Alex Salmond and the Alba Party

2

Comments

  • Ethne AlbaEthne Alba Shipmate
    That last paragraph right there.
  • ForthviewForthview Shipmate
    Salmond did admit to inappropriate behaviour, but not to behaviour of a criminal nature.
    In law he is presumed innocent until found guilty. He was not found guilty in a court of law which is supposed to uphold justice. While we may not trust what is considered to be 'justice' we can only challenge it legally if we have some other information which would prove that there has been a miscarriage of justice.
    As I understand it the complainants have not been told that they are liars who simply imagined things or were out to get Salmond for some nefarious purpose, but that they have not proved their case to the satisfaction of the jury. Until they can do so Mr Salmond must be regarded as innocent.
  • Salmond is innocent of criminal offences.

    He has, however, admitted to inappropriate unwanted sexual advances. That's not criminal, but it's also not right and the women concerned were entirely right to complain. That's totally unacceptable behaviour for someone in a position of authority, or anyone else.
  • DafydDafyd Shipmate
    One offense, sexual assault with intent to rape, was found not proven.

    Avoiding any speculation on the specific case of Mr Salmond:

    As I understand it, a not proven verdict means that the jury thinks the accused is probably guilty but can't be certain on the evidence.
    On English law a verdict of not guilty means only that the prosecution failed to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt. There's no moral requirement on a private individual to regard the acquitted as innocent beyond reasonable doubt. It just means the case is not so clear as to justify state sanctions. I'm not sure how the option of not proven in Scotland affects that: my understanding is not very substantially.

    Sexual assault is by the nature of the case notoriously difficult to prove beyond reasonable doubt.
  • DoublethinkDoublethink Shipmate, Purgatory Host
    What I found frustrating, was my reading of the various bits of information was that Nicola Sturgeon did try to do the right thing. She didn’t sit on the complaints and try to make them disappear, she didn’t interfere with the civil service investigation and she didn’t interfere with the police investigation. Then she appears to have been pilloried for that.
  • What I found frustrating, was my reading of the various bits of information was that Nicola Sturgeon did try to do the right thing. She didn’t sit on the complaints and try to make them disappear, she didn’t interfere with the civil service investigation and she didn’t interfere with the police investigation. Then she appears to have been pilloried for that.

    The opposition have failed to make anything substantive stick so going all-out on this was their last gasp before the elections, where they're likely to get trounced. It's not that Sturgeon has done a great job or that everything is rosy, but folk can look down south, or across the North Channel, and decide there are worse things than a moderate government that makes a few mistakes but is generally honest and well-intentioned. Neither Sarwar, Rennie nor whoever is in charge of the English nationalists these days (Johnson can't remember either) looks remotely heavyweight enough to be First Minister.
  • Dafyd wrote: »
    As I understand it, a not proven verdict means that the jury thinks the accused is probably guilty but can't be certain on the evidence.
    The "not proven" verdict is an oddity of Scottish legal system. It means that the prosecution failed to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. "Not guilty" also means that the prosecution failed to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Any difference between the two verdicts is so small that I don't know what it is, and juries rarely know what the difference is. A lot of what juries think they should be doing is 'learnt' (if that's the right word) from film and TV drama, almost always set in the US or other parts of the UK where there isn't a 'not proven' verdict, the few minutes of information provided to the jury by the judge or sheriff when they're called and/or before retiring to deliberate is insufficient to properly inform the jury what the 'not proven' verdict actually means. There has been discussion reported on and off in the media for years about removing the 'not proven' verdict option, and having a simpler guilty/not guilty option.
  • KwesiKwesi Shipmate
    Even if a case is 'not proven' there remains the principle of innocent until proved guilty.
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    Kwesi wrote: »
    Even if a case is 'not proven' there remains the principle of innocent until proved guilty.

    Indeed. But he has admitted to inappropriate behaviour - has he apologised for it?
  • KwesiKwesi Shipmate
    Arethosemyfeet: Neither Sarwar, Rennie nor whoever is in charge of the English nationalists these days (Johnson can't remember either) looks remotely heavyweight enough to be First Minister.

    You are probably correct, though some would include Sturgeon, herself, in the mix. The fact is that the quality of MSPs is embarrassingly poor, though the comparison with Westminster MPs and ministers has much diminished due to the diminution in quality of the latter. Perhaps the Anarchists have been proved right: "Don't vote, it only encourages them!"
  • ForthviewForthview Shipmate
    He has said that he has been found not guilty and that it is time to move on.
    Meantime with the defection of Kenny Macaskill MP from SNP to Alba it means that the new party has already a seat in Westminster.
    Whether it will gain any seats in the Scottish Parliament will not be seen until after 6th May.
    If they don't gain any seats surely that will be the end of Salmond's political career ?
  • Ethne AlbaEthne Alba Shipmate
    Inappropriate behaviour admitted to.

    What part of that sentence is unclear?

  • Mr Salmond's Alba party has just gained it's second sitting MSP.
  • DafydDafyd Shipmate
    edited March 28
    Kwesi wrote: »
    Even if a case is 'not proven' there remains the principle of innocent until proved guilty.
    The principle of innocent until proven guilty is a legal principle that applies to the state. (Even then the police arrest people who haven't yet been found guilty of the crime on suspicion of which they're arrested.)
    It has no bearing on the private judgement of individuals. We are it is true supposed to judge with charity: that charity should equally incline us to the view that women who make accusations of rape are innocent of doing so falsely.
  • KwesiKwesi Shipmate
    Dafyd: We are in (sic) is true supposed to judge with charity: that charity should equally incline us to the view that women who make accusations of rape are innocent of doing so falsely.

    A principle that comes perilously closes to guilt by accusation, though I'm sure you don't intend it to, Dafyd.

    I would have thought that judgement with charity requires a fair trial.

    If there was any injustice, it was due to the incompetence of those handling the process, though apologies or resignations are not anticipated.
  • Forthview wrote: »
    He has said that he has been found not guilty and that it is time to move on.
    He has been found not guilty of any criminal offense. He has admitted making unwanted sexual advances towards several women. If he feels he's got away with it, and can move on, then that's almost legitimising sexual assault. Do you really want to say that sexual assault is OK, that people can just move on, providing that assault doesn't reach the severity and the level of proof needed for criminal conviction?
  • Sleazeball.
  • ForthviewForthview Shipmate
    I most certainly do not want to say that sexual assault is okay. However I don't think that I am the only one to say that if everyone who made some sort of unwanted sexual advance were to be removed from office there would be few left to do anything.
    I would certainly not vote for Mr Salmond and I think that the best way for him to move on would be to move right away, but I repeat that he has not be found guilty of any crime and that therefore there should be a presumption of innocence until anything criminal can be proven in a court of law.
  • I really wish the technical, legal concept of the presumption of innocence would stay in the criminal court where it belongs. I would suggest that if one insists on applying a legal standard in matters other than criminal prosecution it should be the civil standard of "balance of probability".
  • LouiseLouise Epiphanies Host
    He's a sexist whose own advocate was caught on tape describing him as a 'sex-pest' and who has admitted inappropriate behaviour to women at their work whose boss he effectively was. The kind of people who want the behaviour he and his own defence have actually admitted to now be ignored are part of enabling the same toxic sexist culture to continue.
  • Forthview wrote: »
    I most certainly do not want to say that sexual assault is okay. However I don't think that I am the only one to say that if everyone who made some sort of unwanted sexual advance were to be removed from office there would be few left to do anything.


    Excellent, let’s go! Seriously - why should unwanted sexual advances be something people* just have to put up with at work? Perhaps if all those who made such advances had to leave their jobs, we could employ other people who are equally skilled, but not as pervy. Win-win, I reckon.

    *Usually women, let’s face it.
  • Forthview wrote: »
    I most certainly do not want to say that sexual assault is okay. However I don't think that I am the only one to say that if everyone who made some sort of unwanted sexual advance were to be removed from office there would be few left to do anything.

    Indeed, but there is a difference between an unwanted sexual advance from an equal which a woman can refuse with impunity, and an unwanted sexual advance from someone with authority over you, which a woman has to smilingly evade or invent a jealous boyfriend or a headache to evade, or whatever, for fear that outright refusal will carry a penalty in terms of her career / income / ability to pay her mortgage.

    Salmond has admitted making unwanted sexual advances towards several women. I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt that he didn't appreciate at the time just how unwelcome those advances were, because the women concerned probably felt the potential cost of telling him to piss off was just too great.

    I suspect his ego has taken a massive hit. He's probably thought of himself as a bit of a charmer, and to discover that the women concerned were actually disgusted rather than charmed by him has probably come as a shock. He may well feel betrayed.

    But women are really fed up of having manage men's unwanted advances as part of having a successful career. It's a far bigger deal for us than some men seem to understand.



  • DafydDafyd Shipmate
    Kwesi wrote: »
    Dafyd: We are in (sic) is true supposed to judge with charity: that charity should equally incline us to the view that women who make accusations of rape are innocent of doing so falsely.
    A principle that comes perilously closes to guilt by accusation, though I'm sure you don't intend it to
    I think if you're going to tag a typing error with a (sic), it behoves you not to then type 'closes to guilt' for 'close to guilt'. Just saying.

    As Arethosemyfeet says, the appropriate standard of judgement is balance of probability without bias towards accused or accused. Your principle comes perilously close to allowing all but the most blatant sexual harassment with impunity, "though I'm sure you don't intend it to".

    If a woman refused to be in a room alone with such a man, would she be acting unreasonably? I don't think so.

  • AnselminaAnselmina Shipmate
    Boogie wrote: »
    Kwesi wrote: »
    Even if a case is 'not proven' there remains the principle of innocent until proved guilty.

    Indeed. But he has admitted to inappropriate behaviour - has he apologised for it?

    He has complained about being victimized himself - poor little blossom - and made the object of a nasty conspiracy to defame him by his opponents; and now considers himself completely the right person to head up a political party and potentially engage with Scottish Government again. So I'm guessing he feels his wandering hands routine leaves him nothing to feel sorry for. I remember when the evidence was in the news thinking 'he sounds like the office grope you get - or used to get - when I started out in work; old creepy-hands always touching up the laydeez, with a "friendly" pat here, or a massaging palm there, and a fatherly reassuring grin just to remind you that you were enjoying this as much as he was, right? Nasty but never quite enough for a proper complaint, if you wanted to keep your job or your friends.
  • Ethne AlbaEthne Alba Shipmate
    This
  • I really wish the technical, legal concept of the presumption of innocence would stay in the criminal court where it belongs. I would suggest that if one insists on applying a legal standard in matters other than criminal prosecution it should be the civil standard of "balance of probability".

    Gosh, that's a good point.
  • Just reading Craig Murray's blog, whose party, Action for Independence, have stood all candidates down, after the Alba announcement. As far as I can decipher, Murray sees Sturgeon as brittle on independence, and likely to cave in, whereas presumably Salmond is less brittle. Quote, "Sturgeon has no real intention of risking her career and position by having a real tilt at independence".

    I don't really understand a lot of this, and I'm puzzled by this view of Sturgeon as soft on independence. Where does this argument come from?

    Sorry, no, link, Murray is at www.craigmurray.org.uk
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    "In March 2020, after nine days of evidence at the high court, Salmond was cleared of 14 charges – an attempted rape, one intent to rape, 11 sexual assaults and two indecent assaults, against 10 women. One charge was dropped by the crown; the jury acquitted Salmond of all the others on majority verdicts."

    Riiiight. Why aren't the ten women being tried for perjury?
  • Because they didn't commit perjury?
  • ForthviewForthview Shipmate
    We have no proof that they committed perjury but we also do not have enough proof to state that Alec Salmond committed the acts which he was accused of, at least according to a jury of his peers.
    Do we have any proof that the jury was made up of Alec Salmond supporters ?

  • I don't really understand a lot of this, and I'm puzzled by this view of Sturgeon as soft on independence. Where does this argument come from?

    Misogyny, mostly. And from people who think what happened in Catalonia was a good example rather than a horrible warning. Sturgeon would rather independence happen smoothly and take another decade; the hardliners want a UDI tomorrow even if it means fighting on the streets and people going hungry.
  • Forthview wrote: »
    We have no proof that they committed perjury but we also do not have enough proof to state that Alec Salmond committed the acts which he was accused of, at least according to a jury of his peers.
    Do we have any proof that the jury was made up of Alec Salmond supporters ?
    We do not need proof, that's for a court of law. Several women stood up in court and described what happened to them, Salmond presented an alternative account, and the jury had sufficient doubts that they couldn't convict him. Getting into an argument about perjury is to imply that these events didn't happen just because the jury had some doubts about the details. The logic of that is that all witnesses lie when they describe what they know, unless the jury believes them. Getting women who have been subject to sexual assault to press charges and testify is hard enough as it is, without everything they say being described as a lie simply because when there is usually no other evidence it's easier for the defence to sow reasonable doubt than it is for the prosecution to prove guilt. That's just inviting scumbag men to continue abusing women safe in the knowledge that their victims won't speak up and if they do won't be believed.

    But, we have Salmond's own words, he's admitted to acting inappropriately towards several women. Those admissions weren't enough to convict him of any crime, they should be enough for everyone to recognise him as a sexual predator. No decent human being should be making excuses for those acts, nor pretend they didn't happen or didn't seriously affect the victims. The only way anyone could reasonably support his new political venture has to do so by affirming his political aims while repudiating his attitude towards women - if that's possible - or else be seen as supporting the abuse of women.

  • I don't really understand a lot of this, and I'm puzzled by this view of Sturgeon as soft on independence. Where does this argument come from?

    Misogyny, mostly. And from people who think what happened in Catalonia was a good example rather than a horrible warning. Sturgeon would rather independence happen smoothly and take another decade; the hardliners want a UDI tomorrow even if it means fighting on the streets and people going hungry.

    Yes, some of the comments on Murray's blog are hard-line, as if Scotland is like Ireland. Obviously not. I think also the Salmondites are negative about "identity politics". I notice Murray made a sarcastic reference to Redmond, presumably the Irish politician, who was a moderate. No Easter Rising in Edinburgh, methinks.
  • LouiseLouise Epiphanies Host

    Craig Murray outed Swedish sexual assault complainers on TV over Assange and is awaiting sentencing after being found guilty of contempt of court for trying to do similar online to the complainers in the Salmond case, and we have folk here wondering why he's attacking Nicola?

    I mean I understand misogynists reading his stuff and giving it credence but anyone who opposes misogyny or calls themselves a feminist needs to leave that stuff well alone and ask themselves some questions on how they came to be reading him and missed women warning them about him?

  • ForthviewForthview Shipmate
    Alan C tells us that we do not need any proof that's for a court of law.
    There is no reason for us to suppose that the women complainants committed perjury.
    Should we believe that Salmond committed perjury ?
    Do we make ourselves the judge and jury simply because we know who we want to believe ?

    We may believe that we believe one story rather than the other but in a court of law whose account did the jury believe on the balance of probabilities was the one to which they would give more credence ?

    Was the jury rigged ? Do we have any proof of this ?
    Was the jury made up of simpleminded people who didn't know what they were doing ?

    I am sure that each one of us will have our own opinions but this matter was tested in a court of law and the jury came to its conclusion. It is the way the law works.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    edited March 28
    We don't have to assume anyone committed perjury. The things Salmond has admitted to are bad enough. Did you even read Alan's second paragraph?
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited March 28
    Because they didn't commit perjury?

    Ah hah! The man's a piece of shit.
  • Forthview wrote: »
    Alan C tells us that we do not need any proof that's for a court of law.
    There is no reason for us to suppose that the women complainants committed perjury.
    Should we believe that Salmond committed perjury ?
    Do we make ourselves the judge and jury simply because we know who we want to believe ?

    We may believe that we believe one story rather than the other but in a court of law whose account did the jury believe on the balance of probabilities was the one to which they would give more credence ?

    Was the jury rigged ? Do we have any proof of this ?
    Was the jury made up of simpleminded people who didn't know what they were doing ?

    I am sure that each one of us will have our own opinions but this matter was tested in a court of law and the jury came to its conclusion. It is the way the law works.

    The conclusion they came to was that there was insufficient evidence to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. We can't impute anything from that about who they believed. I suspect (but don't know for sure) that the jury made the correct decisions based on the evidence they had available; that's not the same as saying that Salmond is actually innocent of the things of which he was accused.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    The outcome of the Salmond case establishes one thing only: that the jury was not satisfied that the prosecution had shown beyond reasonable doubt that he had committed the offences alleged.

    It says nothing at all about the truthfulness of evidence given by any individual in the case. Speculation about that either positively or negatively puts the Ship at risk of defamation proceedings, as does speculation about whether ‘he really did it or not’.

    There’s perfectly reasonable discussion to be had about Salmond and the Alba party without trespassing on those questions, and provided shipmates can exercise self-discipline on that the thread can remain open.

    BroJames
    Purgatory Host
  • DafydDafyd Shipmate
    edited March 28
    Forthview wrote: »
    We may believe that we believe one story rather than the other but in a court of law whose account did the jury believe on the balance of probabilities was the one to which they would give more credence ?
    It was a criminal trial. The criterion was not balance of probabilities: it was beyond reasonable doubt. That can mean anything from the jury was completely convinced Salmond is innocent to they believe he's probably guilty but can't be quite sure. (I'll add also that it was a majority verdict, which I believe means at least some jurors dissented.)

    Quite rightly the standard of proof required to send a man to prison is considerably higher than the standard of evidence required for a woman to reasonably object to being alone in a room with him.
  • North East QuineNorth East Quine Shipmate
    edited March 28
    I think that with low-level sexual harassment between a senior person and a subordinate it is perfectly possible for two people to hold two different views.

    The man thinks he is being gallant / charming / perhaps a bit flirty.

    The woman thinks he is being slimy / sleazy / a sex pest, but, because he's her boss she puts up with it. She doesn't want to risk losing her job in the next restructuring, she doesn't want to miss out on the next promotion. She wants to be able to pay her bills. She avoids being alone with him, she bitches about him to her colleagues in the ladies, but she doesn't complain to him.

    An analogy - how many men have laughed at a joke their boss told, even though they've heard it before or it's not funny, or have avoided thrashing their boss at golf, or have nodded and smiled along to some self-aggrandizing story told by the boss, even whilst mentally thinking "what an arsehole!" And this can lull a boss into a false belief that he is witty, or a good golfer, or that his staff admire him.

    Similarly, I think a woman who doesn't want to risk her livelihood by telling a "handsy" boss to keep his hands to himself can lull a boss into a false sense that the woman is actually flattered by his attentions.

    My intuition is that this is what has happened here. Salmond, First Minister of Scotland, was starting to see himself as the white knight rescuing Scotland from Westminster, surrounded by admiring damsels who would be flattered to be noticed by him.

  • I'm going to draw attention to @BroJames host post above.

    Please read it before posting.

    Doc Tor
    SoF admin
  • RuthRuth Shipmate
    Forthview wrote: »
    I most certainly do not want to say that sexual assault is okay. However I don't think that I am the only one to say that if everyone who made some sort of unwanted sexual advance were to be removed from office there would be few left to do anything.

    There would be plenty of people remaining who know better than to make sexual advances on anyone in the course of their work. (Maybe more women than men, and if it left more women in power than men, so much the better.) Removing from office everyone who hasn't figured out the work environment is not the place to go looking for sexual relationships, especially with subordinates, would probably remove a lot of power-hungry narcissists, and that could only be a good thing.
  • RicardusRicardus Shipmate
    edited March 28
    Mr Salmond says he wants his party to create a supermajority for independence by standing in the regional lists, and advising people to give their regional vote to him and their constituency vote to the SNP.

    Am I right in thinking that this is basically shenanigans to manipulate the mixed-member system?

    That is: the mixed-member system is supposed to guarantee that if a party is over-represented at constituency level, its votes at regional level are (in effect) under-weighted to counteract this, so that you end up with proportional representation. However, there is a way of getting round this if your electorate votes for one party at constituency level and a different but related one at regional level - the over-representation of one won't be counteracted by any under-weighting of the other.

    So if you vote SNP for both constituency and region, and the SNP has too many constituencies due to FPTP, then it will get fewer regional MSPs than its share of the regional vote 'deserves'. But if you vote SNP for constituency and Alba for regional, and Alba has no constituency MSPs, then the SNP will keep hold of its 'excess' constituency MSPs, but Alba's regional MSPs will be awarded proportionally, without any deduction to counteract the SNP excess (because, obviously, they are different parties).

    Thus SNP-Alba gets you more pro-independence MSPs than SNP by itself.

    If I am right, then this is monumentally stupid, because there is no point creating an artificial majority for independence in Holyrood if there is no actual majority for independence among the general public - all you'll end up doing is holding another referendum and losing it.

    (Plus, the proportionality of the Scottish Parliament is supposed to be a model for Why Westminster Is Terrible. If it turns out that it can be manipulated in this way, then it becomes a model for Why Westminster Isn't So Bad After All.)
  • I think that with low-level sexual harassment between a senior person and a subordinate it is perfectly possible for two people to hold two different views.

    The man thinks he is being gallant / charming / perhaps a bit flirty.

    The woman thinks he is being slimy / sleazy / a sex pest, but, because he's her boss she puts up with it. She doesn't want to risk losing her job in the next restructuring, she doesn't want to miss out on the next promotion. She wants to be able to pay her bills. She avoids being alone with him, she bitches about him to her colleagues in the ladies, but she doesn't complain to him.

    An analogy - how many men have laughed at a joke their boss told, even though they've heard it before or it's not funny, or have avoided thrashing their boss at golf, or have nodded and smiled along to some self-aggrandizing story told by the boss, even whilst mentally thinking "what an arsehole!" And this can lull a boss into a false belief that he is witty, or a good golfer, or that his staff admire him.

    Similarly, I think a woman who doesn't want to risk her livelihood by telling a "handsy" boss to keep his hands to himself can lull a boss into a false sense that the woman is actually flattered by his attentions.
    Quite often that power dynamic basically makes the actions of the boss a form of bullying. Adding sexual overtures makes the bullying worse.

    Bullying is, of course, a breach of the ministerial code. How many of the supporters of Salmond and the Alba Party were calling for Sturgeon to resign over what they saw as breaking the ministerial code (even after an independent inquiry found that she hadn't done so)? If they were to be consistent they should be calling for Salmond to face the consequences of breaking the ministerial code in his bullying, a well as calling for other ministers to resign for bullying and other breaches of the ministerial code (even if those are in a different government).
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    As above. Seriously @Forthview, were you to work for someone who thought punching you in the face was an acceptable social interaction, would you be be going 'Yeah, the odd black eye/broken nose - where's the harm?'

    Violation of one's personal safety in the workspace by someone with more power than you? You really can't see how that is a Bad Thing?
  • Ruth wrote: »
    Forthview wrote: »
    I most certainly do not want to say that sexual assault is okay. However I don't think that I am the only one to say that if everyone who made some sort of unwanted sexual advance were to be removed from office there would be few left to do anything.

    There would be plenty of people remaining who know better than to make sexual advances on anyone in the course of their work. (Maybe more women than men, and if it left more women in power than men, so much the better.) Removing from office everyone who hasn't figured out the work environment is not the place to go looking for sexual relationships, especially with subordinates, would probably remove a lot of power-hungry narcissists, and that could only be a good thing.
    The only reason I can see for saying that those who make unwanted sexual advances shouldn't be removed from public office is because you believe sexual predators represent you better than people who hold the same political opinions but don't make unwanted sexual advances. It's a sad indictment of our societies that known sexual predators are credible candidates for election, let alone that some of them get elected to high office. That covers more than just Salmond and Scottish politics.
  • Ricardus wrote: »
    Mr Salmond says he wants his party to create a supermajority for independence by standing in the regional lists, and advising people to give their regional vote to him and their constituency vote to the SNP.

    Am I right in thinking that this is basically shenanigans to manipulate the mixed-member system?

    That is: the mixed-member system is supposed to guarantee that if a party is over-represented at constituency level, its votes at regional level are (in effect) under-weighted to counteract this, so that you end up with proportional representation. However, there is a way of getting round this if your electorate votes for one party at constituency level and a different but related one at regional level - the over-representation of one won't be counteracted by any under-weighting of the other.

    So if you vote SNP for both constituency and region, and the SNP has too many constituencies due to FPTP, then it will get fewer regional MSPs than its share of the regional vote 'deserves'. But if you vote SNP for constituency and Alba for regional, and Alba has no constituency MSPs, then the SNP will keep hold of its 'excess' constituency MSPs, but Alba's regional MSPs will be awarded proportionally, without any deduction to counteract the SNP excess (because, obviously, they are different parties).

    Thus SNP-Alba gets you more pro-independence MSPs than SNP by itself.

    If I am right, then this is monumentally stupid, because there is no point creating an artificial majority for independence in Holyrood if there is no actual majority for independence among the general public - all you'll end up doing is holding another referendum and losing it.

    (Plus, the proportionality of the Scottish Parliament is supposed to be a model for Why Westminster Is Terrible. If it turns out that it can be manipulated in this way, then it becomes a model for Why Westminster Isn't So Bad After All.)
    That would be a problem if the Alba Party and the SNP were presenting an identical set of policies. I've yet to see anything from Alba to suggest they have any policies other than Independence - but, if they come up with stuff that are backward steps for trans-rights and other social justice issues I wouldn't be surprised given the mob they've gathered together.

    If the only issue you're considering is Independence vs Unionism then that puts the Greens and SNP as identical, which would be absurd, and even more absurd saying there's no difference between Labour, Conservative and LibDem.

    If Alba and SNP are clearly distinct in policies other than independence then there's no problem with them standing in the regions, any more than the Greens standing in the regions and a few constituencies. There is room for some tactical voting in the Scottish system, both the same forms of tactical voting for constituencies as under the Westminster system and some different forms of tactical voting in the regional elections. I can't think of any form of voting which doesn't have some form of tactical voting possible.
  • North East QuineNorth East Quine Shipmate
    edited March 28
    Ricardus wrote: »
    Mr Salmond says he wants his party to create a supermajority for independence by standing in the regional lists, and advising people to give their regional vote to him and their constituency vote to the SNP.

    Am I right in thinking that this is basically shenanigans to manipulate the mixed-member system?

    That is: the mixed-member system is supposed to guarantee that if a party is over-represented at constituency level, its votes at regional level are (in effect) under-weighted to counteract this, so that you end up with proportional representation. However, there is a way of getting round this if your electorate votes for one party at constituency level and a different but related one at regional level - the over-representation of one won't be counteracted by any under-weighting of the other.

    So if you vote SNP for both constituency and region, and the SNP has too many constituencies due to FPTP, then it will get fewer regional MSPs than its share of the regional vote 'deserves'. But if you vote SNP for constituency and Alba for regional, and Alba has no constituency MSPs, then the SNP will keep hold of its 'excess' constituency MSPs, but Alba's regional MSPs will be awarded proportionally, without any deduction to counteract the SNP excess (because, obviously, they are different parties).

    Thus SNP-Alba gets you more pro-independence MSPs than SNP by itself.

    If I am right, then this is monumentally stupid, because there is no point creating an artificial majority for independence in Holyrood if there is no actual majority for independence among the general public - all you'll end up doing is holding another referendum and losing it.

    (Plus, the proportionality of the Scottish Parliament is supposed to be a model for Why Westminster Is Terrible. If it turns out that it can be manipulated in this way, then it becomes a model for Why Westminster Isn't So Bad After All.)

    I have previously voted SNP for constituency vote and Green for the list vote, and intend to do so again in May. I vote Green because I support their policies, but feel there is no point in voting for them in the constituency because they have no chance of winning. I like being able to cast a more nuanced vote than FPTP.

    However, the Green party is also pro-independence. It had not occurred to me that an SNP / Green vote could create a "supermajority." This term seems to have appeared only since the creation of the Alba party, and voting SNP / Alba doesn't seem to advance independence any more than voting SNP / Green would.

    Also, @BroJames and @DocTor I apologise for my post at 9.20, following BroJames post at 8.54. I hadn't read BroJames post properly.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    Also, I apologise for my post at 9.20, following BroJames post at 8.54. I hadn't read BroJames post properly.

    Noted and Thank you!

    BroJames
    Purgatory Host
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