Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Canadian TV fails to learn the lesson of the 2008 debacle

At this time last night I was watching a live-stream of the Canadian election results programme on CBC. It was mostly a pleasurable experience, with one of the nastiest right-wing governments in the democratic world being shown the door at long last.  The pro-independence and left-wing Bloc Quebecois also made a partial recovery, jumping from two seats to ten, which will nicely complicate the (bogus) narrative that the Quebec sovereignty movement is in relentless decline.  The main disappointment was that the Liberals unexpectedly won an overall majority, because that will probably turn Trudeau into a conservative on the subject of electoral reform.  As we know in this country, it's very hard to convince a leader who has just won a majority under a majoritarian system that it would be far better to make it almost impossible for anyone to win a majority again.

And I had one other little bugbear.  I really hoped that the Canadian broadcasters had learned the lesson of their 2008 debacle, when they nonsensically "projected a Conservative minority government".  What they meant by that, of course, was that the Conservatives would be the largest single party in a hung parliament.  But their loose use of language had serious repercussions a few weeks later, when the Liberals and NDP entered into a coalition agreement with Bloc Quebecois support.  Some people were outraged : "This is a coup!  Didn't we just elect a Tory minority government?"  Well, actually, no you didn't.  You elected a parliament in which the Liberals, NDP and Bloc held a majority between them, and therefore what was happening was entirely legitimate, and should have been considered unremarkable.  But the confusion was understandable given that TV networks had fed viewers the fiction that it's somehow possible to "elect a minority government".  That may well have played a part in the coalition agreement failing to stick.

I regret to say that they've learned nothing.  When the moment came to project a Liberal government last night, the CBC host added as an afterthought : "we're making no call on whether it will be a majority or minority government".  In which case they weren't in a position to project a Liberal government at all - merely that the Liberals would be the largest party.  If there's any chance of a hung parliament, you don't yet know for sure who will be forming the government - it's as simple as that.

So why did they do it?  It was probably an infatuation with the idea that an election programme is only complete when viewers can be presented with a clear-cut winner.  But the reality is that if voters decline to choose an outright winner on the night, the TV networks have no business choosing one for them.

113 comments:

  1. Interesting James. And supposing the outcome of next year's Holyrood election were SNP 61 seats, Green 3, unionist parties 65 (a majority) between them, would you see a unionist alliance led by First Minister Kezia Dugdale as legitimate?

    Unlikely scenario but we live in an era of unlikely scenarios.

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    1. Of course it would be legitimate. In some ways it would almost be welcome, because a Labour/Tory coalition would last six months and finish Labour off for good.

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    2. Nope. It would last five years barring by election defeats and then the people would judge. A unionist alliance would deliver a distinctly left of centre, liberal agenda. The tory involvement would be to basically make up the numbers and keep out the SNP. I think they'd be happy with that.

      However, more of a discussion for 2019/21 than next year I think, barring a big upset in the next 7 months.

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    3. Btw, do we have any idea yet the duration of the next Holyrood parliament - 3, 4 or 5 years?

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    4. "It would last five years barring by election defeats"

      On your own arithmetic, it would take just one by-election defeat, but that isn't actually the point - it wouldn't last because it would implode from within.

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    5. Out of interest, where would the pissed off labour voters go in such a scenario - the SNP, I presume? But what if they are unionists? What if they prefer the tories ultimately to the SNP? If you believe the UK is always preferable to indy and you are of a left persuasion, your options logically go something like this:

      1) Labour
      2) Lib Dems
      3) Tories

      ..and that's it. Switching to the other lot simply isn't an option if you believe indy Scotland would be worse than Tory UK.

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    6. The Tory / Liberal Democrat coalition did not implode from within - it went the distance. Many predicted the collapse of the government and a GE within a year at most. It didn't happen.

      There would be two powerful motivational factors holding together the coalition I suggest. A national crisis - the threat to the union and to Scotland's finances. A common enemy - the SNP.

      I think it could work, with tories as cheerleaders rather than hands on decision makers. Although the public may warm to the idea of tories running education and law and order.

      By the way, this whole thing about imploding from within implies irreconcilable differences. But doesn't Scottish nationalism teach that 'red and blue tories' are just the same? Are you acknowledging a fundamental ideological difference between enemies you previously cast as tweedledum and tweedledee?

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    7. The Tory/Lib Dem coalition was not a Labour/Tory coalition. The clue is in the names of the parties.

      And there is indeed a diehard unionist Labour vote. It's about 20% of the electorate, and isn't enough to thwart an SNP majority. Sorry.

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    8. Still very different though. A bunch of tories and a bunch of sandal wearers - who'd have thought it?

      So you do admit there are important ideological differences between tory and labour? It would certainly seem so, going by what you have said.

      Your final statement is based on the assumption that the polls are correct and not failing to pick up on some hidden factor. Shy unionists, anyone? What percentage of the samples are don't knows / refuseniks - 10%? Could make a difference - if they plonk for pro union parties in the end.

      Then there's the economic argument - how can you build the promised utopia with less money and a dying oil industry? It could yet flip people back over to Labour / Liberal from SNP / Green.

      Don't count your chickens.

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    9. "A bunch of tories and a bunch of sandal wearers - who'd have thought it?"

      You're talking as if Nick Clegg isn't a Tory. It's really odd.

      "So you do admit there are important ideological differences between tory and labour?"

      Aldo, what planet are you living on, man? Did you sleep through Jeremy Corbyn becoming leader of the Labour party? I can exclusively reveal that Jeremy Corbyn is not Nick Clegg. He's not a Tory.

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    10. My money is also very much on yessers staying at home, thinking it's a done deal or not quite comprehending the importance / closeness of the vote. Meanwhile, the unionists will be out in force, voting tactically. Tactical voting was ridiculed last time - but it may well have saved the remaining unionist MPs. In Holyrood, it has far greater potential.

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    11. Tactical voting in a PR election? Best of luck with that, Aldo.

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    12. The economic argument works both ways.

      If the Scottish budget continues to fall or the economy worsens, then it becomes clear that far more economic powers are needed for Holyrood than ineffective income tax devolution.
      The real problem is the Tories backtracking on the referendum promises and the expectation of significant home rule.

      When you have one party pushing for more powers, and another wanting to stymie the very parliament they sit in, then many are going to side with the aspirational party over the vowbreakers.

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    13. Nope, Nick Clegg isn't a tory. He's into all the touchy feely pc stuff and he just loves benefits and Europe! While some tories are pro EU due to pragmatism, Nick Clegg is positively fanatical about it. No - definitely not a tory.

      Corbyn is UK leader, yes - but Kezia is still the Scottish leader.

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    14. It isn't purely PR though - and there's no use voting tory in the regional ballot, say, in Dundee for example when a vote for labour might add / retain a labour list MSP.

      There is scope for tactical voting - just not in the way the Greens and RISE think, lol!

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    15. The vow has been / is being delivered though. Sweeping powers over taxation and welfare. What more could you want or realistically seek without disrespecting the vote against independence (which presumably includes independence by the back door).

      Also, I'd love to hear some plans about how these new powers will be used to better the lot of Scottish people. All I heard out of the SNP conference was a load of bollox essentially - no detail, no plans, no substance. You will have greater tax and spend powers in a time of austerity - how do you intend using them? Surely that isn't difficult to answer. Or are they crapping themselves over tax rises?

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    16. "The vow has been / is being delivered though."

      Bless.

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    17. Keeping in mind the actual promise was to set up a commission to look into greater powers and then implement the suggested changes, the UK parliament has fulfilled its side of the bargain. Now, what will the SNP do with these new powers? They wont say. They're too busy with their grudge and grievances routine - Project Whinge.

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    18. "Keeping in mind the actual promise was to set up a commission to look into greater powers"

      Rubbish. The Vow said nothing at all about a commission.

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    19. I think you're confusing statements made by politicians with press releases.

      Now, when will the SNP abandon Project Whinge and tell us what they will do with the new powers? Hopefully the new powers will be utilised to a greater extent than the tax raising powers the SNP had all along yet declined to use even once and which they allowed to lapse.

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    20. "I think you're confusing statements made by politicians with press releases."

      And I think you're confusing statements made after the referendum with statements made before it. You've got this one wrong, Aldo. Try again.

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    21. Been waiting for this line from the unionists, as sure an admission of duplicity (and impending defeat) as is likely to get.

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    22. The scenario Aldo describes simply wouldn't happen.If the SNP get one less seat than a majority they will either carry on as a minority government or,in my opinion more likely,stand down and let the biggest unionist party form a minority government.I doubt if the Liberals would want to take part in a formal coalition to form a minority government.There would be no advantage in a parliamentary unionist alliance,because they could vote down any call for a second referendum without an alliance.An alliance could only be useful for preventing an SNP majority.To do that it would have to be in place at the election and involve all sorts of highly risky strategies.Interesting topic,though.But distracting us from the Topic of this thread,which is the Canadian result.

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    23. Also is entirely correct. Switching from Labour to Tory IS preferable to switching to the SNP if you are visceral UK, i.e., if you believe your country is the UK, especially since there is no discernible difference between them (Corbyn doesn't seem to be the left messiah his disciples bigged him up to be) The question is, however, how many Scots actually believe that anymore? How many of the NO majority said "no" out of fear, and how many because they were loyal to Britain?

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    24. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    25. How else could relevant powers for transfer be identified fairly and democratically other than by creating a cross party commission of the parties of the Scottish Parliament? What did you expect Cameron to do - dream up some new powers while reclining in a comfy chair in his private gentlemens' club? Now that would be a disgrace.

      What do the SNP intend to do with the new powers? Can foodbank users expect extra welfare payments? A country is waiting to hear how it will be governed. Or will it just be business as usual?

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    26. You don't have to be a passionate British nationalist to prefer the tories to the SNP. You just have to believe that indy Scotland would be poorer than Tory controlled Scotland. Hope can't magic away a massive deficit. It can't give you a strong and stable currency or EU membership. It can't stop banks and insurance firms leaving the country.

      Realists will choose tory over SNP.

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    27. "You don't have to be a passionate British nationalist to prefer the tories to the SNP"

      But it certainly helps. That's why there are so few of you.

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    28. So then you think it was fear, not loyalty, which won the referendum?

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    29. Realism, I would say.

      There are plenty tories James. We run the UK and your heroine Miss Sturgeon is subordinate to Mr Cameron.

      In fact, I heard she had to kiss his ring.

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    30. Is that in the same way that Cammo is subordinate to the European People's Party, and had to kneel before Jean-Claude Juncker?

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    31. "There are plenty tories James."

      Not in Scotland, there aren't, which was the point we were discussing. But you knew that, Aldo, you silly-billy.

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    32. A situation that will be remedied by tax increases to pay for greater socialism. It wont be the English posting cheques this time. The Scots will be called upon themselves to fund their own largesse - finally.

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    33. Shame we can't put photos on here. I have an excellent one of Nicola Sturgeon paying homage to Mr Cameron, kneeling before him and massaging his leg.

      Delete
  2. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 21, 2015 at 2:01 AM

    Canada has a problem with its own history. My neice now a granny did not know who was the first Prime Minister of Canada and that he attended the Ramshorn Church, Ingram St, Glasgow. She has lived in Canada since 1965. It is no wonder Nat sis can tell any story to the faithfull.

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  3. Aldo: "Keeping in mind the actual promise was to set up a commission to look into greater powers and then implement the suggested changes"

    Interesting. Could you provide relevant citation, Aldo?

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    Replies
    1. No, he can't. Apparently this was merely an implied "actual promise", rather than one that was actually uttered in the form of actual words.

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  4. I watched the programme live for a while. I was struck how quick the results came in. Perhaps we should move to their system where the counts are done at the polling station rather than being taken to a central place for counting.

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    1. In many countries they'd be shocked at moving the ballots to another location for counting. It's considered very bad practice because of the potential for tampering.

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  5. Aldo - Like a lot of unionists. You are inventing fantasies. Things like SNP in meltdown, Yes voters not turning up at Holyrood 2016, the SNP not wanting independence!

    It is total delusional fantasy, created in the mind of someone who is terrified and panic driven. Your cosy empire is over Aldo. There will be no complacency on the Yes side and independence will come whether you believe it or not.

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    1. We've been waiting since 1934. It hasn't come yet, lol

      In relation to 2016 I'm talking about things that COULD happen. To be honest, the long term interests of unionism are probably best served by another SNP government. Indy is off the table and their public service fails will return to haunt them. By 2021, people will be fed up with them sufficiently to remove the pro indy majority.

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    2. Sorry, on what planet is "indy off the table"?

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    3. Oh come on James. A heavy defeat just last year, polls still against you, hostile British government, oil industry that would barely fill a child's piggybank, "triggers" that are unreachable barring some massive unexpected event coming straight out of the blue.

      There will not be an indyref in the next parliament. If you expect one, you are kidding yourself on.

      Boy are you lot going to be disappointed!

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    4. In what universe can 50% Yes /50% No be described as "polls still against you"? ref: http://blog.whatscotlandthinks.org/2015/09/scotland-a-year-on-a-divided-nation/

      In what universe does "a hostile British government" lead to fewer people wanting independence (see previous point)

      In what sense does an oil industry in decline hit the rUK more than Scotland when Scotland has such huge reserves of renewable energy? ref: http://www.thenational.scot/news/report-finds-wind-and-solar-power-is-cutting-wholesale-cost-of-energy.8994

      Put these together, mix with the ongoing drip drip drip of a Tory Government selling off our public services to their mates on the cheap, cutting tax credits etc, and maybe it is clear that the reason why those who don't want Scotland to be independent keep telling themselves it's impossible is to try to hide from the fact that it may well be inevitable.

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    5. The 50-50 thing is statistical nonsense averaging in an extreme outlier. No is ahead, by around 49-45. Pretty much the same as eve of referendum polling.

      A hostile British government will deny you your referendum. And they'll have a legit reason - you just had one and lost.

      The spectacular decline of the oil industry blows an even greater hole in the budget of an independent Scotland.

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    6. No, Aldo, not good enough. You've been challenged on this and you failed to answer. Which is the "extreme outlier"? Is it the Ipsos-Mori poll, or the TNS poll? How can one of those two be an "extreme outlier" when they are both so similar?

      You're correct that the British government is hostile to Scotland, but almost everything else you said is nonsense.

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    7. The TNS poll showed a 5 point yes lead (DK included). This seems within a reasonable range of previous yes leads. The Ipsos Mori 9 point lead is totally out of kilter, with its massive yes lead even before DK are stripped out and a tiny number of DK (roughly half the usual amount). I think something went badly wrong with this poll. If you exclude it, it tips your 50-50 average in favour of no.

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    8. Oh, don't be so bloody silly. The TNS and Ipsos-Mori polls were comfortably within the margin of error of each other. You're drowning, Aldo.

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    9. Yes 53, No 44, DK 3 is not normal. We've seen nothing like it before or since in modern times. Yes above 50%, don't knows half the average, a lead bigger even than the dud ICM the weekend before the referendum and almost double the largest yes leads we get from other recent polling.

      Clearly a dud James, sorry. The lack of anonymity is probably something to do with it. Shy noes.

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    10. "We've seen nothing like it before or since in modern times."

      Apart from the TNS poll the following week, you mean. I know you hate the fact that the TNS poll exists, but it isn't going away, Aldo.

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    11. The TNS poll was 47-42, quite different.

      By the way doesn't it worry you that polling companies that offer anonymity and privacy show no ahead but the old steam driven companies show yes ahead? Face to face / telephone can lead to people saying anything to avoid awkwardness or embarrassment.

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    12. No, Aldo, the TNS poll was not "quite different". The difference between it and the Ipsos-Mori poll was statistically insignificant after Don't Knows are excluded. Your attempt to muddy the waters by factoring in Don't Knows is an utter nonsense, because the Curtice average you're trying (and failing) to discredit specifically excludes Don't Knows.

      "By the way doesn't it worry you that polling companies that offer anonymity and privacy show no ahead but the old steam driven companies show yes ahead?"

      Quite the reverse. I'd be much more worried if the Yes-friendly polls were the ones conducted among volunteer online polling panels, as was the case during the referendum. I suspect in your heart of hearts you must be deeply concerned that the position has suddenly (and inexplicably) flipped.

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  6. I see NatCen are now doing a UK EUref Poll of Polls.

    http://whatukthinks.org/eu/opinion-polls/poll-of-polls/

    Currently:

    54% Remain
    46% Leave

    Excluding DK

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    1. Seems like a good place to start from for "remain", considering the entire political and business establishment will be behind them vs Farage and BoJo.

      Has the SNP given any thought as to what happens if - more likely when -.the remain camp wins? Keeping in mind the SNP will have been part of "Better Together Europe", it seems kind of counter intuitive, having achieved that goal, to pursue separation from the UK and, by extension, from Europe.

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    2. Wouldn't it save time and effort to just have 'I AM A TROLL' tattooed on your forehead?

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    3. I said "Wouldn't it save time and effort to just have 'I AM A TROLL' tattooed on your forehead?"

      I'm happy to say it a third time if necessary.

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    4. Why is it trolling to point out the SNP's many contradictions?

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    5. And, right on cue, here comes the straw man. I would suggest making the tattoo very, very large.

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    6. Don't you think it's a contradiction? You spend months campaigning for togetherness and then switch back into sep mode straight afterwards. Isn't it possible people will see that as being a bit inconsistent? Don't you risk being left on the wrong side of the argument and the wrong side of history?

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    7. If I have to spoon-feed you, the trolling was this, Aldo : "and, by extension, from Europe".

      By the way, the SNP will not be part of any "Better Together" type campaign - they'll be steering well clear of any umbrella group that includes the Tories.

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  7. 8% and we know how precarious that could be!

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  8. I thought it was interesting that Canada has no Corporate Funding and limits individual donations.

    I also find it interesting that they have managed to avoid so many of the financial crises that have hit other countries.

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  9. I watched it on CBC as well - CTV got the results somewhat faster though.

    Canada - like the USA and most of Europe - count their ballots at the polling station. This enables them to get "projections for seats" (or at least who's ahead) in quickly, and gives everyone localised results.

    We knew that the Liberals would be the largest party after just over an hour of the polls closing in Atlantic Canada - without an exit poll. We'd still be waiting for the Sunderland result to declare at that point.

    This is something that I'd like to have in the UK - and hopefully could be implemented soon.

    Hopefully Trudeau won't back off on electoral reform - although I can see him proposing a referendum on it, with a poor alternative (like we had here).

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    1. I think he'll probably introduce AV. It sounds like that's what he favoured all along, but was hedging his bets in case he needed to make compromises. AV is a majoritarian system and would probably have produced an even bigger Liberal majority on Monday night.

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  10. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 21, 2015 at 9:51 PM

    It is noted the SNP will not commit themselves to raising extra tax revenue from the Scots to fund additional welfare to what they call the poor. What a bunch of scoundrals as Rabbi would say. And more older people are dying in Scotland due to cold weather and this after eight years of the Nat sis. But as the Nat sis would say the elderly voted NO so let them die in the multitudes. Freeze the old Unionist buggers.

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  11. If you currently look for the 'Scotland Office twitter' on google or click it here:

    https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/scotland-office

    On their actual page. It leads you here:

    https://twitter.com/scotlandoffice

    An account it seems they gave up for 'UK Government for Scotland' earlier, leaving it for someone else to use to interesting effect.

    LOL... but also creepy incompetence from the Tories.

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  12. The one good thing to come out of the Canadian Election is that the Liberals plan to withdraw Canadian support for the disastrous F-35 project. The Brit Nats aren't saying what the bill for their ambitions will be for that yet and if the Canadians withdraw then the Brit Nats will have an even bigger share of the escalating out of control Dev costs. It isn't just Trident that needs the plug pulled on it. Or are the Yanks going to ask the Chinese to bail them out on it like the Brits are getting the Chinese to do for the Brit Nuke Power Program etc.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 21, 2015 at 10:40 PM

      Really silly made up anti US GB comment get a life. You are going no where.

      Delete
  13. Well,all this apart it is interesting that there appears to be a global drift away from the neocon/neoliberal agenda engendered by Reagan,Thatcher and others around the globe.
    People are beginning to realise that it was just another whiz to con them into believing that greed is good which is code for taking from the poor to give to the rich.
    Unfortunately,Greater England's government is still welded to this ideology and will probably be the last in the developed world to relinquish it.
    Depends on the Chinese however.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 21, 2015 at 11:54 PM

      So what are they drifting towards?

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    2. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 1:25 AM

      Crofters porridge oats. Finlay Currie.

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    3. No. You'll choke down the Tories' cereal with the rest of us, troll.

      Delete
  14. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 7:45 PM

    Anon. I cannot afford cereal since the Tories and Nat sis came to power. Baked beans on toast for me.

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    1. Edinburgh Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 9:19 PM

      I can't afford to live in Morningside anymore...och, the housing bubble...that was THE life.

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    2. Aye, poor wee champagne socialists.

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    3. You'll eat your cereal and like it.

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  15. Edinburgh Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 7:48 PM

    Ach well...the final nail in the coffin for independence. The indy economics laid out by the nat sis has been shattered to bits:

    I expect a bunch of cybernats queuing with the "without oil Scotland's GDP per capita is same as rUKs"...bla bla bla.

    But here is the thing...Salmond's paper expected £7.9bn receipts from oil in 2016/17. Even with those receipts Scotland would have run a deficit. Now without those £7.9bn in receipts, how an earth would the finances of an independent Scotland be suistainable at all?

    We're clearly Better Together and some nat sis will have to eat humble pie.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    "North Sea tax revenues plummet to negative for the first time in sector's history..."
    Corporation tax and petroleum revenue tax effectively cost UK taxpayers £39m over the first six months of this financial year.

    North Sea tax receipts have plunged into the red for the first time in the sector’s history after the steep decline in global oil prices.

    HM Revenue and Customs figures show that offshore corporation tax receipts for April to September were only £203m, compared with a six-monthly peak of £3.3bn in 2011. Petroleum revenue taxes for those six months stood at -£242m, compared with periods where PRT raised £577m in a single month.

    The latest figures for the most important North Sea tax revenues – corporation tax and petroleum revenue tax – show the sector effectively cost the taxpayer £39m over the first six months of this financial year.

    Excluding other minor tax receipts, which will be calculated by the Treasury at the end of the financial year and may see a small overall surplus, the North Sea generated negative tax receipts from April to September after oil prices again crashed to as low as $43 (£28) a barrel.

    The new data has shattered the most recent official forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility, which had predicted in July the sector would generate £700m for the Treasury this year, and undermined even more optimistic predictions by the Scottish government.

    John McLaren, an economist and honorary professor at Adam Smith business school at Glasgow university, said: “It may be the first time there has been a negative tax take over a six-month period and means it will be very difficult to attain even that £700m figure, which itself is much revised down from a year ago.”

    McLaren added that the latest data reinforced the fact that this was “nearing the end of the North Sea as a source of revenue” for the government. “Really, its future importance is in maintaining economic activity and retaining jobs,” he said.

    The figures imply that the sector will generate modest tax receipts this year, only 12 months after the Scottish National party promised voters North Sea oil would help fund independence. Scottish public spending far exceeds its tax revenues, with spending about £1,300 per head greater than the UK average.

    The Scottish government’s independence white paper released in November 2013 claimed that oil revenues for Scotland – which has a 90% geographical share of North Sea receipts – could hit £7.9bn in the financial year 2016/17 alone. That figure was based on a $113-a-barrel oil price.

    But, in June this year, after the first oil price slump to $40 a barrel, the Scottish government admitted that tax revenues would fall sharply for 2015. Scottish ministers urged the UK government to cut taxes and levies, and increase tax allowances, to help it limp through the crisis.

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    1. We just need to dip into the oil fund. Westminster has one right?

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    2. I've just checked, Norway has coming up on a trillion$ one and the UK one is nothing. Zero, nada, jack shit. They've pissed the lot away.

      OMG. So all the oil money is gone? All of it? Christ on a bike.

      We need to get out of the UK. Now.

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    3. Nat sis can't answer questions. Nat sis can only blame Westminster.

      Still no answer as to how would Scotland pay for the deficit. FACT: It would need deeper cuts than the ones being carried out already by the Tories.

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    4. Eat your cereal.

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  16. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 7:58 PM

    Nat sis screwing our health service and police what pure incompetents. And they want to vote on purely English issues. So the next time the Nat sis want to split the Union then maybe the English, Welsh and NI will get a vote. I will start a campaign so every Brit gets a say. Here Here.

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  17. The union parliament ended tonight.

    No longer can I vote for an MP that might become a member of the cabinet or even Prime Minister of the UK. With EVEL, my MP can only be a second class back bencher.

    I will now vote Yes to Scottish independence.

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    1. A pleasure to have you on our side.

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  18. Did you vote no before?

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  19. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 10:18 PM

    Scottish Nat si Mp's say they will be second class however they are overpaid as they do not deal with the same workload as English Mp's. So a real reduction in the salaries off Scot, Irish and Welsh Mp's is totally justifiable.

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    1. Edinburgh Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 10:39 PM

      Hear hear, my friend.

      Delete
    2. Ah, the voice of red Morningside cries to be heard. You and the other two trolls are under the wrong bridge. Go eat your cereal somewhere else.

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    3. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 22, 2015 at 11:52 PM

      A days equal pay for a days equal work. Irish, Scots and Welsh Mp's do not deal with Health, Transport, Police. Their mailbags must be almost empty or they divert the mail back to their respective devolved buildings. It is obvious English Mp's must have a larger workload. Any decent Scottish Nat si leftie if any are left must recognise this.

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    4. Eat your cereal, you contradictory troll. Nazi leftie, indeed...

      Delete
  20. Today marks an historic event. For the very first time in history, Scotland's oil industry has entered tax negative equity. The state now spends more propping up the industry than it receives from it in tax.

    An absolutely staggering development and one I would have expected only to witness in old age - not as a handsome spritely gent in his early thirties.

    I feel a bit sorry for you lot. Just as you start getting somewhere, the economic rug is pulled from underneath you.

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  21. It is still the UK's Oil Industry, you dense twat.

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  22. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 23, 2015 at 12:07 AM

    Naw yer wrang the Nat sis hiv bin sayin fur decades its Scotland's ile. An if it wis the Scots would be livin in Utopia. Nae merr povurty and privatisation. AYE. Nae merr subsidy tae the Nat sis fae The Scottish Tory Bus Man. AYE

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  23. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 23, 2015 at 1:22 AM

    Scot Nat sis economics. You earn ten bob and spend thirteen bob. So who pays the difference and interest. Bob the English taxpayer.

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    1. Eat your cereal, Tory.

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  24. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 23, 2015 at 2:19 AM

    The SNP will split because the working class Labour people that joined them will wake up slowly and know they were conned by the Tartan Tories who are worse than the Tories.
    Socialism is not and has never been on the Nat si agenda. The Nat si elite are worse than the Tories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Eat your cereal, Tory.

      Delete
  25. Incidentally, I wonder how Labour, Lib and Con MPs, MSPs, councillors etc feel about the fact that they could never be more than a second class back bencher in Westminster.

    None will ever be anyone of importance in Westminster. Even if Labour managed to regain seats from the SNP it would be to sit in isolation, unable to form part of the main UK government. No English party would put a Scottish MP in a position of power only for them to be excluded from a multitude of debates under EVEL.

    No more Browns as PM.

    No more Alexanders as CSttT.

    No more Kennedy's as Lib Dem Leader....

    Why bother running as an MP?

    In contrast, in an independent Scotland...

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    1. Why would they be excluded from the debates?

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    2. Because that's the rule under EVEL.

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    3. No parliament can bind the hand of its successor. All a future majority of a different shade of blue needs to do, is alter the standing orders back and thus repeal the policy.

      For this parliament the Conservatives have reduced the risk of the official opposition getting its act together and voting with the SNP to actually oppose them on some handful of votes. It means that they have strengthened their own majority in those votes. But it may be Pyrrhic, as it can be seen as a snub to the Scots who are already restless.

      Once again we boil it all down to the West Lothian Question. The present devolution arrangement was not the correct one in the first place.It is not stable. There are two possibilities. Either a fully federal system is established quite quickly, with England getting its own Lander. Or we Scots leave. I favour the latter. But I cannot see why they are so bloody arrogant as to dismiss the former. What's next, are we to be subjected to the Black and Tans? Is it only gunmen who wake these complacent somnambulists?

      The measure yesterday was unnecessary, was partisan and was really just rubbing our noses in it.

      Roll on independence day, cos it just got nearer.

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  26. Not seeing it, James. According to the explanatory paper, the only elements that are restricted to English and Welsh MP's are the new Legislative Grand Committee stages, which are a vote.

    All the speaking stages remain noted as being for the Whole House of Commons.

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    1. No, even under the revised explanatory paper, Scottish MPs are banned from moving any motion or amendment, which effectively rules out Scottish frontbenchers (ie. the relevant Cabinet ministers) from having a meaningful role in committee debates. So Scottish Skier's point is sound enough.

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  27. Glasgow Working ClassOctober 23, 2015 at 10:53 PM

    The SNP are to blame for this bill. They said they would not vote on English only issues then they shifted. They lied when saying NHS issues in England could effect Scotland.

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    1. Eat your cereal, Tory.

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