin

I wasn't there, unlike you, but people I love and trust, who are neutral observers in the independence debate, told me this - and their version seems to be backed up on Twitter.

I didn't ever say Salmond was like Kim Jong Il, just that he has previously enjoyed huge popularity and never seems to have had much in the way of bad stuff stick to him - until now.

I've used the same phrase about Vince Cable in the past - and we all know how much I adore him.

Let me go and see what I've missed....

Caron Lindsay said...

Explain to me how the Lib Dems have gone back on Equal Marriage? Legislation is planned - and the language on it is pretty firm. I see no obstacles.

And what's the problem with backing the SNP on minimum pricing? I think that was a pretty constructive change for Willie to make.

Political reform - couldn't be put through the House of Commons because the two conservative parties wouldn't vote for it or for a programme to get it through. Nick Clegg asked Ed Miliband what he would agree to in terms of the Programme Motion and Miliband refused to say.

"Sickening glut of union jack waving"

Only sickening to Nationalists because so many Scots really got into the Olympics. Doesn't bode that well for your referendum at the moment, does it?

Galen10 said...

Caron, I honestly love your talent for re-writing history; it's comedy gold, truly! Not content with trying (vainly) to whip up the Lib Dem cadres into a froth of righteous indifference about some honestly pretty harmless comments about Michael Moore (for whom you seem to have assumed the lonely role of cheerleader in chief), you now try and misrepresent some limited boo-ing of Big Eck by some Unionists placemen as some devastating take down of nationalism and all its works.

Oh, purleez! Do get a grip.

I have no particular axe to grind in favour of the SNP, or their leader, as I don't support either, but it is worth bearing in mind that Dave, Gideon, Nick and whichever nobody is in charge of the rump LD's in Scotland these days, can only dream of the kind of approval ratings currently enjoyed by Salmond or his party.

The thing is Caron, the booing of Gideon and Call-me-Dave (as well as the cheering of that buffoon Boris) is partly tongue in cheek, BUT also partly a response to the the huge popular concern over their failed policies. Same goes for the booing of the crypto-Tory Ed Balls.

Unlike the Scottish government, the Coalition is not trusted, and is not seen to be protecting people, particularly the vulnerable. The recent re-shuffle has moved the cabinet firmly to the right, which bodes even worse for the remainder of this parliament, where we now have a health secretary who believes in homeopathy, and is a confirmed fan-boy of the Murdoch's, a transport secretary with a fear of flying, and a justice secretary who approves of bigotry towards gay coupes, and no Lib Dem cabinet minsters in the department of Defence, which will no doubt allow the Tories to push on with Trident replacement.

Well done Lib Dems... way to forget the big issues and concentrate on the non-story of a few nutters booing Big Eck!

Galen10

Galen10 said...

"Only sickening to Nationalists because so many Scots really got into the Olympics. Doesn't bode that well for your referendum at the moment, does it?"

Really.. you honestly think that enthusiasm for UK success at the Olympics will translate into anti-independence sentiment and votes 24 months from now?

If you honestly believe that, I have some magic beans and a bridge you might be interested in buying?

I was happy to see the success at the Olympics, especially for Scottish athletes... I thought the event was great.. a real credit to all of us... BUT it will have absolutely no impact on how I feel about independence, and I suspect the same will be true for the overwhelming majority of voters.

The task for both the YES and NO campaigns over the next 24 months is to convince the block of undecided voters to go their way. "Around" 30% are probably pretty firmly in each camp.

If I were you, I would also be careful about relying on predictions and polls this far out from 2014.... everyone thought Scottish Labour had the last Holyrood election pretty much won I seem to recall, even quite close to the date..... how did that one work out for them again?

A whole lot can happen in 2 years; events, economics, and the tenor and quality of the debate will all have an impact, and are unlikely to be uniformly in favour of EITHER side.

What we haven't seen much evidence of so far is how the dependency parties are going to deliver the kind of Scotland (or indeed UK) that people want. I for one won't be holding my breath based on their form since 2010.

Galen10

Caron Lindsay said...

Well, it's the SNP who's trying to sell the magic beans and a bridge - crossing fingers and saying it'll be fine when there's no evidence to back that up - currency, and EU being just two issues which come to mind.

The idiocy over defying the Information Commissioner does nothing else but make the Government look like it's trying to hide something even it if's not.

And, Galen, the word nutter is not a nice word. And to use it to describe people who booed the First Minister is pretty unpleasant.

Anonymous said...

Well said. I too ahd been thinking about the North Korean similarity.

Helen _of_troy

Munguin said...

Ah well your colleague at a Scottish Liberal seems to substantiate my version of events. So it seems to be horses for courses. Whatever it is Caron it is certainly not the end of Alex Salmond as we know it like you are trying to show in your biased article.


Did Kim Jong Ill enjoy huge popularity Caron? Or is it just an act put on because they are all in fear? I always thought it was the latter. And that your implication was, therefore, that Alex’s popularity was somehow orchestrated and not genuine. And the fact that we know it is genuine makes your attempt to belittle it all the more small minded.


Whether you used the phrase on Vince Cable is neither here nor there. Personally I can’t see where you would use it as St Vince’s halo slipped off a long time ago, more popular than Nick Clegg yes, but then so is Kim Jong Ill (and he’s dead). I was pointing out to you that you employ similes of considerably more dubious merit than some who you roundly condemned when they employed much gentler ones. I see your gambit on this is that its OK I used it on Vince Cable before!

Galen10 said...

Oh come now, for every Unionist scare story about the sky falling down in the event of a YES vote in 2014 there is a reasonable response. Not only that of course, but the it is not as if the Unionists constantly insisting that supporters of independence provide chapter and verse on every policy area, and a detailed plan for every eventuality post 2014, are inclined to do the same is it?

For all the promises of jam tomorrow from the dependency parties, what do we know about when the jam will be delivered, what flavour it will be and how much we will get? The answer of course is that they don't know, because even if they could come up with a coherent plan for more devolution they could all agree too it, they have no chance whatsoever of getting them through Westminster.

The question of EU membership is a red-herring being pedalled by unionists (with the support of some abroad e.g. Spain opposed to independence for areas like Catalonia) because it suits their interests to do so. It will be up to the Scottish people to decide whether being in the EU is a good thing or not... there are arguments both ways. I've always been a pro-European, but who knows what the situation will be in 2014. No sensible commentators think it will be an issue, because the rest of the EU won't LET it be an issue just to please frothing Tories and Spanish centralists.

The smart money supports the view that both successor states will be in the EU (the most likely alternative is that NEITHER would be considered members, as the UK would have ceased to exist) in which case both parties would have to re-apply.

Same goes for currency; it is in the interests of the rumpUK to have a stable sterling area, and they aren't going to shoot themselves in the foot. However, I'd defintely prefer to see an independent Scotland have its own currency ASAP. There are however plenty of precedents of newly independent states having their currencies tied to other currencies, officially and unofficially.... another Unionist scare story.

And how about defence..? Another area where huge savings could be made, where we wouldn't have to have WMD's on the Clyde, and where the current defence and security provision for Scotland is so laughably inadequate, that the Russina navy can anchor in the Moray Firth with impunity, because the nearest RN destroyer in is Portsmouth!! Funnily enough, the Russians had left way before the RN arrived. And yet, the Unionists insist that we will be defenceless, that all the clyde shipyards will close, the Americans will ostracise us, NATO will kick us out.... the list goes on. One Tory MP even floated the mad cap trial balloon that a future rumpUK government might be forced to bomb Scottish air bases if they fell into the wrong hands. Better together my eye!

If you feel "nutter" is too strong a word, I'd suggest you've probably led a sheltered existence Caron. I for one don't think booing your political opponents of whatever hue is an indication that you are balanced (ok, ok, I'd make an exception for Boris, cos he really NEEDS to be booed, but the NUTTERS who elected him and other actually cheer the deeply unpleasant buffoonish principle void.... oh the times, oh the morals!).

I'd say nutter is pretty tame, but have it your own way.

I defintely think using the Kim Il Sung reference is probably worse, as is your (frankly unbelievable) viewpoint that the mainstream media would not totally go t town on this story if it had any legs at all. you must be one of the few people who actually seem to think the MSM in Scotland are anything but irredeemably biased against the SNP as a party, and independence as a concept, as they have demonstrated time and again both in print and on the air.

Galen10

Munguin said...

Caron according to Nick Clegg equal marriage has been achieved. How convenient that you have the Tories to blame for not actually getting an of the things you tell us all that you have achieved....errr....actually achieved. When you don’t get equal marriage because of the Tory awkward squad, then it will become one of the many things that have been brushed under the carpet. You know like those other planks of political reform like House of Lords reform, sacking MPs the things Nick Clegg dubbed “new politics” but then went quiet about when he did not achieve any of them. That is what I mean by sweeping under the carpet and as for the going back part. Do I need to remind you of that pledge all your MPs signed regarding tuition fees? Does that count as going back?

As for the “sickening glut of union jack waving” and it not looking well for our referendum. On the contrary Caron the referendum is over two years away. People have short memories and when they get back to just how crap and awful thing are in the United Kingdom they will soon forget all the phoney tinsel that made them feel good about the UK for a few weeks. And look what a good start the UK has made on it already, with us finding out that there was a huge cover up involving the police, press and UK government over the Hillsborough disaster. That make you proud to be British does it? And let’s face it, it wont be long before the others sectors of this Great British pig sty fall into line, and with the tacit (or otherwise) complicity of the Lib Dems too. Get much of an Olympic lift in the polls did you Caron! No? Wonder why!

Caron Lindsay said...

Munguin,

The events of the last few days,with Salmond being booed at the Olympic Parade and also at the Tattoo which other (non political) friends of mine witnessed, it's clear that he can't claim to have the universal admiration he appeared to think he had a year ago.

Since then, he's shown his true colours by playing down phone hacking and hanging around with Murdoch, picking fights with the Supreme Court and insulting senior judges. He's done himself no favours.

Equal marriage south of the border will happen - they are just slightly behind us. Their consultation finished in June, ours last December. I expect there to be leglislation in next year's Queen's Speech.

Munguin said...

Whoever claimed that Alex had universal acclaim? I’m sure Alex didn’t and I know that I haven’t. All I am saying is he is popular and that it is ridiculous for you to try to say otherwise. The numbers speak for themselves. So a few disgruntled pro-brits booed him, hardly earth shattering is it and not unexpected either.

It’s nice to have confidence. Were you not confident that we would get Lords reform? Or AV? Was Nick not confident that he would get his “new politics”? On the one hand you make the excuse that the Tory (and Labour) awkward squad prevented you from getting your “achievements” and then you seem to ignore the fact that they are still there and determined to quash your equal marriage must have.

Galen10 said...

Caron,

What can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.

Where is the evidence that Alex Salmond appeared to think he enjoyed universal admiration? However high an opinion he may have of himself, I doubt he's ever been unaware that there are many people who dislike him and all he stands for, many who actually hate him, and others who are fairly neutral to him.

As other have rightly pointed out however, you can't (however hard you try) argue with the consistent approval ratings both Salmond and his government have enjoyed, or fail to find your own leaders, party and coalition wanting by the same light.

Salmond was right to pick a fight with the Supreme Court, whose pretensions vis a vis Scots law should be avoided and fought if we don't wish to see it subjugated to the interests of a deeply corrupt unionist establishment.

His relationship with Murdoch is pretty thin gruel in comparison to the toadying exhibited by both Labour and Tories... and lets us not forget it was your favourite Uncle Vince who almost mucked things up in relation to the Murdoch's with his inability to keep his mouth shut so he could impress some attractive young journalists posing as voters. Only the fact Murdoch's empire imploded stopped Hunt handing them BskyB on a plate, so I doubt Eck and the SNP will be taking many lessons from the LD's on relations with the press.

Equal marriage MIGHT happen south of the border if Clegg has actually grown a pair at last to make it enough of an issue... but it isn't in the bag yet, and given the deeply repugnant cast of many Tories in relation to such issues, there is no guarantee they will sit by and let it through if it presents an opportunity to give the LD's a good kicking for , just as an example, stopping boundary reform.

Galen10

Peter A Bell said...

"If you believe the media, our First Minister enjoys unbridled, almost North Korean levels of popularity."

Really? Want to show us an example of this? It only counts if others can see it.

cynicalHighlander said...

comment.

I spoke to a freelance cameraman who was working for the Beeb. He said that they, the crew and other journos present were aware that the booing was contrived and obviously organised and that they, therefore, ignored it as a story line.

My emphasis and as you wish to be saddled to a corrupt system of government in the Westminster establishment then I wish you well but Scotland will be voting for Independence in 2014 and any smearing by the better together will not stop the inevitable.

Opitmo said...

Salmond is like the childrens story the Emporars New Clothes.

Whatever he says or the SNP propose their supporters back and do not question. There is no real debate or disagreement with the ranks of the cybernats.

It's independence at any cost.

Don't let Sturgeon being pushed to the front of the independence campaign to fool you. She's nothing more than a puppet.

Anything which highlights what the SNP believe is factually incorrect is largely ignore by them or dismissed.

Either that or buried in legal red tape.

So this week Sillars comes out with the lack of discussion within the SNP, President of the EU maintains new countries would have to apply for EU membership, and Bulgaria have said they will take legal action against the minimum price of alcohol in Scotland as it's restaint of trade.

It's amazing how things are reported when you travel outwith Scotland and the UK through the smaller new channels.

Vote independence and Scotland still won't be able to compete with places like Eastern Europe, India, and China who have salaries around a quarter or less of what people in Scotland expect to be paid and have a higher standard of living. Benefits are more in Scotland than some of these salaries.

Who pays?

Martin said...

The SNP hero worshipping of Salmond is profoundly disturbing for political debate in Scotland. Everything is turned into defending Big Brother's personal reputation as if he was unable to do put a foot wrong - and that everyone else is misguided in not appreciating his pompous empty self glorification. It is especially worrying that STV and other media have fallen into the belief that it is unacceptable to be critical of the First Minister. The SNP have one policy and one face - separation and Salmond. They are not interested in the real issues.

Munguin said...

Jim Sillars is, as we know, as disgruntled would be SNP leader whose machinations to that end came to nought. And who now lends himself to the unionistas as a one man ex SNP awkward squad and provider of rent-a-quotes. Usually without substance or thought. I’m afraid that is a fact.

Also did Mr Barossa not later say that he mis-spoke?

Did we not always expect some other member of the EU to challenge minimum pricing? I thought it would be France myself! Besides is that not, as Caron says, a policy now adopted by Willie Rennie. And further its one being mooted south of the border as well? It is amazing the things that are reported here in Scotland, if you have an open mind and are prepared to listen. Oh and the internet serves so much better for news gathering than travel outside Scotland I find.

Is there also not currently disagreement within the ranks of the SNP regarding both Scotland’s being in Nato and regarding equal marriage itself? Hardly the monolithic debate quashing behemoth that some would have us believe. Informed debate is only that if it can recognise the salient facts and not skate over them for a sensationalist article or trite comment.

Optimo said...

No Barossa wasn't misquoted or misinterpreted. He simply stated with regards to independence in Catalona they would have to apply to the EU for membership like any other newly independent country.

When word reached the Scottish Government of this they wanted clarification. At no time has the EU or Barossa backtracked on his comments. So you can apply the same logic to Scotland too. But then again most intelligent people assumed it wouldn't be so easy as Herr Salmond was making out to continue in the EU.

As for minimum pricing of booze. This particular policy is doomed to failure as it gives the drinks manufacturers and industry an excuse to hike the price of their products and keep the excess profit. The excess profits is already being ploughed into R&D and continuous improvement of manufacturing facilities and the distribution network. It's not a tax like say increasing duty. By increasing duty you guarantee the money is directed back to the Government to pay for essential services.

The SNP Government policy on booze seems at odds with it's investment strategy of awarding brewers like Brew Dog grants transfer manufacturing facilities to Ellon and new production lines.... Add in another few distilleries to the mix getting funding too.

So that brings us to NATO and getting rid of WMD's. By leaving NATO and getting rid of WMDs you close down the facilities and industries in Scotland uses to maintain the facilities. You also close down and restrict the R&D payments being made to universities and science sector too. No facilities means no investment.

Salmond and the SNP are not daft and they know their current policies are not a vote winner. So do the rest of the cybernats who know by sticking to this policy will result in a no vote.

Do you think the people of Scotland are going to stand by and watch highly skilled and highly paid jobs be transferred elsewhere?

Oh and may I mention Germany have back tracked on removing WMD's from it's country. What's makes you think Scotland would be successful in doing this when Germany can't? Delusion?

Like I said, independence at any cost even if it means backtracking on long established policies on nuclear and defence. I can't see too many cybernats kicking up a fuss and will fall into line behind Salmond so they do not rock the boat before the independence vote.

Galen10 said...

@optimo

Sorry, you really can't get away with that line in relation to Barosso's comments.

They have (stun us with another) been seized upon by the Unionists in the UK, and the Spanish government, to support their view that in the event of independence the newly independent state would have to re-apply for membership of the EU.

However, the EU authorities have been busily backtracking ever since Barosso's comments. There is no direct precedent for part of an existing state in the EU declaring itself independent; neither of the two partiall analogous situations (Greenland and two small French islands in the Carribean which wanted to cut ties with Guadeloupe) support the Unionist view.

The smart money constitutionally / legally is that the EU's own legal advice will find that in the event of Scotland (or Catalonia) becoming independent, they will remain part of the EU.

An EU spokesman has already said that the comments made had been misinterprested, and that they would not interfere in the internal affairs of member states. There is no mechanism or process for countries to leave the EU (probably because they never thought anyone would!), so each situation would have to be judged on its individual merits.

The EU have been careful to say that even if they were forced to take a position in relation to one situation (say Catalonia), that would not necessarily apply to any other situation.

It is even possible that in the event of Scottish independence, the EU would expect both Scotland and rumpUK to formally re-apply for membership on the basis that the existing party no longer exists.

Of course there will have to be negotiations, because e.g. the number of Scottish MP's in the European parliament would have to be increased. There is even speculation as to whether it would require unanimity from the "existing" members, or a qualified majority... so even scare stories about the Spaniards trying to block Scottish "membership" have to be seen for what they are.

Munguin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Munguin said...

Optimo: So Barossa did not actually say that Scotland would have to apply for membership like a new entry state? Is that right? As you say new members would have to apply in the normal way but Scotland is not a new member is it? We had a referendum on the common market (the precursor of the EU) in which Scotland said “yes” and we have been a member ever since. As I understand you Barossa went on to qualify what he said was actually in reference to Catalonia. So to recap Scotland is not a “new country” whereas Catalonia would be and its not relevant anyway because Barossa was talking about what is currently what the Spanish describe as an “autonomous community”. So I’m failing to see the relevance of your point! Perhaps to illustrate it you could provide a reference, so that I don’t have to simply rely on your word.


It was expected that minimum pricing would be challenged. But it is also accepted that something must be done about Scotland’s alcohol crisis. This has now been accepted by other parties and is being pressed for in England to. So I fail to see the point you are trying to make against Herr Salmond.


I used NATO to illustrate to you that there is in fact debate in the SNP and it’s not full of nodding apparatchiks as you seem to think. That’s all, I was not inviting a discussion on the wider merits of WMDs. To do so with you I think would be a pointless waste of time, so I will stick with my original contention that it serves to illustrate that debate within the SNP is, contrary to your assertions, alive and well.


I see that now you are contending that the healthy debate you criticised the SNP for not having a moment ago is now illustrative of a single minded ditching of long held beliefs in order to obtain independence. Talk about mixed messages.

Optimo said...

Yes you are right Galen10.

The original comments came from Olivier Bailly who is an EU spokesmen. Barosso came in a few days later and clarified the comments that new countries to the EU would have to re-apply.

But then again I am not sitting in Scotland currently. I haven't been in Scotland since March. I am sat in Central Europe where Barosso has been interviewed on several English lanaguage news channels and there no real misunderstanding from me on what he said and what he was implying. Catalonia and the big demostrations are big news.

So it really depends on how much SNP spin you would like to put on the word 'new'. Catalonia is a region in Spain right? So not a new country but part of an exisitng country who are part of the EU.

Just like Scotland are part of the UK who are members of the EU also.

While you are at it, you may want to explain why the Information Commissioner in Scotland is taking the Scottish Government to court to establish the legal advice given on EU membership.

So you wonder what the SNP Goverment have infact got to hide?

Munguin - My comments are a pointless waste of time on you. No doubt you have been brought up in the dogma of independence at any cost regardless of whether or not it is the right thing to do for the Scottish people.

I have yet to hear any credible arguments for becoming independent or hard facts to back up why we would be better of.

Like I said, independence at any cost even if it means backtracking on long established policies on nuclear and defence. I can't see too many cybernats kicking up a fuss and will fall into line behind Salmond so they do not rock the boat before the independence vote.

The problem with Salmond and the SNP in Scotland is they are the best of an extremely bad lot. They have no real credible opposition and the Scottish people are sleep walking into independence without knowing the facts.

When the facts become clear the SNP will play the victim and it will be everyones else fault.

I suspect the Conservatives and Lib Dems down south could not care less if Scotland goes it alone. It's not like either of them have a big support in Scotland. It may work out well for them when the numerous armed forces, nuclear, R&D, and Government jobs servicing the whole of the UK get transferred over the border re-generating deprived areas in the north.

The oil money is at a break even situation. Scotland would have to take it's share of the UK national debt. The list of reason why the UK Government would want Scotland to go it alone are endless.

I see AG Barr are the latest in a long line of Scottish companies to disappear into the hands of 'foreign' owners.

I suppose we can always work in tourism, whats left of local Government, or the retail sector.

The SNP have had the policy all along of divide and conquer. Let's give everyone in Scotland free prescriptions, free uni places, free nursery education, council tax freezes, and throw in a bridge. Let's annoy the rest of the UK. Did you ever stop to think who pays for all of this post independence?

I am sure the SNP and cybernats will continue to blame what's left of the UK of all our ills, lack of progress, and economy which has disappeared down the toilet.

Do you really think the vast majority of Scot care about equal marriage during the middle of a recession and unemployment figures higher than the rest of the UK? What's the SNP Government doing about these issues? 4 years down the line blaming everyone else like they usually do?

I am sure talking about approval ratings, whether we should have a 2 questions referendum, and someone waving a union jack at the olympics is top of everyones priority list.


Diana said...

"The problem with Salmond and the SNP in Scotland is they are the best of an extremely bad lot."


In that case, the Unionists deserve to lose and the Union deserves to die - if the SNP are the best (relatively).


I don't like Alex Salmond.

But Lamont, Davidson and Willie Rennie are all a joke - complete and utter lightweights.

Munguin said...

Optimo: for comments that are a waste of time when addressed to one so narrow minded and spoon fed on SNP dogma as me you are certainly nothing if not garrulous and a trifle long winded. In addition it’s rather difficult to follow the tangential nature of you discussion. Reminiscent in many ways of a butterfly that flits from bloom to bloom taking a sip here and there but never drinking deeply. You provide a fascinating list of erherm “facts” but none of which you bother to substantiate. As you didn’t bother to address any of what I said I will be happy to return the favour and ignore your assertions. What would be the point anyway!

Optimo said...

Munguin -

Sorry I thought I was posting on an internet blog not creating a Thesis where I have to cross reference and substantiate my opinions and conclusions.

It's not really my problem you can't carry out some basic research on Google or the Scottish media choose not to show interviews.

I see you have arrived at the rabid cybernat position of playing the victim, deflecting and denying the facts, dropping in a few big words to make you sound smart and intelligent on a forum but having no real fact or substance to your post.

Typical of the vast amount of 'media' or 'political' forums/blogs in Scotland where the same users names pop up time and again. The same folk who can't put up a decent factual argument when challanged. It's always a mixture of personal opinion and SNP spin of what might happen or what we could do if we had, this that, and the other.

My posts clearly explain where the facts have come from and gone into detail on a few issues mentioned by you and other SNP supporters.

I haven't addressed what you have written? I am sure other posters on here can read what I have written and judge for themselves the facts.

Like I have said 'The Emporars New Clothes' Mr Salmond you look wonderful in your new suit. What do you mean our policies and opinion are being challanged by the EU and in court? Oh let's just ignore them as they don't know what they are talking about.

Meantime the SNP flip flop and prime their supporters for yet another policy shift so that they can secure independence at any cost!

Munguin said...

Optimo: I’m sorry you think it’s unreasonable that someone should dare to ask you to substantiate your so called “facts”. But then who is playing the victim now? The fact is you provide no exemplars of where you get your unsubstantiated arguments from, while at the same time ignoring me when I point out the hole in what you say. Allow me to demonstrate:

You say that the SNP leadership does not allow rank and file discussions.

I point out that in fact the SNP is having an internal discussion on NATO and equal marriage at the moment.

You launch into an unrelated speech on WMDs and then conclude by reaffirming your original assertion while totally ignoring my point.

I do hope you are beginning to see what a discussion that has examples is. I certainly never thought you were providing a thesis but I do expect some form of example at least. What you say is more in the way of a one sided speech that ignores any argument but your own. You strike me as the kind of person who is always right even when you are wrong.

As for your saying I am acting like a victim. Well that is simply preposterous. As is your claiming that I pepper what I say with big words in order to appear clever. I’m assuming that it is my name that you claim crops up all the time on Scottish blogs with no decent factual argument but just a load of big words. Are you sure it’s me that is claiming to be a victim and not you? I am totally comfortable with the use of these words but if you want me to dumb things down for you I can.

Big Eck said...

If you need a little break from the heavy seriousness of the independence debate, enjoy this funny video which is a comic look at the referendum but takes no position on either side of the argument. It's just for fun (and you can enjoy Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon dancing, if nothing else!)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1uFF60kYMmg

Caron Lindsay said...

Brilliantly funny!

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