21st September 2018
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Carmichael reacts after narrow election win

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Alistair Carmichael has spoken about his narrow General Election victory after he emerged as the only surviving Liberal Democrat MP in Scotland.

Alistair Carmichael gives his acceptance speech after being returned as MP. Photo: Rosalind Griffiths

Alistair Carmichael gives his acceptance speech after being returned as MP. Photo: Rosalind Griffiths

The former secretary of state has insisted going into government with the Tories was “the right thing” for the country.

He has defended outgoing leader, Nick Clegg, who stood down after the party’s dismal performance at the polls.

However, he has ruled himself out of filling Mr Clegg’s shoes.

His comments come after his SNP opponent Danus Skene came nail-bitingly close to ousting Mr Carmichael during last night’s election count, and ending the long-held liberal dominance in the isles.

Across the country a so-called “tsunami” of seats fell to the pro-independence party, leaving the Lib Dems, Labour and Conservatives with just one seat each north of the border.

The count saw 9,407 votes for Mr Carmichael. But that was only marginally ahead of the 8,590 in Mr Skene’s favour, in what was widely regarded as a two-horse race between the Lib Dems and SNP. Perhaps surprisingly, Conservative candidate Donald Cameron finished third, with 2,025 – ahead of the 1,625 votes cast for Labour’s Gerry McGarvey. UKIP candidate Robert Smith commanded 1,082 votes across Orkney and Shetland.

Mr Carmichael insisted going into coalition with the Conservatives in 2010 was “the right thing” for the country. Doing so may well be one of the main factors that has cost the party so dearly, although Mr Carmichael insisted that did not explain Labour’s very poor performance nationwide.

“What we now have in Scotland is a politics that is completely, radically and fundamentally altered. And it is going to take us all time to come to terms with that,” he said.

“I feel really sorry for Nick [Clegg]. Never in the history of politics has a good man received so much abuse for doing the right thing. He still did, what I consider to be, the right thing for the country. He put the national interest before the party interest.”

But Mr Carmichael ruled himself out of trying to become the new party leader himself. “I’ve said this before, and nothing has changed in that regard.”

He admitted feeling a mixture of relief, frustration and disappointment.

“When you look at the results across Scotland, you realise that terms like ‘tsunami’, ‘earthquake’ and ‘landslide’ are not exaggerations. I am pleased to have survived it.”

He admitted the House of Commons would be “very different” than before.

“But I am still going there to do the job that is more important to me than anything else, and that is representing the people of Orkney and Shetland.

“I think that I had a degree of insulation from the fullest force of the nationalist surge because I have focused on doing the job of a local MP for the last 14 years, and that has helped me to hold the line.”

SNP candidate Danus Skene is cautious of the exit poll figures. Photo: Adam Guest.

SNP candidate Danus Skene. Photo: Adam Guest.

Meanwhile, Mr Skene said the SNP had achieved its objective of “rattling the cage” of politics in the isles.

“Something has happened up here. We’re in new territory – we’ve got a competitive politics. The referendum campaign was, on the face of it, lost up here from our point of view.

“But something changed that engaged more people, that told people that change was possible.

“There are significant movements towards a more participative, accountable, transparent politics we needed.”

Mr Skene said he was still taking stock after last night’s election result.

“The process I’m trying to describe about a new political dispensation up here is something I feel I’ve contributed to with this exercise, and that’s what should be happening. But it’s not a question of ‘me, me, me’.”

He warned of the consequences of another five years of having David Cameron at 10 Downing Street. “We were looking for a hung parliament, and that isn’t really going to happen. God help us, really.

“In my opinion John Swinney is not going to keep his finger in the dyke any more. As more and more cuts come down, Scottish government is not going to be able to defend them.

“Are the public going to blame the Scottish government for cuts in the funding to local authorities, or are they going to realise where it’s coming from?”

About Ryan Taylor

Ryan Taylor has worked as a reporter since 1995, and has been at The Shetland Times since 2007, covering a wide variety of news topics. Before then he reported for other newspapers in the Highlands, where he was raised, and in Fife, where he began his career with DC Thomson. He also has experience in broadcast journalism with Grampian Television. He has lived in Shetland since 2002, where he harbours an unhealthy interest in old cars and motorbikes.

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62 comments

  1. Robert Sim

    Like the rest of Scotland, the swing to the SNP in Orkney and Shetland was remarkable: 27%. As Danus Skene says, something has changed here – as it has in the rest of Scotland – in spite of the extremely narrow LibDem win. One wonders how this will play out in next year’s Holyrood election?

    • John Tulloch

      I don’t know how it will play out next year, Robert, but is there any chance of an odd swig of what you guys are on?

    • Gordon Harmer

      If the SNPs smoke and mirrors act is kept up and the electorate are fooled by an ongoing confidence trick we will be heading for a one party state. A one party state to do as it wishes, unopposed in Holyrood with no second house to reign it in, totalitarian in the extreme. Because of the unfair electoral systems in the UK and Scotland this will be possible with less than 50% of the total electorate voting for it. This will be the lead up to the next referendum on independence or heaven forbid UDI, neither being what Scotland needs.

      • Robert Sim

        “Because of the unfair electoral systems in the UK and Scotland this will be possible with less than 50% of the total electorate voting for it.” Maybe it’s time to start campaigning for PR, Gordon? I think surely everyone can agree that the UK parliamentary system is behind the rest of Europe and the world in maintaining an electoral system perhaps appropriate for the two-party, steam-powered age; but which is entirely unsuitable in the modern multi-party setup.

      • Gordon Harmer

        Yes Robert, PR would be the way to go, it would rule out anomaly’s like the SNP having a majority with 27% of the vote and the Tories having a majority with 37% of the vote. As well as having 59 Scottish MPs and 3 from the other parties when the vote was split 50/50. I would also rule out what we are heading for next year in Holyrood, but we have had a referendum on this and it was rejected with a poor turnout of 42%. Maybe we should have another referendum on electoral reform now that more folk are politically awake or even our own referendum on this in Scotland.

      • Bill Adams

        Don’t be silly, Gordon. Surely you do know that Scottish Parliament elections are by the Additional Member System of proportional representation. Even if the SNP were to win all the constituency seats, there would be plenty of MSP’s representing other political parties elected on the regional list vote.

      • Gordon Harmer

        Now who’s being silly Bill, it didn’t work last time we have an SNP government with only 27% of the vote, just what good have the list MSPs been in reigning the SNP in; Ill tell you, none. With the SNP on such a roll they will have a bigger majority next year and there will no one there to hold them back they will steamroll what ever they want through Holyrood. In essences a one party state, unless Cameron pulls a master stroke so the Scottish electorate see just what a mess we are heading for with the SNP.

      • Robert Duncan

        Gordon Harmer and Robert Sim,

        When you say it is “time for PR”, what voting system would you actually propose? Do you want outright proportional representation based on shares of the national vote? STV? What? the Additional Member system of the Scottish Government is a partially proportional system, and yet Mr Harmer seems to deride it constantly.

        If you do want outright PR, how do you then square that with local representation on a constituency level? I would favour voting reform but I worry when people start bemoaning the unfairness of seat allocations based purely on the somewhat irrelevant percentage of the vote throughout the whole country. We should have more choice in our local constituencies certainly, to for instance give staunchly anti-SNP voters the opportunity to show that preference, but how many of the SNP’s seats were won on outright majorities? My quick tally has it at over 32, with a three or four others on over 48.5% of the vote. To my mind, that indicates that 50% of the seats would be an unfair allocation for the SNP.

      • Robert Sim

        @Robert Duncan – good questions! I have been looking at the Electoral Reform (ER) website since last Thursday and I see there is a very active live petition there to move to some type of PR – the exact flavour is unspecified. For my own part, having read through the information on the ER site, I feel that STV is the most practical and fairest way ahead. But there are quite a few varieties to pick from!

    • Brian Smith

      The argument that the SNP let the Tories is nonsense. It was Labour who let the Tories in. But the outcome will not be what my SNP friends imagine: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/generalelection/election-results-snp-power-to-be-mostly-impotent-as-tory-policy-set-to-prevail-in-westminster-10237553.html

      • Brian Smith

        That’s in the short term. This is the best account I have seen so far of the long-term situation. Pundits like George Jacobson and Graham Johnston take note:
        http://www.leninology.co.uk/2015/05/this-is-not-1992.html

      • John Tulloch

        Brian,

        That wasn’t at all bad, very forthright – long term decline is a fair cop for the driving force.

        However the trigger for the.collapse, as Jim Murphy admitted was allowing the SNP to “steal Labour’s clothes” and masquerade as “the People’s Party” and not ruling out UK deals with them from the start. If I was an English voter the prospect of SNP power at Westminster would have sent me to the Tories, too.

        Pro-independence Scots, thinking voting SNP would make no difference, also deserted Labour in droves

        The change in McGarvey was dramatic after his opening
        “love-in” when the penny dropped in England about what was happening in England.

        As I said last week, Labour should “beware Greeks bearing gifts”!

        Too late, the damage was already done.

      • Robert Sim

        @John, Jim Murphy was typically wrong to claim that the SNP “stole Labour’s clothes”. Labour deserted the left wing of politics long ago, at the start of the Blair era if not before: the SNP has merely filled the vacuum. Murphy’s speech after his defeat was shameful: self-serving and desperate to blame everyone except himself. He should have resigned as Miliband (and indeed Clegg) had the integrity to do. He may well do so yet.

        More widely, the article to which Brian refers us is absolutely correct when it points out that “…the SNP defended a simple, civilised position: no austerity, stop demonising people on welfare, and welcome immigrants.” That position is akin to the one many of us envisaged for an independent Scotland. We now have an interesting position politically in that the UK is basically divided in two, with Scotland united – apart from three constituencies – behind that vision. It is not clear how we move forward from here but the Scottish electorate has at least articulated its position.

      • John Tulloch

        @Robert,

        I accept, neither, your opinion of Murphy’s speech or that he should resign. He came into the wreckage of the aftermath of the referendum and had five months to try and arrest the ‘Mexican wave’ of the SNP’s advance.

      • John Tulloch

        @Robert,

        Scotland is not “united”, Scotland is divided, as never before.

      • Johan Adamson

        Murphy was a leading figure of Better Together, of course he was ousted. He didn’t want my vote cos I wouldn’t vote for the Labour Unionist Party the same as I wouldn’t vote for the Conservative and Unionist party. When Dundee and Glasgow both voted Yes in the referundum, against Labour’s wishes, they should’ve realised they were a lost cause and tried to appease the nationalists who clearly existed in the labour voters in these areas at least.

        I agree that SNP have filled the vacuum of Labour moving to the centre so what is David Milliband on about?

  2. Barbara Maclean

    Nick Clegg has been a hard working M.P. Here in Hallam the party worked hard to protect him .Well done to them all.
    Seems a long time since I went to a Joe Grimmond meeting with my father and uncle in the Sellafirth Hall ,Yell . Probably early 50’s. Indoctrinated at an early age !

    • John Tulloch

      History will be much kinder to Nick Clegg and the Liberals than many of their own idiotic voters who can’t tell the difference between being a majority government and being a very much junior partner in a coalition – you can’t get everything you want if you are the latter.

      What alternative did Liberal voters want, Gordon Brown and New Labour back in, after they had facilitate the wrecking of the economy?

      The country is back on its feet now, albeit, with a way to go, the great irony being, thanks to those fairweather voters who deserted the Liberals, we now have a majority Tory government, which would almost certainly have resulted from a re-run of the last election, in any case. Clegg and Co. got no credit for softening the Tories austerity policies for five years and now they won’t be there to soften them this time. Pity.

      • Robin Stevenson

        “The country is back on its feet now”,…..LOL…sometimes John, you do make me laugh 🙂

  3. David Spence

    I believe, as from today, we will be living in very dangerous, divisive and highly corrupt times for the next 5 years of the vile Tory Policies taking their unjust place within the rest of the country. (in other words, the support of the minority rich, the suppression of our rights as workers (the expansion of zero hour contracts made compulsory) the continuation of major companies avoiding paying tax, the most vulnerable people within our society paying much more, and their quality of life made much more harder and many more oppressive legislation put through Parliament without consultation (via the backdoor, bribes, financial incentives payed to the vile Tory Party, using tax payers money to pay for private companies taking over Local Authority Services) and a Government which cares not about you unless you have an exceedingly healthy bank balance or being a shareholder to one of the companies taking over the services of the Local Authority.

    There is, literally, no credible opposition within Westminster, and this will most definitely give the vile Tories the green light to completely changed the whole economics of the country, a party that will be unchallenged to any legislation they enforce, the complete privatization of ALL Local Authority Services, an American based economy where morals, decisions, corruption and all other aspects within our society are totally based on the man-made concept of greed, profits and wealth no matter how damaging this may be to millions of people within the UK, a political party that puts its own interests ahead of anything else, a party that is not representative of the population as a whole, a party which totally contradicts its religious teachings to this of capitalism, where money, greed and profits are the new god, and where the pinnacle of Capitalism, the most corrupt, dangerous and selfish aspect of society, the banks.

    The vile Tories support a system where all the negative aspects of human nature (lying, cheating, deceiving, bribery, corruption, reduced civilian rights, war, conflict and many more) are encourage, endorsed and supported for the few at the cost of the many.

    As said in the Bible ‘ For the Love of Money is the Root to all Evils ‘ and we all should know what to do to stop it spreading further.

    • Gareth Fair

      ‘negative aspects of human nature (lying, cheating, deceiving, bribery, corruption, reduced civilian rights, war, conflict and many more) are encourage, endorsed and supported for the few at the cost of the many.’

      That sums up the Blair government perfectly!

  4. Michael Johnston

    Congratulations to Alistair Carmichael for retaining his seat. It is a shame that Lib Dems have suffered so badly as a result of putting the Country before party. The previous Government made mistakes but has not been given the credit it deserves for the progress made on revitalising our economy. Lib Dems played their part in that achievement. No doubt Nationalism with SNP and UKIP has also caused damage to Lib Dems

    I hope that SNP will be constructive at Westminster and not use their privileged position to continue demonising Westminster for their own ends. They have a responsibility at Westminster to work for the good of the whole of Scotland and the UK.

  5. Robin Stevenson

    “The former secretary of state has insisted going into government with the Tories was “the right thing” for the country”.

    Yep, good call from Alistair, and that “good call” cost Mr Carmichael and his party, complete and utter devastation throughout the entire UK, Carmichaels obviously learned absolutely Nothing, and is still defending what led to his party’s demise, how he can pretend that losing 49 seats and ALL credibility is “the right thing to do”, beggars belief? The truly sad part in all of this, are the unfortunate SNP voters in both Orkney and Shetland, that are stuck with this fantasist for another five years, thanks to those that chose to vote for a “dead party” rather than one which offered progressive politics?

    • John Tulloch

      Better a ‘dead party than a live one with a track record like the SNP’s in Shetland!

      Jo Grimond, whom the SNP suddenly reveres, managed very well with a few colleagues at Westminster, as did Jim Wallace.

      Alistair Carmichael will do just as well as either of those luminaries.

    • John Tulloch

      You seem to be saying the Liberals were wrong to put country before party interest.

      Obviously, the SNP would never do anything “as daft as that”!

      • Robin Stevenson

        John, there is no point in blaming the SNP simply because the Lib/Dems [while in power] did nothing whatsoever to help the people of Shetland, or indeed, Scotland for that matter. IF they’d put their country first before their own political gain then this would have been seen throughout the entire UK and shown in the number of seats which they managed to glean? alas, they failed, miserably, their voters, their country and their own credibility….So please dream on, while they try to recover from their self inflicted nightmare.

      • John Tulloch

        Robin Stevenson,

        Alistair Carmichael has done a damned sight better for Shetland than the SNP has done.

      • Robert Sim

        @John – You say “Alistair Carmichael has done a damned sight better for Shetland than the SNP has done”. Why then did his winning margin drop from almost 10,000 in 2010 to a paltry 817 this week?

      • John Tulloch

        Robert, you probably know some bright young people who are interested in politics.

        Try asking them what they think about ‘Our Islands, Our Future’ (OIOF). If they know what it is and even vaguely what it is about, ask them to carry out a straw poll of peers they play football, hockey or music with to get an indication of how many have even heard of it, far less know what it’s about.

        While the SNP has been busy transferring SIC oil reserves to its pals in the Central Best, Alistair Carmichael has been beavering away, getting official Westminster recognition that OIOF islands face higher costs of living and providing services and harrowing levels of fuel poverty.

        But no-one knows that because “between foys an’ fitba matches”, they do nothing but glower at the television and social media sites where they see and hear of nothing else but “the new politics” and how the SNP is going to take over from the old fuddy-duddies at Westminster and change the world.

        Aye. My granny used to say “Him at lives langest’ll see maist!”

  6. iantinkler

    Robert Sim, on the voting sustem and PR, proportionately, if that system were used we would now have two UKIP MP’s for every SNP MP. not a good prospect!

  7. Robert A Duncan

    “Putting the country before party” – a nice little soundbite but completely untrue, of course, most see it differently, propping up a Tory government while they wreaked havoc on the country, more like.

    • John Tulloch

      Fantasy, Robert A.

  8. Andy Holt

    Divorce may seem attractive when relationships hit hard times but I have observed that there are seldom winners in any separation. The Nationalists convince because they are driven by one aim, so called independence but none of them seems to have counted the cost nor do they appear to care. Austerity makes financial common sense. If you or I spend more than we earn we get in debt and no amount of borrowing can get us out of the hole. Yes, we might borrow to invest in a business that might eventually pay dividends, but simply to maintain standards we have become used to in sunnier financial times? Madness, my masters! We are massively in debt as a nation and just leaving the relationship of the Union will not solve that problem but exacerbate it. The intention of both Labour and the National Socialists is to attempt to spend their way out of debt with our money and that of our children and grandchildren. I personally thank God they were prevented from achieving their objectives, which threatened to bring us to the brink of bankruptcy whilst propitiating a form of politics fuelled by resentment, redundant class warfare, hatred of the English and those “vile Tories.”

    • John Tulloch

      Hear, hear!

    • Robin Stevenson

      Andy, I take it you’re aware that the UK is bordering on bankruptcy at the moment? and while it’s all fine and well to attempt to pay of your debt, let’s think who got us into this debt in the first place? was it the poor?….No, then why are they the ones getting hit to pay off the bankers folly?…Every worthy economist in the world will agree that austerity does NOT work, [unless ofc you’ve been asked by our MSM]…Borrowing for investment to accumulate wealth is the best and the ONLY way we should go.

      • Gareth Fair

        You can’t keep borrowing indefinitely, there comes a point where no one will lend to you. In 2013 the UK credit rating went from AAA to Aa1.
        We are already at a point where the government is engaging in ‘quantitive easing’ which is basically increasing the money supply to buy our own debt.
        The idea we can spend our way out of this assumes that Keynesian economics will work in our economy today.
        Keynes was a undoubtably a brilliant man but his theories were formulated during the Great Recession in 1936, the world was a very different place then.
        Indeed Keynes himself, in his later years noted, ‘I find myself more and more relying for a solution for our problems on the invisible hand which I tried to eject from economic thinking twenty years ago.” (11 April 1946). He was referring to Adam Smith.
        There is a place for Keynesian economics in today’s UK but it needs to be carefully applied and balanced with the dangers of excessive debt.
        This is what has been happening, it’s not like our debt is going down in absolute terms.
        It’s just the rate of increase has been slowing since 2010.
        The UK debt is still increasing at around £107 billion per annum, or around £2 billion each week, total now £1.56 trillion.
        This is hardly austerity.
        What we need is not more money spending but some really wise decisions on where and how it is spent and a continued crackdown on tax avoidance.

    • Brian Smith

      The homespun philosophy of the Daily Mail. Britain is one of the richest countries in the world. The notion that we have to cut £12 billion from the benefits budget because we are ‘all’ poor is bunkum. Only ragged trousered philanthropists buy the idea that the mega-rich can’t afford to pay tax.

      • John Tulloch

        I don’t have a good grasp of the details with this so I’m asking, not telling:

        Isn’t it the case that if the economy is growing and jobs are being created that fewer benefits will require to be paid?

        £12 billion sounds like an enormous sum but isn’t it less than 5 percent of the welfare budget?

        If unemployment falls by, say, 10 percent, will that money not be saved, automatically?

      • Robin Stevenson

        John, the GE is over and we can get back to reality, the reality is, putting people in “low paid” jobs [to massage the figures] is pointless, there are just as many “in work” people claiming benefits and having to use foodbanks as there are that aren’t employed at all. That is the reason we need to provide “Real jobs”, and a minimum living wage.

      • Robert Sim

        In answer to your questions, John, the increase in jobs under the coalition has not been accompanied by a meaningful rise in real pay. Real pay fell for six years between 2008 and 2014 as inflation was consistently higher than wage rises. While that trend now appears to be reversing, it can be explained more by record low inflation as a result of lower global oil prices than a strong increase in wage growth.

        The number of people using UK food banks almost trebled in 2013-14 to about one million people. That suggests that the rise in employment is failing to help many at the poorer end of society. In addition, the headline numbers conceal the big increase in self-employment and the rise of zero-hours contracts.

      • Brian Smith

        For a good account of the Tories’ disastrous stewardship of the economy, John, see the following article by Robert Skidelsky. And now look forward to more of the same.

        http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/04/george-osborne-s-cunning-plan-how-chancellors-austerity-narrative-has-harmed

      • laurence paton

        Quite Brian ,
        Would you agree that as we went through our standard state supplied education,
        we were never actually taught in any precise detail how the ” Money system ” works ? Perhaps I missed that bit in Modern studies ?
        What is not made common knowledge to the masses is ” the origin of money” Where does it come from or how is it conjured into existence ?
        I understand that up to a point in not to distant history it was ” the gold standard” being that the total paper money in circulation was backed up by an equal value of gold .
        Now live in an age of “fiat currency” the money in circulation can be expanded or contracted in relation to supply and demand ?
        97% of all money in the modern world is digital , it does not actually exist.
        The country has £1.3 trillion of national debt and many others have more .The world as a whole is in fact over £200 trillion in debt , can someone explain who we owe all this money to ?
        But back to the point , if we live in an age where fiat money is created out of thin air and that 97% of it is digital ( only exists as a pixel on a computer screen) could we not clear all this debt by simply switching the computer’s off ?

      • John Tulloch

        Robert, a major contributor to the increase in demand for food banks has been rising energy costs.

        Renewable energy is very expensive and puts up bills which increases fuel poverty. The fuel poor, faced with the dilemma “heat or eat”, use what money they have to “heat” and go to food banks to “eat”, thus increasing demand for food banks.

        The Luddite banning of modern oil/gas drilling technology – against the advice of the SNP’s own expert panel! – has contributed to high energy prices and thus, as above, to increased use of food banks.

        The Liberal are no better in this regard but the SNP bleating about “food bank Britain” is sheer humbug.

      • John Tulloch

        That’s interesting Brian. I followed the crisis avidly and my memory of the gravity of the Greek/Euro situation differs, markedly, from Skidelsky’s. The UK was recovering from the banking crisis only to be hit by the EU/Euro crisi – our main trading partner.

        UK government borrowing had ballooned, on the basis that it was necessary to prevent deflation. Fine, recovery would have increased tax returns and borrowing could be normalised.

        However, the Euro situation brought a shaky situation to near collapse. Portugal, Italy, Spain and Ireland joined Greece in the sick bay with, even, France not that far behind.

        If we’re borrowing, somebody has to lend with the twin beliefs:

        1. They’ll receive the interest they were promised.
        2. They’ll get their money back some day.

        If we own a factory at the top of a burning building, do we focus on maximising return from the factory or on putting the fire out and shoring up the structure?

        We are still running a large government deficit and expanding the national debt. As with the “War bonds”, we will be paying for this for a very long time, indeed.

        I understand annual UK debt interest now exceeds what we spend on defence.

        Poverty issues won’t go away and will always need to be addressed, however, it’s a truism that “we can’t help the poor by becoming one of them.”

      • Robin Stevenson

        “But back to the point , if we live in an age where fiat money is created out of thin air and that 97% of it is digital ( only exists as a pixel on a computer screen) could we not clear all this debt by simply switching the computer’s off ?”

        LOL…IF only we could Laurence, I wish this forum had a “Thumbs up/down facility”. then we’d really know what others thought about comments. 🙂

  9. Gordon Harmer

    In the independence referendum, 1,617,989 people voted Yes to separate from the UK. In the General Election, just 1,454,436 voted for the SNP. Take a look at the figures, its clear that those who want Scotland to break away from the UK are SNP supporters. In less than a year, 163,553 have turned their back on the SNP and the notion of breaking up the UK. These figures more than negate the 110,000 new SNP members they wipe them out, and then some.
    Today Ms Sturgeon told the new majority UK government that she would insist on more powers than were on offer under the Smith Commission, but she does not want full fiscal autonomy. Backtracking by a full 360 degrees because she knows Scotland would be worse off with FFA and no Barnett Formula.
    She has sent 56 MPs to Westminster; some with no earthly idea of what is expected of them along with others who only know arrogance and bluster. They will replace 56 Scottish MPs some who held cabinet posts and were part of the ruling coalition. So how on earth does she expect the new starts to have a louder voice and be in a position to do more for Scotland than the original 56?
    People will slowly wake up when they see what she has done to destroy Scotland representation in Westminster and it will not be to long before she loses another 163,533 SNP supporters.

    • Robin Stevenson

      Interesting way of juggling your statistics Gordon, but let’s look at it another way, 1,617,989 people voted “Yes” while 2,001,926, voted “No”, 1,454,436 voted SNP in the GE, while 1,456,029 voted for every other party in the GE.
      Therefore by your logic, the “Yes” camp lost 163,553 votes.
      While the “No” camp lost 545,897 votes.
      Again, by your logic Gordon, does this mean that 545,897 [more than half a million] have “turned their back” on the notion staying with the UK then?
      Looks to me, you’ve just scored an own goal, if you want to play silly statistics. 🙂

      • Gordon Harmer

        Robin, it still points to a no vote if we had a referendum today, maybe you did not notice but 1,456,029 is more than 1,454,436 so goal disallowed.
        I notice you did not take on the rest of my comment but just added some of your predictable spin resulting in a fail, again. So tell me what if the one Tory MP is made Secretary of State for Scotland just how much more clout will he have than all the 56 SNP MPs put together? The question does not need answering because he will be in a position to do a lot more for us than a bunch of rowdy back benchers led by Mr Nasty who could not bring himself to shake Christine Jardine’s hand when it was offered to him at the Gordon declaration. If that is the level of representation we can expect from the 56 SNP MPs then thank goodness we could have the only Scottish Tory in the cabinet to do the job they will not be able to.

      • Robin Stevenson

        Quite wrong Gordon, are you struggling with these figures or?

        Tell you what, let’s make it easier, 50% of the entire Scottish electorate [that voted] voted SNP, this would imply that the other 50% voted for ALL other parties, agreed? So therefore would you say that 50% is more or less than 45%?…..[and this isn’t even inc the green or Labour for Indy voters]

        Your one Tory MP scenario makes absolutely no sense frankly? He’ll do as he’s told from his London masters, in the same way the Lib/Dems and Labour will. All of these parties are merely extensions of the Westminster system, so what “clout” are you talking about? He’ll be told to sit at the back and don’t speak until spoken to.

        With regards to Christine Jardine, I’ll let her correct you Gordon 🙂

        https://twitter.com/Cajardine/status/597120395821580288

      • Gordon Harmer

        Robin, “Your one Tory MP scenario makes absolutely no sense frankly? He’ll do as he’s told from his London masters”. His London masters do not have the same diktat that the SNP do where no MP or MSP will speak out against the party or its leadership or one and other.
        As stated before Robin your maths leave a lot to be desired, any Labour for indy voters voted SNP that is how we now have a Tory majority (thank goodness). The amount of votes the SNP amassed this time equates to a very similar amount of votes amassed in the referendum, pointing to the fact it was no voters who did not vote this time, for what ever reason. Still pointing to the fact if we had a referendum today it would still be a no vote.

      • Robin Stevenson

        Whatever you choose to believe Gordon, IF by some weird and wonderful reason, you believe that going from 45% to 50% is [somehow] going down, I’ll leave you to your delusion?

  10. iantinkler

    Time for Scotland to pay its way and the SNP to put its money where its mouth is. Full fiscal autonomy and no Barnett formula. I will, once that is implemented be happy to go sooth to England , much to the relief of some no doubt. I do not like the prospect of my income tax and business rates trebling in the name of social justice and the ending of austerity. I would also rather watch Scotland’s bankruptcy (on the Greek pattern) from afar. I would want no part in it, so I would head South, alongside most the the business community and self employed. Just what would be left? another Euro Basket case dependent on IMF loans.

    • Robin Stevenson

      Would those be the same business people and doomsters that insisted that they’d ALL be heading South IF Scotland got their own Parliament back in 1999 then Ian?….And how many of them left again?…..Not a one.
      With regard to business rates, I [personally] was delighted when the SNP Scottish government implemented the “business bonus scheme”, so why you think rates would [somehow] treble is [once again] mischievous nonsense.

  11. ianselbie

    our English friends say that Sturgeon shot herself in the foot with her rhetoric on joining with Labour and her intentions towards the Tory party and their single mindedness to break up the UK so they voted for Conservative. twice the SNP have joined with Labour and twice it was a disaster for Labour. 20 year olds in the Scottish govt, what do they know about life, Greece is a preview of Scotland in 5/10 years after independance

    • Henry Condy

      Enough for the electorate to vote for her by a huge swing

      • Gordon Harmer

        More than half of us who bothered to vote did not vote for her.

  12. iantinkler

    Tell me Robin, just where do these funds for anti austerity to come from. As an employer the only way I can increase wages is by cutting down on staff. life is not a free ticket, someone has to pay for every benefit, if Scotland gives more than the rest of the UK, the working Scots will have to find that money, and those in business will move. Scotland will be immeasurably poorer for that, another Euro Basket case dependent on IMF loans, just like our left of center southern European countries.

    • Robin Stevenson

      Ian, IF I have to increase wages to a basic “Living wage”, then I increase my prices [of whatever I’m selling] to compensate for the extra expense. Happy staff, more productivity, fewer days off, happy times 🙂

  13. James Howitt

    I was involved in a very South coast LD/ Conservative marginal. Basically the vote swung Tory after Nicola and her many colleagues started mouthing off about the SNP being able to demand x, y and z; put backbone in the Labour government and Unify Scotland behind the SNP (with less than 50% of the vote on 71% turnout). Well, the SNP can demand all they want, there will be no backbine in a Labour government because there isn’t one and Scotland is not unified – far from it now as tactical voting in FPTP elections was prevalent.

    Next time it may be easier if the SNP shut up. It may also be worth noting that a lot of people have managed to work out that voting Labour brings in a Labour government; not voting Plaid Cymru (who are now the 4th Party of Wales) or Green. The rhetoric about austerity (which actually isnt – if you want to see austerity go to Greece); spending billions more per annum to allieviate it (the economy is growing at 2.5% p.a – hardly pitiful) and tax rises for all did put an awful lot of people off.

  14. Kathy Greaves

    To get back to the article,
    Alistair Carmichael says he wants to “get back to the job that is most important to him, representing the people of Orkney and Shetland”. Well, too late Mr Carmichael, I did not vote for you this time round precisely because you have not been representing the people of Shetland – on giving your opinion on Viking Energy you said that we (Shetlanders) would have to sort it out for ourselves, whilst at the same time you said you have been lobbying behind the scenes (in the corridors of Westminster) for wind farms to be built in the norther isles.

    We hope our Conservative UK government will listen to voters all over the country on the subject of onshore wind farms, and giant wind turbines built close to homes.

    • Brian Smith

      Anyone who voted Tory needs her or his head examined.

  15. Scott Graham

    The election result has been a fantastic for the country, just look at how the stock market has responded positively to the result. The most interesting part of all this will be if Cameron calls Sturgeon’s bluff and gives her full fiscal independence. During the referendum the SSNP were saying it would take less than 18 months to disengage from the UK, now she is saying it will take years! Dancing on the head of a pin! It strikes me that if she doesn’t press forward with their plans her and the SSNP’s credibility will be shot! I hope this happens because in this day and age nationalism in any form is backward. If she has the hubris to do it we will all either face tax rises or cuts to services. The is an undeniable fact given the finances of a population of 5 million which get more from the country than they contribute. Even they are not daft enought to plunge for something that will necessitate the ‘austerity’ they are so vocal against. I for one think that the idea of austerity should be viewed as sound financial management. You cannot spent more than you earn. This is obviously a principle that the SICbhave yet to fully grasp. Good luck SSNP you’ve been give the rope….