“It would be really, really nice is Hamilton’s verdict signalled a new stage of our political discourse – one which prioritised the issues facing Scotland, rather than its current and former first ministers, and where matters of sovereignty, social and economic justice, and protecting the vulnerable and the marginalised do not take a backseat to tortuous inquiries and the shenanigans they allow.”

Sean Bell: In the wake of Hamilton, Sturgeon’s critics must realise there is no cheat-code to victory


For all the fuss, the revelation itself is no smoking gun. Her account was undeniably marred by factual bloopers. The real questions are about their relevance in the grander scheme of things; and, most of all, about the intent lying behind inaccurate statements.

Source Direct: Leading and Misleading


“It would appear that Police Scotland are more frightened of belligerent football fans than nonviolent anti-racist protestors. That may be entirely rational – one does not need to be an expert in urban pacification to conclude that the latter can be kettled and bullied far more easily than the former. This does not make the double standard any less grating.”

Sean Bell: It is Police Scotland’s responsibility to answer to us, not vice versa


The immediate effect of Sturgeon’s appearance to reinforce the peculiar parasocial bond between the First Minister and her fanbase. “I stand with Nicola!” And that hashtag itself represents a strange quirk of contemporary political behaviour.

Source Direct: Bonding with Nicola



It’s long past panto season, but Scottish politics didn’t get that memo. With each day the inquiry into the Government mishandling of the Salmond affair gets more slapstick, more ribald and more grotesque.

Source Direct: He’s Behind You!



The investigation into the Scottish Government’s handling of the Salmond affair has consumed column inches and online discussions. But that’s all happening in bubbles of political trainspotters. What about public sentiment? Does anyone care?

Source Direct: A House Divided


The prospects for farce were highlighted by Peter Murrell’s evidence yesterday: when Labour MSP Jackie Baillie implied he was being coached off camera, Murrell answered that his eye was distracted by a rogue magpie. You could almost see Malcolm Tucker off camera, stamping his foot with rage.

Source Direct: Two Tribes Go to War