Although Blairite McDougall (chief exec of Better Together, former special advisor to BBC Director of Strategy James Purnell and, quite coincidentally, a regular invitee to the BBC’s popular news segment Great British Right To Reply To Anything Vaguely Scottish Or I’ll Call Your Boss) claims that Scotland is hoatchin wi dedicated and fanatical supporters of the Union, ordinary punters can find it difficult to spot members of this supposedly ubiquitous species. Other than that really annoying brother-in-law that everyone’s got.
Best known for its piercing and repeated mating call “I’m a proud Scot but …” the Lesser Spotted Unionist, Latin name Britnaticus northbrittanicus, has failed to thrive, despite a massive campaign to develop a breeding programme which has been expensively funded by the British government and Tory oil barons who have selflessly dedicated themselves to preserving a Scottish ecosystem that they’ve found very profitable.
UK government policy, continued by “the greenest government ever” of Davie Cameron, has for 300 years strived to create the conditions in which the Britnaticus northbrittanicus could prosper, not financially but in the sense of having someone else worse off than you you could feel better than. Traditionally this was Gaelic speakers, Catholics, black people, Asian people, or anyone Continental.
Land ownership was carefully managed to ensure that most of Scotland is owned by a tiny handful, who agreed to clear out the natives in order to provide the natural conditions necessary for the successful reproduction of the species. Industrial slums were grown, sectarianism was fostered, colonialist wars were enthusiastically embarked upon, and divide et impera brittanica was the order of the day. Scotland was once teeming with flocks of North Britons ruling the waves and never ever ever being slaves, at least not in their imaginations.
However in the post war era, the Unionist species has gone into a precipitous decline. The demise of the Unionist coincided with the spread of the virulent Scottish nationalism virus which attacked Unionist habitats. The virus spread rapidly in Unionist heartlands, where it pointed out that it was in fact pretty rubbish that in an energy rich country there are people who cannot afford to heat their homes, it’s digusting that people are forced to use food banks while the City of London continues to enrich itself, and it’s an insult to democracy that Scotland is continually subjected to governments it didn’t vote for who have the cheek to blag all our resources in return for a bit of pocket money.
Worrying evidence of the decline includes a marked reluctance to engage in flag waving and bunting hanging, combined with bouts of projectile vomiting whenever the BBC’s Royal Correspondent appears on screen. By the time symptoms have progressed to episodes of sarcastic laughter and throwing shoes at TVs when UK politicians attempt to explain the many benefits bestowed upon North Britain by those lovely people in Westminster, the former Unionist has already mutated into a new species: Cybernaticus caledoniensis.
Outside their regular haunts in TV studios and between the pages of mainstream newspapers telling us how much of a majority they are, regular sightings of the Lesser Spotted Unionist prove to be difficult to confirm. Although the entirely unbiased Royal Society for the Protection of Unionists has published a number of censuses of Unionist numbers, the figures remain open to dispute as many of the Unionist breeding pairs identified in these surveys have on closer inspection been found to belong to entirely different species – most commonly Mibbii mibbinaw, Wellnaw bitakidbepersuadit, Jistickifurstboax izerraprizefurris, Achtheyrawshite diznaemaiteroniewiis or Pissaffyapollster orahllampyeis (subspecies amnotellinyenuhin).
In the interests of helping readers with an interest in the natural world to identify this vanishing creature, and so they can cross the road and avoid it when they see one coming, here’s a brief guide to the subspecies of the Lesser Spotted Unionist.
B. northbritanicus labordinosaurii
The most common surviving subspecies, although only common in the sense it has no style or class, the labourdinosaurii is noted for its torn faced expression, drab plumage, propensity for feathering its own nest, and its willingness to threaten its own habitat if the habitat doesn’t vote the way it wants. It’s called a ‘break clause’: vote no or I’ll break you. It’s proving quite controversial in Govan, and is being widely cited in zoological journals as startling new evidence that this species may in fact be a vulture, as members of the vulture family are amongst the few birds known to shit on their own support. Called urohidrosis, the accumulation of crap on the lower members can eventually lead to sickness and death.
The subspecies traditionally thrived in industrial areas where it survived on promises of jam tomorrow. Unlike most other Unionists, the fiercely territorial labordinosaurii (also known as Davidson’s Ringfenced Expensaccount) denies that it is a Unionist, and fondly believes that nationalism is something that only afflicts people who have the misfortune not to be British.
You can try and argue with them otherwise, but the response will invariably go along the lines of: “British nationalism doesn’t count, it is of course better than any other nationalism because it’s not nationalist at all. And it’s not nationalist to say that. Oh look, Great British Bake Off is coming on. See, if you’re independent you’ll not be allowed Victoria sponge or Battenburg cake, because they’re British. And not German at all.”
Members of this subspecies also tend to hold that the corrupt and institutionally bankrupt British state is really an exercise in international workers’ solidarity. This is in fact true, although the workers in question are only those who work as company directors in the City of London. In an effort to demonstrate this solidarity in a practical manner, the subspecies collects shiny directorships with an enthusiasm that puts magpies to shame. Davidson’s Ringfenced Expensaccount holds that this shows that the system is working.
B. northbritanicus torii
More widely known by its Scots vernacular name of Yadurrtytorybasterts, a sad few bedraggled survivors are all that remains of this once dominant sub-species, which formerly produced a range of colourful varieties. The exotic attire and tartan troosers of the Nicholas Fairbairnius are sadly long extinct, while the Teddy Taylorii, a hybrid of a wee yappy dug with a Thatcherite, was forced to migrate south and was last seen on Southend Pier wearing a union jack waistcoat and a kiss-me-quick hat.
The handful of remaining examples of this subspecies huddle together for warmth in a dwindling number of leafy suburbs in the Central Belt and the Borders, however their numbers are continually diminished as adults in search of a political career flee south in search of Education Ministeries to crap all over, Defence Contractors’ hospitality, and hotel bedrooms they can share with Adam Werritty.
B. northbritanicus libdemocratus
An ill-advised experiment in hybridisation with the torii has resulted in the almost total extinction of this subspecies. Successful cross-fertilisation requires parties with members of approximately equal weight and influence, but all the libdemocratus had to offer was a very wee Wullie Rennie.
Most of the better known examples, such as the Smug Ginger Rodent (variety: Lookmammyavgoataministerialmotor), have recently been discovered to be Tories who have adopted the plumage of libdemocratus in order to deceive their electoral prey. To the relief of Wee Ginger Things everywhere, the Ginger Rodent has now been reclassified as a Boris Johnston Strawberry Blond.
It’s already too late for this subspecies, extinction beckons.
B. northbritanicus swivelii
The migratory swivelii, more commonly known as the Ukip Swivel-eyed Loon, provides a classic example of evolutionary mimicry. Despite attempting to present itself as a big scary Tory monster, the Ukip Loon is in fact a timid little Tory mutant, easily frightened off by shouts of “Nigel you’re a bawbag.”
More comfortable in southern English golf clubs, where it bores the bar with incessant complaints about frogs that reek of garlic, sausage-munching krauts, and whinging jocks with a deep fried mars bar on their shoulder, it is rarely seen in Scotland. However a stray Loon is occasionally found in Edinburgh pubs in the mistaken belief it’s at an Aberdeen by-election where it hopes to be rewarded with some cheap headlines. It can easily be recognised by its distinctive cry of “That’s anti-English racism that is.”
B. northbritanicus orangensis neanderthalensis
The subspecies has gone into a drastic decline from which it has never recovered. Once the working class version of the Durrtytorybasterts, their influence was partly responsible for delivering the Conservative’s infamous majority in Scotland in the 1950s, when the forces of darkness took 51% of the popular vote in a General Election.
There were a number of causes for the decline in their numbers and influence. The first was an upswelling of new religious fervour. Scotland’s four traditional religions, Protestants, Catholics, Protestant Atheists, and Catholic Atheists, found themselves in competition with a new religion sweeping Europe: Apatheism, the belief that you don’t give a shit about religion. Since its central ritual in Scotland is having a long lie in of a Sunday, followed by Irn-Bru and an aspirin, it proved very popular.
The spread of the new faith was accompanied by a growing realistion that the reason churches continually banged on about personal sexual morality was because, like sex, religion is something which should only be practised by consenting adults in private, because otherwise it can lead to all sorts of unpleasantness which is really best avoided.
As the 60s turned into the 70s and 80s and turned on tuned in dropped out people lost themselves in a haze of herbal smoke and premarital sex, banging a big Lambeg while dressed in a bowler hat, a navy blue crimpolene uniform, and singing songs about killing Catholics lost much of its glamour. Even in Brigton.
But the death blow came when Orange Neanderthals up and down the land discovered that a steadfast and loyal Protestant with a union flag fluttering from his windae box of orange lilies was still going to get made redundant when the factories, the mines and the yards got closed down, belief in Her Maj being about as useful as saying a novena to St Jude the patron saint of lost causes. So that was the Protestant Ascendency pretty much knackered, and it was knackered by the very British Establishment it pledged loyalty to. Still, irony is such a British characteristic, so that’s UK OK then.
Although most closely associated with 17th century history, 18th century social attitudes, and 19th century political relevance, the Orange Sashed Neanderthal has attempted to modernise its image. The organisation now accepts gay people, who can parade in the boa their father woa, which at least makes them acceptable to Glasgow Labour cooncil.
B. northbritanicus fascistbastert
A detailed description of pondscum and fungal infections is beyond the scope of this article.
B. northbritanicus annoyingbrotherinlawensis
Because some folk are just dickheads. Although few in number, they make up for it with the sheer volume with which they make their opinions known, the loudness of their opinion being inversely proportional to the amount of hard facts and information it contains. Unfortunately their information derives ultimately from the sports pages in the Daily Record or the Sun, which makes it extremely loud indeed. Their opinion of Scotland, her people and prospects boils down to one or all of the following: “shite”, “fuckin shite”, “useless bawbags”, “how can we govern ourselves when we got beat by Belarus on penalties”, and “I hate that Alex Salmond.” Nevertheless, they’re still very keen to let us know that they are proud Scots.
In the interests of balance, it should be pointed out that this subspecies has its counterpart amongst independentistas, the Cybergnaticus caledoniensis compulsivebloggerii – who is prone to making friends and relatives run away and hide in case they start banging on about independence again – but at least is far better informed.
In conclusion, if you are lucky enough to encounter an elusive Lesser Spotted Unionist, give them a big hug and a hearty cheer. They’re performing a sterling service, converting Scots into Yes voters.