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Hamish Macdonell rss

Keynote Speech By New Leader Of The SNP Nicola Sturgeon

Nicola Sturgeon’s plans for the Crown Estate — my response to the Scottish government

10 December 2014 15:43

My article about Nicola Sturgeon’s plans for the Crown Estate caused some excitement within her administration. All untrue, they say. They have written a response (below). So what could have… Continue reading

32 Comments
Nicola Sturgeon talks to carers during a meeting in Renfrew, Scotland. LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images

Nicola Sturgeon shows how she means to go on by picking a fight with the Queen

7 December 2014 22:42

Downing Street, we are told, wants to ‘re-set’ the relationship between Westminster and Holyrood after the referendum. UK ministers apparently want an atmosphere of ‘co-operation; to exist between the two governments. Well,… Continue reading

502 Comments
Yes, we're pulling our hair out too. Johann Lamont, who quit today as Scottish Labour leader - their 6th in 15 years. Photo: Getty Images.

Labour invented Scottish devolution. Why can’t it devolve?

25 October 2014 18:33

One of the greatest ironies of these past 15 years of Scottish home rule is that Labour never really got devolution. Sure, it talked a good game. From Donald Dewar… Continue reading

170 Comments
(Photo: Getty)

The Yes camp is gaining ground in the Scottish independence referendum

17 August 2014 10:21

The Yes camp is closing the gap. That is the clear message from two new opinion polls published this morning. Both polls – ICM for Scotland on Sunday and Panelbase… Continue reading

220 Comments
Television Debate Between Alex Salmond And Alistair Darling

Alex Salmond fails to land the blow he desperately needed

5 August 2014 22:58

Many people, I’m sure, will already be calling the first TV debate in Alistair Darling’s favour. That is a fair point to make but it was not quite as straightforward… Continue reading

154 Comments
(Photo: Andrej Isakovic/Getty)

The SNP might not realise it, but in sport, there’s a difference between patriotism and nationalism

23 July 2014 8:30

The BBC should probably think about issuing a public warning before it starts broadcasting the Commonwealth Games from Glasgow tonight. Something along the lines of ‘viewers of a nervous disposition… Continue reading

135 Comments
Image: Getty

Today’s poll shows Alex Salmond running out of time

13 July 2014 11:07

There really isn’t much time left. From today, there are just nine and a half weeks until we go to the polls in the independence referendum. Also today, we have… Continue reading

201 Comments
Image: Getty

New report puts price on freedom – but we are still none the wiser

22 June 2014 21:08

You can’t put a price on freedom. Well now, it seems, you can: or rather, one senior academic has done so and his verdict? Scottish independence will cost £200 million. On… Continue reading

106 Comments
First Minister Alex Salmond Presents The Case Scotland's Economic Future

If a men-only referendum was held, Salmond would win comfortably

15 June 2014 14:10

Another day another poll or, rather, another day and we have another two polls on independence. Scotland on Sunday today published an ICM poll which found support for Yes on… Continue reading

133 Comments
Image: Getty

Salmond, cybernats and a row that could be one of the key moments of the independence referendum campaign

11 June 2014 16:00

All through this referendum campaign, there have been two battles: one has been in the open. This has generally been courteous and respectful. But the other battle has been hidden… Continue reading

214 Comments
A warm welcome for Nigel Farage on a campaign visit to Edinburgh. Image: PA

How a Ukip victory could hasten the break-up of the UK

19 May 2014 11:48

In a sense it could be the political version of the law of unintended consequences. There is Nigel Farage insisting that he is a British unionist, that he opposes Scottish nationalism… Continue reading

144 Comments
The Sunday Herald becomes the first Scottish newspaper to say Yes to independence.

The Sunday Herald says ‘yes’ to Scottish independence. Which newspaper will be next?

4 May 2014 11:44

If you are going to declare a clear political affiliation, you might as well do it big. In cricketing terms, if you are going to slash at the ball, slash… Continue reading

224 Comments
Screen Shot 2014-04-20 at 15.01.39

A new poll shows Scotland on the brink of independence. Time for the ‘no’ side to panic

20 April 2014 11:05

Politicians always manage to take some crumbs of comfort from opinion polls but, if you are Alistair Darling, it would be difficult to find anything positive in the dramatic new poll published by… Continue reading

636 Comments
SNP Leader Alex Salmond Delivers His Keynote Speech At The SNP Conference

Alex Salmond’s message to Labour supporters: vote ‘yes’ to escape the Tories

12 April 2014 17:28

When is a conference not a conference? When it’s a rally. Sitting in the hall listening to Alex Salmond this afternoon, it was hard to ignore the feeling that this… Continue reading

228 Comments
Scottish Labour Party Leader Johann Lamo

Enough complacency. Enough bitching. The No camp needs to fight to save the Union

1 April 2014 10:14

Look up complacency in the dictionary and the chances are you will find a picture of a Scottish unionist next to it. For months – no, make that years – politicians… Continue reading

91 Comments
Image: Getty

Alistair Darling needs football fans—not financiers—to save the union

26 March 2014 12:08

Has the No camp got it wrong? This may seem an odd question to ask when the unionists are still leading in the referendum race but there is no doubt that… Continue reading

17 Comments
Image: Getty

Ed Miliband pushed left-wing Scots’ buttons today – but he needed to do more

21 March 2014 16:29

English Labour leaders tend to find Scottish party conferences difficult. The Scots tend to be more old-fashioned, unreconstructed and left-wing than their English colleagues which can make it difficult for English… Continue reading

13 Comments
Johann Lamont - a match for Red Ed (Photo: Getty)

Johann Lamont shows Labour’s true colours – red in tooth and claw

18 March 2014 16:45

Just occasionally in politics, the mask slips and political parties reveal what they really are – rather than what they would like us to believe they are. Today in Edinburgh… Continue reading

135 Comments
David Cameron addressing the Scottish Conservative Party. Image: Getty

Did David Cameron just promise Scots devo max?

14 March 2014 16:45

Scotland will get more powers – including control over taxes – if Scots vote No in September. That was the message David Cameron took to the Scottish Conservative Party at its… Continue reading

147 Comments
Ming Campbell. Image: Getty

Ming Campbell knows how to kill off the Scottish nationalists. Shame no-one’s listening to him.

10 March 2014 14:13

The independence campaign could be over now. The Yes campaign could be all but destroyed with six months to go before the vote. The unionists have it within their power to… Continue reading

313 Comments
Image: Getty

How Osborne’s tactics drew Standard Life into the independence debate

28 February 2014 14:48

In politics, as in comedy, timing is everything. It is worth bearing this in mind when considering George Osborne’s ‘you can’t keep the pound’ speech and what has happened since. There… Continue reading

186 Comments
‘Scotland – stay with us’. Image: Getty

David Bowie, George Osborne and the PCS union have given Scottish nationalists momentum

21 February 2014 11:27

Ask any election strategist and they’ll tell you that momentum is everything. For the past 18 months, the No campaign has had all the momentum in the referendum debate. The Yes… Continue reading

156 Comments
Image: Getty

Now Scots know: an independent Scotland won’t be Salmond’s ‘same-but-slightly-different’ vision

16 February 2014 16:50

Personally, I’m now waiting for the Queen to get involved. After all, there’s not much left of Alex Salmond’s independence-but-not-independence blueprint that is left intact. First it was his ‘we’re going… Continue reading

339 Comments
George Osborne is being serious when he says Scotland won't keep the pound (Photo: Shaun Curry/AFP/Getty

Osborne is serious. An independent Scotland won’t be keeping the pound

13 February 2014 16:39

Could it be Bodie and Doyle? Perhaps Starsky and Hutch? Morse and Lewis? Whoever provided the inspiration, someone in Downing Street has clearly been watching too many old TV cop shows… Continue reading

110 Comments
Image: Getty

Cameron’s unionism speech was laudable in substance, but it made him look afraid of Alex Salmond

7 February 2014 14:53

I got a text from a mischievous friend in London this morning. ‘David Cameron has asked me to ask you not to leave the UK. We would miss you all… Continue reading

252 Comments