David Cameron's government has refused to discuss the steps that would
follow a 'yes' vote in next year's independence referendum
Scottish News: News in Scotland - Wednesday
Tell us what comes after referendum, urges Electoral Commission
Both the Holyrood and Westminster governments should clarify what will happen after next September's independence referendum, warns the UK's Electoral Commission. The election watchdog argues that it is in the public's interest to have both administrations set out the steps which would follow either a 'yes' or a 'no' vote next year. So far the UK government has refused to reach any agreement on what steps would follow a 'yes' vote with many observers believing that the lack of constructive engagement is designed to increase a sense of confusion over what would happen should Scots back a 'yes' vote. The Electoral Commission suggest the information be available by 20 December arguing: “We believe this is important for voters. We therefore recommended the Scottish and UK Governments clarify what process would follow the referendum in sufficient detail so as to inform people what would happen if most voters voted Yes or if most voters voted No.”
"No point in having Gaelic" in Schools
A highland politicians has claimed that children would be better off learning Mandarin or German rather than "wasting" money on Gaelic. Inverness councillor Jim Crawford said that plans to increase spending on Gaelic by £4mn was a "waste of resources" by the Scottish government and was a "ploy" to increase 'yes' votes in next year's independence referendum. For decades Gaelic was ignored by the British state and Gaels were forced to be educated in English while government administration was all in English in Gaelic speaking areas. Some historians estimate that the UK state owes many billions of pounds to Gaelic that was redirected to English in a policy of systematic cultural oppression. Once widespread across Scotland the two thousand year-old language is spoken by a small proportion of the Scottish population.
More Scottish news:
- UK crisis: Corruption levels soaring since 2008 financial crash
- Scottish independence: Man's limitations and Scotland's money
- 'No' vote to independence risks population exodus
- Bank of England should be abolished
CURRENCY INDEPENDENCE v UNION LATEST
(International news on currency union to inform the Scottish referendum debate)
Homelessness in Ireland rockets as former Euro banker refuses to appear at inquiry
The number of homeless people in Dublin has risen by 88 percent in the last year, according to a report by the Simon Community. The shocking news comes as former president of the European Central Bank Jean Claude Trichet has indicated that he will refuse to appear before a banking inquiry in Ireland, it is reported. The banker, who 'bounced' Ireland into a €85bn public bailout of private banks said that the current governor of the Irish Central Bank should attend instead. The inquiry is already facing difficulties given that former senior Anglo Irish Bank chiefs are facing trial including former chairman Sean FitzPatrick. After the bank's private debts were transferred to the taxpayer, Ireland has suffered extreme austerity leading to a dramatic loss in employment and living standards. With further budget cuts due vulnerable people are increasingly in danger, warns the charity. Ireland is a member of the euro currency union.
UK crisis: Libor fines for firm run by former Tory treasurer
A financial company run by Michael Spencer - the former Conservative Party treasurer - has been fined £55mn for fraudulent activities relating to the manipulation of Libor (London Inter-Bank Offered Rate). Three of ICAN's former employees also face criminal charges in the US in relation to investigations into the Libor-rigging fraud scandal which has engulfed all of the largest UK banks. The Libor market is worth hundreds of trillions of pounds - victims are millions of mortgage-owners, those with business loans and credit cards around the world - and has been described as the "biggest financial crime in history". So far no senior banking executive in the UK has been jailed in relation to Libor-rigging.
UK crisis: Most compensation claims for 'mis-sold' financial products handled unfairly
After customers were improperly or fraudulently sold payment protection insurance (PPI) across the UK, compensation claims have been improperly handled in most cases according to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Two-thirds of claims handled by small and medium-sized lenders have been found to be unfair by the regulator which said it disagreed with how many compensation claims were rejected by banks. Campaigner would like the regulator to name and shame the firms which are breaking the rules.
Syria: Opposition forces split into factions
The western-backed 'insurgent' forces which sparked a military conflict against the Syrian government have formally split into factions. As many as eleven Islamist 'rebel' groups inside Syria have announced that they no longer recognise the authority of the 'National Coalition'. Signatories include members of the 'Free Syrian Army' and the dominant al-Nusra Front which is affiliated to al-Qaeda. The group do not wish to be represented by the 'National Coalition' as it operates outside Syria. However most of the 'insurgents' fighting inside Syria are not Syrian and the majority of fighters belong to Islamist organisations with some connection to al-Qaeda. There are reports that some of these organisations may have been behind the recent chemical weapons attack in Damascus.
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