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A financial nativity tale

Herald. A telling conversation with ghost of Christmas present Iain MacWhirter Columnist Christmas Eve at St Andrew’s Square, in the centre of Edinburgh’s financial district. Wet snow falls on the scattering of tents housing the Occupy protesters. Jake Rice sweeps the slush out of the mess tent … and onto the £300 hand-made shoes of … Continue reading

The last throw of the dice? ECB gives bankers a happy Christmas..

  Turns out that Francois Baroin, the French Finance Minister, wasn’t far wrong last week.   The most hated man in the City of London said that Britain was in just as bad financial shape as eurozone countries like France, and that the rating agencies should be downgrading British debt.  We have higher inflation, lower … Continue reading

Douglas Alexander, Scottish nationalist?

    It’s extremely uncomfortable, especially at mealtimes.  All week my mouth has been dropping open inconveniently, bouncing off my chest, getting in my food, stifling coherent speech.   The reason:  the Shadow Foreign Secretary,  Douglas Alexander’s,  jaw dropping intervention in the independence debate.  In a speech in Glasgow the one time protege of Gordon … Continue reading

Salmond’s first own goal. Sectarianism

  From The Herald.    Like most people concerned about freedom of speech, I’ve been watching the progress of the Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications Bill, with mounting alarm. Outlawing the singing of songs at football matches seemed such a ridiculous proposition that initially I thought the Scottish government weren’t serious. That Alex … Continue reading

Who are the separatists now? Take Britain out of Europe and you can take Scotland out of the UK

David Cameron’s decision to take the UK out of Europe will take Scotland out of the UK.  The Prime Minister’s use of the veto against the EU treaty on budgetary reform looks like the game-changer that the SNP leader Alex Salmond has been waiting for.   Attachment to the Union in Scotland is likely to … Continue reading

£500 for independence?

From the Herald.   It sounds cheap at the price. 65% of Scots would opt for independence if they were £500 better off as a result, according to the latest poll from the Social Attitudes Survey. With all that cash the SNP has been accumulating recently through legacies and donations, Alex Salmond must be tempted just … Continue reading

Black November: it’s enough to drive you to drink.

     November was when the banking crisis of 2008 finally hit home. The governments of Europe have bankrupted themselves by taking on the debts of the banks.  The latest move by Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy is the final nail in the coffin of the eurzone economies.  It saddens be greatly to say that, … Continue reading

Everyone should have a decent pension.

   That’s what the strikers’ placards said, and they are right.  Everyone should have a decent pension.  The trouble is that the vast majority of workers in Britain don’t have one, and don’t have the remotest hope of having one.    The basic state pension in Britain is worth only 17% of earnings the lowest … Continue reading

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