Positivity? Bah humbug. Being a miserable git is a vital part of my Scottish cultural heritage, along with swearing a lot, laughing at tourists who ask whether they should wait for the rain to go off, and the unshakeable belief that spaghetti hoops count towards your five a day. And it’s because I’m a miserable git that I’ll be voting Yes on September 18 next year.
Politicians are lying, conniving, self-serving basterts. I’ll admit this doesn’t hold for a tiny minority, the ones who practise socialism and don’t just preach it. But that’s a career killer, so all they can do is rant from the sidelines while eejits with expense accounts tell poor people they need to be poorer for the sake of rich people’s bank accounts. Being one of those politicians is a bit like blogging, except their maw can assure her friends the wean really does have a proper job.
But for the rest of them, conniving self-service is the default position. Despite living rent-free at 11 Downing Street, a certain Scottish MP and self-server claimed thousands in second-home payments on his constituency home while also renting out the London flat he’d designated as his ‘main home’.
Alistair thinks his bank balance would be better together with payments from taxpayers. And he even got us to pay for his tax minimisation advice. No wonder he’s so keen for Scotland stay with Westminster. He’s currently leading the campaign to keep us all in the Union, so presumably his main home is the one in Edinburgh. At least for the time being.
There was a minor hoo, a bit of a ha, and a smidgeon of lip pursing when news of Alistair’s freeform approach to expenses maximisation became public knowledge. But then Jim Devine and a handful of other sacrificial troughers were tossed to the polis, and a few others quietly stepped down from their political careers never to be seen again. (Remember poor David Marshall, former MP for Shettleston and his battle with depression? I’d be depressed too if I thought I might have to face a fraud investigation.)
Meanwhile Alistair skipped off behind the veil the Scottish media always draws over rank smells from the establishment. He’s a respected elder statesman now. Must be the white hair.
Tories benefit too – this being the only context in which you’ll see the words ‘Tories’ and ‘benefits’ in a sentence without the word ‘cut’. Take Michael Forsyth (please, take Michael Forsyth, preferably somewhere far far away). Forsyth is the failure’s failure. Even General Custer managed a last stand, Forsyth is the erectile dysfunction of politics.
Michael Forsyth, for those young enough not to remember and those old enough to have repressed the traumatic memory, was Thatcher’s Scottish protege. He was going to convert Scotland to Thatcherism, he intended to foster a culture of free-marketeering amongst the populace of Freuchie, he’d convince the citizens of Prestonpans of the advantages of privatisation. Oh how we laughed.
Forsyth not only lost his own seat in the Commons, his strategy, insight and political nous was responsible for wiping the Tories off the electoral map in the 1997 General Election. That was when Scottish voters decided that conservationists aren’t always right, and sometimes extinction really is the best thing for an endangered species.
This is the most comprehensive rejection a politician can possibly receive, short of actually putting him down a coalmine in Sverdlovsk and getting some Cossacks to shoot him. The message from the voters, thae folk that politicians are always telling us they’re listening to, was resoundingly clear and simple: Get you tae fuck.
But Forsyth hasn’t got tae fuck. He’s still with us, still making our laws and deciding on our fates. He got bumped up to the House of Lords by his pals in the Tory party. Forsyth still enjoys a generous expense account for his time and the trouble he puts us to. He’s spent most of the past 18 months trying to think up ways to screw the Scottish people out of their democratic right to self-determination.
Mere electoral rejection can’t kill off a Westminster politician’s career. And then they wonder why the public aren’t interested in engaging in politics.
So whit dae ye dae with an untrustworthy useless bastert? You make damn sure they’re somewhere you can keep a close eye on them, and where you can give them a well-deserved boot up the airse when they screw up, lie, or generally do a Darling. What you don’t do is give them a career for life, along with your credit card, your bank details, and let them to pay you back a wee bit of your own earnings as pocket money. But that’s what we’re doing now.
You want to make sure that our political masters know that there is a severe penalty for failure, so that when they cock things up – as they always do – there will be a space waiting for them in the queue at the Job Centre where a twenty-something year old career advisor with a sad face can suggest they could consider a job where they could make a positive difference to people’s lives. Like making party tricks out of balloons, instead of balloons making trick parties which is what happens just now.
With an independent Scottish Parliament and a written constitution we can tell the Forsyths of this world to get tae fuck, and we’ll never see them blight our Parlie again. Vote Yes on 18 September 2014 and Forsyth and his ilk will never get their grasping paws on Scottish legislation ever again.
It’s a no-brainer.