Scotland wants to avoid Brexit but doesn’t know how

DW – August 17, 2018

Time has done little to soften Nicola Sturgeon’s view of Brexit. In June 2016, the day after the referendum, the Scottish first minister declared that a second vote on independence was “on the table” after almost two-thirds of Scots voted to remain in the European Union.

More than two years later, the Scottish National Party (SNP) leader remains implacably opposed to leaving the European Union. Most of her compatriots feel the same: Polls indicate Scottish support for staying in the EU has risen further in recent months.

But opinion remains divided on what Scotland should do about the prospect of leaving the EU. On Saturday about 600 people are expected to attend a rally in Edinburgh in support of another vote on Brexit, as part of a summer of action coordinated by the People’s Vote campaign.

Almost half of Scots would like a vote on the terms of the UK’s departure from the European Union, according to recent polls. But Sturgeon — who has said that both a second referendum on Brexit and on Scottish independence are possible — has so far stopped short of backing calls for a so-called people’s vote.

TINDERBOX Deadly wildfires and killer heatwaves are ripping through the planet from Athens and Sweden to Los Angeles and Japan

Paul Sims and Mark Hodge – July 25, 2018

THE planet is ablaze as it was gripped by a mammoth killer heatwave which has left hundreds dead.

Across Europe, North America and Japan, searing heat and devastating wildfires have also left tens of thousands in hospital.

Temperatures in baking Britain are set to hit 35C (95F) tomorrow.

With no significant rain, one water company has even begged to be allowed to pump extra water from the Lake District to maintain supplies.

The worldwide trail of extreme heat, death and destruction has seen at least 79 dead around the Greek capital Athens in the country’s worst wildfire in a decade.

Temperatures of  41C (106F) in Japan killing 65, with more than 22,000 in hospital with heat stroke.

Forest fires in Sweden and Norway which have left one dead and dozens injured.

The heatwave hit cities across Canada and led to at least 70 deaths in Quebec province alone.

Record-breaking temperatures in parts of southern California, including 49C (120F)in Chino, outside of Los Angeles.

Reports from Algeria say the hottest temperatures ever recorded in Africa was in the northern city of Ouargla on July 5 which suffered a scorching 51.3C (124.3F) heatwave.

Tony Blair calls for second vote to fix Brexit ‘mess’

Alice RITCHIE, AFP – July 17, 2018

London (AFP) – “It’s a total and complete mess”: Former prime minister Tony Blair does not hold back when asked in an interview with AFP what he makes of the British government’s approach to Brexit.

Blair, who held the office for 10 years, said he sympathizes with Prime Minister Theresa May as she seeks to unite her party behind a plan for leaving the European Union, suggesting she has “the least enviable job in Western politics”.

But the former Labour leader warned that with the scheduled date for Brexit approaching in March next year, it is time for her to admit “there’s no way out” and call another referendum — with the option of staying in the EU.

“Once this thing has been started by a referendum it can frankly only be finished by a fresh vote,” he said.

STI warning: Experts fear ‘stealth’ bug which makes women infertile will be untreatable

Douglas Patient – July 11, 2018

A WARNING has been issued about a dangerous sexually transmitted infection which is spreading rapidly.

The mycoplasma genitalium bug, known as MG, makes women infertile.

One in every 100 British adults aged 18 to 44 are already thought to be infected with the bug.

Experts are warning that this figure is set to double within 10 years as it becomes untreatable.

A total of 3,000 women a year could lose the ability to have children, the British Association of Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) said.

BASHH has published the first official guidelines on management of MG on Wednesday.

Paddy Horner, of BASHH, told Daily Mail: “MG has the potential to become a superbug within a decade, resistant to standard antibiotics.

Crunch Time for UK PM May as She Seeks Unity on Brexit Plan

Newsmax – July 6, 2918

British Prime Minister Theresa May is facing resistance from hard-core Brexit backers in her Conservative government as she gathers her fractious Cabinet to hammer out a plan for future trade with the European Union.

The 30-strong Cabinet is being sequestered Friday inside the prime minister’s Chequers country retreat — without their phones — to discuss a compromise plan that May hopes will unite the government, and be accepted by the bloc.

It’s a tall order.

With just nine months to go until the U.K. leaves the bloc, May says the government has “a great opportunity — and a duty” to agree on a plan.

But pro-Brexit ministers including Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson have doubts about her proposal, which would see Britain stick closely to EU rules for trade in goods.

Queen’s Cousin Will Get Hitched At Royal Family’s First Gay Wedding

Evie Fordham – June 18, 2018

Lord Ivar Mountbatten, Queen Elizabeth II’s third cousin once removed, will marry his partner at the first same-sex marriage in the extended British royal family.

His wedding to James Coyle is set for summer 2018. Ivar, a great-great-great grandson of Queen Victoria, came out as gay in 2016, according to the New York Daily News.

This is not Ivar’s first wedding. He was married to Lady Penny Mountbatten for 16 years, and they have three children. His ex-wife will give Ivar away at the ceremony, he told the Daily Mail.

Hezbollah to be outlawed in Britain

Benjamin Weinthal – June 12, 2018

UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid plans later this year to outlaw Hezbollah in Britain, according to a report in the London-based Jewish Chronicle.

Javid pledged to take “decisive action” against the terrorist organization, according to the Tuesday report, which cited a senior Conservative Party source for the full-blown proscription.The Jewish Chronicle said Javid made his decision to crack down on Hezbollah “ahead of last weekend’s Quds Day march in London, where Hezbollah flags were once again flown.”

“Sajid is a very different beast to the home secretary he has just replaced,” said a Tory source to the Chronicle. The source added: “Amber Rudd spoke repeatedly about taking action over Hezbollah – but for whatever reason was not able to get around to doing anything.

Sajid has vowed to take decisive action on the matter. He will make this very clear over the forthcoming weeks.”

MPs vote down House of Lords’ Brexit amendment in crucial EU withdrawal bill vote

RT – July 12, 2018

MPs have voted down the House of Lords amendment to the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill, which, if it had passed, would have given parliament the final say over Brexit negotiations.

This is essentially a win for Brexiteers who feared the change could be used to halt Brexit entirely.

Earlier on Tuesday Brexit Minister David Davis issued a warning to parliament over the possibility of rejecting the government’s compromise on the “meaningful vote” and backing the House of Lords amendment.

“What it actually amounts to is an unconstitutional shift which risks undermining our negotiation with the European Union,” he said. “The government cannot demonstrate the flexibility necessary for a successful deal if its hands are tied midway through that process.”

In a tense afternoon in parliament, Remain MPs said they had received death threats and brandished a copy of the Daily Express newspaper, which ran a headline saying: “Ignore the will of the people at your peril”.

Freak weather storm HITS UK: Snow, twisters and lightning fireballs wreak HAVOC

Oli Smith  – June 10, 2018

BRITAIN has been hit by a freak weather storm this weekend, with parts of the country experiencing snowstorms, lightning fireballs and flash flooding in the space of just a few hours yesterday

A freak weather storm hit Britain yesterday, disrupting the summer heatwave that has swept across the country over the last week.

Scotland bared the brunt of the bizarre weather pattern, with the region stunned by snowstorms, huge hail and lightning explosions.

In one of the worst weather-related incidents yesterday, a family house in Lenzie suffered an unusual lightning fireball, which set their home ablaze.

A lightning bolt struck the family home in East Dunbartonshire, which quickly erupted in flames, forcing the family to flee in terror.

Syphilis and Gonorrhea Spike by 20 Percent in England

Thomas D. Williams PH.D – June 7, 2018

Cases of syphilis and gonorrhea have risen by one fifth in England in just one year, mostly among gay men, according to a report released Wednesday by Public Health England (PHE).

The new report reveals a 20 percent increase in syphilis cases between 2016 and 2017, from 5,955 cases to 7,137 cases, with the vast majority (5,592 cases, or 78 percent) in gay, bisexual, and other “men who have sex with men” (MSM).

The past year’s increase in syphilis diagnoses follows a 10-year upward spiral, with the number of cases increasing by 148 percent relative to 2008 — from 2,874 to 7,137 cases during this period.

PHE said that the number of syphilis diagnoses in 2017 was “the largest annual number reported since 1949.”