A Helot Society

by craig on September 30, 2014 in Uncategorized

So we are back with a vengeance to notions of the undeserving poor. Electronic cards are to ensure that the poor can only spend their benefits on basic necessities like food and clothing, and not on a lifestyle of alcohol and illegal drugs.

Having lived a rather spectacular life encompassing both ends of the social spectrum, I can state with utter conviction that consumption of illegal pleasure-giving stimulants is far higher among the very wealthy than among the very poor. The notion that only the rich should be allowed to have any enjoyment in life is deeply offensive. It is fine for the Bullingdon Club to get plastered on Krug and cocaine and smash up restaurants. That is all jolly japes and high spirits. For a desperate man to seek solace in four cans of Tennant’s strongest or a bottle of Buckfast is however a dreadful sin and sign of social irresponsibility.

The high streets of our poorest towns are strewn with betting shops, bargain booze outlets, pawnbrokers and payday lenders. For anybody to believe that state compulsion of the patrons is the answer to the problem is the ultimate counsel of despair. Forget giving people a better hope, a greater chance, more socially useful pleasures. Just ban the little solace they have now. We have a government which holds a large section of the population in contempt; which cannot imagine that given a different birth, these people might have been sitting next to them in the Bullingdon Club; in short, which has no notion whatsoever of human dignity.

This latest move against benefits claimants is consistent with the entire development of the modern British economy. High wage economies generate a self-sustaining high domestic demand which keeps the economy growing. Our three main political parties postulate a low wage economy, with a minimum wage below the level which can sustain a family. The low wage economy is defended as a guarantee of strong international competitiveness and thus export performance. In fact Britain’s low wage model is entirely different, and the vast majority of those on low wages have no relation to exports. What Britain has developed is a model where a thin layer at the top are on extremely high remuneration. This of course includes bankers and the financial services industry, but also through the cult of managerialism, CEOs and directors have vastly increased their remuneration. For the multiple between the highest and lowest paid in a company to be 70 – the cleaner on 15,000, the core level majority on 20,000 and the CEO on 3,000,000- is now absolutely routine.

Even the public sector is ruled by this pretence that executive work is harder, more stressful, more uniquely difficult than core work. Well, I have been an Ambassador and a barman, and I can tell you which was hardest work. University vice chancellors are on over 300,000. Local councils regularly have a score of people on over 100,000.

We have no media willing to take on the triumph of greed. The most “left wing” of British newspapers, the Guardian, pays its editor total remuneration of over half a million per year and “star” columnists 300,000, while exploiting interns and junior staff, and squandering 35 million pounds a year of C P Scott’s great endowment in losses – straight into its senior staff’s pockets.

Britain has developed a new kind of low wage economy – one where the bulk of those on low wages work to provide services to those on very, very high remuneration. In a sense it is very old. We have become a helot society. It should be stressed that low wage is a deliberate policy. There is absolutely no reason why those in work could not be paid more. The economy would not crash. In Norway the median wage of the lowest 10 percentile is over 20,000 pounds, while the multiple between the lowest ten percentile and the top ten percentile is less than one third what it is in Britain. The UK’s astonishing and accelerating wealth gap is a result of deliberate ideological policy, founded on a notion that those at the top are possessed of rare and extraordinary abilities – whereas in truth, in the UK more than anywhere, their main achievement was usually to be born into the right family.

The concomitant of that worship of the rich is the belief that money measures worth; that if you have a low income then you are scum. That is the attitude that underlies these benefit smart cards. It is truly disgusting.

The Rush to Violence

by craig on September 25, 2014 in Uncategorized

Between 4 and 20 August the Saudi Arabian government beheaded 19 people. Saudi Arabia, which has funded and armed ISIS from inception (initially with CIA support), is now bombing alongside the USA in Iraq and Syria.

Forget the war technology porn regularly being broadcast by western media, with those spectacular photos of missiles erupting from ships into the night sky. Those missiles and bombs eviscerate and maim innocents as well as combatants, children as well as terrorists. The West always first denies, then regrets, “collateral damage”. The propaganda can be laughable. During the invasion of Iraq I remember a news propaganda item about how a cruise missile can enter a specific window, being followed by the next item – the US had apologised to Syria for two missiles aimed at Iraq which had hit Syria by accident.

If we can accidentally bomb the Chinese Embassy in Serbia, we can – and do – hit civilian homes near the proposed target. Being eviscerated by a piece of flying shrapnel is no less terrible than being beheaded by a jihadist. Let us not pretend that our violence is somehow nicer. Children will be dying under our bombs soon.

Other than the two extraordinary crazed Nigerians, there have been no recent Islamic motivated terrorist attacks in the UK and even a slowdown in the propaganda of phoney attacks. This was a threat to the major financial interests of the security industry, in both its governmental and private branches.

There can be no greater nonsense than the idea that the Caliphate poses a direct threat to the UK. This is even more crazy than the claim that Saddam Hussein posed a threat to the UK. But by seeking to join in the bombing campaign, and initiating a new round of fake “anti-terror” arrests in London, the British government is doing everything it possibly can do to try to provoke terrorist violence on British streets. The interests of the security state are therefore secured. I am longing for somebody to explain to me the precise mechanism by which our bombing Islamic countries helps prevent terrorist incidents in the UK. The way it can provoke such incidents seems to me too obvious to need stating. Indeed it says a great deal for the wisdom and tolerance of Britain’s Muslim communities that it has not provoked more. They could teach government a great deal about the good sense of not resorting to violence to gratify passions and earn short term acclaim.

Bombing Is Good For You

by craig on September 23, 2014 in Uncategorized

If bombing a country really made it better, we would have made a paradise of Iraq by now. Instead it is a total disaster, with access to electricity, drinking water, education and health services all far worse than they were before we started bombing it. That is even without the growth of the Caliphate, or ISIS, a direct result first of our deposing Saddam and conniving in the intolerant Shia rule of Maliki, and then of our connivance in arming and funding anyone willing to fight Assad.

So now we are told we have to bomb Iraq yet again, and this time, finally, that will make it all better. There are two extraordinary contradictions in the British position.

1) The justification in international law given by the neo-cons for the current bombing of Iraq is that it is at the invitation of the government of Iraq. But simultaneously they propose to bomb Syria to attack the government of Syria. This is the most astonishing hypocrisy.

2) The Caliphate forces were encouraged and trained by the CIA initially. They continue to be massively financed from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States. In fact, the Caliphate is still funded to a massive degree from the very states who are currently bombing them alongside the United States – Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar and the UAE. It is the ruling families of those states which are attacking ISIS in an official capacity, who are financing ISIS in a private capacity. The BBC manages to avoid any mention of Saudi funding for ISIS. The interests of the City of London are, as always, the most important factor for the British establishment.

The security state here in the UK needs the “War on Terror” to justify its continued existence and the power and jobs of those who administer it. One thing that is certain to keep the conflict going, and thus keep the security state going, is for us to start bombing the Middle East again.

The right wing old crawler Menzies Campbell just came on the BBC to support British bombing. Stand by to see the Unionist parties united in neo-imperialist brotherhood.

The Future is Independent

by craig on September 23, 2014 in Uncategorized

Trident, Austerity and Dentures. Those are the key components of the Labour brand in Scotland. The unionists demographic is overwhelmingly old. Independence had a majority in every age group except the over 55s.

Unionism is not a factor of age in the sense that once people reach 55 they turn into Unionists. People over 55 were the only Unionist age group, because they are also the only age group which predominantly does not use social media, buys deadtree newspapers and watches the regular BBC news bulletins. They are also influenced by residual memories of Empire and Second World War (old Tories). They remember the days when banks were viewed as respectable institutions, when the Labour Party helped the poor rather than supported the rich, and when public figures were widely believed not to lie.

There are very few replacement adults coming along with those kind of beliefs. Unionism is dying out. That is why Jack Straw has launched an initiative to try to outlaw future secession (at the same time contradicting his own position on Kosovan independence against the will of Serbia). Straw as one of the architects of the Iraq War has a strong track record of causing violence that kills many people. His idea of blocking the constitutional road to independence would cause violence beyond doubt.

The high energy community campaign for independence needs no encouragement from me to keep going. There seems general agreement that the May 2015 UK general election provides an immediate campaigning focus. I agree with that, and will address it, but it is also important that we are not corralled purely into the institutional agenda when our great virtue is that we are unconfined and extra-institutional. So I suggest a second vital focus, and that is Trident. Opposition to Trident unites everybody. Let us launch a great movement of protest aimed at Trident, including demonstration and direct action, and let us invite those in the rest of the UK who also oppose Trident to join us in that campaign. This should be a priority.

On the Westminster elections, there seems immediate consensus we should have a single pro-independence candidate per constituency. I strongly support that. There will be difficulties on how to achieve it, and I hope these can be worked through quickly. Tommy Sheridan has suggested that everybody should support the existing SNP candidates, which is very self-denying of him. I see virtue in this. But the Yes campaign was very much wider than the SNP, and I think the momentum could much better be maintained if we start with a clean sheet and local Yes groups choose their candidates through an open selection protest – in which the SNP candidates are welcome to participate, as are Greens and SSP and Solidarity and individuals, and the people will decide.

This is not institutionally neat – there is no clear membership of Yes groups. It requires self-abnegation on the part of existing party candidates. It removes the power of men in suits to screen candidates for acceptability. But those are good things.

I described the independence movement as having a revolutionary spirit. We should nurture that, not try to hammer it into the shape of a regular political party. In the long term there are some very good ideas on a new kind of participative project from the Common Weal. In the short term we need to keep the spirit moving, and go with the flow,

What Did You Expect?

by craig on September 20, 2014 in Uncategorized

I have no sympathy at all for anybody who voted No on the grounds of the pledges by Brown, Miliband, Cameron and Clegg about constitutional change, and is now whingeing about the blatant dishonour of those pledges. I cannot understand how anybody could be so stupid as to have believed them, and yet have a brain capable of sparking respiration.

Labour is interested in losing no influence of Scottish Labour MPs on any UK or English matters. It wants greater powers to English metropolitan councils which are controlled by Labour – because that will give Labour careerists more jobs and access to contracts. Those are Labours “constitutional reform” goals. The Conservatives “constitutional reform” goals are to keep Scotland’s tax on oil revenues and tax on whisky coming to Westminster, while loading greater responsibilities but no more money on the Scottish parliament, and stopping Scottish MPs voting on English matters thus guaranteeing conservative apparatchiks continued jobs and access to contracts.

Both Tories and Labour want to keep the appalling corrupt and undemocratic House of Lords for its jobs for apparatchiks, access to contracts etc.

Nobody cares what the Lib Dems think anyway.

I ask again – what did you expect?

This is the collective wisdom of Andy Myles and myself, over an excellent mackerel breakfast at Nom De Plume.

Moving On For Social Justice

by craig on September 19, 2014 in Uncategorized

The referendum result is the loss of a chance to dispute the hegemony of the neo-con corporate elite in the international world. My heart is still bursting with pride that 45% of Scots – a people devoid of political autonomy for three hundred years – had the nerve, intellect and will to see through the avalanche of propaganda from the entire mainstream media, political establishment, banking sector and corporate world. I met numerous voters who had received letters from their employers – including Diageo, BP, RNS and many others – telling them to vote No or their job was in danger. I met the old lady in Dundee who was told by the Labour Party that independent Scotland would flood the country with immigrants, and a Romanian building worker in Edinburgh who had been told by the Labour Party that Independent Scotland would deport all East Europeans.

Yesterday the Daily Telegraph, Daily Express and Daily Mirror in Scotland all had precisely the same full page photo on their front cover – not a startling news snap, but an arty concoction of male silhouettes and union and Scottish flags. The Mirror had photoshopped it to remove the blue from the union jack, but it was the same distinctive photo. There could be no more stark example of the fake diversity of the mainstream media.

Just as the Conservative, Labour and Lib Dem parties have been startlingly shown up as precisely the same creatures of corporate masters offering no policy differences whatsoever, merely a false tribalism. As they partied together at Better Together last night – the only party in the whole of Scotland, at which everybody present lives very, very well at taxpayers’ expense – it was impossible to tell which brand of Tory was which.

Keeping the popular momentum going, keeping all those wonderful people I met and spoke to engaged in trying to engineer a different society, is going to be a hard struggle. But we always knew that. The goal of independence must remain as a powerful unifying factor.

Through media onslaught people were convinced that a No vote was a vote for Devo Max. Actually after a fortnight of pontificating it will fall off the news agenda of the mainstream. Nothing significant will happen. The Westminster view is that we can have any powers we want at our glorified council in Scotland as long as we still don’t get the revenue from oil or whisky – and still provide cannon fodder for neo-con wars abroad, house Trident and are subject to draconian Westminster imposed attacks on civil liberties.

Anyway the dress rehearsal is over. At the next referendum – which is only five years away, after the UK has voted to leave the EU – we will not be putting forward Salmond’s Independence Lite, (I am not criticising, he carried it superhumanly far). We will be proposing a fully independent Scottish Republic, out of NATO, with its own currency, sweeping land reform to give Scotland’s land back to its people, nationalisation of railways and public utilities, a genuine minimum wage you can live on, a humane benefits system and strict regulation and controls on banks and bankers.

I am eating an excellent lunch and looking forward to it.

A Hard Night

by craig on September 19, 2014 in Uncategorized

I can’t pretend not to have been disappointed by the Clackmannanshire result, especially as I am here with some wonderful people who have put months and years of their lives into campaigning heart and soul.

But the count was fascinating. Professional Conservative, Labour and Lib Dem politicians working and socialising together and dressing the same. Tory ladies in pillar box red clothes and Lib Dem councillors in Labour Party rosettes. All braying and congratulating each other in the same voices, and looking smug and very happy together.

We are not winning tonight’s battle at the moment, but the battle lines have now become clearly defined between the single establishment of the media and all the political parties, and almost half the people – so far who want an alternative political structure. This is a stage in a process, and in its clarity and scale a major advance.

Massive Turnout

by craig on September 18, 2014 in Uncategorized

I am in Clackmannanshire which is a good indicator – neither East nor West, right on the Highland line, both urban and rural, substantial wealth but also a significant central belt working class population. The politics have tended to mirror national fortunes.

In Tullibody, which was once solid Labour, we progressed to applause and shouts from people coming in to their gardens. I have never seen anything like the turnout. I have spoken personally to at least twenty middle aged or old people who have voted, who never voted before.

The perception is strongly that we are ahead. Nobody knows what is in those 800,000 postal ballots, but the voters on the day are openly and exuberantly broadcasting their allegiance. Weirdly enough, several people including myself have commented that the mid evening voters were the first group who had given a feeling of predominantly No = but 70 to 80 per cent of voters had already cast their ballots before then. Only a feeling, but it is feeling very, very good.

I shall be at the Clackmannanshire count invigilating. Should be one of the earlier declarations.

The Buzz

by craig on September 18, 2014 in Uncategorized

On Belleveue Road Edinburgh where I am staying, the number of houses or apartments sporting yes posters had suddenly gone up from 13 to 23, including some great homemade efforts. The No count remained stationary at eleven. I noticed new yes posters in Broughton Street and Albany Street too. There seems a huge last minute proclamation of belief – which is precisely what Andy Murray has done too. In a last gasp of silly bias, the BBC claimed that his tweet was ambiguous, and then stopped reporting it at all. This is Andy Murray’s “ambiguous” tweet.

“Huge day for Scotland today! No campaign negativity last few days totally swayed my view on it. Excited to see the outcome. Let’s do this!”

People with Yes badges stopping and talking to each other on the street. The central belt looking very good indeed. Currently campaigning in Larbert, then Stirling, then Alloa.

Why We’re Voting Yes

by craig on September 18, 2014 in Uncategorized

On this, the most exciting day of my life, here is a video by Laura Wadha. She kindly said she was inspired to make it by hearing me speak in Cupar. I am so proud to have been part of this people based movement.

I am watching now as voters walk down to the polling station. Whatever the result (and I believe we will win) the resilience of so many Scottish people in the face of the most concerted and unanimous media, corporate business and professional politician propaganda blitz in western democratic history has been quite extraordinary. Local, people-based, paying no attention to “leaders” and utilising the oldest forms of human communication combined with the most modern of social media, the people’s campaign for independence has been astonishing. Now we can grasp the chance to create a new kind of modern society.

The most important day of my life.

Channel 4 Censorship

by craig on September 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

For the 45th consecutive time I have been invited, organised and then blocked at the last moment from a mainstream media appearance.

On Sunday I received this email from Channel 4:

Channel 4 have cleared their schedule for a live, hour long prime-time programme on Scottish Independence at 10pm on Wednesday 17th September in Edinburgh. I was wondering whether this is something you would consider being involved in?

With just hours to go before Scotland votes, the fate of the whole United Kingdom hangs in the balance. Jon Snow is hosting the debate live from Edinburgh, and will be joined by major politicians, voters, campaigners and well known faces from all across the United Kingdom to thrash it out one last time before the polls open.

We will have a panel of guests, and a front row of experts who will all join the discussion and we would love if he would consider coming along.

Do give me a call if you need more information or have any questions, we’d love to have you on the show if possible

On Monday I phoned them and agreed the details and they told me where to go. This afternoon they cancelled me because “the panel was full”. It was not full when they invited me or agreed everything.

Regular readers will know this happens again, and again, and again. I am invited to a programme, then shortly before the appearance am cancelled because some blocking mechanism steps in. The determination of the establishment to keep dangerous dissent off the airwaves is still implacable – even in Edinburgh tonight. By Friday they will look pretty forlorn.

.

Police Rebut Unionist Smears

by craig on September 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

George Robertson - Third Arse From Left

George Robertson – Third Arse From Left

George Robertson has been designated by the Labour Party to lead a campaign to have a Yes vote nullified, on the grounds of campaign irregularities, intimidation and overspending. This has been agreed by Miliband’s office. One of the great advantages of being a small country like Scotland is that you very easily discover what is happening through family and social connections.

The media propaganda about “violent nationalists” is designed both to try to sway undecided voters to No (along with the disgraceful Gordon Brown “if you don’t know, vote No” slogan), and to provide ammunition to question the validity of the decision when they lose.

As I said, the great thing about a small country is it is very hard to keep secrets. People know what is happening, including the police. The Police Federation have put out a remarkable statement to contradict the media propaganda of violence and intimidation. Do not expect to see this featured prominently in the mainstream:

In response to increased press reports and comment implying increased crime and disorder as a consequence of the Independence Referendum Brian Docherty, Chairman of the Scottish Police Federation said;

“The Police Service of Scotland and the men and women who work in it should not be used as a political football at any time and especially so in these last few hours of the referendum campaign.

As I have previously stated the referendum debate has been robust but overwhelmingly good natured.

It was inevitable that the closer we came to the 18th of September passions would increase but that does not justify the exaggerated rhetoric that is being deployed with increased frequency. Any neutral observer could be led to believe Scotland is on the verge of societal disintegration yet nothing could be further from the truth.

Scotland’s citizens are overwhelmingly law abiding and tolerant and it is preposterous to imply that by placing a cross in a box, our citizens will suddenly abandon the personal virtues and values held dear to them all.

At this time it is more important than ever that individuals be they politicians, journalists or whoever should carefully consider their words, maintain level heads and act with respect. Respect is not demonstrated by suggesting a minority of mindless idiots are representative of anything. One of the many joys of this campaign has been how it has awakened political awareness across almost every single section of society. The success enjoyed by the many should not be sullied by the actions of the few.

Police officers must be kept free from the distractions of rhetoric better suited to the playground that the political stump. If crime has been committed it will be investigated and dealt with appropriately but quite simply police officers have better things to do than officiate in spats on social media and respond to baseless speculation of the potential for disorder on and following polling day”

Wisdom from Poland

by craig on September 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

A Polish gentleman told me something profound last night. He said he had for months been determined to vote No, because he thought the United Kingdom had welcomed him in. Then he started to notice something very important indeed.

He had supported Solidarnosc as a young man, and he had lived through the overwhelming barrage of state media propaganda against it. All the newspapers, radio and TV had broadcast for month after month that if Poland left the Soviet orbit the economy would be destroyed, trading links would be severed, everybody would lose their pensions and housing, they would be invaded, the currency would collapse. Democracy campaigners were branded as right wing nationalist thugs. The people had no access to a fair hearing on the media, and communities had to organise alternatively through social networks.

A few weeks ago he had suddenly realised that precisely the same thing was happening in Scotland that he had witnessed in Soviet controlled Poland. A monolithic and all-pervading media was pumping out the same propaganda on a permanent basis, and even the arguments they were making were precisely the same arguments the Soviets had made. He had suddenly realised that democracy in the UK was an illusion – the apparatchiks of the main political parties and the entire media, both state and private, in fact belonged to and promoted the same ruling establishment. Only the methodologies were different, and raw power slightly better hidden in the UK than in the old Soviet bloc. But the truth was of hard rich men wielding power, in both cases, and keeping the people down.

I have immense respect for him, and will always carry that insight with me. He spoke to me after my talk in Linlithgow last night and it is a great example of the way we have all been learning from each other, in a new understanding of how a real democracy might look.

Yesterday’s Campaign Trail

by craig on September 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

Inspirational meeting in Linlithgow last night. Wonderful people. Biggest applause of the evening for my suggestion that on the day of Independence, we seize the Trident nuclear missiles, dismantle them and refuse to give them back! A very bright audience, including some genuine undecideds. Everywhere I am especially cheered by the sheer determination of people to ensure they are not cheated by ballot-rigging, and their very wakeful understanding of the possibilities. It is not just a question of observers at the counts; there has been a groundswell to organise for ballot boxes to be followed from polling stations through to the count, which is essential but seldom done.

I confess to a boosted ego having been photographed and asked for my autograph frequently yesterday, something I am not used to! I have metamorphosised into “that man off youtube”, as the patronising BT woman would say, were she not living in the 1950s.

Despite the new media meme that all supporters of independence are evil Nazis, I really think we are going to win this. Communities are coming together to discuss how they wish to be governed, and an independent Scotland is going to bring a major change from current hierarchical political and economic structures. This truly is a revolutionary moment.

Absolute Lies From the Guardian

by craig on September 16, 2014 in Uncategorized

The Guardian have just published the most disgusting outright lies imaginable. I just got back from the St James Centre – I was literally just passing through on my way to change for this evening’s meeting. I saw Ed Miliband beetle in and beetle out again.

There was a prepared claque of Labour members with No signs, who had naturally attracted some curious Yes passers-by too. Miliband only does carefully controlled no opposition photocalls, so when there was some hackling and badinage he immediately scuttled away again. There was absolutely no pushing; shoving or threat. I have been in larger crowds at the chemists’ prescription counter. I personally called out “war criminal”, which I had every right to do.

To portray this as an angry mob denying free speech is so far removed from the truth that Severin Carrell should be sacked immediately. The man is a disgrace. He is of course only part of a deliberate effort to portray Scots as a violent group of intolerant nationalists. We are of course guilty of failing to show hushed deference to any Westminster trougher and war criminal they dare to send to address us.

Referendum Conundrum

by craig on September 16, 2014 in Uncategorized

I genuinely find it impossible to understand the gap between the opinion polls and what my eyes and ears tell me.

In Glasgow yesterday afternoon a small group of Better Together supporters were handing out material on Sauchiehall Street. Just fifty yards away on Buchanan Street a Yes stall was doing the same thing. The difference was so marked I wanted to quantify it to explain it to you.

I watched each stall for a timed fifteen minutes, immediately one after the other. These are both very busy pedestrianized shopping streets. The crowds going by on each were very similar in size and demographic.

In fifteen minutes the No team managed to give away 7 leaflets and one balloon (the latter to a child). I saw some of the leaflets immediately discarded. The No team were actively approaching people to hand out leaflets, and were shunned by the large majority of people.

By comparison the Yes stall was actively approached by large numbers of people. In the fifteen minutes, 56 people approached the stall and spoke and of those 42 took campaign material, while at least 11 made a donation. The final statistic is remarkable. I counted exactly the next 400 people I could scrutinise reasonably closely on Sauchiehall Street. Of these an extraordinary 52 – that is fully 13% – were wearing Yes badges. There were no large groups and no event in the vicinity that accounted for this. I saw only 2 No badges and one No balloon, again a small child.

I appreciate that this may seem strangely nerdish behaviour, but when I flatly tell you that I have been experiencing a revolutionary groundswell of popular feeling on the streets, that is a perception easily dismissed. The above are hard, statistical facts that in a small way quantify that feeling. The puzzle that remains to be solved is the extraordinary incompatibility between this evidence and the opinion polls.

I can accept that there is an exuberance about the Yes campaign – a belief that a better world is possible and the neo-con dominance of Westminster can be broken – that leads it followers to be enthusiastic and wish to share that belief. By contrast, the No voters to whom I have spoken have, in my own experience, never expressed any enthusiasm for the United Kingdom, but rather fear that an independent Scotland might fail economically – a fear with which they have been relentlessly programmed. Cowardice is not something you wish to display or tell people about. So I can see the psychology is different.

But if the opinion polls are right and the No vote is in the lead, then this psychological phenomenon must be extraordinarily powerful and universal, this behavioural difference so marked as to be in itself a quite extraordinary fact.

The alternative explanation is simply that the opinion polls are wrong. I discussed this with the Yes campaigners on that Buchanan Street stall. They had a considered view which seems prima facie eminently sensible. They believed that the people mobbing their stall were in the large majority people who had never been politically active before. They were not the kind of people who would ever have signed up to be part of online polling panels – the methodology of the vast majority of polls. Those who were on such online panels may give pollsters a reasonable reflection of how party support splits among the 60% of the population who might vote in a general election, but could tell nothing about the 40% who never vote or join online polling panels. Those people were the ones now taking badges and wee blue books. The other polling method was landline telephone, and that missed another great swathe of the Yes demographic – the younger voters.

I yet again saw the BBC baffled and fail to pick up on what was happening on the street as they could not find a man in a suit to interview. The No campaigners were al men in suits and the BBC team looked visibly relieved. For me this “man in a suit” media syndrome is the principal cause of the disconnect between media reporting and what is actually happening.

Tonight is my final set speech of the campaign – Linlithgow Bowling Club at 7.30 pm.

Off to Waverley Now

by craig on September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

Sounds more romantic than the Finland Station!

Live Now – Massive Protest Against BBC Bias

by craig on September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

http://new.livestream.com/IndependenceLive/BBCBiasV

Campaign Trail Again

by craig on September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

I am heading for the train back to Scotland for the final, frenetic stretch of campaigning to achieve national independence. Rather strange feeling on leaving the house, because I know that if we succeed I shan’t be coming back here to live, but rather staying to help build the new Scotland, in however minor a way.

I receive far more email than I can possibly reply to, about which I feel somewhat guilty. But I both replied and obtained permission to reproduce this one from Fiona Mathieson:

I am sure you will be receiving hundreds of messages from so many in Scotland at the moment. I would just like to say how grateful I have been for the information you have provided. I have been able to direct people to your blogs and videos which have helped them to start questioning and delve further into unveiling the truth.

Last week at work a colleague who was undecided came to me and said that not only was she voting yes, but her entire family of 47 were voting yes. I gave her the wee blue book and some of your video links and they all went off and looked into it and discussed it. They decided that yes was the only way forward for a future of hope and positive change.

I was late in joining the yes campaign only becoming politicised in the last 2 months as the light bulb slowly went on. I have never in my life felt so engaged and enthusiastic and am amazed to be part of something that is making history. The sad part being that I went through the entire grief cycle in a week moving between stages quite erratically as I came to grips with the level of corruption and deception from the government and the media. I know there will be many others who have been dealing with the same issues as myself.

However, onwards and upwards as we continue to engage with our sense of humour, passion and creativity in these last few days of the campaign.

Thank you for sharing your experiences and knowledge as it has helped many of us to stay on course as the continued scare tactics are dropped down on us from on high.

I think the greatest achievement of the campaign has been that half the population of Scotland has awoken to the fact that the mainstream media, and the BBC in particular, pump out a stream of propaganda in collusion with the state and corporate interests, and that much of it is untrue. If I have contributed to that realisation, I am very happy indeed, but I am only one of a number of alternative sources of information now available on new media. The great triumph of the Yes campaign has been the united force of social media and community mobilisation.

Thank you, Fiona, for your kind message. I hope and believe that your account will encourage others to make the same journey.

Glasgow Greets Its Imperial Masters

by craig on September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

You have probably all seen this already, but it made me laugh so much I just had to post it. The Labour Party brings up Jack Straw and 100 fellow troughers from Westminster to make a grand demonstration for the Union, and their efforts are negated by the brilliant mockery of two lads on a rickshaw.

A great example of the nimbleness and popular authenticity of the Yes campaign on the street, outwitting the Noes ponderous and expensive efforts.

Interesting to compare this to yesterday’s genuinely spontaneous scenes in precisely the same location yesterday. See the last thirty seconds of the first video – that No “demonstration” was given massive coverage by the BBC. Now look at this yesterday, which was not shown on the BBC at all.

Finally that full Jim Sillars interview on the BBC. I agree with every single word he said. The BBC only showed a 30 second extract after the live interview, and presented it as a “blunder”. Plainly not only were the BBC shocked at Sillars’ lack of neo-con orthodoxy, they could not understand that others might actually agree with him too.

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