Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Why a Wings party is probably a bad idea: Part Two

A kind of fever has swept through parts of the Yes movement over the last 48 hours.  A number of people who were clear-sighted about the risks of "tactical voting on the list" (sic) in 2011 and 2016 have been enthusiastically embracing the proposal for a Wings party, which looks set to make exactly the same "tactical voting" pitch that RISE did last time around.  I've even had one or two people huffily announce that they are unfollowing me on Twitter for simply pointing out that "tactical voting on the list" doesn't magically become any more viable just because we're talking about a blog-based party rather than a radical left party.

Stuart Campbell himself, of course, warned of the dangers of misguided "tactical voting" in the run-up to the 2016 election.  As I understand it, his explanation for changing his view comes in two parts.  Firstly, he thinks that the result of the 2016 election changes the equation, because it demonstrates more clearly than before that list votes for the SNP are largely "wasted".  And secondly, he believes the Wings party would be more mainstream and have much wider popular appeal than RISE or the Greens, and therefore sheer weight of numbers would ensure that vote-splitting isn't a problem, because the party would easily clear the de facto threshold of 5% or 6% for representation in each of the electoral regions it stands in.

The first point makes no sense at all, and the second point probably doesn't make much sense either.  I say "probably", because I do have a couple of caveats to place on my doubts.  There's a story in The National today based on a claim from an SNP "insider" that Alex Salmond is behind the plans for a Wings party.  (The fact that something as paranoid-sounding as that is being said in private raises troubling questions about the extent to which the current SNP leadership have cast their popular former leader - who remains entirely innocent in the eyes of the law - out into the cold.)  Stuart Campbell has strenuously denied the claim.  However, it wouldn't be the first time in history that a denied story has turned out to have a grain of truth in it, so let's suppose for the sake of argument that Alex Salmond either led the Wings party or was one of its leading candidates.  Would that make a difference?  Of course it would.  Alex Salmond is a hero for a huge number of independence supporters (myself included) and it's not at all difficult to imagine a new party in which he takes an active role securing a very healthy haul of list seats.  But my question is this: in the unlikely event that Alex Salmond was looking outside the SNP for a route back into politics, does it seem plausible that he would choose the Wings party as his vehicle?  I think he'd be more likely (and it would make more electoral sense) to build a new party around his own personal 'brand'.  Theoretically, it's possible that he might be allowing someone else to make the running until legal proceedings against him are resolved one way or another.  But my guess is that the SNP "insider" is probably just letting their imagination run away with them.

My second caveat is that there is at least one well-known international precedent for what Wings may be attempting to do.  The Five Star Movement, which is currently the senior partner in the Italian coalition government, essentially started life as a blog.  But there are a couple of key differences between Wings Over Scotland and the Beppe Grillo blog.  The latter is written by a hugely familiar TV celebrity, and put forward a policy prospectus that was radically different from anything the existing parties had to offer.  What is the gap in the market that a Wings party would be filling?  As far as I can see it would basically be the SNP without gender self-ID and with more urgency on the independence issue.  I'm not convinced those points of distinctiveness are sufficient to capture the public's imagination and to sweep the board on the list vote - or at least not without the backing of a public figure of Alex Salmond's stature (and to be honest that means Alex Salmond himself, because off the top of my head I can't think of any other public figure who would have the same effect).

Which takes me back to where I came in - the likelihood is that a Wings party would secure less than 5% of the vote in each electoral region, which means that any votes it does manage to take away from the SNP and the Greens would simply reduce the overall number of pro-indy seats in the Scottish Parliament.  People struggle with this idea, but it's entirely conceivable that moderate success for the Wings party (by which I mean something like 3% of the list vote) could reduce the chances of retaining the pro-independence majority in Holyrood that we've had since 2011.

When I put that point to Stuart Campbell directly, he said that the SNP couldn't be harmed because they hardly had any list seats to lose (they have four at the moment).  That's a sort of "truthy" observation that is going to sound like a killer point to people who don't really understand the voting system - and it therefore worries me greatly.  I've been trying to think of a helpful analogy, and the best one I can come up with is this: saying that the SNP only have four list seats to lose is a bit like saying that Bill Gates only has $4.50 to lose because that's what he currently has in his pocket.  List seats are distributed in a compensatory way to bring a party's overall representation in parliament up to roughly the level of its regional list vote.  If the SNP had won fewer constituency seats in 2016, they would have won more list seats to compensate for that.  So in fact the SNP could potentially lose up to dozens of their current seats on the list ballot next time around, because if the first-past-the-post element doesn't go their way to the same extent as in 2016, they would be relying on list votes to hold on to a healthy level of representation in parliament.

To see the truth of what I'm saying, you only need to look at the result of the 2011 election - which was, after all, the only occasion to date that the SNP have won an overall majority, and one of only two occasions to date that a pro-independence majority has been secured.  How many list seats did the SNP win?  Sixteen.  I'll say that again: sixteen.  If they hadn't won at least twelve of those, there wouldn't have been an SNP majority.  And if the SNP, Greens and Margo MacDonald between them hadn't won at least eleven list seats, there wouldn't have been a pro-independence majority at all.  Remember that, and in particular remember it the next time someone tells you the SNP don't need any list votes.

It's perfectly possible that 2021 could produce another 2011-style result, with the SNP taking fewer constituencies than in 2016 despite its popular vote holding up, which would make the result on the list absolutely critical.  Some of the seats that the Tories took at Westminster in 2017 are still held by the SNP in Holyrood, so it's not hard to see where the constituency losses might occur if the Tories are riding high in eighteen months' time - and it's anyone's guess whether they will be, because much depends on whether Boris Johnson delivers Brexit on time and thus wins back the Tory votes lost to the Brexit Party in May's Euro election.

And it's also important not to lose sight of the worst-case scenario.  What if the wheels come off and there is no chance at all of a pro-indy majority?  What if there's a 2007-style result with a clear unionist majority in parliament, but there's still a chance of maintaining a minority SNP government?  Would we really want to play silly buggers on the list, and make it easier for some sort of unionist coalition government to be cobbled together?  Stuart's response to that scenario is "if that happens we're all screwed anyway", but I just don't take that 'win or bust' approach to life or to politics.  A setback is a point on a spectrum, and it's important to keep the indy flame burning as brightly as possible.

Some have suggested that the threat of a Wings party might be a good thing if it helps the SNP leadership find a greater sense of urgency on independence, and actually I entirely accept that.  But if the threat is actually carried through, then I fear that for some of the reasons George Kerevan outlined yesterday, it's bound to be a lose/lose for all concerned.

117 comments:

  1. This is only an issue if there isn't an independence referendum before 2021 - i.e. the Scottish Government allow the existing mandate to run out. I cannot see them doing that for two reasons.

    For one, the new UK Government is a very different beast from the Cameron & May cabinets. They were Tories, true, but they were also British Nationalists: they cared about the UK, & indy represented an existential crisis for them, even as they did the anti-Scottish rhetoric in 2015. Johnson & his fellow travelers don't care about the UK at all, & the fact they leaned the most into the "Subsidy Junkies" myth led to their base either sanguine or actively supportive of indy. Working too hard to keep Scotland would antagonise the people they've sold those lies to, & that means losing votes, which means letting the Pro-EU British Nationalists back in. I genuinely think Johnson & co will "let" Scotland go - but not before spinning it in some way to make them look good.

    The second reason is much more tragic: I don't think their voters would forgive them. After the mass desertion from the Libs and Labour after they betrayed their manifesto commitments, the SNP would be idiots to let that happen to them. And don't think they wouldn't: we saw a taste of it in 2017, where low SNP support let several Unionists in. Many indy supporters will just question the point in voting for a party that let a triple-lock mandate go, the same way they started questioning voting for a Labour party that started illegal wars, brought in tuition fees, & was "intensely relaxed" about the "filthy rich."

    If the next Scottish Parliament elections are being fought from inside the UK, & we haven't already had indyref, we're already in deep trouble.

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    1. I agree with this, most especially your 2nd point. The SNP vote will totally collapse if there's no indy ref called before 2021. Yes voters will have lost faith in them by then. Use it or lose it time regarding mandates.

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    2. Thanks for that Taranaich, save me the trouble.

      If the SNP betray theor very clear mandates and more tahn that, multiple manifesto pledges to "give Scotland a Choice" over Brexit, then I personally would be looking for a proper pukka Independence Party to vote for, and have posted this elsewhere including The National.

      Because if the SNP don't keep their most important promises. how on earth could they ever be trusted ever again?

      The only thing is, if we get to 2021 without a Ref and Scotland has indeed been dragged out of the EU against our will, it's not only the List vote the SNP will lose from me, I'll be looking for a genuine Independence party for the Constituency vote, and both Rise and Greens are far too far to the left for me.

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    3. That last was me, Yesindyref2, won't take my wordpress sign in, and I'm not doing flaming google accounts and getting spammed all over the place.

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  2. 2 points there James,

    1) You argue that If unionists win substantially more 'local' seats the 'list' votes could be needed to make up the numbers.

    That may or may not be a future scenario, but not like you to leave it there with just some speculation/opinion/handwaving.

    We respect you for your analysis as well, so how about illustrating with a range of representative example numbers?

    My 'feeling' is that the potential gains are far more significant than the possible losses, but now I am the one speculating on an opinion with no data. ;-)

    We would all lap it up if you worked your usual statistcical magic
    and proved that it was always a lose lose.

    ;-)

    2) Did you see this Comres poll yet ? ;-)
    "ComRes Published Voting Intention"
    https://www.comresglobal.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/The-Telegraph_August-2019-Tables.pdf

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    1. "That may or may not be a future scenario, but not like you to leave it there with just some speculation/opinion/handwaving."

      Oh for heaven's sake, I used the ACTUAL RESULT from 2011 as my example, which I would have thought is far more use to people than any speculative hypothetical result. But OK, if that's what you want, here goes.

      Scenario A (without Wings party):

      Constituency vote -

      SNP 37%
      Conservatives 27%
      Labour 24%
      Liberal Democrats 9%

      Regional list ballot -

      SNP 32%
      Conservatives 25%
      Labour 22%
      Greens 8%
      Liberal Democrats 5%
      Brexit Party 4%

      Seats -

      SNP 54
      Conservatives 33
      Labour 28
      Greens 9
      Liberal Democrats 5

      Scenario B (with Wings taking 3% of the list vote away from the SNP):

      Constituency vote -

      SNP 37%
      Conservatives 27%
      Labour 24%
      Liberal Democrats 9%

      Regional list vote -

      SNP 29%
      Conservatives 25%
      Labour 22%
      Greens 8%
      Liberal Democrats 5%
      Brexit Party 4%
      Wings 3%

      Seats -

      SNP 52
      Conservatives 34
      Labour 29
      Greens 9
      Liberal Democrats 5

      As you can see, the intervention of Wings means there are two fewer pro-indy seats than there otherwise would be. The beneficiaries are the Tories and Labour, who each take one seat extra.

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    2. ...and it makes zero difference to anything, because even in your Scenario A case WE DON'T HAVE A PRO-INDY MAJORITY.

      54+9 < 65.

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    3. And lastly, btw, if I thought we couldn't do considerably better than 3% I wouldn't be bothering at all.

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    4. Indeed: that's the main point of difference between us - I very much doubt you'd be topping 5% of the vote. Oh, and the 63 seats in Scenario A is very close to a majority - it's certainly an illustration of how crucial seats could be lost.

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    5. [sniff] I didn't expect you to get all exasperated at a simple inquiry for a fuller treatment!

      It would be more useful, for example, for us to have some numerical basis for estimating where the 'inflecton point' is where gaining more wings votes moves from detracting from total Indy wins to gaining, within the likely problem space.

      From the single datapoint of your 'Lose' submission one might infer that point may exist somewhere above 3% of the vote.

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    6. Oh well, if we're *very close* to a majority that's basically the same as winning 🙄

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    7. Let me get this straight - you're saying that if we're that close to a majority, you don't care about losing the pro-indy side two seats? This is a very dangerous game to be playing.

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    8. What I'm saying is that I'm bemused why you're shitting so very hard on the idea at this early stage when your argument is "if you do this we might get 61 indy seats (ie losing) instead of 63 seats (also losing)". Frankly I'm more than willing to risk a marginally worse level of defeat for the possibility of a win.

      But I'm perfectly happy to concede that you might be right and I might be wrong about the potential level of support we might get. If further polling shows it's a total non-starter, it won't happen, and no harm will be done. I'm happy to wait until we find out, you're apparently determined to kill it before birth no matter what its potential might be.

      And as someone noted on Twitter - the only reason for Nats to be upset about this idea is if they think the Infallible Leader's promise that she'll deliver a second indyref before 2021 is bullshit. If she does deliver one the Wings Party won't happen so again there's no issue.

      It's notable, I think, that you've now twice declined to address the elephant in the room in the form of the Salmond trial.

      But the bottom line is I just don't see the merit in the full-blown "WE'RE ALL DOOOOOMED!" approach at this stage in proceedings. And since I have a poker game to go to, I'll leave it there.

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    9. First of all, I've offered you a hard example (and it is only one example of many that are possible) of a competitive election result, where a pro-indy majority is right in the balance and a Wings intervention could deprive the pro-indy side of two crucial seats, and your reaction to that is basically "who cares?" I would guess that at least some readers will be concerned about that sort of reckless attitude.

      And actually I can't think of a better example of a "WE'RE ALL DOOMED!" attitude than to look at polling suggesting that we're heading for a pro-indy majority, but say "it must be misleading" and have a great panic about what we can do to solve a problem that as yet does not actually exist.

      I'm unclear on exactly what point you're making about the legal proceedings against Alex Salmond - which I mentioned, unprompted, in the blogpost.

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    10. This is Yesindyref2 (even though I'm signed into wordpress have to use anonymous).

      Nice to be able to comment in real time though, been put into "moderation" which means not appearing for 48 hours on Wings because the Rev is too lazy to be bothered going through that queue, and bans people for disagreeing with him (he knows what he is and it starts with "D" and ends in "k").

      Anyways, the point is that this Wings party (better name needed), won't stand if the SNP have an Indy Ref before 2021, and if they don't have an Indy Ref 2 before 2021 they will be liars, cheats and totally untrustworthy if Scotland has meanwhile been dragged out of the EU without a choice, contrary to their many manifesto promises and all the hot air from the Westminster crowd, I'm very far from being the only person who would think that the SNP could never be trusted again even with a penny in the hand of a baby in a pram, so the 5% threshold is almost certain to be reached in the event that tthe party actually stands at all.

      In fact in that case, it's not a complementary party would be needed, it's a total replacement party.

      Hopefully the SNP will hold Indy Ref 2, with or without Westminster, and face a court challenge if needed so none of this will be neccessary. But blind following of the SNP if they've lied to keep themelves in comfy positions in a useless powerless Government, is not something I'd be doing.

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    11. Popcorn stuff for a no voter like me, has the rev misjudged this as badly as his Amiga Turrican review?

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    12. Anon-whose-comment-I've-just-deleted: honestly, mate, just go away. You may not have the courage to put a name to your poison, but your writing style sticks out an absolute mile. I made clear to you on the previous thread that you were no longer welcome to post here, and for the avoidance of doubt, I actually meant it. You've been posting this stuff occasionally for years, I recognise it from ages ago. You seem weirdly obsessed with whingeing about me in great detail - is it going to be my personal hygiene next? Are my toenails too long?

      As the yoof used to say when I was a yoof myself: get a life.

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    13. Mr Campbell, give it up, no use greating over spilt milk, if this flops,which there is a very good chance it will, do you want to be the man that sank the good ship indie? Maybe you should join the SNP and change it from the inside, given the lack of any divergent policy. Keep to what your good at and don't believe your hype.

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  3. I, for one, hope it is true as nothing would please me more than to see Alex back at the helm again as Nichola Sturgeon is leading us to a catastrophic outcome whereby we will lose our very nationhood.

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  4. I, for one, hope that it is true, as nothing would please me more than to see Alex back at the helm again to prevent Nicola Sturgeon leading us to a catastrophic outcome that would kill independence stone dead and end our nationhood forever.

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    1. It's regionalist ideology that has the best chance of ending our nationhood forever.

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  5. I address most of this in today's Wings post.

    The fact is, 2011 isn't coming back again. The SNP haven't hit 44% in polling for the list since 2016, and they tend to underperform their polls.

    I also did the numbers for a variety of scenarios, with and without the SNP losing significant numbers of constituency seats, and in every case a Wings party would substantially increase pro-indy MSPs. If you can give me a scenario, with actual numbers, where it doesn't, I'm all ears.

    (Your other key mistake in raising 2011 is that in 2011 any list votes the SNP lost went to Unionist parties or the Greens, who picked up a feeble 87K votes, not a serious pro-indy party capable of getting decent numbers. Wings might or might not be capable of doing that, but you're doggedly refusing to even consider that a brand recognised by more than half of Scots and thought positively of by a fifth of Yes voters could have a chance.)

    You're also insisting on seeing this through a frame of keeping the SNP in power, rather than securing independence. The SNP in power with 49 seats (and not enough Greens to get to a majority) is fuck-all use to me. Independence or bust.

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    1. "The fact is, 2011 isn't coming back again. The SNP haven't hit 44% in polling for the list since 2016, and they tend to underperform their polls."

      Actually, current polling shows that we're on course to retain the pro-independence majority, and yet you say that a Wings party is needed to rescue the pro-independence majority. So essentially you're saying that one aspect of current polling can be assumed to be misleading but that another aspect of it must be treated as gospel. That's an obvious case of trying to have your cake and eat it.

      "Wings might or might not be capable of doing that, but you're doggedly refusing to even consider that a brand recognised by more than half of Scots and thought positively of by a fifth of Yes voters could have a chance."

      I addressed that point directly in my previous post. You're placing too much store on the results of your own Panelbase polling, which is bound to overstate the awareness of political blogs, because politically-engaged people are disproportionately likely to join volunteer online polling panels like Panelbase's. You'd need to do some telephone polling to know what the real position is.

      "The SNP in power with 49 seats (and not enough Greens to get to a majority) is fuck-all use to me. Independence or bust."

      It may not be any use to you, but it's a statement of the blindingly obvious that having a pro-independence government is much better for the cause of independence than having a unionist government.

      For the avoidance of doubt, I wrote this blogpost before I saw your latest post, but there are quite a few points in your post that I would take issue with.

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    2. "current polling shows that we're on course to retain the pro-independence majority,"

      Eh? Bollocks it does. Seats are meant to reflect the regional vote, and the combined regional vote polling for the pro-indy parties has been stuck at around 45% for ever.

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    3. You're perfectly correct about polling-company samples. We have plenty of time for more research on likely support levels.

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    4. And that (roughly) 45% currently translates into a pro-indy majority for a number of technical reasons that we can discuss if you want. There's no such thing as a perfectly proprtional system, and the Holyrood system is less perfect than some.

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    5. The fact that it did in 2016 doesn't mean it would in 2021. But in any event Salmond trial

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    6. Wow, weird bit of auto-censorship there.

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    7. I don't have any auto-censorship programmed, if that's what you mean. There may be something built into the Blogger commenting system, I don't know.

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    8. I thought the "auto" fairly clearly implied it was a built-in thing.

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  6. Oh, and to reiterate what I've told the press: Alex Salmond is nothing to do with my hypothetical party. But since you bring him up, if you think his trial next year - whatever its outcome - is going to make SNP support go in any direction but down, I've got a bridge to sell you. Don't bet your house on a horse with a gammy leg.

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    1. OK, that clears up one of my points of uncertainty - without a public figure of that kind of stature, I think a Wings party is going to struggle on the list.

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    2. You never know, Sillars or McAskill might be looking for a storm in a port as usual ...

      Yesindyref2

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    3. i see no reason that a positive outcome for Salmond would make SNP support go down. It would confirm (whether rationally or not) the beliefs of quite a few people that the who thing was a stitch-up and might even increase SNP support. The entire issue of the SNP whipping out all mention of Salmond is limited to a relatively small number of people, like those of us who post here and I don't know of any other reason why it would affect the SNP negatively. A guilty would be a whole different situation.

      As far as a 'Wings' party, I see that as having a similar problem. True more people know about WoS than only hardcore anaracs but to win an election the Wings following, impressive as it is for a blog, just isn't big enough. I do think there would be a serious threat of vote splitting, and how the 2021 election turns out could be very important. As James says, too important to play silly buggers with.

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    4. Gentlemen, If I might say, I think you are looking at this from the wrong angle.

      There is merit in this concept if it is applied against the parties who support the union.

      If folks can be motivated to form Liberal, Labor and even Conservative parties for independence, these would be very promising vehicles which could conceivably get us all over the line, by splitting the unionist voting public.

      A lot of these folks will never vote for the SNP, and why should they have to? Ditto for the Green Party. But they will still be our fellow Scots. They should not be required to abandon their political homes for want of a single policy. After all, we are going to need them to put their hands to the tiller as well, when we are independent. I would rather they were willing hands.

      On the other hand, it will be a lot more difficult if we're still re-fighting the results of the independence referendum, ten years from now.

      The SNP is bound to collapse post independence as its own internal contradictions will see it explode in all directions, once its job is seen to be done. We should be developing these mature political homes even now.

      They will all be needed later, as the monolithic SNP weakens and fades away - as it should do, when its purpose has been served.

      In many ways, it could be said that this strategy would be the missing piece of the puzzle we have all been searching for, to seal this deal.

      My thanks to both Messrs Kelly and Campbell, for the opportunity to address this issue.

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    5. There is also no getting away from the simple fact (read his blog to confirm) that Stu Campbell has tied his party to fighting trans rights. Now how that might work out in an election, I frankly don't know, because there are people who agree with him. But I'm not sure it is a great basis for forming a new party.

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    6. I think it best Rev Stu and JK avoid commenting in public. There are going to be plenty of arseholes from MSM reading this, just waiting for some misguided comment to pounce upon.

      Both you guys are important to "us little folk" and it will be a shame if something trivial is spun out of nothing.
      "Once in a generation" anyone?

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    7. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    8. As a woman, a feminist and a lesbian, I can assure you, Stu, that attacking the rights of transgender people is not defending my rights, however much you may claim that.

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  7. I am not going to argue the maths of this, because I can see that trying to tactically vote based on the likely success of SNP, or a "Wings Party", or a pro-Indy majority is dependent on knowing what millions of people will do in advance and being able to compute that. Very hard, so people should vote on principle.

    What I *will" say is that there is definitely still room for such a party if the SNP have not delivered indyref 2 by 2021, as per the current pledge.

    But people should only vote for that party if they want to express displeasure with the handling of that as a point of principle.

    I daresay some would scold about patience etc, but the point is it's up to the individual voter to decide if they are happy enough with the pace of change.

    In such a scenario, I would certainly consider voting for a party stressing the urgent need for independence and would consider the constituency vote for the SNP to be the more "tactical" of the two.

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  8. As it stands, based on comparable time frames, the SNP are polling way better right now than they were ahead of 2011 and measurably better than pre-2016. A simple correlation would project a higher vote share and greater number of seats in 2021.

    Of course that's not how things work, but I don't understand why some suggest current SNP mid-term polling is bad.

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    1. " the SNP are polling way better right now than they were ahead of 2011 and measurably better than pre-2016"

      That simply isn't true. In the run-up to the 2016 election the SNP were regularly polling in the 50s for the constituency vote, and in February even hit 60%. They're currently on 38%.

      http://whatscotlandthinks.org/questions/how-would-you-use-your-constituency-vote-in-a-scottish-parliament-election#table

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  9. Unelected leader seeks to suspend parliament and hand himself emergency executive powers after intentionally creating a national crisis.

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/sweeping-powers-to-impose-curfews-and-alter-the-law-under-no-deal-brexit-llx3t3v7v

    Sweeping powers to impose curfews and alter the law under no-deal Brexit

    This sounds familiar.

    #Dictatorships101

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  10. From the perspective of maximising support for independence within Holyrood, I think a Wings party could be a good idea.
    The worst case scenario is that Wings poll poorly and don't gain any seats (or fewer than the SNP would have received had every one of those voters voted SNP). This would be like what has happened with the Change party down south and is a possibility. But if this happened, I'm sure Rev Stu would not contest any other votes. This means one bad election (although, I'm not convinced that this would make too much difference, as a Wings party that failed to win seats couldn't have taken that many votes away from the SNP, but I appreciate that even 2 or 3 seats can sway the parliament).
    But if Wings did poll strongly, then it could massively increase support for independence.
    My fear is that the British parties may decide to field joint candidates for constituency votes, and run separately for list seats, which would maximise their support. In that circumstance, we would need a Wings party (or something like it). I think, if the good Rev wants to do the work, we let him. Maybe its because I'm a fan, but I can't think of too many people who would be able to do a better job than him.
    I vote SNP because I support independence. If a referendum on independence wasn't held before 2021, then the best way for me to show support for independence would be to vote Wings.
    It could be a great thing for the Scottish Greens too. If there was a popular Wings party, then SNP supporters could view a list vote for the party as meaningless, due to the sheer number of voters committing to Wings. Not everyone who votes SNP would vote Wings, so I could see those people who saw a 2nd SNP vote as a waste, voting Green instead, allowing them to pick up more seats.

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  11. I am not sure why Stuart Campbell claims that people, and SNP voters in particular, 'would normally be highly resistant to giving their regional vote to minor parties like the Greens or RISE or Solidarity'. (As per his latest post on WoS).

    Consider for example the case of 2003. In the Holyrood elections of that year, the Green and the SSP got 6.9% and 6.7% on the list vote nationally, electing 6 and 5 MSPs each. The SSP topped 5% in 5 separate regions. The smaller parties benefited from a backlash against Labour's unpopular war in Iraq, and the SNP's lack of direction under John Swinney.

    It was only following the split in the SSP, when those voters went back to the SNP, that the SNP won its first national election.
    I am not sure why this historical track record, which is not that long ago, should be dismissed in favour of a poll which says only that people like reading Wings the blog. The same circumstances may well repeat themselves in 2021 if there is widespread discontent at Brexit, but Sturgeon has not held another independence referendum.

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    1. (1) It's not 2003 any more.

      (2) A party getting 7% of the list vote in fact proves pretty comprehensively that people are resistant to voting for them.

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    2. So if Wings got 7% of the list vote you would be disappointed? What % would you consider a good showing for the putative new party?

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    3. To have a chance of being seriously effective, at least twice that.

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  12. The outcome of the Alex Salmond case will have no effect on anything.

    While a guilty vote might be expected to negatively impact on those that specifically support independence 'Coz Alex Salmond', as such people don't exist (ok, there's maybe 3 or something), nothing will happen.

    If it turned out that Mi5 had organised the whole thing, well that could increase the Yes vote, but that would't be directly related to the verdict itself, but the circumstances.

    If he was still FM and leading a Yes campaign, the case could have a negative impact, but only if he didn't step aside until it was resolved and/or the SNP were seen to be covering things up.

    The recent lib dem surge wasn't a Cyril Smith bounce. It's just not how these things work.

    Jeez, Trump even 'won' in the USA.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Boy are YOU ever in for a nasty shock.

      Delete
    2. Maybe you need a chill pill in that milk of yours. Keep to your blog but l'll leave a new party for people with a substantive new policy direction once we're over this hurdle. You would be joining the SNP given your lack of substance in your policys.

      Delete
  13. We’re really wasting our energy fretting about a ‘maybe’ scenario in great detail. If we haven’t had a new ref by the time our next Holyrood election comes along then we’ve had ‘another’ material change in circumstance and clearly there should be options considered. It is of course possible that we’ve already had our last Holyrood election because dictator because brexit.

    ReplyDelete
  14. All good points, James. But there's one problem: the term "pro-independence majority". On present showing, the SNP ain't it, regardless of how many seats they may win.

    ReplyDelete
  15. The 'golden age' continues to get underway.

    https://twitter.com/faisalislam/status/1161583201963393024

    Gilt curve inverted Klaxon... first time since the financial crisis —-

    In English, UK Government can currently borrow from markets more cheaply over a decade than it can over 3 months or two years... Rare - normally signals market expectation of weak growth/ recession.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Although to be fair this has also happened to the German and USA guilt curves as well a general flattening of curves across markets. Less to do with Brexit more a sign worries regarding the general slowdown of the global economy.

      Delete
    2. Sure, but the global slowdown is an excellent reason to delay and/or cancel brexit until things improve.

      If the world economy situation is going to hit the UK hard, it's madness to add brexit to that. If the world was booming, brexit would be much easier. A voluntary crash out hard brexit during a global downturn is nuts.

      Delete
  16. I'm with you on this one James. I can't imagine for a minute that a new Wings Party would achieve 5% of the popular vote but, unfortunately, Rev Stu has developed a rather high opinion of himself. He has a very loyal band of contributors (around 3000) who are happy to feed his ego but has a tendency to forget that most people who visit his site aren't ardent supporters of WoS(i.e.- they are just visitors).

    By the way, be careful he doesn't block you. He does not like anybody (even Independence supporters) who takes him to task or disagrees with him. He's a good blogger but would make a terrible Party Leader.



    ReplyDelete
  17. Another day, another step towards British fascism.

    First they came for the migrants...
    Then they came for the 'collaborators'...

    https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-eu/collaborators-are-undermining-britains-brexit-bet-pm-says-idUKKCN1V323B

    'Collaborators' are undermining Britain's Brexit bet, PM says

    ReplyDelete
  18. One last point on this. The Brexit Party formed about 10 minutes ago, on a single-issue manifesto, in a country that voted almost 2:1 Remain, where they have basically zero presence of any kind, and are already on 7% in Scottish Parliament polling.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brexit is just the new name for the Popular Front of Farage party, which has been around for a while (formerly UKIP) and has quite a loyal following.

      If he left Brexit and set the whole thing up in a new name, the voters would all transfer again; assuming that is the BBC etc give him his usual wall to wall publicity.

      Delete
    2. UKIP never got anywhere near 7% in a Scottish election. They got 2% of the list vote in 2016.

      Delete
    3. Brexit have never had 7% in a Scottish election.

      UKIP were polling up to 8% for Holyrood in e.g. 2014 ahead of the EU elections. They won 10.5% in the end for the latter (admittedly on a low turnout) and gave Scotland Coburn + a beamer.

      Anyway, I'm not disputing a party can't form suddenly and win votes, just that the Brexit party isn't a good example of this.

      We've been subjected to enough images of Coburn and Farage as best pals on BBC shortbread over the years.

      Delete
    4. I thought 7% meant people were highly resistant to voting for you?

      Delete
    5. European elections are a totally different kettle of sausages. TBP are polling that for HOLYROOD elections. It's clearly not correct to say it's just a transfer of the UKIP support, because it's several times higher than UKIP ever polled for Holyrood.

      Delete
    6. UKIP were polling up to 8% for Holyrood in 2014, and hit averages of 6-7%, albeit relatively briefly.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Scottish_Parliament_election

      Brexit have hit around 8% now for Holyrood on average, so a tad higher, but just as briefly. So far at least.

      Delete
    7. Interestingly, that graph shows how labour overtook the SNP for the regional list for a while in 2014 (even as the Yes vote was climbing steadily).

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Scottish_Parliament_election#Opinion_polling

      That's about the same stage of the electoral cycle that we are at now, although this time the SNP are doing a lot better (and Yes is much higher too).

      Delete
  19. Ive been following this debate with interest. I'm saying on the fence at the moment - cos it's 2019 and not 2021! I can see the potential benefits and risks - what noone on either side can do is predict the eventual level of SNP/Green support and so it will come down to stick or twist.

    I do think there is a potential sizeable voter base to attract here - the more radical, "hard-yessers" who wanted to fight again yesterday. It's democratic and healthy to provide a choice, and every potential list seat lost (if their popularity dips) will almost certainly be replaced by a list seat. If the SNP insist on contiuning down the gradualist road (beyond 2020), then it's only right that those who want more action, more inyerface confrontation have the chance to be represented also.

    Is securing an indy majority crucial? Well, yes and no. yes in the short term, but longer term we will be sink anyway. Thos debate does provide the SNP and SG with a timely wakeup call and (more satisfying) it has put the Britnats into panic. What's not to like.

    I would ot linke a name to WoS (even if Stu/WoS is the driver) - too easy a target. Something snappy (like the Brexit Party). eg. YES Scotland or the Scottish Independence Paryt may attract a fair few voters. Heck, if you called it the "Get rid of Murdo Fraser Party", you may even get a majority of list seats.

    Reps? Well you really have to bring a few popular figures like Lesley Riddoch and also the harder, shouty boat-rockers on board. The feather rufflers. Tommy Sheridan comes immediately to mind. :)

    ReplyDelete
  20. There is no way out of the backstop.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-49348062

    Brexit: No chance of US trade deal if Irish accord hit - Pelosi

    A US-UK trade deal will not get through Congress if Brexit undermines the Good Friday Agreement, the Speaker of the US House of Representatives has said.

    The ridiculous thing is that the N. Irish want the backstop; the vote to Remain. The English electorate are cool with it, as are the Scots and (presumably the welsh). Yet the UK is going to crash out of the EU, ruining its economy over it?

    A wise English nationalist would dump N. Ireland (and Scotland) if they really desire brexit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Does that mean there are stupid English Nationalists who would not agree with such a wise jock/paddysmarterse as yourself?
      Looks like Bercow has taken a personal decision to scupper brexit and the majority vote. He is supposed to be neutral.
      Pelosi is just pandering to sectarian Irish American bigoted Catholics. I think I mentioned before that the EU is not mentioned in the Belfast Agreement.

      Delete
    2. You have clearly never read the GFA. The EU is mentioned at various points.

      Delete
    3. It is the Belfast Agreement. It is on the British Gov Website. Not the Irish Catholic propaganda.

      Delete
    4. It's the Northern Ireland Peace Agreement / Good Friday Agreement as per the official version lodged with the United Nations.

      https://peacemaker.un.org/uk-ireland-good-friday98

      You can see they've even called it that in the url.

      Delete
  21. Sorry! You didn't even come close to convincing me. I wouldn't give the loony left ( including the greens). I would along with many others support a new left of centre Independence focused party. I think the comparison to the RISE attempt very fragile and difficult to justify.
    We should at least target those regions in which the SNP dominate the vote. Stopping unionists has merit and the system does enable their survival.

    I was very disappointed with your lack of rationale arguement.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Horses for courses, Julia: you do the rationale arguement, I'll do the spelling.

      Delete
    2. Young James I attended a mince eating school where spelling was not as important as the dinner school. Yet a lot made good of themselves and served their communities.

      Delete
  22. It's 50th anniversary of the beginning of the Troubles and England seems determined to restart them.

    Any violence and the blood is on leave's hands.

    The people of N. Ireland voted in a landslide for Remain. Let them Remain and live in peace.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ach well Skier blood has always flowed since the Catholic fascist mob were formed. No opposition has been untouched by their hand. Leave will mean leave and the mob weakened. Tony Blair will not save you.

      Delete
    2. British terrorists were just as bad. They bombed innocent people in the Republic, including Dublin, as well as in the North.

      Delete
    3. You know that one of the worst atrocities of the troubles was the coordinated mass murder of 33 people + an unborn baby in Dublin/Monaghan by British unionists?

      Not only that, but the evidence points the British state supporting the bombers, meaning the UK bombed another European country and committed mass murder of its citizens.

      https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/government-presses-for-action-over-dublin-monaghan-bombings-1.3895839

      Government presses for action over Dublin-Monaghan bombings

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dublin_and_Monaghan_bombings

      It's funny how the brits have selective memories when it comes to who was doing the terrorist bombing during the troubles.

      Delete
    4. And let's not forget the time British unionists bombed Glasgow.

      Not far from where my father's family lived at the time.

      Delete
    5. Sorry can you show the evidence? That article shows no such evidence

      Delete
    6. British unionists have claimed responsibility for both bomb attacks, i.e. those on Scotland and the Irish republic.

      The UVF are the armed terrorist wing of the current UK government coalition.

      As for the bombings in Ireland, the close collaboration between British security forces and unionist terrorists is well established. For the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, inquiries are awaiting the British government to provide documentation. If it does not do so, it must be guilty of direct involvement (rather than indirectly guilty, which is already established).

      You can start here:

      https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/britains-secret-terror-deals-truly-disturbing-bbc-panorama-allegations-of-collusion-must-be-fully-investigated-says-amnesty-international-31261593.html

      Britain's Secret Terror Deals: 'Truly disturbing' BBC Panorama allegations of collusion must be fully investigated, says Amnesty International

      'We’re not talking about a security policy we’re talking about a murder policy'

      And really you live in a world of delusion if you believe it's not the case. Britain has blood on it's hands all over the world, notably in former colonies such as Ireland. Jeez, it burnt, killed and raped its way through Ireland in living memory.

      Delete
    7. Britain has blood on it's hands all over the world, notably in former colonies such as Ireland

      So did most of the major European powers, no one is saying that they did not. But just as we should not relate what Germany did in the past or France, or Spain to the modern versions of those countries nor should we for UK. to single out the UK in such a way and not other countries would of course be xenophobic (ie we do not hold modern Germany to what it did in the early to mid 20th century but we hold modern Britian to what it did in the early to mid 20th centenary).

      Yup the UVF was the armed wing of the DUP. and the IRA was the armed wing of sinn fein. Struggling to see your point, i thought the whole message was that we do not continually relate political parties to their former links with paramilitaries; after all if everyone did that we would never had a self confessed member of a terrorist organisation become deputy first minister

      Delete
    8. Sure. If you read my earlier post, I was simply say that British terrorists were as bad as the IRA (which GWC was on about). Some people seem to need reminding of that.

      If the British press reported all the unionist terrorist attacks on Scotland, Ireland etc with as much fervor as it did for IRA attacks on England, the UK would be a much better country for it, and the peace deal might not be under such threat.

      How many British people even know the worse massacre of the troubles was carried out by British terrorists against civilians in Dublin?

      Remember, I am neutral on the subject, being a dual British-Irish national. I not on either side.

      Delete
    9. probably not, but with republican terror groups (the IRA in particular) causing over 50% of the deaths in the troubles, then it is just a rule of numbers that those groups are going to get more press, kill more people = more peoples deaths associated to those organisations to report.

      Delete
    10. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    11. Since the start of the war of independence in Ireland, which remains unresolved due to the partitioning, the number of Irish dead outweighs Brits killed.

      If you want to just start with the period known as the Troubles, then per capita, Irish victims are far higher. This is a much better measure of impact on people in terms of families / communities. If you are irish, you are far, far more likely to know someone killed in the Troubles by the British.

      Then you have all the people interred by the Brits. These were victims equivalent to those injured by bombs. I'd rather have a bit of shrapnel in the leg than be locked up for years. So again the Irish have suffered far more.

      Britain of course wasn't partitioned. Ireland was, so Ireland is the very obvious victim here. Welsh, Scots and England did not suffer the emotional trauma of having their country broken up, only the Irish did. Even the N. Irish got what they wanted. The losers in the partitioning were the Irish.

      Finally, you to separate army deaths from civilian. If you join the army, you volunteer to be shot/killed. You ask for it. You are not a victim. A casualty, but not a victim. Also, N. Ireland isn't British, so British Army Troops (unless they were N. Irish nationals) were a foreign occupy force attacked by a N. Irish/Irish resistance. Occupying army attacked by resistance army. Deaths here cannot be counted alongside civilians.

      There is no doubt Ireland has suffered far more in this long, sorry episode of British imperialism than it's far larger, vastly more powerful neighbour.

      Delete
    12. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    13. This is a useful reference.

      http://www.wesleyjohnston.com/users/ireland/past/troubles/troubles_stats.html

      Most of the Irish Republican Army victims were British Army, i.e. army on army.

      By contrast, British unionist terrorists targeted civilians as a rule. Same for the British army; it killed more civilians than IRA.

      Delete
    14. THe IRA was not an army, it was an terrorist organisation, just because you put put the name in the title. They had no more right to kill them than civilians

      Delete
    15. The IRA were an army by the dictionary definition of the word. They volunteered to fight. They were not civilians. That is what I meant.

      army
      /ˈɑːmi/
      noun
      1.an organized military force equipped for fighting on land.

      The British army had no right to kill civilians either. Both they and the IRA committed terrorist attacks. Both were terrorist groups. You can’t excuse the British army from its terrorist acts simply because it is 'state' force. I many ways that’s worse as atrocities are then state sanctioned.

      Delete
    16. depends on the situation, if a 'civilian' attempts to shoot a soldier /police office then he has the right to use lethal force. Unfortunately some civilians got caught in the cross fire, this does not make them terrorists. Of course there were some killings that 'illegal' and I believe that there are going to be some solders charged with murder for this.

      Delete
    17. On and the War of Independence' is resolved. NI stays part of the UK until the people who live there don't want it to, its written in a binding agreement. Ireland has given up its legal/constitutional claim on NI.

      Delete
    18. The English army intentionally shot people who were no threat to them, such as the below Irish guy.

      If English soldiers shoot at Irish people on Irish land (unless the partitioning made N. Ireland belong to England?), is it a surprise if Irish people shoot back?

      I imagine if Germany was occupying part of Britain and repressing the local Brits with violent jackboot force, you'd be quite sympathetic to a BRA.

      https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-foyle-west-49358309

      Seamus Bradley: Coroner says 1972 Army killing unjustified

      The Army's killing of a member of the IRA in Londonderry in 1972 was unjustified, a coroner has found.

      Seamus Bradley, 19, was shot and killed in the Creggan area of the city during Operation Motorman on 31 July 1972.


      But yes, there is a peace agreement now. N. Ireland must (all but) stay in the EU to preserve it.

      Delete
    19. I'll leave this for now, but remember that the PIRA was formed in response to unionist violence against a peaceful Irish catholic civil rights movement.

      If Irish catholics had been granted their civil rights, it's highly unlikely that the IRA would have formed, and certainly would have struggled to gain sympathy, funding etc.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Provisional_Irish_Republican_Army

      The Provisional IRA emerged in December 1969…. The Troubles had begun shortly before when a largely Catholic, nonviolent civil rights campaign was met with violence from both Ulster loyalists and the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC), culminating in the August 1969 riots and deployment of British troops.[24] The IRA initially focused on defence of Catholic areas…

      Delete
    20. There is no English Army - there is the British Army (UK army) which has soldiers from many countries in it.

      Northern Island of course is not part of 'England' it is part of the UK as per international agreement. So UK soldiers were serving in part of the UK.

      You are starting to sound very un neutral. I'm happy to admit that there were issues on both sides, you seem to wish to blame everything on the Uk (sic England).

      AS you say we will leave it there, hopefully that part of history is firmly in the past as well as the titles of nationalist or loyalist, this latter part it now slowly happening with polling showing younger generations not considering themselves either.

      Delete
  23. If I may, I would like to add a point that seems to be missed by many. If a Wings party is added to the choice to maximize the yes to independence vote, then is not the logical reaction from the unionists to do the same. It would be interesting if James or some other bright number cruncher could game out that scenario and see what impact it would have.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unionist parties have almost always had a vote majority in national elections (I think 2015 was the only exception), so it wouldn't look good.

      Delete
  24. I was stunned when I read the Times article and then the subsequent pieces

    Especially, as you pointed out, the same Wings pointed out the folly of trying to game the D'Hondt system.

    In the Indyref campaign for 2014, Wings was important. He gave people a lot of material to counter the scare stories and almost total negative press, but that work was done in person. Just doing it online with an inline presence wasn't enough.

    Like many, I contributed to his fundraisers, but I won't now.

    This comes across as an ego trip, a desire to be at the centre, also fueled by his own prejudices where they conflict with SNP policy.

    The 2014 Indyref was lost. Narrowly. Possibly at the hands of "The Vow", but it was lost.

    The Conservatives however set the stage for a "material change in circumstances", firstly by "EVEL" and how it was handled, but more so by Brexit.

    The SNP's mandate was campaigned for as giving a choice between Brexit and Indy, whether eventually in or out of the EU on Scotland's terms.

    As Brexit is not yet here, I mean we think we know what might happen, but we are not sure, the calling of Indyref is a careful decision.

    We have seen in Catalonia that fucking around with this won't get anyone leaping to your defence. Even calling a ref will get hit by court cases or possibly retroactive legislation in Westminster, it will be a tough fight that requires cunning and dotting Is crossing Ts to get the legal foundation beyond doubt

    So the last fucking thing he need us an egomaniac who seems to have developed a habit of picking fights he does not need to, based in England, giving the Unionists so much ammunition. It grabs headlines and envigorates SiU but it wastes energy and is not what you need right now.

    The fact that "Klan Alba" Kenny Farquharson was Wings's medium of choice for this, and that the article wasn't charged for on the website, tells you how much this delights the Unionists. He has so much baggage that any focus on Indy will be drowned out by his own words, on other issues, anti-Trans, losing the Dugdale case, abuse directed at politicians etc

    Thus egotrip is a fucking scunner

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And you say you contributed to his fundraisers?

      Were you unaware of this new party thought despite him mentioning it some while back and a discusssion taking place?

      Weird...

      Delete
    2. This 100%. Super post that sums up Stuart Campbell.

      Delete
    3. Not weird at all Mogabee. Stuart Campbell was excellent during the 2014 referendum and it is totally understandable why people have contributed to his crowd funding in the past. Now he is becoming a liability. An ego trip it is nothing more nothing less.

      Delete
    4. To be fair, everyone is 'anti-trans', myself included it seems (I'm a chemist who did a far bit of biology at uni so automatically fall into this category).

      As of this morning, even the King/Queen of woke Guardian is 'anti-trans'.

      https://twitter.com/lisatozzi/status/1161963603265773569

      Delete
    5. Not at all weird mogabee. Rev Stu's following of Graham Linehan down this weird route has been going on for a while, so I have been less inclined, like many if the 2012 - 2014 posters, to stick in the BTL culture of WoS, and then less so to read above the line either

      That's another asinine bit if fuckwittery surfacing these last few months "these people who have been out there in all weathers, enduring all the abuse, doing all that work, don't *really* want Indy..."

      Arsewater of the worst kind

      That'd be like saying Rev Stu doesn't want Indy just because he lives where he made his life. He patently does, and taking cheap shots at any activist, politician or whoever who is doing all they can is a disservice

      But, in this, he is wrongheaded, and I don't know how the Wings that saw that clearly then, has got to where he is now

      Delete
  25. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-49352971

    Corbyn: UK parliament should not block Indyref2

    ...There has been speculation that Labour and the SNP are moving towards an agreement to join forces at Westminster in an attempt to remove Boris Johnson from Downing Street.

    On Wednesday, Mr Corbyn wrote to opposition leaders at Westminster and Tory rebels outlining a plan to table a no-confidence vote "at the earliest opportunity when we can be confident of success".

    If passed, he suggested he would then become leader of a "strictly time-limited" caretaker government, pending a general election.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The leader of the Tory remain faction, Jo Swinson said no to an anti-Johnson pact.

      Delete
    2. To be fair there is alot of playing to the press at the moment. If it came down to a corbyn pact or a no deal then they would have to bite the bullet and go with corbyn, they would be crucified if they did not.

      Dosn't help that probably a third of the Labour party would rather it not be Corbyn!

      Delete
    3. If the pact is simply to stop no deal, get an extension, then have a GE, it's hard for any Remainers to refuse that. It's not as if Corbyn could go back on his word and try to stay in office or something, ruling out a GE. The Libs, SNP and Remain Con could just withdraw support and trigger a GE.

      English indy is of course an option for Boris; that would make his life so much easier. Corybn is probably mulling this too; he is, after all, an English nationalist just like Boris.

      Certainly, England cannot have Brexit and keep the full union with N. Ireland. Nor Scotland it looks like either. Choices must be made.

      Delete
  26. Here's the latest poll:
    Remain in the EU 43% (+2)
    Leave the EU with a deal 29% (+2)
    Leave the EU without a deal 19% (-6)
    Don’t know 9% (+2)

    So Leave should win a second referendum as 53% back an exit in total now that the UK has democratically voted to leave.

    And survation is one of the better pollsters for Remain when it comes to asking how people would vote in a direct re-run of L vs R 2016 (which is obviously not going to happen).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If it was a straight choice, No Deal or Remain, I suspect a good proportion of those choosing leave with a deal will vote remain rather than no deal.

      Delete
    2. Sure, but the choice would be deal or remain.

      Delete
  27. In Holyrood elections the V2 Regional List vote is your most important vote as it is full PR and it will be counted no matter what.

    https://www.electoral-reform.org.uk/voting-systems/types-of-voting-system/party-list-pr/

    So you should use it to vote for the party you'd like to see win the election / form cabinet.

    Your V1 Constituency Vote is British FPTP and that means it may be 'binned', i.e. not counting towards the winning candidate(s). This is exactly what happened to most constituency votes in Scotland 2016. Less than half actually counted towards the MSPs elected by this method. As a result, you may wish to vote tactically here for e.g. the SNP if you think e.g. your Green candidate hasn't a hope in hell. That way your vote isn't wasted.

    https://www.electoral-reform.org.uk/voting-systems/types-of-voting-system/first-past-the-post/

    Anyway, if you want a wings party to form government, then vote Wings on the regional list. If you want Sturgeon et al. in cabinet, vote SNP. However don't vote tactically on the regional list; it's not possible. You can only do that on the constituency ballot.

    ReplyDelete
  28. I disagree - SNP and Greens are taking Yes voters for granted and they both need a kick up the arse. SNP and Green sycophants will argue otherwise no doubt.

    Wings though will have to convince me that they can win seats and a lot of them as in eat into the out and out Quisling Parties seats numbers.

    ReplyDelete
  29. The key to getting a majority at Holyrood is the second party not the SNP.

    2011 was a miracle which is unlikely to be repeated.

    2016 required people lending their voters to the Greens in key regions meaning that the second party ploy worked. The Greens have been garbage but there is a pro-Indy majority.

    The voting system is designed to prevent single parties having an overalll majority unless they get around 50% of the vote in the constituencies and the List. However, there is a big flaw which can be exploited by voting for a second party on the List, which will lead to more pro-Indy MSPs than just voting SNP1&2.

    The problem at the moment is trhe Greens are not really electable to most people so a more sensible party would be better for the job.

    ReplyDelete
  30. We should have lots of sex. Hey, i am looking for an online sexual partner ;) Click on my boobs if you are interested (. )( .)

    ReplyDelete