Archive | 16:47

There is no cheat mode

8 Sep

An accurate account of the only two ways Scotland can gain her independence.

Wee Ginger Dug

There’s a very interesting, thoughtful, and well-considered blog article doing the rounds on social media, which posits the view that it’s possible that Scotland could become independent if the Scottish Government develops its own written constitution, without any need for a referendum or plebiscite election.

It’s a nice idea, but here’s the thing. There is no cheat mode in the constitutional game. There are no short cuts. There are no back doors. There is no magic bullet. The only way that Scotland can achieve independence – and crucially have that independence recognised by the international community – is following a popular vote in which a majority of the Scottish electorate explicitly opt for independence and provide a cast iron popular mandate for the creation of an independent Scottish state. That’s it. That’s the only way. No other options are available. No other routes are open to us.

These legalistic schemes…

View original post 1,208 more words

BBC Scotland and Scottish politics: their small part in my ‘Downfall’

8 Sep

Well done on your recovery and for blogging about it. It takes courage and I commend you. I’ve suffered from severe depression and anxiety and the road to recovery is a bumpy one.

Talking-up Scotland

Reading this in the Herald today has made me think (8.9.18):

‘Scotland’s most senior civil servant has been commended for speaking about her personal experience of mental health problems. Permanent Secretary Leslie Evans said she had worked through “several tough and very stressful episodes” in the past and had seen a health professional at one point.’

In particular, the last few words in the quote above, made me think it time to tell my own story of mental health problems.

In January 2014, I published some research revealing that BBC Scotland’s reporting had been biased against the Yes campaign. It went ‘viral’. I went viral too. BBC Scotland wrote to me, copying in my boss, THE Principal (!) condemning the research as flawed. It was, a wee bit. It had ‘secretarial errors’ of the kind most research reports have but are not exposed. BBC Scotland had used a team of…

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SNP Government acts early to prevent NHS winter crisis in 2018/19

8 Sep

Talking-up Scotland

© Andrew Milligan/Press Association

Even the Scotsman admitted that NHS Scotland did not experience the humanitarian disaster of Winter 2017/18, suffered elsewhere in the UK:

‘It is clear – both statistically and anecdotally – that the crisis is not, currently, as extreme in Scotland. Flu rates have doubled since last year and A&E admissions are up by 20 per cent, with some people waiting longer than four hours for treatment, but though non-urgent operations have been postponed in some areas, there has been no blanket cancellation.’

Despite this, the Scottish government has acted early to make sure there is no such development in the Winter to come. See this from yesterday:

‘A further £10 million will be allocated to NHS boards to help cope with added pressures over the winter months. Provided earlier than ever before, the funding, which comes on top of the £9 million already…

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‘Hefty’ North Sea profits call for Norwegian-style taxation but will probably be ignored

8 Sep

Talking-up Scotland

In Energy Voice yesterday:

‘Neptune Energy’s first ever results reveal hefty profit. Neptune Energy’s inaugural set of financial results revealed profits in excess of £250 million in the first half of 2018. Revenues were just shy of £800m as the company pumped out 166,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day during the reporting period. Pre-tax profits totalled £262m at Neptune, which did not own any producing assets last year.’

However, it seems unlikely the UK Treasury will meaningfully tax this income any more than it did the profits of Shell (see diagram above) in the previous two years. Professor Richard Murphy has an explanation:

‘But why does the Treasury care? If it assists the spin that Scotland cannot survive on its own, I suspect that’s considered a price worth paying. And I would not be at all surprised if that is part of the political motivation for this.’


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North Sea expected to produce much more oil and revenue than expected

8 Sep

Talking-up Scotland

According to a report in Energy Voice yesterday:

‘Top petro-economist Alex Kemp will soon deliver a more “bullish” forecast for North Sea oil production out to 2050. The Aberdeen University professor said higher than expected Brent crude prices and lower costs meant existing predictions could be too conservative. His last study estimated that nearly 11 billion more barrels of oil would be produced between 2017 and 2050 with Brent around $60 per barrel. But with prices hovering between $70 and $80 for the last few months, Prof Kemp and his colleagues at the institution could deliver more optimism.’

This is a sign that more conservative, cautious, opinion is catching up with more alert thinking revealed in earlier reports here:

Scottish crude oil value surges to record level in more than 3 years

A fifth prediction of oil rising to $100 per barrel for Scottish oil, suggests pre-tax revenue of around…

View original post 148 more words

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