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Peter A Bell @peterabell
Thinker. Listener. Talker. Reader. Writer. None of my attitudes is immutable. None of my conclusions is final. None of my opinions is humble.
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There is a harsh reality that SNP members might want to keep in mind should they choose to take George Kerevan's advice. While they are "reconsidering the party’s decision to join Nato after independence", they'd do well to remember that Scotland represents a considerable geopolitical asset. It is inevitable that the global powers - existing and aspiring - will compete for access to and control of this asset. If Scotland doesn't chose a side, then the choice will surely be made for us.

thenational.scot/...arms-race/
Replying to 
+ScotNational It seems Scottish Independence Convention's takeover of the Yes movement is almost complete. At which point, it will cease to be a movement, and become a hierarchical, managed organisation. The extraordinary is being made banal. A triumph of hype over wisdom.
Replying to 
+ScotNational Jacob Rees-Mogg has absolutely say in the matter. The right of self-determination is vested wholly in the people of Scotland to be exercised entirely at our discretion.

Jacob Rees-Mogg gets to choose which which off he fucks to.
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If a week's a long time in politics the past two have seemed like an eternity and it should be no surprise to anyone that we begin and end this podcast focusing on the ongoing controversy surrounding Alex Salmond. The...
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Replying to 
@peterabell The SNP need to stop sending out what I consider mixed signals.

We get the regular "this is why we should be independent" tweets from MPs and MSPs, we get Keith Brown saying "this is great" about the National Assembly without any clear road map of what it is for apart from SNP members to yet again announce independence is what they want.

Then we get the SNP doing as you say, Peter. They beg for a seat at trade talks, to be involved in big decisions within the UK. Why? Why do we continue this attitude of subordination.

I'm not sure the SNP's tactic of showing how little power we have or how little Westminster Co aiders us important as really having a big impact on numbers for another indyref. I'm sure quite a lot of No voters are more than happy for Scotland to be sidelined and the "big boys" being in charge.
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MORE than 7000 people joined the SNP following the party’s walkout at Westminster.
Replying to 
+theSNP The UK is systemically incapable of representing Scotland's interests. The Union ensures that Scotland's interests must always be subordinate to those of the British state. So long as Scotland remains in the UK, Scotland will be sacrificed for the benefit of the British state and the clients of the British political elite.

Having a 'role' in UK trade talks is not enough. Scotland's rightful 'role' is as an independent nation freely negotiating its economic and diplomatic and cultural relationships with other independent nations.

In order to adopt our rightful role, we must #DissolveTheUnion. And, as the Union is increasing detrimental to Scotland's interests, we must do so as a matter of great urgency.
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I really loathe their Brexit. I really do. Never before has the main intention of any Government been to intentionally impoverish the people they serve with such chaotic and clueless abandon. There is no redeeming quaiity to what the Tories are doing to us and the fact that my country so overwhelmingly rejected it just […]
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I really loathe their Brexit. I really do. Never before has the main intention of any Government been to intentionally impoverish the people they serve with such chaotic and clueless abandon. There is no redeeming quaiity to what the Tories are doing to us and the fact that my country so overwhelmingly rejected it just […]
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AUOB Dundee [1] main camera #AUOBDundee: This is our front of march and main camera at the rally

--- Livestream by Independence Live. Please Like & share! ---

Independence Live will have a couple of teams at the event.

Please, bring the flag from where you were born! English, Welsh, German, French, Catalonia etc &...
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AUOB Dundee [1] main camera #AUOBDundee: This is our front of march and main camera at the rally

--- Livestream by Independence Live. Please Like & share! ---

Independence Live will have a couple of teams at the event.

Please, bring the flag from where you were born! English, Welsh, German, French, Catalonia etc &...
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£6 million digital network launched.
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The All Under One Banner march passes along Arbroath Road, Dundee.
Music from the Graham Brown Band "I can hear the nation tonight"
A big thank you to the family who invited me into their home, so I could hang out their living room window.
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Replying to 
@peterabell I think an ultimatum needs to be written into Nicola's speech in October if the deal on Brexit is still up in the air. Reiterate the red lines that the SNP have consistently stuck to (single market access) and say if they are not met then a referendum shall be called.

It would be a massive mistake not to announce something when the inevitability of crashing out of the EU is weeks away.
Replying to 
+ScotNational The point about independence being the subject of the first clause in the SNP's constitution is a fair one. The aspiration to restore Scotland's rightful constitutional status really does infuse everything that the party does. Although, of course, it must these days concern itself also with matters relating to its role as the party of government. 

The decisions have already been made. The electorate has granted the current SNP administration a mandate to hold a new independence referendum and this has been approved by the Scottish Parliament. All that is left is to declare the date. And that is a matter for Nicola Sturgeon. she was elected leader because the membership trusts her judgement. We gave her the job. Now we must let her do it. 

Which is not to say that SNP members and the wider Yes movement shouldn't be offering Nicola Sturgeon every 'encouragement' to act as a matter of some urgency. Indeed, a public clamour for a new referendum is just what the First Minister wants and needs. But a conference resolution specifying a date for the vote - which is what some people seem to want - would diminish the authority of the elected party leader. Even if carried such a motion could not possibly be binding on Ms Sturgeon. She cannot be forced by conference to act against her own judgement. If she was unable to accept the date set by conference, she would placed in the situation of having to defy the conference or resign. 

The place for word on the new referendum is in Nicola Sturgeon's address. And there really has to be something meaningful and substantial about the referendum in her speech. Back in June, I was rather critical of Nicola Sturgeon's speech to the Spring Conference in Aberdeen. I pointed out that there was something missing. (https://goo.gl/ttj254) 

 "What many of us did hope for was some sense of awareness of the precariousness of Scotland's situation and the need for urgency in addressing the threat to our Parliament and our democracy. At the very minimum we expected an acknowledgement of the rising power and presence of the Yes movement. We were given neither. 

When Nicola Sturgeon said that we should not focus on the when of independence, that felt like a rebuke to a Yes movement which is increasingly concerned that the the consequences of delaying the referendum are not being recognised or appreciated by the SNP leadership. Those concerns most certainly aren't being addressed by senior SNP politicians. And those who hoped for better from Nicola Sturgeon must now be feeling extremely disappointed." 

I fully recognise that this is a difficult decision. Whatever date Nicola Sturgeon chooses for the new referendum she will have to face, not only the virulent condemnation of the British establishment, but also an onslaught from those within the Yes movement who can't resist the urge to tell the world that they think she's got it wrong.

Nonetheless, this is a time to be bold, decisive and assertive. Among all the factors Nicola Sturgeon is required to consider, she must take account of the fact that the independence cause desperately needs some strong and positive leadership right now. And I mean, right now! Whatever Iain Macwhirter may say (The SNPs legendary party unity could be finally about to crack - archive.fo/THBCi), the patience exhibited by members suggests that party solidarity is holding up very well. That the party and the Yes movement are prepared to wait until October - despite being poised for action - demonstrates just how much Nicola Sturgeon is trusted.

But there is a limit. The power of the Yes movement cannot be contained indefinitely. Nicola Sturgeon would be well advised to keep this in mind as she writes her speech for the SNP Conference in October.
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By Russell Bruce Newsnet has obtained the dataset behind Sunday’s story in the Observer on the shift in support in 112 UK constituencies from Leave to Remain. We wanted to see the detail of the changes in Scotland, even although Scotland supported Remain convincingly in 2016. The big changes have apparently taken place place in […]The post Exclusive: Scotland Remain polling data analysed...
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You might have seen that I was name-checked the other day in an article by Iain Macwhirter about a supposed danger of SNP disunity after Nicola Sturgeon makes her long-awaited decision in the autumn.  I think the first thing to say here is that any implication that there could eventually be a threat to Ms Sturgeon's own position as leader is faintly ludicrous.  She's by some distance the...
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MPs are heading back to their constituencies from sticky hot Westminster and have the chance to reflect on what has been another utterly shambolic – shocking twelve months of Tory government. Theresa May’s year has been plagued by Tory infighting and failure. 
Scotland flag - the saltire Made In Scotland. For Scotland.
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