Sunday, November 22, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Saturday 28 November 2009
10.30 – 6.00 @ Out of the Blue
As the plans for a referendum on Scottish independence are announced a gathering looking at why we need a Yes vote and what are the positive visions for an independent Scotland?
Media, Communication and the Union 11.00 – 12.30
Pat Kane on The Democratic Interact: the challenges of social media to Scottish Self -Determination. Pat is a musician, blogger, author, columnist and has been involved in the politics of independence from Scotland United days. More at The Play Ethic.
Joe Middleton on Why Scottish Independence Matters. Joe is a member of the Scottish National Party, the creator of the Scottish Independence Guide website and Press Officer of Independence First, the referendum campaign.
Shona McAlpine on We Can’t Win It Without Them – Enthusing the Under 30s. Shona McAlpine is an SNP activist and manages the Scottish Independence Convention’s website. Professionally she is a Secondary Computing teacher and has also been a nightclub and bar manager.
Peace & Alternative Futures 1.00 – 3.00 pm
Janet Fenton on How Scottish Women Might Disarm the UK Government. Janet started co-ordinating the Edinburgh Peace & Justice Centre after lots of political, feminist theatre, community arts and direct action, and a few years with a community eco-shop/gallery/drop-in project in Portobello.
Justin Kenrick on Self-determination as an assertion of interdependence: restoring resilience to communities, societies and ecosystems. Justin teaches at the Sustainability Institute at St Andrews University and is the co-ordinator of the Holyrood 350 Campaign.
Economics and Outlook with Scottish Left Review & Our Kingdom 3.30 – 5.30 pm
Gerry Hassan on The End of Britain. Gerry is the author of The Modern SNP from Protest to Power (EUP) and is a columnist for Our Kingdom
Robin McAlpine on Imagined Futures. Robin is editor of Scottish Left Review and co-author of Is There a Scottish Road to Socialism?
This event is free – all welcome.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The latest (and hopefully the best!) Glasgow North East by-election video. It took me a long time to get this version uploaded, if you like it then please pass on the link.
Video description: It's decision time in the Glasgow North East by-election. After 74 years of Labour the voters have a chance to vote for a change. The Scottish National party (SNP) have an articulate and talented candidate in David Kerr. Will Thursday be a great step forward for Scotland? Let's hope so.
Posted by Joe Middleton at 11:07 PM
Monday, November 09, 2009
What do the numbers 74 and 59 have to do with the Glasgow North East by-election? Who is David Kerr and what do the SNP stand for? What is the difference between Labour and Tories? Who is best for Glasgow? Who is best for Scotland? All these questions are answered in less than six minutes with the Scottish Independence Guide's overview of the Glasgow North East by-election. (The film uses existing TV footage of the candidates and SNP leader Alex Salmond).
Posted by Joe Middleton at 12:46 PM
Saturday, November 07, 2009
The decision of the voters in Glasgow North East will have long lasting implications for the cause of Scottish independence. Glasgow can do better than Labour's Baron Springburn and the SNP deserve their chance to represent the constituency at the UK parliament.
Scotland's party puts Scotland first and a vision of a free and independent country is a lot bettter than sticking with failed bankrupt Britain with it's divide 'n' rule policies and xenophobic attitudes fixed firmly in the past!
Monday, November 02, 2009
Letter to the Editor
Your correspondent David Maddox's article on Friday claimed that the SNP have ditched their referendum proposal. Nationalists 'give up' on 2010 referendum (31/10/2009). He has not one attributable quote in support of this but says 'senior figures' have revealed this to him. On the eve of a Liberal Democrats conference specifically to discuss the SNP's proposals is obviously the logical time for high up SNP members to express inner reservations about them! The Evening News recycled the same rubbish: SNP abandons hopes for independence poll (31/10/09).
Today Mr Maddox imagines that the SNP are considering a property based alternative to their local income tax 'E-mail hint of SNP's plans for property tax' (02/11/09).
His 'evidence' for this is that civil servants are currently comparing different types of local taxes. Naturally a desperate Labour spokesman, Iain Gray, their party leader in Scotland, is quick to hoover up this crumb of comfort declaring: "This is not only a sign of the SNP's hypocrisy and incompetence but a complete shambles."
The SNP Government itself explained the obvious: "The request made was for the purpose of assessing other parties' proposals, it is not a government proposal." They add: "There is no question of this government considering any reform to local taxation other than the introduction of a fairer local tax, based on the ability to pay."
In fact the SNP is still firmly in favour of both an independence referendum and a Local Income Tax. Even although the Scotsman has been campaigning for some time for the SNP to drop LIT, they have not actually done so.
Not one other paper is likely to pick up these 'stories' because they are not true news stories at all! The first 'story' on the referendum is pure invention, deliberately timed to undermine the SNP case and encourage the Liberal Democrats. The second is almost as silly and irrelevant as it contains not a shred of evidence that the SNP are actually planning any change whatsoever in their LIT policy.
There needs to be a clear distinction between reporting the news and inventing it. The Scotsman newspaper might have a legitimate difference of opinion with the SNP Government on many issues, obviously the paper has a right to indicate this and to campaign on these issues.
Nonetheless however the SNP are our elected Government and deserve some level of respect. The Scotsman newspaper has no right or remit to invent new Government policy and it should avoid pretending that an imminent political change by the SNP is in prospect without an attributable quote to that effect.
Labour have changed their policy position on an independence referendum on a number of occasions. The SNP however have been politically consistent in demanding a vote on independence. A change in that position would indeed be newsworthy but it hasn't actually happened.
We can hardly complain about a lack of trust in our politicians if newspapers are allowed to invent a new policy position for them ever week!