Brian Taylor, Political editor, Scotland

Brian Taylor Political editor, Scotland

This is where you can find my take on what's happening in the world of Scottish politics

The aftermath of debate round two

26 August 2014
Alistair Darling and Alex Salmond
Alistair Darling and Alex Salmond went head to head in a live debate in Glasgow

Not a knock-out, then, but a clear points victory.

Alistair Darling was still standing, still in the ring, but it was Team Salmond who were smiling.

It was Yes supporters who left the Kelvingrove Art Gallery happy: some chanting, some even singing.

An intriguing night - and a remarkable venue. Broadcasting in advance from the balcony overlooking the main hall, I was perched between a Millais and a Lavery. Just opposite, protected in a small chamber, was Dali's Crucifixion.

There was art too - and not a little artifice - in the debate. Alex Salmond had plainly sketched out his scenario planning much more successfully than in the first televised encounter.

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Analysis: Leader debate (in bite-sized chunks)

25 August 2014
Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling

The debate between First Minister Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling, head of the Better Together campaign, gets under way. So here are some bite-sized chunks of analysis.....

Posted 21:35

Mr Salmond's turn and he pursues Alistair Darling over the issues of welfare and the NHS. He quotes Unison as discerning a threat to expenditure upon health - and repeatedly invites Mr Darling to agree with the statement. He does not.

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Kilts, cold water and poetry

25 August 2014

So how was your weekend? Saturday went swimmingly for me with a thoroughly deserved victory by the mighty Dundee United over a gallant Ross County.

OK, it was a late goal - but it was a powerfully hit late goal. Well done the lads.

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Purdah's welcome relief (for some)

22 August 2014
Edinburgh Agreement
The UK government agreed to the purdah period when David Cameron signed the Edinburgh Agreement

Political purdah means different things for different people.

For Ministers, in the run-up to an election, it places a curb upon their natural desire to evangelise their undoubted talents to the citizens at public expense.

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Settle down? Not a chance

21 August 2014

Politics is somewhat tapsalteerie - and understandably so - as a consequence of the referendum.

Customarily, in August, our MSPs would be absorbing the delights of the Festival or their constituency or Benidorm, according to whimsy.

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A historic setting for a modern offer

18 August 2014
Arbroath Abbey

A sense of history. Over the weekend, I took the chance to see the magnificent James Plays at the Edinburgh Festival. The performances thoroughly merited the standing ovation offered by the enthused audience.

(If you will forgive me, I will excise from my memory, both recent and historic, another contest which took place in the east end of Glasgow over the weekend. I prefer to dwell on events at Pittodrie and Tannadice. Much more germane.)

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The Carney conundrum

14 August 2014
Bank of England HQ
Mark Carney revealed on Wednesday that the Bank of England had made contingency plans ahead of the independence referendum

Horatio Townshend would, I suspect, have been horrified. Raising an elegant eyebrow, I reckon he would have demurred gently. Ditto Stamp Brooksbank. Although one could never be sure about Joseph Nutt.

Mostly, these former Governors of the Bank of England would, I feel, have preferred relative anonymity. A quiet word in carefully selected ears would have been the approach. Perhaps over drinks at the club.

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The dominant issue is back

12 August 2014
Govan shipyard

Jobs and the economy re-emerged today as the dominant issue on the referendum campaign - or, to be precise, that portion of the campaign tracked by the wicked media.

In truth, of course, it never went away.

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'Anxiety mingled with hope'

11 August 2014
Food bank

At the Maryhill Food Bank in Glasgow, they are used to planning ahead. On the wall of their limited space in an industrial estate is a notice, setting out intent.

It advises customers, volunteers and visitors that it will soon be time to think about gathering toys to distribute to needy kids at Christmas.

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More Correspondents

  • Douglas Fraser, Business and economy editor, Scotland Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    Money and business matters from a Scottish perspective


  • Nick Robinson, Political editor Nick Robinson Political editor

    The latest on what’s going on in and around politics


  • David Cornock, Parliamentary correspondent, Wales David Cornock Parliamentary correspondent, Wales

    Welsh view of Westminster, the personalities and Parliament


About Brian

Brian has been a journalist for ever, well, since 1977.

He covers politics in all of its guises - UK, European but mostly Scottish.

Before joining the BBC he spent six years as a lobby correspondent at Westminster.

He has lectured on politics and identity across Europe and the USA and has written two books - and co-written a handful of others.

At St Andrews University, he studied literature.

He is a proud, patriotic Dundonian and fanatical supporter of Dundee United Football Club, losing no opportunity to trumpet their many glories.

He is married with two sons.

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