by Rab Bruce’s Spider

I am delighted that, after so many promises, Nicola Sturgeon has at last begun the moves towards promoting the cause of Scotland becoming a normal, self-governing country. I know that there remain some Yes supporters who do not believe she will deliver, and others who distrust her motives in doing this now, but in all honesty, if IndyRef2 is to take place next year, then she really had no option except to begin the campaign now and I, for one, welcome this.

I was also pleased to see her change of stance regarding a Section 30 Order. Not that she won’t ask for one, but at least she has now admitted that she must consider what routes are available when the UK Government inevitably refuses to grant such an Order. That, of course, gets to the heart of the democratic problem, because why should we need to ask permission at all if this really is a union of equals?

No doubt we can now expect a bombardment of "SNPBad" and "Too wee, too poor" media headlines, but hopefully most Yessers are familiar enough with these to be able to refute the increasingly desperate and sometimes bizarre arguments put forward by ardent Unionists. I hope that the Scottish Government will get its Media Team into gear to officially refute such arguments as well.

So is this the starting gun? Not quite, because there is no date for IndyRef2 yet, but to stick with the racing analogy, we should now be on our marks. Let’s hope that the "Get set!" and "Go!" stages are not too far away.