Thoughts on UK Politics 506


3.1% of those eligible to vote bothered to go to a polling station and vote Tory in an important UK wide election last week. That’s 1 voter in every 33. Yet the Tory Party is shortly going to choose internally, from within its despised ranks, the next Prime Minister of the UK, even though that Tory Party does not even command a majority at Westminster. That is how dysfunctional the UK constitution has become.

Meantime the SNP were runaway victors in Scotland and Sinn Fein topped the poll on first preferences in Northern Ireland. The UK is disintegrating before our eyes. I pray the SNP leadership finally discovers the courage to seize the moment.

There is a huge amount of wishful thinking in the popular twitter meme that SNP, Libdem, Change plus Green votes just outweigh Brexit plus UKIP votes. This wilfully ignores the fact that a very high percentage of the residual Tory vote are Brexiteers- their Remainers have, like Heseltine, decamped their vote to the LibDems. Any Remainer voting Tory would be certifiable.

The figures are also distorted by adding in Scotland. In Scotland the SNP, Green and Lib Dem vote outweighed the Brexit and Ukip vote by a massive four to one. Scotland being 11% of the total vote in this election, that tilts the overall calculation towards Remain by a full net 5% (duly allowing for the small Tory and Labour votes in Scotland). If you do the figures for England alone, it is absolutely plain that the people of England wish to Brexit. Nobody has the right to stop England from Brexiting as it wishes. What is needed is a mature and friendly acceptance that this means the UK must split.

I stood twice for election in Parliamentary elections in England as an independent anti-war candidate. The first time, in Blackburn in 2005, the BBC broadcast a radio debate between the candidates but excluded me on the basis that I had “no evidence of popular support.” I polled 5.0%.

When I stood later in Norwich, the same thing happened again, and I pointed out that I had obtained 5% in Blackburn. The BBC told me that 5% was not enough public support to be given airtime.

I shall be fascinated to see if they apply that to Change UK and their 3%. Don’t hold your breath. I am rather proud that just on my own, with a few blog readers helping, I am more popular with the electorate than this massively hyped new political party.

I was a Liberal, then a Liberal Democrat, member for over 30 years. I made the stupid mistake of not realising how far the party had moved to the right during my years of working abroad, and anyone who has any understanding of history will know that for the party of Gladstone, Rosebery and Home Rule to brand itself as a Unionist party is an abomination. So there is little remaining affection, but nevertheless I would advise my remaining LibDem friends not to contemplate any kind of merger, alliance or accommodation with ChangeUK.

The LibDems are on the up, whereas ChangeUK are on the way to oblivion. Politically ChangeUK, with its unrepentant Tories and the right of the right wing Blairites, would drag the LibDems still further rightward and make remote the chance of living down the coalition betrayals that almost destroyed the party. Finally, why the LibDems would want to import the most virulent and corrupt pro-Israel lobbying in the UK into the party is beyond me. ChangeUK should simply be ignored on its route to entirely deserved extinction.


506 thoughts on “Thoughts on UK Politics

1 2 3 4
  • Peter wright

    Look at the UK votes in general , the rest of the country outside London voted 180 deg in the other direction, this shows clearly that the ruling class in this dump of arrogance thinks that their way is the right one , the vote stated clearly they are wrong.

    Please do not forget for billions of pounds from the whole of the UK’s tax payers the project cross rail is being done reason? The ritch have systematically exported 20 million peop,e out of London to the north over the past 40 years as as they left the houses have been bulldozed and replaced by luxury mansions and now the ritch have a problem getting slaves to clean their toilets and cook their food so they need cross rail to import every day poorly paid decent human beings to make their lives nice! . I heard the other day a comment from one of them suggesting to combat I life crime making parts of London gated communities, a massive trade in bodyguards is emerging for the ritch to be protected when moving on the streets or using the underground as well as the massive rise in the use of SUV,s in London’s road traffic. So what do conservative politicians do in London, that is unthinkable or!

    Today’s TV talk show quagmire has an interesting twist from Ries mogg , conservatives know they are fucked so the tactic appears to be support Jeremy Corbyn at the next election as it’s far better than the 2 party system being smashed completely , yes folks pushing the enemy is a better idea when faced with binning of both and a new none controllable future looming that will be better for the nation

    • Xavi

      You’ve got that wrong i’m afraid. Corbyn represents the only chance of a break from the established Thatcherite neo-imperialist order. The Brexit party and the Liberal Democrats support the Tories’ economic agenda to the hilt while the rest of the so called insurgent parties would be all in for any war Washington ordered us to participate in.

      • Loony

        Corbyn offers no chance at all.

        The EU is a central component of the “neo-imperialist order” If you can smash the EU then maybe you can smash NATO. You certainly cannot dismantle NATO for so long as the EU exists. In simple terms support for the EU is exactly equal to support for NATO.

        NATO is the preferred mechanism for the launching of wars. Therefore support for the EU equals support for NATO equals support for war.

        Corbyn knows all of this – but what does he say? Answer nothing at all. Ask why

          • Loony

            Name one war that Corbyn’s opposition stopped from happening. The answer is none, and so his opposition is wholly ineffective and hence wholly pointless.

            Even his pointless and ineffective opposition amounts to less than the ineffective and pointless opposition of others. For example George Galloway was expelled from the Labour Party for opposing the Iraq war. Corbyn was not.

            Anything that you suspect about me is totally valueless absent evidence, of which you have none. Don’t you see that making wild assumptions absent evidence is exactly analogous to the mode of thinking that has created so many wars. So desperate are you and your ilk for your crazed suspicions to accord to reality that you are prepared to ensure that others sacrifice without limit on the bonfire of your own egos.

          • Xavi

            His opposition would obviously carry a mite more significance as PM than as an isolated, derided backbencher. I certainly apologise if I wrongly assumed war hunger on your part. But in my experience support for Tommy Robinson and his negative obsession with Muslims usually does go hand in hand with ardency for bombing them.

        • Laguerre

          “In simple terms support for the EU is exactly equal to support for NATO.”

          I’m surprised you confuse the EU and NATO. They’re very different interests. NATO is a vehicle of US policy, and carries out US wishes. The EU is seen as a rival of the US, and is regarded as an enemy.

          • Loony

            The EU has its genesis not in Europe but in Langley Virginia.

            How can you support the EU when you don’t even know the agency that spawned it?

          • Laguerre

            True, the Americans invented everything, according to themselves. They also run everything, and are omnipotent, again according to themselves, including many Americans who are totally opposed to the Washington regime.

          • Terence Wallis

            I thought the genesis of the EU was the Nazi 1942 Europa plan which was adopted by the Amerikans at the end of WW2 to cobble a bulwark against the Russians who had beaten the Germans ? They hated the British who had an Empire & loathed the French so put the Germans in charge of the new set-up. Thus it is said Germany won WW2.

      • Jo1

        Xavi
        Corbyn cannot succeed. His main enemies are either sitting beside him or on the benches behind him. We have seen that over, what, nearly four years now? They are prepared to do anything to bring him down, anything. The Deputy Leader, Watson, has even threatened to set up an alternative group within the PLP. Once upon a time he would have been expelled immediately for that. But, no, he’s still running riot. I really cannot see how Corbyn can achieve anything. The people I’m talking about believe in all the things you’ve listed. I’ve said before on this blog that the plan of the so-called “moderates”, ultimately, is to bring the other Miliband back as leader. I still believe that.

        I hope that before they do finally bring Corbyn down he has at least one very public go at them. For truly they deserve to be exposed as the treacherous individuals they are.

        • Goose

          Corbyn is too easy-going.

          He didn’t defend his key ally and friend Chris Williamson, in what was a ludicrous suspension, for simply saying, ‘given Labour’s proud record fighting discrimination they have been too apologetic [over antisemitism allegations].’ Others in the PLP are allowed to hurl abuse at the membership and leader without any disciplinary action.

          The one thing he needed to do above everything else, was introduce Open democratic selection for GE candidates, then local parties could have weeded out the Blairites fairly and democratically. Why he’s avoided doing this, is baffling. If he feared them joining ChangeUK that fear should no longer worry him.

          • sc

            I don’t think the leader of the Labour Party has the power to affect these things directly himself. Labour is quite complicated in structure. The bureaucracy of disciplinary matters is separate, I believe the General Secretary Jennie Formby oversees that, and I think the open selection plan probably needs to be voted for.

        • Sharp Ears

          Watson is in receipt of +£175k from the unions He is also a member of Trades Union Friends of Israel.

          • Jo1

            SE, yep, his personal donations are fascinating… another area screaming out for reform.

          • Deb O'Nair

            The £500,000 from racist son of fascist leader Oswald Mosley defies any kind of reason, logic or sense.

        • Xavi

          Do not rule him out Jo. His opponents cannot compete in terms of popular policies, while he and his advisors have been around a long time and are a good deal smarter than most of those arraigned against them.

          • Goose

            @Xavi

            Winning is one thing, being allowed to govern by what is still predominantly a Blairite PLP, is quite another. @Jo1 is right imho, in that he(Corbyn) may win only to be deposed, as Theresa May has been, from the leadership by a PLP who are probably privately assessing how they’ll go about it.

            The only thing that scares the Blairite MPs is Open Selection – something Chris Williamson has tirelessly campaigned for, hence their joy at his suspension. Introduce Open Selection and they’ll have to democratically answer to their CLPs against other candidates vying for selection. What chance a Hodge, a Streeting or a Jess Philips beating someone more openly pro-Corbyn in an open selection process to be Labour’s official candidate for their respective constituencies?

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    Clear front runner (at the moment) amongst Tory MPs, Jeremy #unt (not that this matters a jot if Johnson is on the ballot dispatched to the swivel eyed loons), wants to put a negotiating team together including representation from Scotland and Wales. That’s a refreshing change, giving the democratically elected leadership of the Scots and Welsh a say ….. Oh fuck! he means Ruth the mooth and her Welsh equivalent. At this stage, they’re just trolling us. Roll on IndyRef II.

    • Sharp Ears

      My comment about Corbyn being referred to the EHRC is considered to be ‘off topic’ by the moderator. I would say that the undermining of Corbyn is very relevant to the topic – Thoughts on UK Politics – !

  • IrishU

    Sinn Fein topped the poll on first preferences but secured the last seat (third out of third), the centre ground in NI has grown massively since 2017.

    The Alliance Party, sister party of the Lib Dems, secured their best ever local election results three weeks ago and their leader, Naomi Long, secured the second MEP seat yesterday.

    It is also worth recording that Sinn Fein have seen their support decline significantly in the Republic of Ireland in both the European and local elections held on Friday of last week.

    Interesting times but I wouldn’t write the obituary for Northern Ireland, or the union, just yet.

  • Tintin Quarantino

    Caitlin Johnstone, one of the best independent journalists out there, of which there are many, provides some salient reminders in this article linked below, which may help us determine some sort of positive solution. To those of us who have ourselves drawn these conclusions over the years through study, and ’homework’ much of this isn’t revelatory, rather more stark-staringly obvious.

    Here are some stand out paragraphs from this piece here:

    https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2019/03/31/people-will-never-ever-rebel-as-long-as-theyre-successfully-propagandized/
    People Will Never, Ever Rebel As Long As They’re Successfully Propagandized

    “You’d expect that more dissident thinking would be pouring into solving this dilemma, but not much is. People talk about elections and political strategies, they talk about who has the most correct ideology, they talk about rising up and seizing the means of production due to unacceptable material conditions, they wax philosophical about the tyranny of the state and the immorality of coercion, but they rarely address the elephant in the room that you can’t get a populace to oust the status quo when they do not want to.”

    “We fill our children’s heads with lies about how the world works, how the government works, how the media works, and, on a deeper level, how their own consciousness works, and the entire process is shaped to funnel power toward the people who control our stories. The modern schooling system was largely formed by John D Rockefeller, widely considered the wealthiest person in modern history, in order to create generations of docile gear-turners for the industrial plutocratic machine. Modern schooling is essentially mainstream media in a building; it promotes authorized narratives day in and day out to ensure that children will have a reaction of cognitive dissonance and rejection when confronted with information which contradicts those narratives.”

    “This funnels the populace seamlessly into the narrative control matrix of adulthood, where childhood indoctrination into mainstream narratives lubricates the way for continual programming of credulous minds with mass media propaganda. All the print, TV and online media they are presented with supports the status quo-supporting agendas of the same plutocratic class that John D Rockefeller dominated all those years ago. This ensures that no matter how bad things get, no matter how severely our spirits are crushed by end-stage metastatic neoliberalism, no matter how many stupid, pointless wars we’re duped into, no matter how much further we are drawn along the path toward extinction via climate chaos or nuclear war, we will never revolt to overthrow our rulers.”

    “Nothing will ever be done about our predicament as long as powerful people are controlling the stories that the majority of the public believe. This is as true today as it was in John D Rockefeller’s time, which was as true as when Rome chose to spread the “render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s” submissiveness of Christianity throughout the Empire. The only difference is that now the powerful have a century of post-Bernays propaganda science under their belt, and a whole lot of research and development can happen in a hundred years.”

  • Republicofscotland

    Alistair Campbell suspended from the Labour party, for telling folk to vote Lib/Dems.

      • Ingwe

        What would really make my day is not only their expulsion from the Labour Party (Bliar and Dumbell) but also their facing indictments from the ICJ for waging agressive.

    • Jo1

      No surprise. Just a publicity stunt by Campbell to announce he would vote LibDem knowing he’d be automatically expelled. The rules are clear on that.

      Just another day in the life of the “Get Corbyn” saga.

    • Geoffrey

      It is weird world where you care about this when talking about the man whose lies took us into war in Iraq.
      Who cares ?

  • MJ

    I fail to see how Craig can pen a piece entitled “Thoughts on UK Politics” without appearing to have any thoughts to share on the astonishing rise of the Brexit Party. This is particularly odd because the issues of UK nationalism and Scottish nationalism are essentially the same, they just have different levels of resolution. One is small and inward-looking, the other is even smaller and more inward-looking.

    • Republicofscotland

      “This is particularly odd because the issues of UK nationalism and Scottish nationalism are essentially the same, they just have different levels of resolution.”

      British nationalism is mired in one of isolationism, and a fear and loathing of foreigners, combined with the delusion of regaining the empire, overall a nasty and unsavoury picture.

      Scottish nationalism in my opinion is one of a outward looking inclusive and progress in nature.

      • Mary Pau!

        It is one thing to welcome foreign visitors to your country as tourists, another to find they are actually settling here in large numbers, competing for jobs and services, welcomed by government ministers and their high profile business friends, at the same time as the government is running a major austerity campaign hitting local services.

        I needed urgent medical attention while I was on holiday in the UK away from home recently. The ambulance crew told me it was not worth turning up at the “local” A and E, 25 miles away, unless comatose on a stretcher, as waits for treatment were running at least 6 hours that night. (Looking this up on line later, I found the 6 hour hour wait had been 10 hours not long before that.)

        I am old enough to remember it was not as bad as this in my own experience.So I can understand why people in deprived towns, look around at their increasingly overcrowded towns and underfunded public services and blame some of the competition for scarce resources on the EU freedom of movement and the arrival of the EU migrants who came to settle in the UK so rapidly in such large numbers. In addition to migrants from India and Pakistan.

        To cope with such a large and rapid influx of migrants, into a welfare state,with no advanced planning, you need spare capacity in public services. Something which we did not and do not have.

        It is clear that the government wildly underestimated numbers of migrants arriving and failed to control these numbers perhaps deliberately so. No one in government said sorry we miscalculated. They were too busy pandering to business, both New Labour and Tories alike. Anyone who objected to this overnight transformation of their county was called an ignorant racist populist by EU supporters. Senior politicians, egged on by businessmen, preached more freedom of movement, more cross borders cheap labour and EU leaders in Brussels preached more integration.

        Is it any wonder the Brexit classes have voted for Brexit? The English blame their political classes for their troubles. (The Scots of course blame the English.)

        • Republicofscotland

          Sorry to hear you were ill, I hope you are feeling much better now.

          Of course bad governance over several decades, and a willingness to cut funding to the NHS in England, only added to your suffering.

          Then there’s nuclear weapons and the unelected troughers in the House of Lords, which is costing the taxpayer a unimaginable amount of money, which could be used to bolster public services.

          Of course blaming tax paying immigrants, who staff our hospitals, and do the jobs that some Brits turn their noses up at, is exactly what the British government wants you to do. Its far easier to scapegoat a section of society, that actually do something about the social problems the public faces.

          Meanwhile the troughers, and their corporate buddies continue to remain a drain on public services.

          As for Scots blaming the English, well no, just the Westminster government. Many English folk live in Scotland quite happily, and quite a few are members of English people for Scottish independence.

          https://mobile.twitter.com/englishscot4yes?lang=en

          • Mary Pau!

            Thank you for your good wishes. Unfortunately “,the English ” are often blamed here. I hope this is shorthand for the Westminster givernment.

        • Dungroanin

          MaryPaul,
          It seems that you personally don’t blame the EU immigrants for the underfunded and understaffed NHS in throes of ever more privatisation – only that some people may think that.

          My experience of dealing with the NHS recently is that a geriatric but active person in need of a total knee replacement can have a second rate operation on the NHS (involving greaters risks and recovery time) or have the first rate operation at a private hospital for 15 grand – by the same surgeon. This procedure was available on the NHS until being withdrawn and made only available at the many adjoining private hospitals using the same consultants!

          Now there are other examples I could give where the NHS inhouse capabilities have been ham-strung to allow the private sector to flourish.
          One being of having nursing staff supplied through agencies – leading to inevitable problems with lack of continuity. Many of these staff were drawn from the EU, as are many of the private care company staff. They are going to more secure employment in other parts of the EU and the world now because of impending brexit.

          Thus the pressure on the NHS is multiplied even before we brexit and will intensify until we go back to staffing and training for the long term as a public NHS. Or we will have to suffer a two tier system which will be accessible through a private health insurance corporation or by paying cash for what should be the best treatment available to anyone in need and free at the point of use.

          That was one of the rewards for the sacrifice by the civilians and conscripts in WWII. THAT is what the grandparents and great grand parents left for us. All we do is moan about it and let it be taken away from ourselves and our grandchildre, while we are led to blame EU immigrants. The ancestors are whirling away in disgust.

          • Dave Lawton

            Dungroanin
            May 28, 2019 at 23:15 “This procedure was available on the NHS until being withdrawn and made only available at the many adjoining private hospitals using the same consultants! ”

            It is what is called moonlighting.And while still collecting a NHS salary.All so the NHS has been infiltrated by the EU funded Common Purpose group and has blocked Sir Brian Jarmans investigations into the high high mortality rates in the NHS.They really need to be rooted out.

          • Sharp Ears

            The orthopaedic waiting time in ‘leafy Surrey’ for a TKR is 22 weeks. There are 28,000 patients on the waiting list for surgery of all types. The waiting list for the same TKR operation at a popular private hospital, for those with enough quids or insured, is 29 weeks. I have just looked these figures up. There are 17 orthopaedic surgeon listed at the local general district hospital dealing with these specialities – Upper Limb, Lower Limb, Spinal, Foot and Ankle.

          • Mary Pau!

            Is that correct SharpEars, that it is a longer to wait to go privately for an orthopaedic op, or is that a typo?

          • Dungroanin

            They were quoted a timescale of 4-6 weeks after the consultation on the private route.

            My main point is not about the waiting time but the procedure used.

        • fwl

          I went to A&E recently. Waiting room was packed. I thought I’d be there all day but it was unexpectedly quick – 90 min to see Doctor, have Xray, see Dr and have treatment and I had my follow up appointment booked within 3 days for an appointment within 7 days later.

          They also have a machine for non EU attendees to pay.

    • Martinned

      Wait, Farage went from 26.6% to 31.6% and that’s somehow an “astonishing rise”? It’s a win, sure, but what’s so astonishing? The better question is why he didn’t win the other 20%-points of leave voters as well.

      • Republicofscotland

        I see Timmermans, is in the running to become EU President.

        Meanwhile closer to home Labour MSP Neil Findlay, a Corbyn stalwart has quit Holyrood altogether.

        • Jo1

          He was a very good MSP. Ian Murray is clearly creating bedlam with his constant bitching. He’s a menace and a poisonous one at that.

        • Vivian O'Blivion

          Indeedily do. Rhinehart Lobster’s jaikit is on a shoogly peg. Scottish Labour, Cabinet member Daniel Johnson (na, me neither) has chosen to return to much deserved obscurity.

        • Iain Stewart

          Ros, if you really are keen that an independent Scotland should join the EU then perhaps it would be worth spending a little time learning about how it works, and whether there is such a thing as an “EU president”.

    • Jo1

      There hasn’t been a “rise” of the Brexit Party. It’s simply replaced UKIP and votes moved over accordingly.

      • Godolphin

        You don’t think that maybe there were voters for the Brexit party who had previously voted for Conservatives and Labour.

        • Jo1

          I think some will have been from Labour and Tory but the vast majority came over from UKIP, that was clear from the data presented. I believe the LibDems were the main beneficiaries of discontent in Labour/Tory circles as were the Greens.

    • Sc

      Didn’t they basically take the ukip vote and a bit more, not that amazing. UKIP had lots of meps, but became more racist and lost support.

      • andic

        Do you mean to say that UKIP’s Brexit supporting (and thus racist obviously) voters punished them for becoming racist?

  • Dungroanin

    17 million people did not vote for the Fararage’s Brexit party. Hard Brexit is dead.

    Anecdote 1, from last nights charity do:-
    A long term Labour supporting aquaintance from Corbyn’s constituency – he turned up at their door (there was no campaigning by the Blairite in my area -NONE) – told him to his face that they felt betrayed that he was trying to STOP brexit and would vote for Nigel (and so would the whole family). Stop Brexit!!??
    Why did they think Brexit was a good idea i asked? Because of immigrants sleeping rough and taking all the jobs and overloading the NHS, our kids not being trained, etc
    And my lot (types like me) are trying to perpetuate it by ignoring democracy, etc.

    Now during that sustained rant, i realised they were repeating by rote something they and their family had learnt – from social media and direct targeting.

    Anecdote 2 – Another long term friends, Labour voting, said they wanted to send a message and would vote Green this time because Labout were NOT stopping Brexit!!!

    The system is broken because it has been increasingly gamed over the last 40 years to deliver the neocon/neolib project. NuLabour did not deliver any corrective to Thatcherism. This is the first Labour leadership to offer that in that 40 years. No wonder that the kitchen sink and any blunt instrument is being launched at them along with all the sophisticated weaponary.

    Weapons such as the increasing Identity Politics, of more and more categories/varities, the main purpose of which is to split peoples by screwing with their minds. The chicken little bluster of facism/evil Russian/ Islamism/ Climate warriors/ Trans peoples etc – the MSM happily spreads it daily like so much farm slurry, leaving an evil miasma, that we all stink of it …

    As many thoughtful people know – the uber rich and powerful don’t care which party, coalition, PR setup is officially in charge – as long as they continue to deliver their wishes.

    So in my opinion, nothing has changed, the choice is still between justice and fairness for all, not just the ‘ruling classes’.

    George Eaton wrote ‘In an era of social media, viral videos and mass higher education, Gramsci’s concept of hegemony feels startlingly prescient.’
    https://www.newstatesman.com/culture/observations/2018/02/why-antonio-gramsci-marxist-thinker-our-times

    • Loony

      I guess it was an oversight on your part not to mention that George Eaton is a proven liar.

      • Dungroanin

        I had no idea that he has been taken to court and found guilty of lying. It may have been during my travels. Having had a quick search it appears there was some kerfuffle about Roger Scruton being fired after the Board of Deputies told the Tory government to sack him.
        Is that what you refer to? A tweet by Eaton?

        • Loony

          Do you have to take people to court to prove the truth or falsity of their claims?

          Has the accuracy of Einstein’s theory of relatively been adjudicated by courts?

          If I identify you as a sophist then are you going to take me to court?

          • Dungroanin

            Lol I have no idea what you are ouanquering on about – you said ‘proven liar’ which seems to indicate some adjudication.
            Are you not interested in my o/p? Or my response to your question? Is it the Scrutton affair you refer to? Did you even bother reading the article i linked?

            Try to stop Borising about all over the place, there’s a good chap. Lol

    • MJ

      “Hard Brexit is dead”

      A no-deal Brexit remains the default position in the absence of a deal.

        • MJ

          Parliament voted for it when it passed the European Union (Departure) Act. Subsequent “indicative” votes don’t count.

    • MJ

      “Why did they think Brexit was a good idea i asked?”

      I think it was one of the failures of the Remain campaign that it failed to offer a good philosophical reason for remaining in the EU. It had no answer to the principle that the inhabitants of this island should have ultimate control over its laws. Admittedly it would have been difficult to claim that the EU was a benign and happy-clappy organisation since this had been exposed for the noddle-headed fantasy it is by the treatment of Greece.

      It resorted instead to scare tactics, which failed miserably. Even now, disgruntled Remainers who can’t come to terms with the fact that their little views were heard but found wanting, have nothing to commend their case other than ladling on yet more woo-woo, presumably in the belief that what failed the first time will come through in the end.

      • Ian

        You weren’t listening then. What a surprise. Funny how leavers have been unable to articulate or evidence a single improvement in our affairs after brexit. Our laws, btw, will still be framed in accordance with various international treaty obligations. And the rightwing dystopia which it will achieve will be such a happy clappy utopia, i can hardly wait.

        • MJ

          I may not have been listening as closely as I could have been because I had made my mind up long before. I distinctly remember however Obama’s hilarious intervention. Back of the queue? Shouldn’t that have been back of the line Mr President?

          I’m pretty sure that I heard no positive case for EU membership and still have not. Only woo-woo.

          • Garth Carthy

            MJ: The EU may be a mess of corruption and bureaucratic nonsense but I think most ‘Remainers’ accept that the EU is far from perfect. However, if you think Brexit will give us anything resembling sovereignty, you’re sadly naïve and delusional.
            We will be at the beck and call of the US even more than we are now and will have to make new trade deals on terms that are always more favourable to the other trading nations.
            The only ‘Leavers’ that will gain are those who are already wealthy and are able to avoid the hardships they put upon the less well off.

          • Ian

            When you close your ears, that is all you will hear, especially when your mind was already made up. You hear what you want to hear.

        • Loony

          Not that you will be interested, but consider this.

          Article 31 of EC Council Regulations No 850/98 states “The capturing of marine organisms using methods incorporating the use of explosives, poisonous or stupefying substances, or electric current shall be prohibited”

          What can this possibly mean? The key to understanding this lies in the word “prohibited” In this case prohibited means that, with regard to electric current fishing, it is permissible just so long as you are operating a Dutch registered trawler operating in British territorial waters. Now who would ever thought that the words chosen by the EU could possibly mean what the EU say they mean.

          It seems that in addition to other multiple failures the EU is now incompatible with the Dictionary. Do you not find it odd that environmental activists are entirely silent on this matter.

      • Dungroanin

        Watch my lips.
        Brexit is a project of the global robber barons to protect the ancient City from regulation and transparency.

        Austerity was the heating pan of water that we were all put into by them and their muppet politicians – and we were the frogs, so that we would believe that all our daily ills were the fault of the EU, not the political choice of austerity, which is continuing.

        The brexit campaign here and the fake alt-rightists across the EU are all part of the same campaign.

        They have failed. We didn’t exit on 29th March because Labour were successful in getting a meaningful vote.

        The results across the EU driven by turnout has stuffed the Barons’ plans.

        They have only the last throw of the dice get their mad black knight Macron to have single combat with Merkel to try and break the political will of the EU.
        We can be pretty sure of how that will end.

        Mutti is going to serve out the come-uppance on his arse!

    • Deb O'Nair

      “… and overloading the NHS”

      Anyone that supports the NHS and votes Brexit Party is clearly an ill-informed idiot. Farage has publicly stated that the NHS should be funded by private health insurance, as in the US, which is just a sly way of saying is should be privatised. The NHS will be on the table when post-Brexit UK is negotiation ‘free trade’ deal with the US.

      • Dave Lawton

        Deb O’Nair
        May 29, 2019 at 20:48

        “… and overloading the NHS”
        You really are uninformed.The NHS was being privatised many years ago by the Labour government.Stick to facts.

        • Deb O'Nair

          “Stick to facts”

          Your “facts” I presume?

          My point is not regarding how much of the NHS is under private control (which in the NHS is considerable) but what the definition of a publicly funded national healthcare system is; free at the point of use and publicly funded.

          Even if the whole of the NHS was under private control but remained free at the point of use and was publicly funded it would still, by definition, be a publicly funded national healthcare system.

  • Bp

    Craig, I follow your posts with considerable interest and sympathy. I can even appreciare your desire for an independent Scotland, though I find it harder to understand why you should then be willing to hand over your hard-won independence to an increasingly authoritarian, undemocratic and unelected EU. Surely an independent Scotland would find that despite our current differences it would still have more in common with an independent England in the event of Brexit? Or do you suspect that should this last actually take place then our English politicians would betray their fellow citizens by placing them even further under the yoke of the presently dangerous and intolerant US imperialism?

    • Dave

      The immediate benefit of Brexit, even a soft-Brexit, would be to provide the money tree and end austerity. The Euro-Left and SNP dishonestly attribute austerity to the Tories, but austerity was promoted by Labour too, to “balance the books”!

      Except Tory/ Labour austerity was/is really EU austerity to save the Euro which the establishment wanted to join and explains the promotion of PFI mickey-mouse accounting to keep Britain within the rules for joining the Euro when politically possible.

      The hurdle was a Lab/Con promise to hold a referendum before joining the Euro, which couldn’t be won, hence why the EU referendum was held to use a Remain vote to trump the earlier promise and take us in to solve the Euro-crisis.

      Now that Leave has ended any prospect of joining the Euro any time soon, the Chancellor has announced “an end to austerity”. Admittedly its qualified to avoid the whole “balancing the books” lie to be exposed, but its knowing the truth that enables the Shadow Chancellor to promise a massive expansion of public spending, but he wont be able to deliver if Remainers block Brexit.

  • John2o2o

    I have always thought that you had unrealistic expectations about Scottish independence Craig.

    I recently made the mistake of approaching a woman for a romantic relationship. I thought it was what I wanted and what she may have wanted. It seems I was wrong. It is heartbreaking.

    Perhaps you cannot always achieve the things you want in life, but I hope now that one day you can persuade enough Scots to agree with you and that you achieve your dream.

    I have always sat on the fence about this matter up to now, but if it means as much to you and your fellow nationalists as this potential relationship meant to me then I change my mind.

    Another Scottish cousin of mine is getting married in July, so I will be going north of the border again with my parents and sisters and their families. It is always good to see them.

    • Dave

      A really strong sense of patriotism is borne of kinship and shared values and drives the self-determination of nations, but its difficult to see how the SNP policy of becoming a province of a European super-state with open borders delivers independence.

      • Andyoldlabour

        Dave

        I would also wonder what price Scotland would have to pay to join the EU, and what the reaction of the Scottish people would be, when the EU dictates what the Scottish budget should contain. I also wonder if the EU would be keen on Scotalnd keeping their low tuition fees, free hospital parking and free prescription charges?

        • Republicofscotland

          A lot of wondering without any hard facts there, apart from free hospital car parking, of which doesn’t apply to several hospitals in Scotland as Labours disasterous PFI misadventures have and will continue to cost patients a fortune to park their cars in the hospital carparks, of several hospitals for decades to come.

        • glenn_nl

          Andyoldlabour: The EU has no position on hospital parking fees to the best of my knowledge. In Wales there is no charge for parking in a hospital car park. There also are no prescription fees. Who did you listen to, that blamed the EU for same?

      • Mary Pau!

        Back to the Somewheres and Anywheres again – to define Brexiteers and Remainers.

  • Raskolnikov

    “Nobody has the right to stop England from Brexiting as it wishes. What is needed is a mature and friendly acceptance that this means the UK must split.”

    Well said.

  • Andyoldlabour

    I read some interesting stuff about the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum.
    We know that “Better Together” won the day, defeating “Yes Scotland” by 55.3% to 44.7%, and that there was a huge turnout of 84.59%.
    What I didn’t realise, was that for this vote they lowered the voting age from 18 to 16, and allowed ANY EU or Commonwealth citizen resident in Scotland to vote.
    In my opinion, this falsely increased the electorate, and my main question would be – why did they do it?
    In my humble opinion, 56/44 and 52/48 are not that different, so why all the fuss over the Brexit vote, when there was no uproar or sour grapes about the Scottish independence vote?
    The real elephant in the room when it comes to voting and politics, is our current electoral system – first past the post – it doesn’t work. We need proportional representation, we need to get rid of lobbying, get rid of the whip system and we need MP’s to listen to and serve their constituents, which they are currently not doing.
    As for rebel MP’s who leave their party, they should have to step down and a by-election should be called. If there is a change of leader for the governing party, then a general election should be called.
    As MJ correctly pointed out, the EU is anything but a benign organisation, it is self serving and corrupt – three EU presidents from Luxembourg should prove that. The austerity measures which have been implemented/forced on us, have been ordered by Brussels (using our puppet leaders – Bliar, Brown, Cameron, May), just witness the latest shennanigans over the Italian budget, where the EU refused to accept it.
    Lastly, if I join a club I want to see equal subs for all, I don’t want to be propping up basket cases who don’t particularly care for us.
    The EU has not benefitted the ordinary people of the UK, it has only helped line the pockets of the political elite and unscrupulous employers.

    • Xavi

      Andy, I’ve no idea where you got that from. Only eurozone countries are subject to Brussels restrictions on their governments’ spending. Austerity in the UK is solely the responsibility of the Tories and the Lib Dems (and a MSM that entrenched the lie that the poor and disabled must be forced to pay for the sins of the bankers.) The austerity fanatics in Brussels had no role in what’s happened here.

      • Loony

        Have you ever wondered why substantially all central banks have introduced zero interest rates and QE. This is a product of globalization and the EU is a central pillar of globalization.

        Monetary policy of this nature creates inflation. This inflation has been channeled into asset price inflation. The inflation that leaks into the consumer side of the economy has been masked by changes to the way in which inflation is recorded. Such policies inevitably result in growing wealth disparity, the most extreme effects of which have been ameliorated by social security payments. If you are interested in what austerity really looks like check out Zimbabwe.

        There has been no policy of austerity. Rather there has been a policy to address a solvency crisis with a liquidity solution. It is this policy that has resulted in many of the same symptoms that would be seen with a policy of austerity. When politicians and the media told you they were adopting austerity measures they were lying. Ask why they chose to tell unpopular lies as opposed to telling the truth.

        • Xavi

          Austerity has been an ideological pillar of the British Conservative party as long as anyone can remember. The 07-08 taxpayer bailout of gambling bankers just gave them the opportunity to roll back the state far further than they had ever previously dared. It has been a counterproductive policy even on its own terms, as even the likes of the IMF now acknowledge.

          • Loony

            I have previously mentioned that opinions absent evidence are worthless. They are less than worthless when all available evidence contradicts that opinion.

            Life expectancy is a good proxy for austerity. In the UK in 1951 (probably as far back as most people can remember) life expectancy was 66.4 for men and 71.5 for women. Today those figures stand at 79 and 82.8 respectively. The upward trend is unbroken.

            In 1980 average life expectancy in Zimbabwe was 59.39. By 2003 average life expectancy had declined to 44.19

            In 1988 average life expectancy in Russia was 69.46. By 2003 it had declined to 65.05.

            Zimbabwe suffered austerity as a consequence of government policies and Russia suffered austerity as a consequence of the collapse of the USSR.

            The UK has never suffered austerity during the post war period and to suggest otherwise is both puerile and offensive to those that have suffered austerity. Rather like pretending to have a terminal disease in order to divert attention away from those that are actually suffering from a terminal disease..

          • michael norton

            Loony,
            all these tremendously fat young people will probably be dying younger
            than their own parents or grandparents.
            They are choking themselves to death on T.V. meals and take aways.

          • Loony

            @Xavi – There is no diverting of attention on my part. Rather the opposite is true. You make a claim that is demonstrably false and I seek to focus attention on the falsity of your claim.

        • JMF

          When you cut interest rates again and again and again and again and again etc. as we’ve seen over the past 20 years or so, this creates DEFLATION because it gives the economic advantage to the new business vs the old established business. The new business copies the old business but can borrow at lower cost and can therefore UNDERCUT the old established business. The inflation of asset prices is only temporary……….

        • Deb O'Nair

          “Have you ever wondered why substantially all central banks have introduced zero interest rates and QE. ”

          QE came first, near 0% base rates followed. The objective is ‘deflating’ debt, i.e. interest rates kept at near zero while inflation is at 2-3% means debt is reducing in real terms with time

      • Dave

        When New Labour was elected in 1997 they had manifesto promises to improve public services and hold a referendum to join the Euro. (A referendum promise made by Lab and Con following success of Sir James Goldsmith’s Referendum Party).

        But this created a dilemma, because to improve public services required an increase in public spending, but to keep within the rules for joining the Euro involved restrictions on public spending.

        The dilemma was resolved with mickey-mouse PFI accounting in which ‘private’ money was used instead of public money on public services. The National Audit Office said this constituted public debt and should be shown on rather than off the books, but Gordon Brown replied, all in good time. The off the books debt was over £200billion.

        This is why austerity isn’t strictly true for certain parts of the economy, but it has certainly been applied to local government.

        It was an expensive way to build hospitals etc, but I suppose they didn’t expect it to last so long. However now there is no prospect of joining the Euro any time soon, PFI is being abandoned in favour of standard value for money Public Sector Borrowing.

        • Hatuey

          Yes, all good. I’d add that to this day they still don’t count PFI liabilities as national debt. They don’t count pension commitments either. In both cases they technically should be defined as national debt.

          Brexiteers on here rant and rave about TARGET2 debts of 1 trillion euros, which is effectively the balance sheet for the whole eurozone. Britain’s National debt if you count PFI and pensions is vastly more than double that amount.

          • Geoffrey

            At least some pensions are funded in the UK. Public sector workers are not funded. On the continent none are funded therefore the liability is much greater there.

    • Republicofscotland

      “What I didn’t realise, was that for this vote they lowered the voting age from 18 to 16, and allowed ANY EU or Commonwealth citizen resident in Scotland to vote.”

      You can get married and start a family, and you pay taxes at 16 years of age so why shouldn’t you be able to vote, no taxation without representation.

      There’s a hell of a lot you haven’t realised with regards to the skullduggery of the British state and Better Together, during the 2014 indyref, but I’d be here all day pointing out their machinations to keep Scotland in the union.

      • Amicus

        Fair point, on the voting age, but have your own views changed since your were 16? Are there any things you look back on and realise you were wrong about? Madly wrong about? Age lends a wisdom, sometimes even cynicism. Young people, while the hope for the future, are influenced easily.

        • Republicofscotland

          “Age lends a wisdom, ”

          Really? Look around I see no wisdom eminating from Westminster, plenty of cynicism though.

          The future belongs to the young, ergo they should have a say in it.

        • Susan Smith

          My views have changed since I was 63 – I was going to vote Lib Dem in 2010 , having voted Labour in General Elections, but SNP at local elections and for Holyrood, because our Labour MP had supported the Iraq war. When I realised that the Lib Dems would be jumping into bed with the Tories if asked, I decided it would be SNP, always.

      • N_

        Babies are liable for income tax too, for example on income received on their savings.

    • N_

      @Andy

      What’s a positive argument for why proportional representation would “work”? Lobbyists would have no problem with having to focus their lobbying on party bosses even more than they do at the moment.

      Also from the point of view of control over MPs’ behaviour there’s not a big gap between seat loss for MPs who leave their parties (which must include those who get expelled) and the whip system.

      Big business has got that whole sh*thouse called Parliament well stitched up. And the civil service too. And the universities. Parliamentary democracy is a product of the media. When the media spread to the middle classes, they got the vote. Rope ’em in. Then it spread to the working class – not under pressure from the Chartists etc. but because mass media was coming and eventually mass production and mass consumption too. It won’t surprise me at all if they let people (or possibly make them) vote on smartphones next.

      There’s no parliamentary road 🙂

    • N_

      EU citizens resident in Britain may vote in local elections, including for local councils and regional parliaments such as in Scotland and Wales.

      Citizens of the Republic of Ireland and qualifying Commonwealth countries (Australia, India, Pakistan, etc.) may vote in all elections.

      As far as I know, the Scottish indyref used the same list of Commonwealth countries as is used in all other British elections. The big difference was that children aged 16 and 17 were allowed to vote. The SNP wanted this because they ran their campaign around selling sunshine and as all advertisers are aware young people are more gullible than older people. (Never mind questions like “How will Scotland join the EU if it doesn’t establish a central bank?” Scrub that and replace with “Do you want freedom?”) The famed “rebelliousness” is largely against their parents, encouraged by big business, not against big business itself. Advertising trainees are taught this.

  • N_

    3.1% of those eligible to vote bothered to go to a polling station and vote Tory in an important UK wide election last week. That’s 1 voter in every 33. Yet the Tory Party is shortly going to choose internally, from within its despised ranks, the next Prime Minister of the UK, even though that Tory Party does not even command a majority at Westminster.

    (…)

    If you do the figures for England alone, it is absolutely plain that the people of England wish to Brexit. Nobody has the right to stop England from Brexiting as it wishes. What is needed is a mature and friendly acceptance that this means the UK must split.

    Around 11% of the electorate in England voted for the Brexit Party or UKIP. That’s 1 in 9.

    When 1 in 9 back something, that makes the overwhelming popular support for it absolutely plain, but when only 1 in 33 back something the level of popular support is negligible?

    Meantime the SNP were runaway victors in Scotland

    …with votes from 15% of the electorate, 1 in 7.

    Regarding Change UK, my guess is that they will say to the LibDem leadership “Here are our terms for an alliance”, and the response will be “You’re welcome to join us, but we don’t want to hear about your terms. Just apply the same way everybody else does. If that’s not good enough for you, f*** off.” Chuka might get given a relatively safe LibDem seat if any are available and if he hasn’t negotiated himself a much better job than MP by the time of the next general election. Anna’s application if she makes one will get lost. As for the others, haha.

  • N_

    If you do the figures for England alone, it is absolutely plain that the people of England wish to Brexit.

    Why single out England? The Brexit Party plus UKIP got 36% in Wales.

    Meanwhile in London they got almost as low a percentage (20%) as in Scotland (17%).

  • mike

    If Corbyn goes for a second referendum the north of England will desert Labour – again.

    Guys like the war criminal Campbell know that fine well.

    • Hatuey

      You’re right about Campbell. He also knows that constructive ambiguity has worked. The policy of not disturbing your enemy when he’s in the middle of destroying himself makes a lot of sense and if Labour can find a way to continue doing that then they should and will.

      Campbell should keep his mouth shut.

      • Ian

        Constructive ambiguity, an oxymoron, has led to the disastrous leaching away of swathes of Labour support from both sides. The delusion that they can sit on the sidelines while the tories implode, then ride in like the cavalry, is pure Hollywood. We are now in a multi party situation within a system set up for two parties. Labour have helped massively in creating this, and show no signs of any ability to form alliances with other parties, which is their only hope of power. They really are antediluvian.

        • Hatuey

          I won’t argue but you omit one critical thing — Labour aren’t the government. And the polls show that more people on the brexit side are, rightly, blaming the failures of the Tory government for the lack of progress and betrayal than Labour.

          You don’t seem to understand constructive ambiguity though. it isn’t a permanent position and there’s no cavalry charge envisaged. It’s a holding position. Two things are inevitable; 1) the tories will implode, and 2) public opinion will shift on brexit.

          Only when those two processes are well underway will Labour crawl out from under the rock. It’s funny seeing the media and others trying to entice them to come out now, but now is early and I predict they will continue to hold for a few more weeks.

    • Ian

      They are our only hope, but are largely ignored and patronised, as usual, despite having more insight and commitment than their feeble elders.

  • Chemical Britain

    Long live Nigel Farage.

    Brexit means Brexit.

    The democratic vote of the people must be respected.

    Our hero Craig is as elitist, arrogant, undemocratic and coloniser of his own people as the Queen in undemocratically trying to obstruct the democratic wish of the people of the United Kingdom.

    • Hatuey

      As I understand it, Craig Murray has said that he thinks the will of the English people on brexit should be respected.

  • pete

    Re Hatuey at 19.08
    Thanks for your thoughtful reply, I admit I may have exaggerated the dire circumstances the western world finds itself in vis-a-vis the economic situation and how the economy works. My learning on the subject is rudimentary, my degree is in politics, I find the material on the subject interesting but bound up with mystification, jargon and outright nonsense.

    Fiat money is credible only if the public has trust in the management of the economy, the most recent financial crisis tested that, not much seems to have been done to prevent a re occurrence of the problem. Britain seems to rely far to much on the city banking system, it seems to be a law unto itself, the regulations arcane and simultaneously too weak and too tortuous, the laundering of money too easy, the obfuscation of ownership too simple. It need an urgent overhaul.

    I can however cite, albeit anecdotal, evidence to advance the argument put by Looney that inflation is caused by the injection of too much money into the economy and this relates to house prices. My present dwelling cost me about £60,000 some years ago, the most recent valuation of it puts it at a little under half a million. Bar the most basic maintenance I have done absolutely nothing to the property to increase its value, to me it seems that the market has gone crazy. The explanation for the increase in value must lie elsewhere. I believe the government has had a hand in this, by restricting the public building program, encouraging people to speculate in property and fuelling the availability of cheap credit. Of course I acknowledge there are many other factors, but none of them seem to be in my control. On my most recent salary I could never have afforded the house I now live in. It goes without saying that the price of my property is now outside the purchasing possibility of an awful lot of people and that is a serious social problem because I live nowhere special.

    I know of no simple answer to this problem. One of the reasons I read Craig’s blog, and indeed all the comments, is that he seems to have a handle on these type of complex questions. He is idealistic but in no way a fool, his advocacy of both individual rights and a policy that seeks to ameliorate the harsher side of the kind of laissez-faire economic policy of the conservative government seems to me to be wholly laudable. So good luck to him and indeed the SNP, Scotland’s gain will be England’s loss

    • Loony

      Not only is there no simple answer to the problems you identify, there is no answer period.

      Fiat money allows war without limit as it removes all funding constraints. Naturally this has led to war after war.

      An attempt at rationality was made in 1944 at Bretton Woods. That system broke in 1971 – surprisingly enough to free up funding for the war in Vietnam. Since 1971 the fiat US$ has acted as reserve currency. The US$ is de-facto backed by Saudi Arabian oil and Saudi Arabian oil is backed by the US military which is itself backed by the US$.

      This explains many things – ranging from the war in Iraq through to the destruction of Libya. It explains why no-one cares about the murder of Khashoggi in the Saudi embassy in Turkey and why everyone cares about Julian Assange. It explains why Russia is the great enemy – their vast natural resources are needed to shore up the US$.

      Every single fiat currency everywhere has always been destroyed. To look at fiat currencies of today and to assume they will persist is exactly analogous as looking at living people and assume that they will never die.

      There is plenty of evidence around to suggest that the fiat currencies of today are in their terminal phase. This will be especially problematic as substantially all currencies are derivatives of the US$. The single most important piece of evidence is the injection of liquidity in response to a solvency crisis. This is why asset prices are spiraling out of control, and asset price inflation explains why more and more people are essentially locked out of any meaningful participation in the economy. As a consequence of attempting to monetize substantially everything then being excluded from economic participation increasingly means exclusion from participation in society. Thus “barbarians” are born – and the barbarians are already at many gates.

      Some barbarians will be false prophets bearing false gifts (e.g. Jeremy Corbyn) and some barbarians will be testosterone fueled killers of the weak. Whichever flavor of barbarian is your favorite makes no real difference – and is perhaps the only choice left to make.

      • Hatuey

        Loony, we can dispense with your multifaceted argument very simply by comparing the history of Europe before 1821 (when Britain became the first state to embrace the gold standard) and Europe any time afterwards when the gold standard was at its peak.
        You will find that war, economic instability, and various other crises existed before and after and were just as destructive and violent. Nothing changed. Debate over.

        If you look at say the 30 Years War, 1618 to 1648, around a quarter to a fifth of the European population died. They did that without paper money or fiat currencies. Then there’s all those 18th century “bubbles” — South Seas, etc. Would you like more examples?

        The mistake people make is to assume that the capitalist system needs to have some underlying logic and structure to it. It doesn’t. Put another way, capitalism doesn’t work. It has no intrinsic logic or laws governing it. It’s basically a big sequence of smash and grab events. And it always crashes.

        Before capitalism we had crashes too and that supports the point — human corruption and greed will undermine any system. To attribute those failures to the form of money supply is quite bizarre; it’s like arguing that fouling in football is caused by the ball.

        • Loony

          I have never sought to argue that war has not existed throughout recorded history. I am proposing an explanation for current wars – why there are so many of them and why very few people are required to make personal financial sacrifices to pay for them.

          Obviously the destructive nature of wars are increasing in intensity – that is what technology is all about. I am sure you can dig up horror stories from the 100 Years War – but what you cannot dig up is anything remotely analogous to the death toll of a single bomb such as that dropped on Hiroshima.

          Historic bubbles that you have identified had one thing in common – they were local and hence their negative effects were localized. The US$ bubble is global and its negative effects are global – there will be no hiding place and there is nothing that can be done to insulate yourself from these effects.

          Additionally participation in the South Sea Bubble, or in Tulip mania or any of the rest was entirely voluntary. Conversely participation in the US$ bubble is compulsory and you and me along with everyone else are in it up to our necks whether we like it or not.

          • Martinned

            current wars – why there are so many of them

            Euh, there are fewer wars now, with fewer casualties, than just about any time before in the history of humankind.

          • pretzelattack

            are you including “police actions” as the u.s. characterized the war in vietnam, and subsequent wars, as actual wars?

  • BrianFujisan

    Republicofscotland
    May 28, 2019 at 16:46

    Said –

    ” There’s a hell of a lot you haven’t realised with regards to the skullduggery of the British state and Better Together, during the 2014 indyref, but I’d be here all day pointing out their machinations to keep Scotland in the union.”

    And very well said Too RoS.. Too Quick are the Tories, and ScotLab to forget, And Discard all Promises Made to Scotland in the 2014 Indy Ref.. Better together they cried.. A Family of Equals they wailed. Only way to stay in the EU they Lied.

    Anyway RoS .. Here is a couple of Paragraphs from An Open Letter to Ruthie From The Wee Ginger Dug –

    ” …. We’re sick the back teeth of listening to your stuck record. You’re very keen for the SNP to respect the result of the 2014 referendum, but you’re not so keen on respecting the promises and commitments that your own party made in order to win it. The people who need to be held to account for the outcome of popular votes are not the people who lost them, it’s the people who won them. Democracy didn’t stop in 2014. The people of Scotland did not hand you and your party a blank cheque to do with us as you please for as long as it suits you. The No vote in 2014 was a conditional vote. It was conditional on the promises and commitments of the Better Together campaign which you actively supported. You’ve failed to fulfil your party’s commitments. We are here now on the verge of a second referendum because of your failures, your shortcomings, your betrayal of your promises. You don’t get a free pass. You don’t get to cry that it’s only the SNP that needs to be held to account.

    One of the promises that your party made was that the powers of the Scottish parliament would be enshrined in law, and that no Westminster government would ever make any changes to the devolution settlement without the express consent of Holyrood. Remember that Ruth? Because we do. We also remember that the UK Supreme Court ruled that this provision in the Scotland Act has no legal force, we remember that the supposed legal guarantee of the permanence of Holyrood and the devolution settlement was nothing more than meaningless sophistry. We remember that you told us that the only way Scotland could remain in the EU was to vote against independence. We remember that you told us that if Scotland wanted an independence referendum that the people of Scotland needed to vote for a party which had that as a manifesto commitment, and then that party needed to secure a majority the Scottish Parliament..”

    Well Then.. What are we waiting For?

      • BrianFujisan

        Indeed Hatuey

        The Wee Ginger Dug is Very good, I’ve heard him speak several times. Got a couple of his books Too.

    • nevermind

      Wow Brian, ‘what are we waiting for’ indeed. We ought to have a wee indy meeting in the greenery of DTRH, by word of mouth and nothing else.
      If everyone brings ideas and thoughts, exchange experiences and observations, something should come of it. No phones, no ipads or computers, word of mouth only.

      • BrianFujisan

        That’s a Brilliant Idea Nevermind.. If even for a short time.. See yas Soonish.

  • giyane

    Since the only thing the Tories could hink of doing on their day of retribution in the polls was to attack Labour about AS, I have to say I agree with Remain Milburn, not Leave Mc Lusmy about brexit.

    The only bad thing about the EU is its potential to evolve as a military entity and Norway ÷ would curtail that. McLusky might like sitting on the board’s of the neo-con military industry but that is the reverse of what Corbyn believes.

    Milburn is that Blarite deceiver who using the LIB DEMS as foliage cover, will harness the military industry to illegal war.

    In short, we’ve seen it all before and it all stinks.
    Apart from the Greens nobody has any new ideas

    • Hatuey

      What difference would it make if the EU evolved towards a common defence policy? It wouldn’t necessarily mean more arms being bought or used, might even mean less, and it would go a long way towards putting an end to NATO which definitely is a malignant force in the world.

      • giyane

        Hatuey

        Germany has run the Muslim Brotherhood 12 year assault on the Syrian people. Part of the read on that assault has failed is the lack of trust between EU allies resulting from brexit.

        Too many crooks in the brothel.

          • giyane

            Hatuey
            https://www.voltairenet.org/article190102.html

            meddling fiddling peddling all sounds so innocuous until you realise that 20 million people lost their homes in this European attack on Islam.

            the Zionist professional shootings in Christchurch mosque and the Zionist professional bombings in Sri Lanka are both designed to weapomse sectarian hate between the nominal parties of Christianity and Islam. the fact is that neither religions teach anybody either to blow up themselves nor any other living innocent human being.
            using Alt Right military grade weapons and suicide bombs is Israel’s attempt to de stabilise Islam and Christianity for the benefit of Zion.

            Similarly the Zionists stoke hatred in Europe by flooding EU countries with desparate refugees from around the Muslim world. Looking at the EU elections their bloody policy seems to work.

          • SA

            Giyane
            Didn’t really read your posts, stopped when I read Ferman meddling. I agree with Hatuey, a European army is a good step towards European political indipendence. The MB and salafists have always been supported by UKUS and Germany has no say invfillowing.

  • Wikikettle

    Funny how things turn around. Our spooks thought, as usual, they would help/meddle in the US elections, link Trump to Russia and show how a dossier should be composed. And our man, as usual, help, guide the boys at Langley and the FBI. I bet the candles are burning tonight on damage limitation and who should be scapegoated. We cant have the trail leading back to………Perhaps there was another reason why May had to go now ? and take all the heat after Trump orders release of all classified documents.

  • Gary

    There were so many disingenuous claims of ‘Remain won’ on the election night special. Generally people vote for the party they’ve always voted for DESPITE disagreeing with some of their policies, even major ones. Hence Scottish support for Labour in years gone by in spite of Labour’s pro nuclear stance and the Scottish public’s ANTI nuclear stance.

    The percentage which MOVED to other parties CAN be counted as either ‘Remain’ of ‘Leave’ votes but otherwise you can’t draw any inference. In theory the Tories are Leave just as in theory Labour wants a second referendum (see T&Cs)

    What DID goad me was Alistair Campbell, seeking the moral high ground (Satan has a conscience?) by voting LibDem and saying so on national TV then feigning outrage when expelled. Then, when interviewed he somehow managed to bring anti-Semitism into it. He’s smearing his own leader! Nothing is killing the Labour vote faster than the Blairites desperately trying to rid themselves of Corbyn at any cost, even at the cost of trashing the party permanently. He, and many others are quick to blame Corbyn personally for the policies they feel cost them votes (I’ll come back to that) but these policies were the result of membership votes, unlike Blair, Corbyn takes policies FROM the members rather than dictate TO the members. If Campbell wants to blame someone it should be the membership (so perhaps he SHOULD walk away from Labour and admit to being a neocon hawk!

    But, on the point of their (Labour) not having a strong enough ‘Remain’ policy and this resulting in the pounding at the polls, this is a lose/lose situation. Had Labour started out with a ‘Second Referendum’ policy they would STILL have gotten a pounding. So many Labour voters (not members perhaps) in their Northern Heartlands voted for Brexit and want the vote honoured by their own party (especially after they voted in Parliament to do exactly that!) Whatever Labour do now, the next GE looks as bad, perhaps worse for them if Brexit has not already been resolved (and I don’t see that happening)

    The SNP policy (although I don’t actually agree with it – NB I still voted for them) is at least CLEAR and does tie in well with voter opinion.

    I do note however the contrast between how LibDem results and SNP results were reported. The LibDems are having a ‘surge’ or a ‘renaissance’ helped by their ‘Bollock to Brexit’ policy BUT the SNP, as we are told by Sarah Smith (daughter of the late John Smith leader of the Labour Party so how COULD we think she’s even REMOTELY biased) got an increased share of the vote ONLY because they specifically asked the electorate to ‘lend them their vote’ on the subject of the EU ONLY. So the LibDems got REAL votes and the SNP got made up votes or some such nonsense. It’s not the first time the BBC and Smith in particular have pulled this stunt.

    For how long will the BBC and our printed press continue to pretend that SNP voters are not actually SNP supporters! It passes by almost unnoticed but it is the worst case of bias I have ever seen. SNP are a long established party, a party of government and by far the largest in Scotland. BBC interviewers elsewhere seem to be blissfully unaware of this, Ian Blackford was on BBC Breakfast being asked if the SNP increase was some kind of protest vote and had to remind the interviewer that this can’t be the case as SNP in Scotland IS the government, voters would be protesting if they voted Labour etc. I’m still shocked that this has to be explained to a JOURNALIST working for a major broadcaster, their lack of knowledge is no excuse, basic research for an interview (Wikipedia even?) would reveal basic facts that even members of the public should know…

    • Wikikettle

      Gary. Yes, these highly paid BBC people are not Journalists. They are stenographers. All passing on the days talking points, distributed by the Initiative…that’s where the money is. Hundreds of thousands per annum. Austerity, when it comes to the BBC, as it will.

    • Vivian O'Blivion

      Regards the BBC fulfilling its (altered under Cameron) mandate to promote BRITISHNESS, Smith’s contribution is just one example of the blizzard of mendacious coverage that engulfs us. Manipulated graphics, Menthorn Media, outrageously dishonest coverup of Menthorn Media …. the list goes on.
      My question is why does the SNP play along with the BBC? Why not boycott the organisation, convene a media event to explain why and extol all other Indy supporters to hold a solid front.

  • Antonym

    The UK & US spooks definitely learned a lot from the Pakistan spooks: spying and cheating their own population as default policy; employing terrorists groups as common practice; reintroduce torture; keeping the biggest and secret budget of the whole government; keep in a permanent state of war/ fear to stay relevant. In other words, taking the bottom basin road over the high road for short term success, ending up with massive longterm failure.
    All for a few $unni $nake oil barrel$ more.

  • SA

    The European Parliament elections have thrown out a lot of unforeseen side effects. The disinterest displayed by some parties in the election and the vehemence of electioneering using single policy issues and the tendency by the voters to try and use the elections as a protest vote has led to an almost self fulfilling prophecy of producing a European Parliament that will be marred with constant undermining especially by the extreme right. The current controversy about top jobs in Europe also underlines the fact that one of the true reasons for the often apparent ( sometimes also very real) lack of democracy regarding the eu decisions is actually due to the autocratic way in which nationally elected leaders try to force their decisions.

    • Laguerre

      “has led to an almost self fulfilling prophecy of producing a European Parliament that will be marred with constant undermining especially by the extreme right. ”

      That’s what Farage and buddies maintain, not necessarily actually the case. It’s all part of the far right narrative in Britain, not that on the continent. A contest over the appointment of a new president of the council is not, as you seem to believe (following the Brexit press in Britain, even the Guardian), necessarily a sign of the imminent collapse of the EU, nor of anti-democratic processes, which are much easier to find in Westminster. Rather it is a normal event. What else do you expect – a coronation of a single candidate, like Theresa May?

      • SA

        My sources of information are not the Guardian or BBC . France 24 is refreshingly much better. I am in no way suggesting that this is the demise of the EU but I am suggesting that the lack of engagement by electors produces skewed results often at odds with those of the leaders.
        The interesting thing is that the U.K. now is effectively sidelined in all this discussion.

        • Laguerre

          I’ll have to watch France 24 a bit more to see if I can figure out what you’re referring to (Was it France 24 English, who employ a lot of British journalists?). I watch quite a bit of French TV, especially at the moment, but I can’t say I got the same impression. The EP in confusion because of far right undermining is usually a Brexiter threat (Farage). All that has calmed down, because the far right didn’t do as well as feared. Macron’s vote held up well, for example, and other parties such as the Greens did better than the far right. It was the big parties who did badly. Les Républicains did catastrophically, much like the Tories.

          • Martinned

            Farage is hardly ever there, and most of the other far right aren’t much better. How on earth did you get the impression that they’re undermining anything?

          • Laguerre

            “How on earth did you get the impression that they’re undermining anything?”

            That was SA who thinks that, not me.

          • Iain Stewart

            “All that has calmed down, because the far right didn’t do as well as feared.”
            And also because they are too xenophobic to make friends with each other (being mutually foreign) which is a pleasing irony.

        • Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh

          An aside on France 24. It is no doubt a welcome relief from the BBC, with the latter’s coverage of Scottish politics being a mix of raw metropolitan ignorance and honed indigenised malice.

          However, since the Catalan referendum I prefer to seek out other French-language channels, including Belgian and Swiss. At that juncture there seemed to me a clear, (presumably French Gov) line being pushed, in both francophone and anglophone versions of France 24’s “le Débat” program, intent on demonising and dismissing the Catalan independence movement as linguistic fascism.

          Equally disgraceful of course was the refusal of the EU leadership to even minimally defend Catalan democracy against the brutally manifest fascism of the Spanish State.

          Nevertheless, I remain pro-European as such, in hope of wiser and braver leadership…

          • Iain Stewart

            “Equally disgraceful of course was the refusal of the EU leadership to even minimally defend Catalan democracy against the brutally manifest fascism of the Spanish State.”
            It may have been disgraceful (and cowardly) but it was no surprise that a union of states which exists only to defend their interests took the side of the Spanish state. The EU is intrinsically by its very nature incapable of actively supporting any internal independence movement. Which is one of the reasons why it can never listen to Scotland before it becomes (1) independent, only after. All theories of EU support or opposition before then are merely idle speculation.

            (1) Or is “given independence” as Mary Paul put it revealingly here the other day.

          • Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh

            (Reply to Iain Stewart 16:54)

            I fully accept your point in the Realpolitik sense.

            And yet the European Parliament censured Hungary in 2018:
            http://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/press-room/20180906IPR12104/rule-of-law-in-hungary-parliament-calls-on-the-eu-to-act

            And the European Commission censured Poland in 2017:
            http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-17-2161_en.htm

            A key element seems to be Article 2 (Common Provisions of the Treaty on European Union):

            “The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities. These values are common to the Member States in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.”
            https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=celex%3A12012M002

            I confess that only just now am I realizing that the problematics of triggering such mechanisms have been an ongoing issue within Europe:

            Briefing, January 2016 (10 page PDF) –
            “Understanding the EU Rule of Law mechanisms”
            http://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/etudes/BRIE/2016/573922/EPRS_BRI%282016%29573922_EN.pdf

          • SA

            50% is not exactly great engagement is it? And a lot of these are the galvanised single issue electors and the protesters.

    • Susan Smith

      Brexit yes, which is why the SNP lost votes in 2017, being consistently and clearly pro EU . But Remain in the UK ????

      • Dave

        The SNP has built up a party vote, just like other parties, and this means their voters will vote for them even if they don’t agree with all their policies. A referendum reveals support for a particular policy across left, right and centre, but a Euro poll will complicate matters with a party vote that includes Leave and Remain.

        Many SNP support independence outside UK and EU, others support SNP as a stronger voice for Scotland party within the UK, whilst the present leadership support devolution outside UK but in EU.

  • michael norton

    If the Labour Party chant expelliarmus at listair Cambell, Blair’s spokesperson, they should also shout expelliarmus at Former Home Secretary Charles Clarke, as he claims, he also voted LibDem.

    • giyane

      Michael norton

      The ERG’s love of hard brexit is fake and opportunistic just like the Blairites love of Libdem Remain . These types of politicians are just vote sniffers. Nobody should take any notice of completely unprincipled con artists trying to pose in thecsunshine of popular opinion.

      The fact that the ERG used brexit solely as a photo opportunity to self glamorise their own credentials as future leaders- biceps tan glistening fat rolls on their necks-rather than help May deliver Brexit, tells us all we need to know about Clark and Milburn.

      • michael norton

        I thought the ERG were Tories, I am discussing the Labour Party.

        If Alistair Campbell, Tony Blair’s spokeperson is thrown out of the Labour Party for declaring he voted LibDem, then other high ups in Labour should likewize be thrown under buses.

        • giyane

          Michael Norton

          Well if you don’t want to read what I said , no problem. these polticians are not interested in policy, which is what they’re paid to do. They’re only interested in posing in impossible postures to attract the attention of the electorate to themselves. Both from the Left and right hand side of the political divide.

  • Martinned

    I know that we’ve all agreed that Westminster Magistrates Court is profoundly evil, due it it sentencing Julian Assange to a custodial sentence for a crime he willingly and knowingly committed, but you’ll all be entertained to hear that it just issued summons to Boris Johnson for him to appear in the Crown Court on three charges of misconduct in public office: https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn%3Aaaid%3Ascds%3AUS%3Aa7112430-dff9-45d8-87a0-7c93aac05fa4

  • Glasshopper

    30% of Lib Dems voted Leave. Many Greens are also leavers having been long-standing critics of the outrageous CAP and the appalling Fisheries policy. Ditto SNP.

    What will become increasing clear in the future is that Scotland, Ireland and England need to break away from the slippery rule of Brussels.

  • mike

    Should be a no-brainer for Corbyn: Listen to the voters/ordinary members or to the Centrist establishment bubble?

    Roll on Scottish independence. Roll on a socialist Government in London.

    Both would be very good for these islands.

    • Martinned

      Corbyn has many problems, but I don’t think too much exposure to the “centrist establishment bubble” is one of them…

    • MJ

      Should be, but he’s struggling to hold his party together. It’s useful to understand why Corbyn is a staunch Leaver and the sizeble neocon faction in his party is trying to drag him in the other direction. It’s because he wants to renationalise utility companies and his opponents don’t.

      • Martinned

        For the 1 millionth time: EU law has no bearing on the nationalisation or privatisation of anything. Lots of EU Member States have state-owned utility companies.

        • michael norton

          As I understand it, about three quarters of the Nuclear Electricity Generation in France is owned by The French State.
          The EDF/Areva people are constructing Hinkley Point C in Somerset.
          EDF/Areva is majority owned by The French State.

        • Loony

          EU law has a significant bearing on the ability of any government to direct industrial policy in what it perceives to be in its national interest.

          For example British Steel has collapsed and naturally is seeking funding to allow it to continue operations. Funding has been denied by the UK government on the grounds that were they to provide funding then this would conflict with EU law on state aid. It is eminently reasonable for any government to decide that an indigenous steel industry is desirable for strategic reasons. EU Law removes all such discretion from national governments.

          In November 2018 the ECJ ruled that British government participation in the electricity market via its Capacity Auction Scheme was illegal, and consequently the British Government was required to suspend the Capacity Auction scheme. Therefore the British government lacks the discretion to pursue an energy policy that it has determined to be the optimal policy for serving the national interest.

          It is beyond doubt that many aspects of Corbyn’s proposed industrial policies would find themselves open to challenge at the EU level. Irrespective of any ultimate EU determination the very act of referral would slow down the ability to enact policy and add cost and complexity to the proposed policies.

          You are free to hold any view that you wish on the EU, but the fact that you need to tell lies about the reality of the EU is perhaps indicative that you understand that it is not designed to act in the best interests of the populations that it purports to rule over.

          • Martinned

            @Loony: Yes, EU law constrains lots of things. Just not the UK government’s ability to nationalise utilities. Mind your goalposts…

          • Loony

            The purpose behind nationalizing any industry is for a national government to direct industrial policy in a manner that it deems to be in the national interest. Nationalization is not only method by which a government may seek to direct industrial policy.

            The EU acts to limit the ability of national governments to direct national industrial policy. In the UK Corbyn has many opponents and should he seek to implement his stated policies then he would be impeded from doing so by appeals to the EU. To suggest otherwise is flat out false, and you are aware that the core of your argument is a lie.

            But then the core of substantially all EU arguments are lies. Take prohibition on electro pulse fishing as another example of EU lies – where prohibition is defined as meaning permissible.

          • giyane

            Loony

            British Steel has only collapsed because of Brexit. The EU is playing hard ball against British Industry and delaying essential administrative functions. the other cause of British Steel’s demise is the Alt Right Tory ERG who have delayed Mrs May’s Withdrawal Agreement so that British Steel customers don’t know what tariff will apply to their purchases.

            The ERG don’t care about the failure of British Companies. They make their money through gambling or hedgeing on the failure of companies. in a just world, these gamblers ought to be banned from holding public office.

            I shall be glad when Corbyn wins the upcoming GE and Fox is run out of his burrow.
            If they hold a second referendum we will remain in the EU.

        • Hatuey

          It isn’t black and white and decisions in terms of whether the ECJ might become involved or object to nationalisations are made on a case by case basis. A lot of emphasis would be put on how it was done too, if it was done openly and with forewarnings etc., and the more thorny question of how a nationalisation might skew the market, if at all.

          It’s assumed that nationalising railtrack, for example, would be fine since train operators would still be able to conduct business freely on those nationalised tracks,

        • MJ

          “Lots of EU Member States have state-owned utility companies”

          Indeed. When a country joins the EU it graciously permits that country to retain any nationalised companies it owns. That however is not the point. The point is that, once in the EU, a country is not permitted to nationalise anything.

          • MJ

            It’s examples of where an EU country has nationalised something since it was an EU member that you need.

          • Salford Lad

            Under Article 106, the EU prohibits public monopolies exercising exclusive rights where this violates EU competition rules.
            The EU’s Court of Justice has interpreted Article 106 as giving private companies the right to argue before the national courts that services should continue to be open to private-sector competition. Nationalised services are prima facie suspect and must be analysed by the judiciary for their “necessity”.
            Thus the EU has given companies a legal right to run to court to scupper programmes of public ownership, and use legalities to thwart any attempt at Nationalisation
            The fact that EU law has this effect may seem astonishing. Many on the Left seem unaware of it.

  • Martinned

    Wait, you’re going to undermine an investigation into antisemitism by accusing Jewish People of secretly controlling everything? #Facepalm

    Also, you remember that the EHRC was set up by the previous Labour government?

    • Monteverdi

      I think you’re going OTT with the comment ” accusing Jewish people of secretly controlling everything ” as I said nothing of the sort. I simply questioned the disappearance of information on the Chair and CEO of the EHRC. Your reply seems to suggest diversion as a tactic in response to a simple enquiry for information.

    • Republicofscotland

      Martinned.

      Not to say that the Labour doesn’t have unsavoury figures who push the anti-Semitic trope, it has, just like the Tory party has similar figures who push the Islam is bad trope.

      The timing of this investigation is a fortunate one as the Tories suffered as did Labour badly in the EU elections. However the EHRC’s budget has been cut by 70% since 2010. One has to wonder, if with such cuts it can carry out an investigation properly and if so, if the consequences of a favourable outcome will see its budget restored by the Tories.

1 2 3 4

Comments are closed.