Nicola Sturgeon’s zombie government

There is an eerie pitch to Scottish politics these days. It began the year as a mumble, inaudible to all but those listening intently, but in the past few months the volume has swelled.  A cawing groan echoes through the forbidding corridors of St Andrew’s House and winds its way down Calton Hill to stalkContinue reading “Nicola Sturgeon’s zombie government”

RoboSturgeon in no mood for dancing

After Theresa May shimmied onto the conference stage in Birmingham to ABBA’s ‘Dancing Queen’, I had hoped Nicola Sturgeon would make more of her entrance to First Minister’s Questions. Maybe she and Derek Mackay would lead the rest of the Cabinet in a Dashing White Sergeant across the debating chamber. Great was my disappointment whenContinue reading “RoboSturgeon in no mood for dancing”

She’s the toast of the Tories but what does Ruth Davidson stand for?

I wasn’t around to see Titus welcomed back to Rome after the conquest of Jerusalem, Nelson hailed in Naples for sinking the French on the Nile, or the Lisbon Lions and their European Cup roared around Celtic Park in an open-top lorry but I got to witness Ruth Davidson’s reception at Conservative conference five monthsContinue reading “She’s the toast of the Tories but what does Ruth Davidson stand for?”

Nicola had the look of a cat who’d just sat on a porcupine

My granny used to tell us: ‘If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.’ My granny didn’t live to see the Scottish Parliament so I reckon her injunction is moot. The carnival of mediocrity cranked up again yesterday and sputtered along for 45 eyelid-anchoring minutes of First Minister’s Questions. WestminsterContinue reading “Nicola had the look of a cat who’d just sat on a porcupine”

Brussels has undermined the chances of a second referendum

The Japanese martial art of aikido hinges on two connected philosophies – first, that it is wiser to use your opponent’s strength against him than it is to attempt to subdue him with brute force and, second, that you should only use as much force as is necessary to defend yourself. Morihei Ueshiba, the foundingContinue reading “Brussels has undermined the chances of a second referendum”

Everyone’s Wrong But Nicola, a continuing series

Patrick Harvie was angry, or at least as angry as a Green can get. You could tell because he was asking about the environment for once, rather than his party’s primary priorities: intersectional letting practices and gender-neutral flight plans at Prestwick Airport. Anti-fracking campaigners had been branded ‘domestic extremists’ by Police Scotland. Harvie hissed likeContinue reading “Everyone’s Wrong But Nicola, a continuing series”

Why Ruth’s brave words are truly an act of patriotism

It’s the wink, I think, that makes her a star. That impish twitch of the eye that tells you this isn’t just any Conservative politician. This is Ruth Davidson. Yes, she is serious and can be sombre when called for but she is not precious. This is someone who watches trashy TV, has a senseContinue reading “Why Ruth’s brave words are truly an act of patriotism”

Roseanna fumed while Ruth cornered Nicola on schools

Roseanna Cunningham was set to blow. The Environment Secretary is the universal unit of measurement for how badly Ruth Davidson is duffing up Nicola Sturgeon at First Minister’s Questions. When the Tory leader starts to irk the FM, Republican Rose spins in her chair and gives her the shoulder. When Davidson taunts her opposite numberContinue reading “Roseanna fumed while Ruth cornered Nicola on schools”

When it comes to the economy, Nicola needs to stop daydreaming

Ever have one of those mornings when you just can’t get out of bed? The alarm is blaring, the kids’ packed lunches have still to be made, and you have that important meeting at work but this big marshmallow of a duvet is just too toasty. The snooze button is duly thwacked. You know it’sContinue reading “When it comes to the economy, Nicola needs to stop daydreaming”

Sturgeon unveils latest list of things she won’t get round to because #Westminster

Seventeen sentences. That’s how far Nicola Sturgeon got into her Programme for Government speech before the I-word cropped up: ‘The best future for Scotland lies in becoming an independent country.’ And here I thought the BBC was cracking down on repeats. Independence got no further, though. No date, no time, no demand for Indyref 2.Continue reading “Sturgeon unveils latest list of things she won’t get round to because #Westminster”