Tuesday 27 August 2013

Who is Alex Orr?

Regular readers of the letters pages of the Scotsman, Herald, Edinburgh Evening News or Courier (among others) may be familiar with the frequent and numerous pro-separatist missives written by a Mr Alex Orr of Edinburgh. But who is this Mr Orr?

Is he perhaps just an ordinary man-on-the-Bruntsfield-omnibus, writing in a purely personal capacity, who just happens to be a rabid nationalist with too much free time on his hands?

On the other hand, could he be the same Alex Orr who...
  • Is the Managing Director of an Edinburgh-based PR company
  • Ran the media campaign for Scotland Forward in the 1997 devolution referendum
  • Subsequently joined the SNP in 1998
  • Stood as an SNP candidate for Edinburgh Council in 1999, and for the Scottish Parliament elections in 2003, 2007 and 2011
  • Was a member of the SNP's National Executive Committee in 2011?

But of course, you won't see any of that mentioned on those letters pages!

It has to be said, I'm not the first to point this out. But I think it's worth repeating, especially in light of recent events...

Saturday 24 August 2013

The EU referendum: a no-win situation for Salmond.

Wee Eck's speech in Hawick this week had the theme of the EU, and of course mention was made of the UK "sleepwalking out of the EU" following David Cameron's proposed referendum in 2017. But what if Salmond's scaremongering actually came to pass? If the UK left the EU, where would that leave a newly-separate Scotland in the process of joining the EU? Surely that would throw a sizeable spanner in the works of separation?

One European think-tank head certainly thinks it would at least scupper a Sterling monetary union; in his words “It is difficult to envisage such an arrangement, as a clash between two sets of rules could occur, creating legal uncertainty.”

So, to summarise... if the UK stays in the EU, then there is no need for separation for Scotland to also stay part of it; but if it doesn't, then the very feasibility of separation is called into question.