Recent Posts - page 35

  • Justice, Tory-style

    This piece of shit got four years for distributing 100,000 child porn photos of children being sexually abused. BBC News – Facebook child abuse images ringleader jailed “These are real children who are abused in order to satisfy the sexual… Read More ›

  • Ideas Fightback

    Jimmy Reid addresses a mass meeting of the Upper Clyde Shipyards workforce at Clydebank, July 1971

    Even while Scotland is rejecting right-wing policies at the polls and the mainstream of Scottish politics is walking away from these agendas, still they are almost inexplicably dominating the airwaves and the press. How can an issue so far off the real agenda as the privatisation of Scottish Water (or some precursor step) still be floating around? Why is the question of creating a market in higher education in Scotland still being discussed?

  • Blasda – Scotland’s Local Food Feast


    Launching this week is Blasda – Scotland’s local food feast, a massive celebration of the alternative to supermarket food culture  happening across the country next month. From East Kilbride, where the entirely volunteer-driven  EKDT are heating their polytunnels with dung-heaps… Read More ›

  • Rorschach England


    This has been England’s Rorschach moment, where the collective bile against the underclass that 30 years of neoliberal policy has created comes to the surface. Where exactly did the rioters get the idea that there is no higher value than acquiring individual wealth, or that branded goods are the route to identity and self-respect?

  • When I ask why are they poor, they call me political…


    “10yr old looters? Created by scum to live as scum. Don’t make pathetic excuses for criminality” The explosion of rage of Middle England is something to behold…

  • A Call to Reason


    This from the excellent Steven Maclean on Dreaming Genius: London is bracing itself for a fourth night of riots. Towns and cities all over the country are also now on alert as the unrest continues to spread. As it does,… Read More ›

  • Love Life


    Love Life is also a reminder that being radical doesn’t have to mean being grumpy. Nietzsche reckoned that holding on to resentment about the world not being the free and equal place you or I might want it to be can be a way of holding on to that inequality and lack of freedom. I think he’s got a point.

  • Edinburgh Book Fringe 2011

    pauline black

    If you’re bored of the book festival and jaded by the fringe…here’s quick reminder that the Book Fringe starts this Thursday… from Thursday 11 to Thursday 25 August 2011 at Word Power Books , 43-45 West Nicolson Street, Edinburgh EH8… Read More ›

  • Kevin Williamson on our radical seditious patriotic Bard

    Rabbie 'Che' Burns

    It takes a brave or foolish man to try and step into Robert Burns’s Scotland-size shoes but Bella Caledonia’s Kevin Williamson is doing it for fourteen nights in August.  Here he explains why: I’ve never been comfortable with the concept… Read More ›

  • Commons Manifesto (Part 2) – How can we squeeze CARBON out of the economy?


    By Justin Kenrick Most of the serious commentators on climate change see us as having already gone past the point of no return. This is not because the emissions in the atmosphere and the degrees of warming we are already… Read More ›

  • Paul Jorion

    This courtesy of the ever brilliant Frankly : The systemic crisis experienced by major economies has drawn attention to the shortcomings of current market practices. Generating as much poverty as growth and as much hidden risk as profitability, these practices… Read More ›

  • US Debt All Fixed Then?


    If you don’t already follow Greg Palast, you should, here’s why: It was quite upsetting to find our President blindfolded and tied to a chair at the GOP Tea Party headquarters, but I’m sure the $2.2 trillion ransom we paid… Read More ›

  • The Flottila Effect

    Small countries would never be able to survive the coming economic storms, right? We need to cling on to great stable financial states like, er the USA and the UK, er, right? The potential economic benefits of Welsh independence have… Read More ›

  • Undocumented People Undocumented Stories


    This is the second of a two part article by Rebecca Nada-Rajah, our correspondent who has just completed  a 4 month, 7000 km cycle journey to Iran. Undocumented People It is 5:45 AM. A mobile phone alarm goes off in… Read More ›

  • Undocumented Seeds, Undocumented People, Undocumented Stories


    This is the first of a two part article by Rebecca Nada-Rajah, our correspondent who has just completed  a 4 month, 7000 km cycle journey to Iran. Specially for Bella, Rebecca writes on Undocumented Seeds, Undocumented People, Undocumented Stories as… Read More ›

  • Why George Monbiot is Wrong About Nuclear Power


    As the Scottish Govt wavers about it’s previously crystal clear stance on nuclear power – and powerful lobby groups circle – it’s worth reading this by Jonathon Porrit about why nuclear power is an expensive disaster we don’t need. For… Read More ›

  • The Nonsense Guide to Climate Change


    After recent exchanges we thought this was useful…from George Marshall, an explanation of the ‘position’ of climate sceptics, reproduced from chapter 3 of Danny Chiver’s new book “The No-Nonsense Guide to Climate Change”: Don’t worry. The planet isn’t warming up… Read More ›

  • Commons Manifesto


    A spectre is haunting Europe. The spectre of climate change…

  • Debt: The First 5000 Years


    “The real dirty secret is that if the deficit ever completely went away, it would cause a major catastrophe.” – David Graeber As the US plays tug of war in a peculiar Jeckyll & Hyde war of economic ideology, Jesse… Read More ›

  • Always the Bridesmaid


    You’ve got to admire the good sense of those good people at The List, who chose our very own Bella to (almost) top this list of Scotland’s best websites. See here. Allmediascotland covered the glory here. Our own favorites in… Read More ›

  • The Roots of the Far Right


    As Hope Not Hate unveil the connections to the English far-right, we look at where Breivik came from. By Kate Higgins The shocking and tragic events in Norway bring home in stark relief the dangers inherent in extremism.  With at least… Read More ›

  • Being Human


    By Justin Kenrick Mapping our route, based on a more accurate understanding of what it is to be human… If what we need is – in part – to create a set of proposals, a routemap, to help us disentangle… Read More ›

  • ‘Television: manipulation’ – Puerto del Sol

    Demonstrators gather and shout slogans in Madrid's famous landmark Puerta del Sol

    Real Journalism Now outline 10 guidelines: “a manifesto of minimal standards, of ten simple and fundamental guidelines; and we sent out a call inviting our colleagues to join us in debating, defining, and in some cases returning to, the aims and basic principles of journalism.” In the Murdoch debacle this is where Scottish journalists should be looking for inspiration…

  • Will Victory Take Us Left?

    Scotland repels the Union...

    Scotland has its own civic culture which must be nurtured and developed in a direction which is decided by the Scottish People themselves, through their political and civic institutions and through the right to self-determination as enshrined in the UN Covenant on Civil and Political Rights in that they may freely determine their political status and purse their economic, social and cultural development. It must be for our people to determine their own political future through our own Scottish Parliament and for us then to freely enter into treaties of international law which will see us take a future position of cooperation and equality of development opportunities with all the people of the World in an end to colonialism, imperialism and exploitation.

  • Not in My Name


    In advance of his Fringe show (National Library of Scotland 4-28 Aug), Darran Anderson from 3AM magazine interviews Kevin Williamson (see also the Not in My Name site here) 3:AM: Aside from exploring the poet’s life and works, Robert Burns:… Read More ›

  • Westminster’s Holodeck


    By Mike Small There’s been a lot of mumbling recently (mostly from Tories) that ‘this Hackgate story is over’ and ‘everyone’s a bit bored now’. News that Andy Coulson will be tried in Scotland for perjury should put paid to… Read More ›

  • Lost in Space


    First Woolies, then News of the World, now Star Trek. What’s up next? Anyone for the Euro?

  • Place, Power, Transition & the Uncut Movement


    What’s the potency of the Transition Movement?

  • In Bruges


    Last week delegations from civic groups campaigning for independence across Europe met to establish a network of stateless nations and discuss potential for  common working. The Scottish Independence Convention, Welcome Mr. President … to the State of Catalonia and the… Read More ›

  • Hit the North


    “Economic ‘failure’ was used as an excuse for the IMF to privatise services, decimate societies and prop up or restore dictators across swathes of Latin America, Africa and elsewhere; and this approach is currently being used across southern Europe and is likely to reach the rest of us very soon…”

  • Atonement


    By Mike Small If the arrest of Rebekah Brooks yesterday is a ploy to confuse or interrupt parliamentary questions then the police are off the leash, and this denoument isn’t a  media crisis but a constitutional one. We shall see…. Read More ›

  • Change: Accelerator


    Should those active in political parties who see the need to reign in corporate power, focus not on party building but on building a broader movement of which their parties are a part? Should they focus less on electoral strategy than on culture shift strategy, and on connecting this to addressing the democratic deficit?

  • Elaine C Smith: Screen Presence/Screen Absence

    Reported Scotland

    In the new issue of Scottish Left Review, Elaine C Smith questions the democratic deficit in our media. The new political landscape we find ourselves in now in 2011 after the massive SNP victory in the Scottish elections, provides us… Read More ›

  • How can we criticise the current system in a way that prefigures and helps enable a more just society?


    By Justin Kenrick In a famous interview, the BBC’s political editor Andrew Marr asks Noam Chomsky whether he thinks Marr is “self-censoring”. Chomsky replies by saying, in effect: No, there is no self-censorship involved. Rather, those who advance in politics… Read More ›

  • Why do we Accept a System Driving us to Extinction?


    By Justin Kenrick It is the expectations we have of each other (the assumption about what is the norm) that shapes what is possible. Until, that is, some event disrupts those temporary certainties and we see through the appearance of… Read More ›

  • An End to Just-So Stories?


    A review of Beyond the Corporation, Humanity Working by David Erdal, The Bodley Head, London, ISBN 978-847-92109-3 by R. Eric Swanepoel (writer and coordinator of the campaign for a Cross-Party Group on Real Prosperity and Joined-Up Thinking)   Bruce K…. Read More ›

  • What is the Commons, and How does it Work?


    By Justin Kenrick In a strange 1984 kind of way, most people know the term through the phrase ‘The Tragedy of the Commons’. (i) Neo-liberalism’s mistake: The so-called ‘Tragedy of the Commons’ The so-called ‘Tragedy of the Commons’ is a… Read More ›

  • The Commons is Alive and Well, and We Can Be Part of It


    This is the second in a series of ‘Case for the Commons: the kinder Society we want’ posts – the third will try and answer the question: What is the Commons, and how does it work? See part one here…. Read More ›

  • A Pinochet for Our Times


    By Christopher Harvie Rupert Murdoch has apparently taken to the skies to protect the UK part of his media empire from the consequences of its misdeeds. There seems a certain parallel with the need of General Pinochet, fourteen years ago,… Read More ›

  • A Reputation Not Reconsidered


    By Michael Gardiner In a recent Scottish Review article, Kenneth Roy takes the opportunity of the announcement of the late Edwin Morgan’s will to expose what he sees as a hypocrisy in the Scottish liberal left in terms of its… Read More ›

  • Independence-Lite: the Triumph of Hope over Reality


    I suspect that in the past the idea of an independent Scotland has been such a ludicrous concept for British nationalists that it has blinded them to the fact that the SNP is not a joke party in the vein of a Wessex independence movement or a Yorkshire independence party and that’s part of the reason why Labour in particular has failed to recognise the threat to their hegemony in Scotland and to find a strategy to keep the SNP out of power in Holyrood…

  • Enough is Enough – MP Bigot Exposed

    The Traveller Education and Informatin Project - Girls from Aberdeen in a real Gypsy wagon at the Open Roads Festival in Glasgow in 2000.

    Continuing our series of ‘Letter Bombs’ – this as Ellie Dooks takes on Labour’s hapless Brian Donohoe MP: Below is an email I sent to MP Brian Donohoe this evening in response to his comments about Travellers in the Ayrshire… Read More ›

  • Climate Chaos – Can we stop it before its too late?


    This is the first in a series of ‘Case for the Commons: The kinder Society we want’ posts – the second will argue that international agreements have failed and will fail: what is needed is a ‘Commons’ approach to the… Read More ›

  • FED – Ideas to Sustain


    Realpolitik and Bella Caledonia present ‘FED – Ideas Worth Sustaining’, a one-day program of talks, discussions, and, most importantly, ideas. FED takes its cue from July’s TEDGlobal Edinburgh conference – but while TED costs an eye-watering £3,700 to attend, FED… Read More ›

  • Hari’s Game

    johann hari

    by Kevin Williamson Many years ago I was interviewed for a national newspaper by one of its senior journalists.  The interview took place in Glasgow, on a Saturday morning prior to an Old Firm match.  The city centre was teeming… Read More ›

  • Anger Management


    At the beginning of March 2011, Mervyn King, governor of the Bank of England, expressed his surprise to the British Treasury Select Committee (in the ‘Thatcher Room’ of all places), that there had not been more public anger in response to the financial crisis. In this respect, the muted response in Scotland to the crisis is little different to that in the other nations of Britain. But what is at least as surprising is that there has not been more public anger in Scotland at the absence of a Tory mandate to govern Scotland. We are, after all, talking about a government that was rejected by almost 85 per cent of Scottish voters and that won barely 2 per cent of seats in Scotland at the last British general election.

  • The Road to Nowhere


    With the news that everything the protestors at the Pollock Free State – said was true all along we feature Rosie Kane from her new blog: “Tomorrow evening a whole bunch of smiling politicians and dignitaries will stand on the… Read More ›

  • Greek Crisis and Response

    new austerity measures June 15, 2011 in Athens, Greece

    The only way to describe recent developments in Greece is to refer to a peaceful popular insurrection that has led to an open political crisis. The mass gatherings at city squares at the centres of all major Greek cities continue to gather momentum. Since the 25th of May, Athens and most Greek cities have experienced some of the biggest mass rallies in recent history. It is a unique experience of social mobilization. It is also a highly original form of protest, which combines mass rallies with a democratic process of discussion through mass people’s assemblies.

  • BOA Constrictor


    By Mike Small Two football stories jump out this week  – both share the common feature about a real lack of democracy in the game. One is about a club run by a fat-cat oligarch, the other is about the… Read More ›

  • FED – Ideas Worth Sustaining


    On July 11, TEDGlobal will host its first conference in Edinburgh. ‘The Stuff of Life’ is the theme: for just $6,000 you can listen to Philip Blond wax lyrical on the Big Society, Niall Ferguson present his version of history… Read More ›