Friday, May 22, 2015

IF THERE IS SUCH A THING AS AN SNP MEMBER WITH A SHRED OF HONESTY AND AN OUNCE OF BACKBONE, CAN HE/SHE ANSWER THIS POST FOR ME?.

Am I getting this right?

Between 2007 and 2011 the tories kept the snp minority government in power at Holyrood. The snp and alex salmond are now going to join the tories in an alliance to keep the UK in the European Union in the upcoming EU Referendum.


During the Scottish independence referendum however, Labour, Tories and BTW The Communist Party were on the same side and supported a NO vote. This was described by the snp as “getting in to bed with the tories”. The question now becomes rather obvious does it not? are the snp now “getting in to bed with the tories” when they join them in the EU referendum?. 

I should not really need to ask this question but I don’t think there is an snp member with the honesty or the courage to ask it for me. Any takers?.  

Sunday, May 17, 2015

URGE YOUR MP TO MAKE 2015-2020 THE PARLIAMENT OF CHANGE FOR PALESTINE.


16 May 2015
The next five years will see a number of important anniversaries for Palestine: The 100 year anniversary of the 1917 Balfour Declaration; 50 years since the start of the Israeli occupation in 1967; and the 70th anniversary of the Nakba. With a new government in place in the UK, and growing support for the recognition of the Palestinian State, we have the opportunity to make 2015 – 2020 the Parliament of change for the UK’s dealings with Israel and Palestine.
You can help by emailing or writing to your MP and asking them to ensure that they ensure that the health and dignity of Palestinians, a recognition of Palestinian statehood, and a just settlement for Palestinian refugees is put at the heart of British foreign policy in relations with Israel and Palestine for the coming Parliament.

Contact your MP
You can find your MP's contact details here, and a suggested text for you to amend is below. Please do let us know if you get any responses - info@map-uk.org.
Dear [MP NAME]
 I am a constituent of yours living at [YOUR ADDRESS]. I would like to [welcome you/welcome you back] to your role as MP for [YOUR CONSTITUENCY].
The UK election result, coming just days after confirmation of the new ruling right-wing coalition in Israel, highlighted the important role of the UK in its relations with Israel. Last March, in an effort to capitalise on divisions and insecurities within Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed a Palestinian state is “no longer relevant” and re-stated his belief that "anyone who moves to establish a Palestinian state and evacuate territory gives territory away to radical Islamist attacks against Israel." These statements are in direct contravention of the only internationally recognised path to peace.
It is undeniable at this time that the two-state solution, and the peace process as a result, is under threat. Spiralling conflict in the region and the ongoing occupation of Palestine is increasing the pressure on the delivery of healthcare in Palestine, as well as for Palestinians living as refugees, and is putting both Palestinians and Israelis in an increasingly insecure situation. UK recognition of the State of Palestine is an essential first step towards bringing the UK in line with the majority of states around the world, enabling discussions to take place on an equal footing, reducing tensions and pushing for constructive, lasting peace talks.
Last year 274 MPs gave a clear statement of support for UK recognition of the state of Palestine by supporting a motion in Parliament to urge the government to “recognise the state of Palestine alongside the state of Israel” as part of a “contribution to securing a negotiated two-state solution.” This continuing trend before the election among Prospective Parliamentary Candidates and the inclusion of pledges in all party manifestos on this issue, makes clear that recognition of the State of Palestine must be one of the first priorities for the next government.
It is essential for the UK, as a key power in Europe and therefore with substantial influence in Quartet discussions, to once and for all recognise the State of Palestine in order to prevent a backward slide away from peace.
In addition to the urgency of UK recognition of the State of Palestine, at the end of the last Parliament, 101 MPs signed EDM 827 calling for Parliamentary access into Gaza as a requirement for accountable UK aid spending and informed debate in Parliament. The 2014 Gaza War greatly exacerbated the humanitarian situation in Gaza and the recovery has simply not happened. Gaza relies on British and international aid agencies for food, water and housing needs and the most recent figures show that more than 100,000 people are still internally displaced and not a single home has been rebuilt.
I urge you as my representative in Parliament to make the health and dignity of Palestinians one of your priorities for this Parliament and to visit Palestine and learn more about this issue through the Britain-Palestine All Party Parliamentary Group.
Your sincerely,

[YOUR NAME]

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

INFORMATION ON THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LABOUR's JIM SHERIDAN AND HIS SNP OPPONENT.

Labour candidate for Paisley North Jim Sheridan is an ex trade Union shop steward in the shipyards.

SNP candidate Gavin Newlands is a MANAGER with McDonalds the famous Fast food exploiters of workers.

The working class people of Paisley North must do the right thing and vote for Jim Sheridan.  

The GMB Union in Scotland carried out an analysis of the occupational background of SNP candidates for the general election and the party’s MSPs and MEPs, only to find over 90 per cent came from the top three groupings — manager, director and senior official, professional and associate professional and technical.

GMB officer and blacklisted construction worker Mick Dooley asked: “Who will represent Scotland’s workers if over 90 per cent of their elected members were to be drawn from the top three occupational groups?
“Not a single person is from the shop floor. How doesIT HELPhttp://cdncache-a.akamaihd.net/items/it/img/arrow-10x10.png to replace a former shop floor worker and union representative like Jim Sheridan with a senior exec from McDonald’s?”

“This examination of candidates shows they (the SNP) overwhelmingly represent the better off.”


VOTE LABOUR. 

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

"WE WILL NOT STOP FIGHTING FOR SCOTLAND AND SOCIAL JUSTICE" GORDON BROWN - MAY 5TH 2015.

We Will Not Stop Fighting for Scotland and Social Justice - Gordon Brown
We must stand up for the 71,000 Scots on food banks. The 80,000 Scots on zero-hours contracts. The 180,000 Scots on waiting lists who need the most basic of necessities, a decent home. We must give a voice to 200,000 children living in poverty, to the millions of Scots whose living standards are falling and whose NHS is suffering from neglect.

While the SNP talk only about deals, coalitions, pacts, tie-ins, hung parliaments and backroom negotiations, we will speak for the Scottish people, poverty, injustice, inequality, deprivation, the jewel in the crown of our welfare state our health service and a better future for the young people of our country. It is only a Labour Government that can: prevent food bank poverty; The Bedroom Tax; payday lenders. zero-hour contracts; NHS neglect, Tory austerity and the miseries they impose. The only Government that can deliver this change is a Labour Government. Even the SNP admit that a Labour Government is the best chance of change.  
We promise 1,000 more nurses, 500 more doctors, a youth employment guarantee. Undeliverable under a Tory Government, even with 59 SNP MPs. I know my fellow Scots are, like me, patriotic and  desperate for change. We want change today so we can live in a more socially just community

And I know too that the change that my fellow Scots and I are demanding is the greatest change of all - social justice - and that we are impatient and cannot wait for it: we want change today so we can live in a more socially just community as soon as tomorrow.  We promise a commitment to the sharing of resources across these islands – from each according to his capacity, to each according to his need, and our commitment to the principles of cooperation and solidarity that underlie this sharing is at the heart of everything we do. And while they talk about social justice, the SNP can never bring themselves to accept the sharing that is the means to secure social justice,

We believe in sharing across the whole of the country. only Labour led the way to the creation of the NHS, giving rights to free and universal care to all who are in need irrespective of nationality or ability to pay – a NHS that today for the very same reason is safe only in Labour’s hands. As is the UK-wide welfare state, Scottish Labour led the way to a minimum wage across the whole of the UK. These are the reasons why there can be no deal, no tie-in, no arrangement and no compromise with an SNP. The nationalist’s advance the cause of a separate state, while Labour advance the cause of social justice. Their aim is a second divisive referendum, our aim is a fair economy.

It cannot be right to argue that the easiest way to get Labour into government is to vote against the. The snp say that they want a Labour Government but refuse to advise Tories in England to vote Labour that is simply dishonest. The SNP the English to vote Liberal Democrat in 2010, and when they actually did use their bloc vote in Westminster they did not use it to save a labour Government to destroy a labour Government in 1979. The SNP prefer misery under the Tories to pursue their obsession of separation the one time they used their bloc vote in Westminster to effect change was not to save but to destroy a Labour Government in 1979. We know that the SNP prefer people dissatisfied under a Conservative Government than people satisfied under a Labour Government.
It aint rocket science, the more Labour MPs we have the more we have a chance of being in government.

We were born against the odds. We grew against the odds. M We created the NHS against the odds. We created the welfare state against the odds. We created the right to work against the odds. We delivered a minimum wage against the odds. We have spent our whole lives fighting for people whose lives are lived against the odds. And we will fight, fight and fight whatever the odds.
And I say to those who feel the pain of others and who believe in something bigger than ourselves: we know that when the strong help the weak it makes us all stronger. I say there are millions like you who cannot be truly happy when others are sad, who cannot be at ease when millions are ill at ease, who cannot feel fully secure with so many insecure, and who cannot be comfortable when so many are without comfort.
And so I give you my view. The independence people really want is independence from poverty. The liberation people really want is liberation from deprivation and unemployment. And the freedom people really want is freedom from all forms of injustice and inequality.


The starting point is on Thursday: voting Labour, electing Labour MPs and securing a Labour Government. Don’t be taken in, the SNP want the Tories to win, don’t let them. 

Monday, May 04, 2015

"facts are chiels that winna ding" An SNP truth teller, what next.

Another SNP parliamentary candidate joins our very own Natalie McGarry in being honest with the Scottish electorate - SNP plans mean MORE austerity, not less.

Friday, May 01, 2015

CLEAR CUT REASONS FOR VOTING LABOUR.


Neil Findlay
Labour MSP.

So for those who lazily suggest or deliberately tell lies and say there is no difference between Labour and the Tories and that the SNP are progressive then here are just a few of the very positive reasons for voting Labour:-
Labour will introduce a 50p tax rate on the rich – the Tories want to cut taxes for the rich
Labour will tax the bonuses of bankers to help young people back to work – the Tories won’t, the SNP can’t
Labour will introduce a mansion tax to pay for more nurses – the Tories and the SNP won’t
Labour will guarantee a paid job or training for all young people out of work for a year and older people out of work for two years – The Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will have a £1600 future fund for every young person not in an MA at College of University – The Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will guarantee the Barnett Formula – the Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will increase bursaries by £1000 for the poorest students – The Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will abolish employment tribunal fees – The Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will ban exploitative zero hours contracts – the Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will invest £175 million in Scotland to end the need for foodbanks – the Tories and the SNP won’t 
Labour will cap energy bills and private landlords ripping off tenants – The Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will extend the Living wage through public procurement – the Tories won’t the SNP have failed
Labour will have an inquiry into Blacklisting of workers – The Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will hold a review of the convictions of miners arrested in Scotland during the strike – The Tories and SNP won’t 
Labour will introduce free bus travel for apprentices – the Tories and SNP won’t.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

SNP Is Not As Left As It Seems




APR
2015
Thursday 30TH
posted by Morning Star in Editorial
Over the last two years the SNP's  rhetoric has shifted sharply left to win Labour heartlands, often in areas where Labour councils have, without protest, imposed the cuts handed on by the SNP government in Holyrood.
But there is also a contradiction.
Labour's policies today are to the left of the SNP's.
In terms of spending the Institute for Fiscal Studies has found the SNP programme require more cuts than Labour's.
Some of the SNP's signature left policies - such as restoring the 50 per cent tax rate on incomes above £150,000 and supporting all-women shortlists - are policies Labour has been signed up to for years. 
Labour is ahead of the SNP in terms of redistribution - lacking the nationalists' obsession with corporation tax cuts - and on commitments on workers' rights and the living wage.
Even on public-sector ownership, Labour's step in calling for a public-sector operator for rail transport is preferable to the SNP's eagerness to hand Scottish franchises to private monopolies.
The SNP  and other pro-independence forces to its left have actually concentrated their fire on left wing Labour MPs such as Katy Clark, Ian Davidson, Jim Sheridan - friends of our paper, our movement and our class.
The SNP has never claimed to be a class party. It is national in its aspirations. It happily deals with big business and the super-rich, from Brian Souter to Rupert Murdoch.
If it eliminates Labour north of the border it will only increase the likelihood of a Conservative government after next week.

This might well boost support for Scottish Independence. It would also spell disaster for working people in Scotland as well as England and Wales.

Friday, April 24, 2015

DOES ANYONE GENUINELY STILL BELIEVE THE SNP RHETORIC?.

Over recent days the lies of the snp have been catching up with them, from saying they will stop austerity they are now saying austerity cannot be avoided. This is not however what they say when canvassing where they are still claiming that the snp will end austerity, this is a lie. The snp’s raison d’ĂȘtre is independence yet they are saying “this election is not about independence” are they confused or again lying?. Sturgeon states that she wants to support a Labour Government yet no one can find a single snp member or activist who can bring themselves to say they would support Labour, this is lies on an industrial scale. 

The snp activists want a Tory victory which will allow them to blame England for Scotland’s woes under the tories.  A fortnight ago the snp were labelling Labour as red tories and now they want to support our ‘progressive policies’ they want Ed Milliband as Prime Minister but are telling everyone not to vote Labour! They are treating people with contempt --- yet again.   

Meanwhile the low life fascist wing of the snp continue to use social media to abuse, bully and intimidate people who speak out against the snp. These tartanshirts also continue to claim that the referendum was a fix by the state despite their own party leadership accepting the result; these people are dangerous and sinister. The snp’s immediate response to it’s influx of new members was to immediately shackle them and prevent them from expressing an opinion by passing a vote at their recent conference which banned all members from expressing any dissent about snp policy, someone in the snp hierarchy has been boning up on German Nazi politics circa 1930’s.  

Contradictions (lies) abound such as “We want more millionaires, and any notion that an independent Scotland would be left-wing is delusional nonsense,” Jim Mather, the SNP’s Enterprise Minister in the 2007-11 SNP government. “we Scots. didn’t mind the economic side (of Thatcher) so much, but we didn’t like the social side at all.” Alex salmond. “ we need less bank regulation” Alex salmond just before the banking crash.
They (the snp) promised that the average price of a barrel of oil would remain at $113 until 2020. And within months it had slumped to less than $50. the SNP has increased private health spending by 47% since 2011 and is now running at £100 millions a year. 4,500 jobs in the NHS in Scotland have been cut, 2,000 of them nurses. The main architect of these NHS cuts? Nicola Sturgeon.
Council jobs and services have been decimated to allow the snp to buy tory votes by giving the rich tax breaks in the form of a local income tax freeze, corruption by another name.

Nationalism wants you to vote based on where you were born no matter the outcome, in this way they will be able to claim with patriotic fervour ‘well it’s rubbish but at least it’s good old Scottish rubbish”. Labour wants you to vote based on what is best for your class no matter where you were born.  

Every seat won by the snp will be cheered to the echo by the tories, be in no doubt about that. If the Labour party were to form a minority government they would be vulnerable to the single issue politics of the snp, politics which have no concern whatsoever to working class aspirations. DON’T LET THAT HAPPEN. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

VOTE FOR JIM SHERIDAN LABOUR PAISLEY AND RENFREWSHIRE NORTH AND DOUGLAS ALEXANDER LABOUR PAISLEY AND RENFREWSHIRE SOUTH.

LABOUR'S JIM SHERIDAN AND DOUGLAS ALEXANDER Are two of the most experienced politicians at Westminster, both have hard won reputations for being honest, diligent and local candidates who live in and know their constituencies. When you cast your vote for these two Labour politicians you can be sure that you are voting for two candidates who never cease fighting for their communities. Both embody the finest traditions of the Labour Party and the Trade Union Movement, you can rest assured that they will both fight to protect the gains which have been won by the Labour movement through the years and also fight tooth and nail to protect the people against the greed and selfishness of the Tories and the crude politics of hatred which the SNP are so associated with. Voting for Jim and Douglas means we will continue to have two Labour stalwarts with the dedication and know how to rebuild and repair the damage done by the Tories over the last 5 years.       

April 13Th. 20 15. Coordinated orchestrated attacks already coming in from the snp/separatist/cybernats as a result of the issuing of The Labour Manifesto today which you can find by searching this address. 

http://www.labour.org.uk/manifesto

The outbursts from this nationalist rabble are predictably abusive and full of squalid incoherent hatred . The thing which has created this "ferrets in a sack" reaction is the fact that the Manifesto and the changes it proposes are carefully costed and the snp by contrast are proposing more borrowing without saying how much and how they will pay back the money borrowed. When it comes to finances and economics this is looking like a rerun of the referendum. In fiscal matters they are being shown again to be utterly incompetent. Labour are showing a lead over the Tories UK wide, something that the snp have been telling us could not happen and that emphasises not only how untrustworthy they are but also their inept performance when it comes to financial affairs. The situation could hardly be graver nor the choice starker. If you want rid of the Tories the only way to do that is to vote Labour on General Election Day, every vote for the snp boosts the chances of Cameron and the Tories getting another 5 years.

                                   DON’T LET IT HAPPEN.             

Sunday, April 05, 2015

THE SNP ARE FINDING OUT THAT THERE IS NO PLACE TO HIDE.

I have just listened to Nicola Sturgeon on TV, full of synthetic rage and refusing to comment on a question about the now famous leaked email where she declared her preference for a Tory government. She refused to answer because the questioner was quoting a high ranking snp official whom he would not name, who said that “a tory Government would be better for the snp”. News stories where the source is not disclosed are commonplace and no one exploits them more than the snp, this made her position on this look feeble and disingenuous. What people should mull over in all of this is what Nicola Sturgeon actually wants, I would suggest that her one and only wish is separation, does anyone disagree with me?.
Her position for that reason is apolitical and always has been, using plain language, she will do and say anything to achieve success for the “cause” this is why the snp were able to bring Thatcher to power all those years ago by bringing down the Labour Government, they and she can and will continue to justify anything by telling themselves that it is the “cause” that matters, a position which has been taken by despots and dictators throughout history. It follows therefore that she and they are neither pro or anti Labour, neither pro or anti Tory, she is pro separation. Would Sturgeon and the snp support a Tory Government if they thought that it would benefit separation, help the “cause”?, you better believe they would, they would support anyone.
The consensus among the news agencies and the political commentators backed up with polls and computer data was that no significant gains were made by any party following the leader’s debate, despite the snp attempts to declare Nicola Sturgeon the winner. The usual coordinated cybernat campaign to ‘big her up’ ran in to the ground because the rest of the UK was involved and they still stubbornly refuse to treat her and the snp as a ‘premier league team’. Her reputation was exposed as fragile when she tried to wrap herself in the cloak of opposition to privatisation of of the NHS, this was the big league though, and they remembered her tenure as Scottish Health Minister when she spent millions on private health spending. Her oft repeated sabre rattling about austerity as well was exposed and continues to be exposed as a deception through their  past absurd claims about oil prices being the backbone of an independent Scottish economy. One does not need to be a Nobel Economic Laureate to work out that reliance on oil and it’s price falling from the snp forecast of $130 a barrel to $50 a barrel would have caused an unprecedented economic collapse, with no England to blame for it either, the stuff that violent government coups are made of and our Polish, Asian and other minority communities would have felt the brunt of it. The nationalists “land of milk and honey” Norway has had to devalue the Krone by 35% because of the oil price crash. The cuts which would result in such a scenario would be far in excess of any austerity cuts proposed by a Labour government.


Sturgeon and her supporters seem to think that declaring a liking for children and a dislike for nuclear weapons will suffice as far as gathering votes is concerned. My guess is they are going to find that it is more complicated than that, they must be hoping that no one will bring up the actual attitude in Scotland to Trident which is not what they are telling people, the population I’m sure will see the obviously bogus position of making anti nuclear weapons a major plank of your policy while at the same declaring your support for NATO this is not only contradictory, it is insulting the intelligence of the Scottish people. Today’s hysterical snp reaction to Sturgeon’s comments display a party which is in a bit of a funk and really panicky. It’s getting interesting.        

Friday, April 03, 2015

MORE TORY LIES EXPOSED


Saturday, March 28, 2015

ORDER, ORDER - BERCOW 1 THE NASTY PARTY 0

The highlight of my week was the failure of the squalid Tory plot to get rid of The House of Commons Speaker John Bercow. This ‘Speaker’ is a man who has been on a long journey from rabid right wing hidebound Tory of the Tebbit/Thatcher school to the embodiment of what was once commonly referred to as ‘One Nation Tories’. People like Ian McLeod, Harold MacMIllan and RAB Butler all from before the brutal ‘nasty party’ of the Thatcher era and the privileged braying donkeys we know today as the wretched chinless Bullingdon Boys, most of whom need to use both hands to find their own a***s but, they are well bred and rich and born to be leaders.     

The fact that this last day of this parliament coincided with the last day of one of the most unpleasant: most arrogant Tory MP’S of my political life was a bonus and the fact that that revolting malevolent character was the would be assassin of the speaker made the enjoyment more satisfying, I refer of course to William Haque about whom it was often said “what, that slimy b*****d”. No one better embodied ‘the nasty party than Hague, he is rumoured to have a perfectly constructed glass eye, only detectable by looking closely and noting that one of his eyes shows humanity and compassion, that is the glass one, The House of Commons seems a fresher place already.

The post of speaker is a strange one it has the effect of making the most partisan of politicians act fairly before a watching world. This was regarded as a minus for a Tory Speaker by his party and so it was with Bercow, he was detested by many Tories because he refused to show his own party favour and liked by all others for that very quality. Bercow is more of a Disraeli Tory, while Hague, Cameron, Osborne etc. are more in the camp of Thatcher and Churchill, for those who are not political anoraks like me that is a compliment to Bercow, A Tory Speaker of the house, I never thought I would ever say something like that but there you are I’ve said it.   

Saturday, March 21, 2015

SALMOND'S REFERENDUM DIARIES DEBUNKED BY BRIAN WILSON.

21:31Friday 20 March 2015
I WILL not be giving Mr Murdoch his £12.99 in order to share in the musings of Alex Salmond. Sufficient to rely on the extracts which can be obtained for nothing and all seem to be of the scapegoating variety. Always someone else’s fault. Whose fault is it, I wonder, that Mr Salmond is now confirmed as having attempted the biggest deception in modern political history by arguing a case for Scottish independence that was based on entirely bogus claims about future North Sea oil revenues? Fortunately, he failed.
The UK government will receive less than £1 billion a year in oil revenues for at least the next five years. This compares to the Scottish Government’s insistence that the revenues in 2016-17 alone would amount to between £6.8 – 7.9 billion. The Office for Budget Responsibility now estimates £600 million for that year – surely a record-breaking miscalculation by the Scottish Government of over 90 per cent. Nicola Sturgeon blithely states that “everyone’s projections about oil were wrong” as if that magically exonerates the deception to which she was a leading subscriber. But, anyway, her memory is highly selective. The scale of the fall may be even greater than anticipated but it was the downward trend which the Nationalists stood alone in denying and were prepared to denigrate anyone who dared contradict them. Incidentally, I see that Ms Sturgeon’s word of the week is “gleeful”. Anyone who points out the dishonesty of what she and her colleagues told the Scottish people, or the calamitous implications if they had succeeded, is not doing so because lies should be punished and realities exposed. They are doing so because they are “gleeful”, whatever that may mean in the language of the Holyrood kindergarten.
As far back as March 2013, the Office of Budget Responsibility was forecasting a drop in the oil price to “below $100 a barrel in future years”. Salmond dismissed this as “stuff and nonsense” and accused the civil servants responsible of “political manipulation”. That set the tone for two years of abusing the integrity and motives of anyone who dared contradict him. And what about the debased Scottish civil service? The White Paper insisted that a “cautious” figure to base Scotland’s economic future on was $113 a barrel. As Dr Azeem Ibrahim wrote in a paper for The Scotland Institute: “If any of my PhD students had produced an economic argument this poor, I would have failed them immediately”. But someone, still hiding in St Andrew’s House, did write it, probably under duress. Will Salmond’s book shed light on that murky process?
I accept that there are many in Scotland who do not give a toss about the lies, deceptions or dire economic and social consequences that would have followed, even by now, if the Nationalists had succeeded. For them, as for Salmond, the end justifies the means and if the means involve the flagrant fabrication of numbers to make the case stack up, then so be it. But when history takes a calmer look at last year’s referendum, it is important that the narrative is not written by the loser, for it is he who should be called to account. The parable of the oil revenues should not be forgotten. Neither should the abuse hurled at dissenting voices. The SNP’s projections for Scotland’s jobs, schools and hospitals were based on an oil price of $113 a barrel. That is inescapable.
If Salmond and Sturgeon had prevailed, Scotland would be facing austerity on a scale unimaginable to anyone other than, perhaps, the Greeks. Jobs would be flowing out of Scotland in their tens of thousands as the implications of the folly became apparent. The young would be leaving on the same scale they fled Ireland after the banking crash from which we in Scotland were protected. And it would be too late to do anything about it.
As Dr Ibrahim wrote in his paper: “With an annual borrowing requirement of £20 billion-plus, there would have been simply no way to get finance on the international markets at sensible rates. Throw in the uncertainty over the currency and EU membership and it would have been financial Armageddon”. That is the bullet we dodged and no re-writing of history should portray it as anything other than an extremely sensible decision.
Yet this is more than a lesson for the benefit of history. The “full fiscal autonomy” which Salmond and Sturgeon now demand would exchange the Barnett Formula for North Sea oil revenues. That is the platform on which they say they will contest the General Election – not because even they could conceivably want that outcome in current circumstances, but as the subsequent excuse for more posturing and blame-shifting to absolutely no useful effect.
If almost half of Scotland wants that kind of politics, then it is what they will get. Unfortunately, the rest of us will have to suffer it too, but that’s democracy. I have no doubt the outcome the SNP are desperate to facilitate is the return of another Tory government which they can then portray as pantomime villains for whom Scotland did not vote. And so it goes on – all about process and manoeuvring without an inch of progress in terms of equality, fairness and social justice.There was not much to cheer or boo about in this week’s budget. In fact, it contained a few good things and, as Labour have rightly said, nothing worth reversing. But a pre-election budget is not a reflection of the past five years or the next five years. The General Election offers a broad choice in the kind of society we want to live in. If Scotland helps to facilitate the return of the Tories as a price worth paying for giving Labour a kicking, then it must do so with its collective eyes open.

If it achieves that outcome by supporting the same people who assured them six months ago that their jobs, NHS and children’s future would be secure on the basis of an oil price of $113 a barrel, then we really are in a strange place. Yesterday, the price stood at $55. BRIAN WILSON.