Murder

Mar. 6th, 2017 10:25 pm
keresaspa: (Default)
*Insert weak joke about visiting Edinburgh lots before waffling for ages about most recent visit*

Therefore )

Nedderbury

Oct. 8th, 2016 12:33 pm
keresaspa: (Gus Goose)
Such is the regularity with which I go to Edinburgh these days that it hardly seems worth mentioning.

But let's anyway )
keresaspa: (Cartman)
Every time I post to this now I seem to begin with a note to excuse my absence due to the paucity of updates. What can I say, less than auspicious days recently. In the meanwhile however a standing engagement in Edinburgh took me across the sea once more and, as ever, I shall betell the events.

Lay on, MacDuff )
keresaspa: (Starry Plough)
I cock an eye to the Morning Star every now and then, even though it's hardly perfect. On English issues it's generally on the money with its analysis and it does fairly well with the international scene but when it comes to the Celtic fringe it's usually wanting. The soft unionist stance they took with regards to Scottish independence (the logic seemingly being "why should the Jocks get to escape the Tories when we don't?") seemed at odds with the rest of their rhetoric whilst when it comes to this dump they same to slavishly trot out the Sinn Fein line, regardless of how much that party seems to lurch to the right. Heck, were The Hibernian still around it would probably be available in every SF "advice centre" these days.

Seven months ago Martin McGuinness appeared in the pages of the aforementioned paper to announce that he wouldn't abandon the vulnerable. Yesterday he did just that, bowing down to Theresa Villiers and accepting the deep and invasive cuts that the Tory government government has already rent on Britain. At a time when poverty and unemployment are on the rise, McGuinness happily signs off on deep cuts to welfare and tax credits, plunging more and more people into deeper and deeper poverty. Still, it'll have no impact on him and his coterie of stooges, whose big money from the Stormont gravy train is now protected for another few years. With the local health service at breaking point and crisis being declared on a weekly basis he happily signs off on big NHS cuts and public sectors redundancies. None of which will apply to the nepotism factory that is Stormont, where money will continue to be blown on "special advisers", whose only expertise appears to be possessing the same DNA as Assembly members. Meanwhile the so-called republican has also signed off on increased spending on police activity against dissidents who, as Martin claims, are a disgrace to the ideology and should be joining him by showing their republicanism through praising the British queen, upholding and celebrating the British soldiers who butchered our people and participating in an arm of the British government and delivering the demands of the Conservatives.

Don't get me wrong, all five parties are as culpable for this but Sinn Fein's crime is the greatest. The Unionist duo make no bones about being right-wing, the Alliance are the local arm of the cuts-happy Liberal Democrats and the SDLP have been trotting out the "business before people" line for so long that their name is a complete joke but Sinn Fein, when it suits them, still claim to be of the Left and indeed down south are campaigning for election on the very basis that they are democratic socialist. Yet in the North they have once again crapped on the very working classes that elected them in the first place and have delivered them to further and deeper crushing poverty just so as they could protect their own interests. Hell this current "fresh start" is actually a much worse deal than the already egregious Stormont House Agreement that McGuinness rejected recently. How this cretin has lasted so long is beyond reason.

Let's face it, the Assembly has been an unmitigated disaster from start to finish, a bloated, toothless talking shop in which a bunch of completely powerless children can spend hours squabbling over flowers and street names but who, when it comes to the crunch, defer to their masters in Westminster at all times. That I personally voted no to the Good Friday Agreement is cold comfort because all of us are now reaping the thorns of that particular surrender. Resistance is the only option, although it has been made all the harder by the headlong rush that McGuinness and that great Pontius Pilate Gerry Adams made to disarm and castrate the IRA, leaving behind only a poorly armed and informer-riddled dissident rump.

In his classic 1978 psychological study of National Front members Fascists (excellent book, horrendously unimaginative title) Michael Billig demonstrates the tendency of one of the NF members he interviewed to what he describes as "meaning-shift". The man in question talks consistently about his support for voluntarily repatriation but when asked to describe what he means unequivocally endorses compulsory repatriation and yet refuses to alter his language, despite clearly stating that participation in the scheme would be mandatory. The phenomenon of meaning-shift has become an increasing part of the mainstream in recent years, where we have "volunteers" who are forced to work for nothing under threat of the withdrawal of social security or we’re told how we're all in austerity together where "all" actually means just those with very little money to begin with. So let it be the same here now as a bleak future looms for us all, apart from the folks on the hill who have pulled up the drawbridge and ensured that, like their Westminster masters, when they say "we're all in this together", they mean all apart from them and the big companies they have chosen to favour. Dark times all round and Irish republicanism as an ideology is on life support right now. I await the rank hypocrisy of the Easter Rising commemorations next year not so much with bated breath but with an air of morose resignation.

And of course there's one other major reason why McGuinness has been so prepared to sell out his supposed principles for thirty pieces of silver and why right-thinking people should detest the slimy bastard with every fibre of their being, but were I to get into that this load of old toot would most likely be closed down and my sorry arse hauled off to Maghaberry. Frankly I Should Hope Every Reader Maybe Already kNows.
keresaspa: (Percy Sugden)
It's convention that I recount in some detail the events surrounding any journeys I make for the entertainment of the reading none so I suppose I shouldn't break from that tradition following my recent excursion to the occupied territory of Scotland. So without further Apu:

Edinburgh and environs )

Saorsa

Sep. 17th, 2014 08:20 pm
keresaspa: (James Connolly)
Rare are the times that I turn this load of old rubbish over to polemic but given that the Scottish independence referendum is tomorrow you'll forgive me if I go a little old school. I have long nursed a desire to see my cousins across the water make their own way in the world and finally the time has arrived. As once again Scotland suffers under a brutal government that it had no part in electing the opportunity is finally available for them to break that destructive old pattern and determine their own destiny.

No more living in thrall to the whims of England, no more sending off your youth to fight in foreign lands because America says so, no more having to endure grim years of Tory terror that you haven't voted for, no more being branded a Nazi for the simple demand of self-determination and resisting imperialism, no more being patronised within an inch of your life by smug imperialist tossers like Eddie Izzard telling you how much they don't want you to go. Successive Westminster governments have vilipended Scotland and dismissed it as an afterthought. Now the time has finally come to leave behind those dark days of servitude and plough your own way.

Ignore all the unionist negativity about failure and make it a success. Sure, there might be hard times but it's hardly a picnic under the cuts-happy Tories and what would it profit anybody to accept a broken status quo out of fear? Sandy Salmond's Dominion of Scotland might not be true independence but it could be the start of a journey, rather than the end. There was a time when the twenty six counties was a Free State with the treaty ports after all. That the Declaration of Calton Hill might some day be realised it's time to vote yes and let Scotland, long a province, be a nation once again. Today a Dominion, tomorrow the People's Republic.

keresaspa: (Salvador Allende)
Given how the mass media has lined up against it, the very desire for self-determination has been consistently likened to the genocide of six million people and the fact that they're a queer bunch who never vote Tory but nevertheless like to suffer under them every few years I doubt very much that Scotland will be taking her place amongst the states of the world next month. But just in case something earth-shattering does happen on the day before my birthday and Scotland does take on partial dominion status (which, as I previously expounded upon, is all Sandy Salmond is offering) it does rather raise the question of what impact it will have on Northern Ireland.

Just as Sinn Fein's rhetoric in recent years has become a lot more identitaire in nature, so too that of unionism and loyalism has for some time sought to underline their own small-n nationalist credentials by pretending that they constitute an ethnie. Be it through the means of the Ulster-Scots "language" (a combination of dialect, construct and fantasy that lies somewhere between Scouse, Volapük and Klingon in the credibility stakes) or Ian Adamson's "Cruthin" fantasies the idea has been to state that the Protestants in Northern Ireland are an ethnic group and that said ethnic group is virtually identical with the Scots. Leaving aside how ludicrous this notion is (the Protestants in Northern Ireland are about as pure blooded as the Catholics and we're all a big ethnic muddle of each other and several other groups of interlopers, like it or not) it does mean that a big part of the identity is tied to Scotland. Go into any loyalist area, or mixed area where the Catholics are too chicken shit to resist as pictured, and you'll see the saltire everywhere but nowhere will you see the Cross of St. George. Beyond the very top levels of the Unionist establishment England and the English aren't very popular here on any side and, whilst it might be very easy to construct a pro-UK agenda based on keeping tight with our brothers in Scotland, it will be a lot harder to do so based on keeping tight with our distant cousins in England. Happen there will be attempts to play up the English dimension in the plantations but surely even the loyalists wouldn't be gullible enough to swallow that over night.

The Cruthin and Ulster Scots has very occasionally been utilised by those who espoused the minority pro-independence view and I know both Doctor Doctor Kenny McClinton and the Reverend Clifford Peeples (both very occasional readers round these parts - hai guise) used those arguments to support it. It could well prove that were Scotland to go its own way loyalism might be forced to re-evaluate its position and instead call for some of the same, resurrecting the ideas that elements within the UDA dabbled with in the 70s and 80s. Certainly I've yet to hear Salmond suggest that he wants to take this place with him (although I would put nothing past him) so a rethought of position by some might well have to follow. Inevitably there will be those die-hards who never relent but an independent Scotland could potentially divide the unionist-loyalist side to such an extent that this place ends up having three sides, with the republican side the largest by default.

All pointless speculation of course, given that the Scots seem poised to turn down this opportunity (and let me hear one Scot moan about poor treatment from Westminster in the future as it will be your own faults) but were the miracle to happen the knock-on effects for this place could be wide-ranging. The thought of an independent "Ulster" under the dictatorship of former Ulster nationalist Willie Frazer is just too dire to contemplate!
keresaspa: (Cartman)
I've been desperately trying to take some crumb of comfort from these election but I can't. Swept on by the biased "reporting" of the BBC and all the tabloids bar the Mirror, those hateful shits of the UK Independence Party have come top in the European elections and done fairly well in the council elections (although their head cheerleader Nick Robinson is talking shite by calling 163 councillors out of 2,101 an "earthquake"). If there's any justice they will follow the lead of the now virtually irrelevant (outside Pendle at least) BNP and become victims of their own success. After all the BNP's brief period of success in the early to mid 00s led to to them splitting into several little factions and saw their thuggish, frequently barely literate, councillors make total prats of themselves at every opportunity. Mind you, the BNP were fighting against a cordon sanitaire, something UKIP won't have to worry about given that they had the sense to get in some tokens in advance. I swear if I see Nigel Farage's hateful, smug, buck-toothed, squinty-eyed, batrachian face once more I'm a gonna kick this screen in! And an especial boo to all the Rangers-supporting knuckle draggers in Scotland and all the forelock tuggers in AndWales for following their English masters in electing that rabble too. Pish on the lot of you.

Elsewhere Little Miss Le Pen has come top in France to show that the British lurch to the extreme right is not unique. Given France's unusual history with right-wing extremists (along with Italy, it's the only Western European country where being a self-declared neo-fascist is no bar to a leading role in public life, as the likes of Alain de Benoist and Dominique Venner have demonstrated) and the mess both major parties have made of government it's no surprise but still a real shame. Meanwhile in Finland the rightist Finns Party have added an extra seat, the Poles have returned their usual quota of hardcore Catholic racists who claim the label "centre-right" with straight faces and even in Greece a left-wing victory has tempered by three seats for the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn. Stygian gloom the continent over.

Locally we are still waiting on the final results of an election held last Thursday but so far, as I predicted, Sinn Fein have topped the poll and Anderson is back in, with Diane Dodds likely to follow soon. Ho-hum. beyond that it's pick-a-dick between Jim Nicholson, Alex Attwood and Jim Allister for third place with Anna Lo not in the running and bloody UKIP even managing twenty odd thousand votes here. In the local elections the Sinn Fein vote pretty much held and, whilst the DUP shed support, it all seems to have gone to the Ulster Unionists (for reasons unknown) or rewarded the bigoted Strasserism of the Progressive Unionist Party or the reactionary High Toryism of the Traditional Unionist Voice. In among all that the dissident republican campaign got nowhere, with Eirigi, Republican Network for Unity and various independents getting almost nothing (OK, one exception but I'm not much of a 32 County Sovereignty Movement fan personally). Hell even bloody UKIP managed to get three seats here and the total mess that is NI21 took one. If I am to finally take that one crumb of comfort I spoke of earlier it will be from the good people of Black Mountain electing Gerry Carroll, a man I very vaguely know, to Belfast City Council instead of yet another faceless Sinn Fein nobody. On his own and stacked up against the cabal of the big five I can't see him being able to make any real impact on the new council when it finally splutters into life next year (that's right, the old council is continuing for another year in a colossal waste of money) but the fact that somebody, somewhere was prepared to vote against oppression and for the people is heartening anyway.

Now if you'll excuse me I think I'd like to find a pile of coats to hide under for a while.
keresaspa: (Edwige Fenech)
William Frederick McCoy was one of the rabble of hard-faced old bigots who sat for the old Ulster Unionist Party in the Parliament of Northern Ireland during the post-war years. Most of these old codgers were completely faceless old nobodies, reminiscent of the pre-Reform Act MPs in Westminster who came streaming in from the rotten boroughs and in some ways McCoy was no exception, being elected unopposed as member for South Tyrone in four of the six elections he "contested". Probably the only thing worth mentioning about McCoy was that, in contrast to his fellow partymen who were happy for the "Protestant parliament for a Protestant people" to continue as ever, he wanted a stronger guarantee for the continuance of one-sided dominance by virtue of Northern Ireland being granted Dominion status. Former National Front activist and publisher of Ulster Nation David Kerr subsequently seized upon the otherwise forgotten McCoy and used him as an archetype for his own pro-independence rhetoric and, in Kerr's defence, the pamphlet he produced on him is, if one ignores the very obvious polemical aspects, a reasonable bit of work. Long since out of print, given that Kerr's Glenwood Publishing bit the dust years ago, his Ulster Souvenirs shop on the Shankill is now very much a pro-British affair and the last I heard of Ulster Nation somebody up the country was running it and it was being supported by the neo-Nazi British People's Party (no idea if that was Kerr's doing or not, although given his history I wouldn't be surprised), but interesting nevertheless, it must be conceded.

Why is it whenever I see Alex Salmond I always think of WF McCoy? I am on record several times as being a supporter of Scottish independence and I'm not going to rake over old ground by reiterating my reasons but the SNP in general and Salmond in particular leave me cold. The Snips have some reasonable ideas but they've always struck me as a bit too wishy-washy for their own good and I still remember the sectarian anti-Catholic campaign that Kay Ullrich undertook in her failed attempt to win the Monklands East by-election in 1994 at a time when the UVF in Scotland declared the SNP their preferred political party. As for Salmond, the man has always made my flesh my crawl, a greasy, down-market snake oil salesman, happy to flog his own granny for a quick fiver. The current form of "independence" on offer is very much a reflection of the man, crying freedom but happy to continue being ruled by the English monarch, happy to give up economic freedom to keep English currency and breaking from his party's traditions by declaring for NATO. I doubt he can spell principle much less have one. The wheels have, of course, come off now that the Westminster government and their New Labour stooges have warned no union, no quids but that was inevitable, a side effect of Salmond's chronic lack of ambition for Scotland. For what he's offering is not independence but Dominion status, and a watered down one at that. His new Scotland, far from being a revolutionary new dawn, would simply be devolution in all but words, with Scotland still answerable to the Bank of England and the House of Lords and with thousands of British soldiers still based on their soil in the name of helping NATO.

I have encountered many Englishmen and women, both politician and otherwise, trumpeting how much they are opposed to Scotland's independence, apparently completely ignorant of the fact that being told what to do by Englishmen for so long is the reason so many Scots want independence in the first place. As Parnell so rightly said "no man shall have the right to fix the boundary to the march of a nation" and nor should they, so in that respect the opinion of the English is irrelevant. However, as usual, it looks as if the masters are to have their way regardless as all evidence indicates that Salmond has a snowball in Hell's chance of winning the referendum. I guess the majority of Scots are more than happy to be regularly ruled by the Conservative Party despite not voting for them. Strange people. But on the other hand would it even be worthwhile voting for Salmond's Scotland in the first place? He talks a good game about something approaching social democracy but if he wants Scotland tied to the Bank of England does he really think they will have no input into fiscal policy? And if they are to have an input into Scotland's fiscal policy does he really think that monetarist England will be happy for Scotland to go off on a social democratic trip on their coin? If he does then he has his tam o'shanter on too tight. Restoring the old Pund Scottis or even taking on the Euro would have been more radical solutions but the big bluffer had to take the wimp's option and leave himself at the mercy of Cameron, Miliband and the rest of the unionist rabble.

Frankly it's all a bit shitty really. The referendum has come at a time when Scotland is under the command of a leader who has no guts (apart from the ever-expanding one above his belt) and is being put to an electorate who apparently do not have the guts to break from a government that has being treating them shabbily for centuries. I would love to see the day when Scotland takes its rightful place amongst the states of the world but it now seems almost certain that this opportunity will remain untaken and, most likely, the last chance for me to see a free Scotland in my lifetime will go with it. For the SNP a period of chronic opposition and soul-searching will beckon whilst for Scotland a future of being at London's beck and call will await and all that will be achieved will be a final end to the political career of Alex Salmond (although knowing that eel he might still slip his way out of that). What a shame.
keresaspa: (Edwige Fenech)
More proof, were it ever needed, that the game's not straight in Northern Ireland with the announcement that the Apprentice Boys of Derry's punishment for all their recent shenanigans is to be handed two million kicker. Nice work if you can get it, I suppose. There was a time I would get terribly upset about this but these days what's the point as the decisions made here become more ludicrous by the day. When the new centre opens I fully expect the ribbon to be cut by a grinning duo of Martin McGuinne$$ and his paymaster Lizzie Windsor.

Still at least we're not alone in the ridiculous decisions department as I see slimy Salmond and his mob have decided to become pro-NATO. Again I'm not hugely surprised as there are no depths to which the Terry Duckworth lookalike will not sink in his relentless quest for personal power. I am on record as being a strong supporter of an independent Scotland but the future Salmond is mapping out for the proposed country is increasingly making me wonder what the point will be. Getting out of the constant war-zone was one of the gangplanks in the argument for independence but without that it looks increasingly like Salmond is advocating independence just for the sake of it, rather than because he wants genuine change for Scotland. In other words he's following the current Sinn Fein policy of swapping one load of crap for another for reasons of narrow nationalism. Shame on you, Salmond. I remain resolutely pro-independence but a pro-NATO Scotland would be as well staying under the English yoke. Mind you, given that the referendum looks almost certain to end in rejection it's little odds anyway.

Still why should I worry when I can look forward to the brutal ballet that will be Cliftonville versus Dungannon Swifts at Solitude tomorrow. Given my record so far the Reds will have to be happy if they get even a point against the Tyrone hillbillies. Should be fun anyroad, although I had best check the Parades Commission website less the Apprentice Boys of Derry are on the prowl tomorrow again, blocking all access to north Belfast. Better throw some more scrouse at them just in case. Here's to our next merry meeting.

Old infirm

Feb. 14th, 2012 08:59 pm
keresaspa: (Marlene Dietrich)
Imagine a world without Rangers - loyalists having to pretend to support Hearts, Dundee or Morton, Celtic supporters having to pretend to hate Partick Thistle or Queen's Park, Aberdeen supporters having to pretend to hate Caley Thistle, supporters of all the other teams having to get used to hating only Celtic. It just wouldn't seem right would it? What would half of the spides in Belfast wear for a start? What would become of all those tasteful Rangers doors and fences bolted onto to council houses? How would Cash Converters cope with the sudden influx of Rangers-branded sovereign rings, gold chains and the like? What about all the tattoos on pasty arms, chests and arse-cheeks of flabby men from Ballinamallard to Bottacks? Hasn't Andy Fordham suffered enough in his life? Doesn't bacon taste funny these days? Yes, now that Rangers have entered administration there really are more questions than answers.

Despite my perfunctory, superficial, part-time allegiance to the green and white half of the Old Firm I must say that I take no pleasure (well, maybe a little but not a lot) from the current predicament in which the Teds find themselves. Lisa Simpson had it right for just as Sherlock Holmes had his Dr. Moriarty, Mountain Dew has its Mellow Yellow (bit lost on this side of the pond, that one) and even Maggie has that baby with the one eyebrow, so too do Celtic need Rangers to coexist. God knows Scottish football has become a big enough afterthought in recent years but how much worse would that get if there was just one big club rather than two? Either somebody else would have to emerge to fill the void left by Rangers or Celtic themselves would slip back and the SPL would end up around the level of the Maltese League. Certainly there is no club in the rabble of filler teams that could get up anywhere near the level of Rangers any time in the next twenty years so decline and fall would be the only outcome. Admittedly it might make the SPL more competitive if Rangers died and Celtic fell away but equally it could have the reverse effect. It seems boring now with one of two clubs winning every year but imagine a league where Celtic win the title every year without fail as, even if they did decline, they would still be far ahead of the competition (who would lose two big pay days a season from when the Gers are in town and their ground fills up).

So save the Bears it is then. You know, we are often reminded about the "Ulster" connection where Rangers are concerned and they are nearly all supporters to a man so why don't the UDA just buy Rangers and be done with it? It would keep their beloved club afloat, provide a convenient location for the laundering of funny money and allow Jackie McDonald the opportunity to strut about in the manner of Ramzan Kadyrov. Problem solved - get it done.
keresaspa: (Robb Wilton)
My opinion of Scottish Conservatives is a matter of public record. From the UVF's biggest fan in Andrew Bonar Law (New Brunswick-born but a Scot by ancestry and inclination), via fascist and Nazi sympathisers like the Duke of Hamilton and his son Malcolm, heartless Thatcherite git and biscuit tin lid model Nicholas Fairbairn, Michael bloody Ancram (who belongs in any list of the worst people for his propensity to sing in public) to the hateful little shit Michael Gove they are the very epitome of the grand old Belfast saying "shower of bastards". As a consequence the downfall of sleaze-riddled warmonger Liam Fox fills me with much schadenfreude. His involvement with Adam Werritty in shadowy Zionist groups like the Atlantic Bridge would be more than enough for him to go in my book but I wonder what else is going on here. Are they a bit you know what?Wouldn't be the first Tory with a double life would he? Mind you that should probably be triple life as, unless I am very much mistaken Liam Fox already enjoyed a previous acting career under the name Jack Smethurst.

Oh and speaking of right-wing nutjobs getting their comeuppance could somebody please fill me in about the reason, if any, for the religious right's poster girl in Ireland Dana Rosemary Scallon's sudden meltdown in front of the TV cameras the other night? I've been out of town for the last few days (ironically in Dublin, where it was all happening anyway) and as a result starved of internet access and so I was unable to check a story that has now disappeared into the internet ether. So do tell if you know. Bloody mad cow!

Me again

Sep. 30th, 2011 08:19 pm
keresaspa: (Mrs Mack)
Sorry about the sudden break in communication there (like you even noticed) but I have been out of town since Monday. Yes as a late birthday present I hit the road and spent four night in Edinburgh. And a fine time it was too.

It is fair to say that if somebody is at an airport there is an overwhelming probability that they will be either a numb-nuts or a poop-nose. Certainly that is very much the case at Belfast International Airport and my intense hatred of flying was not altered by either experience this time. It's not just the flights themselves (even though they are extremely unpleasant) it is the whole rigmarole that goes along with them, be it having to turn up for a journey a good two hours before it happens, the fact that airports are never anywhere near the places that they are named after or all the unnecessary security fascism that continues a full ten years after the Twin Towers. I mean we can board buses without all that rubbish and they get blown up all the time. So as a consequence of flying being generally crap it was well after four before I arrived in Edinburgh proper and that meant a mad dash from my hotel to Easter Road to get there before five. Yes, for some reason I decided I would go and watch the Hibernian-St. Johnstone match and so I had to get to the ticket office before it closed. No problem in the end leaving me a bit of time to knock about Greyfriars and Cockburn Street where a hipster record shop proved a surprisingly good source of Turkish psychedelia. I managed to explore bits of Leith in the evening before settling down to a fish supper. Kudos to the Scots for continuing to use "supper" rather than the English invention of "and chips" but a big thumbs down for the choice of condiments. Salt and vinegar are, of course, a must, but brown sauce on a fish supper is wrong on so many levels that I don't even know where to begin. The hotel itself was reasonable but I was forced to rescan their Freeview box as it wasn't giving me Challenge TV, which is obviously essential viewing.

On a whim I boarded the train on Tuesday morning and spent the day in scenic Glasgow. Some decent shopping was had but I must say I found the layout of the city very confusing and the fact that a good percentage of the population seemed to be permanently pissed was a little disconcerting. Not a bad day but I'm glad I decided to make Glasgow the city for the day trip and Edinburgh the city to stay in as I much prefer Auld Reekie to Glesga. So about five o'clock I was ready to mosey only to find that my ticket kept being rejected. Consulting with a guard I was told it was an off-peak ticket and as such was invalid until half six unless I paid a bit extra to upgrade. Checking with the ticket office I found out that the "bit extra" was actually £8.40. What a rip-off! Suffice to say I told them to shove it and arsed about for an hour and a half.

A pre-planned route, drawn with the aid of Google Maps some time earlier, was followed on Wednesday, taking me up North Bridge and that as far as Salisbury Place, along the Grange Road and stuff before eventually jigging down Brunsfield as far as Fountainbridge. Inevitably on Google Maps things like that look a straight run that should take about 45 minutes. Inevitably in real life however street signs go walkabout, turnings appear out of nowhere and 45 minutes turns into three hours before you know it. The baking heat, apparently the hottest 28th September on record, didn't help but it was a pleasant enough way to spend the afternoon. Never in my life have I seen so many people who look just like Michelle McManus and I was equally overwhelmed by the ratio of branches of Greggs to supermarkets with salad bars (the mystery of those table-topping performances in the world heart attack leagues becomes less mysterious) but it was a fine way to spend a day nonetheless. The evening was spent at Easter Road in a weird mix of summer and autumn with shirt sleeves temperatures combining with floodlights from the word go. Having not been in a big stadium for around a decade I was initially overwhelmed by the size of the place and took a brief dizzy spell. Before long however I got used to it and I actually seemed very close to the action when it kicked off. The game itself was a belter. In quality terms it was well short of the English game but streets ahead of our local scene and it was interesting to see how inconspicuous the referee was. Challenges that might have brought a red card in England were ignored and the game flowed better for it. Approaching the game as a neutral I soon got caught up in cheering on Hibernian and they didn't disappoint, scoring a couple of excellent goals and a penalty and even conceding a late one to set up a grandstand finish. Top stuff, the Hibees were worth their 3-2 win and Ivan Sproule looked a hell of a player, one eye or not. Magic!

The scorching heat continued on Thursday as I spent the day wandering around the city. I've been to Edinburgh plenty of times before but have never seen a lot of the sights and so I rectified that by taking in the Parliament, the castle, a bunch of old churches and graveyards and the punishing Calton Hill, where I found myself feeling somewhat overcome by heat stroke. By that stage the early darkness was arriving again, combining once more with scorching temperatures, a combination that seemed almost otherworldly. But it was good stuff either way and I thoroughly enjoyed my time catching up with this fine old city again. The journey home was hellish to say the least, involving as it did four hour waits, pissed-up loyalists and standing in the lashing rain for half an hour waiting on a bus but who cares about all that as everything else was just dandy. Good show.
keresaspa: (Starry Plough)
So it seems some Labour Party no-mark going by the name of Ian Davidson has sought to get his fifteen minutes of fame by denouncing the Scottish National Party as neo-fascists. Now I'm on record as supporting independence for Scotland but I am also on record as not necessarily being a fan of Alex Salmond and his decidedly non-radical mob. However this has to be one of the sleaziest outbursts I have ever heard as, not only is the term neo-fascist of debatable value, but Davidson's proclamation has zero basis in fact.

I have never seen the SNP referencing Maurice Bardèche or Oswald Mosely in seeking to venerate the corporatism of the Republic of Salo and set up an elite-led pan-European all-white superpower. I'm yet to encounter the references to the mysticism of Julius Evola and glorification of the European spirit of the Waffen-SS in SNP rhetoric. Certainly the occasions where the SNP have sought to develop an economic third way utilising the thoughts of the Strasser brothers or the National Bolshevik tendency are lost on me, and indeed Tony Blair is the only one I can recall ever seeking economic third ways (although admittedly Blair was misusing the term as his "third way" would more accurately have been term "way one and a quarter" as it was just capitalism with the merest hint of social democracy). Certainly the widely accepted notion of Roger Griffin that fascism should be seen as palingenetic ultranationalism bears little resemblance to the SNP vision of an independent, pluralist, democratic Scotland that would have little difference to the current model other than being fully governed from Edinburgh rather than partially and dependent on the say-so of London. Mind you I rather doubt that the good Mr. Davidson has even heard of the notion of palingenetic ultranationalism, much less recognises it as a basis of fascism. Perhaps Mr. Davidson is also unaware that only one typology of a related concept, in this case Cas Mudde's Populist Radical Right (which the author makes clear is distinct from fascism), tests the Scottish National Party against its inclusion criteria. Mudde argues that not only do the SNP not fit his base criterion of nativism they should not even be considered nationalist as they make no reference to any notion of a Scottish ethnic identity and are in effect separatists basing their demands on a historical-geographical unit rather than group identity. Now if Davidson is seriously suggesting that all separatists who are otherwise liberal, conservative, socialist or Marxist should all be considered neo-fascist then I suggest he needs to go back and study the fundamentals of political ideology. There again perhaps I am asking too much to expect a politician to have any grasp of politics.

Of course like most politicians using the term Davidson has no concept whatsoever of what fascism actually means and is simply using it as a stick to beat opponents with. He's a hard-line unionist so therefore he doesn't like the idea of an independent Scotland and anything he doesn't like must be fascism. But this has to be one of the most ridiculous statements I have ever heard and this time-serving moron needs to be disciplined quick sharp. Ed Milliband took a right hammering in Scotland at the last election and made precious little inroads into the support for a malevolent Conservative Party elsewhere. If he thinks the way to make his party electable is to attack the unemployed during the worst recession since the bottom fell out of the pyramid-building industry and to allow faceless apparatchiks to trot out the f-word then maybe it was time his leadership was reconsidered. Neo-fascist my eye!
keresaspa: (Ivy the Terrible)
So far the elections have delivered one big surprise - there are wicked selfish bastards in the United Kingdom who think that the malevolent David Cameron has done a good job with his constant crapping on the poor. What else can explain the fact that his evil party have gained control of three councils and 61 councillors as the results stand and two seats in Wales? How "I'm alright, Jack" can some people get?! And shame on Wales for letting itself be lead around by the nose as the afterthought in the "England and ..." conjunction by turning away from Plaid Cymru. At least the Scots got it right by voting SNP. As oily a sod as Alex Salmond is, and I personally wouldn't trust the great lump as far as I could throw him, England's retreat into conservatism and the fact that it is never mirrored in Scotland makes the union about as attractive a proposition as Kim Woodburn in a bikini for a country that suffered so much under Thatcher.

For the Liberal Democrats the inevitable kicking has ensued, just as it should have. Everybody knows what the Conservative Party are about and so if you vote for them and get monetarism you have no right to complain. But the Liberal Democrats were elected on a platform avowedly to the left of Labour and are now spending their days propping up the most cuts-happy government in memory. Back to the drawing board for them, starting with the order of the boot for Clagknot, Calamity Cable (a man who has made Frank Dobson seem efficient) and anybody else associated with the ConDem junta, a withdrawal from the coalition and a period on the sidelines wringing your hands in the hope that some day somebody might forgive your wicked collaboration. Back to the drawing board too for Ed Miliband - true, Labour has made gains but hardly at an earth-shattering rate and if you can't duff up a government as wholly rotten as the current squad of bastards then something has gone seriously wrong.

Good also to see that the BNP has taken a right hiding and it might well be that the writing is on the wall for that lot. In typical extreme right fashion they have been stuck in internal bickering mode for the last few years and it is really starting to take its toll on them. Back in 1980 the British Democratic Party, the New National Front and the Constitutional Movement all left the National Front and set in place the collapse of that devilish mob as some went off on a Julius Evola-Codreanu path and others went off on a Jean-Marie Le Pen kick, meaning that by 1986 there were two National Fronts and by the mid 1990s three other groups in the Third Way, International Third Position and National Democrats had emerged, leaving the NF as an afterthought with a couple of hundred members. I'm not suggesting that the exact same thing is about to happen to the BNP but they look very short on ideas, especially now that the English Defence League has hoovered up most of the mouthbreathers, and I wouldn't be surprised to see the significant divisions that already exist ripping them apart. Fingers crossed anyway.

And as to my neck of the woods...well, who knows? Apparently the Electoral Commission here only hires blind people with dyscalculia before tying their hands behind their backs and yelling random numbers at them at irregular intervals during the count. Well, what else could explain why every election we are at least a day behind everywhere else when it comes to announcing results even though we have the smallest population of the four bits that make up the Disunited Queendom? Mind you, there were so few candidates in some seats that they would be as well just dealing the seats out to the big parties without even bothering to count votes. And I had better shut up now as I don't want to give the gruesome twosome any ideas.
keresaspa: (Default)
Shame on Finland falling for the cheap, populist, hate-filled rhetoric of the True Finns. As much as I detest the old school extreme right at least you know where you are with them. The sort of balls-out, supposedly grass roots, Israel-loving nationalist crap espoused by the likes of these snotbags, Geert Wilders or the Tea Party tossers really gets my goat as it is so two-faced pretending on the one hand to be respectable but throwing about the same old anti-everything rhetoric and presenting it as "common sense". I'm certainly not a big fan of the European Union but to fall back on the same old right-wing nationalist arguments to oppose it is tired to say the least. Another victory for the no-goodniks and I'm sure Tony Halme is enjoying a smile to himself in Hell.

Elsewhere it seems that the goons looking to bugger up Scottish football even further by cutting the SPL to ten teams again apparently want to add a British League Cup to the mix. A winning formula there, I don't think. Fair enough certain inhabitants of Old Trafford and Goodison Park might get a kick out of playing Celtic and Stamford Bridge would no doubt be full to capacity if Rangers were in town but on a rainy October night Wigan Athletic v St Johnstone or St Mirren v Wolves would probably struggle to get four figures much less a packed house. Besides whilst the Old Firm, with their delusions of playing in England, might get to feel like big boys I really can't see what English teams would get from playing against the other jobbing sides many of whom would struggle in the third division. Interesting to note, of course, that in the three one-off attempts at this already contested (the British League Cup, the Empire Exhibition Trophy and the Coronation Cup) Celtic triumphed every time. It is equally interesting to note that in the last ever instalment of the Anglo-Scottish Cup Rangers suffered a 3-0 hammering at that hotbed of football excellence Saltergate. Yup, Old Firm allegiances die hard. And above all just what is the problem with the current 12 members of the SPL plus Dunfermline Athletic, Raith Rovers, Falkirk, Dundee, Partick Thistle and Livingston playing each other twice a season with two or three promoted and relegated annually? Too sensible, perhaps?

And finally a video for you all to enjoy. I caught it recently on some show presented by that annoying David Walliams character in which he took the opportunity to sneer at well-meaning people who happened to use different terminology in the past. How admirable of a 39 year old man to find it amusing that children have learning difficulties and that people want to help them. He apparently thought it funny but for me only one conclusion could be drawn - wasn't Barbra Streisand a fine piece of womanhood in her day? Good Lord, she's practically smouldering there. Yes, I am a sick man.
keresaspa: (Default)
In Theatre of Blood Vincent Price puts his critics to the sword, most memorably stuffing poodle pies down the cakehole of a camper than a row of tents Robert Morley. Unfortunately for Fabio Capello he does not have Diana Rigg in an unflattering moustache taking his part and so he must face the criticism coming his way without the prospect of drowning anyone in a butt of wine. There was a hand ball of course to diminish responsibility but in truth there can be few excuses for not beating a nation of under 700,000 people. A good start to qualifying papered over the cracks of the abject summer displays but the stark truth has returned - England are not actually very good. That a touch of hello folks and what about the workers could so spectacularly finish off Wayne Rooney seems amazing but that must be the case as he was ineffective as he has been recently. As for his strike partner and fellow Ugandan practitioner Peter Crouch, well he is Peter Crouch and was summed up best by Uncle Dave Macon when he stated that "a doggone mule is a mule until he die". When players of this calibre start games there will always need to be limitations on expectation, although what expectations you can have when said beanpole is removed and replaced by a 33 year old debutante in goal-shy Kevin Davies is anybody's guess. Meanwhile the much vaunted Gareth Barry looked all at sea again with talk of him as the bronzed and fit Adonis ready to carry the hopes of the three lions looking very wide of the mark. I have no doubt that England will qualify and once they do I have no doubt that the nationalistic press will install them as favourites due to the fact that they appear on Match of the Day every week and therefore are obviously gods on earth. However there is nothing about this team that suggests they will be anything other than also-rans come 2012.

Which in fairness is a damn sight more than the Queen's Own Occupied Territory will be. Nigel Worthington, who couldn't be more boring even if he spontaneously transmuted into a power drill, might have strutted like the proverbial peacock (although the first three letters of that word are admittedly redundant) after his charges took a point off Italy but to only manage a draw against the Faroe Islands is laughable. OK, to be fair Northern Ireland are a much smaller team than England and they were never very likely to qualify anyway but it is results like this which make me glad I have absolutely no feelings of nationalism regarding this little strip of chartered land retained at Her Majesty's Displeasure. I am also quite glad to see Scotland lose which rather surprises me a bit. Normally I wish them well but there is something about Avril Levein that really gets on my tit end. I'm not sure whether it is his horrendously negative Norwegian style tactics, his slavish devotion to anybody who plays at Ibrox, his tainting with the untrustworthiness inherent in all Jambos or even his rotten mouth but he really does annoy me and his failure gives me pleasure. I'm a spiteful little man, I know. And at the risk of offending my occasional Turkish readers it was also nice to see a bit of a shock with Azerbaijan recording a rare win. Less of a shock to see the farce in Genoa as it seems Serbia churns out boneheads at a rate comparable to that at which Eton College churns out self-satisfied bastards. But let's end on a high with a big well done to Armenia whose 4-0 win over the titans of Andorra set a new record for their highest ever winning score. Well they were due a bit of luck given that the last time we heard from them was after the earthquake and that terrible version of "Smoke on the Water".
keresaspa: (Karl Liebknecht)
Well that was interesting if nothing else (to the point where I have decided to break from my pre-determined structure and blog this game on its own). Germany-England began, as expected, with two of the worst national anthems around droning out and a bunch of tone-deaf millionaires wailing them. The game itself started pretty poorly with neither side really making many chances and Rooney stuck in sulk mode, which has been his default for this World Cup. I missed Germany's opening goal as I had to leave the room (interesting euphemism there) but replays revealed it to be a route one effort in which Matthew Upson, who only narrowly avoided relegation this season, was badly at fault for what was a routine Klose finish. A poor start which inevitably caused Fabio Capello to do that clapping whilst shouting gesture that seems to be his only reaction to anything. "Fettuccine alfredo for dinner, love" - clap/shout. "It's a girl, Mr. Capello" - clap/shout. "You owe us £10 million in unpaid taxes" - clap/shout. "The meteor is on a collision course with earth and will strike in seven minutes, killing us all" - clap/shout. Klose should have made it two soon afterwards but before long Podolski did with a peach of a goal, although once again Upson was at fault as the defence as a whole went to sleep. Seeking to make amends Upson bundled one back in after an error by Neuer, although to be fair Lampard, Gerrard and Barry had been putting in some good work in the build-up. Lampard's disallowed 'goal' - which obviously should have stood - was a stroke of ill luck but in a way it could have been a blessing in disguise as England could have used the sense of injustice to mount a strong, indignant comeback in the second half. Didn't happen, though. Whilst England paid lip-service to attacking, the ball was largely kept in midfield by Germany who were happy to hit on the counter, as they did so well for their third. James was at fault for this goal but to be fair to him there were five defensive players hanging around Muller who just watched him score. For a man nominally employed as a holding midfielder Gareth Barry is a very poor tackler, as was demonstrated starkly when Germany got their fourth and he missed a crucial tackle. Again though it would be wrong to blame one man as the defence was lying wide open when this went in. When the immediate response was to bring on goal-free Emile Heskey rather than Peter Crouch, a man who has scored plenty at this level despite looking like a secretary bird, it was clear that this shower had thrown the towel in. In the end the Germans deserved their win and now look possible favourites to take the title.

In a way this was the perfect way for England to go out as it gives them an excuse not to look at the deeper lying reasons for their failure. The great and the good (as well as Alan Mullery and Ian Wright) will no doubt say that if Lamapard's strike had been allowed (which, as I've already stated, it definitely should have been) then the Three Lions would obviously have won as a team with the attacking talents of Germany could never have come back against a Keystone Cops defence like that of England. Nonsense on stilts. If England could not get motivated to right a wrong like that then nothing will pick them up. There has been a lot wrong with this campaign and much of it begins with Fabio Capello, a man who looks ill-suited to international management. The problem of having three not very good goalkeepers was not one he could have solved but the way he handled them could have been a lot better. He could easily have picked one from the start and stuck with him, instead of keeping them in the dark and turning them all into nervous wrecks. In defence he made a bunch of mistakes too, notably picking Ledley King despite the fact that, by his own admission, he can't even have a kick-about in his back garden due to his injuries and by constantly treating Terry like a punch-bag despite the fact that he was head and shoulders the best defender in the squad. In midfield the Lampard-Gerrard conundrum was still left unsolved as Capello followed the pattern of his predecessors and hid under a bunch of coats hoping that somehow it would work itself out. Milner also looked very nervous at times whilst, as already stated, Barry can't tackle and so needs to be either deployed in a different manner or left out. Up front was where the main problems seemed to be however. Heskey is a joke that really is not funny any more. OK his pass set up a goal for Gerrard against the USA but in the same game he missed an easy chance and, whilst he chose to blame the ball, the more realistic answer is that he missed because it is what he does as he is a rotten goal scorer. As much as I dislike Rio Ferdinand I doubt he would have made the errors Upson did yet his absence was the price of having the "skills" of Heskey onboard. Meanwhile David Beckham sat around in a waistcoat providing an unwanted distraction and adding about as much as Gary McAllister did to Scotland's doomed Euro 96 campaign. However the main problem was clearly Rooney who was either injured, just not interested or just not as good as the hyperbole merchants who commentate on the Premier League like to make out. Whatever the truth he certainly didn't deserve an automatic spot in the team and it was cowardly management by Capello to keep playing him rather than leaving him out. Perhaps, just like under the much-maligned Sven-Göran Eriksson, the players have too much power and it is simply a case of once you get in the team you stay there. Certainly nothing else can explain why the sulky little meff got to play every game despite having zero impact. So any excuses about the disallowed goal (a mistake, for the third time) need to be put to bed as you don't concede four goals because of one wrong decision and it had nothing to do with England struggling to get out of a group that, with the talent at their disposal, they should have won at a canter. Whatever the future holds for the England team it seems clear to me that the Fabio Capello pension plan should end now as this campaign has been an unmitigated failure. Of course it will only get worse if they make the knee-jerk reaction of replacing him with Stuart Pearce but that is for another day.

And I reckon that is about as unbiased an assessment of an England team as you will ever get from me. Put it this way, you didn't want to hear me when the third goal went in ;)

and stuff

Nov. 12th, 2009 07:21 pm
keresaspa: (Blazing Saddles)
So it's time for a by-election again apparently, as somebody looks to replace that repulsive Martin person for a couple of months. I'm not personally sure that it is worth all the expense given that this current mob will be out in the not too distant future but I suppose it is another opportunity for them to take a bit of kicking. Or not seeing as the electorate in that constituency were moronic enough to vote the Speaker in last time despite a perfectly reasonable bunch of other candidates being on offer. For my part I'll never understand people who bother to vote for the Speaker when they know rightly that they only exist because of the silly little conventions in Westminster. I suppose they're the same sort of people who mouthed off about banning smoking in bars despite not having set foot in one in their lives. You know - morons! Voting is pointless enough as it is without voting for a candidate whose sole purpose is to never express an opinion and instead to act as a glorified Jo Frost to a bunch of overgrown toddlers.

But what of the candidates on offer? No surprise to see the standard issue thug running for the BNP. Let's hope that Scotland continues its good record and hands him the usual derisory vote that his mob are used to getting up there. Disappointing meanwhile to see the SSP and Solidarity both standing, as well as a Socialist Labour candidate. Like the left wing vote will not be thin enough to start with it then has to be broken up even more due to personality clashes. Shame. The TILT chap appears to be trumpeting his left-wing credentials too, although judging by that website he is not so much on the left as round the left bend.

I also notice that this by-election is bringing about the previously threatened outbreak of celebrities against people taking money for nothing that I previously ranted about. Mind you, my earlier assault on Esther Rantzen notwithstanding, I didn't realise that the campaign would run out of people so quickly and be forced to go for the real z-list rather than the ultra-famous like the great Esther. We might have expected at least a Tony Roper or a Paul Coia but some Big Brother reject?! I had assumed that the whole point of the initiative was that the slebs were already super-rich and so would not be corrupted by the offer of fringe benefits but, unless he has a secret billion pound business empire that he failed to mention whilst trading his dignity in return for a shot at 100 grand (or whatever the prize money is), I rather suspect that Mr. Hughes would canvass voters with the catchphrase "vote for me...give us your odds, then". And whilst we're at it that baggage handler has had his fifteen minutes of fame and the whole Jury Team business has already ran its course. Ideology and values might be out of fashion in this age of showbiz politics but I don’t think even this society is po-mo enough to vote for a party that has a complete lack of policies as its only policy.

Meanwhile, one guy who certainly doesn't deserve any votes is the ridiculously named wannabe Action Man Mev Brown. According to Mev’s brilliant interpretation the Troubles was just about the Provisional IRA. So all those people killed by the loyalist paramilitaries, the RUC and the British Army were something completely different, I suppose. Nothing more appealing than a Tory Scotsman pontificating about Northern Ireland, is there? I don't know about you, but I rather get the feeling that his two favourite haunts are Murrayfield and his local Loyal Orange Lodge. Still, there is some sanity left as he is yet to attract a single comment on his daft little election blog. I bet he calls his bicycle Desert Storm!

Well that's all I can say about it. Realistically an SNP win will be a decent result, even if the man in question only ends up getting a couple of months of paid mortgage arrears and free plugs. Nice work if you can get it, I suppose.
keresaspa: (Maurice Bishop)
I had intended to avoid mentioning this whole Lockerbie thing. The rows about terrorism and trade deals with Colonel Qaddafi and all the rest have gotten very tedious very quickly. However the outpouring of anger and grief over the release of a dying man convicted in the first place on evidence described by a relative of one of the victims as very shaky has gone too far for me to continue to hold my tongue (or should that be hold my keyboard), as has the taking of the moral high ground once again by the murderers of Maurice Bishop, Salvador Allende, Martín Almada, Zelmar Michelini and countless others in the American government.

The whole doo-dah seems to stem from two main problems i.e. the release was pandering to the grand hoodoo of terrorism and the reaction in Libya was bad and wicked and evil and not nice. Tied in seems to be a whole subtext about the entire incident proving that Scotland is a nasty place that should have its balls removed ASAP before it makes any other decisions that offend the new messiah, the Blessed Barack Obama (peace be upon him). So let me try to take each in turn.

The pandering to terrorists arguments is so hackneyed now that you suspect even the Daily Mail might think twice about using it (chance would be a fine thing). Still in a world made up of goodies and baddies where courts are always right, I suppose an on his last legs Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi does represent a massive threat to world security and his release is a huge victory for al-Qaeda, the Taliban, Fatah al-Islam, the Black September, the IPLO, GRAPO and Alan Rickman's character in Die Hard. In the real world however I think he is just some patsy on his way out who is no more a threat to this mythical world security than Buck Alec's toothless lion was to a herd of elephants. I can accept that some people who feel that the law is always right even when it is wrong will see this as an injustice but he is hardly the first person to be dubbed a terrorist to be released and he certainly won't be the last. Move on.

I'm not altogether sure what the fuss was about regarding the celebrations following his release either. There is an unwritten rule that when a citizen of one country is punished for a crime in another country then the punishing country's justice system is automatically derided as evil and wrong. Amongst those who buy into the nationalist mindset one's "own" are always innocent, be they Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi, imprisoned football hooligans in Eastern Europe, drug traffickers in Thailand, Louise Woodward or whoever. Whatever they may or not have done these people are presumed innocent by the chattering masses because they belong to the same group so getting annoyed at Libya for something that Britain has always done is ridiculous. Were the situation reversed it would be taken as gospel that our boy was 110% innocent and Johnny Foreigner had stitched our brave lad up and just in case you felt any differently Kelvin MacKenzie and Nick Ferrari would appear regularly to tell you that it is true because the lad in question loved his mum and a pint and come the time that he was freed the bunting and brass bands would be out in Castle Combe and the news would be littered with images of his crying family as proof of innocence. It is a fairly nonsensical reaction but it is a worldwide one and so there should be no surprise that it goes on in Libya the same as anywhere else.

The condemnation of the Scottish Executive in the wake of the whole debacle from the forces of reaction has also been out of hand. Whatever the merits of the decision, and there are plenty given how shaky the conviction was in the first place and the human compassion aspects, it is typical of the tawdriness of the man that Jack McConnell has waded in with a poor attempt to score a few points. Whenever I see McConnell I am always reminded of the slimeball Labour candidate in the Rab C. Nesbitt by-election episode, looking to feather his own nest and advance his worthless self by any means necessary. Union jack bedecked unionist knobheads like him might dread the notion of Scotland becoming independent but trying to undermine the inevitable over things like this just exposes how desperate the has-been really is.

Saint Barack's condemnation of the move is also a larf for a man who leads the very country that gave itself a free pass for its direction of a campaign of political assassinations in Operation Condor. A country that happily kept the likes of Stefano delle Chiaie and the Alianza Anticomunista Argentina in its employ is in no position to hand out condemnations over supporting terrorism. And yes I know it wasn't King Obama but it is still the system and the country that he is so proud to lead. Still, it's good to see that he's keeping his word on all that "change" crap by still banging the "leader of the free world" drum. Similarly the criticism from Robert Mueller is a joke as I think Scotland deserves respect for showing compassion rather than following the American lead of detaining people indefinitely at Guantanamo Bay. Plus US Military Intelligence are in a great position to talk to people about security and justice when they happily provided gainful employment for Otto Skorzeny and Klaus Barbie. The sheer bloody mindedness of these people is beyond frightening.

All in all another non-issue blown up into something important, as has been the hallmarks of this government since the days of fox hunting. The deed is done so let it lie and keeping somebody locked up will not reverse the Lockerbie bombings. For me Kenny MacAskill made the right decision and it is a credit to the SNP government that they are prepared to take the right decision even when it does upset the world police. Heck, with the SNP in charge an independent Scotland just might do all right for itself. And it's lucky really that nobody reads this stuff otherwise an arrest under the 2006 Terrorism Act for glorifying terrorism could be in the offing!

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