Not joining Westminster’s gang

According to the Guardian, the Labour party is close to ruling out entering into a formal coalition with the SNP should Labour fail to win an overall majority in May’s General Election. Since the SNP have been shouting from the rooftops for months now that they have no intention of entering into a formal coalition with Labour, but would consider an informal arrangement not to bring down a minority Labour government, this is news of the non-news variety. It’s a bit like the Gary Glitter Fan Club announcing that they will not, after all, be holding their Do You Wanna Be In My Gang membership drive at the head offices of the Girl Guides.

It’s not clear why the British media persist in talking about a Labour coalition with the SNP when the SNP have already ruled it out. A formal Labour-SNP coalition is a decidedly Tory notion, one designed to scare English voters with the prospect of Alicsammin as a cabinet minister, although why this is a less appealing prospect than Iain Duncan Smith as a cabinent minister isn’t clear. Mind you, having Vlad the Impaler as a cabinet minister is more appealing than having Iain Duncan Smith, and he’d be considerably more compassionate too. The strategy puts the focus on Labour, and is intended to deflect similarly difficult questions about possible Tory deals with the swivel eyed barrage balloons of UKIP.

However because of this Tory election strategy, based upon demonising an entire constituent nation of the UK, Labour has come under intense pressure to rule out going into a coalition with the hairy bekilted barbarian country dancing hordes. After all, the forces of ceilidhdom lost the referendum. It’s just not British to reward Scottish people for failure, or indeed for anything else. Who do they think they are? Bankers or financial service company directors? It is unconscionable that Scottish votes should count except of course when they can safely be added to the tallies of UK parties. Then Scottish votes don’t count either, but in a different, and properly British, way.

So he doesn’t feel left out, Nick Clegg has already ruled out doing any sort of deal with the SNP. But then this is Nick Clegg we’re talking about here, and we all know just how much credence we can place in a Lib Dem pre-election pledge. About as much as you can in the Vow or just about anything that comes out of Gordon Brown’s gob. However it is true that Nick Clegg won’t be doing any sort of a deal with the SNP after the election, or indeed anyone else, because Nick Clegg will have been flushed down the electoral toilet with the rest of the Lib Dems. We remember what happened the last time they made a pledge, and it ended in a ministerial motor and Danny Alexander inserting himself far up inside the rectum of austerity.

The notion that voters in Scotland are – to say the least – chuffed off that their votes do not count, and have decided to do something about it, has set the Westminster establishment in a panic not seen since the last time that Scottish voters scared the bejeezus out of them. That would be in September last year. That panic attack produced a Vow to introduce doubledevoplusmaxiness which was then traduced and watered down more than a homoepathic remedy during the Smith Commission negotiations in which Labour, Tory and Lib Dem representatives spent most of their time on the phone to head office in London being told to gut and fillet the proposals like the wet fish with which Scottish voters are about to slap Labour across the face. So since the organ grinder’s monkeys have not come through with the goods, the voters of Scotland have decided to take over the organ. The organ grinder is naturally not best pleased.

Anyway, the UK media has come over all pettit lip and pouty because it’s dawned on them that a large contingent of SNP MPs at Westminster could hold the balance of power, and effectively choose which tune the Westminster organ gets to play in the next UK government. This means Scotland having an influence in choosing England’s government, and that is what is setting the metrocommentariat in a tizzy. England not getting the government it votes for is an insult to democracy. Scotland not getting the government it votes for is just part and parcel of this wunnerful familee of nations that we’re all better together in. Oh the irony. The Tory media is furious about this, and there was us thinking that irony was a British characteristic.

Meanwhile the Guardian’s political correspondent Andrew Rawnsley reports a conversation he had with a Scottish Labour MP he describes, in an interesting choice of words, as a “sane chap”. Sanity is clearly something that’s rare enough amongst Labour MPs from Scotland that it counts as a distinguishing feature. Despite having a majority of over 10,000, the MP realises that his seat has already been as good as lost to the SNP. The MP has accepted defeat, or to use his own words – “I’m fucked.” Now he’s just going through the motions so he can get his pension. Exactly how going through the motions so he can get his pension differs from what Labour MPs from Scotland do normally, Mr Rawnsley did not explain.

These MPs are as desperate for Miliband to state categorically that no deal will be done with the SNP as Davie Cameron is. Not the first time that the interests of Scotland’s Labour MPs coincide with those of the Conservatives. The dead men and women walking of Labour are pinning their hopes, yet again, on limiting the choices of the Scottish electorate in the interests of personal advantage. But this time it’s unlikely to work.

Under pressure from the Tories on one side, and its panic stricken Scottish MPs on the other, Labour will most likely announce soon that it rules out a formal deal with the SNP. However Labour can’t, and won’t, rule out reaching an informal deal with the SNP. Labour is attempting to dress this up in high sounding rhetoric – claiming that it’s unfair to tell Scotland that Scottish votes don’t count, and that it could bring about the end of the Union. Not that Labour was ever over bothered much in the past by Scottish electoral irrelevance. However they now face the cold hard reality that without the support of the SNP they’re likely to be as screwed as their Scottish MPs.

Scotland doesn’t want to be in Westminster’s gang any more, we’ve discovered we can crack the whip from a distance and make them dance to our tune for a change – and that’s far more satisfying.

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14 comments on “Not joining Westminster’s gang

  1. Rosa Alba Macdonald says:

    I have to ask: who is wagging the dog here?

    I admit and understand the woefully inadequate and infuriating dog whistle tactics of McTiernan et al: repeat an untruth over and over, despite disproving of said untruth by authoritative sources; just keep repeating and it will be assumed true because the forces contesting and disproving will get tired, and since most of them are not Mainstream Media and certainly not Red Top, they are unheard by those without access to and intent to trawl for info online.

    But who is paying the whistler and wagging the dog?

    At the Women for Independence AGM on Saturday in Perth, one women spoke up about corruption in the Local Authorities: mainly South Lanarkshire but insert Aberdeen or Glasgow or many more and we get the same song, whether bulldozing ahead with Marischal Plan or bulldozing the stairs at the Concert Hall. It is not about the little people. Power has corrupted so much – and become the end game – that those represented are forgotten or shouted down.

    Not for much longer: the donning of saucepans and colanders across the land last weekend in solidarity with Our Lassie in a Tin Hat recalled two famous saying: the monstrous army of women and the Wee Army that with any weapon to hand rattled them at Bannockburn and convinced the enemy that Bruce’s forces were bigger and stronger.

    However the question of who is paying the whistler calling the dog and wagging him, whether that dog the Labour Machine, the Tory Machine or the Press is an important question. Just as Aberdeen City Council wanted to be beholden to No Campaign Pet, Ian Wood (of the changing oil facts) High Heidyins at Millbank House and Conservative Office are singing the words on the songsheet of Big Business – big business in the hands of precious few Capos (yes, that is a Mafia term).

    In the 70s and 80s we spoke of 7:84 – seven perscent of the population has 84% of wealth, and the figures are similar for land ownership – 5 or 6 people own most of Scotland.

    This is not democracy – but the cat is out of the bag: and the dog may chase this cat round and round the houses but the cat will win out this time: the referendum was one life and we have come out stronger and wiser.

    • Gavin.C.Barrie says:

      Rosa: Well expressed. The referendum was the first half of this conflict/game/ battle/ whatever. Now lets get out there for the second half, keen to engage. We know Better Together cheated, we now know the referee – BBC, the Media, Civil Service – were “homers”. Lets deal with it. Set aside your political left or right inclination, vote SNP and for empowerment, to make a difference at Westminster for the benefit of Scotland.

  2. Jan Cowan says:

    I enjoyed that Rosa. Best response so far to the WGD’s wonderful blog. A joy to read.

  3. macart763 says:

    Yeah, the SG have used pretty plain language I’d have said.

    Confidence and supply for Labour and yer ontae plums for the other tories.

    Seems straight forward enough to understand, but you know what the press are like? Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.

  4. […] Not joining Westminster’s gang […]

  5. mogabee says:

    And yet again that coalition word used by sky announcer! Nicola Sturgeon re-iterated the “no coalition but confidence and supply” more than once whilst answering questions.

    Also noted that Nicola was thanked at the end of the piece and referred to as simply the leader of SNP, not as she should have been ..First Minister of Scotland. I do hope that was accidental!

    • Lollysmum says:

      She was introduced to the audience as the First Minister of Scotland, the first woman First Minister of a Devolved Government in the UK. I know that because I was in 3rd row of that audience. It was a glowing introduction by the Chair & she was impressive. The audience didn’t interrupt by applauding single points as they do in part political events, they actually listened to every word she said. I think that the nearest description I could use is ‘spellbound’. You could have heard a pin drop yet there were several hundred in that audience. The Q & A included some really good questions & she gave clear & thorough answers.

      At the end she got a massive round of applause & there was an amazing buzz in the air as everyone was leaving the theatre, discussing SNP’s ideas as they went.

      The woman sitting next to me was complaining that she couldn’t vote SNP because she lives in London & she was deadly serious. I live in England & know that voters across the length & breadth of the country have had enough with Labour/Tories/LibDems governments. They are looking for alternatives to vote for but not finding a repository for their votes in existing parties. They are starting to wake up but not enough to affect this election. Next time maybe?

      • mogabee says:

        Thanks for that response. I’m glad that she is being properly recognised as the force she is!
        Sorry for delay, so many blogs to catch up on…so little time. ;D

  6. Reblogged this on andyborland1993 and commented:
    Do you want to be in my gang, my gang ….
    Not really, but needs must!

  7. arthur thomson says:

    I was reflecting today on the news that the Met are to investigate a police cover up of paedophile murders at Westminster. It struck me that ‘abuse of power’ pretty well sums up the British State. It has just been one abuse of power scandal after another. None have ever been resolved satisfactorily and they just keep stacking up. I am now at the point where I do not believe a single statement that emanates from Westminster. I have the sense that it is corrupt to the core. I can only hope that the Scottish electorate have the courage to elect SNP MP’s to go to London and begin the process of calling it to account.

    • Reminds me of this Two Ronnies news item

      Labour was embroiled in controversy last night after another four of its politicians did absolutely nothing wrong. As the Sunday Times published details of four labour peers accepting money to try and influence legislation, the party said it was not often British politics was confronted with a such a spectacular absence of wrongdoing… A Labour spokesman said the latest example of Labour politicians not doing anything wrong would be confirmed after a thorough investigation by the Labour Leader of the House of Lords. It is the first time this year that Labour politicians have done nothing wrong and comes after a series of money related scandals in which there was absolutely no wrongdoing.

    • Jan Cowan says:

      Couldn’t agree more, Arthur.

  8. Johnny come lately says:

    Labour revealing the bloody obvious, that there will not be a coalition is a case of nothing to see here folks move along. Poor Ed really is in a bind, being forced by the evil Tory press barons to rule out a coalition with the 3rd largest party in the UK, before he even knows the results of the GE.
    He can always backtrack after the election. The LibDems did it, why not Labour. Problem is he would be back to square one, which is The SNP from the start have ruled out a formal coalition with labour.
    These theatrics are obviously aimed at a southern audience, but I really do wonder how this is going to go down in Scotland with Labour voters. What he is basically saying is, that he is prepared to throw the election result in the event of a hung parliament and let the Tories rather than work with the SNP.

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