Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Political earthquake as TNS agrees with Ipsos-Mori : there is now a majority for independence

You might remember that when the sensational Ipsos-Mori poll came out last week showing a Yes majority, I suggested that what we really needed now was an independence poll from TNS - the only other firm that uses a 'real world' data collection method (ie. not volunteer online panels) for polling on Scottish affairs.  Right on cue, here is the first TNS independence poll since the referendum.  The timing is just a coincidence - TNS polls take a long time to conduct, so it was set in train well before the Ipsos-Mori result emerged.

Should Scotland be an independent country?

Yes 53%
No 47%

This is an absolutely crucial development.  It never seemed likely that the Ipsos-Mori poll was an 'outlier' in the sense that the Yes lead was an illusion caused purely by sampling issues, but if TNS had replicated the small No lead reported recently by the online firms, we might have concluded that Ipsos-Mori's distinctive methodology was producing questionable results. As it is, it looks much more like a straight split has opened up between online and 'real world' firms - with the former mostly showing a No lead and the latter showing a Yes lead.

There are a couple of caveats, however.  Firstly, both the Ipsos-Mori and TNS polls were conducted more recently than any of the online independence polls, so it's possible there has been a sudden swing in favour of independence over the last few weeks, and that the next batch of online polls will show much the same thing.  I think that's highly unlikely, but the possibility can't be entirely discounted, because neither Ipsos-Mori nor TNS have previously produced post-referendum independence polls, meaning we have no baseline to work from.

Secondly, it's unfortunately the case that it isn't just the 'real world' status of TNS and Ipsos-Mori that distinguish them from the online firms.  Neither of them weight their results by recalled referendum vote, which could theoretically explain why their results are so different.  However, TNS do (unlike Ipsos-Mori) use a form of past vote weighting, based on the election that ought to be freshest in people's minds - this year's general election.  So there's no reason to automatically assume that recalled referendum vote weighting would make a massive difference to the headline figures.

If the divergence really is being caused primarily by data collection method, it could be hugely significant.  Intuitively, most of us would probably prefer to put our trust in polls that use a completely fresh sample, rather than relying on respondents who have volunteered to be polled over and over again, and who are more likely to be politically committed.  In which case, instinct might lead us to conclude that Yes are more likely to be ahead at the moment.

Although Ipsos-Mori and TNS are showing a very similar state of play, the historical significance of each of the two polls is very different.  Ipsos-Mori have never shown support for independence at anything like the current level, whereas TNS are returning to familiar territory in showing a Yes lead - it's hard to believe given their reputation as a No-friendly pollster during the referendum campaign, but if you go back a few years there was a long spell when they were the only firm that occasionally showed a majority for independence, before a sudden and catastrophic drop in Yes support that wasn't replicated (not in full, anyway) by other pollsters.  The TNS methodology has evolved over the years, though, so the long-term trend they've shown may be somewhat less meaningful than the one shown by Ipsos-Mori.

TNS have also provided voting intention figures for next year's Scottish Parliament election...

Constituency ballot :

SNP 58% (-4)
Labour 23% (+3)
Conservatives 12% (n/c)
Liberal Democrats 5% (+2)

Regional list ballot :

SNP 51% (-3)
Labour 24% (+4)
Conservatives 11% (-1)
Greens 6% (-2)
Liberal Democrats 6% (+2)

The drop in SNP support may look slightly alarming, but in fact on the list vote it's not significant at all.  51% is identical to the party's share on the list in the TNS poll of two months ago.  It looks like the jump to 54% last month was just a quirk caused by sampling variation.  On the constituency vote it's harder to say - 58% is (unbelievably) the SNP's worst showing in a TNS poll since the general election, but they're still only 2% lower than in the two polls prior to last month.  So we could simply be looking at margin of error 'noise', or the SNP may have slipped slightly - but probably not by as much as the 4% drop suggested by the headline figures.

It's more clear-cut in Labour's case - their share of both the constituency and list vote is significantly higher than in any previous post-election TNS poll, so they probably have genuinely recovered to some extent.  There have been some suggestions that this is a 'Kezia bounce', but I'm extremely sceptical about that - I think it's more likely to be the Corbyn effect finally making itself felt.  That may come to an abrupt end on Saturday if Andy Burnham or Yvette Cooper upset the odds - if not, the next few months could be highly unpredictable.

It's interesting that the Holyrood figures from Ipsos-Mori last week were interpreted as wonderful for the SNP and dreadful for Labour, because the TNS trend suggests that Ipsos-Mori might have shown the SNP even higher and Labour even lower if they had conducted polls in June or July.

Last but not least, there's severe cause for concern in the TNS poll for the Tories.  After Ruth Davidson led her party to a disastrous all-time low of 14.9% at the general election, you might have thought the only way was up - but instead they've slipped further.  On the constituency ballot, they've dropped from 15% to 12% since the first post-election TNS poll, and on the list ballot they've slipped from 14% to 11% over the same period.  Unless she can turn things around, Davidson may end up looking like the most over-rated political leader since...oooh, Jim Murphy, probably.

126 comments:

  1. Weighted by Indyref vote?

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    1. No, by the looks of it:

      "To ensure the sample was representative of the adult population of Scotland, it was weighted to match population estimates for working status within gender, age, social grade and Scottish Parliament region, and to match turnout and share of vote from the 2011 Holyrood election (constituency vote) and the 2015 General Election.

      All interviews were conducted face-to-face, in-home using CAPI (Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing) and quota sampling."

      Delete
    2. Yes, SGE and UKGE weighted. As good as iref weighting. UKGE15 weighting should in theory be the best now as we are a year out from the iref so false recall (or regret*) could potentially kick in with iref voting recall.

      Someone mentioned they'd been polled by panelbase recently, including iref question. It uses indyref weighting. If it showed movement to Yes, I think we could safely conclude that's happening.

      Already, two polls using quite different methods concluding there's a shift is quite compelling.

      ---

      *Which the results of MORI and TNS might suggest is the case for some.
      2010 weighting was a total failure due to people saying what they actually supported, not what they voted for in a moment of tactical desperation.

      Delete
    3. "So there's no reason to assume that recalled referendum vote weighting would make a massive difference to the headline figures."

      I would love to believe that! The voter groups between indyref and GE are different though, due to different eligibility rules? Wouldnt that shift %ages slightly?

      Delete
    4. "Wouldnt that shift %ages slightly?"

      By fractions of a % if it had any influence.

      Delete
    5. Note also the GE weighting reduced the Yes from 55% to 53% as Prof C discusses on his WST blog.

      Delete
  2. Excellent.:-D

    Of course this is only being helped by the Labourpurge chaos and the odious Blairitres look set to keep that going as long as they can.

    Just wait till the nasty party chaos begins in earnest next year (or even earlier) when the tories try to work out of they are a pro-Europe and pro-EU immigration party or not. ;o)

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  3. It looks like the trend that started way back in 2013 (slow drift to YES) is continuing. It's a pity that support for independence was just short when the referendum was held, allowing a panicking NO side to break purdah and hold back the water - just! Ah well, perhaps it was meant to happen this way, thus ensuring that when indyref 2 does come along, there will be even stronger support for independence.

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  4. SNP vote intentions down a fair bit though. What's going on?

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    1. They've not changed within variance. 60...60..62...58 suggests....~60+/-3...

      Likewise 50...51...54...51 suggests ~51+/-3.

      Last poll was probably just at the upper end of variance.

      Some suggestion that Tories are maybe losing a touch to Labour is all I can see.

      Delete
    2. Hardly a fair bit. 4% is within the margin of error.

      Delete
  5. I wonder if the mortality rate among unionists is having more of an impact than expected.We are now into territory where we might say.."Its the settled will of the elderly that we stay in the union.Its the settled will of everyone else that we don't." Its only heading one way.The air of inevitability must be soaking in.

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    1. "I wonder if the mortality rate among unionists is having more of an impact than expected."

      Praying for a cold winter to further 'sway the demographics'? Not that I'd wish 'death by lack of heating' on any elderly people, unionist or not, but it's striking that something of that ilk could potentially keep the momentum towards Yes going.

      Delete
    2. Cannot believe the Yes lead in under 55 year-olds. Amazing.

      And look what's possibly round the corner, intervention in Syria, Labour leadership chaos, oil price going up, her majesty passing away, #sp16, more cuts and arrogance from the Tories...

      We might not need a cold winter.

      Delete
    3. Opportunities as well as threats, depending which way we look at it. Head down and let's get an even bigger majority this time!

      Delete
    4. I'm 49 so in that age group. I was certainly not the only person in Dundee RIC with that increasingly grizzled look, and we were by no means veteran Leftists but middle class liberal academic types.

      All the economics professors at the university where my wife works way back when the referendum was definitely going to happen put their heads and known numbers together and concluded that though they were unionist to a man, Scotland was a going concern. I know some of these people and they would have approached that as a genuine academic enquiry.

      It certainly helped me on my journey from DevoMaxer to full on Yes campaigner. I'm now about as left as I was in my 20s. It's nice. Pity I can't persuade my wife.

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    5. What do you mean by going concern?

      Delete
  6. Does a consistent lead for Yes across polls constitute "a material change"?

    I'm not suggesting we have that yet but if, over the next year or so, a clear trend materialises, is this enough?

    Mandela

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  7. Let the empire fall.

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  8. I'm loving this. Now, everyone cross their fingers for a England-Leave/Scotland-Stay vote in the EU referendum to trigger indyref2 :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or more self-defeating military action in the middle east.

      Delete
  9. Need to ensure that the SNP win a majority though!!

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  10. Yasss! F**ing magic!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Are we looking at a Malta scenario?
    They voted No, as Westminster promised lots of goodies.
    Westminster didn't deliver, and the next referendum was a Yes.
    Of course poor wee Malta didn't have the extra baggage of lots of nasty oilfields.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Dear Auld Yins - please stop reading the Daily Mail, you don't need it. You need Wings.

    Wonder where is our nutcase friend is today?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glasgow Wailing Cringe? He's awfy quiet right enough. :-)

      Delete
    2. My acronym interpretation is rather more non child friendly should we say.

      Delete
  13. Hence a day of Royalist guff on the media and that to Butchers Apron waving Brit Nat Zombies I missed a train today. Elfin parasites, did none of them have an effin job?

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  14. Ww should call a ref on the day of the eu vote.

    Britain votes to leave and we vote to stay in, should scotland be indy?

    That would confuse some unionists...

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    Replies
    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 12:29 AM

      It would only confuse your already narrow mind. Leave the Union where probably most of your ancestors were born and give Scotland over to Germany .

      Delete
    2. Just proved my point below. Idiot troll.

      Delete
  15. James

    I don't think it is a methodology difference. I think that there has been a real switch of opinion in the last few weeks as the broken Vow and the implications of theTory government sink in to ordinary people

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    Replies
    1. I think Craig is correct. The heartless Westminster Government is changing opinion.

      Delete
  16. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 9, 2015 at 9:01 PM

    What we Unionists do know is if Scotland leave the Union then border controls are definately in place. Scotland has to get a new currency in place as Sillers has said.
    And what about NATO. Will the Nat sis close Faslane? and isolate themselves from US investment. The EU has a nuclear weapon agreement with NATO. So will the Nat sis tell the UK to forget about the 500 million investment and lose the jobs. Big decisions to be made by the Nat sis but they must put their policy in writing to the Scottish people before a referendum. More so the currency and banking. No verbal abuse chaps just ideas and discussion.

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    1. You don't know f all. You've adequately proved that on various occasions here, troll. You don't deserve constructive discussion but I'll entertain you for a minute.

      Away you go with your regurgitated nonsense. Border controls? pfft, even the No campaign laid off that one.

      Plan was to replace Faslane as a HQ for the military. £500M is a drop in the ocean compared to the overall inward private investment. I'm sure they would look to retain current work force. Plan was for 15,000 military personnel, we currently have 9,600 based here, that would be an increase, that increase requires support.

      I'm going to say it, the Scottish pound pinned to the .......pound. Works else where, would work here. (That's if Westminster actually stick to what they said last year, I very much doubt it). Gives the benefit of control of fiscal policy through a Scottish central bank, stronger arguing position than last time.

      Delete
    2. "What we Unionists do know is if Scotland leave the Union then border controls are definitely in place."

      Given the equivalent of only 0.15% of the Scottish population cross the border on a regular basis, would this actually be an issue? Hell, I'm ~25 mins from it but never need to cross; only been down the M74 once in the last 15 years and I travel the world with work fairly regularly.

      http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2010/12/17120002/162

      I think this is why this threat fell flat on its erse in the iref campaign. People who live in a country don't need to visit a neighbouring one often. Maybe occasionally on business or on holiday, but that's it.

      As for the here and now... in the midst of a 'migrant crisis' ((c) UK media), surely strong border controls at Gretna should be something popular? Could help swing the Tory + UKIP vote towards independence?

      And as an aside, border post / wall construction would certainly be a real boost for the rural borders economy. In an area that's more pro-union, this could really help boost the pro-indy vote. Local Tories would see the money waved before them and go for it.

      Delete
    3. Little as funny as the "border controls" canard.

      What border controls would these be, similar to the ones what we (don't) have with Ireland?

      Delete
    4. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 12:05 AM

      Britain has an agreement with Ireland to their mutual satisfaction and interests. That does not mean a hostile anti English Scotland can obtain a similar agreement. Ireland does not share a common border with England. Irish armed forces do participate with the UN and it is not a secret do participate in joint internal security exercises with the British.

      Delete
    5. Again, utter nonsense, why did I even bother with that minute. Daft troll.

      Delete
    6. Ireland are not members of NATO (nice attempt to change things to UN from your original post - shame it failed) and share a border with the extant United Kingdom. The reason why they have free movement, right to work, right to vote is the same reason that an independent Scotland would expect the same - convenience.

      Delete
    7. GWC.

      You don't deserve civilised debate but I'm prepared to do it this once:

      "Anti-English Scotland" - I am the possessor of what is, to many ears, a relatively posh English accent. I live in Glasgow, which is pro-independence. I never get any hassle for sounding English. Could you please knock it off with that crashing nonsense and make the case for the union, not invent stuff.

      Delete
  17. 'Nat sis'? 'No verbal abuse chaps just ideas and discussion?'

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 9, 2015 at 11:10 PM

      Nat sis is derived from the fact that the Nat sis say are to the left of Labour and more socialist therefore Nat sis is an abbreviation Of National Socialist. Pretty fair and resentative methinks. Not being disrespectable but it is your claim not mine although deep down you are right wing.

      Delete
    2. http://cdn.meme.am/instances/500x/61624198.jpg

      Delete
    3. Ha ha, nice try GWC, I think we all know with your continual ref to Germany, what you were implying. Silly, silly troll.

      Delete
    4. The only thing Nat sis is derived from is your warped mind GWC.
      Do keep digging tho ....

      Delete
  18. We could move the border to the existing wall of Hadrian to save money :-)

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 9, 2015 at 11:22 PM

      You would not save money as most welfare recipients are in the Nat si socialist central belt. Dumfries and Galloway possibly Orkney and Shetland would vote and insist to remain in the UK and are entitled to do so. It is called self determination as the Nat sis would say.


      Delete
    2. http://cdn.meme.am/instances/500x/61624198.jpg

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    3. Hmmm, that would add extra spice to Newcastle/Gateshead rivalry. But would the magpies play in the Scottish league? There would be no European footie if they stayed in the Englandshire leagues, like Berwick Rangers cannot play in Europe ;-)

      Delete
    4. GWC. Large numbers of older middle class people retire to Dumfries and Galloway from England. I know lots who voted and campaigned for Yes, but overall, on all counts, this is the demographic group most likely to vote No. North and South of the border, a majority believe Scotland will become independent. People who feel British and don't want to live in an independent Scotland won't move here. People who want to live in a place becoming more, not less democratic - Yes voters - will come here. D and G will be heading Yes-wards too.

      Delete
  19. Did BBC hand out free union jacks in Melrose...wouldn't put anything past them.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 9, 2015 at 11:16 PM

      You are so ignorant it is the Union Flag. And what do you make of your fellow traitor Scots cheering on the Queen. Have you got them on camera! For future interrogation.

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    2. http://cdn.meme.am/instances/500x/61624198.jpg

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  20. http://cdn.meme.am/instances/500x/61624198.jpg

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  21. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 9, 2015 at 11:38 PM

    Annon. You seem to be moving your position and want to retain and increase the jobs rather than the luvvie raw mince eaters that go on about the nice human race. The Nat sis need to be clear and say to the UK we will close the base and have no concern about lost jobs and do not waste the money on redevelopment. Fair doos to them then sensible people can get on with defending the nation(s) whether the Jocks like it or not.

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    1. http://cdn.meme.am/instances/500x/61624198.jpg

      Delete
  22. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 12:19 AM

    Anon. Where will the Jock of the North Stock Exchange be based? And what currency will be floated on the Markets. Bottles of Buckfast are not acceptable in the China Market.

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  23. http://38.media.tumblr.com/23669433596e835989de8a604b6767fe/tumblr_mgkz8fYHKe1r39fszo1_250.gif

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  24. Long time reader, first comment.

    Just wanted to say that I love this blog for two reasons.

    1. The insightful analysis.
    2. The comedy unionists in the comments

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    Replies
    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 1:06 AM

      Actually this is not a Unionist Blog it is a Nat si blog the comedy is on them. And their politics in which they have no policies thus the comedy.

      Delete
    2. Isn't GWC something else? His incisive analysis coupled with his appalling punctuation,diction and enunciation make for hilarious reading

      Delete
    3. It's quite amazing... It reminds me of the old days, back in 2010, when there was no chance in hell of a referendum, and before we'd debunked all the arguments...

      Delete
  25. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 1:00 AM

    Anon, Are you OK I can phone police Scotland if you need help!

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    1. https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-mWARIdcBeyU/UPtliwFuOHI/AAAAAAAAAoE/YtJaTVD8eE4/s733/i-can-typing.gif

      Delete
  26. Cheers to James for an open forum. But time to block trolls like 'Glasgow Working Class' who is abusing the freedom to post. Unionist style and so dull.

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    Replies
    1. I agree, if a unionist can bring reasoned argument to the blog Im willing to hear what he/she has to say but GWC brings nothing but pejorative and vexatious argument, get rid.
      jdman

      Delete
    2. I agree. I dread opening this blog now. Last thing anyone wants is a mutual appreciation society, we all know No voters and respect their point of view. But GWC has no place here. He's a Scotland hater. Needs put in a taxi one-way down the M74, or a ferry to NI, depending on which of his prejudices are most acute.

      Delete
  27. Yes the funs over. If unionists didn't make it past year two English grammar. Then we should not have to read their indecipherable, ill informed nonsense.

    James please block these people. It's like allowing Katie Hopkins to express her opinion on the Hedron Collider in the New Scientist.

    Quite why someone so self loathing as GWC. Is not seeking self worth counselling, instead of using this forum is beyond me. Perhaps a wee visit to any free NHS practitioner might offer him some self esteem.

    ReplyDelete
  28. If james does not want to block him (and flippin' Aldo!) that's his prerogative, but I'd be saying just desert the blog for a while and let James debate with the trolls, or let them abuse themselves inot a corner. While they're around just don't bother posting. It really is no fun anymore, and that's what the trolls want. let them have the goddam blog if james wants them,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For the seventeen billionth time, it's literally impossible for me to "block" people. The best I could do would be to spend half my waking existence deleting comments individually, but I'm not going to do that.

      Delete
  29. C'mon james, GWC is clearly working or otherwise engaged during the day, he appears like clockwork after his tea and probably a good slap around of the wife. How hard and time consuming can it be just to delete the days comments!! He'd soon give up.

    ReplyDelete
  30. In southern France right now. Just conversed with a nice English lady, who wishes Scotland well and thinks Independence would be "what's right" for us.
    I could only agree and expressed the same good will toward England.
    "On, but I live in France now, dear" she said.

    ReplyDelete
  31. This poll clearly shows the momentum is with "no" - a 9 point lead cut to 5 points. Wow. Just......wow!

    Are you 'no' yet?

    Aldo

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    Replies
    1. Nice try, Aldo. The last TNS poll was Yes 50, No 50.

      Delete
    2. LOL. You know the TNS poll fieldwork is earlier than the MORI fieldwork right?

      Delete
    3. Aldo apples and pairs logic sees huge surge in support for indy from 5 points to 9 points over a week or so!

      Delete
  32. Why fool yourself Aldo. What does that do to your head. How does pretending something is fact, increase your self esteem?

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    Replies
    1. Aldo's a Tory. They're not great with numbers as he demonstrates, so go easy on him.

      Delete
  33. I'm simply parodying the announcements from the Yes campaign last year, where every poll showed 'momentum', in some way.

    Look, another poll will appear in a couple of weeks showing a No lead of 2 or 5 points or something in that region. This far out from a referendum, it hardly matters anyway. I'm sure James will be aware of a spate of opinion polls in late 2006 that showed majority support for Scottish independence - 44/42, 51/37 and 51/39 in favour of indy. A year later we elected the first ever SNP government. People could have been forgiven for believing that indy was inevitable - but we rejected it by a double digit margin 7 years later.

    So, no, polls don't immediately concern me. I'm liable to pay much closer attention to the justification for independence and the plans for implementing it. If they are found wanting, then I don't need to worry.

    And I'm not worried :0)

    Aldo

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    Replies
    1. Of course you're not, Aldo. The screams of "THIS ISN'T HAPPENING!!!!!" are a figment of our imaginations.

      Delete
    2. "So, no, polls don't immediately concern me"

      Says a man who spends an awful lot of time on a polling site.

      I guess we can expect to see you back in the few weeks ahead of the next iref, whenever that is.

      Anyway, cheers Aldo and catch you then!

      Delete
    3. So, no comment on the 2006 polls then?

      It's just a little bit of history repeating.....

      Aldo

      Delete
    4. I'm liable to pay much closer attention to the justification for independence and the plans for implementing it.

      You'd be better trying to justify Westminster rule. That's where your problem lies, e.g. from the conclusions of the SRS:

      The median (swing) voter:
      – Feels more Scottish than British
      – Wants almost all powers at Scottish level
      – Questions legitimacy of Westminster government

      Delete
    5. It's more than just a polling site, surely? We discuss pretty much everything on here pertaining to Scottish independence - even tangential stuff.

      But if you want to discuss polls then surely you must keep in mind the caveat that a trend takes a while to establish itself. You lot are cock a hoop over a couple of polls among literally thousands that have been conducted - and which aren't particularly rare in history, as I have shown. You need to calm down. Your desperation is showing.

      Aldo

      Delete
    6. Aldo, you're simply not paying attention. The Ipsos-Mori poll was the first in history to show a Yes lead. It doesn't get much "rarer in history" than that.

      Delete
  34. Deficit, trade, taxation, public spending, currency, defence - bread and butter issues Skier. These are the things which will decide any future indyref - not some polling done years earlier.

    So far, the SNP / Yes campaign has not reflected on why it lost.

    Aldo

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    Replies
    1. It's the record of the Tory government that's most important. So far, not good. Unemployment rising, business / consumer confidence falling...growth rates revised downwards...losing votes in the HoC already...a party bitterly divided...

      Dear, dear.

      Delete
    2. Those proposing radical change have to first of all prove that it can work. The SNP has singularly failed to do this and has not done anything to correct its mistakes or make its plans fuller / more honest / more workable. We're still stuck with a fudge over currency. No answer to North Sea oil decline either. No answer to the tartan austerity that would have to be imposed, by John Swinney's own admission.

      Any travails of the tory government pale in comparison to what would happen if Scotland broke away from the UK under the nationalists' current non plan.

      Aldo

      Delete
    3. And Yet there is a majority for independence. It's the unionists that should be panicking and reflecting on what they are doing wrong, because at the moment independence is looking inevitable

      Delete
    4. Aldo seems ever ready to avoid discussing the abject failures of the current UK Tory administration. A weak, divided party which is losing control of the economy and Europe. The fact that the Tories are already losing HoC votes in the face of a Labour party also deeply divided is testament to the enormity of the Tory shambles.

      All across Scotland people are moving to independence, satisfied with the arguments for it. Yet Aldo can't see, no matter how much polling evidence is before him, that it is Westminster and the Tories causing this, not some SNP brilliance. The SNP are just doing a decent enough job and people see them as a vehicle to independence. Demanding the SNP spell out every detail of independence to someone who backs indy but plans to e.g. vote Green, Tory or Labour post-independence shows how poorly Aldo and other unionists grasp the situation.

      I suspect Aldo will not wake up to reality until its too late.

      The Tories just can't admit to their own failings and how ultimately it is they who have so damaged the union and they who will finally destroy it.

      Jeez, they are even screwing up Northern Ireland too! Their amateurism in government couldn't be more stark when it comes to the crisis they caused there. Like rabbits in headlights when it comes to having to actually govern.

      No wonder polls show their vote in Scotland declining further. People vote for competence, not a divided omnishambles of a party.

      Delete
    5. A fair summation. Since last September the Tories have done everything in their power to destroy the Union. They simply cannot see it, or maybe they do not really care as much as they say they do.

      However, that does not mean that t win a referendum campaign the SNP has not got to come up with some credible answers to some fundamental challenges. The currency cannot be ducked, neither can the declining oil revenues. There also needs to be acceptance - on both sides of the border - that economically the two countries are inextricably linked, whatever happens politically. Over 50% of all Scottish exports go to England. Should England no longer be in the EU that is going to be a very big deal.

      Delete
    6. @ Anon.

      You either cannot be convinced of the merits of Independence, or you are just here to wind up.

      All the empire used Sterling once. Indeed the coins were still identical in Eire and Australia into the 1970's.Today an Isle of Mann Pound fits a Glasgow parking meter. The currency question just needs a little bit of research. The great leap of faith is believing that Sterling - with the debt of the UK - is worth any more than chocolate money. But if an impartial broadcaster made a program about the fact that money DOES NOT REALLY EXIST, perhaps it would get through to people that it does not matter if you use beads or beer caps, it is fine so long as all the parties to the transaction agree the notional value.

      Scotland runs a trade surplus. Our beer caps will have takers abroad in exchange for their digital "money".

      It is not in the interest of the EU, nor of rUK, for trade barriers to be erected if rUK leaves the Euro. They might be brinksmen in the south, but they are not stupid. They even managed to convince you there was a currency problem - ha ha ha.

      And the EU? Watch how hard it is for rUK to leave even if they do vote to go. Brussels is the Hotel California.

      Oil prices go up and down. We have been here before. The oil will be there for quite a while, and the OBR is no better able to forecast its future price than is Warren Buffett or my sisters wean. What can be safely said, because hindsight is a marvellous thing, is that UKPLC made a lot out of it in the past and spent all of it restructuring the English economy, fighting wasteful wars and building fortunes for its elite. Some other West European nations appear to have used their windfall better. Do you really want to take a chance that they are telling you the truth? That they are right, its all gone? Because they consistently always have done everything they could in Scotland's interest, have they not? Get a grip man.

      So if you are just an undecided, don't come here and carp, go do your research. If you are a worried reluctant yesser, likewise. If you a Unionist troll, please just fuc# off, cos we have heard all that piss before and we all know its piss. We are not nationalists because we are daft, or brainwashed, or ignorant. I was a heart yes/head no until I did my own research. It really is so obvious that Scotland needs to be Independent that it amazes me anyone can be a Unionist now who isn't just thick.

      Delete
    7. Bang on.
      I thoroughly enjoyed reading that, whoever you are.
      Thank you sir/madam.

      Delete
  35. I think electing 56 SNP Mps and still having a Tory Government. Has finally hit home with people who vote in Scotland. How utterly futile and pointless it is staying in the UK.

    The fact is that Scotland if it is a nation. Has absolutely no common purpose with the majority English electorate. It took the SNP wipeout of Unionist mps to make it clear to people, that Scotland is treated as a region of England as far as Westminster is concerned.

    We are pissing in the wind while we remain in the UK. People like Aldo might be happy with regional status. But thinking Scots are saying, who are we and why are we?

    Aldo and Co are happy as pigs in shit. They take pride in loyalty to a master who ignores and abuses them. The master laughs behind their backs at their undying loyalty.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Och, we're just so oppressed

      Delete
    2. I have been thinking along similar lines. Even though we returned an overwhelming number of SNP MP's they are treated as though they were the enemy by the Lab / Con majority. This is despite the SNP accepting the referendum result and being willing to work for the common good.

      Hopefully, more people are waking up to the fact that they were sold a pig in a poke just prior to the referendum. The enoblement of political folk almost always goes down badly with most Scots. And when it is Scots that are not with the zeitgeist, well...

      I also think Cameron is not, err..., very good.

      It would take a genius to alienate those that voted No, within, what (?), a year, as he has done. Or is this the drip, drip, drip of his immediate post referendum speech? I kind of think those of us that voted yes maybe pointed it out to those of us that voted no, and so, it came to pass, they were sold a pup.

      People hate that!

      Delete
  36. Is there just the one Local Council By-election today in Scotland? Oh and when can we expect the result from the Leith Walk ward?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Midlothian West by-election is today. I've been out canvassing for Kelly Parry, the SNP candidate to replace Owen Thompson (now MP). We're quietly optimistic.

      Delete
    2. Sorry, here's the link. http://www.midlothian.gov.uk/info/200197/local_government/1469/by-electionward_4-midlothian_west

      Delete
  37. Someone compared Malta's struggle for independence with Scotland's. There are similarities. However the common denominator in allied British Colonies is this.

    When said colonies have usefulness in terms of strategic and economic importance. UK Ok cling on like a fly to shite. When the importance becomes less, UK make it easy for them to leave.

    Malta lost its strategic importance after the 60s and the gradual decline of Russian Empire, middle East conflict etc.

    In the end Malta just left after a quick referendum. Scotland is in the unfortunate position of having oil, Whisky, Missile Base and seas shared with Europe and a strategic Atlantic ocean.

    UK will not let us leave quietly. We will have to fight for our independence. The only saving grace is Cameron being so vain and egotistical. He may let Scotland go to ensure Tory rule for the next 20 years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The only saving grace is Cameron being so vain and egotistical. He may let Scotland go to ensure Tory rule for the next 20 years.

      If England loses Scotland (forget about Wales and NI for a moment), any potential change will be towards a more right wing, tin pot Ruritarian dictatorship than they have right now. Hard to credit, but it is possible!

      Democracy, will be proclaimed and eluded as suits. It will be no more than the kings new clothes, there but not there. The judiciary will be bought and sold. Whatever the government wants will have absolutely ace legal opinion opinioning that whatever the government does is absolutely AOK.

      We are not far away from that right now.

      So, I hope Cameron does see us as expendible in his rush to Ruritania.

      I certainly don't want to be a part of his fantasy world. And I sympathise with English folk that completely detest him. They have to organise and stop being so bloody incapable of sustaining an arguement against neo-liberal bullshit.

      But me?

      I just want out of this fantasy land of "punching above our weight" or:

      "We don't want to fight but by jingo if we do...
      We've got the ships, we've got the men, and got the money too!"


      It harp's back to a time long gone.

      I doubt this Conservative Government, where being other than a multi-millionaire seems to nearly debar you from Cabinet ( unless of course you are completely insane, which opens doors) , is really about to get it's head out of it's arse and look around it.

      Sorry, bit of a rant about the State of Britain.......

      Delete
    2. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 11:19 PM

      You may get what you wish for however do remember a free England would be free to do what it wants. They will owe Scotland nothing and will compete for inward investment ruthlessly. They could even stop Scots from moving south for the first time in 300 years. So is it Germany for you or our neighbour.
      SCOTLAND IS A NATION in a Union. I prefer the Union.

      Delete
  38. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 10:04 PM

    Och well I suppose I will have to accept that being a Brit will render me a second class citizen in Scotland scared to display the Union Flag. The Scottish thought police monitoring us. AYE.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glasgow Working Class,

      Assuming, for a moment that Scotland did become independent, would you really want to wave a Union Jack in the air of a free country?

      Personally - and I think this might be a majority view in the landscape of an independent Scotland - that would be viewed as a tad eccentric.

      No more, no less.

      If it were in support of QE1, well, most folk, according to polls would agree. (Or is she, legitimately QEII in your eyes, which would explain the failure of history being taught in any school you attended. You are such a wind up GWC.)

      It would be interesting to know how many people, in what is now the Republic of Ireland, continued to display their Union Flag after independence, and what happened to them.

      Anyway, great joy with you raising the Butchers Apron in an Independent Scotland.

      May your life be long and not without incident!

      Seriously.

      Flags are crap.


      [On a different note, thanks for reminding me about Glasgow's Trolleybuses. I had near forgotten their existence. Fascinating stuff.]

      Delete
    2. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 10:46 PM

      I was born in a free Scotland that is part of a Union so why should I not be able to fly a Union Flag. My ancestors fought the Nazis to keep us free.

      Delete
    3. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 10:58 PM

      Douglas you say flags are crap but the Nat sis are congregating en masse at rallies just like the BNP do. And my mrs changed to NO after the rent a mob turned up at the BBC Scotland studio on the Clyde.

      Delete
    4. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 11:06 PM

      Douglas I stayed with my ma for while up the pend at Brigton x and the F,n Trolley used to hit a stank as it passed by. NO sleep after 0530.

      Delete
  39. Those ticks are hard to shift. I blame lying in long grass too long. Got one on Skye, easier to remove from a leg than a blog though!

    ReplyDelete
  40. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 10:27 PM

    Being a muppet pensioner living aff the state now it seems the next referendum will be a battle between pensioners and 16 - 28 year olds the latter fucking aff out of Scotland after voting to fucking screwing it up and uz pensioners.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am a pensioner too. Neither you nor I are 'living off the state'. We paid good money for the pension we have.

      And no-one is about to deny you your pension, not Holyrood, nor Westminster nor the Department of Work and Pensions.

      What other lies did you adsorb in your way to being completely misinformed?

      Which, unfortunately, you are.

      Did you speak to a PPC for the Labour Party or summat?

      Delete
    2. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 10:42 PM

      So who will pay my pension I worked and paid tax for in this new free ! Scottish State?

      Delete
    3. If your British Broadcasting Corporation are reporting it and your British Government are stating it as fact, then it must be true, mustn't it?

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-27309215

      Delete
  41. The interesting statistic for me is the shift away from how they voted at GE15 (p3 t1). From X to DK %, Con 34 lab 25 LD 37 SNP 13 Oth 44.
    Is this those that voted for "stability" realising they've been shafted?
    Otherwise is that there is a huge reservoir for the SNP to tap, if they can.

    ReplyDelete
  42. So our troll is an old boy. Just shows that with age, knowledge and intelligence are not automatically guaranteed.

    I wonder if he realises that Brown destroyed the pensions years ago. Perhaps Scotland would be unique in Western Europe of not being able to provide state pensions for its citizens.

    We have great schools in Scotland. It's a pity Gwc never finished his education. Perhaps he was too busy with flute lessons or galous swagger dancing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oi. Leave us flute players alone!

      *gets back to the tricky bit in the Telemann sonata*

      Delete
    2. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 11:26 PM

      I was too busy working for a living to emmit wind like you do. Get a hair cut and a job. Stop sponging.

      Delete
    3. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 11:30 PM

      What do you mean by our troll! Is this a collective blog of the converted? LOL��

      Delete
  43. Don't think Gwc will be familiar with that piece! 😂

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  44. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 10, 2015 at 11:43 PM

    Time for my last glass of Pinot and a small Port to celebrate the Queen and Service. GENTLEMEN the QUEEN. Good night Nat sis.

    ReplyDelete
  45. James,I think the drop in the Tory percentage is down to two things.First,the actions of Cameron,Osborne and IDS with regard to austerity have done no favours to the Tory party in Scotland.Second,Davidson has fallen foul of the Peter Principle.She was never leadership material and has been promoted at least two grades above her capabilities. The same thing could also be said about Dugdale. Labour might have jumped three percentage points but that is the Corbyn effect,certainly not Dugdales performance at Holyrood. As for Rennie and the Lib/Dems,the only outstanding factor about them is their total irrelevance.Off topic,taking into consideration the Peter Principle,the Dunning-Kruger effect and the Dilbert Principle,isn't GWC the perfect example?

    ReplyDelete
  46. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 11, 2015 at 11:29 PM

    Anon. A week in politics, do remenber that. THE MOST committed Nat sis will vote for the Union if you cannot get your act together. People do not vote be impoverished. You need a Bank and a stock market and a Currency and a lack of idiots like you to have a great country. AND DEFENSE FROM IDIOTS LIKE YOU.



    ReplyDelete
  47. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 11, 2015 at 11:43 PM

    Douglas I am informed the Nat sis are planning another flag waving session in Glasgow next week.. This is a Glasgow Open Day Weekend in case you did not know.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Need to pick you up on something there James. The MORI poll is not the first ever to show an absolute majority for "Yes" prior to adjustment. In 2006, there were two such polls, one showing a 51/37 breakdown in favour of independence. They are archived on UK Polling Report.

    There have been big pro independence leads in the past - but ultimately they came to nothing. I've made this point several times. Each time it has been ignored.

    ReplyDelete