Reform Scotland News: 21 November 2013


Reform Scotland

Daily Political Newspaper Summary: 21 November 2013

All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is highlighted and underlined.


In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV News and Sky News



Currency union: The First Minister of Wales has warned that he would try to block attempts to create a currency union between an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK as it might adversely affect Welsh taxpayers. (Herald page 1, Scotsman page 1, Times page 6, Record page 1)


Ian MacWhirter comments in the Herald that Welsh politics is too often ignored, and that their own progressing devolution could have implications for an independent Scotland.


Alex Salmond is reportedly planning to claim that a Yes vote would actually give Scotland a mandate to force the rest of the UK into a currency union. (Telegraph page 1)


Broadcasting: Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop has confirmed plans to create a national publically funded broadcaster from existing BBC Scotland resources if there is a Yes vote, and has insisted that the broadcasting corporation of an independent Scotland would not have to carry adverts in order to buy in popular BBC programmes. (Herald page 1, Scotsman page 2, Times page 11, Mail page 4, Record page 10, Express page 29)


Equal marriage: The first stage of the bill that will legalise same-sex marriage by 2015 has been passed as MSPs voted 98-15 for the proposals to proceed to the next level at Holyrood. (Herald page 5, Scotsman page 1, Telegraph page 6, Times page 1, Sun page 4, Courier page 13, P&J page 12, Mail page 2, Express page 2)


Aid: A new report from over 100 charities has suggested that an independent Scotland would have to spend $1 billion a year on aid in order to meet UN targets. (Herald page 7)


Shipbuilding: The SNP has branded Labour leader Johann Lamont “a disgrace” for saying that independence will destroy Scotland’s shipbuilding industry. (Scotsman page 6)


Pensions: SNP ministers have reportedly not checked whether the UK government would help them administer the state pension after independence. (Telegraph page 8)


North-east Councillor: Willie Young, a Labour councillor from Aberdeen City, has been accused of making offensive remarks after suggesting that people who supported independence were not “real Scots”. (P&J page 13)


Helen Eadie: The Scottish Parliament yesterday paid Tribute to Cowdenbeath MSP Helen Eadie, who died earlier this month at the age of 66. (Courier page 13)


Surveillance: A 2007 deal reportedly allowed America’s National Security Agency to phone, internet and email data from UK citizens who were not accused of any wrong doing. (Guardian page 1)


White Paper: Alex Massie comments in the Times that the SNP’s White Paper will have failed if it does not excite voters.



Tourism: According to accountancy firm Deloitte, tourism in Scotland has been predicted to generate £23 billion for the Scottish economy and create around 60,000 new jobs by 2025. (Herald, page 1, P&J page 10, Mail page 4)



Nursery hours: Reform Scotland has revealed new figures which show that only half of children in Scotland are guaranteed to receive 2 full years of government-funded nursery provision. The think-tank has called for all children to be given 2 years, with entitlement beginning at a fixed point in the year, just as it does for primary education, rather than it depending on when their birthday falls. (Herald page 11, Scotsman page 23, P&J page 23, Mail page 37, Express page 27)


Education Inequality: John McTernan comments in the Scotsman that Scotland’s education system is failing children from low-income households, and that statistics often mask this inequality.



Firearms Incidents: The Scottish Government has said that the number of firearms incidents in Scotland is at an all time low, after falling 32% in the last year. (Herald page 9,


Drink-drive limit: The new lower drink-drive limit for Scotland is to be delayed for nearly a year and will not be rolled out until at least October 2014. (Herald page 10)



Alcohol issues: Helen Puttick comments in the Herald that there is a hidden side to Scotland’s alcohol problem.



Corroboration: Lord Gill, Scotland’s most senior judge, has warned MSPs of the dangers of ending the requirement for corroboration in criminal cases. (Herald page 2, Scotsman page 20, Telegraph page 10, Times page 31, Mail page 20, Record page 2, Express page 1)     


Police paper work: Sir Stephen House, Chief Constable of Police Scotland, yesterday told MSPs that police officers were carrying out the duties of axed civilian staff on a “daily basis”. (P&J page 23, Mail page 10, Record page 6)