Just realised I’ve missed an Ipsos MORI poll of Scottish voting intentions here, MORI’s first Scottish voting figures since the general election.

Westminster: CON 14%, LAB 40%, LDEM 13%, SNP 29%
Holyrood Constituency: CON 11%, LAB 37%, LDEM 13%, SNP 34%
Holyrood Regional: CON 12%, LAB 38%, LDEM 12%, SNP 29%

The poll also asked if people in Scotland supported the release of Abdelbasset Ali al-Megrahi one year on. 35% think it was right, 54% wrong. This compares to 42% right and 45% wrong when MORI orginally asked back in 2008.

264 Responses to “Latest Ipsos MORI Scottish poll”

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  1. @ Eoin

    Nice to meet someone else who does :)

    @ Richard in Norway

    On the subject of MP’s pay – do you (or anyone) know if they were/are going to be part of the public sector pay freeze? (On the same subject, forgive the rant, I don’t see why MPs who have other jobs – as some do – or who are independently wealthy – as some are – should get a wage anyway.)

  2. @Billy – You can buy a pack of cigarettes in Israel called Europa (I think there is a design showing her astride her bull). The 12 gold stars on blue is quite chic imo.

  3. @ Cozmo

    ATTAD now down to around 53 from a peak of 63 to 65 during April and May.
    I think that is brilliant, I really do. How long until it falls below 50%, I wonder. That would be an important data point for me. 8-)

  4. Roger Mexico – More smilies, less words, think of it that way!!

  5. @ Billy Bob

    That Israel pushing for EU membership is it? ;)

  6. billy

    MPs should not have other jobs, full stop

    but if you do a job you should get paid for it regardless of personal circumstances

  7. Barney

    “But I am an advocate of the UK as a rare thing, an entity where four nations might live together without too much friction and with good governance.”

    And wouldn’t the EU be even better? An entity where 27+ “nations might live together without too much friction and with good governance.”

    Another problem I have is with the Brits, is that you are so limited in your vision and imagination. Labour, in this regard at least, are just the Provo Tories.

    “The corrosive hatreds that mark this site” are normally between the UK Lab/Con parties. Your Zulu analogy is confusing. If you meant that the Unionists are the Zulus, you have forgotten your history!

  8. Alec,
    “I just want to see those denizens of Monaco and elsewhere have to roll up their sleeves and do some work for a change.”

    Sorry, this is going back a bit. So Alec, you have something against stored wealth, and think that only manual labour counts as work? I am guessing that this might be because you don’t have much wealth. The manly response to that situation is not to try to sequester other people’s wealth but to try to get some of your own.

    Sue – thanks for reminding my colleagues of my existence. Colin – you can be Lieutenant whatever-he-was played by Baker. I’ll settle for Private Hook.

  9. Barney

    “The NHS is the best in the world”

    Which one did she mean? If her company is based in Aberdeen, did she mean the Scottish NHS? As a Norwegian Conservative did she have a view on the privatisation/commercialisation of the NHS in England?

  10. @ Richard in Norway

    “MPs should not have other jobs, full stop”


    “but if you do a job you should get paid for it regardless of personal circumstances”

    Again, true. However with regards to MPs when some of them already have other good paying jobs (plus all of the expenses that can be claimed for) I don’t see why they need the MP wage – especially in these tight times of savings.

  11. @Billy – perhaps a discreet way to show style allegiance… Marlboro and Gitanes are fearsomely expensive, so for the poor it is either Europa or Time.

  12. @ Billy Bob

    Maybe (don’t know enough about cigarettes and smoking to be honest)

  13. @Billy – not enough role models in film or on TV I guess. ;)

  14. @Roger Mexico

    A stout defence of the Manx indeed!

    Just a few things to say. First of all, speaking as someone who is currently trying to prove that a Manx resident is a tax evader, I can tell you that there is absolutely no way to prove whether someone meets the residence requirement.

    There are no passport controls between the UK and Man, so to prove someone didn’t spend an average of 90 days a year on Man over 4 years I would basically have to follow them around for between three and a half and four years. Basically someone could say they were a Manx resident and visit once a decade and noone in officialdom would have any way to prove it.

    House prices may be more variable than you think. If you look at Rightmove.co.uk you will find a 1 bed flat in Douglas for sale at under £90,000. That compares very favourably with London. A little grotty perhaps, but then as you’d never actually have to set foot in the place it hardly matters.

    Then of course there are the dodges on documents. Isle of Man driver’s licences etc don’t appear on UK databases.

    You are, however, quite right about the authorities and their attitude to tax dodgers. Basically, they don’t care and won’t countenance investigating unless there is a loss of £500,000 or more. Even then all they really want to do is calculate a bill for arrears and send an invoice. There’s almost no chance of being prosecuted.

    Plus, of course, if you want financial documentation from the Manx government you have to send what is called a “Letter of Request” (just like any other foreign country). This adds a layer of paperwork that makes any chance of detection even less likely.

    To be honest I don’t really care what the Manx arrangements are for genuine residents. But I object to paying half of my income in tax when British businessmen can trouser millions a year and pay a flat rate 20% on it (and pay that tax to a government that doesn’t contribute to the actual services that person uses in their “real” place of residence).

  15. Neil A

    “There are no passport controls between the UK and Man” – nor are their between Ireland, the UK and the Crown Dependencies. We are a mini (very mini) Schengen.

    How do you deal with similar situations between the UK and Ireland? (Not being difficult! – just interested).

  16. Passport controls- you are having a laugh?

    I travelled to Paris recently from Rome… no pasport
    London to Linz no passport
    Belfast to London many times no passport
    Scotland and Ireland lol there have never been passport controls
    Dublin to Belfast no passport controls

  17. Oldnat.

    It doesn’t much arise, because Ireland isn’t that attractive a residence for tax dodgers. The exemption for passport controls doesn’t apply to flights anyway, which are the bulk of arrivals. But yes it can be a problem.

    But then, it’s not that hard for criminals to sneak across borders if they’re acting like criminals. The problem with Manx residency is that the onus on us in the police (a tax dodger is hardly likely to say “oh no, I was in Man. It’s just that I sneaked in on a trawler to avoid detection”)

  18. @Eoin,

    There is a new system in place (eBorders – you’ll probably heard of it) which will fairly soon cover all entry and exit from the UK (with a few exceptions). Of course there’s no accounting for error – sometimes customs are simply asleep (or on one occasion when my flight arrived early from the States, haven’t arrived for work yet).

    The point is with tax dodging is that the “exile” wouldn’t be able to guarantee that they would avoid detection and so would have to make plans to actually stay in their “residence” for the allotted time.

  19. Neil A

    “There is a new system in place (eBorders – you’ll probably heard of it) which will fairly soon cover all entry and exit from the UK (with a few exceptions).”

    Are the exceptions the Crown Dependencies?

  20. Neil A,

    I had heard of it vaguely but thanks for drawing my attention to it…

    To my detriment, I know far too many cons. Perhpas as a consequence of being from the under class but there you have it. There is an infinite amount of scams and an infinite amount of ways to dodge the law. In my view they are almost always three steps ahead of the cops. Tax Havens for some people is white sands in the carribrean… for me its the big fella down at the bar that always has a smile on his face, not a care in the world, smug in the knowledge that for a variety of reasons he is untouchable….

  21. Eoin Clarke

    “for me its the big fella down at the bar that always has a smile on his face, not a care in the world, smug in the knowledge that for a variety of reasons he is untouchable….”

    I know him too! But as he is in the West of Scotland, you wouldn’t appreciate my explaining to you, just how politics is involved in his being untouchable.

  22. Neil A

    The problem is really that the onus of proof is the wrong way. Presumably if it was for the taxpayer to prove that they were not in the UK, then they would have to provide schedules of where they were and when. This could be verified by travel records in the case of the IOM and you would then have a schedule to test as to if they were in the UK when they said they weren’t.

    Again the problem lies in the UK side of things.

    As you point out records exist for the airlines, but the Isle of Man Steam Packet has been insisting on all passenger names for a good five or six years so there is an audit trail there as well.

    I rushed to see evidence of the £90,000 flat on rightmove, but the cheapest they had was £190,000 (admittedly 2 bed and in a more expensive part of the Island). Sigh, still homeless! Actually there are some one-beds on the market at about £120,000, but they tend to be in complexes directed to the elderly market, presumably with high annual charges. And they’d definitely know all your comings and goings.

  23. Roger Mexico

    While I take your point, is it not rather UK centric? The logic of that is that everyone in the world would also have to demonstrate that they weren’t in the UK for tax purposes. Equally, everyone in the UK would need to be able to prove to every other country in the world that they weren’t in their tax regime as well!

  24. Old Nat

    Not really. It only applies if you’ve got income in that country, but you want to – and are able to – have it taxed elsewhere. I don’t think Tajikistan or Tahiti can send you tax demands on spec.

  25. Roger Mexico

    I understand. Seems reasonable then. However, it would seem more sensible for everyone to pay tax in the tax regime in which the money is earned. Although I presume that is too simplistic in terms of those who work internationally for multi-nationals etc.

  26. This is only of interest (maybe) to the fellow red spanners (apologies Howard)!

    My favourite sections from AB’s manifesto are:

    • Labour struggled at the last Election because many ordinary families trying to get on in life and do the right thing felt we were no longer on their side. This was particularly true in the south of England. Our way back to government means reconnecting with the voters we have lost since 1997.

    • I support a graduate tax to help fund our universities, but also because it is right that those who have benefited from higher education play a part in paying back in to the system, based on their salaries after university, so that the same opportunities are available for generations to come.

    • (We) must explore a longer timetable for halving the deficit, including over two spending reviews. However, I would ensure that no action is taken which jeopardised our AAA credit rating. If we follow the Coalition plans, we may close the deficit but will be left with public services which are permanently damaged and higher unemployment.

    • (I) will pursue a more balanced approach to public spending. Spending reductions do need to form a part of our deficit reduction plans which is why I have made a difficult choice as Shadow Health Secretary. I will oppose this government’s plans to increase in real terms the NHS budget every year of this Parliament. Instead we should maintain the NHS budget in real terms, by the rate of inflation.

    • We should ask all departments, within their reduced budgets, to protect spending programmes in three priority areas: promoting business growth in the regions; creating jobs of the future; and helping young people in tough times to find work. The most obvious economic point, which has been largely ignored, is that the best and quickest way to balance the budget is to generate sustained economic growth. This cannot be done by the Coalition’s policy of massive public spending cuts alongside tax rises that will reduce domestic consumption.

    • I will actively pursue progress towards a two-state solution which provides Israel with security and the Palestinian people with the ability to build their economy and to live without fear within their own state.

    • Coming through the credit crisis, we need to rebuild trust in financial organisations. More broadly however, we should respond to the growing desire amongst the public for different kinds of ownership and behaviour within the corporate sector. In short, Labour should make a fresh argument for ‘not for profit’, democratic mutuals as the way to build trust, involvement and ownership of important institutions and, playing a much bigger part in the future of our country.

  27. I haven’t read the document in full but from my first skim I was impressed.

    Very sensible idea on the NHS, I’ve always felt that we shouldn’t be punishing the likes of education in favour of health. After all, there’s arguably a strong correlation between educational attainment and health outcomes.

    My main objection, which isn’t exclusive to AB, is a graduate tax.

  28. @ Michael V

    I’m not sure about a graduate tax, myself; it would depend on the details. I think this is directed at Dems in general & Vince Cable’s clique in particular. The Tories made a bit of a fool out of Cable on this issue; they almost seemed to dismiss the idea of a graduate tax out of hand.

    There’s a some good politics in this mini-manifesto, as well as good policies.

  29. all these tax havens are small places with no or little defence capabilities

    the uk has a robust military

    there seems to be an obvious solution

    just kidding, they have the ultimate defence….. they burn all the money

  30. @Amber Star
    ATTAD – “How long until it falls below 50%, I wonder ?”

    About a fortnight ! Well in January it was 58, then peaked during April & May in mid 60’s. Since then it has dropped approx 1 point per week. Usual MOE fluctuations but the trend is clear. So I reckon below fifty sometime in September. Wayne will have to eat his shorts. Roll on conference time!

  31. @Roger,

    h ttp://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-15826047.html

  32. Amber

    “To divide & conquer, ’tis not in my nature”

    NC & DC will be delighted to hear it.

    Me too :-)

  33. Michael V/ Amber,

    A graduate tax is a cracking idea. The National Union of Students have been campaigning for it for some time. Ed Balls is the first to take up their support in Westminster.

    The bottom line is this… Russell group universities want to charge variable top up fees. Everything at uni (gym, canteens, accomodation) is in the process of being sub contracted out…

    A typical 3 year degreee might cost the following in 2-3 years time

    Fees £7k pa. x 3 = 21K
    Accom £3.8 pa. x 3 =11.4k
    Living expenses £3.5 pa x 3 = 10.5k

    A degree is set to cost students £42,900…

    Now if that turns out to be English, MAths, Georgraphy, History, Sociology, politics, psychology etc. etc. the student is 100% unemployable since they still need professional training

    eg.. masters legal studies, post grad certificate in education etc. etc.

    That reuires at least one more year… (in most cases two)

    They then start at the bottom of some rung (if they are lucky).

    Ordinary people cannot afford this… thus we do need a solution….?

    I am very open to other solutions but our c.310 170 Uni + 140 f.e.’s need a solution quick….

  34. PETEB

    “Colin – you can be Lieutenant whatever-he-was played by Baker. I’ll settle for Private Hook.”


    Actually , I’m beginning to feel that “Alien” is the film.


  35. Andy Burnham has apparently proposed “solidarity wealth tax” where the total value of an individual’s assets, less any debts, would be subject to an annual tax together with a new “land value tax” that would annually charge homeowners a percentage of their property’s worth.

    This would be called “Aspirational Socialism” apparently.

    That should go down well in the South East.

  36. Colin,

    He has copied these from French practise, which tells me he is considering taking us in the direction of the Social Model. We’ve talked about it before, I think the countries in Europe who practised it, managed to avoid the worse of the credit crunch, they came out of it quickest also… Germany, France, Swededn being three examples.

  37. Colin – I’m from the Aouth East and I think it’s inspired!

    As I understood it, the land tax, was not a property tax – the value of the property is deducted from the value of the land and that is taxed.

    Nice way to get people who own half of Surrey and Sussex to pay a few quid at last.

    Similarly the Solidarity wealth tax (don’t you just love the name?) deducts all liabilities and only taxes the wealth. Again, much better than VAT don’t you think?

    Brilliantly, it would only affect people who’d never vote for him anyway, just like this government targeting benefits, drug addicts, the disabled and council tenants.

  38. @ Michael V

    ‘Very sensible idea on the NHS’

    AB has previously said ,IMO sensibly, that the NHS budget should not be ringfenced for the reasons that you mention. However to me that means it is open to spending cuts so as to share the burden especially as it is a £100bn pa dept. This attempt to differentiate his policy from that of the coalition is almost meaningless. If the coalition increases the NHS budget by 0.1% in real terms that difference amounts to £100m which is not going to go a long way. Had he said that the budget would be maintained in nominal cash terms that would have been a start, a minimum policy that IMO the coalition should have adopted. I will be very surprised if the coalition maintains this policy both by the letter and by the spirit of the commitment.

    You both will note some of the men on this thread have chosen roles in “ZULU 2”. I cannot join in the fun as obviously a polling board does not enable me to audition in front of you both as the young Michael Cain.
    Perched on a burning straw roof, blond waves blowing in the breeze, what a site for any girl. And when I manfully utter those wonderful lines, “stop throwing those bloody spears at me” you would swoon.

    Poor Hook was the most Christian natural gentleman who ever lived. So the film makers made him a bullying drunk. The real Hook was eventually commissioned you know, and retired from the army to teach Sunday school.

  40. Roland – I have no doubt of it.

  41. Sue

    “deducts all liabilities and only taxes the wealth. Again, much better than VAT don’t you think?”


    “just like this government targeting benefits, drug addicts, the disabled and council tenants.”

    Is it?

  42. Eoin

    Thanks .

    I think the connection between the “Social Model” and the economic performance of Germany & France is both tenuous, and ambiguous.

    Germany is growing rapidle because of its export power.

    France is stalling. At their recent Financial summit, loss of AAA rating was considered, growth forecast cut, and committed to ” cutting the public deficit to 6 percent of GDP by 2011, whatever the level of economic growth, is the main objective of the country,” .

    This against a background of a pledge to ” avoid unpopular increases in income, value-added and corporate taxes.”

    The Social Model is under severe test & scrutiny.

    I am pleased AB is adopting it-but sad that it seems he will not be in a position to make it opposition policy.

  43. Sue

    “Brilliantly, it would only affect people who’d never vote for him anyway,”

    Ah -I see.

    Good plan ;-)

  44. @Eoin
    Re the UKPR posters’ tradition of ritual shorts-eating, does it have to be a rail station in Manchester ? If so does it have to be at a particular station & spot. e.g. under the clock in Oxford Road station ? 8)

  45. The Elephant in the Room – Homo-eroticism in the Film Zulu.

    Those interested can find a link to the above essay on the wikipedia page for this popular 1964 film.

  46. Roland – You said it.

  47. @SUE MARSH
    What ever I said its been moderated.

  48. @COLIN
    This is the point of my post which has bitten the dust.
    The tone of the unsubstantiated allegation is couched like some Tory final solution. Based on what? It seems a government cannot tamper with the status quo of the social security industry because however much is spent its never enough, and any suggestion of reigning it back is seen as the equivalent of selling nuclear weapon technology to North Korea.

  49. Amber Star: The Scots subsidise the English. Everybody knows that; the English are simply in denial about it. 8-)

    And this goes to you too, oldnat….


    I’ve just followed oldnat’s suggestion and dug up the GERS data (public accounts data published by the Scottish Government, ie. the SNP). And there it is, written in black and white, that Scotland received an extra £3.8 billion from the rest of the UK in 2008-09, on top of all other spending including oil revenues. That’s about 10-15% of the overall Scottish budget coming from the rest of us.

    So, clearly even the SNP acknowledge that Scotland is the subsidised entity.

    Curiously, I don’t see any mention of the additional £450 billion+ that was spent dragging RBS and HBOS out of bankruptcy. A massive debt (equivalent to over three times Scotland’s total GDP and far, far more than the debts that crippled Iceland and Ireland) acquired to rescue two Scottish banks but that will be repaid by all of the UK.

    So, as I say, enough. The facts just don’t back up your claims.

    Move along now.

  50. Latest YouGov poll (The Sun)
    C 41, L 39, Lib 12

    Govt approval 40, disapproval 40. The first poll to put them level?

    And another 12% for the Libs!

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