Julia Jaurie, convenor of Edinburgh & Lothians P4Indy group, writes:
In our recent online meeting well known blogger, Peter A Bell, was kind enough to join us for a blether. Peter’s blog is called ‘I have Questions’ and he has a Facebook page White Rose Rising. Peter prefers to have an interactive Q&A with his audience, rather than talk, so he gave a brief introduction of the current political situation in Scotland, then off we went!
Within minutes we were inundated with points and questions of concern to our members:
should the S30 process be dumped? why give Westminster control over what should be our Referendum, well and truly made in Scotland.
will there even be a Scottish election next year? or might it be postponed?
is the SNP prepared for an election or a referendum?
how should we shape the referendum campaign? Peter thinks that we should reframe the issue so that we campaign against the Union rather than for Independence. In 2014 there was no scrutiny of the Union. Instead of us justifying Independence, let Unionists justify the the Union
Scottish Government needs to show no hesitation of weakness in negotiations with Westminster .
I really hope you enjoyed listening to our blether as much as we did taking part, and Peter will possibly come back and chat with us again in December, and then March 2021, as so much changes, and we all love a blether!
Finally, this is Peter’s Manifesto for Independence:
Renounce Section 30 process
Assert competence of Scottish Parliament in constitutional matters
Recall MPs to join with MSPs in a National Convention
Propose dissolution of Union subject to referendum
Call referendum entirely made and managed in Scotland
So what do you think? We’d love it if you leave a comment here on the post.
Cliff Purvis served in British Army for many years and saw active service in war zones all over the world, sometimes as part of UN Operations. He helps runs the Scottish Veteran for Independence 2.0 Group. And he speaks to Yes Groups all over Scotland.
Here he talks to our Edinburgh Group about what he knows of the support for independence amongst both veterans and those who are still member of the UK Forces.
He also answers questions on topics like:
what will a Scottish Defence Force look like?
do we even need a defence force? Iceland doesn’t have one.
has the Scottish Government ever asked him for his views?
do we need submarines?
how long would it take to rid Scotland of nuclear arms?
What about NATO?
do many current Armed Forces members support independence?
you hear stories about veterans ending up homeless and on the streets. How would he like to see veterans treats in an independent Scotland?
This week Edinburgh P4Indy invited Heather Anderson to talk to them about the controversial Bill currently going through Westminster – the UK Internal Market Bill. After the meeting, their our oldest campaigner, Olive, commented “I thoroughly enjoyed your talk, but it has frightened me to death!”. We all felt the same!
Heather was involved with Farmers for Yes and continues to have an active interest in rural economy regeneration, and meeting environmental targets. She is an organic farmer at Whitmuir Organic Farm near West Linton.
Her talks are witty & interesting. In this recording she is talking about what the Internal Market Bill really means for the future of agriculture. The effects it will have on our standards for everything we grow, sell, eat, use. Unless of course we become an Independent Nation.
Heather talks for about 30 mins and then takes question and points of view from the group.
View and download the slides which Heather used in her presentation. And listen here:
Dr Craig Dalzell, Head of Research at Commonweal, spoke to Edinburgh & Lothians Group about a set of recent policy papers with the umbrella title of “A Resilient Scotland”.
Because we need to emerge successfully from Covid. And we will have to deal with the fall out of Brexit. Scotland will need a great deal of resilience. And if – in the not too distant future – we are setting up as an independent country then our resilience will be put to good use!
Craig’s talk is 25 minutes long and followed by a lively Q&A session. You can listen to it here:
Greater Glasgow P4Indy Group invited Dave Thompson former MSP and now one of the founders of the Alliance for Independence (AFI) to contribute to a recent virtual meeting. Alan Logue, convenor of the group, stated at the outset that Pensioners for Indy are a non-party political organisation and do not endorse any party. The invitation to Dave is to better inform our members about the AFI initiative, its possible benefits and its possible risks.
Thirty nine people logged into the event. Dave spoke for about 20mins and there followed a lively Q&A sessions with points being made on both the pros and the cons of having List-Only Indy supporting parties.
The questions covered a lot of ground:
With SNP we know what we getting, they have a manifesto, same with the Greens. You say that AFI will not have a manifesto. That may be OK to get us to independence but those AFI MSPs will still be in Holyrood afterwards and we have no way of knowing what they would vote. Presumably individual MSPs will just vote according to their own views?
What are electoral Commission saying about accepting AFI
How likely is it that small parties are going to join in with you?
What if SNP don’t do as well as polls are saying, are we not in danger of making things worse rather than better?
If Greens don’t join AFI is it still viable?
How is it going to be funded? If people vote for you, won’t this be lauded by Unionists as SNP losing their power? And then be used it to make negotiations much more difficult?
Where SNP are likely to win a list seat, would you stand a candidate or step aside?
Coalitions are normal in a lot of countries, why on earth don’t you have a manifesto now that you can promote in phase two after independence?
D’Hondt system works well in producing a parliament which reflects how we vote. If this initiative ends up with a less proportional parliament is that really a good thing? Some people are concerned with the ethics of that. And wouldn’t a less proportional result it be used to argue against the legitimacy of the parliament?
There is no certainty that SNP will get the majority of the seats. As happened in 2016 when SNP got fewer votes. Why risk that again? Is it not a dangerous thing to do?
You can listen to the talk here: