On the highway to indyref 2

Alicsammin is back in the news, not that he ever really left it. You may remember him from last year, while you, oh naive Caledonian person you, thought you were voting in an independence referendum, according to the UK media Scotland was voting in an Alicsammin’s referendum. Alicsammin was, at least until the votes were counted, the only person in the entire UK who wanted independence. Or, according to the Daily Mail, to shamelessly rip the beating heart out of this great nation of ours out of hatred for all things English.

Anyway, Alicsammin has been annoying the UK media again by making the perfectly sensible and obvious point that another independence referendum is inevitable. This has led to an outbreak of oooing and tutting in certain sections of the metrocommentariat, who are playing clips on an infinite loop of Alicsammin saying that the referendum was a once in a generation opportunity. They’re doing this because they’re still labouring under the misapprehension that it was Alicsammin’s referendum.

But it wasn’t, it was your referendum, it was my referendum, it was my maw’s referendum, it was my late partner’s referendum. It was your cousin’s referendum, it was your pal’s referendum. And no one asked us whether we thought it was only going to be a once in a generation deal. I don’t recall the question on the ballot paper being – should Scotland be an independent country and should we never ever ask this question again in your lifetime?

The only question that is still open is the timing. We need another independence referendum. I want another independence referendum. And the only material change of circumstances that I’m interested in is the one that says we’re going to win. We’re not there yet, but support for independence has increased somewhat since the referendum. We need to build on that and increase it. The next time we have a referendum it needs to be a formality, the legal recognition of what will by then be the settled will of the Scottish people, the settled will to become independent.

Alicsammin said that there were already several reasons why another referendum is inevitable. There’s the infamous vow for starters. At the fag end of the referendum campaign when the Union was a doubt we got promised devo to the max. Now Westminster says devo my arse. This super dooper near federalism home rule was supposed to have been overseen and supervised by the personal guarantee of Gordie Broon, who now makes the Invisible Man seem like a bit of an exhibitionist. Rumour has it he’s pissed off to the USA. No one knows who he is over there so he can go to the shops and buy stuff without the risk of having his custom refused because no one has any change.

Despite voting for 56 SNP MPs who stood on a platform of yer Smith commish is pish, Scotland is still lumbered with the pathetically inadequate devo proposals that came out of that half hearted process. The only thing that we learned from the Smith Commission is that giving politicians the benefit of the doubt is always a mistake. It may take a few more years before that message percolates through to No voters, but slowly they’re realising that they were had. A tipping point is in the offing.

Then there’s the EU referendum, the Faragegasm of British politics. There’s going to be a lot more of David Coburn in Scottish television studios, blazing away like a self-immolating bonfire of fart gas and blaming everything on immigrants and the SNP. But he’s going to be a lonely voice as Coburn’s appeal is very restricted, restricted to his own bathroom and a pile of kleenex, and even the kleenex doesn’t want to be there. All by himself he will be enough to ensure a massive victory for staying in the EU from Scotland, no matter how intransigent Angela Merkel gets with small European countries who refuse to toe the austerity line.

However in the rest of the UK, the immigrant bashing tendency is very much in the ascendant, and it’s far from certain whether England will vote in favour to say in the EU, despite the Project Fear on Steroids which will be unleashed on the voters. We’re in a different world now, where support from the mainstream media provokes suspicion and not trust. We may very well end up with a situation where Scotland votes to remain in the EU but the rest of the UK, or at least England, votes to leave. That would turn the entire EU question on its head in the second indyref.

And finally there’s the permausterity. Scotland didn’t vote for that. We voted to grow our economy, we voted not to blame the poor and the low paid for the sins of the banks and the bosses. But we’re getting Iain Duncan Smith making Cruella de Vile look like a patron of PETA, and George Osborne being touted as the next Prime Minister. The self immolation of a Labour party that no longer has a clue what it’s there for, what it’s doing, or how it’s supposed to get out of the hole it’s dug for itself means that we’re all facing being condemned to the Conservative con for another decade and a half. You want the Thatcher era all over again, only this time with no family silver in the form of nationalised industries to flog off? Well that’s what you’re getting, No voters. But there’s still an escape route, and it’s marked Indyref2.

In its report on the story, the BBC made the non-point that getting the UK government to agree to another referendum might prove to be very difficult indeed. Like any independence supporter thinks that we require their permission. The letter of the law may very well say that, but law is trumped by politics every time and if there is a large majority in the Scottish Parliament in favour of a referendum, and it is clear that a majority of the Scottish public wants independence, then we will have a referendum and we will have independence irrespective of what Westminster wants.

You want a legal principle for this? It’s perfectly easy – it’s the principle familiar to hundreds of thousands of Scottish people when told that they can’t do something, the principle of “Aye, that will be right.” Scotland is still on the highway to independence, we’ve not reached the exit yet, but the journey is getting close to its end. We’ll know that we’re there when opinion polls show a consistent majority in favour of independence. And then we can have a party, and get down to some serious work.

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42 comments on “On the highway to indyref 2

  1. opportunity
    noun: opportunity; plural noun: opportunities

    a time or set of circumstances that makes it possible to do something.

    The more the better. If it’s more than once in a generation, wonderful.

  2. […] On the highway to indyref 2 […]

  3. gavin says:

    Boris Johnson and chums, want two referendums on the EU. The Media has been strangely quiet on “Neverendums” in this regard.
    I would hope a new Scottish plebiscite would take place before 2020. 2018 wouldn’t be too soon, with Osborne reshaping the British State in the image of the 1930’s.
    Consider who would lead the NO campaign?
    There are no Scottish “Big Beasts” left on the field.
    Broon, Darling, Alexander (1 and 2 ) and all the rest, all gone, wiped out by democracy.
    We will still have Kezia, Wee Wullie and the B teamers. Plus day trippers from down south, but the real people will all be for the YES campaign.
    As Wendy once laughingly put it—–BRING IT ON !

  4. Indeed, we will need “some serious work”, if we are to escape the clutches of the Bank of England, who would if they could treat Scotland the way the European Central Bank treats Greece.

  5. Alan says:

    So if you got a “yes” vote in indyref 2 (or 3 or 4 …), should there be regular follow-up votes on whether to reunite, or should we after that never ever ask this question again in your lifetime?

    • weegingerdug says:

      In the unlikely even that you can get a majority in parliament in favour of such a referendum, and a majority to vote for it, then knock yourself out love. That’s democracy.

    • James Davidson says:

      There is no record of any country like Scotland which having achieved independence has asked to be re-colonised by not so great Britain.

  6. Great summary Paul, you’ve captured the gist of the argument re: Indy#2.

    For those of us devotee’s of Twitter-sphere, it can be so damn tiring with the amount of Unionists who cannot differentiate between Salmond, SNP and the electorate. It’s the latter who will decide which direction we go in; and you have to keep on asking “when will that message get through?”

    But hey, that’s what the MSM challenge has been, and to which they have ultimately won; to personalise and focus the big issues onto something that the ‘skim thinker’ can attach to….namely personality and their party.

    Politicians and their parties are mere conduits for the voice of the people. It seems strange having to repeat that fact, often, to so may alleged intelligent people.

    To all the Green and socialist voters, let alone Labour-for-indy types it has been a struggle to be heard above the anti-SNP bile coated chatter that is ever present out in the ether.

    If ever there was a time in Scottish history for folks of all political persuasions to band together tightly then it’s now. United for independence has got to be the message here.

  7. JimW says:

    Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon both said on many occasions that the referendum was a “Once in a lifetime opportunity”, and they were right, because Westminster will do everything it possibly can to deny us another opportunity and it may well be a generation before they agree to cooperate on another referendum. That is not to say that another referendum will not be held without Westminster agreement. It would just be easier for Westminster, and perhaps many Scottish voters, to ignore, and in that way it would not be the same kind of opportunity.

    However, as far as I can recall no one on the Yes side, unlike the Unionists, suggested that the referendum would settle the question for once and for all, or that they would cease to ask the question. It was always clear that only a strong Yes vote would have settled the question. Even a resounding No vote would not have settled a question that has been getting asked more or less continually in one way or another for over 300 years. It isn’t going to go away now.

    • JC says:

      So, unless you get the answer that YOU want to hear, then you are just not going to listen. Isn’t that how children react when they can’t get their own way?

      But whatever, it is surely not the way of grown up political reasoning.

      Democracy and the democratic process brought us indyref1 and the democratic and settled will of the people of Scotland, came back with a No vote and so No is the answer you will just have to live for another generation, as repeatedly agreed by the SNP.

      C’mon people, it isn’t rocket science is it?

      So take your lumps and make the most of what we have and lets move on and stop all this whinging shall we? All this neverendum nonsense is doing, is undermining Scottish people – don’t believe me? Try selling your house, because those nice incomers from down south with money to burn have stopped coming up here and spending their money, you might not want them here, but we can certainly use the money they bring with them.

      Independence sounds like a good idea I know, but in a shrinking world, any society that wants to thrive, has to be willing to be part of a bigger union.

      How many people do you know who are earning their living south of the border, quite a few I suspect, yet for some reason we all keep banging on about becoming more insular and withdrawing into ourselves.

      Wake up and smell the coffee guys, we need the union just as much as the union needs us.

      I await lots of answers that address none of what I have said above.

      J C

  8. Steve Asaneilean says:

    You’re right Paul – it’s up to us and patience is the name of the game.

    When and only when it’s clear that the vast majority want independence (by which I mean 70%+) then we hold the refendum with or without WM approval.

    On a side note, I am proud to be a European. I have spent time in more than 10 European countries and I would have no problems making any of them my home if circumstances dictated.

    So I will be voting Yes to “staying in”. But it’s not an unequivocal Yes. I have serious problems with the structure and functions of the EU.

    Their preferred method of introducing new rules is on the basis of “regulations”. Our Parliament, both here and in London, cannot block them despite potentially significant impacts on you and me.

    They have become increasingly undemocratic, often by-passing an ineffectual European Parliament (to which the likes of Mr Coburn belong). Much is done behind closed doors, excluded from democratic or public scrutiny and often pushing a neo-liberal agenda.

    And anyone who doubts should do a wee bit of research on TTIP.

    Are we really campaigbi for an independent sovereign Scottish nation only for our Government to be rendered impotent in the face of developments that could have a profound effect on us all?

    So by all means let’s vote to stay in the EU but we need to make itcclear that the way it currently operates is not acceptable and the status quo is not an option.

  9. Indigo says:

    Thanks for this article Paul, I very much agree that it’s OUR journey to independence, not the SNP’s or Alex Salmond’s or any other organisation, commentator or establishment figure.

    I’ve been playing around with that idea recently and set up this blog http://www.ourindyref.com/about-us/ to act as sort of a repository for indyref experiences of ordinary people and activists.

    In part it was inspired by the Wee Orange Lamb article on this site – her story of her journey is one of the most powerful things I read during the campaign last year, and I’m sure there are many, many similar stories.

    If anyone fancies contributing to it, feel free to send in stories via the contact form (which I hope works… new to this wordpress thing!).

  10. macart763 says:

    Jeez, I’m glad I’d finished my tea before I read that Coburn para.😀

    Yer spot on to boot. The Scottish electorate don’t need anyone’s permission to hold a consultative referendum, indeed I believe it was the original format of indyref 1 before WM jumped in with its size twelves. We want a referendum in order to grant permission for our government to seek an independence settlement? Its a done deal as soon as we give the OK to hold one and our government won’t act but we give them permission. It is ALL about the choice of the Scottish electorate. Our law, our popular sovereignty.

    The coming months and perhaps next couple of years is all about pain. How much pain is the electorate willing to take from Westminster and an ideology driven austerity programme? How many times are the electorate willing to watch both chambers debate Scotland and consistently vote down amendments to the Scotland bill they wished to see enacted? How many rights and institutions are we prepared to sacrifice and lose under the banner of false promises made by a discredited government and political system?

    The first raft of cuts are on their way. The Smith powers are a fiscal and constitutional bear trap in waiting and EVEL will happen one way or the other, effectively making our representation and more importantly US, into second class citizens within our own homes.

    When the SG asks us, and they will ask us when that tipping point is reached, the option is there to put things right at any time WE choose.

    • Skip_NC says:

      I need new glasses. When I read the sentence beginning “The first raft…” I had visions of the Bullingdon Boys’ fags paddling north to love-bomb Scotland.

  11. Brilliant post.

    There is a tendency we all have in varying amounts – the “told you”. Give someone advice, that works out for them – the tendency kicks in with the urge to say, “told you”. Predict a football score correctly, “told you”.

    So my question for NO voters is where are all your “told you”s?

    If we really are better together, where are all the “told you”s, as example should have surely followed example, stretching back to last September?

    You were so vociferous in your arguments, so ten months on, what can you point to and genuinely say “see that, told you we were better together”?

    Every No voter needs called up on this on a regular basis.

    • Iain says:

      Remember this day 26th July 2015 .

      ….[item to add to list like… permanence of the Scottish Parliament = no, Smith Commission proposals = non-delivery or Smith Commission +/Scotland Bill = not delivered in any aspect – all voted down by the ‘listening to Scotland’ Westminster Government (we were of course encouraged to be full participating members on the Union in this – and certainly have participated X56) and the pondering and ever-reflective Scottish, Secretary of State (Conservative)… or of course the PM’s ‘strongest devolved parliament anywhere in the world’ etc = …no! ……

      for he next Referendum campaign in all the ‘pros and cons’ as may be put forward by the ‘Better Together’ side – re. our morals being looked after by representatives of the House of Lords (said Lord now resigned due to ‘inappropriate behaviour’- let’s leave it at that).

      …. we do have road signs of course, we should be eternally grateful for that.

  12. fillofficer says:

    you are absolutely correct when you said that it was an alliksammin referendum. too many times I overheard opinions about the man NOT the bigger issues, I don’t hear as much negativity aboot nicla. so I reckon the change in leadership has made a huge difference towards voting intentions in indiereftwa (stole that !!) canny wait for that. ps, I am a salmond fan

  13. […] On the highway to indyref 2. […]

  14. Dan Huil says:

    I hope the unionist media continues to tell us WestminsterTories [Blue and Red] will refuse Scotland another referendum.

  15. Bittie Glakit says:

    Whilst the labour party are in disarray, and the tories are distracted by their own power in goverment and the growing paedophile scandal, now is the time to convince the no voters to vote yes. Perhaps there should be a ‘one year on’ poll in September to see how many folk have changed their minds.

    I pinched one of your ideas for my site, wee Dug. I hope you don’t mind. Your writing is superior!


  16. Love your blog, as always, just one tiny thing:
    Could you change your line:
    “how intransigent Angela Merkel gets with small European countries who refuse to toe the austerity line”
    “how intransigent Angela Merkel gets with small European countries onto which Vladimir Putin wants to get his paws, and East and West throwing another cannister of petrol into the fire as if Ukraine isn’t enough” ?


    Ulrich (german, living in Scotland since 20 years, no fan of Angie or Vlad…)

  17. Fairliered says:

    Paul, the next referendum will be Andy’s referendum, and Margo’s referendum, and Alex McLean’s referendum. The referendum for everyone who wasn’t fortunate enough to see an independent Scotland in their lifetime.

  18. twathater says:

    I agree in part with Steve Asaneilean but i am vehemently against remaining in the EU under its current construct, to me it is the exact opposite to what i consider to be a democratic representation of the best interests of the people, rather an unelected cabal of commissioners acting in concert with lobbyists to further the needs and ends of multi nationals and conglomerates and ignoring the harm and impact on their citizens. e.g.TTIP, ISDS Fracking

    I recd an email recently from Alyn Smith SNP MEP which i forwarded to Paul in the event he would maybe want to investigate and do a piece on it, who has grave concerns regarding an attempt to push through ISDS renamed but still containing the anti democratic, pro business legislation, which permits companies to sue governments for perceived loss of profit, even when these governments are acting in the best interests of their citizens, this is completely wrong, we elect people to hopefully act in our interests,not the interests of conglomerates who are only interested in profit not society.

    Almost 3 million people throughout Europe signed a petition calling for the scrapping of TTIP or at least the scrapping of ISDS but the unelected commissioner ignored it. When interviewed the commissioner Cecilia Malstrom said * I do not act on the instruction of European citizens* to me this indicates the contempt which these parasites hold for us

    I sent an email to Nicola Sturgeon to gauge her response to this blatant attempt to subvert the democratic process, but still no reply

    I voted YES to independence and self government because i believe we can do it, but I am totally against replacing one undemocratic unprincipled shower of twats (westminster) with another more undemocratic, unprincipled shower of American sycophantic twats (EU)

    I personally am concerned that Nicola, Alex and the rest of OUR representatives seem to hold these self serving gravy swilling parasites in such high regard

    I also feel that to convince the Scottish people to vote for independence they have to have EVERYTHING explained to them in great detail by our leaders, they have to have an answer for every negative statement issued by the unionists,they have to be pro active rather than re active e.g. pensions,currency,they have to show and convince people that we are capable of running our own affairs, finances, banking, jobs, unfortunately many people, the elderly, the unemployed,working people just weren’t convinced.

    I have faith in Scotland, Nicola, Alex and the rest but we have to PROVE to people that we can do it until then it will ONLY be a dream

    • Fillofficer says:

      Amen. My exact thoughts. Hope oor Nicola gets back 2 ya. So much is gonna change real soon. The EU especially. Thanks for reading my mind

  19. lastchancetoshine says:

    Here, just pop “”Labour scotland new generation” in google and you’ll see slab falling over themselves to proclaim a new generation – New statesman, Labour list keiza.. and with MSM more than a handful of times slagging off the “new generation” of SNP MPs.

    So what’s the argument? there’s either a new generation or there isn’t.🙂

  20. twathater says:

    Further to my previous comment would it not be an idea to come up with a list of negatives e.g. currency, monetary union that we can have answers to. I personally am sick of listening to quotes re the Barnett formula and how the Scots are subsidized by our gracious english cousins

    • John says:

      You might ask them how long they think that “subsidy” would last following an (unlikely, hopefully) unsuccessful second referendum. Easy to change the constant in the Barnett formula and keep the same actual formula – speaking from a mathematics point of view.

  21. Saor Alba says:

    It would be very interesting if Caledonia voted to come out of the EU and England (aka Britain), voted to stay in.

  22. smilingvulture says:


  23. […] – mostly because I feel he and I struggle with the same difficulties. While Scot Goes Pop and Wee Ginger Dug cover much of the ground I was planning on trekking, I figure I might as well share my own […]

  24. arthur thomson says:

    Thank you Paul. I totally agree with your analysis.

    In my view, over and above what you have written, we need to focus now on how we challenge the lethal abuse of power at and by Westminster. The veneer of respectability that the msm keep lacquering onto the Westminster establishment needs to be systematically stripped away to reveal the ugly truth that lies beneath. Well known scandals have been and are being spun, played down and avoided and now we have exposure of the surveillance of the Scottish Government by the British intelligence service and the involvement of the British armed forces in Syria. These matters are absolutely the legitimate concern of Scottish MP’s and should be the focus of the 56. The political decisions made at Westminster are being fashioned and implemented by the very same people who have a cynical disregard for democracy and human life, It is these people who are literally conspiring to thwart every effort to make Scotland a better place for its citizens. We have to find a way to bring the perpetrators before the Judiciary to answer for their crimes. Of course we might discover that we do not have an honest Judiciary but we can only know that by testing it and it is only right that those who support the union understand what they are actually supporting.

  25. ‘There are many ways to skin a cat’ a referendum may not be the only indicator of the electorates views. Still work to be done & I suggest starting now, on the issues we didn’t persuade enough about. The nuts & bolts of how we will run our economy, the security of pensions and savings, and how we will pay for it all. These are matters which most Yes are comfortable with in trusting each other as being just as competent as any other nation to run our own affairs, but hard facts on this must start to filter through to the 55.

  26. Jock Campbell says:

    And so the nonsense-mongering goes on.

    Let’s be honest here, NO referendum can deliver independence, so why are we even talking about it? Is your remit purely to demonstrate a majority will in favour of the idea, or would you not rather see it delivered?

    The people demonstrated their sovereign will on the 7th of May 2015… to be represented by a pro-independence political party at the sovereign parliament. In making this choice, they willingly handed those candidates the power to dissolve the union. It is only a matter of time until Westminster hands them the motivation to use it. Thus we could be independent before 2016 is out.

    • macart763 says:

      Yes and no. The treaty of union is a legally binding document and can only be dissolved under particular and equally legal circumstance. Yes, people voted overwhelmingly for a pro independence party, no they cannot declare independence unless they are specifically mandated through the people to do so. Scotland is a democracy based on popular sovereignty, supported by Scots law and historic precedent. The people need to be asked specifically by their government what their wishes are on constitutional reform. The government received their orders last September by ballot and again on May 7th. On both occasions specific criteria were applied to the permissions sought.

      The first instance – don’t dissolve the treaty of union just yet. The second, on a ticket of seeking greater devolution – get us FFA if you can. Its why even many who voted no last September voted for the SNP in May. The swings achieved for the May election could not have occurred without their help. Its a generalisation but think of that percentage as those who voted no specifically to see far greater devolution achieved. The SNP ask specific questions of their electorate through manifesto and policy. That’s democracy and that’s the law.

      Now regard recent events and most specifically of all the wrongs done to the Scottish electorate since September last, the Scotland bill debates. Twenty amendments were put forward, including FFA/Home Rule and twenty were unanimously voted down by the rUK members. The VETO and democratic deficit of the UK in full swing as it were.

      That percentage who loaned the SNP their vote on a specifically mandated ticket may now reconsider their vote of September last and their vote may now be on perma loan.😉

      We have to wait for specific windows of opportunity within this treaty/constitutional arrangement, agreed upon electoral opportunities. Those being of course the major votes for both Holyrood and Westminster. Westminster has just had its chance to come good on its promises. The Scottish electorate spoke loud and clear, but still asked nicely. Holyrood is next year and the SNP have two conferences autumn and spring. Two chances to table a manifesto for the Scottish electorate and the timing has to be right.

      Referendums is IMO the only way to make this happen. You can’t force a population and expect a settled consensus to emerge. The clear majority of folk have to go with you. It doesn’t matter that independence won’t happen immediately after a consultative referendum. What will be recognised by all at home and abroad is the precedent. The UN charter, the claim of right and international recognition will do the rest and that’s only if Cameron stuck his heels in and refused another S30. I doubt he would though, simply because Westminster would be entirely cut out of the referendum process and campaign. Since he can’t prevent one, you can bet he’d want to influence one and with the issuing of another S30 we’re back to the arena of the mutually agreed settlement.

      • Jock Campbell says:

        The Act of union is a contract like any other, and can be dissolved by either signatory to it. Of course, in order for either signatory to make such a decision would take the collective will of the majority of her sovereign representatives, but if the circumstances in which those representatives were expected to do their business had become untenable… i.e. their representation of the nation of Scotland (or England) was being undermined by the system, then it is not inconceivable that they would choose to extract the nation from such a treaty. After all, what is the point in being our sovereign representatives, if they cannot represent us?!

        The Scottish people have a right to full sovereign representation and it is our elected representatives’ duty to ensure we have it. To remain signed up to a treaty which undermines that representation, or blatantly bucks it, would be motivation sufficient to warrant their extracting us from such a treaty by sovereign assertion. That after all, is their job!

        Those representatives received all the mandate they require on 7th May 2015 to represent and defend the Scottish nation from ANY influence which might buck their sovereign will.

        The referendum result of last year is utterly irrelevant. It was irrelvant the day after the result was announced and has absolutely no bearing on the political situation. The referendum was a consultative plebiscite, a snapshot of public opinion. no more relevant than a Daily Star opinion poll. Referendums have no legitimacy whatsoever in a representative democracy. Period.

        The people expressed their sovereign will on the 7th of May… to have a pro-independence party represent the nation at sovereign level. that was their decision. Why they gave that mandate is irrelevant… the fact they gave it is all that matters. if they failed to understand what that sovereign power entails, that’s their problem, they should have thought of that before casting their vote!

        You speak of the right to dissolve the union like it is a party policy. This is erroneous. Dissolution is a RIGHT. A right enshrined in international law and which our representatives can wield in the defence of our nation.

        If the right circumstances were to emerge… such as Westminster intentionally denying the Scottish nation its sovereign will, our representatives will be duty-bound to use that power. and given the national outcry that will come in the wake of such behaviour, our national representatives will be duty bound to act… regardless of opinion polls.

        • macart763 says:

          “You speak of the right to dissolve the union like it is a party policy.”

          Not at all Jock. I’m trying to underline the fact that the SG are required to seek the permission, the mandate of the Scottish electorate when there is no immediate catastrophic infraction to act upon. As a political party this must be in a manifesto as policy for the electorate to consider and vote upon.

          The right to dissolve the union is not in dispute. Of course we have every right, but when and how we can achieve such a thing is. Alex Salmond and the First Minister have made it absolutely clear that when there is a significant and detrimental change to our constitutional rights they will act on our behalf, their preferred method is to ask our permission by democratic ballot in the normal course. They want to carry the bulk of the electorate along with them and for all the right reasons.

          As for a catastrophic failure or infraction of the treaty and our rights? I agree, regardless of polls I reckon they’d act immediately. As to what that action may be? That one is for constitutional experts and lawyers, but until then pressure can and will be applied via the ballot and yes, most likely another indyref. I do disagree that using such referendums is useless though or that they are not legally binding.

          That again is a yes and no. The last one, thanks to the S30 and the Edinburgh agreement would have indeed been legally binding. Any consultative referendum held without such an order would NOT be legally binding, and would not result in immediate independence, but would apply immense and very public pressure. It would also, outside of a specific Westminster mandate (as in times past) empower any sitting Scottish government to act as I understand it. That is, it wouldn’t compel Westminster to do anything in and of itself, but it would empower our government to get the ball rolling on dissolution.

          In either eventuality catastrophic or the steady build up of deteriorating circumstances within the union, the right people are in the right positions to make the call. All we need do is back them up.

          • Jock Campbell says:

            The Scottish government have no say in this issue.

            Only the MPs at Westminster have the sovereign authority to assert dissolution. they have all the mandate they need TODAY to take this country to war, or surrender our national sovereignty to a foreign aggressor! They also have the authority to extract our nation from ANY earlier-signed treaty. And they have that authority thanks to the election result of May 7th.

            I’ll say it for the last time… referendas have no authority in representative democracies. They are consultations only. Our elected representatives may heed the results, or ignore them as they see fit.

            The people gave the representatives the license to weld sovereign power on their behalf, there is no facility to recall. So, what they decide, we must live with. These are the realities of representative democracy in the British Isles.

            • macart763 says:

              Yes and I understood and agreed on the nature of consultative referendums Jock. And yes the Westminster representation have the mandate to protect Scotland’s interests, now ask yourself why they haven’t used the powers and mandate they have in the way you suggest already?

              They know what they’re about Jock. They’ve been working toward this for a very long time.

              • Jock Campbell says:

                It really is very simple, Macart. The Scottish representatives have been working with the Westminster representatives for some time, planning the end of the union. This will come by a pre-arranged timetable.

                One of the aspects of this whole business that is oft forgotten, is that how exactly this dissolution comes about is as important as the deed. The manner in which the end of the union is delivered can make or break Scotland’s fortunes, because world perception is everything. If Scotland’s representatives were seen to act on a whim, it could be perceived that the accusations of Scottish xenophobia against the English were true… or some other petty motivation. It makes sense therefore that the circumstances under which dissolution is delivered are down to London’s unreasonable behaviour, not Scotland’s. London can handle the perception of bully. Scotland needs a good start on the global stage. Nay, it DESERVES a good start on the global stage!

                Westminster will, I believe, attempt to disband Holyrood by parliamentary bill. The reaction to that will be sufficient to motivate Scotland’s representatives to declare for dissolution. They will be backed in that action by the nation’s nobles… and the nation.

                My article: “https://jockscot.wordpress.com/2015/05/04/how-the-uk-will-end/” details this.

  27. […] Ginger Dug notes the democratic deficit, even though he also seems to be of the opinion the time isn’t […]

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