By Another Road

This is ridiculous. There’s even more going on now the referendum’s decided. And I wanted a rest…

In no particular order, my thoughts are that whatever action now follows, it can’t suggest the referendum wasn’t decisive and is somehow irrelevant because of any amount of excuses like ballot-rigging, last-minute offers and failure to deliver retrospectively.

This is a miserly response to a democratic process and runs counter to the simultaneous claim that this was a celebration of democracy which was an honour for Scotland. If it is an event to be proud of, we can’t carp about losing.

It doesn’t matter that the over-65s won it – their vote counts the same as anyone else’s. Whatever their motivations, be it personal security, lack of charity or shrivelled belief in country, they are entitled to vote accordingly.

In any campaign the trick is to win over enough voters to your side and clearly Yes didn’t do that so for the foreseeable future, the game is over. I would have claimed independence with a single vote more than No and disregarded any Unionist moans about Salmond claiming there would be no post referendum difficulties or claims of unfair funding or whatever. As far as we can see into the future, independence is off the board and the game has changed.

That doesn’t mean though that Alex Salmond is wrong to point out that a referendum is merely one route. New Zealand springs to mind in context as it had no formal process to sovereignty – it merely acquired more powers from London as the years went by until it was agreed it was effectively independent. There is no New Zealand Independence Day because nobody knows the date it happened.

The reaction to Salmond is interesting because it shows how worried the Unionist establishment is by the continuing movement. Instead of ignoring him or laughing at his remarks following a referendum win, Johann Lamont reacted angrily showing just how defensive she remains despite victory.

Accepting the result and agreeing to work in the best interests of Scotland is one thing. But forgiving the systematic mendacity and connivance with the Tories, UKIP and big business to crush what we now see to be the hopes of mainly working class Scots, is quite another. No sooner had Willie Bain called for reconciliation than people were tweeting how their elderly parents had been told by him they would lose their pensions if they voted Yes. It is now the narrative of the referendum that Labour sacrificed the rights of its own natural support in order to maintain the British state. Margaret Curran overseeing a party inquiry into why voters deserted them is just an insult to the Labour movement. It is another bureaucratic manoeuvre to pretend to be doing something – like making the Holyrood leader the ‘leader of all Scottish Labour’.

The truth is that Labour deserted its own people and has paid the price. It isn’t the voters who need to be questioned, it’s the Labour leadership. The story I read about the Curran initiative was placed just above a headline which read: ‘Balls to keep Tory cap on child benefit.’ Go figure, Margaret.

There is a determination among the payroll politicians of Unionism to make this whole period disappear into history. They have been deeply disturbed by having the agenda removed and having to deal with an organic and committed opposition that doesn’t fit the norm. For me this is one of the main reasons to keep going – the old failed hegemony has broken down and the Yes parties are already combining along with the grassroots into a radical opposition to the way Scotland is run.

Unionists can’t seriously suggest that everyone divest themselves of the dream of independence just because of the referendum result. After all, Labour voters didn’t stop voting Labour because the Tories won the election. And if the early unions had given up when first confronted by the bosses, there wouldn’t be trades unions today and there wouldn’t be a Labour Party.

Harnessing the energy will be a longer process because it will and has burst out in different forms and ideas which will have to coalesce and find sustainable shape if it is not all to be lost. I argue that Yes should maintain an administrative heart so everyone can stay connected – I think it can be paid for by the Yes parties. Yes should redefine what it stands for which for me has to be all powers below the level of a separate state. We would call it Devo Max and, bizarrely, it is on the agenda because of the wrong use of the term by London-based Unionists (including the ill-informed BBC) and because of a failure of the political parties to define what they meant when they panicked two weeks before voting.

It is perfectly possible I think that with the mood in England darkening, that serious powers could now come to Scotland just to stop another insurrection while the rest of the UK also benefits from enhanced devolution. And that would mean a serious reduction of MPs going to Westminster, the obvious democratic quid pro quo which also leaves Labour hoist by its own petard.

The nutty hyperbole of Gordon Brown talking about effective federalism has entered mind of the ignorant English media and is gradually being given form in the political debate. This is constitutional reform by osmosis and I’m not even sure the London classes know what they’re doing.

Far from settling the question, the referendum has produced more chaos than ever and we must not let it settle.


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155 thoughts on “By Another Road

  1. All true Derek and you, as usual, have managed to put my thoughts into print. Except the bit about Devo max. How does such fudge give Scotland an ethical foreign policy we can be proud of and how does it get rid of the illegal, obscene and wasteful weapons situated near our major city?

    • Look, we absolutely have to get rid of this Devo Max crap. It is far, far too woolly and weasely a concept, it is a trap.

      Let’s state plainly that what we want is

      1. recognition of the permanence of the Scottish Parliament

      2. full fiscal and legislative autonomy, (leaving aside defence and foreign policy to the UK).

      They are mainly worried about their permanent seat on the security council. Let them have it, I don’t care. But as UK’s weapons justifying this are based on our territory this should be an Anglo-Scottish representation.

      • It is totally and simply about OIL. It all means NOTHING unless Scotland has ANY chance of access to a proportion of the oil revenue. Sine qua non.

      • I can’t agree unless federalism is just a staging post to full independence. The worst policy areas to leave to Westminster are defence and foreign affairs. These policy areas brought us the invasion of Iraq, the occupation of Afghanistan and, of course, nuclear weapons. We haven’t come this far to stop at federalism.

    • If you are talking control over defence and foreign policy you are talking full sovereignty not Devo Max.

    • daftladdie – I agree with you about Devo max. It is a fudge. But I don’t think that Derek is saying that Devo max would be his ideal choice. It’s just the best we can hope for any time soon. And the point is that as it is not really defined at the moment, but the term is widely used, there is an opportunity for those of us who support full independence to define it. And we should define it as the fullest possible devolution of powers short of being an independent state because Westminster will not allow that – and they have a mandate for that refusal.

      • @Richard Scott

        Agree. Very good post. We propose Devo max, we define it (all powers short of defence, a few taxation powers, foreign policy, Trident), and then see what Westminster does. If they reject it we can say to the people of Scotland that they have reneged on their promises, and this then has consequences for the future. If we get it, then we are looking at a substantially stronger Scottish Parliament.

        • For me, Devo Max means independence, less a few powers.

          We should start with that position and then we should choose which powers WE want to give to Westminster.

          We mustn’t let the Westminster parties define it and give us scraps.

          We may have lost the vote on Thursday but that doesn’t mean we sit back and wait. We need to demand the maximum, short of full independence. Full Fiscal Autonomy would do.

        • Good reply – surely demanding DMax is a way of getting more people engaged (more than the 45%) – and when inevitably a diluted DMax, if any, is offered, many Nos will be furious and will reject Labour for one betrayal too far.

          Get behind DMax and you widen your appeal – and as research apparently showed that the more arguments people were given – on both sides – the more they inclined towards Yes this seems effective going forward.

          DMax as a second bite at reaching the many who shut themselves out of the referendum arguments, feeling alienated for many reasons, and could not be reached.

          Speaking from experience in Catalonia, this may be a hard time to get through, post-effort and pre-reorganisation, with no apparent focus and many dropping away. But the convinced must stick it out and energy will come back.

    • We are now in no position to do anything about foreign policy and Trident because we did not get over 50 per cent. That ship, or nuclear submarine, has sailed for the time being.

  2. Where there is constitutional crisis may we bring powers to Scotland …

  3. I accept the numbers but I do not accept the result, because terrorising pensioners that they are going to lose their banks and their pensions is not a fair way of winning. If the No campaign had fought a positive campaign then I would accept that most people simply felt British and wanted to remain. But in fact the results of Lord Ashcroft’s very detailed poll of over 2000 voters showed that whilst amongst the Yes voters, the issue stated by 70% as their principle reason for voting for independence was the principle of self-determination, and only 20% stated it was because they thought we would be better off, amongst No voters only 27% said that affection for the UK was their principle reason for voting against ‘separation’. For most No voters, the principle reason for voting No, stated by nearly 50%, was that they feared what would happen with banks, currency, EU, pensions, and did not think that Scotland could survive without the UK.

    This to my mind shows conclusively that the Union is held together by lies and fear, and little else. The over 65s were not to know that they were such a large section of the electorate, at nearly 1 million voters, so at 85% turnout that means approximately 850,000 voted and thus 630,000 No votes (since 73% voted No), and their unfounded fears have set back the cause of progressive politics for a generation. I am not blaming the pensioners, who had little access to more critical information and who as a generation have a greater deference to authority, but Project Fear which exploited this and tormented them.

    A vote taken under duress is not a reliable indication of will.

    • Thank you MBC for the break down of the vote. I totally agree, Project Fear won and therefore the result was not democratically attained as it was based on misinformation.

    • Re. pensioners, also think postal votes – the same cohort?

      What did people learn about Glenrothes? Possibly that some parties take people in the social shadows seriously (they didn’t show in the SNP predictions machine), and have plans for them, others just treat them as people to be convinced, which is all very nice, but many pensioners for example live cut off from normal social intercourse, and crucially, from the Internet.

      Can you blame Labour, if it really is them, for refining a tool they have used to perfection before, when others who should know better let them do it. Has there been real concern and research re. postal voting and its use and users, serious outreach to pensioners etc.?

      • I just don’t buy the idea of vote rigging to the tune of 400,000 votes. A few thousand at the very most. The numbers are clear, it was a No. But it was obtained through fear, and not only is that unethical, but it is not a reliable indication of political will.

  4. The referendum sought to determine the will of the Scottish people.

    For the result to be valid, the process had to be fair.

    It was most certainly not fair, largely due to the nefarious activities of the BBC, STV, and other media outlets.

    The vote may not have been rigged (?), but the entire process certainly was.

    I therefore will not accept that the result was valid.

  5. No rest for the wicked, Mr B.
    The so called ‘baby boomers’ seem to have run true to form and made their decision purely on what would be in their own interests, and with the sense of entitlement that they have had since they were spoiled rotten in the fifties and sixties by their poor parents who had suffered the slings and arrows of the war. Don’t expect them to think of anyone else but number 1. I had enough conversations with them in the past to know that they actually scorn their own country and laugh at the thought of its independence. So there you are, I’ve denounced them.
    Labour has become a party of the British State. They no longer oppose the toffs but colluded with them to maintain the Union. They did what they were told by their Lords and Masters at Westminster and it’s only a matter of time before Darling and Brown ascend the staircase at the palace to receive their Knighthoods.
    I hear jack Straw is calling for further attempts at ‘breaking up the Union’ to be made illegal, and Tesco seems to be having a problem today. You couldn’t make it up.

    • Sorry, not buying this. If every other age group had voted in the high 50s instead of the low 50s it would have cancelled out the pensioners. 18-24 year old voted No.

      • MBC, according to the Ashcroft poll EVERY age group voted YES except the over 55s. The 18-24 were a smaller YES than the groups on either side, but they DID vote YES.

        • EDIT: MBC, I have now seen a different illustration of Ashcrofts results in the Guardian which indeed now show the 18-24 group as NO voters. So, correction to my last post.

          As to why, I have as yet no idea.

          • Although Ashcroft polled 2000 individuals, not every age group was well represented. He polled 488 over 65s, so the figure of 73% voting No is probably reliable – but only 17 individuals aged 16-17! Therefore this sample is not sufficient to be a reliable indication. Amongst those 17 individuals 71% had voted Yes. The big issue for this group was the prospect of free university.

            My guess is that the numbers polled in the 18-24 age group was small and not a reliable sample.

            However, polls have been saying for some time that this group were negative about independence.

            I can only offer my own experience when I was that age as an explanation. Young people want to be cool, be glamorous. They are inclined to be ashamed of their parents, their shabby provincial circumstances.

            Then they grow up a bit, start to appreciate there are some virtues in their ain folk, and start asking, why is the world so ill divided?

          • Those I spoke to during canvassing were mainly College students who had been convinced by Labour that their places had been cut and that the SNP were against free education.
            I think the Yes campaign probably took their understanding too much for granted!

      • Bugger (the Panda)


        Can’t find the Monkton exit poll but I think that the you did vote yes in a majority.

        Two things killed the YES, the over 65s and the postal vote, 70% of 30% of votes = 21% total votes so, NO just needed to take just over 40% of the poll on the day.

      • MBC we are all hurt by the vicious attacks on our peaceful YES campaign by the MSM and a totally corrupt Westminster. I am a pensioner who campaigned in 1979 and 1997 and again for the referendum last week. I have to admit that this time most of my age group and older wouldn’t even listen to a case for YES. Don’t ask me what is wrong with them, as I have no idea, but I am ashamed that the oldies have queered the pitch for the young to reclaim our country.
        Rather than squabble among ourselves we have to keep up the momentum to achieve independence by whatever means we are able to use.

        • I canvassed quite a few oldies and found they had closed minds. One guy desperately wanted to voteYes but all his conditioning steered him in the other direction. Nothing I could say could convince him. He kept returning to all the old shibboleths of learned helplessness. Scottish cringe. It was awful to witness how deeply ingrained this was. Others were tribal Labour and voted No out of automatic hatred of the SNP and Alex Salmond. Quite a few were entrenched British Unionists. I think it has to do with identity in the end. My grandfather voted Labour all his life but in the last election of his life he voted SNP, because at heart he was a Scot, and the SNP were by that stage becoming a credible electoral force.

    • I have worked for and supported Scottish independence for over half a century, before all you recent converts to the cause were even born. It was hard enough, in days gone by, to deflect and subsume the vitriol of Unionists, and keep on working to keep the wee small flame alive, but now we are also being attacked by fellow Yes supporters, and I have given up. We don’t deserve to be an independent country when we attack our own long-standing supporters.You have managed to sideline and alienate a whole sector of the electorate, so well done, you.
      I will not actively support any future campaign. I will never vote again in any election. So, thank you for adding to the pain of knowing that I will die as a free Scot in an un-free Scotland

      • @Pam

        Who are you referring to?

        • I’m afraid Pam seems to be very fragile and said something similar on WoS before the 18th, so if she wants to give up, then she is one vote lost.
          I would concentrate on the folk who are still with us.

          BTW the negativity to one group or another could easily be orchestrated by the divide and rule mob.

      • Pam it isn’t the yes side that came out with the statement that the over 55’s voted no it was Ashcroft and the unionist media.You can’t blame the under 55’s for feeling like the older generation their Grand parents had abandoned them to poverty and hopelessness and of course in the heat of the moment when people are a bit raw they lash out. I am from Edinburgh and we feel the same as you the rest of Scotland thinks “All they snobs in Edinburgh voted no” when the reality is 40% voted yes. The result was just as much as a shock and disappointment to us as well. Don’t give up we are rebuilding the Yes campaign in a different way, no longer can we go back to the old tribal politics of before or we will have lost probably for a generation, remember as the saying goes a week is a long time in politics what about a year? there will be plenty for the unionists parties to occupy their minds with a general election just around the corner and they will go back to being like three ferrets in a sack attacking each other.What we must do is identify the true enemy in Scotland and that is the labour party they did the Tories bidding they must be the ones made to pay for their lies and deceit and if we the 1.68 million stick together and keep in touch we can defeat them thus leaving no opposition to do the Tories dirty work. We all know they will renege on their promise of real extra powers and what we will get is some watered down nonsense not worth the paper it is written on.This is the time to stay strong they want us to feel the way you do turning on each other or hiding away we are not the ones who were sold a pig in a poke it was the no voters and when a good many of them realise it they will say enough is enough too.So come back don’t let harsh words said in the heat of the moment put you off from your life’s dream which is to see our country independent.

      • Don’t give up Pam. Nobody is blaming all pensioners, only Noes. Wear your Yes badge with pride. I am not ‘blaming’ pensioners per se I am merely trying to analyse what happened because of an unusually large demographic. And I stick by what I said, that if everybody else had voted Yes in greater numbers it would have cancelled out the pensioner vote. I don’t think younger age groups voting 52% is anything to shout about. OK, better than 27%, but not exactly resounding, is it? All age groups need to make converts. I don’t think the young have anything to be smug about!

    • Some of us in this age group are finding this constant demonisation a big turn off. Many of us have fought since Winnie Ewing’s 1967 Hamilton win for independence, and to be slagged off like this is, to say the least, extremely disappointing. You are in danger of losing more of that age group and others by this tactic.

      Agree with MBC, if other groups had been more positive in their support then those older folk who did vote No would have been cancelled out. This is not the time to alienate folk, especially those on the Yes side. It’s time to come together. Please think before you continue with this line.

      • It can’t be a question of blaming groups that seemed to vote No – it should be a question of analysing why they voted no and trying to find out how best to reach them in the future.

        Obviously older people had been targeted by No for various reasons, but probably the main one is that as a demographic they overall were more likely to rely solely on MSM for their news and information.

        Therefore any Devo Max proposals we make should include devolution of broadcasting to Scotland – especially public service broadcasting.

        • Agreed – what we must not do is fall into a trap of assuming that because someone falls into a particular age category, then we know how they voted and blame them for the outcome. That is not the sort of Scotland that I want to live in. Remember that even with the over 65s, 1 in 4 voted Yes.

          And people are not bad people because they voted a different way from you. We need to persuade people who voted No – if we demonise them they will entrench in their position. I know that’s what I would do. When you are called a Nazi because you support independence, does that make you change your mind and vote No? It certainly doesn’t work on me. Why would calling older people names for the way they voted make them change their minds?

          • The blame game is exactly what the Brit Imperials would like us to play – they would love us to dissipate our energy instead of focusing it. This may even be why Ashcroft published this poll. In our house we are in the over 65 group, as are a good percentage of our local YES movement, so let’s not get into name calling.

            I will need to think about Derek’s point, but I certainly do not accept that the referendum was in any way shape or form fair, for reasons that others have stated in this and other threads. Calm reflection on our strategy is required in order to determine the next steps, not knee jerk reaction to a defeat by the Dark Side of the British Imperial state.

    • Well, that’s a sweeping statement, isn’t it? I’m one of those so-called baby boomers that you speak of and I worked tiredlessly for a YES throughout the campaign. I am nearly 69 and am proud to be called a 45er, and I will continue to campaign until my dying day. At my age I possibly won’t feel any personal benefit from an Independent Scotland … but my children and grandchildren will, and that’s enough motivation for me.

      • My point is that every age group under 55 except the 18-24 year olds did vote Yes but hardly in startling numbers! 50%, 52%, etc, but nothing exceptional. If their votes had been nearer to 60% they would have cancelled out the over 65s.

        Plus, Ashcroft’s poll of 16-17 year olds was based on only 17 individuals! So a result of 71% is not reliable for this group!

        I know lots of over 65s who were ardent Yeses (many of them veterans who kept the indy flame alive in the hard, dark, days) so let’s not get in to a blame game, eh?

    • Just for the record – DO NOT tar every baby boomer with the same brush. I and many other over 60’s voted for independence and as people who still hold the dream of independence will keep speaking out in whatever way we can.

    • Viking Girl, steady on, stereotypical criticisms of “baby boomers” (horrible term) or any other group is a poor way to go forward and unite Scots behind their country.

  6. I agree, Derek. It’s not only unfair but cruel to bash any older folk for voting No, for whatever reason they chose to vote No. Their reasons are their own, and if any of them were scared stiff by the stories being fed to them by the No campaign, then to add to that fear by having a go at them is out of order. There were elderly people stockpiling food because they were convinced there would be food shortages, and others terrified that they would lose their pensions. Many will have been afraid of change. We need to back off.

    As for this “so tell me, ex-Labour voter / supporter / member, why did you vote Yes” is something Labour should have been able to gauge well before the referendum if they had the slightest understanding of the image they presented of themselves to the public. Taking supporters and members for granted was a huge no-no and I hope those going round asking the question will be told to mind their own businesses.

    Anyway. Have given my Saltire a good scrub down and it’s ready to fly again. Incidentally, we are in greater need than ever of decent broadcasting services, so alongside the moves to try and get control over Scottish Broadcasting via the BBC (spit), what might be your thoughts about extending to a broader radio / television network funded by an umbrella Indy alliance? Unless I’ve missed any conversation about this and am a bit behind. Speaking only for myself, I’d be very happy to pay a decent subscription for that, knowing that the money would be used to pay you and others plus the set up and running costs. With a million and a half Yes voters …..


    • And what happened to the Yes vote in the SNP heartlands?

      • Yes, I’ve been mulling that one. Never mind age-groups, many SNP voters must have voted No.

        If I was living in Scotland, that would switch on a red light about the next elections and possible shock backlash for the SNP unless people stop assuming they can count on an SNP “majority”.

        Was the SNP majority in Scotland just a protest vote, was the No vote in SNP country the rich voting against the poor? Was it because, in reality, the SNP homelands are deeply conservative? Just how strong are Labour in UK elections? Will the referendum result swing unedxpected changes? Insecurity in the heart of the SNP majority? Food for thought.

        • The White Feather Club?

        • lastchancetoshine

          For many (maybe half) in those “Heartlands” a vote for the SNP is a vote against labour, they would vote con if they thought they had a chance of winning. They are however more comfortable doing so having seen a more able administration.

          I do fear a slip though, as they slowly realise the SNP has moved to the left of Labour.

  7. Wasnt convinced i would get over thursday but seeing the continuation of the fight by yourself , wings etc is slowly getting me up, big thankyou for that. I am not interested in devo anything i want independence, just like over one and a half million of my brothers and sisters.

  8. The situation can change rapidly and opportunities can arise unexpectedly, but the likelihood is that in the short term (over the next year or so) we will be looking at “holding Westminster’s feet to the fire” and seeking a true Devo Max/FFA settlement for Scotland in conjunction with a just solution to England’s “democratic deficit”. The political arithmetic requires that for this to take place the Labour Party in Scotland must be destroyed.

    I too accept that the vote last week was an expression of the will of folk in Scotland. There is still much work to be done in order to win over the twenty percent or more who voted No but are still open to persuasion., but it will be easier to do once we have proved to the doubters that we can manage a country successfully with full tax and spend powers. In short, the dream has been delayed but not abandoned.

    • Well I don’t. I accept the figures, but not the result. In a court of law evidence obtained from an intimidated witness would not be accepted as valid.

      However I agree there is probably little point at this stage in challenging the result or asking for a re-run.

      But there is still a lot of point in arguing forcefully that it was a result obtained by forms of duress which are a disgrace in any democracy.And hence hold their feet to the fire by this.

  9. We only lost the referendum by the equivalent of four home gates at Ibrox, 800,000 didn’t vote at all including 25% of Glasgow. Anyway we must put this behind us and strategise for the future. We know the size of our army now, 1.6 million came out for the cause, Scotland is politically energised once more and an incompetent Westminster is going to make big mistakes. Another referendum is not desired, what we need to do is follow the parliamentary method now for the next three years… score the hat trick: GE2015, SE2016 and SLE2017, an SNP majority under a YES Alliance (with the Greens, SSP and Labour for Indy) in all areas of government can trigger Unilateral Declaration of Independence or Full Fiscal Autonomy under Scotland’s terms by 2017. The campaign don’t need to be tubthumping or expensive, just a consensus of moving people and votes to achieve the percentage swings to purge Westminster from Scotland.

    • Absolutely agree. No more rigged referendums. YES Alliance to annihilate Labour Party in Scotland, just as SNP annihilated Tories in Scotland. Mandate for UDI. Take back what is ours.

  10. Refreshing to see a reasonable and rational reaction to the result from a yes supporter like yourself Derek. Best for everyone that the result is accepted, Scotland remains in the UK and we move on and work together to improve this country. I don’t like the whole “45%” movement as I find it divisive when we should be coming together again. Interested in your thoughts on this grouping?

    • You want Scotland to go back to sleep. Sorry, we’re wide awake and refusing to go into hibernation. Winter Is Coming for the UK; not Scotland. We, i.e all Scots, do not accept the lies and propaganda by BT, BBC & press as a contest won fair & square. Against such odds, achieving 45% was, itself, a miracle. But the Labour fools have been given enough rope to hang themselves (by the sleekit Tories & Libdems) and the clock is ticking. Brown & Darling promised 100% of Scots DEVOMAX & HOMERULE, at the 11th hour before their own execution. When these deathbed induced promises are forsaken, the public outrage will be an unstoppable tsunami force, sweeping all before it. We, the united 100% of Scotland, are binding our time for now. The jury is out. WE all know the jury is rigged but we await their expected verdict with dignity. We all know that the UK is on death row, the only question is; how long does this reprieve last? And the Orange Order rioting in Glasgow at the weekend? They are simply the screws’ trusties & gophers. Tick-tock, UK, tick-tock.

  11. The detailed breakdown in Lord Ashcroft’s poll is very interesting – see

    There is clearly an age-related time bomb now ticking under the Westminster union if all those Scots who voted YES continue to harbour a desire for Scotland to become an independent country.

    The overwhelming reason voters gave for voting YES (70%) was “The principle that all decisions about Scotland should be taken in Scotland”.

    45% also thought there would be another indy referendum within 5 years.

  12. Home By another Way
    Maybe you and me can be wise guys too and
    Go home by another way.
    Keep a weather eye on the charts on high
    But Herod is always out there
    He’s got our cards on file,
    If we give an inch
    Herod likes to take a mile
    So we’ll go home by another way
    We can make it by another way
    Safe Home as they used to say,
    Home by anotherway.

    James Taylor lyrics

  13. YES supporters should punish Westminster by using their collective strength to rid Scotland of every single Westminster unionist MP at the May 2015 UK General election.

    The Tories are almost gone anyway, the LibDems’s are lined up already to go, and the Westminster Labour party are ripe for extinction after their betrayal of Scotland in the referendum campaign.

    Thereafter YES supporters should campaign at every opportunity at local and Holyrood elections to get rid of every single unionist there too.

    Then there is the European referendum where they should campaign to keep Scotland in Europe even if the rest of the UK votes to leave the EU.

    YES supporters can turn Scotland into a unionist free zone if they apply themselves properly to the task.

    If they do these things Scotland will become ungovernable by Westminster and it will eventually have to give in.

  14. Some months ago I wrote “for me this journey has always been about wanting to live in a better society and having what I believe to be the best democratic means of achieving that. And I always envisaged the core principle of that society would be a perpetual drive for fairness and equality”.

    Now we have failed to deliver what I believed to be “the best democratic means” but that doesn’t mean that the rest of my statement doesn’t hold true, for me at least.

    So I agree Derek – let’s not diminish everything we all stood for by arguing the toss about who voted what and why. They just did – it’s democracy and sometimes that means you lose.

    What the least advantaged people in our society deserve now is not a period of prolonged navel gazing and self-flagellation. What they need is a steeling of our resolve to gather in as much power as possible to the Scottish Parliament – fiscal and legislative – to maximise the chances of achieving the type of societal change that they (and indeed all of us) deserve.

    I agree about the need to keep Yes going in some form or other to help corral all the progressive groups who came out for independence so that that energy, vitlaity and drive can continue to be harnessed for the good of all of us.

    And savvy people like you have to a the core of it all. We need you.

    • Yes, surely one of the worst things about Scottish Labour was their apparent disappearance into the maze of opposing the SNP instead of focusing on the people who you’d think really matter for a socialist party, and working with the SNP to benefit the disadvantaged.

      Navel gazing instead of practical solutions – what could be worse. Yes should be above that.

  15. There is no reason to say continuing the fight for independence is undemocratic. We accept that on the 18th of September Scotland wanted union. Now we move forward, continue arguing and changing minds as best we can. As contexts change, promises are broken, EU referendums are lost, we will see many minds change. Then we hold a second referendum and we win. Its not ideal but you can’t give up. If you don’t accept that people can change their mind then you won’t get very far in politics.

  16. Once we all get over the severe disappointment of last week’s vote, then we have to discuss the way forward. This will take time, and campaigners need to rest and recharge their batteries. The effort put in was absolutely fantastic. A period of calm and resting allows proper reflection on why we failed to get over 50 per cent. There is nothing to be gained by blaming No voters. There is a general election very much on the horizon now, and we have to hold to account, and put pressure on the Unionist parties to deliver on their vows and promises made in the last few weeks of the referendum.

  17. Greens, Socialists, SNP should all agree to share the MPs 59 seats and just put up one candidate in that constituency. so say 19 Greens, 20 SSP & 20 SNP. Then all the YES folks vote for that one candidate at the GE in May 2015. can you imagine 59 MP’s at Westminster all campaigning for federalism & Home Rule (that’ll get Orkney & Shetland on board as we become more Liberal than the Iiberals! this 59 could also possibly be a deciding vote and hold power over all of WM, if there is a hung Parliament. Hell, I’d do it just to cleanse the Augean Stables of SLabour’s troughers like Jim (humptydumpty) Murphy, Ian (bayonet the wounded) Davidson, Gordon Brown, Alister Carmichael, Willie Rennie,Douglas & Danny Alexander etc. etc. Christ imagine the people getting rid of that bunch?! Let’s take a leaf from Better Together who joined into one force for evil and become one force for good.

  18. Derek, I agree with much of what you say, but I for one will not accept that a referendum result which has been achieved through threats (e.g. border posts) and downright lies (e.g no pound) is a shining example of the democratic process.

    Is it legitimate for one side to have quite possibly tipped the balance by making promises that they must have known (unless they really are too stupid to be in charge of a country) that they will find very difficult to keep? If you made a bargain with someone who then failed to keep their side of the deal, would you still feel obliged to keep yours? Of course, we are still in the UK where there is almost a tradition of pre-election promises to the electorate (like no re-organistion of the NHS in England) being discarded as soon as the election is over.

    I do not know if the referendum was rigged or not, but if some dictator in some other country rigs an election, do you really think that the result should just be accepted as a democratic process? Are the rules different in the UK because it is unsporting to even suggest that the British state or the Labour party (or their activists) might not be squeaky clean?

    As for people who are commenting about older people having voted No, please do not lump those of us who did vote Yes in with those who voted No just because they were scared it might affect their pension, without giving much thought of the future of young members of their family – and I do know someone who did exactly that.

  19. I’m getting increasingly irritated by the claims of vote-rigging, but I don’t agree we should simply give up on the idea of another referendum soon. We lost this one mainly because we got the right to hold a referendum before we had a movement for independence. Two and a half years simply wasn’t long enough to dispel 307 years of lies AND build a majority support for independence at the same time. However, we have the movement to build that majority now, and we shouldn’t rule out any avenue for achieving independence in the future.

    We all know the referendum was won on a lie. Several, in fact. If (“if”, ha ha!) a No vote doesn’t turn out to be what people were promised, then we have every right to demand another referendum whenever we want it. Why should those who were deceived into voting No be forced to live with their mistake for an arbitrary length of time if that 1.6 million turns into 2 million? That just encourages people to try to win referendums by any means necessary, safe in the knowledge that there’ll be no backlash from doing so.

    People voted No thinking that they were voting for a Scotland that got more powers and remained in the EU while also remaining in the UK. If we find ourselves without those powers, with our MPs neutered and an impending EU exit imposed on us by the rest of the UK, then it would be only right that we have another referendum, since the rules of the game will have changed.

    • @Doug

      I think we should seriously be considering radical land reform. Andy Wightman has said that it could mostly be carried out by using existing powers. We need to shake up institutions as well. We have no real reason not to push ahead with it now, given the independence referendum is lost (don’t frighten the horses is over for the foreseeable future). Local government could do with a shake up as well.

      • “Don’t frighten the horses is over” – damn right. Let’s scare the shit out of them now. The vested interests think they’ve saved their bacon, so let’s just prove them wrong.

        • bravo muttley79 and Doug Daniel. Radical land reform (including a Land Register) and reform of local government – I very much like the sound of that.

  20. There was blatant vote rigging. Whether people just decided to risk it or were organised is another matter but we all saw it happen.

    Are elections in Zimbabwe democratic? A free and fair vote is one thing. A vote where the entire media is under the control of the state is not democracy.

    Never stop telling people they were robbed. Never stop telling them about the fraud and never ever stop from telling them that everything that happens to Scotland is THEIR FAULT! Nobody can say they didn’t know and were not told. They refused to listen.

    • The blame culture will stop us from thinking about the task in hand. We lost iScotland, whether it was because of dirty tricks or not. If you cast your mind back (or research) the same tactics were used in ’79, it is a tory theme of divide and conquer. I’m proud that we pulled together again to achieve a devolved parliament in no less than 20 years! The nation need to pull together, re-assess the situation and see where we’re at as far as the no’s changing to YES now that there is a retraction of the promises made to them. We must learn from our experiences (we’ve had many) remember our successes and acknowledge that we’ve achieved our success together as a nation!
      Sadly, I lost a family member on Saturday, who was in a care home. In the lead up to the referendum he was not visited at all by anyone on the matter of his vote and his only source of information came from the TV, he voted no in a postal vote. It’s not that he ‘didn’t listen’ there was nobody speaking except the utter, bare faced lies paraded by the popular media. His ignorance is not his fault, it’s not even the BBC, (or other popular media) the fault is ours! We should have identified the most vulnerable in our society and made sure they were making informed decisions based on truth. I’m sure factors like literacy are germane (26.7% of adults in Scotland experience difficulty) as are many other reasons. All of these reasons should have been identified and dealt with by telling them the truth, enabling an informed decision, like you and I. Please don’t tell any voter that the outcome of the referendum, was their fault, it’s not, you are only adding to the misinformation. Your own countrymen are not the enemy, even no voters.
      Stand Strong Scotland Together!

  21. 2015 general election

    SNP just have to fight on restore Child Benefit–open goal

  22. Derek, just listened to Leslie Riddochs podcast. In it Leslie talks about independence being for a reason.
    With 1.6 people voting for a Yes would it not be possible for each person to pay £1 , receive a Yes card and set up an HQ somewhere? Leslie talks about banks and small business and the incredible talents from all walks of life , aching for change. Why can’t we organise a 2 day conference for all card holders , wanting to discuss the way forward, what our aims are , media , land reform, all the things we want to improve Scotland and how we( us, the people who live here)could go about it?
    Get business for Scotland in , explain to us , show us , we want improvement , we ‘re here willing to learn.
    The podcast also discussed banks , which before would have seemed ridiculous but if this was a project for after Independence , why not now? How to set up small businesses?
    The biggest draw back is , this 1.6 need people in positions with the nous to do it.
    We have the feet on the ground to deliver flyers to those interested , we have social media taped.
    As an umbrella group we would / could be everywhere , growing confidence and perhaps even bringing others along.
    We’ve let the great and the good of business tell us how things are run and look what happened , they wanted to bale out the minute profit was mentioned , never mind the people who work for them .
    What do you think?

    • We do need to look at further developing our own media, co-ordination between the pro-independence parties, independence supporting think tanks, projects across civic society, regular voter registration drives so that turnouts remain high etc.

    • Great idea.

      Daniel O’Carrol organised something like this in early 19th century Ireland, called the ‘Catholic Rent’ and it was enormously successful, gave the RC emancipation movement enormous clout.

  23. They’re fking laughing at us – they hacked into the local authority electoral registers, they added 250K names and stuffed the POSTAL VOTE SYSTEM (which is an open barn door to fraud) with phoney votes and that being coupled to all the English BritNats and (Scottish BritNats too for that matter) and people who are up for their holidays and all the NO campaign workers shipped in to canvass were signed up for proxy/postal votes and that explains the ridiculous 10% lead they have when we should be celebrating our victory.
    While a postal vote system continues then we can never win a referendum.

    • I agree that postal voting is more open to fraud than other methods of voting. Here in Wake County, North Carolina, we had a case last year that involved five votes. The only reason it was an issue is because the “winning” candidate only won by three votes. Until I see some credible evidence (the videos doing the rounds on the internet do not count) I think we must accept that the referendum was lost, however painful that may be.

      As for other methods of voting, I contributed to the public consultation a couple of years ago and suggested early voting, like we have in most states in the USA. Each county allows any elector to vote at any early voting site up to the Saturday before the election on the Tuesday. It can be very convenient if there is a competitive race. In NC, from 2016, it will be mandatory to produce ID to vote – everyone either has a driver’s license or can obtain a non-driver ID at minimal cost. Some states allow you to register to vote and then vote all on the same day.

    • I think it is hard to pull off fraud to the extent of 400,000 votes. I canvassed widely in Edinburgh and the result I was getting was pretty much 4:6 for No, which was exactly what transpired. So no, I don’t think there was rigging on this scale.

  24. Where did we go wrong?

    1. Anti Tory rhetoric.

    2. Debates SNP politicians should of refused all televised debates as they became the easy target of nationalism..

    3. Debating is a skill not just firing statistics important though they are.

    4. Not enough was made of the fact that the UK is NOT a democracy in any shape or form.

    5. Allowing the media to set the agenda because we have no control over any of it.

    6. Relying on activists to counter the deliberate lies being spread by the no campaign. The yes side needed to issue statements to all media outlets countering them in print and on air.

    I am sure there are plenty others and alleged vote rigging is an insult to all people involved as the SNP signed up to the EC as arbiters. The BBC was a public disgrace and they need to be told that often.

  25. Derek, how do I switch off the email alerts?

  26. Thanks Derek. I needed that as I was beginning to lose heart in Independence. Was sitting at a well known cafe where the 60 years and over frequent and shop. Looking around I thought, thinking these are the No voters, ‘Where are your dreams folk?’ How sad to be happy with so little and no vision for your country.

  27. Reform of postal voting and a Secretary of Scotland elected from Holyrood should be something else for discussion

  28. As others have said, we define devo-max. All taxation (other than VAT) and welfare, broadcasting, etc, etc. In return, and it’s a generous offer, we go halvers on oil revenues.

  29. Our enemies are not those among us who voted No. Our real problem is businesses, the super rich and the media.

    Although there is a section of the population who are beyond salvation (racists and bigots), the great majority of No voters did so for very human reasons – selfishness and cowardice but most of all ignorance. Many of them could have been reached with a free and fair media and without the malevolent hand of the money men.

    Some age groups are more susceptible to the above list of human weaknesses than others for various reasons. So, now we must find some way to “fix” the media and weaken the big money people. We must box clever. Use the system against the system. Make life as difficult as possible for our “masters” to operate. And, if we’re really clever, we can do it all in a perfectly legal manner.

    Then it should be a relatively easy matter to engage fruitfully with that section of the population who did not support us.

  30. Bugger (the Panda)

    All this analysis of demographic groups and their voting results is not about, or should no be, demonising one group or another.

    It is identifying those who who did not vote vote Yes and thus allowing us to asl ourselves why? Then we can address how we can convince them by offering more and better reasons, in more targeted methods of communication, to vote Yes next time.

    You don’t shout at people because they didn’t have the sense to buy your toothpaste brand. You ask yourself what would convince them to do so.

  31. As far as I can see none of the YES campaign is going anywhere other than straight back into the fight. Things are buzzing on line with ideas of what to do next. I like the idea of targeting the Labour seats in the 2015 election with the whole YES campaign voting for SNP as Tommy Sheridan has suggested or putting up someone from, say, Women For Independence or the Green Party unopposed by any other yessers and pouring the whole YES vote into their count. It is so important that we hold together as a single but very disparate movement and keep the energy and excitement levels up.

    If there is any backsliding on their “VOW” and we don’t get Devo Max then the whole world knows what was promised and the UK government will be seen for what it is internationally – plus those who voted NO on the strength of their VOW are going to be baying for blood.

    I actually think we are in a very strong position now. It is no longer the YES campaign that is having to answer all the questions you’ll notice. Suddenly it is the NOers that have all the explaining to do. They tried to exploit “Scotland’s Future” to cross-examine us in minute detail. We can now cross-examine every step they make – meticulously. The pressure is off us and right on top of them with the whole world looking on and really when it boils down to it they may be sleekit but they are not the brightest exactly are they. We are capable of dancing rings round them as we have already done though this was always hidden by the media. We cracked all their arguments but the media never reported that.

    Then there is all this back bench revolt stuff both on the Tory and Labour sides crying out for powers for England. Let them get their knickers in a twist – we can sit back and enjoy the spectacle while we plan our next moves in our own good time. We are definitely not going away any time soon.

    The target has to be first how much mischief can we cause in the 2015 General Election and then can we clean Labour out of Holyrood in 2016. There is still plenty to play for and we will build more and more structure on top of the YES campaign till the time is ready for it. There’s talk of producing our own newspaper and our own broadcasting service. They won their victory through control of the Media so we must “become the media”.

    I would like to see English radicals begin to pick up our torch and run with it within their country. Working people in England are every bit as badly off as us under these shites at Westminster. We have shown them what to do. It would be magic if they start to waken up and challenge the power elite the way we have done. “Come and join us pals” I would say. We are ready for the fight against the establishment whenever you want to wake up – all you folk in Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle.. that the Labour party kept going on about. They said we were turning our backs on our fellow workers – au contraire they are very welcome to join us and then we would definitely crack the power of the elite just like we crushed the poll tax when they joined our fight. Wake up radical England your time is now (or never!) we have opened the cracks for you. Our fight is for social justice why not join us?

    It could be that if Labour don’t win the 2015 General Election and radical English people see another five years with Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage in power, they will definitely pick up our torch – after all the Labour party is so right of centre now that the radical tradition in England has nowhere else to go but towards our fight with the establishment. They just need to realise our referendum was not an ethnic nationalism affair.

    I am very hopeful and even feel that this narrow victory of theirs puts us in a very strong position and them in a very weak one. If we had won by a narrow margin it was going to be a tough struggle in a poisoned atmosphere created by the NO campaign. All that fear and hate of us that they stirred up is now dissipated and would be very hard to kirn up again with any credibility – unless of course you are from the Orange Order and such like subhuman culture that appeared in George Square on Friday.

    Maybe we are actually in a better place in the end. If only the media were neutral. Our strength will grow as they faff aboot trapped in their own neo-liberal rhetoric and feed on each other like piranhas. Interesting times indeed.

    • Dunkie – all you talk of is very heavy stuff. It raises in particular 2 points for me:

      1. This stuff is so heavy that you’d surely have to think about a centralised Yes (whatever it became) group with top experts to look at constitutional questions and legal matters, composing a route to go forward that everyone could support, consolidating and coordinating policy and leadership and new and young upcomers. Etc.

      2. In particular, effectively making elections into a plebiscite may have legal implications especially if Westminster got nasty, and there’s not a few signs of this possibility. At least in Catalonia, this could raise questions of mis-use of elections, unconstitutional action, illegal behaviour or even sedition, and cause action to be taken against presumed ring-leaders or of other kinds.

      Really impressive to see people so determined, wish I was there to take part!

    • “…our referendum was not an ethnic nationalism affair.” Are you sure about that?

      Nationalism is an ideology based on the premise that the individual’s loyalty and devotion to the nation-state surpass other individual or group interests.

  32. Our real problem is businesses! Really! You do know that Business for Scotland has three thousand business members. Get real. We need the jobs and money made by businesses to enable us to run the country.

  33. As a “baby boomer” who spent 30 years in IT,I know my way around technology.
    However,that is far from the case with most people of my generation.
    Most seniors get their information from TV and newspapers which have been entirely one sided throughout the campaign.
    So,although I feel just as aggrieved as younger people about this block vote for No,I understand how it came about.
    We must try to show this group that they have been lied to and it wasn’t Alex Salmond what done it.
    We have to continue to be as disruptive to the Westminster establishment as possible,otherwise they will just ignore us.
    Glad to see so many younger folk engaged and picking up the baton.

    • YES voted for iScotland, no voted to stay in the union. Nobody voted for or against Alex Salmond, who is standing down and will no longer be taking such a public post. Salmond will be remembered but knows he is like ‘a red rag to a bull’ at Westminster, so standing down is the best and only way Scotland can move forward. The proof of the big lie is to come and that will do more, if we have fair reporting, than any campaign ever could, to effect change.

      • And what makes you think that the new SNP leader will not get the same treatment. We’ve already seen an element of “I hate that Alex Salmond and Sturgeon is just as bad” on the doorstep. SLab hatred will simply be transferred to whoever the new leader is.

        • Exactly, someone on twitter was referring to them as the worst double act since Richard and Judy.

          I think AS stepping down was the correct thing to do because he was the one who said no more referendum for 18 years – not Nicola and he will be at her side protecting and advising her.

          AS has already taken his gloves off as he is no longer FM, refusing certain papers to be at his resignation speech, insisting on choosing what reporter would be sent from the guardian – IMO not Severin – and has had a slap down letter to Torrance published in the Herald.

          AS will know how to fight dirty and he will enjoy it.
          Why should yes have to be squeaky clean when No were as dirty as it gets.
          Adding in the possibility of new powers after votes had been sent should have been illegal

        • I don’t think that’s entirely true. AS was disliked for being a smug smart arse. Nicola is a different style. She will get it for being SNP, but her personal style does not irritate.

      • lastchancetoshine

        The red Rag is used to misdirect the bull and tire it out exposing it’s weak point. (Not that I approve of bull fighting 😉 )

  34. Check out this account of our referendum from across the Atlantic. I think you will like it.

  35. Four to five weeks back I took a three day break from being on-line and watched the TV news and read the papers – most of you probably have no idea how hard it would be for anyone to come to a sensible decision based on that onslaught. Many people in Scotland do not have internet access and many only use it for shopping and social media. For many of our senior citizens in particular the propaganda will have been all too effective.

  36. Sorry Jingsandthings, I should have said “certain businesses”. And most of them big ones. You are of course correct we DEFINITELY need businesses and lots of them!

  37. ronald alexander mcdonald

    I think you should wake up and smell the roses Derek. We will get what Westminster choose to give us. We are in no position to negotiate anything, as far as they are concerned.

    We will maybe have most Income tax devolved and a few other crumbs. This I believe will make matters worse as it would put any devolved Scottish Government under huge pressure to increase tax across the board that most people can’t afford, to mitigate only some of the massive cuts to come.

    I believe it’s the cuts to the Barnett Formula as well as welfare that will really concentrate minds. To an extent the extra powers will be a red herring.

    I was shocked at the ignorance of the basic level of economics when discussing pre-referendum. I suspect this had a huge influence on the outcome. However, as @bugger stated we must find out why people voted no. I think SNP should spend time/money carrying out an in depth analysis on this, before we plan the next stage.

    Like it or not the scaremongering worked, among some anyway. With the huge cuts we could turn it on the other side. It wouldn’t be pretty but effective if we also make a positive case for a better future. Then we go for another referendum.

  38. Thomas Muir of Huntershill

    There are many ways to skin a cat. However, I can’t help feel we have been playing by WM rules. Scotland belongs to the people who live here and in this regard, we should be setting the agenda and playing to our rules and if WM don’t like it, we’ll take Scotland back whichever way we please.

  39. There is so much on this place to agree with … NEED TO BREATH AND RETHINK YES. But something’s troubling me. – OhAye. Let’s it’s the ‘see how quickly we can pull each other apart shall we’. No Voters – yeah easiest bunch to start on , obvious that we can just write them off as fools and traitors? Oh – businesses – wer can pick on them quick too because there are just obvious differences. Some businesses were so NO that they did what the Tories told them to. . No wait. It’s the old. been at it forever but – hey a lot of people are old who voted no so maybe that’s enough reason to chuck them aside and anyway the’ll all be dead and the young will take over and they voted Yes – well more of a percentage did anyway.. Hang on Trident. They always hinted that was just a bargaining chip so we’ll kick CND overboard eh? And then there’s all those newcomers. haven’t been involved for more than 5 minutes and think they own the place. 16 and 17 Year olds – women for indy maybe, or at least indygirls., LBGT, – anybody just joined the ‘movement’ and not the party. GO about wanting to try all kinds of things and thinking they should have a say. They’ll bring us down with them. They’ll be insisting we control Foreign Policy too – trying to stop illegal wars and maybe even get us out of NATO, because that’s the one thing they joined up for. Not the ones that are in the Our [fill in own party] party mind. We do own the place, and when we get what we have as policy we can chuck the other parties later. !!! GET A GRIP. If YOU KEEP ON CHUCKING FOLK OVER THE SIDE YOU’LL END UP ON YOUR OWN. We need to turn 45% into a whole lot more than 45%. I need you together for that and you need me just as much. Go figure which category of overboard you think I might be. Start with ‘seen all this before’ and work from there. But don’t ever think you can win by chucking anyone or their cherished hopes and dreams aside. We STAND TOGETHER, or we FALL APART and hey NEWSFLASH: NOBODY CAN CALL THE SHOTS ANYMORE – YOU NEED TO CARRY US ALL WITH YOU!

  40. One million pensioners scare about pensions
    500,000 folk from down south who have picked Scotland as there Home
    Thus Yes were Anti

    Look thats not rocket science
    Its the numbers game

    Yes has to admit it failed to reassure pensioners but this is also the section who feel most British
    It has learn
    With Labour making it all about Salmond
    He walked right into trap of doing just that
    With labour vote key
    More should have been used of others
    Esp from woman for independence,business for Scotland all when used slaughtered politicians

    While thousands were protesting at the BBC my area was blitzed by BT in morning and Labour in the afternoon
    Lessons have to be learned
    Labour have to be replaced
    That might not happen
    As folk will vote labour against tories in the GE they need to be educated on why this would be against Scottish aims
    There has to be a strong SNP
    Remember only Westminster can grant another Referendum
    Home rule was full fiscal control with shared defence and foreign policy

    Westminster will not give up the oil
    The Uk is bust without

    Thats the elephant in the room

  41. There is now a clear route to independence :”Vote SNP 2015 majority get independence” no ref or permission needed.

  42. Why does the devil have all the Think Tanks?

    As a reasonably well-off retiree with a final salary pension who voted Yes, I believe it was a mixture of fear, ignorance and, most of all, self-interest which drove the middle classes and over-65’s to vote No. Many have benefitted from the Thatcher/Blair/Brown legacy of tax cuts, privatisation windfalls and house price bubbles and bought into the mantra of greed and “because I’m worth it”, and being comfortably-off with money in the bank and in bricks and mortar they don’t want anyone rocking the boat. Issues like social justice, deprivation, poverty, unemployment, inequality, Trident, austerity don’t register because we are unaffected by them.

    The neo-liberals have also captured the language. The debate is phrased in their terms: “scroungers” are those at the bottom of the pile not the tax exiles and avoiders; the “something for nothing” culture is an assault on the poor and vulnerable; “hard-working families”, “strivers”; “benefits claimants” when you’re at the bottom but “tax breaks” for those at the top. And so it goes on. The Centre for Social Justice is the risibly named right wing think tank, the “brain”child of IDS. They frame the argument in their terms and we are left floundering. (when Cameron accused Labour of being the party of Welfare they could not stand up and say, Yes, because we support the vulnerable)

    We know the MSM, its journalists, executives and (often foreign) owners are part of the neo-liberal establishment. Not to mention the 3 UK parties.

    It’s the ideas, the language and the neo-lib consensus we have to fight.

    We need to set up a Think Tank which is unashamedly pro-Independence and which will counter the lies, half-truths, smears and so on from WM and its press, by producing first-class analyses in favour of independence and rebutting the establishment consensus.

    We need to blitz journalists, politicians and their fellow-travellers when they spout inaccurate, partial half-truths or downright lies by emailing them direct with corrections. We have to find a way of getting through to them personally, because they will never read blogs, forums etc.

    An Independence Think Tank could develop exemplary credentials and command respect and be a pre-eminent source for all those arguing for independence.

    • Brilliant Post . Sums up my thinking succinctly.
      Interesting today to hear Balls say today that Labour was the Party of the Working Man when previously it was the Party of the Working Class.
      Then go on and announce that Labour would outdo the Tories with future austerity measures.
      Austerity has now got a new dictionary meaning,
      Hammer the poor and vulnerable whilst ensuring filthy rich get filthier and richer.
      Many people have accused Westminster of trying to bring back Victorian Times
      I’d go further back and say they’re trying to bring back Roman Times,
      Then when the powerful got richer and more corrupt and the poor starved they used to keep the brainwashed masses entertained by feeding the poor to the lions
      Today while the powerful get richer and more corrupt and the poor starve they keep the brainwashed masses entertained by feeding the poor to Jeremy Kyle

    • Great idea. Reform Scotland was a good start, but at a glance it seems very establishment and centre-right – I may be wrong? A research-based academic responce to all the NO claims might have helped, but not very grassroots!

    • Perhaps some of the over “65s” can recognise the dangers of nationalism. Try George Orwell on the subject.

  43. Sorry, didn’t have time to read all the posts but I got the flavour of them I think.

    So I don’t blame any individual group of voters (luckily I’m only 64 ). I do blame the Labour party and their allies in the Tory party, the BNP and the Orange Order. Not much we can do with the tories etc. but what we can do is make life very difficult for the labour party. I would suggest we can do this in three ways.

    1. Expose the con that they perpetrated on the vulnerable in society by their scare stories and lies about pensions and the pound. do this every time the subject is raised by a No voter, keep the WBB handy and loan it out if necessary.

    2. Expose the myth of “more powers” and a timetable to implement these powers, they have already not produced before parliament on the 19th September, a motion agreed by all parties for a timetable for the implementation of these new powers, they will renege on more.

    3. Back English MP’s for English laws. This will start a constitutional crisis as powers are stripped from the Scottish unionist MP’s, right in front of their supporters eyes ( better together – Aye Right!) more than 65% of the English voters think that Scottish MP’s should not vote on English only legislation. get them involved if you can by writing to relatives down south. Get them to use the website

    to contact their MP, and use it yourself to contact your own MP and ask them to commit to supporting this. After all, if Scottish MP’s have to waste time being involved in English only legislation, and then have to vote on it when it doesn’t affect their constituents in Scotland, then they are wasting time that could be better used. As Jim Murphy says “what we have to is end poverty” Well, let’s get them more time to do this.

    • Contact my local MP? Seriously? It would be easier to contact outer space than that non-entity. And I thought that long before September the 18th.

      • Your MSP should hold a clinic in your area at least once a month. The office he works from should have details of where and when. They will also have an e-mail address for your MSP and details of his role in parliament. Your MSP is paid by you lots and lots of money to represent your views in parliament, he/she is a the heh-hiedgin of civil servants. Some MSP’s and certainly most MP’s have forgotten that and turned the balance of power on its head, seizing all the power and wealth. If we become complacent we will lose all trace of democracy as your MSP tells you what to do next and not the other way around. On every single matter that your MSP does not serve you, print it in the local paper or post it online.

      • cynical lowlander

        You didn’t click the link, did you?
        It is so easy to contact him or her. Now, whether they do something about it or not is a different matter, but they will have to deal with it, and that uses resources.
        I contacted mine yesterday to enquire as to the slippage in the timetable Gordon had promised, and he’ll be getting another letter on the subject in a week or so. As Jack says below, they will also hold surgeries you can attend if you wish, I wouldn’t bother with going to any of my MP’s though, we don’t even speak the same language.

        • Your responses gladen me. They are the fact based, helpful and honest replies of real people. Sadly, even if I was unlucky enough to see it in the constituency, yes, an MP in the wild, I couldn’t get through the carapace of self interest, lies, cowardice and stupidity if I had a tin opener.

  44. Referendum

    Love – 15

  45. Just found this apologies if you’ve already seen it. I think if they can do this how easy is it for them to swing a vote? I’m going to show this to every person I know that felt pressurised into voting no. Check out the one with the Scottish accent, suggesting we forego feeding the bairns in order to pay for a TV license!

  46. It’s worth looking over the London based media over the last week or two, for their coverage of the referendum, but particularly over the financial and economic issues. As they panicked over the closeness over the polls, the one that showed YES ahead, with the £ sliding, for the first time many of them really looked at the issues and realised that far from being a burden on the UK, Scotland was a powerhouse for it, and, though they still perhaps don’t dare admit it to themselves, a nett contributor.

    What this means is that the next Indy Ref, which won’t be long away, maximum 5 years and probably a lot less after failure to deliver Brown’s vow, signed by Cameron Miliband and Clegg, the London-based media may be forced to report the financial situation more accurately, and more truthfully, because of the rUK readership.

    The corollary of the rUK losing financially because of Scotland’s Independence, is that Scotland will gain by being Independt. Which means the economic case for Independence may well be made by the London-based media, not by the YES 2015 campaign.

  47. let Us be very practical. So now the first task. We must deal with the People of NO, The Quislings, faint hearts, and mean spirited ones, who think only of themselves, or the worst of others. Why should We have anything to do with them?…..They have made of themselves an Enemy within, untrustworthy in the struggle that is now beginning, and which they instinctively will oppose, as these people are always against hope. Do not even hate them. Just ignore. They are people that do not have any spiritual or emotional powers. We have. Above all, We have hope. We must go forwards. Anything that goes towards victory must be pursued. But above all. IGNORE those who would stop Us, whilst doing nothing themselves.

  48. Never forget the sight of Anas Sarwar and Johann Lamont getting all gleeful and excited when Scotland elected a single UKIP MEP. Labour, whether in Scotland or in England, are scraping the bottom of the political barrel. (Now, now, no jokes about David Coburn shouting “ouch” or being a masochist)

  49. Here we go folks.

    Less than a week has passed and Westminster have already reneged on their timetable for devolution and now this.

  50. Institute for Scottish Social Justice through Independence.

    Or something like.

    Why has there never been a revolution in the UK? Simple, the aristocracy and then the Establishment have been clever enough to give away minimal but just sufficient powers to keep the restive masses in their place. We saw that in the 19C with the Reform Act and subsequent acts and we saw it last week with the last ditch “vow”. We have to be just as clever. We have to be united and present positive arguments. We have to be forthright in championing social justice, fairness, equity, redistribution of wealth and income, an end to tax avoidance and obscene levels of pay for those at the top and crumbs for those at the bottom, land reform, and, yes, taking back vital services into public ownership.

    I heard Miliband this morning claiming a No vote was a vote for fairness and equity (or similar). We all know that is a lie. The (unintended?) consequence of a No vote is precisely the opposite: more austerity, more tax cuts for the rich, more punishment for the poor etc and Scotland slipping down the agenda until it falls off the bottom. I think that is already beginning to happen. The media circus has moved on.

    Therefore, we need to have a means of keeping our agenda on the front pages and counteracting all that misinformation, but by something which is independent of political parties, so that it has credibility. It also has to gain traction by communicating with and persuading the No voters, not by demonising them.

    I heard Pat Kane call for an alternative media, one that is free of the bias of the MSM, including the BBC which, he argued, blitzed us in the final few days with No propaganda. I agree, but we also have to be savvy. There’s no use preaching only to the converted, as on here, we have to get the message out and like it or not (and I don’t) the BBC is the pre-eminent media channel, (probably) trusted by most of the No voters.

    This is why we need a portal, a Think Tank, to research and disseminate policy papers and to co-ordinate all our efforts. On hearing Miliband, for example, it could create a concise rebuttal and blitz media outlets and Yes opinion formers. It could send the rebuttal to a database of supporters who would sign it and send it to our MP’s, MSP’s etc, in the same way as other groups do.

    It would need researchers, media-savvy people who not only can polish a good phrase but know how to play the establishment system, volunteers and a top class co-ordinater to manage the project. It would also need money; so we need a wealthy backer and/or we need to put our hands in our wallets and purses. As someone said on another page, “Freedom comes at a cost”.

  51. ” ill-informed BBC”

    Come off it, Derek. Great article but for these 3 words. These lying bastards knew exactly what they were doing.

  52. It is far from over for a long time Derek.

    1. A Lord Ashcroft poll in the Guardian the day after the vote showed 25% of No voters stated their prime reason for voting No was the offer of new powers. If as seems likely those powers are not forthcoming and/or are not seen as actual useful powers changing things for the better then half of those are enough to swing another referendum.

    2. There are those of us in the 45% group who have pledged to work to unseat all unionist party politicians in whatever vote. At the GE I will cross Dundee and work to unseat Mcgovern for Labour in Dundee West. If we send a majority of Yes politicians to Westminster and return a Yes govt at Holyrood that will be democratic grounds for another referendum. Note also the huge surge in Yes party memberships since the vote. The SNP have gained 8,000 new members in a few days. Not only will that increase their income it provides a whole lot of new footsoldiers experienced in campaigning from the referendum, like me.

    3. The 2017 europe referendum. If as the polls currently suggest England votes to leave swamping the votes of the devolved nations then we will have the democratic right to another referendum in response (democratic deficit writ about as large as possible).

    You may be too tired to do it again but the scrapes on my knuckles have not yet healed from last week’s leafleting but I would go out tonight and do it again in a heartbeat. You have a sit down while those of us who still have fire in our bellies and energy take over.

    BTW I have taken a vow not to watch or listen to or read any BBC content ever again. I am incandescent with rage over their gross and ridiculous propagandising in the last couple of weeks. Your former employers are now beyond the pale for me. Unless something changes radically I’m never buying a daily newspaper again either.

    As far as I’m concerned the campaign changed me utterly. I have become an activist keen to get out there again. I’ve joined CND (before the vote) and they have become ever more important and are a legitimate outlet for Yes sentiment. Come along and join us. Volunteer to be their press officer.

  53. In answer to the call for a Scottish independence supporting think tank, what is the Reid Foundation. They produced a lot of material during the campaign period, but getting publicity for any output is a different matter.

  54. We need focus. A new campaign that highlights the inequality and can be summed up in one sentence.

    I say 85%

    Scrap the Barnett formula and give Scotland back 85% of *ALL* tax raised in Scotland (including oil revenues obviously). Since we only get about 70% presently, 85% is a big step forward. And you can’t spin that into something mean. All we want is 85% of what’s already ours. To spend in Scotland. On our policies.

    85% of Scotland turned out to vote. 85% care. So give us 85% of our own money.

    That’s step one.

    Step two – we go for 100%.

    That gives us the wealth to create an oil fund, which will back the Scottish pound and put us in a strong position for the next indyref.

  55. I waited. 27,856 days to vote Yes for an independent Scotland. Work it out for yourself – lol. Although gutted at the result I still believe I will see an independent Scotland in my lifetime. The vision for Scotland that is closest to my own vision is that of The Common Weal and I really hope we incorporate this as we go forward towards an independent Scotland

  56. Oh and NZ does have an independence day, Dominion Day, 26 September. NZ’s acknowledged National Day is Waitangi Day on Feb 6 which celebrates the founding document a treaty between the Crown (now the NZ government) and the Maori Tribes. So separate independence day would be superfluous. Also which stage would you choose to mark it? 1949 or the more recent removal of appeals to the Privy Council in favour of a Supreme Court (much as has happened here wrt to the ECHR).

  57. Can I just explain, I am in that age group myself. It didn’t surprise me that so many had voted No. I have had a lifetime of trying to convince my peers about this matter but they are too self interested to really think about it. The status quo suits them fine. Many of them depend on their jobs by fitting in. They would need to adopt a level of responsibility to change anything, and a lot of them won’t do that.

  58. Yes Derek, the people have spoken, the bastards! But this is a movement, a groundswell, it is unstoppable now and will sweep all before it, starting on Retribution Day when toxic Labour will get their payback for treason from their former supporters.

  59. There are two people who have done more damage to Scotland than anyone else.

    Do I mean Brown and Darling ? – No.

    Do I mean Cameron and Osborne ? – No.

    Do I mean Danny & Dougie Alexander ? – No

    Is it perhaps Johann Lamont & Ruth Davidson ? – No

    Well, I hear you say, WT* is it then ?

    It’s Ken McQuarrie and John Boothman at BBC Scotland, Pacific Quay.

    Their Identities and activities are hidden behind the curtain of brand BBC.

    It is time to remove the cloak of invisibility protecting these two men

    who have singlehandedly x 2 and by foul means,

    destroyed the hopes of so many

    while trampling on Scotland’s right to self determination.

  60. Your analysis chimes with that of George Kerevan. The Labour party has walked into the traps set for them by the Tories. We will have our independence, we will effect social justice, the “haves” may have said to the “have nots” “No Thanks”, but they won’t prevail. As one of the over 65’s who has worked hard for YES, I’m not apologising any more, I’m still campaigning!

  61. lastchancetoshine

    Bottom Line for Margaret is, that Labour has held Glasgow forever at both local and National level and she still ‘represents’ one of the most deprived constituencys in the UK. Why on earth does she need an inquiry to work out the problem?

  62. I reckon it’s time to get some visibility for Scottish culture .
    I watched a programme a few years ago compiled by the BBBC on Kenneth McKellar – a man who backed independence. It was introduced by Mr Beattie and Mr McKellar’s daughter and was a load of old rubbish , there was not even one song broadcast merely a snippet here and there. It was almost as though the powers that be feared the effect .

    Now we have a load of talented young bands , a load of talented young and old pipers , fantastic poets , playwrights and actors , how about we support their efforts and promote views and culture throughout the land.
    Much has been taken from us, sneered at and derided time for Scots to take pride in the past , the present and above all the future.

    P.S please do not apply for tickets for Hogmany shows on either the BBBC or STV – or at least if you do acquire them, then don’t attend.
    I want these duplicitous liars starved out.
    Bitter? Moi?

  63. I think that in the rural areas there are still a lot of closet Tories. Look at the Councils with the largest number of “Independents” and you will find them. Their supporters are mainly the elderly. They were brought up in the days when the local paternalistic landowner was looked up to. Unfortunately, those days are long gone, but the elderly have ot yet come to realize this.

    • Bugger (the Panda)

      Remember, that Glasgow was a “tory” voting city in the 50s and 60s. I did not say Tory as the actual Party was the Progressive and Unionist Party. Ted Heath stuffed them by converting the who structure into the Westminster animal called the Conservatives.

      They withered on the vine in Scotland after that and Thatcher cut the tree down.

      I think these “independents” could be real inheritor of the old Progressive mantle but in spirit only. The spiritual local Tories would vote for these “independents” knowing them or who they were, as local business people, just “like what I am?”

  64. I can’t stand conspiracy theories myself

    and there has been a lot re the count.


    For the first time in history,

    a country of staggering mineral wealth,

    votes by a majority

    to reject self determination

    and to hand over trillions of pounds

    of oil,gas,and renewable energy

    to its more powerful neighbour,

    which is hopelessly deep in debt

    and whose economic future depends on

    access to , in particular, that oil & gas.

    While the rest of the world shakes it’s head in disbelief,

    1.6 million Scots who voted Yes

    are asked by one of the most corrupt states anywhere

    to suspend intelligence, experience,

    instinct and intuition,

    and to accept a ballot result

    that contradicts normal human behaviour

    as well as their campaign experience.

    A ballot, furthermore, which has been organised by a

    political Party whose name is synonymous with election


    This was a vote that the UK Government

    simply could not afford to lose

    and, in order to make sure it did not lose,

    the UK Gov created the biggest PR campaign in UK history,

    a campaign of fear and smear, of lies and deception,

    in which the entire mass media of the UK was mobilised

    to the Government’s exclusive use for two years.

    It wasn’t just the count, it was so, so much more.

    This was a tiny population versus a giant;

    a giant with Empire experience behind it;

    with all the forces of Neo Liberalism behind it.

    The PR continues unabated

    as the UK Gov seeks for acceptance of the ‘result’

    by the electorate.

    Everything now is a giant squirrel

    because what the UK Gov must now conceal

    is how it was achieved.

    To help, we had no exit polls and no recount is allowed.

    The UK Gov is asking a nation to suspend

    all it’s faculties in order to accept

    what is blindingly obvious, viz

    that what has been stolen was actually a gift.

    Right there is the PR challenge from the beginning –

    how to steal it and make it appear a gift.

    Sure, the count was solid, apart from the postal votes,

    which are a notoriously bad instrument of democracy

    at the best of times,

    but that is not the point.

    The point is – what was the plan from the beginning.

    Once it is known what was in the mind of the victors

    and what they had to do to get a result,

    the mystery of how it was achieved is irrelevant.

    A conjurer never explains how he did it.

    The real trick is to get the audience

    to believe the result.

  65. Geographic analysis is no more helpful than demographic analysis. And it’s too simple to say rural areas are full of closet Tories. What does it achieve?

    The Western Isles voted No – but according to my contacts there it was nothing to do with age or incomers. In his words”we lost the Christian vote” – the local churches, so long powerful in that part of the world, were cautioning against voting Yes.

    Meanwhile across the Minch, Skye voted Yes despite having twice the national average of over 80s and a high percentage of incomers and retirees.

    The Borders does not see itself as Scottish or English – they are Borderers. It’s always been like that. And whilst there may still be a bit of kowtowing to the Roxburghs of this world that is not the main issue. This part of the world will always be a hard nut to crack because it already sees itself as quite distinct.

    But none of this is actually helpful. People vote how they vote and they should not have to justify it to anyone.

    However, if the consequences of voting No that we warned about come true then they must accept a share of responsibility for that.

    We didn’t win last week because, for whatever reason, we didn’t convince enough people to vote Yes. That should simply be spurring us on to work even harder to convince enough people that what we want is what they want too.

    And, in reality, in trying to redefine our society, which is what we want to do, that would only have been marginally easier with a Yes vote

  66. The blame game is just a waste of energy which should now be harnessed and used to focus on where we go from here. We need to accept the outcome and move on.

    You are correct, Derek, when you say enthusiastic yessers are all over the place coming up with their own ideas without any cohesion to it. Even if YES groups are continuing I feel we need an overhead body to co-ordinate and collate what we’re doing. We need a constructive way forward.

    I also feel we need to evaluate our own efforts in the campaign as well as that of the other side if we are to win next time around. We need to scrutinise our method of operation as well as the no sides, We know UK government saw it as a military operation and used military terms. They were at war and , without any actual physical violence, carried out the campaign in that way. It’s too easy to say it was scaremongering that did it. It was much more than that – we only know some of the dirty tricks, we need to find out all.

    While the use of social media has been a great success, we need other ways of communicating as it is too transparent. There are times when communication needs to be off the radar. You can bet by your bottom dollar they already know what we are about; what we are thinking. You don’t win wars by being so bloody obvious. Our online activity will have been well monitored and will still be monitored since we didn’t lie down and die.

    I think it is well within the realms of possibility that YES groups were infiltrated. As we continue that will happen again. How will we know? I haven’t a clue but the Great British establishment will try to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

    Delighted to see so many enthusiastically joining all Pro Indy parties. This might help to give them all a focus. It could also cause disillusionment and they wont have free reign to set the world to rights in the way or timescale that they desire. However the discipline of being in an organisation my help somewhat.

  67. Excuse me folks, stop and listen to yourselves, read what you have written and think! what you are now doing is EXACTLY what westminster wants – fighting with ourselves and blaming people. First off the demographics came from a poll conducted by the people who wanted you to vote NO don’t you think they’re still trying to destroy the YES movement? We need to be more careful now as there are even less rules and focus on how we get our message across, the people of Scotland have been conned into staying with a basket case of an economy because our resources are keeping it afloat, and whether you like it or not the most we can expect at present is DEVO MAX – whatever that actually is. In eight months we will have an opportunity to place our vote where it matters and give strength in numbers to the pro – independence parties in a westminster election, the unionists will not deliver what was promised, tear themselves apart doing it and then we will be able to force the issue to our benefit.

  68. My Mum voted YES, aged 80. Her best friend voted YES, aged 96! Both are now looking forward to voting SNP in May and if all 1.6 million (the 45 plus even some of the angry duped 55) vote SNP we will have 59 SNP mps! What a day that will be. Bring it on says the 96 year old!

  69. An intelligent piece.

    Where I took exception, and on re-reading I am pretty sure I completely disagree with you.

    “As far as we can see into the future, independence is off the board and the game has changed.”

    It probably hasn’t.

    What if’s?

    Scenario One (the sensible one)

    Scotland elects a majority of Independence mandated MP’s at the next Westminster election. Next year I believe. By not standing against each other and all having Scottish Independence as a manifesto commitment. What are the three Unionist Parties to do in response? Agree a similar electoral pact? With decent political will I could see the former happening, the latter not so much. If that were the case it would be a straightforwards fight between the good guys and the bad guys. The darker shade of hat is worn by a fractious, broken and totally discredited Labour Party. I’d also kind of expect that 45% of the electorate, equally distributed – it wouldn’t be -would take every seat in Scotland at a Westminster General Election. John Curtice, eat your heart out!

    Me? I’d declare UDI at that poiint, but politicians love negotiating….

    Scenario Two (the likely one)

    We do not coalesce around good sense and continue in our own slightly fractious ways.

    We return yet another majority of Scottish constituencies for Labour. SNP move up a seat or two but UKIP win one in Scotland. Anyway Boris PM agrees on a vote to take us out of the EU. You thought you had seen anything in the way of propoganda? Well, you hadn’t.

    Boris, with his deputy Nigel ‘fix’, in the sense of manipulate through media and lies, an exit.

    Our Labour MP’s split, some for separation from the ‘overweening EU State’, The shade of Lech Walesa cries bitter tears. The rest are noticeable in Subways and other below ground (c.f. nuclear bunkers) sticking their finders in their ears and chanting that started ‘La, La, La la La, la, a faint echo of ‘mont was heard in the distance.’

    Scots vote yes to independence under elections that require UN security as the UK state – i.e. London attacks it’s own factional debate about whether real men put chocolate flakes on their latté – or not.

    Please note that this is the likely scenario.

    Scenario Three The Unlikely Scenario.

    That the current status quo ante survives for very long.

    ‘Oh! did I say that?’

    ‘No honey, go back to sleep……zzzzz”

    (I do wish you had preview)

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