The Times They Are A Changing

The Times They Are A-Changin’

As summer turns to autumn dear readers our thoughts turn to our online conference starting on Friday. Having read the agenda, I’m filled with optimism and excitement for this forward looking agenda leading us to a greener, fairer and more equal Scotland for all of us who live here.

Meanwhile in little Englandshire it’s all gone horribly Pete Tong.

Where to start? Now that’s an easy one. As catastrophe piles on catastrophe things aren’t looking good for the Non PM and his shady cabal of ministers. Apparently there’s to be a cabinet reshuffle. Good luck with that. From the fake Brexit soundbites where we held all the cards! Yes that was said on numerous occasions. We now see that vis a vis Brexit all the dis-United Kingdom is left holding in its shrivelled unionist claw is a busted flush.

There’s an old saying that you can put lipstick on a pig but it will still remain a porcine. A Tory cabinet however much it is reshuffled will still remain a brigade of serial incompetents, carefully selected as camouflage for the incompetence of a PM who has time and time again been proven to be a serial teller of untruths, work-shy and lackadaisical in every aspect of his attempted governance of the dis-United Kingdom.

The most recent in no particular order to join the Ministry Of Failures comprise Matt (crocodile tears) Hancock. Of all his errors, who knew that it would be a dangerous liaison that caused his downfall. Of course the non PM initially refused to sack him, but he was gone in the twinkling of a dastardly Dom eye only to be replace by Sajid (let’s ignore coronavirus safety measures ) Javid. If only the UK had a health policy and a leader that prioritised health rather than getting the drones back into the office to protect the rental income of their cronies. For the Tories it’s undoubtedly wealth before health. Scenes from the Tory Benches during the Afghanistan debate were conclusive proof that these self serving individuals have not a shred of common decency or concern for their fellow citizens. How long will it be before we have a super spreader outbreak. Pity the poor parliamentary staff who have to work in this environment.

Moving on we now arrive at Dominic (the sea was closed) Rabb. Not quite fiddling while Rome burned, but at a time when Afghanistan was descending into crisis and political turmoil where did we find this hard working Minister? And more importantly as the vital £20 uplift of Universal Credit is set to be scrapped plunging folks into poverty, how could he even conceive it was a good idea to holiday at a cost of thousands per night. There is much chattering as to who will replace him. From Liz (the cheese ) Truss whose strong point isn’t geography or trade for that matter to the very handy Glove puppet Gove who knows? Michael (disco diva) Gove is not currently failing in his brief assuming he ever had one but he was MIA for some time only to pop up unexpectedly at a rave night in an Aberdeen nightclub. In my youth I’ve attended many a nightclub but never in all my days did I ever behold such an unedifying spectacle.

All in all this small sample sounds more like characters in a Tarantino movie. Whilst the various Mr Men in Reservoir Dogs were a series of unsavoury and dangerous characters, luckily they were only a work of fiction. Sadly the cabal of incompetents at the heart of government are very real. We must ask ourselves how long can these serial incompetents continue to damage the fabric of society for their own nefarious ends.

Meanwhile things are no better in Scotland when it comes to the three Unionist amigo parties.

The SNP and Green Party have aligned to provide stable and forward looking government. To hear the three Branch office leaders talk you would think that this was a bad thing. The howls of outrage from the Unionists gladden my heart. Everything they stand for belongs in the past and they cannot conceive of Scotland as an Independent and successful country.

They long for a bygone age when Britannia terrorised the waves attacked weaker countries and subjected indigenous peoples to cruel and inhuman policies. The mainly pale stale and male Unionists are middle aged to elderly men who stubbornly refuse to move with the times. As my favourite musician so aptly put it “Your old road is rapidly ageing please get out of the new one if you can’t lend your hand for the times they are a-changin'”.

And indeed the times are changing and in Scotland for the better. On 18 September it will be seven long years since our first referendum when lies and fear prevented us achieving our status as an independent small country. In the ensuing years no one could have foreseen the trials and tribulations that our country has endured.Some like Brexit are not of our making. The UK government had no plan for this and like Dross at Holyrood last week, the Brexit chickens are well and truly coming home to roost. From shortages of food, medicines and staff for many vital sectors the list is endless. I eagerly await the time when Dross stands and provides just one benefit of Brexit benefit for Scotland. The vast majority of our citizens did not vote for this shambles. The global pandemic which had been foreseen for many years was not prepared for by governments worldwide. However once it was evident what was happening many countries took adequate measures to safeguard their citizens. Meanwhile in bad old Tory run Blighty it was contracts for cronies and a blatant disregard for the safety of the people.

As the seasons turn and time progresses we must remain optimistic that our futures will be brighter.

Hard rains already fell and soon it will sweep the chains of Unionism from our land. Together as individuals and collectively as a nation we have the ability to forge our own future.

The SNP and Green alliance will lead the charge and I’m sure that all progressive minded individuals will happily follow in their wake.

Liz Lowrey

The Times They Are A-Changin’, Bob Dylan

Independence is Normal

Independence is Normal

Liz LowreyIn life we seldom regret the opportunities we take but most would agree that it’s the opportunities we never took that cause heartfelt regret. t must indeed be a fortunate individual who goes through life safe in the knowledge that every decision made is the right one.

As a young law student at Dundee University in the 1970s I applied for and was accepted to be a trainee journalist by a well know Dundee media group.

I had started my third year of the LLB and was the first in my family to go to university and although not enjoying the law course, I never did seize that opportunity to train to be a journalist. Why? I have often asked myself. Fear of the unknown, parental disapproval, lack of confidence in my own abilities. Whatever the reason I know to this day that if I had the same chance again I would seize the opportunity in a heartbeat.

Many of these reasons can also apply to those of our fellow Scots who chose to vote No to Independence in 2014. I wish 40 years later that I had been braver back in the day and trained to be a journalist, but my decision only affected me. The future I chose was of my own making and my decision did not have a detrimental effect on my fellow citizens. I am pleased to say that in 2014 I had no such hesitation when casting my YES vote for Independence.

Over the ensuing years since that day in 2014 when for a few short hours the future looked so appealing we have all been forced to live with the consequences of the No vote.

So many things were presented by the No side as persuasive arguments as to why the Union was better for us in Scotland. A main factor was that Scotland would be removed from the EU! Well that has come to pass but not in the way that Better Together predicted.

As for the ridiculousness of Boris Johnstone as PM, well that would never happen or so they said. Additionally when privatisation of the NHS was discussed again we were told that this was scaremongering. Well over the past years the chickens of Better Together have come home to roost and not in a good way. We have contracts for friends, cronyism and goodness knows what else. Every day brings a new scandal and a lot of folks have simply accepted this corruption.

Scotland has a Government that endeavours to be transparent and accountable in what it does. While no Government can be perfect I would like to live in a country where decisions that effect me and my family are made by my Government who I sincerely believe have the interest of Scotland and our people at the core.

The Corona Virus crisis sharply brought into contrast the two governments of the U.K. and Scotland.

We had dither delay and mixed messages from the U.K.. Here in Scotland we received daily updates and sound information from our hardworking First Minister. How different would have been our outcomes if we had been an independent country with the ability to control our own borders and manage our own financial affairs.Ironically the whole premise of Brexit was about taking back control but when push came to shove nothing was controlled including the arrival of the Delta virus. Yet another catastrophic error for which no one in the U.K. government will be held accountable.I want to live in an independent country where my government is accountable to our people. A country where decisions made are based on health and well being and not on securing dodgy deals in back rooms.

With hindsight which is indeed a wonderful thing we now know many no voters in 2014 wish that they had been braver and taken a leap of faith. Second time around I’m certain that there are still many of my fellow Scots who are not quite ready to commit to supporting the cause of Independence. The reasons for this in my opinion range from the obvious to the ridiculous How many people still believe the lies that were spouted by Better Together . It is up to each and everyone of us to challenge, support and convince undecideds that the only way for our country to survive in a fit state for future generations is by securing our Independence. With regard to the current climate emergency we often hear that our lives depend on taking action and I would go as far to say that the same applies to Independence.

My first suggestion for facilitating this is to ensure that all citizens have access to concrete facts and information regarding what being an independent country entails.There are numerous excellent sources of information available and I would certainly recommend the material from Believe in Scotland as an excellent starting point for undecided voters. A large percentage of people still get their primary news and information from MSM and the BBC. These are institutions of the U.K. and it is not in their interests to promote independence. Rather they will do everything in their power to maintain the status quo.

From a border with England, to what currency we in an independent Scotland will use, to scare stories terrifying our pensioners that they will be left penniless in an independent Scotland the No side will stop at nothing to maintain their grasp of our country.

The fact that we in Scotland want to be independent does not mean we will be arguing with our in-laws in England . England is and always will be our nearest neighbour. It is in both countries interest to maintain good and mutually beneficial relationships . However we as individuals mostly maintain cordial relationships with our next door neighbours but we don’t allow them to micro manage every aspect of our lives . We don’t have them arranging our finances or taking out a mortgage on our behalf. This is because with our neighbours we are equal beings and not being coerced by a larger dominant entity that is hostile to our needs .

There is so much that can be done to counteract these arguments and the primary thing that is required is education.

Independence is normal and the status of most other small similar sized counties. There has to date not been a single case of a country that gained independence returning to the larger country from which it broke free.

It’s time that the people of Scotland broke free from the chains of Unionism.

The Union is a toxic entity and serves no purpose for Scotland and our people.

In Scotland we have a government that works hard every day to achieve a fair and equal society where all people are valued regardless of their wealth. We do not live in a money orientated rogue state but rather a country where wealth is measured not solely in monetary terms but in the wellbeing of all our people. We only need to look to our Scandinavian neighbours to see how this benefits us all as individuals and society as a whole. The Scandinavian countries are some of the happiest and healthiest in the world. Like the Nordic lands we in Scotland cannot choose our weather but we certainly have the ability to choose how we are governed.When we have the chance to decide our countries future I’m optimistic that second time round we will make the correct choice for the benefit of all.

Scotland has an enormous supply of natural resources water, wind and even oil and gas. Our natural resources far exceed the needs of our population. These are valuable commodities which we should be managing for our benefit and not to fill the coffers of the U.K. and benefit the City of London. Our black gold was squandered away by the U.K.and all we have left to show for this are obsolete oil rigs. We pay for so many things as part of the U.K. that have no tangible benefit to our country. A few examples like HS2, Trident and the outdated and irrelevant House of Lords can’t be ignored.We currently have no power over the weapons of mass destruction in our midst. These are an abomination and have no place in a civilised world and certainly no place in Scotland.

Scotland has a wealth of produce that is exported throughout the world. Prior to Brexit we exported easily to 27 other counties who were our closest neighbours. Now all this is ruined by the U.K. Tory Brexit. Scotland needs people to come and make their homes here. All are welcome and desperately needed to keep our country thriving. Our young folks had the ability to study, work and live freely in Europe and again all this has ended not by our choosing but at the dictate of the Dictator in Downing Street .

I want my adult children and grandchildren to grow up in an open and progressive country not one controlled by a dangerous and xenophobic U.K. government.

The U.K. is an island and Scotland will always remain part of it by geography at least. However we should be able to forge our own path not have our decisions and life choices forced on us by an uncaring Tory government that remains omnipresent in spite of the fact that we in Scotland have not voted Tory for most of my lifetime.
 

Liz Lowrey

I’m alright (Union)Jack

Covid MaskI’m not a scientist dear readers or a medical expert but I can see a looming disaster as easily as the next person. The definition of insanity attributed to Albert Einstein is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.This seems to be a prerequisite for being a Tory Party leader. How I long for the Halcyon daze of the Maybot May. Whilst being a figure of ridicule, no matter how ridiculous her actions seemed at the time, I believe she was basically a misguided individual who bore no malice to her fellow human beings. She certainly did not advocate policies designed to cause maximum harm to the most vulnerable in society.

This week I watched in horror as the giant Clown of Downing Street announced to the country (England) that all corona virus restrictions would cease in the near future. As if by magic a deadly disease that has blighted the world for eighteen months will magically vanish due to English exceptionalism. Yes that’s right folks it’s now in our own hands. The UK government in effect has abdicated all responsibility. I could not believe my ears. Although the vaccine rollout has without doubt been a great success there are still many amongst the young who are not fully protected.

Many of these young folks work in areas where contact with the public is commonplace and also many have to use public transport. Additionally although very effective the vaccine is not a guarantee for us that have been doubled jabbed that we won’t get infected. Personally I will continue to wear a mask and take all reasonable precautions to protect myself and my fellow citizens for the foreseeable future.

It will be interesting to see if the Clown PM has a driver wearing a mask after the alleged “Freedom Day” Watch this space but somehow I don’t see it. Having got rid of Matt (the scapegoat) Hancock we now have a Health Secretary in England who is bullish and cavalier with the health and life prospects of the people of England. I fear that he will be a threat to the English NHS and would not be surprised if privatisation accelerates.

I, like most people in the UK and indeed in Scotland, want life to return to normal or as near normal as it can be whilst a deadly pandemic continues to rampage through the world. By removing the legal requirement to end mask wearing in England and also the need for social distancing the Tory non government are repeating and adding to their catalogue of errors that has led to the UK being one of the most badly affected countries in the world.

They were too late to lockdown as the pandemic started in 2020, they promoted the ridiculousness of eat out to catch covid, they were too late to lockdown last autumn and winter and finally having promoted the benefit of controlling our own borders they allowed the Delta variant to enter when all the evidence suggested that this would result in a massive third wave of infection. The cost of a post Brexit trade deal with India will be misery for all who voted for Boris and Brexit!

In my opinion it’s herd immunity by stealth and totally insidious in its nature. What will it take for these people who are supposed to represent their constituents to see that the majority of people even in England do not wish to jeopardise the health of the many for the good of the minority fringe?

Brexit has emboldened a group of people who firmly believe that I’m alright Jack is the way forward.

We see this in the way migrants are vilified for trying to escape a life of danger and poverty in their homeland. We see it in the way the sovereignty of Parliament is under attack. We see it in the desire to curtail the right to peaceful protest. And most acutely for us in Scotland we see the overt threat to our Parliament and our democracy.

I read with great interest the excellent presentation on unconscious bias which has been put out by our Equalities Officer. Unconscious bias is something we are all guilty of. I make no secret that I’ve been biased against Tory ideology for my entire adult life . What started in the 1970s with Thatcher the milk snatcher shaped my beliefs that a society must function for the benefit of all and not for the benefit of those that would walk over their fellow men and women to further their own ends .

The film Titanic amplifies this where the rich rushed to the lifeboats pushing aside women, children and men, fellow humans who had the misfortune to be in carriage class.

Of course this would not have been a problem if there had been a competent captain and adequate lifeboats for all.Can you see the similarity with the present day? The captain of the UK is a fool and the life rafts of our NHS are overburdened already due to years of neglect by subsequent Tory governments.

The financial crisis was not caused by you or me dear readers but by the greed of a small number of individuals who put their own needs and agendas ahead of the rest of us. Time and time again this happens. How long can we accept this? In Scotland we are moving to a focus on a wellbeing economy where wellbeing of us all is more important than the financial interest of a select few.

Some of the most happy countries in the world are our Scandinavian neighbours . It is within our ability to emulate those places but there is one thing holding us back. The spectre of the broken Union still looms large and in spite of the best efforts of our Scottish government it is hard to progress forward when we are trapped on the sinking vessel of the UK.

Unlike the poor carriage class passengers trapped on the Titanic we have the means and ability to reach solid ground safely. We have an excellent captain in the form of our First Minister and I’m certain as Scotland moves toward our independence there will be adequate lifeboats and space for all that wish to join and make their homes here in our lovely country.

by Liz Lowrey

Image by Juraj Varga from Pixabay

The Blue Red and Orange Meanies

The Blue Red and Orange Meanies by Liz Lowrey

Monster Meanie

Well dear readers I’m feeling very happy and hope you are all sharing my joy. After a long, hard but inspiring election campaign the votes have been counted and the result is clear. Our Scottish Parliament is now filled to overflow with independence supporting MSPs. With 64 seats for the SNP and 8 seats for the Scottish Green Party the people of Scotland have spoken and Scotland’s Voice has indeed been heard. The nay sayers, anti SNP bloggers and pop up parties have been consigned to the dustbin of history.Theres an old saying if it ain’t broke don’t fix it and we now know that voters of Scotland in the round agreed with an increased majority supporting the SNP.

South Perthshire and Kinross-shire elected our new MSP Jim Fairlie also with an increased majority on the back of an increased voter turnout. The Blue Meanies in Mid Scotland and Fife were roundly beaten and only managed to sneak in on the list thanks to their campaign of blatantly begging for voters of the red and orange meanies to lend their votes to the Party of Boris Johnson! Whilst in a functioning democracy every individual has the right to cast their vote for what they believe in I seriously wonder how the folks that leant their vote to the Toxic Tories can sleep at night.
As the UK Parliament opened with all the outdated pomp and ceremony the Queen’s speech was notable by what it didn’t cover as much as by what it did.
Trump himself would be proud of the naked attempt at voter suppression. Sledge hammer to crack a nut springs to mind and even the Blue Baroness told it like it is on the Peston programme. Of course she is now free to air her views safe in the knowledge that she has her ermine robe for life thanks to her services to the Tory Twig office in Scotland.
And as for the current leader Dross the strain of leading a party that did NOT win in Scotland has already started to show. His rude aggressive and childlike behaviour is no longer hidden and the people of Scotland are watching. His comments to Pete Wishart show him for what he is a small man with small ideas and a small vocabulary. No doubt he was enraged when the UK Secretary of State for Scotland Union Jack admitted yesterday that the SNP had indeed won the election in Scotland. That Dross has in the past made extremely offensive comments about minority groups is not in doubt. Old school mates have spoken regarding his bullying behaviour in the past and he continues to take a leaf out of his UK Masters’ rule book. No wonder he was deemed a fit and proper person to represent the Party in Scotland. And it’s not just him. The bitterness of his fellow cohorts oozes out unchecked. I was shocked but not surprised when Annie Wells criticised a new young SNP MSP who has achieved a great success in being elected. This type of Tory behaviour is beyond the pale but sadly expected. Starting any new job is a daunting prospect and without adequate bank rolling from rich benefactors most people will struggle and by stating this our young MSP shows understanding of real people and the difficulties they face.
And talking of young MSPs, overnight we see a new MP in Airdrie and Shotts. A great day for Airdrie and Shotts not so much for the Tory lite Labour Party. Strange that the English By Election got wall to wall coverage on BBC but our first ever SNP win in a By Election gets a mere grudging mention.

So returning to the Queen’s Speech a reasonable person might wonder where the oven ready health and social care reform package is. Yet another example of Tory fake promises that will never materialise. There will also be an enquiry into their catastrophic mishandling of the pandemic but again this has been kicked into the long grass. The only thing that this Tory government did right was ensure that we had adequate vaccine supplies. However when the history books are written I doubt this will be what is remembered rather their serial incompetence at every turn.
Yesterday as the new MSPs were sworn into our Parliament a dawn raid occurred in Glasgow. Team UK at its absolute worst showing again the divergence of the countries of the disUnited Kingdom.
People power won the day in Glasgow as fellow citizens supported their neighbours from the clutches of the UK’s vile policies. Scotland is a welcoming country to all who choose to make their home here. Diversity is one of our great strengths. Compare and contrast with the situation elsewhere on These Islands. Local elections in England reaffirm that much of England remains wedded to the Tory party and its despicable ideologies. When will the scales fall from their eyes? The red wall has remained blue and once again I can only state that the electorate receive the government they deserve.
Meanwhile in Wales and Scotland Toryism has been firmly rejected and put back in its box. Like a maniacally jack in the box it remains waiting to spring out when we least expect it.
Scotland’s Parliament has a progressive programme of legislation ready to enact with Covid recovery at its heart. One wonders how many of the Tory Twig office will vote against progressive legislation in our Parliament. How long will the alleged Dross spirit of working together for the recovery of Scotland last. A cynic such as me predicts not long. We will see him in action very soon as he leads his Party in the Scottish Parliament. His Blue Baroness safety blanket is gone and we can expect to see his petulant childish behaviour becoming more apparent as he struggles with his dual mandates of not representing Scotland and our interests in Holyrood or Westminster. Will he go the same way as the unfortunate ex MP for Ochil and South Perthshire. Rejected as an MP, rejected by Downing Street and reduced to writing ridiculous pieces for low quality pro Union media publications. I did have a terrible fear that he would try to sneak back into Scottish politics on the Tory list but luckily that was not to be.
As our new MSPs and Parliament work to rebuild Scotland as an even better country many challenges lie ahead. We can be confident in our First Minister who has worked tirelessly to date and continues to lead the majority SNP MSPs in Holyrood. However great the challenges ahead I have every confidence that the day job will be done.
As for the Blue Red and Orange meanies I’m not expecting much.

Bespoke billboard outside the Almondbank shop had Unionists tittering.

Thanks to Betty Angus, Almond & Earn SNP branch 2nd Officer for the alert and taking the photographs.

National reader creates billboard to help counter ‘Westminster lies’
Link to page, online edition, opens in a separate tab.
“A NATIONAL reader has created a bespoke billboard to display the paper outside his local newsagents in Almondbank near Perth, a move he says has the town’s Unionists tittering.”

Enquiry Farce

Enquiry Farce. It’s Scotland, Our Culture and Traditions Under Attack

Greetings all,

Bryan AuchterlonieAlthough I am no longer active within the SNP and have issues with the priorities from the leadership, some things need to be said.

This enquiry has been a farce and decisions of guilt or innocence if those are the correct words to use were made before any evidence was heard.

This is a concerted attack by unionists on a small female in a political landscape dominated by those who wear an old school tie. They have targeted this “wee wuman fae Ayrshire” and identified her as a threat to the British state.

However, when you break it down to its lowest level it’s not her they are targeting, it is Scotland and our culture and institutions.

The sickening part of all this is that they are ably assisted by some of our own countrymen and women.

We have attempted to play the political game fairly and within the rules for years. If we value our country and our culture it is surely now time to be much more aggressive and confrontational within the political scene.

It is time for our leaders to rethink strategy. If that means a change in leadership then so be it, this is now a fight to exist and we must now choose.

Bryan Auchterlonie

People Are Strange – Scots are Canny

Liz LowreyOften we look to the past to get some perspective on current events. You may wonder what the 1967 Doors song about alienation and being an outsider has to do with the current state of Unionism in Scotland. We don’t need to look far to see striking similarities. Unionism is in disarray. Increasingly the cause of Unionism is akin to ET arriving on planet earth in his spacecraft. ET was a friendly wee cratur – Unionists in Scotland not so much. Desperately they cling to the Union Jack life raft adrift at sea in danger of drowning in their misinformation and falsehoods. They are all at it from the Tory non PM to the leader of the Tory light opposition. You may be aware that our ex Tory identikit MP was unceremoniously sacked from his employment with the No 10 Downing Street Union Unit. Imagine his surprise when he was refused entry to his place of work by a door person.The look on his smug face priceless. But fear not good folks I’m sure that like a phoenix from the ashes the Tory identikit man allegedly from Ochil and South Perthshire will re-animate shortly in a Scottish area near you.

As for the Tory light leader of the opposition I can only surmise that whichever lackey thought it a good idea to promote a party political broadcast shown in Scotland featuring a large Union Jack will be standing in the unemployment line shortly. Maybe he can unite with identikit man and reform the old Bitter Together band or maybe rebrand as new group Unionists United?

Seriously so the tired old tactics are very much in evidence. How often can the refrain too wee too poor to, dare I say it, too nationalist be chanted.

Each week we have to suffer the giant buffoon knowingly misname our Party at Prime Ministers Questions . If that’s all he’s got to go on I’d politely suggest he throws in the towel with immediate effect.In fact the whole sorry saga would be better named as Prime Minister’s Evasion. If I ever see him answering a question, that’s the week I’ll put on a lottery ticket. Miracles can happen.

Much has been made of the UK army bailing out Scotland to assist with the vaccine rollout. If this isn’t pathetic party politicking at a time of national crisis I don’t know what is. Whilst we remain part of the UK it’s our army too and funded in part by our taxpayers money.

And talking of money we were told yet again in an LSE report last week how poor and incapable Scotland was and how we definitely wouldn’t survive as a small independent country. Read behind the scare headlines and the report’s author is exposed as a Tory Brexiteer. Free and unfettered by the UK there is no evidence whatsoever that we would not thrive and grow our economy. We have to pause here to thank Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancashire, Michael “Glove Puppet” Gove. He fairly set the cat among the pigeons when he actually admitted that there will be costs to Brexit. Who knew? Project Fear has become Project Reality.

All this dear readers are tired old lines from the same old Bitter Together playbook. But wait, there was an even better idea. The UK considered giving us Prince Edward! We can’t have our independence but never mind we can have the failed it’s a knock out promoter resident amongst us.

That’s it then folks. I personally am relatively new to independence but having examined the pros and cons prior to 2014 I felt a sense of optimism casting my YES vote on that day so long ago now.

Many who voted Yes have been lifelong independence supporters and I’m pretty sure that if a newbie like me won’t be turned by a Royal resident there’s not many that will. Another idea bites the dust. It appears that Buck House never got the memo or if they did they possibly couldn’t comment. One does wonder what the poor deluded Unionist Unit will come up with next .

There’s no end of possibilities for further Unionist cunning plans although so far we have learnt that flags and minor royals don’t work.

Perhaps there will be a revival of Cool Britannia featuring the dream team of Blair and Brown. Not so much getting the band back together as a swan song nosedive. Maybe we will get further visitations from the non PM. After all it seemed to work once before when the desperate UK representatives lied to Scotland in a last ditch attempt to save their precious Union. Sadly at that time there were a number of folks who believed the rumours and scare tactics. Never mind the slogan Bitter Together. Scare a Pensioner to save the Union would have been a more apt campaign slogan. Happily the myths and lies surrounding pensions have been adequately squashed and there are a number of excellent videos on this subject available including on our own almondandearnsnp.org.

We all know that only thanks to the power of the Union, Scotland thumped the English rugby team on Saturday. Wonder if this will come up at Clown Ministers Question Time on Wednesday. Somehow I don’t think so!

Unionists may be strange but luckily Scots by nature are canny. We know what is required to achieve the long awaited goal of Scotland’s independence. The upcoming Holyrood Election in May is our opportunity to once and for all show our contempt for the strange unionist agenda. By returning a majority of SNP MSPs and regional list MSPs we can further cement the inroads that our Party are making towards this goal. This will indeed be an election like no other. The pandemic has changed so much in our lives, but has also shown how well Scotland can act as a small competent country. Imagine how much better we will be when fully independent.

Now is the time to stay united. Change is coming and we can all make this happen.

A Tale of Two Leaders

I’m angry, Readers. Anyone who isn’t angry is hiding in a giant fridge and closing their ears to what is happening. Perhaps such a person is also lacking any shred of concern for their fellow citizens. Enter stage left Boris Johnson the man who would be PM and then proceeded to make an abysmal failure of this task at every faltering step.

As the UK yesterday announced a devastating death toll in excess of One Hundred Thousand lost souls I watched in disbelief as the non Prime Minister addressed the Nation.

Never in the history of TV broadcasting have I witnessed a more despicable performance. I never judge a book by its cover and we should not use personal appearance to criticise our political opponents or anyone else for that matter.

However on this one occasion I will make an exception. The non PM of the disunited Kingdom looked like he had stepped out of a dustbin. If this had been Jeremy Corbyn we would have heard no amount of wailing from the Murdoch controlled press, however the unkempt and lackadaisical PM yet again escapes scrutiny. It’s not his appearance per se that makes me angry. His total lack of ability to show empathy or leadership or any kind of normal human trait is what fills me with rage and extreme anxiety.

At every step on the road that’s led us to this somber milestone there has been dithering delays, u turns and serial incompetence that we are all aware of and are far too numerous to expand on in this piece. Even yesterday when a better human being would have genuinely apologised for the tragic loss of life he made a half hearted meaningless apology that wouldn’t have been out of place at his public school if he had been caught smoking behind the bike shed. Of course we don’t know if he ever did get caught smoking behind the bike shed. However what we do know is that this self entitled excuse of a person was a member of the Bullingdon Club. One of their many vile activities included burning large denomination banknotes in front of homeless people.

If you’re not angry yet Readers you should be. The icing on the cake happens tomorrow. Despite strict laws preventing unnecessary travel, Boris Johnson has essential work in Scotland. Yes that’s right the man described as lazy by numerous ex employers is coming up to Scotland for essential work. I think he would be better tasked doing essential work in London and at least attempting to undo some of the damage his incompetent government have inflicted on the people of the UK.

We all know the real reason for the visit. The fat controller is breaking covid travel law restrictions in a futile attempt to save the Union. It’s too late for that. The Union is broken smashed to smithereens and no amount of PR is going to save it. Every time Scotland has one of his useless visitations, support for Independence increases and I’m sure that on this occasion a similar outcome will occur.

Now that I’ve discussed my anger issues I move onto happier feelings.

It is no exaggeration to state that in Scotland we have a leader in Nicola Sturgeon that we can all be extremely proud of and grateful to. Her measured steadfast and emphathic approach to this global pandemic contrasts sharply with the Pretender in No 10.

Day in day out this Beacon of Hope and inspiration stands up and tells our country vital and useful information concerning the pandemic and how this is being used to formulate the Scottish Governments plans and rational decision making. When I listen to some of the journalist questions, which I do on a daily basis, I can only surmise that our Nicola must possess the patience of a Saint. Whilst journalistic scrutiny must always be encouraged in a free democratic country like ours, I cringe inwardly at some of the stupid and inane questions. Each question is met with a measured and professional answer and full explanation. If further clarification is required, this is advised to the journalist concerned. All this is done with good grace and honesty that those listening to PM Boris Johnson can only dream of.

In Scotland there are no clandestine briefings to favoured journalists.

Yesterday’s briefing was particularly poignant as we were all asked to take a moment to silently reflect on those we had lost throughout the course of the pandemic. This, my fellow readers, is how a real leader reacts to loss and tragedy in every day life. I’m sure I wasn’t the only person watching with a lump in my throat.

Our First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon’s commitment to tackling the Pandemic is evident for all to see in her every decision and action. She is supported by an efficient and well functioning government of Members of the Scottish Parliament, all striving to do the best for their constituents and country. Preservation of life and wellbeing is the number one priority of Nicola Sturgeon and her government. Of this I have no doubt.

All of us have an opportunity in May to show our thanks and appreciation for the steadfast leader and First Minister guiding us through this crisis.

How can we do this?

Firstly it is vitally important that each and everyone of us registers for a Postal Vote. There’s an excellent presentation on Postal Voting which can be viewed on our website almondandearnsnp.org available to branch members only.

By registering for a postal vote and getting our postal ballots returned in good time we ensure that our voices are counted. How unfortunate would an ardent supporter be if they couldn’t attend to vote in person on election day because they had been told to isolate by the covid track and trace. That’s not a chance I’m prepared to take and neither should any one of us.

Secondly If you are an SNP member or anyone that wants a competent government in our country I believe that we must promote the Both Votes SNP message.

In the constituency vote we will vote for our elected representative. Jim Fairlie is the candidate in our area. Jim is an excellent candidate and I know when elected he will represent each and every one of us in his constituency.

Our second vote the list vote will be equally crucial in determining who is in charge of running our country.

In this vital election we need to ensure that a maximum number of Regional and List vote SNP MSPs are returned to Holyrood.

Anyone who has listened to or watched our First Minister can be in no doubt that she and the SNP Government are the correct people to lead our country out of this pandemic and on to a better future.

That better future will only be possible with full independence and I firmly believe that Nicola Sturgeon is the person that will deliver this for our country.

This is the stark choice facing our country in May 2021. Who will best represent us and our interests?
A self serving PM in Boris Johnson or our own First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon.

Image by Wilson Joseph from Pixabay

The Starting Gun

After one of the worst of starts to a New Year that I can recall it feels insensitive to return to the subject of politics. Families are mourning loved ones lost to the pandemic that is tearing through our country. Tuesday saw many of us watching the livestream of our own Henry Anderson’s funeral service. A tragic loss to his family and many friends and all within the SNP who he inspired. Many are fearful of losing their employment and at present there is no end in sight. We do indeed have the vaccine to be hopeful about but as we all remain bunkered down it’s going to be a long hard winter till the onset of spring. Many people are feeling scared isolated and lonely. We are sociable creatures by nature and Zoom is no substitute for proper human interaction. We must all take heart so in knowing that after this awful start to 2021 things will improve if each of us plays a part in adhering to the rules and defeating this horrible virus that has already caused so much death and heartache.

Thereafter there is something that we can all look onward to and participate in.

Last night at 18:55 the Scottish Branch Office of the Tory party led by the hapless Dross fired the starting gun on their 2021 Holyrood election campaign. I paid no heed to a word that he said as we all know that every word uttered will be denied at a later date. The lies and misinformation spouted on a daily basis have become tedious to say the least.

Earlier in the afternoon I saw Pete Wishart repeatedly ask Dross’s master the U.K. PM why the democratic rights of our fellow citizens to determine our own future should be denied. The Fat Controller had no answer and claimed he did not understand the question!!! What a waste of a private education.

Well folks we know exactly what Pete was asking. Additionally we know that by securing an overall SNP majority in May it is inconceivable that the status quo can continue.

There have been umpteen articles of late in the Unionist press some from folks who really should know better. Apparently Dross must have missed their plaintiff cries to delay the election. You me and the man on the Clapham omnibus know why the Unionists were clamouring for delay. And no it’s not The ex PM Maybot’s dither and delay tactic. It’s an attempt to subvert a result which they fine well know will not end well for their cause and will ultimately lead to the breakup of their precious Union.

We saw an amazing result in December 2019 with a big increase in SNP MPs elected. Whilst I’m glad that they are fighting our corner and standing up for Scotland and our citizens, this is no longer enough. The only way to save Scotland from the toxicity of the current Tory government is to win big in May 2021 hold our referendum when safe to do so and exit the Union with all possible speed.

The longer we remain in this toxic Union the harder it will be for Scotland to be reshaped in the form that we desire. If a tree has a rotten branch it will be chopped off and the tree has a chance of survival.The U.K. is the rotten branch clutching at Scotland.Its long spindly tentacles are trying to keep us in its grasp, but the grasp is loosening and soon the branch will be consigned to the compost heap.

The U.K. will break up. Of this I am certain. Ireland will become a united country. Scotland will be free and independent and even in Wales the calls for separation are becoming increasingly louder.

The whole world can see England in particular and the U.K. in general for what it is . A small nasty place where only the very rich and Tory acolytes prosper. We will all have seen the pathetic offerings provided to needy and hungry children in England. I wonder what the Rees Mogg children have for their lunches? Whatever they eat I’m sure it will be served to them with a silver spoon. In spite of Rees Moggs affectations I’m certain there are no hungry children in his house asking Please Sir can I have some more.

We all watched in shock and horror as events unfolded in America. How did things ever come to this sorry state. As I write this article it appears that the Tangerine One is about to be impeached for the second time. Even some of his own republican representatives are turning against a man who will go down in history as the man that didn’t make America great again. How did this happen we may wonder. Without his twitter account and his backers he has become a small demented man howling at the moon. His legacy of misinformation and lies has destroyed people’s belief in information sources. If it’s not to our liking all we need to do is call it false he uttered. We in Scotland must now start to call it out. Every lie and false statement uttered by the Tories should be labelled as such.

Dross might have been first off the starting blocks but the tortoise and the hare springs to mind. We in Scotland have been patiently waiting for Independence for many years. Independence has always been about playing the longer game and waiting for the optimum time. In my opinion the optimum time isn’t far off. We have had a series of polls all with a majority in favour of a yes vote for Independence. There will come a point when even the Fat Controller in Downing Street will realise that inevitably he cannot hold back a swelling tide of support for Independence. Dross takes great delight from criticising the elected government of Scotland whilst closing his eyes and ears to the charlatans running the Westminster government. Like Boris on his bike ride Dross has no shame.

Scotland’s time is coming and as we emerge from our bunkers we will begin anew to campaign for our democratic right to determine our own futures. Scotland voices will be heard and become so loud that not even a baby Trump in Downing Street can ignore us.