The Funny Tinge Group Ltd is a Boon to the SNP 672


It did not take me long to be proved right about this tweet, as the Funny Tinge Group Ltd was immediately promoted to a seat on BBC Question Time, and are going to be there next week too.

The BBC no longer has Westminster’s third party on QT every week, or given much airtime on other news and current affairs programmes, on the grounds the SNP are a “regional body” and thus not entitled to the consideration the Lib Dems got as third party in Westminster. The Funny Tinge Independent Integrity Initiative Group Ltd (Dir. Shai Masot) are of course not a party at all, they are a limited company, and they have no members. One thing they most certainly are is a “regional body”. Not a single vote in Scotland or Wales has ever been cast for them. Though I can think of a disused factory near Auchtermuchty that might vote for them.

What do we know of their policies? Well we know that are very much against criticism of Israel. We know they think the Cameron coalition government did a very good job on austerity. We know they are against renationalisation of utilities and against abolition of tuition fees and against higher taxes on the rich. I am sure something will eventually distinguish them from the Tories other than Brexit, but they haven’t thought of it yet.

At some stage they will have to form a political party. Once the unbounded bias of the MSM is moderately constrained by general election rules, they will need to be a party to get broadcast time. If they enter into an alliance with the Lib Dems, they will have to split the Lib Dems broadcast time; I do not see that happening.

Has anybody heard any of the “Independent Group” ever mention Scotland, once, in the vast tsunami of media coverage they have been given? I presume at some stage, somebody will alert them to the existence of Scotland, and possibly even tell them how to come here.

The political landscape of Scotland is very different to that in England and Wales. A large majority of the left-wingers who flocked to Corbyn are, in Scotland, unavailable as they are committed to the Independence movement, myself included. Scottish Labour has therefore been led by a rump of unreconstructed Blairite careerists lurking in the branch office (that may be slightly unfair on Richard Leonard, but as I still have no idea who he is I cannot be sure). With no deselection pressures, the Labour MPs have little career incentive to move, except perhaps Ian Murray, elected very largely on Tory votes and a right winger of limited intellectual grasp anyway. The Independent Group plc is both right wing and fashionable, and therefore a perfect fit for Morningside.

Scotland’s Tory MPs are mostly, aside from the Ross Thomson testicle grabbing tendency (allegedly), on the wet side, with pro-EU voters. But their voters are rural and traditionalist and unlikely to be thrilled by the appeal of a wholly new group. It should be remembered too that, contrary to incessant MSM propaganda, the media-induced Davison “surge” peaked at 28% and is now around 25% and falling faster than a Hebridean barometer.

The Funny Tinge Corporation is nonetheless going to need to insert itself into Scotland. This cannot but be great news for the SNP. It is really simple. A unionist vote split three ways will now be split four ways which, under FPTP, is a disaster for the Unionists. The corollary is that it is more important than ever that the Yes movement stay united behind the SNP. And the further corollary of that is that the SNP must listen to the voice of the Yes movement, forget the devolution settlement and push on towards early Independence.

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672 thoughts on “The Funny Tinge Group Ltd is a Boon to the SNP

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  • Tom

    Which TINGe will be on next week? Assume it will be another ex-Labour to twist the knife Leslie amateurishly attempted to stick in Corbyn’s back last night.

      • Ian

        Funny they haven’t had the ‘balance’ to have a tory splitter on. Especially as two of the three women are far more articulate and accurate about the disastrous direction of their former party than any of the wet fish, superannuated, incoherent Labour lot.

        • Tom

          The reality is that they answer to a board that is effectively controlled by the government. It would be tempting for Labour to keep this when in power, but they have pledged to make the BBC accountable to the public by opening these positions to democratic election. Hence the increasingly strident bias within the News department.

      • Old Mark

        Indeed. Chuka, which was coincidentally already booked

        Chuka went to school in Catford – (from where next week’s edition is billed to take place) – minor public school, St Dunstans (also the alma mater of staunch ‘Atlanticist’ Matthew D’Ancona.)

        To ensure the audience is broadly supportive of their old boy the Beeb might even be using the school as the venue!

    • Ken Kenn

      And that’s allegedly the brains of the outfit.

      Even if you are an Independence supporter it has to noted that all this is to prevent a UK wide Corbyn led government ever happening.

      We have a FPTP electoral system and there is another possibility that the Labour Party may need to form a Coalition with the SNP.

      Both parties are anti – austerity ( even if they dis agree on many things ) so an attack on Corbyn is also an attack on the SNP.

      The LP made a grave error when Brown and Cameron walked up to Scotland issuing threats of an English Parliament ( as if England didn’t dominate Parliamnet already ) and they paid dearly in terms of seats won by the SNP.

      I think that Corbyn’s view of Independence is that if Scotland wants an Independence Referedum then that’s the Scot’s choice.

      He would say I think that he would rather have a United Kingdom which was Socialist ( not a la Castro – a la British Socialism ) but because Thatcher /Blair et al moved the political centre to the right Keynesianism now equals communism in the minds of the Cameronite media luvvies like Laura – Andrew Marr. Some are old enough to know better ( yes you Norman and John) but most commentators know nothing about the effect Thatcher and Blair had on British politics. they have either learnt nothing or worse know nothing about the subjects they opine on.

      The policy Elusive Eleven are in the same position and will receive disproportianate coverage from fellow know nothings.

      All the above have the courage of someone else’s convictions and receive benefits accordingly for their pains.

      Three things would cheer me up no end at the moment.

      1) May is voted down in a vote of No Confidence or calls an election herself.

      2) That a no deal is taken off the table.

      3) Scotland discovers it is sitting on a highly valuable set of mineral deposits ( not oil as Donald will send the troops )

      4) I’ll settle for a Coalition of genuine progress alongside the SNP.

      • N_

        @Ken

        Theresa May can’t call a general election. All she can do is call FOR one. The prerogative power to call an early general election was abolished by the Fixed Term Parliaments Act.

        (If you want someone to blame for the FTPA, blame the Liberal Democrats. They wanted to be able to sell their membership on the idea that the Tories wouldn’t call a snap election some time during the 5-year term of the hung parliament that was elected in 2010. They also got that stupid referendum on AV.)

        No deal is not “on the table”. It’s the default. It’s what happens – according to treaty – if there is not a deal. The only way the government can make clear that no deal won’t possibly happen under any circumstances is to say that if parliament doesn’t ratify a deal then they will either unilaterally revoke or they will request an extension and then unilaterally revoke if they don’t get one.

        That is not going to happen. Ever since the days of Michael Heseltine and Westland, and further back since the time of Edward Heath’s premiership, there has been a “love Europe” versus “hate Europe” divide in the Tory party. Every time it comes to a head, the duckspeaking opinion channellers and their hangers-on have been on the front of their seats like racing commentators, wondering which way each particular episode will end.

        And each episode has without exception always ended with a victory for “Hate Europe”. This time will be no different.

        The bunch of cheap cigarette-getting, expense-fiddling perverts adulterers liars and thieves called “MPs” (in all political parties) will NOT ride to the rescue. Britain will leave the EU, very probably in 35 days’ time from now.

        We might think of MPs as a bunch of twats who aren’t even very good at lying, or acting, or negotiating, or really at doing anything. Certainly not the kind of person you’d want to be stuck in a lift with or to invite into your house. But they mostly think of themselves as really cool gunslingers with up-to-the-minute smartphones, who have unbelievably fantastic Machiavellian negotiating skills, and great dress sense too.

        That’s why they are talking about how in negotiations you’ve always got to keep the hard option in your pocket, etc. Yeah yeah. Just ignore the idiots. Parliament is not going to take control. Parliamentary democracy is a sham.

    • Mr Shigemitsu

      “Which TINGe will be on next week?”

      Hilariously, it has been pointed out by a Twitter poster called Salvor Hardin, that “Gemini A Ltd” (the company formed by Gavin Shuker to represent the Independent Group) is an anagram of “A mild tinge”!

      YCNMIU!!

  • John2o2o

    I’m not so sure, Craig. The Labour party might benefit greatly from the purging of this Blairite poison and may ultimately even enjoy a resurgence in Scotland as a result.

    I have to say that I was deeply disappointed that Jess “I thought I was actually quite posh. I’ve realised that I’m basically a scullery maid” Phillips was not among the initial batch. (Surely an insult to scullery maids everywhere). However, if you feel that it would benefit Scottish independence then I would suggest that all write to Westminster to encourage Mrs Phillips to “take the plunge.”

    Perhaps the thorn is too deeply embedded in Labour’s side and it’s removal is too difficult to readily achieve at the present moment.

    • Muscleguy

      Only if the Blairite rump which remains in SLAB (as Craig correctly points out) decamps en mass to the FTG leaving the local party groups empty and open slather for Corbynite/Momentum entryists.

      And even then no pro indy people will go there, both Corbyn and Leonard have evidence both manifest ignorance about Devolution and are inherently opposed to a second referendum, though Corbyn has to be repeatedly reminded of this by Leonard and co.

      Corbyn is pretty much irrelevant to Scotland. When he comes here they bus in carefully selected middle aged people to constitute a pop-up audience. Members of the public with smartphones are legion and give the proper setting instead of the tight focus of the TV news etc coverage.

      Don’t be fooled by the MSM, Corbyn may well look better than the Maybot in holding outside meetings but they are carefully staged with ‘stewards’ engaged to keep potential outside sensible questioners, sorry hecklers at bay. He is just as scared of the Scottish public as May is of everyone.

      • Ian

        Corbyn and May are weirdly alike, if from opposite ends of the spectrum. Dogmatic, dissembling, dull, wholly unfit to address the problems we are faced with, immune to the majorities in their own parties, and stuck in a mindset formed 40 or 50 years ago.

  • mog

    Does this article, excellent though it is, not assume that The Oxymoron Group are intent of running for election?
    I wonder if they are merely intent on stopping Corbyn through a drip of resignations and a breaking of Labour, and come election time they’ll go to their corporate appointments.

      • S

        Actually I don’t know whether he really has mainstream political ambitions. He surely wouldn’t have pulled out of the labour leadership contest if he had those kinds of ambitions.

        • Millsy

          His only ambition appears to be ”Let me be the Leader” – the leader of any group with any bland political philosophy , as long as he can be the leader . It’s written all over his face whenever he speaks.- then the audience , thankfully , falls asleep .

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    I do not question the accuracy of the prediction, regards appearances on Question Time, but the prediction rests on an assumption that the SNP should continue to lend a veil of legitimacy to Menthorn Media by continuing to participate. If the game is rigged, why play it?
    Surely the constructive move is to boycott Question Time, issue a press release clearly stating why and encourage all other non-aligned voices for Indy to form a solid front by joining the boycott.
    I go further and say boycott BBC Scotland.
    Donalda MacKinnon has stated that an investigation into the Billy Mitchell saga has been concluded and no wrongdoing on the part of Menthorn Media was detected. This is blatant nonsense. Until the State propaganda machine is challenged nothing will change.

    • G H Graham

      I agree with every point Vivian has made. The continuation of participation in any BBC news/current affairs production/broadcast, simply lends legitimacy to a deeply corrupt, propaganda channel of the British state.

      So I cannot fathom why it remains SNP policy to engage with blatant pro BritNat zoomers like Glen “Wee man syndrome” Campbell, Union Jackie & lately Fiona “£400k/annum but an ordinary lass” Bruce.

      • Jack collatin

        Just this week, over on WGD I urged all Pro Self Determination Movement speakers to shun ‘our’ TV/Radio and Dead Tree Scrolls Brit Nat apologists’ media.
        Send a haggis along to Poundland BBC Scotland when they set up the next ‘debate’ chaired by Old Watsonian Guissler or the Monarch of the Glenn, of the Scotia Nostra.
        I’d pay to watch Old Gordon Brewdog bending over the Great Chieftain o’ the Puddin’ race snarling and belittling a bag of offal:
        ‘Yes but, don’t you think, so what you are saying is, the SNP are running scared, are a spent force, Indyref is off the table for a generation, oh how I miss my wee chats with that other lump of lard, Irn Bru Man.
        I take it from your silence that you have no answers to my probing babble, ye son of a sheep’s bladder’.

      • Republicofscotland

        Alas, the SNP doesn’t have the luxury of appearing reticent and uncooperative, when it comes to QT.

        If they did so, then the unionist programme could aim all kinds of baseless accusations against the SNP through a hand picked audience, that’s already seen QT plant Billy Mitchell, Mitchell, appeared four times on the show, without applying, Mitchell says he was invited on the programme. Of late Mr Mitchell has threatened to spill the beans on QT activities.

        No the SNP need to confront accusations, and defend policy making via the media. Not to do so, would leave the voters open to a onesided tirade from the unionist media.

        • Jo1

          I can see what Vivian is saying but your post makes valid points too RoS. It’s a tricky situation all round. Bloody infuriating tho that Donalda can just deny along with the main BBC body that QT is bent as a nine bob note and they just get away with it.

      • Vivian O'Blivion

        G H Graham.
        To speculate an answer to your question.
        The leadership of the SNP is gradualist to the core. The lessons from Irish nationalists history are that many organisations may come and go before the end goal is attained. I am increasingly convinced that the SNP is not the final route to independence. The final vehicle for independence will stop “thinking” independent and start “acting” independent.
        The Director of BBC Scotland is a wifey and on planet Nicola, any “sister” that breaks through the glass ceiling is automatically immune from criticism.

    • J

      Agreed. Nothing to lose, and much more to gain by this strategy. Guaranteed headlines and an opportunity to clarify the nature of the enemy on prime time. Which may have the side effect of generating much greater sympathy and understanding of Independence in England.

    • craig Post author

      I am not too worried as long as we can trade and move entirely freely with the EU. So full membership or a Norway or Swiss model are fine by me.

      • Reg

        Craig
        What is your view of the relative advantage of an EFTA without EEA membership such as a Swiss model, compared to a Norway type arrangement of EFTA membership with the addition of EEA membership such as a Norway/Iceland model?

        My view is that although EEA/EFTA membership makes the UK not part of the excessive deficit procedure, (although the UK has an derogation from EU imposed fines in the Lisbon treaty as a EU member). The problem is the single market requiring free movement of capital and restrictions on State Aid in a EEA type arrangement. it is true that Iceland managed to unilaterally suspend free movement of capital and allow its private banks to default citing an economic crisis that allows them to suspend free movement of capital under the EEA treaty (not allowed as a EU member as the EU commission/Trokia would have to approve this and insist on conditions). But longer term protectionism after the crisis would not be allowed under a EEA type deal. It is also worth noting Ireland was not allowed to allow its private banks to default on its no secured debt as Jean-Claude Trichet (the then head of the ECB) forced Ireland to accept the bail out entailing the full bail out of its private banks with the threat of financial sanctions such as withdrawal of liquidity from its banks as the ECB did during the Greek referendum and threatened during the Italian election.

        I regard relatively free movement of persons less of problem if we had a government committed to reducing inequality, after all Iceland is part of the Schengen area, and has the lowest levels of inequality in the OECD.

        The is however the problem of State Aid as EEA membership will require conforming to EU State Aid rules. Post Brexit with a diminished finance sector (without financial pass-porting) and with diminishing oil supplies the UK is in dire need of restructuring, this will (despite what some remainers say) violate EU state Aid rules that are much more extensive than WTO rules on State Aid.

        EFTA membership without being part of the EEA does not require conforming to EU rules on State Aid or Free movement of capital. It remains to be seen if the EU will agree to a EFTA type arrangement with a customs union while only aligning with the single market would be the preferable solution, as a EEA/EFTA arrangement is not part of a customs union, possibly with some concessions on free movement while protecting the low paid. Having to adhere to a common external tariff is relatively unproblematic as losing ability to make independent trade deals is less important than a close tariff free trading with the rest the EU as the largest trading partner although one we have a massive trade deficit with. Given your former day job, what is your view of the likelihood of the rest of the EU accepting such an arrangement?

        https://www.slaughterandmay.com/what-we-do/publications-and-seminars/publications/newsletters-and-briefings/brexit-essentials/brexit-essentials-alternatives-to-eu-membership/

        https://www.out-law.com/en/topics/eu–competition/state-aid1/-introduction-to-state-aid/

        https://www.oxera.com/agenda/brexit-implications-for-state-aid-rules/

        https://www.independent.ie/business/irish/banking-inquiry/banking-inquiry-burning-bondholders-could-have-saved-9bn-ecb-chief-trichet-bullied-ireland-34403444.html

      • giyane

        ” I am not too worried as long as we can trade and move entirely freely with the EU. So full membership or a Norway or Swiss model are fine by me ”

        All sensible people agree with you Craig. Well Mr Corbyn and me. On Radio 4 PM this evening Margaret Beckett said that Mrs May restriction of parliamentary choice to just one version of Brexit was unconstitutional. We were missing many exciting alternative possibilities because of May’s intransigence.

        Going to the wire might look like negotiating hard but in May’s case it only means she has no creative imagination about politics. This Dickensian Haversham denial of reality has scuppered the British car industry, peace in Northern Ireland and good relations with Europe for the sake of making Britain unattractive to immigrants. The most astonishing thing about her narrow remit, whether it comes from her own consciousness or imposed on her by the deep state, is its lack of charity.

        The fringe tinge are saying they didn’t enter politics to shut the door on the electorate and run the country entirely for the few who have criminally eased themselves onto the seats of power. They don’t want to be Erdogans or MbS, Xi, Putin or Assad , all permanently cast in concrete power. So I don’t agree with your mockery and picking on their individual weaknesses or foibles. I thoroughly admire their willingness to kick their leaders in the short and curlies and leave. Well done them. if only because May is ossified and fixated on a vanished dream of Empire. May Inc. is run by Shai Masot and you should defend those who have to courage to leave.

        • Reg

          How is the Norway/EEA arrangement sensible as it requires conforming to the single market involving the requirements for free movement of capital and conforming to EU requirements on State Aid that are much more onerous than under WTO rules? Why in what passes as the left is free trade Washington consensus neo-liberalism when enforced by the IMF/Wold Bank on the 3rd word wrong, but when exactly the same ‘Free Trade’ policies requiring fire sale privatisation and cuts to the minimum wage pensions unemployment benefit and medicine are enforced by the EU, they are right? The EU goes even further than IMF structural adjustment programs as the IMF has criticised the EUs approach as part of the Trokia.
          This makes no sense and is incoherent.

          • MBC

            It’s sensible for and independent Scotland (it would allow us to avoid CAP and CFP) but it’s not sensible for the UK. Because as a full member the UK enjoys considerable influence at the top table, being a country of 63 million.

          • Reg

            MBC
            But has the influence that the UK had on the EU been positive in the UK (with Germany) pushing the EU in a more neo-liberal direction? Given this it might be more possible to push the EU in a less neo-liberal direction without the UK. Although given the structure of the EU makes this difficult, read the Lisbon Treaty. The other advantage for the UK with or without Scotland is leaving the EU will deprive the UK with financial pass-porting which will cause the city of London to shrink as being a money laundering/tax evasion entreport into the EU for US banks will be more difficult. This will require long needed massive restructuring of the UK economy.
            This is because free movement of capital guaranteed by the single market is essential to the big banks. This is why all the big US banks funded remain. The Brexiteers wanting Singapore on Thames as a Tax Haven are going to be sorely disappointed, particularly without a majority after the 2017 election.

            http://en.euabc.com/upload/books/lisbon-treaty-3edition.pdf

  • Rhys Jaggar

    I am afraid Fiona Bruce is extremely bad at honouring the BBC charter. 17m+ more people voted for Brexit than voted for 10 MPs, yet they are always in the minority when it comes to panellists representing their views.

    Andrew Neil has had the media student Fran Unsworth kick This Week from under him, no doubt to be replaced by more Marr-esque biased pro-EU programming. At least Neil was vaguely even handed. Democracy and the BBC are not on speaking terms, let alone getting down and dirty together.

    I can see 5 million plus households refusing to pay the BBC license fee by 2025.

      • N_

        During the independence referendum the SNP promised that Scottish people’s experience of the BBC would stay the same. (That was along with NATO and the monarchy.) They thought they could win over some soft Unionists by saying that. That means continuing the licence fee.

        Personally I’ve never paid the licence fee because I haven’t got TV.

        There’s an interesting difference between Scottish and English law regarding the hassle that TV licencing inspectors can subject people to. I haven’t got time to go into it here. I mean lawful hassle. Some licencing inspectors have been convicted of fraud and even rape.

    • Garth Carthy

      @ Rhys Jagger
      “I can see 5 million plus households refusing to pay the BBC license fee by 2025.”

      Yes. I suppose if the UK wasn’t so corrupt, it should possible in theory, to sue the BBC for breach of contract (on multiple and on-going occasions).

    • Peter

      “Andrew Neil has had the media student Fran Unsworth kick This Week from under him”

      He seems, unless I am mistaken, to be getting the elbow from Politics Live as well in favour of the pathologically on-script Robo-Joco.

      Whatever the pros and cons of Neil, the BBC’s “best” political presenter and interviewer in my view, he almost certainly would refuse to be held to a script and I wonder if he has ever been forgiven for his effortless taking apart of May during his live election interview in 2017:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZandgE04sI&t=16s

  • Republicofscotland

    This appears to be rather interesting.

    “A former Labour MP who now belongs to the recently formed Parliamentary organisation, The Independent Group, attempted to illegally access confidential data belonging to the Labour Party, according to party sources.”

    “Following the alleged illegal breach by one of their former colleagues, the Labour Party were forced to completely shut down two of their major online campaigning tools, Organise and Contact Creator.”

    https://evolvepolitics.com/ex-labour-independent-group-mp-attempts-to-illegally-access-confidential-labour-data/

  • N_

    The White Phosphorus Group, aka Funny Tint Group (TIG), are polling at about 3-5 times the SNP’s figure. TIG are at 8%-14%. The SNP are at 3%. The only reason the SNP has so many MPs is because their support is concentrated in an area that accounts for a very small proportion, about a tenth, of Commons seats. Britain is not a federation.

  • Matt

    “Dir. Chai Masot” made me chuckle. Unfortunate nobody with a reputation to maintain can say such things without apologising. Thank goodness for Craig!

  • johnrobertson834

    Ash Sarkar had just described her dad as ‘white, no, more pink’ just before Smith got mixed-up. That’s what she meant by funny tinged not kinds of brown. She is many things but that was not racist.

    • joel

      Sure, a very understandable slip of the tongue that every anti racist makes from time to time. Cannot seriously be viewed in the same grave terms as the disgusting racism of Corbyn, Hatton etc.

    • Shadiya Kingerlee

      With respect, “white/pink” is an attempt to be factually accurate. A “funny tinge”, on the other hand, does not refer to any colour combo I’m familiar with. I suppose it’s possible that she meant she finds there is something intrinsically amusing about those of us with brown skin, but it seems a tad more likely that she meant funny as in “this milk smells a bit funny”. I must have a chip on my shoulder to think that’s a bit off…..

  • J Galt

    Now twelve lost deposits.

    Mind you the latest one has decided to stay out of the Tinge PLC.

    The stink must be too much for even him!

  • Maya

    If they form a party and say that they’ll stop Brexit then they have my vote. We can always vote them out again later but we need to put this racist far right nonsense behind us and start preparing for environmental breakdown right now.

    If you think the lack of agreement on Brexit is bad just wait until the populace and whatever government there is have to start rapidly adjusting and legislating for the resulting horrors of the fast changing climate that will be unfolding in the coming decades.

    • N_

      The TIGgers are “friends of I__ael”. That means they ARE racist and far right.

      The climate has always changed and always will. Damned good thing too! Let’s have some respect for nature and how she changes.

      Green politics comes from Walther Darré.

      • Maya

        The climate does always change but unfortunately humans and especially modern urban civilisations are only adapted to survive in a very narrow range of environmental parameters and things are going to go downhill very rapidly. And once the trucks stop regularly delivering food to the big cities things aren’t going to be pleasant.

      • Clark

        N_, you’re very engaged politically, but you’re neglecting science. The argument you just repeated “the climate has always changed and always will” is a propagandistic slogan popularised by corporate forces to influence policy and defeat regulation, and it has worked spectacularly well (even Marxists such as yourself are repeating it); corrective action has been hobbled for decades, and now we have a global crisis.

        The environmental crisis is extremely serious. From the perspective of our individual lifetimes, climatic change seems slow, but in the geological perspective, no change as rapid as this has ever occurred. Please check the following graph, and note that the current rise in CO2 concentration appears vertical, ie. instantaneous:

        https://scripps.ucsd.edu/programs/keelingclone/wp-content/plugins/sio-bluemoon/graphs/co2_800k.pdf

        That’s ‘just’ climate. We also have sudden collapse of insect populations, some 60% decline in wild animal populations, ocean acidification, and the species extinction rate is about two thousand times faster than normal.

        Politics will become entirely irrelevant unless it manages to fix this.

          • Deb O'Nair

            What I never hear being considered regarding CO2 increase is the huge swaths of the ocean which have been decimated, particularly over the last 40 years, by pollution, over-fishing and now carbolic acidification. As the oceans are the greatest CO2 sink on the earth perhaps more focus should be put on protecting and regenerating marine life. If people could actually see how much marine life has been destroyed, as with rain forests, they would be a lot more concerned about the damage that is being done. I believe that the focus solely on CO2 emissions (and other greenhouse gases) has been a massive mistake, CO2 increases, climate change and mass extinction are a symptom of the entire biosphere in terminal decline. Fixing one symptom of a systemic problem will not solve the problem.

          • Clark

            Deb O’Nair, I agree that environmental destruction is many faceted. But the concentration upon CO2 is not the scientists’ fault; it is because the massive lobby groups extensively funded by the fossil fuel industry has put so much effort into corrupting the public understanding of the science involved. You can see a very clear example below; I deliberately mentioned: “sudden collapse of insect populations, some 60% decline in wild animal populations, ocean acidification, and the species extinction rate is about two thousand times faster than normal” – and almost immediately Blunderbuss arrived and started spreading disinformation about, specifically, CO2.

        • Loony

          Yeah sure, but what exactly do you think can be done about all of this. Globally something over $300 billion per year is being invested in renewable power. Bear that in mind when you look at this graph of global emissions

          https://www.carbonbrief.org/analysis-fossil-fuel-emissions-in-2018-increasing-at-fastest-rate-for-seven-years

          You will note that since 1960 global emissions have almost quadrupled – and the trend is inexorably rising.

          Take a look at the average per capita fossil fuel consumption in say Somalia and compare that with per capita fossil fuel consumption in say Sweden. Do you really think anyone is going to stop immigration? The answer is no.

          You can manufacture things more environmentally efficiently in the US than in China. Is anyone going to relocate industrial plant from the US to China? No is the answer.

          You take away peoples domestic heating and take their cars away. What do you imagine will happen next -apart from mass riots and people screaming about fascists and injustice.

          Nothing can be done about this. The system cannot reform itself and cannot be replaced absent killing over 50% of current global population. Even if you try to exterminate over half the population then people will resist and it is highly likely that their resistance will increase emissions.

          Talking about climate change is as useful as talking about the fact that at some point the Sun will die.

          • Blunderbuss

            No need to worry, Loony. Humans are not causing global warming and our carbon dioxide production is too small to matter.

            Global warming comes first, then rising carbon dioxide levels come about 800 years later, due to release of carbon dioxide from deep oceans.

            The rising carbon dioxide levels observed now are due to global warming which happened 800 years ago during the Medieval Warm Period, c.950 to c.1250 A.D.

          • Clark

            Loony, there is massive potential to reduce environmental damage. Our consumerist economy is based on deliberately encouraging excessive consumption, merely to move money around. To that end, things are even designed to break or become obsolete; try keeping a perfectly working computer or iPhone, and discover that it’s the updates that make it unusable. In the UK private transport has been prioritised over public transport by multiple government policies.

            Blunderbuss, I have poured my time and effort into attempting honest conversation with you, and time and time again you have made that impossible. Consequently I have become convinced that you are misleading the readership deliberately. You claimed to be bored, but not too bored to have another go, I see:

            https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2019/02/craig-is-in-jacobabad/comment-page-7/#comment-831820

          • Clark

            Whether you will agree to meet me or not, please return to the thread I linked above where this ‘debate’ will not be intruding upon the current topic.

          • glenn_nl

            Blunderbus is either very stupid, very intellectually dishonest, extremely lazy or simply a liar, when it comes to the disinformation he is putting out here.

            You’ve done your best, Clark, but you’re not going to get any honesty out of this fraud.

          • Blunderbuss

            @Clark

            “Blunderbuss, I wish us to arrange to meet in a public place. I suggest London”.

            No. Why should I waste my time meeting a person who continually insults me?

          • Blunderbuss

            @Clark

            “Whether you will agree to meet me or not, please return to the thread I linked above where this ‘debate’ will not be intruding upon the current topic”.

            No. I’m not going to let you set the agenda.

          • Clark

            Blunderbuss, I am sorry that you feel insulted, but deception is deception, whether it is deliberate or not.

            You have claimed to be a minor politician. Is that so, and in what capacity do you serve?

          • Clark

            “On what basis do you claim that “Carbon rises 800 years after temperatures” is disinformation?”

            On the basis that over 95% of expert scientists who have studied the matter have come to the opposite conclusion.

          • Blunderbuss

            @Clark

            “On the basis that over 95% of expert scientists who have studied the matter have come to the opposite conclusion”.

            Irrelevant. Science is not decided by a majority vote.

          • Clark

            MODERATORS AND CRAIG

            Blunderbuss – “No. I’m not going to let you set the agenda.”

            https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2019/02/the-funny-tinge-group-ltd-is-a-boon-to-the-snp/comment-page-1/#comment-833405

            Please note that it is not me that is trying to force this issue onto the front thread; Blunderbuss presumably seeks exposure for this deception, and is using this blog merely as a vehicle. Note also the paucity of Blunderbuss’s political contributions; Blunderbuss is effectively a single-issue username.

          • Blunderbuss

            @Clark

            “You have claimed to be a minor politician. Is that so, and in what capacity do you serve?”

            Why? Do you want to try and stop me getting elected?

          • Clark

            Blunderbuss, what problems do you see with using both temperature and CO2 concentration data from a single site (Vostok)?

          • Blunderbuss

            @Clark

            “Blunderbuss is effectively a single-issue username.”

            No I’m not. I’ve commented on lots of things.

          • Clark

            I think your electorate have a right to know where you stand on global environmental breakdown. If that stops you getting elected, so be it; this is what democracy looks like.

          • glenn_nl

            BB: “Why? Do you want to try and stop me getting elected?”

            The only people with your criminally irresponsible climate denial policies are members of the US Republican Party. That is because they are immensely corrupt.

            So if you share their motives, you should indeed be exposed and prevented from holding any political office.

            You and Trump / US Republicans. Nice philosophical company you keep.

          • Clark

            Yes, you have posted inane, throw-away points on various issues. I have never seen you post information, a link, or a substantive argument on anything other than global warming, on which you post arguments characterised by superficial plausibility; things that seem like science but on closer inspection are misleading.

            You consistently resist that closer inspection. You refuse to engage.

          • Blunderbuss

            @Clark

            “Blunderbuss, what problems do you see with using both temperature and CO2 concentration data from a single site (Vostok)?”

            Since you are trying to get me banned from this site with the (false) claim that I am a single-issue username, I’m not going to say any more about climate change for now.

          • Blunderbuss

            @glenn_nl

            “The only people with your criminally irresponsible climate denial policies are members of the US Republican Party.”

            You are ill-informed. There is considerable opposition to the CO2 theory in Canada, Australia and Great Britain but few people are aware of this because the MSM don’t report it.

          • Clark

            Blunderbuss – “Since you are trying to get me banned from this site […] I’m not going to say any more about climate change for now”

            I have already suggested another option; return to our previous thread, where our discussion would not be breaking moderation rules.

            https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2019/02/craig-is-in-jacobabad/comment-page-7/#comment-831820

            People interested in the Vostok ice core data should read this thread:

            https://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/2017/06/18/what-does-the-vostok-ice-core-tell-us/

            ” this is data from a single site (Vostok). Even though greenhouse gases may be well-mixed, the temperature is not. You need to be a little careful when using this single site to infer something about global temperatures, and the relationship between temperature changes and CO2/CH4 changes”

          • glenn_nl

            BB: “No need to worry, Loony. Humans are not causing global warming and our carbon dioxide production is too small to matter.

            Ja – right there. That’s _precisely_ the line the denial industry wants to promote – hey, don’t do a thing. We’re fine. Just carry on, (our!) business as usual, folks – don’t listen to scientists, ecologists or anyone else. We’re making goddamned good money with the way we do business, and we wouldn’t want to change that, would we?

            https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/exxon-knew-about-climate-change-almost-40-years-ago/


            Exxon was aware of climate change, as early as 1977, 11 years before it became a public issue, according to a recent investigation from InsideClimate News. This knowledge did not prevent the company (now ExxonMobil and the world’s largest oil and gas company) from spending decades refusing to publicly acknowledge climate change and even promoting climate misinformation—an approach many have likened to the lies spread by the tobacco industry regarding the health risks of smoking. Both industries were conscious that their products wouldn’t stay profitable once the world understood the risks, so much so that they used the same consultants to develop strategies on how to communicate with the public.

            This is the work BB is undertaking, either through sheer stupidity or corruption.

          • Clark

            Blunderbuss – “There is considerable opposition to the CO2 theory in Canada, Australia and Great Britain but few people are aware of this because the MSM don’t report it”

            In the scientific literature, the appropriate forum for such discussion, this was debated to a conclusion years ago. The MSM continued to apply false balance, which is why the global warming denialists, with great irresponsibility, took to presenting their nonsense directly to the public, much like direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising in the USA.

          • glenn_nl

            Just to counter another point of misinformation BB puts out – there is only one political party which has a platform for denying climate change. The US Republicans. If BB has the same aims, he is aligned with them.

            BB, of course, sneakily pretends the point was about individuals, and denies that instead. Slippery bastard.

          • glenn_nl

            BB: “Wrong. UKIP says: “We think the relation between human activity and CO2 levels is open to question”.

            FFS… the only major political party – you know, the sort that’s actually in charge of anything. UKIP doesn’t have that many MPs, does it?

            So you’re politically aligned with the US Republicans, Trump in particular, and UKIP. You must be proud!

          • glenn_nl

            Clark: Notice a trick here?

            BB comes up with some talking points to cast doubt about climate change, and its causes and implications.

            After running people around in circles – you in particular – BB just settles on the latest silly argument you just cannot bother to have your time wasted any more, with BB playing dumb or just running off.

            So he crows with, “Oh – you cannot explain how …. CO2 lags behind warming [or whatever]…”

            If you take it on, he will drop it again – and set up the next, if not an earlier silly point. If you don’t, he’ll start crowing.

          • Clark

            Glenn_nl, yes I have noticed; it seems to be a standard technique for manufacturing doubt – present a false claim, and when it’s shown to be false make some personal complaint (you’re obsessed with winning, you’re opposed to freedom of speech, your god is the IPCC etc.) and then move on to the next false claim. Never retract, so you can always reuse the same wrong argument again, eg. “our carbon dioxide production is too small to matter”, Dave’s original “elementary” argument, repeated by Blunderbuss at the top of this thread.

            A dozen false arguments do not defeat one right argument so scientifically they are meaningless, but they’re good at inducing doubt among non-specialists and can thus influence voting and policy.

            Blunderbuss refuses to retract disproven arguments, and refuses to examine any previous points in greater detail. For instance, I made this prediction:

            “Blunderbuss, I’m going to take a guess here that Kenneth Richard chose his start and end points rather carefully out of the overall, continuous temperature record to get the effect he was looking for, choosing local maxima and local minima”

            https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/09/soft-focus/comment-page-4/#comment-784575

            So yesterday evening I went and checked the HadCRUT3 temperature graph, and that is exactly what Kenneth Richard had done. 1850 and 2014 are the start and end of the data, so 1910, 1940, 1977 and 2001 were picked by Richard, and look where they are on the curve (the bottom graph is the global one):

            https://crudata.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/crutem3/HadCRUT3.pdf

    • Dungroanin

      Not buying – inane wishful claptrap.

      There is no party except the one in government that can stop brexit.

      To change a government takes 5 weeks – if you can arrange an election today, you may get a change of government before brexit day.

      • Maya

        Well, it would involve an extension of A50 and a lot of other stuff going right but hey you’ve got to be able to dream

    • Spaull

      Maya, they won’t stop Brexit. They have committed not to bring down May. This means we are guaranteed either May’s deal or no deal.

      The problem is that for all their professed opposition to Brexit, their hatred of Corbyn is stronger, and has led to them vowing not to do the one thing that is essential if Brexit is to be stopped.

  • N_

    A Scottish nationalist party with seats only in Scotland is local. A party with seats all over England and which is not English nationalist, Cornish regionalist, Wessex regionalist, etc. (and as far as I am aware no such party has ever won any seats at all) is not local.

    The SNP has never polled more than a small proportion of the support for the Liberal Democrats and their predecessors the Liberals. We all know they are quite big locally.

  • S

    You say “Not a single vote in Scotland or Wales has ever been cast for them.” But not a single vote has been cast for them in England or NI either! Ideally they will get demolished on QT, but I won’t be watching it.

  • N_

    “Dir. Shai Masot”.

    Sure…and then there’s an important question: what do we think the Z__nists’ aim is regarding Brexit? What are they actually up to with creating the new “centrist” grouping of MPs?

    The aim is unlikely to be stopping Brexit, delaying Brexit, or even ruling out a “no deal” Brexit.

    Clue: on Monday Liam Fox was in occupied Jerusalem signing a “trade continuity” agreement between Britain and the Z__nists that will come into effect after Brexit.

    This will include the British import of pharmaceuticals from the Z__nist entity. In 2018 British trade with I__ael increased by 15%.

    Liam Fox publicly grovelled to his I__aeli counterpart after the document was signed. “A special thanks to my Israeli counterpart @elicoh1 for his hard work”, he wrote. Oh thank you, thank you, master!

    Can anyone think of a precedent for this kind of grovelling when one supposedly sovereign country has just signed an agreement with another sovereign country?

  • Jack

    “What do we know of their policies? Well we know that are very much against criticism of Israel. ”

    It is just a matter of time before this (see below) occur in UK and elsewhere in europe:

    ” France will additionally take steps to define “anti-Zionism as a modern-day form of anti-Semitism”, Macron told the French Jewish groups gathered on Wednesday. The definition is in line with that advocated by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, Macron said.”

    https://www.france24.com/en/20190220-macron-announces-measures-combat-anti-semitism-france-crif-definition-anti-zionism

  • Jo1

    Isn’t it interesting that Smith’s clanger about, “funny tinge….” people has been forgotten about so quickly in the media?

    • Eric the Half Bee

      Yes, isn’t it? It’s almost as if something that was marginally newsworthy on Wednesday is no longer newsworthy on Friday, because other things have happened meanwhile.

  • Jo1

    I thought Andy McDonald managed Chris Leslie very well last night. (He managed Fiona Bruce well too!).

    Leslie was clearly nervous and seeking to present the, “I’m a really nice guy.” look. The mask slipped later, however, when he attacked Shami Chakrabarti – in her absence – by sniping at McDonald that she was actually Baroness Chakrabarti. That really didn’t go down well even with the audience. McDonald dealt with him accordingly.

    It is interesting that this new group are presenting themselves as squeaky clean and civilised yet Leslie and the rest of them have done little else all week but cast slurs on other people. Incredibly, their chief defender is the current Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, who won’t even accept that the constituents of these MPs have a right to endorse their decision to leave…or not.

    • Eric the Half Bee

      But she is actually Baroness Shakrabarti. It was her reward for producing her whitewash on anti-Semitism in the Labour Party. Is it now a slur to refer to people by their correct titles?

      • joel

        Eric, at 12:45 you we’re seeking to dismiss Angela Smith’s racist remark as marginally newsworthy. Now you expect to be taken seriously as somebody who is concerned about antisemitism not being taken seriously enough.

      • Jo1

        He was taking potshots at former colleagues while complaining about people taking potshots at him! Talk about double standards.

        On this constant anti-Semitism stuff, if you truly want to run with that smear, if the media wants to do the same, it might be in the interests of honesty if someone produced some evidence of it.

        There is, bizarrely, plenty of evidence to disprove it in Corbyn’s case but the media don’t seem to want to highlight this. Now I can understand politicians being liars…but the media seem happy to peddle the lies. That concerns me. The Labour Party has made changes to the way complaints are dealt with. A full report was issued in the last ten days by the woman who is in charge of these matters. Did you even read it?

        Chris Leslie was casting slurs all over the place last night while complaining about, yes, personal slurs! That is hypocrisy.

    • Sharp Ears

      Watson is in the Labour Friends of Israel grouping and vice chair of Trade Union Friends of Israel.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOfNX8ilAQ4

      As described in the JC.

      ‘The Israeli visit was Mr Watson’s first foreign trip as deputy leader. He is a long-standing supporter of LFI and vice-chair of Trade Union Friends of Israel.’

      November 17, 2016
      https://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/tom-watson-heads-labour-visit-to-israel-1.54948

      Why doesn’t Corbyn boot him off the front bench? Deputy Leader indeed. It’s a sick joke on the Palestinians.

  • Mist001

    I’m stunned that there is still support for the SNP from independence supporters. The SNP are the least likely option to achieve independence for Scotland. Look at the facts. Understand the facts about this cult.

    Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP are all doing their damnedest to stop Brexit to ensure that the UK remains a member state of the EU.

    Nicolas has three (yes, count them) constant soundbites. The first is that the SNP are acting in the best interests of the the Scottish people. The second soundbite is that the majority of Scotland voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU. (the third soundbite is “I’ll make a statement about independence when the details of Brexit become clearer OR in the coming weeks).

    But here are the catches:

    One: The majority of Scottish people rejected independence and voted to remain a part of the UK. Like it or not (personally, I found it shameful), that’s what happened because Scots felt it was in their best interests to remain as part of the UK. So if Nicola and the SNP are acting in the best interests of the Scottish people, how are they going to go against that and pursue independence? They won’t be acting in the best interests of the Scottish people, they’d be acting on behalf of a minority of Scottish people.

    Two: It may well be true that the majority of Scots voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU but that’s because the SNP have been perpetuating lies over this. The first lie that they do nothing to discourage is that by stopping Brexit, Scotland will remain in the EU. That’s impossible because Scotland has never been in the EU. By the same token, neither has England, Wales or NI. It’s the United Kingdom which is the member state, not the ‘regional areas’ or individual nations. You can’t remain in something of which you’ve never been a member.

    Three: Another lie which the SNP does nothing to discourage is the fact that an independent Scotland will be out of the UK. Independence or Brexit, it makes no difference, the end result is the same. Scotland will be out of the EU. So here we have it. Nicola Sturgeon and the entire SNP HAVE to know that the only way for Scotland to remain a PART (not a member) of the EU is to remain a part of the UK. They KNOW this because if they don’t, they shouldn’t even be involved in independence. That means you have to question why Nicola and the SNP are trying their hardest to stop Brexit when they know it means Scotland remaining a part of the UK.

    Every sinle SNP MSP will REFUSE to even consider this question, let alone answer it and as a result, they’re masquerading as politicians acting in Scotlands best interests, they’re lying to the SNP membership and they’re lying to the Scottish people by not being clear and publicly addressing these problems.

    Brexit should have been a golden opportunity to gain independence but instead, we’ve watched Nicola Sturgeon doing her very best to keep Scotland as a part of the UK.

    They are charlatans who have become a cult and the only reason they even mention independence is to keep the membership happy and thus keep the funds flowing into the party coffers and that’s what it’s all about. The SNP are an establishment party with exactly the same motives as the newly formed ‘Independence Group’. ie MONEY.

    People wake up. The SNP are NOT the party to achieve independence for Scotland.

    • Mist001

      All these acronyms, it’s hard to keep up! It’s not Nicolas, it’s Nicola and this: ‘Another lie which the SNP does nothing to discourage is the fact that an independent Scotland will be out of the UK’, I meant to say EU.

        • alwi

          Again banging on with the nonsensical claim that the SNP will be taking us out of the EU. As has been shown before, an independent Scotland’s EU membership will be a formality.

  • 'rural traditionalist'

    As a “rural traditionalist” I met the Secretary of State for Scotland some time bak and he made no bones about disowning all the “red bus promises” of the Brexit referendum campaign – despite these having been made by his very own Right Honourable parliamentary friends and colleagues.
    I have always tend to think that independence would be bad for the people of Scotland as opposed to the careerist elite and the landlords of Edinburgh, but I can’t stomach the way in which a foreign power now seems to be infiltrating and disrupting our national politics in pursuit of its own interest, which is of vanishingly little significance to nearly all the 62m people of the UK.
    I don’t rate Corbyn as a leader but he is democratically elected (twice by his party) and is offering constitutional opposition to the ruling liberal capitalist orthodoxy. If he is thwarted who will take up the banner, or does it have to come to violence before the parasitic rentier class are brought to heel? As Craig says, the only way for Scotland to get away from this is independence.

  • Peter

    Umunna’s sly, smug grin, along with his comment that ‘we don’t have to say and anyways we have crowdfunding now’, whenever anyone asks him about his group’s funding is unmistakeable.

    Someone somewhere should seek an answer to that question. I’m sure the answer would be very “illuminating”.

  • remember kronstadt

    Craig, I think you have a mistaken idea of what the BBC, in particular Question Time, is. It is an entertainment ‘tabloid’ that comprises clowns, gravitas fakers, pop personalities and ‘rent a reliable gob’ cast who provide entertainment and distraction not enlightenment and thought.

    • leonard young

      ” think you have a mistaken idea of what the BBC, in particular Question Time, is”

      It might well be an entertainment tabloid, but it is the only prime time “debating” vehicle for millions who never venture into places like this, So it does matter what is discussed there and elsewhere on the beeb, because a large portion of voters, for some mad reason, still trust it. The last time Craig was invited on a top tier mainstream BBC broadcast (if memory serves) was Newsnight years ago discussing Assange’s accusers and he was cut off after the first eight seconds for the bogus reason of sub judice.

      What can be done? If you boycott the Beeb things could be even worse. If you play their game you are compromised. It is an impossible dilemma.

  • Komodo

    I like ‘Funny Tinge Group’, but I like ‘The Independent Tossers’ (TIT) better.
    In other news (see Blair Miles/An Apology) we have the Blessed Tone opining that Labour f**ked the pooch in Scotland because it wasn’t centrist enough! Jim Murphy and Kezia Dugdale, you raving Trotskyite anarcho-syndicalists, consider yourselves upbraided…

  • Karl

    From this side of the Pond, I’ve been calling them (and the people who give them vast coverage) the “Labour For The Few” Group.

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