Now Scotland Launched 130

Last night Now Scotland, the new mass membership campaigning organisation intended to embrace the entire Yes Movement, was launched and immediately gained its first 1,000 paid up individuals. This is the website to join up. I am going to repeat here my post on its origin and purpose, then answer a few questions that arose on social media during last night’s launch:

There is a real need for a campaigning organisation for Scottish Independence which people can join and whose sole focus is attaining Independence early, as a matter of urgency. Now Scotland, of which I am an elected committee member, is being launched to fill that gap. It is not a political party, will not stand candidates and all who support Scottish Independence as an overriding political priority are welcome. It is aimed to be the mass membership organisation to which everybody in the wider Yes Movement can belong.

It is intended that it will improve on 2014’s Yes Scotland by going into the campaign with a membership, funds and a democratic structure.

Now Scotland grew out of a series of assemblies last year organised by AUOB, and the aim is to take the kind of energy and unity generated by AUOB and extend it from marching and into other areas of campaigning. But like AUOB, it is the agency and energy of the people which will drive the activity. Now Scotland is not, and will not become, top down.

All of us who believe in the Independence of Scotland need to look beyond what divides us – and it would be dishonest to fail to note divisions have been deepening. We need to concentrate on what unites us, move forward to Independence on an irresistible popular wave, and then set about building that better country of our own.

To answer the questions that have arisen, Now Scotland is not linked to any political party, or website, and will not support any political party. It is a single issue campaign for Independence. Members of several parties are on the committee, and remember the Yes Movement is much wider than any party or parties – for example, the obvious Yes parties aside, polls consistently show that between 30 and 40% of Labour voters in Scotland support Independence. All are welcome, of all parties and none.

We do not take positions on issues other than Independence. The entire aim is for everyone to unite together just for the purpose of campaigning for Independence. It is very much an organisation set up to generate real campaigning activities in which you can participate. It does not matter what your view is on any individual, that is irrelevant to the wider cause of Scotland. We embrace socialists and capitalists. We have pro-EU and anti-EU members. The common denominator is that Scotland must be free to make its own decisions, and not have them imposed on us from Westminster.

There are different parties and organisations available for people to also join to pursue particular issues and it is good that people do so. We do not ask anyone to change their other political activity, if any. All we ask is that differences are left at the door of Now Scotland and that Independence supporters unite to campaign together. It is to be very much a membership-led organisation, and my view, or any individual’s view, is worth no more than that of any other worker for Independence.

The Independence Movement needs this. Let us now build the momentum that will take us to national freedom.


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130 thoughts on “Now Scotland Launched

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  • Allan L

    I fully support this new venture and would like to subscribe, however I won’t leave credit card details on others IT systems without much more confidence in the digital security offered. Do you know if a PayPal option will be available soon like I do for this site.

    Keep up your good work Craig, it’s a privilege to read your insights based on your experience which are from a rare world most of don’t have a clue about.

    • craig Post author

      The question was being asked in the committee last night Alan. I think the site developers are a bit knackered at the minute after the struggle to meet the launch deadline.

      • BrianFujisan

        Joined last night Craig. that’s Four of us so far from Inverclyde for Independence on board. It’s a great Idea indeed, and right when needed with all the squabbling that’s been going on

        I enjoyed your chat with Dr Mark McNaught.. Plenty of great insights yours and Alex Salmond court case.
        Mark has worked his socks off Re the Constitution. Well done on that talk to you both.

        Don’t let them grind you down.

    • Jon

      Yeah, it’s interesting to see that the site handles credit card information itself. That is not always wise – it attracts risk that a small org is not always able to handle competently. Websites that do not have a full-time (and security-aware) tech team are best implementing a payment system like WorldPay, which works on its own domain, and allows the small org to avoid handling/recording card details themselves.

      • Lyn Hay

        Wrong, the site is using Stripe with embedded javascript that removes all risk from the site entirely. Card details bypass the site and go straight from the browser to the PSP. Simple enough to check … unless perhaps your intention was to work against Scottish liberation by spiking this excellent initiative.

        • Jon

          Hi Lyn. I think you are right on the technical aspect – I’ve had a closer look at the page, and the Stripe widget injects an iframe onto the page. Thus, JavaScript belonging to the main site should not be able to record it.

          Your worry that I am up to no good is misplaced. As I note elsewhere in the comments, I was thinking of joining, despite not being Scottish or in Scotland.

  • DunGroanin

    What is the opinion of non-Scotland residents joining? Does one have to be a Scot?
    What about other Brits who want to support Scotland finally achieve freedom long after the rest of Empire has escaped from direct control by the Ancients?

    I’ll buy a badge to wear around London!

    • Skip_NC

      I would like to know the answer to that too. I am in North Carolina. I hope there will also be guidance on how much those not entitled to vote in Scottish elections can donate.

    • Jon

      I’d be keen to know this too – West Midlands here, and happy to support. A message on the site, to say that folks outside Scotland are welcome, would be great.

      • BrianFujisan

        Jon. It’s not us here in Scotland that Abuse ” folks outside Scotland ” That would be the So called UK .Gov…. Like Ripping Valued highland Couples from Canada away. Ect

    • Graham

      Craig, I am in Nova Scotia, home of the highest concentration of Scottish diaspora and Scots Gaelic language and music in the world. I expect moral support for Scottish independence could be garnered here. (The issue is scantily addressed by media here.)

      If they were rallied, they could bring political pressure on Stephen MacNeil (like FM) or even Justin Trudeau (PM) to speak in favour of self determination and friendship between Canada and Scotland. The latent sentiment amongst Canadians for that connection should not be underestimated, and I expect it would be comforting and inspiring to audiences in Scotland too. A shout out from Canada lends a sense of international legitimacy.

      ‘My question is, in your experience with diplomacy, do you see any significant value in this? Is there anything like this already in motion?

      • Auld Glass

        I see enormous value in this and I am raising it with Now Scotland. IMHO the Scots have been a bit shy about this, we have a lot to learn from the Irish. The Scottish Government website references a document ‘The Scottish Diaspora and Diaspora Strategy: Insights and lessons from Ireland (2009)’

        • Graham

          Thank you. For what it’s worth, I’m a 36 year old native Scottish musician with a fixated passion for Celtic music, and I’ve dabbled in the local NS music scene and have established key contacts in my seven years here. I’m also a talented persuasive writer, and in person I’m often well received by those of Scottish descent. I’m not saying I’m the best or the only, but with hand on heart I dare say I could be something of a prophet in delivering this. Hook me up. Craig has my email address.

      • Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh


        I wonder if you are aware of Michael Newton’s landmark dual-language compendium of primary-source material from Gaelic émigrés to Canada –

        ‘SEANCHAIDH NA COILLE/ MEMORY-KEEPER OF THE FOREST: Anthology of Scottish Gaelic Literature of Canada’ (Edited by MICHAEL NEWTON, Cape Breton University Press, Sydney, Nova Scotia, 2015.)

        QUOTE: “[R]ecent research has revealed that Scottish Gaelic was the third most spoken European language at the time of (Canadian) Confederation.”

        I wrote a full review here:

        • Graham

          I was not aware, sounds like I could learn more of the background of the Canadian Gael experience from that book and I’ll go find it. Tapadh Leibh.

          I read your article and recognize many of the themes from my experience here, in short I perceive that most Bretoners whose grandparents spoke Gaelic see that as ‘the past’ and that it was shunned as inferior. It’s not dead and buried yet though, I trust you know of the Gaelic college in Cape Breton.

          I’m ‘trying’ to learn Gaelic (Duolingo app and old episodes of Speaking Our Language!) but for obvious reasons any degree of immersion here is difficult.

      • emersonreturn

        do you really think justin would support separation—quebec might happily embrace the notion but ottawa? petition alberta, quebec you might find a positive response. ottawa will ignore, hold its nose & hope you go away & that no heard you. best of luck though. wish you all the best.

        • Graham

          Yeah that’s probably true, doh! The Ottawa political class won’t do anything unless it benefits themselves, and Quebec separatism is a sore spot. Then again Quebec was never a sovereign country and some 5 million Canadians are of Scottish descent.

          I learned today we just got a new Premier in Nova Scotia, one Mr. Iain Rankin, he’s only 37 and he was born in Cape Breton. He is in Justin Trudeau’s Liberal party. Whether he could be lobbied by his kinsmen into an endorsement, or wouldn’t dare upset Jussie, time may tell.

          (For those unaware Nova Scotia = New Scotland = Alba Nuadh.)

  • Alf Baird

    Craig, I would support May’s election as being a plebiscite on independence. This policy option can be put on any party’s manifesto. The total Scotland List vote could be used to that effect. As Solidarity proposed, a positive 50%+ national vote in favour of independence can then be taken to the UN (and other supra national bodies) for recognition. In my view you would be the best person to lead such an initiative. Perhaps this is something ‘Now Scotland’ could consider as a strategy to deliver independence in the near future. Many thanks.

    • Alf Baird

      Craig, in addition, there may be a role for Now Scotland to consider ‘listing’ Scotland with UN C-24, and to give advance notice to it of any upcoming plebiscite election on independence. You will no doubt be well aware of C-24 which is:

      “The Special Committee on the Situation with regard to the implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence of Colonial Countries and Peoples is also known as the Special Committee on Decolonization, or C-24. The C-24 was established in 1961 by the General Assembly (GA), as its subsidiary organ devoted to the issue of decolonization, pursuant to GA resolution 1654 (XVI) of 27 November 1961.”

      “C-24 mandate
      In accordance with GA resolution 1654 (XVI), the C-24 was mandated to (i) examine the application of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples (GA resolution 1514 (XV) of 14 December 1960, hereafter referred to as the “Declaration”) and (ii) to make suggestions and recommendations on the progress and extent of the implementation of the Declaration. The C-24 commenced its work in 1962.

      The C-24 annually reviews the list of Non-Self-Governing Territories to which the Declaration is applicable. It also hears statements from representatives of the Non-Self-Governing Territories at its annual sessions, dispatches visiting missions to Non-Self-Governing Territories and annually organizes regional seminars.”

      According to the UN, a ‘listing’ (of the Non-Self-Governing Scottish people/territory) requires the support of a UN member state. That should hopefully not be too difficult given the number of former colonies that are now member states.

      • Stephen

        Had a look at the relevant pages on U N Website. Not sure our current constitutional set up falls within the scope of C-24. Happy to be persuaded otherwise and as a solicitor (and sometime law lecturer) of some 40 years experience would happily devote time to any such process if it is viable. Do you have more info Alf?

        • Alf Baird

          Stephen, I have previously asked the UN how Scotland may be ‘listed’ (for decolonisation, i.e. independence) and they responded to the effect that this merely required another member state to propose Scotland’s listing. That does not appear too onerous a task. Though doubtless international politics may come into play.

          Ireland, which was also a part of the UK ‘union’, appears to be regarded by the UN as a former British colony. So I do not see any difficulty with Scotland going the decolonisation route. And it seems a relatively straightforward matter to demonstrate that Scotland is treated as a colony, given our enforced EU exit, refusal of mandated referendums etc.

          As for ‘our constitutional set up’, yes, I think to a large extent we were ‘set up’. We are nevertheless led to believe Scotland is a sovereign signatory party to a treaty-based alliance, however Scotland seems unable to exert its sovereignty. Many Scots have always maintained that a majority of Scotland’s elected MP’s may withdraw Scotland from its UK alliance, however Scotland’s MP’s refuse to do so, and now after three successive majorities of ‘nationalist’ MP’s. Hence the current constitutional set-up appears to have become a barrier to democracy and independence.

          If Scotland’s MP’s did withdraw from Westminster and seek to re-establish the parliament of an independent Scottish state then the matter of Scots asserting sovereignty would no longer be hypothetical. A Scottish court would be unable to consider such a matter adequately until it becomes reality, i.e. until after Scottish MP’s withdrew from Westminster, and assuming anyone wanted to object to that action. I would have liked to have seen a Scottish court consider this matter once it is no longer hypothetical, not least because the Treaty of Union purports to protect the very existence of what we call the Scottish legal system.

          So, given the lack of courage of Scotland’s allegedly ‘nationalist’ MP’s, this leaves the UN C-24 route as an option to explore.

          • Stephen

            Thanks for the reply Alf. I will look into the listing process. We share the same wish for Independence, but I think we differ in relation to the terms of your final paragraph. I have major concerns about certain aspects of the SNP but I am not willing to air these in forums that give encouragement to unionists and provide ammunition for fake Indies. My focus is on securing independence by what ever means are available, always taking account of the need to secure de jure recognition as part of that process. Elections in an Independent Scotland are where I will register my discontent with the SNP. I hope that in the upcoming elections others take the same approach.

    • BrianFujisan

      Cheers for that Mark.. Bookmarked their site, they sound like a great group of people.

  • John

    I’m all for Scottish independence if we can use the 1,000 years of coal under the ground and can exploit the oil and gas off the West coast i.e. can use Scottish resources for the benefit of the people but the SNP are closing these down slowly but surely to destroy the country with “renewables” that are anything but as they are now a feminist globalist party not an independence party. I left the party after hearing Sturgeon speak at the Caird Hall in Dundee in 2018 I think it was where it was clear she was not a democrat and was in fact a feminist control freak. There were gasps around me in the audience of SNP party members at many of the things she was saying, I left and they probably stayed.

    I am in favour of any independence party that is not globalist and shall under no circumstances ever go back into the EU.

    • Ian

      You will be free to argue or vote for whoever you like in an independent Scotland. If there is any form of decent constituion, it won’t include any political mandates. I doubt you will find a majority for continuing carbon consumption, when we have an abundance of green resources, but that is a completely separate argument to the independence one.

    • Jon

      I suspect that an independent Scotland would hold a referendum on EU membership, and the Scottish people will probably vote to agree. However, I don’t think you should use that as a way to oppose independence – independence is a good thing in its own right.

    • Glasshopper

      You’re off to Brussels and the EUro too. With massive compromises in return for access to the UK market.
      “Independent” Scotland. Soon to be the most dependent country in Europe.
      And no more Barnett Formula!
      Trebles all round.

      • Kitbee

        If only all Britnats had the same views as you. Extraordinarily most of them want to keep Scotland in this Union. Why is that do you think?.

  • Node

    I’ve been pushing this simple but effective idea for a while and will continue to do so at every opportunity … which this is 🙂

    When the constitution is written for a new Independent Scotland, it should include an obligation for all ministers to submit to public questioning by ordinary citizens, broadcast live.

    All interested citizens apply to a monthly lottery. If you win you can do the questioning yourself or nominate someone else.

    The media cannot be trusted to scrutinise our politicians – we have to do it ourselves. Could Nicola have remained in office so long if Craig, say, were allowed to question her on live TV?

  • Goose

    ‘We do not take positions on issues other than Independence.’

    Wise. Binding independence hopes to the SNP and the embedded bureaucratic Holyrood cultist courtiers who surround Sturgeon, just invites disappointment should the party’s or her fortunes wane, as seems inevitable given Sturgeon’s divisive, insular, brusque anti-democratic leadership style and instincts – the process may have begun already.

    A new apolitical movement arguing the case for inde, should, in theory, attract more support and be far more resilient.

    • Goose

      He’s always banging on about a federal UK,…when there’s no reason an independent Scotland couldn’t embrace regional diversity via federal assemblies based on the old 12 regions and islands areas, all under a new written constitution. The UK is a peculiarity in Europe in its overly centralised nature and tightly controlled London political/media gatekeepers of thought and opinion.

      If G.Brown thinks the Tories and Starmer-led Labour will ever truly let go of the decision making reins he’s completely deluded. Brown’s been kicking around this constitutional convention idea for ages; were it to happen, purely in response to Scottish revolt, then regardless of any emerging recommendations, an establishment placeman like Sir Keir Starmer would only support minor tinkering at most.

      • David

        That’s a good point. Just as what’s best for Croydon isn’t best for Clydebank, what’s best for the central belt might be very different to what’s best for the Western Isles. More local control over spending and policy is always better – bloated central government is bad.

        • Goose

          Trying to find more detail on his plan(s) and found this. From the Scotsman, dated 15th August 2014 (roughly a month before the independence referendum on 18th September 2014):

          Gordon Brown backs federalism in event of No vote

          GORDON Brown has said talks on extending devolution should begin the day after the referendum if independence is defeated as he stated that the UK would be a “federal state” within two years with Holyrood and other regions of the UK handed equal status to Westminster.
          So much for Brown’s promises. Notice how his federal UK idea is driven purely by a desire to bind Scotland in. Scotland would see little change other than its current funding model; if anything a federal UK would see Scotland facing a diminution in its status from the current model – a nation put on a par with a federal region of England! As much as I may like the idea of federalism for England coming from a region with strong regional identity, another big problem would be the hostility to federalism in other parts of England; mainly the South East, which has no collective regional identity as such. While federalism would probably have much support in the forgotten North West and North East getting the East of England and South East and even South West (as there is a strong separate Cornish identity, even a Cornish National Party) would be difficult. The Tories have always hated the idea of powerful regions and rival power structures, because like all authoritarians ,they’re control freak centralisers.

    • Rosemary MacKenzie

      Ah, that would be Nova Scotia Deb. Chuckle Chuckle! There are lots of descendants of Scots here. We’re all over the world!

  • Bill

    There is a wee irony in the signup page when you go to put in billing address details the drop down only has an option for ‘United Kingdom’ – no choice to choose Scotalnd ?

    • d+w+kemp

      These country drop downs are just a standard package provided by the payment service provider. Short of rewriting the whole thing , and I know from experience its just not worth the effort, that’s what we have until we are a new country…I cannot wait.

    • DunGroanin

      Lol. Until you actually achieve the goal it is correct. Join to get that option put on!

  • Ilya G Poimandres

    Best of luck tho you! If not even for Scotland in and of itself, the English ruling class needs a dressing down, and maybe, just maybe, losing a cousin 300 years joined at the hip might make them think.

  • Jordan

    Unfortunately this is all you get when accessing this site through TOR:

    Page cannot be found.
    The URL you requested either moved or no longer exists.
    Error Code: NB40

      • Jordan

        I need to pass the typical CAPTCA challenge but then the system blocks. with the above message. I see that the same error appears with I remember this behaviour with other NationBuilder sites (guess it was peoplesmomentum but I checked that this one works now.) So never mind.
        Thank you for your excellent reporting and publications. Good luck with the launch.

        • Goose

          Why use Tor to visit non-hidden sites? You don’t know who controls the exit nodes, it’s widely believed western govts control most the HSDir servers – they are very expensive to run and a malicious exit relay would allow a correlation attack. Tor is best thought of as a service for foreign dissidents to communicate & personnel based overseas provided by the west. If it were truly anonymous they’d move to shut it down.

          • Leonard

            At an ICO security conference a few years back I learned that GCHQ/NSA sponsored a fifth of the TOR exit nodes. They’ve probably infiltrated more than that now. The advice was to avoid TOR and use private VPNs for better security.

          • Goose

            His error message is probably due to the way the server(s) hosting this site are configured. Craig’s site has been subject to DDoS attacks – they’re incredibly easy to carry out and scale up with rented servers, and increasing sophisticated with advanced scripts, that swamp servers with SYN flood attacks.

            *In a SYN flood attack, the attacker sends repeated SYN packets to every port on the targeted server, often using a fake IP address. The server, unaware of the attack, receives multiple, apparently legitimate requests to establish communication. It responds to each attempt with a SYN-ACK packet from each open port.

    • Jon

      I’m all in favour of getting sites to work via Tor, but I don’t imagine it is very high on the developer’s priority list. They are likely to be working on a volunteer basis anyway.

      • Jordan

        I guess it is more with the infrastructure providers, and of course everything related to google. Sorry, did not want to go off topic.

  • daydreamer

    Am I missing something obvious about the purpose or method of this organisation? How can it campaign for independence without taking some sort of position on issues such as the roadmap to independence, currency, constitution etc? How are these positions going to be decided?

    • MBC

      It can facilitate a diversity of views on these issues without taking a definitive stance on any of them. Nobody has all the answers and is good if there are a variety of approaches in the pipeline. When we get independence the voters will decide which of these they are convinced by, and meanwhile, some of them may have coalesced anyway, if they are allowed expression, development, debate.

      • daydreamer

        Hi MBC
        Thanks for your answer. It seems to me you are suggesting that we campaign for independence and/or fight a potential future referendum without any answers to issues like currency, constitution etc, on the basis that we vote on these issues somehow after independence. Is this the case? Or are you suggesting that we offer temporary and false support to whatever policies the SNP come up with on the basis that they could be reversed/changed after independence? Or something else?

    • Contrary


      It doesn’t need to take a ‘position’ on anything – it’s not a political party. What it CAN do it bring together the best pieces of work – or even commission more – that give the best selections on various plans and processes.

      Dividing out the things that need to be done pre-and post-independence, as opposed to policy issues that should be decided via political parties & the electorate after independence, I think is important. That is, the skeleton of the system needs to be put in place to allow policies to happen – and it’s the how and why and in what way to build the skeleton that needs addressed, and should be the campaigning material.

      There are tons of things that needs to be thought of – for instance, we have our own NHS so it isn’t seen as important – but: can supply lines be guaranteed (medicines, consumables), will medical qualifications be recognised world wide still. These questions need informed yes/no answers – and credible solutions or reasons. If Now Scotland has enough members, it will have people that can give informed opinion on whether or not any of this needs addressed, and where to go to address it ,,, etc.

      By focusing on what needs to be sorted Now, a cohesive bare-bones on as many subjects as everyone can think of, campaigners should be able to confidently say, if a concern is raised, it it’s a problem or not and ways in which it can be resolved if it is, or why it isn’t – broadly – if it’s detail, it’s policy for afterwards in most cases. That’s just one possible aspect though.

      Things we need to set up from scratch – like currency and defence – need more detail.

      But the point is, Now Scotland can offer an arena for people to explore ideas, join the groups they want to, keep informed of areas they are interested in, offer skills they have, coordinate on various campaigns, give opinions on strategies etc etc.

      It might just get bogged down, but the possibilities are endless – if it sticks to the core principle of ‘Only Independence’ , and is determined to show the rest of Scotland that it’s not only possible, but is also much preferable to what we have.

    • nevermind

      You have to ‘trust’ that there is meat on the bone when you see it come flying towards you daydreamer…
      I very much hope that the plan for a sustainable and functioning society will emerge before activists knock on doors or persuade shoppers are bombarded with questions as to how it could work.
      My priority would be geared towards feeding and educating and enabling future generations.
      Fish is a great protein giver, but we can’t control what they eat in the wild, but we must be positive, innovative and LOCAL.
      Its what communities do together which will determine their future and that of the nation at large, imho.
      For that large landowners will have to be part of such communities, as equals and enablers, a serious challenge for day 1 of Independence. Without it a reversal of ownership and or enclosure acts of the past will be inevitable with much argument strife and bad blood being let.
      I”m not English but European and I can see it working with equal power resting at local and national level. Switzerland, landlocked betwenn large EU powerblocks could make it work, Kantons are autonomous with a small A and they hold control over some of Europes vital transit routes.
      Scotland has vast reserves of untapped alternative energies. Every island can be energy self sufficient and agriculture is able to feed its people, should they so wish to
      But I am speaking as a furtiner who loves Scotland and its people, someone who has a like mindset and who want to see it thrive on its own or as an integral part of Europe.

    • Peter Hurrell

      I’ve joined NS and asked this same Q.
      NS will not take a position on currency, EU, head of state, structure of Holyrood, NATO, etc but we cant just say we will sort all this post independence.
      There has to be a roadmap of how these issues are to be resolved. They cant just be left to the first independent snp gov to decide.

      • MBC

        The Now Scotland website is canvassing members to add their vision for Scotland. This is under the Campaign tab. It would be good if you could add yours.

  • DiggerUK

    Does anybody know why Luke Pollard, the Labour and Co-op MP for Plymouth should post in the comments section of a Mail on Sunday article on Alex Salmond the following……”This story was made up by Westminster to quash support for the Scottish National Party. They’ve got to leave the union. We must deliver the will of the Scottish people: not make up silly salmond stories, come on now.”(sic)

    As the comments stream was “moderated in advance” I’m taking it that he has made the post.

    Craig gets an article as well. The article reports his affidavit presented at his recent trial………but reports it in a way that will leave readers believing the affidavit was current news. Craig’s trial doesn’t even get mentioned.

    This article was released at midday on Saturday.

    Enjoy your Sunday morning porridge/porridge/porrage…_

  • Contrary

    I’m having trouble getting signed up to Now Scotland – but I’ve only tried it on my ancient iPad – which throws up all sorts of weird glitches all the time (but I refuse to stop using it, because I refuse to be part of the throw-away society; in fact it infuriates me the tech companies build things using lots of rare precious metals specifically NOT to last. No reason for it, hate them).

    Anyway, I’ll try it on a more modern device, and am not ready to ask if I can send a cheque yet 😉

    I’m looking forward to seeing what can come out of this – even though I’m always sceptical of large organisations, I believe the principle is good. As long as it keeps flexible, it should survive and hopefully not get bogged down. Chaos theory – one small change here may move mountains further down the line. Time to stop hitting our heads against a brick wall? Haha, let’s walk round the brick wall!

  • Dave Dine

    I wish this new venture well, the only problem I see with it is that to judge by it’s prospectus, it shares the same EU obsession as the SNP leadership, quite without regard to any terms or future political situation. It is my opinion and I may be wrong, only time will tell, that as life is proved possible outside the EU, the desire to join it as the font of all wealth and wisdom, will be rather less. It is one thing being taken out of the EU against the public will and another joining and surrendering a fair degree of your newly one autonomy.
    I understand that we need a vision of the kind of nation we want to become in order to sell independence, but wouldn’t it be a better idea to simply concentrate on the advantages of governing ourselves?

    • Contrary

      Agreed Dave,

      EU membership needs to be left as a policy area – the complexity of membership and various agreements that are needed means it would take years to negotiate (as an independent country, we would not have the uk terms and conditions). A future vote on EU membership, an informed one, is something to promise – but not getting bogged down in the argument now.

      I think a cost/benefit analysis needs to be carried out on EFTA membership – the agreements would be simpler I believe – and it might resolve interim trade issues, and keep us broadly EU compliant in the intervening time before a choice on EU membership – it would give us a chance to set up institutions for dealing with all the beaurocracy.

      But no, I think a focus assuming EU membership is wrong – we can use brexit as a reason for the union being shit – but that does not mean that just because EU membership was best for Scotland IN the union, it will be best for Scotland as an independent nation. We won’t have the same needs / wants as we did within the union – let’s think it through rationally. And let’s think it through AFTER we get independence.

    • craig Post author

      as far as I am aware, Now Scotland doesn’t have a policy on the EU, deliberately. Where are you picking this up from?

      • MBC

        Probably because of misreading reference to Brexit damage to our economy, which is cited in the context, not of uncritical benefit of EU, but of economic damage to Scotland by UK.

        • MBC

          We’ve yet to see how the UK’s new Shared Prosperity Fund is going to be distributed. But if it is in line with the stated aims of the Internal Market Bill, which aims to create the same market conditions across the UK, and override any Scottish legislation that might vary this, Scotland’s share of agricultural support may be based on a population share. This would mean, in effect, instead of receiving nearly 18% of UK farming subsidies, we would only receive 8.3%, less than 50% of what we did as part of the EU. Which would put many Scottish farmers out of business.

          The whole point of devolution, and of EU agricultural subsidy, was to create variable conditions in order to support local regional circumstances and to rebalance and redistribute.

          But the IMB drives coach and horses through that principle.

          Some people have such a hatred of the EU that they cannot see that in certain circumstances it was actually beneficial. 62% of the Scottish population certainly thought so. The IMB is a danger to Scotland and to devolution, yet some people are barely aware of it, it seems!

  • Tarla

    The rumblings from the SNP’s leadership attempted stitch up against Salmond needs to be shouted from the roof tops, and a campaign to replace Sturgeon should be lauched. The Tories inhumane attitude, and actions, towards this virus ,has resulted in over 110 000 deaths, with care homes taking the brunt due to the government/NHS England brutal orders.

    But it seems like the ‘vaccine’ programme may not work for many those that are deemed ‘vulnerable’.

    “Ten people dead after Covid outbreak at Fife care home”. Weren’t all Fife care homes vaccinated early January?

    • frankywiggles

      Unionist media see Sturgeon as a bulwark against independence, so they are not going to publicise a story that would force her to go.

      As for the care home deaths I believe one is still susceptible after only one jab. It doesn’t help that many care home staff are refusing to be vaccinated due to all manner of wild rumours.

      • Goose

        ‘Leaving UK Could Cost Scotland’s Economy At Least $15Bln Annually’

        I don’t know about that, but Brexit is likely to be the economic equivalent of getting repeatedly punched in the face for the UK. The current mess exporters are facing is just a foretaste, if you read the details of what’s ahead. The Tories seem to have blundered the nations of the UK into something they don’t and never really did fully understand. Brexit was carried mainly on the support of the older retired generation, a generation conditioned to hate the EU after decades years of Dacre and Murdoch’s Europhobia, but it’s the young being asked to reinvent the UK’s trading relationships & model now,and there’s little enthusiasm to do so, or for Brexit for that matter.

        If the SNP can time the referendum correctly the yes vote will sail through.

        • mark golding

          I hope you are right Goose. of course I am playing devil’s advocate again albeit I want to look over the horizon and prepare for the entanglement, dispute and rhubarb that ‘Bumbling’ and his mate will inject into the mix.

          • Goose

            It’s only Tory hubris, amplified by the tabloids that prevented the Tories agreeing to some sensible EEA / EFTA arrangement. I’d wager the Tories, or whoever else, will have to head back to the EU within the next 5 years to renegotiate a new comprehensive trade deal.

            Already Gove is looking for EU concessions that can get them through to 2023 i.e., they’ll seek to avoid what are likely to be terrible electoral consequences of that hubris.

          • Goose

            EEA /EFTA would have made SNP’s task more difficult too.

            If Scotland does go independent the Tories and their allies need to stop scapegoating others be it : online social media; alleged, though unproven, foreign interference etc, and admit they played the largest role in driving ‘Remain’ voting Scotland out of UK by their refusal to consult and compromise over the type of Brexit.

      • Julia Gibb

        Do you believe that?

        How much is the Trident replacement costing?
        How much is HS2 costing?
        Aircraft Carriers, Astute Class long range Nuclear submarines, CrossRail,etc etc
        We are even allocated an annual 4Billion Pounds a year for the interest on money borrowed and spent in Scotland.

        The economy of Scotland will not be based on that of an isolationist, force projecting, nuclear state consumed by its false status as a Military State sitting at the top table. If you add in the disaster of Brexit I think it safe to say your linked source is another piece of Unionist spin.

        • Julia Gibb

          Oops “money NOT spent in Scotland” angry typing leads to errors. I detest this spin used by Unionists.

      • mark golding

        A counterargument to the LSE report on the costs of Scottish independence is here written by professor of accounting, Richard Murphy.

        From his rebuttel I quote a couple of valid challenges to the report they seem entirely valid to me:

        Take, for example, the claim that the cost of trade between Scotland and England will increase by 31%. Ludicrously, this is based on the estimated cost increase in trade between the UK and Ireland in 1922. As assumptions go, I cannot think of anything more ridiculous. The UK and Ireland were pretty much still at war. The UK controlled all the routes in and out of Ireland and could charge what it liked, and technology was utterly different. To pretend that this data is in any way relevant is absurd. Sheer common sense suggests that the comparison makes no sense.

        There is a final absurdity to note. The authors seem to assume that there will be no behavioural changes despite these costs. But just look at what is happening in Ireland right now. Literally, almost overnight new freight routes that avoid costs have opened. And so would they from Scotland to avoid the claimed costs of going through England. This would be most especially the case if Scotland rejoined the EU, when import substitution from the UK might be very significant.

    • Goose

      Not sure whether that’s meant to be a threat?

      Assert Prince Andrew will be joining him and Scots will surely have second thoughts.

      • mark golding

        Prince ‘pervert’ Andrew is finished apart from trying to hide behind his mother’s stained apron. I note his company PITCH@PALACE GLOBAL LIMITED has moved out of Buckingham Palace and his last loyal director, his own private secretary, Amanda Jane Thirsk has resigned in disgust after the BBC interview with the Duke. Shame on you York, earl of Inverness, I myself would deprive you of that title and the honorary rank of vice admiral, you were an arrogant bastard on HMS Invincible.

        • Goose

          Investigative journalist Matt Kennard tweeted this 9h ago:

          Andrew Parker, head of MI5 2013-20 has been appointed Lord Chamberlain, the most senior member of Royal household, by the Queen.

          Last year, he was made Baron Parker, a life peer in Lords, and joined board of arms manufacturer Babcock.

          Britain is definitely not an oligarchy.


          Kennard has also voiced concerns about the establishment’s go-to judge Emma Arbuthnot and her handling the Assange trial and specifically her failure to recuse herself due to family links to the arms industry and security establishment including John Scarlett – he of Iraq dodgy dossier notoriety. The establishment bemoans such investigative journalism, dismissing it a conspiracy theories, but If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then….

          • Goose

            Wonder how the UK or the US would welcome a Navalny type figure with a TV channel exposing high-level graft, setting up a new ‘Anti-corruption Foundation’ as Navalny did? What would be the establishment’s response? Hypocrisy much?

            Look at all the Covid contracts that have been handed out to Tory friends with the normal tender process bypassed. Most staggering of all a whopping £22bn! on a ‘world beating’ track and trace covid system – money squandered like no tomorrow and not a word from Sir Keir or the MSM. For some perspective, South Korea have just invested £22bn in semiconductor fabrication plants – investing in future tech. And they even have a good mobile T&T app too.

        • Giyane

          Mark Golding

          The British Public School is an institution uniquely designed to pervert the minds of children. Lock em up from the ages is 5 to 8, deprive them of the male and female affection of their families and their communities till they are 18, threaten then with disgrace if they object to this emotional deprivation.
          Judge not lest ye been judged.

          Our British tradition has an executive political arm called the Foreign Office, whose members rather despise democracy, and who claim for themselves that they are totally un-political, unlike the rest of the world who call them Diplomats. This one-eyed perversion of reality is surely at the heart of the Lord Advocate’s presence in the cabinet of the devolved Scottish parliament, the ability to feign political neutrality. Fuck me. We arrived in the New World clutching our Good Book , took the land, and gave them the book, in Africa, in America and Australia.

          In places that already had a book, we British reminded the folk who had a book that their book told them to fight, and would they please fight in the following places, Yugoslavia Somalia Egypt Iraq, Syria, etc Because “””” being completely un-political ourselves, you see , it would look rather bad if we started any wars ourselves. “””. The British Public School is specifically designed to pervert its occupants into false reality. If you squeeze anything hard enough it will sweat its juice or oil. Prince Andrew is a man who has been very generously squeezed by British duplicity imho

  • Goose

    Big elections coming up and the press attacks on the SNP and for the first time, Sir Starmer, are mounting. Starmer is an incredibly uncharismatic, meanspirited; unlikeable, centre-right by instinct, policy-lite vacuum of a leader; those on the left have already reached this conclusion, now his glaring inadequacies and ideological hollowness are being cruelly exposed by a MSM ,applying 1% of the scrutiny Corbyn endured relentlessly throughout his tenure. Though my best guess is, once the elections are over the press will quickly return to zero scrutiny of this establishment stooge Tory-lite leader, whom they don’t really want to dislodge.
    The guardian keeps repeating the nonsense that he(Starmer) has closed a 20% gap in the polls, presumably in an attempt to exaggerate Corbyn’s failure? In the last real test of Corbyn’s leadership Labour polled 32% to the Tories 43%(in the GE) , an 11% gap, which makes Starmer’s progress look far less impressive. Labour were effectively leaderless for months after the election when the gap widened to 20% – the Tories had the field to themselves. The guardian needs to stop misrepresenting things.

    Do hope people can separate their dislike of the current arrogant clique at the top of the SNP and see the bigger picture of the SNP being the only viable means to independence.

      • Goose

        Always worth reading things you won’t necessarily agree with to see others’ perspectives. Online echo chambers are comforting, but probably why the western world is becoming more polarised.

  • Julia Gibb

    The two Independence supporting Parties with seats at Holyrood are now consumed with the issue of presenting self id without debate.

    Independence should be about obtaining the powers which will enable the people who live in Scotland to shape its future. It is not correct for any minority interest group to infect the body politic and put their cause above that goal.

    We need to return to having one banner – Independence.
    Following that road to restoration of Nationhood again. AFTER that you are welcome to present your case for a communist state, retaining the Queen, closing shops on a Sunday, multi faith schools, trans self ID or a million other opinions and we can let the people of Scotland decide when they pick a Party based on their manifesto alone.

    When the Parties who currently hold power at Holyrood demand we choose between supporting Independence or THEIR policies then choice is ended.

    We should have only one topic under discussion right now, and we do, unfortunately it is not Independence.

  • Goose

    Good investigative piece (a rarity) in the Guardian about the monarch’s powers to thwart legislation. It illustrates why Johnson probably can’t grant S30 permission for a second referendum even were he and his govt inclined to do so.

    Why should a sovereign have even a theoretical ability to strangle legislation early in its life?
    – Rodney Brazier, constitutional law professor

    It makes the claim we are a democracy look even more tenuous. You’d imagine a similar process exists in KSA.

    • Goose

      It’s secondary legislation which is made under the Scotland Act 1998, but I’d assume it would go through the monarch’s ‘consent’ process?

      Either way, there’s a powerful unelected advocate against moves to Scottish independence with the ear of ministers and the PM. Regardless of whether independence is realised in the near future, the UK needs a written constitution that codifies and delimits the monarch’s powers. A strong monarch and weak PM could render manifestos meaningless.

      • Goose

        The Scotland Act 1998 being the primary legislation (aka. parent Act) for which consent has already been granted. Thus the govt can grant a S30 via a simple resolution put before Hoc and Lords. They controversially used this mechanism during the Brexit process to bypass debate and scrutiny.

  • Mary

    The Heil has a go at Sturgeon.

    ‘Scottish Mail on Sunday
    Plans to introduce tough quarantine rules for travellers arriving into Scotland have “descended into chaos”, according to the Scottish Mail on Sunday. The paper reports the Scottish government has not yet contacted any airports or hotels to discuss how the scheme will work.’

    For Scotland read England. Identical

  • S

    Is it pure coincidence that Now Scotland shares its initials with the current first minister? apologies if this was covered in a faq

  • Goose

    UK’s enemies trying to ‘tear society apart’ via social media.

    Here we go again. Once it was Elvis gyrating his hips that was going to destroy western values, then punk rockers, now it’s social media and conspiracy theories. Isn’t the claim of some vast homegrown conspiracy within our borders a pathetic unsubstantiated conspiracy theory itself ? Why don’t they ever produce any evidence if we’re so heavily subject to these great unseen cyber mind flayers on social media? It looks and feels like a rehash of some McCarthyite witch hunt against legitimate domestic dissent – it belongs to another era.

    They also claim we have the tools to hit the Chinese and Russians hard. I don’t doubt it, and no doubt they too us. They’d probably welcome open cyber warfare because they have less dependency on the internet economy and tighter controls on traffic. A tit-for-tat cyberwar would be particularly atrocious for the UK. You do wonder who is advising these people?

    • Goose

      My own view is what’s really upsetting them is the decline and lack of trust in traditional media.

      Once authoritative sources like the BBC, broadsheets & tabloids are discredited and losing audience share due to their biased reporting and distortion through omission. What social media allows for is instant rebuttal and narrative challenge and TPTB hate that. Selling a WMD lie or some false flag pretext for war simply isn’t as easy as it was in an pre-internet age, when the BBC was the go-to source for information. They are trying to put the genie back in the bottle and I don’t think they can. Reported they are also facing major recruitment problems, is it any wonder the young don’t want to die in the elite’s illegal wars of choice?

      • Courtenay Barnett

        Dear Goose,

        So true with all that you just stated.

        Would you permit me to take the issue a step further with an actual illustration,

        I stand by what I stated a few years ago in alternative media.

        The relationship – or – faltered relationship between the US and Iran ( read: more widely the West) is an extremely serious issue for the world.

        Biden is seeking to continue along the same old path – but – times have changed – and shall still continue to.


        Courtenay Barnett – America Confronts Iran: History of US-Iran Relations and the Rule of LawCentre for Research on Globalisation (Global Research)

        • Goose

          I think Iran has a perfectly valid argument in saying lift sanctions first, then we’ll return to full JCPOA compliance. It was the US after all that walked out on the agreement and even before that, they hadn’t met their JCPOA obligations under Obama.

          The world finds the double standard of permitting no discussion of Israel’s nuclear weapons programme, while admonishing Iran for its seemingly nascent plans, absurdly hypocritical. Israel constantly abuses that fact of being the only nuclear armed power in the region to basically do what it likes in the ME: invading neighbouring countries’ air space at will to bomb on a regular basis.

          The US is reaching the limits of what the world will tolerate in terms of its unprovoked military aggression on Israel’s behalf too. Nobody who is looking at this truly objectively could believe the US has right on its side if they do bomb Iran.

          • Pyewacket

            Goose, yes, the duplicity of Biden’s proposal is obvious to all who have the eyes, to see. Unfortunately, blindness in some quaters appears to be mandatory. There is too, I understand, a strategic reluctance to lift the sanctions on Iran because they are all that limits them assuming full membership of the SCO. Apparently, full membership for new entries is only available for Countries not under sanction. By lifting them over the JCPOA issue, they would also be strengthening the arms of their perceived enemies.

      • Goose

        I raised the article because it has this line within it :

        Quote: “credible open source commentary” suggesting Russia tried to influence the 2014 Scottish independence referendum.

        What does “credible open source commentary” even mean? Even were that the case, and they’ve presented zero evidence to support the claim, it just looks like an attempt to tar the independence movement and justify otherwise unjustifiable measures.

        • James B

          Goose – why shouldn’t Russia try to influence a Scottish independence referendum? After all, other foreign countries such as England tried to influence the Scottish independence referendum and nobody seems too bothered about that.

          • Goose

            Craig previously covered it in a blog piece and it was mainly Ben Nimmo’s nonsense which was put before MPs then in the dodgy dossier 2 they produced. Many view Nimmo as a con artist/ propagandist, who makes mountains out of tiny social media molehills for his masters and throws around subversion accusations based on conjecture.

            He’s apparently going to work for Facebook tracking Russian influencers – a marriage made in heaven? Trouble is, we have very few journos in the west willing to challenge and debunk this stuff, lest be labelled Putin sympathises , Aaron Maté and Glenn Greenwald are among the best. Would like to see Aaron Maté interview Ben Nimmo, as he did Harding.

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