Friday, January 8, 2021
Wednesday, January 6, 2021
I'm warning you, if you say "Jehovah" once more, or "England" to a former leader of the Liberal Democrats...
Presumably the Lib Dems think France should also be required to leave the European Union in order to save the English from the consequences of their own voting preferences.https://t.co/ZiqZWlsUu9— James Kelly (@JamesKelly) December 30, 2020
‘The English’ 🙄— Tim Farron (@timfarron) December 30, 2020
What the hell's supposed to be wrong with that?— James Kelly (@JamesKelly) December 30, 2020
Lumping us together as some homogeneous oppressive mass. It’s a hallmark of nationalism to do that, and I’m assuming you don’t want lumping in with UKIP...?— Tim Farron (@timfarron) December 30, 2020
Tim, you are making yourself look completely bloody ridiculous here. Everyone can see that there is nothing whatsoever about my tweet, let alone the innocuous term "the English", that states or implies an "oppressive mass".— James Kelly (@JamesKelly) December 31, 2020
For future reference, is there an acceptable Lib Dem term for "the people of England"? And if there isn't, doesn't that make conversation slightly difficult at times?— James Kelly (@JamesKelly) December 31, 2020
Just not lump us all together... or talk about us as if we’re all Boris Johnson or Margaret Thatcher. I’m a northerner so I’m far more British than English.— Tim Farron (@timfarron) December 31, 2020
Sigh. I ask again: how do I say "the people of England" without "lumping you all together"? Are you saying there's no acceptable way of doing it, and if so, isn't that frankly a bit nuts?— James Kelly (@JamesKelly) December 31, 2020
Here’s my point: It isn’t the English who oppress, dictate to or rule Scotland. The English are as diverse as the Scots and do not consider Scots to be ‘other’ to us - in fact many of us northerners see more in common with Scotland than the south. I certainly do.— Tim Farron (@timfarron) December 31, 2020
That's a point that should have been made to someone who actually said that the English oppressed Scotland. Having said that, I believe it is Lib Dem policy to deny Scotland a choice on its own future, regardless of how we vote. On what planet is that not "dictatorial"?— James Kelly (@JamesKelly) December 31, 2020
Tuesday, January 5, 2021
A small, cowardly man pursuing a bitter personal vendetta: Stuart Campbell's late night legal threats against me
As I pointed out a few hours ago, it's fairly likely that Stuart Campbell broke some law or other yesterday by sending me an unsolicited, highly abusive email, calling me a "wretched little c**t" and a "pathetic, snivelling coward".
This was not part of some ongoing correspondence - it was a bolt from the blue, and the first email I had received from him for nine years. However, I made clear that I did not intend to pursue the matter. Since then, I have had to wade through a sea of drivel from his apologists: "Grow up, James! You must have led a sheltered life, James! You're so bitter and twisted, James! You could have just sworn back at him, James! Be a man, James!"
Well, I now expect to hear no more of that nonsense ever again, because I have just received a lengthy email dripping with menace from his legal representative (a man who I had previously assumed to be a friend) implying that action may be taken by Campbell against me. Why? Because he doesn't like a comment that was posted on this blog by Douglas Clark, and rather than do what normal people would do and just post a response (it's not as if the guy doesn't have a platform) he wants to censor it out of existence, and if I refuse to censor it out of existence he wants to get revenge. Not against the person who actually expressed the views, but against me, who did not. Don't anyone ever tell me that this isn't a small, cowardly man pursuing a nasty, bitter personal vendetta. Until I get some sleep, the only action I intend to take is to post the entire correspondence so far and allow people to make their own minds up. The only part I'll leave out is the quote of Douglas Clark's comment - ironically if I include that Campbell will probably claim it as "defamation".
To be abundantly clear, Campbell and his friends have been peddling a number of falsehoods today to prepare the groundwork for this stunt. They have suggested that my statement that I had turned on pre-moderation of comments amounted to an "admission" that I had "actively passed" Douglas Clark's comment. That is categorically untrue. It was auto-published *before* I turned pre-moderation on. They have claimed that Campbell asked me to delete the comment. As far as I can see, he did not - he sent me an abusive email, but he didn't bother to explain what he was actually angry about or ask me to take any specific action. Pretty much the only thing he did was call me a "c**t". Therefore the claim that I "refused" to censor Douglas Clark's comment is also patently untrue.
Hi James. I wanted to let you know that I am just about to send an email to you from my work account and to explain that the reason for sending it so late in the day is the urgency to things. I didn't want to send it without prior comment or letting you know it's on its way - you'll understand when you see it, I hope and I hope too that we'll be able to get the issue raised resolved.
OK, no problem, I'll look out for it.
Monday, January 4, 2021
Sunday, January 3, 2021
"So, for the historical record: I have no belief whatsoever, earnest or otherwise, that I can get rid of Nicola Sturgeon in the next four months.
I’m an idiot..."
"...with a website."
This is indisputably true.
"I have no power."
Agreed - hence the word 'comical'.
"This site has for some time called for Sturgeon to resign because it is our belief that she’s going to have to anyway."
So to sum up - you're putting pressure on her to go and actually think she will go, and yet you think that's somehow different from having an earnest belief that you're going to get rid of her. Well, all I can say is that I admire the exhibition of advanced hair-splitting, but it doesn't change my assessment that it's all rather comical. Nicola Sturgeon has reached almost unprecedented levels of popularity in public polling, and has taken the independence movement to sustained majority support for the first time ever. The notion that she's on the brink of being deposed is fanciful in the extreme, and can only really be explained by heavy-duty wishful thinking on the part of people who are blinded with rage towards her.
The rest of the article is an extended, unhinged and utterly unconvincing waffle about the reasons Ms Sturgeon will supposedly no longer be SNP leader in four months' time, which culminates in quite possibly the most bonkers sentence Stuart has ever written in his life -
"And let’s be clear: the only thing the Unionists fear is Sturgeon going in the next few weeks."
The terrifying thing is that he probably believes that to be true, even though anyone who hasn't lost the plot can see that it's self-evidently the polar opposite of the truth. Whatever anyone may think of Nicola Sturgeon, she's plainly one of the finest political communicators in the entire English-speaking world, and her opponents would think it was Christmas all over again if they were suddenly facing someone less formidable.
"they’ll celebrate the near-certain avoidance of an SNP/indy majority, aided by the idiotic “both votes SNP” argument (ironically promoted by James Kelly) that ensures hundreds of thousands of pro-indy votes are wasted"
Oh dear. Don't tell me I'm going to have to remind Stuart yet again of his splendid "both votes SNP" article from the run-up to the 2016 election in which he sagely explained to readers why attempts to game the electoral system were "a mug's game". You know what? Some of us understand that the way an electoral system works doesn't magically change just because our feelings towards it change. Electoral systems are stubborn in that way.
"Information to which I’m privy would get me put in jail if I published it"
Here's the irony of this situation: I'm fairly sure I'm also privy to at least some of the information Stuart is referring to, and it leads me to have great concerns about the events that led up to Alex Salmond being put on trial. I'm on record as saying that if Mr Salmond were to set up his own party, I would probably support it, which would put Stuart and I on the same side. But being a supporter of Mr Salmond doesn't preclude me from having a sense of realism about Nicola Sturgeon and the vital role she will have to play if Scotland is to become independent any time soon.