Propaganda against Scotland 270

A particularly sickening trick from the BBC a few weeks back raised my blood pressure whilst in hospital and almost finished me off. A French Euro MP was asked for “the French view” on Scottish independence. She said that France would oppose it and the French government takes the view that an independent Scotland would be outside the European Union. I was absolutely astonished that the BBC had managed to find the only French person in the entire world who is against Scottish independence, and that she was telling an outright lie about the position of the French government.

Then I realised who she was – the former research assistant (and rather more) of New Labour minister and criminal invoice forger Denis Macshane. She worked for years in the UK parliament for New Labour, in a Monica Lewinsky kind of way. All of which the BBC hid, presenting her simply as a French Euro MP. There are seventy million French people. How remarkable that the one the BBC chose to give the French view of Scottish independence was a New Labour hack!

Today the news came out that Scotland contributes a net £3.6 billion a year to the UK government finances. Scotland’s fiscal deficit is an extremely respectable 2.6%, compared to 6% for the UK as a whole, or 6.3% for the rest of the UK excluding Scotland.

But even that is not the full story. These figures are based on a geographical allocation of oil revenue – but that geographical allocation is based on New Labour’s incredible gerrymandered 1999 England/Scotland maritime border which gives eight major Scottish oil fields to England, including two North of Dundee.

On a realistic maritime boundary, which an independent Scotland would undoubtedly win from the International Court of Justice, Scotland would actually have a budget surplus of £1.9 billion. Hurray, boys and girls, we are in the black! Remember I was Head of the FCO Maritime Section and I personally was involved in negotiating most of the UK’s maritime boundaries, including with Ireland, France, Denmark and Belgium.)

I know it is hard to believe, but that really is the England/Scotland maritime boundary which the revenue figures in the GERS report are based on. That is why England’s oil revenues are surprisingly high in the report – and Scotland’s surprising low.

But even on that boundary, the GERS report shows beyond any argument that Scotland’s public finances would be much better outside the Union.

Yet this morning the BBC choose to present the report as showing that because Scotland has a fiscal deficit, an independent Scotland would not be viable. Despite the fact that deficit percentage is less than half that of England. Despite the fact that every country in the Western world has a budget deficit.

The BBC have simply become addicted to the Big Lie when it comes to Scottish Independence. Talking of big lies – now they are even wheeling out Blair!

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270 thoughts on “Propaganda against Scotland

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  • Dreoilin

    How many people in Britain know of that daft maritime boundary? I’d guess there are not many.

  • lwtc247

    “She worked for years in the UK parliament for New Labour, in a Monica Lewinsky kind of way.” – That’s better Craig. 🙂

    and Viva Commandante Chavez!

  • Donald MacDonald

    My wife insists on paying the licence fee, by direct debit, otherwise I’d cancel it. We get this stuff on a daily basis from the BBC in Scotland, and they barely even attempt balance any more.

    The nightly broadcast ‘news’ in Scotland is bad for my blood pressure, so I skip it.

  • Cryptonym

    That border won’t stand any fair internationally adjudicated determination, as you say. It is another crime committed by the Labour party and Whitehall.

    While there has been much mention of the GERS report and nowadays since re-opening of the Scottish Parliament it is produced by the Scottish civil service, for many decades, s, it was produced by those same mandarins, unionist and Tory by selection who produced the McCrone report – which was itself a plot and an attack on democratic expression – since the 1970s but probaly earlier the GERS reports were were complete fabrications and fakery, including such distortions as receiving whisky taxation at London offices of distillers, and thus counted as English revenue, and assigning operating costs of the London Underground system to Scotland!

    Which is why I say that Iraq having seen in Iraq, conservatively estimated deaths of 1-2 million and refugees into neighbouring countries and further afield of at least 6 – 7 million. These people were considered no more than so many ants, likewise Scotland with a population of just 5-6 million in total, are held in the same expendable low regard. They already have turned the Solway coast into a depleted-uranium desert of mutated creatures, as at the northern tip with Dounreay and have placed the deadly timebomb of Sellafield on our doorstep. Westminster will not hesitate to unleash the residual-UK’s military against Scotland’s people, till every last drop of oil and gas has been stolen and used to line the pockets and bank balances of a rapacious international criminal elite.

  • Cathryne

    Dear Mr. Murray,

    could you please clarify the map annotations? Are the red line and arrow part of a diagram? If so, what are the axis labels? Or, are all lines (white, yellow, red) the actual borders and the arrow merely indicates the northwards shift? Also: do the 6000 miles mean a shift of that lenght, or is it actually square miles of area?

    Thanks and greetings!

    Cathryne Linenweaver

  • Fred

    “I was absolutely astonished that the BBC had managed to find the only French person in the entire world who is against Scottish independence, and that she was telling an outright lie about the position of the French government.”

    Why on earth would the French government support Scottish independence? I mean like Salmond would be sending transport planes to help them out in Mali.

    Twice in the last century France has relied on Britain to bail them out and twice Britain was there with the power to get it done why would France want to see a weakened Britain? Those Trident missiles on the Clyde are covering French backs as well you know.

    I don’t think they want the Scots giving the Basques and ideas either.

  • crab

    The yellow is the 1987 boundary and the red is 1999. 6000 miles is short for 6000 square miles.

  • Cryptonym

    Fred do stop being silly, the French have more than enough nukes of their own and not under American control either, like ‘our’ WMD.

  • craig Post author


    If you click on the link “including two north of Dundee” you will get a post explaining it in some detail. That gives the actual coordinates. There you will also find a link to the actual statutory instrument establishing the new boundary, so you will have complete information.

  • Maureen Potter

    I am disgusted with the bias being shown by the BBC at present. It is a downright disgrace. We pay our licence fees so we deserve the same treatment as those opposed to Independence.

  • Daryl Baptie

    Great read, and I hope this gets shared as much as it can be as I see 0% chance of MSM reporting it!

  • Villager

    I’m shocked! And The Captain Louis Renault Award goes to….should we start that BBC acronym contest again?

    They say ‘Charity begins at home’. Well it seems so does screwing, and then on to your neighbour…

    About ” Then I realised who she was – the former research assistant (and rather more) of New Labour minister and criminal invoice forger Denis Macshane. She worked for years in the UK parliament for New Labour, in a Monica Lewinsky kind of way. All of which the BBC hid, presenting her simply as a French Euro MP.” Isn’t Claire Perry the new Monica Lewinsky? Or maybe thats unfair on Ms Lewinsky.

  • Mary - for Truth and Justice

    Further to mine earlier, I have just come in and find the talking head of Agent Cameron saying ‘By sticking to our deficit reduction, we can keep interest rates low’ etc. He obviously plans to stick with Gideon’s Plan A and give us continuing doses of austerity. Out with the Bullingdon Boys and let’s find a President Roosevelt with a New Deal.

    From the Bullingdon Bullshit Corporation –

    David Cameron speech on the economy

    except at the moment there is a blank screen saying

    This content doesn’t seem to be working. Try again later.

    Just like the British economy then!

    Wonder who writes his speeches? He still has to use notes. He has not acquired Bliar’s neurolinguistic skills either.

  • Villager

    “They say ‘Charity begins at home’. Well it seems so does screwing, and then on to your neighbour…”

    I should add, although, these days its fashionable to go farther afield in order to keep the military-industrial-complex wheels turning through a triple-dip recession, whatever that means. What an evil world. Humanity has definitely taken a wrong-turn. Its important to observe that for what it is. Thanks for your contribution Craig.

  • Fred

    “Fred do stop being silly, the French have more than enough nukes of their own and not under American control either, like ‘our’ WMD.”

    I’ll stop being silly when you stop being fucking stupid.

    Craig dismissed a BBC report purely on the grounds of the reputation of the person interviewed without giving any actual evidence that the facts were actually untrue. So I googled it to check and found that French interests lie with a united Britain, they would be very unlikely to support Scottish independence and the combined military and nuclear might was one of the reasons given.

    I found no evidence that the French government would support independence, I looked, maybe you can find something I missed.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    Mary’s latest post refers indirectly to the Bullingdon Club. And the PM’s membership of that club while at Oxford is often used as a stick to beat him with.

    But why, when you think about it? The Bullingdon Club may not be everyone’s cup of tea, and it would certainly not admit any of the Eminences into its ranks, but at least it pays in full for any damage caused to property after its let’s say more spirited meetings. Which is more than the young London rioters did after their club outing…..


    La vita è bella, life is good! (pay for the damage!)

  • Cath

    It’s actually even worse than you say. Better Together, the campaign for keeping Scotland in “the Union” spent yesterday morning trailing a leaked “top secret” Scottish government memo they had. When it was eventually published, it was a perfectly rational, calm, positive assessment, of the kind you’d hope a government would be doing and which is leading towards a white paper later in this year. However Better Together had added a fictional front cover with “TOP SECRET” stamped on it, making it look like a report, added 2 pages of propaganda of “what we’re saying this says” then covered it with post-it notes for the hard of thinking also saying what they think.

    Guess what Newsnight Scotland ran with – that or the GERS figures story? They even said “leaked to us” which is odd given it was leaked to Better Together. So when they say “us” are they admitting they’re the same thing. Gordon Brewer waved the report, complete with their front page in front of the camera.

    Guess what’s running on the front pages of all papers in Scotland today?

    You can see the original propaganda – and there’s no other word for it – here:

  • Indigo

    I don’t watch the BBC news any more … stopped watching it after a BBC interview with Mark Regev during Operation Cast Lead … He and the interviewer stood on high ground overlooking Gaza with white phosphorous shells clearly exploding in the sky above Gaza and stated that Israel wasn’t using this type of battlefield munition. The BBC reporter said nothing. Disgraceful.

    Now, to get back to Scotland – close to my heart because I’m Scots!

    Well, can’t say the BBC coverage surprises me, even Newsnight now trots out ‘economists’ who are nothing of the sort – they’re members of right-wing think tanks, lobbyists for a neo-liberal agenda.

    With regard to the maritime boundaries; I have a vague memory of this at the time … Didn’t Westminster argue that the maritime boundary should, essentially, be a continuation of the angle of the land boundary between Scotland and England? It did strike me as strange at he time but knowing little of international maritime law (to say the least!) I now find that the Westminster Government was telling porkies! Surprise, surprise.

    Thanks, Craig, you’ve confirmed what I always knew – we’d be much better off without them!

  • Donald MacDonald


    You ought to be aware, I’m sure you are, that the Herald is hardly a neutral source.

    The French will, like the rest of Europe, accept whatever the Scots decide. Like the rest of the European establishment they would probably prefer the status quo.

    But they also are sick and fed up of the UK. And several things are important to remember; fish, oil (yawn), and the north-west approaches.

    As to the UK, it cannot be fixed from within. Tory, Labour and LibDem are all of a likeness. They are banker benefit societies. The SNP are a little better, but not much. But they won’t form a Scottish Independent government for more than one term, I’d bet.

    We can start afresh, or nearly so. Without ‘a thousand years of British History’; of entrenchment of landed interests and elite greed.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    OMG, for once I find myself in total agreement with Fred (12h34) ! Well, why not – he’s right.

    Actually, I think I would almost welcome Scottish independence (and also the cession of Northern Ireland and even the independence of Wales if the wanted it). For one thing, it would solve the West Lothian question for once and for all.

    However, I remain to be convinced that an independent Scotland would be financially viable, at least if it maintains its present social policies. Therefore, if the referendum is won, expect the Scottish government to attempt to squeeze the maximum financial gain out of the rest of the UK, by means fair or foul. If I were the suspicious sort, I might just see Craig’s post as a kind of preparatory signal in this regard. But I’m not, so I won’t. 🙂


    La vita è bella, life is good! (how do you say that in Gaelic)

  • Donald MacDonald

    I should add, that Independence for Scotland is one of the few hopes the English Left has of overcoming the corporate, neo-con domination of their own politics.

    Once England faces the world with only its own resources and stops trying to be the main character in a Boys’ Own comic, it will, I am confident, rediscover its own greatness.

  • Villager

    Habbabkuk (aka ONEIL), no doubt the same applies to the pedophiles in your Catholic church to which you belong. Bugger them and then pay for it right? Its all alright then isn’t it? Thank you for your confessions.

    But the point that Craig is making that the UK/England books don’t balance.

  • Cath

    “I remain to be convinced that an independent Scotland would be financially viable, at least if it maintains its present social policies.”

    You might want to read the GERS report, particularly bearing in mind what’s in this article, and the fact it was actually designed as Westminster propaganda to convince Scots we couldn’t survive, yet still shows we could, easily.

  • Mary - for Truth and Justice

    MacShane aka Denis Matyjaszek has had more ‘puters than I have had hot dinners.

    Yards and yards of the stuff.

    Written evidence received by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards

    Surely not true? If true, what bad taste and judgement Ms Pryce has. One liar after another.

    The Daily Telegraph reports he is currently in a relationship with the economist Vicky Pryce.[11][64]

    Wonder how the police investigation into his activities is doing? It started in January.

    PLUS Something I did not know
    On 8 September 2009, MacShane organised the first of a series of secret meetings between Liam Fox, Adam Werritty, Matthew Gould, Britain’s Ambassador to Israel, and in some cases MacShane himself and members of Mossad, with the intention of enlisting British support for an Israeli attack on Iran.[24][25

    PLUS something I did know
    MacShane was active in support of Israel and was Labour Friends of Israel policy chair. He said in a statement: “Clearly I deeply regret that the way I chose to be reimbursed for costs related to my work in Europe and in combating antisemitism, including being the Prime Minister’s personal envoy, has been judged so harshly.”[49] However the Standards and Privileges Committee stated that the Commons had placed strict conditions and limits on funding MPs’ travel to Europe, MacShane was clearly aware of these rules, and concluded “Mr MacShane claimed in the way he did to ensure that his use of public funds for his European travel was not challenged” by sending misleading invoices to himself in order to claim the costs of travelling and to entertain European contacts.[6]:16,20–21

  • Cryptonym

    Fred: don’t wave your Charles & Di Anniversary Commemoration teacup at me like that, and watch you don’t poke yourself in the eye with that faded Jubilee bunting.

  • Craig P

    BBC Scotland have been traipsing round Europe recently looking for European politicians to diss the idea of Scotland in the EU. The politicians have been non-comittal (recognising this is a political issue that will be dealt with if need be at the time) but the BBC still report their views as being anti-Scotland. A number have complained that their views have been misrepresented (e.g. Lucinda Creighton of Ireland and Jean Asselborn of Luxembourg), but this is only reported on low-exposure sites like No retractions or corrections are offered by the BBC.

    Yesterday we were also told by the BBC (and today by the print media) that they have discovered a ‘secret report’ by John Swinney of the SNP. This report was recently created and disseminated by Labour. It is based on a Scottish government briefing from a year ago, but rolled out yesterday to help deflect the facts of Scotland’s relative wealth as shown in the GERS figures. The report claims that Scotland will have various expenses as an independent nation, such as £600m to set up a tax office. What the report doesn’t tell us is how much Scotland already pays to run the UK tax system – HMRC costs roughly £4bn/yr.

    They then told us that that GERS says Scotland runs a deficit, implying Scotland would be skint… but neglected to inform us the UK’s deficit is proportionally higher.

    The BBC must think we button up the back. Hopefully the tipping point will come soon where nobody in Scotland will believe their political reporting any more.

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