Who's up for creating a new independence party?

I'm mostly not joking.

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I haven't listened to Nicola Sturgeon's speech (I was in a meeting). Judging from online reaction it was even worse than I feared.

Ms Sturgeon is a very competent manager, but she is not a leader. Nothing I can do about it, as I'm not even an SNP member.

The year 2020 isn't getting any better.

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Anyone know what the big "independence" announcement is going to be at 09:30 to-morrow, in Edinburgh? Something is happening at the Dynamic Earth venue.

I'm trying not to get my hopes up... they have been dashed before.

To-day the EU Parliament has ratified the UK Withdrawal Agreement. That makes the UK's exit from the EU official from both sides.

I think this song is appropriate under the circumstances (although maybe not all the lyrics):


"The people of Scotland are sovereign..."

There is some more to that quote from the Scottish Greens, but that first part says it all.

Christine Keeler was at the centre of the 1960s Profumo affair. John Profumo was Secretary of State for War. He initially denied he had a sexual affair with Keeler, but later admitted it. Following this he resigned from the government, and Parliament. In addition, there were allegations that Keeler simultaneously had an affair with a Soviet naval attaché.

The resulting scandal nearly brought down the government, and probably led to the Tories losing the 1964 General Election.

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Summary of Boris Johnson's position on the US - Iran situation:

Bombing cultural sites - naughty, don't do it.
Illegal killings - just dandy, go ahead.

I agree with Iain Macwhirter.

"Scots did not vote to leave the European Union. They did not vote to lose their EU citizenship, with all the protections that brings. They did not vote to cut EU immigration; did not vote to accept trade deals with the United States; did not agree to the diminution of environmental standards; and did not vote to be subjected to untrammelled Tory rule from Westminster.

That’s really all the SNP need to say. Voters will do the rest."

It is being reported that the Iraqi PM said that General Soleimani' was their guest, and the US strike was illegal. Calls also being made for the US embassy in Baghdad to be closed & troops to be removed from the country

Trump has managed to unite Iraq and Iran. Quite amazing.

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Footage of General Qassem Soleimani's funeral in Iran, earlier to-day.

To say he was popular would be an understatement.

From the "you could have knocked me over with a feather" department:

"Defense-sector stocks rose Friday on Wall Street after the United States killed Iran’s top military official and braced for escalated conflict in the region."


UK PM Margaret Thatcher won her most decisive General Election victory in 1983, credited in a great part to the successful outcome of the Falklands War.

Other world leaders will know that a "good" war helps win elections.

I'm going to stick my neck out, and make my first politics prediction of 2020:

Keir Starmer will win the Labour leadership election.

I suspect Starmer will win in a run-off against Rebecca Long-Bailey.

I've felt for some time that Starmer had positioned himself well for a leadership bid:

There is also the nice historical connection that Starmer is named after the Labour Party founder Keir Hardie.

One of the lesser considered impacts of is on musicians performing in the EU. A no-deal Brexit will make it much more difficult & expensive for musicians to tour continental Europe. & bands (particularly), often rely on the income from tours to keep going.

If you are from the UK please consider following some of the suggestions in this article by the Musicians' Union:

I am completely non-religous, but I do have a lot of sympathy for people who try to persuade others of their ideas. I recognise a little of myself, doing something similar in a political sphere.

I don't agree with Jehovah's Witnesses (or other religous evangelists), but I am always polite, and will give them some of my time, if it is possible.

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Arise, Sir Universal Credit.

For services to violating human rights obligations (oh, and running Boris Johnson's leadership campaign).

The European Union leaders have agreed that Northern Ireland would automatically rejoin the EU in the event of a united Ireland.

The unanimous decision was agreed within one minute at a special EU summit which was called to agree future negotiations on Brexit.


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