Robin McAlpine: We can't get our hands dirty if they're raised in surrender
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine argues that the Yes movement desperately needs to identify a strategy to get to independence, and then pursue it without fear
‘WAIT until the autumn – just be patient. By the end of October there will be a firm date for an independence referendum and a clear strategy will be set out. You don't need to worry your head about it.’ Or so I have been told a number of times over the last year. So can we have a serious debate about strategy now?
Robin McAlpine: Why the SNP membership needs to take back control
Ahead of the SNP’s annual conference, Common Weal director Robin McAlpine argues that waiting for the SNP leadership to take the initiative is likely to only lead to more despondency – the members have to make it happen
I WAS at a conference this week where an important and influential group in Scotland debated the future.
Robin McAlpine: Can Scottish Labour be led by a man whose heart isn't in Holyrood?
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine argues that Richard Leonard shows all the morbid signs of being the latest Scottish Labour leader for whom the job of First Minister is never going to come
MOST OF Richard Leonard's performance as Scottish Labour leader has been exactly what I predicted. But not everything – and it's the surprises which should worry his party.
Robin McAlpine: Ignore 'origin stories' – political debate deserves better
CommonSpace columnist and Common Weal director Robin McAlpine argues that political action matters more than personal background
I WAS BORN in a field.
No, literally. In a field. In the rain. And lightning. In fact, after being struck by lightning a family of ravens adopted me and fed me worms and bits of dirt to nurse me back to health. I was seven years old before I knew what socks were – before that my only clothing was made from moss and twigs. My ears fell off one winter.
Robin McAlpine: We just saw the best of the SNP – let's capture that spirit
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine says the SNP’s National Assemblies show the party membership has already made their mind up – they want a Scottish currency. Now there’s an opportunity to build a new indy vision together
WELL THAT was a weird kind of a campaign.
We were seriously worried that the substantial resources behind the Growth Commission would be used to push the case for Sterlingisation.
Robin McAlpine: Public debate has become an arms race – it will build a world of hate
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine says the nature of public debate is becoming increasingly nasty and personalised – only the far-right will win from this
IT IS a sad truth about humanity that whenever we create a new piece of technology, someone will try to use it as a weapon, will try to use it to hurt others.
Robin McAlpine: The Sunday Herald was once Scotland's future; the media we have is only its past
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine argues that the end of the Sunday Herald, which will publish its last paper on Sunday [2 September], must spark a serious debate about the future of media in Scotland
AS A NEW millennium was approaching and the new Scottish Parliament was just beginning, something happened in Scotland which reflected the future I hoped for.
Robin McAlpine: Going to Growth Commission Assemblies? Be clear-sighted and courageous
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine argues that a politically-neutral monetary system specifically designed for the needs of the Scottish economy can be put in place in time for day one of independence
I DON’T WANT to be here and I don't want to be in this position. Common Weal is all about making constructive contributions and working with others collegiately to get good things done. We don't want to be oppositional; we don't spend our time being against things but for them.
Robin McAlpine: In the face of paralysis we may be on the cusp of a real independence campaign
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine says there is paralysis in terms of the leadership of the independence movement, but the Scottish Independence Convention is ready to change that
ON 24 MAY I wrote a column in light of the hints coming from the SNP that there might be a campaign in favour of Scottish independence over the summer. You wouldn't have mistaken me for someone who sounded convinced.
Robin McAlpine: The Scottish education agenda shows bad policy-making makes bad policy
Common Weal director Robin McAlpine argues that the Scottish Government has made a mess of education policy, principally because it’s approach to policy-making is uninformed, top-down and half-baked
AS THE Scottish school holidays peter out, parents' minds turn to all those little back to school jobs that need done. But the challenges for the Scottish Government over the coming school year are somewhat greater than buying lunchboxes and pencil sharpeners.