Referendum 2014
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Time for reflection

Time for reflection | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
In the world of journalism, being second to a story carries certain advantages. The Sunday Herald scored a high-profile exclusive with its list of "Better Together" donators yesterday, but only tol...
Peter A Bell's insight:

Media conspiring with Better Together to conceal dubious nature of campaign donations.

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Jim Arnott's curator insight, April 8, 2013 6:00 AM

The Tories have channeled no money through others to the No Campaign.

Referendum 2014
The Scottish independence referendum and the debate about Scotland's constitutional future
Curated by Peter A Bell
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Politics Scotland

Politics Scotland | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Referendum 2014 will be winding down over the next week. Although the site will be retained as an archive, no new material will be posted after Sunday 21 September.


I would like to thank everyone who has supported this site.


For news, blogs, analysis and commentary on the aftermath of Scotland's independence referendum, please follow Politics Scotland - http://www.scoop.it/t/politics-scotland.

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Renata Hill's comment, September 22, 3:52 PM
Thank you for all of the educational content. It really helped inform my perspective on the referendum. Don't give up. Freedom from London can still happen.
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The best of friends

The best of friends | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
We’ve known and documented for some time now that Scottish Labour’s attitude towards “foreigners” is, well, let’s be super-generous and say “ambiguous”. But this photo from nine days ago made even us take a sharp breath.
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Call to boycott ‘firms who scared Scotland’

Call to boycott ‘firms who scared Scotland’ | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
POLITICAL leaders from both sides of the referendum debate joined in a pledge of unity for a common purpose as part of a reconciliation service at St Giles’ Cathedral.
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Labour's battle in a divided city

Labour's battle in a divided city | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
All eight constituencies backed the SNP's Yes campaign in a move which has bolstered their hopes of taking the city, a long-term Labour stronghold, next year.
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Labour will look to reach out to Scottish Yes voters

Labour will look to reach out to Scottish Yes voters | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Labour are going to focus on reaching out to disillusioned traditional Labour supporters who voted Yes in the Scottish referendum. Three of the four local authorities where a majority supported ind...
Peter A Bell's insight:

Those "senior Scottish Labour figures" are a bit late listening to people's concerns now. They spent the entire referendum campaign refusing to listen. They allied themselves with the Tories and other even more detestable parties and groups to browbeat, bully, deceive and intimidate the people of Scotland into throwing away a real opportunity to make Scotland a better country.


Curran and her despicable, deceitful, dishonest ilk seem to think we will all just forget how they behaved during the referendum campaign. They seriously imagine they will not be held to account by Scotland's voters. We get this from these self-serving nonentities all the time. The line is, "We know we failed you on every single occasion in the past, but we've changed and it will be different next time. Honest!". Who the hell is going to fall for that?


Curran is right about one thing. Scotland is divided. It is divided between those who regard it as a country and those who would make it no more than a region of Greater England. It is divided between those who seek real progressive change and those who pay lip service to the idea of change whilst fighting tooth and nail to preserve the old order and the old ways.


Scotland is divided between the political elites of the British state and the people. Margaret Curran and British Labour have declared their allegiance to the British state. They have rejected the people. Let the people respond accordingly.

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Why the Salmond magic is in need of a revisionist take

Displayed in the main reception room of Bute House is Sir James Gunn's painting of the former Secretary of State for Scotland, Thomas Johnston.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Do you think maybe David Torrance is seriously pissed off at being excluded from Alex Salmond's resignation press conference? This whole article fairly oozes petulant spitefulness. Hell hath no fury like a self-important hack scorned.


The fact that Torrance has to reach for a towering figure of Scottish politics such as Tom Johnston in order to show Salmond in a comparatively bad light is actually something of a compliment to the soon-to-be former First Minister. For the rest, his assessment of the man is no more than a catalogue of nit-picking plaints and petty sniping.


Along with the vast majority of his colleagues in the London-based media, Torrance makes the foolish error of imagining that people in Scotland are as obsessed with Alex Salmond as they are. In the case of Salmond's admirers and supporters, these denizens of the metropolitan meeja bubble translate that admiration and support through the filter of their own obsession and come up with unthinking adulation. While any dislike for Salmond is magnified by the prejudices of the British media elite into an equally mindless hatred.


The reality is far more mundane. The idea of Salmond as an object of cult hero-worship is distinctly ludicrous. As is the caricature of him as a despised figure of hate. The fact is that Alex Salmond is a very ordinary man with some mildly extraordinary political talents. Some people like him for his ordinariness. Others detest him for the genuine political abilities by which their own poor efforts are judged.


Much of what Torrance says about Salmond in his nasty, unseemly little diatribe is undoubtedly true - if grotesquely exaggerated. The point that Torrance misses is that most of us know all of this already. And we don't f***ing care!


We have never thought of Salmond as some kind of super-hero. Few of us have been taken in by the media's attempts either to demonise the man or to put him on a pedestal the better to knock him down. We just aren't bothered whether he is likeable or not. Our only concern was that he should be good at his job.


No doubt Tom Johnston had his faults as well. After all, he was nothing if not a wily political operator in much the same way that Salmond is. Johnston has the advantage that his human foibles and failings are obscured by the mists of time and hagiography, while Salmond's unremarkable defects are there to be pored over and hyperbolised by graceless little twerps such as David Torrance.


In the end, it is Torrance himself who is diminished by this pouty, fractious attempt at a hatchet job. Alex Salmond remains a man of substance.

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Sheridan's rallying call to Yes supporters: vote SNP next year and aim for 2020 indyref

Sheridan's rallying call to Yes supporters: vote SNP next year and aim for 2020 indyref | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Solidarity leader Tommy Sheridan has tonight urged pro-indy voters to unify around the SNP at next year's general election.
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There is a Better Way: The Vow & further powers - what next?

There is a Better Way: The Vow & further powers - what next? | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

With respect to new powers, there is a  trust problem for the three main devolution parties.  STUC itself was highly critical of the timing and presentation of the devolution proposals and the Vow. This mistrust of government is not confined to the 45% yes voters in the referendum.

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The Scottish Citizen: The Scottish Referendum and its aftermath. Feelings of absolute desolation, anger, disbelief and betrayal.

The Scottish Citizen: The Scottish Referendum and its aftermath. Feelings of absolute desolation, anger, disbelief and betrayal. | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Know that you are not alone in your feelings of desoltation, anger, disbelief and betrayal over the outcome of the Scottish Independence Referendum. I too am in many ways ashamed and embarassed for Scotland.
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The devo pact unravels

The devo pact unravels | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
THE three Unionist parties were last night at each other's throats over constitutional reform, as a row over "English votes for English laws" threatened to derail the timetable for more devolution that was promised after a No vote.
Peter A Bell's insight:

The reality is that there never was a "devo pact". There was just a gaggle of British politicians making whatever noises they thought necessary to dupe or scare people into voting No. There was no formal agreement. There were no actual powers on offer. There never was any "guarantee". The "timetable" was utterly meaningless. The whole thing was a rather clumsy exercise in political smoke and mirrors. But it was enough to sway the timorous and the gullible.


Against reason and against the lessons of history, many people allowed themselves to be persuaded that another round of constitutional tinkering might actually be both possible and effective in delivering a satisfactory constitutional settlement for Scotland.


Let's not mince words. These people are fools. Many have realised already just how foolish they have been. Over the coming weeks and months it will become increasingly difficult for others to avoid the same conclusion.


We should harbour no bitterness towards those No voters who realise their error. After all, they were subject to the full weight of the British establishment - politicians, media and big business - all telling the to be afraid and plying them with shiny baubles that looked for all the world like firm commitments to those with no time to examine them due to having important soap-operas to watch.

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So the union is secure for a generation after the referendum? I wouldn't be so sure, Mr Cameron

So the union is secure for a generation after the referendum? I wouldn't be so sure, Mr Cameron | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
When I hear politicians asserting that an issue has been settled "for a generation", I reach for my bag of salt. That's been the mutual line of David Cameron and Ed Miliband since they learned that the Scots had decided against divorce. Done and dusted, put to bed, settled "for a generation". On that, at least, the Tory and Labour leaders are agreed. Alex Salmond has put ice on the bun of pro-union politicians by stepping down as SNP leader and suggesting that he does not expect to see another independence referendum in his lifetime.
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The referendum is over but the energy persists

The referendum is over but the energy persists | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Scottish News, News Scotland - Politics, Referendum, Economy, Culture and intelligent opinion | Newsnet Scotland, uniquely Scottish
Peter A Bell's insight:

It is disappointing to find otherwise intelligent people persisting in the fantasy that meaningful progressive change can be effected within the context of a British state which has evolved largely to fulfil the purpose of resisting meaningful change of any kind.


People like Lesley Riddoch bear considerable responsibility for the Yes campaign's defeat in the referendum. A significant proportion of those voting No did so because they bought into the deluded notion that a No vote could yet have a positive outcome for Scotland. Many of them have already disabused themselves of this notion. When will Lesley Riddoch catch up?


Let us not be diverted from our course by those whose naive idealism renders them blind to realpolitik. Let us keep our focus on the prize of independence for our nation.

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Renata Hill's comment, September 22, 5:05 PM
I SO agree! The independence momentum must continue!
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Scotland referendum: who voted YES?

Scotland referendum: who voted YES? | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
What did the yes voters in the Scottish referendum have in common? These things.
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The Scottish National Party Is Now On The Brink Of Political Obliteration

The Scottish National Party Is Now On The Brink Of Political Obliteration | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
The SNP must reinvent itself after referendum loss.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Had to laugh at the headline. And the article itself was just about as hilarious. I'm not sure who told Thomas Hirst he could be a political analyst, but they grievously deceived the fool.

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MOVING ON

MOVING  ON | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
The last few days have been just about the most traumatic, exhilarating and emotionally draining I have ever known in my political life. Yet, I still feel invigorated, hopeful and optimistic about ...
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Darling accuses Salmond of losing the plot

Darling accuses Salmond of losing the plot | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
SPEAKING at the Labour conference, Darling claimed the First Minister's suggestion that there could be a parliamentary route to independence was "dangerous".
Peter A Bell's insight:

Darling and Lamont appear to be competing to see which of them can be the most vacuous and hypocritical. Darling seems dumbly unaware that there are political routes to independence other than by way of a referendum. And he says that the people of Scotland are sovereign whilst heading a campaign dedicated to denying that sovereignty.


Lamont, meanwhile, mouths an endless stream of platitudes about "change" having spent the entire referendum campaign fighting to preserve the old order and the old ways. And she disingenuously claims to want power for the people having sided with the ruling elites of the British state against the biggest popular movement in Scotland's history.


These people make me sick.

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Better Together Campaign Chief: We Would Have Struggled To Win Without "Scaremongering"

Better Together Campaign Chief: We Would Have Struggled To Win Without "Scaremongering" | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
He said the campaign’s own research showed negative tactics worked
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Tory MPs turn crackpot and adopt crackpot BNP policy on English Parliament

Tory MPs turn crackpot and adopt crackpot BNP policy on English Parliament | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
(not satire - it's the Tories!) The biggest supporters of an English parliament used to be the far-right skinheads of the neo-nazi British National Party and the equally crackpot English Democrats....
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The going of Alex Salmond | Snowblog | Snowblog

The going of Alex Salmond | Snowblog | Snowblog | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

We might have been sitting in an undertaker’s waiting room. Something was afoot. You could have cut the air with a knife.

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Here's how an independent Scotland could still happen - in 8 steps

Here's how an independent Scotland could still happen - in 8 steps | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
We might have had a ‘No’ vote in last week’s Scottish independence referendum, but the political crisis which is following it means the nationalists’ cause isn’t dead in the water just yet.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Why is the British press only now realising - or admitting - the inevitable consequences of the British parties' behaviour throughout the referendum campaign.

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Leader: Yes movement has power to shape Scotland

Leader: Yes movement has power to shape Scotland | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
IN A timely and important column in this newspaper today, former SNP frontbencher Andrew Wilson calls on the Nationalists and their colleagues in the wider Yes movement to engage with new efforts to secure more powers for Holyrood “as builders, not wreckers”.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Is this the first time The Scotsman has acknowledged "the wider Yes movement"? Looks very much like they are trying to retrieve some of the credibility they lost during the campaign.


IT'S TOO BLOODY LATE!

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Lloyds still considering leaving Scotland despite No vote

Lloyds still considering leaving Scotland despite No vote | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
One source said Lloyds would continue to consider the issue as Westminster and Holyrood hammer out the terms of increased devolution to Scotland.
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Darling's 'disgust' at ugly scenes

Darling's 'disgust' at ugly scenes | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
ALISTAIR Darling yesterday distanced Better Together from the ugly clashes in Glasgow's George Square, insisting those involved were not connected to the anti-independence campaign.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Alistair Darling chose to associate himself with these British nationalist thugs when he agreed to be the front-man for their vile, intolerant cause. He won't free himself of the stink of this association with a couple of squirts of political Febreeze.

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Senior party figures back Nicola Sturgeon SNP leadership bid

Senior party figures back Nicola Sturgeon SNP leadership bid | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Ms Sturgeon has not yet said if she will put herself forward for the post of SNP leader and first minister
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We have witnessed a total breakdown in political legitimacy

We have witnessed a total breakdown in political legitimacy | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Our current relief is the product of lowered expectations. Without the fortnight which preceded it, last night's Scottish independence referendum result would be seen for what it is: an appalling breakdown of political legitimacy.

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'We Couldn't Have Designed A Worse Fucking Campaign'

'We Couldn't Have Designed A Worse Fucking Campaign' | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
On Monday morning, I bumped into a senior member of the shadow cabinet, who was standing with a pair of aides to Ed Miliband at Euston station, all of them clutching trolley bags. "We're off to save the union," said the shadow minister, wit...
Peter A Bell's insight:

Only those looking at Scotland's referendum campaign through the distorting lens of the British media imagine that Gordon Brown was a significant player. So-called journalists regurgitate the overblown hagiographies supplied to them by Brown's media manipulators apparently totally convinced that they are providing some uniquely perspicacious insight into Scotland's politics. They are embarrassingly wrong. But evidently content to be so.

These are the same fools who hear Cameron say that the union has been saved "for a generation" and accept this as unchallengeable fact for no better reason that it has oozed from the lying mouth of a senior British politician. Just as it never occurred to these self-appointed expert commentators and analysts to question any of the propaganda pumped out by the British state in the course of the referendum campaign, so they don't think to challenge the received wisdom of their treasured highly-placed sources.

Unsurprisingly, those sources take advantage of the fawning deference afforded them by indolent hacks who will guzzle whatever titbits are offered to them and then spit these out onto the mainstream media untasted and undigested.

There is a reality to which these self-styled political correspondents remain blind due their insistence on looking to London to see what is happening in Scotland. That reality is that membership of pro-independence parties in Scotland has soared in the few days since the referendum. Far from disintegrating in the face of defeat, the Yes campaign continues to grow and develop. Demand for another referendum is growing apace and will soon become irresistible. And all of this is happening with London-based journalists even being aware of it.

It is not only British Labour that needs to learn lessons from Scotland's independence referendum campaign. The British media should also be taking a long hard look at itself. But we all know that isn't going to happen.

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