Recent Posts - page 34

  • Black Forest to Green Wood?


    The Green party’s election victory in the German state of Baden-Württemberg is expected to have a major impact on industry and politics. What does it tell us? It’s a vote blow for Merkel but is it also a sign for… Read More ›

  • STV Lost Leaders Debate


    By Mike Small Last night’s STV Leaders debate was missing much: quality production, coherent format and Patrick Harvie, leader of the Scottish Greens a party – according to one poll today – ahead of the Liberal Democrats (who seem to… Read More ›

  • Another Kick at the Ball?

    As the arts is an area where the SNP record is highly contentious, it’s interesting to hear Alan Cummings view on the Holyrood election

  • Renewables – Not About the Environment


    What do we mean by renewable energy? If you ask the average person on the street, many of them probably associate “renewable” with “green” (or “environmentally-friendly”, as we used to call it). The thing is, we should be associating it with “infinite” and “inexhaustible”.

  • The Siege of Ardenlea Street – the Jaconelli outrage


    By Peter Curran What can I say that I haven’t already said or which has already been said better by others, e.g. Mike Dailly, the Jaconelli’s lawyer? Trying to cut through my impotent fury at what has been done to… Read More ›

  • Scotland v Brazil

    As you get some cachaça chilled for Sunday (live on STV 2pm kick off) here’s some classic footage from the vintage vaults. First up 1974 and it’s David Harvey on fine form, long-range firing from Lorimer, a very young King… Read More ›

  • The Gillie Mor: A Celebration of Hamish Henderson & the Folk Tradition in Caithness & Sutherland

    The GILLIE MOR Poster - Final

    By Kevin Williamson If I was back in my old stamping grounds of Caithness this weekend this is where I’d want to be: at the celebration of Hamish Henderson and the folk traditions of the far north. Henderson was one… Read More ›

  • Changin’ Scotland


    Changin’ Scotland – a weekend of politics, culture and ideas …. And fun! Friday March 25th-Sunday March 27th The Ceilidh Place, Ullapool Friday March 25th 8.30pm Land, Power and Politics Andy Wightman, writer, campaigner and author of ‘The Poor Had… Read More ›

  • Military intervention in Libya is a serious mistake, says Noam Chomsky


    The US, the UK, and France – the three countries who have done more historical damage to the Arab world than any others – have formed a de facto tripartite military coalition to intervene in the ongoing Libyan civil war. … Read More ›

  • Japan, England and the Social Aspiration Gap


    By Mike Small Imagine a country riven by a culture of deference and conservatism, wholly dependent on nuclear power and desperately short of a drive for social aspiration for change. I speak of course of England, a country sadly lacking… Read More ›

  • All is Not Lost


    It is important to identify this development in order to juxtapose it to the traditional structures and institutions of power. Similarly if the concept of a Scottish left is to have any meaning it may need to be considered as an emerging fuzzy entity rather than ring-fenced in advance by rigid absolutism or fixed ideology.

  • The End of Nuclear Energy


    This week, high profile environmentalists like George Monbiot (‘The Fukushima crisis should not spell the end of nuclear power‘) and Mark Lynas (‘What does the Japanese Quake Crisis Say About Nuclear Power’) wrote in defence of nuclear power putting the… Read More ›

  • The Eds of March


    By Thom Cross Once again Ed Miliband (accompanied by his ‘consigliere’ Ed Balls) visited Scotland last week to help shore-up Iain Gray’s leadership.  For two-Eds are better than wan Gray apparently. The visit was more than a canvass for the… Read More ›

  • Susan George, Crisis & Solutions


    For more than three decades ground-breaking scholar and activist Susan George has written expansively on the effects of neo-liberal economics on the poor. Product & Bella interviewed her. Your latest book is Whose Crisis? Whose Future? You’ve argued that the… Read More ›

  • On Being the Cartographers of a New Scotland


    By Lallands Peat Worrier  Those of you who have been lurking about here a good while will be familiar with my ideas about Alex Salmond’s speech-making powers. Of his remarks in Aviemore in 2010, and then at the SNP Conference… Read More ›

  • Notes from Tokyo


    Tokyo 12:20 hrs, 19 March 2011 Not all doom and gloom despite what the media may sometimes say ( or me, ha ha). Expressions of support by the Scottish parliament most welcome and cheering. UK embassy on the ball now… Read More ›

  • The Struggle in Wisconsin

    Protesters inside the capitol building, March 9.

    Events are still unfolding in Wisconsin, and may yet escalate further. But we can already draw some conclusions from them, which can guide us in the months ahead–for Wisconsin is surely only the first of many states that will see public outrage over austerity measures.

  • First Wales, Now Berwick?


    By Ray Bell Is Wales part of England? Is Berwick upon Tweed? I suspect most people would answer “no” to the first, and probably “yes” to the second. With the recent successful referendum on law making powers for the Welsh… Read More ›

  • Fukushima, Private Company – Public Catastrophe


    “The emergency shutdown has been conducted but the process of cooling down the reaction is currently not going as planned,” explained Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano, according to CNN.

  • Another World Is Possible


    We all spend far too much time online staring at lightboxes. Here’s a chance to get out and get to some great live events you won’t find in The Skinny or The List. Each month we preview some of the… Read More ›

  • Independent Women

    As we approach the full-on Holyrood election campaign, there will be few poltical parties putting women centre stage of their platform for government which is unfortunate. We need politicians who are prepared to think the unthinkable and totally redesign how we approach the design and delivery of public services.

  • Madmen


    The economic collapse has forced some unusual casualties. Woolies and the RAF went, Trident and Relocation Relocation Relocation didn’t (follow the logic if you can). Could the Old Firm derby be the next institution to be forced out of existence? Decades of bad blood and bigotry have not been enough to motivate politicians or administrators to act. Now simple economics might do what they manifestly failed to.

  • Who are Scotland’s Fianna Fail?


    By Mike Small Scottish nationalists are often obsessed by the ‘unionist media’. Sometimes we are guilty of this at Bella. At times this all gets a bit tired. The Scotsman stable is poor but it’s more weird anything else, and… Read More ›

  • A revolution against neoliberalism?

    NDP official Ahmed Ezz is arrested

    If rebellion results in a retrenchment of neoliberalism, millions will feel cheated. This article first appeared on the Al Jazeera website (on 24th Feb) under the pseudonym of ‘Abu Atris’ – a writer working in Egypt.  We’ve reprinted the article… Read More ›

  • MayDay! MayDay for Britain!


    The primary role of the British state is to stop the nation happening, in the nation’s proper, civic, dialectical, inclusive sense – and the replacement of a workers’ day by a ‘British day’ is an entirely normal sign of how Britain works.

  • Irish Ayes


    Rampant capitalism has brought the country to its knees so the only cure is more rampant capitalism. Not that anyone really has engaged in policy debate to any extent in this election given that the major parties all agree on the IMF/ECB approach and all vow to slash public spending. No, the main motivation of many voters seems to be to destroy Fianna Fail and the, if anything more despised, Greens whose principles melted in hubris the day they signed the pact.

  • AV – Alba Voice


    AV: It’s a smokescreen for real change. It’s British politics at it’s dire turgid worst. It’s puerile tinkering dressed up as change. As the people of North Africa are intent on throwing off tyrannical rule and exploring new democracies we are faced with some regurgitated constitutional sick which the Liberals, complicit in the wholesale dismantling of the public sector are – for some inexplicable reason – delighted about.

  • Wales Begins with a Yes


    On the 3rd of March, people in Wales shall be voting on greater powers for the Assembly. This is a huge step forward for the country, and another nail in the coffin of the UK. Despite some narrow-minded gibes about Wales being the “slow boat in the convoy”, by Scottish activists, this is in fact not the case. Wales is unlikely to overtake Scotland, but for the last ten years, it has actually travelled further and faster than Scotland has in that time.

  • Neu Reekie 2


    * It’s Neu like pie not Neu like Neo… “Neu! Reekie! is the very visceral meeting of avant-garde poetry and film. The night promises to shock and stun, playing host to the abstract and abstruse, the sinister and sanguine. Post… Read More ›

  • Irish Election 2011


    ‘Out with the bankers. We need a new Republic,’ a lad of barely 16 shouts. Regardless of their politics, not too many in Ireland would dispute the young man’s sentiment.

  • Berlusconi and the Libyan Connection

    This re-posted from Craig Murray who’s blog is under (re) construction… A very senior diplomatic source told me yesterday that Berlusconi is frantic lest Gadaffi falls and the channels are revealed by which Berlusconi gets a cut on the huge amounts of Libyan… Read More ›

  • Not Burns


    By Dougie Strang Last month the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum was officially opened by the First Minister and by Liz Lochhead, our new Scots Makar.  Earlier, it had opened to the public on the 1st of December 2010. There’s a hard… Read More ›

  • Perception is All


    A quick update across some of our stories from the last week…Alastair McIntosh writes notifying us with some regrest that his epic Ode to Donald Trump has not succeeded in turning him back, as the Daily (Hate) Mail has it… Read More ›

  • These are my Principals, and If You Don’t Like Them I Have Others…


    With the UCU-EIS conference in Edinburgh today we publish this by Chris Harvie (with research assistance from Stefan Buettner) Principals of Scottish Universities, currently undertaking drastic restructuring, recently gave themselves an 8.5% pay rise to an average of about £250,000…. Read More ›

  • 10 Things You Didn’t Know About RBS


    By Adam Ramsay…10 things you may not have known about the bank you own: We own 84% of RBS. They’ll be announcing their profits this week, and UK Uncutters across the country will be sitting in branches to remind everyone who it… Read More ›

  • Take Caledonia


    ‘Stop the World – Scotland wants to get on!’ said Winnie Ewing after winning Hamilton for the SNP in 1967. As revolutionary action sweeps the world how can we find new ways of participating and building political movements and embolden Scottish political expectations?

  • The Scotsman makes the alternative case to Independence

    Scptsman Front 17 2 11

    By Eddie Barnes & Andrew Whitaker This morning’s edition of The Scotsman newspaper puts the economic case for Scotland staying in the union.  It’s not a very strong case it has to be said. There are certainly a few flaws… Read More ›

  • Bye Bye Wendy

    So Go Lassie Go has the lowdown on the story behind Wendy’s departure here.  The reality is she had to resign not because of dodgy expenses (she was definitely more McLetchie than Devine in the scale of things). No her… Read More ›

  • Bill Aitken Must Go


    By Grace Murray As this goes up the Facebook page ‘Bill Aitken Must Go’ has over 500 people supporting it. The title of this page is not ‘Bill Aitken is abhorrent’ or ‘Bill Aitken is wrong’ – it calls for Aitken to… Read More ›

  • Notes From The Gutter, Music To My Ears


    by Kevin Williamson – And yet I feel this muckle thistle’s staun’in’ Atween me and the mune as pairt o’ a Plan.” When Hugh MacDiarmid’s whisky-fuelled ‘Drunk Man’ looks up from the gutter, through the dark silhouette of a thistle,… Read More ›

  • O Donald Trump, Woe Donald Trump

    Donald Trump is an American billionaire born of an exiled Hebridean mother. He plans to build “the world’s greatest golf course” and five hundred executive houses on a pristine beach near Aberdeen, previously viewed as a protected land. This bàrdachd… Read More ›

  • Planet Wasting Corporate Pirates


    As my next door neighbour puts it – what’s going on now is that we are being robbed. There is a bank robbery going on . . .
    We are governed by criminals. That’s the bottom line.

  • Catalonia at a Turning Point


    What is happening in Catalonia, translated into Scottish terms, might be said to be roughly as follows. The largest pro-devolution anti-independence political party – that would be the group that calls itself the Scottish Labour Party – increasingly asserts that devolution is not serving the best interests of the country and that further attempts to develop it are not likely to be beneficial. Accordingly, it is flirting with the more alluring prospects which independence appears to offer in comparison and is drawing nearer to the SNP. Clearly, as things stand, that would be nothing short of a fantasy. In Catalonia, on the other hand, what would not so long ago have been regarded as fantastical is in the process of transforming itself into a reality the contours of which will become clearer over the coming months.

  • Some impressionistic thoughts on the unfolding Egyptian revolution


    by Kevin Williamson STOP PRESS:  He’s gone! The volatile situation in Egypt is thrilling, inspiring, unpredictable, dangerous, engaging, enraging and confusing.  All over the world people are desperately searching for information, trying to find trusted news sources, trying to make… Read More ›

  • Huff Puff Enough?


    How does it feel – as an occasional Huff Post Blogger who knew there would never be any payment involved – to observe the whole enterprise being sold to AOL for three hundred or so million dollars? I suppose I should be outraged that my free labour has contributed to a valuation from which I won’t receive a penny of direct profit. But I’m not…

  • Cameron’s White Out


    As the leader of the National Front in France congratulated David Cameron on his views on multiculturalism for what she claimed was an endorsement of her party’s views on the failure of  immigration, saying: “It is exactly this type of… Read More ›

  • Corporate Britain versus Enterprise Scotland?

    Pyramikd of the capitalist system

    “In David Cameron we have a leader whose job is to quietly legitimise a semi-criminal, money-laundering economy” GEORGE MONBIOT To us, it’s an obscure shift of tax law. To the City, it’s the heist of the century | George Monbiot… Read More ›

  • Scottish Labour’s Conservative Disposition


    It remains one of the most remarkable electoral phenomena in post-war Europe that Scottish Labour has won every single British general election in Scotland since 1964. What makes this all the more remarkable is that the consequences of this have proved so devastating for the majority of Scottish Labour voters themselves. Like Gladstone’s repeated bouts of self-flagellation after purposively and, we must assume, successfully resisting the temptations of London’s East-End prostitutes, it seems that Scottish Labour voters just can’t get enough of Tory governments at Westminster.

  • The First Minister, the blogosphere, and a 2000 year history of Scotland’s languages

    By Kevin Williamson First things first.  We’d like to congratulate our friends at Newsnet Scotland for what is quite a scoop. Namely, persuading Scotland’s First Minister to pen a thoughtful article for their publication.  (You can read it in full… Read More ›

  • The Emperor’s New Strip


    By Christopher Harvie I once went to a football match. Motherwell versus Hearts at Fir Park, in the spring of 1958. One-all. I enjoyed it, but I’ve never gone to another. The same feeling recurred years later, reading the first… Read More ›