Follow up to Pro Unionists Complain About...

April 2nd, 2018

Thanks to YES Scotland's Future for sharing my original post, I never expected such detailed replies. It appears that we all think the same but there seems to be no plan or strategy to get our points across.

I work in retail and talk to loads of folk about politics and independence. Mentioning SNP normally generates the usual "I hate the SNP" or "Sturgeon gets on my tits banging on about independence all the time" We've all had those conversations. Something had to change to engage people more. It took a while to work it out but I couldn't believe how easy the solution was. I simply changed my approach and removed SNP from my conversations.

Where I used to say something like "did you know the SNP froze council tax for 10 years" I now say something like "Did you know that council tax in Scotland was frozen for 10 years between 2007 and 2017 whereas in England it was only frozen for 5 years between 2010 and 2015 AND in Scotland Council tax has only risen between 3% and 6% over the last 11 years whereas in England over the last 5 years it rose by 12% in Newcastle and 38% in Lambeth" This changes the conversation to a proper conversation where they want to know more, no more hating It's really that simple.

So I got to thinking why "Better Together" won. The answer is simple as well, they weren't Tories, Labour, Lib Dem etc, they were "Better Together" whereas the "YES" campaign was either SNP or Alex Salmond but mostly Alex Salmond. He wasn't being grilled by the Tories, Labour, Lib Dems on a daily basis he was grilled by "Better Together" a different face every day vs Alex Salmond except on live debates where it was basically every party vs SNP, he never stood a chance. "YES" never had army of faces to take over so Alex Salmond became the villain. That was the image that was portrayed throughout the campaign and "YES" lost.

This time "YES" has to be "YES", not SNP, not Nicola Sturgeon. It has to be an army of "YES" spokespeople. Eliminate SNP and Nicola Sturgeon as much as we can and "YES" will win. Don't let "Better Together" dictate the agenda. So who are "YES"? I have no idea and neither does anyone else I know . I should know considering how much time I spend talking about it. I could research it but I do have a life as well so if anyone knows, you can comment on here. Either way this is a problem that needs fixed pretty damn quick. It can't be everyone else vs Sturgeon this time.

I read something somewhere about setting up a code of conduct for "YES" pages but I can't find it so if anyone has any info on how that is going then please let us know.

We don't have time to waste so if anyone has any suggestions to add either to the article or this post then please join in.

Another thing to remember we aren't only dealing with Pro Unionists in Scotland. Pro Unionists from the rest of the UK are also getting involved. There are approximately 53 million people in the UK over the age of 16 ( source ) that all have an opinion BUT not a vote. What's my point you may ask? Well "YES" only got 1.6m votes which is pretty impressive considering the amount of voices with opinions and resources to take us on.

Why is this important now you may ask? Well, I have tried to find out more about some of the "personal" pro union pages and their respective websites and found out they have paid to keep registrant details private. There's nothing wrong with that, it's perfectly legal BUT why would you pay to hide your identity for a personal site. (Background info : I am a web developer with over 20 years experience and never once has anyone requested registrant privacy, so for an individual to to do this for a personal site is very odd indeed) Are some of these pages being funded to flood Facebook? who knows but it's something to consider going forward.

Let's find a way to working together so we're ready when the tine finally comes.

Pro Unionists Complain About... Everything

April 1st, 2018

WARNING : This post contains language that some readers may find offensive. 

I have recently been researching Facebook groups to find out what the pro unionists are doing to promote the Union and convince YES voters that they are wrong. I wanted to find out why we are better together but what I found wasn't a pretty picture. I followed  4 groups but there wasn't really anything different to separate them from each other. They rehash the same content over and over, flooding your feed if you happen to follow them. Every meme came with barage of abuse and hatred aimed at the SNP and nationalists. The hatred towards Nationalism in Scotland is very real and very ugly. Whatever your views on independence you have to look at facebook pages such as the The UK Union Voice, United Against Separation, Scotland In Union, We Are the 55% etc They all share the same "PRO UK Movement" memes slating the SNP and the nationalists using personal insults, Snazis is one of their favourites. 

The hatred and personal insults are beyond anything I would have expected.
Comparing Nicola Sturgeons Mother to Elton John, ( see post
With no evidence that it was Scottish Nationalists that put up a banner saying "TORY SCUM OUT", this post was doing the rounds.  ( see post )  "the face of extremist nationalist politics in Scotland in 2018. Frankly insulting to the 18,291 people who voted Scottish Conservative in Stirling last June."

Comments included...

  • "This is NOT ok in any way. Calling people ‘scum’ is pathetic" 
  • "there's no place in Scotland for that kind of people who want to destroy and shame"
  • "Appalling low standard of politics!"
  • "Freedom of speech is not freedom to insult and intimidate. The lot of them should be arrested and charged."


All valid points but then the haters spoil it all...

  • "You can tell by the clothing and that lunatic on the right there all probably on the dole and spend their time smoking cannabis"
  • "There’s a village somewhere missing it’s idiots"
  • "absolutely brainwashed moronic idiots"
  • "lets see jimmy krankie get them arrested for hate crimes"
  • Just proving the point the INBRED SNATZI CULT are the real Scum and Scotlands Shame"
  • "Retards!"
  • "just a bunch a brain washed deluded sheep shagging trannys!"

Anyone else see the irony in their comments.

On Alex Salmond

  • "He’s a cunt"
  • "fukin fud"
  • "Comrade Alexei Salmondski - a total fuckwit, "


What nice people and still no positive stories as to why we're better together.

Then we get...

  • Scots use the British Army to help get NHS workers to hospital during the beast from the east. forgetting the fact that we pay for them and that they were used in England as well. 
  • They slate the SNP for using the Green Party to support them, ignoring the fact that the Westminster Conservative Government paid over £1bn to the DUP to prop them up.
  • They complain about the repair bill to Bute house, ignoring the massive repair bills to Downing Street, Westminster, Buckingham Palace etc
  • They complain that Nicola Sturgeon doesn't pay council tax for Bute House, ignoring the fach that Theresa May doesn't pay council tax on Downing Street.
  • They complain that there's too much focus on renewable energy then complain when pollution experts resign as the low emission zones weren't making enough progress.
  • They complain Alex Salmond has a show on RT but ignore that Stan Collymore has a show and Sam Delanay regulary has Westminster MPs past and present on his show on RT as well. 
  • They complain council Tax is rising in Scotland for the 2nd year in a row, between 3% and 6%  if councils decided to raise them and ignoring the 10 year freeze in Scotland. They also ignore that over a 5 year period in England some councils have increased council tax between 12% and 38% (38% in Lambeth)
  • They complain that we don't pay the nurses enough, ignoring the fact they get a better hourly rate in Scotland than they do elsewhere in the UK

The hypocricy is unbelievable.

The list goes on and on. Whenever I asked for figures or sources I was met mostly with silence. They hate nationalism on a Scottish level but love it on a British level. They focus on details so small that it makes your head spin, such as the 0.3 % difference between Scotland and the rest of the UK regarding vacant shops. They don't seem to understand that that some people love independence the same way they love the union.

For the most part the YES pages try to present a more positive outlook. However, they do seem a bit blinkered when it comes to SNP failings but at least they don't resort to constant personal attacks and abuse. That's not to say it's not there, it's just not the norm. Recently though, I've noticed more and more meme type posts that do nothing to further the cause of independence instead they sort of cheapen the argument. The YES campaign must resist the cheap tactics of the Unionists.

A structured approach is what's needed. Join the pro union pages and question their figures but don't join in with the hating. Say your point and move on.  Show figures to prove your point. I've even started asking YES pages to provide sources and figures etc in the hope that when something does get published, it is easy for people to research. It would be an impossible task to expect everyone to to check if what's being said is fake or not. So if you post something please provide sources.  Where you see inacuraces then correct them - here's a great example 

Scotland is a forward thinking, inclusive country with a wealth of natural resources,  we are more than able to stand alone and prosper but we won't get that if we take the same approach as the pro unionist. We need to win with facts. We need to promote our cause, not constantly defend it. The YES movement isn't only the SNP so, when we talk about independence we need to remove the political party aspect. When putting your messages across, replace SNP with "YES Movement" or "YES Scotland". It's a very subtle but powerful change.

We all know how easy it is to get manipulated by word play, marathon to snickers, jif to cif, Thomson to Tui ect, say it enough and the change becomes normal. The weather now refers to South Britain instead of the South of England. In the same breath they then mention Wales as Wales but correct me if I'm wrong but is Wales not in South Britain!!!,  a small but subtle change but very important in the Brexit branding era. Listen out for it. once you hear them mentioning North Britain, South Britain and East Britain you can't unhear it. I haven't heard them say West Britain yet as that one sounds more uncomortable than the others. They still metion Scotland and Wales. Are they now rebranding England as Britain?. Maybe I'm being a bit paranoid here but listen out for it and you'll soon agree.

So, let's do the same. when talking about Independence, stop talking about SNP and start talking YES. Stop talking Britain down and Start talking Scotland up.

Just Saying...

Right to Buy - A right to destroy communities and local economies

May 14th, 2017

The Tories are promising to build more council houses BUT they can be sold in 10 - 15 years.
 
Right to buy was disgrace that sold everyone short. We now have family homes that are occupied by right to buy pensioners. They needed those houses when they were young and had families and now they deprive other families of the same happiness a good family home can provide.
 
Schools have suffered in those areas as people can't afford to live there and if they can, they can't afford kids as they both have to work just to afford a home.
 
The local economy suffers as smaller households require less resources. Shops close, Less local employment, less income generated for local community causes. Amenities that make areas attractive to families such as libraries, schools, Swimming Pools, playparks community centres etc are forced to close. The very things that made people buy their council houses in the first place have gone and they are stuck with houses that don't have their real selling potential anymore as the area has nothing to offer
 
To sell social housing Is a false economy. Society is fragmented now, communities no longer exist in the way they used to. Families don't live in the same areas anymore yet the government expect families to care for each other as if we all lived around the corner from each other. Grandparents can look after the grandchildren so their children can work and children can care for their elderly parents. Hardly feasable if they live at opposite ends of the city
Meanwhile the government slashes social care budgets and school budgets, all for the short term gain for selling a house. The long term benefits of social housing and real communities have to outweigh the greed of the few.
 
This is not the country people I talk to want to live in
 
Just Saying...


News Source http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election-2017-39911569

Think carefully before strengthening Mays power

April 30th, 2017

Let's look at the morals of our future dictator. Sorry I'll rephrase that, let's look at the voting history of our potential future Prime Minister.

  • Generally voted against measures to prevent climate change
  • Generally voted for the privatisation of Royal Mail
  • Has never voted on greater public control of bus services
  • Generally voted for higher taxes on plane tickets
  • Consistently voted for mass surveillance of people’s communications and activities
  • Generally voted for requiring the mass retention of information about communications
  • Generally voted against a lower voting age
  • Generally voted against transferring more powers to the Scottish Parliament
  • Generally voted against transferring more powers to the Welsh Assembly
  • Almost always voted for fixed periods between parliamentary elections
  • Generally voted against allowing terminally ill people to be given assistance to end their life
  • Almost always voted for more restrictive regulation of trade union activity
  • Almost always voted against an annual tax on the value of expensive homes (popularly known as a mansion tax)
  • Generally voted against a banker’s bonus tax
  • Generally voted for increasing the rate of VAT
  • Generally voted for higher taxes on alcoholic drinks
  • Generally voted against spending public money to create guaranteed jobs for young people who have spent a long time unemployed
  • Generally voted for a reduction in spending on welfare benefits
  • Generally voted against paying higher benefits over longer periods for those unable to work due to illness or disability
  • Consistently voted against raising welfare benefits at least in line with prices
  • Generally voted for reducing housing benefit for social tenants deemed to have excess bedrooms (which Labour describe as the "bedroom tax")
  • Almost always voted against a right to remain for EU nationals already in living in the UK
  • Generally voted against more EU integration
  • Consistently voted for the Iraq war
  • Almost always voted against the hunting ban
  • Generally voted against laws to promote equality and human rights

 

A vote for the tories will certainly strengthen her power trip. Interpret the list however you wish but please read it carefully and think about it when deciding how to cast your vote.

Just Saying...

Source : https://www.theyworkforyou.com/mp/10426/theresa_may/maidenhead/votes

 

 

General Election : Party or Country?

April 28th, 2017

Question Time on BBC1 on 27 Apr was discussing the Election and if it was for the good of the country or for the good of the Tory party. It's plain from the responses that it was cleary a party driven decision however, the same old nonsense about the opposition blocking Brexit etc where trotted out yet no one clearly sees the obvious which is...

When Theresa May called the General Election she said

“After the country voted to leave the EU, Britain needed certainty, stability and strong leadership. Since I became prime minister the government has delivered precisely that,” she then went on to say..

“The country is coming together but Westminster is not. Labour have threatened to vote against the final agreement we reach. The Lib Dems have said they want to grind the business of government to a standstill. Unelected members of the House of Lords have vowed to fight us every step of the way.”

Let's think about that in more detail. Look at the current make up of Westminster
Party Seats
330 Conservative
229 Labour
54 Scottish National Party
9 Liberal Democrat
8 Democratic Unionist Party
4 Independent
4 Sinn Fein
3 Plaid Cymru
3 Social Democratic & Labour Party
2 Ulster Unionist Party
1 Green Party
11 Speaker
1 UK Independence Party
1 Vacant

Total number of seats 650
Working Government Majority 17

The Tories have a majority of 17 seats so that means she can't blame anyone else for opposing her plans, she already has a majority. So she blames everyone else when the truth is, she doesn't have the full support of her party, it's as simple as that. If she had the full support of her party even with a slim majority of 17 she wouldn't need to go to the polls.

Let's make no mistake of her intentions, not only does she want to crush any political oppositon, she wants to silence those in her own party that have the integrity to challenge her opinon. 

Theresa May is going win the election there is no doubt about that but we all have the opportunity to deliver a strong oppostion and a smaller majority so use your vote wisely. A vote for the tories is a vote for a dictatorship.

Just Saying...