Monday, March 30, 2020

The time has come to accept Alex Salmond's innocence, and to welcome him back into the SNP fold

Those of you with very long memories may recall that when cameras were first allowed into the Scottish courts, one of the first televised criminal trials (in fact I think it might have been the very first one) featured Alex Salmond's future defence counsel Gordon Jackson.  He was defending a client against a charge of murder, and he gave a brilliant explanation to the jury of the concept of "beyond reasonable doubt".  He said that if they were 90% sure the defendant was guilty, the correct verdict was to acquit.  The point he was making is that a lot of people would assume that 90% certainty is more than enough for a guilty verdict, but in reality a 10% doubt means that guilt has not been proved beyond reasonable doubt and that acquittal should be inevitable.

That's why it's wrong to say "if Alex Salmond was acquitted, it means the jury think his accusers were lying".  It may have been that the jury weren't sure whether the accusers were telling the truth, in which case they had to give the benefit of doubt to the defendant.

But the flipside of that coin is that there is no justification whatever for treating an acquitted defendant as if he is essentially guilty.  As I understand it, the position of Rape Crisis Scotland and certain commentators is as follows -

* If someone is accused of sexual assault, he must by definition be guilty.

* The accused person is worsening the ordeal of his 'victims' if he tries to defend himself in court.

* The jury is worsening the ordeal of the accused person's 'victims' if it returns a not guilty verdict.

* An accused person who is acquitted should still be assumed to be guilty in every non-legal sense and his professional and social life should effectively be extinguished in much the same way that would have occurred if the verdict had been guilty.

That attitude is quite simply incompatible with the principles of the justice system.  The returned verdict means that society must regard Alex Salmond as innocent, not merely in a criminal sense but in every other sense too, except to the extent that certain facts were accepted by both prosecution and defence.  Do those agreed facts justify the continued demonisation of Mr Salmond?  Predictably, the SNP's highly controversial Equalities Convener Fiona Robertson believes that they do, but I'd suggest that's exactly the kind of extreme puritanism that led to the US Republicans over-reaching themselves two decades ago by attempting to impeach Bill Clinton.  

The Panelbase poll yesterday suggested that, against the confident expectations of a great many people, the SNP have come through the Salmond trial totally unscathed - indeed SNP support seems to have increased even further.  Having miraculously dodged a bullet, now is the time to bring unnecessary division to a definitive end by welcoming Alex Salmond back into the fold.  I know not everybody likes him, but we don't all have to like each other to be part of the same party.  There are one or two Russia-obsessed SNP parliamentarians who will probably never get over Mr Salmond's association with RT, but to the best of my knowledge there is no party rule that prohibits appearances on certain TV channels.

*  *  *

The coronavirus crisis has marked a new nadir for British journalism, and I think this tweet sums it up best -

"I've seen journalists be full of s*** before but I have never seen anything quite like this thing with UK journalists rallying around 'herd immunity', patting themselves on the back for understanding THE SCIENCE (everybody gets the virus), and then pretending it never happened."


  1. Unionists seem utterly terrified of Salmond.

    I'm pleased to see the trial had zero impact on anything polls wise - as I suggested it would - but I do find it amusing that the man instills such fear in unionism.

    1. Totally agree S.S.

      Hope you and your family are well.

      O/T , a wee bit of history for you and your connections to France with your wife.

      I was just reading there , three miles south of Inverary at Loch Fyne over in the west , theres a headland called "Rudha Nam Frangach" ( promontory of the French) where French traders had a settlement right up to the end of the 18th start of the 19th century.

      Buying herring and other scottish goods and importing French wine. During the 18th cnetury in particular it was used for smuggling in goods to avoid paying "british" excise.

      Scratch the surface of modern Scotland , and you see our links with France are deep and centuries old.

  2. Depends on what comes of potential allegations and rumours from elsewhere. They will still try using the charges and rumours against him...

    1. 'There's no smoke without fire' they say.

      The fact that the jury concluded innocent on all charges, right down to the least significant one, means there was no smoke at all. Not even the tiniest wisp.

      I've been pleasantly surprised by the number of folk I know who had their suspicions he was guilty, yet are now saying how wrong they were to think that. They are angry at the media for trying to mislead them.

      I understand it, because I feel that myself. I gave the accusers the benefit of the doubt because I felt it was right to be neutral and I don't know the man, so maybe he was guilty... Now I'm very angry at them for lying to me.

    2. And for what they are doing to an innocent man.

    3. Some people never learn. The Britnat media are not journalists they are lying propaganda serving scum. They sign up to lie and misinform to order for the British state so that their editor can get a poxy CBE or something.

  3. An excellent article until the final paragraph. All the plotters need to be hosed out of the SNP and the whole place disinfected to get rid of the Britnats. A bunch of Britnat turds stinking out a great political party.

  4. During their reign of terror in Kampuchea (Cambodia) between 1975 and 1979 the Khmer Rouge used indoctrinated children to "identify" adults suspected of knowing a foreign language and/or having lazy 'western' bourgeois lifestyles. The accused were automatically executed.

    Rape Crisis Scotland, the accusers and virtually all the press & broadcast media seem to be taking an analogous approach to the Alex Salmond allegations (now failed in the highest criminal court in the land).

  5. The old Brit establishment method of keep throwing mud..

    Seems to be faltering!

    Old yoons are withering on the vine ..

    Get yerself back into frontline politics Eck ..

    Because,everythings gonnae be fine!

  6. Betrayal, treachery, plots in the SNP at the highest level, Nah! follow the money and it's a pound to a penny a newspaper's behind it, and which newspaper's got form for this and reason to pay for it The Daily CD perhaps? The Hark the angels sing? the chancers screaming for Nicola Sturgeon's head are using the situation for entirely different reasons, well if you understand the people leading the screaming and check their past records you'll find plenty of reasons and past history as to why they hate the current FM and if you think about it they never had much to say about the former FM before this happened, but all of a sudden now they claim to be lifelong buddies of Mr Salmond

    Until Alex Salmond speaks on the subject and reveals what he believes then a Holyrood enquiry will take place and the result be known don't presume that these folk screaming at the tops of their voices for Nicola Sturgeons head are anybody's friends but their own

    Wait for the real truth from the parties involved before you reach for your pitchforks

  7. Nicola Sturgeon , to my mind , is innocent until proven guilty , just like Mr Salmond.I will reserve judgement till then.

    However , for a long time now , i have been uncomfortable with factions within or linked to the SNP , and the whole debacle over section 30 and progress over indyref 2.

    I agree though , united we stand divided we fall , and there is no doubt there are many and varied agent provocateurs within the indy movement.Not all of them are british , many of them are simply headstrong individuals acting for their own ends.

    Thats been Scotland ( and Irelands) problem though throughout history. This individualism and factional pettiness faced against a generally united and disciplined westminster who generally picked off the factions using their divide and conquer mantra.

    So its nothing new.

    Which leads us to the problem of the longer the SNP sit on their hands and dont take a pro active approach to the next indyref , the more and more they will be susceptible to being picked off and divided.Thats goes for the wider indy movement.

    I will wait for the truth , certainly , but it goes without saying the whole Alec Salmond affair has been a disgrace and shows without dobut the level these people , whoever they are , will stoop to.

    1. Aside from the legal stuff, is there any chance of making the population at large more aware of the unsatisfactory nature of the relationship between the top civil servant in Scotland (whoever it is) and the First Minister (who has to pick their name off a short short list)? Westminster will be quite happy to leave this particular fishbone sticking in the gullet unless it comes under severe pressure.

      I believe that people ought to be fired up with nationalism in the broadest sense but they should also have a basic understanding of the administrative and constitutional mechanics at work. This also applies to the “power devolved is power retained” nature of the relationship between Holyrood and Westminster which has been exposed by the EU debate.

  8. Salmond's own defence was that he was indeed a sexual predator, of poor character and an unfaithful, sexually aggressive predatory individual. That's the assertion of Salmond's own defence counsel in a court of law (notwithstanding his own private misgivings).

    A number of the cases did not involve any dispute as to the facts of the matters, just a different interpretation of the state of mind of those involved. Whether you believe Salmond is guilty or not depends very much on who you believe, I'm not sure myself whether his actions constituted a criminal offence or just a grey area of presumed consent which was either not given or retrospectively retracted. His not guilty verdict does not exonerate him from his actions in a moral sense as there was no dispute his behaviour was immoral (by his own admission) and his character is forever tainted.

    Salmond rejoining the SNP, at the very least will be a divisive individual and a distraction. The media portrayed independence as Salmond's own pet project during indyref so there#s a lot to be gained from politically distancing the SNP from Salmond, to highlight that indy is not about him or any other individual but the right self determination of everyone.

    1. Unknown 9.21 am

      The first line of your post appears to be your own interpretation.Not mine.

      Your second paragraph again is wildly disingenuous.

      One of the "sexual charges" against him , for example ,was an accusation of "sexual assault" for chivvying a woman up a spiral staircase by pushing her in the small of her back.

      FFS , if thats a sexual assault , then practically every man on this earth who has ever innocently touched a woman for whatever reason is guilty of sexual assault.

      The trial was a farce from start to finish.His actions in a moral sense are irrelevant , as are your interpretations of them. He wasnt on trial for his morality.

      He was on trial for sexual assault , and rape , and was found not guilty and not proven on all charges.

      I hope alec salmond does either rejoin the snp , or take an active part in indyref 2 from a high profile position.

      The very fact certain individuals are desperately trying to continue to throw mud at him constantly in the hope it sticks shows how desperately they fear him.

      My final point is the media will portray independence as sturgeons pet project , or anyone elses who leads.

      Thats what they do......portray an image of scotland being bewitched by certain radical individuals , try and take them down , and then tell us all to get back in our boxes jocks , you have had your fun , time to get back to drink, drugs ,labour, murder, and fitba.

      Pick up a history book of the empire, and throughout the generations , you will see the same or similar tactics played out in many countries around the world including Ireland.

      Independence isnt about any one individual , or a particluar political disourse.

      Its about our nation becoming a normal country free to make its own choices unconstrained by the shackles of a so called union in name only .

      I welcome Alec Salmond any day taking a high profile part in the indy movement or SNP.

    2. I understand Salmond was found innocent of all charges by a jury comprising 70% women.

      It's pretty easy to make your mind up about his guilt in such circumstances.

    3. Not a single word of that statement was true. Strange how many people insist on repeating such obvious and easily disproved lies. They won't be able to prevent the publication of the court transcript for much longer. At which point sturgeon is a dead woman.

    4. Jury decided there wasn't even any smoke, never mind a fire.

      Innocent on every single charge made by every single accuser.

      It's not possible to have been found more innocent.

      He's currently the most innocent man walking around as he's been judged as such after having his life closely examined in intimate detail, unlike the rest of us.

    5. From one unknown to another. Your post is just mince. You know nothing unknown.

    6. Ah fuck off. What part of not guilty don't you fuckin understand.

  9. The media believed their own hype on this case, they had his conviction articles ready but when the jury heard the actual evidence they threw out the charges. The media think they are judge and jury which they are not.

  10. Given Alex has been found not guilty I can see no reason to continue with his membership suspension, assuming he wishes to rejoin.

    Whether Alex should rejoin the battle as a mainstream politician I'm less sure. Retired leaders tend to step back from front line politics and he stepped down as leader 6 years ago before any of this blew up. The case is not why he is no longer a politician nor is he in his first flush of youth. I do think Nicola, Kate Forbes etc., do represent an exciting and very modern future for the SNP.

    His television work on the other hand seems to fray the nipple ends of unionists and I do hope he continues with that and I do think he will have a role to play in a future Indy campaign as a number of retired politicians like Dennis Canavan did very effectively last time.

    There is no civil war that I am aware of. I said a while back that a lot of unionists seemed to have a lot of eggs in the Salmond Guilty headline. That basket has been dropped. So let us close ranks and move forward and get on with the tasks at hand of running the country well and building towards an inevitable second Indy ref.

  11. Must admit have not spent much time reading what has been going on but from what Nationalists have been telling me some people in the Scot Gov/ SNP have been trying to drag up dirt on Alex Salmond and /or trying to frame him. It also appears that the Scottish Police may of been involved in doing this as well.

    Seems a bit far fetched to me, but I agree with many nationalists that there needs to be a public inquiry into this.

  12. I'm amazed at the amount of people who've popped up claiming to be Alex Salmond's personal friends who've known him for years and years but just forgot to ever mention it before and all of a sudden know all about everything that's going on and it's all Nicola Sturgeon's doing

    Then when you ask these long time friends if the former FM told them this they claim they're not allowed to tell but they're quite able to infer suggest insist that she is to blame they just can't say whether Mr Salmond told them this

    You know why they can't say? figure it out, it's not difficult

    These people are doing what the TV news does, they start a fire then fan the flames stand back and complain that nobody's putting out the fire

    If you question these people directly they and their supporters will abuse you with vile name calling and foul mouthed expletives
    which we all remember was the tactic of Unionists against Alex Salmond

    So who's paying them for this should be the next question, well you'll be asked to fund them before you know the result of the truth, and funnily enough entirely similar to how Farage and Johnson sold everybody their wonderful Brexit that turned out to be, well, not true, but you'd paid for it so too late tough on you I'm all right Jack

    What kind of people shout at you to condemn others before the evidence is known "we can prove it" they say, then fail to do so, "trust us" they say, well that's what Alex Salmonds accusers said before his trial and it turned out different didn't it

  13. I've read several scurrilous pieces about Alex Salmond "plotting to overthrow" Nicola Sturgeon. Of course, there is absolutely no evidence to support this, but even more importantly, history tells the opposite story.

    When AS was elected back into Westminster, the unionist papers waited with bated breath for the "inevitable" power struggle as he tried to wrest the leadership of the Westminster group from Ian Blackford. AS settled in as foreign affairs spokesman, and when IB was asked about being uncomfortable at the prospect of having a political heavyweight in his vicinity, he amusedly made remarks along the lines of "Are you kidding? What football manager would turn down the opportunity to have Lionel Messi in their team".

    The unionist media would LOVE to see a split between Salmond and Sturgeon. I HOPE that Sturgeon's hands are clean (the best outcome for all of us), but if they aren't then a quick surgical "shiel oot" of her and any other conspirators is necessary.

    In that case, personally I hope Alex comes back as leader, but if not, the party will still be better off to lead the wider yes movement with any cancer removed.

    1. Madness in my view. He lost the last referendum and continues to be an extremely divisive character. We need to win broader support, not push people away again. Sturgeon continues to be the right person to do that in my eyes, but should she need to step down, we should not be going backwards to Alex Salmond.

    2. I wonder if it's a bit ironic, given these proceedings, that the best role for Salmond might be as a political adviser (de luxe). Maybe he could be a Cummingsesque conductor of Unionist rage. But it would need a First Minister capable of standing up to him and not ending up in his breastpocket in a cartoon.

  14. A different anonymous

    Alex was a great guy, absolutely wonderful, but eh, he lost and he let Alistair Darling walk all over him in public and did nothing, he didn't take Scotland to the brink of Independence, he took us backwards from it when Scotland was at 51% YES
    The UK of England came up with a deal and he allowed them the space to promote it because he enjoyed leading the rebellion but didn't fancy the hard bit that comes after that, so looking at it from that angle who's the Unionist then?

    Nicola Sturgeon said quite clearly at the time she was elected FM "I don't want to just hold a referendum I want to win it"

    So was that a reference to Alex Salmond's real position then

    Now what I just wrote is the same type of garbage the wee gang of Nicola Sturgeon haters are using to convince everybody that she's bad

    Don't let these shysters twist your heads, wait for the real truth before condemning anybody, the shysters are not on the side of Scotland, they're on their own side

    1. You really are a sad prick. Madmentalnicky just announced £1,500.000 for scottish womens aid and rcs a matter of days since both htose organisations publicly attacked Alex Salmond and his proven innocence in the government sponsored framing attempt.

      She is literally trolling us now. Coronavirus! you can't touch me! maggot brained bitch!

    2. Sorry anonymous 2.08pm

      By the wildest stretch of the imagination , i cannae agree with your post.

      In what planet did Alec Salmond take Scotland away from independence?

      The guy over many years did all the donkey work that brought about the first SNP administration , and took us to within a whisker of independence from a very low starting point.

      Whatever you think of the guy , he at least managed to attain an indepedence referendum in the first place. Nicola Sturgeon and the softly softly crew havent managed that.

      As they say you have to be in it to win it , not standing at the edge of the table begging for the crumbs from westminsters table hoping for a better day in the future.

    3. It's taken us a long time to get to where we are. And I'm not having that wrecked by any cavemen out in the sticks.

      I know that I've been a bit tough on local government -- but still, 70% of the jobs go to the feministruating half of the population. And if anyone wants to change that then they'll need an impact assessment. I've every confidence that my HR professionals will ensure a politically correct outcome.

    4. @Balmaha

      Read it more carefully, I was posing an argument to show how the grusome twosome have framed their bilge, and btw one of them is now under investigation for his big mouthed behaviour

      There are too many folk claiming Alex Salmond said things he never said then winding up the YES movement to support a cause which they'll then shortly ask you for money to support all because you'll think Alex Salmond's behind it

      He's not y'know

  15. I have to say I'm thoroughly enjoying he apoplectic rage of unionists at the jury's finding in the Alex Salmond case.

    If he'd been found innocent on a single charge, you could maybe argue he was just lucky they couldn't pin it on him. But innocent on 14 charges from 9 accusers? It's like a record new level of innocence. It must be a new record surely for someone to have been found so innocent?

    1. I agree, the level of incompetence from the authorities in this case is mind blowing. To fail to have enough evidence to get one conviction can be understandable to fail to have enough for 14 is inexcusable and is obviously a serious case of waste of money and resources. The case was obviously so weak that it should not of been brought to court.

      As i said i competently agree with nationalists that are calling for an enquiry to see if this was politically motivated by members of the SNP/Scot Gov as many nationalists are telling me it is.

    2. If it takes out the Brit nats in the SNP, it would certainly be a wise course of action.

  16. Astonishing and gob-smacking really since Edinburgh is the most Yoon City in Scotland. I don't expect the Yoon Pres and Media to stop the smearing any time soon and it is obvious their needs to be a purge of anti Indy elements and fifth columnists in the SNP.

  17. As we get older we sometimes begin to doubt our ability to "make a difference" in the world. It is at these times that our hopes are boosted by the remarkable achievements of other pensioners who have found the courage to take on challenges that would make many of us wither.

    GWC is such a person. He said to me, 'I've often been asked, 'What do you do now that you're retired?'

    'Well...I'm fortunate to have a chemical engineering background and one of the things I enjoy most is converting beer, wine and whisky into urine. It's rewarding, uplifting, satisfying and fulfilling. I do it every day and I really enjoy it.'

    GWC should be an inspiration to us all.

  18. My feeling is that a cabal of uber feminists insinuated themselves into positions and favour within the party. Some of them, I think are closet unionists, in league with other forces; others - genuine supporters of independence - naively saw their campaign as a move towards a new, modern Scotland. And - maybe, I admit - it's just what I hope is true ... Sturgeon did not want to oppose their 'modern woman' stance, but was caught out by the retrospective legislation, and completely screwed by the plot as it developed.

    1. Sturgeon signed off the new retrospective process that kicked off this whole business with Salmond. So if she was conned into it by Evans why has she agreed to a 2 year contract extension for Evans.

  19. Mortality rate (per capita) in the rUK now 2.6 times that of Scotland and growing.

    'For now' caveat continues to apply, but the trends look less like we are just running behind, and more like a lower infection rate as each day passes. Fingers crossed.

    Scottish testing rates remain 40% higher than the rUK per head.

  20. The alphabet sisters must be laughing their heads off at the lack of knowledge by so many, particularly SNP members, of who they are. They are at the heart of Scotgov. A criminal conspiracy right under the noses of the SNP members to send their previous leader to the clink for a long time. These are evil people. Evil people do not just go away quietly.

  21. Found Not Guilty in the most Yoon City in Scotland. The Quislings and the Alphabet Witches must be birlin in their self isolation right now. Margaret Curran must be in a padded cell now as well.

  22. He may have been found not guilty of the criminal charges, but he is clearly guilty of using his power and position to repeatedly proposition less powerful women in the workplace. He is a sex pest, of that there is no doubt.

    It would be hugely damaging to the SNP, the indy movement, and the position of women in Scottish society and politics if he was allowed back to play a major part in Scottish public life. And if Salmond cares more for independence than for his ego, he would recognise that, and disappear into quiet retirement.

    1. Finally, someone who has their eye on the prize.