Scottish Defence League parade neo-nazi iconography

Posted on January 21, 2013

The English Defence League (EDL), and their offshoots the Scottish Defence League(SDL) and the Welsh Defence League (WDL), have long been at pains to claim they are not “extremists” or “neo-Nazis”. To quote one backside-covering statement:

We will not associate with any individual or group that does not reject extremism. If any such group does decide to attend our demonstration, they will be swiftly removed. We want to make it clear to racists, neo-Nazis and any other extremists – you are not welcome.

All of which makes the behaviour of the SDL at an Edinburgh protest on Saturday rather awkward.

Here they are spotted by CrashBangWallace reader @Mr_Mark_Brown:

That placard they’re holding is the logo of the Golden Dawn, whose name they were also reportedly chanting. Golden Dawn are the Greek neo-nazi movement which alarmingly secured Parliamentary Seats during the country’s ongoing Euro crisis.

As you can see, the Golden Dawn logo the SDL waved on Saturday is absolutely in no way similar to the swastika – no sirree:

Golden Dawn Logo

And the Golden Dawn definitely haven’t openly adopted the Nazi salute, one of their MPs definitely didn’t quote from classic anti-semitic fraud  “The Protocols Of The Elders of Zion” in the Greek Parliament last year,  while another Golden Dawn MP definitely doesn’t have a tattoo of the party’s logo alongside the slogan “SIEG HEIL” on his arm.

So by parading the Golden Dawn logo, and chanting their name, in Edinburgh this weekend the Scottish Defence Leage definitely aren’t neo-nazi. Got it?

Finally the Barnett Formula comes in handy – for allocating Scotland’s national debt

Posted on January 25, 2012

A lot of thought’s being put into the practical implications of Scottish independence – I suspect that if the country doesn’t become independent this time (which more English voters support than Scottish voters), it probably will in the next decade or two.

It’s the practical ramifications which are increasingly causing Alex Salmond touble. The problem being that the SNP likes to have its cake and eat it, too. Take fiscal devolution – when the TaxPayers’ Alliance proposed full fiscal devolution to the Scottish Parliament (an SNP manifesto policy), SNP spokesmen blew their lid because the report also called for an end to English Barnett Formula subsidies for Scotland.

So it has been with Alex Salmond’s plan for full independence – he wants to take as many powers and assets as possible, but leave the nation’s debts squarely on the shoulders of English taxpayers.

For example, he thinks that North Sea oil and gas should be allocated geographically (giving the Scots over 80% of the revenue) but national debt should be allocated on a per capita basis only (giving the Scots just over 8% of the total bill). This is particularly relevant when you start to consider where the debt and liability for RBS would fall in you took a geographical approach to where debt should be allocated.

Happily, someone on the Government E-petitions site has come up with an elegant solution. When we calculate the share of the national debt to be allocated to an independent Scotland, why not use the Barnett Formula?

Yes, is means each Scottish person would have 22% more debt than each English person, but if it’s fair for dishing the cash out then surely it’s fair for sharing the burden of our debts, too?

I’ve signed the e-petition here – I hope you will, too.

The train conductor who wants a ferry “blown out of the water”

Posted on July 26, 2010

The conductor on a train is responsible for passengers’ safety as well as just checking their tickets. He or she has the job of looking out for suspicious behaviour or dubious parcels, and if anything was to kick off then it is the conductor who would try to handle the situation in a way that would protect the passengers.

How would you feel, then, if the conductor of the train you were sitting on was apparently using Facebook to merrily urge bombings against other parts of the public transport system?

In a tie-in between Crash Bang Wallace and The Sun, we’ve today revealed someone who appears to be doing exactly that.

Given the recent riots and shootings in Northern Ireland, I thought it would be worthwhile looking round the various Republican Facebook groups to see what kind of views were being posted. Sure enough, it took about three clicks to get to “People against Loyalist marches where they’re not wanted“.

I’m not suggesting everyone in that group is an extremist – the vast majority hold legitimate views about the Orange Order marches. My expectation was that a few people might be spreading some extreme views – but largely for them to be usual suspects urging more rioting and violence against the police and army. That would be bad enough, but I had not anticipated this:

Click to enlarge

Nice, eh? So here we have someone claiming to be a train conductor who is apparently wishing for his passengers to be blown up after they make their connection to the ferry.

This is unacceptable. It’s unpleasant that Mark Connor appears to think what happened to Mountbatten (and the 14 year old boy who was blown up in the same attack) was a good thing, but it’s downright disturbing that he apparently wants to see something similar happen to hundreds of innocent civilians. How can he be trusted with the security of these passengers on his train if he wants them dead?

While police officers are putting themselves in the firing line trying to keep order on the streets of Belfast, the last thing they need is someone in a position of responsibility calling for rioting to turn into a terror campaign.

The story is in The Sun today, and ScotRail have confirmed they have suspended and are investigating a member of staff.

Crash Bang Wallace is an opinion blog, but I also intend to dig up and break new stories as regularly as possible. This isn’t just hot air, it’s “Politics with a punch”. It’s good to see the first of those punches land.

PS The original post has been taken down, now, but here’s the full screen grab:

Click to enlarge