Taking the Radical Road with AUOB 392

The radical road up Salisbury Crags got its name because pro-democracy labourers building it held meetings there to avoid bans within the city of Edinburgh, back in the era of Peterloo. This is precisely where Historic Environment Scotland are banning tomorrow’s Independence rally, and if we accept it we are turning our back on our heritage.

As somebody who has addressed half a million people in Hyde Park, I find the notion that political events may not be held in Royal Parks ludicrously spurious. Holyrood Park is a park – the clue is in the name. We are not asking to occupy the Palace. Where can you hold a political rally if not in a park?

In Stirling, the AUOB march was forced by the council on a route to Bannockburn that avoided the town centre entirely and wandered through leafy lanes to ensure nobody could see the demonstration. What is happening in Edinburgh is still worse.

I have been constantly explaining that we are now in a Catalan situation. The Establishment will do everything they can to prevent a second Independence Referendum, and local authority offices, quangos and media outlets form their outward defensive barriers – before you even get to the Scottish Office, and the dirty tricks that will be played by the UK security services.

The Tories have already announced that Westminster will not agree to another Indyref before 2027. We have a fundamental stand to make on whether we accept that a parliament in England dominated massively by representatives of England, has a veto on the self-determination of the Scottish people.

One day, all supporters of Independence are going to be forced to get their heads round the fact that London is going for the Madrid solution, and we are not going to achieve Independence without using peaceful, non-violent routes which are nevertheless going to be deemed illegal by the Establishment. Making a political speech in a Royal Park tomorrow is precisely the start of such challenges.

Our rally starts in Johnstone Terrace, where my father was born, and proceeds right past my current home. This is my ground and I am, as a citizen, going to stand for my rights here.

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392 thoughts on “Taking the Radical Road with AUOB

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  • Charles Bostock

    While on language, Irish civil servant acquaintances of mine have told me that if you want to become a cntral govt civil servant in the Republic of Ireland you have to have English and Irish. At the very least you have to pass an Irish language exam.

    I believe also that Canadian federal civil servants are also required to have English and French; those who are English speakers only are required to take French courses and show peogree.

    I wonder if the government of a future independent Scotland would tread the same path and make knowledge of Sots Gaelic compulsory for civil servants serving the Scottish state? Should they tread the same path?

    • Ian

      What relevance to the topic is this uninteresting question, easily answered if you you apply some basic thought to it. Or are you just phishing?

      • Loony

        The question is highly relevant to anyone seeking to draw comparisons between Scotland and Catalonia – which this blog post manifestly does.

        A large part of the problem in Catalonia is that generations of people have been indoctrinated via the Catalan language to believe that they are somehow different to their compatriots. The prevalence of Catalan also has negative consequences for people from other parts of Spain living in Catalonia and also for foreigners most of whom do not want their children educated in the Catalan language.

        In part the attachment to the Catalan language is a response to the repression of the Franco regime which outlawed Catalan (and all other minority languages). As the General said “Que hablen el idioma del imperio” I am not aware of any dictate emanating from London seeking control over what, if any language, Scots people speak. on the contrary I understand that English tax payers cross subsidize the BBC to allow them produce output in Gallic.

        • Republicofscotland

          “on the contrary I understand that English tax payers cross subsidize the BBC to allow them produce output in Gallic.”

          Jeez oh Loony, how many times must I correct you, on matter pertaining to Scottish independence.

          Scotland contributes £300 million pounds annually to the coffers of the BBC, or should I say Westminster, which is more appropriate. In return the BBC, Westminster, spends around £30 million on programming in Scotland.

        • Rob Royston

          The language repression practised by Franco was practised in Scotland as well and I was educated in English although every child in our community went to school speaking only Gaelic. I can remember the words (I now know they were conjunctions) and, but, so, etc written up on the blackboard. The number one priority was to get us to understand the other language.
          Our own language was being systematically put to death but it was saved on it’s deathbed with the arrival of the internet.n Our language, music and song has opened up our hidden history.
          In my old community a local historian had visited every houshold and written down all the history that had been handed down and when computers came along young people were able to work with his information and cross reference it with census and church records and trace every families history back for hundreds of years. This process has been repeated in most Gaelic communities by now so that the repressed Gaels now have probably easier access to their ancestral history than most.
          It’s obvious that the intention was that we would lose our links to the past and to each other.

          • Patmur

            Though I believe fervently in the idea of a United Kingdom, its true to say that Anglicization was imposed as ruthlessly in the UK as linguistic centralisation policies in Spain, France and Russia etc. After all, English as spoken in the South-East is not native to Scotland. Probably it would mean a bi-lingual solution. Scots English (probably somewhat closer to Dutch than is estuarine English) in the south of Scotland and Gaelic in the north and the islands. Much the same goes obviously for Wales, Cornwall and the Channel Islands (norman-French).

          • Bob smith

            What I find strange in the argument for Gaelic is that it was not regularly spoken in vast swathes of Scotland and never in Orkney or the Shetlands. I am a huge supporter of Gaelic being taught and the poetry and other aspects of Gaelic culture preserved and nurtured. I just think that it’s advocates do themselves no favours by trying to persuade others it was once the main language of the Scots.

          • Mary Paul

            My sister in law is from Dumfries. So far I am aware Gaelic was never spoken there. She does not consider herself any less Scottish as a result. My daughter in law’s father is from Banffshire and does not have a clan attribution. I gather there were no clans in Banffshire. I gather he does not think himself any less Scottish as a result. Geraint Thomas is Welsh and does not speak it. I gather he does not think himself any less Welsh as a result.

          • JOML

            Mary Paul, Dumfries is a Gaelic name!
            “One is that the name Dumfries originates from the Scottish Gaelic name Dùn Phris which means “Fort of the Thicket”. Another is that it comes from a Brythonic cognate of the alleged Gaelic derivation (c.f. Welsh Din Prys).”

          • JOML

            Bob Smith, I’m in Dunbar for tonight, down the east coast from Edinburgh. Dunbar is a Gaelic name – The place name comes from the Gaelic words dùn, meaning “a fort,” and barr, meaning “top,” or “summit.”
            I think you’ll find Gaelic names are common place across the length and breadth of Scotland. Orkney is more Norse, as you mention. However, I did have Gaelic speaking ancestors who stayed in Orkney in the mid-1880s, although they moved over from Lybster in Caithness.

          • Mary Paul

            Indeed the place names may be Gaelic but the jury seems to be out on the original language spoken in Dumfries

            From Rootsweb:

            In the 1600’s the people of Dumfries spoke Scots, many still do …..Anciently the language spoken in SW Scotland was Welsh which was eclipsed by Gaelic which in turn was replaced by Scots…. It’s perhaps worth adding that many people from Dumfries and surrounding counties came to Ireland in the 1600s, either as a part of the Montgomery Hamilton settlement or the Plantation of Ulster. Their day to day language was English, so I think it’s pretty safe to say that English was the norm for everyday conversation in Dumfries in the 1600s anyway.

          • fwl


            It is well known that Welsh was spoken in Dunbartonshire until C12 but unlikely thereafter. The jury is not out, but people may just wish not to recognise that Welsh was spoken anywhere outside of the present boundaries of Wales. Such is how history is written.

          • fwl

            Have a look at the dedication in Norman Davies’ book Vanished Kingdoms: ‘I’r anghofiedig: for those whom historians tend to forget’.

            “His view of the United Kingdom lacks a sense of Anglo-centrism. He remembers as a child on a hilltop village above Bethesda being given a copy of T Gwynn Jones’ Geiriadur. The word ‘Aeron’, he tells us, is an old word for Ayrshire. The name ‘Wallace’ derives from ‘Uallas’, the Gaelic for ‘Welshman’. In the chapter entitled ‘Alt Clud’ he goes to Dumbarton Rock, the great volcanic plug in the Firth of Clyde, that was the capital of the ‘Kingdom of the Rock’, a stronghold of the Welsh Britons for centuries.”

            quote from Adam Somserset in Wales Arts Review (as my copy of Vanished Kingdoms has itself vanished).

          • JOML

            Mary Paul
            “Indeed the place names may be Gaelic but the jury seems to be out on the original language spoken in Dumfries”
            So, are you suggesting non-Gaelic people choose to call Dumfries, Dumfries because they couldn’t think of a name in their own language? How bizarre.

        • Nevermind

          Two analcysts discussing how to fart with finesse. When are you two loons getting married?l
          When will you realise that it was the Tory’s who divided and split the union…. With their insistence, Angst for UKIPs bold rhetoric and possible loss of face with the public they proffered the referendum, the 1922 committee could have stopped it with enough support from MPs, and set up a hornets nest.
          Adversity and tribal adherence to one or other stance are now getting in each others way, making an all covering solution impossible.

          I hope I am wrong and a settlement will be part of a referendum/ GE, for us all to decide. This is not to denigrate the legitimacy of concerns over the NHS, universal credit, social care, child poverty in the hundreds of thousands, migrant agricultural labour, fracking for offshore profits vs. The democratic rights to oppose un-mandated developments that destroy and wreck our children’s future.
          Hope helps and heals!

        • Koke Deloso

          I’m not sure to what extent the Catalan language was banned under Franco. I have on my desk before me a copy of “Diari del captaire” by Joan Barat printed in Mallorca in 1955. This suggest there was not a total ban on the us of the Catalan language in that era.

        • Jude 93

          Champions of the English language usually talk as if the spread of English is just one of those spontaneous phenonema that spread without any real human agency. Utter tosh. Even if one leaves aside the historic imposition of English in countries like Wales and Ireland, and looks only at the present, it’s quite clear there is a coordinated global effort to make English the dominant language everywhere. To take an entirely random example, in Spain, the huge retail chain, the Corte Ingles (the clue is in the name I suppose) bans all Spanish and other non English language music in its stores – the same is true of many other supermarkets and department stores throughout Europe. Even in Anglophile Protestant countries like Denmark, some politicians have expressed strong disquiet over the way radio and TV relentlessly and deliberately marginalise the native language in favour of English. In Ireland, state bodies which had Irish names until fairly recently have been anglicised, and all new housing estates in the country are given ludicrously inappropriate (in the Irish context) Anglo names such as “the Hamptons”, “Grosvenor Lawns” etc. Regardless of how one feels about all of this, one thing is for sure: it ain’t happening by accident.

    • Republicofscotland

      Funnily enough Charles it was the Labour branch in Scotland that first began the introduction of Gaelic (as in gap and not in gate) road signs. Post 2007 when the SNP came to power, and expanded the introduction of Gaelic signage, that Labour suddenly found it a waste of money to promote the national language, Old Scots being more of a dialect than a language in my opinion.

      The Scottish government under the SNP has promoted the language, and several Gaelic language schools have opened in recent years. Though English is a useful language around the globe, I’d like it to be a second language eventually in Scotland behind that of Gaelic.

      • Charles Bostock

        All very interesting, I’m sure, but could you have a stab at answering the actual question, because you seem to have your finger on the pulse of SNP and independentist thinking.

        I understand that you are required to speak, read and write Catalan if you want to be a civil servant under the authority of the Catalan government. I was just wondering whether something similar (for Gaelic, obviously) might become policy in the event of an independent Scottish state with an SNP government.

        • Hatuey

          If that’s a question, the answer is “no”.

          Personally, I have zero interest in Gaelic. Or French for that matter, which they’ve been pointlessly shoving down Scottish children’s throats since time began.

          • Jo1

            I’m sure many Scottish school students totally disagree with you and are happy to have access to learning other languages.

          • Hatuey

            Jo1, I did actually go to school and I do actually know lots of people who feel the same about French. If I was to put a guess on it, I’d say about 1 in every 100,000 kids who had French forced on them went on to use it in some useful way.

            I’m being reasonable there because the truth is that I don’t know any single person who found it useful.

          • Andrew H

            Hmmm…. I learned both French and German at school for many years, I am certainly not fluent in either – more accurately, I can just about buy a baguette in France and even then not always without the boulangerie keeper responding in English. However, I have no regrets in learning these languages – quite the opposite (and even a few words makes travel so much more enjoyable).

            In New Zealand all/most of the white kids learn some Maori school (things like Kia-ora), (not so that they can actually speak the language), but more so that they identify as a nation. Also in many kids (and even some adult) programs on t.v. the presenters throw in the odd Maori word/sentence (much to the annoyance of some like Hatuey, but most more culturally aware people see this as a very positive step).

      • Patmur

        Possibly a solution like the swiss have. In Switzerland Schwyzerduitsch or Swiss German is the spoken language but German is written in Switzerland in High German. So English in Scotland might be taught as spoken language in Scots English and written as in Oxford English.

  • Dan

    Why do you even bother? The polls haven’t changed – there’s a rock solid 55% of Scots in favour of the UK and Brexit has done nothing to change that.

    • Republicofscotland

      The full force of Brexit hasn’t been felt yet, when it is that will be the right time to launch the referendum. Post March 2019.

        • Republicofscotland

          UK government White papers showing levels of economic hardship after Brexit, Boris Johnson quoted saying “fuck business” when they feel unsure about the way the British government is handling the debacle.

          A probable lack of medicines, a famine minister appointed, I take it certain foods will be difficult or far more expensive to buy/get. But US sub-standard foods will be bountiful.

          Firms moving to Europe, not just in name plate only which the EU has clamped down on. UK job loss predictions by think tanks in the hundreds of thousands, hospital staff shortages.

          Out of the Erasmus programme, Paris takes European Banking Authority and European Medicines Agency goes to Amsterdam, and we’ve not even concluded Brexit yet.

          It will be an unmitigated disaster, and the 55% will quake alright, like Turkey’s voting for Christmas, unless they come to their sense and vote to dissolve this preposterous union.

          • Patmur

            I suspect some kind of deal will be agreed to avoid a “No Deal” Brexit because the Conservative Party would be terrified of the consequences which would probably lock them out of Government for at least the next 20 years, and no amount of pro-Brexit propaganda on the BBC and printed media will be able to hide the truth from the people then. Probably the conservatives will submit to a Norway type deal which like all Brexit options will leave us worse off. The real problem is that decline after Brexit will be gradual and all-pervasive.

          • Mary Paul

            It was precisely this sort of dire warning campaign that put people off in the Referendum debate. Can you not for a change outline some of the positive benefits we get from being in the EU?

          • Republicofscotland


            Health and Saftey laws, Employment laws, Food protection laws, the Four Freedoms , the Erasmus programme, etc.

      • Clyebuilt

        R o S

        On the march the chant was heard

        What do we want


        When do we want it?

        After Brexit!

  • giyane

    Don’t worry, the withered Tory economy will eventually drop off. Investors are buying euros and the pound is about to sink without trace.

  • Sharp Ears

    With permission. An e-mail from Campaign Against the Arms Trade.

    ‘There are a couple of great events happening in London, saying no to the arms trade:

    1. “Shadow World” – Film Showing and Author Talk (Sun 7 Oct, 1pm) *This Sunday*
    Friends Meeting House, 52 St Martins Lane, London. WC2N 4EA
    The Shadow World film provides unique insight into the global arms trade, a business that counts its profits in billions and its costs in human lives. Winner of the 2016 Edinburgh Film Festival, for Best Documentary Feature Film, it has been called “an uncompromising exposure of what is really behind the arms trade” (CineEurope)
    The film will be followed by a talk from Andrew Feinstein, author, and expert on the impact of the global trade in weapons.
    Free to attend, donations welcome.

    2. AngloArabia: Why Gulf Wealth Matters to Britain – Talk and Panel Discussion with David Wearing / Iona Craig / Owen Jones. (Mon 15th Oct, 8.30pm)
    Brunei Gallery (Lecture Theatre), Between Malet Street and Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square
    Hosted by London Middle East Institute, SOAS.
    Why has Saudi Arabia enjoyed such strong political and military support from the UK?
    Join David Wearing, author of “AngloArabia: Why Gulf Wealth Matters To Britain”, Iona Craig of the New America Foundation, and author Owen Jones to find out more about the UK’s toxic relationship with Saudi Arabia.
    Find out more via the event page on the SOAS website.’

  • Andrew H

    London isn’t Madrid. English people mostly don’t care. Yes there are some that still dream of the empire and cling to this notion that Britain should be whole, but I don’t think thoughts would translate into violent action against the Scott’s (those days are gone). If there is violence and ill-feeling it will be between the Scotts themselves. (kind of like Brexit – where half the people we used to think were ok have now just become terminally ill morons).

    • Republicofscotland

      Not outright violence, however acts such as burying the McCrone Report or the seizing of 6000 miles of Scottish waters (fishing grounds and oil Wells ) is the nature of the Westminster beast.


      Recently the PM Theresa May asked the EU not to allow Scotland to have any say on Brexit, if NI got a special deal. Previously in 2014 David Cameron travelled around the EU asking EU foreign minister to say Scotland would not be allowed in the EU if it voted for independence.

      Cameron even stuffed a note into the hand of President Obama, (which took him by surprise) asking him to mention in his imminent press conference to appeal to Scots to stay in the union.

      Two weeks earlier Obama gave a speech in Ireland, proclaiming what a successful small independent nation Ireland had become.

      • Andrew H

        All I am saying is that as an English person I was repulsed by the actions of the Madrid government against Catalonian’s. So if the London sends in police to beat old ladies trying to vote, I’ll be disappointed to say the least. Beyond that I don’t give a shit. I also don’t give a shit about 6000 miles of Scottish waters. Yes, I like to go hiking in Scotland, so I’d appreciate it if future border controls are not too harsh, (but I wouldn’t mind having to change money – make it more of a holiday to a foreign land), but other than that its really hard for me too excited about this.

    • Paul Greenwood

      Yes there are some that still dream of the empire

      What has “the empire” to do with the United Kingdom ? Edward Longshanks and General Wade are key as is Clan Campbell

  • Pete Barton

    I remember that hay bale at Torness Craig, I climbed it too.

    Fresh back from sea, I was a 2nd radio officer with the British Merchant marine.

    Young, impressionable and hopeful.

    Still am hopeful by the way, it springs eternal.

    When I encamped into a bender inside the fence, I struggled to understand the cold unfriendly attitude with which I was met.

    The answer came next day..when asked, a companion explained that I was thought to be on the ‘outside’ -in other words, a plant.
    I remember the next day when the police politely explained that we had to leave the site; that there had been ‘£20k’ worth of damage to plant on site.

    “Who could be stupid enough to do that?” said I.

    Well well, now I know.

    How the he’ll did you manage to pass muster for the FCO I wonder?

    Maybe record keeping was slacker in those days.

    Off to Reekie tomorrow for the march with friends; just like old times eh?

    Do you remember the phalanx of police as we marched off site through the gates?

    It looked like a pack of military penguins.

    Looking forward to hearing you speak @ AUOB.

  • William Habib Steele

    I watched the 6:00 pm STV news expecting a report. Not a word!
    Very weird!

  • John Wood

    When you start to see the Metropolitan police on the street you’ll know we have Catalonia here

  • Charles Bostock

    Republic of Scotland

    You’ve been busy engaging with others but since you wrote something about there being an increase in the number of Gaelic language schools in Scotland I shall allow myself to repeat a question which you may have overlooked. It was as follows :

    “You’ve probably heard the saying “if you wish to kill a nation, kill its language”.

    With that in mind, do you speak Scots Gaelic? And if not, do you intend to learn it?”

    • JOML

      While you await a reply from RoS, perhaps you could tells us about the languages you are already fluent with and the ones you hope to learn in the future. Language is a fantastic tool for communication, but only if you have an open mind.

    • Andrew H

      The saying is old and probably a lie. Death of a language won’t end a culture. Death of a culture won’t end a nation. All these different languages are not convenient, and by the way we also need to switch to USA spelling to make it less tiresome for everyone. I’d suggest if you want to learn a second language it’d be more practical to learn Spanish or Mandarin. I’m not suggesting kids shouldn’t be taught a few words of Gaelic in primary school – but that’s mostly preserving culture not language.

      • Charles Bostock


        “Death of a language won’t end a culture”


        ” I’m not suggesting kids shouldn’t be taught a few words of Gaelic in primary school – but that’s mostly preserving culture not language.”

        Is there not a contradiction there?

        • Andrew H

          No, I think everyone is capable of learning some words (even Hatuey). To learn it fluently, you have to put in much more effort, and that is likely beyond many people’s goals (but obviously it is necessary some do, in order to be able to teach future generations). To me its seems possible to find a balance between exposing a large percentage of people to the language without necessarily forcing it down their throats. A lot can be achieved by simple things like t.v presenters saying good-evening in Gaelic, or one actor in a show speaking only Gaelic, stores having a smattering of food labels in only Gaelic and so on. To be successful it has to be at a level where those that only speak English can mentally still fill in the missing words (otherwise they will just change channels to something they can understand/ won’t be able to buy what they are looking for).

        • Andrew H

          Also, language is only one of many ingredients to culture, so even without preserving language the culture isn’t lost. Throwing the totem pole is a particularly Scottish sport, yummy haggis & fried mars bars, all your tartans and clans, Scotland’s unique history … (excuse my general ignorance on details). There are probably many things that make Scottish people think they are not English beyond the presence of the wall, but even within Scotland there are probably sub-cultures trying to keep their own particular heritage.

      • Rob Royston

        The schools are not just teaching a few Gaelic words. My wife, who is also a fluent speaker of the language, sometimes meets with a granddaughter of a friends partner. This girl attends Gaelic school in Glasgow and she can converse with her as fluently as people did in our generation.
        The language will survive and with it so much culture and history that It’s detractors thought they had expunged from our nation’s memory.

    • Ken Kenn

      Och ay – the noo.

      Jings crivens and all that.

      Having read The Broons Annuals as a kid I know everything there is to know about the Scottish language.

      Here’s the thing though: speaking a different language does not necessarily make you enemies.

      Scots and anyone else learning their former language isn’t a threat to me – it is for you seemingly so put your Pith Helmet back in the cupboard and visit the other English world of – oooh ………let’s say the North of England. Same language there but plenty of variation.

      We speak the language of the US and vice versa and for that reason many people think that this is where the ‘ Special Relationship ‘ comes from.

      It’s a load of cobblers though but the alleged relationship with the US is pushed by the media and politicians as if it’s a given.

      It isn’t – it’s historical garbage. They got our gold and we’re are all ( still paying ) and to put the tin hat on it our ‘Special Relationship ‘ has led to us buying a load of crap nuke missiles that the US doesn’t want for a princely sum.

      With friends like that give me The Scots -The Welsh and the Irish anyday.

      No matter which language they speak.

      By the way – if you end up quoting Kipling we’ll know which side your on.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Don\’t you love traitor Vladimir Frolov, the turncoat who fingered the 10 CIA sleepers of the Manhattan 11 for the Anglo-Americans as Russian spies, claiming that the GRU well continue, like all spy agencies. in its incompetent ways. Looks like everyone is willing tp work for the highest bidder.

    • Andrew H

      “Looks like everyone is willing to work for the highest bidder.”: To a large extent that is disingenuous to everyone. Nations have no right to expect more from their citizens. (but probably you shouldn’t sign up to be a spy unless you do feel some obligation – that was Sergei’s misunderstanding). I don’t sing ‘God save the Queen’ – I don’t believe in the first and the second is an entitled bitch. My home is my house, and I accept that taxes come with employment and services, so I have no fundamental objections to those, but that is where I draw the line: my life is my life and I owe zip to the Queen or the nation. That is where Brits and Americans differ.

      • Trowbridge H. Ford

        Well, why do you and other Brits go along with the PMs who helped see to the brutal murders of Dr, David Kelly, Sasaha Litvenenko, Garetth Williams, Gudurn ]Loftus, Steve Rawlings, the al-Hillis et al. ad nauseam? You are like the Americans only more gentlemanlty babout it.

        • Andrew H

          I don’t see how your comment is related to Sottish independence or to the nature of independence itself.

  • BrianFujisan

    Nervermind –

    ” good luck with it, a bit too far for me to come. ” – I shall write you and the Good Lady’s Name on a pebble for the YesSrones Cairn.. There was indeed a lot of Saltire up Arthurs Seat at the Last Big Rally, myself , a friend and kis two younsters went up..( p.s .. the Highest peak on Arran is Goat Fell, not a Munro though at 2, 866 ft..been at the top af that too.. some kool wind erroded Granite formations at the top.

    Duncan Spence
    October 5, 2018 at 17:50

    ” I wish I could stand with you and many others. ” Ill write your name on a pebble too

    The Yes Stones Cairn –


    An announcement From AUOB Re the fight with HES – They Won –

    “We are not long out of the meeting with the authorities Re #AUOBEdinburgh, where we sat round a table with Edinburgh council, Police Scotland and Historic Environment Scotland.

    “We are proud to announce that Police Scotland have made an executive decision in the interests of health & safety and public order to facilitate our stance that we are Rallying at Holyrood park and are implementing emergency powers to make this happen.

    “HES maintained their political stance that we were still refused permission but after a long meeting where we held to our principles we are delighted to announce Holyrood park is ours Tomorrow.”

    Here we come.

      • BrianFujisan

        Magic JOML

        If you see a Super Handsome dude Wrapped in a Saltire, And Holding a Big Palestine Flag.. Say Hullo.. The Yes Stone Cairn will be over at the Security Bolards.. and you are all welcome to take one home.. put them in a place of your chosing..Big Numbers expected..Enjoy.

        • Jo1

          HES dispute what AUOB say Brian. There’s a report on BBC news site. They say their position was not overturned by Police and it still stands.

          I hope it goes well.

    • Nevermind

      Thanks for that Brian, now I have a target for my raindrop to fall on. I’m honoured to be pebbled in a cairn….life can be beautifull. My best to your daughter and the little bearn.
      I hope that thousands will attend tomorrows gathering under AUOB …,.Time is on your side, but its fast flowing…..

      Take some footage for us here.

      • BrianFujisan


        Yes many of us are very worried about Timescales.. Brexit Looming Chaos.. Tory stated Holyrood Power Grab

        I’ll get some Footage for yas. stay well both of you.

    • J

      Has there been a redistribution of wealth in living memory which hasn’t hit them the hardest? I’m not sure I see the point you’re driving.

      • Hatuey

        It would help if you knew what you were talking about. Living standards in the UK more or less rose steadily from about 1950 until quite recently.

        Nobody mentioned redistribution of wealth. Actually, the only people I have ever heard using that phrase are fake leftists and Marxists, usually just before they ask for your vote or a donation.

        As for what I’m driving at, I think it’s interesting that people could be talked into voting for something that was so predictably and obviously against their interests.

  • Ruth

    Brilliant. We’re all going to have to make a stand, one that may hurt. I’ve taken a very small step by not renewing my TV licence. I’ll miss one or two good programmes but I will not contribute to the mouthpiece of the corrupt UK government/Establishment or basically sponsor terrorism.

  • JOML

    Why would it be strange, Anon1? There’s quite a number of English parents choosing to put their children to the Gaelic schools here in Edinburgh and Glasgow. Perhaps they are not as parochial as yourself. Aren’t you interested in learning a second language, whether Gaelic, German, French, Spanish, Russian, Cantonese or any other? Language introduces you to different cultures and perspectives.
    You’re not a UKIP voter are you?

  • SA

    The Brexit vote revealed a divided nation with only a small number of voters swaying the vote. A similar sort of margin is probably also the case in the Scottish independence referendum. We are talking here of divisions not unity.
    Both votes depend on simple majorities and translate to a zero sum game. This is where I think there is a problem. On serious matters like those two, there are no simple answers and whoever wins will leave a very large chunk of disgruntled people. Should such referenda not be more nuanced than this? After all the world is now a smaller place with IT and we should be a little bit more sophisticated than that.

    • Loony

      Did you know that the definition of country is “a nation with its own government occupying a particular territory”

      It is a racing certainty that you will not define the “particular territory” that constitutes Catalonia, since any attempt to do so would reveal you to be an arch purveyor of fake news. Luckily enough your not defining the territory that constitutes Catalonia also reveals you to be an arch purveyor of fake news.

      • Charles Bostock

        Wasn’t fellow Catalan and now fugitive Carlos Puigdemont (and or his party) mixed up in some scandal or other as well?

        • Loony


          Catalans are distinct from the Spanish in a number of significant ways. For example some Spaniards enjoy bull fighting – but not Catalans. Rather Catalans prefer different hobbies – such as the well known pastime of driving cars filled with high denomination bank notes to Andorra. So much more civilized.

          Where this cash all comes from is a mystery – and to unravel the mystery would require a detailed analysis of exactly how the Catalan authorities let public works contracts. It is all so unfair – you simply want to upgrade a local sewerage system and all you end up with is cars filled with cash.

  • Ottomanboi

    According to the Catalan newspaper El Punt Avui Sturgeon is to meet Vice President Aragonès of the Generaltat and Scots academics during the SNP conference.
    A move in the right direction. Benvinguts a Escòcia!
    I hope that this year Scotland’s national languages, other than that ubiquitous and colonial Inglis, will be acknowledged by their presence in stage graphics.
    Play the culture cards SNP….let yourself go!

    • Anon1

      Artificially trying to revive a dead language just to appease the inferiority complex of Scotch nationalists is not a natural thing. If a language is not needed or useful then it dies out.

      • JOML

        Anon1, you clearly do not know what a “dead language” is. Your ignorance and prejudices shine through on your posts here. Do you know where Scots Gaelic is in comparison with the minority languages across the world? I suspect not and so you should pull your trousers up and started talking out of your mouth.

      • Loony

        Not necessarily true.

        Apparently something approaching 25% of the Scottish population have difficulties with literacy. Banging on about English as a tool of oppression is a cheap and easy alternative to educating vast swathes of the population.

        Naturally Scottish Nationalists hold the mass of the people living in Scotland in contempt. Developing a sudden interest in Gallic helps to give meaning to that contempt. “Can’t read and write in English? Try this instead – oh what a jolly laugh sneering at the poor”

          • Loony

            You would not want to take me seriously – too much of a danger that you would need to recognize your own sneering contempt for the poor. That would not fit at all well with your self image of enlightened virtue, and purity of mind and spirit.

            Here are some Scottish people. Ask yourself whether you admire these people, respect these people, or hold them in utter contempt.


            Whilst I do not know any of these people I suspect that at least some of them may form part of the 25% of the population that struggle with literacy. Once you have thought about your reaction to these people then you can turn your virtuous hatred back to me.

          • JOML

            You poor Loony, your link is to British people who I think need help, although I think education has passed them by. I have no “virtuous hatred” for you, only pity.

  • fwl

    Off topic but lovely to see the Banksy shredding at Sotheby’s, particularly to see so many amazed and smiling laughing faces as if they are children watching snow fall for the first time.

  • Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh

    “Un peuple qui perd ses mots n’est plus entendu de personne.” (François Mitterand)

    “… Et par malheur ne s’entend plus lui-même.” (Philipe de Saint Robert)

    “Pour nous, Canadiens, la Francophonie n’est pas seulement une façon de vivre – c’est une façon de survivre.” (Lucien Bouchard, former Canadian Ambassador in France)

    “The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of Ingsoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible. It was intended that when Newspeak had been adopted once and for all and Oldspeak forgotten, a heretical thought – that is, a thought diverging from the principles of Ingsoc – should be literally unthinkable, at least so far as thought is dependent on words.” (George Orwell, ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’, Harmondsworth, 1968, pp. 241-2.)

  • SA

    Healthcare environmental services LTD the company responsible for the body parts pile up scandal. It seems that this company has been operating insafely for a while judging by this feedback from employees:

    It seems that the owners/directors come from Scotland.

    38 degrees has a petition about this

    38 Degrees Logo

    A private company called HES has just been exposed for leaving hundreds of tonnes of dangerous waste from our hospitals – including human body parts – to fester and pile up. [1] The worst part? HES made £15 million profit from public money while doing it. [2]

    The story has broken all over the news. [3] The scandal has forced the government to review how it decides who can run these kinds of NHS services. [4] …, this is a chance to make sure we fix the problems that led to this disgusting failure.

    Currently, companies that aren’t up to scratch can be handed NHS contracts. [5] If hundreds of thousands of us – the people who use and pay for the NHS – sign a huge petition calling for changes to these rules, the public outrage could force the government to make the changes. It could mean incompetent private companies aren’t trusted to deliver NHS services again.

    So …, will you sign the petition now to make sure incompetent private companies aren’t trusted to run our NHS services?

    Flags were raised when HES, the company at the heart of this scandal, said they’d run NHS waste disposal far cheaper than any other bidder. [6] But they were handed the contract anyway. [7] An emergency clean-up is now underway – and taxpayers are footing the bill. [8]

    When it comes to running services in our hospitals, we – patients and taxpayers – don’t want contracts handed to the lowest bidder. We expect better. Our NHS was founded to make sure we get care, whenever we need it. When a company like this is allowed to provide important services to us, it’s a wake-up call that shows we need to tighten the rules on who we trust to run NHS services.

    But right now, this scandal could happen again. Only huge public pressure will force the government to change the rules. So …., will you sign the petition now?

    [1] HSJ: Exclusive: Trusts alerted as firm stockpiles clinical waste and body parts:
    BBC: Human body parts ‘pile up’ in NHS waste backlog:
    [2] The Guardian: Body parts pile up as NHS supplier fails to dispose of human waste:
    [3] See Notes 1 and 2, and:
    The Daily Mail: Mountain of 750 tonnes of HUMAN body parts has been piled up at NHS disposal company paid millions:
    [4] “The government has said it will review the way contracts are awarded to clinical waste disposal firms in the future, in the wake of the HES case and a legal challenge earlier this year:”
    HSJ: Government reviewing procurement process after ‘human body parts’ scandal:
    [5] See note [4]:
    “In July one senior figure in NHS procurement told HSJ that the price reductions for clinical waste services were about as low they could reasonably go…The source said in relation to the SRCL case: ”The fact that quality was not assessed as part of the competition and the framework specifications were relied upon is worrying. Framework specifications are generic by their nature. I doubt that all supplier depots and transfer stations permits were checked at framework stage as there would just be too many.”
    HSJ: Government reviewing procurement process after ‘human body parts’ scandal:
    [6] HSJ: Exclusive: Trusts alerted as firm stockpiles clinical waste and body parts:
    [7] An emergency meeting was chaired by Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Health, to oversee the emergency response: see notes 1, 2, 3
    [8] The Health Secretary has “ordered £1m to be earmarked to help up to 50 NHS trusts, whose contracts with Healthcare Environment Services Ltd could collapse following enforcement action against the company by government regulators:”
    HSJ: Exclusive: Trusts alerted as firm stockpiles clinical waste and body parts:

  • Sharp Ears

    Vanessa Beeley meets the White Helmets.

    She explains in her tweet:
    ·3 Oct
    Interview wth functioning #WhiteHelmets in Daraa Al Balad. Al Mahameed, leader, tries to convince me they dont work wth Nusra Front despite centre being in grounds of former #AlQaeda military HQ. Also tells me other #Syria WH teams led by and consist of #NusraFront.https://twitter.com/VanessaBeeley/status/1047475065909104640

  • Charles Bostock

    Well. I’m happy that my post about the role of Gaelic in an independent Scotland started off an interesting series of comments and views. I think we’ve all learnt something. As for myself, I’ve learnt that ardent Scottish nationalist/independentist Republicof Scotland does not speak Scots Gaelic and does not intend to learn it. That is rather surprising. Or perhaps not. The dogs that bark loudest and all that……

    • Charles Bostock

      Tht’s of course another difference between the Catalan nationalists/independentists and the Scottish nationalists/independentists. The former speak the language of what they want to be their future nation whereas the latter, generally speaking, don’t.

      • Clark

        The Education (Scotland) Act 1872 mandated the exclusive use of English-medium education in Scotland, in effect banning Scottish Gaelic-medium education. For this reason it is credited with causing substantial harm to the language and contributing to its overall decline:


        People still living (2001) can recall being beaten for speaking Gaelic in school:


        • Clark


          Originating in the historic territory of Catalonia, Catalan has enjoyed special status since the approval of the Statute of Autonomy of 1979 which declares it to be “Catalonia’s own language”, a term which signifies a language given special legal status within a Spanish territory, or which is historically spoken within a given region.

          Under the Franco dictatorship, Catalan was excluded from the public education system and all other official use, so that for example families were not allowed to officially register children with Catalan names.[117] Although never completely banned, Catalan language publishing was severely restricted during the early 1940s, with only religious texts and small-run self-published texts being released.


          So the rarity of Scottish Gaelic is directly attributable to Westminster acting like a fascist dictatorship.

    • Republicofscotland

      “As for myself, I’ve learnt that ardent Scottish nationalist/independentist Republicof Scotland does not speak Scots Gaelic and does not intend to learn it.”

      Keep fishing Charles, lets just say that summers when fine are a delight on the Outer Hebrides. Where most possess at least a smidgen of Gaelic.

      Incidently how’s your Hebrew?

      • Charles Bostock

        Hardly fishing, is it? If such a red hot nationalist/independentist as yourself could speak Scottish Gaelic you wouldn’t hesitate to tell us.

        I often get the impression you speak in tongues – sorry to see that Scots Gaelic is not one of them 🙂

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