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Is the UK-Scotland Supreme Court case the start of a new phase of constitutional conflict?

August 7, 2018

The Constitution Unit Blog

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The UK and Scottish governments are engaged in a legal dispute about the Scottish Parliament’s Brexit legislation, leading to the matter being argued before the UK Supreme Court on 24 and 25 July. Akash Paun fears this could be the start of a new phase of conflict between Westminster and Edinburgh.

Last week the UK and Scottish governments squared off at the UK Supreme Court in a case relating to the Scottish Parliament’s EU ‘Continuity’ Bill (the Continuity Bill) and whether or not it is constitutional, in light of the provisions of the Scotland Act 1998.

The purpose of the Continuity Bill is to ensure there is continuity in Scottish law after Brexit. It retains EU law in devolved areas such as the environment and food standards, and creates powers for Scottish ministers to amend the law so it can operate effectively outside the EU. It therefore has a…

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Fighting Plasticphobia

August 7, 2018

Science Matters


Despite the welcome presence of plastic items in our lives, there is mounting plasticphobia driven by the usual suspects: Multi Million Dollar enterprises like Greenpeace, Sierra Club, Natural Resources Defense Council, etc. The media and websites stoke fears and concerns about traces of chemicals used in making plastic products. The basic facts need reminding in this overheated climate of fear, so this post exposes widely observed poppycock about plastics with facts to put things in perspective.

Definition: pop·py·cock ˈpäpēˌkäk/informal noun meaning nonsense.
Synonyms: nonsense, rubbish, claptrap, balderdash, blather, moonshine, garbage; Origin: mid 19th century: from Dutch dialect pappekak, from pap ‘soft’ + kak ‘dung.’

Below are some points to consider in favor of plastics.  Examples below frequently mention plastic bags, bottles, and food containers, all subject to demonizing reports from activists.

Plastics are functional.

It feels like we have always had plastic. It is so widespread in our lives that it’s…

View original post 1,542 more words

A Financial Times article (Rabbi’s arrest sparks identity debate in Israel, Aug. 3) by Mehul Srivastava, their Jerusalem correspondent, included a paragraph contextualising the new Jewish Nation-State law as part of a pattern of ‘discriminatory’ measures. We contacted Mr. Srivastava to express our concern that his characterisation of the change to Palestinian access to the Supreme Court is extremely…

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