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Seeking justice in an independent Scotland

As administrator I follow the discussions on the forum and occasionally see an issue in danger of being buried away under another topic head.

One such issue was that raised by Big Wullie under ‘Daily News Articles’.

I have therefore decided to develop it under its own head of ‘Seeking justice in an independent Scotland’.

Given that so little is heard about justice and independence I hope readers will feel moved to contribute.

Wullie originated the discussion by posting a Daily Record article which among other things stated.

Quote:
SCOTT Snowden and Robert Jennings were caged last year for the murders of Thomas Sharkey Senior,55, his son Thomas Jnr,21, and his daughter Bridget,eight, in Helensburgh in 2011.

THE pair who were jailed for life for murdering three members of a family in a house fire have launched their appeals against conviction.

Lawyers acting for Scott Snowden,39 and Robert Jennings,51, want judges at the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh to quash their clients' jail terms.

The two men were caged in July 2013 for the murders of Thomas Sharkey Senior,55, his son Thomas Jnr,21, and his daughter Bridget,eight, in Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire, in July 2011.

Trial judge Lord Matthews told Snowden that he would have to serve at least 33 years in prison before he would become eligible for parole. Jennings was ordered to serve at least 29 years behind bars.

Now the pair want Lord Carloway, Lady Smith and Lord Brodie to quash their murder convictions. Snowden's legal team believe that he should walk free from prison because they say Lord Matthews favoured the prosecution over the defence in his closing speech to the jury.

Jenning's legal team believe the judge was also wrong to allow a piece of evidence to go to the jury which they say was inaccurate and prejudiced the case against their client.

On Tuesday, Snowden's advocate Donald Findlay QC told the Appeal Court judges that Lord Matthews committed mistakes when he summed up evidence at the end of the case.............. On Tuesday, Mr Findlay said that when Lord Matthews summed up the case to the jury, he was too biased in favour of the prosecution.

Mr Findlay argued that this meant his client's conviction was unsafe and that it should be quashed.

Mr Findlay added: "He ran the risk of making the pieces of evidence seem more important to the jury than they actually were."

The appeal court hearing continues before Lady Smith, Lord Carloway and Lord Brodie on Wednesday.
http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news...arkey-fire-deaths-two-men-4074857


I added the following post in response.

Quote:
This and many other cases show that it usually doesn't pay to criticise the judiciary, courts, lawyers or police. It is as if a different higher standard of proof is required before any action will be taken. However as readers of this forum well know they do sometimes get it wrong.

I can understand this protective stance in terms of protecting the ‘majesty of the law’, (notice I didn’t say trust in the law’), or in limiting fishing expeditions to fasten the hook into something that might have gone wrong or even in bringing some sort of ‘finality’ to the proceedings. I can even see sense in seeking to root out the guilty who by seeking to cover up their own crimes attach themselves like bloodsuckers to the innocent.

It is an entirely different matter however when the system does get it wrong and judges show bias, lawyers fail to properly understand or even read their  brief or police officers, chasing a conviction, often in the face of public and media abhorrence at a crime, seek to equalise the battle by pushing ‘fiction’ as ‘fact’.

Systems tend to win in the end because time and money means nothing to them and they delay and obfuscate almost as a default position.

I know of a number of cases, of which Lockerbie, Willie Gage and Wullie Back are only three, where only a fool or someone blinkered and rendered almost blind would accept that at trial there was enough evidence to convict or that newly discovered information didn’t render the verdict totally untenable.

In other cases like that of Ed Milne from Forfar and Stephen Davidson from Irvine years of battling for justice has led to frustration and disillusionment and their being marginalised by the justice system. Rebuff after rebuff inevitably leads to the feeling that no-one is listening and yet they battle on.

While a supporter of independence I see little evidence of a political will to re-assess and update our justice system and the institutions within in. Blind faith in the judiciary, courts, law and police is no way to work towards a fairer and more just society. That said given a ‘No’ vote I suspect the existing system will settle back with a satisfied sigh.


Over to you readers.
Big Wullie

Quote:
Now the pair want Lord Carloway, Lady Smith and Lord Brodie to quash their murder convictions. Snowden's legal team believe that he should walk free from prison because they say Lord Matthews favoured the prosecution over the defence in his closing speech to the jury.


There is no way on the planet Lord Carloway is going to accept the above.

It featured very largely in my own appeal with tons of evidence the judge was baised.

The words used by Bristol Uni was the charge was couched in terms of guilt.

They almost always are couched in terms of guilt where the judges rehearse all the crown evidence but forget to mention all the defence or they attack the defence evidence.

The judge basically told them to only consider my Wives evidence with mine against the Crown, when there was other witnesses that saw me in Glasgow between 1.pm and 6.pm.

Her told them to consider the Policeman's (Muckle) evidence with great care because he was an "Off Duty Policeman"
Iain McKie

I was hoping that Wullie would come back on this because his appeal is a classic example of the assessment language being  'couched in terms of guilt'.

Given that the prosecution evidence is always taken at its highest by the SCCRC and appeal court then unless proved otherwise  I am of the opinion that inaccurate evidence and even downright fabrication is encouraged.

In Willie Gage’s submission to the Commission his representatives argued.

Quote:
‘The Commission's remit as we understand it is to 'review and investigate cases where it is alleged that a miscarriage of justice may have occurred in relation to conviction, sentence or both'. Surely as an investigatory body the Commission is entitled to come to its own conclusion as to the quality of the evidence at hand, as opposed to merely taking it at its highest value?’

In their ‘Statement of Reasons’ the Commission rejected this assertion.

As I stated in an earlier posting above

Quote:
‘This and many other cases show that it usually doesn't pay to criticise the judiciary, courts, lawyers or police. It is as if a different higher standard of proof is required before any action will be taken. However as readers of this forum well know they do sometimes get it wrong.’

Taken together this absolute faith in what lawyers and the police do and an acceptance of prosecution evidence at its highest means that matters are heavily weighted against the accused.
nugnug

i never understood why the judge has to give his opinions on the case surely that's between.the counsels and the jury.

in a lot of states in the usa the judge about the law not the facts of the case.
david

When judges are giving their standard directions to juries relating to evidence which can be used as corroboration they are obviously referring to crown evidence, which I feel highlights an appearance of bias if the judges are not referring to specific defence evidence when describing Reasonable Doubt

Judges very rarely refer to specific defence evidence heard during a trial when giving the standard directions on Reasonable Doubt.

They should be referring to the specific defence evidence heard during a trial when describing reasonable doubt and telling juries that if that specific evidence raises a reasonable doubt then they should acquit.

This would make a judges charge to the jury balanced.

Something else that does not sit well with me is Judges specifically telling juries that it needs 8 people to find you guilty. I sense some jurors would take this as they have to find you guilty.
Big Wullie

It is a bad day when our Government are reported to the United Nations over their breaches of Human Rights.

Well said Allison McInness:

http://alisonmcinnes.co.uk/en/art...s-investigation-into-snp-policies

McINNES: SALMOND MUST GIVE ASSURANCES OVER UN HUMAN RIGHTS INVESTIGATION INTO SNP POLICIES

August 10, 2014 9:32 AM

Scottish Liberal Democrats have called on First Minister Alex Salmond to give his assurances that he will accept all recommendations to come from a UN human rights investigation into some of the SNP's controversial justice policies.

The call comes after it was revealed today that the Scottish Human Rights Commission have submitted a dossier to the UN setting out concerns over armed police, stop and search and moves to abolish corroboration.

Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson, Alison McInnes MSP, said that the significant development highlights how, under the SNP government's direction, Scotland's once internationally respected liberal credentials have been tarnished. 

Commenting on the investigation, Mrs McInnes said: "It is a significant development that Kenny MacAskill's bullish and illiberal approach to stop and search, scrapping corroboration and armed police will now be reviewed on an international level because of concerns over the impact they will have on human rights.

"It is damning that the Justice Secretary's repeated dismissal of the real fears of people across Scotland has caused these controversial policies to be referred to the UN.

"Under the SNP government's direction, Scotland's once internationally-respected liberal credentials have been tarnished. For that, we are owed an apology.

"However more importantly, Alex Salmond must give his assurances that his government will follow every and any recommendation from the esteemed UN human rights commission to the letter. Scottish Liberal Democrats have led the opposition to each of these illiberal policies. Scottish Liberal Democrats will support every effort needed to uphold and protect fundamental human rights in order to guarantee the fair society that modern Scotland should expect from its government."
•Full details of the UN review feature in the Sunday Herald newspaper http://www.heraldscotland.com/pol...itor-scots-law-and-order.24967615
Iain McKie

Quote:
As a justice campaigner I agree with QC James Wolffe’s conclusion that “access to justice will only be a reality if the system delivers just decisions according to fair procedures within a reasonable time and at a reasonable cost” (Friends of The Scotsman, 8 September).

I cannot argue with his belief that “skilled legal representation” is also extremely important and an essential key to 
securing justice.

Unfortunately, I suspect that his pleas will fall on deaf ears 
as both civil and criminal justice in Scotland too often fails to 
deliver in these important areas.

Basically we have a system that is rooted in the past, with the maintenance of the status quo of more importance than ensuring that everyone has equal access to justice.

While the causes are complex, a central issue that Mr Wolffe fails to address is the lack of 
political will to do anything other than tinker with the somewhat incestuous and self-serving system that we have and which he is very much a component part of......... READ ON.....

http://www.scotsman.com/news/opin...ters/legal-self-service-1-3535011
Lambchop

I find the length of time that it took for the SHRC to act a cause for concern, stop and search had caused controversy within the UK but in Scotland the situation has been allowed to become downright ridiculous. SNP have a lot of work to do to put this right and I hope that they will do so now. Get rid of non statutory searches and revise the code of conduct for statutory searches. Some of the damage to society caused by this policy will never be repaired and it does make you wonder as a citizen what else SNP are happy to inflict upon Scottish citizens.
Iain McKie

Cannot argue with you here. One of my hopes is that an independent Scotland will encourage the political parties that more of the same is not good enough. To stop and search you can add the insular approach to human rights, the removal of corroboration and a far from healthy cosy relationship with the Crown Office. These actions are somewhat at odds with the social democratic moves elsewhere in health and education. While the past is not all bad, to wish to remain there is. Change is required and the question is how to bring that about.
Karen

I think now people just will not accept any old rubbish any more.

The one good thing this referendum has done has been that people are talking about all sorts of issues.  My hope is that this will carry on after the verdict regardless to who wins. Although I am hoping for Independence Smile
Scotland is a very exciting place to be right now.
david

I'd like to see all court proceedings in Scotland digitally recorded.

It is the 21st century after all
Karen

I would like to see that too David.

Everything should be videoed and recorded in courts. Might make them do things a bit differently.

And the defence should be given a copy of the video and recordings of proceedings.
Lambchop

There has been very little research on the subject and the effect on society in Scotland. I even read a suggestion that Scotland ask England for their research which has been collected extensively over the last 30 years. Stop and search has been carried out at four times the rate in  Scotland in comparison with England, nine times the rate of NY and no-one thought it was a good idea to research and record the effects? I find that quite staggering and to be honest downright frightening. It would be interesting to see how the average bobby on the beat thinks her/his time would be put to best use and if he/she thinks it is in finding people to stop and search or not.
Lambchop

It makes me question is this because we have an inexperienced government, which is not encouraging given the current situation.
Big Wullie

How Alex Salmond will never go against Kenny MacAskill.

Seems they were part of Group 79 once thrown out of the SNP and go away back in time with each other and share their hatred for the Queen.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/a...faction-expelled-party-1980s.html

How SNP once kicked out 'royal hating' Salmond: Scottish National Party leader was once member of Republican faction expelled from party in the 1980s

Salmond part of Republican faction expelled from SNP in 1980s
The 79 Group wanted to set up Scottish Socialist republic
Removal of Queen as Scotland's head of state one of its founding principles
Fervent Republicanism contrasts to his current support for the Queen

Alex Salmond was a leading member of a Republican faction that was expelled from the Scottish National Party in the 1980s.

The 79 Group – named after the year in which it was formed – wanted to set up a Scottish Socialist republic and spent several years fighting for more radical policies within the SNP.

The removal of the Queen as Scotland’s head of state was one of its founding principles.

The group even had links with Irish republican party Sinn Fein at the height of the Troubles in Northern Ireland.

Mr Salmond was one of its three spokesmen and took responsibility for publicity. He argued for greater militancy among workers, and advocated direct action including civil disobedience, according to his biographer, David Torrance.

But the group was eventually banned and its leading members – including Mr Salmond and Kenny MacAskill, now the Scottish justice minister, were expelled.

The group’s fervent Republicanism contrasts to Mr Salmond’s current support for the Queen. He has pledged to keep the monarchy if there is a Yes vote for Scottish independence.

‘I think Her Majesty the Queen, who has seen so many events in the course of her long reign, will be proud to be Queen of Scots as indeed we have been proud to have her as the monarch,’ the SNP leader said this week. But earlier this year, Mr MacAskill suggested there could be a referendum on scrapping the monarchy if Scots vote Yes.

He said in March: ‘We will inherit the situation we have with the Queen as head of state in the ceremonial capacity that she has. But it will be for the people of Scotland to decide.

‘If and when that would occur, if they wished to have a referendum, and we would hope we would become the government post-2016, it will be for whoever is in office then.’

The 79 Group, which was formally known as the ‘Interim Committee of the 79 Group Socialist Society’, was formed after the 1979 referendum asking Scots whether they wanted their own Scottish Assembly with devolved powers.

Despite a narrow majority in favour of devolution, no parliament was set up at that time because there was not the minimum required turnout of 40 per cent. The Scottish parliament was eventually formed after another referendum in 1997.

The 79 Group had called on the SNP to target urban working-class voters as a radical alternative to Labour. At one meeting the group  discussed a request from Sinn Fein for a speaker from the Irish Republican party to attend its annual conference. According to minutes of the meeting, Mr Salmond argued for rejecting the request.

Members of the 79 group were expelled from the SNP in 1982 but re-joined shortly afterwards. In 1985 Mr Salmond was elected to party office and began his rise up the SNP ranks to become its leader.

Mr Salmond has sought to brush off his involvement with the 79 Group, describing his involvement as the result of being a ‘brash young man’
_________________________________________________________

So now we know why MacAskill has got away with so much despite criticisms from our top judges he was not fit to hold office.

Two old cronies who hate the queen running Scotland.
Iain McKie

HERALD SCOTLAND

A break from vested interests

Tuesday 16 September 2014

I HAVE a great deal of sympathy with your correspondent Neil McPherson (Letters, September 13) and can understand his using the Scottish Government's track record to fuel his cynicism about independence resulting in a fairer society.

Like him I believe that to date our Government has proved to be a somewhat negative force in terms of social justice in its favouring of the system at the expense of the individual. In support of his argument he highlights regressive measures like the removal of the need for corroboration, unaccountable policing and Scotland's shame, the failure to resolve the disgrace that is the Lockerbie prosecution. To that I could add the Government's increasingly incestuous relationship with the Crown Office and police which has resulted in what Lord McCluskey has referred to as the "blurring of important boundaries" and the arrogant and obstructive "wha's like us"' approach to human rights principles espoused in the Supreme Court and European Court.

As a justice campaigner and supporter of independence, however, I have been encouraged to approach the referendum confident that a vote for independence will result in a new Scottish constitution which not only enshrines these principles of justice and equality but produces a government committed to that cause.

For me this vote is not about Alex Salmond, David Cameron or, God forbid, Boris Johnston, or Nigel Farage, or any other political leader. Independence offers us the opportunity to escape from the "one eye on Westminster" approach of Labour, Conservative and Liberal and to improve the quality of political representation we enjoy in Scotland. It opens the door for an intellectual and cultural awakening and to the creation of a society where individual freedom is valued above sustaining the status quo and playing to vested interests.

Above all we require visionary voices offering escape from the old systems and self-serving values which have suffocated dissent and devalued justice. We need to develop the political will to ensure that our justice system and its institutions serve justice for all and not the self-interest of a minority elite.

I would be the first to accept that my Yes vote will be a considerable act of faith and that difficult times lie ahead, but at least it echoes Nelson Mandela's hope: "May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears."

Iain AJ McKie,
27 Donnini Court,
South Beach Road,
Ayr.

http://www.heraldscotland.com/com...ak-from-vested-interests.25336776
Big Wullie

What will remain in my mind when I vote no on Thursday is the comment "He Who Pays The Piper Calls The Tunes" when MacAskill had asked Lord Carloway to give him a favourable opinion to Abolish Corroboration.

Lord Carloway was then made the second highest judge in the country.

Well paid and in debt to MacAskill.

Wonder if he too was a member Group 79...................

I do not accept an independent Scotland would make the SNP more accountable indeed I firmly believe it will make them more oppressive.

Anyone seen the minister for justice during this debate ?
Iain McKie

Willie while I do not reject your arguments and in fact agree that many things the current administration have done in the field of justice have  been wrong you have still not answered my oft repeated question to you.

If things are not right under the current regime how do you propose that they will be changed by voting ‘No’ to independence?

How are you going to change the judiciary’s attitudes and decisions most of which are nothing to do with the Supreme Court? How, within the present justice system which you so rightly criticise, are you going to make the politicians, the SCCRC, and everyone else within that system responsive to people like yourself who have genuine grievances to pursue.

Please give me your answers and if you do and your solutions have any  hope of achieving your goals then I will gladly re-consider  my ‘Yes’ vote.

The present system is not working. My solution is independence. What is yours?
Big Wullie

Iain McKie wrote:
Willie while I do not reject your arguments and in fact agree that many things the current administration have done in the field of justice have  been wrong you have still not answered my oft repeated question to you.

If things are not right under the current regime how do you propose that they will be changed by voting ‘No’ to independence?

How are you going to change the judiciary’s attitudes and decisions most of which are nothing to do with the Supreme Court? How, within the present justice system which you so rightly criticise, are you going to make the politicians, the SCCRC, and everyone else within that system responsive to people like yourself who have genuine grievances to pursue.

Please give me your answers and if you do and your solutions have any  hope of achieving your goals then I will gladly re-consider  my ‘Yes’ vote.

The present system is not working. My solution is independence. What is yours?


The point I am making Iain is things will not change and people like us will never make them change either.

He Who Pays the Piper Calls the Tunes.

It does not matter what government we have things will only get worse in an independent Scotland because we will have no Human Rights if access to the UKSC are abolished which is a sure thing.

We all remember the outrageous comments from the Government when Nat Fraser and Cadder's cases were set aside at UKSC.

Who are they to tell us what to do.

What do they know about corroboration


In an independent Scotland you are missing my point there will be no UKLSC therefore no overseer of our Corrupt Courts and Corrupt Decisions emanating from Edinburgh where when they do not want to answer issues raised at appeals they just ignore them.

I only see more oppression in Independence.
Iain McKie

Willie I do not challenge your decision to vote ’No’ only your logic.

If I read you right you are basing your whole argument on not voting for independence on retaining the power of the Supreme Court to hold the Scottish Authorities to account.

As things stand this court has only powers to affect a very small percentage of the decisions made by the judiciary and justice authorities in Scotland.

You seem to be blinded by the belief that come independence nothing will change or if there is change the very same people will be in charge. Do you really believe that the labour voters, who could well be the biggest factor in achieving independence, will vote in the SNP the next time in an independent Scotland? The only way to raise the quality of our political representation is through independence otherwise look out for the same mediocrity.

Only time will tell but my best estimate is that should independence be rejected then the SNP will be even more in control and even if they are not you are relying on Joanne Lamont, Ruth Davidson and Willie Rennie to make things better when all they can do is look to Westminster for instructions.

Scotland needs wholesale change in its philosophy, culture, economics and social justice if your legitimate wish for justice is ever to be realised. Of all the people I have been debating with your decision to vote ‘No’ is hardest to understand but of course I totally respect your right to do what you believe right. I just despair that you have shot yourself in the foot.

You are voting back in the very system that denied you justice.
Big Wullie

Iain McKie wrote:
Willie I do not challenge your decision to vote ’No’ only your logic.

If I read you right you are basing your whole argument on not voting for independence on retaining the power of the Supreme Court to hold the Scottish Authorities to account.

As things stand this court has only powers to affect a very small percentage of the decisions made by the judiciary and justice authorities in Scotland.

You seem to be blinded by the belief that come independence nothing will change or if there is change the very same people will be in charge. Do you really believe that the labour voters, who could well be the biggest factor in achieving independence, will vote in the SNP the next time in an independent Scotland? The only way to raise the quality of our political representation is through independence otherwise look out for the same mediocrity.

Only time will tell but my best estimate is that should independence be rejected then the SNP will be even more in control and even if they are not you are relying on Joanne Lamont, Ruth Davidson and Willie Rennie to make things better when all they can do is look to Westminster for instructions.

Scotland needs wholesale change in its philosophy, culture, economics and social justice if your legitimate wish for justice is ever to be realised. Of all the people I have been debating with your decision to vote ‘No’ is hardest to understand but of course I totally respect your right to do what you believe right. I just despair that you have shot yourself in the foot.

You are voting back in the very system that denied you justice.


Let me just correct the above.

Yes part of the reasons I am voting NO is the justice system and their systemic oppression and Justice Ministers lack of accountability along with our judges who can just show two fingers to our Parliament when it suits them.

I have other reasons............................

The lack of answers over the pound.
The concerns raised by many businesses throughout Scotland including our banks.
The uncertainty about Jobs particularly shipbuilding.
The uncertainty about our Currency and in particular if we will be required to use a Euro if and when we become part of Europe which for me is a foregone conclusion.
The uncertainty about our NHS. Particularly since this is already devolved to our Parliament.

I really do not know what makes anyone think the SNP will be voted out at the next election.

Here is a challenge Iain

Prove that Labour would win an election particularly since you appear in your post to have no faith in Johan Lamont, Ruth Davis or Willie Rennie.


The lack of answers emanating from our Government is appalling and not just in this debate I am talking about the arrogance Salmond and MacAskill show to the public.

I really have come to a point, I do not believe a word they utter.
Big Wullie

A challenge to every yes voter in Scotland.

Ask Alex Salmond and Nicola sturgeon to fundraise for your issues.

They did it here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPdX9v54svI

Even more of a challenge:

The next time you are attending court ask Nicola Sturgeon to give you a reference.

She did it here:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/u...court-for-benefits-fraudster.html

For this man:

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homep...-cheat-Abdul-Rauf-to-pay-53k.html
Lambchop

I know it is on everyone's mind but it is hard to talk about any issue when everything becomes about the referendum. Sad
david

Does anyone think there will be any difference when it comes to the glaring bias per Millionaire Scottish High Court Judges.

What also annoys me is the FACT some of them are responsible for some of the worst Miscarriage of Justice /controversial cases in the last 15 years yet they are rewarded by the position of a High Court Judge.

Couldn't make it up.
Big Wullie

Exactly what Miscarriages of Justice have the SNP ever been involved with helping to a success ?


How many have SNP now covered up and I will start this off by naming two.

Lockerbie

Hollie Grieg

How many years have they been in power ?
david

Who held the position of lord Advocate and Solicitor General in the prosecution of Megrahi?
Iain McKie

The problem is Willie none of the politicians is in a position to prove anything in this referendum – or at least very little.

What you appear to be voting against is uncertainty and a belief that more of the same will be better than independence. Do you really believe that Westminster will keep its promises and that centralised government will give a hoot about social justice. Basically a 'No' vote is a vote for more of the same. Not a position that would favour you.

Your cause, which many of us have supported, is a just one but my argument to date has been predicated on a belief that the only way you will get justice  is through what would effectively be a bloodless social revolution – such is the scale of the change needed. Will this occur? I don’t know but I have the confidence in myself , my family and Scotland to believe that we can do better and that the UK, as presently constituted,  is based on a culture of self interest where social justice comes down well down the list of priorities of those in power.

You ask:

Quote:
Prove that Labour would win an election particularly since you appear in your post to have no faith in Joanne Lamont, Ruth Davis or Willie Rennie.

My argument to you and the others who have posted is simple. It is only through independence that you will create a culture where a change of philosophy is possible which hopefully will result in  more able people seeking election. That we desperately need to raise the quality of our representation must be clear to you.

While I cannot prove that labour would win an election I would be willing to bet that given a ‘No’ vote the SNP will remain in power for the foreseeable future unless the other parties can take their eyes off Westminster and set an agenda which is in accord with social justice in Scotland. If they don't who is there to look after Scotland's interests?

Whatever the result I hope your goals are realised and I will of course do all I can to support your cause.
Big Wullie

Quote:
Do you really believe that Westminster will keep its promises


NO

Nor do I believe the SNP will either.

Quote:
While I cannot prove that labour would win an election I would be willing to bet that given a ‘No’ vote the SNP will remain in power for the foreseeable future unless the other parties can take their eyes off Westminster and set an agenda which is in accord with social justice in Scotland. If they don't who is there to look after Scotland's interests?


I actually believe a NO Vote will be the end of Salmond as we know him perhaps even see him booted from the leadership hence perhaps a better more willing to listen SNP.

Under the leadership of Salmond we have seen no justice and MacAskill given a free reign to do as he pleases.

Corroboration and his plans to remove this shows his utter contempt for the justice system in Scotland.

Arming police with public consultation while telling us the biggest majority of the public wanted this shows us what we are in for in an independent Scotland.

Naw Thanks.
david

the vote results are nearly here.

Whatever way it goes it is certainly good that at last the Scottish people have been out on the streets in unprecedented numbers for what they believe in.


Hopefully this is just the beginning of a more vocal Scotland
Iain McKie

A long night ahead and hopefully one which allows Scotland to   find it's voice and achieve much needed change.
Big Wullie

I can report we still have a UK Supreme Court.

I am delighted and overjoyed SNP only won 4 out of 26 so far.
Big Wullie

I am proud to say I voted NO as did all my closest family.

The people have now spoken and common sense prevailed lets now get on with our issues and please please don't let it divide us any further.

We have not voted for the same old same old perhaps the SNP government will now listen to the people who voted for change.

Key turning point for me turning against the SNP were mostly but not exclusively matters of justice and a fairer Scotland.

When I heard our first minister say we should go to European Court rather then our own UK one, because they (ECHR) cannot open prison doors I was appalled because not only does this affect Criminal cases it affects everyone in Scotland, Civil and Criminal cases alike.

I know lots of people will be hurting in Scotland today so please lets not dwell on their sorrow and start again to make Scotland a more just society.

On a personal level I think we should now have a new First and Justice minister that just might listen to the people.

The first ministers arrogance knew no bounds last night by refusing to attend for the vote at his own constituency, this is inexcusable.

I think this has damaged his reputation and if the SNP are to continue to be listened to by the public he should resign.
nugnug

theeres allready acusation of vote rigging from the yes side.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?fea...ayer_detailpage&v=kUR-HgAtwtg

im not sure weather this is real footage though.

and t could of just been a mistake.
Big Wullie

Hip Hip Salmond has resigned.

All my dreams coming true now lets hope he takes MacAskill with him.

Ya dancer.
Iain McKie

Thanks in many ways to Alex Salmond Scotland has won the independence debate.

His legacy - at last the British constitution is on the table and change will result.

Change that hopefully will bring about some of the improvements in our justice system which we all want. This is where my focus will be.
Lambchop

I am with you Big Wullie, glad to see him go because I think he has failed to listen to what concerns people and what they want. I hope that issues which concern Scottish citizens will not continue to be ignored now a no vote has been cast as in previous years with Salmonds complacent attitude and MacAskills bullish devil may care approach.
Karen

We are only being listened to " a bit" because the people who were voting yes got out there and frightened the lot of them into a panic to make  vows to the people of Scotland that they would give them more powers.

Those vows are already starting to be broken.

Quote:
The Yes campaign has reported this " We're hearing reports that over 4000 people have joined the SNP, over 1200 have joined the Scottish Greens and over 585 people have joined the SSP within the past 48 hours!


Just remember this love him or hate him Alex Salmond did a lot for this country.

Some of what Alex Salmond DID do for us.

Apart from a vote on Independence - What did Alex Salmond do for us?

Apart from free prescriptions - What did Alex Salmond do for us?

Apart from an opportunity to rid our country of nuclear weapons - What did Alex Salmond do for us?

Apart from Higher Education with no tuition fees - What did Alex Salmond do for us?

Apart from stopping the bedroom tax - What did Alex Salmond do for us?

Apart from care for old people, without them having to sell their homes -What did Alex Salmond do for us?
Apart from speaking out about the poll tax - What did Alex Salmond do for us?

Apart from calling for an arms embargo on Israel - What did Alex Salmond do for us?

Apart from campaigning for climate change legislation - What did Alex Salmond do for us?
Lambchop

Alex Salmond didn't get rid of bedroom tax. Four the SNP MP's didn't even bother to turn up to vote on bedroom tax, that is how concerned Alex Salmond was about bedroom tax. Alex Salmond does seem to have a particular talent though for claiming credit for things he has had nothing to do with and passing the buck for others.
Lambchop

As for the free care for the elderly what is available to the elderly in Scotland is to welcomed however the funding is not sufficient to prevent the elderly having to sell their homes to meet these costs and due to the high cost of care I doubt it will ever be so.
Karen

Quote:
£20m in emergency funds for families and tenants affected by the "bedroom tax", after ministers raided other parts of their budget.


Quote:
The so-called "bedroom tax" is to be effectively scrapped in Scotland after the Coalition Government agreed to give Scottish ministers full powers to compensate affected tenants


I personally know many who were given a refund of bedroom tax payments because of this.

Well lets see how well the No Vote is going to work for Scotland.

Lets see how these magical vows that have been promised will be revoked and what damage will be done now.
Lambchop

Am I talking with Alex Salmond?
Karen

Lambchop wrote:
Am I talking with Alex Salmond?


Is there any need for this?
Lambchop

Karen wrote:
Lambchop wrote:
Am I talking with Alex Salmond?


Is there any need for this?
It was a simple question, no insult intended.
Karen

I am assuming you are totally aware that I am not Mr Salmond.
Iain McKie

I totally agree with Karen.

Alex Salmond will go down in history as one of the best if not the best leader Scotland ever had.

Effectively he has lost the battle and won the war.

Now we have the chance of real constitutional and cultural change from which Scotland will emerge stronger. In addition Labour, Conservative and Liberal will now need to be seen to be acting in the interests of Scotland and not their Westminster bosses.

Yes his administration did not always deliver in justice terms but I will never forget, with all the other three main parties lined up against my daughter Shirley,  how Michael Russell, Alex Neil and Alex Salmond’s SNP stood up to be counted and delivered on their promises.

That others like Big Wullie and Willie Gage still have not obtained  justice is a matter of sadness for me but now that constitutional and cultural change is possible we must work to further their cases and those of the many others in their position. At long last we can have a fundamental shift in power in Scotland to the people and away from the self interest groups which litter our justice system. Be assured however that they will fight to the death to retain their privilege.

This is where my focus and campaigning efforts will continue to concentrate.
Lambchop

I wanted to have a sensible conversation about the topics raised but instead it became a draining rant about the referendum. Karen makes some interesting points but there are a lot of holes to be picked in her statements and I don't have the inclination to do so, its a road to nowhere, tiring and pointless. I am disappointed. So long as SNP and SNP followers fail to listen to and speak with others and think that they can just rant louder and therefore make themselves the "right voice" there will always be a disconnect as peoples very real concerns are not being listened to never mind talked about and addressed. Alex Salmond's current status of wronged leader and that no voters were somehow tricked is childish and disturbing. I was initially proud of his reaction in defeat but now I am ashamed. Whatever I personally think of SNP policies the world is watching Scotland my homeland. If Alex Salmond could find it in himself to grow up that would be fantastic. Thank you very muchly.
Iain McKie

Quote:
Alex Salmond will go down in history as one of the best, if not the best, political leader Scotland has ever had. Effectively, while losing the independence battle, he has won the war.

Not only have he and the other Yes voters delivered the chance of real constitutional and cultural change in Scotland but they have shaken the London-centric Westminster establishment to its incestuous, self-interested, roots..................

I write, however, mainly in a personal capacity following your highlighting Alex Salmond’s years of support for a public inquiry into my daughter Shirley McKie’s case. (Your report, 20 September). Our family will never forget how, with all the other three main parties lined up against her, Michael Russell, Alex Neil and Alex Salmond’s SNP stood up to be counted and delivered on their promises.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/opin...-protect-salmond-legacy-1-3548185
Lambchop

Doesn't say much for Scotland then does it? I can only hope for the future. When our politican's do not bring national shame and disgrace by behaving like a child in a temper tantrum. I think too much of my homeland to throw my lot in with this shower of clowns. I have said my piece. I'm done. Thank you for reading.
Big Wullie

So why the resignation for someone who achieved so much ?

I for one am glad to see the back of the divisive Mr Salmond and hope he takes MacAskill with him.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/a...faction-expelled-party-1980s.html


I also hope he takes the corrupt Lord Carloway too.

However I would like to see decent and honest MSP's like Alex Neill stand for first ministers job.

Why have SNP not delivered an independent enquiry into Lockerbie ?

I really feel for ever single family, of every single victim.

Perhaps a reshuffle might even see the position of the lord advocate vacant.
Iain McKie

Can appreciate your feelings and respect your views Wullie although seeking to support your argument by linking to an establishment tabloid like the Daily Mail surprises me.

What is now occurring is fundamental change something you have spent years of your life fighting for. Change which would never have occurred were it not for Alex Salmond and the SNP – warts and all.

Where I agree with you is that the cosy consensus which has developed between the Justice Secretary and the government on the one hand and the judiciary and Crown office and legal establishment on the other must change if you, Willie Gage and the Lockerbie relatives are ever to achieve justice.

Alex Neil for Justice Secretary now that would be something. Let’s both watch how things develop before any of us rushes to judgement.
Big Wullie

I think Replacing Salmond with a mini me is not the way forward for the SNP or Scotland.

What tabloids would you have us trust or link to then Iain if not the Daily Mail ?

If the truth be known we should not trust any of them.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-29362166

The biggest Majority of the public wanted armed police on the streets MacAskill told Parliament.

He failed to ask any single member of the public.

Corroboration:

Oh lets take this away because Kenny does not like it oh and lets not forget Carloway was rewarded for agreeing with him despite every other High Court judge disagreeing but they still want to press ahead with this.

Oh lets make people go to ECHR because we can just ignore them, oh and lets not forget they have a 10 year backlog.

I voted no to change the arrogance of the SNP and it worked.
Iain McKie

I voted 'yes' to change the arrogance of Westminster and it worked.The question now is how to effect change in our justice system.?
NanaKaren

I had to create a new user name because I got a new laptop after the other one died and I cannot access my log in details.

I also no longer have the email address associated with the log in so it wouldnt let me change the password.  

Anyway back to the topic.

Quote:

The question now is how to effect change in our justice system.?


Over the past few months an amazing thing has happened with people getting involved in political discussions. Scotland is buzzing with people talking about what they want in Scotland like never before.

These talks did not end when the referendum was done. They continue just as avidly as before. The general consensus is everyone wants similar things. We all want a fair and just Scotland in every sense of the word

Before this happened most of us just let politicians get on with things. We didn't realise the power we had until recently.

Politicians are supposed to listen to what the public want.

They have not been doing this but they are now to an extent.

I also believe people are now willing to listen a bit better to all kinds of issues which affect us. I know this because I have spoken with hundreds of people and have watched the interesting conversations on facebook, twitter and news comments.

These discussions people are having are important because it is people who will force politicians to make the changes we so badly need.

Now would be the time to ask MPs what they intend on doing about the judicial system.  Elections are up and coming, politicians want votes.

People need and want answers to their concerns. But to get answers the questions have to be asked.

Perhaps it would be an idea for us to think about what we want to see changed and get all our ideas together with a collective letter being written to those who have the power to change things?

Pressure must be put on politicians to get the changes needed to ensure fairness and justice for all who seek it.

The time is ripe to do this now.
Lambchop

Out of curiosity what is it you believe has changed over the last few weeks Karen and why?
NanaKaren

Lambchop wrote:
Out of curiosity what is it you believe has changed over the last few weeks Karen and why?


I think the referendum made people interested in politics in a way they have never been before.  
People that had no interest in politics before have come to life. It is quite refreshing to see.
They are now vocal about what is going on in this country and elsewhere for that matter.  They are taking a real interest in what is going on.
I have taken part in many discussions online with people, and I have witnessed it in person too.
Iain McKie

Karen makes a lot of sense. Scotland has changed and this is the time for reflection on what we want our justice system to look like in the years ahead.

While we would hope that the existing organisations representing the legal profession,  judiciary and the government would want to reassess their position unfortunately previous experience would tell us this is unlikely. Groups like Justice Scotland while well intentioned comprises of busy practitioners with little time to devote to justice development.

This brings us to ourselves.

With a few honourable exceptions we appear to spend more time in arguing and attacking each other than pursuing logical debate and campaigning for change.

How to change.  That is the question?
Big Wullie

Quote:
Over the past few months an amazing thing has happened with people getting involved in political discussions. Scotland is buzzing with people talking about what they want in Scotland like never before.


Out of curiosity Karen how many were talking about matters within the Justice System or maybe how these could be improved.

In my personal opinion Iain the only way for change within such a corrupt system Hell Bent on preserving the status quo is to replace them.

This was why I voted no, as did my family.

Perhaps Nicola Sturgeon will also it see it this way when she takes office as first minister and she will get rid of MacAskill otherwise we are still doomed.

Justice matters need more protests before our MSP's will start to take notice of what is going on.

Protests are also a way of informing the public of what is going on too.

Daily we read about trials but only what the crown want us to read.

By example when attending the Nat Fraser trial, certain people (Who I will not name for the moment) attended because of the material I provided to this very forum, which was in total contrast to what the papers were writing.

Of course we link to newspaper articles because sometimes this is all we have as our courts regularly keep appeals hidden from our view but this does not mean we believe everything we read.

Certainly with the experiences I have had particularly in the Nat Fraser trial where the court tried to stop me from taking notes I do not believe everything I read in the press regardless of which one.

Justice Scotland:

Along with Iain I am disappointed to say the least in this group which two years ago accepted at a meeting that they should look into the way experts are treated in Scotlands Courts.

Of particular concern was the way Professor Tim Valentine was treated in the Gage case, and Professor Black in the Hainey case.

Two year down the line Justice Scotland are being told there is no funds by our English counterparts.

Perhaps we should have a vote at Justice Scotland at going it alone.
NanaKaren

Quote:

Out of curiosity Karen how many were talking about matters within the Justice System or maybe how these could be improved.


I have spoken to many people, dont know the numbers but they are concerned about miscarriages of justice.
They know things need to change. People now realise change can come from them pushing their elected politicians into action. If the politicians do not act then they won't be voted for again simple as that.  People have been very busy thinking up new ideas to get things done.  Obviously there are other issues people are needing addressed too. But there is room for every issue and to get issues in the spotlight they have to be raised.

People don't know about legal stuff as such. They have been getting their info a lot of the time from media, and as we know media in Scotland (though not just Scotland I know)  is very biased.  Although people do not trust media much and what is happening now is independent news media is being set up.  This is where people will be able to be told what is really happening in Scotland. This will also be where people can be educated on the judicial system.  Perhaps cases can be highlighted. We won't know until we try.

I do know that this project almost tripled what it asked for in a day in a half. So this might very well work and be the way to go. People are excited, I am excited at how well they are making these things happen.  It just might be that this will force mainstream media to make the changes we need.

Quote:

If the aftermath of the Scottish independence referendum has taught us nothing else, it's that something is very wrong with Scotland's media.  In order to take this problem on in any serious way, we need to be ambitious...

What we want to create, is a daily, fully staffed national news programme for Scotland, backed up by a professional team of full time journalists, correspondents, production and technical staff - no half measures, a genuine challenger to your News at Ten, ITN etc.  Not "Scottish news", just "The News", as seen through a Scottish lens.  It's the next step, it needs to happen, and it needs to happen fast.  Scotland is a country, and it deserves to have its own news programme.

The time for thinking small has passed, Scotland needs to think big.  

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/broadcast-news-for-scotland
Big Wullie

I really hope things turn out for you Karen.

I do not see any serious changes being made.

Perhaps you can enlighten us as to who these people are that are pushing for change.

Sturgeon is just a Mini Me of Salmond and should be replaced with someone with different views and policies from Salmond because lets face it He Lost The Referendum.

Had the vote went the other way I would have respected this and got on with it.

Why are the yes and 45 group refusing to accept the biggest majority of the Scottish Public rejected going it alone ?
NanaKaren

Wullie

There is no way on this earth I would know all these people personally.
I follow what they are doing and have been involved in the debates. I have been involved in peaceful protests and it has been amazing.

These people have hope of great changes and they are willing to fight for it.  We are all dealing with what we have right now in a positive way.

Change is already happening.  It will happen a bit at a time and the people are making it happen.

We don't want wars. Seems we can afford war but not to feed our most needy and vulnerable.  Thats neither just nor fair.

The foodbanks at present are recieving a lot of donations in areas's all over Scotland. We all want to see the end of poverty and thats not going to happen quickly so the people will feed the people.

https://www.facebook.com/glasgowsneedy

I am not willing to give up on hope of a better life and neither are the other people. This group of people are growing larger daily because people can see and feel the hope and they know they can do something to help. These people from all walks of life are working together in unity.
Its truly inspiring. Imagine having this kind of support for a cause?  This can happen but we need to keep letting them know what is happening.

My family and I want to live in a fair and just world where people look out for one another.
 
We prefer live with hope over fear.

These huge gatherings all over the place are an ideal place to get campaign leaflets distributed to people.  I believe George's Square is to be a regular thing on a Saturday. There are other locations all over Scotland.
Lambchop

NanaKaren what do you mean people are prepared to fight for it? That is a statement that makes me quite nervous in particular when mentioned in the same comment as George Square given recent events there.
NanaKaren

Lambchop wrote:
NanaKaren what do you mean people are prepared to fight for it? That is a statement that makes me quite nervous in particular when mentioned in the same comment as George Square given recent events there.


I do not mean physically fight. There is more than one way to fight and that is peaceful protest.

We are all aware who caused the trouble in George's Square and that has been all over social media, photos, videos etc.

That has not a thing to do with what I and others are involved with.
Lambchop

Pleased to hear it. I agree with your comments on fairer society for all NanaKaren and I also think that the necessity for foodbanks within the UK (not just Scotland) is a disgraceful state of affairs. I have donated in the past to foodbanks tins mostly and only to locally placed outlets as I find the notion of children being left hungry something that I couldn't ignore. Do you believe that there would be no necessity for foodbanks in Scotland if the country were independent and if so why? Is this part of "what you and other are involved with"?
NanaKaren

We are a very rich country we could afford to feed children and families who need the help. I find it abhorrant that we have foodbanks in this country or anywhere for that matter.  This is a step back in time.  What next? The workhouses?

There should be no neccessity for foodbanks at all. And I believe as do many others that if we had got independence yes we could have rid ourselves of this scourge on society.  But we didn't get it yet so we need to think of ways to deal with this.  Hopefully Scotland will be rid of them soon.  This is something the Scottish Government will  need to work on.

However foodbanks are one thing, and that isnt the topic, though I realise I raised the issue.  I raised it as a means to highlight how people power can achieve things, one at a time.

The topic is about justice in Scotland and how to change what we do not like, want or need in the judicial system.

I raised the issue due to the amount of people who gather in Glasgow and elsewhere, thinking it would be a good place for campaigning leaflets on cases of miscarriage of justice.  It would be a place to start informing people of what is really happening in our judicial system.  Hopefully to gain public support.

It would be an ideal crowd of people to pass out leaflets or even have some people speaking to then about miscarriages of justice.

If people are not made aware that this is still a huge problem then they cannot do anything about it.

We know newspapers and other news media are unwilling to highlight these cases. So people need to do the footwork to be heard.

And with that I am off to feed some kids.
Lambchop

NanaKaren what exactly is your main concern? If you had to name one issue that you believe is causing an injustice in Scotland right now what would it be? Is there one particular miscarriage of justice that you feel drives you to want change for example?
NanaKaren

I do not like any form of injustice.

If people have evidence of innocence then it should be heard in court fully, but at present it is not always being heard or listened to.

Non disclosure is a huge problem.  I will use Patrick Docherty's case as an example.  He has been in prison since 2005 I believe. Statements are still coming out in his case. The Crown admitted that there had been a huge non disclosure issue.  Had all the statements from a certain "witness" been allowed to heard at the trial then I do not believe Pat Docherty would be in prison at present.

I take an interest in many of the cases on this forum.

The non disclosure of testimony/evidence needs to stop.  This is why people need to be told of what really happens in these cases.  A small article in the news does not explain anything much to people who do not perhaps understand what it all means.

I am sure there are other issues that other posters would be able to discuss and try to come up with ideas to ensure fairness.

What are your concerns regarding injustice? How do you think things could be changed?
Lambchop

I see. I am not ignoring you NanaKaren I have something to finish, I will be back to answer asap.
NanaKaren

I need to run out anyway. I have a few things to do.
Lambchop

NanaKaren that makes sense to me and I agree, of course all evidence should be disclosed. Any miscarriage of justice should be of concern to every citizen living in Scotland. Unfortunately many people do not pay attention to issues of concern until they become a victim of the legal system. Are you involved in a group that campaigns for this on the street? I originally commented on this site as I noticed that stop and search in Scotland had been mentioned. While I support the commissions decision to challenge the Scottish Government on this policy I do not believe they have taken matters far enough. Police Scotland's code of conduct needs to be revised in relation to legislative searches as well as the removal of non-legislative searches. On a personal note I find the arming of Police Scotland Officers on routine calls completely unnecessary and I worry that it is a move that could lead to a gun culture on our streets that Scotland has never experienced before. SNP need to learn to balance listening to the Police with listening to the human rights commission which is something so far SNP have failed to do. What I cannot understand is why some people believe that if Scotland becomes an independent country everything will be better?
Lambchop

I have an open mind though!
NanaKaren

I agree we should not have police armed with guns to walk the beat. I agree with your reasons also.

Stop and search should also be looked at.

People do not generally take notice of anything to do with the judicial process unless it affects them as you say. Or unless it is some "horror" story then everyone has an opinion.

However, I do believe if people are told what is what in a case then bit by bit this can get them interested in doing something, or writing letters etc.  Prisoners who claim injustice need to be seen as more than prison numbers in my opinion.  Human interest is good at getting support.

I think perhaps you should look up why people still want independence. There is lots of info online about this. I don't believe this is the thread to talk about this.

No I am not a member of any group regarding injustice. I have a group of contacts, friends and people who are either suffering injustice or their families.
What are your concerns regarding injustice? How do you think things could be changed?

What do you think people should do to raise awareness of injustice?
Lambchop

I completely and totally agree. It is not the thread to discuss a yes or no vote, Alex Salmond, 45%, 55%, make allegations about what other people might want or think, it was an opportunity to discuss a real concern and find out what people thought about it which was why I expressed my disappointment when it became about the referendum instead of the subject itself as the subject became buried in political hype, which continued after the referendum was over. I hope if anyone else read the subject matter and wanted to comment or speak up that they weren't put off from doing so by reading the other comments but I suspect they would have been. A lost opportunity to hear from others and a pity.
Lambchop

As for what concerns me I have said what concerns me on several times now.
Big Wullie

Quote:
SNP need to learn to balance listening to the Police with listening to the human rights commission which is something so far SNP have failed to do. What I cannot understand is why some people believe that if Scotland becomes an independent country everything will be better?


From where I am sitting Lambchop I do not ever see the present government listening to the people.

If they do not listen to every High Court Judge bar one then they will certainly not listen to you or me.

It is OK to want change and a different thing to get change.

I see no real changes with Nicola Sturgeon taking over and carrying on with Salmonds policies.

I agree with you entirely about things being better in an independent Scotland, I just thought they would act more oppressively and get more pig headed and more arrogant.

In my humble opinion the people of Scotland woke up to the arrogance of Salmond and now he is history.

It is time they woke up to Miscarriages of Justice and all the SCCRC referrals Carloway is rejecting.
Lambchop

While I initially just wanted to talk about the issues raised without involving personal opinions on politics (I don't think it was helpful in the sense of finding out what other peoples experiences have been) we seem to have gone past that point now, sadly as others would not allow such a thing to happen. What saddens me most is that there was a chance here maybe to find out to let people talk and share without fear of being judged or criticised god knows for some people they have had enough of that. The victims of the Scottish Legal System are out there but they are scattered and without voice, what on earth will politicians do when this changes? One day it will - these people are out there they are just silent for now but if you trawl online the comments of anger are there. How do you set about repairing so many years of neglect and i am sorry to say it but outright abuse?  Not one fig seems to be given by some as to what damage has been caused to the individual as the victims voices are drowned out by hype, the real issues clouded by raising multiple issues and giving evasive answers or answering a direct question with an accusing question until the root cause is lost by fudging the issues raised.
Iain McKie

Difficult to discuss injustice without reference to politics and political philosophy and policy because in the final analysis only the politicians have the power to challenge the vested interests. The trouble is  this has not been done.

My commitment to independence was based on a belief that this was the only way to get real change in our justice system.  Having missed that opportunity we must make the best of what we have.

I have also said that unless politicians break away from Westminster and establish minds of their own with Scotland’s interests at heart then real change will not take place. Change is still possible but only under a government whose focus is Scotland and not London.

Interesting article in today’s Scotsman which references a vote of ‘no confidence’ in our Justice Secretary. I judge this particular action as a cynical move however by politicians seeking to make some short term political gain and who have shown absolutely no inclination to propose constructive changes in our justice system.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/poli...st-resign-over-policing-1-3564479

I believe that when  Nicola Sturgeon takes over a new Justice Secretary will be appointed and that some of the misguided policies like the removal of corroboration will be sidelined. I hope that the referendum has shaken all the parties to their roots because I really believe that a majority of Scots are not willing to accept the crumbs off the Westminster table.

It is absolutely right to say however that the vast majority of people suffering injustice are lone voices in a wilderness of disinterest. I believe we can give them a voice but also work to change the political realties that condemn them to that wilderness.
NanaKaren

Tell the Smith Commission your views on the powers that should be devolved to Scotland

A few things to think about when writing your email:
What powers do you think should be devolved to Scotland? Why?
How would these powers affect you?
How far do the advantages outweigh the disadvantages?
What do you think about the way power is currently divided between Westminster and Scotland?

Please be polite - the Commission is more likely to consider clear and polite contributions.


https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/p...nd-devolution-commission?js=false
Lambchop

I believe through personal experience that SNP would rather keep victims quiet, cowed if possible, to save face and look/sound important and knowledgeable. Police now will not be carrying firearms on routine calls. We are not an independent country. It is a common sense move on an issue which should never have been necessary to raise. Very few people will be daft enough to believe that Scotland must be independent for citizens to receive reasonable treatment and if that is the case then that is highly disturbing indeed.
david

Here is a startling stat - taken from the cases presented on the SCCRC's website

Since 2007, the SCCRC have referred aprox 33 cases to the Appeal Court relating to conviction. There is no available Judgements relating to over 40 percent of these cases. According to the SCCRC Website.


Hopefully this can be changed. All SCCRC referrals are in the public's interest.
Lambchop

To be able to understand you need to have been able to understand the loss. To be able to understand the loss you need to able to understand the loss of personal safety and liberty through no fault of your own actions. If you are in this unfortunate position but live close to the border between Scotland and England the you will understand that safety from tyranny was literally minutes away. If you have been in this position then you will understand that no person in their right mind will ever support SNP. The right to safety should apply to every human living being, not just the majority, in case the public objects on mass and creates a public show.  It is called morals, something SNP has no understanding or tolerence of.  I understand what it is to live in fear and terror unable to defend myself or my children, having committed no crime against man nor beast (nor having the capacity to do so) if you are reading this and can understand please speak up. Don't be intimidated into silence. Please, speak. Even if you are not sure if this applys to you if you were frightened and helpless for whatever reason then say so. You don't have to say why. I won't be. Not on here.
Lambchop

I wasn't going to say anything else on the subject at all. What changed my mind was catching a train home, when I was faced with a menacing male passenger. I didn't complain, nor would I have. Other passengers on the train did. So they ticket conductor was faced with a difficult choice phone the police against the victims wishes or respect my wishes. So the police were called as he felt in this case he could not ignore what he was witnessing, if only he knew!! I fled in fear of my personal safety because of what I have already learned about Scots law. I was not willing to be a sacrifice for the greater good, I have been there and done that already once in a lifetime is enough for anyone. .
Lambchop

That was badly worded. I was the victim. I dislike the word but sometimes as females we are weaker as men generally speaking are physically stronger. If you need help PM me I will do what I can to help. SNP YOU DISGUST ME.
Iain McKie

I am reading this ‘Lambchop’ but don’t understand. But I am trying to.

The problem is while your obvious disgust of all things SNP is clear I am not clear just where your arguments are taking us.

Your fear does sound very real however and that is awful. What steps have you taken or do you suggest which would assist you in achieving some sort of peace or satisfaction.

As Karen and others have stated all we can do in a democratic society is campaign through any legitimate sources available to us to effect change.

The Smith Commission and Bonhomy consultations appear to give us that opportunity although I continue to be sceptical that the establishment will only reluctantly challenge the status quo and is hell bent on retaining total power.
Lambchop

Lambchop was chosen as a reference to "Lamb to the slaughter" I am only too painfully aware of how SNP treats the most vulnerable members of our society and it disgusts me. I am not trying to lead anyone anywhere. I am simply stating facts, based on what I have learned through experience. Why do I still live in Scotland? Because I am Scottish, why should I let some prick or a whole bunch of them chase me and my offspring out because our plight might have upset others even thought I know we would have been safe in England? Why should Scottish women hide in a shelter cowering with their weans for fear of abusive men and abusive laws? Why should ANYONE have to do that? I will fight for the women and children that SNP buried because they are too battered to fight for themselves. Give me the strength to accept what I cannot change. Give me the strength to change what I cannot accept. SNP I am coming after you, for all that I am, for all that I can do, I am not a quitter, I would not be alive right now if I was.
Big Wullie

Quote:
I am reading this ‘Lambchop’ but don’t understand. But I am trying to.


Lambchop, Like Iain I am finding it increasingly difficult to understand your posts.

Why not give us a brief synopsis of the case you are talking about or even PM me the name so we can understand where you are coming from.

I am afraid your posts are doomed to failure if people cannot understand exactly where you are coming from.
Lambchop

I wasn't trying to be understood. I went past that point when I got angry, then I just vented my anger over how I really felt. It has prompted me to do something about it though, legally, peacefully and through the correct channels. It could take years to put this right, maybe it will never be so in my  lifetime but it won't put me off trying. Presently there is no name to give, perhaps that is something I can change.

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Sincere thanks to all those who have supported Shirley and challenged miscarriages of justice on this forum.