John Smith, 20 years on, Eagle Eye

John Smith, 20 years on

I won’t resume the debate about how Labour would have fared if John Smith, who died 20 years ago today, had lived. John McTernan pays tribute here, and Ian Bell also had a fine eulogy last week.
But McTernan’s article did pose one question that stands for the whole. The question is whether Smith would have [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Monday, 12 May 2014 at 12:17 pm

For the Union, Eagle Eye

For the Union

David Cameron has just made his biggest intervention yet in the fight over Scottish independence. This may or may not prove to be a good idea.
The PM is a skilled public speaker, but his party’s image in Scotland remains pestilential*, not helped by Cameron’s own background. Unfair though it is, he’s a gift to nationalists [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Friday, 7 February 2014 at 4:22 pm

Catalonia is following Scotland towards independence referendum in 2014, Notebook

Catalonia is following Scotland towards independence referendum in 2014

Catalonia took a step towards independence last month, announcing plans for a referendum on the region’s status within Spain. The Declaration of Sovereignty of the Catalan People, passed by the Catalan parliament, marks the start of a “National Transition” for reconsidering Catalonia’s constitutional arrangement.

By | Notebook | Wednesday, 20 February 2013 at 2:12 pm

Plans to replace the Trident nuclear weapons system, Eagle Eye

Plans to replace the Trident nuclear weapons system

Recent issues surrounding the Astute class submarines of the Royal Navy have wide implications for Scotland. Firstly, twenty-five miles west of Glasgow, in Argyle and Bute, four Vanguard class submarines store the entirety of Britain’s nuclear capacity. The submarines were built and introduced in the 1990s, following the end of the Cold War; their launch [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Monday, 26 November 2012 at 2:44 pm

How Salmond Could Win, Eagle Eye

How Salmond Could Win

I must apologise to my thoughtful and courteous respondent in the Scottish National Party, Kevin Pringle, for the delay in correcting my error in my post last week, which he pointed out.
I said that the last time an opinion poll in Scotland showed support for independence greater than opposition to it was in April 2008. He drew [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Tuesday, 13 November 2012 at 7:02 pm

The Man Who Saved the Union, Eagle Eye

The Man Who Saved the Union

I have written about Michael Moore, Secretary of State for Scotland, in The Independent on Sunday today. He was once such an anonymous Cabinet minister that he featured in this Times photograph (right) illustrating a story about civil service job cuts.
But I think that he might come to be regarded as the most successful Liberal [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 4 November 2012 at 12:01 pm

“There are good arguments for joining the euro”, Eagle Eye

“There are good arguments for joining the euro”

There was some interest on Twitter when I posted a line from Alex Salmond’s interview on BBC1’s Politics Show today.
So I thought I should put up a longer extract, so that readers can make a fairer assessment of the context of the First Minister’s words. He did go on to say “But”, after all, and as [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 6 November 2011 at 8:07 pm

ComRes poll: Alex Salmond’s week, Eagle Eye

ComRes poll: Alex Salmond’s week

Labour maintain a narrow lead in the first ComRes poll after the main party conferences, for tomorrow’s Independent on Sunday and Sunday Mirror:
Conservative       37% (-1)
Labour                   39% (+1)
Lib Dem                 10% (-1)
Others           [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Saturday, 15 October 2011 at 7:29 pm

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