A guest post by Ally Farquhar
Whilst the wee dug is off being spoilt in the Lanarkshire countryside and the Wordmeister is recovering from a bout of well earned Boston Baked Beans I thought it would be opportune to discuss the continuing game of snakes and ladders that is laughingly referred to as the progress of “comprehensive new powers for Scotland.”
This last couple of week’s events down in that central hub of life-force and cradle of all human existence London, are surely set to be put to music in a travelling show akin to the Lion King on Ice, or Cabinet Minister on ice (allegedly) sometime in the mid twenty-first century.
The Bullingdon lads and their disorganised, but loyal, pals across the parliamentary floor are having a field day tying plastic mice to lengths of string, sniggering and quickly pulling them just out of the reach of fifty-six strange individuals with funny accents who have the weird and unusual habit of turning up, and staying put, in the Houses of Parliament during its hours of business. How bizarre, strange people the Scots!
These heroes of Essex have been seen sneaking up behind Chris Law, who is taller than most of them, even whilst sitting down, twanging his pony-tail and bellowing jolly whimsical comments at him through slobbery mouths like “I know you look like a Whig old boy but you must stop clapping whenever one falls asleep on ones’ bench, Huzzah Huzzah!”
The visual impact on the imagination of a smug (call me Dave) Cameron lounging on the front benches, wearing big clown’s shoes, flashing red nose and spinning lapel flower in situ, holding up a felt-tipped cardboard sign with the words DO YOU WANNA FFA JOCK? ASK ME NICELY, SAY PRETTY PLEASE does not sit well, for effectively that is exactly what the might of the majority unionists and their tame parrots are doing. They are taunting the people of Scotland with unattainable powers which they have no intention of delivering.
The infamous Vow, which mysteriously every unionist politician in the UK denies ever having anything to do with, apart from Gordy Brown, who remembers talking to somebody about it, but he can’t remember why, has been well and truly shown to be a busted flush during the debate surrounding the Scotland Bill. Did anyone with any interest in the future for Scots, on both sides of the fence, ever really think that Scotland was about to become as near a federal state is as humanly fundilly mundilly possible, with all its own sweeties and everything?
I would suggest that we, the let’s do it ourselvers, for the most part had absolutely no faith that we were ever getting anywhere with any of that hot air, our noses twitching in the air like an early Karen Dunbar comedy sketch, knowing full well that it was all smoke and mirrors at the time. Many of the let’s stay togetherites were happy just to have something to point at when feeling under pressure from us to explain why they voted no in the referendum. Oh well, ho-hum, such is life.
The jolly jape though that really sticks in the craw is the open wound that has just been exposed to the air as a result of the Westminster vote which reneges upon one of the fundamental proposals of the Smith Commission, the spirit of which was to create constitutional reassurance for Scots by enshrining a protected permanent Scottish Parliament. How is it possible that a cross party group of heavily invested stakeholders can meet, agree, and sign off the terms of such a proposal and then when it comes to the actual crunch of carrying out the parliamentary process to create the law vote on the majority side against it or abstain so that it is stymied?
Those doing so include the massed ranks of elected Scottish MPs of a non-Independence minded variety, all three of them, the Conservative High-Heid Yin, Viceroy of Scotland, Lord Nanki-Poo to be, the New Labour union flag suited nonentity type chap and yon fellow from the Lib Dems, the man with the problem with the truth, who has recently lost his fondness for coq au vin, and may not be in his job for much longer. There you have it, so much for a commitment to more powers for the people of Scotland. It doesn’t bode well for any of the rest of the proposals, weak, hand tying and cosmetic as they may be. We may be able to pick out a nice colour for road signs though.
On a cheerier note the most uplifting comment I’ve heard all week came from that vibrant breath of fresh air Mhairi Black MP, she who is continually slaughtered in the right wing press for such heinous crimes as eating chips and wee sweetie cola bottles, during her guest appearance on the State broadcaster’s radio show “Off the Ball”. When she was asked what her first impressions of the Houses of Parliament were Mhairi responded thus “It’s like a big museum, it’s a bit foosty and ye can feel the dust settling on your clothes”.
That kind of says it all really. Mon the Dug! Enjoy your break. You deserve it.