Hating The Gaelic

Originally posted on AN SIONNACH FIONN:
Following a brief period of relative quiet the haters of Scottish Gaelic are back in full-swing, attacking new education legislation in Scotland which includes provisions to allow Gaelic-speaking parents to request Gaelic-medium schooling for…

It’s Time to Get Above Ourselves

The days of being passive subjects receiving wisdom and propaganda from an elite space on high are gone. So help us become a point of focus for creative thinking and a space for the democratic insurgency we’re witnessing and fully participating in.

Independence or Barbarism

By Mike Small John Swinney isn’t Che Guevara. Angus Robertson isn’t Slavoj Žižek. Owen Paterson, the famously climate-denialist Environment Minister may be disappointed to hear that after his bizarre rant in the Independent ‘SNP are Marxists’ – but it is the… Read More ›

The Frightful Sphere

By Peter Arnott Pascal was the first serious religious thinker to attempt to cope with the new “scientific” View of the Universe that Galileo and Newton had just come up with.  Suddenly the place where he had always lived turned… Read More ›

The Only Way is Down

Some notes on the election result from Dougald Hine. So, good morning. I’m afraid it’s true: that nightmare you had, it wasn’t a dream. Let yourself feel the shock, the rawness of disappointment sharpened by sleep deprivation. If you ached… Read More ›


By Mike Small This is a brilliant disaster. Congratulations to all of the fine candidates who swept away a derelict and bankrupt force in Scotland, whether that be the useless Charles Kennedy, the hapless Douglas Alexander or the derisory Ian… Read More ›

The Magic Numbers

By Mike Small 323. That’s the magic number required to run a government. The palpable hysteria has turned into raw panic as the Tory party and their outriders in the ‘non dom or tax exile-owned Mail, Express, Telegraph and Murdoch… Read More ›

From Scotland with Love *

By Mike Small What a weird empty election campaign characterised by selfies, twitter-spats and endless debate about the outcome itself. Like the political equivalent of the mobile phone we’ve ignored the here and now for the somewhere else. Convergence, daily… Read More ›

The History Trap

By Peter Arnott “They’re going with their heart. It’s about who they want to be a voice for Scotland.” How Scotland Lost its Mind. How has it come to this? How can it possibly be that Scotland’s voters are so… Read More ›

Guilty Until Innocent

By Mike Small How far ‘the country’ has moved to the right is sampled only in glimpses. Yesterday the Independent, home to Mark Steel, and today Frankie Boyle and long thought of as bastion of Liberal England, published an extraordinary… Read More ›

A Bunch Of Kunst

From Bonnie Prince Bob & Sir Norrie of Harman here’s ‘A Bunch of Kunst’ – the follow up film to their box-office smash ‘Jim Murphy, The Saviour of the Union’  Enjoy!

No Mean City

By  Mike Small Several things can be true at the same time. The following statements are all true: 1. The incident in Glasgow today was disgraceful. 2. It has nothing to do with SNP and nothing to do with ‘nationalism’…. Read More ›

More Nonsense from the BBC

By Jim and Margaret Cuthbert Bella readers may recall, (Bella Caledonia, 8th October), that, soon after the Referendum, we complained to the BBC about Robert Peston’s statement that England subsidises Scotland: a statement that conveniently missed out the fact that… Read More ›

Sweden Leads on Energy Action

Sweden just scored a victory for nuclear decommissioning – without lifting a finger. Dominic Hinde investigates. It was a decision that took the government that controlled them by surprise, but on Tuesday Sweden’s publicly owned energy giant Vattenfall made a… Read More ›

A Sense of Belonging

  By Mike Small This morning Scotland is a pariah state, disenfranchised, with a proscribed party on the verge of a landslide victory. You think the union survives that? Ed Miliband last night effectively cut Jim Murphy loose by declaring… Read More ›

Thieves and Beggars

By Mike Cullen A scapegoat is a very handy thing. Hitler understood that. It gives you someone to blame, for everything, a direction for your pointy finger and probably even somewhere to park your bike. So far, in this increasingly… Read More ›

Close to the Wire

By Mike Small Last night someone posted on twitter: “You think you are watching the breakdown but you are watching the fallout from what was already broken.”  They were talking about Baltimore but could equally have been talking about the… Read More ›

Fracking Fail in Falkirk

By Liz Thomson @LizThomson88 The second Ineos public meeting intended to sell fracking to the central belt ended in defeat for Directors Gary Haywood and Tom Pickering. Questions from the audience on the potential dangers to public health exposed embarrassing… Read More ›

Get a SHIFT On

By Cal McGregor Poetry has long had a special place in Scottish culture. Anywhere that can hold Tom Leonard, Kathleen Jamie and Ivor Cutler in one hand and Don Paterson, Jenni Fagan and Roddy Lumsden in the other, can’t doing… Read More ›

Major Mayhem

By Mike Small Lord John Major today briefly displaced Gordon Brown’s position as the ‘Man to Step Out of the Shadows and Save the Union’ with a bizarre contribution to the constitutional debate. Electing people would be “a recipe for… Read More ›

Party Fears Two

By Mike Small So to the SNP Manifesto launch, at the packed-out climbing centre at Ratho. Cue appropriate metaphors of cliffhangers, and epic struggles to the mountaintop. It was an extraordinary event with the UK media descending and mingling with… Read More ›