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Emrys

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Current location: Scotland
Member since: Mon Sep 7, 2009, 12:57 AM
Number of posts: 5,896

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I've long entertained this concept.

Then I coupled those sorts of numbers with in effect infinite distances and an infinite timespan, and am veering to the conclusion that the prospects for contact between any populations of these lifeforms while each is extant may be vanishingly unlikely.

I'll leave it to an earthbound human genius of my generation to sum up:

Glasgow protesters rejoice as men freed after immigration van standoff [Tweet-heavy]

Today is Eid al-Fitr. It's also the first day of new Scottish Parliament term. This happened in First Minister Nicola Sturgeon's constituency:

Hundreds of people surrounded vehicle men were held in and chanted ‘these are our neighbours, let them go’

Campaigners have hailed a victory for Glaswegian solidarity and told the Home Office “you messed with the wrong city” as two men detained by UK Immigration Enforcement were released back into their community after a day of protest.

Police Scotland intervened to free the men after a tense day-long standoff between immigration officials and hundreds of local residents, who surrounded their van in a residential street on the southside of Glasgow to stop the detention of the men during Eid al-Fitr.

Staff from Immigration Enforcement are believed to have swooped on a property in Pollokshields early on Thursday morning and detained people.

By mid-morning, a crowd of about 200 protesters surrounded the vehicle, preventing it from driving away, and chanting “these are our neighbours, let them go”, with one protester lying under the van to prevent it driving off.

www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2021/may/13/glasgow-residents-surround-and-block-immigration-van-from-leaving-street


[If anyone can't access the tweets below, I'll transcribe them on request, but since there are so many, it will make the post less cumbersome to read if I don't do so now.]

As the crowd grew throughout the day, that protester ended up lying underneath the van for eight hours.



https://twitter.com/daleharvey/status/1392916167623315461

The two men initially detained in the UK Home Office's callous dawn raid were finally released into the custody of renowned human rights lawyer Aamer Anwar (on the left in the blue face mask) after negotiations between him, the police, local SNP MP Alison Thewliss and interventions by other Scottish politicians, including First Minister Sturgeon herself, who reportedly had a forthright video exchange with the UK Home Office.



Here's Scotland's Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf:

https://twitter.com/HumzaYousaf/status/1392825743764246531

https://twitter.com/HumzaYousaf/status/1392880965228314625

Some social media posts and images during the day:

https://twitter.com/lewis_goodall/status/1392911570963939328

https://twitter.com/lorne_sausage/status/1392915645105381381



https://twitter.com/RadioClydeNews/status/1392878809859477510

https://twitter.com/ScotNational/status/1392926871793201153



https://twitter.com/STVNews/status/1392892631278145536

https://twitter.com/AamerAnwar/status/1392922714483089415

https://twitter.com/AntiRacismDay/status/1392904361207111681

[X-posted in the United Kingdom Group: https://www.democraticunderground.com/108820608 ]

Glasgow protesters rejoice as men freed after immigration van standoff [Tweet-heavy]

Today is Eid al-Fitr. It's also the first day of new Scottish Parliament term. This happened in First Minister Nicola Sturgeon's constituency:

Hundreds of people surrounded vehicle men were held in and chanted ‘these are our neighbours, let them go’

Campaigners have hailed a victory for Glaswegian solidarity and told the Home Office “you messed with the wrong city” as two men detained by UK Immigration Enforcement were released back into their community after a day of protest.

Police Scotland intervened to free the men after a tense day-long standoff between immigration officials and hundreds of local residents, who surrounded their van in a residential street on the southside of Glasgow to stop the detention of the men during Eid al-Fitr.

Staff from Immigration Enforcement are believed to have swooped on a property in Pollokshields early on Thursday morning and detained people.

By mid-morning, a crowd of about 200 protesters surrounded the vehicle, preventing it from driving away, and chanting “these are our neighbours, let them go”, with one protester lying under the van to prevent it driving off.

www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2021/may/13/glasgow-residents-surround-and-block-immigration-van-from-leaving-street


[If anyone can't access the tweets below, I'll transcribe them on request, but since there are so many, it will make the post less cumbersome to read if I don't do so now.]

As the crowd grew throughout the day, that protester ended up lying underneath the van for eight hours.



https://twitter.com/daleharvey/status/1392916167623315461

The two men initially detained in the UK Home Office's callous dawn raid were finally released into the custody of renowned human rights lawyer Aamer Anwar (on the left in the blue face mask) after negotiations between him, the police, local SNP MP Alison Thewliss and interventions by other Scottish politicians, including First Minister Sturgeon herself, who reportedly had a forthright video exchange with the UK Home Office.



Here's Scotland's Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf:

https://twitter.com/HumzaYousaf/status/1392825743764246531

https://twitter.com/HumzaYousaf/status/1392880965228314625

Some social media posts and images during the day:

https://twitter.com/lewis_goodall/status/1392911570963939328

https://twitter.com/lorne_sausage/status/1392915645105381381



https://twitter.com/RadioClydeNews/status/1392878809859477510

https://twitter.com/ScotNational/status/1392926871793201153



https://twitter.com/STVNews/status/1392892631278145536

https://twitter.com/AamerAnwar/status/1392922714483089415

https://twitter.com/AntiRacismDay/status/1392904361207111681

[X-posted in General Discussion: https://www.democraticunderground.com/100215427350 ]

Did dark money and dirty tactics swing the Scottish election?

[Note: If you clicked into this thread with an idea that it would claim the SNP's near-overall majority was the result of "dark money and dirty tactics", that's not what it's about at all. The article below consists of short paragraphs, so it's almost impossible to summarize meaningfully within DU's rules, so you'll need to click through if you want more meat. As an SNP voter, I don't have many complaints about the outcome whatever shenanigans went on, though I'd like to see cleaner elections run in general. Green voters have much more justifiable cause for anger.]

Rules flouted as sites promoting Unionist tactical voting spent more money on ads than the SNP, while ex-BNP ‘greens' siphoned off potentially crucial votes
...
Last week, the Guardian reported that unionists were spending heavily online in a bid to deny the SNP a majority. But it’s only now that the full scale of this campaigning can be seen.

A group called ‘Young Unionists’ spent more than £20,000 on Facebook ads, including more than £5,000 in the final days of the campaign. Tens of thousands of voters were pushed to the VoteUnion tactical voting tool.

Under new election legislation, digital adverts in Scotland are supposed to carry details of who paid for them. But Young Unionists’ ads had no such imprint and there was no name attached to the campaign.
...
When I unfurled my two-foot-long, peach-coloured list ballot paper on Thursday, my eye was drawn to a logo of a leaf with ‘Green’ in capital letters. This was the ‘Independent Green Voice’.

Thanks to investigative site the Ferret – which, full disclosure, I chair – I knew that Independent Green Voice was a tiny party whose five candidates included two former British National Party activists and a man accused of Holocaust denial (he denies the allegation). But did all Scottish voters know this? There are plenty of signs that they didn’t.
...
These voters mattered. In Glasgow, for example, where Independent Green Voice took 2,210 votes, the Green Party fell 914 votes short of a second seat on the regional list. In South of Scotland, the Greens were just 115 votes short of taking a seat. Independent Green Voice won 1,690.

https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/dark-money-investigations/did-dark-money-and-dirty-tactics-swing-scottish-election/

UK freeports blow as exporters face tariffs to 23 countries

Ministers admit some markets will be subject to duties under post-Brexit deal

Companies in freeports will not get to enjoy the full benefits of the tax-efficient zones if they export to certain countries including Canada, Norway, Switzerland and Singapore, the government has admitted.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Chancellor Rishi Sunak have declared that eight new English freeports — announced in the Budget — will be a “transformational” benefit from Brexit.

But officials disclosed on Sunday that recent post-Brexit trade agreements with 23 different countries included clauses that specifically prohibit manufacturers in freeport-type zones from benefiting from the deals.
...
The freeports to be outlined in the spring Budget are at Teesside, London Gateway, Liverpool City Region, Humber, Felixstowe, Southampton, Plymouth and East Midlands Airport.

https://www.ft.com/content/625d1913-9242-4d97-9d0b-9cd6925c4e0e?desktop=true&segmentId=d8d3e364-5197-20eb-17cf-2437841d178a#


One's sense of surprise that this wasn't foreseen when much-trumpeted trade deals were signed with the countries affected is tempered when one remembers that the negotiator was Liz Truss. Reading fine print - indeed any size of print - doesn't seem to be a strong point.

Scottish Parliament election results





SNP: 64 (+1)
Conservative: 31 (-)
Labour: 22 (-2)
Green: 8 (+2)
Lib Dem: 4 (-1)

This puts the SNP one seat short of an overall majority - something the parliament's PR election system is supposed to deny any party. Allied with the Greens, either in a loose confidence and supply agreement as in the previous parliament (most likely, I think) or a full-blown coalition, this gives a majority of 72 for independence versus 57 against.

The vast bulk of the SNP's seats were won on the first-past-the-post constituency votes, where its totals broke all records since Holyrood was founded. Without the regional list seats, the results would read:

SNP: 62
Conservative: 5
Labour: 2
Green: 0
Lib Dem: 4

This didn't stop the BBC's Laura Kuenssberg last night describing the state of play when most of the constituencies had declared as "knife-edge".

Sadly, in my own constituency, Dumbarton, Labour's long-serving Jackie Baillie increased her scant majority over the SNP in Scotland's most marginal constituency thanks to what looks unmistakeably like heavy tactical voting by local Tories (their party barely had any posters on lamp posts, which is a first):





Indeed, both Labour and the Tories had focused in their campaigns on the potential for tactical anti-SNP voting on the regional list and selected local contests. For instance, Labour crossover votes helped ex-Scottish Tory leader Jackson Carlaw retain his Eastwood constituency.

I couldn't put it any better than this:

https://twitter.com/Tucker5law/status/1390773067652141063

Malcolm Tucker 🏴‍☠️
@Tucker5law

Labour folk voting for Jackson Coleslaw means they've got no real socialist principles.
Tories voting for Baillie means that they don't think she has.


The Tories, having banged on about their opposition to another independence referendum incessantly during the campaign, and almost to the exclusion of all else in their campaign literature, are now trying to claim the election wasn't about independence at all.

Labour will be disappointed that their new leader, Anas Sarwar, failed to improve their fortunes, gaining them their worst result since Holyrood was established. Sarwar himself was beaten by Nicola Sturgeon in their Glasgow South constituency contest and later got in on the list.

The Lib Dems have now fallen below the five-seat threshold in the Scottish parliament that means they are no longer classed as a major party, and will lose committee appointments and funding resources.

The Greens saw co-leader Patrick Harvie miss out on a Glasgow contituency seat, but gain a place in parliament on the regional list. In the very last result of the whole election, his co-leader, newcomer Lorna Slater, also won the final slot on her constituency list to bring the Greens' representation up to eight MSPs:

https://twitter.com/patrickharvie/status/1391118646739603457

Patrick Harvie 🇪🇺 🌈
@patrickharvie

Well one of us had to be able to dance!

Tom Eden
@TomEden11

A boogie from @scottishgreens co-leader @lornaslater as she celebrates her election to Holyrood and the Greens’ best-ever election performance

[Twitter video]


The Alba Party, predictably, figured nowhere, gaining just over 2% of the vote in its best-performing region. What future it may have, we'll have to wait and see.

The new parliament will look a little different to the old one, as many long-serving MSPs retired. The new intake includes a larger proportion of women, the first two female BAME MSPs and the first wheelchair-reliant MSP.

The coming parliament is sure to be a challenging one. I have some confidence the politicians we've elected will be up to the job

Nicola Sturgeon calls ex-deputy leader of Britain First 'racist' in tense confrontation

Nicola Sturgeon shot back at former Britain First Deputy Leader Jayda Fransen when she confronted Scotland's First Minister as she was meeting voters in Glasgow, Scotland
...
Ms Fransen, who has convictions for religiously aggravated harassment, tells Ms Sturgeon: “What are you sorry for? Mass immigration, Marxism?

“I’m not a fascist. I’ve been on the ground speaking to locals who say you are an absolute disgrace …”

Ms Sturgeon said: “We’ll see what the locals’ view is later on.”

Ms Fransen said: “The locals, what the ones you have flooded from other countries?

“The decent people of Scotland don’t want it flooded with immigrants.”

Ms Sturgeon tells her: “You are a fascist, you are a racist and the southside of Glasgow will reject you.”

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/nicola-sturgeon-calls-ex-deputy-24056197


Fransen, who is running as an "Independent" (though she's a member of the British Freedom Party) in Sturgeon's constituency, is a previous member of the English Defence League and was deputy leader of Britain First from 2014 to 2019. She has multiple convictions for offences committed during 2015-2019, including religiously aggravated harassment, breach of the UK Public Order Act, religious harassment, and breach of the Northern Irish Public Order Act, ending up with a 36-week jail sentence in 2018 for another instance of religiously aggravated harassment committed in Ramsgate.

This was just about the liveliest event of today's election and was widely celebrated on Twitter:

https://twitter.com/OwenJones84/status/1390336734697828362

Owen Jones 🌹
@OwenJones84

"You're a fascist and a racist." 👏 👏 👏

Massive kudos to @NicolaSturgeon for facing down these far right thugs.

[Twitter video]
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