Agenda – Scottish News



As suggested last week, today’s debate on gay ministers at the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland will dominate the news schedules.

Predictions that the Kirk will be split down the middle over the issue show that most media pundits have not actually read the report of the Special Commission which is the subject of the debate.

For instance, the Commission recommends putting off a final decision to next year or 2013, while the various polls in the report suggest that only a smallish minority in the Kirk would see acceptance of gay ministers as a reason for schism.

Expect a reasoned if passionate debate that will hopefully show the Kirk’s Christian side.


The First Minister is off to London for a joust with senior Coalition Government figures and to push Scotland’s surely unanswerable case for more powers and more money. Expect a major report on today’s visit later on

Later today, Mr Salmond will also address the Foreign Press Association in what should be a major speech on how he sees the future of Scotland in constitutional terms.

This speech comes ahead of the big set piece debate on Thursday at Holyrood entitled ‘Taking Scotland Forward.’


The AGM of Scotland’s other national drink company AG Barr will be among the main business stories today.


The Sunday Herald’s decision to publish a barely disguised picture of the Premiership footballer at the centre of the superinjunction row has caused a sensation among the English-based press and media who clearly don’t appreciate that Scotland has a separate legal system and we don’t do injunctions – we do interdicts, which must be granted by the Court of Session or Sheriff Court.

There will be those who argue that the Sunday Herald acted out of desperation as its circulation has nosedived since a relaunch went awry earlier this year, but every Scottish newspaper is in decline and editor Richard Walker is still to be congratulated on taking a stand against an English court deciding that it has global control when the internet and twitter make that presumption a nonsense.

The key issue is whether the Sunday Herald deliberately sold copies in England and Wales yesterday. If so, Mr Walker could yet end up in the pokey and get himself a new nickname – porridge.

Please note, as we definitely do have English-based readers, any comments on this matter will be moderated. With asterisks, if you get our drift.


The Sun reports that the Scottish Government is considering running a competition to find a new national anthem, as Flower of Scotland is dreary – it’s not, actually, it’s just not played at proper tempo. The First Minister likes ‘Scotland Will Flourish’, another Corries song.  
Predictably former Tory leader David McLetchie says ‘our national anthem is still God Save the Queen.’ Then they wonder why the Conservatives have been reduced to not even a rump, more a pimple, in Scotland.

For the record, God Save the Queen has NEVER been formally classed as the UK’s national anthem. No Act of Parliament has ever been passed to make it so. It is also divisive for a reason ignored by everyone – apart from the ‘rebellious Scots’ mentioned in one old verse, the first modern verse features the word God three times, and in excess of
15 per cent of the UK population (and probably a lot more) are atheists.

A new rousing secular anthem for Scotland?  Why not?


All the newspapers feature a story on the latest Icelandic volcano to erupt and the possibility that ash from Grimsvötn will fall on Scotland. Midday tomorrow is expected to be arrival time for the ash.  
Don’t hang out your washing.