All hail the Stupid Party

By Derek Bateman The chorus of whines is alive in the shires of England, and in Scotland the sound of deflating ...

Commentary | Thursday, 27 November 2014 | Comments

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BBC Scotland holds its breath on Holyrood accounta

PQ Insider considers what the Smith Commission might say about Scottish broadcasting Here in BBC Scotland very close attention will be ...

Commentary | Wednesday, 26 November 2014 | Comments

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Surreal Scotland

By Derek Bateman Have we become Irish? I ask because there is such a hilariously contradictory mood around that it could ...

Commentary | Monday, 24 November 2014 | Comments

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More in: Commentary

News - Scotland and International

All hail the Stupid Party

By Derek Bateman The chorus of whines is alive in the shires of England, and in Scotland the sound of deflating bagpipes can be heard. If the drones could fashion a dirge it would be Smith’s Retreat from Devo Max. God, but it’s embarrassing for old Scotland to have such a gang of spivs and chancers picking over her entrails to see ... Read More

News in Brief

Glasgow sets standard on climate change

By A Newsnet Reporter Glasgow University has become the first in the UK to promise to pull its i... Read More

Scottish Greens welcome 3000 new members

The Scottish Greens are thanking over 3,000 new members who have joined the party since the close of polls on ... Read More

SNP membership surge means party could overtake UK Lib Dems

The wave of democratic engagement resulting from the referendum is continuing, the SNP has said today, as 16,694 new members ... Read More

SSP referendum meeting halted after pro-Union protestors berate locals

  By a Newsnet reporter  A public event to discuss the referendum, arranged by the Scottish Socialist Party, has had to ... Read More

Greens across Europe show support for Yes vote

Green Yes, the Scottish Green Party's campaign for a Yes vote in the referendum, will today (16 Sep) show the ... Read More

Darlings for Yes

Alistair Darling's plea to Scots to vote No has been given a giant thumbs down - by his own namesakes.  Another ... Read More

More in: In Brief

by Gerry Hassan

The Scotsman, January 14th 2010

Scotland has experienced an interesting experiment.  Four years of the first ever SNP administration, the first ever Scottish Government committed to independence.  Now is surely an appropriate time to assess how much this has changed the SNP and Scotland and what the prospects for future change are?

This has been a decent administration, one that in many areas has had or attempted to articulate the right instincts on a range of economic, social and cultural matters. It has felt like Scotland’s Government, our national and international voice.

by David Malone

A friend of mine had an interesting conversation with a Swiss banker last week in the Cafe Metropole in Zurich.  The cafe happens to be just across the road from the Swiss National bank and is a favourite watering hole.

The Swiss banker suggested that the big Swiss banks and the Swiss National bank are beginning to have a good old panic about the strength of the Swiss franc, what that strength is doing to their exports (think pharmaceuticals) and the government's inability to do anything about it.

by Alex Porter, Economy Editor

The SNP government aims to raise £30 million to pay for public services by taxing Scotland's predatory supermarket chains.

With the UK coalition about to slash the Scottish block grant by £1.3 billion and with workers already facing pay restraint the SNP government are looking at ways in which to spread the pain and protect front line jobs.

by Alex Porter, Economy Editor

Results of a shocking new survey conducted by YouGov show that 5 percent of people in Scotland - equivalent to 207,500 card-holders - have used credit cards to pay their mortgage or rent in the last 12 months.

The findings (1) are extremely worrying according to Graeme Brown, director of Shelter Scotland, the housing and homelessness charity which commissioned the survey:

Electricity transmission charges in Scotland are acting as a disincentive to renewable energy projects a lobby group has warned.

Highlands and Islands Transmission Working Group (HITWG) has said that the current transmission grid charging system is unfair and are urging reform in order to provide a “level playing field”.

by Alex Porter, Economy Editor

Almost three-quarters of Scotland's businesses - 74% - support the SNP Government's proposed 'supermarket tax', which aims to raise £30 million for public services, according to Scotland's most important business organisation - the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) Scotland.

With the Holyrood elections approaching the supermarket chains are behind a campaign to have the SNP drop the levy. This campaign by the corporate giants will promote the message that town centres and retailers in general will suffer, however evidence shows that around 92.3% of the tax will be paid by the big five out of town chains: Tesco, Asda, Morrison, Sainsbury and B&Q.

The First Minister has repeated his call for the Tory-LibDem coalition to use some of the £1 billion of extra revenues the UK Treasury will receive from rising oil prices to introduce a fuel stabiliser.

Mr Salmond insisted that such a mechanism is urgently needed and condemned the lack of action that has left families and businesses having to deal with rising fuel and VAT costs.

by Kenneth Roy

For my own reasons, I remember the week well. The other half of my professional life is concerned with the organisation of courses for young people, and the week in question happened to coincide with one of these courses south of the border. The programme director, anxiously scanning the headlines, confided in me that she was concerned that our Royal Bank of Scotland cheque, for many thousands of pounds, made payable to the conference hotel, would not be honoured – not because we had no money in the bank to cover it, but because the bank itself would be bust by the end of the day. It seemed a real possibility.


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