Sunday National, 18th April 2021. “The choice is basically this: Does Scotland want to be a small, independent nation, likely back in the EU but with new barriers to trade and travel with the rest of the UK; or does it wish to remain in the UK, with its own powers over some areas but subordinate … Continue reading Resisting the Restoration
Sunday National, 11th April 2021. If you know anything about Scots law, chances are you know that alone in the world, our juries can return one of three verdicts in criminal cases: guilty, not guilty, and not proven. But perhaps not for much longer. The Scottish Tories have pledged to abolish not proven in the … Continue reading Not proven?
Sunday National, 4th April 2021. My military correspondent was unimpressed: “I see the Tories have gone from Thatcher as prime minister commanding a Chieftain tank, to Ruth Davidson on a piece of self-propelled artillery they’d hired for an hour, to Douglas Ross on an armoured car. Their military stunts can’t fall much lower.” Karl Marx … Continue reading Parking the bus with Douglas Ross
Sunday National, 28th March 2021. “Thatcher Thatcher, milk snatcher!” The former Prime Minister never quite shrugged off the soubriquet she earned in 1971 when, as education secretary in Ted Heath’s government, she decided the free market should decide whether Britain’s children got a carton of milk in the morning. Many went thirsty. When Holyrood unanimously … Continue reading The elephant’s bad dreams
Sunday National, 21st March 2021. Spring has sprung. This week, the sun finally broke through the long winter of anxiety, fear, and utter tedium of the last few months. Daffodils are blooming. Green shoots are rising. Some taps, I can confirm, were aff – and not just to receive a swift shot of AstraZeneca. This … Continue reading Spring has sprung! (Well, kinda…)
Sunday National, 14th March 2021. Good, basic information can be hard to come by – particularly when things get politically heated. If you’ve been watching Holyrood this week, you can’t have missed the controversy around the Hate Crime and Public Order Bill which passed on Wednesday with cross-party support, 82 votes to 32. In the … Continue reading What’s actually *in* the Hate Crime Bill?
Sunday National, 7th March 2021. In Holyrood this week, much of the attention was fixed on committee proceedings in the Robert Burns room – and rightly so – but back in the main chamber on Tuesday, MSPs unanimously passed the Defamation and Malicious Publications (Scotland) Bill. In a torrid political week, you could be forgiven … Continue reading Why reforms to Scotland’s defamation law were long overdue
Sunday National, 28th February 2021. The law can be tricky to get your head around at the best of times, but for anyone trying to follow the work of Holyrood’s Committee on the Scottish Government Handling of Harassment Complaints over the last two weeks – understanding the legal context governing what witnesses can and cannot … Continue reading Understanding the legalities behind the Holyrood Committee
Sunday National, 21st February. “The overall view I formed of St Ninian’s was depressing. The institution was established in naivety, on the basis of facile assumptions and burdensome borrowings. Brothers and staff (and visitors) included paedophiles, violent men, and inadequate teachers. It was an undesirable outpost, remote from the Order’s centre of operations in Great … Continue reading Victims of the horrors at St Ninians deserve our attention
Sunday National, 14th February 2021. “All my life, people have been insisting that social class is no longer relevant” Darren McGarvey says in the opening of Class Wars, a new documentary series whose first episode aired on BBC Scotland this week. Darren’s mission? To “prove to you just how entrenched social class is in Scotland.” … Continue reading The superpower of Scotland’s middle classes? Invisibility