‘What we have done is to allow the banks to get away with this scot-free and, in the crisis that was caused, we have made the poor pay for it and we have made them do that through cutting benefits, through austerity, through cutting government spending generally, but also through Quantitative Easing (QE)..’
To mark the tenth anniversary of the financial crisis, Sceptical Scot’s new series focuses on home-made follies; the extraordinary mistakes made by two once revered and typically prudent Scottish institutions: the Bank of Scotland and the Royal Bank of Scotland.
Gaps between rhetoric and delivery reveal urgent need for joined up thinking in Scotland’s plans for tackling climate change: ‘Scotland must cut emissions to zero by 2050. Increase the 2030 target to 77% and, crucially, commit to actions on integrated policies to make that happen.’
‘Over half (51%) of Londoners and 48% of Scots are more engaged in politics than people in the regions and Wales (35-48%)…Scotland’s current high level marks a 26% jump from 2011.’
‘I call them the cheerleaders of Putin – Farage, Le Pen, Wilders. They were doing only one thing. They take the money from the Kremlin. They take the intelligence of the Kremlin. Like Mr Arron Banks, for example, the friend of Mr Farage. ..’ (Guy Verhofstadt)
“Pro-independence commentators on the Left are angry that (the recent Sustainable Growth Commission report) appears to reduce an “independent” Scotland to a “vassal state” (h/t JRM) of the Bank of England, Westminster/Whitehall and Brussels.” Some comments from the right as well as the left on the Big Debate…
As a new case for Scottish independence emerges and #indyref2 looms, the latest Sceptical Scot podcast looks at the case for federalism as the best route to true community empowerment.
An artist’s eye-witness account of Hitler’s first concentration camp where academics, artists and political opponents of Nazism were imprisoned and tortured. An extract from Von Ripper’s Odyssey, Sian Mackay’s remarkable biography, gives a chilling insight into public acceptance of Hitler’s rise to power.
‘The name Immigration Removal Centre sounds harmless enough; just a pragmatic facility for holding people briefly on their way to another place. Don’t be fooled by the name. These places share the most punitive attributes of our prison service with none of the ameliorating facilities for improvement or rehabilitation.’
‘With hindsight there was a poignant contrast between the generous spirit in the hall and the fearful politics brewing in the real world outside’. Fay Young on positive community activism and a general election result that ushered in Theresa May’s ‘hostile environment’.