Newsletters & Blogs

Please enjoy reading my newsletter and blogs about areas of interest.










Last week I wrote an article for The National newspaper.

While highlighting the injustices of the Fiscal Framework and failures of the UK Government is important in creating the case for an independent Scotland, we should also be looking for strategies which invest in Scotland’s future. We need to demonstrate healthy growth in the real economy. I cover some ideas on how we can achieve both economic autonomy and succeed in independence in the full article, which can be found here: 




A few days ago we were blessed to have the umpteenth rehash of Gordon Brown’s plans for Scotland. Not much has changed since he was first writing about this in the 1970s.  He wants Scotland to have just enough power to keep the natives quiet, but not enough to threaten the political establishment in London so beloved of Labour and Tory alike.

What does he want this time?  He wants basically the same as he promised back in 2014 when arguing along with the Tories that Scotland should vote no. Do you remember? This was how we were going to stay in the European Union.  It was how we were going to have decent pensions and how Scotland would benefit from the strength of the UK economy.  He promised a lot more powers, including economic powers, to the Scottish Parliament. He even called it the VOW.

Of course, he never delivered any of it when Chancellor of the Exchequer, and later as Prime Minister his amnesia helped him forget about every promise to Scotland. He has been making and breaking promises to Scotland for almost 50 years.  

But you might say, there are some new ideas this time.  The biggest of which is Labour’s commitment to abolish the House of Lords at some unstated time in the future.  You know, the same promise made as far back as 1887 by Keir Hardie. We have already waited 135 years for this promise to be fulfilled, so why not just promise it again? Can we trust Gordon Brown to get Keir Starmer to deliver this? If you think so, can you explain why the same Gordon Brown during his short period as Prime Minister appointed no fewer than an additional 34 Lords on top of the hundreds already there!

And what else can we deduce from Gordon Brown’s latest thoughts? Well, he does not want Scotland to have the power to re-enter the European Single Market, let alone re-enter the European Union.  He doesn’t want Scotland to have full economic powers. He doesn’t want to allow Scotland to have control of its own immigration system to ensure we can attract the skilled people we very much need such as  doctors, scientist,  nurses, engineers and farm workers to name only a few.

And of course, he doesn’t want the Scottish people to be able to decide their future.  In Gordon Brown’s world you have to be denied a vote on Scotland’s future.


In other news, the huge corruption that has alledgedly involved Tories from Baroness Michelle Mone to Michael Gove sheds further light on the need for Scotland to get away from the current political systems. Millions upon millions of pounds have been taken from taxpayers during the Covid 19 pandemic for the purchase of medical equipment that never worked but instead allowed Tories to enrich themselves at your expense.  Unsurprisingly of course Michelle Mone, Michael Gove and others all campaigned for a No vote back in 2014. Why would they want Scotland to have the power to clean up the corrupt system, they benefit so much from?

Time for a change, and no wonder support for Scottish Independence is rising!



As a member of both the Finance and Economy committees in the Scottish Parliament I typically read over 100 pages of official economic and financial papers each week.  I often read additional analysis to ensure I’m up to date.

Recently, I have been particularly interested in how to boost the economy.  From a strictly economic point of view, the two most significant initiatives would be to rejoin the European Single Market and to encourage immigration, attracting those workers we so desperately need.  In Falkirk East, many businesses have been badly affected by Brexit, and the ending of free movement with our European neighbours has prevented us from recruiting the many people we need to attract to come and work here.

Sadly, the Scottish Parliament lacks the powers to either rejoin the European Single market, or to attract workers from elsewhere.   The powers to do so lie exclusively with Westminster.  But the principal problem is a political one.  Both the Tory and Labour Parties are committed to a hard Brexit and to blocking recruitment of people from overseas.  Neither will take the action needed to improve the situation.

This attitude was brought home particularly strongly recently by an interview with Sir Keith Starmer, leader of the Labour Party.  He made it clear the Labour Party is for Brexit and against attracting workers from abroad.  Here is precisely what he said.

We don't want open borders. Freedom of movement has gone and it's not coming back.

I think we're recruiting too many people from overseas into, for example, the health service.”

I want to make it abundantly clear I welcome all those who have come to work in Scotland including as doctors and nurses in our Scottish NHS.  I find the attitude of  Sir Keir Starmer insulting and deplorable.

Besides not wanting to support Scotland’s needs regarding the economy, he also made it clear he fully supports the Tory position of denying the Scottish people a referendum on our future.  Worse still, when asked what democratic route the Scottish people should use to have their choice of future realized, he provided no answer.  In other words, he denied we should have the right to determine our future. 

However, I am committed to keep fighting for the cause of Scottish democracy and economic development.  Falkirk East deserves nothing less.



We cannot allow the Tory and Labour Parties to get their way and continue to damage Scotland’s economy and deny our democratic rights.


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