An independent Scottish foreign policy

‘Over time, in contrast to the UK where the twin foundations of foreign policy have recently been shaken (its ability to influence policy formulation in Washington and as a leading shaper of EU policy in Brussels)…Scotland’s position in both the EU and NATO would prove a valuable anchor for stability and influence in a complex world.’

FOI and the SG’s dubious claims to openness

‘We believe there are now grounds for a review of the Scottish government’s treatment of and policies for dealing with freedom of information requests, and would urge the Scottish government to address these concerns by immediately acting within the spirit and letter of Scotland’s freedom of information legislation’.

Seeding success: a new Paisley pattern

“In 21st century Scotland, resources of renewal are found elsewhere. Today we’re here to learn how communities are transforming town centres – with the right amount of support from public bodies and private enterprise.” Paisley aims to be City of Culture – and more

Police Scotland changes course

“Policing 2026 is not an officer reduction exercise, nor is at a ‘time-bomb’. Clearly Scottish policing is facing an eye-watering deficit: around £200 million by 2020/21 at the latest estimate. Still, putting it dryly, there are probably less painful ways to cut costs than devising and negotiating a ten-year national policing strategy.” A welcome shift to forward-looking, evidence-based policing strategy.

GERS and fake news, inadequate facts…

“All told, we need much more interest shown by the public on demanding detail about how the government spends our money, and then, most likely, demanding change.” Still true now – a look back at this August 29016 warts-and-all analysis to remind us of the fundamentals.

Nationalist ultras defy people’s sovereign will

“Far from denying Scots their right to decide their own destiny, Theresa May is seeing that the sovereign will of the Scottish people is upheld in defiance of the attempt by Nicola Sturgeon to thwart it.” A Conservative Leave voter takes issue with the FM.

GERS then and now

“It has never been claimed that GERS shows exactly what the public finances of an independent Scotland would look like.  We’ve only ever said this report, produced by the Scottish Government, shows where we are now – so you tell us what changes to improve that position.”