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back to article Scottish leader splurged £20k appealing disclosure of EU membership legal bungle

Alex Salmond wasted £20,000 of public money trying to stop the Scottish Information Commissioner's Office from revealing that he'd not taken legal advice on a post-independence Scotland's eligibility for European Union membership. The walrus-like Scottish National Party (SNP) leader used taxpayers' cash to fund a Court of …

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Anonymous Coward

If only it was their own money...

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Big Brother

@AC 11_10_13 10:23

"...If only it was their own money..."

They think it is.

Our only role is to do the work to earn it, and happily let them rifle through our wallets at will.

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ISP

Re: @AC 11_10_13 10:23

"Our only role is to do the work to earn it, and happily let them rifle through our wallets at will."

and I'm sure you never use any state provided services, like roads, museums, emergency services, etc...

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@ISP

"I'm sure you never use any state provided services, like roads, museums, emergency services, etc..."

Not in Scotland, no.

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ISP

Re: @ISP

And I don't use any in Westminster or Manchester for that matter but I imagine that some of my taxes go to funding things there too. What's your point?

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Anonymous Coward

He will win this easily, he has the 16-18 year old vote in the bag, with a 'free mobile phone for every vote'.....

Mind you I hope they like Blackberry phones.

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Anonymous Coward

Please, please

Vote for independence, I will no longer have to explain to a shop keeper that a Scottish £10 note is actually legal tender because it won't be.

The EU will also make it difficult for him to join, Spain may veto its membership simply on the grounds that if it doesn't the Catalan areas may try the same thing.

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Boffin

Re: Please, please

Technically scottish (and NI) notes arent "legal tender" in england and wales, no more than BoE notes are legal in scotland or NI.

http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/banknotes/Pages/about/faqs.aspx#16

It is up to the party to decide if the note is as-good-as-it-says-it-is

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Anonymous Coward

So their argument in their defence is

"we're just as bad as the other guys", then? Half the FOIs for 1/20th the population isn't a good ratio, nor is blowing more per objection.

Really hope this Indy thing doesn't go through... I have no objection in principle to it but no-one competent to run an established country has yet reared their head, let alone able to design a new one.

He's had 30 years of campaigning to get his house in order, get answers to questions, cost out basic models. And still hasn't shown any evidence that he's managed to get this far.

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Re: So their argument in their defence is

And the world as it is now, is exactly as it was 30 years ago.

Oh, wait...

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Stupid triple chinned idiot. Easily the most annoying man in Scotland.

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the fact that he is tripple chinned and/or a walrus should have nothing to do with our opinion of him.. dislike him for his weasely politics and his aparent lack of capabilities.. no reason to resort to namecalling over physical appearance... his idiocy stands perfectly well on its own without it.

I hope Scotland does declare itself independent, but probably not with mr.Salmond at the helm.. which is what elections are for :)

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Salmond already makes himself look like enough of a fool. Childish name calling, such as that in the article, does nothing but detract from what would otherwise be valid criticism.

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Seeing as you are so clever...

Can you tell me if Britain is eligible for membership when it no longer exists?

I'd say: "please" but I don't want to be pleasant to an idiot.

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Anonymous Coward

>The walrus-like Scottish National Party (SNP) leader

While I intensely dislike the SNP as they're only in it for power and personal gain (like most politicians) and will do little more than move bureaucracy from London to Edinburgh, with a different bunch of quangos and chums creaming off the country's assets for themselves, is there really any need for pathetic name-calling like this?

Is this the daily fucking mail or what?

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I think El Reg tries to be more like The Sun.....

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Re: Is there really any need for pathetic name-calling like this?

If this was the daily mail, we would have had:

The walrus-like Scottish National Party (SNP) leader whose dad hated England

Based on no research, but I'm assuming it's not too great a leap to find some one in Scotland who hates England....

As far as name-calling, when politicians stop being self-serving, thieving, corrupt w*nkers, I'll consider treating them as people....

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Anonymous Coward

"The walrus-like Scottish National Party (SNP) leader" is simply unkind to walruses.

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Anonymous Coward

Was going to say much the same thing.

What happened - did a walrus once nick the author's fish supper?

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>>>true what youre saying but they are going to pay on time no matter what the mainstream media tries and convince you otherwise. Already provisions in the law that treasury can allocate the funds for emergency purposes such as this.

Indeed, I saw him more as a Jabba the Hutt figure

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Devil

.....he's got a face like a City Bakeries Halloween cake...the fillings much the same too.

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Gav

Pathetic

Agreed.

Salmon is a prat, but his physique is not relevant. Sarcastic comments like that are fine for a opinion piece, or satire and comedy, but this is supposed to be news. It's pathetic .

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Re: Pathetic

You come here for the news?

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Re: Pathetic

So wait, are there politicians that the Reg hasn't insulted still?

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Linux

Showbiz for ugly people

Politics is legitimate "showbiz for ugly people" but the the odobenous Mr Salmond and his shrill sidekick Sturgeon are abusing the privilege. Do we really want them dominating our tellies and papers for years to come? It's a legitimate concern.

PS "Walrus" need not be a term of abuse necessarily. Sure the characteristic under-chin flotation sac appears to be present but if Mr Salmond is also equipped, walrus-like, with a sturdy baculum, then he is more to be envied than derided and it would help to explain his trademark smug demeanour.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Showbiz for ugly people

"odobenous"

I had to look that up! Reg commentards educational as usual.

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Re: Is there really any need for pathetic name-calling like this?

And "Humza Yousaf, external affairs spokesman for the SNP" says it all, really. What's his clan tartan?

Nationalism seems to have gotten rather less strident than it once was; where's REAL hostility when one needs it?

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Re: Is there really any need for pathetic name-calling like this?

A rather racist statement, he is Pakistani/Kenyan whose parents immigrated to Scotland in the 1960's.

However he has never had a real job in his life, after studying Politics at Glasgow University he worked for Bashor Ahmad SNP as a researcher. He is one of those career politicians that has no real experience other than living in the political bubble of politics which pretty much includes the whole bloody lot of them from lands end to john o groats.

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Just goes to show

Whether Scotland chooses independence or not, they're still going to end up with politicians as shit as the rest of us have.

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Headmaster

"Sic" yourself

...to try and [sic] hide information that never even existed.

"To try and" is a perfectly respectable Scottish construction.

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Re: "Sic" yourself

Yep, you'd regularly hear that in Ireland too. Jasper Hamill should try and remember that there's numerous valid dialects of English.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Re: "Sic" yourself

I thought you try to do something.

If you try and do something then it's not really trying, it's achieving.

Just because the general populace use the construct doesn't mean it's grammatically correct, we're not all writers.

This is (mostly) an IT publication, logic means something.

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Re: "Sic" yourself

It's also valid in northern England. Of course, as is the consensus view in much of the south, we're all subhuman ape men who shouldn't be taken seriously. To be honest it's amazing we manage to dress ourselves in the morning let alone construct a sentence.

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Headmaster

Re: "Sic" yourself

Are you sure it's valid in the context that's being used here?

"and" is a conjunction, you could play hide and seek, you could even try and convict.

If you try and kick a ball then you are successfully kicking a ball, but who/what are you trying?

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Re: "Sic" yourself

Trying to make sense of one dialect using the rules of another isn't going to get you very far. Geordies sometimes say 'us' instead of 'me'. You could spend all day complaining that it doesn't make any sense according to the rules of the Queen's English but it shouldn't come as a surprise since the dialect doesn't use that rule-set.

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Re: "Sic" yourself

It used to be that journalists and writers determined the language particularly the broadsheets. Now everyone considers themselves a writer, subsequently regional dialects are considered part of the language, at least by some.

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Anonymous Coward

It'll never happen...

Andy Parsons summed it up quite nicely on Mock the Week:

"41% of English people want to see Scotland go independent, but you're never going to find enough Scots who'll vote for anything that makes that many English people happy"

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As an Englishman

(well a South African who chose to be English)

I say give us a bloody referendum so we can vote on either kicking them out or the less onerous "Expulsion-max"

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an Englishman

We can't kick them out, we could vote to leave the union, but that would be a legal nightmare as Alex Salmond is finding out. Or rather not finding out and telling everyone "It'll be alright, we'll get automatic entry to the EU, we don't even need to apply, no-one will object, we'll keep the euro, sorry pound and we'll be able to control interest rates, despite having no influence on the Bank of England. Oh and everyone in Edinburgh will be able to take the tram to cast their votes for glorious independence."

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True indpendence, north & south of the border would be if the public could make politicians pay / tell the truth/ be accountable (to the people)

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So the actual 'scandal' here...

...is not that they tried to hide the legal advice, but that apparently they didn't get any in the first place. That seems pretty irresponsible.

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Re: So the actual 'scandal' here...

Kinda reminds me of Futurama:

Leela: Fry, we have a crate to deliver.

Fry: Well let's just dump it in the sewer and say we delivered it.

Bender: Too much work. Let's burn it and *say* we dumped it in the sewer.

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Anonymous Coward

I just find it funny that Alex Salmond wants independance from the rest of UK, BUT wants to be tied up with the EU.

Why fight for independance only to lose it again.

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You may find it funny but perhaps if you think about it, you'll see that there's a big difference between the UK and the EU.

London is a centre of absolute sovereign power that devolves it unwillingly and grudgingly. For the original devolution settlement the powers of the Scottish office were simply handed to the Scottish Parliament. The extra 'powers' the Calman commission granted were nothing more than frittering around the edges.

The EU, however, derives its power by virtue of the agreements made (treaties signed) by its member countries to allow the EU to run these areas for the common benefit of all.

The EU still does not decide on a nation's taxation and spending, welfare, foreign policy, defence policy and more. In the UK all of these are currently controlled by London and through independence, Scots would control these powers themselves.

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The no campaign is grasping at straws here

shows how terrifiied they are of us leaving the UK.

One thing that Salmond needs to get across is that a vote for independance isnt nescesarly a vote for the SNP or him. Once we are independent you could still vote tory if you so choose.

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Re: The no campaign is grasping at straws here

No-one is "terrified" of Scotland leaving the UK.

This just highlights the fact that the very people telling the public that independence is all planned out and will be rosy aren't doing their due diligence.

Its like when HP bought Autonomy without due diligence. Look how well that worked out.

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Re: The no campaign is grasping at straws here

considering "better together" have so far spouted little more than "pish and bullshite"

Examples:

1) "You'll have to pay roaming fees for using your phone in England" A) No shit sherlock b) O2s roaming costs are LESS than they charge for domestic use, due to EU rules.

2) You'll need to carry your passport: Again no shit sherlock, foreign country and all that.

3) Englanmd will be a different country... another no shit sherlock, but wait, what's that, Scotland and England are different countries with different legal systems, school systems, health care systems, and even different forms of the English language.

So far their claims would struggle to meet the requirements of a "Not Proven" let alone "Guilty" of delivering the truth.

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Re: The no campaign is grasping at straws here

As has been pointed out by most polls. There are probably more people south of the border that would vote for Scottish independence than there are north!! That's the biggest problem here. If the Scots want a vote, that's fine. Let them do so. However, as it's a 'Union' that requires that both parties want to stay together. So, those south of the border should be given a vote on whether we want to stay with Scotland. If the answers no, then Scotland should be split off regardless of their wishes.

Effectively, there are four outcomes and only one (both parties wanting to stay together) results in the UK remaining as is.

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Re: The no campaign is grasping at straws here

@Mad Mike

It doesn't require the consent of both parties to dissolve a Union - check out the divorce courts!

But the analogy is interesting in respect of Scottish independence and membership of the EU etc.

The break-up (if it happens) could take two forms: a formal divorce, in which case the assets are divided between the two parties, i.e. Scotland takes on a fair share of the assets and liabilities (National debt etc) of the former partnership, but that means the two parties are equal, and so both Scotland and RumpUK have EU/NATO/Eurovision membership etc or neither does.

Alternatively it ends up with the equivalent of Scotland abandoning the other half by packing a few belongings into a suitcase and doing a runner while RumpUK is down the boozer, and abandons any claim to the assets and benefits (Eurovision membership etc) BUT also walks away from any liabilities, so starts up as a country with NO national debt (and quite a lot of oil...) - sounds like the sort of country the EU would like to admit anyway.

The No camp can't have it both ways - if they want Scotland to take on some of the national debt, then they get a divorce and both countries can stay in the EU (if they want) - or both countries end up having to re-apply.

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