By a Newsnet reporter

Speaking in London after the international conference on Somalia on Friday, Spanish Foreign Minister José Manuel García-Margallo confirmed that Spain would accept Scottish independence and would not attempt to block an independent Scotland’s membership of the EU.

Mr García-Margallo said:  “If the two parts of the United Kingdom are in agreement that [Scottish independence] is in accord with their constitutional arrangement, written or unwritten, Spain would have nothing to say, we would simply maintain that it does not affect us.”

Mr García-Margallo reminded the press that “the [Spanish] Constitution is based upon the indissoluble unity of the Spanish nation.”  He added:  “The constitutional arrangements of the United Kingdom are one thing, those of Spain another, and it is their own business if they decide to separate from one another.”  

The Spanish Foreign Minister ruled out any parallels with Kosovo, whose independence from Serbia Spain refuses to recognise.  He explained that Kosovo achieved its independence from Serbia as a result of a unilateral declaration which has not been accepted by the Serbian government, he added that Spain’s position on Kosovo would have been different if Kosovan independence came after a negotiated agreement between Belgrade and Pristina.  

As recently as 3 weeks ago, Labour’s  shadow Welsh secretary Peter Hain repeated the claim that Spain would veto Scottish membership of the EU, saying:  “Spain has real problems with the Basque country and Catalonia … And I think they would be really, really opposed to granting European Union membership and would veto it for a part of a country which had seceded.”  

Mr Hain’s remarks came after Mr García-Margallo had already denied reports in the UK media that Scottish membership of the EU would be blocked by a Spanish veto.  Mr García-Margallo’s recent comments underline his previous statement and reiterate the view that Spain sees no parallels between its domestic situation and Scotland, or between Scotland and Kosovo.

Speaking to the Express newspaper, Aileen McLeod MSP, a member of the Scottish Parliament’s Europe and External Affairs Committee, said: “These comments are welcome and totally undermine the increasingly ridiculous scaremongering campaign by the Tories and the other anti-independence parties.

“The reality is, as legal, constitutional and European experts have confirmed, that Scotland is part of the territory of the European Union and the people of Scotland are citizens of the EU.

“There is no provision for either of these circumstances to change upon independence, and the rest of the UK will be in exactly the same position.

“We will both be successor states, with exactly the same status within the EU.”


# Angus 2012-02-26 03:59
So what’s his take on the Basques?
He doesnt seem that enthusiastic about Scotland, for obvious reasons, despite the headline!?
# pmcrek 2012-02-26 22:20
You may be underestimating Spain’s inherent dislike of the UK though?

I’m sure the Spanish Government amongst others have close to zero love for the British Establishment and its continuance.
# Arbroath1320 2012-02-26 04:13
Speaking in London after the international conference on Somalia on Friday, Spanish Foreign Minister José Manuel García-Margallo confirmed that Spain would accept Scottish independence and would not attempt to block an independent Scotland’s membership of the EU.

Well I guess that is another unionists argument shot down in flames then.

As recently as 3 weeks ago, Labour’s shadow Welsh secretary Peter Hain repeated the claim that Spain would veto Scottish membership of the EU, saying: “Spain has real problems with the Basque country and Catalonia … And I think they would be really, really opposed to granting European Union membership and would veto it for a part of a country which had seceded.”

Oh dear Mr. Hain, I think you have screwed up again!

“We will both be successor states, with exactly the same status within the EU.”

I think that one line says it all!
# clootie 2012-02-26 07:56

Yes – Two myths destroyed in one press statement.
# Angus 2012-02-26 04:26
Maybe, but this is not a significant speech from José Manuel García-Margallo,
he is being coy, like most policticians, affraid incase his comments come back and bite his erse! He is being nuetral, I think anyone can see this.
His speech does not make me over optimistic, tho you are right, it nuetralises a lot of unionist arguement.
He hasnt read the chapter 11 of the UN
# Arbroath1320 2012-02-26 04:36
As you say Angus, he is more terrified of what his words will do with regards to the Basque situation back in Spain.

However, it does make any difference how coy he tries to be. The words that are reported here about what he has said about Scotland and her future membership of the E.U. are enough to give, in my view, the unionists even more sleepless nights.

At this moment in time they seem to wake up almost on a daily basis to news that one or more of their anti independence arguments have been blown up or shot to smithereens.

If things keep going as they currently are by the time we reach the referendum date (unionist not SNP) in 2013 the unionist cupboard will be bare.
# Exile 2012-02-26 11:19
As far as I can see, what he said boils down to “It’s OK with Spain as long as it’s OK with London.” Hardly a ringing endorsement of Scotland’s right to self-determination. It just makes Alex Salmond’s approach of seeking conciliation and agreement with London all the more important to the diplomatic aftermath of a YES vote.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 13:20
Terrified, coy? I don’t think so. The People’s Party governmenet’s statement is meant more for internal consumption, I imagine.

Shot over the bows of the separatists in Spain – in other words, don’t take Scotland as a precedent.
# Lupus Incomitatus 2012-02-26 19:33
If Euskedi and Catalana secede from Spain despite that being illegal under their constitution, then Spain is totally finished.

A great deal of their GDP comes from these two provinces and without them Spain would be like Greece, olive groves, vineyards and empty apartments and equally empty banks.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 19:46
Too right, Catalonia pays over 9% of its GDP over in “solidarity” to the rest of Spain – correction, has been doing this for 30 years.

In Germany Bavaria is suing the central government because it takes 4+%. On pure logic, you wonder why Catalonia continues to let itself be bled dry. But then it never just comes down to pure logic, as we know.
# kofk 2012-02-26 04:57
Although in the beginning i was glad to see Donald Trump investing in Scotland, my veiw has changed some what, especially now that he is not just protecting his own golf courses veiw, (which i personally disagree with) but has now decided he is going to undemocraticall y try to impose his bullying tactics regarding our energy policy, so i would ask kindly that hopefully some of our very clever contributors to this site would help regarding, finding out who he is being funded by and also who he is funding,i feel this is very important and should be dealt with very quickly, and please leave no stone unturned
# rhymer 2012-02-26 12:34
[quote name=”kofk”]Although in the beginning i was glad to see Donald Trump investing in Scotland, my veiw has changed.

Actually I would rather has him as an enemy than a friend.
He is a magnet for contraversy.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 13:25
Kofk, Spain has the same dilemma with Sheldon Adelson’s Eurovegas casino project, creating thousands of jobs but demanding to have conditions that make it a tax haven mafia-controlled enclave and legal black hole encrusted into the Spanish state.

Madrid and Barcelona are pathetically scrapping for this rotten project, who wouldn’t with 25% unemployment?

These vultures attack where they think they can draw blood and expecting them to show signs of democratic behaviour is optimistic.
# InfrequentAllele 2012-02-26 05:06
I disagree that this story is not significant. It may not be significant for Spanish politics, but it’s significant for Scottish politics.

Garcia-Margallo is clearly saying that in the opinion of the Spanish govt, the Scottish situation has no parallel within Spain. This obliterates the Unionist scare story which would have Scots believe that Spain would veto Scottish membership of the EU so as not to give Basques or Catalans any ideas.

He went further by explaining that Spain’s objection to Kosovan independence was based on Kosovo unilaterally declaring independence without the agreement of the Serbs – and that Spain would recognise Kosovan independence if it was negotiated with the Serbian government.

Scotland would achieve independence with the agreement of Westminster – because under the terms of the UK constitutional settlement if Scots vote for independence Westminster has no choice but to to accept it and begin negotiations on independence.

Spain is saying there is no basis for a Spanish veto. So we can say adios to Peter Hain’s (and other Unionists’) argument.
# chicmac 2012-02-26 08:05
Absolutely IA, this should nail that one good and proper. Indeed it is a little surprising that Span has been as forthcoming and unequivocal as it has. I suppose it is even possible Peter Hain’s rash comments have been of some assistance in that regard.

The Spanish position itself is less surprising. The prospect of a Scotland (and therefore its fishing grounds) outside the EU one would expect might bring a certain focus to bear on the matter.

There is too, additional clarity with the specific mention and ruling out of a Kosovo parallel and we should also not lose sight of the sweet irony that even in that regard the UK itself was one of the first states to recognise Kosovo (as indeed do the vast majority of the UN member states now).
# Marga B 2012-02-26 13:30
IA, I bow to your knowledge on this subject, but I would’t say “It may not be significant for Spanish politics” – it’s surely a message to his own lot not to take a precedent from Scotland.

Going on sbout Spain is O/T, but just to say that for me, he’s saying to the UK “keep out” because Catalonia is desperately seeking international sympathy for its sovereignty project.

How much attention people pay to Brit or Spanish sabre-rattling these days is another matter.
# InfrequentAllele 2012-02-26 15:27
There was a wee mistake in my first post Marga. I’d meant to write “may or may not be significant for Spanish politics”. I do actually agree with you that García Margallo’s statement has some significance within Spain – as you say it’s a warning shot from the PP that Scottish independence won’t change anything for Catalunya or Euskal Herria – or Galiza, which always seems to get forgotten in these discussions.

However I still think the statement is far more significant for Scotland. For us, it does change things.

Incidentally, it always amuses me immensely that the symbol of the Partido Popular is the gaviota, the seagull – scavenging rats with wings that cover everything in poo.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 19:50
I’ll remember that one, IA! But then, with the Catalan symbol a donkey…!
# clootie 2012-02-26 08:02
I will be interested in the spin and placement in any MSM coverage.
# RaboRuglen 2012-02-26 08:04
Hi there,

What annoys me is the arrogance of the Unionist politicians who just naturally assume that rUK will carry on within the EU as though nothing had happened after Independence and that somehow a newly Independent Scotland will be dependent on their goodwill to rejoin. In fact as time moves on it appears that, what any reasonable person would have assumed, – with regards to the EU – BOTH COUNTRIES WILL BE IN EXACTLY THE SAME POSITION. In which case rUK probably has a greater potential for loss than Scotland.

Not only that, but despite the situation beginning to clarify they keep repeating the canards.

On the plus side, as long as we have the appropriate counter-arguments, they just
make themselves look ridiculous. Oh dear.

# Astonished 2012-02-26 08:54
Surely Peter Hain and all the other mouthpieces should now apologise to the people of Scotland and Spain ?

Can newsnet contact him regarding his lie and ask him if he would like to correct it ? And, more importantly, can they contact the Spanish press ?

I just looooove it when another onionist lie bites the dust !!
# art1001 2012-02-26 09:19
Maybe I am wrong but I think this is actually a bit more significant. It seems that Spain is quietly drawing attention to how the UK is a treaty state. That Scotland and England are already sovereign states joined by the international Treaty of Union only. That is very important because I think they must have had their lawyers in Madrid check into this.

Maybe they see this a solution for the Gibralter issue if the UK itself is dissolved. Rather than a threat they could become diplomatically supportive.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 13:34
art1001, you have to realise that if you accept support from the Spanish government you’re taking the support of a state that represses its own nations without a state.

Moral dilema, eh?
# Seagetagrip 2012-02-26 09:40
An independent Scotland will lead to many headaches for Westminster of which Gibralter is but one.
# EphemeralDeception 2012-02-26 10:31
Spain is not likely to get Gibraltar.
Essentially Europe was carved up under the treaty of Utrecht during the Spanish Succession. In 1713 (I think) The UK (England essentially) got Gibraltar and a monopoly on the slave trade. In exchange the English betrayed the Catalans who were their allies at the time allowing the Castillans to Annexe Catalonia.

Secondly the Gibraltans have no interest in joining Spain since they are made up of anglocentric expats. With an English education system, English law etc. Essentially, a little English colony with other cultural influences.
# InfrequentAllele 2012-02-26 15:37
Although there are certainly many expats in Gibraltar, most people there are not expats. They call themselves Llanitos and speak Spanish and English – quite often using both languages in the same sentence. Although it’s certainly true that they don’t consider themselves Spanish.

Spain didn’t annexe Catalunya as a result of the War of Spanish Succession. Aragon (which included Catalunya) and Castile were united by the marriage of Ferdinand of Aragón and Isabel of Castile in 1469.

What happened after the Spanish War of Succession was that Madrid abolished the traditional autonomy enjoyed by the various kingdoms and provinces that until then had comprised Spain. That’s when Catalan lost its status as an official and administrative language within Catalunya and the other Catalan speaking regions of Aragón (the old Kingdom of Valencia and the Balearic Islands).
# Mei 2012-02-26 10:46
Scotland poll is set for
Oct 18, 2014…/…

Scotlands Day of Destiny…/…
# scottish_skier 2012-02-26 11:06
That would be the English Sun, rather than the Scottish one.

“They will vote for or against independence from England.”

And here was me thinking we were voting for independence from Wales, N. Ireland, England and all the other ‘British’ territories.
# Teri 2012-02-26 20:23
Moore, aka Herman Munster, is using the phrase just now that ‘the SNP want to separate England from Scotland but they are not for being separated.’ That’s a new way of putting it. I wonder what the phrase will be for the month of March?
# chicmac 2012-02-26 21:21
# Ard Righ 2012-02-26 10:48
Independence is not an offer, it is a statement. Besides, who in their right mind would want to part of a failing E.U.?
# GavB 2012-02-26 10:51
I think Spain would have remained silent on this matter if Peter Hain has not attempted to misrepresent their position. Countries do not normally comment on internal matters of other countries,

With misinformation being peddled, of course the Spanish were going to make their real position clear.

Keep it up Peter, make something up about some other countries so they too can speak some truths.
# Arbroath1320 2012-02-26 13:25
I think Spain would have remained silent on this matter if Peter Hain has not attempted to misrepresent their position.

And there you have it GavB. The reason is all wrapped up in that one little sentence with everyone’s fsvourite word,misrepresent right there for all to see. Labour at their finest!
# tartanfever 2012-02-26 10:57
Here’s how the express is reporting it –…/…

Pretty much as above, but they have a strange sentence dropped in just to quell the nats:
Professor Thomas Giegerich, an international law expert at Edinburgh University, said it would be “diplomatically difficult” for Scotland to join the EU as other member states would be “reluctant” to anger the UK.
# Stevie Cosmic 2012-02-26 11:25
And that of course, is yet more blatant scaremongering.

An independent Scotland would have over 50% of the EU’s energy reserves in hydrocarbons alone. Westminster, in the event of independence, would no doubt be screaming blue murder about retaining it’s generous EU opt-outs: If an attractive busty blonde and a hysterical, horsey and demanding plain Jane were in the queue for a busy exclusive nightclub, which one would you let in first?
# Exile 2012-02-26 11:29
Apart from the fact (stated goodness knows how many times, you’d have thought this ‘expert’ would have cottoned on) that Scotland will not have to JOIN, as it’s already a member, I would imagine other countries around the EU would be only too eager to anger the rump UK (i.e. London).
# Legerwood 2012-02-26 11:33
Took the words right off my keyboard.
# RaboRuglen 2012-02-26 11:32
Hi Tartan,

Why does the Prof think the rest of the EU would be reluctant to anger the UK? After recent UK actions within the EU over finance I would have thought the rest of the members would be seeking every opportunity available to “anger” the UK, if not actually expel it. It only bodes well for an Independent Scotland in the future.

# tartanfever 2012-02-26 12:43
Hi Rab,

I would agree with you, i think many member states will be looking at the UK with some trepidation after recent events. This Prof. is obviously just playing a game of ‘political projection’ in a series of ‘what if ? ‘ scenarios that the newspaper has decided to report in a particular fashion.
# Fungus 2012-02-26 11:59
This always supposes that Scotland wants to join the EU. Personally I think we should do a Norway.
# Arbroath1320 2012-02-26 13:36
I totally agree with you on this point Fungus. I don’t think Scotland should either be a member state of the E.U. nor should we be in the Euro.
# Arbroath1320 2012-02-26 13:34
Tripe, garbage and scaremongering. That is all the unionists are capable of. Ever since May last year this is all we have ever had from them. Negativity! The unionists are incapable of comprehending the concept that is positivity!

All we have ever had out of the unionists is how great the union is for us! The problem is the “us” they keep going on about is not the U.K. as we know it but the U.K. as they know it i.e. Engerland!

The unionists have a great deal of difficulty in separating out the difference between Engerland and the U.K. as a whole! They are not stupid. They know what is going to happen when we gain Independence and they are terrified!

They have never had to deal with an Independent Scotland on their doorstep before. They have no concept of how to cope after we are Independent. They are so used to “using and abusing” Scotland that they are devoid of any ideas of how to run a country post Independence!
# snowthistle 2012-02-26 20:29
Since our beef is with Westminster and the British Government is there anything to be gained by mocking the English?
# Ready to Start 2012-02-26 11:33
Scotland is one of two successor states of the UK, if Scotland had to re-apply then so would RUK.
# call me dave 2012-02-26 11:45
On independence the SNP will have to pause and reflect on their position about the EU.
We will be in it no doubt and will have to then decide what the best way forward is.

By 2014 I doubt that not to much will have changed in the murky world of finance and the situation will also be peppered with risks.

The present SG although rightly defending it’s position as ‘being in the EU’ will have to consider other options and then we will have another referendum to decide.

Personally I hope we take on an EFTA model but – Hey! – Everyone will be breathing in new Independence Air and confident about the future, besides we will be making our own jam by then and our friends beyond the Hadrian’s wall will have a smaller voice in the matter.
# DonaldMhor 2012-02-26 11:53
Hain has followed a well trodden path with his Ukanian hee hawing and belching. The Spanish mannie has simply protected his position diplomatically as Spain has a lot of business interests in Scotland and can see that independence is inevitable so it does not want any hiccups come Scottish Independence Day, (I like that.) Not the least of these interests are the many Spanish fishing licences in Scottish waters and the huge shell fish trade with Scotland. Every day shell fish trucks run to Spain from the west coast. They also have a big renewable interest here through Iberdola, and do they not own an airport? So you see an independent Scotland holds no fears for a savvy country with business interests.

Sadly what we have seen from the unionist camp over the past few years is a pattern of insulting and lying about other sovereign nations and their attitudes to an independent Scotland.

We saw the schoolboy spat with Jim Murphy when he insulted Ireland and led to letters being exchanged and articles in the Times. Not happy with that he then went on to blunder in to Norway and caused letters to be exchanged once more as he lied about remarks made by the Norwegian PM. Then Iceland had the benefit of the poisonous unionist propaganda, and once more letters were sent from Iceland to our press and diplomats. We also had Lord West having to publicly apologise to Belgium and Denmark for his nasty slurs on them. All together a very sad picture of Ukanian, essentially London desperation and fear. No wonder the UKs stock has fallen badly internationally with blundering fools slagging of other sovereign nations who maintain a presence in the world that we should be aspiring to.
# J Wil 2012-02-26 13:23
I like the idea of Ukania. A completely different country to the common perception put about by the media. I hope it goes into the general Lingua Franca soon.
# chicmac 2012-02-26 13:47
I prefer ‘Londonia’
# nchanter 2012-02-26 14:40
Quoting chicmac:
I prefer ‘Londonia’

Is londonia not the capital of ukania? (where all the (hedge) money is)
# chicmac 2012-02-26 15:07
Naw. ‘Ukania’ is only the environs, support system, suburbs, landfill and recreational periphery of the great city-state of ‘Londonia’.
# J Wil 2012-02-26 16:51
i.e. everything north of Watford?
# CliveYoung 2012-02-26 16:11
Some wag on Radio 4 last week suggested ‘Poundland’, my favourite so far.
# Vincent McDee 2012-02-26 12:03
Garcia-Margallo is just being “diplomatic”:

” Imply ability to avoid offending others or hurting their feelings, especially in situations where this ability is important.”

“Diplomatic suggests a smoothness and skill in handling others, usually in such a way as to attain one’s own ends and yet avoid any unpleasantness or opposition

Just doing what he’s paid to do, no more, no less.
# Alba4Eva 2012-02-26 12:16
Was Peter Hain exhibiting a smoothness and skill in handling others by just being diplomatic and avoiding unpleasantness? LOL
# jafurn 2012-02-26 12:51
You mean exhibiting a smoothness and skill in handling others like this……/

From about 4 minutes in..
# Alba4Eva 2012-02-27 04:36
Must have watched that 200 times…. just watched it again… it’s a pure classic. *;0)
# bruman 2012-02-26 12:10
As someone who has quite a lot of money tied up in Spain at the moment I’m happy to read this clarification by the Spanish Government.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 19:58
I’m sure you know that Spain has not yet touched bottom, to put it mildly.
# Hing em high 2012-02-26 12:10
We should do a Norway! Put the option on the ballot paper!
# tilly 2012-02-26 13:03

Europe’s top and bottom ten of most/least productive/most /least hours worked countries.

‘Poor Ireland’ comes in at number 3 most productive country. The UK is sits at number 14.

Source: OECD
# .Scot 2012-02-26 13:07
If even a David Cameron, Professor of European political studies at Yale University is ignorant of Scotland’s different religions, different law systems, different education and health services, writing in the World politics Review, how are Scots to get a fair hearing on the world stage? Self-appointed PM Cameron and his unelected
deputy Clegg have already stated/written that they will not stand in the way of a referendum on independence. I assume that does not absolve any following British Leaders in 2015 or before, of any blocking objections to Scottish independence?…/…
# Marga B 2012-02-26 13:14
García Margallo: “the [Spanish] Constitution is based upon the indissoluble unity of the Spanish nation…”

“Speaking to the Express newspaper, Aileen McLeod MSP, a member of the Scottish Parliament’s Europe and External Affairs Committee, said: “These comments are welcome”.

Thanks for the solidarity, Aileen. Love from Catalonia.
# InfrequentAllele 2012-02-26 15:41
To be fair, I think she was welcoming his comments on Scotland, not his comments on Catalunya.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 16:09
Yes I know, but one thing that is rather sadly true of the nations without a state seeking independence is that there is very little solidarity between them.
# Dundonian West 2012-02-26 14:22
O/T.There are several independence comments on the Scottish Sunday Sun web page—–but not enough to show significant support or otherwise.
The comments’ page does require us to register—–but perhaps it’s a small price to pay for a bit of fresh air in Scottish journalism/politics,in the present unionist climate?…/…
# Welsh Sion 2012-02-26 14:27
When the Soviet Union imploded, was there wailing from the West that the successor state of Russia had to re-negotiate her place on the UN Security Council?

When the Soviet Union imploded, was there ‘a stop and think moment’ to block the entry of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania into Western ‘democratic, capitalistic’ markets?

Did they defend the unions to which these nations belonged?

When Yugoslavia was wound up did the west refuse entry of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Montenegro into the ‘freedom loving West’, on the basis of the fact ‘they were stronger together’ in the unity of Yugoslavia?

Did the West say ‘Stop’ to the annexation of East Germany by West Germany, thus removing that state from the face of the map?

In all these cases, of course not. They were being held as subject peoples’ and it was the duty of Western ‘democrats’ to support their rights to self-determination, independence, autonomy outwith another government’s control.

I’m very confused then why this sauce seems to be OK for aspiring, youthful, freedom loving geese in the east of our continent yet is not permissible to the ganders in the west of Europe. Perhaps some ‘unionist’ could enlighten me.

Yours in solidarity,

PS You must know how much Peter Hain is loved by the majority of the Welsh nationalist movement… 😉
# Arraniki 2012-02-26 14:28
Pace Dundonian West 2012-02-26 13:22
O/T.There are several independence comments on the Scottish Sunday Sun web page—–but not enough to show significant support or otherwise.

The SUN’s date must be taken with a very large pinch of snuff. No way could this be considered as a realistic date for several reasons but chiefly because this is right in the middle of school holidays when a large number of teachers and others plus their families will be chasing the sun somewhere.

Here on the island the schools have two weeks holiday.
# Welsh Sion 2012-02-26 14:37
Regarding the Scottish Sun’s EXCLUSIVE on your Referendum Date, surely the matter is very easy to grasp.

They’re launching a ‘new’ newspaper today and want the biggest story (true or otherwise) on the front page.

# Dundonian West 2012-02-26 14:52
Quoting Welsh Sion:
Regarding the Scottish Sun’s EXCLUSIVE on your Referendum Date, surely the matter is very easy to grasp.

They’re launching a ‘new’ newspaper today and want the biggest story (true or otherwise) on the front page.


TRUE.In it for the cash.
Time will tell.He may actually take on the Record—-now that would be a challenge!
# RTP 2012-02-26 14:36
Well that was Politics Scotland no mention of Joyce or what Lamont is doing but plenty on the Sun and the date I only hope that no one in the SNP was daft enough to give the Sun that date as it would a very big on goal.The SSE was worked into the frame that they are against independence when nothing like that was in the report,all companies have risk assessment regardless of what country they will invest in.
# Arraniki 2012-02-26 14:38
O/T No great surprise from BBC Politics Show.
The 60 second round up of the week – absolutely no mention of the arrest of Labour’s Major Joyce MP and the charges brought against him.

But they did cover an old film screening of the early years of a Scottish comedian with big banana boots.
I am now in my own darkened room for the next few hours.

[Ed – I saw the clip and it did mention Joyce.]
# Harry.Shanks 2012-02-26 15:33

It was the biggest domestic political story of the week – yet the BBC takes an editorial decision just to mention it in passing.

Just as the Glasgow City Council debacle was the biggest domestic political story of THAT week, and was similarly sunk without trace by the BBC.

Just as Lamont’s fabricated rape case was the biggest domestic political story of THAT week and was buried by the BBC

Need I go on?
# J Wil 2012-02-26 16:54
I didn’t catch who the third man was but Hugh Henry seemed to get his head in slagging off the SNP with uninhibited abandon. I wonder how the BBC come to the conclusion that this qualifies as equal air time for all parties?

PS Andrew Neil is in danger of becoming over exposed. He is wall to wall politiking. Not sure I go for his Sunday Politics over the last codger who did it.
# zeldomzeen 2012-02-26 15:13
Good news. That definitively sinks one of the more nonsensical Unionist scare stories!
# Rafiki 2012-02-26 16:57
Chris Harvie refers to RUk as Londistan.
Quite like that.

Also think someone at the Sun has found a calendar for 2014 and done a bit of guessing; they had to make a splash at the launch. Cannot see anyone in the Scottish Government being naive about media support.
# Teri 2012-02-26 20:29
Anyone guessing when in October (if that’s the right month) needs to work round the October school holidays and the 2 weeks Holyrood is in recess. I’d hazard a guess that October 18th might well be in the school holiday in which case it’s a no, no.
# Jenny2603 2012-02-26 22:30
I wondered if the SNP were perhaps testing the water to see if the idea of a poll on a Saturday would go down well with voters.
# Hing em high 2012-02-26 20:17
As a potential investor I am very worried that the Catalans and the Basques will not be allowed to be Independent!
# Marga B 2012-02-26 23:05
I would imagine investing in the Basque Country might be a better idea since they already have FFA and the biggest banking interests in Spain, and a healthy contempt for Madrid, but I’m not sure who’d want to invest in Catalonia, which is more or less bankrupt. But I’m sure you know 100 times more than me about these things!
# sneckedagain 2012-02-26 20:55
The Sun has already taken on the Record and outsells it substantially.
The fact is that the Record and the Sun have both moved very steadily towards the SNP over the last year and I would say that in the balance the Sun has been pro SNP marginally for most of that time.
Its the bonkers brigade we still face – the Scotsman, the Express and the Mail – but the both the Sun and the Record outsell their combined sales.
The Star and the Mirror have virtually no Scottish political comment

Comment edited by NNS Mod Team

Which leaves the Herald which is in a puzzling place much of the time
I don’t get the P&J; or the Courier and I don’t like reading papers online
# Wee-Scamp 2012-02-26 21:00
Absolutely imperitive there is a vote on EU membership.
# daveniz 2012-02-26 21:10
Scotland has a new fuel source that could do us 300 years + its called fire~ice check it out!…/…

we have abundant amounts of energy so our future is more secure as an independent country as we can use it for the better of Scotland!
# scottish_skier 2012-02-26 22:38
“Professor Bahman Tohidi, director of the Center for Gas Hydrate Research at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh”

Is my boss. Hydrates are our bread and butter – one of the best equipped labs in the world right here in Edinburgh.
# call me dave 2012-02-26 22:42
Quoting daveniz:
Scotland has a new fuel source that could do us 300 years + its called fire~ice check it out!…/…

we have abundant amounts of energy so our future is more secure as an independent country as we can use it for the better of Scotland!

That’s interesting and if there is a supply of the stuff under the ocean that can harnessed to be used in the future all to the good and they said the big bang was serendipity . . Hmm!


Any news of the Falkirk – Labour party special meeting re: Joyce.

It should have finished by now?
# James 2012-02-26 21:33
it is not the prerogative of the Spanish Government to accept or reject Scottish independence as such. That is a matter for the Scottish people, and for them alone. It may, theoretically, withhold diplomatic recognition from independent Scotland, as it has done in the case of Kosovo, but in practice that would be impossible, since Scotland overwhelmingly meets all of the United Nations criteria for self-determination.

That being the case, Spain has every interest in keeping Scotland firmly within the European Union and subject to the EU Common Fisheries Policy that allows Spanish trawlers to plunder Scottish waters to the detriment of Scottish fishers operating within their own national sea area.

Since, however, EU membership is the last thing that is in Scotland’s interests we can no doubt expect to see some particularly dirty tricks wheeled out to ensure that the Scots are not allowed to escape so easily from Brussels control – which in the case of fishing amounts to Madrid control.
# Marga B 2012-02-26 23:07
James, too right, and expect ruthlessness.
# Roll_On_2011 2012-02-26 22:03

Wind energy companies fear government’s commitment is cooling:…/…

Billions of pounds’ worth of investment in the UK’s energy infrastructure is on hold or uncertain because of concerns over the government’s commitment to wind energy.

Keith Anderson, chief corporate officer at Scottish Power, contrasted the situation with that in Scotland, where top politicians, the media and the public tend to advocate more wind power. Much of the company’s planned £1bn investment will go to Scotland.
# sid 2012-02-26 22:08
off topic a bit. when you are trying to win hearts and minds and more importantly votes abusing your oppositions supporters is not really the way to go about it! abusing labour party supporters for instance might make you feel a bit better but it will not get them to change there mind or indeed how they will vote in the future only by showing them that another party’s policy’s are better and will benefit them in the long run will you win the majority that is required
# Jenny2603 2012-02-26 22:28
Couldn’t agree more Sid. We all would do well to remember that independence cannot be delivered solely by SNP supporters. Whatever my complaints about the parliamentary Labour Party I have a great deal of respect their voters and activists.
# Welsh Sion 2012-02-26 22:17
When Scotland becomes independent, I trust you will not forget your allies in the nation of my birth and refer to our ‘attachment’ to England and Northern Ireland as the ‘Former United Kingdom.’

That would be a rather unfortunate acronym, don’t you think?

Yours, aye,
# Marga B 2012-02-26 23:14
O/T – forgive this moderators, but it is a very important comment which seems to counter the “energy uncertainty due to independence” argument:…/…

Wind energy companies fear government’s commitment is cooling

Wind power firms express concern over future policy and reveal how investment in the UK’s energy infrastructure is on hold.


Matthew Clayton, a fund manager at Triodos Investment Management, added: “It worries me from the level of understanding of MPs who are running the country. The arguments [put forward] about costs never seem to factor in an expected rising price of oil and gas and the fact that wind, once installed, provides almost free electricity.”


Keith Anderson, chief corporate officer at Scottish Power, contrasted the situation with that in Scotland, where top politicians, the media and the public tend to advocate more wind power. Much of the company’s planned £1bn investment will go to Scotland.
# Arbroath1320 2012-02-26 23:30
I guess Trump doesn’t think his bully boy tactics are enough!…/…
# Marga B 2012-02-26 23:48
Arbroath, seems like he’s tilting at windmills!
# Arbroath1320 2012-02-26 23:50
Oh droll Marga. Very droll! 😀
# pictic-1 2012-02-27 00:07
@ Marga

AS should get on the phone and invite to Scotland every decision-maker mentioned in the report + anyone else in a similar situation, for a presentation of what the SGov. will do to help them invest in Scotland.

The investors will find all the facilities, skills and locations needed in and around Scotland to further their strategies. These people are talking billions of pounds so we have to get our bums moving and not wait for the London brotherhood to wreck it.

The central belt will willingly build anything required with top quality.
Tidal power harnessed off the west coast and round the Pentland Firth.
What about Kinnaird Head/Fraserburgh, reaching a long way out into the North Sea, surrounded 260 degrees by water and with an under-used port. Wind everywhere.

Oil, gas, frozen methane, wind, tidal power. Don’t expect help from outside or from Lamont, Ruthie the con etc. Do it yourself.

And while we’re at it, [Comment edited – NNS Mod Team]
# amfraeembro 2012-02-27 00:45
Coming immediately after the SSE nonsense, this is absolutely astonishing. Surely a great opportunity for the SNP to do some serious floor wiping!
# sneckedagain 2012-02-27 02:31
Quite a lot of panicky nonsense being talked about the EU by some contributors.
We are looking at a Europe full of friends. Most of the small members of the EU are doing well, thank you, in the prevailing circumstance and the difficulties are to do with incompetence on the part of several governments.
Why do some people who are aware of the distortion that goes on in the MSM about Scotland and independence swallow all the xenophobic guff in them about the EU?
# oldnat 2012-02-27 02:57
It would seem to be common sense that, at the point of independence, the transition should be as seamless as possible.

There are all kinds of things that an independent Scotland might want to do differently. Tying them into the independence debate, when Scots haven’t decided their preferences in a post independence election seems unwise.

I would prefer it if the SNP and the Scottish Government could operate in two different ways.

The Scottish Government should be concerned with the transfer of full powers back to Scotland, in order that Scots can decide their own future.

The SNP should be saying that after independence they will be one party, among many, laying out their vision for Scotland.

For example, conflating the SNP idea of leaving NATO (which I think is wrong, but that’s by the way) shouldn’t be taken to mean that an independent Scotland would automatically leave NATO.

Currently we are in it, and we should leave it only if Scots vote to do so.
# Am Fògarrach 2012-02-27 05:27
Why on earth Scotland would even want to join the 27-member EU is a matter for psychiatric examination. The influence that a country of 5 millions could exert within a union of 500 millions – half of Europe – would put Scotland into a position ten times worse than the one it is justifiably trying to escape.

The EU is a totally unacceptable economic drain on Scotland, and the appalling havoc it has already wreaked in the Scottish economy (think of steel and fishing, amongst others) will not be made good in our lifetime.

This danger does not exist within the other four major European organisations, which are run on intergovernment  al lines, have up to 56 member states each, and represent the whole of Europe, unlike the EU.

Scotland is in the EU at the moment solely as a region of the UK, and has no membership rights of its own. I have no doubt that Spain would kill the Scottish independence movement if it could, but if independent Scotland ever made the mistake of applying for membership of the EU, then Spain would be the last one to oppose it, because its plundering of Scotland’s fishing grounds would then be at an end.

Independent Scotland will have to join up to 50 important international organisations, including the four major all-European institutions, but membership of the smaller European Union is by no means essential or even desirable. Have a look at Scotland in the World in the International section of the SDA website:
# Deepblue 2012-02-27 12:22
Here’s how other countries became Independent…Malta 1964..Worth watching.…/
# sgitheach 2012-03-15 22:07
spain would never want scotland to leave the EU – what and lose scottish fisheries? implausible unionist norm.

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