At the end of this week, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will outline plans for Scotland’s three-tier system for restrictions on covid-19. Then when MSPs return to the Scottish Parliament at the start of next week, the proposals will be scrutinised, debated and voted on. It’s the first time in quite awhile that there will be […]

Should the response to covid-19 be democratised?


Andrew Wilson, former SNP MP and head of corporate lobbying firm Charlotte Street Partners, has outlined his “roadmap for independence” in an interview in The Herald on Sunday. He envisages that Scotland could be independent by 2026, and would continue using pound sterling informally thereafter, until such time (perhaps five to ten years) “that it’s no […]

A Scottish currency following independence wouldn’t be “risky”


The latest polling on independence is some good news in tough times for Yes supporters. 58 per cent in favour of independence is reaching into new territory of independence support, even if it is just one poll. As polling expert professor John Curtice points out, this is “the ninth poll in a row since June to […]

Yes on 58%: What’s behind the poll lead?


With over 500 hospitalisations, and a seven-day average of confirmed cases over 1,000, Scotland’s spread of covid-19 certainly looks “out of control”.  First Minister Nicola Sturgeon denied that was the case yesterday, as she has to do, but the estimated ‘R’ number has been over one for about two months now, and the places that […]

Where is Scotland going on its covid-19 “journey”?


Around one million Scots were in poverty before the covid-19 crisis, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation’s new Poverty in Scotland 2020 report finds. That breaks down as 230,000 children, 640,000 working age adults, and 150,000 pensioners. These numbers have been rising over the past five years, especially child poverty, which is up to 24 per cent, almost one […]

Scotland is going backwards on poverty


The new need-to-know term of the Coronavirus era is: “circuit-breaker”. Scottish and UK Government ministers are openly talking about the possibility of a circuit-breaker lockdown to stem the spread of covid-19. The October holidays is rumoured to be the week when the Scottish Government will introduce the measure, though it would probably extend to the […]

Circuit-breaks and faulty currents


“We’re taking one step forward, five steps back,” Devi Sridhar, professor of Global Public Health at the University of Edinburgh and on the Scottish Government’s covid-19 advisory group, wrote yesterday, in summing up her exasperation about the covid-19 situation in the UK. She’s not wrong.  Lockdown was a big social sacrifice, one where the vulnerable suffered […]

‘One step forward, five steps back’


September 18th. The sixth anniversary of Indyref. I’m sure I am not alone among Source Direct subscribers in wondering if we will ever see as politically vibrant times again as the summer of 2014, when it felt like there wasn’t a person in Scotland who wasn’t actively engaged in shaping the country’s future. So much […]

Don’t lose sight of what made 2014 special


The Scottish Household Survey has just been published. This data provides the most detailed account of the demographic make-up of Scotland’s communities, and how it has changed over time. It also provides information on people’s views and beliefs on a number of issues, from climate change to religious belonging. Here, we will focus on what the […]

Scotland’s communities: divided by money


Some good news – kind of. The Royal Bank of Scotland’s latest Purchasing Managers’ Index report suggests things are starting to get built and sold again. A PMI rate above 50 suggests activity is expanding rather than contracting, and Scotland’s August PMI was 55.8, ahead of Northern Ireland and Wales but behind all English regions. […]

Scotland’s looming financial storm