Sunday, 24 August 2014

Not in the News -24th of August Edition

Welcome to another edition of our weekly series looking back at the stories which the main stream media in Scotland didn't offer much attention to, and comparing them to those that hit the front pages. Our last edition can be found here.

Bankers' Loyalty
A prime example of why it is better to build an economy on real goods and commodities was revealed this week as a number of US Banks threatened to re-locate from the City of London to locations within the EU.

With it appearing increasingly likely that Westminster will leave the EU (and have to negotiate a free-trade agreement that will not have favourable terms for Scotland), the American Banks are making contingencies to move operations to Dublin and/or Frankfurt. With independence, Scotland could also enjoy some benefit from the Bankers' flight from London, but re-industrialising our country will be the priority.

And of course, there are others who are looking to re-locate to Scotland.
Two wrongs make a far right!
You can read the story of Yvonne Hama, who appeared on the front page of the official no campaign website, here. It so shocking that even the BBC had to report it!
But none of that stopped Ms Hama from starring in the no campaign TV broadcast a day later. It's #hamatime!

Go Westminster! (Seriously, just go away and stop interfering)
Everyone in Scotland who is reading this article will be pleased to know that the tax they pay is contributing to the 'no' campaign! HM Government has been paying for better together adverts on various websites in an attempt to prevent a Yes vote in September's referendum.
This story appeared on, whose evidence comes from Google Adwords used on their site. It was confirmed that this process has continued into the final 28 days of the referendum, which is in direct contravention of the Edinburgh Agreement. The real question is whether or not the Electoral Commission will record this expenditure as part of the no campaign budget and act on this breach of election rules. We don't have high expectations.
Vote Yes and we'll punish you (vote no and we'll really punish you!)
Westminster's idle threats against Scottish Independence have been around since the start of the referendum campaign, but their very geniune signals of intent following a 'no' vote have become much clearer during the past week. The Times, the Herald, the Telegraph, the Scotsman and even the BBC are highlighting the coming cuts (although they use the estimate of £4 billion per year rather than the more likely £7 billion figure).

And these extra cuts are likely to come about despite up to 1,000,000 being unable to afford adequate housing with 100,000 of them being deemed too poor for even minimum standards. Instead of looking at money that is being wasted, it is those who have the least that will bare the brunt of future London budgets.
Vote Yes and Westminster will have to cut off its own leg to scratch us, vote no, and we'll be left defenceless to resist their austerity programme (as well as the demand for a pound of flesh from voters in England).
The missing 8 billion barrels of oil - Let's 'Frack' this case!
If you have any interaction with the Main Stream Media in Scotland, then you will have come across the name Ian Wood. This week, he claimed that there is just 15,000,000,000 to 16,500,000,000 barrels of oil left in the North Sea, which is much lower than the amount in Scottish Government's White Paper on Independence (24,000,000,000 barrels). The fact that this was significantly higher than the OBR's estimate of 10,000,000,000 barrels wasn't as widely reported.

So what do other experts in the field believe? Well the UK Government's own Department of Energy and Climate Change put the oil reserves at 35,000,000,000 barrels, and N-56, a think tank with members that operate in the North Sea, has estimates closer to 60,000,000,000. You can also read the reply to Mr Wood by economist and former advisor to Labour and Conservative Secretaries of State for Scotland Donald MacKay here.
Finally, and perhaps most significantly, in February of this year Ian Wood wrote a report saying that he believed there to be around 24,000,000,000 barrels left in the North Sea (yes, the same Ian Wood who, with no new information being presented to him, now believes that 8 billion barrels worth of oil has magically disappeared). He also advised young people to get involved in the North Sea industry as it can offer them 'a job for life'. Let's hope that none of them were silly enough to listen to him!

While nothing has changed with regards to the amount of extractable oil, a new feature is UK Government contracts for fracking becoming available. Mr Wood's company, the imaginatively titled 'Wood Group', is heavily involved in fracking, and Westminster will be handing out lucrative licences in various locations across Scotland and the UK. If the Wood Group were to receive enough of these, then Mr Wood's grandchildren would certainly be thankful for a no vote!
But the central question remains: do you believe the Scottish Government's position that we will have a massive windfall for numerous decades to come, a position based on record levels of investment by numerous oil companies as well as the evidence presented above, or Westminster's predictions that it will all be gone the moment we become independent. Here's a final bit of evidence to consider before you decide.
Things I don't know because I trust the BBC...#YesBecause!
The whole #YesBecause trend of twitter seemed to pass the BBC by this week. There were some fantastic messages of hope and optimism (as well as a few cheeky replies!) which helped to highlight the causes that we are campaigning for. It was fantastic that #YesBecause was seen around the world and it came just 1 day before Yes Scotland announced that 1 million voters in Scotland had signed the Yes Declaration.

Of course, there were a few #nobecause messages:
Remember to check our next 'not in the news' to find out what else I wouldn't know about if I trusted the BBC!
Silence in Unison
"SNP under fire for 'scandalous deceit' on future of NHS" was the headline in the Daily Express this week as the Yes Scotland campaign highlighted the threats to our health service. So it was no surprise that the controlled media in Scotland offered very little coverage to the warnings of NHS privatisation made by trade union group UNISON.
As you should know by now, if you want the facts, you need to look online. Our favourite article on this topic comes from Wings over Scotland with "More lying nationalists".
Join us again on Sunday for our next look at what's 'not in the news'!
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