Irish lessons for Scottish Independence

By Colm Ó Broin  Despite the many predictions made during the Scottish independence debate nobody really knows what the future ...

Commentary | Sunday, 27 July 2014 | Comments

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Are You Sitting Comfortably?

By Derek Bateman Are you panicking? Getting desperate yet? There seems to be a line from the No fantasists that ...

Commentary | Sunday, 27 July 2014 | Comments

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Miliband seeks US link dividends

By George Kerevan It is a rite of passage that aspirant British prime ministers seek an audience with the incumbent ...

Commentary | Wednesday, 23 July 2014 | Comments

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More in: Commentary

News - Scotland and International

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Yes vote could see fair-wage payrise according to new figures

  An estimated 150,000 people - two thirds of them women - could see a pay increase in an independent Scotland, new figures have suggested. When the new National Minimum Wage (NMW) comes into force in October this year, an estimated 150,000 people - or just under seven per cent - of the workforce will be earning the NMW or ... Read More


News in Brief

William McIvanney and Frank Skinner voice support for a Yes vote

William McIvanney, one of Scotland's most celebrated literary talents, and top English comedian Frank Skinner, have each voiced their support ... Read More

Yes Scotland endorsed by Pride Glasgow Chief Executive

Hot on the heels of Scotland’s biggest LGBT event, Pride Glasgow’s Chief Executive has given his backing for a Yes ... Read More

Glasgow benefiting from Scottish Government infrastructure spending

Glasgow is set to be a key centre for bio-medical science as the new facilities under construction at the Southern ... Read More

Indy supporters donate thousands for Foodbank after Yes Cyclist's 500 mile marathon

A Glasgow Foodbank will benefit from the generosity of Yes supporters after they donated thousand of pounds to a crowdfunding appeal. The ... Read More

Sillars and Scottish Socialists to outline case for independence

With many people yet to decide which way to vote in the referendum, former SNP deputy leader Jim Sillars is ... Read More

Labour for Independence to host national event in Edinburgh

Labour for Independence have announced their latest event as part of a national tour which will be held in Edinburgh this ... Read More

More in: In Brief

by Thomas Paterson, Gold Made Simple News

After the tales of silver shortages over the past few weeks – the Canadian Mint reporting that “silver is becoming very difficult to source” – and the ongoing silver backwardation, is it now the turn of gold supply to become tight?

News out of Egypt over the weekend is that it has just banned all gold exports for at least the next four months.  The purpose of the ban is to try an attempt members from the former regime stealing any of the people’s gold on the way out of the door.

Remember that when Tunisia fell Ben Ali’s wife was sent to their central bank and picked up 1.5 tonnes of the people’s gold (about 1/3 of all the nation's gold) and flew it out of the country on on a private jet – note they didn’t waste any time on picking up fiat currency, they wanted things that were real and tangible, they wanted gold.

by Gerry Hassan, The Scotsman, February 26th 2011

Scottish Labour is a party with a great history, tradition and folklore.  This was a party once filled with radicals, firebrands, dreamers, agitators and orators – people who believed in a better world – not just as a vague concept, but a living alternative to the inequities of capitalism.

1980s Labour had its Indian Summer of Robin Cook, Gordon Brown, John Smith and Donald Dewar who combined idealism and pragmatism.  How come then it has ended up with Iain Gray?  Is its current state terminal or if the polls improve, can Scottish Labour once again prove the critics wrong?

We need politicians and political parties until we evolve a better form of politics, yet across the Western world parties are in retreat and crisis.  They are hollowed out and battered by market fundamentalism and global economic forces.

by Hazel Lewry

At the end of the day it’s what we’re all fighting and arguing about the world over.  The personal aspect for us is that Scotland should have the right to “reap her own harvest and ring her own till”.  Yet with the deep conservatism towards change so often displayed by the Scots voter the biggest question is perhaps how best to get there.

We also need to be clear that there is no real democratic right in the United Kingdom for its peoples: to get to vote every half decade or so and have no say whatsoever in between is what we’ve been trained to accept like performing seals, but it’s certainly not real democracy.  We vote, but there’s no way to make those we vote for keep their promises, and they know that.  This is not democracy but it is the system being copied in Scotland today.  Party political systems largely benefit parties, not people.

by Alex Porter

An opinion poll out today, commissioned by the Green party, shows that Labour in Scotland has taken a lead of 9% over the SNP.

The survey, undertaken by YouGov and with a sample size of over 1200 people, puts Labour on 41% on the constituency vote for Holyrood and the SNP on 32% with the Conservatives and Lib Dems on 15% and 8% respectively.

On 27th March, the last Sunday of the month, the ten yearly national census will take place.  Collecting accurate and up to date statistical information about every aspect of Scottish life allows government organisations to plan and fund services accurately, as the census will tell them vital information such as how many elderly people there are, or where there is an increase in number of young people.

For a number of decades, the census has included a question about the ability to speak or understand Gaelic.  The census figures for the Gaelic language have been vital in ensuring that efforts to revive and maintain the language are effectively targeted.  This year, for the very first time, the census will also include a similar question asking about the ability to speak or understand the Lowland Scots language.  As we've often reminded Newsnet Scotland readers, the British government officially recognises Scots as a distinct language requiring protection under the terms of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages.

by G.A.Ponsonby

It brought shame on Westminster and has led to several Labour MPs being convicted of fraud.  It is of course the age old gravy train known as MPs' expenses.

Readers of Newsnet Scotland will be heartened to know that our intrepid researchers are continuing their forensic scrutiny of the Holyrood equivalent known to Scottish journalists as ‘the forbidden zone’ –  namely the MSPs' expenses database.

by Ben Borland

SIR DAVID MURRAY, one of Scotland’s best known Unionists, last night backed Alex Salmond for a second term as First Minister.

The former Rangers chairman supported the Conservatives in last year’s General Election and spoke out against the SNP in 2007 on behalf of Scottish business leaders.

But now he says Mr Salmond “makes a fine First Minister” and his “competent” record proves that he and his party deserve another four years.

The tycoon’s dramatic change of heart is a massive boost for the Nationalists and a further sign that public opinion is turning in the party’s favour ahead of May’s poll.

by Alex Porter, Economy Editor

Britian's GDP contracted by 0.6% in the last quarter of 2010 according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

Scotland UK comparison

Although the same figures are not available specifically for Scotland, the UK numbers do nevertheless provide evidence of divergence between the Scottish and the UK economies.  The contraction in UK numbers takes place against a backdrop of falling Scottish unemployment and rising employment.

Recently enterprise minster Jim Mather, comparing job market statistics, alluded to the divergence of the two economies saying: "For three consecutive monthly labour market statistics releases, we have seen falling unemployment and rising employment in Scotland compared to rising unemployment and falling employment across the UK.

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Newsnet Scotland was launched on 12th March 2010 by unpaid volunteers from Greenock. The site was set up in order to address what we believed to be an imbalance in the reporting of Scottish News and Current Affairs.

A not for profit organisation we support major constitutional change for Scotland whether it be full fiscal autonomy, Devolution-Max or full independence.

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Bob Duncan – Bob writes extensively for Newsnet and has written news pieces as well as opinion pieces.

Lynn Malone – Lynn is a freelance journalist and also Newsnet Scotland's features editor.

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Dave Taylor - Former Data Analyst from the west if Scotland, Dave is Newsnet Scotland's resident polling expert and provides regular expert analysis on polls and surveys, both in terms of occasional articles and advice to the team.

Other writers include G.A.Ponsonby, Martin Kelly and of course some of Scotland’s most respected journalists and commentators who have written commissioned pieces and also allowed us to reproduce their work for free. We include George Kerevan, Lesley Riddoch, David Torrance, Gerry Hassan and Kenneth Roy in this impressive list.

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