{"JP":[ {"NewsSection":{"name":"uk","detaillevel":"full", "Articles": {"count":25,"detaillevel":"full","articlesList":[ {"article": { "url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/uk/6-8m-hit-by-facebook-bug-which-allowed-apps-access-to-photos-1-4844420","id":"1.4844420","articleHeadline": "6.8m hit by Facebook bug which allowed apps access to photos","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544809792000 ,"articleLead": "

Facebook has discovered a bug which may have affected up to 6.8 million people and given third-party apps wider access to user photos on the social network.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4844419.1544809789!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Facebook admitted the breach."} ,"articleBody": "

The social media firm said the bug was found in software that used Facebook login to give third-party apps on the platform permission to access a user’s photos, and was active for 12 days between September 13 and 25.

The bug meant access was granted to a broader set of user images than intended, Facebook said, including images uploaded to the site but never posted.

“When someone gives permission for an app to access their photos on Facebook, we usually only grant the app access to photos people share on their timeline,” the social media site’s, Tomer Bar, said.

“In this case, the bug potentially gave developers access to other photos, such as those shared on Marketplace or Facebook Stories.”

“The bug also impacted photos that people uploaded to Facebook but chose not to post. For example, if someone uploads a photo to Facebook but doesn’t finish posting it - maybe because they’ve lost reception or walked into a meeting - we store a copy of that photo so the person has it when they come back to the app to complete their post.”

Facebook said it believes the bug affected up to 1,500 apps built by 876 developers.

“We’re sorry this happened. Early next week we will be rolling out tools for app developers that will allow them to determine which people using their app might be impacted by this bug,” Mr Bar said.

“We will be working with those developers to delete the photos from impacted users.

“We will also notify the people potentially impacted by this bug via an alert on Facebook. The notification will direct them to a Help Center link where they’ll be able to see if they’ve used any apps that were affected by the bug.”

The social network recommended that users log into any apps, which they have previously given access to their photos, to check which images the app has access to.

The incident is the latest in a series of data breaches to hit the social network this year, following the Cambridge Analytica scandal and another leak in September which affected around 29 million users.

The Irish Data Protection Commission, the lead supervising authority for Facebook in the EU, confirmed it was aware of the incident and was investigating Facebook’s compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), introduced earlier this year.

“The Irish DPC has received a number of breach notifications from Facebook since the introduction of the GDPR on May 25 2018,” the commission’s head of communications Graham Doyle said.

“With reference to these data breaches, including the breach in question, we have this week commenced a statutory inquiry examining Facebook’s compliance with the relevant provisions of the GDPR.”

The maximum fine the EU can levy for breaking GDPR rules is 4% of a company’s annual revenue, or around £1.2 billion in Facebook’s case.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4844419.1544809789!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4844419.1544809789!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Facebook admitted the breach.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Facebook admitted the breach.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4844419.1544809789!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/why-tories-can-t-be-trusted-with-devolution-joyce-mcmillan-1-4843918","id":"1.4843918","articleHeadline": "Why Tories can’t be trusted with devolution – Joyce McMillan","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544785572000 ,"articleLead": "

The chaos over Brexit is of crucial importance to the powers Scottish ministers will have, says Joyce McMillan.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843917.1544774651!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Derek Mackay and Nicola Sturgeon helped return politics to something like normality this week (Picture: Greg Macvean)"} ,"articleBody": "

There was a widespread sigh of relief, this week, as Scotland’s Finance Secretary Derek McKay rose at Holyrood to make his annual draft budget statement; not because the statement was a joyous or even particularly interesting one, but because it seemed to represent a brief oasis of ‘normal’ politics, amid the obsessive Brexit chaos now sweeping Westminster.

Among other familiar bread-and-butter issues, there were Tories arguing that taxes on the well-off should be lower, while the SNP suggested that maintaining those tax levels – while Westminster cuts them – is both sensible and right, to protect Scotland’s public services; and in a week that saw Westminster convulsed by one Brexit-related crisis after another, this straightforward budget discussion seemed like an old political colleague not encountered for a while, and greeted in the lobbies of power with a warm handshake. Nicola Sturgeon even said that it should remind people what “strong and stable” government really looks like; although that seemed a little bit of a stretch, for a Scottish Government not yet certain that its budget can even muster a Holyrood majority.

There is no room, though, for any complacency about the state of Scottish politics; and not only because of the growing threat of a chaotic Brexit. For while, at the moment, the focus is on the searing divisions in British politics opened up by the EU referendum of 2016, the fact is that the 2014 independence referendum also left Scotland deeply divided, with two roughly equal bodies of opinion completely unable to agree, in a dispute that encompasses every aspect of our future collective life, from practical economic policy to the deepest questions of identity and belonging.

And as if to remind us of those divisions, this week the UK Supreme Court delivered its opinion on the legitimacy of the Scottish Parliament’s Continuity Bill, designed to transfer EU legislation in devolved areas into Scottish law, and overwhelmingly approved by the Scottish Parliament in March of this year, with only the Tories voting against. The Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament, Ken McIntosh, had already given his opinion that the bill was beyond the Parliament’s powers; Scotland’s Lord Advocate disagreed. And the UK Government, particularly exercised by a clause which suggested that it should not be able to change the balance of powers on devolved matters without the consent of the Scottish Government, decided to take the whole matter to the Supreme Court, in order to ensure that the writ of its own EU Withdrawal Act – complete with sweeping “Henry VIII” powers – would run across the whole of the UK.

READ MORE: Parts of Scottish Brexit bill ruled to be outside of Holyrood’s devolved powers

Now it would be possible to elaborate at some length on the wisdom and elegance of the Supreme Court’s judgment, which both confirms the essential legitimacy of Scottish Parliament’s decision to enact a Continuity Bill, and points out one section of the bill in particular, the one involving consent, which is beyond the Parliament’s powers, along with a few other paragraphs which have become so, thanks to a special amendment written into the UK’s EU Withdrawal Act after the Continuity Bill was passed.

What is most striking about this ruling, though, is the extent to which reactions to it immediately became polarised, with the Scottish Conservatives hailing the result as a well-deserved humiliation for the SNP, while the SNP and ‘Yes’ supporters immediately highlighted the Supreme Court’s recognition that Holyrood had the right to legislate in this matter, and that the British Government had changed the relevant UK legislation – “shifted the goalposts” – following the passage of the Bill.

The response, in other words, was dictated – like attitudes to Brexit at Westminster – by a series of visceral emotional decisions about where we belong, and whom we trust. To me, as a “yes” supporter, it seems pretty clear that a British Conservative Government some of whose supporters still think Ireland – after almost a century of independence – should “know its place”, cannot be trusted with the UK’s devolution settlement of 1998; that their treatment of Scottish opinion throughout the Brexit process has been contemptuous at best, and that their high-handed attitude puts our current devolved institutions at some risk.

Yet to a Conservative like Adam Tomkins MSP, the Scottish Tories’ constitutional spokesman, it seems equally clear that the SNP are just nasty schemers trying to break up the British state by underhand means, and that the Westminster Government are true-blue trusty sorts who, if they do remove powers from Holyrood, will only be doing it for our own good. He described the Supreme Court’s decision as “eviscerating” the Scottish Government’s bill, rejoiced that it had been “left in tatters”, and declared that Holyrood should simply bin it.

And the question that lingers, of course, is how any nation finally moves on from this kind of emotional deadlock. If we look across the sea to Ireland, we see a country that would not now dream of giving up its independence, even though it had to sacrifice a large dissident chunk of its territory to get it, and was so divided on competing visions of it that a bloody civil war ensued; but only time will tell, this time round, whether it is my gut feeling, or Adam Tomkins’s, that is on the right side of history. The common wisdom of Europe, after 1945, was to argue that it never pays, at least on our continent, to indulge in the politics of national identity; and that unity and compromise is always better than separation.

That settlement, though, depended on two things; on the implementation of enlightened postwar economic policies aimed at winning popular consent through full employment and mass prosperity, and on a dominant set of liberal values which allowed full expression and recognition of powerful national and regional identities within existing states. And once a state like the UK falls into the hands of a party and government which accepts neither of those preconditions, all bets are off; which is why the current spectacle at Westminster, increasingly driven by Conservative pro-Brexit extremists, is of such crucial importance to our future, and to the powers and resources future Scottish finance ministers will have to hand, when and if they rise to present their annual budgets for 2020, 2030, and all the years beyond.

READ MORE: Brexit: Imperial dreams leading to Little Britain – Kenny MacAskill

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Joyce McMillan"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843917.1544774651!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843917.1544774651!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Derek Mackay and Nicola Sturgeon helped return politics to something like normality this week (Picture: Greg Macvean)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Derek Mackay and Nicola Sturgeon helped return politics to something like normality this week (Picture: Greg Macvean)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843917.1544774651!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5796987730001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/edinburgh-student-21-jailed-for-smuggling-100k-of-cannabis-from-barcelona-1-4843965","id":"1.4843965","articleHeadline": "Edinburgh student, 21, jailed for smuggling £100k of cannabis from Barcelona","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544776267000 ,"articleLead": "

A University student sobbed as she was jailed yesterday after being caught bringing drugs worth £100,000 into Scotland in a suitcase.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843964.1544734296!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "editorial image"} ,"articleBody": "

Zixian Long, an Arts student at The University of Edinburgh, was caught with a suitcase containing 10kg of cannabis at Glasgow Airport last 
Hogmanay.

Long, 21, was returning from Barcelona when she was stopped by Border Force officers, who found ten 1kg vacuum packed bags stuffed with herbal cannabis.

The purple and green vacuum packed bags were wrapped in towels and were inside a suitcase that had been shrink wrapped.

Long denied importing drugs and being concerned in the supply of them and stood trial at Paisley Sheriff Court.

She denied being “knowingly concerned in the fraudulent evasion of the prohibition on the importation of controlled drugs” by importing herbal cannabis through the Renfrewshire airport on December 31 last year, in breach of Section 170(2) of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979.

Long also pled not guilty to a drug dealing charge, with prosecutors alleging she was “concerned in the supplying of a controlled drug” – in breach of Section 4(3)(b) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 – on the same date.

Giving evidence, Detective Constable Alan Ferguson of Police Scotland’s Statement of Opinion Unit, told the court: “Ten packages were removed from the suitcase.

“Each bag contained 1kg approximately and there were 10kg in total. The total potential value would be £100,000 – that’s based on £10 per 
gram.

“This would be subdivided many times before it got to 1kg deals.

“Wholesale it would be £4,000 for each package or £40,000 total.”

Speaking through an interpreter Long, who moved to the UK around ten years ago, said her mother had asked her if she wanted to go on a trip to Barcelona after being approached online by someone who offered to pay her costs if she brought luggage back.

She explained: “There was an opportunity to go to Barcelona for free and my mum asked me if I wanted to go with her.

“My mum barely travels. I had finished my homework, and it was my last term of 
University.”

Long said she and her mother went to “tourist attractions” in the city, including museums, and a Chinese man dropped off a suitcase for her to bring to Scotland at her hotel.

She explained: “She [my mum] said if I could bring this luggage back for them this time they would pay my trip.

“I wanted to do my mum a favour – I wasn’t thinking too much.

“I just thought, ‘I’ll help someone to take their luggage’. I am her only child and we have a tie of love with each 
other.”

The court also heard that Long did not know the combination of the suitcase lock and told officials it was not hers.

But a jury convicted her of all the charges and Long was remanded in custody ahead of sentencing next month by Sheriff Tom McCartney.

Long started crying when she was told by her defence team that she would be in prison for Christmas.

newsen@edinburghnews.com

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843964.1544734296!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843964.1544734296!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "editorial image","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "editorial image","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843964.1544734296!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5800772650001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/andy-simpson-scottish-firms-need-to-adopt-3d-vision-1-4843576","id":"1.4843576","articleHeadline": "Andy Simpson: Scottish firms need to adopt 3D vision","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544767212000 ,"articleLead": "

Why do we need 3D printing? is unfortunately not an ­uncommon response from Scottish companies when I ask if they’re interested in using additive manufacturing in their business.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843575.1544698713!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Andy Simpson, Managing Director of Angus 3D Solutions."} ,"articleBody": "

Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing as it’s fondly known, is a process of making three-dimensional solid objects from a digital file. The creation of a 3D-printed object is achieved using additive processes, where an object is created by laying down successive layers of material.

Companies wrongly presume they have to be involved in one of the ‘sexy’ manufacturing industries like ­aerospace, F1, automotive or ­medical to benefit or use this technology, which is far from reality. Additive manufacturing was used significantly in the creation of ­concept and ­prototype models for new designs and products.

Due to minimum materials choices and the high costs associated with the technology, these were seen as prohibitive to the majority of manufacturing companies and therefore the technology was deemed only suitable for the ‘sexy’ industries.

Scottish manufacturing can now learn from these industries and ­benefit from how they’ve used and developed the processes and ­materials used.

The technology is no longer limited to the manufacturing of concept-of-prototype models in plastics. It’s used to manufacture finished products in high-grade plastics, composites and metals.

The processes and materials are such a high grade that the final ­manufactured parts are commonly found and used in planes, cars, ­rockets and to replace bone in ­surgery.

The majority of Scotland’s ­manufacturers aren’t involved in these ‘sexy’ industries, but they are in some of the most innovative and world-impacting technologies. So, why do they think this technology isn’t for them? We need to challenge this outdated opinion and show how this technology can help most manufacturing industries in Scotland.

Three areas where additive ­manufacturing can benefit ­Scottish manufacturing are new design, ­manufacturing support and extending product life.

Producing concept and prototype parts to check design will always help to verify and aid communication before manufacture. This reduces design time, costs and, more importantly, allows changes to be identified quickly to help produce products that meet the operational requirement.

For the manufacture of final ­components which are customised, complex, lightweight and have the ability to consolidate parts – all using less materials and promoting design freedom – this technology enables us to focus on the function, increase ­frequency of design changes, refine the design, question manufacturing tradition and make products feature-rich.

One of the largest opportunities is in the manufacture of special ­tooling and jig and fixtures to aid production, inspection and assembly. Jigs and fixtures don’t have the glamour of final parts, but they are necessary in the majority of manufacturing ­businesses.

These are normally produced using subtractive manufacturing in ­traditional materials. 3D printing can use composite materials that are hard-wearing, lighter, quick to ­produce and, in most cases, at a ­lower cost.

This method also helps to release capacity on traditional machine tools, which increases the direct production hours from these assets. This is using 3D printing to aid, rather than replace, traditional machining processes and methods, improving efficiency and utilisation of traditional machine tools.

Additive manufacturing will also help Scotland develop a ‘circular economy’, which, in simple terms, means we make, use and remake as opposed to make, use and dispose. The ultimate goal is to keep products circulating in a high-value state of use for as long as possible and maximise resources.

One way this can be achieved is in the replacing or repairing of assets to extend their useful life. 3D ­printing can play a significant part in a circular economy as ­obsolete parts can be re-engineered and ­manufactured directly, or to ­produce patterns for investment casting or vacuum injection-moulding methods to produce the replacement components.

Scotland has an impressive ­engineering and manufacturing ­history. I believe to maintain and ­further develop this reputation we must embrace the latest technology and encourage the next generation to look at engineering and manufacturing as a career choice.

CeeD understands that manufacturing and the supply chain is increasingly changing and has been a great support in bringing companies together to explore how technologies like additive manufacturing can benefit them and allow Scotland’s ­manufacturing companies to remain competitive in a global market.

Andy Simpson, managing director, Angus 3D Solutions Ltd.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Andy Simpson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843575.1544698713!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843575.1544698713!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Andy Simpson, Managing Director of Angus 3D Solutions.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Andy Simpson, Managing Director of Angus 3D Solutions.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843575.1544698713!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/don-t-worry-indiana-i-ve-found-holy-grail-of-long-life-jim-duffy-1-4843921","id":"1.4843921","articleHeadline": "Don’t worry Indiana, I’ve found Holy Grail of long life – Jim Duffy","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544767200000 ,"articleLead": "

Jim Duffy used to hope he’d die before he got old, but he now thinks living into his Eighties might be all right and has discovered how to do it.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843919.1544729362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Don't drink too much wine from the Holy Grail ' or at least the prop used in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade ' and you could live a long time (Picture: Peter MacDiarmid/Getty)"} ,"articleBody": "

The old Indiana Jones movies with Harrison Ford were pretty epic events in their day. From Raiders of the Lost Ark to The Crystal Skull, these movies provided swashbuckling, testosterone-fuelled adventures that kept us, the audience, glued to the screen. Would Indiana win through against the odds, overcoming the baddies and cheats? The more I think about it, with all the spiders, creepy crawlies and snakes he had to deal with, it was like a precursor for I’m a Celebrity ... get me out of here!

My favourite Indiana Jones movie was Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade starring Sir Sean Connery. Long and short, they go after the Holy Grail, the cup of Christ, and if one drinks from it, one has eternal life. And living longer seems to be in vogue not only for Indiana, but for us all. Hence the current fascination with all sorts of potions and exercise routines to keep us fit into our nineties. Who needs the Holy Grail when we have Davina MCall DVDs?

The search for the Holy Grail, which in today’s money, means living a healthy life to the top end of the life expectancy charts cannot be achieved by drinking from an alleged mythical chalice. No, to become the fittest person in the old folks Home, one has to live a life that resembles a Cistercian monk’s. Just how happy the monks are is a matter for interpretation. But, let’s explore this ... for the sake of a longer life.

My own expectation of a long and healthy life was set at 55. Yes, I was pretty happy to be healthy to 55, then head downhill and be dead by 65. Some of you maybe thinking this was a wee bit too pessimistic, especially when the life expectancy for Scotland has males topping out at 71 years of age and in Spain, where I now live, a whopping 81 years.

But, I had reasons for my own personal life expectancy. I was more focussed on how useful me and my body would actually be at 71. I anticipated that my mind would deteriorate, my water works would be dysfunctional and my sex life would be, well, a Mills and Boon book at bedtime with my cocoa. I would dribble when I drank my tea and spill gravy down my front at the Christmas table, while others placed large napkins on my chest and stomach to catch it all.

READ MORE: You don’t need to pull on trainers to stay healthy, finds study

So, 65 sounded okay and probably a good estimation of my usefulness and mobility. But, and it’s now a big, huge, audacious and positive but, it seems I need to reset my calibrations for old age as I seem to be doing okay – if the latest health news is to be believed.

A recent study in the USA of 100,000 people over a 34-year period has highlighted the brutal truth behind living a long and healthily life. Like I said, it’s a bit monk-like! But, nevertheless it appears that there are five areas of our lives that we can proactively improve to add years to our time on this earth. And not just years of visiting doctors for statins and high-blood pressure pills either. So, I’m now going to provide you with a sort of Holy Grail of longer life. Notebooks out... here it is: eat a healthy diet; get regular exercise; maintain a healthy body weight; don’t smoke; and drink alcohol in moderation.

And there was you thinking it was going to be a ground-breaking, Indiana Jones ‘woohoo journey’ into good times. But alas, there is nothing new here. However, the research showed that people who made a conscious effort to abide by these lifestyle choices, lived longer. Indeed, much longer.

READ MORE: Millennials trying to be ‘too healthy’ with excessive exercise and supplements

Do those things and compared to people who don’t meet any of those criteria, if you’re a woman in the US, your life expectancy improves from 79 to 93.1 years. If you’re a man, your life expectancy increases from 75.5 to 87.6 years. Yes, women get 14 additional years and men get 12 more years.

So, there is the opportunity to live a longer and more healthy life well into your eighties.

I am smug enough to share with you that I think I’m doing okay with the first four on the list. But, the yummy Monestrall red wine that I now favour is probably setting me back a bit if I’m honest. But this leads to another eye-opener that the research has thrown up. Certainly, if you can live like a monk and adhere to all five long-life determinants, then bully for you.

But, the majority of us may only be able to achieve three out of the five. Researchers found a “dose-response relationship” between each individual healthy lifestyle behaviour and a reduced risk of early death. In non researcher-speak, that means any lifestyle improvements you make will positively impact your life expectancy. Bonus! A bit of good fortune that plays out better than three numbers in the National Lottery.

Making lifestyle choices is hard. It takes determination and discipline, hence my monk analogy. A couple of glasses of red wine is good, when compared to seven pints down the pub on a Friday and Saturday night.

Taking a 30-minute walk each day in the wind and rain isn’t easy and takes motivation. But, the research seems to show that these changes, when all put together, increase the opportunities for a longer, healthier life.

My question to you for today or this weekend: will you give serious thought to adopting at least three out the five healthy lifestyle choices?

If so, I wonder if the 87-year-old you will say – thanks!

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Jim Duffy"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843919.1544729362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843919.1544729362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Don't drink too much wine from the Holy Grail ' or at least the prop used in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade ' and you could live a long time (Picture: Peter MacDiarmid/Getty)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Don't drink too much wine from the Holy Grail ' or at least the prop used in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade ' and you could live a long time (Picture: Peter MacDiarmid/Getty)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843919.1544729362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/kevan-christie-what-plato-had-to-say-about-brexit-1-4843775","id":"1.4843775","articleHeadline": "Kevan Christie: What Plato had to say about Brexit","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544767200000 ,"articleLead": "

The European Court of Justice ruling that Brexit can be unilaterally halted by the UK, – meaning we can put a stop to our two-year bender and come home with our tail between our legs – should have led to parties in the street.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843774.1544715363!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Plato and Aristotle, right, chat about the dangers of Nigel Farage 2,378 years ago (Picture: Picture Post/Getty)"} ,"articleBody": "

It means the UK has our very own ‘get out of jail free’ card, allowing us to get back with the EU – provided we agree to behave, drink a bit less and do more jobs around the house. What an opportunity.

But no, rather than grasp this chance to jump into the liferaft, Theresa May and her kamikaze special attack unit decided to ignore the ruling and plough on with their own version of ‘Deal or No Deal’.

Off she went to get Angela Merkel telt over the Irish border backstop so she could eventually call a vote in the Commons that might have a chance of going through, thus avoiding an embarrassing defeat.

However, her failure to negotiate the car door on arrival in Germany left her with a bigger riddy than any gubbing she would face in Parliament, including the confidence vote.

This immediately put her on the back foot in terms of trying to renegotiate our messy divorce settlement and likely blew any chance she may have had of gaining custody of the Simply Red CDs. But she might still get that DVD of Funeral in Berlin.

I imagine she felt the same as a ScotRail passenger tasked with opening a train door with an outside handle, while a group of angry office workers wait to alight.

At this rate, May will be “coming to a garden centre near you shortly” to while away the time drinking coffee and eating traybakes when she is eventually handed her jotters.

Meanwhile, the Irish passport office has been inundated with Scots asking for their 80 Euros back after realising they were a tad hasty in pretending to be from the Emerald Isle, just to get past airport security a bit quicker.

“But I’ve never even been there, my grandad died before I was born and no I haven’t met my cousin Plunkett ... I don’t even like Guinness.” Of course, I jest but this Brexit malarkey is no laughing matter.

READ MORE: Brexit deal still in limbo as May refuses to name new vote date

As self-appointed spokesperson for ‘most people’ – in this case, the ones who voted for Remain – I’d like to say I did so in the belief that voting to stay in the European Union was the right thing to do.

Born and bred in the Athens of the North, I consider myself an enlightened Renaissance man of upper working-class stock. I can order both a coffee with milk and the bill in Spanish and have been to the Majorcan holiday resort of Santa Ponsa no less than 14 times. You don’t get more European than that.

However, my knowledge of the EU was scant to say the least and, if forced to name a Member of the European Parliament before the referendum, I would have said ... Nigel Farage and left it there. It was something to do with Ted Heath, that rang a bell in the back of my mind, and I always found the Sun headline ‘Up Yours Delors’ funny.

So, no I didn’t really have a clue what I was voting for other than to maintain the status quo.

This is why I find it a bit rich when fellow Remoaners belittle those who voted Leave with the standard accusation that they, like me, didn’t know what they were voting for.

Granted some of them didn’t have a clue and fell for the populist propaganda around the immigration issue and not wanting to let “that Isis” into the UK.

There was all the nonsense around migrants being military men of fighting age as opposed to 12-year-old bairns looking for shelter – so they must have been part of “that Isis”, looking to set up a caliphate in Sunderland. Here’s to you, Tommy Robinson.

READ MORE: EU has fun with Theresa May’s Brexit plight

Then there was the £350 million sent to the EU every week that could supposedly be spent on the NHS, according to Boris and the battle bus. A mere drop in the ocean – NHS Tayside chiefs would have spent that in a fortnight.

But there were genuine concerns around the make-up of the EU, seen by some as a bastion of corrupt neoliberalism as national populism swept across countries like Hungary, Italy, Poland and Austria before landing in the good old US of A.

No less a figure than Jeremy Corbyn (where’s he been hiding?) can barely disguise his contempt for the European Union and the current new version of Old Labour has concerns about the threat migration poses to skilled workers in the frozen north of England.

Of course, the real baddie in all of this is David Cameron.

‘Cam the Bam’ made the schoolboy error of asking the public what they thought. He offered them a choice to keep things as they were or opt for the specials board at the local Wetherspoons, which was offering homemade sticky toffee pudding and ice-cream with a hard Brexit.

This was an open goal to Vote Leave who were ahead of the curve in judging the public to be fed up with elites and feeling their elective representatives did not speak up for blue-collar workers or indeed no-collar workers in the shape of the so-called underclass.

Back in 360BC, Plato the Greek philosopher knew his onions when it came to referenda and the masses.

He believed that “a good decision is based on knowledge and not on a number” and was scared that a majority of people would make poor choices and could be too easily influenced by demagogues.

This is something characters like Farage and Trump have exploited to the maximum but old Plato predicted this kind of thing all those years ago. And yet people still express surprise at the results of the EU referendum and the US election.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Kevan Christie"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843774.1544715363!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843774.1544715363!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Plato and Aristotle, right, chat about the dangers of Nigel Farage 2,378 years ago (Picture: Picture Post/Getty)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Plato and Aristotle, right, chat about the dangers of Nigel Farage 2,378 years ago (Picture: Picture Post/Getty)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843774.1544715363!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5796987730001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/brexit-uk-politics-in-persistent-vegetative-state-feargal-cochrane-1-4843738","id":"1.4843738","articleHeadline": "Brexit: UK politics in persistent vegetative state – Feargal Cochrane","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544711589000 ,"articleLead": "

After the Prime Minister survived an attempt to oust her as Conservative party leader, Professor Feargal Cochrane says the UK must understand that there is gridlock in Government and the only things moving are the hands on the Brexit clock that are ticking inexorably towards the 29 March 2019.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843737.1544711586!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Theresa May is still in power, but British politics seems to be in a persistent vegetative state"} ,"articleBody": "

Theresa May won her confidence vote as leader of the Conservative Party by 200 votes to 117. In one sense, a win is a win and the Prime Minister can soldier on and tout her withdrawal agreement around the EU in the hope of getting some concessions that will make it more acceptable to her party.

But she is limping not striding forwards, her feet of clay dragging more obviously from the steps of Downing Street to the lectern outside the building. For a politician for whom humiliation is an almost weekly occurrence, her problems are only increasing and the Confidence vote last night has done nothing to help her move out of her political purgatory.

During the 2017 General Election when she became aware that things were beginning to unwind for her campaign, she plaintively exclaimed ‘Nothing has Changed – Nothing has Changed’. And the same could be said now. Nothing has changed. The Prime Minister remains the Prime Minister, Brexit still means Brexit – but that also means that there is no coherent policy and there is no viable route forwards.

READ MORE: Theresa May clings on but is urged to quit by Brexiteers

The current Withdrawal Agreement cannot command support within the Conservative Party, never mind the House of Commons and the minority government that is propped up by the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP). Theresa May effectively threw the DUP under the bus with a commitment to a legally binding backstop on the Irish border in the Withdrawal Agreement. But she was then forced to pull the vote in the face of a humiliating defeat, with the DUP left under the wheels of a bus that had stopped. Hardly surprising in this context that the DUP no longer trusts the government as far as it can throw it.

However, despite the soap opera at Westminster and the disarray in UK Brexit negotiations there are some relatively fixed dimensions to keep in mind.

There will not be a UK deal with the EU without a legally enforceable backstop on Ireland.

The EU will not penalise a state that is staying (Ireland) on behalf of one that is leaving (UK). This is something that UK negotiators do not really seem to understand.

The DUP red line on the Withdrawal Agreement is non-negotiable and unless there is a revised legal text on the backstop, they will not support this under any circumstances when it eventually comes before the House of Commons.

READ MORE: Brexit: Imperial dreams leading to Little Britain – Kenny MacAskill

Nothing has Changed – but everything has changed. The choice is now stark. It is boiling down to a choice between the current Withdrawal Agreement, a No Deal car crash, or an extension of Article 50 to allow a second referendum to take place on the Withdrawal Agreement or a vote to remain within the EU.

Theresa May will limp on, flogging a compromise Brexit policy that has no support, to negotiating partners who have little faith in her capacity to deliver it. UK politics is currently in a persistent vegetative state over Brexit, with no capacity to move forwards and no capacity to move backwards.

There is gridlock in government and the only thing moving are the hands on the Brexit clock that are ticking inexorably towards the 29 March 2019 when the UK will, by default, leave the European Union.’

Feargal Cochrane is vice chair of the Political Studies Association and professor of International Conflict Analysis at the University of Kent. He is director of the Conflict Analysis Research Centre and deputy head of the School of Politics and International Relations at Kent. His current research is examining the impact of Brexit on the peace process in Northern Ireland and its devolved institutions.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843737.1544711586!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843737.1544711586!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Theresa May is still in power, but British politics seems to be in a persistent vegetative state","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Theresa May is still in power, but British politics seems to be in a persistent vegetative state","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843737.1544711586!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/the-useless-quirks-of-evolution-that-help-prove-theory-ben-garrod-1-4843423","id":"1.4843423","articleHeadline": "The ‘useless’ quirks of evolution that help prove theory – Ben Garrod","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544710328000 ,"articleLead": "

Humans are the only animals to have a chin – it’s not quite clear what the protruding bone is for – and we also have a vestigial ‘third eyelid’, writes Ben Garrod.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843422.1544710324!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Survival of the unfittest? A peacock's tale may make it more vulnerable to predators, but surviving despite it helps demonstrate how 'fit' a potential mate is (Picture: Pedro Pardo/AFP/Getty)"} ,"articleBody": "

Evolution is a fascinating field but can be rife with misunderstanding. One misconception is that evolution has some innate sense of direction or purpose. In reality, evolution is a mindless, plan-free phenomenon, driven into endless possibilities by random mutations, the most successful of which win out.

People also often think that every aspect of every living creature has a function, that it helps the organism survive in some small way. But there are some areas of evolutionary biology where benefits are murkier and, in some instances, where traits seem to make no sense at all. This is the realm of sexual selection, vestigial traits and evolutionary spandrels.

As important as the concept of survival of the fittest is to evolution, there are many examples that seem to undermine this idea. In fact, various aspects of evolutionary biology may seem counterintuitive and could even be seen as a reason to reject evolution as a whole. In fact, they strengthen our understanding rather than diminish it. Here’s how.

Many species invest heavily in camouflage and other means of blending into the surroundings to avoid predators. So the physically heavy and downright ostentatious plumage of birds of paradise, peacocks and many other birds seems like a clear invitation to be eaten. But crucially they help these birds pass on their genes because they increase their chances of attracting a mate.

This is what’s known as sexual selection at its finest. It strengthens the theory of evolution in that these seemingly weaker individuals are actually showing how well they can do in the face of adversity. It’s the evolutionary equivalent of using a pretty over-confident dating profile to impress potential partners.

READ MORE: Scientists find problems that come from evolution

When an anatomical structure appears frankly inept, it is probably a vestigial trait. This is a feature that no longer does whatever made it advantageous enough to evolve in the first place. If we could embody evolution as a person, then he or she would be creative but inherently lazy. If something is not being used then why bother maintaining it? It’s hard to say why they haven’t disappeared altogether but give it another million years and perhaps they will.

Some snakes, for example, still show vestigial traits harking back to their four-legged ancestry. Male pythons have little claw-like structures towards the tail, which, although they aid courtship, are all that remain of their hindlimbs.

Some cave fish have, over generations, lost most of the components of their eyes because sight uses up a lot of energy and isn’t helpful when you live in complete darkness. Many flightless birds, such as penguins and Galapagos flightless cormorants, have wings so small that they are effectively redundant in terms of flying.

Closer to home, the human appendix is a good example of a vestigial trait (although there’s now some evidence it may not be useless after all). But there is a weirder one, the plica semilunaris. The next time you look into the eyes of a loved one (it’s more awkward with a stranger on the bus), look at that little pink, triangular bit on the inside of each eye.

It’s not completely vestigial, as it helps ensure that tears drain properly and gives a slightly greater range of movement, but that’s not its original function. Long ago, when we shared a recent ancestry with birds and other reptiles, this little structure would have formed a nictating membrane, or “third eyelid”, to provide further protection to our eyes. So, although we have lost this clear, extra eyelid, evolution has upcycled it for another use.

READ MORE: Loch Ness monster cited by US schools as evidence that evolution is myth

Spandrels are in many ways, the rarest and hardest to see “weird” evolutionary quirks. The word comes from an architectural term for the triangular sections between arches in older, usually fancy, buildings. These zones were often ornately decorated but incidental to the real function of the structure of the building.

An evolutionary spandrel is a physical structure or behavioural characteristic that is a by-product from some other functional adaptation. But despite some apparent examples, truly useless spandrels are hard to find within evolutionary biology. One well-studied example is seen in an island-dwelling population of Italian wall lizards (Podarcis sicula), which spend less time basking in the sun than their mainland cousins. This behaviour can be seen as a spandrel because there’s no obvious advantage to it. Scientists have proposed it’s a by-product of the lizards’ evolution of increased levels of aggression, sexual activity and food intake. This has also led to more active melanocortin receptors, part of the hormone system that works in response to sunlight, and so the lizards don’t need to bask so much.

One genuine exception is something that defines our species as modern human beings: the chin. No other animals, or even extinct human relatives like Neanderthals, have one. As human diets changed, the bones and muscles in our jaws became smaller so we didn’t waste energy on them but we were left with a protruding bone at the bottom of the face. And no one has come up with a wholly convincing reason why.

Although the chin throws a spandrel in the works, there is nearly always a reason or, at least, an explanation for the myriad traits we see across biology. A better understanding of these evolutionary obscurities paves the way for a deeper understanding of the complex factors and drivers which influence the natural world around us.

Ben Garrod is a fellow in animal and environmental biology at Anglia Ruskin University. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original, headlined These ‘useless’ quirks of evolution are actually evidence for the theory.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Ben Garrod"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843422.1544710324!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843422.1544710324!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Survival of the unfittest? A peacock's tale may make it more vulnerable to predators, but surviving despite it helps demonstrate how 'fit' a potential mate is (Picture: Pedro Pardo/AFP/Getty)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Survival of the unfittest? A peacock's tale may make it more vulnerable to predators, but surviving despite it helps demonstrate how 'fit' a potential mate is (Picture: Pedro Pardo/AFP/Getty)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843422.1544710324!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/calum-duncan-life-on-the-ocean-wave-needs-to-be-protected-now-for-future-generations-1-4842264","id":"1.4842264","articleHeadline": "Calum Duncan: Life on the ocean wave needs to be protected now for future generations","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544704320000 ,"articleLead": "

From the air we breathe to the food we eat, Scotland needs seas full of life. Yet they are struggling. With the tide of ocean plastics awareness, resistance to mechanically stripping ­pristine kelp forests, community monitoring of scallop dredge damage in Loch Carron, Firth of Lorn and Loch Gairloch and a growing consensus for overhauling aquaculture, more and more people realise this.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842263.1544704316!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Calum Duncan Head of Conservation Scotland, Marine Conservation Society Convener, Scottish Environment LINK's Marine Group"} ,"articleBody": "

Scotland’s seas are home to ­thousands of species, including ­commercially-important fish and shellfish and charismatic whales, dolphins, seals, seabirds and basking sharks, all supporting livelihoods and coastal communities.

Seagrass meadows, kelp forests, cold water coral reefs, rich burrowed sediments, maerl, flameshell, native oyster and horsemussel beds are the engine-room, storing carbon that would otherwise contribute to climate change.

Our seas also provide space to relax, explore and exercise, to swim, ­snorkel, dive, sail and walk beside. However, they need help. Climate change, overfishing, unsustainable development, invasive species, noise and litter are pushing them beyond environmental limits.

Across Scotland, coastal communities, industry and environment groups alike, have called for better. The Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 overhauled an outdated licensing ­system and enshrined duties to protect and enhance Scotland’s seas, deliver ­sustainable ­development, mitigate and adapt to climate change and establish a National Marine Plan and Marine Protected Area (MPA) network.

In 2014, 30 new nature conservation MPAs were created. In 2016, fisheries protection measures were introduced in the 16 most vulnerable inshore sites and a large harbour porpoise site submitted to the EU. In 2017, the Loch Carron emergency MPA was established and a Government commitment to scoping a deepwater marine reserve made.

But progress has slowed. Consultation on fisheries measures for a further 17 inshore sites is expected early next year and measures for 18 offshore sites long-submitted by the Scottish Government still await formal EU approval. Many therefore remain at risk of being “paper parks”.

Known gaps in the MPA ­network also exist, including for birds, whales, dolphins and basking sharks, as well as for white-beaked dolphins, spiny lobsters and additional sites for the critically endangered common skate.

In January 2018, a Budget deal was secured to ensure four much-needed MPAs would be consulted on, now postponed until early 2019. Whatever the timescale, key to success will be ensuring sites are protected, concerns over which have been raised with reported incursions of scallop dredgers into protected sites, and effective monitoring of seabed health to gauge if measures are working. The Scottish Government is due to report on Scotland’s MPA network to Parliament by the end of the month.

Recovery beyond MPAs is also needed and the National Marine Plan is crucial. In April 2017, scallop dredging damage to Loch Carron flameshell beds activated a policy requiring that the national status of Priority Marine Features (PMFs) must not be significantly impacted.

An emergency MPA, containing what is possibly the world’s largest flameshell bed, was subsequently established and the Scottish Government committed to improve protection for 11 PMFS at greatest risk from fishing outside MPAs, with a ­consultation due next year.

The National Marine Plan also guides regional marine planning, an important mechanism for inshore recovery, and 11 marine regions have been identified. However, only Shetland and the Firth of Clyde are actively developing draft plans, with Orkney anticipated next. Loch Carron also underlined a need to modernise inshore fishing, with comprehensive vessel monitoring and traceability.

As pressure from industries such as aquaculture and marine tourism grows, the need for a precautionary and ecosystem-based approach has never been greater.

During this Year of Young People, a survey recorded that 11 to 26 year olds thought our seas should be ­protected but that more effort was needed.

Announcing the results at the Sea Scotland 2018 conference, Jack Dudgeon, vice chair and member of the Scottish Youth Parliament, reminded us that young people care about the environment and that they will live with the implications for the longest time.

As we approach the end of 2018 and near 2020, a target ‘super’ year for many important international commitments, opportunities to boost the health of Scotland’s seas must be grasped.

Calum Duncan, head of ­Conservation Scotland, Marine Conservation Society, convener, Scottish Environment LINK’s Marine Group.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Calum Duncan"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4842263.1544704316!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842263.1544704316!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Calum Duncan Head of Conservation Scotland, Marine Conservation Society Convener, Scottish Environment LINK's Marine Group","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Calum Duncan Head of Conservation Scotland, Marine Conservation Society Convener, Scottish Environment LINK's Marine Group","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4842263.1544704316!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/parts-of-scottish-brexit-bill-ruled-to-be-outside-holyrood-s-devolved-powers-1-4843515","id":"1.4843515","articleHeadline": "Parts of Scottish Brexit bill ruled to be outside Holyrood’s devolved powers","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544697308000 ,"articleLead": "

Both the UK and Scottish Governments claim they have been vindicated after the Supreme Court partially upheld a Brexit bill passed by Holyrood, which is at the heart of a row over an alleged ‘power grab’.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843514.1544695775!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A ruling will be made at the Supreme Court in London today"} ,"articleBody": "

The Supreme Court unanimously ruled that except for one section, the Scottish Parliament’s Continuity Bill - which asserts Holyrood’s authority over 24 disputed powers in devolved areas that are returning from Brussels after Brexit - is within the Scottish Parliament’s competence.

Only Section 17, which would require UK ministers to get the consent of their Scottish counterparts before passing subordinate legislation in devolved areas, was found to be outside Holyrood’s competence.

However, because the UK Withdrawal Act, which brings EU law into British statute, received Royal Assent while the Continuity Bill was challenged to the Supreme Court, judges in London found that several more sections of the Scottish bill are now also outside Holyrood’s competence.

READ MORE: Theresa May clings on but is urged to quit by Brexiteers

Responding to the judgement, the Scottish Government accused London of “constitutional vandalism” and having “changed the rules of the game midway through the match.”

The UK Withdrawal Act was added to Schedule 4 of the Scotland Act, a list of legislation that is ‘protected’ and cannot be modified by the Scottish Parliament.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted that the ruling was “an important vindication” for the Scottish Government.

“With the exception of just one section, the Scottish Continuity Bill WAS within Scottish Parliament competence at point of introduction,” she added.

Scottish Secretary David Mundell said: “The Supreme Court has provided much-needed legal clarity that the Continuity Bill goes beyond the powers of the Scottish Parliament.

“This demonstrates clearly that it was the right thing for the UK Government to refer the Bill to the Court.

“It is now for the Scottish Government to consider how to proceed, and we hope Holyrood will take a pragmatic approach and work constructively with us as we leave the EU.”

The Scottish Government’s Constitutional Affairs Secretary Michael Russell said parts of the Holyrood bill had been “thwarted as a result of steps taken by the UK Government”.

“For the first time ever, UK Law Officers delayed an act of the Scottish Parliament from becoming law by referring it to the Supreme Court,” Mr Russell said.

“Then the UK Government, for the first time ever, invited the UK Parliament to pass a Bill which they knew would cut the powers of the Scottish Parliament without its consent.

“The UK Government changed the rules of the game midway through the match.

“This is an act of constitutional vandalism but that does not take away from the fact this judgment makes clear MSPs were perfectly entitled to prepare Scotland’s laws for Brexit at the time this Bill was passed. The UK Government’s arguments have been clearly rejected.

“We will now reflect on this judgment and discuss with other parties before coming back to Parliament to set out the best way forward.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "PARIS GOURTSOYANNIS"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843514.1544695775!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843514.1544695775!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "A ruling will be made at the Supreme Court in London today","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A ruling will be made at the Supreme Court in London today","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843514.1544695775!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"1496158247544"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/how-to-fix-the-nhs-and-scotland-s-health-catherine-calderwood-1-4843424","id":"1.4843424","articleHeadline": "How to fix the NHS and Scotland’s health – Catherine Calderwood","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544680800000 ,"articleLead": "

Improving cancer treatment and mental health care, persuading people to take more exercise, and ensuring parents and babies are healthier are among the most important steps that could be taken to improve the NHS, writes Catherine Calderwood, Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4834730.1544645281!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Investing in the health of babies is a wise move (Picture: PA)"} ,"articleBody": "

“If you had all the money in the world and were in charge of the NHS, what would you invest in?” – a question asked at a medical school interview this week. Not an easy one to answer but perhaps timely given the increased investment in the NHS in Scotland announced in the budget yesterday.

I wonder what I would have answered as Chief Medical Officer for Scotland. Our population is aging – by 2035 we will have 82 per cent more people aged 75 and over. Increased life expectancy is a good thing – I do not agree with the portrayal of the aging population as a ‘burden’ – and it is a testament to improved healthcare, but we will need more and different health and social care to ensure people live longer healthier lives. On average, 80 per cent of a person’s lifetime NHS spend is in the last two years of life.

Cancer rates are increasing in part because we are living longer – we have improved rates of survival for many cancers, but there is more to be done in earlier detection, access to treatment and research.

READ MORE: NHS Scotland is ‘not financially sustainable’, says watchdog

What about preventing ill health? The first professor of transport and health in the UK, Adrian Davies, was recently appointed at Napier University, recognising the key links between active transport, improving health and the unhealthy environment which exists for many due to our traditional forms of transport.

What can be done to encourage people to exercise more? The recommended daily amount is 30 minutes of moderate activity or 150 minutes a week for adults. The good news is that many of us are doing this. However almost one in five do not walk for more than 20 minutes even once a month – yet it is a simple, free way of improving the risks of diabetes, hypertension, cancer, dementia and improving mood and sleep.

A bank in Ukraine is offering preferential interest rates to those who have an active lifestyle – as measured by step count – and in Singapore employees in high-rise blocks are given rewards at the end of the month if they use the stairs, not the lifts.

The decreasing stigma around mental health issues has led to a positive increase in those coming forward for help. Mental ill-health affects whole families, employment, finances and physical health and we know those with chronic ill-health suffer from more anxiety and depression. We still do not have parity of services for those with mental health issues.

READ MORE: Hayley Matthews: A bit more milk of human kindness for NHS please

Perhaps I can give a steer as to how an obstetrician would have answered that question. The importance of the first 1,000 days of life, including that important time before birth, is beginning to be recognised more widely. Good health of mothers and fathers leaves a lasting legacy for the baby and adult of the future. The knowledge that many adult diseases, such as those mentioned above, originate before we are born is more than 40 years old. The chances of an adult whose mother was obese during her pregnancy having a heart attack aged 50 is five times higher than if the mother was a normal weight.

Anxiety and depression in pregnancy and after birth can result in poor bonding and lead to the risk of mental ill-health for the child. Prevention of preterm birth would save millions of pounds in intensive care and longer term health needs. Investment in the early years of life, health, education, and good parenting, has been shown in studies to give a return of at least eight times what is invested, largely in future earning power for the child. The health of the nation in our hands ... what would you choose?

Catherine Calderwood is Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer and is on Twitter @CathCalderwood1

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Catherine Calderwood"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4834730.1544645281!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4834730.1544645281!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Investing in the health of babies is a wise move (Picture: PA)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Investing in the health of babies is a wise move (Picture: PA)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4834730.1544645281!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/brexit-imperial-dreams-leading-to-little-britain-kenny-macaskill-1-4843420","id":"1.4843420","articleHeadline": "Brexit: Imperial dreams leading to Little Britain – Kenny MacAskill","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544680800000 ,"articleLead": "

As Brexiteers try to bully Ireland – a country where the Famine is imprinted on people’s collective memory – with talk of food shortages, the UK is trashing its international reputation and heading not to a new Golden Age of Empire but to state best described as Little Britain, writes Kenny MacAskill.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843419.1544689930!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Little Britain stars Matt Lucas and David Walliams take to the stage at the Point Theatre in Dublin (Picture: ShowBizIreland/Getty Images)"} ,"articleBody": "

“Oh, the Empire it is finished, no foreign lands to seize, So, the greedy eye of England, is turning towards the seas” is a verse from an Irish republican ditty from a few years back.

I was put in mind of it by comments from a Tory MP about using a threat of food shortages as leverage against Ireland in the Brexit negotiations. Whilst Priti Patel didn’t threaten starvation, the comments were crass, insensitive and downright disgusting. Imprinted on the Irish collective memory is the Famine and it was caused by Britain’s callous indifference.

The real rage is that Ireland, backed by the EU, isn’t susceptible to British threats, let alone Cromwellian commands. The Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, is probably not as well known as previous holders of that office but possesses more clout than any in Irish history.

Patel’s attitude simply replicated that of so many other Brexiteers. As Theresa May has become more demented, the Little Englanders have turned more rabid. The insults have been flying from Nigel Farage’s disgraceful comments towards leading politicians in the European Parliament to the unseemly war sentiments by so many others against entire nations from Germany to France.

The unbridled arrogance of those seeking the “New Golden Age of British Empire” has seen them cast derision and scorn at all and sundry. If it’s not “Croppy Lie Down” then it’s “hop off Johnny Foreigner” that’s carelessly bandied about without a thought as to consequences. No wonder racism has been on the rise, when venting your spleen seems second nature to many leading political figures. And whilst May herself has been tempered in her comments her actions as Home Secretary on immigration set the tone.

READ MORE: Brexit chaos could snuff out signs that austerity is finally ending – leader comment

Yet the great irony is that whatever the final outcome of Brexit, restoration of the glory days of Empire there won’t be and Britain will be diminished and tarnished. The cause of that? Those self-same zealots for whom Britain’s rightful place in the world isn’t duly recognised. It wasn’t the return of sovereignty they sought, but the right to command.

So instead, we’ve been subjected to a Prime Minister jetting to European cities pleading for something, anything, to provide a fig leaf for her nakedness. But the door’s as firmly shut now as it was briefly in her car when meeting Chancellor Merkel. An act of utter futility and total pointlessness, as the EU’s position was stated at the outset and has been adhered to consistently.

The problem has not been their intransigence nor even Theresa May’s failure to properly negotiate as the European Research Group of hard-Brexiteer Conservatives suggests. Frankly, she’s appeared less maladroit and indeed less downright useless than Davis, Raab or Fox.

Meanwhile, European leaders from countries large or small have appeared statesman-like, acted diplomatically and their negotiator Michel Barnier has oozed more class and intellect individually than the British team collectively.

For Britain has come up against not just realpolitik but its real place in the modern world. Britain is no longer the major power it once was. Nothing is going to bring that back and certainly not leaving the EU, where power can be increased and prestige enhanced, as the Irish have shown. The clues though had been there for decades and not just with long overdue decolonialisation, after the war.

From being bailed out by the IMF in the 1970s to more recent times with American involvement in supposedly “sovereign affairs” of Northern Ireland, power has waned. In some ways, it’s been harder for Britain than many other countries, as most Empires collapsed after war or revolution. That hasn’t been the case with Britain where it’s just slowly sunk. But, gone it has. That ought to have afforded advantages not least in less upset and dislocation.

READ MORE: Labour warns UK at risk as Scots pick independence over Brexit

Britain was well-placed in the EU. London especially but Britain more generally were the preferred places for inward investment. Now, the Japanese and Chinese are incredulous at the self-harm inflicted. And the Indians are gobsmacked that it was simply assumed they would welcome back the Raj, rather than enjoy being able to dictate the terms of trade. Eastern Europe looked to London through choice, as well as being a bulwark against Berlin and English, not French, became the lingua franca of the 28 EU countries.

But actions have consequences and that applies as much in politics, as in ordinary life. It’s not just sterling that’s crashed but fondness for Britain and it’s not just investment that’s ebbing but respect. Whatever the Brexit outcome, Europe and indeed the world will look differently upon the UK. That’ll be damaging for the economy and for influence, whether through direct say or soft power.

World leaders have looked on incredulously as British politics has become dysfunctional, with the opposition as inept and divided as the administration. The supposed Mother of Parliaments simply looks like a House of Contempt, and Brexit Britain has replaced Italy as the failing European democracy to scorn.

Admiration and friendships are also being lost. I remember ribbing a young East European about his support for the English football team and reverence for London. It was real and genuine, for him it was the country he admired. But no more, as his own country’s economic well-being is threatened and obvious contempt heaped upon it.

Likewise, I recall a friend’s elderly Irish father demurring at my condemnation of British actions in his native land, expressing gratitude instead for what he had received having left a poverty-stricken country. Irish self-confidence, that has grown and grown despite the Celtic Tigers crash, has retained a genuine warmth towards Britain, even if mixed with some laughter. But now it’s turning to contempt, even if not yet dislike.

There’s some schadenfreude for Scots like me that never bought into the glory days of Britain. It being neither as benign nor great as portrayed and the Indyref showed its capacity for ruthlessness when threatened.

But there’s still been much to celebrate with many friendships and much-shared history. Even if Britain was not so Great, it’s still tragic that it’s now Little Britain that beckons.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Kenny MacAskill"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843419.1544689930!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843419.1544689930!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Little Britain stars Matt Lucas and David Walliams take to the stage at the Point Theatre in Dublin (Picture: ShowBizIreland/Getty Images)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Little Britain stars Matt Lucas and David Walliams take to the stage at the Point Theatre in Dublin (Picture: ShowBizIreland/Getty Images)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843419.1544689930!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5796987730001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/brexiteer-fantasies-are-wrecking-britain-leader-comment-1-4843451","id":"1.4843451","articleHeadline": "Brexiteer fantasies are wrecking Britain – leader comment","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544680800000 ,"articleLead": "

The attempt to oust Theresa May as leader of the Conservative Party was bound to fail from the start and was nothing but a meaningless distraction.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843450.1544690240!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arch-Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg's efforts to oust Theresa May were in vain (Picture: John Stillwell/PA Wire)"} ,"articleBody": "

They were doomed to fail from the start, they knew it, yet still they sallied forth to make a stand for Britain. Perhaps Jacob Rees-Mogg shed a patriotic tear as he put a cross in the box marked “I DO NOT HAVE confidence in Theresa May as Leader of the Conservative Party”.

The trouble is that a guide to good governance is seldom, if ever, to be found in the pages of historical fiction. Fighting battles you know you are going to lose is not brave, it’s stupid, whether they are physical or political.

So the failed attempt by a minority of Conservative MPs to unseat the Prime Minister – at a critical moment in the Brexit process – was nothing more than an utterly unhelpful distraction. The public will wake up today with May still in Downing Street, still struggling to win even small concessions over the Irish backstop from the EU, and trying keep her splintering party together. And people are likely to wonder, “what was that all about?”

READ MORE: Brexit: Tory chaos shows need for general election – Danielle Rowley MP

If it demonstrates anything, it is an attitude that is all-too-common among hardcore Brexiteers: warnings by respected economists about the adverse effects of a no-deal Brexit are dismissed airily as “Project Fear” despite the lack of rigorous analysis to the contrary; blind faith is preferred to expert advice; romantic fantasy believed over hard truths.

These are the people who sold the country an unachievable dream and now complain it has turned into a nightmare. The people who, in their own minds but nowhere else, would go to Brussels, issue their demands and watch the EU do its best to please.

Back in the real world, a weakened May continues to lead almost by default as the UK stumbles towards an accidental no-deal Brexit that could wreck our economy for years.

READ MORE: Brexit exposes failings of UK’s political elite – Paris Gourtsoyannis

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843450.1544690240!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843450.1544690240!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Arch-Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg's efforts to oust Theresa May were in vain (Picture: John Stillwell/PA Wire)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arch-Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg's efforts to oust Theresa May were in vain (Picture: John Stillwell/PA Wire)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843450.1544690240!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5796987730001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/eu-has-fun-with-theresa-may-s-brexit-plight-1-4843428","id":"1.4843428","articleHeadline": "EU has fun with Theresa May’s Brexit plight","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544646070000 ,"articleLead": "

Theresa May criss-crossing the continent on Tuesday in a bid to save her Brexit deal before returning home to find she had to save her own job, gave Europe’s newspapers the opportunity to offer their view of British politics yesterday.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843427.1544646067!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "German Chancellor and chairwoman of the German Christian Democratic Union (CDU), Angela Merkel. Picture: AP Photo/Michael Sohn"} ,"articleBody": "

Some had a bit of fun with it. France’s august broadsheet Le Monde noted the metaphor in the Prime Minister finding herself trapped in the back of a limo with German Chancellor Angela Merkel waiting for her at the end of the red carpet. “The mean spirited will have seen an allegory for the impasse Theresa May finds herself in,” the paper noted. Any concessions Mrs May will get on her Brexit deal would be merely “cosmetic”, it added on its front page. Under a picture of Merkel and May chatting happily, Germany’s Die Welt dubbed them the “ministers for small talk” - a reflection on limited results the pair achieved.

With the Prime Minister facing firm rejection from Europe and possible ejection from Number 10, the tone of many other newspapers was bleak. The Belgian financial journal L’Echo suggested the UK “doesn’t have a lot of hope” of getting anything out of the EU, “which declared with a single voice that there won’t be any renegotiation”.

Berlin’s Der Der Tagesspiegel’s lead story recounted the day’s events under the headline “Theresa May alone in Europe”.

Like many several European newspapers, Amsterdam’s Het Parool features a picture of Mrs May and EU Commission President sharing a joke and clasping hands warmly as they met in Brussels on Tuesday night - but correctly predicts that the Prime Minister’s “fate is in the hands of her party”.

Ireland’s newspapers carried front page news of a visit to Dublin that never materialised as the Prime Minister was forced to stay home and fight a confidence vote. The Irish Examiner’s splashed on its assessment that the proposed Brexit deal is dead: “No deal edges closer as May bid rejected”.

And Denmark’s Politiken summed up the message over a picture of Mrs May that stretches across its front page: “Nein - No Way - Nee - Non”. A clear message in any language.

Meanwhile outside the EU, media in the United States took time out from covering the ups and downs of the Trump presidency to cast a glance across the Pond.

“Theresa May, facing the end, makes a last ditch appeal for moderation,” wrote the New York Times.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843427.1544646067!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843427.1544646067!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "German Chancellor and chairwoman of the German Christian Democratic Union (CDU), Angela Merkel. Picture: AP Photo/Michael Sohn","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "German Chancellor and chairwoman of the German Christian Democratic Union (CDU), Angela Merkel. Picture: AP Photo/Michael Sohn","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843427.1544646067!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/parents-warned-of-slime-toys-health-risk-to-children-1-4843374","id":"1.4843374","articleHeadline": "Parents warned of slime toys health risk to children","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544640554000 ,"articleLead": "

Slime and putty toys sold by major retailers including Smyths Toys, Argos and Hamleys could pose a health risk to children, an investigation has claimed.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843373.1544640550!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Children playing with the blue slime being sold by major UK toy retailers"} ,"articleBody": "

Six products tested by consumer watchdog Which? found that the products exceeded the safe levels of the chemical borax as stipulated by EU regulations.

Over-exposure can cause skin irritation, diarrhoea, vomiting and cramps in the short term. According to the European Commission, exposure to very high levels of boron may also impair fertility and could cause harm to an unborn child in pregnant women.

The EU safety limit is 300mg/kg for slime and 1200mg/kg for putty. However, retailers have claimed that products which Which? deems to be slime are actually putty, meaning that the borax contents is not over the limit.

Frootiputti, produced by Goobands and for sale in Hamley’s, had four times the permitted limit, according to the Which? investigation, while HGL’s Ghostbusters slime, which can be bought in Smyths Toys Superstores, had more than three times the limit. Both manufacturers have disagreed with Which?’s categorisation of their products as slime. However, Hamleys said it had removed the Frootiputti product from sale “as a precautionary measure”.

Fun foam, made by Zuru Oosh and sold by Argos, is classified as putty. With a level of 1700mg/kg, it also failed the testing, as it exceeded the 1200mg/kg limit.

Nikki Stopford, director of research and publishing at Which?, said: “Slime will feature in many kids’ letters to Santa this Christmas, however we’ve found more worrying evidence that children could be put at risk by these toys.

“Parents should have confidence that the products that they buy for their children will be safe, but our latest investigation has uncovered harmful products being sold even by big retailers.”

She added: “Again, we’re calling on manufacturers to stop making unsafe products, and for the government and retailers to step up and do a much better job of ensuring only safe products get into people’s homes and into the hands of children.”

Which? has passed its findings to the Office for Product Safety and Standards. It has also informed manufacturers and retailers about the results, asking for them to be removed from sale.

A spokesman for HGL said: “Our product passes EN71 without any issues. H Grossman Ltd is a responsible and safety conscious company with 73 years of experience.”

A spokeswoman for Hamley’s said: “As a precautionary measure, we have made the decision to remove all Goobands Frootiputti from our stores while we investigate this matter further.”

Smyths added: “Children’s safety is our first priority. ‘Ghostbuster Slime’ was supplied to us by the UK distributor H Grossman who have provided us with test results which indicate that the product is within safety limits.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843373.1544640550!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843373.1544640550!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Children playing with the blue slime being sold by major UK toy retailers","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Children playing with the blue slime being sold by major UK toy retailers","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843373.1544640550!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/brexit-poll-britons-back-theresa-may-to-stay-as-prime-minister-1-4843295","id":"1.4843295","articleHeadline": "Brexit poll: Britons back Theresa May to stay as Prime Minister","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544633772000 ,"articleLead": "

Britons have backed Theresa May to stay on as Prime Minister based on a new poll.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The latest YouGov poll has backed Theresa May staying in power. Picture: Matt Dunham/AFP/Getty Images"} ,"articleBody": "

Forty per cent of respondents to the latest YouGov poll said the Brexit deal could not be bettered by whoever would replace Mrs May if she lost a vote of no-confidence.

Conservative MPs will decide Theresa May’s fate in tonight’s vote.

READ MORE: Theresa May leadership challenge LIVE: Prime Minister faces confidence vote

However, a snap poll carried out today has revealed the British public want the incumbent to stay by a margin of 40 per cent to 34 per cent.

A total of 58 per cent of Conservative voters polled said Mrs May should stay on compared with 28 per cent who wanted her replaced.

Mrs May’s handling of Brexit also convinced 45 per cent of surveyed Leave voters she should remain in place. Only 38 per cent wanted her axed as the country’s leader.

Forty-three per cent of Remain voters also want to keep Mrs May compared to 31 per cent voting for a replacement.

Labour party voters were the only category to favour a change of leadership, with 44 per cent backing a change. A total of 30 per cent want May to continue in the post.

A total of 3,093 Britons were polled in the survey.

Of the sample, 1,068 were Conservative voters. Just 270 of the people polled were from Scotland.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon criticises ‘self-centred’ Tories over leadership contest

Asked whether or not a different Conservative leader would be able to negotiate a better Brexit deal, the majority (57 per cent) of respondents said no.

Just 18 per cent believe a replacement, which would come from the likes of senior ministers Sajid Javid, Amber Rudd, Michael Gove, Dominic Raab or Boris Johnson, would be able to strike a better withdrawal agreement with the European Union.

No voting group said anyone else could get a better deal, including the 59 per cent of Conservative voters and 53 per cent of Leave voters who think Mrs May’s deal won’t be improved under new management.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The latest YouGov poll has backed Theresa May staying in power. Picture: Matt Dunham/AFP/Getty Images","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The latest YouGov poll has backed Theresa May staying in power. Picture: Matt Dunham/AFP/Getty Images","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/celebrity/harry-potter-star-contests-ruling-over-1-million-tax-refund-1-4843256","id":"1.4843256","articleHeadline": "Harry Potter star contests ruling over £1 million tax refund","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544632339000 ,"articleLead": "

Harry Potter film star Rupert Grint is challenging a ruling denying him a £1 million tax refund.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843255.1544632335!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Harry Potter star Rupert Grint. Picture: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images"} ,"articleBody": "

A tax tribunal previously rejected the actor’s appeal against a HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) block on him using a change in accounting dates to shield his earnings from a higher tax rate.

The 30-year-old, who is calculated to have earned around £24 million from playing the character Ron Weasley in the Potter film franchise, has now taken his legal battle to the Upper Tribunal in London.

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At a hearing today, Mr Grint’s barrister Patrick Soares said the previous judge had applied the wrong legal test when deciding his case.

In an August 2016 ruling, Judge Barbara Mosedale described how Mr Grint had followed advice from tax advisers Clay & Associates to change his accounting date so that 20 months of income would fall to be taxed in 2009/10.

The judge said Mr Grint wished to bring forward to the earlier year liability for payments on eight months’ worth of income otherwise due in the tax year 2010/2011 – the year the top rate of tax rose from 40 per cent to 50 per cent.

Her ruling added if the date change had been accepted it would have led to a 10 per cent saving on income – about £1 million, according to Mr Grint’s accountants.

The judge stressed it was not part of HMRC’s case that Mr Grint, who admitted at the earlier hearing that his knowledge of his financial affairs was “quite limited”, was involved in tax avoidance.

She dismissed Mr Grint’s appeal, finding he had failed to show a valid change in accounting dates because he did not have accounts showing the correct accounting period for the change.

But Mr Soares said: “In this case, the judge had really created a new test in determining what the accounts of the trader is for the purposes of income tax.”

HMRC is contesting the appeal, arguing the judge made no error of law.

Mrs Justice Rose and Judge Jonathan Richards are expected to reserve their judgment.

Earlier this week, the actor told Radio Times magazine: “I actually don’t know how much I have. I couldn’t even really guess.

“It doesn’t really motivate me too much. It makes you comfortable, that’s the good thing about it, I think.

“I’m glad it’s there but I’m not really that focused on it.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843255.1544632335!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843255.1544632335!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Harry Potter star Rupert Grint. Picture: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Harry Potter star Rupert Grint. Picture: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843255.1544632335!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/uk/furious-parents-blast-primary-school-for-including-boozing-in-christmas-play-script-1-4843182","id":"1.4843182","articleHeadline": "Furious parents blast primary school for including ‘boozing’ in Christmas play script","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544627410000 ,"articleLead": "

Shocked parents have slammed a primary school after sending kids home with a Christmas play script - where their characters complain about boozing.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843181.1544627406!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "An example of a nativity scene at Christmas time."} ,"articleBody": "

Mums and dads of nine-year-old pupils were not amused by the nativity in which moan about parents getting drunk.

‘The How Christmas Came To Be’ production, which is due to be performed today, features children aged from 11 to as young as five.

One Year Five pupil plays a Viking called “Olaf” and exclaims: “We need to get ready for the feast and more importantly... the drinking.”

Another pupil pleads as the casks are opened: “Please father. Don’t put us through that again.”

One nine-year-old begs with their “partner”: “Please don’t get like last year.”

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A dad of one of the pupils said: “It’s disgusting. My daughter was asked to be a drunk person.”

Another outraged parent said: “It’s always been a bit off the wall but someone’s taking it too far.”

At one part in the script, two “daughters” talk about their dad’s “famous home brew”.

It reads:”After narrowly avoiding his wife with mistletoe Olaf says: Phew! That was a close call. Right, I’d better go and get those barrels of ale tapped.

Daughter 1: You’re right Daddy. Solstice celebrations are not the same without your famous home brew!

Daughter 2: Don’t you remember last year when Mother drank so much she...

(All guests enter the stage and are drinking and eating) Aunty: Please don’t get like last year.

Uncle: I don’t know what you’re talking about dear!

Children: Please father! Don’t put us through that again!

Child 1: It was so embarrassing”

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A former pupil, who now helps people battling alcoholism, said: “They’ve got to be joking.”

The school said the script was not written by teachers at the school due to “the time it takes to write an engaging script” and was instead written externally.

A spokesperson from the Duke of Bedford school in Thorney, Cambs., said: “During one scene Viking adults pretend to drink and eat. At no point were children instructed to act drunk.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843181.1544627406!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843181.1544627406!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "An example of a nativity scene at Christmas time.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "An example of a nativity scene at Christmas time.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843181.1544627406!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/brexit-tory-chaos-shows-need-for-general-election-danielle-rowley-mp-1-4843152","id":"1.4843152","articleHeadline": "Brexit: Tory chaos shows need for general election – Danielle Rowley MP","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544626526000 ,"articleLead": "

The Tories are in crisis and Theresa May has lost all authority. Having led her Government to be the first in history to be found in contempt of Parliament, lost three important Brexit votes and ducked another to avoid defeat, she now faces a vote of no confidence from her own MPs.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The latest YouGov poll has backed Theresa May staying in power. Picture: Matt Dunham/AFP/Getty Images"} ,"articleBody": "

The Tories have never cared about the people of Scotland. And this latest grubby episode shows they are more interested in fighting among themselves than tackling the big issues facing our communities.

While they tear themselves apart, homelessness is on the rise – almost 100 rough sleepers died on the streets of Scotland last year – one in four children are living in poverty, and more than 6,500 youngsters face Christmas without a home.

More and more people are going hungry and relying on foodbanks. Charities and community workers are telling us they’re seeing parents who are going without food so their children can eat.

Something is going very seriously wrong in our economic and political system and needs to change.

Labour has a clear plan, not just for negotiating a Brexit deal that protects jobs, our economy and people’s rights – something the Tories have proved they are incapable of doing – but also for transforming Scotland and the rest of the UK, so we can fix these urgent issues.

READ MORE: Tory MSP says SNP risk wrath of fishermen over Brexit

Ultimately we need a general election. And Labour is ready to fight one and win.

It is increasingly clear the SNP does not want an election. And their game-playing this week has been exposed today, with the news that Tory MPs will vote on May’s leadership.

Nicola Sturgeon was clear that her demand for Labour to trigger a no-confidence vote in Parliament was not because she wanted, or even expected, to win it – Ian Blackford shared a platform with Tory MP Anna Soubry, who confirmed that if there was such a vote, she would back the Government. The First Minister also admitted their tactic might actually unite the Tories to rally around Mrs May when she looked at her most vulnerable. Thank goodness we didn’t listen to them.

The SNP made clear that what they really wanted was to move immediately to a second Brexit referendum. They are calculating that this would create the conditions for another vote on independence.

None of this is about helping the people of Scotland. It is about causing even more instability and chaos. It is shocking, but not surprising – the SNP have form, having helped Thatcher into power in 1979. And we all know what happened then.

READ MORE: Theresa May’s handling of Brexit a ‘classic’ case of bad leadership

The crisis happening now in our communities is an emergency, yet the SNP are prepared to keep the Tories in power rather than tackle it, because their first thought is how they can opportunistically use events for their own, singe-track motive.

Serious times like these call for serious responses. We need Labour’s sensible plan for Brexit and we need a general election to get rid this hopeless, divided Government so we can bring about the real change we need for Scotland and the rest of the UK.

Danielle Rowley is Labour MP for Midlothian

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Danielle Rowley"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The latest YouGov poll has backed Theresa May staying in power. Picture: Matt Dunham/AFP/Getty Images","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The latest YouGov poll has backed Theresa May staying in power. Picture: Matt Dunham/AFP/Getty Images","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843151.1544633768!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/celebrity/love-island-s-dani-dyer-says-she-still-loves-jack-fincham-1-4843170","id":"1.4843170","articleHeadline": "Love Island’s Dani Dyer says she ‘still loves’ Jack Fincham","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544626518000 ,"articleLead": "

Dani Dyer has addressed her split and reconciliation with Jack Fincham, saying she loves him.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843169.1544626515!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Love Island's Dani Dyer confirms she has not split with Jack Fincham and 'loves him'"} ,"articleBody": "

The Love Island winner said she loves the pen salesman and claimed they had had an argument when she said they had split in a post on her Instagram story.

Writing again on Instagram, she said: “Just want to put all comments to bed. All I can say is I’m still 22 trying to get my s**t together and grow into a woman, but doing it in the public eye is sometimes hard and scary, but arguments are arguments and I love him.

READ MORE: I’m A Celebrity: Harry Redknapp crowned King of the Jungle

“I can only please people who want to be pleased and I am having to learn that opinions are just opinions. Hope everyone can understand that i am just a normal girl.”

The couple have been together for six months, having become an item early on in the ITV2 dating series.

They recently filmed a reality show about their relationship after moving in together.

Dyer’s father Danny previously said the couple had not split and she was “immediately regretting” declaring their separation.

He told this weekend’s episode of The Jonathan Ross Show: “I just want to put something to bed. She hasn’t split up with Jack. That’s all bollocks, that is.”

Remarking on his daughter’s social media post, he said: “They’ve had a row, she’s got a bit emotional and I think she has whacked that [message] up and immediately regretted it.

“You know what women are like ... I’m just saying she got a little bit irate, screaming and shouting, the ultimate way to punish him, maybe.

“I don’t know what was going on, but I can tell you now they’re sweet.”

READ MORE: British singer Dua Lipa gets two Grammy Award nominations

He added: “They’ve had a little argument, as we all do, we all have tear-ups.

“Don’t declare nothing to the world, I’ve told her this. That was my bit of fatherly advice. It is OK, it is all sweet.”

In her earlier post, Dani wrote: “Jack and I have sadly decided to part ways. It’s been an incredible six months and we will always have a place in our hearts for each other, but we’ve sadly come to the realisation that it’s not meant to be long term.

“We both plan to stay friends. I hope you’ll all understand.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4843169.1544626515!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4843169.1544626515!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Love Island's Dani Dyer confirms she has not split with Jack Fincham and 'loves him'","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Love Island's Dani Dyer confirms she has not split with Jack Fincham and 'loves him'","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4843169.1544626515!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/who-are-the-possible-contenders-to-be-the-next-tory-leader-1-4842986","id":"1.4842986","articleHeadline": "Who are the possible contenders to be the next Tory leader?","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544615746000 ,"articleLead": "

Enough Tory MPs have now requested a vote of confidence in Theresa May to trigger a leadership contest. But who are likely to be the runners and riders?

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842985.1544615743!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Boris Johnson would be considered a frontrunner in any race to replace Theresa May"} ,"articleBody": "

Boris Johnson

Prominent Brexiteer and former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson (joint favourite at 5-1 with Ladbrokes) is a leading voice of opposition to Mrs May’s Brexit plan.

The colourful Old Etonian was one of the key players in the 2017 Leave campaign and resigned from the cabinet following the Chequers summit in July.

He was heavily tipped as a successor to David Cameron but ruled himself out of the 2016 leadership contest after Michael Gove made a last-minute bid for the top job.

In a diary piece for the Spectator, Mr Johnson compared his former “late night binges of chorizo and cheese” and recent weight loss to Brexit: “We know that we have to make certain changes if we are to leave the EU.”

Mr Johnson refused to rule out challenging Theresa May for her premiership in at interview at the weekend, saying the British people should not “underestimate the deep sense of personal responsibility I feel for Brexit’”.

Mr Johnson, 54, who was Mayor of London for eight years, recently announced his divorce from his wife Marina Wheeler, a human rights lawyer.

Dominic Raab

Former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab (joint favourite with Boris Johnson at 5-1 with Ladbrokes) has refused to rule out standing in a leadership contest.

Mr Raab, a prominent Brexiteer in the referendum campaign, was appointed as Brexit Secretary in July but resigned from the role in November, saying he could not support Mrs May’s deal.

In his resignation letter to Theresa May on November 15, he wrote: “I understand why you have chosen to pursue the deal with the EU on the terms proposed, and I respect the different views held in good faith by all of our colleagues.”

Mr Raab, 44, has been the MP for Esher and Walton since he was elected in 2010. The son of a Czech-born Jewish father who came to Britain in 1938, he is married with two children.

Sajid Javid

In his interview with the Spectator, Sajid Javid signalled his leadership ambitions by arguing that he wanted the Tories to be the party of social mobility.

On Wednesday he said he was backing Theresa May in the contest but he could still throw his hat in the ring if she loses the first vote.

The odds on Javid taking the top job are currently 8/1, according to Ladbrokes. He didn’t stand in the 2016 leadership race but has since emerged as one of the favourites in Westminster to succeed Mrs May.

Javid, 49, who backed Remain in the referendum but has since positioned himself as a firm Leaver, became the first home secretary from an ethnic minority background when he was appointed in April 2018.

The son of a Pakistani bus driver from Rochdale, he was managing director at Deutsche Bank before becoming an MP in 2010. He is married with four children.

Michael Gove

Michael Gove (third at 7-1 with Ladbrokes) appeared to rule himself out of the running in recent days.

With other senior members of the Cabinet reportedly manoeuvring to replace Mrs May if she had lost Tuesday’s ultimately postponed Commons Brexit vote, Mr Gove said it was “extremely unlikely” that he would stand as a future Conservative Party leader.

That apparent reluctance could have something to do with his previous bruising experience in a Tory leadership race.

In June 2016, Mr Gove, who was campaign manager for Boris Johnson’s failed drive to succeed David Cameron, withdrew his support on the morning that Mr Johnson was due to declare and threw his own hat in the ring instead.

He came third in the first round of voting, trailing behind ultimate winner Theresa May and Andrea Leadsom.

Mr Gove, 51, was born in Edinburgh, studied English at Oxford and was a journalist before becoming an MP. He is married to Daily Mail columnist Sarah Vine.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4842985.1544615743!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842985.1544615743!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Boris Johnson would be considered a frontrunner in any race to replace Theresa May","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Boris Johnson would be considered a frontrunner in any race to replace Theresa May","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4842985.1544615743!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/healthy-fit-dad-paralysed-from-nose-down-after-eating-a-dodgy-curry-1-4842935","id":"1.4842935","articleHeadline": "Healthy, fit dad paralysed from nose down after eating a ‘dodgy curry’","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544611014000 ,"articleLead": "

A gym-mad dad was paralysed from the nose down by a rare immune disorder triggered by - a chicken curry.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842932.1544611005!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Braham pictured with his children as he recovered from a curry induced paralysis. Picture: SWNS"} ,"articleBody": "

David Braham, 40, became unwell while watching his son play rugby after the dodgy meal and within a matter of days was fighting for his life in an induced coma.

Medics discovered he was suffering from food poisoning which caused the rare autoimmune disorder Guillian-Barré Syndrome.

The dad-of-two was left paralysed from the face down, unable to talk, and ended up on a ventilator for four months, unable to breathe on his own.

Eight months since the Chinese chicken curry which nearly cost him his life, he can finally walk on his own, and he has been allowed home for a short overnight visit.

Former driving instructor David, from Bridgend, Wales, said: “I felt fine until I had the chicken curry.

“I just picked it up as a quick meal whilst a pupil was taking their test.

“I regret it. I am almost certain that’s what caused it.

READ MORE - New mum ‘bleeds to death after getting lost in Edinburgh hospital’

“I didn’t feel quite right. That night I felt a bit dodgy and I got really ill over the weekend.

“I got ill really quickly. It just started with a tingling feeling.

“Before I knew it I was literally locked in my own body. It was absolutely terrifying.

“”It was like being a living hell. I didn’t know if I’d be able to see my kids again and I didn’t think I’d ever be able to walk again.

“It was the thought of my kids that kept me going. I have been fighting for them. I didn’t think I’d survive.

“I did wonder if there would ever be a way out. All I want to do is play with my kids again and be a dad again.”

David felt poorly while he watched his seven-year-old son played rugby at Liberty Stadium in Swansea in April, but thought it was a “dodgy stomach” caused by the meal from a roadside cafe.

But his condition deteriorated and he was rushed to the Princess Wales Hospital on April 10, four days after tucking into the curry he blames.

He was initially treated with antibiotics and sent home after a six day hospital stay.

But the next day a tingling feeling started to spread through his body - which eventually caused complete paralysis.

Within 24 hours he “couldn’t move a muscle” and was taken back to hospital by ambulance.

It was only then that medical staff discovered he had been suffering from food poisoning campylobacter which caused the rare Guillian-Barré Syndrome.

The serious and rare condition causes the immune system to attack nerve functions and can be triggered by infections including food poisoning.

David, who is separated, was placed in an induced coma for four weeks and placed on a ventilator for four months after he lost the ability to breathe on his own.

David said: “When I woke up out of the coma I had no idea what was going on. I was paralysed and couldn’t feel a thing.

“I didn’t see my children for three months whilst I was in intensive care.”

After being woken out of the coma in May, he began on the long and slow road to recovery.

READ MORE - Theresa May faces leadership challenge from Conservative MPs

In September he was transferred from the Llandough Hospital to Rookwood in Cardiff for rehabilitation.

Thanks to daily physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and weekly aquatherapy sessions, he took his first steps in early November.

David said: “I had to learn how to wash myself and brush my teeth again. It took me three months to be able to move my legs again.

“It was like being a baby and having to learn how to do simple things again. My mind knew how to do everything but my body just wouldn’t respond.

“Spending so much time in hospital has been horrible but I’ve got a strong bond with the guys here in rehab.

“Everyone spurs each other on and pushes each other to go one step further.”

He was able to visit home and spend time with his children for the first time on December 8.

He now has his sights set on sitting at the dinner table on Christmas Day surrounded by his loved ones.

David, who also has a daughter, Georgia, four, said: “To see my kids open their Christmas presents will be the most special feeling ever.

“I can’t wait to be a dad again, just to spent time with the kids. It will feel amazing.

“I’m over the moon. It feels like there is finally a light at the end of the tunnel.”

His old routine would see him take on five or six gym sessions every week, and the weight-lifting enthusiast is now looking forward to getting back in the gym and work next year.

He expects to remain in rehab until at least March.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4842932.1544611005!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842932.1544611005!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "David Braham pictured with his children as he recovered from a curry induced paralysis. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Braham pictured with his children as he recovered from a curry induced paralysis. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4842932.1544611005!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4842933.1544611007!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842933.1544611007!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "David Braham pictured with his son Junior before David was left paralysed by a curry. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Braham pictured with his son Junior before David was left paralysed by a curry. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4842933.1544611007!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4842934.1544611010!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842934.1544611010!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "David Braham pictured in hospital recovering from a curry induced paralysis. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Braham pictured in hospital recovering from a curry induced paralysis. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4842934.1544611010!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/theresa-may-i-will-fight-leadership-challenge-with-everything-i-ve-got-1-4842888","id":"1.4842888","articleHeadline": "Theresa May: I will fight leadership challenge \"with everything I've got\"","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544608050000 ,"articleLead": "

Theresa May has said she will fight a challenge to her leadership of the Conservative Party \"with everything I've got\", warning rebels they are putting the UK's Brexit future at risk.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842887.1544608047!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Prime Minister Theresa May"} ,"articleBody": "

Speaking in Downing Street after it was announced that she will face a vote of confidence this evening, the Prime Minister said a change in leadership would \"put our country's future at risk and create uncertainty when we can least afford it\".

A secret ballot of Conservative MPs will take place between 6pm and 8pm on Wednesday, the chairman of the Conservative backbench 1922 Committee, Sir Graham Brady confirmed after revealing he had received the 48 letters of no confidence from Tory MPs required to trigger a ballot on the leadership.

The Prime Minister must secure 158 votes to stay in her post, but would be severely weakened if more than 100 MPs chose to oust her.

READ MORE: Theresa May faces leadership challenge from Conservative MPs

Mrs May insisted she would stay on to \"finish the job\" she has set herself as Prime Minister, and warned that a new leader would not have time to renegotiate her deal with Brussels.

That would risk handing the EU control of the Brexit process, and could mean the UK's departure is delayed or even cancelled, she said.

\"A change of leadership in the Conservative party now would put our country’s future at risk and create uncertainty when we can least afford it,\" Mrs May said.

\"A new leader wouldn’t be in place by 21 January legal deadline, so a leadership election risks handing control of the Brexit negotiations to opposition MPs in parliament.

\"The new leader wouldn’t have time to renegotiate the withdrawal agreement and get the legislation through parliament by 29 March, so one of their first acts would have to be extending or rescinding article 50, delaying or even stopping Brexit when people want us to get on with it.

\"And a leadership election would not change the fundamentals of the negotiation, or the parliamentary arithmetic. Weeks spent tearing ourselves apart will only create more division just as we should be standing together to serve our country.\"

Mrs May added: \"None of that would be in the national interest. The only people whose interests would be served would be Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell.\"

" ,"byline": {"email": "paris.gourtsoyannis@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Paris Gourtsoyannis"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4842887.1544608047!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842887.1544608047!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Prime Minister Theresa May","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Prime Minister Theresa May","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4842887.1544608047!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/theresa-may-faces-leadership-challenge-from-conservative-mps-1-4842860","id":"1.4842860","articleHeadline": "Theresa May faces leadership challenge from Conservative MPs","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544607836000 ,"articleLead": "

A vote of confidence in Theresa May’s leadership of the Conservative Party will be held this evening after 48 MPs said they no longer support her.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842859.1544601249!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Growing numbers of her MPs are said to be ready to trigger a leadership contest against Mrs May"} ,"articleBody": "

Mrs May will need to secure the votes of 158 of her MPs to stay on as Prime Minister, but will be severely weakened if over 100 vote for her to be ousted.

In a statement, the chairman of the 1922 Committee of Conservative MPs, Sir Graham Brady, said: “The threshold of 15% of the parliamentary party seeking a vote of confidence in the leader of the Conservative Party has been exceeded.

“In accordance with the rules, a ballot will be held between 1800 and 2000 on Wednesday 12th December in Committee Room 14 of the House of Commons.

“The votes will be counted immediately afterwards and an announcement will be made as soon as possible in the evening.”

READ MORE: Theresa May: I will fight leadership challenge “with everything I’ve got”

Owen Paterson became the first former cabinet minister to submit a letter of no confidence on Tuesday, adding to speculation that the threshold might be breached.

However, he said earlier that he did not think his letter had been the one to reach 48.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I saw Graham Brady last night to hand him my letter in person and it appears that my letter did not trigger us over the edge because I think he would have announced it by now.”

Mr Paterson said he had “not found it at all easy” writing his letter, but said: “I just I’m afraid think she’s no longer the right person to lead us through this difficult period.”

He speculated there could be a new PM by mid-January, in the event of a leadership challenge.

If the Prime Minister wins the secret ballot by a simple majority, she cannot be challenged again for a year under Conservative Party rules.

If she is ousted or resigns, a leadership election will see candidates nominated by two MPs, and if more than two candidates put themselves forward, they will be whittled down by ballots of the parliamentary Conservative party every two days until the final two are put to a vote of the party membership.

It is not clear whether the Prime Minister will go ahead with a visit to Dublin planned for today. Mrs May will make a statement this morning in response to the announcement from Mr Brady.

Her cabinet rallied round the Prime Minister, with the Home Secretary Sajid Javid posting on twitter that a leadership election “will be seen as self-indulgent and wrong”.

“The last thing our country needs right now is a Conservative Party leadership election,” Mr Javid said. “PM has my full support and is best person to ensure we leave EU on 29 March”.

Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt posted: “I am backing Theresa May tonight. Being PM most difficult job imaginable right now and the last thing the country needs is a damaging and long leadership contest.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon criticises ‘self-centred’ Tories over leadership contest

“Brexit was never going to be easy but she is the best person to make sure we actually leave the EU on March 29”.

Environment Secretary Michael Gove said: “I am backing the Prime Minister 100% - and I urge every Conservative MP to do the same. She is battling hard for our country and no one is better placed to ensure we deliver on the British people’s decision to leave the EU.”

And the Scottish Secretary David Mundell posted on twitter: “PM has my full support. A leadership contest is the last thing we need. The public want us to sort Brexit now!”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "ANGUS HOWARTH"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4842859.1544601249!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842859.1544601249!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Growing numbers of her MPs are said to be ready to trigger a leadership contest against Mrs May","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Growing numbers of her MPs are said to be ready to trigger a leadership contest against Mrs May","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4842859.1544601249!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5811637612001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/nicola-sturgeon-criticises-self-centred-tories-over-leadership-contest-1-4842891","id":"1.4842891","articleHeadline": "Nicola Sturgeon criticises ‘self-centred’ Tories over leadership contest","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1544606995000 ,"articleLead": "

Nicola Sturgeon has sharply criticised the Conservative party for choosing to launch a leadership contest while the terms of Brexit remain unclear.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4842890.1544613432!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Nicola Sturgeon with Theresa May outside 10 Downing Street last month. The First Minister has criticised Tory MPs for forcing a leadership contest at a time of wider uncertainty caused by Brexit"} ,"articleBody": "

The First Minister said the UK was facing “chaos” while “self-centred” Tory MPs were now busy contemplating replacing Theresa May as their leader.

“Today is a stark reminder that the UK is facing chaos and crisis entirely because of a vicious civil war within the Tory party,” the SNP leader said in a tweet. “What a self-centred bunch they are. They all need to go, not just the PM.”

She added in a separate post: “While Westminster crumbles further into chaos, with a UK government that has ceased to function, the Scottish Government will set out our budget for the year ahead - protecting public services, supporting the economy, and building a fairer country.”

READ MORE: Theresa May faces leadership challenge from Conservative MPs

Mrs May will need to secure the votes of 158 of her MPs this evening to stay on as Prime Minister, but will be severely weakened if over 100 vote for her to be ousted.

Labour said the prime minister’s weakness and failure had “completely immobilised the Government at this critical time for the country”.

Ian Lavery MP, chairman of the Labour Party, said: “The Prime Minister’s half-baked Brexit deal does not have the backing of her Cabinet, her party, Parliament or the country.

“The Conservative party’s internal divisions are putting people’s jobs and living standards at risk.”

Arlene Foster, whose Democratic Ulster Unionist party has supported Mrs May’s Government, said: “I can’t say I’m surprised because being here in Westminster yesterday I did realise there were a lot of conversations going on, however my focus of course has to continue to be on the Withdrawal Agreement and the fact that the backstop needs to be taken out of that Withdrawal Agreement.”

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