In 2014 Many Campaigners For Independence Warned That Rejection of Independence Would Result in the Imposition of a Dystopian Future on Scots – Thanks Mainly Due to Near 400,000 English Voters Resident in Scotland That Omen is Fulfilled




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Message for Dominic Cummings and the dystopian Tory Government – As did Rasputin, your end will see you on the bottom of the River Neva in chains.


Two of the most important blogs posted by myself. A must-read


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The Endless Attrition of Whitehall Civil Service

The Whitehall Civil Service model is being replaced by a system of ‘New Political Governance’ (NPG) centred on:

1. Politicized campaigning.

2. The burgeoning growth of political advisory staff relative to the permanent civil service.

3. The personalization of bureaucratic appointments.

4. The creation of a government machine that is ‘promiscuously partisan’.

Institutional changes are rapidly unfolding at a critical time, as Whitehall prepares to support Tory Ministers in carrying out the Brexit process while addressing a series of long-term structural challenges from the demographic pressures of an ageing society and the impact of climate change.

The Tory Government imposition of Austerity since 2010 has had a further transformative effect on Whitehall, with drastic reductions in the civil service workforce, the restructuring of government agencies, and a reconfiguration of the traditional roles and responsibilities of the permanent civil service. (The End of Whitehall? Patrick Diamond)


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Jan. 2020: Baldrick Cummings launches blistering attack on meddling civil service hellbent on thwarting Brexit

At a meeting for ministerial advisers in Downing Street, Johnson’s strategy chief accused some mandarins of failing to grasp the Government’s vision of a clean break from the EU.

Cummings, who previously masterminded the Vote Leave referendum campaign, delivered his tirade at the regular Friday meeting for ministerial special advisers. He told them:

“The Government won the election on a very clear vision of our future relationship with the EU. But the process of setting up a new “Task Force Europe” under the Prime Minister’s chief Brexit negotiator David Frost has revealed resistance to a full break with Brussels among some pockets of Whitehall. It is clear from the discussions that certain members of the team have been having that not every part of the Government has fully absorbed that vision of our future relationship with the EU. Civil servants have to accept that the UK’s transition out of EU regulations, due to end on December 31, will not be extended. The Government will push for “a normal, third-country relationship-based, if possible, on a Canada-style free trade agreement”. The UK will leave the EU’s Single Market and Customs Union and will not align with Brussels regulations after Brexit.” (Express)


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Number of SpAds passes 100 under Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson has expanded the government’s team of taxpayer-funded special advisers, with some being paid more than £100,000 a year.

Lee Cain, the director of communications, Sir Eddie Lister, the chief strategic adviser, and Munira Mirza, the director of the No 10 policy unit and co-author of the Tories’ 2019 election manifesto, are listed as the top earners, with a further four earning between £120,000 and £129,999.

Dominic Cummings, the chief special adviser to the prime minister, is paid between £95,000 and £99,999, according to details published in the Government’s annual report on special advisers.

The list shows staffing has increased from 99 full-time-equivalent employees under Theresa May to 108 under Johnson.

The prime minister’s personal advisory team has also expanded, with 44 members of staff now in place compared with May’s 37.

The total cost for SpAd staffing was £9.6m in the period from 1 April 2018 and 31 March this year, compared with £8.9m in the previous 12 months.

A government spokesman said: “Special advisers help ensure the government delivers on its election promises to the public like investing in the NHS and getting Brexit done. They protect the integrity and impartiality of the civil service by clearly separating out the provision of political advice to ministers. Opposition political parties receive almost £11m in taxpayer funding from Short Money and Cranborne Money in 2018-19.”

The total annual cost to the taxpayers is around £30m. (PoliticsHome)




An Expanding Profile of Alister Jack – Information Added Ad Hoc – Check Daily If You Find the Content To Be of Interest – Wednesday Update



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Sep. 2018: Jack’s rapid and undeserved rapid promotion

Only 14 months following his election to the Dumfries and Galloway constituency, Jack will be taking up an additional role as Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to Baroness Evans, the leader of the House of Lords.

As PPS he will be an important liaison working with the Whips’ offices in both Houses particularly with key Brexit legislation coming forward in the coming months.

His role is to advise the Leader of the Lords and the Front Bench on what is happening in the Commons in terms of Parliamentary business. This includes providing an up-to-date assessment of the Parliamentary party, reporting on what is coming up and how it fits into the Government’s legislative agenda. He will also relay what the Lords are thinking back to the Government.

Jack said: “I hope my additional responsibilities will give me even greater opportunity to raise awareness of constituency issues at UK ministerial level. My first priority will always remain the people of Dumfries and Galloway and I’m honoured to be playing this role at such a crucial time for our country.”

Comment: Confirmation Jack was a prime mover, in the introduction and development of the hardline Tory Brexit policy that brought about the demise of Theresa May. His actions directly contradict his statement that his priority will always be the people of Dumfries and Galloway who voted to remain within the European Union. His loyalty is to the right-wing Tory Party and its damaging dogma which is bringing so much harm to Scotland.

Mundell, who was sacked by Boris Johnson, described Jack as a “Brexiteer” and followed up with the comment that he had been forced out so that Johnson could mould a Cabinet in his own shape, promoting those who would back a no-deal Brexit.

Jack has always been against Scottish devolution and is also a hardline opponent of Scottish independence and made it clear following his appointment that he would use his position to “defend the Union against those who would seek to tear it apart”.



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The Jack Family of Dumfries

Alister Jack was born in Dumfries in 1963. His parents were David William (1936-1982) Jack and Jean Douglas Pringle (1941- ****).

He was educated at Dalbeattie Primary School, Crawfordton House, and Glenalmond College, (near Perth).

His father, a farmer died aged only 46y in 1982 when Jack was just completing his education at Glenalmond.

His mother Jean (one of the Hawick resident, Douglas and Pringle families) married John Glen Alexander Tulloch (1940-****) in 1985.

The Tulloch family is well connected at the highest levels of society and businessman and landowner John owns a number of estates and businesses in Scotland and wider afield.

As Jean Douglas Tulloch she was appointed to and held the position of Lord-Lieutenant for Dumfries from (2006-2016).

She took up ownership of Courance Farm, near Lockerbie, on the death of her first husband and gifted it to her son when she retired.

Alister is married to Ann Hodgson (1965-****), they live northeast of Dumfries and have three children;

Baroness Emily Ann Sweerts de Landis (nee Jack),(1981): Who married into a European family of note and wealth. Gifted academically she founded and runs her own successful business in London,

Alice (1991): Is the Operations manager of the Jack family business.

Will (1996): On completion of postgraduate studies at Oxford Brookes University he took up employment, in 2018 as a Graduate Surveyor with, DohertyBaines, a Commercial Real Estate Company based in London.

Alister is a former Deputy Lieutenant for Dumfries, (one rung down the ladder from his mum) and deputy-chairman of the River Annan and District Salmon Fishery Board and the River Annan Trust.

He is also a member of the Queen’s Bodyguard for Scotland, the Royal Company of Archers.


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2013: Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) funding 2014-2020 – Financial allocations for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales remains the same for the next funding period.

This means that the historic intra-UK split of direct payments remains in place and the additional convergence funding received by the UK because of Scotland’s poor per hectare payment rate will be split between the UK countries.







Scotland’s allocation of CAP funds, by hectare
Scotland now has the lowest amount of direct farm funding, per hectare of farmland, in the EU.

Average per hectare direct payments across EU countries in 2020



The Convergence Mechanism

During the negotiation of the 2014-2020 CAP programme at EU level, a convergence mechanism was agreed. This aimed to bring the amount of Pillar 1 funding all Member States received closer to the EU average, based on a per-hectare payment measure. The average EU payment rate was €268 per ha1. So, Member States with low payment rates per hectare received additional money.

As the graph below shows, Scotland had a very low per hectare payment rate at the time.

Scotland’s allocation of CAP funds in 2013




Late spring of 2019: The allocation of CAP funding in the UK has remained controversial since 2013 and responding to pressure from the Scottish government the UK Government initiated an independent review (the Bew review) into the factors that should be considered to make sure that funding for domestic farm support is fairly allocated. More information here:



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Late Sep 2019: Boris Johnson buys the Aberdeen and North East Scotland farming community votes and stupid is as stupid as they fall for the empty promise

On a short stopover visit to Aberdeen Johnson announced that £160 million of European convergence funding wrongly withheld from Scottish farmers almost three years ago will be released to the Scottish government shortly. Johnson, who was in Aberdeenshire to meet local farmers, said:

“For too long, Scottish farmers have been given a poor deal by the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy, which is why we are taking this opportunity to change things for the better. I also made a pledge to resolve the historic funding gap for Scottish farmers and delivering on this promise has been a priority since I became Prime Minister. Today’s announcement is the first step in making sure future funding is fairly allocated across the UK, taking into account the unique farming environments in Scotland”.

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack hailed the belated release of the £160 million funding for farmers, saying: “This is a brilliant boost. I’m absolutely delighted by this announcement and know our hard-working farmers across Scotland will welcome it warmly. Leaving the EU will give us a historic opportunity to tailor support better to Scotland’s unique farming environment. This is something I’ve lobbied for as a backbench MP and will continue to pursue as Scotland Secretary.”

NFU Scotland president Andrew McCornick described the money as being the “largest funding uplift for the sector in recent memory”. And stated: “Securing a fair agricultural funding settlement that recognizes the flaws in the historic approach has been a priority for NFU Scotland. We thank Lord Bew for undertaking this review and his conclusions on how agricultural funding should be allocated.”

Ian Blackford, the SNP leader at Westminster, said:

“Three years too late, the cash is coming to Scotland”. And SNP MSP Stewart Stevenson said: “It was the Tory government who stole tens of millions of European cash from the pockets of Scottish farmers. Boris Johnson is a thief returning to the scene of the crime. In doing so, he is reminding voters across the North East how disastrous his Brexit plans will be with experts predicting Aberdeen will be the worst-hit city in the whole of the UK.”

A Labour Party spokesperson commented:

“Boris Johnson’s disastrous plan for a no-deal Brexit will be calamitous for Scottish farming. It will create a crisis in seasonal farm work and NFU Scotland has previously warned his plans could mean tariffs on exports of up to 65% on beef and 46% on lamb. This Prime Minister is no friend to Scottish agriculture and he should do what Labour and businesses the length and breadth of the country are telling him to do – stop playing games and take no-deal off the table.”




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The Register of Members’ Financial Interests: As of 17 June 2019 – Alister Jack (Dumfries and Galloway)

1. Employment and earnings

Until 21 February 2019, the non-executive chairman and director of Fulling Mill Ltd (manufacturer of fishing flies). Received £15,000 a year, paid monthly, for an estimated 60-80 hrs a year, chairing four board meetings a year and giving general advice.

2. Support linked to an MP but received by a local party organization or indirectly via a central party organization

Name of donor: John Cooper: Amount of donation, or nature and value if donation in kind: £6,000 paid to my campaign fund.

Name of donor: David D Stevenson: Amount of donation, or nature and value if donation in kind: £2,000 to my campaign fund

Name of donor: John Cooper: Amount of donation, or nature and value if donation in kind: £6,000 paid to my campaign fund.


6. Land and property portfolio: (i) value over £100,000 and/or (ii) giving rental income of over £10,000 a year

Agricultural land in Dumfries and Galloway:

Two cottages in Dumfries and Galloway:

Salmon fishery in Dumfries and Galloway:

7. Shareholdings: over 15% of issued share capital

Atlantic Solway Holdings Ltd; investment holding company.

Cantco Ltd; Lloyds insurance underwriting.

Courance Farms.

Edinburgh Self Storage Ltd.

Fishfigure Ltd; fishing app.

Mollin HEP Ltd; hydro-electric power.


7. (ii) Other shareholdings, valued at more than £70,000

One Rebel Ltd; fitness club.

Privet Capital Aeromet LP; supplier of aluminium and magnesium castings.

Privet Capital Pyser LP; supplier of precision optical and electro-optical equipment.

Rars Woodlands Ltd; Christmas tree grower.

Rars Woodlands 2 Ltd; Christmas tree grower.

Rars Woodlands 3 Ltd; Christmas tree grower.

Thomas Murray Network Management Ltd; custody rating on the global securities services industry.

8. Miscellaneous

Unpaid Director of Atlantic Salmon Trust, a charity for the conservation of wild salmon.

Until December 2018, unpaid Chairman of Fisheries Management Scotland, an umbrella organization for all fishery boards and trusts in Scotland.

From December 2018, an unpaid director (formerly Chairman) of River Annan Trust, a charity promoting conservation work in the River Annan Catchment.

From December 2018, an unpaid board member (formerly Chairman) of the River Annan and District Salmon Fishery Board.

Unpaid Director of Atlantic Solway Holdings Ltd; investment holding company.

Unpaid Director of Cantco Ltd; Lloyds insurance underwriting.

So much personal business to attend to. Where does he find the time to fully discharge his duties to his constituents as an MP?



Alister Jack




Alister Jack MP is the new Secretary of State for Scotland after Prime Minister Boris Johnson, on his first day in office, sacked David Mundell.

Alistair Jack has been a Member of the UK Parliament since the General Election of 2017 representing Dumfries and Galloway which he won with a whopping 43.3% of the vote, ousting the sitting SNP MP who got 32.4%. Since then he has been rather quiet in the House of Commons.

They Work For You is an excellent site for checking how your MP’s voted on different issues. How did Alister Jack vote?:


Laws promoting equality and human rights
UK membership of the EU
Higher Taxes on banks
Transferring more powers to the Welsh Assembly
Transferring more powers to the Scottish Parliament
Financial incentives for low carbon emission electricity generation methods


Raising the threshold at which people pay Income Tax
Measures to reduce tax avoidance
New High-Speed Rail Infrastructure
Reducing the amount of funding local government gets from central government

He spoke in 11 debates in the last year — well below average amongst MPs.

He received answers to 10 written questions in the last year — below average amongst MPs.

So that is Alister Jack’s record so far as MP for Dumfries and Galloway.

What about the man himself?

He was born on the 7th of July 1963 and went to Dalbeattie Primary School. Then he went on to Crawfordton House—a private prep school near Moniaive, Dumfriesshire—onwards to Glenalmond College, at that time an all-boys independent boarding school and finally Heriot-Watt University.

From there he made a fortune buying, founding and selling businesses. He owns 1200 acres of land near Lockerbie on which there is a dairy farm.

Let us not forget either that Alister Jack is a member of the Queen’s Bodyguard for Scotland, the Royal Company of Archers.

Secretary State for Scotland

Since the setting up of the Scottish Parliament, it has been difficult to justify having the office of Secretary State for Scotland. Indeed it has been suggested many times that the position does not fit with a devolved system.

The role according to the UK Government:

The main role of the Scottish Secretary is to promote and protect the devolution settlement. Other responsibilities include promoting partnership between the UK government and the Scottish government, and relations between the 2 Parliaments.

It might surprise folk that despite this limited job description a massive new building has been constructed in Edinburgh for the Secretary of State for Scotland.

The new building – Queen Elizabeth House – will also house HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). Another hub will also be opened in Glasgow. From the start of 2020, these buildings will be filled with UK civil servants – 3,000 in the Edinburgh one.

The offices will be equipped with the latest IT equipment.

At the handing over of the keys, the then Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell said he was very much looking forward to inviting the Westminster cabinet to meet in it. Oops, that’ll be Alister Jack’s job now.

It is difficult to find out much about Alister Jack’s work in the UK Parliament and for his constituency but here is a short video featuring the past and present Secretaries of State for Scotland after their election in 2017. (Fiona Grahame of the Orkney News 20 Jan 2020)




A list of Farmer Jacks Business Interests




Scottish Tory MP has over £70,000 of shares invested in Jardine Matheson Holdings (JMH), which is incorporated in Bermuda.

Farmer Jack has significant business interests and declares shares in 16 companies, in 10 of which his personal holding is worth at least £70,000.

One of the entities is “industrial conglomerate” JMH, which is an Asian-based business group. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and provides management services to companies in the wider group.

JMH was incorporated in 1984 in Bermuda, a British Overseas Territory that can provide tax advantages to firms that register on the island.

JMH is chaired by Eton-educated Sir Henry Keswick. Jack declared £3,000 of support from Sir Henry in the following Westminster declaration category: “Support linked to an MP but received by a local party organization or indirectly via a central party organization.”

Jack also declared £5,000 from Percy Weatherall, who is listed as a JMH director, in the same category on his MP register of interest.

In JMH’s latest half-yearly results, the group’s underlying profit for the first six months of 2017 rose 20 percent to $765 million, while revenue was $19.4 billion.

A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives said Jack would not be disposing of the shares, adding:

“Quite rightly, there is no law banning politicians – or anyone else – from becoming involved in companies that happen to be registered in Bermuda.” (The Herald Aug 2017)





Farmer Jack and Cantco Holdings

Jack took over the company from Han Ngok Steve Cheng 25 August 2016. Cheng registered his companies in the Cayman Islands, another notorious tax haven. Much more here (





Alister Jack and his Gentlemen Tory Farmer friends wield their power at Westminster

A recent report advised that one-third of the UK population was cutting down on meat, including one in eight who are vegetarian or vegan. This was caveated by other evidence that many were not totally strict and would occasionally eat meat.

Nevertheless, the trend is clear, and people are reducing the amount of meat they eat. And a major reason for doing so is because of health concerns. It’s therefore interesting to read that globally, food production is focused on the wrong kinds of food.

Researchers in Canada investigated what kinds of food were being grown, and found a glut of grains, sugar, and oils, but not enough fruit and vegetables. This is certainly the case in Britain, where an estimated 85% of agricultural land is used to grow meat and dairy products, with most of the rest being used to grow grains, oil crops – and sugar.

The UK is self-sufficient in pork and chickens but has to import over half of our vegetables and most of our fruit.

By value, the UK imports over 90% of the fruit and veg we consume. Clearly, this needs to change, and quickly.

It is essential therefore that the new Agriculture Bill, currently being progressed through Parliament, provides the policy leadership so desperately needed.

But the majority of gentlemen farmer MPs are gathered against the proposals, as they stand at present and they are a powerful lot.

There are around 290,000 farmers, including spouses and business partners in the UK – about 0.5% of the UK’s adult population. Logic dictates that if the number of farmers (or their spouses) who became MPs was the same as for any other walk in life, we would expect to see 3-4 farmer/farmer’s spouse MPs. Instead, we have rather more than that.

Of the 55 MPs who spoke in the 2nd reading debate of the Agriculture Bill, an astonishing 25% of them were either gentlemen farmers, owned farmland, or owned part of a farming business.

Another 10% identified as hobby farmers, farmer’s spouses, or had jobs in farming, or in one case came from “a long line of plowmen.” It is no surprise that almost all farmer MPs are Tory’s, aside from one DUP MP who owns farmland and a large meat-processing business.

There is a Parliamentary convention that an MP should declare any interests they may have in a topic under debate, before making comments.

Most of the gentlemen farmer MPs just referred to their register of interests, as in “I refer the House to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests”.

But ever coy Alister Jack, Tory MP for Dumfries and Galloway, failed to mention that his ownership of Courance Farms and a number of other agricultural enterprises are provided with six-figure farming subsidy payments each year.

The conflict is clear. The National Farmers Union (NFU) preferring that farmers be paid to produce more food, with a few crumbs being spent on the environment continues with its campaign to derail Tory plans to introduce payments to farmers for “public goods”, rather than just paying landowners for owning land, as is currently the case.

So far the Tory government has held out against the pressure. but for how long??

More on this at



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The Jeffrey Epstein Debacle has the Potential to Bring Many Powerful People Down – British MI-6 agent and Labour MP, Douglas Alexander Allegedly Complicit Aiding the Activities of the Republican Party


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The 2000 USA Presidential Election

The conduct and outcome of the election, contested by the then Vice President, Al Gore and George W Bush.were controversial with allegations of fraud being levelled against the Bush camp, who won.

But Gore failed to make an issue of the result and subsequently drifted away from mainstream politics leaving the field clear for Hilary Clinton.

But the blatant fraud was uncovered and revealed to the American public by intrepid investigative reporters who put their lives on the line.


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How the Republican Party Gained the Presidency by Fraud

Choicepoint software programming, produced by Yang Enterprises, had the potential to be uplinked to American and foreign satellites.

It was installed in the “Diebold” voter machines, and pre-programmed in West Virginia, Missouri and Tennessee around 30 days before the November 2000 presidential election.

NASA and the NSA, together with the Bush campaign was then able to manipulate voting results from the three states aforementioned and, accordingly, corrupt the Voter News Service results and steal West Virginia, Missouri, and Tennessee from then-Vice President Albert Gore Jr.

As insurance, the same Choicepoint software programme was used in Florida to illegally remove up to 50,000 registered Florida voters off the voter rolls by classifying them as convicted felons when they were not.

In 2000, investigative whistleblower Ray Lemme published an expose revealing the involvement of former Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush in the fraud,

British MI-6 agent and Labour MP, Douglas Alexander was also accused of complicity aiding the activities of the Republican Party by permitting the use of the British Galileo satellite and the Choicepoint software for data manipulation. An investigation failed to reach an agreed conclusion.

In 2003, Ray Lemme was found dead (ruled suicide) in a hotel room in Valdosta, Georgia.


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2004-2006 – The Fall of Jack Abramoff Reveals Extensive Corruption in American Politics

An American lobbyist, businessman, movie producer and writer, he was at the center of an extensive corruption investigation leading to his conviction and to 21 others either pleading guilty or being found guilty, including a number of White House officials, U.S. Representative Bob Ney, and nine other lobbyists and congressional aides.

In 2006, he was sentenced to six years for mail fraud, conspiracy to bribe public officials and tax evasion. He served 43 months before being released in 2010.

His extensive links to the Republican Party, Yang Enterprises and their Choicepoint software programmes alerted investigative journalists and in 2009 new evidence was revealed, pointing to the alleged involvement of Mossad, in the suicide/murder of Ray Lemme.

Abramoff’s lobbying and the surrounding scandals and investigation are the subjects of two 2010 films: the documentary Casino Jack and the United States of Money, released in 2010, and the feature film Casino Jack also released in 2010.


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2020 – Where are We Now? – Tom Heneghan, International Intelligence Expert Explains

It can now be reported that a Federal Grand Jury in Boca Raton, Florida (being controlled by the U.S. Military Tribunals) have massive evidence previously covered up connecting New England Patriot’s owner Robert Kraft, convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, known prostitute Cindy Yang, current U.S. President Donald Trump and, last but not least, year 2000 election stealer and drug dealer Jeb Bush to a child sex trafficking prostitution, narcotic drug trafficking operation headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida with direct ties to Miami Pier 51 and the noted CIA front corporation Yang Enterprises with links to NASA.

The dots have now been connected to all of this treasonous activity by the U.S. Military Court for the District of Columbia to the year 2000 Bush-CIA P2 electoral coup d’état directed against then Vice President Albert Gore Jr. and the American People.

We can now divulge that Yang Enterprises is connected to Jeb Bush, Mel Sembler, former Jeb Bush gubernatorial running mate Mark Foley, Bay Point schools and British MI-6 agent Douglas Alexander linked to Choicepoint software, the British Galileo satellite, along with Chinese satellites, in the blatant theft and hacking of the year 2000 presidential election.

We can also report that the Florida Grand Jury has reopened the investigation of the murder of year 2000 presidential election whistleblower Florida State Department of Transportation investigator Ray Lemme murdered in 2003 ruled a ‘suicide’ by corrupt Republican party.

It is important to remember that in 2007 Jr Bush fraud, along with then U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta, now Trump Labor Secretary, and corrupt Bush-Clinton former Independent Counsel and pedophile enabler Kenneth Starr, covered up the criminal conspiracy involving Jeffrey Epstein child sex trafficking, prostitution rings, narcotic drug running and the theft of the year 2000 presidential election with the illegal plea bargain tied to Epstein which the U.S. Military Tribunals and new Florida Grand Jury are now investigating.

Late word is that indictments have already been issued, including that of current, corrupt Bush-Scherff stooge Independent Counsel Robert Mueller who, at one time, tried to grant Epstein immunity.


Much more here:


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Independence Supporting Scots Should be Rooting For Jackson Carlaw to Win the Scottish Tory Leadership Contest – He Has Promised to Get rid of Murdo Fraser in 2021 – Now That’s Progress


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When I’m Leader Tory List MSPs will be forced to stand down

Long-serving Conservative MSPs will be forced to stand down from the Scottish Parliament at the next election if they fail to win a constituency seat, under a radical plan by a leadership candidate to introduce fresh blood into the party.

Jackson Carlaw said they would only be able to serve three consecutive terms as list MSPs, who are elected using a complicated system of proportional representation to represent one of eight regions of Scotland.

Significantly, Carlaw said he would also apply the change retrospectively, meaning a series of the party’s most high-profile figures would have to win a constituency at the next election or step aside.

They include Murdo Fraser, who is serving his fifth full term as a Mid Scotland and Fife regional list MSP.

The change aims to address the situation whereby the same people are elected time and again, regardless of their performance, because rankings on the regional list are decided by loyal Conservative members.

Carlaw argued the change would be an effective method of reinvigorating the party. He said:

“I was very impressed by what David Cameron did at Westminster to refresh the party and I would ask the (party management) board to consider term limits of MSPs being elected three times or re-elected three times consecutively on the list. I realise that’s going to be unpopular with some, I realise it’s controversial, but I believe we have to substantially renew the face of its party, not its name. Leadership requires that you take tough decisions.”

Carlaw emphasized the new rules would also apply to himself. The changes would apply in the 2021 elections and he said he would be “happy” for them to be retrospective.

The bulk of Conservative MSPs at Holyrood have no constituencies of their own being reliant on the regional list for their seats. Many have used the system to win re-election since devolution started in 1999.

List seats are allocated to parties using a formula based on the number of votes they received and taking account of the number of constituencies they hold in each region.

Candidates are given seats according to a ranking decided by Tory members, but such is the loyalty of the party’s rank-and-file that they consistently choose the same people no matter how poorly they perform.

Carlaw suggested that long-serving list MSPs were being rewarded for electoral failure. He said:

“At the end of the day, if you’ve had three terms as a list MSP, that’s three times you’ve failed to win your (constituency) seat. Nobody is entitled to sit permanently in parliament. There’s a generation of talent emerging now that I think we’ve got to do our very best to promote.”



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Much more info to be found here:


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