THE monotone, super-serious delivery of the governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, caused much comment when he came to Scotland to deliver his verdict on Alex Salmond’s plans to keep the pound.
But there was also evidence of a dry wit amid the arid economic analysis.
At the beginning of his speech to business figures in Edinburgh’s George Hotel, Carney referred to the pessimistic nature of economics.
“I will stick rigidly to what Thomas Carlyle described as the ‘dismal science’,” declared Carney.
“Twenty minutes later you will realise why he did so,” Carney added as he contemplated his long dissertation on the economics of independence.
Steel snipes at Eddi for ‘murdering Burns’
FOLK singer Eddi Reader is something of a national treasure, who is becoming increasingly well-known for her support for independence.
One wonders if it is her belief in the independence movement that led to this rather catty verdict on her singing-style delivered in the House of Lords last week by the former Liberal leader Lord (David) Steel of Aikwood.
Pondering the future of the BBC after independence, Steel was moved to say: “Do we keep our participation in the British Broadcasting Corporation, or do we have our own SBC – no doubt, as it would have been last week, feeding us on a diet of Eddi Reader murdering Burns’s simple melodies?”
Clansmen pine for a wrong to be righted at Holyrood
IN THIS age where saying sorry for historical wrongs is part of the political landscape, Tory MSP Sir Jamie McGrigor is the latest public figure to demand an apology. This time from Holyrood.
In a debate on the anointment of the Scots pine as the national tree, McGrigor pointed out that the plant is on the badge of Clan Gregor. He then explained clansmen wore the badge in defiance after wearing tartan was outlawed following the unsuccessful 1745 Jacobite rebellion.
There was another reason for the clansmen adopting the tree. McGrigor said: “It was perhaps done more to protest about the loss of their clan name, taken away in the early 1600s, not by a Westminster Parliament but by a Scottish one. The clan is still awaiting an apology for that.”
Stevenson’s toast to his effervescent spouse
SANDRA Stevenson, wife of the ubiquitous Stewart Stevenson of the SNP, was one individual who had strong views on Scotland’s national tree. She sent her husband an urgent e-mail saying that she was keen on the silver birch getting national symbol status.
“That may, of course, say a little about my wife,” said Stevenson. “She is quite close to the silver birch as Cairn O’Mohr, one of our local non-vine-based wineries, produces a wonderful silver-birch wine that is lightly pétillant and – for those who have a vivid imagination – reminiscent of the finest French fizzy wine.”